Going, going, gone……. Primal!

Well it is official.  We’ve gone primal.  It has taken quite a while to get to this point but we have definitely arrived.  It meant me taking over the kitchen.  I haven’t been in charge of the kitchen in our home since around 1997, about a year after marrying my husband who had years of restaurant experience and was a whiz at stretching our limited food resources to feed a family of 7!   So I am very rusty to say the least.  I have had to inventory the kitchen, rearrange things to suit my way of being in a kitchen and do lots of research for recipes and ideas.  I am very tired, but undaunted.

I am finding tons of helpful information out there on the Web though.. Thank goodness! lol.  And I am having fun.   Like this morning, I made almond banana pancakes without FLOUR lol. The recipe called for an egg, 2 mashed bananas and about a tablespoon of almond butter.  I didn’t have almond butter so I used regular butter and “winged it” .  I chopped up almonds in my food processor, and added some of them as well as flax seed to the batter.  It was still rather runny so the pancakes weren’t picture perfect.  But boy oh boy were they yummy.   I added a bit more crushed almonds on top as well as some blueberries and then melted together raw honey and coconut oil to drizzle lightly over the top.  It was a total “Yes!”

My daughter Katherine and I also made some coconut milk to use in a smoothie recipe she found.  I got the coconut milk recipe from Wellness Mama.   Once the coconut milk was ready she used some of it, some raw honey,  some strawberries, and blueberries and whipped us up a smoothie that was very delicious and filling.   The rest of the coconut milk is in the fridge for use in other recipes.  And it was a cinch to make!

Off to check on our Jambalaya that is simmering for supper.

My quote for the week has been:

“Eat to Live rather than Living to Eat!”

Later gang!



CooCoo for Coconut! <3

Coconut Oil and Shredded Coconut

Look what came by Fed Ex today… my unsweetened  shredded coconut and my Coconut Oil. Both are from Tropical Traditions.   I use Coconut Oil in everything from cooking, coffee, oil pulls, deodorant and toothpaste!  I am going to use the shredded coconut to make coconut milk that will go  in my shampoo recipe.  It can also be used in smoothies, recipes or drink alone.

While I was waiting for all the ingredients to get here for the Natural Homemade Shampoo (from Wellness Mama), I found a shampoo at the store that doesn’t have sodium chloride, sulfates. parabens or gluten.

Argan Oil Shampoo

I tried the “no poo” shampoo way for a month and just couldn’t take it anymore.  My hair felt heavy and oily.   The article says it can take up to 2 months but I caved after one. This shampoo is working well so far until I can get my recipe together  from Wellness Mama.  I am not adding the Vitamin E capsules since they are optional.   I’ll try it for a while and let you know how it goes! 🙂

The home made deodorant has been trial and error for me.  I started out with Coconut Oil, Baking Soda, Cornstarch and Lavender Essential Oil because I had those on hand.   It did not work well because it irritated my armpits and made them itch.  I did a bit of research and some folks seemed to think it was the baking soda that caused the irritation while others said it was the cornstarch.  So I bought Arrowroot powder( to replace the corn starch) and Shea Butter  through Amazon and made one with equal parts of coconut oil and shea butter and added some arrow root powder to thicken it.  I used an essential oil for fragrance.  I realized on Day 1 that it was not going to work!  It smelled good but offered zero deodorizing !  Oops!  lol.   (woeful glance to my long suffering family who puts up with me).  So I hoped it was the corn starch and not the baking soda causing the irritation.  I reworked my batch to add in baking soda.     Voila!  🙂   Problem solved.   I am very relieved.  I also got this deodorant recipe from Wellness Mama!

Today I did a dry scalp treatment for my daughter Katherine that is from The Mother Huddle that is 4 tablespoons coconut oil, 2 -3 drops Tea Tree Oil and 3-4 drops of Rosemary Essential Oil.

Essential Oils

I worked it into her scalp with her hair dry.  She got a nice head massage that she enjoyed!  She kept it in for 20 minutes and then went to take her shower as normal.


She was happy with the results after being not so happy about the coconut oil running down her forehead (she kept bending her head down to look at her Ipod).

Next day: Had to edit this post to add that apparently there is Coconut Sugar!! *oh my gosh*  “Coconut palm trees are the natural source of this sugar. Traditional sugar  farmers collect the nectar of the blossoms from these sustainably grown trees,
and carefully craft a caramel-like crystal sugar. Perfect as a 1:1 cane sugar replacement  

Check it out here —>  Navitas Naturals Coconut Palm Sugar

My thanks to my daughter Heather   “Jeanie” Carlock for sharing this on FB!! 🙂

Well that’s enough out of me for now!  More later as my adventures with coconut oil and coconut continue.

Have a happy day 🙂

Lost and Found

Philippa's Grave Site

As my winding path takes its detours and such, this is a photograph taken today of me at the grave site of my birth mother, Philippa M. Thompson.  She gave me up for adoption in 1973.  It was always my intention to find her again someday.  Well today is that day.    But I wasn’t able to hug her and thank her for making such a difficult decision.   She died in 1998 at the age of 68.    So all I could do was leave some humble flowers at the grave site and continue on my path.

I am hoping to find other biological family who can fill in some of the blanks but some questions I fear will remain unanswered forever.

This part of my journey has made me by turns, angry, then sad, then reflective and back to sad.   What I am learning also is you can live 7 decades on this earth and leave barely a whisper of a trace that you were here.

Knowing a little about the health of my maternal side of the family has helped.   I am trying to figure out where she went and who my father was.  Then I can hope to fill in the paternal side.

But for now I am tired.   Time for a nap.  Its been an emotionally draining few weeks.

Do You Know Where You’re Going To?

Now looking back at all we’ve had
We let so many dreams just slip through our hands
Why must we wait so long, before we see?
How sad the answers to those questions can be

For the last three days I have been humming “Do You Know Where You’re Going To”, often subconsciously.   I realized this morning that I was doing it.

As sung by Diana Ross

I am still waiting for answers to the questions of where I came from long ago.    Some of the answers so far haven’t been happy ones.  But despite knowing that, I keep waiting for more pieces of the puzzle.  One thing I am coming to grips with is that where I cam from does not define who I am.  I define who I am.   I choose my path and my ultimate destiny.

I’m letting all my emotions flow over me.  I’m not fighting them.  I am though, reminding myself not to let them dictate my behavior and my attitude.  I am still me- the same me that I was Tuesday in those last moments as I held that envelope in my hand.  Before I knew what I know now.  I am wiser today than on Tuesday but I am still Me.  And that’s a good thing!  LOL!!

I may not always know where I’m going to but I am going to enjoy the journey just the same.


Truth is Stranger and sometimes sadder than Fiction

So…   I’ve been working my butt off.  Figuratively of course .  Literally my big caboose is still with me.  That sucks.  But I digress.

In the midst of working my… well you know, I had a flash of brilliance..  I decided to pursue getting to the bottom of my adoption story.  I was placed in foster care at around age 4 and adopted a few years later.  I live in Georgia so the records were closed until 1990 I think it was, when they changed the laws and you could get non identifying information for a fee and you could get the state to conduct a search for a fee.  I was broke so I did neither. But I did sign up for the Adoption Reunion Registry.  And then life went on.

Kids are now grown and life at least on the personal side is quiet so I finally got back to the who-am-I-and-where-did-I-come-from thing and sent off for my Non identifying information last month.  It came this Tuesday. And my world has been reeling ever since.

I had assumed all these years that 1. I was my BM’s (that’s Birth Mother), first child.  3.. I assumed she was in her early to mid 20s and 3. I assumed that she was from the South.  Errr.. WRONG! on every count.    She was 37 when I was born and I was her last child and she is from New Hampshire!  And unfortunately because the state says they never got my registration for the Adoption Reunion , I never got to meet my BM .  She registered in 1991 and passed away in 1998.

Now I  am searching for any maternal relatives.  I supposedly have 3 older siblings.  JoAnne  from The Adoption Database has found my cousin Ellen on my mother’s side.   So I’ve learned a few details about my mother’s family.  We have not yet spoken but I hope to soon.

So my attempts at weightloss have been at a standstill.   I am still taking my Omnitrition products and have loads more energy as well as sleeping much better than before.  But my food choices are abysmal!

Ok that’s it for now.  I am up to my earlobes in work so I better get back to it!

Have a great weekend folks! 🙂

Down the slippery slope of indifference

Isn’t it funny how a person can be really “sold out” on an idea and then not follow through?  oh there are plenty of excuses; but make no mistake – that’s what they are Excuses.   So begins the faltering foot onto the slippery slope and before you know it, you are ass over tea kettle and gathering momentum back down to the bottom of the valley you  thought you were climbing out of.   “You” in this case being me.

I weighed myself yesterday .  Weight is up again for the second month in a row.  I am back up at 233.4 .   Well too many soft drinks and too many sweets will darn well do that, huh?   Paleo diet??!!! Primal Diet….???!!!  um yeah well um.  Looks like if I am going to do that, I may have to go solo.  Which could present some serious challenges since I don’t do the cooking at my house.   But the fact that hubs is not sold out on my Primal Diet idea is no excuse for me making poor choices.    Case in point :  Ingles puts bags of raspberry chocolate in the clearance buggy and I buy one.  {What’s one gonna hurt right? I can just indulge in a piece or two now and then. No big}  Right so the bag o’ chocolate sin disappears in less than a week   And I lecture myself on my weakness and vow to not give in again; that is until we are in Ingles again and that clearance buggy is still there and there are more bags in the buggy of the chocolate… uh oh!!  Well it’s been a tough week and I need a boost so I grab another bag, again vowing that THIS time I will exercise restraint and self control.  Um yeah, NOT!  I’ve now been through 3 bags of the chocolate, though  I have had help from the aforementioned hubs.  Who is pre-diabetic and shouldn’t be eating the stuff to begin with.   Sooo… I have got to get my act together. 

Tomorrow…….. I’ll start tomorrow {as I stare longingly at my bag of Truffles hubs bought me on sale at the store}   Today is Mother’s Day after all.  I can be nice to me for one more day. *weak smile*

Better Than Okay

It’s been nearly 2 years now.  In May of 2010 my Mom’s last words to me as I walked out of her room were

“You’ll be ok, won’t you dear?”  I sobbed uncontrollably for nearly 2 hours afterward.   I had assured her I would be ok.  I lied.  I knew I was lying as I uttered the words.  But I think it it time to make good on my words, even if they were a lie at the time.   She would not be happy to know her daughter has made a big bad habit of not being ok for nearly two years.  But grief is a funny thing.  It takes on a life of it’s own and does as it will.  You just have to hang on for the ride and learn not to fight it.  Fighting it just makes the ride that much longer, darker, and lonelier.   Time for me to get off the ride and get on with it.  It being Life.   

When we are emotionally unwell, it spills over into other areas of our life.  Especially how we relate to food and what control we let it have over us.   

I want to honor my Mom.  Honor what she meant to me in good days and bad.  One way I can do that is by being healthy.   She worried about my weight … fretted over it much more than I ever have.  I don’t want to be food obsessed or weight obsessed.  I just want to be Life obsessed!   

She told me she wouldn’t really be gone.  I’d be able to see her in Nature.  Where ever there were butterflies flitting about and flowers and tress, I could find her there.  So my goal is to be healthy enough to be out in Nature so I can be closer, just a bit, to my Mom.


Seeing is believing… or is it?

I watched an interesting segment on ABC’s World News with Diane Sawyer last week.  It was on food labeling… particularly the term “whole grain”… Since our doctors and our government schools and advertising have been telling us for a number of years that “whole grains” were good for us , I have noticed a dramatic rise in labels shouting various products “whole grain” goodness at me.   I used to believe what I was told.  It says ‘whole grain” so it must be, right?  But what does “whole grain” really mean?  According to Wikipedia  it is ” cereal grains that contain cereal germ,endosperm, and bran, in contrast to refined grains, which retain only the endosperm.”.   Oookay.  So what are the FDA guidelines for product labeling for ‘whole grain” or “multi-grain’ for that matter?  Erm, well, there aren’t any.  Companies can claim pretty much what they want and basically they hope you don’t read labels.    Ingredients are listed on the back in order from the most to the least.  But you have to read carefully as both the entry for ‘whole grain’ in Wikipedia as well as World News blog on the subject entitled  A Guide to Decoding  Ingredients on Grain Products  both point out.  Wheat flour and whole wheat flour are not the same thing.  Wheat flour is refined  white flour and whole wheat flour is whole grain, wheat flour.   Confused?  Yeah me too.   The world news blog gives some helpful terms that are frequently used and what they really mean so if you are searching for that “whole grain’ bread you will at least know which ones arent the real deal .  Which is pretty much most of them *sigh*  All those years I ate, and made my kids eat, wheat bread thinking I was doing a good thing.  I was not.  That bread was made from flour that was just as heavily refined as the white bread. 

We have gone grain free at our house as part of our transition to the Paleo/Primal lifestyle.   and it has NOT been easy.   I knew it wouldn’t, but we have come face to face with just how much of what we ate on a daily basis was grain based.   Quite a staggering amount it appears.  I’d like to say I feel better now that we’ve gone grain free but the jury’s still out on that.  I am still going through withdrawals.  And we’ve had some slips like the day we were out running errands last week  and were starving and ate at Hardees.   I ate that big ole burger, bun and all.  I’d like to say I am repentant and remorseful… but yeah still working on that too *wry grin*   

I am discovering that eating truly healthy… staying away from processed foods and eating foods that are as close to their natural state as possible is not cheap!   I priced meat from farms that are hormone free and grass fed.  Wow!!!  The price is about 2 to 3 times higher than meats in my local grocery store!    So that portion of this project may never come to fruition.  But I do want to find local suppliers such as a farmers market for fresh fruits and veggies and we already buy local honey.   I am also trying to talk Roy in letting me get a chicken or two for eggs.   He’s not sold on that idea yet.

At any rate…. I am learning more and more to read carefully what I am buying and to do more investigation on things.   Things many times are not what they seem to be.