Maple Date Bars

Maple Date Bars

Guess what?

This weekend is my birthday!!

I am going to be 29 years old. I can hardly even believe it!

Almost 30.

And you know what? That is okay.

I am alright with getting older. I don’t see getting older as a bad thing. I like to look back into my years and see what I have accomplished and what I have learned.

Since I am almost 30 I have looked back over the past 9 years. I have had some MAJOR stuff happen.

My 20s:

  • I graduated from one of the best public colleges, Penn State University and earned a degree from the Smeal College of Business, which is one of the most prestigious business programs in the country
  • I got my bunny, Gizzy
  • I moved from PA to CT and started a better life
  • I started a full time job with an annual salary and have gotten promoted and received raises every year since I have worked at the company (5 years)
  • I bought a car all on my own with no outside help & now fully OWN that car in full with no loans
  • I had the strength & respect for myself to end an abusive relationship and start living my own life even though I had no idea if anyone would ever love me again
  • I have continued to dance with a group, Eclipse, that has helped me build so many friendships that I know I will have for many years to come
  • I started, which has become such an outlet for me to express my inner self and my love of all things, and food of course
  • I walked 60 miles & raised thousands of dollars for Susan G. Komen to fight breast cancer and it was one of the most rewarding things I have ever done
  • I still have both of my parents in my life, even though one is rather sick. I cherish all the moments I get with them
  • I met the love of my life, Patrick
  • I bought a house with Patrick
  • I remodeled that 2800sqft house with Patrick from the ground up and it was such an amazing feeling of accomplishment when we finished even the smallest of tasks
  • Patrick proposed to me and I accepted
  • Patrick and I are getting married 10/25/2014
  • I am getting in the best shape of my life and have learned to love myself for who I am (which is still a struggle every day, but at least I am trying and accepting who you are makes life so much easier)
  • I still have the same best friends I have had for over 8 years (some much longer) now and plan to keep them forever
  • I have learned that women who are self-confident are sexy and I strive to be that way
  • I have traveled to Mexico, Canada, California, Washington, Kansas, Missouri, Florida, Pennsylvania, Indiana, North Dakota, Texas, Oklahoma, Illinois and Portugal.
  • I have learned not to give a f*ck what other people think and do what makes me happy even if that means the people closest to me might not understand or even approve
  • I have learned that believing in yourself, no matter what, is one of the strongest motivators
  • I have learned that food is such a powerful way to bring people together from all over, throw a dinner party in your town…see what happens and how many bonds you make
  • I have learned that life is worth living each and every day to be the person you have always wanted to be and to never give up hope, but accept who you are and embrace that and let others really know you
  • I have learned that aging isn’t scary, it is just another lesson and journey

I have done a lot! I don’t know if my 30s will bring so many large moments in my life, but I am grateful for what I have now.

I am glad that I have learned what I have, done the things I have and am finally learning who I am and want to be.

I won’t be around this weekend so don’t expect any love notes from me, Patrick is taking me away to Simon Pearce up in Vermont.  Both for a meal and for the awesome glass work.

In honor of “dates” enjoy some lovely date bars with me. NOMS


Maple Date Bars
Recipe Type: Breakfast
Author: RavieNomNoms
Prep time:
Cook time:
Total time:
Serves: 24
Healthy morning snack!
  • 2 cups pitted dates
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon grated lemon rind
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup Organic Applesauce (no sugar added)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 cup Raw Vegan Protein Powder
  • 1 cup old fashioned oats
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Cooking spray
  1. Combine dates, water, and maple syrup in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Bring to a boil; cook 12 minutes or until most liquid is absorbed, stirring frequently. (Mixture will look like jam.) Stir in rind and cool completely.
  2. Preheat oven to 400°.
  3. Whisk apple sauce and sugar together until smooth.
  4. Place flour, protein, oats, baking soda and salt. Stir mixture with whisk. Add the flour mixture into the sugar mixture slowly stirring with a spoon. This mixture will be crumbly.
  5. Press 2 cups flour mixture into bottom of a 13 x 9-inch baking pan coated with cooking spray. Lightly sprinkle with one tablespoon olive oil.
  6. Spread date mixture over flour mixture. Sprinkle with remaining flour mixture and remaining olive oil on top.
  7. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely in pan on a wire rack.
Serving size: 1 bar Calories: 125 Fat: 2.1 Carbohydrates: 26.1 Sugar: 15.4 Sodium: 42 Fiber: 2.1 Protein: 2.8 Cholesterol: 0
Original Recipe can be found at Cooking Light [url href=””]here.[/url][br][br]I reduced the amount of sugar and added in more dates to these for my own personal preference. [br][br]Wrap these moist bars individually, or place them in a cookie tin between layers of wax or parchment paper.

 Bye Bye 20s – Here I come 30s

Kate Neal Photo-17

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  1. I wish I were turning 29 :/ I’m turning THIRTY this year and feel like it’s the end of the world LOL. Happy, Happy BIRTHDAY! I could eat these bars day and night.

    • RavieNomNoms says:

      The world won’t end! You are in great shape, you have an amazing family, and have so much going for you! 30 is going to be awesome 🙂

  2. Raven, what an impressive overview of the past decade. You’re well-prepared for your 30s: you embrace life with zeal and it shows. I think you’ll find autumn is a splendid time of year to marry.
    Best wishes my friend, and Happy Birthday weekend! Please pass the maple date bars, will you?

    • RavieNomNoms says:

      Thank you!! What a nice compliment! I am so excited about Autumn, I have always wanted to get married in the Fall!

  3. Those bars look and sound incredible! I’ve been looking up some bar recipes lately trying to find some to make, I might have to give yours a shot! Be sure to stop by my link party today, #OmNomNomFriday, and share your fantastic creations 🙂

    Happy Blogging!
    Happy Valley Chow

  4. The day will come when you will realize 29/30 is oh so young lol. I’m going to be 50 this year. YIKES! It sounds like your 20’s have been a wonderful time and I’m willing to be that your 30’s, when you get there, are going to be even more fantastic

    Now…to turn my printer on and print out this recipe. YUM! I love maple!

    • RavieNomNoms says:

      That is wonderful! Honestly, I am not afraid of aging. So far, as I have gotten older my life has just gotten richer. I am looking forward to the next years to come!

  5. Your 20’s were marvelous…you accomplished so much. But I know your 30’s will be even better! Enjoy Simon Pearce…love that shop in VT! And I”d love these date bars, too…scrumptious!

  6. Happy birthday! What a wonderful decade…and you still have one more year to go! You have such a sweet and beautiful presence, and I’m so glad that I know you. And these bars? Well they look perfect, my friend. Thank you for sharing them!

    • RavieNomNoms says:

      Thank you so much Monet 🙂 You always have such sweet comments and they always make me feel so bright 🙂

  7. Happy Birthday! Those are some big lessons and accomplishments. You’re right – getting older isn’t scary. I turned 30 in 2013 and its been the best year so far! Cheers to all the good that’s to come!

  8. I think 30’s were my favorite years, so the best is yet to come for you. Happy Birthday! You have accomplished a lot and I’m sure your parents are proud of you. I hope you and Patrick had a great weekend. If you think you don’t give an F about those opinions, just wait till your 40’s!

  9. Raven, thank you for sharing your past decade in review. The past can be hard to overcome, like an obstacle we didn’t know that we could beat. But looking back through teary eyes and maybe a little out of breath it feels good to smile and see how far we have come. Then to look forward to the next adventure! I hope you had an incredibly wonderful birthday, beautiful.

    P.S.- I love the looks of those date bars! They’re gonna happen here. I pinned them for later.