Homemade Blueberry & Apple Fruit Roll Ups #RealFood

Looking for something healthy & fun to add to the kids lunches?  Skip the sugar-packed and chemical laden store bought treats and make your own.  My homemade Blueberry & Apple Fruit Roll Ups are a hit with the kids, super easy to make & have only 4 ingredients!!

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Homemade Blueberry & Apple Fruit Roll Ups

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup Apple Sauce
  • 2 cups Blueberries (fresh or frozen)
  • 1 tsp Pure Vanilla
  • 2 tsp Maple Syrup

Instructions: 

Place all the ingredients in your food processor and blend until smooth. My Vitamix makes short work of the berries and creates a gorgeous smooth sauce.

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Divide the mixture on to 2 fruit leather sheets for your dehydrator and spread it out so you have a nice even layer across the entire sheet.  I have a Nesco FD-80 dehydrator that works perfectly for these yummy treats.  Set your dehydrator to 135 degrees and walk away.  The fruit roll ups will take anywhere from 5-9 hours depending on how wet your mixture is.  You'll know when they are ready when there are no sticky spots left on your fruit roll ups.

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Remove from trays and slice into strips!  And that's it.  They will keep in an air tight container for a week or two.  If they last that long!

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My Blueberry & Apple Fruit Roll Ups are perfect for lunches but also make great on the go snacks; keep a few in your bag for snack emergencies!

Wake Up Energized with 3 Simple Steps

If you're like most people, you don't feel terribly bright-eyed and bushy-tailed when your alarm goes off.  Sometimes I  feel ready to take on the world, but most mornings, after a less than restful sleep, I find myself reaching for the coffee pot in hopes of feeling somewhat awake.  But I have discovered a few easy things to keep me feeling energized without the caffeine.  Try these 3 things each morning and I'm certain you'll be skipping the coffee and getting your groove on in no time!

Wake Up Energized with 3 Simple Steps

Yoga in Bed - don't jump out of bed and run to the shower. Instead take just a couple minutes to allow your body and mind to slowly wake up and get ready for your day.  Try some very simple yoga moves right in your bed to get your blood flowing and awaken your body & spirit.

Warm Lemon Water - before reaching for your coffee or tea, start your day with a large glass of warm lemon water.  Why? Well, firstly, it's a natural energizer! It hydrates and oxygenates and helps nourish your brain and nerve cells with it's potassium content. Lemon water taken early in the morning helps flush out toxins from your body.  The citric acid helps maximize enzyme function, which stimulates the liver and aids in detoxification.  Need more reasons to add this drink to your daily routine? Check out more benefits HERE.

Bite An Apple - yes, you remember your Mother saying: 'an apple a day....' Well, there's some truth to that. The benefits of eating an apple are pretty awesome. It contains fructose which is a natural sugar that can wake you up naturally and help keep you going. They're full of fiber and that energy boost is long and slow so it won't give you a big crash, like your cup of coffee.  They are perfect for a quick breakfast or an on the go boost!

So now your set to tackle your day; here's to feeling awake and awesome!
Wake up and BE AWESOME!!!!!!!!!

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Tip Tuesday: DIY Apple Crumble Face Scrub

Recently I had the pleasure of collaborating with Michell Pino from Skana Spa in upstate New York for this latest DIY installment. Think of cool, crisp days, leaves falling and the smell of grandma's baking.

In celebration of the start of Fall, treat your self to a little decadence at home with our Apple Crumble Face Scrub.

Apple Crumble Face Scrub

Ingredients:

1/2 of an apple (well mashed, with skin, no core or seeds, or unsweetened applesauce would work too)
1/3 cup old-fashioned oats
1 tablespoon honey
2 teaspoons olive oil (you could also use sweet almond oil or melted coconut oil)
pinch of cinnamon

Instructions:

Leave the paste for 5 minutes in the bowl until oatmeal becomes soft and then gently (many people scrub a little to aggressively which can irritate skin) exfoliate your face massaging it for 1 or 2  minutes. Rinse with warm then cold water.  And voila!  A homemade, healthy face scrub that smells divine and tastes delicious!

I love incorporating oatmeal as its soothing to the skin and acts as an inflammatory. I also like it because it works well for a variety of skin types and does not cause irritation. The honey has astringent properties and also helps increase your skins healing abilities. The apple has a large quantity of anti-oxidants so it helps to keep your skin looking younger.  It also helps to balance the oil production and is great for hydrating.

Trying this scrub, I found it to be very soothing and hydrating.  My skin felt toned and moisturized and my pores and wrinkles (shhh...don't tell anyone) seemed to be minimized.  It is a little messy, so make sure you do it over the sink.  The recipe made enough for both me and my hubby to give ourselves a mini facial.

Before and After
Looking for more Autumn inspired beauty treatments?  Visit Skana Spa and check out their always tantalizing seasonal Spa offerings.


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Our Autumn Apple Picking Adventure

To celebrate the arrival of Fall, I thought it would be only fitting to take the family apple picking.  And what luck, there's an adorable Dwarf Apple Tree Farm only 5 minutes from our house.  It turned out to be a perfect morning; the rain cleared up and the air was wonderfully cool and crisp. 

The orchard has had a few tough years since we moved into the neighbourhood.  In 2009 there was a devastating hail storm in the spring which destroyed all the apple blossoms.  And then in 2012 we had a freak warm spell in March which caused all the trees to blossom too soon.  It was promptly followed by a cruel frost which destroyed the blooms and again no apples.  This year was somewhat better, but yet again a wacky hail storm in June damaged the apples.  Luckily for us there was still a crop this year and they were offering them at a discount as the apples weren't perfect.  Bonus!  And really, who cares if they look a little funky when you're making a crumble or applesauce.

We pulled on our rubber boots and headed out to the orchard to fill our 20lb bag.  Picking your own apples is soothing to the soul and calming to the mind.  And what a fantastic way to teach the kids where our food comes from. Stella dashed from tree to tree trying to find the most perfect apple while Alice rode along contently in her stroller chewing on a MacIntosh.















Red Delicious, Northern Spy, Jona Gold, Macintosh, Mutsu and Golden Delicious, Empire, Spartan, Royal Gala and Ida Red - we picked them all.
                                                                                              Fresh fall air and cloudy skies made for a wonderful morning gathering sweet fruit to fill our pantry. Can't wait to start on some baking adventures!



And stay tuned for an extra special Fall DIY beauty treatment on Tuesday.  So good you'll want to eat it!
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