Lent has begun and with that comes the sacrifices that we make for the 40 days until Easter.  I know what my weaknesses are and try to make these sacrifices something that I know I will struggle with.  If it was easy it wouldn't be a sacrifice now would it?  This year I gave up sugar and TV (a sacrifice as a family).  Included in the sugar category I am including all artificial sweeteners (Splenda, nutrasweet etc) and natural sweeteners that contain calories (honey, agave, etc) so the only option I am allowing myself is pure stevia (hey, I'm not giving up coffee and I'm not cool enough to drink it black, so I need something).  I think that I am going to be very surprised by the amount of things I consume that contain something in this sugar category.  I know that I have a very strong addiction to all things sweet and am anticipating a withdrawal of sorts in the next week.  Should be interesting.

A while back I saw this deal online for coconut oil, which I use frequently both in baking and toiletries.  The price was pretty amazing and it came with a bag of chia seeds.  I did not know anything about chia seeds except for the Smiling Obama Chia Pet that we got my brother-in-law for Christmas.  I kind of asked around, and then tried a recipe with chia seeds.  It was my first absolutely inedible disaster while baking with somewhat expensive gluten free products.  I think that I was so upset that I tossed them in the back of the pantry and didn't want to attempt anything else. 

The other day one of the blogs that I follow had a Chia-Raspberry Pudding recipe and so I thought I would give them another go around.  Oh my goodness I am in love!  To me it is just like tapioca pudding, something that I enjoy.  If you don't like the texture of tapioca pudding, you probably won't like this.  Just as Maureen from Homemade Mothering made adjustments to her recipe, I made adjustments to my recipe to cut out the sweetener.  I also used unsweetened vanilla almond milk, so it does have a vanilla taste to it.  I think that if it was the regular unsweetened almond milk it would definitely need the fruit in it, I left it out for my batch.
 3 cups unsweetened vanilla almond milk
1/2 cup chia seeds
1 teaspoon stevia (this equals 8 teaspoons sugar)
fruit if desired

Combine all in a container and shake well.  Refrigerate for several hours or overnight.  Shake it a few more times if you think about it.

The chia seeds absorb up to 9 times their weight in liquid, so they form a gel, creating the pudding.

I can't get enough of this.  However, Munchkie saw the bag of frozen blueberries and couldn't get enough of those.  She was a blue mess until bathtime!  This picture doesn't do justice to how blue she really was.

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