Fruit for Lunch, also now known as Fruit Party!!

With all the abundance of fresh yummy fruit in the summer, we decided one super hot day to just have as much cold fruit as we could eat for lunch! So we stopped at the store and bought any fruit that looked or smelled awesome! (Side note, that sounds expensive, but we realized it cost the same amount as if we’d gone to taco bell or any other fast food place) My youngest daughter dubbed the meal: Fruit Party!

When we got home we cut it up and devoured it, but not before I took this scrumptious photo!

Fruit Party

Raw Lunch Ideas

I’m still eating vegan dinners, but lately for lunch I’ve started doing Raw Till 4 again, which looks like this through the day…

Breakfast – one quart Fruit Drink
options:
Strawberry Cherry
Strawberry Blueberry
Strawberry Peach
Banana Blueberry
(See recipes below)

Midmorning Snack – Whole Fruit
options:
1 Gala Apple
1 large banana

Lunch – Whole Fruit
options:
4 pears with 2 oranges
5 apples with 3 tangerines
5 bananas with half a bowl of blueberries
1 cantaloupe with sliced strawberries

Afternoon Snack – one pint Fruit Juice with Whole Fruit
Juice options:
Apple Juice
Apple Pineapple Juice
Orange Juice

Whole Fruit options:
Three tangerines
1 large banana
Bowl of berries
2 oranges
Cherry tomatoes

I don’t have as much variety through the winter, but I lost three pounds the first week that I maintained Raw til 4 with low fat vegan dinners, and I have a lot more energy, so I’ll continue on!

A Bowl of Lunch:

Drink Recipes:

Strawberry Fruit Drink
Makes 2 Quarts
4-5 cups water
2 cups frozen strawberries
1 cup other frozen fruit
1 ripe banana
4 dates or prunes
Drizzle of honey
Blend thoroughly.

Blueberry Fruit Drink
Makes 1 Quart
1 cup almond milk
1 cup water
2 large spotty bananas
1/2 cup frozen blueberries
2 pitted dates (optional)
Blend thoroughly.

Crocheted Fruit Cozy

My fruit was getting bashed up in my backpack, simple solution, make a fruit cozy!

Fruit Cozy
Start: Ch 4, join to form a loop
Round 1: ch 3, 9 dc in loop, join
Round 2: ch 2, 2 dc in each dc, join
Round 3: ch 2, 2 dc the 1 dc around, join
Round 4-6: ch 2, 1 dc in each dc, join
Round 7: slip st in each dc around
-to make it striped, switch colors at the beginning of each round.

Halloween Time!

Well, I started this costume with no clear idea of how it would look in the end…. I made hair falls, a crochet fruit necklace, a muslin skirt dyed with real fruit, and a pixie hat which I didn’t end up wearing. It all came together and I got nice comments through the day♥ I’m looking forward to trick or treating with my little fairy girls tonight, I think we’ll make quite a trio!

Blocking Crochet

Just wanted to mention that when I made the crochet fruit the other day, I decided to ‘block’ them, and while I was at it I did the fall leaves I made last month too. It’s been a long time since I blocked anything, but the process is simple enough, soak the item in water for about a half hour, then pull it into shape, and stick pins in in to force the shape, even after it’s dry again. Blocking on a fluffy towel has the benefit of both giving something for the pins to stick into, and soaking up the excess water as the item dries. My mother often used starch when blocking, but even as a teen I didn’t like the stiff feeling that gave my work, and now that I’m shunning most chemicals these days, an extra aerosol can around the house seems counterintuitive. So, I used water only, and for this project, it worked just fine!

My Halloween Costume – Part 3 – Fruit Jewelry

I really wanted to try my hand at making the popular ‘real fruit jewelry’, using these Fruit Jewelry Guides: eHow, Garden Guides, Carrot Museum
The basics seem to be to slice fruit really thin, then put it in the dehydrator and spray with sealer every so often. However, all the sealer/shelac that I could find seemed rather toxic, and I don’t want to ruin my expensive dehydrator. Not to mention running the thing for three days, what a waste of electricity!

So instead I decided to crochet some slices of fruit for my costume… I could not find any patterns, so I winged it. I tried to write out my stiches as I went, and I’m not sure how well I did, so if you decide to try the patterns below, perhaps use them as a guide only, trusting your better judgment to make them work :)

Apple
Fruit, cream, DMC Floss #739 Ultra Very Light Tan
-ch 6, sc in second sc from hook, and in each sc (5st)
-ch 1, twist slightly and sc along the bottom of the chain (5st)
-ch 1, twist slightly and sc along the top of the sc line (5st)
-ch 1, twist slightly and sc along the bottom of the sc line, and 2 sc, 2 sc in sc, sc in sc, sc in sc
-ch 1, 2 sc in ch, ch 1, *sc in sc, then 2 sc in sc*, repeat from * around
-ch 1, 2 sc in ch, 1 sc in 3, 2 sc in sc
-ch 1, 2 sc in ch, 4 sc, 3 hdc, 4 dc, 2 sc along “top”
-4 dc, 4 hdc, 4 sc, 1 slip st
Peel, red, DMC Floss #814 Dark Garnet
-join red with slip st, start at “bottom” go one row of sc around, tossing in 2 sc in one st every 4 spaces or so
-3 slip st at the top of the apple, instead of sc.
Stem, brown, DMC Floss #632 Ultra Very Dark Desert Sand
-ch 5, sc in second ch from hook, sc in last 3 spaces
Leaf, DMC Floss #699 Christmas Green
-ch 5, sc in second ch from hook, sc in last 3 spaces

Cherry
Fruit, red, DMC Floss #814 Dark Garnet
-ch 2, 6 sc in second ch from hook
-2 sc in each sc (12st)
-*sc in sc, 2 sc in sc*, repeat from * around
Stem, brown, DMC Floss #632 Ultra Very Dark Desert Sand
Join brown with ch, ch 3, sc in second and third ch from hook
Leaf, DMC Floss #909 Very Dark Emerald Green
Join green with ch, ch 3, sc in second and third ch from hook

Kiwi
Fruit, green, DMC Floss #3346 Hunter Green
-ch 2, 6 sc in second ch from hook
-1 sc in each sc, slip st to join (6st)
-join green with ch 1, 2 sc in each sc, slip st to join (12st)
-ch 1, *2 sc in sc, 1 sc in sc*, repeat from *around, slip st to join
-ch 1, sc in each sc around, slip st to join
-ch 1, sc in each sc around, slip st to join
Peel, brown, DMC Floss #839 Dark Beige Brown
Join brown with slip st, ch 1, sc in each sc around, slip st to join

Lemon
Fruit, light yellow, DMC Floss #745 Light Pale Yellow
-ch 2, 6 sc in second ch from hook
-1 sc in each sc, slip st to join (6st)
-join green with ch 1, 2 sc in each sc, slip st to join (12st)
-ch 1, *2 sc in sc, 1 sc in sc*, repeat from *around, slip st to join
-ch 1, sc in each sc around, slip st to join
-ch 1, sc in each sc around, slip st to join
Peel, bright yellow, DMC Floss #726 Light Topaz
Join brown with slip st, ch 1, sc in each sc around, slip st to join

Pineapple
Peel, brown, DMC Floss #938 Ultra Dark Coffee Brown
-ch 11, sc in second ch from hook, and all chains across (10st)
-ch 1, turn, sc in each sc (10 st)
-ch 1, turn, slip st in each sc (10 st)
Fruit, yellow, DMC Floss #725 Topaz
-Join yellow with a ch 1, sc across
-sc in each row to top, doing 1 sc in the middle of every other row
Note: also sc in ch space to keep edges looking neat

Strawberry
Body, red, DMC Floss #666 Bright Christmas Red
-ch 7, sc in second ch from hook, and in each til end (6st)
-ch2, dc in the very first ch, dc in remaining stiches, (6st)
-At end of row do 5 hdc to form a “bottom”
-6 dc up the side to the “top”
-slip st all the way around
Stem, DMC Floss #699 Christmas Green
-ch 3, sc in second ch from hook, and in next ch (2st)
-ch 3, sc in second ch from hook, and in next ch (2st)
-ch 3, sc in second ch from hook, and in next ch, then slip st in very first ch

Watermelon
Peel, DMC Floss #904 Very Dark Parrot Green
-ch 11, sc in second ch from hook, and all chains across (10st)
-ch 1, turn, sc in each sc (10 st)
Peel, cream, DMC Floss #739 Ultra Very Light Tan
-join white with ch 1, turn, slip st in each sc (10 st)
Fruit, pink, DMC Floss #892 Medium Carnation
-Join pink with a ch 1, sc across
-sc in each row to top, doing 1 sc in the middle of every other row
Note: also sc in ch space to keep edges looking neat

Oatmeal, a Rediscovery

While my brother was visiting he wanted to make oatmeal, I told him I can only make instant, and he told me I’m a disgrace to mankind, or something of the like. I used to love oatmeal, I’d whip it up for any reason, there was one year awhile back that I ate it every morning for breakfast, with a good dollop of brown sugar mixed in. However, since I actually didn’t know how to make oatmeal without the handy little packets and a microwave (and we don’t own a microwave anymore), my nice brother patiently taught me to make it on the stove. And it was easy!! One cup of oatmeal boiled in two cups of water, and you are there!

This is the family’s new favorite meal/snack, and as long as there is a good mixture of sweet fruit, I’m not even tempted to go back to brown sugar… well not very much…

Here is our version of our favorite oatmeal recipe so far:

Chocolate Oatmeal
Serves 4

2 cups gluten free rolled oats
2 cups almond milk
2 tsp. vanilla
2 banana, sliced thinly
2 TBSP. chocolate or carob powder
3 apple, chopped into very small squares

In a saucepan combine 2 cups of oats, 2 cups of almond milk, and 2 cups of water. Bring to a boil, reduce heat to medium, cook for about eight minutes, stirring frequently. Add vanilla, bananas, and powder. Stir well. Cook for several more minutes, or until desired consistency, do not overcook. Top with bits of apple.

You can find the original recipe here, at one of my favorite sites: Clean Eating Chelsey

(This was sort of a “lost post”, I’m meant to share this around the beginning of September, and it got misplaced, lol!)

Lunch Box Fun! Fruit Faces…

When looking into plastic free and glass free options for school lunches I settled on stainless steel. Since it’s VERY expensive comparatively, I poured over the reviews of every stainless steel lunch container on amazon. Some lids were too tight, others too loose. Some were too hard for children to open, some of them turned strange colors, or rusted. Finally, like Goldilocks, I found one that was just right. Greentainer. (www.greentainerusa.com) So I ordered one in each size and they have been working perfectly!

A while ago I saw this funny idea on the blog Eclectic Lamb, to make lunch box items with faces on them, or to put faces on them. I immediately thought of some scrapbooking supplies I have that would be perfect for that! I got them all onto a sheet of paper, printed it in color, cut them out, and stuck them on with a daub of honey. This is one of the small pears I sent to school with my daughter! ♥

 

You can download the page that I used to decorate her lunch here:
Fruit Faces to Print

They came from these digital scrapbooking websites:
Kate Hadfield Designs – “Beths Belief”
The Daily Digi – “Things I Love About You”

Blackberries!!

Blackberry season has arrived and every day over the last week I find myself drawn to the side fence where the blackberries have exploded into production of juicy berries. They remind me of the carefully tended berry vines that my grandpa grew in the Arizona desert. Over the years I thought I’d lost my taste for blackberries, all the store bought berries were small …and sour. Now I realize that I still love blackberries… but only the sun-warmed, sweet, burst-in-your-mouth, right-off-the-vine-ripe kind!

A Great Flavor

When you think of awesome foods that complement each other, keep in mind that fruits often go well with each other! Some of my very favorite pairings, as whole fruit or in a blender, are:
Strawberry and Peach
Orange and Pineapple
Blueberry and Banana
AND…
Cantaloupe and Strawberry! YUM!

Cantaloupe and Strawberry!