Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Wellness Wednesday ~

Dun Da Da! Here it is ~ the post you've all been anxiously awaiting ~ my first official weekly post. Don't let the title fool ya. I'm not going to sit here and try to tell you that everything you're doing is bad and everything I'm doing is right. I just want to share with you what is working for me and if you want to try it, then great!

I feel like I've been on this journey my entire life. I've always (and when I say always I mean since I started running Summer Track when I was 5) been involved in sports in some fashion and even in my adult years have stayed pretty active. So that's nothing new. What is new, or what has been evolving over the last 7 years, is my interest in how nutrition plays a part in our health and how cleaning up the toxins in our home environment can keep us well.

I will not get all scientific on this blog...can you say boring? With the crazy amount of info you can find on the web, I encourage all you guys to do a little research and learn for yourselves. After all, we have to be our own advocates when it comes to our health. What I will do is point you in different directions, share recipes I have found on some pretty cool blogs and let you know when I come across a really great product or mind-blowing information.

If you are all still awake, I would love to share a fantastic chocolate chip cookie recipe. What!?! Yes, you read that right. Chocolate Chip Cookies! So the other day I was checking my email and came across the weekly recap message from one of my favorite blogs (I sometimes think that the woman who writes this blog and I were separated at birth, anyway.) The blog is called Wellness Mama and you can find her along with her cookie recipe here. 

This may sound crazy, but I was so excited about this recipe and soon found myself hoping, wishing and praying that this recipe would find me at the end of my cookie quest. I can not tell you how many recipes I have tried; how many dollars worth of ingredients I have wasted in search of THE cookie recipe. Well, the search is over. (I have Survivor's song 'The Search is Over' in my head right now. Weren't the 80's the best? If you've never heard that song, you should look it up.)

I followed her recipe precisely and they turned out perfect. The best part and what puts them on my healthy list is that they are gluten free and I'm not just talking gluten free like the junk you find at the grocery store. I'm talking 'made with almond flour gluten free.' Most gluten free products you find at the grocery store are made with white rice flour and white potato flour. These products are still high on the glycemic index and will spike your blood sugar super fast, so read your labels. It is my humble opinion that everyone has a sensitivity to wheat gluten and would benefit by cutting it out of their diet, but we all need to be careful of what we replace our wheat products with. If you have a health issue, just for fun cut gluten out of your diet for a month and see what happens.

A beautiful stack of chocolate chip cookie yumminess

 Don't they look like real cookies? It's because they are real and they are really delicious! As a side note, they do contain real sugar which I admit is not healthy at all, but I feel like if I can treat my family with a great homemade cookie that they love and is also wheat free then I have won a small victory in this battle for our health that I seem to be facing everyday.

I hope you check out the Wellness Mama blog  and try the cookie recipe. You're going to love it, I promise!

Monday, August 27, 2012

What Not to Wear ~

Ok, I'm about to put something out there that may make me look like a bad goes...I did not take my kids shopping for school clothes. Why is it that this should make me feel guilty? It's ridiculous. Where is the unwritten rule in society that says we have to go buy our children a new wardrobe because school is starting. For one thing it's still 100 degrees outside so I'm not going to go buy winter clothes and I'm not about to spend money on more summer clothes that they are only going to wear for one more month. So, there it is, a confession of sorts. That being said, my kids are perfectly fine with this. Neither one of them wanted to go shopping. In fact, shopping is on the bottom of their "fun things to do" list. So, when the weather starts cooling off, I will make a trip to town and in the peace, tranquility and solitude of my aloneness I will shop for my poor children a few new outfits to get them through the winter. :)

Here they are all ready to start a new school year ~ 2nd and 5th grades. 

As hard as I tried to be prepared for the first day of school, the morning still turned out to be a hectic one. Notice the cute white shirt? Well, K decided she would get a jump on things and go put her backpack in the Tahoe while I was finishing up breakfast; the dogs decided to get a jump on her. Yes, muddy paw prints on her pretty white shirt. Daddy to the rescue. As she's crying, R is patiently trying to remove the muddy paw prints. He did a great job. We eat breakfast, head out the door for a "First Day of School" pic and you guessed it...another muddy paw print. Are you kidding me?? More tears, more help from Daddy and we're off in hopes that we're not tardy on the first day. 

We managed to get there on time and I managed to get a smile out of her. See the name tag on the table? My kids have always had an aversion to name tags. I have no idea why, but her teacher and I have been wondering for a few weeks how we they were going to work this one out. I'm anxious to talk to her this afternoon and see who won. :)

No pics of R. He's a big 5th grader now and the last thing he needs is his mommarazzi embarrassing him on the first day. 

I had to include a pic of my adorable niece and nephew. H is starting Kinder today and is so excited. My nephew, also H (that could get confusing) is starting 3rd and a brand new school. I know they are going to have a great day!

So I didn't get this posted before we left for our annual 1st day of school lunch and now here it is "after school." The kids had a great day. Nothing too extraordinary happened. R informed me that the first day of school is just like any other day and K wore her name tag until it fell off at the end of the day. Victory! My niece loved running around outside and the cafeteria; my nephew would much rather be outside working with his dad and is not too happy about school messing with his summer. Come to think of it, I'm pretty sure that's what R would rather be doing too. 

We're all having a little snack and then heading out the door for football practice. I looked at my mental calendar today and realized there is not one night during the following weeks that we don't have somewhere to be. I love these busy days that are upon us. I'm looking forward to Fall and the cool crisp mornings and bidding farewell to the... 

dog days of summer. :)

p.s. the moral of the story (if there is a moral) could be: don't wear a white shirt on the first day of school when you have puppies with muddy paws who are excited to see you in the morning. 

Friday, August 24, 2012

A Little West Texas Road Trip ~

Well, here we are. The last weekend of Summer '12. I really can't believe how fast this summer has gone. 

I have to admit I'm in a bit of a state of mourning right now. This may sound a little crazy because I'm not mourning the loss of a loved one or even the end of summer. I hesitate to even admit it because it might make me sound like a brat. Ok, here it is...we didn't get to go on our yearly trip to Ruidoso. :( This is the first year we haven't gone to the mountains in 15 years. I think I have the right to be sad. In the past we've always gone the last weekend of summer; now that R is playing football and Big R is coaching all (and I mean ALL) of our time is taken. Isn't this just the way life is? As the kids grow, different things will take the place of other things. I guess I never thought our trip to Ruidoso would be replaced by Pop Warner football work outs. Don't get me wrong, I love that R's playing football...I just want to go to the mountains. Ok, I'm a brat. Enough whining...let's move on.

We did get to take a fun little road trip a couple of weeks ago with some great friends. For years we've been talking about heading north to Palo Duro Canyon to see the musical "Texas." How crazy is it that we live just a few short hours away yet have never been. What's even crazier is that I grew up in West Texas; have spent the entire first 40 years of my life in West Texas and have never been. I even had a cousin perform in the musical when we were in college and didn't go. Crazy. 

The food was good. Didn't quite fit into my "plan" but I have a hard time passing up bar-b-q and potato salad.

They had a series of maps pin pointing all the places people who had traveled to see the show were from. The first was a Texas map, the next one was an US map. The kids are looking at the world map. It was really neat to see how far people had traveled to see the show. All the pins in the maps were from this year alone. Pretty cool. During the show they gave an award to the person who traveled the farthest. He was from Japan. 

The boys spent a fair amount of time whittling wood. Just a side note: every time I think of whittling wood, say the words "whittling wood" or see someone whittling wood, I think about the moving "Son In Law" with Pauly Shore. I know, I'm weird.

So there it is ~ our Palo Duro Adventure. The show was great. K had a thousand questions about the stage, the actors, the dancers, the horses, the set. The thunder, lighting and fireworks were awesome. She had questions about those too. It was fun to experience another 'first' together. Cameras were not allowed, so no pics of the actual show. We'll definitely go back in a few years. I mean why not? It's practically in our backyard. :)

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

July Wrap-up ~

Yes, I'm wrapping up the month of July in the middle of August. And Yes, I haven't blogged in almost a month. Everyday I feel a gravitational pull towards my laptop, but never seem to find the time to actually sit down. We've been busy over the last several weeks and now that the first day of school is breathing down my neck, I'm starting to feel that all familiar urgency/panic that I feel this time every year. Is it just me or can you literally feel a surge of energy or some kind of momentum pulling us into September. It almost feels like a snowball rolling down a hill and I'm stuck in the middle; you know like in those cartoons where all you can see are the arms and legs sticking out. Anyway, in an attempt to slow down a bit and savor every last morsel of summer I thought I would recap what we've been up to the last few weeks...

We've helped Daddy on the farm, watched the cotton grow and prayed for rain...

We spent a fabulous yet exhausting week at VBS (I was suffering from a sinus thing and thought about throwing in the towel many times during this week, but somehow I just couldn't not be there.)

We've played Play-Do. This is K's creation...

And R worked on this masterpiece.

We spent 5 glorious days at the lake. K learned to knee board and ski, R learned to ski and wakeboard; he even started jumping the wakes ~ pretty awesome! We also logged many boat hours pulling the tube around and around and around. K is one little dare devil and once we convinced her there were no sharks in the lake, she was unstoppable. :)

This is what we look like after a day on the water. I know ~ scary.

We came home from the lake on Christen's birthday, so we made our trip to the cemetery the next day. K went with me to buy flowers. She picked out some funky zebra striped daisies that I'm pretty sure her sister would think were totally cool.

So, that's it...July in a nutshell. 

I'm working on a blogging schedule. Still haven't put anything in writing yet, partially because I don't know if I want to limit myself to certain things I have to post on certain days. So far I like my "fly by the seat of my pants" kinda blog, but I feel like if I had a schedule more thoughts would get recorded. Anyway, just a thought. Hopefully you'll hear from me before the end of August. :)

Blessings ~


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