Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Summer time blues...

The temperature now is very hot for the Canadian West Coast - around 30 daily, and the nights don't seem to cool off much. The good thing is that it makes eating less very easy, but it makes the risk of drinking sugary or unhealthy drinks very high. I know I grab whatever is handy at times (canned ice tea, pop)  instead of making sure it's sugar free or has some health value to it. 

I've also been stressed in a way I haven't experienced for a long time. A grown up child returned for a short and disastrous visit; and, my teens are spending way too much time together so they ARGUE and YELL and SWEAR constantly.  

The disastrous visit was heartbreaking. Most of my adult kids are doing well - they may be struggling but their struggles are just what you go through in life as an adult - no protection for that. This one, though, has extra burdens that keep him from creating a good life for himself and don't allow him to understand that it could be better with the right help. Maybe someday that will happen for him, but not today, and that shatters me. It also sends me right back to the high stress I experienced while he was growing up - always being hyper alert and ready to respond to react to some kind of unpredictable behaviour. I had let go of that over the last few years, but it's amazing how fast that returns. 

He left today to return to the town he's been living in for the last few years. I hugged him and said I loved him ---a slight hug in return, nothing more. I guess that's my greatest sorrow - that I can't ever seem to help him understand that I really do love him with all my heart and soul. Or, does that even matter to him?

As for my teens, not much I can do. I schedule in programs and plan for things as I can, but teens make their own choices to a large extent. I am grateful that I'm not dealing with drugs and alcohol so far, but my pride takes a huge nose dive as I hear them screaming their foul words for the neighbors and all to hear. I assume that my neighbors think we parents swear like that in the home (we don't), or that we have never, ever tried to get our children to learn conflict management (we do - and are working on that more and more) - but 5 adolescents + temper dysregulation disorder + fasd+ adhd+ anxiety = loud and obnoxious. 

Next week we go on vacation to visit my family in the Kootenays. Will we survived the 12 hour drive and the week in a hotel? At this moment I have my doubts. 

So, time for major stress management - that means extra swimming time and more meditating and making sure my oxygen intake is strong. Maybe a little wine wouldn't be a bad idea - but only if it's chilled!

Here's a nifty vegan snack for hot afternoons. Chop up a few fresh vegetables and make an easy kale hummus dip. Easy peasy and low cal, healthy, and fast. 

  • 3 cups kale, de-stemmed
  • 1 can of chickpeas, well-rinsed and drained
  • ¼ cup + 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • 4 cloves garlic, peeled
  • ¼ cup tahini
  • ½ tsp sea salt
  • ½ tsp black pepper
  1. Add everything to a food processor or high-powered blender and process until smooth.
  2. Enjoy as a dip for raw veggies or crackers, as a spread in a sandwich or wrap or use a dollop on top of a fresh salad.
  3. Store in the fridge in an air-tight container.