The Free Motion Quilting Project: Puke Runneth Over

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Puke Runneth Over

Yep, it's official: we've been hit with an all-mighty stomach virus.

Currently both James and Josh are down for the count. This is James's first experience with throwing up, which is no fun for anyone involved.

So if I'm a bit MIA this week, you know where I am: Either holding a hand, bringing juice, or cleaning up!

By the way, whenever this bug does pass us, I've decided to go on a diet.

No, stop freaking out, I'm not dieting to lose weight! While dropping 5 pounds wouldn't kill me, that's not the intended purpose of dieting for me.

Maybe I should call it "lifestyle food restriction" instead, but that's just a mouthful when I'm really just on a diet.

I've found that my emotional ups and downs usually correspond with how well, or how bad, I'm eating.

I've known this for a long time, since college in fact, when I realized that 3 candy bars a day definitely doesn't keep the doctor away. Quite the opposite in fact!

Depressed and confused by all the conflicting things I was experiencing at the time, I went on a major diet overhaul and cut out all sugar, carbs, and processed foods from my diet.

I did lose a lot of weight, but I also gained a very clear understand for how interlinked my mood and attitude is with the foods I eat.

Josh and I have periodically dieted together and we even did a video blog on it last summer.

Way back in July before this blog ever started, Josh and I went on a 21 day diet and detox developed by my Father-in-Law, Chet Day.

Again, my reasoning for the diet was not to lose weigh (though I did lose 10 lbs), but to feel better and get focused about what I wanted. The inspiration for this blog really came after the experience of making videos every day and realizing that I would love to do the same thing with quilting.

But living permanently on a diet like that is not really feasible. It's an excellent detox diet to clean your body out and start over from square one, but not something that I would be willing to live on.

So instead I'm going to try this new Paleo diet, which is based upon what we think our hunter/gatherer ancestors lived on thousands of years ago: meat, vegetables, and fruits.

The great thing about this diet is I could see myself living on it permanently. Trust me, I don't have the makings of a radical vegan or vegetarian within me (no offense to those who are!)

I like meat and eggs too much for that, which is funny because when most people meet me, they assume I'm a vegetarian! Weird...

With this diet the major cut will be processed foods. Anything and everything that comes in a package, wrapper, or bag has to go. It looks like I won't be finishing my 6 boxes of girl scout cookies anytime soon...

This diet also cuts out sugar and alcohol, two vices that make up way too much of my current diet.

What do I hope to accomplish by living on a food restricted diet?

Mostly stability. Vegging out on Cheetoes and Coke only makes me feel bad, and those bad feelings effect my productivity and self esteem.

No, not all life is about being productive, but I find if I can't enjoy my work, the rest of my life, and family suffers for it.

It's also a nice excuse to slow down a bit and take life easier. What's the rush? Why do I always feel like I'm running behind? It's just all in my head!

So that's what I'm planning to start this week. Hopefully this stomach flu will pass me by. James is already showing good signs of recovery and is asking for applesauce and bananas.

We'll see if I'm not cleaning them up again later...

Let's go quilt (or veg out on the couch and stitch binding)!

Leah Day


  1. the way you eat is a 'diet' - so good for you wanting to make the foods you eat work for you. People forget, food is medicine. We eat things when we are ill to help get us better, see the connection???? so if you eat everyday, to keep yourself healthy and sane (yes, I eat sugar and I can go off the wall!!! didn't realize this till I cut sugar out of my diet!!!!) it is just the smart thing to do. And if by changing your diet, you loose weight, it's just your body's way of celebrating!!! It has been giving what it needs/wants to keep it movin' and shaking and it's going to get rid of what it doesn't need - all the extra fat stores!!!

    Here is to eating with a purpose - the celebrating all the diffenent choices we have eating healthier!! I could go vegaetarian, but I like my fish and chicken to much!!! I don't think I could go vegan, I don't want that many restrictions on my food choices!!!

    Hope that lovely bug leaves your house very soon, and you all are well rested and healthy for the coming week.

  2. Sorry to hear about your family with the flu, but if you want to get rid of those Girl Scout Cookies I would be happy to accept them :-)


  3. Oh you poor thing- stomach bugs are horrid, and cleaning up after them is even horrider (??). I hope its done with quickly.
    The diet you mention was forced on my sister and I just over ten years ago when we both became suddenly ill (different causes) and then intolerant to many cereals, grains, and dairy. We refer to it as the 'stone age yoke'! and it works- it would work even better if bars of chocolate didn't accidently fall into the shopping trolley...its not so hard to stick to, but you have to allow extra time for preparing meals and sometimes on a busy day that is my undoing.

  4. I'm sorry about the flu bug invading your house.

    I have been eating a "no quickie processed" food plan and keeping a food journal of everything that goes in my "food hole" for about 2 1/2 months now. It is amazing how much better I am feeling, and yes it takes a little more time for plannning.

    An added benefit to this kind of eating, is my grocery bill has been reduced. Quick, easy "microwave frozen" foods are more expensive. Read the ingredients on these foods. If I dont' recognize it or can pronounce it.......I'm NOT GONNA eat it!

    Years ago we ate this way..veggies, fruit, meat, eggs, dairy, whole grains...simple really when you think of it.

    Congratulations on your decision.

  5. Good for you! I've been making a conscious effort to drastically reduce the processed foods we eat, and I do see a difference. It can be difficult to remind ourselves to slow down and take things easier - making more of the food you eat from scratch does take time, but the results are worth it. I'm not saying I'm perfect at this, or that I ever will be, because I also believe in everything in moderation, but it is definitely the way to go.
    I do hope Josh and James are better soon, and you manage to pass this one by!

  6. You poor dear. I will never forget the first time my first born tossed his cookies. Oh dear. It was the middle of the night no less and I just looked at my husband and all I could think to say was, "oh my god. I've never cleaned up anyone else's puke. At least not sober."
    Good luck!
    And thank you for sharing about your food choices. I just picked up Michael Pollen's Food Rules, a super cute, funny little book with about 70 little rules to live by. Things like, "don't eat cereal that changes the color of your milk." and others that are equally obvious, but some that are phrased in such a way that a person could learn to live with them permanently. Like "treat treats as treats".
    Have fun with that! It's amazing how much better we feel when we fuel ourselves properly!

  7. Eat local! I'm a local producer in Iowa and a good website to find local food is It will force you to eat foods not processed as highly, will help your local economy, and is better for your health! Not to mention, local food usually tastes better. I switched to local foods as much as possible (nobody's perfect and not everything's available) and it really improved our diets and forces me to cook more. I follow your blog every day and love your free motion designs!

  8. I hope everyone recovers from that nasty bug quickly.
    Your diet plan sounds good and is something that I need to do as well. Sadly, I am a carb addict and it will be hard to break that habit.
    Love your blog. I followed a blog buddy over here.

  9. I enjoy You blog, My family is going through the stomach virus also, I've done had it and my husband has not got it yet, all but 3 of my grandchildren has had it. Good luck on your dieting, Stay healthy! HAPPY QUILTING!

  10. Sorry to hear about the bug. Hope all are better soon.

    Good luck with the diet. My nephew asked me to read Barbara Kingsolver's "Animal, Vegetable, Miracle" a while back. Last year I increased my garden size and canned and froze a bunch of produce. Eating right works. I didn't lose any weight though.

  11. Ah, the stomach and the head are connected, especially in times of stress and too much work! I have been training for a marathon so that I can eat properly and feel good! I've already lost quite a bit of weight and am feeling so much better. The process foods are what I am trying to cut out and I hope to one day have kitchen cupboards without any! I hope that you blog about your experience even though this is mainly a quilting blog.

  12. I'm sorry about the flu! I used to hate it when we all got sick at once.

    Smart diet choice, though-- it'll really help you develop more immunity from illnesses, too. Don't give up if you cheat once in a while. Just say, Oops! and keep going. Eventually, you'll be able to follow it more often than not and you'll feel a lot better.

  13. oh I so know how much NOT fun you are having as my 2 year old son had yuck out both ends for 12 days straight just a couple weeks ago. :(

    My advice is to find an old quilt that has been washed a dozen times before and keep it near by your son - as if he pukes then it's easier to hit the quilt than try and rush to the toilet.. and cleaning up is a lot faster when you can toss it into the washer instead of having to go get the Resolve carpet cleaner. Cleaning up the YUCK makes me about sick smelling it! Actually I alternated between 2 quilts one washing/drying and the other near us...

    good luck - I hope your guys are over it soon!

    Love from Texas! ~bonnie


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