Our Paleo Family

A day in the Life with Our Paleo Family – Spring 2017

Chris and Elizabeth, 
married 15 years, 
both in mid-40s
Luke is 12
Kate is 10
no pets

Just to keep things fresh and interesting, I’ll be doing a quarterly “day in the life” post. If nothing else, this will serve as a good scrapbook for me. Here we go…

Monday, April 10th, 2017

6:30 AM Wake up. Even if my alarm were not set, I would wake up at 6:30 or a few minutes before. So then why is is so hard to get out of bed?

Downstairs I go, start my coffee. Write up the schedule for the day for the kids while the coffee brews. Coffee in hand, I head to “my chair” for my quiet time. I sit in this chair, bundled up in my super soft blanket, and don’t move for about 45 minutes.

  • I work on my Bible study, which currently is the Crown Financial Study. I thought we were in good shape with our finances, but turns out I had a lot to learn. I’m about half way through the study and I’m very glad I chose to participate.
  • I have been keeping a food journal every day since January (for more details on why that is, see these posts on Insulin Resistance here, here and here.) While I’m in my chair, I record any thoughts from the day before, like how I felt physically, did I have lots of energy, was I dragging, etc. I also write down my planned meals and snacks for that day. If I don’t plan what I’m going to eat, it will be the junkiest things I can find in the house when hunger strikes. Yes, I need a boss telling me what to do, even if that boss is me.
  • Also in the chair, I’ll pray, maybe chat with my husband or one of the kids if they dare to step into my realm during this time.
    • My son comes in about 7:30 asking for help with his leg. He fell in the woods playing about three weeks ago. We are slowly piecing together what happened and it seems that a stick must have punctured his leg right around the knee and actually went into his leg a few inches before coming out. What was left is a puncture wound and a lot of swelling. But the wound has not healed, there is an infection in his leg and remnants of that stick keep coming out. So we change the bandage about 5 times per day and check the pus situation.

All done doctoring, I begrudgingly move from my chair. The coffee is gone and it’s time to face the day. In an effort to slightly reduce our utility costs, we run the dishwasher and washing machine overnight when the rates are slightly lower. I started laundry before bed so now I have to get it in the dryer so at least one load gets done before the rates go up at 9:00.

Brush teeth, put in contacts, take allergy medicine. Today, putting in the contacts is a challenge because I apparently lifted a few too many bags of mulch over the weekend and ended up causing one of those hemorrhages in my eye. It hurt a lot over the weekend, but has faded now. Still looks really awful and it hurts to put my contact in that eye, but I’m about to go workout and I don’t like to exercise in my glasses.

8:10 leave for the Y. This is my favorite day of the week at the Y because it’s my favorite class: cycle beat. We cycle to the beat of the music, doing lots of upper body moves. It’s a major calorie burner and really fun. At the end, we do some weightlifting, again to the beat of the music. It’s a fast hour.

9:45 Home. Kids get a quick snack and settle in to watch their history lesson on the computer. We have homeschooled since the beginning, but this year decided to add a history class via one of the online companies. Our social studies for the year is geography and we all wanted some history too. This has been a good option because it gives me time to get myself together after the Y.

So as not to be accused of posting only flattering pictures.

While they watch their lesson, I shower, attempt to dress in something other than pajamas then make breakfast. Today, because I’ve just had a major workout and it’s late, I’ll have a more carb-heavy breakfast so I’ll be ready for lunch around noon. Today it’s plain fat free Greek yogurt with strawberries and some granola. Honestly, I don’t love yogurt and I know it’s dairy, which is a no-no on the Paleo diet, but I feel good when I eat a little yogurt. Plus it’s filling and high in protein. This will keep me going until lunch around noon.

There is so much to do today, the house is a mess, which it always is after the weekend, so I am feeling a little stressed.

10:30 I’m finally dressed, the laundry is switched out, some is even folded. History lesson still going on so I unload the dishwasher and tidy up a few things while waiting for kids to finish history and get ready for working with me.

Putting the laundry on my bed to fold ensures it gets done before bedtime. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

10:45-12:45 School time with the kiddos. Kate, my daughter, who is in the 4th grade, works with me for most everything, whereas my son, Luke, who is in the 7th grade, is mostly independent. I do one spelling lesson with him a week because I just want that one-on-one time with him. It’s going too fast. We do geography, Bible, science and writing together as a group. Sometimes, their “kids” join us in class.

12:45-1:15 lunch time. They eat some version of this everyday:

During my lunch break, I was cleaning up from breakfast and baking cookies so ended up with a few slices of deli turkey, a few of these new baked olive oil potato chips and a big handful of lettuce for my lunch. Didn’t have time to mess with salad dressing and a fork today.

Homemade slice and bakes!

I was in a super big hurry, but had promised to bring a gluten free/dairy free treat to Classical Conversations tomorrow for our last day. I made my sugar cookies, but just rolled up the dough in a log, refrigerated for an hour, then sliced and baked. They’re sort of circles. With an admittedly very sloppy icing job.

1:15-2:00 Clean, clean, clean! Normally we do “fun cleaning” which means we play music for two or three songs, cleaning really fast while the music plays. Then we take a break and I read to them for a couple minutes. Repeat this cycle until the cleaning is done. We just didn’t have time for that today so we cleaned only – without the fun part. No, it wasn’t fun, but it was efficient.

Ran out to the garden to pick some lettuce for dinner.

2:00 We’re out the door for doctor’s appointment for Luke’s leg. Today we will find out if he needs surgery or not. He is rightfully pretty terrified of that prospect. But it’s been three weeks since his accident and this wound should be healing by now. My mother’s intuition tells me something is not right even though he walks normally most of the time and says it doesn’t hurt. He can’t run properly though. And the pus. Constant pus and other “stuff” coming out of that wound.

On the way to the doctor, Luke asks if we can turn off the CD and pray that he won’t need surgery. So sweet. Of course, I did pray what he requested, but also that the doctor would make the right decision.


Waiting patiently for the doc. Sometimes I cave and let them play games on my phone in situations like this, but I try not to. This was a particularly long wait today, but I managed to keep them reading the whole time. Score!

Result from doctor’s appointment: he has to have the surgery. I’m relieved. I think if the doctor had said to wait, I would have been worried and clearly, his leg is not healing.

4:00 We stop by and visit grandparents as they are about to head out on a trip. I knew they would want to hug their grandchildren before they left and I want to explain the surgery to them in person so they won’t worry – too much.

4:30 Quick trip to the Dollar Tree to pick up some items for our homeschool Easter party. Of course, I would be in charge of this and it’s the day of Luke’s surgery. Oh well. Other mamas will take care of it. But I did need to get a few supplies and also thank you cards for their tutors at Classical Conversations.

4:45 Home and have a whopping 20 minutes before we need to leave to take Luke to tennis practice. Even with this injury to his leg, he’s been able to play, so we’re all thankful for that. His season will be cut short after the surgery though.

I sit down and work on writing up this post while the kids work on their chores and fuel up since dinner will be late.

Also during this time, I make arrangements for getting the Easter party covered, find childcare for Kate during Luke’s surgery and also try to make a couple appointments and reservations for my date weekend away which is coming up in July. I packed a lot into just a few minutes. I told the kids I had a short window of time to get a lot of things done so to just do what they’ve been told and don’t talk to me. I said it nicely.

5:05 We head out the door for tennis. His practice is 1 1/2 hours long. Even though it means driving back and forth twice, I drop him off rather than waiting. This way I can still make dinner. I hate crock pot food so that is just not something I’m going to do. I’d rather drive back and forth and have a fresh dinner. I have nothing against crock pots or those who love them, I just don’t like the taste of the food they produce. I’m probably the only one.

5:45 Kate and I get home from dropping off Luke. I start dinner. It’s turkey meatballs, rice, salad and sautéed veggies. I get that all ready at 6:30. Kate showers while I cook. I have to run up and wash her hair. That child can stand in the shower for 20 minutes and come out with half her head dry and swear to me she washed her hair. My husband arrives home and has to eat and dash out to a Scoutmaster meeting. So Kate and I head back to the tennis courts to pick up Luke. Practice ends at 7:00.

7:15 The kids and I arrive at home. Dinner is ready and mostly still hot. We eat while watching part of an episode of the Great British Baking Show. Have you seen this? It’s on PBS during the summer. Now it’s on Netflix. Good clean, family friendly fun. We are a cooking family (obviously) so we love a good cooking competition. The only bad thing about this show is that the kids are constantly saying, “You have to figure out how to make that paleo.” My to do list in this regard is exceedingly long. Perhaps I’ll get those goodies made for my grandchildren!

I finish eating fast and clean up the kitchen. I give them until 7:50 to eat leisurely and watch their show.

7:50 Kate heads upstairs to get ready for bed, I make my bed (changed the sheets today, but just now having a chance to finish the job). One of Luke’s chores today was cleaning the downstairs shower. That’s his job because he’s the one who uses it the most. We added this bathroom a few years ago and I think it feels like a palace to him. It is not, I can assure you. I let him in on my multi-tasking secret: I clean the shower while I’m taking my shower. He started the job earlier today, but didn’t have time to finish. So he finishes his cleaning job, gets himself clean (at least I hope so), while I read to Kate.

If you’re a fan of the Anne of Green Gables books by Lucy Maud Montgomery, you might enjoy what we’re reading right now. It’s called Before Green Gables by Budge Wilson. It tells the story of Anne’s life prior to her arrival at Green Gables. I picked this up at the Homeschool conference last year and I read it to Kate on nights that my husband is out. This is either Boy Scout night or over the weekend of a scout camping trip. Usually my husband does bed time, which is a tremendous gift to me, but I really enjoy it when I get to do bedtime duty in his absence.

We read for a bit, then prayers, then lights out for my little girl.

8:25 Luke is ready for bed so I say prayers with him. The upcoming surgery is the topic of interest tonight. He is really curious about the anesthesia part of the process. Thankfully, we have an anesthesiologist for a friend so he can get all his questions answered! I’ve had quite a few different surgeries so I can speak fairly confidently about the process and I think this puts his mind at ease a tiny, little bit. I try to play up the cool parts: all the lights and equipment, how nice all the people will be. I can tell he is thinking about this, but is still very apprehensive and is afraid of too much pain.

Lights out for the Lukester and I head back downstairs to write up the rest of my day. I know that if I wait until tomorrow to do it, I will have forgotten most of the details!

8:40 Hubby gets home from his meeting. Quick greeting, then I get a little more work done before we have a chance to chat.

Tomorrow is our last class at Classical Conversations for the year and I have to gather all the things I need to take right now so the morning won’t be so rushed.

All that done, it’s time to quickly hash out the day with my wonderful husband. And as it’s after 9:00, I have officially turned into a pumpkin. Time to enjoy my tea and start winding down.

I watch an episode of Parenthood on Netflix. Most of these episodes end on a sad note, which is really irritating, but I love the show. That Ron Howard puts together some good stuff!

It has been an unusually busy day in the life of the Heinze family, but the rest of the week will likely be just as busy, if not more so as we prepare for Luke’s surgery, then recuperation, and then Easter prep.

10:00 Head upstairs to get myself ready for bed. Peak in on the kids because, of course I do. Chris laughs at this, but I just can’t help myself. Occasionally, I’ll think about it, decide it’s silly, of course, they’re fine, climb into bed, then climb back out five seconds later and check on them. I will do this until they leave home. And any time they come back to visit.

Writing this up has been a good reminder that I need to take lots of pictures of my kids! They’ve gone from itty bitty to pre-teen in the blink of an eye.

Quick follow-up: I just have to brag on my son for a moment. This kid fell during lunch break while engaged in an epic lightsaber battle with his best buddies. He had blood gushing out of his leg. We thought his leg was broken based on how it looked, but turned out there was no fracture. He never cried. He didn’t even complain about the pain.

He went through his surgery with flying colors and it turns out that stick we think he fell on, was actually still in his leg! Take a look at your pinkie finger. A piece of stick that size was lodged in the muscle of his leg. I’m so, so thankful I took him to the doctor and that we got a good one who wasn’t afraid to take some extreme measures to get to the bottom of the problem. And now he is on the mend and will be just fine.

And just because I can’t have a grubby post-gym picture as the only one in the post, here’s an Easter snap. We’re all sort of smiling and our eyes are open, so it’s a winner!

2 thoughts on “A day in the Life with Our Paleo Family – Spring 2017

  1. Jo

    Headed over from the DITL round up. So interesting to see how everyone else goes about their days. Also, so glad the surgery went well!

    1. Elizabeth Post author

      Thanks! We’re grateful too – to see him running around good as new! You’re right that it’s interesting to see all the other “days in the life.” We’re all so different, yet have so many things in common!