Healthy lifestyle, Uncategorized

What Do I Eat?

Yesterday, I had one of my “sick” days. My body was aching every time I moved, totally body fatigue, big time brain fog, headache, no motivation. This usually lasts one day or half a day. I usually nap (yesterday for 4 hours) and be a couch potato (which I don’t want to do) and drink a ton of water to flush out my system.

My health coach, Sharron, suggested that I may have an overgrowth of Candida in my body. I’m going to give you my non-medical definition of Candida: It is a yeast or fungus that everyone has a small amount on and in their body. It’s one of those bad bacterias that gets balanced out by the good bacteria. Since Candida is a yeast, I think of making bread to compare. Any yeast needs three things to grow–moisture, sugar, and warmth. When the Candida is overgrown in my body, I am itchy in certain areas, tired, more headaches, more mucus production, and brain fog.

Since Sharron put me on some supplements to combat the candida, I have been feeling really good! Like almost back to normal energy good!

I still crave breads and thought if I eat a gluten free bread every now and again, I’d be ok. WRONG! The one slice ended up being 4 slices (because it tastes good!). That was on Tuesday. Yesterday I paid for it by feeling really sick.

I think I can call these accidental experiments. I get a craving, I feed that craving, I feel sick after, I learned not to eat that food or I’ll feel sick.

So, what to eat………This is breakfast time for me as I’m writing and I have a few “go to’s”:

  • Oatmeal bake/slow cooker (recipe in one of last week’s posts)
  • Roasted Sweet Potatoes and Eggs (recipe at the end of this blog)
  • Apple and Peanut Butter (Just Peanuts for ingredients)
  • Chia Seed Pudding (in one of last week’s posts)

I choose from one of those for breakfast and usually have a couple of them ready in the fridge to eat when I need it. I also use the apple and Peanut Butter or Chia seed pudding for a snack if I need it.

Not the best photo I’ve taken! Sweet Potato and fried egg (over easy) breakfast. Yummy!!

Roasted Sweet Potatoes:

  • Diced Sweet Potatoes
  • 1-2 T. Olive oil or Coconut Oil
  • 1/2 t. salt

Heat oven to 350 degrees. Line a cookie sheet with foil. I dice the sweet potatoes into about 1/2″ pieces and put them right on the lined cookie sheet. Sprinkle the oil and salt over the potatoes and toss until all is coated evenly with the oil and salt.

Place in oven for about 60 min or until to desired doneness.

My daughter and I like them when they are a bit caramelized and slightly brown on the bottom. This brings out the sweetness more.

The bigger the dice, the longer it will take to cook them. My daughter and I love to watch WORST COOKS IN AMERICA and Ann Burrell. She would not like the inconsistent knife cuts!!! My knife skills are a work in progress!

If you try any of my recipes, please tell me how they turn out!

Have a wonderful day and thank you for reading my blog!

Healthy lifestyle, Uncategorized

Sugar, Sugar……

Oh My! What do I know about sugar……a lot! It’s a big topic. I will share with you as much as I know to help you make better choices.

The little wonderful sweet white granules we know as sugar is in many processed foods we consume every day. Salad dressings, tomato sauce, cereals, muffins, breads, and mayonnaise to list a few items. I have learned to read not only the nutrition facts, but the ingredients as well.

Sugar is also disguised under many different names and forms. I don’t know all of them, but here’s a few: dextrose, fructose, lactose, glucose, cane sugar, brown sugar, coconut sugar, honey, corn syrup, turbinado, agave, brown rice syrup, maple syrup, molasses……….and many many more! Plus there are the replacement natural and artificial sweeteners (like stevia, splenda, etc.)

Most of these have an effect of spiking the blood sugar in our body and then crashing. If the sugar energy is not used up right away, it gets stored as fat on the body. Some of the sugars are better like coconut sugar. It does not spike that sugar level as much. The artificial sweeteners come with some side effects for me like headaches or I just don’t like them.

That’s the stuff I have read and been told. Now, let me tell you about my relationship with sugar.

Sugar and I have had a love, hate relationship. It comforts me when I am stressed; keeps me company when I am bored; and help me brighten my day when I’m sad or angry. Yes, that through all of the cookies, muffins, cupcakes, puddings, etc. that I consumed during these emotional times. It also continued to give me more and more cravings for it( like a drug ), that I needed a “sugar fix”. I remember a time that I was trying very hard to eliminate the sugar from my diet and it was a stressful time in my life, I was feeling shaky (like a withdrawal). As soon as I gave in and ate a cookie, my shaking subsided and I was much more calm. Weird, I know!!!! This leads me to believe some of the talk about sugar being addictive.

I want to mention that I have an A1C of 6.1, which is close to being a type 2 diabetic. That disease runs very strong in my family and comes with many other serious complications. I won’t get into talking about diabetes, because I’m not a medical person. I worked at American Diabetes association for 3 years and have witnessed my family members with diabetes and know a lot about it to be able to tell you that it is one nasty disease that you cannot see.

Many years ago, I gave up all of the artificial sweeteners. More recently, I limited my sweeteners to coconut sugar and stevia. These I’ve been told will keep my blood sugar steady. Keeping my blood sugar steady will also keep my energy steady without causing tiredness.

I did that for about 8 weeks and I have narrowed down that my stomach pain/reflux is still being effected by the coconut sugar. So, most of my “sugar” sources have been eliminated at least for now. If I want to bake and cook, and that is the only way that I can control what I’m consuming……what kind of sugar/sweetener can I add to my foods?

With all of the “out of the normal” cooking I have done in the past decades, I have discovered that my sweeteners come from bananas, prunes, dates, raisins. Here’s the basic way I use them:

  • Bananas – Mash or put them in a blender to mash them and make them smooth. When substituting them for a gradual sugar, remember that this is a “liquid” form now and the other liquid has to be reduced.
  • Dates, Raisins, Prunes -They are dried and most of the moisture is gone from them. I would put a bunch in hot water to steep for a bit (like I would tea) until they are plump and soft. Then blend them til smooth by using a blender.

I am not sure of the specifics yet. I am still in the playing with recipes stage to see what works and what doesn’t.

I want to share with you a breakfast recipe that I have been using and love:

Baked or Slow Cooker Oatmeal

  • 2 cups steel cut oats
  • 6 cups water
  • 2 cups Almond Milk (unsweetened)
  • 1-2 T. Cinnamon
  • 1 T. Vanilla
  • 2 T. Butter (I like Earth Balance)
  • 1/4 cup Coconut Sugar (next time I’m gonna try 2 Bananas or 1/4 cup of date puree)
  • 3-4 cups Fruit diced (apples, peaches, berries)

Put all of the ingredients into a large corning ware dish or the slow cooker and give it a stir to mix together.

To bake: Place corning ware dish in oven at 350 degrees for 1 to 1-1/2 hours. I make this early in the morning when I wake and it’s ready when everyone is ready for breakfast.

For the Slow Cooker: Set slow cooker on low for about 6-8 hours. This is great to make before I go to bed and I wake up to the house smelling wonderful and have a nice hot breakfast all ready for me! It’s like having elves in my kitchen!!

This is uncooked. It’s a highly requested breakfast in my house!

Tell me how you like this recipe! Have a wonderful day!

Featured, Uncategorized

Gluten Free

I have learned that Gluten, Sugar, and Dairy are in many of the processed foods we eat. I have to be a detective because these foods come in all types of forms!

When I was growing up, my mother taught me how to make bread. One of the tasks is to “knead” the dough. This process encourages the gluten to develop and make it stretch. Gluten I found out later is a protein in wheat flour (all purpose flour as well) that I cannot tolerate. Gluten can be found in Rye, Barley, Wheat.

Wheat is in a lot of processed foods and can be hidden with the term “Modified Starch” for one example.

Which leads me to another topic: Modified Starch can be many things like wheat, corn, tapioca, etc. My definition of starch is that all the nutrients have been stripped away and only the part that turns into sugar in my body remains. I have learned that sugar/carbs will give me a short burst of energy and then I crash and feel tired. If I don’t use those sugar/carbs, they will be stored as fat on my body. I need that like I need a hole in my head! So, any of those “Gluten Free” processed foods are mainly made of starch and not good for my body.

I eliminated all starches and glutens, and feeling a little better. Next step…..

art quilt, For Fun, Uncategorized


We are all in the same boat with this novel virus. Today, my emotions are getting the best of me. I want to share with you how I handle emotional days. (Not that I’m an expert)

To date I have made about 600 masks. Some are donated and some are sold. Some of you have donated extra money which I have contributed to Buffalo Resilience ($380).

As I work on the masks, I am praying for the health of the people who will be wearing them, all of the essential employees, first responders, and any people who have contracted the virus. These are heavy days for all of us.

So, I find my happiness comes from my art quilting. I am making little art pieces (which are for sale). Today I’m going to continue on a piece to help me get focused again.


I have to find about one hour per day to do my art which will bring me peace. Some days it may be half of the day or all day just to give myself some peace and happiness.❤️

If you find that you are struggling emotionally in these times, do something that makes you happy for a portion of the day! Please share with me what makes you happy!


Above are a couple of art pieces I have done. Please contact me if you would like to purchase them.

Until next time, stay safe and healthy.



Paper piecing

Just starting a new project from my list. I designed a table runner and I’m working on it so I can teach it. I guess I need multiple projects to keep my mind engaged!

The beginning!

Just started it within the past 5 minutes!! Not much to see right now.

I’m still working on masks at about 20 per day. The art that I have been doing will be periodically and/or when I get another idea to thread sketch.

Keep safe and healthy, and as always, thank you for reading my blog!!

art quilt, memory quilt, Uncategorized

Time to Re-Focus!!

I am sew embarrassed that I have two wedding gifts from 2 years ago that I have not completed.  Sew, for the next few weeks, I am going to complete these gifts and give them!  This is going to give me a good focus on the work I have to do now.  I just started painting the fabric.  I am planning on finishing this by the end of this week, and I can give it to the happy couple (my cousin). The photo in the middle is the quilt at the end of the painting stage.  The original photo is on the far right.  Next step is to quilt it and frame it.


The other part of this is that my work area is totally messy.  I am focusing on re-organizing this space to get ready for a litany of projects I have to complete by the end of the year.

Since my teaching experience at AQS in April, I have decided to focus on teaching and competition quilts; andI will of course take any commissioned quilt work that comes along.  This allows me to have a very specific focus that I could market and expand on!

Thank you for reading this post!  I would love to read your comments!


Event, Uncategorized

Wedding Is Over……What’s Next?

The wedding is over and their lives together has just begun! It was a beautiful, fun day with lots of sun and heat.

Now that all the fun is over, it’s time for me to work on my quilting again. I am developing a few new classes that include:

  • Framing Small Quilts – 3hour and Lecture classes
  • Mixing Colors with Paint – 3hour and Lecture Classes
  • Free Motion without Marking

Keep an eye on my Teaching page for these to be available.

Thank you!



Wedding Preparations!!!

All the alterations are done! WooHoo!!! Had one bridesmaid gown, groomsmen pant suit, and the bridal gown alter. Pictures will be shown after the wedding on July 4th. I don’t want my son, Joe to see the gown.

Joe and Sarah’s wedding quilt

Today, Mike and I tested out hanging the quilt on our family room wall. On the table in front will have a strip of fabric on it for the guests can write a little note to the couple. After the wedding, I will incorporate that strip in the backing of the quilt. My goal is to have the quilt totally quilted and complete for Christmas.

Now that all the sewing is done, it’s time me to clean the house.😳😝

Thank you for reading my blog! Have a wonderful day!❤️


Dedication to my Dad

A year ago today, my Dad passed from this world to heaven. So, as you can imagine, this is a very emotional time for me and my family as we reminisce about his life and just miss him terribly.

My first competition art quilt named FACE TO FACE. It captures a moment in time of my Dad and our dog Sable. They are both enjoying each other’s company now.

My Dad was an amazing man with his creativeness, ingenuity, and humbleness. He had his own upholstery business for many years. He taught me how to work hard when you have your own business. Even though I did not like it, I had the pleasure of working in his shop as a teenager, going to customers homes to deliver their furniture, experienced how Dad would talk to the customers about how he was going to recover their fabric, and got my hands dirty with ripping fabric off the furniture (not an easy job). Later on, he moved me to sewing the welt that would go on the furniture. This was my first experience with using his industrial sewing machine that had a very thick needle (size 21) and sews extremely fast. I did have domestic sewing machine experience, but this was a different animal (machine actually). He was a tough teacher… I remember thinking he was disappointed in my with my crooked stitching lines and nothing was even. At this point I was in my 20s and was helping him for experience and to help him with some jobs.

Later, when I had my own alteration business, he would help me with sewing some heavy items like replacing a zipper in a leather coat. My domestic sewing machine would not go through it. I got use to using his machine. Now, I have his machine and use it still when I have heavy sewing work to do.

Many years ago, my parents gave my husband and I two of those anti-gravity chairs that have cushions on them. Over the years of use, the fabric deteriorated, tore, faded, and went unused. Probably about 4 years ago, my dad said that he would help me re-upholster them and had fabric for them that reminded me of a bubble bee. Of course, time when by and I never made the time to do that with him.

About two weeks ago, I decided that I wanted to make the time this year to re-cover our chairs. I figured I would use the next few Sundays to accomplish this task. Dad said that it is not hard to do, so I was confident to do this. Plus, I had my husband to do some of the disassembling parts of the frame to take the cushions out. Last week I started with ripping the fabric to create the patterns, cutting the fabric, and starting to sew the pieces together.

Me using my Dad’s machine to recover my chair.

This past Sunday, I finished one chair. Through this time, I was talking to him as if he was standing over my shoulder. I was having difficulty with his machine and after about one hour discovered that it was the way the bobbin was wound. This was after I oiled the hook of the machine, brushed out the feed dogs, cursed at it a million times. My go to was saying to Dad, “How did you do this?” or “You said this was easy!!”

As I was finishing one of the chairs today, I was realizing that I was using not only all of the knowledge that he taught me as well as his sewing machine and tools. I knew he was with me still teaching me how to get through the tricky parts of doing this like shoving the fabric covered foam to stitch a securing or fold stitch. It was not easy. Mike had to hold my rolling chair so I could force the foam through the arm of the sewing machine and reach the foot pedal at the same time to make the machine sew. Dad recovered his same chair all by himself. When I finished, I had a real emotional moment.

The chair all finished!! Next week the second chair!!

Dad, I am sew blessed that you were able to be in my life and that you took the time to teach me life skills as well as your trade. Love you very much and miss you a ton.


Memory Quilt in process

I have the honor of creating a memory quilt for a special person I know. She wanted me to create a quilt using two photos from her sister’s wedding including a family tree. She also showed me photos of what she was thinking.

So I came up with doing an embroidered border with the photos on either side of the family tree that I’m painting. This project is not complete yet, but I am sharing with you my process.

Cutting out the embroidered designs

Every piece is cut out and now I’m painting the family tree on the yellow fabric.

The tree is still not complete. It still looks like a tree in winter right now! Leaves will be put on soon and the names will be painted. Still lots of work to do, but I’m enjoying the process!

Peace –