My name is Ashley McLaughlin and this is my blog, Edible Perspective. To learn more about my journey head on over to my about + FAQ pages. I'm thrilled that you stopped by. Enjoy!


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favorite summer smoothie

There is really nothing “summery” about this smoothie at all.

There are no berries, no peaches or nectarines, no watermelon and actually no fresh fruit at all.

What is summery about it, is how completely refreshing it is.  It’s like a milkshake, but it’s packed with nutrition, so we’ll call it a smoothie.

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Thick, icy cold, and packed with some of my favorite ingredients.  Let’s call it a cacao-pnut-banana-cinna-smoothie.  No one ingredient stands out too much though.  It’s just a nice smoothie blend, with an energizing kick from the cacao beans!

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Summer Cool-Down Smoothie

  • 1c milk of choice
  • 1.5 frozen bananas
  • 1-2c ice
  • 3T raw protein powder [opt]
  • 1T raw cacao beans
  • 1t unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1-1.5T creamy pnut butter
  • 1t maca powder [opt]
  • 1/2t cinnamon
  • 1/2t vanilla extract
  1. Blend until smooth!

The ice really helps make this extra thick + refreshing!  I always receive questions about the glass straws I use.  They’re from the company Glass Dharma and I was given a set to review about a year ago.  I absolutely love them!

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So what’s been going on with the house?

Lot’s of window taping, which took for-everrr.  The wood already looks painted, but don’t be fooled, it’s just pre-primed wood.  My uncle did all the trim work and we are in love with it.  He restored the trim to look like what was originally in the house.  I’m so glad we stuck with the old trim style.

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All of the edges had to be primed, where the wood was cut.  Also, the nail gun holes had to be filled in with putty then sanded.  After all of that dried, I got to painting.  These are the before photos, and the “after” look almost the same.  Since the wood was white, it doesn’t look too different in a photo.  However, in person, it looks much more finished.  Super excited to have that done!

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We’re so happy we have a small house [1015sqft] with awesome ventilation [14 windows!].  The sun never really blares into our house, but we still get a nice amount of natural light.  Even when it’s in the 90’s the house is typically at about 78.  With the 3 ceiling fans on, it’s extremely comfortable.

Even Kenna agrees.

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What am I up to today?  The parents arrive tomorrow [!!!], so I’m trying to get a few house things done.

Today’s task:  replacing electrical outlets + light switches

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It’s actually a super simple job, but it’s taking much longer than it should.  The walls are sort of crumbly where the outlets are, which makes screwing them into place difficult.  It’s also not easy getting the wires in + out of the box, but I’m managing to get it done!  Slowly…

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Don’t worry, I turned off the breakers and Kenna is keeping a close eye on me.

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Time for a smoothie, outlet replacing and finishing up that burger recipe!


Reader Comments (47)

..if you ever need a dog sitter :) ACTUALLY: I am hopefully going to be a Colorado resident next may! I want to call CSU home base for grad school!!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLee @ Fit Foodie Finds

Can't wait to make this! I just need to freeze more bananas, somehow my stash got low too quick!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLindsey

Cool! I just posted my mocha shake I use before and after a workout and saw yours on my facebook feed. I've never tried the cinnamon so I'll add that next time.

Yum, that smoothie/milkshake concoction looks so good... i wish it would magically appear at my work desk!! sighhhhhhhhh

Smoothie=heaven ....especially one that looks like that (yes, the glass straw helps.... I need to get my hands on some Glass Dharma!!!)
I *HATE* redoing electrical outlets, I get so scared; even if the beakers are off! Yikes!

That smoothie looks delish!
You impress me with everything you've been doing at the house! Changing outlets was something I left for the husband ;)

Oooh, adding a little instant coffee would be delish!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

hehehe...definitely let me know if you're heading this way!!!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

"It’s actually a super simple job, but it’s taking much longer than it should."--
That's the story with all

household projects


blog projects, i.e. makeovers or even simple codes,'s never "simple"

Love the smoothie. I make similar things AND I love my glass dharmas and just posted over the weekend about a new company i tried, strawsome. Super pretty glass straws!

You have no idea how much I want that smoothie right now!

Hahaha I have replaced outlets in a couple of houses I have lived in and I never fail to end up slightly electrocuting myself at least once - whoops :). Glad you took the initiative to turn off the breaker!

And where do you buy cacao beans/nibs? I've looked a bunch of places and can't find them anywhere.

Yep, little jobs like that around the house take forever -- you forget how many outlets you have!

The smoothie looks delicious -- I love banana/PB smoothies!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterHolly @ The Runny Egg

My absolute favorite smoothie is almond milk + cacao powder + maca + banana, so this is rockin'!

I just bought some chocolate almond milk from trader joe's that would be perfect in this!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLauren

Look at you and your handy house skills!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterkL---CEE

That smoothie looks perfect! YUM! I am so impressed with how you do things around the house.

Yum! That smoothie sounds like a winner for sure! :)

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAbby @ Abz 'n' Oats

mmm that smoothie looks so creamy and delicious! :) I love how you call it 'pnut' hehe :)

Jealous of the glass straws, definitely need to get some! And all my favorite flavors have found themselves in that smoothie, yum!

Good luck with the house stuff and have fun with your parents!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKaitlyn@TheTieDyeFIles

This looks amazing. So yummy, creamy, rich, AND nutritious. I have a feeling this would taste purty incredible with the Sunflower butter sitting in my fridge. mmmmm...

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterRebecca

Those glass straws are cool!! And that smoothie looks AWESOME! Super refreshing I'm sure!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLiz @ iheartvegetables

Awwww yeahhhhh.

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKatelyn @ Chef Katelyn

That's crazy! I just made a really similar smoothie:
banana, frozen pineapple, ice, milk, pinch of xanthan gum, vanilla, cinnamon, cocoa powder, and then a few chopped up "truffles" at the end. The truffles are basically balls of food-processor'ed dates, cashews, cocoa powder and oats. The texture is awesome! I'll have to try your version soon.

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterClea

OOh, that sounds pretty amazing as well!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Thanks so much Kaitlyn!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

hahaha, thanks ;)

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley


July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

OH.myword. Choco milk would be amazing!! Actually, I just bought some for my mom, for when they're in town. She loves this local dairy's choco milk. Might have to give that a try!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

YES! Seriously so good!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

I've been inhaling smoothies the last few days, fruity or otherwise. This looks awesome.

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKatie

Oh gosh, now I'm scared!!! haha I found them in the bulk aisle at whole foods, but have also seen little packages of them in the raw food section of health stores.

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Yummy smoothie. Bet adding some decaf coffee would intensify the chocolaty factor ;)

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKiran @

As long as there is frozen banana in that smoothie i'm sold :)
Good luck with the electrical, you are way more braver then myself!

Mmmmm, that sounds so tasty especially with the hot weather I'm experiencing. I love chocolate banana PB shakes, but the addition of raw cocoa beans and maca sounds delectable :) can't wait to try!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterEmilia

That smoothie looks so tasty! Thick, with amazing ingredients..and I think it really is perfect for summer :)

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterLenna

Yum! I finally tracked down some cacao powder at a local health food store. I've used it to recreate a smoothie we make at work, but I'm looking for new ways to use it. You can't go wrong with peanut butter, banana and dark chocolate!

July 18, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterCookie and Kate

im obsessed with smoothies lately. can't wait to try this one!

Fun! I've never actually used cacao powder, just the beans + cocoa powder. Hope you like it!

July 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Definitely need to try adding coffee!

July 19, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

What an excellent looking smoothie!!!

Yum! I make a similar smoothie but put 1/4 cup rolled oats in the mix. I call it cake batter smoothie because of the consistency and the taste.

July 20, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer

That smoothie does look so much like a milkshake! Yum... Add a bit of espresso in there and i'd be wired.

Oh Em Gee!!! Ashley, I'm sipping on a slightly modified version of the summer cool down smoothie and it is dee-lish!! thank you so much. i don't know if i did something wrong or not but it tastes like a healthier, tastier version of the reese's pieces blizzard from dairy queen. thank you, thank you, thank you!

July 22, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterBarbara

YAY!!! Thanks for letting me know. :) Seriously, it tastes like a milkshake!

July 23, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

Great smoothie recipe! It's very close to my fave recipe actually. Try adding a good shake of cinnamon and a scoop of pumpkin puree if you happen to have some. I also do the spinach thing, but that obviously not for flavor!

July 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAly

I add spinach a lot too and cinnamon!! Definitely love the pumpkin smoothies as well..mmm

July 28, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterAshley

I made this awhile ago, but I remember that it was super yummy! My half sister kept asking me to make her more!

September 30, 2011 | Unregistered CommenterKathy

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