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Very Sincerely,

Robyn Hurst

www.RobynHurst.com

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Growing and Changing….

Hello darling readers, subscribers and non-subscribers all! This may very well be the last post on this site, as Robyn Hurst and Vessels of Clay Yoga have MOVED! Sure enough, you can check out all future posts at www.RobynHurst.com

Previous Blog posts have been imported and can be found there as well…just look under the “Blog” tab. The new site will give you access to Class schedules/rates, Calendar events, Products/companies I support, Blogs to Inspire, and more!
Come on over! Can’t wait to see you there!

(And if you are a subscriber, please go on over and subscribe; I’ve got the button all ready for ya! Choose one of the many web feed options or click on the e-mail tab to have it sent to your inbox!)

www.RobynHurst.com

Smorgasbord

Definition of SMORGASBORD

1
: a luncheon or supper buffet offering a variety of foods and dishes (as hors d’oeuvres, hot and cold meats, smoked and pickled fish, cheeses, salads, and relishes)
2
: an often large heterogeneous mixture : mélange
(Thank you, Merriam-Webster online…)
Also:

Examples of SMORGASBORD

  1. <every day the director has to first deal with a smorgasbord of problems before he can begin filming>

Origin of SMORGASBORD

Swedish smörgåsbord, from smörgås open sandwich + bordtable

First Known Use: 1879
(again, credit here shall go to Merriam-Webster, here:
Why do I start with this crazy word of Scandinavian origin?  Well, growing up, when we had a lot of leftovers to eat, my Mom would tell us that it was Smorgasbord night…meaning time to eat all the leftovers in whatever conglomeration they come.  Sidenote:  it was my Dad’s favorite meal.  He loved eating leftovers.  When they were heated and put in front of him.  Ahem (Is this a male thing?  Because honestly, my sweetie will also be glad to eat leftovers once they are heated and on a plate smelling delicious, but in the fridge in a container, they do nothing for him.  Funny. Random.  Moving on.)
Welcome to your Smorgasbord blog!  I just thought I’d throw out a few things that made me smile this week.  That’s all. =-)
One:  If you follow my blog, you know that we did not have a totally traditional Thanksgiving, so we made the little bits of a traditional Thanksgiving meal throughout the season…and early this week, I just finished the homemade and healthy Hallelujah Acres version of Green Bean Casserole.  It was YUM.  What it leaves out is the Cream of Mushroom soup, but you would never know it! There are mushrooms in it for sure, and yes, even the French’s fried onions, as they have minimal ingredients.  Check out this much healthier version of an old fave on their site:
Two:  I have been reading “Sweet Deception” by Dr. Joseph Mercola and Dr. Kendra Degen Pearsall for awhile now; it is a non-fiction book that mainly concerns the origins and problems of artificial sweeteners such as aspartame, saccharin, nutrasweet, splenda, etc, but it also delves into issues of the FDA and Big Pharma.  It has taken me awhile to read, because admittedly, it’s a lot of information and does not always have me on the edge of my seat.  I am still really glad  that I read it, and I highly recommend it!  Last night, though, one quote from the book totally spoke to me, and I was not expecting it:
“My conscience is formed by the voice of Christ speaking internally to me.  That’s what the conscience is:  it’s the voice of God speaking to each and every one of us about what’s right and what’s wrong.  I knew what was right.  If I walked away from that, nobody else would have to do anything.  I’d be beating myself up because my conscience would condemn me.  So, yes, faith plays a part in everything that I do.  It’s not saying I’m a saint, because I’m not.  But I can’t separate who I am from my religious faith.  It’s all part of the same person.”
Dr. David Graham, the “whistle-blowing FDA physician who testified before the Senate, in the wake of the Vioxx catastrophe, about the critical flaws in the FDA” on whether or not his faith had to do with his decision to testify.
I ask you, does that speak to you, too?
Three:  Raw Veggie Cereal is my new favorite cold cereal.  I love cold cereal.  I do.  And let’s just say that even the healthiest ones out there are still super-processed, unless you know how to make Buckwheat Krispies, which I do, but they have a distinct flavor that I don’t really want to have every day.  (I also love hot cereals, but that is not the point right now. snicker snort.)
For me, veggies at breakfast usually come in the form of A) blended into a smoothie–which is not always what I am longing for in the cold winter months, B) used in sweet salad in combo with fruit and nuts, or C) sauteed lightly before adding some egg to the skillet–great in the winter, but I am more of a sweet than savory breakfast kind of girl.  (Frittatas are awesome at lunch and dinner, though!)
I happened upon this link recently and thought, well, that sounds intriguing…a bunch of veggies, some fruit, and some nuts all mixed together making a “raw” cereal?  And I wondered about the taste when I saw that broccoli and cauliflower were among the ingredients…but let me assure you— THIS STUFF IS YUMMY.  I mean, mainstream flavor yummy, not that-chick-drinks-green-smoothies-yummy…you know what I mean.  I would never have guessed by the taste that there were some usually (dare I say it?) pungent veggies in there!  But processed with apples, pecans, and carrots, topped with coconut flakes, almond milk and cinnamon, and this stuff has raw-nutrient-deliciousness-that-tastes-like-cereal all over it!!!  And no sweetener needed!  CRAZY.
So, go try ya’ some…I dare you.  It made about 3 heaping 1 cup servings, I found, and I topped each with 1 Tbsp coconut, a dash of cinnamon and just enough almond milk to make it look like a bowl of cereal.
Ps…the blog site is hosted by Candace Cameron Bure, but the author of that post is Janelle of Comfy in the Kitchen, if anyone else happens to follow those blogs…I found both of them through Darlene Schacht of The Time-Warp Wife blog (see side panel)…all have great blogs to follow!!!  In fact, here is a post from Darlene that I adored this week (it was timely, you know…):
(and ladies, so you know…it’s not tips on how to WIN…it’s tips on how to love…good stuff!!!)
Finally, (Four) I loved this quote from Oswald Chambers:
“Believe God is always the God you  know Him to be when you are nearest to Him.”
So wonderful.  I so needed that.  For when I am nearest to my Lord, I am the girl who twirls around in her backyard with happiness.  I feel safe.  I can talk freely with Him.  I feel approved.  Calm.  Joyous.  Giddy. Yes, all at the same time.  So, no matter how I am actually feeling in a real time moment, I can believe that God is still the same God with whom I feel those glorious emotions.  He is still looking at me the same way.  He is still protecting me the same way.  He is still loving me the same way.   That has not changed.  Whatever my circumstances, I can remember that and hold on to it!  And it certainly gets me through to the next moment…

Me, in St. Louis, Open to His Grace (with Pinocchio, of course!)

I want to end this post with one of my most favorite scriptures.  So fitting no matter what your journey this week or next has been or will be.  Random? Focused? Busy? Slow?  Guess what God says–
“My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”
Exodus 33:14
Hold on to Him, and don’t let go…He will guide you the entire way; He will see you through the journey.  He promised.
Much love to you all,
Robyn
Ps…what spoke to you this week?  What spoke to you from this post?  Feel free to leave a comment below!  (I will be off-the-grid for a little while, so-to-speak, but I will love checking them out when I re-enter techno world!)

Finding center…

I am just going to be completely transparent here.  I have had this blogpost all mapped out in my mind for a day or two, and it was forming several days before that, running around in little sparks  within the lobes of my brain…an inspirational message to coincide with the new year beginning, and including things that I love: Scripture, yoga, healthy food…etc…

…and Life Happens…and maybe we don’t get to the blogpost as quickly as we hope, but at least we get there…but maybe more importantly, in between the time that one has formulated their oh-so-inspirational message and the time that it gets typed, life happens in such a way as to make them think, “who am I to write an inspirational message?”  I am human and flawed.  I make mistakes.  I get into arguments.  I get judgmental.  I have my heart get hurt.  I hurt someone else’s.  These things happen in a normal, human life, even when we have chosen day after day to strive to live a life of freedom and balance and never hurt anyone else or do anything stupid.  It can cause one to think, “is it hypocritical of me to type out this ‘oh-so-inspirational’ message, when I have surely already done or experienced a few less-than-inspiring things today?”

Yes.  And no.

It is why we all need fresh starts.  Why we needed a Savior in the first place.  HIS message never changes.  He tells us in His Word that hope never fails. (Romans 5:5 Amp)  I, for one, am thankful for the reminder and the assurance!

I could receive a thousand and one affirmations and confirmations from God that I am on the right track (and I have), and STILL I can stumble somewhere minute along the way (and I do/did)…

But like I have said and heard many times, He can use my mess to bring a message…and while this particular message was already planned out, isn’t it funny how it has been punctuated by life events?….

20 I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death.  Phillipians 1:20 NIV

Are there any areas of your life that you struggle to yield to Jesus?  It’s ok, you can admit it.  I am  not actually there listening…but He is…and guess what?— He already knows.  It will be a relief to lay it down before Him, I promise.  There is nothing so funny/overwhelming/relieving as working yourself up to tell someone something big only to have them respond that they knew and they are ok with it, or even approve!  (Human life example:  calling home my freshman year of college to tell my parents that I was switching my major from Music Education/Therapy to Music Performance…they saw it coming, with approval, long before I did.)  I promise you, He will approve.  And if it is something you need help with, He will show you the way.
Maybe you are not struggling with anything, though…maybe you are actually just filled with hope about the new things He is doing in your life…AWESOME.  I love that, too.  I am in that place as well…and are you   so excited to see what happens next?!?

Through your faithful prayers and the generous response of the Spirit of Jesus Christ, everything he wants to do in and through me will be done. I can hardly wait to continue on my course. I don’t expect to be embarrassed in the least.    Philippians 1:20 The Message

I also love this…
http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Isaiah+43:19&version=NIV

The thing we have to do in either case listed above (or quite frankly, any case we find ourselves in) is CENTER.  Center ourselves in Him, center ourselves physically.  Stop. Listen. Breathe.  Focus.  Keep to the point.  Keep to the purpose…no distractions…(or at least, take our focus AWAY from them for a time, and as much time as we can!)

We can do that spiritually AND physically.  I believe and know that everything has 2 layers: Spiritual and Physical.  Whether you realize it or not, it is true.  We ourselves are physical beings and spiritual beings.  For Christians, we know the Word is both a guidebook  and the Living Word.

So, I’d like to share a little about Child’s Pose in this post.  Stuff I have known for awhile, but stuff that comes home to me ANYTIME I actually sit in Child’s pose and just breathe.  just sit.  just listen.

Child's pose with arms back...

In the first picture (at the top of the post), you see someone in child’s pose on a bed.  I picked that one because I often do that!  As I begin my devotional time, I like to bow before my Lord and pray to prepare to receive whatever He has in store…Now, I don’t always do that, but I have to say, the times where I am just sitting upright with closed eyes just don’t feel right to me anymore, so lately some sort of folding forward humbly is the only way I like to start…and you know what?  He does tell us to come like a child…=-)

Anyway, in that first picture, you see the girl’s arms are reaching forward, whereas in the second picture, the arms are back.  Both ways are great.  (One of the wonderful things about yoga, it meets you where YOU are…just like God…)  So, if you are feeling any shoulder tension, the second picture is the way to go.  Being someone who tends to hold stress in her shoulders, guess which way I often choose?  Or, I do the first version with bent arms and am conscious to relax my shoulders away from my ears.

Child’s pose can be a relaxation pose between vigorous yoga flows, or, by adding a focus on the breath, it can become an active pose.  It is most certainly a centering pose.  Just being still, breathing, and listening…maybe praying…a great pose for encouraging an opportunity to focus, if you find your mind and your life getting too distracting!

Physically, it stretches the lower body gently; think ankles, thighs, hips and low back.  It can be practiced with knees together as above, or knees apart:

Child's pose with wide legs

There are certain contraindications, or “issues in your tissues” which might cause you to choose a gentler form of Child’s Pose, or not choose it all!  It is not the most fun with certain tummy ailments, but it can be a help with nausea, depending (again, yoga meets you where you are.  This attention on focus also means really listening to your body…if it seems like your body is saying “this is a very bad idea”, go with that thought.  Don’t panic, just come out of whatever pose you are in gently and gracefully–physically AND mentally.  No judgement.  Just adjustment.).

Ankle, hip, or knee injuries or inflexibility (we all start somewhere) may want to choose a modification with props to ease the tightness or give more support and release.  (I often say the stronger yogi is not the one who doesn’t use props, but the one who DOES…they have let their ego go and know what feels the most delicious!)

While this is a fun parter yoga pose, notice the cushioning used by the bottom partner: great for use by oneself as well, if needed for ease in the legs!

He probably feels fine, but if he notices any strain in the lower back, or wants to have this be a more relaxing pose, I would suggest a pillow or blanket between his lower legs and upper legs...

(And sometimes it is not about flexibility, but how you were anatomically created…some poses will never work for some bodies, and that is ok!)

I mentioned Child’s Pose for relaxation above…one of my own personal favorite ways to get into Child’s Pose is by using a pillow or bolster beneath me.  I like to either turn my head as these ladies are demonstrating, or situate myself far enough forward that I can rest my forehead on a neck pillow just in front of the bolster…

Sometimes I love this pose so much I want to hug my bolster, too…;-)

Another way we physically bring about focus is in our intentions.  I know that at this time of year a lot of people are going on a diet…or, I hope, choosing a healthy diet lifestyle, meaning being intentional about what we put into our bodies—physical,mental,and emotional– on a regular basis (NOT going on some fad diet or deprivation diet).

And guess what?  I am not going to write a blog post about cleansing or dieting!  Nope.  I would imagine you have seen plenty of those already…instead, I am  just going to talk a little (very little, in fact) about one food that I enjoy which has protein, fiber, nutrients, carbs (the good kind) and is even detoxifying…They are even green, so I suspect they must have some kind of chlorophyll; major score there!

Drum roll, please….

Mung Beans.

You can eat them as beans, you can eat them as sprouts, and they are used in a myriad of other ways as well…(I know, it’s wikepedia.  Take it with a grain of sea salt.)
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mung_bean

Since beans in general can be a strain on the digestive system, depending on the person I suppose, I like to soak dry beans for quite awhile first (soaking and sprouting also tend to make more nutrients active or bioavaiable in nuts and beans, just fyi),

and then cook them in a saucepan with a sheet of Kombu (a seaweed which helps to tenderize them).

Now, I don’t know if it is just a Southern thing at New Year’s holiday time, or if it is all over the country, but in my family, you cannot begin a new year without black-eyed peas.  My husband is not a fan.  He can just tolerate them in my Mom’s Hoppin’ John dish.  We were not spending New Year’s with her, however, so I made some Mung Beans for myself to take the place of the obligatory Black Eyed Pea.  They taste fairly similar to me, or at least enough.  (Mom will probably say I am doomed to bad luck this year…luckily, I know my God is bigger than that!)  So, I guess you could say I have started my year with a bit of green, detoxifying luck…doused with a bit of mustard or ketchup or cranberry salsa; yum!

(Another yummy way to use mung beans is in an Indian dish called Kitchari, which depending on how you fix it, can be very balancing.  I made some last fall and blogged about it:  https://robynlooksup.wordpress.com/2011/09/16/fall-real-you-or-real-frayed-italian-noses-and-frazzles/ )

My prayer for you is that this year in 2012, you are able to focus.  You are able to center.  You are able to ignore the distractions and do what you are called to do, and remain balanced along the way!  Whatever your goal may be, looking neither to the left nor right, but zinging in on your true purpose and letting all the yucky –whether past or present– fall away as you move forward.  I pray you know the One who loves you, and you let Him lead you.  I pray you have Peaceful Purpose and Purposeful Peace…

You have before you the chance and choice to live the life you are called to…May you embrace it with a full, two arm hug!!!  You have a win-win possibility, you know!

Alive, I’m Christ’s messenger; dead, I’m his bounty. Life versus even more life! I can’t lose.  Phillipians 1:21 The Message

Amen.

This week’s blog-post?  A quick one.  Why?  I know that many of you of are striving to find and keep balance this week, preparing for the holiday while savoring the reason for the holiday…and I add my prayer to yours that you are able!  With God, all things are possible, and you can do anything in the One who made you who you are…(Matthew 19:26, Philippians 4:13)

A little later posting this, but for those who are just re-checking, OR, if you would still like to sign-up (never too late!  I pro-rate for new students!), here is the December/January schedule of classes for Vessels of Clay Yoga.

December 2011/January 2012 Monday night classes at TLCC

Series: All-levels, 8 weeks, $50 membership (see bottom for specials!)

Dates: December 5, 12, 19, January 2, 9, 16, 23, 30.
*We skip December 26th.

Time: 5:30 to 6:45 (-ish to 7)pm

Place: Tri-Lakes Christian Church (on Fagan Road, off Bee Creek Road…NOT the Tri-Lakes Center off 248)

Bring: mats, hand towels, straps (ties, belts, or actual yoga strap)..and any other props you like, for those who are experienced…

It’s time for another 8-week series of Christ-centered Yoga classes with Vessels of Clay Yoga!
Want help avoiding the holiday pounds and/or stress while reveling in the miracle of our Savior’s birth?
Come learn how to take care of your Divinely created temple in a non-stressful way while worshiping our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! We relax, sweat, laugh, breathe, and relax some more all in His name…and lose toxins and stress in the process!

As always, a drop-in option is available for $15 (which can be applied to total series cost should you want to continue regularly!).

(5 person minimum required to begin series.)

Specials! New students from these 3 churches receive a 10% discount if they mention this ad: Woodland Hills Family Church, Tri-lakes Christian Church, and Community Presbyterian of Forsyth

—————————————

Series: All-levels of Seniors and/or Limited Mobility folks, 8 weeks, $50 membership
–This is also a great class for those “with child”!!!

Dates: December 6, 20, 27, January 3, 10, 17, 24, 31

Time: 9 to 10:15am (10:30ish depending on your own relaxation time)

Place: Community Presbyterian Church in Forsyth

Bring: mats, hand towels, straps (ties, belts, or actual yoga strap)

It’s time for another 8-week series of Christ-centered Yoga classes with Vessels of Clay Yoga!
Want help avoiding the holiday pounds and/or stress while reveling in the miracle of our Savior’s birth?

Come learn how to take care of your Divinely created temple in a non-stressful way while worshiping our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ! We relax, sweat, laugh, breathe, and relax some more all in His name…and lose toxins and stress in the process!

As always, a drop-in option is available for $15 (which can be applied to total series cost if you wish to continue!).

(5 person minimum required to begin series.)

Specials! New students from these 3 churches receive a 10% discount if they mention this ad: Woodland Hills Family Church, Tri-lakes Christian Church, and Community Presbyterian of Forsyth.
—————————————————-

Finally, “a word from our sponsor”…no really.  THE WORD.

This week’s message at Vessels of Clay Yoga…I pray it helps as you prepare and remember who you are in Christ, and that our Father keeps His promises!

The words of Zachariah, after the birth of his son, John, when he regained the power of speech:

(Luke 1:69- 75, The Message)

Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel: he came and set his people free.

He set the power of salvation in the center of our lives, and in the very house of David his servant,

Just as he promised long ago through the preaching of his holy prophets:

Deliverance from our enemies and every hateful hand;

Mercy to our fathers, as he remembers to do what he said he’d do,

What he swore to our father Abraham—a clean rescue from the enemy camp,

So we can worship him without a care in the world, made holy before him as long we live.

 —————————————————-

Have a blessed and Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah, and or whatever-time-with-loved-ones-you-celebrate, everyone!

Love,

Robyn

Sweeties and Sweets….

Nope, this blog post is not about Canadian candy that we call Smarties here in the U.S….

It is about 2 things in my life with which I need to set boundaries and be moderate in my intake…see the previous blog post for a bit of background here:

https://robynlooksup.wordpress.com/2011/11/28/moderation-balance-biblical/

First, Sweeties?  I am talking about our Sweethearts…or rather our lack of Sweethearts, or our dreams about our sweethearts, or what we wish they might do (ahem)…And for this, I am going to point you to a great post written by my good friend, Sundi Jo Graham, about romantic movies.  Please do continue reading at the bottom of her blog to find my comment and the thoughts that I could have written a blog about myself!

http://www.sundijo.com/eight-reasons-why-i-hate-romantic-movies/

As for “Sweets”?

Well, unless you have been living under a carb-free rock for the last, I don’t know, millennium, you know that too much sugar is bad for you.  For some, even too much natural sugar from fruit can be bad!  Again, moderation.  I am a sweets-lover.  So, it is amazing too me when something is actually too sweet for me…and I definitely have to talk to myself and say, “you don’t HAVE to have something sweet after every meal.”  Brushing my teeth usually helps. That being said, there is another point here about balance that could be made…both Ayurveda and Traditional Chinese Medicine tell us that we need to be balanced in our “tastes” at every meal, or we may actually become unbalanced.  So, when you keep yourselves from anything sweet all the time, it is normal and healthy to feel you need some…thank the Lord He made some good ones!  (And by the way, in those traditions mentioned, sweet doesn’t necessarily mean, sugary…sometimes it is another food, say for example, rice or oats that has a natural “sweet flavor” and balances out other tastes in the meal that be salty, pungent, bitter, what-have-you.  Also, I have heard it said that when one is craving sweets, they are lacking some “sweet” in their lives, so it is something to certainly to go to Our Father about and ask…and it may just be more time with Him that you are craving!)

ANYWAY.

It’s time for my awesome segue…

I love sharing healthy recipes with you, and since it is that time of year when sweets abound all around us, how about a sweet and healthy pie?

You may all be done with pie at this point, so feel free to skip away, but if you have another big holiday coming up and would like to serve something tasty that you can feel good about, maybe this is your option?

We did not have a “traditional” Thanksgiving this year…we went down to have lunch with my Grandmother in the nursing home, so we didn’t have to cook!  (Afterwards, we went to see the new Muppet movie.  It is Amazing, fyi.)  So, between my mom, hubby, and I, we are spreading out some of our “traditional” dishes through the holiday season, a little at a time.

I had seen a few recipes for “Raw Pumpkin Pie” this year, and after looking at them with sweet hubby, decided on one.  The funny thing is, we both like Pumpkin Pie, but it is not our favorite, so after getting a few of the ingredients (I had the rest already), I wondered, what I had been thinking?

Plus, we never got around to carving our pumpkin before Halloween (can we say totally busy and tired and out-of-balance?), so we had a perfectly good one ready to carve up for a pie…but it was HUGE!

And, I had just sent my BlendTech off to be repaired while it was under warranty (has been making an odd noise), so I was going to have to use my small food processor.

All of these little insights led me to only make HALF of this recipe and divide it between 4 little silicone tart pans to make my “Raw Pumpkin Pie Tartlets”.

Raw Pumpkin Pie (from Hallelujah Acres website)

http://www.hacres.com/recipes/cards/raw-pumpkin-pie

Submitted By: Jackie Graff – Sprout Raw Food

A sweet, tasty Holiday dessert with absolutely no baking involved!

(This is the full recipe; to do what I did, divide by half.  You will have a little extra filling, as well.)

Ingredients

  • 1 avocado, peeled and seeded
  • ½ cup raw honey
  • 4 dates soaked in 1 cup filtered water
  • 2 tsp vanilla
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • ¼ tsp ground nutmeg
  • ½ tsp ginger powder
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1 cup raw macadamias soaked 8 hours and drained (I used raw almonds because it is what I had)
  • 4 cups raw pumpkin, peeled and seeded
  • 1 cup organic raisins
  • 1 tsp psyllium
  • ½ cup pumpkin seeds, washed, soaked for 8 hours, drained and dehydrated for 6 – 8 hours (I did not do this; I used Cashew Creme instead)
  • **1 date nut crust variation from The Hallelujah Diet Book (as opposed to the crust actually listed with this recipe.  For me, the other was easier, and I have used it many times before.)

Directions

  1. Place macadamias  (almonds) along with dates and their soak water into blender (or food processor) and blend until smooth.
  2. Add avocado, honey, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, salt and pumpkin and blend until very smooth.
  3. Add psyllium and blend well. Let this mixture sit for 1-2 minutes and blend well again.
  4. Fold in raisins.
  5. Pour into piecrust and top with ½ cup of pumpkin seeds. (or cashew creme, as I did)

**Date and Nut crust Variation: As I was running low on almonds, but had plenty of almond flour, I combined 1 cup of almond flour with 1/2 cup of dates, and 1/4 to 1/2 tsp sea salt in my food processor with 2 tablespoons to 1/4 cup honey until it gathered into a ball…I then separated it into 4 sections, pressing each into a little tartlet pan.  When the filling was ready, I scooped it into the pans and placed them into the fridge to chill while I made the Cashew Creme.

Nomi Shannon’s (The Raw Gourmet) Cashew Creme

DIRECTIONS

Soak cashews overnight. Drain. Put in blender with just enough water to allow blender to do its job. Add only enough water to make it smooth, then add dates one at a time, or agave syrup or maple syrup to sweeten, taste for sweetness. You want to achieve a fluffy whipped-cream type consistency. I like it best when vanilla is added too.

1 cup of cashews will make 1 1/2 or more cups of cashew crème. (I only used 1/2 cup of soaked cashews.)

–for more great raw dessert recipes by Nomi Shannon, go to:

http://rawgourmet.com/recipes#dessert

The verdict?  Yum!  Before I added the pumpkin, I noticed that the filling tasted a bit like Maple Brown Sugar Oatmeal, if you have ever had THAT. And I love that flavor!  The pumpkin really didn’t change that, either.

Here is my precaution:  These little dudes are SWEET.  I mean, so super sweet!  Like, I only ate 1/3 of mine (one tartlet) the first night!  The next morning, I used part of the rest (of the same tartlet) as my sweetener in my oatmeal!  And then at lunch, I used the last bit as a sweetener/thickener in my green smoothie!  So, if you like sweets, you will enjoy this, but know that it might not be as hard as usual to exercise moderation…IF you are eating consciously, and not while watching TV or something else distracting…

Do  they taste like Pumpkin Pie?  A bit.  Really, they do!  The spices are spot-on…I think the sweetness threw me a little at first, but then, I think Pumpkin Pie itself is super sweet, so there ya go…

Whatever you decide, know that these are nutrient giving, life-in-your-cells enhancing treats…

Also, since we had soooo much pumpkin left, I chopped or grated the rest into fry shapes and noodle shapes to use as a fun vegetable all winter!  Let’s hear it for pumpkin fries and pasta, and being a good steward with what God has given us!  AND, Jon roasted the seeds.  Num.

Here’s to moderation…and moderation of your moderation, sometimes.  I pray you seek Our Lord for His Sweetness, in love and life, every part you can…

With a great big, non-pumpkin-innards-covered fingers hug (cuz my sweetie was my hero and scooped them out FOR ME!),

Robyn

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