Saturday, April 20, 2013

Sprout It Out

What a wonderful turn in the weather! It's days like these that suck me into staying in this town, it's just so damn gorgeous. And I am now completely addicted to sun-lit brisk runs down the empty docks, if I could do that every day, I'd stay forever. The overwhelming serenity of running through such pristine beauty is just incredible. But the fact of the matter is that in a very short while those docks will be packed full of tourists and more likely than not, the weather will be back to its rainy normalcy. Le sigh. Oh well, I'm taking what I can while I can and loving it up.

Our apartment, unfortunately, gets no direct sunlight. It's pretty horrible. Well, we do get a random beam refracted off of the lucky bastards' windows on the hill, but it's only like at 2pm every 9th Thursday. So basically NO sunlight. Hence not a lotta plants thriving up in our place. Except sprouts! They don't technically need sunlight. You could put them in some sun after the first several days, but it's not necessary.

I purchased this handy-dandy-as-fuck sprout tower a few birthdays ago for K. (So she could grow me some sprouts! Aren't I such a darling wife?) Recently I've taken it over and have been sprouting like a madwoman.
It's a pretty neat little set up. Each layer has a drainage spout so you pour the water in the top, it trickles through all the layers and then you discard the water at the bottom. Do that twice or so a day and in a few days you get to EAT THEM. That's my favorite part! In fact, I keep meaning to take a picture of them all packed in there and ready to be devoured...but I usually am too excited and devour half of them before I get the chance. So this is what you get instead.
Broccoli sprouts, day four
Bean Seed Mix, day two
I usually do a tray each of clover, broccoli, and a mix of adzuki, lentil, mung bean, and radish seeds. I keep meaning to stagger them so that I don't run out, but I love having the variety at the same time, so that never really works. In fact I need to finish off my last batch and start some trays today!

How do I eat them? Atop errything, that's how!

With edemame hummus and thin corn cakes (organic, from Australia, and delish!)
With Amy's Gluten Free, Vegan Mac N Cheese (and obligatory hot sauce)
In a giant bowl o' chopped veggies

With tomato soup

Atop a zucchini, leek, pesto pizza (with creepy looking but tasty tasting faux cheese)
Inside quick 'n easy hummus / avocado tacos

Everything's better with organic pico de gallo chips. Truth.

Sprout spring rolls? YES! (This is what I made to eat after B's today. Scrumptious!)

Make sure you wash your sprouts WELL before eating as they can contain bacteria that will not treat you right. I feel like they're the chicken of the plant world, I'm always super paranoid and wash the holy living shit out of mine.

That being said, sprouts are super good for you. Chock-a-block full o' protein, nutrients and deliciousness. Seriously, they're just plain goodness. Don't take my word for it, here are a few links with more sprout-tastic information!

So go get sprouting! It's a fairly low maintenance process and at the end of it you get to eat the product. Who wouldn't want to eat shit that they grew? Fuckle, I wish I could grow everything I ate! That would pretty much rule. Ahh, someday I shall farm, I fucking hope.

Below is our brunchness at B's Bistro today. I love that place, even if the only thing on the menu for me is French press coffee. Today there was a young child's birthday party going on and it was so adorable! And they've put drawing supplies on the tables. Love, love, love. K got to eat like a queen: lemon blueberry pancakes AND a lemon blueberry cupcake. Looked delish, I'm pretty sure it was!  

Happy sunshine-riffic, super Saturday! Enjoy the day, wherever it may take you!

Saturday, April 13, 2013

Why I Don't

What do I eat? It seems like I exclude so many things that there just isn't anything left. Oh, but there is! But first, I think it makes sense to start with a quick (or not so quick) rundown of what I don't eat...and why.


No animal meat or animal byproducts (to the extent that I am capable), this means all meat varieties including fish/seafood, dairy products, and eggs. Is there anything else I'm forgetting? Basically if you think it's meat, I don't eat it. 

I'm slightly on the fence about honey. I sort of see it as a byproduct of a necessary process. No bees to pollinate = no plants to eat = hungry, cranky me. So why not use it? The rub is that naturally, bees don't produce honey year round. They can actually hibernate for up to 11 months. So honey production is forcing the bees to produce in unnatural conditions and quantities. So for the most part I eschew honey as well.

All that being said, I do not fully subscribe to a vegan lifestyle. I say "vegan" to help people understand that I also don't want meat broth in addition to not wanting meat; I don't want eggs in addition to not wanting bacon. But to describe my diet, I prefer the term "plant based nutrition", because to me it's the nutrition part that is more important than the lifestyle. But how do I say that? I'm a plant based nutritionalist? I have no clue. Ideas? Send 'em my way. Anyway, I still have leather boots, make up with more than likely animal derived ingredients, animal bristled paint brushes, etc. I believe that it is much more wasteful to not use what I already have. The deed's been done, throwing it away and purchasing an animal free replacement won't undo anything, it would only mean the animal really did die for nothing. I do however attempt to purchase animal free replacements as I run out of whatever item.

So, why no animal/animal by-product consumption?

The number one reason is my health. Animal product consumption will. Kill. You. Yes, I know none of us will make it out of life alive, but damn it, I want to go out as healthy as possible. There are studies proving the link between casein (the milk protein that give cheese it's stringy goodness) consumption and cancer production in human cells. And those tests also prove that stopping casein consumption STOPS cancer production. It can literally turn on and off cancer. So why, knowing that, would I chose to turn it on? I just can't ignore information like that. But don't take my word for it, research it. If you haven't watched Forks Over Knives, start there. It is an incredibly eye opening documentary and contains life saving information that I think the general public just doesn't know. Because our government (being puppeteer-ed by the meat-dairy-monsanto-drug company monsters), doesn't want us to know. Fooducate yourselves because they're not telling you the healthy truth. You're worth  more to them sick than healthy.

Sustainability. Meat production is such a drain on our resources, it's really just ridiculous. Energy and land are wasted on feeding, raising, slaughtering, shipping, and producing animal products. Both of which we don't have in abundance to waste on an unnecessary industry. Then there is the environmental impact of the toxic waste created by the animals and animal processing. We're basically killing the planet while we kill ourselves. Great thinking, peeps, let's see how that turns out for us. I'd rather not.

I understand that there are still similar drains in producing plant based products, but it can't be ignored that the drain is greatly less. And that's something. I don't remember where I heard this, probably the internet, they can't put anything on the internet that isn't true ;) But a vegan who drives a Hummer creates less of a negative environmental impact compared to a meat eater driving a hybrid. Well it turns out that this isn't quite true. But meat consumption does account for more greenhouse gas production that all transportation, as in, planes, trains, and automobiles. Chew on that.

And of course, the animals. I was a vegan once before. I had just come from eating a low carb therefore high meat fad diet. I lost a bit of weight in a really unhealthy for me way. Who knows what my cholesterol levels were then! But anyway... I was on a road trip and two specific instances triggered my desire to not consume animals. While in California, we drove past a big truck carrying what I think were turkeys. It was night time and under the freeway lights I could see them. I could see them jam packed in crates with legs, wings poking out and feathers flying everywhere. It seemed like they were prisoners going to their execution. We also drove past CAFOs in Texas and other Midwestern states. CAFO stands for concentrated animal feeding operations; again, jam packing animals into a space that is more than likely inadequate for the amount of animals and produces great levels of pollution. To give an example, from the ol' Wiki: In 1966, it took one million farms to house 57 million pigs; by the year 2001, it only took 80,000 farms to house the same number of pigs. This is not a good thing, people. Those two things galvanized me into deciding that I was going to stop eating meat. But I thought I'd stick with consuming animal byproducts; eggs, cheese, yogurt, etc. Being a vegetarian sounded much easier and less crazy than being a vegan. 

But the animals that produce those byproducts versus those raised just for their meat, are not destined any better of a fate or demise, generally. Yes there are organic, ethical farms raising happy chickens that lay happy eggs. But do not fool yourselves, there are less of those than you think and that box that says "cage free" doesn't necessarily mean the freedom you hope it does. I am very empathetic, I can't help but immediately put myself in the painful reality of others. And that includes animals. I can't condone the unethical treatment of animals, I just can't. They feel, they suffer. Just because they can't verbally say so doesn't mean it isn't true. It's really just an asshole assumption that because we're at the top of the food chain, it's legit to make those below us suffer for our sake. Ri-dic. Ultimately, the general mistreatment of animals for byproduct production is as unconscionable as for meat production and that is what lead me to being a vegan.

Quick aside, I support those who chose to ethically hunt / raise / butcher their own meat products. IF you're going to do it, do it right. I do not support those whose hunts equate to a fast food drive-thru or store bought steak and eggs. Ya heard?

I became a vegan and ended up moving to the Midwest, not your typical vegan locale. Especially the part I ended up in. They had this dish, it had tater tots, a shit ton of processed cheese, and maybe a pig's worth of bacon. And probably some cream of meat soup, I don't know. It was like a heart attack wrapped in cancer. I was determined to stay a vegan in those surroundings and it wasn't until I moved back to Alaska that I stopped being a vegan. I somehow was able to push the truths I knew out of my head and went back to full on animal consumption. 

It wasn't until about two, three years ago when I started to get sick, that becoming a vegan again sounded like a good idea. I don't know what was or is wrong with me. When it started I was sick all the time. My stomach would feel upset after eating anything and I was usually nauseous in the really early mornings, like when I was supposed to be sleeping, damn it. It was horrible, I used all the sick days I had and ones I didn't. I went to the doctor and they of course, prescribed me useless drugs. Like stupid name brand shit for heartburn. I knew it wasn't heartburn, I've had heartburn and this was so much worse. It was like my entire insides were burning. Like I could feel pain in my organs that I shouldn't be able to notice even exist, if that makes any sense. Finally they did find what was wrong, at least partially. I had H. Pylori, which is a bacterium that is linked to ulcers and stomach cancer and which 50% of the world has, but 80% who have it are asymptomatic; which means I was one of the lucky few experiencing horrific pain from their habitation. Awesome. The cure of course, was as bad as the ailment. A super regimen of a  cocktail of antibiotics that had the same painful side effects as what I was already experiencing. But after it was done I did start to feel a bit better. But not completely.

They did test me to see if I had Celiac disease and the results were that I didn't. An awesome friend who happens to be a chiropractic doctor told me that I could still be gluten intolerant because there are different levels to test for and generally they don't test for all of them. I was willing to try anything to feel better so I decided to take the plunge and become...

Gluten free.

Dun, dun, duuuuun. It seems even crazier than being a vegan. Even to me. I don't understand how you could be allergic to wheat. How is it not a basic part of human nutrition? But it turns out that in our desire to have more delicious, rather than nutritious foods, we have altered wheat. And it is not the same gentle grain it once was. 

As I searched out gluten free information, many of the recipes were meat centered. It seemed, according to most gluten free recipes or products, that to replace wheat I would have to consume more meat and cheese. And while I was consuming them at that time, consuming more just seemed counterproductive to my quest for better health. So thoughts of becoming a vegan once again filled my brain...and it was only a matter of time before I completed my metamorphosis into my current, incredibly stereotypical persona: a vegan, gluten-free, lesbian. Seriously, I feel like a cliche. But you know what? I'm the motherfucking healthiest cliche walking. Because removing gluten from my diet was like a magic trick. I wasn't sick anymore. It was AMAZING. It was such a humungous relief to just feel better.

Unfortunately, it's not 100% better. I still feel sick sometimes and I'm not sure what it is. I've given up on doctors. One, because the pain generally isn't that bad. And two, because I've never had any faith in them anyway. They don't want to cure you, they want to prescribe you. So it's now the "What the fuck else could I be allergic to or intolerant of" game? Currently the consensus (that is, my wife says so, so I listen) is that I'm also allergic to potatoes. Talk about a sad, pathetic sap. No potatoes? Are you kidding me!? But yes, when I eat potatoes or even something with potato flour in it, I don't feel well. So the tubers were nixed as well as wheat. And that has gotten me as close to 100% awesome as possible.

And removing gluten and potatoes has greatly reduced my consumption of prepackaged, processed products and led to me making practically everything I eat. And that, along with no longer consuming all the negative crap in meat products, has led to me losing a shit ton of weight. Like ah lot. I went from about 210-220lbs at my heaviest to currently around 139-142lbs. Oh and for those of you who don't know me in teh real world, I'm short, like not even quite 5'4". I had NO business ever weighing that much. 
I didn't even have the excuse of having created life; this is my nephew and me at one of the higher weight points.
Yeaaah. No thanks. If ever I'm so frustrated by the difficulties of my expansively restrictive diet that I want to go back to being an omnivore, I think of this picture. I am a self centered human. I can force myself to forget about the animals, the environment, but I will not allow myself to forget what impact eating meat has on myself.
*No, NOT legally, thank you, fucking Alaska and the federal government for still viewing and treating us as second class citizens.
My giant weight loss also awesomely coincided with my wedding. Win fucking win. In the above picture I'm at about 144lbs and over the top excited to have just married* the love of all my lives, my soul mate.

So that about sums up what I don't eat and why. Tune in next time, kiddos, for what I do eat and how!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Spring Wake Up

It's officially spring according to the calendar. The weather is getting there, albeit slower than I'd prefer. Inside our tiny apartment it feels like summer. At least in our glasses, that is, because we finally got a juicer! And when better than a nice, long three day Seward's Day weekend to try it out?! Thank you, Mr. Seward for purchasing Alaska. I wasn't born here and I probably won't die here, but wherever I go, Alaska will forever be my home. But seeing as how my lovely state doesn't support my marrying my true love, we probably won't be calling Alaska home much longer. But enough of spring and politics, on to juice awesomeness!

Here's the juicer we decided on. It was a random deal on Amazon that I think is already gone. So sorry because the name brand versions of this retail for over $300. It's a slow speed, masticating juicer. The slow speed is supposed to be better for maintaining more of the nutrients in the juice by not heating up as much during the juicing process. I don't know how much of a difference this makes but sure, why not get the most out of the plants?
Our first attempt was celery, apple, orange, carrot, kale and mint. I love it, it tasted like the smell of summer, very green. K wasn't as enthused by it but she drank it down nonetheless. I was immediately drawn to the dry pulp leftovers and the possible uses for them. I used this recipe as a starting point for these crackers. For the spices I added coriander, cayenne, and organic no salt vegetable seasoning and a pinch of sea salt. The no salt seasoning is basically dehydrated veggies and super delish and available at Costco. Get some. I also added nutritional yeast to help bind and add a little tang.
I don't have a dehydrator, so I just set my oven as low as possible. I think I ended up leaving them in for about 5 hours and then I left them in overnight with the oven off. In the morning I had crisp-ish, super fibery crackers that tasted like tomato vegetable soup. Interesting and pretty tasty. The amount of celery fiber is a bit overwhelming, I would definitely reduce that next time.

For the next batch of juice I wanted to use the pulp for a sweet bread so I kept the ingredients to carrot, apple, orange and ginger and lemon. This juice was a big hit and I will definitely make this combo again. It's invigorating and just plain good.

As a gluten free, vegan, I don't get a lot of baked goodness in my life. It's truly sad. So I was determined to make myself something baked and sweet out of this juice pulp. I started with this recipe. I've used this recipe before and it works well with whatever you have on hand. The last bread I made was more savory sweet with black beans, squash and chipotle as the puree.

I used 1 1/4c of pulp as the puree and I added a smashed banana to add back some moisture. I used canned coconut milk because I had it on hand, although last time I used almond milk and that worked just as well. I only had brown sugar, so that's what I used. For the flours I had coconut and sweet rice. I also added 1t of cinnamon and about 1/2t of cloves. I ended up baking it for about 75 minutes. Then I decided that it needed frosting because damn it, I don't ever get frosting! Waaaay back on the top shelf of one of my cabinets is "normal baking staples" that I never use. One of which is a bag of confectioner's sugar. So I whisked together a healthy two cups of that plus about a 1/4c of the above carrot orange juice and 1t bourbon vanilla. I poured about half of it all over the top of the bread / cake and popped it back in the oven for about 10-15 more minutes. Thus creating a glazed doughnut crust that really just made the dessert incredible. Fucking incredible.

Some might say that it's not vegan due to the confectioner's sugar used and the possibility that bone char is used in filtering the sugar. I am more frugal than idealist and it was in my cabinet so I used it. And I realize that 100% vegan is unobtainable if you get too damn nitpicky. Do what you can, where you can and don't sweat the small stuff. For me it's vegan, for you it might not be, we'll both survive.

My next plan for the juicer is tomato kale juice with basil. And maybe another round of cracker experimentation with the resulting pulp. I'm also thinking about bumping up our Full Circle box to weekly delivery instead of our every other week current schedule. Or just more Costco runs :) Either way, the juicer now has a permanent home on our tiny counter and is going to get hopefully daily use.

And in non-juice news, I also chose this long weekend to quit smoking! Again! Guh. I've also recently broken my upwards of 4 cans a day diet coke habit. So if I can really (yes, I CAN) quit smoking I'll be down to almost no bad for me habits. And that's a great way to wake up to spring.

Friday, November 23, 2012


I'll start this off by saying I am very thankful, I have a wonderful life with my incredible wife. I am so lucky, my thanks will never end. But I just don't care about the Thanksgiving holiday. Even when I ate meat and wheat-tastic bread stuffs (I will always miss you, Stove Top) I wasn't big on the whole shebang. This year being gluten free, vegan and avoiding potatoes (talk about NO options!), I wasn't exactly counting down the days for the meat / wheat / spud fest. My stomach seems to like less and less food and I have had a really negative attitude about food in general lately. I really just wanted to not do anything, stay home, watch netflix and eat hummus and baby carrots like every other day and pretend Thanksgiving didn't exist. Luckily for me, K is truly incredible and made the day so superb! I was home sick (thanks db stomach!) on Monday and she convinced me to search for gf, vegan recipes for the holiday. I found some GREAT recipes and we got the goods to make everything. Then comes Thanksgiving morning and I did NOT want to cook. Again, lucky me, K came to my rescue and got my whiny ass back in the kitchen and got the grub made. And holy hell, it was SO good. So, so, so good. And the blog I found, Gluten Free Goddess has renewed my interest in food in general, giant thanks there! I am super excited to try more of her wonderful recipes.

The icing on top is that we brought all the dishes to our friend's house for a multi-family Thanksgiving feast and there were several people in the same boat I'm in. It felt great to be able to fill their plates with food they could eat. It's such a lonely, hungry holiday when you're the vegan/vegetarian/allergic to whatever person staring at a table full of assorted meats, bread, cheeses, and the only vegetables are probably swimming in more meat, cheese and bread. Being able to help others avoid that fate really made my Thanksgiving grinch heart grow several sizes! And the dishes all got rave reviews from the meat eaters as well. Win, win, win!

We made a few changes to the recipes but kept it as close as possible. I somehow never picked up molasses so we just used more maple syrup and some random corn syrup we had in the cupboard. I'd have rather not used the corn syrup but whatev's, it is what it is. And what it was, was DELICIOUS! I used butternut squash in place of the sweet potato and it worked great. The veggie loaf was great, just have to figure out some new name for it that sounds more appealing and befitting of its tastiness. The showstopper was the pumpkin pie with pepita pecan brittle. Oh. My. Goodness. Delicious. Back in the day, when I had my pick of pies pumpkin was rarely on my radar, pecan generally won out. Pumpkin was always so bland and boring. This recipe has made me a believer in the power of pumpkin! It almost got axed from the menu, the recipe was daunting and as mentioned above, I was not super stoked about cooking. Sweet, endlessly patient wife of mine is to thank for it getting made, without her encouragement and help it surely would not have. And it was actually a lot easier than I expected. The pecan coconut crust is very macaroon like and I want to make just it again but in cookie form. Maybe later during this lovely long weekend we get! Here are some shots of vegetable bounty and the links to the recipes. Enjoy!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

B Batteries Salad

We got our delicious box of veggie goodness yesterday. So I figured it was about time to use the beets from the prior box from two weeks ago. And I had a not-sure-how-old head of broccoli that was pleading to be used and basil from our new veg box. Enter B Batteries Salad, so named because I love alliterations and Demetri Martin is pretty rad as well. I don't have a specific beet salad recipe, I generally just make some sort of vinaigrette and hope it's delish. And generally, it is. This time, I measured and wrote down the process as I made it. So in hopes, it can be replicated...

And here is the rambling recipe:

B Batteries Salad

3-5 beets
1 head broccoli
10 basil leaves, chiffonaded

1/4c - 1/3c oil - I used safflower, but whatever floats your boat...
1/4c red wine vinegar
2T Dijon mustard
1T red miso paste
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/8c maple syrup
1/2t - 1t cracked black pepper
1/8t - 1/4t cayenne pepper
2T apple cider vinegar
1T lemon juice

Boil beets, I boiled mine whole and it took about 40 minutes on a low boil. While the beets are a boilin', everything else can be done.

Chop the broccoli into small florets with as little stem as possible. Or leave the stems on, no diff. I peeled the stalk of the broccoli and sliced it into rounds. Nice broccoli taste with a water chestnut like crunch. Plus the stalk is full of vitamins and damn it, I paid for those vitamins, I'm eating 'em! Broccoli florets and stalk rounds can then be parboiled for about two minutes or left raw. If you parboil them, be sure to shake as much as the excess water out of the florets as possible. I parboiled mine to better match the soft (slightly overcooked, shh) beets.

Combine oil and vinegar in mixing bowl, whisk in mustard and miso paste until emulsified. Add maple syrup, garlic, black pepper, cayenne pepper, apple cider vinegar and lemon juice and whisk until combined. Feel free to add the ingredients in small increments and taste test as you go. It is always a "little more of this, dash more of that, oh shit now I need to add that" kind of process for me. If you cut up the broccoli before making the vinaigrette you can use the broccoli florets for taste testing. Once you feel the vinaigrette is where you want it taste wise, mix in the chiffonaded basil and refrigerate.

Once the beets are done, after about 40 minutes, rinse them under cold water, peel the skin and remove any funky bits. Slice into thin quarter slices or dice. Combine beets, broccoli, broccoli rounds and vinaigrette in a large bowl. Or preferably a large food storage container with lid, since it's going in the fridge anyway. Mix until everything is nice and all up in each others' shit. Refrigerate and let the magic happen for however long you can wait or eat immediately. Top with more cracked pepper and cayenne pepper, if so desired.

Whew, alrighty! There ya be, my recipe! Take it, make it or leave it :) The dressing is a pretty generous amount and you could probably use only half or thee quarters and save the remainder for salad. Or use it all and sop it up with french bread....mmm...bread. Jeez I need to get on learning about baking some gluten free bread!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

All alone, all four of us...

We are finally getting settled in our new digs. I must say, as much as I've loved my roommates (some more than others, but whatev's), it is SO nice to live alone. With my amazing little family of K and the kitties. Just damn perfect. I am a lucky, lucky girl, that is for sure!

This is round two for me living in the Marine View, K's first time. I forgot the walls are constructed of solid concrete or I don't know, adamantium! Whatever they're made of makes it pretty impossible to hang pictures with nails. I have lots of pictures that require said nails in order to be hung. FML, what am I to do? How do I hang large framed pictures? I think our answer is to drill and just patch the shit before we leave. Or not hang them. Which is just a ridiculous non-option. Even if I had somewhere to store them (I don't, more on that below), I wouldn't want to not have them hung. And then what? Wait until we move out until we get to have them up? Eff that noise, they're going on the walls...somehow. We also had dreams of putting up lots of mirrors towards the back of the apartment to bring in the light from the few windows we have. We shall see about that as well.

Storage space, or lack there of. Holy crap the Palace spoiled us. Well we did pay a damn pretty penny to be spoiled by it! But the amount of built in storage space and extraneous storage closets / rooms to keep my arts / crafts / crap really was amazing. And obviously uncommon. Hello cookie cutter one bedroom apartment, where is your full wall of built in bookcases with mirrored doors? And we only have one built in mirror, in contrast to hell, 16!? mirrors at the Palace. So while K was on her mini trip to ANC to pick up the new rig, I wanted to try and unpack the rest of our totes that have been taking up all of our tiny space. And that's when I realized we didn't have enough storage. Oh I knew that was the case going into it, but that is when I really knew it. I would open a tote, rifle through it and look for stuff I could put away and not find anything. Okay, I put some stuff away, but the majority of it needs somewhere to be put. If I unpacked it, it would just be on the floor. And we don't have near enough square footage to do that. So I shoved all the un-unpackable totes in the corner, where we hope to put our dining table (with sweet wall mirrors surrounding it) someday and put the dining table semi decently (awkwardly) skewed next to the bookcases and behind our rando recliners. I arranged the recliners and side table to make our cot couch and coffee table space look much more living roomy. Looks pretty cute if you put on blinders for walking past the corner of totes and flotsam. But I digress, back to storage. I looked at freestanding shelves at Fred's, seems to be the best option. But even then, those will take up space. I'm tempted to keep our storage unit that we rented for the move. Maybe organize and keep the craft / art / crap that I actually think I will use in the next three months at the house and send the rest to storage. I don't know though, I like the idea of just living with wonky, crowded storage and keeping the $85 a month in my pocket.

In other, other news:
K flew to ANC and drove back our brand new '94 4Runner! She's cute, needs a name and possible a catalytic converter. Oy, don't get me started. I think the brief-but-felt-like-forever time apart was very good for us. K got some much needed time with friends she has been missing and I missed the shit out of her while she was gone and got in some fantastic Ver time, with a bonus karaoke appearance. Yikes!

Also while she was gone, I moonlighted at the knife shop for a weekend guest appearance. Mr. D had knee surgery and needed some help. I figured I was just going to be sitting around missing her anyway, so why not sell pointy things and make moola while being mopey. It was great, kind of funny how I was able to just slip back into the spiel. And cleaning the shop just cemented how much I LOVE having a state job. It's true, I fucking love being a state worker. I do my job (that I enjoy!), I get paid regularly, I get weekends and evenings off. I don't get calls at home, I don't work holidays and I have insurance. Yup, I'm sticking with it.

MC Lou is a plant uprooting demon. K brought back some African Violets and some kind of really cool looking plant that looks like aloe but the spikes are different. The aloe looking one is actually five or six little plants that have been replanted temporarily in one pot. So maybe that's why she had NO problem uprooting and removing ALL of them from the planter this morning while I was home sicky and sleeping. Then I cleaned it up and she did it again while I was out of the room. Really MC?! Ugh, it's a damn good thing she's fucking adorable.

Gluten free for me! This one will get its own post someday. After months of continued and unexplained sickness, I am taking the "go gluten free" advice of an incredibly smart and amazing lady who happens to be one of my best friends from forever ago (middle school) and is now a chiropractor. I was tested for Celiac Disorder by my doctor, yeah the same one who still doesn't know what's wrong with me, and didn't test positive for gluten intolerance. But then my above mentioned smart, amazing middle school bestie gave me the rundown. Basically she said the tests that they run don't test enough and that I very well could still be gluten intolerant and that most likely that's what is wrong with me. So I've been giving it a shot since the 16th or 17th. So far it is a little difficult but only because I haven't had the chance to stock my pantry properly. It feels very similar to being a vegan, reading labels and being hyper aware of what people offer you. Ugh, not that great, but if it makes me better then buh-buy delivery pizza and regular bread, hello not feeling like crap 23-6.

We have been mulling over wedding options. And bejesus it seems like the more we discuss it, the more new options we come up with to choose from. Which is making choosing just one very difficult! So I made a list of our top locations and pro's and con's, yes I am that nerd. Hopefully this will make one just stand out and we can forget the rest. I would like to have some stuff pinned down, even if it was just the colors or flowers or you know, the date! Little things like that :P It's getting closer and closer, whatever date it ends up being. I just saw that July 14 is a Saturday...I like the idea of a Bastille day wedding. I'm not a huge fan of combining holidays and weddings, like Christmas or Valentine's day, but Bastille is a French holiday, no one would know but us...and my mom. And she'd be proud and fucking love it :)