Saturday, December 28, 2013

Slow Cooked Beef Curry




 Whilst I am not able to sew until I finish moving my sewing room, I thought I would share some of my recipes that are yummy...
Enjoy!

Slow Cooked Beef Curry.
Prep time: 15 mins
Cook time:  8 hours slow cook
Serves: 6-8

Ingredients:

1kg cubed casserole beef
2 brown onions, thickly sliced
2 tbsp ground Cumin
2 tbsp ground Coriander
2 tbsp Garam Marsala
2 tsp Sweet Paprika
1/2 tsp ground Turmeric
2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes
1/2 cauliflower, cut into florets (frozen if fresh unavailable)
6 carrots, peeled, thickly sliced 
1 cup chopped beans (frozen)
1 tin coconut cream 
fresh coriander
Salt to taste.

Instructions:
  • Put cubed beef in slow cooker.
  • Add spices to the beef, rub into beef with bare hands (washed of course).
  • Add onion, Carrot, tinned tomatoes and coconut cream.
  • Mix with a spoon.
  • Cook on 'Low' heat for 6-8 hours in the slow cooker
2 Hours before serving:
  • Add cauliflower and beans.
·       Serve on a bed of steaming Basmati rice and garnish with the fresh coriander, and sour cream if desired.
 Notes:
I have seen similar versions to this but I prefer to add everything to the slow cooker and let it do all the hard work.
Bon Appetit !

Friday, December 27, 2013

Six Long Months




Well Blog friends (if I have any left) it has been a long six months since I posted last, what a bad girl I am…
Life has been very busy and I have battled a few health issues, some remain ongoing. But shock Horror I have managed to get some sewing done in the last couple of weeks. I had a lovely day @Khristina’s having a Christmas party sew-in with a couple of the local CRAFT group girls. We each made a lovely Star Trivet from “The Bronze Wombat” Blog it was fun and I managed finishing off the binding at home. I was so inspired that I made a cute pink one for my friend Kate…

What else has been going on here? Well we added a new fur baby to our family…
His Name is Phoenix and we adopted him from the RSPCA at one of the local adoption sites throughout our area. He is such a delight and I think Charlie is finally getting used to him. They groom each other (mostly Phoenix does the grooming) and spend time running round the house playing chasey.


My sewing room has often felt like a Ghost Town because I just have not had the gumption to get in there and sew…it has not helped that it is one of those rooms that feel the heat and the cold and is not a place you really want to be. That will be changing in the New Year though, we will have our large room at the back of the house back when our DD2’s best friend moves out into another friends house. Long story short, she could not live with her family due to some serious issues with one of the family members, 3 years later she is moving out. Don’t get me wrong we have loved having her here; we have given her a home to live in because we believed she would have ended up in dire straights otherwise. And it seems to have made a difference in her life. No she still cannot move “Home” but is working on those relationships.
So having said all that we are having a big move around, DS14 is moving into that room with his many electrical devices (Xbox, Computer etc) and I will be moving my sewing room up into his old room in the house. It will be cooler in summer (air con) and warmer in winter so I might be inspired to sew something. Keep your eyes peeled for future posts.

We have just celebrated Christmas and are heading into the New Year…what will it bring, I wonder. I pray it brings peace and joy for us and for all the readers out there.
In keeping with the New Year and hope for the future I will be posting a competition in the beginning of January so keep checking back to get a chance to go in the draw.
Well I have said enough for now…
Happy Stitching
Amanda

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

A Reply







I have meant to reply to a comment posted after one of my Blog posts about my dietary changes but of course have been too ill and distracted… so here goes


“Thank you for sharing what you are going through, your diet change, and what it is~ I am also trying to lose weight, and it has been next to impossible. I don't have any digestive issues...just can't seem to lose. I've gone from vegetarian, to vegan to raw to juicing to raw and juicing and I've decided I need to eat a small amount of protein, some veggies and a little fruit and some oils. That is it. Sounds almost like what you are doing. Anyways, it was interesting to read what you are dealing with”.

Thanks Cathy, it sounds like you are on a journey just as I am...I hope you find the right combination for you that will help kick start your weight loss. I do know that the key ingredient in any weight loss regime is exercise, bah, very sad but true. Unfortunately my exercise regime gets forgotten or is just too hard some days...I am working on it though.
I am a firm believer that weight loss starts in your mind, if you are not in the right frame of mind or distracted then it becomes a real battle, having the right frame of mind at the time is a major help when making choices about exercise and food.

I also believe it makes it easier if you are able to forgive yourself when you fall off the wagon so to speak…when I eat that chocolate or drink that full milk Latte with vanilla flavor (not that I can drink full fat milk anymore), I have to remember that it was just once and I should not throw out the entire diet and exercise regime just because I failed once. My trouble is I feel guilt about it and let it change my mindset about how I am doing. Guilt is the enemy of the mind when it comes to weight loss.
I have to say to my self OK you blew it today but tomorrow is another day and I can start again.
Weight loss only gets harder the older you get sadly, so I hope those who are on any kind of weight loss journey will take my advice and be kind to yourself, forgive yourself when you fall off the wagon and jump back on.
Happy Weight loss
Amanda

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Long Time No See


A Busy time…
Well don’t fall off your rockers folks here I am blogging again for the first time in 2 months. Life has been indeed busy and I have had a lot of sickness to contend with hence my absence from my blog.
Now I don’t promise this is going to be any great read, but I do promise it will be a bit of a catch up on the last 2 months.
Sickness and Battles…
After the great start to my elimination diet it all had to go by the wayside due to having to have tests that required me to go back on a “regular” diet. Not long after that I ended up in surgery so I have spent a while recovering from that and trying to find out the cause of certain illness.
No great shock it is age related (pooh) and I have to investigate a path of treatment that suits me, I would much rather that then just blindly follow what the GP says is OK…says HE a male Doctor who does not have to suffer what we women must go through at a certain time of life.
We had a new fence erected and the gardens were "simplified" here are some before and after shots of the work...can you see a difference?


Our Yard was tidied up and a new fence erected.



Happier Times…
Well after not doing much sewing at all this year I finally got my house blocks done for the house block swap I have been doing with our online CRAFT group.
I thought I was going to die before I could get them done, but Praise God they are done and handed in. now just waiting on the others to come back to me and then onwards with putting it all together.

I tidied my sewing room and actually got a top finished for my DD who has been waiting for 7 months for me to put together something with the fabrics I bought for her at the craft fair in October last year.  I bought the Ghastlies fabric and managed to get some yardage for the backing from the States. I just have to sandwich it together quilt it and bind it and she will be happier.
I seem to have lost my Mojo again, I am just tired all the time and not really motivated to get into the sewing room. That will change I have no doubt….
I Recently found an old Genoa Lounge in an op shop and was so happy when I got to bring it home and call it mine. Hubby and I have longed for one of these little beauties most of our married life and yippee we got one…it is not too shabby and will be re-covered in the next year. So now my love for all things 1930-1940’s comes back to life.
Maybe I just yearn for the simpler life of 1940”s yes we were a world at war but the amazing people and the things they did to “make do” is really inspiring…
Alright this is becoming a novel and I need to rest…so Hopefully in the near future you will see some more posts about the sewing I am doing (hoping) and even the decorating I am doing in the lounge to match a 1940’s style.
Happy stitching
Amanda

Friday, April 5, 2013

Some Sewing

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Don’t fall off your chair, or sofa, or bed or wherever you are reading this blog from…But I actually did some sewing for the first time in a long time, I must be feeling a bit better.
I got in and sewed up a couple of house blocks for the swap I am in,  I need to finish them by the end of this month, is there hope of that happening? Always…
I started out with paper piecing but that was too time consuming because it required my brain to be engaged and think about what I was doing…so what am I saying exactly? Well For ME (not saying this is so for anyone else) I need a lot of brain power to do the paper piecing so I don’t have to constantly “Reverse Stitch” and re-stitch a piece. I decided to do the much easier task of wonky houses…can you see the way I think? By doing wonky houses it does not matter if things are even or lined up properly, as long as they look like a house and they measure out right by the end…no problems.
I am hoping to get a bunch of them done this weekend, but we will see how I feel…
How about you? Are you sewing anything nice, do you have a project you would like to share?
Happy stitching
Amanda

Saturday, February 23, 2013

A Good Start...


Or A Great Start…
When I started the new regime I had no idea what to expect really, the Naturopath described a week of hell and then taking off like a rocket…well there has been no hell and no rockets either. Perhaps I am truly blessed because I have not had the horrible sickness she described, and I could say I have had more energy than prior but it has been hard to gauge because I was a solo parent for 12 days while Hubby was away in Thailand.
So now as I continue with hubby home and most things settling down again I may be able to see a bigger change, Time will tell…
Very nice but not the same as real coffee sadly

In the last post I promised a little more information about my intolerances and what kind of diet changes I had to make. Well it is quite drastic due to those things my body has trouble dealing with, some may just be for a season due to the fact that my body is so depleted at present and finds it difficult to cope with things I may have a slight intolerance to in the past but is exaggerated by a low immune system.
Totally yuckky...

Dairy, gluten, caffeine, most food additives and colours, vinegar, yeast, chocolate, alcohol, tea, fruits such as – nectarines, strawberry, kiwi, pineapple, berries, oranges, apple, rockmelon, red & green grapes
Pork, preserved meats, peanut, pistachio, aspartame, cane sugar, brown sugar, xylitol, molasses, honey, fructose, stevia.
All the nightshade vegetables such as white potato, tomato, eggplant & red pepper.
White wheat flour, whole wheat, corn, jasmine rice.
Sweet corn, mushrooms, sweet pickles, dill pickles, tomato sauce (catsup) anything that ferments in the gut such as soy sauce.
Most important part of  the day...

Well that’s it mostly, so what is left to eat when you eliminate all that from your diet you might ask…well quite a lot really, it just means that most of my meals are from scratch and quite basic, I do happen to be able to use most herbs and spices (with the exception of the ones made from things off the list) which really lifts the game when deciding what to make for dinner or lunch.
I can have chicken (skin free) and most of the whole meats except pork. Olive oil to cook with or canola oil, steamed veg that are on my list and you have a nice meal.
A big plus to all of the changes to my diet is a renewed ability to lose weight, my weight loss had stalled completely due to my body having a leaky gut but craving the bad things like sugar (in many forms). So I have seen the scales go down by 5.7 kilos in the 2 weeks since I made the changes.
I guess for me the hardest thing is thinking about what to have at every mealtime to keep it interesting and not become repetitive and boring.
I love the web and finding recipes that can be adapted to suit my needs, friends have sent me links or whole recipes that might be of help (and a lot are).
Sometimes it is tough going like when Hubby and I went out for the evening to the Glen Frey (of the Eagles) concert, it would have been so nice to have a drink before the concert and a coffee after, but alas it was not to be. Catching up with friends for a cuppa has become a lot harder, I have suggested we meet in a park and BYO or something like that…I certainly miss just grabbing a coffee while I am out shopping. My closest companion is my water bottle.
Next time I will try to share some of those recipe I have found that can be adapted to most diets.
Until then I hope you are healthy and happy, enjoying your life and sewing up a storm.
Happy stitching and cooking
Amanda

Saturday, February 9, 2013

A New Beginning


A new Beginning
Life has many twists and turns and we often find ourselves at a point where we have to either make complete change or perhaps lose our life to something that is overwhelming and so hard to fathom.
I have had quite a few health issues over the last few years and I won’t really go into that but just to say that if I did not make a complete change, well I would not be here to enjoy Grand kids.
Over the years My body has been my enemy, no matter what I did to improve my health it didn’t seem to make much difference. I started walking daily for 3 klm a day and Wow the benefits were amazing. But my body started to object, in the form of my arthritis. So walking became a thing of the past.
Frustrated with not being able to get out and walk for a distance without paying for it for a week after with agonizing days in bed and having many other symptoms that have seen me hospitalized a few times. I sought medical help, but after a year of searching the medical world was slightly stumped and could not offer me much in the way of an answer.
I knew that I had exhausted all medical paths and after feeling like the living dead for far too long, I decided to bite the bullet and go see a Naturopath. I have a belief that God created all things and He created them for our own good. I do believe in modern medicine and that God has certainly gifted people with amazing talent and brains, but when all that modern medicine can offer has been exhausted I felt the only alternative was to seek a more natural way.
So I am a strange subject and quite often baffle the medical establishment. I have had many allergies for most of my life and had to be rather careful of certain food types etc.
After all the testing and having a rather good handle on my health issues (so I thought) I was not prepared for the outcome of my visit.
I knew my immune system was struggling, but I had no idea just how much. Let’s put it this way, if my body was a car and my immune system was the fuel…I was running on empty (barely).
I have noticed over the last 5 years that I have been having rather massive reactions to some foods that I previously had little or no reaction to. I knew I most likely had an issue with gluten and lactose but did not realize how much that can affect everything else.
I showed intolerance's to more things than I could tolerate. Some were not a surprise and some were. The intolerance's showed themselves in many forms, whether it was a rash, hives, diarrhea, constipation, migraines etc and the list goes on. You may wonder how I managed to go along in life with such symptoms for so long, well all I can say is that we kind of got used to my weird body reacting to things in a weird way and medical people could not help so I would just have to live with it.
Having said that it is most often the case for a lot of people that Living with it is not really living and until recently I just believed it was my lot in life. How wrong could I be, I don’t have to put up with feeling like I have been run over by a heard of elephants and all the time.
My most recent symptoms were the most concerning and I have had not way of knowing it was all connected, the thought of losing my eyesight was a little scary to say the least.

The New Beginning Begins
So after seeing the Naturopath and getting an understanding as to what is causing a lot of my problems it was time to make the changes that will lead to a better life with more years of joy with my family.
You can go here to get an understanding of intolerance's.



I guess from a young age we learn that if we don’t get sick immediately after eating a certain food then we have no problem with it, it is not even a spoken thing it is just a natural fact that if we eat something and we have a reaction (visible) then we would know not to eat that food again…but intolerance's don’t work like that as you may have read.
You can eat something for years (like me) and not been aware of the connection between the way your body reacts and the food in question.
Is there an answer?
Of course there is but it might not be the answer I was hoping for. Simply because it is going to take a massive amount of work and brain energy to work through everything and come to a place of understanding my body better and how it reacts to certain foods. Changing my diet drastically so as to give my body time to heal.
The biggest threat for me at the moment is a little thing called “Candida Albiacans”

What are Your Symptoms?

  • Do you experience fatigue and "foggy" thinking?
  • Do you crave sugar, have a bloated abdomen or abdominal pain?
  • Can't lose weight no matter what you try?
  • Do you have "intimate" (male or female) infections or rashes -- to the point where they are interfering with your love life?
  • Do you have a white coating on your tongue, fungus on your toenails?
  • Have you been sent home time and again by doctors who say "nothing is wrong" with you -- when something so obviously is?
  • Do you feel 20 to 30 years older than you should?

    If any of these conditions sound familiar to you... You may be dealing with a Candida infection or Candida yeast overgrowth.



While most of these symptoms I do have like foggy brain, craving sugar not being able to lose weight, being sent home from the doctors with no answer and feeling 100 years old. I don’t have the obvious thrush symptoms ( that would have been easier to figure out) mine is strictly contained in my gut and digestive tract.

Where To From Here?
Well I have already started on the very strict elimination diet to starve the candida, the replacement of good enzymes in the stomach will aid recovery and the use of some pretty heavy duty vitamins (in powder form) will help bring my immune system back to life.
My eyesight should return to normal (hopefully no permanent damage) but the Eye doctor will be the judge of that.
I should be able to do simple things like have a shower without feeling like I have run a marathon. Concentrate on something and give it my all instead of feeling like my brain is missing. But the best thing is I should not have those debilitating migraines anymore.
I think I have jabbered on enough so I will save some of my Jibber Jabber for another post.
I think I will talk more about my specific intolerance's and allergies and how that affects what I can eat, and how I go about finding recipes and changing my life completely.
Happy Eating
Amanda

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Launceston 2013


A Fun Time Away With Hubby.

I was one very blessed woman just recently; Hubby surprised me with a weekend trip to Launceston in Tasmania for our 22nd wedding anniversary.
He is a romantic at heart (well he tries); he had plenty of input from loads of my girlfriends and his mates as well so how could he go wrong.
We flew into Launceston on Friday lunchtime and picked up our hire car.
Audi A1

Then off to the city of Launceston we went.
Checked into Alice’s Cottages, the Camelot cottage was waiting for us.
Dining/ Lounge looking into the bedroom
Fire Place

Bedroom Canopy Bed

Spa Love the Mural

Ceiling above canopy, note the crown

Lounge

We had fun exploring the local scenery and shops; we had some really nice Dickens Cider with our fresh Italian pizza for our first meal in our cottage.

We went for a drive to the Cataract Gorge and enjoyed the beauty of it all.




We rode the chairlift to the other side and enjoyed morning tea at the café with the local wildlife.





We took a drive out to the wine region and went to a lovely winery called Pipers Brook and Janz

Came home for a nap and spa and then we were going out for Dinner but ended up staying in as I didn’t feel so well (sadly) we enjoyed a very beautiful Indian meal from a local restaurant and just enjoyed each others company and the peace and quiet.
On the Sunday we were flying out in the afternoon so we went had a drive through the areas of Launceston we had not seen yet, the architecture was divine.
We went off to Evandale to the local markets where I was very sad to say I wanted to buy everything but could only fit so much in my luggage…I found a few little trinkets for my children as gifts and a couple of things for us, including Hubby’s new hat.

We had a late lunch and returned the car to the airport as we awaited our flight home.
The one thing I noticed most about Launceston was the quietness and lack of people, even in the city center on a Friday afternoon there didn’t seem to be many people around…I thought they had all been abducted by aliens (jokes). I guess it is just a sleepy kind of country town after all.

Sewing starts up again this week so I am excited to get back to Khristina’s for some fun together.
Hope you all have been sewing up a storm.
Happy Stitching
Amanda

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Two More Pretties...




Oops…
I missed blogging yesterday but didn’t miss taking my picture…


Here is a beautiful cup that my darling friend Merilyn gave me for Christmas 2012…I love it and use it all day for every cup of coffee or tea I drink…it is nice and big.


I have a beautiful tea set that I found in a little country town, however I only managed to get 2 cups and saucer sets with it…so my dear friend Judy gave me another pair for my birthday last year (2012)…I love the set.


I hope you are enjoying your new year…I hope you are using your pretty cups too.
Happy stitching and living
Amanda