Light Chocolate Cupcake Recipe

I am on a mission to not get sick!  I work at an elementary school now and half of the kids are sick and won't stop touching me/high fiving me.  I have been washing my hands like every ten minutes.  Or pretty much every time a kid touches me.  Today I had to go to cpr training and they only had five mannequins for a class of 20 to share.  And 6 of those people were coughing a ton and were sick and the only thing we were doing was taking an alcohol swab to clean the mouth that we had to blow in!  The teacher must be crazy if she thinks that I will put my mouth on something when just an alcohol swab was used and then share it with another sick person, ya right!  Especially since I just learned in microbiology that alcohol swabs don't do anything and that the rubbing action does more than the actual alcohol does.  Same with hand sanitizer.  So pretty much I didn't blow into the dummys mouth and people were looking at me.  I really don't care though, who knows what kind of bronchitis crap i could have caught from everyone else. That was my day.  On to the cupcakes.

I love cupcakes.  I wish that they were healthy.  I don't really make them that much because I don't love baking just eating.  Instead I go to the coffee shop, they have the best cupcakes.  A lot better than sprinkles in my opinion.  If you haven't been there you need to check it out.  It is right next to Joe's Farm grill.  I found a recipe for healthier cupcakes in Alicia Silverstone's book, "The Kind Diet."  I changed mine up a little bit from hers.

2/3 cup vanilla soy milk or vanilla coconut milk
1 tsp apple cider vinegar
2/3 cup agave
1/3 cup canola oil
2 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup all purpose flour
1/3 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp baking soda
pinch of salt

Fudge frosting:
1/2 cup earth balance butter
1/2 cup agave
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1/2 cup soy milk powder (I didn't use this but the recipe says if you use this your frosting will be thicker)

Preheat oven to 325 F
Combine the milk and vinegar in a medium bowl and set aside for five minutes then add the agave, oil, and vanilla and stir.  In a separate bowl combine the flours, baking powder, baking soda and salt.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry until it is completely mixed.

Bake for 18-22 minutes

Frosting directions:
after mixing all of the ingredients let sit in the fridge while the cupcakes bake.

If you make about 16 cupcakes it should be around 150 calories per cupcake.  I want to get a mini cupcake pan.  Mini cupcakes are the best.

West Nile Virus

The west nile virus is on the news a lot right now and I wanted to know the statistics of how many people were actually infected and where most of it was coming from.

About west nile virus:
The virus is transmitted through various species of mosquitos.  It can cause fever, headaches, fatigue, muscle pain or aches, malaise, nausea, vomiting and rash.  More severe cases are a neurologic disease when the central nervous system is affected.  West nile encephalitis causes inflammation of the brain and west nile meningitis causes inflammation of the meninges (protective membranes that cover the brain and spinal cord) or you can get west nile meningoencephalitis which causes inflammation of the brain and also the meninges surrounding it.

Statistics: according to the CDC (center of disease control)  from Jan 2012 as of August 21, 2012

total cases of west nile virus: 1,118 total deaths: 41

Arizona:  12 cases, 1 death
I looked up where most of these cases happened and they are all in Maricopa county!
California: 34 cases, 1 death
Utah: 0

highest states:
Texas: 537 cases, 19 deaths
298 of the 537 cases were neuroinvasive ( it affected their nervous system)
Oklahoma: 68 cases, 3 deaths
Mississippi: 79 cases, 1 death
Louisiana: 73 cases, 6 deaths
Michican: 30 cases, 1 death
South Dakota: 72 cases, 1 death

How to prevent:
Wear repellent.  The more you are outside the greater chance you have at getting bit.  Click here to find out more information on the west nile virus and to find out where most of the cases are happening in your state.

Pretty much if you live in Texas don't go outside!  Yikes.

shark attack deaths vs. cyclist deaths

I love watching shark week. I surfed all day last Monday and Tuesday in California and don't really think about sharks that much in the water.  I have seen one before in the water but just swam as fast as I could in.  It was in Hawaii when I was going to school/trying to be a pro surfer.  I looked up the stats about shark attacks because I know they are pretty uncommon.  I just try not to  think about sharks when I'm surfing because surfing is the funnest thing in the World!!!  

Here are the stats on sharks attacks:

Confirmed Unprovoked Shark Attacks, 1580–2011
United States
(Excluding Hawaii)
Pacific Islands / Oceania
(Excluding Hawaii)
South America105232011
Antilles and Bahamas67152010
Middle America56272011
New Zealand4782009
Unspecified / Open Ocean1472006
Source: -International Shark Attack File -Australian Shark Attack File —July 2012

Ok only 44 deaths from a shark attack since 1580!  I think I'll take my chances in the water.  On shark week it said that there have been 52 attacks in southern California from 2000-2010.

I wanted to compare shark attack deaths to cyclist deaths per year to show Jordan.  I guess I am screwed because I like to bike and surf haha oh well.

Stats on deaths from cyclist accidents in US:
Year   Deaths
2001  732 1.7
2002  665 1.5
2003  629 1.5
2004  727 1.7
2005  786 1.8
2006  772 1.8
2007  701 1.7
2008  718 1.9
2009  628 1.9
2010  618 1.9

So on average around 600-700 cyclists die each year just in the US from accidents.  And only 52 people have died since the 1500s from shark attacks.  CRAZY!  Hopefully my husband knows what he's doing.  I would definitely rather take my chances surfing over biking.

Enough depressing stuff.  On to my new favorite drink!  I am such a drink person.  I love making/trying new drinks.  This one is super easy and delicious!  It is inspired from true food kitchen.  We went there on our vacation, definitely overpriced food and it was just ok in my opinion.  They had a list of all natural drinks and they had one kind of similar to this.  

Coconuty Juice Delight:

What you will need:
coconut water
your favorite juice

Directions: Add 2/3 cup coconut water to 1/3 cup juice

Here is my at home work out for the day:
total time: 35 minutes

warm up:
-200 jump rope
-50 sit ups
-100 jump rope

work out:
set timer for 25 minutes and complete as many rounds as possible
-30 kb swings (see video)
-20 leg lifts (lay on back lift legs all the way up and all the way down)
-20 pus ups (on knees, chest touches the ground)
-50 air squats
-20 swimmers (lay on stomach, keep legs up and chest up while moving hands like you are doing the breast stroke)

I just bought a kettle ball at walmart for $35!  They are pretty expensive everywhere else.  I got a discount on mine because it had a small hole in the fabric around it, score!  I got a 25 pound one.  I think anywhere from 15-25 is a good amount of weight.  25 is perfect for kb swings.

Also please click here to read the funniest thing I have read in a long time!  You will laugh out loud, trust me!!!

How to make your own wall ball

 When I was at my parent’s house I asked my mom if she had any old basketballs I could use to make something.  My sister and I got about five balls and headed to the park around the corner that has a ton of sand.  We made medicine balls and they turned out awesome! I just saved myself over fifty bucks easy.  Some of them cost up to $80.

What you will need:

Any size old basketballs/soccer balls
Use a water bottle for a filter.  Cut the end of the water bottle off. 


Make an X with scissors/knife in the ball
Use the water bottle as a filter to fill the ball up with sand.
Use duct tape to put over the hole in the ball

I'm probably going to cover my entire balls with duct tape.  One of the balls is 18 pounds and the other one is 12.  You will probably only need a medium size basketball/soccer ball.  I saw small ones at walmart for only $5.  A normal size one ends up being too heavy.  I didn't fill up the spalding basketball all the way. 

Click here for a work out by Anna Kournikova with a medicine ball

Or type in medicine ball into my fitness buddy app and 20 or more will come up 

Some of my favorite things right now

This week I was determined to only spend 30 dollars on groceries.  I usually do my grocery shopping on Mondays, so yesterday I went out and took 30 dollars cash with me and only spent 30 dollars!  It was a miracle.  I am trying to budget better so we can have more money for uhhhh vacations duh what else would we save for?  

this sun dried tomato pesto at walmart for about 2 dollars is so delicious and I add it to couscous.  

I found organic lettuce at the superstition farmers market today for $1 each.  I was so excited!  It made my day.  I love a good deal

I love making my own peanut butter.  It's so easy and a lot cheaper.  Just add honey roasted peanuts to a food processor/blender (blendtec or vitamix) and mix with desired amount of peanut oil depending on how creamy you want your peanut butter to be.  

I love these measuring cups I got from anthropologie

Walmart now sells organic eggs for only about 3.20 per dozen.  I am loving walmart lately.  I got this egg crate at anthropologie too

This ice cream is so delicious and dairy free.  I try to stay away from dairy as much as possible. 

I love trying new healthy cookbooks from the library.  This one was pretty good.  She has a couple of good recipes I tried.  She's a little bit too extreme vegan for me.  I didn't recognize a lot of the ingredients in her recipes.  

Healthier cupcakes.  I love finding new dessert recipes and making them my own.  These were really good.  I will put the recipe on my next post.  

Make Your Own Gym for $100

I love finding new workout equipment to add to my little gym I made for myself.  Craigslist is definitely the way to go with most workout equipment.  You can get weights for more than half off.  This is a list of my top 5 workout items for making your own gym.  It will cost you only 100 dollars to make your own gym.  

Resistance band: $10 walmart

apex workout bench: $39 walmart

Pull up bar: walmart $19

40 Pound Weight set: walmart $20

Stability ball: $10 

 These are a couple things that I want to get soon:

wall ball: I use this every day at cross fit.  I want one so I can start doing cross fit at home.  

Kettle ball: also used every day at cross fit.  I found one for 35 dollars at walmart

Power tower: I found one on craigslist for 80, but I'll have to save up for this and find somewhere to put it.

Resistance band that hooks in door.  Walmart: $20

Since I started doing cross fit I realized that you don't even need a gym membership, in fact I get a better work out without one.  At the gym I would never sweat as much as I would at cross fit.  I like to make my own workouts I can do at home.  When we were at Lake Powell last weekend I made my sisters do cross fit with me on top of the house boat.  They were sore the rest of the trip and hated me haha.  

Here is my work out for the day!
-cardio: 30 minutes (swim laps) since I am obsessed with watching swimming on the olympics right now
-cross fit: 30 minutes

Here is the cross fit at home work out:

Warm up: Complete 2 rounds of:
-20 push ups
-20 squats
30 sit ups
100 jump ropes

The Work out: Put a timer on for 20 minutes and complete as many rounds as possible
-20 pull ups
-50 lunges (25 on each leg)
-30 sit ups
-10 burpees
-10 knees to chest
-20 leg raises

what you will need for the work out: A pull up bar (20 dollars at walmart) or do push ups instead of pull ups.  For the pull ups I get a jumping start so that I can actually do 20 of them.  

Here are some videos of the exercises:
Knees to chest exercise:



New Favorite Drink

We have been at Lake Powell this past weekend.  I wish I could stay there an entire month each Summer.  It is one of my favorite places in the World.  I spent so many hours paddle boarding.  The house boat we stayed on had four paddle boards so whenever we weren't on the boat I took a paddle board out.  This is the first lake trip I have been on that I surfed more than wakeboarded on the lake.  My dad just bought a brand new wake surfboard and we had a blast trying to learn tricks on it.  
Check out this cool wakesurf youtube video.  I have been constantly watching youtube videos of pro wakesurfing.  I'm convinced that I need to go to the lake everyday so I can be a pro!  Its as good as surfing gets here in AZ.

This is my new favorite drink!  I hardly ever drink anything but water. Sometimes that gets a little boring.  

What you will need:
any kind of mineral water
crystal light pure pack
-Add half of a crystal light pure pack to your mineral water and mix! 
crystal light pure packs are sweetened with truvia which comes from a stevia plant.  This is an all natural sugar from a plant.  Definitely a better alternative to other sugary drinks.