Saturday, December 4, 2010

Chicken Tamales by Diana's Mexican Foods recalled for undeclared MILK

California Firm Recalls Chicken Tamales Due To Mislabeling and an Undeclared Allergen
Fri, 03 Dec 2010 18:48:45 -0600

Diana's Mexican Food Products, Inc. a Lawndale, Ca. establishment, is recalling approximately 41,670 pounds of chicken tamales because they contain an undeclared allergen, whey.       

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

RECALL - 18 cases of Jay's potato Chips for UNDECLARED MILK

Please click on link for details.

Mon, 22 Nov 2010 17:54:00 -0600

In order to be overly cautious and protect public health, Krunchers! Inc. is recalling all Jays Original Potato Chips that were produced the day of the incident; nevertheless, 18 cases are affected. The recall is the result of seasoning containing a milk allergen in an Original Potato Chip bag.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Liz Lovely is recalling chocolate chip cookies undeclared MILK

Please see below and click on link for details 

Liz Lovely Issues Voluntary Recall on Products Containing Chocolate Due to Undeclared Dairy from Chocolate Supplier
Tue, 16 Nov 2010 14:25:00 -0600

Liz Lovely, Inc. of Waitsfield, VT, a dairy free bakery, is recalling cookie products containing chocolate or chocolate chips with undeclared dairy present in the chocolate which was purchased from a third-party chocolate manufacturer. Liz Lovely cookie products are distributed nationwide in retail stores and through mail orders.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Trick or Treating to all from us

Happy Halloween

Sorry that it has been so long...but I think that I am ready to come back after my little hiatus :)  Thank you for sticking with me

Friday, October 15, 2010

RECALL - undeclared MILK in Pictsweet Company Ounce Clear Bag Breaded Okra

The Pictsweet Company Issues Allergy Alert On Undeclared Milk In 32 Ounce Clear Bag Breaded Okra
Fri, 15 Oct 2010 10:31:00 -0500

The Pictsweet Company of Bells, TN is recalling specific lots of Pictsweet 32 ounce Clear Bag Breaded Okra because they contain undeclared milk product. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to milk may run the risk of serious allergic reaction if they consume this product. This recall affects only Pictsweet 32 ounce Clear Bag Breaded Okra with production codes beginning with the following five digits: 1400B, 1550B, 1660B, 1730B, 1870B, 2030B, 2350B, 2500B and was distributed to retailers in the Southeast United States...

Sunday, September 19, 2010

What to do with all of our pears? - Fantastic, quick, delicious recipe

We planted fruit trees for each of our girls after they were born.  An apple tree for Alena, and a pear tree for Mia Rose.  This is the first year the that the pear tree bears abundant fruit.  Very exciting :)  So yesterday, I was looking for a recipe for "Birnenkuchen" (Pear Cake).  Instead of butter the recipe I choose uses olive oil.  The result was a cake that was delicious, moist, not overly sweet.  Oh, and this recipe can be used for any type of fruit. Yay, just what I needed.  

Here it is 

  • 5 Apples, pears or other fruit
  • Preheat oven to 360 F (180 C)
  • 200 gr flour
  • 200 gr sugar
  • 5 eggs
  • 3 tsp baking powder (recipe calls for one package)
  • 200 ml "milk" (I had plain soy creamer)
  • 6 Tbl Olive Oil
  • Pinch of salt
  1. Peel fruit and cut fruit into slivers 
  2. Mix eggs, sugar, and pinch of salt until it is creamy
  3. Slowly add flower and baking powder
  4. Add "milk" and olive oil
  5. Add fruit to dough mixture
  6. Pour into spring form and bake for about 45 minutes until top of cake is nicely browned. (Start checking after 35 minutes)

Enjoy!!! Happy baking :)  

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Alena's first day of First Grade

Here are some pictures of my First Grader...

Alena and her "Schultuete"

Ready to go to school the first day

Walking to school

Alena at her desk in school

It has been a long week...

Oh, how I miss our old little school. There are a few up-sides to attending the neighborhood school.  We can walk to school, as it is only a little more than two blocks away from our house; and there is a pretty nice playground.  In addition, I met with the nurse a couple of times, and also spoke with the principal.  I have not spoken with the teacher about Alena's CG as that communication is supposed to go through the nurse and principal.  That, my friends, is fairly strange to me.  The nurse has informed me, that if there are treats we are not informed ahead of time.  I brought in a couple of different ice cream treats for Alena.  The nurse however relayed to me, that the teacher was not sure if that would work.  Well, we will have to see.  I also went with the nurse through the cafeteria to ensure that Alena would not be able to take food.  We took her lunch card, swiped her and NOTHING showed on the screen in regards to foods she cannot eat.  The nurse proceeded to ask the lunch lady to add the "No items" to her card; she added it right away but instead of writing "no milk, lactose, whey, casein" she typed "No Nuts"!!! Aaaaaarrrrggghhhh - I know, I have to channel positive energy towards school.  - Never-the-less this situation makes me cry....

Monday, September 6, 2010

...tomorrow is the day - school starts and I am still worried...

"Mama, I am so excited for tomorrow..." Alena whispered just before she fell asleep tonight. Oh, how I wish I could say the same.  I think that I am more anxious than anything.  What will it be like?  What will the teacher be like? What will it be like for her to be in school from 8:35 - 3 PM every day?  And the really big question for me, what will she be doing during that time...the questions are endless, and so is my worry.   We had a last summer hooray and spent four days in Sunriver. We got back yesterday, and we finally received the school package.  Alena is assigned a teacher and I would have loved to speak with her BEFORE school starts, but oh well.  The registration form lists special medical information and states "METH BOLIC Disorder"!!! OK - I understand time and money is at a premium, but has anyone ever heard of this??? Also, I know for a fact that I wrote Classic Galactosemia, Metabolic Disorder, NO MILK or MILK DERIVATIVES all over the registration form...This really worries me.  But hey, I need to get back in the swing of things and think positive, right?! The upside really will be the commute - walking distance, and hopefully neighborhood friends.  So for now, I will attempt to funnel positive energy to the school start tomorrow.  But believe it or not, this is - right now - actually a true challenge for me.  I have to remember that the glass is half full....

Thursday, September 2, 2010

School is about to start and I am nervous

Yes, it is true I am so nervous and almost beside myself with Alena entering 1st Grade.  This is the first time that she will be going to a big, public school.  So far, we had gone to a nice, safe, private PreK - K school and it was wonderful. I had communicated and educated the teacher's before the school year about Classic Galactosemia.  It really has helped ease my worries in the past.  But now?  Well, school will start on September 7th, 2010 and packages will go out tomorrow September 2nd, 2010.  I have tried to find out to whose class she was assigned to but apparently that information was  - as of this afternoon - yet unknown.  I have spoken with the Health Coordinator at the School System and she suggested that a 504 Plan be put in place for Alena.  I just briefly glanced at it and am not certain that this is really needed.  I think that we really just need a couple of things.  First, find out who her teacher will be and communicate with him/her; and secondly have Alena's lunch card reflect the items she cannot eat.

Oh, how I miss my small, safe school....I am just so worried and cannot think of anything to make me feel better...

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Is summer really almost over?

What happened to the time.  It is late, late August and school will start next week Tuesday.  Oh, we are so sad that our life of sweet summer leisure must come to an end so soon.  What happened to all these weeks we had? Well, one thing can be said for sure is that we have had a lot of fun.  Lot's of camping trips,  outings to the beach, and fun summer craft project.

I do not even want to think about school yet.  It all seems a little frighting at this point as we are moving out of our small, safe, wonderful PreK - K school into a regular Portland Public School.  Good bye 16 students, welcome for Alena being one of 25+....Yes, I do worry but for now there still is a little less than one week of summer to enjoy.  This morning we made a cake, and the oven time just went off....Enjoy those remaining few days...

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Vegan Pie Recipe(s) - Yay for the Oregonian

Tuesday is the day the food section appears in the Oregonian.  I love food, and also love to cook; even so my cooking/baking this summer has been a little more than rare.  In any case, there was a featured article talking about Vegan Pie's.  How fantastic is that? Completely CG safe recipes :)  Isn't that wonderful?  Well, and surely it is possible to sub the egg substitute with real egg.  Then, of course, the recipe is no longer vegan.  My thought is to substitute the egg substitute with real eggs.  In any case here is the recipe for the pie crust as Published in the Oregonian on August 24th, 2010.

 Coconut Oil Crust  

                          Published in the Oregonian on August 24, 2010

Coconut oil produces a very tender, flaky crust. If your coconut oil is liquid at room temperature, chill it until solid. But if it is solid at room temperature, leave it that way when you make the crust. Measure it in dry measuring cups as you would vegetable shortening.


  • 3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour, chilled
  • 1/2 cup whole-wheat pastry flour, chilled
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 2 tablespoons maple sugar (see note)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 6 tablespoons coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon apple cider vinegar
  • 3 to 5 tablespoons ice water


In a medium bowl stir together the flours, baking powder, sugar and salt.
Cut the coconut oil into the dry ingredients with a pastry cutter or two knives. Then, use your fingers to work the coconut oil into the flour until no pieces are bigger than the size of a pea.
Add the cider vinegar to the ice water and drizzle the mixture into the dough a spoonful at a time, mixing in each as you go. You have enough water in the dough when the dough holds together when squeezed. Do not add any more water than is absolutely necessary.
Gather the dough into a ball and flatten it into a disk. Wrap the disk in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 45 minutes before rolling.
Note: Less expensive substitutes for maple sugar are honey crystals, evaporated cane juice crystals, demerara sugar or brown sugar.
From "The Voluptuous Vegan" by Myra Kornfeld

You can find the entire article as well as recipes for Peach Crumbcake, Peach-Blueberry Crumb Pie,  here When you click on the article be sure to also click on Grant Butler's, the author,  link on his exploration on Vegan living.  There are a bunch of yummy vegan recipes and therefore all entirely CG safe :)  Enjoy!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Recall Milton's Baking Company - 24 oz Multi-Grain BreadUndeclared Milk in Some Loaves

This recall was just released!

Milton's Baking Voluntarily Recalls 24 oz. Multi-Grain Bread in Three States For Undeclared Milk in Some Loaves
Fri, 20 Aug 2010 17:07:00 -0500

Milton's Baking Company is voluntarily recalling Milton's Multi-Grain Bread which was distributed to locations in Northern and Central California, Arizona and Nevada. The company took the precautionary step because the loaves contain milk, an undeclared allergen, which may pose a potential serious and life-threatening health risk to milk-allergic individuals.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Recall of Kroger's "Meals Made Simple Shrimp Linguini"

Please see details of this link below.

Nationwide Milk Allergen Recall of Kroger "Meals Made Simple Shrimp Linguini"
Mon, 16 Aug 2010 17:02:00 -0500

Kroger (product distributor) and Contessa Premium Foods, Inc. (product manufacturer) are recalling 24 ounce bags of Kroger brand Meals Made Simple Shrimp Linguini, because it may contain undeclared milk product. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to milk products run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume this product.       

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Chocolate found - Spreadable, and bar chocolate :)

We recently found a couple of new (at least to us) items in the store.  One is spreadable chocolate which is somewhat similar to Nutella but without nuts, and milk; the other is a creamy sweet chocolate bar which is perfect for making s'mores and for eating :)

I found both items at New Seasons Market here in Portland.  The spreadable chocolate is "Dark Choco Dream", made in Belgium and distributed by Natural Nectar.  Here is a link to the manufacturers' site Only the Dark Choco Dream is milk free. The items is also available from various online stores.  Oh, and it is quite delicious :)

The chocolate bar is "Sweet Chocolate Dream".  It is very creamy, delicious and really sweeter than the usual safe dark chocolate I found. In the dark version, there is also a bar with raspberries, rice crunch, almonds, and just plain dark chocolate.  In case you are interested, here is the link  The girlies - by the way - love it!!!

Happy Chocolate eating to all!

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Tee-Pee Camping in Eastern Oregon

Last weekend we spent two nights in a Tee-Pee at Clyde Holiday State Park at the John Day River.  - It took us over five hours to get there, but we were prepared.  I had packed a picnic for the road complete with a pint of yummy golden tomatoes (tastes just like candy), a couple of salad's from New Seasons Market, bread, blueberries, sparkling water, salami, and also a small brick of Emmenthaler cheese.

Picnic break 
It was just amazing.  We drove along the John Day River and through the John Day Fossil Beds which by the way are a National Monument.
Alena, Mia Rose, and myself at the Candon Museum

The next stop was our, fun, fun minus the mosquito's.  I ended up with 40 plus bites as there is absolutely no netting, to keep them out.  But we sure had fun.  Ron prepared our newly found camping dish of Fajitas, which were again amazing.  Here are some more pictures...
"Our" Tee-Pee
Yummy Fajitas are cooking on the camp fire

The next day we saw the Painted Hills - there are no words to describe them -

Amazing colors
In regards to food however, we brought - as usual - most everything along.  Soy Milk, chocolate for s'mores, eating was not an issue at all.

We still wanted to go swimming, and soak in a Hot Spring.  A range told us that we could drive back via Pendelton, and stop at Ritter Hot Springs . We drove 11 Miles off the main road into the - seemingly - middle of nowhere. I did not know what to expect and I admit my fear of rattlesnakes, black widow's, and scorpions when we turned off the road to get to the Hot Springs.  11 Miles off the road...and was amazed to find an actual swimming pool.  Needless to say that the girls loved it...oh yes, there was also a soaking tub.  Walk through the grass - but watch for snakes we were told-, over a suspension bridge (I went), and into the hot tub...a couple more pictures.

All in all it was an amazing long weekend.  Fun, fun, fun...

I hope you are all enjoying your summer as well :)

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Found: The best CG safe chocolate - truffles...

This afternoon the girlies went swimming, and then to the Farmer's Market in Southeast Portland.  We all love Farmer's Market's.  Fresh produce, fruits to try, popsicles, music one word summer.  

Today we found something else on the Farmer's Market.  You know what?  OK, the title gave it away, but we found the most delicious, vegan, chocolate truffles.  Alena and Mia Rose must have sampled at least two whole truffles.  Truth be said, I probably had just as much. I have never, ever tasted such delicious, creamy, rich, vegan chocolate. We tried a salted carmel, passion-fruit lime truffle, and another one that was just as delicious.  All I can say is WOW - I did not know that this was possible.  We ended up buying one salted carmel, and a passion-lime truffle for dessert. My favorite is the passion-lime, while Mia Rosie and Ron favored the salted carmel truffle.  Alena - of course - loved all of them :)

Just amazing...makes me so happy.  So if you are wondering and also have the taste for some yummy chocolate truffles check them out I was told, that they ship the truffles world-wide...Enjoy!!!  I know we will be enjoying these treats...

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Links to prior posts in regards to eating cheese, and knowing that it will be OK

A few of you have been wondering when we allowed our girls to eat cheese, and allow all fruits as well as veggies.  Here are links to my prior posts on this topic.  Just in a nutshell however, we allowed cheeses after meeting with a family in Northern Italy who have also two children with CG. Their kids are older than ours and both had already eaten Parmesiano Reggiano for a few years.  Neither of their kids had any issue.  -  The following year we met up with a family in Berlin and they have a daughter with CG.  At that time both of our kids were allowed Parmesiano Reggiano.  The German family however told us that their clinic is including a long list of aged cheeses in their daughter's diet.  She has been eating all those cheeses as well. In any case, I also spoke with a Swiss family and they are also allowing all fruits, veggies, legumes, as well as certain aged cheeses.  The Swiss family in particular was astonished to find out that the Acosta diet is still being followed. We only exclude products containing the actual milk sugar. In any case, we feel comfortable with the girl's diets as evidenced by their GALT levels. - I am looking forward to your comments :)

Here are the links to prior posts

GREAT lab results...

What is in our fridge?!...

This is an individual journey for each family, and each clinic is also different.  It works for us....

Monday, August 2, 2010

Zucchini Race cars

Last week Wednesday we went to the Farmer's Market and the girls made zucchini race cars.  Look how fantastic they look :)

Zucchini Race cars - Who knew all the fun...

Friday, July 30, 2010

Amazing levels, amazing visit to the Metabolic Clinic and cheeses

We have the results from the recent draw. Both girls have perfect levels!!! Did I mention, that dinner the night before the blood draw included lots of Parmeseano Regiano tomatoes and garbanzo beans?  Yay....I am so, so very excited that the levels came back perfect.

We had our metabolic appointment on Tuesday and I had to pick-up the girls early. Neither was excited about the appointment out of fear that there would be a pain involved... To mix things up a little bit and make it fun, we did not drive up to OHSU today, but took the aerial tram.  Both were excited to ride the tram...oh, and if you do not live in Portland and wonder what I am talking about here is the link to the aerial tram  The tram connects the upper and lower part of OHSU.  It is quite amazing, and on a clear day you can see Mt. Hood :)

Our visits was great as usual. It did however stand out, from previous visits because this time we got the green light to expand on cheeses for the girls. Our new dietitian was very prepared and brought along the abstract of a British research study concluding which cheeses the British deem as safe.  This fall  adding Gruyezer, Emmenthaler, and Grana Padano Parmesan to the Parmesiano Regiano.Yay!!! FYI - Jarlsberg is also on the list, but I however am not a great fan.... Kaesspaetzle (= home made egg noodles baked with Emmenthaler & Gruyezer topped with browned onions) will meet new friends :)

Jokes aside - I am so thrilled to finally get the official green light on these cheeses from our Metabolic Clinic.  Europeans have long advocated for Galactosemics to eat aged cheeses due to the calcium.  And I do admit, that both kids have eaten Emmenthaler, as well as Gruyezer before just in small amounts.  I limited the amounts as I was not certain how much would beOK....

What about you?  Do you allow, or eat aged cheeses?  Will you allow it?  Do you like it? Does it worry you?  I would love to hear from you!!!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Another great camping trip...

Last weekend we took another great camping trip.  Oh, how we love summer and the camping trips it brings :) In any case, last weekend we drove only 1-1/2 hrs east to Memaloose State Park in the Columbia Gorge.  It is one of the hottest spots in the Columbia Gorge and temperatures last weekend were in the low 90s....The highlight for the girlies was meeting J.R. Beaver in person. J.R. Beaver is the mascot of the Oregon State Parks Junior Ranger Program - here is a link to the official page Both Mia Rose and Alena were both in total aaahhh. "J.R. is my favorite" Mia Rose said...and both proudly put on their J.R. Beaver tattoo's immediately.

Besides meeting J.R. we went swimming in the Columbia River, cooked on the campfire, and the girlies roasted marshmallows.   Swimming in the Columbia and cooking on the campfire were a first for us.  Let's just say that both were amazing.  Swimming was so much fun, and our meal was the best we have ever had when camping.  What did we make you ask?  Well, we made Fajitas.  We brought our cast iron pan along, I chopped the onions, peppers, and Ron cooked it all one by one on the campfire.  Topped it with lime juice, and served it with corn tortillas.  That was a true winner :)

Here are some pictures....

Ron putting up our tent
Alena is enjoying the water
Ron and Alena swimming

Here we are meeting J.R. Beaver
Alena, J.R. Beaver, Mia Rose, and me.  
The four of us :)

Friday, July 23, 2010

Some pictures - summer 2010, Cape Lookout State Park

Camping at Cape Lookout State Park in Oregon - Ron is playing guitar while the girlies are roasting marshmallows....

                                   The marshmallows are roasting for the little girls from P-Town :)

Yoga at the beach...what could be better - well, besides roasted marshmallows

Ron and Mia Rose are visiting the water....

                                        Waiting for the sunset....

Mia Rose is loving bacon....

                                                        We are having fun....

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Is everyone having a great summer?

Are you all having a great summer so far?  I would love to hear what you are doing...Both girls have been in camp a couple of days a week, and we have been camping.  Alena just told me today, that her favorite part about summer is to go camping.  What about you?

Thursday, July 15, 2010


The cream for the blood draw turned out to be a huge success :) Both
girls were initially very suspicious of the cream. Well, neither knew
what "numb" meant. Alena went first for the draw and did not feel a
thing. Same thing for Mia Rose...yay!!!

Afterwards we had lunch at the Farmer's Market where both girls ate
the best Italian Sausages, followed by crafts at a booth for kids, and
ended the day with manicures. Alena asked later "Mama, can we go have
a blood draw soon again?" Who knew

Have a happy day everybody!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

It's the night before the blood draw...

Doesn't time just fly like crazy.  I cannot belive that it is already time for our new blood draw.  Alena has now for weeks been dreaming about getting her blood drawn.  She wakes up with excitment and tells me that "I did not cry at all". Alena and Mia Rose both asked me to tell them exactly the night before we go up to the hill for the draw.  Well, tonight is the night and let me tell you it did not go well.  Alena worked herself up in such a frenzy that she did not want to go to bed.  Mia Rosie on the other hand was fine, but could not go to sleep, which in return led to a total - and I do mean total - meltdown. 

Tomorrow, however should be different because they are getting the anesthtic cream for the first time.  Fingers crossed that their veins won't narrow, and that the phlobotomist will be able to draw....updates to follow.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Alena took some photograph's

The other day, Alena decided to take some photograph's while we were waiting in the car....

Shoe and foot :)

                                                                    View outside the window

                                                           Self portrait  :)

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Recall - undeclared MILK in FUMA CUSTARD PIE

DOMEGA NY INTERNATIONAL CO., LTD Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Milk Powder in FUMA CUSTARD PIE
Thu, 01 Jul 2010 12:29:00 -0500

DOMEGA NY INTERNATIONAL CO. LTD 4820 2nd AVE BROOKLYN NY 11232 is recalling FUMA CUSTARD PIE because it may contain undeclared milk powder. Consumers who are allergic to milk powder may run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reactions if they consume this product.       

Potlucks I no longer fear you...

Yay - summer has finally arrived in the Pacific Northwest.  It's the time packed with parties, potlucks, picnics and all that fun.

I have to admit that neither Potlucks nor catered outdoor picnics used to be my favorite event.  No, I certainly do no dislike the outdoors - quite different I love being outdoors - but I have always been worried about the food options for the girls. Truth be said, so that is not the way I believe we should live. Exclude ourselves because I worry that there may a ton of foods the girlies cannot eat...That is not what I believe in. But you know what?  That is what I was doing.  I got frustrated because at catered lunches people are generally not aware of Allergens.  Much less even at potlucks.  People don't think about allergens.  And you know what?  I would not be thinking about them either - it was something I never understood in my "Pre Galactosemia" life.

In any case, have come up with some strategies to deal with these fun events.  No different from any of our other strategies they are:-

For catered events I try to

- find out as much as possible about the menu up front,
- call the company to discuss allergens
- call the organizers to find out about desserts
- are there dairy free options? Will we have to bring alternatives?

If all fails I bring food for the girls but that is really the last I want to do.  I want the kids to feel included and not different.
For Potlucks - and they are much harder - the strategy is to

- call the organizer to determine what types of food people will be bringing
- ask organizer to have foods marked with ingredients used - and I mention the allergen issue.
  • I know that sounds like a lot to ask for - but just basic ingredients.  I certainly do not ask that recepies be amended just for us...I am not that self centered. Well at least, I try not to be ...
For potlucks I also make sure to bring at least a couple of foods the girls can have - just to be on the safe side - such as potato salad, sausage, cuties, etc.

Now, I feel prepared and am happy to say "Potluck I no longer fear you"!!!

How do you deal with this?  I would love to hear from you!

Happy Summer to all of you!!!

Cervelat recalled due to undeclared Milk

Texas Firm Recalls Cervelat Sausage Product due to an Undeclared Allergen
Wed, 30 Jun 2010 18:42:50 -0500

San Antonio Packing Company, a San Antonio, Texas, establishment, is recalling approximately 9,408 lbs. of Cervelat Summer Sausage because it may contain an undeclared allergen, milk.       

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Undeclared Milk & Wheat in Pure Bade Garlic Spread concentrate & Pure Base Garlic Spread - Ready to spread

Pls click on link for details

Pure Base Distrbution Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Milk and Wheat in "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Concentrate" and "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Ready to Spread"
Mon, 28 Jun 2010 09:34:00 -0500

Pure Base Distribution, LLC of Ontario, CA is recalling its 4 ounce bottles of "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Concentrate" and 7 ounce bottles of "Pure Base Garlic Spread - Ready to Spread" items because they may contain undeclared milk and wheat. People who have allergies to milk and/or wheat run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products. If you or a member of your household is allergic to milk or wheat products, do not consume these products, but return them to your retailer for a full refund.       

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Fun at the beach

In late May 2010 we spent a few days in Manzanita at the Northern Oregon Coast.  FYI - we love Manzanita for its long, long beaches, for it's quietness, and also for it's natural food store offering everything from Soy Milk, to Soy Ice Cream all the way down to Vegan Cheese

At Ecola State Park - taking a stroll to the viewpoint in the rain

Taking a rest :)

Playing at the beach in Manzanita

Monday, June 14, 2010

Fun on a grey Monday afternoon

Oh, what a beautiful and sunny weekend we had.  The sun has finally arrived, the rain is gone but today...well, another story.  OK - I must be grateful for that there is no rain but the sky is grey covering up the sun.  Today was Alena's second to last day of Kindergarten :( and we needed some fun activity for the afternoon.  Swimming...the three of us love swimming and my first thought was to go to one Public Indoor Pools.  Well, you know what?! Not one of the Portland Pools was having open swim this afternoon leaving me with only one solution.  You know where we went? Yes? Do you?  Well, we went to the proven place at the McMenamin's Kennedy School in Northeast Portland.  Oh yes, there is nothing like an hour soaking in a lovely warm soaking pool.  All of us having fun. ->

We topped the afternoon off with a nutritious treat of a basket of Tater Tots along with Honey Mustard Dressing (when you go beware to special order that as it usually comes with Ranch). Ahhhhh....nice all that swimming made our afternoon so much better :)  Mia Rosie actually slept for a couple of hours while Alena is enjoying some time on the computer with "Die Maus.  Here is the link to Die Maus :)

Recall Bimbo Bakeries, Inc. Soft White Bread Due To Undeclared Milk

Please see details on this recall below. Product affected was sold in California, Oregon, Idaho, and Washington.
Bimbo Bakeries USA, Inc. Announces Recall of Bimbo Soft White Bread Due To Undeclared Milk
Sat, 12 Jun 2010 17:19:00 -0500
Bimbo Bakeries USA, Inc. is recalling Bimbo brand Soft White Bread (1 lb. 4 oz. or 567 grams) sold in California, Idaho, Oregon and Washington because it may contain undeclared milk. People who have an allergy to milk run the risk of life threatening or serious allergic reaction if they consume the product.       

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Would life be different without Galactosemia?

Does this sound like a strange question to you?  Well, it is one of those questions that sometimes go through my head...Why?  Because I am really not the mother I thought I would be.  Hmmm, maybe the title should be changed....In any case, I am certainly not the mother I imagined to be.  I had Alena in my third year, end of first semester of law school.  My vision at the time was as follows - I will have the baby, go back full-time to school, sit for the bar, and then take full-time job.  Yes, the baby was to be part of my life but you know I would not be giving anything up.  In retrospect that whole thought process scares me.  What on earth was I thinking???  In any case, as you know life happened differently.  Alena was born - on schedule as I may add - and she was a beautiful, healthy child.  I was already thinking about my upcoming exam!!! Then life happened - in less than a week Alena was fighting for her life.  And that is the point when everything else was no longer important to me.  That is the the point when the only thing that mattered to me was my child, and my spouse.  It has been from that point on forward that my life centers around my family.  Yes, I do work a couple of days a week but the main focus on is my family.  That is why I work part-time. Without Galactosemia, my main focus most likely would be a job first and, then my family.  Without Galactosemia I would take life much for for granted.  With Galactosemia I realize how fragile life really is.  That we need to be grateful to have each other and to appreciate each other daily.  So to me, Galactosemia is what set me on the track I should have been on all along.  In my mind, things happen for a purpose and you know what that old saying "when life throws you lemons make lemonade..."  So to answer my question, life would be different without Galactosemia...

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Springtime at the Rhododendron Garden...just some pictures

Here are a few pictures taken in late May 2010 at the Portland Rhododendron Garden...

A serious looking Mia Rosie is ready to take her backpack off :)))

Look at these bunnies with Rhodie blossom ears :)))

There is actually some blue sky....see the puddles?

The last picture is for the flower lover...I took the picture on the same day, and location....

Happy late spring everyone :)))

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Alena's school play & the ice cream celebration party - Thank you, Childswork!!!

Everyone has school plays at the end of the year and I am sure that they are an exciting time for everyone.  Alena also had at her school just like in the previous two years.  The school play at Childswork however is a little different because the students write the play, they create the stage decoration, and also make all of their costumes.  It is just amazing to see what these young children are capable off. The teachers are guiding the children, but the outcome is truly amazing.  Just look at Alena's costume

isn't it wonderful?! A pillow case cut, and painted, wings, and a head-piece.  What do you think?  Here is a picture of the entire class

aren't they just adorable? - Needless to say that both of us were two very proud parents.

Now about the after party.  Last year the after party took place at Ben & Jerry's which is one of our favorite ice cream places. They always have at least four different options which are CG safe.  This year a parent suggested to go out to a restaurant for ice cream for the after party.  I honestly was not thrilled about this idea.  I called the restaurant just to find out that there are zero no dairy dessert options, "...but you can bring your own..." I was told.  My first inclination was no way!!! But then again, Alena would feel terrible if we would not join the rest of her class.  But still I just did not feel that fantastic about it. Almost everybody else would be served their ice cream in a dish while our girlies would bring their own I had a thought.  What about if we buy the buy our ice cream, drop it off at the restaurant, go to the play, return to the restaurant and they serve it...sounds kind of crazy, doesn't it?  I called, asked and you know what that is exactly what happened.  I took the girlies to the store, Alena picked out the "ice cream", we dropped it off, and that is what the girls got served.  Their ice cream along with all the other kids...

Now is the time to give kudos.  Kudos to the wonderful teachers and staff at Childswork.  I would like to  particularly recognize Alena's teacher Marlie for calling me a couple of nights before the event to make sure that I was OK with it.  How thoughtful is that?  You know this is Alena's third year at Childswork the only school she has so far gone to.  Before she started school I was so worried, worried what would happen if she ate non-safe foods, worried that she would feel left out and be left out...and now is the time for me to say "Thank you, Childswork!" Thank you for the confidence you have given my child and me.  Alena has learned to always ask if a food is safe for her.  Alena has never felt left out or been left out from any event that has taken place at school.  Thank you for making such a tremendous difference in our lives.  All of teachers that we have met have had such a tremendous impact on us as a family, and also on how we deal with CG. Thank you Marlie, Megan, Sally, Susi, Elianne, Emily, Connie, Megan, Sarah, Jenn, Sarah, Chris, Sundance, Laurie, Michelle and everyone else at this wonderful school.  Sorry if forgot to mention a person, it is not on purpose let me know :)

I am still here...

Hi there - I am still here. It has been a crazy couple of weeks around here. School Play, Alena's Do Jump! performance, beach vacation, work,appointments with both girls...I know, all excuses but really has been crazy. So one may wonder, what happened to my New Year's resolution one post a week...maybe I should have stated that this means 52 posts a year?! ;) I surely will achieve that number :)))

Monday, June 7, 2010

Recall for undeclared MILK, SOY, WHEAT - Wally's Nuthouse various Varieties

Wally's Nut House, LLC of Oak Grove, MO, is recalling its 16 ounce packages of Tailgate Crunch Mix, Sweet Cajun Heat Mix, Country Western Mix, Cranberry Raisin Mix, Party Mix, Hot 'n Spicy Mix, and Louisiana Cajun Mix snack mixes because they may contain undeclared milk, soy, and/or wheat. People who have allergies to milk, soy, and wheat run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products.

Better Made Snack Foods recall 3 oz Better Made Special Original Potato Sticks for undeclared DAIRY

Better Made Snack Foods Issues an Allergy Alert on Undeclared Dairy in the 3-Ounce Better Made Special Original Potato Sticks
Sun, 30 May 2010 23:09:00 -0500

Better Made Snack Foods of Detroit, Michigan is issuing a voluntary recall only of their Better Made 3-ounce Original Potato Sticks because it may contain undeclared dairy. People who have allergies to dairy run the risk of an allergic reaction.       

Monday, May 24, 2010

The girls are making pizza for "Kids Night Out"

I am sure you know by now that the four of us love Kids Night Out at Alena's school. Our activity in the afternoon of the day of "Kids Night Out" is to make the pizza. I generally make the dough alone or with help of the girlies, and the girls put all the toppings on the pizza. Last Friday I took pictures (yeah we have our camera back...) of the girls making the pizza :) - Pepperoni and Asparagus it was very, very delicious :)))

Mia Rose at the Trapze

More...Do Jump! Performance 5/24/2010

A little more....

Mia Rose's Do Jump! Performance

The proud mother (that is me) would like to share Mia Rosie's performance today. Thank you!!!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Allergy Alert on Undeclared Milk in "Gourmet Cookie Mixes"

This was just released!

Rise 'N Roll Bakery Issues Allergy Alert on Undeclared Milk in "Gourmet Cookie Mixes"
Thu, 20 May 2010 16:48:00 -0500

Rise 'N Roll Bakery of Middlebury, IN, is recalling all varieties of its 20 ounce jars of Rise 'N Roll Specialties "Gourmet Cookie Mixes" because they may contain undeclared Milk products. People who have allergies to Milk run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consume these products.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Recall undeclared MILK, soy & wheat Dominguez Family Entrrprises Mexican Bread Product

Please click on link for details on this recall

Dominguez Family Enterprises Issues Allergy Alert on Mexican Bread Product
Tue, 18 May 2010 15:43:00 -0500

Dominguez Family Enterprises, of Hood River, Ore., is voluntarily recalling three Mexican bread products due to undeclared Whey (Milk), Soy Flour, and Wheat. People who have an allergy or severe sensitivity to Whey (Milk), Soy Flour, and Wheat could run the risk of serious or life-threatening allergic reaction if they consumed these products.       

Thursday, May 13, 2010

RECALL: BIGS original salted & roasted sunflower seeds contains undeclared MILK product

This recall was just issued

Minnesota Firm Issues Recall Due to Undeclared Dairy Allergen in Certain Sunflower Seeds
Thu, 13 May 2010 12:37:00 -0500

Ryt-way Industries LLC of Lakeville, MN is voluntarily recalling select BIGS ® Original Salted & Roasted Sunflower Seeds because they may contain dairy ingredients that were not declared on the packaging. The product is packaged in 5.35oz plastic bags with BEST BY Dates of 30MAY2011 and 31MAY2011 with an individual bag UPC code 896887002196.


Monday, May 10, 2010

Happy Mother's Day...some thoughts from this mothership :)

Lately I have been thinking a lot about life. Life in general and about getting older. The girls getting older, me getting older and that contrary to my thoughts a couple of years ago I actually enjoy it. Okay - the girls getting older that is :) I also enjoy my added experiences that come along with aging, but I certainly do not enjoy the additional grey hair, wrinkles etc. Now that I have that straightend out let me tell you what I have been thinking. And yes, this post has nothing to do with Galactosemia. Just plain old mothership thoughts...

Alena first started Preschool when she was 3. My cute little pumpkin and I looked around in the school wow all those huge kids. Yes, I kid you not I registered all kids older than 3 or 4 as huge kids. Those huge kids certainly were not cute, only the littles. I was all consumed by melancholy realizing that soon my cute tiny little pumpkin would be one of those huge kids. Oh, what would I do??? Now fast forward to 2010. Alena is now in Kindergarten at the same school. The Kindergartener's are the oldest children attending the school. Oh, and how cute they are. Every single one of them and there are also the little kids. Even Mia Rosie is no longer a "little". I am so excited that Alena is now a big kid. She is learning to read and write. We can have great conversation, we talk about books, animals, nature....oh all the wonderful things. It is so exciting to see her as well as Mia Rosie grow, and see how they develop into these wonderful individuals. All the previous years just weave into this fantastic if I could only figure out how to add music to this post because surely I would be playing "Tapestry" by Carole King...Yes, I am not kidding - I totally would and I love Carole King :) - There is one side note I would like to make...the thought of Galactosemia, or metabolic disorder never crosses my mind. There is no difference between our children, and somebody else's children...

I hope you all had a lovely Mother's Day.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

What a day!!!

What a day yesterday was. First Doc appointment, next fun lunch, next visit to Ikea to get pillow case for Alena's school play, next rest, and the last plan of the day was for Alena to go to Do Jump! class. Well, that did not happen and instead we ended up visiting the ER at Legacy Emmanuel Children's Hospital. What happened? Well, Alena was so excited for class that she went ahead to go to the car. She jumped off the front step, slipped, and fell right into the front step. There was blood everywhere, a huge gauge in her chin...really, not just a scrape but the skin was gaping open. Just as I was trying to figure out how to stop the bleeding, our friend stopped by...she calmed all three of us down. Well, she calmed Alena and me down. Mia Rosie was just so good...all she said was "I don't want Ninni to be hurt.." Our friend ran back home, put gauze on the wound, and taped it up. I then took both girls to the ER and was prepared for it to take hours. Was I wrong! We got there, we checked in, Alena got her bracelet (much to her delight), and within 5 minutes we were seen by the nurses. Another 5 minutes later the physician came in and took a look. No shots were necessary - as thankfully all vacinations are up-to-date - as they applied a topical anestetic. It was great because I think Alena's greatest fear is to get a shot...after 30 minutes they were ready to sew it up. One of the nurses was so kind to take Mia Rose along to the Nurse Station, and I stayed and held Alena's hands. I have had to look the other any case, the physician used a very small needle and sutured it all up. It took about six stiches. The physician, as well as all the nurses were just amazing.

I have to say that this really shook me up. It just takes a split second for something to happen. I am still a bit shaken-up. Thankfully Alena is all better. I got her early from school today and all she wanted to do was get a movie. So you know what she picked at Movie Madness? "Princess and the Frogs" and a box of Junior Mints :) The people at Movie Madness were so nice. Alena told them what happend and they gave her the box of Junior Mints to feel better. Isn't that sweet?!

Alright here is to getting better...we have to run to pick-up Mia Rosie from school :)

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Lunch with Mia Rose

What a day! Mia Rose and I usually have fun together on our Wednesday
mornings. Not so much this morning as I had a doc appointment
scheduled for myself. Mia Rose was so good! She read her books,
played with toys...quite amazing :) In any case, I had originally
planned to take her to the Wednesday Market after the appointment but
guess what? It rained...with not enough time left to go to OMSI I
asked her what she wanted to do. "pizza" was her answer so here we are
at Hotlips Pizza on Hawthorne. Both of us had a delicious slice of
fresh yummy pizza. Yes, you read correct they also had a slice for my
little girl. Hotlips actually has vegan foccacia every day. Today's
selection was cilantro pesto, potatoes, olives, onion, and roasted
garlic. Yum! Mia Rise loved it, topped it with nutritional yeast and
ate the entire (!) slice. Ok - I admit to having had a couple of bites
but no more.

Hotlips had several locations here in Pdx. Check it out at

Have a great day!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Recall for undeclared Milk & Wheat Murphy House Brunswick Stew

This was just released...

North Carolina Firm Recalls Brunswick Stew Products due to Undeclared Allergens
Thu, 29 Apr 2010 18:06:43 -0500

The Murphy House, a Louisburg, N.C., establishment, is recalling 414 lbs. of Brunswick stew products because they contain cracker meal with undeclared allergens, wheat and milk, the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced today.       

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Sweet Potato Gnocchi

Yes, we still have sweet potatoes so this week I made for the very first time Sweet Potato Gnocchi. Doesn't it sound intersting? Well, let me tell you they don't only sound interesting but also taste delicious. Plus they are gorgeous looking :) The only thing was that I thought they were a little dense. I think the reason for that was that the sweet potatoes were not cooked all the way through and therefore still a little chunky. So note to self - cook and not bake the potatoes the next time :)

I actually found several recipes online - several of them using ricotta and since I have not yet found a viable substitute for it I used this one.

- 8 oz Sweet Potato (I used more)
- 2 cups of flower (next time I will use a little less - or maybe even more sweet potato)
- 1 Egg
- 1 clove of garlic
- salt
- pepper
- nutmeg

* Cook sweet potato until soft
* Mix sweet potato (w/o skin) with the flower
* Add the egg
* Crushed Garlic
* Salt
* Pepper
* Pinch of Nutmeg (I used 1/8 Teaspoon)
* Mix together into a dough

* Bring a large pot of water to a boil
* Divide the dough into three rolls
* Cut gnocchi about 1/2 inch or less
* Drop all of the gnocchi into the boiling water at once
* Skim the ones that are done (when they float on the surface) and put in a bowl

Serve with
* Melted Earth Balance spiced with Cinanon and Sage leaves

* Ron and I also had some Dolce Gorgonzola pieces in ours...

Please let me know if you try it out, and what you thought about it.

The credit for the recipe goes to -->

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Our little Miracle - a father's letter

Our oldest will be entering 1st grade this coming school year. We applied for a school other than our neighborhood school and it included an application process. Parent's letter of interest, self portrait by the child, recommendation from current school, etc. Ron took the job to write the parent letter of interest. In his letter he - who generally does not want to be reminded of that time - writes about Alena's first few weeks of life. Her fight and her zest for life. It brings me back to that time and yes, Alena is our little miracle I am amazed and so proud that Ron allowed himself to go back to that time. So here is a part of the letter...

"...Our little Miracle - As our new born child, Alena had a pretty rough time. One week after her birth she developed bacterial meningitis and for three weeks afterwards she was in intensive care at Emmanuel Hospital. The doctors were very clear of what she was up against and the odds of survival was not good. As parents, it was very hard to accept the fact that it was not our fight to make, it was her's alone. She survived and she became our little miracle.

It soon became apparent that she was no worse for wear from her ordeal and began to thrive. As the months passed, we found out very soon that we had a very special little girl..."

Isn't it beautiful. And yes, I am crying right now because it takes me right back to the time when I was on my knees in the chapel at the hospital not knowing whether she would survive. Ron, thank you so much for using such beautiful language...

Friday, April 16, 2010

Empowerment works :)

Mia Rose attends school two full days each week. Her school is a little different than Alena's as there is cook who makes daily meals from scratch. I previously talked about how impressed we are with the foods she eats. Fruits, veggies, seeds, beans...she loves Swiss Chard really amazing. In any case, when we picked her up yesterday the cook shared with me that they had scrambled eggs for lunch. And let me tell you Mia Rosie loves scrambled eggs ;) Anyway, but before she put one morsel of food in her mouth she asked the cook " there any cows milk in this...". Remember she just turned 4 - I am so proud, excited and just feel validated that our approach works. Both children are aware of the fact that they cannot eat anything containing milk. We keep "non-safe" items in the house, trust them and even our little one now makes sure foods are safe before she eats it.

I said it many times before, that there was a time where only "safe" foods could be found in our home. I am so thankful to our friends in Italy for showing us just how important the empowerment of our kids is. Otherwise, I am not sure if they would ask if the food is OK as they probably would just assume that everything they get is "safe" thoughts for the day :)

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Dinner with sweet potatoes...Sweet Potato Black Bean Burrito's

The last few weeks we have received sweet potatoes with every single veggie box. This is the first week that we have not received any, therefore we have been almost "swimming" in sweet potatoes. I have used a couple and served them with our Easter ham; mashed with a little bit of OJ, then baked topped with brown sugar and Earth Balance. Yummy :) But we still have so many, many left...that was until tonight. I had thought about cooking a few with black beans, ginger, and coconut milk like a curry of sorts. Today I looked again, and searched...I came up with a couple of different options that looked good to me. Sweet Potato Gnocci, and/or Sweet Potato Black Bean Burrito's. I let Ron choose and it was burritos...So a first time for me. I have never made burrito's before, but they turned out delicious. Both Alena and Mia Rose loved the filling. I served it with sliced Avocado, Tomato's (curtesy of our veggie box), Toffuti Sour Cream, rice, and a side of browned Chorizo....below is the adopted recipe (my changes are in italic) along with a link to its source. And by the way, we still have more sweet potatoes left, but unfortunately not enough to make the Gnocci. Maybe we will get some more next week ;)

Sweet Potato Black Bean Burrito
  • 5 cups peeled cubed sweet potatoes
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    2 teaspoons canola or other vegetable oil
    1 large onion
    3 large garlic cloves, minced or pressed
    1 teaspoon mild chili powder (change by me)
    2 teaspoons ground cumin
    2 teaspoons ground coriander
  • 3 cans of black beans (drained)
    3 Tablespoons fresh lemon juice
    1 teaspoon salt
    8 eight-inch flour tortillas

  • Cook sweet potatoes with a little salt and water to cover until they are soft. This takes about 10 minutes.
  • Warm up some oil in a pan and add onions, garlic, chili powder if using and a little bit of salt. Bring heat to no higher than medium and cover pan. Sautee until onions are soft and translucent --> takes about 10 minutes. Then add cumin and coriander and cook for another 2 minutes.
  • Mash the sweet potatoes, black beans, lemon juice, and salt. (The recipe also calls for cilantro but I omitted it). You can mash with a potato masher, food processor, or hand blender.
  • Add onion/garlic/spice mix to the sweet potato mash and mix it all up
  • Fill each tortilla with about 1/2 - 3/4 cup, roll it up, and place it - seam down - in a lightly oiled baking dish.
  • Cover with foil and bake for about 30 minutes.

Recipe Source: Moosewood Restaurant Low-Fat Favorites (Clarkson Potter Publishers) found on

One last thing...we had so many that I ended up freezing 5 of the burriots for lunches :) Yay for left overs....

Sometimes I worry...

No worries, I am not changing my mantra with "the glass is always half full" but sometimes I do worry. I just have it in me. I am a worrier - yes and sometimes also a warrior :) - and always, always find something to worry about. House, car, family, friends, and yes also about the girlie's. Currently I am not at the top of my game - so this is also my disclaimer for this post :). In any case, the one thing I worry about is premature ovarian failure. Really it is a small thing, but never-the-less it's there. The physicians at OHSU tested FSH levels for both girls and it seems to be within range. They also participate in a research study where other levels are tested and that is another story. So I worry, and worry but in the end there is nothing that can be done about it at this time. Only time will tell and hopefully all we be a-OK. We got years ahead of us...which is good but until then I will keep worrying about it even so I cannot change anything. But I will give it my best effort to keep the worrying about this in the future just to my little old self ;)

Remember the glass is always, always half-full. When life throws you lemons make lemonade ;)

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Recall McCormick & Co Fajitas Seasoning Mix Undeclared MILK and WHEAT

This recall was just released. Please click on Link for details.

Mccormick & Company Recalls Mccormick Fajitas Seasoning Mix Due To Unlabeled Wheat And Milk Ingredients
Thu, 08 Apr 2010 10:22:00 -0500

McCormick & Company, Incorporated (NYSE:MKC) has announced a voluntary recall of McCormick Fajitas Seasoning Mix, with UPC Code 5210002121 and "BEST BY" dates of JAN 16 12 AH and JAN 16 12 CH. McCormick Fajitas Seasoning Mix packages with these date codes contain undeclared wheat and milk ingredients.


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