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  1. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Thanks - he's delighted. He's to go for an interview with the Headmaster on Monday so he should find out then if there's anyone he knows in his form class. Most of his close school friends chose not to sit the exams so they won't be going to the same school. He's a very sociable kid though so I've no doubt he'll make friends quickly enough. He's not gone back to gymnastics.... I think he enjoyed having the time to actually play with his friends and not have to rush to get homeworks done/eat dinner etc so he could get to training. He took up Cross Country running with the school and he's been doing pretty good at that, and it doesn't eat into his free time - he's keen to trial for that at the new school. They're big into sports there & I can see him getting involved in a whole lot more.
    My sister is still in hospital and looks to be staying in for another 6wk stint. Her white blood cell count is still rising, although she's in good spirits, looks well, her appetite is slowly coming back & the vomitting has settled. Not sure what the meds are doing to her head though as she goes through phases of talking complete nonsense & hallucinating!
  2. Like
    J9er got a reaction from jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    How sad, about your sister. Hope she turns a corner soon. Just awful for her to be so sick for so long.  
    Thanks for the update, have been wondering how you've been. I went to start typing this comment and realized I had replied to you a while back but never hit the reply button and there was my reply, still sitting there today....oops! 
    Congrats to your son for getting into school. He worked so hard for that! Has he or will he start back at his gymnastics? 
  3. Like
    J9er got a reaction from HiD in Anyone done a Whole30 with a large family?   
    First of all, you are amazing!! What an awesome thing to do for your family. What about using your slow cooker? I have no experience cooking for that many people, but I do lots of prepping, to spend less time in the kitchen.
    I make huge batches of food because I dehydrate leftovers for backpacking trips and using my slow cooker has saved me. You could aim to have something in there every time you're prepping. I buy large pork shoulders and make Nom Nom Paleo's kahlua pig, or Mel Joulwan's chocolate chili. Just google whole30 slow cooker, and you may get some ideas. A lot of people are starting to use pressure cookers more too, and there are tons of pressure cooker recipes out there. Mel Joulwan's website also has a great batch cooking guide. Maybe you could try that, on a larger scale? Just google Mel Joulwan weekly cook up.
    I don't know if using frozen vegetables is an option for you? I'm not the hugest fan, but I use them to send in my husband's lunch because he doesn't mind, or if I really just don't feel like prepping. Even if you used them for the occasional meal it would help save time.
    As for fat, drizzle coconut oil or olive on the food before serving, make mayo, dollops of coconut cream, there are tons of sauces you can make, but I imagine you want to get away from making more things!
  4. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Thank you.... yes..... my head has been kind of elsewhere....
    My sister is back in hospital and not doing great at all. She's back having the IV anti-biotics as the oral ones weren't agreeing with her at all (and she's had to try quite a variety!), the infection is back, and it's more severe & more widespread than before. Hopefully once her body has readjusted to the IV she'll settle down a bit but right now all she can do is sleep & vomit.
    We'd been having a spell of fab weather lately too which had me spending more time outdoors, but I woke today (on an unexpected day off) to rain & grey skies again - which kind of reflects my mood.
    Food wise I'm actually doing great. And training wise I've come on in leaps & bounds. The feral child got a place in his school of choice, & holidays are fast approaching, so if I could just see my sister's health improve a little then all would be well with the world...
  5. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Loosely Whole30 related in that death by non-communicable & CV diseases are right up there, and both can be/are related to nutrition, but I am LOVING this infographic, shown to me by my #firstborn, who found it interesting in terms of History (Ideaology related deaths).....

  6. Like
    J9er reacted to MeadowLily in 9 Belfast Bites   
    You can't have too many arrows in your quiver or too many strings for your bow. I've always wanted my own health food store but diabetes and food addictions, WLS, eating disorders...those could keep you busy for the rest of your life. WLS is common here but the lasting success, we haven't got the time.
    My recent question for the Universe, can you fully recover from food addiction and all of the above. I do know that removing the stomach doesn't fix the appetite control center which resides in the brain.
  7. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Thanks - I'm not sure just yet. I've enrolled for certification in Sport's Nutrition just because I think it will be good to have, but it's not really the direction I'd like to take. Having spent so much time here I'm keen to look at treating deficiences, auto immune disease, mental & eating disorders, type 2 diabetes etc with food. I need to find the right course though so I'm hoping the Sports Nutrition will keep my mind active in the mean time, and I've found a little taster webinar in Weight Loss Surgery which I'll take a look at over the next few weeks so that I have the info to hand - it's not something I'd consider recommending with my current knowledge but I'd like to know a bit more so that I have the research to hand. I started watching/listening last night and was shocked at how blase the lecturer was and this was an Irish lecturer where WLS really isn't common... so we'll see.
    I've also got Robb's book but haven't started reading it yet. A few of the folk who completed the HTK challenge have already started the 30day reset. Steph had a copy before it was officially released so she'd given us the heads up and actually passed her copy on to one of the women who was really struggling with food. I see Paleo Mom has one on pre-order too - Paleo Principles - I'm a big fan of hers so I may invest in that one too, although who knows when I'll actually get time to sit down & read either of them?! That was the one thing I loved about commuting by train - I was getting through so many books in those days...!!
    Anyway, back to work this morning after my lovely, refreshing week off.
    Awesome. Not.
  8. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Thank you @MeadowLily - it's been a long time coming!!
    And in other news I've *finally* found a locally made, grass-fed, ethically raised jerky/biltong type product that is Whole30 compliant!! Yassss!! (Although for me, being Post Whole30, it just needed to have no added nasties...)
  9. Like
    J9er reacted to MeadowLily in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Congratulations.  Certification with Distinction. Are we surprised, not at all. It will interesting to see where it takes you. I'm happy there's a scholar like you who'll be helping the masses with diabetes, eating disorders/dysmorphia and all of the rest of it. 
  10. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Banagher Glen, Co Londonderry

    Altnahullion Wind Farm, Limavady

  11. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   

    The Peace Bridge, Foyle, Derry City, Co Londonderry - created to link what were two very separate communites known as the Bogside & the Waterside during 'The Troubles'.
    The Gap of Mamore, Urris Mountains, Inishowen Peninsula, Co Donegal

    Port Noo, Inishowen Peninsula, Co Donegal

  12. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   

    The summit of Binevenagh, Co Londonderry

    Lake Binevenagh, Co Londonderry
  13. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   

    Rush hour - Mamore Hill, Urris Mountains, Co Donegal

    The Foyle Nature Trail, Co Londonderry
  14. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    So we're home, unpacked, washing done, and back to the proverbial porridge - not *actual* porridge, but you get the drift.... cooking, cleaning, ironing, chores.
    On our last day we took a long walk in a beautiful Glen, played Pooh sticks at the bridges, counted the various types of wild flowers & sat at the waterfall for a while before heading on to a Wind Farm which was on our route home.
    It's been a great little Easter break - time spent outdoors, quality time with my boys, a little sorting & tidying done around the house, a couple of decent training sessions, and then yesterday I got the good news that I [finally] achieved Certification as a Nutritionist having passed the exam with a Distinction. Now I'm looking to specialise a little so am on the hunt for an accredited provider so that I can follow my chosen path and eventually ditch the job that I detest so much.
    Anyway - the weekend is not over just yet, and the weather is mild so a little more gardening is in order....
    Drumree Bay, Co Donegal

    The path to Drumree Head, Co Donegal

  15. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Well, the first of the forest trails ended up being pretty much cliff side by the time we found the place recommended for parking. The fog was fairly thick but the views were still amazing although the heavy rain showers forced us back down to sea level again where we did a portion of the lough-side walk, looking up in the ditrection of the mountain we'd just abandoned - we covered about 10 miles in total though, so it was all good.
    The lough side walk was weirdly separated from the *actual* lough by a kind of a wind breaker excavated into the land, so the path was actually below sea level and was scattered with all kinds of shells which must be brought there at high tide or during adverse weather and which my youngest was more than happy to collect for some future craft project.
    As we walked along we had the lough on one side & a nature reserve on the other so we saw a good variety of birds & flowers; and then beyond that were numerous fields planted in a variety of produce, but most noticeably the yellow of the rapeseed contrasting against the various shades of green & brown where the fields are currently being rested.
    Right now we're getting warmed up (it was damp & windy for most of the day) and contemplating dinner - not sure what the boys have in mind but for me I'm thinking 'mixed grill'..............
  16. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    The wi-fi died in the room again last night and since we're not actually *in* the room a great deal I really can't justifying paying for an upgrade to premium so the photos will have to wait...
    Today will be spent either in forests or on the shores of the Lough Foyle - I'll see how the sky is looking once breakfast is done & dusted. I've two five mile walks in mind if we opt for forest/cliff top, and one ten mile loop if we opt for the lough..... Either way I'm expecting there to be even fewer people around which will make for a perfect day.
    But first I see eggs in my immediate future
  17. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    First stop today and, albeit a little grey, was very mild & peaceful.... This area is just within a part of the country known as  'Amazing Grace Land' which is where the writer of the afore-mentioned hymn, John Newton, was washed ashore in a storm before he found God and was the inspiration for his words.

  18. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    @Carlaccini - no one will sing the praises of God's own country higher than me!!! LOL It's a great trail, but was way too busy yesterday for my liking - I'd like to go back when the weather is a little warmer, and the crowds a little smaller, and we can happily stay at the summit a little longer.....
    Today we swapped the mountains for the sea and barely met a soul the entire day. Bliss.
    We followed the 'Wild Atlantic Way', which stretches from the North to the South of the island, and most of which we've covered previously, but we were graced today with empty roads & mild weather for this time of year. We left straight after breakfast (scrambled eggs, bacon, mushrooms, & grilled tomatoes for me; sausages, bacon, fried eggs & baked beans for the eldest; bacon, some baked beans, and a banana for the youngest), made a number of stop offs along the way, and were back in the hotel for late afternoon.
    We dandered across the Peace Bridge into the Maiden City, had a wander round the shops for the boys, then walked back to the Hotel in a (refreshing) shower of rain..... rested our weary feet for an hour or so in our room, missed the 'two for one' dinner deal in the restaurant <rolls eyes> and then it was fish all round for dinner, with the eldest ordering x2 (!!!) portions as he'd wprked up such an appetite!
    Tomorrow we're off on another mountain/forest trail so we're back now resting the legs again.
    More pics to follow......!!
  19. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   

    About third of the way up the steps looking back down the trail....
  20. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Legnabrocky Trail done!
    We were very lucky with the weather considering the heavy & sporadic rain we had here yesterday & thankfully dressed in & packed layers because it very quickly got hot hot hot on the way up... The trail is gravel about two thirds of the way with qute a few steep inclines before the boardwalk kicks in, and actually the section of boardwalk right up until the bottom of the steps (known as The Stairway To Heaven) is the hardest part - it's only wide enough for single file with a small drop down into the bog on either side in certain sections, and the sections were kind of uneven. With it being Easter Monday it was a lot busier than usual and so if anyone decided to stop or sit down to take a breather we had to wait until there was no-one on their way down to pass... Once we made it to the top (2182 ft) it was very marshy & rocky but we managed to manouevre our way to a flatish rock for a picnic lunch (I'd various ziplock bags of what was left in my fridge - roast chicken with a little tupperware of mayo, some cherry tomatoes, a stick of celery, a roasted red pepper, x2 dill pickles. The boys had the extra sausages I'd cooked yesterday with some veg/rice salad - seared in butter as they like to do in Greece - and some grapes). We'd have sat a while longer & taken in the amazing views if it wasn't so freaking cold & windy up there!!! So, layers were very swiftly put back on one by one & back down we headed in the direction of the car park.
    A little over two hours in the car found us at our Hotel, so we're all checked in, unpacked, rested & thinking about dinner.
    Wi-fi in the room is coming & going so I'll add a pic when it's playing ball & I can sync my phone with my photobucket account................................................
  21. Like
    J9er reacted to kirkor in Sugar sugar everywhere   
    That's the premise of the movie That Sugar Film -- http://thatsugarfilm.com/ -- he makes a point to eat stuff that is promoted as healthy like yogurt, smoothies, etc.
  22. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Mac and Cheese - it is YEARS since I had that!!!!
    We've camped before at this time of year (well, Glamped in little wooden pods) but there was no real fun in it. As soon as the sun falls (if it makes an appearance!) you have to go inside, and for me part of the fun of camping is sitting outside looking at the stars, so we're staying in a Hotel and using that as our base. We're actually headed in the opposite direction on our way there to do Legnabrocky Trail in the Cuilcagh Mountains. It's a part of the Marble Arch Geopark in County Fermanagh, and the top section to the summit has been laid in board-walk which I thought would make it a little easier for the boys, although there are A LOT of steps - they call it the Stairway to Heaven so I'm hoping the views will be worth it. In fact I'm just hoping for a clear day right now!! It's about a 2hr drive there from home, and then another 2hr drive from there to where we're staying (kind of in a V shape - if we drove direct to the Hotel it would also be 2hrs) so there should be a good nights sleep that night!
    My sister's situation is a little complicated. She is the only person in Ireland with the type of infection that she has. The samples taken from her lungs all have to be sent to England for cultivating. The ABs that she needs are neither available in ireland, nor funded on the NHS so her consultant is fighting to change that. She's currently back on the ABs that had her re-admitted to hospital. She started off on a much lower dose to try & allow her body to adjust, and it's been gradually increased. She's not in any pain this time, but her voice is almost gone again. Unfortunately until such times as her consultant can get the other ABs she'll just have to deal with it. And it's not short term. It's indefinite. If she stops the ABs the bacteria starts growing again, and even in the short time she was AB & nebulizer free the bacteria had fresh growth or spores & she had fluid on her lungs, BUT she is a fighter - aren't all cancer patients? She will not let this get her down.
    The PICC results surprisingly came back completely clear - everyone was surprised about that - and she is gradually gaining weight. My folks are taking her out to lunch today actually to an 'all you can eat' Chinese Buffet - my idea of hell, but they figure there'll be a good selection of food that she'll like & they can fill her to capacity & then send her on her merry way.....
    Food-wise I'm trucking along nicely. No major gut issues, no dramas, no worries. I'm kind of in my happy place so why would I want to go anywhere else?
    Gym-wise I am LOVING my new place!! I was so apprehensive about the change, but every day I can see improvement in strength, flexibility, and motivation. I look forward (with a little dread!) to every work out & come away feeling proud of what I've achieved. And I'm making friends, and it hasn't been *too* hard to do that - well, it's been easier than I'd thought given that I'm just not into small talk & all the girly chat.
    We do A LOT of work with kettle bells and Bulgarian Bags - something I haven't used for years and it's been good to get back to it - and So. Many. Lunges. Squats. Dead-lifts. And Burpees. Death by Burpees was our finisher yesterday - one burpee in one minute, then two in a minute, then three in a minute, then four & so on...... what seconds you had left in the minute once you were done was your rest period, so it's starts easy, but Holy Sweet Peaches does it get hard, fast! At the end there just is no rest - or capacity to breathe, or will to live LOL
    Anyways...... one more day at the office, a catch up with friends this evening, a HiiT session on Saturday followed by a Sports Massage & some gardening & then relaaaaaaaaaax!!!
  23. Like
    J9er got a reaction from jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    lol, wouldn't we love to be that babe in a vat of chocolate.
    We're heading out onto the trails too. Camping. Brrrrrr. It's been wet wet wet, but they're calling for sun for the weekend. 
    Currently sitting here avoiding packing and prepping our food......there MAY be a box of GF Mac and cheese that will hitch a ride.....because, camping . But will we eat it.....that's the question. 
  24. Like
    J9er reacted to jmcbn in 9 Belfast Bites   
    Four (well, three & a half) days left at the office, some tidying up/re-potting etc to do in the garden & then it's time to relax into Easter..... 
    LOL j/k - just been planning some mountain trails & a day on the coast for our 4 day break in the North West......
    Now to plan/purchase some non-perishables to bring along with us to keep us all on track!!
  25. Like
    J9er reacted to SugarcubeOD in Sugar sugar everywhere   
    One of the mysteries of the world...