Wayne Might Be a Robot

chaga chunks by Akuokuo Vallis

Customer Service Rep. is typing…

Socks Galore and More strives for excellence.  My name is Wayne.  How may I assist you? 

Akuokuo is typing…

Hi Wayne.  There was a mix up with my order.  I received  Chaga chunks instead of socks. Not sure what Chaga is.  Says it’s from Chaga Alaska.

Customer Service Rep. is typing…

Socks Galore and More strives for excellence.  Apologies for the mix up.  READ THIS  and  WATCH THAT  while I research your order.  

Customer Service Rep. is typing…

Looks like the polka-dotted bunny socks are on back order.  Chaga is a medicinal  mushroom. Very healthy.  Tastes like a combo between tea and coffee– but better for you. Simmer it up (see instructions in bag).  Try it with honey, maple syrup, plain Jane or with your favorite milk.   Might be butchering your name… is it  A-quack-quack?  or A-clock-clock?

Akuokuo is typing…

Whaaat!?  A-clock-clock?  Must be kidding about A-quack-quack!?  Should I send the chaga back…?

Socks Galore and More strives for excellence.  Keep the chaga.  It’s a freebie.  Back to your name…is it  A-koo-koo?

Nope. Wrongo again.

Socks Galore and More strives for excellence.  We want to make you happy… Is it….

Akuokuo is typing…

It’s Ah-Kwo-Kwo (Koko for short)Ghanaian twin name–meaning second born female twin. Thanks for the Chaga.  Please cancel the bunny socks.  Byeee.

Hello Kitty, You’re So Pretty

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If you were stuck on a deserted island and could only have one food–an unlimited supply of it—what would it be?

 

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I’d choose  a sweet potato.  I love sweet potatoes–especially roasted sweet potatoes. I’d also have a few add on condiments–like a generous slathering of cultured butter, a sprinkling of pink Himalayan salt, a drizzling of  local raw honey  and a dash of cinnamon on top.  But–actually–I could eat a roasted sweet potato plain.

 

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The one food I really cannot stand is eggplant.  So, if you’re on a neighboring deserted island and your food choice is eggplant– sorry- I won’t be swimming over for lunch anytime soon. Even if you have a stash of chocolate!

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I could not, would not, on a boat.
I will not, will not, with a goat.
I will not eat them in the rain.
I will not eat them on a train.
Not in the dark! Not in a tree!
Not in a car! You let me be!
I do not like them in a box.
I do not like them with a fox.
I will not eat them in a house.
I do not like them with a mouse.
I do not like them here or there.
I do not like them Anywhere.

 

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My new favorite way to use roasted sweet potato is in a  Sweet Potato and Almond Cake.

 

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The recipe is based on Claudia Roden’s Orange and Almond Cake.  Instead of using oranges–substitute a large, 1 lb. sweet potato (roasted or baked) and add 1 Tbsp. orange juice plus 1/2 tsp. (each) cinnamon, nutmeg, cardamom and  1/4 tsp. black pepper and coriander.  It’s so easy even a cat could make it. My goodness–I should have said rat instead of cat.  My twin sister’s cat, Paloma,  was indeed quite the baker!

 

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In fact, not too long ago, Paloma, was the reigning Queen of Cat Baking. Too bad her one and only rival, Niko, could only bake birthday cakes.  Of course, Paloma could do it all! She was also an accomplished water colorist.  Self-Portraits were her specialty.

 

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Paloma, however, is no more– but my twin sister still has her diary. Apparently, Paloma’s dream was to create a Cooking  A-cat-emy (for the advancement of feline culinary skills).  She wanted to personally groom each student (she called them kittens) to ensure they measured up to her royal Hello Kitty standards.  (Hardee Har Har-that was an inside joke–on page 324 of Paloma’s  diary–she reveals that she hated that floozy Hello Kitty).

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Oh, Poor Paloma.  She never got to meet big boy Boris  or  little Stix.  These two handsome fellas were going to be on her dream team at the A-cat-emy.  It’s probably for the best–Boris has a reputation around town and Stix is a thief!   Plus, Alibaba, Paloma’s one true love has a jealous streak (and crazy looking fangs)!   But he is very sweet.  And he still visits!

 

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Caffeine Fiend

 

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My little caffeine problem started with Kombucha–that fizzy drink that is supposed to be so very healthy for you (according to a lady I overheard at a grocery store).

  • Kombucha is a variety of fermented, lightly effervescent sweetened black or green tea drinks. Kombucha has many supposed health benefits. It is produced by fermenting tea using a “symbiotic ‘colony’ of bacteria and yeast” (SCOBY).

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I did not like Kombucha–at first.  There was something odd about the vinegary aftertaste. Even so–I kept buying it and drinking it.  I became a Kombucha addict. I tried nearly every kind of Kombucha out there. I even tried strange DIY looking local brands that were suspiciously packaged in recycled Coke bottles.  But after a few months–I got tired of Kombucha. That initial odd vinegary aftertaste was hardly even noticeable to me by this point.  It wasn’t even boosting my energy anymore either.

I put a twin size mattress for myself  in my mother’s room so I could help her at night. The night shift began taking a toll on me. I needed something to keep me awake during the day.  That’s when I turned to coffee–Black Coffee!

Wowee. My coffee fling escalated quickly. It was great–at first.  But soon, I noticed my driving was reckless. I was  having terrible thoughts about those #$@&%*! people who should not be on the road. I was getting headaches too.  And I was fidgety–I just could not rest, ever. My vision even deteriorated.  I had to call it quits.

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But of course, I found something else— Chai. I even started making my own.

The combo of super caffeinated black tea with spices, milk and sugar (lots of sugar) was delicious. It went well with breakfast, lunch, dinner, snack and everything else in between. Eventually, I realized that caffeine  was getting the best of me.  I had to stop– cold turkey.

  • Caffeine is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant of the methylxanthine class. It is the world’s most widely consumed psychoactive drug.
  • Caffeine can produce a mild form of drug dependence. Tolerance develops with chronic use leading to autonomic effects of increased blood pressure, heart rate, and increased urine output (Wikipedia).

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I do think about coffee and tea and all things caffeinated from time to time.  I actually still have an unopened bottle of Kombucha in the refrigerator (just in case…).  But even if I am a little tired during the day–I am a much calmer, happier person without the caffeine.

Confessions of a Wheat Belly

It has been 2 months, 1 day, 4 hours, 10 minutes and 15 seconds since my last cupcake. I am now officially grain free.  I honestly never knew I had a problem until I changed my diet.

 

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My dog, Kookaburra, has been grain free since she was a puppy. Looking back– I can now understand (and relate to) the crazy behavioral issues she had during her transition from kibble to grain free.

 

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Initially, I found myself secretly, quietly perusing images of cupcakes and (yes) sandwiches on the internet.  Then my wheat addiction symptoms got more serious.  I bought food magazines and cut out pictures of bread and other grain filled gems and pasted them on my bathroom wall!  I was also light headed and a tiny bit cranky.

 

 

But, to support our mother’s path to wellness and her newly prescribed grain free diet, my sisters and I have decided to remain grain free too. As Dr. William Davis, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author states, “Once wheat-free, always wheat-free is the best policy.”

 

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Question:  

  • Is there a difference between Gluten-Free and Grain Free? 

Answer:  Yes

  • A gluten-free diet is a diet that excludes the protein gluten. Gluten is found in grains such as wheat, barley, rye, and a cross between wheat and rye called triticale.  
  • Rice, corn, barley and oats are allowed.

 

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  • A Grain-Free diet is a diet that excludes all grains including wheat, rice, corn, barley and oats.  
  • According to Dr. William Davis, a Grain-Free Diet is the healthiest.

 

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In a recent interview from https://www.wellnessmama.com, Dr. William Davis  states:

  • Wheat, harboring its hidden gliadin protein, increases appetite.
  • Wheat is a weak opiate. Eat wheat, you want more wheat, you want more carbohydrates. 
  • When we eat more grains, we gain weight and acquire all the health consequences such as hypertension, high cholesterol, arthritis, acid reflux, and diabetes. 

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To celebrate our new grain free life–I have decided to reincarnate my favorite popcorn snack into a non-popcorn (grain-free) snack.  It really is just as delicious.  Enjoy!

 

 

Non-Popcorn Snack

1 cup marcona almonds, salted
1/2 cup dried cherries or cranberries, sweetened
3-4 ozs. dark chocolate bar, chopped
1/2 cup manchego cheese, cubed
3 cups popcorn (eliminate)

Mix all ingredients in a bowl.