Technical(ly I’m causing) Issues

What up, camper friends?

So far I think I have painted this camper life with a bit of a glamorous brush.  Perhaps that is because I have enjoyed this shift in my life.  This life that constantly challenges me to adapt to change on a weekly basis.  This life that requires me to be reliant on Eric and Sue for support.  (Truly, I couldn’t have asked for better companions.)  The truth of it is, our camper has had some dings the past couple of months.  Luckily, we have been able to fix most of the issues, but it hasn’t always been easy.

I am 5 foot nothing.  I am a short, petite person.  Due to this height restriction, I use brute force nearly all of the time.  (That’s how I got Eric, ayo!)  The cupboard door won’t open, let me yank on it.  The electrical cord won’t go back into its nook easily? Let me just shove it back in there.  The toilet is frozen shut?  Here, I can jump on that to open it.  Wrong.  Wrong. Wrong.  We are certainly paying the price for my thoughtless yanks and shoves.  (Hey, I was on steroids for a while… I can’t help that I have bulked up. #armdayeveryday)

For a couple of the things that have broken it has been as easy as buying wood glue and a gasket cover.  For a few of the other things, it has been easy to obtain the item, but the price of which left our pockets a little light.

Besides my attempt to see how much I can break before Eric kicks me out of the camper, the wear and tear of a life on the road can add up.  For one, the camper had a nail in one of its tires.  The wheel bearings need to be repacked. (Whatever that means, I just know it’s been on our to do list).  Our camper is older, the seals on the outside aren’t as tight as they used to be.  If it rains too hard the back part of the toy hauler (where we open and close this draw bridge looking thing) will leak and dampen our carpet and any items near the vicinity.  We need to re-seal it, that takes time and so far we haven’t had a dry location to do this.

We need to install a new faucet, as that leaks too.  This issue has a trickle down effect (pun intended).  The cabinets are getting worn from the water dripping down.  The side wood panel has seen better days due to the continuous water absorption.  We go through towels like crazy and considering we don’t have a washer and dryer on hand, that becomes its own problem.

Yes, our camper is older, it needs some loving in the form of money and repairs.  Right now, though, I like the struggle.  I know one day Eric and I will look back at this camper and laugh and say “How did we do it?”  Not only with how small the camper is for two people and a canine, but also with the dated aspects of it.  I love it for those reasons.  I love putting work into it.  I love making it function and look better.

We hope to make these repairs this summer and potentially remodel it.  Until then I will keep my army of towels near the faucet and do my absolute best to not use my Buffy the Vampire Slayer strength on our camper.  I hope winter hasn’t been too terrible for everyone!  We are dealing with rain in the South (AKA mud…mud everywhere..) but hopefully the days of using our little buddy heater are behind us!  Until next time– keep wandering! <3afk

Focus… Ooo, Shiny things…No Focus!

 

 

Hey Friends,

We are one month or so into 2018 and it is gut check time.  How are your goals coming? Are you eating those veggies you said you would?  Working out every day?  Taking your dog for a walk every morning?  Yeah, me either, but don’t let your “failures” get you down.  You are in control of your life.  I would say if you didn’t do this in the beginning of January, now is the time to put pen to paper and focus (or refocus).

One of my 2018 goals is to be more focused.  (It is a life goal also, shiny things distract me quite easily.)  It is easy to say out loud “I want to exercise more.”  But when time comes to put those words into action, what did you really mean by exercise?  Was it once a week?  Go for a walk in the morning? Do yoga?  My next few suggestions are thanks to a seminar I attended with Eric and his company given by Michael Jefferys.  He is a motivational speaker who provided excellent recommendations to advance focus and goals.  (You can youtube some of his videos, check out his website or subscribe to the seminars he is apart of in the online community.*)

He proposed goals should be concise and have clarity.  Eric and I wrote down our goals. (I made like four lists of goals, health goals, 2018 goals, relationship goals, (don’t murder Eric in his sleep when he snores) and life goals.)  When saying “I want to exercise”, be clear what that means.  “I want to do yoga 3 times a week.”  Not only providing what activity is apart of the goal but also the amount of time each week is needed to complete the goal gives you clarity.  This strategy removes wiggle room for any excuses you may come up with. (Everytime I write you, I really mean me… and the excuse has been that it is too cold to take Sue on a walk, Sue disagrees.)

Michael suggested when you are writing out the goal list to make a couple of copies and put them in different locations to remind yourself of these goals.  It is advertising to yourself, like hey remember you wanted to do this?  “In sight, in mind,” he said.  2018 is the year to get off of auto pilot.  Quit doing what is easy.   Put some work into what you want, and you will HAVE TO see results! (Please note, as I have written this I have been distracted by people watching and my phone… thus the need for focus to be my #1 2018 goal. I am at a Panera Bread, mooching their free wifi and amazing Hibiscus Tea free refills.)

The best advice I took away from the seminar was his number one suggestion: Immediate definitive action, when you get a good idea, or feel the whim of motivation coming on, ACT ON IT.  Especially for me, as a writer, when I have an idea for a post topic or something to write about, I make a mental note.  That mental note almost always drifts from the mental note files into a place I can only imagine is the same location of where all the missing socks go.  Gone forever.  Therefore, this tip is quite useful for me.  I believe it could be for anyone.  When I ran cross country in high school our coach would advise, “Use your hills!”  What he meant was use the easy part of the run to push you forward towards the more difficult part of the run.

Another recommendation from Michael was to visualize like an Olympian.  This really clicked with me.  I am one of those people that would get anxious if I couldn’t visualize an event happening.  Therefore, I already do this in a way, but instead of just picturing what I think would happen, I need to adjust and think of what I want to happen.  (And be positive in the vision, it’s common that I am trying to prepare myself for worst case scenario… it is time to picture the best case scenario!)  Visualize yourself getting on the treadmill after work every day.  Visualize yourself making a healthy meal and enjoying the process as well as the meal.  Use the power of your big brain to help create the future your want and deserve.

I think one road block for people is thinking that other people are more special than them.  Anyone who has ever accomplished the same goal you are working towards was just a human.  They started right where you are.  You could not only end up being just as successful as them, but surpassing them.  All you have to do is try.  (You can do it!)

The seminar I attended really changed my outlook on the goals I have and how to achieve them.  I have written down my goals to make them more real.  I was concise in my list making to ensure the clarity of these goals.  I made several copies and placed them where I would see them every day, in sight in mind!  I act on an idea when it comes to me, rather than attempting to later,  I use my hills.  I visualize the outcome of my goals (in a positive way! No negativity zone here!)  And I realize that everyone was a newbie once, I can be just as successful as those I admire.

Get off of autopilot.  Make 2018 your best year yet.  Don’t forget to be grateful for your opportunities for your improvement.

Oh and keep wandering. <3afk

 

* https://michaeljeffreys.com/

Sue for President

The air was crisp, like freeze your nostrils chill, fresh in true February fashion.  I was dazed by the pine trees that were sprinkled throughout the mountains, offering their free fragrance for the passerby.  The white of the snow throughout the mountains more or less blinded me as it covered anywhere rock didn’t.  That probably explains why I barely heard the kid yelling at me that my dog was not allowed up on the Mount… I’m sure he was talking to someone else… certainly not me.

Sue was a good boy on this adventure.  There WAS a sign that said “No Dogs Past this Point.”  However, there weren’t markings of where the point began, and I mean what constitutes a dog anyways?  I was very respectful of the few people that were up there with me, I stayed a good distance from everyone.  He didn’t pee anywhere, we weren’t bothering anyone… I do feel the need to defend myself for bringing him up there.  That dang kid, “Mind your own business!” is what I wish I would have yelled back. (I thought of this on the drive home, among many more.) I genuinely didn’t put it together until after they had moved on that he was yelling at me.  If it was a nice warm sunny day out, I wouldn’t have brought him.  Plus, I mean look at that photo… what a cutie! (He’s pondering the meaning of life. #seniorpicpose)

I had it in my head that as soon as I saw Mount Rushmore, I’d shrug and be like “Yep, there it is”, turn around and move on with my day.  There is more to it than that.  The pathway (Avenue of Flags) to the view point (Grand View Terrace) is lined with flags of all 50 States, with an engraving of when that State was founded.  So even if you were lugged up the mountain by your family, you can still say “Hey, there’s my state!” Which is exactly what I did.  Fun Fact: Iowa was the 29th State admitted into the Union in 1846.

Past the Avenue of Flags (And Captain Judgement, Miniature version) stood Mount Rushmore in all its dignity and glory.  I took it all in; how much time and work had to be put into this structure.  Years of dealing with weather, faulty tools and government delays as well as the actual effort of sculpting it. I made a mental note to inquire how long the faces will last.  According to John Burgess, a Former US Foreign Service Officer, who answered this question on http://www.quora.com, the faces on the Mount will take 2.4 million years to erode.  How amazing!

After our trip to Rushmore, we lallygagged around, finding a park in the Black Hills area for Sue to do some sniffin’.  I went to Crazy Horse, a monument for the Native American leader, Crazy Horse.  I watched a dated documentary they had set up inside the museum that was quite educational.  I took a lot of photos that will be worth more than any words I could put together for my venture in the National Park.  So please check out my Instagram account thewanderinglily3 for more insight into Sue and I’s experience.

Thanks for reading.  Keep wandering! <3afk

January Hike in the Black Hills

The snow crunched below my hiking boots.  I could hear the rushing of the water from the creek.  Sue ran ahead smelling every rock and stick in sight.  The green of the pine trees was the only color that popped on this grim, but warm January day.   The grass was a hay yellow, hibernating still, though it was 55 degrees out.  The Black Hills provided what they were known for, the black charcoal cut outs of rock and history of the land.  Ice paved most of the paths on the Centennial Trail in the Black Hills National Forest.

My hiking companions and I started out on Flume Trail-head, which is about 14 miles outside of Rapid City, SD.  The Centennial Trail is an 111 mile trail that connects several State and National Parks.  It flows through Bear Butte State Park, the Black Hills National Park and ends at Wind Cave National Park.  Flume Trail appealed to us because it has a 3 mile loop.  We attempted to follow that but soon found our instinctual survival skills were lacking.  A left turn instead of a right turn put us off of our goal of 3 miles and progressed it to a 5 mile hike.  However, it lead us to a peak that looked down on the creek.  We decided getting lost was part of the fun (I discovered my travel buddies get lost on hikes often, remind me to plan the next hike!).

It was a rocky, steep climb, trying to find our way back, but we found joy in the journey.  The rocks that protruded from the hills were black, granite looking peppered with snow throughout.  The best part of hiking with company is the conversation.  When I am out in nature my mind clears itself, the fresh air rejuvenates me, leading the way for random topics.  We talked about important things like hydration and unimportant things like television.  Some of the time we didn’t talk, taking in what the earth had to offer us.

We discussed not knowing if snakes hibernated (okay now we know they do) or if we should be scared of mountain lions (they would have heard us and left us alone…I think).  Then, the dogs ahead of us found something that caught their attention.  I thought it was a dead squirrel or rabbit or something.  They found a deer leg.  A legit partial leg of a deer.  The bone was sticking out of it, there wasn’t any blood near or around it.  Thankfully the dogs didn’t consume it and we didn’t see what/who had done that to the deer.  (Or the rest of the deer…which was the concerning part…hmmm) But just a reminder of the way wildlife truly is. (Insert images of random animal body parts #nature)

It is a blessing to have the opportunity to connect with the atmosphere.  It is almost like my religion.  I feel refocused, like I could tackle anything that came my way.  I have been able to enjoy the beautiful city of Rapid City here in South Dakota.  It has statues of almost all of the Presidents on the street corners in the downtown area.  We stayed in the Hotel Alex Johnson, right in the hub of a myriad of candy shops, bars and restaurants.  We are here of a couple more days, I haven’t made it to Mount Rushmore yet but it is on the list!

If you are ever in the South Dakota area, I not only recommend visiting the downtown area of Rapid City, but also the beautiful National Parks.  This location has so much history to it, even just in the land, that you’d be a fool not to!

Keep wandering! <3afk

**Check out more photos from my hike in the Black Hills National Forest on my instragram: thewanderinglily3

 

Birthday Sushi in a Boat

As a 30 year old woman…

Okay really I just wanted to type that to see how it felt.  I am 30 years old.  Feels weird.  But I am ready to for it.  The direction I am headed in my 30’s is focus.  To live deliberately.  I am going to be more conscious of my diet.  It is crucial I pay attention, now more than ever.  I am still not 100%.  With this chronic illness, when I have a bad day it gets to me mentally.  Am I going to have to go back to the hospital?  But I have to stay positive.  Keep moving, keep going.

Eric spoiled me rotten for my birthday.  (He spoils me rotten every day…buuutt) We met up with his sister and her boyfriend for sushi at Blue Sushi Sake Grill in Lincoln, NE.   We ordered so much sushi it came in a boat!  Like sushi on sushi on sushi.  Plus sashimi and fish roe. I think I ate my weight in sushi.  And that’s all a girl wants on her birthday, or for me it is just always about the food.  ON A BOAT!  He gave me a beautiful hyacinth plant and a metal owl ornament for our campsite.  He continuously surprises me with gifts here and there if he sees something at the home and garden shows.  We both do that, just get things for each other and that matters more to me than a big gift on my birthday.

We are traveling without our camper at the moment. (Feels like without a limb) We are headed to Rapid City, SD.  It is difficult to RV camp when the temps dip below freezing.  We have had some pretty cold nights even in Tennessee, so we decided to hotel/couch surf for this trip.  With that being said, my upcoming on the road challenge is how to not eat out every single day.  Not only for financial reasons, but also Eric is on a diet, I want to focus on my dairy free life.  It is frustrating how eating unhealthy is so easy and inexpensive.   McDonald’s is cheap, hot and simple.  Why can’t there be a healthy food stand at every gas station? Why does the bad food taste so good? Why, oh, why! (First world probs anyone? Anyone?)

Plus, since we are staying in hotels, I need to find a way for us to cook a healthy dinner.  Maybe it will be a TV dinner sort of week.  Eric and I are going to be living like college kids.  Cup O Noodles, hotel coffee and cable TV.  Sue is the only one who has it made in this situation.  He gets to sleep in a hotel bed, continue his food schedule AND site see?  What a doggo life!

I will be posting on instagram a lot this week.  I am going to see Mount Rushmore, and site see around Rapid City.  I hear there is a lot to do even though it is winter.  I also heard they don’t have the best shopping sites, so site seeing might be just the thing! 🙂 Keep Wandering.  <3afk

Hopefully Helpful Hints

HELLO FROM OKLAHOMA! The caps are because it has been the windiest four days of my life and that is just how I talk now.  The RV campsite has a couple oil rigs which set an Oklahomian feel to my two-a-day walks with Sue.  He has gotten quite a bit of out doors time in OKC, despite 30 mile per hour winds, it has been sunny and 60 degrees.  I feel thawed out, just as we are about to head up to South Dakota.  I can feel the medicine kicking in, I am feeling much better.  Thank Goodness!! Oh and as promised, my own ode to steroids.

Roids

Every morning I take you

By mid day, I feel you take me

Shake me

Make me

Crazy.

I am a constant buzz

My head filled with fuzz

And I’m angry just because

Roids.

I tend to make up poems or rhymes a lot about my medications.  I think putting a fun twist and making a “Pill Time” song just really goes to show how much of an affect Blues Clues had on me.  As someone who is about to turn 30 in a few days, I am in the mood to share what little drops of wisdom I might have.  So here are some hopefully helpful hints about saving some mula on the road.

When Eric and I travel for 8-10 hours a day, we rely heavily on coffee and water to get us through. My sister’s fiancee gave Eric a Stanley Thermos for Christmas. That thing has been a life saver.  We will brew a good pot of coffee for the day, rather than talk each other into getting Starbucks to treat ourselves from having to drink gas station coffee all day.  What a reward system huh? (I found Starbuck’s breakfast blend on special for $6.99, that is my excuse and I am sticking to it!)

All of the trips to Starbuck’s or even gas station coffee add up.  Once you spend a dollar, you find it easier to spend more than one.  Might as well.  One of our 2018 goals for traveling is to only purchase gas at gas stations.  No water, no coffee, nothing.  I am trying to keep left over gallon water jugs and am filling them up with tap water.  (Ugh, I know.  Flint Michigan still doesn’t have clean water and it makes me nervous to drink tap water.  But…frugality!)

Eric has a couple yeti coolers that save us when we are boon-docking at a rest stop- our refrigerator doesn’t have power when we aren’t hooked up to a battery.  Eric’s Dad was kind enough to give us an ice maker for Christmas, that alone is going to save us.  We can always have our big yeti cooler cold, full of ice, ready to save food.  Again, rather than purchase ice every time we are at the grocery store.  This yeti cooler has been a pain in my neck.  I have to keep it cold, once it gets warm the ice will melt and I have to start all over.  It’s a fun game that the yeti keeps winning.  But I’ll get it one of these days…

For anyone who is on the road, I hope these things helped if you are trying to cut down on costs.  2018 is going to be the year where I calibrate from the mistakes I’ve made, whether on the road or off.  Keep wandering. <3afk

We have the 1.1 QT Size, Stanley Classic Vacuum Insulated Thermos

https://www.stanley-pmi.com/shop/classic-vacuum-insulated-bottle-11-qt

Yeti Cooler’s – Eric has had these for a while.  They are spendy but for us, worth it. 

https://www.yeti.com/hard-coolers/tundra-65-cooler/YT65.html?dwvar_YT65_color=desert-tan&cgid=hard-coolers#start=1

https://www.yeti.com/soft-coolers/hopper-two-20-cooler/YHOPTWO20.html

Colonoscopies are for Assholes

When I started this blog, my eyes were wide open; I pictured writing about sunsets on the beach and breathtaking hikes with my man and my dog. The last few months I have seen some sunsets and been on some hikes. I see the instagram posts with the pretty girl and the pretty guy and they got a pretty dog too. I want this to be reality. My reality is that I have Ulcerative Colitis. A reality I have been living for 10 years. As we use the new year to reflect and plot our improvement, I am stuck getting back on my feet.

   I have been battling through an Ulcerative Colitis flare up through the end of the year and new year.  I wasn’t as responsible as I needed to be with my chronic illness.  I found myself checked into a hospital in Stockbridge, Georgia, right out of Atlanta.  It was our first show back for the year.  I knew I was in trouble when I couldn’t sleep through the night due to the flare up, however I didn’t think it was four days in the hospital bad… I was wrong.  

I have a difficult time sharing my UC (Ulcerative Colitis) story, because ultimately, it is embarrassing.  It would be one thing if I told you I had Diabetes, everyone has a general idea of what that is.  The explanation of the disease isn’t a depiction of what happens behind closed doors.  Ulcerative Colitis is ulcers in the colon or large and small intestines.  When I eat dairy, the ulcers flare up, secreting mucus and blood, causing fever and stomach cramps.  I go to the bathroom quite often during a flare up, #2 style, and I lose the mucus and blood each time.  I become anemic and very fatigued.   During a flare up the most fun is the never knowing when I will have the urge to use the restroom and then needing to go immediately. (Didn’t I mention how awesome this was?)  

  I have met quite a few people who have Crohn’s Disease, which is similar to Ulcerative Colitis.  The difference is, Crohn’s can affect anything having to do with digestion, the esophagus to rectum.  UC only affects the colon.  (And my social life.)  

  When I was eighteen the last thing I thought about is what I ate.  When the symptoms first manifested, I thought it was food poisoning.  Three months passed before my mom made me visit a doctor.  It took awhile for the doctors to figure it out, but after a colonoscopy I was diagnosed with UC.  That was the last day I had dairy on purpose, and according to everyone who I have told that I have a dairy allergy, that is also the day I died.  “You can’t have cheese? I would die!”  

  And to be fair, a part of me has.  The part of me who eats something without putting some thought into it.  When I stop doing this, I get sick. I question everything now.  There have even been times I was sure it was dairy free, and would still get sick.  (It wasn’t lactose free, it had casein in it).  The part of me who gets to go out to eat wherever I want, share the appetizer or sneak a dessert.  (I know, boohoo, right?)  

  It doesn’t sound like the worst thing ever, and that’s because it isn’t.  Or at least it hasn’t been in a while.  The stomach cramps, a mild feeling, a constant uncomfortable thought of “ugh.”  I  have been fed up at times and think if I just stopped eating, I wouldn’t have anything to make me sick.  I tried that once and my body still found blood and mucus to discharge.  Not eating made those movements even more painful.  A stabbing pain in my colon, the uncomfortable ache on my backside and a general unwell feeling.  After completing the bathroom problem, the fatigue weighs on me.  My shoulders sag, my arms feel heavy and my legs burn as if I ran a marathon.     

   When I am lucky enough to take steroids, my joints will also ache.  I will get hot flashes as well as anger rages.  (Yes, Roid Rage exists for taking steroids… I’m not on the anabolic kind though… shucks.)  I’ll get really fed up with Sue walking close to me out of nowhere.  Or if Eric asks too many questions trying to make things better, I’ll rage.  (I mean he knows better… how dare he be helpful.)  Plus the long term effects of taking steroids plagues me.  My Mom’s Mom took steroids her whole life and it really messed with her mentally and physically.  

  Now I am tired just from writing this little bit.  It depresses me quite a bit.  It’s a circle.  I mean I could have it so much worse, I really could.  So to sit here and become depressed because it hurts when I poop seems so silly.  But I don’t feel well.  I should be thankful I still have all my limbs, I don’t live in a impoverished country or that I have such a great boyfriend/family/ friends who cares about me.  All that falls away when I stress over the next bathroom visit.  It will be painful.  There will be blood.  I will feel exhausted afterwards.  

And yet, I feel like such an asshole for not having it worse. 

Travel starts again this week, a poem for steroids and more life continues on the next post.  Keep Wandering. <3afk

Happy Greetings!

Happy Greetings!! Today marks my first day of absolutely no holiday celebration.  I hope you all as much time to spend with your families as I did mine.  I feel so fortunate that Eric and I were able to travel to see the majority of the people we wanted to.  My family and friends are in Iowa, Eric has friends in Iowa and family in Tennessee and Illinois. For our off time, we certainly kept on the move.  

  Eric’s family took my dairy allergy to heart when preparing Thanksgiving and Christmas meals.  I so appreciate that, considering heavy cream and cheese are staples in any American meal.  I surprisingly made TWO pies this year.  I can’t say I am a baker.  The best cookie I make is a no-bake oatmeal peanut butter cookie.  So.  That should tell you something.  One year my only job was to unroll the cookies onto a baking sheet, put them in the oven and pull them out once the timer dinged.  My lovely Aunt and Uncle choked down some hockey puck looking dessert with a smile and a large glass of milk that year.    I will say that my blueberry pie turned out incrementally better than I thought it would.  I didn’t do that egg yolk glaze thing most people do (I’m lazy) but added extra sugar.  I was satisfied.  I also made a pecan pie, that one was my favorite.  I mean brown sugar, am I right? 

 Eric’s sister made an awesome vegan mac and cheese, she provided the website she used for me. ( http://www.isachandra.com/2013/10/roasted-red-pepper-mac-cheese-video )  Her mac and cheese was packed with flavor.  She even added vegan shredded cheddar cheese on top and baked that on there so it got all metly.  It was the best!  She has a real vegan friend (not one of those accidental vegan people like me) that came over and devoured it, due to it’s deliciousity.  However, our opinion of food might be skewed.  We don’t eat the real stuff, so anything that compares often exceeds our expectations.  

  My Dad kept it classy on Christmas and did a big beef roast.  He is a meat master, well actually he is a certified BBQ sauce judge, well even more actually he is a Firefighter.  So all of that adds up to being excellent in the kitchen.  Everyone had their contributions, my sister made a delish ratatouille, her husband made this cheesey corn casserole (which I heard sucked, cheese, gross).  Eric made his garlic mashed potatoes.  The dogs got their leftovers.  We had a Wii Bowling Tournament, that I lost, some how? My mom took a nap and we all played for her….she got second place.  Eric won the tournament, and the endless game of spoons we played, and the Trivial Pursuit game.  So we welcomed him into the fold, let him feel good about himself.  Next time I think we’ll be meaner to him, make him remember his place.  🙂

  We both got to spend time with our friends.  It felt so good to recharge.  Eric is from Dubuque, Iowa.  I hadn’t ever experience Dubuque, the first city in Iowa, the best thing to happen to America, according to Eric.  We got to bar hop to Paul’s Tavern, which I guess was in a Ryan Reynolds film, once? (Big deal) and Lot One.  We sang karaoke at Exxtreme Pub, Eric is kind of a diva when it comes to his microphone time.  It was quite the time, those Irish bastards can drink.  The next day he gave me a tour of historical aspects of this Mississippi River town.  The truest thing I saw was the genuine pride he had in the place he grew up, we stood out on the tip of Julien Dubuque’s monument, he put his arm around me, and life felt good.  Felt right.  

  Ultimately, I hope you had moments like this on your Holiday.  Between my family, his, my friends and his friends, time can slip away but if you can hold onto it just for a moment, you’ll get to keep it forever. 

After this post, I am going to dive into some of the medical issues I have been having.  I have a difficult time writing about it, because it is so personal.  However, throughout all of the holidays I was battling some of my Ulcerative Colitis sickness.  I tried ignoring it, and ended up in the hospital for four days.  I hope you have an open heart when you read my next few posts.  Until then, Keep Wandering! <3afk

 

Scrumdiddilyumptious

Hey there!

Holy busy life, Batman! When we started this journey, I pictured myself hanging in the hammock, reading a book, seeing all the free/inexpensive sites I could and write, write, write!  The reality is, that it is very time consuming to be on the road! I have been going to the home shows with Eric the past few weeks.  Eric is a great teacher/ trainer, I have learned a lot from him about sales.  This week I had my first bed sale!  It feels amazing to finally have one under my belt!  For the month of October we participated in Sobertober- an alcohol free month.  It was challenging but throughout the struggle I knew I was doing something I NEEDED.  We spent the summer drinking with friends every night, that behavior stayed with us through the start of our fall.

The month of October we also had a strict diet.  We did a low carb, low sugar, dairy-free(mainly me) and high protein diet.  I flub on the carbs a little bit, Eric enjoys his dairy.  We eat a lot of chicken breasts and thighs.  We eat steak once a week.  We enjoy pork, being from Iowa, when I am in an area that will have good pork, I splurge.  We have been obsessed with this seasoning, Everglades Seasoning, an all purpose spice.  We use it on pretty much everything since we found it in the South.  We ran out of the sauce we were obsessed with and can’t find it anywhere.  It is Frank’s RedHot Sweet Ginger Rajili hot sauce.  I am a wimp when it comes to spice but this was more just a heat.  It was delicious and I search for it every time we go to the store.  I am trying to introduce fish into my diet more, Eric like’s seafood but he doesn’t like fish.  I am a big fan of salmon, so on nights when we would typically do steak, I am going to do fish instead.  The thing I try to remember is that this diet change is a process, I am going to treat myself every now and again, everything in moderation.  However, editing out the carbs has opened up my world to just one side with your meal: veggies.

The first poem I ever wrote was about broccoli and how I hated everything about them even their dumb green shape.  It was… inspirational.  I grew up to be a hypocrite though because I love broccoli.  I enjoy eating anything that is green.  Brusselsprouts, green beans, asparagus, zucchini and any lettuce green available to me.  I am opening up my options for other vegetables that I haven’t always consumed.  I really dislike the texture of tomatoes, however I love ketchup, marinara and any tomato based product.  I force myself to consume them and have get over the texture of them as I get it.  I mean. even for my eye its enjoyable to have color variety on my plate.  Most of the time its just entirely green.  I am incorporating more peppers as well, something I wouldn’t pick out myself.  I look forward to eating more knowing that I am preparing it myself and am going to feel good about it as well.

I’ve always been an avid fruit eater but now a days I am trying new fruit that I’ve never had before.  I never had a plum before, how lame right? I live in America, I can eat whatever, whenever I want but I never had one! Lames.  Eric and I are using fruit to replace desserts and sweets.  (A thing I once mocked people for, so I know how I sound!) I have been adding honey and a hemp/flax seed mix to shake it up a bit.

I have had a dairy allergy since I was 17 (I’d like to go more into that later) therefore eating healthy is important to me.  After hearing everyone in the world reply “Oh my god, I could never live without cheese.” upon hearing my allergy, I have had to look at food differently.  It isn’t a pleasure.  It isn’t a luxury.  It is a means to survive.  We are living organisms, food is our power source.  I think we have the ability to enjoy the food we consume, but it is a 1st world mindset to think we should ALWAYS enjoy what we consume.  Sometimes, you have to eat the kale because it gives you the goods that you need.

I am posting photos of the food we have prepared on my instagram account: thewanderinglily3

We are done with the shows after this week: expect more posts to come! Thanks for sticking with me through my drought, I have so much more to say ya’ll! (Oh no… I’ve been in the south for too long..)

<3afk

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