Wednesday, July 25, 2012

summer fun and challenge hilights

Summertime, summertime, sum, sum, summertime.  We have been enjoying our summer and I hear we are over half way through with our summer.  Boo!

Here is a short review of what we've been up to the past couple of weeks.  Photos are taken from my iPhone.

Cherry Festival was the first week in July.  The festival kicked off with an airshow.  We found our spot on the beach and stayed most of the day.



The kids played in the water, we had lunch, and watched the airshow. 




We've had hot, sunny days.  With sidewalk chalk in hand I made this town and road on our driveway.



Also as part of the Cherry Festival, the boys ran in their first race, a one mile kids run organized by HGTV's Carter Oosterhouse.  He's a Traverse City native and loves to do things for kids.  There was a parade after the run and we stayed and watched.




We took one morning and walked around the festival.  It was hot, so we didn't stay past lunch.  It was fun to see the sites and eat some cherries.







My brother, Adam is moving to Boston soon.  Since I moved back to MI I've gotten to spend more time with him than I ever have since I left my parent's house.  It's been great having this time to reconnect with him and I'm going to miss him when he's far away again.  He came for a visit one weekend right after we got some outdoor furniture.



We've been enjoying our CSA share this year.  And saying hello to the farm cats.





We live about three minutes from a beach on a small lake.  The past couple of weeks I've taken the boys there before dinner, after dinner, for just an hour, or for 3 hours. 








We took a quick roadtrip to see my brother and to pick up a couple of old console radios.  My Great Grandparents owned them (so my brother says - I don't mean to sound like I don't believe him, I do, it's just that I didn't remember that they did), even purchased them new.  I was happy to take them in.
And we had a fun visit with my brother.  I got to see his house for the first time!



Imagine finding vegan, gluten free food at a restaurant! The tofu was a bit over done, but everything else was good.



My husband was gone over the weekend and the trip downstate followed by lots of outdoor activities made the weekend much better without him here.




Garden goodness:
 




Yesterday I headed to the beach yet again, only this time I was alone.  I drove to Lake Michigan, laid down my towel and did yoga on the beach while watching the sun set.









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Now, onto the food!  My cleanse challenge went great.  In two weeks I lost 4 pounds but gained a lot of insight on my eating habits, eating options, time required to make food, snack options, and what would satisfy my sweet tooth. 

You'll remember that potatoes were on my list of no-no's for my challenge so don't worry, I didn't make this Thai Corn Chowder until after the two weeks were over.



Since buying my ice cream maker attachment I've been making two or more ice creams per week.  Hey, I have five mouths to feed, and it's summertime!


This Raspberry Almond Torte (from Dreena's Let Them Eat Vegan) went great with the Vanilla Bean Banana Coconut ice cream (also from Let Them Eat Vegan).


And since my husband is not a fan of raspberries (what?!) I made a blueberry version for him, equally delicious.



Since my challenge ended I have continued to eat gluten free.  I heard that it takes a while for gluten to completely exit your system.  I've allowed a bit of sugar and oil back into my diet, but not like I was consuming before.  I have found other ways around adding oil and sugar to my foods and am very happy with the methods and the taste of my food.  All in all I think the challenge was a great way to take a better look at how and what I was eating.  Sure, I was eating a relatively healthy, vegan diet before.  But now I am taking it one step further.  I'm happy to continue and make my "challenge" a part of my daily eating habits.

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