Wheat Free Week 1: The Good, The Bad and the Oh, So Ugly

Wheat Free Week 1: The Good, The Bad and the Oh, So Ugly

Our family is in the middle of our first week going ‘wheat free’ according to the diets listed in Wheat Belly and Grain Brain.  Read about our decision to change our diet in last week’s post, Goodbye Wheat, Goodbye Anxiety? I’m About to Find Out. Week 1. Oh… it’s been interesting! It was full of surprises from the store, my kids, my plate and my body. I’ve spent a considerable amount of time on Pinterest and the internet, gathering recipes and looking at menu plans. I knew before I started this change that I would have to invest that time and prepared for it, so at first it didn’t seem too overwhelming. I brought some new foods into the house to try, and didn’t replace any of the bad foods. After a week of gathering recipes, I wrote out the ‘plan’ for Week 1 and went grocery shopping. Surprise #1 – You can spend A LOT of money in the bulk food store even when you’re NOT buying candy. Almond flour is how much? Ouch. Surprise #2 – For the first time ever, I kind of wanted people to notice the foods in my cart while at the grocery store. Surprise #3 – The kids rooted through the grocery bags when I got home. They loved the different smells of things and begged me to shop ‘wheat free’ all the time. Coconut – yay! Lots of nuts – yay! Dark chocolate – double yay! Not-So-Surprise #1 – The enthusiasm lasted all of five minutes until Oldest Daughter realized ice cream is now a forbidden food and there is an ice...
Goodbye Wheat = Goodbye Anxiety? I’m About to Find Out

Goodbye Wheat = Goodbye Anxiety? I’m About to Find Out

Although I hid it for many, many years, it’s no longer a secret that I’ve struggled with anxiety my entire life. As a kid, I remember nights where I would lay on the sofa with my head on my dad’s lap when I couldn’t sleep because my head was swimming in a way I couldn’t describe. As a teen, I spent as many as two nights a week vomiting before bed because of nerves. In my twenties, fear of going places for dread of an attack started to set in and take a regular hold. By my thirties, there were weeks on end where I couldn’t bring my self to go to Wal-mart and going to church meant sitting near the back. Public seating in any location always required an aisle seat where I could have more ‘space and air’. Conversations with others in crowded foyers or at parties often resulted in my ‘smiling and nodding’, pretending things were normal while inside my mind was sinking, struggling to stay afloat. It was only when I was about thirty that I learned what I struggled with was anxiety. Giving it a name seemed to help, but I still lived in shame and didn’t start sharing with my closest friends about it for another couple of years. Now, a lot of people know. And I’ve found out I’m not alone. The healing journey has been a long process for me. For a long time, I struggled with guilt. As a Christian, should God not heal me? Is my faith not strong enough? Maybe I need more exercise… maybe I need less...
Why Netflix Is Costing You More Than You Think

Why Netflix Is Costing You More Than You Think

Gone are the days of $5 movie rentals. With Netflix, you can get unlimited access to a number of movies each month for just under $10. What a deal! What a steal! Or is it? Netflix may be costing you a lot more than you think. A few months ago, I was trying to find a certain foreign show on the internet only to discover it was not viewable from my country. Then I remembered Netflix. Sure enough, they had the show. Since our family has never signed up for it, we could get a trial month for free. Perfect! I could watch the show I wanted and then cancel. Except Netflix doesn’t want you to cancel. They are banking on the fact that you won’t cancel once you sample their wares (isn’t that what drug dealers do?) and they are usually right. But they didn’t get me. A couple days after I watched my show, I browsed through the other offerings Netflix has. The reality donned on me. I no longer have to go to a video rental store – the video rental store is right in my house! And therein lies the problem. Here is what I discovered about Netflix, and why it costs more than you think: It’s Too Accessible – There are all kinds of movies I would never rent from a video store, and now I’ve invited them all into my home.  There are genres and topics that go against my faith… and if I sign up for Netflix, I’m paying to have them delivered directly to me (whether I watch them or not)....
When Did I Become So Boring?

When Did I Become So Boring?

Tonight, I looked in the mirror of my soul and saw someone I didn’t expect. Boring Mom. Boring Wife. Boring Friend. Where did this mundane person come from? I used to be fun. I used to laugh more. There used to be an adventurous spirit somewhere in this cautious, fearful body and I’ve done some pretty courageous things. I’ve travelled to strange places. I’ve fired guns, rock-climbed and preached to prisoners. Fixing cars with my bare hands, racing friends on the highway and driving down deserted country back roads in the middle of the night were all common activities. Now, I make sure I’m in bed by 10, my seatbelt is always fastened, and I stick close to the speed limit. I always wash my hands before eating and I always follow the rules. I know – it’s the safe thing to do. I’ve matured. I’m a mother. Call it being responsible. But it’s boring. What happened to me? I confess to being a minimalist – to live with less and live the abundant life. But am I? Is this abundance? Is waking-up-and-realizing-it’s-Saturday-so-I-have-to-clean-the-toilets, living life? Don’t get me wrong – I LOVE being a wife and a homeschooling mom. I do find significant fulfillment in both these roles. I don’t think there’s anything wrong with knitting, following rules or having safety awareness. The problem is I’ve stopped living. I’ve given in to the fear. Little by little, the fears and anxieties I’ve faced over the years have crept in. Instead of facing them and ‘doing it anyways’, I’ve let them win, one-by-one. And now I’m boring as I sit in...