Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Things going on....

Looks like my blog has been a bit quiet :-)  All is well, mostly.  We've just been trying to catch up on schooling that we got behind on weeks ago.  We will be ready to go into our second semester as planned, which is after the new year.

We participated in our annual tradition of Christmas light viewing.  I have to remember to prepare a bit ahead of time.  Our little trip wouldn't be complete without hot chocolate, and this year I made two versions.  One GAPS legal, the other, not so much.  No worries, I plan on getting strict with GAPS after the new year.  Making the cocoa took a bit longer than anticipated, and we got a late start.  The baby only saw two places before he conked out for the night.  We know of a few neighborhoods that have a bunch of houses that really deck the halls!  Ha, ha!  Everywhere that we drove and saw any lights at all the kids would yell out, "X-MAS!!!"  We determined that saying X-Mas was even more accurate than, "Christmas".  I am sure you would like to hear why :-)  You see the word for Christ in the ancient Greek is, Xristos (pronounced 'hree-stos'), thus X-mas is OK!  Ahem...

We all had a wonderful time.  The girls were singing Christmas hymns all along the way (you know, when they were not yelling, "X-MAS!!!")  We were looking forward to seeing one house in particular, but by the time we got there they had turned their lights off.  Boo hoo.  But it was made up for in another house who had the entire front of their house outlined along every edge.  All of the lights blinked along to Christmas music that they had playing. 

We arrived home with all the boys sleeping. 

Our tradition of doing the Jesse tree continues as well.  I originally made the ornaments with small snaps on the back, to be fastened onto a large felt piece that had the other half of the snap on it.  Six years later and quite a few of the snaps have broken.  I am sure a large part of that is due to the extremes in temperature that the disks reside in (up in the attic) for most of the year.  I'm rethinking of how best to remedy the situation.  I really love the felt disks that I made, so I don't want to remake the whole lot.  I may take off the snaps and add little hooks on them.  The kind you may find on delicate clothing.

We've had some round of sickness going around in the house.  Some viral upper respiratory gunk.  For the most part it's been a non issue.  Poor Moira though, her throat is severely swollen, and it makes it feel as if she can not breathe.  Motirn has helped with that.  In the mean time I am giving her all the herbals I can think of.  I would much prefer homeopathy, but there isn't enough for me to go on to pick the right remedy.  I've been telling them this was all due to the sugar they indulged in last week :-)  Yes, I am evil.  (Insert evil laugh)

On top of that two amazing things have come about here on the homestead.  One far superior than the other, but amazing non the less.  I'll share the not so superior one now, the other deserves a post of it's own.

Ready for it? 

Whipped topping.

I can hear most of you say, "But Kerri, whipped topping is NOT gaps legal."  You would be correct.  But this type of whipped topping is gaps legal, and I believe I wrote briefly about it when I talked about Thanksgiving.  This is whipped coconut cream.  And it is divine.  I made it for our gaps legal apple crisp on Thanksgiving.  The consensus went something like this: "Mom, WHAT is this? (not said in a giddy, happy, pleasant voice) "This is NOT whipped topping!"  "Yuck!"  "Why did you make this?"  It seems that I was the only one who liked the coconut whipped topping. That was fine by me, as that would leave all the left overs (and there were lots) for me :-) But you see, something mysterious happened.  Leaving the whipped coconut cream in the fridge overnight made it taste even better the following day!  Since it is our custom to put up our Christmas tree the day after Thanksgiving, and it is also our custom to do so with a cup of hot cocoa at our side....well that gave me a good reason to pull the cream back out. I put some in my hot cocoa.  Oh. My. Goodness. It was super duper yummy.  The children, seeing that I was thoroughly enjoying my cocoa, asked to try some.  Well, wouldn't you know, before I could have known what had happened, my 'stockpile' of leftover whipped coconut cream was reduced to a spoonful!  Apparently they thought it tasted much better the day after as well.

With one spoonful left I wanted to put it to good use.  So I decided to make up some chocolate yogurt and top it with the cream.  Super duper yummo!!!!

There were two obstacles facing me when I was trying to jump back into gaps.  The first was the amount of cooking and planning that goes into it.  The other was the idea of being on such a limited diet.  Due to limited time and funds, we kept eating the same few handful of meals, day after day, week after week.  Let's just say it was getting old.  Don't get me wrong, there are plenty of recipes out there.  But we don't have the means for exotic type ingredients, or the time to cook something "fancy".  So I made it my mission to try to find some small, easy, extras that would enhance our gaps experience.  I have to say that this whipped coconut cream fit the bill.  This time around I also found some suitable bacon that we use very sparingly in our salad or scrambled eggs.  Those two things, though on the expensive side, when used sparingly give that extra 'something' to our food.

The next amazing thing is much more serious, in a good way!  I'll share that next time.

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