Friday, May 3, 2013

30x30 challenge. Getting outside!!

Today is day 2 and again it was very easy in the beautiful weather to get outside for more than 30 minutes!!

We went to a couple parks today, Wyatt played with his cousin at his grandparents, we played good guys and bad guys (he made up the name. Lol) in the backyard and took a small walk around the block listening to the different birds at dusk.

We also went to see a boy named Hooch. He is a dog up for adoption at the Welland humane society. He is a beautiful boy that just needs to learn some manners :) we lost our dog about 3 weeks ago and it is taking everything in me not to bring Hooch home. Lol.

It was a pretty relaxing day :) my knee is on the mend and I have the ok for activity again so we will be biking this weekend for sure!!





This is Hooch :) He needs a new name and a home! 


This is actually from Wednesday evening but I had to post it. I asked him what he was doing and he told me he was making me a gift. 


This is the gift :) It is a small piece of wood wrapped in a napkin and a flower nailed to it. I love him!!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

30x30 challenge from David Suzuki

I know I come and go on here but sometimes I have more to say than others :)

For the month of May David Suzuki is doing a 30x30challenge. Get outside for 30 mins for the 30 days of May. On his website you can sign up for the challenge and he has different ideas on the things you can do while out in nature at work, at home, and at play.

On top of the 30x30 Wyatt and I are going to add a way to clean up our community. Wyatt has been very big on helping keep the world clean and always wants to pick up garbage. So in the next 30 days we are going to try to fill 6 garbage bags with litter. We are trying to get the city to help us with the disposal of the garbage. Right now if I collect a bag of garbage I have to pay to dispose of it. I am confident that we will get some help with this from our city :)

I am trying to document our 30 day challenge and the different ways we experience nature for the month. Our goal (ok my goal ..lol) is to get as many people as we can to get out for this challenge. I am letting Wyatt use our little camera to take pictures so most of the pictures from this challenge will be seen through a 4 yr olds eyes :)

The fresh air or some sun on your face can make all the difference in your day. Slow down and listen to the sounds around you, stop and take in the smell as you walk past a garden, notice the birds finding food or building nests, just enjoy the world around you for the next 30 days and it will make a difference!

Get out!! Start a garden, take a walk or sit on your porch. It is just 30 minutes of your day!

I would love to know what you are doing for your 30x30 challenge!

I have an injured knee :( So we have not done too much but this morning we went to The Heartland Forest for a nature walk and to learn about some frogs, turtles, fish, snakes and other animals. If you are local this place is so great and free!! We have been outside all day in the backyard so we are well over our 30 minutes today!


blowing bubbles in the backyard


We went to the heartland forest today. This is the only picture I got with him alone. 

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

mmmmm .. crock pot chicken :)

Tuesday - We went grocery shopping today and bought a fruit dish (Wyatt was hungry and it was lunch time. I usually prefer to make them at home since it is cheaper to just cut up your own fruit), 1L choc milk (special treat), a container of Greek yogurt (Wyatt has been doing well with dairy being Introduced, it is just the small one and we will see how he does with it), shrimp, whole chicken, sausage, bananas and cauliflower. Total = $26.40

Breakfast was banana pancakes out of the freezer (.20), lunch was fruit and sausage ($4), supper was this crock pot chicken from 100 days of real food ($6.20) I love this chicken! I make stock from it after the chicken is cooked ($2). I get about 8 cups out of it. I freeze the chicken stock in ice cube trays, once they are frozen I put them in a large freezer bag. Each cube is 2 tablespoons and I use them in recipes :) cheap to make and I know exactly what is in it. Total $12.40
Chicken cooking in the crock pot. The house smells amazing when I make this!
Wyatt told me he was cold and wanted to cuddle in the blanket on the couch, he was talking to me while I was cooking them he just stopped. Out cold for 2 hours :)
Wednesday - We have people coming to see our house. I am not a fan of strangers coming in my house but I really want to sell it. We are buying a house on 10 acres which will be awesome because we are going to have some animals and a big garden :) I have been crazy busy this last 2 days trying to get the house ready for people to come see it while keeping up with Wyatt and the messes he makes. He has been crazy the last few days.

Today we had some Greek yogurt, butternut squash and bananas for breakfast. ($3) lunch was sausage and cauli rice with broccoli (this was frozen when it was in season, I love my freezer!) ($4) supper was chicken soup and Wyatt ate 5 small bowls I think it is safe to say he is a fan of the soup :). I made it from the stock I made over night and used some of the leftover chicken from yesterday with vegetables ($.50) I still have 4 cups of stock left to freeze. We snacked on apples and shrimp Total $11.50

I had to run to the grocery store again and I picked up Avocados, bananas, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, celery, green grapes, kale, kiwis, leeks, green peppers and sweet potatoes the total was $23.05

Total meals made to date = $49
Total groceries bought to date = $94.45

Monday, January 7, 2013

What we do with no TV


I already posted about our food and thought I would do a separate post with pictures from the last few days of how we are keeping ourselves occupied :)



one of Wyatt's favourite things is circling books he wants form the scholastic book order :)


Wyatt made a person out of cheese and named him cheese head


Painting


learning how to take care of baby animals .. we can;t have them pooping on the floor he told me .. lol


he loves playing with Alex's games so I made him a page so we could make it a game he can play. We each pick letters form the bag and if he can name the letter then he gets to find a matching letter on the "board"


Lots of writing. here he is writing Bs


some iPad time :)


lots of games!




I made him a dinosaur for "knitting" he loves these things

He has been loving all the extra attention he has been getting. He has been showing a huge interest in letters and writing his letters this week so I am taking advantage of that! 

Where do the hours go in a day??

I know I have not posted in a few days. I honestly have no idea where the hours go in a day :) I have been keeping track of everything just haven't had a chance to actually sit down and write it on a post. I am thinking I may have to do this for 2 months since I eat way more frozen leftovers than I thought. Lol. It is hard to keep track of how much they cost.

I am still unplugged even though Wyatt has his protests at times. There are also times I wish I could just turn the tv on so he can sit while I do something. We are on our third magic treehouse book and we have read many other books. We have painted, played with playdoh, gone on adventure walks, cleaned out some books to pass on to another homeschool family, made up our own tv show, played outside a lot, made treasure maps, played flashlight tag and many other things to occupy our time. I honestly am shocked by how much time I have wasted on the computer and TV. I guess that is the whole point of going unplugged. You forget by the time January comes around again though :)

I have read a couple books and I go to bed earlier than before. I find I am more relaxed and the house is cleaner and more organized. I have found the game "words with friends" and I can see that game taking over my time quickly if I allowed it.

Friday - Breakfast was oatmeal (we are trying to reintroduce oats into our diet) and some kiwi. Lunch was leftover chicken and root vegetables. Supper was the last of the chili and cauli potatoes. The day cost less than a dollar since it was leftovers

Saturday - Breakfast was bacon and eggs ($3). Lunch was cauli rice with sautéed peppers and onion along with chicken sausage, I get these from a man at the market and I love them!! ($8.50) supper was some root vegetables (left over from freezer) with the rest of the sausage, peppers and rice. We drank a half bottle of grape juice too :) ($2.50) Total of $14 for the day.

We went to the market today and spent $45 we got 2 bottles of grape juice, a basket of beets, 6 heads of garlic, 4 chicken sausage, a huge bag of apples (about 15), 6 pairs, 54 eggs, a bottle of apple cider and a bouquet of flowers (Wyatt picks one out every Saturday. I love always having fresh flowers on my table). I can't wait for warmer weather for all the fresh local produce!

Sunday - we were in and out of the house today and didn't really eat any specific meal at home. We didn't eat breakfast (before you say "how could you skip breakfast" we really just follow our bodies. Wyatt wasn't hungry and neither was I so why force it.) We had some lunch at a friends. We snacked on oranges, boiled eggs, leftover chicken, beef jerky, pears, cheese and left over cauli rice. I would say the day cost about $4 (we made the beef jerky which makes it soooo much cheaper).

Monday - we had some beef jerky and raw cucumber and peppers for breakfast. Lunch was mustard glazed chicken breasts with peppers and butternut squash. Supper was leftover (from the freezer) pork tenderloin, root vegetables and spinach. $6 for the day.

I am just going to keep track of the money used/spent on the bottom of my post. I am writing down what each meal cost me everyday but also what I am spending on groceries. 2 different totals but since I already have food in the house I couldn't just keep track of the amount of food I buy. I will figure it all out by the end of the month :)

Total meals made to date = $30
Total groceries bought to date = $45

Friday, January 4, 2013

Changing the look of the blog

I keep playing around with different layouts for the blog. In the next few days I will be making some changes to it for the better. All the posts will be staying I am just moving some things around :) Sorry if things are confusing while I am doing this.

Kim



Thursday, January 3, 2013

Getting back into a routine

Mike left for work today. We loved having him home for 2 weeks! It always takes a few days to get back into routine and the holidays always mess with routines.

Mayo in the food processor 
This morning we had egg salad with bacon. I made mayo again (this is the 4th try) it turned out pretty good. It cost me around $3 to make and has nothing bad in it. You can see the recipe here from "the clothes make the girl". $3.50 for bacon and 2.80 for eggs about .30 worth of lettuce. Bacon is from Churchhill Natural Meats and it is all drug and hormone free "happy" pigs. The eggs are from a local free range farm. Lunch we had leftover chili. Supper we ate leftover seafood and leftover "potatoes" and carrots. So those meals did not cost us anything. we had some cucumber, kiwi, leftover chicken and an apple for snacks. Todays' total for food has been about $10.



Wyatt playing bilingual memory match
Tv free day 3 has gone well. Wyatt has asked three times to watch TV and I told him we were not watching it until the month is done. He said ok and walked away .. lol. We started reading the "magic Treehouse" book series today and finished book #1. I read these with Alex and I love them I hope Wyatt will love them all just as much. I am reading "Wheat Belly" by William Davis, it is really such an interesting book. I love that I have more time to read without TV and Facebook (my 2 biggest time wasting activities). Wyatt and I played some games and did some puzzles too. I felt like I had so much more time today.


I did my 30 sit ups today and 1m 30s plank. I am not so strong in the plank department. We will be back at the gym next week. Wyatt loves the programs and activities the Y has and I love doing the classes. We have not been to the gym much since we changed foods November 1st for some reason. I am pretty sure I have the food thing down now and we are going back to the Y :)

I am not so great with technology things but I have decided to check out some apps on the iPad. I love how many great educational apps there are for the kids. I still think they should be using non technology means of learning but it is fun for 30 mins a day to do some hands on learning with the iPad. I am shocked how fast Wyatt is learning how to do things on it.

The boys enjoying a game together on Alex's iPad



Wednesday, January 2, 2013

A relaxing but productive day

I got to have a day "off" today for about 5 hours. All the boys were out and it was just the dog and I. I love the quiet for a bit but then I miss them. I did get to relax though and get some reading in. I reorganized the basement and purged some toys, which always makes me feel great. These kids have a crazy amount of toys! I also realized that I may have a problem with collecting homeschool books and children's books. My book shelves are getting full.

Not having the tv has shown the boys they can not always have everything they want when they want it. Wyatt had a bit of a meltdown this morning when he realized I was changing the morning routine (yesterday was Mike's birthday so the present opening distracted him). Usually he watches TV in the morning and before bed. He is still kind of confused as to why I would unplug all the televisions in the house for a whole month. This morning we played a couple games and worked on his letters with his Hand writing without tears stuff. We love this program for learning to write and letter recognition. Today we used the iPad app for wet, dry, try (first the app shows them how to write the letter then they go over with a wet cloth, a dry towel, then chalk) We also do this on an actual chalk board but the iPad was in my room and his HWT materials were in the basement (I was not walking all the way down there at 7am ...lol).

I had some bananas getting dark so I made extra banana pancakes this morning to freeze. Wyatt would live off these if I let him and they are so simple to make. I let him have a bit of syrup with them and he will eat about 5 for breakfast. They do not cost much to make either we figured about $1 a batch. You can get bananas on sale when they are too ripe and make a couple batches up and freeze them. It would save you time and money for a quick breakfast or snack.

Wyatt went to his grandparents today while Mike and Alex went to watch the Hobbit at the theatre. When Wyatt goes to visit someone I always have to send him with food since he will try to con anyone into giving him food he is not allowed to eat .. lol .. Really it is just easier for everyone if I send his food with him and he loves picking what he will snack on. Today he was sent with banana pancakes with a bit of syrup on the side, homemade beef jerky, carrot gingerbread muffin, ham, chicken, boiled egg, strawberries, blueberries, a kiwi, coconut milk and some natural grape juice we get from a local farmer. When we first starting eating like this it always felt like such a pain to pack his snack every time we went somewhere but now I just keep small containers with snack food in the fridge and it is nothing to grab a couple to throw in his lunch bag. He loves having his own snacks while we are out and we are not tempted to eat unhealthy/expensive foods. We absolutely love our Balanced day lunch kit! We can fit so much into it.

My fitness challenges continue, today I did 25 sit ups and a 1m 30s plank (doesn't sound like much but it feel like an hour while you are doing it). I forgot to mention yesterday that Alex and I ran a 5k on New Years Eve. It was chilly but we had fun like always. I am pretty sure we don't have any more runs until April now. I would like to keep it at a race a month like we did last year. He really wants to start doing 10k but I like the 5k pace :)

We have a pond behind our house and once it freezes we have free skating all winter. I was so excited to see people playing hockey on it yesterday. We didnt make it out today but I will try to get Wyatt out tomorrow after Mike leaves for work.

I don't have to go grocery shopping yet so I have to tally up the amount the food costs that I am using. Yesterday we had Mike's birthday dinner plus our regular meals which was banana pancakes and leftovers. Today's meals have been pancakes $2 with leftovers for 2 days. Lunch was leftovers and for supper I made this chili. It was so good! I added steak to it (I also used coconut oil instead of olive oil) and the whole meal cost me $19 (it would have been $9 if I left the steak out) Mike and I both had seconds and we have enough leftovers for another meal :) My meat was all grass fed organic meat from Honey Valley Farms (we also get our grape juice from him) and the tomatoes, onions and peppers were organic (from the grocery store). So today's total food consumption cost was $20 with leftovers.

I was reading this article today and she says that the average American spends $100 per person a month on groceries. I personally think people spend more than that. My food budget before we changed foods was $500 a month. That includes my cleaners and paper products. I very rarely ever went over and usually had quite a bit leftover. I am interested to see if it has gone up or not now. January is such an expensive month to buy foods because there is not much fresh produce available locally but it will be mostly just Wyatt and I for the month.

Kids are all in bed and my book is waiting for me. I really like not having TV :)

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

wow 2013!

Where did 2012 go? I remember sitting with Mike December of 2010 and deciding to be processed free (or as close as we could) by December 2012 and it felt soooo far away. Here we are beyond what we ever thought we would be at this time. The changes we have made have made a big impact on me, I am shocked what food has been doing to us. Not just weight but mental, behavioural, and over all health. I feel amazing and proud of where we are right now and knowing I have so much more to learn in the year to come.

I have a friend that laughs at how we eat, not in a negative way but he just says "it is just eating real foods it doesn't need a name". I wish everyone would think that way and then we wouldn't have so many problems with health and obesity. We follow a Paleo diet but not 100%, we are not perfect at it and I am sure not many people are. We make a kick butt pizza with mozza cheese in the crust, no grains but cheese is dairy, my body hates dairy but I love that pizza! We have managed to go 2 months with having nothing non paleo (other than the odd brick of cheese) in our house. Over the holidays we did have some not-so-great-for-us foods at holiday parties and paid for it the following day(s) but it was so worth it.

January will be a busy month for me. I will be keeping track of every penny I spend on food (somewhat to prove a point to some people .. lol) and what we made in that time. I have so many people say they can not afford to eat this way but I think people can, I don't think money is the problem as much as having the time to do it. I am getting better with prepping and having all meals planned out to save time in the kitchen. Some ingredients can be more expensive but I save by not buying processed foods like crackers, cereal and snack foods. I also find we eat less food when we eat whole foods.

I did a squat challenge in December with some online friends and we did 2000 squats in the month of December. I feel like I should give us all a hand because that was tough .. lol. Now that it is done we have been wondering what to do next so we are doing a plank challenge and a sit up challenge.

This is the plank challenge. I am going to try my hardest to do the plank times in one plank but it may have to be split up because 4 minutes is one long plank!!

This is the squat challenge we did in December. We are going to do it again but with sit ups instead of squats. 

Twice a year I try to do a Facebook break. I find that other people's drama creeps into my life and I don't need it. I enjoy the break (even though I miss Facebook more than I like to admit) and it is nice since I am forced to actually talk to people more instead of relying on seeing everything on Facebook. It is a little crazy when I am gone because I feel like I miss so much and I can't help but wonder how people keep up with things without Facebook .. lol. I enjoy the groups I am in on Facebook and the amazing knowledge and support I have at almost anytime of the day or night. I have just started with Twitter because of this blog and I will also be taking a break from that for the month of January. The big thing that we will be taking a break from for the month (because Facebook wasn't enough .. lol) is television. I take pride in how little TV we watch in this house but it seems like it is creeping in more and more. When I was thinking about the Facebook break I decided that we would do a whole "unplugged" month and ditch the TV too. Today was our first day and all was fine until the evening since Wyatt usually gets to watch a tv show before bed. I told him that the TVs would be unplugged for 31 days and he looked at me like I was crazy and told me to just plug them back in :) I do love that the boys did not even notice until 7:30pm. I will be writing some posts about how it is going and what we are doing with our time without the TV.

Today is Mike's birthday so we had an amazing seafood dinner :) Everyone left full and happy. We had lobster, bacon wrapped scallops (we accidentally used mint toothpicks for them so they had a minty taste), steamed mussels, shrimp, garlic spinach, candied carrots, mashed faux-tatoes, and broc-cauli chowder. This was a special occasion dinner and will not be on the final budget for the month but we figured it out during dinner and the whole meal cost around $140 which isn't bad for the amount of seafood we had and we fed 7 people.

mmmmmm seafood!!

I will not be answering posts on Facebook or Twitter so leave a comment here for me :)

Friday, December 21, 2012

Eating healthy .. what does it cost me?

I get people tell me all the time that it is too expensive to eat the way we do. I know I pay more for certain things and less for others, I don't eat out, I don't buy expensive pre made foods or drinks. I think over all I don't really pay much more than I used to. In January (since we will have no TV and lots of time on our hands) I am going to keep track of everything we buy and cook during the month and how much it cost.

I will admit that the way I cook is a bit more time consuming but with some planning it can be super easy. I cook meals and freeze smaller portions for lunches or a supper in a hurry. We don't have a microwave so again I have to plan ahead even for heating up, I am thinking of getting a toaster oven though.

Once a week I will post what I spent on food. It is January so it will cost a bit more since I eat fresh produce and the price isn't so great this time of year. It will just be Wyatt and I most of the month.

I am curious how much it will be. I have not been very organized with our budget lately so I really do not know how much we have been paying for food (which is very odd for me since I am usually pretty on top of the budget).


Unplugged for January

Wow, January is coming up quick! In January we will be going "unplugged". We will be unplugging the televisions for the month and no social media (Facebook, twitter). I have decided to still blog and share what we do with our time without the technology in our faces.

It sounds like a simple thing to just unplug the televisions but really I think it will be hard. I fall asleep to the tv every night, tv is a part of Wyatt's bedtime routine, and it fills our day. We will find other things to do. I am going to have a busy basket with different things in it to keep Wyatt busy. We didn't have cable for 2 years and I loved it then we moved and had free cable for a bit which got me hooked back on tv.

January is kind of a hard month to do this because we are stuck inside more but I am sure we will still have fun with it.

We are continuing our Paleo eating even though this month has been hard. I am still making paleo meals and not buying junk but it is crazy the amount of treats there are everywhere this time of year.





Saturday, December 15, 2012

Why we eat the way we do

I had a great conversation at our local market this morning about eating "Paleo". I have to say that I don't agree with the reasons behind "Paleo" eating. I don't eat the way I do because someone believes that it is the way cave men ate. I believe that what grains have become are not good for you, modern grains are not what they were in the past. It would be hard today to find grains that are not affected by modern farming (GMOs, pesticides, over used soil). Everything is so processed even "whole" grains that you buy in stores. I am still learning about grains and my diet and in the new year we may reintroduce some of the foods but I know I have never felt better and it is only making good changes in Wyatt.

Wyatt's behaviour has changed so drastically and we can see the immediate reaction to certain foods. I think it is so much more real when you actually see it happen in front of you. I don't think it is fair to Wyatt to give him the "treats" when we are out and then have him lose control because of them. This is such a hard time of year to make these changes since candy and treats are everywhere. We have had to take a break from some of the holiday parties and parades but we have done many fun holiday activities without the holiday foods.

The changes in food have made me realize how much we put on food in many of ways. A reward, a punishment, an emotional reaction, a way to celebrate or a way to socialize. I no longer meet a friend in a coffee shop (since I can't eat or drink anything there), I can't bribe the kids that if they are good at the grocery store we will get a cookie before we go, or make our friday game night about "fun" food like pizza and chips. We still make food that the kids find fun and they help me make it (always gives me the opportunity to talk to them about why we eat what we do).

Since we changed we have found new things to do with our time and our focus is no longer on food. I have communicated so much more with the children about their bodies and how we take care of them. The boys are also much more involved in choosing what we eat and why we eat certain foods together. It is more than just our eating it's our way of living and I am so happy that we made the change we did.