Granola, Love, and Longing.

Trapped in my apartment by a thick white barricade, I decided to make  granola. There’s something comforting about the smell of warm oats and cinnamon filling my small space and making it a little less painful when stuck inside on a Saturday. Especially a Saturday when your baby cousin is turning one, all 10 teeth and 22 pounds of her, in a secret garden created just for her. If I sound a little resentful, I am. I wanted to be with my family in New Jersey. I wanted to celebrate Ava’s first year, see how she’s grown, soak up her little hugs and kisses, and capture the little person she’s becoming. Expectations can be dangerous. Often times I hear my yoga teacher’s share that we need to learn to live in the moment free from expectations and void of anticipations. Easier said than done. Also, I’m not sure I buy into the philosophy completely. Yes, filled with hope and anticipation, the snow deflated me. Yes, I was  frustrated, disappointed, and sad but it also reminded me how much I love, long, and care for my family. I think anticipation is a part of longing, and longing is a part of loving.

love family

Back to the granola…

I recently made a batch of granola over Valentine’s Day, spreading some pink and white loving to people in my life but it’s never too soon to make granola again…

DSC01218 This time around I had to get creative. I planned to stop at whole foods after yoga yesterday (naturally, fitting a stereotype), but the snow came even sooner than predicted and instead I drove straight home. I didn’t have much in my apartment to add to my creation, BUT I did have some extra ripe bananas, coconut shreds, almonds, dates and white chocolate chips, these would have to do.

I turned the extra ripe bananas in banana chips…it’s simpler and more delicious than Imagined. I set the oven to 275 and baked them with a little lemon juice, salt, and cinnamon for an hour and a half (flipping the bananas halfway through). Pictures don’t do them justice the flavor was bursting with banananess. It tasted natural and potent and beat the sugary oily store-bought version hands down (pictured above).

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DSC01234(Sadly, they will never be the models of the banana world)

Then I turned to an older granola recipe for the amounts of oats, oil, sweeteners, and water.                                       DSC01231

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(toasted granola with white chocolate, dates, almonds, coconut, and banana chips)

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 Making granola was therapeutic, eating food mindlessly to fill a void is unhealthy and unsatisfying. But filling an empty time creating flavors, smells, and warmth to comfort yourself can be soothing and helpful. It’s an important distinction when we talk about food being comforting (just the dietitian coming out).  Yesterday, It was just what I needed on a cold isolated night and now I have lots of the love to share…

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Bikram: Why I Spend 90 Minutes in 105 Degrees.

 

yoga

My eyelids were heavy like they had gained 20 pounds in the last hour.  I drove home from work, mentally and physically exhausted from the day. Nothing but dinner and a nap appealed to my senses, but I knew those wouldn’t be my reality. When I’m lucky, if you call it that, the person I want to become is louder than the tired, cranky, hot-mess that I submit to by 5:00 pm. I got home and changed into my yoga clothes before I allowed myself to devour the energy bar, yogurt, and apple I would consider dinner. Then I teased my sense of relaxation with 10 minutes in my bed while mindlessly looking in the digital window of people’s lives. It’s so easy to look at an edited picture of someone and imagine the life they live like it’s a summer night on a beach in Jamaica all day every day. I somehow leave my computer screen feeling a little less positive than before I laid down, reminding me this wasn’t where I supposed to waste my time. I wait until the last minute and gather my towel, water, and mat and head to the studio that has become my second home.

Late and exhausted, I smile at whichever one of my lovely friends is working the front desk and soak up whatever energy their return response provides me. I lay my mat out in the hot dim room and wait patiently for the teacher’s welcome.  It begins with  breath, the basic reminder that I am lucky to have this moment, this day, and this life.  Filling my lungs with air reminds me that I do have energy as long as I have control over my breath. Then it proceeds into a movement that causes me to forget my thoughts and focus on the placement of my body in this heated, glowing, room.

I’m no longer thinking about the mistake I made at work, the gossip I shouldn’t have contributed to, the way I over-reacted in an argument, or the email I forgot to send. Instead I am focusing on learning to lock out my knee, grip my foot with all ten of my fingers including my thumbs, suck my stomach in, push my out my heel and bend my toes back for standing head-to-knee pose. I mean who could possibly carry another thought with all those instructions? Not to mention the heat had begun creating small droplets of sweat dripping in a steady rhythm down my temple. I trust my breath as it leads my  soaked body through all 26 postures.

I am not overwhelmed when I can’t balance on my right toe in toe stand and I am not frustrated when I fall out of standing bow two times on one leg. Surprisingly, the perfectionist in me has chilled out a bit and I am satisfied working towards goals, I trust that if I keep kicking back  and reaching forward that one day I will straighten my leg high above my head and see my reflection in the mirror. I find comfort in knowing I am exactly where I need to be if I am ever going to balance on my right toe with both hands at my heart and get back up flawlessly.

The thing about yoga  is it allows me to start simple with my breath, focus without distractions on small tiny efforts, that I am sure will one day lead me to success. It blocks out unnecessary distractions and allows me to live in each warm dedicated moment. It reminds me it’s okay to fail. The concentration lets me see hard-fought progress on a strong day and humbles me with failure on my weaker ones. Some days when I am not sure why I pass up wishing I was living someone else’s summer night in Jamaica I remember that yoga is my metaphor to the way I want to lead my life.

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WIAW Accomplished

It’s pitiful the amount of times I have attempted a WIAW (what I ate Wednesday) post and failed. I cannot even give you an exact amount of attempts because counting would involve more effort than I put into the charade. However, today I got it done. I successfully photographed  ALMOST everything I ate. I say almost everything because my co-worker surprised me with a small container (1/3 cup) of homemade asparagus soup with a drop of goat cheese (insert mmmhhhmmm) that I didn’t picture…. it’s a shame because it was probably the best thing I ate today…go figure.

I love WIAW posts because they can spark ideas on future meal plans for others. Plus, who doesn’t love looking at food pictures? However, the love I have for reading these themed posts never provided enough encouragement to record each meal and reflect on it.

energy flow

My documenting success today came from a deeper desire to jump on the healthy eating train. Somewhere between a knee injury, the holidays, work-stress, and partying I fell off and I’m trying to get back on. The thing about documenting is it keeps you in touch the reality of your food choices. Taking pictures and being aware can be healthy and keep things in perspective.

honesty

For me, it’s not about sticking to a calorie number but reflecting on food decisions in the larger scope of a day and sharing meal ideas. Counting calories can quickly become an unhealthy obsession or habit that can take the joy away from eating.

My morning started with some pre-run fuel:

Morning things

 

A small apple and some hazelnut coffee from a motivational mug :)

After four easy miles and a warm shower I had breakfast:

Breakfast ingredients breakfast smoothie

A tropical fruit protein smoothie…this was my first time trying the tropical fruit mix and I wasn’t too impressed. I think the blend of all the different fruit prevented any strong distinct flavor…just give me strawberries and I’m a happy girl.

Morning Snack:

eggs

I had 2 hard-boiled eggs around 10am, appetizing pictures I know. I am a fan of hardboiled eggs and high protein snacks because they keep me full until lunch.

Lunch

lunch

 

This is one of my more ambitious types of lunches.  Grilled chicken, green beans, carrots, and humus.

Dinner

Dinner 2

Dinner was a new soup, light chicken enchilada, with an added chicken sausage and humus toast :)

Add the asparagus soup and about 3 bottles of water and a couple more black coffees with Splenda and that was my day. I feel good and know this was a healthy amount of food for me.

Simple Chocolate Peanut Butter Kinda Day

Every so often I find myself in the perfect simple day. One where I don’t feel rushed, tired, or overwhelmed. A day without big exciting plans but small ones with time to waste. It brings a calm mixture of productivity, enjoyment, interaction, and reflection. Today is something like one of those days.

simple pleasures

The morning began with a long over due orthopedic doctors appointment for my knee. Ever since the Richmond Marathon I haven’t been able to log more than 4 consecutive miles without knee pain. Today I finally saw a doctor and it turns out my personal web MD diagnosis of IT Band syndrome was the doctor’s best guess as well. I’ll follow up with a post on this later (hopefully) but for now that’s one check in the self-care box for me.

self compassion

I took advantage of the day off to get to know my Vitamix, I think it is safe to say the love affair has begun. With a little trial and error, I created a sweet Chocolate Peanut Butter that probably won’t make it through the week in my fridge.

C PB 2 label

Ingredients: 

  • 4 cups of Planters dry roasted peanuts
  • 2 Tbsp agave nectar
  • 2 Tbsp Special dark cocoa powder
  • 1 Tsp vanilla extract

Peanuts

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Directions: 

  • Throw all ingredients in the blender or food processor (Vitamix if your family gifts you with one) and blend until desired consistency.
  • Then eat on a spoon, with your fingers, on bread, in oats, with coconut… really however your little heart desires….

This was my choice….

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After breakfast and some continuing RD education, I got to have lunch with my beautiful preggo friend Britt.  We started to talk plans for her baby shower I’ll be hosting. It’s crazy how fast time goes, it seems like just last week we were sitting in high school math class passing notes and talking about prom plans and now, close to 8 years later, she’s prepping for motherhood. I guess you have to embrace each beautiful moment as it comes.

change

quinoa

After lunch, a delicious lunch of quinoa, kale, chicken, and baby talk, I ran the four miles my legs could withstand and hurried back to write this post for you.

I plan to let this perfectly simple day drift away from me, spending time with myself in yoga and then lost in the pages of a good book.

simple simple

2014

I realize I am seven days behind but bear with me please. I lost myself a little in the chaos of vacation. The forced structure of the workweek has me reflecting on 2014 and my thoughts, hopes, and desires for 2015.

I was reading a post from a friend’s blog during my time off. He wrote a post called “A Nostalgic Ache” and it stuck with me. He was looking at old photographs and he said:

“ But they offered me inspiration and reminded me to savor the simple moments in life. They stretched my mind and warmed it up with idle use to start or end my day. I don’t think many moments can be properly cherished until you have the time to look back on them, which is a shame. Maybe that strange feeling is a form of longing for what these images represent, places you can see but never touch again.” 

…I know, beautiful right? You can read  more of his stuff here: http://myemptywhitepages.wordpress.com/

This post kept sticking with me as I sat down to write my 2015 goals. My mind is always in the future. I set goals both daily and weekly about tangible things I need to do or changes I want to make to improve my life. There is a positive sense of hope and a guiding sense of direction with measurable goals. You need them to move forward but behind them is also discontent. I’m scared that I’ll spend too much time chasing a life I’ll never catch. Not because I can’t reach my goals but because I will always be running after a new one without slowing down to take it all in.

With this in mind, I thought I’d take a little different spin to this New Year’s themed post. Instead of writing about everything that could be different or better, I want to focus on the things I have now. The things that one day I know I will look back on and long for.

Eleven Things to cherish from 2014 in no particular order

  1. Painting my first apartment with my dad. My dad knew how important it was for me to move out onto my own and be independent. Unlike me, he doesn’t get very sentimental with his words.  His actions say it all. He let me drag him around Home Depot, waited patiently while I showed him tons of pictures on Pinterest and then spent two days painting with me!

IMG_3156New apartment .jpg2. Being with my sister when she overcame heartache. This was a sad part of the year but there was beauty in the sadness because she was so strong and dealt with her pain head on. She let the people she loved be there for her and I think we all grew a little from the process.

IMG_30993. The birth of my baby cousin Ava. My cousin Heather and I have a very special connection and there is something  amazing about someone you know and love so much having a child. Her and her husband are such amazing people and I just love that Ava SO much.

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IMG_28224. Every Sunday Dinner’s with the fam. I have a close relationship with each of the 5 members of my family. One day my parents will be older and my siblings and I will have families of our own. But I value the time we have together now, the closeness, and the fun we have together. I never want to lose the sense of the home I have now.

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5. Crazy vacations with my friends. Age has made me less comfortable with spontaneity. I hope I never get too old or mature to drive to the beach with my friends and forget about life for a few days.

6. Getting my first big girl job. I’ve worked so hard to be where I am in my career now and although I am always striving for growth I need to recognize how far I have come.

7.Visiting Italy with my family. Enough said.

IMG_24848. Celebrating Molly’s 21st birthday in Savannah. I tease my little sister that she’s a Diva because she demanded a destination 21st birthday from  Katie and I but the truth is I am grateful she cares so much about creating memorable experiences and got us to go. I am also really happy she can come with us to the bar now.

IMG_33609. Running my third marathon in Richmond with Molly. I loved everything about this weekend. The run, the food,  and mostly  my family.

unnamed (1)DSC0115310. Adrienne passing the bar. Adrienne’s one of my best friend’s and I watched her study her butt off and then pass the Maryland bar like a champ. A remarkable achievement from an amazing girl who is now my legal counsel and partner in crime? I am just happy to witness it all!

DSC0084511. My cousin Rafi’s Wedding and sharing my name with his Amy! I love every moment I get to spend with my Alaska cousins and ever since Amy and Rafi started dating she’s felt like one of the cousins. It was so much fun being a part of the vegan. Yes vegan wedding.

Rafi's wedding

 

These are just 11 of my special moments in the past year. While there will always be goals sitting in the journal on my counter I think these things are more important for me to dwell on.

My friend wraps it up better than I can  so “A Nostalgic Ache” ends like this…

The sun rubbed our backs and turned our skin dark and golden because we earned it, we turned enjoying summer into an art. No amount of heat or slick sweat could keep us from sitting outside long enough to enjoy the transition of summer day to summer night, when the crickets started to join our conversations in the distance, and the lightning bugs silently looked for love.

Looking back, I think we had already found it.

 

Back to Blogging

It’s been a while since my last post and I mean a while. The last time I wrote was the Richmond marathon over a month ago. Which is far from my goal of three posts a week. I’ve been busy sure, but that’s not my excuse. Nope, I’ve been busy in the past and it hasn’t prevented me from sharing my life with you. The truth is my creativity was burnt out just like my legs for a little while and it’s a spiral effect. When I’m not writing I’m not reading as many blogs, I have fewer ideas and less inspiration. But I won’t dwell on that because somehow my fingers found the keys and they are moving along in peaceful-rhythm.

believe in your own magic

What started this melody? Inspiration seemed to be sneaking in from so many different areas of my life nudging me to write so I finally accepted it. I have so many beautiful people and things in my world that I just need to get it all out!

It started when my thoughtful co-workers Sally and Lynn surprised me with holiday gifts,  an Up Early With Amy Mug from Sally and a wellness journal form Lynn (not pictured).

IMG_3607  It was so thoughtful and sweet. It reminded me to never underestimate the power of simple thoughtful gifts. Sometimes I plan to get family and friends something here or there and put it off or decide it’s not worth the trouble. But it is. Receiving g these gifts made my week and if you can do that for someone else you should. Even if it’s a just a small card to let someone know you are thinking of them.

“Never get tired of doing little things for others sometimes those little things occupy the biggest part of their hearts ~Ida Azhuri”

This alone was enough to make me start writing again…

Heathers note

But then there was a Christmas note from my cousin Heather whose more like a sister. In it, she reminds me of all the great things that have happened for me over the past year including my blog. If you don’t have someone in your life like that you should start being that person for someone you care about…it makes all the difference.

I can’t forget my cousins Becky and Dan who edited work for me with thought and consideration the day I send it to them.

family

I’m not done.

Next is my yoga studio owner Diana and the community she created. The studio is moving locations and I spent last night helping Diana pack up old photos, newspaper clippings, and documents since the studio opened in 2003. I’ve only been there for a year and half, but she’s been touching lives for over a decade and I’m so grateful for her and studio’s presence in my life.

…Naturally we had to celebrate our hard work over Thai food and wine :)

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(Diana on the left and  yogi Tifa on the right)

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(Tom Yum soup and red wine :) )

Finally, there’s  my entire family. They are there for me without fail. They love me even when I don’t feel like I deserve it. They spoiled me this Christmas and all chipped in to get  me a Vitamix for Christmas. If there was any hesitation in my fingers finding the keys the Vitamix sealed the deal. I mean when your family gives you a Vitamix you make recipes and blog (if you’re into that sort of thing of course). End of story.

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smoothie bowl

(My first Vitamix smoothie bowl)

More creations to come :)

I’m sure I’m forgetting people and things I am grateful for, but I’m sure it’ll come out in a later post along with the soups and nut butters I plan to make :)

Richmond Marathon Recap

Walking up and down the stairs is nearly impossible and my body is just plain exhausted but this past Saturday, on a cold but beautiful morning, I crossed the finish line of my third full marathon. After a series of stress fractures from 2012-2013 I wasn’t sure I’d ever be able to complete the 26.2 again. I’m proud to say I’m back in the game.

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Friday afternoon my parents picked me up from my apartment and we began the journey from Gaithersburg to Richmond in rush hour. My dad drove :) Just one of the many reasons I am grateful my parents decided to come along for the weekend.

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We met up with my sister Molly at our hotel right outside of Richmond in Henrico County, VA. My dad’s all about some Richmond and knew where to stay when all the downtown hotels were booked because of the race. Molly drove up from her school, East Carolina, early Friday and stopped by the Race Expo to get our bibs and some Gu since my parents and I figured we’d hit a ton of traffic on the way down. Molly ran her first half marathon like a champ and thoroughly enjoyed herself at her first race expo. I really wish I could have been there with her at the expo but we’ll plan better next time.

Three hours after we left Gaithersburg we finally arrived at our hotel to meet Molly and head to Carrabbas to get our carb loading on.

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Dinner before race night is tricky for me. It’s balance between splurging on carbs without over splurging on carbs. Not an easy task at Carrabbas. I played it safe and ordered grilled chicken and a small side of pasta.

 pre-race meal

Once we got back to the hotel after dinner Molly and I set out all of our race gear, collaborated on our workout playlists, and turned out the lights. Katie, my older sister, snuck in late at night because she had to work but wasn’t about to miss her opportunity to be a spectator (I may have also guilted her into coming)! When I say snuck in, I mean she was an overly energetic chatty Kathy we had to shut-up at 11:30 pm (love you Katie).

Running gear

Our alarm went off around 5:00 am and the nerves  began to kick in. I was happy to have my sisters around to distract me from my insecurities about the race. I had a plain blueberry bagel, banana, and two cups of coffee for breakfast. Molly opted for a half a banana, and an English muffin with peanut butter. Then we all headed to downtown Richmond at the intersection of 8th and West Broad street to start the race. The half marathon started 20 minutes before the full marathon on the opposite side of the street so I got to hang with Molly until she began!

runners

Once the half marathon runners took off I was left to my own devices. I placed myself somewhere between the 3:45 pace and the 3:50 pace groups and waited nervously as the national anthem played and runners flocked in.

When I started running my fears left me and I knew early on it was going to be a good race. My legs felt strong and rested, the weather crisp and my breathing was on point. I made a promise to myself in the first mile to remain at a steady, comfortable pace. I reminded myself to run my own race and not overshoot too early.

Miles 1-12 were comfortable, I was taking it all in, the city, the runners, and the Fall colors at their finest. It wasn’t until around mile 15 I needed to calm the crazy in my head. However, miles 19-21 were by far the toughest for me. There was still a significant amount of the race to conquer, my quads were burning, and I needed to find a way to zone out for the next hour. I kept my thoughts positive, thinking about how grateful I was to be able to run, again, how happy I was to have my family waiting for me at the finish, and how much I wanted the hard cider I would order at brunch. These thoughts got me through and by mile 22 I knew I was at the home stretch and I was going to finish the race. There is always uncertainty with a full marathon and I think anyone who has run one would agree that there comes a point in the race where you know your going to seal the deal and cross the finish. From that point on your mind eases and you let the race happen.

decide you want it

Mile 25 was by far the best. My favorite aspect of the Richmond Marathon was the downhill finish. Once the finish line was in view I was like a child on a rollercoaster flying down. I took off for it. My dad teased me afterward about how I couldn’t hear them cheering because I was so focused on the finish…what can I say? I had a goal. My final time was 3 hours and 53 minutes. I’ll take it :)

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I found my family, freezing, smiling, happy, proud, silly, exhausted. We headed straight for brunch after the race and you can bet I got my cider. Then we napped before hitting downtown Richmond to celebrate. It was amazing, probably one of the best weekends for the books.

Molly

Molly showing off her medal! She finished sub 2 hours like a champ!!

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(because celebrating together is a must )

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(Post-race victory meal)

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(a little less sweaty)

 

Meal and Mental Prep Monday

When my Nike app sang out “20 miles” a mix of relief, joy, and fear consumed me. The relief is obvious, my feet were tired from hearing from my mind, the joy came with the achievement but it’s the fear I want to talk about. Because when powerful leg muscles and strong lungs are in check, you still need to believe in yourself. I do not know if the fear is new or something I forgot because my last marathon was in 2011. All I know is the fear of 26.2 has arrived this time around.

While you are training for a race you keep telling yourself “you’ll get there with training”, but when your last training comes to an end you are left with the need to trust. You need confidence that on race day your feet and more importantly your mind will persevere and carry you through to the finish line. Anyone who has ever run a half marathon or full marathon understands the need to remain mentally strong.

The week before the race is about preparation.

For the mental prep I’ve been looking up mantras, you know the lines you tell yourself over and over to get through. Here’s what I found:

1 running mantra

  • Run the mile you are in!
  • Your legs aren’t giving out, your head is giving up, keep going!
  • It’s never too late to be who you might have been!
  • Breathe through it
  • Find your strong
  • This too shall pass
  • I believe in myself, I believe in my run
  • Sometimes the biggest problem is in your head, you gotta believe!

I’ve also been looking for some music to add to the race day playlist to help pull me through…

1. Ghost- Ella Henderson

2. Blank spaces Taylor Swift

3. In your arms: Nico and Vinz

Finally, I meal prepped. Like really prepped. I don’t want to leave the week before the race up to chance. SO I took a plunge and made six meals, a combination of dinners and lunches to eat throughout the week. I figured the best way to stay on top of my nutrition this week was to have it all planned out before I got rolling.

Meal Prep Monday

 

Proud to be Me

Hello and happy Saturday.

I have a special kind of post for you today that will carry on throughout November. In the spirit of Thanksgiving and being grateful, I am teaming up with women from the Sweat Pink community for a Proud to Be Me Campaign #Proudtobme.

proud to be me

Too often, we beat ourselves up thinking we aren’t enough. We let ideas of being smarter, prettier, richer, thinner, and happier, into our minds and it consumes us. I believe in bettering yourself, but not at the expense of loving yourself.

“You have been criticizing yourself for years, and it hasn’t worked. Try approving of yourself and see what happens.”

– Louise L. Hay

This month is about self–love. It’s about being proud of the person you are because to be grateful and love others we need to first love ourselves. Many of us are too humble. We were taught early to not brag, or talk about our accomplishments. But, a modest mindset masks our achievements. If we don’t give ourselves credit for the amazing things we do we end up focusing on everything we haven’t done yet. It creates dull picture of our lives and impedes on our confidence.

“A man cannot be comfortable without his own approval.”

– Mark Twain

So today I’m sharing that I LOVE my courageous personality. I do things, I learn from my mistakes, I come back stronger, and I love that about myself. I don’t do everything right the first time, I am not a perfectionist, but I’m a doer. I’m grateful that I am brave enough to try things without worrying if I can do them perfectly. By taking steps without seeing the full path I create  opportunities, I learn, and I grow.

self love

Each day this month you can find me tweeting, instagraming, and posting messages on the blog and Facebook about reasons I’m proud to be me #Proudtobeme.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/upearlywithamy

Twitter: @abortnick 

Instagram: Upearlywithamy

I won’t be alone, checkout some of the other awesome women playing along:

You can Join the movement too! What do you love about your personality?

You don’t have to write a blog or even post on social media to join. Write in a journal or at the very least make a conscious effort to acknowledge what makes you great :)

 

 

 

Apple Cinnamon Granola

Happy Tuesday friends, one day down and four more to go!

tuesday

I don’t know about you but, I’m anxious for the clocks to change this weekend because I’m tired of this dark nonsense in the morning. It is so much harder to get out of bed when the suns not on my schedule #diva. It’s a good thing I had Apple Cinnamon Granola to lure me out of bed this morning because I don’t think I would have gotten out otherwise. But this sweet, crunchy, fruity granola was calling my name so I answered.

Apple Cinnamon Granola

Apple Cinnamon Granola

Ingredients: 

  • 3 medium apples, peeled and sliced
  • 5 cups old fashioned oats
  • 3/4 cup honey
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 Tbsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ginger
  • 1 tsp nutmeg
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup crushed pecans
  • 1/2 cup cran-raisins

Directions: 

1. Pre-heat oven to 275 degrees

2. wash, peel, and slice apples into thin slices and lay them out on a baking sheet with wax paper. Bake them for 2 hours to dehydrate them into apple chips.

apple chips 2

Apple chips

3. Mix the rest of the ingredients, except the cran-raisins, together in a bowl until combined.

  • apple ingreidents

4. Spread the mixture on a baking sheet and bake in the oven with the apples at 275 for around 2 hours. Be sure to stir the granola every half hour or so to keep it from burning.

5. When the apples are done take them out and crunch them up!

 

apple chips 2

6. When the granola is done, combine it with the apples and the cran-raisins and voolaaa!!!

Apple cinnamon granola 2 Apple Cinnamon granola 3

Let the granola cool for around 20 minutes if you can resist. I’ve been known to burn my tongue #impatient. When you’re done you decide who to share it with :) I shared with my momma because she paid for the ingredients and she made me!