2 Movies in One Weekend, Great Food, and Finally a Good Night’s Sleep!


It’s been a pretty rainy weekend, which meant spending a significant amount of time in the kitchen!  The weather has also turned (hello, 30 degree difference in less than 24 hrs), so it’s finally fall – and that means warm and comforting food.

One of the recipes I threw together was in an effort to use up the last of my cut up butternut squash before it went bad.  I love green bean casserole, so I wanted to do something similar, but with squash.  This is what I came out with, and I have to say I loved it!  I probably could have pre-cooked the squash a bit more though, so keep that in mind if you make it.

Crissie’s Creamy Winter
Squash Bake

This recipe would handle most leftover
vegetables well.  It’s gluten-light the
way I made it, but could easily be gluten-free if omitting the breadcrumbs.


*1 clove garlic — minced

*1/2 medium onion — finely chopped

*1 can green beans

*1 small package of Brussel sprouts – steamed

*3-4 cup butternut squash peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes

*3 tbsp Earth’s balance soy-free vegan margarine

*3 tbsp flour (I used a gluten-free blend, but any flour will work)

*1.5 cup coconut milk

*1 tsp lemon juice

*1/2 tsp thyme

*1/2 tsp oregano

*1 cup elbow macaroni (cooked.  I used Quinoa noodles to keep gluten-free)

*Nutritional Yeast to Taste

*Bread Crumbs

*Salt and pepper to taste


1. Lightly spray a casserole dish.

2. Sauté onions and garlic over medium heat for 5 minutes, or until
soft.  Add squash, cover, and cook for 10

3. Add green beans, squash mixture, and cooked pasta into the
casserole dish.

4. Make a white sauce.  Melt the
margarine over medium-high heat.  Add
flour and mix until very well combined.
Slowly add coconut milk, stirring constantly to eliminate any
clumps.  Continue to cook until mixture
thickens.  Add thyme, oregano, salt, and

5. Pour white sauce over vegetables and pasta, and mix well.

6. Sprinkle the top with nutritional yeast and bread crumbs.

7. Bake for 25 minutes at 350 degrees.

I really liked this, and it made plenty of leftovers for the week.

Last night, dinner was with a couple girlfriends before going to a movie.  We went out for Thai (always a favorite), and I actually DIDN’T get tofu green curry!  I got the sweet and sour tofu.  While it was very good – it wasn’t as good as my green curry is.

This morning I woke up early after a very good night’s sleep (that was highly overdue).  I decided to make a few batches of homemade gluten-free doughnuts from my new Allergy-Free Desserts cookbook.  I made the actual doughnuts baked in my groovy pans, but also used a good portion of the dough (I made a double batch) to make some fried doughnut holes.  I will admit – I did that in an attempt to get my husband to eat them.  I never fry anything.  I think frying food is disgusting and messy and incredibly unhealthy.  However – I do know that D is struggling with this gluten-free thing, and gets ridiculously tired of healthy food.  I thought I’d compromise a bit with the doughnut holes.

I left some of the doughnuts plain, dipped some in powdered sugar, and some in cinnamon.  I think they came out great – though a bit dense.  The kids loved them.  D didn’t.  I wonder if I told him that I bought them at Krispy Creme would change his mind!?  🙂

This evening is a planned lentil-sloppy joe dinner with cole slaw, but that may change if we do end up at Busch Garden’s this afternoon.

I also made fresh juice today for the first time in a few weeks.  I love juice, and am going to use the leftover pulp to make some raw crackers.

juice ingredients


Friday night D and I actually went out to the movies.  It’s been months since I’ve seen something at a theater, and so we were really excited.  We picked Drive since it was rated 8.8/10 and looked from the previews looked like a fun action movie.  I won’t go into too many details, but neither of us liked it.  It was awkward with little action – except the violence scenes which were over-the-top and excessive.  Oh well.

Our original plan was to go to Busch Gardens on Saturday evening.   Unfortunately, it rained ALL day, so that killed those plans.

I woke up at 7, and headed to the lab to get my blood drawn at 8 when they opened.  Nothing bad, just typical yearly physical stuff.  The place was a zoo, so it was after 9 by the time I got out of there.

I met up with D and R at the pool for a bit, then we all went back home.  D took R to her gymnastics while I stayed home and puttered about the kitchen making a bunch of different things.

Late in the afternoon, AC planned a girls night for dinner and a movie.  She really wanted to see the latest Sarah Jessica Parker flick.  I decided I was a really good friend because I went…to a chick flick…with a rating of 3.7/10 on IMDB.  I started trying to figure out how to smuggle wine into the theater.

Pleasantly enough – the movie was cute.  I’d give it a solid 6/10.  AC, L, and I had a nice time.  It’s been quite a while since we’ve gotten together, so despite the rain killing my original plans, the evening turned out nicely anyway!

Today the plan is to go up to Busch Garden’s around 2.  The rain has stopped, and while it’s still chilly (70 degrees), it’ll be great jeans and sweater weather to roam around the park for the last normal day of the season.  Next weekend Howl-O-Scream opens (my very favorite time of year – the entire theme park gets haunted for a month), so today is our last chance for many of the rides.

I can’t express how much I needed this weekend.  It’s been a very busy and chaotic couple of weeks, and this coming week at work will likely be much of the same…but just having a couple of days to feel normal again has been great.  Hopefully this peaceful feeling will carry forward with me in the week to come!

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I am a 45 yo busy career single mom and doctoral student attempting to find her inner athlete, be a gluten-free(ish) vegan, and find a way to balance it all without going crazy! I love to cook, read, run, box, do yoga, dance, travel, and learn as many new things as I can - which often gets me in trouble.... I am passionate about life in general, and if I didn't write about it, I'd probably implode.

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