Thursday, May 31, 2012

Just Puree It!

Today I met my Grandpa's new roommate, Lionel.

Lionel is One Hundred Years Old.  That's freaking awesome!

When my 96 year old Gramps told me how old he was, I was like, "Old Geezer!"  Gramps just chuckled.

I stopped into my Gramps' room (he's usually out on his chair in the family room all day) to introduce Ryan and myself to Lionel.  I didn't wake him...instead, he was doing a word search with a ruler and sketching pictures on a pad of paper.

I reached for his shoulder, "Hi Lionel!  My name is Adrienne.  My Grandfather is your roommate, Lou.  My mother, Betty, is Lou's daughter who is here visiting him every day.  This is my son, Ryan.  How are you doing today?"

His face lit up, I tell ya.  "Well, hello!  That is mighty kind of you to stop in and make time for me.  Thank you for introducing yourself."

He worked in sharing his whopping age of 100 years into our conversation.  I told him I am sure he has so many stories and has seen a lot of life.  He told me where he was from, that he used to be a civil engineer for the Air Force, that he has a Great-great Grandson about Ryan's age.

Great-great.  Can that be right?!

Anyway, before Ryan and I got our bike helmets on and headed out the door, we gave Gramps his smooches and waved "bye bye."

When we got home I cut up organic turkey, gluten-free/egg-free bread w/raw honey from Jason's Grampa's farm, and an organic peach for Ryan.

Let's just say, Ryan was simply unimpressed with the peach.  I had tasted it and it was a little pithy.  So, whether you are 100 years old or 1 year going on 2, I did what must be done in these situations...I pureed it.

  • 1/4 banana
  • 1 small container organic apple sauce
  • 1 small not so great peach partially chewed by a toddler
  • 1/4 cup organic canned pumpkin
  • 1 dash of nutmeg
  • 1 dash of cinnamon
Puree these in your Baby Bullet or regular Bullet or blender or whatever.  Then I broke up small pieces of carrot chips (freeze dried from store) and threw those in there.

Baby, there's nothing you can't hide when food is pureed with apple sauce or pumpkin...even ABC food.  He snarfed it down.  

*A reader had asked what I feed my kiddos.  I'll post some of their menus from time to time. 

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Feeling Good!

I'm just over two weeks into this thing.

I feel good.

I feel clean.

In fact, my brain feels healthy and that is of utmost importance to me, even above and beyond my physical well-being.

I haven't followed each exercise day to a "T" but have done something active almost every day.  This past weekend we drove to South Dakota for a wedding and it rained for a majority of the time.  I didn't get out and walk like I thought I would, but we were so busy with wedding planning and preparation, I never had a chance to really sit, so I felt active.

South Dakota, as much as I love it, has historically been a place of overeating for me.  And over 21 years of many, many visits, I've allowed really fabulous memories of being surrounded by people I love dearly become intertwined with making poor food choices.  Every gathering centers around food and celebration, which is wonderful.  However, for the most part, the recipes have been high-carb, high-sugar, high-fat, allergy-laden, or just plain old out of proportion, for me.

Being on this cleanse and getting it into my head that I am allergic or sensitive to certain foods really empowered my mind to set the tone for the choices I made all weekend.  I wasn't sad that I was allergic to or avoiding a majority of the menus.  I was able to eat great meat, tons of veggies, and ample fruit throughout the weekend and am able to look back on the whole experience without one regret.


For me, that is huge!  HUGE!

I hate regrets, especially when it pertains to food or excess intake of it, or a particular culprit.

Having a plan written out and a course of action in place for eating healthily has been a great help to me.  I encourage you.  You can make healthy choices.  It's not about how you look in the's about stewardship.  We are given one physical body on this earth.  The one you are sitting in right now...that's it, baby.  Are you nurturing it with real life-giving foods or overloading it with "food" it does not comprehend, stuff found constantly in boxes, bags, and with dozens of "ingredients" you aren't able to pronounce?

It's about loving yourself.  If you eat that third piece of pie, you aren't "sticking it to the man" or giving an "in your face" to the person who hurt your heart.  They could care less if you are unhealthy.  You are only taxing your body, asking it to process two pieces more than it should.

It's about whether you can chase your kids at the park, fly kites with them, ride bikes, swim at the pool or lake with them and their friends, climb up into their beds to read at night, wrestle on the floor with them...

...and if you don't have kids, it's about being able to enjoy your friends, relationships, or spouse without obsessing about your back fat, taking a walk or going mountain biking or climbing together, canoeing, running, laughing, enjoying life together, instead of succumbing to being irritable, cranky, and feeling like heck because your brain is toxic from the wrong foods.

Just because I can't eat recipes with eggs, dairy, or gluten doesn't mean I missed out on anything this last weekend.

I actually got to take part and enjoy what mattered the most:  SPENDING TIME WITH SO MANY PEOPLE THAT I LOVE AND FOR WHOM I AM GRATEFUL.

*If you read this feeling sorry for me whatsoever, I would challenge you to start peeling off the layers in your own mind of what really matters and if you, indeed, have a food addiction.  If you believe I missed out on anything, food wise, I would challenge your thinking...

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Gun Show

There's a gun show in town today.  

But yesterday, there were no guns.  No.  They were bat wings, Grandma-ish.  "Squishy, squishy," as Emily used to affectionately say.  

Nothing has changed since yesterday, to the eye, but I'm trying to love my arms...and by "love" them I mean, tough love, like Jillian Michaels, Tony Horton, boat loads of push-ups, dips, curls, type of love.  Not unconditional, accept-you-as-you-are love.

It's ridiculous, really.

It's a #FirstWorldProblem to have weight TO LOSE.

Let me repeat that statement:  It's a #FirstWorldProblem to have weight TO LOSE.

This isn't something with which women who walk 6 miles a day to gather water for their families will ever struggle.

And yet, there are moments, here and there, though fewer and farther between, where I wish my arms were just lean, already!

And I know.  I know, okay!  I am reading Voskamp's 1000 Gifts, and I know, blasted.

1.  Thank You, Lord, for arms, in general!  I lift them high and praise Your name!

I do not think about it all the time.  My thoughts, actually are getting better as I habitually practice the art of renewing my mind with God's word on a regular basis.  When I set two alarms for 5:30 am, there are no excuses...

That Guy sure has some great things to say, I tell ya.  He's super smart.  Like, way smarter than Einstein, even.  Like this, for example:

     "If you decide for God, living a life of God-worship, it follows that you don't fuss about what's on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion.  There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body.  Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God.  And you count far more to him than birds.
     "Has anyone by fussing in front of the mirror ever gotten taller (or leaner arms) by so much as an inch?  All this time and money wasted on fashion - do you think it makes that much difference?  Instead of looking at the fashions, walk out into the fields and look at the wildflowers.  They never primp or shop, but have you ever seen color and design quite like it?  The ten best-dressed men and women in the country look shabby alongside them.
     "If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers - most of which are never even seen - don't you think he'll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you?  What I'm trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God's giving.  People who don't know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works.  Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions.  Don't worry about missing out.  You'll find all your everyday human concerns will be met."   - The Message, Matthew 6:25-33
(green parenthesis mine...)

30 years of mental un-doing is tough work.  It takes prayer, time literally changing my brain, and physical time.  It's the time part I'm learning...

And so, I am practicing thankfulness, gratitude, joy, and rest in knowing He made me, He loves me, He cares for me even more than the magnificent wildflowers that are covering the countryside in Colorado at this very moment...the ones Ryan and I see on our bike rides...because I have arms that are able to grip handle bars...and I have legs strong enough to pedal.  

And it's up to me to praise Him, to walk out of the gun show and focus on the Great and Glorious God.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Week Two, Baby!

I'm on week two of my cleanse and workout schedule.

I feel UH-MAZE-ing!  For reals, I have not had any cravings.  Last week I was a little tired, but I'm guessing that comes from my early morning hours reading and doing my workouts.

I've had tons of energy and a lot of my feelings/symptoms/bodily aches and pains are subsiding.  My hands were achy.  And my knees.  And I was irritable.  And moody.  Did I mention bloated, gassy, and the fact that none of my jeans were fitting...not even the pair I bought a month ago as my "10 lbs, give or a take a few, jeans..."

Here is the run down:  Each morning I have hot lemon water with a little Stevia.  This gets the liver going.  I read my Bible and pray.  I usually have a bit of lean protein in meat form at this time, too.  Then I go to the basement and do my workout of the day.  Head up to shower, get ready and get kiddos and hubster up and going and out the door.  He's helpful with this, so I won't pretend I do it all on my own.  He's stellar!  Then each morning I am drinking my green drink.  I also have hot tea throughout the day because I'm wimpy and am always cold.  This is usually a green tea or herbal tea from Yogi or Medicinals.  I eat fruit, green veggies, and a lean protein for lunch.  I also eat this for dinner.  Sometimes I'll have a piece of fruit or more veggies as a snack, but I haven't been that hungry.

Keep in mind, for the next 2ish months, I am not eating ANY of my allergens, sensitivities, or sugars, so, for me that means NO:

  • gluten
  • dairy
  • eggs
  • corn
  • potatoes
  • grains
  • sugary fruits (ie, bananas, pineapple, grapes...)
  • nuts or seeds
  • fats other than fish oils
That leaves a lot, people.  This is a first world problem to be able to even say, "Oh, I'm eliminating certain foods from my diet..."  People in the third world do not have this luxury, so I would challenge you to challenge your own perspective.

I finally had to give myself a "Snap out of it!" talk and it worked...

In September when I do start introducing foods like grains or sugars once in a while, I'm approaching it more like Laura Ingalls Wilder and the days of old.  They did not go to the store every day or even every week and buy a package of crap filled cookies with ingredients that included numbers and chemical compounds.  Instead, they went to the bakery once in a while and got ONE special treat.  

  • One cookie.
  • One cupcake.
  • One pie to share with their whole family for a special occasion.
  • One piece of candy on their trip into town with Pa.

We all boast about how our great-grandparents lived long lives eating beef and potatoes, real cream and eggs every day.  We forget they didn't have boxes and bags of chemically formulated foods laden with sugar and maxi-carbs pouring down their throats.  

They worked their arses off, got a heckofalot more exercise than the average person these days, and they ate whole foods.  Not at Whole Foods, this doesn't have to be expensive, but actual as close to the way God created it in the first place.

*How far away from it's original design is the food you are feeding your body and giving to your children?  What small changes can you make to start incorporating healthier choices into your routine every day?

Friday, May 18, 2012

Fresh Start, Week 1

So, this week went pretty well for me, spiritually, mentally, and physically.

I've enjoyed my quiet mornings each day with prayer and some digging into The Message version of the Bible, reading Romans, Luke, and some Psalms, as I sip on my hot lemon water to get my liver going.  I'd like to share something I saw for the first time this morning which encouraged my heart:

"God made my life complete
when I placed all the pieces before him.
When I got my act together,
he gave me a fresh start.
Now I'm alert to God's ways;
I don't take God for granted.
Every day I review the ways he works;
I try not to miss a trick.
I feel put back together,
and I'm watching my step.
God rewrote the text of my life
when I opened the book of my heart to his eyes."

(Psalm 18:20-24, The Message)

I'm reading "Unchain Your Brain" by Dr. Daniel Amen, MD, this week, along with some Anne Lamott and Ann Voskamp.  I also picked up Katherine Boo's, "Beyond the Beautiful Forevers," and am looking forward to digging into that story.

"Unchain Your Brain" is fascinating.  The words within have only confirmed what I already knew:  I have been a food addict for years and years and years.  Also, this is interesting:  in lab rats given cocaine and sugar/high carb options, the rats would always return to the sugar/high carb options over the coke.  DUDE!

But not without hope...the scripture above is just proof that God has cast a whole crew of imperfect characters in this drama of life, and I could have easily written those verses, except a different imperfect lover of God did, instead.

As far as food cravings this week, I have literally had NONE!  I'm eating cleaner than clean.  Tons of veggies, lean meat and fish/shellfish, and fruits.  I've also gotten great sleep (went to bed at 8:30 the other night!) and have exercised each morning as on schedule.  As a result I lost around 7 lbs.  This was likely water weight and bloating, as I'm not as bloated in my stomach or torso anymore.  I had been eating all my culprits and I could sure tell!

If you don't think THE KIND OF FOOD YOU CONSUME has anything to do with your physical, emotional, or mental health, I WOULD CHALLENGE YOU TO RECONSIDER and at least GIVE HEALTH A TRY!  Whole food eating isn't going to hurt, that's for sure!

I'm feeling good and looking forward to seeing some definition in my arms one of these days.  In the meantime, I know the Lord has given me the strength to make changes in my life by just deciding to go ahead and do it, and to come up with a healthy, practical plan.

What encouragement do you have to offer others who may be reading?

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Day 2

Good morning!

Just so you can get an idea of how quickly my body responds to clearing out allergens and refined carbohydrates, let me share my journey from yesterday to this morning.

Yesterday I got up, had hot lemon water and spent some time with God.  I spent some time with Jillian Michaels doing one of her twenty minute 30-day Shred videos.  I drank tons of water throughout the day. I had a big green drink for breakfast (RAW by Garden of Life).  Ry and I got Em off to school, ran some errands, took both kids to the dentist, Em back to school, then Ry and I headed home for lunch.  I had an enormous greens and herb salad with 4-5oz of chicken, a Pink Lady apple, and some homemade dressing I made up w/Apple Cider Vinegar, Balsamic, stevia, 1 tsp of "21 Salute Seasoning" from Trader Joe's.  For dinner I made shrimp lettuce wraps with green onion, cilantro, mango, cucumber, ACV, turmeric, cayenne, smoked paprika, and salt.  (For the rest of the family I made a peanut sauce and rice noodles.)

I was not hungry all day.  I did not go to bed hungry.  In addition to lots of water throughout the day, I also had a little green tea with stevia.

Yesterday morning my weigh-in was 139.6 lbs.

This morning my weigh-in was 136.0 lbs.

I wasn't trying to lose 3.6 lbs in one day.  I just know how quickly my body responds to taking out culprits.

I did have a carb/sugar withdrawal headache last evening, but after a good night sleep, it's gone and I feel energized this morning.

Have a great day!  I just finished my morning Yoga and am going to get my kids some breakfast.


Monday, May 14, 2012


So, it's only 3:23 pm and I am exhausted.  I just woke up from a small cat nap in the hammock.

70 degrees + Colorado + sunshine + 1 hammock + a great book = a bit of bliss (and an inability to keep my eyes open..)

Florence and the Machine brought me back to life as I finished the dishes and snapped out of my reverie.

Anyway, the tiredness is no doubt a result of greeting the sunrise today, as I posted on my "Cleanse/Detox Schedule."  But I'm not complaining.  When I write things down, I do them.  Somehow it takes the commitment from simply verbal or intentional to action on a greater plane.

Maybe that works for you, maybe not.  But when I decide something, commit my heart and will to it, and then WRITE IT DOWN, it motivates me.

As a result, I had some sweet time reading my new Remix version of The Message, given to me by my loving daughter, handsome son, and insanely faithful husband.  I multi-tasked this time with a cup of hot lemon water in my favorite mug.  And by "multi-tasked" I mean, hot lemon water activates your liver to start doing its job for the day.  This time went longer than expected, but spending time with the Lord doesn't ever suck, so I went with it.

However, it did not keep me from doing the inevitable:  taking my measurements.

I jotted them down, but with excitement rather than contempt.  This is a big step for me, people, because I know I've gained weight as a result of not making healthy choices and not being sweet to my body, so previously I probably would have dreaded taking measurements.

But today I woke up motivated, excited, and determined to show myself love by first fueling with God's word, then making healthy choices for living.

Still not sure if I have the balls to post a "before" picture, but I will share something I found quite fascinating.  I made a Word document with four columns of my measurements I recorded over the last year and a half.  It's pretty cool, even if my measurements from today show I've gained several inches around my body.

Wt:  170.4
Neck:  13 1/2
Rt. Arm:  14
Chest:  38
Waist:  31 1/2
Stomach:  38 1/2
Hips:  40
Rt. Thigh:  25
Rt. Calf:  15 1/2
Rt. Ankle:  8 1/2
Wt:  145.0
Neck:  13 1/4
Rt. Arm:  13
Chest:  37
Waist:  29
Stomach:  34
Hips:  36 1/4
Rt. Thigh:  23
Rt. Calf:  14 1/2
Rt. Ankle:  8 1/2
Wt:  131.2
Neck:  12 1/4
Rt. Arm:  11 1/2
Chest:  34
Waist:  26
Stomach:  29 1/2
Hips:  34 1/2
Rt. Thigh:  21
Rt. Calf:  14
Rt. Ankle: 8
Wt:  139.6
Neck:  13
Rt. Arm:  12 1/2
Chest:  38
Waist:  29 1/2
Stomach:  34 1/2
Hips:  35 1/2
Rt. Thigh:  23
Rt. Calf:  14 1/4
Rt. Ankle:  8
My goals include losing several inches off my arms, thighs, chest, waist, and stomach.  When I cleaned up my act which reflects the results from 8/30/11, I did not do any sort of exercise.  I can't wait to have pipes and be strong, full of muscle and tons of energy.  Mostly, I am looking forward to a mind which is whole and healed as a result of prayer and feeding my body and brain whole foods.

Will you be joining me on this journey?

Friday, May 11, 2012

Monday, Monday

La la la la la la

Monday, the day after Mother's Day, I'll be embarking on this...

Feel free to join me, make your own, or just cheer me on.

And if you do join in, tweaking it to fit your life and allergens, leave comments and insight that will help motivate others.

Have a great weekend!  I'm going to eat like a Queen!  Or at least, I'm going to have a little wine and chocolate before the big cleanse :)


Have you heard of the phenomena of when a person loses an appendage they often have ghost feelings that their missing limb is still there?

In the last year and a half I lost 45 lbs.

I have collar bones and knee caps.

When I don't eat my allergens, I have hip bones.

Apparently they were always there, just coated under layers of layers of layers.

I can still remember one day in 1981 when I was sitting on the toilet at home around 3:05 pm.

I was a latch-key kid, getting home about an hour or so earlier than my big sister.  Also, in elementary school I would never use the bathroom at school.  And by "never" I mean, not ever.  I didn't want anyone to hear me tinkle.  And I certainly would have died if anyone heard me plop.  I literally just went in there, as all teachers knew we did in the 80's, to comb my feathered hair.

Anyway, as I was rushing up to our front door, chucking my book bag on the ground, squirming, twisting, legs crossed while trying to unlock the door and unbutton my Calvin Klein jeans (nothing came between me and my CK's...) the lock and key finally cooperated.

With the door flung wide, despite all the mad rapists and murderers in suburban Mesa, Arizona, (I had watched too much nightly news) I ran into the house to the bathroom and stood before the toilet, trying to peel off my jeans.

And suddenly I had this warm feeling come over me.  At least, it came over the bottom half of me.

Something had, indeed, come between me and my Calvin Klein's.

Somehow I was able to pinch it, peel off my jeans and sit and finish what I had started.

And as I sat there, as I had done time and again, I began to count:



Five rolls of belly fat.  Going from smallest to biggest as they cascaded down my abdomen.

Yes, I remember this from 1981, and it makes me a little sad to know I wasn't counting squares of toilet paper or making designs out of the drywall patterns instead of what I would do each and every time I sat down on the toilet.

(Don't worry.  Remember, I've been in and out of's okay)

All that to say, my earliest memories have always included some excess folds.  My mind remembers back fat and flappy upper arms and the comment a college friend said when she saw cellulite on my calves.

But sometimes, most of the time, my eyes and mind do not communicate.  At least of late.  And I sense those 45 lbs still there, even though the majority of them are not.

It's like there's ghost fat rolls I can still count.  Like I'm a fat amputee trying to learn life without fat as an appendage.

And I know it sounds strange.  But when, for years, you've carried extra weight and then it is suddenly (not instantaneously, but seemingly) gone, I really do believe it takes your mind a while to catch up with the new physical you.

This is the leg of the journey I find myself on right now.  I'm praying and trusting God to help my mind and my eyes and my reality line up...

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Deeply Rooted

The new Me

The Me I've always known I could be

The Me that's hidden deep within
-under shame
-shallow sin

It's time to live
-time to breathe
-walk out
-walk bold
-not break in the breeze

Stand tall, live large

A tree, planted long ago
-secure and strong
-deeply rooted
-seeking life from The Source

Nourishment, true Nourishment

The Son
-feeding me
-warming me
-filling me with light

Nutrients to every cell

I am free!

Free to grow, breathe, drink, dwell deeply

A tree planted by the Master Gardener, meant to grow and thrive
-to clap my hands
-to wave my branches
-meant to bend, not break, in the breeze

A planting of the Lord for the display of His splendor!

He gives life to me so I am able to give life to others.

I am a tree, grafted into the Vine.

*As I lounged in my hammock today in the perfect Colorado sun, inspired by God's goodness and grace, and Prochaska's Cycle of Addiction, I was journaling a plan, a POA or "Plan of Action" if you will, for how to move forward from here, one day at a time.  You see, last time I did a detox, cleanse or hCG, I never had a POA for how I was going to proceed once my body felt clean and detoxified.  I've been eating all of my culprit foods lately, and I feel lousy.  And today, in my hammock, I was quite over it.  So, I pulled out a journal and started writing...writing about which foods make me feel sick, weak, bloated, achy, miserable...and then wrote WHY?  Why would I eat them if I already KNOW they don't bring me life?  It was a freeing exercise, because I not only wrote the foods that make me feel like crap, but I wrote all the foods that make me feel great!  NOT EMOTIONALLY GREAT, BUT PHYSICALLY GREAT!  THE LATTER IS WHAT MATTERS MOST TO ME!  Like veggies, and veggies, and fish and chicken and beef, and more veggies, and only certain fruits, and more veggies, but not every veggie.  Anyway, as I wrote the picture of a beautiful tree came to my heart...and the above writing is what resulted from it.

Monday, May 7, 2012

More Like You

I wish I were more like you.

Your silence is deafening...the way you carry yourself without words.  They speak volumes to me...that you, indeed, live a life without struggles, insecurities...sin.

I wish I were more like you…

...because you don't seem to have any problems.

You seem to have your act together 98% of the time, and the other 2% are passed off or softened through sarcasm.  I get that.  I try to laugh at myself, too.  

I do not share with you those things with which I wrestle in the dark, and in the solitude.  Not because I don't want to, but because, clearly, you would not understand, seeing as how you have no problems, and all...

If I were more like you, than I would be less like me.

A girl who is no longer a girl but often times wishes she was, just so she could go back to simpler times when grown ups told her what to eat, when to hop in the shower, that bedtime was approaching...and the prayers were prayed over her rather than feeling the weight of praying the prayers in order to stop the madness which sometimes swirls in this 40 year old brain.

If I was more like you, I imagine my life would be easier, more beautiful, less confusing...because that's how you portray it, at least.

Check "Yes" or "No" if this is not the case.

Your leading role in this life as a person who struggles with nothing is a command performance. We all want to know just how you do it.  We'd appreciate a copy of your script.  We would love to play along...

I'm afraid to tell you when I fail.  Failure is unbecoming.  You might think less of me.  Would it take me back to square one in your eyes, or would you see it just as a blip in my journey?

To see it as only a blip in my journey would be the kind of Grace I know is extended to me every single day.  However, as much as I try to see myself with Your eyes, on this particular day, and on this leg of the journey, one day of failure is epic.  

I wish I were more like You.  

Because then I would be less like me.