Tag: Gluten Free

Second Day of Birthday!

Hey Everyone!

Today, was my second day of Birthday.

Since I found out about the Gluten Free & Vegan bakery in town, four years ago to the day now, it has become tradition to go to the bakery to get cupcakes (instead of Birthday cake) to bring home and then next door to the tea shop for treats and tea. This year we kept up with that tradition.

This years cupcakes that I chose were German Chocolate, Chocolate peppermint mocha, pumpkin spice and cranberry gingerbread. For tea I got a pumpkin spice chai latte with coconut milk, and a pear ginger crumb cake.

This morning I had finished up the pair of socks I had been working on, and now that I am home from treats and tea, I started a new pair of socks 🧦.

Today I haven’t been feeling the best, so other than going for treats and tea, I have been at home where I can lay low and stay warm. I am trying to kick this bug as soon as possible.

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A Couple Days off

Hey Everyone!

Work didn’t schedule me for today or tomorrow, so I am able to enjoy a few days off and be ready to dive into a full week next week.

Yesterday I spent the afternoon knitting and watching Hulu.

Today I slept in, then got ready to head out. I stopped at Freddie’s and Black Rock Coffee before running by work to check the schedule for next week. On the way home I stopped by Cooper Mountain Nature park, to take some pictures. While I love hiking, I didn’t want to put that much strain on my knee that I banged up pretty good a couple days ago.

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Since I got home, I have been baking some gluten free and dairy free brownies while I waited for my KnitPicks package to arrive.

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In my KnitPicks package, I got the yarn swift I ordered as well as a hank of the KnitPicks stroll fingering yarn. I really didn’t need to order more yarn, but it was a choice of buying a hank of yarn and qualify for free shipping or just order the swift and be a penny shy of getting free shipping so I would have had to pay for shipping. The choice was get more yarn or pay for shipping. Yarn won.

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I have been enjoying relaxing since I got home from work yesterday morning.

Enjoying the City 

Hey Everyone! 

It is early Saturday morning as I am writing this post. Yesterday (Friday) which ended only about 15 minutes ago for me was a productive day. 

I finished up the pair of socks I was knitting. I knit this particular pair using KnitPicks Palette Yarn in the colors Victorian and Hazelnut. Beings I knit up pairs of socks entirely of these two colors and had some yarn left over, I have been working in combining the left overs of the colors I have already used and making socks from the left over Yarn. 

Yesterday, my mom and I had also gone to my favorite bakery for treats. My favorite bakery is the only gluten free vegan bakery in the city. There are other bakeries in town that do either gluten free or vegan, but Back to Eden is the only one that does both. I hadn’t been in to the bakery for a few months, and since the last time I went in, they have acquired the space that used to be next door, took down a wall, and expanded and done some redecorating. The space that was the original (as I know it to be) is still where you enter the bakery, but now that they have expanded, they have way more space for seating and moving around. I love what they have done with the space. In the old / pre expansion when it got busy, which it would be at times, you would constantly be literally bumping into the other customers and there would be no place to sit. There is now plenty of seating and plenty of room to look at what they have available and order. It’s also like and airy, and definitely a fun place with great food. I know I will miss being so close when ever I am able to move away from the city. 

At the bakery, I had a cardamom vanilla bean cupcake and a triple berry smoothie. It was very delicious. 

After my mom and I had treats at the bakery, we stopped at Fred Meyer to pick up a few items. Fred Meyer has their autumn decorations out. While I love decorating for Christmas, I love decorating for autumn more. Autumn is my favorite season. It is cooling off, yet October can have some of the most beautiful days, with the leaves turning yet it can be sunny and be between 68 – 72 degrees (Fahrenheit) 🍁🍂 and perfect. Itis still warm enough to go out without a jacket on those days, yet isn’t so warm that I am too hot. 

Learning to live a simpler lifestyle

Hey Everyone!

Lately I have been rather overwhelmed with the constant bombardment of the media and our society propagating the mentality that we need the latest & greatest / biggest & best / needing more all of the time. 

I have noticed it more so living here in the city. 

I’m not saying that having a few nice  / quality things is bad, especially if you work hard to obtain them, and intend for them to last as long as possible. 

I know, since having been back in the city especially it has been a struggle for me, and that I have fallen into the trap of wanting more and new things when what I have works just fine. 

In the last few months, I have really been feeling that living in the city, where the fast paced, “give me what I want, and give it to me now” lifestyle is the norm. 

I miss having to drive more than ten miles to the nearest craft store, and the closest “normal” mall was an hour and half away, where I didn’t do much clothes shopping and wore what I have in my closet. 

I would much rather spend my time tending a garden or canning fresh picked local fruit, or cooking or baking or sitting on the porch or around the campfire working on my knitting, or reading a good book, and falling asleep at the end of the day after having worked hard that day. 

I have definitely noticed lately, that I have a hard time sleeping lately because I am not tired enough. 

I am really trying to learn from history, particularly the pioneers & early settlers of this area as well as from those who lived through the depression. Where you lived more off the land and worked hard for what you have, and when something breaks you fix it. Being able to make what you need, is a skill that has been lost. Being a city girl, it seems like most of the young women I grew up with (who also grew up in the city) really don’t know how to cook and bake from scratch, and are not inclined to. Their version of cooking & baking is opening a box and minimal steps, or better yet having someone else do it for them. 

As I get older, the more I want to live a life that is more about living life to the fullest, the experiences one can having, and doing for myself rather than relying on others to provide it for me (self-sufficiency). I have come to realize that I want to live somewhere with crappy to no cell service, and not have a cell phone, have basic internet (so I can still blog, watch the occasional YouTube video, be able to access email, be able to order Yarn and Perfectly Posh when I need to, as well as my dairy free & gluten free staples), a land line phone and maybe basic cable, to get the local news stations. I would love to garden, growing as much of my own fruits and vegetables as I can, and buying from local sources what is not feasible to grow on the small scale, but want to get to can or make jam/jelly then freeze/can. 

I am already so blessed to have what I have, and know how to do what I know how to do. 

While I am still looking for a pair of hiking boots that fit better than the pair I have, I don’t need 10 pairs of original toms plus numerous pairs of vans. I don’t need a ton of dress shoes. If I have the opportunity to live where I want to live, I could use a pair of good winter boots, a pair of wellies, a good fitting pair of hiking books, and I would be set until the shoes I have wear out. 

If I have the chance to live where I want to live, some work clothes that can get dirty, and can handle wear and tear would be a must, but for now I am set with normal clothes. 

Modern Homesteading

Hey Everyone!

Over the past several years, I have been becoming more and more interested in Modern homesteading. While I am not one who whats to go completely off grid, I definitely want to get out of the city, and have at least some property, if not a full on farm.

There is a part of me that wants to live some place else, deep down, this part of the country is home, and I know what grows well here, and pretty much everything I want to grow myself or purchase from local farm stands or farm stores/cooperatives can be grown in the Pacific Northwest.

I also want to do a lot more canning/preserving and have plenty of home canned pickles, pears, peaches, applesauce, elderberry jam and syrup, black currant jam, as well as making my own strawberry, raspberry, blackberry and huckleberry freezer jam. There is so much more I also want to preserve, I just haven’t thought of it at the moment. I have the Ball complete book of home preserving, and it is full of many different things I want to at least try doing.

I also want to grow a lot of my own produce, as well as having chickens (for eggs and meat), maybe a few pigs (again for meat), and a couple goats (for “pets” and vegetation management).

I am also interested in using solar power. I know I would have to use some of the regular “on grid” electricity, especially in the winter, but in the summer I hope to use very little if any “on grid” electricity.

I am very much an outdoorsy, work with my hands, live a simpler, more old fashioned way of life kind of person. I can only handle watching so many youtube videos, movies and tv shows, before my brain and body are screaming for me to go outside, and do something.

Over the years of dealing with food intolerances has really been the biggest push toward my desire to live a more natural life. Looking at labels and reading ingredients has been a huge factor in my desire to grow and raise as much of my own food as possible, and what I can’t grow or raise myself, acquire from local farms and orchards. I am also all about cooking and baking from scratch and being a DIY’er. This is why I had created my Simple Homemaking blog and youtube channel. I wanted to document my journey of moving toward living a more natural lifestyle, and living a more natural lifestyle, and sharing it with others who are living a similar lifestyle or who are curious to see what it is all about.

I also do a lot of knitting, and that also ties in with how people used to live, and the DIY lifestyle. I love making winter accessories for myself and others.

In college my favorite subject quickly became American History, more specifically History of the American West and Gender Issues (which was my school’s version of Women’s History). I could relate to a lot of it, since I grew up on the west coast, and my family has lived west of the Mississippi River for several generations. I have ancestors who came out west on the Oregon Trail, one set of my great grandparents lived on at least one homestead if not more than one. So this part of the country, it’s history and way of live is in my blood and a huge part of who I am. It is also a part of history that is quickly being forgotten and lost, as generations don’t see it as relevant and just don’t care. There is a part of me that wants to preserve that history, culture and way of life. I still want to keep some of my modern conveniences like Electricity, modern kitchen appliances, indoor plumbing, and a washer and dryer. I do want to live more off the land and teach the younger generations about how the generations before us lived.

Life is Returning to Normal

Hey Everyone!

As much fun as it was to have my Aunt and Uncle visit from Canada, they had to head back up north yesterday morning. On their way back home, they were stopping by my oldest cousin’s house, for a few days. My oldest cousin lives in Alberta.

Today was definitely more relaxing. I did do a little bit of baking; I made gluten free, dairy free pumpkin muffins, which are really good. I love pumpkin flavored stuff.

I have also spent time today working on the current pair of socks I am knitting up. The socks I am working on, I am using the very first skein of yarn I had purchased with the intent to use to make socks with. In the years since I had purchased this yarn, I have definitely learned about what types of yarn work well for socks, and what “Sock Yarn” is really a huge pain in the rear to try to knit up into socks. The yarn I am currently working with isn’t the worst yarn I have worked with to make socks, but so far it is my second least favorite yarn to use for knitting up socks. Now that I have knit up a few pairs of socks, and have tried a few different kinds of yarns, I am figuring out what works, and what doesn’t work.

What I am supposed to be doing career wise, and with my life in general has been on my mind a lot lately.

I know I want to live in a small town somewhere here in the West, primarily in more northern climates that aren’t too different than what I am used to where I am. I know I want stay in the mountain west, North of the 44th latitude Parallel, and no further east than the front range of the rockies. Though living in Alaska, Oregon, Washington or northern/western Idaho is preferable. This part of the country is home for me, and it’s in my blood. I want to be able to live somewhere where I can have a garden at least, and maybe some fruit trees and a few chickens, and eventually maybe some goats as well. This part of the country is one of the best growing regions (in my opinion) for local produce, like Peaches, Pears, Apples, Cherries, Cucumbers (to make pickles) as well as Strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, huckleberries, blueberries. I would love to be able to grow my own strawberries, raspberries, apples, lettuce, spinach, some herbs, carrots, rhubarb, and so much more.

I definitely want to do more in the way of homemaking and doing things like making jams & jellies, canning fruit, canning pickles, knitting, living a more natural lifestyle, and doing more of the things that women used to do back in the late 1940’s and 1950’s.

While knitting has definitely made a comeback in the past couple of decades, there was about two or three decades when it almost died out. Out here, where I am from, yarn stores are prevalent. I don’t know about other parts of the country, but at least out here, knitting and crocheting won’t be dying out any time soon.

Over the course of my teenage years, and now into my early adult years, it has amazed me, at how many young women my age don’t know how to really cook from scratch, let alone do some basic baking and canning – something my grandmother’s generation for sure learned how to do. I did learn how to cook and bake from scratch, which has definitely served me well since I developed food intolerances.

Being able to preserve, and share a part of our history is important to me. I am glad I wasn’t my age now, back in the early 1950’s, and that I can be my age, now, in the 21st century, but there are a lot of things about my grandparents generation, aka “The Greatest Generation” or “The G.I. Generation”, that were children and young adults during the great depression, and were young adults during the second world war. Many of whom, who were born toward the end of the generation were the “housewives” of the 1950’s and 1960’s (Like my grandmother’s).

 

 

A Simple Day in the City

Hey Everyone! 

Today was kind of a lazy Saturday. I got to sleep in, which was nice. I still feel like I am trying to catch up on sleep. 

I spent a lot of my day knitting. I also got one of my last KnitPicks packages (for the time being) in the mail today. I was super excited when it showed up, as it was the package with the two pattern books I had ordered in it. I had ordered the Highland Knits book and the Little Luxuries Collection book. The little luxuries book is the collection of the patterns shown in the latest KnitPicks catalog. The Highland Knits book is full of patterns based on the knit wear Claire wears throughout much of the first season of Outlander. 

My mom had wanted to go do something this afternoon, after she got back from the grocery, so we went to my favorite bakery, which makes amazing gluten free vegan baked goods. They had a lemon lavender poppyseed mini cake, so we got that to split, then stopped at new seasons on the way home, to pick up some coconut milk coffee flavored ice cream bars. 

Life Update

Hey Everyone!

I haven’t really talked about what I was doing for work on this blog, mostly because I didn’t really want to talk about it, and really didn’t feel that it was appropriate at the time to talk about what I was doing. From mid – November 2014 until recently I had been working for one of the local phone/internet companies as a contractor, where my title was Engineering Assistant. I was hired to help with a big project that they had going and needed help with. Now that it is wrapping up, they didn’t need as much help with it, so I am now looking for a new job.

This job had given me about 2.33 years of work experience at the same job, which is a huge deal for anyone my position, who graduated from college during the recession who had also struggled to get work experience. Each of the jobs I have held have been learning experiences, in who I am, and what I am supposed to be doing career wise with my life. While I don’t see myself having a career as an engineer or with the phone company, I don’t regret having taken this job, nor do I see it as a mistake or a bad career move. Like I previously stated, it gave me more than two years of work experience at the same job, It also gave me an income during that time, during which I was able to make some progress in paying off my student debt. It also allowed me to work on growing my personal library. I have purchased plenty of books during the past two years. It also allowed me to buy yarn, in which I have and will be able to knit up into some amazing items. It also allowed me to pay for some weekend adventures, which have been a blast.

In the course of the adventures I have been on, and being able to really get out and see more of the city I live it, and experience it, I have learned a lot about who I am and the direction my life is going in. I love this part of the country. This is my home.

I have had the opportunity to go on more hikes, and spend more time at the beach, and that has been amazing. I love hiking, it is one of those things that I will keep doing for as long as I am able to.

Over the past couple months I have been stocking up on Sock Yarn, so I can knit myself socks that are sturdier, warmer, and of a better quality than store bought socks for Hiking socks. I am all about doing as much DIY stuff as possible, and I love making hand knit goods for myself that are not only pretty, but also functional and useful to my lifestyle. I definitely love being outdoors, exploring the are around me.

My love of History, especially that of Women’s roles, and what women did throughout history, has been a passion of mine that has been thriving. Between knitting, and learning more about homemaking, cooking & baking healthy dairy free, gluten free, egg free food.

This winter was hard, normally I love winter, and I love the rainy, grey days. This winter I have been in a funk, largely due to stress. Now that we have had a few nice, semi warm (like 58 – 60 degrees Fahrenheit) and at least partly sunny, so that has helped me get out of the funk. I am doing fine now, with some sleep and a nice day.

Today, I have been working on a pair of socks I am working on, I also got a load of laundry done, as well as relaxing which is really important right now. Burn Out and negative stress are not healthy, and I am working to get back to a good place when it comes to the stress thing. I also got my resume updated, so come Monday, I can hit the ground running to find a new job as quickly as possible.