Smoothie Bowl Basics

Smoothie Bowl

Does anyone else have a growing pile of papers on their desk? I think it has something to do with school having started, feeling like I can’t cross off as many things on my list as I need to, and being a full-blown soccer mom for the next two months. Busy means happy for the kids though. They have a balance of school, down-time, homework, and extra activities – like most kids, they thrive on some routine. For me, all this means that I’m squeezing in food where I can. This is where knowing some smoothie bowl basics comes in handy.

This is simple people. If you are looking for something healthy, nutty, fruity, and filling = taaadaaa!! Here it is.

Here’s the super not complicated tricks to a smoothie bowl:
* make a smoothie
* pour it in a bowl
* top it with stuff
* eat it

When I make a smoothie, I like to make lots of it. I use some in that moment and pour the rest into cups that I stick in the freezer. These come in handy for my late night snacks, tomorrow’s breakfast, or maybe just 2nd breakfast. It makes a smoothie bowl even quicker if you have some prepared that you can just soften in the microwave (just make sure not to heat it, just soften).

I like to include fruit chunks in my bowl, mango and blueberries being my top choices. Banana slices will make their way there as well. I always keep frozen fruit on hand for this reason. Fresh peaches, pineapples, plums, nectarines, and kiwis would be great as well. Really, what fruit could make this go wrong? Is there any stinky ones? That would be gross. Don’t do those ones.

To give the crunch factor, I like to add sliced almonds and seeds.  I usually have sunflower and pumpkin seeds around, so that’s easy. For extra crunch, I like to add my granola or some grape nuts.

I often stop there, if it’s morning. But to be honest, if this is an evening snack there’s definitely going to be some mini chocolate chips thrown in there too.

I know I’ve talked about smoothie bowls before, but really, this is an underestimated meal/snack/get-in-my-belly-now food choice. So yah, here I am talking about it again. Cheers to green smoothies today and I hope you have a really good one!

Smoothie Bowl

And because I really believe in you and your amazingness…here’s a little reminder for the day:

magical person you are

(via my pinterest board quotes to live by)

Dynamo: Dixie

 

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THE BACK STORY: 
At the end of last summer my friends and I went to a nearby track to run intervals for an hour. We would get there at 6 am to run as quickly and efficiently as we could. The first time we went I was surprised to see an older woman running around the track. What was even more surprising was that she was there every time we went. I admired her dedication and drive but never talked to her.

It’s been a year and I am on the track again and she’s still there! I’ve thought of her when I’ve exercised. In her consistency, she’s discovered the key to longevity, her fountain of youth. She is a dynamo, a source of energy and inspiration for me. The daily effort we give makes up a whole life of worthy work. She is the perfect example. Last week, I decided I wanted to know her story.

I was running by myself and as I finished one of my speed laps, I ran up beside her. She was quite surprised to have me run along with her and we were both puffing from our efforts. I introduced myself and told her how amazing I thought she was and asked her if she’d be interested in allowing me to take some pictures of her and ask her a couple questions. “So long as it’s not too personal,” she said. I jumped at the chance and said I’d be there the next morning before she finished her run.

The following morning I arrived mid-run, took some pictures, and got ready to take notes. As she finished her run and wiped her brow, we walked a mile on the track together. Her name is Dixie, she’s a grandma, she’s a runner, and she’s been running the track every day for 35 years.

Dixie’s story is the first of a new theme for Carrot Bowl. I want to capture normal people who don’t even know they’re inspirational. I think every person inspires other people in ways they don’t understand or even want to recognize. That inspiration is empowering for others and themselves. I believe in the good of every person and I believe that this and stories to follow can change our outlook, our dedication, and our perception of the people around us.

Carrot Bowl is going to have a community of Dyanmos and Dixie is the beginning. With that, here’s my first Dynamo, my first power-house, I introduce Dynamo: Dixie.
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

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Can you tell me your story?

In October 1979 my sister and my sister-in-law and I decided to go walking. We went up to JB Thomas track and we decided to run a little ways and then walk, then run, then walk until we could work up. So we gradually worked up till we got to three miles, we could run three miles. In the meantime my sister, she gave up and then my sister-in-law gave up, and then it was just me! So then I worked up to five miles and this was ‘79. I went five miles for years and years and years until this last January/February my feet were hurting so bad that I started doing four miles and that seems to be better for my feet for some reason.

Have you always run on the track?

First is was JB Thomas, then we came over to the rubberized track because someone told us to try this one. I don’t have any knee problems or nothing, just the bottom of my feet.

How old are you?

I was born in 1940, so I’m 74…. 

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Southwestern Patties for a Quick Dinner

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I love summer for it’s spontaneity. We can go anywhere anytime.

We are entering our last week of summer here in Portland and I have a pretty good schedule laid out for the week. I’ve decided to go out with a bang – I’m going to be a really fun mom this week; at least I’m going to try. Maybe I should be boring so they actually want to go back to school. I have one that is excited to go and one who is not. I don’t think there’s any way around that. It’s also going to be a new adventure this year because I’ll have my 3-year-old with me all day without the entertainment help of another child.

What I’ll miss: easy mornings, continuous kid crafting, not having a busy night schedule, mid-day adventures, forts all over the house

What I’m excited for: time for some hobbies, watching my kids grow, going grocery shopping with only one child, not hearing arguing throughout the day

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I also love summer for it’s fresh produce. I am seriously going to miss melons in a couple months. I think I just ate the best honeydew a couple days ago! But then honey crisp apples are coming back in, so that gives me a good reason to look forward to fall…and soups…and pumpkin flavored everything…and how my boots died the end of winter so I’ll be on the hunt for new ones.

Regardless of summer, end of summer, or new boots, I love quick meals. Meals are the best that I can make with simple prep, that are customizable, but combine lots of different flavors. This meals is one of our favorites…. 

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Veggie Eggs

Veggie Eggs

Breathe…breathe again…I need to do this more. I need to slow down and breathe and let the air flow around and from me and let myself live in that moment more. I need to appreciate that time, the gift that is today. We have today and now and I know I don’t always give the day my full attention, sometimes the list of things gets in the way. The spontaneous and fun get forgotten. This fully counts towards food too.

I’m constantly impressed with others’ creativity, but then in the quick simple moments, I might whip up something that is easy, fresh, and perfectly satisfying. These veggie eggs are one of those moments…. 

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Strawberry Salad

Sometimes salad sounds boring to me. That might sound weird since I’m kinda a veggie nerd (totally exists) and my kids could tell you the same. However, this summer I’ve experimented with some sweeter salad ingredients. This has kept me more interested and excited to eat my lunchy greens. On the menu today – strawberry salad.

Strawberry Salad

I’m a sucker for fresh berries, mangos, and melons. Every lunch I’ve been looking around my kitchen and topping whatever greens I’ve had with some sort of fruit. This strawberry salad is juicy and combines the perfect sweetness with crunch. On top of that, my other new favorite salad topping is sliced mushrooms. Seriously the perfect combo of sweet, soft, and crunchy. I’m not a huge raw mushroom fan, so this topping has been a bit surprising for me. The meatiness of the mushrooms has been awesome and I love their soft texture combined with something fruity…. 

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Raspberry Nutella S’mores Repeat + Summer Vacation

raspberry smores

Anyone else having some fun family vacations mid-summer?

The past two weeks around here we were visiting both sides of the family in Idaho and then in Montana. We were constantly on the move which made the time pass quickly and we did more fun things than we can count.

One of the important things we’re trying to teach our kids is how to enjoy every moment of our adventures, not just the “got there” part. We reminded them that all the parts of our trip were going to be fun because we were together and we were going to enjoy every moment, including the long driving. It was very much part of the trip.

For me, the driving is some of my favorite time. Not the part where I’m fetching things for the kids and entertaining, but the part where Tyler and I get to talk with unlimited time. It’s amazing how we can just go on and on and on and on and on. A lot of our conversation was about Carrot Bowl (which always makes me excited) and I have some fun things in store for the future. Hopefully sooner than later and I can’t wait to share them with you.

I’m going to count some of our vacation adventures for you, because you probably want to know:

Made these Raspberry Nutella S’mores (an amazing sometimes food that you should not pass up…and consider yourself warned that you can never go back to regular s’mores)
Went to Yellowstone National Park
Hiked in the Tetons – Hidden Falls
Saw buffalo and moose
Took family pictures twice
Swam and dinnered at a lake
Went to a rodeo where I dressed a cow with my sister and SIL (seriously a blast and I would do it again in a heartbeat)
Celebrated the 4th of July
Swam at cool swimming pools
Drove for a long long time
Hiked in Montana
Rode a carousel
Saw the movie “How to Train Your Dragon 2″
Helped the kids launch water balloons at Grandpa
Joined the kids in a sleepover
Rode a tour train
Visited my grandparents
Had a family game of wiffle ball in the mountains (so picturesque)
Made Quick Vegan Nachos for the family
Had a family white elephant gift exchange to celebrate everyone’s birthdays
Played games
Visited all my siblings homes and visit
Celebrated my Mom’s birthday early
Went bowling
Did a garage sale scavenger hunt
Saw some beautiful country

Really it was an awesome vacation. The kids were sad to leave both places. But when we got home, it helped to get back into regular things by having the two older kids signed up for day camps. It gave me a routine and helped them stay busy as they were/are reprograming from our trips.

Here’s a couple shots from our trip. Enjoy your vacations this summer and stay safe! Where is the farthest you are going?

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