Archive | Valentine’s Day

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake

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How do you show the special someones in your life some special love on Valentine’s Day?

Do you have any traditions?

My only tradition is this:
My husband LOVES rice crispy/marshmallow treats and because I don’t like them at all, I NEVER make them.
Except for Valentine’s Day.
I have a little cake pan that has six heart shaped cups and I make him a
whole batch of marshmallow treats into heart shapes.
It’s a real treat and he loves it.
I wrap them each individually so they stay fresh and then I bag them up festively and he keeps them in his car and eats one {or more, I’d never know!} everyday until they’re gone.  It doesn’t sound very romantic but it’s one little thing that stays constant.  We celebrate in other ways, too, but that’s what I do every year just for him.

This year for dessert I’m making
Raw Chocolate Cheesecake.

It’s rich, nutritious, chocolaty, completely delicious, and just right for a special occasion ~
something we can eat together and share with others we love.
I like desserts that aren’t loaded with sugar and white flour and this is perfect.

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake ~ No grains, dairy, or sugar

Megan at The Detoxinista created this recipe that is grain-free, dairy-free, and doesn’t have any added sugar. And it has a secret ingredient that makes it moist and adds nutrition.  Can you guess what it is?

We like this Chocolate Cheesecake topped with a bit of heavy whipped cream so ours has dairy but the cheesecake itself doesn’t.  Neither one of us normally likes berries with chocolate but with this cheesecake we do.  The whipped cream and strawberry syrup compliments and tames the very, very chocolatiness {is that even a word?} of this rich dessert.

Just look how beautiful it looks.  It’s tastes just as good as it looks, too.
The crust is the right texture, giving it a cookie-crust feeling and taste, and the filling is silky smooth.

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake ~ No grains, dairy, or sugar

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake

Ingredients

    For the Crust
  • 2 cups raw pecans
  • 2 tablespoons coconut oil, melted and slightly cooled
  • 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/4 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1/8 teaspoon sea salt
  • For the Filling
  • 2 cups raw cashews
  • 1 medium zucchini, peeled and diced {about 1 cup}
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil, melted

Directions

    For the Crust
  1. Place the pecans in a food processor fitted with an S-blade, and grind them into fine meal.
  2. Add in the rest of the crust ingredients and process again until well combined.
  3. Line the bottom of an 8 or 9-inch spring-form pan with parchment paper or plastic wrap {I used a 9-inch}.
  4. Press the crust evenly into the bottom of the pan; place in the freezer to set while you prepare the filling.
  5. For the Filling
  6. In a high-powered blender or food processor, process the raw cashews until they are a fine powder.
  7. Add in the zucchini, cocoa powder, maple syrup, vanilla extract, and sea salt and blend again until a smooth and creamy batter is formed.
  8. Add in the melted coconut oil and blend again to fully incorporate the ingredients into a uniform filling.
  9. Pour the filling over the crust and place back into the freezer.
  10. Freeze for several hours before serving.
  11. For Serving
  12. For the best texture, serve directly from the freezer.
  13. Top with whipped cream and strawberry syrup, if desired.

Notes

I made the strawberry syrup using frozen strawberries because I didn't have any fresh. I partially thawed them then put them in my electric food chopper and chopped them until it was almost a puree, but not quite ~ there were still very small pieces of berries in the syrup. Then I just allowed it to completely thaw to room temperature for serving. Refrigerate any leftover syrup.

This cheesecake will become quite soft if left out at room temperature, so be sure to keep it chilled.

http://www.abrightandbeautifullife.com/raw-chocolate-cheesecake/

Raw Chocolate Cheesecake ~ No grains, dairy, or sugar

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Adorable Heart Bookmarks

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I know it is really close to Valentine’s Day and most of us are about finished thinking about heart-related projects and moving on to spring things, but I saw these adorable and easy felt heart bookmarks {here} last week and I couldn’t resist making some.

Adorable Heart Bookmarks
The church I belong to has a women’s organization in which each woman {coupled with another woman} visits 2 or 3 assigned women each month and I have been trying to think of something that I could take to each of them that doesn’t include chocolate or other sweets.  So when I saw these I thought they would be perfect.  Even for a non-reader they make a welcomed gift because who doesn’t have at least some kind of a book or cookbook or scripture that it would be useful in?  And they are so easy to make.  Each one took about fifteen minutes and I was able to use scraps of felt and ribbon that I had tucked away in my crafty corner.

Here is what you’ll need:

:: felt scraps ~ red, white, pink
:: buttons
:: white embroidery floss
:: embroidery needle
:: ribbon – cut 9-1/2 inches for each bookmark
:: hot glue gun or all purpose glue

Here is what you’ll need to do:

1. Cut out hearts in felt in the colors and sizes you will want to use.  I used three different sizes and I’ll call them small, medium, and large.  For each bookmark you will need two large, two medium, and one small.  {If you would like my heart patterns leave me a comment and I will email them to you.  Otherwise, just freehand or trace around cookie cutters.}
2. Using the embroidery floss, all 6 strands, run a stitch around the front side of one of the large hearts and then sew on a button if you are using one.  See the above photo.

IMG_5161

This is how the back of the stitched heart will look.

3. Glue the ribbon to the back side of the large heart you just stitched.
4. Glue another large heart to the backside of the heart you are working on to give it a finished look.

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This is how the back of the large heart will look.

5. Glue a small heart onto a medium sized heart.
6. Glue the other end of the ribbon to the back of the medium sized heart.
7. Glue another medium heart to the backside of the medium heart you are working on to finish it off.

Adorable Heart Bookmarks

This is how the finished bookmark will look.  Cute, huh?

Adorable Heart Bookmarks

I think I’ll even make a few more for friends that have February birthdays.

What about you?
Is there someone you could make some of these cute bookmarks for?

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Felt Heart Valentine Wreath

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I saw the idea for this wreath last year on Pinterest.  It was only this partial picture but I thought it looked like it had potential for being really cute so I printed it out.  There isn’t a source on the page so I can’t reference back to whomever’s idea it was (sorry).  If anyone out there can claim it I will surely give you credit.

pinterest felt valentine wreath

This year I pulled out the picture and decided to get busy recreating it.  Here it is hanging on my kitchen hutch:

Felt Heart Valentine Wreath

This is the first time I’ve made a wreath wrapped with yarn so it’s not as flat and smooth a some I’ve seen, but I double-wrapped over most of it and I do like the thick look that double-wrapping gives it.  It was so super simple and inexpensive to make and it looks just darling hanging there on my hutch.  I was actually going to make a 12 inch wreath but I cut out the hearts first and when I placed them on the 12 inch to see how it would look I decided that the hearts were too small for that size of a wreath.  So I went with a 10 inch and it’s perfect. Some people might think it’s a little on the small side for a front door wreath but I tried it on my front door under the windows (I have three windows on my front door) and it looked just fine.  It’s a no-sew project (unless you do a little sewing on the buttons and stitch around a heart or two) and it goes together in about one hour.  So, let’s get started.

IMG_4717-001

Here’s what you’ll need:
:: yarn ~ white or off white
:: felt ~ white or off white, pink, red
(I used wool felt because that’s what I had on hand.  Craft felt will work just fine.)
:: a few assorted buttons
:: one foam wreath
:: scissors
:: glue gun or all-purpose glue
:: needle and thread (optional)
:: ribbon (or something else) for hanging

Here’s what you’ll need to do:
1. Cut out an assortment of hearts in the three different colors of felt in two or three different sizes.
2. Glue the end of yarn to the back of the wreath form and then start wrapping
the form all the way around until you have it covered the way you like it.
3. Glue down the final end of yard on the back of the wreath, trying to blend it in with the rest of the yarn.
4. Arrange the hearts on the wreath in a layout that looks good to you.
5. Stitch around a heart or two, and use thread to sew the buttons on to individual hearts (if desired).
6. Start gluing those cute little hearts on.  (I started at the top and just worked my way down.)
7. Cut a piece of ribbon (or whatever else you choose) and loop it around the wreath and glue
the ends of the ribbon together to make it look like a solid loop.

Felt Heart Valentine Wreath

And that’s it.
You should now have a very cute Valentine wreath.
Send me pictures if you make one.  I would love to see what you come up with.

This wreath was featured on:
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Create.Craft.Love.

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I Adore Wreaths. Do You?

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I just adore wreaths.  For me, one word describes a wreath.  Hello.  I love them hanging on front doors and hutches and above beds and in bathrooms and in windows and on gates.  Like I said, I adore wreaths.

Do any of my nearby friends out there want to get together with me and make a new one?  If you do, leave me a comment on this page or a message on Facebook.  I love making them ~ well, I’ve only made a few, but it was so much fun. There’s nothing quite like seeing my own creation displayed in my home.  It’s like it’s smiling back at me and cheering up my day.

February is only a little over a week away and for all of us that want to make a new wreath, we better get on the ball. I did a Pinterest search for a collection of wreaths that I like and thought that maybe you will, too.  Take a look.  Click on the photos to get more information ~ some even have tutorials. Most of them look pretty easy to make, so if we’re wanting to create a new wreath, hopefully these will inspire us and give us some good ideas.

Valentine's Wreath

#1 Felt and Burlap Flower Valentine Wreath by Rose Petal Pretties via Etsy

Valentine's Wreath

#2 Felt and Yarn Love Wreath by The Bakers Daughter via Etsy

Valentine's Wreath

 #3 Fabric Flower Valentine Wreath tutorial by Sew much ado

Valentine's Wreath

 #4 Valentine Wreath tutorial by sweet something designs

Valentine's Wreath

#5 Button Heart by Sweet Meas via Etsy

Valentine's Wreath

 #6 Red Wool Valentine Wreath tutorial by Ms. Smartie Pants

Valentine's Wreath

 #7 Valentine Spring Winter Lux Wooden Heart Wreath by PetalsNPicks via Etsy

Valentine's Wreath

 #8 Dried English Lavender Heart Wreath by paulajeansgarden via Etsy

Valentine's Wreath
#9 The Kissing Wreath – Valentine’s Day Wreath by twoinspireyou via Etsy

Valentine's Wreaths 22

Well, what do you think?  Which wreaths do you like?  Or love?  Are you inspired?  Let me know.

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