Diets, Dinners and Desserts

We are big eaters. We love food. We love it a lot.  I’ve been cooking since I was a little girl and I know my way around the kitchen pretty well.

You’ve heard the saying,

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Well at our house we sometimes get this rule backwards.  Eating is a sport over here. An event. We love to cook and feed people and we love to hear how great the food is.  We purchase the finest whole, natural and organic ingredients. We buy our meat, hormone and antibiotic free and we practice a recipe and test it, until we get it just right. For example:  My husband’s hot wings are to die for. Seriously, they are crunchy on the outside, moist on the inside, hot, with a hint of sweet but also a hint of tangy.  He has his hot wing recipe perfected. You can ask any of our son’s basketball buds or any of his closest friends and they will tell you they are the best wings ever. We mention wings and people line up. We take this food thing very seriously.

However, most recently due to health reasons we’ve had to make some serious diet changes. My cholesterol level is off the charts, (thanks mom) and I’ve recently found that I need to exclude gluten and dairy from my diet as well (I don’t know who to thank for that.) and we agreed that losing weight would be an added bonus. We determined in June that we needed to make healthier choices. Talking about it wasn’t enough.  We thought if we chose to eat meat during only one meal a week then that would be an easy, affordable and healthy way to do both. We both are meat and potatoes kind of folks so we expected this to be a huge challenge.  What we learned was, after cutting out meat, we felt 100 times better after our meals. We had so much more energy. We didn’t miss meat as much as we thought we would and our grocery bill was much less. I had to become more creative with meal planning as well. I’m experimenting with different vegetables and changing up recipes. We were just getting in a groove when three months in I found out that I needed to cut gluten and dairy from my diet so that added challenges and restrictions that I wasn’t sure I was prepared for. I’m from the country. We use flour, butter, milk and cheese with a side of Ranch dressing on everything. I’m not going to lie. It takes some getting used to. Especially the baking.  The flour (coconut and almond) eh, still getting accustomed to the texture.  I’m learning. I will leave it at that.

Tonight’s meal consisted of Fried Cod Fish, recipe posted below,Steamed Broccoli, Mixed Rice (Brown/Jasmine cooked in Vegetable Broth) and for dessert, Chocolate Pumpkin Cake

We are still a work in progress. We’ve lost a combined 49 pounds and my cholesterol has dropped 30 points.  I think we are on a good path and will keep you posted on our progress.  We definitely feel better.IMG_2670

Breaded Cod Fillets (Recipe Modified from Original)

  • 4-5 3 oz fish fillets, fresh or frozen
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup of almond milk
  • 1 cup of gluten free panko bread crumbs
  • 1/4 cup of fresh grated parmesan cheese (omitted in my recipe)
  • 1/4 tsp of dried parsley
  • 1 tsp of dried basil
  • 1 tsp of dried oregano
  • 1 tsp of garlic powder
  • 1 tsp of salt
  • 1 tsp of fresh ground black pepper
  • 3 Tbls of extra virgin olive oilPREPARATION
  • Rinse the cod under cold water and pat dry with a paper towel.
  • In a shallow bowl whisk together the eggs and milk.
  • In another shallow bowl, mix together the breadcrumbs, cheese, parsley, basil, oregano, thyme, garlic, salt and pepper.
  • Dip the cod into the egg mixture then coat with the breadcrumb mixture.
  • Refrigerate for around a half hour.
  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan.
  • Fry the cod until golden brown. Around 4 to 5 minutes on each side.
  • Drain on a paper towel and serve.
  • Serves 4 people
  • IMG_2676

Gluten Free Chocolate Pumpkin Cake

Ingredients

Drizzle

  • 1/4 cup dark chocolate chips
  • 2 tbsp almond milk

Preheat oven to 350F. Grease and flour a square 8×8 baking pan. Alternatively you can line the bottom with unbleached parchment paper. The original recipe recommended the parchment paper.  I just greased and floured the pan and it seemed to work fine for me.

In a large mixing bowl add the milk, puree, apple sauce, eggs, and oil. Combine with awire whisk. Add the rest of the ingredients except the chocolate chips and combine. Add 1/2 cup of chocolate chips and fold.

Pour the batter into the prepared baking pan and bake for 45-55 minutes or until a cake tester comes out clean. Cool cake in the baking pan over a wire rack.

Heat the 2 tbsp of milk and add the chocolate chips. Whisk until the chocolate is melted and drizzle over the cool pumpkin cake.

You can follow my Gluten Free Pinterest Board here.  I’m always pinning new recipes. If you’re interested in following my Pinterest Veggie Board, you can follow it here.

Until we meet again, It’s just an Average Day on Everidge, Fifi

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You’ve Been Bought With a Price

Ephesians 2:19-22: Source

I have to admit that I struggle with a couple of these from time to time.  What I have learned throughout the years is this one thing.  This is important so listen up. This usually has more to do with me than with the other people. Yep. True story.  This usually happens when my expectations exceed what others can give.  My communication skills sometimes are found lacking and that usually ends up with me feeling insecure, unimportant and sometimes even unloved in my relationships. Even though we fail in our communication skills and interpersonal relationships, we still have One who loves us unconditionally. We just need to remember to whom we belong.  To the One who gave His life for us.  Once we remember that, the rest shakes out just about right.

Ephesians 2:19 Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God.

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Thanks so much for taking time out to read each entry.  It means so much to me.

It’s just an Average Day on Everidge.

Fifi

#TellHisStory

My “Accidental” Friend

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I have an “accidental” friend.  I will call her “Sofia” to protect her privacy.  She is very precious to me.  One thing that she doesn’t know is how very precious.  There are people who come and go in our lives that leave a lasting imprint. Sofia is one of those people.  The stamp that she has imprinted on my heart will forever remain.

Sofia and I, for lack of a better description, lose contact.  Sometimes for very long periods of time. Let me tell you a little more about my precious friend.

Sofia “drops” in at the church office from time to time. When people come by the church office for help we always get a copy of their ID.  We are not always free to help everyone but when we can, we do. When she first came by a couple of years ago, I made a copy of her ID and have kept a copy on file since that time. She first came seeking assistance, needing food for her children, twin babies that were hungry.  After talking to her and learning more of her history, which would make you want to hunt someone down and hurt them, my co-worker and I gave her what we could.  We got in contact with a Hispanic church in town and asked them to contact her. They would be able to offer her more assistance with food and clothing and could put her in contact with people and agencies that were better equipped to meet her needs.  The next day she came by to thank us because the church had contacted her.  Our “friendship” began that day.  Not many people come back to thank you for the assistance.  I can think of only a couple of times in my 22 years of working at the church where someone “really, really” thanked us. One particular lady  wrote us a thank you note a year later and paid us back after she got back on her feet. No one does that people. I’m telling you, in this day and time, no one does that.  It wasn’t just a hand out to that lady. It was a help in time of need.  I’ve never forgotten that.  To Sofia, it wasn’t a just a handout.  It was food in her babies mouths.

The last time she came in, over a year and a half ago, it was sleeting and freezing rain. She was wearing flip flops.  She was sick, pale and freezing. She came in that day because her purse had been stolen and she needed a copy of her ID and she knew that we had a copy.  My co-worker and I talked to her at length and gave her a little money.  I took off my new, Merrill fur lined shoes, that my aunt had given me and put them on her feet. You see, I remembered a story that a friend had told me. A story of her on a missions trip when God had told her to give her shoes to a desolate, poor woman and she didn’t obey. She has saved those shoes to this day to remind her to obey God at all times.  God told me that day to give my shoes to Sofia and I wasn’t about to let her leave without those warm, fur lined shoes.  Let me just tell ya. There is something very humbling when you kneel before someone and take your warm, fur lined shoes off and place them on their freezing, cold feet. God did something in my heart that day. The shoes fit perfectly, Sofia cried, left the office and I haven’t seen her since. Until yesterday.

She came in the office, this week, with a blanket wrapped around her tiny little body in a hoodie. This is the South. It’s still 80 degrees outside. If it’s possible, she is even frailer than the last time I saw her.   When I saw her get out of the car, I raced to the door and embraced her. She crumpled in my arms and sobbed. She has been very sick and in the hospital for reasons that I can’t explain here.  Like usual, she needed a copy of her ID. I don’t know another reason to keep that ID other than she might need another copy and it keeps her coming back.  Other copies we keep on file for just one year. I was able to help other in other ways as well.  I will tell you that Sofia is on my mind so often that I wonder if God places her on my heart so I will pray just to keep she and her children safe.  This is one of those questions I hope to have answers to in Heaven one day. I sent her on her way with her ID, a hug and a time of prayer.

Every time I have an encounter with Sofia I think of this verse:  Hebrews 13:2  Do not forget to entertain angels, for by so doing, some have unwittingly entertained angels unawares.

If you think about it, lift up Sofia and her children in prayer today. Pray for their safety and well-being. God will know you who are talking about and she could sure use an extra prayer or two.

It’s just an Average Day on Everidge.

Until we meet again, Fifi

Linking to:  Imparting Grace: Grace at Home #172

The Window of Heaven is Open, Just Pray

My mom has spent a few days in the hospital.  Tuesday proved to be a very long day. As I was leaving the hospital the first time of the day,  the clerk asked how I was and I mentioned that my mom was very sick and I was very concerned for her.  She asked me for my mom’s name, wrote her name down and said that she would pray for her.  That struck a chord with me. A complete stranger offered to pray for my mom.

Later that night, as I returned to the hospital, I happened to run into one of our church members and her brother and aunt.  They were there visiting their mother. We spoke for a while and her brother, who is a pastor, asked if he could pray for my mother. Yes, Please and right there in the hallway of the hospital, we stopped and he prayed for my mom.  Thank the Lord for His people who will take time at His nudging to pray at a moment’s notice.

Two days later. It was just an average day at the hospital. Well, I suppose it was anyway. I was sitting in my mom’s room waiting for her to get back from having a test. I was alone at this particular time and had been working on a blog post. It was quiet on the hall and I was enjoying the peace and quiet in the room. Those of you who know me, know that I get very few of those moments.  I have an app on my phone of Charles Spurgeon and had just read my devotions of the morning with mom and my sister Mary.  “If you would reach to something higher than ordinary groveling experience, look to the Rock that is higher than you, and gaze with the eye of faith through the window of importunate prayer.  When you open the window on your side, it will not be bolted on the other.” What a great thought right before you go in for a medical test. When we open the window of prayer it will not be bolted on the other side.  Jesus hears our prayers.

I was pretty amped up from my reading. Reflecting on the prayer of the parking lot clerk and our pastor friend,  when two ladies from housekeeping came in and I shared my devotional with them. We started talking about Jesus and how if we just shared Him with the people that we meet and if more people knew Him what a better place the world would be.  We had a sweet, short time talking about the Lord as they cleaned my mom’s room, we wrapped our arms around each other, prayed together and they went on their way.

My mom is doing much better. She went home from the hospital today, but we are still looking for answers to some of her medical issues.  I believe very strongly that God has answered an immediate need because people who love Him opened the window on my mom’s behalf.

This song is sung by the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir.  It’s one of my favorites right now. I hope you like it as well.

“When you open the window on your side, it will not be bolted on the other.”  Charles Spurgeon

It’s just an Average Day on Everidge.

Until we meet again, Fifi

Feel free to share this post if it has encouraged you in any way.  Have you had a prayer answered?  Please share with me!  I would love to hear how God is working in your life.  Fifi

Out With the Sad, in with the Blue.

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Well, I think the last of it is gone. Popcorn ceilings are the pits. I’m telling ‘ya.  I dislike them, oh so very  much.  We just finished  up a bedroom updo.  James scraped the nasty popcorn off the ceiling. You know dust just loves to hang on that stuff. He then put on new tape reputtied, sanded, puttied, sanded. Well, you get the picture. We then had a nice new and smooth ceiling.

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The room had previously been painted a yellowish, gold color.  It was matched “perfectly” with a swoosh in a comforter.  It is amazing though how my tastes change with the times.  The room had previously been done in red and gold tones. The bedroom suite was dark wood so I painted the bed white. The other pieces were very damaged and unsalvageable.  After Kristen moved out the room became a “junk room” of sorts.  Everything that didn’t have a home just sort of landed in there. It came to a point where I just felt sad with that room. I kept the door closed most of the time. I used the room to iron our clothes. The room was just dark and sad.

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We were under a deadline to get the room finished so we called in a couple of professionals for some last minute help.  Jared Johnson and his crew at Johnson Paintin’ Company painted the room for us. They did an awesome job and we were so glad for the extra help. We used Cumberland Fog by Behr for the walls and Ultra Pure White for the Ceiling Paint and Ultra Pure White by Behr in semi gloss for the trim.  The Shabby Chic comforter and sheets are from Target and  pillow bolster is Simply Shabby Chic as well.  I already had  the blue pillows and just threw them in for a little contrast.  I picked up the distressed mirrored dresser and bedside table at Steinmart.  They didn’t have a link for the furniture. I couldn’t find one anyway.  I love a good sale at Steinmart.  Both were on sale and the bedside table had a tiny bit of damage and I was able to get $25 more off because of that. You can’t even see it. The  curtain panels are from Lowes and we have the same panels in all three of our bedrooms. I like to have a continuous flow throughout the house.  I feel that it just makes our home more cohesive. The red blanket chest belonged to James’ Grandma Harris. I was going to paint it a different color but I think the original color adds just the right contrast to the room. I haven’t decided exactly on what pictures I want on the wall yet.  The Hunter Ceiling Fan was installed by our electrician,  Matthew Reynolds at Shocking Solutions.

Thanks for stopping by.  I hope you like our refreshed bedroom.  It’s so much calmer in the blue/gray hue.

Until next time, it’s just an average day on Everidge.

Fifi

Welcome to Average Day on Everidge!

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Welcome to my second year blogging and my new site at WordPress.  Thanks for taking the short trip over from Fifi’s Filosophies.  I’m so glad you are here.  As you can see I have a new name and a new home. We live just an average life over here on Everidge. My husband has lived his entire life on this road. When we married, his parents gifted us with land that we built on. I suppose we will never move. That’s our plan anyway.

I am planning lots of new things for the blog. I’ve been hearing through the grapevine that I should be sharing my tried and true recipes so you will be seeing some of those from time to time.  My mom taught me to cook when I was a child so a lot of recipes are in my head. I tweaked some of those through the years to our liking and some have remained the same. Sometimes mom’s way is just better left alone. It can’t be improved upon. Right?   I will be sharing several of those recipes as well as some new ones as James and I have recently switched from eating mostly a meat based diet to eating a mostly vegetarian based diet. This has been an interesting journey and one that has really surprised us considering we both were meat and potatoes kind of people. Stay tuned. I have some great recipes you will want to try.

We together, James and I will be sharing DIY (Do It Yourself) projects that keep us busy. We have several right now that we are in the middle of. That’s right. In the “middle” of.

1.  Den (Man Cave) This consists of ripped out flooring, replacing ceiling, painting the walls and brick and maybe even  building some furniture.

2.  Downstairs Bathroom. Wow! I can’t wait to show you the walls in our bathroom. This turned out great.  James even  built a barn door. It looks awesome. The tile is going in now, so it shouldn’t be too long.

3.  Stair Project. We had previously painted the stair risers and treads white. We’ve changed the balusters from wood to  wrought iron and have painted the treads a different color. I can’t believe how it has changed the way the room  looked.

These are just a few of the projects, that we have going on.

We “scored” an awesome piece of vintage furniture this summer that will be included in the living room that I will show you later on. You won’t believe it until you see it.

Hopefully, this fall, we will have an upcoming backyard renovation that will  begin with landscaping and include a new deck and patio in the spring. Yes! We do stay busy. I guess you could say that it keeps us out of trouble.

I have some exciting news to share about my transition to my natural hair color. This has been a fun journey.  I just laugh at myself when I think about how “scared” I was to do this. So silly.

Something that is closer to my heart though than recipes and DIY projects is encouraging you in your everyday life and your walk with God.  As most of you probably already know, my day-time job is Administrative Assistant at our church.  I sing in the choir, shadow a precious boy who is autistic, and volunteer in the nursery every week. So you can tell  that my life is very wrapped up in my church work.  On a regular basis, I talk to people who are hurting, sad and are carrying burdens.  People who need encouragement. I hope that I will be able to, on a regular basis, encourage my readers as well.

So, there you have it. All wrapped up in a small package. So many things going on over here on Everidge.   Keep your eyes open. Big things are happening here. It’s just an “Average Day on Everidge!”

Fifi