A big hello to the DnH world! I’m Shavonne. I’m excited to be part of the Diapers-n-Heels team. As Alli mentioned earlier, I’m a working mom of two little ones. And by little I mean I have a two year old son and a three month old daughter (little). I can’t wait to share my journey of living and eating clean with you all. Its a work in progress, but I thought the first post should give a little explanation as to why I’m taking my family on this journey.
Early on we learned that our son had eczema. I tried everything I could to help relieve his pain. We quickly learned that we had to steer clear of all bath and laundry products that had any perfumes or dyes. After about 20 different types of soap trials, we finally found one that his body wouldn’t have a reaction to. As he got a little bigger, the symptoms didn’t seem as severe and I wasn’t as concerned. Then when our daughter was born we quickly learned that she had dairy allergies. I also noticed after about a month that she was already getting diaper rashes and patches of irritation on her skin. As I was up at nights, as you are with a newborn, I started doing lots of research. Throw into the mix that my husband had also developed some sort of bacteria in his stomach that was making him very ill. RED FLAG! Something has to change!
I made the decision that we were going to be switching to “Real” foods and make simple changes in the way we live our lives so that we can all be healthier and just overall feel better. We’ve been on this journey for about a month now. It’s been a challenge, but a fun one. I’m learning more each day, and as I learn, I am teaching my family. I want my kids to grow up thinking that its normal to eat a variety of colors and try new things. I want them to be outside, enjoy nature, and learn about how different things grow and are made.
Here are just a few steps that we took to get started living clean:
1. A Gradual Change:
I knew that to make this change a success that I would need to make it a gradual change. I couldn’t do a total revamp of my kitchen overnight. My husband would be pretty upset if his favorite Oreos were in the trash, and I’m pretty sure my two year old would break down in tears if he saw his beloved Goldfish alongside the Oreos. Not to mention, our bank account would not be very happy completely stocking a kitchen all at once. So, I decided to do a gradual change of food. Once the “bad” food was gone, it was gone. Only to be replaced with a “Real” alternative.
2. Read the Labels:
New Rule when shopping – do not put it in your cart until you read the label. No more buying foods that are made with ingredients that I wouldn’t normally cook with. My kitchen is not a chemistry lab – only naturally made food belongs there. Note – this doesn’t end with food. I was surprised when I read the labels of cleaning and bath products. One of my fave soaps actually says on the label “Excessive use may cause… Infections” Yikes!! I couldn’t believe it!!
3. Plan Ahead:
Take it week by week. I find that if I plan ahead, we are more likely to have a successful week. Set your family up for success by creating a menu for the week, and shop accordingly. It’s easy to get busy during the week and wind up scrambling at the last minute to decide what to make for dinner. It was times like these that usually resulted in having pizza delivered…yet again. Let me just say, another Red Flag was when I started getting emails with coupons because we had been ordering from a certain pizza place once a week. Lesson learned. I now plan at least one super easy meal into my menu plan; that way we have a quick go-to dinner that’s fresh, quick, easy, and delicious. How great is that??!!
4. Get the entire family involved:
It’s definitely going to be a group effort to make this journey a successful one. I like to get my son involved as much as possible. Although cooking with a 2 year old is not always easy, it sure is fun. His eyes literally light up when I ask if he wants to help me. Sure the kitchen gets a bit messier, but I’ve learned that the more he’s involved, the more variety of food he’s willing to try. I am certainly one proud mama when we’re grocery shopping and buying our fruits and veggies and he proclaims loudly “Mmmm! I wike those!” (Please note that his speech is still a work in progress 🙂 )
This morning I noticed that we had a few bananas that were just screaming to be made into Banana Bread. I had found a new recipe that used whole wheat flour, coconut oil , and honey as the sweetener. As someone who absolutely loves baking, I was eager to put baking with “Real” ingredients to the test. I pulled a chair up for our son and sat our 3 month old on the counter to watch. Never too early to train a little chef in my opinion. The bread made for a fantastic breakfast and was served with some fresh berries on the side. Talk about a great start to the week!