Sunday, December 4, 2016

Whole Family Whole30 - We made it!!

Day 22
*Liza and Jason have been counting down the days to Thanksgiving... to stuffing and dessert! So I took the opportunity to talk to them about how they feel when they eat well. They both acknowledged again that they like how their stomachs feel... but Liza surprised me when she said, "I feel more awake!" Jason admitted that he did as well and we realized that Liza has been waking up a lot easier in the mornings. We used to have to kind of drag her out of bed, but now she just pops up and is ready to go. Or she is already awake when it's time to wake up.


Day 23
*They seriously can't wait for Thanksgiving dinner!


Day 24
*Thanksgiving!
*I didn't end up having any cheats because I already know the effects of gluten and dairy and just stuck to things that end up being whole30 approved anyways. But Mike, Liza and Jason all enjoyed the full meal and dessert. I thought they were going to lick their dessert plates.
*Mike and Jason claim they felt fine after eating everything. Full, maybe bloated... but overall fine. Liza's stomach got crampy. We'll have to sort that out in the reintroduction and see if it's something specific.


Day 25
*Liza's feet are bothering her today. Achy and restless feeling. Could it be a result of something she ate last night? Who knows. I do know that when I reintroduced dairy after my last w30 that my legs got really achy. It's a feeling I had been having often, but haven't had since going dairy free. Again.... looking forward to what we learn during the reintroduction. 
*While we were grocery shopping, Jason pointed to an eggplant and asked if we could get one. We never cooked one up before. But for 99cents?? Why not! I love that Liza and Jason are more adventurous with food. Trying so many things that they never would have tried before. Asking me to buy things I normally don't by so we can try them. This has been an interesting experience!


Day 26
*Our town has an awesome Christmas parade, so we spent our evening at that. Last year was the first time we went, but tradition was started. Go to the parade, collect tons of candy, come home, have hot drinks and sort the candy while watching a movie. We had to have hot tea instead of hot chocolate, and they were definitely tempted while playing with their candy. But it's all sorted and hidden with their Halloween candy.





Day 27
*Is it over yet? I am sooo tired of cooking. And packing difficult to pack lunches. I just want food to be easy again! I want some meals that aren't a lot of work. And I REALLY want someone to come do my dishes for me!!


Day 28
*I've been unusually tired. That's odd for a w30. I usually sleep really well when I'm eating well, but I think stress is winning this week and keeping me from sleeping well... and causing the exhaustion.
*We are all really wanting some good snacks... like chocolate. Liza and Jason can't wait for dairy reintroduction day because they get ice cream!


Day 29
*We decided we'll be going a few extra days. I want to do dairy reintroduction on Sunday when we don't have anything else going on. Then legumes mid-week, gluten the following weekend, non-gluten grains mid-week. Then we will be done... just in time for the Christmas parties!
*Mike cooked up the eggplant today... so good! Breaded with almond flour and topped with crushed tomatoes and some seasoning. We had burgers tonight too... no buns. But I found that the eggplant on top of the burger is delicious! I'm so excited to have a new side! Jason and Liza thought it was good too!


Day 30
*Jason came home from school today, looked at me with his sad face and said, "During Global Learning Lab the teacher made a meal from Brazil (they've been learning about Brazil all quarter) and I couldn't eat it." I asked if it was hard and he said yes. But he loves how strong he feels for sticking to the plan instead of giving in. He's been amazing. I think he has had the most challenges of all of us and he has stayed strong each time!
*Liza faced the same challenge at school... but she remembered that she had an extra Lara Bar in her backpack for occasions like this and was allowed to eat it. Jason was really bummed that he didn't think of that!


Day 31
*Still going.
*I didn't think it was possible... but I'm getting tired of potatoes. We have potatoes as a side nearly every night. I want rice. Or quinoa. Or something other than potatoes!!! 




Day 32
*Now that the 30 days are officially over we are finding it harder and harder to stay motivated. I sent Mike to TJMaxx to hunt down the last packs of potato chips that fit w30... even though w30 discourages snacking. But all the ingredients are compliant so we ate... or more like devoured the small bag.


Day 33
*Jason faced another challenge today... a birthday party. Pizza, chips, cake. He told me it was probably the hardest challenge of the whole whole30 for him because they had ice cream cake. But I sent him with some of his own food and when I went back to get him, some of the other moms that were there were telling me how they were encouraging him and surprised at how well he is doing with the diet. Jason is amazing! Liza might have just wanted to skip the party... She went out with Mike this morning and they stopped at the coffee/bake shop so Mike could get a coffee and Liza stayed in the car because she didn't want to have to look at all the yumminess.


Today starts the reintroduction!

I still can't believe we actually did an entire month... and then some! And that we are sticking it out for the reintroduction. Liza and Jason continue to amaze me with their strength. They have passed up birthday treats at school. They have sat by their friends at lunch watching them eat sandwiches and desserts and doritoes, and yet they remained so strong.

I didn't see as much change in Liza's issues as I had hoped for, but that doesn't mean the w30 was a waste.
1. We are more healthy.
2. I lost 5.5 pounds and Mike lost more. (Jerk)
3. We all feel really good.
4. We learned that we CAN say no to foods.
5. We have had great discussions about being healthy.
6. We found new foods that we like.
7. Liza's molluscum is almost all cleared up.
8. Her eczema is looking sooo much better and I hope it continues to heal.

The newest skin issue that started a week before we started the w30... it seemed to just take over her arms mid-way through the w30. It has been a bit discouraging because we were hoping for solutions and instead got a worse rash. But we are going to continue looking for the cause of Liza's skin issues and we won't give up until we find real answers.

I'm so glad we did the w30 as a family. It's been an experience and I wish I would have kept track of how many apples, bananas and potatoes we have gone through! I'm certain it's a ridiculous amount!

On to the reintroduction!



Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Whole Family Whole30 - Notes on Week 3

Day 15
*We made it halfway!
*We went to see a movie today. The theater we like is 50 minutes away and we always go to the early movies that start around 11:30. This causes a problem... when to eat lunch? 10:30 is too early. And after the movie is way too late. So we usually pack... and that's easy when you can just pack a PBJ and a cheese stick. W30 complicates things. We ended up with tuna mixed with salsa and homemade mayo, and cucumber slices to put it on. And then we ate on the way. Liza and Jason ended up making a bit of a mess... but it worked.


Day 16
*The molluscum on Liza's arms continues to get better and better! We are pretty excited about this!
*I am soooo over cooking. And doing dishes. If only I had a dishwasher!!


Day 17
*Liza and Jason are counting down to Thanksgiving when they will be allowed to go off plan for a meal to celebrate. They are talking about how they can't wait to feast!!


Day 18
*Honestly... I can't believe we have made it this far. When we first started I thought we might make it two weeks and then have to adjust. But nope. We are still rockin' the Whole30!!
*It helps that every morning when I look at Liza's skin issues I see more and more improvement! More of the molluscum is GONE!! This is really exciting to me and Liza.
*We are starting to repeat meals. I hope the kids don't mind.


Day 19
*I really REALLY wish I had a dishwasher. I am sooo tired of doing all the dishes that go with all the cooking.
*I'm an emotional eater and I have had sooo much stress lately and just want to EAT. Not W30 food... emotional eating food. It's been a struggle but I've stayed the course. But I really really want some chocolate.


Day 20
*Liza and Jason are eating foods that they used to always say they didn't like... foods like peppers and onions! And cabbage.
*Liza's skin issues keep looking better and better, but I don't think it will be all the way clear by 30 days. She also got a new rash a few days ago on her face and arms. It seems to be clearing but it's weird. The doc doesn't even know what it is.


Day 21
*Three weeks!!!!
*Everyone is starting to think about the reintroduction. And Thanksgiving. Jason just wants some bread!
*Mike gets laid off from roofing every winter. He started up his part time winter job today... at our neighborhood bakery! Talk about temptation!
*The new rashy thing that Liza developed is still a problem. It almost looks like it could be more eczema on her arms... but I don't really think that is what it is. At least I hope it isn't!!! Because the patch that has been there for a year is looking really good!


Where am I at?
I'm tired of cooking.
I'm tired of doing the dishes.
I want to eat all the things I can not eat. 
I want to quit... but for Liza... I won't. I will continue through this w30 because my kids are rocking it like champs! They are so strong!


Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Whole Family Whole30 - Notes on Week 2

Day 8
*I had a total meltdown while cooking dinner. I was just overwhelmed with stress and I didn't realize how involved dinner was... and I lost it for a bit. But dinner turned out to be sooo good! A casserole... and it's been a loooong time since I've had a casserole.
*Liza realized that she had a small cheat yesterday. She didn't even realize it until today. Her math teacher rewards with mini laffy taffy. Liza said as she looked at the container of laffy taffy today it came to her... she ate one yesterday. I love that she was honest and it's also kind of funny that it took her an entire day to realize that SHE ATE A PIECE OF CANDY ON THE W30! :)
*I was really tired today. I hope the energy phase hits soon.
*I am wearing clothes that I wouldn't have dared to wear a week ago. It's amazing how different I feel without all those pounds of bloat!


Day 9
*Liza had a dream that she was eating a piece of cherry pie and realized that it wasn't something she should eat on w30... so we decided she could eat half of it and then it would only be half cheating.
*Me and Mike were discussing how well Liza and Jason are doing. It seems they have just accepted that this is what we are doing. They rarely talk about foods they wish they could have and they don't ask for snacks anymore. I believe it's because our meals are fulfilling and they don't feel like they need a snack.


Day 10
*One of the things I wasn't looking forward to was having to get breakfast for the kids every morning. They were always so good about getting a bowl of cereal or a bagel or making oatmeal on their own. I'm happy to report that they are back to being independent at breakfast! They have both learned to make the banana breakfast on their own and Jason makes his own eggs in the microwave. (It's how Mike does it and that's how Jason likes them now.)
*We had an interesting conversation today...
JASON: I can't wait until we can eat real food again.
ME: What do you mean? We ARE eating real food.
LIZA: Real food like pizza!
JASON: And bread. And cereal. And stuff like that!


Day 11
*Jason was invited to a play date today where there would be pizza and snacks. We ate lunch before we went and packed some w30 snacks so he would have something eat when everyone else ate.
*I've been liking having meals in the crockpot this week. Makes dinner time a lot easier.
*I can not tell at all if Liza's eczema is improving or not. Of course, it's still early in the plan so we'll just keep watching it.


Days 12 and 13
*Nothing to report. W30 is starting to feel normal around here.


Day 14
*While I can't really tell what is happening with Liza's eczema, I have noticed something else. She also has molluscum. We were told this is a virus and... basically it look like pimple type spots. Near her armpit. And it was spreading. We were also told that there is nothing you can do to treat it and it could take up to two years to clear up! BUT!!!! It's going away! Ever since starting the diet it's like they are just drying up and going away. There are some molluscum spots in the middle of her eczema and I read that eczema sometimes forms around molluscum. Those spots are getting smaller as well so we are anxiously waiting to see what happens as the molluscum continues to clear up.
*Today was a fun mail day for Liza and Jason. They got cards of encouragement and $5 from their grandma and grandpa for doing so good with such a tough thing. They also got tea and a note from a friend of mine that wanted to encourage them. They were so excited and immediately made some tea! They enjoyed having a flavorful drink... because sometimes water gets old.


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Some recipes we loved this week...
Chicken Zoodle Soup
Roast in the crockpot
Turkey, Broccoli, and Mashed Cauliflower Casserole
Chicken Apple and Sweet Potato - Crockpot meal, the kids didn't really like it but I thought it was good!

Frozen grapes are a great snack.

Monday, November 7, 2016

Whole Family Whole30 - Notes on the first week.

Day 1
*We were motivated.
*There were lots of questions about what we could and could not eat.
*Things got tough when the kids got home from school and claimed I can't do this. I didn't do a good job with their lunches and felt pretty bad about that. I was determined to do better.
*We made it to the end of the day and I rewarded the kids with a fruit smoothie. Not totally Whole30 legit as the Whole30 people frown upon smoothies or too much fruit at once. But hey... I had to keep in mind that they are only 8 and 10 and they are doing a diet that most adults will never bother to try because they say they just couldn't do it. And I had to keep our goal in mind, which is to determine if food is a factor in Liza's eczema.


Day 2
I was shopping and saw emoji mugs with my kids favorite emojis. I bought them with the plan to put all the food in the emoji bowls because how could anything taste bad in them!? I gave them to the kids and they had their dinner in them. Jason said, "These bowls just saved the month!" Well worth the extra money spent!

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Day 3
*We all woke up and felt out of it. Tired.
*At breakfast Jason said, "I wish I could eat yogurt." He misses his food.
*I was so proud of Jason! His teacher rewards with tootsie rolls and he brought his home so we could add it to his hidden candy stash. He could have chose to eat it and I would have never known... but he didn't.
*We rewarded the kids with a movie night... because we were too tired to do anything else and we made a big deal about letting them watch a movie that we had decided they weren't ready for two years ago. We figure if they are ready for the Whole30 that they are now ready for the movie as well.
*We had fajitas for dinner. Seasoned chicken, peppers and onions. We topped it with salsa and wrapped it in a big leaf of lettuce. Wrapping it in lettuce was new to all of us but we had fun laughing at the messes we were making. Liza said it's kind of fun trying new ways to eat things. Their mindset about the w30 is changing!


Day 4
*We all woke up feeling so much better.
*Our stomachs feel good.
*I know that when doing a w30 they say you shouldn't step on the scale till it's over because they don't want the focus to be on weightloss. Well this is my third w30 so if I want to step on the scale, I'm going to step on the scale. :) I've already lost 3.4 pounds.
*The crazy food dreams have started. Last week Liza and Jason told me they never got anything out of a vending machine. Well last night I dreamed that we found a massive vending machine with everything in it. I was bummed that I couldn't get the peanut m&ms (my favorite comfort food in the past) because they have dairy. But I let Liza pay for and punch in the numbers for a pop. As it landed in our hands I remembered we were doing the w30 and had to disappoint her by telling her we would have to hide it with her candy and save it till the end.
*Mike dreamed about extra large packs of fresh baked buns on clearance for 80cents.

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I asked them how they felt about the Whole30. This is Jason's "eh" face.

Day 5
*Liza and Jason amaze me! They went to a birthday party today and passed on the ice cream, cupcakes and pizza. We rewarded them with a smoothie.
*We are having great conversations about how different our stomachs feel when we eat good food and stay away from the junk. Liza and Jason are learning what it is like to feel healthy on the inside... and it feels good!
*We are no longer using the medicated cream for Liza's eczema. I realized that if we continued to use it and had good results, I wouldn't know if it was because of the medicine or the diet.


Day 6
*Liza and Jason are becoming more willing to try different foods. They are appreciating food more and eating things they used to always pass on. They are learning that real food is real good!
*Liza had a dream that she walked to the pizza shop around the corner to buy a pop, but when she got there she remembered she couldn't have it, so she bought water instead. She's making the right choices even in her dreams!! :)

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Day 7
*Lunches are getting easier to pack for the kids now that we have some leftovers built up.
*We've made it one week without any real cheats. I have allowed them to use ketchup a few times... scrambled eggs are hard to eat plain and so is plain chicken. Other than that, we've all stuck to the plan!
*I always lose several pounds when doing w30 and was concerned that Liza and Jason might lose too much weight. They are small enough as it is. I decided to monitor their weight weekly and found that they have not lost any weight at all.


Honestly, I can't believe we all made it a week! And I can't believe that Liza and Jason are doing so good! Sure... they miss some foods. Who wouldn't!?! But they press on and keep going.

I personally feel like I spend far too much time thinking about food... what will we have? What meat needs to thaw? How long will it take to cook this? Do I have enough fruits and veggies to pack for lunches tomorrow? Food... food... food! But we are eating really well and no one is going hungry. Here are some recipes we used this week...

Banana Coconut Breakfast Bowl
Ground Beef and Cabbage
Fajitas... topped with salsa and wrapped in lettuce
Homemade Mayo... we also add seasonings to the mayo to make a dip for our veggies
Apple and sweet potato breakfast bake
Homemade Ghee (you cook the dairy out of butter)
Apple Cider Pulled Pork... I loooved having a meal to put in the crock after all the cooking I've been doing.

Other meals we had were...
Chicken and potatoes and veggies
Spaghetti squash with meat sauce and peppers and onions
Turkey, potatoes, green beans, and baked apples

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Whole Family Whole30

Let me go back a few years and explain how we got to this point...

After the kids were born, grown a bit, and sleeping through the night... and by through the night I mean a solid 8-10 hours without any waking... I found that I was STILL completely exhausted all the time. I went to bed tired and I woke up tired. I went through my days feeling like I just needed a nap.

I finally went to the doctor all please tell me why I'm tired all. the. time. Doc said I was depressed and a pill would make me happy again in no time. I said, "Oh, ok." and walked out without the prescription. Not because I think medicine is bad, but because I believe in finding the cause instead of just treating a symptom. I wasn't tired because I was depressed... I was depressed because I was tired.

Years later I found that I had hormone imbalance issues and treating that made me feel much better. Then I did a Whole30 and when reintroducing the foods I had cut out, I realized that gluten made me tired! It gave me the foggy brain and headaches I could never get to go away. When I stopped eating gluten, the rest of the tiredness that wasn't helped by the hormone treatment... gone!

So now I know how much trouble food can make for a body.

Fast forward to this week...

Liza has had eczema on her arm for quite a while now. I didn't know that was what it was until we went to the doctor a week ago. The doc gave us a prescription cream, which we are using for now. However, on the ride home I knew we would be doing another Whole30... this time for Liza.

I have heard countless people talk of how healing their gut healed their skin. Eczema, psoriasis, other issues... cleared up in 30 days just by changing diet.

We are determined to find the root.

I spent a lot of time talking to Liza about it. I wanted her to be the one to say I want to do this. It took two days but she finally got excited about the idea and became determined to do the Whole30.

I made a meal plan.
The kids had their final candy binge then bagged up the rest and told us to hide it where they can't find it.
Mike cleaned out the cupboards and got rid of what we can't eat and won't last for 30 days.
I went grocery shopping.
And yesterday was day 1 of what we are calling the Whole Family Whole30.

Of course we wouldn't make Liza do it alone! Jason is struggling the most with the idea because he doesn't have a real reason to do it... other than being a support for his sister. I think I motivated him a bit more last night when I told him it will make him stronger and his muscles might show up a little more. He liked that!!

It wasn't easy, but we survived the first day!

There were lots of questions about what they could and couldn't have.
Can I have tootsie rolls, because that's what my teacher gives us?
What about goldfish?
Are we allowed bread?
What are we going to do when someone brings a birthday treat to school.
Can we have crackers?

Nope. Just meat, eggs, fruits, nuts, and veggies.

Will we last the entire 30 days? Nope... Because Thanksgiving is on day 24. But we are giving this a real shot and we are hoping to find the reason behind Liza's eczema so she doesn't have to spend the rest of her life treating it and trying to keep it under control.

Wish us luck! It's going to be tough... especially if we all hit the cranky stage of detox on the same day!!

The Wicks are getting healthy (again) and searching for real, lasting answers!

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