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Two Years and Counting - Shivaya Naturals

Two Years and Counting

September 8, 2009

It has been two years since I began this blog, and what a wonderful journey it has been. Thank you to all of you for your daily inspiration, humor and friendship. I look forward to many more wonderful moments, laughs and fun!

I made some changes to the blog late last night, and I would love your opinion. I am not yet finished with how I want the look to be, but I just needed a change, and the anniversary seemed like the perfect occasion.

Although Summer’s end is still a few days away, yesterday felt like a bit of a close to the summer activities. As the days give way to orange and crimson, there was still some yellow glow to be had in our time together as we bid farewell to the warmth and the sun.

There were fun yellow gift bags to present to the wonderful host that fed us well after a long day of garage cleaning on Sunday. These bags are a real treat because I made four of them from just one pillowcase. Considering how many unmatched cases I have around the house, and how many lie ready to be used in thrift stores, I think that I have found my way to make handmade wrappings for the holidays ahead.

One of my favorite pieces of vintage Pyrex held the yummiest pink lady apples with a dipping sauce of peanut butter, honey and a touch of cinnamon.

The days were spent hard at work, but we still enjoyed some moments for rest and gratitude for the summer season. While I will miss the water, the river, and the hikes under the warm sun, I am grateful for the lazy days that we shared together.

Since today is a day for celebration, and no celebration is complete without cake, I give you one of our family’s favorites: Applesauce Honey Cake.

Home made applesauce is a staple of our family, especially as the weather grows cooler and the fresh, tart apples come into season. Most mornings there are apple peelers in place as the little ones emerge, and they are more then keen to help get their morning meal together.

Our recipe (if you can even call it that) is simple and yields a wonderful sauce in under 30 minutes. Eating it straight from the bowl, stirred into oatmeal, or folded into cake are three favorites, but the list is endless for what homemade apple sauce can do.

When my children first entered into their Waldorf education, I picked up the wonderful little recipe book The Waldorf Kindergarten Snack Book. The book is a priceless treasure in my kitchen, and many wonderful celebrations have included something yummy from inside it.

When Jacob was first diagnosed with Celiac disease, it was books like these that found their way into the corners of the kitchen, feeling like they would never have a place again. As time has gone on though, adaption of recipes has become a focus, and bringing back some of the food that we love so well, a priority.

This was the cake that we served our oldest on his second birthday, and here it is again to celebrate a second blog birthday.

Applesauce Birthday Cake
Adapted from The Waldorf Kindergarten Snack Book

1 stick of butter at room temp
1 cup of honey
2 cups of chunk style applesauce (recipe follows)
1 t GF vanilla
2 cups of brown rice flour
2/3 cups of potato starch
1/3 cup of tapioca starch
*Please note that you can substitute the above flours for any 3 cups of basic GF flour mix of your choosing, or 3 cups of regular flour for a standard version.
1 t. cinnamon
1/2 t. nutmeg
2 t. baking soda

Preheat oven to 325
Butter and flour the pan of your choosing (I often use an 8×8, but a 10-inch tube pan also works well)
Cream together butter and honey
Stir in cooled applesauce and vanilla
Sift your flour, cinnamon and baking soda over the applesauce mixture and stir well
Pour batter into pan and bake for 60-75 minutes (depending on pan), or until a cake tester comes out clean
Cool thoroughly and then sift lightly with powdered sugar

Homemade Chunky Applesauce

How many apples you use will depend on how many people you are serving. I use 6 apples to yield 2 cups of applesauce

Apple Cider
Cinnamon and nutmeg if desired

Peel, core and roughly cube your apples
Add to a dutch over or heavy bottom pot
Pour cider over apples (I use a 1/2 cup per 6 apples)
add honey (1/4 cup per 6 apples)

Cook covered on med-low heat until apples are soft but not mushy. If using spices, add them once the juices have really started to flow.
Using a potato masher, pastry cutter or large fork, gently mash applesauce till desired consistency


{ 32 comments… read them below or add one }

SugarMama September 8, 2009 at 3:14 pm

Heather since we are not GF, would we just use 3 cups flour in place of the rice flour and starches? We have a tree full of apples, and this recipe would be great.


Heather September 8, 2009 at 3:17 pm

Yes! Thank you, I should have mentioned that 🙂


the craftivist September 8, 2009 at 3:20 pm

love the changes you made to the site, and am honored to be among your links!


Naturalearthfarm September 8, 2009 at 3:27 pm

Congratulations on two years of sharing! I really like your new banner – beautiful yet simple.

Thank you for sharing the timely recipes.


stitching under oaks September 8, 2009 at 3:53 pm

Heather your blog is looking so good! I like the tweeking that you've done. Love your new header…(i always liked that embroidery piece). Thanks for listing me on your links! what an honor. I'll keep peeking around to see what other goodies you've got linked! Have a great Monday and happy 2 years plus!


julesinseach September 8, 2009 at 4:03 pm

I love love love the new header! What a great Anniversary present to your blog.

That cake looks so yummy, I might try that once the apples on our tree finish with their ripening. Honey Crisps are my favorite apple currently.


Heather September 8, 2009 at 4:05 pm

Oh I LOVE Honey Crisps. They should be in season here pretty soon!!!


Fresh Mommy September 8, 2009 at 4:33 pm

Happy Bogiversary!!!! The site looks great, I like the look of it so far. The header is beautiful and light and cheery.

We just went to the orchard and made homemade applesauce as well, such a perfect treat… but that cake looks awesome!!



Chelsea September 8, 2009 at 5:15 pm

I'm so happy you are a blogger. I love it when your blog shows up on my reader in the morning — it is full of clarity and grace and such sweet images. Thank you, too, for the recipes! I am so ready for apple season.


At Home Mommy Knits September 8, 2009 at 5:15 pm

Love the gift bag idea! I will totally be copying that this fall 🙂


larissa September 8, 2009 at 6:06 pm

Heather happy 2 year blogiversary! your blog looks so nice all spruced up for fall. i like the new buttons – I need to sit down and figure out how to make some. your gift bags are adorable – you really have a knack for repurposing materials into with beautiful results!


Ann September 8, 2009 at 6:53 pm

Love your new site and of course your beautiful photographs, congratualtions on two years of blogging.
I have used windfall apples and just wash and chop rooughly before cooking them in apple cider. They take awhile on a low heat but eventaully mush down. I then use a potato masher on them before pushing it all through a large sieve. The apple puree is wonderful, I don't add any sugar and use it in cakes, on cereals and as the base for my apple butter recipe. Enjoy!


Elana September 8, 2009 at 7:11 pm

Congratulations to two great years. Here is looking forward to many more.


Green Acres in the City September 8, 2009 at 7:12 pm

Happy Blogoversary! That cake looks incredible I think we are going to have to try that this weekend.
I love the new look. How do you create your own layout?


Imene September 8, 2009 at 7:22 pm

Happy blog anniversary! and thumbs up for the new look. I really like it, it puts more emphasis on your pictures


Catie September 8, 2009 at 7:37 pm

Yummy – and since I am GF I love finding recipes that are GF. About the applesauce – have you tried canning it or do you just make it as you need it?


valariebudayr September 8, 2009 at 8:30 pm

Love the new blog look. The gift bags really capture summer. What a great idea. The cake looks yummie too. Thanks for adding the recipe so we can all try it. 🙂


Rebecca September 8, 2009 at 9:03 pm

Happy anniversary. I have loved reading your blog everyday, and I look forward to many more great posts


mama-aya September 8, 2009 at 9:59 pm

The recipes(s) look so yummy. I like Honey Crisp apples, too, but oh! Ginger Crisps are our favorite right now. We've been eating them by the box load (20 cents a pound for "seconds" at the pesticide free farm down the street!).


6p00e55368e0ad8834 September 8, 2009 at 10:33 pm

Happy Day! Thank you for blogging, I love your photos and kind words.
I have had the waldorf recipe books on my wish list for ages, would you recommend them?


bloomingheather September 8, 2009 at 11:08 pm

I do really enjoy your blog — congratulations on your 2nd anniversary! Thanks for visiting me, too! I appreciated your kind comment so much!

I like the changes to your site. It's looking lovely. Here's to many more happy blogging years for you.


Stephanie September 8, 2009 at 11:11 pm

Love the bags, they seem perfect for holiday gifts. Happy anniversary, you have been a true inspiration.


Adie September 9, 2009 at 12:05 am

I like the new look of the blog. It seems lighter and softer. Can't wait to see the other changes. Always enjoy reading your posts


♥ Boomer ♥ September 9, 2009 at 12:31 am

I'm just so delighted that you stopped by today. Your blog is lovely. I'm going to enjoy poking around – and what yummy recipes! Thank you!! ♥


Adrie September 9, 2009 at 1:19 am

Happy anniversary!


renee ~ heirloom seasons September 9, 2009 at 2:20 am

I think your blog looks wonderful. Nice and sunny, warm… I truly enjoy all that you share, and am so glad that you are here! Thank you!!


Kristyn Knits September 9, 2009 at 2:23 am

happy blogiversary! I love the updates you've made…especially that new header!!
love your gift bag idea!
and that apple sauce recipe is already waiting on my printer! thanks for sharing so much of yourself with us.


Geek+Nerd September 9, 2009 at 3:10 am

That cake sounds very yummy!

I have a round Cinderella Pyrex casserole in that same pattern – gift from a blog friend actually. I love it! So bright and sunny!


kyndale September 9, 2009 at 6:56 am

Congrats Heather!! I found you soon after I found SouleMama last summer. Or was it before that? It was the post about the fox.. Your blog has always inspired me. I hope for many more years..if you want of course…of blogging to come. I have to try this recipe. It's making my mouth water right now..Smiles, Kyndale


Hip Mountain Mama September 9, 2009 at 2:42 pm

congrats…you've come a long way baby! The new header looks great!


Heather September 9, 2009 at 4:30 pm

Thank you all so much for your wonderful comments and well wishes. You made my day


Stephanie September 13, 2009 at 12:03 am

That cake and applesauce looks and sounds delicious, thanks for sharing. Congratulations on your two year blogaversary!!! Here's to many more! 🙂


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