Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Diseased in D.C

Hmmm...not quite as romantic as Sleepless in Seattle, but it's kinda got a ring to it... :)

So, I'm really not the type to broadcast my health problems. Generally, if there's something wrong with me, few people know it. I'm just not the type that likes people worrying, or babying me, or announcing my life story from the pulpit... :) But as my close friends and family, I think you need to be in the loop on this one because it might slightly affect you and/or our relationship. Well, at least our eating relationship...and since I'm quite the food person...:)

ANYWAY, for 8 years I've been dealing with bloating, tummy pains, and other crazy symptoms that you really don't want to know anything about...promise. :) I was diagnosed with IBS, and have just gotten used to discomfort. But after a routine physical last month, and some tests, and a specialist, I've been diagnosed with Celiac Sprue Disease. With WHAT? Celiac Sprue. I'm still learning myself, but apparently it's an autoimmune disease where eating even trace amounts of gluten causes your body to attack itself. The main victim is the small gets swollen, and the little finger-like villi that transport nutrients get destroyed, and so your body doesn't get the nutrients it needs. Apparently it not only causes all the digestive problems and headaches I've been dealing with for so long, but it can also cause other nasty things if left untreated, like osteoporosis, anemia, arthritis, colon cancer...etc...etc. Fun, right? :) No biggie, we'll treat it. But here's the kicker. The only treatment is to change over to a permanent "gluten-free lifestyle" (don't you love the word "lifestyle"...makes it so much more FUN than a "diet" :)) Gluten is pretty much wheat, meaning I will no longer be able to eat... 70% of what you find at a grocery store :) I quizzed the doctor hard, asking how strict I needed to be, and if the diet was just to control symptoms--let's be honest, any way out I would've taken it. But apparently it's important, and even tiny amounts of gluten can cause a damaging flare-up that lasts for months. The really, really hard part for me is not giving up the junk's the cooking. Cooking is something I LOVE and something that I feel like I'm somewhat talented at. I LOVE whipping up tasty new concoctions. But, recipes just aren't quite the same without...flour? :) Ah pity party here. I'll just be busy testing alternative flours, and altering recipes, and astounding everyone with my gluten-free goodness. :) I'll be needing testers for my experiments of course... :)
It honestly could be a lot worse, and I just keep reminding myself of that. I feel blessed that I had a doctor sharp enough to find the problem before it causes...problems. :)

Anyway, I appreciate your love and support. It'll be an interesting transition. But the real reason I'm telling you this is so that you're not offended if we're hanging out and I don't eat something, or if I ask you to list off every tiny ingredient in something you made, or if I order something really weird when we "do lunch", or other such craziness. I think I'm going to start the diet March 1st (assuming I can meet with a good dietitian by then). In the meantime, you can find me on the Dorito and junk food aisle of each and every supermarket in the area! :)
OH and if any of you know anyone who has Celiac and has yummy recipes, tips, tricks... all would be greatly appreciated! :)

A Valentine Wedding

We were in South Carolina over the weekend to see Brian's brother, Allen, marry his sweetheart, Rachel. We had a great time, and are so excited for the happy couple! We wish them the very best of everything!! (And, yep, as you'll see in the pictures...Allen wore a kilt! Pretty unusual, but I think it's cool that he was brave enough to do exactly what he wanted on his special day. Let's hear it for leg hair and kilt hose! :))

And what wedding would be complete without my adorable nieces?

Surprise Dinner for Two

I really couldn't love my husband more. Happy Valentines Bri.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Our Little Italian Villa request, here's some pictures of our bedroom. Let me know what you think--just remember, if it's truly hideous it is your patriotic duty to let me know! (Hmm...maybe not "patriotic"... "civic?" "friendly?" ... I'm stumped. Let's just say it's of the utmost importance.) I've hit the point where I've stared at it for so long, and fussed with it for so long, that I can't even see it straight anymore! I like unique and different, but I don't want too off the wall...and with my creations, that's always a definite possibility!

Monday, February 2, 2009


Hi everyone! I'm back from my brief disappearance. (I know...I know...some of you are thinking, "Huh...she left?" Others are thinking, "Her posts are always so long and rambling...after 3+ weeks, what am I in for?" Others, who are so sweet and loved, kinda sorta missed me, right?:) ) I actually had to take off to Utah unexpectedly. My Nan (grandma on my mom's side) passed away. She's been fighting cancer since July, and in the end it went really fast. My mom called the night of the 10th, and the next morning I was on an airplane at 7am. Nan is an awesome lady. She's a gourmet chef (seriously...can't even begin to do her cooking justice), a perpetual party planner, and best of all, she is constantly serving other people (I say is and not was because I am oh-so-confident she is on the other side continuing the work she was doing here). Her favorite thing ever was working as a temple worker in the Bountiful Temple. She, of course, wasn't perfect (he he he...she could cuss out my Pa like nobody's business if the mood hit), but she sure is an amazing person, example and grandmother, and will be so missed.

I ended up staying in Utah a total of 2 1/2 weeks. After the funeral I stuck around to hang out with my parents. I wanted to stay through my mom's birthday on the 28th. Even with the tough circumstances, we had a good time. Our little trio was back to raising havoc just like the good ole days! :) Ok, so "raising havoc" might not be the right words to describe what we did: eating out, baking yummy desserts, getting my hair cut, playing Yahtzee Free for All and Uno Attack, hanging out with my cute sisters, exploring new stores so I could spend wedding certificates (seriously Utahns...if you haven't been to Spoons N Spice...holy kitchen will never be the same), running errands (I have a blast just grocery shopping with my parents). Maybe not havoc, but fun just the same! I'm really blessed to have parents I consider friends.

After 2 1/2 weeks, though, it was time to head home to the other person I love too too much. This is where I'm going to brag, so bear with me...but my husband is pretty darn amazing. When we got back to our apartment, he opened the door and I smelled...what could it be? No way! Cleaner? Yes...the apartment was as clean as I'd ever seen it. And I'm not talking tidy. He actually deep cleaned! In my amazement, I kept "casually noticing" (no...not checking...I was not checking...just noticing!) all these places I thought there was no way he would have thought to clean, but lo and behold...clean! All of them...from the top of the fridge, to the weird spot on the toilet by the bolts...he even mopped floors. I was stunned. I mean, I knew he was good, but THAT good? With no hints?! Who is this guy? As if that wasn't enough, there was a dozen long stem red roses in a vase on the table, and a delicious homemade Mexican dinner heating up in the oven! Homemade pork enchiladas Cafe Rio style! Can you believe this guy? I tell you what, I've got quite the keeper. I keep telling him and my parents that if they don't stop spoiling me, I'm going to be...well spoiled. Ruined. Turned into a monster. But neither party seems to want to listen, so watch out! There is a crazily spoiled creature on the loose, and she might just be headed your way!

Since I got back, we've dove into basketball season full throttle. Brian and I will both be practicing once a week, and having games on Saturdays. We're so so so so so excited. And, our last bit of exciting news... (drum roll please.........................) We finally decorated our bedroom! Woo hoo!!! Desk...check. Antiquey desk chair...check. Mirror, shelves, pictures, lamps...check. Killer bedspread...check. Best of all, for my birthday Brian surprised me with my favorite print all framed. The Singing Butler. Perfect.

That's the update from here. Happy February everyone! Hope you're all doing well!