30 October 2016

Vegan Pumpkin Seed Energy Bar

Vegan Pumpkin Seed Energy Bar // 76sunflowers

It was the morning that parents of young children dread but I managed to embrace the clock change and made the most of my extra hour this morning. I woke at 6:30 and decided to hop to it and soon the smell of ginger and cinnamon roasted pumpkin seeds was wafting through the house - although the children didn't appreciate it as they were taking part in one major Sunday morning sleep in.
Vegan Pumpkin Seed Energy Bar // 76sunflowers
Every year, following our annual pumpkin carving day, I clean, dry out and roast the seeds from the aforementioned large orange vegetable ready for my daughter and I to nibble on over the following days. Today though I decided to use some of the seeds in some baking and having the usual over ripe banana situation going on decided to make some vegan energy bars loosely based on my go to flapjack recipe, but healthier and vegan friendly.

125g Vitalite
150g soft brown sugar
75g golden syrup
zest of a lemon
1 banana
200g porridge oats
100g pumpkin seeds - I used a mix of my own roasted seeds and the traditional shop bought ones

Line a baking tin with baking paper - my tin measured approx. 19x29cm.
Pre-heat the oven to 160c.
In a saucepan melt the Vitalite, sugar and golden syrup.
Once all melted give it a good stir then add the lemon zest, mashed up banana, porridge oats and pumpkin seeds and stir into the mix.
Spread the mixture into the baking tin and bake for 25-30 minutes.
Vegan Pumpkin Seed Energy Bar // 76sunflowers
Once cooled I enjoyed a slice with a cup of cinnamon tea and a handful of extra pumpkin seeds before tacking the garden for it's annual Autumn makeover.

Enjoy and Happy Halloween!

x x x

29 October 2016

Project 366 2016 #43

Half term break arrived for week 43 of Project 2016 and it was time for a change of scenery!

Project 366 2016 #43 day 297 - Sweet peas // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 #43 day 298 - Crackington Haven // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 #43 day 299 - Cotehele Mill // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 #43 day 300 - Bude to Widemouth Bay coastal path // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 #43 day 301 - Dartmoor // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 #43 day 302 - Jamaican Ginger Cake // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 #43 day 303 - Snail // 76sunflowers

Day 297
We headed off on our short break today but not before stopping off before leaving Wiltshire at the husband's office. As I sat and waited for him I noticed some beautiful sweet peas still going strong.
Day 298
We woke up in Cornwall today and headed out to the coast to get our fix of sea air. Crackington Haven was the second beach of the day after stopping off at Widemouth Bay and popping into the inland town of Launceston for a book haul at the local charity shops.
Day 299
Today we headed inland again to the lovely Cardinham Woods followed by Cotehele. Here we explored the waterside and mill sampling some freshly baked ginger cake using the ground flour from the mill.
Day 300
Back to the coast today. This morning I ran from our caravan outside of Bude, through the town and along the coastal path to Widemouth Bay - and back to Bude again to meet the gang. It was a lovely 7 miles with the toughest part being the uphill stretches of off-road terrain along the cliff tops. It set me up perfectly for the day and a pasty was well deserved!
Day 301
Time to wave goodbye to Cornwall today but instead of heading straight for home we stopped off in Devon for a wander around Tavistock then headed across to Princetown for a rather bleak walk across Dartmoor.
Day 302
Dentist day today followed by a productive day in the house including baking a Jamaican Ginger Cake - which seemed to be a bit heavy on the rum!
Day 303
Saturday and run day. A decent 6 miles where, on my cool down at the end, a snail meandered across my path.

x x x

22 October 2016

Project 366 2016 #42

Week 42 of Project 366 2016 and we caught up with family and looked forward to getting away for a while.

Project 366 2016 day 290 - Lacock Abbey // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 291 - Morning 8 mile run // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 292 - Lacock 8 mile run // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 293 - Bedtime reading // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 294 - Traffic jam sunset // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 295 - The Simple Things // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 296 - Running sky // 76sunflowers

Day 290
A beautiful walk around Lacock again but this time with my brother and his family who we haven't seen for two years!
Day 291
Headed out for a long run this morning and got up to 8 miles. This included a lovely mile off road where looking back it looked like the ocean in the distance,
Day 292
Another 8 miler today - this time with a friend for company. We ran from Lacock and just talked and talked. It was so lovely to have company and the time just flew by.
Day 293
My brother and family popped in for fish and chips tonight then it was an early night with some very easy reading.
Day 294
I am facing constant traffic issues getting to and from work lately but tonight I sat and tried to chill in the queue of cars as the sun went down. It's out of my control so I try and stay calm.
Day 295
Friday night. End of the first school term. So I celebrate with a my favourite Simple Things magazine in bed.
Day 296
A lazy Saturday with a walk to town to carry out some chores. I needed to get a run in and managed my fastest 4 miles in quite some time underneath a lovely blue sky.

x x x

15 October 2016

Project 366 2016 #41

A week of Autumn sunshine for week 41 of Project 366 2016 gave lots of opportunities for walks and runs.

Project 366 2016 day 283 - Lacock walk // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 284 - Blue skies mornng run // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 285 - Foggy mornng run // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 286 - Banana bread // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 287 - Bedtime reading // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 288 - Pinterest in bed // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 289 - Autumn leaves // 76sunflowers

Day 283
A lovely Sunday walk around Lacock where we foraged for sloes, bought cooking apples from a roadside stall and dreamed about cottages.
Day 284
Gorgeous blue skies for my Monday morning 5 mile run.
Day 285
Pushed myself out again today for another 5 miles. The fog was hanging around across the fields in front of one of my favourite cottages in a nearby village.
Day 286
Working Wednesday and a nice surprise when I got home with freshly baked banana bread  fresh out of the oven - well done husband! I also signed up for a half marathon next month so this was consumed under the guise of fuel food.
Day 287
Tired Thursday and a much needed yoga session followed by a little bit of reading in bed - I fell asleep pretty much straight after I snapped my only photo of the day.
Day 288
The dark evenings are impacting my daily photo opportunities - tonight it was a late one again with a bit of Pinterest pinning action.
Day 289
A little lie in then I dragged myself out for my first 10k run in quite a while. It was worthwhile and Strava was happy; second fastest 10k and fastest personal time on a segment. I finished up with some stretching in the garden underneath the beautiful autumn leaves.


10 October 2016

Happy Autumn {Musing on a Monday}

So last month the big four zero came and went and life carried on as normal. I didn't wake up with any obvious additions to the grey roots or extra lines on my face - that I noticed. In fact I woke up happy with no hangover from the night before and with a renewed energy ready to take on Autumn and the rest of the year. Indeed I was happy at 40.
Happy Autumn {Musing on a Monday} // 76sunflowers
The last few weeks has seen a resurgence for my love of running; Summer saw the number of days with me heading out of the door with my runners on becoming fewer and fewer but the crisp sunny Autumn mornings of late have spurred me on to head out and power up the running legs. I am currently running just for me, with no races signed up for I feel I don't have any pressure. Now I could look at that scenario either way; I continue to run just for me relaxed in the knowledge there is no mileage to reach every week, no pace to up, no race to run OR I can see it as I have no goal - and sometimes I need that goal. In the run up to my 40th I set myself some goals with my 40 things before 40 - not all were reached but the setting of them made me get up and do more.
This morning's post, although eliminating quite a big future running goal, has in fact inspired me to continue to get back on with my running. This magazine came through the letter box and I opened it with mixed emotions...
Happy Autumn {Musing on a Monday} // 76sunflowers
Some runners had already turned to social media with the enjoyment of receiving a 'Yes' and sadness, and relief, at receiving, like me, a 'No'. Sadly, some were angry at not being chosen to run - although when over 250,000 runners apply for 50,000 places the odds are against you. The anger made me sad; the London Marathon is ultimately just another marathon - yes it's one of the World's biggest but there are plenty of other unjust things in this world that the effort of such anger could be channelled towards. I try not to get angry, as much, anymore. I try to see the bigger picture, take a step back, take a deep breath. That's not to say anger is not part of my emotions anymore - it is, but one that needs to be contained.
Whilst running today I had time to think of what this month, and Autumn, has to come; importantly I need to apply for my girl's Secondary School place - time to get my head out of the sand on that one. This has been an emotional time trying to decide which school to put first on the application form whilst making my girl realise, however much she asks, I am not in a position to home-school her. My own emotions have gone a bit haywire on this too - my baby girl is almost at Secondary School and those apron strings will be loosened just a little bit more. She loves her current role of big sister walking the boy out of school down the road to the nearby bus stop to meet me - I'm not quite ready to let them walk the whole way home yet mainly due to the sheer volume, and speed, that vehicles drive down the main road. I still find it strange that I was walking home by myself from Year 1 onwards but the roads were quieter - although I'm sure there were still other risks just as high as they are today. But that day will soon come when they leave the house without me and return without me.
Next month sees me taking on the student role; I'm going to be learning something new with a couple of weekend courses coming up that will hopefully take me on a new exciting road in my life spreading some calmness and relaxation and calmness on the way. Before then I will have a bit of reading to do.
Yoga for Children // 76sunflowers

x x x

8 October 2016

Project 366 2016 #40

Week 40 of Project 366 for 2016 has seen me find my running feet again and chasing some sunshine!

Project 366 2016 day 276 - Dyrham Park deer // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 277 - Sunny morning run // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 278 - Pink morning sky // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 279 - The Simple Things magazine // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 280 - Peacock yoga leggings // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 281 - Gin & Tonic & popcorn // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 282 - Afternoon run // 76sunflowers

Day 276
It was a beautiful sunny Autumn day today so we headed to work with the husband with plans to go to Tyntesfield afterwards. The car park was full and parking was a little bit precarious on the road outside so we headed out to the motorway for a circular route home taking in the joys of the deer at Dyrham Park instead.
Day 277
The sunshine continued today and I got my runners on again for a 4 mile run round the local villages - stopping en route to say hello to the cows. I had planned to go a bit further but my outer knee started to niggle just after 3 miles and experience has taught to me to pull up sooner rather than later in these circumstances.
Day 278
I woke up this morning to a lovely warm pink hue in my bedroom so hung out of my window to capture the gorgeous morning sky. Later that evening I tested the knee on a 5k run to the local village and back and was pleased to say that all was fine.
Day 279
Wednesday so back to work so early to bed - tonight with the latest Simple Things magazine.
Day 280
It was a peacock leggings and fluffy sock kind of evening to walk to yoga and back tonight - the Winter coat and Doc Martens were put on too due to a downward shift in temperature.
Day 281
A quiet Friday evening with the children tonight to watch the Minions DVD - a rare Gin and Tonic and popcorn were my reward.
Day 282
A Saturday of errands and housework today followed by a late afternoon run - I managed 4.5 faster miles and no knee niggles so there's a bottle of Prosecco in the fridge now to celebrate!

x x x

1 October 2016

Project 366 2016 #39

It was another positive week with a nice mix of home and work. Everyone is settled in at the latter but I can't believe it's October already?!

Project 366 2016 day 269 - Favourite childhood book // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 270 - Homemade falafels // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 271 - Pizza restaurant // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 272 - Baking night // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 273 - Conkers and sunflower heads // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 274 - Morning sky // 76sunflowers
Project 366 2016 day 275 - Afternoon yoga // 76sunflowers

Day 269
Tonight I started reading my favourite childhood book with my boy having realised we haven't read together for a long time - bad mother. Do you know the book?!
Day 270
Having bought mediocre falafels from the supermarket I finally got around to making my own. I looked through some recipes and made up my own combination for sweet potato falafels - and they were pretty good!
Day 271
I took a walk around a local town with the husband today and loved the signage for this pizza restaurant.
Day 272
Baking night ahead of cake day on Friday.
Day 273
Conkers and dead sunflower heads for some fine motor exploration at work - they loved it.
Day 274
A beautiful morning sky again whilst sat at the traffic lights on my morning commute.
Day 275
A well balanced Saturday with morning chores, afternoon yoga, film with my babies and an evening of pie and prosecco - Autumn is pie season!

x x x
© 76 sunflowers

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