Monday, May 15, 2017

My Athlete Children



   As a mom I feel like I feed my children a pretty balanced diet. I mean, they will eat pretty much anything and they graze often. So when my seven year old son started having dizzy spells we were at a loss of what was the cause.

  We made several visits to our trusted Pediatrician.  He did several neurological and reflex tests which all yielded normal results. He suggested increasing his electrolytes. I was not quite sure what an electrolyte actually is or how it functioned in the body. Thankfully my husband is quite knowledgeable about these specifics from his triathlon years.

  When the spell hit about a week later, our pediatrician repeated the tests and concluded that it was most likely a combo of things that were going on. ( Doesn't everyone just love a mystery puzzle?) He detected a slight infections deep in the sinus cavity. We started him on a daily allergy treatment along side an antibiotic. We also kept his electrolytes increased.

  That increase got me to start looking at how many calories a kid is actually supposed to be getting on a daily basis according to  U.S pediatric standards. As a grown adult, I know what my needs are. As a mom, I knew what my babies needed. Babies. My babies... They physically aren't babies anymore and their needs have changed. Dramatically, I might add.

  Both of the kids eat pretty much what they want when they want it. I restrict sweets but they know real food is always available for them.They will eat all day long so I was never worried that they weren't eating enough. That was until this dizzy situation with my oldest. Over the past few weeks I have consciously made a note of what, when and how much was being eaten by each kid. It all seemed lagit.

  Puzzled by the food intake I was seeing and thinking it was good, I decided to do a bit of research on what an athletic childs caloric intake need actually is per the American Pediatrics Association. After reading several articles, I was faced with the fact that the kids were indeed short on their daily needs as athletes. Wow, what an eye opener for this Momma!

  Thanks to HeathlyChildren.org  and Nutrition.gov I was able to see what my children need.

     I am such a visual girl that it is difficult for me to grasp quantity in just a written form. Someone can tell me 6 oz of grains and I struggle with what that actually means.


                                                                     Naturally I started to compare an apple to a measurement of a cup. Okay, That is any easier one to sort through, but what about that 6 ounces of grains? Not so easy now to ingest. It could be anything from bread to quinoa, to barley or rice.

More questions started to simmer as I run down my grocery list. Questions like, Is that cooked grains? Does Almond Milk count as dairy? Won't they get constipated if they get 3 cups of cheese a day? Yes, that is where my mind went.

  For today, I have made progress. To learn and actually admit that what I thought was right, really wasn't is a tough pill to swallow. I may not know all of the answers to my questions, but you can bet that I will find out. I will have visual ques to guide my inquisitive brain down this new path of mothering.


Helpful Sites;
https://www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/dietary-guidelines

https://www.healthychildren.org

https://www.aps-spr.org/

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3805623/

https://health.gov/dietaryguidelines/2015/guidelines/chapter-2/a-closer-look-at-current-intakes-and-recommended-shifts/

https://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/educational/wecan/downloads/calreqtips.pdf


Saturday, December 10, 2016

One Taco Two Taco





                My family does not have the luxury of eating out regularly.  Since we have birthed the children, we always seem to have a tough time managing the kid’s needs and getting to eat our food while it is still warm.  There is usually some type of spilled mess that I feel the need to clean up before our server spots the flowing river that will make its way down the table, pooling on the floor.  And inevitably either my husband or I have to remove one child or the other from the restaurant because they wanted or did not want some food item touching another food item on their plate and they proceed to have a screaming fit to express their dislike.  We are a hot mess with young children and we know it, so we opt out of most of the trendy new openings where people can easily see our crazy life.
                When I was invited to attend a soft opening of One Taco Two Taco I was truly excited and figured I could make a date night out of it for my husband and I.  Sadly, we did not make it because one of the kids was not feeling well.  I shrugged off the opening and I did not really think too much about it until the day that One Taco Two Taco opened to the public.
                It was lunch time, I was home and the kids were in school.  Although I was in the midst of school work, I seized the moment and bolted out the door to eat some tacos.  I am super picky when it comes to food. Picky as in the ingredients quality has to be something I would have chosen to cook with myself.  The recipe needs to be totally authentic or a completely new, twisted version. I mean, I do not want a Taco Bell type taco from a locally owned eatery.  Not only am I selective with the food itself but the environment in which I will be eating is also important.  The music playing in the background, the color of the lighting, the ability to see what is happening or not happening in the kitchen will all influence my experience.
                There are always, always some hic-ups during the first day of a new business.  Whether it is computer glitches, an item left off the plate or the air conditioning goes out, something will go wrong.  Knowing this through personal experience, I kept my expectations realistic and just wanted to eat something as fuel for my body and not for my soul.
                I was pleasantly surprised by the scene.  The d├ęcor was fresh and swanky without being over the top.  There is a sort of chic, modern atmosphere with cool toned colors, yet warm lighting.  It made me feel comfortable and impressed me more than I thought it would.
The server was friendly and quickly took my order of Carne Asada Fries, which by the way is a healthy serving, and two of their specialty tacos.  The tacos by themselves would have been sufficient to feed my husband. 

My food arrived and holy smokes it had an amazing presentation.  The server placed a piping hot, cast iron trivet on my table.  It was piled high with pencil thick fries, marinated beef cuts and fresh pico-de-gallo.  The two tacos were of the same quality of pleasantness. You could clearly tell the food was fresh and cooked with care.  To say that I enjoyed the flavors would be an understatement.
One Taco Two Taco has definitely earned my business.  If I were to recommend a restaurant it would be this one.  The family friendly, yet modern feeling dining room with excellent, affordable food is a win for me and my family. I hope you and your family will enjoy One Taco Two Taco as much as I do.

                

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Woah!

  Wow! It has been a really long time since I have written a blog post. Do you think I should jump back in and get to writing something?




  I was able to travel to see my stepmother and brother in Germany last fall. It was really nice to be home. somethings were exactly the same and others were very different.
  That is how life is though, ever changing and yet something never change. Life is funny that way. It is one stationary yet evolving progression into the future.  Maybe it is not life that is changing but me that is. Yes, I think that is more likely.
There have been big changes for my bubble over the last year-ish. I went back to Germany for a visit. My family moved to Lexington. My daughter started kindergarten and I am finishing up my first semester at Midlands Technical College. And because my plate was not full enough, I decided to start substituting at the kid's school.  Life has been interesting to say the least.
 Anyway, Here are a few pictures I took while abroad. My brother, his fiance and I hiked about 12 kilometers the day I took the first two pictures. Once we reached the top of the mountain we climbed all these crazy high stairs for the most rewarding view.  This picture does not portray the beauty as it was seen, but at least you can get a feel for how breath-taking it was.







Monday, May 11, 2015

Out Of My Zone

Lately I have been trying new things. New foods, cooking techniques and now a book review.

I'm not really sure why I decided to review a book. I mean let's get real here, I can't even complete most daily tasks let alone something that will take a few weeks to do. But I must say, I'm so happy that I am doing it. I say "am" because I'm not technically finished reading it. However, I am finding myself reciting the authors words and that's kind of big for me.

LooseThe Cape - Realities from Busy Modern Moms and Strategies to Survive written by one of our own Columbia mother's, Alexa Haddock Bigwarfe and her friend Kerry Riverra is a reality driven perspective that is not only honest but an eye opener.
With help from mom's around the country these ladies have nailed situations that new mom's and experienced mom's alike, find them selves in. They also provide reasurrence through their own twisted mom comedy. I wish this book had been around five years ago. I'm looking forward to finishing these last few chapters and I think every parent should read this.  Here's is the link to buy the book. I promise you won't be disappointed!


http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B00UWCLY9M?ie=UTF8&redirectFromSS=1&pc_redir=T1&noEncodingTag=1&fp=1 

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

The Local Movement



  You might have noticed the local food movement sweeping over the Midlands, and the rest of South Carolina for that matter. I mean its kind of hard to miss the Soda City Farmers Market on Main Street, or the that list of must-eat-at-while-in-Columbia  restaurants just so happen to source most of their ingredients locally. And hearing about Columbia Food Tours tasting their way through said hot spots on those beautiful January days just solidifies the thirst for local food.

  What you might not have noticed though, is that the movement has touched more than the local consumer or the small farmer. Large farms, the USDA, schools, and many more entities are joining the conversation. Each looking to learn, incorporate techniques and assist in making foods more accessible.

  I attended the Agri Biz Expo in Florence and was amazed at what I saw. At first I saw the typical "Red Tape enforcer' government employee, the ginormous farmer that just wanted to make a buck and of course the salesman. Avoid eye contact at all costs I thought to myself or I would be thousands of dollars in debt in the matter of ten minutes. Non the less, I was hyped to be there.

  It didn't take long before my heart was warmed and there was change occurring in what I was seeing. I started to see the people. The government point person became this really knowledgeable lady that wholeheartedly wanted to help people navigate all the hoops that are in place. The amount of helpful information that she gave was like hitting a Vegas Jackpot. Then I saw that large farmer. That farmer happens to be from the midlands area. He was sitting in on a Soil Seminar that Dr. Kloot from USC was giving. With it being the year of the soil endorsed by the United Nation, it was refreshing to see that farmer learning a better way to tend to the soil. And as it turns out, that farm has put in place some amazing organic practices. Now we have the salesman, which didn't try to sell me anything. Not even an idea that their product was better than xyz. They just wanted to help solve problems that most farms run into at one point. Actually one even offered to help me with some writing contacts. Finally we have the schools. Dave Lamie of Clemson gave a fantastic workshop on Choosing Wholesale Markets for Local food Products. (I have some handouts if your interested.) And the Florence Extension is looking at building a Food HUB  among other projects. How awesome is that?


  I walked away from the expo being able to see the local food movement happening at the state level by local people. I'm so grateful to see the love these people have for our great state and local food.




Saturday, December 13, 2014

The Midlands Food Alliance

  Over the past few months I have been working with other local people who share the love of supporting our local farmers.
  
  We have come together and created The Midlands Food Alliance. The press release states our ideas. 

​"We don’t have a concrete map or understanding of the local food system. There are gaps and challenges that are not currently defined. We have people that care about local food, but we don’t have a network built or communication among the people that care about the local food system.

Local food supports our health, the local economy and local farmers, it tastes better, is resilient and sustainable, and independent from big corporate farming and the food industry. It provides food security for the region, which promotes homeland security and secures water for the future. Caring about local food will hopefully influence future generations to make better food choices and will connect children back to their roots. Local food is better for the environment, connects us back to our land, and will help preserve our beautiful S.C. wildlife and traditions, such as hunting and fishing. We want to work toward a fair, secure, sustainable, dependable, healthy local food system.

If we are going to support local food and learn how to improve the local food system, we need to map it out and understand it better. That way, we’ll know where our strengths and weaknesses are so that we work toward a healthier, more accessible local food system as a community. We need to raise awareness of the local food system and advocate and educate about the gaps and weaknesses we find in our local food system, so that we can make it better. Creating a network that cares about local food and opening communication is important. Connecting local farmers to each other and all aspects of the local food system is also important, as well as connecting local farmers to resources and information.

    We have an opportunity to learn about how to improve our local food system. Local food boosts the local economy, decreases the carbon footprint of food, is better for the environment, and connects back to the land, where we belong. The Midlands Food Alliance is coming together to map our food system. We are looking for members right now."

The Midlands Food Alliance

If you are interested, please get involved. 


Or 

Sustainable Midlands  (803) 381-8747

  

Monday, November 17, 2014

Navigating Disney

Wow! Finding real food in Disney has alway been the stick in my throat. The whole Dinning Plan thing burns me too. Trying to navigate through a week can be just a tad bit irritating to say the least. 
 
 This time I decided to let it go and just do the best I can. I mean after all it is vacation and your supposed to eat junk, play late and laugh a lot, right? 

 We got in yesterday, later in the day but in time for supper. We are staying at The Wilderness Lodge so we ate here. 

 I was truly suprised to see a pan seared quinoa cakes dish along with several other appatizing choices. Someone has obviously made an executive decision in the food department. I ultimately decided on a smorgasbord of meat that wasn't quite South Carolina BBQ, but still quite delicious. 

 Today we headed into Epcot for a special Princess lunch. Again, wonderful selections offered in the Norweigan eatery! Seriously!! I'm not sure what has happened that made Disney finally get with it, but I like! 

 Thanks for making some changes Disney! I can't wait to share what other goodies I find this week :)