Wednesday, November 18, 2015

My Go To Snack - Paleo Chocolate Zucchini Loaf - No grains!

My go-to snack. I literally eat this everyday. I freeze it in individual servings (two slices wrapped in piece of parchment and tied with twine) and take one out for my lunch kit each day. Sometimes I eat it straight up. Sometimes with a little bit of almond or peanut butter with jam. When I was being bad I used to top it with cool whip and strawberries (but my tummy didn't like that very much so I gave it up).

I've swapped out the zucchini for pumpkin puree and it works just as well. Since I've made this recipe at least 100 times I would say its pretty fail-proof.

Warning - its not overly sweet. Feel free to increase the sweetener factor or switch it up with another sweetener if Truvia is not your thing. I seem to tolerate it better than almost any other sweetener so that's also my go-to. If you can handle some extra sugar I'm pretty sure adding in a few chocolate chips couldn't hurt the taste factor either.

Make sure you let it cool completely before you slice it (using a serated knife).

Hope you enjoy it  rely on it as much as I do. You've got to make this clean eating/allergy avoidance thing as easy as you can. This is my secret weapon for keeping my hands off of the sweets/grains...................

Paleo Zucchini Bread - Grain & Dairy free

by MamaChanty
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 50 minutes
Keywords: bake bread snack dessert candida-diet friendly dairy free paleo almond flour arrowroot powder chocolate zucchini
Ingredients (1 loaf ( but I usually do a do)
  • Dry Ingredients
  • 1/3 cup blanched almond flour
  • 1/3 cup organic coconut flour
  • 2 Tbsp ground golden flax (I grind whole flax in my coffee grinder)
  • 2 Tbsp arrowroot starch flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 3 Tbsp cocoa powder - 100%
  • 1/4 tsp fine sea salt
  • Wet Ingredients
  • 3 free run eggs, beaten
  • 1/2 cup pure pumpkin puree or 1/2 cup shredded zucchini
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 Tbsp coconut oil, melted or grape seed oil
  • 2 Tbsp applesauce
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 2 Tbsp Truvia (Stevia/Erythritol blend or sweetener of choice)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. I usually grease a glass loaf pan with grape seed oil and then put a strip of parchment paper on the bottom and it never sticks.
Fully combine wet ingredients and dry ingredients in separate bowls.
Mix wet and dry ingredients until fully combined.
Bake in oven for 50 minutes.
Remove from heat and let cool fully before slicing.
I always make this as a double batch. I slice the loaf and freeze in individual servings.
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Saturday, October 10, 2015

Happy Thanksgiving - An Exercise in Gratitude!

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

As you may know I recently went through a rough patch. I wasn't feeling great physically or mentally.

Over the past two and a half months I have done a ton of self-care and self-reflection. And I realized that I was completely focusing on the "body" part of the mind-body-spirit connection. The body part is important but I learned the hard way that it doesn't operate (not successfully for me anyway) in isolation if you aren't taking care of the whole package.

On the "mind" front I realized that I needed to work on changing my attitude and shifting my perceptions. Thought patterns become habits and I had gotten into some pretty bad ones.

So one of the things I have been doing for the past month has been writing a GRATITUDE JOURNAL. Each night before I drift off I write down three things that happened that day that I'm grateful for. Some people may just do this instinctively, out of habit or are just naturally optimistic, but I think its been really helpful, for where I'm at in my journey,  to put it in writing. I actually look forward to it. And it is starting to "retrain my brain" to look for the positives.

Some of my gratefulness entries were pretty funny in hindsight. You can tell what days were great and what days were so-so. Some days I'm just happy I kept us all alive. But looking back over my entries it makes me realize how blessed my life is........

One of my Gratefullness journal entries for last week...........
probably not the most fabulous day but we survived it!
Because I love lists............and its Thanksgiving, I'm also going to do a quick top ten things I'm grateful for - the first 10 things that pop in my head. I don't need to overthink it or make it perfect, I just need to do careful, its habit forming!!!!

1) My hubby - we will be married for 10 years next month and he has supported me and adored me no matter what we (I) have been going through. Many highs and many lows but I always feel loved and don't feel like I have to be perfect. Good thing. And even though house renovations give him so much stress his kidneys start shutting down, he has remodeled most of our house and is currently building me a beautiful bathroom. Because I'm so cheap that I would never pay someone to do it..........but I still love beautiful things;
2) My 1st born - this kids SKIPS around all the time. She doesn't walk, doesn't run, she skips. She's happy. This was the kid that barely smiled until she was four - my fussy little baby and grumpy toddler. She has a joyful spirit;
3) My 2nd born - She reminds me everyday to stop focusing on the destination and just enjoy the journey. Her lack of concern with time and end goals can be a challenge for a type A mother but a great lesson in being in the moment;
4) My baby - He is so playful. He's ready to goof around from the moment he wakes up. It takes nothing to make this kid giggle. And who doesn't like (need) to play;
5) Canada - We are going to be OKAY Canada. We will wake up the day after the election and it will be OK. People are really getting themselves into a state of fear and dread over this election. We are still going to be some of the luckiest people in the world no matter what happens;
6) I get to work part time. One of the biggest blessing in my life - like winning the lottery. I've sacrificed things in order to do it but they have all been worth it;
7) I have the resources to try all sorts of crazy, out-side-the-box treatments to try and cure my mysterious issues. I have access to the internet and library so I can educate myself and keep looking for solutions.  And they are WORKING. As my energy healer said yesterday...."I can't believe you are the same sad little person I met a week ago". Things are happening:)
8) Food. I love food. I can't eat a gazillion things that normal people eat but I still have unlimited options and never go hungry. My newest palate adventure: KOMBUCHA - almost unpleasant but at the same time addicting;
9) My girlfriends and my family. There are so many people I learn from and lean on all the time. Even if I am a little weird, they still put up with me;
10) My body. Sometimes I feel like its betraying me when I treat it so well and it still doesn't want to work properly but it can do a headstand on a paddle board, it can dead lift my body weight and its learned all sorts of new and crazy yoga, dance and balance exercises this year. It works hard for me.

That was really easy. So I just have to remember those when I'm having an off-day!

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Energy Healing - My experience

Or the beginning of my experience anyway.

Last Friday I went to see any energy healer.  Not somewhere I would have ever envisioned myself ending up.

But when you have constantly evolving physical and mental ailments, and you refuse to take pharmaceuticals, sometimes you end up on the path less traveled.

Plus I kind of gave up about a month and a half a ago. I was being such a good girl (no stress, eating like a champ, taking my supplements, sleeping, meditating, practicing daily yoga, dry brushing, steaming, ya-da, ya-da, ya-da - a ridiculous amount of self-care)  and nothing was working. I was steadily feeling worse and worse. Even my 4-year old shoulder injury decided to flare up for no apparent reason (like, really flare up).

I felt very broken and defeated. I had felt low before. But this was almost harder because I have no reason to be low. I really don't have any stress. My life is really amazing. I want to enjoy it.

But there is clearly some major imbalance in my body and my old bag of tricks was not helping.

So I begged God to take over.  For probably the first time in my life I said "That's it, I'm done. You take over". Might not seem like a big deal to you but it was a big deal to me. I'm a control freak and I really surrendered.

And of course things started to happen. Within a couple weeks I had a business card in my hand and someone strongly urging me to book an appointment with an energy healer. A nice Christian gal she said. She'll fix you she said.

So off I went. Tramping down any skepticism I had as best I could. I showed up with an open mind, just dying to know which one of my Chakra's was blocked. I go on Pinterest regularly and study the Chakra charts. I can never figure out which one it is? Well, there's a reason for that - you'll find out if you can bear with me.

Here is what happened...................................

We go into a room set up for massage therapy and, of course, I immediately blurt out "I'm nervous". I always think clairvoyant people are going to see nasty things inside me that I don't want to know about. She assured me I wouldn't levitate or anything (I was relieved and mildly disappointed).

She gave me her "story" and why she believes in energy medicine. Turns out she is much more scientific about the whole thing than spiritual. Or at least that's how she came across. If you are curious she follows the Eden Energy methodology.

I told her my story which included many tears. It makes a person feel so vulnerable to admit all your weaknesses out loud to a complete stranger. I actually felt like crying as soon as I walked in the room. Not sure what that was all about.

Anyway, she started out by "testing" my energies/meridians and gave me exercises for each one. Don't ask me what exactly she did but it involved me trying to counterbalance as she pushed my extended right arm downwards. If the corresponding meridian was strong, I could easily counterbalance her light pressure. If I was not strong, my arm would basically give out. That happened A LOT. I'm not talking physical strength (I do work out almost every day - toot toot), its energetic strength. Which apparently I don't have.

Interestingly, I was "stronger" when moving backwards instead of forwards. Then she asked me to read a sentence left to right. I read normally. Then right to left (backwards). Its just spewed out of my mouth. I was actually pretty shocked I could read backwards like I was on speed. But, you guessed it, that is not good.

She gets me to do some of her energy exercises and she tries it again. This time I read backwards like a normal person. And she continues to retest each meridian after I have done the corresponding exercise. I pass. Yeah.

She then got me to look at a picture with an X on it. She did her arm test - I failed. Then she showed a picture of two parallel lines. It so appealed to me, I love order. I passed. Happy dance. Nope. That means my energy is just flowing in parallel lines which is not good. It's supposed to cross back and forth through the body. Shucks.

I left with a list of these exercises that I do three times a day. Takes about 8 minutes each time. I've had to do them in somewhat public places and I know I look like some new-age hippy but you gotta do what you gotta do. There are all sorts of videos on YouTube - look up Donna Eden Energy Routines if you want to try and DIY it.

Next I got to lay on the table. She did some work with magnets, which she said worked really well on me? Okay. Sure. Then she did a whole bunch of, I guess, Reiki-type stuff. I kept my eyes closed almost the whole time and tried to focus on my breathing so I don't know exactly what was going on. I think lots of waving her arms over my body (not touching) in swirly patterns. She also used a cold laser over certain organs, shone a light on my shoulder and physically laid her hands on me a few times.

I didn't feel any pain or unusual sensations (I was secretly hoping for something dramatic to happen so I would be miraculously CURED). But I did notice that my FEET were freezing even with a heater on in the room, a blanket and the massage table heater cranked. And I could feel awareness/ vibrations/life/energy in the left side of my body but not the right. I tried really hard to focus my mental energy on my problem shoulder but it was like a dead zone. Which is likely the problem.

This whole process took two and a half hours. I was supposed to be there for a maximum hour and a half. But I'm special. I require special attention.

So what was my prognosis??????

Which Chakra was blocked?

The Doctor of Natural Medicine that referred me said I had a blocked heart Chakra. Yep. For sure that's blocked. But DRUMROLL....................

They are all blocked. I am a big blocked mess.

Apparently my energies are completely scrambled. Not flowing. All my Chakra's blocked. I'm not ROOTED at all. I have polarity.

At one point she was testing my Chakra's, don't ask me how, and she just said "Yep, blocked. Yep, blocked. Yep, Yep, Yep, Yep, are you even walking around?

This seems to be a theme. In the past two months, every health professional that has "laid hands on me" has basically told me the same thing.

Like I said, she was more scientific about things than spiritual. She didn't tell me what possible physical or mental trauma in my life may have caused the energy state I'm in. I have some ideas that I'm trying to explore on my own - I don't believe its one thing but a combination of a lifetime of digestive ailments, prolonged periods of stress during my childhood and again later in adulthood, some poor lifestyle choices and my personality.

But she says she can fix me. Actually, that she can teach me how to fix myself. She's really into the teaching thing so you can become self-sufficient. I like that.

She also said my aura is yellow but very tight to my body. This supposedly stems from fear (hmmmm, its not like I have anxiety - lol) and explains why I'm always so cold. And it had a Hole in it. Which apparently she also fixed, but she's not sure if it will hold.

No worries, I'll be going back for round two this Friday so we'll see.

As soon as I left I felt SO TIRED. Like I could barely hold up my head. I actually had to go lay down for a nap which I never do. To be honest I felt like I could just sleep for the rest of the day but I forced myself to get up and moving (after an hour). I was also uncharacteristically thirsty for the rest of the day.

So that's my experience. My grand adventure into energy healing.

Now its still early days so I don't want to make any conclusions. I'm just trying to trust in the process and go with the flow. But speaking of flow, I have sailed through what is usually a week from hell with barely a twinge of moodiness or insomnia. And when I meditated this morning I could actually feel some sparks of life on my right side - not much but a bit. My shoulder feels better this week than it has for the past six. Something is shifting.

I am feeling SO MUCH BETTER. Life is starting to look pretty rosy again. Can't say if its the energy work, all the herbs I'm taking, the Candida diet or all the mental and spiritual self-work I have been doing but things are moving in the right direction. And it feels good. Thank-you God!

Wednesday, September 30, 2015

My Winter Bucket List

I LOVE LOVE LOVE lists. Love.

Always have. 

The thing is that I'm supposed to be focusing on "being" not "doing" all the time. Being in the present.

I tend to live in the future. Which results in me being a total worry wart. Because the future is unknown. And the unknown is scary for a control freak like me. And fear leads to anxiety. But lists about the future make me feel like I'm taking back some control.  Hence, I've always loved lists.

Unfortunately, the lists don't really help with anxiety in the long run. They just keep me focused on the future. So I'm trying to tone it down on the lists.

That being said, I'm also working hard on using mindfullness to shift my perception of my situation. And one of my "situations" is that winter is brewing. And winter in Winnipeg, when you are cold all the time to begin with (see my blood analysis post that confirmed my blood is "sticky" and not circulating properly so I REALLY AM ALWAYS COLD), is pretty tough. As soon as the first frost hit this week I could feel my brain going to that negative place of dread.  So I need to work on shifting my perception of my situation. 

I do a summer bucket list each year. Which I really enjoy. Of course I do.....its a list. But really, who needs a bucket list for summer. Everyday is easy to look forward to. Summer is full of sunshine and adventure by nature.

Winter. That's another story.

So I decided that it's okay if I make a Winter Bucket List. Its a list. Its kinda making me focus on the future. But in a good way. Its also helping me shift my perception of winter. Because there are really a lot of great things about winter too!  I actually had to stop myself from going too crazy - as to not set up unrealistic expectations and find myself trying to check off the boxes rather than enjoying the journey. 

So here is my list. A list of things I'm going to look forward to doing. And be fully present when I'm doing them. And I'm actually not going to care if I don't get through it. For the record I didn't quite finish my summer bucket list - and I was okay with it - mostly. I'm making progress!

And if this doesn't work, I'm scraping my list and were heading down south for a couple of weeks in February.

Sunday, September 20, 2015

Live Blood Analysis - The LIVE results

Wow guys. I have so much to tell you. These past two months have been quite a journey. But its going to have to come in pieces as I can only handle so much as one time.

I've been a hot mess.

Absolutely nothing stressful is going on in my life. I have practiced self-care out my ying-yang. I'm a clean-eating machine, exercising (but not too much), meditating, getting sunshine, dry-brushing, steaming, going to the chiropractor, doing regular yoga block therapy, sleeping, reconnecting with friends. Sounds blissful right.

Not. I'm a hot mess.

If you read my last post I shared a bit of my "issues" in there. The ones I felt like sharing. Most people see the mask that I firmly put in place. Even I sometimes can't believe the amount of turbulence that is going on behind it. But its there.

I recently made the realization that although I tout the "mind-body-spirit" approach to health I had really only been dealing with the "body" part of the equation. I can control what I eat and how much I exercise. Easy-peasy for a control freak like me with a will of steel so that's where I invest all my time and energy. Except its not working. I'm still a mess. I'm out of balance.

But I'm not one to give up, give in, quit. So I have been reading, soul searching, and opening my mind to new ideas. I'm finally ready, or desperate enough, to tackle the mind-spirit aspect of my health. Of my life. My spirit adventures will be coming in a post soon.

Nevertheless, I'm also not giving up on the "body" part of the equation. They all need to work together. So after debating with myself (literally for years) about whether to go for a LIVE BLOOD ANALYSIS I finally did it. I felt like I was cheating on my naturopath (so sorry but I just feel like I've been through her bags of tricks) but I did it.

I went to THE HERBAL MARKET ( on St. Anne's Road in Winnipeg. The appointment was almost 3 hours long ($150 with a coupon). I saw a nurse, a micro-biologist and the Doctor of Natural Medicine.

I was provided with an overwhelming amount of information and I'm not going to lie, I didn't really comprehend everything they told me. I'm pretty well-versed in a lot of this stuff but I couldn't quite keep up. So I'm making notes on some of the things they told me: 1) so I remember since I'm sure I will want to come back to this time and again and there is no way I will remember all of this, and 2) to give you an idea of some of the things they might be able to tell you if you think its something you might want to try.

Here goes - the highlights from my live blood analysis and consultation;

1) Low blood sugar - they did a blood sugar reading and I was on the low end of "normal". Per the nurse this should have been higher given the fact that I had just eaten a strawberry smoothie on the way there. Apparently that might explain, or at least partly explain, why I'm ravenously hungry most of the time and can't go more than a couple hours without eating;

2) Low blood pressure - 90 over 60 - My blood pressure has been low for a while so this was no surprise. Apparently this is okay as long as I don't feel like passing out - I don't usually so that's a good thing but I think there is something more to this;

3) Faint Pulse - this is not the first time a nurse looked at me funny and said "I know you are alive because you are talking to me, but I can't find your pulse". But apparently it was a first for her. She eventually found it, and it was normal. On the very low end of normal in terms of beats per minute just really faint. By my "vitality" is not what it should be so this makes sense;

4) Candida - the good news. My "primary" candida - the newbies were actually low and fairly normal. Yay! Makes sense since I have been significantly restricting sugar (including fruits) and eating mostly low fod-map foods since the beginning of August. Plus I was taking some herbal anti-fungals. I'm fairly certain these would have been raging if I had been tested at the end of July so this is great news;

5) Candida - the very bad news. My "secondary" candida (symblasts), the little beasts that have been around for a while and have made a nice impenetrable protective shell around themselves are moderately bad. That means my Candida has been around for a long time and its making it rounds through my body. These guys are not going to give up their territory easily. Its actually kind of scary as these guys are destructive but at least I know what I'm dealing with;

6) Low Immune system functioning - no surprise there. Two strep infections in June. Also, my "regular" doctor had referred me to a hematologist (who didn't want to see me btw and cancelled the appointment) due to my low white blood count so I know my immune system is struggling along. I don't know why, could be the Candida;

7) I'm Blood Type O and a Thyroid Body Type - This part was interesting. There are some people that swear by the blood and/or body type significantly impacting everything from how you metabolize food to your personality, emotions and ability to lose weight. I actually have looked into this before so my interest is definitely peaked and can't wait to learn more. What I did gather from what we discussed and I have subsequently read is that Type O blood should stay away from dairy and they have more difficulty than any other blood type with digesting grains. VALIDATION;

 8) Protein metabolism - I also learned (as per #7) that my blood/body type does best on a high protein (from animal sources), low carbohydrate diet during meals and snacks. I got the green light to never become a vegetarian. Mixed feelings on this as the environmentalist in me really would love to give up meat but when you can't eat grains that is really impossible. Anyway, I felt quite gratified that I had intuitively already figured this out. I'm still a mess but I have figured some stuff out on my own. So if I'm eating the right foods why am I still having issues.......see next.........

9) Low Stomach Acid - Somehow she could tell from my blood results (something about undigested proteins) that my stomach acid is low. As such, I am not fully digesting foods. Which means my small intestine and colon have to work harder than they should. Which means over time they have been weakened (and sluggish). Yep. Yep. Yep. I have done stomach acid tests in the past and have failed miserably (i.e. I have very little) so this was not new but interesting that they came to the same conclusion by looking at it an entirely different way.

10) Liver and gallbladder congested/toxic/acidic - This part I absolutely did not fully comprehend. But I'm not surprised. I can't even pretend I understand what this meant? Next appointment I'll ask more questions. She wasn't even going to try dealing with this issue yet anyway.

11) Blocked Heart Chakra - This is where things got even more interesting, I was practically giddy at this point since, as I mentioned, I've recently become fascinated with the "spirit" part of the mind-body-spirit equation. I've been suspecting for some time that all my "shoulder and neck" problems are not really (at least not 100%) caused a physical problem but by some kind of emotional/energy block. I'm not one to dwell on the past so I just kept sweeping my suspicion under the rug. Its not a conscious thing, but sub-consciously something is obviously going on, something from the past that I need to deal with???

12) Red Blood Cells - my cells were all stuck together. Again, can't remember the explanation for this but they did ask "are your hands always cold". YES INDEED. It has been so bad lately that I really have trouble swimming with my kids even in indoor heated pools. I feel like such a wuss at times (and hate missing out on this fun activity) but I'm REALLY cold. Apparently my blood can't circulate properly.
13) Adrenals firing at 95% - Whoop. For someone that had SEVERE adrenal fatigue this is crazy good news. And interesting since I had just recently stopped taking my adrenal supplements. After being on them for most of the past 4 years and frankly being paranoid about missing one, I suddenly felt that I didn't need them anymore at the end of August.

Those are the biggies. There was all sorts of other stuff they mentioned - possible parasites, awesome cholesterol numbers, diet ideas for my body type, etc. We talked a lot about my lifestyle, my feelings, my faith - I laughed, I cried (a lot). Like I said, kind of overwhelming. A lot happened in three hours.

So what's next. What did I leave with.

Well, I left with a bunch of herbs of course. Some chinese herbs for my heart Chakra and anxiety issues, some protein enzymes and probiotics to help my digestion issues, some cat's claw for my immune system and Candida.

And a referral to an Energy healer. I'M TOO EXCITED for this.

And I'm going back in a month to figure out what happens next.

You may think this is all quackery. You may think this is all in my head. You may think I'm crazy for believing in this stuff. And that's okay. Your thoughts are not my problem. Sorry, but I've got enough of my own.

Normally, being the control freak that I am, I would want to understand every single thing they told me. Question, research, evaluate, decide if this is the right path for me.

But not this time. This time I'm just going for it. I don't understand it but I'm going to do what they say.

Stay tuned for my spirit post - and find out why - there is a reason!

Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Candida Killed my Summer............Now I must kill it

I've noticed a trend. I very infrequently blog anymore. But when I do, I seem to wait until the storm has passed and then summarize/comment/report on how much I'm feeling better. How I did it.

Not because I'm trying to brag or show how great of a problem solver I am. Simply because I usually have more energy at that point and when I'm in the storm I'm using all my reserves for full battle.

That's probably why my blog posts have become even more infrequent in 2015. There has been a lot of stormy weather.

So this time, I'm going to give you the honest goods. The honest not so pretty - the storm has not passed goods.

I have a severe systematic invasion of Candida overgrowth in my body. I'm pretty sure I've had a Candida issue my whole life. Its been barely controlled a few times when I got serious about cutting down on eating sugar which never seemed to last that long.

Cravings for sugar caused by Candida are brutal. I don't just "like sweets" - I literally feel like every cell in my body is screaming for them at times. Something I thought was just a personality trait of sorts - a lack of will at the least. Something I am/was embarrassed of. I often make a joke of it but its actually shameful to be hiding in the pantry eating chocolate chips hoping no one will notice (for the record kids can sniff out this behavior and will call you out on it each and every time - and they smell it on your breathe if they don't catch you red-handed). It consumes my thoughts.

I'm not going to go into the long list of symptoms I have had over the year. Its a long boring story and I'm tired of re-playing it in my mind. If you see me, you will likely question whether it is "all in my head". I "look" fine most of the time, I act fine most of the time. But I don't feel like myself. This is not who I am meant to be. I'm better than this. I'm shinier than this.

I was really confused about what was going on until recently. Symptoms of Candida overgrowth can be varied and inconsistent. I have had vastly differing symptoms over the year including a severe flare up of my IBS, and LOTs of other mental and physical manifestations. Lots of weird stuff going on.

This summer is the first time I think I started to actually feel defeated. I've been living "clean" for 3 years now. I could be the poster child for healthy living. I have structured my whole life around reducing stress (barring having three kids), eating well, sleeping and exercising. On paper, I've got this. In reality, its not working. Its incredibly frustrating. I don't know what else to "give up" and how much more money to spend on doctors and supplements.

In my frustration and tears, I finally told my new chiropractor about this situation last week. I don't always share my Candida issue with people I don't know well but with my chiropractic thermo scan results also showing something extremely odd going on in my body (a whole other story) I thought it was time to fess up.

She actually knew about Candida and was very open/understanding. Thank-you for not shaming me. I get enough of that from doctors. But she said "well, how did you get rid of it before?". I didn't really have an answer for her. Upon reflection, I  never did get rid of it. It got better at times, but I didn't get rid of it.

And one of my newer symptoms (although its been brewing for a few years) is severe mood swings. That's the part I can't handle. That I refuse to live with. I don't like that version of me.

So Candida killed my summer. A summer that had all the ingredients for perfection. It wasn't horrible by any means. I enjoyed many moments. But it wasn't what it should have been. I wasn't who I should have been.

So now I must kill it! I may have felt defeated at times. But I have another character trait -  steadfast determination - so I'm not giving up. Stay tuned. She isn't going to go down without a fight.

Prayers welcome!

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

B12, Probiotics and Yoga from a Tree.

Yoga from a tree. Check.
Hey Folks,
Its been a while. A long while since I've checked in.

For good reason.

This is the first day in months and months.........and months that I have felt like myself. Finally, hallelujah!

I've been just going through the motions. I'm not ill. I don't look bad (well not all the time). But I just haven't felt like myself. Sluggish some days. Moody others. Low energy. My digestion has been all over the place.

It started this winter with a bad (like really bad) flare up of IBS and what I think was one of my first "fibromyalgia" attacks. Or at least the first time I actually recognized it.

I hadn't changed anything in my diet to trigger it. I had been eating clean, exercising and had minimal stress so it was perplexing and extremely frustrating.

Thankfully, I stumbled across the FODMAP diet for IBS. It worked incredibly well and my digestion improved dramatically and pretty much immediately. Life. Changer.

But my immune system had taken a beating and I ended up with "ping-pong" strep throat in June and early July.  Twice within a month. It knocked the wind out of my sails. Plus I had to go on two very strong rounds on antibiotics. To say I was freaking out about that is a huge understatement. I had just gotten my stomach back on track. Arghhhhh.

That's the short story, Throw in a knee injury, an unexpected bathroom renovation, recurring ear infections for my 6 year old and 3 hour dance rehearsals twice a week. Something had to give. I was tired.

So my blog updates had to go.

But I'm back. For today.

If you are wondering how I got back on track and am back to feeling normal I'm hoping to do a proper post one day with the deets. One day when I feel more confident the new "old" me is here to stay.

But I think it might be from mega probiotics, getting my iron levels back into shape and getting back for routine B12 shots. I  B12!!!

I'm not looking for sympathy. Don't feel sorry for me. I know lots of people are going through much more difficult times than me. I'm just sharing because sometimes people need to hear ideas (Hello, did I mention the FODMAPS diet and B12 injections HAVE SAVED MY LIFE - or the quality of my life). And I'm pretty pumped to be feeling like myself again. And I'm okay with admitting I struggle sometimes. I'm not perfect. And I don't need to be.

In almost every way I live an amazingly blessed life. And even when I'm finding things hard and I'm not my shiny, positive, energetic best I still try and squeeze the best out of every day.

So even though I was in NO MOOD for my summer bucket list this year when I originally wrote it out, I went ahead and did one anyway, And I'm glad I did- I've even managed to get through a couple items.

Now I'm so excited to tackle the rest with a bit more bounce in my step.  I love summer!!! I love FODMAP's(I mean low FODMAPS - you know what I mean - actually you probably don't - google it)!I love B12. I love my aerial yoga hammock.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

Something to Munch on since I can't have apples..................FODMAPS Friendly Peanut butter cookie dough bites!

Hey Folks,

I had a rough winter with my digestive issues. It was very confusing (and even more frustrating) since I didn't know what more I could possibly do to heal my gut. My stress is low (other than having three kids which is a bit of a circus most days), I eat clean, I've cut out two of the four food groups recommended in the Canada Food Guide (dairy and grains). I'm super strict with my sleep schedule. I don't drink ANY alcohol. Ever. I don't drink any caffeine. Ever. Not even decaf. I take my supplements. 

ARGGGGHHHH. Its maddening.

Or it was. 

After hitting rock bottom on Easter weekend, I went "research crazy". And stumbled across "The Complete Low-Fat Diet" book. It is basically a diet for IBS sufferers. Its categorizes the different types of sugars (certain groups of which can be difficult to digest for people with IBS) and specifies which are high/low in FODMAP's. You basically need to eliminate the foods with high FODMAPS for a few weeks and then you are supposed to re-introduce/test them to see which ones you are sensitive to. 

Well, for the record: 
1) This diet is really restrictive, especially if you already know you are sensitive to grains, dairy, banana's, yeast and mushrooms. Now there is a whole slew of vegetables and fruits I'm also not "allowed" to eat. The most difficult ones to give up: onions, garlic, broccoli, cauliflower and apples. That last one is just cruel;
2) This diet WORKS. I was better within 2 days after months of upset (really upset) stomachs. 

This is not meant to be a long-term diet/lifestyle. But guess what. I'm too scared to go off of it. I enjoy not being sick. I've had a few things in small amounts (beans, garlic powder, onion powder) and I survived. But I'm still not ready to really test it. 

So in the meantime, I've been keeping these "balls" in my fridge as my snacking options are pretty limited. I make a batch every week. They are easy to whip up and help to keep my fingers out of the cookie jar.

If you are eating super healthy and still not feeling great, it might be worth looking into the low-FODMAP diet. There's definitely something to it!

Peanut Butter Cookie Dough Bites - Raw, Vegan & Grain Free

by MamaChanty
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: None
Keywords: raw dessert snack vegan grain free pumpkin coconut peanut butter
Ingredients (16-18)
  • 1/2 cup pure pumpkin puree
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup coconut flour
  • 1/4 cup finely shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 4 Tbsp natural peanut butter
  • 1/2 Tbsp cacao nibs (optional - for some crunch)
  • vegan chocolate chips - to taste
  • 1 Tbsp Truvia or sweetener of choice
  • dash fine sea salt
Just mix it all together. Roll it into balls (I make them 1 Tbsp each). Store in the fridge. And munch on one (or two or three) when you start looking in the fridge for a snack. Easy to make. Easy to eat.
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Wednesday, May 6, 2015

I'm back with some Experiments - Water Kefir + GF Sourdough Starter + Bananas = Perfection

Hey Folks,
I'm finally back with a recipe. I've actually been cooking, baking and fermenting up a storm. But I'm kinda out of the habit of documenting my kitchen adventures so many of my experiments have been lost, never documented, so never to be repeated. In some cases that's not a bad thing - there have been some epic fails as I learn how to make and use GF Sourdough starter. But there have been some real winners...this one I HAD to share.

This recipe is going to call for my two new loves - gluten-free sourdough starter and water kefir. I'm sure I'll lose some of you there (no worries - I wasn't familiar with either a few months ago). Unfortunately I haven't documented how I've made either of these. Yet. Sorry - that will have to be a future post but there is LOTS of good information out there so just do a goggle search and start experimenting yourself. That's what I did.

For those of you that already have a batch of GF sour dough starter going (or regular flour if you don't much care about being gluten free) this is great recipe to use up some of that extra starter.

All three of my kids LOVED this bread. I can't have banana's - sigh - but I was quite giddy about how much this bread rose and the texture. Weird things make me happy. After almost 3 years of GF baking this is by far the fluffiest bread I have made.

I did have a cheat. To make sure it was edible. It was. So then I had another cheat. I'm going to pay for that.

Just for the record, I'm introducing fermented foods into our diets to try to increase my intake of food based probiotics (my IBS was on a rampage this winter even with a probiotic supplement) and improve the digestibility of some foods. I've even re-introduced some gluten free grains since the fermentation process helps pre-digest them and so far, so good.

I'm experimenting with all kinds of things these days - FODMAPS diet, water kefir, raw potato starch, L-Glutamine, sour dough, fermented vegetables - so watch for some new recipes and updates on how much better I feel.............or how I overdid it and really buggered up my system. LOL. Hopefully its the former not the latter! Happy baking!

Vegan GF Sourdough Banana Bread

by MamaChanty
Prep Time: Varies
Cook Time: 1 hour
Keywords: bake dessert bread breakfast snack vegan gluten-free gluten-free flour oats banana sour dough starter
Ingredients (1 Loaf)
  • 1 cup Gluten Free Sourdough starter
  • 1/2 cup gluten free flour blend
  • 1/2 cup gluten free quick oats
  • 3 banana's mashed
  • 1/3 cup full fat coconut milk
  • 2 Tbsp grapeseed oil
  • 1/3 cup water kefir
  • 6 Tbsp organic coconut sugar or sweetener of choice
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • dash of fine sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 chia egg (4 Tbsp warm water with 1 Tbsp ground chia seeds)
  • Vegan chocolate chips (optional, amount as per preference - I did about 1/4 cup)
I just threw all the ingredients, with the exception of the chia egg and baking soda, into a mixing bowl. I used my hand mixer to mix until fully combined.
I then let it sit on the counter (covered with a tea towel) for about 6 - 8 hours. The batter rose significantly during that time.
I then preheated the oven to 350 degrees.
Immediately prior to putting it in the oven I made my chia egg and combined it with the baking soda.
I added the chia/baking soda mixture to the batter and folded it in taking care not to over-mix it.
I then put it in a greased loaf pan and baked it in the over for 1 hour.
Wait until completely cooled before attempting to slice. That's a hard wait but worth it. Enjoy!
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Monday, April 20, 2015

Getting into the Bubbly...............

Some of my "bubbly" experiments.
 Some water kefir and lacto-fermented vegetables.
Going to need more counter space.......

Nope. Not what you think. 

I still don't drink. Sorry Parkland ladies. Fun Bobby Chanty is still in hibernation.

But I have been making my own bubbly...........WATER KEFIR.

Completely addicted. In love. Enamored. 

Haven't had this much fun in the kitchen since I discovered Chia seeds.  Look it how it bubbles........I made fun!!!

Most of you don't know what the hell I'm talking about. Don't feel bad - my spell check doesn't even recognize the word. Well, here is the official definition:

  1. Water Kefir (pronounced keh-FEER) is not as well known as milk kefir. But it is the same concept - symbiotic grains of bacteria and yeast that ferment a specific liquid - in this case, a sugar-water-fruit liquid. It produces a mild, light and refreshing, slightly carbonated beverage.

Basically, you feed sugar water to "water kefir grains" and it turns it into a slightly sweet, mildly carbonated beverage that is FULL OF PRO-BIOTICS. You drain off the fermented kefir water after 24 - 48 hours (drink it or use it for a second ferment), add more sugar water to the grains and you just keep going. You can flavor/feed it with different fruits, dried fruits, extracts, etc. Dozens of flavor combinations. 

I got me some water kefir grains from a trusted local source. Kijiji, of course. She is actually a legit business person with a pretty robust website so it's all good. Hubby was pretty skeptical. I was pretty desperate to get my hands on some.

Why the desperation you ask? 

Well, two things really:

1) I had been experiencing a pretty bad IBS-c flare up over the winter. Unfortunately, it escalated over the Easter weekend into a full fledged fibromyalgia attack/food flu/severe sickness. Call it what you like. It was bad enough that I had been dealing with severe digestive upset but then I got slammed with full body aches and pains, severe brain fog and extreme fatigue. No - it wasn't the flu. And it happened more than once this winter. Frankly it scared the shit out of me. I know digestive issues are just the first step down the slippery slope to auto-immune disease........and;

2) I got some blood work back for all three of my rug rats. All three have "nutritional deficiencies". Various states of low iron and B12, among some other unusual things. I know their guts aren't working properly. We also went through some dietary changes with our 2 year old over the winter after he started behaving like a raging lunatic most of the time. Plus he was having weird facial rashes. We stopped feeding him eggs and, go figure, he's really only a lunatic some of the time. But I suspect the fact that we were feeding him a diet of almost exclusively eggs (dumb in hindsight - I know) has done some serious damage to his system. 

Needless to say, I believe that we all need some gut healing to take place.  Things just aren't quite working properly for any of us - even on a gluten (grain for me) and dairy free diet. A low sugar diet made up primarily of whole foods. 

How can I be working this hard at it and still not seeing results? Grrrr. Frustrating.

Had a small pity party and then got serious about figuring this shit (no pun intended) out.  

I took out a small truckload of books from the library (only a couple shown - Thank you City of Winnipeg), spent many, many (many) hours scouring the internet and am in the process of coming up with a new game plan.  A plan that includes lots of cultured/fermented foods full of natural probiotics.  A game plan that requires me to learn how to make lots of cultured/fermented foods full of natural probiotics. 

It is so easy to order (hold) books from the library. They also have lots of digital version available if that's your thing. What a great way to do some research!

Bring. It. On. I'm jazzed. Pumped. Can't wait to tackle this next kitchen adventure. Fuck you IBS. You're not going to win. Sorry - I rarely swear but I'm fired up.

So expect to see some new recipes and experiments coming your way!

And for the record. I'm currently trying the FODMAP diet that is specifically for IBS sufferers. It calmed my stomach down pretty much immediately (about 2 days after starting it). Just throwing out there if someone else is confused on what to do next. I don't think it's a long-term solution but its giving me the relief I need to get feeling good enough to tackle this next chapter of my gut healing journey.

Stay tuned. 

Friday, March 20, 2015

My experiments at the Gym - Focusing on Gaining Muscle not Losing Weight

Hello Everyone,
Sorry I have sort of disappeared for a while. We have just been very active with hockey, dance, swim..........And I have been on a bit of a spring cleaning binge. So I rarely get to the computer and I haven't been doing much experimenting in the kitchen with recipes.

Instead I have been experimenting in the gym. I'm on a bit of a roll with my work-outs. I'm up to about 5 work-outs a week, and sometimes I actually have to force myself to take a rest day because I know I need them but I don't really wanna.

I'm not saying this to brag. Exercising is just a habit. When you're out of the habit - its brutal and it sucks. When you're in the habit - its pretty easy. I'm in the habit today. Friday March 20th, 2015. Life could throw me a curve ball any day and that might no longer be possible so I'm just enjoying it.

I feel really fit and energetic. I feel good. I'm a slave to my grain and dairy-free diet, sleep rules, hormones and supplements but generally I feel really good so its worth it.

But. There's always a butt (a slightly jiggly one as the case may be).

Even with working out 5 days a week and eating my grain-free, dairy-free, low sugar diet I started gaining some weight. Not lots of weight. Just five pounds in all the wrong places so my clothes were starting to feel tight and things were starting to look mighty jiggly.

I'm not looking for sympathy. This may annoy the hell out of people who need/want to lose a lot of weight but I'm just telling my story so chill. And keep in mind that I had already gained 15 pounds (in about 6 months) post breast-feeding so I'm not trying to be super skinny - just the right weight for me. The weight where I feel best without depriving myself.

I wasn't freaking out or anything. I have a pretty comfortable relationship with my body. Its not perfect but I'm pretty impressed with all the crazy shit it can still do. Make babies. Do headstands. Dance like its nobodies business.

But I did decide it was time to look at what I was doing and how it was possible that I was gaining weight (and no, it wasn't all muscle) when I'm the picture of a clean-eating fitness princess from the outside looking in.

Well, I have a few secrets.

1) My "low-sugar" diet isn't always that low sugar. I have a sweet tooth that won't quit. I don't eat "unrefined white sugar", but let me tell you, there are lots of ways to let sugar sneak its way back into your life disguised as clean-eating. Paleo pancakes with syrup anyone. Grapes (did you know they are addicting). Dark Chocolate (my nemesis - sorry for saying that - I really do love you chocolate);
2) I have a huge appetite. Huge. Always. Hungry. Plus I love food. My husband is almost twice my size and most days I eat more than him. Enough said. I eat a lot of calories in a day. Everyday. Lots. You would probably be shocked, maybe disgusted, if  you spent an entire day with me;
3) I hate cardio. Hate it. Actually not a secret. I was bragging about my new-found love of yoga and hatred for running a while back. Well, I was getting to the point where I was almost exclusively doing yoga and no cardio or weight training;
4) When you give up grains its hard to find snacks. So I was eating a shit-load of nuts. Fatty. delicious. High calorie nuts.

Well, after lots of reading and a hard look at my diet and exercise plan I realized that obviously doing yoga 5 days a week was making me super stretchy and I was learning lots of neat tricks...........but my line-backer diet and lack of cardio and weights was not giving me the body I wanted. Yeah, I looked fine. But I didn't want to replace my entire wardrobe for 5 pounds. And I like to train with a goal.

So after all my reading (really love the Eat to Perform Facebook page and articles) what did I conclude:

1) Although its okay to eat lots of calories (its actually really bad to under-eat if you are active) - my diet was a little too heavy on calories from sugar and fat and not enough from protein.............and I CAN'T BELIEVE I'm saying this but not enough carbohydrates.  I wasn't feeding my workouts with carbs for energy or protein so that I could actually maintain/build muscle;
2) I didn't/don't need to lose weight. I just want to lose some fat and gain some muscle;
3) Muscle burns lots of calories (and looks damn hot) so if I'm going to eat like a 250 pound football player I'd sure as hell better build some muscle to torch some of those calories;
4) You will only build muscle by lifting heavy things while feeding your body the right macro-nutrients and calories; and
5) Its okay to hate cardio. Its not a necessity.

Enter the "8-week challenge". I'm on week three. And I feel great. Here is what I decided to do for eight weeks:

1) Don't worry about restricting calories but get lots of protein at the right times.  I don't track my food (tried for a day - too much bloody work) but just try to a) get some carbs before a work-out for energy and enough protein after a work-out for muscle recovery, and b) get enough protein throughout the day (I have a rough idea of what it should be but I don't track it or over-think it - I just make sure I have protein with each meal and snack);
2) Cut out sugar (pretty much, almost). Now I can say I'm on a low sugar diet. Not no-sugar. Just low-sugar. Wow. Do I ever feel better. Energy levels are WAY more stable. Moods are better. but for the record, the CRAVINGS DO NOT GO AWAY. Yes - they are less intense. But they are still there;
3) Take it easy on the nuts. Eat them, just don't go nuts on them. LOL.
4) Lift HEAVY weights twice a week;
5) Do high intensity intervals (with or without weights) at least once per week.

So this is what I'm experimenting with. I'm in week three and my clothes feel loser around the waist. Yay - I hated that feeling of flab spilling over the top of my jeans.  I'm never hungry, well, I'm always hungry but I'm never hungrier than usual. I'm already starting to feel stronger - I'm lifting heavier weights all the time- its actually pretty fun.

And this morning my girls were looking at my scrawny arms and said "Mommy you don't have much muscle". Point taken - I have long spindly arms. So naturally, I pulled off my shirt and flexed my back for them. Their eyes went big and one of them said "You look like a man". LOL. I think its working.

So that's my update. I'll let you know how my experiment this the end of my love affair with yoga? Can you eat a shit-load of food and still lose fat if you focus on gaining muscle? Can you really forgo steady state cardio and look your best?

I guess only time (and willpower) will tell.

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Why I had to give up Coffee........and Decaf..............and Dandy Blend. Sigh.

The answer to my coffee-free existence. Maybe not.

There is nothing better than that first taste, sip, gulp of coffee in the morning.

That is unless it causes severe insomnia (which over time results in moodiness, weight gain, frustration and exhaustion - to name a few things).

Good thing there is decaffeinated coffee for us poor souls.

Nope. Actually, that's not the answer. Even decaffeinated coffee F's up my sleep.  Seriously. I know some people reading this think I'm crazy or its all in my head. Its not. I started drinking decaf again in November. OH DID I ENJOY IT. But after not having one proper sleep in two months I had to look really hard at what had changed. I tried to blame the stress of Christmas (it really was a crazy December) and work and general busy-ness. But no. It was the darn decaf.

I knew it. Deep down I knew it. But I kept putting it off. Looking for other excuses. I wanted to keep drinking it so bad.

But I finally admitted to myself that I can't even handle decaf. BIG. HUGE. SIGH.

I really am a delicate creature. A delicate creature that started sleeping again in the New "coffee and decaf free" year.

But I wasn't ready to give up my morning shot of happiness. So I went on a hunt for an alternative. I scoured the Internet and found Dandy Blend. Yay - they sell it in Winnipeg (at Hollow Reed on Corydon). My prayers had been answered.

Daddy blend is a mix of dandelion, chicory and beet roots, and barley and rye grains - are all health-promoting foods respected throughout the world. Its full of minerals, tastes great, gluten-free, etc. etc. etc. You get the picture - this stuff is the bomb.  I couldn't find one issue with it (and I read a million reviews). All the granola cruncher, health-food junkies are loving this stuff.

And WOW was I loving this stuff. I was making myself amazing "lattes" with cinnamon, stevia, vanilla and almond milk. Life was good.

Except, there was trouble in paradise.

I was noticing that I was feeling pretty bloated. After a couple days I tried blaming it on my diet.......had to be something I ate. I wasn't about to give up my beloved lattes........again.

But after a week, my stomach was actually sticking out so far I looked about 4 months pregnant. And I was EXTREMELY uncomfortable.

Again, I did a check-in and had a long talk with myself.

Time to face facts Mama C - Dandy Blend does not agree with you. It seems to agree with EVERY OTHER bloody person that tries it. But not me.

I'm pretty sure its the chicory root (I've reacted to it before).

So I've gone back to water and herbal teas. And I'm surviving. After a week of withdrawal I no longer stand over my husbands coffee doing deep breathing to try and soak up the sunshine.

Some people think my dietary troubles are all in my head. Some people probably think I have orthorexia (an unhealthy obsession with healthy food). But I have to live in this body. And if giving up coffee and decaf and bloody Dandy Blend makes me feel better then that is what I'll do. And trust me, if I have an unhealthy obsession with anything its good tasting food. So I wouldn't be giving up anything if I didn't have to. 

So if we go out for dinner and I just drink water and eat a seemingly boring and healthy meal, don't be annoyed. I'm not doing it to make you feel bad about your food and beverage choices. I'm doing it so I can feel my best - and that isn't as easy for us delicate-digestive-challenged flowers.


Monday, January 26, 2015

Magic Pina Colada Tofu Slice - Raw, Vegan and Grain Free

I sprinkled some candied coconut on top. Oh. Yeah!

I had to put "magic" in the name of this recipe because I am still amazed by how tofu can be made to replace "cheese" in recipes. And its super low calorie (if you care). Before I had to give up dairy, cheesecake was one of my all-time favorite desserts. So I missed cheesecake. And I wanted a Pina Colada slice at Christmas-time. I had originally also given up soy. But I find that I can handle it in moderation and I stick with the organic, Non-GMO variety. For this dessert you need to buy the Silken tofu (I used firm which they were selling at Costco - not sure if its still there but you can get it at any grocery store). 

Anyway, I got my Pina Colada slice. Did. I. Ever. I made it three times in December. 

This recipe is super simple. The hardest part is letting it sit in the fridge for long enough to completely cool and set. And its actually got a fair bit of it makes a pretty good afternoon snack too. I think you could easily convince yourself to eat it for breakfast. Not that I would ever do that;)

Pina Colada Slice - Raw Vegan and Grain free Pineapple tofu Magic

by MamaChanty
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 0
Keywords: raw dessert candida-diet friendly low-carb vegan gluten-free coconut silkken tofu pineapple
Ingredients (8 x 8 pan)
    • 1 Tbsp Truvia or sweetener of choice
    • 1/4 cup oil (I actually used 2 Tbsp coconut oil and 2 Tbsp Earth Balance)
    • 3/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (ground in coffee grinder)
    • 1/4 cup almond flour (or almond meal)
    • 2 Tbsp ground golden flax
    • 2 Tbsp arrowroot starch
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    • pinch fine sea salt
    "Cheesecake" Layer
    • 1 package firm Silken tofu
    • 1/2 cup full fat coconut milk
    • 2 Tbsp honey
    • 1 Tbsp Truvia or sweetener of choice
    • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
    • 1 tin (14 oz) crushed pineapple, in juice
    • 2 Tbsp organic gelatin
    • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
    To make the base, combine all ingredients together. Mix until fully blended. Pack down into an 8 x 8 pan. I use a piece of parchment and the palm of my hand to pack it down rather than trying to do it with a spoon.
    For the creamy layer/topping. Blend the Silken tofu first until it is creamy and smooth.
    Drain the juice from the crushed pineapple into a saucepan. Heat the juice over medium heat until just boiling. Turn off heat. Sprinkle with gelatin and let sit for one minute. Use a whisk and vigorously whisk the mixture until all the gelatin has dissolved. Add tofu, coconut, honey, Truvia, and drained crushed pineapple. Thoroughly mix together.
    Pour the creamy topping onto the base.
    Refrigerate overnight or for at least 8 hours before serving to ensure it is fully set. That's the tough part.
    Keep refrigerated until serving.
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    Friday, January 9, 2015

    FItness Friday - Fun for the Whole Family

    She is obsessed with going this one now..........................
    Some of you might know that I'm going through a bit of a YOGA phase. Addicted.

    I have an intense personality. And I constantly need new interests and challenges.

    So although I am LOVING yoga so much that I wanna swear this is it. I found my exercise soul-mate. I'm done searching. This. Is. It.

    I really don't know. I kind of felt that way about Zumba two years ago. And then biking. And then HIIT. And now yoga. But damn do I love it. Really really love it.

    I guess the point is that you need to keep searching for things you love doing to keep exercise a mainstay in your life. Don't try to force yourself to do something you no longer enjoy. Don't feel bad when you walk away from an activity. As long as you are walking towards something else. And there are so many things out there to try. Oh - if only I had more time.

    Although I am LOVING my yoga classes (I do all kinds from restorative/gentle to Ashtanga/Vinyasa Flow/Power), I guess I started to get a bit itchy to try something new.

    So yesterday I went completely out of my comfort zone and dropped in for an AcroYoga class.............OH. WHAT. FUN. Taking turns flying and being flown in the air by complete strangers. What an experience. Bucket list - check!

    And tonight the kids and I did AcroYoga all night. Now my 5-year-old is completely addicted too. Her last words before bedtime were "Please mama, one more yoga".

    So I'm challenging all of you, if you are bored with your usual routine or just don't have a routine, go find something fun to do.

    I need someone to do this with me............hubby is athletically gifted by flexibility challenged. 
    Now I have a partner to help me work on my scorpion. Much better company than the wall.

    A family affair. Still need to figure out how the little one can get involved in this pose. So far he just likes to stomp or sit on my face.