Thursday, April 26, 2012

Beeler family spring get-together

Every year the Beelers get together around Easter for a potluck and catching up.  Janel and Steve are always generous hosts, and everyone has a great time!  The kids do an egg hunt and swing at a pinata.  I love that the cousins are getting big enough to really play together now!  


Thursday, April 19, 2012

Food changes

In the past year we have changed a lot of our eating habits.  While researching what to do about Jaelyn's dairy intolerance, I have learned so much about the quality of what we consume.  And now, I can not un-learn it.  So we make changes.  We still have plenty of distance to go, but I am proud of what we have accomplished so far, and I wanted to share with you that it is do-able!

  1. We have switched to nearly all organic produce.  Occasionally we will get conventional citrus or bananas, but that's about it. For those of you who think that is a waste of money, or that it is silly because you grew up on conventional produce... read this.  What you ate twenty years ago is NOT what you are eating now.
  2. We try to eat only grass-fed beef, free-range organic chicken and eggs, and wild-caught fish (that have been tested for mercury levels).
  3. We avoid GMO's, soy anything, and chemicals.
  4. We drink water, organic coffee, and tea.  That's all. 
  5. We stopped eating 90% of any processed foods. We still occasionally eat crackers or tortillas chips, but I buy the kind with less than ten ingredients (of which I know what they all are, and they have no big offenders!).
  6. We starting seeing sugar and starch as what builds fat, not edible fat. 
  7. Greatly reduced the number of times we eat out.  When we do, we try to support restaurants that make healthy food choices (my personal favorite CHAIN: Chipotle. And no, McDonald's does not have any investment in them anymore!).
  8. We started seeing our plate as 50% plant food (or more), 25% healthy protein, 25% "starch" (preferably whole grain).
  9. We started vegan Thursdays, most weeks we don't eat any animal products on one day out of the week.  Justin will be on this week, but not the rest of us.
  10. We have learned to love vegetable juices (this was huge for me, I am rather picky), and my current goal is to make sure we have two a week.
  11. We've switched all our oils over to three - coconut, olive, and butter.
And I have many, many goals left:

  1. Get a reverse-osmosis system for drinking water (and liquid minerals to add to that drinking water since it will be stripped).
  2. Find a new produce co-op since mine shut down.  :(
  3. Reduce amount/frequency that we eat wheat and other grains.  And sugars.  Always reducing sugars!
  4. Veggie juices at least twice a week.  I need to get in a better habit of when I make them.
  5. Only consume raw dairy products.
  6. Learn to make water-kefir and drink bi-weekly.
  7. Buy locally-grown produce that is in season.
  8. Stop eating processed meats (lunch meats and bacon).
  9. Find a local source for healthy free-range pork products.
  10. And on a personal level -- figure out how to work regular exercise into my crazy days.
I am sure there are more that I am not listing, and this is just about food!  There is a loooooong list of product changes I want to make in our home.  But, it is working.  Our kids have a better attitude toward food - they crave healthy things, and though they still want their sweet treat after dinner - sometimes they are okay with fruit, or two small pieces of REAL licorice. We are getting there, and we really feel better!  The other nice thing is knowing that we are voting with our dollars, telling the big corporations that we no longer want their chemical-laden products and that it is time for a change!

And we are feeling pretty good about that!


Thursday, April 12, 2012

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Easter 2012

This Easter felt a little crazy to me, I was at the hospital photographing a birth until 4am, so I was a bit of a zombie.  But Easter is my favorite holiday, so I was determined to do the best I could.  We were up and out the door on time for church, which in and of itself is a miracle in this household!
Paige seemed a little tired, too.  Maybe I woke her up coming in at 4am.

It just isn't a holiday without a picture of the bigger girls trying to choke their littlest sister.  =)

In the evening, we had our annual egg hunt with the Swope family!

Hope you had a wonderful Easter as well!


Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Cha-cha-cha changes

Well, I've been taking a break on here trying to figure out a better way to make blogging part of my regular routine -- and to figure out what my regular routine IS exactly.  It appears that I am not really that good at time management.

Who knew?!?

Anyway, bear with me as I make some changes around here.  And my business blog.  And my amount of twitter and facebook.  There needs to be an easier way, and I am determined to make it all work together. Just not exactly sure what that is going to look like yet!  I will post some pics here and there until the changes are implemented - but just not very often.

I'm sure this is heartbreaking for the dozen of you who read this thing!  =)

Speaking of changes, anyone who wants a photography session in the manner I do them now, with the price I have now... call me ASAP.  Anyone who has inquired before the price change occurs will get the current pricing (here in the next couple weeks).  **Hint** mini-sessions are going to become a seasonal commodity, if that is what you're looking for...

Some things going on here:  Jaelyn thinks it is fun to use the potty.  She is also EXTREMELY stubborn.  Paige's hearing is doing much better, thanks to our awesome chiropractor!  She can also read at a beginning-of-first-grade level (via internet test), and can trace and write like nobody's business!  Lauren is getting ready to do her first school project on giraffes.  She will be seven here in about six weeks, and gets teary and stressed out when I ask what kind of a party she would like.  Seriously.  Justin's work is picking up here and there, and he seems to be happy with the direction things are going.  He started softball again last night and had a great time creaming the other teams they played.  I am trying to hunker down and really put into practice all the business things I learned back in February.  I am reading two new books about healthy food, and one about parenting.  Justin bought me a new camera-bag/purse for my birthday and I can't wait for it to get here... it's burgundy.  *yay*

Have a great day!  Love you all!