God has amazingly blessed me, Dina-Marie! I am the mother of 10 wonderful children ranging in ages from 5 yrs.- 28 yrs. I am also the grandmother of 8 – 4 granddaughters and 3 grandson (the 8th has not yet made his appearance) – 2 of the grandchildren are older than our youngest!

The Journey Begins

I began home-educating when our oldest was pre-kindergarten and have continued ever since. My husband, John, worked as a chemist for over 20 years, during most of which time, we lived near Mobile, AL.  We were fortunate enough to have enjoyed a 4 year transfer (aka vacation) to Europe because of John’s job.

Lifestyle Change – Corporate to Grape Farming!

In 2008 we have made a major life change – moving from Alabama to the high plains of  Texas to start Oswald Vineyard. We planted 5 acres of grape vines in the Spring of 2008 and have continued expansion to 22 1/3 acres. Another 5 acres will be planted in 2013 bringing the grand total to 27 1/3 acres of grapes! We grow a French white variety, Roussanne, two Italian reds, Montepulciano and Aglianico, as well as, Petit Verdo and Muscato Giallo.

Leaving the “secure” corporate world to begin a vineyard has been challenging to say the least! Funded by all our savings, cashing in our retirement fund, good hard work and even a paper route to make ends meet, the rewards have been endless. Working together as a family has built a good work ethic, as well as, great family relationships.

Cultured  [kuhl-cherd]

1. having or showing good education, tastes, and manner
2. artificially nurtured or grown: “cultured bacteria”

Highlight definition #2!

In 2011, I was introduced to the GAPS diet as sort of a last ditch effort to combat rheumatoid arthritis. Surprisingly,  not only did my pain cease within a couple of weeks of beginning the diet, I was also able to begin eating meats after 30+ years as a vegetarian due to severe stomach issues.

The GAPS diet focuses on replacing the harmful, toxin producing bacteria in your gut with the CULTURED or probiotic bacteria that is beneficial to your gut! This CULTURED bacteria is often in the form of fermented foods or foods that have been inoculated with beneficial bacteria that is nurtured and grown like yogurt, kefir and sourdough breads!

The GAPS diet was my introduction into traditional food preparation which continues to dictate my philosophy in cooking. After doing GAPS as a family, everyone has transitioned to a traditional diet.

What to Expect From Cultured Palate

1. Healthy “Real” Food Recipes

I know the challenges a new way of eating can bring and I want to help you with nutritious yet economical meals to nourish your family. My recipes will be “real” food dishes without processed foods containing unnecessary (and many times harmful) ingredients. The only exception to this is the Holiday Cookie recipes which are sentimental family favorites and even these, I have attempted to make as healthy a version as possible.

2. Simple Lifestyle

I love sharing our family life – this includes everything from what’s going on in the vineyard, our farm animals (family milk cow, chickens and dogs) to building out own home overlooking the vineyard from Insulated Concrete Forms and lots of stuff in between!

Thank you for joining me and allowing me to share our life with you!

Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments at: