Sunday, June 30, 2013

Bike Riding

I love my bike!

You might have read what I wrote about riding my bike in this blog post titled "Second Chances".  Add trail riding to everything that I said before!  The mountain trails are exhilarating and so scenic!

We just got back from trying portions of 3 trails in Northern California.  I can use a lot of words and descriptions in this post about why this is so fun for me - but, better, c'mon and see this video.

(The most fun rides do require two hands on the handlebars and paying close attention to every rock and bump on the trail, so the video cannot show this with my current camera setup.)


Wednesday, June 19, 2013


Of all the little luxuries that await us in life, many are but an ordinary substance - yet it will transform the mundane moment into something special.  I am talking about pancakes here, a breakfast regular, a staple, an expectation on every breakfast menu.  Serving "pancakes" is about something special.  A treat saved for when company comes, or an indulgence if fixed for one person.

I was invited to join a Pinterest Board called "Culling Frugal Luxuries"  I contemplated that title for some time.  Pancakes!  Making pancakes is "culling frugal luxuries"!  I remember as children, we used to beg visitors to stay overnight because we knew our Mom would make pancakes in the morning if they did!  While visiting a dear friend we immediately started planning what we will do together upon my arrival... lunch out, shopping. ... And in the morning... we will make PANCAKES!  And, oh the smell of pancakes on a camp out in the woods!  The butter, the syrup, it's an experience to savor!
Pancake mixes seem a little silly to me, a few simple ingredients is all one needs to make them for scratch.  Eggs, milk, flour, leavening, oil and a bit of sugar or honey.  Healthy diets can be adhered to by using whole grains and egg whites.  Substitutions of bananas for the eggs, and almond milk for cow's milk can take the pancake totally non-diary.

Yeast pancakes, blueberry pancakes, whole wheat and oatmeal pancakes - I never get bored of the variations and recipes! (I have learned to eat just one.)  The rest I bake up, put wax paper in-between each once they have cooled, then freeze in a storage bag.  They are ready to take out one by one and stick into the toaster on a moents notice.

Yep, you can be "special" everyday!

My recipes vary as I take on the creation of just the right texture and flavors. Here is my latest creation -

1c. all-purpose flour
1c. white whole wheat four
1c. old fashioned Oats
2t. Baking Powder
1t. Baking Soda
3T. pure Maple Syrup (or sugar)
3T. butter melted (subs. Coconut Oil)
2c. Buttermilk (or Almond Milk + 2T. Lemon Juice)
2 eggs (or 3 mashed bananas)
1/3c. water
1/4 t. Cardamom
1t. grated Orange Zest
Add a cup of fresh or frozen Blueberries to the batter (optional)

Just mix it all up with a wire wisk and pour dripping ladles full onto a prepared and preheated griddle. Flip.

You know the rest!