Tag Archives: eating

I am not a tree-hugger.

Recycling is about as close as I get to being “natural.”  Nothing about me is environmentally sound.  I love aerosol hairspray.  I consider cosmetics to be a necessity.  Even with 4 kids, I used disposable diapers with every single one of them.  But this one thing about me kind of makes me feel like a tree-hugger.

Here's a picture of our "Bountiful Basket" from last week. We get our produce fresh every week for only $15! It's probably the best $ I've spent on something in a long time.

I’ve put my family on a whole foods eating program.  This might not be a big deal to some people, but for my family of 6, cooking everything from scratch used to make me want to crawl in bed and not get up.  I thought it would be way too much work.  Cost way too much money.  But that was before I tried it.

Like my husband, I grew up on Hamburger Helper, Kraft Macaroni and Cheese, and canned fruits and vegetables.  We were from an era where easiest and cheapest was best.  I’ve come to find out, that’s not exactly true. Cooking and eating whole foods is so much easier and cost-effective than I ever thought it would be.

Here’s my basic plan:  I look at every single label on a food item.  If I don’t recognize an ingredient, I don’t buy it.  After doing this for about 3 months, it’s pretty unbelievable how many unnatural things I was putting into my body.

Some of you may think this seems like a lot of work, and for the first month or two, it was.  But now that I’m familiar with what ingredients mean (preservatives are the biggest offender) and how to cook whole, it’s actually pretty simple.  I’ve even cut my grocery bill by about 1/4 each week.

Even my kids and husband are getting on board and recognizing what is the best for their bodies.  I drug them away from sugared cereals in June kicking and screaming.  But now they’re happy, healthy, and feel great.  If my 10-year-old son can do this, believe me, anyone can!

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Date Night

Having 4 kids takes up a lot of time. Sometimes just moving from one place to the next takes time. Picking up toys, putting dishes in the dishwasher, hanging up laundry, and the list goes on and on. Needless to say, date night is something that would not naturally happen. Luckily, I have a love of going out!

I love to try new food, see new movies, and just generally get away from my kids. I realize that not all married couples share my love. Some married couples love being with their kids day after day, night after night.  Although, this seems like not so much fun for me, I know that some moms and dads love it.  I, however,  have found that having a date night is a necessity for a strong marriage, even if you don’t have kids. It’s a time to let go of whatever has happened at work or at home and be together with your spouse. Even if your date night consists of shopping at Target and going to 5 Guys. Time alone is what counts. It helps you to remember why you fell in love in the first place.

It’s not always easy to find time alone. If you’ve seen the movie “Date Night,” you know what I mean.  You have to rally.  I may not be as bad as Tina Fey’s character, but I have used every excuse as to why I don’t want to have a date. Babysitters cost too much. Restaurants are all booked. There are no good movies. I’m too tired. Every excuse can be remedied with something. Babysitters cost too much? Have a “date” at home with a nice meal and a movie on demand after the kids are in bed. Restaurants all booked? Nope. That never happens. OK, maybe on Valentine’s Day, but there’s always at least one place where you could go. No good movies? Than go for a walk. Too tired? That’s EXACTLY why we need to get away!

I said before that I love going out. I love going out with my husband. I also love going out without him. Although date nights are hugely important for a strong marriage, so are times spent away from your spouse. The expression “Absence makes the heart grow fonder” really rings true. At least for me. When I am not with him, I remember why I love being around him. I love that I have him to go home to.

I know marriage isn’t easy. No one said it is. But having a friend in your spouse makes even the toughest times seem easier. Set aside time to be alone. Mark it on your calendar or phone. If it’s not a priority, make it a priority. And you will soon see how important, fun, and needed date nights really are!