What can i eat??

11 Oct

the start of a good life

I originally wrote this post back in 2013, and while I now am eating nightshades again, the struggle is still on to eat healthy and still have variety. It is so very easy to get stuck in a food rut! foodallergiesmojo

My food options are shrinking…. About a year and a half ago I went Gluten, Dairy and Egg free, just to try and see if it helped with my digestion and my migraines. Let me tell you how hard this was for me to commit to : I am a culinary graduate who has learned to love aged cheeses, eggplant, ethnic foods, and the list goes on and who has always always always loved baking. Get some  flour, butter, sugar and more butter and it’s fantastic. Baking was, and is something that is calming to me.

Enter my naturopaths’s suggestion of going off all three of the major food areas…

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Short Story Sharing – The Feud Changes

7 Oct

Happy Friday! This is something that came while I was trying to write on my novel… I’ve never written Western before so, keep that in mind. But I did have fun with it. Hope you enjoy.


“I take it you know me.”  His thumbs looped in his pockets, he leaned against the railing, ignoring the gun trained at his chest.

“Yer not welcome here.”

“That there was a dead giveaway.” He nodded at the gun, starting to shake from being held so long. “No need for it though. Just here to talk.”

“When have ya wanted to talk?” The voice still sounded rough, as if it wasn’t used much. He tried to distinguish just who he was talking to but the shadows and grime made it hard to tell.

“Never. But we’ve got ourselves a situation. One that bullets won’t fix.” He paused, watching the barrel steady, as if the holder adjusted their hold. “Well, bullets betwixt us won’t help. I figure we team up against them thieves so’s we keep our lives – and land.”

Finally the barrel lowered. He let out a bit of the breath he hadn’t been aware he’d been holding. The Shoman clan was known to be trigger-happy, shooting a man just for being alive. To come right up to the door like this was just asking to be shot. But he’d learned a long time ago that risks had to be taken sometimes.

Out of the shadows, a weathered hat and matted beard appeared for a stream of tobacco to shoot past him into the dirt below. “Ya want me ta trust you? A Hayden?”

It was said as a dirty word and Garrett Hayden clenched his jaw and fists, aching to take the old man down a peg or two. The hair on the back of his neck rose and instinct had him taking cover behind the wood pile to his right. He turned as he rolled, reaching for his pistol.

“Hayden! Yer a dead man, comin’ on our land!” Garrett scanned the line of trees for the back-shooter, keeping an eye on the old timer still on the porch. This time the voice was higher-pitched, but colder.

“Ya see, son, we aren’t the type ta trust a Hayden.” The old timer sat on a three-legged stool with his rifle across his lap and lit his pipe.

“I ain’t your son, pappy. I also ain’t asking you to trust me. Just to hear me out.” Garrett felt the sweat run down his back as he squatted, careful not sit too low and connect with his spurs. He made sure his voice carried across the clearing to the still-hidden shooter in the trees.

“Talk then!” Once again the voice squeaked on the end of the word and Garrett couldn’t help the chuckle that parted his lips.

“Don’t let Mack hear ya laugh – ya won’t be around long enough ta talk.” This time the old-timer’s voice was quiet, meant only for Garrett’s ears. Squinting at him, Garrett tried to remember hearing about a ‘Mack’ in all his tangles with this low-down family. Giving up on placing him, Garrett shifted.

“I ain’t talking like this. Either you come out or – ”

“Aw, Mack just come on and bring those rabbits. I’m half starved.”

“But, Pappy, Hayden’s – ”

“MACK!” Even Garrett jumped at the suddenness of Pappy’s yell. If he hadn’t seen Mack appear from behind a huge trunk, he wouldn’t have believed it.

“Mack’s as quiet as an Indian in them woods.” Once again Pappy’s voice was quiet and Garrett slowly stood, sizing up Mack holding a rifle in one hand and three rabbits in the other. The teen eyed him just as warily, taking in his height and the width of his shoulders with a twitch of his mouth.

“Hayden.” Once again the sneer was in the word but coming from a kid was more than Garrett could take.

“It’s Garrett.” He snapped.

Pappy nodded and kept smoking his pipe,”Garrett, ya’v got a plan to keep them varmints  off our land?”

Garrett sighed and wondered if this was worth it. Getting looked at as if he were some filthy no-good was getting tiring. What he’d like to do was leave them to their own, and if they got killed, what problem was that for him? Even as he thought it, he cleared his throat.

“As I see it, they’re gonna sweep through here with nary a thought to killing us. That is, if we don’t band together.”

“We’ll barricade in our house then, take em out one at a time.” Mack’s confidence brought Pappy’s chin up a little.

Garrett eyed the shack that looked like it’d been decaying for years. “Your house wouldn’t survive.” Before either could react, he continued, “Neither would mine. We’ve gotta meet ’em where they are. Catch ’em off guard.”

Pappy puffed on his pipe, his eyes squinting into the trees. “When?”


Pappy nodded once and pulled a pipe from a bucket behind him, offering it to Garrett. “Mack, call the boys in and cook them rabbits. We’re goin’ hunting tonight.”

The gleam in the old timer’s eye gave Garrett hope that they’d come through this alive.

But as men started trickling in, he knew he had to ask the question burning in his gut before too many got there. “You up for this?” When Pappy started, Garrett held his hand up. “That shakin’ don’t stop just cause you put a gun in your hand.”

Pappy sighed and tapped his pipe in his palm. “Notice that, did ya?”

“I tend to notice the barrel that’s shakin’ in my direction.”

“Don’t tell the boys.”

“It’s not mine to tell. Can you shoot straight?” Garrett kept his relaxed pose, careful not to twitch even his thumb in the direction of his gun. At Pappy’ nod, he  was glad that the old timer hadn’t gotten hot around the collar about being found out. He was dangerously outnumbered, alone against the whole clan. As if Pappy had heard his thoughts, he asked the question Garrett had dreaded.

“Where’s the rest of yer clan?”


Pappy slowly nodded, “The boys won’t know. Not from me.”

“‘Preciate that, Pappy.”

By this time, more than a dozen men had appeared from the woods and gathered around the fire, alternating between harassing Mack and sending Garrett hate-filled glances.

“It’s gonna be a long night.”  He puffed on his pipe, wondering if he’d end up dead by morning.

“That it is, son. Let’s hope yer plan works.”




Writing Short -Green Moment

4 Oct

Writing prompt time! “Write 25 sentences that all start with the word ‘green’. Just see if something interesting happens. Trust me. (use any color) ”

Here’s what I came up with!



Green leaves slowly fading to gold.

Green grass losing that touch of neon

Green eyes looking for the last wildflowers

Green house on a hill all alone


Green bottles reflecting the sun

Green sign on the roadside, leaning

Green preying mantis swaying with the stalk it’s on

Green beans dying on the vine

Green truck speeding by

Green ivy on the fence


Green galoches made for splashing

Green raincoat to keep one dry

Green scarf to warm one’s nose

Green swings lonely in the playground

Green gloves forgotten on a bench

Green ball covered in moss


Green  path filled with mud

Green balloon sailing over the trees

Green river flowing fast

Green feather found at last


Green door to let one in

Green chair to snuggle in

Green blanket to cover one’s toes

Green tea to sip on

Green eyes sleepy at last.


I hope you liked it!

Why don’t you give this prompt a try? Share your 25 sentences in comments, or share a link to them! I’d love to read them! 


Book Review – Sept 2o16

30 Sep

I’m pretty sure the end of September means it’s officially fall, doesn’t it? I obviously have no idea when it actually starts but it sure feels like it here! I’m loving being able to keep the back door open for some fresh, cool air. Abby is liking it too – being able to come in and out whenever she wants is right up her alley. It also means I can sit here at my desk and write while she plays in the sprinkler (she won’t play in it without being watched, oy). She’s mostly okay with this version of me being out there with her and I’m able to actually get some editing and blogging done. Thank goodness. Poor thing is going to be heartbroken when it’s too cold for the sprinkler though. Anyway, that’s enough about the puppy – on to books! bkrvwsept2016


A Call to Honor  ( The Price of Liberty #1) by Gilbert Morris – When Ben Logan is given the choice to join the Navy or go to jail, he quickly signs up for the Navy. He leaves behind his mother and a girl named Rachel and decides to live life to the fullest. But while serving in Hawaii, he changes his mind about God. His new faith is tested to the limits when bombs start falling on Pearl Harbor.

– this is the first in a long (7 books) series and once I’m through them all I’ll do a series review but since it’ll take me quite a while, I’ll review them separately now. Hopefully you don’t mind!  I haven’t read this series in several years now so I don’t remember very much about them. It is refreshing to read a book from a male point of view and the emotions just transferred themselves from Ben, to me… that does sound strange but I was talking to him as I was reading ‘don’t do it!’ ‘serves you right!’ etc…

City of Tranquil Light – When Will Kiehn feels God call him to go to China as a missionary, he leaves his family’s farm in the Midwest and goes. He falls in love with a fellow missionary, Katherine, and  after they wed, they move to Kuang P’ing Ch’eng – City of Tranquil Light – and settle in to offer medical and spiritual help to the people there. As the years go by, they endure much hardship – war, famine, floods, bandits – will their faith be enough to help them?

I reviewed this about a week ago, check it out!

Evidence Not Seen : A Woman’s Miraculous faith in the Jungles of World War II by Darlene Deibler Rose –  This is the true story of a young woman, newly married, surviving the jungles of New Guinea and four years in a Japanese prison camp. Her triumphs and strengthening of faith despite everything.

– I’m a quarter in to this book and while I am enjoying it, it’s not a light/breezy/readrightthrough type of story. I just have a feeling it’s probably going to make me cry. I also find myself comparing it to ‘city of tranquil light’ since I just read that one. This one, equally well-written, starts off emotions galore, there’s no easing into it like in city of tranquil light, so perhaps that’s part of the difference. But it is very well-written and I think it will be worth the read. It just might take me a while to get through it. ( side note, the synopsis I wrote is SHORT because the one I read on Goodreads tells a lot of the story, some I wish I didn’t know because now I’m pretty positive this is going to be super emotional to read through…. )

Vegan Slow-Cooking for Two or Just for You by Kathy Hester – This isn’t your ordinary cookbook – these recipes are quick to prepare in your 1.5 or 2 qt slow cooker. Ranging from coffee creamers to side dishes to dessert, you can make anything vegan that you long for!

– I have only made a few recipes from this so far (as I keep forgetting some key ingredients on my shopping trips, oy) but we’ve enjoyed them and I was surprised at how filling they were. That might sound silly but I have a hard time with staying full. And not eating meat tends to make that worse, but with these meals, I didn’t get hungry for about 3 hrs (which is good!). Once I get to the produce stand again I plan on making some more meals from this book =) 

Golden Retriever by Dog Fancy Magazine – Covering everything the owner of this friendly breed needs to know to be a well-informed caregiver, this book is easy to read with beautiful pictures of adorable puppies to adult Goldens to compliment the information.

– This book covers SO much. It was an impulsive grab at the library but I’m hoping to learn a few things, what with having a senior and a puppy. 

On my To-Read List:

The Color of the Star book 2 of The Price of Liberty by Gilbert Morris

Love’s Pursuit by Siri Mitchell

Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte

Kidnapped by Robert Louis Stevenson

What’s on your to-read list?



Health Update – 9/23/2016

23 Sep

How in the world can September already be almost over?! Although, the coming of all things pumpkin and fall does help ease the shock of it😉



Overall Health: since getting back on the majority of my vitamins/supplements I’ve been better – comparably. For about a week I was stuck on the couch due to unbelievable weakness and exhaustion. I haven’t been quite so negative. I haven’t had to nap so often lately, but sleeping at night has been really rough. I’ve been able to walk the dogs a few times a week, which benefits all 3 of us.

Treatment: I went in to my doctor the beginning of this week and we changed up what I’ve been taking, and she sent me home with several new things to start! I am currently off the Xiao Chai Hu Tang (possibly the cause of my extreme exhaustion last week) and have started taking Silver. (yes, silver! apparently while it’s very gentle on you, it kills things, who knew?) Tomorrow I start taking EHB, then if I don’t react negatively to that, 3 days later I start Garlic pills (oh joy). 3 days later, Vitamin E and then, you guessed it, 3 days after that, Copper pills. She’s also told me to start drinking 1 TB Apple Cider Vinegar in the mornings.

Migraines: Killer. They have been going from a 5 to an 8 (or higher) in the blink of an eye, making thinking (and anything else really) incredibly difficult.

Digestion and TMJ: Neither have changed here-which means they aren’t that good… but while my jaw has been hurting a lot, it doesn’t pop as much as it used to! Silver lining right there!

Mood: It’s been better overall this past month, thank goodness. I feel like I mostly am back to myself although I do still feel a tad anti-social

Sleep: Except for the past few nights, it’s been atrocious. Of course, the nights I do sleep better I have nightmares..sigh.

Memory: Once again, it hasn’t improved but aside from freaking out late one night because I couldn’t remember words to songs that I’ve known for ages, I haven’t noticed any worsening.

Daily Vitamins:

Clonidine – for most of this month I was taking 3 a day but since Sunday it’s backed off to 1 or 2 !!!!!

off the Xiao Chai Hu Tang

Pulsatilla and Belladonna – finally got some more of these amazing tinctures!!!

Here’s a full list  – although I will have to update this next month!

Stick around and check out my other health updates!


Symptoms of my Lyme


Fighting Lyme and Migraines

The Big Health Update


Next week is the monthly Book Review, come back and check it out!

Have a fabulous Fall weekend,





City of Tranquil Light Book Review

20 Sep

Friends, this book sat on my shelf for YEARS without me ever reading it. Not even a ‘read a few pages and put it down’ read. Never. Do you know what made me finally pull it out and give it a try? Running across an old email from my sister in law, recommending a few books (thanks Michaela!) , and this was on it.



This story pulled me in right from the start and I quickly fell in love with Will, Katherine, Chung Hao and the descriptions of China. When Will Kiehn feels God call him to go to China as a missionary, he leaves his family’s farm in the Midwest and goes. He falls in love with a fellow missionary, Katherine, and  after they wed, they move to Kuang P’ing Ch’eng – City of Tranquil Light – and settle in to offer medical and spiritual help to the people there. As the years go by, they endure much hardship – war, famine, floods, bandits – will their faith be enough to help them?

Caldwell writes in an enchanting memoirlike way – alternating between Will and Katherine’s perspectives, each come alive in a remarkable way. And as these characters reminded me strongly of a former pastor and his wife, it added another depth of emotion to it , as I could so easily see these people doing what Will and Katherine did – living a hard life in response to their God’s call.

I highly recommend this book, although perhaps not for younger teens as some of the violence is described. I am planning on getting Caldwell’s first novel, The Distant Land of my Father, next time I get to the library!


The Tears of My Heart

16 Sep

I fond this in my drafts folder earlier this week and decided that it is ready to be shared. While I now have a diagnosis and somewhat-of-a-plan for a cure, these feelings do so frequently overwhelm me and I once again, have to remind myself of the unfailing love of my Saviour.


I feel the tears fill my eyes. One by one they drop to my cheek, and follow the curve down to my chin. Drip. Drip. Drip. I reach up to wipe them away, but what’s this? My cheek is dry, as are my eyes. As I rub my fingers together I realize the tears are not outside, but in. It is inside that is aching. Longing. Crying. But these tears cannot be wiped away so easily with a delicate handkerchief or manicured nails. These require connection, vulnerability and love. Confession of the heart is of the utmost importance if one wants to heal it. But what do I have to confess?

Anger. Frustration. Hurt. All over seemingly-unanswered prayer. Anger that this pain has inhibited 10 years of my life. Frustration that a cure remains beyond my grasp. Hurt that I cannot go on as those around me – event after event.

But this type of contemplation only brings tears that fall onto my cheek. Tears that will need to be wiped away before they fall from my trembling chin. It would be better, rather, to focus on getting through the pain. Accepting my limitations and counting the many blessings I am surrounded with.  So, while the aching inside me continues, I will work to let Him heal it. For I, on my own, cannot heal such a hurt. Even while the tears threaten to overflow my eyes, I will lift my face to the sun and praise Him who has made me and sustained me and blessed me beyond measure.

“Bless the Lord O my soul, and all that is within me. 

Bless His holy name!

Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits,

who forgives your iniquity, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit,

who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy, who satisfies you with good,

so that your youth is renewed like the eagles wings.”

Psalm 103:1-5

*If you have or are struggling with unanswered prayer I encourage you to keep faith! Continue asking and seeking the Lord. His answer might not be the one you (or I) want but His plan far surpasses any plan we can invent. He is the author of everything, give your pain and struggles to Him daily. He can handle them.


Unexpected Side Effects of Chronic Pain

13 Sep

So guys, I’ve been thinking about doing this post for ages, I just wish I’d written down all the little things when I thought of them… because trust me, there’s a lot more than this.


-you get used to people checking up on you ‘are you okay?’ ‘do you need anything?’

– stairs are not.nice.ever. = you get passed by 60 year olds…

– you decide you’d rather have weight loss than weight gain, and then realize how terrible of a person that probably makes you

-traveling loses quite a bit of its appeal when you realize it takes at least a day to recuperate, you won’t be able to keep up with whoever you’re visiting, if the PAIN hits you’re in a new environment/probably won’t be able to deal with it like you need to, faking feeling better than you do is something that just happens, etc.

– you become the person that carries around a mini pharmacy in their purse (and people still wonder why you carry such a large one)

-standing in lines makes you cranky, achy and wonder why you ever leave your house

-Light PHYSICALLY hurts. no joke.

– Sound does too

-you have a pill box for all your daily pills

-the things your brain chooses to remember is baffling

-going to two or three stores in one trip is EXCITING (yes, the realization of how pathetic this is does dawn on you every time)

-you’ve rarely answered a ‘how are you’ question with ‘i’m great!’

-learning to balance productivity with what your body says is….interesting


Basically, pain takes away your independence. But still we fight, day by day to pretend we still have that independence and inexhaustible energy that someone our age is supposed to have.

I just had this verse pop into my head

“They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.” Jeremiah 17:8


what would you add to this list?!


Currently: Sept 2016

9 Sep
I found this post from a few years ago and decided it would be fun to do it again! Enjoy!
making: almond milk is in the soaking stage!
cooking:  nothing/because you don’t really cook almond milk =)
drinking: water, lots of water
reading:  City of Tranquil Light
wanting: to live close enough to a dog park that I can walk to it
crafting: gifts!
wishing: all my dear friends lived near me 
enjoying: listening to Count Basie
waiting: for the movie I’m transferring from vhs to dvd to finish
liking:  this cooler weather
wondering: if my health will ever get back to what it should be
loving: being able to keep the house cleaner
hoping: I can edit my book without too much revision
smelling: the diffuser
needing: more sleep, less pain
wearing: comfy pajamas because I can
noticing: my mood is a bit better this week – yay!
thinking: I really should walk the dogs today
bookmarking/pinteresting:  fall decorations and outfits; inspirational quotes
thanking: Abby for finally calming down; my OH for being such a great support and listener in times of need ; a friend for guiding me back to God when I get to whining
giggling:  some seriously funny things on pinterest lately
feeling: tired and yet content with where we are right now; disbelief that Abby is a year old ; excited I’ve finished the first draft of my novel

Copy and paste and play along! Leave your link below!

Short Story Sharing – My story

6 Sep

This is sort of a short story sharing/chronic pain post.

I just found this on my laptop – I vaguely recall starting to write my pain-journey down soon after I married OH… and here it is! This is just a snippet of it =)

I have recently read these termed as invisible illness.  Something that you live with daily but the average person can’t see or tell that they are there.  Living with them has made me more compassionate toward others. They have taught me to be able to look past the obvious and search for the meaning behind their negative words, hurtful actions and painful silence.  They have taken my dreams and then taught me to learn to dream again. I have grown stronger in my sense of who I am through these years. I have learned to speak up, to share my opinion and to believe that I have a right to be heard.

I am more than my health issues.

Now before you start worrying that this is a story of a rise to egotism, let me reassure you that I am still the girl next door –happiest-in-the-country-than-the-city that I always have been. This is a story of faith, family and overcoming obstacles I never dreamed of as a young girl in pigtails and overalls.

When I was young, we lived on acreage that my parents owned, passed down from my grandparents. All five of us kids grew up climbing the trees, playing hide and seek and running between houses to see our extended relatives on this land. I have always loved that fact. I can remember staying the night at my grandparents’ house that they built themselves; and a skip away my great aunt would teach me crotchet and embroidery in a house they also built.  My great grandma also lived in that house for a time.

I would daydream about who I would become – teacher? Stay-at-home mom?  Business exec? Jumping horses in the Olympics?  My dreams were all over the board. It changed from year to year, but always I knew that I would be successful and able to take on any challenge thrown my way. By the time I reached high school, my dreams had shrunk a little, the way that everyone’s do I imagine. I was lucky to have a group of friends to help me transition to the world of hard teachers, overblown emotions and bad cafeteria food.  In that time, one of my ‘invisible diseases’ slowly started.  I, completely unaware what it would come to mean in a few years’ time, shrugged it off and continued ahead in my life.


Graduation came and I was relieved at finally getting to move ahead with my future. I had, by this time, no idea what I truly wanted to do and held a great deal of fear inside at failing.  I hid it well and congratulated my friends as they each in their turn headed out of town or state to attend one college or another. I decided to take a year off of school until I had a clearer idea of what I wanted to dedicate my life to and ended up working low-level jobs that barely offer enough money to spend and save.

By the end of that year, I was no closer to a plan than I had been in the beginning but I signed up for classes at our local community college. I remember being so scared of doing this on my own that I cried as I drove there that first morning. I took the required prerequisite classes, really only enjoying  that moment when the day of school was done. I made a few friends but my shyness was well developed by that time and I stuck to the back of the class.

About a year into prerequisite classes, I struggled and struggled with making the decision to attend the culinary institute on campus. I loved the thought of learning more about baking  so I finally screwed up my courage and signed up for culinary. The hardest thing I’ve done in my life up to that point was to show up every day and try my best.  It was during this time of intense stress, lack of sleep and confidence, that my first invisible disease accelerated its appearance.  Advil and Ibuprofen became a companion of mine to get through some days. The pain escalated as I fought to keep up with the others in my class. Lack of concentration, ability to find the right words and the feeling of living in a fog all came crashing down on me and I wasn’t sure what had happened to who I had been. The struggle that class had been before, had just doubled and some days, tripled. A kitchen is where you must be at your best, ready to run your own legs off to prepare a meal for someone else. You have to be able to multi-task several times over – and that ability had just been taken from me.


a life journal

Lyme Light Lady

shedding light on chronic lyme disease

Traipsing After Jane

The Writing Life of Pamela Aidan


Change the way you think about fashion.