Friday, March 30, 2012

Bedwetting and Dairy?

One of my children have been a bed wetter. They have outgrown the time period where it is typical and moved on to the embarrassing stage. We blamed it on the fact that he is a very, very heavy sleeper. I never thought much past that.

I had taken him to the naturopath for allergies and she asked about his history. She asked if he is a bed wetter. She then proceeded to tell me that she is seeing a big correlation between bedwetting and dairy. I had never heard of that. He didn't have much dairy but after her conversation, I noticed that the nights that he did wet his bed, he had some sort of dairy the night before. 

We have been off dairy for a while and he hasn't wet the bed in several months. However, he decided to go get an ice cream sunday with friends by himself the other day. Free agency is a kicker. That night, I awoke to the sound of the shower. Yep. He wet the bed. I asked him if the ice cream sunday was worth it. It was good for him to see that there was no doubt that dairy was the trigger. I guess you need a little reminder now and then. 

If you have a bed wetter, give it a try. You need to give it a couple weeks for the system to clean out a bit. 

It never ceases to amaze me that food is the link to most every problem out there, if not all. 

Monday, March 26, 2012

Growing up.

To get the most out of your garden space, grow whatever you can vertically. I use tomato cages to grow my cucumbers, peas, pole beans, berry bushes and cantaloupe vertically. It also keeps the fruits off the ground and helps them to be nice and straight. I saw this picture on Pinterest today and am having my other half whip this up this weekend. 

I am using it to grow my cantaloupes vertically and then am planting some New Zealand Spinach underneath it benefiting from the shade. This way, you get double the space in your garden and it looks pretty also. We even have all the supplies on hand! He was so happy to have another project to do for me (:! 

If any of you are still needing some plants for your garden, shoot me an email. I can still get you some from Hatching Bunny Farms. I picked up a few more today. Heirloom, organic and beautiful. 

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

The New Garden. Chicken Proof.

I have such a wonderful soul mate. I asked, and he delivered. He already built me a big garden on the side of the house but I just had to have more. You know how us women are. I had this stretch between two trees that is just perfect for more plants. Since he just loves to serve me, he made this beautiful, chicken proof, garden yielding 16 X 4.5 feet of precious growing potential. I just love it. It is much prettier than the non-edible plants that filled the space. I can't wait to plant the whole thing. Almost time. Besides the labor, the cost was cheap. Here's the details in case you want to copy it:

The logs come from Home Depot in the gardening section. They come in a redwood color. I am sure Lowe's carries the same thing. I think they were around $3 a piece. They are flat on two sides so you can stack them. They come in 8 feet lengths. Stacking 3 high, you get 14 "'s . Perfect for a grow box. He drilled holes in the ends and skewered them with re bar. He then pounded the re bar into the ground a few feet. It is steady as can be. No nailing needed. 

The dirt came from Pioneer Landscaping. They have a few valley locations. It is about $30 per cubic yard. We only needed about 2 1/4 cubic yards. Cost extra if they deliver. We bought the sandy loam mixture for gardens. We used free teenage labor to unload it. 

The chicken proof cages are made from 1" X 2" boards and chicken wire. 

I did the beautiful stain work. I didn't stain the insides or bottoms of the cages so that it won't contaminate the soil. The stain is a sealer to help protect the wood from the rain and sun.

My large garden is doing beautifully. In fact, the best ever. Last year was horrible. I decided to get all fancy in the fertilizer department. I have always been a minimalist with the fertilizer. It has always worked for me. I started adding all sorts of things like bone meal, fish emulsion, epsom salt, etc. Totally overdid it. Not a good result. This year, I went back to simple with a few additions.

Cow manure is the bomb along with good mulch. I added lots and lots of mulch and manure this year. The soil is beautiful. All I do now is add the Blue Bonnet fertilizer that I get from The Backyard Farmer once a month. In addition, I spray the plants with a Fish emulsion, Seaweed/kelp mixture every two weeks. I bought a gallon of it from Summer Winds nursery in mesa. The gallon contains both emulsion and kelp together. It is organic and you just mix about 1 T. in a 32 oz. spray bottle, shake and spray when the sun isn't directly on the plants. It feeds the plants directly giving them a power boost. Be careful not to spray directly on the blossoms so they don't dry out. A little mist is fine. Drench the rest of the plant. One spray bottle did all my plants. I didn't do the leafy greens that are ready to harvest. I don't want a fishy taste to my smoothies! Other than that, I just water a good soaking every other day. They are all smiling and happy. My new garden isn't quite as good yet since the soil isn't as rich as my 10 year old garden. We will get there. 

I just came in from playing in the dirt. Honestly, it is my favorite thing to do. Here is part of today's harvest:

Celery, peas, spinach, radishes, collards and Kale. A salad and smoothies are on tap. My peas are going hog wild right now.

We ate some up in a delicious coconut Korma the other night. I always hated peas until I grew them. 26 out of 27 of my preschoolers beg to go pick peas. They love them. They are so very sweet and so fun to snap and eat. Their parents can't believe they actually eat them. There is a big difference between store bought and home grown. 

I am going to miss these plants when it gets too hot. I love the spinach the most so I am very happy to have found a summer variety of spinach. It will actually produce all year! I bought some heirloom New Zealand Spinach seeds from Sweet Corn Nursery (see my sidebar). I am hoping that they are growing when my current spinach plant bolts. Fingers crossed. 

My celery is amazing right now. Thanks to my friend, Terri, she told me that if you just cut the stocks off leaving 3 inches above soil, they will keep growing. Sure enough they are. In the summer, they will get bitter but you can still make soup with them. I am going to see how long I can keep them going. Most people tell me that their celery is always bitter. I keep mine in a shadier location with lots of water. As with cucumbers, if they are bitter, you need more water. 

I am so happy to hear of all you new gardeners out there! I think people are really catching on that we need to grow food ourselves. Spread the word. Send me a picture of your garden and I will do a post showing what others are doing. A sort of show and tell episode!

Many ask what to plant. Here is what I have going on this crop:

Green Bush Beans
Yellow Bush Beans
Lemon Cucumbers
Armenian Cucumbers
Burpless Cucumbers
Yellow Crookneck Squash
Yellow Straight neck Squash
Some other weird squash
5 Varieties of chili peppers
8 varieties of tomatoes, about 15 plants
4 varieties of bell peppers, about 10 plants
Carrots (too late to start now)
New Zealand Spinach
Sage, Basil, Mint and Cilantro

My fruit trees/bushes are:


Let's hope for a good crop this year! 

Did I inspire anyone to start? That was my point. Oh, and to brag a little. I am so proud. A special thanks to the love of my life for making all my dreams come true! (We just celebrated 20 years, I think I will keep him a little longer.)

If you don't have a garden and still want good, home grown produce, try out The Backyard Farmer! All local. Super delicious. They now have homemade bread in addition to farm eggs, local, raw honey, local olive oil, fertilizers, chicken feed and bedding, organic meats, and more and more. They deliver right to you for free! Can't beat it. It is like a present on my doorstep each Wednesday. I even got a present from them today. Thanks, guys! They also tolerate my many, many emails for advice from plants to chickens. I love having such knowledgeable sources!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Which diet for you?

I have been getting lots of emails about special diets for kids on the spectrum, diets for leaky guts, diets for female issues, etc. The burning question is what diet will fit the need at hand. The problem is, each person is different so there isn't an exact diet to follow. Don't get me wrong, there are a good handful of diets out there that serve as a wonderful outline for following but you need to take it all in with prudence.

When I first started realizing that Tate had issues with leaky gut and Autism; I read everything I could get my hands on. My first very favorite read was "The Viscous Cycle" by Elaine Gotschall. The book gave me a huge intro into gut issues and lead me to take on the SCD diet it outlined. The Simple Carbohydrate Diet is a diet that took out all grains and uncultured dairy and many more things to heal the gut. I followed that for Tate for a year. We saw great improvements but in the end, with the limited food selection, he became allergic to eggs and almonds on top of all the other things he was allergic to.

We then tried a few other diets which each came with some good and not as good points. The problem was not the premise of the diets, but the premise that Tate could not fit into a diet. No one really can fit into one particular diet. We all have different dietary needs. What we need to do is tweak along the way, listen to our bodies and change as we see fit. The problem we have in our eating today is that we don't pay attention to what our bodies are telling us.

For instance, I am a believer in cultured dairy. Pure, good, raw dairy. I have cultured it for years. We don't drink fluid dairy. I have made yogurts, used pastured butter, raw cheeses , etc. Then, in an effort to heal some ailments in our family, I decided to tweak a little of what I was feeding my family. I have a son who was suffering from acne. He is a good eater, he is healthy and has done everything to help his skin. I believe completely that skin issues are a manifestation of problems with diet. Through my motherly gift of inspiration, I knew that he needed to go off all dairy. In addition, I had a son with a rash on his backside that has been persistent for quite some time. He LOVES yogurt. Tate, or course, can't handle dairy at all and hasn't had it for 5 years. My husband and number 3 child have stuffy noses. Even with my cultured, raw dairy; I believed whole heartedly that dairy had to go. I have some good troupers in my house who obliged their mother and wife and went with it. Amazingly, not surprisingly, the rashy backside completely healed, only to return when he ate yogurt one day. He decided that that was not worth it. My stuffy nose group sound much clearer; the one with acne knows completely that his acne is a result of dairy intake along with hormones. If he eats it, he will have large acne eruptions by the next day. If he doesn't, it is much, much more under control. I never knew I had an issue with cultured dairy until I quit. I realized that when I did eat cheeses or dairy products, I felt bloated. I no longer have that feeling and my stomach is nice and flat. I feel great and absolutely desire no dairy, whatsoever. 

It was a little challenging at first removing all dairy as an enchilada just isn't the same without cheese. But, it is now easy peasy and I find food actually tastes  much better without it. Really, we don't miss it. There is a wonderful coconut ice cream that we enjoy as a treat to substitute when you just have to have ice cream. 

If you want to feel better; if you want to heal your body and change your life; you will never, ever go wrong with taking the garbage out of your life. Take away the sugar, the uncultured dairy ( or all of it), the processed foods. Going gluten free is always good to help heal the body. Don't eat soy products. Eat organic foods. Eat local. Cook things yourself. Limit your meats. Drink green smoothies. Drink lots of water. Don't drink soda! 

If everyone just stuck with those basic rules, a majority of disease would be gone. Weight would be under control. 

If you have eczema or stomach discomfort, keep a food journal and try to pinpoint what is making you sick. If you avoid that food for some time, at some point you will probably be able to eat it again. Tate used to be allergic to over 32 known allergens; we are down to about 3. You can heal your body. 

Listen. Pay attention. Do your body a favor. Eat for your health and vitality. When you adopt this behavior, you will stop feeling that you are depriving yourself of certain foods; you feel that you are blessing yourself with certain foods. 

I had a great email from a husband who was thrown into a gluten free/ paleo diet after his wife emailed me a couple weeks ago. Their son had just been diagnosed with Autism. I gave the wife my lecture on going gluten/dairy free for their son and didn't hear back. The usual. Few go with it. When I saw the email from the husband, I thought I was going to get the lecture from him about what I told his wife. Quite the opposite. It was an email telling me of the amazing changes in their lives after just a week or two of the diet. He has diabetes and after just one week, his insulin levels have decreased by one half. Amazing. They are convinced. I am so proud of them! It always works. Always. 

You can still enjoy food, if not more, when you start eating right. Food will start to taste better. 

I made these little gems below today from the wonderful blog, The Sprouted Kitchen. You can find the recipe here. Soooo yummy. A little guilt free Almond Joy. Dairy free. Gluten free (when using gluten free oats).The only sweetener is a little maple syrup. A perfect treat for a girl who loves her chocolate. 

I am so not deprived. My mouth and tummy are very happy. Eating healthy can be delicious. 

Friday, March 16, 2012

supplement order

I am placing an oil and supplement order on Tuesday morning. Email me or leave a comment if you need something!

Also, I am trying to get an order together for Tropical Traditions Gold label coconut oil and shredded coconut. $60 per gallon on the oil. Let me know if you are interested. I need 6 gallons to make an order. 

New post coming...been having too much fun this spring break.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

The Teeth Tell the Tale.

Tate didn't get teeth until he was upwards of 16 months. I was concerned the boy didn't come with a set or two. When they did finally start to appear, they were the size of adult teeth. Poor kid. He has the smallest mouth ever with the largest teeth, ever. They didn't fit and are overlapped. No one had told me why or that this was correlated to his malabsorption issues. When I discovered "Nourishing Traditions" and Weston Price, I learned fascinating information about teeth and jaw formation. I wish I had known all of this before. This is a great article from the Nourishing Our Children blog that is filled with lots and lots of great info. Take time to read it, if you are curious. I was. 

How The Teeth Tell The Tale

On the home page of our website, we pose the question, “Can we be well fed but malnourished?”  Let’s explore the answer!
A photo of a father and daughter.
Father and daughter.  What do you notice about their faces from one generation to the next?  Similar eyes, noses, smiles … however, daughter’s face is significantly more narrow.  Why?  Do you think it is because mother may have a more narrow face and her daughter inherited that trait?  Perhaps … but, before we draw that conclusion, let’s consider the following:
Photo of Dental Deformities
Pictured above are a variety of different dental issues that we as a society have come to accept as normal or due to heredity.  However, Dr. Weston A Price’s research indicates that these conditions are in fact not genetic but, rather, caused by a lack of vital nutrients during the formative period of the body.  Dr. Price, a prominent Cleveland dentist practicing in the 1920′s, 30′s and 40′s, embarked on a series of travels to remote parts of the world in 1931 which culminated in his first publication of Nutrition and Physical Degeneration in 1939.
He discovered time and again that when the “displacing foods of modern commerce” were introduced into a healthy population group that there was a corresponding impact on their teeth.  At the time, the list of such man-made items coming into the outposts during Dr. Price’s day was relatively short: refined sugar, white flour, vegetable oils (primarily cottonseed oil), canned fruits and vegetables and canned and condensed milk.  When people started to consume foods made with these items, he documented an increase in dental carries or cavities in that generation.  The next generation developed a more narrow face, with corresponding dental deformities or crooked teeth.  Please learn more about Dr. Price’s research in a preview of our presentation:
Photo of child at the dentist having a cavity filled.
While dentists today do correlate cavities to nutrition, their focus tends to be on sugar and other refined carbohydrates.  The typical solution for decay is to fill the cavities, encourage the patients to increase their level of dental hygiene while decreasing their consumption of sweets.  According to Price, when given enough specific nutrients, the body will re-mineralize the tooth naturally so that no decay arises.  The body can also repair damage that has already occurred.  Otherwise we are faced with choosing amongst a short list of dental materials to put in our mouths and the mouths of our developing children, all of which are toxic to a certain degree.
Illustration of 32 Teeth
Dental Deformities
Dentists by and large don’t correlate deformities, such as crowding or overbites, to nutrition.  As Dr. Suzan Hahn, a San Francisco dentist, explains: “When the jaw bone has enough nutrient density during development, it forms as a wide flat plane and all 32 teeth can come in unobstructed.  When nutrients are lacking during the formative period, the bone bows and then the teeth come in crowded, crooked, with under bites, over bites or spaces.”  As an aside, the same thing happens with the pelvis.  When the diet is poor during the formative period, the pelvic opening will be oval rather than round, creating the possibility of birthing problems.  The common solution to dental deformities is to cosmetically straighten teeth with braces. However, even with orthodontics, there is a limit to the structural corrections that can be made.
Photo of child wearing braces.
What’s wrong with having crooked teeth? Can’t we just straighten them with braces?
While we can create a beautiful-looking smile, braces do not address the underlying cause of crowded teeth, which is a lack of proper nutrition. One may have corrected straight teeth, but one could still be permanently left with:
Narrow Nasal Passages
Constricted Ear Canal
Constricted Glands in the Head
Reduced Surface Area in the Lungs
Digestive Disorders
Bone Problems
and a Narrow or flattened Pelvis
A photo of straight, natural teeth
The teeth tell the tale!
Pictured above are naturally straight teeth.  As Sally Fallon Morell, President ofThe Weston A. Price Foundation and author of Nourishing Traditions,  explains in her PowerPoint on Traditional Diets:
When the teeth are straight, it’s a sign that the rest of the body was properly constructed, with good bone structure, good musculature, keen eyesight and hearing, optimal function of all the organs, optimistic attitude and a well functioning mind. And when the teeth are straight and the facial structure broad, the pelvic opening is round, allowing for easy childbirth. But when the teeth are crooked, it is a sign that there will be compromises in the rest of the body as well. When the face is narrow and the teeth crowded, there is less room for the important glands in the head—the pituitary, the pineal and the hypothalamus, the master gland. The hypothalamus is the seat of impulse control—and what is the defining characteristic of our young people today? Lack of impulse control!
When the teeth are crowded, the nasal passages are likely more narrow so there’s more susceptibility to infection.  The ear tubes are more narrow so problems in this area are more likely. Crooked teeth often goes with poor posture and underdeveloped muscles. The plumbing and the wiring of the body-house will be compromised as well. There will be less surface area in the lungs, fewer cells in the kidneys.  The security system of your house—your immune system—will not be able to keep out all intruders. In addition to physical problems caused by poor diet, mental and emotional problems also appear.  We actually have receptors for feel-good chemicals in our brains and these receptors can’t work without the nutrients found in foods like seafood, animal fats and organ meats.
Finally, when the face is narrow, the pelvic opening is oval and childbirth becomes much more difficult, even life threatening.  We should not blame the doctors for all the C-Section births they are doing today—these operations are necessary because otherwise the babies cannot get through the narrow opening of the pelvis.”
Once a child’s body has been formed, we can’t correct the narrow bone structure, although with good nutrition, it is still possible to be healthy.  However, we can correct the bone structure in the next generation with good nutrition before conception and during pregnancy and growth.  See our recommended diet for pregnant and nursing mothers and overall dietary recommendations.
A photo that compares normal and compromised facial structure
Facial Structure
This photograph illustrates perfectly the difference between normal and compromised facial structure.  These two men belong to the same tribe and have the same genetics, but the young man on the right has excellent facial structure, a very broad face, while the young man on the left shows the elongation of the face and the narrowing of the palate that comes with the introduction of modern foods.  His body has done the best it could with the materials available, but did not have the nutrients needed to build the strong bones that are required for wide dental arches.  While the boy on the right has a bone structure that supports the entire face, it looks as though the face of the boy on the left is actually hanging from the skull.
A photo of Pottenger's Cats
Pottenger’s Cats
Like Price, Dr. Frances Pottenger was a researcher.  His studies revealed that predictable changes in health can occur when you change the diet.  In his study, cats that were fed a diet of raw meat, raw milk and cod liver oil lived generation after generation in good health.  When the raw food was replaced by pasteurized milk and partially cooked meat, allergies and skeletal deformities occurred in the first generation. The offspring of these poorly fed cats developed glandular problems – thyroid, adrenal and pancreatic. The next generation experienced a whole host of degenerative diseases, and the fourth generation exhibited mental disorders and was infertile, meaning they did not reproduce. The implication for humans?  Not that humans should eat only raw foods – humans are not cats.  But, rather when the human diet produces “facial deformities,” as we are seeing these days, extinction will occur if that diet is followed for several generations.
The photo above is reproduced by permission by the Price-Pottenger Nutrition Foundation who holds the copyright. Please do not use the photo without their express written consent.
A photo of a boy with an open mouth showing his palatal expander.
So back to our question – Can we be well fed but malnourished?
In a word – Yes.  Yes, we can. It is possible to be malnourished even when we have plenty to eat.  The very narrow arch behind the palatal expander captured above is indicative of what Dr. Price referred to as physical degeneration.
As has been previously mentioned … it is not just the teeth and the shape of the face that are impacted by poor nutrition!  Knowing that there are key nutrients needed for brain development, we can infer that without them, full development may be delayed, interrupted or never realized. Key nutrients include Vitamins A and D, Choline, DHA, Zinc, Tryptophan and Cholesterol. Most of them are found in the following foods: cod liver oil, and the liver, butter and egg yolks from grass-fed animals, while some are found in seafood and the meat of grass-fed animals.
How many of us routinely consume these foods or feed them to our children?  My hope is that more and more do – which is why I established this educational initiative!  Read more: and view the related section in our presentation here:
“We eat a nutrient dense diet, but my children still have crooked teeth?!”
In response to this information, a handful of people have expressed to me that they have fed their children a nutrient dense diet, yet their teeth are still crooked.  Possible reasons: parents didn’t start eating a nutrient dense diet well before the child was conceived in order to build their own nutritional reserves, their diet wasn’t as nutrient dense as they thought, they didn’t allow for enough spacing between children to recuperate their nutritional reserves  - 3 years is recommended, there is a malabsorption issue caused by a compromised gut in the mother and/or child, and/or it may take more than one generation for some families to reverse the trend of physical degeneration that results in crooked teeth.
This post has proven to be fairly long, so in a subsequent one, I will share my own personal experience that mimics what Dr. Price and Sally Fallon Morell describe above.  Meanwhile, will you share your experiences?

Monday, March 5, 2012

Of Importance.....

     On the ledge above Tate's headboard are four things: A penguin, a little puppy, a birthday hat and pictures of Jesus. He keeps his treasures safe above him when he sleeps. It is a plain picture of what is important to him. Most kids are like that. They will have a display on a nightstand, dresser or special place displaying what is near and dear to them. Tate LOVES penguins, puppies, birthdays and Jesus. Don't move them off his shelf. He will notice.

     I have been thinking a lot lately about this topic. If I were to have a display of what is important to me, what would it be? If we asked ourselves that question, as moms, we would always answer "children, husbands, etc..." Those would always be the top of our list but I wondered if my children and my husband would feel that they were of utmost importance to me. I am sure they know that they are loved and that I love being their mom and wife. However, do I show that in my actions? Will they leave my home as they become of age knowing that they were what mattered most? There are many righteous things, and some not so righteous things, that are in our lives that take our focus off track a bit. It may start off as a little side hobby or interest and soon, we can't stop thinking about it or even obsessing about it. It may pull our focus away from what is truly important. 

     I love to do research on the internet and learn as much as I can about health and nutrition. I can justify this since it helps my family and my blogging friends. But, justification doesn't mean that it is the right use of my time when done too often. Same goes with exercise. Exercise is important and healthy for our bodies and minds but when we are gone every weekend or mornings when we should be taking care of our families, then it has probably gone too far. Children notice when moms aren't present. We can put too much focus on our church callings sometimes when it could be scaled down a bit. We can become addicted to reading, facebook, friendships, etc. Whatever pulls our focus away too much from what matters most always needs to be put into check. 

     Anything that becomes an obsession is unhealthy. Obsessions occupy our thoughts. The most important thing we can give our children and spouses is our time. Time is precious. As they say, the kids grow up before you know it. How true that is.  I look at my 18 year old and wonder where the time went. I hope and pray that he knows that he is of great importance to me. I have tried really hard to be  mentally present when my children walk in the door from school or when they wake up. They do the most talking at those critical times. They just want to know that mom is there for them. It means taking my focus off other things that I am thinking about to focus on them. It isn't always easy and I am certainly not anywhere near perfect on this but I am trying. It means that I don't get everything crossed off my list that I want to. It means that my house isn't as clean as I want it to be sometimes. I am learning to let some things go now and then and be OK with it. 

     I know we are going to be held accountable for our time in the end. We are going to be held accountable for the care of our families. We need to keep a constant check on how we are using our time. The clock is ticking. 

  What's on your nightstand? What occupies your thoughts? What would your children say is important to you? 

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Backyard Farmer feed bag

I love my chicken bag! The Backyard Farmer makes these out of recycled feed bags. They are perfect for collecting citrus and for going to farmers market. I love that you are helping to reduce waste and they are super strong and durable. Check them out on The Backyard Farmer's order form! Thanks, Galen!