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.
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.
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.
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!
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!
Well, I make no promises. And I’m not a doctor – let’s just get THAT out of the way.
NOW I can tell you how excited I am!
We had a rough couple of weeks. Special needs Mommas, you need no further description.
Edgy, twitchy, whiney, screaming, uncomfortable kiddos. You know the signs when you see them. It twists your gut into knots and you know it’s coming… The wrath… the shot nerves, less eye contact, can’t sit still …
SO BOOKMARK THIS POST!!
Granted, I had fallen off the wagon a bit. We had opened up our diet, “cheated” a bit more than normal (occasional flour tortilla and corn chips, nothing terrible but gluten and GMO’s are not on our side here). We had run out of Aloe Vera juice and I hadn’t made it a priority to get more.
So, I quickly adjusted our diet and schedule and within 3 days we had banished the demons! I’m proud to say we turned it around very quickly. So here you go:
Step 1: Make bone broth. Gut health is very closely related to brain health. Many kids with issues have underlying gut issues such as Leaky Gut Syndrome. You may notice more tummy aches, you may not. But when you take efforts to heal the gut, it improves senses, neuro health, and emotions. My kids prefer chicken broth 10 to 1 over beef bones. I guess I do too. Get an organic chicken. Put it in a pot with a splash of Apple Cider Vinegar, some organic veggies (I use celery, onions, and garlic) and fill the stock pot with water. Add a couple of teaspoons of good himilayan sea salt and let it gently boil around 6 hours. My kids CRAVE it and beg for it. Fight the need to get creative. Don’t put noodles in it. Don’t add anything. Just give them some broth to drink. Several times a day for several days or as long as you can keep it up.
Step 2: Add Aloe Vera Juice EVERY DAY. Get George’s Aloe Vera Juice. It’s high quality, no taste and only around $8 for a huge bottle. Make a morning drink (we use whatever juice they love -watered down at least 50/50 and organic of course) add an ounce or two of aloe vera juice. This is an anti-inflammatory and VERY healing. They never know it’s there.
Step 3: Seriously look into Isagenix Shakes. This is not a sales pitch. Trust me, I’m not going to get rich when you order a bucket of shake (but you do have to order online, you cannot find this product in stores. Click the banner on the right, or click HERE if you’re interested in learning more). I joined the program when I found out how great it is for kids with ADD / Autism and other special needs (as well as healthy kids, mommas and daddies too!) It is high in Glutathione, protein, and over 70 trace minerals. Within 3 days of my kids drinking a half a chocolate shake a day I notice a SUBSTANTIAL improvement in behavior, sitting still, making eye contact…it’s organic, non-gmo and all natural. No soy. Celiac Friendly. It’s what we use.
Step 4: Add a high dose of Omega 3’s. They are proven to help brain function and I can absolutely identify a day with 100% certainty when we miss a dose. We use Barleans Omega Swirl, Lemon Zest. It can be found at most health food stores in the fridge section. It’s liquid. I’m sure there are probably higher quality versions, but my kids LOVE this and think it’s a treat. 1 Tablespoon each morning and it makes all the difference. We know not to run out.
I created my Sunshine Life by adding these simple steps to our daily routine. Everyone is happier.
Start Creating your own Sunshine Life…Today!
Wowzers. I’m overwhelmed by how many mommas are reaching out looking for next steps. So here are the first 5 things that I think you should stop purchasing. Took me plenty of research to get here. Hopefully it saves someone a little time.
If you suspect (even an unvoiced fear in the back of your head) that something is wrong – take action. These steps can be taken without tipping your hand. If you have a spouse or a family that is unsupportive of your suspicions or your doctor has yet to confirm or deny, you can still take these steps now. Even if you’re wrong, it will do nothing but good.
- Trust your instinct. Don’t doubt yourself. You have intuition for a reason. Trust it. I don’t care what the final “word” of diagnosis is. If something is wrong, take steps to make it better. Don’t get attached to a diagnosis, just work on healing. Trust your gut.
- Take stock of your diet. Really take stock. Have an honest conversation with yourself about what is realistic for you to accomplish for Phase 1 of diet change. It is harder with a larger household, so be gentle with yourself. Diet changes means whatever you commit to cutting – YOU DO NOT BUY. Don’t have it in the house. You will cheat. It’s too easy after a hard day and it’s not fair to either of you. Things to put on your list to avoid (at the pace you can live with but as soon as reasonably possible)
- Gluten (gluten is an opiate in the brain. For reals.) If you are already sensitive this can cause chaos. If you can’t cut 100% try to stop buying bread. Pretend you “forgot”. Stop buying crackers and chips. If you do buy it, please, please make sure it’s organic and GMO free. GMO’s are a WHOLE nother blog post. But they are nasty.
- Dairy (see opiate). We try to stick to no more than one organic portion of dairy per day. Too much dairy makes for crazy. If you do have dairy, it should ALWAYS be organic. Think about it. We store all toxins, poisons, and chemicals in our fat cells to protect our body. What is milk but the cow’s fat reserves? So every poison and toxin that it has been exposed to ends up in your cheese. Gross. That helps reduce your portions right there. Imagine the pesticides on the grass, hormones and antibiotics injected… Voila – Dairy free.
- Packaged foods. Stop buying chips, crackers, candy, cold cereal, packaged juices and “treats”. They are filled with artificial colors, flavors, preservatives, and other nasty chemicals that freak the brain out.
- Soda. No excuse. Don’t buy it. Ever. Never. And if I hear you have Diet soda in your house I’ll drive over there right now with a big stick. No Diet Soda.
- Anything with High Fructose Corn Syrup or artificial Colors (look like a color with a number such as Red 40, Yellow 5, etc.)
So what do you eat?
- Fresh Organic fruit. We get a big bag of apples each week. The kids love it. Bananas are great too.
- Organic Carrots
- Organic almond butter (to dip carrots and apples in)
- Organic fruit juice, watered down at LEAST 50/50 with water (and only a couple of times a day).
- Fresh, raw almonds (assuming your kiddos are old enough).
- Organic brown rice – rice cooker is worth it’s weight in gold.
- Home made granola or organic granola or oatmeal
- Crock pot food! Chicken, roast, you name it. Kids love it. It’s easy. Reheats well.
Think what good habits you are teaching your family for life. Your kids will eat it. Don’t be scared. Amazing how quickly they adjust when junk food isn’t in the house.
Yes, it’s hard. Of course it is. But I recommend starting a health journal. When you start to see that things improve even slightly it will motivate you to continue on.
What are your “go to” health foods?
Much love to you.
Start Creating your Sunshine Life, Today!
p.s. – I cannot recommend highly enough the Isagenix nutritional products. My kids love them, they are proven extremely helpful for kids with ADD and Autism Spectrum and provide the complete nutrition needed for growing body and brain. You can click the link to the right or tab up above to learn more!
Some people are overwhelmed at the thought of elimination diets. There is so much to know, where do I start?
Start simple, so you don’t resent the cut from your diet. Figure out what you won’t miss that much and gradually shift your shopping habits. If you find it hard to cut something completely out of your pantry, just shift to buying it every OTHER time. Start with being mindful of labels. Pay attention to what goes into your body.
1. High Fructose Corn Syrup. This is a deal breaker. Never. Never Ever. If it has HFCS on the label put it down and keep looking. You will find it in bread, dairy, canned foods, processed meats (think hot dogs and sausages) Yes, if you look hard enough you can find people that will tell you it’s no big deal. Here’s my thought – it’s a chemical process formed product. It’s non-organic, GMO corn that has been altered. It’s not food. There is plenty of circumstantial evidence that it causes problems with weight, blood sugar, ADD and anxiety. Seriously, why would you eat that? Just cut it out. Look for organic cane sugar or at least cane sugar or honey as a sweetener.
2. Non organic grains. Now, I’m not going to tell you to go gluten free. I’m not even going to suggest you cut out bread. But it’s not about bread. It’s about paying attention to how MANY GMO GRAINS we are consuming. Start paying attention to how many cookies, crackers, cornstarch, noodles, breading, and candy you are eating with some form of rice, gluten, flour, corn. If it doesn’t say organic that pretty much tells you it’s a GMO product. Do you want my GMO lecture?? Click Here to get straight to the nitty gritty. While checking it out, think Kraft Mac and Cheese… I’m not fear mongering, I’m just saying pay attention and make informed decisions. Not to mention you will lose crazy weight if you start cutting back on all those grains! 😉
3. Labels with a NUMBER in the ingredients. Here’s a good one for you. Foods are spelled with letters, chemicals and science experiments are numbered. You can have kids help you at the store look at the ingredients and cull out anything with a number. (there is usually a color in front of the number). Don’t buy the hype, just because they put food coloring in cute little containers and sell it to us with happy faces and tell us it’s harmless doesn’t make it so. There are SOOOO many kids that are sensitive to artificial food colorings. It’s one of the top things that doctors will tell parents of Autistic, ADD/ADHD or other nuero challenged kids to AVOID because it can have drastic side effects. Click Here if you want to read more. Don’t risk it. Really, the color isn’t worth mental health. Choose the product without numbers in the ingredients. Especially for your kids.
Don’t freak out. Just check it out next time you’re at the grocery store and let me know what you think…
Create your Sunshine Life today. That starts with feeling GOOD.
xoxo to you.
P.S. – if you do need a splurge (because everyone does) I recommend keeping a bottle of Touchstone Essentials Pure Body Cleanse in the cupboard to help get it out of your system ASAP.
Yup, that’s my kids eating CORNDOGS. The nasty carnival foot long kind. Were you thinking… um I thought that kid couldn’t eat grains?? Well you were right. Also no chemicals, msg, preservatives,… the list is long. But sometimes you just have to say SCREW IT and let kids be kids. Look at her smile. In all fairness, Hugo eats the cornbread and she had the dog (those two are like Jack Sprat, one eats the meat, the other eats the carbs!).
So you all have permission to say ” I told You So” when tomorrow I’m whining about my terrible day! But that smile was worth it. Saying yes instead of always no. Dancing and laughing and playing.
Even though it got ugly later.. and people stared.. and … well it was ugly. It was worth it. To have a normal kid play kind of day.
We balance our life on schedules, sleeping and eating, vitamins, detox, epsom salt baths, exercise, blood sugar… it’s a dental floss tight rope. Sometimes we all need to let loose and dance on the bridge, eating cotton candy (gasp) and corndogs.
I’m grateful we went.
xoxo to you
Create your Sunshine Life today (even if it means cheating sometimes)
What is your favorite way to cheat???