I lost my voice today.

I’m not quite sure if it’s just due to drainage of my allergies. Perhaps I’ve caught a virus. I don’t know what the source was but the fact remains, I lost my voice today. This was a perfect example of those instances as the saying goes: you don’t know what you have until you lose it.

I’m doing what I can to try and get my voice back tomorrow. One, because it will be Friday and that means I still have one more day of work. Two, because my job does require me to be on the phone and when I don’t have a voice I am forced to do incredibly boring admin work. Three, I would like to have a voice when I visit friends and family back in Dallas when we visit this weekend.

So today, I’ve been actively seeking advice on how to get my voice back and here is what I’ve been told…

  • Mix cayenne pepper and water and drink it.
  • Gargle salt and water.
  • Take a shot of whiskey with green tea and lemon.
  • Take a shot of Jack, honey, and lemon.
  • Take a decongestant for sinus.
  • Drink lots of lukewarm water.
  • Drink a lot of warm tea with honey.
  • Get plenty of rest.

I’ve done almost all of the above except for the ones with alcohol. I’m just not a very big drinker and I don’t like the way it makes me feel. I will probably go to bed soon despite it being on 9:07pm. I’ll tell you what though… there is some comfort in knowing that this is only temporary.

Top 10 things to do fall asleep faster.

  1. Turn off ALL electronic devices.
    Whether it’s your phone, iPad, TV, etc… turn it off or at least put it out of reach. Try not to use any of these devices at least 30 minutes before going to bed. No checking your email, text messages, etc… it’s time for bed.
  2. Take a melatonin.
    Sometimes we need that extra nudge to fall asleep. I think over-the-counter “sleeping aids” are known to have addictive attributes so when I need it I prefer to take natural melatonin.
  3. Read a book.
    It never fails, when I read a book while in bed it only takes a few chapters before drowsiness takes over especially if I’ve already done at least 2 other things on this list.
  4. Listen to natural sounds track.
    There is an APP that I like to use called Sleep Pillow because it allows me to choose certain sounds (crackling fire and rain is my favorite combination) and I can choose to have it loop and set a timer so it will automatically shut off after a certain amount of time.
  5. Take a shower.
    If I don’t do anything else this is the one thing I do every night. Showers have a way of regulating your body temperature and I sincerely believe showering before bed really helps one relax. At the very least I recommend you wash your face, it makes a difference.
  6. Make the room cool temperature.
    I get cold very easily so this one isn’t as critical for me however my husband cannot fall asleep at all if the room temperature is not cool.
  7. Take the time to stretch.
    When you find yourself tossing and turning sometimes getting out of bed and stretching your arms and legs help.
  8. Drink water.
    I don’t mean drink a whole bottle of water or anything because that will definitely wake you up in the middle of night because you’d have to use the bathroom. Sometimes half a glass is enough to satisfy your thirst. While you’re at it though, you should probably relieve yourself in the restroom if you haven’t already.
  9. Put on loose clothing.
    Some people like to sleep naked. I can’t do that as I get too sweaty when I don’t have clothes on (weird I know). Jeans, longsleeves, socks (unless it’s really cold for some reason) will not do, put on some loose clothing to ensure a successful wind down to dream land.
  10. Make the bed.
    When all else fails get up, make the bed then crawl in. I know it sounds crazy at a glance but seriously, if nothing else has worked, why not? ūüėČ

A moment of reflection.

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Here I am sitting at a local cafe drinking my earl grey tea. ¬†In the last 6 months I have learned to drink my tea without any additives (sugar, cream, etc). ¬†I drink tea and coffee straight now actually. ¬†Doing so has made me gain a whole new appreciation for both types of beverages. ¬†As a society we’ve been conditioned to think that sweeter is better. ¬†That brown is ugly.

Did you know that in 2014 the CDC released a report that 29.1 Million people in the United States have diabetes? (http://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/pubs/statsreport14/national-diabetes-report-web.pdf) It’s kind of crazy to think about. ¬†I know that we can’t live forever nor would I want to. However, I plan on living life with many experiences and diabetes, high blood pressure, daily prescriptions, is not the type of experience I’m looking for. ¬†I’ve developed a serious appreciation for food out here. ¬†I mean like REAL food. ¬†Not nachos, french fries, etc but like… fish, chicken, steak, vegetables, and fruits. ¬†There are so many things that I’ve learned how to cook (as well as failed experiments lol) the options of cooking/eating REAL food is virtually unlimited. ¬†Fast food is convenient I know but I just wish there were more restaurants that offer GOOD food at fast food prices.

At the end of the month we are moving back to Texas. ¬†Which I am REALLY excited about. ¬†Don’t get me wrong California is BEAUTIFUL and I’m not looking forward to the ridiculous heat or flies and mosquitos. …but Texas is home. ¬†I am also ready to get back into the employment world. ¬†I think I make a pretty awesome housewife but it’s definitely not my calling. ¬†I’ll give it another go when kids come into the picture but yes, I’m ready to find a job again. These 6 months has really given me the opportunity to figure out new personal goals. ¬†2016 is going to be a fantastic year. ¬†2015 has been great but I can already tell the rest of this year is going to be dedicated to getting to where my husband and I want to be in 2016 financially, spiritually, etc.

Oh I’m almost out of tea. I guess it’s time to wrap this up. I will leave this post with some “food” for thought. ūüėČ ¬†When was the last time you sat down and reflected on something, anything other than the daily grind you find yourself in? ¬†Feel free to share your thought by leaving a comment!

Poison Oak – YUCK! Ugh!

poison oakFor the last week I’ve been recovering from Poison Oak. ¬†It still looks HORRIBLE but at least I don’t feel terrible any more. ¬†It started off as a few little bumps and then it turned into this. I finally went into see the doctor and within seconds of seeing my rash she declared that it was poison oak. ¬†I’m just glad it’s not the shingles. I know I know, I’m probably too young to have the shingles but I was never known to have the strongest immune system and after Googling “rashes” for days it started to seem like a possibility!

I posted this picture and many of my FB friends and family chimed in with their suggestions ultimately for myself I ended up going to the doctors’ office, received a shot (of what I don’t remember!) but it was something to relieve the swelling/reaction, got prescribed some pills.

Other Tips/Remedies you can try if you want to avoid going to the doctor and are pretty sure it’s poison oak.
WASH EVERYTHING THAT COULD BE CONTAMINATED
Bedsheets/covers
Clothes
Dogs/Pets
Jackets/Hoodies

BUY TECHNU
It will help you wash out the oils that causes our bodies to react so violently.  Why is this better than just taking a shower with soap?  Letting the hot water and using soap may not be enough to remove the contaminating oils and it may even cause you to spread the oils all over your body.

OATMEAL is not just for breakfast anymore
They say that you can actually just run a bath and grind your oatmeal and soak in it to relieve the itch.  They also have oatmeal products e.g. soap that may help as well.

CALADRYL is your friend
Someone decided to go ahead and mix the two best solutions for poison oak and poison ivy Benadryl and Calamine lotion. A friend also told me that you can make a paste with the caladryl with echinacea which is also used for those with chickenpox to help dry it out. ¬†If you’re looking for a solution that you may have in the kitchen I’ve also been told use a paste made of vinegar and bakingsoda.

Other Notes
Scratching your blisters will not spread the rash but it will cause bacterial skin infections – JUST DON’T DO IT.
Try to shower/bathe in cool/cold water because hot water will open up your pores more the oils WILL penetrate your skin more.
Most people recover within 1-2 weeks.

Have you ever experience poison oak, poison ivy, or poison sumac? ¬†Leave a comment and tell us about your experience! ¬†I’d love to hear if you have any other tips or remedies as well.

I’m Not Dead.

I have no excuses. ¬†I’ve been lazy – such a slacker Sharon! ¬†I just wanted to report that I am not dead. ¬†I’m going to give you a quick overview of what I’ve been up to then leave a special treat from YouTube P!NK’s song “I’m Not Dead” and the lyrics below. Enjoy!

So I’m almost done with my Whole30 Program. Finishing up Day 29 to be exact.

Positive thoughts:

  • Looking in the mirror my face seems to be less pudgy. lol
  • My arms are a little more defined (still flabby but I know if I start working out they’ll be toned soon especially if I keep eating right at least 90% of the time)
  • My jeans/shorts no longer require me to lay on the bed to zip up and my buttons aren’t threatening to pop out on me
  • I like wearing tank tops again as they are not showing my “rolls” as much. haha
  • My boobs are smaller (which is fantastic because I can wear my old bras again)
  • My abdominal area is starting to take shape (again, if I keep eating right and start working out I know I can maintain/improve this area)
  • My hair seems longer? ¬†I will have to take an after photo and compare haha
  • As for my butt… well, I need to hit the stairs and squats to improve that area!

My favorite part of the Whole30 is not having the same mentality like “hmm… what should I eat?” but it’s more like “OH MY GOD it’s almost MEAL 2 and I haven’t cooked my chicken yet!” lol ¬†Seriously, I mean, I’ve always LOVED food but now it’s more like a priority and I’m really starting to think of my meals as… what would give me the nutrients I need to get through until my next meal? ¬†As opposed to “hmm.. what sounds good?” I mean, the fact that my food have been DELICIOUS is absolutely a bonus. ¬†I don’t want to be a zombie any more and just go for the latest appetizing commercial on TV where flavor is OVERKILL and nutrition is compromised.

I’ve gotten so used to throwing my simple meals together… I’m kind of afraid of the next step: the reintroduction. ¬†I’ve got the basic idea of how it’s supposed to work… reintroduce myself to “regular foods” but in increments with specific groups (e.g. legumes, grain, dairy, etc). ¬†I’m not going to lie, I’m kind of scared it’s like meeting someone for the first time – not really sure what to expect. haha

I know that everyone is different and that your plan of a reintroduction may not be the same as mine just like how I may react to certain foods while you don’t. ¬†I read that if I don’t particularly like¬†a certain type of food then I probably shouldn’t even touch it again (e.g. red/kidney/pinto beans). ¬†What I’m really looking forward to is Tiramisu, chocolate glazed donut, ice cream, mushroom cheese burger, and 1lbs. The Boiling Crab Shrimp. (Not at the same time or even day of course). I haven’t created a game plan yet and I SHOULD. ¬†In fact, I made a pact with myself that I am to keep eating like I’m still on the whole 30 until I get a solid plan down for the reintroduction phase. ¬†I don’t want my 30 days of good food to go to waste. It’s time to get intuned with my body and learn what it doesn’t/does like.

A bunch of other stuff is going on but you know what… I’m going to leave those for other entries. ūüėČ

Without further ado…

Lyrics:

I’m Not Dead
BY: P!NK

Yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah, yeah

There’s all these cracks, crack of sunlight
Crack in the mirror, on your lips
It’s the moment of a sunset Friday
When our conversations twist

It’s the fifth day of ice on a new tattoo
But the ice should be on our heads
We only spun the wheel to catch ourselves
So we weren’t left for death

And I was never looking for approval from anyone but you
And though this journey is over, I’ll go back if you ask me to

I’m not dead just floating
Right between the ink of your tattoo
In the belly of the beast we turned into

I’m not scared just changing
Right beyond the cigarette and the devilish smile
You’re my crack of sunlight

You can do the math a thousand ways
But you can’t erase the facts
That others come and others go
But you always come back

I’m a winter flower underground
Always thirsty for summer rain
And just like the change of seasons
I know you’ll be back again

I’m not dead just floating
Underneath the ink of my tattoo
I’ve tried to hide my scars from you

I’m not scared just changing
Right beyond the cigarette and the devilish smile
You’re my crack of sunlight, oh

I’m not dead just yet

I’m not dead I’m just floating
Doesn’t matter where I’m going, I’ll find you
(I’m not scared at all)

Underneath the cuts and bruises
Finally gained what no one loses, I’ll find you
(I will find you)

I’m not dead just floating
I’m not scared just changing
You’re my crack of sunlight, yeah

Songwriters
Moore, Alecia B / Mann, Billy

Published by
Lyrics © Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC

Get back into the groove!

So I just walked 1.37miles in 25 minutes… I don’t know if that’s good. I used to walk at least 10K steps per day. I’ve been letting this new food program distract me from my fitness goals. No more excuses Sharon get back into the groove. Tomorrow morning I have every intention of getting back to my walking routine. I must say though that I’m feeling pretty good about this Whole30 program. I haven’t eaten any non complaint foods for 7 days now (e.g no grains, sugar, etc) and I’m only missing ice cream just a little bit. Ok I’m missing it a lot but it’s ok! Only 23 more days to go and I can let up just…a little bit.

Grilled sockeye salmon – Whole30 compliant

Grilled sockeye salmon – Whole30 compliant

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Dinner tonight was DELICIOUS. ¬†The recipe can be found here:¬†Whole30 Grilled Salmon¬†Officially I just completed Day 4 of Whole30 (I would be at Day 8 had I not messed up earlier!) but that’s OK. ¬†Two things that I’ve noticed about this plan of eating good food three times a day… 1) I don’t feel gross after eating any of my meals 2) When I am hungry for my next meal I am HUNGRY. ¬†Like… it’s not a matter of hmm… I feel like eating this or that or maybe it’s time for me to eat? NO. IT IS TIME TO EAT. ¬†I was not prepared for lunch today so I threw something together:

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Yep… that’s mixed salad, sardines, pecans, and a banana. ¬†My mouth was saying ew but my stomach after half the plate was saying “THANK GOD!” ¬†I’m not starving myself I’m really not. I eat a lot probably more than I have in the past just less snacking and better quality food. ¬†One of these days maybe I’ll dedicate one of my blog posts to my favorite meals on the The Whole30: The 30-Day Guide to Total Health and Food Freedom plan. ¬†That probably won’t be until September or October though. ¬†I am currently keeping a log on the Whole30 community forum however that particular board where I keep my log isn’t accessible to the public (sorry!)