Read This NOW!!!!

You guys are the best commenters EVER!!!! Thank you for all of the time you guys spend reading my blog– it really means the world to me!!!!!!!

I’m blogging over at Lea’s Blog today. Go read about 100 things I’ve learned!  I asked a question that I want to hear all of your responses to. It has to do with my last Q&A Post.

Also, with my last Q&A’s post your responses really touched me. It really means a lot to me when you guys are there for me. I know that the SF jelly and cake sound like “silly” splurges, but for me, that in itself is a big step for me. Before, I NEVER would have ever considered even tasting the Jelly, eating a Cookie, having a bite of Cake at a friend’s Birthday Party, tasting the Homemade Frosting when I make Cupcakes, drinking some Crystal Light (yes, I wouldn’t ever drink that if that was my only choice — I would have preferred to not drink anything to drinking that). Now, I am able to do those kind of things and eat a little bit of those not-so-healthy things and be ok with it. For me, it’s the little steps I take each and every day that really make the difference. A hard thing for me to learn has been that eating something unhealthy is fine for me once in a while. I can aim for a 90/10 instead of a 80/20 if I want, but I know that aiming for a 100/00 won’t do me any good. I know that can I enjoy a little something now and again with my friends and I will be fine.

P.S. I realized I never thanked you for your comments on my biscotti. I am so glad that you guys love cookies as much as I do! Biscotti isn’t as hard as it looks. It at first seemed a really daunting task, but really, it’s just mix and bake! :) See for yourself!

My Life — On The Run.

HEY, MY PEANUT BUTTAH SWIRLS DIPPED IN LUCIOUS DARK CHOCOLATE AND DRIZZLED IN COCONUT BUTTAH!!! (don’t worry, I’m not getting any ideas. ;))

Thank you guys for your amazing comments on my biscotti! It really means a lot to me! I really want to make some more of those — this time, with PEANUT BUTTER and DARK CHOCOLATE! :D What do you say?

Over the last few weeks, I have gone to a TON of camps (there’s one this weekend, too!) and been on quite a few Challenges.

Here’s what’s happened to me with the challenges and Girl’s Camp — My Life On The Run.

With the 28 Day Detox Challenge I really enjoyed the call-ins that we had. We talked with Paige and discussed what was going on. Throughout the challenge, we focused on 4 things (foodwise): Sugar and Caffeine, Gluten, Dairy, and Meat. The caffeine was a breeze (I don’t drink it at all). The sugar wasn’t THAT hard. Difficult, but manageable. Gluten was REALLY hard, but I think I will keep experimenting with it. Dairy: well, I don’t eat that anymore. I already know THAT bothers me. Meat: I already try to keep that to as little as possible (PLANT-FOODS ROCK!!!).  (also, p.s., Paige wanted me to let you know that they will be doing this again in July, so if you sign up now, you get the Early Bird Special. :)) Just to let you know, Paige also has a BLOG, so check it out too!! :) I love it!) Through this challenge, I was able to become more in tune with my body. I found that the more I focus on a plant-based diet, the better I feel. I have more energy, eat a more variety, etc. I am so grateful that I took the chance to do this challenge.

I also went with Erin’s MeatLESS May. That was so much fun. This challenge wasn’t about going vegan — it was about eating less meat. I have learned that the more plant-based I eat, the better I feel. I have more energy. I am happier. Sorry if TMI, but more regular, too. So, therefore, I will strive to eat as much plant-based as I can now — because it make me feel so good.

I also participated in Alex’s Sugar Free Challenge. One thing in my life I strive to maintain is moderation with sugar — the white kind. I try to avoid that white stuff as much as I can. And with natural sugars, I try to keep those to a minimum. If I am going to eat sugar, I would prefer it to come in the form of fruit. With Alex’s Challenge, I’ve been able to recommit myself to eating lower-sugar. :)

Throughout all of these challenges, the most important thing I have learned is that one aspect in my life I need to continually focus on is listening to my body. The more I listen to myself, the more I find I am happier — more energetic — more myself. I have found to look at my body as a car that runs on fuel — fuel as in food. To make the car run its best, I have to put in the best kind of fuel. Therefore, to make my “car” run the best, I must put inside of it the best kind of food. Therefore, what I want to do is feed my body what will make it feel the best — run the best. I want to take care of my body.

………………………………………

In addition to the Challenges, I just came back from Girl’s Camp! (remember when I helped out with the Bake Sale for Girl’s Camp?)

For Girl’s Camp, young women go from ages 12 years old until  17 years old (6 years total). There are 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th years. 5th and 6th year girls are YCLs. Since this was my 5th year, I got to be a YCL (Youth Camp Leader) this year!!! IT WAS SO AMAZING!!!  I had such a great time being able to get to know the girls! When they completed their certifications, I was able to sign my name! I remember being them and wishing I could be a YCL, so I could sign my name in their books!

Our cabins had AIR CONDITIONING!!!

My bunk was the one of the bottom left.

Some of the activities that we did included Archery, Crafts, Games, Swimming, AND SO MUCH MORE!!!

One of my favorite activities was ARCHERY! They had both regular bows and compound bows. Since I’ve used regular bows, I thought I’d try the compound. I LOVED IT!!! It was really hard to pull back at first, but once I did get past that, it was SO easy to aim and shoot!! Bullseye all the way!! :) But, while I was pulling back on my last shot, I think I twisted my arm and my tricep area on the right arm REALLY hurt. I couldn’t pull back at all anymore because of the pain. Don’t worry, the pain subsided after a little while, but it sure did hurt!

In addition to the archery, we made some crafts!!! One of the things we did was make bracelets for some Young Women in Missouri.Missouri had a perilous tornado strike and thousands of people lost everything. One of the leaders of our camp went there and asked how a group of about 150 girls could help out. And they said — you could make them some bracelets!!! That was perfect. So that’s what we did. :)

(Let’s play I SPY! Can you find my bracelet? hint: picture below)

It was so amazing to be able to make the girls bracelets and to write them a note of encouragement.

I made my bracelets with pink and green beads.

It took me a couple of times to get the pattern right so that it would continue on the other end while also being the correct length.

We also painted blocks!

Mine was Green, Blue, and Brown! Brown is one of my favorite colors. Not just because it is the color of Chocolate. Or, maybe that’s why. ;)

Then, we played some GAMES!!! We did the whole un-twist yourselves-out-of-a-knot activity; we even played Red Rover, Red Rover, send ______ right over! I heard more than once “Don’t run towards Kathleen!!! You’ll never get through!” What can I say? Dumbbells really work. :)

But, one of the best things was the Slide.

TALK ABOUT FAST!!!! This was so much fun! Not only was it fast, but very SPINNY!!! We went round and round and round. And then BOOM! we were in the water. :) I may have gone on it quite a few times….. ok, maybe that’s an understatement. ;)

Oh, and we also did pranks. Yes. Lots of them. Our ward (group) got the Prankiest Ward Award.

Someone wants to meet you…..

Haha. It wasn’t just the girls!!! Our leaders did it too!!!!! Toothpaste, sunscreen, cold ice ;), water balloons, tape, candy-filled eggs, ETC!!!! Haha. We were also the roudiest. May I say we like to have fun. :)

FUN IN THE SUN!!! :D Though, it REALLY got hot. Our nurse was reminding us day and night to drink water. Chug, chug, CHUG it down!!!

Foodwise:

We have some fathers and leaders who were THE Chefs this year! It was so sweet of them to take the week off of work and come to Girl’s Camp to cook for us! They are so cute and like to have fun! They had us laughing all day! They cooked for us for every meal — I know, we’re spoiled. :) I am so grateful for them.

Food was a little hard. Fruits and Vegetables were pretty easy — the chefs were already stocked with that. I just brought my own oatmeal (and had that every morning), soy nuts for snacks in the afternoon, and a bag of cream-of-wheat just incase there was a meal I needed to have covered. One thing I learned: apparently, I am remembered as the-girl-who-brought-her-own-oatmeal-last-year, and it happened again this year! I don’t mind though.

Here are some of the eats for the week at Girl’s Camp.

Cream of Wheat with Cinnamon, Pineapple, and a Banana.

Peanut Butter on WW bread, a Pear, a couple of made-from-scratch potato wedges, a HUGE salad (that I already ate), and peppers and onions.

Oatmeal with Protein Powder, Peanut Butter, and Granny Smith Apple.

Salad, BEANS galore, another Granny Smith Apple, and Carrots!

More BEANS, a Pear, Guacamole, and Veggies!

Carrots, a Banana, a Potato, and PEANUT BUTTAH!

One word: Delicious. :)

I had so much fun at Girl’s Camp!!!! I can’t wait til next year when I get to be a 2nd Year YCL!!!

I want to hear from you:

Have you participated in any Challenges recently? Quite a few for me!

Have you ever used a compound bow? Yep — first time!

Are you an artsy/crafty kind of person? I love doing crafts!

xoxox,

Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Hey my Chocolate Chips! :)

Thank you for your comments on my last post. Your comments really make my day bright. :) You guys are so sweet! Remember: YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL JUST THE WAY YOU ARE!

I asked if you wanted Healthified Biscotti.

You heard my cry.

I responded with a treat,

that you can try.

Chocolate Almond Biscotti

printer friendly version

Notes: The sweetness is perfect. But if you don’t have much of a sweet tooth, try halving the stevia. You can use whatever kind of sweetener you’d like. WHOLE GRAIN. VEGAN. VEGETARIAN.

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2/3 cup baking blend stevia (or simply use sugar or maple syrup; if you use maple syrup, cut back on the applesauce a little bit)
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup applesauce
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup almonds, chopped

optional: chocolate chips, melted, to drizzle on cookies

Directions

Toast chopped almonds in a dry skillet until fragrant (about 2-3 minutes). You can also do this in the oven.

Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, stevia, cocoa powder, salt, baking powder, and baking soda.

In another bowl, combine the coconut oil, applesauce, and vanilla.

Beat in the flour mixture.  The dough should be stiff, but not sticky. Mix in the almonds.

Preheat oven to 350*F.  Line a baking sheet with parchment
paper (wax paper will work too). Roll dough into a log (mine was about 13 inches long).

Bake for about 20-25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Let cool on baking sheet for 15 minutes.

Transfer the biscotti log to a cutting sheet. Cut the log on the diagonal with a serrated knife.

Lay the cookies onto the cookie sheet again on their sides and bake for 10 minutes at 325*F.

Turn the cookies onto their other side, and bake for another 10 minutes. Let cool on cooling rack.

Optional: melt chocolate chips in a sandwich baggie. Cut the corner of the bag, and drizzle chocolate onto cookies.

EAT THEM UP!!!!

They are perfect to dip in Hot Chocolate and Vanilla Almond Milk!

Questions of the Day

Do you drink Hot Chocolate in the Summer? I love it so much that I just can’t only drink it to the winter months. :)

I want to know: How do you view the sugar in fruit? I see it as an essential nutrient, but not to be eaten in excess (of course). Fruit still provides many imperative nutrients that the body requires. I’d rather eat the sugar in fruit than regular white sugar, which has been stripped of all of its beneficial nutrients.

I just came home from a week-long Camp (Girl’s Camp), so I’ll update you guys on that soon. Also, I just finished a couple of Challenges, so expect a post coming up soon!

xoxox