Archive for ‘Food Allergies’

April 19, 2013

Mr and Meatless’ Gluten Free All Purpose Flour

I’ve had a lot of people ask me what kind of flour I use in my gluten-free recipes, so I figured I’d share. I posted it with the Gluten Free Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes recipe, but here it is again, for easier access.

Mr and Meatless’ Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour

1 cup coconut flour

1 cup sweet sorghum flour

2 cups brown rice flour

1 cup potato starch

Whisk it all together and keep it in an air tight container in the fridge.

I use this four for everything from cupcakes to pancakes to soups and sauces. It sounds like it might be sweet, but it’s not an overpowering sweet, so don’t worry about using it in savory recipes. Also remember if you’re baking with it, you need to add xanthan gum or some other binding agent so that everything sticks together properly.

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February 27, 2013

Gluten Free Chocolate Peanut Butter Cupcakes

gluten free cupcakes

Is there anything that will cheer you up better than a cupcake? There are few things that can put a smile on my face quicker than a delicious mountain of frosting perched atop a perfectly individually sized hunk of cake.

That being said, when I found out a good friend of ours had been “couched” with a ski injury, I knew just the ticket to make him feel at least a little better about the whole ordeal.

CUPCAKES!!!

It’s fortunate for him that I suffered a wheat allergy and had plenty of random, non-wheat flours hanging around the house. And it’s fortunate for me that I got to use some of them because I’m certain they don’t last forever!

Since I’m not a full-time non-wheat-eater, I haven’t spent great amounts of time practicing and testing different combinations. I mostly stick to good ol’ Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Baking Flour when I am baking because I know the combination works the way I need it to. Well, of course I wouldn’t have anymore of THAT in my box! So I had to improvise. And I have to say, I’m pretty dern proud of how they came out.

gluten free cupcakes

Gluten Free (and also, as luck would have it, vegan) Chocolate Cupcakes with (not vegan) Peanut Butter Frosting

2 cups Mr. and Meatless’ all purpose gluten free flour (see recipe below)

1 1/2 cups unsweetened applesauce

1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

2 tsp baking soda

1 cup coconut sugar (feel free to go ahead and use regular old white sugar if you wish. I use this because my mom is allergic to the white stuff and she usually likes to taste test)

sprinkling of salt

1/2 tsp xanthan gum

3/4 cup almond milk

Yep, that’s it. Now throw it all in your mixer and let ‘er rip! Scoop into a lined muffin pan and sort of flatten it out in there (use all the batter among the 12 spots). I also opened the oven and patted them into the correct shape just as they started getting firm on top, just to make sure they didn’t come out all hoaky. The batter is THICK, and it seems wrong, but it’ll be okay. Have a lil faith. Anyway, bake for about 20 minutes…the tops will be firm and you can poke them with a toothpick and the pick will come out not soupy. Let them cool all the way before frosting.

Mr. and Meatless’ all purpose gluten free flour

2 cups brown rice flour

1 cup sweet sorghum flour

1 cup coconut flour

1 cup potato starch

Whisk all the flours and starch together. Use what you need, then store the rest in an airtight container in the fridge for ultimate freshness.

Peanut Butter Frosting

I have a hard time with frosting recipes. I keep adding stuff until it tastes right, but this is more or less the gist of it.

1 stick of butter, softened.

1/3 cup creamy peanut butter

1/2 cup  milk of your choice

5 cups powdered sugar

Combine the butter and peanut butter in a largish bowl. Next add the powdered sugar and milk and stir until just mixed. It IS possible to overmix and then your butter gets all melty and your frosting is too soft and it’s all a big mess. This is also why I use a spoon and not my mixer. If you’ve mixed a reasonable amount and your frosting is too thick, add a little bit more milk…like a splash at a time. If it’s too thin, add more powdered sugar.

gluten free cupcakes

Wasn’t that amazingly easy? I’ve always been intimidated by gluten free baking. But these, my friends, were both incredibly easy to make and completely delish. Enjoy!

gluten free cupcakes

July 23, 2012

Weekend at the Beach

It was another busy weekend for the Sutherlins. Filled with good food, great friends and plenty of family we don’t get to see very often.

Friday night we packed up the truck and headed to Santa Cruz to visit Jim’s grandparents on his mom’s side. We arrived late and went to bed late after talking with his grandparents until after midnight. In the morning, his grandma made us french toast for breakfast (two different kinds: one with regular bread and one with my gluten-free bread) and we spent the first half of the day hanging at the house with them.

They were heading off on a trip with their RV group, so we left them to pack their stuff and headed to the boardwalk.

It was crazy and packed with people and it took us over an hour to find a place to park (although when we finally did it was free as opposed to the $12 fee to park in one of the Boardwalk’s lots). There were so many people, we could barely walk through the crowds as we made our way down to the beach.

Someone had made a really cool shark out of sand. It was impossible to get a photo of it by itself because for some reason, every time someone else was done taking their photo, this lady in black and white in the front had to go in and get more pictures taken of her. People are strange.

Then we went inside and played some arcade games and stopped for a photo with the distorted mirrors. As you can see, Jim wasn’t too interested, and this mirror wasn’t too crazy. Our legs are super long though. We got $5 worth of coins and then gave our tickets to a cute little girl who was there with her dad. She was stoked!

Then we walked out to the wharf. From there we got a better scope of exactly how many people were on the beach. I can’t understand how it can be considered fun to hang out so close to so many other people. But then again, I didn’t grow up in beach culture, so maybe there’s something to it that I’m just not getting.

There were tons of seagulls and pelicans on the wharf, including this fellow who found a comfy spot on top of a trash can for a nap. These guys are mean when you get up close to him. After I snapped this photo, he opened his beady little eyes and followed me with them as I walked away. I thought he might peck my eyeballs out if I didn’t move fast!

There was a display about them in the wharf and I guess they’re endangered and were close to extinction several years ago. I can understand why if they’re such jerks!

When it got too warm and we were both tired of walking in sandals (Jim got a pretty nasty blister from the sand rubbing in his), we headed back to the car to meet our friends Nic and Christie for dinner. I have mentioned Christie before. She’s the one who married us. She’s also my massage therapist. She’s quite the multipurpose friend!

They were in town for the Wharf to Wharf run. They were staying at the house of a friend of a friend. They’d brought wine and snack, and all she could find were these mason jars to serve the wine in. It was white wine, hippie-style! There’s never a dull moment with these two!

We had dinner at a restaurant called Dharma’s. They do all vegetarian and vegan food and they are very sensitive to other allergies, with many gluten-free options. Nic has an intolerance to gluten, so he and I are in similar boats when it comes to eating out.


This drippy droopy sandwich Christie is digging into was made on a gluten-free roll. I had a burrito with no tortilla. Jim had probably the toughest time picking a meal because he’s not used to going out and not having a meat option. He chose a burrito and some nachos. Nic had rice pasta with Greek toppings. We all left completely stuffed.

After dinner we had drinks and headed back to Jim’s grandparents’ house and fell into bed.

The next morning we went up to meet our newest nephew, Jim’s brother Chris and his wife Stefanie’s son. His name is Nickolas and he has the cutest chubby cheeks and more hair on his head than most adults do! I was so distracted I forgot to get a photo, so I jacked this one from Stefanie’s facebook. Isn’t he a cute little monkey face?

I only wish we lived closer to them so we could see them more often and watch this little one grow up!

The weekend was all sorts of fun, but now we’ve hit Monday morning, and I feel like I’ve been hit by a truck. Both of my brother’s, my sister-in-law and my nephew were all sick last week, and I think I finally caught a bit of it. I’m congested and my chest hurts and my throat hurts and I’m bundled up on the couch with tea and my dvr. Hopefully this will blow over by tomorrow. I don’t do sick very well.

How was your weekend? Did you do anything fun?

July 6, 2012

Thai style peanut noodles

I have had the biggest cravings for something savory and creamy lately. Most things possessing those qualities are so because of the flour in them, which makes it hard for me to find something that’s safe for me.

I decided to bust out the PB2 my lovely Foodie Pen Pal, Dee, sent me and create something myself.

I’ve always loved Thai peanut noodles. I never thought peanuts would be good with pasta, but holy moly. Delicious! Since I’m home from work early today, I decided it would make a delicious little lunch.

Mr and Meatless’ Thai style Peanut Noodles

1 large handful of spaghetti style pasta (I used rice pasta, but you can use whole wheat or regular old what pasta. Tis up to you)

1/2 green bell pepper, sliced thin

2 medium sized carrots, sliced thin

Approx 1/2 cup frozen edamame (or fresh if that’s what you’ve got)

1/2 cup Bragg Liquid Aminos (or soy sauce)

4 tbsp PB2

1 tsp sesame oil

1 tsp rice vinegar

1 squirt Sriracha sauce (to taste)

Cilantro, for garnish

Boil the spaghetti noodles in a large saucepan. Steam the bell pepper, carrots and edamame. Combine the liquid amino acids, PB2, sesame oil, rice vinegar, and Sriracha, whisk until smooth. If you’re using rice noodles, empty them into a strainer and rinse with cold water, then place in a serving bowl. Toss noodles with veggies and sauce. Garnish with cilantro (If I had sesame seeds, I probably would have sprinkled some of them on top too) and enjoy!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone! I’ll see you on Monday!

June 28, 2012

Side effects

Yesterday I posted about the foods I miss since I can’t eat corn or wheat. Today, I figured I’d balance it out by sharing with you the positive “side effects” the change has had.

1. I get ideas

I used to get these fabulous ideas for things I could do: creative birthday gifts, DIY projects around the house, new recipes, get togethers with friends, weekend plans. I think eventually my brain got tired of these ideas being rejected that it just stopped having them. I used to feel so guilty when I would come up with such a cool idea and then not have the energy to go through with it. I am finally starting to get these ideas back…and I’m doing them!

2. My apartment gets clean

I won’t say that it IS clean because I’ve been in sort of a slump. The pain from my knee kept me awake at night for a whole week. Pair that with last weekend’s adventure and I’ve been feeling less than motivated. I know, however, that it is temporary and will pass (that in itself is an amazing feeling!). And probably, with any luck, by this afternoon, our apartment will at least feel clean again.

3. I want to wear high heels

I have so many pairs of heels that I love. And in the past few years, it’s just seemed like such a pain, so much more effort than I could afford to wear them….now I just need my dang knee to finish healing.

My fabulous wedding shoes may see the outside of their box again!

4. I’ve started writing again

I think I mentioned this one before. I stopped working on my large writing project just after we got engaged. I told myself I’d be too busy planning our wedding, but beyond that there was a little nagging feeling that I just didn’t have the energy to produce anything good. And that’s partly my own self-loathing speaking (fueled by a number of rejections of my first novel… “Can I really do this?!”), but somehow, I’ve found the courage and energy to pound out some words and have started a fresh draft of my current project. Wish me luck.

5. I want to redecorate

I won’t claim to be the world’s most amazing decorator. Hell, I won’t claim to be one ounce of good at it at all, but ever since I was a kid, I’ve had this amazingly keen desire to redecorate, rearrange rooms every few months or so. I was actually a little hesitant to move into my first apartment after college because my bedroom was too small to move the furniture around. Could I really live like that? Well, I managed. And again, our room is too small to do much moving around. But for a while there, I had no desire to make changes at all, and while I still can’t move the furniture, I have this desire to freshen up the decor and find myself often cruising House Beautiful and numerous home decor blogs in my free time.

6. I want to be my best self

And I feel motivated to make the changes necessary. Not major changes. Just little things like making time for exercise every day (and not just when I already have time for it). Taking time for MYSELF every day…to read, to write, to watch a television show. And sticking with my new diet…lifestyle really…because that’s what makes all of the items on this list happen.

Prior to finding out about these allergies, I wasn’t sure I’d ever be able to feel “normal” again. I was sure there was a good possibility I would just be tired forever, unable to muster the energy to get through every day. The “side effects” have been amazing. Now I believe there’s a good possibility I may actually find a bit of contentment in my life, a bit of happiness that lingers rather than falling away as soon as it arrives.

Have you ever been so discouraged by something you can’t control that it feels like it may never go away? How did you cope with that?

June 27, 2012

I miss….

Since cutting wheat and corn out of my diet, obviously the food items I put into my mouth on a daily basis have changed drastically. But it hasn’t always been in the ways you might think….ways that even I would have thought. Of course things like french bread and cupcakes are more obvious, but there are plenty of not-so-obvious items as well.

1. Vegetarian meat substitutes

I can’t tell you how many meals I’ve made in the past that were centered around these sausages…or veggie crumbles….or veggie burgers. I wouldn’t have imagined they had wheat in them, but wheat protein is pretty much the #1 ingredient in most of these products.

2. Saltines

Weird, I know. But Jim and I used to eat Saltines in bed with a glass of milk for our “nighttime snack” before we went to sleep. It’s not like I’m overly in love with the crackers. It’s just something we can’t do anymore, and I miss it.

3. Baking

Baking snickerdoodles with Lil Man the first time I watched him all by myself

Before I found out about the allergies, I was a baking fool. I loved to bake: cupcakes, cookies, brownies. You name it. It’s not that I can’t bake anymore, it’s just that it’s more challenging. And there’s no substitute for a hot-out-of-the-oven chocolate chip cookie. I’m sorry. There’s just not.

4. Caramel…specifically caramel macchiatos from Starbucks

Yes, I’ve written them a friendly email stating that they shouldn’t use corn syrup in their caramel, but the fact remains: it’s there and I can’t drink it and I miss caramel macchiatos like hell. (I actually had the genius idea to make my own caramel sauce, order a vanilla latte and drizzle away! Although that may end up kind of messy…oh well, it’s worth a try!)

5. Corn…yes, just corn

Corn on the cob is so delicious. It’s one of my all-time favorite foods. Aside from that, I put corn in everything: rice bowls, pasta, soups, anywhere it can just be tossed in….at least I used to. I sure do miss corn.

Have you ever had to give up eating something you love?

June 22, 2012

It’s Farm Fresh to Me Day + Five Rounds of Acupuncture

My Farm Fresh to You shipment has arrived!

As I’ve mentioned before, once a month I get a box of organic, local produce delivered to my doorstep. Today’s shipment excited me….as most do…but this one included so much stuff that I love!

Isn’t that beautiful?

Garlic

Carrots

Plums

Peaches

Lettuce

Potatoes

Zucchini

Broccolini

Bell Peppers

I can’t wait to dig into this stuff and plan some recipes when I get home! Does anyone else loooove summer produce more than any other season? I can’t get enough peaches and nectarines and strawberries and tomatoes and zucchini and plums! Although I am a pretty big fan of squash and pumpkin and lentils and carrots and most fall produce too. I guess that makes sense, though, being a non-meat eater and all. Most of my diet consists of produce and grains. And cheese. Although I try to limit that. 🙂

Acupuncture

On a…mostly completely different note, I finished my fifth round of acupuncture this week. I can’t believe it’s been over a month since I stopped eating wheat and corn and started getting poked with needles once a week. I feel so incredibly different. I feel myself wanting to do things again, want to start projects, create things. I’ve started writing again (yes, I know blogging is writing and I’ve been doing that, but I’ve got sort of a its-got-to-be-big-or-it-doesn’t-count mentality. If I’m not writing a novel, it doesn’t count. I’m working on it. One thing at a time. My overachieverness is just going to have to wait for a tick). I’m feeling so much more like…me.

And it’s amazing to think a handful of needles once a week can help so much.

I’m going to post some photos now. If you hate needles and you are squeemish about it, don’t scroll further.

But I went into this thing knowing nothing about what to expect…okay, that’s not entirely true. My mom had told me about it, as well as my friend Christie, but I had no idea what the needles looked like or, more importantly, how big they were. And it’s really not all that scary, but I figured I’d share in case anyone else is curious or contemplating acupuncture, but is maybe a little afraid or intimidated. And I apologize for the crappy cell phone photos. I wasn’t about to bring my Canon in the room with me, so these will have to do…oh, and my mom took them. I’m not crazy enough to attempt that maneuver while acting as a human pincushion!

He has always put these two in my legs. Not sure exactly why but each point treats a different part of the body. The 4 he put in my lower back are supposed to treat fatigue.

This one is in the top part of my ear. You are looking from the top of my head. The white is the paper-covered cushion. This one is supposed to relax you. I’m not sure it did much the first few times…it’ll take more than a needle in the ear to relax that kind of anxiety, but the last three or so treatments were actually pretty relaxing.

Overall, the acupuncture experience was pretty…tumultuous. My first treatment was okay…the second was borderline traumatizing. The third one was surprisingly good, and the fourth and fifth were probably what they’re supposed to be: relaxing and a little rejuvenating. I’m glad that I did it.

Now if this darn knee would hurry up and finish healing, maybe I could get back into a normal routine of sleeping and working out and I’ll feel good as new.

Have you ever had acupuncture? If so, what was your experience? If not, would you ever consider it?

June 13, 2012

Today is a “blah” kind of day

It really is. I woke up, exhausted still, rolled over and was fully back to sleep before Jim woke me up when he got in the shower. I meandered through my morning routine, making Jim’s lunch, putting together snacks for myself, making lattes and getting dressed. I almost forgot to bring Under the Tuscan Sun, which I’m supposed to have finished by tomorrow…and I’m supposed to make a recipe from the book to bring to book club. That part I’m actually looking forward to. Reading the rest of the book? Not so much. I’ll try to remember to post a review when I’m finished.

When I got to work, the Lil Man showed up shortly after I did, so that made my day a little. But then I had to take him to my mom’s house to have a nap. At her house, I weighed myself, anticipating the “losing a few pounds” that I was supposed to be doing as a result of cutting out the wheat and corn. I’ve lost 5 in the last month…it seems like it should be more. I think the hypoglycemia is messing me up there. I have to eat so often, and I think I may just be losing track of what goes into my mouth. I’m thinking I may start chronicling that here…to help me keep better track.

As I sit here typing this, I feel like I’m going to throw up, and I can’t seem to pinpoint why. I can’t think of anything I’ve eaten that would make me sick.

Today, so far, I’ve had:

a muffin I made the other day

1/2 an Odwalla Vanilla Al’mondo Super Protein Drink (a little heavy on the calories, but super tasty)

about a cup of blueberries and raspberries

a double tall soy latte from Starbucks

a handful of blueberry almond rice pops (if you haven’t tried these things, you should. I got them at costco, but you can also get them at the company’s website: http://www.180snacks.com)

And now I’ve had a cup of mint tea, hoping it will settle my stomach a little bit. So far, not so good.I’m hoping this day takes a turn for the better or it’s going to be a long stretch to 4:30.

How is your Wednesday going?

June 4, 2012

Strawberry, basil and balsamic cupcakes

One of the great challenges of living with food allergies is satisfying cravings. My biggest weakness is sweets. I have to constantly have something sweet on hand or else I go completely mad trying to find something. And now that I can’t have corn or wheat, my selection has narrowed immensely.

Most prepackaged sweets these days include corn syrup. Even some gluten-free ones use either that or corn starch. And what would streamline baked goods be without flour? Add to all of that my mom’s allergy to sugar and we are a sad pair when it comes to satisfying a sweet tooth.

So Saturday I went about trying to find an alternative that we both could eat. I wanted to make a strawberry cupcake and upon finding not one single recipe that didn’t include either a cake mix or a box of strawberry jello (gross!), I decided to wing it a little bit. I was entirely nervous about it, though. Winging baked goods is risky for me anyway because I’m always so scared I’ll mess it all up and then waste all of the food involved. But winging gluten-free baking? Super scary. But it turned out pretty well, so I figured I’d share the recipe with you.

Strawberry, basil and balsamic cupcakes

Strawberry cake

(adapted from Sprinkles Cupcakes’ strawberry cupcake recipe)

2/3 cup whole fresh strawberries, pureed (you can use frozen if that’s all you’ve got, but it’s summer and strawberries are aplenty!)

1 1/2 cups Bob’s Redmill gluten-free all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon coarse salt

1/4 cup whole milk, room temperature

1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature

1 cup brown rice syrup

1 large egg, room temperature

2 large egg whites, room temperature

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a 12-cup muffin tin with cupcake liners.
In a medium bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt. In a small glass measuring cup (easier to pour from…but you can use a bowl), mix together milk, vanilla, and strawberry puree.In the bowl of your electric mixer, beat butter until creamy. Add brown rice syrup and continue to beat until well combined. Reduce the mixer speed to medium and slowly add egg and egg whites until just blended.With the mixer on low, slowly add half the flour mixture; mix until just blended. Add the milk mixture; mix until just blended. Slowly add remaining flour mixture, scraping down sides of the bowl with a spatula, as necessary, until just blended. Divide batter evenly among prepared muffin cups. Transfer muffin tin to oven and bake until tops are just dry to the touch, 22 to 25 minutes. Transfer muffin tin to a wire rack and let cupcakes cool completely in tin before icing.

Balsamic whipped cream frosting

2 cups heavy whipping cream

4 tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp brown rice syrup

Whip it all together in your mixer until light and fluffy. Apply to cupcakes and garnish with fresh chopped basil and chopped strawberries. (I did overbeat my frosting a little bit…it still tasted ok, but it looks a little like cottage cheese in some photos)


The response to these was varied. My mom, who can’t have sugar loved them (although she, of course, wished they were sweeter). My sister-in-law, the one who adores almost everything I bake, wasn’t a fan. Not sweet enough for her either. My nephew devoured hers. Friends of ours, Christie and Nic, loved them to Japan and back.

Jim and I liked them enough. They’re great considering what they are. The cake is moist and pretty dense as most gluten-free stuff seems to be. There wasn’t enough basil flavor really, but I’m remedying that one in the next round. I’m going to make a small batch for my mom and do the rest with sugar…a simple syrup infused with basil and a regular old buttercream frosting…with balsamic in it.

I’ll let you know how it goes.

June 1, 2012

weddings and allergies and acupuncture, oh my!

My life has been in kind of a whirl-wind lately. And as I type that, I know I’m searching for excuses as to why I haven’t posted in over a week. All I can tell you is that I’ve opened wordpress a handful of times, stared at the blank screen for hours (between doing other things at work, of course) before giving up and closing the window, vowing to try again tomorrow.

It probably hasn’t helped that I haven’t stopped moving in over three weeks. I haven’t had a weekend where I could just sit back and relax and recharge for the next week. Sure, we spent last weekend at my family’s house in Shelter Cove, but between packing and cooking and walking around at the tide pools and the 11 hours of driving there and back, it’s a fun weekend, but not necessarily a relaxed one.

I’m not saying that the past several weeks haven’t been good either. They, for the most part, have been very good. Last Wednesday I photographed my first wedding. (I’m gonna sprinkle some photos in between my text)

It was stressful at times, but it went really well. The bride and groom and their families were amazing. So friendly, so easy to be around. No one was cranky or weddingzilla-y at all.

I had my first round of acupuncture last week, and another one this week. It’s a big thing for me because I hate needles. Hate them. And I realized that the reason I hate them is that nervy feeling you get when they go in. Well, that’s what acupuncture is all about. So I more or less dislike it. I know it’s going to help me feel better, and I’m going to keep going, but I don’t enjoy it. I’m hoping I’ll grow to though. My mom has been doing it for a while, and she enjoys it. Maybe I just need to get over the initial newness of it. I’ll keep ya posted.

And since I don’t have any acupuncture photos to share, I’ll post ya another wedding photo.

I am also kind of still getting used to eating things without wheat and corn. In and of itself, the change isn’t hard. I’ve been eating a lot more fruits and vegetables, straight up. I’ve found some crackers I like and I’ve been packing string cheese and bard boiled eggs to take to work. With the hypoglycemia, I’ve pretty much eliminated the concept of “lunch” and snack on what I pack throughout the day.

What’s hard is making dinner. I’m still experiencing a lot of fatigue, and dinner has always been my hardest part of the day. I can’t tell you how many pizzas we’ve ordered in the past simply because I was too tired to cook (and Jim was coming home at 8-9 pm every night).  I can’t do that anymore. I have to think it through, I have to have ingredients on hand. I need to find some time to make up a bunch of tomato-basil pancakes to throw in the freezer so I can just pull them out and heat them up when I feel like I can’t cook.

Last night after the acupuncture rendered me more or less useless, I lied on my bed wondering what the heck I was going to eat for dinner, straining my brain, like so many other nights recently, to come up with something easy based on what I had in the fridge and cabinets.

I would up throwing together a little “Breakfast for dinner” of sorts. I threw some potatoes and butternut squash into a pan with some olive oil and spices, then added zucchini, onion and peppers once they were almost done. I mixed in some vinaigrette dressing and some dijon mustard and topped it with two poached eggs, 1/4 of avocado and a sprinkling of cheddar cheese..oh and salt and pepper. I thought it turned out pretty tasty for a meal thrown together with only half of my brain engaged.

(this photo looks kind of funny with all the wedding ones. lol)

With any luck, I’ll get a little relaxation out of this weekend, although I doubt it’ll be much. It’s funny because when we’ve had a long string of boring, sit-at-home style weekends, I wish like crazy we had something to do, somewhere to be. But now that I have just that…all I want is to sit at home! Jim and I haven’t had a Sunday afternoon nosh on the couch with a Nancy Drew game or reruns of Storage Wars in months.

This weekend I have to test out gluten-free strawberry cake for the cupcakes I’m making for Tucker’s 1st birthday party next weekend. Then on Sunday Jim plays basketball and we have an event to go to at the vineyard. I feel like I may be able to sneak a few hours of relaxation in on Saturday. Although I do need to go grocery shopping and plan meals for next week, so I don’t end up in a frenzy like I did this week.

I’m hoping that my weeks start slowing down a little. I miss spending time with my blog (and with other people’s blogs! I’ve had no time for reading either!) And sleeping. I miss that too…..

Happy weekend, everyone!