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What They Don’t Know

Today for the 100th time in my life someone asked me if I had ever considered getting a gastric sleeve. I felt like I had just been punched in the gut. As my blood began to boil and my heart rate rose I tried to hold back the anger that was welling within me.

Had I considered it in my 27 years of life, no not really. This might shock some, but the thing is, I want to do this on my own. I know some people have found success with surgery, and that is great, but I know it is not for me. My problem won’t be fixed by a smaller stomach, my problem is mental, an internal struggle that can only be fixed by will power, consistency, hard work and determination. So for the 100th time I swallowed my pride and politely said no, it’s not for me.

Then came suggestions, and reasons why it could work. Books I should read or meal plans I should try. I plastered a smile, politely said goodbye and walked to my car. Tears started to fill my eyes, not out of sadness, but anger. Why a simple questions can provoke such frustration you ask? Well let me share.

My whole life, I have been made to feel ashamed of who I am. People never let you forget that you are overweight.

My family was always very quick to offer suggestions and weight loss tips, letting me know that I did not meet their standards of beauty. When my mother and father adopted me at the age of 11, I remember sitting outback on a swing with my adoptive dad. He was telling me about a conversation he had with my social worker. He said  when the social worker asked him why he wanted to adopt me, his response was because no one else would. Then when she asked him what their biggest struggle was, he said well look at her.  Her weight. That was my introduction to this family. Already I was a disappointment and my weight was a problem. As I grew up in the home I was always reminded of my size. My mom had me go to a weight loss group, my dad told me if I would lose the weight he would buy me a car. But I never did lose the weight.  Fast forward a few years later, as an adult, there was a time in my life where I wanted to lose weight, for me, and I did a 40 day fast. After this fast I lost 40 pounds, my dad told me he was proud of me. This was the only time in my life he had said that to me, and it has never been said again.

Let’s talk about the men who have judged me my whole life. They check me out and I know what they are thinking, she has a pretty face, but she is so fat. I had a guy friend once tell me that I had a pretty face, a great personality, but that being overweight was  something a lot of men couldn’t look past. Some men look at me and look disgusted, judging me on the spot. Thinking I should join a gym or go for a run. I had a guy I was serving at a restaurant once say, as I was walking away, “Go eat another spoonful of mayo hunny.” Oh how the men at his table laughed. I don’t even like mayo, in fact I hate it.

Then there are the women, the ones who look you up and down. You simply don’t fit in if you aren’t cool and thin like them. They take notice of how your clothes fit, if they are too snug or too frumpy. They think, why can’t you just eat a salad. You go out to eat and they judge whatever you order and what you eat. They tend give you a sly look when you say you are hungry, lets clear one thing up, just because you are fat, doesn’t mean that you don’t get hungry. My stomach still growls when I go without food.

Then there are just complete strangers who judge. I experience this a lot at the gym.  People looking at me walking the track, or panting on the stair climber. I can only imagine what they are thinking.  Probably go faster, work harder. I would like to see them grab a extra 100 pound weight , put it on their back and try to do what I am doing. I constantly feel like when I am doing strength training that they are thinking I should be doing cardio, little do they know I already did. The looks you get from strangers are the worse, they don’t even know you, but they are so quick to judge you and assume you are a lazy fat slob.

The thing is…everyone’s always judging me…strangers, friends and family. They defined me long ago, and I began to see what they saw, and I started to worry about what they think. I constantly am worrying what others are thinking. Did they notice I gained weight? Did they notice I lost weight? Can they tell I have been working out? Is this outfit unflattering? Are they judging how I work out?

What people don’t know is that you could never be as disgusted with me as I am with myself. What people don’t know is that I hit the gym 5-6 days per week pushing past my ankle pain and my back pain. That I wake up everyday thinking today will be different, that today I will stick with my diet. That I actually do eat healthy, but I also mess up. No I don’t sit  on my butt eating cheetos all day. Yes I do know that being my size is unhealthy, but I am working on it. They don’t know that I beat myself up mentally everyday, because I want t to lose the weight. They don’t realize how hard I fight, how I never give up. Yes I do wish I could wear  certain clothes, but I know I can’t. Do they know that everyday I see disappointment in people’s eyes?  Yes I do know how to lose weight, don’t we all? No I don’t need your advice.  People don’t realize how much harder working out is for me, that it is physically so much harder, taxing and tolling, yet I still do it. . They dont know how guilty I feel when I have a cheat meal or over indulge, and if I didn’t feel l guilty, their judgment/look sure made me feel that way. They don’t know that if I am going to see people I havn’t seen in awhile I worry for weeks before hand, worrying that they will be judging my weight. They dont know that I am constantly sore and in pain from my neck, to my back, to my ankels…but that I chose to keep moving anyways. They don’t know that my husband thinks I am beautiful the way I am.

The point is….people don’t know. 

Like I said. People defined me long ago…..and I am so over it.

I don’t  need your sympathy, I don’t need your advice, and I sure as hell don’t need your judgment. Who I am on the inside should not be determined by what I look like on the outside.

I am sharing this because maybe it will help some of you understand what is like to be overweight. Most of us who are overweight/obese are very aware of our situation, and most of us struggle with it everyday. Many of us are also trying to change for the better. So the next time you see  a fat person walking instead or running, realize that they may be going as fast as they can. When you see a fat person eating a cheeseburger, don’t make a snap judgment, maybe they slaved away at the gym for 2 hours and earned that cheeseburger, or maybe its their cheat meal for the week. Maybe think twice before you offer unsolicted advice on weightloss, because buddy, guess what, we have tried every diet in the world. Stop looking us up and down and assuming you know us.

Stop defining us.

I more than a number on a scale.

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This Road

“I’ve made more mistakes then I can count.
I’ve experienced the lowest of lows.
I know, its a long road. Yes, I know.
This time is different, I’d hear myself say.
This time I’ll make it, the darkness won’t get to me.
I know its a long road, yes I know.
People who don’t battle
the same darkness inside of me will never know.
It’s like fighting quicksand,
one step foward & then your pulled back in.
I know its a long road, yes I know.
As I grew tired and my body became weak,
that is when he reached for me.
A hand reached out and grabbed my soul
and He said, let it go.
He said, I know its a long road, yes I know.
I know your lost, but I will help you find your way.
I know its a long road, but the pain,
its time to let it go.
I know its a long road,
but I’ll help you carry on.
This road has never been easy,
but this road, this road is our song.
A beatiful disaster about a perfect storm.
It had to be real, it had to be raw,
it had to get to this point for me to fall before you God.
I know its a long road,
yes Lord I know, but I also know
Im not alone.”
-Cherri Gervais
 
This was a song/prayer that came to me tonight…..and I hope, no matter what season in life you are in, that it can help encourage you. Our strife, our struggle, our pain….we may not understand it, but it can be used for something beautiful, our stories shape us and our testemonies show His grace, His love and His beauty. This road is long, but my friends, we are not alone.

Pumpkin Greek Yogurt

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Have you ever tried those delicious Noosa Yogurts?? I love them, ecspecially the pumpkin one! However at almost $3 dollars for one small containter, I can’t afford to buy them often. So of course I thought, I can replicate this! And sure enough it was a breeze! This will be a THM S, which means it has less then 10 net carbs, and 5 or more grams of fat.

First off all you need is a can of pure pumpkin (no sugar added),  32 oz containter of Okios Triple Zero Vanilla greek yogurt, Stevia (I use PYURE brand from Walmart), creame cheese or 1/3 fat cream cheese, sea salt and pumpkin spice.

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You want to add your softened cream cheese to a bowl, then add pumpkin, stevia and pumpkin spice. Mix mix mix until the batter is well combined! Try to get it as smooth as possible. Next find some small containers (I am using pyrex glass containers) and spoon some pumpkin mixture into the glass. Now this isnt an exact science, but I would say mine comes to be about 1/4  cup or less of pumpkin….I do not measure when I am filling lthe containters however.

 

Next, once your pumpking is in, time to add the yogurt! You are going to want to keep the amount of yogurt you add to be less then 1/2 cup ( I prob use more around 1/4 cup), since we are trying to keep this low carb!

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Now you have a delicous, nutricious and low carb treat! I eat it for breakfasts, for snacks or for dessert! This little guy maxes about 8 servings and has apx 8 net carbs, 6-11 grams of protein (depending on how much yogurt you use per serving) and 5-6 grams of fat.

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Enjoy Friends!

-Cherri

 

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RECIPE:

Pumpkin Greek Yogurt

1 32 OZ container of Okios Vanilla Triple Zero Greek Yogurt

1 can of pure pumpkin

2 tbs of stevia

1 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin seasoning

1 package cream cheese ( I use 1/3  less fat)

Dash of sea salt

 

Mix softened cream cheese with pumpkin, stevia, pumpkin seasoning and sea salt. Mix until smooth and well combined. Next add to apx 8 small containters. Then add vanilla greek yogurt. Chill until ready to serve.

A New Year

Here we are, another year almost over.

What have we accomplished? Some of us have accomplished much, and others not so much. Which are you?

A new year brings a new perspective, a new resolution, a new outlook, a new goal…a new year brings a new hope.

365 days…..were they wasted or put to good use? Did you spend those days loving yourself and others? Did you spend those days pushing yourself to new heights? Was a day wasted?

The new year can be saddening and  also hopeful at the same time as we reflect on the things we didn’t accomplish and as we make new goals for the future. New goals to succeed or fail in.

Did 2016 suck? Did yesterday suck? Who cares. Lets stop focusing on the past and focus on the next day ahead of us. Stop worrying about the whole next year, and worry about today. Take it one day at a time. One success at a time. One failure at a time.

As for the past…forget those failures. Forget the short-comings. Forget the brokenness. Forget the regrets. Forget the mistakes. Forget the negative.

Lets focus on the good to come. The things we can change. The goals we can reach. Lets focus on the positive things ahead.

It is about to be a new year…..you have 365 days to change your world. Take it one day at a time and lets see what happens.

-Cherri

Protein Energy Bites

15306704_1810554182560682_6707848930408792064_n1Hey friends! It has been far too long! Due to some unfortunate and unforeseen events blogging was not much of a priority the last several weeks. BUT I am getting back into the swing of things before the New Year!

SO lets just get it out in the open, the past couple months I have not been diligent with my diet and as a result, my waistline has grown a bit. However this past week my husband and I got back into our workout routine and as many or most of you know, with the beginning of a workout regimen comes and increased appetite. For us, usually the first couple weeks as we are rebuilding/re-establishing muscle we notice our hunger grows.

So I like to keep our house stocked with protein packed snacks like almonds or cheese. But I also have a sweet tooth and  I like things that are easy to make and keep in the house to grab and go. I have seen many versions of Energy Bites on Pinterest made with honey and m&m’s…..well they look yummy but I don’t want all that sugar in my body! So I got in the kitchen and created a protein packed energy ball that is sweetened with a banana and stevia.

You will need quick oats, natural peanut butter, coconut oil, stevia, protein powder and a banana. Start by mixing your oats, peanut butter, coconut oil and stevia in a mixing bowl. Mix until well combined.

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Next you will want to mix in the banana. I just put the banana in the bowl and then mash it up then mix mix mix!! After the banana is mixed in add your protein powder. Now, mix up your batter and you should have a moist and thick dough. If the dough is too moist/soft that it doesn’t  roll into balls you may need to add another 1/4 cup of oats. I have found that the size of the banana you use can effect the moistness of the batter, so if the banana is to large you may have to use more oats.

Now that your batter is ready all that is left to do is roll into 1 inch balls! Yields apx. 10-12 protein balls. Of course you gotta try one or two, but after serving/eating, refrigerate left overs. Now you have a great protein packed snack full of delicious flavor at your beck and call. Perfect for a pre workout snack, mid day snack, or evening dessert!

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Protein Energy Bites:

1 1/2 cups of quick oats

1/2 cup of natural peanut butter

2 tbl of coconut oil ( I use refined to avoid coconut taste, but you can use unrefined if you prefer)

1 1/2 tsp of stevia ( I use the blend Pyure from Walmart)1

1  small/medium sized ripe banana

1 scoop of Whey Protein ( I use a plain sugar free whey, but use what you have)

Directions:

In a large mixing bowl combine oats, peanut butter, coconut oil and stevia. Mix until well combined. Next add banana and mash/mix in until well combined. Next add protein powder to batter. *note that if at this point the batter is to moist add another 1/4 cup of oats. Excess moisture could be due to size of banana used. Once batter is completely mixed roll into 1 inch balls. Yields apx 10-12 protein bites. Keep refrigerated.

 

Low-Carb Peanut Butter Cups

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Candy season has commenced! October is full of goblins, ghosts, pumpkins and chocolate…oh my! Many can enjoy the occasional treat and be totally fine…but for people like myself….self control and sweets don’t exactly mix! But lets be real….we still need yummy treats too!

There are many versions of skinny chocolate and sugar free peanut butter cups, but none of them have every really hit the spot for me. I am more of a mild chocolate fan, not a super chocolaty fan, so I make my sugar free chocolate with less cocoa and I also add peanut butter to give it a creamy flavor and texture.

For the peanut butter filling, I like to have a texture that is similar to Reese’s, were it isn’t completely smooth, but has a bit of a grainy peanut texture. So to get that texture I use almond flour and whey protein in my filing.

So lets begin! To start you want to put your coconut and peanut butter in a microwavable bowl and microwave for apx 20-30 seconds, until melted. Then mix mix mix! Next add your cocoa and stevia and again mix it up until well combined. I like to add a dash of mineral salt as well. Now that your chocolate is ready, pour a little bit into a mold of your choice. I used pumpkin silicon mold to be festive! But you could use anything really! I have used muffin tins with cupcake wrappers…I have even just used square Tupperware and once complete cut into small squares!

Once you have your mold of some sort slightly filled, place in freezer for about 5-10 minutes to harden. ( Keep in mind, if you use a bigger mold, it will take a bit longer to freeze. For instance, when I use Tupperware, it takes longer then when I use these small pumpkin molds.)

While chocolate is hardening we can begin making the peanut butter filling. Start by placing the butter in a bowl and microwave for about 20 seconds, or until softened/slightly melted. Next add your peanut butter and mix it together. Once mixed add in the gentle sweet (or finely ground stevia blend) and the why protein and almond flour. Mix it all together until well combined. You will have a thick, yet soft runny consistency, which is perfect for filling the molds.

So now pull out the harden chocolate and layer a good amount of the peanut butter filling on top of the chocolate. Place back in the freezer for another 5-10 minutes until peanut butter hardens. Once hardened, pull out of freezer and top again with the chocolate, and place back in freezer.

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Once hardened, pull out, and pop out of mold. Now you have a delicious chocolaty, peanut buttery treat without all the guilt!Keep these stored in the refrigerator so that they don’t melt, and now you have a go to snack or a delicious dessert! Enjoy and Bon Appetite!

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Happy eating, happy trick or treating, and God Bless!

-Cherri

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Low Carb Chocolate Peanut Butter Cups

Chocolate:

4 tbs of coconut oil ( I use refined to have less coconut taste)

2 tbs of all natural peanut butter

3 tsp of cocoa

1 tbs of stevia blend (I use the Pyure brand from Walmart)

Dash of mineral salt

 

Peanut Butter Filling:

1/2 stick of butter

4 tbs of all natural peanut butter

4 tbs of gentle sweet (or a finely ground stevia blend- tip: grind stevia blend in a coffee                                                    grinder to get a powder sugar texture)

1 scoop of Whey Protein

2 tbs of ground almond flour

dash of mineral salt

 

DIRECTIONS:

Melt coconut oil and 2 tbs of peanut butter for about 20 seconds until melted. Next add 1 tbs of stevia blend, cocoa and dash of mineral salt. Once mixed, add a little bit to the bottom of the molds. Place mold in freezer for apx 5-10 minutes. While chocolate is hardening, begin the peanut butter mixture. Place 1/2 stick of butter in microwavable bowl and microwave for about 20 seconds until softened/slightly melted. Next add 4 tbs of peanut butter and mix until smooth. Then add whey protein, almond flour, dash of mineral salt and gentle sweet/powdered Stevie until mixed. Next pull hardened chocolate molds out of freezer and fill generously with the peanut butter filling and then place back in freezer for apx 5-10 minutes. Once hardened, pull out and top the mold with the remaining chocolate mixture, place in freezer again until hardened. Once hardened pop out of mold and you are ready to serve. Keep leftovers refrigerated.

*I was able to fill two molds worth of chocolate with this recipe. Yielded apx. 20 pieces (depending on size this may vary). 20 pieces average 2.75 carbs per piece of candy ** Note, this is using gentle sweet, if you use a powdered stevia blend, your carb count could be less.

In HIS Name

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“Today is the day. Yes today is the day I am going to sit down and blog, today….” was the mantra I chanted in my head as I poured a cup of coffee and mentally prepared to configure all my thoughts to put to paper. The past couple weeks have been complete radio silence, and I knew I needed to get back on the air. So let me explain why you haven’t heard from me lately and what God has been doing in my life

Let me start by saying, the enemy is smart and cunning. He never relents, he never ceases. You win one battle against him, and he strikes again.  I know we have all been here, those frustrating moments when we break down and can’t take anymore, ‘ONE THING AFTER ANOTHER, WILL I EVER CATCH A BREAK?!” It is moments like these when we most need to seek guidance and comfort from God, yet this is often the time that we start get angry with God, start turning to the world for wisdom and understanding.

Raise your hand if you have ever been confused or angry with God? My hand is held high….I have in fact been so upset and confused by Gods actions or lack thereof. I was there this past week.

Things were going good, after a very lengthy and sporadic track record of going to the gym less regularly, Matt and I had finally buckled down and were hitting the gym 5 times a week for the past few weeks. I was just beginning to see some weight loss and some muscle gains, the some what in-shape body I had worked really hard for back in Feb-June was coming back and I was getting excited.( After our vacation in June, we were not as disciplined with our workout regimen and lost a lot of muscle and tone.) Then on Tuesday morning of the third week of our new routine, a returning affliction happened upon me.

It came like a bolt of lightning. The horrible stabbing pain in my lower left abdomen. I started to panic, was it happening again? I couldn’t do this again!

Let me explain, back in February a few weeks after Matt and I started working out, I was plagued with a horrible pain in my lower left abdomen. This pain was debilitating, left me unable to work for several days,  and led to multiple doctor visits and bills. Last time I went to the doctor three times, and the hospital twice and still got no answers to what was causing the pain. After about a week the pain began to subside…and after another week was completely gone. I chalked it up to a freak thing and figured it wouldn’t happen again.

And then last Tuesday came. Matt and I had went to the gym that morning and we were back home and I was preparing us something to eat and BOOM all of a sudden the pain came on, out of nowhere. This time the pain was worse. I wasn’t able to sleep in my bed for a solid week (the pain was worse when I laid down or stood up). I was confined to my recliner chair for the better part of a week. This time I couldn’t stand for very long with out getting nauseous because the pain was so bad. This led to several emotional break downs. I was tired, I was in pain, and I didn’t know what was wrong. I had went to the doctor again, and again didn’t really get any answers. Finally on Saturday morning I just broke down and didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t live with this….I couldn’t handle this much longer…so finally I asked my Husband to open the bible and read me something.

This is what he opened up to and read: “When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?”-John 5:6

It hit me like a ton of bricks. Do I want to get well? Well of course I do! But did my actions speak to that? Was I walking in faith, or speaking death into my life? Of course my pride bubbled up,  I had prayed and asked God for healing, asked him to set me free of this pain and nothing but radio silence! I had prayed, he just hand’t delivered.

I felt led to crack open a book called  Jesus The Healer by E.W. Kenyon. I opened up to page 44 and the first thing I saw at the bottom of the page read:

Don’t try to get your healing.

God has given it to you.

Don’t try to believe. You are a believer and all things are yours.

Don’t talk about it. It breeds more doubt.

I sat there and reflected for a brief moment and hen I read the next chapter, out loud to Matt. The chapter was focusing on the power that is in the name of Jesus Christ, and the power that is in our words.

Expert from the book:

“Our work is that of destroying the works of the adversary. The weapon we are to use is found in the thirteenth and fourteenth verses. (of John 14)”And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If ye shall ask anything in my name, that will I do.” The word “Ask” means “Demand. His Name is to be used in the sense that we see it used in Acts 3 by Peter who spoke to the impotent man at the gate of the temple saying, “in the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.” This is not prayer. This is casting out demons in that Name. There is healing for the sick in that Name. There is power to break disease and sickness in the hearts and lives of men in that Name. ”

“Disease is defeated by your confession of the Word.

Disease gains the ascendancy when you confess the testimony of your senses.

Satan is whipped with words.

You are healed with words.

Make your lips do their duty. Fill them with His Word.”

This was it! I WAS indeed speaking death into my life. I was speaking my symptoms into life. I was constantly complaining and claiming death and sickness over my life. I had prayed asking God for healing, but, healing was already mine, I just had to receive it! I turned to google, doctors, and the world, day in and day out, searching for an answer, trying to figure out what was wrong with me, trying to claim a disease over me. But I didn’t need to turn to the world, I didn’t need to figure out what was wrong, I just needed to cast it out, to claim VICTORY in the NAME OF JESUS CHRIST! I had to stop trying to believe I was healed, and just accept that I WAS healed.

So that morning (Saturday) in the Name of Jesus I cast out any sickness and pain, and deception and death from my life. I claimed healing and victory in my life, by his stripes I was healed. I was done with these symptoms. I would no succumb to this any longer. I was healed and that was that.

So my attitude changed that morning. I decided I was healed, I wasn’t waiting to be healed, I already was healed. I was no longer going to speak death into my life. Every complaint, every word that dripped with death and sickness the enemy used to afflict me. So I would not claim sickness any longer, I would only breathe life.

That day, I supernaturally got so much better suddenly. The pain was a mere fraction of what it had been. I was able to stand up for longer then a minute. I was able to function more normally. Over the next days I kept claiming healing and I progressively got better. I was already healed, my body was just catching up. I was so mad that I had wasted my whole week. I could of experienced this freedom from pain so much sooner if I hadn’t been so stubborn and stupid. But I learned such a great lesson….GUYS….THERE IS POWER IN THE NAME OF JESUS!

Our God is Victorious in all things. IT IS FINISHED! He already payed the price so that we could be saved and be healed! He has already offered us healing, we just have to claim it over our lives. HE IS THE ANSWER! He can and will supernaturally heal us if we let him. We have to get out of our own way and stop trying to do it ourselves and stop turning to the world for answers. Yes, there is POWER in the NAME OF JESUS!

I hope this finds you well. Just know that whatever your affliction, whether death and sickness, heart break or poverty, lust or gluttony, fear or worry…..there is freedom in Jesus. He can and will break EVERY CHAIN if you will allow him to. I know better then anyone, it is easy to get in our own way, to feel stuck, to feel hopeless….but we have to let go  of all that. Let go of the doubt, the fear, the uncertainty, the pain, and the control in our lives. We are not meant to walk with all the answers, we are meant to walk by faith, we were designed to follow and trust God, not the world, and especially not ourselves. Remember…..IT IS FINISHED.

Yes my friends, the battle has already been one. It is finished.

I pray blessings over all of you, and wish you a happy and healthy week.

-Cherri G.

 

Low-Carb Pumpkin Cheesecake-Cake

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This recipe creation is my spin/take on the original Trimtastic Cake recipe in the Trim Healthy Mama cook book. They gave me a foundation to start building on and I adjusted and tweaked to fit my personal taste. The original recipe is a chocolate zucchini cake…but I do not like chocolate…shocking I know! So since it is pumpkin season, I figured why not make a pumpkin cake instead!

The original recipe calls for 3/4 cup of THM baking blend, but, I have read that if you are taking out the cocoa to add an additional 1/4 cup. Well since I am out of the baking blend, I needed to have an equivalent (1 cup) of a low carb flour. So I used the traditional 1-1-1 ratio of almond flour, coconut flour and ground flax meal.

Next, instead of the zucchini I substituted 1 cup of pumpkin puree, to give it flavor, texture and moisture. I also added cinnamon to give it a warm flavor. I added the rest of the ingredients that the rest of the Trimtastic recipe called for. After mixing everything together, I realized that I had a really thick batter, almost bread like. I knew that I needed to make it thinner, so this is when I decided to add 1/2 cup of cream and 1/2 cup of almond milk. This created a much smoother and softer cake batter. I poured that batter into a lightly greased baking dish.

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One of my favorite combos is pumpkin and cheesecake, so I decided to add a cheesecake top to the cake. I added cream cheese, sour cream, stevia, cream, and an egg into a food processor and blended until smooth. I poured this on top of the cake batter. Next I baked the cake for 50 minutes at 350 degrees.

When I pulled the cake out of the oven I had a beautifully cooked cake! Now I had to wait for it to cool so I could see if it tasted as good as it looked. I let the cake cool for over an hour before I cut into it, and when I did cut into it, it was PERFECT!

I created a glaze to drizzle over the cake to add a bit of extra sweetness and moisture. I combined almond milk, sour cream, powdered stevia, ground ginger, cinnamon and maple extract. This gave me a milky glaze that was the perfect addition to this moist, delicious cake!

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Now with the coffee poured, the cake cut and drizzled…it was time to try it. IT WAS AMAZING! Moist, perfectly sweet, full of pumpkin and spiced flavor. The cream cheese topping was delicious, the pumpkin cake itself moist and great texture and the glaze just took this cake to the next level! One of the best low carb desserts I have made! I couldn’t wait to share it!

This recipe is worth trying, so give it a shot and let me know what you think! Thanks so much for reading and enjoy!

-Cherri

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Low Carb Pumpkin Cheesecake- Cake

Ingredients:

Pumpkin Cake:

1/3 cup coconut flour

1/3 cup ground almond flour

1/3 cup ground flax meal

1/2 cup of heavy whipping cream

1/2 cup of almond milk

1 tsp of cinnamon (or pumpkin spice)

3/4 cup of gentle sweet

1/8 tsp of pure stevia

1 tsp baking soda

1 tsp baking powder

4 eggs

1 cup of pumpkin puree

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Cheesecake Topping:

4 tbls cream cheese

2 tbls sour cream

1 egg

2 tbls  heavy whipping cream

1  1/2 tbls of stevia blend or non sugar sweetener

Glaze:

1 tbls almond milk

1 tbls sour cream

2 tbls powdered stevia blend (I used ground Pyure, a brand from Walmart)

Dash of powdered ginger

Dash of cinnamon

Splash of Maple Extract

Directions:

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees. Put all of your cake ingredients (listed above)  into a bowl and blend until thoroughly mixed then pour batter into a slightly greases baking dish. I used an 8×8 baking pan. Now place cream cheese, sour cream,heavy cream, stevia, and egg into a food processor or blender and blend until smooth. Now pour mixture over cake mix. Now place pan in the oven and cook for apx. 50 minutes.When cake is finished pull from oven and let cool. Proceed to make drizzle, in a small bowl mix almond milk, sour cream powdered stevia, ginger, cinnamon, maple extract together until smooth and pour over top of cake once cooled. Cake is good served warm, even better served chilled! Keep refrigerated after cake is cooled/served.

Low-Carb Cookies & Cream Ice Cream

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After many episodes of Chopped and Food Network Star, I felt I was finally ready to attempt to make my very own ice cream! So last night I bravely stepped into the kitchen, put on my apron and created a delicious yet simple cookies and cream ice cream! I wanted a easy recipe that I could make without an ice cream maker, since I don’t have one.

First I started with the base. I combined heavy whipping cream, almond milk and vanilla extract into a sauce pan and turned the heat on to medium-low and let the cream slowly warm.  You don’t want the cream to come to a boil, just a nice warm temperature.

While the cream base is warming (make sure to keep an eye on it and stir so it does not boil) time to mix the eggs. Put two eggs yolks (remove egg whites) into a bowl and add the stevia. You should have a thick mixture of egg and stevia. Once the cream is warm, slowly add in the egg/sweetener mixture while continuously whisking. It is important to slowly add the mixture and keep mixing so the eggs do not curdle. You want a smooth silky mixture. Once all egg mixture is added continue to stir over medium heat for 2-3 minutes. The mixture will be a little frothy on the top.

Now pour your ice cream mixture into a metal pan or a bowl or baking dish covered with foil. Place in the freezer and let chill for 4-5 hours or overnight.

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Now it is time to start the cookie crumble! Melt your butter in the microwave and then add almond flour and gentle sweet (or equivalent sweetener of your choice). Mix it all together then add cocoa and continue mixing! Now pour batter onto a plate topped with wax or parchment paper, and then place in freezer to chill.

Fast forward to when Ice cream is chilled/frozen. Pull ice cream out of freezer, remove foil and place back in bowl and set on counter for 5-10 minutes. While ice cream is thawing take out the cookie mixture and break it up/crumble it into a bowl. Add 2 more tsp of cocoa and mix/crush mixture to create a cookie crumble. You could use a food processor if you would rather, I just used a bowl this time. Now your cookie crumble is ready to be mixed into the ice cream.

 

By now your ice cream should have softened a bit, if not, let it thaw a tad longer. Once soft enough to stir/mix add in the cookie crumble. Once mixed in, place back in freezer to set. Once chilled again your ice cream will be ready to served!

Because this is a low carb ice cream, it will be harder and will need to sit out 5-10 minutes before serving. This is because of all the sugar, milk and other ingredients that have been withheld from this recipe that help to make traditional ice cream softer. But, this stuff is worth the wait! Trust me!

There you have it folks! A delicious, low-carb, easy peasy cookies and cream ice cream! Happy eating!

-Cherri

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Low-Carb Cookies & Cream Ice Cream

Ingredients:

Cream Base:

1 pint of Heavy Whipping Cream

1/4 cup of Almond Milk

2 tsp Vanilla Extract

5 TBLS of Stevia Blend (*This was the perfect sweet taste for me, test your base after its is done cooking to see if you want it any sweeter*)

2 Egg Yolks

2 pinches/dashes of mineral salt

Cookie Crumble:

1/2  stick (1/4cup) of melted butter

1/2 cup of Almond Flour

2 tbls of Gentle Sweet

2 tsps of Cocoa

*Additional 1 tsp of cocoa for coating

Directions:

Combine cream, almond milk and vanilla extract in sauce pan and turn to medium-low heat. While base is warming (careful not to let boil) crack and separate two egg yolks. Toss egg whites. Now add 5 tablespoons of stevia to the egg yolks and mix until all combined. Once cream is warmed, slowly add egg mixture while continuously stirring/mixing. Once all mixture is combined, continue to stir and cook over medium/low heat for 3-4 minutes. Base should be smooth and silky and a little frothy. Pour base into a metal baking dish, or a regular bowl/dish covered in foil. Place in freezer for 4-5 hours or overnight. To make the cookie crumble, melt butter and then combine almond flour and gentle sweet (or sweetener of choice) until thoroughly mixed. Now add cocoa. Pour batter/mixture onto wax/parchment paper and place in freezer to chill until ice cream is frozen. Once Ice cream is solid, pull out of freezer and remove from foil. Place back in bowl. Set aside and let thaw for apx. 10 minutes (or until able to stir.) Break apart cookie mixture and place in bowl or food processor. Add remaining tsp of cocoa  to mixture and begin to  mix/crumble. Once ice cream is soft enough to stir, add cookie crumble in. Place container back in freezer to reset. (Depending on how thawed mixture was, could take 1-2 hours). When ready to serve ice cream, pull from freezer and allow to thaw for apx 10 minutes before serving. Now BON APPETITE!

Change Is In The Air

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There are some things that take you back. Certain songs, certain smells, certain people….some things just take you back to a good place, a bad place, a sad place, a happy place….any place at all really. As I am sitting here typing this I have a candle lit, and for some reason the smell reminds me of my honeymoon, and my first days of marriage. Why? I have no idea…perhaps I had a similar candle back then, or maybe the smell is similar to one that was on our honeymoon. But…isn’t that just weird…how our senses our so in tune with our memory? One second your in the real world and in a flash you are in memory land.

I feel like fall does that to me. Does it do that to you? Or am I alone in this. For some reason every fall, I get so nostalgic. Like a happy and a sad nostalgic…if that makes any sense at all. I don’t know why it happens, but it does. I think that, even though January is technically the beginning of a new year, that we actually associate fall with a new year, a new beginning. Fall is the end of summer, and the beginning of the four seasons.

With new beginnings come new aspirations, but also old regrets……new chances, but old memories. It is a time to reflect on what was, and what could of been. It is an opportunity to change the things we hate, but also to appreciate the things in the past that have molded us into who we are today.

We have made mistakes…we have also had some of the best days of our lives. I think the enemy wants to use this time to make us feel sad…like the best years are over, that the crazy journey of our youth is over. But…it is such a lie. The past can be sweet, it can be sad, it can be joyous or sorrowful….but the future…that is unknown…that is a beautiful mystery. We have so much life ahead of us, and we cannot let the change of seasons define our spirit.

Yes Fall brings new opportunities, new chances, new dreams….while the leaves our dying, our spirits can be growing, our mentality can be sharpening, our emotions can be embracing. This time of year is so empowering, so encouraging, so eye opening.

I pray that while those beautifully colored leaves begin to fall, as the air becomes cool and crisp, as those fall scented candles come out and the baking commences, that we take a moment to reflect on what was, and what could be.  Look around, take it in, soak it up….these moments are worth remembering. Lets slow down and enjoy the the beauty that surrounds us. Lets breathe deep and slow and welcome the change that is in the air.

Take a walk. Make a goal. Reach out to a loved one. Forgive an old friend. Make yourself a priority. Get out of the house. Take time to reflect. Say a heart felt prayer. Open up God’s word and remember his promises. Tell those close to you that you love them. Look at old pictures. Forgive yourself. Let go of the past hurts. Reminisce on the good. Look forward to the new. Embrace the new seasons….embrace change…embrace yourself….and let your senses lead you into a beautiful new year.

Happy Fall Ya’ll!
God Bless!

-Cherri