This morning in the garden

I had to drag myself to work this morning. I love my job don’t get me wrong but after voting and a lovely walk I thought I’d get the 8.53 bus and do a little gardening before hand.

The idea behind me little square is to attract wildlife like slowworms (hence the slow worm cave with the blue water bowl on top) and frogs, little frog cave further back if you can spot in in the photos below.

I also moved some borage seedlings to a better spot, yes you can move them when they’re about an inch long if you’re careful, they grow quite tall and the bees love them. I hope it attracts a lot more wildlife

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The slow worm cave
The slow worm cave

 

I have healed

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I love my age, I have learned
I love my scars, I have lived
I love my body, I am unashamed
I love my life, I nearly lost it
I come from love, I have empathy
I do not judge, I have made mistakes
My negativity is fuel and can make into love
I am protected by these things, I have learned

Cow’s milk sensitive gluten rant

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It’s fantastic there is so much more awareness of food sensitivities these days. I use the word sensitivity in place of allergy and intolerance to group them together easily.

I can’t have cow’s milk, or beef, this includes butter, cream, whey, gelatine, yogurt and cheese. These make my blood pressure drop and vomit, sorry, TMI
I’m ok with bread and therefore gluten.

I think it’s totally fab that there are so many gluten free options now and it must be awful to be allergic or intolerant to gluten.

BUT! Getting ranty now
I have had so many experiences in the last few years where I’ve asked if, for example the range of cakes on display in a cafe are free from cow’s milk, the reply back in the last few years has always been ‘oh here is our gluten free range…’ me ‘yeah, thanks, but what have you got that’s free from cow’s milk?’ and they look at me as if I’ve asked them to explain Einstein’s theory of special relativity! Run off come back with a folder and guess what? NOTHING without cow’s milk!

I have even known people to appear to confuse gluten free with food sensitivity free. Once in a farm shop in Suffolk, I asked the question ‘is there any butter in those flapjacks?’ the lady behind the counter took me off to show me the wonderful and diverse gluten free range they had on show, which she was oh so proud of. ‘Great’ I said, and I meant it, gluten in one of those things that is difficult to avoid and for celiacs dangerous to have, so I wouldn’t dream of taking this away from those that can’t have it. So I polity asked again, ‘is there anything there without cow’s milk?’ her reply ‘these are free from gluten’ in a reassuring tone. I took a deep breath and said, ‘thanks, but do you have anything free from cow’s milk, butter etc?’ her reply ‘this is our gluten free range’, I’m always polite and didn’t want to cause trouble, so I went back to the flapjack which I really wanted and managed to get out of her that there was no butter in them. Later on I found myself wondering ‘does she think gluten free and food sensitivity free are one and the same thing?

There seems to be gluten free options everywhere which I don’t want to stop, but it seems a bit unfair to be sitting in a restaurant while my boyfriend guiltily eats chocolate cake while I can’t and look on salivating.

It’s seems easier to get soya hot chocolate these days which is really cool, but if you can’t have cow’s milk and you love chocolate it can be a real pain, and makes me feel a wee bit discriminated against.

When I see pubs with a sign saying ‘Gluten free options here!’ Sorry but I feel really left out, ‘what about people that can’t have egg, or cow’s milk like me?’

In a reply from Allergy UK, when I asked how many people are sensitive to cow’s milk to gluten they tweeted
“The same amount of people are sensitive to egg as are to gluten and cow’s milk”
I have some friends that are very ill if they have gluten, but why is it the poster child for food sensitivities when it”s not the most common allergy? I am very ill if I have cow’s milk, some people can be seriously ill.

It actually puts me off going to business networking lunches, or round people’s for dinner, I don’t like inconveniencing anyone but I can’t afford to be ill as a business owner.

At a networking lunch in Sudbury last week, after establishing by email, where I listed what I couldn’t have and that I wasn’t a vegetarian, vegan or gluten intolerant. I got there to be told it’s ok everyone is having chicken. I was a bit dubious this would be OK from experience. When the food arrived the chicken was in a sauce. So I asked is there cow’s milk in it? To cut a long story short there was and I was happy with my ham sandwich. I often say ‘Im happy with a plate of chips’ the response ‘we can’t let you have just chips!’ my reply ‘NO REALLY, keep it simple, please, I know I can eat chips’ Chips are risk free, high in potassium and as someone without a colon having some extra salt every now and again does me good, yes please give me chips to make it easier for you to feed me and for me not worry!

And yes, I risked the milk being in the bread. Yes, they sometimes add skimmed milk powder to bread, what’s that about? So that’s Russian Roulette for me.

Off the gluten subject but still on the food sensitivity issue, here’s a conversation I had in a restaurant when asking about cow’s milk:

Me ‘So it’s got cow’s milk in it then’
Waiter ‘no, natural yogurt’
Me ‘So it’s got cow’s milk in it then?’
Waiter ‘no, natural yogurt!’
Me ‘that is made from cow’s milk’
Waiter ‘oh, I’ll be right back…’
He came back with chicken and chips and I was very happy, keep it simple I say!

FYI – what cow’s milk is or can be in:

  • Dark chocolate – yes it can! If your cow’s milk sensitive always check the label!
  • Crisps – sometimes
  • Bread – sometimes
  • Cheese – obviously
  • Butter – obviously
  • Butter  milk – obviously
  • Skimmed milk power – obviously
  • Yogurt – obviously
  • Whey – obviously
  • Cereal – sometimes
  • Margarine – ALWAYS! Unless it states otherwise like Pure
  • Cake – almost always
  • Biscuits – almost always
  • James Martin’s rice and curry! Some people seem to think you need to add butter to rice AND curry! Thanks, now I have to reply to people yes I can have curry as long as you don’t add butter to it now
  • There’ll be more as I think of it

So to conclude, thank you to all those helping awareness for food sensitive people and to the eateries proving options for all of us, please more options for us non gluten, food sensitivity  people, thanks.

16 Years Woman and Girl – website developer :)

16 years to the day I started at Burnbank in Ipswich designing and building websites at the hight of the dot com boom, oh how things have changed.

They created a separate company called NetFXS, and I had three bosses, a graphic design one, the boss of Burnbank, and a programmer and I felt like I has idea what I was doing. In fact I did when it came to design and website building, having just graduated with a degree in graphic design in 1999. But when it came to liaising with customers, project management, writing quotes. Totally thrown in at the deep end at 23 years old.

It was the dot com boom and everyone thought the internet was the answer to everything. I knew better, I knew it was just another form of media that one could use for lots of things.

I made a few mistakes at first, and was expected to know more than I had been taught, which didn’t help.

Now 16 years later, running my own company (polyspiral.com). Nothing compares to going it alone for learning things. I think I’ve learnt more in the last 6 years than I ever did at school, college or working for someone else.

I’m proud of my achievements, still lots more to do