TGIF in a major way for me!  I don’t know why, but this has been one of those insane weeks where I feel like I am in fifth gear every single waking second without a moment to just stop and smell the roses.  However, the weekend’s here and let the rose smelling time begin! 

Today I have been beyond busy and insanity has prevailed as I went on a major Target run, and today was grocery run time, again.  Remember how I mentioned I am forever running to the grocery store to replenish our fresh produce?  Well, I went again today, 72 hours since I was last thereI reloaded our fresh produce stash and it was time to come home and get clean sheets on the beds, get everything unpacked and unloaded, while singing Barney Showtunes or my ABCs with Skylar at my side. 

I realize that many of you young things are kicking off your spring break now!  Wow, the memories.  Spring Break for meant Cancun, margaritas, crazy clubbing, staying out til 6am, and sleeping it off poolside the next day.  Fast forward a decade (and then some) and the biggest excitement I have had this week was not a cute cabana boy….it was getting one of my recipes published by Tropical TraditionsThanks to Pam who tipped me off before I even knew it!
  Vegan Gluten-Free Pancakes
My original recipe for my Vegan Gluten-Free Pancakes is Here and there’s step-by-step photo instructions.  I am proud of this recipe because Vegan and GF pancake recipes that are edible taste great are hard to come by so I created my own! haha! 

Vegan Gluten-Free Pancakes
Vegan Gluten-Free Pancakes

The thing about being a vegan with food allergies and intolerances is that I’ve had to get creative…necessity is truly the mother of invention!

And I’ve been creating and sharing my recipes with NuNaturals for awhile now.  Here’s a link to my Chia Seed Pudding on Their Site, and on My Site.   

Chia Seed Pudding
 Chia Seed Pudding

 

Chia Seed Pudding
 

And my Vegan Gluten & Soy Free Granola Recipe is going to be posted on the NuNaturals Site soon, too!

Vegan Gluten & Soy Free Granola
 

I promise not to let all this fame go to my head…haha!!!

I’m so grateful you enjoyed my Product Review Post Yesterday…
On everything from Coconut Oil Hair Treatment

Coconut Oil Hair TreatmentCoconut Oil Hair Treatment
Skylar and Averie

To Vegan Chunks of Energy

Vegan Chunks of EnergyVegan Chunks of Energy

And Lots More!

I sometimes wonder before I post all that info if it’s useful to you guys.  Thank you so much for telling me that it’s useful and you enjoy it.  And with anything, if my opinions and thoughts regarding a product are not interesting, feel free to delete me or mark as read for that post…haha!

And I had a real smorgasbord of questions and it’s been duly noted who wants or already has a spiralizer, where your dream vacation is, and best of all, thank you for the great health & beauty and personal care product recommendations!   If you’re curious you can always read through the comments but for drugstore brands: Garnier Fructis, Herbal Essences, and Pantene kept being mentioned.  I loved the info and if anyone hasn’t chimed in with your faves, holla please!

Caronae told me that she likes the Herbal Essences for Long Hair and being that it was on sale for 2.99 each, and they were biggie sizes with 40% more free size in both the shampoo and conditioner, I decided to pick up the pair for 6 bucks.   Probably not PureOlogy, but hey, the price is right!

Herbal Essences for Long Hair
 

I was overwhelmed with the amount of Pantene Products…do you all like the “original” versions because it looks like they make a “natural”-inspired one too...info please!

Reader Michelle told me she loves this bar and anything that can get me off my $30 a bottle of Lancome, I’m up for.  $2.87 at Target.  Cool!  I’ll let you know how it works!

Aveeno moisturizing bar

Has anyone ever tried Target’s Organic Coffee?  It was a sale find, $6 bucks for 12 oz which is about what I pay at TJ’s for my organic fair trade coffee, so I figured, what the heck.  

Target's Organic Coffee
 

Ok so you asked for it, here’s more product info and I promise to hold off after today’s loot for awhile on this
First Up
18 Rabbits

18 Rabbits bars

Note the uber-cute rabbits stamped on the outside of the packaging envelope. Even if the bars were less than stellar, that alone was a detail I loved…

18 Rabbits packaging
 

But the bars are great!  Katie and Sophia have mentioned these recently and their appreciation for them, and I’m the same: Good Stuff 18 Rabbits! 

18 Rabbits bars

Some of you may remember my Vegan Bananas Foster Recipe?

Vegan Bananas Foster Recipe

Well the 18 Rabbits Belle Bananas Foster wasn’t quite Vegan Bananas Foster, but it was banana-flavored without tasting fake.

18 Rabbits Belle Bananas Foster bar
There is nothing worse to me than “imitation banana flavor”Thankfully this bar was far from fake tasting and was flavorful and not overly sweet.  Chewy, but not a mouthful.  Nice!

The Cheeky Cherry Chocolate Bar

Cheeky Cherry Chocolate Bar

…was a little like eating a bar form of my Raw Vegan Dark Chocolate Cherry Balls and it was good but I do love my Balls as you know.

 
Raw Vegan Dark Chocolate Cherry Balls 
 

Thanks 18 Rabbits for the bars!  Two Bunny Ears up On These!  Check them out, their philosophy is pure simple food, and it’s kosher, and organic!

18 Rabbits bars

Next up
Bora Bora Foods Bar.  I have reviewed these in the past and I actually snagged this bar by entering a contest of theirs, but if you sign up for their Newsletter, you may be able to snag some samples in the future.

Bora Bora Foods Bar
Bora Bora Foods Bar

Tastes great, non-GMO, Vegan, just not readily available in most stores.

Bora Bora Foods Bar
Bora Bora Foods Bar
Thanks Bora Bora!

Next Up
The people at Snubbr sent me RawVolution by Matt Amsden

RawVolution by Matt Amsden cookbook

It has Great Raw Vegan Recipes & Pics like Nori Wraps

RawVolution by Matt Amsden cookbook

Mango Chutney

Mango Chutney

Spiralized Food

Spiralized Food

p.s. for the Info about What Spiralizer I Have, Click Here.

Spiralizer
 
It’s $28.99 and is some of the best money you’ll spend!  Spiralizer Details Click Here

Pics of Dessert Balls

Pics of Dessert Balls

..hey wait, I have Ball Recipes, too..haha!

 Pics of Dessert Balls
Pics of Dessert Balls

RawVolution is really an inspirational book with beautiful pics and it fits right in next to some of my other favorite raw and vegan cookbooks! 

RAWvolution cookbook
cookbooks
 
Thanks, Snubbr!

Next Up
NuNaturals Stevia

NuNaturals Stevia

I Cannot Live Without the Vanilla Stevia Drops

Vanilla Stevia Drops

Or Without the Alcohol Free Stevia Drops, either!

Alcohol Free Stevia Drops

And the White Stevia Powder

White Stevia Powder

And the Baking Blend for my Vegan Gluten & Soy Free Granola Recipe

Baking Blend
Vegan Gluten & Soy Free Granola

 …Stevia has become a total Staple for Me!  Of all the Stevia I have tried, NuNaturals is my favorite because it is the least bitter with no aftertasteNow, if you use too much of it, it will get a little funky tasting on you, but this stevia is really high quality so you really only need just a tiny bit! 

I use NuNaturals in Everything from my overnight Chocolate Brownie Protein Oats

Chocolate Brownie Protein Oats

To my Raw Vegan Banana Bourbon Vanilla Softserve for a Touch of Extra Sweetness!

 vanilla extract
Raw Vegan Banana Bourbon Vanilla Softserve
 

…To The Popcorn I make! 

Popcorn Toppings

Popcorn Toppings

Nooch

Nooch

Stevia

Stevia

I make the Popcorn using my Super Fast, Easy & Healthy Way
Then added the cooking spray, and the added Nooch, Cinny, 1 packet of Stevia, and Stirred.   
Click Here for my Super Easy & Healthy Cooking Method 

Popcorn
 
 Popcorn

Maca

Maca on popcorn
The Maca sticks to the coconut oil and tastes sooo good!
 

Finishing Touch: Chocolate Chips!

Chocolate chip popcorn

Green Food Included: Mixed Spring Greens, Sugar Snap Peas, Tomatoes, Cukes, and Brussels (I steam those for 45-60 seconds in 1 inch of water in the micro and they are still pretty raw and crunchy, which is how I like them).

Mixed Spring Greens, Sugar Snap Peas, Tomatoes, Cukes, and Brussels

Dressed with Maple Ginger Dijon Vinaigrette

Maple Ginger Dijon Vinaigrette
 
There’s something about the flavor of the maple and dijon with the raw veggies that works wonderfully well for me.
Maple Ginger Dijon Vinaigrette and veggies

Dessert For Me was Nut Butter Filled Caramel Bites

Nut Butter Filled Caramel Bites

 

 

Scott had Raw Vegan Chocolate Mousse

Raw Vegan Chocolate Mousse

And No Night Would be Complete Without Vegan Homemade Coconut Oil Chocolate

Vegan Homemade Coconut Oil Chocolate
Vegan Homemade Coconut Oil Chocolate diced up in bowl

Yoga is Urdhva Dhanurasana (Full Backbend)

Woman doing Urdhva Dhanurasana yoga pose

Tip of the Day: Many of you have been asking me about where I get my protein powder (Sun Warrior), my probiotics (Jarrow), my supplements and natural food (Navitas Naturals), and my natural body care products (Jason) or my Stevia (NuNaturals)….well, iHerb.com.
*Use Code: AVE630 to save $5 Bucks off your iHerb.com order…they have thousands of awesome products and shipping is free on orders over $40.  They are soooo much cheaper than buying retail or at Whole Foods!

The Code is AVE630 to save $5

Questions
1. If you’re in school, are you going on a spring break trip?  Have you ever been on one?  Where would you like to go? And Please, Share Your Craziest Spring Break Story or Memory with Me, I’d Love to Hear It!
I used to go to Cancun on Spring Break and as I mentioned above, and ahhh, the memories.  Lots of crazy shenanigans and dancing and drunken revelry and you know what, it was awesome and it was what I was supposed to be doing back then!  Because now as a mom and a “grown up”, I look back on those times and am happy to have had them99% of the time I was super studious, extremely responsible, but Spring Break Week, was, well, what happens in Vegas Stays In Vegas!  

2. Do You Use Stevia?  What’s Your Favorite Brand?  Or, do you use other sweetners such as agave, white or brown sugar, dates, yacon syrup, maple syrup?  What have you tried?
As a cook, there are times and places where Dates work, can you saw Raw Ball Recipes But other times, brown sugar works, or agave is best, or Stevia is best.  It is very application and recipe dependent for what sweetener I use.  And I will admit to formerly using lots of Splenda and Truvia.  Does anyone use those?  In general, what’s your fave sweetener?

3. Top 3 Weekend Plans/Goals:  
(ok I’m listing more than 3…)
1. More Time With Scott and Skylar, 2. Less Computer Time, 3. More Time Outside, 4. Laugh & Smile a Ton, 5. Get some good yoga in 6. Cook Something Fabulous
What Are Your Goals or Plans for the Weekend?

4. Fave Cookbook?  Or Cookbooks You Want To Get Your Hands On?
If you look at the pics above, you’ll see my stash…I enjoy all of them!

Stay Tuned For Highlights of the Week…

P.S. Please Check out my Guest Post on Mama Pea’s blogClick Here to Check It Out! 

 

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