Another 20 Reasons I Love Dayton, OH

Almost two years ago, I published my original “40 Reasons I Love Dayton, OH” list. If you haven’t read that one yet, check it out first; otherwise, you’ll be wondering why obvious reasons like low cost-of-living, the Air Force Museum, and exceptional area parks are absent from this list. Now, though, I’ve had another couple years to get to know the Dayton area better and I am... read more

Homemade Chocolate (Vegan, Paleo, Soy-Free)

Yes–it’s ready at last! My homemade chocolate recipe that is completely free of dairy, soy, nuts, honey, gluten, GMOs, seaweed, aardvarks, aliens….well, you get the picture. This stuff is rich, dark chocolate goodness that tastes AMAZING without any of the major allergens and it packs a superfood punch! My chocolate gains its sweetness from pure maple syrup and lucuma... read more

Icicle Watercolor Painting

  It’s been chilly and snowy lately and I noticed a bunch of icicles hanging from the eaves. The girls desperately wanted to play with them, but I didn’t want them licking them or stabbing each other, so I surveyed my craft area and tried to figure out what we could do with them. WATERCOLORS!!! No water required, because the... read more

Vegan Orange Creamsicle Pops

It snowed today and I made the kids ice pops–is that totally bizarre? I mean, I know a lot of moms do the snow ice cream thing, but other than that, aren’t ice pops a hot-day-in-July thing? Oh well. My sis gave me these cool silicone ice pop molds for Christmas and the kids love this simple creamsicle recipe, so I couldn’t resist. Just 4 (or even 3) ingredients and... read more

Product Review: The Lammily Doll

Oh, Lammily. I wanted to like you so badly. But, unfortunately, you are probably doomed to a life at the bottom of the doll bin since neither I, nor my daughters, want to play with you. If you haven’t heard of Lammily, she is the latest doll to challenge the “Barbie” scene. The Lammily fashion doll has been manufactured using standard human body proportions–an average bust, waist,... read more

Easy Perler Bead Christmas Ornaments

I recently saw this pin for “Perler Ornaments” and knew I had to try them out because I have this ridiculously huge tub of Perler beads from IKEA. This is an ornament craft that is REALLY fast, REALLY easy, and kids enjoy, so I say it’s a win all around. Granted, they may not be as cute as salt dough ornaments, or smell as nice as the applesauce and cinnamon ones, but... read more

I Have Hashimoto’s Thyroiditis. Now What?

It’s been a difficult year for me. I spent the first half of it feeling terrible. Depressed. Crying. Gaining weight despite my best workout efforts. A zombie-like brain fog coated my thoughts and I was so exhausted I had to take a nap mid-day to make it. And then my doctor, after hearing my woes and testing my thyroid (at my insistence, because I have a strong family history of... read more

Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies, Gluten-Free and Dairy-Free

This recipe is so fast and so simple–just six ingredients and no complicated steps or clean-up. Although they aren’t as healthy as some of my other cookie recipes–they do have quite a bit of fat from the almond butter and they do have coconut sugar–they are still “healthier” than a standard cookie. They are higher in protein and have a lower glycemic... read more

Sweet Potato Salsa Soup

I got a new cookbook when we went gluten-free. It’s called Against All Grain, by Danielle Walker, and as of now, it has nearly 1,900 5-star reviews on Amazon, so that speaks volumes. I’m so impressed by not only her recipes, but Ms. Walker also took every photo in the book! Anyway, I’ve tried a couple recipes so far and been pleased. This recipe is my adaptation of her... read more

Basic Vegetable Soup

I was craving a simple vegetable soup…something to use up all the potatoes, carrots, and tomatoes that we keep buying because we forget we have a surplus. I stumbled on this recipe from Alton Brown, and despite the lack of spices, decided to adapt it to fit our family’s tastes. I was initially put off by the lack of spices–my favorite soup, Sweet Potato and Lentil, has... read more

Nutty Breakfast Bites (Gluten-, Peanut-, Dairy-Free)

We’ve gone gluten-free in our house. I’m trying to help manage suspected Hashimoto’s by eliminating wheat, barley, rye, and switching to gluten-free oats and tamari (vs soy sauce), and so far it’s made a big difference in how I feel. No more brain fog. No more required mid-day nap. And the shrinking of my waistline (2 inches in just one week) is a bonus too. If... read more

Make a Kid Quote Book Using Shutterfly

A couple years ago, I was excited to find a 50% off sale on a fabulous children’s quote book through a company called Paper Coterie. Part photo album, part journal, the spiral-bound volume was the perfect place to record all those giggle-worthy things my young daughter said. The front cover has thick plastic covering the image and the inner pages are very thick paper. I’ve enjoyed using it to... read more

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