Day 81

Satisfying day. I got jobs done, saw family and managed to fold all of the laundry on the laundry couch! It is amazing to see the rest of the couch. The animals keep coming up and looking at it, sniffing it and then sidling up to it suspiciously – they see it so rarely. The lads immediately took to leaping off the top of the couch on to the floor or each-other. Only one of them bled. And it wasn’t for long.

After lazing in bed until 8am (8AM!) I got up and fed all of the children and fur-kids. Eventually fed myself and threw myself in the car to head up the hill to see my grandies. I can’t take the three Dutchmen with me at the moment because both are in a delicate state, so I left them at home ‘cleaning’ which I think mostly amounted to a marathon Lego session on the Music lounge floor.

Nana has dementia and since Christmas has been in care, currently in a nursing home with lovely staff and fellows oldies. Grandad moved in next door so he could be near her and visit but had a fall a couple of weeks ago, and then because of a brain bleed has had to have neurosurgery. He is in recovery and is doing very well but will need to move in with Mum when he has finished rehabilitation. Poor Mum and her man have been basically taking care of the two of them by themselves since before Christmas – Mum’s sisters do try to help but they don’t live in the same city so they are mostly moral support. Anyway – long story short I head up the hill to see them twice a week to try to give Mum the day off where I can.

I love going to see them – I used to drive the boys up to see them every school holidays – because they were up north it was harder to get to them regularly. This way they are only 40 mins away so I can hang with my fave oldies whenever I like in theory. Nana is funny. She has built quite a comfortable world in her head, based on actual events, twisted all out of reality and all stories end with people adoring her, or apologising to her for perceived slights, or recognising her essential ‘right-ness’. She has had some very bad moments, and has said terrible things (to poor Mum mostly) which is difficult for people to deal with but she is ok with me. We have always been each-others favourite person. I am prepared for her to not be alright with me and when she is I don’t take it personally because I can see she isn’t in control anymore. It’s mostly like visiting a toddler now.

Grandad on the other hand is a totally different man but in a good way – he finally gets to talk! Nana always did the talking for him or over him, and it is really cool to hang with him and have him so chatty. He has always been a voracious reader and I knew he KNEW stuff but he lost his sight about ten years ago and got depressed. The one good thing that has come out of this whole thing is that Grandad will get to have his own opinion for the rest of his life now. And he will be with people who can encourage him to learn new stuff again and open new doors for him technologically – My mum and her man are techy geeks.

So, a satisfying morning hanging with my oldies in their respective situations, assuring Nana that yes indeed Grandad is still alive and yes that’s where I was going next, Talking to Grandad about how we both really like Hospital food and ordering his meals for the next day. Eventually I had to jump back in my car and head home to see what state the house was in – The GD’s parents came around for dinner tonight and we needed the house CLEAN.

We did the mad as massive clean. I folded washing like a BOSS. I dusted shit like organised people do. I hung up dresses and ironed and got ‘work clothes’ sorted for the week. It was amazing. The GD vacuumed, and did dishes and helped the lads tidy up their toys. Then I made a delicious and healthy dinner for the in-laws and the kids ate it all! It was a miracle. Spicy fish fillets, steamed asian greens and homecut fries (parsnip, potatoes and kumara). Delish.

AND THEN. As if I am not awesome enough – I baked pizza wheels for Master 7’s lunches, and another batch of bliss balls. Fucking homemaker queen.

In other news, the re-introduced dairy has caused the skin on my face to get red and peel off all over the place. I am SO pretty right now. Dairy is definitely a no go.

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Day 78 – the best bliss ball recipe I know

So I finished the block of dark chocolate. It was inevitable. Over the course of the week and when I think about it, it may have been the cause of my unshakeable headache all week. But I don’t regret a single square. I enjoyed every second of it and was ‘mindful’ of every bite.  (you see what I did there?) Part of my reckless lack of food-guilt came from having logged in to the forums on IQS today only to find like-minded women who were not in fact skipping through fields of tall grass and flowers all skinny and glowing and feeling all unburdened from their hopeless addiction to sugar. No. Like me these women felt pretty much the same. No real weight loss to speak of. Skin the same, spotty or not, and mostly they were staring down the barrel of a lifetime without Whittakers and thinking about ending it all. Like me their cravings had not in fact fucked off in to the dark and gloomy past and they were having little tiny battles with themselves every day.

These women, like me had been logging on intermittently to the forums – which are described to subscribers as a great support and most of what we are paying for – and finding testimonial after testimonial of ‘AMAZING RESULTS’ and ‘I HAVE SO MUCH MORE ENERGY NOW I RAN A MARATHON BEFORE BREAKFAST’ and ‘I USED TO BE 300 kilos BUT NOW I’M ONLY 34 kilos AND I AM SO MUCH HAPPIER NOW’ (even if my body can’t support the weight of my head). Disheartening to say the least when, like me, you are plodding along and every thing feels sort of ‘Meh?’.

Please don’t get me wrong – I enjoyed the change up of food, and I mostly signed up for food ideas – not weight loss and glowing skin – but a girl can dream can’t she? And the temptation to beat myself up over not doing it right somehow has been strong. But reading the thread gave me heart. I think it is helpful to hear all of the experiences – not just the ones that serve to promote the program itself and I have to acknowledge the respectful and – yes supportive – way the moderators of the threads let the conversation happen and the legitimacy they gave to the way these contributors were feeling. Not everyone who gives up sugar will lose weight, not everyone who gives up sugar will notice massive changes in their health, not everyone will start glowing like a pregnant supermodel on a macrobiotic diet.

And probably there are a multitude of reasons but I think what you were eating before you start the program has a lot to do with it. One man was drinking 6 cans of pepsi max a day. A DAY! And he lost 32 kilos in 8 weeks. No fucking shit.

So. I am going to try to keep sugar out of my diet. I am going to keep cooking some of the family favourites out of the program and I am going to remember the headache I have had all week from the dark chocolate. But I am not going to beat myself up over the odd slip. I am not going to see my lack of weight loss as failure and I am going to share with you the best bliss ball recipe I have found on the magical interwebs. I can’t take credit for this one and I can’t remember where I got it – sorry! I haven’t been making them this year because they have dried fruit in them (strictly banned by IQS) but I have decided these are better for me and the fam than shit, nutrient deficient junk sugar and if I am going to ‘slip’ I would rather it was something I had made myself.

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You will need;

  •  1 cup of medjool dates (pitted and chopped)
  • 1 cup almonds
  • 1/3 cup of raw cacao powder
  • 1/3 cup of coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup of shredded coconut
  • 1 tablespoon of chia seeds

Soak the dates in warm water for ten minutes if they are hard (don’t bother if they are soft and squishy). Add the nuts, cacao, shredded coconut, coconut oil and chia seeds to the food processor and blitz. Add dates to the mixture and blitz again. Let the mixture sit for ten minutes. Roll into balls (about a soup spoon worth each time). Roll the balls in more shredded coconut. Pop in to the freezer for about an hour before eating – I keep mine in the freezer – best place for them!

They are just the thing after dinner or for a mid morning snack – yum!

Ooooh I almost forgot! Guess what arrived in the mail today! Almost a good enough reason to take up coffee again ha ha

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