Wednesday, May 13, 2015

Eat the good stuff

Artwork by Ellie, a new favorite quote from recently watched Ratatouille

There are a lot more healthy changes we can make, but it has been exciting and fun to see the little progress we're making this year. I'm definitely at an in-between place right now trying to decide what a great long-term plan is. But I thought it would be fun to note some of our little changes so far.

+ I don't have to decide each time I go grocery shopping if we're going to stop by the bakery for doughnuts, since we've already made that decision.  (Yay! And sometimes ah, man!)

+ During the day (in between our several meals/snacks) when I have the munchies, I grab a few pieces of frosted shredded wheat or dried apricots or apples instead of a piece of candy or a few cookies/brownies from the freezer. Jordan's favorite mid-day snacks are roasted brussel sprouts or asparagus!

+ At night when I want a little sweet snack, I have a bowl of frosted shredded wheat or cheerios or Special K instead of ice cream or some other sweet dessert (This swap has helped me notice whether I am hungry or just want something sweet. I could eat a brownie or a bowl of ice cream hungry or not, but a bowl full of shredded wheat is too much if I'm really not hungry!)

+ When we do have dessert nights, we make 1/2 or 1/4 batches so that we don't have leftovers. And it's fun to make plans in advance for a dessert that sounds especially good.

+ It is super nice not to be tempted while shopping (especially at Walmart) by all of the seasonal treats that are so super cute and colorful and delicious looking... because I just know we're not going to by them, and that's that.

+ With lunch, we'll have apple slices or pear slices instead of a little treat on the side (though sometimes I do miss that little treat on the side!)

+ I've had fun experimenting with my favorite muffin recipes to make them a little healthier, but still fun as an after school snack. Also we still enjoy our oatmeal snack bites/"healthy cookies" every once in a while

+ We've been cooking with half white/half brown rice for a long time. Recently we ran out of white rice so I made just brown, and we realized that we all like it just as well. Hooray for an easy switch!

+ I've been cooking more and more with whole wheat flour - in muffins and bread the kids don't mind/notice, (the kids even prefer honey whole wheat bread to regular sandwich bread now!)  but in pancakes they often mention how they like Landon's (white flour pancakes) better.  :)

+ I've been working on switching to real maple syrup  for our Tuesday special breakfast days, but the kids so far would rather have jam with their pancakes than the real (substitute "yucky!") maple syrup (I think it's great though, also, I'm not sure if this is even super important to me, but we'll keep trying for a bit and see :)

+ I told Landon I was going to sign up to bring treats to soccer and he was greatly distressed, "you'll just bring something healthy like carrot sticks or something!" (We're taking treats tonight and though I teased that I'd bring roasted asparagus and carrot juice, it's capri sun + chocolate chip granola bars... I'm not sure yet what the perfect balance or what I think is best in fun vs. healthy eating for things like this, but for now fun it is :)

+  I've been feeling so much better since we started this. I also made some other significant changes all at the same time though, so it's hard to say what has made the biggest difference. But one thing is that I've had fewer headaches and I think that is definitely related to eating less sugar.

+ I've learned to cook with kale! For some reason this has been so exciting to me. I was sure I wouldn't like it, but I tried it and was so happily surprised. And it's one thing that just makes me feel like I'm doing a good job eating well, "I eat kale!"

+ We're still working on figuring out what we'd like to be our habit treat-wise for parties or celebrations or vacations. But for now, it's great to have made such great little changes to our every day eating!