Today is suppose to be the day we start back to school. The temperatures outside are miserable. Although we officially broke the streak of 90s we have had for two weeks, the heat is still oppressive. I have never been a summer heat kind of person, so for us to spend part of each day in the air conditioned basement studying doesn't bother me too much. We also avoid the crowds of young people who are out of school for the summer.

As I was discussing the start of school yesterday with a homeschooling friend, I got "the look". The look that says, " you don't take a summer break, have you lost your mind". Let me ask you this, as we challenge the "norms" for everything else in our world. Why does "summer break" have to be in the summer? Why do schools break at this particular time? Well one reason is the heat, especially here in the Southern United States. While my home in the North GA mountains is much cooler than the one I grew up in; the south can be really warm in the summer time. Having children swelter away in classrooms during the summer time makes them ill tempered, cranky, tired, and generally hard to deal with.

The thing I love most about being a homeschooling mother is that I get to have input and control over what my kids study, when we work, and when we take breaks. I love to say "whatever works for you." That is truly how I feel about all areas of homeschooling! Whatever curriculum, whatever breaks, whatever hours, whatever projects, whatever! Don't let the world define you, even if they don't understand you. You are ultimately responsible for the people your kids become so don't let "the norm" shape them for you!

Off to get busy!


Stockings and Sewing, where did I go????

Well today I started back to homeschooling and was shocked to realize that 3 weeks of my life are gone with nothing more of a haze of embroidery designs to recall for it. Last year I started a 2nd Etsy shop which features all Christmas items. I sold 10 stockings and felt like I was losing my mind. This year I sold 35 stockings and I did lose my mind. :) But it is behind me now and I am happy to create lovely items that are in houses around the US. From everywhere from South Carolina to North Dakota and I hope that they are all hanging in homes bringing smiles to faces. I mailed the last 2 this morning!

I am hoping that each and everyone of you have a lovely Christmas! I hope the holiday and the new year bring you lots of love and joy!



Okay two things to talk about today...

Candida Yeast, I thought I had you beat, but you are back and I only fell off the wagon a little bit. So as of today I am back to diligently avoiding the chocolate, sugar, and heavy carbs. I had settled into my new body with a much less swollen stomach, clear skin, etc...... but it didn't take long for me to see that I still have to be careful and watch it.

I am going to be creating a new blog soon! Title yet undecided, but I have some thoughts. So here is the summary! My paternal grandmother Gertrude Cook was an amazing cook. She had 7 children to feed, and at times additional family members who lived with them. So she was accustomed to feeding a crowd. When she passed away there was great family debate over her recipe boxes... A few years back I asked my Daddy if I could take them and type them all up into a cookbook for the family. As I begin to look at them I found that some of them were just a list of ingredients and the direction "Bake".....obviously she knew what she was doing and didn't need any further direction. This deterred me some from the project because at the time I didn't really have time to figure this out. Lately though I have thought more and more about it. My sister has suggested that I try to make each recipe like "Julie & Julia"....maybe....but I am definitely starting a blog to provide these recipes to the family and world alike.

I am super excited about it and can't wait to get started, so I will give everyone a head's up as soon as I have it ready to go, hopefully you will follow me over on that blog and enjoy the recipes of my youth the way I do.

See you soon!


Candida Yeast....what is going on?

Okay I haven't blogged several days about the Yeast situation. I am going to give a summary of where I am, and what I am still doing.


Don't juice carrots or beets. In fact if you are going to juice, then you need green juices: celery, kale, greens ( turnip and collard), cucumbers, garlic, ginger, parsley....all really good choices.

Juicing is not for the faint of heart. I did it for 4 weeks and it was not fun, but it was healthy...so pick your poison.

Cut out as much sugar, bread, pasta, vinegar and aged foods as you can.

Eat Activia yogurt from the beginning

Take Pro-biotic supplements daily, do your research and invest in quality.

Don't give up, it is going to get a lot worse before it gets better.

Take soda water ( 1 tsp in a cup of warm water) once a day

If you can do coconut oil, or coconut oil capsules....do it and don't be afraid of the yucky feeling it is killing the Yeast.

My results have been amazing. My hands, face, head, etc are completely clear of rash. It will probably be months before the condition of my skin is back to normal, it still looks haggard but it is not cracked or open or even red. Daily application of a thick moisturizer will help that.

For the last 2 weeks I have eaten anything I wanted. Including bread, pasta, sugar,etc..... I am eating it in much more moderation than I was before, but still it is in my diet and not causing any issues! YAY!!!!!

From time to time I will post any changes or things that give me trouble, but for right now all is good.


Other things in my life

So I have blogged so much about diet lately I haven't blogged about anything else.

I have had a very busy couple of weeks, I know some of my friends think I have abandoned them, but it isn't personal there is just so much to do and so much going on.

My family is getting ready to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles and that means cleaning the whole house top to bottom, and buying clothes, and packing clothes.... and lots of work!

In addition we have been going through a huge ordeal with my husbands church, it has literally been like a huge roller coaster of emotions and it has made us question every friendship attached to the church and it is really stressful.

We had a wonderful trip down to my parents for Labor Day weekend. My mother was very sick and I am really concerned about her current and future health. We all love her very much and just want her to be healthy. We had a wonderful time visiting both my parents, my husband's parents, both of our brothers, my cousins, it was awesome. My husband and my son both Kayaked for the first time and loved it. I can't wait to try it myself sometime. I even had a short visit with my Granddaddy. He and my grandmother celebrated 60 years of marriage on September 2 ! I honestly didn't think he would make it to see the day, but he keeps fooling us all.

Since Friday I have been cleaning and purging the house and as slow and tiring as it is it feels wonderful.

Tomorrow night is our Fall Court of Honor for our Boy Scout Troop and my son is set to receive three merit badges and his new leadership position of Den Chief.

So I will be good and ready to run directly into the warm water of the ocean, sit on the beach and listen to the waves for hours and lay in the sun for 2 whole weeks! Even though I continue to work part time even while on vacation, it is still the beach :)

Hope you will all forgive me for being so preoccupied lately....it will get better. Love you all !

Day 26....hmmmm how did that happen

Okay well as you know if you have been reading this blog, I was blogging everyday with my health status and emotional status, etc.... It got a little repetitious, so I skipped several days and I have been trying different things so I am going to just share a summary of what I have been doing and how it is going.

First of all my weight this morning was 194.5 so I have lost around 10-12 lbs on this cleanse. While I did not start this cleanse to lose weight it has been a welcome side effect of the process.

Secondly my diet hasn't varied much from what I had documented prior. Basically vegetable juice in the morning, hummus fresh veggies, meat or salad for dinner. I can tell you I have not intentionally had sugar, bread, pasta since I started this cleanse. I may have ingested some small amounts of sugar through sauces but it has been minimal. For instance on the chicken wings I had for dinner last night.....I did cheat and eat 3 french fries.

I have been emotionally up and down. There are days when I truly believe this is working and I am elated, then I will have a relapse and become depressed. Overall I do see a great improvement in my skin, rash, etc.

Just this week after even more research on the subject, I learned I should not have been juicing the carrots and beets that I was consuming. Which makes sense to me since they are a root crop and have so much natural sugar. I have switched to mainly a green juicing, cucumbers, celery, dark greens.

I have added Activia to my diet in the mornings with my juice. Activia has a lot of good pro biotics which are of a different variety than the Dan Active. I am actually doing both one morning, on afternoon along with a probiotic supplement. I have temporarily stopped the Fish Oil due to some fish allergies I have and the fear that it could contribute to the problem.

I think I have mentioned in the other blogs but just to touch base on it again. I was doing 3tbsp of Coconut Oil orally, I would suffer hot flashes and sluggishness along with a general feeling of yuckiness after taking it. I did some research on Sodium Bicarbonate as an anti fungal, I have started taking 1 tsp in warm water once in the morning and once at night. I have seen huge improvements since starting that.

One thing to note as well is that the rash comes from the yeast die off byproducts. So even though the rash is discouraging, it is actually proof that the yeast is dying away.

My plan is to continue on a complete elimination for about 8 more days. At which point I am going to slowly....very slowly start to add foods back to my diet. While I truly believe I will want to run out and eat a huge pizza and chocolate cake, I am pretty sure I will be gun shy :)

I also plan to continue to juice daily, maybe more than once, because I believe it is much healthier. I also plan to continue the Activia daily to keep the proper flora of the colon.

I will blog again in a few days as this winds down.


Day 14..... I know I skipped some

Weight: 197.5

Health Status: Hands are almost completely healed, as are all other areas of rash. Stomach is less bloated and digestive tract seems more balanced.

Emotional Status: Don't ask! But it isn't related to the diet :).

Diet: Still doing the same sort of diet, when I can't eat at home I have a salad out, with the smallest amount of dressing possible or chicken strips or nuggets from Chick-fil-A where there is less breading and they are cooked in peanut oil.

Now changes I have made that are significant; stopped taking the coconut oil and started taking 1 tsp of baking soda in warm water. The coconut oil was making me have hot flashes and feel real sluggish. I have read amazing things about the baking soda as an anti fungal agent and decided to give it a chance. For 3 days I have been doing 1 tsp of baking soda in warm water and in that time my rash has almost completely healed up. The improvement is amazing!

I am going to continue this until we leave for our upcoming vacation in about 20 days. I will have been on the program for more than 30 days at that point. From there I will begin to slowly add back in carbs and sweets in small doses.

I will be updating as I continue along this path. If you are following because you have the same issues I do, please research the baking soda/ sodium bicarbonate treatments online and form your own opinion.