Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Hope by Strangeling

I'm so buying this!!!

Now to get the dayum printer set up!! *glares at box*

She was created by Strangeling aka Jasmine Becket-Griffith! She partnered with Hamilton Collection for this very special, limited edition statue to benefit Breast Cancer Research.

I just happened by the site by accident tonight while link hopping. I'm so glad I did because I'd love to have it!

I recognized Strangeling's work at her site immediately because of 's userpic, which I love! This led me to look further at her site, and voila!!! Pay dirt!!

I hope I get to order it on time! This will only be offered for a short while and will not be available in any other form according to the site info.

If you'd like to purchase it, here's Strangeling's Order Form. I believe this is the only way you can order it. So if you like...go there now!!!

*prepares to tackle printer*

***p.s. I just tried to find it at the Hamilton Collection site, and it is not available there at this time...no mention of JBG. So, yup...this is the only way to purchase it!!

orginally posted at my lj

Sunday, May 04, 2008

Amy's Kitchen

I've found some wonderful blogs, sites, & recipes through some of my searches and following links and reviews at various places, starting usually with Go Dairy Free & their blog.

A wonderful resource for prepared no-dairy foods is a brand called Amy's. I believe the family business goes by Amy's Kitchen. You can see their food products in their Kitchen. I like the drop down menu for selections on allergies that provides a list of the major ones. You can select your allery, and it brings up a list of foods that accomodates that allergy. ssswweet!

Once I saw their site, I had to find where the products. I finally found them at a Clark's Food Market. There was quite a selection there, but, not all of it was vegan/no-dairy. I made 5 selections: Vegetable Pot Pie, Roasted Vegetable Pocket, Vegetable Pocket, Shepherd's Pie, & Roasted Vegetable Pizza.

Shepherd's Pie:

The filling was like a nice vegetable soup. Very tasty. I don't get to eat pot pies and such very much anymore, so it was a nice treat. The potato topper was ok. The mashed potatoes had a texture to them...which I've found is true in many frozen mashed potatoes. So that was not a turn off for me at all...was just nice to have mashed potatoes that I didn't have to make!

I would have liked my potatoes browned. So if I had a toaster oven, I would use it with this dish.

Vegetable Pie in a Pocket Sandwich:

Man...was it nice to have a pocket again! I love Hot Pockets!!
The filling was pretty good. Nice veggies...but I missed the meat. I love chicken and turkey pot pies/pockets. Hmmm...it's been a while since I ate that, but, I think their might have been bits of tofu, which I didn't mind. Not my fave thing in the world, but it'll do in a pinch...and someone actually knows how to cook it!! lol
Also, the dough was...umm...dense, maybe? Definitely not a Hot Pocket type of dough. It was a little more like pizza dough...which isn't a bad thing.

Lastly, a Roasted Vegetable Pie in a Pocket.
I know that it exist...because I ate the same day I had the Veggie pocket at work. However, I can't find it on the Products list.
...but I know that I ate!

O.O no....really! lol

Seriously, I remember biting into it thinking...this isn't what I bought! I thought it said Roast & Vegetable Pie in a Pocket...y'know with MEAT!!!

bah! So tricked me!

Anyway...wasn't too bad...I'm just not a big veggie eater. Also, when it comes to veggies...I like them to flavor my food, especially peppers, not necessarily eat them though! Like fajitas, I love the peppers and onions to flavor my chicken or steak...but I tend to leave the veggies on the plate!

Wha? o.O

*Ouch* Stop making like the V8 commercial!!
*rubs forehead*

Anyway, I haven't tried the other two items at they need to be put in the oven...and as I said...I'm not a kitchen person.
I'm learning.

Snacks for the Milk Allergy afflicted

Here are a couple of treats I found at Trader Joe's.

Trader Joe's Gluten Free Ginger Snaps:

These are crunchy little cookies with a nice kick of ginger in them!
You get 5 cookies per serving at 140 calories (50 calories fat).
Ingredients: Gluten free flour, sugar, canola oil, molasses, ginger, soy lecithin, eggs, baking soda, sea salt, natural flavors.

Allergy warning: made on equipment shared with milk, peanuts, & tree nuts.

I can eat these and do not seem to have a problem with them. I like to dunk them in my coffee!

My only problem is...I tried their Triple Ginger Snaps first. Big mistake!!! I liked them better...but they had some sort of milk product in them.

Now...I still buy them...for my aunite who loves them! So wrong!

Here's a review I found at Snack Lounge.

Next up...
Trader Joe's Soy Creamy Mini Chocolate Sandwiches
I have tried a soy vanilla ice cream before, but it was just ok. However, I was craving ice cream. When you haven't had it in so long...ya try ANYTHING! So I gave these a try...figured it would hit 2 cravings at once...ice cream and chocolate.

I have to say, I'm rather surprised! Not too bad. Didn't have a lot of after taste, was chocolatey...chocolate ice cream with a chocolate cookie.

According to Trader Joes, they are listed under their Vegan foods, which means: "Vegan
Products that are free of all animal products and /or by-products, including meat, poultry, fish, eggs, dairy, honey, gelatin, lanolin, confectioner’s glaze and carmine."

So there. I'm good....except I tend to eat 2 at a time.

Serving size is 1 sandwich at 90 calories (20 calories fat). I couldn't find the ingredient list because I threw away my one and only box. *shrugs* Found the calories at The Daily Plate. No reviews or pics there.

Ok...that's it for now.
Coming soon...Amy's Kitchen stuff

Adventures to a Milk-free world

I'm sure I've mentioned it somewhere before, whether here or at my LJ, that I'm allergic to milk....

No...NOT lactose intolerant.


There is a difference.

I can't take a pill and then eat the offending food that will make me sick otherwise. I still get sick! The effects of the offending milk proteins causes anything from GI symptoms to a full-flegded sinus infection...which has led to bronchitis on a couple of occasions. Last fall, it settled in my chest. I had respiratory problems due to the infection for which they had to give me an inhaler.

Thank God I've never had all out respiratory problems, or *horrors!* anaphalactic shock, due to digesting a milk protein...but the feeling of my sinuses, eyes, throat, tongue, or mouth swelling, itching, or tingling...yeah...not so nice!! O.O

*sigh* I must say...I love milk and milk products, but alas, they do not love me. I realized in my early twenties that I could no longer drink milk or eat ice cream...major GI probs there! ack!!

So, I gradually stopped using milk & ice cream. Although, sometimes I just broke down and had to have a bowl of my fave cereal or ice cream at the A&W!! ugh.
I used to work there as a teen...I even have my personalized mug I received from the boss to this day! What's a girl to do?

I continued to have problems with my sinuses throughout my twenties, and eventually asked my doctor in my lil' town-in-the-middle-of-nowhere, Wyoming to check me for allergies because I kept getting sinus infections and they seemed seasonal. She said I had only a mild allergy to Timothy Grass...wha?

So I continued on...thinkin' there were whacked...but hey, who am I to tell a doc they got it wrong??!!

Fast forward to a few years ago, now in my mid-thirties and living in California, I went to my MD again. After so many sinus problems, he sent me to an ENT and an Allergist...God bless him!!

Still...nothing on my radar but a mild allergy to some grass again...but the allergist checked some food allergies this time!!
Double Blessings to Dr. S!!!

MILK!!! ...and yes, I asked the same thing as you may have.

"What? You mean I'm lactose intolerant? Well, I kinda knew that...I don't drink milk or eat ice cream anymore...well, rarely..."

He explained to me the difference.....I have since been in mourning of cheese. *sniffle*

Honestly, I didn't believe him at first. He had me on that diet where I couldn't eat anything but for a few things...and lots of veggies, no bread...blah! But, I did feel better!

After the milk allergy diagnosis, I went back to eating all my foods but tried to cut out milk products. Daaayyum...but it's hard!! See, a year or two before this...I was diagnosed as a diabetic. I was using cottage cheese, cheeses, yogurt, etc, to help control my diet. *facepalm*

And...I LOVELOVELOVE cheese.

I had such a hard time cutting out cheese from my diet. I was still struggling 6 months after I found out about my allergy, and ended up really sick again...sinus infection, bronchitis, antibiotics, lots of missed work days...it was out of control. So, I realized I had to make a real effort to stop eating the cheeses. *deepdeep sigh*

Nowadays, my struggle is with eating out and reading all of the labels to the food I buy. Oh...and coffee creamers!! I love coffee, but I don't always have soy based cream around, so I use the powdered creamers...they have casein in them...even though they say they're "non-dairy"...they so aren't!!!

So I still have flare ups now and then...and I kick myself for it because I can usually pinpoint the cause. (don't ask me about the pumpkin pie filling) O.O And y'know, there seems to be a buildup effect to it as well...like small doses here and there, but too close together causes more severe reactions.

Oh...and worse...since I stopped taking in milk proteins...my reactions seem worse as well. It's like before there was always something in my body...so my body always had elevated inflammatory response, or something, going on. Now that milk proteins in my diet are to a minimum...if I do eat something...OMG!!!

I get soooo sick...and it's multiple reactions...GI right away, with inflammatory responses to my sinus, etc, to linger on afterwards!

GAH!!! That's just so wrong!

Ok...I'm now babbling, and ranting. So, I'm going to end with the fact that I'm still learning and trying to figure my way around foods that are healthier for me....like vegan and gluten-free foods seems to fall into my "no milk" lifestyle.

Except I eat meat, eggs, dislike most veggies, eat some breads...and...yeah.

Anyway...what started this whole post is that I'm planning to post some of the things I find to eat...bought or made. I'll be posting a couple of them later today hopefully...as for now...I need to get some sleep!

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Odd Hours to arrive on shelves soon!

I had to post this....because I ♥ Odd Thomas!!!

Only a handful of fictional characters are recognized by first name alone. Dean Koontz’s Odd Thomas is one of those rare literary heroes who have come alive in readers’ imaginations as he explores the greatest mysteries of this world and the next with his inimitable wit, heart, and quiet gallantry. Now Koontz follows Odd as he is irresistibly drawn onward to a destiny he cannot imagine and to undreamed of places where the perils he will face and the stakes for which he fights will eclipse all that he has known.

The legend began in the obscure little town of Pico Mundo. A fry cook named Odd was rumored to have the extraordinary ability to communicate with the dead. Through tragedy and triumph, exhilaration and heartbreak, word of Odd Thomas’s gifts filtered far beyond Pico Mundo, attracting unforgettable new friends—and enemies of implacable evil. With great gifts comes the responsibility to meet great challenges. But no mere human being was ever meant to face the darkness that now stalks the world—not even one as oddly special as Odd Thomas.

After grappling with the very essence of reality itself, after finding the veil that separates him from his soul mate, Stormy Llewellyn, tantalizingly thin yet impenetrable, Odd longed only to return to a life of quiet anonymity with his two otherworldly sidekicks—his dog Boo and a new companion, one of the few who might rival his old pal Elvis. But a true hero, however humble, must persevere. Haunted by dreams of an all-encompassing red tide, Odd is pulled inexorably to the sea, to a small California coastal town where nothing is as it seems. Now the forces arrayed against him have both official sanction and an infinitely more sinister authority…and in this dark night of the soul dawn will come only after the most shattering revelations of all.

Burnishing Dean Koontz’s stature as a master of suspense and one of our most innovative and gifted storytellers, Odd Hours illuminates a legacy of mystery and hope that will shine on long after the final page.
found at Random House, Inc.

So, anyone out read any of the Odd Thomas books?? Would love to hear your thoughts!

btw...Odd Hours will be released in hardback on 5.20.08