These are a few of my favorite things

I would like to begin this post by saying a fond yet somber farewell to Leonard Nimoy. Rest in peace, you wonderful man and actor ❤

In this post I will be going over some of my favorite gluten free products so far. Now, I know some of these products probably contain some ingredients I will soon eliminate from my diet, but as I’m just a gluten free beginner, I’m still going through my store-bought options. I hope to make my own out of healthy, organic ingredients, but for now I’m okay with store-bought.

1. Udi’s Gluten Free Bread.

I have only tried the whole grain bread, but I absolutely love it. It tastes bready, but it’s also very light. As a breadophile, I appreciate that I have the option to have bread. It is a little pricey, but honestly a load lasted me about a week, which I think is a good time frame. While I did not enjoy their gluten free pizza, I am really, really excited to try more of their products!

2. Blue Diamond Almond Nut Thins

These are really, really good. I’m actually nibbling on them now with some Sabra olive tapenade hummus (yum). While they’re made of rice flour and almonds mainly, the taste is not overwhelmingly ricey or almondy. They just kind of taste like a cracker. They do have an odd, almost greasy coating, but I’m not worried about it.

3. Van’s Crackers

I had the Say Cheese crackers and they were really good! The box is small and they are bite size, but the box lasted me a while. They’re light and crunchy and a little bit salty, so I probably won’t buy them again too soon since I’m watching my sodium intake, but they ARE very good.

4. Talenti Ice Cream

Ice cream is a serious guilty pleasure. I don’t eat it much, but when I do I destroy it. Talenti makes delicious gluten free flavors, my favorite being Mediterranean Mint Pint and the Sea Salt Caramel pint.

5. Amy’s Organic Gluten Free Mac and Cheese

…again, I know that this may not be the healthiest thing but I was hungry, I didn’t want to cook, I saw it, I bought it, and I ate it. And I loved it. Creamy, cheesy, warm and delicious. Just try not to look at the calories.

6. La Banderita Corn Tortillas.

My boyfriend and I are obsessed with burritos and wraps, so I was really sad when I realized I may not be able to have one again. But wait! Corn tortillas exist! These ones are pretty good…they’re a little…stretchy? Rubbery? But they taste good and I made a veggie wrap for lunch today that was pretty awesome (lettuce, shredded carrot, pepperoncini, cheddar, and gluten free thousand island dressing. Simple yet delicious).

7. Regular things

Eggs, fruits (Envy apples in particular), veggies, most meats (I don’t eat veal, and turkey very rarely), all types of fish especially salmon, chickpeas, black beans, kidney beans, tea, and the works. I try to eat as healthy as possible.

So that’s it for today, I need to stop procrastinating. Our favorite neighbors are coming over for homemade pizza (GF for me, obviously) and Cards Against Humanity night tomorrow, and my apartment is a wreck. Pro tip: Watch Hoarders while you clean. It helps.

P.S. I was able to dwindle my bookshelf! Letting my neighbor look through them tomorrow before I take them to the Salvation Army.

Silly Mistake

Well…I think I definitely do have a sensitivity to gluten.

Here is what happened: Sunday night, Justin and I are hanging out and I’m making dinner, and I use soy sauce. Turns out, soy sauce has gluten in it. I know, I know, gluten free foodies are probably dying right now but I really didn’t know! I mean it’s called soy sauce not gluten sauce…

Anyways, we had dinner, watched some Netflix, and went to bed.

I woke up and thought I was going to die. My nausea was so intense I thought I would be spending the workday in front of the toilet. It was awful. I carefully went over everything I had eaten in the past 25 hours and looked them all up, and sure enough…silly little soy sauce deceived me.

But I’m glad it happened. I eliminated something from my diet and when it (accidentally) was introduced again, it made me ill. I now know not to eat the thing.

Eliminating gluten has been eye opening for me, even though it’s only been a few weeks. I’m learning day by day, meal by meal, and product by product. I may not be able to have gluten free bread all the time, or always be able to cook from scratch with real ingredients (Ahem…I’ve consumed Amy’s Organic Gluten Free Mac and Cheese a few times in the last few weeks…) but so far, this journey has been a wonderful one, and I’m excited for where it will take me!

Goals and Week Two

Today has started out pretty good – I slept in, which I love and hate doing.

A while ago my boyfriend made a “Life Board”. He got some poster board and wrote down his goals and hung it on the wall. Today I’m going to do the same thing, because I haven’t been doing well with reaching my goals and seeing them in front of me will probably give me more motivation!

The second installment of my 50 Shades of Me project is up on my Instagram today. I’ve included a piece of a journal entry from the day the photo was taken (I have every diary I’ve kept since I was 8). Click the link in my menu “50 SOM” to learn more about this project.

 

Bookworms/Review

Today is going to be a little difficult for me. I’ve realized recently that I have too much stuff. I also realized that I have too much of one particular thing in general, and that is….books.

I know, I know, one can never have too many books. And I love all of my books dearly, but I know that hiding in the depths of my bookshelf are volumes that deserve to find a better home.

A couple years ago I got really into minimalism and donated at least ten trash bags of clothes, trinkets, and things I just hadn’t touched in many years. But I’ve never been able to bring myself to get rid of my books, even those I haven’t opened since high school.

But I’m going to push myself to do this. I’ll have more room on my shelves for storage, which should help clear up the mess in the office, and hopefully give rest to my mind! All the books I decide to part with will be donated to the Salvation Army, of course.

GF Pizza Review

So Justin surprised me with a frozen gluten free pepperoni pizza the other night. It was Udi’s brand, and since I LOVE their bread, I fully expected their pizza to be just as amazing.

Unfortunately I was let down. I followed the directions but thank goodness I checked on the pizza before it was done, because it had started to melt through the oven grate! I had to take it out, place it on a cooling rack on top of a baking sheet, and let it finish cooking that way.

The taste was fairly bland and weirdly sweet. I wouldn’t buy it again. So, Udi’s bread = Yes. Udi’s frozen pizza = No. Win some, lose some.

 

50 Shades of Me post tomorrow, and possibly one on Monday if I decide to switch my weekly post. If you haven’t read about this project yet, click here or click the link in my menu.

50 Shades of Me

I have started a project called 50 Shades of Me. I hope to show the world real faces of people who have gone through domestic abuse, myself included, and how supporting glorified abuse franchises like 50 Shades of Grey is wrong on so many levels.

I’ve got a page up in the menu describing the project more in depth. The actual photos will be on my Instagram page.

I wasn’t planning on sharing the darkest part of my past, but I will if I can help stop this madness.

One Full Week and Restaurant Review

I know I kind of posted about it a few days ago, but I wanted to do a proper “Full Week” update, plus a restaurant review. It has been one week of being completely gluten free!

I’ve definitely noticed changes. One of the biggest changes are that I no longer feel bloated. I used to feel so incredibly bloated day and night. It was uncomfortable and honestly a little damaging to my self esteem, because I felt bigger than I am. I feel like I’m finally seeing the true look of my body and I don’t feel as bad about it.

Another big change is that I haven’t felt the fatigue I was suffering from. My usual schedule is up and ready at 5:20 AM, make coffee, make breakfast for my boyfriend, get his lunch ready, send him off to work, and start working myself at 6 AM. But before, I used to start dropping off as early as 10-11 AM. This past week I have been alert and able to stay awake much longer, no naps, no afternoon coffees, etc. It’s been awesome.

Along with the less bloat, I believe I’ve lost a little weight. I didn’t start being gluten free for weight loss, but it’s definitely a plus! Right now I’m wearing a pair of jeans I could barely close a week ago.

I’m looking forward to more health benefits as I keep this going. I read that it can take a few weeks for gluten to 100% get out of my body, so I have to just be patient. I also read that there are lots of skin benefits. I have bad eczema on my hands, and I had a huge flare up right before I went gluten free. My left thumb is scaly and cracking at the moment, but I haven’t had any other fingers suffer. I’m hoping that the eczema will clear up. It will be a huge benefit for me.

Now, I’d like to talk about a restaurant Justin and I went to yesterday for a Valentine’s Day lunch. We went to Brixx Pizza in Mayfair, because they have gluten free pizzas!

I forgot that 50 Shades of Domestic Abuse came out on Friday so I didn’t anticipate the crowd, but most of the poor woman who fantasize about being abused were in groups and wanted tables, so Justin and I strolled right past them and and sat at the bar. Our bartender, Preston, was really nice and a very hard worker. We ordered a glass of wine, and looked at the menu. I ordered the Rustica pizza with the gluten free crust, and Justin had the regular Pimento Cheese pizza. I was a little sad to see that the prices on their online menu were not the same as in-store, but I’m sure they jacked them up for Valentine’s Day, which is okay. I have worked in the restaurant industry before, and it didn’t bother me too much.

My pizza was great! If you didn’t know it was gluten free, you wouldn’t even know. Prosciutto, mozzarella, olives, artichoke hearts, mushrooms, and whole cloves of garlic made me very, very happy. I didn’t try Justin’s for obvious reasons but he said his was great, although the spinach wasn’t cooked, it was more like a raw garnish, but he ate it all anyway.

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Mmmmmmm! After our wines Justin got a milk stout and I ordered a Bold Rock cider. The bill was a little steep at over $50, but the glasses of wine were probably at fault.

If I found myself in Mayfair for some reason and I was hungry, I’d stop here. But I don’t see myself making the drive anytime soon. While it was very, very good, the drive was long, the crowds were crazy, the parking lot was worse than WalMart, and it was just a little too expensive. But definitely try it if you’re in the area, it settled my need for pizza without the gluten!

I’ve got lots to do today: laundry, cleaning, and probably going to have to work a little in order to meet my deadlines. But I’m turning some creative ideas in my head as well!

Be well my friends, and I hope you all had a great Valentine’s Day!

Five Days

It has been five days since I went gluten free, and I only slipped up once! I had a small quesadilla yesterday, because I was so hungry. Why was I so hungry? Oh, no reason. I was just really dumb and went GF when my budget was too small to stock up, even though I posted a whole GF “Stock up” post a few days ago!

Do as I say, not as I do…

Well yesterday we got paid and I was finally able to get to the store. I have it all now: Fruits, veggies, proteins, snacks, and a loaf of Udi’s whole wheat gluten free bread. I tried the bread today, and I am completely in love.

It’s very light, but still tastes and feels like genuine bread. And although it was light, and the actual loaf is very small, I felt comfortably full after my sandwich. I didn’t get tired after, like I used to after eating bread, which was great for my workday. I’ll definitely continue to buy Udis until I decide to try and make my own gluten free bread. I was afraid my addiction to sandwiches was going to pose a problem, but not anymore!

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I also bought some apples last night…Have you ever heard of an Envy apple? I couldn’t decide what kind of apple to get and there they were, hidden behind a display, and I had never heard of them before but they spoke to me. I grabbed two and went home.

Oh. My. Glob. They are incredible! Sweet, crisp, apple-y, perfect. I can’t get over them. I know, thats what an apple usually tastes like, but just…try them. Check out their website here, too.  Non-GMO, grown in New Zealand and Washington, and I want to buy a thousand and eat them raw, make cider, make pie, and basically make people think I’m a Disney Evil Queen with all my apples.

That’s it for now! Celebrating Friday and five days GF (with one slip up!)!

Stay safe and be well!