Grain-free Peach Cobbler

Monday, July 28, 2014

This recipe is inspired by Primally Inspired Berry cobbler recipe. 

There are times when I get a burning desire to cook something comforting. I've dramatically changed the way I eat, and so I'm having to look for recipes that please my taste buds, but is filled with ingredients that will make my body feel good, not bloated and gross after I eat it. With that said, I had tons of peaches sitting on my counter, waiting to be devoured. Naturally I decided on Peach Cobbler, because, well, it's all I could think of to make and it's delicious

 Peach Cobbler 
Grain-Free, Gluten-Free, Nut-Free, Soy-Free, vegan

 6 ripe Peaches, peeled and cut ( remember these are on the dirty dozen list, so make sure and get organic!)
 Juice from half a lemon
4 eggs
 1/4 cup of Coconut Palm Sugar + a little to sprinkle on top
2 tsp vanilla ( I just splash a little in there--no need to be picky!)
 1/4 cup pure, organic Honey 
 1/2 cup Coconut flour
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/4 cup coconut oil ( you can use grass-fed butter if you'd like)
1 tsp Baking Soda 
1/4 tsp of Cinnamon
 Pinch of Salt

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. First, cut up your precious peaches and place them in a bowl and add your coconut sugar. Pour into a medium-sized saucepan and add juice of half a lemon. Let this simmer until the peaches reduce and make a lot of juice ( mine was on med-high heat). 

In the mean time, mix together eggs, coconut oil, vanilla, honey and coconut milk.  Once that's all combined, you can go ahead and add the coconut flour, baking soda, cinnamon and pinch of salt. This will be the batter we're going to spread ontop of the

 Next, pour the peaches that have been simmering on the stove in a glass baking dish, then spread your batter evenly over the top of the peaches. Sprinkle some coconut sugar ontop, and pop it in the oven for 35 minutes or until the top is completely golden brown, and the middle doesn't give when touched.

Isn't it lovely?

You can't forget the best part, though: Coconut Whipped Cream

Coconut Whipped Cream 

1 can of full fat coconut milk
a drizzle of honey
splash of vanilla

Put coconut milk in the fridge overnight or for as long as you can. Most cans of coconut milk will separate the coconut fat and the water, so you can scrape out all the solids from the top; however, mine didn't do that.--mine didn't separate at all, but it was thick. I just whipped mine in an electric mixture (takes some elbow grease) until I felt like it had the right consistency. You can play around with how much honey and vanilla you want in it. Maple syrup would work, too! All I can say is that it was delicious and didn't make me miss "real" whipped cream at all.

Tip: It's a good idea to put it in the freezer for a little bit before you serve; it helps keep it more solid.


Thursday, July 24, 2014


Saturday Rory and I had plans to go to Sequoia National Park to do some hiking. Sadly, that got cancelled because Rory has been incredibly busy with work lately and he needed to stay in cell phone service in case he received any phone calls. Rory works for an Organic Produce company and they're incredibly busy this time of year. I really love how much he loves his job. The people he works with are pretty great, too. Anyways, I digress. 

Long story short, Rory and I ended up deciding we would spend the day in a city about an hour in a half away from us. When I got to Rory's house he told me he had come up with something fun for us to do while we're there, but he wasn't going to tell me what it was. That man knows that I love surprises, and he gets a kick out of me constantly questioning what we're doing.  About halfway there he gave me a hint and handed over some protective glasses. " uhh...are we shooting something"? Rory then pulled out these hot pick ear muff's. Okay, I'm pretty sure they're not called ear muffs, but I have no idea what else to call them, so we'll just go with ear muff's. At this point I knew we were going to be shooting guns and I was exciting, but honestly a bit nervous. I've never been a huge fan of guns, because they sort-of terrify me.  I was totally up for the experience, though, because I like doing things that put me out of my comfort zone--this girl stays in her little bubble way too often. The whole way there Rory was going over the 4 rules of gun safety, and you better believe I had those memorized by the time we got there. Rory cracks me up, because that brain of his is full of all sorts of information and I have no idea where it comes from.  He probably learned those rules when he was like a 10 and can still remember them to this day.  I would appreciate a brain like his; it's like a sponge that soaks up everything effortlessly. Darn you, Rory. 

The place Rory and I went to was an indoor shooting range. The people were incredibly helpful and nice, and made the experience even better just because of how friendly they were. They didn't look at me like I was some silly girl trying to shoot a gun. The first shot was nerve wracking and I swear my hands were sweating profusely as I was loading the bullets into the gun. I was totally terrified that I was going to accidentally hit the trigger as I was preparing the gun.  Once I got the hang of it (I'm going to toot my own horn here for a second)...I kicked butt! I hit the center of the target that we had 9 times out of 10. I was honestly really shocked at how good I was at it. I'll definitely be going back sometime in the future to give it a go again. 

After we were done at the shooting range, we were completely starved and decided to get some In N Out. I apologize for those who don't have one where they live, because you're missing out on the best burger and fries out there. I got mine protein and animal style, and of course splurged on some of their delicious fries. I'm bummed they fry their stuff in vegetable oils, but I guess I can't be too picky. It's a nice treat every once in awhile.

Have a great week, my friends! 

Lovely things

Monday, July 14, 2014

1. Milani lipstick in Flamingo Pose:  This has hands down turned into my favorite lipstick this summer. This lipstick has beat any NARS or MAC lipstick that I own. The staying power is ridiculously long and the color pay off is incredible. I promise you I wear this every single day; it's very bold, but totally wearable, which is why I like it. 

2. Coconut Oil: I use coconut oil every single day without fail. I use it when I cook pretty much anything that requires oil. Not only that but coconut oil makes an amazing hair mask, moisturizer for your face and/or body, and I also use it to make my own deodorant. 

3. Witch Hazel: I use Witch Hazel and Tea Tree oil as a toner on my face and I love it! Witch Hazel has amazing benefits that helps your skin. I've also heard that it can be used to help reduce the appearance of varicose veins (which I'm going to try, because unfortunately I'm starting to see veins in my legs. Boo!). 

4. Baking Soda: It might seem really odd to you that I included baking soda in the list of things I can't live without, but it really is an essential part of my day because it keeps me from smelling :) I use baking soda, coconut oil, and some essential oils as my deodorant; it works wonders! Another thing I've used baking soda for recently is removing stains from the carpet. I'll pour vinegar onto the stain and sprinkle a generous amount of baking soda over it; it'll soak up anything that you spill, animal accidents, etc..and it takes the smell out of the carpet as well. It's a miracle worker, really. 

5. Tea tree oil: As stated earlier, I use this and Witch Hazel as my toner every day. I love this stuff!

6. Not Your Mothers Dry Shampoo:  I tend to only wash my hair once every 5 or 6 days. I'm serious. Washing your hair too often is really bad for your hair, and it sometimes will actually cause your hair to get greasier faster. With that said, I only wash my hair when absolutely necessary, which tends to be about every 5 or 6 days. This helps me go longer without washing my hair--I love this stuff! 

7. Elf Blush and Bronzer Duo: I used to buy the blush/brozer duo from NARS, which is like $50. This is pretty much the exact same thing for $3. Needless to say, I quit buying the one from NARS. 

The great love with which He loved us.

Friday, July 11, 2014

I have some very special people in my life who suffer greatly with guilt and shame--In fact, this guilt and shame has completely separated them from their church family, because they don't feel worthy of stepping into a church, knowing how "terrible" they are. I have a lot of compassion for these people, because they're clearly not understanding grace--not just grace, but God's grace. If you're not understanding Grace, then chances are you don't have the correct understanding of who God is, why Christ died for us and who we are in Him. 

I know this, because I've been this person before. I wasn't planning on sharing this on my blog, because I don't like to bring up my semi-rebellious past ( okay, maybe wasn't just semi), but it seemed necessary for the topic of discussion.  Not many people know this, but I went through a phase where I smoked. It wasn't a very long phase, thankfully, but it was still something that I struggled with. I didn't want people to know about it, because I felt like it would change the way everyone viewed me. I was so ashamed of it. I would sit outside, read my bible and smoke a cigarette and think to myself  " Seriously, Allyssa...what are you doing!" I wasn't really going to church at the time, but I was in biblical counseling with a precious woman who God used tremendously in my life.  It was around that time in my life where God really began to teach me who I am in Him and how much I needed to be a part of the church body. My view of who God was completely changed. He wasn't a scary man who I needed to constantly be perfect for; he was full of grace, compassionate and loved me despite my wrongdoings. I began to realize that it wasn't my smoking that was the problem, it was my sinful nature that I was fighting against. I needed to work on my heart first, and then the rest would fall into place. And you know what? God totally started to transform my life and started working on me from the inside out.

 " And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience--among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind...." 

"But God....

Being rich in mercy. 

Because of the great love with which he loved us,

even when we were dead in our trespasses,

made us alive together in Christ

by grace you have been saved...."

Ephesians 2: 1-5

He is RICH in mercy because he loves us, not because of anything we've done or because for one reason or another we deserve it, but because he has chosen to love us. What a loving and compassionate God! Doesn't that give you a desire to walk in obedience?

Everything begins to change when you realize what Christ did for you, and who you are now because of it. Christ died so that you don't have to live in that shame. He suffered, so that we don't have to--yet there are still people out there who believe they have to do the hokie pokie before God will accept them--that's not how it works--God accepts you just as you are. God has a purpose for your life, and you know what? Sometimes that purpose is going through hard stuff so that we'll recognize how desperate we are for him.

" For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption
that is Christ Jesus, whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood,
to be received by faith..."

Romans 3:23-25

I think scripture says it all.  Even when I was going through my smoking phase, God still saw me as righteous and never once did he stop loving me. The truth is, we're all terrible people apart from Christ--no one is good, not even one! This isn't to say that we should just keep on sinning because God forgives us anyway, instead, this gives us all the more reason to worship Him. Why? Because we don't deserve this grace--I know I don't. But because of the great love with which he loved us, he has given us the greatest gift of all, and for that we should never cease to praise Him. 

Just a thought :)

Happy Friday, friends! 

Paleo Lemon Blueberry Cheesecake

Monday, July 7, 2014

  This Lemon Blueberry cheesecake is stinkin' amazing! You know what else is amazing about this cheesecake? It's gluten free, dairy free, soy free, egg free and the only sugar involved is coconut sugar, honey and juice from the blueberries. I know what you're thinking--cheesecake without dairy? Yes, it's possible--even better, it's really, really good!

 I wouldn't consider this to be super low on calories, because it's actually pretty calorically dense, due to all the nuts involved; however, it's does contain more nutrition than a "normal" cheesecake does. Either way, consider it a treat! It's perfect for those emotional days. haha! I'm only kidding..kinda.

 There are several recipes online for Paleo cheesecake, and I got really overwhelmed with trying to decide which one to use--instead I got an idea of everything I would need to actually make it work and then made it up as I went. I admit, I'm really excited about how great this crust turned out. The crust is AMAZING and it comes out of the pan flawlessly--it's an overall win if you ask me.


Tp: Click on the pictures of the recipes, the picture will pop up, and you'll be able to see the recipe clearer.


Wednesday, July 2, 2014

      Happy Wednesday, everyone! Aren't you so happy we're halfway through the week? I sure am! Our Corporate office is closed on Friday,too, which means I don't have to work--obviously that's a giant win for me. Do other companies take the fourth of July off? I don't even know. I'm presuming most do. 

+ VBS came and went really fast. It was such an encouraging time for me and hopefully for the kids, too. The picture above is of me and my sister, by the way. I love her to pieces. She's been the most influential person in my life. One day I'll write a post about her. She deserves her own post, because she's that amazing. 

+ I finished my 21 day's of clean eating! You guys, it wasn't that hard at all. The most challenging part was during vbs when they fed us food every single night, because I couldn't eat most of the stuff that they had, so I stuck with dry salad and whatever type of meat they had. There towards the end I was really starting to crave a pizza, though. So, to celebrate, that's what I did! I felt horrible afterwards, though. I always knew I felt really gross after I ate pizza ( or any kind of bready food), but I never realized just how bad it was until I cut bread out of my life. No joke, I felt 6 months pregnant. It was really good pizza, though, even if it did make me incredibly bloated and uncomfortable.

 I've had people asking me what I'm going to do now that I'm done with the challenge, and truthfully, I'm going to just stick with it.  I feel way too good to add processed food, sugar, and gluten back into my diet on a regular basis. Every once in a while, yes, because I have to be realistic, but for the most part, I'll continue eating paleo. 

[excuse my red eyes; it always happens to me]

+Saturday night I went to a dance recital with my friend Melanie, which was amazing. The dancers were incredible. The only thing that really bothered me about it was that every single outfit throughout the entire recital ( which was more than 2 hours long..) made them look like they were half naked--no more than half.  Even the little girls were half naked, and then they were dancing up there,shaking it like Biance. I know that comes with the territory of being a dancer, but it just really urked me, and then you see all their dads watching them in the audiance. Does that bother anyone else? Maybe it's just me. 

+I had a random desire to have herbs in my kitchen window, so I did it. I bought some really cheap pots, spray painted them with chalkboard paint and planted my herbs. I started out with these two, but I plan on getting some cilantro and thyme, as well. It's so fun to cook with your own herbs! 

Since being on the 21 days of clean eating challenge, I had to cut out anything artificial in my diet, which included stevia ( The stuff in the packs isn't really natural. If you're growing a stevia plant in your backyard, then that would be considered natural). I was one of those people who had to have some sort of sweetener in my coffee, or else I couldn't drink it. I ended up with just coffee and heavy cream. It took some getting used to, but now I don't want it any other way. Funny how that works. 

I hope you all have a great rest of the week and a fabulous 4th of July! 

You are Loved

Friday, June 27, 2014

 Tonight is the last of VBS. I'm totally pooped, but it's been worth it. See all those little girls in the picture above? They're making memories. Precious memories. We've had such a good time this week. Yesterday we shared the gospel with the kids in our classroom, and for whatever reason, the kids payed more attention to that than they did any game we've ever played. We talked about the creation of the world, the fall of man, Jesus' death on the cross for our sin and the Resurrection. Rory and I had planned a game to play afterwards for the last class ( the older kids), but we didn't make it to games. The kids were asking so many questions. 

"But how did sin come to be?"

"What does the bread mean when we take communion?" 

" How come God just doesn't take sin away?" 

" Where did the devil come from"?

I was flabbergasted by how interested they were, and how intently they listened to Rory as he explained it all to them with the biggest smile on his face.  My heart was completely overflowing. We ended up having to tell them it was time to go, because they would have kept asking questions all night. 

I kept finding myself wondering where these kids would be in 10 years, praying that they remember all of this and continue having a desire for God and His word. The world is a tough place to be in, and I want more than anything for them to realize how much Jesus loves them. I want them to turn to Him when they're hurt, and to know that Jesus is the ultimate comforter. When something doesn't go the way they plan it to go, I want them to trust that god will take care of them and that He has a plan that is greater than theirs. 

Needless to say, this week has been a huge encouragement to me. The lack of sleep and complete exhaustion has been more than worth it.  It's also pretty great that I get to do all of this with Rory; it's really special to be able to be by his side while we're teaching little ones about Jesus. I'm feeling really blessed. 

I hope you all have a great weekend!

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