Monthly Archives: January 2016

No Bake Raw Brownies: So Yum…and healthy!

IMG_3977If you haven’t tried raw brownies yet, you have to. They are the easiest and yummiest healthy brownies you can make. I’ve made my fare share of “healthy” brownies and these are by far my favorite. Yet this time, on a whim, I decided to throw in a tad of unsweetened coconut and I don’t think I can go back to making them without. Delish!

Here’s the recipe:


  • 2 cups  raw walnuts
  • 11 madjool dates, pitted
  • 1/3 cup (60 g) cacao powder or unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened shredded coconut (optional)
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 tsp sea salt
  • 2 tsp water


1. Place walnuts  in food processor and process until finely ground.

2. Add the dates and sea salt and pulse to combine.

3. Add the vanilla, cacao powder and coconut to the food processor and process until small bits remain.

5. Process until a dough consistency is achieved, adding the water and/or more dates if the mixture does not hold together when squeezed in your hand. Y

6. Add the brownie mixture to a parchment lined loaf pan. Press down with hands until it is flat and firm.

7. Place in freezer or fridge to chill for 10-15 minutes before cutting into 10 even squares.

Pajama and Pancake Birthday Party

IMG_3979It’s been a few weeks since my daughter had her birthday, but shortly after we dashed off to Hawaii (can’t complain!!!) and now we are back to the daily grind of life. I’ve been anxious to post about Vivienne’s birthday party. I thought it turned out so cute, but I must apologize for some of my pictures. I am by no means a professional photographer nor do we feel it necessary to hire one for a kids party. Every thing we do, we do it ourselves…except for the cake. I’ve learned my DIY limits and cake decorating is not my thing 😉

After a year long conversation of Viv telling me she wanted a pirate party, a few weeks before I needed to send out the invites, she threw me a curve ball and said she wanted a slumber party? “A wha, wha?!!” I said. Me not being ready to host a sleep over with a bunch of six and seven year olds, seeing disaster in the making, years off my life and no sleep, I gently suggested a pajama party instead with breakfast for dinner (who doesn’t love that?!). She was sold! Amen to that! So I had a few weeks to rethink party ideas and come up with a game plan and here you will see the results with corals, peaches and golds as the main theme.


IMG_3810To keep with the ombre theme of the invitation, I had our local store do an ombre cake which I thought they did a fantastic job and much better than I could have ever attempted. Then I topped it with some sticker flags and gold washi tape I whipped up along with a #7 sparkler candle.



IMG_3777To set the scene and create an intimate, cozy atmosphere, I used a low table covered with white kraft paper and gold sparkle stickers. The kids sat on pillows and ate pancakes, fruit and yogurt parfaits…talk about sugar overload!! On either sides of the table, I had a teepee with faux sheep skin (#ikea) rugs and pillows inside. I already had one teepee I had made years ago, but I wanted one more without the effort of cutting and sewing. So with a little Google help, I saw some no-sew ideas and came up with my own take. Talk about easy!! Just using some 6′ wood dowels, a painters drop cloth and a few pushpins and you are good to go!! I also topped the teepees with some tissue garland and what I call “fairy lights” I had picked up a while ago from the #target dollar bin. That place can be a gold mine if you check regularly. Finally, we have a glass panel wall that I used to hang some gold and peach pin wheels as a back drop. Super cute!! 
IMG_3819For activities we had a donut from a string eating contest (that was a big hit!!) and then the kiddos decorated their own pillow cases with fabric markers. It kept them busy for quite a while and it was fun to see what they came up with.



Finally, for the favors, I found these sparkly gold bags from (again) the Target dollar bin that I dolled up with some Thank You tags and filled them each with a peach colored bracelet, some donut shaped soap from Etsy, and these glass magnets I made that coordinated with the invitation. Over all I think all the kiddos had fun and who doesn’t like hanging out in your jammies?! To take one for the team, I even wore mine and I have to say, it’s the most comfortable I’ve ever been at a party 😉

*Most of the party supplies were from Shop Sweet Lulu and Target

**If you have any questions about how I created or styled some of the party items, I am happy to answer!

Protein Packed Sunflower Butter Muffins…Yum!

IMG_3737Well hello again! I disappeared there for a bit over the Christmas break. I posted a few inspirations on Instagram, but I was otherwise engaged with hanging with the family folk for the last few weeks. I have to say, it was nice to slow down, not rush out the door and just hang in our jammies if we so chose. Not to give an entirely wrong impression that we did nothing but hang out in our pjs slothing about. We did venture out of our hollow up to visit the snow, downtown to see the gingerbread houses and then a dismal attempt at driving around to find Christmas lights and ending up in a gas station bathroom (ewe!!).

Now that the merriment of the holidays are behind us, we’ve stretched our pants to capacity and dawned our nightwear sufficiently during the day hours, it’s time to get back on track. Exercise, stick to a schedule and eat healthy…but still eat yummy food of course!! The Christmas cookies are in the past and I am inspired to start thinking of some healthier options for my little peeps that they will actually eat. So I went to my “High Protein Vegetarian” cookbook and found these bad boys that I hadn’t tried before. Partly because my oldest daughter only likes almond butter and my youngest only likes peanut butter…hmph 🙁 But a lightbulb went off last night and I thought of the all forgotten sunflower butter that I think is oh-so-delicisious, but hardly used. So with a few minor substitutions, I whipped these up last night while the girls were in bed. And the best part? they tried them for breakfast and they liked them! Yay! And I have to say I do too. Super yum with all sorts of healthy goodness in there to make a mom’s conscience rest easy.

Here is the recipe that was adapted from Veggie and the Beast:

Sunflower Butter and Chocolate Chips Protein Muffins


YIELD: 10 – 12 muffins (I only got 10)

PREP TIME: 10 minutes

COOK TIME: 15 minutes

TOTAL TIME: 25 minutes


  • ¾ cup whole grain spelt flour (or whole wheat pastry flour)
  • ½ cup quick oats
  • ¼ cup wheat germ
  • 1 teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ teaspoon baking soda
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ½ cup natural unsweetened applesauce
  • ⅔ cup creamy peanut butter
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 3 tablespoons dark brown sugar, packed
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ½ cup 2% plain Greek yogurt
  • 1/3 cup mini chocolate chips


  1. Whisk together the flour, oats, wheat germ, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon and salt in a bowl. Set aside.
  2. In another bowl, stir together the applesauce and peanut butter. Mix in the honey, sugar, egg, and vanilla, and then stir in the Greek yogurt.
  3. Slowly add the dry ingredients to the wet ingredients. Fold in the chocolates chips.
  4. Drop the batter into 12 lined and greased muffin tins.
  5. Bake at 350 for 15-18 minutes, until a toothpick/knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Allow to cool completely. Store in an airtight container. Since this is an oil-free quick bread, the muffin flavor and texture will improve overnight.