Changing my world, one step at a time

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

He has my heart

and he holds it in his small hands. There is NOTHING like a grandchild's love!

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Anxiety toolbox

I have pretty severe anxiety issues. This expresses itself in a myriad of ways. Lately my therapist and I have been discussing having a mental health “toolbox” of things to help me curb/cope with the anxiety.

Today I had to make two different list. The first has to do with dealing with people who create anxiety in me.

Boundaries list
I’ll talk to you if:                                    You act with loving kindness
                                                                You treat me with respect
                                                                We honestly communicate
                                                                You take NO for an answer
                                                                You honour my boundaries

I’ll hang up/walk away if:                      You ask for money when you know I have none
                                                                You demand I do something/anything
                                                                You try to manipulate me
                                                                You whine
                                                                Talking to you increases my anxiety/ sends me into a panic                                                                     attack

The second list is for those times when I’m spinning from anxiety and can’t seem to stop. This is a list to get me out of my head and into my body.

1.       Take an Ativan
2.       Go for a walk with headphones and music on
3.       Watch TV and knit
4.       Put on music and cook or clean
5.       Do yoga and diffuse essential oils
6.       Meditation app (especially good late at night)

Hopefully these tools will help. I’m very tired of constantly being struck down by things. I need a way to cope.

Anyway, on to other things. Like food! I was at a friend’s house this week and her daughter kindly made my favourite cookies….they are made with egg whites and ground hazelnuts and are absolutely delicious!

My husband cooked an amazing meal for a friend and I. He poached salmon and pan seared bacon wrapped scallops. Drizzled them with a lovely beurre blanc. And served it alongside a green salad with beets, feta, almonds, toasted quinoa and an avocado herb dressing that was to die for….heaven on a plate. He also made a beer batter bread to go with the meal.

I’ve been knitting along on my “happy” shawl and am almost at the halfway point. Really enjoying this project as it’s quite mindless and knits quickly. Daily movement is still happening. I’m doing Yoga with Adriene’s 30 days of yoga. I did day 5 today and although some days are harder than others and some poses quite challenging, on the whole I am enjoying it. Since the weather has been warmer I started walking but that’s gone by the wayside for the moment since I’ve developed a huge blister on my heel that makes walking any distance horribly painful.

Well that’s it for now. More next week!

C   xo

Monday, February 20, 2017

Just rambling on....

I’m sorry that I didn’t post last week. It was a tough one….working on case studies for school, having to go for a blood transfusion, fighting this cold that is never ending. It’s been one thing after another. But things are looking up and I’m feeling better than I was. Needless to say, my daily movement project took a hit last week too. I did manage 20 minute yoga sessions three times but that was it. I was too tired and too sick to move beyond my bed and my chair.

I have a really hard time accepting when these things happen. It comes from having an all or nothing mindset. And that’s not good! Life ebbs and flows for all of us and there are times when we have to shift priorities and our mindsets! I have to learn to roll with the punches without deciding that I’ve failed and giving up. Slow and steady WILL win this race.

I tried a new face mask…it’s Kiehl’s Turmeric and Cranberry Seed Energizing Radiance Masque. It goes on like a clay mask and dries like one too, I couldn’t crack a smile without cracking the mask. The results were great though. My skin felt soft and it was much brighter. Less dull and flaky. So it did live up to it’s name.

My naturopath had mentioned to me that my thyroid was operating at a sub-optimal level. Although my lab values were within “normal” range as far as conventional medicine was concerned, I was exhibiting a lot of symptoms of hypothyroidism. I picked up a book called “The thyroid connection” by Amy Myers, MD and it’s confirmed what my Naturopathic Doctor has said. According to Myers there are things that a person can do beyond just taking medication. Diet, supplements and lifestyle changes can drive positive change in how well a person’s thyroid works. I had Grave’s Disease (an auto-immune form of hyperthyroidism) ten years ago, and it shouldn’t come as a surprise that my thyroid is wonky again. This time in the opposite direction. So, I’ll keep reading and decide if her 28 day plan is something I should try. I’d like to have my ND have a look at it first too. I trust her judgement and want to make sure the plan would be a good fit for me. I’m having surgery on March 20th so it may be something I’ll look into doing in April.

I’ll be going for a walk today; this warmer weather and sunshine feels so good! I’m longing for spring…Even though I’ve used my “happy light” pretty consistently this winter and have upped my vitamin D level, I still struggle with seasonal depression. Getting outside more would help but I truly detest the cold! No more how warmly I’m dressed I still feel like I’m freezing….too bad I live in Canada! This is something I really need to work on next winter.

What’s for dinner
Monday-             gluten free spaghetti and meat sauce
Tuesday-             frittata made with red peppers, onion, spinach and goat cheese
Wednesday-      poached salmon, scallops, green beans and red peppers
Thursday-            sweet potato and chickpea curry made with kale, coconut milk and cilantro served over brown rice
Friday-                  roast beef dinner at mom and dad’s
Saturday-            chicken brochette, greek potatoes, greek salad and tzaziki

Well that’s it for now. I have you all have a great and wonderful week!
C  xo

Friday, February 10, 2017

Daily Movement update

I've been rolling out my mat this week! Besides my quick morning practice and core exercises, I've been mindful about adding movement to my day. I've been over to a friend's house 4 times in the past week to do yoga. It's felt so good! But, boy, am I ever out of shape....and it's easy to get discouraged. I get around this by reminding myself that things can be different a year from now OR I can continue doing nothing and things can remain exactly the same. The choice is mine. And that choice is made everyday.

Another thing that's helped is clarifying why I want to add daily movement to my life. The answer for me is for my health. As someone with fibromyalgia it's important for me to keep moving. The pain is so much worse when I don't. The worse the pain gets the less I want to move. It's a vicious cycle.
I want to be able to do all the things on my bucket list. I want to be able to move easily and without pain. I want the endurance to hike for four hours again and the strength to lift heavy things. Sure I want to lose weight but that's not the main reason for daily movement. My health and quality of life come first.

On days I haven't done the extra yoga I've walked and done the toning exercises mentioned in a previous post. I've managed every day but one since February started. And that's because I was sick and had zero energy or ability to get moving. This project is turning out to be a great one!

Tuesday, February 7, 2017

Happy reading

I solemnly resolve no to buy anymore books until I've actually made a dent in my "to be read" shelves. That includes kindle books (the list is long!) and no library books either. This has to be done, my shelves are overflowing!

There's bookcase full of books, a full shelf stuffed two books deep, 2 milk crates, a kindle and a kobo. 

At the moment I'm knee deep in schoolwork (studying Mind Body Spirit) and I just started reading "The Call of the Farm" by Rochelle Bilow. It seems like it'll be a fun read.

So what's on those "to be read" shelves? Here's a sampling:

Rare Objects by Kathleen Tessaro
Glory Over Everything by Kathleen Grissom
Harry Potter and the Cursed Child by JK Rowling (late getting to this one!)
The World Before by Aislinn Hunter
Elegance by Kathleen Tessaro
The Poisonwood Bible by Barbara Kingsolver
 The Signature of all Things by Elizabeth Gilbert
Dreams of Joy by Lisa See\
China Dolls by Lisa See
The Sunday Philosophy Club by Alexander McCall Smith
Passionate Nutrition by Jennifer Adler
The Book of She by Sara Avant Stover
Whole 30 by Melissa Hartwig
Heart Fire by Shiva Rea
The Heart Goes Last by Margaret Atwood
The Royal Nanny by Karen Harper
The Bookshop Corner by Jenny Colgan
A Change of Altitude by Anita Shreve
Arrowood by Laura McHugh
Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy
Before Lunch by Angela Thirkell
Onions in the Stew by Betty McDonald

What's on your shelves?

Happy reading everyone!

C xo

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Daily movement

I've managed to keep my commitment of daily movement every day except Friday. Yesterday was just a horrible day. I had a meeting and got some crappy news. This set off a huge fibromyalgia flare up. Fever, every bit of me miserable. But I woke up this morning feeling better and have been able to tackle the day.

One thing I've been doing every evening is a list of toning exercises. If I haven't moved much beyond my sun salutations and core exercises, at least these tip me over the edge. This is what I do:

10 squats
10 lunges on my right leg
10 lunges on my left leg
5 push ups
10 crunches
15 lying glute lifts
10 side leg lifts with right leg
10 side leg lifts with left leg
30 second plank
20 second right side plank
20 second left side plank

Today I headed over to my friend Carole's to do some yoga. We did one of the "Yoga by Adriene" you tube videos. They are just great! and there is a wide range of videos, some gentle and easy, some more intense. Today was gentle and easy. It felt really good after yesterday's miserable flare up. And it's always more fun to do these things with someone else.

After yoga we sat and talked for an hour over cups of Egyptian Chamomile tea. With Balance and Bergamot in the diffuser it was so nice and relaxing. Especially after the lovely yoga set. Tea with a friend is such a treat. Then I came home to eat half a chicken sandwich, cucumbers and an apple. I've lost another pound this week which brings the total to 5 pounds. Only 55 more to go lol. Hopefully I can start losing more than 1 pound a week! But really I'm happy that it's coming off. Slow and steady wins the race, right?

Simple days....the book i'm reading and what I'm going for these days!

Much love
C    xoxo