I think there are a couple of reasons for that – the first being that my co-conspirator bailed out on me. Yes, my eight-year-old daughter – who inspired me to go sugar free for a week in the first place via her Brownie group’s nutrition challenge – finally caved.
I have to give Elissa a ton of credit – she made it through four full sugar-free days and didn’t seem tempted to sneak so much as a lollipop. But last night, she had a little friend over for a sleepover. After supper, the girls decided to watch Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs. If you haven’t seen it, you should – it’s really cute. But I digress…if you haven’t seen it, the whole thing is about food; all kinds of yummy foods raining from the skies. There is a particular scene that involves Jell-o; lots and LOTS of Jell-o. Suddenly, Elissa wanted Jell-o and she wanted it bad (ahh…the power of suggestion!).
I gently reminded her about her sugar-free commitment and the poor kid looked like she was about to burst into tears. So I told her it was totally up to her – she could have something sugary if she wanted, or she could continue on with her sugar-free week. Then we went into the kitchen to see if we could find any other options.
My best suggestion for something sweet – that wasn’t highly processed and injected with additional refined sugars – was a homemade juice. Last year, I invested in a juicer that I totally love. Admittedly, it is a bit labour intensive – but if you put in the effort the result is so worth it. So, I came up with an apple-orange-pineapple juice for the girls that was naturally sweet and frothy. It seemed to do the trick and Elissa didn’t ask for Jell-o again.
This morning, however, the wheels came off the sugar-free train for Elissa. After staying up late and waking up early, the sleepover twins were up and looking for breakfast. They started off with some fruit while I prepared scrambled eggs with melted cheese, toast on the side. Pretty hearty, right? Not for these two; they were looking for more and I’d just used up my last five eggs.
“Don’t you have pancakes or waffles, Mom?” asked Elissa. I opened the fridge freezer, and sure enough – a little package of chocolate-chip waffles was sitting there. She seemed quite unconflicted about it – she just wanted the waffles and she wanted them now. With waffles comes syrup, of course, so there you go; she was officially off the sugar-free train.
Then and there, I came to the realization that it’s hard to serve up something sugary to someone else without wanting it yourself – at least a little bit.
My second big temptation came this afternoon – at the grocery store. Today was my first major grocery run since embarking on my sugar-free week, and I have to say that I found it hard. The bakery teased me with fresh, chocolate croissants; the ice-cream section featured a barely-resistible, blow-out sale on Turtles ice cream; and I swear the cooler of soft drinks sitting next to the cash was softly whispering my name.
I was losing my cool. I swear, if I was one of those people who had a twitchy eye that activates under stressful situations, I would have been in full-on twitch mode.
Back at home, I confessed to Ian that I was craving something sweet. I decided on a smoothie, made of frozen blueberries, frozen strawberries, avocado and one of the kids’ mini Danino yogurt drinks (remember, the ones that I was shaking my finger at in yesterday’s post??).
The smoothie was pretty satisfying, so – mini yogurt drink notwithstanding – my sugar crisis was averted. At least for one more day.