Monday, January 20, 2014

21 Day Sugar Detox - Day 14 - Valentine's Gift Idea

My Day 14 was pretty uneventful and lazy.  In the sad news department, I'm still having cravings.  I just remind myself that I shouldn't be a cheater and I'll just disappoint myself.  Then I make some tea which for some reason helps the cravings go away a bit.

Traditional Medicinals tea and my NOLA mug, yummm.
For Day 14 I spent most of the day watching football (go Broncos!), putting a dent in my Perrier stash from Sam's, and working on my Valentine's gift for P.  P if you're reading this, don't read the next part or your gift will be ruined!!!

...are you still reading?!  You better not be.  You know I'll know!!

Ok, so I got my brilliant gift idea by stealing it from one of my best friends.  So it's really not my idea but that's ok because it's my favoritest gift idea for Valentine's ever, and since it's unique to each person, nobody will have a copy!  What I did was I made P a photobook on Shutterfly.  Shutterfly has a photobook deal going on right now through the end of January 22, 2014 with the code UP40PB.  They also offer free standard shipping on purchases over $30 (the photobook will cost a bit more than that) with the code SHIP30.  

It takes a lot of time to upload the pictures, arrange them, and put in narration - if you want it to look nice.   But I loved the end product, worth every minute!  If you have a laptop and a Netflix addiction, this will all work in your favor.  You can save your project as you go and just work on it a little at a time too.  Anyway, I've decided I'll give him a sort of "yearbook" every Valentine's now, documenting all of the things we did together the previous year.  Since this is the first year I made one, I made it from the beginning of our friendship to the end of 2013.  Next year will be a "2014 Yearbook" sort of thing.  Here is a couple page spread from the book I made to give you sort of an idea what I'm talking about:

Reasons I love this gift idea: It's from the heart.  It's sort of homemade and it's definitely personal.  It's not chocolate!  We are trying to be healthy and even if we weren't, nobody needs all that chocolate.  Guys aren't really into flowers.  And I've already done the lingerie thing, which, while sexy and fun, isn't memorable in the long run.  Plus, as time passes we tend to forget events and things, so it's a nice reminder of the good times we've had.  I included personal pictures in my book too, you know those pictures you take but don't share with everyone, just of every day stuff like P making breakfast or playing with the dogs.  They're meaningful to us but everyone on the internet doesn't want or need to see them.  Valentine's is also the perfect time for this gift because you'll have photos through New Years to use.

Shutterfly doesn't even know I'm writing this about them and I'm sure you can get photobooks elsewhere.  But Shutterfly has tons of different styles of books you can start with and tons more free stuff like stamps, such as the "Life is Sweet" one I used above, to add to your pages.  They have really cute and colorful layouts, different themes, or sleek and modern styles.  It's really flexible and it doesn't take too long to figure out how to work all the features to make your book.  I chose the 12x12 style and made a 35 page book.  It was originally over $90 (yikes!) but I got 40% and free shipping so my total price was just over $50.  Expensive, but not ridiculous.  There are a few smaller book options and you'll probably use less than 35 pages (remember, I had more than a year's worth of photos in mine) so yours could be loads cheaper. 

Now, on to my detox!  I was lazy as I mentioned before, so I didn't cook anything that exciting.  For breakfast I had 21DSD pumpkin pancakes with almond butter:

The original recipe called for making a vanilla bean coconut cream spread.  I made it, but wasn't the hugest fan of it.  I did save it to try again later, but the almond butter just worked better for me (see its gooey goodness in the picture? NOM!).  Then I decided I wanted a snack for the afternoon so I made baked kale chips from the 21DSD book.  

I made it in two batches because one of my baking sheets is too long so I can't fit my baking sheets in my little oven side by side (I know I know I should buy another sheet).  The first batch I cooked too long (20 minutes) and sort of burned it.  I would recommend baking for 12 minutes, and then checking and going up a little at a time from there.  I baked the second batch for 12 minutes and it was just right.  The seasoning is really tasty, and P even requested it as one of our Super Bowl party snacks (yup, we're throwing a party which means LOTS of recipes coming to you soon!). 

I did not use brewer's yeast as the recipe suggests.  Rather, I just used 5 tbsp. of almond meal and we thought it tasted great.  So don't sweat getting 2 specialty items, the almond meal will work with lots more 21DSD and Paleo recipes than the yeast anyway.  For dinner I was lazy and just made more zoodles (zucchini noodles) with more spicy peanut sauce.  I ate a little too much nut butter over the course of the day, but I'm not going to sweat it, it's not an everyday occurrence.  2 weeks down!  Woo-hoo!

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