Be Kind. Eat Kind. My Kind of “Kind” Bars

Last week was a huge challenge and stress for me.  I had some pretty crazy things happen and it has thrown me off balance.  My focus has been pulled in many directions.  This week I’m struggling with the after effects of said craziness.  I have truly appreciated the kindness of friends, family and complete strangers recently.  I am purposefully noticing kindness.  Have you ever taken the time to notice random acts of kindness?   I’m not talking the grandiose gestures that get media attention.  I’m talking about the genuine kindness of everyday people you cross paths with as you go about your day. The grocery clerk who wishes good thoughts to you and your family during a difficult time, the person who holds the door because your hands are full, or the couple on a walk who stop to ask if you’re okay and stay to help when it’s clear you need it.   There really are genuinely good and kind people in this world.  When we are constantly bombarded with other types of messages about our fellow human beings,  we tend to forget kindness truly does exist.  I would rather focus on that than be sucked into the negative culture of our world.   So, I focus on the positive things happening around me, take in kindness and give kindness.

As I have mentioned many times in past posts, when my life gets hectic and stress filled, interrupting my usual routine I often forget to eat.  Having ready made, quick foods on hand are essential.   I was motivated to re-create a version of my favorite grab and go bars I spend too much money on when I shop.  You know those bars in grocery stores, KIND bars?  They are an energy type bar made of nuts and dried fruits.  I’m addicted to them.  They have been a regular shopping item that goes into my basket for a long time.  I like the protein punch and energy it provides.  It’s a fantastic portable snack for me.  However, in my ongoing attempts to cut back on expenses so I can save money toward my goals, I am trying to lower my grocery bill.   I decided to get creative and try to make my own kind of bars.

I think they turned out pretty fantastic.  They even got a thumbs up from my colleague.  I cut them into nine bars similar in size to the actual store brand, wrapped them individually and stored them in the fridg. It is the perfect on-the-go snack for me.

Give these a try.  You’ll be happy you did!  Enjoy!

Kinda Kind Nut Bars

Prepare a square or small rectangular baking dish.  Mine was an 8×6 glass baking dish.  Line with plastic or parchment paper.

In a medium bowl mix:

1 cup toasted almonds

1/4 cup toasted cashews, chopped

1/4 cup dried cranberries

2 Tbsp hemp seeds

1/2 cup puffed rice cereal

1/4 cup dried unsweetened coconut

Stir until combined

On the stove top, add to a pan:

1/4 cup coconut oil

1/2 cup maple syrup

1/3 cup brown sugar

1 Tbsp vanilla

pinch of salt

Melt on low heat and stir until combined.  Let cool a bit and pour over nut mixture in bowl.  Mix with hands to incorporate fully, making sure all ingredients are coated.  Dump mixture into prepared baking dish and spread it evenly across the pan with fingers, pressing it down just a bit to mold it together.  Store in fridg until firm.  Cut into bars.

These have a lot of sugar!  Enjoy in moderation!  Ha!  Look who’s talking…..try to anyway!

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The Versatile Blogger Award & The Dragon’s Loyalty Award

I was honored with a nomination by Detox Mama (http://wp.me/46j66) for a dual award; the Versatile Blogger Award & the Dragon’s Loyalty Award.  Thank you so much, Detox Mama!  I truly appreciate the support as I “learn the ropes” of blogging.  Detox Mama is passionate about nutrition and health.   She blogs about her detox experiences while sharing wholesome, organic recipes for you to try at home.  Some of Detox Mama’s recipes have become my favorites to play around with in the kitchen!
versatilebloggerThe Versatile Blogger Award looks at the quality of the writing and the uniqueness of the subjects covered. It also looks at the level of love displayed in the words on the virtual page as well as the quality of the photos and the love that went into taking them.
dragonsloyaltyaward1The Dragon’s Loyalty Award is an awarded to the loyal follower who frequently likes and/or comments on blogs, sort of like a “high 5” for showing the love.
Both awards require that I share 7 facts about myself and then pass on the awards to 15 fellow bloggers. Since these were awarded to me together, I will award them together as well. I then thank and tag the person who nominated me, then tag and notify my nominees.

7 facts about me:

  1. I rarely listen to music yet I hum random songs all day long.
  2. I want to have my own kind of food revolution like Jamie Oliver (http://www.jamieoliver.com/us/foundation/jamies-food-revolution/about_jamie_oliver)
  3. I am social worker turned food radical, working cook/chef & have always worked for non-profits in both fields.
  4. I am a native Oregonian.
  5. I have a secret (not so much now!) desire to be a race car driver.
  6. I have had many hobbies in the past including card making, glass & wood painting and glass magnets.
  7. I am about to start a new craft project involving small terra cotta pots!  I think it will be lots of fun!

 

Honestly, I am just new enough in this blogging environment and dipping my feet in slowly.  I admit I really don’t know 15 bloggers well enough to pass on these awards.  However, I wish to share 8 of my favorites.

Here are my nominations:

  1. Holistic Fitness & Wellness, http://wordpress.com/read/blog/id/63498752/
  2. I Need A Feed, http://wp.me/2Olpe
  3. Cat at Things My Belly Likes, http://wp.me/28ZQb
  4. Kate at Gluten-Free For Lunchboxes,  http://wp.me/P2EGNb-2
  5. Wise Monkey Abroad, http://wp.me/3vWrS
  6. Outlook In Life, http://wp.me/2VodR
  7. Espirational, http://wp.me/2ynnO
  8. My Foray Into Food Storage, http://wp.me/4hATB

 

Please answer 7 facts about yourself, tag & thank the blogger who nominated you, & nominate 15 new bloggers (or as many as you can).  Tag them on your blog and notify them on theirs.