Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Pretty Pinafore

I won this pattern from THE SEWING DORK. It is quick and easy and oh so adorable.

Tied in the front

Reversible and tied in the back
MonkeyGirl wants a red one with zebras. I can't wait to see how it turns out. You can buy the pattern here.

Shepard's Pie

Preheat oven to 350.

2-3 potatoes, peeled and cubed

Boil until soft, then mash with garlic and almond milk until fluffy. Set aside.

2 lbs ground beef, browned
2 dashes of Worcestershire sauce

Drain beef and scoop into the bottom of a casserole dish. Set aside.

4 carrots, cubed
1/2 onion, cubed
2 celery stalks, cubed
1 tbsp minced garlic
2 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup frozen peas
2 tsp Italian spices (I used Epicure Pasta Italian)
1 tsp sage
1 tsp rosemary

Cook until softened. Place veggies on top of beef in casserole dish.

I made gravy from GlutenFree Goddess.

2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons rice flour
1 and 1/2 cups almond milk
2 tablespoons vegan butter (I used Earth Balance)
2 tablespoons GF nutritional yeast (or use some gluten-free bouillon if you prefer)
Sea salt and ground pepper, to taste

Heat the olive oil in a pot over medium-low heat; stir in the rice flour to make a paste. Stir and cook for half a minute. Slowly add in the almond milk, and keep stirring. Add the vegan butter, nutritional yeast, and sea salt. When it begins to thicken remove from heat and taste test.

Pour gravy over veggies. Smooth mashed potatoes over the top. Bake in oven for 30 min.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Comox Valley Breastfeeding Support Bag Project

Breast milk is the natural first food for babies. The World Health Organization recommends exclusively breastfeeding for the first six months of life for optimal health, growth and development.

After brainstorming with other milky mamas in the Valley, we decided to put together a breastfeeding resource project.

With the Comox Valley Breastfeeding Support Bag project, our mission is to provide pregnant and post partum mothers with education and support to sustain their breastfeeding relationship. We do this by offering breastfeeding information and community resources along with samples of breastfeeding friendly products in a reusable bag. We will distribute the bags to pregnant and post partum mothers in our community.

The Comox Valley Breastfeeding Support Bag project supports the WHO's international code for marketing of breast milk substitutes. To find out more about the code, please refer to the FAQ.

We are asking for donations from local businesses, who support breastfeeding. We welcome donations of breastfeeding information, community resources for breastfeeding moms and babes and/or samples of products that support breastfeeding. If you or your business want to be part of this project, please contact me at kendrahansen30@gmail.com.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Birthday Purse

My girlfriend, Tanya, is celebrating her 25th birthday soon. I made her this purse. I hope she loves the print and the cozy recycled wool inside. I even stitched a small, zippered pocket inside. Thanks to tiny happy for the easy to follow tutorial.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

My Favorite Rice

My mom used to make this for me in the oven in a casserole dish. I make mine in my Cuisinart rice cooker.

2 cups boiling water
1 cube of chicken boulianne
2 tbsp Earth Balance butter
1/2 onion, diced
1 cup rice

Cook in rice cooker or bake in covered casserole dish for 30-40 min. in 350 oven.

Meat Loaf

This is a success with my family. I find it turns out best if I don't measure anything.

Preheat oven to 375.
Add to bowl:
2 lbs of lean ground beef
1/2 cup gluten free oats
1/4 cup of organic ketchup or tomato paste
1/4 cup of almond milk
Let the oats absorb the milk/tomato, about 10 minutes. Mix with your hands.
1 onion, diced
a splash of wheat-free tamari
1 can of sliced mushrooms

Bake in oven for about 1 hr. Serve with oven fries and veggies.

Ahoy Matey!

More wool longies. They look so cute on my boy that I can't stop making them.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011


I was cruising Facebook while I nursed Mr.Man today. I usually look at Code Name: Mama, peaceful parenting, Leaky B@@b and SAHM natural businesses. I came across a post by Code Name: Mama. She stitched a new superhero cape for her son. I have some extra flannel and now I have an inspiration. CNM linked back to this tutorial, so I checked it out.
My MonkeyGirl loved it. After running around being a superhero and training our dog as her side-kick, it was time for an episode of WordGirl on YouTube. I like cuddling and watching this show with her in the evenings. I may even learn a new word or two.
The next morning E-Girl wanted to wear her cape to school but decided against it last minute because of our rainy climate.

Apple Crisp

MonkeyGirl requested this delicious and easy recipe for dessert tonight.

Preheat oven to 350.

3-4 apples, peeled and sliced
Place in a glass baking dish (we used a loaf dish)

1/2 cup Earth Balance
1 cup brown sugar, packed
1 cup GF oats
1/4 cup GF flour (we used soy flour)
2 tsp cinnamon
Spread evenly over apples and bake for 30-40 minutes or until apples are soft and bubbly and crust is golden at the edges.
MonkeyGirl using the apple machine

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Dress for Sage

I did it! I created a dress on my sewing machine. I have been searching the 1/2 off bin at my local fabric store for 1-2 meter bits that I can use for practice. I found this beautiful fabric that I used for the skirt there for $3 and I only used half of it on this dress. After a lot of trouble with the fit of the dress I decided to use no-sew snaps to make it easier to get in and out of. I hope Sage and her mommy love it.

Front of dress

Back of dress with no-sew snaps

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Sore Loser

My daughter and I are affected by cold sores. These nasty little sores have bothered me since I was 7 years old. I feel like I have tried every remedy: OTC, prescription, natural, preventative with varying degrees of success. I recently came across a product by My Mama's Love called Sore Loser. This is an all natural product that according to their trial participants can stop a cold sore in it's tracks or after the blister erupts can cut healing time to 3 days. MonkeyGirl has had numerous cold sores this winter and we usually use Zovirax, which is a prescription cream. Her healing time is somewhere around 5 days while using Zovirax. She woke up the other day with the start of a cold sore. I immediately put some Sore Loser on it. She said it smelled nice and didn't sting. A great review from 5 year old MonkeyGirl. Today is the end of day 2 of her cold sore and the blister is completely gone. She has a small red mark on her lip where the cold sore was yesterday. I can't believe, it seems like a miracle.
Opinions of a Moody Mama is having a giveaway of some My Mama's Love products. I have entered the contest, have you?

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Wool Longies

Mr. Man in his recycled wool longies.
I recently found an Elna sewing machine at the thrift store near our home for $10. After having it cleaned and tuned up at the local sewing shop, I began sewing. I raided my Dad's closet and scoured the local thrift store racks for wool sweaters. I found a tutorial with great photo step-by-step directions here at The Sewing Dork. Thanks for the inspiration and clear instructions. I love the creative feel of wool. It's very forgiving and perfect to learn how to sew.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Brown Sugar and Spice Pudding Cake

Preheat oven to 400.

In a bowl mix:
1/2 cup white rice flour
1/4 cup tapioca flour
1/4 cup potato starch
1 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg

Boil 2 cups of water to make sauce.

In a liquid measure add:
1/2 cup almond milk
1/4 cup olive oil
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla

Mix well. Add the liquid to the dry ingredients. Mix until smooth. Spread batter into baking dish (I used a glass pie plate and the sauce spilled over a bit). Place 6-8 tsp of butter, I use Earth Balance, on top of batter. Add 1 cup of brown sugar to 2 cups boiling water.  Pour over batter in baking dish. Bake for 30-40 min. Serve with my Coconut Whipped Cream. Serves 4-6.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Effective Listening

My daughter, MonkeyGirl, has been coming home from school with a 'sore tummy'. The school will call me at lunch time and I go pick her up. We drive home and she jumps out of the car, runs inside and asks 'Can I watch a movie?' Well. . .this does not seem like a girl with a 'sore tummy' but I play along for a day, two days, three days. During our days home we have been discussing her tummy aches. She says she doesn't have enough time to finish her lunch at school so she gets hungry and then her tummy hurts. This makes sense to me so I try to help her by cutting and peeling all fruit, offering lots of snacks as well as a sandwich. I talk to her teacher about allowing Emalee a bit more time if needed to finish her lunch. Day 4 - another 'sore tummy' and another phone call home at lunch.
MonkeyGirl and I, posing in the sun!
I have just started reading Parent Effectiveness Training by Dr. Thomas Gordon. The ideas in this book are helping with my listening skills. I ask Emalee about her 'sore tummy' again. She tells me that she goes outside to play but no one wants to play with her then they come inside to eat and her tummy hurts and she doesn't feel like eating. Ah ha! We have identified a different problem. The AquaMom I was before reading Dr. Gordon's book would offer a list of suggestions. 'Why don't you ask someone else? How about you ask a friend from your class before you go outside? Try joining in without asking.' After reading his book (at least the first half) I try listening to her instead. This is Emalee's own problem, this doesn't effect me personally or so this book says. It does make me incredibly sad that no one wants to play with my sweet, loving Monkey but for the sake of listening and helping her to solve her own problem I try to listen without advising or suggesting. I validate her feelings by saying that it looks like it makes you very sad when no one will play with you. She tells me more about her efforts to find a playmate. I continue to validate her feelings and listen as she tells me about what has been happening on the playground. When our conversation has come to an end we play and read a story.
This morning I ask her if she is feeling worried about outside playtime. She said nope, I'm not worried. This makes me feel great. I hope she has solved her own problem. This type of listening is very hard for me. I want to help my MonkeyGirl and I now realize that I can't solve all her problems. I enjoy listening to her feelings and she seems to relax when I validate them for her. This has helped us both when she is hurt or sad and crying. If I validate her feelings by saying 'You are feeling sad because you banged your knee and it really hurt you.' or 'Are you feeling frustrated because Mr.Man messed up your game, again?'
I plan to continue using listening and validation of feelings with all the relationships in my life.

Saturday, January 8, 2011


Mix in a medium bowl:

2 cups white rice flour
4 Tbsp sorghum flour
2 Tbsp tapioca flour
2 Tbsp potato flour
4 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
 4 tsp baking powder

Heat your waffle iron. We use two Cuisinart waffle irons.
In another medium bowl, beat thoroughly:

4 eggs


3 cups coconut milk
4 Tbsp canola oil
1 tsp vanilla

Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.  When the waffle iron is hot, lightly spray it with oil and spoon or pour a serving of batter onto the iron and cook until the waffle starts releasing less steam.  Serve hot. This recipe makes enough to feed our hungry family of four.

Coconut Whipped Cream

Refrigerate one or two cans of full fat coconut milk (I use Thai Kitchen) over night.
Open cans being careful not to shake. Scoop white (fat) from the top into a bowl.
Add vanilla and icing sugar to taste.
Whip until smooth.
Makes about 1 1/2 cups per can.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


Thanks to Karina over at Gluten-Free Goddess for posting this magnificent recipe.

Green Chile Sauce
1 cup  vegetable broth
1 tablespoon starch (tapioca, arrowroot, potato) dissolved in a little cold water
1 generous cup diced roasted green chiles- hot or mild
2-3 cloves garlic, minced
1 teaspoon chili powder, hot or mild
1 15-oz can organic black beans, drained
3-4 cloves garlic, minced
1 lime, juiced
2 cups cooked sweet potatoes, cubed
1/2 cup diced roasted green chiles
1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon chili powder, mild or spicy, as you prefer
dash of salt and pepper

You will also need:
2-4 tablespoons light olive oil
12 small corn tortillas
Shredded Mozzarella Sheese
6x9 baking dish

Preheat oven to 350.
Make your Green Chile Sauce by combining the broth, dissolved starch. green chiles, garlic and spices in a sauce pan and heating over medium-high heat. Simmer until thickened. Set aside.
Combine the drained black beans with minced garlic and lime juice. Toss to coat the beans and set aside.

In a separate bowl combine the sweet potatoes with the chopped green chiles; add the spices. Season with sea salt and pepper.

Pour about 1/4 cup of the Green Chile Sauce into the bottom of the baking dish.

Grab a skillet and heat a dash of oil. Lightly cook the corn tortillas to soften them - one at a time - as you fill each one.

Lay the first hot tortilla in the sauced baking dish; wet it with the sauce.

Spoonful of the sweet potato mixture down the center.

Top with a spoonful of the black beans.

Wrap and roll the tortilla to the end of the baking dish.

Repeat for the remaining tortillas. Top with the rest of the sauce.

Top with Sheese.

Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until the enchiladas are hot and the sauce is bubbling around the edges.

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Muligawtany Soup

This is a wonderful recipe from Karina at Gluten-Free Goddess.

1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon Thai Kitchen Red Curry paste
1 medium red onion, peeled, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
6 medium carrots, peeled and diced
2 stalks celery, chopped
2 medium apples, peeled, cored and diced
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and diced
1/2 cauliflower, diced
1 quart light vegetable broth
1 cup coconut milk
Juice from 1 or 2 medium limes, as needed
1 teaspoon organic raw sugar
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper, to taste
1 14-oz. can chick peas, rinsed and drained
Finely diced red onion, apple, or chopped fresh cilantro, for garnish

You'll also need:

1 pot of cooked jasmine rice

Heat the olive oil over medium high heat in a medium size soup pot. Add the curry paste and stir briefly to season the oil. Add in the onion, garlic, carrots, celery, apples and sweet potato; stir and cook until softened, about 7 minutes.

Stir in the vegetable broth. Bring to a high simmer and then cover the pot; reduce the heat and simmer the soup, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables are tender, about 20 to 30 minutes.

Add the coconut milk, a squeeze of lime juice and a touch of agave or raw sugar. Stir with love. Taste for seasoning adjustments.

Adjust the seasonings to your liking. Heat through gently; don't boil.

Place a hot spoonful of rice in the bottom of each bowl. Spoon the soup over the rice. Serve the mulligatawny with a garnish of diced red onion, apple or cilantro.

Serves 4.


The new year is here at last and I have a few resolutions for 2011:

1. To be a conscious parent and spouse.

2. To make delicious meals almost every night.

3. To continue on my breastfeeding counselor journey

I have thought about what I need to do to meet these goals. I have started to actually take the steps to meet my resolutions.
I have purchased a book Parenting Effectiveness Training by Dr. Thomas Gordon. I have only just begun to read this highly recommended book on my Kobo eReader. I don't know what I am more excited about becoming a more effective parent or my Kobo. I can take this light weight electronic reader anywhere. It comes with 100 pre-loaded classics like The Jungle Book by Kipling. I am currently reading this to MonkeyGirl and part of my first resolution, to share my love of reading with MonkeyGirl.
Sharing a love of reading
 I purchased a day planner today to help make a regular schedule so that I can stay on top of my household jobs as well as meal planning. Tonight's meal is Mulligatawny soup (recipe is here). I will be trying a few new recipes every week as well as sticking with some old favorites.
Now we come to resolution number 3. I would love to attend a DONA approved Postpartum Doula Workshop in June. I have some reading to do before then. I am in the process of becoming an applicant for a La Leche League Leader as well . These two goals have intersecting pathways and both will be helpful to my goal of helping breastfeeding mothers.
Here is to the new year and to meeting goals.