Dec 20, 2013

Favourite Thing Friday... Crackers

So every Friday I'm going to post one of my favourite things.  Food, make up, book, anything really.    These will be thing's that I eat, wear, read, use.  Thing's that I have purchased myself, with my own money, no sponsorship or donations from companies at all.  I just want to share with others some great finds.  I often buy food or an item on a recommendation from a friend so thought I would do the same for my blogging friends and followers.

So my favourite item this week.....

DeliGrains Brown Rice Crisps.  We love the Black Sesame one, there is a Multigrain one too.

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These crackers are great as a snack, to have with dip.  They are oven baked and best of all, they are gluten-free!

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They are a family favourite in my house.  My son loves them, he has then as a snack and in his school lunch box.  They are lovely and crisp and taste delicious.

We get ours from a local health food store, but I have seen them at a local supermarket too.

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Dec 19, 2013

I Had Gluten

I have been gluten-free now for 3 and a half weeks.  Aside from the initial withdrawal, which seems to have settled down now I have been feeling great.

I do still have some stomach upsets, but very mild.  My naturopath has said that after three months of being gluten-free, if I still have some symptoms I should remove all grains from my diet for three months.

Problem was, yesterday I had some gluten and oh dear it was horrible.  I ordered a club sandwich from a restaurant.  I asked for gluten-free and they said they would use gluten free bread and that their mayonnaise was gluten free.  It had chicken in it, which they poach themselves so know it's gluten free.  I can tell you now, that that sandwich was NOT gluten free.

It's quite amazing how after just three weeks of being 100% without gluten that having it suddenly, by accident can affect my body so much.  I had the most agonising stomach pains,  I was very nauseous, but worst of all was the bloating, gas and visits to the toilet.  This went on for hours.  The gas and bloating for the rest of the day.  Actually today it's still not completely better, but it has settled down a lot.

After the withdrawal symptoms I experienced and now the affect of having gluten, it's clear that I do have a problem with it and will be steering clear of it completely in the future.

Dec 15, 2013

Tuna Dip

I made the yummiest dip this afternoon, best thing is, it's Gluten-Free.

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Tuna Dip.

It had a packet of Light Cream Cheese
A Shallot
A Clove of Garlic
2 tins of Tuna Slices in Spring Water (but you could use any light tuna).
Mayonnaise (about 2 tablespoons).

I put it all in the Thermomix.  First I put in the Garlic, Parsley and Shallot (I used the whole shallot).  After that was crushed I added the cream cheese and mayonnaise and blended that.  I then added the drained tins of tuna and blended that.

Served it with gluten-free rice crackers.  It was delicious!

Dec 13, 2013

Chocolate Chip Cookies


These are sort of chocolate chip cookies.  Actually I call them "Shoe Box Biscuits" They are my grandmothers recipe and she used to make them for me when I was a child and would send them to me in a shoebox, always in a shoe box.  Kind of strange, I was wondering the other day if she actually used that as an excuse to go and buy a new pair of shoes, so she had a box to send some cookies to me, LOL.

This is such an easy recipe.  Takes hardly any time to whip up and they are so tasty and a little chewy.

So this is what I use  to make them...
1 x 225g bag of Shredded Coconut, (I try to buy from the health food store)
2 x 250g bags of Nestle Choc Bits - Dark Chocolate (not sure if they have Nestle Choc Bits in other countries, in Australia they are in the baking/cooking chocolate section at the supermarket, not the confectionery section and they are gluten free),
1 x 395g can of Nestle Sweetened Condensed Milk
1 teaspoon of Baking Powder.


You just put the coconut and baking powder in a bowl, combine well.  Add the dark chocolate bits and stir again to combine.  Then add the can of condensed milk and mix it through well making sure all of the coconut is covered with condensed milk (I often find a little hidden patch of dry coconut in the middle of the bowl at the bottom).  Spoon about dessert spoon sized balls onto a baking tray and bake at 180 degrees Celsius for about 15 minutes.  Keep an eye on them as they burn easily.


So simple, so yummy, it is almost impossible to stop at just one (unless you don't like coconut of course, then you really won't like these at all, LOL).  

Dec 12, 2013

Change Direction Of A Blog?

I'm unsure of what to do.

I am still the Dieting Diva, I'm still on my journey to a healthy life, but I'm wanting to change direction of my blog, sort of, change it so it's just not about dieting, I don't feel as though I am "dieting" any more, I feel that it's a lifestyle change, I'm now living a gluten free life too.  I've been wanting to move over to Wordpress also.

I need some advise from my followers....
Will you follow me over to Wordpress and my new direction?
Should I just stay here and carry on as usual and start a new blog on my new direction (so maintain two blogs, this sounds too hard).
Should I keep this blog and just change the direction of this blog, even change the name?  Monnie Diaries?

What should I do?  I would love some advise from experienced bloggers.  Even though I've had my blog for a while, I still feel like an inexperience blogger and am not sure of the best way to go.  So I thought I would ask those who follow my journey and see how you all feel to help me decide.

Dec 11, 2013

Braces Allergy? Could It Be?

This is probably going to sound crazy.... but I think my son may have been allergic to his braces and still have some sort of the effects lingering.

My son got his braces on in July last year (2012), he was 12 (almost 13) at the time.  He went through puberty quite early, his voice had already deepened and he was "getting hairy" lol.   I was just looking at photos last night of him in the waiting room and then after he had the braces on.  His big smiles, perfect skin, completely clear skin.  He had never had a pimple.   Within a week of having his braces on, he was covered in pimples, within a month he had severe acne.  It's something that was really hard for me to see as I know it had to bother him.  We tried everything, you name it, we tried it (except Pro-Active).

Within a couple of months he started to have very inflamed gums and I mean really really inflamed.  I was actually horrified when I saw them and thought he was not looking after his teeth and gums.  Turned out he was, he was using the flossing thing, special little brushes to clean all around the braces and between his teeth.   He had antibiotics, he has this special pink goop that they gave him at the orthodontist, nothing worked.  After 8 months the gums were so swollen that they had reached the braces and in some areas were almost going around the wires.  I had been asking them if it's possible to have an allergy to the metal.  They looked at me as if I was an alien.

From the very beginning I suspected that his braces caused his acne, it was just too much of a coincidence for it to be completely clear and within a week have full blown acne and with his swollen, very swollen gums, it was something that played on my mind a lot.  Fortunately in May this year 2013, he had them off.  He only needed them for just under 10 months.  I didn't really tell anyone of my suspicions as it sounds a bit loopy, someone being allergic to braces, braces causing acne.  I thought that the acne was just his bodies reaction to the metal, wether it was trying to eliminate it and it was coming out of his skin? If it was coming out there as that was the closest area to the offending, invading metal?  I really don't know, but it was just a feeling I had (still have).

When he went to have them removed, they were horrified at the state of his gums and fitted him with this plastic guard for him to wear.  Within 24 his gums had reduced by about half.  Within 48 hours, that plastic guard no longer fit!  His gum had gone back to normal!  It was the braces that made his gums become so inflamed.   I still firmly believed that the metal had been going through his system also and was the cause of his acne.  Sadly this has not gone away.

So this afternoon I spoke to my naturopath about it.  She thinks that it's absolutely possible that he still has some of the metal in his system.  So we are going to try and eliminate some of it (or all of it).  I've been hoping that the gluten-free diet will help with his skin.  I took him off dairy about 8 months ago and it didn't make any difference.  I know, it may just be his hormones, those raging teenage hormones, but I just have a gut feeling.  Mother's intuition maybe.

Has any one else had a child react to their braces?  Anyone every heard of a braces allergy?  I will keep you all posted on how it goes, the Glutathione and the gluten-free diet.  I really hope it helps as it's really hard for me not being able to help him.

PS...  His teeth look spectacular, my son is thrilled with the result.

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Here is the before and after (after his gum swelling had gone down)

Dec 9, 2013

So Difficult Sometimes...

I find having a child with Aspergers to be so difficult at times, particularly when that child is a young teenager.

My son is so quiet, so shy and so very antisocial.  I have been trying to get him to contact some of his friends for them to come over to hang out.  It's an impossible task! It's something that I find very frustrating as he get's so angry.  For some reason he think's it's weird to call someone, to text someone, to contact them on facebook or any other social interaction forum.   He just will not do it.

We are on Summer vacation at the moment and he will happily go for over two months with out catching up with any friends.  If I organise it, he will go, it's not that he doesn't want to hang out with other kids, he just won't organise it.

We have just had a big fight, with him walking off and me having to chase he around the house because I want him to think of someone to invite to come out with us in a few days.  We are going with other friends whose kids are taking their friends, so he needs to take a friend.

After about an hour of storming off, extreme irritability, he gave me a name and I text the mother.  Sadly the boy can't come as he has a prior commitment but wants to go another time over the holiday and catch up for a game of golf.  So I have now text another friend to see if her son would like to come (the boys have been friends since they were very young but don't see each other much any more as they are at different schools) and I'm yet to hear back from her.

It's a tough time of year, his other close friend is away on vacation for the whole summer holidays.  So many are away at this time of year.

I just find it so upsetting that he is so anti social.  I'm doing every thing I can but it just doesn't get any better.  I really hope that this get's a little easier for him to process once we have been on the gluten-free diet for a while.  I have read that being gluten-free does help with aspergers, but not sure how.  Guess I will have to wait and see.

Thanks for listening.

Dec 8, 2013

Gluten Free - Day Five

Today was the hardest day so far.  Not really that I wasn't having gluten, that wasn't a problem, but what seems to be withdrawal.

 I went out for brunch with a friend and had a delicious omelette.  Egg white with one egg yolk, spinach, feta, mushroom and shallots.   It was absolutely delicious, mouth watering delicious.

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I wasn't a big change, it's the omelette that I have all the time from this restaurant, what was the change was not having the two giant pieces of sour dough bread with butter and vegemite!

 Aside from doing a bit of laundry, I really did not do much for the rest of the day.  I have been feeling so light headed and goodness, my legs and arms are aching!  I feel like I've been for a 10 mile walk or have been doing squats and weights at the gym.  That kind of muscle sore.  But I didn't do anything the day before to cause it (other than clean the house, which I do all the time and have never felt like this).  So I'm putting it down to gluten withdrawal.

 One thing that I have noticed, is the very irritated patch of psoraisis that I have had for about 4 months and over the week after starting a gluten free lifestyle has not virtually gone!   I know where it was, I find that my psoraisis spots leave a little mark where they were, but if someone saw my stomach, they would not know were it had been.  That is just mind blowing!  This irritated, sore, itchy patch of skin that has been annoying me for months, suddenly gone!  Poof!
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