Game Day Snacks

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We had friends over for a football game this past weekend. Friend and football means snacks. Snacks sure have changed quite a bit since we started hosting football gatherings (sorry nachos).

Due to some autoimmune complications and food test results, my Doctor recommended a “no-lectin” diet. Lectins are in many things so it is pretty restrictive BUT I’ll say… I went lectin free for a few weeks before the holidays and now again that we’re back home. I’m following Dr. Gundry’s Plant Paradox plan and he makes it as easy as you can when you’re on a super restrictive diet. The diet is amazing for easing inflammation and increasing energy & focus.

Bill kindly agreed to give it a shot – so much easier if the whole crew is on the same page. He dropped about 10 pounds in the first 7-10 days and also snores much less. He’s feeling good and he has great energy despite a massive shift in eating habits. I also lost about 5-6 pounds in the same period and am sleeping better again.

While it’s relatively easy to keep to your diet as a family, it can be hard when you go out or even entertain at home. However, with a few adjustments and some creative solutions, it is possible. For example, I substitute romaine tips for chips with the guacamole and found a delicious nut milk cheese without all the additives, etc. The cocktail sauce does have tomatoes (lots of lectins) but if you remove the skins and seeds, you solve most of the lectin issue so we had only a little bit. Honestly, I can only have a little shrimp or fish anyway because of my current mercury levels.

The best thing about this diet is that really do get so many leafy greens and healthy vegetables into your body. It definitely helps with energy and focus. It’s also really easy to do with the entire family. The recipes in the book and supplemental cookbook are amazing. Our kids have loved many of them – for example, the grilled portobello mushroom pizza with vegan pesto and prosciutto is amazing. As is the halibut with lentils and mushroom ragout (probably one of the best things I’ve cooked before).

I highly recommend checking out his book and giving the cleanse / program a chance. It’s a game changer and a lifestyle for sure. Having been religious about food ingredients and free of gluten, dairy, corn, soy, and eggs for years now, the shift to a slightly more restrictive food plan wasn’t that big an issue for me. I imagine it may be more noticeable for someone who is regularly or nearly exclusively enjoying those food types. But, even my Bill did it with such success and very little complaint if any. In fact, I heard him say how this diet may be his new normal moving forward. While I predict he’ll allow for a few cheat meals on occasion, I’m super proud of him for embracing this change and enjoying the results.

 

Between Dances

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Finley & Holden both have Hip Hop Dance classes on Fridays. Unfortunately, the classes are back to back instead of simultaneously so we’re there for about 2 hours. It does give us 1×1 time with the kiddos, so it isn’t all bad. Finley found a Minecraft book during our last visit and she insisted on Bill reading it for the entire hour Holden was in class. I think he was exhausted. She was fully into it the entire time.

The kids knew about Minecraft before but really got into it while visiting their cousins. I’m shocked at how quickly they both pick up the lingo and strategy. I still know nothing about it. I see our school has an enrichment program surrounding Minecraft so I guess it isn’t all bad. At least Bill should be pretty well versed after the educational reading last week. But of course, if you were going to bet on which parent would know more about video gaming, it would definitely be Bill… hands down.

And Holden just cracked us up digging through my purse finding all the things Finley had snuck in there. She loves having a “bag of tricks” so to speak so she’s never bored. I, in turn, am always amazed just how many of her things end up in my purse. It gets heavy!

Mood

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This has been our view more days than not lately. It’s certainly peaceful and pretty. While we’re missing the sun something fierce, this weather does keep me indoors working away at that list of projects I’m always eluding too… Dad, if you’re keeping your fingers crossed the weather stays like this so you have less to do when you visit, you just may be in luck!

Weekend Vibes

We’re home this weekend and it is lovely. Sometimes you just need a quiet weekend to tackle projects & hang out with each other. Finley and I did a pilates reformer workout together – it required some balance and patience to incorporate her little body on the carriage with me but we did it! She was so proud. Holden continued to work on his school project about the UK and got some much needed playing catch time with Bill. Emmy caught her first ball mid-air which made everyone happy. I tackled updating our pantry and adding shelves for shoes & sweaters to my closet.

It feels good to get things all squared away. It also feels good to just enjoy the weekend – to get things done but not be in a rush or timeline.  Also… don’t look too closely at those labels. I know I’m missing a few!

Big kid date

The little Miss was at a play date and Bill was in the city so this nugget and I got some one on one time. I didn’t have to play catch (his favorite game) as it was crazy rainy outside but we still had a great time. I love this cute little man so much – so kind and snuggly. I’m in denial he’s a few months from turning 8… 8! It’s crazy.

It’s also crazy how much fun we had doing math problems and writing a report of holiday traditions in the UK. I don’t remember doing any of these things in 2nd grade honestly – I doubt we were solving problems like 123 – 66 = ?? It’s impressive. And we have to show different strategies to solve the problems. It’s a fun challenge. The kid is a bit of a number shark – even if he has a tendency to write his 5’s backward and they look like an S. I did have to tease him that the strategy was correct but S7 was not!

First Rehearsal – She Persisted, the Musical

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What a treat! Last night friends and I were invited to observe the first rehearsal with the cast, crew and creative team for She Persisted, the Musical, based on Chelsea Clinton’s book, She Persisted: 13 American Women Who Changed the World. I’m so excited for this production to come to life – it’s an amazingly talented all-female cast with an exceptional crew of artists, composers, designers, and talent shaping this production. I’m excited for my daughter to see it as well as my son. We need both to change the world!

There will likely be lots more updates on this amazing performance – the process and the events we’re doing in conjunction with the show. I’m obsessing. Sorry, not sorry! Local friends… book your seats now, or do your research on the Trailblazer fund, and support bringing underrepresented authors, artists, and characters to the stage, and join me in attending a really wonderful event with Chelsea in March!

 

My Climber

It’s been so cold and rainy lately with only rain in the forecast for weeks to come. I need a warm sunny day, which doesn’t look likely. In updating computer operating systems, I came across this bright and sunny photo of my baby climbing a tree. This is the tree right outside of her gymnastics class. She cannot leave gymnastics without climbing this tree and she’s always so proud of herself once she has. Such a strong independent girl.

Also… I think she grew several inches since this photo was snapped about 4 months ago. We put some leggings on her yesterday and they were a good 3″ too short! Thankfully she still tries to snuggle me with all her parts on my lap, in a tiny ball, so I am not crying as hard over the fact that she’s growing at lightning speeds.

Crazy Dog

Someone looks like she’s settling into a comfy life back home. So thankful Dorian and Rob take such good care of her while we travel. It’s also lovely to get her home. Life is certainly quiet and boring when she’s not around.

Fin & the Bear

It’s always a good day when you get to have Bookie Bear come home with you from school. This photo happened to be on school picture day when Finley was the line leader and got to carry Bookie out to the photo location. Then she got to hold him during some of her photos and it is really sweet. She was so proud – she loves being a big kid & and a helper and she adores this little bear.