The right path to a new me

 

Six months ago I was pre diabetic and over 300lbs, my health was declining rapidly after my pregnancy where I ended up with late onset  undiagnosed gestational diabetes, and my son ended up in the NICU because of it. At this weight I felt sluggish, tired, and going anywhere and doing anything was a lot of effort and energy which I didn’t have. I found myself depressed on the couch choosing unhealthy foods to numb my pain and frustration after each failed attempt at weight loss, even failing at counting calories and losing weight the “right” way (or so I thought).
During this past summer my husband and myself went to a work summer party, and the next day I saw a picture of myself. I was embarrassed, and I knew I would be when the picture was taken, I have grown used to the embarrassment I feel when it comes to pictures and my weight. I didn’t like how I looked and it dawned on me that I was the largest person there, and although I don’t believe in comparing myself to others, I couldn’t help it.

After seeing the picture and hating how much weight I’ve gained since being diagnosed with PCOS years prior, I decided I didn’t want to be the fattest person at the party, I didn’t want to be the one who stood out because of my weight, I was doing something about it. The problem was that I knew how that always goes, I try for two weeks and then give up. I had to do something different, I had to do something that worked because I was on the verge of giving up on myself and I knew I couldn’t do that with my beautiful son who needs his mom and my loving husband who loves me for who I am. I couldn’t let my health continue to worsen, it wasn’t an option.

The next few days I researched a lot of diet plans and eating plans, I tried to find one that would work for me and it was hard to narrow it down. As everyone is aware, there are so many fad diets, diet pills, and supplements, etcetera to help you lose weight, but I wanted something that I didn’t have to sign up for and buy special food for, I wanted something that would work without a lot of extra cost. Thats when I stumbled upon the Ketogenic diet.

I’d like to first point out that with the Ketogenic diet there is a lot of misinformation out there on it and people are quite nervous when it comes to cutting carbs and what it means. In fact I had my nurse practitioner tell me that people can get kidney failure from it (this is not true at all, not one study has shown this to be a fact or a side effect).

With the ketogenic diet, you stay under 50 grams of carbs a day (a lot stay under 20 grams of carbs) and you eat higher fats. Your protein stays the same as it usually is, but you are cutting out all breads and pastas and sugars. It sounds hard, and starting it was. I had sugar withdrawals and felt horrible for four days while my body switched from burning sugar to burning fat, and its a tough adjustment. Once I got through those four days though, I felt like a whole new person. There best part? I am down 75 pounds so far, I don’t carve food, and there are so many recipes so you can eat all of your favourite foods and you don’t feel deprived!

The ketogenic diet keeps your blood sugars from spiking, and the fat you eat is healthy and makes you feel full. Many people who are  typeII diabetic follow this way of eating and many have reversed their diabetes! My fertility doctor took me off my Metformin, after only a few months on it, this was a huge non scale victory for me. I have energy, I’m no longer always hot and exercise isn’t as daunting (although I still dislike it). Playing with my son is easier, walking around with him at Halloween was enjoyable, and my husband and myself spend a lot more time together outside, this is something I always found difficult. This way of eating has changed my life, actually it saved my life.

I can now proudly say that I am on the way to a new healthy me, I will always be on this way of eating because my body cannot manage carbs in a healthy way, so this is how I will eat for the rest of my life, and I am okay with it. Clean eating, never feeling deprived, and being healthy, I will never take my health for granted, it truly is priceless.

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Here’s a delicious recipe, one of many out there for keto:

Keto Crepes

INGREDIENTS
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 8 large egg whites
  • 2 tbs coconut flour
  • 1 tbs psyllium husk or ground chia seeds
  • 90ml / 3 fl oz coconut milk, cream or almond milk
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp cream of tartar
  • 2 tbs ghee or coconut oil
  • 2 tsp garlic powder (omit if making a sweet keto crepe and add sweetener to taste instead)
  • salt to taste

Directions:

  1. Separate the egg whites and from the egg yolks. You will only need 2 egg yolks and 8 egg whites, as the crepes hold better together when more egg whites are used. Reserve the remaining egg yolks for another recipe.
  2. Place the whole eggs and egg whites, coconut flour, psyllium husk or chia seeds, coconut milk, baking soda and cream of tartar in a bowl and mix well.
  3. Add the garlic powder (or sweetener if making sweet keto crepes) and whisk well.
  4. Allow the batter to sit for 5-10 minutes so the coconut flour and psyllium have time to swell and absorb the moisture. Whisk again.
  5. Heat a nonstick pan evenly with the ghee or coconut oil. Move the pan while pouring in the batter to ensure the batter covers the bottom of the pan in a thin layer. The batter should be runny so it will spread easily. If it is too thick, you may add 1 tablespoon of water to the mixture.
  6. Make the crepes one by one, greasing the pan in between to ensure the keto crepes don’t stick.
  7. Depending on the size, you can make 2 large or 4 medium crepes per serving.

This recipe can be found at: http://www.ditchthecarbs.com/2016/01/25/keto-crepes/ along with other delicious recipes.

 

 

 

~Alberta Oil~ The struggle~

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People are laughing at Albertans while they start to struggle with the plunge of oil prices. The hippies think that wind power or solar power are the way to go (despite the proof that they are far worse for the environment in the long run) and don’t give out the projected power that is promised (ask Ontario), it is crazy to see the smiles on peoples faces when they hear how bad it is for some, and how they are happy to see people struggle.

If you are one of those people who are laughing at this misfortune of others, and are happy to see our oil sands come to a significant slow down and projects canceled or shelved then please let me point out that this isn’t just affecting those “rich” oilfield workers. This will be felt across Canada, so put your smile away. People are losing their homes, their families, their livelihoods and this is no reason to smile or gloat.

With suicide rates climbing, the loony plunging and grocery prices going up, its enough to stress out the calmest of person, but add that on to broken families for some, those who couldn’t handle the long distance, and little time they get, it is all the cost of working in this industry. Its no wonder many suffer physiologically and emotionally.

With that said, please note that oilfield workers and families that can make it are strong. Us wives have lived with our husbands away from home for long stretches, we have been through dry spells (although much smaller then what is coming), but if we can make it through those then we can make it through this. And us oilfield families don’t hold it against the ignorant people who are laughing behind our backs, and excited to see our homes or vehicles repo’d because they think we don’t deserve them. Oilfield workers work long hours, miss time with their families to provide for them, work dangerous jobs. They drive dangerous highways to get there,  work in extreme temperatures, and all the while missing their loved ones. They are often educated, and go to school to get the proper training, and do dirty jobs that many would turn their noses up to, they are strong and work hard for what they have.

Instead of focusing on the negative we will hold tight, we will support one another, we will get other jobs (even if its a lower paying job like Tim Hortons) and most importantly we will have each others backs, because in the end we are all in this battle together.

So while you enjoy your temporary chuckle at our expense, we will enjoy the family and friends we have in and out of the industry. We don’t need your sympathy, and some are too miserable to be able to muster any up. We have each other and that is what counts.

In the mean time, I will pray for Oilfield workers across the world.

Book Review: Yours truly, 2095

Yours Truly, 2095

By Brian Paone

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About the Book:  Jeff Blue-the victim of a time-travel conspiracy-wakes up trapped in the year 2095. The only familiar face is J0; a robotic copy of the wife he left behind in 1981. But can she be trusted? J0 could be the only key to unlock Jeff’s journey home, but it will require her to do something against her programming-something human. During Jeff’s perilous journey through the future, he will have to discover the truth about J0’s origins, and solve the mystery behind how he wound up in 2095, in order to uncover the reality of his own destiny. Armed with a one-way ticket to the moon, Jeff must race against the clock to seize what might be his last chance to return home to his time. A time without hover cars, Justice Computers, or TeleSkins-a time over one hundred years ago.

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My Review: Yours Truly, 2095 is brilliantly written. Brian Paone was able to bring me into the future with his character Jeff as if it was a natural transition. As someone who has a hard time with time travel ideas/concepts/ books/movies etc, I was surprised at how easy Brian was able to bring me into 2095 without difficulty.

The romance between J0 and Jeff was conflicting and almost confusing at first, I didn’t know if I could trust her, I wanted to pull away and not like her, but as the story went on I had mixed feelings about Jeff going back to 1981 because of J0. Brian was able to make J0 real, he was able to make her very human like but keep her robot qualities too.

The trip to the moon was so well written that it kept you into the book without pausing to question the likelihood or possibility, it just pulled you in deeper.

My only problem with this novel is the very ended. Brian, how could you leave me hanging like that? This is a very well written novel, I recommend it to anyone who is looking for a little adventure mixed with some romance and it will leave you wanting more.

 

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About the Author: Brian Paone was born and raised in the Salem, Massachusetts area. An award winning author, his love of writing began through the medium of short stories at the young age of twelve. After almost 20 years of consistently writing short stories for only his friends and family to read, Brian’s first full-length novel was published in 2007, and he has published two more since then. Brian is married to an Officer in the US Navy, and they have 3 children. Brian is a Police Officer for the St. Mary’s GA Police Department and has been working in Law Enforcement since 2002. He is also a self-proclaimed roller coaster junkie, and his favorite color is burnt-orange.

http://www.brianpaone.com

 

How I Build My Characters

 

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Building Characters is a lot of work. You are essentiality creating a small portfolio for a human that you made up and that you have to make believable. It takes a lot of time, thought and planning.

I decided to share the very start of how I build characters, there is a lot more to it then this, but this is a good start and will give you the bare bones of a new character. (Just click on the link)

 

Once you have this complete, then you need to think about who they are inside and out, as if they are your best friend, you need to know their life story to make them real for you and your reader. I find that as I fill out this Character building sheet I start to get an idea of who they are, but once I’m done with it I then put myself into the story that they will be in and have an imaginary conversation with them (I know, it sounds CRAZY but it works).

Hopefully this Character Building sheet helps anyone who is stuck.

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The day my world changed -PKU (Phenylketonuria)

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Sitting in the NICU with my husband and son for what felt like the millionth day due to late onset undiagnosed gestational diabetes, (in reality we had been there maybe a few days), we prepared ourselves. Our son needed an echo, and I wasn’t concerned about the echo test or results, he had a slight heart murmur and I knew they were common. What had me shaken up was the day prior I was told his newborn screening test came back positive for PKU ( phenylketonuria).

I had never heard of PKU and my parents who lived across the country were on the phone with me and freaking out themselves which made matters worse for me despite their well intentions. It had to be a false positive, no way my perfect son had PKU. I read a bit about it, and I convinced myself there was no way he had it, I even told a few of my friends it couldn’t be possible. But still, in the little fridge in his NICU room, sat a little container of a special formula that was rushed over incase, and he would be put on instantly if his test came back positive.

The nurse came in to grab my son and prepare him for the ambulance ride. Despite us having a vehicle and the carseat installed and everything ready to go, they had to take an ambulance. Fine. We bucked him in, his chubby little cheeks so cute, and loaded him on the stretcher in the car seat. As we were about to leave the room the nurse said “oh and the geneticist wants to see you guys too, but we don’t have the second results back from the PKU test, they just want to talk to you incase it comes back positive, your appointment is at 2pm.”

The echo went off without a hitch and his murmur was small and not concerning so we were informed we would have a follow up in a few months just to monitor it and he was just fine. Happy with that news we continued on our way to the genetics building, ready to get the news it was a negative test.

The hallway was long, it was full of pictures from doctors in the past who graduated at the university hospital, I think they went as far back as 1929. The walk seemed long and daunting, the nurse was pushing my baby, I resented her for it, it felt like he was held hostage and I had no control or say over him, like I gave birth and now I’m convincing them to let me have my baby, I felt like I was at a long audition since he was born, proving I will be a good mom.

We pushed the black door open at the end of the hallway and found a really short wing with doors on each side leading to the outdoors. I wanted to take my baby and run. I wanted to just get out of there and take him home. The walls all around were grey cement, it was eerie and depressing, or maybe that was just my mood. As someone pushed the elevator button on the right, I heard the ding as it opened its doors. Turning to face it and trying to avoid focusing on the grey concrete wall, I willingly got in the elevator, I wanted to escape that place.

As we finally reached the 8th floor the doors opened. Bright light filled the hallway, the mood around me lifted and it wasn’t such a scary place. The nurse went up to the receptionist and told her we were there, being in the mood I was I wanted to tell her that this was MY baby, MY appointment and she needed to just sit down and let me be the mom. I felt that none of this was her business and that she was taking my place. Of course she wasn’t taking my place or doing anything wrong, but when you are going through a very emotional time, and with hormones going crazy after birth you might not be the most rational. I wanted her to go away, I didn’t how care how petty I was, I had enough of everyone but my husband and son.

We got into the office, it was so warm, or maybe it was my hormones, I honestly cannot remember. The nurse held my child across from me and my husband, He was so beautiful and I wanted to tell them all that this was a waste of our time and leave. If the second test wasn’t positive which I was sure it wasn’t, then why are we here? I was going to politely tell them we did not need to be there, and then be on our way.

The door opened, and in came four or five, heck maybe ten people, I cannot remember, but it infuriated me. We crammed into this tiny room and I was so mad that they all came here to bombard me with what is only a possible situation. The doctor was very soft spoken and started to introduce everyone, I was so overwhelmed that I couldn’t seem to follow along, so I just nodded.

She then was about to start and asked if I was doing okay. “Not really” I replied truthfully, “I don’t understand why we are here if we don’t even know if my son has PKU” I said politely but most likely with some bitterness to my tone. I was ready to say thanks but no thanks and leave. But then my life changed.

“We have the test result and Brantley has PKU”.

I wanted to die. I wanted to run. I wanted to cry. I wanted to scream. I wanted to take my boy and run. I wanted to hide. I wanted everyone to go away and give me a minute. MY son could not have PKU, I wanted another retest. As I sat silently I didn’t hear anything she said for the next five min while they weighed, measured and inspected my child like he was a foreign object being studied.

The doctor started talking to us and explaining what PKU is and how he cannot digest the phenylalanine (an enzyme in protein) and too much phenylalanine in his system for a certain period of time can lead to seizures, and brain damage in infants/children. He would never be able to eat steak (or any meat), dairy (cheese, milk ect), breads bought at regular stores, eggs, ect. How was I going to do this???

I wanted to cry, but I was too full of questions. I wanted to know everything. How did this happen to my baby? Did I do something wrong when I was pregnant? I was so scared. The nurse then pulled out a bottle on enfamil A+ and opened it. I was watching her and thought to myself that there is NO way she is about to give my baby that POISON. We had just talked about how he couldn’t have that right now until the phenylalanine levels in his blood came down and she’s sitting there about to give my baby that?

I cut the geneticist off and asked if he should be having the enfamil A+ and right away a resounding “NO” came from everyone in the room, even my husband who had been sitting quietly grasping my hand tightly the whole time practically yelled it. The bottle was quickly thrown away and a new one was handed to the nurse this one contained his special PKU formula.

As she started to feed my baby, the doctor finished up and shook our hands and left. The dieticians moved up to where the doctor was sitting and introduced themselves, before they started talking the nurse looked at me, and offered me the opportunity to feed my child. I wanted nothing to do with him at that moment. I said no and I couldn’t. I was hardly holding it together and as I looked at him I loved him more then anyone in the world, but I couldn’t hold him, or focus on him, it hurt too much. I think the nurse knew I was hurting though, and what I needed was my baby. I just wasn’t ready.

The dieticians introduced themselves and we talked about his diet. It was a lot to take in and most of it was a blur, I was processing everything around me, I was angry at the world, I was mad we were in the NICU when I felt my baby was okay enough to leave, I was mad he had PKU, I was mad he had to take an ambulance ride instead of going with us, as if to say we aren’t responsible enough. I was mad at the doctor for telling me he had PKU, and I was mad at that sweet nurse who was so gentle and kind, and did her best to do what she could to help me and my husband and child through what little role she had in our lives for this short time.

The next few months were full of stress of my child not eating enough (according to the dieticians), and me being paranoid they would make me bring him back if he didn’t weigh enough at his weekly weigh ins to put a tube down his nose to feed him again. I would get scared and worried if he ate just a little, or if his levels were off just a bit. I pumped my breast milk so the little bit he could have he got, and I froze the rest. All the while worrying that I wasn’t cut out for PKU and what if I failed.

My son is now 8 months old, going on 9 months old in a few days. He is a healthy happy boy. I am a relaxed mom, I have learned that PKU isn’t as scary as it seems. I answer people’s questions regarding it when his diet comes up, and as long as they are respectful I will engage in conversation about PKU (you would be surprised how disrespectful some people can be).

My son is still the perfect little boy that I gave birth to. He is intelligent, inquisitive, active, funny, and most importantly healthy. He follows a strict diet, the most strict medical diet there is, but he is doing okay, and we all are okay. I look back and I still have hurt and anger, writing this made me cry. It feels like yesterday I got the news and my world changed. But the reality is that my world changed when he was born, not when he got diagnosed with PKU, it changed when I became a mom to my beautiful little boy, he’s my world.

Now when I see new mom’s post on Facebook about having a new baby and just finding out their perfect little baby has PKU and the panic in their words, I want to just reach out and hug them and cry with them. It is devastating when you first find out. But if I could tell parents who just received their child’s PKU diagnosis just one thing, I’d tell them that it’s going to be okay, truly and honestly. It will be okay, your child will be okay, you will make it through this, your baby is perfect and beautiful, he or she is still the baby you gave birth to and will grow up just fine on their diet. You got this!

Lots of love to all the PKU families out there and those who help support them. Stay PKU strong

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Sex scene

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(picture from www.dailymail.co.uk)
Feeling empowered but yet trapped by the want of his body, she slid her hand down his back. His skin felt smooth and soft but underneath hid his hard muscular frame, one of power and strength. Alic arched his hips slightly, pressing his throbbing arousal between her legs, she felt his heat, and his eagerness for entrance. His lips, warm on her neck as he tasted her sweetness while trailing kisses towards her ear, she squirmed and push him away, but wanted him closer. His tongue flicked at her earlobe and she moaned softly, encouraging him.
Mary’s hands wandered to his arousal and wrapped her delicate fingers around it. He sucked in a breath, she knew he was trying to remain in control, fighting back the urge to take her. Her breasts firm and soft, he ran his tongue over their peak and suckled them one by one. Mary, feeling powerless grabbed the bed sheet and moaned as he devoured her.
Feeling him slow down, Mary grabbed his hair and pulled him up to face her. Staring into his dark eyes briefly she could see his burning desire. Her fingers tangled in his thick hair, she pulled him to her and tasted his soft sweet lips with her tongue, he tasted sweeter then she imagined, I will explore more of that later she decided. He let out a deep groan as he nibbled her bottom lip, she needed him, to feel him and have him completely. Catching Mary by surprise he plunged his tongue in-between her lips,  kissing her deeply. She felt the passion and heat. In a haze Mary was consumed by his scent and taste, the feel of his body on top of her, the passion between them. Instinctively she lifted her hips towards him. He responded eagerly with his hands, feeling her wet heat, he gently massaged the bud between her legs. Mary gasped, breaking their kiss. Looking for more, needing to feel consumed, and to be complete by him, she reached down and wrapped her fingers around his sheath.
Alic threw back his head and let out a deep loud groan, she knew the feel of her hand around his cock was more then he could take. Thrusting along with her gentle strokes, he passionately tasted her lips again, kissing her deeply and fully, Mary savoured his touch, she wants this moment to last.
 Alic grabbed her hands and pinned them above her head. He began trailing kisses down her body, her heart swelled with each one. She squirmed and cried out with anticipation and nervousness, having lost all control was both exhilarating and frustrating. As he reached her core, he teased her, kissing everywhere but her burning desire.”Alic” she panted, her voice just a whisper as it defied her in the moment of passion. She thrust at him, he dodged and kissed her inner thigh, as he released her hands. His breath was warm against her crevice, she reached down to his head and tried to direct him to her centre, but he enjoyed teasing her, she knew she was at his mercy.
Frustrated she sighed and gave up fighting, this was exactly what Alic wanted. Just as she lowered her hips with a sigh he lapped at her velvet slit, burying his face and fingers. She cried out loudly as she bucked her hips. His warm, tongue lapping against her bud brought her close to explosion, but just before she reached sweet release he stopped and looked up at her.
She felt wild, her hair was a tangled mess, her face flush with colour and her lips were plum and tingly. She knew he could see her frustration, and she saw the madness in his eyes, his hunger for her no longer able to be subsided so easily. His cock at the ready, Mary prayed silently that Alic was finally  going to give her his desire. Unable to resist him and his noticeable eagerness between his thighs, she wrapped her legs around him and pulled him in closer. Trapped in her embrace he drove his cock deep into her, making her cry out as she met his thrust with her own, trying for the release she so desperately needed.
He thrust deep and hard, she felt the warmth of his shaft as he filled her. She started to quiver beneath him, unable to control herself and never having felt this before. Mary couldn’t hold back any longer, she needed this. The feeling of her starting to lose control drove him deeper into her, the need for him to consume her  and give her what she silently demanded propelled him, she felt exhilarated and out of control, she bucked wildly in rhythm with him. Thrusting deep into her wetness she felt him  gently massage her bud as she tried to muffle her cries. Her voice hoarse and requiring more from him, she had never been so out of control, never been so connected. She needed him to make her his, and to give her the release she craved.  In response he buried his cock over and over, filling her warm sheath, “oh Alic” she repeated. Embarrassed at her wonton behaviour, this surely is not how a lady acts, but unable to stop or control herself.
Mary started to shake wildly under him, her release was coming. He picked up his speed, he seemed to know just what to do.  Filling her over and over with his thick cock Mary moaned and cried out loudly without any control or thought of what was happening. Her breath caught as she reached her glory. Unable to hold out any longer himself,  he arched himself deep into her as he started to throb with a loud groan. Bucking hard and fast he reached his release, spilling his seed deep in her with every orgasmic thrust Mary felt his cock throb.  Collapsing on her out of breath he planted a gentle kiss on her forehead as he shutter one last time, Mary laid embraced in his arms, feeling his heart thud against her bare breast as he caught his breath. Now they were one.

*Im editing this scene now, so any and all feedback is welcome!*

Finding your writing voice

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Finding your writing voice can take a bit of trial and error. It has personally taken me years to learn how to not come across as monotone and dull. I still haven’t perfected it by any means, but I have come a long way (with a lot further to go). So what is your writing voice and why should we care about it?

Your writing voice is your writing style and how you come across to your readers/followers. It sets you apart and makes you sound different from everyone. Each person talks different, acts different, and comes across to people different, this is one of the things that sets us apart from each other. My blog will be different from someone else’s blog, we have unique voices (and I am still working on mine). People will often follow your blog based on the content and how it is written. Your voice will be one of the major components of your writing that will set you apart and define you, so take your time and investigate your writing voice.

So how do you find your writing voice? In my experience the best way to find your voice is to free write a few articles, short stories, blogs ect and read what you have written. Did you like it? Did it come off how you wanted it to? Did you enjoy what you wrote and how it sounded? If not then you need to go back and read what you have written, what would you change? What you make it better? This may take several tries, and that is okay, ask your friends what they think of what you have written, get feed back if you are stuck, make sure you are enjoying what you are writing and make sure you are writing something that you would enjoy reading.

Once you think you have found your voice it is good to practice it. Write short stories from writing prompts, try a journal, a paper, anything, just keep writing. Everything you write will be a lesson you learn. It will help hone in your skill and make you better at it.

Make sure you write from passion, take some risks and see where they take you, you might surprise yourself, but if nothing more you will learn from it and become a better writer.