Weekend Things...Friday Favorites Edition

Happy Weekend everyone! I can't believe we are already more than half-way through July. WHERE is summer going?  There are too many things on our summer bucket list that we haven't even done yet: farmer's market (heading there tomorrow morning), splash pad, more pool trips, waiting in line at Little Man Ice Cream, camping (not sure if this will actually happen or not)...among other things. I feel like we are running out of weekends, yikes! 

Since I haven't done a Weekend Things post in a bit, I thought I would switch it up and let you all know what we are loving here lately in the Larson house.  Here are some of our current favs in no particular order:

this little joy - fresh caprese salad

Fresh from the garden caprese salad! I am looking for any reason to eat all of our homegrown basil, and found the prettiest organic cherry tomatoes at Whole Foods this week. Combined with fresh buffalo mozzarella, a little olive oil and balsamic with ground pepper...heaven! So simple yet so delicious.

this little joy - whole foods love

And speaking of Whole Foods, no trip is complete for Reese without stealing some form of produce and devouring it right there in the cart. This week, she learned how to eat cherries and other pitted fruits, which is so awesome! She bites around it, and then digs it out with her fingers and screams YUCKY! and then throws it at me.  Every time. I'm glad I don't have to worry about her choking on pits now, but need to work on the throwing aspect, ha! We are loving all things pitted right now - cherries, peaches, plums, apricots...everything here in Colorado has been amazing.

this little joy - whole foods find

And another Whole Foods find - this Red Beet + Cabbage Kraut by Wildbrine is delicious (and on sale this week). Have you tried sauerkraut? I really enjoy this one - it has a mild flavor and might be a good option for those who don't normally go for kraut. It's a great thing to add into rotation in your diet - gluten-free and natural probiotics which are so good for your gut. I really enjoy it with grilled anything, chicken sausages, or just in a salad like so:

this little joy - friday favorites salad

This little salad bowl from lunch today randomly contained: fresh snap peas, leftover rotisserie chicken, shredded carrots, arugula, and kraut sprinkled with hemp seeds. I just dressed it with: a little sesame oil, coconut aminos, garlic, and rice vinegar. YUM. And makes me feel better about eating these all week:

this little joy - gluten free peanut butter chocolate chip cookies

Stop it. These cookies are simply the best. Gluten-free + vegan peanut butter chocolate chip cookies, oh my word. Even Nick says these are his favorite cookies that I bake, which is a huge thing because normally you say "vegan" and "gluten-free" in the same sentence and his eyes glaze over. I had a few month hiatus from these (probably during that time I made brownies on a weekly basis) but these are definitely back.  Paired with a cold glass of almond milk - amazing. Thank you Angela for creating these! Find the recipe here on Oh She Glows.

this little joy - friday favorites

Ok, and I am back on the protein powder train.  I'm a big believer in getting your nutrients from whole foods, but while I was recovering from labor and nursing, I felt like I couldn't get enough protein, ever.  So I started having a daily protein drink (just mixed with plain almond milk) with a snack during the day.  I have tried a TON of various plant and whey based protein powders, and I really enjoy the Vega brand. Unlike whey powders which are dairy-based protein, Vega is plant-based pea protein powder and actually tastes pretty delicious. It is low-glycemic (no added sugar) with just a touch of stevia (which I normally hate, but don't mind it at all in this). This one in particular has additional greens in it, so it tastes slightly different than the original version though - more earthy. But both are good! I usually wait until Whole Foods is running a sale on this brand, and the savings is usually $10 off! So worth keeping an eye on.

this little joy - friday favorites

And speaking of protein, we are loving Tolerant Organic Green Lentil Penne...my answer to getting Reese to eat more protein when she is boycotting meat. My friend introduced me to this, but I shied away because of the price (normally $9 for a small box at Whole Foods). However, I found this massive box (a three-pack) at Sam's Club - for $9! Score! I love that this pasta is made from one single ingredient - organic green lentils.  That is it! And I love that Reese loves it.  I have been making homemade basil pesto (again, what to do with all the basil around here?) and we have been mixing the penne with pesto, peas, and a little parmesan. Definitely toddler approved.

Hope you enjoyed a peak at some of our favorites around here lately! Tell me what is on your current favorites list? Or even better, what have you knocked off your summer bucket list that we need try?

Have a FAB weekend!

this little joy - big girl reese