Posts Filed Under Health

Mid-July Updates

by bosssanders on July 15, 2015 with no comments

Outside my window…
It’s STEAMY hot with ninja mosquitoes.

Going outside equals 39,934,387 mosquito bites.  SERIOUSLY?!

Thank goodness for this mosquito soap (more about it at the bottom of the post)!

I am thinking…

I never updated about my weightloss/health journey!  ACK!

Several months ago, I began a journey to better health. I was at one of the lowest points of my health and I had become uncomfortable in my own skin. Daily nausea, bleeding for 45 days straight, light-headed, and extreme fatigue… It’s hard to be the mom you want to be when you struggle to just get out of bed. After a lot of research,I jumped into a nutritional journey. Within 2 weeks, I could both feel AND see a difference. Inches melted off, I gained energy, my hormones became balanced, and I began to look and feel like the old me. I lost 15 lbs in 30 days and took my life back. I’m B-A-C-K y’all. And better than ever!!

I am thankful…

71.  For fresh summer bounty – peaches and strawberries
72.  Summer days with rainbow chalk, sprinklers, sand, grill-outs and water
73.   Peach milkshakes
74.  Lunch with my mama
75.   Little girls, spinning and swaying in glittered gowns

In the kitchen

We’ve been trying some new recipes, and this is a new favorite!!
Chicken Broccoli Cheese Casserole

5 frozen chicken breasts, cooked and shredded
4-5 cups broccoli florets
2 cans cream of chicken soup
8 oz cream cheese, cut into blocks
3 cups shredded cheese
corn flakes to cover
4 T butter, melted

Heat oven to 350 degrees Farenheit.  Mix all but last 2 ingredients.  Spread out in 9×13 dish.   Cover in crushed cornflakes and drizzle melted butter.  Cook in oven for 30-35 minutes, or until heated through.

Serve over rice!

…there was also this yumminess…

Warm brownie topped with fudge sauce, fresh strawberries, and whipped cream!

Easy Fudge Sauce:

1/2 c sugar
2 T cocoa
1/8 tsp salt
1 1/2-2 T butter
1/4 c water (more or less just to make a stir-able consistency)
1/4 tsp vanilla extract

Combine first 3 ingredients in saucepan.  Add enough water to make a stir-able consistency.  Add butter to mixture.  Bring to a boil over medium heat, stirring constantly.  Let boil for one minute (still stirring!).  Remove from heat.  Add vanilla extract.  Enjoy!!

I am reading…

Teacher’s Manuals!

Favorite Things…

Our family recently discovered a new business called Southern Suds.

And, I want ALL. THE. THINGS.!!!

We recently discovered MOSQUITO SOAP!!

This soap is ah-mazing!  Simply rub it on your skin (no shower needed) to keep those annoying buggers away!!  We cut ours up and each kid gets a cube of soap to apply.  This has become one of our summer essentials!  Great for the ballpark, camping, or…just playing in the yard!  At only $7, it’s a bargain that you can’t miss!!


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Week One, Days 1 and 2 – Goals, Workouts, Health

by bosssanders on February 22, 2015 with no comments

So, here we go.

I’m probably at one of the lowest points (barring first trimester pregnancy) of my health.  For MONTHS – I’ve suffered from weakness, tiredness, nausea, and hormones that shifted so much that for 1 1/2 months, I bled.  That came with it’s own side effects.  After MANY tests, we have an idea of what probably sparked the confusion and chaos in my body.  Turns out, it really does matter what we put into our bodies and how we treat them.

After getting a little of my strength back, I’m ready to move further down the journey to health.  I’m setting small goals.  As I reach each one of them, I will create a momentum and be able to reach larger ones.

My top 3 GOALS for WEEK 1:
1.  Drink 1 GALLON  (16 cups) of water each day.

(I drink 2 of these each day)

2.  Add CLEAN nutrition (soy-free, gmo-free, aspartame-free, whey-free) to my body.  This nutrition right now comes in the form of CLEAN smoothies loaded with healthy things my body needs (my nausea gets in the way of being able to handle much extra at this point.)

3.  Workout each day.  –I’m not worried about for how long at this point…5 or 15 minutes.  The point is that I’m doing it each day.  Each day, pushing myself a little further.  And, something more than a little walking. I need to build up my strength, but pushing too hard too fast will do me no favors if it sets me back on the couch for 2 weeks!

And… to get through the week.   It seems I’ve taken on a cold (the kiddos have it, as well, so I know it’s not just detoxing).
I’m also working on detoxing my brain… writing more and spending more time studying the Bible and meditating in prayer.  Creativity really releases so much for me.


Whole30 Day 7

by bosssanders on September 7, 2012 with 2 comments

I’ve been using Paleo and Whole30 relatively interchangeably, because in my head I equate them to ALMOST the same.  But, I thought I might give a little more info here.

First, there are 3 main courses, if you will, on ways to go down this path —

Primal, Paleo, and Whole30.

Primal is no grains, no white sugar (but you can have honey, stevia, etc it seems), fruits and veggies from good sources (organic and the like), and meat that is grass fed/organic/no additives.  And, cheese.

Paelo is basically primal minus the cheese.

Whole30 is like Paleo/Primal but NO CHEESE and NO SUGARS from stevia/honey/the like.  And, also a little stricter on certain additives.

Today is day 7 for us.  I have to say it’s probably my hardest yet.  Our menu list and ingredients are beginning to dwindle down (time for another grocery trip!) and when I look at the fresh veggies, I am just not seeing creations in my head today.  Probably because I’m hungry and tired and have nothing on back up like I’ve been trying to do.  So, today, my cravings are front and center for me.  Surprisingly, it’s not sugary goodness (although that sounds yum too) – it’s mostly pizza and quesadillas with queso.  –Which, surprises me a LOT.

I really thought I’d be writhing on the floor from sugar withdrawals.  I also didn’t think I was so attached to BREAD/GRAINS.  Interesting.  I keep craving them.

I find it very interesting that, we as a society, are so driven by food…me included.  We let food drive us…we dream about it, think about it, let it dictate our plans.  It’s really weird!  This food that’s just supposed to be fuel for our bodies has become some sort of obsession for us.

I have found myself really considering what to do… for example… we have 2 weddings this month.  Do we go ahead and eat or do we bow out of the reception (this is most likely not a gluten free/grain free/dairy free/sugar free thing we’re talking about.  I’m talking about fluffy yummy icing and thick sauces and cheese)?  Or, do we look like goobers and bring lunch boxes (I’m vetoing this one here and now).

What do you do?

What would YOU do?

filed under Health

Hello, Paleo!

by bosssanders on August 31, 2012 with 2 comments

My husband and I have been quietly watching all of the buzz about the Paleo (and other) lifestyles.  We read and we watch, and after much thought decided to take the 30 day challenge TOGETHER.  We are excited to start, although we don’t take it lightly as it means there will be a LOT of changes.

With Paleo, the focus is mostly on fruits and veggies (minus a few), organic and grass-fed meats, and mushrooms.

Unfortunately, we have had a hard time saying goodbye to some things we KNOW to be bad for us: sweets, lots of cheese/dairy, grains, etc.  And, while we know some Paleo folks allow cheese in their diets, we won’t for this 30-day experiment.  We also will not Paleo-ify desserts since it’s something we both struggle with.

The Whole30 site says it well:

Certain food groups (like sugar, grains, dairy and legumes) could be having a negative impact on your health and fitness without you even realizing it. Are your energy levels inconsistent or non-existent? Do you have aches and pains that can’t be explained by over-use or injury? Are you having a hard time losing weight no matter how hard you try? Do you have some sort of condition (like skin issues, digestive ailments, seasonal allergies or fertility issues) that medication hasn’t helped? These symptoms may be directly related to the foods you eat – even the “healthy” stuff. So how do you know if (and how) these foods are affecting you?

Our hopes at the end of 30 days?  We hope to get out of our cooking rut and to learn new ways to cook and enjoy foods that are GREAT for us.  We hope to heal our bodies – for us, this isn’t about weight-loss.  But, I am curious to see if it helps my skin, makes me feel less tired after 2 pm, helps him with his ADD, and just … changes on a cellular level, even if we can’t see it.

I’d be ecstatic if, at the end of 30 days, we no longer crave sweets as much and are able to take away some great new (to us) ways of using healthy foods.  I don’t foresee us leaving out cheese forever beyond the 30 days, but we’d both love to be broken from the habit of having it covering EVERYTHING we eat!  So, I guess we are hoping for some in-between but with a shift towards healthier living.

I’m looking forward to documenting our journey – and if you’d like to jump in, please let me know!!

filed under Health

Beginner’s Yoga for Moms (A Guest Post by Katherine Mitchell)

by bosssanders on August 20, 2012 with 8 comments

At the end of my first yoga session, I believe I said something like:

“If everyone in the world did yoga a few days a week, there would be no more war.”

Maybe that’s a slight exaggeration. Still, I’m continually amazed at the calming and relaxing effects of the ancient eastern practice. No matter what type of day I’m having, a half-hour of yoga leaves me, quite simply, serene.

Yoga focuses on a balance of movement and stillness, accompanied by deep breathing and targeted stretching. While the poses increase balance, flexibility and strength and release muscle tension, it’s the breathing and concentration that promote mental and emotional calm. Experiences such as moving under water, getting a massage and even light napping are often evoked.

The idea of napping, even if simulated, ought to be enough to entice most moms to give yoga a try. The following basic poses will stretch your neck, shoulders and back, and provide an oasis of peace at any point of your day.

Wondering when to sneak yoga in, especially if you have a child or three competing for your attention? It’s easier than you might think. Rather than trying to do a half-hour at once, try two or three ten minute sessions before the kids wake up and after they’re in bed. Nap time or reading time, depending on the kids’ ages, are also great. If you can’t seem to catch a few minutes without them, just have the little ones do yoga with you!

Note: As with any physical activity, it is possible to injure yourself doing yoga. It’s best to consult a health care professional before starting a serious yoga practice, and to work under the supervision of a certified yoga teacher who can confirm that you’re doing the poses safely and correctly. Wear comfortable clothing, have bare feet and use a yoga sticky mat. Be sure not to eat or drink much in the hour before exercising.

Easy Pose

A great way to begin your routine, Easy Pose is basically sitting cross-legged on the floor (often called “Indian style”) with really good posture.

  1. Sit down with your legs bent at the knees and your feet pulled in toward your buttocks.
  2. Straighten your entire spine and hold your head upright.
  3. Rest the heels of your hands on your knees.
  4. Concentrate on relaxing your legs, arms and neck while holding your spine straight and breathing deeply into your abdomen, which expands with the inhale and draws in with the exhale.


Mimicking an angry cat and heavy cow are apparently fabulous for stretching and strengthening your back muscles.

  1. Come on to all fours with your hands under your shoulders and your knees under your hips.
  2. On an inhale, tilt your hips toward the ceiling and turn your gaze upward, letting your spine fall into a gentle arch.
  3. On the exhale, bring your spine up to reverse the arch. Turn your hips down and let your head hang. Push with your arms to get a good shoulder stretch.

Low Lunge

A nice Low Lunge stretches and strengthens your thighs and helps relax hips that are tight from sleeping between kids and pushing strollers.

  1. From all fours, bring your right leg forward to place your feet between your hands, keeping your knee right above your heel.
  2. Inch you left leg back, with toes curled under, so that the knee comes off the ground and your leg is as straight as you can make it.
  3. Concentrate on keeping your feet hip-width apart (not in line like you’re on a tightrope), pushing the left leg straight and keeping the right knee over the right heel.
  4. Come back gently to all fours, take a breath, and repeat with the left leg bent in front and the right leg stretched back.

Downward Facing Dog

This inverted pose stretches the back and elongates the spine. The more you can straighten your legs in the pose, the more it stretches them as well.

  1. From all fours, curl your toes under and push on them to bring up your knees and hips.
  2. Approach an upside-down V shape with straight arms and legs and feet flat on the floor (if you can’t get your legs straight that’s fine. Be gentle with yourself).
  3. Push with your arms to have a long, straight spine. Imagine trying to bring your shoulder blades together and tipping your hips to the ceiling.
  4. Adjust the placement of your hands and feet on the mat to achieve the greatest comfort while holding the pose.

Tree Pose

Tree Pose works on your balance and focus, and gives a nice stretch to the entire length of your body. Don’t be afraid of falling – it’s easy to bring your foot back to the ground if you feel wobbly.

  1. From Downward Facing Dog, walk your hands back toward your feet, and slowly roll up like a rag doll, beginning at the base of your spine and bringing your head up last.
  2. Center yourself, then shift your weight to your left foot and straighten the left leg.
  3. Bring up your right foot to grab your ankle.
  4. Place your right foot against the side of the left knee or at the top of the inner left thigh.
  5. Push your right foot against your left leg while pushing your palms together in front of your chest.
  6. With your back straight, bring your arms up to point the pals to the ceiling.
  7. Focus on stretching in two directions at once, getting straighter, taller and increasing balance.
  8. Gently bring your arms down and return your right foot to the floor. Repeat with the left foot up.

Child’s Pose

When you need to rest after some of the more demanding poses, Child’s Pose is good for taking a few breaths and relaxing your neck and back.

  1. Gently lower yourself from standing, bring your knees to the floor and sit on your heels.
  2. Leave your arms stretched forward, and push them out along the floor as you bend at the waist.
  3. Bring your forehead to the floor and relax completely.

Final Relaxation

Fully relaxing your body is a wonderful way to end a workout, and helps to clear your mind before returning to your day.

  1. Lay flat on your back, palms facing upward and feet relaxed outward.
  2. Concentrate on relaxing every part of your body, beginning with your toes, feet, lower legs, knees, thighs, hips, etc…
  3. When you relax your head, be sure to loosen your jaw, lips and eyes.
  4. Once you’re fully relaxed, stay motionless and clear your mind, simply being still for several minutes.
  5. After a while, begin to move slowly, working up to sitting and finally standing.

Making these slow, purposeful movements and holding the strong poses will leave you with a sense of accomplishment and clarity. Try doing them once or twice a week, and eventually, you may find yourself making time for yoga every day.

Author Bio:

This guest post is written by Katherine E. Reilly Mitchell, who is a freelance writer for, a site that provides help for single moms who are struggling financially. She also maintains a personal blog at


Kale Chips – A recipe!

by bosssanders on April 27, 2012 with 1 comment

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Wash and dry Kale leaves – then, separate leaves from middle vein and tear leaves into 1-2 inch pieces.  Cover a pan with parchment paper or tin foil.  Spray with a little olive oil (we have some in a squirt bottle) and drizzle with about 1 tsp salt or to taste.

Cook for 10 minutes.


Note:  For those of you who like spice or more flavor, feel free to experiment with your favorite herbs and seasonings…and then come back here and let us know what you experimented with and how they turned out!

This is a great recipe INSTEAD of potato chips!!

filed under Food and Drink, Health
tagged with

Just A Journey

by bosssanders on April 27, 2012 with no comments

We’re on our way to healthier eating.  It’s a journey…

I know better than to jump in at full force ALL. AT. ONCE.

Some of you have been keeping up with the ongoing conversation over HERE.  (For those of you who haven’t been to my site’s FB page yet, go!  Lots of great extras that I don’t put up on here!)

I love that it’s not just me wanting to do better!  So, many of us have chosen to accept the MISSION of more wholesome eating.

Here’s what we have covered so far:

MISSION #4: Choose 100% WHOLE WHEAT products (with no high fructose corn syrup)… so… breads, tortillas, buns, etc. UNLESS YOU ARE GLUTEN-SENSITIVE!!

(and a recap)

Mission#3: Nix the veggie and canola oil for coconut and virgin olive oil (see mission 3′s post for complete list)

Mission #2: butter instead of margarine

Mission #1: no soda!

(Complete missions are listed on the FB page with more info!)

And then, I found some really awesome links!

  • The dirty dozen and clean 15 list (Top things to buy organic and the things that don’t matter quite as much…great for stretching your budget!) HERE
  • Voting with your dollars…how much organic really costs HERE
  • List of healthy breads HERE
  • The truth about nasty dyes HERE and HERE

There’s so much more on the Facebook page, I’d love to have you join the conversation!  See you there!


Dear You

by bosssanders on April 21, 2012 with 2 comments

(This post is geared at NO-ONE in particular, and yet to EVERYONE whom it applies.)

Dear You in the corner with your snide remarks about my parenting philosophies…

You, who balked when you found out I don’t vaccinate my children and mouthed off words like “pack immunity” and “putting her children in danger…”

You, who made fun of me when I was insistent that there be no smoking around myself or my children…

You, who laughed when I said no chocolate/soda, and tried to give it to them anyways…

You, who think I’m ridiculous for trying to buy mostly organic and cut out additives, excess sugar, dyes, and other unhealthy things from my children’s diet…

I don’t owe you a thing, much less an explanation, but I want to be very clear…


They are not YOURS.  God entrusted them to my husband and I and we have promised to do everything in our power to keep them safe and healthy.  I don’t judge everyone who has different parenting philosophies; we are all just doing the best we know how (most of us, anyhow).

I have been very diligent with my research and I refuse to ignore the statistics and findings.  I do not make decisions lightly and I definitely am not one to jump on fads just because they seem “cool.”  I seek information and as information changes, I reserve the right to change my opinions and views.  Unfortunately, I am not my own research team, so I can not provide myself with all of the answers I want.  I do the best I can with what I have.

The choices we make regarding our children are not easy.  Lazy people do not dedicate hours to researching and checking the resources for said research.  Lazy people do not seek ways to contribute to the income in order to help make these changes.  Lazy people do not try to find creative ways to not disrupt their family and to still implement said changes.

For me, this IS a big deal.

I don’t think it’s funny when others make snide remarks.  I don’t think it’s funny when people know where I stand and still hand my child a candy bag larger than their head.  Or, when I specifically say NO CANDY and they reach right past me to give my child … candy.

I am not a mean mom.  I do not hate my children.

I love my children.  I love my children so much that I have made countless sacrifices to do what’s best… FOR THEM.

My children are in no way neglected and they are not losing out.  They DO get occasional “treats” – but those need to come from ME.  Not you.  At least, not unless you asked me first.

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard “Well, we did this and my kids are fine…” or “Well, my parents did this, and I turned out okay!”


I mean, seriously, what do you want me to say?  People drive like idiots in cars all day long and some don’t get in wrecks.  Some do.

My point is this…


I don’t judge you.  I really really don’t.  Whether your kids are little or grown up, I don’t judge what you do or did as a parent.

I mean, really… I don’t have the time or energy to even judge you or figure out what’s right for your family!!  I’m just trying to do what’s right for mine.

It’d be nice if as parents, we could SUPPORT each other instead of tear each other down.

Thankfully, I don’t personally know any people who think, “I’m going to have kids so I can do my best to SCREW them up!!”    We are all doing the best we can with what we have and what we know.

But, for those of you who can’t support my husband and I… for those of you who want to make snide remarks and do things behind my back (or in front of my face) that go completely against what you know I believe…

Then, you probably don’t really need to be a part of our lives.

There, I said it.

I want people who will respect us.  Our decisions.  Our well-being.  Not by your definition, but by ours.  I don’t need people who all agree and think just like me…I don’t need approval on how to raise my children…I just need respect and understanding.



PS – Thanks to all of the people who have chosen to respect and honor our decisions.

filed under Health, Parenting

Top 10 Reasons to Avoid Sugar and Refined Grains

by bosssanders on April 15, 2012 with no comments

1.  Sugar is the primary dietary cause of the obesity epidemic.
Fat doesn’t make you fat.  But sugar that turns into fat will.

2.  Sugar causes hormonal and metabolic imbalance.
Swinging insulin and cortisol levels in the body, which decrease then increase blood sugar, not only cause your system to crash but set up a cascade of abnormal hormone functions that lead to premature aging and illness.

3.  Sugar is your fast track to diabetes.
On the Standard North American Diet, it is only a matter of time before insulin receptors burn out, unable to handle the onslaught of sugar.

4.  Sugar increases the acidity of the body.
All disease thrives in acidic environments.

5.  Sugar causes inflammation.
Inflammatory enzymes are elevated on higher-sugar diets.  Inflammation is at the heart of 98 percent of disease.

6.  Sugar is the primary reason for high cholesterol.
Your body’s innate healing system, which uses cholesterol, goes into high gear when the body is traumatized at the cellular level by high sugar, insulin, and inflammation.  The solution to high cholesterol is not to lower it forcefully but to remove the interference in the body causing it to rise in the first place.

7.  Sugar leads to heart disease.
Elevated inflammation in the arteries increases the risk of high blood pressure, hemorrhage, stroke, and heart attacks.

8.  Sugar is an anti-nutrient.
Your body’s expenditure to manage sugar is greater than the energy it gains from it.  If you think you are better off eating a chocolate bar, or piece of white bread, than going hungry – think again.

9.  Sugar is a known toxin.
Like all toxins, your body is constantly trying to eliminate it from the bloodstream.  You can assist your body by not giving it more sugar to handle.

10. Sugar promotes cancer.
Feeding cancer cells their primary fuel is like pouring gas on a fire.

Join the conversation and learn more over HERE!

*From Dr. B.J. Hardick, Kimberly Roberto, and Dr. Ben Lerner’s book: The solution to the dangers of Modern Nutrition – MaximizedLiving

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