Gluten Free Banana Bread, YUM


Okay, so now that I entered my 50’s, I realized that your body definitely changes over time. This means that you have to put in extra effort to take care of yourself. I was always able to eat whatever I wanted but as of late, I noticed certain foods are affecting me differently so I have been doing trial by error and the elimination process. I find that gluten free foods are definitely beneficial to my diet. Oh how I love banana bread!!

Every little bit helps!

Ingredients

  • 2 cups gluten free flour mix
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp cinnamon
  • 1/2 tsp nutmeg
  • 3 eggs
  • ¾ half and half
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • ½ cup vegetable oil
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • 3 bananas, ripe and mashed

Instructions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.

You can use either a 9 inch loaf pan or 4 small individual loaf pans (I like the individual ones so I can freeze them and take them out when I need one or give to a friend).

Whisk together the dry ingredients of 2 cups gluten free flour blend, 2 tsp baking powder, 1 tbsp of cinnamon, 1/2 tsp of nutmeg, 1 tsp baking soda, and ½ tsp salt. Set aside.

In a separate bowl, mix 3 eggs, ¾ cup milk, 1 teaspoon vanilla extract, and ½ cup vegetable oil, 1 tbsp of maple syrup, and ¼ cup sugar.

Combine the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients then add the 3 mashed bananas to the batter. Stir until well mixed.

Bake at 350 degrees F for 45-55 minutes or until the top of the bread is lightly golden.

Check the bread after 40 minutes. Take either a tooth pick or butter knife and pierce to see if any batter sticks to either. I usually watch to see if the top of the loaves turn golden brown and base my cooking time on that.

Awesome when served with butter!!!

This is my third time making these but it finally came out exactly how I anticipated it would!

Nutrition Information:

 SERVING SIZE:

 1 (12 servings total)

Amount Per Serving: 

CALORIES: 226TOTAL FAT: 11gSATURATED FAT: 1gTRANS FAT: 0gUNSATURATED FAT: 9gCHOLESTEROL: 48mgSODIUM: 310mgCARBOHYDRATES: 28gFIBER: 1gSUGAR: 8gPROTEIN: 5g

This data is provided by Nutritionix and is an estimate only.

I can breathe (Not related to COVID)


This post is not related to COVID. We are surrounded by it. It has touched every single one of our lives in every way, so let’s leave Mr. Rona out of this once.

Not only can I breathe, but I can think so clearly now. I’m not sure how this happened but it took place over the past two years. The apprehensive feelings I’ve had my whole life disappeared. I stopped second guessing my ability to function independently and create my own happiness.

Why is it that we believe that we need others to go through every single motion in life? Sometimes, yes to a degree but when it comes down to it, eating alone, going to a movie alone, or taking a trip alone is not only exciting but empowering.

I can’t believe this but I remember the first time I went to the movies by myself. I was in my late 20’s(whoa 29 to be exact) and it was in Elmsford or Pleasantville NY but when I Googled Pleasantville, an artsy theater came up so things must have changed over time I’m thinking it may have been Elmsford. My kids weren’t even born yet! The movie was, The Perfect Storm with George Clooney. My ex was a cop at the time and he worked crazy hours so I had to take it upon myself to do this one on my own.

This is going to sound so silly but I want you to see how I felt when I did this. It might sound like something so trivial to you, but to me and others this is huge. Going to a movie alone?? Now the thing is, I usually can’t remember anything. I have a HORRIBLE memory or at least I thought I did until recently and things started coming back to me. So, here I am sitting in the movie theater parking lot staring at the entrance, watching couples go in, boyfriend and girlfriend, girlfriends, husband and wives and here I sit thinking, “people are going to think I’m a complete loser going into a movie theater by myself.” Am I completely and utterly ridiculous for thinking this? No, because it is engrained in our brains that this is the norm, like brushing our teeth. I’m not going to lie, I was so nervous. What are people going to think about me? Are they going to stare? Am I going to trip and the carpet or the stairs? Should I get popcorn? What if I have to go to the bathroom? Oh, forget about me thinking, “is someone going to attack me when I leave the movie theater or hiding under my car?” Nah, that was the furthest thing from my mind. Screw the serial killer. I was more worried about what people were thinking about me being alone. But, I did it. It was invigorating and empowering. BUT, for some reason I didn’t make a habit of it until did I reached my late 40’s. It was strange. I kind of crawled back up into my whole of insecurity land and lost that gumption to do it again. I owe it to the relationships I was in after my divorce. People and events can make you feel like you cannot survive and be happy alone. Even when I was single and enjoying it, people told me, “you are eventually going to want to grow old with someone or you need a partner, a companion to do things with.” Um, non actually I don’t.

Why do we feel that we need a partner to make us happy, to survive, to make us feel complete? I truly feel that for some of us that it’s just the cycle we were born into and what we are conditioned to believe is normal. We don’t know any better and anything else out of the norm is scary for us. That’s okay, but what happens one day when there isn’t that significant other to do things with? Whether it’s death, unfaithfulness, abuse, or even that you two are not compatible anymore, etc., then what? Are you going to crawl under a rock and die?

My thought is, I don’t want to be with someone just for the sake of needing to for whatever reason. I or you have to want to be with someone who you don’t need anything from and that includes happiness.

When you are in a relationship that gives you one iota or inclination of doubt about the two of you or your self preservation, re-think it. I’m not saying make any haste decisions but really dig down deep and think about what it is that gives you that nudge of doubt, sadness, or unhappiness that you’re feeling.

You have the ability to change that and it is possible to be in a relationship and make yourself happy first. Take care of you and all that isn’t right in your being and fix it.

This post may sound like I am single but I’m not. I am in a relationship that gives me control of my own happiness. He is part of the puzzle that made this happen for now (it took me a lifetime to find him). If things change, then I will take it as it comes. We don’t live together, he has his own kids, I have mine. A lot of our likes aren’t the same but that’s okay too, we both full-fill something in one another that gives us balance and to us that’s all that matters.

You can find that balance also but it requires figuring out exactly what is it that you want out of life for yourself and nobody else. It might take some time like it did for me but if you don’t start processing the thoughts about what it is that really makes you happy, then things will never change.

Good luck!

You’ll have one of those days DV survivor. It’s okay, just breathe.


I’d say a majority of my posts, probably all my posts are optimistic, upbeat, positive, and reinforcing, but Friday was a pretty bad day for me.

It set me back quite a bit. I’m not going to go into details because in the end it doesn’t matter. What matters is that being a DV survivor is how you bounce back and realize that you’ll have moments like this in life.

I haven’t had a bad day like that in approximately 14 months. The one on Friday was over a miscommunication between myself and another individual. The screaming began. Not me but him. I froze. My legs were like cement. I felt like I was actually going to faint. I listened and barely spoke and after that 3 minutes of that horrific moment, just like that, it was over.

I don’t post about being a domestic violence survivor because number one, I hate pity parties. I hate dwelling. I hate reliving those time periods in my life. But now it feels different. I feel like I am in a place where I can discuss it to a degree without completely going into a catatonic state.

Without a doubt in my mind, PTSD and domestic violence go hand in hand. I’m getting better since Friday, I am doing things to try and forget it. I’m able to hold back the tears, the ache inside, the pains in my stomach, and the thoughts of it are diminishing.

You have to draw a line in your mind with you on one side and the incident on the other. Look over that line. Realize that you are on the safe side and you recognize that you are okay standing where you are. Look at that incident like you are watching it on tv. After it’s over, shut it off. It’s over and done with. You are standing over that line and you are okay and safe.

Next, look around you. You can breathe. You’re alive.  You are going to have times in your life that even though you aren’t in that domestic violence relationship you were once in, you will encounter times that are going to make you feel like you are.

This probably sounds like I am allowing people to treat me the way I use to, no. This is called everyday life and people are going to have heated arguments, disagreements, and even though it affects you so severely, those doing the screaming and yelling don’t have any clue. They don’t know what you’ve been through. But you do and you can overcome any blip in the screen. Your heart is beating and you are okay.

How did I handle this you ask? Well after he left the room, I stood with my feet glued to the floor. It took at least a minute to move my rock feeling feet and rubber band legs again. I am resilient and I can get through this I said to myself. At first I was angry, no tears, just rage building up inside me. I was disappointed with myself. Then the tears and sobbing started. This is the first time someone made me feel like this since I left my last relationship 14 months ago. I felt like I needed to go runaway and hide like I’ve done before.  I sat there and didn’t know what to do.

Right then, he walked in the room and sat down. Of course I was speechless. What do I do? How am I going to handle this again? But it wasn’t an “again.” He said to me that he wanted to apologize. He didn’t mean to scream at me like that. I felt a little relieved, not a lot, just a little. I responded with what I had to say and explained myself. It was just a measly miscommunication over something so trivial. I don’t think, I know he realized the way the way he approached me was uncalled for. We talked and I cried. I couldn’t help it. Through the sobs, I told him I am a strong woman. I am independent.  He looked at me like I was nuts and didn’t understand what I was getting at.  That’s okay though. Communication helped ME understand that not every situation is the same as it was before.

Even if it was a different situation, and it was the onset of another bad relationship, I have the knowledge and strength now to know the difference and exit from any toxic relationship that has the potential of infiltrating me.

Enough said. You too can overcome and defeat anything that comes your way. Just breathe. It’s going to be okay. You’re alive and able to get it right this time. Be thankful.

 

Large Crowd Summer Menu Cookout


Happy belated 4th of July!

Sometimes it’s hard to put together a menu suitable for a large crowd. You’ll have your gluten free guest, your guest sensitive to spices, another guest who cannot tolerate garlic, and your no onions please guest. Oh and your no beef guest.

So whenever my sister and I put together our menu for the next family function, we have to take all these request into consideration. And, we love it. It gives us an opportunity to get a gathering together fast and be creative.

Remember, more isn’t always necessary because people tend to have a few cocktails beforehand and also nosh on the chips and whatever else precedes the main course.

Here is our typical summer bbq menu:

We usually start with a platter of olives and pickles, chips, celery and ranch dressing. On occasion there will be buffalo chicken wing dip, cheese and crackers, etc.,

Next, here comes the burgers, hot dogs, sausage patties, sausage and peppers, and bbq chicken. Then we have the pasta salad, corn on the cob, and deviled eggs! Yum. I’m getting hungry just writing about it.

Lol well anyway this is just a gist of some menu items you can put together pretty quick for a large crowd.

Here are some pics of our family. I hope you all had a safe and happy 4th.

It was a great 4th of July. We even camped out back in the Yert. The boys slept in their hammocks. I’ll have to try that one night. They said it was wicked comfortable.

Oh geez I almost forgot the most important part of the menu lol, the adult beverage we fell in love with. Saranac’s Moscow Mule ginger beer. If you can get your hands on one, try it. They are so good ice cold. It’s really a great summer drink.