I know you’ve been waiting anxiously for the results of the giveaway for The Whole Life Nutrition Cookbook. I don’t blame you … it’s such a worthy prize. The winner of the giveaway was determined the old-fashioned way: slips of paper in a hat. (Okay, it wasn’t really a hat … it was the promotional gift bag that my new cell phone came in yesterday. Hey, it was a handy receptacle and it worked!) Mr. GFE, who is completely unbiased, closed his eyes and pulled out the winning entry. And, the winner is … christina. Because more than one Christina commented, to clarify, this Christina’s comment was:

“We love making green smoothies too! I would love to win a copy of this book. My daughter has had skin problems this past year, and I’m experimenting with gluten free. It looks like it’s the answer for her. So I would love any help I can get. And free is even better! Thanks.”

Congratulations, christina! (Note to christina–Please send me an email via sidebar link with your mailing address.) Thank you all for participating in this giveaway and reading gfe! Of course, special thanks to Tom Malterre and Ali Segersten of Whole Life Nutrition for sponsoring the giveaway of their truly wonderful cookbook/kitchen and nutrition resource book. If you’re not already a reader of Ali and Tom’s sites, Whole Life Nutrition and The Whole Life Nutrition Kitchen, please check them out. You can get a frequent dose of their wisdom and recipes at those sites, but if you want to order your own copy of their current cookbook, you can do so at their site or on Amazon.

I always believe wholeheartedly in celebrating life, but after losing some friends unexpectedly these last few weeks, I’m focusing extra hard on those celebrations right now. Last week, there was my parents’ wedding anniversary, which we celebrated with glorious fruit … and some chocolate. Today, I’m sharing photos of life, life being celebrated, and what I think is fun stuff in general—hope you’ll agree and enjoy these shots. Some photos are additional scenes from our motorcycle trip (taken from the back of the bike, of course), some are recent ones from our mountain property, one is from a visit to a dear friend’s farm, one is from our yard, some are from a recent trip to the National Zoo, and some are from recent meetings of my beloved gluten intolerance and celiac support group (with links to gfe recipes shown below it).

I hope everyone has a wonderful holiday weekend planned … summer’s last hurrah, so to speak. We’ll be heading south tomorrow to Mr. GFE’s college reunion, with a few other interesting stops along the way. The reunion is not an official, college-sanctioned event—just a gathering of a large group of old friends. It will be held in the beautiful mountains of North Carolina along the New River. Sunny days and cool nights are in the forecast. That and good friends sounds like the perfect way to spend any weekend to us! Oh, and yes, it will definitely be a celebration. We’ll be seeing friends we only see every few years and others we haven’t seen in many years. Of course, I’ll be making my brown sugar chocolate chip cookies before we hit the road; everyone will be expecting them. Maybe I’ll make my flourless peanut butter cookies, too, for any peanut butter fanatics.

Motorcycle Trip New England 2009 062

Motorcycle Trip New England 2009 225

Mtns Aug Our Rapid

Mtns Aug Shore

Mica Mine Farm Sunflowers

Chocolate Cake and Mtns 043

Waddle Crane Aug

Beautiful Duck 3


June Meeting 2

Great Salad, Sweet Potato Chili (Variation of Stephanie’s recipe), and Pulled Pork 

July Meeting


Look for a discussion post in the next few days and then next Monday, I’ll be participating in Amy’s new Slightly Indulgent Mondays blog carnival. Check out her latest post, too. She has some very exciting news—another celebration! Likewise, Carol of Simply … Gluten Free just shared the exciting news that she’s celebrating. There cannot be enough celebrations!

Last, an apology … I had actually planned to participate this past Monday in Amy’s Slightly Indulgent Mondays blog carnival, but there was a glitch on my part. As a result, some of you who subscribe to gfe received an email with a link to a post that didn’t exist. I sincerely apologize for the error, but if you did received that erroneous email, at least you got a preview of the recipe I’ll be sharing on Monday!

Not just gf, but gfe!

Full Disclosure/Disclaimer: This post may contain one or more affiliate links. If you purchase through them, your cost will always be the same, but I will receive a small commission. Thanks for the support! Read the full disclaimer here.


21 Responses to “Celebrations”

  1. Amy Green - Simply Sugar & Gluten-Free on September 3rd, 2009 10:10 am

    Shirley – I love your pictures. It’s like reality TV but even better! Are you in the last pic? The meal looks incredible…just ate breakfast but would love to fill my plate up again with some of those incredible looking dishes, especially the veggies.

    Thanks so much for mentioning Slightly Indulgent Mondays and mentioning my recent celebration. Sending you a HUGE hug and best wishes for a fabulous holiday weekend!

    • Shirley on September 3rd, 2009 11:06 pm

      Hi, Amy–Thanks! Ha Ha … reality TV. ;-) Reality is so much better than reality TV, don’t you think?

      I’m not in that pic. I’m behind the camera per usual. Our support group meetings are phenomenal. We always have a variety of amazing salads, veggies, and fruit dishes in addition to entree-type dishes. And, every bit gets eaten!

      Oh, you’re quite welcome, dear. I need to catch up at your site. I won’t miss out this Monday.

      BTW, I am sitting on the love seat in our bedroom in the log cabin B&B … wearing my complimentary terry cloth robe and all curled up with my warm laptop while Mr. GFE snoozes. ;-) I’ll be sleeping in tomorrow morning though … until our breakfast is served at 9. :-)


  2. Diane-thewholegang on September 3rd, 2009 12:21 pm

    Congrats Christina! Thank you Shirley for all of these great photos of life. I’d like to have a seat in the chair waiting in the river. That looks divine. It’s so easy to take life for granted. I do it everyday. Thank you for the reminder to stop and check out what I’m taking for granted.

    • Shirley on September 3rd, 2009 11:11 pm

      Diane–Hi, dear. That seat in the river is usually a fabulous one! If you position the chair in the rapids, you can experience a natural jacuzzi. :-) I did check the online river stats and the water temp has dropped 7 degrees since last week though. Shiver. Fall is rapidly approaching it seems.

      Thanks so much for your kind words. We all need to remind each other from time to time … next time, you’ll be making me stop and take notice. ;-)


  3. CinnamonQuill on September 3rd, 2009 12:50 pm

    That photo of the sunflower field is gorgeous. Super.

    • Shirley on September 3rd, 2009 11:14 pm

      Hey there CinnamonQuill!–Good to see you again! Thank you … I took a lot of photos of my friend’s sunflower field and even a tub of them that she gave me, but I liked that photo the best.


  4. Nance on September 3rd, 2009 5:47 pm

    Love the flamingos. I’ve had a thing for those from way back. My classroom is full of them.

    • Shirley on September 3rd, 2009 11:19 pm

      Nance–I had no idea you were a flamingo fan. I was so excited when I saw them in the wild in both Aruba and Bonaire. The first time in Bonaire we saw them from a distance, but in Aruba they were only about 5 feet away (if that) and I got some wonderful photos. At the zoo, I managed to position my camera over an opening in the chain link fence so I coud get an unobstructed shot. :-)


  5. Lauren on September 3rd, 2009 7:07 pm

    Gorgeous photos! I especially love the one of the sunflowers, its beautiful!

    • Shirley on September 3rd, 2009 11:20 pm

      Thanks so much, Lauren! It’s really hard to resist sunflowers, isn’t it? They can brighten any day, I think. :-)


  6. KRISTEN'S RAW on September 4th, 2009 12:59 am

    Awesome pictures :)

    • Shirley on September 7th, 2009 11:11 pm

      Hi, Kristen–Thanks so very much for your lovely comment and for taking the time to stop by. :-) Love your current giveaway and your entry rules—very cool!


  7. Kim, The Food Allergy Coach on September 4th, 2009 8:10 am

    Incredible pictures! I wanted to stop by and say thank you for all the kind comments you left for me this week. You provided some much-needed encouragement! I hope you have a restful, relaxing, and fun trip!

    • Shirley on September 7th, 2009 11:22 pm

      Hey, Kim–Back from our trip and trying to catch up! Thanks so much for your feedback. Visiting your site and reading all your posts and seeing what fabulous stuff you’ve been up to was my pleasure! Now I need to go comment on your Go Ahead Honey Chill Out roundup. I read it and absolutely loved it, but did not get to comment before heading off for the weekend. BTW, our trip was all the things you wished me … restful, relaxing, and fun! :-) Hope yours was the same!


  8. noble pig on September 4th, 2009 10:11 am

    I loved all the pics, especially the birds and the feast!

    • Shirley on September 7th, 2009 11:25 pm

      Hi, Cathy–Thanks so much! I remember that you always enjoy the bird pics and who can resist a feast? That was just the first wave of members in the second photo. Two different feasts BTW. Every meeting we have a feast! :-)


  9. Alisa - Frugal Foodie on September 4th, 2009 11:58 am

    Beautiful pictures Shirley! Have a fantastic time on what sounds to be yet another wonderful trip!

    • Shirley on September 7th, 2009 11:40 pm

      Alisa–Hi there and thanks! It was a wonderful trip and we had a great time. It feels like we were gone for a very long time, even though we just left Thursday after work. Funny how that works sometimes. :-) Playing catch up now …


  10. christina on September 9th, 2009 1:21 pm

    Thank you, Shirley! I just sent you an email with my address.

    • Shirley on September 9th, 2009 10:02 pm

      Hi there, christina!–I’m so very happy for you! :-) You’re welcome, but special thanks go to Ali and Tom for sponsoring this giveaway of their awesome book. I know you will enjoy it! :-)

      Thanks for participating in gfe‘s first giveaway!

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