October 2015 Archive

DIY Glam Pumpkins

These glam DIY pumpkins make the perfect decoration for fall! The best part is, no one else will have a pumpkin like these unique little beauties!

Glam Pumpkins | Haute & Healthy Living

Call me crazy, but I’ve never really been much of a fan of Halloween. In my mind, it’s always been such a dark time of year.

I’m all about balance and everything, but the idea of having a holiday strictly devoted to stuffing kids with endless amounts of candy doesn’t exactly go along with what I preach day after day. And as much as I love decorating, the dark and spooky Halloween decorations to me look a bit corny.

I’m not one to string skeletons and ghosts across my front lawn.

Despite not really being into Halloween, I do love pumpkins and all the different things you can do with them.

Lately, I’ve been scouring Pinterest and have been getting tons of pumpkin decorating inspiration.

Glam Pumpkins | Haute & Healthy Living

Man, some people are so creative!

If you should know one thing about me, it’s that I LOVE to glam up anything and everything.

I am the queen of bling.

Glam Pumpkins | Haute & Healthy Living

My favourite accessories are blingy necklaces, bracelets and earrings. I’ve often had people ask me if I’m going somewhere fancy.

My response?

Nope! It’s just my everyday style.

When it comes to decorating, I also love shiny and sparkly things.

Glam Pumpkins | Haute & Healthy Living

I really wanted to try doing something different with my pumpkins this year beyond just plopping them by the front door.

This year, I wanted some glam pumpkins.

Glam Pumpkins | Haute & Healthy Living

I was wandering around Michael’s one day (my ultimate place to go when I’m looking for inspiration) and I found these pretty embellishments. I wasn’t really searching for them, they were just there suddenly. I knew I could find a purpose for them, so I picked them up.

I kept thinking about my pumpkin idea, so I went to the dollar store to see if I could find some cheap plastic pumpkins that I could makeover. In less than 5 minutes, I found the perfect pumpkins.

Everything was coming together.

Next I bought some spray paint. I had a vision of creating some silver and pearl white pumpkins with sparkly silver stems.

Glam Pumpkins | Haute & Healthy Living

I suddenly knew exactly what I was going to do with my embellishments.

Bling up my pumpkins!

And this was the result.

Glam Pumpkins | Haute & Healthy Living

Gorgeous, right?!

Here’s what you need:

  • Three plastic pumpkins (or more!)
  • Silver spray paint
  • White spray paint
  • Silver glitter spray paint
  • Pretty embellishments
  • Pretty sparkly letters
  • Masking tape
  • Plastic grocery bags

Instructions:

Cover the stems of the pumpkins with tape to protect them. Spray one pumpkin with white spray paint and the others with silver spray paint. Allow to dry. They may need a couple of coats of paint, depending on the type of spray paint you buy.

Once fully dry, poke a hole in a plastic grocery bag and stick the stem of the pumpkin through it. The grocery bag will protect the rest of the pumpkin while you’re spraying the stem. Spray the stem of the pumpkin with the silver sparkly spray paint. It’s okay if some of the glitter gets on top of the pumpkin. Continue until you’ve sprayed all the stems of the pumpkins. You may need a couple of coats of sparkly spray paint.

Once fully dry, stick the embellishments on the pumpkins. The embellishments that I purchased had an adhesive on the back already, so all that I had to do was stick it on. You can also use some sparkly sticker letters to write on the pumpkins, if desired.

Enjoy these pretty pumpkins!

Elysia, XOXO
Grape, Gouda & Arugula Skewers

These little appetizers are almost too pretty to eat! Plus they’re super easy to make and offer a healthy option with less than 15 calories per skewer! The perfect little autumn appetizers!

Grape, Gouda & Arugula Skewers | Haute & Healthy Living

 

Man, it feels SO good to sit down!

I decided to take this week off from work to catch up on some blogging stuff. Well, actually I worked yesterday, so technically I didn’t take the WHOLE week off, but you gotta do what you gotta do!

As much as it was supposed to be my vacation week, it feels like I’ve been running around like a crazy person!

Why does that always seem to happen?!

My main goals this week were to get in some good solid workouts (after my three Thanksgiving dinners this past weekend, I needed it)!

I also wanted to finish up some DIY projects, test out and shoot some new recipes, put up some new blog posts….and maybe chill out for a second?

Is that too much to ask?

I’m starting to think that I’m basically incapable of chilling out for an extended period of time.

It’s always go go go.

A part of me really likes the busy-ness and I think I bring a lot of it on myself. But boy, does it feel good to chill out for a bit.

So you get the point. Life is busy.

On busy days, one thing I really enjoy are easy, no brainer recipes.

Grape, Gouda & Arugula Skewers | Haute & Healthy Living

I’ve been relying on these types of recipes a lot lately, for work and at home.

My latest creation that I tried out on customers last week are these gorgeous little Grape, Gouda & Arugula Skewers.

Don’t those pretty little skewers just look like fall to you?

Grape, Gouda & Arugula Skewers | Haute & Healthy Living

The little arugula pieces remind me of fall leaves.

And the combination of flavours are perfect together!

A pop of sweetness from the grapes, a nice cube of cheese, and some peppery arugula.

Plus, it’s a healthy combo too!

HUGE BONUS.

Grape, Gouda & Arugula Skewers | Haute & Healthy Living

An appetizer that has a dash of antioxidants, calcium, protein, fibre and potassium?

Can’t complain about that!

Now I know that not everyone likes arugula, but when I tested it out, even arugula haters enjoyed this recipe!

So I dare you to give it a shot!

Serve it up for a party, get together, or even just a snack!

A classy snack that is ;)

Hope you enjoy this pretty little appetizer!

Grape, Gouda & Arugula Skewers

Yield: Makes 20 skewers

Ingredients

  • 20 grapes
  • 40 leaves baby arugula
  • 2 oz gouda cheese cut into large cubes
  • 20 toothpicks

Instructions

  1. Wash grapes and arugula. Skewer grapes, arugula and Gouda cheese onto toothpicks. Enjoy!

Inspired by Dairy Farmers of Canada

Nutrients per serving:

Servings: 20 • Calories: 14 • Fat: 1 g • Carbohydrates: 1 g • Fibre: 0 g • Protein: 1 g • Sugar: 1 g • Sodium: 21 mg • Cholesterol: 2 mg

Elysia, XOXO
DIY Distressed Ladder Shelf

This DIY ladder shelf is super easy to make and creates a gorgeous rustic feature for any room. The perfect place to showcase your favourite decorative pieces! 

Living Room Shot 7

Lately Matt and I have been on a roll when it comes to interior decorating. Who would’ve thought that decorating a house could be so addictive?!

I honestly never realized that I had such a love for decorating until Matt bought his new house this past March.

I have seriously fallen in LOVE.

We’ve been tackling the rooms one by one, and I’m super excited about the projects we’ve been working on!

We happened to be looking around in one of our favourite boutiques one weekend, where they have beautiful home décor items, just to get some inspiration. We saw these old rustic ladders that were painted and used as shelves. They were so cool! But what was not so cool was the price. $250!!!

Not quite what we were looking to spend.

But we couldn’t stop thinking about this ladder shelf! Matt had the perfect spot for it in the corner of his living room right next to the couch. We kept thinking it would be sooo perfect there!

DIY Distressed Ladder Shelf | Haute & Healthy Living

We kept browsing around the store and started whispering to each other, “We could totally make a shelf ladder like that!”

So the next day, we set out on a journey to a huge antique market that runs all day Sunday.

On a mission to find an old ladder that we could transform.

In less than 5 minutes, we found the PERFECT ladder for $20, almost identical to the ladder we saw in the store that was $250.

We got to work and sanded it down in the garage, just enough that the paint would go on smoothly. We still wanted it to have a rustic appearance.

Next we decided to paint it white, because…well, I have an obsession with white. It’s just so clean looking.

We only put on one coat because, as I previously mentioned, we wanted it to have the rustic not-so-perfect look.

Once it was dry, we took some rough sandpaper and sanded it down wherever we wanted it to look distressed, mostly focusing on the edges.

Next, we decorated it to fit the theme of the living room. A candle. A decorative ball. Some old books. And a throw blanket.

Living Room Shot 8

FYI – ladder shelves make a great place to drape a comfy throw. That was Matt’s brilliant idea. I give him full credit.

And POOF, just like that, we had a ladder shelf for less than $30! And we love it because it adds such a unique touch to the room.

So if you want to create your own ladder shelf, here’s what you need:

  • A wooden ladder (antique markets usually have lots of unique ladders!)
  • Sandpaper
  • White paint with an egg shell finish (or whatever colour you prefer)
  • Decorative objects for the shelf

The beauty of this shelf is that it’s unique and no one will ever have one exactly like it!

Enjoy!!

Elysia, XOXO
Pumpkin Spice Pancakes with Maple Apple Topping

These healthy pumpkin pancakes are loaded with flavours of the fall — apples, pumpkin pie, and maple syrup! Plus, they’re a great source of fibre and protein! The perfect way to kick off the fall season!

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes with Maple Apple Topping | Haute & Healthy Living

A few weeks ago, I bought the cutest little pumpkins. I couldn’t resist. They were so adorable.

They’re sitting on a little white tray in my kitchen all in a row. Each morning that I go into the kitchen and see my little pumpkins, I get so inspired to whip up something pumpkin-y and delicious.

I’m pretty sure that I previously revealed to you my love for pancakes. If not, I LOVE pancakes. It’s not usual for me to have pancakes for dinner at least a couple times per week, since usually I don’t have time to make them in the morning.

Now as weird as this might sound, wherever possible, I like to sneak vegetables into my pancakes to provide a dose of extra nutrients, fibre and moisture.

Now you might be thinking, “This girl is weird. She puts vegetables in her pancakes.”

But it’s not what you’re thinking.

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes with Maple Apple Topping | Haute & Healthy Living

I don’t put cucumbers, mushrooms, tomatoes, or anything like that in my pancakes.

That WOULD be weird.

But I HAVE experimented with shredded carrots, zucchini, and even spinach!

The spinach turned the pancakes a funky green colour, which wasn’t super appetizing. I guess green pancakes could kind of be like a green smoothie?? Or like Dr. Suess’ green eggs and ham??

Mmmmmm….maybe not.

Anyways, carrot pancakes have been my fave so far, so I thought pumpkin pancakes would be pretty awesome too.

And, guess what?

I was right.

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes with Maple Apple Topping | Haute & Healthy Living

Pumpkin adds a touch of sweetness to the batter in addition to moisture and volume. So the result is fluffy pancakes that are not DRY. They might be a tad orange as well, but I’m alright with that. That to me just reinforces the fact that they’re a great source of vitamin A!

Huge nutrition nerd, right?

Gotta make it healthy!

If you look beyond the orange pigment, you’ll realize that the taste is beautifully complimented with pumpkin pie spice and cinnamon.

AND let’s not forget that delicious maple and apple topping. It just tastes like autumn on a plate!

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes with Maple Apple Topping | Haute & Healthy Living

I found with the apple topping, I didn’t even need any extra maple syrup. It added a nice touch of sweetness without being over the top.

So if you’re looking for a way to use up that pumpkin, these pancakes make a great fall breakfast (or dinner ;)

Pumpkin Spice Pancakes with Maple Apple Topping

Yield: Makes approximately 24 pancakes (6 servings)

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 cups unsweetened almond milk (or preferred milk)
  • 1 cup pure pumpkin puree
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 tbsp apple sauce
  • 1 tbsp 100% pure maple syrup
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 cups oat flour*
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 tsp ground pumpkin pie spice
  • 1/8 tsp sea salt
  • Olive oil cooking spray
  • TOPPING:
  • 1 large apple, cut into 1/4-inch cubes
  • 1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tbsp pure maple syrup
  • *You can make oat flour by blending oats in a blender until a fine flour consistency is formed.

Instructions

  1. In a large bowl, whisk together milk, pumpkin, eggs, apple sauce, maple syrup and vanilla.
  2. In a medium bowl, whisk flour, baking powder, cinnamon, baking soda, pumpkin pie spice and salt. Add to pumpkin mixture and stir until just combined; set aside.
  3. In a small bowl, toss together apples and cinnamon. Mist a medium pot with cooking spray and heat on medium. Add apple mixture to pot and increase heat to medium-high. Add 1/2 cup water and 1 tbsp maple syrup; cover and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to a simmer and cook until apples soften and liquid is reduced by half, about 5 minutes.
  4. Meanwhile, mist a large nonstick skillet or griddle with cooking spray and heat on medium. Working in batches, add batter to skillet in 1/4 cup portions, leaving 1 inch between each. Cook until bubbles form around edges, about 3 minutes. Flip and cook until golden brown, about 2 more minutes. To serve, garnish pancakes with topping.

Nutrients per serving:

Servings: 6 • Calories: 254 • Fat: 6 g • Carbohydrates: 40 g • Fibre: 6 g • Protein: 11 g • Sugar: 9 g • Sodium: 491 mg • Cholesterol: 106 mg

Elysia, XOXO