Hi, I’m Elizabeth, a 40 something wife and mother, someone who said I would never be a stay at home mom and turned out to be homeschooling mom! Life is funny sometimes. If the very thought of staying home with your kids and being responsible for their education makes you cringe, it makes me feel the same way sometimes! I’m mostly kidding. I love my kids and am so thankful for this life.
I also love my husband of 13 years. When we were dating and I found out he had Type I diabetes, I considered breaking up with him. I wasn’t sure I wanted to be with someone who had such a serious disease. Again, funny one, God. So this husband of mine, he has been completely supportive and encouraging through all of my medical stuff. I couldn’t have dreamed up anyone better to walk through life with.
My kids, 11 and 8, one boy and one girl, are equally wonderful. They always do what they’re told the first time and they absolutely love all the food I cook. Ok, so maybe that’s a bit of a stretch, but they are super kids and I love getting to spend so much time with them. They’re completely different from one another, yet they get along really well.
My third love is Jesus. I’m thankful to have parents who took me to church every time the doors were open. Because of that, my faith developed at a young age. I’ve ebbed and flowed in my Christian walk through the years, but I can say with certainty that I’m not where I’m going and I’m not where I’ve been. I’m learning to trust Him more and more each day, but I am a long way from being able to say that I’ve arrived and have nothing else to learn. Accepting my medical issues and the limitations that are a part of my life now has been a test of my faith to be sure. But I know that God works all things for the good of those who love Him. I love Him, so there must be good in this. Even if I can’t see it right now.
Something I do not love is having Crohn’s disease and arthritis. The short version of my health story is that I was diagnosed with Crohn’s in 2010 after a long journey through countless doctor’s visits, every diagnostic test imaginable, and a couple surgeries. After that diagnosis, I was instructed to take two very powerful drugs, with serious potential side effects. If I wanted to keep this disease at bay, I would have to take those drugs for the rest of my life and just hope I didn’t develop lymphoma or one of the other possible side effects. When did lymphoma become a side effect? But I did what I was told – for the first few years anyway. Then I found the Paleo diet and that’s why I’m here.
When I first starting eating paleo, it was so completely new to me that I had to follow recipes to the letter, which was not something I used to do very much. I like the “little of this and a little of that” way of cooking. That’s how I was taught. A year and a half in and I felt like I had the hang of paleo cooking.
But then in walks the Autoimmune Paleo (AIP) or Anti-inflammatory diet. My body is inflamed, so say my achy joints as well as my latest lab tests. I have got to get this under control
before I end up with more serious symptoms, maybe even more surgery. I have not yet gotten the hang of this AIP way of cooking. Whenever I think of something I want to cook, I realize I can’t because it has tomatoes, or we can’t have it because it has eggs. So many ingredients are unavailable to me on the AIP diet and I am bummed about it. I feel like my creativity has been flung out the window and been run over by a bus.
So here I am, writing a blog about life with autoimmune disease, trying to come up with recipes that I like, that my family likes, that are actually so good that I want to share them with you. I’m inspired by the comfort foods of my childhood. No, these AIP versions are not the same as what Grandma made, but they can still be delicious. I want to see a picture of a meal in an AIP cookbook or on an AIP blog and think it looks so good that I just have to cook it. That’s wha
t I want to give you.
I am not an AIP expert. I do have a Master’s of Science degree in Physiology from North Carolina State University, so have a pretty good understanding of the workings of the human body. I worked in the medical technology and medical research industries before staying home with my kids. But I am NOT a certified nutritionist or a doctor. I’ll refer you often to the likes of Sarah Ballantyne at http://www.thepaleomom.com, Katie of http://www.wellnessmama.com, Chris Kresser at http://www.chriskresser.com or Mickey Trescott of http://www.autoimmune-pal
o.com and many others whom I feel are much more expert than I.
The goal of this blog is to help you, even if you don’t know how or don’t like to cook, realiz
that you can. That you can heal your body through food. If you have embraced AIP or even just plain old paleo, you have likely realized that there is no more “semi-homemade” cooking, no more box mixes or eating out whenever you feel like it. Most everything needs to be from scratch, made with real, whole foods. It is daunting. I won’t mince words about that. But it is not impossible.
If you learn something from reading this blog, whether it’s a recipe, a new ingredient, a new technique or just receive the encouragement or giggles you need to get to the end of your busy day, then I’ll feel successful.
So welcome. I hope you will find recipes here that will appeal to you and your family as well. I hope you will find comfort in knowing that you are not the only one dealing with Crohns, or bucking the standard medical system, or dealing with unruly kids, be they homeschooled or not. Please ask questions in the comments section of each post and I’ll do my best to answer each one. I’d love to get to know you.
If you want to read more about my health story, click here.