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So I started Sunday, March 10 with a plan to follow the Whole Living Action Plan 2013, and I did all my grocery shopping accordingly.
It’s not suggested, by the way, that nursing mothers do intense “detoxification” plans that limit you to juice only or have you take supplements or promise to rid you of heavy metals, etc. While most doctors agree that the liver, kidneys, and bowels take care of detox, some worry about the possibility that breast milk could hold toxins that are delivered to the baby.
This plan is far simpler, however, and it’s really only a detox in the sense that I’m detoxing my palette and ridding my belly of a few aggravators. I knew it was safe, so I decided to go for it. I think I didn’t account for calorie allotment with nursing though because the first day didn’t go so well. Here’s my food log for that day:
- breakfast: one cup of coffee with almond milk. smoothie made of mango, kiwi, and spinach
- snack: one banana
- lunch: french lentil salad (I wasn’t so crazy about this recipe and threw the leftovers out.)
- snack: green salad and banana
Then I was driving home from a volunteer committment at about 5:30 and was feeling AWFUL. Shaky and headache and blah. When I got home, I couldn’t even stomach the roasted brussels sprouts I made for dinner (a usual favorite), so I used a calorie-counting app to see that I was 900 short for the day with breastfeeding to consider. No wonder I felt terrible! The simple input-output didn’t add up considering nursing a baby burns about 500 calories a day. So I headed to bed early and woke up with a new plan to tweak things a bit.
I decided to jump in on week two of the plan which allows me to eat lean proteins like chicken or fish and gluten-free grains like oats or millet, still ridding myself of sugar, gluten, and dairy for a while. Day two went a lot better.
- breakfast: one cup of coffee with almond milk. smoothie made of blueberry, avocado, mango, and mint.
- snack: banana
- lunch: leftover roasted brussels sprouts
- snack: Trader Joe’s trail mix
- dinner: creamy broccoli soup, salad with dijon vinaigrette
- late night snack: banana with cashew butter
- breakfast: one cup of coffee with almond milk. smoothie made of pineapple, banana, kale, romaine lettuce.
- snack: apple with cashew butter
- lunch: leftover broccoli soup with an avocado (It’s really good!)
- snack: green salad
- dinner: roasted portabello and kale. I added toasted millet to this one since I’m doing gluten-free whole grains.
- snack: my homemade granola with almond milk
So as you can see, I can’t really claim that I’m following the Whole Living plan anymore. I’m sort of making this my own thing – which is one reason I want to record it all here so I can look back and use some of these recipes again. They advocate no caffeine, yet I’m allowing myself a cup of coffee a day. And I’m thinking I’ll only go two weeks gluten-free since I really don’t think gluten is the evil character a lot of people do. (More on that later.) But I need a major purge from the overabundance of sugar and dairy I’ve been consuming and just a general reboot on the way I shape my menu each week and the way I think of food. More soon, friends. I’m hoping for oat flour banana pancakes in the morning if I can flip them with a baby on my hip!
I turned 32 years old on Saturday. It was a fun day with family and a fun weekend. Spring weather is peeking out a bit here in Georgia, and I’m so ready for it.
As I look back at the past year, much of it is a blur really. Adding another to the family has been perfect and wonderful, but the amount of busy in my life multiplied more than two times over. (How is that possible, by the way? It seems like the work should just double, but it feels like more.) We’ve had so many changes with Jude growing up a bit and beginning preschool. And our decision to sell the house. And Norah’s constant changes as a baby of her age when every moment seems so different from the day before as she grows so fast.
I think the major lesson I have learned in my last year is that of self-care. You know it’s important and you think you understand it, but it’s only when you ignore it that you really feel its weight. An hour of knitting after kids are in bed, a night out with Scott or with friends, a long bath, a good book, a new pair of shoes. There are so many little things that add up to help me stay sane and healthy and productive.
In relation to all of this, I decided to kick off my 32nd year with a dietary detox, and even as I type that, I can hardly believe I am going to try it. I have no will power when it come to food. NONE. I feel lucky that, genetically speaking, I might have an area or two I’d like to work on with body image of course, but on the whole I can eat what I want without too much showing up on my figure. I’m not at all doing this for weight-loss, but for overall health.
I’ve complained here about the kids being sick a lot, and most of 2013 has been nursing their illnesses. Now we are on a well streak, and spring is coming, so I feel like we are nearing the end of this preschool sick season.
But I don’t feel like myself, physically speaking. Not at all. I am sluggish and tired and lacking a predictable appetite and just plain blah. I had to have an antibiotic for a sinus infection last month, and I guess that was the final straw with my tummy because despite taking probiotics and eating yogurt, I am more yuck than ever. Bloated, sluggish, not healthy. This is not at all how I want to begin my 32nd year. The kitchen being such a mess with renovations lead to our eating fast food and frozen pizzas and such far too much recently. To say I need a detox is an understatement!
So I’ve read a lot about the Whole Living Detox Program, and I decided to jump in. I can do anything for 21 days, right!? Week one is super strict – only lentils, nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables, and I started it on Sunday. I quickly realized that my caloric intake was not at all compliant with breastfeeding a baby. So I’ve sort of tailored it to my own thing, and I’ve more or less just jumped in on week two of the cleanse rather than week one.
The main idea is no added sugar (fruit is okay), no gluten, and no dairy for 21 days. Very limited lean animal proteins. This is not a Paleo diet where you can pig out on bacon but not eat rice. Not at all. I’m working on 80% of what I eat being fruits or vegetables for the next
21 19 days.
And I know this is only day three, but I am feeling results already, you guys. Meaning I am not craving junk food as much, not falling asleep on the couch at 8pm, and not feeling like I need a gallon of coffee to get me going in the mornings. So I intend to keep plowing right ahead with it, and logging my food and recipes here. It might be totally boring to anyone reading (sorry!) but it could be of interest to some of you, and I want it as a resource for me as well when I do this again. And I say “when” because I know I will. We service our cars, we reboot our computers, we spring clean our houses, but we tend to let the bad habits in our own bodies just build-up over time. It feels good to have a reboot every now and then. More later.
I’ve intended to write here the last week or more, and I’ve had a hard time sitting down to do it. We are having some work done before we put the house on the market, and while I am grateful for the contractors and their hard work, I am SO READY to not have strangers at my house all day every day. I mean I know that selling the house means a lot of traffic as well, but at least it’s scattered a bit and I get a little notice. As it is now, I’ve had people here for the past nine days, not including Sunday, I guess.
I’m posting a recipe that has been useful to me this week. It’s adapted from Melissa Clark’s In the Kitchen with a Good Appetite, and it’s a favorite for me. The best part is that it keeps in the fridge for a while, so you can have it available when your kitchen is completely inaccessible as mine was for part of last week! (Or of course, if you are busy and just want a quick snack or a side to a sandwich.)
I wish I’d photographed it before I ate it, but I didn’t. No real pictures to share this week really. Except this jewel.
Yep, that’s a toilet on my porch. Ah, renovations. It’s been an adventure and an annoyance. Without further rambling, here’s the recipe. It takes about ten minutes to throw together, and I keep it in the fridge for three or four days.
Broccoli Salad with Garlic and Sesame
1 1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar
1 teaspoon kosher salt, more to taste
2 heads broccoli, cut into bite-size florets
1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
2 teaspoons sesame oil
Large pinch crushed red pepper flakes
1. In a large bowl, stir together the vinegar and salt. Add broccoli and toss to combine.
2. In a large skillet, heat olive oil until hot, but not smoking. Add garlic and cumin and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Stir in sesame oil and pepper flakes. Pour mixture over broccoli and toss well. Let sit for at least 1 hour at room temperature, and chill it if you want to keep it for more than 2 hours. Adjust seasonings (it may need more salt) and serve.
I’m trying so hard to catch my breath lately, but I can’t.
Following three weeks of solid sickness in this house and three solid weeks of husband travel, here we are. I am so tired. I’m tired of even saying I’m tired though. I just muddle through, one foot in front of the other. I read this great post this morning, and I’m feeling a little sad for the days when I had intention. I have none. Get everyone dressed and fed. Do all the necessary house-related things. Do it alone. Get kids in bed. Sit in a quiet house alone. Go to sleep. Feed baby
one two three(?) times during the night. Get up. Do it again. That’s pretty much where I am at the moment. I know a season of intention will come again soon enough, but this month is not that time.
Yesterday was gloriously sunny, so we took advantage and got outside all afternoon. It was good for all of us, I think. For the most part though, it’s been either cold or rainy lately, and Jude has proclaimed his bed the place to play. He piles up people, dog, and toys and sometimes calls it a boat, sometimes calls it a party. Norah doesn’t complain.
We have contractors in and out this week and next. New bathroom flooring, some odds and ends fixed, and new countertops are on the agenda. We are selling our home, and it has been a hard decision to come to. It’s a choice we played with for the past year or more, but we’ve finally decided to jump in with both feet. I hope to write more about it soon, but I will let some things play out first.
When Jude was 9 months old, I quit my job. Then we had some great memories and awesome family travel together. Then Norah was born which is another big change. Things are perfect in many ways, but a little stale in others and sometimes you can just feel like in your heart of hearts you know what you need to do and the time is right to do it. But the bumps and hurdles to get to that place can be so tiring and time-consuming. That’s where we are now. I’m promising to write more soon when I can.
I’ll miss my porch so much. But there are things I won’t miss, and I think a greater plan is at work here, so we are just hanging on to see how it ends. It’s going to be good, friends!
Norah has officially been on the outside for as long as she was on the inside. And just like that tiny bean grows so quickly to a full-grown baby, my tiny newborn has grown to an active little person.
She crawls. EVERYWHERE. Much quicker than I’d like. She has started pulling up on furniture very efficiently, and she even takes a few steps while holding on to the couch and shimmying her way down from one end to the next. If she’s awake, she is never still.
She was honestly never a huge fan of purees to begin with, but I think we have officially left those behind by now. Pinches of beans or peas or soft bread or sautéed vegetables – she likes to carefully pick each piece and scrutinize it before eating it. Punctuated with her slow smacking, this always cracks us up.
I’m pretty sure her first teeth are about to break through because she is red-cheeked and clingy and her poor gums look so swollen. She always looks like she is chewing imaginary bubble gum lately. Just chew chew chewing all the time. Poor girl. It made this month’s birthday photos a little difficult.
How can we be fast approaching a first birthday? That seems impossible. But c’est la vie with babies. These days are gone so fast.
It’s Valentine’s Day 2013, and I’m definitely having the most romantic day ever. Want to hear?
Jude’s horrific battle with the preschool plague continues when he started randomly running a fever again Tuesday, the day after finishing his antibiotic. So we head back to the doctor yesterday, and his double ear infection is STILL THERE somehow, so they give him Omnicef which is a super strong antibiotic. All in all, this will make 25 consecutive days he’s on them. Poor kid. I feel so bad for him.
We get home from the doctor on Wednesday afternoon. I give him a dose then and then another dose this morning. It’s his preschool Valentine’s Day party, and I’ll be there with him for half the day anyhow and the doc tells me it’s not contagious, so I send him anyway.
Norah and I attend our baby music class where she crawls around like a maniac and eats the instruments. Yay!
Then I head to Jude’s school and they seem to be having a great time. He eats lots of good food and makes me a necklace.
Then we head home and he lifts his shirt to scratch his belly and hives hives hives. Like everywhere. Swollen hives. All across his little tummy and lower back and on down to his knees. I run to get the package insert to the newest antibiotic and like all package inserts, it pretty much makes you think that your child is dying right that minute, and I pick up the phone to call the doctor. As it turns out, it’s not entirely uncommon to be allergic to it in this way and as long as his face or throat is not swollen or itchy, we are okay. So they call in an antibiotic #4 and I give him some Benadryl, and he’s sleeping now. I’m just hoping we wake up tomorrow with a new start.
Because y’all, he had hives on the bottom of his feet and he cannot walk at all. So I’ve been carrying two children who total 60 pounds. All afternoon.
And by the way, Scott has been in Boston all week and it’s been WEEK THREE of caring for sick children alone, and I am pretty much at my wits end. He comes home this afternoon feeling terrible, and he just left for urgent care an hour ago and called me to say it’s a sinus infection. Which if course I hate for him, but THANK YOU BABY JESUS it is not contagious. I cannot handle more sick in this house. Cannot.
PSA for all of you: You can be the most kale-eating, granola-making, vitamin-taking, green-smoothie-drinking, real-food-cooking, breastfeeding mama out there. And preschool germs? THEY WILL FIND YOU. And it won’t be pretty.
Last week felt a lot like treading water. I’m happy to say both kids are much better now, but there was a lot of wiping noses and soothing fevers and delaying things like showers and meals for me in efforts to keep up.
I did manage to finish two knits though. Knitting after bedtime was my sanity, and the reward doubled when I actually got to see finished results.
I finished a quick knit with this reversible cowl. I had some thick wool gifted to me, and I wanted to use it for something like this.
And I am so happy to say that I finally finished my Henslowe shawl! I somewhat started this in December, but the holidays were crazy busy, and I couldn’t get much more than a few rows done without interruption. I picked it up again in January, and I finally finished up the edging on Friday. I love this yarn so much.
I’m not sure if I will look like an old lady when I wear a shawl, but I fully intend to wear it anyhow.
Large or small, a finished project of any kind feels so good, doesn’t it?