At the time of publication, all recipes were free of the allergens listed as being free of in the title (i.e. soy-free, milk-free, etc.), and all other information shared was accurate to the best of my knowledge.
Though I strive to update outdated information quickly and work diligently to make sure you have the most accurate information possible at all times, it is your duty to double check labels EVERY TIME to ensure that the ingredients you use are SAFE FOR YOU.
Your doctor or allergist should also be your first go-to for information on how to handle your medical needs. That being said, if you DO notice an error, please send me an email letting me know (tell me what page or recipe the error is on, what the error is, etc.), and I will correct the error ASAP.
Thank you so much!

Please Be Advised:
I make sure all of my recipes use foods that are free of the allergens they say they are free of. You will need to do the same. For help with this, please see the appropriate "Alternative Names" page for the allergen(s) you need the recipe free of.

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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Ending Round 2 of Testing Tomorrow and an Update

Me in all my sleep deprived glory just after they hooked me up to do the EEG, but just before they started it.

I'm sorry I didn't get an update posted sooner.  The EEG left me more exhausted than I had planned on (it took me about 2 days to get most of my energy back, and I'm still not 100%), and then we had a long, busy weekend.  Plus, I have no results at all yet, and don't think I will until July when I see the neurologist again.

Anyway, the EEG went well.  They did have some fun trying to attach some of the electrodes through my thick hair, but they did eventually get them all on and get them to stay put, so that was a plus! ;)  I was worried for a moment that they'd want to shave some of my hair off - not kidding!  So glad they didn't have to do that!

The first thing they did was the sleep portion.  I'm not 100% sure, but I think I went in and out of sleep during that time.  I'm hopeful that they got the information they needed there.

The next thing they did were the strobe lights which were interesting.  They made me feel a little weird (sometimes they gave me a headache and/or had a hypnotic effect, and I did have a weird facial twitch after one set), and they left me even more tired than what I was when I started off the test.  Overall, not too bad, though.  It will be interesting to see if those types of things were "normal" or not.

The last thing that I had to do was breathe in and out really fast to simulate hyperventilation.  That was crazy!  You get all tingly from it and a bit lightheaded.  I was glad when that was over. :)

It all took about an hour and a half, and when it was all done, I got some coffee!  Hurrah! :D  

It really wasn't all that terrible, but it is not something I wish to do again any time soon as the lack of sleep really made me more miserable than anything else (I ended up getting just under 3 1/2 hours of sleep before the test).

Tomorrow is my MRV.  I have to find out if it will be done with contrast yet or not (I'm praying not!), and I have no idea how long it will be, though I suspect an hour or so.

Please be praying that the MRV goes well, especially if there is contrast (I want them to get my oh-so-lovely veins the first time).  If there is something to see, I want them to see it.

Thanks so much for your thoughts and prayers at this time!  They mean the world!

I will post an update on Saturday on my Monthly Milestones post.  It probably won't be that much of an update as I don't expect answers for awhile yet, but I'll let you know what I know. :)

(This post was originally posted on my original site, Fibro, Fit and Fab!)

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Let The Testing Begin!

"God delights when we face the impossible, because it is then that He can do the incredible."- Julie Moore
Tomorrow morning I will have my EEG, and next week will be my MRV.  I must admit; I'm a bit nervous for some reason.  

Maybe it's because the thought of being hooked up to a bunch of wires and being sleep deprived (4 hours or less of sleep) doesn't thrill me.  

Maybe it's because next week's MRV may involve a poke in the arm, and I'm not the biggest fan of needles with my itty, bitty veins that like to hide sometimes.  

Maybe it's because I'm fully expecting them to say that things look "normal", and I'm not ready to hear that because it makes me feel crazy.  

Maybe it's because they may find something. 

I could come up with a million reasons, I'm sure, but I have to remind myself that God knows, and He delights in these seemingly impossible situations.

I have no idea what tomorrow holds, but He does.  This seems impossible - everything has come back "within normal", nothing looks obvious, and yet I have these symptoms that cover the entire map of crazy - but this is where God lives and thrives.

God delights when we face the impossible, because it is then that He can do the incredible.
No matter what, God will be there, and He wants to do something incredible.

That may not mean He will cure me, and that's ok.

"Incredible" has many forms, and I hope to manifest one of them.

Above all, I just want to be used by Him...
No matter what that means.  

I appreciate your thoughts and prayers at this time, and I will post an update when I can.  I don't think I'll have any information tomorrow yet, but I'll post sometime tomorrow or Friday most likely.

Thanks again for your thoughts and prayers! 

(This post was originally posted on my original site, Fibro, Fit and Fab!)

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Monthly Milestones 2016 {5}

Today is the fifth Monthly Milestones of 2016.  If you want to share a milestone post, just leave a comment below with a link to your milestone post, and I'll pop over and visit it and leave a comment, and hopefully some of my other readers will, too. :)  Normally, Monthly Milestones, where I will be giving you updates on how I am doing physically, mentally, etc., will go live on the first Saturday of every month, though sometimes I may be a day early or late depending on circumstances.

Here is how I am doing as of today:

Me as of today, May 7, 2016, at 233.5 lbs.  Yes, I know I am no wearing the exact same outfit as normal.  Somehow, I lost the pants I had been wearing in the Monthly Milestones 2016 pictures.  No idea where they are.  I guess it is capris for the rest of the year! :D

  1. My weight went up again!  I weigh myself every week, and this month has been up and down a *lot*, ending with a net gain of 3 and a half pounds.  I can contribute part of my weight gain to some water retention that I believe is a result of the baby Aspirin I take now, but I know that it is also due to food choices, lack of exercise, and a few other things.  I am starting on the "removing soy as much as possible" part of my plan today, and have been working on increasing my water intake.  I've also started getting more active as I'm able to, so we'll see how this goes.  I also, just this last week, increased my Levothyroxine dose to help with my Hashimoto's, so we'll see if that helps with the weight issue, too.  I do not like that I've gained 7 lbs. since February, and I'm going to put even more effort at working to get healthier.
  2. The weather has improved!  The end of April and now May are shaping up to be warm enough to be outside more.  I'm trying to get into walking a bit more daily, but it's been difficult.  I've had a few really rough weeks physically speaking with leg weakness and I even suffered an injury to my right knee due to it.  Though I still can't walk as long as I'd like, I can walk some, so I'll take what I can get. :)  Hopefully we can get some form of water exercise started up again soon, too.
  3. We're still plugging away with our new lifestyle choices, and making some new ones.  As I mentioned in an earlier post, I removed my green tea supplement, and that has gone successfully, and I actually have been feeling better, so that's a plus.  I am planning on cutting soy out as much as possible starting today, and then in 2 to 3 weeks, reducing my grain intake, and then I work on removing my multivitamin or replacing it with one that is soy-free.  It will not be easy, but I needs to be done!  Wish me luck!
  4. I have no further information on the cause of my health issues, and we are still dealing with other health issues in the family.  As I mentioned earlier, I've had some real physical trials lately.  This is the worst it's been, and this is the first time I've suffered an injury (stretched or torn meniscus in my right knee) due to it.  It has been very discouraging to say the least.  I am being scheduled for some more tests (you can read more about that here), but I have no idea when those will be done.  I will post an update when I know more. 

    We have had to make some other food changes, too, as my husband has been diagnosed with a sensitivity/intolerance to corn (we found out via way of a patch test that left him with basically a 3rd degree burn, which I would consider more than a "sensitivity", but it's not a histamine reaction, so it's not an "allergy", but I digress).  So, we have to avoid most corn products (he was told he could have corn syrup and like dextrose or maltodextrin, just not corn starch, cornmeal, corn cereal, or actually corn, but we avoid all types as much as possible anyway), and wheat/gluten, and now we're adding avoiding even more soy (which we try to do anyway).  The fun never ends! :D  Pray for us as we work on our dietary issues.  I'm hoping that these changes will not only help us feel better, but also help my physical issues.
  5. We appreciate your prayers as we make some important decisions as a family.  Due to my unknown health status among other reasons, we need to make some decisions about various things in the next few months.  We appreciate your prayers very much.  Our lifestyle is definitely in for some very big changes, and we are doing our best to prepare for that.  We believe we've already gotten some direction, but are still waiting on some things before we decide 100%, but there are definitely big changes in store for us.  It will be different, but good. :)  Thanks so much for all the support and prayers for us through this.  They mean the world!
  6. Blog updates have stalled, though posting has increased!  My system to add posts to this blog and Natural and Free at least once a month is still going well, and I have found the time to make some minor changes, and I do those when I can.  I'd like to do more than that, but my current health status is making that difficult, and I've finding that I am back to having a serious lack of time for now.  I'm hoping that will change when school is out in mid-June.  We'll see how it goes!  I may still be able to surprise you with some crazy awesome updates sooner than later. ;)  Stay tuned! :D

That's about it for now.  How are you doing?  Are you reaching your goals?  Have you tried something new?  Come up with a new recipe?  I hope all is going well with you, and I hope you will leave a comment sharing your thoughts and/or milestones (with a link to your post, if you wish).  As always, I wish you the best of luck in all you do, and hope you will return soon! :)

(This post was originally posted on my original site, Fibro, Fit and Fab!)

Friday, May 6, 2016

Fresh Fruit Salad (Soy, Wheat, Nut, Milk, Egg and Fish-Free)

Fresh Fruit Salad made with Jonathan apples, blueberries, canned pineapple, clementines, bananas, strawberries, and red seedless grapes and tossed with the lemon juice and water mixture

Happy Mother's Day Weekend!  
In honor of mothers, I decided to post a recipe that was both healthy and delicious - a fresh fruit salad!  It is also super easy to make, and impossible to mess up because you can literally put any kind of fruit you want into it.  That's my kind of recipe, and one moms everywhere will love, especially because it is soy (if you use all soy-free ingredients), wheat, nut, milk, egg and fish-free.  Winner, winner, chicken dinner!

Fresh Fruit Salad 
Mixture of 2:1 ratio water to lemon juice (optional - see instructions for more details)

Any amount of any fresh fruit you want such as:

grapes, any color 
(seedless recommended, but use your favorite kind, and you can chop these in half if you want, too)


(stems and leaves removed and cut into bite-sized pieces)

clementines, peeled and separated into segments

bananas, peeled and sliced into bite-sized pieces

your favorite type or types of apples, sliced into bite-sized 
(peeled if you wish, but it isn't necessary)

pineapple, skin removed and cut into bite sized pieces 
(you can use canned if it is canned in juice only, but it needs to be drained well

kiwi, peeled and sliced into bite-sized pieces

your favorite melon (watermelon, cantaloupe, muskmelon, etc.), rind removed and chopped into bite-sized pieces

raspberries, any color

fresh cherries, any type, pitted and stem removed
(you can cut them in half if you wish, too)

any other type of fruit you wish

  1. Put your lemon juice and water mixture, mixed according to the recommendations below, if you want to use it, in the bottom of your mixing bowl.
    • If making a large salad to feed a large crowd (think the amount you'd take to a potluck, so about 20+ people crowd-size), use 1 Tablespoon lemon juice and 2 Tablespoons water. 
    • If making a medium salad to feed a medium crowd (think the amount you'd make if you invited another family over for dinner, so about 10 people crowd-size), use 2 teaspoons lemon juice and 4 teaspoons water.  
    • If making a small salad to feed a small crowd (think the amount you'd make for just a few family, so about 5 people crowd-size), use 1 teaspoon lemon juice to 2 teaspoons water.  
    • If making a salad even larger or smaller than the sizes listed, just keep the ratio of lemon juice to water the same (2 parts water to every 1 part lemon juice), and you'll be good to go.  If you need help figuring out a good amount, just leave a comment below or send me an email, and I'll help you figure it out. :)
    (Note: This lemon juice and water mixture will keep the fruits that brown easily from browning like apples and bananas.  If you don't care if they brown, feel free to leave the lemon juice and water mixture out of the recipe.) 

  2.  Add all of the bite-sized pieces of fruit you are using to the bowl, mix well. 

That's all there is to it!  You can serve it immediately or refrigerate for later.  If you want to make it ahead of time, that works, but if you want to add ingredients to it like banana that tend to get mushy, wait to add them until right before serving for best taste and presentation.

Variations (Please keep your individual dietary needs in mind when making variations.):

  • Add-in options: If you want and you can have them, you can add shredded coconut, mini marshmallows, chocolate chips, any nuts and/or any seeds to the mix, too.  Whatever combination sounds good to you, feel free to do!  The sky's the limit!

YUM!  So easy, so colorful, so tasty, and so good for you!


What's your favorite fruit?

What's your favorite salad?

What's your favorite way to spend Mother's Day?

(This recipe was originally posted on my original site, Natural and Free.)