Tag Archives: cleaning

Recipe: Maple Nut Granola

I love granola.

maple nut granola 1 - tiffany lane

That may actually be an understatement, but we’ll go with it.

For the past year or so, I’ve committed to making my own granola, and boy is it even tastier than the boxed stuff! But the one thing I’d really been meaning to do is create my own recipe. Something I could call my own.

maple nut granola 2 - tiffany lane

Of course I’ve gathered bits and pieces from recipes all over the web, specifically some of my favorites: Naturally Ella, 100 Days of Real FoodHow Sweet It Is, Eat Life Whole, Fox in the Pine. This, you could say, is a compilation of all my favorite recipes, with my most loved ingredients, in the proportions my taste buds go crazy about!

Something else I love about this recipe? It makes a lot of granola, which is great for me since I’m basically an addict and it leaves enough left over to give as heart felt, homemade gifts, without putting too much of a dent in my own stash.  Yes, I’m selfish when it comes to granola.  But it’s just that good.  Get ready to indulge.

maple nut granola 3 - tiffany lane

And in case you’re worried about getting bored with this granola (not quite sure how that could happen in the first place), here are some ideas for enjoying it: as breakfast (or a snack, or dessert) with whole milk and bananas; over plain whole milk yogurt (sweetened yourself with honey, maple syrup or homemade jam) and topped with fresh fruit; over ice cream or frozen yogurt; by itself right out of the jar; crunchy topping for chocolate covered bananas (or other fruit); a topping for mashed banana mixed with nut butter (great fresh or frozen).  Gosh, the list could just go on.  How are you planning on enjoying it?

MAPLE NUT GRANOLA

Makes Approx. 6 Cups (fits nicely on a standard size rimmed baking sheet)

Ingredients
2 cups rolled oats
1 cup almond meal
1 cup flaked coconut, raw and unsweetened
1/2 cup quinoa, uncooked
1/2 cup cashews, chopped (raw or roasted)
1/2 cup pecans, chopped (raw or roasted)
1/3 cup flaxseed, ground
1 tsp salt
1/2 cup maple syrup
1/3 cup coconut oil, melted
2 tsp vanilla

Preparation
Preheat oven to 275F.

Mix dry ingredients in a large bowl. In a small bowl, whisk maple syrup, melted coconut oil and vanilla until combined well. Pour wet ingredients over dry and stir until all dry ingredients are coated evenly.

Spread onto a lined baking sheet (parchment or Silpat mat) and bake for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and toss, then return to oven to bake for another 20 minutes. Remove, toss and repeat process twice more, for a total baking time of 80 minutes, or until granola turns golden and toasted.

Remove granola from oven, toss and allow to cool. Granola will harden as it cools. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for up to one month.

Doesn’t it make a lovely gift?

maple nut granola gift - tiffany lane

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Spring Crafting

outdoor shelves craft - inspired by charm Photo Courtesy of Inspired By Charm

It’s been Spring for more than a month now, so I hope you’ve had a chance to do some Spring cleaning, or at least added it to your to-do list, or at the very least thought about it.  I did some cleaning out a couple weeks ago, tossing clothes, shoes and beauty products I no longer wear or use, and it felt great!

But as cleansing as Spring cleaning can be, crafting is so much more fun!  Gear up for some craft inspiration and head over to Pinterest’s DIY & Craft section as well as my Pinterest DIY Project board.  Check out my crafting section right here on the blog too!

I always have lots of ideas on my craft to-do list.  Right now I’m looking forward to making a few bug repellent soy wax candles for the backyard, luggage ID dog tags, a workout shirt from old t-shirt, an essential oil diffuser, a pallet coffee table, wine bottle candles and wine bottle candle covers (with our new bottle cutting kit).  What’s on your craft to-do list?

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Worst of the Worst Cleaning Products

I don’t know about you, but Spring isn’t the only cleaning season around our home.  With two cats, a dog and a full grown child (husband), things don’t stay very tidy very long.

On top of the day to day vacuuming and wiping, more heavy duty cleaning is required weekly.  Between the floors, bathrooms and kitchen, there are always lots of areas to clean and keep clean.

If you know me at all (and/or if you read this post) you know I’ve really transitioned from using conventional, commercial products to using safe, non toxic and eco-friendly cleaning agents for a number of reasons.  It amazes me how many deadly and hazardous chemicals are in the products we use to clean our dishes.  What makes you think that if water alone can’t rid dirty dishes of food, that it can rid those same dishes of the chemicals we soak them in?  Same goes for laundry and floors and counters and anything else you clean.

While some of the healthy products are a little more pricey up front, it doesn’t compare to the cost of the damage we cause to our bodies and that of our pets and kids when we use products full of dangerous chemicals.

So how do we decipher the good from the bad? Great question.  It takes a lot of research and digging to get to the core of this issue.  Many companies don’t disclose ingredients on cleaning products and make it a very difficult task to find out.  Luckily, the Environmental Working Group (aka EWG) is putting together a “Cleaners Database” to help you out, which they expect to release this fall.  In the meantime, however, they just released their Hall of Shame showcasing the worst of the worst cleaning products.  I urge you to check it out, you may be surprised at what you see, and it may be that firm kick in the butt you need to clean up your cleaning act.

Two more guides EWG offers are (1) the Shopper’s Guide to Pesticides in Produce, where you can read the Clean 15 and Dirty Dozen lists, and (2) the Skin Deep sunscreen database to find the safe sunscreen that fits your family.

Have you switched or have you considered switching to all natural, non toxic, cleaning agents?  Why or why not?

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Filed under Eco-Purpose

Spring Cleaning

Ok, I know it’s not quite spring yet, but here in SoCal, sometimes it feels like it’s spring year round!  And since this time of year is when a lot of people start getting their acts together cleaning and organizing, I figured I’d give you a little organization inspiration!  Any New Year’s resolutions?

I love this laundry room from Southern Living:

What a great closet from Wishful Thinking via Pinterest:

These tin can organizers from Shabby Chic Inspired are adorable:

Wouldn’t this chalkboard wall organizer from In Order 2 Organize be awesome in a kitchen or entry?

I always love Pottery Barn, and they’ve suceeded again with their assortment of wall organizers:

What’s your system for organizing? Or are you still working on that one?  If you’ve got a lovely set up, send me a photo and description and I’ll feature the photos in a blog post!

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Filed under Inspiration, Organization