Pop tarts go against everything I believe in….

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Yet – I did put them on the kids breakfast menu.¬† ūüôā¬† Call it OCD, crazy, exhausting or survival mode…If I didn’t have these menus for boys – our mornings would not go as smooth…guaranteed.

I am not kidding when I say Рwe used one menu last year during the school year and they religiously ate what was posted on that day every day for the entire school year.  This year they said they wanted a little more variety Рhence the two weekly menus.

weekly menu planner #1

weekly menu planner #2

(just click on the links above)

They would come down stairs Рlook at the menu Р(until they memorized it) and get out what they needed for breakfast.  I WAS SHOCKED Рthey actually followed it without question.

It took away the:¬† “What can I have for breakfast?¬† MOM! What’s for breakfast? – I don’t want that!”…I did not hear that once…a slightly more peaceful morning is all I am trying to accomplish.

For the eggs on the menu, we use the egg white – egg beaters and turkey sausage – I made a big ‘ol batch of them – put 2.5 ish¬†servings (Halle is .5)¬†in quart freezer bags – then just take them out as needed…We use whole wheat tortillas for the breakfast pizza or wraps.

I threw pop tarts in there on every other Friday – it is not the end of the world in my opinion and they get so excited.¬† They also don’t beg for them every morning because they know they are going to get one every other Friday…

As for the dinner – I did not follow it nearly as well as the boys committed to the breakfast list.¬† I am really trying this year…Any dinner suggestions I would gladly take if you have some! PLEASE!

Also the snack list is a new addition.¬† I am trying to prevent the¬†constant evening banter of – “What can I have for a snack?”¬† They can choose from the list if we have it in the house.

http://issasarza.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/weekly-planner.jpg¬†(Provided by issasarza.com¬†– print your own blank one if you don’t like the Bringle’s taste in food ūüôā )

So my mini gift to you if you can use this in any capacity and it provides just a hint of peace in your mornings.

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If you were diagnosed today…

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If you were diagnosed today Рwhat would you change tomorrow?  I recently had this conversation with some close friends and it really makes you think.

The funny thing is – in the midst of this conversation – I did not think of myself as already being in that category.¬† I thought of friends that have been diagnosed with cancer, heart disease¬†or debilitating accidents.¬† They have changed their path because of their diagnosis.¬† Some have bought that retirement place they’ve been dreaming of, some have made life altering decisions to quit their job.¬† Some have strengthened or changed their faith. ¬†All have changed their outlook on their life.

They view it differently than the day before.

Although Diabetes is manageable – not curable – I have made life altering changes now that I sit back and reflect on the last 3 years…

I have completely changed the way I eat – and think of food.

I moved exercise up the priority chain.

I have learned not to ignore the elephant in the room so to speak.  Depending on the person Рmany want to share their story or just be listened to.  This is sometimes very hard depending on how well you know them but they deserve to be listened to if they want to share their story.

And probably the most noticeable change is РI have tried to slow down and enjoy life Рnot be in a rush or try to conquer all.  Also labeled as: The year of Jerrie.

At first, with that label my friends coined, that might sound like I am not focused on the right stuff Рbut this simply is the year I have decided to slow down Рand yes take some time for myself.

As all Moms/ parents do Рthey provide themselves with an overwhelming, self-induced, exorbitant amount of guilt any time they take time away from the family. I now know, if I do take a trip to see a friend or travel for work Рthey are better than ok and they do just fine.  I miss them like crazy but Рthey are completely fine and I know longer have the extra baggage of self-induced guilt.

I no longer freak out when someone comes to the door and my living room looks similar to a tornado aftermath.

I take time to hop on the treadmill or go for a walk…they either play downstairs by me or go with me on a walk sometimes – but sometimes I go by myself and have some down time.

Most of all – I love spending time as a family or with our extended family – no longer running the list of “things to do” in the back of my head.¬†We decided to go for it and take the trip to the beach we wanted to¬†do so badly.¬†¬†We just enjoy.

After the conversation with my friends Рthere is so much more I would like to do differently and I will.  It is very powerful when you are thrown into the challenge of  putting life into perspective.

I will learn from my friends and people I know¬†– act on my hearts instincts and go for it…

Life is always too short and I feel blessed to have mine filled with rambunctious kids, a sweet husband that puts up with me and my never-ending ideas,  family and friends that are beyond priceless.

If you were diagnosed today…what would you do differently tomorrow?

Behind closed doors…

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Although I choose to¬†document or share my story – I have come to learn EVERYONE has theirs.¬† Whether it is¬†a disease, depression, anxiety, family feuds, our¬†losses, decisions thrown at us, our children’s abilities or disabilities – I have come to¬†appreciate everyone has their story.

Imagine walking past a stranger or even a very good friend Рyou may have NO idea what their story is Рdepending how closed their door is to their story.

I believe God has given us our story and our challenge is –¬†what we do with it.

Our challenge to pass on the goodness in every situation.  That is very hard to swallow some days.

Some days I think God must feel like He is taking it easy on me when I read others stories or the things I see my friends go through.

I sat down to read the Sunday paper today and could barely get through this article because my eyes kept filling up with tears…so many things stood out.

How young he was, what an inspiration he is passing on, what his two girls and wife have been through and how they are surviving each day and how the other team had no idea, just what a blessing that day was by putting a smile on the other teams face.

http://www.desmoinesregister.com/article/20120722/NEWS03/307220065/1001/NEWS?nclick_check=1

I am grateful for this blog Рsimply because so many have shared their story with me because I put mine out there. I have learned so much in a short amount of time.  I view life from a little different perspective these days.

I just wanted to put out there how every day is a learning experience and I know Diabetes is a small little particle in this complex world we live in, but for many reasons I am grateful for diabetes and grateful for today.

Will you still have diabetes when you go to Heaven?

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Jacob is 9.¬† Luke is 7. They come up with the funniest, sweetest and sometimes¬†craziest questions or comments now and then…

Halle on the other hand is 2 and thinks my pump is a phone and tries to rip it off my pants.¬† Saying “Mommy – helloooo!!!”

Here are a few of the things that have made me smile:

Thanks goodness I don’t have diabetes…I love getting donuts with Grandpa after school – too much.

Why can’t you eat ice cream like you used to?

Will I get Diabetes if you cough on me?

I don’t think you should eat that cake Mom – it’s not good for you. (as they are shoving it in their sweet little mouths as fast as they can. ūüôā¬† )

I think Diabetes has made you healthier Mom Рyou eat healthy stuff and exercise more now that you have Diabetes. (except for that cake I just devoured.)

When will you stop doing shots?

Do you still have to prick your finger all the time? – It can’t be good for you taking all that blood out?

Geez!¬† – that’s gotta hurt!

uummm…do you think that is a good choice? ( as I am looking in their candy jar for a sweet something.)

Mom- your tube is hanging out…

Luke – Don’t give Mom a bite of that! – It is not healthy for her.

When is your Diabetes going to get better?

My mom¬†used to eat¬†3¬†pieces of pizza – now she only can have 2. ūüôā ( Jacob said to his play date.)

…and the other day my sweet little Luke was laying down for bed – saying his prayers.¬† He always says the same ones including – I pray for you to be¬†healthy and your diabetes to go away. (I have explained before that is always going to be a part of me now. – but maybe his sweet prayers are going to help find a cure one day.)

He looked over at me and paused for a minute.¬† That is when he said – “Mom – Will you still have diabetes¬†when you go to¬†Heaven?”

That brought tears to my eyes as I tried to compose the right answer.¬† What a sweet ,innocent, amazing question…

I take it back…

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High-Heel-Leopard-Sling-Back-Sexy-Shoes-Milano...

High-Heel-Leopard-Sling-Back-Sexy-Shoes-Milanoo.com (Photo credit: AviviJ)

I constantly say I will do whatever it takes to be a healthy person living with diabetes.

I just read an article stating I need to wear sensible shoes to help prevent peripheral neuropathy (nerve damage).

Ugh…At some point I draw the line…. ūüôā

Good news…

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My body doesn’t know it has diabetes!¬† Why¬†is that¬†such good news?¬† If my body¬†knew it had diabetes it¬†would be¬†more likely to¬†gift¬†me with other challenges such as:

Heart Disease

Stroke

Kidney Disease

Eye damage

Nerve Damage

Alzheimer’s

Depression ( speaking of…this list could cause a bit of that.)

Hypertension

Skin Disease

Hearing Loss

Cancer

If you research diabetes, you will find it is linked to increasing my (our) risk of any of the above.  If the disease is not treated it affects your blood vessels which in turn affects everything else. (Very simply put.)

In people with diabetes, sugar (glucose) accumulates in the blood to very high levels. The excess glucose can attach to proteins in the blood vessels and alter their normal structure and function. One effect of this is that the vessels become thicker and less elastic, making it hard for blood to squeeze through.

I take that super exciting list from above and use that as motivation not to let my body in on the little secret that it has diabetes.  The longer I can hold off the better. 

When people talk about others that have diabetes or are pre-diabetic and they don’t try to manage it or change their lifestyle – I don’t judge – because I know it is hard and easier said than done.¬†

What I do know is, in my mind – when “I don’t feel like it”, this list goes through my head and I know it is worth it.

If I change my lifestyle, and manage my diabetes appropriately, my blood is no different from yours.¬† It flows through my body just like a “normal” person and does not cause unnecessary damage.

I read up on diabetes¬†as much as I can – because it is not easy to “see” diabetes and to¬†know what it is doing to me on the inside if I don’t take care of it.¬† I want to learn as much as I can.

I also do a little numbers game to go along with that list of motivation. It goes a little something like this. 

When Halle graduates from high school I will be …55. ( from high school!! Not college….oh geez!)

When Jacob¬†is old enough to be married I will be… 59.¬† (if you are wondering , I think 30ish would be ok. :))

When Luke celebrates his 39th birthday I will be… 71.

When Mike and I retire I want to be the wife that doesn’t let my challenge slow me down…I will be 60.¬† ( I can dream right?)

I want to be here for all of that – I don’t want to miss a thing.¬† I want to be that healthy Mom that is able to keep up with them for a very, very, very long time. –¬†¬† That is why I don’t take this lightly and I don’t mess around.

I don’t want diabetes but I definitely don’t want anything of the above either.¬†¬†If I can help prevent those from challenging me – I will do what ever it takes.

Happy Daaayyy!!

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English: Traditional Devil's Food Birthday Cake

English: Traditional Devil’s Food Birthday Cake (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I woke up to two (actually three)¬†cute boys delivering me breakfast in bed, walked downstairs to find new golf clubs waiting for me¬†then ran back up stairs to get Halle out of bed (at 7:36AM!) and Daddy taught her to say –

“Happy Birthday Mom!” – Which sounds like Happy DAAAYYY!

I dare you to mess with my day today diabetes – because you can’t take this smile off my face no matter the number.¬† In fact – I might just have cake for dessert tonight. HA!

It feels good to be 30! ūüėČ

Who would have guessed?

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English: idealized curves of human blood gluco...

English: idealized curves of human blood glucose and insulin concentrations during the course of a day containing three meals; in addition, effect of sugar-rich meal is highlighted; (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Diabetes is not just about counting carbs my friends…on a daily basis – everything plays into¬†a diabetes day.

The kicker is, there is not a set reaction.  Each diabetic is different Рand unfortunately can affect each one differently.

Here are a few things that may affect a diabetic’s numbers any given day…

  1. Scented soap – it completely gives you a false reading and usually – way high.
  2. STRESS¬†– uugghh – this one kicks me when I am down….I go low – just ask me how low I went when I got pulled over for speeding.¬† I am still steaming…
  3. Complex versus simple carbs – body breaks them down differently.
  4. Alcohol – depending on how much sugar it has in it – drops my blood sugar typically.
  5. Exercise – naturally lowers blood sugar.
  6. Caffeine Рreleases glucagon and adrenaline in your body releasing your own sugar Рmaking your bs rise.
  7. Medication – some can make you go higher.
  8. Hormones Рyikes!  This one is unfortunate for everyone.
  9. WEATHER¬†– heat not only lowers my bs but heats up insulin¬† – so it doesn’t last as long.
  10. Injection or pump sight¬†–¬†give shots/cannula site¬†in the same place¬†too many times and scarring begins and doesn’t absorb the insulin as well.
  11. Altitude – drops my blood sugar like crazy – and maybe it is also the stress of flying to boot. ūüôā
  12. Sleep – or lack there of –¬†can make¬†the next day a tough one.
  13. Getting sick – don’t feel like eating? –¬†tough you don’t have a choice.
  14. Portion size – if you go to a restaurant two days in a row – order the same thing – the portion size could be way off compared to the day before = adjust insulin to match portion.
  15. FDAРregulations require only 20% accuracy in food labeling.
  16. Laughing & relaxing Рoh so good for  you Рmakes my bs a bit more even keel.

Take that list into account and come up with that magic number of insulin to give and it makes a bit more sense to my why I can be off.  If I am too high, or too low this list starts going through my head on WHY???

At this point I still have some insulin being produced¬†in my body – therefore I am very sensitive to¬†insulin – don’t need much.

I will say it is never boring – that is for sure.

Anything affect you differently?

Just get a Jolly Rancher!

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English: Source: Cropped from original image o...

English: Source: Cropped from original image on Flickr. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I am trying my best to get back on the exercise train and I am officially back on…I do not want to hop off again and here is why….

I went for two weeks without running and knew I needed to get back at it.  I forced myself to go downstairs in the basement and just start walking on my treadmill.  Jacob, Luke and Halle were upstairs playing Рso I knew I had about 20 min. max.

I did purchase new running shoes as a source of motivation and wanted to add a few miles to them.  Did you know really runners actually log their miles?  Running shoes should last about 300-500 miles.  For some reason that makes me laugh Рmine will go out of style before I reach that benchmark.

My goal was to log 2 miles for my new digs and I did just that. (Gotta start somewhere ūüôā¬† ) I didn’t push it – just wanted to get in a habit again.

I sat down to do a few sit ups and – just like that – I thought – this doesn’t feel right….then the black spots start peeking out.

This is what ran through my head…

I barely ran – am I really low?…Hurry upstairs to get milk – but not too fast…I don’t want the kids to¬†worry …what neighbor is home today?

Check my blood sugar and it was a whopping 41…Grabbed some milk and sat down and called my oldest son in.

The conversation went a little something like this.¬† Jacob – I just need a bit of help – (Halle was asking VERY loudly for milk and a snack, Luke was asking for a Jolly Rancher.)¬† Can you please get Hal a snack and tell Luke – no Jolly Rancher.¬† I just need to get my blood sugar back up and I am good to go…

This is the point where I saw Jacob grow up just a bit before my eyes…He said, “Mom – you going to be ok?”¬† I said – “Oh yes!¬† I just need a minute and your help. ”¬† He went to work on getting Halle a snack and with great pleasure, told Luke – “You can’t have a Jolly Rancher!”¬† He checked in every few minutes – “Mom – you doing ok?”

Luke comes in and sits next to¬†me.¬† Can I please have a Jolly Rancher, I haven’t had one all day, I just want one..I promise I will only have one…on and on and on ….Several times I said – “No buddy – not before dinner, no – not now…” FINALLY – I¬† looked at him and said –¬†¬†JUST GET A¬†JOLLY RANCHER!!!!

I had snapped…I am sure just like any other parent regardless of Diabetes or not, I reached my breaking point.¬† I checked my blood sugar again and it¬†wasn’t going up¬†–¬†so I went to get more milk.¬† Jacob ran in and said – Luke – leave Mom alone for a minute – she just needs to finish her milk.¬† Jacob looked out the window and said – Julie’s car is home and there is a car in Christen’s driveway.

Typically Jacob is my “freaker-outer” but he was so calm and so helpful – he made me so proud.¬† I told him just give me a minute and I will be good to go.

It came back up – as usual, but that day I learned a few things.¬† Our bodies crave consistency -I¬†could¬†have ran¬†that two miles two weeks ago and had no issues because¬†my body was¬†used to that routine.¬† ¬†I needed to adjust my pre-work out prep because it had been awhile since I ran.¬†Most importantly – ¬†Jacob is turning into a sweet young man right before our eyes and for Goodness sake – ¬†just let your kid have a jolly rancher on your bad days…it’s not worth the battle.

Life of Numbers…

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US Nutritional Fact Label

US Nutritional Fact Label (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I have always been a numbers person – Thank goodness…because my life now, is consumed with numbers and if you look inside yours – you might find your life is encompassed with numbers too.

Here is a glimpse into my number log:

6.5 –¬†average number of times I prick my finger a day.

1  Рthe number of times I wake up in the middle of the night to check my blood sugar.

80-140 – the number I want my blood sugar to fall between.

2 Р average number of times a day I have potential road rage. (lots of windshield time.)

6.6 – current A1C level ( goal is to be below 7).

32 – lowest my blood sugar has ever been.

385 – highest my blood sugar has ever been.

52 – number of times I hear Halle say “PUPPY!” a day.¬† (might be exaggerating but it feels like it.)

201 Рis my total cholesterol  Рto date (work in progress).

4 – number of carbs in a glass of red wine.

15 – number of carbs I try to stick to for snacks.

40 –¬†average number of carbs I have per meal.

10 – average number of Dr. visits for diabetes per year.

2 Рaverage number of times I use my calorie king app to look up carbs per day.

6 – the number of times I calculate my carbs and insulin.

36 – number of carbs in my stand-by Panera meal.

5.23 Рmy basal rate.

20% – margin of error the FDA allows food manufacturers to be off by when labeling foods.¬† Wish I could be off by 20% when people were really counting on me – and it will still be ok…

3 – average number of times I use the word “Bastard” a day – under my breath of course.

6 – average number of minutes it takes for me to actually take a bite of food after I get it or prepare it.(scrub hands, carb count, finger prick, insulin pump dose)

8 Рnumber of times I laugh out loud Рon a good day.

21 – number of carbs in sandwich thins –¬†a staple in our home.

7 – number of times my friends ask me how many carbs in “this.”

630 – number of test strips I go through in 3 months.

12 – number of carbs in 1 cup of milk.

39 – the age I will be in 7 days.

30 – how old I actually feel.

1,305 – number of days since I have been diagnosed with my Friend, Diabetes. ( I feel like we should name him/her/it.) – Any suggestions?

1 – number of times I wish I didn’t have to think about numbers…seriously – this list could go on for EVER.

1 Рnumber of times I close my eyes and thank God each day for all the blessings in my life ( I wanted to change that number and I will.  I just wanted to be honest.)

1,000 – times a day I think about numbers and tell myself I am a lucky person to be able to control my numbers that dictate my life.

What numbers dictate your life?