Wednesday, July 13, 2016

My Etsy shop, post-colonoscopy and some odds & ends

Did you know that I have an Etsy shop? Well, I do! I make wampum shell pendants from locally collected wampum shells. Please check it out at https://www.etsy.com/shop/CapeCodDragonShells?ref=hdr_shop_menu. I added a few new pendants today. Please feel free to share all over the internet as well.

Otherwise, I am doing well. I'm recovering from my annual colonoscopy yesterday. Yes, I am young (33), but I have Lynch Syndrome, aka hereditary nonpolyposis colorectal cancer/HNPCC. It's an inherited disorder associated with an increase in the risk of colorectal cancers, as well as cancers of the stomach, small intestine, gallbladder, liver, upper urinary tract, brain, skin, ovaries and endometrium, and throw some occasional colon polyps in the mix too. It's a whole barrel of fun (sarcasm font!) but it is easily dealt with by keeping on track with colonoscopies, upper endoscopies, PAP smears, endometrial biopsies, urine screenings, and a slew of lab tests. If you want to know more about Lynch Syndrome there are LOADS of websites, but I like this one overall: http://lynchcancers.com/. If you have a family history of colon cancer, please get tested. It can save your life!

So, I did the colonoscopy prep (Suprep) as usual and it sucked as it always does. I had lots of water, juice, popsicles, lollipops, hard candy, and tea w/o milk, even though I use dairy-free milks. I took a Udi's Gluten Free blueberry muffin with me JUST IN CASE the center did not have any AGAIN, which they didn't. SO glad i brought my own. Ridiculous. I went for my appointment, had a huge kerflufflle to deal with, but I did get the procedure done and I am a-okay this round. I came home, took a 4 hour nap, made some Rice Ramen and finished season 3 of Bitten on Netflix (on Syfy here).

In the evening I found myself CRAVING mashed potatoes, so TJ and I went to the store and got some, along with a nice organic, grass-fed steak. I approached the steak with caution as I had not cooked grass-fed beef at home. A Google search led me to one of my favorite blogs, Primally Inspired, and her easy-to-follow guide, found HERE. I made some pre-spiralized butternut squash noodles and it was all fantastic. The steak was perfect.
See? Tasty!

Today I slept in, made myself a yummy breakfast of gluten-free waffles, a hard-boiled egg, strawberries, and my favorite breakfast sausages.  (My favorite sausages are Applegate's GF Natural Chicken & Maple sausages, link is HERE.). I added some new items to my Etsy Shop (see the 1st paragraph of this blog post) and am now considering lunch with a bearded dragon on my lap.

The internet gave me some great new books to download, mostly freebies, which I have shared on Pinterest today: follow me on Pinterest.

Oh, the Rice Ramen I mentioned is made by Lotus Foods. I had Buckwheat Mushroom for the first time and it was just what I needed. Link for that is HERE.

Don't forget you can find me on Facebook Twitter, and Instagram.

Love, love, love, Kate



Saturday, July 9, 2016

Some sweet treats, Brazilian cheese bread, and reminder about GF & AF expo!

Hi folks! It's been a bit, again, and I'm sorry...life, you know? But the semester is over and I am back to just working 2 jobs. (how do professional bloggers DO THIS?!).

Here are a few products I tried in the last month or so.


  • Mom's Organic Munchies are DELICIOUS. They are gluten free, free of refined sugar, and paleo friendly! I have found them at Whole Food Stores and some local alternative grocery stores. The Skinny Mint cookies are a healthier alternative to Thin Mints (I know some of you are Thin Mint addicts). Moms Munchies products




  • Last week I made a simple gluten-free Indian meal out of Tasty Bite's Channa Masala, Wildwood's Baked Tofu, Royal Thai (which IS gluten free according to the packaging), jasmine rice, and mixed veggies. Oh so good and easy peasy.
            Tasty Bite Channa Masala
           Wildwood Foods organic-sprouted baked tofu royal thai



  • I found 2 flavors of the Brazi Bites brazilian cheese breads at a local Brazilian market, for wicked cheap! I had only tried the Original, and loved it, so when I saw Garlic Asiago and Nitrate-free Bacon I had to try them. These are yummy, gluten-free, Non-GMO, little balls of scrumptious, cheesy bread, and they are SO worth it. They're super easy to make too. No defrosting required! I like to pair them with just about any home-cooked meal, especially spaghetti and meatballs.

           Find them at http://www.brazibites.com/products/. The site has a Store Locater and links to                  buy them on-line. If you're gluten-free and miss Brazilian cheese bread, find these and give                  them a try.

Also, I'm going to take this moment to remind you about the Gluten Free & Allergen Free Expo that is coming up in Worcester, MA, on July 23-24th. Here is the website for more info:  http://gfafexpo.com/locations/worcester-ma-2016/#when-where

I still have 5 FREE TICKETS to give away! Please contact me if you are interested! And there are still 20% off tickets (use code ADVANCE through 7/22). I will be attending the Sunday day only but I hope to see some readers there!

Anyway....love, love, love
Kate



Cook's Organics Sweet Dreams Foot Cream is amazing!

But don't take that from just me (channeling LeVar Burton here). Head over to the website HERE and check out 1 of my favorite products ever, Cook's Organics Sweet Dream Foot Cream. This stuff is absolutely fabulous and I try very hard to not go without it.

Why do I love it? Well, first off you need to know that I work at a local health food store (the Orleans Whole Food Store). Cookie is a local who I *believe* started selling this stuff at the Wellfleet Farmers Market. One of my coworkers suggested it be brought into the shop. This same person convinced me to try it out so I picked up a sample size (these) and gave it a whirl.

The packaging isn't showy or over-the-top. Instead it comes with this little card that tells the consumer what some of the benefits are, such as "reduce leg/foot cramps; reduce workout recovery time; sleep like a champ", gives you Cook's website and lists the ingredients on the back. The product itself comes in a little white tub.

So what IS this stuff? Well, it's a magnesium foot cream. The other ingredients include coconut oil, shea butter, beeswax and aloe. It smells a bit like coconut oil and beeswax and is a white, creamy substance.

But this stuff is fantabulous. (yes, I know, this isn't a real word). I use it every night to help alleviate insomnia, which I have suffered from for YEARS, muscle cramps and spasms in my calves, and overall muscle relaxation. Believe me, it helps. And if I forget to use it, I know; my body reminds me. I recommend it to EVERYONE that I can.

Do you suffer from insomnia? Try this.

How about Restless Leg Syndrome and/or leg cramps? Please try this! I do NOT have leg cramps at night if I use this cream.

Fibromyalgia? Yep ,you need this. Trust me.

Are you a runner/jogger/exercise enthusiast who is always looking for something to help your body? Try this! Seriously, TRY this.

Where do you get it? The website for one: http://www.sweetdreamsfootcream.com/shop/. The Orleans Whole Food Store in Orleans, MA, carries it. (other places might too, but I am not sure).

AND right now, until Monday the 11th, you can get 40% off with BIG40 coupon code.
One more time, you can find this product here:
http://www.sweetdreamsfootcream.com/shop/sweet-dreams-foot-cream-trial-size-3-pack

OR the larger size here:
http://www.sweetdreamsfootcream.com/shop/sweet-dreams-foot-cream-4-oz

I cannot express how much this stuff has helped me. You should try it for yourself.


**I am in NO way compensated for this blog entry. I genuinely love this stuff and want everyone to use it.**

Wednesday, June 29, 2016

upcoming Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo in Worcester, MA + giveaway

Hi readers! I wanted to pop in and inform you of the upcoming Gluten Free & Allergen Friendly Expo that is occurring at the DCU Center-North Exhibit Hall, in Worcester, MA, on July 23 & 24th. I went last year and had a blast, so I MUST go this year. I got to meet lots of great bloggers and spokespeople for fabulous companies, and ate A LOT OF FREE FOOD!


The Expo has been kind enough to give bloggers 5 FREE tickets to the event. If you are interested please reply below. :) AND, if you miss the FREE TICKETS then you can still get 20% off w/ code ADVANCE (thru 7/22)! 

Here are ALL the social media links:

https://www.facebook.com/gfafexpohttps://twitter.com/gfafexpohttps://instagram.com/gfafexpo/
Go check them out! Plus there are other Expos all over the country, listed on their webpage. 

love love love, 



http://goo.gl/ZRDpgQhttp://goo.gl/it0SM4http://goo.gl/jYr1zMhttp://goo.gl/3xeZpFhttp://goo.gl/v6yGE7

And DON'T FORGET to hit REPLY and enter to win FREE TICKETS to the Worcester Expo 7/23 & 7/24! 

Kate 

Monday, June 6, 2016

Update, making your own kombucha,and Neil Gaiman

Hi! It's been awhile and I apologize for that. But, here I am. It's June and the summer has been, if not officially, as its 70-odd degrees here, the birds are going nuts and the Gypsy Moth caterpillers are eating all of our trees.

Some updates for ya:

*I'm working full-time and taking a Pharmacology Calculations course at the local community college, hence why I have neglected my blog. Time is short.

*I still haven't been taken off the wait-list at the 2 schools I applied to, which is good, I guess, but bad because I haven't been accepted yet and the WAIT IS KILLING ME! >< I can't make any long-term plans until I know about school and they have until September. UGH.

*My health is fair. Meds have been changed, PT for my back starts soon, and life goes on.

How about some talk of food, as this is a food blog? Lol. I picked up some O'doughs Gluten Free Flax Bagels at my local Shaws last week. Never heard of em? Me either. I wonder if its because it's a Canadian company. Anyway...

They are frozen, whole bagel thins. They cut easily with a bread knife once thawed. I was skeptical, as I always am about gf bagels, but these are great. Plus, the 1st bag I bought had a $1 coupon inside it! These flax bagels are soft, doughy, and toast very well. I like to eat them toasted with almond butter (I'm currently using Justin's Maple Almond butter) and raspberry jam. Such a good on-the-run-to-work breakfast!

Here is O'Doughs website http://odoughs.com/products/. Their products are also available at the Gluten Free Mall, Check out their website and product list because there is a LOT more available than just bagels!

Kombucha

The post title mentions making your own Kombucha. Well, I am doing that now! What is Kombucha? Well, it's a fermented tea drink that has a SCOBY (symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast; apple cider vinegar like Bragg's, also has a mother). Basically it contains tea, sugar, and water. I made it when I live in Providence, RI, and forgot about it, so I had to discard my SCOBY then. At work we sell several kombuchas, from GTS/Synergy and Katalyst, both of which are great, but at about $4 a bottle an expensive habit. So the solution is to make my own. A regular customer makes his own and he brought me a SCOBY mother, which I set to brew last Sunday. This morning I skimmed off some of the tea and bottled it with mango puree, to get somewhat close to my favorite kombucha, Synergy Mango.

Why does anyone want to drink this? Well, there is some debate about its benefits, of course. Kombucha popped up in the US in the 1990s, but the origins are probably Japanese. Kombucha is full of awesome probiotics and gut bacteria, such as Saccromyces and Gluconacetobacter xylinus
It's been touted as having all sorts of benefits, such as curing AIDS, cancer, diabetes, and boosting the immune system. These are unfounded and untested. BUT it's very tasty. I like to use it because 1) it's tasty, 2) it seems to help with my gut, and 3) I like it!

LOTS of resources (mostly pro, sorry):
http://whatiskombucha.com/
http://www.motherjones.com/blue-marble/2010/11/kombucha-really-good-you
http://www.globalhealingcenter.com/natural-health/what-is-kombucha-10-facts-need-to-know/
https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/wellness/2014/10/28/7ba5f68a-5ad6-11e4-8264-deed989ae9a2_story.html


How do you get started? Well, you can always use a search engine. You can find SCOBY's in lots of places. A great website to start with is Kombucha Brooklyn  which sells SCOBYs and LOTS of other stuff, plus great FAQ. Ask around your area, neighborhood, local health food store; you never know who has one.

I'll let you know how mine turns out! Here's a picture of the set-up I use.
Day 7 


OH! You know I LOVE Neil Gaiman and he just put out a new book: The View from the Cheap Seats. Here is the link on his website http://www.neilgaiman.com/works/Books/The+View+from+the+Cheap+Seats%3A+Selected+Nonfiction/

CHECK IT OUT! Also, read this great article, where Neil talks about his book, Ray Bradbury, and other stuff., Brain Pickings article


OFF to work. love, love, love
K