artificial sweeteners – not so sweet of a deal

So lately I’ve been getting a lot of headaches/migraines. This is not really uncommon for me as growing up I’ve had to deal with headaches from sun, not eating/drinking enough or allergies. I’m used to normal headaches because my body is really sensitive to change. Lately they’ve been different though. I’ve had more migraines which is not typical for me. I have been blaming it on stress from working a full-time job and having the video business but I don’t think that’s really the case. I’ve always been a busy person, my whole life, and I’m sure there have been times I’ve been more busy or stressed than now. So what has changed??


I started paying attention to my diet more and trying to eat healthier and more natural. I stopped drinking sodas for a long time but since dating the gentleman picked them up again. I used to only drink regular sodas, but then he introduced me to diet sodas. Once I got used to them, the regular ones were too sweet/syrup-y. So in the last few weeks the thought occurred to me that the artificial sweeteners might be the culprit.

I already had weird feelings about Splenda (mostly because it’s made out of chlorine covered sugar) and a few months ago noticed that my yogurt had Splenda in it. That made me mad! How had I not noticed that there was Splenda in my low-fat yogurt! It kind of seemed sneaky. But I didn’t give too much thought to the other artificial sweeteners mostly because they had been around longer. So after my last migraine following a few cups of crystal light at a baby shower (with aspartame) I decided to try not having anything, I mean anything with artificial sweeteners (including: phenylalanine, aspartame, saccharin, splenda, nutrasweet, etc…etc…etc…) and the task has started to seem a bit daunting actually!

I was chewing some gum for example the other day and suddenly got nervous about it and looked at the ingredients. Sure enough there is phenylalanine in it so I spit it out. Believe me, the pain of a migraine will make you not want to eat anything until you’ve figured out the cause!!! So then I was putting on my lip gloss later and thought I might be crazy for thinking there might be something in there but checked anyway. No kidding there is Saccharin in my favorite lip gloss! NOOOOOOOO!

So I looked it up online. It seems that there are lots of people with my same situation, though I seem to be on the easy end with just migraines. People have complained of headaches, migraines, stomach cramps, blurred vision, diahrrea, nausea, vomiting, numbness in the legs. Then I saw that people were writing where they have found these sweeteners: in many foods and drinks, medicines, toothpaste, chapstick, dentist offices, even popcorn…basically anything you can ingest. What bothers me about that though is how sneaky they are about it. It is already annoying to have to look at the ingredient labels for anything that might be a factor and now will I have to ask in restaurants if they used any artificial sweeteners? Yikes! I don’t know for sure if artificial sweeteners are the culprit for me so I’ll keep working on figuring it out for sure…we’ll see I guess.


Now, I am not the type of person to go calling people out or starting some paranoid rumors, but I think there might be something here. I mean just think about it logically, there are all these sweeteners that are made out of chemicals that we are putting into our bodies. There will probably be some consequences to that! I don’t have any problem with sticking with plain sugar and just eating it in moderation. Until there are more studies out there, I would be careful with the artificial sweeteners and stop tricking your body into thinking you are eating something sweet when you’re not. Just eat the sweet thing you want and then go to the gym and burn it off, you will be healthier in the end!!

Happy Anniversary to us!!!

Well, it’s been a year of fun and excitement. Partly it feels like we’ve been married forever, not in a bad way of course, but because we know each other so well and are so comfortable together. The other part of me feels like it’s gone by so fast and there are still days where I suddenly remember I’m married and it’s a little shocking. I guess 1 year of being married doesn’t undo a mindset of 25 years of not being married (does that makes sense?). But seriously, we’ve had so much fun together and I really appreciate the family and friends who have supported us and love us and pray for us.So, yay us! 1 year and still going! I guess it’s not that much of an accomplishment compared to 50 years but still, it’s exciting to us!

Soon I’ll post pics from our anniversary weekend, wahoo!


So the only down side to absentee voting is that you don’t get the coveted “I voted” sticker. I always feel a little left out when everyone else has a sticker and I don’t because I voted a week ago! So this year I made a little badge for myself and wore it proudly at work all day.

Now, because of the unsubtleness (yes not a real word but whatev.) of my badge I had a bunch of kids asking me who I voted for today. I obviously can’t discuss things like that with the kids so instead I asked them who they would have voted for if they were 18 (I love the double standard hee hee). Of course all this really did was show me who their parents voted for…I had two highlight answers to share from today:

#1 from a 5th grade girl
I would vote for Obama
me: Why is that?
girl: because he’s totally cool and awesome.
me: Oh, is that all you need to become president?
girl:Well, I’m not sure, but the president has to be totally awesome.#2 from a 2nd grade boy
boy: McCain totally, we HAVE to vote for McCain!
me: Why is that?
boy: Well, you can’t vote for Obama because then he will have prop. 8 and then we have to marry other boys!! [the rest of the boys were then uneasy in their seats and agreed they would vote for McCain too]
me: Well, that’s not entirely true…
boy: Ok everyone, so tell your parents that and vote McCain

I absolutely love hearing how kids completely misunderstand their parents’ opinions and politics in general. It gave me a good laugh though 🙂



Today’s the Day

So after all the campaigning, bickering, fighting, and arguing, the day has arrived where we actually make a decision. Say what you want about all the drama, but the idea of voting is so cool! We all have our chance to vote for who and what we want. If you don’t vote, you have no right to complain because after it’s all said and done, it’s at least fair. We’ve all had our chance to study the issues and learn about what is best for our country and we get to decide together, as one country. So even in the frustration and the certain people you can’t discuss politics with, at least we all have our chance to voice what we think. Of course I care about who and what I want for the country but I’m only one person and at least I did my part and voted…Happy voting!

Happy Halloween Part II

So here are some photos from our annual Halloween party on Saturday!! A lot of people went all out this year and that makes us happy 🙂
First, here’s my girls Bible study crew, well most of them…
Then the gentleman’s brother and sister-in-law as Goulet from SNL and Sally from The Nightmare Before Christmas.
The F fam as a sheep and Bo Peep. We found pieces of hi’s costume all over after the party.
The Q fam as a cowgirl and either terrorist or anti-terrorist, I don’t think we ever found out the answer to what he was. But I do like how you can pretty much only see his eyes and mouth!
The V fam as Moulder and Scully from the X-Files of course!
Another F fam as the wolf and Little Red Riding Hood.
The B fam as Suzanne Sommers and Richard Simmons, complete with thighmasters!
And us as Joy and Earl Hickey from My Name is Earl. And now you can see the finished product with hi’s facial hair. YIKES!
The V fam as Mario and the Princess!
And The P fam as Juno and Pauley Bleaker from Juno.
Awesome costumes this year! There were more but I guess we didn’t get photos of them, sorry guys!!
Happy Halloween!!

Happy Halloween!!

For the most part, Halloween had been pretty anti-climactic. The group of people I work with (support staff) chose to be the “Reading Ropers” this year as our “hero” for Halloween. (Schools don’t celebrate actual holidays so ‘dress up as your favorite hero’ is what we do) Anyway, it kind of sucks when other people decide how you will dress since I didn’t have anything western. So off to dad’s house I go! I borrowed a cowboy hat and a bolero tie but didn’t have any boots. So I wore my rainbows and figured I’m more of what you would call a Californian cowgirl. Plus I’d take flip flops over boots any day.


Aaaaanyway, the day definitely got better when I got home from work. We started on the gentleman”s costume for tomorrow’s party. He’s been growing out his beard and tomorrow I’ll post pictures of the final product and our costumes.

But here was the process of the de-beardification or whatever…

first, the before picture:

Then the first stages of buzzing:

Then the full goatee:

Then the partial goatee? I don’t know what you’d call this:

And then the handlebar mustache:

He finished it after this but you’ll have to wait until tomorrow to see the rest!!

I bet we make our parents proud.