flax meal bread

•May 8, 2016 • 1 Comment

Wow, I liked this bread even more than the brown bread I made recently. And this hearty flax meal bread (again from Erin McKenna’s awesome Bread & Butter cookbook) has bonus nutrition from the flax meal and chia seeds!

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The bread came out chewy and soft in the middle, with a slightly crunchy crust. Gluten-free vegan bread success, again! Yum!

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rocky mountain arsenal national wildlife refuge

•May 1, 2016 • Leave a Comment

The Rocky Mountain Arsenal National Wildlife Refuge is a great place for  wildlife watching just outside of Denver, and has been surprisingly uncrowded both times I have visited. You can watch cute prairie dogs, birds, the occasional deer, and bison! In some areas the bison are in large fields and there is a fence between the bison and your car.

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And in other areas the bison are free to walk across the road and right up to your car! It’s very exciting, and at least a little bit scary, to see these giant animals (the largest land mammal in North America!) just a few feet away.*

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We even saw one bison rolling in the dirt, which was rather cute. Apparently bison do this either to deter biting flies, remove tufts of molted fur, or for males to display their strength.

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*These photos were all taken on my phone without any zoom.

pikes peak

•April 24, 2016 • 3 Comments

We had hoped to take the cog rail up Pikes Peak on the Saturday morning of our snowy March adventure weekend, but tickets were sold out, so we decided we would drive up the 14,114 foot tall mountain in the afternoon instead. After spending the morning at Garden of the Gods and a nice lunch in quaint Manitou Springs, we headed to Pikes Peak. We then learned that the morning train ride up the mountain ended up getting cancelled because of the snow, so our new plan turned out to be for the best.

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The lower part of the mountain was like a snow globe!

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As we drove up the mountain, we went through the low clouds covering Colorado Springs, and were finally greeted with blue skies and sunshine! And gusts of wind!

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On this day, our view from the summit was limited to the other high peaks that were above the clouds, and the tops of the clouds (sort of like the view from an airplane). I believe the summit temperature was about 0ºF, with a windchill of about -20ºF. Needless to say, we didn’t spend much time outside of the car admiring our surroundings, but this drive was an incredible experience.

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garden of the gods

•April 18, 2016 • 1 Comment

Garden of the Gods is another great place to visit on a wintery day – just bundle up and admire the stunning contrast of the snow against the red rocks.

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On a snowy March weekend, the trails were pleasantly quiet, and we even saw a few deer when we were leaving the Siamese Twins.

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The only spot that had many people was Balanced Rock, and all of the visitors were good-naturedly taking turns posing with the rock and snapping photos of each other. I visited Garden of the Gods once last summer, and it was really crowded even though it was a potentially stormy afternoon, so I enjoyed the very different experience of this visit.

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denver botanic gardens

•April 16, 2016 • Leave a Comment

A couple of dear old friends came from the east coast to catch up and visit Colorado for a weekend in mid-March, so we visited a few places that I wouldn’t have otherwise thought to visit on a snowy weekend. It turns out that the Denver Botanic Gardens are extra beautiful with a fresh blanket of spring snow!

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Of course, the tropical gardens inside the warm conservatory are lovely year-round as well. We really enjoyed having the gardens almost to ourselves.

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gluten-free vegan bread!

•April 12, 2016 • 1 Comment

I made a loaf of gluten-free and vegan bread, and it came out great! It tastes…like real bread! And it doesn’t even fall apart!

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I bought Erin McKenna’s Bread & Butter cookbook of gluten-free vegan bread and pastry recipes, and after buying a few new ingredients and getting over my intimidation, I finally went for it and made a loaf of brown bread. It took about 3 hours from start time to eat time, but I’m pretty excited about the results and am looking forward to trying out some more bread recipes from the cookbook.

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valentine’s day pizza

•February 14, 2016 • Leave a Comment

Our Valentine’s Day pizzas demonstrate one way that non-dairy cheese outperforms dairy cheese.

The almond cheese (on lower pizza) stays in place much better during baking/removing from oven, leaving an adorable broccoli heart intact!

 
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