Thursday, May 31, 2012

FRESH is best!

With the start of summer in Minnesota...comes the fresh foods we love. Although, at the beginning of the season, there aren't many local fresh options, but that doesn't mean we can't still cook fresh! Since one of mine and my husbands favorite foods to make (and all variations of it) is tacos. We love beef tacos, chicken tacos, fish tacos, ground turkey name it, we've had it as tacos. And one of our favorite ways to have our tacos is with fresh chunky salsa. Because it's something I absolutely love, I decided to share it with all of you so you can enjoy the fresh yumminess!!

All the ingredients used were bought at my local Cub Foods grocery store. If you live in a warmer climate area, some of these ingredients may be available locally, if so, definitely go for the local or organic when you're able to - they just taste that much better!

Gather all your ingredients, and get ready to chop!

Start with your tomatoes and chop them roughly (no need to worry about size)

Next you'll move on to your red onion. We use about half of a medium size red onion and chop it into smaller pieces.

Add the chopped onion to the bowl of tomatoes.

Next, the avacado's. Everyone seems to have a way to de-pit, peel and cut up avacado, but we usually cut it in half and then use a knife to twist the seed/pit right out.

After getting the pit out, we usually peel the outside off which allows us easily dice the avacado.


Next we chop up the fresh cilantro. We like a bit more cilantro, but you can add more or use less depending on your preferences.

Next squeeze the juice from one lime and add to the rest of the ingredients.

Finally, add just a bit of salt and pepper to taste.
We prefer and use fresh cracked sea salt and peppercorns.

Now, mix and ENJOY!

Fresh Tomato, Avacado & Red Onion Salsa

4 Roma Tomatoes, chopped
2 Avacados, chopped
1/2 Medium Red Onion, chopped
Juice from 1 Fresh Lime
1/8 cup Fresh Cilantro, chopped
Salt & Pepper to taste

Combine all ingredients and enjoy!

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Tomato Klamata Olive Quinoa Salad

As many of you may know, to manage my fibro symptoms, I went gluten free a couple years ago. I've found many ways to alter my favorite "comfort" foods to gluten free, but every once in a while, I come across something new, tasty and refreshingly healthy. Today, I had my first experience making Quinoa. I made it and used it in a salad recipe I got from a "health fair" at work a while back. I was pleasantly surprised at how tasty it is and, to top it off, my husband likes it too!

The ingredients are really pretty simple, you may even have these in your fridge and cubboard already.

1 cup Quinoa
2 cups water
1/2 cup Klamata Olives, roughly chopped
1/2 cup Green Onion, chopped
1/8 cup Fresh Mint, chopped
1/8 cup Fresh Parsley, chopped
2 Tomatoes, chopped
1-2 Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice
1/8 cup Olive Oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

Bring water to boil, add Quinoa, reduce to simmer until water is absorbed and quinoa is soft, about 15-20 minutes.

Set aside and chill. Combine herbs, tomatoes and olives.

Toss with chilled Quinoa. Drizzle Olive Oil and Lemon Juice over the top. Mix well. Season with Salt and Pepper.

Approx. 6 servings

This can be refridgerated overnight or enjoyed immediately.

**This recipe was originally created by Chef Marshall O'Brien with Taste Success

Monday, May 28, 2012

Camping...Fibro Style

My husband and I welcomed in the Memorial Day weekend...and the start of summer camping season with a new pop-up camper. I can't even begin to tell you how much easier camping with fibro is when you aren't sleeping on the ground, have a fridge, stove and sink to make "real" food, and are able to regulate the temperature when you sleep! I was in heaven compared to past camping trips!

I (as I've mentioned before) have been gluten free for quite some time, and I've found that camping for a weekend in a tent makes sticking to my gluten free diet a bit more difficult...but this weekend was much more enjoyable. I was happy to be able to make the foods I need to eat and to have heat at night when it got too cool out for me to sleep well. I did find out though - since we just purchased the camper - that there are a handful of items that will make camping even more pleasant - like a thicker memory foam mattress, better pillows and more things to help with organization (life is always easier when things are organized!).

Don't get me wrong...the storms over the weekend and sleeping in a new bed still left me exhausted by the time I got home today, but not as exhausted as past camping trips in a tent...Has anyone else found ways to change fun outdoor activities to make them more managable and pleasant so you are still able to continue despite your fibro?

Friday, May 18, 2012

Fibro and Facebook

As I'm sitting at home today (sick with a cold), I decided to finally start that Facebook (FB) page I've been thinking about starting. I get so frustrated reading so many of those posts by some folks where all they do is complain about their aches and pains. I know, and I understand that we have to deal with them all day every day (to some extent depending on the severity for each person), BUT in order to LIVE with fibromyalgia, I feel like I need to put dwelling on the aches and pains to the side and focus on how to manage them and LIVE my life.

My hope is that this FB page will be a place for people to gather to share natural remedies and lifestyle changes to ease symptoms. If you look at your Fibro and life in that life, please join me at to share what works and some of the crazy things we try and find don't work.

I am one of those Fibro fighters who has gone Gluten Free (GF) to ease my pain and fatigue symptoms, my goal with this blog is to start sharing some of the ways I've found to change my favorite foods over to GF and some foods that I had never considered eating before going GF that me and my husband couldn't live without now!

Let's live life! :)

Friday, May 11, 2012


Tomorrow, May 12th, is Fibromyalgia Awareness Day!

A day dedicated to making those around us more aware of what we go through on a daily basis. A day dedicated to standing on our soapboxes to yell to the world about the pain we live with and that it IS REAL! A day to stand next to each other...and to just know, that we're not alone.

I did some google searches recently (yup, last minute of course) to see what events might be planned here in my home state of Minnesota and possibly near my hometown of Hopkins, MN...I was very dissappointed to find nothing :( The Courage Center will be having their monthly meeting with a special speaker, but nothing out in public to make them more aware of Fibromyalgia. Of course, I have these grand thoughts - had I done some searching months agao - of what could have been set up to mark this date and raise awareness...kind of a coulda, shoulda, woulda moment.

So, since it is WAY to late to start planning some grand event for tomorrow to make those around me more aware of this syndrome of Fibromyalgia, I will just blog about it and share, share, share!!

Some information about Fibromyalgia syndrome (Shared from the National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Associations website:

Fibromyalgia (fi-bro-my-AL-ja) is a very common condition of widespread muscular pain and fatigue. Seven to ten million Americans suffer from fibromyalgia (FM). It affects women much more than men in an approximate ratio of 20:1. It is seen in all age groups from young children through old age, although in most patients the problem begins in their 20s or 30s. Recent studies have shown that fibromyalgia occurs worldwide and has no specific ethnic predisposition.

The Symptoms of Fibromyalgia
Fibromyalgia patients have widespread body pain which often seems to arise in the muscles. Some FM patients feel their pain originates in their joints. Pain that emanates from the joints is called arthritis; extensive studies have shown FM patients do not have arthritis. Although many fibromyalgia patients are aware of pain when they are resting, it is most noticeable when they use their muscles, particularly during repetitive activities. Their discomfort can be so severe it may significantly limit their ability to lead a full life. Patients can find themselves unable to work in their chosen professions and may have difficulty performing everyday tasks. As a consequence of muscle pain, many FM patients severely limit their activities including exercise routines. This results in their becoming physically unfit, which eventually makes their fibromyalgia symptoms worse.

In addition to widespread pain, other common symptoms include a decreased sense of energy, disturbances of sleep, and varying degrees of anxiety and depression related to patients' changed physical status. Furthermore, certain other medical conditions are commonly associated with fibromyalgia, such as: tension headaches, migraine, irritable bowel syndrome, irritable bladder syndrome, premenstrual tension syndrome, cold intolerance, and restless leg syndrome. Patients with estalished rheumatoid arthritis, lupus (SLE), and Sjogren's syndrome often develop FM during the course of their disease. The combination of pain and multiple other symptoms often leads doctors to pursue an extensive course of investigations, which are nearly always normal.

Fibromyalgia is one of the most common chronic pain conditions. The disorder affects an estimated 10 million people in the U.S. and an estimated 3-6% of the world population. While it is most prevalent in women —75-90 percent of the people who have FM are women —it also occurs in men and children of all ethnic groups. The disorder is often seen in families, among siblings or mothers and their children. The diagnosis is usually made between the ages of 20 to 50 years, but the incidence rises with age so that by age 80, approximately 8% of adults meet the American College of Rheumatology classification of fibromyalgia.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Time Flies!

Boy, it's been quite some time since I last posted on here. I was thinking that it would be a good tool to use to help others who choose to LIVE with Fibromyalgia instead of giving in to it. I guess I've had an extended fibro fog when it comes to keeping up with this blog.

I would like to use it to share some of my experiences with others - good and bad - and what I find that works for me. I strive to live my life without depending on medications to get me through the day, so I've made some changes to my life to make changes to how my body feels. Please feel free to share your experiences, comments, questions, etc. on any of my posts so we can all LIVE life despite Fibromyalgia!