Urban Homesteading

Hey Everyone!

I have been keeping an eye on the raspberry bushes in the backyard garden.

I noticed some red starting to come on, so I went out to check things out.

There were a couple early raspberries, that were ready so I picked them and ate them.

There are many more that will be ready once we get some warmer weather.

The later part of this spring has been cooler than average. Next week is supposed to get warm, which will help ripen up these berries.

The apples are also starting to grow. If they don’t get eaten through by bugs, we might be able to get some apple sauce made this autumn.

I definitely enjoy growing my own produce, and working with the land. I like being able to live off what I can grow, and preserve food for later when it is no longer the season for growing produce.

Eating Healthier because of Food Intolerances

Hey Everyone!

I am not perfect by any means, there are still times when I do eat “junk food”. Though overall, having food intolerances has forced me to eat healthier.

I love clean eating because it’s not a diet, and it’s not hard to follow. It’s all about eating more fruit, vegetables and lean proteins. You can still have breads, grains, as such in moderation, as well as cutting down the amount of added sugar.

When I was able to do clean eating full time, I felt great. I loved having chicken and fish as well as fresh fruit and vegetables. I would also make smoothies using frozen fruit, unsweetened plain coconut milk yogurt and some cranberry juice.

Who need this…..

When you can have this?

This last picture is of what I had for dinner. Beings that I can’t eat pizza without being sick, and the good Lebanese food restaurant is no longer there, this was what sounded good, so I made it.

There is something about a homemade meal (even the easy ones) that are just so good. When I figure out what sounds good and what to cook, I love being in the kitchen, cooking and baking up a storm.

It’s time for Pumpkin

Hey Everyone!

Yesterday after I got home from work I felt like baking. Beings that I didn’t have to work today, I had the time to bake.

Now that autumn is finally here, as well as the fact that I love pumpkin food, and the weather is cool enough to actually warrant baking, I am back in my element. I love cooking and baking.

A couple weekends ago I made split pea soup, and this past weekend I made Chili.

Fall is definitely my favorite season. I love the cooler weather, pumpkin scents, pumpkin food, hot tea, the changing colors of leaves, I love the fall colors anyway.

I am actually excited that summer is over, and on to cooler weather.

Returning to Clean Eating

Hey Everyone!

Now that Fall is here, and in full swing, I am super excited to see what this season brings for me. The past couple of months I have had a difficult sticking with clean eating and my body has totally been paying for it, and I have not been feeling as good as I know I can. Part of that includes needing to detox from processed/refined sugar.

I know I personally would hard time living somewhere, where I didn’t have access to Trader Joes, New Seasons, Whole Foods, Bob’s Red Mill, and the variety of DF/GF food we have out here on the West Coast. I would totally be fine anywhere in the Willamette Valley, or North Coast, and just make trips to the city to stock up on things I couldn’t get where I was living, if I move away from Portland. As much as I am not a fan of living in the city (noise, all the people, the traffic, the pollution, etc), at least here, I have access to all the DF/GF/ Clean Eating food I could want and need all not to far from me. Not to mention my favorite bakery is here, as well as some amazing tea shops, and Bob’s Red Mill, which is pretty much Gluten Free (and whole grain) heaven. It’s nice being able to go to the local super market and have a decent (albeit not the greatest) selection of DF/GF food.

It is my goal to continue the strict DF diet I have been on for about 5 years now, and get back to being on a more strict GF and minimally processed diet. I am really wanting to incorporate more GF grains and beans back into my diet, and eat Quinoa more often. It is also my goal to eat more locally grown and organic fruits and vegetables.

When I first started this journey, it was because my body was essentially rejecting food, and I needed to figure out what was wrong, and get my body back to as close to normal as I could. That has taken a lot of adjustment, as well as rethinking and really reevaluating my whole thought process, and to some degree my lifestyle. At the same time, those changes bring me to being a bit more in line with the whole culture of where I live, but without giving up my core values. To some, I still may be just another “dirty hippie”, who chooses to eat what I eat, and dress the way I do to make a point, when really it comes down to wanting to feel good, and have food not make me sick, and dress in a manner that is comfortable and normal for myself.

I have also come to a point where I don’t really care what people think, especially the nay sayers who always find something to be judgmental about. I don’t need or want that kind of negativity in my life. The haters are gonna hate, but that means I am just going to be myself all the more. The way I see it, This is who I am, so people have two options, deal with it / get over it, or walk away and its no skin off my back.

I finally feel like I am starting to find my place, and my purpose. I have friends who I care about, and who care about me, they are also supportive and understand (or at least try to), my dietary needs, and I am free to be who God made me to be. I am no longer that people pleasing little girl who just wanted to fit in so bad, she forgot that she was born to stand out. I also realize that I am an example. People watch my life, and see who I am, so I want to put my best foot forward and be the Person I am supposed to be.

GF/DF Muddy Buddies

Hey Everyone!

Today has been a busy cooking day! This morning I had made Baked Oatmeal, which I posted the recipe for. I had also gone to Bob’s Red Mill before coming back home and making Gluten Free and Dairy Free Muddy Buddies, as well as Chicken and Potato Soup and Bruschetta topping for my sandwiches this coming week.

The last time I had gone hiking with one of my best friends the subject of snacks had come up and some how Muddy Buddies had come up, and I hadn’t had any since before I had to go Dairy Free and Gluten Free, and she was like “duh, take the recipe and substitute what you need to substitute to make it without dairy and gluten”, so today I did that. I must say that they turned out amazingly well.

  I took the Original Recipe and tweeked it. So here is the modified recipe, and what I did today.

Recipe:

9 cups Corn, Rice, Chocolate or Honey Nut Chex cereal
1 cup Ghirardelli Semi Sweet Chocolate Chips
1/2 cup Peanut Butter
1/4 cup Earth Balance Vegan Spread
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract
1 1/2 cups powered sugar

Directions:

  1. In large bowl measure cereal and set aside
  2. in 1 quart microwavable bowl, microwave chocolate chips, peanut butter and vegan spread uncovered on high for 1 minute; stir. microwave about 30 seconds to 1 minute longer or until mixture can be stirred smooth. stir in vanilla. pour mixture over cereal stirring until evenly coated. pour into 2-gallon resealable (ziploc) bag
  3. add powdered sugar. seal bag; shake until well coated. spread on waxed paper to cool.
  4. store in airtight (rubbermaid/tupperware) container in the refrigerator.

Notes:

I used 2 – 12.5 oz boxes of honey nut chex, one bag of Ghirardelli chocolate chips and most of a 16 oz container of Peanut Butter (with 1/2 cup of spread) and got about 18 cups of Muddy Buddies.

Baked Chicken with Herbs

Hey Everyone!

135I made a delicious Chicken dish this evening. I love chicken, I am also trying to eat healthier, and make the healthy food taste amazing. I had done some grocery shopping on Thursday, while I was at New Seasons and I decided to bake it tonight. I love making food that tastes good that I went to the store and bought for myself. I have always loved cooking, and being able to buy my own ingredients has been a pass time of mine.

I decided to season it with herbs and see how it would turn out. I used free range chicken that is vegetarian fed, no antibiotics or GMO’s.

For this recipe I used:

  • 1 lb of Boneless Skinless Chicken Thighs
  • 2 Tablespoons Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 teaspoons lemon pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed rosemary
  • 1/4 teaspoon thyme
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Preheat Oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit

I mixed the spices together in a small bowl, added the Extra Virgin Olive Oil to the spices, I then lined a smaller rectangle glass pyrex pan (large enough to hold the chicken) with aluminum foil, and laid the chicken in the pan. I then drizzled the olive oil and spice mixture over the chicken and then rubbed it around on the chicken to evenly coat the chicken with the mixture.

I then baked the chicken in the preheated oven for about 20 – 25 minutes, or until a meat thermometer read 170 – 175.