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Archive for October, 2011

Creative Wisdom & Encouragement

Sunday, October 30th, 2011

One of the benefits of having my computer’s hard drive fill up (it’s slowing down my system and at a dangerous point for freezing up), is that I’m looking through my documents hoping to find duplicates. In the process, I’m also putting a few random items which were in hard-to-find places, into logical folder homes where I can find them later.

In a folder from 2002, I found a photograph of a page in a Maggie Righetti book (either Knitting in Plain English or Crocheting in Plain English… I own both). I don’t remember taking this photo, but I do like to make “photocopies” using my camera and am also fond of quotations. I am sure it was me who photographed it.

The woman was wise. I’m glad I have the benefit of this wisdom, and can pass it along.

ColorJoy is about all forms of creativity and artfulness. Learning to stand tall, trust our gut, and walk forward in spite of any doubts… that is a lifestyle artform. Maggie Righetti seems to have had wisdom in this respect.

Although she wrote books about knitting, crochet, sweater design… this quotation is purely about the challenges commonly experienced by all creative people. Regardless of whether you perform, create objects, garden, or otherwise nurture beauty in the world or in others… this quote is for you.

Creativity, innovation and nontraditional ways of solving problems are feared by noncreative, uninnovative, and traditional people. It causes them apprehension and consternation. They cope with their fear by criticizing people who do things differently.

If nothing can ever change, nothing can ever get any better! If you don’t create new ways to solve old problems, you’ll always be stuck with the old problems.

There are many critical people in this world. (They may even outnumber the supportive ones.) Depending on the environment you live in and the thought patterns of the people who surround you, you must expect to be criticized for creativity, for solving your problems in a unique way, and for making innovative changes whether or not your efforts are successful. Your own family members, and people in small towns or small groups especially, can be the absolutely worst nay-sayers against doing anything different or new.

Criticism and the fear of criticism are real concerns that one must simply learn to deal with. We could free ourselves of criticism by not being creative. There is an old adage that tells us: “To avoid criticism: Say nothing; do nothing; feel nothing; be nothing.” But since you are reading this book, I don’t think that you are the kind of person who can BE a nothing.

One of the best ways to get over the effects of unwanted criticism is to consider why it was made. What was his/her reason for criticizing instead of congratulating? Did the person feel inferior and incapable of doing what you did? Did he lack the know-how to create? Was the criticism made out of jealousy? Or was it the fear of anything new or different? Might critical remarks have been made because the person was afraid that you were venturing into new territory where he or she feared to go? Was she afraid she would be left behind, loosing (sic) you as a part of her world?

When you understand the nature of criticism, that it is easier than craftsmanship and creativity, you will have given yourself a sturdy coat of wax so that the raindrops of unkind and uncalled-for remarks will simply and quickly roll off you like a thunder shower off a freshly polished car.
(A side benefit of understanding the nature of criticism is that it will allow us to stop criticizing others, and to start handing out compliments, freely and openly, whenever and wherever we encounter creativity and craftsmanship.)

Maggie Righetti

The image today is a postcard I did many years ago, maybe 2000 or 2001. I hand-carved soft printing block materials, printed the background points in dye ink, then printed the words in opaque glycerine-based embossing ink. I used embossing powder (it melts under a heat gun and makes a raised, colored area where the sticky embossing ink had been printed) to make the text more bold and opaque.

The image was done for a “mailart” card exchange with several other artists. We all did “words of encouragement.” It was a wonderful swap.

Gluten-Free Flours and Substitutes

Friday, October 21st, 2011

I am developing recipes right now for an anticipated breads / crackers / energy bars / pizza dough cookbook. I hope it will be out in mid-November.

The creative part of the process is my strong point. I’m playing around with different flours, seeds, and combinations of them all. Just changing the proportions of, say buckwheat to rice flours, makes a totally different cracker. I find this fascinating!

While I was surfing the internet to get more information on seeds (particularly chia seeds), I found this excellent page at the Colorado State University Extension Service (click link below):

Gluten-Free Baking

Even if you are following recipes created by others, it is a very informative document (5 pages if you print it as a PDF, which is offered by them as an option). I know a lot at this point, and there was plenty of new information for me. The document is dated 2009, but gluten free is a subject which is not hurt by a delay in reading.

I love that it includes more than just gluten-free grains. It talks about bean flours, flax seed and chia seed, tapioca starch (from a root), and even nut flours… which I can’t eat but which are tasty for those who can enjoy them.

Now I’m off to experiment one more time with cracker recipes. Even the not-so-great ones are great with a little pumpkin butter on them. Win-win.

Last night, Brian and I had my pumpkin soup for dinner, with some experimental crackers. I first published the recipe in December 2002, here on the blog. It continues to get a lot of positive comment. Maybe you’d like to try it? Go ahead, click and get the free recipe!

LynnH’s Easy Pumpkin Soup

I haven’t forgotten that I’ve promised you a pizza dough recipe. I’ve got a tester trying it out for me and then I’ll get that one up here.

Until then; happy, healthy, creative eating to you!

Food Restrictions: Real

Sunday, October 16th, 2011

Today is Twitter Blog Action Day #BAD11 – The topic is #FOOD. I learned about this event very late in the game but wanted to add my voice.

Food, at its best, should be all positive for all people. It can be nourishing, a delight to the senses, comforting and refreshing.

There are so many angles on how that can become not true for an individual… hunger, eating disorders, lactose intolerance, non-food additives, food allergies/ sensitivities and the like.

It is Real!

For the record, there are an amazing number of us struggling to deal with food limitations. There may be an equal number of people who just can’t believe this is really an issue. After all, typical food is good for us, yes?

Peanuts – Nothing to mess with!

One mother told me a sad story of her peanut-allergic son’s teacher not “getting” it. This mother was told to be in charge of snacks in that classroom for a few weeks until the teacher could figure out what to do next.

My experience with teachers is that they are really caring people. I can only imagine that this particular one was not aware of peanut allergy yet, and perhaps busy caring about other real needs of the classroom. In any case, that child was at risk of problems outside his control (and his mother’s control) until the system could catch up to his needs.

Peanut allergy can be deadly. Society must learn to listen and believe. If you know someone who has trouble breathing after eating something, or tingling in the mouth or the lips after eating something, call 911 if it’s happening right now. If you want information on the subject when it’s not an emergency, contact the The Food Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network.

Gluten and Wheat

Some people are physically unable to process gluten, which is a component of wheat, rye and barley. Some of those people also do not tolerate oats or dairy products.

Some of these people are diagnosed with Celiac Sprue, some are not doctor-diagnosed but would go back to eating gluten only “over my dead body” as one woman told me last week.

These people can react to a mere bit of wheat flour dust on their otherwise “clean” food. They are understandably afraid to eat in restaurants in case there is some of that “cross-contamination.”

I know many people who suffer with this. If they eat the wrong thing, they can feel really unwell for several weeks while they build up their system again.

If you know someone who has some of these concerns, they can contact the Celiac Sprue Association for more information and support.

My Food-Allergy/ Sensitivity Story

I can only share my own story – that of food allergy/ sensitivity. I’ve been hungry for long stretches, because I was afraid to eat. Every time I ate, I got sick in different ways. I started to see food as my enemy.

I have had well-meaning friends suggest I should just DECIDE that the foods wouldn’t bother me any more. This is a lot like saying I’m making it up. I invite you to live in this body and say that again. I am well, healthy and strong now (at age 52) but it took a 20-year journey to get here.

WE MUST BE HEARD. If it’s real to us, it’s real.

I try not to complain much, because this is something easily treated by lifestyle choice. I’d much rather deal with that than a medical procedure. It’s very inconvenient to not be able to eat what others do. It’s not life threatening for me.

The First Discovery

I learned in 1991 that if I ate mold and yeast foods, I got spots before my eyes for no apparent reason. I was foggy in the mind, almost like I was stoned. I wanted to work. I would sit at my desk and ask myself why I couldn’t do what I knew how to do, and wanted to do.

I inappropriately talked about my focus issues to anyone who would listen. At a lunch with a large group of folks one Easter Sunday, a man I’d never met before suggested I give up yeast, mold/aged foods, caffeine and sugar. It had done miracles for him when he had similar symptoms.

I was desperate enough that I tried. I went 3.5 years without any of those foods. I was able to go back to caffeine and sugar, but yeast/aged foods still make me foggy.

I’m not tempted to go back. I like having full use of my brain.

Second Chapter

Several years later, I found myself increasingly weak. It happened very slowly, until I realized that climbing stairs was really too much effort… for me, a dancer, only 30-something years old.

It got so that I was only willing to climb the stairs to our bedroom once a day. All day, as I found things I wanted to take upstairs, I’d leave them at the foot of the stairway. When I went to bed, I took them up at the same time. More than one climb a day seemed too hard.

A friend who had been really sick and having anaphylaxis (breathing difficulty from allergic reaction) from foods, found an Environmental Doctor who turned around her life. She recommended him to me. I went. His nurse, Karen, was WONDERFUL.

She found that I was sensitive to all but 2 of the foods tested that day. I could not tolerate corn, yeast (yup), potato, egg, milk. I could still eat wheat and soy.

The craziest reaction? Potato gives me the BLUES. I immediately wanted to weep when they tested me for potatoes. (I know someone who got very angry with one food reaction. I wonder how many children have behavior problems in school because of undiagnosed food incompatibilities.)

After just FOUR DAYS of giving up all of those foods and related foods, I found myself taking the steps, two at a time, without using a railing. Four days and my life turned around! It was a miracle to me.

Let’s Not Argue over Words

Some people tell me this is not real allergy. True, I don’t stop breathing with those foods. However, if I eat corn or a corn product, I go to bed and feel like I have the flu for a day or two. If I eat yeast bread, I feel foggy and am not safe to drive for about 4 hours.

I don’t care what you call it. I call it poison.

Since the first discoveries, I’ve had a few changes. I started eating a lot of wheat tortillas because I could no longer eat corn.

After a year or so, I got so that wheat weakened me and made me ache if I ate  it regularly. I can still eat a small portion no more than once a week.

After 5 years of not eating egg or milk, I find that I can eat fully-cooked eggs without trouble (cooking does change the chemical makeup of foods… I also can eat cooked apple but not raw).

I am now able to now tolerate organic milk products if they are not aged. This means that milk, home-whipped cream (if the cream is preservative-free) and some ice creams work for me. Yogurt and cheese still do not work for me because of their relationship to the yeast/mold category.

The Last 10%

I spent about 7 years working with that doctor and his wonderful, amazing allergy nurse. However, I kept getting hives and I could not pin down what it was from. The doctor was stumped.

He had me log every single food I ate for 6 weeks. I had a chart I put on my wall where I wrote everything I ate. I was not to eat a food again for 3 more days, so that I could rotate and pinpoint how my system reacted. I tracked herbs, everything. Every once in a while I could only figure out a few foods left to eat for that 4-day round… maybe perch and beets or some such thing. I ate foods I did not really like, in order to have more choices. It was like having an extra part time job with no pay. I was miserable.

I found out in that six weeks, that I can’t tolerate wild rice. I’d never eaten wild rice before, but I’d tried it to increase the foods I could rotate! The rest of the data left me just as clueless as at the start.

A Little Boost

During this hives-every-day time, I told my wonderful OB-GYN nurse that I was breaking out in hives a lot. She said that a lot of folks get hives from fruits, and I should see if giving those up would help. She suggested pineapple, banana and strawberry as common culprits.

I found that eating no fruit at all did really help. One day I had a tiny bite of a gorgeous local peach, knowing that it might be the last peach I ever ate. It was INCREDIBLE, I enjoyed it thoroughly. I had hives for 4 days. Never again, but the evidence was clear as a bell.

It did not seem fully healthy to eat no fruit. However, it seemed every one I tried did not work for me.

The Old, The New

My Environmentalist retired. My insurance wanted me to go to a “regular” allergy doctor, and so I was assigned to someone. He turned out to be a real gift, assistance with that last 10%.

He tried to test me for 40 things using the standard scratch test. The tests did not work properly on me… my body was just not able to respond in a standard way.

I had to go back and test only 10 items at a time. This time he found out some amazing things.

First, I reacted to a whole bunch of foods that I *never* eat. I somehow just didn’t enjoy eating them so I didn’t. This included most fish, cucumber, green pepper, celery (imagine being allergic to celery) and a few other vegetables. This let me know that my body did have some instinct since childhood, where I had a gut “knowing” to not eat certain things.

Second, I reacted to another bunch of foods that I had totally overused. In lots of cases, they were foods I had been encouraged to eat in abundance, thinking that they were healthy. I’m here to tell you that even healthy foods can become an overdose of sorts.

The big ones: Cinnamon, Ginger, Garlic (yes, it’s the hardest one to give up), and tree nuts. I can have seeds but not almonds, cashews and the like.

In addition, he was able to isolate a few fruits I tolerate well. What is ironic, is that they are commonly allergic fruits for others. I can have strawberries, grapefruit, and dark cherries (but not sour/pie cherries). I’ve found since that I can also have cooked apples, cranberries, lingonberries, and rhubarb – which is not technically a fruit.

I do miss peaches and raspberries very much. I am SO happy to not have hives every day, though! I’m really OK with a short list that works. I know my body is happy to have a few fruits in my rotation after a year without.

Grateful for 2 Docs, 2 Nurses

That last allergic-food discovery (problem spices/ acceptable fruits) has given me my life back. I almost never get hives, and if I do it’s because I ate at a restaurant and there was an ingredient I didn’t anticipate. We eat at home most of the time.

When we eat out, it’s at carefully chosen locally-owned spots where I can chat with the cook (not the server, who often is sure they know how the kitchen works but usually misses something in the translation).

The Good Part

I’m an artist. I make a living figuring things out. I got very tired of not being able to eat treats. Since most Gluten-Free baked goods have Corn, Potato and/or Xanthan gum… and I can’t have those… I could not buy most limited-ingredient treats in the grocery store.

I already knew how to read labels, but reading did not find me much in the way of snacks. I started to experiment in the kitchen.

I learned that flax seeds, chia seeds, applesauce, oil and sweet white rice flour were sometimes good substitutes for eggs, depending on what I was making.

I learned that adding vegetable matter like pumpkin, applesauce, crushed tomato and such, can help a baked good from drying out too fast (a problem with some  non-wheat flours, particularly teff).

I learned how to bake with flours I hadn’t used before: buckwheat, brown rice, sweet white rice, teff, even chickpea. I learned what did and did not work when mixing them. Actually, I learned about what didn’t work most often, but I learned.

Recipes!

I have shared a lot of recipes on my blog, since I started it in 2002. You can see that at first I did bake with wheat and now I do not. However, some of the recipes are easy to adjust for whatever your needs are. My LynnH’s Easy  Pumpkin Soup recipe is a perennial favorite on the blog, and can be adjusted as needed.

I invite you to try some of the 30-plus free recipes I have posted here on my Recipe Archive.

If you or a loved one has food restrictions, I did issue a Holiday-Friendly Dessert cookbook last November. It’s called “I Can Eat These.”

If you are interested in the cookbook, it is available in PDF ebook or Spiral-Bound paper format. Click the appropriate variation’s link to learn more.

More Recipes

Right now, I’m working on another cookbook for this holiday season. It will be more bread-related items and portable food for days on the road. That is, crackers, pizza dough, energy bars, pancakes and more. I hope to have it done by the 2nd week of November.

My pizza dough recipe (no wheat, no yeast) will come out in the next week on this blog. I’m in the middle of writing the post, with many photos to help make it easier for my readers.

If you are interested in hearing from me about my cookbooks or other food news (including free recipes), please join my email list for updates. I don’t send out a lot of information, but I’d love to share goodies with you when they come up!

 


Thanks for tuning in. I’m grateful to have a voice, to maybe speak to or for those who are still suffering and in need of support. I’m listening. I know you’re not making it up.

Hang tight. Keep searching until you figure it out. It worked for me.

LynnH

Blessed Unrest / Divine Dissatisfaction

Saturday, October 15th, 2011

A Strong Woman

I have long been fascinated by Martha Graham, modern dance pioneer. I studied Modern Dance in high school, with a woman who had danced in some sort of capacity through Martha (I assume at her school).

Reading about Ms. Graham has been riveting. She was not vanilla-flavored! I believe if I met her in person I would have been afraid of her. However, those of us with a “strong flavor” do tend to make a mark on those around us.

From PBS.org:

Martha Graham’s impact on dance was staggering and often compared to that of Picasso’s on painting, Stravinsky’s on music, and Frank Lloyd Wright’s on architecture.

Transformation

Martha Graham changed the course of dance in one very long lifetime. When her body became too old and frail to dance any more, she spent about a year holed up in her room.

When she came out, she became a full-focus choreographer, sometimes teaching other dancers to dance roles she had created for herself. She had to re-invent herself, and in the end she triumphed.

Art as Writing

Martha hung out with another dancer/choreographer, Agnes DeMille, who worked most in musical theatre/ Broadway. They were in the same field but not directly competitive.

Agnes wrote my favorite words about Ms. Graham. She wrote a biography titled “Martha.” It’s not sugar coated at all, but it’s not mean either. It made me laugh, cringe, and open my eyes in amazement. I’m really grateful for that book, which I’ve read twice.

Wisdom

At some point, Martha wrote a letter to Agnes. Somehow it got transcribed in a public space, where other creatives could be encouraged by the words.

A long quote from that letter has been an amazing help to me at times. What I read into it is this: don’t worry about perfection, just DO THE WORK you were meant to do, the work you do which nobody else can. (There is no such thing as perfect anyway, right?)

So often, creative people think what they do is no big deal. It’s easy for them… but not for others. This does make it a big deal, if you ask me. On the other hand, they sometimes fuss so long making it perfect that they never release their work to the world.

Here is the quote which has really informed my creative life for years:

There is a vitality, a life-force, a quickening that is translated through you into action; and because there is only one of you in all time, this expression is unique.

And if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium, and be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how good it is; nor how valuable it is; nor how it compares to other expressions. It is your business to keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open.

You do not even have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware directly to the urges that motivate you.

Keep the channel open… No artist is pleased…

There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is only a queer, divine dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching – and makes us more alive than the others.
Martha Graham
(to Agnes DeMille)

===

From PBS.org’s page about Martha Graham:

It is nearly impossible to track the influence of Martha Graham. Everyone from Woody Allen to Bette Davis cites her as a major influence. She is universally understood to be the twentieth century’s most important dancer, and the mother of modern dance.
…She was the first choreographer to regularly employ both Asian- and African-American Dancers. Her contributions to the art of stage design and dance production are countless.

===

My friends… keep marching, keep creating, keep noticing joy – or blessed unrest if that’s what you’ve got. Do it in spite of yourself, do it even if the neighbors won’t understand, do it even if your parents think it won’t help you make a good living.

Fit your creative needs into your already too-busy life. You might just feel relieved from allowing yourself that time… to be yourself. Hugs.

Rescuing Ourselves

Thursday, October 13th, 2011

A Passionate Subject

I got off on a rant last night with a bunch of dance friends. After an enlightening session with Sandi Amorim of Deva Coaching, who noticed strength in my voice as I discussed things for which I had true passion, I think I should share that constructive rant here with you.

Any time you have a few dozen women, there will always have a few in painful change. Our dance troupe is one of those groups. I told some of the dancers how powerful it was for me when I learned I could rescue myself. I’ve noticed some of the women in our group learning to rescue themselves, too.

Powerful Stuff in My Life

I know how to jump a car battery. In fact, since I have a habit of turning on my car lights even in the middle of the day, I may be considered an expert at jumping a car. It doesn’t take strength. It takes knowing how and getting it done.

I know how to change a tire. I really don’t enjoy getting dirty, but I love getting at my problem right away instead of sitting and feeling helpless while I wait for someone (a friend, a stranger, the AAA tow truck) to come and fix it for me.

My father, who was emphatically NOT a feminist, made me learn to change a tire (1972) before I could sign up for drivers’ education. He was wise. He wanted me strong, not a victim.

The last time I changed my tire it took me 22 minutes total. I was in charge of how it went. I didn’t love it, but since I was running early that day I was only about 5 minutes late to my destination. I’ve waited for a lot of tow trucks that took over an hour. The power of doing it myself was much bigger in my heart than having the comfort of someone else doing the labor.

There are still things I don’t want to do, things I will hire done if at all possible. There are things where I just plain need someone else to help out. However, I can sit there and wait for someone to notice the damsel in distress, or I can go ask the safest, most competent person in my circle if they would assist me.

Unwise Help

Once I let a boss (a very friendly and cool guy) help me jump my car. This was at least 15 years ago… well, he didn’t know how to do it but he acted like he did. He nearly blew up both of our cars until I hesitantly pointed out the need for change. ACK! Now I am triple-sure that the more I know about hiccups that *will* indeed happen in my life, the more I can assist my own rescue.

Now I ask people if I can please borrow the battery on their car. I tell them I have cables, I know exactly what I’m doing, I do it far too much because of an odd behavior quirk (lights on every day even when unneeded), and I just need to borrow a battery for a few minutes. They are relieved to not be the rescuer. I’m relieved to get the job done REALLY fast and be done with it.

I’m a little embarrassed every time I leave my lights on, but thanks to cool folks wherever I seem to go, it’s nearly a non-issue. (I carry gardening gloves in my car all the time now, and that way I get going without dirty hands. More minor rescue stuff, there.)

Big Rescues

Car hiccups are a small thing, really. It’s when you find yourself in a really wrong place in life that rescuing oneself is more important, and more difficult to imagine.

I have one friend who made a huge change 0n behalf of her toddler. She may not have been able to do the hard work of a new life had it been just herself to rescue. Many women turn into tigers when something goes wrong involving their child. I honor that inner tiger in each mother.

One Personal Victory

My worst times were 20 years ago now. I’d shriveled up into a tiny emotional ball of trying not to be hurt, trying not to need anything, trying to stay out of the way. It seemed every time the real Lynn came out, I was scolded or shamed for the life which came out with her. I remember the feelings more than the incidents.

In the end I walked away from the house where I thought I’d retire (and the marriage which those plans included). I sold that house, and bought a smaller, humble house FOR MYSELF. Without any co-signer.

Just a few years before that I’d given up credit cards and other unsecured debt. That action turned things around enough that I was actually able to buy that house for ME!

In some countries, women are property. In this country, I was one of the tiny minority of women who owned property in their own name. This victory is not lost on me.

I just found this quote:

You gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. “I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.” You must do the thing you think you cannot do. – Eleanor Roosevelt

I just LOVE Eleanor Roosevelt. She was very shy when she was first married. In the end, she learned to STAND TALL. She changed the world by the time she was done with this life.

Once we rescue ourselves the first time… we know we can do the thing we once thought we could not do.

(The photos are of me as my persona Eudora, dancing with the Habibi Dancers of Lansing. Becoming a “belly” dancer gave me a love for my strong, female inner and physical selves. Don’t mess with a group of women! It may look strange from the outside, but from the inside it’s a strong female family of choice.)

Go forth. Be bold. Stand tall. Rescue yourself, even if that means calling for (safe, kind) help.

Creative Pizzas: Coming Soon

Friday, October 7th, 2011

It has been busy here at Casa de ColorJoy! I’m working on 3 different knitting projects, planning for a new cookbook (hopefully out in November… breads and crackers, and pizza dough), and doing some public speaking on food restrictions.

Pizza as an Artful Expression

I’ve had a post half-written for most of a week, on pizzas. Not just any pizza which is delivered to your door. Pizza that you can make at home. You can make it, even if you can’t have wheat or yeast or gluten or xanthan gum! Pizza with all sorts of flavors, sauces, toppings.

We have been making pizzas with the standard Italian-style tomato sauce, of course. But I have been experimenting with other sauces and flavors. I’ve used green salsa (tomatillo based), some Indian eggplant (leftover baigan burtha), and best of all, black olive paste (sometimes called tapenade).

I’ve been topping the pizzas with as many fresh veggies as possible. Harvest season is great!

Tonight I even sliced up some cauliflower very thin and put it on the olive-paste pizza with fresh garden tomatoes (thanks to my gardening/knitting friend, Rita B.). Superb.

Other nights, I’ve used leftover greens from the night before. Also excellent.

I’ve got a great crust recipe I’ve tested now for a good year and served to company with great reviews (and a request for the recipe). I’ve got photographs on how to make it. I’ve got half of that post written.

Meanwhile, life is getting complicated. Saturday is double-whammy busy in the food realm.

Do You have Questions about Limited-Ingredient Baking?

I’m spending a lot of my professional time lately in the food-limitations realm (vegan, gluten free and food sensitivities). I answer a LOT of questions and sell my holiday dessert cookbook to those who are interested. It’s great fun to share what I’ve learned over the years.

I’ll have a table at the Gluten-Free Fair in Lansing, Michigan –

Location: South Church of the Nazarene, 401 W. Holmes Rd., Lansing, MI
Saturday, October 8, 2011
10 am – 2 pm

and then in the late afternoon I’ll have

Samples at Foods for Living grocery

2655 E. Grand River Ave.
East Lansing (at the end of Park Lake Road)
Saturday, October 8, 2011
3:30 to 5:30 pm
517/ 324-9010
(This is for Gluten-Free month, there will be other special things happening at the store all day.)

I will have copies of my cookbook with me for folks to check out. Sales are cash or check only (directly to me/ColorJoy) at both locations. Those printed copies are priced at $11 each. For those who prefer a PDF version or are out of town, I also sell the cookbook on my website Here.

You can imagine, I’ll be baking all day Friday to prepare. I’ll do what I can to get that Pizza post out as soon as I can.

Meanwhile, remember that art is everywhere. Creativity is in you, and just recognizing it in your life can make things more lovely each day.

Art as an Everyday Attitude

Notice the colors in the trees. Notice the sound of a toddler giggling (if parenting a giggling toddler isn’t an artform, I don’t know what is).

Enjoy the flavor, the scent, the texture of a well-prepared meal or a great cup of tea. Notice the colors you’ve chosen in your home or closet, and how they look next to one another.

…and I’ll be back with that pizza dough recipe. Really.

Color Passion

Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

I cannot pretend to feel impartial about colors. I rejoice with the brilliant ones and am genuinely sorry for the poor browns.
—Winston Churchill

At last, I find someone who understands my own biases…

Thanks to Knitting Daily (from Interweave Press) for finding this quote and passing it along to my inbox.

Joy

Sunday, October 2nd, 2011

Joy is what happens to us when we allow ourselves to recognize how good things really are.

– Marianne Williamson, Author