Homemade Granola

Homemade Granola--Recipe at: stephanie-spring.com Homemade Granola--Recipe at: stephanie-spring.com Homemade Granola--Recipe at: stephanie-spring.comRight as I got into soup, sweaters, and socks… it hits almost 80 degrees. It’s November and in our neck of the woods that is not exactly common. But for a girl who dreams of 90 degree days, pools, and sunshine… this is the life. One day I crave a salad and the next I want to cuddle up next to a fire and eat soup. I needed to find a happy medium food that would settle all this moody weather… and let me tell you, I think I may have hit the jackpot. I am completely guilty of eating this almost all day long with no shame. My logic is if I have it with milk for breakfast, then with yogurt for lunch, and then graze on it by the handful all by itself an hour later, then it is acceptable. Wishful thinking? It’s addictive in the best way possible. The great this is…it’s a guilty pleasure you don’t have to feel guilty about.

Homemade Granola--Recipe at: stephanie-spring.com


Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup shredded coconut
  • 3 cups rolled oats
  • 3/4 cup ground flax
  • 3/4 cup slivered almonds
  • 1 cup walnuts
  • 1 5 o.z package crasins or raisins
  • 1 1/2 cup natural, raw honey
  • 3/4 cup coconut oil
  • 1 1/2 tbsp cinnamon

What to do:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Mix all dry ingredients together in a large bowl. Bring honey, coconut oil, and cinnamon to a boil in a small saucepan and remove from heat. Immediately, pour the wet mixture over the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly. Spread mixture on a greased baking sheet. (I lightly rubbed the baking sheet with butter). You can also use parchment paper for a much easier clean up! Bake in oven for about 30 minutes. Stir every five minutes so the bottom doesn’t burn.


 


Shhh… I’m Listening


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When a person is talking, we catch ourselves (or maybe we aren’t even aware), from time to time, thinking of what we are going to say next. We might be thinking how we can respond, relate, pick apart, or advise this person on whatever the subject is they may be talking about.

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But lately, I’ve tried something new.

Listening…

…by really and truly blocking my mind from thinking of a million other things–or even why this person is telling me such a story and just take time to listen.

…by repeating and trying to understand what the person is really trying to tell me and why they are telling me.

…really listening to my family, friends, students, and people I encounter on a daily basis.

I find myself falling back into the pattern of thinking of a million other things when someone is talking to me.  I have to stop and remind myself that practice forms habits. And habits help make you who you are. For the better or worse.

These days, I’m trying to make it for the better, and I think listening might just be the place to start.

Taco Soup

Taco Soup stephanie-spring.com

Sunday afternoons are meant for pajamas, blankets, friends, family, food and football.

That being said, let me introduce you to…

Taco soup.

Seriously. This is a super easy, anytime meal. You can’t go wrong here.


Ingredients: 

  • 1 pound lean hamburger
  • 2 large tomatoes, cut and cubed
  • 1 package taco seasoning, I chose mild
  • 1  10 oz. can tomato soup
  • 1 10 oz. can dark kidney beans
  • 1 10 oz. can of corn or a cup and a half of fresh corn
  • Mexican cheese mix and gluten free blue corn tortilla chips for topping!

What to do: 
In a large deep dish pan, cook the hamburger until it is lightly brown. Add the tomatoes, tomato soup, kidney beans, and corn to the cooked hamburger and cook for an additional 25 minutes on medium-medium high heat. Add the taco seasoning, stir together, and remove from heat.
Top with cheese upon serving. Use chips for dipping or they are great crushed on top.
*This is also a great freezer meal.


If you and I were to have coffee: Part 1

Coffee

Now that we established that…

If you and I were to have coffee…


I’d tell you to add some pumpkin spice creamer in it. It’s fall and it’s almost a sin if you don’t taste pumpkin in one way or another. 😉

If you and I were to have coffee…

I’d tell you to pick up your phone and call your Grandparents. It may be slightly awkward, it may be something you don’t do often, and it may be something that is a weekly to-do. Either way they will love it.

If you and I were to have coffee…

I’d express my love for this little space and how special the connections I’ve made have been already.

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If you and I were to have coffee…

I’d tell you to without a doubt, go to J Crew get this winter coat, here.

If you and I were to have coffee…

I’d say to sneak in one Christmas song on your ride to work. It will put an extra hop in your step.

If you and I were to have coffee…

I’d reminisce about Greece and Italy and how the travel bug has bitten me HARD.

If you and I were to have coffee…

I’d talk about how I miss watching Oprah and when i was younger I was convinced I would somehow make it onto at least one of her giveaways. 

If you and I were to have coffee…

We’d talk about family, friendships, and marriage and the beauty of it all. How much hard work goes into all of it but how absolutely beautiful it really is. 

If you and I were to have coffee…

I’d ask you what matters most to you in life and where do you see yourself in five years? After all, time flies when you’re having fun. 😉 

Bittersweet

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March of 2011, I left for a life-changing study abroad trip to Greece. There were a total of seven girls in my apartment and we decided to pull names to determine who we were going to room with. I was beyond blessed to room with a girl who actually went to the same college as me, but I hadn’t known. I could, and will write an entire post(s) dedicated to everything I have learned, recommend, and pictures of living in Greece but friends… this lovely girl, Mace introduced me to a book that has changed my life.


Bittersweet
Ladies! If there is one book that I talk about non-stop, re-read over and over again, and that has gotten me through some very low times, it would be this one. This author, this book, this gem.

“The idea of bittersweet is changing the way I live, unraveling and re-weaving the way I understand life. Bittersweet is the idea that in all things there is both something broken and something beautiful, that there is a moment of lightness on even the darkest of nights, a shadow of hope in every heartbreak, and that rejoicing is no less rich even when it contains a splinter of sadness. ‘It’s the practice of believing that we really do need both the bitter and the sweet, and that a life of nothing but sweetness rots both your teeth and your soul. Bitter is what makes us strong, what forces us to push through, what helps us earn the lines on our faces and the calluses on our hands. Sweet is nice enough, but bittersweet is beautiful, nuanced, full of depth and complexity. Bittersweet is courageous, gutsy, audacious, earthy.”

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It’s one of those books that just got me, and I can guarantee as a woman, it will “get” you on at least one level. If God decides to bless us with children one day, more specifically a girl, I will be introducing this book to her early on. Shauna Niequist is a brilliant author who reached my heart and soul through thoughts of change, grace, and learning the hard way. She is an inspiration to all women with her vulnerability and honesty, not to mention her wonderful recipes. I have already gifted this book to multiple women of all ages and different stages of life. Go buy this book today for yourself and a friend. Read it. Get coffee. Talk about it. You will not be disappointed.

Buy it here.

 

What are some of your go-to books?