NYR – How To

Have you decided upon a NYR – New Year’s Resolution?

Most of us have one goal in mind- Lose weight! However, it’s a difficult goal.
So how can we keep ourselves motivated?
How the heck are we going to do this?

•Figure out who you are doing it for. There is only one right answer to this question. Lose weight for yourself and only for yourself. Do it to gain a healthy strong heart and soul. Set goals without deadlines. Make sure your goals are reasonable, and most importantly, accomplishable. This way your progress is always progress and setbacks can be maintained. Remember, go slow!
•Stay away from unhealthy ways to lose weight. You will do more bad than good, and it will take even longer to get back to healthy.
•Set a good example for yourself and those around you.
•It doesn’t matter how old you are, how over weight, how under weight, or how tall or short you are. Everyone deserves an optimal body. Love yourself. Ripped abs aren’t going to make you a better person. Sing Katy Perry’s song Unconditionally to yourself every morning. Make it a workout song… Or the drive to the gym song.
•Try making fitness goals to keep yourself motivated. Test yourself to run to a certain time frame, pump a number of reps, or even something as simple as jump a certain distance. Stay away from exercises you don’t enjoy. Be active everyday. If the gym is not for you, it’s okay! Walk outside, do some workout DVDs at home. Yoga and Pilates are perfect for quiet meditation, and intense muscle building. Be creative and have fun!
•Don’t obsess about food! Try new things to keep boredom at bay. There are so many different combinations of foods, recipes, and even healthy snacks you can buy. Browse the internet for healthy recipes, free recipes!
I’ll always post my favorite recipes so keep checking back!
•Don’t give up! Stay positive. It’s okay if you mess up. It doesn’t mean you fail.
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•Go slow and expect slow results. In an era of instant everything, we want instant results, but if you expect instant, then expect to be disappointed. You can’t even expect to lose your bloat in a week. It may take a whole month! Be proud of any accomplishment! 4:8:12
•Embrace everyone and everything that helps you reach your goal!

I hope you have an amazing year! Keep your endurance high and your will power strong! Good luck in 2014!!!

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Weekly Menu & Store List

Here to go! Keep it up!

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Last Minute Gifts

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So, right now at Starbucks you can buy a reusable cup for only $1! It’s dishwasher & microwave safe, plus every time you use it to buy a drink at Starbucks you get $0.10 off! (Hey, ten drinks saves you a $1)
Starbucks isn’t cheap lol
They aren’t flimsy at all. In fact they look & feel like some plastic cups I already have in my kitchen cabinet. They are great for kids too. My daughter loves hot chocolate and can drink from a sippy cup well enough not to spill much when drinking from these cups. I always order her hot chocolate with the low temp steamer so she can gulp it down the instant she gets it in her hands.
Back to the cups…
A deal this good means stock up. I really did go in and order 20 Starbucks cups. They come with lids too! Plus, I may or may not have asked for stoppers & sleeves. *you’ll never know*
These are great for people who don’t drink coffee. Just fill with herbal teas!
I bought that many to keep a back up stock as gifts to give to people for special occasions such as New Year’s, thank-you’s, friend’s birthdays, or this example – family Christmas light-seeing. Every year on Christmas Eve, my family goes driving around to see the ravenous & outrageous Christmas lights. Some people really go all out. Their electric bill must be through the roof.
This year was really fun. My sister found a map of the best lights in town so we followed it. My daughter had a blast. One of the houses was so decked out they even had the grinch passing out candy canes. Cars were lined up to watch the shows – as most of the houses have a radio station in sync with their lights which creates a fun show.
What better way to start a fun evening than with hot cocoa or some caffeine!
For the gifts, I made biscotti cookies (recipe coming soon) wrapped them up in cellophane and a bow, then stuffed the cups full with some of my families favorite drinks: hot chocolate, teas & coffee. Throw in a Starbucks gift card too!
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My family members are bold coffee drinkers, but I thought the blonde Starbucks instant coffees would be perfect for the evening.
When we were all making our drinks, my husband asked, “Why is everyone making coffee? Don’t they want to sleep tonight?”
I replied, “Honey, in this family, caffeine puts us to sleep.”
My dad jumped in and added, “Ain’t that the truth!”
My husbands hates coffee & tea. He got an all-hot-cocoa cup!

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Coffee Body Scrub

20131226-224551.jpgWinter weather dries my skin out quickly; I hate it.
I have to keep up on my skin care so that I prevent ingrown hairs, acne, eczema, or other irritating rashes and skin issues. One of my favorite skin care products is an all natural body scrub! It smells so good you’ll want to eat it.
As a part of my regular skin are regimen, I use it every other day, all over my body, with the exception of my face. I scrub for about five minutes so I know my exfoliation is deep enough to remove the dead skin cells, but not deep enough for damaging effects.
This scrub is just as addicting as coffee in the drink form. Try not to use it every day because your skin needs time to heal in between exfoliations.
Coffee is packed with caffeine which when comes in contact with the skin, it literally melts cellulite. It doesn’t it away, but it breaks up the fat for “repositioning.” By doing so, surrounding cells are flushed and detoxed while blood circulation is intensified. In return, the bumpy appearance of cellulite disappears. Caffeine also constructs blood vessels, so all those little spider veins or lumpy varicose veins can be treated with this scrub. It will diminish them by acting as a vasoconstrictor when used regularly. Whether you drink the stuff or not, wake up to a scoop of coffee – not from a cup, but from the shower!
When buying your coffees, keep in mind that good coffee is for taste, but cheap coffee is for your skin. Don’t buy instant coffee nor do you want decaffinated for your skin. You need the caffeine for its benefits and the gritty grounds to exfoliate.
So that the caffeine is at its peak, make this scrub while your shower is warming up. Keep a container of coffee, sugar, and bottle of olive oil in your bathroom for convenience.
This also makes the perfect neighbor, home-warming, thank-you, or just-because present.
Label the jar, include a craft stick for scooping, & tie a pretty bow around it. It’s like buying them a cup of coffee without the guilt!

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Coffee Body Scrub
Makes one cup of scrub

What you need:
1/4 cup ground coffee
1/4 cup granulated white sugar
A splash of olive oil (not your expensive evoo)

Blend the coffee and sugar together, add a splash (about a tablespoon) of olive oil to moisten the coffee-sugar. Add more if needed till you achieve your ideal consistency.
In the shower, wet your body, step out of the water or save Mother Earth & turn the water off. Scrub sections of our body for one minute each for 5 minutes. (Legs a minute each, arms a minute each, tummy/chest/back/ a minute.)
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Want a super smooth & long lasting shave? Try this trick:
Lather & shave your legs with you choice of shaving cream or body wash. When done, scrub your legs for a deep exfoliation. Rinse & lather your legs again with shaving cream or body wash. Go over your legs with a second quick shave. Rinse again and pay dry. Apply oils or lotions for moisture and nutrients. Shaving this way adds an extra step, but it’s guaranteed to leave your legs silky smooth for at least 3 days. (Try not to get chill bumps haha)

Septic tank? No problem! The ingredients in the scrub are organic matter so the bacteria in your septic tank will break it down. Even they get a cup of joe, you’re welcome!

Not-Really-Fruitcake

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I have the perfect holiday or any day treat for you! It truly is nom nom.
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{Overwhelmed from the holidays that you forgot about those neighbor gifts? Trust me, it’s quite alright. Want to give a homemade gift from your kitchen? Try this recipe out! It is so easy and exceptionally yummy.}
I don’t know anyone who actually likes fruitcake.
But I know plenty of people who love my not-really-fruitcake! It is kind of a veggie/fruitcake. The heart of this dense bread is bananas, paired with carrots and, yes you read that right, sweet potato! Add your “candies” – cranberries and walnuts – and you have not-really-fruitcake! It’s perfect for the holidays when you add spices and fresh ginger. I keep my ginger in the freezer so that it lasts longer.
Now the basis of this recipe is a typical banana bread, but I eliminated the fat. That’s right, no butter or oil! Plus, these are high in vitamin C & A, plus iron! A loaf or 2 muffins are only 338 calories (!!!)
Feel good holiday snack? Oh, yes, please!
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They rise to a perfect top!

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Not-Really-Fruitcake
9 mini loaves; 338 calories per mini loaf

Ingredients:

Dry mixture:
2 1/2 cup white flour
1/2 tbsp of baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tbsp pumpkin spice (optional)

Wet mixture:
4 to 5 ripe bananas, mashed
2 eggs
3/4 cup of white sugar
3/4 cup shredded carrots
3/4 cup shredded sweet potato
1/4 cup cranberries
1/4 cup finely shredded fresh ginger
1/2 cup chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons ground flax

How to:
Spray mini loaf pan or muffin pan with oil. (You can use paper liners with your pan or just scoop batter directly into the pan by spraying oil first- either way works.)
Preheat oven to 350°F.
First, sift together all the dry ingredients into a medium bowl. If you don’t have a sifter, use a wisk to incorporate them together.
In a large bowl, mash your bananas with a fork or potato masher. Then add the sugar and eggs. Mixed with a wooden spoon until well combined. Add carrots, sweet potato, cranberries, flax, pumpkin spice, and walnuts. Pour dry mixture into wet mixture and combine.
Scoop into a muffin tin or mini loaves.
Bake for 20-23 minutes.
Makes 9 mini loaves or 18 muffins.

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Weekly Menu & Store List

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Did I deliver, or did I deliver? lol
Next weeks menu & store list is up & running.
Smoothies: recipes to come, but as you know I live an HerbaLIFE- meaning my smoothies have Herbalife formula one as a base. You could just use yogurt or protein powder as your base if you don’t want to go the Herbalife (although, I strongly advise you do use it since it seriously is so good for you.) Message me for more details if you are interested in trying Herbalife out.
Some of my snacks are from naturebox but keep in mind you can adapt the menu into your own personal liking. I love naturebox because they are organic & vegan! Use me as a reference and get $10 off your next box! I got my first box for only $1.97 on Black Friday.
My kids eat the same snacks as I do so I just buy enough for both of us. My husband doesn’t snack (whaa! I know) he loves some of the same healthy foods I do, but generally he’s pickier than I am so most of the time he gets extra potatoes and meat. Bah, men…
If you haven’t noticed, I created a page off the menu called Go To Menus and Store Lists for quick & easy, grab & go!
Print the pages out – Set your printer settings to 2 pages per page or even 4 pages per page. Save a tree!

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New Years Resolutions – 2014

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Oh right, the new year is coming!
I haven’t even thought about making a New Year’s Resolution since last December. Last year, my only vow was to be more organized. Analyzing the past year, I would say I have come a long way. My car may need a little more work…
Is that any one else’s goal? To be more organized? My only two tips are as follows:

    Clean up immediately after you’re done. Hot glue gun, peanut butter, make up, etc.

    Make bags, tins, baskets, boxes or that ever else you can imagine to separate out everything. Label the containers and try not to combine things.

It shouldn’t cost you much to organize and label your stuff. Reuse everything! You’ll feel so refreshed and ready for spring if you get rid of things you don’t need. My rule is if I haven’t used in the the past 6 months then it gets tossed/donated.

NYRs, New Year’s Resolutions, typically are “spur-of-the-moment” promises we make just to make because we are supposed to.
Who out there actually quits drinking soda after making it a NYR? I can go months with out a diet coke, but I can’t promise my body to never drink one again… Too much pressure! Don’t you raise you eyebrows at me! Dt Coke with a lemon & lime wedge is like my heroine. No worries – it truly is a rare (delicious and desirable) treat.

This coming year my resolution is to transform my body into the healthiest and sexiest it has ever been!

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To be fit, you have to be active and eat right. It truly is a lifestyle and not just a diet. Care more about the health of your body as it is and how it functions, rather than searching the internet to find the quickest way to give your self a thigh gap… Don’t get me started on your thigh gap.
Love yourself naked or dressed. There is nothing prettier than a woman in love, in love with her self and her body!
As a part of my New Year’s Resolution to get into the best shape of my life, I am going to:

    Cut out processed foods and eat as close to the source as possible

    Drink outrageous amounts of water and tea

    Instead of just buying items for convenience from my non perishables list, I’ll try to make them homemade.

    I will feed my children better foods than I eat, and turn their classic favorites into homemade treats

    Eat more organic foods

    Enjoy my favorites, but never feel guilty!

    Control my portions

    Live an active life – teach my children how to be active

Now they say in order to truly be committed and actually be successful, we need a partner. They say 80% of people fail themselves by not being able to complete their resolutions, but we increase our chances if we are to just find a partner in crime.
Who want to partner up with me?
Each week I’ll post my menu and store list for you to follow. Comment & tell me what are your favorite BLDS (breakfast, lunch, dinners & snacks)!

New Love!

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I have found a new love- Nature Box. Insta pic for you!
I am not getting paid to say this nor do they even know that I am writing a post about Nature Box.
On Black Friday, I was browsing the Internet, surfing for some good deals. I actually clicked on a link from my facebook about this miracle box called Nature Box. I was intrigued after reading the info and since it was less than $2 for my first box, I purchased it!
When it came to my door I was surprised at how large the box was. I honestly expected single-serving sized bags of “nature snacks.”
Instead I got 4-9oz bags of really yummy snacks! They are low fat, low sugar, super healthy and even vegan snacks I can have through out the month. Talk about easy hunger killers!
Plus for every box you buy, they send their products out to feed starving children!
Interested? Check it out.

What are these overnight oats everyone is talking about?

Overnight oats are extremely easy & perfect for those who are on the go. A weeks worth can be made in just minutes.
What are they? Plain and simple: oats soaked over night in liquids of your choice then served cold and on the go.
Mixed with some protein powder, overnight oats will fuel you with all the energy you need till lunch time- hunger pain free!
Try this recipe to get addicted started.
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Overnight Oats- Banana Bread
1 serving; 451 calories

Ingredients:
1/2 cup oats
1-2 scoop(s) protein powder – I use Herbalife formula one
8 oz milk, soy milk, or yogurt
1/2 a large banana sliced
1/2 oz crushed walnuts
Cinnamon

How to:
Combine all ingredients into a jar & let soak over night! Enjoy!

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Cute & Easy Elf On The Shelf Ideas

20131211-080833.jpgWe love our elf! He is so fun & creative, but sometimes he runs out of ideas. Sometimes the genius things he thinks of are actually “been there done that” according to most people who follow Pinterest.
We don’t care whether it’s the most popular elf on the shelf idea- if my kids are going to love it then that’s all that matters! Here are some of last years and this years ideas thus far!

Elf’s Arrival: He popped up on the mantel with a elf sized letter and some magic elf seeds. We planted them in sugar, and the next day cookie pops grew!
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This year elf popped up on our front door with a box from the North Pole filled with goodies to motivate us to be good girls an boys.

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The Countdown

Zip line

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Photo shoot with friends

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Reason for the season- present for baby Jesus

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Drew a picture

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Got stuck in a cup

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Knew we were going to the grocery store so he made his own list & buckled up!

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Made us pancakes

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This one requires explaining: we wanted to make cookies but didn’t have any brown sugar to do so… The next day elf magically restocked the jar!

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We are a huge peanut butter family. A rare treat is chocolate dipped pap pins with peanut butter- Elf is obviously a pb lover too!

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Every picture in our house had mustaches drew on it

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Caught in the bird cage

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Hanging from the ceiling fan with candy canes

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