Tag Archives: gluten free

menus & prepping & success


Last week I was terribly and completely unprepared. Mother’s Day was lovely but I did not complete any of my prep work. So today, I am made lists and menus. I cooked and prepped. I gotta say, it is a good feeling to know I have go-to snacks and lunches ready.

#foodprepsunday included:

Dinner Menu:

Sunday: Steak & Citrus Shrimp, fancy potatoes and a salad

Monday: Cuban Shredded Beef, rice & black beans

Tuesday: Man Pleasing Chicken, brussels & potato hash

Wednesday: Cheeseburger Macaroni Casserole (two batches – one with elbow noodles for AJ & Q, one with cauliflower for me)

Thursday: Steaks or Breakfast (Band practice for Q, walking club for mom, Big Man is in charge of dinner)

Friday: Hawaiian Crockpot Chicken, rice, green beans or snap peas

Saturday: Ribs, potato salad, slaw & salads

And this is a great start.

I have some basics to get me started. I have lots of fruit in the fridge and I have bananas ripening to be made into pumpkin vanilla muffins in a few days.

I will also plan out my exact lunches and breakfast each night so work mornings are smoother. Lunches and breakfasts will include: eggs, paleo bread, smoothies, burgers, soups and cucumber salads. Snacks of fruit, nuts, soup, hardboiled eggs, cucumbers with salsa, and other veggies will be on hand so I can just grab & go.  I have lots of options.

Options and preparation will be key  to success….right now success means sticking to the gluten free thing (it works, as much as I hate that it works, it works…more on this later) and I very much want to focus on eating enough vegetables. Fruit is easy but vegetables take some work to get enough servings each day. To start,  I am going to aim for 6 veggie servings, with a serving being one cup, each day.

I am setting myself up for success.




menu plan monday


It has been a while since I posted my menu plans. I have been making them every week but not posting them…silly me.

So, here ya go!


Monday: Man-pleasing chicken, cauliflower & broccoli, mashed potatoes

Tuesday: Sausage stuffed pepper casserole, big salad

Wednesday: Spaghetti (Zoodles) and Meat sauce, grilled chicken & leftover salad

Thursday: Grilled Chicken Caesar Salad, Beef Nachos

Friday: Anniversary Date-night at Home! Prime Rib, twice baked potatoes, braised radishes. Pink wine or champagne and a gluten free cake from local bakery!!

Saturday: Polynesian-style Wild Boar, Fried Rice

Sunday: Chicken Cutlets.


What’s on your dinner menu this week?

GF update


remember when I posted last week and I said I was experimenting with a gluten free diet?!?

Well, I have survived 7 whole days with almost no gluten.  I think the only time I had some sneaky gluten was the other night when my husband made burgers. He added some breadcrumbs to the meat mixture before he remembered my experiment. I didn’t freak out. This is a huge change for my little family and while I tried to be prepare us, it is a change and it will take some getting used to.

Thoughts on the first seven days:

  • This is harder than I thought – I have to be prepared. I often take leftovers for lunch but when there aren’t any in the fridge, I can’t just make a sandwich.
  • This is not as hard as I thought – as long as I plan and prep, I think this will be ok. I need to give myself the time for both of those things.
  • I was eating a lot of bread and I was in denial about just how much.
  • My sweet tooth is connected to my wheat tooth. Case in point – I cannot walk past brownies and not eat one. Or two. Or six. I wish I was kidding. However, I can easily say no to candy.  So, for me, not eating wheat/gluten has been helped keep my sweet tooth calm. Just one sweet wheat treat and I need/want MORE.
  • I have been tracking on MFP and it is not driving me crazy. I have tried many times to stay consistent with my tracking but I don’t think my head was not in the right place. So, I stopped. This time, it feels different. I have taken a lot of the stress out of the equation. I am simply using this tool to see what I am eating. No judgement.
  • It is very easy to undereat while eating gluten free. At least, it is easy for me during this transition. Last night, I wasn’t feeling too hot -nothing I could really explain, I just felt off – when I looked at my MFP daily totals I was only at 12oo cals. 1200 cals is not nearly enough calories for me, for a whole day. No wonder I didn’t feel right. I ate 2 eggs, some tortilla chips and homemade salsa and I felt so much better.
  • Turkey Kill Original Vanilla Ice Cream, Klondike Bars (the original and the double chocolate), LaraBars and dried cherries are ALL gluten free. This is good to know! I still need some sweet in my life and I like dessert, so it is nice to have a few options.
  • I am feeling some improvement. I am not crazy-lady itching to the point where I feel out of control and I haven’t had any serious pangs of pain in my gremlin for a few days. Tiny improvement is enough for now because I really wasn’t expecting to see any improvement. Especially, so soon.

It has been an interesting week. I feel good about choosing to experiment with gluten free. I was procrastinated for quite a while before finally diving in. I did it my way and I think that made this week’s transition “easy” for me and my family. This weekend coming up I am going to meal prep enough to ensure I don’t undereat. I will make snacks/mini-meals that will be easy to grab and eat with minimal work.

Do you have any go-to gluten free snacks or mini meals you can recommend? Link me, please, I love recipes!!

gremlins, itchies & glutenfree



Actually, only one gremlin. I have been dealing with stomach issues for almost two years. I get this pain in my left side, up near my ribs. At first, I thought it was an ulcer because spicy food caused me immediate pain. It wasn’t an ulcer. After a year of dealing with this pain, I finally went to a GI doc. My GP put me on an acid controller but that didn’t really do anything.

The GI put me through every test he had: colonoscopy, endocscopy, CT scans, ultrasounds, stomach emptying scans, blood tests and maybe more. The results: nothing, nada. No physical reason for these pains I continue to experience.  Yes, this is great news! I don’t have any craziness going on internally – no cancer or tumors or damage. For this I am thankful. However, one year (of doctors and tests) later and I still have no answers.

Since I don’t have a name for what is going on in my stomach, I call it my gremlin. When I get pangs of pain I say, “my gremlin is pissed off” or something similar.  My gremlin has been a thorn in my side for well over two years. Sometimes, the gremlin is accompanied with bloating and gas and cramps but there is almost always a bruise-like feeling in my upper left stomach quadrant.

Its not the cute fuzzy gremlin, its the gremlin after a midnight feeding.


Because having my very own gremlin isn’t enough, I decided to get itchy. All over itchy. At first I just thought I had a bad case of dry skin, of season changed dry skin. I have used the same laundry soap, shampoo & conditioner, and body wash for years so I know its not that causing itching. I don’t use a lot of lotions or perfumes and the ones I use are very mellow.  I’ve seen my doctor and now I am seeing an allergist.

Guess what?!?

Once again, all the tests come back negative. However, I react as soon as I am touched with the allergy test pin. My skin is so irritated. I will spare you the pictures because it is just icky. My lower leg/ankles are tore up like I walked through a field of chiggers except I didn’t. I will spare you any more details but let’s just say I itch everywhere. All the time.

And it is so not sexy to itch all the time. Itching so much has definitely messed with my head and I often feel like I am going crazy. It is hard to be on your game when you itch all the time. I have gained a lot of weight back in the last three years (ankle/knee injury, surgery, recovery, gremlins & itchies).

Gluten Free

As a last ditch effort to hopefully heal my gremlin and itchies, I have decided to try a gluten free experiment.  I have already tried eliminating nightshades and other major allergens, all to no relief. I have held off on gluten free because it just seems so trendy. I did complete a round of Whole30 but I just could not sustain that for longer than 30 days. I did that for weightloss and not health reasons.

I am hoping, this is GF experiment is different. I am only focused on feeling better and I am not going to be restricting anything other than gluten.

I am seeking health.  I don’t want stomach issues or itchies anymore. Please let this help.

I will be using myfitnesspal.com to track my food but weight loss is not my focus. I set my calories pretty high after research pointed me in that direction. To heal a gut, the body needs plenty of calories not to be restricted. I am only focusing on gluten free. I am not going to go crazy and buy all sorts of GF flours but rather, I am going to keep food as simple as possible. Produce and meats, rice and the occasional sweet. My coffee will remain GF as its been all along (who knew?!?) with creamer & splenda.

I figure this is an experiment so I will ease into it. For right now, I am keeping it simple but as the weeks progress I may need a bread alternative. Or I may cut back on sugar or sweets or potatoes or beans…whatever. I am not planning that far ahead. I have created a board on Pinterest and since I love cooking, I am going to make this experiment as fun  and sustainable as possible.

So this is where I have been. I hid a lot of this from the world. I didn’t want to admit to myself what problem this actually been. I’m out now. I’m ready to find a happy place,