My Chemical-Free Month

Hello family and friends!

Sorry, I’ve been a bad blogger! I’m always thinking of what to write on here, but it felt like another crazy month with lots of catching up to do so writing fell to the wayside. I’m going to aim to write on a weekly basis in the future, and my next post should be on what I didn’t feel like the books said or prepared me for when it came to pregnancy, birth, and parenthood. Just to give you a little head’s up, and myself some additional accountability to actually write the darn thing.

But here’s where I really need your help – I’m trying to accomplish a chemical-free month! It started with the combination of two distinct goals – 1) to go no-poo: stop washing my hair with shampoo and conditioner (I’m sure my mother and Aunt Kris’ heart just sank) and 2) to do the Whole 30. Then, I figured, well why not try to go all out and do EVERYTHING? If I feel like chemicals in my hair and food aren’t good, then I’m sure they aren’t good in any form for my body. Since there’s already a zillion things online about both, I won’t go into the nitty gritty details of why I’m doing this, but rather HOW I’m planning on accomplishing my goals over the next 30 days.

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(Giant cart of our week’s worth of groceries) 

1) I’m going to do food prep EVERY Sunday night for the WHOLE WEEK.

Last night, Mike and I spent 2.5 hours (till we were exhausted and learned it was *only* 10 p.m. Just call me Grandma Bennett…) cutting and dicing up a week’s worth of food for me to eat (the man is a Saint, people). Now, our fridge is fully stocked with lots of fresh produce and meats that are easy to put together. For me, eating unhealthy is usually a lot easier and more convenient than healthy eating so this alleviates some of that frustration (i.e. when after pumping and breastfeeding at night, I’m ravenous for food in the morning) in having to wait to eat something that’s a more healthful option.

Side note: I didn’t do *all* my meal prep yesterday, but I got enough done to already feel a lot of the benefits by Monday morning.

2) Set a bedtime and stick to it. Generally speaking.

You can tell I’m a real stickler already, huh? I’ve not accomplished my first goal (but I got far on it!), and am only doing this one “generally speaking”. I say that because with tonight’s game (GO BLUE!), I doubt I’ll be making it to bed at my goal of 9 p.m. Yes, you read that right – 9 o’clock is when I’d like to find myself meeting up with the Sand Man. But there are exceptions, and tonight will be one of them. Or Tuesday night’s when I go out with some girl friends and talk and read So Long Insecurity by Beth Moore. Outside of that, and *very* special occasions, I’m really going to try to go to sleep at a decent time for three reasons – 1) I find that it’s a lot easier to ‘just eat’ when I’m tired which occurs when I go to bed late by default, 2) after staying up late, I am rundown the next day and my inhibitions are down and 3) I am really good at mindlessly eating or having ‘fun’ eating when Mike and I watch late-night TV (i.e. my newest addiction, Rocky Road ice cream over some even yummier Scandal episode).

3) Make a projected food plan for the week with lots of protein and fat.

A big problem for me anytime I’ve tried to stick to a more Paleo (Google it too!) approach on food is that I feel like I’m constantly hungry. Dairy and gluten-filled products tend to do a really good job of filling me up so to supplement I’m going to be eating a lot of protein and fat. Every single meal I eat will have some form of fat and protein in it – eggs, avocados, olive oil, and chicken were the four I stuck to today and it worked well.

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(Bottles I used for my baking soda “shampoo” and apple cider vinegar “conditioner)

4) Don’t go out to eat.

This is “know thyself” moment for me. If I am out and about, I might as well be on a cruise to Temptation Island. I know my realistic limits, and so, I’m going to be keeping my take out and go out orders to a minimum over the next 30 days.

5) Make it FUN!

No one said a month dedicated to mindful, healthful eating had to be boring – although, it easily could be. I’m making recipes that sound like fun, and am next week going to start making and trying foods I haven’t before. I put lime and lemon in my water today, and tomorrow will probably put some combination of kiwi, strawberry and blueberry to keep it flavorful. Since I find a lot of enjoyment from food, I think looking at all the things I can have (as opposed to the ones I can’t) will be a great way to stay motivated over the next 30 days and stick to my guns.

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(First day of “No Poo” after washing my hair with baking soda and apple cider vinegar concoctions)

So, those are my top 5 ways to stick to the Whole 30 over the next 30 days. Today was Day 1, and I’m already looking forward to Day 30! Ha! Just like birth, reading a lot of positive outcomes and stories has encouraged me this is possible and going to be a great journey! Let me know if you’d like to learn more about it, or if you know chemical-free natural ways to make the following:

Deodorant. I’m using the Arm and Hammer Paraben and Aluminum-free and have been over the last year-ish, but didn’t know if there was a DIY-naturally made recipe? In the meantime, I’ll allow everyone the peace of mind in knowing I’ll be using a daily application to remain stench-free.

Dish Soap (can you use just Castille Soap?). I’m using Seventh Generation free and clear for now.

Make-up other than general powder. I have a cocoa powder and baking soda mix that I started using, but would love other make-up ideas if they’re out there!

Exfoliating face wash. I haven’t looked into it yet, but I’m sure there’s one out there!

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(Obligatory Marin picture of the week since you don’t really care what I eat or put in my body)

Have a wonderful week! And remember, GO MICHIGAN!

Ashley

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