Motivation Monday [8/31/15]

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Sassy Snack Sunday

Today’s Sassy Snack is gluten free chocolate chip cookies:

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gf 2

gf 3

Brought to by Publix and Glutino.

Today’s rubic:

Flavor: How does the flavor compare to real, gluten free cookies?
Sweetness: Do they actually taste like dessert or are they just another cardboard tasting snack?
Softness: Are they soft, and chewy or hard and stale?
Sassiness: On a scale of one to Spock, how sassy are they?

Well I got to say I was a bit skeptical to buy these cookies. Usually when you make a snack gluten free, it takes all the taste and heavenly goodness out of it. I woke up in a bad mood today though, and thought what else do I have to lose? My day is already crappy, these cookies couldn’t possibly make it any worse.

When I pulled the first cookie out of the sleeve, I was expecting to taste a chocolate riddled piece of cardboard. I took my first bite. Boy was I wrong! This cookie was delicious! It tasted like a regular chocolate chip cookie. More than that actually. It tasted like a chocolate chip cookie sprinkled with unicorn tears. Not only did it not taste like cardboard, it was actually very sweet. I was also expecting it to look nothing like the package and only have about two chocolate chips. False! Glutino definitely delivered on the chocolate chips. There were so many chips in eat cookie that it brought tears to my eyes. I have a slight chocolate obsession and these cookies definitely filled that need.

Here  is how I rate these cookies according to my rubric:

Flavor: I would say they taste BETTER than regular chocolate chip cookies. Sorry Nabisco. They get a 10.
Sweetness: These were definitely really sweet. They were almost a little too sweet. Almost. 9.
Softness: They definitely weren’t soft and gooey like Keebler cookies, but hard like Nabisco cookies. That’s not a bad thing though. They weren’t stale tasting like some GF snacks I’ve had. I also didn’t brake any teeth trying to eat any because they weren’t too hard. I guess they were firm. Can you describe a cookie as firm? I guess now you can. 8.
Sassiness: On a scale of one to Spock (who in my opinion is pretty sassy), these cookies are a Captain Kirk (or a 9). I just watched Star Trek again this weekend. Hence my sassy scale.

Over all these cookies get a 36. I would definitely forever choose these cookies over gluten filled cookies. Mostly because I have to, but if I had a choice, these would be it. I really can’t taste a difference except that these test better. Well done, Glutino. Thanks for making taste-y GF treats.

Witchy Wednesday

Found some more witchy beauts at the thrift stores.

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Three beeswax candles. I’m trying to convert to only beeswax candles because they are better for you. They don’t release chemicals into the air. Instead, they purify the air.

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Also found this small glass pitcher that I want to use for Ritual offering oil.

Not too many Witchy find to share today. I’m trying to cut down on my Goodwill visits. I’ve been spending way too much monies there. I can’t help though, I love thrifting.

The Theory of Everything

A couple of days ago my sister and I rented two Redbox movies. We got Big Hero 6 and The Theory of Everything.

Big Hero 6 was a lot funnier than I thought it would be. Of course were also a lot of feels because it was a Disney movie. I found myself really relating to Baymax:

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The Theory of Everything was an amazing movie and actually very inspirational. If you don’t know what it’s about, it’s about the relationship of Stephen and Jane Hawking.

It also showed Stephen’s struggle with his disease and how he slowly lost control of his fine motor skills. He became wheelchair bound, he had a tracheotomy, and he needed someone take care of him 24/7. Through the whole process he never gave up and never lost his sense of humor. They had only given him 2 years to live, but he is still alive today at 72. He has written several books and won many awards.

This is such an inspiration especially lately. I’ve been having a lot of rough days with my Graves. Ever since I got those hives a couple of months ago, I’ve been feeling really crappy. Even though the hives are gone, I still have other symptoms show up. It’s one thing after another. I’ll admit, I have been throwing myself some pity parties lately. I’m not saying I’m not allowed to be in pain and have bad days, but I’ve been complaining about it a lot. Though I have this illness and feel sick and tired most days, I still have quite a bit to be thankful for. I’m in a couple of Graves’ Disease groups on Facebook and a lot of people in the group complain about the smallest things; though some of the people in there really do have it a lot worse. I try not to dwell on what the negative Nancys say and count my blessings.

Every time I have a complaint, I try to counter it with a blessing that others are not fortunate enough to count:

  • Even though I have a hard time getting out of bed every morning, I’m still alive to face another day.
  • Even I hurt all over when I walk and move slowly, I still have the ability to walk.
  • I often get headaches, but I still have my sight.
  • I’m always tired and have trouble sleeping at night, but I have a bed to “sleep” in and a roof over my head.

And the list goes on.

I still have my rough days, but I’m trying to complain about it less because I know other people have their own problems.

Every morning as I’m lying in bed trying to talk myself into getting up, I make sure to include my blessings. They are my fuel to get me through the day. If I just sit around having a pity party, I actually make myself feel worse and nothing gets done. When I stay positive, I feel better and stuff actually gets done, even if it’s a small simple task. It’s one more thing that wouldn’t have gotten down if I had been pitying myself.

Motivation Monday [8/24/15]

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Sassy Snack Sunday

In my venture to cut gluten, I’ve been discovering new foods that I can eat and saying good bye to ones that I can’t. Sometimes I’ll find my old favorites redone and gluten free.

I thought I’d share some of the delicious (and maybe not do delicious) gluten free snacks I come across.

Today I’ll be reviewing Kettle Brand Potato Chips. Flavor: Mable Bacon.

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I wanted some chips top go with my lunch today and found these. It was the flavor that intrigued me. Maple bacon. Sounds weird but also tastey.

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They have a Certified Gluten-Free label right on the front.

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In addition to no gluten, they are also MSG and preservatives free.

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All right now on to the taste test! Here is the rubric that I will judging the chips on:

On a scale of 1 to 10 for each category-

Flavor-Does it really taste like the flavor it claims to be?
Crunchiness- Are they super crunchy or do they taste stale?
Grease– Can I grease a pan with them or do they leave no trace?
Thickness– Do they fall apart as soon as you pick them up or are they unbreakable?
Sassiness-How sassy are they?

Here we go!

  1. Flavor-They mostly just taste like BBQ chips. There is a sweetness which is the maple, but I can’t really taste the bacon. This is disappointing because I was looking forward to eating bacon flavored chips. For flavor these Maple “Bacon” get a 5.
  2. Crunchiness-The level of crunch, however, is a lot higher. The crunch is so loud I can barely hear myself think. Which is a good thing if you like crunchy foods. Crunch level=9.
  3. Grease-There is grease on them, but it seems to be minimal. I was finding myself wiping my hands on my pants, but little residue was left behind. Grease level=3.
  4. Thickness-These chips are really thick, not like flimsy Lays that are thin and brittle. Thickness level=8.
  5. Sassiness-I don’t feel that these chips are that sassy. I think if I could taste the bacon, they’d be sassier, but they just taste like sweet BBQ chip. Sassy level=5.

Grand total=30.

Though the flavor is a bit misleading, I would still say these chips are still pretty delicious. I would definitely recommend them to fellow gluten-free eaters.

Witchy Wednesday

There are crows that like to hang out in the parking lot at work. A week ago, i found some nice feathers that they had left behind. I brought them home and cleaned/sanitized them:

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My dad also gave me a giant shell that was in his yard. He had gotten them from a friend.

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It’s perfect for my smudge stick:

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New Moon and the Not So Great Ritual

New Moon=New Beginnings

The new moon was this past Friday.  When I remember, I like to do a little something for the new moon. I worked late on Friday so I didn’t really work on my manifestations until Saturday. There was a new moon ritual in Orlando on Saturday night. I planned on going to it. It was the same place that held the Lughnasadh Ritual I attended. The rituals are always pot lock and last time I went I didn’t have time to make anything and just took Publix potato salad. This time I wanted to actually make something. I decided to make corn muffins because I thought they were gluten free (I checked, and they in fact are not, but I didn’t realize that until after I bought the mix). I also wanted to make the muffins snazzy. I came up with Lavender Honey Muffins. There are recipes out there for them, but I decided to just make my own.

First I had to go to the flea market to buy some local honey. I don’t like using that stuff from the grocery store.

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After wandering around the flea market for awhile, I finally found the honey guy. They are a family business. His dad started out and we passed away, the son and his wife took over.

After I got the honey, I stopped by my favorite witchy shop, The Muse, and bought some new stones.

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From front to back; Onyx, Goldstone, & Garnet.

Onyx: root chakra, assists with challenges in life, protection, & grounding.

Goldstone: calmness, emotional stability, energy generator, & deflects negative energy.

Garnet: regeneration, vitality, order, energizing.

Thought these would help with my new moon manifestation.

When I got home I started on a practice batch of lavender honey corn muffins.

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I used Jiffy mix because I had never made cornbread from scratch, plus ain’t nobody got time for that. The directions are on the back of the box. Pretty simple, just added an egg and 1/3 cup of almond milk. I also added 1/2 a tsp of crushed lavender and 2 tsp of honey. I used my mortar and pestle to crush the lavender, but you could also use the back of a spoon.

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Before I put the muffins in the oven, I thought I’d add some extra flare. Yeah bad idea. Turns out there is such a thing as too much lavender.
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They looked fancy though. Even the lavender inside was too much. Here’s the recipe I used for the ritual muffins:

2 boxes of mix
2 eggs
2/3 cup of almond milk (I’m lactose intolerant so you can use regular milk too)
1/2 tsp of lavender
4 tsp of honey

Baked the for ten minutes and they were golden. I didn’t get a chance to take a picture muffins because I was running late, but they tasted better than practice muffins.

I had an hour drive to get to the ritual. I kind of didn’t want to go because I hadn’t been feeling good and it was raining. I decided to go ahead and go because I wanted to be social and I figured maybe it wasn’t raining in Orlando.

It was. It was pouring on my drive over. I almost turned around, but I had already gotten closer to the ritual than home. When I got there, they wanted to have the ritual inside because it was still lightening. So there were a lot of people crammed into a small living room. There was incense burning and I quickly got a headache. I was trying to stay positive, but I was already in a bad mood. Then I got stuck sitting next to this kid that wouldn’t be quiet. When the ritual started, the lady putting it on stood in the same spot, which was right in front of my view of the altar so I couldn’t see anything she was doing. Plus it was hot and stuffy because they turned the fans off so they could light candles. After the ritual, it was the feast. It looked good, but I couldn’t eat most of it because of my gluten allergy. So I basically just had salad. After that, I was regrettably in a bad mood. I decide just to leave early.

When I got home, I hung out with my sister and watched YouTube videos. That put me in a better mood. After that I worked on my new moon manifestations.

I’m a visual person so I like to draw little manifestation cards:
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In the center is a sigil I made to take care of my body/health. I used the phrase: “I will make my body healthy”. On the left is the Ken rune which is the rune of the fierce warrior (among other things). I chose this one because part of getting my body healthy is getting my thyroid healthy. I’m already working on that by cutting gluten and taking my medications. I also want to cut sugar and processed foods all together. The symbol on the right is the Ogham – Druir which is the sign of the oak; pare and stability. The blue butterfly is the symbol for Graves disease. When I finished the card, I put it on the mini easel that I had put on my altar for Lughnasadh. I’ll have to post my Lughnasadh altar later. After I set my card on my altar I went to bed after a long day.

P.s. Sorry for all the blurry pictures, I took them on my phone.

What did you do for the new moon? What are some of goals you want to work on this month?

Motivation Monday [8/17/15]

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Four months

That’s right, it’s been 4 months since my last blog post. Oops. Life ended up getting really busy all at once. I ended up moving, starting my own salon (kind of), and having a bad Graves flare up. Things have started calming down so I thought I would catch up on my blog.

One of my goals this year was to blog more. I’m kind of sucking at that right now, but I do want to get better. You probably don’t believe me because I’ve said that in the past, so I guess I can just show you by doing. One of these days I may become a more consistent blogger. I’ve learned that planning my posts is a big part of that. I also don’t really have a blog niche yet. I’ve heard that’s important. I still haven’t found one so I’ve decided to blog about all the things until I find my niche. With that being said, here are some “themes” you can expect to find on this blog:

  • Paganism: I started studying Paganism last year. I don’t have a set path yet, so I will mostly be chronicling my journey to find a path. I’ve also been studying green witchcraft. Right now I’m identifying my path as Eclectic ChristoPagan. I was raised Christian (Mormon to be exact) and still keep a lot of Christian beliefs such as worshiping God and reading my scriptures.
  • Hair: I’m a professional hairstylist. I started booth renting back in April. I’m renting a suite so I will be posting the progress on my suite. I may throw in some hair tips and product reviews.
  • Graves disease: I was diagnosed with Graves disease back in 2012, but I still don’t know much about it. I thought it was something that you took medicine for for 2 years then went into remission. Boy was I wrong. This was mostly from my Endocrinologist. He hasn’t really talked to me about this disease so I don’t know much about it. Trust, I am looking for a new Endo as we speak.
  • Health: Because of my Graves, I’m having to change my lifestyle; what I eat, adding exercise (which I need anyway), and reducing stress levels. You will see me post updates on my diet, progress on my weight loss, ways I’ve found to reduce stress.
  • Green living: Part of my Graves is staying away from chemicals. This is mostly me just wanting to stay as healthy as possible. I will be trying to live a ‘Green” life by making my own natural beauty products. I will be posting about this journey as well.

So this is kind of what you will be seeing on my blog from now on. I’ve been having a lot of down time at work because it’s slow season so I hope to get some blog posts scheduled for next week.