Sunday, October 23, 2016

Whole30 Day 1

Day 1 has been decent. I made it to the evening hours.  I have not had any major food cravings, I'm not struggling to figure out what to eat, and I'm not regretting embarking on this plan.

The day started out really early. We unexpectedly had three extra boys in our house to spend the night. Like any good preteen mom, I ran to Wal Mart and bought a bunch of snacks...cookies, soda, chips, donuts, and chocolate milk. Even with all that junk in the house, I'm not overly tempted by it right now.  I got up early because Evan and I were heading to volunteer and the boys were getting picked up early. 

I started my day with black coffee. I have only been a coffee drinker for a few years and that is with lots of Splenda and creamer. Suddenly switching to black coffee was a bit of a shock to my taste buds. But I survived. And it was the jolt I needed that early especially considering I am not getting my caffeine fix from Diet Coke.

Yeah, that was me prior to this morning.  I love me some flavored creamers!  I am currently missing my pumpkin spice creamer.

Anyhow, I felt decently successful managing this very first important coffee step. 

All the teenage boys left and I quickly cut up a small potato, onion, and sausage for breakfast. I wished I had remembered to buy a red pepper to put in the breakfast hash. It still tasted great.

A red pepper would have made it prettier, too!  I plan to eat this each morning this week.  I may or may not add in scrambled egg.  I think that will depend on my food for the morning.  I have been wanting to figure out healthier breakfasts for myself for a while now.  I ate protein bars for months and months and months.  Lately, I've been eating Special K cereal that still has a lot of sugar.  This seems like a great compromise.

Getting meal one finished really made me feel like I was on a roll!

Evan and I volunteered at the Poverello House for three hours. We cut up lots of fruit.  At one point, Evan helped serve the breakfast line.  I stayed in the back cutting onions and talking to a girl attending Fresno State.  There have been a lot of kids getting hours for college requirements.

I wasn't hungry while working.  After we got home I was feeling pretty hungry.  Eric started teasing me saying I'm eating dirt.  Ugh!  I'm not eating dirt.  But the stuff that comes from dirt is some of the best stuff to eat!

I made a salad with olives, almonds, salami, olive oil and vinegar.  It was good.

I love eating salads, but I do have to say I miss my blue cheese.  It just adds such a tang to a salad.  But again, I'm doing just fine without cheese.

I cut my arm and have no idea how I did it.  That little scar above the new cut was another random thing that I have no idea how it occurred.  And that one took forever to heal!  I wonder if healthier eating will help this scratch heal faster?

Eric and I went shopping in the afternoon at Trader Joe's.  I got a bunch of produce, some meat, and some almond butter.  And then I started getting really angry.  There is sugar in EVERYTHING!  And I mean EVERYTHING!  It is in salad dressing, in tomato sauce, in crackers, in salsa, and in pretty much every single prepackaged meat product.  WHY???? Why is there sugar in roast beef?  It just seems gross to me.

And it makes me so mad.  There does not need to be sugar in 99% of the items.  Is it a bulking agent?  Is there actually a purpose?  Does it enhance flavor?  WHY?  The one that sent me over the edge was McCormick taco seasoning.  Seriously?  Sugar in a taco seasoning?  Jiminy Christmas.  

Rant over.

For now.

We made chicken thighs wrapped in prosciutto.  There is a dividing line in the above photo because the family had theirs sprinkled with garlic salt....which has SUGAR!  Mine were sprinkled with plain old salt and pepper.  The prosciutto really enhanced the flavor of the chicken, so I felt fully satiated.  Plus I've got left overs to eat this week.

I also had a bowl of medley cherry tomatoes in a compliant dressing.

Thoughts so far.

I like the idea of eating healthy, but I'm not gonna is an effort to find compliant prepackaged foods and it is a bit overwhelming to think of making everything from scratch.  Plus, shopping makes me angry.  See above rant.

I have a bit of a headache and I am so very tired.  I don't know if that is from new food choices, or if that is from being up early with teenagers, standing on my feet for three hours cutting fruit at the soup kitchen, and spending a lot of time walking around the grocery store.  Regardless of the reason, I'm tired.

Like I said, there have been no cravings.  I miss blue cheese in my salad, but it was not an overwhelming craving. It was a little irritating to see chips and Oreos on my counter and not be able to eat them if I wanted.  But again, not a big struggle.

My hopes at the moment for the end of this plan: I'd like to kick the soda/diet soda habit for good.  I'd like to avoid fake sugar as much as possible. What I am pretty sure of is that I'm not going to lose sleep over trying to eliminate all sugar.  I'd drive myself crazy reading labels and getting mad.  I also hope to rely less and less on prepackaged food.  I'm getting the feeling that prepackaged deli meats aren't the best choice.

Tomorrow's plan is to eat hash for breakfast, salad with chicken for lunch and either pork chops or taco in a lettuce leaf for dinner.

Whole30...The night before I begin

I'm about to do something crazy...well crazy for me. I'm going to start a program called Whole30. In a nutshell, it is a program where you eliminate sugar, dairy, artificial sweeteners, beans and more from your diet for 30 days. It is a way to reset your body with real food. It's a reset if you will. It's a way for me to break my horrible sugar addiction, and it's a way to be more in tune with foods that don't treat me well.

It's not a fad diet. It's not designed to last forever. It's not a carb free diet. You are encouraged to eat healthy fats, natural carbs and lots of protein. It's also not a weight loss program.

I want to do this for many reasons. 

1. To break my sugar addiction.
2. To reset my body.
3. To train my taste buds to adapt to new tastes. 
4. To prove to myself I can do something for 30 days.
5. To learn which foods don't agree with my body.
*It's not a weight loss program, but I will not be unhappy if I lose pounds or inches in the process.

My fears:
1. Giving in to temptation 
2. Not planning enough in advance to have on-plan food accessible to me
3. Food boredom
4. Not seeing real results

The reasons to do this far outweigh my fears. I start tomorrow.

And in true "addict" fashion, I had a "last supper" of Cherry Vanilla Pepsi and Chewy SweetTarts.

And guess what? It didn't make me feel great.  It didn't even satisfy some internal craving.  The only reason I chose those items is because I knew they'd be off limits for the next 30 days.  I didn't choose them because I was having a sugar craving.  It's like I was trying to get ahead of the craving.  So dumb.

I felt bloated, fuzzy and ridiculous for eating that junk.

I'd like to keep track of how I'm feeling each day and the progress that I am making.  I'll still be weighing in at Weight Watchers...I rejoined about five weeks ago and have been having good success.  However, when they weigh me in, I plan to tell step on and close my eyes and have them not tell me my weight.  I don't want the number to influence how I feel internally about the better food choices.

I also plan to point out my food to make sure I am getting my 30 points.  That is not something you are supposed to do on this plan, but I'm deciding to do this for myself.  On the off chance that I gain weight, I at least want to make sure that I am getting enough food.

You are supposed to eat enough at meal 1, 2, and 3 to be able to avoid snacking.  I like that idea for a few reasons.  The snacks are where I often fall apart.  I also like the idea of my body knowing that it will get fed again in a few hours and not need to constantly graze. It's also easier in terms of planning.  I'm planning three meals, not three meals and three snacks.  And I would always gravitate towards fruit for the sweetness element.

I've been thinking about doing this since summer.  Finally taking the plunge.  My last day will be Nov. 21 which is just before Eric's birthday and Thanksgiving.  No one wants to eat fake butter on Thanksgiving!  Another good reason for doing this now is to avoid the temptation of Halloween candy and the endless snacking that we tend to do during parent teacher conferences.

There you have it.  My reasons for embarking on this crazy-for-me food plan.  I am hoping to feel great, have energy, bust the sugar habit, jump start a bit of weight loss, and learn to like new foods.

*I took my measurements and did a last weigh in that I'll see, but I'm not sharing those specific numbers.  As open of a book as I can be, I do draw a line at body numbers!

Hudson is skeptical!  Ha!  He doesn't even know what's going on.  I am not forcing my family into this new plan.  If I think they'll like a certain food or recipe, I'll make it for all of us.  If I know it will not fly, it will just be for me.  

Wish me luck!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

Happy 9th Birthday Hudson!

Every parents has this lament, and I am no different, but how in the world is it possible that our baby is 9-years-old?  The days are long, but the years are short.

Hudson is the kid that completed our family.  He's the one who made Evan a brother.  He's the one who keeps us laughing with his wit and charm.  Oh boy do we love this kid!

This was taken a few days before his birthday.  It was a weekend morning, and Hudson woke up really early, which is surprising because he can sleep in like a champ!  He wandered into my room and ended up snuggling with me and falling back to sleep.

So sweet and innocent when he sleeps.

I just wanted to hang onto the moment because it will be all too soon before he stops snuggling like this.

I can remember the baby days of him asleep on my chest.  Oh those days!

Fast forward a few days and Hudson turned 9 on Sept. 13.  He is growing into quite a fantastic little guy!

Birthday donuts are a tradition for us.  He's drinking an apple cider.  No beer at 7:30 in the morning!

Loving on my baby.

He's the kid who will still take pictures with me...even if they are goofy faces!

This picture is for Grandma.  We don't need a stinking napkin!

Evan enjoys birthday mornings.

Miracle of miracles.  The oldest child took a picture with me.

We baked two batches of cupcakes to take to school.  It is also a tradition that students get to wear free dress on their birthday.

Hudson had to wait until after dinner to open his presents.  He was super excited to get this shirt that he saw at Tilly's a few days ago.  Eric and I secretly went back to the store to get him the shirt and a hat!

He always wears his hats backwards.  I don't know why.

Hudson Hartman Forcey, we love you so very much!  You make us laugh, you smother us with your love, and you are such a kind-hearted and happy little boy.  Lately, you have a new injury every day, so your dramatic side is definitely coming out!  You are showing your athletic skill in the football field this year.  It's going to be so much fun watching you grow during your 4th grade year.  Happy birthday Little Chicken!

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Family Bike Ride and My Class in Action

Last Sunday we loaded up the kids and the bikes and headed to Woodward Park to ride the trails.  It was a lot of fun exploring the park, riding, getting dirty, and hanging as a family being active.

We have now finished an entire full week of school (plus the two days from the week before).  I think we are settling into a good groove of work, new classroom, and iPads.  The learning curve for the iPads has been so much quicker this year!  All but two of my 8th graders are returning students, so they didn't even need to be told how to access files or how to upload assignments.

The 7th graders have caught on quickly as well.  Tablets are second nature for most of these kids.  I'm finding it interesting that most of the kids are accessing their textbooks on their iPads even if they have a hard book available to them in the classroom.

My 8th graders working on a religion assignment.  They are doing really well taking care of our classroom, being respectful of the new furniture, and taking the opportunity to be comfortable and focused.

A surprising thing to me is that many of them like to hold pillows.  I think I need to get more throw pillows for them to hold on their laps.  I also want to get squishy balls/toys for them to squeeze and manipulate if they need to wiggle.  We don't think twice when  kindergartner needs to wiggle, but expect 13-year-olds to maintain for long stretches of time.  It's just not realistic.  They have the ability to move and be comfortable in this new setting.

I'm very curious each day to see which chairs are going to be the favorite.  The couch seems popular as well as the regular low table and the shelf table (in front of the red bulletin board).

Eric has done a lot of work for me.  We were at school today and he hung a bunch of pictures, oiled my squeaky glider, and is going to reset my projector.  I still want to get curtains.  That will be one of the final big things that I get to complete the room.

We had our first rally of the year on Thursday.  Evan is a student council member this year.  He is the boys sports commissioner.  The student council members help Mrs. Davis plan and run the rallies.  This year's back to school rally was a Hawaiian theme.  I was proud of Evan for getting into the spirit and helping to lead his school.

We have seen such great effort by Evan so far this year and could not be more proud!  He is working harder than ever before to keep up with his work, stay on top of assignments, learn a new iPad program, participate in sports, and get good grades.  So very, very, very impressed by this young man.  Plus, it's been fun having him in my classroom for Algebra and Social Studies.  So far, we are getting along!

Right now, both Evan and Hudson are taking a break from soccer, and I am LOVING it!  We have been going going going for five straight years with practice each week and games on the weekend.  It's so strange to come home after school, make dinner, and relax.  I know things will get busy in time, but for now, this break is quite welcome.

Sunday, August 14, 2016

The First Day of School 2016-2017

School started reallllly early for us this year.  Our school won't ever be in session in June or July, so we needed to start early enough in August to make sure we got in our 180 days before the end of May.

To get ready for the first day, we all got hair cuts.

Evan has definite opinions on how he wants his hair to look.  Luckily, both of the boys prefer their hair short.

Hudson waiting his turn to get that mop cut off!

 That line was shaved in very deliberately.

I feel like we can see his big brown eyes again!

I didn't go in planning to get a haircut, but it had been a while since my last trim, so I hopped in the chair for a cut as well.

Buddy's new weird habit. He hangs out in the bathtub.  I caught him licking the faucet, which is totally unnecessary because we give him water.

As usual, all of us had a hard time going to sleep the night before the first day of school.

The first day was great, and the boys met me in my classroom after school.

I always tell them to act like they like each other!

The first days of school wipes out the teacher as well as the kids!

Luckily, I have a reclining couch.

The year is off to a great start, and I can't wait to really dig in and start teaching my kiddos!