Saturday, October 22, 2016

Gluten-free Chocolate Chip Cookies

3/4 C butter
1/4 C vegetable oil
3/4 C brown sugar
2 t vanilla
2 eggs
1 t baking soda
3/4 t salt
1 1/4 C gluten free flour blend
1 C coconut flour
2 C chocolate chips

In a stand mixer, mix in order.  Bake at 350 for 10-12 minutes.

I came up with this recipe because I had some of the flour blend and some of the coconut flour but not enough for the recipe I had tried before.  It also called for shortening and more sugar, so these were my adaptations.  Turns out, the flavor came out perfect this way as well as the shape and color.  The nice thing about adding a little coconut flour is it has tons of protein and fiber which are usually lacking in the basic GF flour blends.  I only baked up about 15 of these and then froze the other cookie dough balls for later.

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Berry Crisp

I had a bag of berries in my freezer with high hopes for starting my green smoothie habit back up. Since that hasn't happened, and I was craving a warm dessert, I decided to really work on creating a crisp recipe.  I usually like my sugar amounts lower than standard recipes so I can taste the tartness of the fruit, and I also need it to be gluten free.  Here's what I'm enjoying the most right now:

6 C frozen berries
1/4 C white sugar
2 T cornstarch

Mix and place in glass 9 x 13 pan.

1 1/2 C old fashioned oats
1/2 C brown sugar
1/4 C gluten free flour mix
2 t cinnamon
1/2 t ground ginger
1/2 t ground nutmeg
1/2 t salt
1 cube butter

I mix those in bowl, you can cut in the butter like with pie crust, but I just microwave the whole thing for 30 seconds and then mix the soft butter into the rest of the mixture.

Then sprinkle over berries in pan and bake at 375 for an hour.

Man it makes the house smell good!

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Living Room ideas

This morning I was daydreaming about living rooms.  The time will come when we start planning for a home again and really the living room is a main event.  The kitchen is a big deal too...and I hope to have them connected, but where we sit and talk and relax together will set the tone for our home I think. 

Bettendorf, Iowa - Jennifer Home (by Windmiller Design)

 When I started looking through inspiration photos I noticed some trends.  I like balance and equivalent "weight" on each side.

Industrial Home Designs

I like plain colored walls.  Patterned wall paper increases my sensory stress.  I like the full wall's scale of one color.


I thought I was sick of gray in decorating, but it is SO calming.  I relax when I look at these pictures.  Big clear windows are everything to me too.  I love light and I love feeling more connected to the outside.

Budget Blinds

I like brick--real brick, accents that remind me of industrial loft-like spaces.

Contemporary Ranch House
Funky and Fun Living Room

Natural materials (stone and wood) speak to me, too.

Mountain Park Residence
Salon with Custom Plaster Ceiling
Contemporary in Deephaven

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Whole Grain Pumpkin Muffins

2 C whole wheat flour
2 C oats
1 1/2 T baking powder
1 t baking soda
1 1/2 C brown sugar
2 t cinnamon
1/2 t nutmeg
1/2 t ginger

2 eggs
1 1/2 C milk
2 cans (15 oz) pumpkin
2 C chocolate chips

Mix using muffin method.  Pour into greased muffin tins and bake at 400 for 15 minutes.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Raising Mom

I read an article on self care yesterday and it reminded me of "aha moments" I experienced in the dentist's chair.  A few years ago as I sat beginning a cleaning and checkup appointment I wanted to give myself a big high five for making it there.  I had made the appointment, over the noise din that always erupted when knowledge among the toddler folk spread that my attention was directed elsewhere.  I made the appointment, and I KEPT the appointment.  I had arranged childcare that particular time, showered, dressed and made an appointment specifically for the purpose of nurturing MY body.

It didn't happen often and it still doesn't.  I'll call all over town, write notes, prepare my car, and get myself and them ready, and wait in a pharmacy line anytime a need comes up for my little babies.  In fact there've been months that seemed to be constantly filled with medical arrangements, late night pharmacy runs, looking up the nearest urgent care.  That is part of my mom job and I did it with really no thought.

Looking straight at myself is a different story.

My first few days with no kids home, I mentioned earlier, I spent a lot of time looking for jobs.  It wasn't something my husband and I had really discussed and I wasn't really lacking for things that needed done around here.  I was trying to avoid the realization that there was a person with needs nearby that needed met but I was scared of that person.  A part time job and extra money seemed like a worthy reason to avoid that.  I looked at the babies and toddlers in the neighborhood and thought maybe I should offer to watch them.  Clearly I am slow to adapt to new roles!  :)  When I prayed and pondered about jobs the quiet thought I had was that perhaps I needed to mother myself.

Sometimes those quiet answers are rather painful.  Hiding, numbing, looking away are my ways of avoiding pain.  And it feels a little painful to look at how much I've neglected in my own basic care in order to breathe life into my little ones.  When I'm really alone with myself I can see it.  The self care such as medical appointments, grooming, preparing enjoyable healthful meals -- even if just for myself, might be the direction I need to be looking.  I'm gonna be here with me for the duration, so I guess now is a good time for me to start.


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