Monday, January 31, 2011

Go, Dog. Go!

I recently started an email with these words...

"Well Hello Again!  
I love that saying from my favorite book as a child "Go, Dog. Go!"  As a teenager I read that to my little sister and loved it still.  As an adult I read it to my children and appreciated it more.  It appears strange to others but to me - it is a great example of american literature at it's best for children; simple concepts, repetition, and an engaging story for adults."

This book spun an afternoon obsession
So I start to ponder this...
Why did I type those words?  Why did I start my email that way?  Why did I feel the need to then explain the thoughts that were running in my head?  Why did this little sentence send me back to my childhood and make me think about a children's book?  Who really knows?

Deeply I begin to wonder, what does it make me think about?  Is it the book or something more?

Well Hello Again - what do you think of?  Anything?  What does that make other people think about?  

We might say these words when we meet someone we have not seen in a long time, or meeting a person that we just saw moments ago.  It might be an idea of going back to an object - "Well hello again, you brownies you".  So by now I'm onto food...  This email was to a person that I had talked to earlier in the day and oddly enough I talked to her about food, and GFCF, and sensitivities / allergies that we have in our body.  See a trend here?

I really think that everything happens for a reason and the accidental email and meeting that I had with this woman today may lead to a real nice friendship and working relationship.  I digress... Like always :)

So - Well Hello Again - has brought me to think about our diet trend and trying even harder to work at eliminating more items from our diet.  I want to make a real effort to organize this weekend.  To sit down with Dad and work out a schedule that we both can share.  Plan the meals and do some prep work for those nights that will be ever so hard to get a dinner made and served in 45 minutes.  I want to work harder be think more 

Well Hello Again - Conscious eating!  Here we are ready to see you, hear you, and be with you!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Could she be?

Could my cousin be the most beautiful bride ever?  I'm thinking so - her personality and vibrancy just shine threw everything that she does!  I was so delighted to head to Detroit for her wedding on Dec 30th.  (Sad thoughts about not making it to the last cousins wedding :( Love you Becky!)  I wish that I had some of the totally awesome pics to post, but don't think I have that right to here is a link to the photographers blog - amazingly sweet woman I might add!

So, Sorry to all the other beautiful brides that have blessed  me by inviting me to help celebrate their joyous union.  Also, sorry that this started off with no food comments - but hey, it's the middle of January and I am still thinking about the wedding and the new relationship journey that my cousin has begun with an amazing person.  She is really so deserving of a wonderful husband and amazing marriage, she waited so long for everything to fall into place.  Love you Amy!  Thanks again for letting our little brood come and celebrate with you!

Onto the food...
We ate everything, had awful behavior, and probably irritated half the people we were around.

We had all been sick around Christmas, and if it wasn't for a great family we would have missed Christmas dinner as well.  My parents said, take a little extra ibuprofen and come over.  So we had a great holiday and then spent Sunday packing, and cleaning, and packing, and cleaning.  We left Omaha around 6AM!  We made it through winter roads to Detroit around 5:30ish local time.  I think we did pretty good.  Thankfully my cousin (brides sister) was delighted to have us that night.

All the travel and quickness of the trip mixed with our pennies meant that we ate fast food several times.  It was not the highlight of my mommy-ness but what can I say.  We really didn't watch what we ate, we had a great time, and were totally out of control most of the time.

Thinking about it -- we really should get back to reality, we have been home for two weeks now.

Sixteen Days - Away from home

Why did this never make it out In August???  Who knows but I thought better late than never eh?  I'm not even going to read it through for errors - just put it out there... have fun reading!

We recently returned from our annual two week end of summer vacation.  I thought I would catch-up by writing about our vacation.  We went to the Northwestern United States, I literally mean about all of them.  We left Nebraska for South Dakota - all the way through South Dakota to Montana, and Glacier National Park - then to Idaho for a family reunion - out to Washington and the Oregon Coast (Amazing!) - then we headed back through Oregon and Utah (Salt Lake City) and Wyoming - then all the way through Nebraska to Omaha.  Over 4,000 miles!!!

The map of our approximate trip route
This is the third year that we have taken a family trip with all of our children and my parents.  After going this distance I could write about many things, planning, food prep, travel with children or parents, etc...  But this is about our journey of eating better.
The husband and darling children looking out
into a valley in Glacier National Park

One of the first things my husband said was "No foofoo food on this trip!"  and he meant it.  He made sure that we had no special gluten / casein free food with us.  Except for the box of Will's favorite cereal Gorilla Munch that we managed to sneak in.

To prepare for the trip we made a menu of the things that we thought were pretty easy meals; breakfast, lunch, dinner, and some snack items.  We did this for the first few days thinking that we could get to a grocery store while we were on the road.  We planned each meal individually, thought of all the things we would need for each (including spices, food prep and cooking items, or anything special), and decided if anything could be prepared ahead of time.  For example - we patted out and seasoned hamburger patties, browned some hamburger for some other dishes, etc.

We really are loving Costco, with many organic and natural items it is quickly becoming our favorite place to buy food.  So we started our shopping at Costco, and after two other trips to two different grocery stores our little camper fridge and freezer were both full.

I was grateful that we bought food that didn't contain preservatives, and added colorings.  We have gotten pretty good at knowing which foods are ladened with additives and which ones are better.  Sometimes you just look quickly at the label and you see a large list of words, mostly that you can not pronounce, you know it is not something you want to eat.  If the ingredient list is short, or things that we recognize, it is something that we consider.  While planning to be away for this long we had to have some processed foods; cereal, breads, chips for quick lunches, real maple syrup, and simple items.  Of course we also stocked up on things like apples, carrots, celery, and plenty of salad fixings.

In an effort to be as convenient as possible we bought several jars of real fruit in fruit juice by Dole (I think).  These are supper handy and easy.  The only problem is the limited choice.  Why can't the food companies make things that are good for us?

The week of preparation and the hours of thought that went into preparing for this trip made it better than our first.  The food meal plan worked really well. We had everything we needed and the meals were all delicious.  In fact we didn't eat out for almost a week into our trip, pretty amazing!  Our only issue was that I forgot to bring the baggies of the gluten free pancake mix.  We had to eat regular pancakes... Oh well.