Friday, August 29, 2008

Fabric organizing

I spent all day yesterday going through just 1 shelf in my closet. I couldn't believe it took all day. I didn't realize I had that much fabric. I don't even know how I accumulated so much purple fabric either haha! Here is a before picture of the mess.

Here is a shot of how I folded it and you can see how messy the stacks were because I pulled it out as it was and placed it on the ironing board so you can see what a mess it was in the closet.

And here is the result after hours of work.

If I had just put it away properly to begin with I would not have had to take all day to do this. Hopefully I will keep it this way but I won't hold my breath. It's nice to have them stacked according to color too, much easier to see what I have and need.

And just so you can see how big the kittens are getting.

They are pains in the butts some times but entertaining to watch.


Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Look who's mobile!

Yep, that is THE pink slip. Beware Michiganders, Susan is mobile. She is now allowed to sit behind the wheel of a 4,000 pound weapon going 55 miles an hour! ACK!

You know I'm just kidding. She actually did well driving home from the meeting. She just needs to practice more. This is the first step in the Michigan graduated lincese program. I think it's a good idea, the only problem is we have to go to the Secretary of State at least 3 times! That place sucks and thanks to our state we now only have 1 to go to in the whole county, so you can imagine the wait time. Oh well.

Well as you know we have goats and Susan uses them for fair and fair time is almost upon us. We are about 3 weeks and counting and our goat club has an old banner that they have entered for judging for, it's been determined, about 15 years! I figured that when I saw it. I remember my mom using some of those fabrics in the 80's. Anyways I have volunteered to make us a new one. I figured it was a good jump back into my sewing and painting creativity. So I've been working on it for several weeks and it is now done except for the binding and sleeve which I will finish today. It also needs some flowers added to it which I will do tomorrow as I am taking it tonight to show to a few people. Here is a picture of the one they have been showing for over 15 years.

And here is the new, updated banner.

One of the kids drew the goats and Susan cut everything out and decided on placement, fabrics and painted the grass and sky background.

I also wanted to mention what I made for dinner last night. I made the Fresh Corn Chowder recipe from the Fix it and Forget it Lightly cook book and converted it to gluten free, dairy free, soy free, onion free, and there's some thing else but I can't remeber it right now. Ha! Anyways it is delicious and will be made again and often. It would be great with chicken or ham or bacon added too but was great as is. you really need to try it. Too bad it was eaten up before I could take a picture. I'll take one next time.


Saturday, August 16, 2008

Pulse Fest

We went to World Pulse Fest today with Susan's youth group. It's always a good time and had some good bands. We saw....

C 3
Mandisa (from American Idol)
Toby Mac
and the first song of Casting Crowns.

Susan stood in line most of the day for C 3 and Skillet's autograph. She said all the people from Skillet's band were really nice and talked to her except their female guitar player. She signed her poster and kind of threw it back at her without saying a word. Talk about rude! These kids are the ones who buy their music and make them popular and for her to be like that is disappointing.

Susan stood in line all day and Dan was doing this....

Yeah......I'm serious.

I don't know how he can sleep anywhere. We had a speaker right in front of us. Susan can sleep like that too. It must be genetic. He didn't sleep all day though, it was more of a quick nap.

So, I have to say my favorite band was Skllet although I am disappointed to now hear how the one member was but they were still good. Here's a few pics of them. They look like tiny ants right.

Susan's favorite was Toby Mac. These pics are ones she took from her camera as she was much much closer than us.

He is one brave guy. At the end of his set he jumped into the crowd twice.

These are pics of the C 3 band. Susan took them when she got their autograph.

Unfortunatly Skillet would not let her take a picture. It was either autograph or picture but not both.

Hummmm......maybe they are a bit big for ther britches huh.

A picture of Susan and Loren just for fun.

Now here is some thing exciting for you celiacs out here. If you have one around you Nelsons Porta Pit is Gluten free, soy free, dairy free, MSG free and a whole long list of allergin free. And their potatoes are only the best ever! So if you see one on the side of the road for a charity (that's what they are usually set up for) pull over and give them a try. You will not regret it.


Thursday, August 14, 2008

Crock pot inspiration

I've been reading a blog called a year of crock potting lately. I don't know blog etiquette as far as linking to another blog so I won't but you have got to check out this site. Not only does she have fatastic crock pot recipes but she is gluten free! It's a Celiac's dream come true. Her blog has inspired me to get my crock pots out and use them at least once a week. Last week I tried a recipe of mushroom soup from her blog. Here's what I used.

And here is the soup after putting it all together.

Unfortunatly I didn't take an after picture but the soup was pretty good. The only problem for me was I used too much italian seasoning in it. I tend to over estimate my spices some times. I also added cornstartch at the end to thicken it up a bit. I will be making this again.

I got my blood test results from the doctor Tuesday and found I have a vitamin D deficency so am now on a supplement. I also saw my internist today and she said she is leaning towards fibromyalgia (I hope I spelled that correctly) as the cause to a lot of my pain so I am now on a new med to see how it works. I'm starting on a very low dose and will work up from there since I am pretty sensitive to meds.

Well, not too much more news going on. I am working on a project for the goat club but I have been so tired lately that I haven't done too much on it. I did get the canvas cut out and hopefully tomorrow I will get started on the painting. I have about a month to get it done. That is very doable. I've also been trying to clean up the house bit. It can be difficult so I do a little and sit, do a little more then sit. I'm not sure where this even more extream fatigue is coming from but it sure makes things difficult for me.


Saturday, August 9, 2008

Gluten free chocolate cake

I made a nice gluten free chocolate zucchini cake and it turned out pretty tasty. I used the recipe on the back of the Hershey's tub and added the zucchini at the end. I used Bette Hagmans Bakers Secret frosting. There is some thing about that recipe that I really like.

Looks good right. It tasted good too.

In the garden we've been harvesting a ton of cucumbers, zucchini and tomatoes. So many that I cannot eat them all my self so have been sharing with my mom.

I haven't been getting much of my crafts done lately but plan on scrap booking with my mom tomorrow so will get some of that done and am planning on starting some work on some cross stitched Chrstmas ornaments.

I saw the rheumatologist Wednesday and we are waiting on some blood test results before we start a course of action on the inflammation in all my joints. He thinks it may not be an arthritis situation at all but a low Vitamin D and me not responding compleatly to the celiac diet. I've asked about the D deficency on a few list's and while it may be possible, I have been taking the same amount of D for over a year as those who have been diagnosed severly deficient and my symptoms are the same so I will be interested in hearing those results. I'm sure it will be in normal ranges but we will see. I had blood drawn for other tests too and a course of action was laid out for the different scenerios on what the blood says. It should be interesting.


Tuesday, August 5, 2008

See how big they are now?

My goats that is. Just some updated pictures of how big my goats have gotten. You can see pics of them as babies in my very first post on this blog.
This is Mimi. She will be Susan's showmanship goat.

This is Miss Priss. Mimi's comapnion and an open class goat for Susan.

This is Waffles. He is Susan's market goat and will be sold at fair and most likely will end up in some ones freezer. I am looking forward to him not coming back. He would not be a good pet for some one as he is a bully who constantly jumps up on me and tries to head butt me. He has been sucessful a few times and I am fed up with him.

Just a little over a month until we go to fair. I'm hoping to be in tip top shape by then (fingers crossed). I see the RA doc tomorrow so we'll see what happens. It will probably be another long haul.

I've been looking for paint colors for the living room, dining room and kitchen. We need to replace the french doors and flooring and since we need to do that we may as well paint. I've been looking at some bright colors. Dan's not really fond of some I've shown him but said he will live with whatever I choose. I've been looking for some thing nice and bright since I've been so down lately it would be nice to have some thing cheerful on the walls. We'll see though, I don't want to paint some thing Dan will hate. I've been thinking about painting our bedroom and my sewing room too but he doesn't know about that yet, hahaha!


Monday, August 4, 2008

Gluten free chicken strips

Actually gluten free, soy free and dairy free and who knows what else. These strips are what I make when I'm in the mood for fast food. I fried up some potatoes that I cut into fries and then made the breading for the strips while I defrosted them in the microwave. The breading consisted of...

1 cup of Better Batter Flour

Tony's Cacheres Seasoning to taste

Pepper to taste

That's it! Easy as pie and delicious. I liked this better than using Zantaraine's seasoning if only because it coated the chicken better and fried up better. Some one mentioned they made theirs this way on the sillyak list on Yahoo and I thought it was worth a try.

Looks tasty right?

2 days and counting until my appointment with the RA doctor. I hope I get help and am not disappointed. I've heard a lot of talk on a Yahoo group for arthritis about those who have had to go from doctor to doctor to find one that can help them. I really hope that is not going to happen to me. I guess I am just nervous. I hope this isn't going to be a long haul like the Celiac diagnosis was. We'll see.


Saturday, August 2, 2008

Coconut milk yogurt success!

Yesterday I experimented with making a gluten free, soy free, dairy free yogurt using coconut milk. I read a few recipes on line and decided to wing it. So I got out my yogurt maker....

I love this yogurt maker. When I bought it I opted for this one because of all the individual jars. I really liked that feature and enjoy using it.

Here are the ingrediants I used.

The only difference is I decided not to use the xanthan gum because I noticed the coconut milk had guar gum in it already so wanted to see what would happen. I did add a little bit of sugar also which I will leave out next time. The only thing I wasn't sure about was the probiotic I chose to purchase. It wasn't a yogurt starter but it was a freeze dried powdered multidophilus, the same stuff in yogurt so I figured it would work just fine. And work fine it did. I let it incubate for about 8 hours and it thickened nicely. It tasted delicious! I let it cool in the fridge for several hours and added some nice fresh blueberries and it was great. I was suprised at how much it tasted like coconut. I do like my yogurt a touch thicker so next time I will add some xanthan gum to see what that does for it.

Looks good right. The only thing I wonder about is if my probiotic was still living in it and if I was still getting the benefit it provides. I don't know a whole lot about yogurt making yet so I guess I need to look into it but the fact that it thickened nicely I think may have ment it was.

In the oven right now is a peach cobbler that I also decided to wing. We'll see how that turns out.


Friday, August 1, 2008

Gluten free cooking

Lately I've been cooking as much as I can. These days standing for long periods of time bothers me too much so I've been working on some of my recipes that take awhile to cook. First up is the delicious pinto beans I made. I can not believe how good these turned out with just a few simple ingrediants.

Pintos and Rice

Soak a pound of pinto beans over night. Make sure you rinse them and pick out any stones.

The next day drain and rinse soaked beans and place in large pot and cover with water by a few inches and cook for and hour and a half.

After the hour and a half add the salt pork, salt, pepper, garlic powder and whatever spice you are in the mood for and you will probably need to add several more cups of water at this point. I also shook in some worchestire sauce and Franks Red Hot sauce. Probably a few tablespoons or more of each. Cook for several hours more. I never keep track of time I just cook until the water has cooked down to a nice thick broth and beans. I then took out the salt pork and shredded off any pork meat and added it back to the beans and made some nice Jasmine rice in my rice cooker. I spooned out beans on a plate and topped with some rice and cut up a raw onion to eat with it. Wala! Delicious beans and rice. Next time I will try it with red beans but for some reason those are hard to find around here. I've also since making this realized that I am not tolerating raw onions at all right now so no raw onion for me next time. You could also fry some potatoes to eat along side instead of the rice. I have done this in the past but wanted it a little more healthy this time although brown rice would have been even better.

Also, today I am making coconut yogurt and I made a whole chicken and some soup with goodies from my garden. See my haul from the garden.

I will post how those turned out another day. The yogurt has an hour to go yet and the soup I haven't tried yet so can't report on the taste. I flew by the seat of my pants on that one. Hopefully tomorrow will be a baking day and I will get a peach crisp made with peaches from a local farmers stand and a zucchini cake made with zucchini from my garden and my beloved Better Batter Flour.

I did want to report in on the turkey nuggets I made for our night at the drive in. First I will say that Step Brothers movie was one of the worst I've seen in a long time and Hancock was hyped up to be better than it actually was.

The nuggets were good but it did not curb my craving for fast food chicken strips. Since being gluten free and not being able to eat out very often due to limited food choices and not trusting that it will be made properly whenever I am in the mood for fast food I fry up some chicken strips and roast some potatoes in the oven. Yum! I will be making that this week because chicken strips are on sale this week. Here's a pic of the nuggets.

Off to the store!