Little Finn

Little Finn | Lexie WinslowBy my count, my family has adopted 13 cats since I was born (and I’m probably forgetting a couple). We are exclusively a pet adoption family, going to a local shelter when a new space opens up in the roster. Although more often than not, unwanted pets find their way to us regardless of our desire to add to the brood. Like the time our very independent Maine Coon cat went on an extended tour of the neighborhood, prompting us to put up “Missing” posters, and when our Coon came back a week later our neighbors had gifted us with three other brown striped cats in his absence.

Each of the cats in this baker’s dozen has had a unique personality, and a slightly different relationship to all of the human members of the family, but over time a few cats have stood out from the pack. One of those stars is Finn. [Read more…]

Career vs. Day Job

Career vs Day Job | Lexie WinslowI’m always curious to note the vocabulary that people use when they talk about how they spend their time. Is your occupation a career or a day job? Is your creative outlet your hobby or your true calling? Which one is your real work? It might seem like semantics to some people, but I find it fascinating.

We’re in a new economy of slash careers, like mine: ghostwriter/website manager/content strategist/social media specialist. Likewise, in this age of instant connection and endless resources, any mild interest can become a passion. With a few clicks of the mouse you can find supplies, advice, a mentor, a community, and anything else you might need to dive into a new hobby. We’re no longer a population defined by one occupation, or an occupation and a hobby—we’re a generation of multi-hyphenates.

The sticking point about this departure from tradition is the sense of divided loyalty. [Read more…]

The Minimalist Approach to Gluten Free

The Minimalist Approach to Gluten Free | Lexie WinslowIn 2013 I found out that I felt ill all the time not because of a fluke 20-month stomach flu but in fact because I have celiac disease (aka the gluten allergy). The diagnosis was obviously a huge turning point, because after a few days of detox my symptoms went away, and within a month I felt better than I had in years.

That being said, at first there was definitely a major moment of, “Now what?” For anyone newly diagnosed as celiac or gluten intolerant, or anyone with a suspicion of the gluten allergy who wants to self-test, this is my minimalist take on going gluten free.

I opted to go with a true elimination diet, focused on cutting out the danger food and not actively adding extra food back in to fill the void. My approach is very simple: eat foods that do not naturally have gluten. As in, whole foods that have no gluten in their chemistry, and are not processed with wheat; foods that resemble their natural forms as closely as possible. In other words, I buy a lot of ingredients these days, and make wholesome, simple meals. [Read more…]