Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Bob's Red Mill Giveaway Winner!
The winner of the Bob's Red Mill giveaway is RunWiki! Congratulations lady! 

Thank you to everyone that entered! You can go here to receive a coupon off your next order!
posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 8:47 AM   0 comments
Monday, April 7, 2014
Hazelnut Crepes and My Week In Review!
***Don't forget to enter the Bob's Red Mill Giveaway! Hazelnut Flour and a $50 gift card!

I always aspire to be more organized. Some days, I feel like I'm getting better, but then there are other days when I realize I have 5 lists going and nothing is really getting done. Overwhelmed much? I love how Meghan at Clean Eats Fast Feets stays so organized. I dream of being that good some day…

Week In Review Button Final

Last week was a really good week at the old homestead. I'm not sure if many of you know this, but my husband is an illustrator. He works long hard hours. He's extraordinarily talented (at least I think so) and my job (one of many, but the one I do for him) is to help him with promoting work and keeping the books. Talk about the blind leading the blind here. Well, we are starting a new direction in the work he offers. We recently started screen printing his work! So, last week was all about putting some artwork on a garment from start (creating a screen) to finish (screen printing a t-shirt). He is incredibly good at illustrative design, working for many years creating logos and commercial artwork, so this is a natural progression for his work. He has worked digitally for years and as an artist, he has the need to do something more artistic with his hands. Pulling ink through the screen and seeing an image he created come through was extremely exciting! I can't wait to see where this takes him in this new venture!

So, Monday was spent prepping the screen for photo emulsion. I was terrified of this. I have never worked with anything light sensitive in my life. I'm a personal trainer and chef. Lucky for Tony, I'm also artsy fartsy, so while this was scary, it was also fun! I trained a few clients and found my way into the kitchen to play with more hazelnut meal too. Hazelnut Crepes!

Savory


 Filled with Daiya folded and browned on each side to melt the "cheese".


Sweet


Folded and served with caramelized bananas with dairy free ice cream on top.

Hazelnut Crepes
(makes 9 medium crepes)

1/2 cup Bob's Red Mill Hazelnut Meal
1/2 cup Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free All Purpose Flour
1/4 tsp guar gum
1 cup egg whites
1 cup almond milk
2/3 cup water
2 TBSP dairy free butter, melted

Mix everything in a blender and blend for 3 minutes. Refrigerate for 4 to 24 hours. Cook in a buttered or oiled non-stick pan flipping when bubbles form on top of the crepe. I used a 1/3 cup measuring cup for each crepe. Serve savory or sweet!

Tuesday was a runch day! Lunch time runs are becoming a favorite of mine. I felt like a caged animal that had been released when I got out in the sunshine! Hit a PR and then fueled up with a kabocha sandwich on protein flatbread!



Wednesday was the day we actually worked with the photo emulsion. We coated our screen and got things ready to wake up before the sun came out on Thursday morning (happens anyway, but we needed the dark that day for work). I trained clients and got a little bookkeeping work done. Have I mentioned how much I hate that part of work? UGH!


Thursday was a crazy day. We got up, had a little coffee and then got to work exposing and cleaning our screen. We went with a fun design for our first try and I'm amazed at how well it turned out.



We also printed shirts! So much fun!


I also spent 4 hours driving kids around to various things and trained clients. It was a busy, but super fun day!


Friday was Friday, need I say more? I got in a great run with Tony, got some tax stuff done (I still have some to do) and then relaxed with my men watching a movie.


Saturday was a day of errands with Tony. We started our morning with a cup of coffee before the sun came up (we are apparently getting old and can't sleep in) and ended up having an incredible brainstorming meeting! I love seeing him so excited about art in a different way. He loves what he does with comics and that will always be a passion of his, but see him look forward to new opportunities really inspires me. I'm a lucky girl to have him in my life. He has given me a beautiful family and a comfortable place to live. I could never ask for more. Love him! We also made our way to the art store for more ink! I can't wait to play with these!



I finished the weekend with a 6 mile run with Tony. It's the first 6 miler in a long time that felt good. It was needed. I also spent the morning working on laundry while Tony took our oldest out to drive on real roads for the first time. That part was a little hard to deal with. I have no idea where the time has gone? Everyone survived safe and sound, including the car. Again, I couldn't ask for more.


MiMM MIMM #77 A Very Grateful Thanksgiving <3

I hope you all had an amazing weekend! I am definitely feeling Marvelous In My Monday!
posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 7:02 AM   11 comments
Monday, March 31, 2014
Hazelnut Oven Baked Pancake and a Giveaway!
It's Monday my friends and I'm feeling pretty Marvelous!!! I had an incredible weekend with friends and my little family, so I would say that's the perfect way to start this week off on the right foot! Also, I have an incredible giveaway to share with you all today along with a super easy, delicious and healthy recipe for an oven baked pancake. You can't beat that, right?!

MiMM MIMM #77 A Very Grateful Thanksgiving <3

Alright, let's be honest, life is busy. I feel like we are constantly on the go around here these days. I know we aren't the only ones, so lately, when I think about developing recipes, my first consideration is to come up with something everyone can do quickly and easily. 


I got to thinking about all the meals that are a little on the time consuming side and came up with pancakes as being one that we love, but I always dread the time I spend in the kitchen flipping them. I don't know about you, but when the weekends roll around, I just want to relax, drink my morning coffee slowly (instead of slamming it down my throat while driving) and watch home shows with my husband. Well, my kids have a different picture of what the weekend mornings should look like. They like to have a "Saturday" or "Sunday" breakfast, as they call it, which is completely different from any other day of the week kind of breakfast (you know like cereal or yogurt). I get it, the weekends mean big breakfasts with all the fixings! I love cooking, it's what I was meant to do, it's my zen, but with how busy things have been lately, I am really focusing on coming up with fast, healthy, simple recipes that don't actually taste like they are all of those things. 


So, this is when I had the idea for a baked breakfast pancake. This recipe is so simple. You just put everything in the blender, blend it all up, pour it into the pan and bake it! No standing in the kitchen for 30 minutes flipping pancakes! 


The topping options are endless. I topped ours with powdered sugar and caramelized bananas*. Strawberries and whipped cream would be amazing too. I'm definitely making this the next time we have company over for breakfast. A build your own topping bar would be perfect with this easy to make pancake. The boys enjoyed this so much, they went right back in for seconds! That makes me a happy mama. They don't even know this was good for them. Sssshhhh, don't tell them!


Hazelnut Oven Baked Pancake
serves 4

3/4 cup hazelnut meal
1/3 cup quinoa flour
1 TBSP sugar
2 tsp baking powder
2 eggs 
1/2 cup almond milk
1 TBSP lemon juice

1 TBSP coconut oil

Heat the oven to 425°. Place the coconut oil in a 10" cast iron skillet. Melt the coconut oil in the oven while it preheats.

Place the hazelnut meal through lemon juice in a blender and blend 2 minutes or until completely mixed together on high speed. Swirl the melted coconut oil in the pan to completely coat it. Pour the pancake batter into the pan and bake for 20-25 minutes or until slightly browned on top. Serve warm with your favorite pancake toppings.

*To make the caramelized bananas, I simply melted non-dairy butter in a skillet, sliced the bananas, cooked them slightly and then added a little brown sugar and vanilla to them when they were just about done cooking.

How would you like to try out the new Hazelnut Meal from Bob's Red Mill and receive a $50 gift certificate to try out more of their amazing products? Well, here's your chance! You have multiple ways to enter. Make sure you leave a comment for each entry. Winner will be announced Tuesday, April 8th. Good Luck!

To enter the giveaway:
1. Leave a comment here telling me your favorite quick meal
2. Follow me on Facebook.
3. Follow me on Instagram.
4. Follow me on Twitter.
5. Follow Bob's Red Mill on Facebook.
6. Follow Bob's Red Mill on Twitter.

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 12:11 PM   52 comments
Monday, March 24, 2014
Gluten Free Protein Flatbread and The Most Amazing Sandwich
It's Monday!!! Yep, I'm in a good mood! I had a pretty incredible week with my guys last week that led right into a great weekend. Tony and I are working on some projects together for his work (he's an illustrator just in case some of you weren't aware). He just came off of a huge project working on the Vampire Diaries comic and he's about to start a new project. We also have things of our own that aren't licensed projects that we are working on together. So, fun stuff ahead! We got the chance to spend time together and just talk about all the things we want to do in the future. It was a GREAT week! So…I definitely feeling Marvelous in My Monday!

MiMM MIMM #77 A Very Grateful Thanksgiving <3

I also got the chance to get to the Asian market this week!!! Definitely a bonus for me since I finally got kabocha after 3 weeks of not having any. They didn't look so great, so I only got 4 small ones. Oh well, guess I need to go back soon. Confession…I have a serious weakness for kabocha. You know how some people love chocolate or wine? That's how much I love kabocha! Once I roast it, I'm better off just eating the whole darn thing so I don't have to think about it. Yes, I know it's a vegetable, but even still, it's a carb and you can go overboard. Who am I kidding, you can never have too much kabocha. :)

BWV-Round2-March_thumb

So, this week's MMAZ for Better With Veggies was to cook someone else's recipe.


I knew right away what I wanted to make when I saw Spabettie's kabocha sandwich.


Seriously, how could you go wrong? I did get a little overly excited and accidentally left the sautéed onions on the stove and didn't remember them until later. I dove right into that sandwich! OH MY GOODNESS!


The combination of sweet crispy kabocha with the spicy dijon mustard, the crisp refreshing lettuce and the soft doughy bread was nothing short of amazing. I used my protein quinoa chickpea flatbread for the sandwich to add a little protein to the mix. AMAZING! You all HAVE to make this!

Mini Qunioa Chickpea Flatbread Loaves
(makes 2)

1/3 cup quinoa flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)
1/3 cup chickpea flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 TBSP apple cider vinegar
1/4 cup egg whites
2/3 cup soda water

Combine the dry ingredients in a bowl. Add the wet ingredients and mix well. Pour batter evenly into 2 greased mini loaf pans. Bake at 450 degrees for 20-25 minutes or until lightly browned.

Ok, tell me, what's your guilty addiction? Kabocha really is mine. The boys make so much fun of me for it, but I just can't get enough.

I hope you all have an amazing week! I have a few recipes to share this week and a giveaway! Happy Monday!

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 5:30 AM   14 comments
Thursday, March 13, 2014
Hazelnut Pate A Choux!
I don't think I've mentioned it on here yet, but I'm happy to announce that I am an ambassador for Bob's Red Mill this year! You all know how much I love this company, what it stands for and the incredible products they continuously produce. They have some new products out and I was lucky enough to get to play in the kitchen with them. The first one I'm sharing is their Hazelnut Meal! Remember the Crunchy Hazelnut Granola Cereal? Yep, that included this amazing new product. I will be sharing more recipes and giveaways with these amazing products! For now, go check out my post on the Bob's Red Mill Blog featuring this Hazelnut Pate A Choux recipe! It's so easy and so delicious!

Hazelnut Pate A Choux

Hazelnut Pate A Choux filled with sautéed onion and bacon egg salad

Hazelnut Pate A Choux filled with chocolate hazelnut spread..

dipped in creme anglaise!

Hazelnut Pate A Choux baked glazed doughnuts

posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 12:46 PM   5 comments
Monday, March 10, 2014
Finding Happiness, Butternut Squash Rösti and Crunchy Gluten Free Almond Granola Cereal!
MiMM MIMM #77 A Very Grateful Thanksgiving <3
I want to start this post with saying that this weekend was really good for me in so many ways. I spent some amazing time with my men, I got to meet my niece and visit with my sister whom I haven't seen in 3 1/2 years, cooked A LOT, cleaned up the house some, did yard work (I'm so excited to get a garden going) and finished it all up with a walk last night at the park with my men. It was a much needed great weekend. I am, in fact Marvelous In My Monday!

Me and my sister Whitney with her little one Audrey!

I now want to give my thoughts on happiness…

I had a bad week last week. Sadly, not because anything bad happened, just that I was mentally in a bad place. I think I got more annoyed that it really wasn't a bad week and that there was really no good reason for me being so down. I think the biggest problems were that there are some things changing around here (for the better, but change just the same) and that I let all the little things in my head add up.   You know, the things you have no control over? Those little things that haunt the corner of my brain that will never be fully resolved. I need to learn to let go…

It didn't help that my schedule was completely thrown off either. My work schedule along with the fact that the kids are in school for an extra 30 minutes for the next two months to make up for the snow days really was frustrating. I felt out of it (out of control) from Sunday through Wednesday of last week. That was definitely my rabbit hole to no place good. I made the decision on Wednesday night when I went to bed, that no matter what, I was waking up with a better mental outlook. I don't know that I believe you can always choose "happiness". I am a happy person in general even through the bad. I feel like perspective is everything and learning how to deal with the harder things in life is the key. I am really working on it. I have an incredible little family here and some amazing friends (thank you to all of you that helped talk me through last week). I just let the crap add up. I don't want to be that person. I want to be able to focus on the good and let the bad go. About 3 years ago, I was living in a pretty bad place mentally. I have worked hard to bring my focus to the here, the now and the good that is all around me. I'm lucky in that I have an incredible husband that seriously always has my back. The man is a gift from the gods…I swear he is. I must have been really good in a former life to get him in this one. I guess all of this is to say in an open forum that I am happy. I am going to make an effort to be happy even through the not so good times. I am going to take some time everyday to look around me and notice the special moments that I normally let slip by me. I'm also going to work harder at doing the things that make me happy (like walks at sunset). I sat at dinner with my three guys on Thursday and Friday night. This is something that can't always happen with our crazy schedules. We all laughed so hard at stupid stuff for an hour both nights. I'm going to make a point of doing this so much more. While I know I can't always control things in my life, I do have control over how I deal with them. I need to go back to my New Years intention and focus on living purposefully.


Now, on to the fun stuff…

BWV-Round2-March_thumb

While working out is one of my favorite things to do to put me in a good mood, being in the kitchen is by far my all time favorite way to cleanse my mental palate (also, my actual palate). So, this week I have not 1, but 2 recipes for you! The food for Better With Veggies MMAZ was squash. I was happy to get in the kitchen and play around. I bought 4 different kinds of squash but one really stood out to me...


Butternut!


This recipe is really simple and really delicious, especially if you like texture with your food. 


These little baked butternut squash rösti are soft on the inside and crispy on the outside. I have to confess, I'm not a fan of savory winter squash dishes. I mean, I love winter squashes, but I either eat them plain or I make them slightly sweet. So, I made these two ways…breakfast and dessert! Don't stress over the look of these. This recipe is definitely an metaphor for finding the perfection in the imperfect. The messy part is where are the crunchies come into play.

Served with yogurt and crunchy almond granola cereal.


Butternut Squash Röti
(makes about 9)

5 cups shredded raw butternut squash (about 1 lb 1oz)
1 flax egg (1 TBSP flax meal mixed with 3 TBSP hot water, allow to sit for 15 minutes)
1 TBSP cornstarch
1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice

Preheat your oven to 400°. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper.

Combine everything together and mix well to make sure all of the squash is evenly coated. For each röti, scoop about 1/2 cup worth onto the prepared pans. Bake for 15 minutes, then flip (carefully making sure you scrape it all off the parchment and just fixing them as needed) and bake an additional 15 minutes. Allow to cool slightly.


I decided to use a different meal for my Crunchy Granola Cereal this time…


Bob's Red Mill has a new product out! Natural Almond Meal! This stuff is amazing! You can bake your gluten free goodies with it and it works like a charm with my granola so I don't wreck my food processor! Such an amazing product!


Served with maple walnut dairy free ice cream and crunchy almond granola cereal.

Crunchy Gluten Free Almond Granola Cereal
(makes about 5 cups)

3 cup corn flakes (I used Attune Foods)
1 1/2 cup quick oatmeal (I used Bob's Red Mill)
3/4 cup natural almond meal/flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)
9 TBSP egg whites
9 TBSP coconut sugar (I used NuNaturals)
3 TBSP melted coconut oil

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Spray a 13 x 9 pan with coconut oil.

Combine all of the ingredients in your prepared pan. Stir everything together smashing up the cereal as you thoroughly combine the ingredients. Bake for an hour to an hour and a half stirring every 15 minutes. Allow to cool and enjoy!

I hope you all have an amazing week! 
posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 6:29 AM   11 comments
Monday, March 3, 2014
Crunchy Gluten Free Granola Cereal
In truth, I started my week off in a bad mood. I'm always the first to say, "stop with the negative talk", but today really hit me the wrong way. I felt off from the second I got out of bed and let it ruin me for a good portion of the day. Things just weren't going my way and well, yeah…I had a serious case of the Mondays.

 MiMM MIMM #77 A Very Grateful Thanksgiving <3

Well, I've decided enough of the negative talk. Somebody posted on my instagram feed that it's all in how you look at it and I'm going to make today better! I'm working on some new projects and I need to look at the adventure part of these things and embrace the change. Negativity only breeds more negativity…so, today, I choose happiness! I'm always so inspired with how Katie puts her positive foot forward. Thank you Katie for making me see the Marvelousness in my Monday!


So, I've decided to share one of my favorite recipes as of late. I made this one up last week and have made it 4 times since. This should tell you how much my guys like it...before I could take a real picture, the container was empty and I was told that I needed to make more. 


This is more of a sweetened cereal than a true granola, in my opinion. You know the Honey Bunches of Oats cereal, well, this is kind of like that. I used Attune Foods cornflake cereal with some Bob's Red Mill oats and their new hazelnut meal/flour to make a super crunchy delicious cereal! This also works as a crunchy topping to baked goods or doughnuts (which is what I did with the picture above). So easy and so delicious!


Crunchy Hazelnut Granola Cereal
(makes about 5 cups)

3 cup corn flakes (I used Attune Foods)
1 1/2 cup quick oatmeal (I used Bob's Red Mill)
3/4 cup hazelnut meal/flour (I used Bob's Red Mill)
9 TBSP egg whites
9 TBSP coconut sugar (I used NuNaturals)
3 TBSP melted coconut oil

Preheat the oven to 275 degrees. Spray a 13 x 9 pan with coconut oil.

Combine all of the ingredients in your prepared pan. Stir everything together smashing up the cereal as you thoroughly combine the ingredients. Bake for an hour to an hour and a half stirring every 15 minutes. Allow to cool and enjoy!

Happy Monday friends! I hope you're having a great one!

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 3:51 PM   14 comments
Monday, February 10, 2014
Sorghum Lentil Stuffed Peppers (and Burgers)
Well happy Monday my friends! I hope everyone is feeling Marvelous!

MiMM MIMM #77 A Very Grateful Thanksgiving <3

 I enjoyed a nice weekend with our family in Tennessee. It's always so peaceful to go there and just relax. Tony's parents have been working on their dock at the lake and I have to admit, it really made me ready for this summer. I can't wait to soak up some sunshine and enjoy the lake with our family. I don't want to wish time away though, so I'm gonna just enjoy this moment now and look forward to the future ahead. No rush here. Taking life slowly...

So, guess what? I've actually been in the kitchen lately! I know, shocking! I have been so bad about getting in there and spending time preparing full meals using different ingredients. In my defense, I was dealing with quite a few things, including you know, family stress a few weeks ago, completing my yoga teacher training for my continuing education credits for my training certifications, as well as updating my CPR/AED certification and well…you know, work and family. Busy! Now though, I'm cooking!


Have you guys heard about the Grains Of Discovery from Bob's Red Mill? I'm loving going through the adventure of discovering ancient (gluten free) grains through this line they have. For now though…let's talk SORGHUM!


Have you tried it? This was my first time trying it and we all loved it! I get nervous cooking different stuff for the guys, but they all loved sorghum. It takes awhile to cook, but it's so worth it. If you haven't heard of it, sorghum is an ancient cereal grain high in antioxidants and is believed to lower the risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and neurological diseases. It has a very mild taste. For me, it was reminiscent of small grain brown rice. It's also fun because you can pop it like popcorn! How fun is tiny popcorn…so fun and delicious!


I cooked a large batch to have on hand all week. I'm trying to get better about having things prepped and on hand for fast additions to complete meals. This worked so well for our vegetable soup! The soup was a "clean out the freezer/fridge soup" and the sorghum was exactly what I needed to add extra protein and whole grains to the quick soup.

The texture is great too since it's firm and slightly chewy. Sorghum gave a nice contrast to the soft vegetables in the soup. It would also make an incredible addition to salads!


As soon as I tasted sorghum, I knew right away that it would be perfect with lentils for burgers and stuffed peppers (which I have been craving forever!).


These were so good! The perfect texture on the inside with a mix of slightly crispy on the top, chewy and dense on the inside with a sweet roasted pepper on the bottom. I LOVED this mixture. I also made burgers with it to keep in the freezer for later. I actually made 2 peppers cut in half and 23 burgers with the remaining filling. This mixture freezes beautifully too which is a huge bonus for me. 

Sorghum Lentil Stuffed Peppers (and Burgers)

1 cup sorghum, prepared per directions (I used Bob's Red Mill)
1 cup lentils, prepared per directions ( I used Bob's Red Mill)
1 head cauliflower, cut and steamed
2 TBSP flax seed meal (I used Bob's Red Mill)
1 1/2 cups gluten free quick oats (I used Bob's Red Mill)
1 TBSP onion powder
1 TBSP garlic powder
2 tsp salt
1 tsp pepper

Cook the sorghum and lentils according to package directions. Drain excess liquid from them. While the steamed cauliflower is still hot, puree in food processor and then place in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the flax meal and set aside while you process 1/2 the lentils in the food processor. Next, add the sorghum, lentils, oats, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper to the cauliflower mixtures. Stir well to combine. 

*For the stuffed peppers, slice red peppers in half from top to bottom. Clean out the seeds. Lay the peppers on their sides in a greased baking dish. Fill each half with about 3/4 cup sorghum mixture. Bake at 400 degrees for 45 minutes to an hour or until the top of the peppers is browned and the peppers are soft. 

*For burgers, form mixture into burgers using about 1/2 cup of the sorghum mixture. Bake on a parchment lined pan on 400 degrees for 20 minutes, flip the burgers and then bake an additional 20 to 30 minutes or until the burgers are slightly browned. 


I topped my peppers with pasta sauce and nutritional yeast. You know, because it's so good!

Have you tried sorghum? If so, what have you done with it?

I hope you all have an amazing week!

I'm sharing this on Allergy Free Wednesday.  

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 5:00 AM   6 comments
Friday, January 24, 2014
Friday Fodder…Refocusing and Finding Inner Peace


Well friends, it's Friday. I'm not gonna lie, the past two weeks have been less than kind to me. A little over dramatic…probably, but perspective is everything and well, right now, I'm pretty drained. I will warn you, this is a mental cleansing post. I have been thinking a lot lately and I really just needed to journal my thoughts so I can get them out and move forward. I completely understand if you need a fun post to read on a Friday, so by all means, come back on Monday. I promise to move past this and get myself mentally back on track…


I turned another year older last Tuesday. I was actually doing really well with that thought. I was still feeling fresh and ready to tackle 2014 head on. Me and my purposeful action year, we were on a roll. 

Photo: Helen C. Wilson, my beautiful mother
(Grandmama was 13 or 14 here)

Sadly, on that day, I got word that my beautiful grandmother was dying. I was beyond crushed by this news. At first, I was coping with it understanding that she was 82 years old and had suffered from horrible dementia for years. It was her time. I felt an odd sense of calm for her. I focused on her beautiful smile and always happy demeanor. She was an amazing cook that always made the best Sunday dinners for us. I like to think I got that from her. I remember her pork roasts (with mustard sauce), lima beans, coleslaw (with Dukes mayonnaise), rolls and either German Chocolate Cake (the best in the world) or pecan pies. She and my grandfather had huge pecan trees in their yard. My cousin, Michael, my sister, Tara, and I would spend hours picking up pecans for our treats. Definitely a delicious rewards! Grandmama was the type of person that always made you feel happy because she was so incredibly happy. She never met a stranger. You instantly felt like she was a long time friend. She was simply amazing. I will forever miss her laugh and the Southern way she said my name.

I got a call that Thursday evening letting me know that she had passed away. I fell apart. I was completely irrational and angry…mostly at myself. I had let way too many years get between she and I. For that, I will forever feel guilt. My feelings grew sadder as I realized how far gone my youth really is. Not about my age or getting older, but that time has gone and it's going fast (if that makes sense). Driving to South Carolina for her services gave me plenty of time to reflect on things. I have never done so much meditative breathing in my life. My thoughts were all over the place from regret, to sadness, to missing my cousins (whom I hadn't seen in far too long), to missing my grandfather, to not understanding relationships that have gone bad…I was beyond sad.

My expectations of life are not what I thought they would be. I'm guessing most people struggle with this. I should preface this with saying that I am in the most amazing marriage with my best friend. That will forever be true, but there are relationships in my life that I just don't understand and probably will never understand. I'm coming to grips with the reality that we are responsible for who we are. I can't control the people around me or make them see what I see. I really need to move in a direction that makes me happier with me. I need to find inner peace with who I am and where I am (in life and in relationships). I did not take any time off from work this past week. Starting two weeks ago, I went from a crazy work week, to a horribly sad weekend with a lot of stress saying final goodbyes to my grandmother, to driving home at 11pm on Sunday night after her funeral service, to getting up at 4:15am Monday to train clients and then working my butt off this week. Emotionally, mentally and physically I am drained. So, this weekend, I am taking time to regroup and refocus. Two things I will definitely be doing…running and cooking. I have done neither this week and those are both things that I love to do for me. Hopefully I will be catching up on some rest too. I want to start next week on a positive note with positive affirmations.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend and definitely tell your loved ones that you love them (hug them if you have the chance). While true friendship and love always know, it's always nice to hear it too.

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 11:56 AM   15 comments
Monday, January 13, 2014
Muddy Running, Peanut Butter Oatmeal Waffles and Jammin To The 80s!
Oh Monday, we meet again…

MiMM MIMM #77 A Very Grateful Thanksgiving <3

I can't complain at all though, I am coming off of an amazing weekend with my men so I'm gonna have to say this is a pretty Marvelous Monday! Tony and I spent most of the day jamming to 80s jams on cassette.



Yeah, we're that old. I'm impressed that my boom box still worked! Tony's parents sent some tupperwares of his stuff (and some of mine from college) back with us at Christmas and with the power being out most of the day due to HEAVY storms, we made the best of it. It was a blast! We drove the kids crazy. We are now those parents. :)

Tony and I got an extremely muddy run in on our favorite trail. 



My poor new running shoes are a mess now. I let them dry and now I need to really try to clean them up some. UGH, they were so pretty! Oh well, hopefully I can get them presentable again. Thank goodness for sunny skies though. I needed the fresh air, vitamin D and some time with my running buddy. Made for a perfect Sunday followed by us bringing gluten free pizza home for the boys. Lucky for them, the pizza place is at the end of the greenway.

I have a busy week ahead of me (and so does Tony), but that's a good thing. Can't complain about having work. I'm so excited things are moving in that direction for me! I need to finish up my studying so I can take my exam soon, but I'm really loving everything about my yoga teacher training.


I'm really learning so much about myself through this. It feels amazing.

I also had to share this picture from dinner last night. We had a little dinner geography lesson. It cracked me up…gosh how I love these men!


I'm also really excited that Meatless Mondays are back!

Meatless Mondays from A-Z: January

Today is all about oatmeal! My favorite food ever! I have written many posts on how much I love oatmeal, but today, I'm going to share an absolute favorite! I LOVE waffles and pancakes, so of course I'm going to put oatmeal in them to make them even better!


This recipe works as pancakes or waffles, so don't worry if you don't have a waffle iron. Also, this recipe works as breakfast, lunch, brinner and dessert! A la mode is recommended!


It's dense, rich, thick, crunchy and delicious! Can you tell I like them?



Oatmeal Peanut Butter Waffles
(makes one)

1/2 cup quick oats (or process whole oats just a little)
2 TBSP peanut flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
1 TBSP sweetener of your choice (I used NuNaturals Baking Blend)
6 TBSP water

Mix everything together and cook in a waffle iron (or cook as pancakes).


I hope you all have an amazing week!

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posted by Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen @ 6:38 AM   14 comments

Name:
Sarena Shasteen - The Non-Dairy Queen
Home: Atlanta, GA, United States
About Me: Lactose Challenged
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