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As I wrote on the blog last year -

I love my husband & children more than words can possibly express. I feel so blessed to have 3 of the most amazing children entrusted to our care giving me the opportunity & privilege of being called “Mom“. HAPPY MOTHERS DAY to all you Mama’s out there, biological, adoptive, or waiting to be. May we never take Motherhood for granted & may our children eventually learn not to take all the things we do for them for granted either.

This morning, Roy & the kids surprised me with this pretty bouquet of flowers & a bag of Rolo’s (my current chocolate addiction). Since there’s no way I’d be willing to share my Rolo’s I will instead share with you, via photo, the lovely bouquet ;)

Mothers Day Bouquet

Happy Mothers Day!

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DietMy aunt recently posted a link on Facebook to a blog posting she had found entitled “Fibromyalgia to Pain Free!”

I’ve heard it said many times that people have found success in changing their diets, which has ultimately led to changing their lives, after suffering with debilitating Fibro & other such ailments.

Food definitely plays as a huge factor in contributing to pretty well all health problems &, if you have the self control needed to completely change your diet & make it a permanent lifestyle, then that’s great!

For me however, I’m a “Foodie”. I love food. It’s an addiction & a vice. It’s my comfort, my reward, my punishment & more all rolled in to one.

I went through major surgery (the gastric bypass) to try & change my life with food & it worked… for 3 years… then old triggers set in, & although I can still only consume small portions, I started to snack on things that aren’t healthy choices & slowly gained back a chunk of my weight.

anti-inflammatory-foodsIf I could just stop & be healthy, I would! but it’s the root of my issues (or rather feels like the glue that holds me together regardless of whether things are going good or rough in life). I don’t seem to have the mental strength to just give it all up.

I was able to quit smoking (5 years smoke free this August!) but the body NEEDS to eat to survive & I find dealing with food problems far worse than giving up smoking. I’ve sought counseling to help with this a few times since my surgery because I know that the issue goes beyond the food. It’s those issues that lead me to it & which cause me to feel powerless against being able to gain the necessary control over it so that I can continuously make the right choices regarding it so that I can gain back my health, re lose the weight & perhaps even experience life, once again, pain free.

Unfortunately, thus far it’s been without much success. In a lot of ways I suppose I’ve come to a place in my life currently where it all just seems so overwhelming & too daunting a task to take on. But, I do hold out hope that perhaps, in time, I will find the inner strength needed to do this.

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Shamrock Shake

I just love the McDonald’s Shamrock Shakes that are only available in March.

Unfortunately, they are so FULL of sugar that after only a few sips of one it literally makes me sick. However, a week or two ago I stumbled upon a recipe from The World According to Eggface for making a much healthier, weight loss surgery friendly, version. So, while I was out doing some grocery shopping yesterday, I picked up the necessary ingredients & made my own slightly modified version of hers….

I’m typically not a fan of any protein drinks or powders but this turned out pure AWESOME &, if you like Shamrock Shakes but not all the sugar & calories that are in the McDonald’s version, then this, my friend, is for you!


Ingredients You’ll Need:

* 1 Cup. Very Vanilla Silk Brand Soy Milk (definitely my favorite brand & version on the market)
* 1 scoop of Vanilla Protein Powder (I used Pure Protein’s Vanilla Cream Powder)
* 1 1/2 Tablespoons Sugar Free Vanilla Torani or Davinci Syrup
* A few drops of Peppermint Extract
* A few drops of Green Food Coloring
* 8 Ice Cubes (if you want it to be nice & thick like the actual Shamrock Shakes are)
* Optional: A small dollop of Fat Free or Sugar Free Whipped Cream on top.

What To Do:

* Blend on high till desired consistency is reached, then pour into a tall glass & enjoy!


Oh, FYI… Here’s the nutrition info for just the small 12oz McDonald”s version:

(click the image to enlarge for easier reading)McDonalds Shamrock Shake Nutrition Info

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I can’t believe it’s already been a year since Michael joined our family…..

I remember seeing this double rainbow in the sky as I ran around frantically, like a chicken with my head cut off, after receiving the phone call telling me about him, trying to get everything in order so I could fly to Philadelphia that night. After having a match fall through just a couple months prior the rainbow seemed like a sign of renewed hope & assurance that this was truly the baby boy meant to join our family.

As I sat at the airport late that night, waiting for my delayed flight, our agency texted me a photo of him & I fell instantaneously in love. I remember the feeling like it was yesterday & thinking to myself “Yep, this really is Michael. This is our long awaited for baby boy!”.

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Jody’s Weight Loss Progress
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