Tuesday, April 29, 2014

State of Devotion Apparel & Accessories

State of Devotion is a clothing company that makes a variety of Ohio themed t-shirts and accessories. State of Devotion started in 2011 and opened it's flagship store in Grandview Heights earlier this year. They use American Apparel fitted t-shirts and print their awesome designs right here in Ohio. 

Spring Storm

I like thunderstorms... and I hate them. They make me really nervous. I'm always scared that a regular thunderstorm will turn into a terrifying tornado. Despite my fear though, I find them fascinating. It's hard to not watch a spring or summer storm rumble by. The tall cumulonimbus clouds looming over you. The way the sky goes from a bright and cheerful blue to stormy grey and purple in what feels like only a matter of minutes. A flash of lightning and the whole sky lights up, bright as midday, followed by the crashing BOOM of thunder. 

I can't look away.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Ramps + Pizza

Harvest Pizzeria had ramps* on tonight's special! It was delicious! The special featured wild ramps from Ohio and West Virginia, truffled mushrooms from Athens County, fennel sausage, Taleggio cheese and local honey. We enjoyed it on top of a gluten-free crust - it was divine! 

To round out the meal, I enjoyed a very gingery Moscow Mule. Read my full review of Harvest Pizzeria, written after my first visit, here!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Our Lovely View

The view from our apartment balcony. I'm so glad this rainy, dreary day ended with sunshine!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

16th Annual Mid-Ohio JDRF Promise Ball to Raise Money for Type 1 Diabetes Research

Former Congressman, Zachary T. Space, 
is this year's honoree at the Promise Ball.
JDRF is a global organization which funds innovative research on type 1 diabetes. I was recently contacted by the Mid-Ohio Chapter of JDRF to see if I would be interested in interviewing the JDRF 2014 Promise Ball honoree and his son, Zachary and Nicholas Space. I'm glad to have this opportunity to learn more about JDRF.

Let's backtrack a little bit though. What is diabetes? I'm sure for most of us, if you don't have the disease yourself or have a close family member or friend with it, you don't give it much thought. A few terms might be familiar, like blood glucose and insulin. Let's fix that, together. 

Diabetes, or, diabetes mellitus is a metabolic disease which results in the patient having high blood sugar. Diabetes is caused by the body not producing enough insulin or by the body not using insulin correctly. 

There are three types of diabetes: 

  • Type 1 Diabetes (T1D) is caused by the pancreas not producing enough insulin. Patients with T1D are insulin dependent and have to monitor their diet, exercise and stress levels to manage their blood sugar.
  • Type 2 Diabetes (T2D) results from the body becoming resistant to its own insulin. T2D can be managed and even reversed with proper diet and exercise. 
  • Gestational Diabetes occurs in pregnant women when they develop a high blood glucose level. 

Bees + Blossoms

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Gluten-Free Rhubarb Oven Cake + Recipe

Happy Earth Day! To celebrate I made a gluten-free rhubarb oven cake for dessert. My Dad sent me home with some rhubarb from the garden on Easter Sunday and I was excited to put it to good use!

Monday, April 21, 2014

Harvest Pizzeria - German Village

Harvest Pizzeria is my new favorite place for gluten-free pizza! I can't believe I didn't try eating here sooner! I went to Harvest with my parents last month for dinner. We arrived at the perfect moment to be seated without having to wait. The dining area is small but very open. Large windows on two sides of the room let in a ton of natural light.

Saying Goodbye to Chester

We said goodbye last week to a very special member of our family. Our sweet Chester would have been sixteen years old on May 4th. Chessie had congestive heart failure and was struggling to breath. My parents had him put to sleep on Monday, April 14th so he wouldn't suffer anymore.

Dealing with the loss of a family member, human or animal, is always difficult. Chester had been in our family for nearly sixteen years. It will take a long time to adjust to life without him. I wanted to share some of my memories and photos of our very sweet and photogenic Chessie.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes at COSI

On our most recent visit to COSI, we went and saw The International Exhibition of Sherlock Holmes for Kenneth's birthday. Kenneth is a big fan of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's writing. He recently finished reading all of Doyle's work featuring Sherlock Holmes and Dr. John Watson and is now working on The Lost World. We both love the BBC's Sherlock. We were both excited to check this exhibition out! Watch a short preview of the exhibition below:

COSI - The Center of Science and Industry

COSI, the Center of Science and Industry is a #1 nationally ranked science museum, right here in Columbus (Parent Magazine gave COSI this #1 rating in 2008). I first visited COSI on a field trip with my 6th grade class. I don't remember everything about the trip, but I know we had a blast! We watched an IMAX film about the Blue Angels and checked out COSI's various exhibits. The one I remember the most was the exhibit, Progress, which is still at COSI today. When I was a 6th grader I thought the 1898 version of the town was really cool, even though my friends and I spent most of our time in the 1962 side, making our own news broadcast and getting our picture taken at the vintage gas station. It was an exciting trip to Columbus for a bunch of small town kids!

River Walk

Kenneth and I took a walk along the Scioto River today at Hoover Reservoir Park. I'm glad we've had so many lovely days in a row here in Columbus!

Friday, April 18, 2014

Walking the Labyrinth

Kenneth and I finally walked the labyrinth at the Lane Avenue Gardens of Chadwick Arboretum! It was a beautiful evening!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Green Tutorial: Wedding Terrarium

Remember when I went to Galentine's Night at Whole Foods and learned how to make a terrarium? It was so much fun! Every glass jar I encounter has a new purpose - it could be made into an awesome terrarium!

I made this terrarium for my friends, Brittany and Matt, last month as a wedding present from Kenneth and me. The best part of the terrarium is the teeny tiny bride and groom! They're so little! I bought the figurine from HobbyLinc. HobbyLinc sells a ton of different figurines of people and animals - so many possibilities!

Kitty Sentry

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Pumpkin Feast in April! - Gluten-Free Oatmeal Cookie Pumpkin Pie + Recipe

Pumpkin pie in April? Why, yes please! I have three reasons for why this is an awesome idea:
  1. It snowed yesterday - which made me want to go back into hibernation and eat lots and lots of pie. 
  2. Pumpkin. I love pumpkin and if I could find canned pumpkin year round I'd just have 12 months of Pumpkin Feast every year. 
  3. I'm trying to clean out our cupboard and I have one last can of pumpkin puree and I didn't want to hoard it any longer. 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

A Clowder of Cats

Our three lovely ladies, Olivia, Emma and Amelia, decided to make mischief when I got home this afternoon. One of them (or possible all three, they've been known to collaborate when getting food is their goal) knocked over the food bag and spilled tiny kitty kibbles on the laundry room floor. I thought it would be fun to let them 'go fishing' and grab at the food pieces from under the laundry room door. I also thought it'd be funny if I filmed it. 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

The Chin Scratch

Spring Flowers + Cute Kitties

Yesterday my parents, Kenneth and I visited my sister, Brittney, and her boyfriend, Cam, in Cincinnati. We had supper at Cactus Pear (they have delicious shrimp tacos and blood orange margaritas) and got a tour of Britt and Cam's apartment.

Friday, April 11, 2014

Rosemary Plant + Dark Chocolate Ice Cream

Whole Foods and Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams have teamed up for a program called Plants for Pints. If you buy a pint of Jeni's ice cream at Whole Foods or make a donation to Green Columbus at the register, you can take home an herb planted in a repurposed Jeni's pint.

Gluten-Free Chocolate for Breakfast Smoothie + Recipe

I see no problem with having chocolate, or dessert for that matter, for breakfast, especially if it's something like a muffin or sweet bread. I don't have dessert for breakfast every day, but I usually have a little bit of chocolate with my morning coffee. This smoothie is a healthy way to indulge in delicious chocolate, even if you don't eat dessert items first thing in the morning. It even has fruit in it!

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Ombre Emma

Emma likes to stay up on the latest trends, so we added an ombre filter to her photo tonight. Isn't she gorgeous?

Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Happy Draw a Bird Day

Happy Draw A Bird Day! This special holiday is in memory of a special girl, Dorie Cooper. To try and cheer up her uncle, who was in an English hospital after being injured in WWII, Dorie asked him to draw her a bird. He drew a picture of a robin (which wouldn't be the robin we'd think of in the US, this is an English robin), which Dorie laughingly told him wasn't very good, but she would hang it up in her room anyway. Her honesty and cheerfulness encouraged her uncle and every time Dorie came to visit, he and the other wounded soldiers had bird drawing contests. 

Sadly, Dorie died at a very young age. She was struck and killed by a car at age 10, just three years after starting the bird drawing contests with her uncle. Soldiers, nurses and doctors from the ward her uncle had been in filled Dorie's coffin with drawings of birds. Dorie is now remembered by those she touched on her birthday, April 8th. They honor her memory by drawing birds. 

I was deeply struck by this story. What Dorie started was so simple, but it made such a difference in the lives of so many. 

I celebrated Draw A Bird Day by drawing a burrowing owl in the journal, 642 Things to Draw, that I share with my sister. I love owls - they're beautiful birds! 

Did you draw a bird for Draw A Bird Day? If you did, please share it with DABDAY.com

Monday, April 7, 2014

Gluten-Free Cream Biscuits for a Rainy Day + Recipe

I was craving biscuits and soup after being out in the cold rain today. I'm grateful it's not snowing, but I'm tired of the clouds and cold! I'm hoping for warm and sunny spring days. Until then, I have warm soup and these gluten-free biscuits.

Sunday, April 6, 2014

Pileated Woodpecker!

Kenneth and I spotted this gorgeous Pileated Woodpecker today at Highbanks Metro Park. He was about thirty feet from the path on the Dripping Rock Trail. I think he was looking for food as he pecked away at the tree. He kept shifting his weight and turning to look in the hole he was creating. 

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Gluten-Free Strawberry-Blackberry Crumble + Recipe

I saw this recipe today on POPSUGAR - it's a strawberry crumble with only five ingredients. It looked delicious, so with just a few changes (it brings the ingredient total up from five to nine) I was able to make it gluten-free. It's pretty good - I'm sure it would be delicious with some vanilla ice cream too!

Friday, April 4, 2014

Exercises for the Family – Yoga

To help educate and inform the public on important health issues, the Columbus branch of the American Heart Association is collaborating with local bloggers to share their stories about heart heath and their own nutrition and fitness tips. March was nutrition and fitness month and I will be sharing my favorite tips for exercising with your family.

Exercises for the Family – Hiking

Scenes from Hayden Falls (left and top right) and Battelle Darby Creek (bottom right)

To help educate and inform the public on important health issues, the Columbus branch of the American Heart Association is collaborating with local bloggers to share their stories about heart heath and their own nutrition and fitness tips. March was nutrition and fitness month and I will be sharing my favorite tips for exercising with your family.

Darby Smart

I love crafting and making new things! Darby Smart is a company that makes it so easy to create craft projects. Through their website they sell fun craft kits and supplies. Everything you need to complete a project (including instructions) is included in their kits. I had to try one!

Misty Morning

Thursday, April 3, 2014

Green Tutorial: Beaded Lucky Bamboo Bottle

This project is fun and easy to make - and the lucky bamboo is so cheerful! I had the idea for this project after I received my first Darby Smart craft kit last month. I bought the March edition of the monthly To DIY FOR box, the contents of which are a surprise! Inside my box was a wood burning hot pen, a reusable stencil, two cutting boards, a practice piece of wood, a tube of green beads in a bottle and an instruction sheet for making Wood Burned Cutting Boards.

I'm still practicing using the wood burning hot pen, it's taking me a while to master and I want to have a good technique before I burn the cutting boards. I'll share how they turn out on the blog!
The idea for this project came from another Darby Smart kit, the Confetti Champagne Flutes. The flutes look like they have little beads along the outside of the glass and the green color of my beads in a bottle made me think of plants!

Little House with a Livy

She's so cute! And extremely accommodating (I set her down on the side table in front of the house and she walked in and sat down in it!). I love my Livy!

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

Happy Birthday Emma!

Emma is five years old today! She is such a sweet, goofy cat! Here are some of Emma's baby photos, from when I first brought her home. She was found by some residents at Ohio University's Student Health Center who asked me if I could help them with finding her a home (they had just moved to Athens). I was in the right place at the right time!

Green Tutorial: Large Jar Terrarium

Terrariums are so much fun! Making a terrarium is like building your own little world - a micro habitat you can set on a shelf and admire (or forget about - if you build a closed terrarium correctly, you should be able to leave it alone for years, or even decades, like this one!).