Tuesday, March 08, 2016

Gluten Free Bulk Pancake Mix

I have been trying to simply some things at home as well as teach more independence for the girls.  I now have my oldest making pancakes using this bulk mix.  This mix can be prepared in advance and makes about 4 batches.  Each batch makes about 8-10 pancakes.
Ingredients 
  • 2 cups tapioca/arrowroot starch
  • 2 1/4 cups sorghum flour
  • 1/2 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1 cup chickpea flour
  • 4 tablespoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt

To Make Pancakes
  • 2 cups mix
  • 1 1/2-2 cups milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla (optional)
  • chopped apple (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon (optional)


Friday, February 26, 2016

Meet our Baby Isaiah

So it has taken me a little to write this post.  I have been  preoccupied, falling in love with our little boy.  Our precious son Isaiah arrived on February 18, 2016.  We are already so in love with him, our hearts are full.

For those of you who are interested in the birth story, I thought this would be a great place to write it out.  Isaiah was due February 16.  During the week leading up to this date I had been having a lot more Braxton Hicks and some other more "suspicious" contractions.  Overall I felt they were stronger than the regular BH but wasn't sure if it was the real thing.  On Isaiah's due date, our region was hit with a terrible snow storm.  I was warned by my midwife not to do anything that could induce labour.  No one wanted to drive in it! It was the one day in the week I really was hoping he would stay inside.
The amount of snow we received on his due date!

The next day I had midwife appointment and was told it could be in a day or so.  After much debate we decided that the girls should go to their Opa and Oma's house and that the dog should go to the kennel.  Of course with all that planning, nothing happened the first night :(

On the 18th I enjoyed a morning of movies and just hanging out with Dan.  We never have the TV on during the day...I felt like a rebel.  We decided to do a little shopping and go out for lunch so I could walk around.  I had felt stronger "contractions" throughout the morning and then during lunch I had a couple stronger contractions which had Dan saying, "We are going home!"  Since we were planing for our first home birth, I agreed.  No one wants a baby out in public.
2 hours before meeting Isaiah

Once home, I had a nap and felt a few more conractions throughout the afternoon, still not sure if these were the "real" ones.  I actually googled people's opinions on contractions because these were not what I remembered from the girls but they felt strong.  I was surprised to read more people experiencing the same feelings.  I now started to see that perhaps I was in labour.

By 5:00 pm I decided maybe I should time them to see if there was a pattern.  Well sure enough they were about 10 minutes apart and lasting for about a minute or longer.  Hmm maybe these are real.  So I did the true test and took a bath.  No change! Dan, who by now was getting a little anxious said, "I think we should call the midwives." Not being one to disturb others for no reason I said, "No not yet, I just want to be sure."  I can get a little too focussed on just moving things along which I think worries my husband.  About 10 minutes later I had one that took my breath away and told him we could call the midwife!

Both midwives arrived just after 7:00 pm.  Normally just one comes first, but they expected a quick labour due to my history. Unfortunately when they checked me, I was only 3 cm and still only having contractions about every 10 minutes.  In my head I was thinking....I did call them too early.

Determined not to be in labour long, I just kept walking around.  Meanwhile, the midwives were discussing with Dan about getting their equipment out of the car and making something to eat.  A moment or so later my water broke and the contractions came one on top of the other.  Plans changed. I barely had time get out of my wet clothes and make it to the bathroom.  Contractions lasted about 30 minutes and they were bearable.  Finally it was time to push!  Dan was right there and was able to "catch" him!  He was so honoured to be able to take our son. By 8:15 we were holding our Isaiah!
 

His name is one we had picked out around 4 months.  I really feel the meaning of a name has a bearing on the child and so I won't consider a name until I know what it means.  I had also been praying about choosing the right name.  I wanted a name that represented God being the centre/reason of your life but didn't know if there was a name to go with it.  One day Dan came home and inquired of the name Isaiah.  I like it a lot, but naturally wanted to know its meaning.  Wasn't I blown away when I found out Isaiah means; YAHWEH (GOD) is Salvation!  We never considered another name again.

We have really been enjoying having a little boy.  The girls are smitten with him.  They are constantly asking to hold him, walk around with him and smoother him with kisses.  He is a blessed little boy with such caring big sister.  My heart is full.



Monday, February 15, 2016

Homemade DIY Dishwasher Detergent

We were recently blessed with a new dishwasher.  We actually have not even had one here for the past 2.5 half years we have lived in this home.  However, it is a welcome addition especially with our baby coming very soon.   I had been buying environmentally friendly dishwasher detergent but have been introduced to the idea of making my own.  With a bit of research, I combined a few elements of recipes I liked and came up with this one.  It has turned out so well.  The dishes are shiny and clean without a film.

*I will have you note that we do have a water softener on our well and I am using straight white vinegar as a rinsing agent.

Ingredients (makes enough for about 64 loads)
  • 4.5 cups of water, divided
  • 1 cup WASHING soda (this is NOT baking soda)
  • 1/3 cup borax
  • 3 tablespoons liquid castile soap
  • 10 drops essential oil (I used lime) **
  • 1 lime juiced

Directions:
  1. Bring 2.5 cups of water to a boil. 
  2. Remove from heat and stir in washing soda, borax and liquid castile soap until dissolved.
  3. Stir in remaining 2 cups water, lime juice and the essential oil and allow to cool.
  4. Pour cooled dishwasher soap into a container of your choice. 
  5. It will thicken to a gel in the next 24 hours.
  6. Use approximately 1 tablespoon per dishwasher load.

*I figured this recipe costs about $2.50 to make which is less than what I would pay in the grocery store, especially for a more environmentally friendly detergent.

**I believe the essential oil helps with the cleaning but perhaps it can be left out, let me know if you try it without.  Otherwise I would use an essential oil with good cleaning properties.  A few I would recommend are: lemon, lime, orange  or tea tree.


Sunday, January 24, 2016

Post #3 Baby Update

Here I am with just over three weeks left!  I have been doing well, although starting to feel the effects of the pregnancy.  This past week, I had a few rough days with very little energy and breath left.  It is amazing how much a baby can suck out of you.  I am usually full of energy and have found myself just needing to sit down.  I definitely am struggling with what I would like to get done and with what I can actually get done.
37.5 weeks

I am just waiting on some blood work to see my iron levels.  If they are too low we will not be given the option of a home birth which will be disappointing.  Our two girls were hospital births with the midwives but we were hoping to try to stay home this time.  I guess we leave it on God's hands and pray only for a safe delivery.  Thankfully our baby is doing well.  He continually reminds me of his presence and I am anxious to meet him.  He is measuring on track and giving me lots of Braxton Hicks ;)

So what is left to be done around here,...well a nursery for one!  Here it is right now!

Yup it is still Dan's office.  Although here is Dan busy working on his new office in the basement.

What a handsome man!

He assures me that we can set up the nursery next week even if he has to temporarily use the spare room for work.  I really can't complain, he works hard and well a baby doesn't really use a nursery for awhile.  I just need to remind my nesting/organized self to just relax a little.    
In the meantime I have created some diaper cream, sewed a wet diaper bag and organized some clothes.  I am enjoying the change from all the pink and welcoming these blues, reds, greys and browns.

In the meantime, here is our current "baby" who doesn't look much like a puppy anymore but definitely still acts as one.  We read the Bible story the other day of Samson and laughed as it stated, "his wisdom did not match his muscle."  Well that pretty much sums up our dog.  He is mighty and stupid but I love him!  




Monday, January 04, 2016

Breakfast Cookies (Dairy, Egg, Gluten, Grain and Refined Sugar Free)

I love protein for breakfast and sometimes actually get tired of drinking a protein shake.  These cookies are a great alternative.  They are hearty and give you lots of energy for the day.  Filled with protein, iron, fibre and omegas they will give you the boost you need to get going.
Ingredients
  • 3 tablespoons ground flax 
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1/3 cup melted coconut oil
  • 1/3 cup honey or maple syrup if vegan
  • 1 teaspoon gluten free vanilla
  • 3/4 cup pumpkin seeds ground up
  • 1/4 cup cocoa
  • 1 1/2 tablespoon psyllium husk
  • 1 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
  • 2 tablespoons coconut flour
  • 1/3 cup hemp hearts
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt

Directions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and prepare cookie sheet.
  2. In a small dish combine flax and water.  Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl combine all ingredients then add the flax/water.
  4. Stir until fully combined.
  5. Scoop onto baking sheet.
  6. Bake 20-25 minutes until cookies appear set.
  7. Let cookies rest on the cookie set for 2 minutes then transfer onto a wire rack.
  8. Store in an airtight container in the fridge.