Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Sharing chips with the cat... such a special bond....(the cat is 15 years old so needs live life to the full!)

A month without tears - keeping it real.

This is a topic that's frequently discussed amongst women, so why not bring it to the blogging table...its a lot of sharing for please be gentle with your comments (or I'll bite!!)

It's that dreaded PMS

I have always suffered from bad PMS. I cant deny it, I turn into an evil, tongue-slashing, fiery mess.  I start to get more sensitive, less patient, extremely irritable.... and in the name of KEEPING IT REAL here, even think mean thoughts about passersby!!! Seriously!  I can't describe how horrible I am. Every month it lasts for around 10 days but there is always one day I am at my worst... my poor hubby and the kids make themselves scarce so I can wallow in my own self pity.

And guess what, I DONT want to be like that. I hate feeling that way.

I also crave for dairy, chocolate, sugar, anything comforting.  I will actually stand in front of the fridge using massive amounts of willpower to stop myself drinking milk straight from the bottle (yes, Im dairy intolerant so that would just make me physically ill too!)

My sister in law told me, you never appreciate how bad your own pms is until you see it in your daughter... well that's going to be very scary!

BUT, there's actually a good side to this post....

A week before Christmas last year I found this awesome kiwi blog Craving Fresh, and I read this AWESOME book she recommended by Michael Pollan, called In Defense of Food, it is probably the best book about 'what we eat' I have EVER read - it will change your life. I have also bought his book, Food Rules.
I followed the links to this great blog Modern Alternative Mama and this book too, Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon. All of this is based on the Weston Price Foundation research. And to me - it just makes sense.
Nourishing Traditions: The Cookbook That Challenges Politically Correct Nutrition and the Diet Dictocrats
I have a friend who is very much into eating natural unprocessed foods so she was a great person to chat to about it (miss you Jacqui :( ).

And so I stopped eating processed grains and sugar (yeah I know, my diet is already very limited being gluten, dairy and egg intolerant!).  It was really tough at first...sugar is super hard to give up! I bought some raw honey and whenever the craving hit I would have a wee teaspoon of that...because at least it was unrefined and natural. After a few weeks it didn't bother me so much. Fruit tasted sweeter, everything tasted better!

A month later something really unusual happened.... 'that' time of the month arrived and I was caught totally off guard. I'm not one to take notice of dates etc (there's enough school stuff to remember without a red circle on my calendar!) so was a bit shocked but figured it was probably just early or something.  Then the next month arrived... hello, something was a bit off kilter...

I mean, for two months I went through my normal 10 days of misery without even noticing!! Seriously!! I didn't have ANY symptoms of pms AT ALL!

How could this be?  My doctor told me I had a really bad version of PMS, PMDD (Pre menstrual dysphoric disorder)that required me to take anti depressants for 2 weeks of the month... which I didnt.  Look it up, it means you are basically the crappiest at dealing with Pms each month. And I went from that... to NOTHING!

And then, I ate some sugar... and ate some more, and then I started putting back in more processed grains... and more (gluten free dairy free egg free cardboard bread can become addictive too!) and before you know it... I am back to square one.

So how could a few weeks without eating processed grains and SUGAR, have such a profound effect on my symptoms?

I think I am REALLY sensitive to sugar and grains. Ive already shown I can't tolerate gluten...celiacs will do that to you!  But I think its more than that.  My hormones are totally off kilter with processed, refined foods.

So, its back to cutting out those foods again because I enjoyed the 'nice' me waaaayyy more than I enjoy cardboard bread and sugar.

The downside is eating such a limited diet is very anti-social! Anyone keen to have me over to eat???? haha.... I am happy with salad!

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

The confidence of a 5 year old

My blogging is really SLACK at the moment (as was kindly pointed out to me this morning - hehe) and I have so much I want to blog about - STACKS!! but Im struggling to find the time.....

So here's just a quick post to share with you the confidence I am loving in my youngest child (who started school only 7 weeks ago)

Each of the kids were given a box for the ever growing pile of drawings etc. I told them, decorate it however you like...

this is Miss 5s...

I love it :)

Friday, March 25, 2011

Gluten free Ginger Crunch

Following the requests for the ginger crunch that has totally destroyed my sugar free day!!
here it is....

Gluten Free Ginger Crunch

125g butter, softened  (to make mine dairy free I used Olivani - was perfect!)
1/2 cup White Sugar
1 1/2 cups Healthries Simple wheat & gluten free Baking mix  (I used Orgran plain flour -its my fave gf flour)
1 teaspoon gluten free baking power
1 teaspoon ground ginger
Cream butter and sugar. Add dry ingredients. Press into lined swiss tin. Bake at 190 C for 20-25 minutes.
60g butter (or olivani)
4 tbsp golden syrup
1 1/2 c icing sugar (sifted)
1-2 tsp ground ginger
Melt together in a saucepan or cook for 1 minute in microwave then spread on to slice.
Allow to set and then cut into squares and try not to eat it all at once.

And because we're on the topic of Ginger Crunch... I had to share this ultra yummy gluten recipe... quite possible the best ginger crunch Ive ever tasted (prior to going gluten free). But if anyone finds me certified gluten free Oats...I'll be your friend for EVER!!!
Wholemeal Ginger Crunch
150g butter
2 tbsp golden syrup
3/4 c brown sugar
3/4 c coconut  (I use organic dessicated coconut as the supermarket one is full of preservatives that give us asthma)
1 1/2 c rolled oats (not instant)
3/4 c flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 - 2 tsp ground ginger
Heat oven to 180C. Melt butter, golden syrup and brown sugar in a pot. Remove from heat. Mix dry ingredients together and add to melted ingredients. Mix well and press into greased slice tin. Bake for 15 mins (for chewy) or 20 (for crunchy)
Use the above topping recipe for the topping.

Things Im Loving

You know, I'm really loving this weekly link up.


A big thumbs up to Kristy for encouraging us to be thankful no matter what is happening in our lives. It certainly makes a difference to my week, and I'm lucky enough to know this bubbly beautiful person in real life too now - she is awesome and soooo super creative!!!

So this week....

Im loving.....

 ... my new regal status as the new Queen of KMB!!! (yes that is the beautiful Kristy next to me in the photo!)
Sarah has established this amazing website and I feel so privileged to take it on as she moves into a new phase in her life with baby number 2 on its way.  I will endeavour to keep it to the calibre she has maintained and over time will probably start injecting a little of 'me' into it too. For now I just ask for everyone's patience as I take on this big task :)

For me its the perfect 'job'. I get to work on the website while all three children are at school and its something I feel passionate about.   Read about it here.

I'm loving.....

gluten free, dairy free ginger crunch!! YUMMY!!!

and after I took this picture I ate it ... both of them! (and I shouldn't probably say I then went and had another piece!! Yikes its only 9.30 am!)

Im Loving...
my wee boy learning so much from his Poppa....

Im loving that hubby has plane flights all booked for a week with us during the school hols, but would be loving it more if he had a job back here too!!!

Right Im off to read all the lovely messages you beautiful people are sending and to sew some more bunnies for the school carnival  :)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

bloggy sleepover

Upon seeing this post I'll excuse Simone for thinking...about time!!!

A few weeks ago we recieved a very cool invite requesting our attendance at a sleepover with Team G.

There was much excitement in our house as the children had already met and were keen to visit and stay with their new found friends.

We arrived at the Team G home to the smell of freshly baked gluten free bread!!! YUM!!! Simone quickly whipped out a piece of hot bread with dairy free Oliviani for me to enjoy! Seriously! At that point I was considering moving in permanently!!!

After a cuppa and a chat Simone kindly had a play around with my blog....notice the cool new fonts, my improved banner....  she really is the blogger wizz this girl!!

The boys enjoyed playing lego and playstation... the girls...well they dressed up and did their makeup!

Which required half of Simone's facial cleanser and some serious scrubbing to remove!

We had a yummy dinner and the kids then piled in the lounge in their sleeping bags to watch a movie.

Then I was lucky enough to meet three more bloggers that evening....

Meg from Growing Up
Penny from My Spirited Baby
and Lyns from Once Upon a Time

Simone made a delicious Chocolate Fudge cake - dairy free, gluten free AND egg free!! Yes I felt totally spoilt.  Although enjoying all the cake and sugar certainly didn't make me much of a photographer that night!!

enjoying bloggy company
We all chatted till about ...midnight!  So nice to meet these lovely ladies in person! Is it possible that bloggers are some of the nicest people you will ever meet!! (yes it IS!)

The next morning we went to Team G's church with them. I must say - I would move to Auckland just to go to their church! It rocked.

AND I got to meet the lovely Sammy from Cherished and saw gorgeous Gail again from Delightfully Diva-ish.

So a big thank you to Simone and the rest of Team G for their wonderful hospitality. 

An extra special thank you to Simone for all the wonderful gluten free, dairy free, egg free food. When you have food allergies at times it can make you feel like a total outcast... and when someone goes to so much trouble to make food you can indulge in, its very heartwarming.

I hope when we have a house of our own, we can return the invitation!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Softies Update!!!

Wow, there are so many amazing softies arriving everyday!!!

I've said it before and I'll say it again - you guys are AWESOME!!!!  and TALENTED - wow - such beautifully handcrafted gifts of love!!!

So here are some more pics of what is waiting at my house to wing its way to the children of Christchurch...
check out more here

the weekend that was...

We had a lovely weekend. After a busy few weeks it was lovely to take things slowly.

We went to visit my sister and niece and had a lovely afternoon/evening... just chilling out together....singing, taking photos... exactly what we moved back to NZ for ...FAMILY
oh and of course I had to take pics of my kiddies too!!!
today Im photographing the beautiful softies!!  so I'll be back later to share a post and some exciting news :)

Friday, March 18, 2011

Things Im Loving

Linking in with Paisley Jade

This week I'm loving....

making it to 9 3/4 years before this has happened!! And it happened while I was at my son's camp... poor Mum. I raced in to meet Mum and take her to get it xrayed and a cast popped on.

And she is being so brave. On Monday she got first in breaststroke at school swimming sports and was going to be competing in the interschool swimming sports next week!! We are now aiming to get our little netballing superstar ready and able for the upcoming season.

Loving.... the courage of my sweet boy.... its hard to see but the platform for this flying fox was about 5 metres high! (i wasnt going up there!)

Im loving that somewhere inside this almost (shhh... 40!) year old body I still have a child-like enthusiasm for doing crazy things....
like sneaking out in the dark, in the pouring rain and having a few go's on this giant waterslide at camp - WOOHOOO!! it was so much fun... pity I didn't have my glasses on to see all the parents and children who'd snuck out to watch my sneaky fun!  lol.

Loving... that three school camps in three weeks are OVER!!!! yippee! sooooo exhausted and Im sure we've walked a million miles.  Remind me I need to get FIT!

Oh and LOVING all the softies that are coming from all over the world (a big post coming up with more pics)

Loving... that its the weekend...ahhh...

Monday, March 14, 2011

Warning: slack blogger alert

Wow, my blogging is pretty slack at the moment. With school camps (three in three weeks), organising the Softies, visits from my hubby and other exciting things.. my blogging has been suffering!

I haven't yet told you about our great sleepover in Auckland, staying with Simone, and meeting four more gorgeous bloggers!!!

Or meeting Sarah from Kiwi Mummy blogs!

Or the sewing I have been doing,
 the pickles I have been making
 the baking I have been doing

Its all go here I tell you... but please don't desert me I will be back on board as soon as the next three day camp is over later this week... with lots to blog about!!!

And of course we are sadden and heartbroken watching the devastation in Japan, how unimaginable.  Our hearts and prayers are with the people of Japan.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Update: Softies for the Children of Christchurch

Wow, you guys are AMAZING!! I have softies arriving all the time and emails still arriving for people who want to send a softie. It is incredible the outpouring of love for these special Christchurch children.

And they are going to be so appreciated. I've heard stories about how traumatised the children are and with the aftershocks still going, it must be a living nightmare.

So heres a wee pic of some of the softies that have made their way to my doorstep so far....
they are just GORGEOUS!  I can't wait for them to go to their new homes.

A lovely bloggy friend is organising the transporting to Christchurch for me and we are working on which organisation will distribute them. Because Christchurch is still declared a 'state of emergency' the various organisations are still extremely busy.

I haven't put a close off date for this appeal yet, but Im thinking mid-late April would be good to get them sent down.

Thank you again to all  you wonderful people!!!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

The Greatest of these is Love

Love is....11 years of marriage, three children, two international moves, 8 different houses, a gazillion photos, a few extra pounds, wrinkles and grey hairs...we've weathered storms, we've rejoiced at triumphs....

but LOVE is SO much more.

On our wedding day we had this bible verse

(yes the lovely Simone did a beautiful post about this verse yesterday)

Everday I need to remind myself of those important words
Love is....
not proud
not boastful
does not envy
keeps no records of wrongs
always protects, trusts, hopes and perserveres
is not self seeking or easily angered
does not keep record of wrong doings


So even when the going is rough and 'life' gets in the way... we need to remind ourselves that LOVE stands before all in our marriage, that love will NEVER fail.

And now these three remain: faith, hope, love. But the greatest of these is LOVE (1 Corinthians 13:13)

Happy 11th Wedding Anniversary today, to my husband.  This year I pledge to kept this verse in the front of my fact I'm putting it on our wall, to remind us everyday of our commitment and also to remind us how far we've come.

I may not go so far as this though....
but I like the senitment.... lol...

11 years is pretty awesome and I am blessed to have a committed husband who puts his family before all else.  He is our provider, our rock. He is the man I have chosen to spend the rest of my life with and I will honour that vow, today and every day for the rest of my life.
Love ya heaps

Friday, March 4, 2011

A quick 5 things Im loving!

Im popping in for a quick post as we have just come back from camp and Im totally exhausted! but in a good, healthy, Ive walked 500 hundred miles in 3 days,way.

1. Im loving my beautiful eldest daughter.  She is A.M.A.Z.I.N.G.  This gorgeous girl has just left the most beautiful friends behind in Australia and already, after only 4 weeks at her new school has already made some new, lovely friends. I am so proud of her it chokes me up trying to write about it.
It just shows me what an incredible girl she is, because to have such special friends everywhere she goes, she is a pretty special person. I'm certain God has great plans for her. 

2. Loving New Zealand!! for soooo many reasons.  The last few days has been all about hiking through bush and 'back to nature' so Im loving pictures like these....

this is my daughter holding a Kauri huh!

3. Loving Whangarei blogger catch ups!! LOVING!! Although Im the slacker who hasnt done a proper post about our latest adventure.. but let me just say - it involved BIG LENSES, crocheting in the park, LOTS of giggling... totally stoked about all my new IRL friends! (oh and PJ taught me how to do a granny square!)

4. Loving the generosity and awesomeness of Bloggers from all around the world who are making softies for my Softies for the children of Christchurch Appeal.  YOU GUYS ROCK!!! Already the softies are flooding in. Each one is so beautifully made and so precious. I can just see the delight they will bring to those precious wee children. THANK YOU!!

5. And Im loving that tomorrow... we get to go and have a sleepover with Simone at Greatfun4kids!! EEK!!! So excited!!! AND as if that wasn't exciting enough - I also get to meet some more bloggers!! WOW!
It sounds like Simone has planned a weekend of awesomeness for us!! (are you jealous? huh? huh?) ..hehe.

My kids are super excited too, they love the Team G crew! 

So please excuse me, Im off for my beauty sleep  and I cant wait to tell you all about it when we get home.

(nah, Im not excited... MUCH!!!)

Linking up with Paisley Jade's  Things Im loving