Spiced Greek Yogurt

I’ve got my brain working and thought up another recipe for fall. Instead of having cereal or a piece of toast or plain yogurt or nothing for breakfast, why not try some spiced yogurt? It’s full of protein and healthy fats. Here we go…

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Spiced Greek Yogurt

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Any Greek yogurt

Liquid sweetener (optional. Use if you want a sweeter yogurt.)

Ground ginger, ground cloves, ground nutmeg, ground cardamom, ground cinnamon (*use a pumpkin pie spice mix if you don’t have each individual spice or want the recipe to be a lot easier to make*)

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Mix together the yogurt and a VERY small amount of each of the spices, or a couple shakes of a pre-mixed pumpkin pie spice. If you’re using individual spices, take caution in adding only a VERY small amount. (If it’s overdone, the yogurt will taste similar to the smell of Hobby Lobby around Christmas and Thanksgiving. ) Add a dime-sized amount of liquid sweetener. I used agave syrup, but honey will give the yogurt a better flavor. Mix again and top with nuts. Enjoy!

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This is really simple to make, and if you want to have some in the morning before work or school, make a larger batch on the weekend and store it in your fridge.

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My Favorite Kind of Weather…

The weather has finally been getting colder! I went out on a walk before school and took some pictures.

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My favorite fall tea is pictured second. It’s like cider in a bag! It’s the Hot Apple Cider Tea by Republic of Tea. Speaking of favorites, I’m thinking about doing a monthly Favorites Post with my favorite nail polish, hand cream, hair product, school subject, tea, snack, movie, and song.

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Above are some nature photos I took on early morning walks, along with some pictures from my life: my dog, an antique coffee box, and our family’s aprons.

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I will be sharing a recipe soon! Maybe a nice cider.

Happy 4th of July

I just wanted to post an Independence Day recipe today! This fruit salad is perfect for cookouts and small parties.
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Red, White, and Blue Fruit Salad
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You’ll need:
1 can of whipped cream
1 1/2 cups washed, fresh blueberries
1 1/2 cups washed, fresh, and cut strawberries
a large bowl for preparing and one for serving
a large spoon for mixing and one for serving
1 or 2 mint sprig for garnish
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Gently combine the blueberries and strawberries in a bowl. Add 1 1/2 cup’s worth of whipped cream. Mix carefully. Empty into serving bowl. Garnish with extra whipped cream and mint sprig(s). Chill and serve cold. Enjoy!
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This recipe is sort of based on a family recipe that we’ve used for Christmas, birthdays, and other holidays. The version we make uses grapes, melon, strawberries, and other fruit. Also, freezing this recipe will make a great frozen dessert.
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Have a great 4th of July!

Over the Weekend

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This weekend, I stayed with my dad and brother in a hotel. Some of the things we did included eating a burrito out of a styrofoam coffee cup, watching more than one Harry Potter movie, and in the process, I neglected my blog! Aah! Well, now I have something to write about. We walked around an outdoor mall. First of all, we got to watch a full grown man put himself into a small plastic box, then we moved on to  different shops. Later on (after my brother bought himself a giant multi-colored balloon hat, of course) we went into a place that did henna tattoos. I got one on my arm and I love it! The woman rubbed my arm with henna oil, then drew the tattoo, and finally sprayed it with a lemon sugar water mix. I noticed that the woman who did it had a green cone that held the henna ink. Now that I think about it, I remember seeing something just like it at the Indian grocery. Guess who will be experimenting with that…? A henna tattoo, two bags of taffy, a giant balloon hat, and three taco bowls later, we left. What a weekend.

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Chive + Onion Cream Dip

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You’ll need:

1 cup cream cheese

2 tablespoons blue, feta, or any other special soft cheese

1 teaspoon dried, chopped chives

1/2 teaspoon onion powder

1/8 teaspoon garlic powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

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In a large bowl, whip together the cream cheese and soft cheese using a rubber spatula, whisk, or hand-held electronic whisk. Slow whipping speed and add chopped chives, onion and garlic powder, and salt. Serve with potato chips. Enjoy!

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This recipe is great for summer get-togethers or anytime of the year. Until later! 🙂

Thrift Stores, Pictures, and Cinnamon Rolls

A few days ago, we went to a giant thrift store to donate. And no, it didn’t stop there. We decided to look around. A couple hours later, we emerged, carrying 3 full plastic sacks of goodies. There’s nothing wrong with that — we donate 4 full bags and buy 3 full bags. Here are some key benefits of thrift shopping…:

  1. You can find some unique and quirky things.
  2. You can buy a few bag’s worth of clothing and spend 1/4 of the amount you would in a department store.
  3. Buying from thrift stores usually goes to a charity.
  4. When you donate at certain stores, you receive a discount on your next purchase.
  5. It’s fun!!

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In the end, I walked out with a cute Merona jean jacket, a pretty scarf, a unique wood carved elephant candle holder, a blue and white Asian vase, a record of Russian folk music for displaying, (I have 2 in my collection, and the records they sell at this store are 49 cents), and a pair of almost-new Dansko sandals that were a bargain at $6.99!

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I have been doing less editing lately, but I did manage to do a few. This one is my favorite. (There is a tutorial for this hair style/curling method coming up, right after I post the hair bow DIY.)

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photo 1

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Yesterday, my mom made gluten free, dairy free cinnamon rolls, and they tasted amazing. She made a butter pecan frosting to go with it. You kind of have to taste them to understand how great they are, especially for being gluten free. We all have celiac, so cooking gluten free is a necessity for us. (Learn more about her cooking skills here.) If you participate in this poll, then I can post more recipes with your food allergies or sensitivities in mind!

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Yesterday’s Happenings

Yesterday, after school and hanging out with friends, we went to an Indian grocery store. Here is my quick narrative.

Upon walking in, there were shelves and shelves of lentils and beans, some of which I recognized. As we walked onward, taking our time, there were a few shelves of amaranth and peanut balls, made with jaggery, or molasses, and similar balls made with puffed rice. There were starchy-looking translucent cubes of various sizes, some tiny and others large. I asked my mom what they were, and she said it was sugar. We made our way onto the sugar-coated fennel seeds. I remember eating these at a different Indian grocery when I was younger. Then we found some rose water. I know this is used for Indian cooking, but I have yet to try it. Adjacent to the rose water were bottled fruit juices, unrefrigerated. We turned and found pappadums. We’d had these many times before with channa masala for dinner, and they are delicious!!! They are smallish, thin, papery pieces that you fry in oil. The pappadums we bought were made of urid flour and rice flour. In a refrigerator there were desserts and juices. Mango juice, papaya juice, and best of all, lychee juice. I LOVE LYCHEE. Further on, we found a rich supply of incenses and statues of Ganesha. Since we already have incense at home, we moved towards the produce. There was methi, ginger, a giant white root of some kind (not a parsnip or anything), chili peppers, fresh coriander, or cilantro, spinach, potatoes, eggplant, and unripe, green bananas. Next to the produce were frozen goods including frozen methi and lotus root. (I have to try lotus root; I have now seen it twice in two different stores.) There was ice cream, but they called it something else, with pistachios, and samosas. To the right of that was about 5 shelves of Indian shampoos, soaps, and lotions. I recalled having a spectacular shampoo bought from an Indian grocery, but I couldn’t find it there. There were more and more shelves of things like tamarind, drink mixes, and spices. We picked up a dessert called karachi halwa, almond jelly, with cashews and almonds. Indian desserts are very interesting. They aren’t too sweet, and you can taste the coriander and spices that they use in saag paneer and channa masala and other foods. We checked out, in the end buying:

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  • karachi halwa
  • turmeric powder
  • ginger powder
  • potatoes
  • baby eggplant
  • mint
  • lemons
  • frozen methi
  • a large container of dates (we love dates)
  • golden raisins
  • salted fennel seeds (mmm!)
  • dal lentils
  • paneer
  • lychee juice
  • mango juice
  • peanut laddoo (the amaranth peanut balls)

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It’s an invigorating experience to shop in a specialty store like that, with all kinds of unusual and exciting foods. My advice to the shopper who goes to the same place every time you shop for groceries: Go to an Indian grocery. Trust me — you definitely won’t regret it!

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The Scribbling Pixie’s Fantastic Idea

Try 6 new foods in the next week, no matter how strange or weird they look! And don’t go to your regular store to buy them. Look for a specialty store!

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