Friday, April 30, 2010

More photos

A few recent photos:

Yoav at horseback riding lesson (vaulting practice / balance):



Paper dollhouse Yoav made (green area is grass, blue is a pond):



Two of Yoav's recent drawings (bear on top; bicycle on bottom):



Sunset in Netanya:

Felt guy

We made this little guy today from "Feltcraft" by Petra Berger, p. 35. Yoav picked the colors, but that's about it. Oh, and begging me to do it for an hour or two LOL. Actually, we've had a good break from the Feltcraft book. I don't like when he follows me around asking me to make something. Makes me feel edgy, which isn't how I want to feel about making things for him. Today I was pretty pleased with how I handled things - I said I would definitely make him the guy, we'd definitely start on it today, and we'd see how far we get. Luckily (for Yoav), Elie fell asleep just as I put the roast chicken in the oven and everything else for dinner is ready, so I got some focused time to get it made.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Dr. Sears on Autism

I volunteer with API to manage the monthly telecalls. This one (Dr. Bob Sears on Autism) I highly recommend for all parents. I learned on the call that 1 in 68 boys has some degree of autism :(

Even if you see no warning signs with your kid/s, Sears talks about the relationship between the gut and brain. He explained that yeast in the gut releases toxins that get into the brain and cause behavioral and developmental problems. Yeast thrives on sugar, so he said the two best ways to prevent autism are to avoid antibiotics unless absolutely necessary (not related to the sugar issue) and to avoid/minimize sugar. It's the best reason/explanation I've heard yet for minimizing sugar. The talk also makes me more confident in my decision to start GAPS with Yoav. After listening to the talk, I actually want to do it with Elie also. No risk in cleaning out the gut and the possible upside is improved temperament/behavior (good for us parents, but also results in a happier, calmer child)!

Sign up here:
http://org2.democracyinaction.org/o/5590/t/3434/p/salsa/event/common/public/?event_KEY=20386

And, for anyone who hasn't seen my yapping about GAPS, the GAPS diet is here.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Playdough Recipe

My favorite playdough recipe link is broken :( It's from Montgomery County schools, but the recipe seems to be gone, and I didn't think to write it down. Hopefully one of my friends did, but meanwhile I'm going to post this one I just made since it seems close to the MC one - I'll post a review tomorrow after it's played with. We're meeting friends for breakfast tomorrow and I'm hoping that with a big stash of playground, the three boys will stay busy while I get to catch up with M - here's to hoping anyway ;)

The recipe is from here, but I'm taking the liberty to copy it down so I don't lose another good playdough recipe.

Ingredients:
2 cups white flour
1 cup salt (I used kosher salt)
1 tablespoon vegetable oil (I used sunflower oil)
2 1/2 teaspoons cream of tartar
2 cups cold water

Directions:
1. In a medium saucepan, mix together the flour, salt, vegetable oil, cream of tartar, and water.
2. Cook uncovered over medium heat, about 5 minutes. Stir constantly until the dough is the consistency of mashed potatoes.
3. If you store the play dough in a plastic bag or airtight container, it will stay nice and soft and last for years. (This is from the site I copied the recipe from so I can't vouch for this, but hoping it's so!)

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Weekly Meal Plan

I have to wait until next week for more raw milk (and thus raw yogurt), so this week I'll be using non-homogenized, pasteurized yogurt. So since we don't have raw yogurt, I'll skip the yogurt snack for me and Elie (usually we have a raw yogurt / raw egg / strawberry smoothie) as our morning snack.

Drinks
Kombucha for breakfast, ginger tea or bone broth for other meals

Snacks
S1 (morning): fresh seasonal low(er)-fructose fruit and almonds
S2 (afternoon): Rotate between kale chips (made in the dehydrator); avocado and homemade tortilla chips (recipe from Cheeseslave); popcorn
S3 (evening): Oatmeal with honey

Breakfast
Su: Banana bread (NT, p. 483)
M: Pancakes (NT, p. 478)
T: Pancakes (NT, p. 478)
W: Banana bread (NT, p. 483)
R: Banana bread (NT, p. 483)
F: Pancakes (NT, p. 478)
Sa: Banana bread (NT, p. 483)

Lunch
Su-F: Fried egg for Yoav, Over easy eggs for Jer, Em and Elie; banana bread or sourdough bread with butter (homemade almond butter for Yoav); cucumber and tomato salad (NT p. 183)
Sa: Cholent with grass-fed organic oyster blade beef and leftover salads

Dinner (note that fermented foods will be added whenever they seem appetizing - I have pickled beets, pickled carrots and sauerkraut)
Su (at horse ranch after lessons): Leftover cholent - this worked REALLY well - I packed Elie and Yoav some cholent in our stainless steel tiffin jar and they both happily ate it after horseback lessons even though it was just room-temperature! This will be our new standard Sunday night dinner.
M: Yoav: Leftover cholent meat; Em, Jer and Elie: Salmon Croquettes
T: Yoav: Broiled chicken liver; Em, Jer and Elie: Chopped liver (recipe in the Lubavitch Spice & Spirit cookbook) on sourdough bread with sauteed carrots and steamed broccoli
W: Tripoli meat balls, brown basmati rice, sauteed chard
R: Leftover cholent, steamed broccoli
F: Challah, roast chicken, brown basmati rice, lentil salad, sweet potatoes, hummus, babaganoush, cucumber/tomato salad - recipes here
Sa: Leftover salads, cholent, sourdough bread

I don't have the energy to do the To-Do list. I didn't really use it last week anyway. I think I'm used to all the recipes enough that I can plan it out as I go. Just need to motivate myself on the sourdough. The mixer hook on my mixer is broken (actually it's just that my kneading hook is stuck and neither Jer nor I can get it out) so it's more of a pain to make :( Getting up now to make a loaf....

Enki Weekly Schedule

I don't know what's changed, but suddenly Enki is really working for us. I'm sure we'll have ups and downs for as long as we do it, but we're doing better this go-around than any of our previous attempts. I think a big part of it is Yoav's age and maybe finally I have a rhythm that actually works for us. One thing I've done is to cut out any attempt at a Circle. It's working really well to do a simple Vestibular followed by simple Proprioceptive. For Vestibular, I just sing, "Spinning round and round... We're spinning round and round." to a sort of pretty tune I made up. The kids both finally love to spin. Yoav didn't like to when we started Enki (Elie has always enjoyed it) but now he laughs as he spins and does it almost to the point of getting dizzy. We then ground the vestibular with a strong proprioceptive, which is just to hop like bunnies. Enki has a great frog hopping verse, but it seems to work fine for us to just pretend to be bunnies and hop around with feet and hands coming to the ground. After only a week back into Enki, Yoav is already expecting this when we get down from the trampoline.

For this week, the activities will be:
Story: The Midwife and the Cat, from "One Hundred and One Jewish Read Aloud Stories" by Barbara Diamond Goldin
Baking: Banana Bread from Nourishing Traditions - I'll start soaking it on Monday morning and we'll mix and bake on Tuesday
Craft: Finger knitted gnome rug

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Yoav and Elie - Attached at the hip

Yoav and Elie are becoming more and more attached as Elie gets older and they find more in common. They both really love playing together. They climb on eachother, hug eachother, say silly things, play with cars and trucks together, share food, hold hands while we go on walks (and often Elie won't hold my hand, only wants Yoav's), etc. We were in the car tonight after dinner and Elie was crying b/c he was really tired and Yoav wanted to help him relax (ha - funny given my last post LOL). So Yoav started saying silly things - "Unc Dave motor-cycle" (he says it in the same voice that Elie says it - for some reason this has become a funny thing they say back and forth) and a few other things. Then when the crying continued, Yoav said he loved Elie and asked Elie if he loved Yoav, to which Elie, with tears streaming down, said, "Love.Yav." The whole thing was so sweet and certainly more helpful than anything I could/would have done...

Also today we went to a playground while Elie was asleep. Jeremy and Yoav went to play, but Yoav didn't want to play b/c Elie was asleep. So later in the day we went to a different playground, this time when Elie was awake, and the boys had a blast together. We even noticed that Yoav was afraid to go up a ladder by himself, but then when he saw Elie doing it, he gained confidence and did it himself (but there is never any jealousy with this sort of thing - sometimes he'll ask "How did he do that?" about something Elie does, but he's more than happy to learn from Elie).

Centering Yoav - Another Update

As I posted before, Yoav was getting a bit agitated toward the beginning of the week, so I've been keeping to our Enki rhythm as closely as possible and I've also been playing with Scott Noelle's centering ideas to fine-tune them for use with Yoav.

I had one eureka moment this week, that I think will help me a lot. Seems really obvious in hindsight, but I didn't think of it until it happened naturally. Yoav does NOT want to hear me talk about getting centered - doesn't want any talk of "let's breathe together" or anything like that.

My best success happened like this:
He was freaking out because he didn't have any more of the small squares of colored paper he used to make his little cars/trucks. So I started talking to him about what colors he was wanting and what colors he already had. That brought him to relax a little and I was able to get him to sit on my lap by holding out my arms to him as I was talking about the paper. Then I continued to yap about which colors he wanted and said I'd go look and I thought they were upstairs. As I was talking, I was massaging his upper arms to help him relax, so I talked as long it took until he seemed calm - basically just, "Ah, so do you want red?" yes or no from him, then asked about all different colors, then asked which he didn't want, etc. Just round and round discussion to take up time for the massage ;) Worked great and I'm going to continue in this direction. Helping him to get calm without overtly talking about the process.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Yoav's Productivity

It's 1:20am and I just finished all my soaking (challah, beans for cholent, rice, oatmeal, pancakes) and prep for tomorrow, so this will be very brief!

Yoav is so ridiculously productive. Jer and I joke about how far ahead of us he is, productivity-wise. Today we were playing in the playroom and he disappeared for less than an hour and came back with these three trucks:


Left to right it's a digger, fire truck and cargo truck. They're made out of thin colored paper and LOTS of tape. Each has a seat for a driver. The digger has a blue thing for digging, the fire truck has a ladder and the cargo truck separates into cab and cargo part - the cab has a buttonhole sort of cut and the cargo part has a piece of paper sticking down that sticks into the hole to keep them together. The cargo one is based on the design of this cargo carrier by Maine Toys, which we have, and both boys love. Earlier in the day Yoav was talking about getting more trucks from Maine Toys, but I think he decided to just make some himself - I'm curious to see if he mentions it again ;)

Yoav's been much calmer. Slowly, slowly, he's coming back to us. I don't know if it's that I've been really sticking to my Enki rhythm, or that I've been an Oak Tree. Probably a little of both.

NT Salmon Croquettes

I made salmon croquettes today thanks to D! My MIL made them for me when she was staying with us after DS2 was born but I forgot all about them. Of course, those weren't NT!

They came out delicious - this is what I did to NT-ize a standard salmon croquette recipe:

NT Salmon Croquettes

Ingredients:
1 can wild salmon (I used Vital Choice)
1 whole egg; 1 egg yolk
1/4 cup chopped onion
1/3 cup dried/stale sourdough bread crumbled up
1/4 teaspoon salt
dash of ground black pepper
2-3 T coconut oil

Directions:
Pour all of the ingredients into a large bowl and mix them. Mold the dough-like mix that you end up with into patties.

Coat a frying pan with coconut oil. Preheat the oiled pan over medium heat. Slip the patties into the pan, fitting as many as you can but leaving room to turn them. Cook until medium brown on one side, then turn over and do the same to the other side.


We ate it with labneh, Israeli salad and kale chips for the kids (Yoav ate meat since he's allergic to fish). Yum yum!! Thanks D!!! These are going to be a standard here now!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Elie Update

I need to write a few quick things about Elie before I forget!

He said his first sentence last week Wednesday - nothing special, he actually just copied Yoav, but it was the first - he said "I found it." (Yoav had started playing with a box first and said this when Elie moved it to play with himself...)

He's been talking more and more lately but is generally very careful (ie slow) with his words.

He calls Yoav "Yav" or "Yavi"; I'm "Ima"; Jer is either "Aba" or "Yeremey"

He's been saying "Toda" (Thank you) a lot. I love hearing it, especially when it's for simple things like I give him a cup of water and he thanks me, buckle him in the car seat and I get a Toda, Yoav hands him a crayon and Yoav gets a Toda :)

He's also very self-sufficient. A few days ago he was looking for his second shoe and I told him I thought it was upstairs under the bed. So he headed up and came back a few minutes later with the missing shoe. I have to really try to keep this going. He does more for himself than Yoav does. Whoops - did I just compare them - d'oh! ;)

He's also very cuddly and gives me kisses on the lips which I love ;)

He also has an incredibly sweet trembling frown. Like today once when he realized he was ten feet away from me with a person in between, he just looked at me and his lower lip started trembling, holding himself back from crying. Too cute. I love this age!

Enki Updated Schedule

I was going to write a bit about our ongoing search for a home here, but I think I'll put it off for another night because I'm really tired. We went to a Yom Ha'atzmaut (Israel Independence Day) BBQ today and it was really a great day. Perfect weather, lots of kids and great people. We ended up bringing some of our own food which worked out perfectly - I brought grass-fed steak that Jer BBQed and I brought hummus and sourdough bread. It made it much better than most BBQs or meal events at other people's houses where the kids inevitably eat pita and/or regular meat.

OK, so I want to post my updated daily and weekly Enki schedules. We've been faily rhythm-less for several weeks and I can see Yoav starting a downward spiral. He's getting more anxious about things - screaming if he runs out of tape, or gets water on himself, etc. He's also started something where he says he has to pee, but then nothing comes out. It seems like a sign of anxiety to me :( I'll give it a week and see how things are.

To help him through this, I'm going to really work to be an Unconditional Presence - see Scott Noelle's Daily Groove about it here.

My weekly schedule is:
Sunday: Family Adventure Day (zoo or park or similar and horseback riding lessons in evening)
Monday: Painting Day
Tuesday: Baking Day
Wednesday: Craft Day
Thursday: Beach Day
Friday: Cooking Day
Saturday: Shabbat

Daily schedule is a work-in-progress since Elie's nap has shifted later in the day and isn't really reliable. He's been skipping naps some. I did painting with both kids on Monday and it was a bit of a mess. Not at all the beautifully serene experience it is with just Yoav. Elie had fun, though, and I ended up moving his stuff outside. Maybe next week I'll just set them up outside to begin with, with Elie on the floor and Yoav at the table so Yoav can stay relaxed and concentrate on his painting. Stories have been difficult too with Elie involved. He likes to sit right next to me on the couch as if to listen, but then he holds the book and turn the page when it's not time to do so. I try to give him a different book to look at, but it is a little distracting and certainly not the ideal. But I want to have plenty of time in the afternoon to do quiet time and go outside so I'd like to get the story and activity done in the morning. I have my free session with Beth (founder of Enki) on May 8, so I'll work with this until then and then get her input on how to tweak it. I've been waiting for so long to schedule the call, but I want her thoughts on a few things which I'll write about another day.

Daily rhythm:
Wake up and snuggle (Yoav hasn't been handling too much snuggling - he's been getting wacky if we stay in bed for very long)
Get dressed (try to get Elie dressed)
Breakfast
Clean up while kids play
Trampoline to get blood moving and do a few sensory movements without the kids realizing what I'm doing
Vestibular followed by Proprioceptive Movement (these are the two Enki says kids don't get enough of, so I want to be sure to do these every day -for now, I'm just doing spinning as Vestibular and then we hop like rabbits for proprioceptive. Once our rhythm is flowing better I'll try to do a verse for them.)
Small snack
Story
Activity (watercolor, craft, etc)
Lunch prep while kids play
Lunch
Quiet Time
Outdoor play (or playates or grocery shopping as needed)
Indoor play / dinner prep
Settling time - read books
Dinner
Indoor creative play
Snack
Sleep

Weekly schedule - Week of May 19:
Story: "Cats and Mice" from "One hundred and one Jewish Read-Aloud Stories" by Barbara Diamond Goldin
Baking: None since we had the Yom Ha'atzmaut BBQ
Craft: Pom Pom Bunny (p. 197 and 73 of Enki Craft Book)

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Weekly Meal Plan

This is my best attempt yet at an organized menu plan. I think it fits the NT recommendations that I listed here pretty well. The only two less-than-ideal items are that I'm using canned wild salmon (from Vital Choice) instead of fresh because I can't find fresh wild salmon here although I'm hopeful that I eventually will with a little help from Jer... Also I can't find raw butter so am using Kerrygold, which is listed in the WAPF guide as "Good" rather than "Best". I'm happy with the meal plan though and it's close to what I've been doing and I took into account daily activities so easier things on days I'm home less, etc.

This week we're going to a Yom Ha'atzmaut (Israel Independence Day) BBQ on Tuesday, but I think going forward, Tuesday will be ground beef with spaghetti squash spaghetti (NT p. 402) and tomato sauce. I'm going to keep things minimally varied week-to-week for a few weeks to see how I do. I'll just vary the veggie sides and the Tues and Wed dinners.

Drinks
Kombucha for breakfast, ginger tea or bone broth for other meals

Snacks
S1 (morning): For Em and Elie - raw yogurt, raw egg, strawberries; For Yoav - fresh seasonal low(er)-fructose fruit and almonds
S2 (afternoon): Rotate between kale chips and avocado and homemade tortilla chips (recipe from Cheeseslave)
S3 (evening): Oatmeal with honey

Breakfast
Su: Pancakes (Yoav - whole wheat or spelt soaked overnight in water and lemon juice, cooked in coconut oil; Em, Elie, Jer - whole wheat or spelt soaked overnight in yogurt, cooked in Kerrygold butter) - Recipe on p. 478 of NT
M: Banana bread (with butter for Em, Jer and Elie) - Recipe on p. 483 of NT
T: Pancakes (Yoav - whole wheat or spelt soaked overnight in water and lemon juice, cooked in coconut oil; Em, Elie, Jer - whole wheat or spelt soaked overnight in yogurt, cooked in Kerrygold butter) - Recipe on p. 478 of NT
W: Banana bread (with butter for Em, Jer and Elie) - Recipe on p. 483 of NT
R: Out to breakfast
F: Pancakes (Yoav - whole wheat or spelt soaked overnight in water and lemon juice, cooked in coconut oil; Em, Elie, Jer - whole wheat or spelt soaked overnight in yogurt, cooked in Kerrygold butter) - Recipe on p. 478 of NT
Sa: Banana bread (with butter for Em, Jer and Elie) - Recipe on p. 483 of NT

Lunch
Su-F: Fried egg for Yoav, Over easy eggs for Jer, Em and Elie; sourdough bread with butter (homemade almond butter for Yoav); cucumber and tomato salad (NT p. 183)
Sa: Cholent with grass-fed organic oyster blade beef and leftover salads

Dinner (note that fermented foods will be added whenever they seem appetizing - I have pickled beets, pickled carrots and sauerkraut)
Su (at horse ranch after lessons): For Yoav: Avocado and chips; For Em, Elie and Jer: Salmon on sourdough with butter, avocado with chips or sourdough bread
M: Yoav: Broiled chicken liver; Em, Jer and Elie: Chopped liver (recipe in the Lubavitch Spice & Spirit cookbook) on sourdough bread with sauteed carrots and steamed broccoli
Tu (Yom Ha'atzmaut - we're bringing food to a BBQ): Sourdough bread, hummus, chicken skewers, strawberries and melon
W: Yemenite meat dish (it's in a Hebrew cookbook and Jer's asleep on the couch so I don't know what it's called or the name of the cookbook LOL)
R: For Yoav: Leftover meat from Wed; For Em, Elie and Jer: salmon on sourdough bread with ratatouille (NT . 384)
F: Challah, carrot ginger soup, roast chicken, chopped liver, brown basmati rice, lentil salad, sweet potatoes, hummus, babaganoush, cucumber/tomato salad - recipes here
Sa: Leftover salads, cholent, sourdough bread

TO DO:
SUNDAY
Night: Night: For pancakes - soak 1/2 cup flour soaked overnight in 1/4 cup water + 1/2 T lemon juice; soak 1.5 cups flour soaked in 1.5 cups yogurt; For oatmeal - soak 1 cup oats in 1 cup water + 2T lemon juice; Bake banana bread (1.5 hours at 350); soak 3 cups chickpeas with water and 6T lemon juice
MONDAY
Night: For pancakes - soak 1/2 cup flour soaked overnight in 1/4 cup water + 1/2 T lemon juice; soak 1.5 cups flour soaked in 1.5 cups yogurt; For oatmeal - soak 1 cup oats in 1 cup water + 2T lemon juice
Mix up sourdough bread - 2 2/3 cup starter, 1/3 cup water, 5/6 T sea salt, 4 1/3 cup flour
Marinate chicken skewers
For banana bread, soak 3 cups flour with 2 cups yogurt.
TUESDAY
Morning: Bake sourdough bread (1 hour at 350)
Night: soak 1.5 cups flour soaked in 1.5 cups yogurt; For oatmeal - soak 1 cup oats in 1 cup water + 2T lemon juice; Bake banana bread (1.5 hours at 350);
WEDNESDAY
Night: For pancakes - soak 1/2 cup flour soaked overnight in 1/4 cup water + 1/2 T lemon juice; soak 1.5 cups flour soaked in 1.5 cups yogurt; For oatmeal - soak 1 cup oats in 1 cup water + 2T lemon juice
Start chicken stock
THURSDAY
Early afternoon: For banana bread, soak 3 cups flour with 2 cups yogurt.
Night: For pancakes - soak 1/2 cup flour soaked overnight in 1/4 cup water + 1/2 T lemon juice; soak 1.5 cups flour soaked in 1.5 cups yogurt; For oatmeal - soak 1 cup oats in 1 cup water + 2T lemon juice; Soak 1 cup rice with water and 2T lemon juice; soak 2 cups lentils with water and 2 T lemon juice; mix wet ingredients for challah and let soak overnight
FRIDAY
Morning: Bake banana bread (1.5 hours at 350);
Noon: For oatmeal - soak 1 cup oats in 1 cup water + 2T lemon juice; Cook oatmeal for that evening snack and store out of fridge.
SATURDAY
Night: For pancakes - soak 1/2 cup flour soaked overnight in 1/4 cup water + 1/2 T lemon juice; soak 1.5 cups flour soaked in 1.5 cups yogurt; For oatmeal - soak 1 cup oats in 1 cup water + 2T lemon juice

Continual To Do
Make yogurt from raw goat's milk, kombucha and veggie ferments as needed

Next major NT Goal
Start making milk kefir

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Lots of ferments

I had such a busy fermentation night today - I thought I'd share my excitement :)

* I mixed up a new batch of kombucha;
* Prepped raw goat's milk yogurt - it's sitting in the oven with the pilot light on to hopefully turn into yogurt - this is my first yogurt attempt so we'll see how it goes...
* Mixed sourdough bread - it's rising for 12 hours to bake in the morning;
* Grain is soaking in yogurt for pancakes;
* Grain is soaking in yogurt for banana bread (will make it tomorrow evening after a 24 hour soak);
* 4 cups of almonds have been soaked in salt water and are dehydrating.

I think I'm back on the wagon again after Pesach. Took me a while to get back into the swing of things. All it takes is a few lazy days for me really. I wish I was able to do more prep work during the day, but I find that it's already more than enough to cook the current day's food - I can't seem to find time to prep for the next day until the kids fall asleep.

I was reading some about "Freezer Cooking" a few days ago - spending a day cooking and freezing everything in batches to be used for dinners for a month! Pretty cool idea. It's not as healthy to eat frozen food since some enzymes and nutrients are lost in freezing, but it's obviously a lot better than what happens in most people's houses when there's no plan for dinner :) I want to get into the habit of having at least one or two frozen dinners ready for food emergencies.

I was going to do my weekly menu plan, but it's already 12:30am. Oh and I hear a kid. So that's that... Good night!

Friday, April 16, 2010

Beach / Bunny / Ball

A few photos from the last two days -

Yesterday we went to the Herzliya beach again. I really love going - it's so calming and the kids love playing in the sand and water. (And the Enki mama in me thinks about how great a sensory experience it is - Yoav was running barefoot on the beach, which gets extra Sensory Points LOL). We're going to make the beach a weekly family event. Every Thursday we go out to breakfast at Meshek Barzilai, an organic restaurant in Yarkona. We're going to plan to do breakfast and then head to the beach for an hour or two each Thursday. So Thursday will be our new "Beach Day". Here's a pic of the boys near the water:



Here's a belated photo of Yoav holding Fasker, our new bunny. She's 1.5 months old (approximately). She's a Dutch Bunny and seems to be getting acclimated to house rabbit life ;)



And here's a photo of a little fabric ball I made yesterday. The pattern is from Purl Bee here. I used my $5/yard organic muslin (from Dharma Trading) that I dyed with plant dyes. It's stuffed with wool. I want to make two more for my coming nephews. It's a great baby gift (in addition to the fact that babies love balls, it's also cheap, quick to make and organic) and can be enjoyed for years!

Fermented Cod Liver Oil - SALE!!

I want to quickly post an amazing deal on Fermented Cod Liver Oil.

Dave at Green Pasture, is having a sale on the kid's gummy fish FCLO - it's $10 per bottle (45 fish - serving size is one per day) versus the usual price of $30 per bottle.

The link to the fish is here.

For those who don't know about FCLO, there is no comparison between even the best quality Cod Liver Oil and Fermented Cod Liver Oil.

Here's two articles about the difference:
From Dave at Green Pasture: http://www.greenpasture.org/community/?q=node/136
From Weston Price - "Cod Liver Oil Basics and Recommendations": http://www.westonaprice.org/Cod-Liver-Oil-Basics-and-Recommendations.html

From my studies, I believe that FCLO is the one supplement everyone should be taking (we also take probiotics). FCLO has huge benefits that are not easily found in other foods. They have high levels of Vitamin A and D, which were both found in primitive diets at levels TEN times the average of modern people. FCLO is a recommended supplement for women AND their partners for several months prior to conception.

I actually bought 30 packs of the gummy fish at this price!!! Crazy, huh? But I saved $600 :) Dave at Green Pasture told me they last at least two years out of the fridge and more in the fridge or freezer. And if you buy at least 12 items total, then the adult FCLO is discounted as well. Just don't get the Fruit Attack - I find it quite revolting ;) If you do get a gel, the only way I've figured out to get it down is to use my top teeth to sweep it off the spoon so it doesn't touch my tongue and then to chase with kombucha or anything really - even water helps.

This is *not* kosher, but I talked to a religious WAP follower here who told me she talked to Green Pasture and because of the methods used, she is comfortable that it is kosher even though not certified so. In addition, she also told me she considers it a case of refuah (healing) - since nothing else comes close to offering the same benefits of FCLO, this is the only option and the health benefits are not to be passed up. I know it's not good enough for everyone, but it's good enough logic for our family.

Enjoy!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Elie's Cuteness and More on Catching Up

Thanks for the encouragement yesterday ;) Glad to know someone's reading, if not my mom :)

Here's a happy cute Elie story to share. Our neighbor, an 8yo girl, came over today to see the bunny (she really likes the bunny and Yoav is thrilled that she's been coming over more and doesn't care why). She was trying to get the bunny to eat a piece of the bunny food out of her hand. Then Elie wanted to try and held the bunny food out for the bunny. Later, Elie saw a spider and was holding an almond and put the almond near the spider's mouth to try to feed the spider ;) I love the idea of living in a world where you think it's possible that a spider would eat an almond. I want to go back to that place....

I'm also working on my food and Enki plans and hope to have something figured out soon. Both my food and Enki rhythms fell apart with Pesach (our recent holiday). I ate worse than usual during Pesach since I don't have a food processor or mixer or soup pot to use during Pesach and since you can't eat grains. It was all a bit too much for me, trying to eat Traditional Food during Pesach. In my past life, I got through Pesach with a lot of peanut butter and jelly on matzoh - but now I don't eat peanut butter or jelly :(

Anyway, I definitely got out of my rhythm and I think not eating as well as usual has affected my mood - I've been more sluggish and blah for the past week. I think if I can get back to eating well, then everything will fall into place. I believe strongly in the relationship between healthy eating and mood - seems so obvious and almost silly to write it, but I didn't know it ten years ago when it would have really helped me. Certainly would have saved me a lot of money on therapy ;)

Monday, April 12, 2010

Catching Up

I'm so behind on blogging. I don't know if I should give up, catch up or what. I started it for my mother to keep up with what the boys (and me I guess) were doing, but I don't think she's reading it anymore and I'm not getting much out of it as a jounal. Mom, are you there?!?!?! I have a few friends in the States who read it, so I like that I can keep in touch about basic things even if I forget to email ;)

For now, I'll catch up on a few small things.

Regarding Eshchar, we went for our interview to learn that the plot we had thought was being held for us has been sold. We were pretty disappointed at first, but we've decided to rent there for now (starting when our lease here ends in August) and then will buy a plot when the next section of plots open. The upside of that is that the plots have AMAZING views. Most have views like this :)



Near Eshchar, in Yodfat, there's a very fun petting zoo. They have squirrel monkeys that are not caged (or I guess you're in the huge cage with them). Jeremy managed to pet one :) The whole place is really open with lots of greenery and places to run around and hide under trees and such. Here's a photo of Yoav feeding some sheep:



My only big recent food news is that I started making kombucha and it is amazing. Better than store-bought. I think I held out for so long on making it myself because I didn't realize it would end up fizzy and delicious! I used a scoby from Kombucha2000 ( I found this argument for why the scoby doesn't have to be kosher) and I used Frontier Ceylon black tea, which is an orange pekoe tea per the recommendation by Kombucha 2000. It's incredibly easy to do - you boil water, add sugar, stir until dissolved, then put in tea for ten mins, take tea out, cool to lukewarm temperature and add scoby and mother tea (tea from previous culture). Then you set it out with a cheesecloth on top of the jug and wait 10 days. I used the detailed directions in Herald Tietze's "Kombucha, The Miracle Fungus".

And, in my late-night sewing world, I'm almost finished with the baby quilt I planned recently. Here is the front:



Oh, and we got a bunny! She's SO cute. It's a black dutch bunny, which has long floppy ears that hang down to the ground. She's supposed to be a great family bunny. She's about a month old. We're working on potty training her. She seems to only pee in her cage (which, for the moment is also a litter box). We need to make a separate litter box. She is really fun to watch. Sometimes she gets really kooky and hops around really fast in circles. I like that she'll let you hold her and pet her for a long time, especially since she's so silky soft. I still have to get a picture of her...

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Allergies

Elie and I ate gefilte fish for lunch today and, while I was cleaning some dishes, Elie started splattering it around with his fork :( I ran over and took away the plate and fork, cleared and replaced the tablecloth, and washed Yoav's hands, but some must have splattered on his body. A few minutes later, he got what looked like a mosquito bite under his eye. Within a few minutes, both eyes were swollen and he got hives all around his eyes and on his cheeks and his nose got really runny. Aside from the fact that he was miserable from the swelling, he also had barely eaten yet and was hungry, so this made for a pretty miserable hour for us. So I guess he's still allergic to fish...

Oddly since he hasn't had any reactions in quite a long time (other than a few months ago when I tried soaking him pancakes in a mix of water and a small bit of raw goat milk), he just had a bad reaction a week or two ago when we went to Dr. Shakshuka in Jaffa. He got the steak which he's had before and, theoretically, he shouldn't be allergic to it, since it's just steak, no sesame oil is used in the cooking and there were no sides on his plate. But I assume it must have mixed along the way with sesame, since the only other possibility since it's a non-dairy restaurant is fish, but I don't think it actually could have been fish because the reaction was different. The Dr. Shakshuka reaction was hives on his cheeks and around his mouth and I think he always gets the eye swelling with fish (by always I mean this time and the one time when he was 10 months old and his whole face swelled up).

I haven't had fish in the house at all since then, but lately I've been wanting the rest of us to start eating fish since it's really healthy and highly recommended by NT and I thought since I wasn't cooking it, that there was minimal risk of a reaction. I'm still going to try to eat fish (especially since I just ordered $100 of canned wild salmon from Vital Choice LOL), but I think I'll get separate parve plates and silverware to use just for fish and will be sure to stay next to Elie if he's eating it! And I guess I could try to eat it only outside on the deck... Oy.

This is giving me even more incentive to start GAPS after Pesach. It's just so tiring to think about. I'll pretty much have to give up any other activities (crafting, reading...) for a bit.... But his eczema is worse than ever even though Spring his here and I've been giving him kombucha rubbed on his skin and internally and we have no unnatural cleaners in the house. And I'm so tired of cooking separate meals for him, especially since he's missing some of the nutrients (IMO) that come from raw milk/cheese, fish and other things he's allergic to.