SSL’S Gluten-free Top Picks of the Week: Meat and Cheese

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Hey,y’all! Welcome back to Sweet Sorghum Living. Today on the blog, we are chatting about SSL’s top gluten-free picks of the week. All about meat and cheese. Now, I’m not talking about fresh meat…or going to the butcher shop…because I really don’t like handling raw meat…or cooking. We are discussing the basics like bacon, ham, and American cheese. No fancy, schmancy recipes here *smile*

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Bacon. It’s a food group. A staple item. A legend. But finding a gluten-free version is a bit tricky. I am not a trusting person. And just because a product doesn’t list a gluten culprit doesn’t mean it is sans gluten. I am a cautious person. So, I read labels. I read labels on items that clearly have GLUTEN-FREE printed on them. One can never be too careful nowadays.

Any who…Smithfield has an all-natural, uncured bacon that is made with sea salt and has no MSG or gluten.

This bacon is perfect for a BLT…I totally recommend Udi’s bread and fresh produce from local farmers *smile*

I discovered this bacon on a recent and rare trip to Walmart. I was needing a few miscellaneous items that I can only find there because our Target in Johnson City is rather small and doesn’t contain a fully stocked market. Oh, it makes me miss Target in Trussville and Hoover. I digress.

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Turkey bacon. It will never have the fame of its cousin. It won’t have festivals dedicated to it. But I personally like it. And I buy it more than “real” bacon because it has less calories and fat…and I’m not getting any younger and the odds of my starting a serious exercise regimen is slim to none. So, I eat turkey bacon as a way to stay fit. It makes perfect sense…

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Plainville makes one of the best turkey bacon…turkey bacons?? Is there a plural to bacon? I guess it always needs a friend like “I bought two packages of turkey bacon.” or “Five slices of bacon is really a serving.” Anyway…I’m all over the place today.

Back to turkey bacon…Plainville has a delicious, uncured turkey bacon that contains no gluten or casein. According to the package and some research I did, “Plainville’s turkeys are humanely raised on family-owned farms in a stress-free environment. They are never, ever administered antibiotics and are fed a 100% vegetarian diet free of any animal by-products.”

I get mine at Earth Fare in Johnson City.  It’s great cooked, chopped, and tossed in a gluten-free pasta salad. Great on ham sandwiches and by itself as a snack.

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I love this ham. So much so, that I bought like 8 packages a couple of days ago because Earth Fare had it on sale. No, I will not be freezing these packages. There’s no need because the little family and I love ham and cheese sandwiches. Hot ones…cold ones. Is there anything better for lunch?

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Udderly my favorite cheese ever. It is buttery…creamy…yummy. Once you experience Andrew & Everett cheeses, you will never go back to the big brands. It is amazing!

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Y’all know I am a huge fan of pizza. It’s an easy dinner, and leftover slices are perfect for breakfast. When making my own gluten-free pizza, I use Applegate Uncured Pepperoni. These slices are also great by themselves as a snack or baked in the oven for “pepperoni chips”–I’ve no idea how long I bake them. I just place them on a cookie sheet and bake on 350 degrees until they begin to curl up and look crispy. *smile*

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Fiorucci is my go-to salame for pizza and snack meat trays. It’s gluten-free and 100% natural. Which is sad that we have to look for and demand 100% natural foods. When a long time ago, food was all natural. Chemicals help us preserve food for extended periods and create more food faster…blah…blah. Personally, I like my meat 100% natural and not full of antibiotics and ingredients that I can’t pronounce without using my “Hooked on Phonics”…

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Thanks for sitting a spell with me today as we toured my meat and cheese drawer. Now, I’m off to make a BLT and dine on the front porch.

SSL’S Gluten-free Top Picks of the Week: Pick-me-up Snacks

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Hey, y’all! Welcome back to Sweet Sorghum Living. Today on the blog, we are chatting about SSL’s top gluten-free picks of the week–which are perfect pick-me-ups for the mid-afternoon slumps. So, go grab a good cup of coffee and sit a spell with me *smile*

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I loved Fig Newtons as a kid. Loved them. It was a fun and delicious snack. It was a cookie and a tiny cake.

But then along came Celiac Disease,  and it robbed me of one of my favorite snacks. It took a lot away from me, but I’m not here to complain…I’m here to celebrate and announce that Pamela’s makes a super delicious, extra large, Fig Newton substitute…really a replacement because the “Figgies & Jammies” are incredible…fantastical + fun to say! Figgies & Jammies…Figgies & Jammies!

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I wanted to include a photo that showed the nutritional information and ingredients of the “Mission Fig Figgies & Jammies”–bless, I get so frustrated reading labels in the grocery store. Always apologizing for being in the way…digging in my purse for my reading glasses…trying to remember if that’s the gluten-free crackers the hubby eats. The hubby doesn’t have any dietary restrictions, but he’s super sweet to follow all of mine *smile*

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The next pick-me-up snack is the 100% freeze-dried pineapple “Crispy Fruit” by “Crispy Green”–which also offers apple, Asian pear, banana,  cantaloupe,  and mango. I’ve only tried the pineapple, but cantaloupe is next on my list. I will let y’all know how that venture turns out.

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At first, I was hesitant about trying freeze-dried fruit…big fan of the dehydrated ones…but freeze-dried? I admit the visual appeal is not there, and the texture is a bit odd…but…the taste is divine…like fresh pineapple…a bit of a crunch…packed with tons of fresh flavor. Fresh…crunchy…pineapple!

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Check out the ingredients list. Just one. Pineapple!  *big smile* Plus, there are only 9g of carbohydrates and 35 calories in the individual snack pack. Just toss one in your purse or briefcase, and you are set for the 3:00 p.m. slump.

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I never liked to eat Pop-Tarts for breakfast…not enough substance to get me through until lunch. However,  Pop-Tarts were great for afternoon snacking. Call me crazy–but I liked mine straight out of the package. No toaster required. Occasionally,  I’d put one in the microwave for a few seconds. Well, along came Celiac…and out went the Pop-Tarts…and in came glutino toaster pastries…apple cinnamon to be exact!

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I admit this isn’t the healthiest snack, but who cares! Glutino toaster pastries  taste great + eating one makes me feel like a kid again. Sometimes, it is good to be bad *wink*

As I’ve stated before, I’m no food expert.  Not a food photographer.  Not a cook. Please don’t come over expecting fancy meals that I found on Pinterest.  There will be no cookies that look like penguins or veggies shaped like flowers. But, I will have a great pot of coffee and delicious snacks that are gluten-free…and we can sit a spell, chat, and drink coffee while the hubby cooks *wink*

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Now, I must get back to my painting project. Stay tuned to find out which rooms are being brightened with color.

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Thanks for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about gluten-free, pick-me-up snacks.

P.S. Remember what doesn’t bother me might bother you. Be careful when trying new foods.

SSL Gluten-free Top Picks of the Week: Junk Food

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Hey, y’all! Welcome back to Sweet Sorghum Living.  Today on the blog, we are chatting about SSL’s top gluten-free picks of the week,  which are all comfort foods…aka junk foods. Now, go grab a good cup of coffee or nice glass of wine and sit a spell with me.

I’m not a foodie, food critic, or food photographer. I’m also not a chef or even a cook, for that matter…and I’ve no patience or time for complex recipes. I don’t own a Crock-Pot. And to be perfectly honest, I bought my Le Creuset because it was pretty.

I look for easy, healthy, and delicious…and through lots of trial and error, I’ve found some great gluten-free items that don’t send my blood sugars into orbit.

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Tonight for dinner, I prepared a yummy gluten-free, Hawaiian BBQ pizza using an Against the Grain crust, Weber’s Original BBQ Sauce, fresh pineapple chunks from Earth Fare, gluten-free cheese, and smoked chicken that the hubby prepared on the Big Green Egg.

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It took less than five minutes to prepare and less than twenty minutes to cook. Just to make sure we got some veggies with our junk food delight,  I made a simple side salad of baby spinach, tomato, shredded carrots, and bean sprouts tossed in Annie’s Naturals Artichoke Parmesan dressing–which is gluten free and contains no synthetic preservatives.

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Sometimes, I just want something frozen that allows me to be a kid for a few moments. My go-to place is Menchie’s in Johnson City. Today,  I had the Heath Bar swirled with the Nutty Hazelnut. A treat that’s gluten-free and good for me…that’s a win!

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I love chocolate and have for a long time…I’m often scolded for eating it because some people believe that Type 1 diabetics should not eat sweets…some believe that I gave myself diabetes by eating sugar…but I can’t change their beliefs…so I just smile and nod…and buy more chocolate bars! *smile*

What I love about Alter Eco bars–besides their deliciousness–is their amazing story. Plus, they are soy free, gluten free, no GMO, no artificial flavors, no emulsifiers, organically grown, AND fairly traded. So, to all my critics eating Little Debbie snack cakes and judging me for being a chocolate-eating diabetic…poo on you! *wink*

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Keep in mind that what doesn’t bother me might bother you…so if you have a gluten intolerance or Celiac Disease…be careful when trying new foods.

Thanks for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about yummy snacks and a quick dinner.  Now, I’m off to get my daily dose of exercise with Mattie. *smile*

SSL’s Top Gluten-free Picks

 

wpid-20140722_144856.jpgHey, y’all! Welcome back to Sweet Sorghum Living.  Today on the blog we are chatting about SSL’s top gluten-free picks of the week. So let’s grab a good cup of coffee and sit a spell while we chat about delicious foods.

The VIP and I visited Cakes in a Cup in Johnson City, Tennessee in search of gluten-free cupcakes that were moist and delicious.  Believe me–we have had our share of not-so-edible GF baked goods…so we went knowing that it could be a flop…but it wasn’t!

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I had the Chocolate Lava Cheesecake + Diet Dr. Pepper, and Abby feasted on Chocolate + Diet Pepsi. We were pleasantly surprised with not only the moistness of the little cakes,  but also the rich chocolate flavor. Two thumbs up and five stars!!

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It was a busy day of running errands and searching for gluten-free top picks. It was so much fun having Abby along to help me sample and critic.

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One of my favorite places to shop. I love the atmosphere, friendly service, and top-notch produce.

After our cupcake break, we ventured to Walmart because I needed lancets…because I’ve been in a struggle with my insurance company’s prescription provider…long story…but I’m not seeing where Express Scripts has saved me time…made me cry…yes…stressed me beyond my limits…yes…I digress.

Back to eating healthy and delicious 🙂

After surviving Walmart, we ventured to a happy place–The Fresh Market–which has a nice selection of gluten-free items + the prettiest fresh flowers.

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Breakfast of Champions. Warning: This cereal is so addictive and so yummy that the hubby requests it!

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Chips fromThe Fresh Market + Hummus from Earth Fare = yummy for the tummy snacks that are good for us!

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Super easy dinner–just add a side salad. Now, this is a bit spicy and will make you miss NOLA.

Thanks for sitting a spell with me today as we chatted about yummy snacks and an easy dinner–all sans gluten. As a person with Celiac these above items do not bother me, but they might bother you. I’m no expert…I’m just trying my best to eat healthy and delicious all while living with Celiac Disease and Type 1 Diabetes.

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Another reason to shop at The Fresh Market in Johnson City–the gorgeous view 🙂

 

Thinking Outside the Box Because I Hate Propping Things Against Walls

Master Bedroom Curtain and Curtain Rod

Master Bedroom Curtain and Curtain Rod–stay tuned for a master bedroom reveal! Be sure to follow me on social media for sneak peeks 🙂

Hey, y’all! Welcome to Sweet Sorghum Living! If this is your first time visiting, let me explain quickly what we do here. It’s simple. Go grab a good cup of coffee or a nice glass of wine, sit a spell with me, and enjoy my randomness–everything from home renovation projects to chats about living with type 1 diabetes and Celiac. That’s all there is to it. Now, let’s get to chatting about thinking outside the box–using things for other than their intended purposes.

My new house has a lot of big windows, which I absolutely love; however, I am not much of a curtain girl–but my power bill says that I need to be. So, I got curtains for the bedrooms upstairs…hoping that will satisfy the hubby’s need for privacy and lower the power bill. Long story short. After my curtain hanging party, I had extra curtain rod brackets…I am thinking that this is normal when one orders those really long rods…the rods seem perfectly secure, and the curtains are not sagging…so, I am going to say that it is normal to have leftovers.

Now, I am a saver of the junk…and I cannot throw away perfectly good items…so, this is what I decided to do with the extra curtain rod brackets.

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Thankfully, I have a handy hubby who knows how to take my excited chatter and turn it into my vision…and that is what he did. The hubby stopped his project to come help me with mine…and the end result was double fabulous because I used the extra curtain rod brackets AND my ironing board was no longer propped against the wall. Now, I just have to decide what color to paint the laundry room and get the hubby to hang an old ladder–but that is a story for another day.

Think outside the box

A few weeks ago, I bought a shower caddy thinking that it would be perfect for my shower…nope…it was not. Why not return it? Well, I not only threw away the receipt, but I also threw away all the packaging that came with it. Against everything in me, I propped it against the wall in the master bath because I really did not want to make a trip to the basement.

Yesterday, I was sorting through the chaos in my art studio when I had the best idea ever…well, all my great ideas are the best ideas ever…where was I? Oh, yes! My great idea for the shower caddy…I needed a place for bigger paints and such, and the shower caddy was perfect for storing those items. It fit just right in a tiny, awkward space…right behind my podium (which I must tell y’all the story behind my podium). It was a win. The shower caddy has a home, nothing is propping on my walls in the master bath, my painting space is better organized, and I did not waste $14.78.

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Thanks so much for sitting a spell with me today as we looked at ways to use things for other than their intended purposes. Now I am off to tackle the chaos in one of my guest rooms…but before I get too involved with that, I am going on a Starbucks run *smile*

tackle this mess

I’ve Got My Running Shoes On

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I’ve got my running shoes on and my Camelback packed, and I am ready to stomp out my ridiculously out-of-control blood sugars. Enough is enough.

I don’t talk much about my Type 1 diabetes because I don’t like to admit that I have a weakness…and because I don’t participate in pity parties…and I do not like to hear “Bless your heart, my grandmother died from that.” I always ask if the grandmother had Type 1…well, let’s just take a look at a dialogue to help explain why I don’t chat about having the sugar.

Well-Meaning Person: What is that?

Me: It is an insulin pump.

Well-Meaning Person: You got diabetes?

Me: Yes, I am a Type 1.

Well-Meaning Person: Is that the bad kind?

Me: All types of diabetes are bad.

Well-Meaning Person: My grandmother died from that.

Me: From Type 1 diabetes?

Well-Meaning Person: From diabetes. Her final days on this Earth were terrible. She was suffering from kidney failure. The dialysis wasn’t working anymore. Bless her heart. She had part of her leg amputated last June. She was a fighter though. Granny never let losing her eyesight bother her. I remember when the fluid started…

Me: *interrupting this lovely story* I am sorry to interrupt, but I just remembered that I have got to be somewhere.

1208780_10201791449978241_259121923_nTalking about any disease is tricky…getting the right information across to your audience is crucial. I am part of a “category”–each “item” in that “category” is different. I am not a doctor…nor do I play one on TV…so, how do I define my disease to those who do not have it…to those who do not understand….

I am weary from clarifying that one does not “outgrow” Type 1 diabetes.

I am weary from explaining that no diet, no particular form of exercise, no special pills, no special pink drink, no special herb concoction will cure me…will cure my Type 1 diabetes.

The reality is harsh.

There is no cure.

Admitting that to myself has not been easy.

Bless.

Please do not pity me.

ATTENTION PLEASE: This post is not to seek pity.

Even though there is no cure, there is hope. There is also a chance that I will die a horrible death…blind, without kidney function, and legless…

BUT…I am NOT going down without a fight. A SERIOUS FIGHT!!!

I am ready! Got my Nike running shoes, Camelbak, Mattie, and Ziva. I am taking back control...and no one will miss seeing me do it because I sporting BRIGHT :)

Nike running shoes–CHECK–Camelbak–CHECK–Mattie and Ziva–CHECK

So, I’ve got my running shoes on and my Camelbak packed because I will live to die another day. Bond. James Bond.

Stay tuned for future posts about the survival contents in my Camelbak and the progress on the home renovation–which has now turned into “Get This House Ready to Sell” mode…oh, yes…the Hathorns are about to be on the move again.

Thanks for sitting a spell with me today!

Chasidy