Wednesday, January 06, 2016

New Year, With or Without Sweets

A new year, friends! I haven't even accidentally written 2015 on anything so far, how about you? Small successes.

My girls and I went back to school/work on Monday, feeling not ready and ready (well, them 100% not ready, ha) at the same time. Our break sped by, since we were out of town for much of it. This made it seem short because we didn't have lots of luxuriously empty at-home days to decide what we felt like doing: sledding? skating? movies? playdates? We did get some of those days near the end, but not as many as we would have liked. Ah well. There is also comfort in routine and a schedule, after all. I am always amazed at how quickly everyone adjusts and gets back to "normal." Within two days it all feels familiar and fine.

We are back to EARLY morning wake-ups, homework, and having no time to keep up with the household stuff (me). The girls are also back to Tae Kwon Do after taking autumn off for other things. That feels reassuring and right, also. Their instructor is a gem who deftly and gently inserts life lessons and values into every class in a way that draws the kiddos in; he starts out talking about, say, determination or respect in relation to Tae Kwon Do practice, then generalizes that to how one (should) behave at home with one's parents, or how they apply themselves at school. Gotta love it.

What else? It turned cold and snowy just before Christmas, so we are finally doing things like skating on the corner pond, building snow forts, and running gingerly on icy streets. Since we did get an extra bonus month of non-winter weather in December, I can't really complain. I just hope this doesn't mean winter is going to tack an extra month onto its end and stay cold until June. It hasn't been bad so far, but this weekend the high temp is supposed to be minus two, so there you go. January.

After the hedonistic holidays, I'm back on the wagon of eliminating (= minimizing) sugar and flour (really, most grain-based carbs, which act like sugar in the body) from my diet in a successful attempt to treat my longstanding joint pain. It has worked like a true miracle; I have been absolutely amazed. My hip joints were bothering me so much in the fall that I felt like an old lady and was fairly desperate. (You have to be desperate to voluntarily give up sugar.) After a week or so off sugar, they felt about 75-80% improved. Another week and the pain was gone COMPLETELY and did not return until I'd been chowing down on treats during all of Christmas break. How clearer could that message be from my body, right?? Hello, sugar is a KNOWN inflammatory. It only makes sense that avoiding it would effectively treat joint pain. I'm not perfect, and it's not easy, but it's going pretty well so far and being able to get up in the morning without having achy, creaky hips (not to mention being able to sleep fine at night without tossing and turning because my hips hurt)---and having the arthritis in my toes not even bother me at all---is so, so, so worth it. It's a quality of life issue, for sure.

I think that's about it in terms of life updates. Thrilling, I know.

Truth be told, one of the reasons I haven't posted here much lately, other than having zero time, ha, is that for some mysterious reason I can't get photos to upload off my phone into iPhoto, and it seems boring and off-putting to publish a post that's just a long string of text with no photographs. I'm sorry. I'm sure this is as boring as it gets. I think my mom is still reading, though.

I hope your new year is off to a good start! Give thanks every day for what you have, find joy in some part of every day, and be optimistic about the coming year. It's a clean slate and an open book! Onward. 


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