The search continues…

I received another call today from Great Harvest – informing me that they decided to go with someone else. Not totally sure why I haven’t been able to get a job so far – but I guess I’ll just have to keep looking! Maybe the perfect job will jump out at me once I’m living in Lynden and am a bit more familiar with the town. I would love to find a job that I can walk or ride a bike to!
Oh – my move into the new place has been postponed a day (they need to paint and stuff) so I will be able to get in on Monday!

I added wheat back into my diet yesterday! Had a French Dip sandwich from Billy McHales. Also at a bunch of garlic bread today 🙂 So far haven’t noticed any adverse reactions. The garlic bread had some melted cheese on it so dairy was re-introduced today. No reactions from that either – although I wouldn’t really expect any from that little amount. I’m pretty sure I just need to reduce the amount of wheat and dairy in my diet because I will probably have an easier time with the whole staying in shape thing! Very happy to be eating bread again!

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Bread and Bakeries

I’ve had two interviews at the Great Harvest Bread Company! The first was your basic interview – with lots of questions and four people sitting there staring at you. The second was this morning – starting at 7:15 and it consisted of me just hanging out in the bakery… pretending like I was competent and knew how to knead bread dough 🙂 Apparently they can’t decide between me and this other gal so they’re trying us both out… how do I “beat” someone I know nothing about?! It was fun though…fun people, fun to get my hands back in some dough and flour 🙂

Interesting experience too because the only real bakery experience was with the Moscow Food Co-Op – and even though there are plenty of similarities, there are also a few large differences. Mostly with the way the dough is shaped or kneaded. At the Coop we SHAPED our loaves… they really ended up looking like little bread loaves before they were even in the pan. We also folded most batches of dough part way through letting it rise… and we let the loaves proof or rise for a longer amount of time before actually going in the oven. The Coop was also trying to make “crusty artisan” type bread.
At Great Harvest the dough is pretty much kneaded into a smooth ball and then rolled into a log a little longer than the pan so that when it’s put in the pan the middle is kind of “perky”. As far as I can tell none of the doughs are folded. The rise and baking I’m not sure about yet – although they are much more careful about temperatures then the Coop… and they are making pretty much all soft loaves.

It’s just interesting to see the differences. One thing that will be huge (and hopefully not to hard to get used to, if I get this job) is the pace that Great Harvest keeps. Many more doughs a day – and I thought we were pretty steady for the little while I was there but apparently they normally go MUCH faster with less people. Well – we’ll see if a get a job offer… until then…

I am excited to try their Gluten-Free Bread sometime – job or no.

Speaking of bread… here is a wonderful Blue Cheese Spread that goes really fantastically with a lot of different breads!

Blue Cheese Spread

3 lb Cream Cheese – room temp
2 cups Walnut pieces – toasted
1 cup Sour Cream
1 Tbsp Black Pepper

1 bunch Green Onions – chopped
1.25 lb Blue Cheese Crumbles
1 bunch Parsley – chopped

Combine the first four ingredients and mix well. Add the last three ingredients and mix until incorporated. (I think the reason for this is so that those last three don’t completely disintegrate). After it’s all mixed – taste it and add a little more pepper or some salt if needed. Serve with bread or crostini or roast beef or whatever your taste buds tell you would taste good! Enjoy!

I love this spread so much because the blue cheese is really flavorful without being overwhelming. So yummy…

More change is in the air…

Today I was woken up by a call from the Great Harvest Bread Company here in Bellingham – asking me to come back in for a second “interview”! This one will consist of me pretty much hanging out for a couple of hours and trying to prove that I have the perfect personality to be the best addition to that group. He told me that they just can’t decide between me and this other gal so their having us both come in on different days to hang out for a while. What do I say to that?? “Sounds great! What’s my competition like??” Oh well… if it’s meant to be it’s meant to be – at least that’s what I’ve been telling myself for the last three months 🙂

Sunday is when I will be able to start moving into our new house! SOOO excited! We won’t have to be stuck in this tiny pod of a room anymore… and I’ll have a kitchen again! And we’ll get to have our kitties back with us! So many reasons to be excited…

I’ve decided it is TIME to get back in shape. I am tired of not being happy with the way I see my body and I know that if I worked out even a little bit every day – that would change. Plus I have a family that can provide a home gym set-up as well as built in running partners in the forms of Kealen and Noah! Of course – tonight Kealen’s leg “hurt” so I ran while he rode his bike in circles around me… still motivating though! Great summer body – here I come! (Just in time for winter clothes)

Possible new job…New house…More energy and better legs 🙂 Fun stuff!

Gabe!


I realized I haven’t said a word about my new little brother yet 🙂 My parents are adopting a little boy from foster care! His name is Gabriel (Gabe), he just turned seven, and after some really intense struggles with the state and other people – he has been placed permanently with our family! Which means that even though they can’t adopt him for another six months… he’s ours and here to stay! This little guy needs so much love, and in return he is very loving 🙂 He doesn’t like the color of his hair or his skin because his step-dad told him over and over how ugly he was. He doesn’t like his name because his mom gave it to him. Not to mention the abuse and abandonment. So we try to rub his head at every opportunity and tell him how handsome his curls are! We tell him how we’ve always wanted a little brown brother and my mom says how she’s always wanted a Gabriel (which is true)!

This whole situation is going to be a growing experience for all of us – but it is being made easier by a little boy who it TRYing to love his Forever Family!

Welcome to the family Gabe… we love you already!

Going wheat and dairy free…

I’m experimenting… no wheat or dairy for two weeks. So far so good – Friday is when I can add some back into my diet.

What is the reason for this madness you might ask??? Why torture yourself and cut out some of the best things in life???

Well… I’m pretty sure I have allergies or intolerance’s to both wheat and dairy – so I thought cutting it out and then slowly adding some back in might give me an idea of how sever the allergy, etc. really is. I haven’t really noticed a difference in how I feel these last weeks – but it’ll be interesting to see if I have a strong reaction after Friday! Also – I just wanted to see if I could do it… how difficult it would be to cut these two out. You know me… very interested in alternative diets 🙂 It’s been hard – and I’ve really missed both wheat and dairy (mostly bread and cheese), but I think it’s mostly been made difficult by not having a kitchen I can really use. Being in limbo in Bellingham really puts a limit on the variety of food you can eat 🙂

I have had fun rediscovering a few things that I CAN eat – that I’d kind of forgotten about! Such as lovely ripe tomatoes with mayo, or just salt and pepper. REAL tacos (the corn tortilla, chopped chicken, onion, cilantro, lime type) thankfully there are a number of option for those around here! Lots of fresh fresh berries (blue berries and raspberries right now). Oh the summer options!

My sister Hannah was super sweet and made me no-bake cookies, with almond milk instead of regular. The perfect chocolate peanut butter taste 🙂

Oh – did I mention that I’m cheating just the tiniest bit and still eating things like butter and soy sauce? If you really HAD to totally cut dairy and wheat out – those two would be gone too.

So, long story short – it’s been an interesting experience… but it’s not quite over – I’ll keep you posted!

Life in Bellingham…

Here we are in Bellingham! Ayla and I moved to Bellingham Washington at the end of June! We finally found a place to live – that we can’t get into until the first – but huge relief anyways. I still don’t have a job… the search continues… Ayla and I have managed to stay friends even though we are sharing a postage stamp of a room and a “full” size bed. I think one of the hardest things to handle so far (other than missing friends and being in a strange place) is not really being able to cook… I don’t feel like I can use the kitchen here and there isn’t really room in the fridge for anything more than a few veggies. Can’t wait to get into our house!