Archives for: July 2005
Lucky boys I have. The A got his wish and is a non-secretor. Now I can relax a little over all the lamb and turkey that child devours. And the O is very relieved to discover that he is a secretor. I am too, he eats several apples a day... it would be hard for him to relinquish those, as well as some of the other constraints of the O nonnie recommendations. So we are a household of two A non-secretors, an O secretor and a B secretor. A little bit easier now for meal planning... and I have noticed that I have reduced my carbs and increased my intake of protein and veggies as a result which is healthier for me, too.
We recently went to see the Chihuly exhibit at our local Fine Arts Center. I was prepared to be disappointed with the exhibit but was quite surprised at how moved I was by it. The next day we took our boys to see it too. I think it is important to expose them to a working artist gaining notoriety in his lifetime who is also having such an impact on the world of blown glass. So fantastic to see his pieces live, in a gallery, perfectly lit as light is such an important element in viewing glass. And how as an artist he pushes the envelope of his medium in size, scale, shape, presentation...
But the color... oh the colors!! Unbelievably vibrant, pulsating colors. Truly speaking to the heart of a B with all those incredible colors. Dale Chihuly was influenced in his early career by Native American artifacts, particularly weaving and basketry. Our Fine Arts Center has an extensive collection of Southwestern art and exhibited his pieces in conjunction with several Navajo blankets and exquisite baskets... quite a wonderful presentation.
But my favorite part of the exhibit was Dale Chihuly’s paintings. As he no longer blows glass and is more of a director of his works rather than a producer, he has turned to painting as a creative outlet. A whole gallery full of his paintings from floor to ceiling of the most colorful works I have ever seen... full of bright whimsy and his characteristic style seen in his designs for glass.
Viewing this exhibit reminded me, once again, of the importance of color for myself (if you saw my living room, you’d know... trust me...) and for many B’s too, I think. If you ever get a chance to see his work... it really is worth it just from the color perspective.
And if you find yourself in a dull moment remember to look for the color in it. It will give your heart wings.
The menfolk of my family FINALLY got around to sending in their secretor test samples and so far we have only received my husband’s results... Type A Non-Secretor it is. Which I knew it would be. For months now, whenever he has some sort of health complaint I always retort with, "That’s because you’re a non-secretin’ celiac". The gluten intolerance he could wrap his brain around but with the non-secretor suggestion I would get the compulsory spousal eyeroll. Now there is no refuting it. And he is not a happy camper.
We were shopping for groceries shortly after he received his test results. He asked me what types of food he should be focusing on now. So I ran off the litany of flesh foods that he would be wise to incorporate into his diet that were beneficial for him, and that he’ll need to decrease grain consumption... really eating more towards the O side of a Type A. Being that he has been a grain-loving vegetarian for the past 30 years this is a particularly bitter pill for him to swallow. He looked at me and said,"How about some food suggestions where I won’t have to change my world view."
Ahhh, yes.... there’s the rub, isn’t it?? We want to improve our health, minds, spirit, but when doing so challenges all that we have come to believe to be true... there is the tendency to hold on desperately to our precious beliefs. Even when it comes to our health. Especially when it comes to our health.
For years, we have talked about the possible need for some dietary changes as he ages; he might need to add some meat, and especially fish, to his diet and now with the knowledge of his non-secretor status, even more so. He does agree with this notion... in theory. But putting it into practice will be a difficult challenge for him, a letting go of a long-held version of himself to make way for a new one. He has not had the best health and energy in recently. This, he knows. But that his health and energy may be impacted by being vegetarian for most of his life??? ... very difficult for him to come to terms with.
So we are taking baby steps. The last flesh food he relinquished (at age 12) was sardines. He used to love sardines. So I bought some extra sardines with the hope that he has the willingness to try them and see how they react in his body.
Willingness... that is really all it takes when confronted with a challenge to our world view. Willingness to see a new perspective... willingness to challenge what we hold to be true... willingness to let ourselves evolve in line with our direct experiences of the world... willingness to at least try.
And the boys??? Well, since they both know they are half-way to being non-secretors, the A is hoping beyond hope that he is a nonnie and looking forward to all the foods he will be able to add back into his diet (like lamb, shitake mushrooms, tomatoes). And the O is praying that he has only the one non-secretor gene.
Soon now, we should know...
Sure is the grilling time of year here in the northern hemisphere. Waaay too hot to cook inside, or outdoors for that matter. But... there is the issue of meat consumption, and not something I like to experiment with in the raw foods department. And with an O in the house, I still feel the need to prepare meat for our evening meal.
But, I have noticed something. We no longer use buns for burgers, buffalo brats, turkey dogs and the like. I used to use the organic wheat ones for awhile... then went the way of spelt and sprouted wheat and now... nothing. And the funny thing is that no one seems to notice that we are a sans buns household. I just have a side of brown rice with my burger if I feel the need for a carb with my meal as do my kids and of course we have veggies, veggies, and more veggies. But... no complaints from the bun kings yet regarding our current bun-less status. A new milestone.
Tonight I was in that certain kind of mood for something to eat and feel guilty about later... y’all know what I mean... OK... all you of the female persuasion know what I mean. I complained to my husband that we have no junk to eat in the house. I then saw a carton of heavy cream in the fridge... poured a little into a small bowl, added a splash of vanilla and teeny bit of powdered sugar and hand-whipped the cream to a nice consistency and used it as a topping for fresh sliced peaches. Ahhh... instant decadence... and with only a tiny bit of guilt.
Sometimes... you just can’t help but love being a B...
This year, for the first time as an adult, I have not planted a garden nor a single plant all season. This was not a conscious decision on my part. I turned the garden over, began weeding, bought vegetable seeds that were beneficial or neutral for all members of the family and... suddenly it is July... and no garden...
I began to ponder this action in my life. Even in years of severe drought conditions with minimal watering allowed I still planted at least something. I love to garden. What is going on inside of me that I let the gardening season pass me by?
Ah, yes... there was the clue... my garden this year is an internal one. I’ve been stripping away the layers to expose the fertile soil of my belly-earth, making way for new growth, new awareness, new possibilities. And as I clear away the debris that no longer serves, I wonder... what seeds shall I be sowing now? How do I prepare the soil so that what I want to manifest comes to full harvest? Will my garden be able to survive the inevitable earth-shaking storms that are such a potent part of midlife?
These are the questions I am living as I tend to my inner garden.
Today, I walked around the yard to the cottage-style border gardens I have growing alongside our house. I have not really taken the time all season to see any of the flowers and herbs growing there... and quite surprised there was anything growing at all. And I realized how I have missed the beauty of the flowers... the first green push through the soil, slender stalks reaching toward the sun, soft, yet firm buds poised for the burst into blossom. And the splay of full-bloom color that always lightens a B’s heart.
Yes, I will surely make space in my garden for full-flowering in all its glory.
It is so sad... our little European mart of a health food store was sold recently... It was such gem of a little store. Owner-operated, quaint, friendly, BTD knowledgeable with people who genuinely cared about the health and wellness of their customers.They researched the companies/distributors with whom they conducted business and chose to only do business with those of high standards and ethics. They also supported other local owner-operated businesses in the HF market and had some of the best and freshest local organic produce available from an orchard/farm on the Western Slope.
And... being long-time patrons we were treated like family. Many times, they would set aside specialty items for us that were limited in number but they knew we would enjoy. Plus... being BTDer's themselves, they stocked the shelves with little known brand names that were BTD friendly... many wheat-free, corn-free, olive-oil-only items, and almost everything in the store was organic... and ALL of the produce was organic.
But the best part about this little store was that all items were priced between 18 and 23 percent above wholesale. You do realize that in the US, most HFS's have a 50 to 100 percent mark-up. So what a treasure this store has been to us and our growing boys who consume enormous amounts of food, as they most definitely will both be well over 6 feet tall. It helps to keep our grocery bill from being totally outlandish. Even with the low mark-up, those of you who have been purchasing organic, whole foods know how expensive good food can be.
So, every week now we notice the changes... the shift away from a more whole food selection to the standard fare of pre-packaged convenience food marketed for a "health" conscious consumer and poor produce selection and quality. I have been making more and more trips up to Whole Foods Market, and believe me, that is a painful choice for me to reconcile. But don't get me started on Whole Foods... that is a topic for another blog.
All of us regulars at the store keep wondering... when will the prices increase? We have been assured that they will stay the same... for now. I can't help but wonder how long "now" will last.