heavy eyes, fabulous day

While my day was just as crazy today as this whole past week, I tried to do a better job of documenting it.  As in, I actually took photos today.  We’ve been on the go-go-go and sometimes it’s really hard to whip the camera out for everything going on.  Today though, I had fun with it.

Starting with breakfast.  This multi grain cereal from Trader Joes is delicious.  The grains are a bit larger than plain rolled oats and nice and chewy.

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I cooked it with 1/2 almond milk + 1/2 water and smothered it in pecan butter + chocolate cherry almond butter, with cinnamon honey grahams + cherries on top. 

Ummmm, delicious.

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You can see the glob of the chocolate cherry almond butter in front of the spoon.  It was overtaken by the pecan butter waterfall.

You must make this pecan butter.  Must! :)

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My mom + I were out and about early.  She’s on break right now from teaching [speech therapist].  We headed to downtown Willoughby to run a few errands and stopped by my dad’s office while we were there.

Hi Dad!

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Santa ate too many tootsie pops!  I used to LOVE this candy jar when I was a kid and would visit my dad’s office.

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Cute mom :)

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One place we stopped was The Gourmet Soap Market.  My parents got me a gift certificate to use while I was in town.  It was a really cute store!!  I definitely had a hard time deciding what to get.

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Soap cupcakes!!

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So cuuute!

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I ended up buying a jar of organic face scrub made with ground cacao beans and a few other ingredients, along with a bar of shampoo soap.  I can’t wait to try them out!! 

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Soup + salad for lunch, which is what I’ve eaten almond every day.  I added a handful of smoked paprika almonds on top of the salad, which were deeeelicious.  Extra crunch + flavor.  I also love using hummus as a salad dressing lately.  Mama Pea got me hooked on that method when I was doing the book photo shoot last month. 

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After lunch there were more errands and a quick walk on the treadmill, then a shower, and we were off to where my grandma lives.  [dad’s mom]  We had a lovely dinner in the dining/banquet hall and then went to her condo after to open Christmas presents.

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Since I’m leaving to go back to Colorado today [Christmas eve], we wanted to celebrate while I was still in town.  Chris was missed. :( 

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Grandma + dad

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Such a pretty tree!

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The bro, grandma + me

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My mom wanted me to tell you they were on their way to an ugly Christmas sweater party after we were done.  So excuse her sweater…haha

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Love this one of my parents.  My dad’s necklace was most definitely blinking!!!

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Love this one too!

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Apparently my dad was excited..

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My dad set up this tree in my grandma’s condo for her this year.  I think the white is so pretty!

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Josh + me showing off our new hats.  My brother just started running, so my mom got him all geared up for winter weather!  My grandma got me the knit hat + scarf which I love.  It’s hard to tell in this photo, but the top of the hat loosens and you can actually wear it around your neck as well.  Very versatile!

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After my grandma’s the fun continued.  My parents went to a party and I hit up Trader Joes for a few last minute foodie gifts and ingredients.

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I think it’s deadly to put a Trader Joes + Anthropolgie right next to each other!!!  Torture!!  Anthro was having a really big sale.  I didn’t have a ton of time but got an awesome deal on a cute jacket!  It was normally $100, then on sale for $50 and then an additional 25% off!  I was pretty pumped.

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After errands…….are you still with me??  It was now 10pm at night, it was time to use the TJ’s ingredients and start baking.  Yes, you heard me right.  My aunt, uncle, AJ + Jenna came over to hang out while I baked.

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Baking what?  Mama Pea’s doughballs of course!!  I made a double batch of the peanut butter cookie dough balls and the sugar cookie dough balls.  I wanted to make them for my aunt + uncle to put out for part of Christmas dessert.  Even though I won’t be there, I still wanted some of my goodies around for munching!!  After tasting the raw + baked cookies, my uncle decided these are not going out for Christmas dessert.  He doesn’t want to give any of them away!! 

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This was my first time making the dough balls, and I had no problems at all.  I followed the recipe exactly, using Earth Balance and the correct flours and correct proportions.  I used Trader Joe’s creamy, unsalted, organic peanut butter and gave it a good stir before adding to the mix.  This was not a recipe that I wanted to tinker with, nor does it need tinkering.  Both dough balls baked perfectly and were completely outstanding!!  Everyone raved and of course had fun making jokes about balls. ;) 

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Despite the fact that it is now 2am, I’m on a dough ball high, and am completely exhausted, this day couldn’t have been any better. 

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Except if Chris could have been here!!

Time for bed…my eyes are heavy.

See you back in Colorado for Christmas!! 

Wishing everyone safe travels, good times, lots of laughs and even more love this holiday season.