But You’re a Family – What Do You Mean TEAM?!
Over the years that we’ve been running this blog, we’ve found that we simply just cannot keep up with everything we want to do with it. Try as we might, this is not a full-time job for us – in fact, Stacy’s full-time career is very demanding. As are the 3 blonde boys that Matt runs after all day long. There’s a house to clean, food to cook and children to care for all on top of writing cookbooks, interviewing with the media, running a podcast and keeping up with this blog. Admittedly, it’s gotten out of control for us and we’re attempting to find ways that we can still provide you with awesome content, but find more time for sleep…
The last thing we want is to burn out and run away from the internet hoarding cinnamon buns in a cave somewhere. And frankly, that’s where the stress probably would take us! So, we started the journey to simplify our website efforts when we kicked off our Guest Series and lined up fantastic bloggers to contribute at least one post a week for us to share with you all. We’ve been thrilled with the quality of posts they’ve been graciously providing, and with the wonderful support you all have shown for them as a result – thank you!
What Will this Team be Doing?!
So, our next obstacle was reviews. You probably don’t know this, but we get requested to review things for people several times a week. People want you to know about their product! Here’s the problems:
- We do not have time to test every product out there, including books, food and whosey-whats-its, then take photos of us using them and then write a post on it.
- Also, we figure you don’t want to have this blog turn into a product placement ad.
- And not lastly, not all of these products are things we’d actually endorse!
So for a while that meant we just flat turned out a lot of offers. Sadly, however, it meant that we missed out on learning about the few-and-far-between awesome products we do enjoy sharing with you all (like our Favorite Things posts). You would likely want to know when we discover something like dairy-free, grain-free, refined sugar-free fudge! As the e-mails piled up of things we wanted to try but were feeling too overwhelmed to even know where to start, an idea occurred to us! What if we asked our friends to help us? Fortunately for us, they said yes ♥
Now, these members of our “team” won’t just be focused on reviews. They’re also under going efforts to help make the blog more useful and up-to-date in general, with tags and sort functions that will greatly benefit our readers. Additionally, they also are helping to manage the administrative burden associated with an inbox that received hundreds of e-mails a week. They help coordinate our guest posters, manage the blog “schedule” and ensure that we maintain consistency of the blog you’ve become accustomed to.
Each of them has been following the blog for quite a while, knows our story, approach to paleo and has similar thoughts and beliefs – although each obviously bring their own thoughts as well. So, be on the look out for these awesome ladies and the content they’re contributing. Since we personally know each and every one, we have faith that they will deliver the honesty and openness paired with kind helpfulness you’re (hopefully) used to finding on our blog!
Aimee was part of our Vacation Team in 2012 and is the fantastic food photographer for Beyond Bacon. She and her family are good friends of ours and we’re happy to have her contribute her talents to the blog for you all to see! She is often our motivating cheerleader to try new things and incorporate many of the WAPF principals to our paleo approach – especially ferments and organ meats… she LOVES that stuff!
After a slow 6 year progression from vegan abolitionist to the vegetarian that looks the other way when there is chicken broth in rice, I finally got back to my roots as a steak lover two years ago. I added back meat and went low carb to lose weight after having two kids, but now I mostly worry about getting in obscure micronutrients and trying new foods. The health that comes with real food awakened my competitive nature. I was hardcore into ballet until I graduated high school; and I finally started working out again last year after being sedentary my whole adult life. I take dance, practice yoga, do Crossfit, bike with the kids in a trailer hitch behind me and run when it’s not freezing outside. My biggest wish is that I had discovered this lifestyle when I was 18, but I’m enjoying being in the best shape I’ve ever been in my life. My goal this year is to make and like kidneys since Stacy insists it cannot be done.
Aimee breaks up fights between two kids all day, but in between she ferments, exercises, and finds new weird meats to eat and instagram. Maybe you can find her at www.aimeebuxtonphotography.com one day blogging what she eats and what recipes she fails to make look like the photos in her cookbooks.
Amelia has guest posted for us before, and has since become a friend to our family after we met at a meat-up in our home. There’s a hilariously funny story about the way we met, but I’ll let Amelia tell that one when she’s ready. She’s also helping us with some new ideas for the site we think you’ll LOVE but haven’t had time to tackle ourselves… hope to share more information soon!
My passion for real food started early. Growing up, I spent almost all my afternoons with my grandparents. Gram was the everyday cook and was famous for her pies. Gramps was famous for his homemade soups and low-sugar baking. I remember making the rounds around town every day with Gram – the farmer’s market for fruit, veggies, and special treats, the fish store for the freshest salmon and shellfish, and the butcher counter at the local small grocery for only the best cuts of meat. I loved sitting down at our well-loved kitchen table, cleaning string beans or shrimp and talking about our day. Dinner was normally a simple piece of fish or meat broiled in the oven or grilled outside, a large helping of a seasonal vegetable, and a starch like rice, pasta, or potatoes. Baking with Gramps was not an everyday thing, but was a joy – learning how to precisely measure to get the best results was an invaluable skill my pharmacist grandfather instilled in me and I learned that not everything had to be sickeningly sweet to taste good.
My relationship with food took a turn as a pre-teen when I started to gain weight. I went to Weight Watchers Camp for the first time (of three) at age 10. I learned a lot of great skills that would serve me well later in life – to drink water as my primary beverage, to enjoy lots of salad, and that fitness can be tons of fun. But I also got my ticket on the dieting rollercoaster. I spent the next 20 years on and off of diets, gaining and losing weight in an endless and hopeless cycle.
The last five years were a transition as I investigated ways to stop the yo-yo dieting that was not permanently solving my weight issue and was the source of significant stress. Finding the Paleo lifestyle in early 2011 was a relief. It put all my struggles with food, my weight, and my self-image into a context that made sense. Eating and living this way has not magically solved all my problems but has given me a framework for how to take better care of myself and work at improving my health above all else instead of focusing on the size of my pants.
I enjoy cooking real food for myself and my wonderful husband, getting back to the joy and passion I shared with my grandparents as a kid. I am excited to be joining the Paleo Parents’ team as a product and book reviewer now that we plan to grow our happy family of two to include some kiddos in the near future. You can find out more about me in my Guest Post or visit me at Amelia’s Healthy Life.
I met Kari many years ago at a previous employer for us both. We had a lot in common, what with our repetitive weight struggles and leaning toward Weight Watchers. Before talking to Kari on Facebook, the last time she’d seen me I was pregnant with Wesley and in the worst health of my life. It was quite a leap of faith for her to switch her ways of thinking about food, but I’m so glad she did (and just goes to show that if you can find kind and subtle ways to talk to people about this it might actually make a difference)! Now she’s got the coolest named blog and I’m happy to been part of her journey!
Hi! My name is Kari, I am 29 years old, and live in Chantilly, Virginia with my husband and precious beagle, Rallo. I am obsessed with food (and wine) and have started blogging at Long Live Lard! Growing up, I was always larger than the other kids. I did not start trying to do anything on my own about my weight until after college. My sister had success with Weight Watchers so I gave it a try. I lost about 30 lbs but I was always hungry! I slowly stopped following the plan and quickly gained back all the weight (and then some).
Me at 212 lbs in April 2011 Me at 208 lbs in December 2011
Before I knew it I was 212 lbs, all of my clothes were tight, and I felt defeated. In December of 2011, I decided to try Weight Watchers again. I had lost a small amount of weight but I was frustrated by the counting and constant number monitoring. One day I was complaining about the “points” value in a tablespoon of peanut butter and Stacy told me that there was an easier way to lose weight while getting healthy. She challenged me to cut out sugar and processed foods for 30 days to see how I felt. I accepted this challenge in January 2012 and have not looked back! I have cut out grains, sugar, and processed foods and my body has never been happier! Today, I weigh 172 lbs but I have a ways I’d still like to go.
Me at 179 lbs in July 2012 Me at 172 lbs in December 2012
I love reading about nutrition and food, trying new recipes, and finding ways to make my body healthier while helping others on their journeys. I am elated to gain more real food knowledge through helping Matt and Stacy with product and book reviews!
Maggie Fazeli Fard
Maggie was the first member of the Paleo Parents Team. She is the awesome force behind all of the drop down menus and categories now available to you (take a peek at the top menu bar under Recipes for the super simple sorting you get now!). We met Maggie through our meat-up and despite having an odd number of things not in common, we just hit it off! Must be her intoxicating smile and exuberant love of life.
Maggie has her own blog, MeEqualsOne, and is a writer for WashingtonPost.com. After finding the Paleo lifestyle through Crossfit she is working the mainstream media to recognize our awesome real foods movement. Maggie has a number of future guest posts scheduled, to include her unique perspective as a single girl living the lifestyle. In the meantime, check out some of her awesome articles on WashingtonPost:
- Confessions of a recovering diet food junkie
- Book promotes ‘Paleo’ eating plan based on diets before processed foods
- Cooking for kids with cancer
Hello my name is Anne & I am addicted to food.
Kidding! I just believe in living to eat vs. eating to live. My husband was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis over 10 years ago and we’ve made lifestyle changes because of that. Roughly a year ago we became aware of the Paleo Diet and the health benefits that come from it. I won’t lie & say that we jumped on board & didn’t look back. It has been a rocky path with ups & downs for us, but we made the decision that our health & well-being were of utmost importance.
Fortunately I love to cook (as does my husband) and we have friends that are very creative in the kitchen. All of the “deprivation” I thought I would suffer from hasn’t happened! I have a 5 year-old who is quite adventurous in his eating habits & naturally chooses fewer grains. We’ve started a blog to try & keep ourselves accountable (http://adayinourpaleolife.com/) as well as having a place where we can keep track of the yummy meals we make.
I am passionate about sourcing as much of our food as I can from local farms with sustainable farming practices. I run a number of local co-ops and am one of the administrators of the DC Metro Co-Ops & Meat Shares group on Facebook.
Monica joined the Paleo Parents Team through a desperate call for help from us. Up to the task of helping to manage and organize the chaos of communication during the launch of Beyond Bacon, she now assists with The Paleo View and show note preparation. Monica’s charisma, humor and down-right adorable smile (not to mention flattery) enamored Stacy to her – and if you enjoy this blog we probably have a bit in common… so I bet you’ll get a girl-crush on Monica soon, too! Make sure you follow her blog and social media noted below so you don’t miss a thing ♥
Raised in a full-on hippy house, I was taught to love the land and the animals that feed from it. From old school hog butcherings to berry farm harvesting treks, my parents showed us that health began with food choices. However, my teen years brought me down a rebellious path with food and I began to struggle with the world of weight-gain, yo-yo diets, and eating in secret. It wasn’t until my husband nudged me in the direction of the Primal Blueprint that I learned how to break my unhealthy cycle.
While pregnant with my son I ended up reintroducing the very things my body hated. However, when we began solids with our baby my lifelong education on eating for health clicked into place. My husband, who also struggled with weight issues since childhood, and I, made the choice to adopt the very lifestyle we wanted to give our son. We permanently kicked the grains, legumes, and excess sugar to the curb and never looked back.
Now I am carving out my own hippy life and learning how to raise a paleo family in our modern-day grain and sugar crazed world. I can be found at frommyplate.com as well as Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest.
Hi there! I’m Katy, the newest member of the Paleo Parents team. I learned to cook when I was very young, and I have loved food and entertaining ever since. My passion became my profession after I graduated with a culinary degree from Le Cordon Bleu, and I have since worked in restaurants for ten years. Along the way, I packed on the pounds, and in 2011 I went on an extreme elimination diet, lost 65 pounds, and discovered that I was intolerant to gluten, and also sensitive to dairy, corn, and sugar. I started eating Paleo shortly after, and I found that not only was it a way for me to maintain my weight-loss, but also a way to heal from a variety of health problems I had, including chronic migraines, acid reflux, depression, anxiety, and adult acne. I have also found that following a Paleo lifestyle is a great way to manage PCOS, and hopefully (down the road) avoid costly fertility treatments when my handsome husband, Ian, and I are ready to have some Paleo babies!
In 2012 I started a small little Paleo food blog called Honestly Delicious, and I have been so blessed that it attracted enough attention to bring me opportunities such as working for the Paleo Parents! You can follow me on Instagram and Twitter where I am known as the paleokatybird.
Courtney lives with her husband and two boys in the suburbs of Washington DC. She stays busy homeschooling her boys, ages 8 and 6, coaching CrossFit, and competing in Olympic Weightlifting. Courtney loves being a part of the Paleo Parents team, especially when she’s asked to taste test recipes!
Bonus photo for all of you still around… here’s (part of) your team out to dinner without shame or embarrassment of our henna-hair!
Please give the team a warm welcome and check back on the Paleo Parents Team page for soon-to-be-added members!