top of page

do you believe in ghosts? {no protein pumpkin oat bars)


How was your Halloween MONDAY, way back, like 100 days ago? On Halloween, I drove past the this adorable fall home and had to take a picture. I shared it in stories along with legend, that suggests the veil between the worlds is most thin on this day.

Thoughts like this used to make me nervous in some way. Inside my head I was thinking, 'please don't prove to me ghosts are real!' It came from a very fear-based place.

But now, especially on days like this, I welcome connections with spirit guides, angels and loved ones lost. I try to take time to remember my ancestors, and to welcome them into my 3-dimensional world.

Do you believe in ghosts? Or signs sent to you from another space? I don't have any rigid beliefs (I know better than to speak in absolutes) but I am certain we are surrounded by energy that most humans cannot see, hear, feel or touch. And this presence is more palpable and calming than any religion has ever been in my life.

What do you believe?


Ready, set, CLICK! (That's right; the gym tree went up and I'm not sorry about it.)

I thought I'd start off with a in, my top bang-for-your-buck stocking stuffer gifts for under $25.

It may seem early to many but for me, this is prime shopping time. With three birthdays between Thanksgiving and Christmas in our house, getting these gifts bought and stashed is essential to my sanity. And prevents a walgreens run on Christmas Eve (which has happened).

Happy shopping from my favorite place to yours...the comfort of home! Put on some soothing music, brew a cup of something special and sink into the joy of getting this last minute task done early. This year more than ever, I am working hard to finish my tasks in November so I can truly embrace the magic of December and my kids while they still (sometimes) want to be with me.

The Meat Chopper I use every day. Often I wish I had two of them. Whether you're a whiz in the kitchen or just learning to brown meat, this is an essential item!

My favorite Oracle Deck is brand new and on sale right now! If you're someone who as been asking where to start with these cards, my suggestion is this person and this deck! Kyle is so approachable and even though the subject matter can feel heavy to some, he brings a lightness and comfort that I believe is great for a beginner. My kids all love this deck too. It is vibrant, easy to understand and his guidebook includes wonderful insight on how to use the cards.

Milk Frother that I have never once used to froth milk. I use it daily to blend my nightly dream powder and my daily protein coffee. It's not that a spoon won't work. But I want everything to be dissolved perfectly and the milk frother gets that done in a way no utensil can!

Cozy Earth Plush Modern Crew Sock is like gliding my foot into a slipper without any of the bulk. Perfect for wrapping my feet underneath me but still thick enough to stay warm walking around the house. Like a higher sock? There is also the Plush Lounge Sock for just over $25 when you use my 45% off code (Katie45). Unlike a lot of other brands who will probably dip extra deep only around Black Friday, Cozy Earth is keeping my code live between now and the end of 2022.

My Loopy Phone Case is the difference between my phone being in my hand and a bowl of rice drying out from the pot I dropped it in. The link should take you to a page where you have some options for discounts if you are in the market. And since it's time to upgrade to a new phone (which I HATE), insuring it stays in my grip matters more than ever.

Favorite Tiny Twist Earrings are a constant in my ears. I sleep in them, sweat in them and feel personally victimized when I need to take them out for any reason. All the jewelry from these local Wisconsin business owners is delicate and beautiful. I love getting an extra thing or two during a sale and holding for Valentines Day gifts for my girls.

G2G Bars > than any Christmas stocking candy with the obvious exception of this peppermint bark and maybe Reese's trees. If you ever have trouble hitting the $75 for free shipping, this is a great season to buy and share! My code KatieC will always save you 15%. Best flavors for me are the peanut butter chocolate chip and the almond oatmeal cookie.

Babe Original pro lash separator and volumizing mascara will be stocking stuffers for my girls and gifts for teachers, hostesses and friends this season. Also (shhh), here's a sneak peek at the best holiday sales: on 11/11 only, buy a brow serum, get a free lash serum. From 11/23-11/28 the entire site will be up to 75% off and get a free lash serum when you spend $75. Code Katie can also be stacked for an additional 20% off.

Fireside Spruce Candle from Home & Hearth available at Target. The 6 oz size is perfect gifting size and the seasonal winter scent transcends into cozy fireside nights in January without making you long for Christmas!

My Favorite Mug Not only holds the just the right amount of coffee and fits my hands perfectly, but has the best reminder I can never see enough.

Toaster Tongs with a little magnetic spot, they live on our fridge. The girls use these every single day. Disclaimer: it might not work on husbands. I'm still trying to get Wayne to quit using a metal fork.

My Favorite Dry Shampoo is so cheap and effective you won't believe it. You shake a little onto a brush and comb through your hair. There's a darker color for brunettes. This is a lifesaver for my girls and me. It also doubles as a really nice volumizer if you have thin hair like we do.

I hope this list of my favorite 'little' things helps get you going on shopping! Anything I missed? Please add it to the comments to help ME out! I am definitely short on husband and dad ideas!


This was 'a jumper' (a card that pops out of the main bundle when shuffling, and is here as an 'extra' for guidance) on the first reading from the deck I recently ordered (linked above). Even though I've never pulled it on a spread, it has 'jumped' at me several times now. My intuition tells me its wisdom is something I need to share with everyone here:

'Loving yourself can be one of the greatest challenges to overcome, but not for your soul...for your ego. The reason self‑acceptance can be so hard is because your ego will try to make your love conditional. You will love yourself when your body is “perfect” or when you finish the project you are working on, and on and on.

But love is unconditional. It goes beyond boundaries, achievements, and vanity. Loving yourself is about being willing to see the great spark of light and goodness in the depth of your being; it’s about being willing to respect that the body you are in is a miraculous vehicle in which you are able to experience the brightness of your soul.

Lovingly accepting yourself means truly honoring who you are. It’s about moving beyond the self‑perceived flaws and finding the beauty anyway. It’s deciding you are no longer going to be represented by a negative opinion, fear, or anything else that’s come between you and your goodness in the past.'

Love is who you are. Today the Universe is inviting you to recognize this truth.

Mantra: 'I am love, head to toe, body to soul.'

- as pulled from the guidebook

This insight was just what I needed. I hope this was able to help you with any perspective shift you may have needed as well.


I have a present for you!

Recently I wrote an article about the most cost efficient way to buy and consume protein. I share not only the top 8, but also how to apply the my process to your own favorite sources to see how they stack up. It will go on my shopify page as a downloadable resource for purchase at some point. But I wanted to share it with my community here for free.

Please let me know in the comments if resources like this would be helpful in the future! Any suggestions for future topics? Please add them!

Click the link below to download.

Top 8 Budget Friendly Protein Sources
Download PDF • 7.96MB


We were invited Sunday to an authentic northern italian dinner by our friends whose 'Nonna' is in town. We were treated to possibly the most delicious meal of my entire life. Full stop. All family recipes handed down generation to generation. Make with so much love. Even if I had the recipes I could never duplicate the experience! But my favorite item of the night were the 'polpettes' which is a sauceless meatball that truly is the star of the plate!

After two years of NO class parties, this one was epic. These pinata cookies were insane (I did not make them). The kids broke them open and sprinkles went everywhere! I think they were more fun to open than to eat, which is sort of the story of Halloween candy around here, as evidenced by the half-eaten bars that look like fallen soldiers around the house.

I have a photo 4 years prior in this very spot where there were 4 of them in 4 inches of snow!

We all appreciate a good full size candy bar but one house was handing out baking-sized chocolate bars!

Celebrating this big five-year-old guy is my favorite part about Halloween.

Since establishing a new obsession with the pumpkin pancakes, it's been a real minute since I made the no protein pumpkin oat bars. But a friend requested them so a batch was made! The recipe is in Food for Thought but buried a little deep on my instagram, so I decided it was time to make a recipe card for this one too. Here you go:

No protein pumpkin oat bars
Download PDF • 429KB

Is there any interest in ordering the dry goods mixture? If I get enough feedback I'll open up the shop one more time before the end of the year.

Have you tried The Best Filling that I shared in last week's blog? Here it is in a simple salad; butter lettuce, roasted delicata, and feta cheese. So much flavor, so I went very light with a dressing and just used some Trader Joe's green goddess but balsamic vinegar would have been perfect too!

Funny meme for a serious topic. No way I would have missed this, so I voted early. If you haven't yet, please find your polling place and make space for this like nothing you've made space for before. It's NEVER been more important to ensure your local representatives are aligned with your values.

Incline chest press + RDLs was the workout. Then I made my morning gym wear transition to...

Girls night out to Bartaco on the prettiest November day in Wisconsin history. This called for comfort and style...

Obviously I ditched style and doubled down on the comfort by changing into slipper shoes for the occasion. Fortunately I was seated first.

This chicken rice bowl was fantastic! And I loved that they had chopsticks too.

Flu + Covid boosters happened Thursday and somehow I snapped this picture right after the pokes. I have no idea what made them laugh this hard.

Tess has her first competition of the season next weekend and her team made 'pins,' which is the most adorable way of cheering competitive teams on. It's sort of like a secret admirer thing where you anonymously clip a pin to another's bag, and there's usually an encouraging message of luck from one athlete to another.

Any breaks in this windy, rainy weekend will be filled with this. I loved her novels Seven Husbands of Evelyn Hugo and Malibu Rising, so I have high hopes for this one.

Do you ever get up and're surrounded? Now that it's not generally my children that surround me I find so much comfort in seeing this!


I appreciated this photo coming up for me as I was swiping through options to close this email. At the time I took it, I thought 'what a nice reminder to everyone on Halloween' (and it was!) but today I know is more than that.

It is to me, for me and about me, and I can pinpoint exactly how I am to activate this message.

Therapy was super hard this week. I was physically aching the entire next day. I even wobbled on my feet when I got up at the end of the session. My therapist tells me this is because we are literally rebuilding my foundation. Creating new pathways. Learning a new language. And it takes everything I have to do this.

After a solid night's sleep I went back into regularly scheduled programming today; workout, run errands, take care of the house, work, walk, get the kids, run them all over, serve dinner, etc. Nowhere in that list was any self-care, and I'm still recovering. Being kind, gentle and forgiving myself for needing all the extra rest right now is more relevant than ever.

I still struggle with letting myself unwind when the weather is brilliant and days are long. So I am welcoming this season and the shorter, cooler more insulating days to continue my deep dive into self care. If you're someone who needs a permission slip to do the same, consider this yours.

Have a wonderful November week! Please comment below with any thoughts you may have from this post! Thank you

Warmly, Katie G E T I N T O U C H Communicate & Connect @katiecrokus

YouTube Channel TikTok


There is no bigger show of gratitude to a creator than to comment and share their work. If someone forwarded this to you, but you'd like to subscribe, click here T H E F I N E P R I N T This post may contain affiliate links. All opinions and words are my own. I only talk about products and companies I truly love! Thank you for your continued support! You can find all my affiliate codes here.

798 views16 comments

Recent Posts

See All
bottom of page