Antibiotic Adventures

On Tuesday I picked up my antibiotic prescription. This was something of an adventure in itself, as the exact prescription the doctor called in came out to almost $900 and they had to call the doctor and ask if there was a cheaper substitute. Eek!

And this after several weeks of deciding and redeciding to go the antibiotic route at all. Lyme disease is hard to kill at all, and there are a lot of disagreements about what works and what doesn’t. I’m not normally a ‘just take antibiotics’ person, but in this case it seemed at least worth a try.

I suppose it’s not that surprising that the nervousness hit me on the drive home. I had an antibiotic prescription. I was one of those people. I would actually be starting a treatment that might or might not work. I had stepped on the path to being on long term antibiotics, and though I had and have every intention of stepping off again before it gets that far, I will have to decide at every crossroads whether it’s time to leave that path or not.

Wednesday morning I looked down at the surprisingly large and unnaturally blue capsule in hand. And then I swallowed it. And then I proceeded to feel nauseated for the next couple of hours while stubbornly refusing to throw up one of the pills that cost me nearly a $1 each (better than $15 each, but still…).

After reading the directions I tried drinking a much larger amount of water with my antibiotic this morning, and that knocked the reaction down to noticeable but bearable nausea.

I also instituted raw garlic as part of my diet today.

I was pleased that though my research suggests that straight garlic is not enough to kill of Lyme, raw garlic does break down the biofilms that make Lyme so hard to kill with antibiotics.  Not only does this increase the possibility of the antibiotics being effective, and getting rid of Lyme once and for all, but having garlic on my regimen restores some of my natural remedies cred. 🙂

So, my goal is three cloves of raw garlic a day. Today I did one clove with each meal (two with supper, because they were very small)–either just sprinkled on top of my food, or mixed with butter to make super garlic bread. I like garlic (a lot!) so this isn’t a problem for me, the only question is how long I can keep it up before Colton gets tired of me smelling like garlic.

My supplement plan is starting to get complicated, but it looks something like this, depending on the day:

thyroid pill first thing in the morning (ideally at least twenty minutes before breakfast),

breakfast with probiotic,red raspberry leaf capsules and selenium (and sporadically vitamin C, also probably raw garlic now),

fermented cod liver oil after Colton leaves for work (that gives time for the rotten fish smell to dissipate before anyone actually has to be around me) and omega oils at the same time,

coconut oil (coconut butter right now until I get more oil) around the same time or when I remember it,

antibiotic when I start to wash dishes in the morning, because if I’m running on schedule that puts it about half way between breakfast and lunch (first thing in the morning on a completely empty stomach is too hard on the stomach, but the further away from food it’s taken, the better it’s absorbed),

lunch with probiotic and raw garlic,

and supper with probiotic and raw garlic.

And after writing it all out, I suddenly understand why I feel like I’m going to forget to take something important… What I don’t understand is how I can be taking all that and not be feeling amazing all the time. 🙂

Homemade Barbecue Sauce

If you read my ketchup post, you already have a pretty good idea what I’d be looking for in a homemade barbecue sauce–something that tastes relatively like storebought without having any junky ingredients. I found this recipe, made by someone who likes Sweet Baby Ray’s BBQ sauce, which made it sounds rather promising. After tweaking, this is what my recipe came out to be. (And yes, it was Colton approved when it was done…)

Barbecue Sauce

1 cup honey

1/4 cup +2 TBSP molasses (it would have been 1/2 a cup, but that was all I could get out of the bottle)

1 1/4 cups homemade ketchup

1/4 cup red wine

1/4 cup white vinegar

1/2 tsp lime juice

2 1/2 tsp mustard powder

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 tsp black pepper

1 tsp onion powder

several dashes hot sauce (I used Frank’s)

A Very Bad Monday Morning

There are mornings where unexpectedly finding a very dried out dead frog in the floorboards of your car is not the lowest point in your morning…

It was a very full weekend. It was a good weekend, but still very full. I was sick on Friday so I couldn’t do any of my normal weekend prep. (But I did officially come off the GAPS diet and we ordered pizza so I didn’t have to cook supper either. Yay!) Saturday we went out to Cracked Pepper to celebrate the end of GAPS with eclairs, did all our Sunday prep and Saturday chores, got ready to spend the weekend out with Colton’s family and attend a birthday party, attended said birthday party and then drove out to the farm. Sunday was church and fellowship meal and then back out to the farm and being social and staying up too late being even more social.

Like I said, it was a good weekend, and it was full of fun stuff. But there is a vital fact that needs to be mentioned, even more important than the fact that I wasn’t sleeping in my own bed for two nights, or that my introvert self was done being social, or that I was eating different food that I had been in months, or even that my hormones were verging on the cranky stage anyway. This vital fact is that in all the chaos, I missed taking my thyroid pills Sunday and Monday mornings.

By Monday morning I was a mess. It was cold outside and I couldn’t quite get warm, I was irritable, I was tired, everything just felt wrong in an indefinable way, and I didn’t like any of it, but I couldn’t pull out of it. And then the abdominal cramps started.

By the time we pulled into the Samaritan parking lot I knew I wasn’t likely to get through any of the Monday chores waiting for me at home. I was just hoping to make it through the two minute drive back to the apartment so I could crash.

On that two minute drive the gallon of milk we’d brought from the farm tipped over, the lid came off, and our beautiful organic milk was all over the floor in the front of the car. And that would be when I started crying…

That would also be when an odd knocking noise started in the front of the car. I still don’t know if that’s a noise that’s going to come back later, or if I just happened to catch a paper in the tire or something at that really inopportune moment.

I got home, got some lavender oil (which thankfully eliminated the abdominal pain almost instantly), and went back out into the cold to deal with the giant puddle of milk sitting in our floorboards.

In course of scooping milk out onto the parking lot, I scooped a very odd looking rock into the cup. It was so odd looking, in fact, that even in that moment of just wanting this job over with, I had to take a second look. Because, you see, this rock looked very oddly like a frog. Even on a second look, down to minute detail, it looked like a very hard, dead, frog.

It’s a really good thing I didn’t touch it with my bare hands, because at that point in the morning I’m not sure I could have recovered from it. Not having to handle it however, I think the sheer ridiculousness of finding an apparently petrified frog in the floor boards of our car was something of a steadying factor.

I finished the job the best I could, and went up to IM Colton about the whole thing. (This took an extra ten minutes while our internet was being inexplicably difficult.) I crashed most of the day, and Colton even took the afternoon off and did dishes and laundry for me, and after taking a late dose of thyroid medicine (plus a nap) I started to feel somewhat better.

I have to wonder what all played into my crashing so hard on Monday, and whether I do have some amount of bad reaction to eggs that played into the whole thing. I am pretty sure that missing my thyroid medication played a big role, and that makes me wonder how I functioned at all without it. Besides that though, I really do have to wonder, how did the frog get in our car in the first place?

An Odd Sort of Week…

When I married Colton, it occurred to me that I was getting a whole lot of brothers (and a couple of sisters), but what didn’t occur to me at the time was that this would eventually mean *also* adding a whole lot of sisters (and a couple more brothers) to the final tally.

I’ve had an odd close up but far away perspective on the last couple of weeks, knowing a lot about what might be happening, but not getting to see most of it. I did get a preview of very dainty, sparkly ring, which was followed by a day of very normal housework and hours of not hearing any kind of update. I find this understandable, of course, I’m just saying it’s been… odd.

And of course, the whole adventure is bringing back memories of my courtship and engagement two years ago. Interesting blast from the past: on this date two years ago I was visiting Tennessee for the first time. I remember this trip including both stars and a fire that Colton and I were both looking at the same time in relatively close proximity to one another, but not, you know, *together*. Suffice it to say there are memories good, bad and simply frustrating that are being stirred up right now…

On the distinctly non-emo side of the scale, we do have that new sister aspect of the whole situation, which is pretty cool. There’s even a chance, I hear, that they’ll end up living in close proximity to us. I would vote for the close proximity option, which, really should outweigh any other inconveniences associated with it for them, right?

I guess the only way to end this post properly is to say: Congratulations Sam and Laura!

(I feel like should follow that up with a funny piece of advice, but the only one I can come up with is to smack people who say dumb things about marriage, so maybe I’ll just leave that off…)

Better Than Storebought Ketcup Recipe (lacto-fermented)

I made lacto fermented ketchup a couple of time times while I was on GAPS. It’s a decent recipe, and filled the ketchup niche for me while I was not able to eat many different kinds of foods. Sadly, my husband said it was fine as a kind of tomato condiment, but it wasn’t really, you know, like *ketchup*.

So I bought him ‘real’ ketchup with msg and high fructose corn syrup while I focused on finishing my own diet experience. Now that I’m mostly off of GAPS I have a little more time and energy for new kitchen experiments, and realized that I really wanted to make a good-for-you ketchup the my husband would really enjoy.

A little research turned up this recipe as being a good substitute for storebought. And a little tinkering led to a combination of the two recipes. Colton did a side by side taste test on sausage and fried potato with my homemade ketchup versus the storebought ketchup we have right now (generic brand Kroger). He’s reserving complete judgement until he gets to try them on french fries, but on fried potato he said the homemade ketchup was actually better than the storebought.

Win.

Lacto-fermented Imitation Storebought Ketchup

6 oz can tomato paste
1/2 cup honey
1/4 cup vinegar
1/4 cup water
1/4 cup whey (drained from yogurt)
1 tsp salt
1/4 tsp onion powder
1/8 tsp garlic powder

Mix all ingredients in a pint jar. Cap loosely and ferment at room temperature for two days. (Keep it a few feet away from sauerkraut, sourdough or other ferments in your kitchen to prevent crossing of bacteria strains–different ferments use different kinds of good bacteria.) After two days tighten the cap and transfer to the fridge.

We taste tested after one day of fermentation and the flavor was good–it just hadn’t reached it’s peak probiotic level yet.

If you are a ‘we sweeten our yogurt with wheat bran’ kind of family, you can definitely cut down on the amount of honey in the recipe (by half to three-quarters, or just use this recipe), but if you’re really looking for a processed food replica use the full amount.