Sweet Pea Hummus Recipe (SCD approved!)

TO SEE MORE POSTS LIKE THIS ONE, VISIT MY NEW FOOD BLOG AT SPECIFICALLYSWEET.COMProcessed with VSCOcam with s2 presetSummer is here, and it’s the perfect time to enjoy this light and delicious recipe! It is amazingly easy to make, and is the perfect dip for crisp, fresh veggies! Processed with VSCOcam with s2 presetHere’s a recipe I got from my aunt Elizabeth. When I was visiting her last summer, she made this amazing dip and I could not stop eating it! She shared with me the recipe, and I’ve made it several times since then! You will be amazed at the amount of flavor and texture that comes from such a simple list of ingredients!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

2 Cups frozen peas, thawed

2 Tbsp Tahini

2 tsp Cumin powder

Juice of 1 lemon

Salt & Pepper to taste

Simply blend all the ingredients in a food processor and enjoy with some crackers or fresh veggies! I can imagine it would also be an amazing spread on a sandwich or even a nice, thick sauce in a cold pasta!Processed with VSCOcam with s2 preset

“The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.” – Proverbs 18:10

 

 

 

 

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Gingernut Cookie Recipe (SCD approved!)

TO SEE MORE POSTS LIKE THIS ONE, VISIT MY NEW FOOD BLOG AT SPECIFICALLYSWEET.COMProcessed with VSCOcam with s3 presetIf you’re looking for a simple, quick and delicious cookie recipe, look no further! I found this yummy grain/dairy/sugar – free recipe HERE  from this awesome recipe blog that has some great SCD options! I will share with you the recipe, but be sure to check out everything else she has, she’s pretty amazing!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

1/2 cup coconut oil, melted
1/2 cup honey, warmed
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon mixed spice (cinnamon, nutmeg & allspice)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
2 cups almond flour
1/4 cup coconut flour
Preheat oven to 320 degrees. Combine dry ingredients in a mixing bowl, breaking up any lumps. Add melted coconut oil and warmed honey and mix to combine. Line baking tray with baking paper. Roll teaspoons into balls and flatten onto baking tray with palm of hand, allowing room for spreading. Bake  for 8-10 mins, the earlier you pull them out the softer they are, but these cookies are great with some crunch. Cool and Enjoy!Processed with VSCOcam with s3 presetBe anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, shall guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 4:6-7

Another Wild Rumpus!

Since having J’s first birthday party and posting the details HERE on the blog, I’ve had a few inquiries about sharing some of the cute little details from his Wild Rumpus! I’m so excited to share a couple of photos from a gorgeous mama that also had a “Where the Wild Things Are” inspired party for her cute little guy turning one! She threw one heck of a party, and she used some of the details, including the signs and labels, from J’s party! It is so fun to see other’s creativity, especially when just a touch of the inspiration came from my own! This mama covered every, single detail. Check it out!DSC_6369DSC_6184DSC_6185DSC_6187DSC_6226DSC_6175DSC_6176DSC_6657DSC_6220DSC_6219DSC_8029If you are also interested in purchasing any of the adorable printable signs, invitation, or food labels, check them out HERE in my Etsy Shop!

Let the Wild Rumpus Start!

Zucchini Banana Muffins (SCD Approved!)

TO SEE MORE POSTS LIKE THIS ONE, VISIT MY NEW FOOD BLOG AT SPECIFICALLYSWEET.COMSCD_ZucchiniBananaMuffins

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

3 cups almond meal or flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1/4 tsp salt

1 tsp cinnamon

3 eggs

1 cup zucchini, shredded

1/2 cup honey

2 ripe bananas, mashed

Optional:

1/2 cup raisins or walnuts

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Mix all the ingredients together well, and distribute into muffin pan that is either lined with papers or greased well. I like to use butter or coconut oil.

Bake for 15 minutes, then check if a toothpick inserted in the middle of a muffin comes out clean. If not, continue baking, checking every 2 minutes until you get a clean toothpick! Tops of the muffins should get nice and golden!

Allow to cool a bit, then enjoy! I like to spread a little butter on mine, and if I’m feeling super indulgent, a little drizzle of honey on top! Yum!

The Unexpected

As we are quickly approaching our five-year wedding anniversary, I am thinking about what an amazing guy I am lucky enough to live this life with. I thank God for the incredible man He created, and I truly believe he was made just for me.

I am also reminded of the beautiful vows we made that day. Included in those were the vow to love and to cherish. Most of the time, this part comes easy. What’s not to love about a man who is smart, handsome, clever and driven? How could I not cherish a man that provides the incredible love and support, joy and laughter, friendship and acceptance that he does for me?

Another part of our vows we took was to remain faithful and true to each other. It has been, and will always be, an honor to be faithful and true to him. It is such a blessing to know that he, without a doubt, is accountable and faithful to not only me, but to our God.

Then, there was the part about “in sickness or in health”. This part came especially easy because I was marrying a man full of adventure and life. He is the type of person that not only loves adventure, but NEEDS to have it. He is such a morning person, which is not only admirable to me, but is also maybe sometimes annoying. He keeps me going and pushes me to try new things. Within the first couple years of our marriage, he somehow convinced me do a couple crazy endurance events that I NEVER would’ve done without him. As he continued to pursue this and other passions of his, I never once doubted that he would always be like this. He would always be the passionate one, the energetic one, the morning person, the one to push me to new levels. I never doubted that, even into old age, he would remain healthy and full of life.

It wasn’t until this past year that I ever even thought about what it meant to marry “in sickness and in health”. Obviously everyone gets old and that usually means some health problems, but I never anticipated that before even turning 30, we could be faced with the “sickness” part. I never played out what it would be like to drive my husband in frightening, shivering pain to the hospital only to leave him there for days on end. I never anticipated watching my (already lean) husband lose more than 20 pounds in a few short weeks, or to experience the lethargy, embarrassment and pain he had to endure. Just like that, we went from our “normal” life to a whole new life. A life of Dr’s visits, test after test, medical bills, medications, and diagnoses. A life of fear and uncertainty along with often feelings of hopelessness. A life of, at times, not being able to take a road trip or even day trip, to sleep in or go out to eat, go for a bike ride, or take our son to the park if it didn’t have a bathroom.

Don’t get me wrong, there have been good times, too. Thanks to God and modern medicine, there have been times in the past year that we were nearly able to forget about this disease. When he is feeling well, we live life to the fullest. We have been blessed with so many opportunities and have made many amazing memories. We live in a beautiful place, have a beautiful, healthy son, and are so blessed with a beautiful life. Still even yet, there’s no denying that IBD has changed our lives forever.

The hardest part about this disease is the unknown. As of now, there is no cure, only ways to control and relieve symptoms. We have yet to find a viable way to even control his symptoms with medicines that he can take on a long-term basis. He has tried every type of medicine out there, and yet nothing seems to be working. We have done all-natural approaches, even done some questionable and crazy things, but nothing has done the trick. We are now embarking on a new journey as he is entering case studies to see if new medicines can help him. As scary as it is, we are just hoping and praying they will find something that works for him.

As his wife, sometimes the feelings of hopelessness and helplessness are unbearable. I wish someway, somehow I could take away his pain. In no way have I ever regretted the vow I took, even more it has been an honor and blessing to be by his side. Although I wish I could do more, I have decided to do what I can. In addition to fervent prayer and dedication to research, I have committed to raise funds and awareness of this disease and participate in a half-marathon. I am committing to something that I would normally refuse to do (anyone who knows me is well aware that running is probably my least favorite thing to do)to show just how passionate I am about doing what I can to find a cure. IMG_1102My heart goes out to any person and their families that have to deal with this. I ask that you please contribute to the cause with me and support in any way you can! Here is a link to my fundraising page, any amount at all would be such a blessing to my family and to anyone suffering from this! There is also a lot more information, as well, on the disease and foundation your funds would be supporting!  http://www.active.com/donate/napaSDDA14/napa14KDekker

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Thank you for taking the time to read this, I hope in some way it has encouraged you or enlightened you somehow. If you have any questions or comments at all, please feel free to email me at thedaysofdawnblog@gmail.com.

A Beautiful Mess

IMG_20131130_040744I can’t help but feel a wave of nostalgia when I walk into a clean, tidy home with no signs of a toddler in sight. I unexpectedly stopped in on a neighbor the other day, which is something I try very hard not to do, because I am all too familiar with that sudden feeling of panic you get when there’s a knock at the door with no time to change your shirt that was just smeared with peas or pick up the pile of puzzles, books and blocks that is ever-growing in your living room. Don’t get me wrong, I wouldn’t change a thing about my life, but a mix of emotion comes with remembering what life was like before I became a mommy, when I could set something down and it would still be there later, of freshly swept floors and visible table tops, or when my bathtub was lined with bubble baths and body scrubs instead of foam letters and bath crayons. I was reminded when my beautiful toddler-less neighbor casually opened her door to her spotless and serene home of just how much my every day life has truly changed.

I now feel a huge sense of accomplishment if I change out of my pajamas by noon. I no longer stress about whether every dish is clean and put away, as long as my visitor has enough space to set her purse down. When asked if they can use my restroom, my auto response is now, “At your own risk!” I had a mini panic attack the other day when the cable guy sprung a bathroom break on me, and all I could think of is whether or not I removed the tiny little potty seat from the toilet or if he was going to have to navigate around it. My bedroom is NEVER clean anymore, so I quickly pull the door shut if someone comes over. Against every idea I had before having J, my living room has become the official playroom in the house. All that was once decorative and pretty has been replaced by what would survive being thrown on the ground or played with as if it were part of a drum set.

But, my goodness, is he worth it. I wouldn’t trade it for the world. There’s almost a weird sense of pride that comes with every scribble on the wall or every truck I kick out the way to open a door. While I do look forward to the days where I can see my floor again, I know that I will probably feel a whole new sense of nostalgia when I walk into someones home who’s little one is just learning how much fun it is to build a tower of blocks and knock them all down over and over again. Until that days comes, I will just enjoy the beautiful mess I live in and as a blanket statement, my door is always open just don’t expect to find the fresh and tidy home you once would have, but expect to find a ton of mess, a bunch of noise, and a whole lot of fun instead!

“And we urge you, brothers and sisters, warn those who are idle and disruptive, encourage the disheartened, help the weak, be patient with everyone.” – 1 Thessalonians 5:14

Everlasting Love

201When my parents came out to visit a couple of months back, in honor of their 25th wedding anniversary, I snapped a few pictures of them together. It’s not often (actually, it never happens) that my parents take photos together just the two of them. Their love for their family has always been first and foremost, so it’s never been at the top of their priority list to take a moment to focus on themselves and the love that they have shared for 25 amazing years of marriage. I wanted to celebrate their beauty, their youth, their love and commitment, and the joy and laughter they have together by trying to capture it as best I could (since I am not even close to being a photographer) and give them a chance to see themselves as I see them. These are just a few of my favorites.133159145167162178182My parents have been such a blessing and an incredible example to me as two godly people joined in a godly marriage. They often, in so many ways, have exemplified faithfulness and trust, passion and compassion, laughter and joy, and the true meaning of love through their every day lives. I had a very clear image of the qualities I was looking for in a husband long before I found him because of them. I couldn’t be more proud and in awe of them as they turn this major milestone in their lives together, and with such stride! I thank God so much that he made them my parents, I would not be where I am today without them and without the love they have for each other.107061Happy 25th Anniversary, Mom and Dad. Thank you for being the best parents in the world, I am so glad God blessed you both with each other.

“Entreat me not to leave you,
Or to turn back from following after you;
For wherever you go, I will go;
And wherever you lodge, I will lodge;
Your people shall be my people,
And your God, my God.
Where you die, I will die,
And there will I be buried.
The Lord do so to me, and more also,
If anything but death parts you and me.” – Ruth 1:16-17

Pumpkin Beer Cupcakes Recipe

IMG_20130920_055027In honor of tradition, I made a really fun dessert for Brendan’s birthday again this year. Last year, I made him Bacon Chocolate Chip cookies. (Check out the recipe, here!) So, this year I decided to continue with the bacon theme, but throw a few other favorites of his in the mix. If you had Brendan make a list of his top 5 things to eat or drink bacon, pumpkin, cheese, and beer would probably be on that list. So, I put them all together in one little cupcake and they were pretty tasty, if I do say so myself! Here’s how to make these  Pumpkin Beer Cupcakes with Maple Cinnamon Cream Cheese Frosting and Candied Bacon!

WHAT YOU’LL NEED:

For the cupcakes:

2 cups flour

1/2 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

1 tsp salt

1 tbsp pumpkin pie spice

1 cup pumpkin puree

2/3 cup pumpkin ale

4 tbsp butter (1/2 stick)

2 eggs

1/3 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

For the frosting:

6oz cream cheese,  room temperature

1 cup confectioners sugar, sifted

1 tbsp salted butter

1 tbsp cinnamon

3 tbsp maple syrup

For the candied bacon:

3-5 slices of bacon

2 Tbsp brown sugar

Start by placing the bacon slices on a cold baking sheet, sprinkle with brown sugar evenly, and place in cold oven. Turn oven on to 350 degrees and check back in 15 minutes. You want the bacon to be crispy, but not charred, so remove when they’re the perfect, sizzling crispness and cool. When bacon is cooled, chop into small pieces to sprinkle on top of the frosting at the end.

Now for the cupcakes. The oven is already preheated to 350 from the bacon, so all you need to prep is putting the cupcake liners in the tin. Then, in a mixing bowl, combine flour, baking soda, baking powder, pumpkin pie spice and salt, set aside. In a non stick frying pan, melt butter over low heat until slightly browned. In a mixing bowl, combine browned butter with granulated and brown sugars, whisk together until combined. Add eggs, pumpkin and beer to the butter sugar mixture and fold together with a spatula. Then slowly fold in the dry ingredients. Using a tablespoon, spoon batter into cupcake tins evenly and don’t over-fill! Bake for 10-15 minutes, or until toothpick inserted comes out clean, then cool.

Meanwhile, you can prepare your frosting by beating together cream cheese, cinnamon, maple syrup and butter until well combined.  Slowly beat in powdered sugar until desired sweetness and consistency.

Once cupcakes are cooled, frost and top with candied bacon bits, and enjoy! I hope you enjoy these as much as we did!IMG_20130920_034459

“We love because he first loved us.” – 1 John 4:19

I Love You, Sweet Baby

Hearing this song today brought many tears to my eyes. While dancing, shaking tambourines, playing drums and swaying side to side with baby J in his room, I was so simply reminded of the many days we’ve spent following this very same “to-do list” with our sweet baby and what a joy it has been!  Life has been so good with baby J, and I was so tickled to hear it all play out in a fun, little quirky song!

I Love You Sweet Baby by Kimya Dawson

The first thing in our list of things to do
Is to wake up right next to you
Second thing that we have planned
Is to kiss both of your hands

Third thing that we’ll do today
Is look you in the eye and say
I love you sweet baby, I love you sweet baby
I love you more than anything

Then we’re gonna change you
Then we’re gonna feed you
Then we’re both play peek-a-boo
Then we’re gonna read to you

Then you have more milk and have some water
And we’ll smile at you and tell you we’re so glad that you’re our daughter
Then you’ll fall asleep on daddy’s lap
We’ll watch MacGyver while you take a nap

When you wake up we have more plans
Say good morning baby and kiss your hands
Then you’re gonna make a pee
In your little green potty

Then we’re gonna eat our lunch
Mash apricots for you to munch
Then you’re gonna nurse again
Then we’re gonna call our friends

Then we’ll dump out all your toys
Singin’, dancing, make some noise
Then we’re gonna take a walk
Down the street to the park

We’ll play on the see-saw, play on the slide
You’ll get tired and rub your eyes
Then we’ll go home for more nursing and sleeping
Bouncing and nursing and waking and peeing
Crawling and bouncing and dancing and hitting
Nursing and peeing and kisses and seeing

You’re an amazing human being
You’re an amazing human being
You’re an amazing human being
You’re an amazing human being

Then we’ll all cuddle in our bed
You’ll nurse to sleep, we’ll kiss your head
Good night sweet baby, I love you sweet baby
I love you more than anything
Good night sweet baby, I love you sweet baby
I love you more than anything

The first thing in our list of things to do
Is to wake up right next to you
Second thing that we have planned
Is to kiss both of your hands

Third thing that we’ll do today
Is look you in the eye and say
I love you sweet baby, I love you sweet baby
I love you more than anything

I love you sweet baby, I love you sweet baby
I love you more than anything
I love you sweet baby, I love you sweet baby
I love you more than anything

 

Quinoa Fried Rice Recipe

To my dismay, I have a very picky little eater on my hands. Baby J is extremely selective in the foods he will eat, but one of the things he really enjoys is rice! I decided to mix it up on him a little bit and sub in some quinoa in an otherwise favorite dish of his, and it worked like a charm! He enjoyed it so much, it will definitely be a staple in our house, since it’s easy to whip up, has a variety of healthy ingredients, and is perfect for reheating for days!

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What you’ll need:

1 C White Quinoa, rinsed well and drained

2 C Chicken stock

1/2 C Edamame, shelled and thawed

1/2 C Peas, thawed

1/2 C Garbanzo Beans

1 Carrot, chopped and cooked until soft

2 eggs, fried

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Coconut Aminos (in place of soy sauce)

Garlic Powder, Salt & Pepper to taste

Cook the quinoa in chicken stock (or water, if you prefer) until it is a nice, fluffy texture and the germ is visible. In a separate pan, start by boiling the chopped carrots in shallow water in the bottom of a sauce pan until super tender (I was making this dish for my one year old, but you can keep it with more firm texture if you’d like) Then, drain the water and drizzle a little olive oil in the pan before adding the two eggs. Stir until the eggs are cooked well, then drop in the edamame, peas, garbanzos, and cooked quinoa.  Season and add the coconut aminos (or soy sauce) to taste and serve! If you like a little spice (like I do) I highly recommend a drizzle of Sriracha! I hope you enjoy this quick and super simple recipe as much as we did!

 

“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you, with all wisdom teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” – Colossians 3:16