Monday, February 20, 2017

Happy 1st Birthday To Our Little Boy

This weekend we celebrated our little one's first birthday!  Where did the year go?  I desperately tried to slow time down this past year, however it still seemed to just speed on.  We have thoroughly enjoyed watching him grow and seeing the positive impact his presence has made on the girls.  We have all been so blessed by him.
Blowing out his candle

Is this for me?

We made the day into a train theme, as it is also the theme of his bedroom.  My father in law has passed down an old electric train which has become a focal point in the nursery.  
1950's toy train

The girls were thrilled to help decorate the dining room and worked hard at creating trains for the decorations.

Not wanting to create too much work for myself, I made two kinds of cupcakes instead of a cake.  A carrot cupcake (sorry no recipe posted) and my chocolate cupcakes with chocolate date icing. Okay, maybe that doesn't sound that simple ;)

Greek yogurt made a great topping for his cupcake,
he devoured it!

On Sunday we also took the opportunity to thank God for our little boy and to acknowledge this blessing through a child dedication at our church. A Child dedication is a public commitment you make before God. The dedication service provides an opportunity to express your desire to lead and spiritually nurture your child in cooperation with the Holy Spirit.   We are so thankful to have been able to share these celebrations with family and friends.

Our little family with our Pastor

A Few More Photos of the Day
I must be explaining something really exciting ;)

Enjoying a New Book

Sunday, February 05, 2017

Almond, Coconut Date Balls (Dairy, Egg, Gluten, Grain and Sugar Free)

I was at a store this week and of course hungry!  Isn't that always the case, being around food makes you hungry.  It is definitely a struggle being out and finding healthy or healthier snack items and I don't always have something I can bring along from home.
I was pleased to find a snack containing dates, coconut and almonds so I picked them up.  It was then, that I remembered I used to make cookie balls more often.  They are so versatile and can be very simple to make.  Here is definitely an easy, quick recipe that is not only tasty but can easy be taken along.

Ingredients (makes 10-15 balls)

  • 2 cups soft dates*
  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened shredded coconut 
  • 1/2 cup ground almonds
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 3 tablespoons extra unsweetened shredded coconut for rolling
*I usually soften mine by letting them sit in hot water for about 30 minutes and then squeezing most of the water out.

  1. Combine all ingredients except the extra coconut for rolling and place in a blender or in a bowl with an immersion blender.
  2. Blend ingredients until all large pieces of date are cut evenly.
  3. Place the 3 tablespoons of remaining coconut onto a plate.
  4. Using your hands take about a tablespoon amount of dough and roll in into a ball.
  5. Roll the ball into the coconut until it is fully covered.
  6. Place all completed balls into covered container and store in the fridge for 1 week or freezer.
  7. Enjoy.

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

Cabbage Bacon Bowl (Dairy, Gluten and Grain Free)

This recipe is one created by my husband.  Once and awhile we are blessed with his culinary creations.  Often he doesn't write down or remember what he has added to the dish but thankfully this one was placed on pen and paper.  This delicious meal which was not only tasty and filling, but also great for a simple budget.

Ingredients (serves 4-5 people)

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 diced onion
  • 1/2 teaspoon mustard seeds
  • 7-9 strips of bacon cut into small pieces
  • 1/2 thinly sliced large white cabbage
  • 1 shredded small zucchini
  • 1 shredded apple
  • 1/2-1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 tablespoon maple syrup
  • sea salt and black pepper to taste
  • 1/3 cup cashews, pecans or walnuts (optional)

  1. In a large wok or frying pan, fry onion, garlic and bacon until it browns and onion is soft.
  2. Add oil and cabbage and fry until cabbage is soft (about 10 minutes.)
  3. Add all remaining ingredients into the pan.
  4. Cook until apple and zucchini are soft, approximately 5 minutes.
  5. Add nuts on top if desired.
  6. Serve as is or place over a bed or rice.

Thursday, January 05, 2017

Almond Thumbprint Cookies (Dairy, Gluten/Grain, Egg and Refined Sugar Free)

I really should have posted these before Christmas as they were created for our Christmas cookie tray however time slipped away.  Life, baby, homeschool, know what I mean :)

These cookies turned out really well and stuck to my diet of egg, dairy and refined sugar free.

Ingredients (makes 12-15 cookies)

  • 1 1/3 cup ground almonds or almond flour
  • 1 tablespoon coconut flour
  • 2 tablespoons tapioca or arrowroot starch
  • 2 tablespoons ground flax
  • 1 tablespoon pysllium husk
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 2 tablespoons coconut or palm sugar (optional-if sweeter is desired)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1-2 teaspoons water (adjust for rolling into balls)
  • 1/3 cup softened coconut oil
  • 1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut (for rolling)
  • 2-3 tablespoons of your favourite jam (I recommend strawberry or raspberry)

  1. Preheat oven to 350 F and prepare cookie tray.
  2. In a large bowl combine all dry ingredients except shredded coconut.
  3. In a medium size bowl combine all wet ingredients except jam.
  4. Add shredded coconut to a plate.
  5. Add wet to the dry and mix just until combined. 
  6. Roll into balls and add a little water if needed to help them stick together.
  7. Roll balls into the shredded coconut.
  8. With your thumb press into the middle of the ball creating a little dip.  You may need to reshape your cookie to ensure it stays together.
  9. Add a little jam into each dip of your cookie balls.
  10. Bake in preheated oven for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown.
  11. Store in air tight container in the fridge or freezer.

Friday, December 02, 2016

Butternut Squash, Apple and Cranberry Bake

I love a good baked vegetable dish.  Squash and apples are a great combination, especially with a hint of maple syrup and some warm spices.  This makes a great side to bring to a potluck or just enjoy at home :)

  • 1/4 cup melted coconut oil 
  • 1 regular size butternut squash peeled and cut into bite sized cubes
  • 2 medium apples or 1 apple and 1 pear, cubed (peeled or unpeeled)
  • 1/3 cup dried cranberries
  • 1/4 cup chopped dates (optional)
  • 1/2 tablespoon pure maple syrup or to taste
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  1. Preheat oven to 375 F.
  2. Combine all ingredients into an oven safe dish and stir to fully coat.
  3. Bake uncovered for 30-40 minutes or until squash is tender.  Stirring 2-3 times while baking to rotate the squash and apples.