Thursday, November 21, 2013

Art Therapy

I took an art therapy class during my second year of college. I hated it...probably my least favorite class. It felt very scripted and I felt fake. It was "art therapy", but I was graded on my art. I "didn't use enough color". They were MY expressions. It's was subjective. I didn't feel like a colorful person at the time. It made me angry. Who tells someone to express their thoughts through art and then gives them a lower grade because it wasn't what the teacher wanted?!  Therapy is about the client, or in this case, student. It turned me against the concept altogether. Like...passionately hated the topic since then. 

I watched a show on Netflix that incorporated art therapy. It seemed interesting, but I didn't think much of it. I went to the book store today and was really intrigued by the art books. After dinner to tonight I had the sudden urge to make art. 

Growing up I drew things from paper, never really creating anything original. Tonight, I had the urge to create...not because I *wanted* to make something, but because I *needed* to. I need therapy, and I'm not entirely willing to hunt down a psychologist.  I was shocked when I realized this. I feel that I have been dealing with things better...friendships, marriage, family.  I've been more direct than ever and I love it. I think that being more open has formed a path in which I want to be more artfully involved again. 

And so I pinned SEVERAL art therapy activities on Pinterest because, you know, I'm an addict. I am so excited! I've missed making art, but never really had a direction to go toward. I know art therapy isn't really a "direction", but I feel that it breaks the mindset that I have to be making art for a purpose, for it to look good, or for someone. Art is for me, though, not for a purpose, but for therapy, especially since I no longer have my piano. I still hold dark feelings toward my teacher for ruining something so important to me (I know...get over it), but she's no longer part of the process, an she can't put a grade on it now. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

Autumn Happenings

There seems to be change surrounding us. Not only are we relocating and adjusting, but everyone around us has a change in life situation going on as well. It's overwhelming!

The move from house to apartment was a great deal more chaotic than I had anticipated. I developed a migraine on the last day of the move, and I have been experiencing cluster headaches since, almost a week ago. We wouldn't have gotten everything done without the awesomeness of our friends and family. 

In addition to the migraine from hell, I had to pick up extra hours at work because my manager fell ill. I don't mind as I'd rather her be in good health, but on top of the 1.5 hr round trip everyday it was a little stressful. I mean, 1.5 hrs a day, five days a week, ends up being almost an entire work day wasted just driving!!! It could have been spent doing something productive. The drive is really the only down side of working in Bristol, though. 

We've been having minor electrical issues. There's a breaker that can't support heavy use (fridge + 2 heaters) so we are being strategic in appliance placement until the breaker is replaced.

We got the yard fenced in the other day. All of that freedom and pup wants to lay by the door! She's been able to stay on more since we're not moving stuff in and out of houses now. She's much better behaved inside now, too. We need to update the address on her tag.  There's a white husky down the road. They're best buds now <3

The cats adjusted to the move just fine. When Gir realized Diane's bed was there he made himself cozy and went to sleep. Kurumi and Tango took a little more convincing but ultimately, by the end of the night, they were just fine.

We're still tight on cash with our final utility bills coming through ($200 more than the usual total due after disconnect), but next month should get easier.  I'm trying to figure out what to do for Christmas. I have people who understand financial struggles, but a husband who loves shopping (and going over budget) for peoples' gifts.

Well, I'm going to try to nap before I'm expected to be exciting tonight. Hope you are all well! 

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

We're moving!

I'm getting more and more excited by the day.  Then on moving day I'll be like, "WTFWEREYOUTHINKING?!"  I'm hoping we'll have plenty of help.  More people means less work load for everyone overall and the job pays in pizza and beer/wine.  I mean, who wouldn't take up that offer?  I would!  I'm just going to copy and paste the email I sent to a friend because I already spelled out the pros and cons to her.  Work smarter, not harder, yea?

Some info.  It's my Papaw's basement turned into an apartment.  It's an apartment without all of the horrible apartment things we were afraid of in regards to moving into an apartment (awful neighbors, noise, terrible landlord, etc)

The following copy/paste has been edited...just FYI.

It's a cute little apartment that needs a lot of work so I'll probably been spending the next few Saturdays there working, painting, cleaning, etc.  During the following few weeks we'll be going through our stuff to downsize and start packing for the move.  I think we're going to rent a Uhaul on Saturday the 26th and try to recruit help.  We'll provide pizza for anyone interested in helping us load and unload the truck ;)

This month is going to be CRAZY. We also have a birthday party tonight so I won't be able to work on it, and we've got a party next Saturday night.  I have two songs I have to learn on piano in the next two and a half weeks for a last minute wedding gig.  I think I'm going to try to give my piano away after the 19th.  I need it until then so I can practice for the wedding.  If you know anyone who wants it (needs work) let me know.  They have to provide help and transportation, though (probably 5 or 6 people).

So, cons of the move: 
- Not as many windows...3 total. 

- Lighting needs improvement, but so does our current house. (My dad added some lights which improved it vastly...still needs more lighting, though)

- Kitchen is small.  We're discussing ways to make it useful.  There isn't really a dining area so I'm thinking we can make a fold up table that locks against the wall.  See #23:  There's a hallway by the kitchen that we are going to add utility shelving to for storage.  We are also thinking of getting a kitchen cart as a portable cutting board type of thing.  I can also get one of those cutting boards you put over the sink.

-There's no washer/dryer hookup.  However, I can use my Papaw's.  His washer is in the back of his house by his old bedroom away from everything so we won't disturb him by doing laundry.  There is also a stair case next to our entrance and a door by his washer and dryer so I don't have far to travel.  It's like the old days where you built your wash room separate from the rest of the house!

- We'll have to run a dehumidifier all the time since it is a basement and there isn't proper ventilation with only three small windows, but that's okay.  I like to have some sort of steady noise in the background.  This should help with the amount of flour it takes me to make bread also ;)

I think that's really the only major cons.  My dad pulling up the carpet and is fixing the plumbing because the toilet flooded and molded the carpet and sheet rock.  He mentioned a cover rug, but we're going to ask if we can acid wash it.

All of the construction is new so once we paint it, it should look really nice in there!  My uncle's family lived there before.  They left a ton of stuff behind that we have to clear out and there are drawings ALL OVER the walls.  It's awful.  

- There are still two bedrooms so we can maintain our current setup relatively easily.  The master bedroom is really big.  The master bedroom is down the hallway away from the main living area of the house so that's nice.  Right now our bedroom meets up with the kitchen, living room, and the bathroom.  It's so noisy! You have people rummaging in the kitchen, people using the bathroom, cats eating food or scratching in the litter box, and if I have a migraine it's hard to rest when we have company because of the living area.  We'll actually be able to afford a new bed soonish with the money we'll be saving so maybe my quality of sleep will improve overall :D  

- We'll have a fenced in yard so Melody can run around.  AND my uncle built the fence with it partly under ground so I don't have to worry about Melody digging under the fencing.  How convenient?!

- We can swim/use the hot tub any time we want because my dad lives across the driveway.

- I'll live in the tree streets again so I can ride my bike whenever I want and not worry about getting run over/followed by creepers.  This also means I can wear down Melody's energy when walking just doesn't cut it...because walking NEVER cuts it.

- We'll be right in the middle of our family.  My in laws on Ryan's Dad's side and his youngest sister live across the street and a few houses down now so we'll have access to my dad and Ryan's dad.  No more travelling to see the parents!  This also means my little sister can help keep Melody occupied :P  Last week she said "Nana, I wish you lived with us" and my heart melted.  I hugged her back and said "You have NO idea how close we'll be soon".  Then she drove me crazy.  She kept pressuring me to let her walk the dog (which she had previously done AND dropped the leash and let her go).  I told her it wasn't polite to pressure me and bully me into doing what she wants.  

- Our rent and utilities total will go from almost $900/mo to $450, electric and water included.  We'll only be paying separately for our internet which just went down because Charter is having a new promotion.  Wee!

- Because of the money saving I can afford to eat how I need to instead of settling on garbage.  I'm not sure if you've read my previous blog post, but it discusses a lot of the problems.  I'm horrible at dieting, have no will power, and struggle mentally with all of it.  I will now have the resources available to help me succeed.  I am SO excited!!  And I finally talked to Ryan about my struggles so he's been really helpful in trying to motivate me to keep active and make smart choices while I'm at home :)

- The floors are concrete.  No more creaking wood floor!  Also, because they are concrete (2 ft of foundation under us), my dad is confident that we should be well insulated in regards to heating/cooling.  Concrete floors also mean I can play DDR without it shaking shelves and knocking things over.

- I'll be 10 minutes closer to my mom which will be lovely.  I can walk Melody down to the Johnson City center to see her on my days off :D 

- Moving into a smaller place is forcing us to go through our stuff which is MUCH needed.  I'm excited and on a roll!

Though there are some cons, but the pros FAR outweigh them.  And it's only temporary (in regards to dealing with the tiny kitchen).  It's not where we're ultimately settling.  We're much looking forward to being close to family and being back in the tree streets.  And my Papaw is "tickled" (according to my dad) that we don't smoke.  


I took Melody out for a bike ride today.  She did really well to watch for the tires while turning.  She loved it.  She really has some pulling power!  I should hook a sled harness to her and put her in front of the bike to pull me up hills ;)

The piano statement still stands.  If you know anyone who wants my piano (it needs to be tuned and some restoration) let me know!  I'm trying to find a home for it after the 19th.  They have to provide transportation and moving hands, though.  It's a tight squeeze through the front door so a pulley, lift, or something is recommended as I don't think just man power will be enough.

I suppose that's all I have for the moment!  

Monday, September 23, 2013


How do you guys deal with mental barriers? I know I've talked a bit about my relationship with food as in I experience great anxiety revolving around food choices. Today was a prime example. 

I wanted something sweet so I stopped to get some caramel corn. I thought to turn around in the parking lot and leave, but I couldn't bring myself to do it. I thought I was making a conscious decision to enjoy said treat, but when I got to the check out line I felt my ears get hot and my blood pressure go up. I should have put it down, but at this point the caramel corn became a gotta have it now sort of thing. I felt frantic that an inanimate object had so much control over me. I bought it. I paid $1.07 for an anxiety attack. 

When I got back to the car I noticed a missed call from my mom. I almost didn't call her back because it would interrupt digging into my drug of choice. I called anyway. She said I sounded distracted. I claimed it was because there wasn't much to talk about, but honestly I was just irritated that I didn't have an extra to drive, one to hold the phone, and one to mindlessly transport food to my face. 

I have a serious problem. I turned down cake at a wedding celebration and was so proud of myself because I was at peace and content with that choice. Then I find myself irritable with my own mother over a dollar bag of crunchy sugar. I caught myself and corrected the behavior at the moment, but it didn't stop me from  scarfing it down when the call ended. 

I know it's all my doing and I just need to get over it, but it's so much easier said than done. At the core of it I blame my parents. They made me very self conscious about my weight while I was growing up. I blame their food choices and I fear for my youngest sister as she is stuck with similar food options. I grew up with massive amount of processed food an snacks. My mom was possessive and weird about her Nutty Buddy bars and Mountain Dew. No joke. She got really mean about it if you just asked for one. At the same time, though, processed food is really all thy could afford. Now, though I know *how* to make the right food choices, I really struggle with following through. 

It sounds silly, but I would like more than anything to eat a mostly vegan, even raw vegan diet, but I can't maintain that sort of lifestyle financially...not with my omnivore husband, anyway. It's expensive buying for two lifestyle food choices. We're looking into a different living arrangement...hopefully cheaper. If it works out I look forward to being able to participate in the lifestyle, but for now I really need to learn ti work with what I have. 

I know I'm not alone in these struggles and it would be amazing if I could find someone with a similar mindset who's made it and succeeded in their battles. 

These issues have really taking their toll on my weight in the past seven years (I've mentioned my weight loss in high school). There are days where I really feel in control and am able to happily make good, conscious choices, but it's mentally draining to keep reminding yourself to make those choices. 

I'm just tired and exhausted of this battle.  It consumes all if my time and energy. I really don't think it's any better than someone trying to quit smoking. 

That's all I have for today.  Thanks for listening to my heartache <3

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Puppy Update

Updated puppy pictures!! The most recent one is the one in my living room of her sitting all alert and stuff. Previous photos show her growth progress. 

She's awesome. And hilarious. And getting big!

Monday, August 12, 2013


I know, I know. I keep promising more regular posts. I happy a very good reason for my absence, though! I got this: 
The puppy, not the man. And I love her so freaking much!! She'll be three months old tomorrow. She looks like this now: 
She's growing so fast!! I miss this rolly belly: 
Anyway, I've been bust trying to adjust our schedule and keeping her busy puppy mind occupied. She's helped me to lose about ten pounds already (I walk her every night in addition to playing with her, etc). I would generally be excited about this, but its bitter sweet because, hey! I get to buy new bras, but hey! You *have* to buy new bras which you really can't afford. Also, I need new jeans cause mine won't stay up so I end up pooching out my stomach to hold up my pants which is not visually appealing or comfortable :(

I can't promise a post soon because of this puppy stuff, but I'll try. I've been getting most of my stuff done while she naps so I'll try to sneak in a post or two. 

I hope you've been well!!

Monday, May 27, 2013

Cone Head

I made a larger e-collar for Tango.  His old one was too short so he could still reach his wound if he tried.  This made the wound initially worse because of the constant digging and the friction of the cone rubbing his stomach.  I made his new cone 2" longer so he can't reach his stomach at all now.  We have to do supervised eating, though, because he can't eat with the new cone.  At least, I don't think he can.  It's awfully dirty like he's *tried* eating, but I'm not sure if he was successful.

I also bought some calming spray which seems to have eased his nerves about the whole process.  I adjusted the cone and napped on the couch with my legs thrown over top of him and he napped with me.  Such crowding behavior typically scares him and causes him to panic.

I looked into his illness a little more.  It's apparently a hyperimmune response.  It said it could be fleas, environmental, or food related.  It could also be genetic and have no physical trigger.  We don't have fleas.  The cats don't, either.  (Hur hur) We've gotten rid of his environmental allergens (the old apartment) so the last culprit (unless it's genetic) is his food.

Getting rid of cheap food helped his swollen lip, but now he has the ulcers on his skin.  Sort of.  They're oozy, raw, and swollen.  My understanding is that his body is sending out cells to respond to triggers.  The cells are supposed to go, fight the allergen, and leave... much like in humans with mosquito bites, etc.  His problems arises from the cells lingering around one particular area on his body so he starts itching like mad.  Then he bites and digs so much that they become open sores.

Through internet research, it has been suggested that we try an antigen or limited ingredient all natural food such as Blue Buffalo Limited Ingredient, or Natural Balance Limited Ingredient.  Another tip was that chicken is a fairly common food allergy in cats.  In trying the antigen approach, you feed the cat something it's never had, or hasn't had in a long time so we're going to try the Natural Balance Duck and Pea formula as it is a limited ingredient formula and an antigen to our cats.  They've been exposed to turkey, chicken, beef, fish of all sorts, but not duck or rabbit, and I'd be weary of rabbit based dry food.  I'm not sure why.  The thought just weirds me out.  I know they commonly eat rabbits in an outdoor life, but it's me.  I'm complicated.

We will also stop giving them canned food because we can't afford the really good stuff so I'm sure the impurities are setting off his responses.

I guess I'm going to go soak him in an epsom salt bath.

Silly fact about Tango.  As long as I'm standing in the tub with him he doesn't panic as much.  I have to be careful because his claws are terrifying sharp and long.  I also (obviously) don't sit in the water with him.  I hate wet cat hair sticking to me.  I don't even want my feet in there with him and his oozing stomach, but I want him happy and healthy so that what I'm gonna do.

I hope you have enjoyed your Memorial Day!  And I hope you've thanked a veteran <3

Sunday, May 19, 2013

New Teeth and Playing in Dirt

Hopefully...sort of.  Here are a couple of links to save me having to explain.

You can also Google remineralizing toothpaste, etc.

The basics: Teeth are bones.  Why would a broken bone elsewhere in the body be able to heal, but not your teeth?  Ryan has super sensitive teeth, we are both prone to cavities, and I don't like the ingredients in commercial toothpastes.  So we've switched up our routine!

I started brushing with activated charcoal, calcium/magnesium powder, and we bought Earth Paste which is a toothpaste made from water, clay and essential oils.  No fluoride, no glycerin, no creepy chemicals. I love it so far.  Mr. Picky even got a good first impression.  My teeth feel cleaner, and my teeth are whiter already...only 3 days in.  As far as sensitivity problems, I'll give you Ryan's update in a few weeks.

He was using Sensodyne, but studies show that it covers the problem and doesn't actually cure or heal it.  There is also potential evidence to show that fluoride promotes bone decay and that glycerin has a negative impact on natural remineralization.  Diet is also important as foods high in phytic acid, starch, and sugar feeds bacteria and promotes cavities and poor dental health.  People in 3rd world countries have better dental health than the millions of us with regular access to a dental professional.  They do not have fluoride or fancy toothpaste.  They have a diet low in grain and nature to assist them.  It's another one of those marketing gimmicks.  Companies aren't there to love you or care for you.  They just want your money.

I may be wrong, and I will let you know how this works for us.  I will also give you an update after my next cleaning because it never fails that I have horrendous amounts of plaque to be scraped off.

Onto pulling morning glories.  At the start of spring I took all of my pots of dirt and dumped them onto a tarp.  I used the tarp to mix compost into this dirt, and then I redistributed the dirt back into the pots.  Last year my crop wasn't that great because the nutrients had been used up so I thought this would help the dirt quality.  It certainly looks nice and dark again vs the pale grey it was before.  It even drains better.

Anyway, some of my pots were on the porch where morning glories were growing and the seeds fell into the dirt.  The seeds began sprouting in the pots, now in the back yard, so I needed to pull them.  I discovered tomato and pepper plants when I went to pull the morning glories!  I didn't plant least, not intentionally.  I guess there were seeds from plants that we let rot on the vine last year.  I'm surprised they grew because of all the dirt mixing and combining.  Nature is freaking awesome like that.  I found roughly 15 plants growing.  I tried to carefully separate them into 3 different pots.  I really hope I didn't damage the roots too much.  I watered them pretty good afterward because they were a little limp, too.

I still need to dig up the flower bed.  It's terribly frustrating to look at.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

A Homemade Update

I recently told you guys about my homemade endeavors and how they were going at the time.  I think it's time for an update!

I found a liquid laundry detergent that I am loving!  It has vinegar built into it as a softener.  I can't tell if it really makes a huge difference, but I've not had to use added softener or anything so I assume it does just fine.  If you're diligent you can add vinegar separately as a softener.  I'm too lazy for that.

Deodorant didn't go so well.  I've had to change it up so many times that I've given up for the time being.  The basic recipe called for baking soda, corn starch, and coconut oil.  You can optionally add some essential oil so I added lavender.  I had a horrible, painful reaction to the concoction.  It turned my sad pits into an open, sore, raw, rash of splendor.  It was awful.  And painful.  So painful.  To help clear it up I put baby powder in a sock and pat it under my arms at every possible moment, including all three breaks at work and an extra pee breaks I had to take (because my bladder doesn't like to cooperate and go at designated break times).

I cut out the lavender first, thinking that perhaps it was irritating my skin as lavender oil is a known skin irritant of sorts.  After the rash cleared up, I used the baking soda and coconut oil, unscented.  Out came another rash.  My friend suggested that the baking soda could be irritating, and recommended increasing the coconut oil ratio.  I let the rash clear up, used the increased oil mix, and still got another rash.  I diluted it even more, and not only was the further dilution still causing rashes, but it was no longer effective as a deodorant.  FAIL.

I rattled my friend's brain for another idea and she said that perhaps it was a yeast infection of sorts due to the corn starch in the mix.  I thought that was brilliant!  Until I realized that that baby powder I used to heal the rash was corn starch based, not talc.  So I'm at a loss.  Maybe I should try cornstarch, and no baking soda with the oil.  Maybe I should try arrowroot.  Maybe I'm just going to not worry about it for now.  I should also note that all natural deodorants are horrible expensive and last time I bought one I had irritation problems so I'm hesitant the take that route.

I have continued to make homemade loaf bread.  We haven't bought commercial bread almost a month now.  It's been lovely!  My aunt recently gave me a sourdough starter that I used to cook a couple of loaves this morning.  Delicious!  I am definitely going to keep this trend going.  Ryan asked for pumpernickel yesterday so I may make some when these other loaves disappear.

Automatic dishwasher detergent was a bust.  Then I successfully fixed it.  The original recipe called for borax, washing soda, citric acid, and salt.  It clumped.  Every time I used it, I would have to stab it several times with a knife or fork before I could pour it out.  I was extremely careful to not get the powder wet, thinking moisture was causing it to harden, but it was no use.  I looked up another "recipe" online and someone simply used borax and washing soda so I tried it.  There was no clumping and the dishes were just as clean...maybe more clean.  Our dishwasher has never washed glassware too well so I still wash my drinking glasses by hand, but aside from that I'm pleased!

Baking soda and conditioner to wash my hair is still effective, but my hair is starting to dry out.  I'm not sure if it's the baking soda or the weather.  It may be split ends ;)

Next step!  While I want to love Dawn dish soap, the truth of the matter is that it can't continue its existence in my house.  Yes, I know it's what they claim to use to clean the animals after an oil spill.  Yes, I know they donate money to animals causes.  BUT they test on animals AND continue to sell us products with really harmful chemicals.  Would you really expect anything less from Proctor & Gamble?  I've been shaking the same borax/washing soda mix onto a sponge for cleaning and I find it to be just as, or more, effective than Dawn so I will continue to use that for now.

I'm off the grocery store!  We're having our moms over as a late Mother's Day cook out and to give Sharon a chance to see everyone while she's here.

Happy Saturday, everyone!

Friday, May 17, 2013

Star Trek and Misc

We went to see Star Trek last night.  I loved it.  No, it's not the most thought provoking movie ever.  Yes, they're messing with old Star Trek a little too much.  No, that didn't ruin it.  Yes, it's awesome.  It started a little slow, but it got intense.  It made me cry.  Oh, Spock, why did you make me cry?

Someone told me he'd heard that it was less than impressive.  I've seen every last bit of Star Trek ever (maybe only 98%... I may have missed something somewhere), from Enterprise with Scott Bakula to the animated series, and I liked this movie pretty good.  We saw it in 3D.  I think most 3D movies are totally unimpressive, but I actually enjoyed this.  I'm not sure what people thought was so awful about it.  It obviously isn't everyone's cup of tea (earl grey, hot O.o) so I'm wondering if it's people who generally don't care for Star Trek anyway, or if it's people who love Star Trek that don't care for this particular spin off.

I won't say too much about the plot for those of you who haven't seen it yet.  I may talk about my thoughts on movie details in a couple of weeks when I know most fans have taken care of getting themselves to the theater.  I hope you love it!

I don't know about the rest of you, but I may or may not have squealed like a little girl when I found out Benedict Cumberbatch was going to be in it, and I may or may not have jumped and wiggled in my seat when he came on the screen.  With a bad guy that gorgeous, I didn't know which team to side with.  I was totally on his side until he got really mean, then he kind of scared me...but in a very good way.  Oh, dear.  He's so terrifying when he's mean.  But still soooo gorgeous and intense.  He's even more so when he's being sweet and friendly...or a sociopath.  That all being said, beautiful only gets you so far.  He's also a wonderful actor.  Total props to him.  Man, I need more Sherlock ASAP.  I would got watch Star Trek again just to watch him be a total bad ass all over again.  I don't typically swoon over actors... Patrick Stewart was my only one until I saw Sherlock.  needsherlocknowplease

Pretty please.

I'll make you cookies.

Or pie.  Whichever you prefer.

I'd probably faint and drop them.



Yesterday was a little crazy.  I woke up early to finish her painting (pictures soonish).  I didn't like it at first, but now it's grown on me quite a bit.  I loved working on the background.  I did not like working on the rose when I got to it.  It took me some time to move through the different sections of the painting so I thought that my mood affected my rose painting vs background painting.  While my mood definitely affects the way I paint, it turns out that I was just hating the brush I was using.  I switched brushes, I painted better.  Actually...I do need to fix a small part of it now that I'm looking at it again... just a lighting thing.

We had to go to Asheville to pick Ryan's mom up from the airport.  We got turned around somehow (you guys know how it is, blah), but corrected the problem quickly.  Lesson: DO NOT use the Maps app that comes standard on an iPod.  I've been taught this lesson at least 10 times, but somehow the information doesn't retain.  It's like history class all over again.

I didn't have time to clean out the fridge before leaving yesterday as I was finishing a painting and had to take the car for an oil change, so I'm off to do that now.

I also hope to play in the dirt later.  I have morning glories trying to grow in my container garden!  Retaliation shall be had.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Apples and Trees, Man

I suppose this post is appropriate as Mother's Day approaches.

I got a promotion!  No, I'm not accidentally repeating myself.  I did get a promotion...again...within the same week as my other promotion, actually.  Yep.  I was going to be the center trainer, but a position in our Quality Assurance department opened up, so I'm going to the dark side :D  I will be a Quality Assurance Specialist, because that sounds fancy and stuff...and because that *is* what the position is called.  I'm excited.  I've wanted to be in Quality for years.  Maybe it's my A type personality and tendency to get upset when people ignore the details of their jobs.  Whatever is, I'm gonna rock this!

How is this related to Mother's Day?  Well, it isn't...not entirely.  My mother works for the same company I do.  I'm certain that she is 99% responsible for getting me a job with the company in the first place in July 2007.  That's a long time for such a youngster to be with such an intense company.  I like my job, though.  I don't necessarily like working customer service or with the general public, but I enjoy the job itself so I let the other stuff slide.  Oh, I forgot to mention that my mom also works in the Quality department, but she works in a different city.  Oh.  She's also a QA Manager, not just a Specialist.  The apple doesn't fall far from the tree, don't ya know.  I'm pretty sure my new boss is banking on the fact that I'm my mother's daughter, but I'm okay with that.

My mom asked me if I felt a lot of pressure entering this position, given the amount of respect and high thoughts she gets from her (our) superiors.  The only pressure I felt was the resistance of some scar tissue against the needle while trying to stick a guy for his donation.  That was a little gross, but I made it through...the scar tissue, that is.  After all, it's doesn't hurt me a bit when I stick someone with a 17g needle.  Hur hur.  All of my sticks have done really well so far.  I even had a guy say he didn't feel a thing.  Given my extreme needle phobia in my younger days, I'd say this is a great success on my part!  Not to be cocky, but I knew I'd be good at it if I could just *do* it.  Okay, maybe that was a little cocky...but only cause I'm awesome ;)

Anyway, Mother's Day!  I can't afford to do anything awesome for the woman that birthed me, who happens to be my best friend, so I'm not sure what we'll do.  I hope I can at least see her, but I'm not sure what her plans are...if she has plans.  I'll be calling/texting her later to find out.

I start training on Monday for my job.  I managed to get certified on the donor floor much faster than I thought I would, but I'm excited to have done it.  I get to start work in the freezers next week.  I start my vacation days Thursday because my mother-in-law is coming to town.  I can't wait to see her!  She leaves town on our two year anniversary so we're going to spend time in the city where her plant leaves since we drop her off early-ish in the morning.

It is time to go to Shannon's to watch Doctor Who!  I hope you've all been well!  I also apologize if there are more typos than usual ;)

Sunday, April 28, 2013


Difficult decisions lie ahead of me. I will tell more about it as it comes up as nothing is set in stone.

Kurumi still tries to cover Charlie's scent which unfortunately involves urinating outside the litter box. My friend and I have combined our efforts in treatment and prevention. She has found a seemingly effective treatment for carpet stains and odor, and I have found some preventative methods that will hopefully be effective in stopping the behavior! So last night I decided I would clean the carpet today.

I also decided to clean the cabinet doors as they have (and have always had from what I remember) gunk build up from oil in the kitchen (hands, cooking, etc).

I decided a couple of weeks ago that I will make art my hobby again... once the house is clean and we're in maintenance, that is.

Doing Whole 30 was a wonderful decision that I am loving and do not wish to stop in the near future. I have no creativity in regards to food, but I love how it makes me feel.

Friday night we went bowling with my friend and her husband. You could also say my cousin and his wife. It's whatever floats your boat. Either way, I heart them and it was great fun and nice to do something different :)

Today is rainy and gross, but I'm loving it and refuse to let it put a damper on my mood for cleaning and productivity.

Let it be known that I am not ready for Monday, but I'm excited to have next Saturday off.

Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Wednesday Things

I've been promoted to the Center Training Coordinator for the plasma center I work for. I look forward to teaching people things.

I was discussing with my friend things that have improved since starting Whole 30. I've noticed that the lymph nodes in my neck have gone down in size. They are typically rather noticeable as I experience allergies quite often, but I haven't even experienced seasonal allergies while eating this way. My ear stuffiness has cleared up, and my husband says I snore less (if at all now). I used to spend 5+ minutes in the morning clearing out my sinuses and ears, but haven't had to do a thing in days.

I didn't sleep well last night and was kind of dragging this morning, but I ate some almonds on my first break and felt much better after that :)

I stopped by the grocery store on the way home for some produce. I've been eating so much green and not enough rainbow so I had to stock up!

I had a lavender encounter and developed a horrible underarm rash, but I finally figured out how to help it and it is slowly but surely going away. I just have to obsessively pat under my arms with baby powder every chance I get to keep them dry. I probably look silly to my coworkers.

I hope everyone is doing well! We're in the home stretch to the weekend :D

Sunday, April 21, 2013

Whole 30 Week 1

I feel like I have endless energy while doing Whole 30.  I mean, I still crash at a sensible hour, but I don't hit that mid day energy slump that used to plague me.  Even if I don't sleep much, the sleep I do get is more sound... unless the cat starts crying in the middle of the night.   I haven't really felt the need for a nap except for the first day when I got a migraine during the adjustment.

It's much easier to eat this way than I thought it would be.  The only trap I ran into was going to my Aunt's for dinner last night.  She made pizza.  Pizza is most definitely not W30 acceptable, but I was starving and verging on a headache so I had a piece.  Then I felt crappy, sluggish, and tired.  With reactions like that I will likely stick to this paleo things longer than the 30 days.

I know it said not to step on the scale or take measurements while eating this way, but I'm horribly paranoid about the success of this all too simple eating plan (now obsessive habit).  I was a bad follower and did count my calories one day... and I may or may not have weighed myself this morning. I know, I know.  Shame.  Well, I've been stuffed eating this way, thinking I've been eating too much because meat is high in calories for what it is, etc.  As it turns out I've only been eating about 1200-1400 calories a day.  I was eating 1750 and usually going over, struggling to stay under that limit while eating carbs.  I upped my protein and cut out the carbs and now I'm struggling to eat more than 1400.  It's wonderful!  I've dropped about 5 pounds so far.  I'm thinking it isn't just water weight because I drink tons of water, but it could still be a false loss so I'll let you know in three weeks when the "challenge" is up.  I have all the peace of mind I need now that this way of living works well for me, internally and externally... at least for where I am in my life at the moment.

I haven't felt this great in a long while.  Aside from the extra (almost too much) energy, my nails already feel stronger, and my restrooms visits are more regular (to put it nicely).  I don't get dizzy if I get up too quickly, and my blood sugar seems more stable.  My teeth and gums even feel better!  My sugar cravings are disappearing which I thought was impossible.  I highly recommend you look into it.

It's a more strict version of a paleo lifestyle as it's goal is to eliminate any foods that could have a negative affect on your health as even mild allergies you don't even notice can have a great impact on your sense of being.  I will "upgrade" to paleo after my month (including honey, full fat organic cheeses [in moderation], etc) after my month is up, but for now I am extremely happy and thrilled with my results.

If the weight loss is, in fact, a fluke, I am okay with that as I've realized that no one but yourself truly cares if your fat.  I would be thrilled if this was my "miracle" for weight loss, but I will be happy knowing that I've taken such good care and thought into what goes into my food and my body.  Unfortunately at the moment I cannot afford top quality meats, but I will take cheap meats over the carbs.

On another topic, a few weeks ago my manager asked if I was leaving.  I excitedly said "no" at the time.  I wish I could still say that, but sadly, as I mentioned before, my finances will not allow me to continue my employment at the company unless they give me a raise or something.  I just can't afford it.  I'm going to see what the next few weeks brings, but I fear I will making some changes... changes that I'm not quite prepared for, but as the saying goes, "you gotta do what you gotta do".

I hope you've all had a wonderful weekend.  Mine was great as I got to spend time with my best friend and some family.  I managed to clean out and organize two closets.  I've got one more to go and a few odds and ends lying around the house to put away and I'm done :)

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Whole 30 Days 1 & 2

Day one was a pretty difficult adjustment.  Breakfast was easy.   I mean, what's so hard about a veggie omelet?  Lunch was simple, with chicken and sugar snap peas.  It was my body's reaction to it that was so hard to deal with.  I ended up with a migraine by Monday night.  I don't know if it was waiting too long between breakfast and lunch to eat something, if I didn't eat enough in general, or if it's my monthly coming up in a few days (because you guys totally love reading about that).  It could be a combination of these things.

I took a nap, fixed my headache, and made dinner.  We had salmon, broccoli, and rice...well, Ryan had rice.  I had the former two.  He left some rice for me so I explained that he could have all of it (I only made a small amount).  He looked at me for a second and said, "ooohhhhh..."  He's going to have more trouble adjusting to not offering me things that I'm going to have sticking to my food choices.

Yesterday went much better.  I was reading that if you're not eating enough fats and proteins that you'll have hunger issues and not respond well so I included shredded coconut at breakfast and lunch for some healthy fats.  Best. Idea. Ever.  I forgot how much I loved shredded coconut :D

I noticed something the other day.  I don't scratch like most people scratch.  I run my hand side to side over an itch, or I push my nails away from me.  Most people draw their fingers toward them when they scratch.  I get weirded out thinking about all the skin cells under my finger nails after scratching like that.  It's probably silly, and I know there's no real harm in it as we shed and lose 40 pounds of skin in our life time so a hygienic person wouldn't be a threat to society by scratching in a normal manner, but my mind over exaggerates and enlarges the visual (like on a cereal box!) and makes it look gross.  Then I feel the need to wash my hands whether I've scratched or not.

I would love to ramble on about more nonsense, but I have to get ready for work.

Have a wonderful day!

Sunday, April 14, 2013

Whole30 and Other Things

Tomorrow I am joining a friend on a journey.  Trying to fix things around me isn't going to happen if I don't try to fix the stuff I am eating.  This won't be a baby step, though.  This is going to be a 30 day journey of jumping straight into the cleanest possible eating.  I am excited to feel further empowered.  Here is a link if you'd like to join us!

I am not buying the book or anything.  The website is extremely helpful on its own, and there are plenty of internet resources for recipes.

The only thing that really been stressing me out lately (and killing that empowerment) is our financial situation.  Every pay period we risk overdraft.  It's a battle of hoping that nothing hard posts onto the account until Wednesday or Thursday depending on which pay period it is.  And then we can't catch up or start relatively fresh because we've already having to deduct previous transactions on our most recent income.  It is terrifying, not to mention unhealthy.  If things don't look up at work I may have to look for a job closer to home (my least preferred option), ask to transfer back to my previous location (please, no), and/or move out of our house that we love so much (I don't want a sucky landlord and neighbors again *cry*).

All of this would be solved by moving to Texas, but we're not quite ready for that yet.  We look very forward to it, yes, but all of our friends are still here and we want to spend as much time with them as possible before we all leave the area.  There is even less to do where we're going that there is to do here, and we're not entirely ready to settle down that much.  I can't wait for the longer growing seasons so I can (hopefully) be mostly self sufficient in growing my own produce, have chickens, and all.  I can't wait to be able to afford to go back to school.  But, we're young, and we've got time.  I don't know how long it'll be before we go, but I know it'll be soon enough so I plan to at least try and enjoy the time we have here, financial stress and all.

At the moment, finances aside, I have three major tasks ahead of me.  I may have mentioned them, but if I have they still aren't done because they're not imperative to my survival in life so they keep getting put off, usually to hang out with the friends, etc.

The Camry needs to be cleaned.  The trunk is full of random odds and ends, including cardboard boxes, expired, but still edible, tortillas from Taco Bell (though I won't be eating them on Whole30), and water guns from the past several summers (they've been in there for the past several years).

The garage needs to be cleaned out.  It isn't much of a garage (no door, no interior walls, dirt floor, falling apart), but at least it could look more clean.  There is trash in which I can't remember its origin, old boxes, and it's ill organized.

Last, but certainly not least as it should improve the exterior of our house, is the flower bed.  There are no flowers.  It's all crabgrass, clay and weeds.  It would very difficult to fix so I plan to gut it, lay weed cloth, refill with good dirt, and start fresh.  This will still be difficult, but a fresh start is more satisfying that looking at, and trying to sanely maintain, the problem foundation.  I am sure this will provide time to continue testing the coconut oil sunscreen :)

I'm going to go play in the dirt now <3

Friday, April 12, 2013

SO Happy the Day is Over

It wasn't a "bad" day necessarily.  I wasn't really in a bad mood.  I just couldn't function as a human being.  I made careless mistakes at work, bumped into too many people, dropped things, couldn't write correct words or dates, could speak properly, and just sucked at living.

I spent three days this week in the sun and received copious amounts of rays.  I didn't all.  I make dinner tonight and I burn my finger with boiling water that ran down a wooden spoon.  It blistered immediately.  I've got it covered in aloe vera gel and coconut oil.  It's the middle finger on my right hand...on my first digit knuckle...right where it bends.  Sticking fingers at work tomorrow is going to be awful.

On a positive note, my coworkers kept me mostly cheery, I didn't have to close, I took a nap when I got home, and dinner was amazing.  Oh, and my homemade deodorant is still working wonders.  I'm trying really hard to smell a fault and I just can't find one.

Ryan's mom is visiting soon.  I'm super excited.  I miss that woman <3

I forgot to mention that I made my own automatic dishwasher powder in yesterday's post.  I'm still trying to work out kinks in the recipe.  Our dishwasher never really did all that great with cleaning, even with really "good" commercial brands.  It does better with the homemade, but not wonderful.  I still end up washing my drinking glasses by hand.

It is time to cuddle and watch Futurama.  It's so much better now that I've seen the first episode.  It actually makes sense and doesn't just look plain stupid.

I wish I had a more informative post for you.  I bet you're surprised that you actually get three posts this week ;)

Happy Friday, Everyone!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Crunchy and What Not

This whole ridding my house of chemicals thing is wonderful.  I feel better, have more energy, generally sleep better, and I've become aware of my body and its processes.  I has really allowed me to recognize and respond to situations I never would have given a second thought about.  I love it.  I would probably have more trouble adjusting if I jumped in to everything all at once, but taking baby steps has made this an easy, and quite pleasant, journey.  This has also saved me a great deal of money in addition to the physical and mental well-being aspects.

In mid January, I used a friend's recipe to make laundry detergent.  It cost me a whopping $3 to make, and I'm STILL using it three months later with plenty more to go.  My whites are whiter, my colors are brighter, and it has pretty awesome stain removal abilities (grass stains after mowing yesterday).  It even worked on dried up cat vomit (the gross, hairy, slimy, dried kind...because you SO wanted to read that).

I used beet and carrot juice to "dye" my hair.  It wasn't a noticeable dye job to anyone, but I noticed more depth to the color which satisfied my need to do something to my hair without actually doing anything drastic to it.  Note: if using a home juicer, strain the pulp before putting it in your hair.  Mmhmm...yep.

A couple of weeks ago I used up the last of my cleaning product so I began using equal parts water and vinegar.  I'm not overly fond of the smell of vinegar, but it's okay.  I kept reminding myself that it was essentially a salad dressing and that helped me mentally.  The smell also goes away when it dries.  Note for those who love hard core cleaners so you feel that your house is super duper clean: the acid in the vinegar is a natural disinfectant.  No need to poison yourself with commercial cleaner residue (because I know you don't rinse everything with water after cleaning...and because water isn't enough to get rid of all residue).  The body is made to fight off certain things.  You're fighting bacteria at home, not cooties at the hospital.  It'll be okay.  Just do it.

I also stopped using shampoo months ago.  I mix baking soda with my conditioner.  Two in one, baby.  Yes, I know the conditioner has chemicals, too, but my main concern was the stuff that makes shampoo lather.  It's icky and harmful.  How has my hair reacted?  After getting used to my hair not being silky smooth after rinsing, it's been great!  It's still super soft when it dries, it's manageable and pretty easy to style, even WITHOUT products to hold it in place, I have less dandruff and dry skin, my scalp no longer itches when I sweat, and it's super quick and easy....and cheap.  Everything I mention here will be if you hadn't figured that out.

I'm about to try a hand soap recipe...thing.  I've got to find a recipe that doesn't simply water down a commercial bought bar of soap because that's defeating the purpose.

I'm going to start making my own loaf bread instead of buying the processed garbage from the store.  I try to eat everything else minimally processed.  There's no reason not to try the bread to given how much of it we eat.

Yesterday I made deodorant... as discussed in yesterday's post.  It held strong ALL day, even through mowing the second half of the yard.  It's marvelous!  My commercial deodorant typically runs out of staying power less than half way through the work day.  I just can't rave enough about this one.  I still sweat, but that's tolerable.  I just don't want to smell.

I haven't jumped on the tooth paste thing.  My teeth are prone to cavities so I'm hesitant about replacing it, but it turns out that the glycerin in most commercial tooth pastes prevent your teeth from remineralizing so maybe it would be better to make my own.

I don't use a face wash anymore.  It's coconut oil, or coconut oil with baking soda if I need extra oil control of exfoliation.  It also, obviously, acts as my moisturizer.

Lastly, I went without sunscreen this evening when I finished mowing the yard.  I went 30 minutes without any issues.  I wore a hat and glasses to protect my eyes, but that was it.  It was also evening and not the worst time of day to be in it.  I obviously won't know if the coconut oil sun lotion will be successful until later, but I'll try to keep you updated and progress...or faults if it happens.

This isn't a chemical issues, but a lifestyle choice.  We began recycling when we moved into this house.  I never knew how much stuff we threw away until I started looking at the many things that can be recycled.  There are weeks when I put two bins by the road.  People who have recycling services offered to them, should take advantage of them.

Back to chemicals and mass market companies.  I am baffled and appalled that they use the ingredients they choose and happily market their products to the public.  They are truly dreadful and should be avoided at all cost.  We are led to believe that these products are safe and beneficial, but they are most certainly not.  We are slowly poisoning ourselves as a society, and most of us don't even know it because there isn't enough education about the issue at hand.

I realize that I have written about the improvements I've chosen to make, but haven't really discussed why.  Aside from being cheaper, and not really all that time consuming, I started because I care about my health and watched too many documentaries to not want to make a change.  I may pick topics to discuss, one at a time to help this purpose...things like aluminum in deodorant, fluoride in toothpaste and our drinking water, phthalates in fragrances, etc.

For now, though, I think I've rambled long enough.  I hope you've had a good wednesday!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

Spring is Here!!

This means one thing.  Garden!!! I mowed the yard today...well, the back yard....most of it.  I thought I was going to die.  Our yard is really dippy (previous tenants had dogs...dogs that dig), it's on a slight incline (after several passes it feels like a large incline), and we have a very basic push mower.  This year we're hoping to sell this one and put the money toward a self propelled mower so the task will be less daunting.  It started off pretty nice, though, and thankfully it was breezy out :)

In regards to sun protection, I'm going to try something new.  Sunscreen would inevitably come up on my chemical no-no list, so I started looking at alternatives well before spring got here.  The body is amazing, and if treated properly, will generally take care of necessary processes, sun protection included.  I mean, how did the primal human make it before such protection?

The low down:

Sunscreen is made to prevent your body from absorbing rays that turn cells cancerous.  Unfortunately, our bodies rely on the sun to product Vitamin D.  No ray absorption = no Vitamin D.  I learned recently that Vitamin D helps your body protect against sun damage.  You may still color, etc, but Vitamin D aids in preventing our cells from turning cancerous.  No ray absorption = no Vitamin D = no natural sun protection.  All of this sunscreen business is another money making marketing scam....mostly.  I still believe in some protection.  I wore a hat and sunglasses while mowing to protect my eyes and what not.

At the moment, I am "seasoning" my skin to the sun.  You obviously can't go out for hours and expect your skin to react kindly.  Start out slow.  I worked in the yard this weekend in 10-20 minute increments.  Today I was out for about 40 minutes.  I used a low SPF moisturizer to help for now.  I also used it so I can use up the last of my store bought moisturizer and convert completely to coconut oil.  So far, I have not experienced any burning sensations, just that nice warm relaxed sense of being :)

The final ingredient to this fix is coconut oil.  It serves the same sort of protection that Vitamin D does as it prevents cells from turning cancerous.  It also helps, possibly more so, if ingested, so I've started cooking with it or adding it to my smoothies or coffee, etc.  This is, of course, not at all guaranteed, but there is extensive research supporting these claims, and being fair skinned, I am thrilled to see if it proves true as sunscreens are extremely greasy and uncomfortable to wear.

Why don't I just buy an all natural sunscreen?  Why would you even ask me that?  You know I can't afford all of that with the $350 (not including extra gas usage and time away from home due to the drive) less I get a month since my work transfer (bitter much?).  Part of making things from scratch is to save money.  We're lucky if we break even right now.

Making things from scratch has been great fun.  I've also noticed a definite improvement in my mood and energy since using less chemicals in the house.  I'll give an update later on the switches I've made.  It is a slow process as I don't want to overwhelm myself by making everything all at once.  I also have a small stock pile of various products that I intend to use up as I did pay money for them.  I've contemplated giving stuff away, but decided against it.  It's mostly my body sprays from Bath and Body Works, but the time it will take me to use them will give me a chance to stock up on essential oils that I can use as perfume later as I can't afford to buy all of the necessary or wanted essential oils at the moment.

I hope you guys are well and experiencing warm weather wherever you may be.

Saturday, March 23, 2013


I mentioned last year (September, I believe) that there is an energy of change around us.  This was shortly after we found out that my husband's grandmother was not doing well and realized she would soon be passing.  It was the start of a series of events that greatly affected us, as individuals, and as a couple.

The events are as follows:

His grandmother *did* pass shortly after the statement.  I still think about her.  I am fortunate to have known her and to have been able to visit Texas and have her visit as many times as we did.

The company I work for transferred me from a position I loved to a position that I previously left because I didn't love it so much.  This transfer included a 45 minutes commute (vs 10 min), a $1 less an hour (compiled with extra gas usage, another state's taxes, and the federal tax increase after the new year, I make $350-380 less in take home pay A MONTH), but coworkers that I am very happy to have met.  I'm bitter about it, but at the same time, if given the chance to transfer back to my home city, I wouldn't do it.  I was growing miserable there.

Our two best friends got engaged on Christmas Eve <3

Within the past month my coworker's grandmother passed away, my dad's neighbor that I'd known since I was born (or at least very small) passed away, and deaths seem to roll in 3s and 5s so I've had this digging feeling that something bad was going to happen.  Yesterday I missed two phone calls while at work.  I was there till close so after we slowed down to waiting on people to finish bleeding (that sounds awful), I got my phone to tweet my friends.  I wanted to get some wine and play video games as it *was* Friday night.  I noticed the most recent missed call (didn't notice the first one), but there was no message or text.  Typically I would call on my way home, but something told me to call immediately.  My dad didn't want to tell me while I was at work, but I kind of pressured him.  He informed me that my mamaw had passed.  The thing that hurt the most, at first, was hearing him choke up about it.  He's grown quite emotional in the past few years, but I still think, as his little girl, that he never cries.  I tried to collect myself before anything happened, but I just burst into wailing tears when I hung up the phone.  I was a big embarrassed, but I couldn't help it.  I tried to stop it, but it just kept coming.

I ended up with a migraine, and I certainly couldn't drive 45 minutes to get home.  I would have caught a ride home with Diane, but I didn't want to have to come back to work on my day off just to pick up the car so my mom and her friend came to get me.  My migraine escalated to severe nausea and a pounding bad that it prevented me from falling asleep at first so Ryan sat with me until I crashed.  I didn't wake up until 7 this morning.  I told my dad I would visit him last night, but I didn't want to deal with everyone hanging on me and crying as I was already exhausted and miserable.  I wanted to be there for my dad mostly, but he had support around him.  I wanted to be there for my papaw, but he's got his kids and prayer.  My understanding is that he had prayed for her as she had been suffering on and off for the past few years so I guess he is at peace with it.

She passed in her sleep, by the way.  It's beautiful, really.  I wish everyone had the opportunity to just...go to sleep and not wake up.  I think I'm mostly torn up because I wasn't expecting it.  She hasn't been in the hospital for weeks with failing organs or disease.  She never really got frail.  She still looked so lively.  She had slowed down and mostly sat in her spot in the kitchen, but I still thought of her as a strong person.  I mean, she raised my aunts and uncles.  I guess her body was just tired and done.

I am sad for my papaw as he had to come to the conclusion of her passing when he went to wake her.  I am sad for my dad who's never really lost anyone that he has deeply and truly cared about.  I am sad for her brother and my aunts and uncles.  I am sad for my youngest sister as she is quite young and will never have the chance to sit and listen to her experiences and advice.  I am sad that I won't get to talk to her about her plants and birds, or that I will never get to play piano for her again.  I am sad that she will never get to see my children or teach them the things she taught me.  I am sad that I won't get to share my successes with her.  I miss her so much already.

I woke up crying this morning.  I didn't even know it was possible to wake up already crying.  Because of this, I suddenly look like I'm 50 years old with no sleep as my skin has developed an odd color, and I have horrendous bags under my eyes.  My mom told me I could call her no matter what time it was.  I started to when I woke in the middle of the night, but I didn't really have anything to talk about.  I just wanted to sit with someone and Ryan was asleep.  I am thankful that I was surrounded by Diane and the coworkers I happened to be with last night when I found out.  I love my work family.  They're so wonderful <3

It is early, yet.  I'm going to try to get some sleep before the day expects something from me.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Finding the Time

I've made a list of things to talk about.  The problem is finding the time to talk about them.  Rest assured, there will be a string of posts soon!  No more than 1/day, but in general I will be posting more. I may spend my off day writing several posts and simply take a few minutes to edit and post one every day/few days...much like my meal planning lately.  I mean mass cooking foods so they're ready for the week...nevermind.  You get it.  I know.

I hope you are all well on your journey <3

Sunday, January 20, 2013

New Year, New Ways

Initially I told myself that I would not make a resolution because I never keep them.  It seems that everyone is talking about wanting to lose weight.  This was what kept coming to mind when  thinking about *my* resolution, but in thinking about it, being overweight is a symptom.  I'm overweight because I eat too much processed garbage.  I theorize that I am overweight because I stress too much.  My weight is a symptom of my not taking care of myself as I should.

I watched Hungry for Change.  It is a documentary about the "food" we eat.  Most of the stuff on the shelves are food products...not actual food.  They are so full of chemicals and void of nutrients that our bodies don't recognize it.  Also, according to the documentary, 80% of that "food" has a flavor enhancer (not just MSG) to make it addictive so we keep buying the product.  I mean, that's the whole reason for the large businesses to make to fill their greedy pockets.  They are not interested in the health of their customers.

Also in this documentary, they discussed stress.  When your body is under stress it releases cortisol.  Cortisol is a natural steroid.  Steroids make it near impossible to lose weight no matter how little you eat. This is why most people who take steroids for pain, such as Prednisone, gain weight, even naturally thin people who have not changed their habits.  They also stated that the best way for your body to metabolize cortisol is in deep sleep.  So, I am trying to stay calm (much easier said than done...I've stopped drinking coffee for the most part to avoid being irritable) and I refuse to feel bad about napping, especially if I did not sleep well the night before.

I am not telling myself that I cannot have something.  Instead, I focus on adding the good stuff, as it helps to crowd out the bad.  I remind myself that plants are wonderful and healthy.  I have already noticed a decline in craving for lesser healthy foods.  A friend reintroduced me to smoothies.  I have an amazing blender.  I should be using it!  I have been packing my lunch box with produce, including higher calorie foods such as avocados to keep me satisfied throughout the work day.

Something I noticed in my efforts to include more produce is that I tend to buy more than I can eat.  Instead of simply being sad and sending it to the compost, I am using it as an opportunity to intake more nutrients through juicing.  If it's something that can go in a smoothie, I shall freeze chop and freeze it.  This was probably and obvious solution to the rest of you, but it just occurred to me last night ;)

I need breakfast suggestions.  I tend to do better with a heavier breakfast.  I wish oats kept me as full as they should, but they simply don't.  I LOVE oats, but they run out quickly, and sometimes they upset my stomach.  I guess it will just be an adjustment period as I *used* to eat oats for breakfast.  I like the idea of eating as raw as possible, so I will probably throw together overnight oats.  This will also speed up my morning routine by not having to cook anything, woo!

I hope everyone is doing well.  Work  Financially we're making it work for us.  That reminds me, any frugal living ideas out there?  I'm in the process of removing chemicals from the house and making my own cleaners, etc.  Any others ideas would be wonderful!