Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Preparing for Guests Tonight

I hate to admit it (because I miss all the foods I used to eat), but I have been feeling really good on this diet. I've been on it for a week with no cheating (even though I've made several batches of cookies for different events!), and I've lost 4 pounds. Hubby and I are looking into getting some home exercise equipment.

Breastfeeding is still going fine; eliminating grains and starches and fruits has not affected my milk supply. I only have one more week to go, and then I can start slowly adding those things back in.

I have been busy today getting things ready for friends to come over tonight. The house was already pretty clean, since we had prayer meeting here last night, but there are always things to do in the kitchen, of course. Our menu tonight is roast beef, fresh bread, green salad, and oatmeal-raisin cookies for dessert. I won't be eating the bread or cookies.

Friday, June 22, 2007

South Beach Diet

So I decided to try the South Beach diet, since it embodies most of the principles I was thinking about trying I just have a title for what I'm doing. :-) I had heard mostly good things about the South Beach Diet for a couple of years but never looked into it until this point because I figured, with a trendy name like "South Beach Diet," it must be some unhealthy fad diet. But I read the book, and it seems to make sense.

There are three phases of the South Beach Diet...I am starting with phase one, which eliminates grains/starches, fruits, and pretty much all sugars (lactose in dairy products is considered okay) for two weeks. I have read in several places that a nursing mom really shouldn't do phase one, and instead go directly to stage two, but I think that is probably for lactating mothers of young infants. Baby Boy is almost ten months old and is getting a lot of his nutrition from solid foods at this point. Plus, I am eating lots of protein and plenty of calories, so I don't think my milk will dry up.

I don't miss bread at all. I do miss my morning bowl of oatmeal, and I miss fruit. But I know the deprivation is only for two weeks, and then I can start adding things back in. I have been following the diet for a couple of days, and I feel really good. I am realizing that grains might have a tendency to produce bloating and gas in me (I know it would probably help if I diligently soaked my grains as a good Nourishing Traditions devotee should), because I have had a marked decrease in these annoyances since I stopped eating grains. I am feeling less sluggish, and I have had a lot of energy. I think my stomach has gotten a little flatter.

Updated to add: Oh, yeah, another thing that has motivated me to change my eating habits is an episode I had about two weeks ago. I woke up in the middle of the night with terrible, horrible stomach cramps. I mean, they were so bad, they woke me up out of a deep sleep. It felt like I was in labor, except the pain was steady instead of coming in waves, like contractions. I honestly thought I must be pregnant without knowing it and was having a miscarriage. But after about fifteen minutes of me moaning and crying and writhing, the pain subsided, and I was able to drift back to sleep. In the morning, I was absolutely fine. I figured out that I wasn't pregnant, so to this day, I don't know if it was just bad menstrual cramps or related to something I ate, but man, I don't want to experience that again.

Monday, June 18, 2007


Today I did a lot of tidying-up around the house, which is fortunate because I found out in the late afternoon that some relatives are coming to visit tomorrow morning!

I took Stephanie's advice in the comments of my last post and the only carb I had today, other than lots of veggies and some raisins for a snack, was brown rice for dinner. I am also avoiding junk food and trying to eat smaller portions.

For the past month or so, I have been taking a nap every afternoon while Baby Boy takes his second nap, but all the housework wasn't getting done. Today I stayed up and worked, and lo and behold, the house is clean tonight. The reason I've been needing to take naps is that I haven't been getting enough sleep at night, so I'm going to try not taking naps and just going to bed earlier. I love getting enough sleep, but it's always so tempting to stay up and read or dink around on the internet. But I am seeing that I need to be more disciplined in a lot of areas of my life, and sleep is one of them.

The house is clean, but bare. We have more wall space in this apartment than in our last one, so now I need to come up with some pretty yet inexpensive ways to decorate. We still (after 2 1/2 years!) haven't gotten enlargements made of any of our wedding photos, but once we do, I'd love to have some of them on the walls. I grew up in a house with pictures all down the hallway, so now that I live in a place with a hallway, I see it as just begging for pictures.

Well, I have a little free time tonight, so I'm going to do some reading and then go to bed early.

Saturday, June 16, 2007

Long, rambling post about weight

I cannot believe how much my child eats....and no matter how much I give him, he almost always wants more. He has six teeth and is able to feed himself finger foods pretty well. His favorites are sticks of bananas and cooked yams and thin slices of cheddar cheese. Today I gave him little blobs of homemade hummus on his tray. I also give him strips of homemade waffles and homemade graham crackers (softer and thicker than store-bought graham crackers). I am glad he is enjoying food and gaining weight.

I, on the other hand, need to go the opposite direction on the scale. Recently I found Blest With Sons' ten-month pictorial weight-loss chronicle. She lost 78 pounds! I am so impressed...and inspired. I try to eat pretty healthy, but I know I could do better, and my only official exercise is a daily walk. For the first few months after Baby Boy was born, I steadily dropped some pounds, but I've totally plateaued for the past, oh, five months at a number much higher than I wish it were. Maybe someday I'll get brave enough to post my actual weight here for accountability, when I finally decide to get serious and lose thirty pounds. I still haven't figured out why I gained over sixty pounds when I was pregnant. Waaaaah. My body will never be the same again. Okay, I'm pulling myself together now. :-)

My main reason for delaying getting serious about losing weight is that I am still breastfeeding, and I'm worried that my milk will dry up if I exercise a lot and change my eating habits. But I really want to get down to a reasonable weight before getting pregnant again (and gain not more than thirty pounds during pregnancy next time around). So now I'm torn between wanting to nurse my baby as long as he wants and needs (I've always thought I would breastfeed for at least eighteen months) and losing weight. I am pretty sure (at least I'm hoping) that my body is "holding on" to five or ten pounds while I am lactating. I've talked to lots of women who say that was the case for them. So maybe when I stop breastfeeding, at least a few pounds will come off relatively effortlessly.

My husband is so sweet; I truly believe that he thinks I am beautiful no matter what I look like, but I need to lose weight for me. I want to be healthier and have more energy; I want to feel pretty and not frumpy. I want clothes to fit me again.

But to be completely transparent, I'm afraid to start trying to lose weight in case it doesn't "work," and then I'd be so disappointed.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Warning--Girly Post

In the past year of so, I've become aware of a lot of problems with tampons (dioxin, fibers scratching the vagina, toxic shock syndrome, environmental pollution, etc.), and to a lesser degree, with disposable pads. In my mid-teens, I stopped using disposable pads because they gave me a rash and were very uncomfortable to me, and I switched to tampons. Well, I have been looking for a more natural alternative to tampons. At first, I tried the Diva Cup, but so far I have not been satisfied with it and I am thinking of returning it. I trimmed the stem some, but it still pokes me, and I always feel the cup inside me. I really want it to work, but I am not as motivated to keep trying, now that I have...reusable cloth pads. I ordered some from New Moon Pads. They are very soft--way more comfortable than scratchy disposable pads--and they are not bulky. In fact, when I got them, I was amazed at how thin they are. The pads have a fleece layer to prevent leak-through (it works!). They are super-easy to care for. I don't find it "gross" to wash pads. Menstrual blood is not any more "dirty" than when you cut your finger and it bleeds.
When you use reusable menstrual products, you are keeping chemicals away from your body and you are not filling up landfills. And reusable cloth pads are very economical. For example, I got 3 pantiliners, 2 light pads, 4 regular pads, and an overnight pad for $39. You can wash and re-use them indefinitely (at least 10 years, probably longer). So once you get your initial "stock," you are good to go for a long time. No more laying down $5 for disposable products every 28 days! From New Moon Pads' info page:

"DID YOU KNOW? On average, one New Moon Pad costs approximately the same as one cycles worth of disposable products. Approximately 12-18 cloth pads are needed to get through one cycle (depending on how often you launder). That means New Moon Pads pay for themselves after just
1 to 1.5 years. PAD LIFE EXPECTANCY 10 years SAVINGS (you ready for this?) 8.5 to 9 years of no cost coverage! ...and that's just the financial savings...there's the health/comfort factor and environmental savings to consider as well."

By the way, you can find other frugal tips over at Biblical Womanhood.

Edited to add: Oh, and one more thing--the bigger reusable pads have extra layers and are great for postpartum bleeding. I think they would be so much nicer on tender just-pushed-out-a-baby parts than disposable pads.


Yesterday I received in the mail a stroller rain cover I purchased on Ebay, and today I got to try it out! It is a Protect-a-Bub cover, and it works great, except for the fact that Baby Boy loves to kick it and chew on the clear vinyl "window." But at least it keeps the rain off.

We went to the park, and I let Baby Boy go in the swing, even though it was sprinkling. Recently I read a quote I like--I think in a book about Montessori learning. It is: "There's no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing." I don't know if I'll ever get around to it, but I would love to cross-stitch that saying along with pictures of kids playing in rain or snow.

Well, I may or may not be going to Hubby's company BBQ tonight (it will be canceled if it is raining), but I am supposed to bring a fruit salad and a dessert. For the dessert, I think I'm just going to make oatmeal chocolate chip cookies; if we don't end up going to the BBQ, I can just bring them to church on Sunday.

Baby Boy has become such a good sleeper lately (finally)! He takes two naps every day, usually from around 9:15-10:30/10:45, and from around 1:15-3:30/3:45. He goes to bed between 6:30 and 7:00, and sleeps straight through until around 5:30 A.M. We let him babble and play in his crib until 6:00, and then we get him up. I wonder if he will always be such an early riser. It suits our family, though, since Hubby usually leaves for work around 6:30 A.M. Since Baby Boy gets up early, Hubby is able to spend a few minutes with him before he leaves for work.