Happy SEPTEMBER, dear friends! We’re fast approaching my favorite season, but this has certainly been a good summer. August was especially good to us (minus a trip to urgent care!) with fun new finds, delicious recipes, devour-able books, beautiful hikes, AND a new addition to our little family!
It’s been exactly one year since our sweet Oliver passed away and we decided it was time to adopt a new fur baby. While a huge part of me wanted to rescue an adult cat since they tend to spend more time in shelters than kitties, BUT there’s something about a kid and a kitty. We found the perfect little guy, too! He was fostered with other kitties and a dog (which is a huge bonus since we’re planning to adopt a puppy in the very near future). So, without further ado….meet Moxie! He came with that name and Willow said we needed to keep it – he has certainly lived up to his name!
He’s bonded so well with both Willow AND Rockford ❤
And here are some photos that were captured during our hike at one of our favorite spots…Clear Lake:
Doesn’t this look like an elephant??!
If you read my previous post, you know my love for food in bowls and the ability to pile on the toppings…there’s a place called Bo’s Falafel Bar here in Bend and you choose to either have falafel in a pita OR in a bowl and then there’s a bar with LOTS of toppings to choose from! I added hummus, pickled beets, pickled onions, pickled cabbage, olives, PINK tahini, harissa, and heirloom tomatoes. HEAVEN. They offer a kid’s dish too with the same choice (pita or on a bed of greens)…we found out Willow loves pickled onions!
P R O D U C T S :
gomacro Maple Sea Salt and Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Protein Bars >> Found these two new flavors at Market of Choice and Natural Grocers. You’d never guess that they’re nut-free! The Maple Sea Salt has my heart!
Vegan Rob’s Probiotic Cauliflower Puffs >> Buy at your own risk! A random woman came up to me while shopping at Natural Grocers and told me I needed to try these. We got to talking and she was following a pretty similar “diet” as us and all of the raving about these puffs had me intrigued. Crunchy, airy, packed with flavor and the cauliflower taste….undetectable. Willow loves them, so I think that says a lot 😉
GT’S Pear Ginger Aqua Kefir >> I’m a sucker for all things ginger, so when I spotted this at Natural Grocers, we grabbed a bottle. So refreshing with a delicate flavor…the ginger outshines the pear, but delicious nonetheless.
innofoods Dark Chocolate Nuggets >> I knew these were going to be dangerous. And I knew I was asking for trouble when I actually bought a bag…but I have zero regrets. I’ve seen this at Costco for several months now, but finally tried them a few weeks ago. Sweet, salty, crunchy, CHOCOLATEY, and the coconut in here tastes like those delicious (addicting) salted caramel coconut chips that Dang or Bare makes??? You know what I’m talking about??? So there’s also a delicious caramel-y flavor in these nuggets. SO GOOD!
R E C I P E S :
Jackfruit Reuben Nourish Bowl >> Cadry’s Kitchen >> This was such a wonderful bowl of comfort food! And a new (and super creative) way to prepare jackfruit! Josh and I teamed up to make this recipe as there were a few different components….but we had SO much fun working together and the results were fabulous. Lots of different textures and flavors and Cadry’s thousand island dressing recipe was such a perfect way to top it off! Willow is now obsessed with thousand island! The only thing missing from this bowl was avocado…we’ve had THE worst luck with avos lately.
Buckwheat Chocolate Pudding >> Feasting on Fruit >> Found this gem on Natalie’s YouTube channel and was excited to try it! SO easy to whip up and while I had planned to let it chill in the fridge to firm up a bit, Willow couldn’t wait that long to dive in….so we dove in early! We swirled in some vanilla yogurt and I topped mine with fresh strawberries and cacao nibs. Highly recommend giving this a try!! Such a fun way to use buckwheat groats!
Hearty Oil-Free Chili >> The Vegan 8 >> It’s been AGES since I’ve made and eaten chili, but being able to eat legumes again makes this possible. And what a perfect reintroduction! This chili was AMAZING! We topped it with the Lemon Cream Sauce she links in her recipe and served up some roasted potato wedges on the side. I did cut back significantly on the chili powder because I wanted Willow to be able to try it….and I’m so glad I did because she had two small bowls worth and declared it “delicious!”
SunButter Chocolate Chip Cookies >> Feasting on Fruit >> Do I even need to write a review??? SunButter in a chocolate chip cookie??! These were devoured insanely fast. I adored the texture – crispy and chewy. Definitely adding these into our cookie rotation! Next time I want to make them and turn them into ice cream sandwiches – that needs to happen before summer is over!
B O O K S :
Spinning Silver by Naomi Novik >> A fun YA fantasy book filled with magic and great characters. I especially loved how the author captured the atmosphere in this book…I could easily close my eyes and see the world.
Magpie Murders by Anthony Horowitz >> If you love British mystery and a good “whodunnit,” I highly recommend Anthony Horowitz! I’ve also read The Word is Murder and The Sentence is Death and I have to say, he is incredibly clever, borderline genius. Keeps you guessing and turning the pages! I love the humor laced throughout and the fact that it isn’t loaded with gory graphic details. Huge thumbs up from me!
Ask Again, Yes by Mary Beth Keane >> I loved this book for so many reasons, but the main one being how it made me feel. It was definitely a “heavier” book, but so beautiful and it forced me to think about what I would have done if I were in these characters situations. Books that make me think and feel are ones I gravitate towards. If you enjoyed Where the Crawdads Sing or A Place for Us, I think you’d like Ask Again, Yes.
Easy Peasy: Gardening for Kids by Kirsten Bradley >> Such a wonderful book filled with beautiful illustrations and step-by-step instructions for various projects. I love how the author also added in some educational facts/tips throughout. Willow has so enjoyed making the seed envelopes and has added this book to her “must buy” list.
The Secrets of Lost Stones by Melissa Payne >> I wouldn’t necessarily say this was a “favorite” book of mine, but it captured my interest and had me turning the pages. Likable characters and a few twists in the story. I also seem to enjoy books with some supernatural elements and this had it. I got this one for free via Kindle First Reads.
The Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo by Taylor Jenkins Reid >> This might have been my favorite book that I read in August! I could not put it down! No joke, I was hooked in right away and the author held my interest all the way through. I felt like I was reading about a real actress and her life…like I could hop onto Google and learn more. But this is fiction. The characters are fictional, yet it felt SO real. And with each chapter, I fell more in love with Evelyn Hugo (and a couple other characters). I loved getting a sense of the old Hollywood glamour and the price of fame. HIGHLY recommend!!
The Last Ocean: A Journey through Memory and Forgetting by Nicci Gerrard >> This is a tricky one to talk about and the only non-fiction book in this post for the month. It’s heavy, depressing, but thought-provoking and beautifully written…poetic at times. Had it not been a library book that I borrowed, I would have taken a highlighter to so much of it. The author lost her father to dementia and she discusses her experience along with interviews with others (people who have lost a loved one AND those living with dementia). She touches on things I hadn’t considered and opened my eyes to just how prevalent this horrific disease is. I know (and knew) people close to me who lived with this diagnosis and this book helped me to shift my perspective and to gain better insight in regards to the person battling it.
As always, I would love to hear from you and what your current favorites are!
Thanks for stopping by!