Friday, October 11, 2013

Do you see my concern, Smuckers???

Do you see the "may contain wheat and oats" statement? A brand called Purity with packaging marked 100% Natural and No Additives. Since Jenny Maids has been taken care of, I am moving on to a bigger fish. "Hello Smuckers, my name is Kara and I am slightly relentless."

Chris picked this bag of cornmeal up, while in a hurry. He didn't read the fine print as the packaging looked safe (a good reminder not to judge a book by its cover). I have already called and emailed Smuckers to let them know their branding of cornmeal and packaging is misleading to their consumers with dietary restrictions and serious medical conditions making them a brand I will not trust when preparing foods for my family and friends. I am requesting it be made clear on the front of the package, that as a result of possible cross-contamination, this brand is NOT pure and gluten-free as its name and package suggests.

As always, there is strength in numbers and if you feel my plight is worthy please forward your concern alongside mine. All the information (concern included) is below:

The brand Purity cornmeal and its packaging that says 100% Natural, No Additives is VERY misleading to your consumers (especially those with medical dietary restrictions) as there is a may contain wheat and oat statement in fine print on the back of the package. I want Smuckers to know that misleading packaging and branding like this makes Smuckers a brand I cannot trust when it comes to serving my family and friends. Would it please be made clear on the front of the package, that as a result of possible cross-contamination, this brand is NOT pure and gluten-free as its name and package suggests?

UPC Code: 5900003970

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Gluten-Free Play Dough

Tonight's adventures included catching up with a friend over making gluten free play dough. As my daughter constantly has her hands in her mouth, and fingernails are an easy trap, I have decided play dough is an issue for us. Recently I have come into contact with more and more people that are unaware of what Celiac Disease really is. For the record, it is chronic autoimmune disorder (not an immediate life-threatening allergy), you cannot "grow" out of it and just because someone is gluten-free does not mean they have Celiac Disease. The Canadian Celiac Association says "crumbs matter" so if it is a matter of a crumb, I care.

I used the "Easiest Gluten Free Play Dough Recipe." I found the dough too sticky at first (like most gluten free doughs) and ended up microwaving it to dry out the balls. For a first attempt, I think it turned out okay even if I wasn't patient enough to fully knead in the colour. We are set with two dough balls each for church, the Early Years Centre and home!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Good Food

We ordered a Good Food Box this month from the Hamilton Good Food Box program. $15 for $25 worth of farm fresh, mostly local fruit and veggies. You pay $15 at least a week in advance and pick up your produce on the third or fourth Wednesday of the month (depending on location). There is also a $10 "snack box" of fruits and veggies. The photo below shows what we received this month and I am eager to participate next month. This months veggie was cauliflower and came with a roaster cauliflower recipe I look forward to trying.

I pick up on Upper Ottawa which is only 10 minutes from my work. There is both a Hamilton and Niagara Falls program, but a gap for those who live in between the cities.

Here is the link to find a site near you for the Hamilton Region.

Saturday, September 7, 2013

Gluten Free Pierogies

I thought the pierogies were going to be a total flop because the dough was sticking. After hand forming each pocket, surprisingly, they turned out great and tasted ten times better than they looked. Like most gluten free foods, the pierogies were best fresh, and pan-fried in butter. I used this recipe:

Don't tell the part of our family with Polish background we eat them with ketchup instead of sour cream. Although I must say, despite the latter fact, after making pierogies myself, I feel I have embraced part of my heritage.

1 Samuel 12:20 Then Samuel said to the people, “Do not fear. You have done all this wickedness; yet do not turn aside from following the Lord, but serve the Lord with all your heart. 21 And do not turn aside; for then you would go after empty things which cannot profit or deliver, for they are nothing. 22 For the Lord will not forsake His people, for His great name’s sake, because it has pleased the Lord to make you His people. 23 Moreover, as for me, far be it from me that I should sin against the Lord in ceasing to pray for you; but I will teach you the good and the right way. 24 Only fear the Lord, and serve Him in truth with all your heart; for consider what great things He has done for you. 25 But if you still do wickedly, you shall be swept away, both you and your king.”

For Gramma Anna

Monday, August 19, 2013

Off the Hook

Today we went to a little fish-and-chips place in Stoney Creek that specializes in gluten-free, Off the Hook.

Prices are economical and the "Go go green pesto" sauce with Rylyn's and my Mahi Mahi was so delicious that for the first time ever, I did not douse my fish in vinegar!

I did not take a picture of my food...sorry...when you have toddlers in tow, feeding them their dinner is the priority. This was a great end to our day at African Lion Safari, which was also gluten-free friendly. While we did not order a meal at African Lion Safari, allergens were easily identified from their website and Rylyn loved her gluten-free sugar cone!

Off the Hook, Stoney Creek, ON (NO LONGER IN OPERATION)
African Lion Safari Allergen Menus


Giggling at the big pig
Didi and the pygmy goat
This ostrich tried to attack me (from outside the truck)
That ostrich's friend, not to be trusted either
My fav part of the day, baby monkey!


Genesis 1:24 Then God said, “Let the earth bring forth the living creature according to its kind: cattle and creeping thing and beast of the earth, each according to its kind”; and it was so. 25 And God made the beast of the earth according to its kind, cattle according to its kind, and everything that creeps on the earth according to its kind. And God saw that it was good.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Sesame Place

Our family endeavoured an 8 hour (plus due to traffic on the way there) journey in the car to Langhorne, Pennsylvania's Sesame Place. With season's passes and toddlers in tow it made for a busy and memorable vacation. We stayed at the Marriott across the road and took our time (5 days) to explore the park. Enjoy our photo/video collection below (about 8 minutes running time).

It is easy to get lost in "the hype." One of our most memorable moments of the trip was on our last night in Pennsylvania. Dusk. We were walking back to the hotel from dinner. Thousands of fireflies were flitting to and fro inches above the fields of grass beside the park. Each individual light sporadically shared its glow and helped illuminate our path.

"But will God indeed dwell on the earth? Behold, heaven and the heaven of the heavens cannot contain You..." -1 Kings 8:27

Lord, thank You for a moment of Your majesty. Help me to be a light that illuminates paths for others. Amen.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Dinner Fails

Dinner was a disaster tonight. I had bought canned salmon. I thought I was buying flaked salmon, like tuna. No. It was skin-on, bone-in, stinky-sitting-in-my-fish-juices salmon. My plans to create salmon cakes, quickly fleeted into the compost. When I look at something I am about to eat and think, "EW!" I don't even bother. My next thought was to make roast beef sandwiches. Wrong again. The sandwich meat I had purchased had a small hole in the air tight packaging and the meat was dehydrated. Into the compost too. I ended up making butter dill sole with some leftover grains from the night before.

I also tripped on a toy and banished them all from the kitchen.

"Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink...." -Matthew 6:25a

I find it interesting that Jesus says do not worry. Not try not to worry. Do not worry. I find the best way to tackle my problem is with an action that replaces worry. Prayer. In the example above, cooking something else to eat.

It was my hope to post a new gluten-free recipe for salmon cakes tonight, perhaps another. I hope to post some of our gluten-free experiments and finds this summer as we journey through July and August. Happy Summer.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Out of the mouths of babes Part II (100th Post)

Rylyn's had a few choice words of late.

Upon receiving one Lays Ketchup chip to eat with her breakfast, "Sometimes gluten-free tastes good."

Mom: What's your name?
Rylyn: Dalgleish Michael
(Her last name and second middle name).

Mom: How old are you?
Rylyn: Big.


Psalm 9

 1-2 I’m thanking you, God, from a full heart,
    I’m writing the book on your wonders.
I’m whistling, laughing, and jumping for joy;
    I’m singing your song, High God.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Live. Learn. Love.

In attempt to simplify my blogging, I am going to try a new format.


Yesterday began with sleeping in and being late for work (which for me is the last minute a teacher can legally arrive, 15 minutes before students). Already running behind, I had opened the door to a flat tire. Chris pumped it up, eliminating the time I had for Timmies (breakfast and lunch). I was feeling like my day was off to a bad start. Then I heard Tim Bosma's wife on the radio and perspective brought me to tears. I decided to turn my day around and be thankful for those three people playing in the picture above and committed to praying for the Bosma's when I felt like things were going wrong.

Believe me, there was more that went wrong with my day, but last year on mother's day weekend I was fearful of Rylyn having Cystic Fibrosis and losing her. Today, I am grateful for the small reminder to enjoy the time you have been given with your loved ones now.


Psalm 97:4-6

The Message (MSG)
His lightnings light up the world;
Earth, wide-eyed, trembles in fear.
The mountains take one look at God
And melt, melt like wax before earth’s Lord.
The heavens announce that he’ll set everything right,
And everyone will see it happen—glorious!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Ugly Art

Rylyn loves to colour in brown...why? A rainbow full of hues and she picks the colour of dirt, of diapers...every single time.

I will spare you a photo of her art. Her technique is unflawed, she just needs to work on finding colours that work with her favourite! ;)

Instead enjoy these most recent shots below.

He forgives your sins—every one.
    He heals your diseases—every one.
    He redeems you from hell—saves your life!
    He crowns you with love and mercy—a paradise crown.
    He wraps you in goodness—beauty eternal.
    He renews your youth—you’re always young in his presence.

-Psalm 103:3-5, The Message

Our sin is ugly, but God transforms us. Just like Rylyn sees something worthy in brown, He sees something redeemable in us.

Gluten-free rainbow cupcakes for a special 1st Birthday
"Arghhh, you're 1!" Auntie Laura, sorry, too Internet worthy not to post
The birthday girl
Cake may be more of Rylyn's thing...
Kiss me I'm Irish
Easter egg hunting
Live Easter bunnies at Bronte Creek in Oakville

Thursday, February 28, 2013

Good Times

I finally opened up iMovie and experimented. This video (although a slideshow of photos) took me a 1/4 of the time it usually does with a program I know how to operate. It took under an hour fully fumbling around. I made it for my class to show them what I have been up to when I go back to work tomorrow. With our family sporting some new technology (laptop, iPad and iPhone), I am hoping Chris will be able to send me photos of their adventures while he is home with girls while I am working. Pictures are worth a thousand words and I have been enjoying sending picture texts to him.

Enjoy the video. Some of the photos will look familiar as I have used our recent favourites.

Ecclesiastes 7:14

The Message (MSG)
14 On a good day, enjoy yourself;
On a bad day, examine your conscience.
God arranges for both kinds of days
So that we won’t take anything for granted.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Crafting Leftovers

Afternoon project: Using up scrap paper and embellishments to make cards.

"She finds items with potential and enjoys making them into things to treasure." A scrapbooker looks at Proverbs 31, paraphrase

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Holiday Highlights

My card tree

Happy 2nd Birthday Rylyn

Christmas Eve 
Sleigh ride

Becoming an Aunt and welcoming my niece Lucy on Boxing Day
December brought its usual bustle. Attending the live nativity mentioned in a previous post alongside opening up a couple gifts each evening (rather than the marathon on Christmas morning) helped keep our hearts and minds in the right place.

Bible Reflections:

"For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind." Isaiah 65:17

-The past two years have brought much change to our family. We survived 2 under 2 and a Celiac Disease diagnosis. I often pray that I would be able to cherish the present moments and that my mistakes may be redeemed. As I welcome this new year I also pray that whatever cannot be redeemed, may it fall from my mind that 2013 would be greeted in freedom.