Sunday, September 27, 2015

Happy Birthday Landry!

Today is a big day in our house as it is Landry's birthday!!!

And as much as this day is full of celebration, this day can't go by in my head without a bit of sadness on my heart. Let me explain.

Don't get me wrong.  I am feeling super happy that she is home with us and is able to celebrate her day!  As far as we know, this is her first birthday celebration.  Most of you that know me know that I love to celebrate birthdays....heck, I love to celebrate anything so it was super fun to spoil her today.  We decided to not have a big birthday party for her this year. We just think it is too soon and she just wouldn't enjoy it as she is usually glued to our hips with any more than our immediate family/close friends in the room. So as much as it breaks my creative heart to not plan the most AWESOME Yo Gabba Gabba party, I will have to settle for a Kelli-made Yo Gabba Gabba cake and a yummy family pasta dinner for our pasta lovin' 2 year old!

I am also feeling a bit sad today.  You see we aren't for certain that this is the exact day she was born as there was no note with her when she was found. But given that this time of year has been estimated as to when she was born 2 years ago, my heart breaks for her birth mother at this time.  I ache for her to know how so very loved Landry is and that we applaud her for choosing life and for leaving her in a safe place.  (We know that her abandonment was out of love because of where she was left.)  I just pray today that God places peace in her heart every year this time of year and that she will somehow know that it is ok and our girl is doing great!


We have had a fantastic summer and she has adjusted so well since my last post.  She definitely has her moments so I would say that between 4-6 in the afternoon is not the best time to enter my house as she is super cranky, hungry, tired, etc.  The way she communicates with us now is screaming at us which is quite comical for the first 5 minutes but then......

She is certainly holding her own with the boys and loves to wrestle them.  The minuted they sit or lay on the floor she is crawling all over them. And boy do they love her!!!!  Their relationship with her has made my heart grow a mile.  It is just the cutest thing to see them love on her and make her laugh.  

She has picked up some additional sign language which has helped a ton and she has also started to talk a little.   Her most common things to say are "Hi" "All-bun" (all done) "I lu loo" (I love you) "Eye" (as she points to her eye)  "Ehhhh" (Ellie)  & "mama" (but mostly when she is whining)  If I ask her to say "mama" on command she usually shakes her head no at me, that Lil Stinker!!!  She loves giving hugs and kisses and has become quite fond of music requesting "Up a baa" while pointing her fingers in the air. (that would be her sign for Twinkle Twinkle Little Star).

She has overcome so big fears!  Yay, Landry!

She sure does love Ellie!

Grass??? Ehhhh, no biggie now!

And this girl now loves to swing!!!

We are working on her fear of sand weekly in therapy as we are a beach family so this girl needs to be A-O-K with sand by May!  I think in my last update I mentioned that she had failed her hearing and vision test at our pediatrician visit.  Well, she got glasses a few weeks ago and boy have they made a difference.  Not to mention she is just the cutest thing with them on!

The day she got them she just kept pointing at everything!  It was amazing and when the boys got home from school that day she just kept going up to them and waving as if she was thinking, "Well, now that I can see you, Hello there!"  

We go next week for her ABR which is a more extensive hearing test.  Keep her in your prayers as they will have to sedate her and this mama is a bit nervous for all of it.  We also have a follow up appointment with the Neurologist this week.  I think he will be pleased with her improvement as we have been working hard at PT and OT every week.  Once we get the results from the ABR, we will start Speech Therapy, hopefully in a few weeks.

Other than that all is good in the Munkel house.....busy but good!  Boys are back in school so it is nice for everyone to be on a schedule. Wyatt has joined Brax at our elementary school so they really enjoy riding the bus together everyday.

Oh, big news!  I finally decided to stay home which has been a nice change so as the boys had their first day of school I had my last day of work, hahahaha!

But don't worry, I am going to keep my self plenty busy now that I am back in the groove of things so stay tuned for some exciting updates on my future plans!



Wednesday, September 2, 2015

My Whole30 Experience

Day 31!!!


I made it through 30 days with NO cheats! (minus the few times I was feeding Landry and I would lick my finger by habit!)  I don't mean to toot my own horn but I am pretty proud of myself.  Eating has always been a pleasure for me....I mean, I'm from Louisiana so how could food not be pleasure.  I have come to realize on this fit journey that I am on that sugar was the one thing holding me back.  I have tried to cut back each day or even gone cold turkey but it never worked.

I recently watched Fed Up on Netflix and it really made me mad of how I have let the sugar industry make me such an addict.   It made me question what my motives were in to having so much sugar each day and also made me aware that sugar is in almost EVERYTHING processed!  Yuck!!  What is the world is sugar doing in some of these foods.  It is completely unnecessary!

I have looked into the Whole30 before- even printed out all of the cheat sheets but just couldn't ever pull the trigger. It looked TOO HARD!

But at Whole30 says.....

 "It is not hard. Don’t you dare tell us this is hard. Quitting heroin is hard. Beating cancer is hard. Drinking your coffee black. Is. Not. Hard. You won’t get any coddling, and you won’t get any sympathy for your “struggles”.

Well, ok then.

 “It is not hard. Don’t you dare tell us this is hard. Quitting heroin is hard. Beating cancer is hard. Drinking your coffee black. Is. Not. Hard. You won’t get any coddling, and you won’t get any sympathy for your ‘struggles’.” - See more at:
 “It is not hard. Don’t you dare tell us this is hard. Quitting heroin is hard. Beating cancer is hard. Drinking your coffee black. Is. Not. Hard. You won’t get any coddling, and you won’t get any sympathy for your ‘struggles’.” - See more at:

With all of that being said, let's get to the good stuff, right?

Soooooo, what happened in 30 days???

It has been an AMAZING transformation not only with my body but with my mind. 

  • I am down 14 lbs....whoa!  In one month!!!
  • I feel slimmer & stronger.
  • I have upped my weight in workouts and improved my time in runs.
  • My skin is looking great- as quite a few people have told me (some not knowing that I was even on this detox)
  • I no longer have bloating. (Yeah for no food baby!)
  • Dark circles/bags under eyes are noticeably less- no longer feel the need to use eye concealer every time I leave my room.
  • I am sleeping better- I wear a Fit Bit so it has been pretty great to compare the difference in my sleep patterns between last month and today.
  • I have energy to workout and no longer am having my "energy" pre workout treats to feel like I have a good workout.

  • I am no longer looking to food to console me on those hard days.  I have been doing a lot of walking/running throughout the day and feel that is helping to clear my mind.
  • I have a better understanding now of how I need to fuel my body.
  • I have a want to take better care of my body and give it essential nutrients (protein, veggies & healthy fat) at every meal. It is a gift from God to be here and I want to appreciate that a bit more these days!
  • I feel stronger in the sense that I have accomplished something big. I mean, no sugary treats in 30 days for me.....AMAZING!  I probably haven't done that since I was in the womb back in 1979!
  • I no longer have the "haze" feeling throughout the day.  My mind feels clear and sharp.
  • I no longer have the 2 pm slump where I need to eat something sweet or have more coffee to get me through the rest of the day.

I think that everyone should go through the Whole30!  Not necessarily for the body bonuses (although they are nice) but for the mind changing thoughts about food.  It feels good to detox and get all of the bad out and start with a clean slate.

The first step for you is getting the book Whole30 and thoroughly going through the Whole30 website. It has great recipes and printable sheets to make the process super easy to follow.  There are also some great Whole30 First Timers Facebook groups to join.  I would say the next step is to sit down and prepare- grocery list, meal plan, etc.

I didn't really focus on many recipes although I did make a few and will share with you below.  I really tried to focus on having a prep day each week where I would prepare ample amounts of protein and veggies to store in the fridge and be ready for those meal times.  Majority of my cooking consisted of opening the fridge and mixing/matching what we ready to go.  I also stocked up on healthy fats (avocado, oils, olives, nuts & ghee) as well as prepared Dump Ranch to fancy up some of my usual dishes.  I tried to make mayo but did not succeed :(

I know quite a few of you are wondering what in the world are some of those dishes that I posted so here is the breakdown of all 30 days:

Day 1:  
Breakfast- 2 sunny side up eggs over sweet potato hash with kale and avocado
Lunch:  Taco Salad (lettuce, ground beef with seasoning & mango salsa (mango, avocado, lime juice and jalapeno)
Dinner: (not pictured) I went out to dinner and had a bun-less burger with mustard and a side of steamed broccoli

Day 2: 
B- Boiled Eggs with Apples & Almond Butter (not the best but a breakfast on the run)
L- Sweet Potato Nachos- sliced sweet potatoes baked and topped with seasoned ground beef, mango salsa & tomato based salsa.
D- Zucchini noodles with eggplant, sun-dried tomatoes and portobello mushrooms tossed in olive oil.  Served with a side of raw almonds and mango.

Day 3: 
B- 2 eggs over easy with potato, sun-dried tomato, spinach & mushroom hash with a side of apples and almonds
L- Smoked Salmon salad with tomatoes, oranges, avocado & homemade citrus dressing.
D- Baked chicken with olive tapenade and roasted broccoli & potatoes topped with green onions.

Day 4:
B- Egg Salad- Boiled eggs, potatoes and hot sauce with an apple (breakfast on the go)
L-  Taco Salad (recipe above)
D- Sweet Potato with grilled chicken & green onions.  Roasted broccoli and olives on the side.

Day 5:
B- Chia pudding topped with almonds, raspberries & blueberries (Some may consider this a SWYPO item so be careful if this brings out the sugar dragon)
L- not pictured
D- Grilled Pork Tenderloin with Mediterranean salad- lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, hearts of palm, banana peppers & Paleo Greek Dressing.

Day 6:
B- 2 Eggs Sunny Side up with sweet potato & spinach hash with 1/2 grapefruit on the side.
L-  no pictured
D- Plantains with shredded chicken, salsa, avocado & jalapenos served with a side on mango.

Day 7:
B- Chia Pudding with Blueberry & Coconut (not the best option)
L- Bun less burger wrapped in lettuce with avocado & mustard with a side of green beans.
D- Adele's Chicken Apple Sausage with roasted zucchini, potatoes & mushrooms.

Day 8:
B- 2 Eggs Sunny Side Up with roasted peppers and protobello mushrooms with a side of avocado.
L- Plantains with shredded chicken, salsa, avocado & cilantro with a side of grapes.
D- (out to dinner) Salad with broccoli, banana peppers, mushrooms, beets, eggs, olives & cucumbers with oil and vinegar.

Day 9:
B- Brussels Sprout hash with mushrooms and sweet potato with almond butter.
L- not pictured
D- (out to dinner) Salad with grilled shrimp, tomatoes, radishes & artichoke hearts with oil & vinegar

Day 10:
B- Brussels Sprout hash with chicken apple sausage, roasted red pepper & mushrooms.
L- Plantains with tuna, mango & cilantro
D- Eggs with green onions and grapefruit 

Day 11:
B- Chicken Apple Sausage with Brussels sprout/ sweet potato hash and sun-dried tomatoes.
L- Salad with tuna, salsa & avocado
D- Shrimp Salad with cabbage, basil, carrots, red pepper & home roasted cashews.

Day 12:
B- 2 Eggs Sunny Side up with Brussels sprout/ potato hash with salsa.
L- Cabbage with basil, carrots, red pepper & home roasted cashews topped with seasoned ground beef.
D- Bun-less burger wrapped in lettuce with mustard.  Served with sweet potato & grapes.

Day 13:
B- Chicken Apple Sausage with mushroom & Brussels sprout hash
L- Cabbage Roll with sweet potato and olives.
D- Plantain Tostada with shredded pork topped with homemade guacamole.  Served with cilantro lime cauliflower rice & pineapple

Day 14:  
B- Chia pudding with bananas, coconut & almonds with 1 scrambled egg topped with mushrooms.
L- Salad with grilled shrimp, artichoke, roasted peppers & asparagus with oil & vinegar
D- Plantain Tostada with shredded pork topped with homemade guacamole & cilantro lime cauliflower rice with a side of roasted broccoli.

Day 15:
B- Plantain Tostada with shredded pork topped with salsa & green onions with a side of avocado & 1/2 grapefruit.
L- Bun-less burger wrapped in lettuce with mustard and a side of roasted potatoes & grapes
D- Zucchini Noodles with homemade marinara with roasted eggplant and seasoned ground beef with a side of green beans

Day 16:
B- Portobello Mushroom bake with 2 eggs over easy with a side of roasted potatoes, sauteed spinach & avocado.
L- not pictured
D- Brussels sprout and Kale salad with grilled steak and peaches and oil and vinegar

Day 17:
B- Chicken Apple Sausage with roasted potatoes and spinach
L- Cabbage roll with mustard and a side of sweet potato & grapes
D- Plantain Tostada with seasoned ground beef, cauliflower rice, avocado & cilantro.

Day 18:
B- 2 Eggs Sunny Side Up with sweet potato hash topped with green onions and a side of avocado.
L- (Zoe's) Grilled Veggie Kabobs and steamed broccoli (I was not feeling so great after this meal so I am assuming there was something in their seasoning or they did not follow my requests)
D- Taco Salad

Day 19:
B- Scrambled eggs with prosciutto, spinach & mushrooms with 1/2 grapefruit
L- Lettuce Tacos with seasoned beef, salsa & avocado with a side of grapes.
D- Grilled shrimp over Brussels sprout hash with a sweet potato on the side.

Day 20:
B- 2 Eggs Sunny Side Up with a side of sauteed spinach and sweet potato
L- Smoked Salmon salad over spinach with olives, roasted red peppers & banana peppers.
D- Grilled Chicken, cauliflower rice with sauteed spinach, roasted peppers & avocado.

Day 21:
B- Banana & Almonds (rush out the door breakfast)
L- Broccoli Slaw with grilled chicken, home roasted cashews, coconut amino, cilantro, jalapeno, lime & avocado
D- Cracklin Chicken with roasted broccoli & potatoes

Day 22:
B- Cracklin Chicken with roasted broccoli, potatoes and side of mango.
L- not pictured
D- Zucchini Noodles with Homemade marinara and seasoned ground beef.  Served with a side Kale Salad with tomatoes and Dump Ranch.

Day 23:
B- Baked Egg Cups with Zucchini & Prosciutto with side sweet potato
L- Kale and Brussels sprout salad with Cracklin Chicken, tomatoes and dump ranch.
D- Turkey Burger with Zucchini Fritter (use almond meal instead of flour and no cheese) topped with dump ranch and served with roasted potatoes and broccoli.

Day 24:
B- 2 Eggs Sunny Side up over zucchini cake with side of sauteed mushrooms
L- Lettuce Wrap with Turkey burger, avocado & salsa and side of mango
D- Turkey burger with zucchini fritter (use almond meal instead of flour and no cheese) , avocado topped with dump ranch.  Served with side of sweet potato.

Day 25:
B:  Egg Cup with Zucchini & Prosciutto served with Zucchini Fritter (use almond meal instead of flour and no cheese) topped with dump ranch and side of mango.
L- Spinach Salad with soft boiled eggs, home roasted cashews & avocado topped with dump ranch.
D- not pictured

Day 26:
B- 2 Eggs Sunny Side Up with sauteed mushrooms & spinach
L- Cobb Salad with Chicken, eggs & tomatoes topped with oil & vinegar. 
D- Seasoned ground beef and kale over plantains topped with avocado & salsa with side of pineapple.

Day 27:
B- Chicken Apple Sausage with sauteed spinach & mushrooms
L- Lettuce wraps with seasoned ground beef, plantains, salsa & avocado
D- (out) El Felix salad with Steak and guacamole.

Day 28: 
B- 2 boiled eggs, banana & almonds (breakfast on the go)
L- Not pictured
D- Veggie Omelet with tomatoes, broccoli, mushrooms & spinach with a side of steamed hash browns.

Day 29:
B- 2 Eggs Sunny Side Up with a side of sweet potato hash topped with avocado.
D- Egg Roll in a bowl with a side of mango & pineapple

Day 30:
B- 2 Eggs Sunny Side Up with a side of sweet potato hash topped with avocado
L- Zucchini noodles with turkey burger, sun-dried tomatoes, mushrooms, broccoli & spinach topped with olive oil & red pepper
D- Grilled Chicken with dump ranch and a side of sauteed asparagus, red onion & mushroom with roasted artichokes. 

I did have iced coffee every morning with almond milk and found that it tasted better when it was made in a cold french press and stored in the fridge over night.  I also would have snacks after I worked out and those varied a bit from sweet potatoes with chicken to apples with almond/cashew butter

So there you have it!  

My Whole30:)

I encourage all of you to try this out- I mean what have you got to lose! 
Feel free to contact me if you have any questions or need a lil push off the ledge:)