October 4, 2016

Goat Food

Well I did it folks. Cleaned out the ole trash box, got some new dirt, then some more new dirt and planted some seeds... and some already sprouted plants for self-encouragement. 

Since I last blogged we have learned that Nora also has my condition of hereditary high cholesterol (Familial Hypercholesterolemia) Meaning that despite our healthy food choices and activeness ... its still going to be high. Or so that's what I was taught starting at the age of 8 when my total cholesterol was over 300 (LDL over 200 for you people who know that totals don't mean a lot) and I began taking medication. I was on medication until the age of 27 when I stopped to try to get pregnant. Almost 20 years on various drugs including statins with side effects that are so bad that high cholesterol seems less risky than trying to reduce it via medication.  For a good 14 of those years I struggled with depression which I have now learned is a possible side effect as well. 

Since we got Nora's test results I have started my Ph.D. in biology and nutrition. Not an actual Ph.D. but Im learning everything there is to learn. Im drawing fatty acid chains people! This is for real. I am also UN-learning a lot. In 1992 the government created the first food pyramid, one year before 8 year old me is sent to the dietitian to learn how to eat the "right" way. The base of that pyramid has you eat 6-12 servings of grains. Grains that turn into sugar, cause inflammation and signal your body to create cholesterol to repair the damage of inflammation. And then there is the LOW-FAT disaster of advice. There are no studies that link low consumption of (good)fat diets to the reduction of heart disease. The study used that this advice was founded on is no longer regarded at good science. The government last year even issued a new dietary guide where total fat and food cholesterol are no longer limited... because it has no beneficial effect on weight loss or overall health, including cholesterol levels. 

How interesting. Do you know what Nora's doctor told me when we got the results? 
Put her on a low-fat diet. Many doctors and dietitians still do not know what they are talking about in regards to "healthy" eating. They are talking about what they have been told and they are wrong. I could go on and on about this forever but I can tell you what I know so far. 

  • If it comes in a box/packaging you can almost bet its not gonna help your health one bit
  • Eat fruit and vegetables ALOT -that are in season.
  • If you are going to eat meat, eat meats and eggs STRAIGHT from the farm where the animals/animal products you are eating are from animals that are living as they were intended to live, eating what they were intended to eat. 
  • You NEED GOOD fat for energy and million other things. 
  • Grass-fed butter is actually good for you. Fake butter is NOT good for you ..its all bad oils (see below). If you can't handle the dairy in butter then use Ghee or nothing.
  • Whole grains are better than partial-grains(?) they fill you up but you will be hungry again in no time if this is the bulk of your eating and it should not be. 
  • AVOID AT ALL COSTS -VEGETABLE OILS: Soybean, Cottonseed, Safflower, Corn, Canola, Sunflower Oil. Read: INFLAMMATION.
  • Sugar is the prettiest tastiest most addictive health destroying devil. Take one last look & RUN. 

Im not getting back on medication after I'm done nursing Perry. Its too risky. And Nora's not going to be put on it either. If smart eating can control our "poor genetics" then thats what we'll do. Not ready to sign up for dementia, diabetes, and depression. No thanks. I don't eat perfectly. (I may or may not have eaten 12 cookies every night for the first 5 months I was nursing) Its so much harder to eat right, but its worth it. And now I have a precious 2.5 year old reason to figure this out and teach her how to eat well too.
So its been so long since I started writing this post here is a garden update! (also amateur hour... who knew peas needed something to climb up. Added those too large trellises yesterday. oops)


Then theres the other side of things... 
Meals. Celebrations. Togetherness. Breaking bread together. Its no wonder to me that we live in a time of so many food allergies, strict diets and very difficult food choices when God intended meals to be a time of fellowship, rest, & renewal. I have recently been pressed to embrace this, the cooking of meals and inviting people in to my home to share meals. God is good like that. To lead me in a holy direction before/during a time of so much science and research about diets and health. Bread is my favorite food. FAVORITE. Man can not live on bread alone? I would like to try. (jk Jesus, I love your Word) So whatever my current beliefs about bread/wheat ... I know the breaking of something together is the key.

In my head I have a grand garden and at the end of the season we have a meal with all our friends. A Harvest. Like an annual Friendsgiving. Pretty sure my garden isn't going to feed many this year. But my goal is to gather. We may share a couple peas and some weird looking carrots but that ok. Lets learn to cook vegan or gluten-free, its not that hard. Let's break broccoli together if that what it takes.
Ill leave you with some art by my dear friend Lauren of Tone&State :

August 20, 2016

"A bit of earth"

Whoa my friends. Whoa. It has been a little over two years since I have blogged. I'm pretty sure I have written at least 15 mental posts but in a season of learning to become and mother and becoming a mother again I haven't found the right time to sit down and type it all out. Lately though, I can't shake it. I MUST write it down. I hope its worthy of your time, or at least your glance.

A quick 2.5 year recap: Nora born. Whoa. Non sleep. Then sleep. Diapers. Talking. Dinners. Groceries. LAUNDRY. No Diapers. Big girl bed. Perry Born. Whoa. NON SLEEP. Laid off. Job. Then more non-sleep. 

And that's basically it, with a whole lot of joy, tears, new friends, seeking the Lord, and reading sleep books. My brain capacity feels so much less than it used to be so bear with my 5th grade vocabulary... as I have regressed. Anyway... here we go...

Have you read The Secret Garden? Here's the part I always come back to:
“Might I,” quavered Mary, “might I have a bit of earth?” 

In her eagerness she did not realize how queer the words would sound and that they were not the ones she had meant to say. Mr. Craven looked quite startled.

“Earth!” he repeated. “What do you mean?”

“To plant seeds in–to make things grow–to see them come alive,” Mary faltered.
He gazed at her a moment and then passed his hand quickly over his eyes.

“Do you–care about gardens so much,” he said slowly.

“I didn’t know about them in India,” said Mary. “I was always ill and tired and it was too hot. I sometimes made littlebeds in the sand and stuck flowers in them. But here it is different.”

Mr. Craven got up and began to walk slowly across the room.

“A bit of earth,” he said to himself, and Mary thought that somehow she must have reminded him of something. 

When he stopped and spoke to her his dark eyes looked almost soft and kind.

“You can have as much earth as you want,” he said. “You remind me of some one else who loved the earth and things that grow. When you see a bit of earth you want," with something like a smile, “take it, child, and make it come alive.” 
As I look at my very muddy/weed forest/stray cat crap box of a garden I am sad every time. Remember when Rob just built it?! So exciting. But its a tedious process. And you have to remember to water it. And do all of the other things in life. Then there's bugs on your precious baby veggie leaves and if you spray it with the stuff from home depot is your garden then still ORGANIC?! Tough stuff y'all. 

do notice my pj pants reflection in the window
But I think there is a lot of merit it gardening. As Sarah Clarkson says in A Life Giving Home ...

"However we view vocation and occupation in this modern world, the fact remains that in the beginning, one of the primary human cares was that of the earth. To grow, tend, and, we believe, simply to behold the splendor of what comes forth from seeds planted in the ground was part of the original human identity given by God in the opening glory of a new creation. Planting a garden is a way of returning to an awareness of essentials. It is, first, a way to remember our dependence on the earth to produce the food that nourishes and heals our bodies" 

I want to garden because its peaceful. Because its the opposite of Facebook. Because I want to eat from it. Because I want my girls to love gardening and growing and to have a love for the earth. Because it is beautiful. 

I am in a season right now of really deciding what I want to "plant" in my girls. And how to plant it. But eventually I just have to plant and figure it out as it grows or doesn't. 

So hold me to cleaning up and cultivating that "bit of earth" in my home and back yard. And impart your wisdom on me! I'd love to hear your best tidbits of what works and doesn't (gardening and child growing)

Have a lovely day friends. 

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