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Life of A Feeser

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Celiac

You Are Not Your Illness.

Six or more months have gone by without me writing. It’s one of those things where family, ministry and self needed to come first. They did…and now I am back. With the absence from my blog, I have learned some things about myself that I never wanted to be in the light. I have mourned for things I thought I was over and I have fought a battle that I realized couldn’t be won with my own strength or my husbands, but The Lord’s.

It’s so frustrating when you realize that you have no control over “you”, that Jesus is going to do and teach you when He want’s to teach you that day; and that’s final. It’s frustrating when He’s always right. Right? Am I alone here? But that’s what I love about it all, that Jesus always puts me in places where I meet the people that I needed to meet. Maybe not at that time…but I will eventually realize He was showing me the right people to be around.

It all started 8 years ago. The joint pain, the fatigue, the grogginess. I was 17 almost 18 at the time. My parents and I were told it was growing pains… and if you know me, I was and always have been 5ft tall, ironic right? The next year we were told it was Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis, but was not told the specifics… just to treat it with Aleve and Tylenol and I’d be fine. Fast forward two years and my husband and I got married, had a family and here I am unable to get out of bed because I’m too exhausted from not sleeping and my bones feel like they are constantly grinding together. I feel like I’m 90 years old.

We went to countless Dr.’s being told I have Rheumatoid Arthritis, to Lupus to having both at the same time. I wasn’t on any medication up to these diagnoses’, I was in chronic pain for years before they THOUGHT this is what I had. I held a normal 20 year old life with a full time job, full time work while being a wife and pregnant. Don’t get me wrong there were days when I wanted to give up. I wasn’t going to let it win. I wanted to be normal.

After Jason and I had our last child, we decided to get some real answers. Some definite answers. Not a maybe’s and “we think’s” any more. There were months where we were at the Dr.’s office 4 or 5 times a week with both kids. I was tired of it. I was tired of lying on the couch watching my kids play. I was tired of giving up the gym because everything hurt. I was tired of being tired. And we needed help. I needed help. We went the Mayo Clinic in Scottsdale, Arizona. We had a diagnostic team look and determine my problems. And FINALLY, after 8 years, we were told what was wrong.. It wasn’t lupus, its wasn’t RA, it was Fibromyalgia.

Good thing about this is that it is not life threatening like Lupus, but there also aren’t magical pills to make it go away either. There isn’t a cure; there isn’t a pain med for Fibro. You just have it and that’s that.

There had to be more; there had to be something that I could do for myself to feel normal. I was tired of being a zombie that was in pain all the time. But what I learned is that it’s a lifestyle change. It’s about being “okay” and trusting the Lord with it. Maybe this was it. Maybe I was supposed to be like Paul the Apostle; he asked for healing for years and Jesus never healed him. That was His will. Maybe this WAS it. Little did I know, help was on its way!

Remember when I said Jesus has you meet people for a reason? It was that moment I knew this was a God thing. When we were living in California, we went to a church down in Riverside that we dearly loved. We met tons of new faces weekly and loved connecting with them. It was then that I met a Pastor’s wife and we talked a little here and there; when we moved back to Phoenix I never would have thought that she’d introduce me to something that would have changed my life for the better. Something that helped her find relief from Osteoarthritis in her spine that she no longer has anymore. Something that was all natural, and only has positive side affects.

One word: PLEXUS

I took all of her advise, I ordered, I took all of it for two months straight. Little by little I felt less and less pain. I felt more energized! My depression was slowly decreasing. My anxiety wasn’t spiked. The first month I had a WHOLE WEEK where I had ZERO pain. I thought it was a cruel joke. There was no way. It felt weird to dress myself, to be ale to run with my kids around the house. It was weird to feel free. Pain was supposed to be my normal. But now it’s very few and far between. I still have bad days don’t get me wrong. But it’s not my everyday anymore. I have ME back.

If you are reading this and struggle with an autoimmune disorder and have questions, please don’t hesitate to ask. I would LOVE to share more and help you on your journey to feeling better as well.

XOXO

This year, I’m thankful for Pie

Thanksgiving was so different for us this year. For the first time in 3 years we didn’t have to drive 5 hours back home away from family! This year it was maybe 30 minutes. And instead of “see you next month” it was, “see you tomorrow.” We are so so beyond thankful for that!

So, with Thanksgiving there’s family, then turkey, and my favorite…PIE. Due to my dietary restrictions I can hardly eat pies found at the store. And if I do find one they cost so much money! So this year I decided to make my own. I Pintrest surfed for hours until I found two really great recipes and decided to combine them; one because I have way too much coconut four than I know what to do with, and two why not?

The pie crust I found from The Coconut Mama. It’s by far the easiest pie crust I’ve ever made.  As you will see it says 8-10 minutes in the oven. 10 minutes was perfect for me. 1st time I made with coconut oil, 2nd time I made it with grass fed butter and I think it tasted so much better(I made it in cupcake tins the second time! Mini personal pies! So cute!).

The apple filling and Dutch topping I found from Deliciously Organic. I used lactose free milk and butter again. For the topping I didn’t use anything besides almond flour and 6 TBS of butter.  I put it in the oven for 10 minutes to brown. When I filled the pie up with the filling and topping I placed in the oven for 5 minutes to just get warm again and ate that pie up like there was no tomorrow.

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Have fun with this recipe! I know I had a blast making this with my mom on Turkey Day! I also vow to never buy a pie from the store again. It was seriously that good. Now go make one, or five.

http://thecoconutmama.com/2014/11/coconut-flour-pie-crust/

http://deliciouslyorganic.net/apple-pie-grain-free-paleo-gluten-free/

3 ingredient Paleo pancakes

With it being so muggy and rainy out here in Phoenix I felt like making some pancakes for breakfast this morning. I haven’t had pancakes for about a month. We had them almost every day for vacation and they were wonderful…not grain free but still so delish. So as I was rummaging through my pantry I saw my large bag of Coconut flour and off went an idea. It had to be simple. I like simple, and came up with this! I hope you enjoy them as much as we did. My son kept asking for “more”, so that’s saying something! 

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the best GF pancake mix If you aren’t ready to take the Paleo leap 🙂 (Sprouts and Wholefoods has this as well) http://www.amazon.com/Namaste-Foods-Gluten-Pancake-21-Ounce/dp/B000LKZA36/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1407955155&sr=8-1&keywords=namaste+pancake

The easiest Paleo pancakes you’ll ever make. Seriously, and they are toddler approved.

What you’ll need:

  • 2 TBS Organic Coconut flour
  • 1 TSP cinnamon
  • 4 Eggs
  • Coconut oil for greasing the pan

Method:

  • Wisk (or I use my mixer) and mix until smooth texture.
  • Warm up your pan with some of your oil
  • Spoon out 2 TBS of batter ( or however big you’d like the cakes) and wait for the sides to become rounded enough to flip. I had my pan at about a medium heat and it took me about a minute in total for each cake.
  • And serve!

It makes about 8 toddler sized pancakes. I haven’t tried making adult sized ones yet 😉 you can get creative and add mashed banana in the batter, strawberries or even the famous blueberry pancakes. Use your favorite butter, ours is Earth Balance, and you have lovely fast pancakes that are actually good for you. And I mean, look how pretty they came out. 

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Happy baking!

It’s baking time. My favorite.

I’ve made this bread twice this week! The second loaf is almost out. Thanks to my almost 2 year old, who loves it for lunch with some peanut butter on top! MMMhmm!

I’ve played with many recipes but this one is by far my favorite, and so simple to make. It comes from my all-time favorite go-to book Against all Grain by Danielle Walker. Want to purchase the book? You can click here, get it fast and get your Paleo cooking on

 http://www.amazon.com/Against-All-Grain-Delectable-Recipes/dp/1936608367/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1407859105&sr=8-1&keywords=against+all+grain

From Danielle’s book this is usually made in our home more than I’d like to confess to. It’s just so good we can’t help ourselves. And the convenience of having all the ingredients on hand is perfect. If you have her book this recipe can be found on page 236.

Prep Time: 12 minutes   Cooking time: 40 minutes    Yield: 1 loaf or 12 muffins

You’ll need:

  • Coconut Oil for greasing the pan
  • 1 cup of shredded zucchini
  • 1 ½ cups of blanched almond flour
  • 2 TSP of cinnamon
  • ¾ TSP baking soda
  • ½ TSP sea salt
  • ½ TSP nutmeg
  • 3 eggs, beaten
  • ¼ cup of honey (I used a Buckwheat honey my MIL got for me locally in PA. DELISH!)
  • 1 ripe banana

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 350* F. lightly grease an 8 ½-by- 4 ½ inch loaf pan and place a piece of parchment paper on the bottom
  • Place shredded zucchini between 2 pieces of paper towels, squeezing lightly to release excess moisture. (I did this then over my cutting board laid it out evenly and let it sit until I was done mixing all my ingredients together. I found it helped a lot better than letting it sit in the paper towel, and the bread didn’t have to bake longer than the 40 minutes needed)
  • Place dry ingredients into a small bowl.
  • Place eggs, honey, and banana in the bowl of a stand mixer and beat on medium for one minute until frothy and combined. Then add zucchini and beat again to incorporate, about 15 seconds. ( I used my hand mixer on level 5 then when I added the zucchini I went up to about a 7 for 15 seconds)
  • With the mixer running, slowly add the dry ingredients until they have all been incorporated
  • Spoon with the batter into the prepared pan or a 12 cup muffin pan lined with paper cups, filling each cup 2/3 full
  • Bake loaf for 40 minutes, until the middle is set and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Bake muffins for 30-35 minutes.

Thanks to this book and it being so yummy it’s hard to say “no” to my husband and son when they ask for me to make it.

Like my dishes? You can order them here:

 http://www.qvc.com/Temp-tations-Floral-Lace-24-piece-Oven-to-Table-Set.product.K39348.html?sc=K39348-SRCH&cm_sp=VIEWPOSITION-_-5-_-K39348&catentryImage=http://images.qvc.com/is/image/k/48/k39348.001?$uslarge$

Happy Baking!

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Eat like a cave woman

I’ve been off gluten for 4 years, it was before the fads were in and all the hipsters were doing it. What made me go off of it was my health. At 19 I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis which is one of many autoimmune diseases, and was automatically put on an anti-inflammatory medication.  I remember walking out of the room with a prescription in my hand and my boyfriend (now amazingly awesome husband) sitting patiently waiting for me. My world had just been rocked. I went from being an outgoing teen to a 19 year old that could barely function and get out of bed because of pain. The meds that they put me on made me groggy and worse than the pain level of 30 on a scale level of 1-10. So I decided to take my health into my own hands with the help of family and the lovely internet.

One thing that I read was that gluten is an inflammatory in the body. I had nothing else to lose; I was already lactose intolerant so taking gluten away wasn’t as big of a deal as I thought. WRONG.

First off: what is gluten? Many people who go gluten free don’t even know what it is. So I’ll let Google explain: “Gluten is a general name for the proteins found in wheat (durum, emmer, spelt, farina, farro, KAMUT® khorasan wheat and einkorn), rye, barley and triticale. Gluten helps foods maintain their shape, acting as a glue that holds food together. Gluten can be found in many types of foods, even ones that would not be expected”  thanks http://celiac.org/

When you go off of gluten you really take into perspective how much food and or products that have gluten in it. Tooth paste, shampoo? I’m serious. Check your labels. I’ll admit I’m a label snob. And I’d rather eat in than go out.  I’ve taken to many peoples words for it and haven’t been able to move for days or your stomach hurts so bad that you can’t eat, or the dreaded migraine that would last for days.

So with that said I went off of gluten. I cleaned up my eating habits, it took me about 4- 5 months to start feeling a difference in pain but after that I went into remission for 2 years. Then babies happened, after each child my RA came back worse. (Almost 6 months PP with Emerson and I’m STILL recovering) After we had Emerson my body started attacking itself more. Because once you have an autoimmune disease you are more prone to developing another one without your knowledge. So it is important to regularly see your Dr for blood work even if you take it into your own hands or not.

ANYWAY that was a bunny trail; I could go on and on. After Emerson I started Paleo. My RA came back so bad that I couldn’t function. It took all my energy to just feed her and change her, not to mention having a 13 month old as well. And I had to do something.

Thankful for my loving husband with his support and encouragement and the wonderful Against All Grain book and blog by Danielle Walker; we’ve been Paleo for almost 3 months now. I can feel a difference in my joint pain, my grogginess, and my attitude toward recovery.  It also helps lose the baby weight as well! I will be posting both gluten free and Paleo recipes in this blog along with many other things.

I can’t wait to share all my recipes with you!

Check out Danielle Walker here: I know you’ll love it!

againstallgrain.com

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