I did it!

I graduated from high school.
I got my diploma.
And to my surprise I had a little star next to my name indicating "with honors" in the graduation program.

I realized that I should be proud of myself. I made it through with flying colors. Graduating is a commendable thing and I did it!

It was almost two weeks ago and it still has not hit me that it is all over with. My mind has been enveloped in the sweetness of summer time, which is a quite lovely thing.

I'm working at the cutest little bakery ever, grilling veggies like its my job, exercising because it feels good (hot yoga is my new favorite thing), reading this awesome book, and trying to just fully embrace this season of my life.


the last times...

They say "all good things come to an end" but, I am not sure that I'm convinced.

In the past month I have done a lot of things for the last time.
I went to the last day of high school. I played my last lacrosse game. I wore my school's uniform for the last time. I went to our last All-School Closing chapel service.
And that is just the beginning of "the lasts".

A lot about my life right now is good: the community I am apart of, the people I go to school with, the friends I have, the opportunities I have been given. Those are all wonderful things that I have been blessed during my high school years. And the truth is, a lot of that is coming to an end. The season of my life is about to change.

I could not be more ready and excited most days. Other days the change that is coming overwhelms me. Change can bring storms of uncertainty, fear, and confusion. But the good news is that I am never alone. He will always be in the passenger's seat, weathering the storms right by my side.

"Take courage when the road is long. Don't ever forget, you are never alone. I want you to live forever. Underneath the sky, so blue"- Drew Holcomb

College T-shirt day!

Senior Occupation Day (I am the fortune teller on the right)


slather it on.

I am sure you have seen numerous posts about homemade almond butter if you are a food blog reader, like me. For those of you that are not... you might be surprised to know that you can make your very own almond butter that will cost you A LOT less than $6 a jar. Plus... you can take the credit for it, take pride in enjoying it, and ensure that it is healthy and fresh.

Best part is: 2 ingredients & 2 steps

raw almonds
sea salt

1. preheat oven to 300 degrees F, put almonds on sheet pan, roast for 20-25 min
(test doneness by biting an almond in half and if inner flesh is lightly browned/ tan in color take them out of oven)
2. put almonds in food processor, process until butter-ized (takes a good 15 min of 30 second pulses). Add salt.

And if you love all types of nuts as much as I do, I suggest you read Sarah's, of My New Roots, post about nuts. She tells you all you need to know so you can navigate the nut isle.

Who knew most nuts labeled "roasted" have essentially been deep-fried!?? no thanks.

Have a lovely weekend :)


and I'm back!

It has been over a month, I know. But you only wrap up your high school years once. So I have been totally soaking up the present and not worrying about much else. I decided to take a little hiatus from my blog for a couple of reasons: to get inspired again, remember why I want to write here in the first place, and primarily because I just did not have time. For the month of April I was blogging everyday for my senior project over on Wordpress, which made me realize how much better I like Blogger!

Anyways, I am back and planning on sticking around.

A little bit of my past month or so... (spring time at its finest)

1. simple dinners composed of farmer's market vegetables eaten outside
2. Booger sun-bathing
3. getting my hands dirty on a couple of organic vegetable farms
4. senior prom!
5. college t-shirt day
6. senior occupation day... I was a fortune teller if you can't tell :)

I cannot believe I graduate high school in less than 2 weeks.
Bittersweet indeed.


Checking in + Daydreamin'

I have been so absent from writing here for the past couple of weeks for a few reasons...

1. Tomorrow is my last day of normal high school and the next month will be devoted to my senior project. Each week I will be clocking in 36 hours, working for Red Queen Tarts (a cute little one-women-run business that makes delicious handmade toaster pastries filled with local organic fruits). My high school years are coming to an end oh so quickly and it is becoming bittersweet. So because of all this I have been trying to soak up my last days at school, while keeping my GPA up so I qualify for a scholarship next fall!

2. I have been reading a lot of blog posts about "being an authentic" blogger, which has caused me to question why I even have a blog. The whole idea is kind of funny. Why does my life interest anyone? Who cares what I bake in my kitchen late at night? How many people even read this? I don't really know any of these answers. I do know that I want my posts to have more depth to them. I want to teach y'all something, or challenge you to think about something, or inspire you even. More purpose in my words, gives you more of a purpose to read them.

3. Lacrosse has been pretty exhausting the past couple of weeks. We had 4 games last week and two games this week. I come home late and tired, and the last thing one my list is writing a post.

With all that being said I hope to write more this next month, but who knows how this senior project is going to mix up my schedule.

Now onto the daydreamin' that I've been doing in the midst of all this stuff going on. It has been a little escape for me, a chance to remind myself of the things that make me feel happy, excited and blessed. We were all told in elementary school to "focus, pay attention, and get out of la-la land!" but I am here to say that daydreamin' keeps me more sane than a lot of other things. Breathing is sometimes easier in la-la land. We all need breaks, and my mind is a good place to take one once in while.

I have been daydreaming about going back to Charleston and living there, about doing the Susan G. Komen 3-Day Walk this fall, about climbing the magnificent Mount Kilimanjaro this summer, about moving to a whole different place in a few months, about walking across the stage at graduation, and about waking up at the crack of dawn to bake pastries so very soon!

Charleston dreamin'...

Happy dreaming


Springtime + Popsicles

Went on a marine biology trip for the end of last week down to Skidaway Island, just to come back here and find that it was the same temperature! 80 degrees and super sunny! It is making me nervous about how hot summer is going to be, but other than that I am totally embracing it.

Took a nice walk today after I finished my LAST PAPER for high school ever... can't believe that is true. Soaked up the sun, and stared in awe of the beauty that spring brings. Day dreamed about how delicious a popsicle would taste and figured out what kind I would make once I got home. Quickly put together pineapple, coconut, and date popsicles so they will be ready to enjoy tonight.

Pineapple, Coconut, and Date Popsicles
Inspired by Whole Living's Date Shake Popsicles
1 can half-fat coconut milk
2-3 cups pineapple
5-10 pitted dates (depending on how much you want and how big they are)
1/4 cup shredded unsweetened coconut
Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth. You can chop some of the dates to stir in at the end for some nice chunks in the pops. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze till ready to eat.

Cheers to flowers blooming, pollen falling, and popsicles for lickin'


new favorite place in the world.

So I fell in love with Charleston. Everything about it... the food, the coast, the houses, the streets, the people, the southern charm. It was all beautiful. I am already trying to figure out when I can go back. Until that happens, I will look at these picture a lot, day dream about sitting on Folly beach, and remember how much fun I had with my mom this spring break.

these pictures...
1 & 2. Taco Boy twas delicious
3. little hidden path to a very old cemetery
4. Husk Restaurant- my favorite of the trip I think.
5. the water
6. Folly beach

I have more to share :)
Happy Tuesday!


Pancake Mix.

Spring break is finally here! I just got home from an hour long walk since we didn't have practice today, it was a lovely change of pace.

I have been researching and perusing restaurant's menus for a good bit of time this morning... can not wait to eat in Charleston.

This pancake mix made the best pancakes I have ever had. I have previously not been much of a pancake person, but i think this mix has changed my mind. I made them this past weekend, some with banana slices and some with blueberries dropped in. They will be made again tomorrow morning (since I don't have school!) to kick off all the delicious and leisurely breakfasts I'll be having on my time off.

here's the recipe
Multigrain Pancake Mix
adapted from Heidi Swanson's recipe
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup buckwheat flour
1 cup oat flour (grind up oats in a coffee grinder, you'll get flour)
2 T. baking powder
2 T. chia seeds
2 T. sucanat

Combine all that in a bowl, whisk it together, and put it in a big jar
When you are ready to eat pancakes, measure out 2/3 cup of the mix and then whisk together 2/3 cup buttermilk/milk, 2 T. melted butter or olive oil, and 1 egg add the wet to the dry and mix with spoon until JUST combined- which helps keep them light and fluffy.
Thank you Heidi Swanson.
Oh and it is 70 degrees outside today, which makes the whole spring break thing feel ever better. Happy almost friday!



I got asked to prom by a really great guy on monday.
I have been down with a cold since tuesday.
I have been trying to figure out what I want to do about Lent, if anything. Still have not decided.
I watched Where The Wild Things are on my sick day. I loved it, but I can't put my finger on why.
I spent $30 of my christmas money on this granola. Is that crazy? I'm thinking its going to be the best granola I have ever eaten... fingers crossed.
Today was the first day I took medicine for this cold. I am not really a medicine person.
I did not cook all week until today and what did I make? cookies.
I swooned over Heidi Swanson's Super Natural Everyday all week, and got inspired to put together a pancake mix.
I ripped out all the pages about food from every one of my Whole Living Magazines and put them into a binder. I now have a new cookbook!
I am trying to get ahead on homework this week, since its the last week before SPRING BREAK.
I made reservations at this and this restaurant for our trip to Charleston. (t minus 9 days!!)

I'll be back with the pancake mix recipe and maybe the cookie recipe too!


Sunday Brunch.

Felt like cooking brunch for some girlfriends this past weekend. It was rainy and gray outside, the perfect morning for a brunch. We ate cinnamon rolls made from scratch, a frittata filled with onions and beet greens and topped with goat cheese, homemade granola with yogurt, and strawberries. To put it simply, it was a sunday morning well spent. I hope to do it again soon.


"Clean out the fridge" Soup

What do you do when you have a couple of turnips, too many carrots, past-prime kale and celery, and one lonely onion? Make a soup and put all of it in there! It worked for me, so I would assume that it is a good way to clean out the fridge. After I put a pot of beans on the stove, the rest was pretty effortless. This soup does not have any intense flavors, if that is what you are looking for. It really just highlights the simple flavors of the different veggies, and the beans give it some hardiness. The soup should also accompany a grilled cheese pretty darn well :)

"Clean out the fridge" Soup
1 T. olive oil
1 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, minced
3-4 stalks of celery (i used the leafy ends)
5 whole carrots, diced
3 small turnips, diced
1 quart low sodium veggie stock + 2 cups water
3-4 cups of beans, or 2-3 cans (i used kidney beans)
kale or other winter greens
spices to taste: sage, thyme, pepper, salt, dash of cayenne pepper

Saute onions in oil for about 5 min.
Add garlic and celery- cook for another 5 min.
Add carrots, turnips- cook for 7 min.
Add stock and water. Cover and simmer for 10-15 min.
Add kale and beans. Cut off heat and let cool completely on the stovetop.

Happy Weekend!


late night. round two.

Baking at night time might be my new favorite thing. I did not have any urgent homework to get done last night and I had a few things that I wanted to get off my mind. So, making some Oatmeal, Cranberry, Chocolate Chip cookies seemed like a necessary use of my time. And it was SO worth it.

These might be my favorite cookies ever and I owe them all to the beautiful Giada De Laurentiis! They got that hardy oat flavor, the fruity cranberries, and the chocolate that is in my opinion a necessary component in all cookies... here's the lovely recipe

I have made these cookies numerous times and they are hard to screw up. You can also make them a little more wholesome by using spelt flour or other whole grain flours, organic butter, a mix of sucanat and muscovado sugar, and dark pure chocolate (not Nestles semi-sweet chips like I used last night). 

I am bringing these delicious little bites to lacrosse practice today to celebrate it being Friday and the beginning of a 3 day weekend! I am a little too excited. Have a happy friday and bring some smiles to faces this weekend with these cookies!


Late night baking (scones)

I had been dreaming about making scones for a couple of days and seeing this recipe really convinced me that I would need to pull out some late night time in kitchen this week. So when my english teacher told me that we were having a "dream party" to celebrate the end of reading the super heavy book, The Trial, I knew it was my chance to whip up some scones.

I don't know what it is about scones that makes me feel so smiley and comfy. They come across as looking hard to make and all fancy cause they're a european delicacy at tea time. But the great thing is that they are actually quite rustic. They are easy to put together, totally customizable, and quite fun to make if you ask me. Homemaking them just makes me feel old time-y or maybe like a sophisticated baker? I don't know. All I can say is that I love how making scones, makes me a happier person and I put smiles on the faces of the people who ate them! Only expect more scones to be coming your way.

Thanks to the lovely Heidi Swanson for totally inspiring me to make this wonderful batch of Orange, Oat, and Currant Scones
2 cups whole wheat flour
1 cup kamut flour (or another cup of WW, or another flour that suites you fancy)
2 t. baking powder
1 t. baking soda
1 + 3/4 sticks of butter (preferably organic, if your into that kind of thing)
zest of 1 large orange
2 cups oats
1/2 cup currants (or however much your heart desires)
1+ cup of buttermilk (I needed a little more than a cup to bring my dough together)

whisk flours, b.powder, and b.soda together
cut COLD butter into slices, add to flour and use a pastry cutter to get butter into small pieces
stir in zest, currants, and oats
add buttermilk gradually stirring it in with your hands, use as much buttermilk you need to get dough to hold together so you can make 2 or 3 rounds
cut rounds into triangles
line a sheet pan with parchment, spread triangles across pan, and bake at 350 for 12-15 min (until sides are browned)

Everyone who ate one seemed to give me two thumbs up... one of my teachers told me it was the best scone he has ever had! That gives me reason enough to bake for others more often.

Happy Hump Day!