I had a hankering the other day to make some granola largely because 1) it’s a quick and nutritious* snack and 2) it utilizes a bunch of ingredients already present in my pantry. The only downside of granola is that most varieties are tasty because they are loaded with hidden sugars and fats. I was determined to make a lowfat version that I could enjoy guilt free. After a quick and easy internet search, I created a modified recipe using what I had on hand and went to work.
- 2 ½ quarts of rolled oats (basically the whole container)
- ¾ cup firmly packed brown sugar
- ¼ cup safflower oil
- ¼ cup light agave nectar
- 2 tsp. vanilla extract
- 1 cup chopped prunes (you can substitute another dried fruit if you prefer)
- 1 cup chopped almonds (or cranberries, raisons, or other nut)
- 2 tbsp. white sesame seeds
- 2 tbsp. chopped crystallized ginger
- 2 10 x 15 casserole pans
- Wooden spoon for stirring
- 1 quart saucepan
Pre-heat oven to 350. Divide your oats between your two casserole dishes. With your hands, crumble the brown sugar over top of the oats and mix in well. Mix your oil, agave, and vanilla in your saucepan over medium heat until bubbly. Pour half of mixture over the oats in your casserole dishes and mix well.
Bake, uncovered at 350 degrees for 10 minutes, after which you stir mixture and then bake another 10 minutes. Stir dried fruit(s), almonds, and sesame seeds into mixture eliminating any lumps/clumps.
Return to oven and bake for another 10-15 minutes, until oats are browned as desired. Remove from oven and let cool for 5 minutes. Stir again and enjoy! (keeps for up to 1 month in a airtight container)
I enjoyed my fresh granola this morning with a side of yogurt and sliced nectarine…yum!
Every year I have the best intentions of tending an awesome garden, this summer being no exception. After a few weeks of watering, weeding and caring for my plot, however, I tend to become absentminded about it’s upkeep. I suppose this strategy is working because I just picked my first green bell peppers and yellow long-necked squash from my patch. They tasted just as delicious as they looked!
This past weekend was about as awesome as it could be, featuring a girl’s night out with Jasmine and soaking up the sunshine at High Rock Lake. Of course, all play time must come to an end and by Sunday afternoon I had two choices: 1) I could lay down for a nap and recoop from the weekend buzz or 2) I could start in on some house projects. And what, ladies and gentlemen, do you think I chose? Option 2 of course!
My MIL keeps the lake house stocked with awesome decorating magazines, courtesy of her own subscriptions and those of her Canadian friends who visit regularly. Given that I was perusing these glossies and awed by the awesome room designs featured, is it really a surprise I was in the mood to paint? I think not. The target of my attempts was the living room. This room bothers me primarily because it doesn’t function as a room, it more or less serves as a passthrough to the home office.
My first step in modifying this room to make it useful was to add a little drama using paint. I headed on over to Sherwin Williams the second I returned from the lake, using my 30% off coupon to pick up a gallon of paint and supplies. In no time flat, I had my accent wall taped off and the first coat on. By day’s end, the paint was dry, furniture was moved, pictures re-hung and the living room began to take shape.
I would still like to have the yellow club chairs recovered and make new drapes, but that will happen in due time.
I do realize that by beginning down the pathway of changing this room, I have only succeeded to make more work for myself. Regardless, it’s work worth doing in my opinion. As proof, we’ve already used this room more in the last two days than we had in the previous month! And the cost so far? Only $40.
Let the firecrackers flare! Hoist the flag! A very special day is approaching: Roscoe’s 4th birthday. Thanks to the input of several friends, we have finally decided when and where the celebration of our Little Man’s special day will take place. High Point happens to have a skating rink on main that is very ’70′s, making me nostalgic for the skating rink I used to go to as a kid. (Any one remember Joe’s rink on 27th, N. Myrtle Beach, S.C.?) Anyhoo, as we begin prepping for Roscoe’s party at least one thing can be checked off the list. Here’s the invite I whipped up this morning. (FYI: the privacy box was added since it lists my mobile #; it is not part of the actual design)
This past weekend was our maiden voyage in the ’79 VW Westfalia Camper we recently purchased and rehabbed- Destination: Dan Nichols Park in Salisbury, North Carolina. We haven’t been camping since Aaron sold his homemade Tear Drop trailer several years ago, hence we were quite excited by spending a few days in the great outdoors. Making this weekend getaway even better was the company of friends who provided good conversation, yummy meals, and all the camping gear necessary to have an awesome stay. Instead of rambling on about all the fun I’ll just provide a pictorial review. Enjoy!
The Camper with it’s Pop-Up Extended
The Cooper’s Pop-Up
Random Shots of the Campground