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Highlights of the Week, Yoga 500 Hour Graduation, PB Cup Brownie Cupcakes

Posted Feb 20 2010 3:45pm
So what's going on in your world today?  Hopefully you had a fun day today and that it was mellow and relaxing, the way Saturdays should be!  My out of town guests that I mentioned were coming for a few days are still here and they've been enjoying Skylar's company and she's been keeping them entertained!  I snuck off to Target and did some grocery shopping, cleaned 3 bathrooms and my kitchen, and whipped up a rocking dessert for my guests, while moving in warp speed since Skylar was being kept occupied.

Even though it's Saturday, I didn't jet off on a 3 hour yoga kind of morning like I usually do for my 500 Hour Yoga Teacher Training Program that I've been working onFor new readers, I've been a yoga teacher since 2001 at the 200 Hour Level, but have recently been pursing the highest level of yoga certification I needed to add 300 more hours to what I already had.  I mentioned in last week's Highlights and Recaps Post that I would be graduating from my teacher training program this week.  And I did 
Now I have my 500 Hours of teacher training completed, I have my certificate from an accredited yoga school, and can register with Yoga Alliance as a Yoga Teacher the Highest Level, a RYT-500!  If anyone missed my mega Yoga FAQ Post and you're curious what this means or what you should be looking for in a teacher, I covered it there. 

This has been nearly 10 years in the making.  It's the culmination of a decade of dedication to the practice, to the yoga community, to students, to yoga being a lifelong path for me, both on and off the mat.  Yoga transcends all aspects of my life and it's a gift I was fortunate enough to discover it a decade ago!  I am really proud of myself for this major life milestone and accomplishment.  For my regular readers you know how passionate I am about yoga and knowing that I have accomplished this goal, the highest level of certification, makes me really happy inside!  Not trying to brag, but I am just really happy!  And of course, doing it as a busy wife and mom makes the reward just that much sweeter!

Ok, toot-my-own-horn-fest is over...haha!

As is my tradition on Saturdays, it's time to recap the past week's highlights in life and food.  If you missed Last Week's Highlight Reel, check out This Post.

But without further ado, let's get this week's highlight party started!

Sunday I made No Bake Vegan Rum Cake Balls
You may or may not catch a buzz from these.  haha!
And I regaled you with my Caribbean Rum Cake Story with Scott that was my inspiration for the recipe.
Gave a Raw Vegan Foods Presentation that was actually part of my yoga teacher training curriculum.   And I had a few interesting attendees and comments to say the least!

And Shared Some of the Recipes I made during the Presentation
Spiralized Zuke Noodles
(for spiralizer info and what I have, where to buy it (the best $29.99 you'll ever spend!) check out this post)
With my Homemade Peanut Sauce
 And Diced Veggies To Create This Dish
And Raw Vegan Chocolate Mousse for Dessert
And I made Raw Vegan Mango-Banana Softserve with Vanilla Extract, sweetened with Agave
And I Mentioned a few "Interesting" Presentation Attendees and Comments they Made about Raw Vegan Food.  I loved what you had to say about these types!

And we talked about Public Speaking and if You're Cool as a Cucumber or if you Get Flustered

Monday There were Lots of Goodies in the Mail
 There was everything from Coconut Oil
And I reminded you about some of my recipes that use Coconut Oil In Them
Vegan Gluten Free Pancakes

Chocolate Coconut Snowballs
And Roasting Veggies with Coconut Oil
to Hemp Products
Hemp Seeds & Hemp Oil & HempShake
And thanks for your feedback about hemp products.  Sounds like alot of you have tried it but are kinda....meh. with hemp. 
Anyone have any hemp recipes that you love which don't involve garlic or onions?  Leave a link for me in the comments section, please!

to Raw Vegan Haircare
To a Give Away Win
 
Showed some Green Food
Dressed with my Homemade Vegan Slaw Dressing
And you told me about Your Dating Disaster Stories!  Oh, these were some of the best comments ever!!!!  I hope you all had a chance to read the other comments, and said a little blessing to yourself that some of these dates weren't actually yours!  There were some doosies, for sure!

Tuesday I Received some Raw Bakery Treats from the Pure2Raw Twins!
Raw Vegan Flatbreads
Raw Vegan Crackers
Dessert Bites!

Their Brownie Bites remind me a little bit of my own 5 Minute Recipe for Raw Vegan Chocolate Donut Holes
 
I Made a Fresh Batch of high Raw Vegan Chocolate Coconut Snowballs

Coconut, Coconut Oil, Cocoa Powder, Maple, Vanilla
 Raw Vegan Chocolate Coconut Snowballs Are a 5 Minute Recipe!
Spiralized Zuke Noodles and Diced Veggies for Dinner
Tossed With My Homemade Peanut Sauce
Scott said he would never have known this was Raw Vegan Zucchini Noodle PastaHigh praise coming from a former Mr. Meat & Potatoes Guy!
And Green Food
And we talked about Changing Others.  Do you Lead by Example?  Do you Try to Help Your Friends & Family Change their eating habits?  Are you preechy about it?  I revealed what strategy works for me when it comes to others when our eating paths & patterns are not the same.  I loved hearing what works for you in your life!

I told you about a Trader Joe's Chocolate RecallYikes!

And we talked about being Organized or Messy, Neat or Cluttered and it was fun to hear who is what!

Tuesday there was my super easy recipe for Overnight Vanilla Protein Oats
Which is very similar to my Overnight "Chocolate Brownie" Protein Oats Recipe

And Skylar and I had a Blogger Meetup! at Starbucks....
...With Madeline
Here's a few pics of our last Coffee Meetup
And I revealed my revamped recipe for No Bake Vegan PB Choc Chip Coconut Oil Protein Bars

Can see the Peanut Butter woven into the inside of the bar here?  oh yeah, baby!
I hope you make These BarsLots of you have already told me you have made them and are loving them...That's Awesome!

Here was some Green Food
With my homemade Maple Ginger Dijon Vinaigrette
And Peanut Butter Banana Softserve for Dessert
 
And I had some of the most heart-warming comments, ever, when I asked about why you blog, what prompted you to start your blog, and I told you that I don't even care about the food anymore.  It's about the people that I have met, the connections and friendships forged and made, and that it's so wonderful to feel a part of this community!  If you missed these comments, check them out here, they're phenomenal!  Thanks again, Everyone who Replied!  And thanks for being like-mined awesome friends!!!

I reminded you how to Save $5 Bucks on your iHerb.com order!
For all my readers, if you 
*Enter the code AVE630, you'll save $5 on your first order!*

I get my protein powder (Sun Warrior), my probiotics (Jarrow), my supplements and natural food (Navitas Naturals), and my natural body care products (Jason) or my Stevia (NuNaturals or Wisdom)....well, iHerb.com is your One Stop Shop for it all!!!
The Code Again to Save $5 Bucks is AVE630


And You Told me Whether You're Into Overnight/Soaked Oats...or not.

Thursday I gave you my Recipe for Vegan Coconut Oil Chocolate
Large Pieces of Chocolate
Bite-Sized Pieces
Diced and oh so Pop-able!
Once you pop, you can't stop!  But this chocolate recipe is healthy with all the good fat from the coconut oil, right?!
There were Aprons in the Mail
And Green Food
 Dressed With my Homemade Vegan Slaw Dressing

And Skylar Dressing Up
Skylar took it upon herself to dress up in a headband (she calls herself Pocahantas in it), her pink & purple wristband (which she calls herself a Ballerina in), and her Valentine's Day red beads.   
 Thank goodness she doesn't know about Mardi Gras beads yet!
And I Gave you a Tip about How to Prevent the Stinky House Problem when you Cook Broccoli

Friday I began my Tropical Traditions Coconut Peanut Butter Give Away!
Organic Coconut Peanut Butter
The Give Away goes until Tuesday, February 23, 2010 and if you Need to Enter, Click Here to Win some Coconut Peanut Butter!

Today I made PB Cup Brownie Cupcakes Drizzled with White Chocolate for my out of town guests! 

They are really similar to the PB Cup Chocolate Chip Cookies That I Made Here
Some Had PB Cup Centers  

 And Yes. They were met with Rave Reviews!
...And others had Dark Chocolate Caramel Centers 

Scott couldn't decide if he liked the Peanut Butter Cup Centers Better....

...Or the Dark Chocolate Caramel Ones Better.  Hmmm....
....What a problem to have, right!  Which would you pick: PB Cup or Dark Chocolate Caramel?


Today's PB Cup Brownie Cupcakes Involved Taking Non-Vegan, less-than-perfect raw materials...
Chocolate Chip Brownie Dough, Dove Dark Chocolate Caramels, and Reese's PB Cups
I Put a golf ball sized amount of dough into each muffin liner and Baked for for 5 Minutes at 350F
Insert either a PB Cup or a Dove Dark Choc Carmamel into the Center
Bake for 8-9 more minutes or til you think they're done.  For me this is usually on under-done, totally gooey, barely held together side of things!  And this is a Perfect Dessert!  Wait. It could be improved upon though...
Melt White Chocolate
And Drizzle it Over the Top of the Brownie Cupcakes!
I slightly underbaked them so they were totally gooey and chocolate was everywhere.  A great problem to have!
They smelled ridic good.  And Skylar thought they were pretty good and had one very messy bite and then told me she was done.  Hey cool, that self-moderating thing.  It works in my 3 year old!
But I didn't have one.... 
...Honestly, I much prefer my Vegan Coconut Oil Chocolate for Dessert!
Yoga Today is Parsvottanasana (Intense Side Angle Stretch)

And Parivrtta Trikonasana (Revolved Triangle)
Both of these asanas are great for opening up the hips, hamstrings, and lower back. Runners especially, take note.  Many people are tight in the hips, hamstrings, or lower back, so most everyone can benefit from these poses.  In our bodies, everything is connected and when one aspect is tight or out of balance, it affects other things, which forces the body to compensate, which can lead to injury.  So stay loose, open things up, stretch it out! 
Tip of the Day: My Tropical Traditions Coconut Peanut Butter Give Away!
Organic Coconut Peanut Butter
The Give Away goes until Tuesday, February 23, 2010 and if you Need to Enter, Click Here to Win some Coconut Peanut Butter!  Seriously the combo of PB and Coconut.  Hello, I'm in Love!

Questions:
What's something that you've accomplished that you are extremely proud of or happy about?  Is there something that you embarked upon that was a long-winded or more complex goal that you finally accomplished?  Or is there something that you really had to stretch yourself to do or overcome, but that you did it and now you're soooo happy and proud of yourself?  Tell me about it!

For me, my 500 Hour Yoga Teacher Credential takes the cake right about now, but tell me about what you're proud of accomplishing or a long, drawn-out goal that you're glad you stuck with! 

What's something you'd like to work towards accomplishing in the future?  Do you set formal goals for things or do you just kind of wing it?
I don't plot my goals on paper, I don't make vision boards, I don't write things down in my planner or even set New Year's Intentions.  But I always have a mental checklist of things I want to accomplish.  For instance, right now I'd like to look into become a personal trainer with more of a natural or holistic-style bend to it.  Somehow I'd like to incorporate my yoga and vegan lifestyle and help others.  Maybe more along the lines of Life Coaching.  Not sure exactly, but I'd like to use my skills and knowledge to help people in multiple aspects of their lives, not just in yoga class, but in other aspects of life, too.   

What's a Goal or Two that you're Working Towards?

Are you productive when it's rainy?  
Today it's been rainy and blah here and since I knew I couldn't be outside, I've been super productive with tasks, errands, cooking but sometimes the rain un-motivates.  How bout you?  Do you just want to curl up on the couch or do you bust a move when it's rainy and dreary?

Stay Tuned For Vegan Coconut Banana Cookies...


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