Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Applesauce Oatmeal Muffins

I suppose it’s time to share something personal with you guys, I was never a baker. I hadn't baked a thing (since being a little kid) before I moved in with Sean; but Sean likes treats: granola bars, cookies, muffins and I despise the processed ingredients and copious amounts of sugar that go into the ones you buy at the grocery store. So I started a new adventure of baking, I was always a cook, I love to spend hours in my kitchen creating new dishes, experimenting with flavours and sampling everything as it goes, but I never liked baking. Probably because I’m not a big fan of baked goods; and why would I make them if I won’t eat them? But then there was Sean, and his love of baked goods and treats coming right up against my hatred of processed sugars and starchy baked goods. I just can’t have him putting such junk into his body on a daily basis. So I decided to get into the kitchen and attempt the art of baking, my first few experiments didn’t work out that well but I think I’ve come a long way and I’m hooked.

 




We both work long hours, and when you include commuting on top of it our hours at home are minimal, especially in the morning when you just want those extra 10 minutes in bed! These Applesauce Oatmeal muffins are the perfect grab-and-go breakfast for busy mornings as they are gluten-free and won’t make you feel heavy and full. With no processed sugars or additives you can feel great about eating one on your way out the door, and another for your mid-morning snack!


Applesauce Oatmeal Muffins

You’ll be watching the oven, waiting anxiously and watching the seconds tick by as the light cinnamon and applesauce smell of these muffins fills your house; the best part is they are guilt free so you can feel good about slathering butter on a piping-hot muffin and enjoying it with a cup of tea!

Time:
Prep Time: 1 hour and 15 minutes // Cook Time: 20 – 25 minutes // Yields: 12 muffins

Ingredients:
1.       1 c. steel cut or rolled oats
2.       1 c. almond milk
3.       1 c. oat flour (I make mine by blending oats to a flour consistency in my magic bullet)
4.       1 1/2 tsp baking powder
5.       1 tsp baking soda
6.       1/4 tsp salt
7.       1 tsp cinnamon
8.       1/4 c. shredded unsweetened coconut
9.       1/2 c. applesauce
10.   1 egg, lightly beaten
11.   2 TBSP pure maple syrup

Directions:
1.       Preheat oven to 375°C
2.       In a medium bowl, cover oats with milk and let sit for one hour (this softens the oats and makes the muffins super moist)
3.       In a large bowl whisk oat flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon and shredded coconut together
4.       Add Applesauce, egg and maple syrup to the oat/milk mixture and stir until fully combined
5.       Add the wet ingredients to the dry, mix with a spatula until just combined (don’t over mix as it will make the muffins dense
6.       Grease your muffin tin (I use coconut oil) and fill each cup about 2/3 with mixture, top with more shredded coconut and bake for 20 – 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted comes out clean.
7.       Enjoy with a cup of tea, a bit of butter or store in the fridge for up to one week for quick breakfasts on the go!

Emily.xo


Monday, 28 April 2014

Buffalo Chicken Bites

The weather here in Calgary just loves to play tricks on us, one day it is sunny and +15 and the next morning we wake up to an inch of snow and -1; it makes it difficult to plan meals ahead which I like to do! But I don’t want to be making hot soup on a hot day, or a cold salad when it’s snowing out; but what are you going to do.. When you can’t control the weather but you really have a craving for Buffalo Chicken Bites you might just have to eat them on a sunny Spring day!





I was never a big fan of spicy food growing up, in fact I probably was one of the biggest spice wimps that was ever around! I’d cringe at the thought of hot sauce and refuse to eat anything with the slightest heat; but all that changed when Sean and I got together – he opened my eyes to the wonderful world of spicy food and now I couldn't love it more. We are always adding Frank’s Red Hot sauce, Srirachi or Tabasco to our meals to find the perfect level of spice; and the more I add, the higher my tolerance rises. So when I found a big bottle of franks red hot sauce and chicken breasts on sale I just knew that buffalo chicken was in our near future.

Buffalo Chicken Bites

This spicy chicken is perfect for a cool spring night; it will make your taste buds sing and your face flush! Just make sure you have a nice, light side and a tall glass of water and you’ll be sure to have a delicious dinner feast!

Time:

Prep Time: 5 minutes // Cook Time: 35 – 45 minutes // Yields: 4 servings

Ingredients:

1.       1/4 cup brown sugar
2.       3/4 cup Franks Red Hot sauce
3.       1 TBSP rice wine vinegar
4.       1TBSP garlic powder or flakes
5.       Salt and pepper to taste
6.       5 chicken breasts, trimmed and cut into bite size chunks

Directions:
1.       In a large mixing bowl, thoroughly whisk together brown sugar, Franks Red Hot sauce, rice wine vinegar, garlic powder and salt and pepper (if wanted)
2.       Season chicken with salt and pepper, then add to the sauce and mix well (you can let the chicken marinade for as long as you want to really enhance the flavours, I like to prepare my chicken in the morning and let it marinate in the fridge all day)
3.       Lightly grease an 8x8 pan and add chicken and sauce to it, bake uncovered for 35 – 45 minutes or until chicken is fully cooked, the sauce will be quite liquidy
4.       Serve with rice or quinoa and veggies; or if there is anything else you prefer, serve it with that! This dish will go with most any side J


Emily.xo

Thursday, 24 April 2014

Easy Chicken Rotini

Sometimes the weeknights can become a hectic scramble for us, between ball practices, Sean’s hockey practices and over-time at work it can be tough to find time to make a complete dinner when I’d really rather sit down on the couch to watch the newest episode of Chopped. On those evenings the desire to pick something up on the drive home or order a nice, cheesy pizza can be overwhelming and I really have to ask myself – Do you want to put that into your body? Usually the answer is no, I do not. But then I’m still stuck trying to find a healthy dinner that doesn’t take too much effort.


As I was perusing Damn Delicious I came across a one-skillet pasta dish that looked interesting. I based my ideas for this dish off of that, but I wasn’t confident in one-skillet so I cooked my pasta separately, I also threw in some more veggies to make it a well-balanced meal and voila. A delicious, healthy dinner in about 30 minutes. Yes! And I felt good about it after too, not only was it cheesy and delicious; it was guilt free.

Easy Chicken Parmesan Rotini

A luscious tomato sauce full of juicy veggies, chicken and creamy, cheesy goodness. Why reach for the take-out menu when this comes together in just over 30 minutes?

Time:
Prep Time: 10 minutes // Cook time: 25 minutes //Total: 35 minutes // Yields: 5 servings


Ingredients:
1.       1 package multigrain rotini
2.       1 TBSP grape seed oil (or oil of choice)
3.       1 lb extra-lean ground chicken or turkey
4.       1 red pepper, diced
5.       1 small yellow onion, diced
6.       6 cloves garlic, minced
7.       1 c. Chopped spinach
8.       1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes, + 1/4 can of water
9.       2 TBSP dried oregano
10.   2 TBSP dried basil
11.   1 TBSP roasted garlic flakes
12.   Pepper to taste
13.   1/3 cup parmesan cheese, grated

Directions:
1.       Cook pasta according to directions on package
2.       While pasta is going, heat oil in a large skillet over medium – high heat, add garlic and onion and cook until translucent, about 3 minutes.
3.       Add chicken, and cook another few minutes until chicken is browned and broken into smaller pieces; then add red pepper and remaining spices. Once the chicken is fully cooked through, reduce the heat to low-medium and add the crushed tomatoes, water and spinach; stir together and let simmer.
4.       As soon as the pasta is done to your liking, drain and return to the pot. Add the sauce to the pasta and stir in the grated parmesan. Cover and let sit for 5 minutes on low heat for the flavours to meld.
5.       Top with more grated parmesan and garlic toast on the side.

*Note – As this is a pasta dish you can feel free to add any veggies or use any meat you like, I chose chicken because it’s lighter than beef or pork. This would be great if you topped it with mozzarella and baked it, covered with aluminum foil, in the oven for 15 minutes but unfortunately for me Sean does not like melted cheese. L


Emily.xo

Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Blueberry Spinach Smoothie

 Don’t you just love the spring time, when you wake up and the sunshine is coming through the blinds to greet you like an old friend? I always find it so much easier to haul myself out of bed, although that hasn’t been a problem since we got Hobbes. He’s about 8 months old now and seems to be going through the ‘teenage adolescent’ stage, meaning he loves to wake us up at 3:00 a.m. by running around like a fool! He also loves his early morning cuddles with me, as soon as my alarm goes off he’s on me, giving me his sweet cuddles and hugs. Really, he does hug. He sure is a wonderful kitty, except at 3:00 a.m. But back to the sunshine in the morning, I always find it so inspiring. I wake up and think, the sun’s shining yay! I better have something healthy to start my day. I’m not sure why, but the sun makes me think of healthy food! (Yes, probably because it means bikini season is coming, yikes!)


Generally my morning start with a nice cup of black tea with milk and honey, and half of a whole-wheat English muffin with my home-made almond butter (recipe coming next time I make a batch!!) and then for my mid-morning nourishment I opt for a smoothie. Today I was feeling particularly adventurous, knowing that I’d have a yoga class at lunch time to get through so I decided to throw a handful of spinach into my smoothie. I do this quite often when my smoothies need to be more of a meal then a delicious treat, and this did not disappoint. I couldn’t resist and drank it right away, and then had to make a second for later!


















I love the thick, creamy consistency of this smoothie as well as the delicious flavours from the fruit; many of you may say spinach? In a smoothie? No Way. But you’d be wrong. So wrong. Spinach in a smoothie is the perfect addition, the taste of it is masked by the fruit and it’s supplying plenty of extra protein and nutrients. I love to have a spinach smoothie before my lunch time yoga class, that way I know I’ll have the energy to really enjoy my practice without my stomach singing to the room (so embarrassing!!)


Blueberry Spinach Smoothie
This creamy, nutrient packed smoothie is perfect for breakfast, pre-work out or post-work out snack; it provides protein for your muscles and tastes like a bit of heaven! The coconut-blueberry-banana mix is a perfect blend of flavours, while the oats and spinach are packed with fiber and protein.

Time
Prep Time: 5 minutes // Yields: 1 serving

Ingredients
1.       1/4 c. oats, ground into flour consistency
2.       1/2 banana
3.       1/3 c. Frozen blueberries
4.       Handful of spinach, rinsed and roughly chopped
5.       Coconut water (roughly 1/2 - 2/3 c.)

Directions
1.       Add oats to blender and cover with some of coconut water, stir to combine well.
2.       Add banana, spinach and blueberries to the blender, and then fill about blender 2/3 full with remaining coconut water and blend until a nice, smooth consistency. There will probably be little bits of spinach that don’t blend, just take your floss with you!
*Please note – I did not measure the coconut water, so I’m guessing. It would be best to follow directions and eye ball.



Emily.xo

Monday, 21 April 2014

Beef Broccoli

Sundays are always such a hectic day! To start, I always try to do all my baking for our lunches so we can feed on healthy, nutritious snacks at work. We always do our weekly grocery shop, all the cleaning and laundry. And our slo-pitch team practices on Sunday afternoons; these practices usually last 2 ½ - 3 ½ hours and leave us exhausted and sore. So when I walk in the door at 5:00/5:30 after a long day the last thing I want to do is cook a big dinner, sorry that’s the second last, the last thing I want to do is eat out. After such a busy day all I want is a hot, healthy meal that will nourish my body after the rigorous work-out it’s gotten. Enter my slow cooker.

In the past I’ve always felt my slow cooker to be the week day saviour; but I’ve never considered its potential to ease my weekends. I suppose I always felt that it was cheating on the weekends, when I “have all day off” (I use that term loosely) why would I use my slow cooker? But then ball season started. You see, I’ve been playing ball for years but I was always single before. I never had to consider what Sean was going to eat after a long practice; personally I’d be fine with a nice cheese, tomato, cucumber wrap with a salad on the side. But Sean has a much bigger appetite and needs a healthy dose of protein in all his meals. So I started looking at my slow cooker in a new way, a weekend way, and this lead me to trying these Beef Broccoli stir fry, original recipe here.


Beef Broccoli
This stir fry was so delicious! With tender, melt in your mouth beef; crunchy, juicy broccoli and toasty sesame seeds you’ll be going back for a second helping of this guilt-free deliciousness! You might want to make a double batch!
Time
 Prep Time: 10 minutes // Cook Time: 6 ½ - 8 ½ hours

Ingredients:
1.       1-2 lb boneless beef roast, sliced into ¼ inch strips (I used a chuck roast, but any cut will work)
2.       2 heads broccoli, cut into florets
3.       1 c beef broth (I used a bouillon cube dissolved in hot water)
4.       ½ c soy sauce
5.       1 TBSP sesame oil
6.       6 cloves garlic, minced
7.       1 TBSP chili garlic paste (I use the rooster brand)
8.       2 TBSP cornstarch
9.       4 tbsp white sesame seeds

Directions:
1.       Place strips of beef into slow cooker
2.       Mix beef broth, soy sauce, sesame oil, garlic and chili garlic paste in a small bowl and pour over the beef, mix lightly to coat all the meat and cook on low for 6 – 8 hours (I did 8 and it was marvelous)
3.       Mix cornstarch with 2 TBSP liquid from the cooker, add back into the mixture and stir well to combine
4.       Add the broccoli florets and mix well.
5.       Cover and cook on high for 30 minutes, the sauce will thicken and the broccoli will cook to perfection.
6.       Toast sesame seeds in a non-stick pan over medium heat, stirring occasionally until golden (about 6-8 minutes)

7.       Serve over brown rice, with toasted sesame seeds to top.
   
   Emily.xo







Saturday, 19 April 2014

Banana Protein Cookies

So last week at work I caved and had a cookie from the cafe next door, it was a cool afternoon and I needed something to accompany me tea. Now usually I have a keen supply of home-made energy balls or protein bars for exactly these situations, but sadly on this tragic day I was lacking. So as stated, I caved and bought an oatmeal cookie. And it was not very good, truly; it was sickly sweet and didn’t have much other flavour. The chef later admitted to me that he uses pre-made cookie mix. I seriously can’t believe I put that crap stuff into my body; I NEVER eat pre-made or pre-packaged foods. Yuck! After the incident my co-worker and I got into a debate about “healthy cookies” which culminated in a challenge.

The Challenge:
My co-worker informed me that there is no such thing as a “healthy cookie”, that cookies are something that simply are un-healthy and that’s the fact of life. Challenge Accepted. Needless to say, my mind started racing with ideas and I took to pinterest to see if I could get some tips. There are plenty of “healthy cookie” recipes out there, but most of them still had some type of sugar or artificial sweetener, flour, ect. I really wanted something that I could be proud to eat before a work-out and feel no guilt about if I gave in to my cravings and had a couple.

On Saturday morning I woke up with a mission in mind, create these healthy cookies. And boy, was I happy with the outcome of my adventure. Not only are these cookies packed with protein and nutrients, they are soft, chewy and heavenly delicious!
Banana Protein Cookies

Time:
 Prep Time: 5 minutes// Cook time: 20 – 25 minutes// Makes around 14 cookies, depending how big you want them.

Ingredients:
1.       2 overly ripe bananas
2.       1 ½ cup rolled or steel-cut oats
3.       1/3 cups peanut butter, softened
4.       1/3 cup unsweetened apple sauce
5.       1 scoop vanilla protein powder
6.       ½ tsp cinnamon
7.       ½ tsp vanilla extract
8.       1 cup chopped walnuts (or nut of choice)
9.       Optional: Chocolate chips to top

Directions:
1.       Preheat oven to 350° and either a) grease a large cookie sheet (I use coconut oil) or b) cover in parchment paper
2.       In a large bowl mash bananas; add peanut butter, applesauce, vanilla extract and protein powder and stir until fully combined
3.       Add oats, cinnamon, walnuts and stir well
4.       Place about 1 TBSP of cookie dough/cookie and flatten with a
5.       Optional: this is where you would place your chocolate chips on the top, or you can stir into the batter for a chocolateier cookie. I put 5 chocolate chips on HALF the cookies for Sean, as I don’t like them on mine
6.       Bake for 20 – 25 minutes, or until cookies are lightly golden and cooked through
7.       Let cool for 5 minutes on sheet before transferring to a wire rack
I love the chewy texture and hint of sweetness from the protein powder and apple sauce in these bad boys, I always eat one before my work out with a handful of toasted almonds.

Emily.xo

Thursday, 17 April 2014

Mexican Quinoa, Bean and Yam Skillet

It was so sunny and warm for the past two weeks and just when I thought spring was here and I could put my winter sweaters and boots away, BAM, an overnight snow fall and the cold weather was back! And right in time for the Easter Long weekend, how are we going to do an Easter egg hunt now? Good thing I’m not a big fan of chocolate, eh? As we all know, with the long weekend come heavy meals, extra treats and more sitting around the living room, chatting with family and friends; thus it seemed the perfect time to try the Mexican quinoa recipe.
I got this dinner idea over at Damn Delicious, whose blog I simply adore! Chung-Ah always takes beautiful pictures that make you drool all over your key board. I’ve also noticed her taste is very similar to mine, although I prefer my food a bit lighter and cleaner. Therefore whenever she posts something so damn delicious I can’t resist, I immediately think of ways to lighten it up. This recipe was already pretty light, but I wanted to add a few more fresh veggies and that’s exactly what I did.





Mexican Quinoa, Bean and Yam Skillet
Time: Prep: 10 minutes Cook time: about 30 minutes
Packed with protein from the Quinoa and beans and chock-full of nutrients and flavour you’re sure to impress anyone at your table with this quick and easy dinner. And it comes together in around 30 minutes, perfect for those busy weeknights!






Ingredients
1.       1 cup uncooked quinoa, rinsed
2.       1 1/3 cup vegetable broth
3.       1 19 oz. can of black beans, drained and rinsed
4.       ½ yam, diced
5.       1 cup canned corn
6.       1 large tomato, diced
7.       6 cloves garlic, minced
8.       1 jalapeño finely chopped
9.       1 TBSP grapeseed oil (or oil of your choice)
10.   1 TBSP cumin
11.   1 ½ - 2 TBSP Chili powder
12.   2 tsp garlic powder
13.   Salt and pepper to taste
14.   1 avocado, diced
15.   Juice of 1 lime or 1 TBSP bottled lime juice

Directions:
1.       Microwave yam for about 2 minutes to soften
2.       Heat oil over medium-high in a large pan, sauté garlic and jalapeño until translucent, about 2 minutes.
3.       Add yam, black beans, tomato, corn, quinoa, vegetable broth and spices to pan and stir to combine. Bring to boil, then reduce heat and let simmer for about 20 – 25 minutes or until quinoa is fully cooked.
4.       Remove from heat; stir in lime juice and avocado.
*you could top this with cilantro or parsley if you prefer.



Emily.xo

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Lightened up Chicken & Turkey burgers

Friday night always seems to be our date night, the only night that we always seem to be at home together. What with Sean’s hockey coaching, hockey games, our ball practices and all the other things that creep up it can be hard to find a nice, quiet evening together. So that’s what we do on Fridays. We make a nice dinner, go for an evening walk and then curl up with Hobbes and watch the latest episode of Hannibal. Such a creepy show, but so interesting and it really keeps you hooked in!


Sean and I are burger lovers. We could eat burgers every night of the week and STILL want them on the weekends, I don’t know why. Although Sean loves meat, I’m not a big fan myself. Especially not of red meat (unless it’s a steak, but that’s another story) but when it comes to burgers I am just smitten. But all that heavy, greasy meat can really put a damper on the healthy living regime. So I decided I would try something new, and boy, was it successful!

These burgers are made with a mix of lean ground turkey and lean ground chicken, topped with creamy, garlicky guacamole and banana peppers for a little kick! You’ll be back for seconds, and feeling good about yourself, when eating these flavourful, juicy burgers!

Turkey Burgers

1 lb ground turkey
1 lb ground chicken
1 small onion, diced
2 TBSP finely chopped pickled jalapenos
1 egg, beaten
6 cloves garlic
1 tsp cumin powder
1 TBSP garlic powder
Salt & pepper to taste
2 TBSP grape seed oil

Directions:
1.       Mix all ingredients, except grape seed oil, in a large bowl and form into patties
2.       Heat oil in a large skillet or grill pan over medium – high heat
3.       Fry patties until fully cooked through, flipping once
4.       Serve on toasted buns with Guacamole and your toppings of choice (I used feta, lettuce and banana peppers and non-fat Greek yogurt.)

-Toppings: Feta, tomato, lettuce, pickle, non-fat Greek yogurt, cucumber, banana pepper, anything you prefer

Guacamole

4 ripe avocados
¼ cup non-fat Greek yogurt
Juice of 1 lemon
6 cloves garlic
2 tsp cumin powder

Directions
1. add garlic to blender and pulse a few times until its chopped up
2. add rest of ingredients and blend until smooth and creamy

Emily.xo

                                               



Sunday, 13 April 2014

Hi-Low Grey Strips with Emerald Blazer


I am so tired of boots. And bulky coats. And knit tights. And.. ect, ect. .. Basically.. WINTER CLOTHES!! So you can imagine my joy at an entire 5 days of warm sunshine and cool spring breezes. It seems that spring has finally landed in Calgary (although I’m surely expecting another snowfall!!) and I’ve been lucky enough to get in TWO spring dresses this week.  I am revelling in the warmth of the sunshine and the cool breeze on my skin; it’s wonderful to be able to enjoy a walk on my lunch break without being wrapped from head to toe. Seriously, it’s been a cold winter. But that’s all behind me now, bring on the sunshine!
  

Today I opted for a more business-casual look, it was a bit cooler then the past week and I wanted to be sure I had a light jacket. I love this grey-striped Hi-Low dress, I've had it for a couple years (it was a steal of a deal from Winners for a whopping $16.99) and I've been able to be creative and pair it with many different shoes, jackets, sweaters and jewellery. Today I went simple with my favourite Emerald Green blazer (from Suzy Shier) for a sleek office look.





I always find a pop of colour on a plain outfit can really brighten up your look, and it’s very keeping with the change of season. I decided to go simple with me jewellery for this outfit. I wore my sparkly black hoops earrings (from Walmart) that Sean bought me for our anniversary, and a long necklace. Also, I did wear a pair of simple black heels, but didn't snap a picture! Sorry! I hope you are inspired to add a pop of colour to your next outfit; I know as well as the next girl that it can be hard to break away from black.. but a pop of colour will brighten your day!

Emily.xo

Friday, 11 April 2014

Mango Raspberry Overnight Oats

Mango-Raspberry overnight oats

My mornings are often so hectic, what with the first task of trying to wrench myself out of bed to the sound of my alarm, to Hobbes requiring morning cuddles, to attempting to look acceptable for the day; breakfast often gets shoved to the side. There is a pleasant little cafe next door to my office with great breakfasts but grabbing eggs and toast every morning adds up. So I’ve made a deal with myself to take breakfast with me every day, and the easiest way to do this is preparing the night before. But my nights are busy too! I try to work-out for 45 minutes when I get home and then it’s straight to the kitchen to cook us a healthy, delicious dinner.. so what can I prepare that’s quick, easy, delicious AND nutritious for on-the-go mornings. And then as I was scavenging Pinterest, I found something interesting. Multiple posts about Overnight Oats.. so I decided to take to the kitchen and experiment.

So far this one is my favourite, although really any berry/fruit mixture is delicious. Feel free to substitute any fruits that you want or sounds delicious. I use the same base for all my overnight oats, and just switch up the fruits.. if I get more creative, I'll let you know!

Mango-Raspberry Overnight Oats

Ingredients:
½ cup quick oats (I’ve seen lots of recipes call for steel cut, I just have quick on hand)
½  cup milk (I often use almond milk, but you can use any type you want)
pinch of cinnamon (you can adjust to your taste here)
½ tsp vanilla extracts
1 TSBP non-fat Greek yogurt (I use Liberte because it’s so creamy)
½ a mango, cubed
¼ cup raspberries (I actually used frozen organic raspberries here!)


Directions:

1.       Add all your ingredients, except fruit to a mason jar, or any glass jar you have with a secure lid.
2.       Stir well
3.       Top with fruit
4.       Put in fridge overnight

5.       Grab a spoon, run out the door and enjoy your healthy, delicious breakfast while scoffing at everyone paying for over-priced eggs and toast!


Options: when I make these oats for Sean I skip the yogurt and add an extra 1 TBSP of the milk  because he can not eat yogurt, it's just as creamy. He gobbles them up at work
       Also, as you can see, I like to add an extra scoop of yogurt on top.. I just love yogurt and find it super delicious! The options are pretty endless, try whatever seems right to you until you find your perfect Overnight Oats!

      Emily.xo

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Spring Dress

Well the weather is finally getting warmer here in Calgary after a tremendously long and cold winter. It's only my first winter here, but all the long-term residents are telling me that this is the coldest they've had in a long time, lucky me eh? My first taste of Winter and it's abysmal, ah well, at least I know I can tough it out!

The thing about me is that I don't love the hot weather, I actually don't really like anything over +23(celsius); it's simply to hot for me. So when this newest Chinook rolled in with a pleasent +10 yesterday I decided it was the perfect time to ditch the dress pants and put on my favorite Spring work dress.
I love this dress because its light, airy and hi-low; I just adore hi-low dresses I think they are flattering, fun, flirty and all around gorgeous! I got this dress over at Bohme.com last season and I find it time-less. The light grey-purple colour makes it wearable during any season and it accents wonderful with bright colours, mellow tones or darker shades. It's versatile! I've enjoyed so many different styles with it already. I paired it with my nude peep-toe heels and a dark Guess denim jacket (sorry, no pic!) Needless to say I was feeling comfortable and pretty in my first Spring outfit!
Emily.xo
*sorry about the awful picture quality, I'll get better ones soon! Promise :)

Tuesday, 8 April 2014

Pink 'n Delicious Morning Smoothie!

So last month for my birthday Sean got me a Magic Bullet, and I'm here to tell you that little machine is super handy in my morning routine! I've used it every day! And it is so versatile, I can use it for smoothies, dressings, sauces, making oat flour, I could go on and on!.. but I won't. But seriously, I love this little guy so much, I don't know how I got along without him!

My favourite way to start the day is with a fresh, fruity smoothie, but I often find that it doesn't give me the protein that I need to get that "start-the-day" boost.. so I've been experimenting. And I'm happy to say, I've found something I love! the Strawberry-Banana-Coconut-Oatmeal smoothie. Wow, that's a mouthful to say.. and this beauty if a mouthful to drink/eat. The oatmeal gives it enough volume to be a meal worthy of mornings and the natural sugars in the fruit help wake me up. Plus I add no-fat Greek yogurt for added protein. I pop it on the base, and 15 seconds later I have my breakfast of champions. Then I have to rush out the door because I'm usually late for the bus!


Protein Packed 'Pink n Delicious' Morning Smoothie
Ingredients:
1/3 cup oats
1 TBSP shredded un-sweetened coconut
1/2 banana
2 TBSP no-fat Greek yogurt(I used liberte here)
frozen strawberries
coconut milk

Directions:
1. add coconut and oats to the Bullet cup and blend until a fine powder (about 8 seconds)
2. add 1/3 cup almond milk and stir with a spoon to smooth it out
3. add the rest of the ingredients to the blender and fill up with coconut milk
4. blend to smooth, creamy perfection and enjoy!

Emily.xo

Saturday, 5 April 2014

A New Adventure

Hello there!

Welcome to the newest adventure of my life, a blog! I've been toying with the idea of having a little website for quite a while now but always thought of it as to scary and overwhelming! What if I can’t keep up with it.. but then I realized that the blog is for me. That’s the simple fact. This is a place where I can record and share my culinary adventures, latest fit tricks and newest fashions. Yippee! That makes it seem much more exciting and less daunting.

If you've stopped by for a visit, I hope you plan to bare with me as I get this website going... Have patience, I’m new. Feel free to send me advice (again, I’m new). I look forward to sharing my passions and dreams with you.

Emily.xo

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