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Friday, March 30, 2012

sweet potato veggie burgers with baked garlic and cilantro fries

if you haven't noticed, all of the new recipes that we have been trying lately have been "healthy" alternatives to some of our favorite foods.  yup, i guess you can say that both of us have been getting a little depressed about what the bathroom scale has had to say recently.  now that winter is officially over, we figured that we needed to whip ourselves back into shape!  so, in addition to all of the other delicious things that we made this past weekend, we also made sweet potato veggie burgers.  we decided to grill the veggie burgers instead of frying them in a frying pan.  they were super tasty with a few slices of fresh avocado and a whole wheat bun.  we paired our veggie burgers with baked garlic and cilantro fries too, which were a healthy alternative to deep fried fries.

hope everyone has a great weekend!
love, laurie

Thursday, March 29, 2012

low-fat chocolate fudge brownies

now, let's be honest . . . it's not often that i use a "low-fat" recipe.  i mean really, who can resist the things that make recipes so amazing, like butter and eggs for example.  so, imagine ryan's surprise when i proposed that we make low-fat brownies this past weekend.  yup, you read that right, low-fat brownies.

i recently stumbled across this brownie recipe which calls for ingredients such as greek yogurt and ground flax seeds instead of butter and eggs.  i was curious to try it out, so while we were at the grocery store this weekend we bought ground flax seeds.  the brownies actually turned out to be much better than we were expecting, and we both really enjoyed them.

certainly, no brownie recipe can replace one that uses butter and eggs, but it was a tasty alternative!  (especially since summer is right around the corner, if you know what i mean!)

love, laurie

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

smashed chickpea and avocado salad sandwiches

we absolutely love hummus and guacamole.  so, we were really excited when we found this healthy recipe which joined chickpeas and avocado together in sandwich format!  the combination of the smashed chickpeas and the avocado made for a deliciously creamy salad which was heavenly between two slices of multi-grain bread.  the fresh cilantro and the lime juice added just the right amount of zing to the sandwich too.  what's better than a yummy sandwich that is healthy for you?! 

we want to make these sandwiches again and add lettuce, tomato, and sprouts to them too.  if you enjoy chickpeas and avocado, then this sandwich is a must try!  

happy wednesday!
love, laurie

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

poppy seed pancakes

over the weekend, we made poppy seed pancakes topped with strawberries for breakfast.  we think that pancakes are one of the best ways to kick off a saturday morning!

poppy seed pancakes
prep time: 5 minutes
baking time: 10-15 minutes
yields: 7-8 pancakes

1 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup buttermilk (or milk)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon applesauce
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
1 egg
1/8 cup poppy seeds

mix all of the ingredients in a bowl until combined.  heat a lightly buttered griddle or frying pan on medium heat.  for medium sized pancakes, pour approximately 1/4 cup of batter onto the griddle or frying pan.  cook until the pancakes are golden brown on both sides.  serve hot with maple syrup.

love, laurie

Monday, March 26, 2012

over the weekend . . .

. . . we stayed up late working on lights in the theatre

. . . we did some much needed grocery shopping

. . . we tried several new recipes (which i will share this week)

. . . we rented a movie

. . . we took a walk around a local trail

we were so grateful to have a productive yet relaxing weekend.
we hope everyone had a wonderful weekend too!

happy monday!
love, laurie

Friday, March 23, 2012

fun links

{picture of us from the baby shower we attended this past weekend}

i'm so happy that friday is finally here!  i'm hoping that this weekend will be somewhat relaxing, with time for us to do some much needed grocery shopping and laundry.  since it's friday, here are a few fun links that i found around the internet recently:

an amazing cake inspired by a wedding dress.

a super quick and easy way to make whipped cream.

a clever tool for measuring your spaghetti.

a dry-erase calendar made from paint chips placed behind glass.

a very unique bike lock.

a must-have backpack for bike riders in traffic.

helpful accessory for using your iphone on cold days.

a witty twist on the classic children's book "goodnight moon."

happy friday!
love, laurie

Thursday, March 22, 2012

palsie's popcorn

when we were in north carolina this weekend, ryan's brother took us to palsie's popcorn.  this cute little store lookes like a combination of a 1950's diner, candy shoppe, soda fountain, and ice cream parlor, and they sell over 70 different flavors of gourmet popcorn.  the list of both savory and sweet popcorn flavors was overwhelming to read!  we ended up getting two different types: peppermint popcorn and caramel-cashew popcorn.  i know what you might be thinking . . . peppermint popcorn sounds weird, but it was surprisingly really good!

if you're ever in the raleigh, north carolina area, be sure to check out palsie's popcorn!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

baby shower

this weekend we drove to north carolina to visit ryan's brother and sister-in-law.  they are having a baby boy in the beginning of may, and their baby shower was on sunday afternoon.  here are a few snapshots from their shower . . .

{photos by ryan's mom}

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

birthday dinner

yesterday we spent all day in the car driving home from ryan's brother and sister-in-law's baby shower in north carolina.  since yesterday also happened to be ryan's mom's birthday we stopped at an olive garden on the way home to celebrate . . .

happy tuesday!
love, laurie

Monday, March 19, 2012

happy birthday!

happy birthday today to ryan's mom!

Friday, March 16, 2012

road trip

this weekend is ryan's brother and sister-in-law's baby shower.  so, we're hitting the road and driving from pennsylvania to raleigh, north carolina.

i'm all set and ready to go for the 11-12 hour (each way) road trip with my iphone car charger and my trail mix.  i sure hope the weather is warm down south.  north carolina, here we come!

have a great weekend!
love, laurie

. . .
photo found via pinterest

Thursday, March 15, 2012

trail mix

this weekend, we will be hitting the road and driving down to north carolina.  ryan's brother and sister-in-law live in raleigh, and they are having their baby shower on sunday.

since we will be in the car forever (11-12 hours each way) i decided to make some trail mix to munch on during the drive down and back.  trail mix is so simple to make and it is the perfect road trip snack!

trail mix
prep time: 5 minutes

honey-roasted peanuts
dried cranberries
chocolate chips
multi-grain cheerios
mini marshmallows

combine all ingredients together in a resealable bag.  shake well.

love, laurie

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

bits of happiness {by kelly}

i just love reading everyone's happy lists because it is so fun to see what is currently making everyone smile.  today's happy list was submitted by my good friend kelly!  

here are . . . 
ten things currently making kelly happy:

10. my daily calendar that has the best quotes on it 
9. catching up on bad reality tv
8. feeling like someone loves me
7. adele's beautiful voice
6. the world wide web: fashion, recipe searching, checking out new blogs
5. using icalendar to stay organized 
4. pinterest 
3. my apple products: iphone, macbook, ipad 
2. my two beautiful bernese mountain dogs: mason and bodie
1. all of my friends and family that make me happy every day

thanks for sharing kelly!
{photo of kelly snuggling with her dog mason}

. . .

what is currently making you happy?
love, laurie

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

old fashioned pancakes

weekend mornings are perfect for having fun things for breakfast,
so this past saturday we made old fashioned pancakes.

. . .

old fashioned pancakes
prep time: 5 minutes
cooking time: 10-15 minutes
yields: 10 servings

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
3 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 1/4 cups buttermilk (or milk)
1 egg
2 tablespoons melted butter

mix the flour, sugar, baking powder, milk, and egg in a bowl until combined.  mix the melted butter into the batter.  heat a lightly buttered griddle or frying pan on medium heat.  for medium sized pancakes, pour approximately 1/4 cup of batter onto the griddle or frying pan.  cook until the pancakes are golden brown on both sides.  serve hot with maple syrup.

love, laurie

Monday, March 12, 2012

my little weekend helper

over the weekend i had a ton of work to do on the computer.  so, i spent most of the day on saturday and sunday sitting at our dining room table and typing on ryan's laptop.  all weekend long i had a furry little assistant who was happy to "help" me type on the computer.  as it turns out, he is excellent at standing on the "enter" key and providing me with several pages worth of blank space!  he had a grand time laying across the keyboard and even taking a bath right on top of the computer.  that is of course, until he noticed that the neighbors were having new furniture delivered to their house.  once he spotted that excitement, he decided that he had to move onto the project of sitting on the widow ledge and supervising the whole process.  oh how i love my silly little weekend helper! 

happy monday!
love, laurie

Friday, March 9, 2012

snapshots of life lately, according to my iphone pictures

in the car on our way to meet kelly.
kitten playing in a basket.
taking homemade smoothies to work
in our reusable jamba juice tumbler.
coffee with friends.
kitten passed out on my pink fleece blanket.
a trip to the baby section of target
to buy gifts for our sister-in-law's baby shower.
hamburgers made by our friend geno.
dinner at a friend's house.

{iphone pictures via the instagram app}