If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve probably noticed that I’ve been traveling a lot recently. I’m admitting right now, that I’ve been terrible at doing travel posts. Most of my trips recently have consisted of loads of mediocre iPhone photos, but this time I decided to bring my shmancy camera along with me so I could share what I’ve been up to on my blog!

I spent the past 4 days in Seattle with Matt visiting his sister Olivia, her husband Michael, and their little babes Nixon and Maddox. I cannot tell you how badly I have been craving fall weather. It hasn’t been under 75 degrees in southern California in the past few months and all I’ve wanted to do is wear beanies, scarves, boots, and make veggie soups! Seattle was the best change of scenery to get my fall fix. It was a high of 60 each day with a few showers here and there. This was my first time in Seattle, and I fell in love. Everything is so lush and green, and there’s endless amounts of amazing restaurants.

On our first day in Seattle, Olivia and Michael took us to a pumpkin patch. I feel like a really excited toddler when I talk about this, because this was my first REAL pumpkin patch. Where I am from, Pumpkin patches are pretty… lame. They’re essentially just a pile of pumpkins sitting near two haystacks, and most of them take credit cards. But this pumpkin patch was the real deal that most of us California kids don’t get to experience – the kind that only takes cash, has pumpkins still growing on the vine, a corn maze, tractor rides, and home made kettle corn. You’re probably sitting at your computer right now laughing at me because you’ve grown up going to awesome pumpkin patches, but this experience made me so happy!

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Seattle-2 The first thing we did was a 5 acre corn maze (my friend Jocelyn from Iowa would be so proud!). When we entered, they gave us the choice of either Seahawks trivia or US history questions to get us through the maze. Since none of us are Seahawks fans, we opted for US history. I instantly remembered why I got a C in this subject my freshman year of high school. If the group had to rely on me to get out of the maze, we would be there for days. 45 minutes and miles of walking later, we made it out alive.

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Seattle-16 Matt, Olivia, Michael, Nixon, and Maddox in the corn maze!

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Seattle-15 Nixon and Maddox couldn’t wait for the maze to be over so they could go see the animals and play with the bubbles on the farm at the patch.

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Seattle-5 Matt’s mad bubble skills.

Seattle-6 This was one of our favorite photos from the day. Matt and Michael were getting really into the bubbles, so I was trying to take suh-weeeet artistic photos of them, and right as I snapped this shot, Michael photobombed Matt’s bubble, behind another bubble! Such. good. timing.

Seattle-9 I love this shot of Maddox sitting on the giant pumpkin in his little rain boots.

Seattle-11 The boys LOVE tractors and sat and watched the tractor drive us around the entire pumpkin patch.

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Seattle-10Beanie: Agape Attire  |   Jacket: Agape Attire  |  Jeans: AG  |  Booties:  Volcom

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More from my visit to the Pike Place Market in Seattle {Part Deux} tomorrow!
And thennnn I’m off to Dallas for another trip!

Health & Happiness
xo Catherine

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Did you know that anytime you buy a Pitaya smoothie pack, smoothie or smoothie bowl during the month of October, you’re helping raise money for Breast Cancer Research?!

Pitaya for the Cure

Since October is Breast Cancer Awareness month, I’m collaborating with Pitaya Plus to help find a cure! This year, Pitaya Plus is donating 10% of their sales from the month of October to Play for P.I.N.K. Last year, Play for P.I.N.K. donated $4.25M to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation, which funded 17 life-saving research projects.

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Pitaya Jam
Makes about 1 cup

2 packs Pitaya Plus
2 Tbsp chia seeds

Thaw 2 packs of frozen Pitaya Plus under hot water. Pour the liquid pitaya into a glass jar and mix with chia seeds. refrigerate overnight or for at least 4 hours until chia seeds expand and jam thickens.

Pitaya Plus Im Raw HatNow it’s your chance to help me spread awareness for “Pitaya 4 the Cure” + Breast Cancer Research and win an official “I’m Raw” Pitaya Plus hat!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Must use a valid email address to enter. Contest open to bunnies from all different countries!
Giveaway ends on Thursday, October 16th at 11:59 PM (PST).
1 winner will be randomly selected and announced on Friday, October 17th.
 

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As promised, I have a fun pumpkin recipe for my little bunnies! These Mini Pumpkin Pies are vegan, refined sugar-free, flour-less, and gluten-free!

Natural Delights sent me a box of fresh Medjool dates, so I experimented using them as a natural sweetener in my pumpkin pie filling. My taste testers (a.k.a Matt and my sister, Jessica) loved how the pumpkin filling turned out. I bet it would be uhhh-mazing as a parfait or with yogurt and granola!

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Mini-Vegan-Pumpkin-Pies-1Studded Pumpkins can be found on RachelGeorge.com.

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Mini {vegan} Pumpkin Pies
Makes 12

For the Crust:
2 cups rolled oats (uncontaminated gluten-free oats)
1 1/2 cups walnuts
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup agave
2 Tbsp Coconut Oil

For the Filling:
1 cup canned pumpkin purree
5 medjool dates, pitted
1 Tbsp almond milk
1 tsp pumpkin pie spice (or 1/2 tsp cinnamon, 1/4 tsp ginger, and 1/4 tsp nutmeg)
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. In a food processor, pulse oats until flour consistency. Next add nuts, spices, and remaining crust ingredients until a dough consistency is formed. Spray a regular sized muffin tin with nonstick cooking spray. Evenly distribute the dough and press down into each sprayed muffin tin, forming little crusts. Bake in the oven for 15-17 minutes. While the crusts are baking, combine pumpkin puree, Medjool dates, almond milk, spices, and vanilla extract in a food processor and blend until smooth. When the crusts have finished baking, remove from oven and let them cool completely. Once crusts have cooled, remove from the tin with a knife. Fill each crust evenly with pumpkin mixture. Store in refrigerator.

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HAPPY NATIONAL KALE DAY!!!!
Today is literally my favorite holiday. You guys know that I LOVE kale. I use in anything and everything from salads, to soups and smoothies, and now… pesto!

Ok, so quick story time before I get to the goods: I’ve never liked pesto, and I’m starting to realize that it’s because I don’t like basil, not necessarily pesto. Have you ever heard anyone say that if you really really despise a certain food that it might actually be a sign that you are slightly allergic to it? I’m kind of into this theory. I’ve noticed that every time I eat basil, my nose/sinuses get reallllyyy plugged up, so I think that “not liking pesto (or basil) has been my body telling me to avoid it. Weird? Maybe I’m reading too much into it, but my great uncle absolutely despised peanuts and peanut butter when he was younger, and well… it turned out that he had a severe allergy to them! Back to the point though, I’ve never liked basil pesto and always wanted to like it, so I came up with a pesto made from Baby Kale!

This recipe is so simple and easy to make. No cooking and minimal prep required! You can have fresh homemade Kale Pesto in a matter of minutes! My Kale Pesto is gluten-free, vegan, and loaded with healthy benefits.

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Let’s get to know the main ingredient: KALE!
ALL HAIL KALE!

1. Kale is low in calorie, high in fiber and has zero fat. One cup of kale has only 36 calories, 5 grams of fiber and 0 grams of fat. It is great for aiding in digestion and elimination with its great fiber content. It’s also filled with so many nutrients, vitamins, folate and magnesium as well as those listed below.

2. Kale is high in iron. Per calorie, kale has more iron than beef. Iron is essential for good health, such as the formation of hemoglobin and enzymes, transporting oxygen to various parts of the body, cell growth, proper liver function and more.

3. Kale is high in Vitamin K. Eating a diet high in Vitamin K can help protect against various cancers. It is also necessary for a wide variety of bodily functions including normal bone health and blood clotting. Also increased levels of vitamin K can help people suffering from Alzheimer’s disease.

4. Kale is filled with powerful antioxidants. Antioxidants, such as carotenoids and flavonoids help protect against various cancers.

5. Kale is a great anti-inflammatory food. One cup of kale is filled with 10% of the RDA of omega-3 fatty acids, which help, fight against arthritis, asthma and autoimmune disorders.

6. Kale is great for cardiovascular support. Eating more kale can help lower cholesterol levels.

7. Kale is high in Vitamin A. Vitamin A is great for your vision, your skin as well as helping to prevent lung and oral cavity cancers.

8. Kale is high in Vitamin C. This is very helpful for your immune system, your metabolism and your hydration.

9. Kale is high in calcium. Per calorie, kale has more calcium than milk, which aids in preventing bone loss, preventing osteoporosis and maintaining a healthy metabolism. Vitamin C is also helpful to maintain cartilage and joint flexibility

10. Kale is a great detox food. Kale is filled with fiber and sulfur, both great for detoxifying your body and keeping your liver healthy.
(source)

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Kale Pesto
Makes about 1 cup

2 cups DOLE Power Up Greens – Baby Kale
1/4 cup olive oil
1/4 cup pistachios, shells removed
1/4 cup nutritional yeast
1-2 cloves fresh garlic

Combine all ingredients in a food processor and blend until well mixed.

Tip: I used roasted salted pistachios, so I did not add any additional salt. If you use unsalted pistachios, add a pinch of salt to the recipe!

 

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In celebration of National Kale Day, I’m hosting a giveaway with Dole Salads!
One lucky RFFMBT reader will win:

  • A copy of “KALE: The Complete Guide to the World’s Most Powerful Superfood” by Stephanie Pedersen
  • Dole Coupons
  • Dole Tote Bag
  • Dole Tumbler
  • Dole Power Up Greens Yoga Mat
  • Dole Headphones

a Rafflecopter giveaway

*Must use a valid email address to enter. Must be a US resident to enter.

Giveaway ends on Sunday, October 5th at 11:59 PM (PST).
1 winner will be randomly selected and announced on Monday, October 6th.

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Happy fall everybunny!  It’s officially fall, but California still thinks it’s summer. Kind of awesome, kind of not, especially when the rest of the country is shopping for boots and scarves while sipping on pumpkin spice lattes, and we are over here sweating it out during this insane heat wave! I’m having fall FOMO (fear of missing out) and want to wear all of my fall clothes, dark nails, and dark lipstick!

So if you live on the west coast, or you’re experiencing a heat wave like we are, these popsicles are the perfect way to cool down. Greek yogurt popsicles are awesome because they’re creamy and loaded with protein! I love combining them with fresh passionfruit for a sweet and tart combo and some crunch from the seeds. Great for post-workout, an afternoon pick-me-up, or healthy dessert option!

But don’t worry, I’m working on some healthy pumpkin recipes for all of my pumpkin loving bunnies!

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Passionfruit Protein Popsicles
Makes 4 Popsicles

1  (16 oz.) container Chobani 0% Original Greek Yogurt
2 passionfruit

Cut passionfruit in half, scoop out each half of the fruit and place in the bottom of a popsicle mold. Fill the rest of the popsicle mold with Greek yogurt. Freeze overnight and enjoy.

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