Monday, April 22, 2013

2 Miles! {Lundi Little Lovelies}

Woohoo!  I guess you can figure out what one of my little lovelies is this week!

Yep!  I just got back from my first 2 mile run a little bit ago!  And man, it felt awesome!  I went slow and steady for the first 1.5 miles and then basically ran all out for the last half mile.  I loved it!  And, I feel so accomplished!  Woot woot!

I also have an AMAZING cookie recipe to share with you!  Seriously, I'm eating one right now, and I'm taking the smallest bites possible in order to make it last.  They are sooooooo good!  But, I am so stinkin busy for the next few weeks!  I haven't even done the dishes from the 2.5 meals that got cooked tonight.  And that was after I got home from being at work for about 11 hours.  AND there's plenty more of those days coming up...

So, I will get to the cookies as soon as I possibly can!  I miss telling you my yummy recipe sagas.  But, there are only 4 weeks of school left, and then I'll have plenty of time to bug you to bake something this summer!

Bon lundi!  (Happy Monday!)

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Well Hello There!

It's been a while hasn't it?!  Well, there is a reason for that!

I've been in Jamaica!!!

Yep, this weekend, my brother got married at a Jamaican resort, so we took a long weekend vacation at an all-inclusive Couples resort in Jamaica!!!  Woohoo!

A Jamaican sunset watched while cuddling in a porch swing!

We had a BLAST!  I just love the "all-inclusive" part!  So, Thomas and I took a break from our calorie counting and chowed down all weekend!  They had some AMAZING food!  Yum!  Seriously, like I literally ate 5 pastries (plus some other delicious food) for breakfast every morning!  Amazing seafood dinners!  Multiple desserts each night!!!  It was AWESOME!!!

Thomas and I right before the beach wedding!

So, last week was a little busy getting ready to go, and we've been pooped since we got back!  And now I'm so incredibly behind at work that I'm freaking out a little bit.  But, we are back to chaotic life as we know it, and boy did we jump right back in!

We got back in town Sunday night but had taken off work on Monday too so that we would have some time to recuperate.  And I am so glad we did!  This week, we've basically got something going every night!  And let me tell ya, nothing makes you more tired and overwhelmed than coming back to work from vacation to realize everything is on the verge of spinning out of control!  Yikes!

But to focus on the good things, I did work out while we were in Jamaica, so that made me feel a teensy bit better about myself while I was stuffing my face all weekend.  Also, I finally bought some cinnamon chips!  I cannot wait to try them!!!  In fact, I may have to get a little less work done tonight and bake something with them!  Oh, yum!

I hope you're having a good week wherever you are!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Date Night {Lundi Little Lovelies}

Whew!  I have been busy!  We've got a lot happening around our house.  So, I haven't baked a lot lately because we're still trying to eat on the enormous stash of things in the freezer.  We're almost done though, so you can expect some yummy breakfast recipes soon.

I do have an amazing Reese's Cookie Dough Dip to share with you.  But, I can't share it right now because I would have to get it out of the fridge to take pictures.  And I can't do that because I would continue eating it...  So, maybe tomorrow I'll be good enough to snap some photos to share!

Two little lovelies this week:
  1. I am now up to 1.5 mile runs for sure!!!  Tonight was my third since Wednesday, and though they are painful, it feels like such an accomplishment!  So, I'm pretty excited about that!
  2. Thomas is taking me to The Melting Pot for the first time on Wednesday!!!  I'm so excited!  I've wanted to go to there for a while now, but we've just never been.  So, it's a date!  Yay!
 We've still got a busy week ahead, but hopefully I'll take a few photos before I can finish that dip tomorrow!

Have a wonderful week!

Friday, April 5, 2013

Homemade Granola

This is it.  This is all that's left of my lovely batch of granola from last week.

I have been eating this everyday for breakfast, and sometimes as a snack too, since I made it last week.  YUM!

In the whole process of trying to be healthier, I have been running pretty consistently and really watching the balance of food that I eat.  So, I've been working on lowering my fat intake and raising my protein intake.  And though this granola doesn't really have much protein in it, I've been eating it mixed into fat free (very high protein) yogurt with some fruit (I've had strawberries and apples on hand lately).  O. MY.  I could eat these yogurt parfaits for the rest of my life!  Sometimes it's all I can do to keep from eating two a day!  They are soooo good!  And I have discovered Publix's fat free vanilla yogurt, and it is to die for!  Delish!

Long story short:  I LOVE GRANOLA!!!

But who wants to pay $4 a box for a teensy little bit of it?!   Not me!  So, I've tried out a couple of different recipes, but I find a common factor.  Granola is pretty high calorie.  I mean, it's all carbs, so it makes sense.  But it can also have a lot of fat, so I try to look for variations that won't have much oil or sugar in them to keep the fat content down.  And on Pinterest (of course), I stumbled across this one!


Granola {without oil}
Very slightly adapted from Cooking Classy
Makes about 4 cups

  • 2 cups old-fashioned oats
  • 1/2 cup sliced almonds
  • 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 tablespoon water
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 pinch nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup dried berries (raisins, craisins, etc.)
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.  Line a metal 9x13 baking dish with parchment paper.
  2. In a mixing bowl, toss oats and almonds together.  Set aside.
  3. In a small saucepan, combine brown sugar, honey, water, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt.  Bring mixture to a boil, stirring frequently.  Once boiling, continue for one minute, stirring constantly.
  4. Remove from heat and add vanilla and baking soda.  Whisk until foamy, just a few seconds.
  5. Pour the hot mixture over the oat mixture and stir to coat evenly.
  6. Spread the mixture evenly into the prepared baking dish.
  7. Bake at 300 degrees for 35-40 minutes, removing every 15 minutes to stir the mixture around so that it cooks evenly.
  8. Remove from oven, mix in dried fruit (I used half raisins and half Craisins.  Yum!).
  9. Allow mixture to cool before storing in an airtight container.
So, if you are still buying granola cereal at the store, STOP!  It is so easy to make yourself, and you can control the ingredients and amount of fat!  And it's a million times cheaper!

So now, I'm trying to convince myself that I do not need to walk into the kitchen and eat that bowl of granola!  Hehe!

But, I'm off to get my hair cut for my brother's wedding which is coming up soon!  And tomorrow, the beach to work on my tan!  Happy wonderful Friday night!!!!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

"Yahweh-yireh" The Lord Will Provide

I think one of the biggest problems with finding contentment is asking God for something, receiving it in a way you didn't expect, and totally missing it.  Ya know?

I have been praying for a while for God to just show me that He is in control and that He is not absent from our lives.  And then, God showed up.  But it wasn't how I wanted Him to show up.  So, I wrote it off at first, and just kept praying.

And then it hit me like a ton of bricks.  The Lord provided.  Sure, if it was me in charge, He would have provided in a completely different way.  But, really, how often does the Creator of the Universe move around my preferences?!  I know He cares for me and loves me more than I can imagine, but that does not mean He is ever going to do anything my way.

So, this all hit me with the phrase "the Lord will provide".  And I just knew that was a phrase from the Bible.  Now, if you don't know me, I'm big into languages.  Like, huge.  So, I was pretty sure it was a name of something in the Bible, and I was fairly confident that I could find it in the ancient Hebrew in one of my commentaries or concordances.  And I was right!

Genesis 22 tells the story of Abraham taking his son, Isaac, up a mountain to be sacrificed to the Lord.  The Lord told Abraham to sacrifice his only son whom he loved.  The Lord was testing Abraham to see if he would be obedient even to the point of his own heartache.  God wanted to know that Abraham trusted Him.  So, Abraham was obedient.  But, at the last moment before Abraham was to kill Isaac, the Lord stopped Him.  God didn't really want Isaac as a sacrifice, he wanted Abraham's devotion, trust, and obedience.  So, the Lord provided a ram not far off to be the sacrifice instead.  So Abraham named that place "The Lord Will Provide" or "Yahweh-yireh" in the Hebrew (Genesis 22:14).

So, even though God does not move in ways that I would always prefer, in my life today, I can say and remember "Yahweh-yireh"!