The Fruit Flush…3 day detox

14 07 2008

Okay I am on day one of the 3 day fruit flush.  This is a 3 day plan to detox your body of all the nasty build up…artifical sweeteners, colorings in foods etc.  Also, it is to give your body a kick start with fat loss.

So I am on day one and I have to drink this protein mix every two hours.  It gives you all your calories and minerals you need for the day….it just tastes horrible!!!  Then for dinner we have 3-6 cups of fresh (raw) veggies with olive oil and lean chicken or fish with it.  Today is to prep your body for the flush that will take place on day 2 and 3…for me that will be Tuesday and Wednesday.

I will let you know how it goes….good news is that Dave is doing it with me….nothing like a spouse helping you along.

Trans fat, Health and Little Ones

15 05 2008

I have been trying to be a good steward of my kiddo’s and my husband’s health by making our home Trans fat free and  White Flour free.  This has become a harder task then I thought it would be.  The whole trans fat thing is so hard to understand….Does 0 g. of trans fat the same as trans fat free?  I stilll can not find a report that lists this!  Also, I buy only whole wheat breads, but I make a lot of breads as well and I haven’t found any recipies that don’t use any white flour in them.

TIP: Did you know that in all baking recipes you can use 1/2 whole wheat flour and 1/2 white flour (make it equal the total amount of flour the recipe calls for) and not have to change the recipes at all?  That is how I make all pancakes, muffins, cookies, cakes etc.  Ask Dave’s friend and Brian and he will tell you the chocolate chips cookies taste even better that way.

So, I am on a mission that seems endless!  I know that it is, but I feel very overwhelmed by it all.  Not just the food we eat but the impression I am making on my kids.  I don’t want them to fear food or fear fat.  Neither of these things are bad.  I want them to have a healthy understanding of the foods we eat and what they do for our bodies.  I want them to love the foods that God gave us to enjoy, but I also want them to understand why some foods in big quantities are not good for them.  I also want them to respect their bodies which one day I pray will be a temple of the Holy Spirit.

Now here is the hard part… do I show and teach them without helping a long an eating disorder?  Here are some things we are doing:

1. Allow them to have the fun foods (fries, chicken nuggets etc.) but we choose the location.  Chick Fil A was ranked #1 fast food chain by Men’s Health because it have no trans fat and not one of their combo meals has over 500 calories!  Wow!

2. One third of our grocery money is on fruits and veggies.  This makes it so we have 2 veggies at each meal, one meat and a complex carb.

3. Only buying whole wheat foods.

4. Not telling them EVERY reason why I don’t want them to eat certain foods.  They are told that we are to fill our bodies with healthy foods and treat our bodies to “junk” foods.  This way they don’t say something to someone else that is eating something and they don’t fear the foods.  As they grow we will teach them about different fats etc.

5. When I go out to the gym they will tell you “mommy is making her heart strong”.  We never say we are trying to lose weight or that mommy or daddy needs to lose weight or we need to ‘get in shape’.  We make sure this is NOT talked about in front of them.  We want to make sure they have a very healthy attitude about body image especially at this young age.

Now, this is not enough, if you have any ideas please post them, I would love to hear them!

Fot Those Who Just Couldn’t Wait to Know….

14 03 2008

Okay, the truth is only one person probally was really wanting to know and he already knows :-).   I got the job!!!!  Yeah, God is so good.  This looks like it is going to be a really good fit for my family.  I will do 2-3 shifts a week and NO Sundays!!!!  

 Thank you to everyone that kept us in your prayers.

God Is So Good

11 02 2008

Well, we had Gracelyn’s Dr. appointment today and things went really well. Regardless of what the doctors had to say, I knew that my God is good all the time.   The did x-rays of her hips and they came back looking great.  Her range of motion is still not 100% on her left hip, so the dr. wants to see her back in 3-4 months to re-do the x-rays.  We are not out the woods completly, but we are steps from the edge!  Praise God. 

 If she starts to limp again or walk funny we are to bring her back in earlier.  The dr. did say that many children seem to not have it (expecially because Grace is so young) and come back a few months later and have it show up on the x-rays.

Thank you to everyone that prayed for my little girl! 

Stewardship: Meal Planning and Saving Money at the Grocery Store

15 01 2008

Okay, I want you to know that this can be a little overwhelming at first, but once you get the hang of it it will come naturally. Meal planning takes me about 1 hour every other Sunday afternoon. I sit down after the kids are napping, pull out my cookbooks etc. get me a cup of tea and go at it. I plan everything from breakfast to snacks. Here is a little view of how I do it…..

1. I print off meal planning sheet (if someone can tell me how to link a word document to this I will post it ASAP)

2. I pull out cook books and recipes

3. I look to see what is on sale at Meijer (local food store I shop at, they even do free antibiotics for the 8 most common ones!!!, I will post more on ways to save with your kids in another post).

4. I start filling in the spaces on my meal planning sheet. The sheet has a place for breakfast, snack, lunch, dinner and snack for everyday of the week. When I fill in a space, for example, stir fry for dinner on Monday night I write down every ingredient I need to buy from the store on a separate piece of paper. I do this for every meal and snack. For Tuesday night I put what we are having for dinner then I write what I need to buy for it on the same sheet of paper I did for Monday night (this becomes your shopping list).

Now to keep with being good stewards of our family’s health we need to make sure we are getting them every food group etc. So for example I would write (in the Monday spot for stir fry) Rice, Mixed Veggies, Chicken and fruit salad. This gives them their protein, veggies, carbs and fruit making it a well rounded meal. I also fill in their snacks the same way! I will try to post later next week a list of good “snack” ideas for kids that include a quick sugar, carb and protein.

After you have done this for EVERY meal and snack you have completed your grocery shopping list. Now when you go to the store do not venture away from this list. If you do you will over spend and end up with lots of stuff in your house you don’t need. Also, be honest with yourself. Do you need a new meal every night of the week? We have a left overs night once a week. I also use leftovers from dinner for lunches later on in the week. This way I don’t have to buy a bunch of lunch foods everyweek.

A few tips to help this work are to write the cookbook and page number with the meal you are planning. Also, don’t over do “snacks” etc. I plan on two desserts a week that I make; we then only have a little bit everyday or none on some days, keeping our empty calories in check.

I plan my meals out in two week increments, because that is when I get paid. You may have to make your list for one week at a time, which if fine, do what works for YOUR family. Also, I make almost everything my hand! This keeps my grocery budget at 225 dollars a month for a family of 5 (and that includes all personal items and cleaning supplies). I don’t buy pre-made rolls in the refrigerator section, I make them in the bread maker, I do the same for pizza crust etc. Instead of buying the frozen crock pot meals at the store, go buy all the ingredients and make it yourself, you will save TONS of money a year. A way to think about it is……prepackaged saves you time but cost you money. If you want to keep your budget in check try making most of your meals by scratch.

Also, stock up on items you use regularly when they go on sale. We use a lot of flour and sugar in our home, so when those go cheep I stock up. We also have a meatless meal a week; this makes me get creative with vegetarian meals and saves on money.

Stewardship: With my Time

9 01 2008

As a stay at home mom of 3 children 3 and under I seem to never have enough time in the day. This past year I put into practice making sure I get everything done. Now I am not saying this is in a prideful type of “get everything done” way, I mean this is a way to serve my family.

First I started with my priorities. I listed them in order of what I needed to get done everyday. My list included making meals, spending time with God, playing with my kids, doing housework, running errands and home schooling. After I made my list I then made a daily schedule of what our day looks like. After that I filled in everything the kids need during the day.

I then listed all the chores I have to do everyday. For example, I empty and load the dishwasher everyday, sweep the floor, tidy the bathroom etc. Then I listed things I have to do weekly. For example, change sheets, dust, clean the bathroom, vacuum etc. I then make a weekly cleaning schedule of what I need to do each day of the week. I have to do 2 loads of laundry a day to keep up with my family (that is 14 loads a week, 2 per person, towels and cloth diapers). Now that I had my cleaning schedule I felt like a HUGE bolder was lifted off my back. It is easier to relax in the evenings with my husband when I know I have gotten what I needed to do that day done. As a mom chores can seem like they are never ending, with this system I feel like I can “leave” my job and enjoy my family.

With my time I also needed to make sure that I was doing things to save time while doing my housework. When it comes to laundry I found that if I clean the clothes that all go in one room together I save hours a week! For example, when it comes time to wash the kid’s clothes I go into Isaac and Grace’s room (they share a room) and I gather their clothes and wash, dry and put them into ONE laundry basket. Now when it comes time to put their clothes away I just walk into their room with their basket and put the clothes away. This keeps me from having to run all over the house putting things away. It is so much easier to wash and put the towels away when they are all together.

When it comes to my chores I have noticed that it helps to have them all laid out. On the day I wash the floors I also clean the bathroom because I already have the cleaning stuff out. On the day I dust I also vacuum etc.

Now that you have your schedule figured out for your time you also need to remember ONE very important thing!!! DO NOT let your kids go all day without you playing with them. This may sound really silly to many of you, but if you really think about it, it is really easy to be doing your stuff and just let them play by themselves most of the morning etc. It is easy to have them play in their room while you clean the kitchen or watch TV. while you do the dishes etc. To help you not do this sit down with your kids and play for about 15 minutes, then go and clean for about 15 minutes, then repeat. You will find that your kids come less often and interrupt you because they know that you will return shortly and play with them some more.

When it comes to your time with the Lord you need to make sure you are having it EVERYDAY! I am the first to admit I can easily get busy and forget to have my time with the Lord. Find a time that works for you and keep it. Think of it like a “date” with the Lord. We wouldn’t stand up our husbands if they invited us out for coffee, right?

Now that we have covered being a steward with my time, check out an older post I wrote about on Contenment. You may find it helpful as well.

Why We Don’t Do Santa

17 12 2007

I know this is a topic that can get very heated and can raise some emotions, but I wanted to share why we have chosen not to do Santa with our children. This is an issue that Dave and I visited many times before making out decision. Now that Isaac is almost 4 years, Grace is 2.5 yrs and baby Owen 5 months, we are very happy with our choice.

One of the reasons we wanted to not do Santa was to be able to point our children to Christ. Now I know that can be done while still doing the pretend of Santa, but for our family we wanted it to be more. We wanted Christmas to be about how our sin caused our Savior to have to come to earth as a baby and then die on the cross so that we could spend eternity with God. We wanted Christ to be the excitement of Christmas not the “torture” of Christmas. What I mean by that is we wanted our kids to wake up on Christmas morning with such excitement that it was Jesus’s birthday! We didn’t want them to have so much excitement that Santa was coming that church and daddy reading the accounts of Christ’s birth be torture for them. We wanted Him to be the excitement all around. We wanted our kids to know more about the Christmas story than the story about Santa. This doesn’t seem to be the case in too many churches now a days. It seems that so many Christian children still don’t know basic things about the birth of Christ.

Another reason is that we wanted to instill in them the love for Jesus and not the love for the things they will receive. This has been SOOO hard on us! We have had such a hard time keeping greed from setting in on Isaac’s little heart. It is getting better everyday as we explain that Christmas is not about him, but about how God sent Jesus to die for our sins and it is His day, not ours. Isaac is doing much better about telling us that “Jesus is so nice to share his birthday with us, I even get gifts on His birthday”. He is starting to see that it is about Jesus.

Another thing that bothered us is that you can replace “Jesus” with “Santa” in many songs and they become “doctrinally sound” enough for young children. For example, You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout I’m telling you why, Jesus Christ is coming to town. He know if you are sleeping, He knows if your awake, He knows if you’d been bad or good, so be good for goodness sake……etc. These songs make Santa sound like Jesus, we don’t like that.

The last reason we decided we didn’t want to do Santa was because we didn’t want to be in continual lies with our children. I heard a mom talking to her child at the YMCA the other day and it bothered me. The child was asking how Santa was going to get in their house because they didn’t have a fireplace. The mother kept making up little lies to cover another lie over and over. Her curious little girl had that mama digging herself deeper and deeper. We don’t want to lie to our children; we want them to understand that when we tell them something they can trust that we are telling them the truth.

Now, my kids know the story of Santa. We have just never talked about it as anything more than a story, just like stories about Winnie the Pooh or The Little Mermaid. They just think of Santa as a story about some kids getting presents.

I hope everyone has a very God honoring Merry Christmas, from our home to yours!
Merry Christmas!