Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Memories of Nannie



I lost my last grandparent yesterday. My Nannie died from pneumonia...but really she was just tired and ready to move on. She was 88. I have so many memories of her that they all get jumbled up in my mind sometimes. So, I'm going to attempt to get a few of them written down here so I don't forget them.

She was a teacher at the core of her being. She was always trying to teach someone something. It might have been how to do long division, how to crochet or how to properly make toast, but she was always teaching.

She loved Christmas. It was her favorite holiday by far, and she would plan and save all year to make christmas a huge celebration. She loved her Christmas tree and had to have it just so with lots of tinsel. Every year one of the presents she would give to me and my brother was a big box of junk food like candy bars and cookies. I would hide that box under my bed and eat from it all year.

She made the best macaroni and tomatoes, toast made under the oven broiler, chicken noodles, and canned pickles. My brother and I would eat breakfast at her house most Saturday mornings and she would make over easy eggs for me and cut them into tiny pieces.

She was a collector. For years she collected salt and pepper shakers and displayed in her living room. Later she collected photographs and had them covering every wall in her home. She also collected shot glasses, even though she never drank a drop.

She was a saver as well. She saved everything she thought someone might want or need later. When my daughter was born, Nannie pulled out a dress and a rattle that was mine when I was a baby. She had saved them for me.

She was an entrepreneur, and after she retired from teaching she opened up her own craft businesses. She had one called Betty's Knot shop. That was when I was pretty little, so I'm not sure what she sold, but I think it was macrame. After that she got interested in ceramics. She would pour her own slip into molds, then fire them in her own kiln and sell them unpainted or paint them herself to sell as finished products. I remember painting several pieces with her, and I remember playing with the leftover wet ceramic clay when she would be working on that part of the process. She took classes to learn new painting techniques and produced some beautiful pieces, but she never really thought they turned out well. She was her own worst critic when it came to her arts and crafts.

After the ceramics, she became interested in other crafts like crochet, cross stitch and plastic canvas. She taught me how to do most of that as well. I didn't retain a lot of that info, but I have retained a lot of the things she made for me and my kids.

She and Pa both loved traveling. When I was little they would take me with them on vacations to all parts of the US. I was too young to really remember them, but I have a few snippets of memories. Nannie would always pack lots of food for the road and we would make tiny cracker sandwiches in the backseat while Pa drove. She always sat back there with me instead of in the front seat. She collected magnets from every state she visited. I believe she has one from the 48 contiguous states.

I tried to get her and Pa to go to Hawaii with me once, but she was afraid to fly. She did finally get on an airplane when her first great-grandchild was born. She had to come see the baby.

She was very interested in family history, old photos and the family tree. A lot of her traveling was to meet with distant relatives. She and Pa attended a few family reunions every year for a while to visit with distant family.

She loved games! From as early as I can remember she was always pulling out the board games, card games, dominoes and the like for us to play after school or on Saturdays when we were at her house. We would play Concentration, Careers, Monopoly, Sorry, and a multitude of card games. At family reunions everyone would play various card games and dominoes. And the last time the kids and I came to visit we ended up playing dominoes as well. As it became harder for her to walk, even if she didn't really feel like walking to the table, she would come over to play a game.

She loved to read and loved to read to others. One of my favorite things as a kid was to have her read to me. I'd keep bringing the same books to her to read and she'd read them over and over. When I would visit her with my kids, she continued the cycle and would read to them. They loved it, too.

A few years ago I made her a birthday card called "10 Things I learned from Nannie". These were the things that made the list.

10 Things I've learned from Nannie

1. How to read and love books.
2. How to do crafts and cross-stitch
3. The love of Games and that grown-ups can play, too
4. The love of learning!
5. The love of Road trips.
6. How to raise children with patience
7. That we should know about our family’s past.
8. The love of photos.
9. That family always takes care of family.
10. How to Love unconditionally.

I'll miss you Nannie! I already do...





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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Woodinville High School Holiday Bazaar is this Saturday Dec 6th!

Happy December!

This Saturday, December 6th, the Cavegirls will be at the Woodinville High School Holiday Bazaar. This event will be our last appearance for the year! Don't miss out on your chance to stock up on some yummy treats and get cookbooks and kid's books for the readers on your shopping list. I will have all of the usual scrumptious gluten free, dairy free, paleo baked goods on hand and you'll have the opportunity to Meet The Authors!

Woodinville High School Holiday Bazaar
Saturday - December 6th, 2014  10:00AM to 4:00PM

Woodinville High School
19819 136th Ave NE
  • Woodinville, Washington




We will bring a selection of yummy treats to the festival including:

Pumpkin Muffins!
World Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies ;)
Chocolate Cupcakes
Coconut Cupcakes
Cinnamon Coffee Cake Muffins
Chocolate Chip Scones
Snickerdoodle Cookies


Also, I'll have copies of all 4 Northwest Cavegirls Cookbooks:

   

Bake
Sides, Salads and Starters
Breakfast
Entrees

And copies of our children's books:

   

The Spy Who Quacked
The Case of the Pilfered Peanuts
The Duck Flew Over the Kookaburra's Nest
Spirit Visions



Drop by, sample some yummy treats and browse the acres of cool stuff. I hope to see you all there!
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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Brownies!!!

Yes, Brownies really do need to have 3 exclamation points. :) 

Who doesn't love a good brownie? It's chocolaty, sweet, part crunchy, part gooey and all yummy. 





For the last couple of summers, I've been a volunteer at a local Girl Scout camp and have been assisting the food team in creating allergy friendly outdoor cooking recipes. The camp teaches the participants how to use a Dutch Oven, Box Oven, Propane Stove, and Hobo Stove over the course of the program. I've been experimenting with these types of outdoor cooking methods on my own to find yummy Paleo or at least GF, DF recipes that work great for these alternative cooking styles. Through my experimentation I've managed to find several recipes that work for various allergies. All of them work well when cooked in a regular home oven and when you are diligent with your charcoal, they all work well in a box oven as well. 

Recently my daughter and her Girl Scout troop held a Box Oven cooking workshop where they showed other girls how to make and use a box oven to bake brownies. One of the other troop moms spent many hours experimenting with the coals to find the perfect way to bake these brownies in the amount of time we had available for the workshop. What she found was that the coals must be totally white before you start baking. With the proper coals your brownies bake in the usual 45 minutes; however,  if you jump the gun on the coals, your brownies will take much much longer to firm up and be cooked through. In a camping situation, sometimes this doesn't make much difference, but knowing the proper way was crucial for our workshops. Our troop has made and used box ovens on several of our camping trips and I've documented that here. Take a look and make your own oven to use when you camp or just in your own back yard for fun. 


Here are 3 different brownie recipes that I've created to fit various needs. All are Gluten Free, Dairy Free, Soy Free and Nut Free. One is also granulated sugar free and one is egg free. Hopefully you'll find one you'll love.

Gluten Free Brownies (GF, DF, Nut Free)
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 ½ cup sugar (coconut palm sugar or other granulated sugar)
1 tsp. baking soda

½ tsp. salt 
3 eggs
3/4 cup liquid (water, coconut milk or other milk)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C miniature marshmallows

Mix all ingredients then pour into an 8x8 brownie pan. Bake at 350F for about 40 minutes.

Gluten Free Egg Free Brownies (GF, DF, Nut Free, Egg Free)
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
1 ½ cup sugar (coconut palm sugar or other granulated sugar)
1 tsp. baking soda

½ tsp. salt 
2/3 cup coconut oil - melted
3/4 cup liquid (water, coconut milk or other milk)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C miniature marshmallows

Mix all ingredients then pour into an 8x8 brownie pan. Bake at 350F for about 40 minutes.

Paleo Brownies (GF, DF, Nut Free)
1/2 cup coconut flour
1/2 cup cocoa powder
3/4 cup honey
1 tsp. baking soda

½ tsp. salt 
3 eggs
1/2 cup liquid (water, coconut milk or other milk)
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C miniature marshmallows

Mix all ingredients then pour into an 8x8 brownie pan. Bake at 350F for about 40 minutes.




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Thursday, November 6, 2014

Come See Us at the St. Brendan's Holiday Craft Fair Nov. 8/9

Happy November Folks!

It's Holiday Fair Season and the Cavegirls are jumping in head first! We have several upcoming Festivals, Bazaars and Craft Fairs on our schedule and we hope to see you at many of them. 

Next up is the St. Brendan's Holiday Craft Fair on Saturday November 8th -9th at St. Brendan's Catholic School in Bothell. I'll have all the usual yummy baked goods on hand as well as cookbooks and the kids' books. Hope you can drop by and say Hi.

St. Brendan's Holiday Craft Fair
Saturday - November 08, 2014  9:00AM to 5:00PM
Sunday - November 09, 2014  Noon to 4:00PM


St. Brendan's Catholic School

  • 10049 NE 19th St
  • Bothell, Washington 98011





















We will bring a selection of yummy treats to the festival including:

Pumpkin Muffins!
World Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies ;)
Chocolate Cupcakes
Banana Bread
Coconut Cupcakes
Cinnamon Coffee Cake Muffins
Chocolate Chip Scones
Snickerdoodle Cookies


Also, I'll have copies of all 4 Northwest Cavegirls Cookbooks:

   

Bake
Sides, Salads and Starters
Breakfast
Entrees

And copies of our children's books:

   

The Spy Who Quacked
The Case of the Pilfered Peanuts
The Duck Flew Over the Kookaburra's Nest
Spirit Visions



Drop by, sample some yummy treats and browse the acres of cool stuff. I hope to see you all there!
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Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Woodinville Holiday Craft Fair Is This Saturday Nov. 1st!

Happy Fall Folks!

It's Festival Season and the Cavegirls are jumping in head first! We have several upcoming Festivals, Bazaars and Craft Fairs on our schedule and we hope to see you at many of them. 

Thanks to all of you who dropped by the booth at the Harvest Festival. We had a great time meeting people, talking about paleo baking and lifestyle and watching the ducks in the pond behind our booth. 

Next up is the SEPAC Woodinville Holiday Craft Fair on Saturday November 1st from 9am to 4pm at Woodmore Elementary School in Bothell. I'll have all the usual yummy baked goods on hand as well as cookbooks and the kids' books. Hope you can drop by and say Hi.

Woodinville Holiday Craft Fair
November 1st, 9:00am to 4:00pm
Woodmore Elementary School
12225 NW 160th St.
Bothell, WA



We will bring a selection of yummy treats to the festival including:

Pumpkin Muffins!
World Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies ;)
Chocolate Cupcakes
Banana Bread
Coconut Cupcakes
Cinnamon Coffee Cake Muffins
Chocolate Chip Scones
Snickerdoodle Cookies


Also, I'll have copies of all 4 Northwest Cavegirls Cookbooks:

   

Bake
Sides, Salads and Starters
Breakfast
Entrees

And copies of our children's books:

   

The Spy Who Quacked
The Case of the Pilfered Peanuts
The Duck Flew Over the Kookaburra's Nest
Spirit Visions

Drop by, sample some yummy treats and browse the acres of cool stuff. I hope to see you all there!

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Sunday, October 5, 2014

The Northwest Cavegirls will be at the Bothell Country Village Harvest Festival

Happy Fall Folks!

It's Festival Season and the Cavegirls are jumping in head first! We have several upcoming Festivals, Bazaars and Craft Fairs on our schedule and we hope to see you at many of them. 

First on the agenda is the Bothell Country Village Harvest Festival.  Stroll the grounds decorated with corn stalks and pumpkins while you enjoy unique craft booths featuring one-of-a-kind items made by local artisans. Paint a pumpkin! Pumpkins and paints are included. Also, face painting, pony rides, train rides and much more!The Eclectic Cloggers will be performing on Saturday in addition to other live entertainment throughout the weekend!

Bothell Country Village Harvest Festival
October 11th & 12th
11:00am to 5:00pm

Harvest Festival at Country Village

We will bring a selection of yummy treats to the festival including:

Pumpkin Muffins!
World Famous Chocolate Chip Cookies ;)
Chocolate Cupcakes
Lemon Muffins
Coconut Cupcakes
Cinnamon Coffee Cake Muffins
Chocolate Chip Scones
and I might even get crazy and bring a few pecan pies!


Also, I'll have copies of all 4 Northwest Cavegirls Cookbooks:



Bake
Sides, Salads and Starters
Breakfast
Entrees

And copies of our children's books:


   

The Spy Who Quacked
The Case of the Pilfered Peanuts
The Duck Flew Over the Kookaburra's Nest
Spirit Visions

Drop by, sample some yummy treats, listen to some live music, and browse the acres of cool stuff. I hope to see you all there!

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Saturday, September 27, 2014

The Northwest Cavegirls Now Have Four Cookbooks!

Well, folks, you ask and we deliver! We've gotten requests for a book compiling our recipes into print and eBooks format; so, we've put together several full color books of our favorite recipes. All books are now available on Amazon and at our local Festival and Craft Show appearances. Get yours today!
 Our first book, The Northwest Cavegirls Bake, features cookie, cupcake, muffin, scone and pie recipes, many of which have never before been published and are exclusive to this book. We've included many colorful photographs of these tasty treats as well.  The Northwest Cavegirls Bake, is available in Kindle or Print formats from Amazon. If you have Amazon Prime, you can borrow the eBook for free, otherwise it is available for only $2.99; the print version is only $11!
 
Our second book, Sides, Salads and Starters, is available in Kindle format from Amazon for only $2.99 or the print version can be purchased for only $11 ! Get your copy of this full color book containing more than 40 tasty vegetable, salad and appetizer recipes today! 
 
Our third book, Breakfast, is available in Kindle ebook format from Amazon for only $2.99 or the print versioncan be purchased for only $11 ! Get your copy of this full color book containing more than 40 tasty pancake, waffle, muffin, "cereal" and smoothie recipes today! 


Our fourth book, Entrees, is available in Kindle eBook format from Amazon for only $2.99 or the print version can be purchased for only $11 ! Get your copy of this full color book containing more than 40 tasty meat, "pasta", casserole and soup recipes today! 

As we continue to move forward, we hope to compile more books featuring topics such as "Freezer Meals", "Snacks" "Kid Friendly Paleo Foods", "Paleo Dinner Party Ideas", "Paleo Meal Plans" and many more. What kind of book would you like to see us put together? Is there a topic you're most interested in seeing published? Give us your ideas and we'll go to work making them a reality for you.

We're having such fun on this adventure and love sharing our journey and the things we've learned along the way. We hope you find it nearly as exciting as we do, and we hope you continue to let us know what we can do to make your Paleo lifestyle even more fulfilling.

Stay tuned to see what us crazy Cavegirls do next!

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