Friday, March 24, 2017

Chili Night!


Last night was chili night! I made my Slow Cooker Chili and it was great comfort food with some tortilla chips to dip with!


I woke up to more snow today! Boo hoo hoo hoo...it's such an eye opener how badly my mood is affected by the March weather. I mean, I know I have some form of Seasonal Affective Disorder because I have terrible cabin fever and low moods after January until about April. I'm quite sure that once I can be outdoors most of the day, things will get better. Ever notice that colour seems to disappear during a winter snowstorm?


I won't go into detail, but lately my anxiety disorder has been slightly out of control, so I'm trying something new. I ordered this book today and I hope it offers something to help me. I already know some foods that trigger the anxiety, like processed sugars and processed foods, high sodium and too much caffeine; and I avoid them. But maybe adding some new foods daily will help too, or just changing something up...I'm open to trying new things :)


I'm happy to say that I have Alex's support 100%. He wants to help me feel better too, it feels good to know I can rely on him. I used to go through these hard times alone and now I just have to go to him for all the hugs I want. Jack too :)


I was looking through my summer photos this morning and I CAN'T WAIT to have this hot sunny weather again!

I do love all of our seasons here, but winter always feels too long for me. How do you get through winter? Is it as tough on you as it is on me? I'm trying to find ways to enjoy it more, but I'm stumped right now! Grin and bear it. :)

27 comments:

Sunnybrook Farm said...

Maybe you need to turn on some lights to give you the illusion of more daylight, it works for chickens.
That chili looks wonderful, I love chili but don't make it look that good. I did make it one time and put corn bread batter on top and baked it, kind of made a chili pot pie out of it I guess.

Mama Pea said...

Although I know many people who are affected by S.A.D., I'm very fortunate to not have to deal with it. I always think it's that lazy gal inside me that loves the slower pace of winter . . . and I could easily deal with it being even longer. I do notice that I am not as slow moving on a sunny day (versus gray day) in winter though. Guess it kinda charges my batteries even though I might not be outdoors.

I totally believe the food (maybe more so the non-food!) we put in our bodies affects us both physically and mentally so that new book you have could offer some really good things to try. I admire the way you admit to your anxieties and face them head on. And how wonderful to have your very supportive family (Alex and the furry creatures) behind you all the way.

MrsDuncanMahogany said...

Hi Rain! I get SAD in January and my mood does not improve until about mid March. My former boss purchased SAD lights for our department. Mine is on full tilt in January but does it improve my mood? Not really. However, it does increase my energy. I could sleep for England January and February so there's a little bit of joy in it. For me its the dark nights. I cannot get past how incredibly tired I get once we get so dark at 4:30 p.m. Good luck with the new foods...let me know how it goes. I would certainly try that as well, my son to.

The chili looks GOOD!!! We sometimes have ours with tortilla chips too. Or homemade bread, toast too! Whatever tickles the fancy of the day!

Although I am not a fan of hot, hot weather, I do like summer. I prefer fall when its cooler out but you can still enjoy outside without boots and a parka. I really don't like winter. :) We can have bad mosquitoes here in the summer so it makes sitting outside a challenge. I am on the no spray zone for malathion in our neighborhood so I am sure our neighbors don't like the fact that someone in the area has requested no spray. Our city is apparently using up their malathion stores and will not use it once all gone. FINALLY. Nasty, cancer causing stuff. I garden organic and don't want that junk on my vegetables!!

Have a good evening! I have no clue what to make for supper (yet again) so I need to buckle down and get a weekly menu up and running.

Dianna

jaz@octoberfarm said...

i'm the opposite! i get sad when it warms up and gets sunny. i'm making an effort to embrace all seasons though it's tough. i should live in a cave!

Goatldi said...

yup again I defer to Mama Pea. I have never had that issue. But please don't take that to mean I have no issues, Oh issues where art thee let me count the ways. A gal and I at the Blue Iris were just discussing this the other day.

She " I too have problems but I don't always talk about them because I don't want to appear to whine." To that I said " I think if we were able to open up on an emotional level to others we would have a more dependent society". Too many of us grew up in families who were far more concerned about not airing the dirty laundry then growing healthy family members or with families that went by the creed we take care of our own, ah but did we?

How many folks are out there so sure that they are the only ones experiencing the "issues" they are. How much more do we isolate each other by not sharing? Seems to me like the goal in so many folks life is to be normal. Well as lofty as that goal is it doesn't exist. Normal is a setting on a washing machine and Ward, June, Wally and the Bev don't and never have lived there. So why do we aspire to be something that no one can define?
I love winter I could live there 9 out of 12 months a year. I get cranky in the summer too hot, can't take off enough to be comfortable. All this from a girl who spent the majority of her life in central California in summers where the low was 75 at 5 AM and hot streaks were four or more weeks of a balmy 113 daily.

My ideal would be a light breeze and lows of 50's nights and highs of no more than 85. That would be summer . Winter would be snow, rain and fires in the hot stove or fire place. I don't know how I ended up this way but it is me.

I do agree that you are what you eat. But you are also how you live. And if you spend your life in an environment that drives you nuts you are likely to end up stressed into some pretty nasty diseases. Remember cancer isn't always caused by toxins. At least not physical ones. I have known some folks who have lived a life so organic and clean it makes me look like a junk food junkie. And they ended up dying from and illness that was fueled by the way they lived emotionally.

Ok enough. Best of luck to you my dear for being proactive that is half the battle. Kiss the pups and let me know when it is Chili night again as it will take a couple of days to get there.

Rain said...

Hi Gill :) Chili pot pie sounds great! I have so much light in my cottage all the time. I can't live in the dark! But we're past daylight savings so things are getting better. I think it's just the lagging snow that makes my mood dampen more.

Rain said...

Thanks Mama Pea :)) I've always been in the mindframe that I need to cope with this alone because most people don't really understand that anxiety attacks are out of my control. They think I can just think my way out of it, which in theory might work, but once the body feels fight or flight...that's it! I feel lucky that Alex gets it and he's really good with me when I need him. I also think the non-food especially (and that includes things labeled as FOOD) affects our health a lot. We may eat a rich diet, but there is very little chemically altered food in there, it's all as natural as I can make it or buy it! I'm looking forward to the book!

Rain said...

Hi Dianna :)) I tried those lights too about 10 years ago and really WANTED them to work, but I didn't feel any improvement at all in my mood. I didn't feel extra energy either, but I'm glad you get something out of it. I'll keep my blog updated with the suggestions, my efforts and the results!

The chili is SO good...but it's too easy to eat a lot of it in one sitting lol!

I have a friend who lives up near Dryden and she told me horror stories about the mosquitoes and black flies up there. I imagine you have the same suffering in the summer! It's bad here, but we take all the necessary precautions. Head nets, lots of good repellent and screened-in porches!! Can't avoid the bites though! I see your point about the spraying, I'm sure lots of people want that, but if I were gardening and the risk of it got into my stuff, I'd request no spray as well. There are enough pesticides and frankly who-knows-what in the food we buy now. I dream of the day when I don't need to go grocery shopping anymore but for essentials and pantry items! I do love the summer though, I told Alex that I'd live in my bathing suit all year round if I could! Fall is nice though, NO BUGS!!!

Rain said...

Hi Joyce :) I do try to embrace all the seasons as well and learn from what they teach me. But I would rather live in summer than winter. If winter weren't so long I'd be okay. A cave sounds divine...with a sun roof! :)

Rain said...

Hi Goatldi :)) Yes, I was brought up to shut up basically. I kept my fears and pain so quiet that it nearly killed me back in 2003. There's only so much the mind and body can handle before it decides to start breaking down. It was even very difficult for me to open up in therapy when I had the opportunity to go! But now, I'm an open book because I can't keep anything inside or I go nuts! Normal for me is just not feeling scared most of the time for no apparent reason! I can't be June Cleaver, that's for darn sure!

I think that, as you mention, if I were in an area that didn't drive me nuts, I might be doing okay during the winter! It's hard to feel locked inside because of crazy tourists, but we are making the best of our situation.

Thanks for your comment, truly, I'm happy to read about others' experiences and how they cope or like the winter! I'll sound the cow bell next chili night ;)

Mama Pea said...

Amen, Goatldi, Amen!!! I so agree with everything you've said. And well put, too.

Leigh said...

That chili looks SO good! Wow, I wish my Dan liked chili, but I may try to make and can some for at least myself. :)

Do review the book when you read it and let us know what they say. Sounds like good information for sure.

Toirdhealbheach Beucail said...

Summer we live now is hard for me. We can get up to 32-27 C and with the humidity there is absolutely nothing you want to be doing outside. I much prefer winter; then again, I have never lived where it snows so I am a bit biased.

Beyond avoiding processed foods (probably a good idea, although I have no science to back that up), have tried something natural like St. John's Wort? Kymber recommended to me and I have tried it on occasion. I am not sure that it helped, but at least it did no harm.

Kristina said...

Winter time is when I dig into deep cleaning, read books, and work a lot more on handiwork. It's when I plan my homemade gifts for next Christmas too. Summer just gets so crazy busy with my garden(s).

Rachel said...

I suffer from very similar anxiety. I know I need to make myself eat better, but it's so hard when I'm depressed! Hopefully the weather will motivate me a bit as spring arrives. The chili looks delicious.

Rain said...

I agree, very well put! :)

Rain said...

Hi Leigh :)) Thanks! I think it would make a good freezer meal. Too bad Dan doesn't like it! I make mine with no spices because we have sensitive stomachs, but the flavours are awesome! I'll write about the book for sure, and how I use the suggestions because anyone out there who has anxiety is usually frustrated and looking for help and I'm happy to share it!

Rain said...

Hi Toirdhealbheach :)) I have used St-John's Wort in the past and it did help with depression, I love the stuff. But it interacts with a med I take so I can't take it anymore sadly! I've also tried Passionflower, which I find helpful but then, maybe not...I took it for years and I always thought it probably worked in the background but lately nothing is really working. Valerian made my heart race, that's another one for anxiety. Over the years, when I got off pharmaceuticals, I tried lots of different natural remedies, I saw a Naturopath and her remedies worked, but only in the short term.

Well, the snow is really pretty and I do love the first few months of winter. A 'white Christmas-time' can't be beat! It's just the cabin fever I think. I downloaded a few books I found and (though I already knew this but 'forgot'), boredom is the worst cause of anxiety. I know that the last few weeks, I've been having issues with that, and that's when the anxiety got worse.

Rain said...

Hi Kristina :)) I'd love to be able to use my time in winter well, I need to find that motivation, because once the snow starts melting and I can be outside for hours, I'm fine.

Rain said...

Hi Rachel! :) I'm sorry you go through that too. My biggest problem is if I can't reverse/manage the anxiety it inevitably always turns into a full-blown panic attack. Alex always asks me "what's making you scared?" and my usual answer it a desperate "I don't know", because I really don't. It's not logical and I hate it! I hope that the book gives me some good tips.

kymber said...

Rain - i left a comment on one of TB's posts (he left a comment above) and i told him to promise himself one half hour a day.....to sit. no reading, no writing, no thinking....just sit. sit with a dog on the floor and pet him. or sit at the kitchen table. it works best when you can sit outside. just sit. and breathe. close your eyes. thank the Lord, the Universe, the Sun, the Moon, the Ocean - whatever - just sit and be thankful. and grateful. do this especially if you feel especially anxious or panicked. just breathe. and allow yourself to fill with grace.

....and love that chili! but we can no longer have dairy in ours. we dropped dairy and gluten and are feeling better for it. this book might teach you about eliminating foods. it's gonna hurt - when we dropped dairy we went through 3 solid weeks of withdrawal...it was gawd-awful. especially for dairy fanatics like us! but it has done us a world of good.

also - i have just read 2 books and a whole pile of websites about progesterone cream. i got it yesterday evening and tried some this morning. i am supposed to rub some on again tonight. can't say i feel any changes yet but i have only had one dose. researching it more and trying to find the best. if you are interested i can update to you in a week to see if there are any real changes happening.

when you get that anxious/scared feeling - think about the absolute beauty of knowing that people out there in the world care about you - care deeply even though it's over the internet. the the internet is a horrible place of pornography and human trafficking - BUT it's also a beautiful place filled with like-minded people that actually care about others, think about others throughout their day and check in on others to make sure that they are safe and well. that's a pretty powerful tool.

sending much love. your friend,
kymber

Rain said...

Hi Kymber! :) The sitting still is a very good tool in my arsenal. I call it my "Nature therapy". I usually just sit on the porch and enjoy the yard. That's when I find it most relaxing :) Let me know about the progesterone cream, really. I'm getting frustrating with the night sweats and hot flashes!

You know, the people I'm the most comfortable with are the virtual friends here. I've never felt a connection too much with "real life" people except Alex really. Everyone else who I've ever had that connection with, I met online. :)

I know what you went through with dairy! I went vegan-gluten-free-sugar-free for a year, cold turkey. I did this because a quack told me that my IBS was incurable. Guess what? It wasn't. And gladly cheese isn't the culprit! Then I'd have serious doubts about humanity and evolution lol...

Sam I Am...... said...

I went through a really tough time about 20 years ago or so....picture Mrs. Job from the Bible....lost my animals, husband, family, career and health.....I started journaling every morning. I would make a cup of coffee, go back to bed and write 2 full notebook pages (some days more)...I wrote everything I was feeling on those pages, then I would write 10 things I was grateful for and then a written prayer. I am still doing it although my pages are now filled with joy and happiness and gratitude for my life as it is. Writing in that way to God basically, when I had no one to talk to and no friends or family was what saved me and now there is really nothing that could bring me down. I fear nothing really....oh my fear of heights is still there! LOL! But fear of death, illness, loss of any kind is not an issue. I've lost it all and I am here to tell you it was the best thing that ever happened to me. I view rejection as protection and/or direction as I've said before. I think our natural state is healthy and happy and if we're not then we need to sit down and figure out why. I think something is not right in your life but only you can figure out what that is. Sometimes people don't want to change because they get a certain benefit or attention from staying on the same path. If I ever feel sorry for myself I just think of all the people in the world who are worse off than me and that snaps me right out of it. Remember 'to thine own self be true'.....everyone else is taken! I hope you heal and are able to live the life you were meant to live. Hugs~Sam

Rain said...

Thanks for sharing Sam :) xx I've had a sorted past as well and I know that all of that has made me into the person I am today, anxiety and all - what a package! :) I do the same as you!!! I journal every day, no exception, and I have a gratitude list that I put at the end of my journal every day too. I find that it keeps everything on a positive note. There are traumas from my past that I know are working hard to scare me all the time, I have nightmares a few times a week, but I keep working at healing, staying positive and being grateful! You know what is twisted? I don't fear death. I don't have any "legitimate" fears for lack of better wording. But when the panic starts, that's when I fear I'm dying. It's backwards. That's why I always say there is no logic to it. My body thinks I'm in danger, but I'm not, so I'm trying everything I can to help myself out!

Goatldi said...

Thank you ladies. I wish your agreement wasn't needed and the cycle was broken. If we each share a little bit it is a beginning to an end.

Deena said...

I went thru severe anxiety attacks in my early 20's. It was so tough to get thru, nobody really understood what I was going thru. I read a book called "The Panic Attack Recovery Book" and it really helped me... I think what we eat has a huge affect on our bodies, and all the preservatives and additives wreck our systems. I hope you feel better soon. I think pets really help to calm ones soul. xo

Deena from Texas

Rain said...

Hi Deena :))) Thank you for sharing that! It's SO TRUE...I always feel so misunderstood! I know my boyfriend tries really hard, and I love him dearly, but if you haven't been through it, you just don't know...I'm sure you can agree :) Thanks for the book suggestion, I'll look it up. And you are very right about the pets...after my 19-year old pug passed away in 2014, it was a LONG year without a dog in my life. We did have 2 cats, but for me, a dog is a gift for the spirit...well, within a few months we had three dogs in 2015 and it's made a huge difference!!! xx