Camping With the “super allergic” Kid

It is now fall! The air is finally getting cooler, the nights are getting longer, and the kids activities are in full swing!! School, sports, music lessons and endless errands make this time of year fun, enriching, and a bit hectic. Eating on the run is tough for any family. But with an allergic kid or two (or three), eating is downright inconvenient. With middle school and high-school aged kids, being the “super allergic” kid is yet another thing for kids to be self-conscious about.

For my son, fall also means it is time for Cub Scouts and camping!! This weekend we venture out for the first pack camp-out of the year. Continue reading

Phabulous Pho

Since starting GAPS we have long struggled to get enough bone broth. For one, it is tough to make with our busy work and activity schedule. Neither of us loves the task, especially the post-processing: it is messy and smelly and adds to an already heavy cleanup load (we cook three meals a day pretty much every day). Secondly, we just do not love the taste of bone broth – especially beef broth (though we know it is one of the most nourishing foods).

In an effort to bring some variety to our diet, we gave rice noodles a try. We experimented a few times with rice noodles in place of Italian pasta (yes we do zucchini fettuccini and spaghetti squash), but it just wasn’t that great. Rice noodles clumped up and just weren’t the same as traditional pasta (this was before we discovered there are rice pastas). Not long ago I remembered way back when we lived and worked in the city, I used to go for Pho with my co-workers. Broth, noodles, meat and vegetables…how GAPS (well, other than the noodles).

Soup night can be a bit of a downer with my kids. A little bit of Pinterest and blog surfing and I cobbled together a recipe that my family (kids included) loved! Sorry, no photos now but i will update this post with photos next time I make it.

One of the keys to this recipe is to do a good mise-en-place (prep everything before you start cooking). There are lots of thin strips that make this dish easier to eat with a spoon or chop sticks. Continue reading

Hot Cross Gluten-Free, Egg-Free, Dairy-Free Bread

mini-loaf of bread

UPDATE: I have adapted the recipe and made it more akin to “regular” bread. Not 100% GAPS compliant, but fits in to Paleo. A nice variation for special occasions, but not an everyday thing.
This year we are dealing with some dietary setbacks. My son’s allergies that we thought were improving have taen a turn for the worse. He now has asthma which seems to be triggered by pollen, when he has a cold, and other unknown triggers. Luckily his teachers are very aware and helpful with his condition. Another setback has been with my oldest daughter. She has fought skin issues off and on, so we had an allergy test. She is allergic to dairy and eggs! This was especially tough to hear since we have been doing GAPS/Paleo for five years now…plus we raise and sell pastured, organic fed chicken and eggs. For her, it has added to the social awkwardness of eating non-SAD.

With Easter fast approaching, I wanted to experiment with making a gluten-free, dairy free, egg free, nut free bread-like equivalent for Good Friday. I wanted to complete the experiment this weekend so we can make a fresh loaf Friday morning. I read many recipes and read a few posts about ingredient substitutes. I found a combination and method that seem to fit the bill. Continue reading

Hakuna Frittata

Hakuna frittata! With potato, red pepper, fresh herbs, pepper jack and cheddar!

Hakuna frittata! With potato, red pepper, fresh herbs, pepper jack and cheddar!

Hakuna Matata, what a wonderful phrase…Hakuna frittata simple breakfast, lunch, or dinner for busy days! We love our frittatas. Fast, simple, and only one pan to clean. We usually make use of leftover breakfast meats and last-night’s leftover vegetables. Frittata is a perfect catch-as-catch-can meal that is infinitely flexible. The key is to not overload the pan with ingredients- also make sure you reserve some cheese to top the frittata just before the oven-finishing step. Continue reading

Store-bought items that meet GAPS (or close enough) & GAPS Efficiency


Parsely, Chives, Kale

We are a family of 5 (Mom, Dad, three kids aged 2,5,8 when we started GAPS) and we are doing the GAPS thing as a family. We were previously following much of the Nourishing Traditions and Alice Water’s recommendations. GAPS seemed like a necessary step to help with my yound son’s multiple food allergies. As our kids grow, as do their extra-curricular activities (church choir, piano lessons, sports, and hobies). There are times when GAPS feels great- we have adjusted our eating and lifestyle to focus on gut health as much as possible, we lost some weight, feel good about our dollar-votes). Even though we often times neglect  the non-food lifestyle components of the protocol, we try to remain active outdoors and sleep as well as we can. But no doubt about it, GAPS is a lot of work compared to the standard American (or other developed countries that have similar habits) diet. It is not convenient. It takes planning,  careful shopping, and quite candidly a boatload of labor per meal. But we have reached a point (3.5 years in) where we have made certain choices to simplify things and occasionally that has meant purchasing store-bought items that are GAPS-compliant (or close enough). I will share in this post (and update over time) products we’ve tried, some items we use and tips for making GAPS more convenient. Sure there are times when we probably get more Omega 6 than optimal, but hey, we take fermented Cod Liver Oil so cut us some slack! Continue reading

US Wellness Meats (Review)

ImageWe are fortunate to live in a location with access to multiple local sources of grassfed/grass-finished beef, pastured pork, pasture-raised chickens/eggs, Whole Foods, Co-ops, and multiple farmer’s markets. We also are getting up to snuff on our own little farming venture with an established apple/plum/peach orchard, about a 1/4 acre vegetable garden, 2-dozen chickens, and a couple of bee hives.

However, even with all of these resources at our disposal, we do have a couple of annual family trips we like to take to destinations without access to similar resources. Continue reading

Bulletproof Coffee!

Update #2 (August 2015): I have since stopped drinking my coffee “Bulletproof” style. I found that I was struggling with my weight earlier this spring. I then heard several podcast discussions about BP coffee and realized that it was simply adding a lot of calories that I simply wasn’t using up. Also, I have not been doing intermittent fasting as much lately, so Bulletproof coffee just wasn’t as necessary to carry me through the fasting periods.

Since leaving off from Bulletproof coffee on a daily basis my weight has stabilized and I have not noticed a loss of energy or mental performance. I have made one other slight change recently: when I am writing or need to study for long periods of time, I will drink 1-2 cups of green tea after my morning coffee. I picked up on this tip from Tim Ferris – apparently there are complementary stimulants between coffee, green tea, and black tea (so I have coffee early, green tea later in the morning if needed, and occasionally black tea if I really need a boost).

UPDATE: A recent article on HuffPo got me thinking again about why I chose to start drinking bulletproof coffee (the technique more than the brand). I thought I would update my own post with the science I researched before venturing down this path. Continue reading