Snippets: The end of the WLC

As we were entering week 4 of the Whole Life Challenge, Leslie and I decided to call it off.

It wasn’t doing anything for us. No amazing energy boosts, no weight loss, no change in body composition, nada. Nothing as promised.

It’s possible that because we already eat so similarly to the WLC dietary restrictions, that our bodies didn’t even notice a difference. (I also am so strung out on sleep deprivation and nursing, that the hormones aren’t letting my body let go of anything.) I certainly didn’t experience any of the “withdrawal” symptoms that the WLC literature warns about. Leslie had a couple days of cravings, but nothing huge. He said he actually just felt hungry and unfulfilled...

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Meal Plan: January 20-24

Week two of the Whole Life Challenge! Week one was interesting. The first half of the week, I felt like I was barely treading water, getting food prepared for my hungry people. My kiddos were eating full meals almost every 90 minutes! And since Leslie was still learning the ropes of all the dietary restrictions, I was prepping a lot more meals for him as well; he didn’t have much to scrounge from since peanut butter and honey sandwiches are not allowed!

I feel like I hit my stride by Wednesday, and things will be easier this week.

I’m not going to even try to put these recipes into a daily order; that didn’t happen at all last week. Rather, I’m going to list out the ones I’m going to try...

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Whole Life Challenge Meal Plan: January 13-17

My husband is embarking on a Whole Life Challenge for the next 8 weeks, that involves a rather strict dietary component. Crazy dietary restrictions are nothing new to me, but I’ve never cooked for the whole household with the rules. This time, the whole family is going to go along. I will bend the rules for the kids - allowing some gluten free grains and honey - but for the next 8 weeks, we are all going to be eating super duper clean!

Here’s what the rules look like:

No Grains or Starchy Carbohydrates. Only sweet potatoes are allowed. No wheat, rice, corn, barley, quinoa, even white potatoes and soy. And of course the more obvious… no bread, pasta, bagels, cereal, pastry, baked...

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Hey Laura, How Do I Get to Know My Neighbors?

Anonymous writes:

“You’ve mentioned a lot lately on Facebook about how awesome your neighbors are and prodding us all to get to know our own neighbors. Problem is, I don’t know how to do that! I feel weird just knocking on people’s doors, offering to be their friend!”

Oh, believe me, I know how intimidating it is to put yourself out there with strangers! But as you know, I think it’s a worthwhile endeavor to do so with your neighbors. You have the opportunity to create connections with people whose lives are proximate to you - people who can give you practical, real-life support if you need it. It’s great to keep up with Facebook friends, and to have close friendships that are maintained...

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Hey Laura, tell me about Manuka honey

I’m researching Manuka Honey, as the next thing I want to add to our daily health regimen and medicine cabinet. I already know that raw honey is a powerful antibacterial, antiseptic, anti-fungal, antibiotic…pretty much it’s a super hero in your cupboard! Manuka honey is even more powerful because it is especially high in the antibacterial component methylglyoxal. I want to upgrade to Manuka honey for immune boosting purposes; I’ll keep our local raw honey for eating (it’s relatively cheaper), but I’m hoping my children will take to Manuka honey better than spoonfuls of cod liver oil (although, I must say one of them actually loves her fish oil!).

Manuka honey is made from the flowers of...

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Hey Laura, what’s a good quality but inexpensive kitchen knife?

A friend asked me to find her “a decent santoku knife that will not cost me an arm and a leg?  A knife that will do the job but not a knife that will impress knife lovers.”

A good, sharp chef’s knife is a kitchen essential, but it amazes me how many people don’t invest in their tools! If you are serious about cooking, you will save yourself so much time, energy, and frustration if you invest in a good knife. You don’t need an entire block of high-end knives. Ideally, you should have three: A 8-10” chef’s or santoku knife, a 5-10” serrated bread (or “utility”) knife, and a 3” paring knife. You can get away with just the chef’s or santoku knife, though.

So here are my...

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Recipe - ACV Health Tonic

If you’re a hippie-health type person, you probably already suffer through your daily dose of apple cider vinegar. If you’re a parent, you’ve probably tried unsuccessfully to make your gagging kiddos quaff it down as well.

Why?

Well, there’s this whole thing about your body’s pH level. You want it to be alkaline, because that’s correlated with better immune function and overall general health. (Low alkaline levels were connected to inflammatory bowel disease, in this study, and immune function was impaired by acid pH levels in this study.)

You can read a bigger overview of the “Whys” as well as a list of acid-forming and alkaline-forming foods right here.

Your body maintains a...

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