Tasty Vegan Baked Goods in Phoenix – Treehouse Bakery

As I stated in another review last month, once we became settled in Phoenix I got into the habit of not seeking out new vegan options simply out of laziness.  However, in the past month I’ve really focused on hitting up new locations.  I’m not real sure how I did that with all of my crazy travel adventures but good vegan food will do that to you!

If you haven’t figured it out yet, I have a SERIOUS sweet tooth.  I need my sweets! One location I’ve had my eye on for awhile has been Treehouse Bakery.  Per their site:

‘We create hand-crafted artisan vegan cupcake, cookies, muffins, pies, and uncheesecakes with all natural and organic ingredients whenever possible. All of our items are completely vegan, egg, and dairy free.’

Treehouse Bakery

Unfortunately I’ve never made a point to get down to their location before they closed for the day.  However, about a month ago we stopped to have DH’s ears pierced at our favorite location in Phoenix, HTC Piercing, and got to talking about vegan food with our fave piercer Marilyn.  She said, “You HAVE to go to Treehouse,’ and went on and on how she loves their delicious treats and how she takes her son to Treehouse on a weekly basis.  So, it was about time we made the stop.  So we did….the next morning.

Treehouse Bakery

Located on Grand Ave in the Arts & Small Business District, Treehouse has taken an old storefront and converted it into their own little bakery.  This area of Phoenix has a worn out old-time feel that is really making it’s way through revitalization, which is something I love to see.

Treehouse Bakery

Treehouse Bakery

We were welcomed with an abundance of tasty treats to choose from.  Not only do they have your basic vanilla or chocolate cupcakes, but they always have treats with their own special twist. Margarita, rocky road, chocolate chip, churro, or strawberry champagne cupcakes anyone? The list really is never ending.  In addition, they also have freshly baked cookies, coffee cake, donuts, homemade pop tarts, and cinnamon rolls.  ALL VEGAN! (P.S. They have gluten-free options too!)

Treehouse Bakery

Honestly, it was so hard to choose that I went with several options….and none disappointed.

Something I’ve come to expect and accept is that when you find vegan delicacies chances are you’ll be paying a premium.  That’s not the case with Treehouse.  I was able to get everything I ordered for the price I’ve paid for one baked good at another one of my favorite vegan locations in Phoenix.  Not bashing, just keeping it real.Treehouse Bakery

Sadly, Treehouse Bakery isn’t too close to our home (which may be a good thing!),  but I definitely plan to return and would highly recommend anyone stop by.  Whether you’re vegan or not, if you have a sweet tooth chances are you’ll love it!

Treehouse Bakery
1348 W Roosevelt St
Phoenix, AZ 85007

Closed Monday
Tues-Sat 10-6
Sun 10-2

Credit cards accepted


Keep Smiling and Be Grateful =)


Looking for more vegan food in Phoenix and beyond? Check out my Vegan Travel, Reviews, & Recipes.

Valley Fever Signs, Symptoms, and Facts

Full disclosure: Compensation for this content was provided by Pet Vet Care Centers. As a vet tech I’m pretty in tune to what’s going on in the pet world, whereas many may not necessarily be aware of the threats that are out there.  So, when PetVet Care Centers contacted me in regards to a sponsored post I thought it was a topic worth sharing. 

It’s no surprise that our furry, feathered, and scaly creatures mean the world to DH and me. Keeping them healthy is of utmost importance.  Of course diseases and sickness can happen anywhere. However, depending on a variety of factors, certain diseases may be more prevalent in a specific locale.

For example, heartworm disease.  While heartworm isn’t a huge threat here in Phoenix, if your pet is not on preventative in New Orleans, they will get heartworm.  During my time as a veterinary technician in New Orleans I saw a minimum of 1 pet that tested positive each week. Seriously. Get those critters tested and on heartworm preventative!  Remember, it’s always a great idea to have a discussion with your veterinarian about what illnesses and diseases may be of concern in your region.

Prior to moving to Phoenix two years ago we had never heard of Valley Fever.  However, when we experienced our first haboob (read: massive dust/sand storm) in the first week of our arrival we received a quick crash course.  Not only does it affect pets, but humans as well.

HaboobHaboob Rolling into Phoenix – Photo Credit: Arizona Highways

Since the most recent haboob rolled through Phoenix just 2 weeks ago this is the perfect time to discuss the ins and outs of Valley Fever.

Don’t miss the clickable coupon after the article for $20 off your pet’s valley fever test at one of PetVet Care Centers’ many locations throughout the valley!

PetVet Care Centers


By Yvonne Lederer

Recent sand storms stirred up more than clouds of dust Arizona. Veterinarians have been dealing with growing health concerns and tackling Valley Fever.

Co-owner of Scottsdale Ranch Animal Hospital in Scottsdale and general practitioner, Dr. Richard Stolper was born and raised in Arizona, said, “It is now Monsoon season in the Valley of the Sun. That means that we will see a lot of late evening storms, including lots of dust. Valley Fever fungal spores in the dust will once again be inhaled by dogs in higher numbers over the next 2 – 3 months. But it usually takes about 1–4 months before the dog shows any clinical signs of Valley Fever infection,”

“It’s Valley Fever until proven otherwise,” said Krishna Volante, certified Vet Technician at Riggs Road Veterinary Clinic. “We always test for it first because it is so prevalent here.”

What Is It?

Valley Fever (coccidioidomycosis) is a disease caused by a fungus, Coccidioides, which lives in the dirt, and travels in the air, around us all the time. The lightweight spores are breathed in. Once breathed in, they cannot be breathed out and attach themselves far in the lungs. Once in the lung, they fill up with more endospores and rupture, sending tinier endospores throughout the rest of the blood and lymph systems, stimulating an acute inflammatory response, disrupting blood flow to tissue, and leading to necrosis.

Dogs comprise the majority of animal cases of Valley Fever, according to Top Doc Scott McComb of Crossroads Veterinary Hospital in Gilbert, AZ. McComb, who was awarded the “Young Practitioner of the Year Award” by the Arizona State Veterinary Medical Association in 2006, has been watching the epidemic rise in numbers since he began practicing in Arizona in 2000.

“I’ll bet at this hospital we run a Valley Fever test every day. A common scenario is right after people put in a pool or live next to a housing development where they’re grading. Since 1990, I suppose, since the construction boom it’s pretty common.” said Dr. Stephen Gilson head of Sonora Veterinary Specialists in Phoenix, AZ.

According to CDC studies, Valley Fever affects more people than West Nile Virus, and has received only a small fraction of the funding for research. Additionally, two-thirds of the country’s cases occur in Arizona. In the U.S. in 2012, more than 70% of cases were from Arizona.

So what are the symptoms you should look for in your pet?

According to Arizona Native and longtime valley resident Dr. Stephanie Howton, of Companion Pet Clinic in Gold Canyon, AZ, you can narrow the symptoms down to the Top 3 Signs of Valley Fever:

  • Fever
  • Lameness
  • Cough

Sue Marvin, Hospital Manager for Scottsdale Ranch Animal Hospital added, “If your animal has a persistent cough or persistent limp, get to your vet immediately. It only takes a few minutes to take the test and 3 days for results.

Coupon - Valley Fever TestClick on coupon to enlarge and print

Present printed coupon to any of the following locations….

Companion Pet Clinic of Arizona
Gold Canyon, AZ

Crossroads Veterinary Hospital
Gilbert, AZ

Riggs Road Veterinary Clinic
Chandler, AZ

Scottsdale Ranch Animal Hospital
Scottsdale, AZ

Sonora Veterinary Specialists
Pheonix, AZ | Litchfield Park, AZ

 Keep Smiling and Be Grateful =)

Vegan Breakfast In Phoenix – Scramble

As I’ve said previously, since going vegan DH and I rarely go out to breakfast. It’s not like I don’t eat breakfast, it’s just so hard to find locations that have legit vegan options….other than a tiny bowl of fruit.  Enter Scramble.

AZ Scramble

After scoping out Scramble’s menu several times online we took the chance and gave it a whirl.  Their separate Vegan Breakfast section currently lists 4 options. The biggest draw for me?  Vegan French Toast! With their menu clearly marked with vegan, spicy, healthy choice, and even travel well options, they really lay it all out.

AZ Scramble

We were warmly greeted at the door by an employee and entered their restaurant to the typical hustle and bustle of a breakfast eatery. Scramble has a hip modern feel that is still warm and welcoming, and they pride themselves on using local farmers and vendors when possible.  With their counter service style it’s speedier than a typical restaurant but there’s still no feel of rush.  For those looking to stay in the know, several televisions host the news and free wifi is available.

AZ Scramble

AZ Scramble

After ordering at the counter our food was quickly delivered to our table of choice and we dug in.  While it was a little weird to have baguette style bread instead of the typical Texas toast, it was still delicious.  Oh French Toast, I love you.  I heard absolutely no complaints from DH and I think he finished his entree before me.  Looks like we have a winner!

AZ Scramble

As usual, since we don’t live in the heart of Phoenix this does require a tiny drive, but it’s great to know that we once again have a great breakfast option where we can both enjoy our food equally as much.  And with sides beginning at $2 and entrees averaging $6-7 it’s comparable to most restaurants.

Scramble – Phoenix
9832 N 7th Street
Phoenix, Arizona 85020
6am – 2pm daily
phone 602.374.2294
fax 602.374.4457

Scramble – Scottsdale
6590 N Scottsdale Rd
Scottsdale, Arizona 85253
6am – 2pm daily
Phone 480.404.7264
fax 480.404.7265

Keep Smiling and Be Grateful =)


Looking for more vegan food in Phoenix and beyond? Check out my Vegan Travel, Reviews, & Recipes.

Married At 18

Today DH and I celebrate 12 years of marriage.  12 years?!  Yep.  We went out for a nice dinner Saturday evening, but other than that it’s  pretty much business as usual.  Real fancy, huh?  Our low-key way of doing things has worked for 12 years so we might as well stick with it, right?

For our 10th anniversary I shared our 10 Years of Adventure (and boy have they been interesting!).  My 11th anniversary post was really all about celebrating our first anniversary of our move to Arizona and reminiscing about the hard fought but successful year we had.

This year I thought I’d let you in on some facts about our engagement and wedding….

1 – DH and I met when I was 14 years old and became high school sweethearts.  On our wedding day I was 18 years old and DH was 20.


2 – DH asked for my parent’s blessing before proposing on the eve of my 18th birthday while he was home on leave from the Marines.  The first thing they asked? “What do you plan to do with your life and how will you support one another?” Needless to say DH walked away with a non-answer from my parents and didn’t propose when he had planned. Long story short, my parents and I had a long discussion several weeks later and they said, “Well, we never said no!” Gah! When I visited DH in New Orleans for the Marine Corps Birthday Ball 3 months later I hoped I’d come home with a ring on my finger…

Side note: As we headed to dinner last night we came across this song while listening to Microsoft Nokia Mix Radio.  Had to laugh because it was so apropos.

3 – While walking through the French Quarter in New Orleans I kept thinking to myself, “I wonder if he”ll propose here…” Did he?  No. He waited until we were watching a movie in his barracks room.  He asked to take a look at the ring he had given me the previous year. Instead of placing it back on my finger he replaced it with my engagement ring without me knowing and asked, “Will you marry me?” After so many discussions on the topic I thought he was pulling my leg…until I felt my hand and realized he was serious.  No grandiose proposal.  No getting down on one knee. No long, ‘ode’ to me or our relationship. Simple and straight to the point.  Just the way I like it.  DH had my engagement ring for 6 months before he proposed. That may be some sort of record.


4 – I remember looking ahead in the calendar to find dates for our wedding that held some meaning to us since we expected to have a long engagement.  Due to DH’s health issues he was slated to have a honorable medical discharge so we would no longer have to be apart.  When that didn’t happen our plans changed. After 1.5 years of having a long distance relationship (remember, this was before texting, skype, and Facebook)  there was no way in heck we were waiting. When I got off of the phone with DH I  told my parents the situation and said, “We’re getting married in 3 months.”  Thankfully they chose to fully support our decision.  And when I said, “We can just go to the courthouse,” my mom was the first one to say, “No. If you’re getting married, we’re going to do this right.” So we did.

5 – DH almost didn’t make it home for our wedding.  The day before he was set to go on leave his master gunnery sergeant threatened to rescind his leave. (Oh the joys of military mind games).  We didn’t know if he was really going to come home until he was on that plane.

6 – Normal couples would have multiple pre-marital group counseling sessions.  Since DH was only coming home on leave for our wedding, and we’d return immediately to New Orleans, we had 6 solid hours of private counseling on one day. If you think that sounds uncomfortable…it was.

7 – Our processional was Bach’s Air on G String and our recessional was Fats Domino’s Walking To New Orleans.  We didn’t have a first dance, but I created 2 cds of ‘our songs’ that we played throughout the festivities.


8 - My wedding dress was $100. After trying on several expensive wedding dresses I just so happened to glance at the clearance rack and saw ‘The One” hanging there.  I didn’t care that it was a size 12 when I was a size 4. Alterations could fix that.  Add in another $100 for alterations and I walked away with a $200 wedding dress. Instead of having a huge ceremony we chose to get married on the lake with our immediate family members present. Since we didn’t have to rent space our only real costs were my dress, DH’s tuxedo, cake, bouquets (which I made), and rental chairs.  My sister had a connection to someone that was willing to capture photos at a low cost, which was her wedding gift to us. In the end we didn’t spend more than $500 for our special day.

Wedding Cake

9 - Our wedding night was spent at a hotel in a neighboring city. We went out to dinner at Friday’s and Men In Black was on cable tv that night (Why in the world I remember that, I have no idea….) We never had a real honeymoon which is an excuse we still use to justify our ongoing travels.

10 - We had our first big ‘fight’ only 2 days after our wedding. Neither of us remember why and I’m happy to say that it was our first and last big argument.

Based on the reaction of those not recognizing our wedding day, including most of our extended families, I’m sure many thought it was just puppy love and that it wouldn’t last.  We may have been young and had a small, inexpensive wedding, but we’ve never needed anything fancy as long as we had each other….which still holds true to this day. Because it’s not about the wedding, it’s about the marriage.

Keep Smiling and Be Grateful =)