Well hey guys! I’ve been loving the beautiful fall weather and the fun Halloween season so much!
I love this time of year. I really wish we could have an extra month of it!
Last week, the kids were out of school a couple of days for Fall Break. We couldn’t do anything too exciting because our oldest son had to work and Kev and I had various commitments.
SO, I came up with a random day trip. 🙂
We drove a couple of hours south to Topaz Mountain, where you can dig and find gemstones such as Topaz (obviously) and other gemstones such as garnet, red beryl and amethyst. We had fun digging around and were able to find a few small pieces of Topaz.
I didn’t take a single picture while we were there (super lame), but I found this pic on the internet of some topaz specimens which looked similar to the ones we found…
We only found 2-3 crystals and they were on the smaller side though. It was still very neat to find them!
All in all, Topaz Mountain was cool, but I didn’t realize how labor intensive it would be. We were only there a couple of hours, but I think a lot of people stay all day or for a couple of days. My big kids enjoyed it, but I think it was a little hard for my little kiddos.
I would actually like to go again, but I think I’ll wait until the little kids are a bit older. I would also like to do some more research about how to have more success and simplify the process!
It made for a fun adventure though!
After we left Topaz Mountain, we drove another 45 minutes to the Dugway Geode Beds to search for some geodes!
Folks, that place is in THEE middle of nowhere! Seriously, I don’t think I’ve ever been in that remote of a place! Our trusty minivan could barely make it there, but thankfully Kev is a good hardcore minivan driver, lol.
I really enjoyed the geode beds though and we were able to find a lot of cool geodes! It was much easier to find the geodes than it was to find the topaz. The kids enjoyed finding them and then cracking them open.
I took ONE picture while we were there….
Yes, this is a lame picture. I was just too busy soaking up the experience and trying to help all the kids. I didn’t even think about taking pictures, unfortunately. 🙁
I also didn’t take any pictures of the geodes we found, but if you click here you can see a bunch of pictures on the internet that other people have found in that same location. We found several very beautiful geodes and we were only there about an hour.
I really didn’t know what to expect at either of these places and sadly, I think we were a little under prepared. It was still fun though, but I think we’ll have to go again, research a bunch more and do it right.
We also went on a beautiful hike over Fall Break! We hiked up to Cecret Lake up Little Cottonwood Canyon (not too far from Salt Lake City.)
Guys, this was a very, very cool hike! I’d never been there before and I must say that it is now one of my very favorite “close to home” hikes! I would highly recommend it.
It wasn’t too long (I think just under 2 miles round trip) and it was so beautiful the entire way!! We didn’t pick the best time of year to go….there was some snow up there which made the trail a little muddy, but it was still so fun. I definitely want to do it again next spring or summer.
It was absolutely gorgeous….
It was definitely a fun family hike. My three year old hiked it all by himself!
We took the fam out to dinner afterward, which made for a fun night. Our oldest son met us for dinner after he got off of work too. 🙂
Well we definitely enjoyed Fall Break and have definitely been loving the beautiful fall weather!
I was also loving the little Carb Cycling plan that I’ve been doing….until my body decided to fall apart. Guys, I started that plan about 3 1/2 weeks ago. I love the plan. I love the science, flexibility and design of the plan. I just don’t think my body likes it. 🙁
Yes, it makes me sad.
Side note…I’ve mentioned before that I looooove to learn. I’m always reading and studying up on everything. I especially love to learn about health and fitness (obviously.) I can’t tell you how many times I’ve read about Carb Cycling and have heard so many good things about it!
I’ve actually dabbled with it several times over the years too. I did Chris and Heidi Powell’s Extreme Transformation plan earlier this year and it’s also based on carb cycling. I loved that plan, but as I look back on my experience, I realize my body didn’t like it then either!??? I didn’t lose any weight, I actually gained some weight, felt bloated and just felt crappy.
It might be coincidental, but I’m not thinking it is. I won’t go on and on and on, but I just think the extreme swings in carbs (which usually helps people to lose weight, rev their metabolism and shed fat!) doesn’t agree with my body. I’ve learned over the years that I am sensitive to hormones.
I’m one of the lucky ones that as soon as I see a positive pregnancy test, my body immediately blows up. I’m also one who “clings to the poof” as a nursing mother. I’ve heard so many times that nursing helps mothers lose weight, burn calories and sucks the fat right outta ya! That is not the case with me! As long as I’m nursing a baby, my body loves to store and cling onto fat.
Over the years, I’ve felt time and time again the affects of hormones on my body.
Soooo, I’m thinking this carb cycling thing might not be good for “hormonally sensitive” people! Just my thoughts. Just my assumption. It just really feels like it kind of jacked with my hormones.
I felt good for the first week or so. I loved the high carb and low carb days. It kept it interesting and actually felt liberating. I really loved it, BUT, during the second week I actually started to GAIN weight. It didn’t feel like actual weight gain, it felt more like bloated wacky hormonal weight gain.
Then my appetite started to increase and I started to crave ALL THE CRAPPY FOOD! Again, it definitely felt like a wacky hormone reaction. I ended up giving into some of those crappy cravings and consequently, started to feel blah and run down.
I still tried to stick to “the plan” a little longer though because I was hoping my “hormonal weirdness” would go away.
Nope. No dice. I’ve just felt so tired, unmotivated, poofy and just not well.
It has been frustrating. There is nothing worse than working hard to improve your health and fitness…..and getting less healthy and fatter in the process!
Sooooo, I’ve decided I’m quittin’ the plan!
I love researching and learning about health and fitness. I love experimenting with new things. I love learning about what makes my body feel and look it’s best. It think it’s actually fun. BUT, I realize that part of the process is also learning what doesn’t work as well for my body.
For the record, I still think carb cycling is a cool thing. I think it can work well for a lot of people. My body just doesn’t like it. 🙁
Sooooo, I’ve been trying to remember the times in my life when I’ve felt and looked my best….and what I was doing to get there. I realized that my body loves it when I follow a nice, easy, consistently healthy plan.
It’s not complicated.
I’ve definitely found that when I keep the blood sugar stable (eating a balanced diet full of healthy sources of protein, fat and carbs), I feel great.
Over the years, I’ve also cut sugar out of my diet many times. I always feel so great when I cut it out. Sugar really is so so bad for the body and is actually very addicting. I still love it though, dang it.
It has my heart. <3
I’ve learned that I can handle a little bit of sugar just fine. I can have a little bit of candy or some chocolate chips on my oatmeal or yogurt and it feels like a nice little treat and doesn’t make me crave everything in sight. However, if I start on cookies, brownies, donuts, etc…..I just want to eat ALL THE SUGAH!!
I’ve definitely learned my limits and have found that it’s good for me to just completely cut the “baked good varieties” out of my diet from time to time.
I also find that when I eat too much sugar, it makes healthy eating seem so daunting. It’s almost like that sugar awakes all of my taste buds and cravings and it makes healthy food seem very undesirable.
On the flip side…when I eat well for an extended period of time, especially when I cut out most of the sugar….healthy food tastes awesome! Healthy eating becomes enjoyable and rewarding….almost easy.
I’ve learned this and witnessed this time and time again…..and I’m sure I’ll have to learn it some more! Gah.
Anyway, to sum it up….for now I’m just going to focus on eating well and eating a consistently balanced diet. I’m going to cut out the baked goods and sugar stuff out of my diet for a while. I’m still going to count macros, but I’m going to keep the macros nice and balanced. I’m thinkin’ 35% protein, 35% carbs, 30% fat. I’ll see how that makes me feel. I think it will be great.
Well, it’s late and I need to go to bed. I’ve really been trying hard to get my sleep lately and I’m happy to say I’ve been doing okay with it. When my body started to feel worn out and wacky, I made sure to be extra diligent at getting my sleep.
I know sleep is such a HUGE part of the overall healthy living picture and too often I suck at it.
But, for now I’m doing well. Yay. I hope you all have an incredible weekend!! xoxo