Seasons of Joy: All about the cake….

Ribbet collageSeasons of Joy

So, when I announced to the family that I was no longer buying in sugar or anything containing sugar, they weren’t too concerned.  They know me of old.  It wouldn’t last long.  And I agree, it probably won’t.  But it will have some sort of effect.

Do you remember when I gave up coffee to save money?  I even wrote my infamous ‘ode to coffee’.  I was spending waaaaay too much money on buying fresh coffee from the coffee shop a few meters from our house.  I wasn’t sleeping at the time and the coffee was what enabled me to get up, get through the day, whilst continuing to homeschool my children.  I really did consider it a need, but one we could not afford.  So I gave up.  It lasted about three months.  Not long and really rather pathetic, no?  But Gary bought me an inexpensive coffee bean grinder and coffee maker for my birthday and I have since enjoyed just two cups a day.  No more, no less.  And I spend about £3 a week on an organic coffee bean from Waitrose.  Yes, I could spend less but I adore the bean I use and I am willing to spend £3 a week on coffee.

My point, though convoluted, is this.  Giving up coffee may not have led to me actually giving up coffee but it did lead me to never needing to buy a fresh one from a coffee shop, it reduced the amount of coffee I was drinking in one day and saved me almost twenty pounds a week.  One drastic action had resulted in a less drastic but none the less healthier (for me and for my wallet) habit.  I sleep now and really don’t need coffee, but I still thoroughly enjoy two coffees a day.  They are a huge pleasure in my life and they are now guilt free.

So where am I going with this?  Gary and I decided that we had two major hurdles to our quest to be healthy and for me to conquer my food demons.  The first was crisps (this was Gary’s) and for me it was sugar, plain and simple.  We eat everything wholemeal, from bread to rice to couscous.  We also eat, in general a very healthy fruit and veg based diet.  But then there is the sugar.  It is only an issue after about four o’clock in the afternoon, bizarrely.  And is linked to screen time for all of us.

For the last wee while I have not bought sugar or sugar products into the house.  I have not missed them.  I am going to say that again because it is surprising although not altogether unexpected.  I have not missed the sugar at all.  I can feel God helping me.  My no is a no and my yes is a yes.  There is absolutely no verbal gymnastics going on with myself resulting in a final ‘ Oh, go on then, if you insist!’ (Does anyone else have conversations with themselves?).  My no is final and that is God.  When your no is a no, there is no room for a yes.  And this is a simple no, without any pomp and circumstance.  It is no big deal, which makes it easy 🙂

I had to laugh yesterday though.  We have just completed lesson four of our Bible curriculum ‘Who is God?’ and the children had been learning about world views and how they can be compared to cake:


C12, for whom having less sugar has been hard, squealed when she read the assignment:


‘Mummmeeeeee, we need some cake.  Chocolate cake.  It says so in our Bible workbook……..

……..I don’t think God wants us to give up sugar!’

I had to laugh.  After all, if God is for you, who can be against you?  I bought a small chocolate log and shared it among the children so they could carry out their assignment.  I chose not to have any.  In fact I didn’t even allow it to be up for discussion (between me, myself and I).  For now it’s no sugar for me (and myself and I) and its less sugar for the children.  You see, God is for us all and meets all our needs and sometimes, in C’s case our wants, even though they may be different.


  1. What a wonderful gift you are giving to yourself and the children. I am glad you are finding the strength through your faith to have will power.
    Blessings, Daw

  2. That really is so inspiring that you aren’t missing sugar. I just had lunch (healthy soup and a roll) and immediately afterwards craved something sweet. I’d love to not experience that craving.

  3. Love this post too :-). We decided to give up sugar a few weeks ago too, but we are trying not to be too legalistic about it :-).

    I so enjoy my coffee too and I am a “coffee snob” about what brand and blend I like….so bad. ( I tried to give that up in the fall, thinking that is what made me “flighty”, but guess what…..I am still flighty without coffee LOL!. )

    Chuckling at C12s reasoning ;-).

    Blessings to you and your family, Claire,


  4. Now I’m wishing I hadn’t grabbed that left-over slice of pizza to munch on as I read this 🙂 Phyllis is right, you are an inspiration – and God is truly amazing!

  5. Haha I love the cake story! Sugar is a big hurdle for me too, and I have spent the evening teetering on a decision to go and make hot chocolate and eat another cookie. Thanks to reading your post just now, I am going to resist!

    Your mention of saving money from your change in coffee habits reminded me – have I raved about You Need a Budget yet? It is the most fabulous budgeting software I have ever had, and I think it could be really helpful for your family not just for paying off debts and saving money but also for teaching the children about budgeting and finance. You can get a 34 day free trial and the full software is $60, which considering the average person apparently increases their net worth by $2000 in 9 months is not a lot!

  6. Chips and salsa, I adore chips and salsa and its variant chips and queso, and I’m trying to be good and not snack on that as much. It’s so hard.

    And I too have conversations with myself. I also have conversations with Jeff that I then hold him responsible for. I frequently have to ask if I actually talked about him over something.

  7. Ah, conversations with your self – I may be my most devoted conversationalist and the only one who truly listens to myself – yet like everyone else, often do something else! Like eat the sugar I’m trying to avoid. No doesn’t always mean no when it comes to cravings – yet! Good for you Claire, giving up sweets would be a huge hurdle for me, yet so rewarding!

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