Holiday Cards, Taking and Posing for Pictures, Food in the Mail


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Hi Friends!  How is your Monday going so far?  I am happy to be off work today and tomorrow.  I have major work, errands, and projects to get going on.

Like addressing envelopes because I also ordered our Holiday Cards and they arrived.  You’re thinking isn’t it a little early?  Well, yes, it is.  But, I will be traveling in December and without access to US Mail so getting the cards in the mail that is crucial.

Shutterfly Box


Two orange Shutterfly boxes


Box saying Memories inside do not bend
 Loved this on the cardboard box they were mailed in


Overhead of two Shutterfly orange boxes
I only ordered 75 this year.  Anyone want to help me track down 75 addresses and write them out?  You know this my job to do.  Scott can’t find his keys let alone the address of his second cousins in Florida from year to year so this job falls on me.
Here are some of the holiday cards I received last year from family, friends, and bloggie friends
Christmas Cards

I got a package in the mail from Navitas Naturals: Hemp Seeds, Trail Mix, Lip Balm, and a Superfoods Recipe Booklet

Navitas Naturals and Hemp Seeds, Trail Mix


Close up of Navitas Naturals logo


Navitas Naturals Hemp Seeds bag
Hemp Seeds and me are popular lately.  Check This Post for Hemp Seed Recipes and Ideas


Navitas Naturals Trail Mix bag
Trail Mix.  Yum!  

I have a homemade throw-together Trail Mix Recipe Here 
 Bag full of Homemade Trail Mix

Having a few bags pre-made is such a good way to streamline & simplify my efforts and reduce overall kitchen time.
Overhead of bag full of Homemade Trail Mix

Homemade Trail Mix 

And the Trail Mix Recipe Post is also filled with Tons of Tips for How to Save Money on Your Grocery Budget

Back to Navitas Naturals…I love lip balm.  This one smells lovely!

Cocoa Powder limp balm


Navitas Naturals for the Superfoods Recipe Ideas Booklet
Thanks, Navitas Naturals for the Superfoods Recipe Ideas Booklet and the other Goodies!
You can order Navitas Naturals and thousands of other products from supplements to stevia to body wash from
Use code AVE630 to save $5 and free shipping on all orders over $40.
Click Here to Shop!
Click Here to Read More about Vegan Mofo

At the grocery store the other day, I bought a huge container of chili powder.  I put it to use by making Raw Taco Salad with Raw Taco Nut “Meat”    

 Bottles of Mexican-Style Chili Powder and Cayenne Red Pepper


Close up of Raw Taco Nut "Meat"
 You can do just about anything with the “meat”…
Raw Taco Nut "Meat"

 Like plate it on top of dressed Romaine, carrots, tomatoes, and cucumbers for a deconstructed Raw Vegan Taco Salad

Raw Taco Salad with Raw Taco Nut "Meat" Close up of Raw Taco Salad with Raw Taco Nut "Meat" 

 And also make a pot of Hearty Vegan Southwestern Sweet & Spicy Soup

Hearty Vegan Southwestern Sweet & Spicy Soup in pot
Bowl of Hearty Vegan Southwestern Sweet & Spicy Soup

The broth has a kick, but is tempered by the tiny addition of sugar.  Sweet with heat.  My grandma always said to add a pinch of sugar to tomato sauce to bring out the flavor.  She was right!

Close up of Hearty Vegan Southwestern Sweet & Spicy Soup in white bowl

Dessert: Dairy-Free Sundaes with Vegan Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Coffee Softserve

Vegan Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Coffee Softserve in white bowl
Close up of Vegan Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Coffee Softserve

From yesterday’s post and my newest cookie recipe, thanks for the compliments on my Vegan GF Peanut Butter Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies with Peanut Flour and for telling me what your fave cookies are and most everyone said you like your cookies soft and chewy.  No hard and dry cookies!

These cookies are probably my best recipe to date.  Ever. 

Hand holding one Vegan GF Peanut Butter Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie with Peanut Flour
Bottomside of one Vegan GF Peanut Butter Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie with Peanut Flour


Hand holding Vegan GF Peanut Butter Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookie with Peanut Flour close up


Vegan GF Peanut Butter Caramel Chocolate Chip Cookies with Peanut Flour on pan

1. Best thing you ate or did over the weekend?
Cookies, power walking, and power shopping.  Alone.  I can really make tracks at Target, the grocery store, and all my errands when Scott has Skylar.

2. Holiday Cards.  If you’re a parent, do you send them out?  With or without pictures of your kids?

If you’re not a parent, do you write holiday cards out or send them to others?  Why or why not?
I wasn’t going to do them because it’s a pain and a time suck selecting photos, editing them, cropping them, and working with the semi-glitchy Shutterfly software or other photo websites to create holiday cards.

But not sending cards to family and friends with our precious 3 year old in them just doesn’t feel right.  Holiday Cards + 3 Year Olds = The stuff that Parenthood and Memories are made of.

Plus, I know that my relatives who I don’t see often really enjoy getting a holiday card and so I do it for them, too.

3. As a child, did your parents have you pose for holiday card pictures?  Or pose for family portraits?  How was it?
Part of the reason I am probably “loyal” to the idea of holiday photo cards is that my parents sent out cards of my sister and I every year until we were in high school.

My sister is almost 4 years younger than I am and getting the two of us to “post” for pictures and both look acceptable was quite a challenge.  And back in the day before digital photos, online photos services, and everything being nearly instant gratification and instant result, it was very different.

My parents would haul us to some kind of “pretty landscape” type place so we’d have a “good backdrop” in the photos, and would proceed to take 3 or 4 rolls worth of film and then send them off to be developed and we’d hope for the best.  No tongues sticking out, no crying, no melting down, no arguing, and both of us looking at the camera.  That’s all you can hope for with two little kids sometimes!

4. Do you like getting your picture taken or posing for pictures?  
I like it and I think it’s fun but I know some people hate it.  My dad, for instance, does not like it, at all.  In fact, there are considerably fewer pictures of him that we have as keepsakes over the years because he’s just not into it.

And then there’s always that person who has to run to the restroom or run out of the room when the camera comes out and someone wants to snap pictures.

Or that person who runs to the front of group shot and has to be front and center because they just love being in pictures.

5. Do you like the way you look in pictures?
I would suffice to say most of us are hyper-critical of the way we look in pictures even if someone else thinks you look just fine.

I mean, how many times have you instantly ruled out a photo of yourself because you found a flaw with it, but that your friend, boyfriend, husband, mother, etc thought you looked good?  Lots, I’d suspect!

Time for me to get my workout going!  I’ve streamlined my fitness routine into 20 minutes, and it can all be done at home, with a yoga mat, a pair of dumbbells, and an exercise ball.  Not much space or budget$ required!

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