Almond Joy Cookies

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Remember those smells, tastes, or sounds that ultimately bring back memories from days gone by?  Today, for me, it was the smell of coconut.  Growing up I was not a coconut fan.  My aunt Sandra would make coconut pie every holiday and everyone loved it, but as a kid, I thought, eh, it’s ok.  I wanted the chocolate pie – that was my fave.  Then I grew up and realized I liked coconut, especially when paired with chocolate.  Duh.

When was the last time you had an Almond Joy?  I absolutely cannot remember the last time I did, so when I saw this recipe, I thought, why not?  These almond joy cookies are delicious and not filled with unpronounceable chemical ingredients, like an Almond Joy candy bar, or even a store-bought cookie would have in them.  You should make these cookies – they were unbelievably easy to do.  Of course I did tweak the recipe for my taste, and you can do the same. So here goes:

Almond Joy Cookies (dairy-free and gluten-free)

¾ ground almonds (makes a light flour)
¼ coconut flour
½ tsp salt
1 tsp baking soda
1 tablespoon coconut oil
1 tsp vanilla extract (or ½ tsp almond and ½ tsp coconut extract)
¼ cup agave nectar
½ cup almond butter
1 whole egg + 1 egg yolk
¾ cup unsweetened coconut
½ cup chocolate chips (use vegan choc chips for dairy-free option)

1.  In a small bowl mix dry ingredients together.
2.  In a medium bowl mix wet ingredients until smooth, about 2 minutes.
3.  Add coconut to wet ingredients and stir until mixed in thoroughly.
4.  Slowly add dry ingredients to wet ingredients until all is incorporated and in a dough form.
5.  Fold chocolate chips in the dough.
6.  Scoop 1-tablespoon portions onto baking sheet covered with parchment paper. If you want flat cookies, gently flatten with your scoop.
7.  Put in fridge for 30 minutes to set.
8.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake cookies until edges are brown (about 12-15 minutes).
9.  Allow to cool.
10. ENJOY!

Now the house smells incredible.  I’m not sure how long these cookies will last for me – I’m going to have to freeze or hide them.  I am going to give some to Sue, one of my sweetest clients, who loves to bake and gives me a sample of her baked goods every Thursday (another reason I work out hard!). Now it’s my turn to feed her!

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Happy September!


I’m back! And finally getting my act together to write again. This writing stuff is hard – so much to say, so little time to say it.

Also, it’s time to get back on track. Summer is over, the children are back to school, and you need your routine. Right? I mean, AM I RIGHT? So, to begin, the September Challenge is The Scientific 7-Minute Workout, posted in the New York Times Magazine recently. Do this workout two-to-three times weekly, at a rate of perceived exertion (see chart) of 7-8, and log it. RPE I want to know how it’s going. It’s seven minutes, and it should be seven uncomfortable minutes, if you’re working it. So, work it. You can do this at home or at the gym. I’ve seen many people bring this in to the gym to work on it and I’ve tried it on some of my clients. It’s fast, fun, and furious!

Here are my feet and a step and we are going to rock out some freestyle choreography. I love teaching a choreostep class. I feel so alive and free when moving to the beat of my own choreography.

So, I’m always looking for different, good foods and, of course, we are trying to keep it as healthy as possible, so after scrolling through a TON of blogs, I found the following things I’ve tried and want to try. My favorites so far:

Raw cookie dough balls
Cashew Cream (I tweaked it by using almond milk and agave nectar.)
Baked Chicken Thighs (I used lemon instead of lime – amazing!)

I want to try these:

Flourless Squash Cookies
Every mug cake on the planet, but especially this one:
Raspberry Mug Cake (I absolutely cannot wait to make this!)

Feel free to try these recipes and tell me what you think.

0988I’m going to see this cutie pie in the middle of September. I cannot wait to see her! I miss my baby girl (who is most definitely not a baby). She is living life (and by living life, I mean working hard) in the big city of Chicago and we are certainly going to “hit the town” when I get there. She starts working on her next show, Hello, Dolly! at Drury Lane Theatre at the end of this month.



And last, but definitely, not least, I am taking a Wellness Seminar in Complementary and Alternative Medicine (CAM). We all know that CAM therapies were practiced as a way of healing in Eastern civilization long before Western medicine was ever in the picture. And, now that healthcare costs are constantly on the rise, people are looking more towards alternative medicine to help them deal with their health issues in a more cost-efficient way. Do you use alternative methods to heal? Such methods could be acupuncture, chiropractic, massage therapy, or spiritual. There are many, many other methods of complementary alternative medicine therapies. I am curious to know what you use.

I’ll keep in touch and you do as well. Bring it on September, we can do this!

Stay strong!

PS: I love this pic! It was taken at Drury Lane Theatre in Chicago in November 2012, when Allyson was doing the show Singin’ In the Rain. And, of course, she was wonderful. We are so proud.

Drury Lane