2020's Word of the Year

2020 word of the year- Release
Release control of what I can't control. Release worry. Release fear. Release...

Friday, February 18

Book Review: One Thousand Gifts

I am not a fan of nonfiction and I rarely read it. But I have read Ann Voskamp's blog for quite some time now and her book was getting rave reviews so I thought I would read it. I was not prepared for this book. It's hard hitting, soul crunching, get to the heart of the matter stuff. But it's hidden in the language of a poet.
If you get nothing else out of this book take away these words: "Eucharisteo--thanksgiving--always precedes the miracle."  And that is just the beginning of the book.
Originally I had planned on reading this book and then passing it on to my mom. But I had to buy her one  because I'm going back through mine with a highlighter to remind me of the things that Ann has reminded me of that I had forgotten.
Pick it up at your local bookstore or get it on Amazon.com like I did. One Thousand Gifts-A Dare to Live Fully Right Where You Are.

(this was written in February of 2011 but for some reason I forgot to publish it. If you still haven't read this book, take the time. You'll be glad you did.)

A Touch of Winter

This picture was on Ann Voskamp's site, so I'm assuming she took it in Canada. But it could just as well be Nebraska or any other plains state. It reminded me of home.

A week ago we had that much snow, but this week we had weather in the 50's and 60's so the snow is gone. Every bit of it. We had several days of sunshine and it was like medicine to the soul. The boys have spent many hours after school playing in the backyard. I'm treasuring this time because I have a feeling that soon we will be engulfed in snow once again.

I've been thinking lately...I need a team.

I don't seem to have much time to do much these days except for keeping up with the housework and the boys. For those of you who think I must be lazy...I challenge you to come keep up with our Alex. He's like a little tazmanian devil on speed. I can never let my guard down. I walk out of a room and he instantly gets into something that he shouldn't. So...I don't get to sit down and read while he quietly plays at my feet. I can't make bread while he sits at the table and colors. You see Alex rarely sits. Even when he's watching tv he's in constant motion. I do all of my tasks with one eye and one ear on what Alex is doing. If I go to the bathroom he climbs on the kitchen counter to get into the cabinets. If I talk on the phone and forget to watch him I may find a toilet full of rolls of toilet paper. I had been putting him in his room when I needed a few minutes of privacy, but last week he got mad and threw a boot through his window. That was expensive. So...I spend most of my time chasing Alex.
At school Alex has a team. There are several teachers and aides that work with him. He is showing great progress and I was very encouraged after parent teacher conferences. But he is still very busy and has to be monitored at all times or he gets into things he shouldn't. I was feeling a bit low when I thought about it because he is doing better at school then at home. But then I realized that they get to take turns herding Alex. No one person has to watch him all the time. They can turn their backs without worry. They can take a break. That's when it hit me...

Friday, February 4

Funny Things Kids Say

Preston as he gets in the van after school: "Mom today we had gluten free apples."
Me: "Honey, I think all apples are gluten-free."
Preston: "No Mom, it means we didn't have to pay anything for them."


Tuesday, February 1

Food Dyes and Additives

About 15 years ago I noticed that often if we went out to eat that I would react badly that night. For instance, if we went out to supper many times by midnight my hands would be swollen and tight, I would be extremely thirsty and sometimes my heart would even pound all night. ( a particular time where I unknowingly ate something cooked in whiskey comes to mind) So I have been aware of how food additives can affect us for quite some time. I try to avoid processed foods. Last Friday night we went to a company party with my husbands coworkers. By 10 o'clock I knew I was in trouble. My hands were swollen, I was incredibly thirsty. Even though I drank plenty of water hoping to flush it out I woke up Saturday with one of those headaches where you feel like your head is about to explode. I suspect it was nitrates or salts in the meats or potatoes that were served.
In the last couple of years we have learned that Alex is allergic to food dyes. Once we learned this and have been careful about what he eats his behavior has improved immensely. We have been able to take him off his ADHD meds and he does just great...unless someone feeds him things with food dyes. And there is the rub...it happens quite a bit. Last month he had red m&m's in sunday school. We spent the afternoon stopping him from hitting his head on the wall, throwing toys, kicking anyone who got close to him. Yesterday he had those little goldfish crackers in sunday school and we had a similar day. A friend gave him Altoids that are made with red dye #40 and he acted like he'd had speed. Food dyes are everywhere and in foods that don't even need added color. You have to read every label...I mean every label. The other day I picked up something that was white and it had dye in it. What??? Gum is another thing we have to be careful with.

I have found some vitamins that are colored with carrot and beet juice. And I recently discovered one kind of fruit roll ups that don't have food coloring. I'm glad to see some manufacturers are  trying dye free items. I hope they sell well so more are produced. Until then I'm going to have to continue to read labels.

Here are a few links about this increasing problem: