Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Birthday Season Begins

March begins a long string of birthdays and anniversaries in our family. Of course starting with ME :) I'm such a birthday geek. I truly love that I'm older and wiser (lol), fitter and healthier, happier, blessed and ALIVE!

I own the WEEK of my birthday! Just as my boys all own their weeks. I decorate rooms. I make cupcakes for breakfast. We open gifts in the morning. We take off work. We take half days off school. We eat our favorite foods. We celebrate!!!

So last year at this time I was freaking out because we were paleo and I had to find something to make. These are our favorites for birthdays:

Chocolate Ganache Bacon Frosting by Paleo Spiri

This was Dawson's bday cake from last year using the two receipes above. My frosting was lighter because I whipped paleo whipped coconut cream into it. Yum!

Chocolate Avocado Pudding by The Primalist 

Banana Cinnamon Bun Muffins by Multiple Delicious 

These awesome little cupcakes were used making the above two receipes. I made sure to chill the pudding before piping it onto the cupcakes. Such a good mix. These have gotten great reviews from paleo and non paleo alike. 

So for this year's birthdays I may use some of the old and some new stuff, as there is so much out there. Planning has started. I do know that for my birthday treat it's going to include Chocolate Avocado Pudding. Yes I make my own :)


Friday, February 21, 2014

Family Sugar Detox

So a few weeks back our family set out on a 21 Day Sugar Detox. It wasn't a huge adjustment because we eat pretty clean paleo as is. However we like our fruit, the boys like their cereal and muffins, but we don't overdo it. Charlie, the youngest, likes nuts for a snack pretty much daily. Oh and I can't leave out the fact that I prefer honey in my coffee, daily if I could.

Our goal was to cut back sugar where we didn't need it and to make other choices. During this time we also cut back on our starchy carbs and wanted to be more intentional about when and where we ate them. The goal was not perfection because that's where you'd loose us all. We aimed to improve a few areas that we can maintain when the detox was over.

One week in my son's friends mom dropped off an awesome Philippino rice / veggie dish for her birthday. It was a dish they made for good health and wanted to share with us. Ummmm yeah I'd never turn that down. We ate it and enjoyed it in good health. We also had a bit of goat cheese to use up so we made paleo pizza with goat cheese later that day. Might as well get it all in right?

At this point I was going to restart our detox but after talking to my husband we both agreed that we were doing this for long term change and at the end of the day we had eaten healthy. It's not like we had a drop in at DQ for the afternoon. So we continued on with the clock.

Later in week two there was a co-worker celebration at work which I have no issues avoiding as I've been doing it so long. I quite frankly don't want any of it anyway because of how it makes me feel. There was fresh fruit and that looked awesome so I took a bit. Then CRAP I realized I'd already had my piece of fruit for the day, according to the detox. Again moved on not resetting the clock as I'd eaten healthy.

The final straw came the week of Valentines. I had a workout one evening that week and early in the afternoon I was just feeling off. I had eaten a proper breakfast and lunch. I remembered I had an RxBar in my bag (always have one) so I caved and ate it in the interest of feeling better. Wow did I feel better. I am learning how to listen better to my body on what it needs and doesn't need. Like as much as I truly, truly, absolutly adore having honey in my coffee, and having 3 cups a day, my body does NOT like it. Cutting back to 1 cup per day and only honey once or twice on the weekends....my body likes that.

So on Valentine's Day we ended our detox 3 days early. For us and our goals it was successful. We found that we like green apples and green tipped bananas as a sweetner in our baked goods. We are ok with 1 or 2 pieces of fruit each day. Starchy carbs for us are better in moderation, and best when we use them before and after workouts. THat doesn't mean we won't have them other times, I'll just plan better.

So in the end it was a great 3 weeks for us with positive changes, which was our goal. Would I put my family through it again as a whole? Probably not. The reason why is we eat so healthy as is that sweets are truly kept to a minimun and through this process we learned more where the sugar was hiding and adjusted. Will I apply what we've learned and perhaps enfoce some stricter weeks if needed? Yes. But overall if we find that good balance and keep with it we shouldn't to do a a detox again.

Would I recommend others do one.....yes! This along with a Whole30 are great tools to reset when you get off track. This is the second sugar detox I've done. I've also done two Whole30's in the last two years. Again they are great tools to reset and tighten up when you get off track, come back from vacation, etc. But my believe overall is regardless of vacation, party, etc. we live / eat a paleo lifestyle so I tend not to stray to far from it even on special occassions because it will kick me in the head every time. So by staying on track and not straying too far we don't have a need to keep doing them.


Friday, February 14, 2014

Raising a Natural Baby: Bottom Cream

By: Andrea

When a baby is born we all go buy butt cream because it is a good chance the baby will have diaper rashes. My first child I used A&D zinc oxide cream. She was breastfed for 3 months exclusively and mixed breast milk/formula for another 2-3 months and then formula only until she was on solid food. Diaper rashes were a part of it and we only used A&D cream.

I started to use Coconut oil as I read the uses for that and found that it could be used for bottom cream. After about three weeks with occasional redness in his diaper area I started searching for another natural cream to use.

In the meantime I found Red Clay toothpaste when I stumbled across an article for the benefits of Red Clay in our diet. http://www.clayremedies.com/Info_About_Edible_Clays.html 

I searched for a way to put this into our diet and I found it in toothpaste. I was so excited because I was eliminating fluoride from toothpaste in our home. More on that subject in another post.  While finding that I found a Redmond Red Clay First Aid cream.  

This led me to thinking that it could be used as a bottom cream for diaper rashes, http://www.redmondclay.com/.  This cream can be used for anything and it works! I use it on E’s bottom whenever I see a red area and within the time until his next diaper change it, most of the time, heals his redness. I find it cheapest on amazon.com. I use this for everything from scrapes, itching (on my first kid), to dry skin and chaffing. This cream comes hydrated so it’s easy to use. It also comes in a powder form that can be added to water to make a thick or thin paste to add. The best part is that when it soaks into the skin it has benefits internally. That’s amazing stuff to add to any natural child rising. 

Aunt Yvonne adding her two cents (Annie is working and not answering her text about me wanting to add a cute baby photo)....Please tell me this baby doesn't have a happy bum!?