I’m Not On a Diet…

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What I’m doing is not a quick fix.

Its not even a weight loss program… Although, I could do with losing a few pounds…

No. What I’m on, is the journey of a lifetime! An ambitious, all-important transformation in how I think about food… how I view and think about my body… my life… and what I want out of the time I have left on this earth!

Big changes like this are always hard.

Changing the way I think about food is hard.

My relationship with food is an emotional one. Food is my comfort, my reward… a trusted friend…

I’ve got food habits and traditions that go back to my childhood.

Will I be able to give up foods that for so long have held an emotional bond?

My goal is to improve my health, my sleep, my energy levels, my mood, my body composition, my self confidence… even my quality of life…

Will the food I eat be able to do all these things?

I am told that by eating whole foods, it will initiate a healthy chain reaction through my entire life, giving me a sense of control, freedom, stability and confidence that will inspire me to take on other personal development goals both big and small.

The theory is that by eating healthy, whole foods, I will feel better. And, because I feel better I will want to do more.

I guess I can accept this theory, since when I feel bad, I eat eat junk food. Which makes me feel worse. So I eat more junk food. Its a vicious cycle!

I don’t expect this journey to be easy… I don’t expect to be perfect…

Real change takes time.

I plan to celebrate even the smallest of victories.

I’m going to do this one day, one meal, one bite at a time.

Why?

Because I’m doing it for the most important and worthwhile cause on this earth — me!

Here’s to good health,

~ Sheri

I’m Not On a Diet

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After a disappointing showing of our home, and spiraling down the rabbit hole of disappointment, I ate my way through a box of doughnuts and a gallon of ice cream!

The result – that old familiar stomach pain!

What was I thinking?

Now its back to the beginning… A fresh start…

What I’m doing is not a quick fix.

Its not even a weight loss program… Although, I could do with losing a few more pounds…

No. What I’m on, is the journey of a lifetime!

It’s an ambitious, all-important transformation in how I think about food… how I view and think about my body… my life… and what I want out of the time I have left on this earth!

Changing the way I think about food is hard.

My relationship with food is an emotional one.

Food is my comfort… my reward… a trusted friend…

I’ve got food habits and traditions that go back to my childhood.

Am I willing to give up foods that for so long have held an emotional bond?

My goal is to improve my health… my sleep… my energy levels… my mood… my body composition…my self confidence… even my quality of life…

Can the foods I eat actually do all these things?

Absolutely!

By eating whole, farm grown and raised foods, a healthy chain reaction is initiated through my entire life. With it comes a sense of control… freedom… stability… and a confidence that inspires me to take on other personal development goals – both big and small.

The theory is, that by eating healthy, whole foods, we will feel better. And, because we feel better, we will want to do more!

I accept this theory, because I have noticed that when I feel bad, I eat junk food. Which makes me feel worse. So, I eat more junk food. Its a vicious cycle!

The journey to good health isn’t easy… I don’t expect to be perfect…

Real change takes time.

As I get myself back on track, I plan to celebrate even the smallest of victories.

I’m doing this one day, one meal, one bite at a time.

Why?

Because I’m doing it for the most important and worthwhile cause on this earth — me!

Here’s to your good health,

~ Sheri

FARM Cooking = Good Medicine

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HOW MY JOURNEY TO HEALTH BEGAN…

I think I’m having a heart attack!

That’s how it felt, as I was rushed to the hospital in an ambulance!

Yet, after a weeks stay in the cardiac unit… various tests – including a heart catheter to see if there were any blockages… I was given a prescription of antacids and sent home.

Diagnosis – a severe form of Reflux!

With medicine in hand, I went home, but continued eating the way I always had – with every bad habit I’d learned since childhood! 

Let me explain…

I grew up in a family that didn’t drink alcohol or smoke, but all food — no matter how unhealthy — was considered okay.

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Most of my childhood memories – both good and bad – centered around food.

When we had something to celebrate, we celebrated by going out to eat.

When we were sad, we consoled ourselves with comfort food.

When I got home from school, milk and cookies, or some other sweet confectionary, was a ‘tide-me-over’ until dinner.

As I got older and moved out on my own, I rarely exercised, and ate junk food constantly. I paid little, if any, attention to my health.

FAST FORWARD TO 2014

After dad passed away, mom decided she wanted to move to the country… to raise chickens, and grow our own food…

But even then, my bad eating habits and my love of sweet confectionery foods continued…

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However, after my third trip to the hospital, and second stay in the cardiac unit – once again told that it was my digestive system, I knew drastic changes were needed!

I began educating myself with different eating plans… Yet I was still having severe pains in my stomach, which now included pain in my gallbladder!

My digestive track was under attack!

In August 2016, I began a severe elimination diet. The purpose – to eliminate the pain!

I was only eating 4 veggies (carrots, zuchinni, spinach and green beans), chicken, and homemade bone broth.

Amazingly, within 24 hours the pain was gone!

The only problem – I quickly became bored with my ‘diet!’

I needed to find a better way to eat. A food plan that would allow me to eat without pain!

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That’s when I stumbled upon an eating plan that helped me understand my relationship with food and how it affected my health.

Unfortunately, as good as the plan was, its wasn’t meant to be a long term eating plan…

I needed something that would carry me through this journey we call life!

That’s when it hit me… The foods I was growing and raising on my little homestead was providing me the nourishment I needed for good health!

Henceforth, ‘Farm Cooking’- eating whole fresh foods from the farm, equals good medicine!

Here’s to good health!

~ Sheri

Testing… The Strengthening of Our Faith

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So much has happened since my last post. I’m not sure where to begin…

After dealing with flooding, twice in 10 days time… sorting and packing for our new adventure… planning a yard sale… making plans on earning an income on the road… it came as quite a disappointment when we showed our house!

Disappointment is an understatement!

So many doors had opened for us! Including my finding work as a photographer.

It was a hard pill to swallow when the only offer we had was $20,000 less than what we still owe on our mortgage!

All our hopes of traveling – gone!

The loss of a potential new income was devastating to me! I’ve always wanted to travel and follow in my fathers footsteps as a photographer.

In Proverbs 16:9, it says that man plans his ways, buy God orders his steps.

Was God saying ‘No?’

After spiraling down the rabbit hole of disappointment, and eating my way through a half dozen of doughnuts and a gallon of ice cream, I decided to pick myself up, dust myself off and figure out the next step!

In a sense, each day is a test of our relationship with God.

To every person comes seasons of special joy, or adversity.

Both present opportunities for trusting that the Lord knows what He’s doing.

This type of testing is not like taking a classroom exam, where God is watching us, with grade book in hand, waiting to ‘pass’ or ‘fail’ us.

No, this testing comes through the circumstances of our lives. Its through this testing that we become more aware of our own hearts – our thoughts, our attitudes and emotions!

Through this self awareness, God shows us where we must still yield to Him in trusting obedience.

For me, I realized I still struggle with emotional eating, and that I wasn’t really trusting Him to take care of me…

Well, today is a new day! I will get myself back on the wagon of healthy eating. And, I will trust that whether we are on our little homestead a few days or a few years, He knows what is best for me!

~ Sheri

10 Signs You Have a Homesteading Spirit

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WHAT COMES TO MIND WHEN YOU HEAR THE TERM ‘HOMESTEADING?’

Does your mind conjure up images of the settlers of the old west? Or do you think you’d have to give up all your beloved modern conveniences – such as electricity and running water?

Or, perhaps you picture giving up your car to start riding in a horse and buggy…

DISPELLING THE MYTH

Homesteaders come in all shapes and sizes, and from all walks of life!

We live in the city… in the suburbs… and, we live in the country on an acre of land… or on a hundred…

If that’s the case, then how can you tell if YOU have a homesteading spirit?

THE TOP 10 SIGNS OF THE HOMESTEADING SPIRIT:

Do you…

  1. grow tomatoes, lettuce, basil and your favorite herbs on your apartment balcony or by a sunny window
  2. find kneading bread dough relaxing
  3. drive 20+ miles out of your way to buy milk and eggs from a farm
  4. learn about home remedies for healing your family
  5. have your cupboards full of your homemade preserves and your favorite dehydrated foods
  6. know how to ‘cook from scratch’
  7. find it amazing that your chickens feed you breakfast every morning
  8. enjoy getting your hands dirty working in the garden
  9. enjoy breathing in the smell of your laundry after hanging it out on the line
  10. make your own soaps and salves

So you see, the Homesteading Spirit can be found in each and every person! Wherever the Homesteading Spirit can be found, you’ll find we all have one thing in common… we want to get back to the basics… we have a deep seeded desire to grow and raise our own food… to do things the way our ancestors did…

If this is how you feel, then you’ve come to the right place.

Welcome to my homestead!

~ Sheri

Old Photos…

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My computer has been telling me for sometime that I am running out of memory…

The reason? Oodles and oodles of photos that I’ve taken since moving to our homestead.

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Over the last 4 years, I’ve taken thousands of pictures just of our chickens alone!

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Since yesterdays downpour didn’t allow me to work in the garden, I decided it was as good a time as any to sort through all those memories…

Little Sis and Baby Chicks

Some of my favorites are of the Littles that hatched last June.

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It was so much fun to watch their antics as momma took them all around the homestead, teaching them about all the things they could eat.

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I used twelve of my favorites to create a calendar, which now hangs on the fridge. It makes a lovely keepsake which we use to keep track of egg production.

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Its hard to believe the babies are almost a year old in June! Time sure flies!

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As I sat looking through all those photos, one question kept coming to mind, “Which ones do I delete?”

The ones that came out blurry, that’s a given…

But what about all the others?

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There are the those that I didn’t consider to be ‘professional enough…’ and then there are those that were not ‘blog worthy.’ However, I still enjoy looking at them all the same.

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So again, I ask myself, ‘How can I ever get rid of them?’

I guess I won’t. It’d be like tossing out photos of my family!

My computer is just going to have to keep yelling at me about all my photos!

My memories are more important than my computers!

~ Sheri

A Lofty Goal

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Recommiting myself to have our small farm support itself, I looked at the planting calendar.

What I discovered is that its just short of 15 weeks till the 4 year anniversary of our move to the country!

This got me thinking…

A fellow homesteader I know had given himself the challenge of growing and raising 100% of his food in just 100 days!

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That’s a lofty goal for sure!

Could we do that?

I think so!

We have until July 27th… that gives us 102 days…

Its will be a lot of work!

Already I can see some challenges we are going to have to face…

Our plan is to use the whole northwest end of our property…

The first step will be to decide which veggies to grow…

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No specialty veggies this year! Only what we know we will enjoy! And, only foods that are Whole30* compliant… You can find more on that reasoning here.

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Next, we will have to figure out how to keep our flock out of the garden area.

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The fencing that we used last year, was relocated to the back of the barn to replace broken fencing, and to enlarge their free range area.

We have other challenges to face as well…

With a late snow, and April showers, the original garden has flooded. The area has been too hard or too wet to plant any cool weather veggies.

With last night’s thunderstorm and today’s down pour, even the chickens had the good sense to stay indoors most of the day! Only when it stopped raining, did they come out to get some worms for a bedtime snack.

Even though I didn’t get out to the garden today, tomorrow is supposed to be sunny. Perhaps I will at least get outside to remove the debris from last nights storm…

~ Sheri

*This post contains affiliate links. This means that Country Girl Homestead makes a small commission on items purchased via these links. This income directly offsets the care and maintenance of our farm. Our flock thanks you for supporting Country Girl Homestead.