Tuesday 31 October 2023

Eggs For A Diabetic Breakfast

In our journey with diabetes we've been looking more and more at our diet. 

I think we eat fairly well. We have a well rounded diet that provides all the stuff we need to live active lives. 

But since my daughter has been wearing a CGM (Continuous Glucose Monitor) we can certainly see where spikes occur. 

One was right after breakfast. It was a "traditional" western breakfast of sugary cereal with some fruit juice (normally apple). 

A friend suggest we tried egg on toast. She still needs the carbs but they are slower burning from the (homemade) toast than cereal would be and with the protein from the egg should keep her full until breakfast. 

We did a week of it and noticed that although you still get a spike (that's just eating any carbs and the insulin having to catch up) it was way less, often keeping her in target for the whole morning.  

It was so good I thought I'd change my breakfast and try it as well. No more 10 O'clock slump! 

Then the other two wanted to try it and suddenly we didn't have enough eggs! 

So we went and got some POL hens (Point Of Lay) that will hopefully lay all through winter. I was hoping 5 would be enough but the oy is insisting on two eggs every morning....

The video above is a fun little journey out with my boy to buy the hens and getting them set up in their new home. I also talk a little about diabetes on there and about the blood sugar spikes. It's amazing how much it makes me think about what we're all eating. We've made some very easy switches and I'm sure it's benefiting us all. 

Squash instead of potato for some evening meals

Brown rice instead of white (way more taste and texture to it)

Wholegrain Pasta (tastes just the same)

Adding some Emmer Flour to our morning loaf (nowhere near a wholemeal loaf but still rises really well and tastes great. 

Careful with the mixing of some foods - carbs and fats are a nightmare (pizza is a nightmare that sends her levels into a random plain)

With these little changes I seem to have lost a little weight (Hopefully don't have much to loose, but it's been quite noticeable around my stomach) and felt fuller longer. That said I've also band myself from buying any of the "rubbish" I normally eat. I still have to buy sweet for my daughter but tell her to hide them in her room! 

Makes me think that for next year I might plan a "diabetic friendly" garden with the foods we've found to work best for her levels, although everyone is different. Lots of protein and veggies. We were wrongly told that some foods would be "free" and not need insulin, like carrots as a snack, but so far we've found that they make her levels shoot up without the injection. 

#### Please remember before commenting that Type 1 Diabetes and Type 2 Diabetes are completely different things. She's not eating her way out of this one, her pancreas just doesn't work like it's supposed to anymore. A completely low carb or carb free diet doesn't work for Type one sufferers, nor would it be good for a young growing body like hers. ####

Hope you enjoy the video!

What food makes you "slump" a few hours later?

Saturday 28 October 2023

A 10th Birthday

 I know I keep saying it, but it never fails to amaze me how fast their childhood is slipping by! 

It doesn't seem five minutes since I was announcing that the Middlest was born, now all of a sudden she's in double digits. 

She certainly wants to be grown up! We often joke she's already a teenager (her temperament is a little too similar to my own), she is the first one to offer to help, does jobs around the house without being asked, works hard when she needs to. She's funny, smart, caring and thoughtful. Honestly everyone who knows her loves her. 

Thursday 26 October 2023

Always Baking...

 The children only need the slightest nudge to do some baking.

Tuesday night was the perfect example of this. I had a urge to eat an apple pie, and not being too short of apples decided to see if one of the children would be up for making me one. 

The Middlest leapt at the opportunity and set to work making some pastry. 

The Eldest came in then and looked a little disappointed that she hadn't got in on the act, so I suggested she make some bread from scratch. 

Tuesday 24 October 2023

Rodent Proofing The Apple Store

If you read this blog I don't need to tell you that I love storing my apples for as long as possible. As I mentioned in my last post, it saves us so much money and I hate seeing food waste anyway. 

But last year (and the year before) we had a bit of an issue with the apples stored in the shed. The mice got into them! 

Sunday 22 October 2023

Why Grow So Many Of The Same Variety?

 So there is a question I get asked at my talks more than any other - Why do I have so many varieties?

I use it! Or try to at least...

Friday 20 October 2023

Split Octagonal Handle - Article In F&C

 A while back I got asked by my woodworking magazine editor if I fancied doing an article on making a different door handle. 

I have a weird aversion to making or fitting handles. I'm not sure why, I just don't like them very much. So I saw this as a good challenge. 

Wednesday 18 October 2023

Hefting Chickens

 The term hefting normally refers to sheep. In some highland sheep you can buy them "hefted" where they already know their range and boundaries, taught by the older sheep in the flock. It stops them wondering too far on common land. 

I use the term with chickens, rightly or wrongly, to mean they know where to roost at night. Something they often have to be trained to do. 

It's a fairly simple process, where you keep the chickens in a coop for pen for a few days. They'll then see this as their home and go back there at night. 

Sunday 15 October 2023

Cucamelon - Love IT Or HATE It?

Or Fruit really...

I have given my talk on unusual fruit and veg many dozens of times now, often people have only heard of a few of the edibles in the first talk, there's a bit of what I call "suburban foraging" in there as well so people sometimes already have things growing without realising they can eat it. But if they have tried growing something it's often the cutely named Cucamelon - and often I get heckled for it! 

This spindly little vine is also called the Mexican Sour Gherkin or the Mouse Melon, I think giving it a cute name has certainly helped people try it out. 

The main reason I get called out for saying this is a great think to try is people seem to think it has a tough skin. Each fruit will grow to the size of a grape then it doesn't get any bigger, it just gets tougher! They need to be picked really regularly to be a good edible crop. 

We've been growing them (and saving the seed from them) since 2014 and they've very much become a garden staple in our household. The children insist I grow them every year and love when they come into baring. I've also made pickles with them.

A few plants will give you something tasty to snack on while you're working in the garden. They take up very little room as well, just growing happily amongst your other plants. i tend to grow them in the polytunnel or greenhouse, but have had really successful crops outside as well (although they then crop a little later). This year they've been late to come into fruit, but then I did plant them really late. 

I put a short little video together to show what I think of these great little fruits. Give it a watch and let me know what you think. 

Have you grown cucamelons? Do you think they're worth growing?

Friday 13 October 2023

Apple Day

 Every year our village has an Apple Day. The last time we went was in 2013 just before our Middlest was born! I'm not sure why we haven't gone since, there's always something that gets in the way, our weekends can be a bit manic at times. 

It was nice as my brother came over with his two children, they all get on so well it was a lovely day together. 

Wednesday 11 October 2023

Garden Club Talks About Produce

I enjoyed a giving great last night at a little village called May Hill in Gloucestershire. 

It's the second time I've talked here and it's a great little club. 

One thing I have heard quite a few times about my talks is that is that I'm one of the few that is giving them about growing produce and what to do with it (in our area anyway). A man told me tonight how nice it was not to have a talk about flowers for a change (I had just given my talk on preserving the harvest). 

The man had a great story about how his dad used to store food down the well to keep it cool, but how a few times a year, even though it's 500ft above sea level, the Severn Bore would affect the pressure in the well and knock the bucket over!

I have talks about unusual fruit and Veg, about preserving and one about growing fruit for as much of the year as possible. I had a couple more talks booked last week for next year and already have some booked for 2025, it's already looking like quite a good number. 

If you're Herefordshire, Worcestershire or Gloucestershire make sure you book me in! 

What do you think, would you have me speak at your club?

Sunday 8 October 2023

Building The Ultimate POSH Potting Bench

 A friend asked me to build his mum a potting bench. He is a another carpenter like me, but is absolutely snowed under with work at the moment. 

I thought it very much fitted with my "brand" and decided with would make a great magazine article. I also decided to film it. 

Friday 6 October 2023

Woodworking Crafts Article- Gooseberry Scoop & Getting Told I'm too Expensive...

So this month sees another article in a woodworking magazine. This is a particular favourite of mine - it's my gooseberry scoop! 

I made this back when the berries were still on the bushes and summer had some promise to it. It was something I really enjoyed making. 

Wednesday 4 October 2023

Scouts This week - Archery & Morse Code

 The start of the week always seems set up to kill us with how much we have to do. Especially with my eldest who has scouts (Monday night), and helped with Beavers (Monday night) and went to Cubs (Tuesday night) this week! Pretty full on start. 

Beavers was great where we got to try a little bit of archery. It's nice to see how the activity centre worker got them to listen, very practised patter that worked great. I always feel I learn a little bit from them. 

Monday 2 October 2023

Last Of The Rhubarb

Our eldest was keen to make a crumble for tea yesterday and was keen to see if we still had some rhubarb growing we could use. 

The usual advice is not to pick it too late as it weakens plant. But we have three huge plants and haven't taken any this year, so it won't do it any harm. It was starting to die back anyway. 
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