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10 Foods I Can’t Wait to Eat After I Wean My Son

Many breastfeeding mamas are forced to eliminate some type of food from their diets in one way or another. For me, it ended up being several different foods. For almost twenty months I’ve given up some of my favorite foods – eggs, dairy, wheat, peanuts, tree nuts, soy, corn, barley, oats, and peas. Some of the food groups I’ve missed more than others. Some food items I’ve been dreaming about eating for quite some time. So much so, that I found myself making a list. And today I’m sharing that list with you.

 

10 Foods I Can't Wait to Eat After I Wean My Son

1. Pizza – Technically I could list pizza for all ten, but for entertainment value, I’ll list nine more.

2. Tomato Mozzarella Salad – Tomatoes & basil are delicious, but without that mozzarella it just isn’t complete and I’ve been craving this combo for too long.

3. Peanut Butter Oatmeal – One of my favorite pre-race meals was eliminated from my diet during my training for the NYC marathon. It was tough giving this up, but I managed somehow. Even though I’ll be done with marathons for the year, I’ll be happy to reintroduce peanut butter oatmeal back into my pre-race meals.

4. Milk Chocolate – Easter, Valentine’s Day and the Christmas season were all very tough for me. My self control was definitely tested. Typically I don’t crave chocolate, but you know what they say about wanting what you can’t have. Godiva, I’m coming for you!

5. Sushi – Sushi without soy sauce?? Not so much. Unfortunately, I’ve been holding back on my favorite dish because it’s just not the same without that salty sauce. Dry sushi just doesn’t taste as enjoyable. And with all my favorite rolls, there’s always a mayo or egg substance that I had to avoid. That being said, as soon as I am able to eat sushi again, I have found an amazing cooking class on the CocuSocial website that teaches you everything you need to know to make your own sushi at home. Cookery has always been a passion of mine and I cannot wait to get cooking all of my favorite dishes again really soon.

6. Shrimp Pad Thai – Another one of my favorite dishes that contains peanuts and soy sauce. Hubby has even avoided our favorite Thai spot to help support my elimination of this one.

7. Chicken Nachos with All. The. Cheese. – Sour cream, salsa, guacamole and all that gooey cheese sounds like heaven. It may give me a tummy ache, but at least I’ll enjoy the process.

8. Au gratin potatoes – I’m so sick of plain potatoes. But a loaded baked potato or potatoes au gratin sounds so tasty compared to the plain potatoes I’ve been eating for the past 10 months.

9. Breakfast burrito – my hubby makes the best breakfast burritos and I’m so going to enjoy one of those as soon as possible.

10. Coffee Creamer – I’ve been drinking black coffee for about a year and I still haven’t been converted. I miss my creamer probably the most out of everything.

 

Is there anything that you have eliminated from your diet that you just cannot wait to eat again?

Harrison 18 Months

It’s been a while since I’ve posted about my son’s health.  Technically, I haven’t done an update at all  since his one year birthday, but since he just had his well visit with the pediatrician, I figured this is the perfect time to bring everybody up to speed on his health & nutrition.

Harrison 18 months

Truthfully, I really haven’t wanted to talk much about his health because it makes me a little sad. Every day I look at my son and a little piece of my heart breaks for him.  Every time he scratches his ankles until they bleed, I cringe.  Every night and early morning he wakes up screaming, I fight back tears.  Every time my husband and I have to cover his little hands with socks to keep him from itching, I feel like a failure.  His condition enrages and deflates my soul with every flare up and struggle he endures.

socks

If I’m really being honest with myself, I just don’t feel like I’m cut out for this.  I feel like I’m waaay out of my league.  I’m not disciplined enough to patent a child with this complicated of a situation.  I’m too much of a screw up.  Let’s face it.  I’m not the most patient parent, and I’m not the most consistent, but I do love my son and I try to do everything in my power to keep him from suffering.  I guess I’m working through this just as much as he is.  And I’m still dealing with the fact that things are moving slowly and mostly out of my control.  I want so badly to see more progress, but we just haven’t. It just makes me so frustrated and angry.  So I’ve been avoiding the topic on the blog for a while. But today I’m breaking my silence to speak about his issues.

If you’ve been keeping up with me for a while now, you might remember that my son was labeled failure to thrive at his 10 month checkup.  Since that time, he’s seen several doctors and we’ve discovered his weight problems are a reflection of his excessive food sensitivities.   I addressed those additionally in his one year post here.    After discovering he was sensitive to the top six food allergens and eliminating them from his and my diet (because I’m still breastfeeding), we’ve seen his skin get a little better. He has good days, and then he will have a flare up and have several days of misery.  Even on the days when we are doing well though, we still aren’t making the gains that I really would love to see.

Because he hasn’t shown the improvements that we would like, I have decided to continue breastfeeding him.  It was never my intention to nurse him this long, but I just cannot bring myself to cut out any additional calories from his diet.  If I can continue to provide him with additional nutrition, I’m going to do so.  He’s not ready to wean anyhow, so I don’t see how my decision makes any difference anyway.  I’ll continue to provide for him as long as he wants and needs it, regardless of the sacrifices that I have to make.  He’s worth it.  I’ll eat pizza and drink lattes at a later time.

 

Weight & Height 

His weight has barely moved up the scale despite our efforts.    As of now, Harrison weighs 18.2 pounds and is 32 inches tall.  At his one year update he weighed a mere 16.3 pounds and was 28 1/2 inches tall.  So you can see, he’s had some progress, but he’s still below the charts of a typical healthy baby.  At least he is getting taller, so that’s something to be positive about.

Eating

With all his allergies and triggers, we have a very boring feeding habits.  On a typical day, he eats chicken sausage and bacon for breakfast, lunch consists of chicken and rice and dinner is a variation of whatever we have cooked for dinner, typically chicken with a veggie with rice or potato.  He snacks twice a day on rice cakes and fruit with the occasional trip to chic-fil-a for grilled chicken nuggets and waffle fries.

Sleeping 

Most nights he sleeps 12 hours through the night, but if he’s in the middle of a flare up, he’s more inclined to wake up uncomfortable from his eczema.  He naps very well most days too, but again, that depends on whether he’s having an allergic flare up.

Clothing

Very recently Harrison graduated into 18 month pajamas.  He had worn holes into the knees of most of his 12 month pjs,probably because he’s been wearing them for close to a year, so I happily transitioned him into the longer size.  His shorts and pants can fluctuate between 12 and 18 month, but he definitely needs the length for jammies. He’s still pretty skinny, so the onesies fit him very loosely, especially around the collar.  I tend to dress him in t-shirts and overalls when I can because they look best worn loose and don’t accentuate his small frame.  Of everything, his feet are probably the smallest thing on his body.  He is just now finally growing out of his size two toddler shoes.  I presume he will gain more stability and balance as his feet grow and catch up to the rest of him.  His slow growth has definitely been one of the upsides to Harrison’s condition.  We haven’t been required to update his wardrobe in a very long time.  Currently, we are transitioning most of his clothes into the 18 month size though.

Treatment

We continue to push the correct nutritional options, but he is a toddler, so that’s not always an easy path. I keep a food log of all his meals and snacks, and we’re trying to pinpoint more of his triggers.

Since I am still breastfeeding to offer additional calories into his diet, there’s always that. Every day we slather him with oils and creams to keep him moisturized to prevent the irritation of the eczema.  He takes a bleach bath a few times a month to prevent infection from the open skin.  During a flare up, we diligently keep his hands and feet covered with socks to prevent him from scratching.  His ankles and wrists are the main target of his irritation, so keeping gloves on him prevents him from itching.  Sadly, “itch” is one of the more frequent words in his vocabulary.

We have since gotten rid of our dog, Stella.  It broke my heart and I miss her dearly, but it had to be done.  She now lives with my parents, so I still have visitation rights, so to speak.   We had our carpets cleaned by a professional to remove all of her dander.  It’s only been three weeks, so we are still waiting to see if that is going to make a difference.  We have also removed most of the stuffed animals from the kid’s rooms.  We kept a couple sentimental teddy bears, but bagged all the rest in the attic.  Dust is one of his triggers, and stuffed animals harbor lots of dust.

Currently we are seeing a gastroenterologist, allergist, dermatologist and nutritionist.  Our last specialist visit was with the allergist last week.  She ordered another panel of blood work to test him for more environmental allergies.  In addition, we are having a sweat test performed next week to check for cystic fibrosis.  I am really unsure why we are testing for this because he has absolutely no other symptoms of this, other than the poor growth.  I’m going to humor my allergist and complete the testing, because at this point, I’m desperate for something helpful.

We have been given the okay to begun offering him allergy medicine to help his reactions.  We have Zyrtec on hand, but have yet to use it.  We frequently give him Benadryl when he begins showing signs of a flare up to control his responses.  Two creams and lotions have been prescribed to work towards controlling his itching and prevent infection.

Milestones

  • Walks and Runs independently
  • Knows what ordinary thing are (phone, iPad, movies, blocks, balls)
  • Throws a ball and can swing at the tee  (Mommy and Daddy are real proud of our baseball hopeful for this)
  • Talks constantly. Says dozens of words in both English and in Spanish.
  • Follows directions (i.e. “Take this to your sister”  “Bring mommy your shoes”)
  • Points to body parts and recognizes parts of face.
  • Recites alphabet when prompted with help.
  • Draws and scribbles with crayons
  • Eats with utensils. (spoon, fork, cup)
  • Can walk up stairs on playground.  Slides down independently.
  • Had his first and second haircut at the big boy barber shop.  Daddy’s barber, Jonathan, cut his hair.

Harrison first hair cut

Likes:

  • Wreck-it-Ralph  and Inside Out     He is mesmerized by these movies.
  • Bing Bong toy  (Thanks to Diane B. for gifting that to us)
  • Music  He falls asleep to music most nights and he dances to Daddy’s Latin music when awake.
  • Lollipops  Great distraction for desperate times.
  • Boo Boo first thing in the morning.  (From the moment he wakes up, all he says is “Boo Boo, Boo Boo”  aka mommy’s milk)
  •  Loooooves his Papa & Nana and his Tia Ana
  • To climb on top of the table and sofas
  • To look at the “agua” (i.e. ponds, rivers, lakes, the ocean)
  • Chicken, broccoli, bacon, potatoes, rice cakes, green beans, strawberries, grapes, steak, turkey burgers, pineapple, beans and rice.
  • The playground slide.  He calls it “wee”  like the sound you make when you slide down it.  It’s so cute.
  • His sister.  She’s his everything.
  • The outdoors, although we think it may be harming him with all the environmental allergens.  (sad face)

playground

happy boy car seat

dinner time

 

Dislikes:

  • Getting his hands covered with gloves/socks.
  • His allergies
  • Saying goodbye to visitors.
  • Being ignored
  • When Daddy has to work (working from home has it’s disadvantages- Harrison doesn’t understand why Daddy can’t hang out and play all day with us)

 

Overall, Harrison is a very happy little boy. He is not a shy kid by any means.  Even through all the pain and discomfort with his eczema, he is mostly in good spirits.  He likes to flirt and say “hi” to the ladies at the grocery store.  He is not afraid to engage with other children at the playground.  Whenever we visit the indoor playground, he always tries to catch up to his sister and the bigger kids.   He’s very ambitious and unafraid.  His determination is inspiring to me as we continue to work towards getting him healthy and on the path to conquering his allergies.

Right now, I just want to enjoy being his mother.  I want to enjoy every adventure, every snuggle, and every happy moment we spend together.  Because I know it will pass in the blink of an eye and I don’t want to spend my whole time worrying and miss all the good times we share.  I look forward to so many more memories and can’t wait to see what the future has in store for our family.

#LoveBulu A Review with 50% Discount

Have you heard of Bulu Box?

bulu box logo

****Through my affiliation with Fit Approach I was granted an opportunity to try out a month of their subscription box service for the purposes of this review. All opinions shared in this post, as always, are completely mine.

 

Bulu Box is the first health, nutrition and weight loss discovery box designed to help you feel your best. There is either a regular Bulu Box or a weight loss box available for subscription. Each month with a subscription, you’ll get a custom box filled with a new mix of 4 to 5 premium supplements, healthy snacks or weight loss product samples from top brands to try. Every sample is sufficient enough to decide if the product is right for you. What’s even better is you have the opportunity to earn Rewards Points for sharing your thoughts about each product through the sample surveys. Use your points to purchase your new favorites in full size, directly from the Bulu Box website.

As a marathon training mamma, I find Bulu Box to be very valuable.  There aren’t many opportunities or room in my budget to try out new health and nutrition items.  Most times I’m required to purchase a full size package in order to try a new product.  The samples in Bulu Box allow me to try before I buy, so to speak, thereby savings money and exploring new and possibly nontraditional means to fit my weight loss, health and nutrition goals.  Through Fit Approach, I was lucky enough to sample the Bulubox subscription service.

Here’s what I got in my box.

BuluBox Contents

Anti-itch cream – I haven’t needed this yet, but I can just imagine how useful it will become if the mosquitos start biting.  It smells mildly of menthol, which makes sense since it’s got a small percentage in the cream.

 Island Boost Liquid Fuel – It’s Blueberry-Pomegranate flavor (two of my favorites), gluten free and vegan, so I’m actually really excited to try this out on my next long run as a fuel source.  I love how friendly it is to my diet.

Bugeater Foods Jump Protein – Didn’t know what I’d think about cricket based protein shakes, but I actually liked it.  It’s packed with 13 grams of protein, and 7 grams of fiber.  Not too bad on the taste buds too.  With my son’s allergies, I may be able to actually use this in my diet and continue breastfeeding, so that’s a win win.  I would’ve never known about this product otherwise, so this is just another visible perk of having a subscription service with Bulubox.

Yerba Prima Daily Fiber –  Tastes great and helps keep me regular.  This is a pretty standard product in the fiber supplement department.  I didn’t find it better or worse than other products I’ve used before.

Mediterra Nutrition Bar –  This was not my cup of tea.  The flavor was there, definitely full of it actually, but I typically enjoy the sweeter tasting nutrition bars with nuts, fruit and chocolate as opposed to sun dried tomato basil.

More T Toothbrush –  I have an electric toothbrush that I use 99% of the time, but I found this toothbrush to be very easy to use.  It’s design worked very nicely with the shape of my mouth.  It was a little odd to get used to the first time, but I can see how this style of brush would benefit more than a standard designed brush.  Again, another product I would have never considered had it not been included in my BuluBox.

Right now I can offer you a special discount code to get 50% off a 3-month subscription of Bulubox.  Just use code SWEATPINK to take advantage of this offer.  

bulubox discount code

 

 

Have you ever tried a box service like Bulu Box?

Would you like to try any of these products that I received?

Do you think a service like this is valuable to your lifestyle?

 

Five Good Food Habits to Practice

Hey-ya!  Welcome to Friday.  It’s got all the fabulousness you’ve been looking for in a weekday,  with Easter weekend trailing behind.  Yay!  No wonder they call it Good Friday!

As usual, I’m teaming up with the DC gals for another Friday Five.  Make sure to visit Courtney, Mar and Cynthia’s blogs to get in on the goods for this linkup.  They’re hosting a super hot linkup and all the cool kids are doing it!

Since this week is Good Friday, our theme is circulating around the word “Good”   I’ve decided to take a nutrition stand point on this and list Five Good Food Habits to Practice.

 

 

 

good food habits

 

 

  • Slow Down – Did you know that it takes your stomach 20 minutes to register fullness to your brain? Well, let that sink in, literally.  By taking your time to chew and not rushing through your meal you are actually allowing your brain to accurately register the degree of fullness to your brain.  Try it!  Count your chews at your next meal.  Try to chew 10-15 times for each bite and see how long it takes you to feel full
  • Focus on the Task at Hand – Don’t eat when you are distracted.  You will be more likely to shovel food into your mouth if you are distracted by the television or laptop (guilty).  More importantly, portion out your meals before you sit down to eat.  If you have a scale you can weight out your food, or measure out appropriate portions with measuring cups and spoons.
  • Veggie Up – Make vegetables the main attraction.  One or two days a week, take the spot light away from the animal proteins and make vegetables the star of your entree.  Aside from the fact that vegetables contain necessary vitamins and minerals, eating large amounts of vegetables can reduce your risk of chronic diseases.  Additionally, your digestion will thank you for eliminating the meat occasionally.  Meat is tough on digestion.
  • Hydrate with H2O –  Water is the best solution to keep you hydrated. And when you’re feeling hungry, drinking water can often satisfy your hunger. Thirst is often confused with hunger. True hunger will not be satisfied by drinking water.
  • Go For Fiber – Fiber rich foods are essential to any diet, and are known for keeping us regular, but they are also key foods that help maintain a healthy weight.

What good food habits do you try to implement?  

Share with me something that you think deserves to be on this list.  

Friday Five: Fueling For Fitness

Hey Friday.  Happy to see you again.  

I’m all chipper from a glorious 6 hours of sleep last night.  Actually, it’s all from early this morning, between the hours of 1 a.m. and 9 a.m.  My mother was kind enough to stay the night while my hubby is out of town again to help with my toddler in the morning, so that I could go back to sleep after Harrison’s early feeding.  Sleep is awesome!!!  

Our little guy sleeps very well and I’m thankful for it, but his sister likes to wake up bright and early, so I definitely took advantage of having my mom over for the night.  So after a cup of coffee, I’ve decided to get some blogging done.  Since it’s Friday, I’ll be doing the whole Friday Five thing with the DC chicas,  Mar, Cynthia and Courtney.   Make sure to visit their blogs and check out their take on today’s topic:  Fuel for Fitness or Running   FuelingForFitness

Fuel is something that is essential to my performance on a daily basis taking care of my family, but today I’m going to address what I use when I’m smack dab in the middle of marathon and fitness training.    

FF_Fuel_CoffeeCoffee  This is essential for ANY race day or long run.  It helps to get the body up and running – in more than one way.  PBandBananaOnBagel

Peanut Butter & Banana on Mini Whole Wheat Bagel (usually eaten 1 – 2 hours before a long run or immediately following a workout less than 1 hour)  FF_Fuel_GU

GU’s  If you’ve been running long enough, you’ve most likely tried these prepackaged performance nutrition.  I personally don’t care for many of the flavors, but I can actually stomach the espresso flavor, so I’ll take this 15 minutes before my long runs and distance races. FF_Fuel_ShotBloks

Cliff Shot Blocks  These are my favorite portable fuel to take with me during my long runs.  FF_Fuel_ChocolateSilk

Chocolate Milk  A delicious post race/run refreshment and a perfect quick reboot to help replenish those glycogen stores immediately following a tough run or workout.    

 

What is one of your regular or favorite fitness fuels?  

Do you ever eat something simply for the nutrition even if you don’t like the taste of it?  

Make sure to check out the blog tomorrow for a Best Damn Race Giveaway.  I’ll be giving away a BDR Prize Pack.