Sunscreen Reviews for Skin Cancer Awareness Month

Everyone who knows me, knows that I am serious about sunscreen. Why am I so serious? Both my great grandmother and mother were advocates for wearing sunscreen regularly.  My mother had very fair skin and would burn very easily, while my great grandmother loved the sun, but later had to deal with skin cancer lesions on her legs and face.  I learned that you shouldn’t wait for a sunny day to put on sunscreen after I  got very burned at a track meet in high school, on a cloudy day.  Why would I should I put on sunscreen on a cloudy day?  I was wrong.
 
Some people still don’t get how important it is though. For instance, my dad thinks that he doesn’t need to wear sunscreen unless it’s hot outside, as if the heat has something to do with a sunburn.  UGH….It’s a constant battle, met with eye rolls and griping.  He will never let me forget the day that he went into “Sam Fora” (how he pronounces Sephora….not sure why, but it makes us laugh) to get Shiseido sunscreen at my urging.  He was so “embarrassed” because I made him go into a “chick store” (wait… you’re telling me he never picked up feminine products for my mom at the drug store??).… Read Full Post
Gluten Free Peanut Butter Cookies

Fabulously Decadent Gluten Free Peanut Butter Cookies

Peanut butter cookies have always been a favorite cookie of mine.  They remind me of childhood and my mother teaching me how to make the crisscross pattern with the fork.  According to Wikipedia:

The peanut butter cookie originated in the United States….The early peanut butter cookies were rolled thin and cut into shapes. They were also dropped and made into balls. They did not have fork marks. The first reference to the famous criss-cross marks created with fork tines was published in the Schenectady Gazette on July 1, 1932. 

When I started my gluten free journey in 2007, finding a good gluten free flour was very difficult.  This lead me to forgo flour all together when I could.  That’s exactly what I did with this recipe for gluten free peanut butter cookies, making it more decadent take on the traditional peanut butter cookie.

Gluten Free Peanut Butter Cookies

This is such a simple recipe, that you probably have all the ingredients in your pantry right now.  When you’re preparing them, they are very thick and remind me of the consistency of fudge.  Because they don’t use flour, they are more dense and concentrated, much like a flourless chocolate cake.

Enjoy!

 

Gluten Free Peanut Butter Cookies
This gluten-free version of a classic does not require a special flour blend; it can be assembled with basic pantry staples.
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dating tips i learned from my mom

5 Life and Dating Tips I Learned From My Mom

I thought I would share these Life and Dating Tips with you because, 1) I just celebrated my 12th wedding anniversary, so these tips obviously work, 2) it’s close to Mother’s Day and it seemed appropriate.  I lost my mother to brain cancer in 2006 and I miss her dearly.  The best advice when dealing with grief came from my husband, who lost his own mother to cancer when he was 18.  He said, the pain and loss get’s easier with each passing day and he was right.  Now I can think of her and be happy instead of sad.  I can talk about her without crying.  
 

First, I wanted to give you a bit of background on my mother’s health.  She was diagnosed with a brain tumor when she was 16, it was the ‘70s and medical technology was not what it is now, but she went into remission and was cancer free for over 25 years.  She got cancer again in the early 2000’s because of the radiation she received in her teens.  So, I think I was so lucky to have a healthy mom until I was a young adult.  Not only that, but she was able to attend my wedding.

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Banana Cake

Claire’s Amazing Banana Cake

I’m getting back to my baking roots with this Banana Cake recipe.  You can make it with regular wheat flour, or with Authentic Foods Steve’s Gluten Free Cake Flour Blend like I do.  I usually make Banana Cake on a whim because I have lots of ripe bananas around and I’m not feeling like making banana bread.  It’s a full on layer cake, so it can be time intensive, but the results are outstanding (if I do say so myself).  One trick I do (since it’s just me and my husband at home), is get single serve containers and cut the cake to fit the containers and put them in the freezer.  The frozen cake can last up to 2 months, just thaw it at room temperature for about 30 minutes before eating.  I learned this trick from my cousin who used to bake wedding cakes.

Several of my friends are always down to try out my recipes.  Recently I meet two friends for dinner and I decided to bring each of them some frozen cake.  I think they thought is was weird that I gave them frozen cake, until they tried it.  Both texted me later about how delicious the cake was.  When your friends like it as much as you do, it’s got to be great, right?!?!… Read Full Post

Rent the Runway Review

Rent the Runway Review

Today I am going to be doing a review of the clothing and accessory rental service Rent the Runway.  Please note that this is not a sponsored post, I just wanted to give an honest review.  I’ve used this service, the unlimited service specifically, for over a year now.  This really ties into my  Buy Less, Buy Better philosophy because basically you’re not buying anything.  It’s the sharing economy, but for clothing…..now wait, if sharing clothes freaks you out, everything is always very clean before it gets to you and you’re not sharing personal items like underwear or bathing suits, which would be very gross.  

Here are some pros and cons of using Rent the Runway that I’ve experienced during the past year.

Pros

  • You Get 3 Different Items at a Time– the 3 items can be anything from jewelry, handbags, dressed, to jackets and coats.  I use it mostly for dresses and outfits for specific events. it’s been great for me because I go to a lot of events here in LA.  I was becoming so unhappy with what I had in my closet and I could never find what I wanted in the stores exactly when I needed it.  Rent the Runway has been great for this reason.
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