I recently accepted a challenge from a homeschool mom friend, Amber at Adventures In Mindful Cooking, to write about 3 things I would like to change in my life for the next 30 days. Amber is a sweet mom with 3 kids and writes about recipes she is enjoying with her family, encouragement in motherhood, and homeschooling. She is re-gaining her strength through changing her diet and habits. She shares her story and many of the recipes she is enjoying on her website. Be sure to stop in and read more about Amber when you get time.
Change 3 Challenge
For the next 30 days I will be posting at least once a week with updates on 3 goals I am working on. I actually started the challenge this past week so I could concentrate on what was really important to me, and would be able to write my progress about it. I had a hard time choosing only three goals, as I have a list of things I am working on that is a least a mile long. But I have tried to narrow it down and I have listed my goals, my plans to reach those goals, and what progress I made toward reaching those goals this past week.
My goals in the Change 3 Challenge are:
Goal #1: Read my bible daily, and if possible first thing in the morning. I would like to start each and every day with scripture, songs of praise, and prayer.
Goal #2: Drink more water. I want to hydrate my body with water and flush out toxins.
Goal #3: Play a game or some physical activity outside for a few minutes everyday with my kids.
Why these 3 goals? Well it was a hard decision to make. I have so many goals, it was really hard to choose only 3. But out of all of them, these 3 are the most important to me and will bring me the greatest satisfaction if I can master them in the next month.
Why Goal #1: I want to be sure to read my bible everyday and study scripture and commit to prayer because this will set my focus for the day. It will give me time with my creator. It will fill my need to commune with God, It will keep me focused on being thankful and giving praise, instead of focussing on problems, stress, or worrying about what my life is lacking.
Why Goal #2: I want to drink more liquid and especially more water because I am consistently dehydrated. I don’t drink enough. It is not healthy to be dehydrated. Getting enough water will help lower my PH level. It will keep the detox highway moving so to speak in flushing out toxins.
Why Goal #3: I want to play a game everyday because games are fun, they bring laughter into one’s life, they lift the countenance. Games build team work amongst the players and provide a healthy outlet for friendly competition.. I want to play games with my children because children need the positive interaction with an adult. They need one on one time. They need to be appreciated. I want to include one outside game a day to build our relationships, and our bodies. Fresh air is healthy and movement combined with fresh air helps to oxygenate the body. Running and playing outdoors builds skills, stamina, Vit. D, boosts the immunity. Winter is headed our way and we many not have many chances for outdoor fun during the winter months. So now is the time to get this done!
My plans to reach my goals include:
Plans for Goal #1: Get up, shower, dress, make something to drink, and set out the bible every day to read either alone, or with the kids. Make a prayer journal and write down scriptures, and things to pray about, and answered prayers too. Include prayers each day for my husband and each one of my children. Sing a new song of praise to God from my heart each day.
Plans for Goal #2: Make large jars of water or beverages for each day the night before or first thing in the morning. Sip through out the day. It is weird because I have known to do this since I met the Amish bishop’s wife 15 years ago. She told me she fixes two half gallon jars of water, or water with herbal extracts (like raspberry leaf extract), or tea (either tea or tea extract), in the morning and sips on them all day long. I just never put this idea into practice. Now I read the same advice everywhere, including in a new book I am reading called the Trim Healthy Mama. So my plan is to take 4 quart jars and fill them first thing in the morning and begin sipping on them for the day. At least one jar I want to include some fresh lemon juice in the water too. I want to make up an additional jar or two of other beverages too and be sure to consume all of this each day. I am going to need a separate refrigerator just to hold my beverages, hummmmmmm…..something to think about.
Plans for Goal #3: Have a list of games and supplies ready to play each week. Place the names of games in a jar and have the kids pull one out each day to play. Ideas: kickball, jumping race, jump rope, hop scotch, catch, baseball, capture the flag, hide and seek, tag, freeze tag, musical chairs, dancing, bike ride, frisbee, frisbee golf, yard darts, ladder ball, corn hole, volleyball, parachute, make tents and a campfire, and more. Some of the outdoor learning and games we have done in the past, I have posted in PE and Outdoor Learning, and Walk and Talk Wednesday posts.
Progress on Goal #1: This is the hardest one for me to get it the way I want it. I get up, get breakfast for the kids, make my self something to drink, start homeschool with the kids, but don’t always get to read my bible until later in the day. This week really helped me narrow down the reasons why. One reason is because I don’t get up until 6:30 or 7 am. At least 3 or 4 of the kids are already waking up at that time. That does not leave enough time for me to read the bible before we start our day, so I find myself reading the bible at 10am or later. I don’t mind including the kids in my bible study, as a matter of fact, I want to include them in bible study every day. But I would like to have a few minutes of study alone, to collect my thoughts, and meditate on the word. It is impossible to meditate on anything with 6 kids bouncing all around. So, I need to get up earlier, despite my desire to sleep in longer.
Progress on Goal #2: Didn’t reach it.&nbs
p; I have never liked the taste of water. Why? I don’t know. I have tried, and tried. I always revert back to my old ways of not drinking enough. I did make progress to drink more liquid this week. But not enough water.
I make several beverages each week, despite my interest in water. I have learned to sweeten them with stevia and or chickory sweetener, but in the past I sweetened with maple syrup, sucanat, or raw honey. I have been exploring natural alternative sweeteners this summer and I am pleased with the taste of NuNaturals Pure Stevia and Just Like Sugar brand chickory sweetener. Both are delicious and do not spike the blood sugar.
One drink I am making a lot of lately is called the Shrinker from the Trim Healthy Mama program. It is an iced tea drink that has a few “extras” added in to help you loose weight while you hydrate. Their recipe is to consume two quarts a day. I have adapted it, OF COURSE, and call my version the Dragon Shrinker. I have added a lot of extra spices and increased the healthy aspect of the tea and it tastes just like a Chai tea I used to drink with friends in college over 20 years ago. I drink only one quart or 32 oz a day. I hope to share the recipe with you soon. I’ve posted a picture below for you to see.
I am also drinking an 8 oz Bulletproof coffee (coffee blended with butter and coconut oil) that really sustains me for several hours.
On off days from the coffee, I drink a protein drink.
Then everyday I drink a 16oz glass of either Kombucha or Kombucha and juice blend, or a KeVita and juice blend. I drink this to get in both some probiotics, enzymes, and nutrients. Nutrition gets into the blood stream much quicker when it is in liquid form. So I try to include at least one juice drink a day. Below is a picture of the peach drink I made several times in September using organic peaches from my own tree in the background. This was a wonderful treat while the peaches were ready to be harvested. They are finished now, and I will be making it with other flavors until next year when they are ripe for harvest again. The second picture is one made with KeVita and carrot and apple juice.
Lastly, but not my favorite, I also drink 24 to 32 oz of water. I know, it is not enough water.
So currently on an average day, I am consuming around 80 oz to 104 oz of fluids. But seriously, I want to consume at least a gallon (128 oz) of water, and a half half gallon (64 oz) or more of other beverages. So my daily fluid goal is 190 oz or more. My current intake on an average day is about 104 oz of combined liquid. 190 – 104 = 86 oz . So I have a ways to go (at least an additional 86 oz) to reach my goal.
Progress on Goal #3: I only managed to work on physically playing outside with the kids three out of seven days this week. I did have bible study and feed them lunch outside 5 out of seven days that the weather was nice. The kids managed to go out and play all seven days, they don’t mind the rain one bit. But I was not so diligent. On Sunday afternoon we walked around Metamora IN for a couple of hours and rode the train (see upcoming story for details). On another afternoon this week I played tag for about 20 minutes. And another afternoon I went for a short walk and played catch with a big ball with the kids. Two days I lost my motivation because it rained. The other two days, I just didn’t feel like going out. I have a ways to go to making this a daily priority and I am running out of time. The weather has changed here and it is really showing signs of fall now. Mornings and evenings are chilly. Some afternoons are warm, and some are chilly, and off and on we have rain. I really want to reach this goal this month, because I know soon enough, the weather here will get so cold, I won’t want to go outside, so NOW is the time to make this happen before I loose my opportunity.
My Additional Goal List:
To be honest…I have way more than 3 things I want to change this month, and my list grows and grows every month. It was so hard when Amber asked me to choose three things to work on to make my life better in the next month, because I have so many goals that I am continually working on, that even though they are all great goals, it is overwhelming sometimes.
Here are just a few of my additional goals I have been working on the past couple of months and will continue on through the end of the year:
*I want to get to bed earlier and get up earlier. This is so hard for me to do! I am a night owl. I prefer to get my work done when the kids go to bed for the night. But sometimes this means going to bed too late when I am really involved in a project. Sometimes I don’t make it to bed until 12 or later. This is not a very healthy routine as it upsets the body’s natural rhythm. I want to have a set time each night to be to bed no later than 11:00 for example. It is a work in progress, lol.
*Use facebook and other social media less each day, perhaps 30 minutes max and value my time with my family and my hobbies more.
*I want to write my blog stories for 2 hours a day five days a week, and take weekends off. I want to be able to be able to write about family adventures, homeschool, and complete my product reviews all within this window of time. I need to learn to type faster I think! I currently find that if I miss even one day, I easily get behind. It takes a lot of time to write stories. But I hope to keep publishing about three a week, and be able to keep it in balance with my family and my own interests too.
*I want to make home remedies and have them ready in my medicine cabinet or freezer if needed. Remedies like: elderberry extract, elderberry syrup, and elderberry variations, garlic extract, garlic oil, apple cider vinegar, 50 garlic soup or the modified version, and more.
*I want to make my own homemade “safe” hous
e cleaning and laundry products.
*I want to do some fall cleaning (spring cleaning in the fall).
*Prep the garden for winter. I would like to get all the old plants pulled out and composted. I also want to disc the ground and sow winter rye or alfalfa that I can till under come spring for green manure and enrich the ground with all those extra organic nutrients.
*I want to harvest the walnuts that will soon be dropping all around and make fresh walnut oil, and sprout and freeze the nutmeats for use in snacks and deserts. I hope to post a lot of recipes using walnuts later this fall if I can get this goal reached.
*I want to make every meal from scratch this month according to the nourishing principles of the Weston A Price Foundation, using their cookbook Nourishing Traditions, and following the diet plan and recipes of the Fast Metabolism Diet (FMD). I am also interested in the program called Trim Healthy Mama (THM) and I am in the process of reading their book and studying the science behind it. I lost 17 lbs on the FMD program back in April and it was a good place to start on revving up my metabolism. But I stopped following the specific steps of the diet when I moved to Indiana due to too much stress and other priorities taking first place. I kept using several of the recipes, but without following the specific steps, the weight loss stalled. My goal to loose weight went on the back burner. But I need to, and I think I am ready now to, get back to it.
*I want to prepare some of the FMD meals ahead and freeze in the freezer for easy prep later (like cooking soaked oatmeal, meats for tacos and fahitas, and foods like chili, soaked rice pudding, and breakfast egg casserole), ahead of time in the crock pot and divide them into meal size portions for the freezer. I find that if I use the crock pot. We have more variety in our meals if I have this step done ahead, because meal prep is that much easier and faster when we are hungry.
*Re-read the FMD book.
*Finish reading the THM book.
*I want to make a new ferment starts of Kombucha, water kefir, milk kefir, fermented pickles and other fermented veggies, and sourdough starters. I can’t wait to have some sourdough pancakes, sourdough waffles, and sourdough cinnamon rolls with kefir frosting! Most of these recipes are listed in the cookbook Nourishing Traditions easily available on the internet. I’ve been saving lots of them on my Pinterest boards and on my facebook page.
*I need to find a grassfed RAW MILK source for my family. I would love to keep a Jersey cow again. But I just don’t have the funds to buy one right now. I need to find a source soon. Raw milk provides so much protection for the immune system and with flu season (stomach and respitory) coming soon, we need it. Oligosaccharides in raw milk bind with bacterial and viral toxins and render them harmless. Grassfed raw milk is also a wonderful source of Vit. D, Vit. C, and Vit. A and Lord knows all my kids need more of these wonderful nutrients in our diet with the coming of winter. It also has CLA and complete protein with 22 amino acids to build muscles, Vit K2 to promote blood health and prevent arthritis, B12 & B6, fatty acids that help the white blood cells fight disease, and more. God made a perfect food in this resource. Deuteronomy 26:9 “You brought us here and gave us this land rich with milk and honey”. I feel so much better when we have this fresh raw milk as part of our daily nutritional routine.
*I want to update my calendar / planner daily so I can keep track of what is going on and what is coming up soon. Currently I update it once a week or less, and I can so easily loose track of what is going on and forget to plan enough ahead.
*I want to keep a daily food journal this month. I have kept them off and on over the years. I really helps me a lot to keep one and see what I have been eating and where I need to make changes.
*Take a weekly outing to the park.
*Take a weekly outing to the library.
*Spend more time with my husband discussing future plans, hopes, and dreams and nurturing our relationship. We have been married 22+ years, but it always takes a “first place” focus to keep it strong.
*I want to have one on one time with each one of my kids and do something special together.
*I want to learn to sew. I will be learning to sew a doll outfit this month. That is a good start! But I want to learn to sew pretty things for my daughter.
*Remember to take my supplements and vitamins each day. It is so easy to forget.
*I want to loose weight. That right there is a huge goal for me and one that is always on my mind. I haven’t lost any weight since we moved in May, and well the lack of progress in this area has me discouraged.
*T-tapp two times a week (even at least once would be better than none at all), walk one or two times a week, and strength train once a week. FMD encourages one day of cardio (M), one day of strength (W), and one day of stretching like exercises (F), and then off on the inbetween days (like Tue and Thur) and for two days (Sat and Sun) then start over each week to stimulate the metabolism. I don’t get enough physically activity and any or all of these would definitely improve my physical health and my mental outlook, and may keep my metabolism up high enough to burn some extra calories and help me loose weight.
*I want to get out of debt and be able to save money for the future.
*Go through all the clothes (for all 8 of us) and figure out what we can and can not wear, and find clothes warm enough to get through this coming Indiana winter. We have lived the last five years in North Carolina and it didn’t get very cold. We didn’t have to wear coats and boots and gloves and things that are a neccessity to get through the Indiana winter. So I am feeling stressed with how to do this with no money to buy the things we need. But going through what we have to work with is a good and nessessary place to start.
…and my list goes on and on and on. See, I told you it was a lot! It was so hard to choose only three things to focus on for this challenge this month.
But I hope by focussing on 3 of my goals for the next 30 days, I will make progress and permanent change for the better.
So what are your goals you are working on? Feel free to leave a comment in the space below.
Would you like to join us in the Change 3 Challenge? If so, you can list your 3 goals on Amber’s facebook page, or if you write a blog post about it, you can leave a link to it on her website.
Be sure to stop in and read the challenge links at Adventures in Mindful Cooking. You will glean so much and be encouraged when you read what 3 goals other mom’s are working on this month too.
This post will be linked up with:
Adventures in Mindful Cooking
Walk and Talk Wednesday