Monday, March 1, 2010


I've been over at typepad for a few months and love it there! Please come check me out:

The Musician's Wife new blog:

Monday, September 28, 2009

Manic Monday

We lost power sometime before 2:45am. It sucked. We're back on now! Woo hoo!

Bigger news, I have purchased a domain name for my own 'real' website for this blog. I want to make it look amazing and take it from this boring stuff to a whole new level.

More to come!

Monday, September 21, 2009

Gluten Free Product Review #1: BoxedGF Mac & Cheese

I know there are already a bunch of websites and blogs that do this, but perspective is a precocious thing and I thought maybe my point of view may be of value to someone out there, so here we go:

Road's End Organics: Organic (redundant, eh?) Mac & Chreese (yes, Chreese) Alfredo Style Whole Grain Brown Rice Pasta

(Sorry about the terrible picture, I took it with my camera phone.)
I purchased this at Walmart of all places, (more on that later) because I was looking for an alternative to the Annie's Rice Pasta Mac & Cheese which the kids tolerate but don't really enjoy. It cost right around four dollars, which is quite a lot for a box of instant food purchased at a discount store. I was hoping it was worth it...

It wasn't.

Nutritional Information:
I tried to keep in mind that this was a fully vegan product. It is labeled gluten free, soy free, lactose free and cholesterol free. It has 310mg of salt which you cannot taste a single milligram of. There is little fat (3g), 8g of fiber (which is great), and 8g of protein (which is also really good). The cheese sauce has nutritional yeast in it which is free of candida albicans that people with chronic yeast infections should try to avoid and also adds a small amount of iron, a mid-level amount of B12 and folate.

I tried the pasta by itself, which was fine, just like all the brown rice pasta I've had since being Dx'd with celiac about a year ago. Then came the sauce...

On the side of the box is a little explanation of why they call their cheese alternative chreese. It says "All our ingredients are plant based, like trees. This package is made from 100% recycled paperboard. No trees were chopped down to produce it. Organic ingredients are farmed without theuse of synthetic chemicals. this helps preserve soil and groundwater and allows plants, animals and trees to thrive." It's kind of cute but a bit of a stretch. It's also hard to say.

Anyway, the chreese is made of brown rice flower, enriched nutritional yeast and the above mentioned vitamins. B1 and B2, however, are on the ingredient list but their percentages are not mentioned on the Nutrition Facts label. Also included in the mix is green lentil flour, salt, garlic powder, onion powder and basil. All the ingredients are organic.

When mixing the powder with the milk (according to the directions you can also use water) it seemed nice and thick. It was an interesting greenish gray color which I didn't mind too much compared with the practically fluorescent orange of other boxed m&c's.

However, when added to the pasta (or rather, when the pasta was added to the chreese as per the directions) the whole concoction looked rather...gross. I've eaten plenty of things that looked gross but tasted wonderful (so have my kids) so my hopes were not too dashed by this development.

Here are the results of the taste test:

  1. Smell: bland, nothing exciting either way in this department.
  2. Mouth feel: Gross. I'm sorry, there is no other way to describe it. I am sure I mixed the chreese correctly and well but it still felt powdery on my tongue. The stuff literally coated my tongue with powdery yuckiness.
  3. Taste: Bland, bland, bland. It felt like eating baking powder or flour. Hoping that the lack of taste was the problem I added several good shakes of salt on my second bite and still it was not good. I spit the second bite out.
  4. Overall: I do not recommend this product. The combination of terrible mouth feel and lack of any discernible taste made this product extremely unpalatable.
I don't like writing negative reviews but this is the honest truth. None of my kids liked it either, even though I didn't act like I was giving them something I didn't enjoy.

People used to vegan foods may enjoy this product so I am going to give a box to a friend and see what she thinks. I will append her review to this post when I get it.

So, in the end, I have yet to find a good gluten free alternative to boxed macaroni and cheese. Which may be a good thing, since if I want the good stuff I'll have to make it myself out of real, whole ingredients. However, the benefits of boxed m&c are great when the kids are being watched by a friend or sitter.

*New development: my 8 year old and 4 year old have asked to try it again. I'll append their reactions in a bit. Also, after sitting for a few minutes the stuff has gained a smell that is a not unpleasant basily-garlicy smell. It does not taste any better to me, however...I spit that bite out too.

Sunday, September 20, 2009

A day day day to clean clean clean...

Seriously, my house is a D-I-S-A-S-T-E-R.

However...I happened to log onto The Pioneer Woman's blog to catch up on the few months I've missed. Her blog is wonderful, it is awesome and it is inspiring. It makes me want to write and take pictures and cook...all things I LOVE to do. If you've never been there, go. It's a great site.

However (again) my house, as previously mentioned, is a MESS.

Brad left for the weekend with L-Boogie and some other assorted males (okay, not assorted, they were a set--Matt, Gavin & Ephraim, all related, Dad, kid, kid, in that order.) to Ocean Shores for the weekend. Man time.

This previous week we've all be sick with icky flu/colds so the house, of course, was the first to go down the tubes. Not to mention that I was gone for six days down to SoCal for a funeral the week before 'sickie week'. Needless to say (but I'll say it anyway) our home is scary messy and I need to fix it.

I'd just rather read blogs and write on mine. HAS been a while.

More on my trip and what exactly I do when I can't sleep and my husband is gone later.

For now...dishes.


Wednesday, June 24, 2009


I write a pet column for a local paper. The article I am currently working on is about summer pet safety you may not know about.

I'm writing part of it on car safety...and I don't mean leaving a dog in a hot car! Check out this video.

Now go get a safety harness for your dog or pet carrier!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Darn it all to heck!

I'm gluten intolerant...gluten (anything made of or that has touched barley, wheat, rye) makes me tired, achy, cranky and gives me tummy issues of which I need not go into detail.

So this time of year, with all the get togethers and BBQ's I've made a commitment to get gestapo and not get sick from eating the wrong things at other people's parties. My two older kids are sensitive to gluten as well, so I'm trying to protect their poor little bodies too.

Today we had Loren's 2nd grade end of the year BBQ. I came prepared...I bought GF (gluten free) hambuger buns and signed up to bring the chips so I could make sure those were GF too. Someone made this great pesto rice I was eating it I overheard the person who brought it say "yes, it looks like rice but it's really pasta!"

Darn it!!

Then, thinking I was safe at least with my burger, I found out that the person making the burgers put Jonny's seasoning on them...which has soy sauce powder which inludes a nice helping of wheat.

Darn it all to heck!!

I've no idea what to do in situations like this, because I didn't come prepared with something else I could have eaten...just chips wasn't going to cut it. I realize now that I either need to ask lots of questions BEFORE or just bring my own...well...everything!

Ug...not fun.

Book Recommendation!! The GFree Diet by Elisabeth Hasselbeck.
Read this book if:
  1. You have Celiac Disease or gluten intolerance.
  2. You know someone who has the above mentioned issues.
  3. You have IBS, IBD or any other small intestinal problems or disease.
  4. You have any unexplained medical problems or symptoms.
  5. You would like to change your diet to include more whole foods and less processed foods like breads, pastas, cookies and other treats.