Monday, July 20, 2009

A bit about our family

Here is some background info, in bullet point, because I'm lazy, I mean, efficient.

* I'm Nessa; married to Dave. 2 daughters: Lily (4) & Aevryn (2).

* We live in Northern Michigan, just enough out of the way to make it inconvenient, but without any of the perks of true country living (this is a major peeve of mine; I'm sure I'll go on and on about it, if given the opportunity. I have dreams of redecorating the house and landscaping (minor tweaks, really) and then selling the house next spring.

* At the moment, we are following a primal/paleo/grain-free style of eating. We don't digest grains or heavy starches well, so we've just cut them out, along with all sugar, refined or otherwise (a small amount of maple syrup or raw honey are the exceptions). In addition, we are always dairy-, soy-, corn-, egg-, gluten-, legume- (including all beans, peanuts, soy & green beans), most tree nut-, and seed-free. I have dreams of having eggs back sometime soon. Dave, follows are diet most of the time, however he does eat eggs freely, and consumes a moderate amount of seeds & nus, plus cultured dairy, raw whenever possible.

* We try to live very simply and mindfully. We reuse & recycle as much as we can. We keep a compost pile going. We buy in bulk and bring our own containers when doing so. We love our local co-op and right now the farmer's markets are in full swing. We don't run out and buy stuff all the time just to have it. I love a good bargain and find second-hand shops and yard sales endlessly fascinating and practical.

* Our (Dave & I, that is) biggest vice revolves around our nighttime screen-time: computers/internet, some TV, movies & video games. To counteract this, we spend as much time as possible outside, weather permitting. We like to hike and swim and just hang out in the yard. I have two gardens going right now, which requires some upkeep.

* We are often labeled as "weird" or "strange". We live fairly outside the mainstream and don't mind at all. Various ideals we uphold include: usefulness of herbal and other nature-based medicines; co-sleeping with our children; "extended" (past the socially "acceptable time limit") breastfeeding; supporting locally owned, community-minded businesses; seasonal, organic, local eating; enjoying and appreciating the outdoors; reading, reading, reading; supporting a woman's right to birth at home & midwifery care; "gentle discipline" for the kiddos - loving guidance and modeling of expectations; treating our children as fully formed individuals with valid thoughts, feelings & emotions - this can get complicated, as our 4yo tends to act way older than her age, not always in a "good" way. I frequently have to remind myself that she's just 4 and my expectations of her abilities far outstrip her current limits.

* To go along with the last point, I waffle between wanting to live self-sufficiently off the grid, with a huge garden and pastured animals and wanting to live in an efficient downtown space, with a garden for a yard and within walking/biking distance of most places. I get stuck with liking things on the polar opposites. This can make decision making difficult. I often end up compromising and ending up dissatisfied. I am working on this. Slowly.

* We are strongly exploring the idea of home(un)schooling. Lily isn't "of age" to start Kindergarten for another year yet, so it's not an issue right this second. At the moment, I plan to look at a local alternative/natural-minded charter school but I have a feeling we're going to HS for at least the elementary years.

* I am a fairly crafty person. I especially love to knit & sew. I am hoping to launch an etsy store this fall, specializing in kids' play items such as: doll slings & wraps; baby doll diapers; games; bean bags; and possibly some dolls' & kids' dress-up clothes.

So, I seem to have meandered my way to the end of this list. I am now distracted because Dave just put on Kathy Griffin's"My Life on the D-list".

Obligatory Welcome

I've tried blogging in the past. I've had a personal blog (that got way too personal and emotionally heavy and lost its purpose), a wedding-prep blog, a waiting-for-baby blog, and a food blog. I find my attention and dedication to the single-purpose blogs wanes and then I start to feel bad about neglecting it and then this pressure builds so I avoid it, and, well... I haven't updated my personal blog in over 8m and my food blog in 4.

Yet, I'm pulled back to having a journal with feedback. It satisfies my need to get everything out of my brain and "cataloged", while also engaging in, hopefully, meaningful discourse with others.

Those of you who know me and are familiar with "my story", know that we've got a food "situation" in our house. Call it allergies, call it sensitivities, call it food digestion issues. In fact, call it all three. I am constantly researching and trying various ways to maximize our health through our food. I've learned a lot on the way, and I have been really needing a place to put it all, in a (semi-)organized fashion.

As I envision it at the outset, this blog will be bits and pieces of our life, pulled from all arenas as it seems relevant, appropriate and interesting. When I say we are mindfully meandering, I mean that we are trying to live in the moment and be aware of ourselves and our impact on others, but we are also trying to live more simply and more relaxed. We trust that we'll get from point A to point B our in our own time, probably having stopped to collect 4 rocks, a feather, 2 pinecones, a "walking stick" and a leaf along the way.
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