Sunday

Feeling really good today. Lip is healing well. Energy level is great.

Frozen waffles leftover from a previous meal. Just threw them in the toaster, just like store bought. But way healthier and cheaper! With ghee and maple syrup, plus apples, kiwi, and cherries.

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We have a busy day today, so lunch had to be quick. I spiralized a cucumber, soaked it in apple cider vinegar for a few minutes, and layered it on small slices of rosemary garlic farmhouse seed bread with sun dried tomato hummus, a dollop of soy free vegenaise, and paprika. This would also be a great appetizer or hors d’oeuvre.

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Went to a Zumba class today. So fun, great workout. Had this smoothie when I got home. Strawberries, maca powder, 5 dates, hempseed oil, almond milk, vanilla extract, and a splash of agave. I made it a bit sweeter than usual, and the maca powder gives it a rich, malty flavor. Totally tasted like a strawberry milkshake.

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We went out to eat with family for dinner. Buca di Beppa. I looked at their gluten free menu online, and knew the only thing I’d be able to eat on this elimination diet was the green salad. So I brought my own food to supplement. Roasted beets in citrus vinaigrette, sandwich bread and black bean hummus, and granola for dessert.

I dipped my gluten free/egg free/soy free/corn free/dairy free bread in olive oil and balsamic vinegar while everyone else did the same with the restaurant’s bread. When the appetizers came out (calamari and caprese salad) I broke out the black bean hummus and kept working on my bread. I intended to order the green salad with the restaurant’s signature vinaigrette, but found out from our server that the dressing has both soy and eggs in it. No biggie, just bring me oil and vinegar.

When my salad came, it was a huge bowl of mostly iceberg lettuce, sprinkled with chopped tomatoes, four (FOUR!) olives- 2 black and 2 green, and 2 pepperoncini peppers (that were just too spicy for me, so I couldn’t eat them). If I hadn’t brought my own food, at this point I would have been extremely hungry, disappointed, and irritable. I would’ve been drooling over everyone’s cheesy pastas and ginormous meatballs (which I did a little bit anyway, but more in a “How can I make something similar at home that will fit my diet?” kind of way, rather than a “OMG, that looks so good! Why am I struck with this stupid sickness while everyone else get to eat whatever they want and they don’t even have to think twice about it?” kind of way). But if I had been hungry and irritable, I’m sure my thoughts would’ve led to the more whiny, self-pitying type.

As it was, I was disappointed that I only had four olives (they were the only ingredient I was really looking forward to in the salad) but I was plenty full on bread, hummus, and beets. The salad was really just another side dish, not what I was depending on for nourishment. So I was happy and satisfied with my meal. And munched on granola while we sat around and laughed at my daughter’s antics (I think she was a little high on gluten since she rarely gets it, and she was acting nuts!)

Lesson confirmed that one cannot eat well at a conventional restaurant on a healthy, but restrictive diet. The measly offerings they do have are often not that good anyway (limp lettuce, grainy tomatoes, FOUR olives). It’s certainly not worth the money.

But, time spent with family is priceless, so it’s important to have solutions available that will allow you to stick with your diet, but still participate in a world that does not always make healthy choices easy. Bringing your own food isn’t always an option, but it worked for me in this case, and I’ll do it again anytime I doubt that I can find something suitable on the menu. It may sound melodramatic, but my life depends on it.

Wednesday

Breakfast was a yummy avocado fruit bowl with pears, grapes, and hemp seeds.

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I’d been reading my Clean Eating magazine and they had an article on homemade jellies and jams. They showed these jams on cheese and crackers. It looked delicious, so I satisfied the resulting craving with gf crackers (they do contain some milk fat as part of a butter flavoring, so it’ll be interesting to see if this causes any reactions), dairy free/soy free cheese, and grapes. Perfect!

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I did a P90X workout today. Shoulders and arms, and ab ripper. Still slightly sore from Monday’s workout, so it felt good to get loosened up. And, for once, I was able to do the ab exercises without the extra 30 pounds of wiggling resistance that is usually climbing all over me as soon as I lay down on the yoga mat. She was preoccupied watching a fairy movie on my phone and didn’t even notice I was on the floor.

Post-workout treat was a glass of almond milk with stevia and 2 squares of dark chocolate with orange flavor. The chocolate contained some milk fat, but since there’s no milk protein, I don’t think that’ll be a problem with my elimination diet, but I’m going to keep an eye out for reactions. The chocolate also has artificial flavors. Don’t know how this slipped by me at the grocery store. I almost spit it out when I read that, but decided to consider it a treat and let it go. Hopefully my other healthy behaviors will balance it out.

And dinner was classic Italian. Spaghetti with meat sauce. Used pastured ground beef, canned tomatoes, frozen carrot and greens juicing pulp, herbs from the garden, and Himalayan sea salt.

And for the salad, plucked some leaves off of our Swiss chard plants from the garden. Plus chives and chopped basil, and a handful of store bought spinach. Can’t wait to get to the point where I can make a whole meal just from what’s growing in our back yard. Maybe next year…

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Soooo, I was a little premature in declaring my husband naturally healed from his sickness. He took a turn for the worse tonight and ended up going to urgent care and being diagnosed with pneumonia. He’s now on strong antibiotics. I’m going to do what I can to support his immune system (probiotics) and minimize the negative impact of the medication. But pneumonia is way beyond my healing capabilities at this point. Praying for lots of healing rest and quick recovery.

Wednesday

Cinnamon rolls!!! Fantastic recipe from Nourishing Meals. Made with buckwheat flour. No gluten, no eggs, no soy, no dairy, no processed sugar. Topped it with their recipe for “cream cheese” frosting, made with sweet potatoes, applesauce, coconut oil, arrowroot, maple syrup, and vanilla. Crazy delicious. I made a double batch of the frosting to freeze for later.

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Smoothie time. Kale, strawberries, tart cherry juice, almond milk, banana, hemp protein, and some probiotics (sneaking them in for my toddler).

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Threw the leftover meatballs in the leftover soup and added some frozen greens. Stretched to feed 3 adults and a toddler with more leftovers for tomorrow.

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Veggie sushi rolls. Spiralized jicama, shredded carrots, and julienned yellow peppers with the homemade salad dressing I made a few days ago. The dressing was way too garlicky the first day, but it has mellowed out now. Still has a garlicky bite to it, but much better.

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Amazing gluten free, egg free bread recipe in Nourishing Meals. Farmhouse Seed Bread. All the gf bread recipes I’ve encountered have included TONS of eggs, so I was really excited to try this one. It’s super hearty, and will work nicely as a sandwich bread.

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Drank the whole thing. So thirsty. Haven’t been juicing since I’ve been out of juiceable produce and stalling a grocery trip by trying to eat through what we have on hand. I’ve really missed it and have inadvertently been consuming less liquid. Gotta be careful with that. Hydration (with the right kind of liquids) is important to maintaining an alkaline pH.

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Monday

Breakfast is an openfaced egg sandwich with gf bread, ghee, romaine, tomato, and sauerkraut. With pear slices and blueberries.

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Lunch is gluten free, dairy free mac ‘n cheese. Loving this cheese sauce. Have quite a bit leftover. Thinking of adding some salsa or taco seasoning for nacho cheese. Mmmmmm- haven’t had cheese dip in foreverrrrrrr! (I used to LOVE cheese!)

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Here’s the recipe from Nourishing Meals. Mine came out fine using brown rice flour instead of the sweet rice.

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Getting low on laundry detergent, so it’s time to make a batch. Here’s the ingredients. I ended up doubling this recipe (but didn’t add more soap- 6 bars seemed like enough), and I always play around with essential oils- added lemongrass and lime to the original lavender for this one. I call that combo L3- it’s my home’s signature scent. For body care products or topical application, I typically use therapeutic grade oils. But for laundry (and most other household cleaning purposes) this jug of cheap oil saves us a lot of money. It’s supposedly 100% pure lavender oil, but the quality is obviously inferior.

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Fels Naptha processed into itty bitty bits.

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Dump all the boxes in and mix, mix, mix. This takes a while because you have to get everything incorporated. I put in the EOs at this point, too. I’ve found the easiest way to mix is just using my hands. That way, I can feel and break up any big clumps as I’m mixing.

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My ginormous glass jar. I think it’s like 4 or 5 gallons or something. Huge!

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And extra to share with family and friends (or to refill the ginormous jar).

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Start to finish, this took me about half an hour. Not bad for a year’s worth of laundry detergent (depending on how much I give away). I originally started doing this to save money, but now I prefer this formula to anything else out there, regardless of cost. Conventional detergents just smell weird. Conventional fabric softeners smell horrific. We use vinegar if needed as a softener. Works great partnering with the sodas in the detergent, and rinses completely clean and fresh- no smell at all.

Just as my tastes are changing with my diet, my sense of smell has changed as we cut out more and more conventional products. What used to smell nice sometimes strikes me as toxic and chemical-ly these days.

A little orange-carrot juice to build up my immune system and eliminate those toxins…

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Dinner was black bean tacos with my vegan cheese sauce (taco-fied with seasonings). De-lish!

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Green juice to alkalize my system, give the good bacteria in my gut some yummy prebiotics, and assist my body’s detox efforts.

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Friday

Scrambled eggs with dill and asparagus for breakfast.

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Had a juice date with a friend (and a play date for our daughters). Made this green juice (kale, parsley, fennel, cucumbers, apples, celery) and a sweet red juice (beets, apples, carrots, strawberries).

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Snacked on cinnamon sunflower truffles.

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Lunch was random leftover veggies. Roasted cauliflower and a golden beet.

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My daughter requested waffles for dinner. So I obliged.

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Let me be clear that there is not anything healthy about this mix, except that its gluten free. Tonight’s dinner was a treat for us. The mix includes sugar and questionable leavening agents. But it does make delicious, fluffy waffles. We topped ours with earth balance coconut spread, maple syrup, and blackberries. I’ll be working on my own homemade mix soon, so there’ll be no need for store bought.

Thursday

I’ve been totally preoccupied and forgot to take pictures today. Breakfast was quinoa muffins from the freezer and a big mug of green tea. Had watermelon as a snack. Lunch was leftover pasta with tofu and broccoli. And 34 ounces of coconut water (that stuff makes me feel soooo hydrated!)

Snacked on berries and bee pollen, and I finally remembered to take a picture.

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Dinner was cinnamon sunflower truffles. Don’t judge. They’re healthier than they look.

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I swapped out coconut oil for the olive oil and did not use any maple syrup. No need. The dates were plenty sweet. Super yum!

This recipe is from my new favorite cookbook: Nourishing Meals. It’s full of gluten/dairy/soy free recipes and offers lots of tips for raising healthy kids. So far, every recipe I’ve made from this book has been a hit. Loving it!

Post-dinner snack. (Since “dinner” was really just a snack anyway.) Real cheese and crackers.

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I felt really good all day today. Tonight, I’m noticing lots of teeny lesions in my mouth. I can barely feel them, but they’re everywhere. I don’t feel tired or achy- which would signal a flare, so I’m not really worried. The thrush from the last flare is almost completely gone. My lip continues to heal, though it still looks really gross. I’m using the dexamethasone mouthwash diligently to control all these minis. Hopefully, that’ll do it.