Wednesday, November 27, 2013
Happy Thanksgiving Eve! The last day of Thanksgiving prep is upon us! First thing, this morning, I put my big turkey to brine. This is how we do it Cajun style, in an Igloo ice chest. I followed the recipe from Danielle Walker's ebook "Thankful". All I can say is, it smells delicious.
Once my turkey was secure in it's salt bath, I prepped dish after dish. I prepared my gluten free sausage and apple stuffing, traditional green bean Cassarole, Paleo green bean Cassarole, and mashed sweet potatoes with brown sugar apples and pecans on top. I like to do one dish at a time. That way I can pull out all the ingredients for one dish, put it all together, and wash every utensil, bowl, and pot before moving on to the next. This also helps to avoid cross contamination if I'm preparing allergen containing dishes.
Next, I took a break away from the kitchen. I ran around the house, moving furniture (again!), vacuuming, cleaning the guest bathroom, doing a load of laundry, ironing the table linens, and putting yet another leaf in the dining room table.
Back to the kitchen I went! I'm not proud of it, but I shoved a banana in my mouth for lunch. My Paleo, Crustless Pecan Pie was my next project. I like to eat my pecan pie cold; so, I had to bake it today so I could refrigerate it overnight. I know, I'm the only person I know who does this. It's just one of my quirks!
By the time I finished baking my pie, it was time to cook dinner. I could have taken the easy way out; but, I didn't. I made Chicken Parmesan with gluten free breadcrumbs and pasta. I realize it's not paleo. But, I have so many gluten free items in my pantry that I bought before I knew I had to go hard core paleo. I don't like to waste food. Besides, I was exhausted!
After dinner, I tackled the setting of the table. I like to set the entire table the eve before the holiday. An hour later, I was done.
Finally, it was time to chill! I removed my snood and let my hair hang free. In case you don't know what a snood is, it's basically a fancy hairnet. I didn't want to take a chance of losing some hair in the food I worked so hard to prepare. Lately, it falls out by the handfuls. I would be mortified if one of my guest ended up with a mouthful of hair. Yuck!
And what was Boho doing as I toiled away?
So, everything is ready to go. Tomorrow is the big day, Thanksgiving! I'll let you know how it all works out. I'll be putting our turkey in the oven at 9:30 AM. I have everything scheduled for the time each dish needs to go into the oven. I'll prepare the remainder of the veggie dishes and the two different gravies (one is paleo). I'm hoping to get dinner on the table by 3:00 PM. We'll see how that goes!
Right now, it's 11:30 PM. As soon as I post this blog, I'm going to bed. Goodnight!
Tuesday, November 26, 2013
So, this morning I set off to do my Thanksgiving dinner shopping. I needed to purchase a few hard to find foods; so, decided to shop a grocery store that carried a big variety of specialty foods. I parked my car in a spot pretty far from the entrance, as I always do. I figured there is someone out there who needs a closer spot than I do. Besides, I like to walk. Midway through my walk, I started to feel that old wicked ache in my hip joint. Aargh! I could not let the pain deter me. I had seven family members and Boho counting on me to provide them with a Thanksgiving feast. I hobbled onward.
Inside the store, desperation festered from last minute shoppers scurrying around like rats in a maze. I carefully maneuvered my way through the fresh produce department. Luckily, I was the rare bird who wanted organic only produce. I picked out my Fuji apples, sweet onions, sweet potatoes, parsley, and green beans without so much as a sighting of another shopper. Yeah for me!
In the meat department, I quickly located the fresh free range turkeys. Yikes, fifty bucks for an eighteen pounder! I knew Trader Joe's had them pre-brined for $1.99 a pound. As I stood contemplating, a woman came by and started shuffling the turkeys around. " That's an awful lot to pay for a turkey, don't you think?" She asked me. " Yeah, I think I'm going to get one from Trader Joe's for $1.99 a pound," I answered. She proceeded to tell me that she'd just come from Trader Joe's because they were SOLD OUT! I grabbed my $50 turkey and placed it into my shopping cart.
The next three hours were spent collecting the ingredients I needed to make my mixed paleo/traditional dishes. I travelled to three different stores to locate everything. Well, almost everything. I could not, for the life of me, find raw cashew butter! I, finally, decided to make my own with raw cashews I picked up at Trader Joe's ( by the way, the woman I met earlier was right- NO TURKEYS). I said a silent prayer of thanks to God for sending me that wonderfully informative woman at precisely the right time.
Once home, I carried my loot into the house, looking like a pack mule. I don't know what it is; but, I hate making more than one trip. Boho barked at me as I balanced on one leg, slipping off my boot and replacing it with my slipper. She was still barking as I reshifted and did the same with the other side. I plowed through the house until I reached the kitchen and laid the sacks on the floor.
The rest of my afternoon was spent putting away my groceries, taking out the garbage ( tomorrow is garbage day), adding the extra leaf to the dining room table, moving the furniture to accommodate guest, choosing table linens, baking grain free bread for the stuffing, and cooking dinner ( Cilantro chicken and zucchini).
I wish I could answer the question I keep asking myself. What was I thinking? I have never waited until the last minute to prep for Thanksgiving or any other holiday ( I host all of them!). I don't know if it has anything to do with my diagnosis, the trip I took to visit my newborn nephew, or my constantly evolving symptoms. All I do know, is I will never do this again!
Tomorrow, I will clean house ( which includes shampooing the carpet), brine the turkey, and prepare the green bean casseroles, sweet potatoes, and grain free sausage stuffing. These will all be made in advance and then refrigerated. Thanksgiving day, all I need to do is pop them in the oven about a half an hour before serving. Easy as pie! Oops, I forgot about the Paleo Pecan Pie! I'll make that tomorrow, too.
All of my recipes can be found on my Pinterest boards, Gluten Free For Me and Paleo-a-go-go. Http://www.pinterest.com/bohoandmo
And: Danielle Walker's Thanksgiving ebook on Amazon.com
Monday, November 25, 2013
Well, I wanted to use a photo showing a beautiful fall day. But, this photo shows the reality of an autumn day in Illinois. And, trust me, from the photo, you cannot feel how cold it is outside!
Anyhoo, today is my first day of formal planning of my Thanksgiving menu. It's the day that I finalize the dishes to be cooked and make my list of items I need to purchase at the grocery store tomorrow. Normally, I have this done already. But, this year, I have had to learn a whole new way of planning and preparing foods. Luckily, I've received some help along the way.
If you are new to the gluten free or paleo lifestyle, your best bet is to find a professional who has been living it for awhile. I don't know if you've heard of Danielle Walker, founder of Against All Grain. She offers some of the most delicious recipes I have ever found. Her book, Against All Grain, has tons of recipes for foods I thought I would never be able to enjoy again. And now, she has created an ebook just for Thanksgiving. You can find it on Amazon for only $1.99! Most of the dishes I've decided to cook for Thanksgiving are from this ebook.
I should tell you, I am not receiving any kind of compensation for this review. This is my honest opinion, nothing more. With Danielle Walker's ebook, I have been able to plan a paleo feast for me and my family, complete with stuffing and dessert.
Tomorrow comes the hard part. Shopping for paleo friendly meats, where I live, is beyond difficult. I should have lots of fun tomorrow trying to find everything I need. I already know I'm going to visit at least three stores seeking my ingredients! Wish me luck!
More recipes can be found on my pinterest boards at www.pinterest.com/bohoandmo.
Also, check out www.againstallgrain.com.
Friday, November 22, 2013
My, things sure do change quickly around here! After getting completely abandoned by my GP, I have immersed myself in research, looking for a cure for all that ails me. I have also consulted with a Naturapathic Doctor to further my studies. We have come to the agreement that my lupus requires a very thoughtful plan which combines herbal, vitamin, homeopathic, diet, and stress reducing therapies.
My current diet of gluten free foods is not restrictive enough. I am to now follow a paleo food plan which totally restricts grains of any sort. You can find tons of information online; so, I will spare you the long description. I also have to eliminate citrus ( Boo!) and vegetables in the nightshade category
( potatoes, tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers, etc.). Don't worry about the lemons and oranges in the photo. I use them for cleaning only now. The citrus is bad for my stomach ulcer and hernia because they're much too acidic. The nightshade veggies can affect my joints by causing further inflammation.
Great, and right before the holidays!
Luckily for me, there are tons of Thanksgiving Paleo recipes online and for sale as ebooks and PDFs. I will be doing a review of a few of them this weekend. I'm going to blog about them next week, probably Monday.
Since I'm hosting Thanksgiving dinner at my home, I will have control over what I cook. I've decided to make paleo versions of my favorite foods, Sweet Potato Crunch, Pecan Pie and Green Bean Cassarole. For my family, I will make the traditional versions of their favorites. My Mother-in-law is bringing the pies, thankfully. I'm glad I'll be the only one eating the paleo versions, in case they don't turn out so well!
As for the changes to my herbal and vitamin plan, I have upgraded my vitamins to the Melaleuca Vitality Total. These are, by far, the best vitamins I have ever taken. The Total pack adds supplements for eyesight, joint care, and hormone support. I have already noticed a difference in my hip and knee pain. The pain had gotten so bad, it was difficult for me to walk. These vitamins are not cheap; but, the relief they give is worth every penny. If you'd like to know how to purchase your own, email me at firstname.lastname@example.org. I'll hook you up. I'm also taking Cat's Claw, to reduce inflammation, and Paul d'Arco, to cleanse my blood. I drink 1/2 cup of aloe vera juice everyday, mixed into my fresh fruit and vegetable juice. Oh, and let's not forget about my fish oil supplements.
We will continue to add various remedies as I need them. Cleaning out my beauty and personal care items was a vital part of my wellness. I am only using the purest, organic products. Successfully, I've been using Organic Coconut Oil as a body moisturizer for my skin rashes. I will be blogging recipes for my favorite concoctions soon, along with a resource list of where to find the best ingredients.
So, there is much more to come as I maneuver my way around lupus world. I won't go down without a fight! It's ON!
Have you checked out my Pinterest boards yet? I pin lots of fabulous recipes ( gluten free, paleo, and regular), herbal info, alternative health articles, diy ideas, and just some funny stuff. Www.pinterest.com/bohoandmo
Be sure to "Like" us on Facebook for daily updates on all that is Boho and Mo. Www.facebook.com/bohoandmo
And, I've just updated our website for fall! Www.BohoandMo.com
Friday, November 15, 2013
After receiving my diagnosis and refusing allopathic treatment, I started doing a little research of my own. I assumed that since I had an immune system in overdrive, I didn't have to worry about germs and viruses. Wow, was I wrong about that! It seems that when your immune system is busy destroying your organs, it tends to disregard other invaders. This actually puts you at greater risk to bugs! Good to know!
Upon learning this nugget of information, I immediately began to panic. The next day, I was to teach a class of fourth graders! Germ alert! And, two days later, I was to board a plane full of people and fly to New Orleans. MEGA GERM ALERT!
Luckily, I had previously met Denise, owner of Tend2 Corporation. Her company sells Air Purification Systems. When I met her, she was wearing one of the portable devices around her neck. Of course, I asked her about it. She explained to me, at the time, that the devise created a barrier around the wearer which repelled pollutants, including bacteria and viruses.
I called her promptly. She was able to set me up that day with the Graphite Mini Mate. It can be held, worn on a strap around the neck or clipped onto a belt or pocket. The unit sells for under $200 and is sold with a 2- hour charger and 2 rechargeable batteries.
Then, it was time to put it to the test! I taught my class, flew to New Orleans and back to Chicago without getting sick. While visiting my sister and baby nephew, Grayson, we had to take him to his first checkup appointment. I wore my Mini Mate while carrying Grayson, to protect the both of us. We walked into the doctor's office and observed sick children everywhere, touching everything. I held my nephew tightly as we waited to be called. I also instructed my sister to sit as close to me as possible without making people stare too much. None of us became ill afterwards.
So, you can see, I really put this little device to the test. I purchased my Mini Mate a little over two weeks ago. I haven't experienced so much as a sniffle.
Tend2 also sells room and whole house air purifiers that employ the same technology. I have thoroughly researched this technology to be sure it was safe. You can look into it further at http://www.tend2corp.com . Denise Netzel is the owner and she can answer any questions you may have. If you tell her Mo sent you, she'll give you special pricing.
The Mini Mate would be perfect for teachers, people with compromised immune systems, anyone who works around chemicals or pollutants, or newborns. I highly recommend the Mini mate and the home purifiers.
Remember, if you have an ineffective immune system, it is very important to protect yourself. Oh, and by the way, this unit is also safe for pets and children. Denise told me of cases where dog owners bought them for their dogs with allergies. The dogs' allergies have since improved. I thought that was pretty cool.
You can reach Denise at her website: http://www.tend2corp.com
Tell her Mo sent you and get special pricing. If you have any questions for me about my experiences, email me at email@example.com.
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
I believe that an important part of healing is looking as good as you can. This has been hard for me to do lately. I mean, with this butterfly rash covering half my face and my hair falling out in clumps, looking good has become quite time consuming. I wanted a quick beauty fix!
Whitening your teeth can improve your looks in an instant. Facing the world with a bright smile can change your outlook, as well as those around you. But, what's a natural woman to use in this chemical, whitening strip world. Activated charcoal!
These are my teeth before. Yuck!
I know this looks pretty scary! I simply opened a capsule of activated charcoal, dipped my toothbrush in it, and brushed it on my teeth. I continued applying and brushing until I had used all the charcoal. Then I let it sit on my teeth for 3 minutes. Lastly, I rinsed my mouth until there was no more residue on my teeth.
Ta-da! Much whiter teeth. I will do this daily for a few days to get them even whiter.
This is so quick and easy anyone can do it. I was sure not to alter the photos in any way. These were taken by my phone and have not been enhanced.
Happy smiles to you! Please comment if you try this. I would love to know your experiences!
Well, I just came home after my trip to New Orleans, visiting my newborn nephew, Grayson. He's absolutely perfect! It's always so refreshing to spend time with a precious new life. It definitely did my spirit good.
Now that I'm home, it's time for me to deal with the realities of my health. A few days before I left for New Orleans, I received the diagnosis of lupus. As if that weren't enough, I'm also dealing with gluten sensitivity and IBD. Oh, and I forgot to mention the fibroids. Basically, every test my doctors ordered found damage to the organ tested.
The next step, for them, was to put me on a drug cocktail consisting of NSAIDS, Corticosteroids, fiber laxatives, Tagamet, and synthetic hormones. Now, I do enjoy a good cocktail here and there, don't get me wrong. But, reading the side effects for these drugs convinced me that they were more dangerous than the diseases they were to treat.
This research led me to my decision to refuse my doctors' treatments. None of them welcomed my decision to go with alternative treatment. I was immediately left on my own, to cure myself. In fact, when I called my GP to report my hair was falling out by the handful, she had her nurse call me back referring me to another doctor. Okay!
I am now researching which alternative treatments I will utilize. I have already placed myself on a gluten free regimen. I have begun a vitamin, mineral, and herbal supplementation program as well.
I will continue to blog,with detailed information, on the alternative treatments I employ in my quest for a cure. I'll let you know which work to relieve symptoms, as well as, those that don't. I'm going to use myself as a guinea pig.
It is time to heal!