rebranding the granola diaries

the time has come to re-brand the granola diaries.

what started off as a simple blog about my daily life hasn’t really evolved past that; it has always been a hobby, something that i would go to whenever i had a thought i wanted to share.  and while the readership has grown, i find myself feeling uninspired with what i am sharing.

i hope this change to be something that grows organically into something much bigger than just a blog.  i have big plans for this space and i’m excited to get started.

so in the meantime, while i work on the re-brand, i will be taking a short break from the blog.

onward and upward!

see you soon!

-m

homemade parmesan chicken fingers

homemade parmesan chicken fingers

at our house, we love chicken fingers but the ones from the store always leave us wanting more flavour and actual chicken.

so in my attempt to cater to hungry bellies, i came up with our own version of chicken fingers and boy oh boy, i have to say these are a huge hit with us now!

homemade parmesan chicken fingers

ingredients

3 chicken breasts
grated parmesan cheese such as kraft’s grated parmesan cheese
equal parts rice flour such as bob’s red mill rice flour
equal parts potato startch such as bob’s red mill potato starch
montreal chicken spice such as clubhouse la grille
black pepper
sea salt
paprika
all purpose seasoning such as vegeta
3 eggs

  1. warm up your deep frier; ours uses grapeseed oil which a healthier choice to use and doesn’t alter the flavour of the food nor does it leave them with a greasy texture
  2. cut up your chicken breasts into either strips or random sizes (this is what we do!)
  3. in a bowl, whisk the eggs until they’re all combined
  4. in another bowl, mix all the dry ingredients
  5. dip your chicken, a few pieces at a time, into the egg mixture and then transfer the chicken to the dry ingredient mixture; set aside on another plate.  continue until all your chicken is covered up in the egg / dry ingredient mixture
  6. put the chicken fingers into your deep frier; fry for approx. 7 minutes, checking to see if the chicken fingers are cooked through (should be white with no pink) – chicken fingers should be a lovely golden brown when they’re ready!
  7. serve immediately! enjoy!!

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the Mr. topped his with a sweet chilli sauce and i dipped mine into ranch dressing; the Monkey had hers plain and devoured a huge plateful of these!

seriously good eatin’ was had by all!

more recipes on the blog can be found here

paleo goodness

since i have some “time on my hands”, i figured i’d put the effort into actually cooking suppers.  while i was at work, we always got home so late that spending an hour on cooking supper meant we were eating after 8pm.

not fun.

so, while i’m on a bit of a hiatus from “real world work” and essentially working from home on my art, i’ve been on a hunt for delicious recipes.

this is what i found and made last night, and let me tell you, it was freakin’ fantastic!!

Deconstructed Beef Paleo Burritos


i pretty much had everything on hand already, except for the avocado and sweet potato, but those were cheap buys.  the only variation i made from the recipe is that i added the chopped avocado straight into the salad instead of having it on the side.

make this recipe.  you won’t be disappointed!

inspiration : painter scott naismith

i was perusing pinterest earlier today, looking for who-knows-what, and all of a sudden i noticed an abstract oil painting while i was scrolling.  it was literally love at first sight:

30 x 30cm Urban Sky Study 1

the painting is by scottish painter scott naismist and once i read his artist statement, i became even more excited:

After 10 years of painting the Scottish landscape, my recent work now becomes more involved with cloudcover and its effect on light and colour through both its translucent and opaque properties. Clouds are visible masses of water droplets or frozen ice crystals suspended in the atmosphere . They have the ability to refract and reflect, creating an ever changing perception of light which inspires my use of colour.

I am constantly referring to the  paradox of a cloud’s perceived weight and its fragility and the relationship between the cool and warm colours created by it. I have become increasingly interested in catching the moment when heavy overcast clears to reveal clear blue sky, a cool colour that complements the warmth it brings. While the most obvious manifestation of light refraction at this time would occur in the form of a rainbow, I will be concerned with accentuating the infinite, more subtle effects.

personally, i have noticed my large scale abstract paintings have taken me in a similar area of interest; i get lost in painting space and cloud scenes and i love to play with different colours and textures to make something striking.

looking over scott’s work, i am immediately inspired and in desperate need of having a paint brush in my hand.  his use of colours and splotches is worthy of serious study in technique (and i am nerding out over how stunning that blue / pink / yellow look together):

Consonance & Dissonance 90 x 90cm

 

Vermillion Cumulus 30 x 60cm

 

Diminuendo Sky Study 2 30cm

 

Harris Warm Sky Study 30cm

scott also has a youtube channel where he shows time lapse videos of him painting along with commentary.  take a look here (link will open in new tab).

who have you been inspired by as of late?

 

 

The Granola Diaries on Etsy!

good morning!

i have decided to open up an etsy store to sell some of my handmade goods!

i’m a creative sort and my small house is slowly filling up with my creations, so i thought it best to share them with the world!

you’ll find bohemian inspired pieces for you and your home!

i’m terrible at self-promotion so this is my little step out of my comfort zone so bear with me as i work out my own kinks when it comes to this journey.

in the mean time, it would be rad and make me oh so happy if you could check out my store: The Granola Diaries on Etsy

have a beautiful monday!

28Sep2014_4291 (YELLOW QUARTZ)
28Sep2014_4297 (WOODEN CIRCLE)
28Sep2014_4335 (PURPLE)

going to the sun

over the labour day long weekend, myself, the Mr, and 2 of our friends set out on a motorcycle road trip down through south western alberta into montana and then back up through south eastern british columbia.  the trip was just shy of 950kms roundtrip and took us just under 3 full days with plenty of rest stops along the way, we really were in no hurry which is a lovely way to travel.

i did the trip on my drz400 supermoto (yes i was supa comfy!) and the Mr took his vstrom 650DL, loaded with most of our gear.

we left bright and early on saturday morning and headed south along the cowboy trail towards the us-can border.  never having been through waterton national park, the scenery seriously knocked my socks off.  we’ll have to do more in depth exploring there as i didn’t really get a chance to get my camera out and take proper photographs.  i did snap a few photos during a rest stop, here’s one of them:

waterton national park, alberta, canada, vscocam

once we got through the border crossing, we made our way to st. mary and the start of the going-to-the-sun highway that winds its way through glacier national park in montana.  if  you’ve ever wanted to take that trip, i highly recommend it!  its seriously a great ride on the bike and once you make it passed logan’s pass, thats where (in my opinion) the road gets even more stunning.  anywho, we ended up doing some primitive camping north of st. mary because all of the campgrounds inside the park where full but honestly, i think we ended up on the winning side of that equation.  we camped at a deserted campground that included a fantastic fireplace for super cheap – it cost us $25USD for 4 people to be right on the lake.  can’t beat that!!

camping, montana

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sunset, lake, montana, clouds, sun, lake, rocks

in the morning on day 2, we were treated to a stunning sunrise.  i wish i could show you guys all the photos i took of the changing conditions but then we’d be here for a while!  here’s my favourite shot:

31Aug2014_3797, sunrise, pink, purple, lake, mountains, montana

after a hearty breakfast, we got back onto the road and headed back to the park.  the park warden told us when we went to the gate on day 1 to show up early; we started on the road at about 0830 and she was right.  for the first part, we were mostly alone but the crowds very quickly gathered and it made for some slow spots.  nonetheless, this gave us plenty of time to enjoy the road and the scenery.  logan’s pass was a total trip! it was cold and the clouds would set it, then 30 seconds later they would part and you’d be treated to some amazing views of the valley below.  simply breathtaking!  here’s a few snaps i caught on my iphone along the way, on the west side of the pass heading towards west glacier:

glacier national park, montana

glacier (august 2014) VSCO 2(above) this was my favourite part of the trip, the road into west glacier is stunning!

we had lunch in west glacier (while it rained) and headed back up into canada through eureka.  again, we had no issues at the border and made it into canada in a span of 10 minutes for 3 bikes to get through.  once in british columbia, we rode along hwy93 towards lake koocanusa and made camp overlooking the lake:

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this has to be one of the few times camping where the nights were incredibly warm and we had no problems sleeping soundly in our tents.  we brought along my 14+ year old two-man kelty tent and like always, it performed fantastically!  if you’re in the market for a great tent that is easy to setup, i highly recommend kelty!  well worth the money for sure.

day 3 saw us parting ways; our 2 friends had to be in the city early to pick up their kiddo while the mr and myself took the long scenic route home along forestry trunk road.  large parts of that road were destroyed last summer when we experienced the 100-year flood and we had heard mixed reports of whether or not the road was open all the way.  it turned out that it was, although it was a bit sketchy in some parts just due to all the damage caused.  we tried to extend our trip as long as we could, taking all the back roads we could think of before actually heading home.

3 days on the bike passed by in the blink of an eye and the trip was amazing! we’re already planning our next adventure before “winter” officially starts here in alberta…

hope you all had a great long weekend as well!!

take care!

somewhere, alberta

on saturday we decided to pack up the kidlets (human and dog alike) and go for a little adventure.  the day started off a little warm, but very quickly turned cloudy with what felt like imminent rain.  luckily for us (or unluckily, depending on which way you look at it), the rain held off.  nothing a warm sweater and a toque couldn’t save!

mountain, foothills, clouds, foggy, green, vscowe drove for about 45 mins on the highway and then headed into the foothills.  we followed along one of the most beautiful roads high up into the hills and once there, stopped for a bit to stretch our legs and enjoy having our heads in the clouds!  totally surreal moment.

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rock, moss, nature, clouds, landcape, fog

from there, we headed through the pass and into a little valley on the other side.  we continued driving for a little longer, trying to find the perfect spot to stop; its all wilderness camping there, with makeshift spots people stop at to spend a night or a week.  sometimes they’re pretty respectful, but there are those few who turn it all into their own little piece of shit (rather frustrating for us nature-loving-hipies).  the overwhelming noise and “music” (nothing but fuzzed out bass) turned us away from 2 beautiful sites which was very disappointing.

23Aug2014_3654as it were, third times a charm, and we found a secluded little spot overlooking the river soon enough.  first priority – start a campfire.

river, valley, rocks, water, landscape, nature

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23Aug2014_3698cookin’ food on the fire – the “campfire mac’n’cheese” was a sorta failure…not as delish as i was led to believe (you LIED internet!).  nonetheless,there is something about food cooked by fire that saved the day regardless.  we had (sort of) mac’n’cheese, cheese buns, piggies in a blanket, and corn on the cob; dessert was  toasted marshmallows of course!

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23Aug2014_3701once it got dusk, we slowly packed up our little worn out party and headed home.

lovely way to spend a day and recharge.

hope you all had a wonderful weekend!