Wednesday, August 14, 2013

Back to School With My Book Buffet

Ever been to that all you can eat place,...and ate more than you should have. While you feel you got your moneys worth and satisfied your every craving was it worth walking out with your shirt un-tucked over your un-buttoned pants. Or better yet wearing your stretchy yoga suit for all the wrong reasons.
  I feel this way about our collection of school materials. I have collected hundreds of pdf's on a little black box. Lap books, unit studies, copy work ect; I have purchased bits and pieces of this and that and years worth of other stuff like apologia and sonlight science. I have enough to get them through middle school and we are still in primary. In my quest to find the right history program, (hands on sequential that can be cycled back through a few times) I have found myself collecting pieces for hands on research and have become so overwhelmed in a descion for just one. Same thing with geography several great programs a lot are similar and some are even used as companions.
   This may have been stemmed from a long period of starvation. We did the box curriculum Abeka, calvert and even dipped our toes in k12. We were suffocating under the scheduling and structure and feeling as though all the things I wanted to escape from on a brick and mortar school I had only invited in my once magical abode.
    Now here I am busting at the seams with books and ideas, projects and places so many things to see and do. Trying to figure how to combine all my favorites in an order that can be cycled through so that each of my children can be working under the same theme, but getting what they need as they are all about 4 years apart. Reminding myself that I can visit the buffet on another day an trying to choose that healthy satisfying plate to serve my family today,..and keep note of what to try next go round.
   What a task organizing materials on the book self,(of which I just bought four floor to ceiling units) my magical black box of pdf's,lists of websites, and don't forget those pinterest boards! I think I may have spent the last 18 months going through teachers resource's curriculum catalogs and online providers. Shopping things out on ebay and rainbow resource center. Mom blogs, contest and numerous facebook chats.I have found some real treasures.
  I would love to hear more about how you choose. Do you cycle through the same themes with varied ages? How far out do you plan and how often does that change?
    Ready to get back in a planned routine as we have been on an un schooling path for about a year, allowing the children to choose studies and me secretly persuading ideas by planting books and materials. I have done my best to keep the wheels spinning while I took the time to look at many options and evaluate the best paths for my sons and adjust to baby 3! I must admit that left to their own they do tend to go stray. The kids do best with a captain at the wheel I have had to slowly reassert myself as such.  ...20 days in counting to our official start date!

Monday, August 12, 2013

Salt Springs or bust!

So here I go...planning a camping trip with three boys. We used to go at least once a year. Last year due issues with my pregnancy I decided to stay close to home. So its been two years...time to dust off the tent,make my list and let the stress fest begin. For something that is supposed to be so relaxing and enjoyable it is a lot of work to keep it simple. Used to be a tent a bathing suit and fill the cooler on the way out.
   With kids you gotta have entertainment (the first day with out a screen they usually don't know how to breathe) pillows stuffed buddies, bath kit, first aid, LOTS of extra clothes. We always camp by water so wetsuits,..mask snorkels floating things, wagon to haul stuff water proof camera (film ,..batteries) to catch all the great moments. Towels,..Towels and did I say Towels. After swimming gotta eat, oldest is picky so I see lots of pb&j on the menu. Dad loves to grill but who has time I need help chasing kids! So I am opting for hotdogs and nuggets on a stick. Baby is easy enough I carry his supply everywhere and he eats anything else I'll feed him. However baby has to have playpen and chair at this age they require more furniture than anyone else. Shelter, a tent and canopy lots of light, flashlights, glowsticks, tikki torches citronella,....seems simple enough but how do I fit it all in a minni van,.....get a trailer!
   On an up note I am exited to do some star gazing have a few books on constellations to share with the kids. I also have a craft planned  this makes little constellations with flashlight. I have also ordered a couple of patches for camping, on a stick, gazing and knot tying. The Knot tying will be Daddy time. ;) 
I found lots of great patches to commemorate other activities that children there age should do, whether for skill or character. No I do not like the idea of sending my kids off to scouts, may be one of my more selfish reasons in homeschooling but I want to be part of making these memories, that's why I had kids so I could be a kid all over again with them. Is it so wrong?
 What was your favorite camp song,..snack or activity. I grew up with gorp,..peanut, sunflower, m&m raisin mix, my Dad playing guitar by the fire ad falling asleep in my mothers arms,..until I had little brothers and then they fell asleep in my arms.

Food for the Cure

                 My diagnosis
 I  have had issues with inflammation, degenerative arthritis and psoriasis  ...when not minding my food. I had a horrible head neck injury and with that came a lifetime RX. I am however DRUG FREE and proud. It was a conscious effort and a promise to my then un born children. I would not be a victim. Just another  zombie with a story and prescription. I began a journey to heal and strengthen my body not just cover up symptoms. I am very blessed to have found a wonderful Dr. who is a neurologist/chiropractor/nutritionist ....holistic Guru. He has become an asset to my whole family and many friends. He is my OZ!
               My Remedy
I have come to believe that we have been given everything we need for good health right here on this earth. So often we eat , smells good, was fast , was cheap, was there,.....that's how my grandma cooked it.  Then we are left with headaches,bloating,fatigue and even inflammation.

    WATER. The Earth is about 70% water our bodies about 60%.  Our brains even more 85% water,..just think what you can get done with hydration. Sodas are the biggest offender taking 6-8 glasses EXTRA water to recover. Not to mention depleting calcium. I do enjoy a root beer float at times and have that famous recycled cup of coffee through out my day. You moms know, the one you reheat three four times trying to get through between breakfast lunch math and what ever other disasters strike between. Always start your day with one large glass of water even before the coffee. Then another between each reheat or as I do in the summer cool down ,..I throw it in the freezer or add a scoop of ice-cream on round two.     This website has a lot more than water found this when digging for geology stuff! 

    Easter gets me every year, I am a jelly bean junkie! My sweet fix on a good day is a handful of dark chocolate morsels sometimes I mix it up with some sunflower seeds or almonds. A summer favorite frozen berries. Sure you can get out the blend add a zing of lime or frozen O.J. have a sorbet. BUT I got two loads to fold and three kids to bathe before dinner! We have been taught to count calories, count sugar. Sugar is depleting to your body's natural defenses and can counter act the benefits of healthy food. Ex. A favorite of mine is a good dark berry juice and I still have a hard time finding a good one off the shelf. Too much sugar counteracts all the antioxidant properties of the berries!

      GLUTEN .....NO BREAD  WHAT!!(this is not another carb free diet promise)
 I always can tell when I need to focus on my food.
After all a busy Mom of three who has a hard time finding time to eat none less make sure its healthy. My pain starts in my ears. This problem with my ears started after a flu shot I had while pregnant with #2. I also began to have extreme reactions to anti inflammatory meds (given to me after his birth) it actually caused swelling. Only Tylenol for me know. By the time he was 6mnths I noticed a connection to gluten. I felt better than ever when I purged this stuff, even dropped the baby weight from number 1 and 2!! I could not help but long for those comfort foods,noodles toast chocolate cake and pretzels. I must admit I felt deprived at first. My health was most important so I continued on.
   Now that G Free is coming into the lite more options are available. I have sandwiches and French toast,waffles (udis new ancient grains is THE BEST) For breads I recommend RUDIS. I always toast first, take out the GLUE with the gluten and it just falls apart. Like I have time to make bread...that's funny! I do however make cookies and cakes on occasion and have been lucky that my Dad found a great outlet place that tends to get these mixes in cheaper than betty crocker. Eating Gfree can be costly when looking to replace those comfort breads and pastas. (Wal-Mart for the pasta $2.00 is a steal)Rice dishes and corn tortillas are a standard in this house,...but I have had spaghetti nachos once when I had no pasta! You will get creative and like anything new it will be come second nature and your body will thank you.  Anything wheat/barley has gluten, it is glue it gunks up the works and slows your machine down. Try it for at least two months and then tell me what it did for you. *beer is off limits, wine is far better for you* I will join you for a glass after nursing #3 has seen its time.

I have switched my beef for turkey. We do turkey burgers and ground turkey for taco night. Bacon I still use from the pig once or twice a month. I have yet to find a substitute for bacon. I do have sensitivities to some seafood. While mostly shellfish give me testing showed no problems with Iodine. Its the oysters clams and scallops that will kill me. I ate these for 20+ years no problem, now anaphylaxis. Hard times on this florida girl. Eating at restaurants is nearly impossible. How ever high protein is key to my diet so lots of beans,peanut butter and cheese. Cheese that brings me to........

 Milk is not a friend of most holistic diets. Think about it cows have a four chamber stomach. They can digest mothers milk much better than us (I type as I nurse my little guy LOL) I love a bowl of ice cream every night tend to put cheese on everything and all my big kids drink milk with ovaltine in the morning. We did soy for awhile and may go back to alternatives later but for us we have a gallon in the fridge always. Sorry Dr. Kemp.

I say the more the merrier! This is where the magic happens. We love raw baby spinach,..salads sandwiches I throw a handful of fresh under my rice on top of soups, on the cheapie freezer pizzas I give the kids. LOVE SPINACH! Strawberries are great for us gals the iodine helps balance thyroid. Pineapples (aid digestion) and banana's (magnesium and potassium) are high on my list and almost daily. Blueberries  grapes blackberries,cherries, the darker the berry....the higher the antioxidant. I did get on a juice kick with a MonaVie it opened my eyes to how many fruits I was not eating and got me digging in this medicine cabinet. I do like to make a smoothie from time to time and did have someone explain to me why juicing beats eating it. I guess you burn so much good stuff up in digestion that juicing it allows more nutrients to be absorbed at a faster rate. A good juicer is next on my wish list.
Another note is fermented food daily,..yogurt, pickles, sauerkraut or mushrooms. These help to balance digestive enzymes all this healthy eating can strip your system. AND WATER WATER WATER!!!!!  That is rule #1.