Whole. New. Mom.
That's me up there in the funny green car with the men in my life.
My name is Adrienne and I am the voice behind Whole New Mom.
- a writer.
- a researcher (sometimes I research
way.too.much a lot.)
- whole food and healthy minded
- willing to admit when I am wrong.
- a real mom. Dealing with real health issues. Struggling to balance it all.)
What I Write About:
- Whole Food that is special diet and allergy-friendly: My recipes are all sugar free and adaptable to dairy free, egg free, and gluten free diets. Gradually I am incorporating grain free recipes as well and you might expect to see autoimmune recipes coming too. Sorta glad about that. Sorta not.
- Healthy, Non-Toxic Living: stuff like personal care, home care, etc. that is free of all the chemical ickiness that really makes me (and the whole world) sick. Got sensitivities? This is the place for you. Don't have 'em? This is still the place for you. 'Cause there are 82,000 chemicals being used in the U.S. alone. Ick!
Check out my posts on Amazing No Streak Glass Cleaner, Natural Dishwasher Rinse Aid and The Battle of the DIY Eye Makeup Removers - and The Winner for a taste of these kinds of things.
- Health topics: toxins, GMOs, autism, food allergies, special diets, essential oils - kind of "you name it". If it's in the health news, I probably have something to say about it--I just might not have time to blog about it :-).
- Frugal, Simple, and Sustainable Living: That means doing things quickly and without a lot of money or waste. My Easiest Coconut Milk is a great example of this.
All through my life I've been interested in healthy and healthy living. I was Pre-Med in college, but decided to change gears since I thought someday I might want a family and knew it would be hard to do both the way I wanted to.
We know that we should eat healthy food, care for our bodies, care for the earth, love our families (which includes our fellow man if you happen to not be married or have children), impact our world, and do it all on a budget and within the 24 hours that God has given us.
Tough assignment, especially for us perfectionists :-).
The reason why I started Whole New Mom was to share with others some of the things that I learned along this bumpy road of life.
A Little Bit About Me:
- Our oldest was born at home in Illinois - this was near the beginning of our healthy living experience. We completed a natural childbirth & pregnancy course under a leading home birth doctor who was a genius and his enthusiasm for natural living was contagious.
- I have 18+ years of experience researching healthy living, food allergies, and more. I studied nutrition while in college, but the experience that I have gained studying and living through our health issues has been invaluable. I've managed our oldest's life-threatening food allergies for 17 years, working closely for much of that time with a local expert in immunology.
- I'm an experienced teacher, which might come out in my love for sharing educational information. I tutored for over 7 years, taught in schools, and also taught overseas in Japan for one year on all educational levels--from elementary to adult. I was a cooking class instructor for a short stint and have led a few classes on gut health and personal care product safety on the local level. I also ran employee benefits meetings for a high powered insurance firm in a Chicago suburb for several years and taught options valuation theory at an international bank. At the same bank I ran their required entry level Options Training Course.
- Our first child was born at home and I am a strong advocate for natural parenting and breastfeeding. I was an active member of the La Leche League.
- I served on the board of the Weston A. Price Foundation, WAPF.
- I'm currently enrolled in the Aviva Romm Herbal Medicine for Women course as well as another online course where I am studying Detox, Anti-aging, Weight Loss and more.
- As a couple, my husband and I completed a NFP, Natural Family Planning, course, something which greatly influenced our understanding of hormones and the importance of protecting the delicate reproductive system in both men and women.
- Due to the food allergies and other health conditions, I've worked with many special diets over the years. My son is deathly allergic to dairy, egg white, peanut, most tree nuts, and sesame, so as a result I've become adept at cooking without those ingredients.
At various times in our lives, we've also tried the GAPS diet, paleo diet, AIP, THM, keto, gluten-free, vegan, and a little bit of whole30.
- We lived in Oklahoma for a brief period but now reside in Michigan. We had a different course planned for our lives, one that didn't include life-threatening food allergies, autism, or severe fatigue. But then, we aren't the ones in control of our lives.
- My husband is a full tenured English professor and we homeschool.
- I worked as a tentmaking missionary in Japan for 1 year and served in parachurch ministry throughout college. Interestingly enough, my husband taught in China for 2 years at the college level. We both sang with black gospel choirs in college. And LOVED it.
- I was pre-med in college and studied nutrition there as well. However, I am not a doctor. Remember that as you read my posts, please :-).
- I was an Echols Scholar at the University of Virginia with an Interdisciplinary Degree, graduated near the top of my class and am a Phi Beta Kappa member. I write this not to brag, but because some folks accuse me of not being interested in real research (check out the comments on that post) or even have gone so far to say that I am an idiot.
I don't appreciate that--let's talk civilly, folks :).
So, if you put all of the above into one person and add a lot of other things, you come out with the person behind this blog.
Where I Learned About Allergy-friendly Cooking
Most of what I learned has been sort of self-taught in the kitchen of Food Allergy Hard Knocks.
When our oldest was born with multiple life-threatening food allergies, I needed to figure things out, and fast.
We didn't have much money (we qualified for WIC at the time) and well, I needed to make things without eggs, dairy, or peanuts, and we soon had to add almost all nuts and sesame to the list.
I learned fast.
It's now been 19 years that I have been cooking this way.
And I must say, I kind of enjoy the challenge.
I also studied cooking in school, took an upper level nutrition course at The University of Virginia, have taken some local cooking classes, and have taught cooking classes both in the US and abroad.
My Frugal Living / Financial Background
Again, a LOT of this was learned in the "School of Hard Knocks."
For example, our family of 3 lived on an income of 12,500 for 1 year while my husband was finishing his PhD and we still made it through 2 master's and a doctorate without debt. Ask me sometime about our "ghetto food" and frugal date nights :-).
However, I also have a background in the financial services industry:
- I worked in the financial industry for 10 years including a stint on an equity options trading floor. Ask me sometime about my nickname "the hammer." My work included teaching Options Valuation Theory and trading at the Chicago Board of Trade at Swiss Bank Corporation, where I also was in charge of their Main Trading Course.
My students included bond, stock option, and futures traders, as well as bank executives.
- For 9+ years, I was an independent life, health, and disability insurance agent. I was a Senior Benefits Coordinator for a top insurance firm in the Chicago, IL area (Dann Insurance) in benefits where I led employee benefits meetings and made proposals to numerous corporate executives. Later on, I was in a management position in a small insurance firm in Deerfield, IL.
It's possible, however, that my highest accolade came from a financial planner who said to my husband after seeing our budgeting practices, "Do you know what a treasure you have :)?"
Where I've Been Featured:
I used to be a featured writer on The Better Mom and The Balanced Platter.
I've been featured in numerous places, most notably on:
Feedspot (Top Healthy Mom Blogs to Follow in 2018)
Culinary Nutrition (here and here)
Greatist (here and here)
Mamavation (Top 100 Healthy Mom Blogs to Follow)
The Nourishing Gourmet
Whole New Mom’s Medical & Technical Advisory Team
In an effort to be accurate with the health related articles found here on Whole New Mom, I am now working with the following advisors.
Throughout my site, you will see posts that have had their content approved by the following.
Dr. Stephen O'Connor
Stephen L. O’Connor, MD is the former Director of Emergency Medical Services at two major medical institutions. His experience includes three years of aeromedical flight experience as a flight physician. Dr. O’Connor is certified in Advanced Trauma Life Support, Advanced Cardiac Life Support, Advanced Pediatric Life Support, and a NIHSS provider. He was the Director of Emergency Medical Services for a University Paramedical training program. Currently, he is the Chief Medical Officer for the Salutem Health Group, an Integrative Medicine Clinic in Indianapolis, Indiana.
- Medical Doctor with over thirty years experience in Emergency Medicine.
- Professional interest in Integrative and Preventative Medicine.
- Ultra distance athlete. Completed seven Ironman Triathlon events, including two Ironman World Championship Triathlons in Kona, HI.
- Completed many Ultramarathons including the Leadville Trail 100 mile run.
- Multiple Medical Mission trips to Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, Guatemala, and Ecuador.
Dr. O’Connor’s interest in Preventative Health Care has given him a unique perspective in leading edge Medicine. His pragmatic and common-sense approach with his patients and clients provides creative health solutions. Cost containment and value solutions are his professional interests. As a medical consultant for WholeNewMom.com, Dr. O’Connor shares their mission to help others live healthier lives.
I forgot to mention one thing. I also am a reforming (emphasis on the "ing") Type A personality.
All my life I have pushed myself to do more, get straight A's, exercise enough, cook the right way, be with my kids enough, be involved at church enough, have a solid family life. You too?
One thing that has never been perfect about me is having a neat house. But that's probably because I am usually too busy with other things. I am thinking about starting a Messy Mom's Club at our church. If you clean before having friends over --you are kicked out :-).
But somewhere after Asperger's and before today, I crashed into the world of chronic illness, and now I am working my / our way through that.
We've been down many medical roads en route to better health. Some have worked, and some haven't.
So this blog may not be as busy as some others, simply because I need to stay healthy and sane.
I will probably feel guilty about it sometimes, but that too I am working on. When I go a few days without a post, you will know why. I am simply trying to take care of myself and not neglect my family.
The Car in the Photo
See the funny car up there? The car is part of our life too. The mascots from our favorite local ice hockey team drive around in it before each home game. See why we're so happy to be sitting in it? We got to go on a "backstage tour" of sorts of the hockey rink and this was part of the "tour."
According to my son, life without hockey would be--well--pretty rough.
Nice to Meet You!
Hope to see you around more and more!