Bloggers Unite For A Hike

by HEAB on December 28, 2009

Yesterday was so much fun. After my nut butter extravaganza of a breakfast, Alice (my mother-in-law) drove Deb and I to the Gateway Trailhead at the McDowell Sonoran Preserve. There we met up with Bekah from Beek Eats and her mom, Tenaya. Look, aren’t they so cute? 🙂


Sweet Bekah brought me a bag of her homemade granola (amazing Beeks!) along with a bag of Yogi Chips. I’ve been coveting Bekah’s beloved yogi chips every time she mentions them on her blog. So good you guys – notice the empty bag. I am so hoping I can find these in Nashville!


Alice led us on 6.4 mile hike up to Inspiration Point and back. Bekah, me, and Deb pre-hike…


Along the trail…


Alice leads hikes through the Preserve as a volunteer steward, and her knowledge of the surrounding area is amazing as are her hiking abilities. The first 3 miles were up up up.




After our 3 hour hike, we drove to The Pita Jungle for lunch with another one of my all-time favorite girls, Jenn from Eating Bender. Jenn and I met up over the holidays in Arizona last year, and I’m so glad she was able to join us!


We started with hummus and Baba Ganoosh with whole wheat pita.


For my meal, I ordered the Lavosh Shawarma Wrap with broccoli.


Gosh it was good, and afterwards, we all walked next door to The Gelato Spot for a little dessert. Deb treated me to a scoop of Cookie ‘N’ Creme. Thanks Deb!


Dairy free? Um, nope, but worth every bite.

Hiking in the sunshine + hummus with friends + gelato = my idea of a perfect day. Unfortunately, CD had to stay behind. Poor boy is still sick. 🙁

Many thanks to Alice for leading us on such a great hike, to Bekah and Tenaya for driving 2 hours from Tucson to join us, to Deb for driving 4 hours from CA, and to Jenn for meeting us for lunch. I love you all! 🙂


Beth December 29, 2009 at 12:51 pm

Heather, just roasted an organic kabocha in your honor. It was my first kabocha. Is it usually SO dry? I ate the whole 3.5lb guy along with a 3 lb roasted eggplant for lunch along with broccoli and fish. Very yummy but WHAT was I thinking???
Keep up this AWESOME blog. You rock!!!

Heather Eats Almond Butter December 29, 2009 at 1:41 pm

Beth, Some kabocha are more dry than others, and the last one I had was pretty dry too. Still delicious though. 🙂 Glad you enjoyed your lunch and thanks for reading P.S. I’ve put down an entire 3+ lb kabocha before…it’s easy to do!

maggie December 29, 2009 at 11:48 am

Just when I started drooling at that lavish wrap you end it with gelato! Yummmm!


Tina December 29, 2009 at 10:57 am

That looks like soo much fun. I’ve been dying to go on a hike! Lovely friends and food make the perfect day 🙂

Jennifer Trigo December 29, 2009 at 10:34 am

aww. this is cool. I wish I had some girlies to do this with. I haven’t had gelato in a good while. but this cookie n cream protein powder and oikos mixture with frozen berry melody comes pretty close to it!:D almond butter and celery to scoop it up with also needs mentioning.:P

Kim December 29, 2009 at 10:29 am

Just like Averie, I made my hubbie a full Turkey Day dinner. Me and Bella had our own version 😉 We tend to eat 3 diff meals around here, sigh….. In my book, pancakes are good ANY time of the day! My daughters fav is when we do ” opposite day”, Breakfast for dinner. Little does she know just my excuse of being lazy to make a real dinner….

carolinebee December 29, 2009 at 10:22 am

Aw i read this on my phone so i couldn’t see the pics…but I now I doooo and it looks so fun!!! That doughy wrap looks to die forr, ah i love middle eastern food! (mostly ordering it…bc shawarma and baba ganoush are fun to say ;D)

Whit December 29, 2009 at 10:20 am

How fun! All those ladies seem so fabulous! Glad you guys had such a great meet up!

Diana (Soap & Chocolate) December 29, 2009 at 10:13 am

Hot damn, that’s a hell of a hike. Way to take advantage of the scenery! Definitely jealous as I sit here shivering in NYC, haha. Fun times with fun ladies, no doubt!

Cindy December 29, 2009 at 9:58 am

what a great day of fun and with great friends!

loved every minute of it..thanks for sharing!

The Voracious Vegan December 29, 2009 at 9:40 am

Wow! What an awesome day you all had! I would love to go hiking for such a long way, just like I did back when I lived in the states. Here…not so much. The scenery is stunning, perfection, and what better company to be in than an awesome group of fellow bloggers!

Kim December 29, 2009 at 8:10 am

Heather, made oat bran pancakes @ 5am in honor of you. Very yummy! Will see how I hold up on these as oats have been bothering me lately 🙁 My original batch of coconut flour ones were a bust this morning. Maybe b/c it was 4:45am when I was attempting to make them? I ordered all my “gums” over the weekend to make some protein ice cream w/ the magic bullet. More for hubbie than for me. His addition to Ben & Jerry’s is going to his tummy! Of course I would NEVER tell him that, just give him a yummy sub to try instead!

Heather Eats Almond Butter December 29, 2009 at 9:18 am

Kim, You’re a good wife. 🙂 Hoping to make pancakes sometime today. As I always say, nothing wrong with pancakes for lunch!

eaternotarunner December 29, 2009 at 8:06 am

That looks like so much fun, and I am definitely jealous of that weather!

Simply Life December 29, 2009 at 7:29 am

Looks like a great time and oh, that granola looks amazing!

eatmovelove December 29, 2009 at 7:00 am

I knew there was a reason I want to live in Arizona…please the WEATHER!! It is so COLD here, ahhh – I just run out to the car and back. I’m meant to be somewhere with fallish weather I think all year round…not too particular right? 😉

Katie December 28, 2009 at 11:42 pm

Oh my gosh, you just made me homesick! I love that hike and Pita Jungle just opened in Flagstaff and is my new favorite restaurant!! Isn’t the hummus fantastic? I am really picky about hummus, but I get a platter of all three flavors there every single time I go and am never disappointed. I haven’t tried that wrap though. I got the spicy chicken wrap last time that the waitress described as “the size of a small child”. And she wasn’t kidding. Even I couldn’t finish it, which is saying something!

Kim December 28, 2009 at 10:53 pm

All the snakes are sleeping…too cold for them. You might see an occasional coyote which is actually kind of cool. We had a bobcat in our front yard last month!

caronae December 28, 2009 at 10:51 pm

I’m so jealous! I love hiking and running in scenic areas! But probably not in the southwest, because I’m terrified of snakes! Sounds like an awesome day!

Ashlei December 28, 2009 at 10:43 pm

Hiking in AZ is so amazing! That definitely looks like you’re having a blast out there!

Jenn (eating bender) December 28, 2009 at 10:06 pm

Woohoo! So much fun 🙂 Still bummed that I couldn’t make the hike portion of the blogger extravaganza but I’m so glad I was able to meet you ladies for lunch and gelato! It was great to catch up with you, Heather. Enjoy the rest of your time in Scottsdale — you are such a joy and I am so glad to know you!

Gena December 28, 2009 at 9:59 pm

You ladies are all so glowing and radiant! And you all have really nice hiking clothes, too 🙂

Kim December 28, 2009 at 9:49 pm

Love McDowell mountain. My hubby and I had our first date there hiking ,so much fun! Pita Jungle…love and the gelato. Pita Jungle is a fav around here. Looks like you are enjoying your stay here! Hope CD feels better soon. I am ready for it to warm back up here, too cold for a converted midwest girl. Hopefully the warm AZ sun will shine before you have to go back home! Lastly, made your coconut flour pancakes for breakfast for my 7yr and hubbie, topped w/ some fresh almond butter from WF, they loved it! Thanks for the awesome ideas. I have a Kabocha begging to be cooked as well. Tomorrow’s project!

Heather Eats Almond Butter December 28, 2009 at 10:12 pm

Kim, Arizona is so beautiful in December, even if it a little chilly. The hiking is great, and I am in love with Pita Jungle. So wish we had something like that in Nashville! Happy to hear you enjoyed your pancakes. I’m missing my coconut flour…might try making some tomorrow with oat bran. I’ve got plenty of topping choices with all my nut butters. 🙂

Pure2Raw twins December 28, 2009 at 9:27 pm

Love all the hiking pictures 😉 I love to hike wish there was places like that around where I live ?!?! Food looks delicious!

Heather @ The Joyful Kitchen December 28, 2009 at 9:27 pm

Yes please on the ice cream! The hike looks completely awesome, too 🙂

Colleen Cameron December 28, 2009 at 9:12 pm


It’s been a while since i’ve commented but just thought I should stop in to say I still read everyday and you make me smile!

Heather Eats Almond Butter December 28, 2009 at 9:13 pm

Thanks Colleen. 🙂

Light Delight with Tou Tou December 28, 2009 at 9:10 pm

Oh I wish we had a warm weather like yours!! here in maryland is freezing…..

that pita and hummus looks really good 😀 I would love to home-made them sometime!

ilanalala December 28, 2009 at 9:09 pm

Ahhh I love everything about this post! Yogi snacks are AMAZING, just as good as their teas! I can’t wait for the weather to warm up here to go hiking again (I hate the cold, hate hate hate). It looks like you girls had tons of fun and a really beautiful day.

Also, baba ghanoush!! It’s one of my absolute faaaavorite foods. I love to make it at home. I think I like it better than hummus. That restaurant looks awesome.

Kristie December 28, 2009 at 8:12 pm

Love hiking – and it looks like the weather was beautiful. Just a bit jealous you got to hang out with Jenn; she is such a sweet heart! 🙂

tangerinesandmarmalade December 28, 2009 at 8:00 pm

Look at you three foxy ladies in black! Like secret agents!

gina (fitnessista) December 28, 2009 at 7:48 pm

my heart is SO homesick right now.. the saguaro cacti does me in, every time 🙂 thank goodness i’ll be in az next week! yahooooo!
looks like a beautiful hike and a delicious lunch with gorgeous girls 😀 so glad you had fun!

Heather Eats Almond Butter December 28, 2009 at 7:52 pm

We missed you this year Gina! 🙁

fitlizzio December 28, 2009 at 7:38 pm

how fun!! i live in AZ and have never done that mcdowell hike. I’ve always stuck to camelback and squaw peak. I’ll have to check that out!

Christopher Ian Hill December 28, 2009 at 7:30 pm

Mmmmmmm…..sounds good!!! 🙂 I can change my diet if I can eat something like that!!!!

I am trying to think of what healthier restaurants we have in Salem, OR.

Christopher Ian Hill December 28, 2009 at 7:18 pm


That food looks so good! What does the Lavosh Shawarma Wrap consist of? It looks delicious! 🙂 Also, that dessert. Having dessert after being in the desert! 🙂

I had a good work out today at the gym! I have to really work on myself as far being dedicated. That’s my big problem sticking to things.

~Chris 🙂

Heather Eats Almond Butter December 28, 2009 at 7:20 pm

Christopher, Happy to hear you’re back at the gym. Keep at it my friend. The Lavosh wrap consisted of Grilled marinated chicken breast, grilled tomatoes, grilled onions, and garlic sauce, wrapped in lavosh bread and wood-fired.

Nicole December 28, 2009 at 7:14 pm

How awesome that so many people were able to meet up with you! And Alice leading your hike is even more cool!
I love, love, LOVE Arizona. I have family in the Phoenix area (my aunt lives in Chandler and my mom spends the winters with her; my grandmother is out there with them too) Isn’t it amazing out there?
I’m really happy you’re having a great time out there and that everyone has been able to meet up with you.

Heather Eats Almond Butter December 28, 2009 at 7:18 pm

Nicole, Yes, amazing. I love Arizona in December. 🙂

chrysta December 28, 2009 at 7:01 pm

wow! that looks like so much fun. Im so glad you all could meet up and join in for a fantastic hike and some good eats!

Carolyn December 28, 2009 at 6:56 pm

Alice looked very professional 😉

Bekah December 28, 2009 at 6:54 pm

Yeahhh.. I’m still on a blogger meet up high. SO MUCH FUN!

I’m expecting lots of views from this post Heather.. heh heh! 😉
Again- it was one of the best days ever. My mom sure did enjoy herself too.

Averie (LoveVeggiesandYoga) December 28, 2009 at 6:31 pm

Ok so now I am even more bummed: 4 great blogging girls all in one spot!!! All like a mile from my house…and where am I? On the other side of the world! I am going to be back in AZ late late Wed nite. You’ll probably be gone…sigh 🙂

The hike looks great. And of course, I wish I Was with you girls!!!!

theemptynutjar December 28, 2009 at 6:30 pm

Give me a tub of that ice cream 🙂
What a beautiful place! It must be so peaceful to live there. So simple.
A blogger meet-up sounds like so much fun.
Amazed at your hiking abilities (all of you)…amazing amazing amount of activity! (I really liked all the nut butters from yesterday also).
Have a restful night.

Deb December 28, 2009 at 6:17 pm

Can’t tell you how much fun it was . Just glowing with all the wonderful memories! I am so lucky to know such fun & intelligent women.

Next time we can drag CD &. Luvie along!

jenngirl December 28, 2009 at 6:07 pm

Looks like a great day! I love reading about blogger meetups 🙂

Hope CD feels better.

missyrayn December 28, 2009 at 5:50 pm

That hike sounds amazing.

Sorry CD is sick. Hunni got sick yesterday and is the worst of it today.

Peanut Butter Bliss December 28, 2009 at 5:39 pm

thats such a fun idea for a blogger meet up!! hiking & good food are the best!

merittothecarrot December 28, 2009 at 5:33 pm

Pita Jungle is my all time favorite restaurant!!! Looks like you all had a fabulous day 🙂

Emily December 28, 2009 at 5:31 pm

sounds like an amazing hike, Heather! Glad you could meet up with some fellow bloggers, too. Lunch look incredibly delicious…and gelato definitely looks worth it. 🙂 Hope CD feels better soon!

Susan December 28, 2009 at 5:12 pm

SO much blogging goodness all in one spot!! Seriously, all four of you are some of my faaaavourite bloggers! I can’t believe you guys did 3 hours of hiking!!! Must’ve definitely worked up a hunger for those wonderful looking pitas 😉

Tiffany S. December 28, 2009 at 5:10 pm

Fun fun fun! I’m thinking I may have to move somewhere warmer or start looking for PNW bloggers! (My Oregon girls rock, but they’re not right HERE!)

Sorry CD is still sick! He’s gonna need a vacation re-do!

Erica December 28, 2009 at 5:05 pm

What a fabulous day!! The hike looks just gorgeous and the lunch…mmmmm! Love pita with either hummus or Ganoosh- so tasty!!! Hooray for all the blogger meet ups! I have always wanted to meet Jenn- she seems like such a sweetie

N.D. December 28, 2009 at 4:39 pm

That sounds like so much fun!

Veggiesmack December 28, 2009 at 4:39 pm

Sounds like a fun hike! And that wrap and the broccoli look tasty!

homecookedem December 28, 2009 at 4:37 pm

How fun!! 🙂 All of you ladies look awesome!! 🙂

Evan Thomas December 28, 2009 at 4:36 pm

6.4 miles? Was that one way? if so, danng
And that gelato looks delicious

Heather Eats Almond Butter December 28, 2009 at 4:37 pm

Evan, Nope, 6.4 miles total…and the gelato was delicious!

Mama Pea December 28, 2009 at 4:29 pm

I love this post…you just never know how is going to show up next. I was kind of hoping for Keith Urban again 🙂

Jenny December 28, 2009 at 4:24 pm

good times, good times. I love the Bekah’s mom came along. I don’t know if I could get my mom to drive to a hiking site, let alone walk one!

bobbi December 28, 2009 at 4:23 pm

How fun! I want to come!

Jessica December 28, 2009 at 4:21 pm

Now THAT is a blogger meet up! You all look fantastic!

janetha December 28, 2009 at 4:20 pm

oh my gosh how fun!! you are all gorgeous ladies. and the pita jungle is the #1 reason i love arizona 🙂 bekah is so cute and little!

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