Homemade Energy Bites

Ever since discovering Tom & Luke’s cranberry and cashew snackaballs in New Zealand last year, I have been wanting to try a homemade version. After picking up a tub of pitted dates at the Indian specialty market yesterday, I scoured the internet for a recipe I could modify. I decided on two versions, a cranberry/cashew mixture and an apricot/ginger/cashew mixture. Both use the same base ingredients so feel free to try these with your favorite dried fruit.

Ingredients (makes 10 balls, easy to multiply!)

1/2 cup roasted, unsalted cashews
80g cup pitted dates
1 tsp coconut flour
2 Tbsp shredded unsweetened coconut flakes
3 Tbsp cranberries OR 3 Tbsp dried apricots and a large slice of crystallized ginger
dash of garam masala, cinnamon, or cocoa (optional)
1-2 tsp water, if needed

Add nuts to the food processor and pulse until fine. Then add remaining ingredients and pulse until everything is a uniform size and ingredients start to form a ball. Gradually add a tsp of water, pulsing the food processor, if needed – it won’t take much! Roll into small balls (~20g each) and enjoy!

These freeze nicely as well.

Memory Monday: a year in the garden

In May, just before we left for Bali, I built a wire trellis to support several climbing plants including moonflower, cardinal climber and passionflower. Starting in early June I took a series of photos of the plant growth over the summer and into fall – the following animated GIF is the six month result.


Clearly I lost control sometime in August, especially with the passionflower!

passionflower  moonflowerpassionflower; moonflower

Carpet Cleaning 101

With two dogs and frequent guests, our living room carpet gets a lot of abuse. In the last few months in particular, a bunch of random dirt spots have showed up with no logical explanation and it was, frankly, a bit embarrassing.

So, when a friend of mine last week mentioned she was going to rent a carpet cleaner from Kroger (she had a leak in her upstairs bathroom), I shared my carpet woes and she suggested we split the cost.




Totally worth $30 and an arm workout.

A family of four…

If you follow either of us on social media, you may have noticed an extra dog has been showing up in our photos lately…

So, say hello to Pasha – the newest member of our family!

She is also a mini schnauzer and we have pup-sat her on numerous occasions, including a trip to the mountains for waterfall hiking. Our friends were having trouble caring for her and asked us to adopt her right after Labor Day. We knew it was going to mean a big change in our daily routine and another added responsibility but we love her and couldn’t say no.

Riesling is adjusting pretty well. She would really prefer to be the only dog (soaking up all the attention) but if anyone is going to win her over, it’s Pasha.

Stay tuned for more adventures with our two furry kids.

Three Weddings in August

After not having been to a wedding in over two years we found ourselves with three in one month this August! Thankfully one was local and the other two involved family, so we got to visit with lots of friends and family throughout the month. And, as always, we took a LOT of photos!

Click on the couple’s name to see our entire Flickr photo set for each wedding.

Andrew & Kristin

blue glass newlyweds! first dance photo booth madness

Ryan & Emily

me acting as usher just married! wedding wishes cutting the cake

Leah & Rob

we are all friends! you may now kiss the bride the newlyweds! centerpieces

Memory Monday: Wayfarer’s Chapel

In August 2004, Eric and I had just moved to North Carolina. We had some time off before school started so we took a trip out to Los Angeles to visit my brother who had graduated from college and moved there for a job. Upon researching things to do in the area, Eric found Wayfarer’s Chapel (also known as “The Glass Church”) located south of LA, along the coast in Rancho Palos Verdes. It boasts gorgeous panoramic views of the coastline and beautiful landscaped gardens.

Eric took this photo of Ryan and I on August 19, 2004.


Fast forward almost exactly ten years later and my little brother was now getting married in that very chapel. This photo was taken on August 16, 2014.

my brother (the groom) and I
we clean up nice, don’t you think?

Lots of things have happened in those ten years and I am so happy that we took the time to pose for another shot together, brother and sister with the ocean in the background.

Happy 13th Birthday!

Our furry child turns 13 today. That’s about 65 in dog years but you would never know by the way she approaches her daily two-mile walks. We’ve been through a lot of long car trips, hikes, stuffed toys, surgeries and lap cuddles.

Happy 13th pup!

Riesling discovers a lizard on the lanai  our little paper shredder
Riesling racing through the snow  Riesling enjoying a brief snooze
field trip to the bank and Southern Season