We’ve almost made it through the week, and that’s great because who doesn’t love the weekend!  Especially Superbowl Weekend!  Not that I even know who’s playing or care, but there’s something about gathering ’round with friends and eating really bad appetizers and unhealthy food that’s just so fun!  Kidding!!!!  On Sunday I will be relishing the silence:  Scott will be watching the game at a sports bar and Skylar will be napping and I will have just come home from yoga.  Beautiful.  But seriously, if anyone has a great appetizer recipe that’s vegan and gluten free, something festive that’s a tried-and-true hit with folks, drop me a link to it in the comments because those kind of recipes score me brownie points with Scott

Thanks for your feedback yesterday about what you like to bring to parties to keep things a little healthier; everything from hummus to raw veggies to homemade desserts.  Thanks for the ideas!

Oh and I’m really glad you enjoyed the pictures from Skylar’s 3rd Birthday Party!

Young girl smiling in birthday hat and beaded necklace
Woman and young girl smiling in birthday hats
Young girl wearing birthday hate eating cupcake

 And the Easy Countertop Vegan Coconut Milk Kefir

Easy Countertop Vegan Coconut Milk Kefir

And the Raw Vegan Chocolate Coconut Snowballs

Raw Vegan Chocolate Coconut Snowballs in white dish

And thanks for letting me know what burning questions you’d like me to answer in an About Me type Tab.  I am thinking Q & A session type post.   Elise and Julie have both done them recently, I need to get in on the action!

And I loved all your awesome comments on my Oats Post!
Everything from Bowls of Oatmeal

Brown Sugar & Cinnamon Raisin Oats up close in bowl

Creamy, coconutty, mango-ey, chia-ey action.  Tyrah already made it!

Overnight Chia Seed-Coconut-Mango Soaked Oats in green bowl

 to Raw Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls which contain Oats

Raw Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls stacked in container
Close up of two Raw Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Balls in container

to Raw Vegan Apple Crumble which contains Oats.

Raw Vegan Apple Crumble in clear container
Side view of Raw Vegan Apple Crumble in clear container

I know Bloggers love to Get Our Oats on with Oat-Based EatsGlad you enjoyed all the recipes!

Raw Vegan Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Cookies on dehydrator tray
Vegan Gluten Free Pancakes topped with syrup, butter and blueberries

And the discussion and info I provided about Oats being gluten-free but usually cross-contaminated in milling & production, if you missed the GF discussion, check it out but glad that so many of you found that helpful!

Moving on…
On Skylar’s actual birthday, which was Tuesday, February 2, I took my freshly minted 3-year old to paint some pottery!

Various ceramics at pottery shop

When I asked her what Colors She Wanted to Use…

Various paint colors stacked in container

…She was a bit stymied by all the choices!  We ended up with pink and purple, imagine that.

Little girl in painting apron holding paint brush

What item did this coffee guzzlin’ fiend I choose for the little Birthday Girl to paint?

Little girl painting a mug

A Coffee Mug, of course.

Young girl in pink painting a coffee mug

Her handy-work

Pained mug side view

And then I doctored it up just a little.  Basically, whatever paint I could slap on in 5 minutes. 

Painted mug saying Skylar's 3rd Bday

Back in the day, I used to love to paint pottery.  I also used to watch tv, shower when I wanted to, and worked earning money.  Now I just work my butt off, for free.

Overhead of various colored painted coffee mug

But seeing this grin makes it all worth it, of course!  We get to pick up the mug on Saturday, I’ll post a picture so you can see how it turned out.  Can you handle the suspense?  haha!

Little girl smiling while painting coffee mug

We came home and found my iHerb.com order waiting for me.

Various iHerb products on countertop

My Sun Warrior Raw Vegan Brown Rice Protein Powder in Chocolate.  The Vanilla is Awesome, too!

Close up of Sun Warrior Raw Vegan Brown Rice Protein Powder in Chocolate

And my Probiotics

Probiotics in pill packages
**And if you have shopping to do, Averie’s Readers use Coupon Code AVE630 to take $5 Off Your First Order at iHerb.com!!!!!!

As I have mentioned before in my Natural Supplements Post, Probiotics are So Important!   
80% of our immune system is in our gut, so if you’re gut isn’t healthy, you’re not going to be healthy.  The normal, natural flora of your gut can become out of whack from environmental pollutants, caffeine, alcohol, stress, antibiotics, other medications, you name it, so replenish it with 5 billion organisms per pill.

Supplement Facts of Probiotics

Or with fermented foods like my Homemade Countertop Easy Vegan Coconut Milk Kefir

Homemade Countertop Easy Vegan Coconut Milk Kefir in jar on countertop

Or Replenish With Probiotics. Look for Enteric Coated. That just means your stomach acid won’t destroy it and the good bacteria, all 5 billion of them, will survive til they hit your GI tract where they do their best work.

Close up of picture of probiotic pill talking about benefits

And the iHerb.com people sent a sample of these Wellness Formula Daily Defense.  I keep a stash of these of the Wellness Formula on hand because at the first sign of a cold or flu bug, they work very well.  

Wellness Formula Daily Defense with packet

I was also lucky enough to win Cooking For a Vegan Lover’s Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil Give Away!

Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil in container on countertop
Side view of Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil

Do Not Fear the Fat. 
I know Evan, Gena and Heather don’t.  Nor does Miss Vegan Thursday!

Nutritional information of Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil

If you missed my post on Coconut Oil Facts and InfoCheck This One Out.

Thanks again, Lindsay of Cooking for a Vegan Lover and Tropical Traditions!

Close up of label on container of Tropical Traditions Coconut Oil

Scoring points with my husband who adores potatoes Dinnertime involved dicing up some potatoes and mini carrots

Foil lined pan of diced potatoes and carrots in olive oil and seasonings

Drizzling with EVOO and a Coconut Oil combo, pepper (and salt if you wish), and a heavy sprinkling of ginger root (which is a great antimicrobial herb)

Close up of vegetables in pan

Roasting at 400F for 50 minutes, the first 30 minutes covered with foil, the last 20 minutes, flipped the veggies over and roasted them, uncovered.

Vegetables in pan after being roasted

And Voila

Close up of roasted vegetables

Plated the roasted veggies with Mixed Greens, Tomatoes, Carrots, & Cukes

Mixed greens and vegetable salad with dressing served with roasted vegetables

And dressed it with homemade Vegan Slaw Dressing

Homemade Vegan Slaw Dressing in Jar
Salad with Vegan Slaw Dressing and Roasted Vegetables

The roasted veggies were slightly crunchy on the outside but tender & soft on the inside.  Good stuff and I scored with Scott!
And Skylar!

Close up of young girl smiling in kitchenYoung girl in kitchen with hands behind head
Young girl in kitchen holding onto countertop

 

I tore into another bowl of Greenery:  Brock, Sugar Snap Peas, Cukes, Tomatoes, Mixed Greens and homemade Vegan Slaw Dressing

Salad topped with Homemade Vegan Slaw Dressing

Dessert was a Raw Vegan Chocolate Coconut Snowball for Scott

Raw Vegan Chocolate Coconut Snowball in white dish

And a few Vegan White Chocolate Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cups for me!

Vegan White Chocolate Chocolate-Peanut Butter Cup split in half on paper liner
Close up of Dark and White Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup on brown plate
Dark and White Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup split in half showing center

And Skylar wanted a few of the Raw Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies we made yesterday!

Raw Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookies topped with raisins

No icky ingredients, and no waiting around for them to bake…they’re ready in 5 minutes.  As soon as you can get them out of the food processor or Vita!

 Close up of one Raw Vegan Oatmeal Raisin Cookie

Get ’em started young on the good kind of cookies!

Young girl in pink standing and smiling in kitchen

Yoga Today is The Splits!  A wonderful hip opener and way to stretch our your hamstrings, quads, and hip flexors.  Some of you run and your hamstrings are tight from overuse, and some of you sit at your desk or at your job you’re sitting alot and so your hamstrings and back is tight from that.  Try the splits to loosen it all up!  Baby steps, don’t force it.  Keep practicing & holding your version of the splits for a few minutes every day and I bet in 30-60 days you’ll be on the ground, but you need to be consistent.  Like everything in life, consistency is the name of the game!

Hanumanasana (Monkey Pose, or the full splits).

Woman doing Hanumanasana yoga pose

And Utthita Hasta Padangustasana, (The Standing Splits)

Woman doing Utthita Hasta Padangustasana yoga pose

Tip of the Day: Because we’re still in cold and flu season, I wanted to mention what I do at the First Sign of a Cold, Cough, Flu-Bug, or Sickness.  
I recommend the following:
Starting or Upping Your Probiotic Dosage (2x/your usual)
Herbs such as Echinachea, Goldenseal, Slippery Elm Bark, Licorice Root.  For these herbs, check out your local health food store if you need them right away, or WF’s (but they are really expensive there) so try to order online if you can.
Vitamin C
Cooking with Cinnamon, Ginger, Cumin, Garlic, Onion.  They are all antimicrobial!  In order for these to be maximally effective, use generously and liberally.
Colloidal Silver
TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine and herbs that a TCM doctor or herbalist prescribes for your specific condition)
Accupuncture
Massage
Extra vigilance with handwashing
Rest
Increase Your Fluids

There are so many online sites to choose from with holistic and natural remedies information, but here was one I just came across.   Kris recently posted about her raw smoothie monsters to blast her germs away!


Questions:

What do You Do when you’re feeling a cold or sickness coming on?  Do you believe in the power of natural remedies?  Why or why not?  For me, I treat everything naturally first and 95% of the time, that’s enough.  With a good, clean diet, our immune systems are already strong and powerful, and in conjunction with common sense like rest and fluids and natural remedies, most things resolve themselves in a few days or a week.  However, I am not opposed to bringing in the big guns and western medicine if the situation warrants it, of course common sense must prevail.  How do you treat your health challenges?  Herbs and natural remedies, traditional western medicine all the way, or just do nothing and cross your fingers and hope you get better!

Have you tried Coconut Oil?  What’s your verdict on it?  I confess I didn’t always love it because I was buying inferior brands and the flavor was always meh, but in the past few years, I have upped my game on what brands I choose, and now I am hooked on it!


Still taking Reader Questions for an About Me Post.  Random Questions like Which Housewife is my Favorite are totally fine!

Stay Tuned For Shopping Finds and Cool New Products…

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