An Incredible Easter Weekend

This weekend flew by way too fast. No, wayyyyyyyy too fast.

We had two Easter celebrations: Saturday with Dana’s family and Sunday with my family. We ate very well all weekend enjoyed so much great company and lots of laughs.


I brought this fabulous pear salad that turned out just as good this time as it did last time I made it.

pear salad

We had ham, cheesy vegetables, roasted potatoes…

Easter ham and cheesy vegetables



And refreshing key lime pie. Everything was excellent!


key lime pie


Then we cozied ourselves on the couch and all hung out together as it rained outside.


Easter celebration #1 = success.


On Sunday we headed to church with my family. I love Easter service. It is so bright and uplifting!

dana and melanie

Then we headed back to mom and dad’s for Easter goodies….

Easter basket

And another absolutely amazing meal: ham, asparagus with cheese, cheesy potatoes, deviled eggs, pickles, olives, and fruit salad.

Easter 2014

And for dessert I made homemade lemon bars with ZERO refined sugar (minus the frozen yogurt alongside the bar).

I made the crust from this recipe:  crust

The gooey lemon bar part from this recipe: bar

lemon bars


They turned out so delicious! I didn’t miss the white sugar AT ALL!

We spent quite a bit of time outside yesterday because it was in the 70’s! It felt amazing to have the sun on my skin. Yay for spring!

Easter celebration #2 = success.

It was quite the weekend. I slept for a solid 10 hours last night. All of that eating and sitting around sure does wear a girl out. 😉 I hope you all had a great weekend full of relaxation, celebration, and family and friends.

Happy Easter!


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No Bake Key Lime Pie

In the mood for a light and refreshing dessert? Then you’ve come to the right place! I jump on the opportunity to bring desserts to holiday functions and get togethers, so of course I volunteered to bring something sweet to our Easter celebration on Sunday. It was actually my mom’s idea to go the key lime route, and then I took off with it. Great idea as always madre!

I found a recipe for Key Lime Pie from and used her recipe for my inspiration. Here it goes!

Lightly coat one pie dish with butter; set aside. In a food processor, mix together dates, raisins, and almonds to make the crust. Use hands to press the crust mixture into the pan. It will cover the bottom of the pan completely. Place the crust in fridge. Clean out the food processor.

Easter 2013

In a small saucepan, heat coconut milk over low-medium heat until hot; do not let it boil. Meanwhile combine lime juice, honey, and avocado in a clean food processor and mix well. Then pour juice mixture into glass bowl. Add gelatin to bowl and whisk until incorporated. Whisk heated coconut milk in with the gelatin mixture until mixed thoroughly. Pour into pie crust and place in fridge for at least 8 hours.

Easter 2013

For the cream cheese frosting: use a hand or stand mixer to whip together cream cheese (I used homemade but you can use your favorite), honey, vanilla, and a little coconut milk. After the pie has completely set, carefully spread the cream cheese frosting over the pie.

Place in freezer for 45 minutes before serving to help with slicing.

Easter 2013 Easter 2013

Slice carefully and enjoy!

Easter 2013

Note: I didn’t freeze the pie before cutting into it hence the reason it looks like a messy piece of pie, but placing it in the freezer for a short while should help it to set a little further and will hopefully cut easier!

No Bake Key Lime Pie (Gluten-Free, No Refined White Sugar)
  • Crust:
  • ⅞ cup dates
  • ⅛ cup raisins
  • ½ cup almonds
  • Lime Filling:
  • 1 can coconut milk --- ***reserve 2 Tbsp for topping
  • ½ cup honey
  • ¾ cup fresh squeezed lime juice
  • 1½ small avocado or 1 large
  • 1 envelope of plain gelatin
  • Cream Cheese Topping:
  • ¾ cup cream cheese
  • 1-2 Tbsp honey (to taste preference)
  • 1 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • 2 Tbsp. coconut milk
  1. Lightly coat one pie dish with butter; set aside.
  2. In food processor, mix together crust ingredient until it resembles coarse sand. Use hands to press the crust mixture into the pan. It will cover the bottom of the pan completely. Place in fridge. Clean food processor.
  3. In a small saucepan, heat coconut milk over low-medium heat until hot, but do not let it boil.
  4. Meanwhile combine lime juice, honey, and avocado in food processor and mix well. Then pour juice mixture into glass bowl.
  5. Add gelatin to bowl and whisk until incorporated.
  6. Whisk heated coconut milk in with the gelatin mixture until mixed thoroughly. Pour into pie crust and place in fridge for at least 8 hours.
  7. For cream cheese frosting: use hand or stand mixer to whip together all ingredients. After pie has set, carefully spread cream cheese frosting over pie.
  8. Place in freezer for 45 minutes before serving.



April Fitness Challenge

At the gym yesterday, I tested my strength to see just how far away I am from doing one unassisted chin-up, which is my April goal. I was able to do one chin-up with 75 lbs of assistance from the machine. I have a LONG ways to go, but I truly think I will be able to reach my goal! You have to start somewhere, right?!

Happy Tuesday my friends!

Question: Have you made any nummy desserts lately?! Please share!

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A Lovely Easter & April Fitness Challenge

Is anyone else recovering from a slight sugar shock from yesterday? Yes, I had some sugar yesterday. I don’t regret it and I absolutely enjoyed it, for ONE day. Now that Monday is here, the candy will hide out until next weekend. At least that’s the plan.

I do not believe in depriving yourself of the foods you love, it is all about MODERATION, but since I am in the last stages of my gut healing, I’m trying to stay clear for now.

Our Easter celebration yesterday was absolutely lovely. My parents, my brother Kevin,  Dana and I all went to 11:00 church service and I loved everything about the service; the music, the atmosphere of all of the happy people, being there with my family, the message, everything.

Easter 2013

After church we headed home. The Easter bunny did a great job of filling Dana and my basket with mostly healthy things since she knows we are watching our sugar intake. 😉

Easter 2013

It was 12:30 at this point and we were all pretty ravished, but mom had plantain chips and salsa, sweet potato chips and hummus, and shrimp all ready for us to munch on. I really enjoyed the plantain chips.

Once 2:30 pm rolled around, dinner was served. I brought a fruit salad which I found on Pinterest. I wish I could take credit because this bowl was beautiful. It was simply fresh strawberries, blueberries, and green grapes which I drizzled with a honey and lime homemade mixture. I had two bowls of this sweet goodness!

Easter 2013

The rest of the delicious fare….deviled eggs, which I have officially decided I need to eat more than once a year because they are so tasty and I love them so much.

Easter 2013

Cheesy potatoes….I actually resisted these this year except for one bite to taste! I could have had some but I’m trying to let my body continue to heal and didn’t want to push it with the richness of this dish.

Easter 2013

I loaded up on the asparagus! The ham tasted awfully good too and I’m not always the biggest ham fan. NUM.


Easter 2013


After dinner, both mom and I were a little antsy, so we went for a quick walk around the neighborhood. It was windy and a little cold but it sure felt good to get the legs moving.

When we returned, I plated the dessert. I made a gluten-free, no refined sugar, Key Lime Pie. It may not be picture perfect, but it definitely tasted GREAT! I will be posting the recipe this week so stay tuned!


Easter 2013

Both Easter #1 and Easter #2 were huge successes. I have so much love for my family and I so enjoy spending time with them! I love the holidays!

So, back to that sugar real quick. Up until this point in the day I hadn’t had any processed refined sugar, but when we got home last night, I really wanted some Easter candy from my basket. I had a few piece of licorice and some dark chocolate M & M’s. They tasted very good. I was very excited to have this special treat, but like I said, now that Easter is over, the candy will go away for the week and I will be back to limiting my sugars throughout the week. Next weekend, I might dabble into a piece or two, but we’ll see. I really savored those sweets last night, though. Mmm mmm. I can’t lie and say I didn’t like them, but again I remind you all of my favorite word: Moderation.


April Fitness Challenge

I’m hesitant to make this public and hold myself accountable for this, BUT, I have a fitness goal that I have been wanting to attain since I can’t remember when and it’s about time I gave it a go.

This month, I am challenging myself to do at least ONE UNASSISTED CHIN-UP. 

There, I said it. It’s out there and it’s published. It’s time to start making these dreams come to life!

Q: Any words of wisdom/tips/advice for me?

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Easter Celebration #1

I am really enjoying myself this relaxing Sunday. I’m going to keep this short and sweet because I want to continue this day of relaxation, but I wanted to give you a quick update from last night.

We had plans over at Dana’s parent’s house to celebrate belated birthdays for both Dana and his mom, Sue, and also to celebrate Easter a little early.

As always, there was LOTS of delicious food! We started with some appetizers: veggies, almond crackers, and an avocado/edamame/pesto dip which was excellent!

veggie app

For our main course we had a chicken, shrimp, and artichoke sauté alongside tabouli and homemade almond biscuits (I brought the biscuits). Holy moly everything was so good!

chicken shrimp artichoke chicken shrimp artichoke easter 2013

Next up, dessert of course. We were celebrating two birthdays AND Easter afterall. Sue picked up a cake from Wuolett’s Bakery in Edina. To those of you who have never experienced this cake, let me tell you, it is fantastic!

birthday cake


The one she bought was called Princess Torte and it was raspberry and Bavarian cream layered with genoise (egg-rich golden cake) and wrapped in pastel almond marzipan.


dana and sue birthday

It was very refreshing and light tasting.

birthday cake

It was such a nice evening and now we can say Dana’s birthday celebrations are officially over and Easter celebration #1 was a success!

I hope you are all enjoying your Sunday. Catch up with you later!


Continue Reading Easter Celebration #1