Monthly Archives

March 2012

Nutmeg Takes a Vacation

March 22, 2012

A week and a half ago when we were home for my grandma’s funeral, we left Nutmeg with my mom for two whole weeks. Since I’m the type of puppy parent who hated the idea of leaving my dog at a kennel while we vacationed with Joe’s family in Arizona, I figured leaving her with my mom would be the best option.

Of course, my mom has loved taking care of Nut and having her around. Me on the other hand? I’ve been dying. So please indulge me while I post a few pictures of Nutmeg that have been taken over the past couple months. Can’t wait to have her back with us tomorrow!



The Hofmeyers Take Scottsdale

March 21, 2012

The ‘craziness’ I’ve been talking about has actually been a good sort of craziness. Last Friday night, Joe and I hopped a plane and headed down to Arizona for a little spring break vacation with Joe’s family. We rented a house in Scottsdale for the week, and although the weather was unseasonably cool for Arizona, we managed to have a wonderful time despite the cooler temps and rain. And yesterday finally cooperated with us by providing temps in the upper 60’s and lots of sunshine.

Spending time with Baylen was one of the highlights of the trip. He’s such a cute, happy baby and did great with all the traveling and the two hour time change.
 Baylen and mom, Joe’s sister Amber. There is NO way this pretty lady just had a baby less than six months ago.
Baylen spending a lot of time with Grandma Lisa.
And with Uncle Joe, who never fails to make him smile. I think it’s because of all the silly faces Joe makes when playing with Baylen.
Thanks to a recommendation from Fitnessista, we hit up the local Lululemon store on a rainy Sunday for some free (!!) Sunday yoga at the store. It was one of the highlights of the trip! I left feeling so relaxed and energized, and even a little sore the next day.
The cooler temps meant there was time and a reason to do a little shopping. Scottsdale’s shopping was amazing, especially Fashion Square. If you have time in Scottsdale, I highly recommend making a stop.
Jason and Ali are getting married in four months, so we did a little shopping for Lisa, looking for a dress for the wedding. We didn’t have any luck this trip, but we made some progress.
The house we stayed at had a putting green, which entertained the guys for hours during our trip!
Pool time!
Jason and Ali floating the day away…
I finally found a suit that I was happy with. Every time I buy a suit from J. Crew I’m always satisfied with the suit I purchase. They last forever and fit great.
Ali, Amber and Baylen (hiding) taking in some of the sun that decided to appear on our last day there.
The final day of our trip, we decided to go out to dinner. It was so much fun to get dressed up for dinner after a day lounging around in our suits. And with that, our vacation is a wrap!


No Fat Talk Tuesday: True Beauty from Natalie

March 20, 2012

We’re going to mix things up for today’s No Fat Talk Tuesday! Regular posts will resume next week, but for this week my blog-friend Natalie of Thoughts by Natalie is guest posting. I’ve talked about Natalie’s blog before, but I can’t say enough great things about it and Natalie’s perspective on true beauty. She brings an uplifting, unique perspective to the topic that I think all of us following No Fat Talk Tuesday can appreciate. – Madison

I read a blog post last month about how we need to not only stop chasing our skinny obsession, but also actively pursue what’s healthy (a refreshing and much-needed perspective, if you ask me).

In my life, that looks like eating a whole foods plant-based diet–the kind of food that nourishes my body and delights my taste buds. It means that I tie up my shoes and head out the door for a jog in the morning, not timing myself or creating grand expectations for distance and speed. And it also means that I take time to nourish my soul, tending to my emotional needs by reading, journaling and spending quality time with my husband and close friends.

When I’m tempted to make a choice that will damage my health, instead I think it through and choose the option that promotes my health and fills me with the energy needed to love the people around me.

Rather than obsess over being skinny like I used to, I now choose to be kind to my body by the way I talk to it, what I put into it, and what I use it for. That means no fat talk (my favorite topic discussed here on Espresso and Cream), no emotional eating, and no excuses for not using the perfectly functional and strong body God has given me.

I hope and pray that I always be mindful of my health, which I know am so blessed to have. I am young and healthy now, and I want to be old and healthy one day! In order for that to happen, obsessing over being skinny will only rob me of the joy of becoming a true beauty–someone who has a radiance that comes from a kind, generous and confident, not self-obsessed and self-critical.

How do you pursue healthy habits in your own life, while ditching negative, self-critical ones?

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Cupcakes with Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting

March 19, 2012

Happy Sunday, friends! How have your weekends gone thus far? Besides watching my March Madness bracket get torn to shreds, our weekend has been pretty relaxing and blissful.

I’m gearing up for a pretty crazy week, which I’ll fill you in about later. So before things get busy, let’s finish the weekend up with cupcakes, shall we? Most of the time I avoid doing any serious baking unless I know that I’ll have a place to bring the baked goods I make. I mean, do two people really need an entire cake sitting around, begging to be eaten? I would argue no.

Thankfully Christina over at Dessert For Two has those of us baking for two covered. Christina has made a wonderful blog based on scaled-back desserts that taste just as delicious as their larger counterparts, so when a craving for cupcakes hit a while back, I knew where to go. Of course, I couldn’t help but tweak the recipe to make it a little healthier – swapping out whole wheat flour for all-purpose and cutting back a bit on the sugar. Since I made the ‘cream cheese’ frosting vegan, I also included an option to make the cupcakes vegan as well. Though in my version (pictured above) real eggs were used.

And while I know that pumpkin desserts don’t exactly go hand in hand with the month of March, I’m guessing a few of you out there have some leftover canned pumpkin that could stand to be used before summer hits. Not that I’m saying you need a reason to eat canned pumpkin. Personally, I could eat it all year round.

Whole Wheat Pumpkin Cupcakes
Adapted slightly from Dessert for Two
*7 tablespoons whole wheat flour
*1/2 teaspoon baking powder
*1/8 teaspoon baking soda
*1/4 teaspoon salt
*1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
*1/4 teaspoon ginger
*1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
*1 large egg (make this recipe vegan by substituting a flax egg: 1 Tbsp. ground flax and 3 Tbsp. water mixed together)
*1/2 cup pumpkin puree
*2 tablespoons brown sugar
*2 packets stevia
*3 tablespoons vegetable oil

*Preheat oven to 350°F. Line a muffin tin with four paper liners. Spray lightly with nonstick cooking spray. Set aside.
*In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, ginger and nutmeg.
*In a second bowl, combined the egg, brown sugar, stevia and oil. Stir to combine.
*Add wet ingredients to dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Spoon batter into prepared muffin tins. Bake for 24 to 26 minutes, until toothpick inserted in the center comes out almost completely clean (small crumbs are okay). Cool completely. Frost with Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting. Makes 4 servings

Vegan Cream Cheese Frosting
*2 tablespoons vegan cream cheese (I use Trader Joe’s Non-Dairy Spread)
*1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract
*2/3 to 3/4 cup powdered sugar

*In a small bowl, combine all the above ingredients. Stir until well combined and smooth. Add additional powdered sugar if necessary to reach desired consistency (if you aren’t using vegan cream cheese, you may need to add a splash or two of milk). Spread atop cupcakes.

Happy Baking!


Inside My Fridge

March 16, 2012

Good morning and happy Friday, everyone! Do any of you have fun plans for this weekend?

One of my favorite parts of the weekend is grocery shopping. Call me strange, but I could spend forever at the grocery store, browsing the isles and checking out the new and quirky products. I also love seeing inside the fridges of strangers. Maybe it’s a bit nosy on my part, but I can’t help but love it! Today, I’m spreading the fridge-peaking love by giving you a glimpse into my own. Let’s take a look, shall we?

Top Shelf: Greek yogurt, light (80-calorie) yogurts, ricotta cheese

Other top-of-the-fridge items: Better ‘n Eggs liquid egg replacement, leftovers (steamed broccoli for lunches), large eggs, fresh strawberries, canned pumpkin puree

Moving further down: Leftover sparkling apple cider (from NYE), whole wheat bread, boneless, skinless chicken breasts, Leinenkugel’s Honey Weiss (for Joe)

The produce drawer: Cauliflower, red peppers, carrots, oranges, grapefruit, apples, lettuce and broccoli

And the condiments: Mustard, Dijon mustard, soy sauce, poppy seed dressing, ketchup, barbecue sauce, sugar-free pancake syrup, raspberry vinaigrette

And because your Friday needs a little cute in it, a picture of this little Nut…

Make it a good one!


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