Whole 22 – Still proud

I will start off by saying I did not finish Whole 30

I am not upset..

I am not ashamed..

It was the right choice for me.

Before I start my reasoning for my choice I will say that Whole 30 is an excellent program and is certainly helpful with changing your mindset on how you think of food and show you that you really can survive without junk!  I still stand behind this program and highly recommend it to people who have an unhealthy relationship with food.  It just wasn’t the right time for me to be testing out such a drastic diet.  I should have known that before I started!

If you have followed my blog when I started you’ll know I have been sick for a majority of the Whole 30.  It may not be a ‘normal’ sickness like you’d think of flu or a cold or anything but I have been battling a virus of sorts that causes me to have extreme mouth ulcers (canker sores).  Aside from severe mouth pain is also causes me to be super tired all the time since my body is constantly fighting to heal.  My family doctor has believed I have an auto-immune disorder that causes this however it is super rare, hard to diagnose and just as harder to treat.  I have gone my whole life just treating the symptoms because there really isn’t a system in place to treat this disorder.  I am finally seeing a specialist who is the leading researcher in this disorder in Chicago.  Hopefully I will get answers and relief.

When I started Whole 30 I read the book and knew what was expected.  I also read up a lot on paleo diet since it’s so similar.  And they both said to not be afraid of fat as long as it was healthy fat.  In the beginning I did fairly well getting close to my calorie range I had in the beginning.  After a few days I started getting stomach pains.  I know this pain very well – Its the same pain I used to get before I got my gallbladder taken out.  I was told to watch my fat intake because the pain could come back.  Its been 7 years since I had that pain and I started getting it daily.  I would effect my workouts, I couldn’t run as long and even skipped the gym some days.  So then I realized I need to reduce my fat.  So I ate less fat and upped my veggies and tried to limit fruit since its still sugar and they explained dont eat too much fruit or make it the main focus.  Then my mouth sores came back which even limited the fruit I could have.  I am already highly allergic to all citrus fruits.  So this leaves me with berries, melon, apples, pears.  When I have my mouth sores I can’t have anything remotely bitter or sour.  Because of this I had to get rid of berries and apples.  This meant that my last few weeks of the diet have consisted of chicken or limited fatty proteins, vegetables and watermelon.  Since I didn’t have many options to eat I started eating a lot of vegetables.

This started a whole new problem.  Instead of stomach problems and mouth pain..I was now running to the bathroom constantly.  I am not saying casual bathroom breaks..im talking emergencies.  Let’s just say this super shy girl had to get over the phobia of pooping in public restrooms! (sorry,over share but I have to explain my situation!)

The last couple days of eating..bathroom…eating…bathroom..eating..bathroom I finally said “Why are you even doing this to yourself!”.  I was constantly hungry because nothing stayed in me very long..and anything that would previously fill my calorie range was off-limits.  I was averaging around 1300 calories a day when im used to around 1900.  I was starving!  I kept telling myself I had to finish just for the sake of finishing.  I convinced myself everyone would think im a loser for giving up.  Then I told myself..nobody else is feeling the symptoms of what im feeling.  Constant bathroom breaks, stomach pain, mouth sores, and hunger.  This is most definitely not what I was hoping for.  This was supposed to make me feel better, not worse.  Also I must say this so im not coming off wrong about Whole 30.  I totally believe in the program.  However my special circumstances caused this to be far more difficult than it had to be for me.  Not everyone has to battle my auto-immune disorder and lack of a gallbladder.  It was just not the right time for me at all.  Due to the lack of calories my workouts really went on the way-side and that is not something I wanted to happen.  I would get tired after 30 minutes and want to just give up and was probably only going to the gym about 3 days a week.

I finally threw in the towel when I went to the mall with my mom, niece, sister in law and soon to be sister in law.  We were picking out the flower girl dress for my niece and got frozen yogurt after.  I had been telling myself dont give into the frozen yogurt because you only have 8 days left.  Then I told myself “great..i have 8 days left of eating and pooping..how exciting”.  Then when everyone went through the line and got their frozen yogurt and I was sitting there with no frozen yogurt..I finally said ya know…enough is enough.  I dont feel good..im starving..and right now im an outsider because im being stubborn and worrying about what people will say when I say I couldnt finish whole 30.  It most certainly wasn’t peer pressure or a lack of will power…my mom didn’t even get frozen yogurt so I wouldn’t have been alone if I hadn’t gotten any.  But I told myself I feel sick..and now I cant even do a normal activity with my family.  And a fairly innocent one at that!  I gave in and got myself a little cup of frozen yogurt.  I got banana yogurt with shredded coconut..

It. was. heavenly.

I do not regret not finishing..and I am hopeful for my doctors appointment tomorrow to see if I can finally get some relief.

Whole 30 was certainly not a waste..here is what my take-away was for my Whole 22

  • I found out I love Swiss Chard (alot!)
  • All processed foods are now out..If I cant read it..I dont eat it
  • I can say no to breads. Burgers, hot dogs, chicken, turkey etc. is just as good sans bread
  • I can live without diet soda
  • I do like water and really love brewing my own iced tea
  • I can live without chocolate every day
  • I have way more willpower than I gave myself credit
  • Trader Joes is my new favorite grocery store
  • Vegetables can be a star in a meal
  • I am no longer going to get frankenfood (low-fat, fat free chemically modified to be ‘healthy’)
  • I am no longer afraid of ‘healthy fats’

I am very happy I gave it a go because there is so much I would still be clueless on..and I would still be eating chocolate everyday, drinking soda and my main beverage and still noshing on processed frankenfood.  Thank you Whole 30 :)

Whole 30 Half Way Point!!

Woooo! I have made it halfway!

I can’t lie its been a rough couple of days.  Not unbearable by any means but I am definitely seeing the grasp that some foods have on me which remind me why I am doing this!  There’s certain meals where I would normally have bread with it and felt a little deprived.  I can admit the foods I have been eating have been delicious and I have loved trying new things.  I have found an absolute love for swiss chard this week! Which resulted in me buying 2 more bags this week haha.  So there has certainly been great things about this whole process and I do not regret it even though I am eyeing my boyfriends chocolates I got him for Fathers Day (hes a great daddy to his doggies!)

I didn’t have much super awesome food but here are some things I have had the last few days

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Turkey Stir Fry – turkey, bacon, broccoli, artichoke hearts, almonds

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One of the more unique breakfasts ive had..I wasn’t feeling eggs..turkey roll ups with olives, sweet potatoes, fruit

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This was super delicious! cashew crusted shrimp, asparagus, cauliflower rice and homemade tarter sauce

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Nitrate free – grass fed all beef hot dog, sweet potato chips and grapes

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Shrimp stir fry – cauliflower rice, garlic, almonds, carrot, diced chicken

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Stuffed cabbage stew.  Put 2 lbs 90/10 ground beef, 1 bag of cruciferous vegetable blend, 1 bag of chopped cabbage, 3 cans of diced fire roasted tomato, small can of tomato paste, salt, pepper, garlic in the slow cooker and cooked about 6 hours on low.  Yum!

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And here is a photo of my stinkin’ cute pup Hanna Bananas.  She will be 3 years old tomorrow! She forever looks like a puppy though.  Can you even stand the cute right now?

Whole 30 Day 9, 10 & 11

Yeah I know I let 3 days go without blogging! Such a procrastinator…

I am at a computer all day long at work and the thought to log into my computer when I get home makes me sad.  Don’t get me wrong, I still surf the web but via tablet or phone so I can lounge on the couch and check the webs!

Anyhoo Whole 30 is still going very well.  I have been getting alot more cravings and I can totally admit I dream of what I will eat when I am done.  I should explain that further though…I dont have a desire to go back to all my bad habits fully and stuff my face with all the things I couldn’t have.  You won’t find me huddled in a corner taking bites off of a whole baguette in one hand, a wheel of cheese in the other, and chocolate remnants smeared across my lips.  I have definitely learned my lesson and opened my eyes to how important food is.  Correction – how important the right food is.

I am fully convinced processed foods are gone from my diet.  If i cannot pronounce the ingredients then I am not eating it.  I do plan on eating the ‘banned’ foods in moderation.  It’s just not sustainable for me long term to not eat breads, cheeses and chocolate!  I have just learned to retrain my brain to let myself know I dont need these things!  I may want them, and that’s okay!  But I dont have this undying attachment to these foods.  Which was terribly unhealthy.

So yes..Day 31…I want pizza.  I am not ashamed haha

I am proud to say the timeline of what to expect on Whole 30 said that day 10 & 11 were the days you were most likely to quit.  Im still going baby!

Heres some of the foods I have eaten the last couple days

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Turkey breast, chard with garlic & mushrooms, sweet potato with coconut milk

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Cumin cauliflower rice, chicken thighs, peppers & onions..so good!!

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Turkey bacon club salad.  Turkey, bacon, onion, tomato over greens

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egg salad topped with cherry tomato

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Eggs & Bacon with Avocado Ranch

Most of my other meals weren’t exactly pretty enough for photo ops but thats a look into what I have had!

Still going strong *flex*

Whole 30 Day 7 & 8 + Color Run

What a busy weekend!!

Saturday my boyfriend’s mom was visiting and staying over so I planned a fun filled evening!  We all went to a mini-theme park down the street from me called an ‘Azoosment Park’ because it has carnival style rides plus a petting zoo area.  It was incredibly fun and I am sad I didn’t go there sooner!  We got the kids good and tired and then I had a Whole 30 style BBQ at my house.

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Totally cute right?  Kaieligh & Logan

At first I thought I would make some stuff for the BBQ that were not Whole 30 compliant for the sake of my  guests..

Then I thought about it..why is just having meats, fruits, and veggies so taboo?  We dont need starch filled salads and sides and processed chips to have a delicious exciting meal together!  So I went against my initial thoughts and went with a meal where I was allowed to have everything!

My Menu
Deviled Eggs (homemade mayo)
Grilled Vegetables
Marinated Olives
Mashed Sweet Potato
Chopped fruit with coconut
Grilled Chicken w/ Avocado Ranch
Grilled Shrimp

Everything was super delicious and guilt free and everyone was happy! (me included for sure)

Whole 30 BBQ

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eggs, mustard, relish, homemade mayo, salt, pepper, paprika

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Grilled veggies – just olive oil, salt, pepper

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Mashed sweet potato with a little coconut milk

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Grilled chicken & shrimp – hot dogs for the kiddos

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Avocado Ranch Recipe

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Super yum.

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Day 8 Race Day!!

My first 5k EVER..and it was awesome!

For breakfast I had some leftover sweet potato with grilled vegetables and a hardboiled egg.  It was so early that I wasn’t super hungry but I knew I couldn’t skip breakfast when I was going to be running.  I did have a banana just before the race though for a little extra fuel.  After the race I enjoyed a tasty Apple Pie Lara Bar.  Now for the fun part…RACE PICTURES!

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Love love loved this run!

My brother and sister in law were going to run with me but unfortunately it sold out before they could sign up.  But my brother being the awesome big brother he is woke up early, drove to the city just to jump in at the end of the race to finish the last leg of the race with me :)

My mom did take a picture of us but my mom isn’t super awesome at technology so apparently the picture doesn’t exist.

But my mom deserves credit too for waking up stupid early for me to get there before the race started.  I hate driving in the city so I needed the moral support to even get to the race!

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I finished the race in 36 minutes which is a personal record for me.  This was even including the 3 stops for the congested color areas and a stop for a photo with my brother (so I thought…)  Without the stops I probably would have finished around 32 minutes which would have been a huge record for me.  I will keep at it!

Since we were right near the ever-so-popular photo opportunity ‘The Bean’ we decided to stop there after the race

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I headed home then and took a well needed shower..had some lunch..and totally crashed for about 3 hours.  I think due to the excitement of the color run I didn’t sleep very well.  I think I never achieved deep sleep because of fear of not waking up to the alarm at 5am so I was beat..

(btw for the sake of whole 30 lunch was all natural grass fed beef hot dogs with sweet potato chips)

Breakfast and Lunch were not very impressive photo-wise but dinner sure was!  Made an amazing grilled pork chop dinner. Yum!

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Probably my favorite dinner so far.  Garlic grilled pork chop, seasoned cauliflower rice, grilled asparagus and sauteed granny smith apples.  For the apples I sauteed them in ghee with a little salt and cinnamon.  Went super awesome with the pork chop and doubled as a little dessert treat!

Overall Whole 30 is going well.  I will admit im getting a few more urges than I have the previous days.  When I had my hot dog at lunch I missed the bun, after the run I really wanted an ice cold fountain drink, was craving some sweets.  Mainly my cravings have been carbs.  I have been doing a very good job at redirecting my cravings to something compliant and it’s working well.  I haven’t even remotely had the urge to give up..just a few more urges to eat things I shouldn’t!

So sad this weekend is just about done.  It was a really awesome weekend :)

Whole 30 Day 5 + Backsquat Experience

Whoever said today was supposed to be the grumpy day on Whole 30 is crazy!
I had an amazing day!

I ate delicious food, had a ton of energy, wasn’t sick, and killed it at the gym!

I even have a video today! Yay! I will let you take a look at that and follow up with my gym story in writing and my foods for today..enjoy!

So If you didn’t watch the video I will explain further here.
I saw my trainer today and he said he was going to show me how to do backsquats.  Which I was stupid excited about.  All the blogs, instagrams, pinterest boards I follow all the sexy fit people do these backsquats.  Yay I am a sexy fit people!
So anyway..He had me do the bar only and asked how that was.  I said it was alright….so he added a 20# weight to each side.  He asked me to go..I said it’s kinda hard!  He adds more weight.  I said its really hard.  He adds another weight..I said wow thats super hard.  So he says he will keep the weight right there and we will do 2 more sets.  Sure enough he says “I think you can do more…” I tell him adamantly that it was very hard!! So another guy in the gym says “You can do it! Dont be afraid of the weight”.  I informed him im not afraid of the weight im afraid of falling over! So I trust my trainer since hes been working with me and he is all about safety so I had to trust myself.  I go under the bar to lift it..sure enough I lifted it and got into position.  I was facing the mirror so I could see everyone behind me.  A bunch of buff weight lifter guys stopped what they were doing and watched me.  One even nudged another guy and said “see that?!”  It was awesome!!!!
That was my empowering gym story of the day!
Onto foods!
Today was easy for me..I am loving what I am eating.  Its totally new flavors and textures and so refreshing to have something other than just my usual sandwiches and chips and breaded whatever and processed junk.  I honestly thought I would get more cravings!  It’s only day 5 but I feel absolutely confident in the days to come!
Breakfast Day 5
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Not a pretty photo..sorry! But I was running out the door for work.  It tasted awesome though I assure you.   2 hard boiled eggs, 1/2 avocado, diced red onion, diced jalapeno, salt & pepper
Lunch Day 5
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I know I had this everyday! I made alot of it! I didnt get a ton of different groceries since I was having trouble eating anyway and this was small, cold, soft and delicious!  Blueberry Waldorf Salad over spring mix with cherry tomato.  I promise it’s gone now!
Snack Day 5
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Berries! I also had a green apple with almond butter and a Lara Bar (apple pie) before my workout
Dinner Day 5
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Tuna Cakes with Green Olives.  Recipe here
They were super tasty but a little softer than I hoped for.  I fried them in a super hot pan and they were still pretty smooshy.  But the flavor rocked.  I made my own ranch dressing to go with it.  Yum yum yum!
Bring it on Day 6!

Whole 30 Day 4

Feeling so much better!!

Much much better day :) I am very proud that I stuck with this even when I felt miserable!  When I feel sick I tend to go to comfort foods and well that is hard to do when I cleared out the pantry and fridge!  So I fought the odds..got through it..time to embrace the program!

Breakfast Day 4

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Cauliflower rice, brussel sprouts, over easy egg, olives, chicken sausage

Lunch Day 4

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Blueberry waldorf salad over spring mix

Snack Day 4

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watermelon, blueberry, coconut & cashews
love love love love this!
also had a banana & a hard boiled egg during the day

Dinner Day 4

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zucchini noodles, caramelized onions, garlic, jalapeno chicken sausage and cherry tomatoes

Day 4 went pretty well.  I will admit I did have the undying urge to add parmesan cheese to my dinner.  I wouldn’t have done it (mainly because I dont have any….) but it’s so odd how these old habits have such a grasp on me!  When I sat down to eat my meal I quickly realized it was delicious and did not need any added cheese! It was good all on its own.  My other struggle today was I still track my food even though during the challenge you dont necesarily have to.  After I tracked it said I was way over on fat grams for the day.  I instantly freaked out!  I started googling any information to help me know what my fat intake should be.  I stumbled upon this article and felt a little better.  It pretty much explains the health benefits of healthy fats as opposed to the junk fats from processed foods.  All food I consumed today was considered a ‘healthy fat’ so I need to get out of that mindset that all fat is bad.  It’s hard! Overall though it was a good day.  I’m excited to get back into the gym tomorrow with my trainer.

The Whole 30 “what to expect” calendar shows tomorrow should be a grumpy day..watch out!

Whole 30 Day 2 & 3

I am so behind!

But I promise to keep up on this better..I had gotten so sick Monday which traveled into Tuesday

At least I had an excuse, right?

I still kept on plan and here’s what I had Monday & Tuesday..

It wasn’t a lot of food because I seriously didn’t feel well.  I was put on a bunch of meds and it made me not even want to look at food!

Breakfast Day 2

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Hardboiled egg, avocado, chicken sausage

Lunch Day 2

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Apparently I didnt take a picture..But i had my blueberry waldorf salad with a side of sweet potato

Dinner Day 3

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So this meal had potential…Too bad I couldn’t eat it :(
Flounder topped with homemade mayo and olive tapenade, cauliflower rice and brussel sprouts.
I tried to eat it…and then I felt lunch coming up..so the dog got a nice meal!

As far as emotions go on Whole 30 for today…Didn’t really have any..I was miserable due to sickness not whole 30!

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Day 3 I was starving!!! I am sure mostly due to not eating much the day before. I also think since I haven’t been having carbonated drinks it was making my stomach feel very empty all day.  But I started feeling better at least :)

Breakfast Day 3

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Cauliflower rice, zucchini noodles, chicken sausage and olives

Lunch Day 3

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Repeat of day 2.  Blueberry waldorf salad with a side of sweet potato

Snack Day 3

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watermelon, blueberries, shredded coconut

Dinner Day 3

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Hamburger with an over easy egg, olive tapenade, brussel sprouts and avocado.  Totally yum!

Day 3 went pretty easy for me.  I still feel like the lack of carbonated drinks is making me feel false hunger.  The plus side is I haven’t had the urge to have one at all :)

Whole 30 Day 1

I survived Day 1!

It was a rough day but not due to my new eating habits.  I have been having really severe mouth pain so it was hard to eat anything.  I only ate around 1,000 calories today because it was just too hard to eat anything.  Even water hurts! This is also why I could not video blog today..

I did use my time wisely today though to get prepared for the rest of week.  Even not feeling well I had to make sure I was prepared for the week ahead especially just starting this challenge.  I was tired so there were a lot of breaks in between but I finished!  Overall meal wise day 1 was easy.  I will say I did have an urge for chocolate but nothing I couldn’t control.  I did not miss my diet dr pepper at all today..didn’t really think about it until now honestly.

Here’s what I ate today

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Monkey Salad
banana, almond butter, shredded coconut
I saw this on multiple websites so I will just credit this one Good Cheap Eats

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Hamburger, avocado and red onion over green beans sauteed in ghee

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Quick egg salad
1 hardboiled egg, a small spoon of homemade mayo, red onion & olive tapenade

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Zucchini noodles with bacon and scallops with a side of watermelonRecipe inspiration – Meatified

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Aside from all these tasty dishes I did a ton of prep for the week..

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Prepped a ziploc of cauliflower rice

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smooshed up some steamed sweet potato for tuna cakes

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prepped some brussel sprouts with bacon as a quick grab veggie

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homemade mayo! 1 cup evoo, 1 egg, pinch of mustard powder, pinch of salt..mix with stick blender

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Blueberry Waldorf Salad
A whole 30 version of the one I have posted about before1 lb chicken, 1 cup blueberries, 2 stalks celery, diced red onion to taste, 1/4 cup walnuts,  a few spoons of homemade mayo and a small spoon of coconut cream

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Brats with peppers and onions
I made this for my boyfriends lunches though.  He said he will be mostly whole30 compliant with me.  I am so glad hes been supportive through all my crazy ideas :)

Wow I was a busy lady!  It was a good day..Just hope I feel better soon!

Onto Day 2!

Why I am doing Whole30

For those of you who are not familiar with the Whole 30 challenge it’s all about eating whole natural foods.

Meats, veggies, fruit.

No garbage

It’s very strict on eliminating legumes, dairy, grains, sugar, alcohol and all processed foods.  No items with ingredients you cannot pronounce!

I know at first glance this seems like one of those fad diets with promises to drop tons of weight in a way that isn’t sustainable…

I understand that.  The first time I heard about this I went HA! No way – not for me – no chance!

But then I educated myself…Here is what whole 30 is meant to be…

The people who created Whole 30 wanted to take certain food groups that are causing us to feel sick all the time.  Inflammation, head aches, sinus infections, auto-immune disorders, joint pains, allergies..you name it..food can be causing it.  I don’t want to come off as a hippie but I know that I personally eat too much processed foods.  Look at the ingredient list on foods in your pantry, can you read all the ingredients?  Isn’t that a little bit scary?  I used to not worry about it and think to myself why would they sell this if it was bad for us?  Because as long as people are getting paychecks they don’t care what these foods are doing to our bodies.

I personally have been feeling pretty terrible lately.  I have been working out and eating “right” since January.  I have lost 26 pounds..

Yet I was still asking myself “At what point am I going to start feeling better?”

I was still over-tired, still getting headaches, still getting chronic sinus infections..

I have also been battling a potential auto-immune disorder that is super rare..and super hard to diagnose.  I am in the works of seeing a specialist but to find someone who knows about this disorder is proving to be a difficult task.  Not to mention if I do get diagnosed the drugs that are involved are pretty hardcore.  If I could possibly get all of this under control with only food I would be crazy to not try.  If it doesn’t work…well then I know.  Throughout all of this I have been getting medical care from my family physician.  I am not trying to take matters in my own hands without having a professional looking into my matters.  Truth is nothing is working.  The book title for Whole 30 says it all…It starts with food.

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Aside from the physical effects Whole 30 also really targets the mental.  Even natural sugars and sugar substitutes are banned due to the grasp sugar in general.  Faux desserts? That’s out too.  Even ice cream made of bananas is still giving your brain this idea that you’re having ice cram and soothes the anxiety you may have from eliminating your ‘treats’.  I most definitely have an addiction to sugars and sodas.  Even though I switched to diet long ago I still can’t get through a day feeling like I need it.  Our bodies don’t need chocolate cake, soda, candy, bread etc.

My hopes for Whole 30

Better sleep – I have used a sleep aid every night for years

Control my auto-immune disorder – Have you ever had a canker sore?  Now imagine having 20 of them at the same time.
That’s what happens to me during a flare up.  I can’t eat, drink, talk and it totally ruins my sleep even worse.

Reduce Headaches - I pop Aleve like its candy

Reduce sinus infections - I have chronic sinusitis.  I have been told my body attacks the good bacteria in my nose..
to me that also sounds like auto-immune

Fix how I think about food - I cannot go a day without a diet dr pepper or a piece of chocolate

Lose weight - Not my main focus but it will be a definite bonus!

Keep checking back..I plan on showing my food diary daily.  With it being summer I may get busy and end up putting a few days into one post but I will do my best to keep up daily.  Also I would like to make as many of them as I can video blogs.  I want to prove to you all that I didn’t die ;)