Wow, I have been ridiculously busy today and Thursday is now almost done!  The best part of that means that we’re one day closer to the weekend!  I don’t have anything set in stone yet for what I’m going to do, but Scott has been traveling this week and he gets home Friday night and after spending days alone taking care of a 3 year old, suffice to say I will be happy to have some help.  If any of you are single parents, or if you grew up in a single-parent home, I truly give major props to the single parents out there!  The gratitude that I have for my husband and that there’s two of us is always reinforced after days on end alone and caring for this cute ball of energy!

Young girl in pink shirt standing in kitchen

Skylar and I have had a super busy day.  I did a couple loads of laundry, washed sheets, we’re still working on that potty-learning thing, and then we jetted off to Whole FoodsMore on what I got ina minute.  But first, thanks for the nice comments about my Coconut Ginger Roasted Veggies from yesterday.

 Coconut Ginger Roasted Veggies
I was surprised to hear how many of you have never tried fennel or that you’ve only had it raw. 
 
Coconut Ginger Roasted Fennel 
Coconut Ginger Roasted Fennel after coming out of oven
 Cooked with Coconut Oil and Ginger, Caramelized and perfect!
Caramelized Fennel

You know I love my raw veggies, but fennel is one I much prefer cooked.  And ironically, people say it has a “licorice flavor”.  I despise black licorice but really adore fennel, so go figure!  I say, give my roasted fennel recipe a whirl.  The worst that happens is you’re out 99 cents for a fennel bulb.  And as a bonus, fennel is like ginger in that it’s extremely soothing and beneficial for your tummy and digestion. 

I really savored your comments about if you feel you’re in charge of or the boss of your own lifeOr is your life in charge of you Many of you said that you do feel in charge, but that you’re people pleasers or that you’re struggling taking the reigns of your life back under your own controlThe are you driving the train of life, or is the train driving you, question seemed thought-provoking judging by your awesome comments, and it’s something I check-in with and evaluate where things are at to make sure life doesn’t get toooo offtrack, which can happen in a hurry! 

Moving On…
Today I decided to go to Whole Foods. 

Coconut Spray  Oil, Vegenaise, Nutritional Yeast and  Maca Powder

 I have expressed my dismay for this store in the past.  And I have also talked about why I don’t always buy organic.  There are, however, a few items that it’s cheaper for me to buy there than try to order online or that are refrigerated and it makes little sense to order themFor one, Veganaise.

Jar of Vegenaise
Hand holding jar of Vegenaise
Nutritional Facts of Vegenaise

 …Which I use to make my Homemade Vegan Slaw Dressing, which I never seem to tire of.

Homemade Vegan Slaw Dressing

And I needed Nooch

Container of Nutritional Yeast

Holy Protein (9 g in 3 Tbsp, and 80 calories) & B-Vitamins, Batman!

Back of container of Nutritional Yeast showing Nutrition Facts
More Nutrition Facts on Yeast Container
Nutrition Facts of Nutritional Yeast
 I needed to replished my nooch stash from all that Popcorn I’ve been pouring it on!  
Nutritional Yeast Popcorn in bowl

And then I picked up some Maca.  

Bag of Maca Powder

 Half the blogosphere has tried Maca.  I have been in the half that hasn’t.  Til Today!  

Bottom of bag of Maca Powder

Julie, Heather, Lara, The Pure Twins, Gina, Gena, Paige, Deb, Lori, Katie who also has a contest going, the list goes on and on….Tell me Maca Goddesses or Gods, how do you like to incorporate maca in your life? 
I picked up the Navitas Naturals Maca because based on price and size, it seemed like the best quality and value.

Navitas Naturals website
Nutrition Facts on Maca Powder
Maca Powder Nutrion Facts

I am really impressed with the health benefits Click Here or Here and the Super Food Status, which are some benefits that have prompted me to jump on the maca bandwagon!

Suggested Uses and Benefits of Maca Powder

From Lara’s Beautiful Post on the Topic and from this Site that Lori Sent me To:
Maca benefits:  (source)
Male:

  • Increases energy (Chronic Fatigue)
  • Treat sexual dysfunction (Loss of Libido)
  • Increases stamina & athletic performance
  • Nourishes glandular system
  • Fertility enhancement
  • Improves physical and emotional well being
  • Promotes mental clarity
  • Balance hormones

Female:

  • Treat PMS (Mood Swings)
  • Menopause symptom relief (Hot Flashes)
  • Sexual stimulation
  • Nourishes glandular system
  • HRT alternative(Hormone Replacement Therapy)
  • Increases stamina & athletic performance
  • Increases energy (Chronic Fatigue)
  • Balance hormones

If anyone has any experience with Maca, let me know what brand you use or your thoughts! 


I also picked up some Coconut Oil Spray!

Coconut Spray Oil
Nutrition Facts on Coconut Spray  Oil
Company information on Coconut Spray Oil

It’s Refined and if you missed the Difference between Refined and Un-Refined Coconut Oil, Click Here.

Refined Coconut Oil

I am really excited for the fine mist to spray all over my Popcorn!  
Click Here for my Super Easy & Healthy Cooking Method 

Popcorn with coconut oil spray

Melting my solidified Coconut Oil is usually fine with me…

Coconut oil jar

…But for midnight snacks, this spray is just what I need!

Bottle of Coconut Oil Spray

After I got back from WF, there were a couple boxes waiting for me!
First Up…
Xagave

Agave Nectar Bottle
Close up label of Agave Nectar

I know that there is some bru-ha-ha surrounding agaveI personally am fine with using agave My thought is that although it may not be perfect, in certain cooking applications, it’s a perfect go-to ingredient to use when maple is too mapley and yacon syrup is too earthy in recipes or when grinding dates will not work and a liquid sweetener is really preferred.  My Raw Vegan Chocolate Mousse recipe..

Raw Vegan Chocolate Mousse

 

Close up of Raw Vegan Chocolate Mousse

Or my Raw Vegan Apple Crumble would be a couple of Recipes, off the top of my head, where Agave is my Preferred Sweetener.

Raw Vegan Apple Crumble

 

Side view of Raw Vegan Apple Crumble

I have used Xagave in the past and I really love it.  I love how 1 Tbsp provides 17% of the RDA for calciumThat’s an amazing stat!!!

Nutritional information on Agave Nectar
Nutrition label on Agave Nectar
Xagave label Premium Raw Agave Nectar

Thanks, Xagave, I love your agave and have used it in the past.  I find that it’s sweeter than other brands, a little goes a long way, and I love the calcium aspect which is a great added-bonus!  Don’t drink your milk for calcium, just drink your agave…haha!

Xagave company information on bottle

And there was a lovely Card and Note Pad from Cindy!

Card and notepad

Calgon Take Me Away!  Yeah Baby!

Inside card with bath tub that says rest, relax, renew
Thanks, Cindy, for thinking of me and for sending some love and sunshine in the mail!  It totally brightened my day…Muah!!!!!!!  You all know that blogging and the friendships that I have made has truly changed my life!  I’ve talked about this before, but I am so blessed to have “met” so many new friends!!!  Blogging is not about the food so much as it’s about the People & Friends I’ve Made!

Then there was a package from Foods Alive

Various Foods Alive Products

Flax Oils

Two containers of Flax Oil DressingFlax Oil Dressing in Mike's Special and Sweet & Sassy Flavors

I can’t wait to try the Sweet & SassyI flood pour my own homemade sweet & tangy Vegan Slaw Dressing..

Jar of Vegan Slaw Dressing

…all over my veggies and green food, so this new Sweet & Sassy is right up my alley!

Stats

Label of ingredients in Flax Oil Dressing
Nutrition Label of Flax Oil Dressing

And Flax Crackers

Flax Crackers Nutrition Label of Flax Crackers

Hemp Crackers

Hemp Crackers

Info About Foods Alive that I like is that they are Organic, Vegan, GF, Living Foods, Great source of Fiber and  Essential Fatty Acids!

Info about Foods Alive brandFoods Alive pamphlet

Thanks, Foods Alive and I will keep you all posted as I eat my way through this stash! I know Naomi is a huge fan and I can already tell I’m going to be as well!

Foods Alive website

Green Food was a with some of the Roasted Coconut Ginger Fennel Mixed In (kinda looks like chicken, but it’s coconut oil that solidified onto the fennel and turned it white in the fridgeYes, sometimes I do leftovers and love it when I have something already made and waiting for me!)

Greens with Roasted Coconut Ginger Fennel
Close up of Roasted Coconut Ginger Fennel over greens

I topped it with my Maple Ginger Dijon Vinaigrette

Ingredients to make Maple Ginger Dijon Vinaigrette in bowl
Maple Ginger Dijon Vinaigrette whisked up
Greens with Maple Ginger Dijon Vinaigrette

Dessert was Raw Vegan Chocolate Mousse!

Raw Vegan Chocolate Mousse in bowl 
And yes, Popcorn with Nooch (nutritional yeast), Cinnamon, and Chocolate Chips was perfect!  Especially about midnight!  I’m thinking this is my new go-to when I want crunchy, sweet, savory, all in one!  I can’t wait to pour my new Maca all over it, too!
Nutritional Yeast popcorn with chocolate chips

 Yoga Today is Scorpion Pose (Vrschikasana)

Woman doing  Scorpion yoga pose

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I get my protein powder (Sun Warrior), my probiotics (Jarrow), my supplements and natural food (Navitas Naturals when I plan ahead and don’t get them from WF where they’re twice the price!), and my natural body care products (Jason) or my Stevia (NuNaturals or Wisdom) iHerb.com is your One Stop Shop for it all!!!

The Code Again to Save $5 Bucks is AVE630

Questions
What do you want to make that you’ve seen in the ‘sphere?  How much has the food/products that you’ve seen on blogs effect your food choices?  Has it all been for the good?  I hope so and for me, it has!  Can you say Nooch, Chia Seeds, Soaked Oats, to name a few!

Have you tried Maca? Do you use Agave?  Do you believe in any of the negative press about agave?

Do you believe in Superfoods?
In years past, I was always on the hunt for the next best, the latest-and-greatest, find.  Sure, I’ll take a side of gogi berries with a sprinkling of acai powder and raw cocoa nibs blended into my chia pudding.  haha!
Now I have realized that although there are foods that are going to give us a boost against disease, heart attack, stroke, or any number of physical maladies, that when it comes right down to it, eating a plant-based, whole-foods, dietary path is awesome in and of itself, and if some “superfoods” like Maca and Chia Seeds, get thrown in, even better.  But if you don’t have access to the more exotic superfoods and eat apples and oranges and leafy greens, that’s probably just fine, too.  I think this quote I read here sums it up nicely: “Every superfood is going to be a ‘real’ (unprocessed) food,” Somer points out. “You don’t find fortified potato chips in the superfood category.” Amen!  
My 2 cents of course…
Tell me what you think about Superfoods and whether you go out of your way to source exotic foodie finds?  Do you hop on the latest food craze bandwagon?  Or hop on “Foods in the ‘Sphere” you saw?  Has this been a good thing?

Stay Tuned For A Nutty Give Away…

 

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