Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Still Haven't Cheated

 Not much to report today.  I spent all day (from about 9:30am until 10:00pm) cooking foods. 

Turkey, pork loin, bacon, short ribs, egg muffins, chicken breast, and spaghetti squash. I was supposed to make butternut squash soup, but since I do have kids to take care of (and Tom is out of town), I couldn't get to it. 

The kids ate all of the pork loin at dinner. I served it on top of spaghetti squash and topped it with a tomato basil sauce. Yummmm

I am making Veronica's (primal) birthday cake tomorrow. I have no clue how it will turn out. I really hope it's edible. If not, she may just have to go to the cupcake store and get a mound of sugar. 

Okay, have laundry to do ... my house has not really been cleaned or organized since we started GP. I have a lot to do. : O

Good night!

I Remembered Dinner!

 So, I remember what we had for dinner on Sunday night. Waffles!

Veronica has been so sad about no carbs, so Tom, being the wonderful father he is, searched the internet and found a Primal-friendly waffle recipe. It uses a lot of eggs and some coconut flour. So I tried it out. 

Coconut flour is very dense, so the waffle was also, very dense. It doesn't crisp up, but it's not soggy either. Basically, it's a thick bread-like substance that looks like a waffle. It had no flavor really (we used no sugar for the batter), so I made a waffle sandwich.

Cut the waffle in half. Top one half with honey goat cheese. Top with other half. Spread on some coconut butter (made from coconut cream and cinnamon), fairly thick if you can, and then drizzle with pure (not the fake stuff) maple syrup (maybe 2 tsp per person). Then top with fruit. I used blueberries. 

I am not a fan of goat cheese, blueberries, or weird waffles, so I abstained from the feast. The kids loved it! Tom said he could take it or leave it, I think....?

I thought I had taken some better photos, but I didn't. So there ya go.

Monday, January 30, 2012

So... what's the verdict?

Alright people, here we go!

 After three weeks of Going Primal (cutting out processed foods, sugar, grains, and non-vegetable/fruit carbs. And adding a lot of fresh foods!) here are some good points:

  • Every single person in this family is sleeping better. We fall asleep faster. And we sleep sounder. The kids say they wake up feeling rested. I still feel groggy and like I could sleep another three hours, but I'm sure this will get better over time. And Tom who has forever had sleeping issues, is now sleeping much better. So this alone warrants the diet change more than worth it. 
  • Food taste so much better now. I really think Carbs/grains dull your sense of taste, and therefore you need more things added to it to make the taste more pronounced. However, after just about ten days, I noticed none of us really needed to add a lot of salt, lemon, toppings, to anything we ate. We could really start tasting the cinnamon that a month ago you wouldn't have even known was in the recipe. Things like apples are almost too sweet and really can be considered a dessert. At least, the sweetness is a satisfying sweet, not like when you eat cake, and immediately want the whole sheet. 
  • We have more energy overall. Tom used to say (a lot) "If I could just take a nap during the day, I'd feel so much better."  And I would think all day long "I cannot wait to go to bed!". Not much of a way to live. Tom remarked a few days ago that while he hasn't been sleeping as much (a lot of late-night work), he doesn't really drag throughout the day (but still wants to sleep a bit more). And though I still have a hard time waking up, I am not constantly yawning and asking "is it bedtime yet?"
  • Moods are much improved.  I feel as if I have 1000% more patience, and that my moods don't swing back and forth as often. At least, that's my feeling, I'll have to ask Tom if that's true. hehe!  Tom seems a bit more relaxed overall. Each one of the girls has much improved in areas that typically have problems with. Regina is concentrating a bit better. Veronica is not so gloomy (but still sad about no grains). Amy has always struggled with containing her temper, and after three weeks of the diet (before the three week mark) she almost never has an outburst. Elizabeth ... well, I haven't seen a change in her. Darn it. 
  • No more candida (yeast)!  I have battled this dreaded monster for years. All of the girls have been prone to candida since they were born, and I've always done my best to control it. This is the first time they are completely over it. Joy!
  • Acne seems to clear up while GP. I never did have a lot crazy breakouts, but I did have a lot of redness, and those weird colorless bumps that always seemed to be just under the skin. The redness has been toned down quiet a bit. And the bumps have gone completely away. 
  • Life no longer revolves around food. Well, it does, and it doesn't. It used to be that Tom and I would plan our days around what we were having for lunch or dinner. You know, "well, I can't start this project now, because I wanted to go to ______ for lunch and I won't have enough time." Now it's "whatever is in the fridge." Save a lot of time. And money. And hassle. 
  • We almost never throw out food anymore. We are all guilty of forgetting to use the last of those vegetables, or not getting to the chicken before it soured... well, with Primal, I think I threw out maybe a couple small baggies of items we didn't use much. Not bad! Before GP, I would always feel guilty on Tuesdays, when I'd clean out the fridge, when I would be dumping half the food I bought the week before. Either I forgot we had it, didn't have time to prepare it, or just didn't feel like eating it when the time came. Now, we eat about 95% (if not more) of all items we bought, and we make good use out of it. 
  • You don't have to stick to meal times (though you certainly can if you wish). We just kind of eat when hungry, that can be every two hours, or twice a day. No big deal. I am a little more on top of things with the kids, since kids can lose weight quickly and without much notice. Though it hasn't been a problem since they're always hungry and reminding me of it. 
  • My memory seems to be a bit better. Still a long ways to go, but I feel like it is improving instead of getting worse. 
  • We've discovered more foods and food combonations that we would have never thought of, or tried, before. 
  • We are shifting the focus from food as rewards (Wow, you got an A on that test you really worked for, you can pick what's for dinner tonight!  and switched it with "that is so awesome! You can pick a family game, or a new book!") 
  • You get a reality check. You may think you're eating healthy now (while NOT on GP) but you become so much more aware of what you are eating and why, when on GP.
  • Most of the family would spend so much time in the bathroom everyday with some sort of intestinal issue. I am happy to say this is no longer the case!
  • No more furry teeth! You know how sometimes you're driving home and you think you have a caterpillar stuck on your teeth, and you just can't wait to get home and brush?  Yeah, on GP, you almost never have that feeling. 
  • My parents (and several of my siblings) have battled high blood pressure from a really early age (20's). My own blood pressure has been in the 160/98 range for a few years now. Well, I am elated to say that it is now 125/80, which is a miracle! No drugs. No crazy exercise. Just no grains!
  • My eye sight has improved. I noticed (around the third week) my depth perception had changed. I thought "well, there is always a negative to something as great as this eating "plan". So I went into the Optometrist, and for the First time EVER, I was able to read four lines of that annoying "E" paper. This was without glasses. I am still in shock over this. Who knew grains/sugar had this much of an effect on eyesight?
  • This ties in with sleep... the kids were always complaining of having "bad dreams." I couldn't figure out the source, and finally we just accepted that we'd all have crazy dreams. Since going into week two of GP, I have not heard anyone say anything about dreams. Period. I have noticed that the one time I cheated, I had really crazy, graphic dreams.
I really think one needs to GP for at least six weeks before really reaping all the benefits, but this is what we have expeireinced within the last 21 days. Not bad at all!

Now for some of the Cons:

  • It is time-consuming. There is just no way around this. Sure, they are time-saving tips, but really, that just means "somebody else did some of the work for me, so that I wouldn't have to do it all the time."  For example "Cut up all vegetables, and precook meats so that they are ready to go!"  yes, this is well-worth the effort, but it basically means somebody spends hours per week just chopping and cooking. Doesn't really save time. 
  • It takes a lot of pots, pans, and dishes. Oh and forks! I may even have to buy more utensils. When you cook more, you use more dishes. Fact. It helps if you have grown a few kids to help with this area, but if not, you'll definitely be spending more time cleaning up. 
  • Carb Flu is NOT fun. Seriously was at the level of having panic attacks and not wanting to leave the couch. It did pass quickly though, so don't let this scare you off.... Just an FYI.
  • If you have kids, this will be more difficult. Kids have such funny tastes anyway. And kids love to rebel. So be ready for a lot of whining and bargaining and pleading. 
  • It's a bit difficult to travel and stay Primal, but it can be done. It takes some advanced planning and some resolve, but it can be done. 
  • If you're not big on cooking, reading labels, and knowing how to grocery shop, this can be a little overwhelming. Thankfully, we had a leg up in this area, so we did okay, but I can see how beginners would struggle. Start small, research, and expand!
  • Things like school treats, birthdays, and social gatherings can be awkward. You don't want to be the only one who has a thing about eating cake, not having a beer, nope; the peanuts are off limits too.... We had to tell everyone we're on a 3 week plan, so just expect us to be weird. This actually helped. My kids had some rough days when parties were going on at school and they couldn't have one single thing at the party. (which reminds me, does nobody believe in giving kids fresh fruit these days?!)
  • It is a little difficult to entertain people, because GP is costly. And the clean up would be crazy.
  • It is *not* true that your grocery bill will come out about the same as when you were not primal. Mine has doubled every week. This could be because we didn't buy a lot of junk before and therefore "your junk food is swapped out for the good food, so you break even" might not apply to us, but yikes, double the grocery bill is a lot.
  • To make things easier, you will need to buy a few extra kitchen gadgets (such as a dehydrator, a salad spinner, extra cutting boards, super awesome knives, and a good quality blender) which can be pricey, but very worth it! (I love knives, btw. My friend calls me a "knife snob"... I'm not. I just think you should have the right tools for the right job, and a steak knife is NOT for cutting cucumbers and potatoes). 
  • the kids are still constantly hungry. I've fiddled with the fats, the protein, the (natural) sugars, and the vegetables. I can't seem to get it right. I am hoping in another few weeks we will all level out and the kids will be satisfied with fewer meals. Also, kids tend to confuse hunger with thirst, so maybe that's one thing. 
  • Kids hate to drink water all the time. I have found it almost effortless, but Tom and the kids have really struggled to just drink water. Even Regina, who is not big on sweet drinks, said the other day "Argh! Couldn't I just have one Sprite?!"  
That's all I can think of for now.  

Overall, I'm so happy we did this. I think in a few more weeks we will look back and say that Going Primal is the best thing we could have done for our family. We plan on sticking with it for at least three more weeks. I personally do not think I'll ever go back to eating the way I had been eating before GP. We *may* allow oatmeals and brown rice back in the kids' diet every once in a while. And I'm not sure where Tom stands on everything, hopefully he can get me an update fairly soon. 

So for the big weigh-in!

Tom has remained steady at 7 pounds of weight lost! His stomach is much smaller too. I will have to take his "after" photo on Wednesday since he is out of town. 

The kids have not really lost weight, but have lost their round tummies. Regina always looked about six months pregnant, and that is slowly, but surely going away. 

Given that I am a woman and subject to annoying hormone changes, I couldn't weigh myself today since I wouldn't get a true reading. I'm afraid I'll have to wait until next Monday. Sorry : \

The girls asked if they could have an Oreo for dessert (somebody sent them home from school. UGH) and I asked "do you want to go back to feel the way you did before we started eating the new way?" I fully expected a "we don't care, give me the cookie!" response, but they all said "noooooo!" So for kids to say this, with Oreos staring them in the face, tells me that this "diet" is working, that it makes us all feel pretty darn good, and it's worth the sweat and tears. 

So, go forth and take the Three Week Challange!

We did it!

We finished the 21 Day Challenge! No cheating either. Yes, we're awesome, thank you very much. ;)

I don't know if I even remember yesterday. Let's see....

Oh, it was Sunday. In the morning (before Mass) I made the girls some coconut smoothies. I am still waiting on my Ninja blender... I wish it would hurry, it takes 20 minutes to make these things, rather than five like it should.

I made eggs for me, but accidentally left them at home. I pretty much had no breakfast. Though, I did find some nuts in my purse, so that was something. 

All of us had Chipotle for lunch. It's sort of a tradition that we go out for lunch after Mass on Sundays. However, I was home with the baby (I got Chipotle take out), and Tom was out with the girls. I don't know exactly what they ordered, but I am *in love* with the Fajita Bowl (minus rice, beans, tortilla). It is so good, and it fills me up for hours! It's definitely worth the extra $1.80 for the guacamole. Besides, they basically give you an entire avocado's worth, not a small dallop. So good. Go try it! All the ingredients are organic and made from happy animals. 

I don't remember what we did for dinner.  Elizabeth has been sick the last few days, and I've been going to bed way too late, so hmmm... sorry, I just can't remember. Maybe Tom could tell me, but he's in Las Vegas right now giving a speech. 

Tom says we should do a "wrap-up" on Day 22 when all is said and done. So go to the next post!

Sunday, January 29, 2012


 I'm sorry, I know I said we'd do the big weigh-in today, but due to a sick baby, Tom getting ready for yet another trip, and various issues with different children, we will have to postpone this until tomorrow.

Thanks for checking in!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Day 20

Wow, the Three Week Challenge is almost over!

Tomorrow I'll give a whole run down of the pros and cons of the challenge. And I suppose we'll have to do a weigh-in (blah). So make sure you check in tomorrow!

I love weekends. It's so laid-back and the kids can eat whenever they feel hungry. They started off with a big breakfast of eggs and bacon. Still no luck on Greek yogurt. I am beginning to think I'll just not win them over to this. Darn. 

Then they had a snack, a few hours later, of berries (rasberries, blueberries, and blackberries) and a coconut cream dip. (Coconut cream from a can, cinnamon, and a splash of vanilla) They didn't care much for the dip, but I made them eat it anyway. 

Lunch was steak medallions wrapped in thin slices of bacon and baked for 15 minutes. Stick a toothpick in it and serve with mustard. Yum! 

Their snack was salad (greens, celery, cucumber, peppers) and a healthy serving of olive oil and lemon. 

They also had an apple with some cinnamon butter at some point in the after noon. 

Dinner was sliced beef and steamed broccoli.

They aren't drinking as much water as they should be, and I'm struggling to convey how important the water is for them. So my new rule is "one cup of water before you eat" anytime they ask for food. Hoping this helps. 

I had a light meal day for the most part.  I had a few nuts for breakfast. Lots of water. And three steak medallions in the afternoon. Not much after that since I've had Elizabeth be super-clingy the last few days, and it's made cooking difficult. I did have a ton of water though!  

Tom and I went to see a play at the Community Theater (a spoof of murder mysteries)  tonight. I thought I'd grab a snack while we were out, but the drive meant we didn't have time to stop. The ONLY thing sold at the theater was giant sized cookies. Of all sorts. YUM! 

I was so hungry by intermission I asked myself "If I take a cookie and eat it in a very uncivilized manner, would it be counted as being Primal?"  

Well, is it?

I wasn't sure, so I held out. Wasn't going to cave (get it?) on Day 20. And I didn't want to tell the blog-world I ate a stupid cookie. I mean, if I was going to cheat, I at least want something evil like Red Velvet Cheesecake!  Anyway... I did really well, until I saw Coke Floats which a few other people were eating. AHHHH!!

I didn't eat anything. At all. Be proud of me!  

After the play, Tom found a Chipotle for me, (it was our first time eating at a Chipotle) and we had fajita bowls: steak, peppers, onions, tomatoes, some cheese, and quacamole! It was soooo good. I think I am in love with Chipotle. 

Tom and I hit up the Kitchen Store while we were at the Mall today. I love the Kitchen Store. We finally found a dehydrator (beef jerky!) and a few other odds and ends. I am not a shopper, but I could spend the weekend in a kitchen store.  

Oh, and we found that Yo-Nanas thingy. It makes "ice cream" with frozen bananas. Veronica's birthday is on Wednesday and she has repeatedly asked for an ice-cream maker. I figure this new banana thing will be the best of both worlds. I hope. 

Alright, I have to get to bed. Check in tomorrow!

Friday, January 27, 2012

And Day 19 is Over

Hi again!

  We started off the morning with a three egg breakfast for each kid. Elizabeth refused eggs at first, so I gave them to me, and as soon as she saw I was eating them, she wanted it back, which means I had no breakfast today. Oh well. The kids were full! I put the eggs, once cooked, into a plastic cup and then added a big dollop of butter. They also had a clementine, which they love, so they were all set with breakfast. 

As a brunch meal, I made an egg scramble with the last two eggs we had left in the house. Two eggs, crumbled (1 piece) bacon, and maybe 1/4 ounce cheddar. Pour it all in, scramble it up, and enjoy. Really good, and easier to make than an omelet! Of course Elizabeth ate half of this as well... well, hopefully she'll start bulking up soon. 

Tom found some awesome recipes for waffles (using coconut flour) and I'm anxious to try them out. I think it will really help lift Veronica's spirits, she still can't stand the no-grains thing. So maybe we'll be trying those out tomorrow or Sunday! I hope it doesn't take longer to clean it up than it does to prepare it. I hate clean up. 

For lunch I made Tom a salad (we're running low on veggies now): Romaine lettuce, peppers, cucumbers, onions, some cheese, bacon, and steak cubes, all topped with avocado oil, olive oil, and lemon juice.

I had the same base, then: sunflower seeds, celery, no cheese, and shredded turkey. It was quite possibly the best salad I've made yet! Definitely try your salads with roasted turkey, it's a nice change of pace, and really light and delicious. 

Lunch boxes:
Breakfast: 3-eggs with Clementine
Lunch: Green salad, peppers, cucumbers, porkchop strips, with avocado and olive oils, and a dash of sea salt. 
Snack: cherries and nuts

They were hungry when the arrived home, but not ravenous, which is how I like it so that they'll eat dinner. 

Dinner!  Dinner was a hit all around tonight (finally!), so listen up, Cori, it might work for you :)

So I'm running a bit low on some ingredients, and still had some roasted turkey leftover from the other night. So we made Lettuce Turkey Wraps with a guacamole, string beans, and kale chips. 

First, make a quick guacamole: One  avocado, one tomato, lime juice, pepper. I put the peeled avocado into a bowl, diced the tomatoes--add to bowl, and then grind fresh pepper, and a few tsp of lime. Mash with a fork. 

Next, take a fresh, large Romaine lettuce leaf, lay flat. Spread 1-2 tbsp of guacamole on the leaf, then add a generous helping of shredded turkey, add a bit of olive oil (not too much), wrap, and secure with a toothpick. I thought it might be too simple, but everyone really enjoyed it. It will definitely be on our "to keep forever" list. 

I also made fresh green beans, sauteed in bacon grease, and garlic. I cook them until they are tender but still crunchy. It makes for a fun finger food, and I thought the kids would enjoy it. 

I also made Kale chips!  I took a head of kale, de-veined it, tossed it with bacon drippings, two crumbled pieces of bacon, paprika, and some Tabasco and baked at 350 degrees for 12 minutes. Everyone ate it, and Amy even said "Hey, I like those weird green things!" 

Friday night is typically movie night at our house, and we usually have popcorn... well, Tom and the kids do, I don't really care for it that much. Tonight we had to think of something different. I suggested vegetables, but the kids didn't want to go for that. So I handed over the bag of pork rinds, which two of the four kids enjoyed. I guess I'll have to keep searching for a movie snack.

Any ideas?

Cake Again?!

 Veronica, our middle child, is turning seven on Wednesday, and has begged for a strawberry-chocolate cake. First of all, Ew. Secondly, how am I going to pull this off?

I've spent about an hour trying to find a recipe that would work for us, but wasn't having much luck until I hit upon this blog: PrettyinPrimal

Looks like a great recipe (I'll figure out a substitute for sugar though) and an interesting site.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Day 18

 You know, by day two of the 21 Day Challenge, most of us in the house were saying "how are we going to make it through another 18 days of this?!"  And now I can't believe it's almost over!

It's definitely becoming more of predictable at this point. I can now just run through my mind the contents of the fridge and know whether or not if I have enough food for meals for that day. In the beginning I felt it too overwhelming to even think about lunch when we hadn't even made breakfast, so we really just made it one meal and snack at a time. 

Last night I was just done with cooking, food, and cleaning. Sometimes you just have to leave it all alone. At 6:30 I just went into my room and left the kitchen clean up to my kids and Tom. And they did a great job cleaning up and putting away food while I chilled out on the computer. (Thanks, dear!) 

Anyway, I didn't pack lunch boxes last night, so I had to do it this morning (on top of having to make breakfast), which made for a chaotic morning. Fun times. I did decide to do something differently for the lunch boxes though. I took a handful of about anything I could find, put it in a snack-size Ziplock bag, and added a banana and clementine. My thinking was "let's see how much they will really eat if I give them several different choice, and in smaller amounts...will they end up eating more?"  

It seemed to work well! They all came back with mostly empty lunch boxes. 

I didn't make a breakfast, breakast, but rather let them pick what they wanted from the lunch box.

So (as closely as I can remember) I packed: 

2 oz sunflower butter
Large slice of roast beef
Celery sticks
1/3 bell pepper
Coconut flakes (about an ounce) 
Cheese (for Amy)

must be a few other things, but I can't recall them.   Anyway, they all ate but one thing (different thing for each of them) and when I saw them around 4:30 (Tom picked them up) I asked if they had had enough food for the day. They all said yes. I asked if they were hungry, two said no, and Regina said "not really, but a little."  

So now I have to rethink the idea that kids need one major food item and one or two side items for lunch. Maybe with kids have a huge hunk of turkey seems too much for them and they don't want have "just turkey!"   It will take a little more time but it might be worth it. 

Anyway, a fast-favorite dinner of ours is fajitas! Chicken, steak, and shrimp mixed with sauteed onions and peppers. We added in a lot of avocado, some sour cream (full fat, of course) and lettuce/tomato. Veronica is the only girl who will willingly eat avocado (though it's a small amount), but I did have each kid eat at least one tablespoon of guacamole. It really does help to fill everybody up. Since I found avocado oil, and it has little taste, I think I can start adding this to the kids foods, and they won't even notice. Extra fats and calories!

The baby has gone back to be very clingy and picky about what she'll eat. Argh. I did get her to eat some yogurt, peppers, a little chicken, and cucumbers today. I drenched the vegetables with olive oil so she would at least get some fats. I guess I'll keep working on her. 

I made a huge salad with steak strips, olive oil, and lemon for lunch. Yummy, yummy. And for snack I had a banana (mainly for the potassium) and a piece of cheese. It's only my second (or third?) piece of fruit in the last 18 days, so I felt fine about eating it. So good.

Tom needs to really up his water intake. So anybody out there who have good thoughts on how he can get more in without hating it so much, please share! 

Btw, I noticed today that Regina's stomach--which has been perpetually bloated (looking six month pregnant) since she was two years old--has dramatically flattened. Finally! I really think it was the grains causing it, but I never would have guessed it could have caused it to bloat that much!

I still have to figure out how many calories per meal they kids are getting, but I think the extra oils will help a lot.



 I wanted to make sure that my kids are getting enough calories, so I decided to go to this really amazing site: FatSecret.com and type many of the foods we've been eating and figuring out how much we are actually consuming.  

 Now I have to add up all the ingredients I put into each dish and see what it averages out to. It will be an exciting day, let me tell you!  I did find out (through my good friend Google) that children between the ages of 4-8 years old should be consuming 1400-1600 calories a day. That didn't seem like a lot until I saw that most good-for-you food is not that high in calories. You can literally eat anything you want and not really have to worry about eating too much. Nice!

So this week I'll be figuring out high (enough) meals for the kids and begin to add new items to our rotation. 

If you have any foods that are your favorites (and kids will be open to trying) please share it!

Here's the list:
  (all numbers are calorie units)

Eggs—72 each

Olive oil –119 tbsp


Sunflower seeds—35/ 2 tbsp

Pumpkin seeds—153 /ounce

Cashews---101 /ounce

Pistachios—158 per ounce

Tahini—89 / tbsp

Coconut oil---250/ 2tbsp

Bacon grease—254 per ounce

Clementine’s—35 each

Grapes---62 per cup

Apples—72 medium

Bananas—105 medium

Strawberries—77 per cup

Blueberries—83 per cup

Green beans—35 per cup

Celery—14 per cup

Onions—48-64, depending on color

Carrots—45 per cup

Greek Yogurt---260/ cup

Mango—107 per cup

Avocado—240 per cubed cup

Cheese (cheddar)---523 per diced cup

Mexican cheese—106 per ounce
Feta cheese--75 per ounce
Mozzarella -- 85 per ounce

Bell peppers—31 per medium pepper

Tomatoes—22 / medium

Butternut squash—63 per cubed cup

Spaghetti squash—31 per cubed cup

Acorn squash—56 per cubed cup

Sautéed mushrooms/onions/peppers—160 per side

Honey—70 per tbsp

Maple syrup—52 per tbsp

Shredded coconut--- 416 per cup

Coconut flour—120 per half cup

Chicken stock—10 per cup

Porkloin—154 per four ounces

Beef sirloin—285/5 oz

Turkey—88 /3 oz

Chicken—126/4 ounces

Bacon—27 calories per slice

Roast beef—83 /med slice
Ham --- 60 per 2 0z

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

17 days and Counting!

First of all, welcome to our new friends who are just now joining us on our Primal journey! And much appreciation for Lew Rockwell's posting of our blog on his blog! See it here: Click me!

Let's see... I started off the day with a three-egg omelet ( I always want to spell "omelet" with two "T"s, I think it looks better that way) and a few slices of bacon. Yum! This breakfast always keeps me full for at least four hours. Definitely worth the time and money (which is really not all that much).

And then I shopped around town to find some organic, clean ingredients to make a cake for Elizabeth. This takes a lot of time when you live in a place that is restricted in healthy foods. If you want to eat a lot of fast-food with little nutritional value, this is place to be! 

I found some coconut flour and coconut chips (shaved coconut) and a few other things... like, who knew there was such a thing as bottled avocado oil? Well, I'm sure many of you did know this, but it was news to me. I had to buy it of course.  Now... how to use it? Is it used to drizzle on salads, or mainly to cook with, anybody know?

Tom and I opened the coconut chips, just to try it out, and now I think I'm addicted to them! They are very versitile too. Add it to trail mix, to steamed vegetables, as a cupcake topping, or just on its own. The kids loved the crunch of it. And while I've never been a fan of coconut, this organic stuff is sooo different than anything else, it's really a subtle flavor, and it tricks your mouth into thinking it's having a sweet treat. Win. Win. Win. 

After the omelet I don't think I had lunch. I just wasn't hungry. I had some the coconut chips, and about 2 ounces of trail mix (sunflower seeds, pumpkin seeds, walnuts, and a few (as in maybe one in every handful) dried cherries) and lots of water.  I was starving by dinner time though, but I find it comforting to actually feel 'real' hunger for a change. 

Dinner was a roasted turkey breast (I made about seven pounds of turkey breast the night before) and fresh green beans (a ton of them!) which were heated in bacon grease, and had coconut chips added in, and some sea salt.  It was so good!  I admit, it's still weird to have "just two things" for dinner. We're used to a meat, a starch, a veg, and rolls or salad. Nobody left the table hungry though, so I think it will start to seem normal soon. 

Also, for kids who are a bit resistant: I bought the kiddie paper plates which are cartoon animals (don't know what they're called) and started serving food on this. I want to experiment and see if it makes a difference in how the kids perceive the food or not. I'll keep you posted! 

And I would suggest buying the smallest paper plates you can find (or using your tiny salad plate) as your new dinner plate. The smaller the plate, the easier it is to fill the plate with just a meat and veg (or whatever it is you do) and trick your brain into thinking it's still a full dinner... well, it is a full dinner, but ... you know what I mean. 

We now keep olive oil and butter on the table as regular condiments to drizzle on just about anything. That's also taking a little getting used to--getting past the "it's bad for you" hype--but really, really yummy! 

I think Tom ordered a Ninja blender last night, and I can't wait for it to arrive! The smoothies are the quickest breakfast by far. And giving the girls eggs in the mornings is time-consuming and I am running out of eggs frequently.

So the girls had four eggs each for breakfast today. I mixed in butter and some coconut oil in hopes of it keeping them full.  I think it worked too well. They weren't that hungry for lunch. Oops. 

Lunch Boxes:  
Breakfast: scrambled eggs and a small handful of grapes
Lunch: 2-4 pieces of leftover meat, a bit of cheese (cheddar or feta) and a handful of cut bell peppers
Snack: Pistachios.

They were hungry when they came home, but I think more out of habit than real hunger.  I really need to figure out how many calories they need to be taking in, and if it is matching up with what they are being given. The trouble with being in school is there are designated times to eat and I can't force them to eat when they'd rather be playing with friends (during lunchtime).  I may have to make breakfast their highest calorie meal, lunch the fewest calories, and dinner pretty hefty as well. All of my kids (except Elizabeth who is a tiny little thing) are right in the middle of healthy BMI range, and I don't want them losing weight.  

BMI calculators can be a good tool to gauge your or your child's health. Try it out!

 This link is for adults.                 And this one for children.

Not sure what Tom had for breakfast, but for lunch he made avocado deviled eggs. He says he really enjoyed them. He did not take a photo of them though. :\

If you're interested, here is the recipe.  Let us know what you think!

So happy birthday to our little Elizabeth and good night!

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to our youngest daughter, Elizabeth!

                                                                             Elizabeth, two years old

She turned two today! My primary goal for today was to find a Primal-friendly cake to make for tonight. I found many interesting look recipes, but all of them wanted anywhere from 1/2 cup to 1.5 cups of maple syrup, agave sugar, or other sugars I've never even heard of. I think that's too much, especially for being in the middle of the Three Week Challenge.

I was really sad thinking she wouldn't have a cake. I know there are all those "but she's so much better for its" and "a bowl of fruit is just as yummy!"  comments, but cake is a tradition and that does count for something. I had decided I would just have to make a coconut mousse and call it cake. Then... I remembered a friend had sent me a link for lemon poppyseed muffin.

Well, I didn't have any poppyseeds, and no time to go buy them, so I thought I'd just make the lemon muffin part and then top with heavy cream a bit of melted dark chocolate. Turned out well!

The recipe does call for 1/2 cup raw honey, but I'm still unclear on if we can have honey during the first three weeks or not, so I cut that down to 1/4 cup, which came out to roughly 8g of (natural) sugar per muffin. Not bad!  And, raw honey is said to help with candida IF taken in moderation. I don't have any sources that can pin that down definitively, but it is such a trivial amount, I felt okay about it.

Here's the recipe (thanks to Elizabeth Imeson!)

  •  Grain Free Lemon Poppyseed Muffins 1/4 cup coconut flour
    4 pastured, local eggs
    1/4 cup local honey of choice
    1/4 cup expeller pressed coconut oil or butter
    1/4 tsp sea salt
    1/4 tsp baking soda
    1 TBL poppy seeds
    1-3 TBL fresh lemon juice (adjust based on how lemony you want the muffins to taste)
    Soften coconut oil or butter and blend all ingredients together in a bowl until smooth.   Bake at 350F for about 10-12 minutes.    Makes about 20 mini muffins.

    find more at www.thehealthyhomeeconomist.com

    Lemon muffins with a simple ganache and shaved coconut

    Everybody loved them!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Tom's Update--two weeks in

Overall I'm glad we've decided to do it. I wasn't the worst eater in the world, but I had been getting progressively worse over the years, as a sweet tooth I didn't have as a young man really came to the fore. And now that I understand food better, I realize that even my non-dessert eating was far from ideal. So I know it's a good and important step forward to move away from my old habits.

Still, I am torn. For one thing, I'm not very handy in the kitchen, and if you're going to have much variety with this approach you will need to be, at least more so than I am. That's fixable in time, of course. Another is that I feel I need another 5-10 good recipe ideas that are relatively non-time-consuming, both for lunch and dinner. I'm in the process of gathering them. I'm not as enthusiastic about salads -- although I do eat them -- as most of the people who eat this way seem to be, so I need something else.

Another thing is that traveling while doing this is very difficult. Airport restaurants seem calculated not to support you.

And frankly, I very much do miss pizza and desserts. Not to mention that bland beverages are no substitute for the Coke or orange juice I used to enjoy.

Now I do realize these things are bad for me. But I think people understate how difficult it is to give these things up. Or maybe they didn't care for them as much as I do. I still want a big plate of macaroni and cheese. And I like munching on something in front of a movie. Someone actually suggested I dump popcorn for kale chips. Kale chips?

So I do appreciate the health benefits of this, believe me, and I know there are lots of delicious foods we can eat without counting calories. All of that is great. But I still crave a calzone -- from the local joint, and not made from scratch with almond flour after an hour's worth of effort.

One consolation is that I live in Topeka. To paraphrase my friend Bill Kauffman, finding good pizza in Topeka is like looking for the Juice Newton wing in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. So my biggest temptations aren't exactly staring me in the face.

I imagine myself sticking to it, but looking forward to the 20% deviation in the 80/20 ratio.

Day 16 and Still Kickin'

 Well another day successfully down!

I spent four or five hours in the kitchen today. I did a lot of chopping, bagging, and labeling...  but now my fridge is wonderful rainbow of colors!  I thought about taking a photo... so I did... but now I'm too tired to go into the kitchen and find the camera to upload it here.  It's pretty though! I keep opening the door just to look at it. 

Okay, moving on.... 

Let's see, what did we do today (other than chop vegetables)?  Not much, really.  

Let's start with Lunch Boxes:

Breakfast: 4oz Greek yogurt with 1/2 tsp raw honey, and 1 tbsp coconut oil, and a handful of blueberries. 
Lunch:  Salad (greens, peppers, carrots, celery, cucumbers) with strips of steak (cooked the night before). Salad dressing was the lemon juice and olive oil. 
Snack: Trail mix 

Okay, they *hated* the breakast. They will eat Greek yogurt perfectly well if they think it's sour cream, but they refuse to eat it otherwise.  :::sigh:::  Breakfasts are so annoying when you have to rush out the door. 

They were hungry when they came home from school. I thought that was odd, but figured out because they "just didn't have enough time to finish our salad."  Gah

 I had a fruit tray waiting for them as an after-school snack (apples, blue/ras/black berries, and leftover cantalope). I wanted some fat to go with it, but I knew yogurt was out as a base. So I thought and thought and came up with this: Coconut Cinnamon Butter Dip.  They absolutely loved it. 


2 sticks butter (organic of course)
2 tbsp coconut oil
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/8 tsp ground cloves
a smidge of honey, but not too much

Put all ingredients into a glass bowl. You can either microwave or steam the bowl until it's all melted. Stir together well. Then stick in the fridge until it starts to set (but not too much)...stir and serve. 

It was very buttery, but the cinnamon and cloves gave it a nice warmth and hints of sweetness. Try it! Lots of good fats, good brain food, and it really helps curb hunger. 

Dinner was mashed cauliflower (steamed with garlic, mash with butter, a bit of salt and pepper) and pork medallions (which was leftovers from lunch the other day). And a side of orange bell peppers. 

They didn't care for the cauliflower this time around, but too bad, they had to eat it. 

Then they wanted pistachios. Is there anything wrong with pistachios? Probably, since it's one of the few foods everybody likes and nobody is allergic to.  I gave them a few each and told them no more food until they drank a lot of water. 

My (ex)doctor a few years back told me that children (and often-time adults) confuse the feeling of thirst for hunger. I have really found this to be true. I always have them drink at least six ounces of water, and then wait about twenty minutes before they eat. After the water, they either forget they were hungry, or they eat less than they otherwise would have. 

I basically had the same lunch as the girls did, but mine was much bigger, which was a good thing because Elizabeth came along and ate half of it. 

Oh yes, Elizabeth... well, she's been extremely difficult to deal with the last ten days or so. She's always been high-maintenance, but man is she cranky and clingy lately. She's refused to eat anything except yogurt and some fruit for a good two weeks now. I always give her a plate of whatever it is the rest of us are having, but it usually ends up on the floor. Anyway... she was a moody monster this morning. I put her in for an early nap and she slept for three hours! She usually wakes up crying from her naps, but today she was all smiles "Hiiiiii!"  She was really happy, bouncy, and then ate half my salad!  I am thinking the worsening of her moods and food issues were caused by yeast die-off. I really hope we have turned a corner with all the kids at this point. 

Tom and I went to the movies, and then had dinner at a new (to us) steak house around here. I ordered extra steak so I could bring it home for tomorrow's breakfast. Score. While the steak and steamed squash was decent, both Tom and I agreed that we miss potatoes with steak. At the same time I wasn't really tempted to eat them, but I did miss them. Not sure that makes sense.

 My resolve for this week is to get more sleep. Going to bed at midnight, then getting up at seven is just not cutting it.

The 25th is Elizabeth's second birthday! Tomorrow's goal is to find a Primal friendly cake (of sorts) I can make (without too much labor/time) for her. I still haven't figured out if we can have desserty things during the three week challenge or not.  Anybody know?

Monday, January 23, 2012

Day 15

 Well, I feel like I can start to relax a bit. Really, no matter how much people say "it's no big deal. It's easy!"  It's not. Anytime you have a major change in your routine, it's a bit stressful. However, it is extremely rewarding. So do it! 

The kids woke up today all crying, saying they were light headed, and they just didn't feel right. So I panicked, wondered what I had done to my dear children, and then... I fed them a banana and told them to get dressed. They ate the banana, and ten minutes later, they were smiling and bouncing off the walls. I think it's too much on them to cut out fruit. They're kids. They can take it. And they need it. I want to focus more on them eating real foods, rather than just filler snacks. Although, I don't want them to have as much as they had been having. 

I woke up early (blah!) today so I could take the new blender out of the box and get it ready to make coconut smoothies for the girls' breakfast. The stupid thing was not able to crunch through six straberries and mango pieces. Piece of junk. So back to the drawing board on which blender to buy.

Any suggestions?

I bought each girl a special "sweat free" cup with straw that we will use for smoothies. They were very excited. Kids are so cute sometimes. Anyway... they drank the smoothie (I really hate the word "smoothie" by the way) and seemed satisfied. It had lots of fat, protein, and lots of vitamins/minerals. And they *loved* it. 

Lunch was a salad (I bought special "salad on the go" containers which hold dry salad, and a separate container for dressing): Romaine lettuce, cucumbers, bell peppers, a few carrots, sunflower seeds, bits of ham, and a pinch of cheese (for Amy). The dressing was one part lemon juice and two parts olive oil. 

For snack I gave the a two ounce serving of homemade trail mix. 

I volunteer during lunch time at the kids' school on Mondays, so I was able to keep an eye on how much they ate, and if they liked it.  Amy and Regina loved it all. Veronica says she tired of salad. I laughed saying this was only the third (traditional) salad she's had over the last two weeks. Apparently, she's still angry. Oh well. Her salad cup was empty by the time she walked in the door to the house. Nice. 

Annnnnd, there was no "we're just so starving!!!"   FINALLY!  Thanks to all who helped with high-fat ideas, and limited fruits during the day suggestions. :) 

Dinner was a Taco Salad.  Ground chuck, tomatoes, guacamole, lettuce, greek yogurt, and about a half ounce of cheese (Feta for the allergy kids). All of them had seconds, and Veronica had thirds! I'm not much of a fan of ground beef, but it was good enough. We needed some salsa with it though. I bought some pork rinds, thinking the kids could use it as a chip/dip type deal. Veronica is the only one who liked them. Ahhh, trial and error is the name of the game lately.

Anyway, before bed they asked for a snack, which was about an ounce of trail mix. They seemed happy going off to bed. 

Veronica seemed (other than the salad thing) much better today. I'm hoping it's the increase in fats and it will continue to get better. 

Tom has exactly 24 hours to get me his update, or I shall start revealing one secret after another until I do get the update.  

My headaches have been mostly gone. I find they come back if I go too long without eating though. So I definitely don't starve myself. And I do need to work in some form of exercise. I'm still trying to work out something that compliments our family schedule. So far I run from 7am til about 9pm and I am not exercising at night. Anyway... we'll see what happens on that. 

Oh, my blood pressure has dropped TEN points. BP issues run in my family from the time we're young (18 or so) and kinda just hang around. I'm excited about this and I hope it continues to decrease. 

Anyway, I'm beat. I was up doing housework until about 1am and then have to get up six hours later. Ew. 

Thanks for joining us this far!

First Official Weigh-In!

:::Drum Roll please:::

I have officially lost 7 pounds, 2.5% body fat, and 2 inches around my waist. Ta-daaa! 

It's like magic. I've never been hungry (except on purpose: choosing to wait an extra half hour until dinner), I don't feel deprived (except of Coke), and I feel so much better!

I have a lot more patience. I can wake up much more easily (which is huge because I *hate* mornings). And I find myself sleeping better, more productive, and just generally more happy.  

I am going to call this success! 

Tom has lost .... 7 pounds as well! I don't know about the body fat and such, but his stomach is flatter! 

None of my girls have lost weight. A very good thing :)  I asked each child what she liked about the diet and each one said great things. 

Regina: "Oh I sleep much better. I used to just lay there and it would be really late before I could fall asleep. And I can wake up and not be so tired." 

Veronica: "Well... I still want cookies. I fall asleep right away now. And I don't have to spend a lot of time in the bathroom anymore! 

Regina: "Yeah, me either!"

Amy:  "Well, I used to toss around all night, and I don't do that anymore."   

I can say that all three of them have been less moody overall. They do have their days though where they really hate the "diet" and we have a couple of meltdowns every once in a while, but overall, everything is going really well!

That's it for now. Be back later tonight!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Food Photos! (day 14)

Hm. thought I had more than just the lunch photos. Oh well. Here you go anyway. Tell me it's not a pretty lunch!

Bacon/brussel sprouts/bacon salad!

 Veronica says she is too hungry to wait.

The girls being Primal.
The uneven bacon coverage is bothering me

Coconut Smoothie Recipe

Forgot to put this in the post earlier... 

The kids were really getting hungry just before lunch, and I knew it would take me awhile to pull lunch altogether, so I made them a quick smoothie (about 5 oz each) and they loved it. I'm excited about that. It's the first thing they've really been excited about eating. So below is the recipe. Try it out!

4 frozen strawberries.
3 small pieces frozen mango
1/2 cup coconut milk
Splash of vanilla (Organic vanilla is an amazing thing, people!)
3 oz water

Place all these things in a blender and blend until smooth.

Then add one egg.
Add one tablespoon coconut oil.

Blend again. Serve with a crazy straw. 

*** update: the coconut oil has a tendency to lump up in the blender. So I suggest melting the oil first, and then pour it into the blender while *it is running*. *** 

I did not have any, because I'm trying to avoid fruit, but I don't think it's that much sugar at all. It worked out to be one strawberry and 3/4 piece of mango (about 1/2 square inch) for each girl. The rest was fat and protein. 

I didn't think of it at the time, but I should have added some cinnamon since cinnamon is a natural appetite suppressant. Not sure if it would have complimented the fruit flavors, but it's worth a try for the next time, I think.

So, if you try it, let me know how you like it! If you have a variation of it, let me know that too!

Day 14 and Thank You!

 First of all, thanks to all my bloggie friends who have offered up a lot of recipes, tips, and advice for me and my family! We are excited to put some of these things into practice. :)

So today is Day 14.... Tom is out of town (again), so it was just me and the four girls to tough out the weekend.  Okay, first of all, let me say... I spend a heck of a lot of time in the kitchen. Whether it's chopping, cooking, or cleaning. It's really time-consuming. We're starting to discover some time-saving practices, but for the most part, it's time-consuming. Maybe once I have kids old enough to wash super-sharp knives, and not kill my beloved pots and pans, cleaning will be a bit easier.  And (as I've said before) I think it is likely that we will have more free time once we get things under our belts a bit more. 

So for breakfast I made 17 eggs. Yes, 17!  12 of which were the whole egg, and five other eggs were just egg-whites (since Regina is allergic to the yolk). I scrambled it all up (the egg-whites separately) in a pan with bacon grease. Then I dumped huge portions on each child's plate (along with some leftover bacon) and I *defied* them to be hungry after this! In fact, I ate about 2 of the eggs (sharing with Elizabeth) and waited, because I was going to eat the leftovers. Well... there weren't ANY left! Seriously? How can they eat that much?! At least they left the table saying they felt full.

The full feeling last exactly two hours. ::SIGH::  I *just* finished cleaning everything up, and I hear "Mom, could we have a snack?"  Argh!  So I told them they could have a handful of trail mix. Incidentally, our trail mix consists of: Sunflower seeds, cashews, pumpkin seeds and a handful of dried bing cherries (not many though, maybe 2 cherries per cup of nuts).  They declined. They haven't really warmed up to the idea of nuts. They were really partial to peanuts before Going Primal  (GP). 

So we did our Sunday prayers and then had made lunch. Lunch was a shredded raw broccoli and brussel sprouts salad, mixed with bits of bacon, the bacon grease (about 1/2 tsp) and a tablespoon of coconut oil. On top of the salad was pork tenderloin medallions (which was prepared in the crock-pot the day before), and the pork was topped with a savory greek yogurt sauce. 

Surprisingly, all the kids ate it up. They weren't fans of the yogurt sauce (mostly because they knew it was yogurt), but I did hear "this salad is so yummy!" which was pleasant change. 

I thought the added coconut oil would help satiate their appetite, but about 1.5 hrs later ... "Mom, what can I have for a snack?"   I'm about to give up on keeping them full, people. I'm not sure in can be done. And they are by no means overweight, so I know it's not just a bad habit of eating too much. I've never seen them eat this amount of food. 

Sooo... what do you think? Is it because their minds still want sugar and is therefore telling them they are hungry, or are they legitimately hungry?

Anyway, they begged for a snack around 4pm, so I asked what they wanted. They all wanted grapes. So I gave them ten grapes. And I gave two of them cheese to go with it. The other two I asked if they wanted nuts, but they didn't. I warned them they would be hungry soon. And that would be eat, unless they wanted nuts, until dinner time. They didn't care. 

So dinner was about two hours later. We had a ton of grilled chicken, a little steak, and sauteed onions and green peppers. I added in some lettuce, tomatoes, and quacomole. Every kid has said, repeatedly, over the last two years "I don't like it." So tonight I said "Look, this stuff will make you feel happier, and keep you from getting hungry so often. I want you to have at least one bite."  Two out of four kids said "Hey, this is great!"  Weirdos.  By the time they went to bed I realized I had not heard "but can we have a bed-time snack?" as I've heard for the last two weeks. So there ya go. Buy a ton of chicken-that-should-last-you-three-dinner-nights and cook it up. You'll be held over for three hours instead of two...    ugh 

Tom has really not had a fun time of transitioning from SAD (Standard American Diet) to GP "diet". He's really been down on it for the last few days. It's been tough on everyone, but especially for Tom and Veronica. Anyway... he went to UT for a speaking event and the only thing at the dinner he could eat was a salad and hot vegetables. Aww. Not fun. After the event he found a grocery store and bought a rotisserie chicken. So proud of him :)

I am weighing in for the first official time tomorrow! I kind of dread this... I feel like I've done a lot, I haven't cheated once, and I had a ton of fresh vegetables, stayed away from fruits (though I did have one apple a few nights ago), and drink a ton of water. So if the scale doesn't reflect this, I'll be really upset. 

So tune in tomorrow!

Coconut recipes?


I am looking for recipes that I could use as a high-fat snack... so anybody have any recipes that incorporate high (good) fats? 


Saturday, January 21, 2012

13 Days and Counting!

I think my sweet little, baby girls have morphed into teenage boys! They eat like horses! So I've found that they do well between meals if I feed them a truckload of food at breakfast and lunch. I don't think it's an unhealthy amount of food... just a heck of a lot more than I'm used to feeding them. In addition to always watching *what* they eat, I've tried to monitor how *much* they eat. So throwing years of that out the window is proving a bit more difficult than you would think. I know intellectually that it's okay, but we are creatures of habit, so... hehe

A kind reader pointed out to me today that perhaps I am giving the girls too much fruit, which is still causing their blood sugars to spike, and thereby causing the hungriness. I know apples and cherries are pretty much fine to eat, but I'll definitely cut back on the other fruits. In fact, I told the girls today that we will be saving fruit for after-dinner desserts. Three months ago I never would have guessed we would have had swapped out our once-a-week dessert for oranges. And even more surprising is we are equally excited about it. We have made it to Food Nerdiness level, I'm afraid. 

So today for breakfast we made egg muffins with ham lining the tin (thanks to my foodie friend Kim for the idea!) and a few nuts. 

Lunch (as seen on my previous post) was a make-your-own salad. Lots of fats, greens, vegetables and proteins. Most of the kids really enjoyed it. Veronica, who is my carb-aholic in recovery, took an hour to eat her salad. She has decided that she is just not happy about not having grains. She's been giving me the cold shoulder the last few days, and I haven't been able to figure out why. Today she mentioned something about if I went away then they wouldn't have to work (today was cleaning day) and could eat. So pretty angry. Not really sure how to help her through it. I'm hoping in time it will just become normal to her. 

The other kids are pretty upbeat these days. None of us are having the same kind of issues as we were having in the first ten days of Going Primal.  I'm weighing in on Monday, so be sure to check-in and see if these way of life really does help with weight! 

We had our first lettuce-wrapped burger tonight. Interesting. I think I may be more inclined to just use a knife and fork and eat the burger without a wrap, but it was fun to sample. 

Still drinking a lot of water. I still want a Coke every once in a while, but it's really getting easier. Never thought I'd say that! ;P

 Make your own salad day in the Woods' household!

 It's cleaning day. We don't do hair on cleaning day.

Veronica's self-made salad.

She's crazy for it ... as you can see.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Day 12

I still haven't found the right balance of foods to send with the kids to school. They still get in the van at pick-up time asking for something to eat. It's really kind of frustrating. Having to find high-fat foods that also work with their food allergies AND something they will want to eat, is a bit of a challenge. But we'll get there!

If you have a high-fat snack idea that does not include dairy (butter is okay) and almonds, let me know!

I am feeling better today. My face is still like a dot-to-dot book... but I feel lighter, and happier, and much more energetic. I still want a Coke with lunch, but I haven't given in, which is a feat I never thought I would accomplish. I tried for years to give it up, but it never worked out. I could go a few days (the longest was 12 days) but as soon as I became over-stressed, I went right back to it. If nothing else, I've managed to give it up and not suffer the usual depression, mood swings, and such. I did have the headaches for the first ten days, but I'll take that over turning into the Incredible Hulk.

So Tom and I took "before" photos. Tom already looks nice and trim. The jerk. I decided I'm not brave enough to post mine. Ha! So if I have great success with Going Primal, I'll post both the "before" and "after" photos at that time.

 I've asked Tom to give me a quick email update about his thoughts on the Going Primal so far. He is away on another long weekend trip, so that may have to wait.

I still spend a lot of time in the kitchen cutting up vegetables, cooking meat, mixing up yogurt concoctions, etc. I am positive this will be streamlined in the future. As with anything new, there is always that annoying adjustment period, but after that, you become much more efficient. Plus, I find I like to make a little of many different things so that we can more quickly discover what works and what doesn't for all of our taste buds.

Does anyone who has gone Primal have any time-saving tips?  I realllly need them. My fridge and freezer looks ah-mazing! ... but the rest of my house looks like a bachelor dude lives in in it. AHHHHH!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Day ... Eleven...

I hope this is still a Carb Flu cycle, because I might be dying otherwise. Ha!

Today is the first day (since we started Going Primal) that I've really felt like I could just sleep all day. I don't feel all happy and over the moon, ready to run a marathon, or like I'm a whole new person. Yet, anyway. 

I have had a few people ask how much weight Tom and I have lost. I haven't really weighed yet. I'm waiting until Monday, which will be a full two weeks since we began Going Primal. Why? For the past five years, despite doing everything right, I haven't been able to lose weight. I would run to the scale every other day, and never see any change. So I'm not going to torture myself this time around. BUT, I can tell you that my jeans are fitting much better!

I think Tom has lost about 5 pounds as of two days ago. Not bad considering we haven't really had time to add in the exercise routine. He seems to be more accepting of the "diet" today. Could be because I made him some delicious butternut squash soup for dinner, and he quiet possibly forgot he was eating diet food. hehe

The kids are starting to get used to the type of food they're eating now. They have stopped asking "how many more days of this?"  Last night I asked them "has your stomach been hurting as much as it used to?" They all said "Nooo." Then we talked about their individual problems starting to decrease... I think they are finally understanding why we're eating "the new way" now. Whew.

So today the kids lunch boxes:

                       Breakfast: Sliced apples and Sunbutter
                       Lunch:      Ham, rolled up with either cheddar or feta cheese and strawberries
                       Snack:       Dried bing cherries and nuts

Seemed to be a hit! Except poor Regina says I forgot to give her any ham. I don't think so, I think she dropped it somewhere. I remember counting out three Ziplock bags of ham and putting them into lunch boxes. Anyway... she was starving. Good thing I hate a fruit plate mixed with fruit dip (whole fat Greek yogurt with vanilla and raw honey) and nuts waiting at home!

Dinner was a Butternut Squash soup (butter, onions, squash, chicken stock, nutmeg, salt, pepper) and leftover ham. I'm told they ate it all. Score!

I went out for the night. I went to my favorite Mexican restaurant and ordered chicken fajitas. I asked for no rice, beans, and no tortillas. They brought out a quesadilla fajita... chicken, peppers, and onions and cheese inside a tortilla fried in butter. I was drooling!

I. wanted. a. fried. in. butter. quesadilla!  So I sat there looking at this plate of awesomeness and I thought "well, I could just eat one bite of the tortilla and just really enjoy it. Well... no, I shouldn't. Really, nobody would know. Except me. Argh. I hate myself.  Hmm... Okay I could take a bite, but then ... since I don't lie... I'd have to tell the blog-world. I don't want to tell the blog-world! Oh fine, I'll just suffer while I eat everything off the beautifully fried-in-butter bread." And as I was battling with myself over this one bite of bread, the waiter comes over and says "Uhm, you alright, and everything?"  I felt like I was caught red-handed doing something very bad and quietly said "Yeah... I just can't eat the tortilla."  And I received a "you are one crazy person" look.  

So there you have it, blog world, you're keeping us honest over here in the Woods household! I both love you and hate you. 


 Delicious dessert: whipped coconut cream and melted 72% dark chocolate.

 It has Amy's vote!

Regina loves it too!
Veronica says "Half good. Half bad."