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Peanut Butter Eggs

I’m a big fan of Easter.

1. I love brunch.
2. I love spring (warm spring, not rainy spring).
3. I love peanut butter eggs. More on this later.

I’ve realized, however, that I’ve got another reason to add to the above list.

4. Getting rid of junk by putting it inside Easter eggs.


Let me clarify. J Man’s preschool was hosting an Easter egg hunt and all the parents were asked to bring pre-stuffed eggs for the hunt.


Knowing me as you do, you’ll know that instead of purchasing jelly beans or m&m’s to put inside our eggs, I bought things like bouncy balls and erasers. Yes, I’m very popular among the kiddos.


So we got home from the store and we started stuffing our eggs and J Man and Miss Rae started bringing stuff from their toy box to put in the eggs. Cheapy matchbox cars, rings from Chuck E. Cheese, etc.


Best. Idea. Ever.

You see, we have an epidemic going on at our house and it’s called TOO MUCH STUFF. It comes from everywhere: birthday parties, back-to-school nights, well meaning family members and more.


And the STUFF is starting to take over our house, our lives, and my well-being. So it was the perfect solution.


And we filled our Easter eggs with random bracelets, tiny little stuffed animals, and miniature slinkys. And we cleared out at least 25 of the 15783 little toys that are multiplying in our house.

And then I made these Raw Peanut Butter Eggs from The Minimalist Baker. The angels Easter bunnies sang in delight. They are that good.

And I considered sending some of them to school as a peace offering for the other moms who have now inherited some of our junk.

At least I didn’t give the kids candy…

Currently, V

Dropping, making, wearing, kissing, keeping.

Dropping: hints to J Man about being a professional golfer.


Make a ton of money playing a “safe” sport? Agreed. Note his Vikings football apparel…and his flip flops. Professional, no doubt.

Making: glazed espresso doughnuts


So delicious. Honestly, I’d make these sans glaze and call them dinner rolls.

Wearing: my Minnie Mouse shades, and wearing them proud.


While in Orlando over Christmas, my sunglasses broke at Disneyland. My sweet MIL bought me a new pair of sunglasses, but as is all merchandise at Disney, they were adorned with cartoon characters. I’m not ashamed.

Kissing: this face


I brought out two newly empty spice jars (paprika and garlic powder) to the sand table. These two empty bottles kept Miss Rae’s attention for a good 45 minutes. It’s the small things:)

Keeping: my eyes set on summer


And thanking Grandma V for planting flowers that surprise me when I least expect it (and totally need it!)

What are you currently up to?

The day I ate all the things

I did four easy miles this morning.

And then I came home and ate all the things.

I’ve basically doubled my weekly mileage the past few weeks (where I was typically running less than 10 miles a week, now I’m hitting about 18 or so) and my appetite has been weird.

At first it seemed like my running was almost an appetite suppressant. I’d get home from my long run on Sunday, not a bit hungry, and wouldn’t feel like eating any food for a number of hours.

But all that has changed and I’m hungry!



Spelt oats with banana, chia seeds, almond butter and almond milk.

Coffee. Consumed so fast I couldn’t be bothered to capture the moment.



Salad beast with romaine, bell pepper, carrots, cucumber, olives, tofu, lentils, and sunflower seeds.

+a cup of really ugly, but really delicious chili. You don’t need a photo. It looked like gross.



Pretzel Crisps and…


Larabar and…


An orange and…

Some of the kid’s fishy crackers, stolen directly from their snack bowl.



Brown rice, vital wheat gluten, green beans, bell pepper and carrots.

And now I’m drinking this…



And imagining this…


Will I ever be full?

Chocolate Vanilla Swirl Pancakes

If you’ve been reading this blog for awhile, you probably have some perceptions about my children.

Miss Rae:


Sassy, demanding and high maintenance.

J Man:


Easy going, well behaved, very respectful.

And if these are your perceptions, I can’t blame you because this is what I’ve led you to believe.

But before you assume that the boy is always perfect and the girl is always trying, let’s clear that up.

The boy has a bit of a stubborn streak. A bit of an independent streak. A bit of a “I’m 5, but I’m certain that I’m smarter than you” streak.

Case in point:

J Man: “Grandma, let me tell you something that I don’t think you know.”

Grandma: “What’s that?”

J Man: “12-5=7″

Most recently, he’s decided that if he doesn’t like whatever consequence or punishment he might be experiencing, he has the option of ignoring said consequence.

(J Man and Miss Rae arguing over the same book.)

Me: “Oh, so sad! If you keep arguing, we’ll put the book away.”

(J Man and Miss Rae arguing over the same book.)

Me: “Oh, so sad! I guess we’ll put the book away.”

I retrieve the book and put it up on a shelf. J Man gets a look in his eye. A deviant, wicked, determined look.

J Man: “I’ll just find a ladder and climb up and get that book.”

Me: “Ok.”

That kid ran downstairs and brought up random things that he was certain he could stand on to reach the elusive book.

I watched in amusement. He came over to me and whispered, “Tonight, when you’re sleeping, I’m going to get out of bed and come out here, and climb up on that counter and get that book.”

Stubborn. Determined. And a little bit spooky.


You know what you should give kids who are naughty?

Ice cream. Chocolate Vanilla Swirl Ice cream.

Oh wait. That’s not right. Instead, I made my stubborn, determined children pancakes.


Chocolate Vanilla Swirl Pancakes.


One batch of vanilla pancake batter and one batch of chocolate. Two separate squeeze bottles and a little creativity.


Miss Rae preferred the vanilla swirls- vanilla to mirror her angelic attitude?

J Man preferred the chocolate swirls- chocolate to mirror the dark side of his personality?


I preferred mine topped with banana. I’ll let you make your own judgments about my personality.

Later that night, J Man prayed a beautiful prayer, requesting that Jesus help him make good choices.

Miss Rae: “Mommy, do you love Jesus?”

Me: “Yes, I do! Do you?”

Miss Rae: “Well, most of the time…”

I think I’m the one who needs prayer…

Chocolate Vanilla Swirl Pancakes


Vanilla swirl
1 cup unbleached flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 TBS sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup almond milk
2 TBS vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla

Chocolate swirl
1 cup ww pastry flour
1/4 tsp salt
1 TBS sugar
2 TBS cocoa powder
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup almond milk
2 TBS vegetable oil


In a medium bowl, combine dry ingredients for vanilla swirl. In a small bowl, combine wet ingredients for vanilla swirl. Add milk mixture to flour mixture, stirring until just combined.

Pour batter into a squeeze bottle. Repeat with the same bowls for chocolate swirl.

Other recipes with unbleached flour. Walnut Blondies? Looks good!

She & Him, 15/52



A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2014

She: A doubtful fairy

Him: An exuberant chef

Four Coconut Kale

J Man didn’t think he’d like coconut, but then he tried it and realized he loved coconut.

J Man didn’t think he’d like girls, but then he met some and realized he loved girls.

More about the coconut later.

First, a story about my little Romeo.


I’ve already shared with you his “relationship” with Carly. Then, last week in church, I caught him holding hands with Brianna. Two ladies? Really?

Yesterday as I was dropping him off at preschool, his teacher took me outside to show me what he had written in sidewalk chalk: “To Ava from Jackson” with a big heart.

So last night, Matty B said, “Did Teacher Melissa talk to you about J Man and that girl?”

“Oh, Ava?” I replied.

“No,” he said sounding confused. “Apparently J Man and Sahilah were holding hands at school today.”

Four ladies? Really?

Maybe it’s his coconut breath.

The kid loves coconut, which is kind of surprising to me, being how picky he is.


Looking back at previous recipes, I realize that I’ve already posted a coconut kale recipe.


But this recipe has large flake coconut.


It has coconut oil.


It has shredded coconut.


AND I put Earth Balance coconut spread on my sweet potato.

That’s FOUR coconuts.

And as J Man will testify, four is always better than one…

Four Coconut Kale


2 cups kale
1 tsp coconut oil
1/4 cup large flake coconut
1 TBS Bragg’s liquid aminos
1 TBS shredded coconut
Optional: baked sweet potato and Earth Balance coconut spread


Preheat oven to 400.

Massage kale and flaked coconut with oil and liquid aminos.

Bake on a cookie sheet for 10-12 minutes.

Lightly toast shredded coconut in a fry pan over medium heat, 2-3 minutes.

Top baked sweet potato with kale mixture and toasted coconut.


I’m totally a morning person. 99% of the time I prefer to wake up early for a run or a yoga class. I just feel like my day gets off to a better start.

I had 6.5 miles planned for tomorrow morning.

But tonight I came home from work grumpy. This is real life. It’s not always roses and butterflies. Sometimes, it’s thorns and (in the case of my current office situation) ants.

So because I have the best husband ever, at 7:00 pm tonight, I went for a run.

Miles 1-2 I was mad.

Mile 3 I was numb.

Mile 4 I cried. Crying and running is kinda hard, but I felt so much better afterward.

Mile 5 I jammed to a little Rolling Stones. (LOVE Beast of Burden. I don’t know why.)

Mile 6 I thought, if today were Bloomsday, I’d only have 1.456 miles left and I could totally do that. That gave me peace.

I brought these gels with me. They were amazing.


And even though I’m a self proclaimed morning person, there are some pros to running at night:

1. Walla Walla sunsets are even more beautiful than Walla Walla sunrises.

2. Thinking time. Processing time.

3. I like running at dusk. It makes me feel faster. Is that weird?

4. The yoga afterward. That’s definitely weird, huh?

(FYI, that’s not me. It’s my yoga app friend. I call her Annie.)


Regardless of whether you’ve run in the morning or at night, do you know what you need if you run 6.5 miles?


Bread. That’s right. You need bread.


I’m calling this bread “naan”, but if you’re Indian and think I’m a big faker, I accept your judgement. If Annie were my real life friend, she’d definitely be judging my yoga. I can’t do “crow”. Can anyone do crow?

That girl can.

But back to the “naan.” I’m typically afraid of yeast, but this worked out really well!


Once the dough had risen, I rolled it into corn tortilla size rounds and cooked them in a dry skillet, just a few minutes on each side.


We had them with falafels and tabbouleh.


I think you’re typically supposed to “carbo-load” before a run- not necessarily after. But I kinda want some more right now.

Annie won’t judge. She’s my friend.


2 cups AP flour + 1/4 cup
1 package active dry yeast
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1 cup hot water
2 TBS olive oil


Combine all dry ingredients except 1/4 cup flour. Add water and oil. Mix until combined. Dough will be shaggy. Cover with a towel and let sit for 30-45 minutes. Mix in additional 1/4 cup flour, recover and let sit 15 minutes.

Divide dough into 12 pieces. On a floured surface, roll each piece into a small disk. Cook in a dry skillet over medium heat until golden brown on each side.


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