Monday, September 12, 2016

I'm still here - I promise!!!

Wow! Can't believe it's been so long since I've posted. Crazy! I'm sorry.

The heat has wrought pure havoc on my garden - though the sweet basil and lemon basil continue to grow wild. It's great!! I haven't had to buy basil at the market since spring! Woot!! This week we're finally enjoying temps below the 100's... but it won't last. Next week is supposed to jump up again. I can't wait for it to cool off enough to start planting my fall garden.

From the kids' last visit - there's actually
3 dogs there. Lol! Bear, Hunter and Loki.
This week, though, is more of the crazy. Lol.  Today and tomorrow are stacked with my continuing education course, attempts at gluten free baking, recipe development research, household rearranging, and packing. This morning our son-in-law shipped out for deployment. We'll miss him so much! Our daughter is finishing up her packing, then Wednesday morning we head to California to load her up and bring her home. While it'll be nice to have her close by, I'm sure she'd rather have her hubby. Lol. It'll be interesting to see how long it takes Bear (her lab) to adjust to living with (not just visiting) our Hunter and Loki.

On the personal health front - I've got a fabulous new doctor - a Naturopath, and I'm thrilled. My former doctor just wasn't cutting it with this menopause crap. My first appointment, the new doc sat with me for over an hour - asking questions, explaining treatments. He called me by name throughout. I cried. Finally someone in the medical field was actually listening to me! He ran a ton of bloodwork, and asked if I was ok with making immediate changes to my drug protocol while we wait for the results... Oh, you mean the ones that aren't working???Ummmm, YES!! He pulled me off the drugs the previous doc had me on right then and there. I went home with hope, a shot in the butt, and a new protocol. Within 48 hours the night sweats were gone. Within the next 24 hours the low grade headache I've had for months was gone. Wow!

Once my bloodwork came back, he spent another hour with me going over it. Incredible!! We're working together to restore my health using a whole-life approach and I love it! I am so looking forward to feeling good again! It's such a relief to know that the wonkiness in my life isn't just "me" - it's a direct result of my hormones being out of whack. And we're fixing it. I'm so grateful! If you're in the phoenix metro area, and looking for a doctor who actually cares, check out Protea Medical Center in Chandler - Dr. McCarthy. You will NOT be disappointed!

Currently, my treatment includes a T-shot once a week (combination of testosterone and estrogen), and a daily progesterone sublingual and a thyroid pill. We're watching my bloodwork and adjusting as we go. Additionally, he suspects a correlation between my joint flare ups and gluten - so I'm on a 30 day gluten-free diet. I've been GF before, but for some reason it's particularly challenging this time. I don't know what my deal is but it's been rough. Weird.

So, being me, I'm doing a ton of research and testing. Today I managed to create some banana chocolate chip muffins that are TASTY, high protein and GF. Next time, I'll add another mashed banana, just to make that flavor stronger, but the experiment was a success!! Next up is my first attempt at making artisan GF bread. Hopefully it'll knock this insane craving I've had for french bread. Lol.

In other news... The hubby and I recently made the decision to invest in a camper and ATV. We wanted the ability to take off on whim - with the dogs.  We both have a love of camping, though haven't done any in years. The idea of a toyhauler was especially appealing - we could load the ATV right in and hit the road - and be able to get around wherever we go. Plus with the smaller set up, we wouldn't need to upgrade Bill's truck (an expense we don't want right now).

We did tons of research (of course, lol), shopped and shopped, and finally made our choice. We carefully examined the specs for each and it was perfect! The Can-Am (street legal) would fit just right into the Forest River toyhauler (little one). So... we did the deal. Picked up the trailer, headed over to load up the Can-Am and BOOOOOOO. No joy. It seriously didn't fit. Not by a little... by a LOT. Turns out our trailer has an upgraded cabinet tower that isn't listed on the spec sheet. Crap. Much scratching of heads, a lot more cussing, and finally the good folks at the dealership said they'll figure it out. So we dropped it all off with them and let their team scratch their heads and swear. Lol.  They did indeed figure it out and we are currently waiting on a new countertop - then we'll be ready to go.

They sent me a pic of the ATV inside the trailer so we know it really fits now. Lol!
Like I said, we got the little trailer, lol.  But it's just perfect for us. Bill and I and the pups can head out into the wilderness - hike, play, fish, whatever! It can actually sleep 6, but we've told all the kids it only sleeps 2, haha! You'll keep my secret, right? ;-)

We've already scouted out our first campsite - not too far from home, but up in the pine & aspens. Can't wait!!
There's our setup! Woohoo! 

Ok - I've got to get back to my studies. What's the subject of my new certification? Well, let's just say I know more about sperm than I ever thought there was to know. LOL!!

And if you were interested... Here's the muffin recipe....

Banana Chocolate Chip Muffins (GF)
makes 6 muffins

1 cup Glutino GF Muffin flour
2 mashed ripe bananas
2 eggs
1/2 c greek yogurt
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/3 c Enjoy Life (df) mini chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350 degrees & spray your muffin pan
In a medium bowl, mash bananas. Add eggs, yogurt, and vanilla and mix well.
Add flour and mix well.
Add chocolate chips and mix.
Pour into muffin tin and bake 15-18 minutes. They're done when you can insert a sharp knife and pull it out clean.
Allow to cool 5-10 minutes.

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