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Posted in Food

Sugar Free, Flourless Cheesecake Brownies

 

I was a little sceptical about these at first, but after trying them I was instantly addicted.  When I had my husband try them is only comment was “That’s sexy”, and this coming from someone who doesn’t care for chocolate.  Needless to say, this is getting a spot at the front of my goodies recipe list. Find the original recipe HERE.

INGREDIENTS

Brownie:

  • 4 Eggs
  • 1/4 cup melted butter
  • 1/2 cup sour cream
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 20 drops (or 1 dropper full) Sweetleaf Chocolate Stevia
  • 1/4 cup Pyure Organic granulated sweetener
  • 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
  • Pinch of real salt

Cheesecake Topping:

  • 8 oz softened cream cheese
  • 1 Large Egg
  • 1 TBS Pyure Organic granulated sweetener
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

DIRECTIONS

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Grease an 8×8 pan.
  • Whisk together eggs, melted butter and sour cream.  Add vanilla, sweeteners, baking powder and salt.  Mix until totally combined.
  • In a separate bowl, mix together cheesecake ingredients until smooth.
  • Pour brownie batter into 8×8 greased pan.
  • Gently pour cheesecake batter as evenly as possible over the top of the brownie mix. (Cheesecake will sink some, that’s okay.)
  • With a toothpick or knife swirl the cheesecake throughout the brownie mix.
  • Bake for 30-35 minutes.
  • Allow to cool completely before slicing.
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Posted in Life Style

What I keep in Stock

One of the main questions I get asked about my diet and lifestyle is what I keep in my kitchen/pantry.  I figured it was about time I create a post where I list all the items for easy referencing.  I will be updating as we try new things/discover new wholesome products.

PROTEINS:
Ground Beef
Cuts of chicken
Organic eggs
Lunch meat (sugar free)
Beef cuts
Cheese (without dye)
Beans
Raw nuts (almonds, cashews, pecans)

VEGGIES:
Carrots
Peas
Green beans
Romain lettuce
Onions
Garlic
Broccoli
Califour
Sweet potatoes
Oranic red potatoes (occasionally)
Seasonal

FRUIT:
Bananas
Apples
Seasonal
Frozen fruit of choice

BEVERAGES:
Coconut milk
Canned coconut cream/milk
Half & half
Coffee (beans)
Tea (dry)

FLOURS:
Coconut
Almond
Quinoa
Rice
Arrowroot powder

BAKING:
Baking soda
Baking powder

SWEETENERS:
Sweet Leaf liquid Stevia
Erythritol
Xylitol
Pyre Sweetener blend

OTHER:
All the spices (read labels!)
Tomato paste and sauce
Diced tomatoes

GLUTEN-FREE:
Blue corn chips
Rice
Quinoa
Oatmeal

SPECIALTY:
Applegate chicken sausage
Sugar free turkey bacon
Sweetpotato tortillas
Applegate hotdogs
Applegate Chicken strips and nuggets
Gluten free lasagna
Zevias (Stevia sweetened, zero calorie soda)
Lilly’s chocolate chips
SkinnyMe chocolates

Posted in Food

Coconut Flour Blueberry Muffins ( + Chocolate Version)

This recipe is so good!  The best one I have tried so far.  The original recipe was for blueberry muffins, but the base works well for other flavors.  I forgot I had this recipe until the other day when I was craving Costco muffins.  They might not be as big, but the definitely satisfied my want for a good blueberry and chocolate, chocolate chip muffins.  Also, I think the blueberry version would be really good with a streusel topping.

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Blueberry Muffins

Ingredients

  • 8oz cream cheese, softened at room temperature
  • 3/4 cup butter, softened at room temperature
  • 8 eggs, room temperature
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 cup Xylitol or Erythritol (or 2 TBS Pyure Stevia and Erythritol blend)
  • 20 drops English Toffee Stevia
  • 1 cup coconut flour
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1-1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries

For half chocolate

  • 2 TBS unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 20 drops chocolate stevia*
  • 1-1 1/2 cup dark chocolate chips (I like Lilly’s)

*(Can sweeten to taste with a granulated sweetener)

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350
  2. Cream together cream cheese and butter, add sweeteners and vanilla. Slowly beat in eggs one at a time.
  3. In a separate bowl whisk together coconut flour and baking soda.
  4. Combine the wet and dry until everything is incorporated
  5. Add blueberries, or, divide the batter in half.
  6. Add blueberries to one half and the cocoa powder, extra sweetener and chocolate chips to the other half.
  7. Bake in a medium muffin tin (well greased or with paper liners) for 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  8. ENJOY!

Store in the refrigerator or freeze.

Posted in Blog

The Toy Box Purge

​Took advantage of daughter’s nap time a few days ago and purged her toy box. I collected a bunch of things that should have been thrown away, items “stolen” from the kitchen or bathroom and extra stuffed animals.  The interesting thing about this box full of toys bound for the donation bin is, they are all mine.

I’m a sentimental pack rat. When I was packing up all my belongings in preparation for moving after I got married I kept every toy that I still liked. (Yes, 22 years old and I still had toys I liked.) My thought was “Oh, my kids can play with these someday”, little did I know just how many toys my first child would collect within the first two years of her life.

I tend to hang on to every little thing that meant something to me.  Most of these animals were stocking stuffers or gifts in my Easter basket. I enjoyed them all as a child. I loved them as a child. They were my favorites as a child. I’m not a child anymore and my child has plenty of toys and stuffed animals. It’s time to let another child enjoy these. Letting go of things from our past can be hard, especially when they were once precious to us, but if we don’t want to be ruled by stuff we own there comes a time when we have to let them go.

I’ve been reading Maria Kondo’s boom The life-changing magic of tidying up”, and though I don’t believe the objects we own have feelings, their is one practice she has in her book that I have found useful, and that is thanking a possession before you let it go. Like I said, I don’t believe things like toys, clothing and books have feelings, but thanking something for once bringing me joy before saying goodbye has helped me let go of stuff I was only keeping for loose sentimental reasons. Something about saying it out loud helped me not feel guilty for getting rid of it (and rejecting thoughts of, “but so-in-so gave me that”, “it would be a waste” etc.).

Most of the time my daughter’s play area does not look this nice.  I get to it maybe a couple times a month and really tidy it up.  Out of all the messes is my life, my child’s toys scattered around or mixed up doesn’t bother me, it actually makes me smile.  We do live in our house with an active two year old, toys all over the place is just evidence to life being lived.

What are some of your mommy purge stories?

Posted in Food

Almond Meal & Flaxseed Loaf

Another Pinterest find and grain free loaf experiment number 2. This one so far is my favorite. I baked it longer than the original recipe said to give it a nice crust and it was perfectly crunchy. I also added about 1 TBS worth of raw honey, just because I like the flavor and touch of sweetness it adds. Another change I made was excluding the whole flaxseeds, just because I don’t care for seeds in my bread.

For the orginal recipe head over to keyingredient.com or click HERE.

Here is the recipe with my personal alterations.

Almond Meal and Flaxseed Loaf

  • Servings: 1 loaf
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

Ingredients

  • 2 cups almond meal
  • 1/3 & 1 TBS flaxseed meal
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup tapioca starch or arrowroot powder
  • 6 TBS meltes butter
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
  • 1 TBS honey
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek yogurt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F
  2. Line or grease medium sized loaf pan
  3. Mix dry ingredients until well combined
  4. Blend wet ingredients until well combined
  5. Add 1/3 of dry to wet and mix well. Continue until all the wet and dry and well combined
  6. Pour mixture into loaf pan, smooth out to make sure it is distributed evenly
  7. Bake for 35-40 minutes until golden brown and a tester comes out clean

Posted in Blog

Living My Dream

 

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“What do you want to be when you grow up?”

Every child is asked this probably about a billion times.  If someone else isn’t asking them, they are asking themselves.  I spent a lot of time thinking about this topic as a child, mostly coming up with answers for the many adults who asked me.  First it was a nurse like my mom, but I decided I hated needles too much for that.  Then (of course) it was a ballerina, but I didn’t like the costumes.  (There was also the “secret agent” stage where I desperately wanted to learn martial arts, travel the world and kick bad guy butts. 😛 )  Next a musician, but musical theory was like taking math and math and I were not on good terms.  For a while I thought about being a singer, but voice lessons were not really an option financially.  Then I discovered writing, but that’s not the dream I am talking about.

Even through all the indecision of childhood reasoning and dreaming, I always knew what I wanted to be when I grew up.  It was the only thing that made sense to me when I thought about my future.  The only thing I could see myself doing.  The only dream that made me smile and feel excitement, but it seem like a suitable answer when adults other than my parents asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up.  It was as if they didn’t see it as a real dream/job to have and I didn’t understand why.  What did I want to be?  A wife and a mom.

Yes, that was what I wanted to be when I grew up, a wife and a mom.  From a very early age I just knew that’s what God wanted me to do.  My baby dolls were precious to me, and I would swaddle them and hold them like they were real, to the extent I usually didn’t let other people hold them. They were my babies and I was their mommy.  All my Barbies and stuffed animals had a family with a mommy, a daddy and children (or more accurately, a mommy, a daddy, a teenager, a little sibling and a baby.)  I made families out of everything, from buttons to the different sized rods we used for math. (You home-schoolers know what I am talking about.)  I loved it, but whenever I gave my honest answer to the “what do you want to be when you grow up” question, nobody seemed to take me seriously.

When God also called me to be a writer, one of the things that made me excited about it was that I could do it and still be a stay at home wife and mom.  I could still home-school and be a writer.  I didn’t have to go to school or get a degree, I didn’t have to commute to a job, I could be at home.  I didn’t realize how much I loved being at home until I got my first true away-from-home job (babysitting/nannying didn’t count).  Like any young adult I wanted to get out of the house and away from my family (nothing against my family, they are awesome and I love them).  We’ve all been there, when we think it’s time for us to spread our own wings and leave the nest.  I worked four days a week and for a while it was nice not being home, but it didn’t take long for me to miss it.  I missed having time to play in the kitchen, I had to actually catch up on what was going on instead of being a witness (that felt weird).  It made me feel out of touch with home and my family even though I still lived there.  I wanted to be home again.

When I graduated High School I was bombarded with questions about college, degrees and careers.  It drove me crazy.  I didn’t want to go to college, I didn’t feel God leading me toward college or a degree, but that just wasn’t the norm.  I took a couple of classes just because it’s what I was “supposed to do”, but boy, was I one happy girl when I walked off that campus for the last time.  After that, when I was asked if I was going to school and I answered no, I’d get looks that to me said, “That’s strange”, “Is she just not smart?” “Poor lost soul”, even from church members.  It was sad and a bit discouraging.  I was just trying to follow where I thought God was leading me.  I didn’t need a degree to be a writer, a wife and a mom, but I was the only young woman I knew who wasn’t going to school and pursuing a career.

Now however, all those odd looks, wondering and seeking, all those voices whispering and telling me to just go with the status quo are all things of the past.  They are silent and gone, not because people have changed their view, but because I chose to stop hearing and seeing them.  I may not have a degree, but I am studying to be a Godly wife and mom.  Staying home may look boring on the outside, but I have time to pursue my interests, whether they be cooking, reading or writing.  I love being here when my husband walks through the door.  I may not be the most amazing house keeper, but I love organizing my house and the satisfaction of looking around a room I just finished cleaning.  Now I have a daughter who loves reading stories, singing songs and is growing into mommy’s little helper.  She is busy and most days may wear me out, but she is such a joy with her giggles and kisses.

It may not be what this world views as the norm, but this is my dream and I am living it.  To you young woman who is seeking God’s will for your life and may be going through that same stage in life, don’t for a minute think that being a wife and a mom isn’t a dream worth having, or a career worth pursuing.  It is.  The path that God has planned for you is more worth while, more fulfilling and better than anything this world has to offer.  So tune out the controversy, set your sights on Him and keep dreaming.

~Reblogged and revised from a post I wrote in 2015~