Hello friends. If you are like me, between work and preparing for the holidays, you have a busy week ahead of you. I have been making my list and checking it twice. My goal is to check everything off of that not-so-little list by the end of the week. Our family festivities start this Saturday and cruise right along through Christmas day. This year, we only have one family party per day, so we will not have to rush from place to place. I am looking forward to spending quality time with all sides of our families! My arsenal for the busy week ahead is pre-planned meals, carved-out time for exercise, and adequate sleep. Ok, ok, you can add coffee to that list too. I honestly don't even know how people survive without coffee. My coffee pot is pre-set so it ready before I even get out of bed. Ah, the simple things in life.
Getting enough sleep is key for feeling energized, keeping hunger at bay, and keeping a smile on your face! Sleep seems like an easy thing to skimp on when your to-do list is a mile long, but resist the urge! You will feel so refreshed and ready to take on the day when you log enough hours in bed. It is equally important to carve out time for exercise. This time of year is stressful, and exercise is a huge stress-buster. Not to mention, it is easy to overeat when there are Christmas cookies calling your name. Getting a sweat on will help you melt away calories, decrease your stress, and leave you will feel-good chemicals circulating through your body. Consider good health a Christmas present to yourself that keeps on giving.
Now, ain't nobody got time to be making five-star meals the week before Christmas! If you do, what do you do for living, and how to I get your job??? This week, focus on healthy, easy meals and snacks. One of my favorite on-the-go breakfasts is Greek yogurt, fresh berries, and homemade granola. Homemade Cranberry Almond Granola is so easy and one batch will get your through the week! I made this recipe yesterday and it is what I will be eating all week for breakfast!
Cranberry Almond Granola
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/4 cup honey
1 tbsp coconut oil, melted or 1 tbsp of vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 1/2 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1/2 cup sliced or slivered almonds
1/2 cup dried cranberries
1. Heat oven to 300 degrees. Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
2. Combine brown sugar, honey, coconut oil, vanilla, salt, cinnamon in large mixing bowl.
Fold in old-fashioned rolled oats.
3. Spread into an even layer on parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake and stir occasionally
until the oats are toasted and the granola is dry, approximately 30 minutes.
4. Fold in cranberries and almonds; let cool. Store in an airtight container.
I hope Cranberry Almond Granola helps you get through this busy week! It will at least take the guesswork out of breakfast every morning! This recipe also makes a great gift. Put Cranberry Almond Granola in a mason jar or wrap it in a plastic; tie with a Christmas ribbon and create a hand-made card. Voila! A healthy gift will stand-out among the platters of Christmas cookies!
Have a great week everyone! Enjoy this busy week and make sure to slip in some exercise and an hour or two of extra zzz's!