You know those people on Facebook who just seem to “do it all?” They are up early, like really early, starting their day with a workout, devotional, and positive thinking quote. They are successful in their work, whatever that may be, and they seem to still have time for their family and a social life. Pretty obnoxious, right?! Ha, just kidding…sort of.
Well, since having a baby, Zach and I have often wondered how in the world can we do all of the things we really want/need to do? It just doesn’t seem like there is enough time for all of it, but then we see these people who seem to have way more on their plate than we do, and they are still doing it all. I am not saying these people have perfect lives, and I know we can’t see behind the scenes. However, they do seem to know something or be doing something different to be able to juggle daily time with God, a workout regimen, quality time with their family, quality time with friends, and successful careers on top of all of that.
Unfortunately, the one thing we have noticed that these people have in common is that they all get up early, like in fives, like it’s still dark outside early. Yikes. We are not morning people…at all. The thought of waking up at 5am, is frankly a little terrifying. It means going to bed earlier, and the problem is, we are night people. We like to stay up and watch TV, talk, laugh…stare at our phones. But the people we feel like God is calling us to be are early risers. We need that extra two hours in the day to do all of things that will honestly just make us better, more productive people. We want to be the kind of people who get the most out of life.
We have big dreams, and we really see God doing something new, stirring out hearts, and we just want to be a part of it in whatever way He wants to use us. But to be a part of it, we need more time, which means, we have to get up in the dark.
So today was Day 1. And I have to say it’s 8am, and I have already made a new recipe (this super delicious Tropical Green Smoothie I’m sharing) spent time in the word, had some unrushed time with Zach, and worked out. I’m pretty amazed at all I could do in the 2 hours before Maverick woke up for the day at 7am. I know in a few days, the excitement will wear off and 5:30 will get really tough. The good news is we are in it together, and I’m hoping we can push each other and stick to this. I think it could be a game changer, pray for us!
As far as the smoothie recipe, I wanted to change up my typical morning smoothie. So, I made this tropical themed green smoothie today, and it was really yummy! I am such a cheerleader for smoothies in the morning. For over 2 years, we have had a smoothie almost every morning, and it has really changed my diet and helped me maintain and even lose weight. There is something about putting fruits and greens in my body first thing in the morning, it just sets me up for success in how I eat for the whole day.
So enjoy this tasty blend, and if you are an early riser, any tips on how to stick to this routine?!
Tropical Green Smoothie
Makes 2 smoothies
- 1 banana
- 1 cup baby spinach, loosely packed
- 2 cups frozen pineapple
- 1 half of an avocado
- 1/2 of a can of coconut milk (keep the other half in the fridge for the next day’s smoothie)
- 1/4 cup unsalted cashews or almonds
- 1/4 cup almond milk
Place everything in your blender and blend until smooth!
I have several variations of snacks on this blog that involve peanut butter. I just can’t help myself, it’s pretty much my favorite food, and I almost always have several jars on hand. Have you tried my 100 calorie No-Bake Cookies yet? Or how about my 5 ingredients PB Chocolate Chippers? Or my Peanut Butter Granola Bars? Okay, I’ll stop, you get the picture, I like peanut butter okay!
My latest peanut butter creation are my No Bake Peanut Butter Oat Bars. These are yummy, super easy, and full of fiber and protein, a great grab and go snack. Which is exactly what I am looking for with a 4 month old at home!
Check out the video below to see just how fast and simple these are to whip up…
No Bake Peanut Butter Oat Bars
makes 16 bars
- 1 cup natural peanut butter (no stir)
- 1/2 cup honey
- 2 tablespoons coconut oil
- 1/4 teaspoon salt (if your peanut butter does not contain salt)
- 3 1/2 cups old fashioned oats
- 1/3 cup dried cranberries (may sub chocolate chips or raisins)
- Optional: 2 tablespoons flax seeds
- Place the peanut butter, honey, coconut oil, and salt (if using) in a microwave safe bowl.
- Microwave the mixture for 1 minutes and stir everything together well.
- Now stir in the oats and chocolate chips.
- Press the mixture in 9 inch square dish lined with aluminum foil.
- Refrigerate for 30 minutes and then cut into 16 squares.
I don’t know what it is about this time of year, but it definitely brings out the “baker” in me! Lately I have been on a bread/muffin kick. Maybe it has something to do with being home with my little cutie pie most days (insert sweet picture below), or maybe it’s the cooler weather.
Either way, my latest creation turned out super tasty! I had 3 bananas sitting on the counter that were turning brown, so obviously I had to make some type of banana bread, I had no choice, right?! So, I ended up making these Double Chocolate Banana Muffins, and they are simply divine! Moist and rich without being overloaded with sugar. Also, since it is a muffin, it’s a wonderful excuse to have chocolate for breakfast!
These will not disappoint, you’ve gotta give them a try!
Double Chocolate Banana Muffins
makes 12 muffins
1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
3 very ripe bananas
1/3 cup canola oil
3/4 cup semi sweet chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and place liners in a muffin tin.
In a large bowl whisk together the flour, sugar, cocoa, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon.
In a another bowl mash the bananas with a fork until they are only slightly lumpy. Stir the oil and egg into the banana and then add this to the dry ingredients. Stir until the batter is just combined, and then fold in half of the chocolate chips.
Fill the muffin cups about 3/4 full and then sprinkle the remaining chocolate chips on top of the muffins.
Bake for 20-22 minutes, cool slightly, and enjoy!
This is a granola recipe I have been making for several years now, and I absolutely love it! You may want to make this just so your whole house will smell amazing, it’s like edible potpourri! A wonderful treat on a crisp fall day. Enjoy this granola over yogurt, ice cream, or just by the handful!
Easy Cinnamon Pecan Granola
2 cups Old Fashioned Oats
1 1/2 cup Pecans, roughly chopped
1/3 cup Oil
1/3 cup Brown Sugar
2 tbls Honey
1 tsp Vanilla
1 tsp Cinnamon
1/2 tsp Salt
1/2 Cup Raisins
Preheat the oven to 300 degrees
Heat the sugar, oil, honey, cinnamon, vanilla, and salt in a saucepan over medium heat, bring to a boil stirring often, then remove from heat.
Pour the sugar mixture over the oats and pecans, and spread it onto a sheet pan
Bake for 15 minutes, then toss and bake another 15 minutes, and then add raisins to the mixture.
Allow the granola to cool completely and enjoy!
So, I have been meaning to post this recipe for about a month now, but having a baby almost 3 weeks ago delayed it a little bit! So, the fact that I made this with my almost 3 week old at home should tell you that it’s really easy to whip up, and it’s totally worth it!
I used white whole wheat flour to make this pumpkin bread, and it’s still really moist and delicious. Of course, you could substitute regular all purpose flour in this, but I figured why not add some fiber by using whole wheat since you really can’t tell the difference. You could easily double the recipe and freeze them for a delicious breakfast when you have company over the holidays!
Pumpkin Spice Bread
1 1/2 cups white whole wheat all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
1 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup (may substitute honey)
2 large eggs
1 cup fresh or canned unsweetened pumpkin puree
1/4 cup milk
1/3 cup mini chocolate chips
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, and spray a loaf pan liberally.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, salt, ginger, and nutmeg.
In a separate bowl, cream together the butter and brown sugar. Mix in the maple syrup, eggs, pumpkin, and milk until smooth. Add the flour mixture slowly to the pumpkin mixture and mix until smooth. Then fold in the chocolate chips.
Pour the batter into the pan, and bake for 1 hour. Allow the bread to cool for 20 minutes on a cooling rack after baking, and then remove it from the pan. Allow the bread to cool for another 20 minutes before slicing.