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My Story about Wholesome Food


wholesomemommy.com

I’m Denise Sawyer, of WholeseomeMommy.com  I have a Masters in Education.  I am a teacher at heart and by occupation.  That is why I started this blog, to teach others all that I have learned about living a wholesome life.

I began my journey when I had my first child.  Like many moms, I wanted to feed my son the BEST foods.  I wanted him to be a healthy, adventurous eater without food allergies.  I started reading everything I could about REAL food and traditional diets…fast and furiously.  I devoured books like Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food, and Nina Planck’s Real Food: What to Eat and Why.

Armed with this information, I continued to read websites and blogs, hungry for more.  I began buying organic produce using the Environmental Working Groups lists of fruits and veggies according to their pesticide load {the dirty dozen and the clean fifteen}.  I purchased beef from a local farmer who raised his beef cattle on pasture – not corn.  I bought organic dairy products and humanely raised eggs.  I watched a lot of food network and read a lot of cooking magazines trying to figure out how to cook from scratch with real food.  I learned new methods for cooking that used good fats like grass fed butter, olive oil, and coconut oil.  I felt great about what I was doing and my son and my husband were becoming much more adventurous in their eating.  Real food tastes great!

Wholesome Food Means Life and Death

Then, on July 2nd, 2010 my husband was diagnosed with leukemia.  Our world was turned upside down.  I quickly, miraculously found peace thanks to God.  I prayed night and day for my husband’s health and our friends and family did too.  Eating healthy was no longer a fascination or hobby, it became more… it became life or death.  I visited the local Whole Foods store which was right down the road from the hospital where we were living.  Yes, living… for over a month.  I bought and prepared food from Whole Foods and continued to try to get healthy foods into my husband’s body whenever I could.  And, praise God, my husband was healed and received a clean bone marrow biopsy in December 2010.  He is cancer free.  The doctor where he was first diagnosed said he never expected him to recover.  But, praise God for a good doctor, good food, and a miracle, he is still here.

Passionate about Wholesome Foods

Now, I am a mother of two children.  And, I am more diligent than ever to feed myself and my family REAL, wholesome food.  Food from farmers not from factories.  I’ve continued my “Whole Food Journey” by sifting through the constant {and sometimes conflicting} research that is available including Rich Food Poor Food, by Jayson and Mira Calton, and other research from Weston A. Price.  I am convinced that America’s health problems,  including heart disease, obesity, and diabetes, largely come from our Western diet and overuse of chemicals, and I am determined to change the way we eat.  I started with my own family and now hope to continue by helping families all over the country by sharing all that I have learned and continue to learn.

I’m a Mom, Like You.  You CAN Do This

I am doing the BEST that I can.  I am not perfect but I am a life long learner.  I am a real mom… a busy mom just like you.  I know that there are a lot of moms {and dads} out there that WANT to feed their families well but life gets in the way.  That’s where I hope I can help.  I have done the research so you don’t have to.  I try to keep it simple.

Cooking food from scratch sounds tough, but it doesn’t have to be.  I cook dinner, from scratch, 5 to 7 nights a week and can get dinner on the table in 30 minutes or less on most nights.  I encourage you to check out my meal plans and recipes to help you realize you can do this too!  I don’t use ingredients that are difficult to find.  You can find what you need at a conventional grocery store, whole foods store, and/or a farmer’s market.

I live on a budget too.  Wholesome food can sometimes cost more.  But not always.  But even when it does, I believe I am making an investment in my family’s health, and besides, if you don’t spend it on your food you’re going to spend it on health care so why not invest it in wellness, proactively, not sickness, retroactively.  But, I believe by making informed purchases you can stay within your budget.  Eating wholesome and organic food isn’t just for the elite and those with frivolous spending habits.  Anyone can make it work for them and I’m here to help you find that way as I go along on my own “Whole Food Journey.”

Real Food. Real Simple

My stance on what to eat is pretty simple.  We eat REAL, WHOLESOME food.  The less processed the better.  I am not in favor of the latest health craze and I don’t forbid any REAL food.  We eat dessert.  When I make dessert I use wholesome ingredients – not mixes, processed ingredients, or margarine. Everything in moderation.  I’ve learned to read labels like a champ, I can find a fake health claim in a under a second, I know which eggs are best, which meat to buy, and where to find raw milk.   I can teach you all this too.

Quality.  Not Quantity.

But changing my diet has created a shift in my mind set, too.  I began to really think about the kind mom I wanted to be and other ways that I could better my family’s lives and environment – while saving money.  My new mantra has become quality over quantity and can be used to explain many aspects of my life from time spent with my family, purchases I make, things we do, and the type of foods that we eat.  I hope you’ll find my tips for wholesome living, wholesome fun, and my thoughts on raising a wholesome family inspiring and I hope you’ll share your thoughts and tips with me too!

If you find this blog helpful and know someone else that could use a little help too, I hope you’ll share this blog with them!

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Comments

  1. I am glad to hear your husband is cancer free, you don’t see or hear many people give their praise to the one who does the healing, GOD!! I have a question, how did you become a Walmart mom? I have a masters degree as well and a mother of 3 children. I am interested in cooking more healthy meals for my family. I would appreciate your help!

    • Denisesawyer says:

      Thanks Toni,
      I became a Walmart mom at the beginning of the program about 5 years ago. I was asked by the person in charge of the program after he came across my blog and I was recommended by a fellow blogger.
      Denise Sawyer

  2. Hello,
    I enjoy your website and would like to work with you!
    I’m interested in the price for a blog post with links! Could you please give me the general rates?
    I hope to hear from you soon! Thanks in advance.
    Kind Regards,
    Kira!

  3. Want to sign up for your email list but getting this message : The feed does not have subscriptions by email enabled

    • It resolved itself, thanks

      • Denisesawyer says:

        Christa,
        I am actually in the middle of switching apps that will be taking care of my email subscriptions. I am hoping everything will be up and running by the end of the week. I want to deliver the meal plan via email to everyone so I am having someone do some tweaking for me. :)
        Denise

  4. michelle downs says:

    do you know that your email link does not work when you click on contact me it show this.
    Not Found, Error 404
    The page you are looking for no longer exists. Perhaps you can return back to the site’s homepage and see if you can find what you are looking for. Or, you can try finding it with the information below.

  5. Hey – just wondering where you purchase your bulk foods…I am looking for bulk organic dry beans…..just wondering if you could help me! I really have enjoyed your website! Thanks for your efforts!!

    • Denisesawyer says:

      I am part of a co-op where i purchase a lot of dry goods. The co-op is from Something Better Natural Foods.
      They have a website you can check into – or if you are local to me, you are welcome to join my group.
      Denise
      Wholesome Mommy

  6. Samanntha Schwind says:

    hello, I subscribed and am finishing up my first week. I deleted the email that you sent with the first months plan….sooo, although I printed everything, I do not have it with me and therefore cannot really do much planning in my spare time here at work. I have gone through the website and even tried to subscribe again with no luck! lol Can you help, and if somehow it actually did subscribe me twice to the information, please only keep my email once so that I do not get everything twice..(other than this first month of info). And just to let you know, so far things have gone well and the kids love the recipes. I am only having issues with the water content of the recipes they call for much less than what I end up having to add.
    thank you for your efforts, they are greatly appreciated by us working, single moms!

  7. Bless you for reaching out to others with good scratch recipes. All the diseases we now have I am sure come from eating nasty stuff in boxes and quick fix meals. My mom cooked everything from scratch and I never knew what store bought meat tasted like till I married. My mom bottled everything in our garden and from our fruit trees plus we sold a lot of it for others to use. More and more people are looking for good recipes from the past & it is only through this type of cooking are we going to get back to being healthy.
    Glad your husband is better & I am happy to have found your site. God is always there for us if we but look for him.

    • Denisesawyer says:

      Thanks for your sweet message Alice!
      It means a lot that you took the time to comment here. <3
      Denise
      Wholesome Mommy

  8. I don’t know how to contact you. I couldn’t find an e-mail address, so hopefully commenting here will work! I would really like to get your recipes and meal plans for the real food on a food stamp budget series printed off. I have signed up already, and have received e-mails with links from you. Problem is, I live in a very rural area and don’t have internet access. I go to the library to use the computer. I am trying to figure out how to get the recipes and meal plans printed off from the library so I can use them at home but haven’t had any luck. Since I don’t have internet at home, I can’t just click on a link each time I need a recipe. I have a three month old baby, so I can’t spend a lot of time at once at the library trying to figure this out, copying and pasting and going back and forth between sites. (crying babies aren’t very welcome, imagine that, ha ha) Can you help? Thank you so much for doing this series! My husband only makes 8.50 an hour and I am at home with the baby. We qualify for food stamps but are trying very hard not to go that route, so I am really hoping your series will be able to help me change our meals around to more healthy ones. I’m trying to improve our health step by little step! It is hard when everything healthy is expensive…
    Anyway, if you can respond, that would be SO great! Thanks in advance for your help with this.

    • Denisesawyer says:

      Sorry for my slow response!
      I really don’t have a more condensed version. This is as condensed as I could get it. Sorry I am really no help at all. I knew there would be problems like this {with internet access, computer access, etc} and I’m looking for a better solution.
      Denise
      Wholesome Mommy

  9. Denise, I signed up for your OH Snap series. I received the first 3 emails, but they self distructed or something. After about a week, I went to open them up, and they no longer contained ANY information. Is this normal? I’ve never had anything like this happen to any of my other emails.

  10. I’m new here and wondered if you knew of any affordable (under $600 ) mattresses with no foam or gel or latex in them ?

  11. Hey I just found you blog and very interested in the real foods on a food stamp budget. Can you tell me how I can get copies of the meal plan and grocery lists from the past posts? I’m very interested in learning more. We buy groceries on a very tight budget and struggle to find how to buy real food for my families. After reading these posts I understand so much more and would love to see what you bought.

  12. Gardenpat says:

    So, I know your life has become much busier with the new addition, but just curious if you will ever put out the last two months of the Real Food on a Food Stamp Budget project? We have been using the first four and would be thrilled to see the last two months (5& 6) . Has that project been terminated?

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