Sunday, August 25, 2013

happy birthday to my brother

i can't believe my little brother is turning 30 today. 30! I know he is married and has two kids and of course he would have to get older as I get older, yet it is hard to believe that my younger brother is now 30. I am so proud of him and who he has become and I feel privileged to call him brother.

tillykke med foedselsdagen andreas!

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

wordless wednesday


Monday, August 19, 2013

milling mondays: whole wheat german chocolate cookies

As I have mentioned before, I LOVE CHOCOLATE. Dark chocolate is my favorite. When I've gone without sugar or dairy or something, chocolate is the thing I miss the most. That being said, these German Chocolate Cookies are delish. They are soft and chewy with just the right amount of chocolate. It is hard to have just one.

Whole Wheat German Chocolate Cookies
print-email-text recipe


1/4 cup butter, softened
3/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/8 tsp salt
1 egg
1tsp vanilla extract
2/3 cup whole wheat flour (2/3 soft wheat berries and 1/3 hard wheat berries)
2/3 cup rolled oats
1/4 cup ground flax seeds
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
3 oz dark baking chocolate, chopped
1/3 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
1/3 cup pecans

Preheat oven to 350F
Toast the pecans on a pan and chop.
Chop the dark chocolate.

Beat together the butter, brown sugar, baking soda, and salt.  I use my KitchenAid mixer on setting 2.

Once it is well combined, mix in the egg and vanilla.

If you mill your own flour, grind the soft and hard wheat berries. I use my WonderMill on the pastry setting. Sift the flour once to make the cookies less dense.

Beat in the flour until well combined.

Stir in the oats, ground flax seeds (in order to get the full nutritional benefits of the flax seeds, grind them right before you need them), and cocoa powder.

Finally stir in the chopped chocolate, coconut, and pecans to form a thick dough.

 Scoop the cookie dough onto the cookie sheet/baking mat.
Bake for 8-10 min until edges are firm and top is set.
Let the cookies cool on a rack ... and then they are READY TO EAT:)

Thursday, August 15, 2013

diy thursday: getting rid of coffee stains

It is super frustrating when coffee (or tea for that matter) leave stains inside mugs. Sometimes you are lucky and you can wipe it off or it comes off in the wash. Other times it has sat too long and you are stuck with this beauty (see above) and your mug no longer looks clean. Luckily, my mom taught me an old school trick of getting rid of these stains, that works every time.
Getting rid of coffee stains (and tea for that matter)
Wet the mug inside a little.
Rub salt on the stains and you will magically see them disappear.
Wash the mug, and voila, no more stains.
This is such a simple and easy trick using one ingredient that everyone has on hand.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

wordless wednesday


Monday, August 12, 2013

milling mondays: whole wheat macaroon cupcakes

These macaroon cupcakes are one of my favorites that my farmor used to make. I just love them! They have such an amazing taste with a hint of almond and the texture is perfectly chewy. YUM. And using whole wheat flour doesn't change the taste at all! I was so excited when my mom started making them after my farmor passed away. These cupcakes truly remind me of my farmor and her wonderful baked goods.
Whole Wheat Macaroon Cupcakes (Makron Kage)
125g margarine, melted
3 eggs
300g sugar
125g whole wheat flour (85g soft wheat berries and 40g hard wheat berries)
100g Italian almond flavored cookies (macaroons), crushed
1 Tsp vanilla extract
 yields 20-24 cupcakes
Preheat the oven to 395F
Whisk together the sugar and eggs using a hand mixer.
If you mill your own flour, grind your soft and hard wheat berries. I user my WonderMill on the pastry setting. Sift the flour once to make the cupcakes less dense (you may want to use a little more wheat berries in order to make up for any flour lost from sifting the flour).
Add the flour, crushed macaroons, almond extract and the margarine and blend together.
Add the batter to a lined cupcake pan.
Bake the cupcakes for about 15 minutes
Enjoy this delicious treat!

Saturday, August 10, 2013

super sweet

Anyone who really knows me, knows I love sweets ... so being off sugar this month, doesn't really make sense, does it?! But that is for another time, and for me to dream about and eat in September:)

Anyways, speaking of sweet ... my sweet friend nominated me for the Super Sweet Blogger Award. Thanks Emily, I think you are pretty sweet yourself:)

So  here are the rules for the Super Sweet Blogger award:
      • Thank the super sweet blogger who kindly nominated you for the award.
      • Answer five super sweet questions.
      • Nominate a dozen other bloggers who you think deserve the award.
      • Comment to them to let them know you nominated them.

Time for the 5 sweet questions:
      1. Cookies or cake? YES
      2. Chocolate or vanilla? Chocolate. I love chocolate. I mean, I wont discriminate if there is only vanilla, but will always be partial to dark chocolate.
      3. Favorite sweet treat? Too hard to narrow it down to a favorite, depends on my mood.
      4. When do you crave sweet things the most? When I haven't had them for a month:)
      5. If you had a sweet nick name, what would it be? My husband calls me honey sometimes, so lets go with that one?!

My super sweet nominees:
  • So can you renominate? If so, then Emily is such a hilarious blogger. I love how she writes, I tend to actually laugh out loud when reading her blogs. Glad she started blogging:) 
  • My sister-in-law Ashley of course writes about a topic I am very interested in, often featuring my sweet and adorable nephews. She is so creative and too makes me laugh out loud.
  • Allison writes about her fun and interesting adventures with real honesty. 
  • Holly is so artistic and a great writer. I always look forward to reading her blog whether it is about the latest vegan recipe or her exploration of motherhood ... and did I mention she makes amazing jewelry too?
  • Kendra is also artistic (you should check out her drawings/art), I love her incredible honesty. 
  • Molly encourages me as I read about her adorable family that God has blessed her with, giving me hope that one day too we will have a family as well.
  • Jenny writes about her amazing work in Honduras through her non-profit, the Children's Home Project.
  • I love reading my husbands blog, I think he is a good write and thinker which challenges me.
  • I also love food blogs so I will give them a shout out even though they are probably too cool for me:) ... some of my favorites are Pinch of Yum and Oh She Glows and of course you can't have a super sweet blogger nominee and not mention Chocolate Covered Katie.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

diy thursday: homemade larabars

We really like larabars. What I like about them (other than the yummy taste) is that the ingredients are simple, only a few and all pronounceable. The main ingredient, and the one that is the same for all of them regardless of flavor, is dates. I don't mind dates, but I don't ever crave them or think, hey I should have some dates?! But even though they are the main ingredient, you don't really notice them. These bars are great for special diets (assuming you can eat dates) since you can add ingredients that fit your eating habits.
In order to save money, I started making these delicious snack bars myself and the directions are simple and easy.
We have really been into cashews lately, so I will give the recipe for a cashew larabar, but the recipe can be adapted to fit other flavors.

Cashew Larabars


1/2cup raw unsalted cashews
1/2cup-1 cup pitted dates


Chop cashews in a food processor.
Set the chopped cashews aside.
Next, chop the dates in the food processor.
Using your hands, fold/knead together the cashews and dates (this may be a somewhat sticky experience). Add more chopped dates if needed to incorporate all the nuts. I have found this method to be the most effective since I don't have a super good food processor. If you have a powerful food processor you should be able to mix the nuts and dates together in the processor without using your hands.
When the nuts and dates are completely combined, press them into a pan/dish and let them cool in the fridge. 
Once it is cool, then cut the larabars into the desired size.
I also like "chocolate" larabars.  Instead of cashews, I use almonds and then also add 3Tbsp unsweetened cacao powder (and you could even add 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut)

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

wordless wednesday


Monday, August 5, 2013


Right after we got home from Florida, we headed up north in Arizona to go camping with people from Chrio.  We had a great time with friends just relaxing, laughing, enjoying cooler weather, and taking in nature.
yes, that is my husband and yes, I am happy I didn't know he was about to do that.... gotta love him!
sunday morning gathering

miling mondays: whole wheat mixed-nut shortbread

This is a fabulous shortbread dessert with a nice nutty crunch. It is the perfect little dessert.

Whole Wheat Mixed-Nut Shortbread
print-email-text recipe


1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/3 cup plus 1 Tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup whole wheat flour (2/3 soft wheat berries and 1/3 hard wheat berries)
3/4 cup salted and roasted mixed nuts (if unsalted/unroasted see below), coarsely chopped


Preheat the oven to 375F

If you don't have salted/roasted nuts simply roast your chopped mixed nuts (I used almonds, walnuts, and cashews) on a pan. Then sprinkle 1/4 tsp salt and 1 Tbsp sugar on the nuts and mix.
If you mill your own flour, grind your soft and hard wheat berries. I use my WonderMill on the pastry setting.

Mix together the butter and  1/3 cup sugar in a bowl.

Add the vanilla and then the flour until the dough comes together.

Transfer the dough to a greased baking sheet/baking mat. Spread the dough to form about an 8 inch square (as you can see on the picture, that doesn't have to be exact).

Sprinkle the dough with the nuts and gently press them into the dough and sprinkle the remaining sugar over the nuts.
Bake the shortbread for about 20-25 min until golden brown. 
Let it cool on a rack before cutting it into bars.

Friday, August 2, 2013

nothing better than a baby laughing

i just love the face and the sounds of a baby laughing. it makes my heart smile.

Thursday, August 1, 2013

diy thursday: homemade egg white mayonnaise

I made the mistake awhile back of reading the back of a mayonnaise jar. I was amazed by the amount of ingredients I couldn't pronounce. I even looked up one of them and it said it was a poison?! Yikes. We even used the healthy one with olive oil. Hmmmm. It isn't that we use a lot of mayo, but I like to have it with certain things. But the joy of mayo is lessened if it contains a poison even if there is only small traces of it and it wont kill us unless we eat massive amounts. I had wanted to make my own mayo right away, but was a little uneasy given the potential of salmonella when using raw unpasteurized eggs. Instead, I opted to purchase a more natural and more expensive one where I could actually pronounce all the ingredients.  Fast forward to last week, Michael and I are currently not eating any sugar for 30 days (what were we thinking?! and I will write more about that later). Anyways, our more natural mayo has some sugar, and I wanted to make a dish that required a couple of tablespoons of mayo. Since it is possible to buy pasteurized egg whites in a carton, I figured I should somehow be able to make mayo with egg whites only and no yoke ... and folks, it is possible! I am probably totally late to the game, but I am glad to know that now.
It is super easy and inexpensive to make and it tastes great and to make things even better, I have full control of ALL of the ingredients in the mayo.

Homemade Egg White Mayonnaise
recipe modified from In Jennie's Kitchen

1 large egg white
3 Tbsp lemon juice
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp dry mustard
1/2 cup extra light tasting olive oil (or macadamia oil or avocado oil. Use an oil which is light tasting so it doesn't compete with the taste of the mayo)

Add the ingredients to a blender in the EXACT order listed above. Let it settle for a couple of minutes.

Blend all the ingredients together until it becomes the consistency of mayo.

Scoop the mayo into a container and refrigerate it. And it is ready to use.

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