Monday, April 30, 2012

april foodie penpals

If you don't know what Foodie Penpals are, they you need to stop by Lindsay's blog and learn all about it! It's the best idea since sliced bread! For more info, click here and join the fun ;)

The Lean Green Bean

My April Foodie Penpal experience was awesome! I had the lovely Gwen from SweetArt Supplies send me a package!!

It's honestly the best feeling in the world when a big box comes in the mail for you! So let's take a look at what was sent!

I always love getting new things that I've never tried before - makes it more exciting, which is exactly what this package provided. I've never tried any of the things in it, so I'm super stoked to try them!

First up was the SuperBar. Don't you already feel like a superhero?!? They look mighty delicious! Unfortunately, I haven't tried either yet, because sometimes it takes me a while to sample new things (especially when they come from awesome people!) because I'm afraid to let them go. I mean, who doesn't want this supercool package hanging around their house for a little bit longer?!

I was super excited about this one because two years ago the hubby and I lived in the Okanagan, so I thought it was kind of cool how Gwen sent me a product from there!! Yet another thing I cannot wait to try!

I just bought non-dairy cream cheese for the very first time, and I'm thinking it will go excellently on these crackers. I'm thinking that's an afternoon snack I'll jump on today!

And finally...

My personal favourite - a little touch from Gwen's own products!!! As if I didn't love baking enough before, I love it more now that I have some new liners to use!!!

Thank you soooo much Gwen for everything you sent!!!

And if you'd like to take a look at what I sent my foodie penpal, you can check it out here!

This completes my second month participating in this awesome program. Unfortunately, I'm taking the next two months off to focus on my summer courses I'm taking. But, you can count on me coming back for July, which I can't wait for!!

Seriously check into this awesome opportunity if you love food and love trying new things and sending people new things! You won't regret it!


For previous Foodie Penpals posts:

Sunday, April 29, 2012

the truths

On Friday, I had posted two truths, and three fallacies. Just to refresh your memory, this is what they looked like:

1. While running once, my shoelace came untied, and I stepped on it, and it tripped me. Luckily it was on a gravel path and no one was around.

2. I am not a huge fan of horses. They're pretty much the only animal I don't really like.

3. Before going back to school for nutrition, I obtained my first degree in English.

4. I'm allergic to macadamia nuts, but I love the smell of them.

5. My current job is wrapping chocolate, where I get to eat it while I wrap it.

Aaaaand the truths are: 2 and 5.

1. Is just completely false, but since I run, I thought I'd add a running one in!

2. I'm sorry to those out there. I'm totally not against ponies though (just horses don't really do it for me!)

3. My first degree was actually in Linguistic Cognitive Science, as I originally wanted to go through for speech therapy.

4. I'm not allergic to anything, which I'm so grateful for!

5. It's true...I get to wrap chocolate for a job, and we're encouraged to sample the products ;)


There you have it. I kinda like making these sort of things and like when other people do them too!! It makes you wonder how well you really might know someone through a computer screen!

I know it might help if I start to blog again more, which I plan on doing. For some reason lately, I haven't been taking a lot of pictures to document my life. I'm planning to start that again, because it really makes it nicer to blog, and makes it worth putting up posts!

Hope everyone had a great weekend, and enjoy this wonderful Sunday =)

Friday, April 27, 2012

friday fallacies

I am going to write 5 facts; 2 are in fact true, and 3 are fallacies. I want to know if you can see through me! Guess which ones are the fallacies!

1. While running once, my shoelace came untied, and I stepped on it, and it tripped me. Luckily it was on a gravel path and no one was around.

2. I am not a huge fan of horses. They're pretty much the only animal I don't really like.

3. Before going back to school for nutrition, I obtained my first degree in English.

4. I'm allergic to macadamia nuts, but I love the smell of them.

5. My current job is wrapping chocolate, where I get to eat it while I wrap it.


There you have it!!

I have two very true facts up there, but do you know which ones they are?

Have a great weekend!!

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

where have i been?

Absence makes the heart grow fonder, right?

I think I actually did you a favour by not blogging. My life has been so dull, apart from studying for exams. I thought I might become this big ball of excitement once I finished school, but unfortunately, the boringness pursues.

The best I can do for ya is show you a few things I got up to in these past two weeks to get you caught up and then hopefully that will set me on the right track to being fun!

First things first...snow is not cool when the month of May is almost approaching. This is what happened in my town all day yesterday. I'm not exaggerating when I say 'all day' - it really was!

The major thing that sucked about this the most? My husband now commutes to work an hour north of us and you know what the north means...even crappier conditions when snow makes an appearance. He said his drive home was pretty brutal. Happy second day of work to him!

It still continued to snow a bit today, but is leaving soon (riiiight??). I just don't get Mother Nature. We have shorts and sandals weather a month ago, and now snow in April - this global warming stuff is totally accurate!

Besides hating snow in August April, I've been...

Making fajitas for the very first time as a vegan. That means tofu, portabello mushrooms, peppers, and onions.

Accompanied by salsa - this is the best kind ever. No exaggeration:

And, tried for the first time: non-dairy sour cream. It just so happened to be 50% off, which sealed the deal of getting it. Otherwise, I don't think I would of gotten it and fajitas would have just been eaten with salsa!

Sour cream was ok - it kind of had a sweet hint to it. It definitely isn't regular sour cream, I'll tell you that much! But for what I now want to eat, it did the trick!

I also tried banana soft serve for the first time. Who am I?! And why had I not tried it sooner?!

Only problem is you need a ton of bananas ALL the time! But it's worth it ;)

I've also been cutting my hubby's hair. He's got a lot of hair!

And also, as part of studying for finals, I totally slacked on making meals. This was one of the delicious ones I enjoyed during studying...

I am loving miso soup right now. So delicious!!

And there you have it. That's where I've been. Hopefully I have some new and actually interesting things to come.

QUESTION: What are YOU doing that's more exciting than me?! Please tell me it's something!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

bringing back breakfast + important things to note

Call me crazy (actually, please don't!), but I brought back an old breakfast favourite. I don't know where it disappeared to for the last few months (probably somewhere behind all the pancakes I was eating!), but it finally made a comeback. Toast with PB&J.

Just as good as I remembered! Don't ever leave me for that long again...unless your name is pancakes and you have another litre of maple syrup to provide us with because we mysteriously already devoured the one my mom gave us a week ago.

Ok so, not a litre, but still a decent amount that could probably last a family of 4 a month, yet it lasted this family of 2...6 days. Make that 5.

This is also a good time to let you guys in on some important things that I have to note. Pay attention because they may come in handy someday.

#1: always be careful, not to fill your tea mug too full so that when you walk, it spills all over you, and you end up a burn victim.

This was after the down-the-hall spillage...hence the cm space in the mug now. Speaking of cm's, yes that's my calculated AND the periodic table featured in this pic. You must be super jealous of the things I do in a day ;)

#2: your frying pan should always look like this:

I don't care how many times the veggies fall out as you try to stir it, you should always have a frying pan that's overflowing with them. Plus, kale wilts down so much that it's like you never put any in!

#3: I drink water like I've been in the Sahara for 5 years, and you should too.

I drink at least one of those canisters everyday (it holds 1182mL), along with water upon waking and with everything in between. I'd like to say that my bladder is as solid as that water bottle, but unfortunately it's not! And don't drink a lot before bed like me. But if you do, let's compare times for when we get up to go to the bathroom in the middle of the night - mine's hanging around 1-2am right now!

#4: make your own gnocchi.

It totally beats the stuff you buy in the fridge section at the grocery store. If I knew that my first attempt at making gnocchi would turn out fabulous, I would have tried sooner. Looking at this picture makes me want to make more right now. Just don't share any with your husband because he'll eat it all on you, and then your hard work goes to waste. When he asks what you're making, say, "what gnocchi?! I don't see any!"

And there you have it...very important things, clearly.

Time to get back to studying chemistry - my least favourite thing about 'important things to note.'

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

do you remember...

I'm not sure if this company is Canada-specific (but I'm assuming it is because the name of the company is "Canada Pure"), but does anyone remember these drinks?!

They used to come in glass bottles that were this blue colour, but unfortunately now they come in plastic, and I haven't seen them in ages. I know they're not the best for you, but I couldn't help but grab one! I remembered black cherry being good, and yup, that still stands!

The fizzinest + the black cherry is exactly what I needed to help me get through some more studying ;)

I located this marvelous drink at The Bulk Barn (yet another Canadian company) in my town which recently expanded, and probably why I've never seen the drink there before. I absolutely love the Bulk Barn to begin with, but seeing as they just reopened, they had some stellar prices on things that I went for anyways. Can you say 50% off organic natural peanut butter?! (note the size of the jar I got - clearly the biggest size they had!)

Normally when it's 20% off, I jump at the opportunity to buy the biggest container of it, but 50% off grand opening sale totally dominates.

Also, since they expanded, this gave them more room to introduce new products like...

Almonds! Kidding...they weren't that small that they didn't have room for almonds before! But, I did notice that they now carry wheatberries, so I made sure to grab some of them! The reason I did grab almonds though, was they were also on the 50% off grand opening sale. Are you getting the sense now that I love Bulk Barn?!

Ok, one last thing - I promise! Another thing that gets me in the store each time, is they're always constantly offering $3 off coupons (when you spend $10) in the newspaper. My mom brought over one of the clippings today, so I figured I better go use it, just for good measure :) It's always nice when $14.46 turns into $11.46.

The only thing I had left to do once I got these baggies home (and you don't even wanna know how bad my Bulk Barn baggie collection is getting!) was to transfer them to some lovely jars.

If I can at least take 2 things out of baggies, it means I'll take less time finding the 30 other things still existing in the bags! Plus, how could you not get those wheatberries straight to a jar?!

I have another $3 off coupon I have to use by Thursday, so I'm taking food suggestions starting...NOW!

QUESTION: What's your favourite item to purchase in bulk?!

Monday, April 09, 2012

smoothie crisis avoided + lots of studying

Ok, so I try to pretend like some of the things the husband does, doesn't bother me...and by that I mean, I don't try at all. I think he's learning to adapt ;)

So, when it came to, oh about an hour ago, when I wanted to make a delicious, healthful smoothie, there was one thing missing. And by one, I mean three things - all three cups for our magic bullet.

What does the husband have to do with this? He makes a smoothie every morning and brings it to work...and leaves the cups there. It makes it pretty hard to use the magic bullet with 1/2 of it missing!

I didn't give up (well, I almost did), and finally went the alternate route.

The inverse-mason-jar-on-a-blender route! Works like a charm every time!

In the mix today:

  • 1 orange Kiju drinking box
  • handful of frozen strawberries 
  • small handful of frozen raspberries
  • 1/2 scoop sunwarrior warrior blend protein (vanilla)
  • handful of spinach

If you're ever in a pickle, definitely do this!

I'll normally only use the mason jar if I'm having a ginormous smoothie, so that's why it looks so empty above!

Unfortunately the smoothie's finished now, but my studying isn't.

I have my first exam tomorrow and write my last one on the 20th. This will be a very dull and over-loaded week and a half for me.

I've been studying all morning and afternoon for my exam tomorrow morning (ummm, who seriously schedules exams at 8:30am?!?!); doing a few problems and reading through the information again, I think I'll do fine!

I'm soooo over school. Good thing I start again come May 10th for 3 summer courses. What the heck was I thinking?

Thursday, April 05, 2012

i might be addicted to...

Maple syrup. But only the good kind. Aunt Jemima doesn't count.

Weird thing is, growing up I hated real syrup. I'm surprised my parents didn't disown me for that. If it continued, I might have disowned myself!

I'm glad I overcame that horrible, horrible period of time, because now I can't get enough.

Especially when I go over to my mom's house, see a huge gallon of it in her fridge, and have her offer to give me some. You don't ever turn down that offer. You take it home and add it to the next thing you might be addicted to...


I'm always on the hunt for the perfect, fluffy pancake recipe. I might have found it. I love Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, and enjoyed her pancake recipe, but this one I used this morning, made extra fluffy pancakes.


  • 1 cup flour (I used wholewheat)
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 1.75 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • half a banana, mashed
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup non-dairy milk (I used unsweetened almond, but only had 2/3 cup left)
  1. In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients (flour, sugar, baking powder and salt).
  2. In a small bowl, mash banana and combine with milk and vanilla extract
  3. Preheat frying pan to med-high and add some oil, cook pancakes for a few minutes per side.
I'm sure if I had the right amount of milk that went into the recipe, they wouldn't have turned out as fluffly. But I'm glad I ran out of almond milk. I love me some thick, fluffy pancakes!

And you cannot forget a third and final thing that I might be addicted to...

Peanut butter. Especially on pancakes.

My kinda new fav breakfast. I was on a toast kick for a loooooooong time. I don't know when exactly that changed, but now I'm just your average person jumping from breakfast to breakfast each morning...unless I had a man servant (read: the husband) to make pancakes each morning. Then yes, I'd probably stay on this pancake kick for a while.

My butt may not like it though, so, I'll have these bad boys in moderation ;) haha

And there you have it...I actually might be addicted to the above three foods and I'm not ashamed. I clearly love my breakfast items!

QUESTION: What foods/drinks are YOU addicted to?!

Wednesday, April 04, 2012

recycled recipe: easy amazing granola

My guess is that if you never visited my other blog before I created this one, then this recipe might not seem so recycled after all! But it's totally being recycled, because this granola needs a reappearance in general, and an appearance on here! It's too good to stay out of the limelight for as long as it has!

Easy Amazing Granola

by Char
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 20 - 25 mins

Ingredients (~4 cups)

  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened shredded coconut
  • 1/4 cup sunflower seeds
  • 1/4 cup sesame seeds
  • 1/4 cup pumpkin [pepita] seeds
  • 1/2 cup almonds
  • 1/4 cup walnuts
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (I used just under 1/4 because I’m not a fan of using oils to bake/cook)
Add-in’s after bake time:
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1.5 tbsp hemp seeds
1. Preheat oven to 400F.
2. Combine all your dry ingredients in a large bowl.
3. Place coconut oil in a small bowl, microwave to liquify, then add maple syrup and mix.
4. Add wet to dry ingredients and combine.
5. Place mixture on a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper.
6. Bake for 20-25 mins. Stirring mixture once, halfway through.
Powered by Recipage
 So easy and delicious that you’ll forget you were the one who made it.
Look at the transformation:
I usually enjoy granola with almond milk, but it's also good on its own or in yogurt (coconut milk yogurt to be exact)!

Or, you could also add some…
Crispy Apple Slices

by Char
Prep Time: 5 mins
Cook Time: 40 - 45 mins

Ingredients (~1 cup)
  • One apple (I used organic fuji)
  • 1/8 cup agave nectar
  • sprinkles of cinnamon
1. Preheat oven to 400F.
2. De-core and thinly slice apple.
3. In a small bowl mix apple slices with agave nectar.
4. Place on baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
5. Sprinkle slices with cinnamon (according to your liking).
6. Bake for 40-45 mins. Make sure you check on them frequently – change from looking undercooked to brown very quickly (mine were more on the brown/overcooked side).
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The end result:
The apple will come out nice and crispy. The cool part about them was while they were still hot, they would feel like they weren’t crispy, but once you put them in your mouth, they would immediately crispify (new word?). Crumble these bad boys up and add them to your granola.
Does granola ever get old? Or is it just me. Either way, eat this granola. Or make your own variation. I really don't think you can screw up granola...having said that, don't hold me accountable if you screw up granola.

Have a great Wednesday - I will be attended my last classes of the semester today!

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

my little pony

I can't help but anxiously wait for the two second window on my drive to school where I pass the cutest ponies ever.

It's hard to not 'aww' out loud, and for that reason, I do it every single time.

If I could guiltlessly steal an animal (or two of this particular kind of animal, for that matter) without any concern for anyone or anything else, it would be these ponies. I think they would fit lovely in my townhouse.

I don't know what it is about them, but they melt my heart. I'm not a horse lover, but I'm definitely a pony lover. They had me at...miniature.

After all my awwwing, I decided to finally bring my camera to have proof that I'm not just making them up to my husband or friend (thanks for putting up with all the pony talk you two!)

There you have it, my little pony. Don't lie to me and say you're not awwing...I know you are! Until we meet again ponies, until we meet again!

QUESTION: What's the cutest animal you've seen lately?

Monday, April 02, 2012

the beginning of the end

I officially have only one day left of classes - that being Wednesday. After that, it's all *eek* exams. My first exam starts next Tuesday, and my last one ends on April 20th - so a 10 day stretch.

The thought about being done the semester is a good thing...until you remember you have an exam to accompany that semester you just completed. Sometimes I fear that I haven't started studying soon enough, or took the time throughout the semester to understand the material, but none of that can change when I write my exam! Hopefully for next time (ie: the summer semester), I'll learn how to better prepare myself.

There you have it, my friends. It's the beginning of the end...and I cannot wait!