more random things i buy because of this blog. and b/c i miss sugar.

*that’s right people: no diary. no soy. just coconut sugary goodness. i can hardly wait till this weekend to try them both. i’m not letting myself open them today for fear that i will drink both in their entirety by the end of the day and end up with a killer stomach ache.

*i’m also still technically “off sugar” — i haven’t had any since thanksgiving.
*but i am cheating for holiday parties. (i had salted dairy free chocolate at a holiday party last weekend. chocolate tastes ridiculously amazing when you haven’t tasted it in a few months.)
*lucky me, i have two holiday parties this weekend. one i’m co-hosting and will be making these gluten/diary/soy free brownies.

*i tried the eggnog seltzer. it tastes shockingly like eggnog. i spiked it with rum and i had the perfect, light holiday drink.






random things i buy because of this blog

while shopping for thanksgiving the other week, i made three impulse buys. i was on my way to the baking aisle for peppercorns and the holiday display at the end of the seltzer section had these three beauties:

i’m a sucker for seltzer. i’m also very picky about it. i prefer Polar. mainly because i have fun memories of driving by the big polar bear that stands on top of the Polar plant just off route 290 in Worchester, MA. as kids, we would wave to it every time we passed it on the way to visit family in maine. (i still do this. the waving part.) when i went through detox this summer, lime seltzer was my every-day beverage of choice. vanilla-flavored seltzer was my dessert. literally. i drank it after meals when i had sugar cravings. i got sick of it pretty fast.

now that i’m in month 4 of the restore/detox diet, i’m having some new realizations. mainly: that i can no longer drink alcohol. one drink and i’m woozy. i had one martini at a party saturday night and work up with a killer headache. i’m not sure if it’s the limited diet, the light eating, or the lack of hydration. (probably all 3.)  C told me i make for a very cheap date these days. given how much i used to drink (at least a glass of wine every night of the week), i’m saving us quiet a bit of money now that i maybe have 1-2 drinks a week. to say the least, my body is glad i’ve given it up.

so, rather than sip wine while decorating the house this week, i’m going to be trying one of these holiday seltzers. i’m most excited about the candy cane. cinnamon has potential to be full of awesome. eggnog just sounds horribly scary. i’ll let you know what i find out.


it’s hard to tell people you can’t eat anything they make you, especially during the holidays. in years past, december would be filled with little boxes of cookies and candies and other holiday treats full of sugar and whey and gluten and soy and other lovely ingredients that are now on my enemy list for life. i’m going into my first holidays without any of my meaningful holiday treats i’ve loved baking and eating since i was a little girl in my mom’s kitchen, dipping homemade donuts into creamy glaze and anxiously waiting for them too cool so my 3 siblings and i could eat them all. i’ve written about my feelings around loosing foods that are meaningful to me and i’m expecting this holiday will be a mix of realizations, like: o right, i can’t that any more….

the good news is:
*it’s december 5th and i haven’t landed in the hospital in exactly 1 year. this is a serious cause for celebration.
*my family, especially my sister and brother, are bent on making me gluten, diary and soy free goodies for the holidays. my brother even made up his very own cookie recipe with pistachio flour. genius!
*i can now buy gluten free, dairy free donuts in the freezer section of my grocery store, if i ever miss them that much.
*i have truly sweet and amazing friends:

i came home last thursday to package full of spiced nuts, made by my childhood friend beth and shipped from kentucky. beth wanted to make me something but wasn’t sure what i could eat since i’m off sugar and most grains. she went with nuts and did her best to keep the sugars low. i’m not sure how to explain how giddy i was when i opened the box and there were 5 packages of the following: smoked paprika almonds, spiced pecans, candied macadamia nuts, vanilla roasted walnuts, and curried cashews. all made from scratch. she included all of the recipes so i could see what she used and make them for myself once i ate all of these.

sweetest, most thoughtful gift package ever for a gal with food drama and on detox. beth, you are awesome. xo!

recipes: curried cashews, vanilla roasted walnuts, candied macadamia nuts, smoked paprika almonds, paleo spiced pecans.
(butter was substituted for olive oil.)

fun facts with deficiencies

i had blood work done last week to check-in on any deficiencies that might be hanging out, which seems ludicrous given my diet, but you never know. over the last 2 years, i’ve gotten very used to needles and having blood drawn. however, i have not gotten used to techs-in-training. last tuesday, i walked into the back room of the clinic and felt the dread rise in my body: the girl getting ready to draw my blood was young, inexperienced, and wore an “in training” tag clipped to her white medical jacket. the nurse training her did not seem confident in this girls ability to get a needle into my vein without going through my arm, but she let her do it anyway. as a college professor, i’m all for student training in medical settings. my university has a medical school attached to my local hospital, so i’m surrounded by residents. however, when a nurse in training is about to push a sharp needle into my arm and the nurse keeps saying, “no, not that way, no try it from this angel, no apply pressure here” before she starts, my belief in apprenticeship learning and learning-by-doing fly out the window.

it wasn’t pleasant but i survived it.

i’ve been pretty deficient in a lot of things for the last few years, which hasn’t been surprising, given how much my body has refused to digest much of anything without drama since 2008. but i’m 11 months into a gluten-free, diary-free, soy-free life and i’ve been really hoping things were gonna look better this time around.

they did! my tests came back with close to “normal” levels in all areas except vitamin B, common for most people with Crohns, Celiac and other digestive issues.
dang vitamin B: always hating on me.

here are some fun-facts about having a vitamin B deficiency:
*being low in vitamin B2 and B6 can cause very greasy hair/scalp issues (check.)
*eating foods high in vitamin B16 (beans: check. meat, fish poultry: no check) can control sugar cravings. (hmmmm…)
*severe lack of vitamin B can lead to tingling in toes and hands (check.)

and the list goes on.
i’m adding one more pill to the pile: B complex.
next time i get blood work done, i’m hoping for a perfect score.