Happy Christmasing!

December 27, 2008

Hello all!  I hope everyone had a lovely Christmas!  We had a wonderful day, although I’m glad the secrets and stress are over.  We’ve had a great week of having Daddy home all day and he still has another week off! 

I love the last few weeks of December mostly because we get to see people we haven’t seen all year.  We have a good friend who is in the Navy (on a sub-how cool is that?) and he’s usually on leave for a few days around Christmas.  This year he stopped by with some of our other friends who we haven’t seen since last Christmas.  We stayed up late playing poker and just reconnecting.  Ahhhh the joys of the season.  

Friday we rode-tripped to Ames to hang out with my sis and her hubby.  My parents were there too because everyone in the fam is off until ’09.  What fun to just hang around and eat Taco Time with no place to be and no schedule to follow. 

We’ve slept late (yes, really!) every day and lounged in our jammies until 10 or 11 every morning.  Josh and I have caught up on some projects and movies and even hit QDoba once (don’t tell Gavin!)

Monday we’re road-tripping to Iowa City to meet up with some old friends who now live in Oho.  We haven’t seen them in two years and we have each added a boy to our family since the last time we were together.  Our Monday night schedule is more dinner with friends and the boys have a date to spend the night on Tuesday with Kate and Chris while Josh and I gorge ourselves at the Cafe (probably twice-dinner and breakfast the next morning-it’s THAT good). 

Due to some nasty ice and looming snow, I was unable to see one of my dearest friends, Sara.  She lives in Colorado with her sweet hubby and usually make it this way only once or twice a year.  I was so excited to reconnect with her, but safety was definitely an issue so they couldn’t make it all the way into Des Moines.  We’ll definitely plan on July, Sara!

I don’t know why I felt obligated to give you the run down of our schedule lately, but we all feel so peaceful.  Everyone is calm, we’ve had very few meltdowns, and like I mentioned, we are all getting great sleep.  I wish life could be like this all the time.  No worries, no obligations, just time to do whatever whenever.  Well, I guess we can’t have everything we want, I’ll just settle for the peace and calm we have the last few weeks of December. 

2009 is already shaping up to be an excellent year!

Oh, and my meringues DID not turn out.  Apparently we didn’t whip them long enough and they never set up.  My mom made some lovely meringues this evening, so hopefully I can learn from the master. 

I got really excited today because I decided it was officially time to move on to the next stage of our diet.  Nut Butters!  YAY!  I found a seemingly yummy recipe that called for nut butter (we use almond), bananas, eggs, etc, etc.  Since Gavin has a sensitivity to eggs, I decided to replace the eggs with applesauce.  The recipe book I have says 2 eggs=1/2 cup pureed fruit.  Well, apparently this was more fruit than these muffins could handle.  They imploded about halfway through baking!   There seriously was nothing left except the batter baked around the muffin cups.  MMMM….tasty.

Tomorrow, Josh and I are going to try our hand at meringues.  These too have eggs, but just egg whites, so we’re going to see how Gav does with them.  I hear meringues can be very tricky and with my track record, I’ll most likely ruin those too.  I’ll let you know!

And on another food related note, here’s been Gavin’s prayer at bed time for about the last two weeks, “Dear Jesus, thank you for Liam and for El Rodeo and for the QDoba, and for rice and beans.  Thank you that we can have Christmas cookies on Christmas. Amen.”  (Think he misses his favorite restaurants? Poor kid.)

well, not exactly. Christmas is still happening around here and we couldn’t be more excited. For some reason, Gavin thinks he “gets a Christmas cookie on Christmas Day”. I have no idea where he got that from, but he mentions it to me every day, so I’d better find a good egg-free, dairy-free, sugar-free cookie recipe quick (sounds gross, doesn’t it?!)

Actually this post has nothing to do with Gavin or our diet. I just need to vent a little.

So, we pay a little every month for vision insurance and awhile back Josh reminded me I should take advantage of it since we’re paying for it. So, I made an appointment with plans to get new glasses (doctor visit and frames are completely covered under our plan). All I would have to pay for would be lenses. I guess when one doesn’t go to the eye doctor regularly, or in the last 12 YEARS, the doctor seems to think that one would need new glasses AND contacts. If you’ve known me for any length of time or have ever been on an overnight trip with me, you know that I have H-O-R-R-I-B-L-E vision (so bad I can’t even be a candidate for laser surgery-they could blind me).

ANYWAY, my prescription had changed and my contacts should have only lasted me 3 years, not 12. Since my eyes are so bad and apparently a weird shape, I need special contact lenses. Expensive ones.

After my check-up, I was sent to see a little old lady who would fit me with new glasses. She immediately headed to the children’s wall of glasses and proceeded to have me try on hot pink Hannah Montana glasses with stars, red High School Musical ones, and last but not least, electric blue Power Rangers glasses. Apparently I have an overly small face (I guess I’ve been kidding myself all these years). After about 10 pairs of pink, red, and blue plastic glasses, I politely asked her if I could try on some adult frames-I did turn 30 this year. I finally found some, but of course my lenses have to be specially made like my contacts. I am now $453 poorer.

AND it gets worse. The day after my appointment, Roto-Rooter was called out to our house to fix a slow drain and the hot water in our kitchen. We have VERY low hot water pressure in our kitchen and have since we’ve moved in. That’s what you get with 88 year old pipes. Once our drain stopped working, I knew I needed to get someone to finally fix my kitchen problems. $515 later, the poor guy was apologizing up and down, but couldn’t figure out why I still didn’t have hot water(he managed to fix our drain though). He spent an entire day tearing out our basement ceiling and switching out pipes, but to no avail. ARGGGGGGGG! We still don’t have much hot water and are most definitely not going to be spending any more money right now (remember, Gav starts speech therapy in January-WEEKLY).

So, I’m feeling a bit like a Who after waking up on Christmas morning to find that the Grinch had stolen all their lovely gifts, ornaments, and trees.

Yummy to Our Tummy

December 16, 2008

Just thought I’d post a delicious smoothie recipe that we tried from our diet today.

1 ripe banana

1 avacado

1 cup grape juice (for us, this must be Welch’s 100% grape with nothing added)

Blend and serve!

I was a little unsure what the avacado would do to the flavor, but the banana and grape juice definitely overpower the taste and it really just makes the consistency better. It is really filling, and that was all my boys needed for lunch. Easy peasy!

It’s Been a Good Day

December 10, 2008

It’s been a great day, actually. We started off with everyone waking up at 7 (yes, Gav couldn’t fall asleep until 10pm last night which was bad, but he never woke up in the night so we actually got a solid night’s sleep).

We had our second counseling appointment with Grace today and again I have to say how good she is with Gavin. She is so very sweet and get this, she teared up when she heard Gavin talking. He never said much at our last appointment a month ago and this time he was much more talkative (because of the diet, I believe). How sweet of her to care so much that she started to cry!

She also gave us the names of other natural supplements (5-HTP and valerian root-I’ve not heard of either) that may help Gavin stay asleep at night. I could have kissed her! She also agreed to write up a medical diagnosis for Gav’s autism, so hopefully that will help our cause when battling our insurance company.

Everyone’s just been really happy today and I think we’re finally getting over the worst of the yeast die-off.

I finally know what to get everyone for Christmas and that’s a huge weight lifted off my shoulders. And, one of our oldest, dearest friends in the world is coming to stay this weekend and with him comes rest, relaxation, lots of laughs, and probably a good movie . I’m looking forward to just hanging out this weekend and setting Christmas aside just for a few days.

Yay for happy (melt-down free) days!

Is It the Diet Already?

December 6, 2008

A couple of HUGE things. First, we got back from Ames this morning after a lovely pre-screening of Esmerelda (which I highly recommend if you’re in the Des Moines/Ames area). It will NOT disappoint. The cast is wonderful (especially Bill and Hetty), the set design and costumes are magical and there are a ton of cool “theatrics” that I have been sworn not to reveal. Pretty amazing stuff!

ANYWAY, when we got home this afternoon, Gavin ASKED if he could put on his Elmo underwear. If you’ve been following our journey, you’ll remember that I tried this past summer to potty-train Gavin, but by day 2 he would cry and tell me he was all done going potty. Yeah, I was not successful. Every once in a while since then we’ve sat him on the potty, but he’ll sit for a while without going. So you can imagine how excited we were when he brought up wearing his underwear. And get this, HE’S BEEN GOING IN THE POTTY EVERY TIME WE ASK. This has not happened before. He hasn’t had a single accident yet and he is SO proud of himself when he goes. He gets it this time! (The down side is that he’s being rewarded with Skittles that I know are not SCD approved. Hopefully one Skittle at a time won’t do too much damage to our new diet. Fingers crossed.) I’d much rather have him potty trained right now.

The other big thing is that Gav has been spending a lot of time playing with my old doll house lately. He’s actually playing with the people inside, making them go from room to room and they are having conversations with each other. Again this is HUGE because pretend play is not something he normally does.

Is this because of the diet?!