Stylish, Stealthy & Healthy.


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Cranberry Almond Coconut Granola and a Reoccurring Dream

I had my most frequently reoccurring dream last night. It’s the one where I’m back in college and I cannot find my class schedule anywhere. Students are racing by me with their books in hand, chatting and laughing without a care in the world, and I am panicked and near tears, not knowing where I’m supposed to be.

cranberry coconut granola 1

The campus is always different, the random people that make cameos change almost every time, and the reason I can’t find my schedule is never the same. But that feeling of unpreparedness I know all to well.

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Obviously I have issues of feeling like I don’t have my ish together, which totally makes sense for a number of reasons. Firstly, I am one of those awful people who is always late. I know. I’M SORRY! I mean, it’s usually no more than 5 minutes, but still, it’s terrible. I’m also a complete procrastinator and put everything off until the very last second. I’m also a grade A bullshitter and am pretty good at coming up with things that sound good enough to get me by when needed, but almost never know for sure that what I just said made sense. (I think most “writers” probably have this lovely trait, one that I graciously attribute my many years of performance in English class.)

So this is why I love this recipe: I pretty much never remember to eat breakfast since I’m always a whirlwind of coats and purses and coffee mugs and keys in the morning (see above). I usually keep granola bars in my desk, but am always running out and left with a loquacious stomach in the morning. So naturally, I’m drawn to things I can whip up on the weekends and use to keep myself satiated for a least a few days the following week. Enter this lovely granola.

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Just sweet enough that it feels like I’m treating myself, delightful atop a yogurt (if I remember it) and hearty enough to eat on its own. It also fits nicely in your purse so that you’re always prepared.

Cranberry Almond Coconut Granola
servings: 10
cook/prep time: 40 minutes
You’ll Need:
2 cups rolled oats (I used gluten free, but it’s your call)
1/4 cup chopped almonds
1/4 cup shredded coconut
3 T coconut oil
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/4 tsp cinnamon
2 T chia seeds
Pinch salt
Pinch of sugar on top if you like a little added sweetness
1/4 cup dried cranberries

Directions: Preheat your oven to 325. In a bowl, combine oats, almonds, coconut, chia seeds and cinnamon. Melt coconut oil and stir in maple syrup, then drizzle over the oat mixture and toss until combined. Spread out evenly on a baking sheet and sprinke with salt. Bake for about 15 minutes, stir, (sprinkle with sugar here if you want to) and bake for another 10-15, or until golden brown. Allow to cool and add cranberries.

Printer-Friendly Recipe

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Believe it or not, this is the first time I ever made my own granola. I’ve always just relied on store-bought, but frankly it’s pretty expensive and the choices are kind of limited, especially if you are trying to keep the gluten out of it. Either way, I’m totally hooked now and excited to try some new combos. Hopefully tonight I can dream of some of them and not wake up in a cold sweat wondering if I packed the right books for Chem lab.

Am I the only person who has this weirdo nightmare?


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Christmas is Over and I’m Feeling 32

Hello, friends. It’s me! Jessica! (Remember the movie “The Hot Chick”? If not you will not get that reference.)

Anywho. Another Christmas has come and gone, and I’m already ready to take down all the Christmas decor. I love a lit tree at night, but I also hate clutter and this snowman cookie jar on my breakfast bar is just asking to be put away in the dark corners of our cupboard. So just for funsies I thought I’d pop in and give you a little recap of my holiday festivities and my birthday, because I’m assuming someone out there wants to know what I’ve been up to…

So we broke down and decided to get a tree this year, which was a whole ordeal. I was anti-tree because I knew that Acehole would either destroy it or get sick from drinking all the tree water. We ended up caving because B’s whole family comes over on Christmas morning and we felt like it just wouldn’t be right without one. I ended up finding a super cheap one at Tarjay ($26!) and learned a valuable lesson to never order anything for in-store pickup the week before Christmas. I was sassed every way til Sunday by a woman named Carrie with Uncle Leo eyebrows who clearly hated her job and me. But all’s well because I got my $26 tree and I think it turned out pretty spiffy.

tree

As I mentioned, Brandon’s family comes to our house Christmas morning and the good news is the dogs did “ok”. They pretty much bark until they can’t bark anymore as soon as anyone knocks on the door or comes inside, so we left them in the basement to whimper and hate us.  They made a few cameos but with his sisters’ babies around (yes both sisters have babies and they’re both freaking ADORABLE) I thought best to keep them contained. The best part of the morning is his dad makes the most delicious eggs benedict known to man. The only downside of this is seeing the actual amount of butter that goes into that velvety sauce and having to live with yourself for the rest of the day. Which did not stop me from eating three. Or washing them down with mimosas. And eating a delicious dinner just a few hours later at my parents’ house.

I should have asked for more stretch pants this year.

So the next day was my 32nd birthday. And I have to say… it was kind of a weird one. I had a really lovely day, started off with brunch, then had some of my favorite lady friends over for food, wine and lots of catching up. But for the first time I actually didn’t quite feel like I had a birthday. Maybe it’s because I didn’t have any cake or blow out any candles (which is totally fine because honestly I’m so not a cake person), but I think it’s just that I’m getting older and more boring and after 30 I kind of wanted to stop counting. Maybe next year I should do something really crazy. Like go skydiving or leave the house without makeup.

On a high note, I did get a FAB new flat iron for my birthday and it’s pretty much the greatest flat iron I’ve ever laid hands on. It was more $$ than I care to admit, but it was a gift so it’s free to me! It also curls and makes soft waves so it’s fun for hours.

So that pretty much wraps it up! (Look, I made a Christmas pun!) I hope you had a wonderful holiday, whatever it may be, and a very Merry Christmas! I’m thinking about doing a post on my favorite beauty products of 2014, is that something anyone would care to see? Mom?

I’ll leave you with adorable pics of Ace dressed up in Christmas attire. (Mac would rather die, so just picture him sneering.) I realize every picture I used in this post is blurry, but to be fair, I was drinking when I took the tree picture and Ace doesn’t stat still for longer then 2 seconds.

Christmas Acehole

Happy New Year!


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{Must Read} “It Was Me All Along: A Memoir”

It’s no secret that in this world of blogging, it’s almost impossible to stand out. Anyone with a computer and access to the internet can start one, and even if you do, there’s no guarantee that anyone will read it. Lucky for me my mom reads mine, and anyone else I just assume got lost trying to find ways to sneak healthy food out of the kitchen in a cute outfit. (See what I did there? “Stylish, stealthy and hea..”-never mind.) What I’m trying to say is that it’s such a wonderful thing when you discover a blog that you truly love. You find yourself reading for hours, days even, and wanting to invite the person over for a bottle of wine and a pajama party, but like in a totally non-creepy way. You feel like you’ve known them for years, like you’re bosom buds, and it’s really something special. This is how Andie’s blog was for me.

Through following along her blog and exchanging emails over the past few years, I’ve come to consider Andie one of those “internet friends” whom you’ve never met but feel like you have. I’ve been lucky enough to make a few of those since I started blogging, which is probably my most favorite part of the whole experience. It’s a funny thing, even though you’ve only even had a conversation through a screen, you really feel genuinely excited for them when great things happen. Like book deals! When Andie announced she was writing one, I knew I had to get my poorly-manicured hands on it. And when one showed up at my door a few weeks ago, I could.not.wait. to dig in.

It Was Me All Along

It Was Me All Along is about a lot of things, not just Andie’s struggle with food and weight loss, which she has spoken very openly about on her blog. I identified in so many ways with her childhood self, the longing to be thin, the feeling of being an outsider, the back-and-forth torture and shame that binge-eating causes, and the use of humor as a way to deal with it all. This story I knew, but was never able to tell so beautifully. But there’s another, much heavier side of Andie’s story, one that deals with family drama and abuse and loss. Not an easy thing to write I’m sure, but Andie does it in a way that makes you feel like you were right there with her, holding her hand through it all.

Andie also takes you along on her journey through her dramatic weight loss, all 130+ lbs of it, and you feel lighter just reading about it. Again, I identify with a lot of her struggles on my own level, as I’m sure most women can. Following her along as she sheds pounds and gains acceptance and confidence is exciting, especially as she describes her travels through Rome, and eventually landing a dream job working on a Leo DiCaprio movie. (!!!!!)  I learned more intimate details of situations she’d written about on her blog and answers to some questions I was too afraid to ask, but desperately wanted to know. (I realize this makes me sound like a stalker and I’m fine with that.)

I don’t want to say too much more, but know that I read the entire thing, cover to cover, in three days, and it made a whirlwind work trip involving four flights in two days actually pretty enjoyable. I really can’t say enough great things about this book, all I can do is recommend that you read it. Even if you’ve never read her blog (which I can’t imagine), Andie tells her story in its entirety, writing in such a way that only she can. I’m really honored to have gotten an advanced copy, and will definitely be ordering one of my own as well.

Congrats, my friend, hopefully one day soon we will get to share that bottle of wine.

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