Balancing Your Bipolar

My book Balancing Your Bipolar is now live on Amazon! It has been a crazy few months and many things have changed since the last time I posted. I have been busy with the book but I hope to be posting more regularly here now that the majority of the work is done.

I am learning a lot about myself and how to push out of my comfort zone. Publishing a book has been very exciting but very scary as well.

It is nerve-wracking and stressful to put myself out there. I also hit a depression cycle right after I finished final edits of my book. Talk about bad timing!

I have had to put the techniques I wrote to work on myself and I have seen great results. It is not perfect, nor easy but it is completed and I keep telling myself I can do hard things.

Now a little about the book:

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Balancing Your Bipolar: A Holistic Approach to Living a Life You Love helps loved ones and people who have bipolar to work to have a life of balance and learn to love their life. It also shares my story, to help you know what is possible and that I have been there.

Some of the tools you can learn in the book include:

  • managing activity level
  • managing food issues
  • building a basic exercise routine
  • dealing with other’s perceptions
  • managing your expectations

You will also learn the basics of bipolar disorder, and how it can really feel to be trapped inside a body that won’t always cooperate.

 

I hope you will check it out! I would love to hear what you think let me know in the reviews or comments below!

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Delicious Ketogenic Dessert

 

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My husband said this recipe is the best low carb/keto dessert I have made to date. That is saying something considering how many we have tried.

Considering I made a number of changes I decided to share so all of my tweaks could be in one place. I did follow the original fairly closely, and you can find that post at the bottom after the recipe, courtesy of Wholesome Yum.

I like to get straight to my recipes, without too much fluff.

So, without further ado, here it is:

 

Sex in a Pan Dessert

  • Servings: 24
  • Difficulty: medium
  • Print

Sex in a Pan Dessert

INGREDIENTS

Pecan Crust

  • 2 1/4 cup Almond flour
  • 3/4 cup Pecan meal (or make it by grinding pecans in a food processor or blender)
  • 3 tbsp erythritol
  • 1/2 cup Butter (measured solid, then melted)

Cream Cheese Layer

  • 3/8 cup Heavy cream
  • 3/8 cup erythritol
  • 3/4 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 12 oz Cream cheese (softened)

Chocolate Layer

  • 1 1/2 cup Heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cup Unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1/2 cup erythritol
  • 4.5 oz baker’s chocolate (chopped)
  • 3 tbsp Butter
  • 1 1/2 tsp Xanthan gum
  • 1 1/2 tsp Vanilla extract

Whipped Cream Layer

  • 2 1/4 cup Heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp erythritol
  • 3/4 tsp Vanilla extract
  • 1/2 oz baker’s chocolate (shaved using a peeler, grater, or shaver)

INSTRUCTIONS

More tips about this recipe in the post above!

Crust

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Line a “9×13” baking dish with parchment paper, one of the pre-cut pieces fit perfectly.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together almond flour, pecan meal (I blended pecans in my blendtec), and erythritol. Stir in melted butter until a crumbly dough forms. Press evenly into the lined baking dish.
  3. Bake for 14-16 minutes, until golden and firm. Set aside to cool, it can be put in the fridge to cool more quickly.

Cream Cheese Layer

  1. While the crust is baking, make the cream cheese layer. Use a stand mixer to beat the cream, vanilla extract, and erythritol together, until stiff peaks form. Gradually beat in the softened cream cheese, an ounce at a time, until well combined.
  2. Once the crust has cooled, spread the cream cheese mixture evenly over it.

Chocolate Layer

  1. While the crust is cooling, make the chocolate pudding layer. In a medium saucepan, combine the heavy cream, coconut milk, baker’s chocolate, butter, and erythritol. Cook over medium-low to low heat, stirring frequently, until the chocolate is melted and erythritol dissolves (about 5-10 minutes). Be careful not to get the heat too high to avoid burning the chocolate.
  2. Gradually sprinkle the xanthan gum into the saucepan a 1/4 tsp at a time (don’t just dump it in) and immediately whisk to incorporate. Continue to heat for about 5 minutes, whisking constantly. Remove from heat, then whisk in the vanilla extract.
  3. Cool the chocolate pudding for 15 minutes (it will thicken, but still be liquid). Stir/whisk again after cooling, then pour it over the cream cheese layer.
  4. Cover with plastic wrap, making sure it’s directly against the surface to prevent a film forming. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.

Whipped Cream Layer

  1. Use a stand mixer to beat the cream, vanilla extract, and erythritol together, until stiff peaks form.
  2. Spread the whipped cream over the chocolate layer. Sprinkle chocolate shavings on top.
  3. Refrigerate for 1-2 more hours (or as long as needed until serving) to fully set. I was able to serve it immediately if you’re in a rush, and this step can wait until the next day if you cool the chocolate layer overnight.

http://www.balancingmybipolar.com

 

The original recipe can be found on Wholesome Yum HERE.

If you decide to make it, I would love to hear how you liked it and if you make any future tweaks that you liked. Please include them in the comments.

Book Review: Diving into Love

This blog is somewhat multifaceted. I hope you can see how it all ties together, and for those that enjoy it, all or one of the many parts, that you will stick around.

So today, I want to share a book from a new author that I have been networking with. She has been helping me with my writing and I have done some beta reading.

Full disclosure I beta read this book, and received an advanced reader copy (ARC).

However, my review is my own, and I don’t share unless I truly enjoy the book and give it a good review. So I will take it away. Click on the photo to take a look at the book.

Diving into Love:

This book is a romance novel. The kind I love the most. It also has a healthy dose of mystery and suspense which I love. The main characters are in high school, and it reminds me of young first loves which is always fun.

The characters are realistic and enjoyable. I couldn’t put it down. I could relate to the sweet girl and her insecurities.

If you need a good clean sweet romance novel to read this weekend or this fall, check it out!

Week 11: Ketogenic Diet Experiment/moderate carb

My husband lost another pound and a half!

Seriously he is doing so well. Crushing it.

I’m not doing so well at keto. I’m still maintaining the habit of three keto meals a day as a family which I love and I’m sure is still drastically decreasing my simple carbs over all. However, other than that not so much.

I am finding success in excercise. I’m really enjoying my walks. I get them in at least twice a week and try for more.

I practiced restorative yoga this Tuesday and was amazed to find that the beginning of my fitloop bodyweight fitness routine has a lot in common with restorative yoga.

I need to commit myself to that routine. I know it would be so good for me and strength gains. I’m just all over the place right now trying to keep things together. As everyone is from time to time.

I know school will help calm things down some. Also time will help. Some things just need time.

I’m living the dream though. Loving life. In a few months I’m excited to work on more remodels and I will have some good before and afters hopefully. This time from my side of the house.

I plan to mud the walls and paint so it should be exciting. I will start with just the dining room and living room. I want to do them together because they are really just one big room. I’m excited to see how it looks with the beautiful blue from the apartment. Hopefully it isn’t too dark.

Until next week. I may be late again as we have a family reunion to attend.

Movie Review: The Magic Pill

I watched The Magic Pill last night on Netflix. It was very interesting. I was most curious in comparing it to the vegan movie What the Health.

The tone was so different.

I loved that they didn’t just have people practicing and anecdotal evidence. Although they did have that they also had research teams who are looking into keto for autism and cancer etc.

So cool!!! Also it wasn’t fear mongering or attacking it was calm and legit.

Without further ado, I will list the pros and cons and let you decide for yourself. If you go watch come back and let me know what you thought in the comments.

Pros:

  • Research authorities rather than practicing people who have a paid interest
  • Fairly open and simply saying need more research
  • Not shoving it down your throat
  • Laid back and relaxed feel
  • Not fear based tactics

Cons:

  • Said to avoid dairy. In my opinion that isn’t necessary for most people
  • Not a lot of concrete studies mostly anecdotal evidence

Week 10: Ketogenic Diet Experiment

Progress!!!

The Hubby lost 4 lbs and is finally sleeping better! He is also working out more. He is now down to 222.6.

I maintained at 120 which isn’t bad at all. I’m still eating three meals a day very low carb and not restricting when I have cravings. I figure it’s way less sugar than I would have otherwise and we are all eating healthier.

Strangely fruit is the thing I want to eat more of the most. I’m not going to complain about that.

I have had bugs killing plants in my garden lately. Saturday they tore through and destroyed many plants. So I replanted yet again. I also sprayed for bugs.

I really want some greens and squash from our garden this year. I’m determined. The garden is coming along beautifully other than that.

 

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Amazon Mechanical Turk Review, Plus Guide to Get Started

I talk about this thing called MTurk, or Amazon Mechanical Turk in my book Balancing Your Bipolar. It has been a lifesaver to help us make ends meet working from home. It is hard to have it cover all your bills, but I did make $800 one month and like I said it saved us at one point.

I now use it mainly for a little boost. I tend to make about $100 a month or so at it. This is done fairly easily with a goal of about $5 a day and doing a few surveys to get there.

I enjoy the work and at one point used it as a therapy essentially. It really helped me feel productive when I was depressed. I would do mindless tasks while watching Netflix and make a few dollars an hour instead of wasting all my time on Sudoku or some other such thing to get my mind off being depressed. It worked well to shut off the negative noise in my mind.

So as far as a review I’m just going to do a simple pro and con list.

Pros:

  1. Make money from home
  2. work as much or as little as you want, no min, and the max is so high you probably won’t ever reach it.
  3. get paid relatively quickly
  4. pay straight to bank with no fee
  5. interesting work that furthers research
  6. varied work

Cons:

  1. hard to make good income
  2. takes time to learn
  3. lots of crap on there like receipts, NEVER do receipts
  4. some pay is horrible. It’s always a good idea to keep a running calculation of your time and keep it above $6 an hour. I shoot for more like $10
  5. sometimes the good work is mindnumbing
  6. It’s not a get rich quick, sorry

It also worked well when I was hypomanic and needed something to keep me busy.

So without further ado, here is my guide to getting started with MTurk:

Here are two really good guides. One is included within the other as a link, but I included it first here: Your First 1000 Hits

It helps with information on how to sign up. I would recommend signing up now just in case it takes a while to be accepted. Then once you get the account you could start with 10-30 minutes a day working on the basics of that initial guide getting your account out of probation.

Then when you are ready you could move on here:

Beef up Your Game

Let me know if you have any questions. I don’t want to overload anyone with info which is why I gave you the guides you can take one step at a time.

Week 9: Ketogenic Diet Experiment for Mental Health

This week has been crap! But seriously, I have had 4 cheat meals, and none of them were really planned. Most of them were related to my church calling. I volunteer with young women ages 16-18. They are so much fun and I love the calling. However, our church culture is centered around food. So many times we have treats. It is a bonding thing that extends to our entire American culture.

I, however, have gained a couple pounds this week. I broke 120! I know that is many people’s goal to get down to or goal to lose, but I’m still going to go at least to 125 maybe even 135. It is a healthy weight for me. Also, I can tell that my tummy is more toned. This tells me that hopefully I have lost fat and gained muscle.

My hubby didn’t lose this week but basically maintained. He isn’t sleeping well. He is in a lot of pain as he has kidney stones. Hopefully, they can pass and he can start getting better sleep again. He loses a lot more when he sleeps the full amount and regular hours.

Keto is going well, but we could both do better. Him with sleep, and me with staying on plan a little better.

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On another note, I have been writing up a storm. I finished my first romance novel, and I started on my second one. I am editing the first and working with my incredible cover designer. She is also helping me with a couple other projects including getting my cover done for my first book for print.

I’m going to include a few reviews on the back cover as well as a short synopsis. Then it will be available for print. I know some people want that option as it is easier to share and give as a gift as well as reference and take notes in for the future.

I’m also considering creating a companion workbook but it’s not exciting me right now. I’m trying to ride my energy and put it in the most productive places.

Unfortunately, that is something you learn to do with the hypomania as a bipolar person.

I’m working hard though to work during the depression as well. I watched a YouTube video on just that. A family member shared it with me. I love that she was kind enough to read my book and knows what to recommend to me. I loved it.

Until next week, remember to follow me on Instagram @balancingmybipolar for recipes and to follow my keto journey daily.

Week 8: Ketogenic Diet Experiment

We both forgot to do an official weigh in today so I will update tomorrow. I did one midday though and I think I’m seeing progress.

I finished my second book last night. I have decided to write fiction for now. Mainly clean contemporary Christian romance novels.

It is so much more fun to write to be honest. My memoir book Balancing Your Bipolar was somehow heart wrenching and raw and difficult and it’s still hard for me to market and share. This book though is the type of book that I love to read myself. I’m hoping that will make it easier to market and share.

My garden is coming along beautifully and I’m so pleased. Back to Eden gardening makes the garden look so pretty. I love it and I’m excited for summer to harvest.

I have been busy with many things some of which I will share more of once they are ready. I so enjoy writing and learning all about everything that goes with it.

Week 7: Ketogenic Diet Experiment for Bipolar

Success!!!

This week I gained 1.6 lbs so .6 over what I lost last week. And hubby lost 1.8 lbs!!!!

So nice when it clicks and you’re getting things right.

One day last week I ate a small slice of ice cream cake and went over my carbs by a lot. I was crazy thirsty after and probably doubled my water for the day. I didn’t feel like I went out of ketosis. I wonder if the water flushed excess carbs so when I switched to carb burning it wasn’t for long or at all. I’m not a scientist so if anyone knows more please enlighten me in the comments.

My husband bought me a new Chromebook for my birthday!!! I’m so excited to use it to write each day and for blogging. Mine the keyboard was broken so I had to plug one in and it felt more like a desktop. It was frustrating to bring places.

I am so curious about this experiment. Either way it’s good I’m off sugar since that isn’t good for anyone but especially bipolar people. But how will I know if it is working or not? Any suggestions are much appreciated.

Our renter is fully moved in and our deck is painted.

I love how it turned out. Our backyard is becoming my own Oasis little by little. .

Also I have been walking more. I was walking once a week but I was sore every time. I decided I will walk 6 days a week if I can to build up endurance. I have a couple of friends who will join me which is way more fun. My girls come home tired and my baby is right ready for bed.

Hubby has been working out every night and is up to 4 pull ups. He is so strong for his weight. I’m always impressed. He also does push-ups and dips and l sits.

Until next week!

I post daily on Instagram you can find me at @balancingmybipolar

Renters, Brothers, Police, Oh My!

I love these cuties. They are so fun.

Funny story from cutie #2 today.

Me: I asked her if she wanted a little brother or sister.
Cutie #2: She said yes, a brother.
Cutie #2: do brothers pull hair?
Me: yes, and bite and push and wrestle on the floor sometimes.
Cutie #2: then I just want a baby sister.

Hahahah so funny. Poor girl has had to endure biting and hair pulling of late.

Today I went to Chick-fil-A and had a Cobb salad with their avocado lime dressing and grilled chicken instead of breaded. Oh my wow! It was delicious. I ate every bite. Yum!

It was a great option for eating out keto. Much better than other fast food salads. It was very low carb friendly.

It was a lovely way to end the day.

Earlier, I woke up from a nap to a police officer at my door. He had tried to call my cell I saw later.

He was checking on my renters story to see if it was true. He saw them moving things and stopped as they looked suspicious and he has helped me with my dogs before and didn’t recognize them.

The story checked out and he left. But what a kind thing to do. I love living in a small town. Thanks Santaquin police for watching out for us.

It was quite the exciting day. Very fun and we made many memories.