Vanilla Seed High-Protein Granola (Vegan + Gluten-Free)

So, as I've mentioned I'm basically outdoors all summer for my job on the river, and I have had a protein shake most mornings since. Since cutting back on animal products— this Bob's Red Mill protein powder is vegan—I've been careful to diversify where I get my protein from, sometimes chickpeas, sometimes nuts and seeds, and a lot of the time it's shakes. 

I was a little worried to bake with this powder because it has probiotics in it and I worry that the heat is damaging to them, and I love that they're included in here, because I think health begins in the gut. That's not an original idea, it was Hippocrates who said, "all disease begins in the gut." At any rate, I love drinking this is as just a plain shake with some almond milk because of the high probiotic content, and the pre-biotic fiber, because keeping my digestion healthy has been no small feat running around eating anything and everything that is available to me. No joke, I'm hungry all of the time. I need all the snacks, which is how I decided to make granola because eating plain pumpkin and sunflower seeds all day can get old. This protein powder is pretty sweet on it's own, on account of the monk fruit. I still decided to add the agave nectar to get the pieces to stick together nicely in this grain-free granola, just keep in mind it'll come out very sweet and vanilla-y, not that that's a bad thing, but just an FYI. 

Here's what you'll need:

1/2 cup pumpkin seeds

1/2 cup sunflower seeds

1/4 cup dried cranberries

1/4 cup agave nectar - you can sub honey, or maple syrup as well

1/2 cup Bob's Red Mill Vanilla Protein Powder (there's even a coupon)

2 Tablespoons of flax seeds

1 Tablespoon of hot water 

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon lemon extract - you can sub lemon zest also


Pre-heat oven to 350°

In a large bowl mix together agave nectar, protein powder, and salt until well blended 

In a separate, small container mix in hot water with flax seed, let sit for 1-2 minutes (this helps it to gel) 

Add all remaining ingredients including flax seed and mix until thoroughly combined, it should be pretty sticky at this point

Place mix directly on a baking sheet, spreading carefully to keep larger pieces together. 

Bake for 15 minutes stirring very well half way through

Bake until golden brown adding on in 5 minutes intervals until it's reached the desired crunchiness for your taste.  


I really wish I had more edited mountain shots for you but for right now I just have these flowers. They'll have to do. Enjoy your summer, and here's $3 off of Bob's Red Mill Nutritional Boosters

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Red Cabbage Slaw with Lime Cashew Dressing (Vegan)

I started a new job yesterday as a river rafting photographer. Honestly, sometimes I surprise myself with the jobs I pick up. Aside from the fact that it's just really nice to spend afternoons on the river, I really am getting a lot out of it. I have a lot of time to read, for one, while waiting for the boats to come through. Secondly, people are really happy to get to share their experience. You know it's hard to get a picture when you're in the middle of Class IV rapid and that's what I'm there for, so you can show everyone you did it. I did it, and it's definitely not easy. If you knew anything about my athleticism, you'd know it's severely lacking. Anyway, I spend most of my time in what I like to call yin mode, which is less about action and more about becoming more sensory. Touching things, putting things together how you want them, having all the feelings that kind of thing. It's good for me here and again to be more out there than in here. It makes me appreciate the 'in here' more.

I love this messy salty little salad. It's got a few of my go-tos in the veggie department being bell peppers and cucumbers, both of which I could basically eat all day. Red cabbage is another one of my favorites, although I don't eat it nearly as often. This salad comes out crunch, tangy, and the dressing is smooth and has a creamy texture due in large part to the cashew butter. 


For the salad:

1 cucumber - shredded with a potato peeler

1 carrot - shredded with a potato peeler

1 yellow bell pepper - sliced thin with a mandolin slicer

1/4 head of red cabbage - shredded, I used a cheese grater

1/4 cup of cilantro 

1/4 cup of green onions - chopped in small pieces 

For the dressing:

2 tablespoons of cashew butter

Juice from one lime or about 2 tablespoons 

1 tablespoon coconut oil

1 tablespoon olive oil 

salt and pepper to taste 

pinch of cayenne 

2 teaspoons of sesame seeds 


1. Mix all of your salad ingredients well. If you don't have a mandolin slicer at home you can slice the bell pepper very thin by hand. 

2. Blend all dressing ingredients well, except for the sesame seeds. 

3. Add sesame seed to dressing and mix in to the rest of the salad. 

4. Optional: Garnish with extra sesame seeds and cilantro

5. Mix all ingredients well, and store in the fridge for up to 2 days. 

Yellow Garden

This content is sponsored by Monrovia, all opinions, and experiences are my own. Thanks for supporting TFS. 

Every time I'm on Pinterest (which is always) all I think is how I want plants everywhere in my house. I, my friends, also have commitment issues. So when it comes to outdoor gardening the wisest choice I could make for the time being was container gardening. I got the chance to work with Monrovia again for their #ColorDoesIt campaign and for some reason in the past week or so, I've been really interested in yellow. I'm generally more of a green and earth tones kind of person, but yellow has got my attention right now. 

The three plants I picked are all flowering plants, one is that Asiatic Lily, its the bright yellow one that you can't miss. The tall one is called a Mango Popsicle, which will bloom yellow in summer and fall. The leafy tree type one will someday grow to be 15-20' and is called Yellow Lady Banks Rose, which has little clusters of yellow roses that I can't wait to share as decoration in other posts. 

So, really building this little garden was pretty simple, all I did was repot some of the plants with soil I got from Lowe's the first time I went to pick out my plants. I took so long on the first post picking out plants that I decided to break it up into two trips. Either way works, but shopping was definitely easier once I knew what I wanted. You can also check out the website to see what you're interested in. From there your only job really is deciding what goes together and of course where everything will go, which is easy because they're totally portable when they're in containers like this. 

Hopefully you can draw some low commitment inspiration from this post and make sure to plan ahead if you're the kind (like me) that can never quite decide. 

Agave Oatmeal Moisturizing Face Mask

This mask might look a little more like breakfast than a face mask. Funny thing, it tastes a little like breakfast, too. It only has two ingredients, agave nectar and oatmeal. Oatmeal is one of my favorite skin care concoctions, it's moisturizing, calming, most people have it on hand, and its oil free, which is important to people who have dry skin that is also prone to acne. So, like most of my homemade beauty products, there's one isolated key ingredient in a food that makes its efficacy measurable. (I've been watching a little too much Bill Nye Saves the World.) That ingredient in oatmeal is, beta-glucan

"Beta-glucan has the unique properties of being able to form a fine film on your skin as well as being able to penetrate deep into the skin. Thus it provides a protective layer while also providing much needed deep moisturizing to your skin. It also enhances wound healing and shallow abrasions, and naturally stimulates collagen deposition and activation of immune cells within the skin." Poppy Soap, Co. Blog 

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All of this to say, oatmeal is good for your skin, can encourage healing, and much like natural oils leaves a protective barrier on skin, making it less sensitive to environmental factors. 

Agave nectar's benefits are similar to those of honey being that it is a humectant, which means it seals in moisture, and has light exfoliating properties. This means, that it helps skin retain moisture while also helping to remove dead skin cells, without scrubbing. If you don't have any agave nectar on hand, you can always sub honey. 


  • 2 Tablespoons of oat flour or pulse a little bit of oatmeal in the blender 
  • 2 Tablespoons of Agave Nectar


  • Mix both ingredients together.
  • Apply generously to clean skin with fingertips to face and neck. 
  • Leave on for 20-30 minutes, rinse with water and scrub gently for added exfoliating benefits. 

Flower Love

This post is basically made up of all of the flower pictures that didn't make it into the Monrovia post, earlier this week. I conveniently remembered my camera, but forgot the memory card, this happens more than I care to admit, but I had my phone, so not all is lost. I rarely take pictures on my phone, I'm definitely more of a lug around a giant camera kind of a girl. But here is my ode to spring via my handy iPhone.