Friday, August 29, 2008

Food Additives

How do they effect our children????

Here is a small story about WHY and HOW we changed our eating habits!

Our 3rd child Shayla is a very beautiful little girl, She is tall and thin with long dark hair and beautiful blue eyes. But for many months starting around the time she was 3 1/2.... She was NOT so beautiful at times, and I am not talking LOOKS! She was un-managable alot of the time (and I am not talking spirited child here, we have one of those and she was not like that!) By the time she was alittle over 4 yrs old, I couldn't take it anymore... she was mean to not only me and my husband, but other adults too, which does not fly very well in my house! I started reading more on oppositional defiant disorder. (I had in the recent past worked with several children as a PCA who had been diagnosed with ODD and had already done alot of reading and such) The Symptoms Shayla most showed were....
*Losing Temper (don't most kids...LOL!)
*Arguing with adults (ok even the spirited ones do this, but they refer to adults other than their own parents... Shayla was even hitting and being abusive to adults in our lives)
*Refusing adults requests and defying rules (I know..... lots of kids do this, but she was going beyond the norm!)
*Blaming others for own mistakes (she would trip on her own feet 5 feet away from you and turn around and punch you because it was YOUR FAULT)
*Deliberately annoying other people (OH, how she LOVED to piss of the other kids in our family)

AND our top concern was that my brother was Diagnosed with ADHD when he was 6 yrs old... He also had ODD and becaues my parents didn't do much (like when he got EXPELLED from school in 2nd grade for 'kicking the crap' out of a teacher) they just sent him to a school that dealt with ADHD.... NOT A GOOD IDEA!) His ODD slowly turned into conduct disorder which leads to getting introuble with the law.... THIS, I do NOT want for my daughter!!!!!!

OK, soooo where is this story going???????

In January we had alot of testing done at our school district. It showed her to be emotionally reactive, and have aggressive behavior. It also showed her to be VERY MILD Pervasive Developmental Problems (the VERY bottom of the Autism Specturm), and Oppositional Defiant problems. (NOTE: I have worked with special need children for 15+ years.... I don't like labels and won't allow her to be labeled until further test is/would be done)

After all of her testing, I decided to try a small diet change with her... I removed RED #40 from her diet..... it was hard at first with EASTER coming and all.... but slowly we made the change and quickly her behavior changed..... SOOOO after more and more research online, we decided to TRY very hard and cut out things like HFCS, all dyes, Preservatives, etc....
I started baking ALL of our own breads (I did this often anyways, but still bought the SANDWICH bread) We stopped buying the REG. cearals (so sad for my kids, LOL!) and only bought organic because it is the only ones to have NO crap in it!), We then moved to taking out all TRANS FAT STUFF
****SIDE NOTE**** even if it says 0grams per serving, if it says Hydrogenated oil in the ingre. THERE is TRANS FAT in it!
OK, so after months of the diet change, we are all happier, EVEN our SPIRITED #2 child Lucas is much better to be around (he hasn't thrown himself around on the floor like a limp noodle sinch school go out and we have been in charge of his diet!)
BUT the best news of all.... SHAYLA is doing much better, she still argues, but she doesn't hit and kick anymore..... She hasn't ripped her blinds off the walll since the big change of diet (thank goodness!), and She just seems happier! She is still alittle off (as some say) and alittle different than our other kids.... She talks to herself ALL THE TIME, laughs at inappropriate times, and still does some self stimming hand flapping... BUT over all, we are very happy with what a diet change did for our family!

SOOO, you want to know where to start..... here are a few small changes to try!
~Switch to preservative-free bread
~Avoid artificial colors
~Avoid High Fructose Corn Syrup

Try it for just a few weeks and keep a journal of things you find different! Then test the waters and give your child something with RED #40 in it.... (this has the biggest effect on our Shayla, I liked to test it when my husband didn't know I did it.... after she would go to bed he would say "WHAT THE HECK DID YOU FEED HER TODAY???"

If you want to read more, this is a great website to start with!

If you have any questions, feel free to leave it in the comment section!

Thursday, August 28, 2008


OK, after you finish reading this challenge, I want you to go into ONE of your kitchen drawers and DECLUTTER it! Take out anything that
***is Broken
***is Missing Pieces
***is Never Used
***is Something you don't know HOW to use
***you have DOUBLES of and DON'T really NEED a double
***you DON'T LOVE
***you hold onto for the 'SOMEDAY' moments

NOW, throw those things out or give them away! And, do it quickly before you change your mind and slowly start returning them to the drawer!

THERE.... doesn't that feel better???? An Organized Kitchen is a HAPPY Kitchen!

Leave a comment and let me know WHAT you decided "HAD TO GO!!!"

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

OH, I am soooo tired!

WOW, there must be something in the air today, because the kids have been the worst they have been all summer.... I haven't yelled in MONTHS.... (we started 'Love And Logic' parenting in March and I have been doing really well with it.... BUT today, I fell off the PLAN per say and yelled at the kids... UGH! They were killing eachother after all.... but that doesn't make a very good excuse.... SOOO needless to say, I am VERY tired from getting soooo upset! I think I will crawl into my craft room and sew something to make me feel better. (I already ate a chocolate bar and that didn't work, I KNOW.... :-( I should have really worked out or something instead.
We did finish canning all the apples we had picked ---- Another 28 quarts DONE! Of course we have to give some away to the people that let us pick, but that is OK, because we are going to pick more and more apples for the next 2 months! CAN you say 100+ jars will be canned this year!
Alright, better run.... The eggplant I am cooking smells yummy! (We have never had this before, so it is something NEW TO ME!) Thanks to Mary from carolinamomma blog for the recipe (it is from my FAVORITE recipe site too!) I will let you know how it turns out!

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Finding Heavenly Home makers LAURA!

I know it sounds sappy... but I am sooooo very grateful for finding Laura from Heavenly Home Makers . I don't have a lot of friends who EAT like we do, but I do have many friends that roll their eyes at me and say things like "You do know you can buy bread right??" or " WOW, you must have TOOO much time on your hands if you can cook food for you family everyday" or "Why on EARTH would you make that??" or my favorite "What do your kids get to eat if you don't feed them this that and the other thing???" (referring to dyes and HFCS)
I am just grateful for finding Laura's Blog and finding all the other blogs linked to hers! I have enjoyed every blog I have read and visit them often!
SOOO thanks Laura for such a great blog and the inspiration to start my own!
Happy Tuesday everyone!!!!

I am listening to the Best book on tape....

It is called "Does this clutter make my butt look fat? It is such a great book! I love the author "Peter Walsh", he is the dark haired man from Clean Sweep.

He totally has the same outlook on life about being over weight and about Organized spaces... 2 of my top loves (nutrition and organizing!) It is a MUST read!

It is really making me want to start my own Organized Kitchen/Organized Health business!
I will have to write more about that later! Have you read or listened to this book? What were your thoughts????

Monday, August 25, 2008

What do you do when you get a saturday off????

Ok, here is what I do.... I pack up my kids and husband and drive to where we used to rent while we were building out house.... they have an apple orchard they do NOTHING with... NOT KIDDING... NOTHING!!! They don't spray and they don't pick....

SOOO, we go and pick 140+ POUNDS of apples (red barron and paula reds... becaue they are the ones ripe right now!)

AND we also pick 35+ pounds of Pears (their pear trees are SAD this season due to a bad spring in MN!)

SHOWN in the sink above is just 1/4 of the apples and in the bag below are 1/2 the pears

SOOOO.... what do you do with all of these apples????

OF course, MAKE APPLESAUCE! and LOTS of it!

First you recruit your husband to do all of the cutting and throw them in to a boiling pot of water

NEXT... Get your kids to help you send them through your Kitchen Aid Strainer (they love watching the WASTE come out the end!)

THEN.... you keep the apple sauce VERY WARM in a pot until it is almost to the top (that equals 7 quarts in my pot)

NEXT..... Fill Jars leaving head space and put the lids and rings one.

THEN.... Put them in to the boiling hot canner for 25 min.

AND there you have it 28 quarts of yummy apple sauce (the 28th is in the fridge, we didn't seal it, we wanted to eat it the next day!)

This equals only 1/2 of the apples and pears we picked. The rest is out in the garage WAITING to be made into yummy apple sauce!

NOTE: I know the apple sauce looks PINK! The Paula Reds were REALLY pink inside! Also, the very thick pink syrupy looking water that the apples were boiled in, is in 2 quart jars in the fridge, I am going to experiment with using it to make SOMETHING with... maybe cake!!!???

Friday, August 22, 2008

OH, where does the day go????

Today is almost over for me since I have to leave for work in 2 hours.... I work on a dinner train part time as a Car Captian (Chef on the train and boss of my section). SOOO 2 more hours to finish cleaning up this house (2 bathrooms done and the Laundry room is TOTALLY cleaned from TOP to BOTTOM... that happens only a few times a year :-) Also need to make 5 beds since it was HAPPY SHEETS DAY (that is how I have answered the phone all day today :-)
There is STILL a load of darks to be hung out to dry which I will do when I get off this computer and put the yougest down for a nap! Then off to work until 12 AM... I am looking forward to crawling into bed around 1 in the morning!

OK,,,,, SOOOO you wanna learn about something today???!!! Well even if you don't, here goes some useless knowledge of mine!


Ok, so that was pretty funny, but it is true! Have any of you seen the MAD TV clip of that? It is REALLY funny!
HOW do you eat less???? Eat more fiber! Fiber is VERY filling (I eat a bowl of vanilla shredded wheat from Trader Joes, pretty much every morning for breakfast, and it tides me over for 4-5 hours, NOT kidding!) Oatmeal also has the same effect! Any thing NOT high in fiber, but high in sugar (like MORE cereals) leave you hungry after just a hour or so, because your blood sugar spikes and then DROPS, leaving you tired and HUNGRY!!!!!
Protien also fills you up, so make sure to have some with each meal!
Also remember to choose fruits (make sure to eat the skin) and veggies at each meal! They are loaded with fiber and keep the OLD SYSTEM' Flowing if you know what I mean!
ALSO, don't forget the water... WATER WATER WATER! This is hard for me, but if I fill up a 1/2 gallon full of water and put it in the fridge, I know I need to drink atleast that in the course of my day! Make sure to drink a glass right before you eat, you will eat less, I PROMISE! and EAT slowly, listen to you body!!!!!!!!!!

NOW, move more.... this is hard for most people! I will write about this more later!

Do you have any thoughts on how to EAT LESS?????

Thursday, August 21, 2008

How many hours in a day???

How much can a person do in 24 hrs????
To answer that question, I will tell you about my past 24 hours.....
Here is my family cutting up 20 quarts worth of green beans
We ended up canning 14 quarts of them to make a total of 81 quarts so far this year (I think we will be done canning them now....) I blanched and froze the rest of the beans.
We cleaned up the canning mess and headed to bed about 22 hours ago!
Here is the canning I did today...
11 pints of pickles and 4 pints of tomatoes (small picking of the red things huh???!!!)

And for our baked chicken with tomatoes (canned last season) I made 18 Honey muffins. They are more like a roll than a muffin!!! Perfect for lots of meals! (recipe will be posted in the future!) We also ate a quart of those GREEN beans we canned last night... after TONS AND TONS of jars of green beans, ONE didn't seal.... Don't ask, Don't tell!!! OH, and yummy cuccumber that didn't get pickled!

Right as we were sitting down to dinner, I popped these 35 SUPER YUMMY 'Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins' into the hot oven (hey while it's hot from cooking dinner, WHY NOT???) These are now in the freezer since We still have some blueberry crumb top muffins in the fridge! BECAUSE: Hey, muffins make a great SNACK food for the kids!

Last but not least.....

4 dozen Peanut Butter Cookies!

These are my oldest Sons favorite cookies and he has been begging for them for WEEKS! SOOOO you guessed it, while the oven was still hot, WHY NOT???!!!

I did manage to find some time while the tomatoes where in the canner to sew 3 boys aprons for my ETSY SHOP !!!! I also washed and hung out to dry 2 loads of laundry (super size!), Drove into town (yes, I live in the boonies) to run to the bank and post office, folded 2 loads of laundry, and picked up the house about 25 times (ok, that is a joke, my kids had to pick up their toys, but I did help the girls clean their room, does that count????) NOW, since it is ONLY 9pm here, I am going to head off to my sewing room to sew up a few more items before I FALL into bed for the night!

SOOOOOO How many hours are in a day???? And how will you fit everything in????

My thought for today!

Have you ever noticed that as the summer goes on, the kids get more bored???? They fight more and bug eachother more and more....!!!???
TODAY, get them out of the house, take them somewhere, fill up water balloons and have a water fight, do something you have been meaning to do all summer TODAY!!!!
::::: and if they are really bored, I find asking them to do a chore will cure the bordom quickly:::::

OH, Yippie!

Finally a place to write down all of the CRAZY useless bits of random thoughts I have!
My friends always call on me to answer their oddest questions and fix their problems... WHY? Because I have SOME answer filed away somewhere in my mind.... I know, it is crazy, but I have finally decided to do something with these thoughts...
They might include thoughts of child rearing, menu ideas, cleaning tips, organizing, POISION in our foods, snack ideas, weightloss thoughts, how to get more done, tips on canning produce, freezing meals, making muffins, Trans Fats, shopping thrift stores, talking to your kids about ______, and any other things that might enter my mind!

SOOOO welcome to a place where you can or MIGHT learn something new!