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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Oatmeal Brownie Bars

Pin ItOatmeal Brownie Bars | The Sweets Life
Oatmeal Brownie Bars 
I’m really really striving to live a bit more simply these days. We live in a world that constantly tells us we need more more more, but I’m making a sincere effort to ignore those voices and avoid a life of excess. I try to think twice before heading to the checkout with two shirts that are already similar to three I already own. I’m making a list before I go to Target and not allowing myself to stray from it (most of the time…). I’m only buying enough food to get us through the week and trying  not to let any of it go bad before we consume it.

I wish I could say I applied the same principle to these brownie oat bars. My intentions were pure. I made the pan of these and figured I’d keep a few and give the rest away. If there’s one thing I don’t need an excess of, it’s a pan full of butter and sugar! I made the recipe, cut them into small squares, and divided them into a few freezer bags, figuring I’d freeze them until it was time to give them away.

And then I tried one. And then another. And before I knew it, I had (admittedly, selfishly and excessively!) decided these weren’t leaving our house! The reason you only see one measly picture of them is because I was so smitten, I couldn’t be bothered to worry about capturing the perfect photograph. In my defense, I did share of few of them, but if I’m being honest, the majority of them were tucked away in my freezer where I enjoyed one or three as a guilty pleasure after putting Brecken to bed. I will absolutely be making these again, and I will absolutely (not?) be sharing them! They’re salty and sweet and absolutely perfect straight from the freezer!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Shaved Carrot Zucchini Salad



Shaved Carrot Zucchini Salad | The Sweets Life
Shaved Carrot Zucchini Salad 
 I really like efficiency. There are times when I want to linger and enjoy the scenic route, but 97% of the time, I’m looking for ways to be more efficient. It’s an innate personality trait (flaw?). Striving for efficiency means I iron and lay out my work outfits over the weekend, simply to save those 5 minutes each morning when I’d normally frantically pull something from my closet and run the iron over it a few times. Striving for efficiency means I often eat the same breakfast over and over again, simply because it’s one less thing to think about when I’m doing the dreaded chore of packing my lunch each day.
Pin ItShaved Carrot Zucchini Salad | The Sweets Life
Efficiency came into play in this recipe, when I read the instructions that ordered me to use a vegetable peeler to get a pile of carrot and zucchini ribbons. Ain’t nobody got time for that! Instead, I pulled the food processor from the cabinet and used one of the blades to shred thin discs of the two vegetables. It might not be as pretty as a ribbon salad would’ve been, but it was a heck of a lot faster, making me a heck of a lot happier!
Shaved Carrot Zucchini Salad | The Sweets Life

Despite how you choose to prepare and eat this salad, I think you’ll be pleased with the outcome. It’s an atypical side dish, a nice change of pace from a green salad or grilled vegetables or kale chips, our standbys. It can be made ahead of time and keeps well in the fridge. Best of all, it’s quick and easy!

One Year Ago: Sausage and Egg Casserole with Mushrooms, Sun-dried Tomatoes, and Mozzarella
Two Years Ago: Banana Nut Granola Bars with Dried Cranberries and Asian Turkey Lettuce Wraps
Three Years Ago: Loaded Baked Potato Dip and Asian Edamame Salad
Four Years Ago: Southwestern Chicken Salad and Whole Chicken on the Grill