Sunday, September 30, 2012

GF Baking Helps

So, I'm about to make {or attempt to} make a decent loaf of bread for the kids. I really want to get Trev to eat it again, but with his yeast sensitivity {and oats} it presents a small {but feels SO large} challenge.

Here are some Gluten Free baking tips I've found:

First, you can substitute equal parts baking soda and lemon juice instead of yeast.

Also, I found that you can similarly use powdered Vitamin C {ascorbic acid} and baking powder. 

Here is just some dang good information to know when attempting to bake gluten free.

GF baking tips... you must read this.

This is a good one too. Talks about the use of gums.

Hope this helps lighten the load a little. I'm just going to use what I have on hand today, but I will probably experiment with some different things in the future. I'll let you know the results.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Milk Allergies

Wow. I stumbled upon this website this morning. It's called Go Dairy Free.

It has a really thorough section with the research and information on food allergies. It has some recipes. It's a really great resource sight. I started reading up on milk allergy information. WOW. Some of this I have been wondering, some I knew and some described my flipping kids to a T.

Take a look... it's good information to know.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Allergy Free, Gah!

Well, the time has come... for our household to go allergy free. Gah! The thought is so overwhelming it makes me a little nauseous, literally. Not to mention, the thought of not eating some of my favorite things makes me devastatingly sad. I -LOVE- FOOD! For the textures and tastes. I'm also, a picky eater... and while I don't usually let other people know it, I'm kind of a snob about food and how it tastes. So the thought of completely eliminating Gluten- which gives breads and baked goods it's elasticity and softness, makes me a little sad, it's the DAIRY. Oh, my. That might kill me.

Let me explain a little as to my reasons why I am going to attempt what my be my suicide.

MY FAMILY'S HEALTH. This past week of what I thought was a stomach bug {but after speaking with the nurse at the peds office, we don't think it was a bug...} has been AWFUL. My kids have been miserable. Also, {he's going to be pissed I'm telling you this} Jeffrey has IBS sometimes, and really frequently has migraines and headaches. I'm pretty confident, if he were tested, he would have some food sensitivities. He HATES going to the doctor for anything... so if we can become healthier by simply increasing our grocery bill, and decreasing our doctors bills... I'm all in. Our bodies are temples, right? So why poison them slowly and live miserably.

Bailey- we've been a little lax about letting her have gluten and dairy here and there for the past few months. In the past month or so, she has had much more diarrhea, and has thrown up about 5 or 6 times... random waking in the night and puking. Then she feels fine. The dark circles under her eyes have gotten puffy and much worse. She complains about her stomach hurting A LOT more now.

Trevor- pretty much ALWAYS has a stomach ache. He has diarrhea on a regular basis. He was doing a little better with the constant whining. But the past month, it has gone back to what it was before. I don't mean normal 2 year old whining. I mean full on hysterics on an ALL day basis, and a lack of ability to self calm. I'm pretty sure he is malnourished, because he is such a picky eater that he eats like a bird and gets very little fruits and veggies {or meats or beans, or grains...} and I can only sneak so much into a smoothie. His gut is just so messed up, and he is miserable most of the time.

His sensitivities include: Tomatoes, Wheat, Oats, Peanuts, Garlic, Yeast, Soy
It's dang near impossible to feed him, between these and his texture aversions {which he is in feeding therapy for and are improving}.

Callen- is a living garbage disposal, for the most part. His allergy test came back pretty much negative for everything except Oats. So we got excited and started letting him have dairy and gluten, and peanut butter... etc. Well, he has been miserable for the past 2 weeks. Part of that was teething. However, that tooth popped through and he is still not feeling great, or eating great. He threw up this week too. He has been having random bouts of screaming and crying {which is completely abnormal for him}, he broke out in hives three nights ago {but hasn't left the house in a week or tried any new foods}.

Adeline- I'm scared to find out what kind of food issues she might have.

So, in fine, sensitivities tend to take time to manifest, because you have to have enough in your system to cause the reaction. Allergies, tend to have a more instant reaction. My hypothesis- is they are all having reactions to foods they are eating.

While I won't be cutting out ALL of these allergens for everyone... because Trev's limit food choices so much. We will be eliminating Gluten, Dairy, and Soy. Those are the big ones.

This means MUCH more time making things from scratch {to avoid the BHT and other preservatives in processed GF foods}, and because it's MUCH cheaper... I have a mill and can make my own flour.

It means {GASP} experimenting in the kitchen to get recipes to where I want them... I HATE experimenting... I think it's because:

1- if something doesn't taste very good, I can't just make myself eat it... I'll gag.

2- I HAAAATE wasting ingredients and food if it doesn't turn out very good. Then I feel like a jerk, because there are people down the street somewhere literally starving.

It also means, the holidays are going to be much more difficult, since we travel all over town and there are never any foods the kids can eat. So I will pretty much be packing a bag of food for each meal we have to go to... GAH! Not just for holidays, lunches, outings.... I'm exhausted just thinking about it... but I don't feel like I have much of a choice.

It also means, we're going to have to be more ballsy with people instead of giving in for their convenience. We're going to have to stand our ground and hopefully people will have the decency to respect our wishes for our kids health and diets. I mean, if I'm packing all the food they should need, there is no reason not to stick to it, right... since I've done all the hard work for them.

So to all of you who are having to go allergy free as well, here are some blogs and sites that I've found helpful. And PLEASE, if you have found some that you like... share them below in the comments with me. Please don't post them on my facebook page- I will never find them again. If they are in the comments I will be able to keep track of them!

I only know some, and would LOVE any help or resources available.

Adventures of A Gluten Free Mom

Chocolate Covered Katie

The Baking Beauties

Living Without

Thanks so much for reading this heinously long post/rant. Wish us luck! I'll probably post recipes here, when they are good enough to share!

That said, I adapted a banana chocolate chip muffin from a Bob's red mill recipe and it was pretty dang tasty.

This is the original Bob's Red Mill Recipe. You can use it to adapt your own recipes if you want. I made some blueberry muffins from it. Though I doubled the blueberries and left out the pecans. It serves as a good dry base.

Here is my adaptation for the Banana Choc. Chip muffins:


1 egg
1/2 C. vanilla almond milk {or coconut milk would be yum}
2 Tbsp. {heaping} Brown Sugar
3 Tbsp. natural applesauce
2 Tbsp. Flax Meal
1 C. Rice flour
1/2 tsp. sea salt {fine}
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1/4 C. mini choc. chips {I use Enjoy Life brand- for allergy free}
2 tsp. baking powder
splash of vanilla
2 smooshed bananas

Preheat oven to 425. Grease muffin pan {makes 6 full size or 24 minis}.
Mix everything together and spoon in by TBSP. for minis. Bake for 17-20 min. {about 10 for minis}.

Try not to eat them all before your kids wake up from their nap! It took will power! See: 

My intention was to freeze some, to eat later... that didn't happen. 

Thursday, September 13, 2012

 Hello, World!! I'm almost 3 weeks old!
This little lady is GREAT... aside from her massive appetite. She gets that honest. When I'm not starving myself, I eat like a hog. I guess I figure... if I'm going to be hungry all the time, I might as well be skinny too! Except, I've been trying to change my ways, because it's just not healthy, and I'm a BEAST when I don't have food, and my family shouldn't have to put up with that. 

However, I digress.  
 I LOVE baby feet. Seriously. I do. I HATE adult feet. Wouldn't touch 'em with a ten foot pole. I guess because baby feet are so clean and tiny and sweet and adorable. I love this shot. EVEN THOUGH, I cut her heels off and it's centered slightly lower than what I was aiming for... I was holding her so I had my arm stretched out and was pretty much shooting blindly and hoping it would actually be focused AND centered properly. Big demands, I know.
 These two are alright too, I guess... just not what I had in mind. 

 I also love tiny little baby hineys. She has the tiniest hiney I've ever seen. I didn't think you could get any smaller than Trevor's hiney. It was basically a continuation of thighs with a butt crack. Addie, however, has THE tiniest hiney, ever. It's so dang cute. The diaper makes her butt look big, and it was full at the time. Remember how she is a bottomless pit? Yeah, so she pees a lot too.   

 Sweet baby girl. She is so good. Except this afternoon she was apparently starving and not wanting to take a nap.... bad when you're trying to set up some pictures. Callen wouldn't leave her alone... and every time she'd get asleep, the other kids would bang something or scream or cry and wake her up... it was glorious... I'm lying. It was not glorious at all.

She actually does not completely hate belly time. That's great news!
We are adjusting pretty well to having four kids. It's really not so bad. Granted... she is a pretty easy baby, soooo that helps. Our spending has gone down because I avoid shopping at all costs. But, today... we had to go to Walmart. I had put it off too long, aaand she screamed in the Baby Bjorn... the whole way through the store. I got SO many looks... half of pity and half of disdain that I was letting her cry... WHAT THE FREAK AM I SUPPOSED TO DO? I didn't have much of a choice. People like that make my blood boil... I used to be that person, B-T-W. Man, have I eaten many entire humble pies over the last 5 years.

Anyways, my eyes are randomly closing involuntarily. So I bid you adieu.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The New Girl {and her birth story}

 I'm going to apologize now for the lack of editing and many typos. I'm far too lazy right now to bother with re-reading this. Yes, I know they are there. No, I'm not illiterate. I'm just lazy and would rather snuggle my babies.

41 weeks and 3 days {10 days past due}

This little lady {and I do mean little, she is SO tiny!} already likes to make me nuts {as if I don't do that on my own}.

Adeline Elizabeth Shaw, graced us with her presence on August 18, 2012 at 11:12 p.m. via water-birth at Fruitful Vine Birthing Center. She weighed in at a whopping 7lbs. 4oz and 21 inches long {the runt}. She was a full pound less than my smallest baby {Bailey}. Hope Terrell and Shea Cintron were the midwives in for the long haul that weekend. They were awesome. The entire staff at Fruitful vine is pretty much awesome.

Stop reading here if you don't want to hear about the birth. 

Here is the birth story. It shouldn't get TOO yuck... it was fast and furious. Also, I realize you might not care about some of the gory details, but I want to remember what went down so that I can pass it along when she gets old enough to ask. Also, so that when I get baby hungry in a few years, I remember that I don't want to do it again! Here goes... 

Saturday morning {~1:20 a.m.} I was laying on my side and felt a pop. I thought "mmm... was that my water?" I didn't feel any water leakage, so I flipped to my back to get more comfortable and then the water started flowing. Jeffrey was up using the bathroom and threw me a towel so I went and got on the toilet to let it all out. Then decided that I'd just sit in the shower to avoid wearing a maxi pad... those things are awful.

I noticed that it was green and I was pretty sure it was probably meconium  and I started freaking out, thinking I might have to go to the hospital. I called Hope {midwife on call} and sent her a picture. Luckily it was only mild to moderate meconium and she said we were fine, to track contractions and call her around 7am to let her know my progress.

I texted her about 8 am because I had regular contractions until about 3am and then I passed out and hadn't had many since then. The baby had also stopped moving around despite the apple juice, brisk walk and breakfast I'd had. Hope was only about 15 minutes away and stopped by to check things out {God, bless her.}. Everything was fine, I was about 4cm and baby was really low and I was more effaced than the day before. Baby was Sunny Side Up, though, and she needed to turn.

So I took castor oil at her recommendation to get a regular contraction pattern going. I Sat on the toilet a while off and on, sewed a little skirt that coordinated with a onesie, and hemmed a receiving blanket.  Then I took a nap. Then things started to pick up about 3pm. The bishop came over {he lives a few houses down} and helped Jeffrey give me a blessing and we left the house shortly there after to go to the birthing center.

We got there and Hope checked me again and I was about 4.5cm and was very effaced, baby was at +1 or +2 station {I think... I'm already getting details confused}. So, Jeffrey and I got settled and then got bored... and chatted with Hope and Shea a while. Then I'd noticed that my contractions had slowed down. I started walking and jogging {yes, jogging} the halls and they'd come back. I'd sit down to rest... nothin'. They'd stop.

I'd like to add that at this point the irritation on my hiney was downright painful, just from the castor oil alone, let alone the pressure and rubbage from jogging/walking... it was AWFUL. At this point, I'm getting tired and over the pain. Any time I sat down or stopped moving, the contractions stopped. We started alternating Blue and Black Cohosh Tinctures every 15 minutes {they taste like really bad liqour... but altogether bearable. The Castor Oil however, is of the devil. I'm gagging just thinking of it} and that helped keep them coming... until they'd stop again.

Hope checked me again around 9:00 or 9:30p.m. I was at about 5cm but otherwise completely ready. We had a sit down to determine where we wanted to go from there.

I was torn. I was really scared for my ass. Literally, and how awful it would be after delivery... and part of me wanted the epidural just for my rear's sake and to get it over with. I was also physically and emotionally drained at this point. My freaking butt hurt SO, SO, bad. Part of me was terrified to end up in a hospital with whatever doctor might be on call and didn't have the slightest idea who I was, or what I wanted out of my birthing experience. I surely didn't want to stay in the hospital for an extra two days and wrack up those bills just to get neglected treatment.

Jeffrey was getting worried and suggested we give it until 11-11:30pm and if nothing had happened we would go to the hospital. He also suggested that I stop walking the halls and relax in the tub for a little while... which sounded heavenly at this point, but I didn't want to be the slacker who wasn't pulling her weight to get that kid out.

I got in the tub and Shea {midwifery student} started the tinctures again and we listened to some Enya and tried to relax.

Around 10:00 p.m. I started having contractions... fairly good ones. Around 10:45 p.m. I started feeling some pressure so hope checked me and I was at 6cm and she could easily feel the baby's head. I asked her how much longer she thought it'd be. She said probably within the hour because of the strength of the contractions I was having.

I went to the bathroom, and really felt pressure and almost like I needed to push. I made Jeffrey get them and asked them if that's even possible to go from 6-10cm in an hour... and they said they've seen it in minutes. So I thought, "Oh shit, I should get back in the tub SOON."

I got in the tub. Started feeling some serious contractions and loooootttttssss of pressure. Oh MY GOSSSHHHHH!! I had to start pushing. I pushed for about 1 minute... oh geez, ring of fire! A few pushes and out came baby... little Adeline... and I mean LITTLE. She was so tiny. She still is. She has some SERIOUSLY scrawny chicken legs.

She did eventually turn, thankfully {during about a 15 minute long contraction}. The transitional period was QUICK but I was able to manage {and cuss a whole lot less, but screamed louder, apparently}  because there were very short breaks in between contractions and pushes. I used them to ground myself and breath and calm myself. So in that respect it was easier and less intense than Callen's. Callen was easier to push out for some reason. Probably because my body pretty much convulsed him out on it's own. With Addie, I was making a conscious controlled effort to push her out and was aware of everything I was feeling. But it still seemed like more work and harder to get her out, even though she was almost 2 pounds smaller.

Recovery would have been amazing if my butt hadn't gotten tore up.  Talk about PAIN. Forget any pain in the ladyland {which I didn't have}. It was the literal pain in my ass. THAT, was dang near unbearable. In fact, it was at least a week before I felt ANY relief. I was so worried about my bum, that without any shame I called my best friends dad {who is a proctologist} to ask him what I should do. But I know you don't want to hear about that nastiness, and I don't want to relive it. EVER. Desperate times.... desperate measures.

When I start getting baby hungry in a few years... Jeffrey's job is to remind me how awful the pain and castor oil was. Did you get that Mr. Shaw? Ugh. The Castor Oil. Have you ever tasted it? IT'S REVOLTING. Seriously, I took one sip, right as Jeffrey walked in the kitchen and I started to gag over the sink... he looked at me like I was crazy. He almost got punched. The worst part, is once you get it down... you burp it up AAALLLLLLL day long... so then you have to try to hold it down every single time.

Awful. Pure evil.

Anyhow, for all of you who like the gory details... there you are, I did leave a lot of it out {the gory stuff}... but you get the gist.

Sweet Adeline... I'd do it all again for you... you are so sweet and sleepy. Best baby so far. Keep up the good work, lovey.

Post Note: YES. Yes, I did go through and edit out a lot of the grammatical mistakes. I couldn't stand it. There are still plenty, though.