L O V E
What our Valentines looked like. Felt heart garland, heart pancakes, and tacos at Taco Shop at Underdogs with daddy for dinner. Their grilled corn and black bean salad was BOMB! Mitch had their fish tacos and Missy girl had beans, rice, and gauc.
I keep going back to this recipe for pancakes as of late. It uses coconut flour, which I am very fond of. Unlike almond flour, coconut flour feels light. Almond flour can be a bit dense. If you don’t know anything about coconut flour, it is extremely absorbant. You only use a few tablespoons for a full recipe. I’ve stopped buying almond flour and use mostly coconut and oat (soaked and dehydrated for better digestion, of course).
The recipe calls for erythritol, but I use 1 tablespoon coconut sugar instead. I didn’t have any almond milk, but I did have heavy whipping cream and whipped it for a few minutes. This made the pancakes super light and fluffy. I will try coconut cream next. I also add some granola and chopped walnuts for some crunch into the batter.
Get the recipe here from All Day I Dream About Food.
San Francisco January
I really like not having any snow during winter. Even though we haven’t had any snow, we have definitely had freezing temperatures. We are sleeping with at least 3 layers of clothing on, and a beanie. Our apartment has no insulation so it feels like living in a tent. It’s actually colder inside than it is outside. That part hasn’t been a favorite of mine; however, the beauty of mother nature on this side of the world is stunning.
Walking the Golden Gate Bridge is very windy.
Looking at the Presidio, where we live. Sutro Tower in the back.
Love the forest trees peeking through above the wall.
Missy’s latest thing is, “I have no problems.” Yes, my love, you have no problems. Your life is good and you deserve the best. Never believe any less.
Raw Veggie Bread
This bread is mighty tasty. It’s been 5 weeks that I strictly have consumed zero flour and sugar. Mitch has also being doing such a great job….he’s lost 22 pounds!!! Way to go, Mitch! I am so proud of you. Even though I had opportunities to stray to the dark side of consuming the white meaningless powder, I stuck to my guns and have remained faithful. So instead of filling up on wheat to make a sandwich, I made my own…out of veggies. And boy, is it good. Give it a try and see for yourself. You won’t miss the bread.
1/2 an onion
1/4 sundried tomatoes
1-2 cloves of garlic
1/2 cup of soaked flaxseeds (cover with enough water to soak all the seeds and let sit for 10 minutes until water is absorbed and the seeds have almost doubled. It will all gel together. Soaking also removes phytic acid, making it more digestible.)
1/4 cup nutritonal yeast
1 tablespoon Bragg’s Aminos
salt and pepper to taste
1. Place garlic in food processor and let it run until completely chopped up in small bits.
2. Place all vegetables in food processor until you get a slurry.
3. Add remaining ingredients and pulse to combine.
4. Spread thickly on dehydrator sheet and let dehydrate until dry but flexible. My dehydrator works at 165 degrees and it took about 8 hours.
Also, I use this recipe to make my hummus, except I cook my own beans and don’t use any olive oil. Use as much water as you need to make it nice and smooth.
Raw Carrot Cake
Judahlicious is probably my favorite place to eat in San Francisco. Their menu is raw/vegan and absolutely delicious including their acai bowl, buckwheat waffle, and nahbo taco.
Their Dahnu wrap made out of flax seed and carrot filled with almond pate, avocado, kale, carrot, topped with cashew curry sauce. Served with a side salad with walnut cheeze.
And then there’s the carrot cake. By far the BEST carrot cake I’ve ever had. For sure. The bottom layer is chewy with nuts, dates, goji berries, coconut, and the top is the softest, fluffiest cashew frosting.
It was so life changing that I came home and made my own.
1 cup walnuts
1 cup oats/granola
1/2 cup shredded coconut
1 cup raisins
1/2 cup dates
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 teaspoon cinnamon
dash of ginger (keep peeled ginger in the freezer and grate it into recipes like this)
1 cup cashews (soak for a couple of hours)
2 tablespoons orange juice (can also use lemon instead)
1 teaspoon orange zest
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon honey (omit if making it vegan)
1/2 teaspoon turmeric (not kidding; this will help give that orange tint)
2 tablespoons coconut oil
water as needed
1. Place carrots alone in food processor, and process until it becomes little chunks.
2. Add the rest of the cake ingredients and process until everything is incorporated and you can see small chunks of the different ingredients. You want to be able to see the different chunks, don’t over process.
3. Press cake down into a cake pan.
4. Place all frosting ingredients in a high speed blender. Scrape down sides. You may have to let it run a few times to get it nice and smooth. Add water as needed to make desired consistency (most likely only a couple of tablespoons).
5. Place frosting on top of carrot cake and enjoy your beautiful creation!
If you will be serving this to guests, I suggest refrigerating it for an hour or two before taking it out to cut since it will have set up nicely.
Little Mermaid Sing-a-long
This was one of the FUNNEST things I have ever done as a mom. Little Mermaid plays on the screen in the Castro Theater, and everyone sings a long to the songs and shouts “Don’t do it, Ariel” when she’s about to encounter danger. Hearing everyone sing together was hilarious. I might have enjoyed it more than Missy did. You also get a goody bag of things relevant to the movie which included bubbles, a dinglehopper, a pearl necklace, a crown, and a little popper. Definitely at the top of the list. Can’t wait to do it again.
The Richmond Library is a 15 minute walk from our apartment. It was a beautiful sunny day, and we made our way over to watch the Lion Dancers do their thang for Chinese New Year. Missy was more excited to play on the swing in front of the library, but the dancers were really cool.
I did a health challenge with some friends over an 8 week period (Nov 4-Dec 29). It wasn’t much of a challenge for me because I was already eating within the guidelines; which were: eat 5 servings of vegetables daily, eat 4 servings of fruit daily, exercise for 30 minutes 5 days a week, drink 64 ounces of water daily, no eating after 9pm, and 1 or less sweet per day with one free day. I did pretty well and only lost a couple of points a few times.
I was happy to see I lost a few pounds and a couple inches over the course of the challenge. It was nice to see my habits written down in order to see my progress. Getting 30 minutes of exercise 5 times a week really felt good. I did like the no eating after 9pm rule, and actually found that 7 or 8 was better.
Although this challenge was good, I found it wasn’t the right fit for me. Here’s why.
- First of all, 9 servings of produce usually isn’t a problem for me because my meals are made up of mostly produce anyway. But sometimes I felt like having a warm bowl of oatmeal, or some chili full of beans and that could throw my servings off. So to make sure I got all my produce servings in, I would eat more than I normally would have because 1 or 2 servings had been replaced with grains or beans or something else.
- 64 ounces of water is too much. Especially when the majority of your diet is produce. Produce is mostly water anyway! You definitely don’t ever want to be thirsty but, you also don’t want to dilute your body’s digestive power.
- Being told I am allowed to have one sweet a day makes me feel like I should have one sweet a day. Plus one free day a week where I can have as much sugar as I want is a little too unlimited for me. I find that when I have no restrictions against sweets, I avoid them much better. I feel no obligation to consume them, neither do I feel that I am entitled to something sweet. Granted, Christmas is one of the only times where I do eat more sugar than I need to so I missed a few points for that.
Overall: I found I was eating too much on this challenge which made me bloated and sometimes constipated. I was more focused on getting all my points, rather than listening to my body. While I believe a produce-rich diet is extremely beneficial, I also believe that listening to your body is crucial. How you feel is more important than how many servings you get. I find that when I eat until I’m 3/4 of the way full, I digest my food a LOT better and I feel better overall. I believe in giving your body time to fully digest a meal before eating again.
On a related note- Mitch has decided to make some health changes and I am SO excited for him! YAY MITCH!!! I will be showing my support by following part of his diet with him: no flour or sugar. I already feel better after the first week. No headaches, no bloating, and more energy. The holidays really set me back, and it feels good to get away from the health robbing thief. I feel like I am doing better on this plan than I was on the 8 week health challenge.
What benefits have you noticed when you abstain from flour and sugar? I’d love to hear your thoughts.
Happy new year!
The gum wall.
Clearly, Missy is thrilled about being on a gold pig.
We all went back to the cabin for brunch.
Mitch took the boat out for a spin.
Missy saw her first movie theater movie! Frozen. She loved it. Some girls in the audience would cry when there was a sad part. It definitely made me feel like I was in a kid’s show. It was also my first time in the movies since having Missy, so maybe it’s just been a while for me.
C H R I S T M A S
We stayed in one of Debbie’s friend’s house while they were away because there was more room for all of us there than the little cabin where Deb and Warwick are staying. It was perfect.
Elliot is such a sweet uncle. I love seeing Missy interact others.
Don and Janice Ryther invited us to celebrate Christmas Eve together. They have this beautiful piano. While enjoying our meal we laughed, swapped stories - including our engagement story, met some new people, then sang songs together and read of the Savior’s birth from the scriptures.
Back at home, Missy opened her Christmas jammies.
We went through a huge hail storm on the way to Bellevue to watch the Snowflake Lane Parade. Our first time at the parade was when we lived there 4 years ago. By the time we got to Bellevue, the hail storm was gone. Thank goodness.
We drove to Seattle to be with Mitch’s family for Christmas. Debbie was surprised to see us come a whole day earlier! We stopped in Medford, Oregon to stay the night and continued driving the next day. Missy watched Despicable Me about 5 times. She did awesome with going to the potty. She didn’t use her little potty the whole time we were there. Such a clever girl.
Looking out on Beaver Lake where Debbie and Warwick live.