Read around the Paleo blogosphere…

One of the things I love about the primal/paleo community is how generous its inhabitants are.  They are so giving of their time, knowledge, help and experience – for free, on the internet!  That is one of the many reasons I LOVE to buy their books and help them out personally.  I am a little behind on the book buying right now due to our impending move, but Eat Like a Dinosaur is next on my priority list!

My favorite day of the week is Friday.  Not for obvious reasons – actually, logistically, it’s a nightmare.  Due to early dismissal from the high school, the kids’ volunteer schedule, and art class I am on the run from 12:30 until 6, making it hard to prepare and execute a healthy and nutritious reunion dinner for the five of us – so I usually beg my husband to take me out after the CaveBaby goes to bed.  I love Friday because that’s when Mark Sisson publishes his success story of the week, and Modern Paleo it Paleo Rodeo.

If you think I like the success stories because I like looking at beefcake pictures of musclebound dudes, think again!  Mark also highlights people who have changed from emaciated and malnourished to healthy, beaten PCOS into submission, brought together multiple generations in a family in pursuit of a common goal,  and in general found a life of health and happiness outside the sphere of “normal” in our current society.  The quote that became this guy’s title caused one of those seismic shifts in my brain when it came to the imperative to eat real food – that continuing to eat a regular American diet is a slow and painful suicide, one bite at a time.  I find these stories and pictures to be so inspirational – they help me continue to make good choices in what I chose to consume every day.

The Paleo Rodeo over on Modern Paleo’s blog is also a great read every Friday.  They round up interesting stories from the blogosphere and put them all in one handy little place.  There is also a huge list of paleo blogs that writers self-submit.  Two years ago it would have been feasible to view all the blogs in the list…but as the movement has grown, so has the list!  No, you won’t find me on the list…yet.  One of these days I will have the nerve to do so – maybe when I come up with a particularly good recipe and document it!

Another blog I like to read these days is The Paleo Mom.  Sarah is funny and smart, with a scienc-y PhD, so she likes to approach paleo from a technical aspect – but then gets into the touchy-feely stuff about the effects of the changes on her family.  So it appeals to both right- and left- brained folks.  I also came across PaleoNonPaleo this week after Alison did a guest post on Paleo Parents.  Her post was about how paleo had changed their family for the better, in terms of one of her kids’ behavioral issues.

I finished reading Why We Get Fat this week.  It was a phenomenal read and caused some significant seismic shifts in my brain about the cause/effect relationship of diet and obesity.  I am currently reading Dean Dwyer’s Make Shi(f)t Happen for a change of pace.  It appeals to me because it approaches making changes to the mind/body connection like an organizational change, which was my job in a previous life.  It’s very positive and inspirational, if that is your gig I definitely recommend it.  Personally, I am a bit of a science nerd myself so my favorite books tend to approach this way of life from that perspective.

So there you have it!  I still haven’t had much time to putz around in the kitchen like I’d like to, so still nothing new on the recipe front.  But the days are getting longer, and I have a grill tank full of propane out back so I can envision a few splendid summer recipes on the horizon!

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CaveBaby Update

A lot of people seem to be stopping by from Mark’s Daily Apple (aka my gateway drug to the paleo lifestyle!) so I will update you on our little bundle of joy.

He is 15 months old TODAY!  And he has lived a life without rice cereal, oatmeal, formula, and teething biscuits.  What does he eat?  Whatever we eat!

A typical day starts out with his breakfast.  When I am on top of things, I have a dozen little muffin cups of scrambled eggs pre-made in the fridge so they can be easily warmed and served soon after he gets up in the morning.  I serve the eggs with 1/4 avocado and 1/2 banana.  He eats this in his little high chair – I hand him a pre-loaded fork and he feeds himself – well, except for the avocado.  For a drink he will have a few ounces of coconut milk, which he loves.  He’ll eat it, but you have to stick it in his mouth!  After he eats I usually make my breakfast of eggs, sautéed spinach and either bacon or gluten-free sausage.  Cavebaby likes to run between the little show he watches on TV and my fork, loaded with little bites of sausage or bacon for him.  He really loves salty, spiced meat!

After breakfast I sometimes put some dried blueberries, cranberries, and sliced almonds on his little table so he can help himself if he is hungry.  I also set out a straw cup full of water so he can help himself if he is thirsty.

For lunch, I cut up some bites of pre-cooked chicken breast from Trader Joe’s and let him feed himself 2 “squeezies” of Ella’s organic fruit/veggies mix.

After his nap, I usually give him some fresh-cut strawberries and/or blueberries to keep him from getting grumpy when I am assembling his dinner later.

I have been in a repetitive pattern of cooking for the family so I usually have either a batch of Chocolate Chili from Well Fed made up, or a casserole of Primal Moussaka in the fridge, or some meatballs.  I serve this with sweet potato chunks and sometimes other veggies as well – he especially likes green beans and red cabbage.  He likes to wash his dinner down with a glass of water like a big boy.  Lunch and dinner are both served at a small table/chair setup I bought with the intention of using it as a Montessori weaning table.  I’m not 100% compliant with the methodology, but that is where he likes to eat his food instead of roaming about the house to eat, which drives me nuts.

Sometimes we have to eat very early, in order to take the older kids to their evening activities.  We do not get home until after 8 pm, so I like to feed him half a banana before he goes to bed.

So what is CaveBaby like?  He is incredibly healthy, but I really could say that about our older two kids who were fed the SAD as babies, one of whom was fed formula as well.  I think the main difference is how STRONG this kid is.  He can literally do chinups, and while he does have his normal and necessary baby chub, you can also start to see his little calf and quad muscles as well.  Also (and I don’t necessarily attribute this difference in my children to feeding them a different diet) he has a lot more energy and is into everything!  Thank goodness I have the two older kids to help corral him – I need it!

One other thing – you may have noticed that I have not mentioned any breastfeeding in this post.  Cavebaby decided, at 13 months, that he was done with that nonsense.  I was prepared to continue for awhile, so I was a little sad when he suddenly decided he was done – but I was confident he was receiving adequate nutrition from the other food he was eating.  In fact, he is the best eater I have had so far!  With my other kids, I was terrified of feeding them anything with spice or texture at this age.  Don’t ask me why!  I had no internet with the first one, so I just followed whatever my doctor said, and happily supported Gerber and Nestle and the like for lack of knowing better and trusting my instincts.  The only food he has tried and doesn’t like so far is kiwi.  He is genuinely excited when he sits in his little chair and sees his dinner plate on the table – and that is one of the reasons I find a paleo lifestyle so rewarding!