Top 12 Children's Books - Ava's Picks

The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more you learn, the more places you’ll go.
— Dr. Seuss
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Given our love of books in this household, I wanted to share a few of our favorites. I will admit that it was a challenge to narrow it down to just 12. We also just received 2 more books yesterday, and they too are filled with beautiful illustrations and incredible messages that engage, teach and inspire. As you can see in the photo above, we had books spread across our couch and Ava was buried in them. Thinking I may have to put together another list as they are all too good not to share.

The most brilliant thing about this list is that they are great books that both kids and parents will love. At least that has been our case which has made reading even more fun. My husband will always say, “You bought more books?”, and then once we read them he will always say, “Wow, what an awesome message! Good purchase!”. I am never surprised to hear his words and it always leaves a smile on my face, and Ava’s!

Now here’s the list (in no particular order and a few silly shots from our photo-shoot!). These are appropriate for ages 2 and up and available online. We hope you enjoy these as much as we do. Happy Reading!

Beautiful Girl - Presents this simple but important message: That to be born female is a very special thing and it carries with it magical gifts and powers that must be recognized and nurtured. Learn More.

The Big Book of Hugs: A Barkley The Bear Story - A memorable journey of what's most important in life: Kindness, hugs, and a little bit of work. Learn More.

Today I Feel Silly: And Other Moods that Make My Day - Helps kids explore, identify, and, even have fun with their ever-changing moods. Learn More.

Rosie Revere, Engineer - Rosie may seem quiet during the day, but at night she's a brilliant inventor of gizmos and gadgets with dreams of becoming a great engineer. She learns that she can only truly fail if she quits. Learn More.

In My Heart: A Book of Feelings - Explores a full range of emotions, describing how they feel physically, inside. With a language that is lyrical but also direct, toddlers will be empowered and able to practice articulating and identifying their own emotions. Learn More.

The Most Magnificent Thing - A charming and very funny picture book about an unnamed girl and her very best friend, who happens to be a dog. It offers a perfect example of the rewards of perseverance and creativity. Learn More.

Last Stop On Market Street - A weekly and familiar routine shared between a grandmother and grandson and the beauty of everyday life. Learn More.

Ladybug Girl and the Dress-Up Dilemma - A story about being true to yourself. Learn More.

I Don’t Want To Be a Frog - About a willful young frog with a serious identity crisis and his heard-it-all-before father! Learn More.

People - A celebration of diverse world cultures. Learn More.

Press Here - An interactive book that's fun and magical. Learn More.

Super Duper Safety School: Safety Rules for Kids and Grown-Ups - Teaching children about personal safety in a fun and effective way without instilling fear. Highly recommended by pediatricians, teachers and parents as a valuable resource in educating children. Learn More.

BONUS BOOK:
Children’s Illustrated Atlas - An engaging info-graphic design and easy to understand layout and text. This atlas will get the most reluctant explorer learning about the world outside of their own experience. Learn More.

Children are made readers on the laps of their parents.
— Emilie Buchwald

Salt Therapy

Salt Therapy supports the immune, nervous, and lymphatic systems and has proven to benefit sufferers of allergies, asthma, colds, and even skin issues.
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Do you find your thoughts drifting to that last beach vacation, or that one you've been planning for some time now? A place where you are in your most relaxed state. You may be laying on the Australian silica sands of the Whitsunday islands or, for me, on a 43-foot catamaran sailing the British Virgin Islands (the British Virgin Islands are awesome by the way!). Wherever that place is for you, that wondrous salty sea air sure is intoxicating – it's responsible for the added boost of energy and leaves you with a carefree glow. Bliss filled, isn’t it?!

The great news is that we don't need to travel far to reap the benefits of that salty air, thanks to Salt Therapy. Imagine breathing better, feeling more energized, and carrying that glow with you on a regular basis. Yes, please! Salt Therapy rooms are becoming more popular, and more of a ritual, for those seeking natural healing alternatives for certain health conditions. We can all benefit from the healing powers of Salt Therapy, kids too, which supports the immune, nervous, and lymphatic systems and has proven to benefit sufferers of allergies, asthma, colds, and even skin issues.

Salt Therapy rooms today are designed to reproduce the therapeutic salt caves and mines that were discovered in Eastern Europe back in the 1800’s. This therapy is far from new! True Salt Therapy is also known as Halotherapy. Halo is the Greek word for Salt. Halo-generators have the powerful ability to mimic that same deep underground environment - walls and ceilings beautifully coated with salt and a few inches deep on the floor - it’s an environment that is dry and full of the purest pharmaceutical grade of Salt. This empty processed form of salt is a natural disinfectant, antimicrobial, and antibacterial. It's the negatively charged ions in the salt that have been proven to better our health and mood which explains why we feel so invigorated from that salty sea air. Fascinating!

If you are searching for a holistic alternative for the ailments listed above, then Salt Therapy may be your answer. I suggest you start by searching for salt or halo therapy clinics in your city and book your first session today. For Vancouver residents, Breathe Salt Wellness is the place. The owner, Tara Martinez, will happily answer any of your questions and take the best care of you as you embark on your journey to wellness. Just tell her ava + mum sent you!

Almond Smoothie

Crazy about your heart? Then go nuts!

Did you know that the almond nut is technically a seed of the fruit of the almond tree? A tree that bears fragrant pink and white flowers just like it's cousins, the peach, cherry, and apricot trees and grows in dry and warm climates. Almonds are packed with amazing benefits for our bodies. Full of healthy fats and fiber that can aid in weight loss, help control blood sugar levels as well as lower common diabetic risks, they are rich in oxidants that support a healthy heart, reduce inflammation, and maintain healthy skin thanks to Vitamin E. Sign me up!

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Given all of these benefits, we recommend trying our favorite almond smoothie. Only 5 wholesome ingredients are needed, and a blender of course. So simple and so yummy! Make it just for yourself, or share it with an awesome little person like I am with in the photo above. Yep, that's Ava. But be aware, if you do share it with an awesome little person, you may not be able to get your straw in more than a few times - it's really that good!

Ingredients
3 cups of Whole Organic Milk (or a milk of your choice - homemade cashew milk works well!)
1/2 cup of Dry Roasted Almonds
2-3 Organic Medjool Dates
1 tsp Organic Vanilla Extract
1/2 tsp of cinnamon
Ice (optional)

Method
Add all ingredients to blender and blend on high until smooth. If you are adding ice, you probably just need a handful for a nice cold almond smoothie treat.

Enjoy!

Portugal

Europe’s most beautiful golden beaches
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Given Portugal's recent win of the Euro Cup, I felt it only appropriate to shed some light on the beautiful country itself. But before I jump in, Congratulations Portugal!

Portugal, the magical Southwestern European country that's bordered by the Atlantic Ocean and Spain. A country that boasts cities with diverse attractions from ancient to contemporary, colorful medieval fishing villages, cultural diversity, rich architectural heritage, charming seaside towns, green luscious landscapes, impressionable rivers, and a coastline that will leave you fully relaxed. And then there are the Portuguese people. A culture that is welcoming to all; kind, charismatic, generous, and loyal. I say this, not as someone that has a Portuguese heritage, but as one that has lived in Portugal for seven years. I have experienced it first-hand.

If you are planning a trip to Portugal - or considering it - I would recommend at least three places to visit. The first is Lisbon, the seductive capital. Second is Porto, the majestic port city. And the third is an entire region, Algarve, which is the home to some of the most stunning beaches in the world. I kid you not - look it up! Stunning.

Lisbon

 Lisbon, 25 de Abril Bridge

Lisbon, 25 de Abril Bridge

Lisbon, a city of culture, romance, and vibrant energy. Some of the most beloved districts of Lisbon are filled with graffiti-ridden facades that are homes to tourist-packed fado houses, restaurants, boutiques, and a multitude of bars. Some districts so elegant and sophisticated. And some that display the influence of Portugal's history in architecture, interiors, and even colors - spots where Prince Henry the Navigator, Vasco da Gama, and Magellan stood with dreams of discovering the world. So much beauty in Lisbon and so much to enjoy - it's a city that caters to all. A city that will not disappoint.

Below is a breakdown of the districts.

Baixa - Broad squares, 18th-century architecture, patterned pavements, popular cafes
Bairro Alto and Chiado - Vibrant nightlife, picturesque streets, classic and alternative culture, very chic, shopping, restaurants
Belem - The Age of Discovery; grandiose monuments, and museums in ornate stonework
Alfama - Medieval maze, spectacular views, the sounds of Fado, and imposing castle (ruins)
Uptown - Masterpieces and museum treasures, shopping
Parque das Natacoes - Futuristic architecture mostly built by innovative architects for Expo 1998
Praca do Marques de Pombal - Famous roundabout (Praca pronounced prassa)

I would highly recommend checking out the Estoril Coast - called Linha do Estoril which is west of Lisbon. It's a beautiful scenic drive along the coast with miles of beaches and breathtaking architecture. If you prefer public transportation (highly recommended here), there is a train that runs along the Estoril Coast and you can hop on and off to check out the sites. Such abundance in this area with no shortage of cathedrals, monasteries, boardwalks, beaches, bars, and nature spots. Whatever you prefer to explore, you will certainly find it along the way.

 Linha do Estoril

Linha do Estoril

Cascais is on the Estoril Coast which is another MUST see! Spectacular beaches, restaurants, historic landmarks, and the famous castle, Castelo de Sao Jorge.

Costa da Caparica is a popular beach spot. Very nice. But if you are looking to ride some waves, then Ericeira is the best surf spot in Portugal; and one known in the world of surfing.

Porto

 Porto, Dom Luis Bridge

Porto, Dom Luis Bridge

A city that is culturally diverse, with churches and monuments, and the region well-known for it's Port and Douro wines. The River Douro, seen in the above photo, runs between Porto and Vila Nova de Gaia - the river is breathtaking. I have yet to spend some time exploring this magical city, sipping wine while overlooking the spectacular Douro Valley and it's vineyards. Imagine waking up to the below for even a day? Move over Napa.

 The Douro Valley, Vineyards

The Douro Valley, Vineyards

A few attractions to check out if you can pull yourself away from the above view.

Cathedral
Church of Sao Francisco
Casa de Musica
Serralves Museum
School of Architecture

Algarve

 Algarve Beach, Praia da Marinha

Algarve Beach, Praia da Marinha

Algarve has some of Europe's most beautiful golden beaches. It's also a golfing paradise with views of clear blue waters, and breathtaking scenery. From the Eastern side near the Spanish border, all the way to the Western Algarve is marked with spectacular sandy beaches and historic towns and fishing villages. Some of the most historic towns are Sagres, Faro, and Lagos. The western part of the Algarve is magical - less crowded also; so if you are looking to get away from the crowds or looking for a secluded cove, head West. Odeceixe is worth getting to. It's north of Sagres and one of Algarve's best kept secrets.

Award winning resorts can be found in Vale do Lobo, Quinta do Lago, and Vilamoura. I actually spent years of my childhood in these three areas - just spectacular! A very relaxed beachy vibe and there is a nice marina that is worth checking out, particularly for any boat lover. If you are in search of that beach vibe with a bit more action, then head to the tourist mecca, Albufeira. Albufeira has some of the most famous beaches and has a fun party scene. 

Waterslide Parks have become quite popular in Portugal since the early 80's. In fact, my dad built some of these waterslide parks. The two that are still going strong today are AquaShow which is located in the Vilamoura and Quarteira area and then there is Slide & Splash in Lagoa. Slide & Splash is the best-rated one by TripAdvisor which is awesome. Clearly, makes me proud even though it is no longer owned by my family. 

 Portimao Marina

Portimao Marina

Before I sign off, here's a list of the top 10 beaches in Algarve. Two of the most famous and popular are Praia da Oura in Albufeira and Praia da Rocha in Portimao. One of my childhood beaches was Praia da Falesia which is located between Albufeira and Vilamoura. It's six kilometres of golden sand and cliffs. Simply breathtaking. But again, any beach in Portugal is pretty spectacular.

Praia da Marinha (Carvoeiro)
Dona Ana (Lagos)
Ilha de Tavira (Tavira)
Praia dos Barcos (Albufeira)
Praia da Rocha (Portimao)
Sao Rafael (Albufeira)
Meia Praia (Lagos)
Praia da Oura (Albufeira)
Praia de Vale de Lobo (Vale de Lobo)
Praia de Odeceixe (Odeceixe)

If you have any questions or would like to add to this post, I would love to hear from you.

Happy Travels!

An expression of praise to living off the land

Living off of the land is a beautiful gift!
 This was taken in 2015 when my mom met Ava for the first time in San Francisco.

This was taken in 2015 when my mom met Ava for the first time in San Francisco.

A couple weeks ago, during one of our regular Skype chats with Portugal, my mother paid me a compliment. She has always been generous and kind with her words so this wasn’t out of character in any way – but – it was the way she said it. There was a tenderness in her voice; a sense of pride was very much present. In Portuguese, she told Ava that she was a lucky little girl to have a mama that took such good care of her, a mama that spent time with her, and played with her. A mama that made an effort to provide her with wholesome food, food that took love, thought, and effort to prepare. She turned to me and told me that I was a good mama.

Sometimes I feel as though I have no idea what I am doing as a mother, and other times, well, I feel like a superhero. Bam! Those are the great moments – those superhero moments. More of those, please!

What an amazing acknowledgment from an extraordinary woman, my mom. Seriously. A woman who dreamt things for me before I could see them for myself. A woman who always put my needs first, who made room for my plans before her own. Of course, it got me teary-eyed and feeling all fuzzy inside. It was a huge compliment!

After our conversation, I began reminiscing - taken to my own childhood. More specifically, how the food I was given as a child influenced me and shaped me into the woman I am today.

Before moving to Portugal at a young age, I had the privilege of spending my first seven years of life in the most beautiful part of British Columbia, Canada, the Okanagan Valley, also known as wine country. My family owned an orchard, acres of land, filled with glorious fruit trees from apples, cherries, pears, peaches, plums, apricots, the most delicious fruit I have ever had. We also had a vegetable garden (including some fruit of the berry variety) that would yield fresh organic produce to keep the family fed.

The memories of this time are endless! I enjoyed playing in the orchard – playing in large fruit bins when I was a wee girl and then venturing off with our dogs to see what we could find in the orchard. There was always something fun to do and explore like running around barefoot and having the fallen cherries squish between my toes. The late night canning of fruit and vegetables to last us for the entire year. Canned peaches and pears that we would have with vanilla ice cream, canned cherries, pickled onions, beets, carrots, cucumbers, cabbage, peppers, and the list went on. We had a grand selection of fruit jams – apricot was my favorite and still is! There were also the hot green peppers that my dad would have with my mother’s soup. Her soup was good too. Maybe that is where my love of pickles comes from – we had a cooler room full of them and the best pickles ever! In fact, everything from that cellar was incredible. And then there was the smell of my mother’s fresh bread out of the oven, I can still taste that warm bread with the melted butter. So much freshness and so much goodness - does it get any better than that? Not for me.

I plan to one day have our own garden and maybe even a few fruit trees – okay, maybe the fruit tree part is a little far-fetched but still, I will continue to keep that dream alive as living off the land is a beautiful gift, a more sustainable one, and one that I love. Before all of that, though, I want to acknowledge my mother and thank her for her teachings that I can now pass on to my little girl. Thank you, Mom. Thank you for everything.

 

Almond Chocolate Chip Cookies

Almonds... lower blood sugar levels, reduce blood pressure, and lower cholesterol levels.

 

Have you ever found a cookie recipe and thought "wow, those look amazing" and then you make them only to find out that, well, they are not so amazing? Well, I have and, to be blunt, it's a total bummer. After many batches and many different ingredients, I have finally found a fantastic combination that has left my family wanting to eat the whole batch in one sitting! I would say chocolate cookie success :)

I have made two batches of these so far and knew the recipe needed to be shared. If you like chocolate, almonds, and oats, then this nutritious cookie is for you. These are perfect if you are on the go, or even as a treat in your child's lunch box! Plus they can be 100% vegan and gluten-free - bonus! 

Ingredients
Makes 12-13 cookies

Dry Ingredients
1/2 Cup Organic Rolled Oats
1/4 Cup Organic Oat Flour *
1/4 Cup Arrowroot Flour/ Corn Starch
1/4 Cup Finely Ground Roasted Unsalted Almonds
1/2 Tsp Baking Soda
1/2 Tsp Pink Himalayan Sea Salt
1/2 Cup 60% Cacao Bittersweet Baking Chips (I used Ghiradelli - you can use non-dairy also!)

*Oat Flour - I just blend oats at high speed to make the flour.

Wet Ingredients
1/2 Cup Natural Smooth Almond Butter
1/4 Cup Honey or Pure Maple Syrup
3 Tbsp Organic Virgin Coconut Oil softened (not hot)
1/2 Tsp Pure Vanilla Extract

Method
Preheat oven to 350F.
In a large bowl combine wet ingredients and until completely smooth. You can add the dry ingredients to this mixture but I personally like to combine them in another bowl and mix the dry ingredients before adding to the wet ingredients. Your call. Be sure to add the dry ingredients a little at time as it will be easier to combine. Once all ingredients are thoroughly combined, you will have a dough that is slightly wet/ oily which is perfectly normal.

Grab a large baking sheet (21 x 15") and line with parchment paper. You can either use a tablespoon or ice cream scooper to scoop mounds of dough onto the baking sheet (about 2 tablespoons per cookie). I didn't find these cookies to spread too much so I rolled the mounds into balls and then pressed them down on the top and shaped them slightly.

Bake for 10 minutes. Let cook directly on baking sheet for 5 to 10 minutes. The cookies will be delicate until cooled but I recommend trying one that is still warm with chocolate oozing out. Goes well with a cup of tea!

 

 

Leek and Spinach Lasanga

Dark leafy greens like spinach provide protein, iron, vitamins and minerals.

I remember growing up and having amazing meat lasagnas as a child. Once I became a vegetarian at 16, those lasagnas quickly became a distant memory. Over the years, I may have made vegetable lasagnas a handful of times but it was only until recently, making this leek and spinach one, that my love for lasagna resurfaced. It has also become a great way to get some more leafy greens into Ava's diet - a sure way to get her to the table! Keep in mind that this is a freeze-friendly meal so you can make it ahead of time, or even make mini ones, so you can take it out when you need something quick and easy.

Ingredients
Olive Oil
3 Large Leeks, thinly sliced
1 Medium Red Onion, thinly sliced
A Bunch of Spinach (300g approx.), washed and chopped
Ricotta Cheese, 16oz – 454g
Tomato Sauce, 1 litre (Ideally I would love to make it fresh but lately I have been using the Sonoma Gourmet Plum Tomato Marinara or the vegetable one – Both organic and no water or sugar added), 25oz – 709g jar, I use about 1 and a half of another (approx..)
1 Packet of Organic Brown Rice Pasta Lasagna Sheets, or whatever your preference is
Fresh Mozzarella, 8oz – 226g (it comes in a log form so you will need to slice to place evenly on top)
Fresh Parmesan (I use Stella Asiago), grated
Freshly Ground Sea Salt and Pepper to taste

Method
Preheat oven to 420F
Heat large saucepan or pot and add a splash of olive oil. Add leeks and red onions and let sweat slowly until soft and translucent. Add chopped spinach and allow it to wilt down. Turn off heat and set aside to cool slightly and then drain any excess liquid. Add ricotta into the mixture (leek, onion, and spinach) and season with fresh ground sea salt and pepper to taste.
Cook lasagna sheets as instructed on box. I cook them for about 9-10mintues approximately.

Now it’s time to put the lasagna together! Get an oven safe dish (mine is 12 x 8.5”) and pour a quarter of the tomato sauce in. Add a layer of pasta sheets (about three go across in mine), add half of the ricotta mixture, add another quarter of the tomato sauce, add another layer of pasta sheets, then the remainder of the ricotta mixture, top with another quarter of the tomato sauce, add another layer of pasta sheets and top that with the remaining tomato sauce (I always find that I need more tomato sauce so I always use more than 1 jar). Finally, top with grated parmesan and fresh mozzarella. It’s now ready to go in the oven :)

Bake for 45minutes or until golden brown and crispy on top. It should also be sizzling! Enjoy with a green leaf salad.

Blueberry Muffins

Blueberries... the antioxidant king!

Blueberries. We love them and one of my favorite fruits. Sweet, succulent, high in nutrients, and locally in season right now. Blueberries are among the most nutrient-dense out of all the berries and are believed to contain the highest antioxidant capacity of all fruits and vegetables. Antioxidant rich foods are super important as they are proved to protect our bodies from the damage of free radicals, the unstable molecules that can damage cellular structures, our DNA, and contribute to aging and diseases like cancer. Add fiber, vitamin C AND K to the list (and others not listed), and you have one super berry. Yay for these bursts of goodness! 

Given the copious amount of blueberries we recently brought home, I woke up this morning thinking of having a go at muffins. What's the worse that could happen given my challenging baking abilities?! Some people are naturally good at baking; Me? I am naturally good at cooking. That's the reality and I am okay with it. For some reason I find baking so challenging, yet, I keep trying. Sucker for punishment?! Perhaps. The great news is that I am having fun and learning along the way. I aspire to become the one in the family that makes a mean super healthy cookie, for my daughter's sake at least, or in this case, a tasty blueberry muffin. Ha! 

I am happy to report that these blueberry muffins turned out amazing. Ava loved them and they were a huge hit with my husband, who loves blueberry muffins. Apparently blueberry muffins are his favorite (I had no idea!). Like I said, always learning new things.

Here's to the love of blueberries!

Ingredients
Makes 12 standard size muffins

5 tbsp Butter , softened
1/2 cup Honey
1 Large Egg
3/4 cup Creme Fraiche (Bellwether Farms)
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1 1/2 cups Whole Wheat Flour (or all-purpose if preferred)
1 1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1/4 tsp Baking Soda
1/4 tsp Sea Salt
1 cup Fresh Blueberries 

Method
Preheat oven to 375°F.
In a bowl whisk softened butter and honey until light and fluffy. Add egg, whisk. Add creme fraiche and lemon zest and whisk until all wet ingredients are mixed well. In another bowl, combine, flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix dry ingredients and then slowly add to the wet ingredients. You want to add it slowly to prevent clumping. You can use a sifter if you have one and slowly sift dry ingredients into the batter, mixing until all combined. The batter will be quite thick which is what you want. Gently fold in the blueberries. Once completed you can fill your muffin tray by filling each cup to about 3/4 full. It should be the perfect amount of batter for the 12 cups. Some muffins may be slightly larger than others but that's only if you are a non-baker like me ;)

Bake for 25 minutes, the tops will become golden (Be sure to test the center of the muffins to make sure they come out clean - blueberry ok). Let cool slightly. I say slightly as I recommend the first taste be warm - break open and enjoy with your favorite butter. Yum.
 

 

Fresh Pressed Apple, Beet, Carrot, Lemon, and Ginger Juice

An Aphrodisiac Brain Booster!

Do you like to indulge your taste buds with layers of sweet, tangy, and a bit of heat? If so, this fresh pressed juice is a must for you. A perfect combination of flavors and health benefits that quickly, and powerfully, deliver nutrients to your body. As you can see in the photo, Ava loves it! Of course, it is not the wisest choice of fresh pressed juice to have with a toddler given its potential mess factor and staining capabilities (thanks to the amazing beets), but that just means we have a few more wipes on hand and an extra long bath that day.

Below is the recipe for this fresh pressed juice that will energize you (you will seriously feel your body tingle with gratitude) and leave you wanting more!

Cheers!

Ingredients
1 Large Beet
1 Large Apple (Fuji or Gala variety work well)
2 Medium Carrots
1 Medium Lemon
1 -2 Inches of Ginger

Method
In your juicer, put all ingredients through and viola! You may need to adjust to your taste should you prefer a more sweet, sour, or heated blend.

Roasted Almond Coconut Granola

A great way to get your Omega 3’s!

Breakfast! A bowl packed full of goodness. Shown above is organic everything and one favorite way to start our day. Strauss Plain Yogurt, Blueberries, Ava + Mum's Roasted Almond Coconut Granola, Nutiva's Hemp hearts, and a nice drizzle of Dark Amber Maple Syrup.

If you are a granola lover, below is the recipe for our Roasted Almond Coconut Granola. I have experimented with the ingredients in the past but always come back to this one as it seems to be a winner in our family every time. 

Enjoy!

 

Ingredients
1 cup of Whole Roasted Almonds (Whole or Sliced depending on preference)
1 cup of Unsweetened Coconut Flakes (Bob's Red Mill)
1/2 cup of Honey or Dark Amber Maple Syrup
2 1/2 cups of Rolled Oats (Bob's Red Mill Gluten Free)
1 tsp of Cinnamon Powder (or more depending on preference)
1/2 tsp Sea Salt (Optional) 
2 tsp of Vanilla Extract
1/4 Coconut Oil (Nutiva)

Method
Combine almonds, oats, coconut and cinnamon in a bowl. Melt coconut oil in small pot on low. Once liquid, add honey and vanilla and then mix into the almond and oat mixture. Mix well.

Pour into a baking sheet or pan and spread mixture evenly. Bake in oven at 350F for a total of 30 minutes making sure you mix the granola at the 15-minute mark. You will know when it's done as you will have a nice golden looking batch of granola.