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‘I’m sick’ post…

May 21, 2010

Yes, once again I’m sick. My darling toddler gave me the intense coughs. Luckily however, SHE’S better. Thank goodness, as she’s been sick with a high fever and the yucks since Monday!

So since I’m sick, and out of books, and I’ve watched all my stacked up tv programs on HULU this week while holding the aforementioned sick toddler…

Now I’m window shopping. yay!

Here’s my styleboard for my Master Bath. I’ve already got a dresser style dark wood sink installed a couple of years ago. Now to match huh?

Spiral Owls...
Spiral Owls… by flisleshnitz

if you’d like to see the master list of all of these cool items…just clickety!


Super Duper Bloggy Giveaway of Crafty Goodness

May 17, 2010

Yes, you read that right!!

Sew, Mama, Sew! has THREE BLOG-FULS of crafty goodness!!

Crafters from all over the world have gathered together along with their blogs and posted a giveaway. Sew, Mama, Sew! Then gathers up all the threads of their links and posts them all on one of three blogs

Giveaway Day + Supplies and Materials

Giveaway Day ~ Handcrafted Items

Giveaway Day ~ Sewing + Knitting Supplies/Materials

As for me. I’m applying to a lot of them. However, everything I win (unless it’s a kid in my house size) will be sent straight to a friend of mine who lives in Tennessee and lost almost everything to the flooding there. She needs crafting supplies as almost all of hers were lost, and this is an awesome way to try and do something for her!

I’ve already applied for a really beautiful market bag and the extra material to make one, some sewing supplies, cute little ninja rabbits AND found a lady that is gluten free with an awesome-cute blog.

See if you can find these guys!

Gluten Free Mad Hatter Cake

May 9, 2010

What I did:

Take 4 boxes of Betty Crocker Gluten Free Cake Mix – 2 yellow – 2 devils food

2 Family Size boxes of instant pudding mix – 1 chocolate – 1 vanilla

Make cakes according to directions – but add 1/2 of the family size package of pudding to it during mixing.

Add full amount of cake to circular cake pan, treated according to directions, and cook as per directions

Cool them off

Swipe the top with your chosen cake filling (I chose cheesecake with homemade strawberry preserves)

the bottom layer looks funny because it's dyed green

Continue until they are all stacked well together

Then I put the whole shebang in the fridge for a few hours and let it chill out

A few hours later….. I took it out and started carving on it. If it had been taller, I’d have inserted the skewers in it already to make sure it stayed up. But since I was making a Mad Hatter Hat, it didn’t really matter much if the cake got a little skewed from straight huh?

So carving

I inserted the skewers at this point, picking a point about an inch from the edge and aiming slightly inward to make sure they went in at an angle. I put in four, just to be safe since it *did* go to my daughters prom, and there was going to be loud bass, teens bumping into the display table and lots of dancing…

Then I put the crumb coat on…

Then I put it in the fridge for about an hour and went to go read….

After my lovely refreshing read… I went to go make the marshmallow fondant. Then dye it and roll it out.

making texture on the fondant with wax paperTexture on the fondant with wax paper

texture on the fondant

The actual Hat. I got in a serious time crunch at the end (I was 20 min late, as I was chaperoning) The fondant got too sticky to deal with well, so it doesn’t look as well as it should have. But all in all, still pretty cool. The teens were impressed. Even better, the only people that had a clue it was gluten free were my daughters close friends. Not ONE person commented on a ‘funny taste’ or anything of that nature.

I also got some requests to make birthday cakes for friends!

Would I use Betty Crocker Cake mixes again? In A HEARTBEAT!.

If they’ll work for a cake like this, they will work for anything!

May is National Celiac Awareness Month

May 5, 2010

May is Celiac Awareness Month.

So first, some facts about Celiac Disease also known as coeliac sprue, cœliac disease, c(o)eliac sprue, non-tropical sprue, endemic sprue, gluten enteropathy or gluten-sensitive enteropathy, and gluten intolerance.

  • 1 in 133 Americans have Celiac Disease or about 3 million people. These are very similar to percentages in other countries (barring pure Japanese, Chinese, Hawaiian and some African peoples)
  • Odds are at least one of you readers has undiagnosed Celiac.
  • 98% of people with Celiac disease go undiagnosed OR their symptoms are diagnosed as another issue (I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia 10 years ago).

Some Symptoms:

First – I want to note that you don’t have to have all of these symptoms. You could have nothing but a sense that you just aren’t feeling right. What did I have? I starred those ones.

  • Funny looking stools (Loose? Hard? Small? Large? Foul smelling? Floating? Clay, Light tan or Gray-colored? Highly rancid? Frothy?)
  • Muscle cramping*
  • Sores in/around mouth
  • Skinny feet (loss of fat padding)
  • Bad gas (ie: hurts, smells awful, constant etc)*
  • Depression*
  • Inability to concentrate*
  • Bone issues
  • Hyperparathyroidism
  • Lactose intolerance
  • Easily bruised
  • Systematic lupus
  • Parasitic infection*
  • Fungus problems (severe athletes feet, candida overgrowth)
  • Nose bleeds*
  • Failure to thrive in babies
  • Vomiting
  • Red urine
  • Hypocalcaemia/ hypomagnesaemia
  • Panic attacks
  • Stunted growth in children
  • Voracious appetite
  • Obesity*
  • Abdominal cramps, gas and bloating
  • Anemia
  • Borborygmi (stomach rumbling)
  • Diarrhea
  • Fatigue or general weakness*
  • Fluid retention
  • Gastrointestinal symptoms
  • Gastrointestinal hemorrhage
  • Hypocalcaemia/ hypomagnesaemia
  • Infertility
  • Iron deficiency anemia*
  • Muscle weakness*
  • Muscle wasting
  • Nausea
  • No obvious physical symptoms (just fatigue, overall not feeling well)
  • Osteoporosis
  • Pallor (unhealthy pale appearance)
  • Peripheral neuropathy (nerve damage usually in extremities)*
  • Vertigo
  • Vitamin deficiency*
  • Vomiting
  • Extreme thinness
  • Bloating – especially in stomach
  • Back Pain*
  • Dehydration
  • Night Blindness*
  • Dry Skin
  • Severe food cravings*
  • Heart Issues (usually odd beats)*

Conditions and Disorders Associated with Celiac Disease:

Dermatitis herpetiformis is an itchy, blistering skin disease that also associated with gluten intolerance. Rashes usually occurs on the elbows, knees and buttocks.  Dermatitis herpetiformis can also cause significant intestinal damage identical to that of celiac disease. However, people who suffer from dermatitis herpetiformis may also be entirely free of noticeable digestive symptoms. Treatment with a gluten-free diet, in addition to medication to control the rash, usually brings about significant improvement.

Getting Tested
There are some simple tests that aren’t absolutely 100% , but it is WAY TOO EASY for a doctor to give you one, barely accurate test, tell you it’s negative (and be absolutely wrong) and damn you. Your chances of cancer are aprox 50% higher if you are eating gluten and your body is intolerant of it. Did you read that?? You basically have a 50/50 chance of getting cancer if you are an undiagnosed Celiac! Does cancer run in your family? Maybe it’s not Cancer – it’s Celiac!

If you are going to get tested, check out here first:

The other thing is, if you hardly eat gluten containing food as it is, and you get tested, your results will be wrong. You need to be eating the equivalent of 2/3 pieces of bread for about 3 months before you get tested. (it’s the reason my 16yo hasn’t been tested, she felt so GOOD when she quit eating gluten she and her Doctar are not willing to loose 3 months of her life just to have the test diagnosis and he’s willing to call it ‘presumed Celiac’ instead)

If you think that you might be gluten intolerant, and your doctor is reluctant to test you. First, my mom, who has been a nurse almost 40 years says that when she, and most doctors were in school, they were taught that Celiac was very rare. More than that say Multiple Sclerosis. So quite a few doctors, unless they keep up on their research, think that Celiac is a ‘fad disease” and are reluctant to test.
Insist. Celiac is also a disease for those who are more well off. Turns out doctors are more willing to test you if you are in a higher Socio-economic bracket!

If you can’t get tested. Then go gluten free anyways. Give it 2 weeks at the minimum. If you feel better. Awesome. I suggest you write in a journal. Chronicle what your body ACTUALLY feels like before and after. After 2 months. Eat gluten. If you get immediately sick, there’s your answer. Or you could be like me, sick comes later. First I get extremely irritable and make everyone around me miserable for days. It’s pretty hard for me to see what I’m doing at first. Because hey, I’m pissed, and I think I have a right to be. But it’s the gluten. I’m normal off of it, on it, I’m a miserable bitch. Because next comes the body pain, the neuropathy, and then the fatigue, flu like symptoms and just general malaise. For about a week. Then I’m more susceptible to illness for about another month. Yes, it takes that long to recover. Some people are so sensitive after quitting gluten it takes them almost 6 months to recover after being glutened. You can imagine those people don’t let gluten in their house.

Also, even TWO YEARS ago, it was difficult to find gluten-free food. Now, most companies (barring buttheads like Cambells) make their food with a gluten-free label, Heinz, Progesso, Lays, General Mills and Betty Crocker just to name a few. Nowadays you don’t have to be an extraordinary baker to get good tasting food. Yes. It’s more expensive. But personally, this is good. It makes it so I rely less on ready made products like bread and donuts to eat and more on healthier things that are fast cooking (like eggs mmm and cheese). General Mills is even coming out with a ‘hamburger helper’ and ‘Bisquik’ this Summer!
So don’t use the difficulty of eating as an excuse to not go gluten-free. please.

My 16 Year Old

May 2, 2010

My oldest daughter turns 16 on Monday.
My first thought is “She can’t be that old already can she” and my next thought is one of pride and worry. Isn’t that every mom’s right?
I am SO proud of Morgan.

Almost 17 years ago I was given the unexpected news that I was pregnant. Then a few moments later, was told I either had an eptopic pregnancy, or my appendix was about to burst. Either way I was told, I was having surgery SOON.

That I might loose this precious baby I’d just learned about.
Then I looked at that thought. I wanted her fiercely, she was MY CHILD.

Understand. I was 17 at the time.

Just going into my Senior year of high school. I was so very lucky and loved in who my parents and some of my family. Other girls in my condition had been kicked out by their parents, they were living on the street. Or they were forced to marry in one case.

My parents. Well, my mom is a nurse. My dad the foreman of a cattle ranch at the time. Mom just did what nurses do. She became patient, supportive and nurturing, and taught me in 8 shorts months how to do it too. My dad. Well he wasn’t happy. Not at all. But the minute he saw his Grandchild. Well, lets just say Morgan LOVED taking naps on his bare rounded belly LOL.

Morgan was two weeks old here at my High School Graduation (and I graduated with a 3.8 gpa thank you).

Morgan was an extremely articulate child, her first ‘word’ was at 9 months. Where she said “I hungy Mommy, wan buhsetti” (and I was making spaghetti)
She started walking the next day. I didn’t know that a 18-19 year old mother was worthy of such genius.  But I’d darn sure try my hardest. I took all the parents I’d ever witnessed, from my family, from my friends parents and from people my family had been close too. I examined their parenting styles, and I decided what was good, and what I would toss. Then I instituted my nightly cross-examination. Where I would lay in bed at night and really LOOK at what I had done with my child/ren that day. What was good, what could be better, and where I messed up. To me this has been so important as a Mother. To look at myself truly, and say ‘you messed up’. Tomorrow is another day, you can do better tomorrow. No guilt, no yelling,  just truth and the will to do better. I think we could all use that.

Now my Morgan. She’s one of those teens that teachers have been telling me since she started school what a pleasure she is to work with. How awesome and smart she is. How sarcastic and funny. What a great parent I must be in association with how cool she is (which I haven’t always found to be necessarily true). Yes, she’s hit her teen mood swings.
But the difference between her as a baby, still in diapers, telling me to read to her. Versus the difference in her now, telling me she is leaving with friends to go take care of responsibilities. Both times she TOLD me, but both times, there was an ask in there too.
Morgan is on her way toward leaving me in a few short years. And I pray that I’ve been parent enough to give her an internal guide on that pathway she’s going to be walking solo. I think so.
She’s pretty awesome

T-shirt Upcycling-Repurposing META POST

April 22, 2010

from Wikipedia: Upcycling is the process of converting waste materials or useless products into new materials or products of better quality or a higher environmental value.

Another word I’m going to ‘throw around’

Verb to repurpose

2. To alter to make more suited for a different purpose.

I’m sure a lot of you readers are familiar with taking something old and using it for a different purpose that it was originally intended. I’m also sure that a lot of you practice upcycling and repurposing on a regular basis.

Our Ancestors used things until they were just plumb unusable anymore. I know my Grandmother says to me “Use it up, wear it out, make do with what you have”.  Examples of repurposing?
crocheted rugs I'm working on

Two rag rugs I’m crocheting out of scraps from other projects. Everyone is familiar with these kind of rugs! Or howabout quilts?

Antique Crazy Quilt

Lately I’ve been gifted with quite a few t-shirts. Some my kids loved. Some my kids friends loved. But others… meh. What to do with them? I’ve seen a few posts from blogs I follow where they’d re-done a shirt into something a little better fitting, or made market bags. That occurred to me. But some of them are just plain ugly, or have slogans I’m opposed to wearing. So I did what I always do.

I googled it. heh.

and OH MAN the sheer QUANTITY of links I found. Then those links led to more links, and to more links. Next thing I know, I’ve got a mission. To write a post about the things you can do with t-shirts. A Meta Post, we shall call it!

So here we go. If you’d like to see a picture of the project, simple hover your cursor over the link and a picture should pop up. If any of the links are broken please let me know! And if you’ve got a project you’d like included, feel free to let me know. I’d like to ask that it be significantly different from the other items included that it’s new information AND that it’s a tutorial or has enough pictures to be pretty darn clear about how it was made. Thanks!!  I’d also like you to note that some of these items are not originally made with t-shirt material. However, they are made out of material (like fleece and felt) that would lend itself admirably to a t-shirt project.

edited to add: Sorry about the BOLDING of links and the smooshing them together and the various colors. WordPress isn’t my original home and html is not my best friend. So in the interest of actually having this post up on Earth Day and having a life the rest of today. I’m going to leave it the way it is while it still works LOL!!


Ruffle shirt~ << Tea Rose

1 Shoulder Tank Top w/ Pleats



Toddler Ruffle Skirt << Sew Much Ado

Toddler Pants << Rookie Moms



Baby Romper from a T Shirt << wikiHow


Little Boxer Briefs << Sew a Straight Line

Make Your Own Bras << Queen of the Trailer Park


Bathing Suits


Bikini << Cut Out + Keep – M.a.r.i.s.o.l.










Ruffle Pillow Tutorial << FloralShowers

Stuffed Animals aka: Plushies aka: Softies


A Review and a Rant

March 11, 2010

First, let me say: I haven’t had a pre-made donut in almost 2 years.
All those times I walk into a gas station and they’ve got fresh hot donuts. Driving past Dunkin Donuts with my mouth watering….
Well, my local Publix JUST started carrying Kinnick GF donuts and cinnamon buns. Yes, I bought one of each.
I JUST ate one of the cinnamon donuts and they were DELICIOUS. My taste buds sang. The texture was spot on, they were moist, and just the right amount of chewy/crumbly that donuts should be. I was wildly impressed.
Now for the rant: With the statement that I *really*probably* shouldn’t do this. It’s against all the ‘get those people with the advertising and such to like me’. But I think honesty is way more important that butt-kissing.
The donuts cost 6.99 per box of 6.
6.59 on the home website.
Yes. 6.99 for 6 donuts readers. It’s highway robbery in my opinion. And would you like to know the OH so expensive ingredients in this donut of gold?

Sugar, white rice flour, tapioca starch, cinnamon coating (sugar, cinnamon), water, whole eggs, sweet rice flour, palm fruit oil (non hydrogenated), fructooligosaccharide, yeast, pea protein, egg whites, xanthan gum, fruit concentrate (dextrose, dextrin, fiber), salt, rice bran extract, cellulose, KinnActive ™ Baking powder (sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium bicarbonate, pea starch, mono calcium phosphate) glucono delta lactone, sodium bicarbonate, nutmeg

CAN YOU BELIEVE RICE FLOUR COSTS THAT MUCH!! yeah right. They are ripping us poor wheat allergy/Celiac’s off!
I *truly*honestly* think that even though these companies are awesome for taking on a niche market and making actual EDIBLE food for people who don’t have the luxury of making everything from scratch. That they are also seriously taking advantage of those same people.
I can make 12 donuts that taste JUST AS GOOD as these ones with much less ingredients and for probably 2 dollars for a dozen. Maybe less. My math skills aren’t that hot.
It’s why I don’t buy pre-made products that much. Who can afford 7 dollars for 6 donuts? Do they think everyone who needs to eat their products have money trees?
So, to wrap this up. I’m really happy to be eating a donut that I didn’t make, and I’m going to stuff myself silly on them LOL. But I think I’ll just go back to cooking my own again once these are gone!