Time to Say Goodbye and Move On...

I've wanted to let you know that I have been working on a new project. Creative Home Keeper has been the result of a lot of prayer, discussion, and thought. It stems from a dream and a vision I have of creating an at home business to help earn an income while still remaining at home with the kids.

I have some future plans and goals of how I want to grow this into to a small business, but I'm not ready to share that yet. In the meantime, you can find me Creative Home Keeper. I have also set up facebook page and a twitter page. Please take some time to visit and and if you like what you see may I ask a favor? You can like my facebook page, follow my twitter, or subscribe to my blog.

Thanks so much for sharing life with me here at Good Gifts, and I look forward to you joining the conversation at Creative Home Keeper.


Paleo Update and February Snow

Well the end of my February Paleo food challenge has come and gone and I thought I should wrap up what I started. I have learned a lot about myself through this challenge, including...

  • I do have a dairy and glutten intolerance (self diagnosed)
  • I love my sweet and salty snacks (M&Ms and popcorn will never be permanently removed from my diet!)
  • I think about food WAY too much
  • I do strive to eat a balanced whole foods diet
I will continue to exclude diary and glutten from my diet as I try to naturally heal my digestive system. I'm not a complete Paleo fan, there are some components to the diet that I do think are healthy and everyone would benefit from (we as Americans eat way to much processed foods than we should), with that being said there are some really hard parts of the Paleo eating plan. Not eating grains is really hard, and while some are genetically modified and not healthy, I think a balanced diet should have some grains.

Also in my research some Paleo advocates even go as far as saying we shouldn't even be eating fruit! That is crazy to me. Yes fruits do contain a lot of NATURAL sugars, and if you set around all day and eat nothing but fruits that can really mess up your blood sugars. But fruits are natural, they come from nature, God designed them to be sweet and delicious. We SHOULD be eating a balanced diet with fruits.

In other news after last year's snow less winter, we had two massive blizzards within a few days of each other in February. I am not ashamed to admit that I enjoyed being snowed in for a few days with my little loves, but was definitely glad to get out of the house (Silas was to for that matter!)

We got about 18" total of snow, this is a view from our back deck.

Silas LOVED to play in the snow, but getting him dressed in his snow pants, boots, coat, mittens, and hat took a lot of work.

There was so much snow, he got stuck in it!

Of course we had to make snow ice cream!

Silas loved the snow ice cream

Can you believe Amelia is 6 months old now!
Why wear his snow boots when he can wear Nana's!


A Paleo Update and a Birthday Boy

So what's the quickest way to upset a Paleo eating plan? The stomach bug... ugh! :(
Basically the only things I could stomach eating for over four days were bread, crackers, oatmeal (plain), chicken noodle soup, bananas, Gatorade, and pretzels. Pretty much all of that falls into the grain/wheat or sugar category. But I wasn't going to make myself sicker by trying to eat foods that are Paleo approved while causing me to gag at the same time.
So now I'm almost back on track, it always amazes me how long you stay queasy after the bug passes. I have managed to cut diary completely out of my diet which is actually easier than I thought it would be (although I did have a scoop of ice cream at Silas' birthday). I'm working to cut out the wheat/grain foods, which IS a lot harder than I thought. I'm pretty much having to re-train my eating patterns and it has also made me realized how much I prefer to snack on crackers or granola bars than I do on fruits or vegetables. So baby steps as I try to eliminate processed foods and refined sugar from my diet.
I have also lost some weight, but it's hard to tell how much of that weight loss is resulted from the stomach bug. It's also to early to tell if my digestive issues have been relieved because the stomach bug did do a nasty number to by digestive system.
So in review, I'm a week and half into the Paleo diet and plan to continue on for a few more weeks to really being able to experience the benefits.

On another note this week has been a busy week for the Osborn house. Aside from today being Valentine's Day, yesterday we celebrated Brett's birthday, and over the weekend we celebrated Silas' 2nd birthday. I can't believe he is two already?!?! Where did the time go? Last week Brett also started his new job, so we have been trying to adjust to a new routine as Brett is now having to work longer due to a longer commute. His new job is a promotion and something that he has been excited about for a while. So it has been a blessing.
Here are a few photos from Silas' birthday celebration

The birthday boy "talking" to his Aunt Tammy who is out of town.

Elmo cupcakes, I had made cupcakes with homemade icing, but due to an event that I now call the Great Cupcake Disaster, I had to run to the grocery store an hour before his party to pick up some cupcakes!

A pinterest inspired vegetable platter with the carrots spelling out the number 2.

Like all good family photos with little ones, of course both children are not looking or smiling at the camera!

Silas enjoying his cupcake and ice cream, although he is his mama's child and preferred the ice cream over the cupcake!

At least we got one good shot, sans Miss Amelia, with the birthday boy!


Taking the Plunge Paleo Style

So tomorrow I'm taking a big plunge... I'm embarking on a Paleo Diet challenge. That's right folks no diary, no bread, no pasta, no wheat or grain foods, no processed foods, and no refined sugar. I'll basically only be eating vegetables, fruit, and lean meats.
Why am I doing this? Well I have been suffering from some digestive issues and other ailments for the past few years. It's amazing how pregnancy can completely alter your body! I've been researching some of my symptoms and have talked with my doctor, and I'm left to believe that I have some food in tolerances. Diary and glutten tend to be the major culprits of food allergies and in tolerances, so rather than just eliminating one at a time, I'm just going to go for it and bite the bullet and eliminate both, as well as all processed foods and refined sugars.
Things I'm going to miss:
  • Butter- sweet, creamy, savory butter
  • Yogurt
  • Cheese
  • Popcorn- my favorite snack
  • M&Ms
  • Oatmeal

Things I'm looking forward to:
  • feeling healthy
  • relief from digestive issues
  • weight loss as I continue to work towards losing baby weight
  • more energy (whatever comes after caring for 2 little ones!)
 So today at the store I loaded up on lots of fresh fruit and veggies

And what does one do on the day before completely eliminating all diary, wheat, grain, and sugar? Splurge on all those treats of course, and then remind myself of why I'm eliminating them from my diet.
This was a Kindle freebie last year and has been a good resource as I embark on this challenge
Paleo for Beginners: Essentials to Get Started
So I'm going to challenge myself for the next 30 days, beginning tomorrow February 1, to eat a Paleo diet. After that we'll see how I feel and if I even miss those "comfort" foods. Wish my luck!

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