August 29, 2014

Found Poetry Friday: Little Things

Julia Abigail Fletcher Carney's Little Things

Little drops of water,
Little grains of sands,
Make the mighty ocean
And the pleasant land.

Thus the little minutes,
Humble though they be,
Make the mighty ages,
of eternity.

I haven't done this feature in quite some time, but I missed doing is a little poem I found this past week.  Did you find any little treasures this week?

August 28, 2014

How To: Thrive on an elimination diet

Although I am no expert, I thought I would share how our cooking life changed 6 months ago.  In attempt to find out the source of our little guy's tummy trouble, I was put on an elimination diet.  It didn't sound so bad at first.  As we got back in the car I reached for my snack of a cheese stick, almonds and a chocolate granola bar, and realized that I couldn't eat any of it.  What could you possibly eat if you can't eat animal-milk protein, nut, soy, fish & egg free diet or anything that contains trace amounts of it?!  Needless to say panic set in.  But I'm still here and thriving on this diet!

- animal-milk protein, nut, soy, egg, & fish free eating - 

Thriving.......yes, it is possible.

1.  Focus on what you can eat.  Ruminating on what you are missing makes this change seem option-less.  Fear not!  There are many options for you.  You won't be stuck eating carrots and hummus for every meal.  (although I did that basically for the first week month)

If you are on the same diet you can eat as much of the following as you want: (not a complete list)
- pesto tomato pizza homemade...happiness on a plate
- salad
- chicken (grilled, fried in olive oil, bbqed after marinated in Italian dressing, curried, sauteed over rice)
- beef (burgers, taco meat, steak, homemade meatballs, browned)
- any veggie you want
- any fruit you want
- PASTA and the jars of premade pasta sauce
- hot cereal (oatmeal, zoom, malt-o-meal)
- homemade bread (put some applesauce on top or jam or coconut milk and cocoa powder)
- lentils, beans, chili, garbanzo beans, hummus
- sorbet (check the label, few are actually dairy/soy free)
- tea!!
- coffee!
- potatoes (russet, red, yellow, sweet, yams)
- coconut milk (stock up. I mean cans and cans and cans and cans...)
- salsa and guacamole and Juanita's tortilla chips

2.  Find a few treats that work in your new diet.  Because more likely than not this was forced upon you, you need a special treat that only you get to have .  Here are a few delicious treats that I've indulged in over the past months.

- Chocolate milkshake  (inspired by the blogger Meals and Moves' Protein Shake, but tweaked for me. )
                             - 1 frozen banana broken into 4 pieces
                             - 1/3 can of coconut milk
                             - 2 or 3 Tbs cocoa powder
                             - 1/2 cup of cold water
                             - 1 or 2 tsp of sweetener (honey, maple syrup, stevia, sugar, etc.)  optional
                             Blend and savor...add less water to make it more like soft serve.

- Freezing grapes and banana slices are great little treats/snacks for hot days.
- Pesto tomato pizza saved me...
Mexican hot chocolate snicker-doodles...swap the milk for water (yum!)
Wacky cake (thank you creative, depression-era mamas!)

3.  Bring food with you wherever you go.  Often people forget/panic when they remember you actually can't eat anything on the table besides the plates.  Have a few filling "back up" items in your bag like carrots & hummus, fruit & a slice of homemade bread, applesauce etc.

4.  Find a vegan cooking pinterest board and be open minded.  No, you aren't actually eating vegan (remember you get to have meat!), but it will help you out with options for baking/eating/meal planning.  I found most of my treat recipes via vegan searches.

5.  If you don't normally, start cooking.  It is so much easier to control what goes in when you are cooking for yourself rather than eating out.  Start with simple meals, sauteed veggies & meat over rice, chicken tacos with lime juice (tip: use a rotisserie chicken for ultimate ease), spaghetti and baguette sprinkled with olive oil, garlic & basil.   Maybe you'll get fancy and start making falafel.  Don't all those things sound delicious?  Did you already forget you're even on an elimination diet?  If you need menu ideas, please check out my monthly meal posts here, here, and here.  Tip:  Most Italian, Mexican, Indian and Middle Eastern food isn't dripping in contraband food.

Know that this time will probably pass, and the likelihood of being allergic too ALL those things is rare.  When the time comes for adding in new things, it will be so special.  You can do this.  You can!

August 26, 2014


"Pictures of everyday once a week in 2014."
1. These apples are getting big, which means the season which cannot be named until September is almost upon us!!!
 2.  Playing at the lake, soaking in the summer sunshine.
 3.  A ridiculously blue sky and dandelion seeds.
 4.  I submit that this is the one of the best feelings ever...a little person asleep on your shoulder.

What things have been the highlight of your week this past week?

August 19, 2014


"Pictures of the everyday once a week in 2014."
1.These cheerful daisies and yellow buttons.
 2.  One day's garden harvest.  Yum!!!  Add to that several handfuls of basil and mint.
 3.  A little sleeping boy.
 4.  This beautiful cream moth sitting just on my doorframe.

What special things characterized your week?

August 18, 2014

Crystal Mountain Gondola

A few weeks ago, with family visiting, we visited Crystal Mountain nestled just outside the NE corner of the Mount Rainier National Park.  
Summer in the Pacific Northwest is absolutely gorgeous! 
This view is free of charge and can be seen outside the park as you skirt the Steven's Canyon Entrance of Mount Rainier traveling North towards Crystal Mountain.   Blue sky, green trees, sparkling white glaciers...
 During the summer, the lift to one of the mountain tops is open as well as the a restaurant...this is the view after clearing the first ridge.
 Little James loved the view, but some others were white-knuckling it the entire ride.
The view from the top was absolutely amazing.  Totally worth the ride.  Do you hear any singing?
 Because I'm pretty sure that some sort of crescendo-ing instrumental should be resounding.
 They even provided chairs for sunbathing/enjoying the view at the top.
Visiting Crystal Mountain is a must do.  Just be sure to literally beat off the chipmunks, they will run all over your bare legs, into your pack, or onto your lap.  They have no fear.  You've been warned.

Have you had a chance to get to the mountains this summer?