Category Archives: Random Bits and Pieces

I wish I may, I wish I might…

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This is a little joke post that I decided to write so I can make a visual list of some of the things I plan on eating/cooking next week when I’m done cleansing. Ok fine it’s not a joke post at all. I really will make all of these things. I do realize that the purpose of a cleanse is to rid your body of junk but hear me out! These things aren’t terrible. They’re delicious and if I’ve said it once I’ve said it a hundred times, healthy can be delicious. If you know what’s good for ya you’ll be around when I whip these babies up!

1. Veg Pizza

  • Now I know pizza doesn’t sound healthy but this pizza is. The crust is homemade with whole wheat, organic flour. The sauce is organic and local. And then to top that off, its sprinkled with soy-based cheese and loads of fresh veg. If you’re not on a plant-based diet, you could always add your favorite real cheese to this pizza. Everything is fixable! My friend Lauren blogs about this pizza here.

Photo courtesy of L. Bennett 

2. Corn, Edamame, Avocado, and Toasted Sesame Salad
  • This.salad.is.so.good. And it’s so simple I can’t even stand it. It’s light yet filling, flavorful, fresh, and like I already said it’s easy to prepare. It’s perfect for when you’re in a rush or want to throw together something to take to work the next day. I will certainly post about it within the next week so you can have the recipe too!

3. Pesto Hummus

  • I’ve really been craving the creaminess of hummus. But I’ve also been craving that one-of-a-kind basil flavor too. My solution? Pesto Hummus. It’s really easy to make your own hummus and your own pesto so next week when I make it, I’ll post the recipe with some pictures for you. In the meantime, here’s a look at my hydro basil. Soon he’ll sacrifice his life, or at least his leaves, to be a part of something greater. Don’t let him fool you, he’s happy about fulfilling his purpose :)

4. Strawberry Cupcakes

  • These babies are amaaaazzzzing. They were one of the first animal product-free cupcakes I learned to make and they’re still my favorite. These were also the first cupcakes I ever sold to someone. Since it’s still strawberry season (barely) these will taste extra amazing.

Photo courtesy of L. Bennett

See, those things aren’t too bad! All animal product free, mostly plant-based, healthy (aside from sugar in the cupcakes), and oh so delicious. Lucky for you there’s always a seat at my kitchen table. Well, if there actually isn’t a seat, you can have mine! :)

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Eat Well. Live Well.

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That’s their motto at Pure Health Lounge in New Haven. After reading today’s article in the Daily Nutmeg about the new store, which opened in January, I decided to give it a whirl. Obviously I don’t want to write a repeat of the article in the Daily Nutmeg, just wanted to give you a little glimpse into why my tummy is so happy right now.

Even though I make my own juices every day, I’m always up for trying someone else’s creation. The one I chose was the called Pure Green. Aptly named considering every ingredient in this baby is green. Kale, spinach, cucumber, and celery sure do know how to make a girl happy! I got the 16oz juice for $4.95, which is a steal in juice world. A steal I tell you.

Even though I went in to explore the place and maybe grab a juice, I ended up walking out with a sandwich too. Oops! But it was so worth it. I had the Veggie Extreme Panini with lettuce, tomato, carrots, green pepper, olives, cucumber, feta, and balsamic vinaigrette. I definitely recommend this one! While I’m not a calorie counter at all (that would really depress me) you calorie counters out there will be happy to know that this sandwich only had 117 calories. Yeah. You read right. If that doesn’t make you want to go there right now maybe this might:

While I wasn’t super crazy about the atmosphere, the girl who helped me was so, so friendly. She even gave me a sample of fresh squeezed orange juice from this lean mean orange juice squeezing machine. That thing is LEGIT. If, for some bizarre reason, you don’t go in for the juice, smoothies, or food, you have got to see that thing in action. Go!

Re-blog!

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Look it! My friend Lauren wrote a little something about my garden so today, instead of reading my thoughts, you’re reading her thoughts about some of MY favorite hobbies. Pretty sweet.

From the Inside Out

The glory of gardening: hands in the dirt, head in the sun, heart with nature. To nurture a garden is to feed not just on the body, but the soul. ~ Alfred Austin

Growing up, I imagined at one point I would have a quaint little garden of my own, where I could spend hours and hours in the sun growing and nurturing the plants. Just kidding. I didn’t really. I mean, growing up on the farm, we had a garden. It was a small one, but I remember as a kid how nice it was when my mom would go and pick the fresh lettuce or even better, the fresh blackberries which she would mix them into vanilla ice cream. We could sit on the porch out back and watch fireflies come up out of the corn fields. Do any of you siblings remember that?

While my mom is an excellent gardener…

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Wine Down

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One of my favorite things about Connecticut is that there are quite a few wineries here. As much as I love and miss South Carolina, wineries are something we just don’t really have there. Last weekend I went with my good friends, Lauren and Kate, on an impromptu trip to a winery near us in Wallingford, CT. Sometimes you just need to take a couple of hours to wind down and reset yourself, which is exactly what we did. I really don’t have much to say in this post but I got a few really beautiful pictures while we were there. Since I don’t have time to write a thousand words anyway, they’ll probably describe our visit better than I could :)

Who needs Instagram when God gives you this:

Future wine grapes:

As you must know by now, I like all things baby. So naturally I have a picture of baby grape buds:

While we were enjoying our wine a storm was rolling in. At the bottom of this picture, above the ridge line, you can see the rain darkening the horizon. Cool, huh?

And last, but farthest from least, the reason why mini trips like this are more than worth it:

Happy Wednesday :)

And They Blossomed

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“Some things are meant to be. Take my hand, my whole life too. For I can’t help but falling in love with you”  – Elvis Presley, Can’t Help Falling in Love

Today, May 21, is my parents 30th wedding anniversary and this post is a tribute to that. Growing a garden is nice and all but growing a family and a relationship like my parents have is truly an amazing thing. While others have grown apart, gone through divorces, and had to search for what’s next, my parents have managed to keep moving forward together. 33 years ago they found each other and they’ve kept sight of each other since. Some things are meant to be.

“If you believe in love, let’s get it on. Let’s get it onnnnn.”  – Marvin Gaye, Let’s Get It On

Aaaannnd enter yours truly. And then a baby brother. And for good measure let’s throw another baby brother in too. As parents, they have been supportive, encouraging, and honest. Of course, there have been times when we um, disagreed. Like the time I was allowed to cut the grass with the riding mower and ran that sucker into a brick wall. Fail. Or the time I didn’t speak to them for 3 days because they wouldn’t let me get my ears pierced. Ah, how pleasant I must have been. But to this day, I call my dad for support on a plethora of things. Career advice, financial questions, what kind of oil I should put in my car, you get the picture. He always has an answer. I still run ideas by him and I count on him for unparalleled  honest opinions. And once every few days (errr, maybe more often, sorry mom!) I’ll call my mom for advice on something. From getting stains out, to how to season a cast iron skillet (which I used last night, by the way), and most importantly she gives the best friendship and relationship advice. I absolutely would not be who I am today without them. Fights and all.

“Many times I’ve thought to leave but I bite my lip and turn around, ’cause you’re the warmest thing I’ve ever seen.”  – Rod Stewart, You’re in My Heart

I’m so proud of my mom and dad. I’ve never been married but everyone knows marriage is tough, that’s no secret. I’ve seen them struggle and fight. I’ve been in the car on the way to church when no one speaks to each other. Unless you didn’t go to church, you’ve experienced this. If you try to tell me that hasn’t happened in your family, you’re lying! They live a real life and I know it hasn’t been easy along their journey. They’ve owned a successful business for over 20 years and they see each other every single day at work and every single night at home. There have been days, months, probably even years that were difficult for them. So far, the good and the great have outweighed the worst of the worst and that is why I am able to write this today. I can’t even begin to express how thankful I am that they stuck it out and turned around instead of walking away.

“Two hearts that beat as one, our lives have just begun. I’ve found in you my endless love.”  -Lionel Richie, Endless Love

I don’t know what the future holds, that’s the beauty of this life. But what I do know is that in each other, they’ve found an endless love. In this relationship, what they’ve created are the fruit of their labors, the result of hard work and sacrifice, and real growth. And it’s true love. It really is.

Mama and Daddy, I love you. I am proud of you. I am inspired by you. And I’ll be sitting right here, taking notes.

I. Adore. Alpacas.

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So, yes, I do realize that alpacas have nothing to do with my blog. But in my defense, it is my blog.
And if I tried really, really hard I’m sure I could tie the title of this blog in with these alpacas. The alpacas are skinny and bald because their hair is GROWN to be shaved for other uses. They’ll soon GROW more fur. And the cycle continues. See? Perfectly acceptable :)

Now, just look at how precious they are!Image