A few things I want to note:

First off, the photos from my garden are my effort to “notice the good things”, as my therapist encourages me to do (since I am all-consumed with the badness of ME). So, my blog might be:

…moan…bitch…whinge…
[garden-of-good-things intermission]
…whine…cry…wail…

My husband is a landscaper and has crafted an oasis here in the city. One silver lining from this illness: I have literally stopped to smell the roses (or lilies). In the past, I never took much notice of what he planted where or when. I was too busy working. Who has time to look at plants when there are P&Ls to pour through? Now, every time I take a gander through our garden, something new is happening. Since I am housebound, each new bloom or bud is breaking news. The lives of bugs and birds are my realty shows.

Also, yesterday I realised that there are ads on some of my posts (gasp!). This is WordPress’s way of paying their bills and is not my choice. I can have a “no-ad blog“, but it costs $30/year and I really don’t want to spend the money. However, please let me know if it is really bothersome to your reader experience and I will reconsider that decision. 🙂

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Simple Pleasures (+ amazing gluten-free, dairy-free, seedy cracker recipe)

A few great things happened this week.

First, today, the sun came out.

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Second, birds finally found my feeder:

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Third, after all these months, my husband has given me back the joy of texture:

I was dying for some sort of crunch, some bite ~ but not like raw celery… Something heavier, something that could stand in for bread or a substantial cracker~ that could hold a piece of salami or almond butter. I have had it up to here with soft foods, fruit, raw vegetables and nuts. My husband, bless his helpful soul, has perfected a recipe.

First he tried this one (beware: if you make it, use half the salt or less), but I didn’t want to rely so heavily on oats since my doctor doesn’t even want me eating any and is only making an exception for my breakfast granola/porridge since I whined so much.

Then he tried this one, minus the garlic powder so it could go savoury or sweet. However, they were quite… pungent. That was the only way I could think to describe them. … Too earthy. I was afraid they would overpower a simple topping like jam.

Third time’s a charm! He melded the two to make his own recipe. He promises they are quick and easy if you own a food processor (I have to go to a different floor, close the door to whatever room I’m in and hold my hands over my ears ~ that’s how ridiculously loud ours is). I have them with almond butter and banana and a bit of honey in the morning or avocado and chicken and some olive tapenade for lunch… They’d even be delicious with Nutella, but I’m staying away.

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1 cup gluten-free oats
1 cup pumpkin seeds, raw and unsalted
1 cup sunflower seeds, raw and unsalted
1/4 cup sesame seeds
1/2 cup raw almonds
2 tbs coconut flour
2 tbs flax seed meal
1 1/2 tsp salt (you might want a bit more, say 2 tsp)
1/2 tsp baking soda
8 oz water
5 tbs olive oil

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Blend all dry ingredients in food processor until mixture resembles flour. Add water and oil to “flour” and make dough. Roll out to 1/8″ thick on parchment paper on two baking trays. Score the dough into squares or rectangles or whatever and bake for 30-35 minutes.

The final simple pleasure is: I found heaven in a fatty jar. I bought this coconut oil based on the Amazon reviews. I didn’t think my husband had even seen it yet. One night, he made some chard and fish. I said, “Why is this chard so good?” I was worried that he had sauteed it in butter because it was far more flavourful than the food I’ve been eating lately. “I used that coconut oil,” he says. “Why is the fish so good? Did you use a different seasoning?” “Coconut oil, again.” The next night we (he) cooked chicken breast in it… freakin’ delicious! Now I’m going to go slather it all over my skin, too, like the reviewers on Amazon recommend. Not really. Well, maybe.

Gratitude for the little things. 🙂