Thursday, September 15, 2011

miss marple's bread woes...



:: poor ms. marple.

:: she has tried, and tried, and tried some more...

:: but she has yet to find that one recipe that will solve all her woes. After spending a bank breaking amount of money on a new bread machine, her plan on going home and whipping up some instant gluten/dairy/soy free successes was interrupted by a day of utter frustration and despair.

:: her first bread was much too lumpy...



:: the next one was far too spongy...



:: and the third one. Well, that was just plain yucky. She even felt too bad for the birds to give them this one...




:: oh dear! what ever will she do? The school bus is nearing the corner and some surely disappointed boys will be heading in the door.

::don't despair ms. marple. You will get there....just give it some time. Every loaf is one step closer to that perfect loaf that can only be described as "too good".

:: in the meantime, there are always the squirrels. I don't think they are too picky when it comes to bread.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

another reason to love Parenthood...



:: I didn't think Parenthood could get any better, until I saw it.

:: It took a few rewinds to make sure I really did see what I thought I had, and after a few moments of going absolutely ballistic, I calmed down enough to snap a photo of this perfect sight.

:: Mum, your painting looks so incredible, and I still can't get over the fact that you are on t.v.
I am so truly proud of you. (and the "wee" bit of jealousy only lasted for a bit ...)


I know there is a second one of her pieces on set, so if anyone sees a small painting of chopped apples please let me know! ( and yes...I am taping every show. I have to watch each episode twice.. once to look for her paintings, and the second to actually watch the show.)

:: alright, off to rewind it again and stare at it some more...

update: just found out from my mum that she has a third pig painting on set as well. O.k. My jealousy just went up a big notch.

the best gluten/dairy/soy free cookies ever...



:: finding a perfect gluten/dairy/ soy free cookie can be a bit challenging, especially when you are trying to get a reluctant 8 year old on board with his new diet. Finding good substitutions for food that he loved so much pre-diet was a must, and since discovering my own intolerances to gluten and dairy, I was desperate to find that perfect chocolate chip cookie. Sure, I was a supportive mum who kept cheering on the eight year old with such lines as "we will be just fine without gluten and dairy....soon you won't even know the difference" (of course I said this knowing that after he went to bed I was going to raid my hidden stash of chocolate and bread like a mad woman...because "god forbid" I make it a whole day without that stuff. I went on the diet with him to help him adjust easier...little did I know that I would soon discover my own need to eliminate that food from my diet as well)

:: so here it is. the perfect cookie. and it is good.

::who needs gluten, dairy, and soy anyway? (o.k...so I have to admit I am still struggling a bit. It's one thing to put your child on it, and then another to stop yourself from eating it as well. Especially when you are out with your friends and that pre-dinner basket of fresh, hot bread comes out. Nibbling on your own back of gluten free crackers doesn't quite cut it...)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

scratch that...



...now for a more realistic portrayal of daily lunches. Instead of just leaving you with the seemingly perfect "before" picture, I thought it may be realistic to give you the more important "after" picture as well.

...if any of you have a child with sensory issues, you probably understand the unpredictability with their ever changing taste buds. Sure, there are fixed issues that one can apply to all meals (for example, anything with a "mush" to it gets a wonderful gag reaction...), but there are also the foods that unexpectedly get rejected and banned from any future meals. (and of course it always happens to be the one staple food you can count on)

...so, here is my response from yesterday's lunch

mum: "how was lunch?"

child: "good"

child, 2 seconds later: "except for the apple slices. They were too mushy. The corn was way mushy. "

mum: "alright, well thanks for giving everything a try. At least you were able to eat the remainder of your lunch."

child: "oh...and I didn't eat the snap peas. (his favourite food of the past year).
I don't eat snap peas anymore"


"...but the toothpicks were fun"...

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

I'm back!!!



...I am officially back! With both boys now in school full-day, I am beyond thrilled to begin working again. The jam-packed summer is behind us, and here begins a new adventure of writing about recent discoveries and a lot of creative sharing.

..Being that we are into the second day of school, let's start with the daily practice of preparing school lunches. With one child on the spectrum (and eating a restrictive gluten/dairy/casein/and soy free diet...more on that later) and the other able to eat pretty much anything put in front of him, I have the "fun" task of trying to come up with lunchboxes that come home empty. Since the one child is more difficult to work with(and very very picky....food has to be very simple), I find it easier for my own sanity to prepare the same lunches for both, with just a couple of tweaks here and there. This was our lunch for today:

1. toothpicks: the idea of eating small bits of food with toothpicks will instantly turn something once deemed "unacceptable" into the most exciting food in the world. I plan on using these twice a week at the most, to ensure that they remain exciting for the rest of the year

2. apple: chopped up into cubes to allow for more toothpick fun.

3. avocado: cut in half and served with a spoon. My eldest son won't touch avocado, as the "mushy" texture of the fruit bothers him too much. I replaced the avocado with some baby carrots.

4. sugar snap peas

5. chopped up hot dogs (I use Amy's organic grass-fed hot dogs that have no nitrates, and are gluten and casein free). The hot dogs are an option that allow for my eldest son to feel like he is eating something the other kids around him would enjoy as well.

6. corn on the cob. (I cut one corn on the cob in half, and boiled for three minutes while the boys were eating breakfast. A quick and easy food to cook the morning of school)

morning snack: zucchini bread with chopped up fruit


If any of you have been following me for a while, you will know that I usually start these projects with a lot of gusto and energy....we shall see how long this burst lasts before I loose steam and start dumping handfuls of cereal and stale crackers into their lunches.