Monday, November 10, 2014

Light it up!

Walking up to my boyfriend's house this weekend I suddenly noticed the exterior house lights were an awful shade of pink. I mentioned it to him and he said his mom was thinking about painting them black. I chatted with her about it and next thing I knew, nick and I were off to Home Depot to get some black spray paint.

We managed to get them off the house and taken apart with no injuries. I set up an area in the garage and went to work. A couple of coats later they were beautiful.

The next morning we got them back up with only a few swear words! All in all it was an easy yet super satisfying project! Here are the before and afters...

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Homemade Ham & Pineapple Pizza

Okay, so I’m not sure if I’ve ever mentioned this on my blog, but pizza is my favorite food in the world. I don’t care if that makes me a 12 year old. I love it for many reasons, including, but not limited to:
  1. It covers all four food groups.
  2. It brings ham and pineapple together in my mouth.
  3. It's just as good leftover as it is fresh.
  4. It's covered in cheese.

I’m kind of embarrassed to admit that, until recently, I’ve never made a pizza from scratch... Unless you count pita-pizzas, in which case I’ve made hundreds!

Anyhow, I decided to rectify this blasphemous situation and so I bought myself a pizza stone, peel and assorted pizza making ingredients. I went to town on them and succeeded brilliantly. With brilliant forethought I made 2 LARGE Pizzas and therefore got to eat a whole ton of it. (Don’t worry, I worked it off at bootcamp!) Below is the recipe for homemade pizza sauce and homemade pizza dough…

Super Flavorful Homemade Pizza Sauce (original recipe here)
1 can tomato paste
6 oz warm water
3 tbsp Parmesan cheese
6 cloves crushed garlic
2 packets of Splenda (or a couple tsp of white sugar)
1 tsp onion powder
½ tsp oregano
½ tsp marjoram
½ tsp basil
½ tsp black pepper
¼ tsp cayenne pepper
¼ tsp dried red pepper flakes
Salt to taste


  1. Combine ingredients together. Make sure to crush oregano, marjoram and basin in your band first, which releases the flavor.
  2. Let pizza sauce sit for at least 30 minutes so the flavors can marry.

Easy Homemade Pizza Dough (original recipe here)
1 package active dry yeast
1 cup warm water (110 degrees F)
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp salt
2 tsp white sugar

  1.  Dissolve yeast in a bowl with warm water. Let stand 10 minutes.
  2. Combine all other ingredients and mix until a still dough has formed. Cover and let rise about 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
  4. On a floured surface, knead dough until it’s no longer sticky.
  5. Use your hands to press the dough out into a circle big enough to fit your pizza stone, or use a rolling pin.
  6. Top with sauce, then ham, then pineapple and then mozzarella cheese (or whatever delicious pizza toppings you like).
  7. ENJOY your pizza goodness.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

Homemade Walnut Date Oatmeal Raisin Energy Bars

I've been looking for a homemade granola bar recipe for ages, but they always call for ingredients I don't keep on hand so I never got around to making them.

However last weekend, Sara fed me an energy bar that was pretty yummy and only had 5 ingredients, which is such a rare and beautiful thing. I decided I must buy dates and make my own.

I found a set of recipes that seemed too easy to screw up and boy was I right. The only problem was I couldn't figure out how to work my brand new food processor... Seriously, appliances confuse me. I tried everything to no avail and ended up using my magic bullet which worked mostly fine.

The dates and walnuts blended together tastes strangely (and deliciously) like cookie dough. I ate so much of the batter out of the bowl that I feared I wouldn't be able to make a full batch of granola bars, so I decided to add the raisins and oatmeal in to beef it up. This recipe was 100% off the cuff and still so delicious. Pretty sure you could put any kind of add ins in here and it would be tasty. Without further ado, here ya go:

Homemade Walnut Date Oatmeal Raisin Energy Bars (Original recipe here)

1 cup dates
2 cups warm water
1 cup walnuts
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup oatmeal
1/4 tsp cinnamon

  1. Line a loaf pan with plastic wrap and spray with nonstick cooking spray.
  2. Put dates and raisins in a bowl and pour warm water over top. Let sit for 10 minutes until plump and then strain.
  3. While the fruit is plumping, pulse the walnuts in a food processor, or magic bullet (if you don't have or don't know how to work your food processor like me) until they are finely chopped. If you want bigger chunks of nuts, add some extras in towards the end.
  4. Then add the dates adn raisins to the nut mixture in the food processor and pulse until everythign starts to come together. Then mix in cinnamon and oatmeal.
  5. Plop into the loaf pan and spread out with a spoon.
  6. Refrigerate for 30 min, then cut them into 6 bars and individually wrap for snacks.

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Bootcamp Avocado-But-Still-Chocolate Brownies

We are having a Bootcamp girls get together night tomorrow. It's a pot luck which is fun. It's also like this weird contest women do to see who can make the best dish. Or maybe that's just me. It's a known fact anything with melted cheese will be in the running for at least top three. Meatballs, devilled eggs, and things stuffed with other things are always big hits. Unfortunately my appetizer skills are pretty minimal. I usually bring out a veggie, pita and hummus tray to shut my hungry friends up. Once the wine starts flowing they usually forget all about food anyways!

So my conundrum for pot lucks is what to bring! And the answer I usually select is baked goods. If it's an all girls party I invariably go to brownies. Bit*hes love brownies. (Lol too much? Sorry!)

I have this bad habit of wanting to put healthy things in my baking. It's mostly me trying to make the world a better place and also to try to justify the eating of brownies on a more regular basis. Today it was avocados I needed to stuff in my brownies. Avocados are super creamy and full of healthy days and antioxidants. They aren't just for guacamole, people! Here's how I made my treats...

Bootcamp Avocado-but-still-Chocolate Brownies
1 avocado, mashed
3/4 cup almond milk
1 tbsp vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1 cup whole wheat flour
3/4 cup white sugar
3/4 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup cocoa powder
1tsp baking powder
1/2 Tsp salt
1 cup Hershey's mini kisses or chocolate chips

  1. Preheat Oven to 350. Grease a 9x13 dish.
  2. Beat avocado, almond milk and vanilla together until smooth. 
  3. Add in dry ingredients and mix until just combined.
  4. Add in chocolate chips.
  5. Spread batter evenly in pan and bake for 26-30 minutes.
Avocado peanut butter chocolate frosting
1 avocado mashed
1/2 cup all natural peanut butter
2 cups icing sugar
1 Tsp vanilla
1/3 Tsp salt
  1. Mix mashed avocado and peanut butter until creamy.
  2. Add in icing sugar a little at a time and mix until smooth.
  3. Add in vanilla and salt.
  4. Frost brownies while they are still warm.
  5. Top with chopped Reese peanut butter cups if so desired (who wouldn't desire that?).

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Spectacular Spaghetti Squash with Garlic Sausage and Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

I went through a phase of eating way too much squash and got all squashed out. I am back on the squishy squash train and have a delightful recipe to share with you!

First, some quick facts... Did you know spaghetti squash only has 31 calories and 7 grams of carbs per 100 grams? Compare that to pasta at 374 calories and 75 grams of carbs!

It's also super easy to make and doesn't have a super squashy taste to it! Forgive me for the annoyingly long name but I couldn't come up with anything shorter!  Now, here's my recipe...

Spectacular Spaghetti Squash with Garlic Sausage and Roasted Red Pepper Sauce

1 spaghetti squash
1 coil garlic sausage
3 cloves of garlic
1/2 white onion
1 red bell pepper
1 cup white mushrooms
1 pint cherry tomatoes
1 jar roasted red pepper tomato sauce
Seasonings to taste - I used salt, pepper, oregano, basil and cayenne
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Cut spaghetti squash in half lengthwise and remove seeds.
  3. Place skin side up on tinfoil lined baking sheet and bake for 30-40 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile in a frying pan, cook sliced sausage until nicely browned.
  5. In a large pot, heat a couple tablespoons of oil and add chopped onion and garlic. 
  6. Once garlic sausage is done add that to the pot as well.
  7. Then add mushrooms, tomatoes and red pepper, letting them soften before adding pasta sauce.
  8. Add spices in to taste.
  9. When squash is done, let it cool slightly and then use a fork to scrape the squash to make the 'noodles'. You can add the pasta sauce directly to the squash for a cute presentation, or scoop it out into a bowl.
  10. Top with some grated cheese and fresh basil and enjoy!

Friday, March 7, 2014

Sun Runnin' Fool

Sun run season is almost upon us. It's coming up April 27. I signed up on a whim and was hoping I could convince nick to join me. Apparently that was wishful thinking. I believe he gave me an "absolutely not" when I asked him. Im not too concerned on finding a running buddy as I do enjoy running solo.

I started training in March, committing myself to one "long" run every weekend as I have Bootcamp Monday Tuesday Thursday during the week. I started out with a five km run and have been upping it by one km every week. Tomorrow should be 8km but I'm in whistler and am going to substitute a treadmill run for a real one, so we will see. I have a way harder time running that type of distance ona a treadmill, I always want to just up the speed and get it done with sooner but then I get a side Cramp and end up dying.

I don't have Bootcamp for the second half of March so I'll be able to get in a few extra runs and will do some speed work at the track too! Wanna race? Meet me at LSS! :)

I'm aiming for a sun run finish time of under an hour and hopefully under 55 minutes. Last week I ran  my 7 k in 41 min and it was sub zero temperatures. I think in milder weather I'll be able to pick up the pace and hit my goal!

Check it out, I got a new iPhone arm band. I'm sure this will also make me faster. Hiding my phone in my sports bra has gotta be slowing me down :/

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Chicken Lettuce Wraps

I love lettuce wraps. I can't help but order them when I come across them on a menu. I don't know why I've waited this long to make them myself! They are very simple to make and are great for lunch or dinner. This week I literally brought a container full of filling and a head of lettuce to work. Viola - lunches taken care of!

Chicken Lettuce Wraps
2 tbsp oil
1lb boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut up in small pieces
1 can water chestnuts, drained and diced
2 red bell peppers, diced
1 bunch green onions, chopped
2 carrots, shredded
3 tbsp soy sauce
3 tbsp hoisin sauce
1 tbsp garlic powder (or fresh)
1 tsp ground ginger (or fresh)

salt and pepper to taste
1/2 cup cashews, chopped
1 head iceberg lettuce
  1. Heat oil in pan and cook chicken until no longer pink.
  2. Meanwhile, chop vegetables and nuts.
  3. Once chicken is cooked add in vegetables, sauce and spices and cook for a few minutes until warmed through. I knew I would be reheating this, so I didn't cook it for very long as I didn't want the vegetables to get soggy.
  4. Spoon filling into lettuce and wrap up to eat. You can top with extra chopped cashews and/or grated carrots if you are looking for more crunch.
  5. Enjoy:)

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Chicken Cheese Avocado Quesadilla

My daily life revolves around food. Often, before I'm even out of bed I have a meal plan. Might sound excessive but remember that I eat the same thing for breakfast every day (banana, mixed berries, flax and almond milk protein smoothie) and I plan my lunches and a general dinner theme on Sunday. I know most people can't/won't eat the same thing for five days straight, but lucky for me I thrive on consistency. Also, I try to be conscious about not over shopping and buying more food than I need, then having to throw it away., so I don't usually have too many options!

Quesadillas are something I make all the time. Fact: quesadillas are delicious. Even when I have no groceries I still have the fixings for a dilla. All you need is cheese and tortilla- never let yourself run out of those! Sometimes I make them as simple as pesto and cheese. Often I'll use leftover fajita filling. I love a pesto cranberry chicken and Parmesan dilla. My most favourite, by far, is chicken with cheese and avocado!

Chicken Cheese Avocado Quesadilla

Whole wheat tortilla

  1. Place wrap in a frying pan and turn stove to medium-high.
  2. Chop chicken into bite sized pieces (I used teriyaki chicken -yum)
  3. Sprinkle one half of tortilla with cheese, then top with chicken.
  4. Cut up avocado and distribute half on top of chicken, top with more cheese.
  5. Mash the remainder of the avocado and spread on empty side of tortilla.
  6. Fold the tortilla over on itself and cook until edges harden, then flip to other side. This only takes a few minutes. 
  7. Get your salsa out and a plate, cut the dilla into 4 pieces and enjoy!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Banana Coconut Oatmeal Flax Muffins

I am working on cleaning up my pantry, which means lots of interesting baking adventures! I'm also working on getting back in shape and that means I'm hungry all the time and need more snacks. This recipe was inspired by those two things - a healthy snack with a whole bunch of stuff in it!

Who can argue with deliciously sweet banana mixed with chewy coconut and yummy oats?  Nobody that I'd like to know, that's for sure!

Banana Coconut Oatmeal Flax Muffins (original recipe here)


3 Tbsp flax seed
6 Tbsp water
4 Ripe bananas
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup coconut oil (melted)
2 Tsp vanilla
2 Tsp baking soda
1/2 Tsp kosher salt (or table or sea)
1 cup all purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 Tsp cinnamon
1/2 cup unsweetened shaved coconut


  1. Preheat oven to 375. Grease one muffin tin (this will make 12 good sized muffins).
  2. In your magic bullet, blend ground flax with water. This mixture acts as an egg substitute!
  3. Add the flax to your mashed bananas.
  4. In another bowl mix your melted coconut oil with brown sugar, then add vanilla and flax And egg mixture.
  5. Add your dry ingredients to the wet and mix untrustworthy combined. Don't over mix or you will ruin everything.
  6. Scoop into muffin tin then sprinkle with coconut or oats or both. Cinnamon sugar would be delicious too!
  7. Bake for 22 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean!

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Bootcamp aka death camp pt2

Bootcamp day 2. I spent most of my day trying not to move too much. Nearly every muscle in my body is sore.... Read all about Bootcamp day 1 here! I have been trying not to think too much about how much worse tonight's session is going to be.

Just put on my workout clothes. These ones also have shrunk since I last wore them. I think I need some laundry lessons.
I'm hoping tonight is a whole new set of exercises. I might cry if I have to do another burpee.

Leaving for class now. If I don't die of muscle failure, I will finish this post later tonight.

Survived class 2. Lots of running probably saved me, since it meant less burpies and push-ups. Worked with weights but Manda was kind enough to let me use her five lb weights and she used my 8s!

Once again I realized (slash Manda pointed out) how uncoordinated I am! So many of the stretches and sets were multi-movement exercises that my brain and body parts just don't know how to deal with. Luckily everyone is too busy to notice that my super lunge jump looks more like a mix between a seizure and a dance move!

No fainting spells this time around, however acid reflux kicked in about half way through. Still suffering from it now. Will have to google the cause and figure out how to prevent it.

Tomorrow is our break day so I have some time to recuperate my traumatized muscles. Stay tuned for more!

Xo Shelly.