Today has been a lovely day. Stormy (with a little actual rain!), kids playing with the tiny kittens that were born a few weeks ago (mama kitty belongs to the landlord), a little crafting, and some yum organic blueberries (I'm giving them a try to see how my hypoglycemia is healing).
Hope your day is lovely, too!
Okay, so I'm introducing a new topic. Confession: I'm a food junkie. I read about food, research nutrients (macro and micro), experiment with different food lifestyles, experiment with different idealisms, theories, philosophies... I'm currently finishing a distance course on holistic nutrition. I read scientific material about food (ya know, the kind where you have to read and re-read a sentence 10 times before it clicks). I have many, many blogs I frequent with the main subject as, you guessed it, FOOD. It's an obsession, er, passion of mine. It's something I care about deeply, think about almost constantly, and work on daily. I'm currently in the middle of cooking for the teachers of a yoga workshop (today and tomorrow). I love creating food, too. Yep, food and I are best friends and ... worst enemies. Or rather, REAL food and I are best friends, and pseudo-food and I are worst enemies.
I love real food. What's real food, you ask? Anything that is recognizable in its eaten form as the same substance in which it emerged. Rather, if you can pick, hunt, gather, plant, milk or grow it - it's real food.
I was raised mostly raw vegan, spent a few years as a nearly 100% raw vegan, attempted fruitarian, and have also been a cooked vegan, vegetarian, and omnivore. I've also had my fair share of junk food.
Most recently, I've been fascinated by a mostly Paleolithic-based diet. That is, the predominant diet we humans ate during the longest part of our evolution. While I am thoroughly happy with the idea of everyone eating a whole foods diet (post-agriculture revolution), really we've only been eating this diet for a drop in the bucket of time compared to the amount of time we've spent eating a pre-agricultural diet. So what exactly is a Paleolithic Diet? Basically, anything that can be hunted or gathered. Milk and grains are very new foods. I'm not against the idea that many of us have adapted to eating those things (I'm still in the middle of researching this), us being biological scavengers and all, but I do believe that most of us have so many imbalances and mal-absorption issues that the best healing diet is the one our bodies thrive on. The diet we ate for millions of years.
After lots of struggling with an unhealthy reliance on the hormones (broken down) sugars release in the body, I've finally hopped on the Paleo train. Though not purely (I'm not a purist or dogmatic - I like to keep mental space open for new ideas) - I am still eating raw dairy for the fat content (and vitamins D, A, and K2). But I am experimenting with the idea of eliminating dairy for a time to see if it will help speed up the process of gut healing.
I do have to say, though, that I feel 100% better since I've started eating this way. I've eliminated grains, starches, fruits, and all natural sweeteners (except stevia). And I am happy to say that my previously out-of-control blood sugar level is completely stable 24/7. That, in and of itself, is a profound miracle. I don't feel like a terrifying monster anymore (irritability. Need I say more?). I feel great.
Anyway, I wanted to share some of the yummy Paleo foods I've been making lately.
Organic chicken salad, toasted pine nuts, greens, tomatoes and cucumbers. So good.
Paleo Chili: grass-fed beef/bison, onions, stewed tomatoes and tomato paste, carrots, chili, cumin and sea salt. Delish.
I'd like to write more often about food. Get a little scientific, a little food crafty, and a bit naustalgic. Hopefully there are a few other food junkies out there as well!
I'm still learning how to interweave life, photography and thoughts together with this blog. I love the portrait work that I have been doing, whether a child, baby, birth or family. But I also don't want this to become a portrait photographer's blog. As much as I love taking beautiful photos of my friends and other lovely people, I'm not a photographer. I'm just a person who loves photography of all kinds. There are many other subjects I want to contemplate, experiment with, and include in this space. So I will try my best to find the beautiful balance of sharing both.
On Sunday, I went up the mountain to my favorite spot (Crystal Springs) with a fun family. The mama and I have been friends for a quite a while now (met online in a chance encounter). The papa and I just started doing Celtic fiddling together (which is so much fun). They're a great family and I enjoy their (inner and outer) beauty very much.
This past week I spent my time at home, all alone. I know, crazy, right? Every year Tyler's mother hosts a family campout for all the grandkids on the family property. Last year, I went with the kids and this year Tyler went with them. It was a wonderful week for them and for me. I spent it relaxing and enjoying my first ever break from everyone in my own home. Saturday evening I drove out to get them and spent the night enjoying family and a lot of really great kids (somewhere between 20 and 30 in all).
The kids always have so much fun every year, and it's such a great opportunity for them to get to spend quality one-on-one time with their cousins and Nana.
When I got there, I took one look at my girl and immediately noticed something different. She's grown up right before my eyes. With the increasing height, maturity and new adult teeth...well, it's amazing to watch. She is such a beautiful creature, inside and out.
During the week, Tyler finished a structure he started 10 years ago (when he and his parents lived out on the property). I was so impressed when I saw it. All that is left to do is to cover the porch, insulate, and paint (more or less). Now we have somewhere cozy to sleep when we go out there.
While they slept, Tyler and I climbed the hill next to the cabin. What an amazing view at the top!
And every year is family photo time. What a goofy bunch we are!
Those who know me have heard me relentless babble about my adoration for New England. My eagerness to hit the road and land in some backwoods Downeast farm. It's true, I'm in love.
But, what I don't mention very often, is my love affair with the Northern Arizona desert. Yep, that's right. My eyes are wide with wonder each and every time we travel through, regardless of the countless trips and hours I've spent there. My personal favorite? Monsoon season. To give you a visual, here are some shots I took a couple months ago while we were there. It still takes my breath away.
I've thought about joining Real Food Wednesday for a while. I may not do it every week, but throw it in every so often. We'll see.
Here is my finished Sauerkraut! (Yes, that's a capital 's.' It's divine enough to deserve it.) I could have fermented it for longer than a week, but I'm an impatient gal. It tastes great, so I want to eat it already!
And something I am just adoring lately:
Found it on my camera, and it makes me smile everytime I see it. I love seeing how my life affects my children's. Especially when it's positive.