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To BBQ or not to BBQ… That is the question?

I have decided that change of seasons means changing up my menu plan, and I am not so good at doing that… After a long hard winter of cooking casseroles and hardy soups, it’s time to crack out that BBQ, throw together salads and think about side dishes for your burgers… Easy, peasy you would think, not for me though, I struggle with change in any situation, but thinking about cooking is even more difficult, my mind goes completely blank!

So this is how far I have got this week with menu planning and grocery shopping…
Burgers
Sausages
Risotto
Some kind of chicken dish
Lots of salad
A pasta bake of some kind

Pathetic really, but my mind is totally blank to what we normally cook when Spring arrives!

Of course breastfeeding a newborn restricts my choices, no tomatoes or onions, in fact absolutely no gas producing veggies at all, so that rules out favorites like kale and broccoli, not that my children are too upset about those being on the menu, but I am missing them!

My reduced dairy diet has been good for me, I had a non fat milk drink in Starbucks yesterday and it seemed to have had no affect on Tate, but I think for me a low dairy intake diet seems to have improved my digestive system, so this will be something that I will keep ongoing, I’m not saying no dairy just reducing my intake, hopefully this will keep the IBS at bay!

Now to try the gluten reduced diet, one diet at a time to see what helps me feel better! I have kind of reduced my gluten intake anyway… I always buy Trader Joes gluten free oatmeal and pasta now, of course things like rice and quinoa are naturally gluten free, but this week I actually looked for gluten free foods, cereals and flours, I was very surprised how easy it was to find lots of dairy and gluten free foods and how well they were priced!

After spending the afternoon cleaning the BBQ, of course when I say this I do mean Paul spent the afternoon cleaning our BBQ, it was time to light it up and cook the first outdoor grilled meal of the year… Yay, Spring is here! The weather was beautiful yesterday, 70f, sunny and just purely wonderful after a very long and very cold winter… Of course I did not get any photos as I had to take a nap, feeling very tired with waking every two hours throughout the night, but I did wake up just as the food was finished cooking!

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Here is the link for this recipe… Very easy gluten free waffles

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A thirst for knowledge…

Being a new Mom again in my forties, makes me realize how much I’ve grown as a person, I realize how much more knowledge I have about myself, my body and my mind! When I first began breastfeeding 14 years ago I was totally green, I didn’t realize the things I did and ate could affect my newborn child… I blindly learnt to nourish my now teenage boy, did it do him any harm? I would say not, but as a newborn maybe he suffered the pain of gas in his newly developing tummy… This is something we will never know!

Now in this age of the internet, where our thirst for knowledge is answered almost immediately, we can learn about all sorts of things… Our bodies, the way we look after them and the best foods to eat to protect them! Sleep deprivation can be one of those things that drive us to question our diets and what we can do to prevent our tiny babies and their tender tummies from aching!

With all this in mind, I am setting out to try to reduce my gluten and dairy intake. The gluten is a personal thing, due to flare ups of irritable bowel syndrome, I don’t want to be completely obsessed with cutting out gluten, just try to reduce my intake where I can! I honestly believe my huge intake of dairy is affecting my baby boy, I didn’t realize how many things I consume contain dairy… My beloved Starbucks coffees, the cream cheese bagel I ate for lunch, the list goes on… So here is what I’ve done so far, I have replaced the non fat milk in my Starbucks drinks to soy milk, not actually as bad as I thought, at home I bought lactaid milk and low lactose cheese, I have even treated myself to a dairy free chocolate ice cream… Actually I was surprised how good this was and not too badly priced either! So far so good, I actually got a whole 3 hours sleep last night, which I haven’t had for a while and the red spots on my baby boys face seem to be fading a little bit… Of course all of this could be coincidence, but it’s worth trying!

As for the gluten, that is a work in progress, I’ve been researching making my own gluten free flour to replace all purpose flour in recipes, I have also been looking at where I can buy cheaper flours online to reduce the cost! I was surprised in the grocery store when I actually looked for gluten free items, how many of our day to day purchases were now gluten free and also a good price, a lot were on weekly special prices, making a diet change not only a lot easier than I thought but a lot cheaper too!

It’s hard in a large family to concentrate on a full diet change, so I’m aiming to just reduce my gluten intake, go dairy free for about a week and see if it helps my little boy… But of course we are what we eat so healthy eating continues with lots of salads, fruit and all things healthy and delicious… Not sure my older children love it… But that’s just how I roll these days!

Just incase anyone wants to try a gluten free diet I found a couple of links to help you get started…
Olive Garden style garlic breadsticks – gluten free
Gluten free all purpose flour blend
Classic gluten free waffles
Lemon, blueberry waffles – gluten free

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