kefir day 6

Feeling pretty healthy, probably mostly due to no alcohol though! And eating really well – superfood bread this morning with 1/2 avocado and 2 boiled eggs.

Have to say that I have a bit of the runs today, as we were warned about by Shann at Chuckling Goat…otherwise I haven’t noticed any differences. But I’ve been reading about all the vitamins and minerals that I’m getting so I feel quite smug!

My auntie used to tell us when we were little about the little men who lived in our stomachs. They all have shovels and are busy moving the food to where it needs to go all day. Some things are really hard to move – rubbish foods like crisps and chocolate (or eating too much) slow them right down and that’s why you get a tummy ache or feel tired. This explanation seemed to make perfect sense to me and I believed in those little men until I was in high school and learned a bit more about biology! So the idea of ‘the Whos in Whosville‘ that Shann uses to explain the microbiome in the gut just makes even more sense. Instead of ‘raining death’ down on my little men (and women) with shit like booze and processed carbs, I’m going to try very hard to give them things that make them leap for joy, like avocados, oats and the gorgeous local heather honey I got last week (not with the kefir, of course, as they cancel each other out).

It also makes me wonder what would be the best food for puppydogs, as I often thought about a homemade diet for my girl, but was too scared to change her diet too much when she was old. Fish, meat, carrots, grains, a bit of oil, glucosamine. Not that there will be another one anytime soon.

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kefir diary

I went to the Chuckling Goat open day on Saturday to see the farm and goats and to get some more of their lovely soap. I ended up buying a lot more than that!

Since my little Furtle went I have been feeling awful in every way, so maybe the kefir sounded like a miracle cure to me. But everything that Shann said made sense, and I hope that my skin will be better, my energy and mood improved, and that it’ll help my asthma, constant thrush and recurring hives (I’m a treat!).

It was fascinating to see the grains (more like pale scrambled egg) that is the live culture, and I quite like the taste of it fermented in goat’s milk. I’m drinking a third of a pint every morning. Mum is too – she’s had some adverse reactions, but so far I haven’t. But then, I do eat clean most of the time (just need to cut out the beer – the  less sugar the better with this).

I did wonder how getting up and glugging it at 6.30am then doing an hour’s (hard) training would work, but apart from a little burping in the cardio section it seems to be okay!

So no crisps, white potatoes (except the odd new potato), chips, refined sugar in anything, processed carbs like white pasta and rice, no beer/cider (I have had a couple of G&Ts though!) and generally trying to eat greens, good fats and grains. I’m doing okay so far but the weekend is always a toughie…and the chip bucket at work, especially when I am exhausted.

Basically I am trying to stick to my routine to get through a difficult time, and hope that this will give me an extra boost. If I think it’s worked, I’ll probably do a couple of courses a year, or even start making it (but they do say that’s really tough).

What a wonderful place to have just up the road…I wonder if they need a writer…or anything else.

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beach time

green ankletI wish I had more time to spend on the beach! I do most of my training programme on there at the moment, and walk the dog, but oh for a few days sunbathing, swimming and reading good books.

The market is still going well, and people who have booked some time for all of the above are turning up in increasing numbers.

One family who bought lots of stuff last year came again and bought more! I had a request for an anklet which I was happy to make up, then I decided to make more for the stall. I love anklets! The above is the custom ordered one, a green bead charm and mermaid, and below is a silver anchor, light blue seaglass and silver chain, £10. See it on Etsy.

blue anklet

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what a colour

green blue seaglassThis is a really unusual colour – I don’t think I’ve ever seen this kind of deep green-blue before. It’s paired with a simple silver anchor and silver 16″ chain. I love it…it might not make it onto the stall!

 

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long and swingy

long necklaces with shells seaglass potteryI had forgotten I bought some long chains – had fun yesterday in a quiet spot at the Llangrannog Local Producers Market making these. Left is sea pottery and green seaglass, right is a shell fragment with a mermaid resting on it.

Thanks to the lovely Kerry from Beachcomber Jewellery for the gift boxes!

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making beautiful things

ring

I made this! My first ring ever and I know there will be many, many more (when I can afford the tools!). This is a simple silver band with the co-ordinates of my favourite beach on it. I couldn’t believe (still can’t) that I made it myself, but anyone could do it with the right tools and such good instruction.

 

I went to a wonderful workshop taught by Rose Wood in her gorgeous little workshop in Drefach Felindre (I have serious craft space envy). The workshops are £35 and the silver I used cost only £7.20. I learned so, so much, way more than just how to make a ring, and her attention to every little detail of the day and her work is amazing. She is also doing earring and pendant workshops this summer.

 

 

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Thanks bro for the birthday present! I was simply in heaven from start to finish.

a week off

Beach camp

Beach camp

I’ve had a week off the office job, and I’m using the time to finish the corrections on my PhD thesis, but it’s also time to have some fun! I’ve missed being in the sea, a lot, so I decided to have a beach day even though it’s not really quite warm enough. However, with some planning it’s do-able, especially as I live so close to the beach.

I put on some warm and comfy gear, including my new t-shirt and jacket from Australian surf brand ‘Afends‘. Loving this stuff! I haven’t owned a denim jacket since the 80s, and with jeans, crazy pattern t-shirt and my beach bag, I fluffed up my hair and felt like a teenager again! If you like their gear, you can get a 20% discount with the code BLOG20!

I took myself, my books (Aussie too) and my dog over to Cilborth beach, built a little fire and pretended it’s summer already. No surf here just yet, but I have hopes for the rest of the weekend…

cilborth beach

Cilborth sunshine

 

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clean eating…hmm

brocc-breadI’m all for clean eating, and trying new things, but sometimes things disappoint! Two recipes today: Sweet Potato Brownies and Broccoli Bread.

I won’t even post a pic of the brownies as they look rubbish and taste of, well, sweet potato and dates, which is their main ingredients. I think cacao nibs is not the same as cacao powder (which was too expensive for me!). And medjool dates weren’t available in my health food store. Try again, maybe.

However, I have discovered that dates smeared with nut butter is rather nice.

The Broccoli Bread wasn’t great on its own, but sliced thin with plenty of tasty topping (butter, Marmite and eggs!!) I am a convert!

Bootcamp

fat burn revolution bookHaving finished a second round of Challenge XXX (a 30-day ass-kicking round of workouts) I’m into a ‘recovery’ phase. Ha! With Julia Buckley as my PT, this does not mean not sweating!

I just did the second of five Bootcamp for Beginners workouts that she’s just put up on YouTube (with extended versions for members of her site) and it was tough. Arms, shoulders, chest and abs today. We always do abs, every day, and those static exercises (“You’re just sitting there” — trust me I’m not) are killer.

I’ve tried Slimming World, I’ve tried Insanity, various fad diets, the gym, callanetics, running 20 miles a week or more, etc. etc. — didn’t make that much difference, and if it did it wasn’t sustainable. Julia’s training works. It’s bloody hard, and it takes a lifestyle change, but clean eating ‘mostly mostly’, training with weights and high intensity interval (cardio) training 4-5 days a week has got me superfit (mentally and physically stronger), ready for the waves when they come back.

Because that’s why I’m doing it — for the glorious surf I’m sure is on its way. Oh, and to fit into jeans that have been at the bottom of the jeans box for a long, long time.

The first half of all the workouts are free. If you want more, pay £28 a month and you’ll get all the workouts (so, so many) and loads of support as well.

I’m not being paid to say this, by the way!

Bring on the spring and summer waves…(and winter somewhere hot!)

eclipse

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I went for a run yesterday (after a 45 minute cardio session with Julia, I must be mad!), all the way up to Pen Dinas Lochtyn, where I was in 1999 for the last solar eclipse. We were lucky to have sun, although it was hazy, and my iPhone lens did some quite funky stuff which I don’t understand but which allowed me to see the moon quite clearly. Spring solstice, solar eclipse, new moon and 5.5m spring tides – awesome day. I was hoping for some surf, but things weren’t quite that perfect!

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The moon on the ground!

 

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