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Welcome Friends! Please be patient while I add more info. I have SO much to share with you. Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Southern Fresh Tomato Pie

Southern Fresh Tomato Pie

If you've never had Tomato Pie and you want to try something different, this is a great recipe. It would be wonderful as a side dish or even as a main meal. Some people add bacon to the top! My brother from Alabama gave me this recipe and it originally had oregano on top too, but I wasn't crazy about that. It called for fresh oregano, so maybe that would have been better than the dried oregano I used. This is great for breakfast too!

Ingredients

    • 1 All-Ready pie shell
    • 3- 4 ripe tomatoes, sliced
    •  1 onion, very thinly sliced
    • 3/4 cup mayonnaise
    • 1/3 cup sour cream
    • 1 cup mozzarella cheese, grated
    • 1/2  cup cheddar cheese, grated
    • 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
    • black pepper and salt to taste
    • 2 teaspoons fresh basil


    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
    2. Bake the pastry shell for 10 minutes or til browned.
    3. Slice onion and place in the bottom of pastry shell. Slice tomatoes and place evenly over onions. Add black pepper  and salt to taste.
    4. In a bowl, combine mozzarella, cheddar, parmesan, sour cream and mayonnaise. Spread this mixture evenly over tomatoes.
    5. Bake at 350 degrees F (175 degrees C) for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Garnish with fresh basil.

Fat Flush Post # 2 - Products from Trader Joe's for the Diet

If you don't have a Trader Joe's where you live, it is really worth looking for one in a nearby town. My Trader Joe's is about 20 minutes from me and I go there at least once every 2-3 weeks and it's well worth it.


Things I buy at Trader Joe's for the Fat Flush:

1. Flax Seeds - whole, roasted ($2.99 for a 16 oz bag). You can eat them whole (in salads and smoothies) or you can grind them in a coffee grinder, or buy them


already ground. I think they are fresher if I grind them myself, but I do buy the ones already ground too. When I went on the Fat Flush the first time, I didn't grind the seeds. I had no idea at the time that they are more nutritious and beneficial when they are ground, but they helped me lose weight eating them whole anyway. Of course, your teeth grind them up when you are eating them! Sometimes I grind them, but I still like to eat them whole. The roasted ones taste like a nut.

2. Ground Flax Seeds - ($2.99 for a 16 oz bag) I think this is the name on the Trader Joe's
brand, but you can also find it in a pkg called Flaxseed Meal by Bob's Red Mill. They have lots of non gluten flours such as coconut flour, almond flour, corn flour, potato flour, rice flour, tapioca flour and others. Big Lots even has a bunch of these flours.

3. Unsweetened 100% cranberry juice ($4.99 for 32 oz) You dilute it this way: 1 cup unsweetened juice in a half gallon

container, fill the rest with filtered water. You can add stevia or one of the other approved sweeteners. I use stevia. You will drink this during the day, but it's also to be used for your Long Life Cocktail you'll be drinking every morning when you first get up and right before going to bed.

4. Flax Oil - at TraderJoe's it's $8.99, but most other places it's $15-$20 (or more). It's important that this is in a dark container,

because it can go rancid. I
keep it in my refrigerator, but believe me, when I've had it too long it doesn't taste good. But that's only if I'm not on the diet and haven't used it for a while. When I'm on the FF and using it everyday, it doesn't go bad. You are supposed to use flax oil in your salads along with apple cider vinegar or fresh lemon juice.  (Flax seeds sprinkled on that too) but there are recipes for a viniagrette or other dressings in the book and on Pinterest. You can also put flax oil and flax seeds on your vegetables if you didn't eat a salad for the day. It's important to have at least 2 tablespoons of flax seeds daily and some flax oil. Flax oil and flax seeds are great in smoothies too! In fact, it may be a requirement.

5. Heart of Palms - This is something I put in my salads that I love. It comes in a can, and

you can also buy it at regular grocery stores, but it costs less at Trader Joe's.

6. Ezekiel Bread - this is the sprouted wheat bread I have been buying for about 19 yrs.


When I was tested in 1998 and found out I have a wheat and dairy intolerance, my Dr.told me I could use this instead of regular bread. But the last couple of years I have found out I'm sensitive to the gluten in wheat, and this bread is not gluten free. If you can eat it, though, most grocery stores and health food stores carry it frozen, but Trader Joe's has it fresh - not frozen. I've always kept it in my freezer since I don't use bread that often.

7. Stevia Extract - $9.99. This comes in a small bottle, but it takes just a tiny bit to

sweeten your beverage. The spoon that comes with it is probably less than 1/8th of a teaspoon. This is 100% pure organic stevia extract, and I've never seen this pure extract any place else. Most of the stevia you get in grocery stores contain fillers that are not good for you and are not allowed on the Fat Flush, with the exception of Sweet Leaf Stevia. At Trader Joe's it comes in a liquid ($6.99) as well as packets ($6.99) too. 
Of course, there are other things I buy at Trader Joe's, but these are the main things I buy for the Fat Flush, since you can find the best prices there.

Let me know if you have questions!

Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Best Diet on Earth! The Fat Flush - Post # 1

Find the 2016 book on Amazon or eBay
If you are looking for a diet that really works, this is it! I'm only saying this because I have been successful on it twice in my life, when nothing else worked. Read on.... 

You may have heard of Ann Louise Gittleman, the famous nutritionist who developed the Fat Flush Plan back around 1998. At one time she worked at the Mayo Clinic and also wrote a book in 1998 called Beyond Pritkin, where she first introduced her Fat Flush plan. People were saying her plan would not work because she was the one saying, "You need to eat fat to lose fat", at a time when everyone was going on the "fat free phase". But the problem was that people who went fat free actually gained weight! And the food tasted terrible. Now, doctors, researchers and dieters are all singing her praises, because years of research and study have proven her methods work! She came out with the book, The Fat Flush Plan in 2002, which has 3 phases. The first is the 2 week phase. You can choose to stay on that longer or go to phase 2. Then phase 3 is the Lifestyle plan for life.

This diet is based on cleansing toxins from our kidneys and liver, which is our fat burning machine. When we get rid of the toxins, by drinking cranberry juice, lemon water, using flax seeds and flax oil (important Omega 3's), eating the right foods, plus some supplements that help this process, we will help our toxin ladened liver become healthy again and help it to do what it's meant to do - burn fat. It's also about draining our Lymph system to make us feel much better, lose weight and lose cellulite, plus a ton of other benefits. She actually shows you what places on the body we can massage to help loosen  and drain our lymph system. Which is part of where she came up with the term "Fat Flush". You are actually draining fat from your body!  This is why the diet appealed to me. And, she suggests buying a rebounder (a mini tramp) to help drain this too. If you can't buy one, simple jumping jacks will do the trick!

Nothing you can do to control your weight is as important as keeping your liver healthy, according to Gittleman. If you are a human being living on this planet, you can't avoid the pollutants that get our liver all out of whack. (No matter how healthy you are or how healthy you eat). It's a fact. Some things that sabotage our liver and cause it to be sluggish from pollatants are:

1. Alcohol
2. Sugar
3. Trans fats
4. Caffeine
5. Inadequate fiber
6. Stress
7. A lack of sleep
8. Eating wheat and dairy
9. Household cleaners
10. Bacteria
11. Pollutants in the enviroment (1,000's of toxic chemicals we breathe, consume or touch in our environment such as pesticides, car exhaust, secondhand smoke, chemical food additives, and indoor pollutants such as paint, carpets and cleaners, among others.
12. Medications like antidepressants, birth control pills, hormone replacement therapy and antibiotics. 

How can you tell if your liver is "toxic" or overworked?
1. Weight gain, especially around the abdomin
2. Cellulite
3. Abdominal bloating
4. Indigestion
5. High Blood Pressure
6. Elevated cholesterol
7. Fatigue
8. Mood swings
9. Depression
10. Skin rashes
I promise you, when I went on the Fat Flush before, I had no cellulite afterwards!

Ann Louise deals with 10 hidden factors that bring on unwanted pounds. They are:

1. Tired, toxic liver
2. False fat
3. Fear of eating fat
4. Insulin resistance and inflamation
5. Stress as a fat maker
6. Messy Microbiome
7. Poor quality bile
8. Tuckered out thyroid
9. Hidden hitchhikers - parasites
10. Missing magnesium

There is so, so much more info I wish I could tell you, but can't possibly cover everything in this post! Like I said, please ask me questions. But one important statement in the book is what I want to emphasize! She says

 "Only when you bring your liver back to full function will you lose this fat." I guess that's the diet and book in a nutshell!

Since I've had trouble losing weight this past year after finding out I have Hypothyroidism and Hashimotos, an autoimmune disease, I've just decided to go back on the Fat Flush, which is the diet I went on in 2002 and again in 2007. The past 3 months I've been trying the AIP, autoimmune protocol based on a form of the Paleo diet, but I haven't had much success. This has left me feeling very discouraged and depressed, with not much hope of getting better, even though the tests for my thyroid says I'm in the normal range. How's that possible?  Back to my past, around 1996, after menopause, when I started gaining weight after being slim most of my life, I actually went on 30 different diets (I wrote them down!) and the most I could lose on any of them was 1 lb. in 3 months! But then I read an article about the Fat Flush in a Women's World magazine in 2002 and thought I'd try it. I went on it and lost 7 lbs. the 1st week! Of course, this was very encouragjng, which made me stick to it. I lost a total of 30 lbs on it altogether. It took me about 6 yrs. to gain some weight back, because I didn't stay on it, so I went on it again in 2007 and lost from size 14 to a size 6 in just a few months. 

Since gaining weight the past 6 years, from cooking comfort foods for a family living in my home temporariily, a lack of exercise after my esophagus surgery and now the thyroid problem, nothing has worked for me in trying to lose weight. I just decided to go back on the Fat Flush for the 1st time in 10 years and my cousin's widow is going on it with me. We  got our new book in the mail this week for the New Fat Flush Plan - updated and better. Believe me, the first book is fantastic and if you follow the plan you WILL lose weight, but the author has learned so much more, what works and doesn't work, since writing that first book. So this new one should give you even more success. I do not want to start the diet until my friend and I have read the whole book, but I will definitely give updates on our progress. I'm really excited because I now have hope that I can feel better. I remember how much better I felt going on the Fat Flush all those years ago. And I did not have nearly as much pain in my body from conditions such as arthritis and scoliosis.

This diet deals with the thyroid and autoimmune conditions too. Ann Louise Gittleman is a hero in my eyes. You can read so much more about her on the internet.

You don't even have to do strenuous exercises. In fact, too much can be counterproductive. She recommends walking 3-5 times a week for 20 minutes or more depending on your situation. 

 I completely trust her and all her research, since the Fat Flush has been 1 of the top successful diets ever and the fact her books have been on the # 1 New York Time's best selling lists. She knows what she's talking about. Since I went off the antidepressent over a yr. ago (because of weight gain), I haven't had much incentive to do anything and have been depressed a lot. I figured since nothing else is working for me right now, I might as well go on a diet plan that I had so much success on before. I'm still reading the new book, but want to record my progress here on my blog. I will try to post more info on the diet from time to time and if you have any questions, please ask.  By the way, you will want to read the comments below too, because i give more info, as people are asking questions!

There IS hope, if you follow the plan!

Original Fat Flush Book from 2002

POST # 2 on the Fat Flush
This next post was added later, on June 20, 2017

Products I Buy from Trader Joe's for the Fat Flush


If you don't have a Trader Joe's where you live, it is really worth looking for one in a nearby town. My Trader Joe's is about 20 minutes from me and I go there at least once every 2-3 weeks and it's well worth it.


Things I buy at Trader Joe's for the Fat Flush:
1. Flax Seeds - whole, roasted ($2.99 for a 16 oz bag). You can eat them whole (in salads and smoothies) or you can grind them in a coffee grinder, or buy them
already ground. I think they are fresher if I grind them myself, but I do buy the ones already ground too. When I went on the Fat Flush the first time, I didn't grind the seeds. I had no idea at the time that they are more nutritious and beneficial when they are ground, but they helped me lose weight eating them whole anyway. Of course, your teeth grind them up when you are eating them! Sometimes I grind them, but I still like to eat them whole. Btw, the roasted ones taste like a nut. 
2. Ground Flax Seeds - ($2.99 for a 16 oz bag) I think this is the name on the Trader Joe's
brand, but you can also find it in a pkg called Flaxseed Meal by Bob's Red Mill. They have lots of non gluten flours such as coconut flour, almond flour, corn flour, potato flour, rice flour, tapioca flour and others. Big Lots even has a bunch of these flours. 
3. Unsweetened 100% cranberry juice ($4.99 for 32 oz) You dilute it this way: 1 cup unsweetened juice in a half gallon

container, fill the rest with filtered water. You can add stevia or one of the other approved sweeteners. I use stevia. You will drink this during the day, but it's also to be used for your Long Life Cocktail that you'll drink every morning when you first get up and right before going to bed. 
4. Flax Oil - at TraderJoe's it's $8.99, but most other places it's $15-$20 (or more). It's important that this is in a dark container,

because it can go rancid. I
keep it in my refrigerator, but believe me, when I've had it too loog it doesnt taste good. But that's only if I'm not on the diet and haven't used it for a while. When I'm on the FF and usiing it everyday, it doesn't go bad. You are supposed to use flax oil in your salads along with apple cidr vinegar or fresh lemon juice.  (Flax seeds sprinkled on that too) but there are recipes for a viniagrette or other dressings in the book and on Pinterest. You can also put flax oil and flax seeds on your vegetables if you didn't eat a salad for the day. It's important to have at least 2 tablespoons of flax seeds daily and some flax oil. Flax oil and flax seeds are great in smoothies too! In fact, it may be a requirement. 
5. Heart of Palms - This is something I put in my salads that I love. It comes in a can, and you can also buy it at regular grocery stores, but it costs less at Trader Joe's. 
6. Ezekiel Bread - this is the sprouted wheat bread I have been buying for about 19 yrs. When I was tested in 1998 and found out I have a wheat and dairy intolerance, my Dr.told me I could use this instead of regular bread. But the last couple of years I have found out I'm sensitive to the gluten in wheat, and this bread is not gluten free. If you can eat it, though, most grocery stores and health food stores carry it frozen, but Trader Joe's has it fresh - not frozen. I've always kept it in my freezer since I dont use bread that often.
7. Stevia Extract - $9.99. This comes in a small bottle, but it takes just a tiny bit to
sweeten your beverage. The spoon that comes with it is probably less than 1/8th of a teaspoon. This is 100%pur orgsnic stevia extract, and I've never seenthis pur extract any place else. Most of the stevia you get in grocery stores contain fillers that are not good for you and arenot allowed onthe Fat Flush. At Trader Joe's it comes in a liquid ($6.99) as well as packets ($6.99) too. 
Of course, there are other things I buy at Trader Joe's too, but these are the main things I buy for the Fat Flush, since you can find the best prices there.

Let me know if you have questions!

Layered Taco Casserole and Mexican Rice

Layered Taco Casserole

I've never been crazy about chili powder so Tacos and Chili have not been among my favorite dishes. This may sound strange but I like my own recipe for Chili, because I don't use tons of chili powder, as most recipes call for.

I have a family living in my home temporarily and I do all the cooking. They love Mexican food so I'm always looking for new recipes. I came across this recipe for Taco Bake and decided to give it a try because it is quick and easy. I usually tweak recipes I find, so they are different from the original. But the fact it calls for corn tortilla chips instead of flour tortillas caught my eye. I have a wheat intolerance and avoid flour.
By the way, this recipe is great and tastes even better  left over.

Ingredients
  • 1 lbs. ground beef
  • 1 can Rotel tomatoes, mild
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 pkg. taco seasoning (I used 3/4 of the pkt)
  • 2 cups cheddar cheese
  • Corn tortilla chips
  • Chopped fresh tomato, diced green onions and sour cream for garnish. 

Preheat oven to 350.
Fry ground beef in pan til done. Drain fat and add taco seasining, Rotel, sour cream and water. Simmer for about 5 minutes. In a greased,  13" by 9" baking dish, layr ingredients in this order.
Corn tortillas
Ground beef mixture
Cheese
 Corn tortillas
Ground beef misture
 Cheese
Bake for 20 minutes. Place fresh chooped tomatoes and green onios on top. Serve with Mexican Rice (recipe below)


Mexican Rice - A great side dish with any Mexican meal!

Mexican Rice


1/2 cups chopped onion
1 clove chopped garlic
1-2 Tb oil
1 cup uncooked Basmati (or a little more), rinsed and drained
1-8oz can tomato sauce
1 cup frozen or canned corn
1/2 tsp salt
Black pepper to taste
2-3 dashes of cumin
2 cups chicken broth (or water)
Optional- ceyenne pepper, chili powder, paprika

Saute garlic and onion in oil about 1- 2 minutes, add rinsed rice and toast for about 2-3 more minutes. Add tomato sauce, cumin, salt, pepper, corn and chicken broth. Turn down heat, cover and let it simmer til done, about 20-30 minutes, checking it after 20 minutes for doneness.
You'll love the sweetness of the corn that counters the heat of the spices and Rotel that's in the Taco Bake.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Bohemian Crochet Bag with Tassels


This bag design of mine was published in the 2013 Special Collectors Issue of Vogue Knitting Crochet.

They titlted it Drawstring Bag. Just in case you missed that issue, which was full of fantastic designs,  you can now purchase the pattern at the link below for $5.00.    This is one of my favorite bag designs!

Scroll down for the link to this pattern.


Pattern for this bag can be found here:
https://store.vogueknitting.com/p-3555-drawstring-bag.aspx

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Pork and Saurkraut


Being a southern girl who grew up in the south, I had never heard of Pork with Saurkraut. When we moved to Ohio i quickly found out it was a tradition to serve this dish on New Year's Day. I just couldn't imagine saurkraut with pork, or any meat for that matter. But it soon became one of my favorite meals! There are a few different ways to prepare it, but  it is actually a German dish.

Since my mother in law cooked it in the oven for several hours, that's the way I have always fixed it. But this time I decided to cook it in my crock pot. It turned out better than any other time I have fixed it, so I'm sticking with this recipe. I looked at several different recipes on Pinterest, but decided to come up with my own combination of ingredients. You could easily use this recipe and cook it in the oven (covered) for 4-6 hours on about 250 degrees. But I'm calling this my:

Pork and Saurkraut in the Crock Pot 



Ingredients
1 pork roast or 2 pkgs pork spare ribs
1 large can or jar saurkraut, undrained
1/2 onion, sliced
1/2 -1 cup apple juice
2-3 teaspoons brown sugar
Bacon grease (I keep mine in the freezer when I cook bacon)
Salt and pepper
Oil for sauteing pork

Directions
Salt and pepper pork on all sides and place in frying pan with hot oil. Saute pork on medium high heat, til all sides are brown. Place in crock pot that has been set to "low". Place sliced onions on top, then pour entire jar (including liquid) of saurkraut on top, spreading around. Do NOT drain or rinse kraut. (Note: It will not be as good if you rinse and drain it. Believe me, I know, because I've fixed it both ways. Salt and pepper the saurkraut. Pour the apple juice all over this and then sprinkle brown sugar over the top. Now put about 4-5 teaspoons bacon grease on top of everything. Cook on low in your slow cooker for 6 hours. This is delicious and SO tender! Not to mention the aroma that will fill your home!
I like to serve it with mashed potatoes and either collard greens or green beans. The saurkraut (thats not so sour anymore) and liquid it creates is scrumptious over the mashed potatoes. I hope you enjoy this dish.





Sunday, April 2, 2017

My Interview with Women's World Magazine!

Women’s World did an interview with me on how you can make money with crochet and it was published in their March 27, 2017 issue. Dr Oz is on the front cover of that one. 

This may not be a big deal to some, but I'm really excited because this is a major magazine and not a crochet magazine! 

I talked about pattern testing and contact crocheters. The contract crocheter part didn’t get in because I wrote the lady later and added that, but it was too late. Anyway, they mentioned me and my Positively Crochet blog, so hopefully it will bring more traffic to my blog. I thought it was cool for crochet to be mentioned in this major magazine! They have millions of readers!
I mention Ravelry and Crochetville too.