Christmas and Hannukah are one week away and the last minute gift search is officially on! But let's be honest about holiday gifts...so often, we end up receiving presents we neither asked for nor needed. Don't get me wrong! I love giving and recieving thoughtful, creative, and special gifts. But I do not love giving gifts that I know will not support the recipient in his or her lifestyle, goals, or overall joy. This inevitably is the case when the gift is purchased last minute at a big box store (guilty).
So today, I want to provide you with some ideas for gifts to give that will support peace, health, and joy!
I love giving healthy snacks as gifts, especially if participating in one of those $10-$20 gift exchanges. Try one of these ideas:
-A collection of sweets that are free of refined sugar (stevia-sweetened chocolate, honey-sweetened peppermint patties, and brown rice crispy treats, for example). Whole Foods and Trader Joes always have a good selection of these types of sweets.
-A gormet movie night kit: organic popping corn with seasoned salt and popping instructions and a bottle of dry red wine (the type with the lowest sugar content).
-The New Year's Sugar Detox Kit: assorted roasted nuts, nut butters, freeze dried and salted vegetables (like green beans), organic beef jerkey, and a link to my sugar detox blog post. ;)
For Promoting Peace at Home:
These would make fun hostess gifts that will actually be used!
-A lavender soy candle. There are so many good quality candles these days and lavender is timelessly peaceful.
-Wintery or Valentinesy dish towels. If you're being hoseted by someone who loves to celebrate seasonal holidays, this will give her something to look forward to in the new year.
-A bouquet of the month subscription. Wanting to gift your host something really special? A subscription (browse this one at The Bouqs) will be a reminder of your gratitude for months and months to come.
For the Busy:
Do you have someone in your life who will be entering a stressful season post-holidays? Maybe a family in your circle is expecting a baby, taking care of a terminally ill family member, or simply starting a new job. These gifts will support!
-A massage. Nothing says I love you like the power of healthy touch. Period.
-A gift certificate for a cleaning service...because a clean house promotes all sorts of inner calm!
-A meal prep gift certificate! Yes, this is my shameless plug for Nourished! gifts, but for good reason. I really and truly have seen how having healthy meals on hand has supported busy families in their health goals this year. Order yours by Wednesday, 12/21/16!
Happy Holidays, friends. May you stay peaceful, healthy, and joyful!
Gluten free baking is rarely foolproof...it usually takes a few tries when developing a recipe to come up with the perfect texture, temperature, and baking time. I've been pretty excited about the combination of sour cream and cranberries for the past month, so when I needed a new recipe for my gluten free clients, I looked to inspiration from the Minimalist Baker. The "bones" of her blackberry cornmeal muffins provided me with some ideas for how to turn my new flavor combination idea into an awesome muffin! So here you have it:
Gluten Free Cranberry Sour Cream Muffins
For the cranberry sauce:
12 oz raw cranberries
Juice of 1 navel orange
1/4 c honey
1 t allspice
For the muffins:
2 T honey
1/2 c coconut sugar
1 1/4 c organic, full fat sour cream
1 c cornmeal
1 c oat flour
1/4 c almond meal
Pinch sea salt
1 1/2 t baking soda
In a small saucepan, combine all ingredients for the cranberry sauce. Bring to a slow simmer and allow to continue simmering for 20 minutes, until cranberries have burst and sauce begins to thicken. Strain sauce over the sink and measure out 1 cup (depending on how large your orange was, the sauce may produce slightly more that a cup...reserve any extra for a homemade salad dressing or something!). Set aside to cool.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees and greese a 12 cup muffin tin. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, honey, coconut sugar, and sour cream. In a separate bowl, combine cornmeal, oat flour, almond meal, sea salt, and baking soda. Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir to combine. Fold in cooled cranberry sauce thoroughly. Spoon batter into muffin cups (not quite to the brim) and bake for 25 minutes, or until edges begin to brown and centers are set. Turn out onto a cooling rack to cool before serving. Enjoy!