faith, freedom, food

Tag: #blogger

“I Don’t Know How to Believe in God”

“I Don’t Know How to Believe in God”

Happy Wednesday my friends! A couple weekends ago, one of the last weekends of August, marked big changes in my life: it was the last weekend before Johnny moves to Winnipeg for the last time EVER, timed perfectly with our engagement party, hosted by one […]

When Life Isn’t a Story

When Life Isn’t a Story

…I have learned that I struggle. I know that God knows that I love a good story. A self-titled (and, now, professionally titled) writer since I was eight years old, I see everything in life in stories. A good storyline complete with metaphors and compelling […]

The Almond Butter Lesson (From a Recovered Anorexia-Sufferer)

The Almond Butter Lesson (From a Recovered Anorexia-Sufferer)

If you know me in real life, you know that I absolutely adore nut butters.

And if you’ve been in my kitchen in real life, you know that on a whole new level. I almost always have more than one type of nut or seed butter open and ready to spoon from or top with, from flavoured peanut butters to cashew, almond, and sunflower seed butter.

I also always buy nuts-only butters– ie., the only ingredient you’ll find in these jars is the nut itself. I make this decision both according to my taste buds, which are partial to the unsweetened, raw nuttiness of the one-ingredient varieties, and health reasons, as the other ingredients added to many popular nut butters not only deter their flavour in my opinion, but are usually pure junk.

So, the other day, when I realized that the almond butter I bought from my usual brand was a variety I don’t usually buy that contained palm oil and organic cane sugar in addition to almonds, I was annoyed at myself for having a bit of a freakout. I felt stupid for having made such a “careless mistake.”

Luckily, my thoughts rambled, I caught it before I’ve opened the jar. I’ll have to dig up the receipt and exchange it.

It didn’t take too long for me to stop dead in my thoughts, and question them.

Did I hate the taste of sugary almond butter? Absolutely not. It was a close second taste-wise to unsweetened almond butter. So, would a version of Cassie that had not been tainted by an eating disorder be thinking about taking a bus ride back to the grocery store to exchange sweetened almond butter with palm oil for unsweetened… or would that version of Cassie not have even noticed?

It is these kind of thoughts that I am grateful for in their opportunity to take captive and bring to Christ. If I HATED sugary almond butter, that may have been a reason to return it. But I think I can safely say that no seasoned nut-butter-lover would turn down a jar of ANY variety. So, what did I proceed to do? Grab the nearest nut-butter-dipping vehicle– on this particular day, a gala apple–, dunk a slice of it into the sugary almond butter, sprinkle-sprinkle some cinnamon and sea salt, and call it a snack well done.

Blackberry Crumble

Blackberry Crumble

In case you didn’t know, I tasted the most amazing food in the world a couple weeks ago. An avid foodie– and, more importantly, an avid peanut butter lover– I was so intrigued when I first noticed Salted Caramel Peanut Butter (sugar free, whole foods, […]

How I Increased My Blog Traffic By Thousands in a Matter of Months

How I Increased My Blog Traffic By Thousands in a Matter of Months

This post contains some affiliate links. All opinions are my own and are completely honest and candid. Ah, the world of blog hosting. When I started the whole blogging thing back in 2015, I really just wanted to share my writing with anyone that might […]

3 Engaged Girls, One House

3 Engaged Girls, One House

It is only just hitting me that in a matter of weeks, the girls I have lived with for the past three years and I will never live together again.

In fact, each of us will be transitioning to living with– a man— for the rest of our lives.

Yes– my university living experience was probably not like most, particularly at my secular school in southwestern Ontario, Wilfrid Laurier. I met Maddie and Mary in my first year of university, as they were colleagues in my smaaaalll program, Christian Studies. We hit it off instantly as friends, and soon became as close as sisters.

From left to right: Maddie, me, Autumn, Beth, and Mary.

We found a student apartment to live in together in second year with two other girls. Pictured above is our third-year crew, all of us having met in Christian Studies classes. ALL of the girls in this photo are engaged now, with the exception of Beth, who was married to her hubby in August 2018, a wedding we were so honoured to attend.

Now, these girls make up my bridal party… and I make up theirs. Mary marries her man in October, Johnny & I in January, and Maddie in June 2020. Our men proposed months apart, but many of the preparations for the weddings have taken place in our little student living situation. With either a bridesmaid dress or a wedding gift or a decor piece arriving to the front porch seemingly every week, it’s no wonder people have asked me what it’s like to “share the spotlight” with my best friends in the same house.

And here’s the answer: I wouldn’t have it any other way, because the only spotlight in these relationships is on Jesus Christ.

I feel blessed beyond words, in fact, that I have had the opportunity to live with these two women who know that their weddings are about the lifelong marriage and not the day itself. Who have hearts that want their relationships to reflect and glorify God rather than lift up themselves. And it is because of these very mindsets, the very presence of God, that we have approached each other, and being in each other’s wedding parties while also being brides, with nothing but love, grace, equality, compassion, and joy.

Also pictured here is Bethany, another one of my bridesmaids and beautiful friend from Christian Studies.

HE is why it’s been nothing but fun. HE is why I have been able to give being a bridesmaid, maid of honour, and bride– all at once, and while LIVING with the girls– the attention each role deserves. HE is the reason for it all, and to Him I give all the glory.

And I saw that all toil and all achievement spring from one person’s envy of another. This too is meaningless, a chasing after the wind.

ECCLESIASTES 4:4

Childhood Chicken Fried Rice

Childhood Chicken Fried Rice

Raise your hand if you were a picky eater as a kid. (I’m raising my hand). I was the PICKIEST of the picky. I could count the number of foods I was happy eating on both hands (well, both hands if you’ll allow me to […]

Curated KW: Interviewing the Girls Behind the Gram

Curated KW: Interviewing the Girls Behind the Gram

When I first stumbled upon Curated KW, I was so intrigued. Quite honestly, I wanted to WORK for the business, be a part of it in some way. I assumed, given the obvious effort and passion displayed in this initiative to help Waterloo Regioners understand […]

NutriBullet Apple Cauliflower Soup

NutriBullet Apple Cauliflower Soup

Are you a soup person? I’ve never been much of one myself.

Growing up, I did love Nestle Chicken Noodle, and my mom’s homemade chilli was to die for. But creamy, one-colour purees? Is that baby food or potato chowder, ya know what I’m saying?

As much as you wouldn’t catch me ordering a creamy soup at a restaurant, you will catch me eating one on my wedding day.

Photo courtesy of Jono & Laynie

Ok, I’m already drooling just thinking about it.

A few months ago, Johnny and I took my best friend and her boyfriend to join us for our menu tasting at our wedding venue, The Cambridge Mill. The tasting featured all of the options we had to pick from for the appetizer, entree, and dessert on our wedding day… and this tasting stands as one of my favourite days ever. We had so much fun sampling all of the wines, salads, soups, meat selections… the boys, still having enough room, even snuck to the lobby to try the taco bar!

All we could say: we could choose any of the options and be absolutely thrilled with the food. I’m so excited to eat it again!

If you haven’t guessed it, we chose a soup for our appetizer. Celery Root and Apple Puree with Honey Creme Fraiche and Roasted Chestnut, the 10/10 taste of this soup blew each of us away. While the colour is underwhelming, and there was only so much that could be done to amplify its presentation, the creamy, sweet taste was out of this world, and we all joked that it would be a great surprise for our guests.

Thrilled with how much Johnny had enjoyed something made of celery, and loving it myself, I set out to try to recreate the soup with one of my favourite kitchen applications, my NutriBullet RX’s 7-minute heating cycle, or “SouperBlast.”

I was thrilled with the way this turned out! I’m allergic to dairy, so I made mine with almond milk, but you could most definitely use a dairy milk or cream instead. I’m sure butter would also be delicious instead of olive oil. And feel free to play with the seasonings!

I also enjoyed it drizzled over sunny-side-up fried eggs on toast. Soooo good.

If you try this, let me know in the comments below! It’s not necessarily 5-star-restaurant worthy… but it satisfied by craving for the best soup ever, so that’s not too shabby.

The Power of a Friend Like Alicia: Three Things To Absolutely Always Be Doing, Everyday Period.

The Power of a Friend Like Alicia: Three Things To Absolutely Always Be Doing, Everyday Period.

The buzz of my alarm greeted my ears this morning at 5:30AM, and I found myself instantly missing waking up with the sunrise time on the daily for work. As I have transitioned out of a three-and-a-half-year period of working at coffee shops just this […]