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Healing without hurting

Friends! This is amazing. I have finally finally had time to properly place my nose in the most amaze-balls book and it’s blowing my mind. So of course, I’m ready to share! I’ve been looking forward to its release for months, and then life happened and it’s been sitting on my Kindle waiting for my vision, and time, and sleep patterns to align themselves! And here we are.



If you have a child, and you know something isn’t quite “right”. If your “mommy alarm” is going off, even if there is no firm diagnosis, read this book! If your life is just harder than it seems it should be, you’re not alone.

She discusses everything from food sensitivity, antibiotic use, vaccines, genetic mutations, tests and doctors and support options. This is an amazing manual from a mom that has done it, and done it very, very well.

We have been getting deeper and deeper into genetic data and the results are mind blowing. Granted, it’s a little overwhelming to go back to chemistry and remember RNA and DNA and atoms… but, when it’s related to your child and how they feel it’s EVER SO MUCH MORE fascinating than it was in college! orrrr maybe I’m just geeking out.

Last night I handed my husband the chapter on Oppositional Defiance Disorder (yes, it’s a real thing) at 11pm. I mean, how could I NOT?  We’re 10 for 10 on the “you might have this if:” list. And there is some reassurance that it’s not just us, our parenting, our discipline. It’s not just that we SUCK as parents.  There is a real, valid, understandable reason for this behavior. It’s not an easy fix mind you, there is no pretty yellow pill that makes it all go away, but there is a roadmap. And if you stop to pay attention to it, it all kind of makes sense.

Gosh, we’ve been to so many doctors, and healers, and specialists, and … everything. And never found real answers, but now it’s all finally falling into place.  So grateful.  Just keep going, don’t let anyone discourage you.


Now I can’t wait to get all of our tests by 23andMe and our Igg Food Sensitivity test!

I leave you with a lovely quote from my dearly departed friend. xoxo

Create your sunshine life, keep going and loving, and believing.


One Step at a Time

Oh So many things. Sooo many things to share. It’s been Forever.

Today, my daughter asked me for advice. Real honest, loving advice. Not eye-rolley, or snotty, but lovely – GRANTED it was how to win at Candy Crush, but hey, beggers can’t be choosers. I’ll still remember the day forever, except in a few months I will change it in my mind to something probably a bit more poetic, today I’m honest. It was Candy Crush.


My learning with Methylation and genetics moves forward. I feel a bit at times like I’m lost in the Matrix. Deep in data with numbers and studies all around me and I forget where I am. It’s a process, but a worthy one. I can’t wait to figure it out and share with all the mommas and daddies out there searching… It’s like a fast track back to college. Chemistry and ick. But it’s a new goal when it helps your kids. So I just stick with it.

In the meanwhile, as we’ve been so diligent reducing our diet, any small infraction causes huge upset. Last week I made a roast chicken for my husbands birthday and as a “special” treat I tucked an onion inside the bird as the kids had another meal planned. We haven’t been able to cook with onion or garlic in months due to my sons sensitivity, and it felt like a special occasion. However, when we boiled said chicken for broth we forgot to remove the cursed onion. My son drank the broth last night and was sick all day today. Poor little guy.

I’m going to start researching an aggressive digestive enzyme therapy to begin to start to build tolerance to these sensitivities. We’ve had it out of our diet for over 3 months and drinking bone broth and grass fed gelatin like it’s going out of style and the sensitivity only goes stronger. The problem foods are like the “one Ring to Rule Them All” (geeky Lord of the Rings reference) where the attraction and impact only grows stronger with time.

I digress.

We are making it. Each day. I’m up more than I used to be. I’m trying to come to a calm and loving acceptance for my new way of life. It isn’t what it was before the accident, but it’s better than it has been. Perhaps I need to focus on patience for awhile.  I’m working on getting IGG blood tests for both kids to assess food sensitivities and continue to work towards understanding the mutations we have and how I can heal them nutritionally.

I haven’t lost hope. Sometimes I even still dream of Bali. You know, if I could make the flight and all of the stars aligned.


Somedays It’s not any more exciting than one foot in front of the other. And that’s enough.

Create your Sunshine Life. One small Step at a Time. With patience.


Methylation, Hope and New Doorways


You know the saying “when god closes one door…he opens another”.  I’d be happy if we could just leave one closed for awhile and take a breather. I feel like I’m in back to back marathons. I haven’t even been able to sort out top from bottom in order to post… so here goes.


My beloved gallery has sold to wonderful to new owners.  It’s been a gradual process of letting go and sending love. I spent 7 years growing, planning, loving that little art gallery it seems like it’s embedded in my DNA.  Letting go. It’s an art. Finding out your life plan isn’t unraveling in the way you thought it would is a bit of an adjustment. I say a daily prayer for it as part of my mindfulness exercises. I think it helps.

My neurosurgeon has cleared me for awhile anyway. No more surgeries, the leak is most likely sealed and I’m in high pressure rebound. That’s the good news. The bad news is that I’m still in a lot of pain and strange and mysterious symptoms, so it’s time to (open another door) find a D.O. – here I’d be happier to just CLOSE THE DOOR on the whole situation and have a miraculous healing miracle rather than starting fresh with a new specialty … yet here we are – .  Apparently the time isn’t quite right for healing, and I need more practice in surrendering to the greater plan.(surrender is not exactly my strong point).

On a positive note… Unschooling is going beautifully. It seems as though we have all settled into a more relaxed pace. We are working together, listening to each other, and finding more time for peace and laughter in our day. What a blessing. I’m grateful each day.  I think a major part of it is not having the morning school battle (with sensory issues – getting up early, putting on clothes, eating food in a hurry just causes more pain that it could ever be worth – then doing it all again at bedtime meant we spent hours each day in battles over hurrying to complete sensory activities). The kids are eager for learning time and reading books. For me, it feels like a daily victory. Complete and utter gratitude.  I feel like the Divine really has my back on this one, and I’m reassured it’s the best direction for us, at least right now.


And then we come to methylation. Attention: for those mom’s of challenged, special, high needs kiddos THIS IS FOR YOU!  We had a genetic test done from several months ago but never really finished the analysis. After some recent flare ups for both kiddos it caused me to dig into the wild and overwhelming world of methylation and detox genetic pathways.

Let me give you a little visual example of my light reading: Now DON’T Freak out. 🙂 (learn more about methylation here)

methylation pathyways

I have to read it several times to fully assimilate all of the information (strange I know) It’s a lot. it’s a whole new vocabulary. But you know what else it is? Ladies and gentlemen, this is HOPE wrapped up in a confusing little package. This is healing. This is what it looks like for the mothers that have healed their children from ADD, Autism, and host of other nasty little words. And you may have heard that these are “incurable ” conditions. But I don’t buy it. If there are mothers out there who’s non-verbal children start to speak (after only two months of protocol), and there are people that spontaneously heal from terminal cancer – then I tell you what, it CAN be done. There is an answer for all of us. It’s just how deep down the rabbit hole we are willing to dig.

As I’ve always been described as… tenacious.. I’d go to the core of the earth, digging with only my fingernails to find a healing solution.  Hmm, maybe I need to pray about that more, release and trust and let that go.

Is anyone out there here with me?  I’m reading books and studies and starting to grasp, but I’d really love to geek out about it with someone else…  We are on a modified version of the FODMAP protocol (we can’t have nightshades or dairy, in addition to the rest of the program) currently, and it has helped some, but we can’t eat ANYTHING so the kids have actually requested the GAPS diet in an effort to regain some of our diet. Do you know about the GAPS diet?? Can you imagine a child requesting nothing but chicken broth and chicken soup round the clock?

How their little tummies hurt daily. It’s enough to drive a momma completely insane. And with that, the door to the full GAPS protocol has been cracked. Do I have it in me to step through the door into the next adventure?

Breathe. Breathe. Breathe.

Create your sunshine Life, just keep stepping through those doors as they open and surrender to the Divine plan, regardless if the road doesn’t take you where you thought you were headed. Maybe the destination is worth the trip.


Incredible, Easy and Powerful Granola

I’m finally able to start cooking a bit again! Yay. I love cooking.

I haven’t made Granola in awhile. If you haven’t either, now is the time to start! It is easy, cheap, kid friendly and a great way to sneak in all of those “great” ingredients that are challenging to get in otherwise. You can create a healthy, brain building, protein packed snack. Especially for those of us with special needs or highly picky children (or spouses…), this is a win/win.

Here’s what I did, but the beautiful thing about Granola is that you can’t really ruin it. Change it up, make it your own.

Ingredients: (organic goes without saying… )
4 cups organic rolled oats (not quick oats)
1 cup (give or take) of toasted almond slivers and pecan pieces
1 cup unsweetened coconut flakes (the big ones is what we prefer)
2 TBSP Hemp Seeds
2 TBSP Chia Seeds
1 (or two) generous handful of toasted pumpkin seeds

Add at the end:
1/3 cup Dried Papaya mini pieces
1/4 cup dried bananas

1/3 cup coconut oil
1/3 cup good raw organic honey
1/3 cup REAL maple syrup
1 tsp real vanilla flavoring (or whatever you prefer)

Preheat oven to 275.

Mix all of the top Dry Ingredients in a large bowl. Put the coconut oil, honey and maple syrup in a pan and gentle heat so it mixes and is pourable. After removing from heat add the Vanilla Flavoring and stir well.

Pour your wet/sweet mix over the big bowl of oats. Keep stirring until it’s all kind of moist.

Place parchment paper on a rimmed cookie sheet (it will take two). Pour granola onto cookie sheet in a thin layer. Bake 8-10 minutes, stirring half way through. Watch it like a hawk – nothing makes you sadder than burnt granola. 😦

When it’s done, remove from oven and let it cool COMPLETELY. After it is cooled, mix in your dried fruits and store in an airtight container. Enjoy for breakfast with a little Hemp milk or as a dry snack for after school!
Best granola recipe
Now the really good stuff:

almonds – Great source of protein, Vitamin E, Calcium, Iron, Zinc, Selenium. Helps blood sugar and brain health!
pecans– Protein, Vitamin E (protects cell damage in the brain), High in Antioxidents and fiber.
Hemp Seeds – These are arguably one of the most complete sources of nutrition. Balanced protein and more omegas than Flax. This is a brain super food. Don’t skip this easy way to incorporate it into your diet. Plus they are nutty little goodness that your kids will probably never see!
Chia Seeds – are known as an energy booster AND a sleep aid. Double win. High in protein, omegas, iron, magnesium, calcium, and potassium. They have 8 times the Omegas as salmon (and easier to consume if you ask me…) read = brain health.
pumpkin seeds – Get this! Pumpkin seeds are great for prostate health and bladder function. They are also proven to assist with DEPRESSION and are a natural anti-inflammatory. They are an alkaline forming seed and are used in many cultures as treatment/prevention for parasites.
Papaya – high in Vit A, C and folate but most notably a miracle help for digestion. Got heartburn? Digestion issues? Increase papaya! It’s also an anti-inflammatory a great for skin and hair health!
bananas – Help with brain power, potassium, bowel health, energy and DEPRESSION.
coconut oil– I need a whole blog post dedicated to coconut oil. Have you seen “my big fat greek wedding”? You know how they use Windex for everything? That’s kind of how we are about coconut oil. Buy an organic, cold pressed tankard of it at Costco. Thank me later… 🙂 But if you’re not real fond of the flavor this is a great way to get it in your body without tasting it too much. Here’s the scoop it’s great for killing Viruses, Bacteria, Fungi, Candida (which is an epidemic in our world), supports the immune system and thyroid (another one that our society is in desperate need of). It boosts energy, is heart healthy, and helps with Diabetes. Fatty acids from coconut oil go straight to the liver from the digestive tract, where they are used as quick source energy or turned into so-called ketone bodies, which can have therapeutic effects on brain disorders like epilepsy and Alzheimer’s. It also helps you BURN FAT.
raw organic honey – Reduces inflammation, strengthens immune system, calms nerves, balances blood sugar, and is an energy booster.
REAL maple syrup (splurge on the real organic stuff, not the cheapo HFCS pancake syrup) – This is high in manganese and zinc which are great for prostate health among other things. High in antioxidents, calcium, minerals and B vitamins

Create your Sunshine Life by putting something really good in your body!



5 Tips for Moms at the end of their Ever-Loving Rope

We’ve all been there. Done. Fried. Pissed. Those of us that are parents of neuro challenged kids probably spend more time there than others. It’s not that we’re bad people, it’s hard to work with and communicate with someone that is on a TOTALLY different planet than you are.  And we’re human.

We had a hard week here… what it’s only Tuesday? … well hell. We started a new chiropractic protocol for the kids last week. Which I’m really, really, optimistic and excited about. I can’t wait to share with you as soon as I have concrete amazing news (which I fully expect). But in the meanwhile, all changes are hard. Every time we start something new we take two giant steps backwards. And it’s hard… on everyone. But mostly my dear, sweet, girl. 

So tonight I thought of all of the other Mommas out there, having a hard time. Putting down kids with sleep issues, ADD/ADHD, Autism, undiagnosed mystery illness, suspicions lurking in the back of their mind Mommas that are worn out and tired and sad. This is for you.

  1. When it gets hard – really, really, hard – walk away. Walk out of the room and give yourself a breath. Count to 5 and remember the person you are working with is likely as angry and frustrated and upset as you are. You probably won’t be able to talk it out because you are looking at the situation from two different worlds. Stop talking and walk away.
  2. Don’t compare your life, your parenting, or your child. Don’t compare to your friends, or their kids and whatever you do DO NOT compare it to what kind of parent or child you envisioned before you had kids. Ha! Don’t let yourself get sucked into all of the could have or would have or should have’s.
  3. When you re-enter the situation and all feels lost, take a breath and make a peace offering. Massage is magic. It’s amazing what physical touch does to disarm and change the emotion (common sense warning: use your knowledge of your own child, not every child likes to be touched…). If you are dealing with a child with special needs it is less important to discuss who won, who should have done what, etc. etc. Make peace. Massage oil and a foot rub or back rub can help them relax. It will also help you calm down and find peace.  I highly recommend high quality essential oils for relaxation. Don’t use the cheap stuff. We love doTerra oils Balance, Solace, Frankincense, and Breathe for bedtime rituals.
  4. Find gratitude. Start small. Think of all of the magical and wonderful things that you love about your child, that make them unique, your relationship, the way that it is different than what you expected. Let it build.
  5. Pour wine. Lots of wine. And remember, you are not alone. You are amazing. You are powerful. You are unstoppable.

And for those of you without special needs children – I’m sure you can put the same rules to use for your Terrible Two’s or your significant other.. 😉

Much love to you Mommas.

Create your Sunshine Life Today.

~Clover Sunshine

Do your kids know what you feed them?


How do you teach your family about food? What do you eat? Do you talk to your kids about it? Do you have health challenges in your family that could possibly, just possibly, be improved by the foods that you eat (or don’t)?

I will tell you that we don’t eat standard store-bought candy ( well the kids don’t, I’ve been known to hide Sour Patch Kids in random places and binge, not proud of it – but it happens and I’m honest!). Not sometimes for a treat, or on the weekends – not even at Easter or Christmas or Halloween (ok maybe a piece or two at Halloween, but not the crazy sugar rush that takes over America). You may think I’m cruel, or I’m crazy, or that it’s just depriving kids of their youth. But before you rush to judge, I ask you this. HAVE YOU READ THE LABELS of the candy you give your kids? Have you Googled the ingredients? Do you KNOW the neurotoxins that are standard in kids foods?

I used to think I was a little crazy and a little cruel myself. I felt guilty for the rules that I made about our diet. But the more I learn, the stronger and more confident that I get. The more confident I am, the more comfortable I am sharing my decisions with my kids. And I am proud to tell you that now we make these decisions together. My children are age 4 and 6 and we talk candidly about food coloring and high fructose corn syrup.

We do have treats. We eat raisins and dried mango, homemade granola on occasion, and plain organic yogurt with raw honey. My kids LOVE it.

When my children beg for some Lucky Charms at the store I stop and explain that it’s really not food, it’s poison. (yes, it is). We look at the ingredients, we talk about GMO corn and what that means, we talk about high fructose corn syrup and food additives and preservatives. We talk about how it makes our bodies feel when we eat chemicals and how our bodies feel when we eat good food. I think it would be cruel to just tell them NO and keep going. It wouldn’t teach them anything. I would just create kids that binge behind my back and probably create a craving for junk food for their whole lives. But by talking about our decisions they can start to understand.

And I’m not without exceptions to the rules. We have our rules. But we talk about why we have them and who can eat what. Avani can’t eat grains excessively, no sugar, NO GMO’s, no food additives, preservatives, food coloring – or she has nuero reactions. Sometimes we can get away with a slip if we’ve been “good” all week – sometimes not. She gets twitchy, angry, can’t sleep, frustrated, impacted by lights and sounds and textures of everything around her. Hugo can’t have nightshades or much dairy. He gets achy joints and terrible tummy pains and reflux. But they both KNOW IT. They know what they can and can’t have. They know why. They know what happens if they do.

So when we go to a birthday party and Avani BEGGGGS for a “real” cupcake – because let’s face it, coconut flour, sugar free Paleo cupcakes got nothing on Devils food Cake with sprinkles – we talk about it. We talk about what’s in it. What it makes her feel like and I let her choose (not always, but sometimes). I think it’s important that they learn to make these decisions themselves as we aren’t always there. Then, later, when she’s upset and crying and having a reaction – I hold her. And rock her. And soothe her. And ever so gently point out that it’s not her, it’s the cupcake. It’s the grains and the HFCS and the GMO’s destroying her senses, her gut and her mind. And she realizes it. Next time, it’s still her decision.

My son will promptly turn down pizza at a birthday party (even though it’s his FAVORITE thing) because he knows he can’t have the tomato sauce.  I never worry about him cheating, he is solid in knowing he doesn’t want to hurt.

Our FAVORITE is to go to a big box store on sample day. I send my children out to the horrible people handing out gummy “vitamins” like candy telling the kids it’s good for them and watch as my 6-year-old asks if it has high fructose corn syrup? I watch the bewildered sampler look at the box and confirm. Then I watch him squirm as she asks why, why would you give that to a child? Sick and twisted. I know.

But you know what? When they ask for a Snickers and I say NO at check out. They ask, “does this one have corn syrup?” and I say “yes”. And they opt, “disgusting, can we have some dried mango when we get home?”.  Yes, of course, that is an excellent decision.

I believe that our children are powerful. They have the ability to heal themselves. They deserve to know all that we can teach them. When they are provided a life without addictive (sugar) substances, it’s amazing the choices they have room to make. You’d be surprised how often my kids opt for carrots and cheese sticks over pizza and cookies when at a public outing. They know it makes them feel better in the long run.

~ Now my no means am I raising angels folks. I’m only talking about food choices. I’ll be happy to share my horror stories of parenting gone wrong on plenty of other occasions.

But perhaps consider talking to your kids candidly about your thoughts on food, and food choices so they can learn from you.  What if you listened to your body so trustingly? What would it say? (other than the late night binge of Sour Patch Kids and Chardonnay of course…)

Start Creating Your Sunshine Life Today (it’s easier if the whole family is on board).

Much love to you Mamas.


Clover Sunshine

Kids Mental and Gut Health – A starting point

Sometimes it’s good to start with what you know.  By popular request, I’ll be posting a series on kids health.

**please note, I post based on my personal experience and my children. I am NOT a doctor. Please, people do your own research but perhaps this will give you a starting point**

(for those getting this via email, this is actually a video – not just a ridiculous photo! But you have to click through to watch it until I increase my programming ability!)

Our health issues range from gut health (sore tummies, food sensitivities, chronic constipation) to nuerological (ADD, Autism Spectrum, OCD, Sensory Processing, rage, you get the visual…).

When I first started on this journey, I felt so alone. No doctor could tell me what was wrong. I felt blind and gagged and helpless and ignorant. So I did what any Mama Bear does, I read. And read. And read. And read some more.  So, at this point, I might be blind to what is coming but I’m anything but ignorant.  If you have questions, please don’t hesitate to contact me. Much of what I have learned is from other Mommy Bloggers who have generously shared. The least I can do is pass it on.

I’ll be posting a new video in the series each day so stay tuned…

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