Monday, December 28, 2009

Meal Plan Monday

We had a fabulous Christmas!  We were blessed to spend 3 days in Lancaster, PA.  We did not eat 'nourishing', but we had a lot of fun and stayed in decent spirits and health.  It was probably the hours spent swimming. :)  I'm definitely off this week, so this will probably change some.  But, here is my menu for the week. Drew has to work until midnight on Thursday.  Yuck!  We'll probably be in bed normal time on Thursday.  And no plans for New Years Day at the moment.

Breakfast and supper options

Lunch, served with kombucha for all:

Monday: Leftover Beef Soup and rice
Tuesday: Fish Cakes
Wednesday: Liver and Rice Casserole
Thursday: Roast Chicken
Friday: Pasta and Meatballs
Saturday: Chicken Soup
Sunday: Fried Potatoes and Meat

Monday, December 21, 2009

Meal Plan Monday

Hee hee. Silly me.  I posted the regular Meal Plan, but didn't think about the fact that it's Christmas.  I can get pretty focused sometimes.  :)  

My very generous MIL is taking the whole family to Lancaster, PA for 2 nights-count them 2-in a hotel!  We'll obviously be eating out some.  But I am also going to bring along cut up pieces of cheese, granola, milk, yogurt, smoothies and some peanut butter for in the hotel for the meals we actually stay in the hotel for (they have a refrigerator-woo hoo!).  I would like us to eat relatively nourishing, esp considering we will all have a much more fun time if we are comfortable and sane.  I'm noting more and more how the wrong foods turn us into grouchy, unstable, selfish, easily annoyed people.  Not a great way to be on a vacation! 

So, Merry Christmas to you all.  Enjoy the wonderful birthday of our Lord and Savior.  

Breakfast and supper options

Lunch, served with kombucha for all:
Monday: Chicken Soup
Tuesday:Liver and Rice Casserole
Wednesday: Beef Stew
Thursday: Chicken and Onion Tacos on Corn Tortillas with white sauce
Friday: Christmas Brunch at my in-laws and then off to Lancaster.  Woo hoo!!  
Saturday: Vacation
Sunday: Vacation

Monday, December 14, 2009

Meal Plan Monday

We are a bit financially strapped this month, so I am trying to use up what I have and buy as little as possible, while still nourishing our bodies and enjoying our Christmas.  I am looking forward to the challenge. :)
So we will be eating a lot of homemade sourdough bread and soups this week, as I still have at least 25 lbs of wheat berries in my freezer and a few whole chickens to use up, along with the broth from their bones.  I also have a lot of frozen veggies to add to the soups and fried rice. 

Breakfast and supper options

Lunch, served with kombucha for all:
Monday: Tuna Melts
Tuesday:Fried Rice with Bacon
Wednesday:Roast Chicken
Thursday:Egg Drop Soup
Friday: Fish Cake 
Saturday: Chicken Soup and Toast
Sunday: Tacos

Friday, December 11, 2009

Favorite Links Friday

1.  This is a great post on 'Nourishing Baby Steps-Eat your Saturated Fats'.  

2. These are some good thoughts on how to train children to eat properly. Something we have been working pretty hard on for over a year now.  We are definitely seeing progress, but it's been slow and rather painful.  :)

3.  This fudge looks yummy and nourishing!  Perfect for the holidays. 

4.  This is a great carnival for the holidays.  It's Keeper of the Home's Healthy Holiday Eats and Sweets Carnival. 

5.  I wish I could print this list of vitamins and what foods they are found in.  It's great!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

My Anchor Holds

I had mentioned here about a conversation I had with a friend.  It's funny how much I learn and come to understand myself through conversations with people.  And the understanding almost always come after the fact, when I've had time to chew on the conversation.

This particular conversation was much like that, except that in the middle of it, I came to see and appreciate something I had taken for granted for years, without ever really appreciating.  And that 'thing' is a belief - a real, true gut-level, proved by science, history and my own personal experience - in a real, true, big, all-powerful, infinite, all-knowing, all-perfect 'being'.

Life, as we know it, has lots of ups and downs.  There is a lot that is taken for granted and even more that is hoped, guessed and wished for.  But I think, if we are all honest with ourselves, one thing everyone in the world longs for, is security.  A hope and an assurance that everything is going to be ok in the end.  Religions have been developed around this want/need.  Mighty nations have battled over this need.  It has driven the world since the beginning of history. 

And I personally find myself desperately longing for that sometimes elusive sense of security and purpose.  To know, that when the final book is closed, when my own life is ended, there really is something more to it all then just me getting by from one day to the next.  That when my great grandchildren are struggling with their dependence on drugs for every day living, that there really is a higher 'power' that is orchestrating everything to some sort of finale. 

And I have that.  I have a 'hope', not just a wishful thinking hope.  But a hope that is an anticipation of things to come.  I KNOW what is coming.  I know what I am on this earth for.  I know my purpose in life.  I know my children's purpose in life.  I know that in the end, it will all work out how it's supposed to.  And the best part is-I'm not in charge! 

I am a control freak, it's true.  But when I step back and look at life and all the responsibilities and nuances and probabilities and impossibilities, I don't want to be in control. It's simply too much.  I can't possible turn it all out for good.  But thankfully, I don't have to!

You see, I know something. I know something big!  I know-are you ready for this- I know the Creator of this whole world!  I know the very being big enough, strong enough, intelligent enough, to speak into existence the earth and all it's intricacies.  The solar system and all of it's amazing properties.  The galaxies that extended billions of lights years in all directions.  (Genesis 1:9)

Zoooooom in and see the wonders of the earth's climates, it's proximity to the sun and moon.  The very qualities of the earth that allow a living, breathing human being to live on it and thrive and carry on life from one generation to the next.  To think and learn and study.  To have needs and figure out how to have those needs meet.

And not only do I know him, but I am loved by him (Psalm 119).  The very creator of everything you see around you, loves YOU!  Think of going to a really popular Broadway play, and then meeting the producer.  Imagine him seeking you out, asking what you thought of the show.  You'd feel pretty important, right?  Now magnify that times a billion, and imagine the being capable of creating the intricate body, and the beautiful majestic waterfall, and the black holes in space, coming to you and saying 'I created all of this for you to enjoy'.  It's breathtaking!  Simply amazing!  But He did.  He created all of this for us, so we can see and testify that He really is God.  We have no excuse the bible says.  We either choose to believe Him, or we don't.  But He has displayed his awesome wonders for everyone to see. 

And, take a deep breath, He knows all of the craziness that is going on around us. He knows the sadness from death and disease. He knows that what we are putting into and on our bodies is slowly killing us.  He did not create it that way.  When Eve sinned, the rest of the world followed suit and has been in a slow decline ever since.  The world is waxing away and will do so until Jesus returns to create a new heaven and a new earth (Revelations 21).  But this is not the end. We have a hope, an assurance, that someday life will be as it was meant to be.  That the deep longing in our heart will be fulfilled.  If we have chosen to believe that the God of the Bible is real and in charge, and that we are sinners that were created for much more.  And the only way to experience what we were created for is to acknowledge our sin and it's necessary separation from a Holy God who can not tolerate sin.  And in God's ultimate plan for those he loves, the acceptance of Jesus' blood as a covering for our sin, making us ultimately sinless before almighty God.  And on earth, being able to enjoy a partial fulfillment of our true destiny, and looking forward to the full fulfillment of that destiny in Heaven. 

I base everything I know, believe and think to be true on that.  My history starts with Genesis 1:1-In the Beginning God created the Heavens and the Earth.  And when He created that, he knew what he was doing, and he knew what life would be like 6 thousand years later. 

God designed our human bodies.  He knows what it needs to operate properly.  There is truth, and there is a Creator who cares about his creation.  I may never fully know or understand that truth. But I can continue to search and try to understand it as best as I can, while praying to the Creator and trusting him to guide me in that search.  What a comforting thought! 

My Anchor Holds Through the Storms of Life

Yes, But, We Live Longer Today Then In the Past

I had a conversation with a dear lady the other day.  We do not see eye to eye on nutrition-surprise surprise! :)  I see eye to eye with, well, nobody, that I know in 'real life' on the subject of nutrition. Seriously, couldn't I have one, real life friend to share sourdough frustrations with?

Anyway, it was a very 'typical' flow of conversation.  I was sharing what I had learned in regards to nutrition and health over the last 2 years and got the usual 'you're nuts!' look.  The typical 'Yes, but we live longer today then they used to' was spoken in rebuttal to all my crazy 'old fashioned' ideas of what truly is good for a body.  My argument to that is 'But most people over 60 today are on some kind of medication and I personally do not consider that really living.  If you need medicine to be alive, or have any decent quality of life, then it's not living in my book.'.  She happened to just have turned 60 a few days earlier and used herself as an example as to how that is not true. Except... she's on estrogen.  And earlier in the conversation, she had brought up the value of taking an antihistamine when you are congested with allergies, as she does often.  But those ARE drugs.  And what would life be without them?

And that got me to thinking, if those are considered drugs in my humble opinion, then how young really, does the use of drugs for quality of life start in America today?  Goodness, I know little, itty bitty people, not months old, who are on all kinds of that type of drug.  How many kids are given tylenol to help with teething or growth spurts or to bring down fevers?  How many children are on drugs for their allergies?   How many people in America-any age-could live without CVS? 

It was breath taking to me to think of it that way.  Yes, the baby boomers are taking on tons of medication to extend their 'life', if you can call it that.  But they're older, and that seems to be what happens in America when you grow old.  But at least we can make it until we're 60.  Or can we?  I'm guessing the vast majority of those grandparents were not on drugs of any kind when they were young.  But that is not true of their grandchildren.  My goodness, the quality of life today can not even be kept for a young child without drugs!

I've heard many people say that the reason the life span has gone up in the world today is due to the fact that fewer babies die at birth. There are so many life-saving machines and drugs, that the death rate of infants is the lowest it's ever been.  Of course, the percentage of kids with disorders has skyrocketed also.  I think it's safe to say that many of them would not have made it without serious technological help.  I have 2 nieces and a nephew for whom that is true and I love them dearly.  I am not trying to be insensitive to anyone.  It's simply a fact that must be considered.

Are people really living longer, better quality lives today, or is that wishful thinking?

And what will the quality of life be like in 2 generations from now?  What will my great grandchildren's lives be like?  Will they consider drugs from conception on to be a normal part of life?  Will everyday activities like eating, sleeping, talking and walking be only carried on with synthetic helps?  How long can that continue?  

And THAT leads me to another point I have been pondering lately...  A real, true, big, all-powerful, infinite, all-knowing, all-perfect 'being'....

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Dangers of Mercury Fillings

I had mentioned in my root canal post about a man named Hal Huggins, whose books I wanted to get a hold of and read.  Lucky for me, I found both at my local library. 

I read his two books-It's All in Your Head, and 'Uninformed Consent, the Hidden Dangers of Dental Care.  While I was picking them up, I saw the book The Complete Guide to Mercury Toxicity from Dental Fillings by Joyal Taylor next to it.  I had to pick it up also.  So, the following is what I have learned from those 3 books, as well as anything I've picked up along the way. 

The natural consequence of not taking care of your teeth is that the enamel wears away and exposes the insides of the tooth-the dentin, pulp, nerves, gums and bones eventually get infected.  None of the above books went into much detail as to how to take care of your teeth before that happened. Although all 3 were adamant that it had to do with proper diet more then dental care (sugar and white flour, and processed foods were considered to be the worst offender in all 3 books).  I want to read 'Cure Tooth Decay' to learn more in regards to actual tooth care.

But.... if you have not taken care of your teeth properly, and you have cavities, the natural thing to do is to go to a dentist and have the decayed part of the tooth scraped out and a filling placed in to protect the rest of the tooth from further decay.

The main problem comes in the form of toxic materials used in those fillings.  The most popular filling is called 'silver filling' and is approx. 50% mercury, 30% copper, 14% tin, 14% silver and 1% zinc.  It is the cheapest and easiest to mold into the shape of each specific tooth.  While many people can not tolerate the other metals, the main culprit discussed in the 3 books is mercury. 

Now, everyone knows that mercury is a very dangerous metal when ingested.  OSHA has some pretty specific rules in regards to how much exposure is 'safe'.  The American Dental Association (ADA) declares it safe, because when it mixes with the other metals, it's is supposed to become stable and not leach into the mouth.  However, many studies have been done that prove that that is simply not true.

Believe it or not, this debate has been going on for almost 200 years in what has been dubbed the 'Three Amalgam Wars'.  For more info, check out this great article on the subject.  The subject of mercury filling safety has been in question since the first recorded use in 1820!  Yet we continue to use the stuff today.

The list of symptoms that are related to mercury toxicity is quite large, here is just a few: anxiety, depression, brain fog, emotional instability (that is our biggest problem here), sleep disturbances, , nightmares, unexplained suicidal thoughts, 'nerves', anemia, heart attack, high/low blood pressure, irregular heartbeat, headaches, convulsions, vision problems, epilepsy, insomnia, paralysis, Multiple Sclerosis, numbness in arms and legs, speech disorders, colitis, constipation, diarrhea, digestive problems, diverticulitis, heart burn, cramps, ulcers, arthritis, chronic low body temperature, diabetes, frequent urination, kidney stones, osteoporosis, Thyroid Dysfunction, chronic fatigue (another problem here),  hypoglycemia, allergies, asthma, cancer, candida albicans, Epstein-Barr Virus, Immune diseases, Leukemia, persistent cough, bleeding gums, loosening of tooth, mouth ulcers, gum disease, acne, skin rashes.

Sobering, isn't it?
Huggins (HH) shared the ADA's recommendations for dealing with scrap mercury leftover from fillings in one of his books.  It is posted here as well-it's definitely worth reading!  It's amusing, even if extremely pathetic.  I'll share just a part of it here:

Yes, it really does make me wonder.  Dentistry is a high-risk profession. I had no idea! 

Uninformed Consent is co-written by a surgeon 'Thomas Levy'.  In the introduction, he shares his own story of coming to realize how dangerous the mercury and other toxic metals are to a person's health.  He had heard the 'rumors' but dismissed it until he was hit with dangerously high blood pressure and his 'perfect health' was shattered.  He decided to have a Total Dental Makeover (TDM) by HH and he was amazed at how much healthier he became afterward. He considered himself  normal and healthy before having the dental issues taken care of, but realized afterward that he had been only  half-living.  He was so full of energy and life, his thoughts were cleared. He read books and articles he never could have gotten through before, and he even obtained a law degree with ease afterward. It was a very telling story to read, esp from a 'medical professional'.  

There were numerous stories of people going through TDM and healing from many, many health issues.  Too numerous to mention here.  But amazing to read!  

One thing I really liked is that they agreed that taking care of your dental issues without changing your diet is useless.  Both are necessary for healing and long-term health.  They are not offering a quick fix or a simple solution.  

Both delved into the chemistry that happens at the cellular level when mercury is ingested.  It's scary to see the many ways that mercury can mess up the various workings of the body, at the deepest level.  And it definitely lends credence to the issues that they claim the mercury can cause.  

Proper care before, during and after removal of amalgam fillings is necessary.  Both for the patient and the dentist.  Some people have actually declined in health due to taking them out improperly. Proper care includes taking care to minimize the ingestion of mercury vapors that are released during their removal, intravenous vitamin C during the removal, acupressure, blood tests for compatibility of new fillings,  proper diet immediately before and after and proper ventilation and tools.  It is not something to be taken lightly by any means.  They strongly suggest you interview a number of dentists to be sure they are qualified to take them out.  

HH says the TDR refers to the complete removal of all identifiable dental toxictiy, including the following:

1.  Replacement of mercury amalgams with biocompatible composite fillings.
2.  Replacement of crowns with more biocompatible materials. 
3.  Extraction of root canal treated teeth with removal of all surrounding infected ligament and bone.
4.  Similarly complete removal of dental implants.
5. Complete cleaning of all cavitations.

This is rather long, and only outlines some basics of what I have read and learned about the removal of toxins in the mouth. 

If you have amalgam filings, root canals or crowns, I would highly suggested reading any of the 3 books I listed to educate yourself on the best way to deal with them.  

Finding a qualified dentist is the first step to taking care of any dental toxicity.  I went on to the Price Pottenger Foundation's website and looked up their Professional Members here.  I found a dentist in NYC that just might qualify. Of course, money is the next major issue, so that will have to be dealt with when the time comes.  But they do offer a free consultation, so I am hoping to get us to the point where we are ready for that in January or February.  One step at a time.  

I hope someone finds this helpful in their search for true health

Monday, December 7, 2009

Meal Plan Monday

Breakfast and supper options

Lunch, served with kombucha for all:
Monday: Nacho Spuds
Tuesday: Broiled Fish and Fries
Wednesday: Spaghetti and Meatballs
Thursday: Ham and Cheese Sandwiches
Friday: Canned Salmon over rice with white sauce
Saturday:  Chicken Soup
Sunday: Fried Ham and Potatoes

Friday, December 4, 2009

Favorite Links Friday

I didn't get a chance to post last Friday, so this one has quite a few links that I have enjoyed.

1.  (Bummer! This did not post for some reason and I have no idea where to find it again.)  This is an article written by a doctor on the affects, or rather, lack of affects of high cholesterol/high fat diets on heart disease.  It's a must read for people who believe that things like red meat, saturated fats and eggs cause heart disease, obesity, etc.  More and more, refined carbs are being incriminated in place of the previously mentioned 'high cholesterol' food products.  It's too bad we're so unhealthy and addicted to those simple carb when this is finally coming to light. 

2.  Cheeseslave shared her all-purpose cleaner recipes.  It's pretty much what I use also-vinegar and water.  I have not yet used essential oils, but I like the idea.

3.  This was a good article on what to do when you want to make changes in your family's diet, but your husband is not on boar with those changes.  I pretty much did the same thing and Drew has slowly came on board with me. It was more work, but worth it! 

4.  This is a great review on Eat Fat, Lose Fat by Mary Enig and Sally Fallon.  Great book! 

5.  A simple tutorial for how to make your own vanilla extract. I've meant to do this for a year now and have not invested in the vanilla beans.  I even bought a perfect sized little glass jar and have vodka in it.  I just need to buy the beans! :) 

6.  I LOVE this eco-friendly shopping bag set.

7. This is a great list of  places to get Christmas gifts that support great causes.   

8.  Alternatives for coffee, and some great reasons why it's better to not consume it regularly. 

9.  This is a great new blog I found and some great coconut body product recipes (toothpaste, eye make-up remover, body scrub and deodorant). 

10.  This is a  tutorial (part 2) on sauerkraut and a neat way to keep the stuff submerged in the liquid brine.  I want one!   She sells them on etsy

11.  Make ahead meatballs. We love meatballs, so the idea of having them in the freezer for easy meals is wonderful! 


Monday, November 30, 2009

Meal Plan Monday

Breakfast and supper options

Lunch, served with kombucha for all:
Monday: Liver, onions, mushrooms, bacon and white sauce
Tuesday: Broiled White Fish, Sauce and Fried Cabbage
Wednesday: Chicken Soup and Easy Bread
Thursday:  Nacho Spuds
Friday: Fish Cakes
Saturday:  Clam Soup
Sunday: Roast Chicken

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Root Canal Cover-Up by George E. Meinig

I finished this book a few weeks ago and keep meaning to do a 'review'.  I find it really helps me to think through what I've learned in a book, if I 'talk it out'.

It's a fascinating book!  It was first published in 1993.  I read the 4th edition, written in 1997.  Not sure why they had 4 editions in 4 years.

It was written by a dentist and endondist (root canal specialist), George Meinig, and written for the purpose of exposing root canals problems to both patients and dentists.  While it did get technical at times, it was overall, a very easy book to follow and very enlightening.

Hid 'credentials' and history were impressive.  Meinig taught dentists how to perform root canals for 20+ years.  He was one of the 19 founding members of the 'American Association of Endodontists', and performed thousands of root canals himself.  He also worked for 20 years as a director of the Price Pottenger Nutrition Foundation.  He did believe in overall nutritional health for caring for one's teeth.  But he also believed that saving dead teeth was important, and so root canals were the best option if proper nutrition had not been able to save a tooth.

That all changed when he somewhat inadvertently got a hold of, and eventually read, a copy of Dr. Weston Price's books 'Dental Infection, Oral and Systemic' and 'Dental Infections and the Degenerative Diseases'.  A total of 1174 pages, weighing 9 pounds!  No wonder it took him awhile to actually get to reading it. :)  It came to his attention because of another Dentist named Hal Huggins, whose books I really want to read also (One on mercury fillings and how it causes degenerative diseases, and a second one on overall dental care and how it affects your health).  He looks like an amazing dentist, check out his website.      

After Meinig read Price's work, he felt compelled to 'buck the system' and get the truth into the public's hands.  'The purpose of writing a book about this subject, was to alert people everywhere about the extensive and meticulous 25 years research program of Dr. Weston A. Price, and how the discoveries he made rank right up there with the greatest medical discoveries of all time. "

Dr. Price's own son had died of an infected root canal (not mentioned in this book. I read it on the WAPF site).  Which caused him to do a lot more research on root canals, as they were becoming routine when he was practicing dentistry.  He found that many patients who had degenerative diseases, when a non-infected root-canaled tooth was removed, healed completely of their degenerative diseases.

One woman, whose pictures are in this book, had severe arthritis.  She had developed it over the 6 years before coming to see Dr. Price and was confined to a wheelchair.  When he removed a seemingly uninfected tooth that had a root canal under it, she was healed even to the point of being able to do needlework and walk with no assistance.  Dr. Price, being the genius that he was, decided to implant the infected tooth under the skin of a rabbit.  Within 2 days, the rabbit developed the same symptoms as the woman, and died 8 days later.  He continued doing other such experiments for the next 25 years. 

Now all dentists know that infected teeth, gums, canals, etc, can cause major physical damage, including degenerative diseases.  But they assumed (and still do) that once the canal was filled, the tooth could no longer cause any of those issues.  They assumed that any bacteria in the tooth would be killed, due to a lack of blood and oxygen.

However, Mr. Price assumed, and eventually proved, that that was not the case.  What he found (and has since been proven with stronger microscopes then were available in his time) was that the tooth has 3 miles of tubules (each tooth!) that have various bacteria living in them.  Rather then dying after a root canal, the bacteria (mostly streptococcus-fecalis) mutate from being aerobic (needing air) to anaerobic bacteria. And they also create a toxic substance that can go through the tubules, dentin and enamel and into the bloodstream.  They (the bacteria and the toxins) then go through the bloodstream and they usually pick a 'host' to which they attach and cause it to degenerate over time.  If the person has a strong immune system, it can fight them, but as soon as stress or some sort of immune problem arises, the bacteria become stronger and cause severe degeneration. 

This is VERY simple of course.  But that is about the level I can understand it. :)  If you want to learn more, I would highly suggest reading the book. 

Weston Price used over 500 rabbits a year for 25 years and continually proved the same thing.  Not every instance of degenerative disease was healed by taking out seemingly innocuous root canals, but many did. And like Meinig said, it's cheaper and easier to start there, when looking for healing from a disease.  People are willing to have invasive sugeries of all types, but why not start with the root canals and diet? 

Meinig still thinks that keeping a tooth is important (for mastication and jaw structure), but new research needs to be done to see about actually sterilizing root canals and their tubules. 

I do not have any root canals, but my husband has two.  And I hope to be able to have the teeth removed (most of them have broken off already) and the filling from the roots removed as well. I still need to research and decide on specific tooth care for me and my family.  I want to buy some tooth powder that I've heard a lot about.  I also want to get us rinsing daily with salt water and Drew and I to oil pull daily.  Right now I use my own tooth paste powder, but I'm not sure it's great (not bad, just not real helpful either).  And the kids don't do anything at all.

I still need to read up on dental health. But this was a great place to start!

This is a part of Real Food Wednesday and Fight Back Friday.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Meal Plan Monday

Breakfast and supper options

Lunch, served with kombucha for all:
Monday: Pot Roast with veggies
Tuesday: Broiled White Fish, Sauce and Fried Cabbage
Wednesday: Roast Chicken

Thursday: Thanksgiving-TBD
Friday: Leftovers
Saturday:  Chicken Soup
Sunday:  Hot Dogs and Pasta

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Favorite Links Friday

Oops, I forgot to finish and post this.  Here are my favorites from the week. There were a lot of great ones this week! 

1.  The Weston Price Foundation has their 10th annual Convention last weekend.  They are in Eastern PA next year, less then 2 hours from here. Oh how I'd love to go!  Here are some blogger highlights that I enjoyed reading:  It was kind of like being there. :)   One, two, three, four, five, six. 

2.  I really enjoy reading the 'Unlocking Femininity' blog.  Here are some great posts from this week.  This one is on a wife's role in marriage. This was also on marriage, by a woman who has been married for a long time and understands the role in God's eternal perspective.  And this one is on pride-oh so guilty there! 

3.  There were also some great 'Carnivals' that are worth perusing.   Nourishing Crockpot Carnival. Handmade Gift Carnival, Gallery of Thanksgiving Sides,

4.  My family was 'showcased' on a blog. :)  My SIL took us out to eat at Panera where a friend showed my husband how to start crocheting.  It's something he's wanted to do for awhile, and now he wants to learn it so he can teach Myia. It was fun!   

5.  The comments in this post were great-on what veggies are worth eating, and esp in season.  Kelly the Kitchen Kop generates some great comments on her posts!  It's something I'm working through myself.

6.  This is rather technical (Carrie is studying to become a nutritionist) post on the details of digestion. But it's a really, really great read! 

7.  Here are a few 'natural cures' that I want to try.  Homemade cough syrup, amazing things to do with garlic,  some general ideas for healing naturally.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Tuesday Twister in My Kitchen

It's been a busy few days.  Actually, it's been rather boring, so I've entertained myself in my kitchen.  I was checking up on all my projects and realized it was a perfect time to post on GNOWFGLINS Tuesday Twister.

So, here is my crazy kitchen (notice the goofy animal shots-the kids and I had fun with it):

Making my own Garlic Powder:
I was out of powdered garlic, and it's $4 for a tiny jar at WFM.  So I decided to try making my own using this tutorial.  I ground it in my coffee bean grinder, so it's REALLY fine.  And I left the little green middle piece in, so there is green and white in it.  But it looks and smells fabulous, so I'll see how it works next.  One entire bulb made approx. 1 Tbls of garlic powder.  So it seems to be about half the price of the stuff from WFM.
Not necessarily worth it unless you use garlic powder a lot.   I'm going to try onion powder next.  Those are 2 things we use a lot. 

Thankful Lists:

Everyone should write one of these now and then.  My daughter thought it would be fun to compile a list of things we are thankful for.  We agreed we could have gone on for a long time. We're very blessed.  My sons was a bit shorter, but I had to draw pictures for him, so it took longer. :)  I enlarged this picture so you could read them.

Homemade Tooth Powder:

I just dried and ground some of my wintergreen and mint from the garden and added it to my baking soda to brush teeth with.  The mints are supposed to be good for the enamel and encouraging good bacteria in the mouth.  It's not great, but I use it anyway. 

 Master Tonic:

I heard of this tonic from a number of sources, and decided with the flu season here, I needed to make some up.  I also have circulation issues and hope to take this daily to help that as well.  It tastes pretty nasty, but I take a Tbls every day and gargle it and then swallow it.  I try not to 'chase' it with anything, as it's potency is part of it's strength.  Luckily, I love garlic, and that is a strong taste in there.  Oh, and I did only use one pepper as opposed to equal amounts as the recipe calls for.  I figure next time I make it I'll try more, and kind of work my way into it.  :)  Drew insists he'll never, ever, ever get sick now that the stuff is in the house.  Or at least, he'll never admit to being sick.  Haa, it's working already! ;) 


Indoor Herb Garden:

Ok, so it's not really a garden per se.  Really, I just took my oregano and parsley from my square foot garden and planted them in this planter I found at a thrift store.  And I also cut a piece of wintergreen and planted that.  I have NO idea what I'm doing, but 'I have to start somewhere'. :)

Making Protein Nut Bars:

These were pretty good.  Not perfectly nourishing, but I could work with the melted chocolate on top, or get rid of it altogether.  But it did add a lot to the yumminess. I used this recipe from PassionateHomemaking.  As you can see from the picture of the kiddos-they esp loved the chocolate on top. :)

Pumpkin Pie:

I tried making pumpkin pie (1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice, 2 cups pureed pumpkin, 3 cups whole raw milk, 3 eggs,
2/3 cup maple syrup,1 tsp vanilla-and bake for 1 hour).  I used this cracker recipe for the crust and did not bake it first.  It did not turn out well.  The pumpkin part was yummy, but the crust was simply mush.  I guess I should have figured that out! :)  But the pumpkin filling was very nourishing and will get eaten for sure. 

Making Sour Cream:

This was my first time trying this.  We love Daisy sour cream and it's supposed to be on the 'good' list of WAPF. But I know ti's not nearly as good as stuff I could make with my raw cream, and it's rather expensive.  My daughter would eat it off of the spoon if I let her.  I read on a group list that if you put some daisy sour cream in cream, it will culture it and turn out just like the original.  I put 1/2 cup of daisy in with a quart of cream.  It does not taste like the original.  :(  I think I'll buy another container and mix it in with my homemade stuff and hopefully it will be acceptable to the family.  We'll have to work out way into cultured sour cream I guess. :)  But, like I always say 'You have to start somewhere'. 

Crackers and Dips:

For our suppers, I want to start coming up with dips to eat with our crackers.  Here is just plain peanut butter (which was a big hit-they made the crackers into 'sandwiches').  And strained yogurt, with some mayo and spices.  The yogurt is kind of tart for us without being sweetened, so I think it's another thing we'll have to 'work into'.  But it sure looks pretty! 

Pumpkin Cheesecake Popsicles:

Well, they sound delicious, but the kids and I don't care for them.  I mixed 1 cup of pumpkin, 1 cup of yogurt, 1/4 cup of maple syrup, 1 tsp vanilla, 3 egg yolks and a dash of salt.  Then I poured them into mini muffin trays and stuck toothpicks in them and froze them.  They taste ok, it's more the texture that is a problem.


This recipe is a favorite of ours.  It's so yummy and simple.  I dehydrated some strawberries, kiwi and apples to add to our granola as well. 

The Normal Brews:

 Kombucha, Buttermilk
and Kefir

Monday, November 16, 2009

Yummy White Sauce Recipe

My husband grew up in Ecuador-missionary kid.  His mom made a dressing while he was growing up, since it was hard to get the 'American' sauces, mayos, etc.  Now, in the city (NYC), one of his favorite 'treats' is what he calls 'Street Meat' (the very name is shady!).  It's a vendor with a moveable cart, and they cook chicken and beef, and serve it over rice, with a really yummy white sauce.  I'm sure it's full of nasty stuff.  But I wanted to come up with something similar that we could enjoy.  When I mentioned that, he brought up the white sauce he grew up with.  So I was able to get the recipe and try it. We LOVE it! 

We've had it over chicken, canned salmon, rice, as mayo on egg sandwiches, salad dressing, quesadillas and pot roast.  I love the raw garlic, and the kids love the sauce.  So I use it as a way of covering tastes they're not real keen on.  It works great! 

It's not perfectly nourishing.  I hope to try some different oils. But Safflower oil is supposed to be 'ok'.  So I use that for now.  EVVO and CO are too strong.  I also finally bought some decent Worcestshire Sauce from WFM.  I know raw egg whites aren't great for consuming, but I think that is what makes it so thick.  I'll have to try it sometime with 2 egg yolks instead of a whole egg.  

Yummy White Sauce Recipe

Place in blender:
1 egg
1/4 - 1/2 cup of white vinegar (1/4 for thick like for a veggie dip, 1/2 for thinner for salad dressing)
2 tsp. salt
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. ground mustard
1 tsp. onion powder
1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp. ground fresh garlic or 3 clove of fresh garlic 

 2 Cups safflower oil

Blend on slow speed, gradually pouring in 2 cups of oil

You may need to stop blender and scrape sides with a rubber scraper then blend somemore.

Enjoy!  It's so versatile and  yummy! 

Meal Plan Monday

Breakfast and supper options

Lunch, served with kombucha for all:
Monday: Pot Roast with veggies
Tuesday: Broiled Fish, rice and curry sauce
Wednesday: Pumpkin Coconut Soup and garlic bread

Thursday: Liver, Rice and White Sauce
Friday: Jen's Potato Stroganoff
Saturday:  Curried Egg Salad and Caramelized Onion 
Sunday:  Salmon Soup with Cornbread Skillet

Friday, November 13, 2009

Favorite Links Friday

1.  This is a great post on why counting calories is useless. Food is so simple, but yet so much more complex then I ever imagined.  But, what it comes down to is: God has it all under control, we just need to trust him and eat and live the way He intended.  Granted, that is a little more complicated then it sounds in today's world. 

2.  Food Renegade had a post on genetic engineering.  Specifically on how farmers do not follow the rules for proper growing of such plants.   It's eye opening.

3.  I really want to buy some coconut butter and make this yummy chocolate frosting.  How great to have options for nourishing, yummy treats. 

4.  My friend wrote a great post about our 'place in this world'.  I also have been guilty of wanting to do 'more' for God.  But He has made it clear recently that my place is at home, taking care of my family.  Feeding them nourishing foods, helping them to grow intellectually, spiritually and emotionally.  It takes more time then I ever expected.  But it's more rewarding then I ever expected as well. 

5.  While I'm not recooping from having a baby, I agree with this post on simplifying life, esp for the upcoming winter months.  It just seems natural!  I'd like to see us spend more time as a family, doing things like origami, reading, crocheting, puzzles, etc.   

6.  A couple of recipes that I want to try:  an apple-carrot salad, a nut bar and

7.  This is an amazing list of the wonderful healing properties of garlic. Definitely worth printing and keeping for future reference.  It's amazing stuff!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Meal Plan Monday

Breakfast and supper options

Lunch, served with kombucha for all:
Monday: Pasta and Meat Sauce
Tuesday: Roast Chicken and Roast Carrots, Garlic and Potatoes
Wednesday: Fish Fingers and Fried Cabbage
Thursday: Sloppy Joes on Sourdough buns 
Friday: Canned Salmon Melts on Sourdough
Saturday: Deviled Eggs and crackers
Sunday:  Chicken Soup with Egg Noodles

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Breakfast and Supper Ideas

Since Drew works nights, we eat lunch as a family, and breakfast and supper are the kids and myself.  I send food with Drew to work every day.  I am trying to get it to be more meat based and easier to make.  

Rather then post these same meal options every week on my Meal Plan Mondays, I figured I'd just put them in one post and link to that every week.  And I'll add directly to this post as I get more options for either meal. Simplifies my life I think. :)  I'm also trying to simplify life by doing most of my baking once a month. Ok, I'm not currently 'trying'.  It's more like I'm 'hoping' to get there.  :)  

Breakfast is a big meal for us.  I try to make sure it contains as many eggs as possible.  I serve kefir with it every day.  None of us like it, but we are getting used to it more.  The kids drink about 1/4 cup and I drink about a cup.  I still add some milk to it so it's not so thick and strong. 

Breakfast: I have all the ingredients on hand, and so can choose when we wake up, depending on our schedule and desire.
Fried/scrambled eggs with bacon 
Egg sandwiches (toasted sourdough bread, mayo, eggs, sliced pickles, fried onions, cheese)
Eggs and hash browns,
sourdough waffles (2nd waffle recipe is my favorite),
Crepes made with sprouted flour


nut butters,
strained yogurt that has been seasoned,
melted cheese spreads,
egg salad,
chicken salad,
yummy white sauce
tuna salad

Monday: Granola with raw milk
Tuesday:  Crackers, cheese, milk and dip
Wednesday: Yogurt and flavored crispy nuts
Friday:  Toasted Sourdough Bread with PB and honey or one of the dips
Saturday: Cheese Quesadillas with fermented salsa and sour cream
Sunday: Tacos with fermented black beans, sour cream and salsa

Smoothie Recipes

Smoothies are so wonderfully easy and versatile!  There really is no wrong way to make a smoothie, other then to add harmful ingredients. 

We generally eat/drink them a few times a week.  They are great for 'on-the-go' meals and 'ahh, we slept in and we're going to be late for Sunday School!!' breakfasts. 

The basic recipe:
Raw Milk (canned coconut milk is also good)

Raw egg yolks (make sure they are pastured and not factory farmed)

Natural Sweetener (generally maple syrup, honey, stevia, raisins, dates)

Flavor (fruit, frozen or fresh, cocoa powder, vanilla)

Any 'add ins' that you might want to mask, but get into the diet

Put all the ingredients in a blender, blend well and serve.  It's that easy!  

Our 3 favorites are:

1.  Strawberry Smoothie

2 Cups Milk
1 Cup yogurt or kefir
3 raw egg yolks
1 Tbls honey
1/2 Cup frozen strawberries

2.  Chocolate Milk Smoothie

2 Cups Milk
1 Cup Yogurt or kefir 
3 raw egg yolks
1 Tbls honey
2 Tbls cocoa powder
1 Tbls coconut oil (optional)
Banana (optional)

3. Vanilla Milkshake Smoothie

2 Cups Milk
1 Cup Yogurt or kefir
3 raw egg yolks
2 Tbls Maple Syrup
2 tsp vanilla

Of course, there are many varieties and other additions.  I find it easy to keep things on hand for the above smoothies at all times.  You can get creative and have a lot of fun with this.  And you can even add small amounts of new tastes to already loved flavors, to ease the transition for kids (and adults). 

I Don't Want to Get Old!

I heard two elderly women's greetings last weekend and it was very sobering.  One of them had a bad hip and was waiting to get a replacement.  This was apparently common among their friends and simply a matter of time for each of them. The luckier ones were able to hold it off longer then others.  This particular woman was putting off the operation because she had learned that the recoup time was 5 weeks instead of the 3 she originally had thought. 

Not far from my home is a sign that boasts that it 'only does hips and knees'. It's an entire clinic devoted only to replacing hips and knees.

Is this what getting old in America has come to?  I really do think I have a positive view of growing old in general.  I have a lot of grey hairs and I have no desire to color them.  The Bible speaks highly of grey hairs.  Of course, not of the hairs themselves, but of the maturity and wisdom that comes with time and experience.

Proverbs 16:31 Gray hair is a crown of glory; it is gained in a righteous life.
Proverbs 20:29  The glory of young men is their strength, gray hair the splendor of the old.

I grew up being taught to respect and care for the elderly.   They have knowledge and wisdom from experiences that we never can have. And it is lost once they are gone.

But, caring for the elderly has become a full-time job.  It's no longer just bringing them some meals and keeping them company.  It's surgeries and medicine and round the clock care.  What has happened?  I don't want to grow old like that.  I want to work and be useful until the day I die.

I believe, maybe I hope, that nutrition is a HUGE part of that.  Our bodies are not fueled properly and start to break down early in life.  The average life span may be longer (although that is questionable) then it was 100 years ago, but the quality of life has gone way down.  Living on medication and pain killers is not living!  I don't want it.  Let me die young and strong rather then old, weak and useless. 

I want to 'want to' grow old. I want the wisdom that comes from knowing and loving God for a long time.  From reading Scripture daily for years and understanding things that can only be understood by someone who has experienced life.  I want to be the old woman who loves the little children and understands them and helps their parents to do the same.  Who sees a marriage on the rocks and can help guide the couple to the Scripture and how it deals with marriage and roles in that marriage.  I want to serve the Lord with all my heart, be a prayer warrior and a passionate old sprite for Him. But if I'm worried about the next surgery, or whether the government will continue to pay for my drugs necessary for life, or all my aches and pains and misery, I know I will be useless.  I don't want that!

I realize things happen that are out of our control.  But I find it hard to believe that growing old and needing to have half of our joints replaced is out of our control.   I do believe it's a long-term problem, without simple fixes.  But yet, I do believe there are answers.  And a lot of them lie in how we care for our body.  The choices I make today will grately affect my children's lives as they grow older, as well as my own. 

Dr. Price's studies found a definite correlation between quality/quantity of life and the foods the various tribes consumed.  Along with 'white man's food' came 'white man's diseases'.  Including growing older at a much faster rate. 

I want to finish the race well.  I want to sprint toward the end.  I wonder if that is possible...

Friday, November 6, 2009

I'm an Addict

But it's not entirely my fault.

My SIL pretending to take the kids' candy. 

In my former life (oh, say about 2 year ago), I was highly addicted to sugar.  I had to have the stuff.  I craved it, I thought about it when I woke up, and all throughout the day.  I'd plan special trips to the grocery store alone so I could pick up a quart of ice cream or a bag of chips, and then sneak them into the house and snack on them throughout the day. At my worst, I was doing that at least twice a week.  It was bad!

Luckily, I realized I need some help, and I decided it wasn't just that I was lazy and had a terrible lack of self-control (although those are certainly things I struggle with).  My body needed something it wasn't getting.  Shortly after that, I found WAPF and Nourishing Traditions.  I was so excited when I read it.  It made sense!

It took me at least a year to get to where I wasn't thinking about sugary junk food all the time.  And lately, I've been able to turn down little pieces of candy here or there without any difficulty.

Until, halloween hit.  The time of year when candy is EVERYWHERE.  I have found I can only say no so many times and then I start giving in. So it's best if I control my surroundings as much as possible.  Well, I was being hit left and right by candy, and I started taking a little here or there.  And today, I realized I was back in the clutches of 'sugar'.  It has me wrapped tightly around it's little sticky white fingers.  I went for a walk yesterday and I had every intention of stopping at CVS to get a thing of candy.  Luckily I started talking to my sister on the phone and forgot about it.  Today, I made caramel corn, to try and satiate me, and then I went to church for Kids Klubs and found a bunch there.  And I ate it, and I feel yucky, and will feel yuckier tomorrow. But I'll still wake up thinking of candy and sugar and I'll crave it all day long.

We've been out of milk for a few days. That is one thing that seemed to curb my cravings some when I first started eating NT.  Hopefully after we pick some up tomorrow afternoon, and I start drinking it again, the cravings will subside.  And I'm really curious to see if the cravings will go away sooner then they have in the past.  We are eating so well, my body truly is well nourished these days.  But the way the body metabolizes sugar makes it as addicting as alcohol and drugs, and I am addicted! 

I used to read about alcoholics and druggies and shake my head and wag my finger.  They just needed to say 'no' to the stuff!  Now I am humbled.  I have been (and am yet again) that addict, and it feels awful!  I know this time though, that I will get over it.  That there really is long-term hope.  That the cravings and desperation will subside after I've gone without for a few days.  But I also know that every time I eat sugary junk, those fingers are ready to twist me around again.

Favorite Links Friday

There were some great reads again this week.

1.  Here is an article in the Washington Post about farmers producing their own electricity.  That is what I want someday.  My own energy-producing farm. I tell people I would love to live off-grid and they think Amish style living.  But I do still want electricity.  Just not from large money-hungry corporations that use copious amounts of quickly dwinding fossil fuels, or cancer causing nuclear energy. 

2. This article is a must read.  Here are some rather long quotes (I wanted to quote the whole article-it's not too long, but so good!):
Kill the microbe or improve the immune system? What is the best way to prevent illness?
Germ Theory was put forward most famously by French chemist and microbiologist Louis Pasteur, and states that certain sicknesses are caused by the invasion of micro-organisms that cannot be seen without a microscope. As such, treatment or prevention involves figuring out which microbe (bacteria, virus, fungus, parasite) has invaded the body and then killing it to prevent or stop the disease. This is the theory upon which western medicine is based. You get sick, you go to the doctor and get an antibiotic/antiviral/antifungal to get better. Much of our food, like milk, juices, canned food and even nuts like almonds are pasteurized in order to eliminate the bacteria to avoid sickness. Many people use anti-bacterial soaps and hand sanitizers in order to prevent the spread of infection. These actions are all about killing the germ, and are in support of Germ Theory.
Claude Bernard, a contemporary of Pasteur, is known for his idea called "Mileu Interior" or "Internal Environment", and is credited with the concept of "homeostasis". In other words, to be healthy, the body wants to maintain a constant internal environment, and will do what it can to correct any deviations back to physiological norms. So for example, if blood sugar is too high, the body will lower it. If blood sugar is too low, the body will raise it.
Then Antoine Bechamp, another French scientist, furthered Bernard's homeostasis theory by suggesting that if the body is not able to maintain physiological norms or "homeostasis", the body will be more susceptible to illness. Continuing the blood-sugar example, if too much starch and sugar is consumed on a regular basis, some individuals develop insulin insensitivity, and eventually type 2 diabetes. The body can no longer cope with the constant influx of sugar, and the metabolic system is thrown off. Or, if the body is deficient in a particular nutrient, certain metabolic pathways may be compromised. The body is no longer in homeostasis, so the internal environment or "biological terrain" now makes that individual is more susceptible to getting sick from an invasion of a virus or bacteria. 

3.  I love this ides for gifts for teachers, etc. We don't make gifts a central part of Christmas here, but I do like to have some homemade gifts for those who are a blessing to us throughout the year. We have done caramel corn in the past.  I also like the idea of nuts or salsa.

4.  I had to add one more.  This is a best, good, avoid list from a WAPF Chapter in Canada.  It sums up a nourishing diet very well.