Category Archives: Uncategorized

Simple Suppers

I am not sure about you, but I love simplicity in my day to day life!  Sure I spend more time on the weekends with clothing, makeup, meals, etc. – BUT – during the week I like to keep things in life as simple as possible.

When I am finished with a busy work day followed by gym time, spending hours in the kitchen to prepare food is not what I want to do.  I am usually starving by the time I finish a workout.  Which means that I want my food to ready in a snap!  Sure it is so easy to run through a drive through, pick up an order, or even grab something quick and easy in the grocery…..but let’s be real – how healthy is that?  I have several go to options that I like to keep things simple while also being healthy and tasty.

One thing I really rely on weekly are what we call bowl meals.  Most everyone has heard of this, but I am talking beyond salads/soups/chili.  I am talking about literally just throwing what is available into a bowl.  I always make sure that each bowl contains all three required nutrients – protein, carbs, and healthy fats.  It is not unusual to place meat of choice, grain of choice, and roasted veggies into a bowl then top with seasonings, oil/avocado, or a sauce.  I stir it all together and dig in!

So a few of my weekly staples that I like to have on hand include:

Ground Beef – saute with salt, pepper, onion, and garlic.  Grilled/Roasted Chicken – drizzle with an oil and add seasoning.  Grilled roasted fish/shrimp – again just drizzle with oil and seasoning.  Cook a batch of each on Sunday’s to place in the fridge – from here you can reheat with any seasoning/sauces you would like.  So what are the options for this?

  • tacos/burritos
  • salads
  • pasta/sauce
  • stir fry
  • mixed with roasted veggies
  • on top of toast

Some other items I like to have on hand in the fridge weekly include roasted veggies, rice/quinoa cooked in broth, boiled eggs, raw veggies, greens for salads, tuna, olives, deli meats, and variety of cheeses.

Because let’s be honest – sometimes a cheese board is dinner!

 

 

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Filed under DINNER, favorites, healthy eating, inspiration, Uncategorized

Friday’s Five

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Starbucks app – this time of year (end of school craziness) it really is a lifesaver!

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Under Eye Bags – need I say more?

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Self Tanner – because bronze is attractive, skin cancer is not

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Truly Spiked and Sparkling – my new go to summer drink

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Sweet Rolls – because it is already “beyond summer” in Louisiana

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Here is an apology….

Good morning guys!  I know I have been on a hiatus for a several weeks now.  It wasn’t intentional, I promise!  To be honest I was sick (still am) a few weeks ago with nasty allergy/sinus stuff……you know since Louisiana decided to start spring in February and bloom!  Then I went on a cruise for some much needed R&R.  Once docking back in LA – yep you guessed it!  More sinus/allergy crap because I was back in the land of pollen.

So while I had intentions of posting, I just wasn’t feeling it!  Seeing as my little blog here is hobby only and not monetized, thankfully I didn’t feel the pressure to post.  So I took the time I needed to get back to me 🙂

So in my attempt to offer you guys a sincere apology I am going to share a recipe with you!  Here are a few of my favorite things.

A little Breakfast……..

Pear & Mozzarella Stuffed French Toast

  • 2 slices cinnamon raisin Ezekiel bread
  • 1/2 small pear, sliced thin
  • shredded mozzarella cheese
  • juice sweetened jam (I use Crofter’s juice sweetened super fruit spread…..awesome!)
  • 1 egg white
  • 1T almond milk
  • cinnamon
  • vanilla
  • coconut butter
  1. Preheat griddle and spray with non-stick spray
  2. Mix the egg white, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon in a shallow dish
  3. Spread the jam on one slice of the bread, layer pair slices, layer on the cheese, and place 2nd slice of bread on top.
  4. Carefully dip each side of the bread in the egg mixture.
  5. Grill until golden brown on both sides and cheese melts

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A little lunch/dinner……..

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Grilled Chicken Pasta Salad

  • 2 small chicken breasts, grilled
  • romaine lettuce
  • tomato
  • cucumber
  • red & yellow peppers
  • carrots
  • quinoa pasta
  • salad dressing of choice

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A little snack……….

Cowboy Cookies

  • 1+1/3c unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1t baking powder
  • 1t baking soda
  • 1/4t salt
  • 1 + 1/3c rolled oats
  • 1/2c brown sugar
  • 1/2c white sugar/turbinado sugar/organic sugar (yeah you get the point)
  • 1/2c chopped pecans
  • 1c semi-sweet chocolate chips (if you are making jar cookies then you stop here)
  • 1/2c (1 stick) melted butter
  • 1 large egg
  • 1t vanilla extract Preheat oven to 350*, and spray a cookie sheet with non-stick spray
  1. Mix together the butter, egg, and vanilla
  2. Stir in the cookie mix (or remaining ingredients if not from a jar mix)
  3. Roll the mixture into ball with hands and place two inches apart on cookie sheet
  4. Bake in oven for 11-13 minutes, cool on a cooling rack

Of course you will want to hide these cookies because they are just that darn good.  I love to have them when they are still warm with a nice glass of almond milk 🙂

All three of the above recipes are things that I really enjoy making this time of year, and my kiddos love them too!  Please enjoy and comment below if you try them!

~Be Fierce, Be Fabulous

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Filed under baking, Breakfast, CHOCOLATE, DESSERT, DINNER, favorites, Fruit, Uncategorized

Enjoying Everyday Living

Are you “stuck” in a mundane daily life?  I will be honest with you guys……I have been!  I am working very hard to turn that around.

Just think about your daily life.  Your daily life is the ways in which you act, think, and feel on a daily basis.  Now think about the meaning of mundane – lacking interest or excitement; dull.  My daily life has been pretty dull.  Sure there have been days when I have had excitement.  Great things have happened, but let’s be honest those days are few and far between.  Day to day my life consists of the same routines.  The same outcomes.  Just the same…..but I am tired of feeling that my day is mundane.  I want to enjoy my life!

As you know I have been on a journey (yes a journey because this takes time and effort) to better myself not only physically; but emotionally and spiritually as well.  All is in an effort to simplify my life and enjoy everyday living.  So today I would like to share with you some of the things I have been doing daily to make my everyday not so mundane.  To be able to say that I enjoy everyday living!

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I started by making a list of the things that I enjoy the most.  In order to enjoy your daily life it needs to be filled with the things that you love to do/have.  Here is my list:

  • Morning self-care routine
  • Waking an hour earlier to complete my morning routine
  • Enjoying a favorite coffee
  • Daily devotional
  • Daily bible reading/prayer
  • Stocking some of my favorite teas to drink throughout the day
  • Following a well-rounded, healthy, clean eating plan
  • Surrounding my space with things that make me happy – pictures, scriptures, quotes, etc.
  • Exercising/gym time
  • Evening self-care routine
  • Limiting social media
  • Evening reading
  • Journaling
  • Evening cup of Natural Calm before bed

Are all of these things basic, everyday habits?  Yes of course they are!  I have found that if I make sure to get all of the things that I enjoy into my day, it is no longer mundane.  While it is a routine (I am a creature of habit) they are all things that make me happy.

Before this I would just wake up, wash my face, make some coffee, go to get dressed, and head to work.  Then I would go through my day eating whatever I had time for, go home to start dinner, and immediately jump in to cleaning house/laundry.  Finally cleaning up after the day to jump into bed and do it all again.

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I will be honest and say that this has taken time to put into action.  I started by sitting down and making a list of things that I would enjoy daily, or things that I would like to start incorporating into my day.  I also read several books on various topics to gain insight/ideas.  After making my list, I simply put things into action.   Here are some things that I did in order to ensure that I would follow my list:

  • I invested in some great natural beauty products
  • I buy my favorite coffee blends or flavored creamers just for me.
  • I buy my favorite teas (like matcha) so I can enjoy them daily.
  • I pre-plan my weekly meals to ensure healthy eating.
  • I purchased a new bible so that I could highlight/write in it instead of using an app
  • I try to get into the gym daily, even if it is only for 20-30 minutes
  • I have vision boards now in both my closet, on my fridge, and one hanging above my desk at work
  • I allow myself to check social media 4 times daily – morning, lunch, while having my afternoon snack, and once again while enjoying my evening bath.
    • Disclaimer: Sometimes I do check this more frequently if my day is not as busy, but I try to stick with this routine so I am not sucked into a world of negativity – because let’s be honest, social media is so full of negativity.
  • I have unfollowed many people/sights that are not fulfilling to my life on social media
  • I have made a habit of reading before bed – mainly concentrating on self-help books lately
  • Taking time to journal and reflect on my day – along with this I also have an ongoing list in my iPhone of something good that happened that day. Every night before bed I add something good from the day to the list.  At the end of the year I will be able to reflect on all of the blessings I had!

Most of these things are just second nature to me now.  If you are just starting this, and you decide to use my method of listing (I am obsessed with lists), you may find yourself having to actually check things off until they are habit.  I did have to make it into a to-do list when I started.  After some time, this list will become the norm. You will complete the list without even thinking about it, but it will make your day more enjoyable since you are doing/incorporating things that you enjoy!

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Sounds simple right?  It does sound simple, but be prepared to have to consciously focus on this for a little while.  It is so easy to slip back into the same old routine of aimlessly going through your day.  You know the saying…..sometimes the simplest things are the hardest!

So leave me a comment below on things that you currently like or would like to incorporate into your daily life to make if more enjoyable.  I am always looking for inspiration from others, and I love to communicate with my readers!

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Waste Nothing

In an attempt to better myself I have been working hard to clean up my diet.  If you are a long time reader, you know that I was a big clean eating advocate.  After all that is what the start of the blog was based on.  However, life happened!  Job changes, schedule changes, babies turning into teenagers…..all the things that make slipping into old, yucky habits resurface!

So I went back in my archives, re-read some books that I had from the start of my journey long ago, and made my plan to become a healthier version of me.  Let’s be honest it all has to start with a plan.  As the saying goes – “If you fail to plan, plan to fail”.  Part of the planning process is writing out a menu, deciding what snacks will be needed for the week, and making your grocery list.  Without that list anything and everything will end up in the cart!

Now to make life easier I try to stick with the same breakfast for several days.  This is so I can pre-cook it to save time in the mornings.  I also have to eat pretty early in order to make my 3 hour between meals work with my scheduled lunch break at school.  Having breakfast in the refrigerator is key to my 5:15 meal time!

 

One of my favorite go to breakfasts is the breakfast bowl.  No not the one you get a Waffle House with eggs, hash browns, cheese, etc.  A much healthier version.  The varieties for this is endless.  Choose a meat, choose a veggie, and put that on a bed of greens!  I tend to stick with ground sausage, but you can use links as well.  Eggs are also a great addition if you eat them.  Veggie options are endless, but I will tell you know that sweet potatoes are my favorite, and of course you can add any toppings/sauces that you wish.

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For this week’s bowls broccoli is on the menu.  I purchased a couple heads of broccoli to roast for dinner one night, and in keeping with my simplifying life attitude you waste nothing.  What do I mean?  Do not throw those broccoli stalks away!  Oh no, those stalks are good and nutritious!    So use them in other dishes like sautés, soups, and slaws!

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You will need to cut the ends off.  They are kind of like asparagus, the very end of the stalk is tough and nasty.  Slice the stalk at the point of tenderness – in other words do not force the cut.  If your knife doesn’t cut through easily, then cut that baby a little higher.  Once you get the ends off take a vegetable peeler and give them a once over…..then chop, steam, or process.  Also makes a great broccoli rice J

  • Broccoli stalks (2)
  • Turkey sausage (ground)
  • Spinach & Arugula mix
  • Ghee
  • Salt
  • Pepper

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Once my stems were chopped I placed them in a pan with some ghee, salt, and pepper.  Gave them a little sauté, added my pre-cooked ground turkey sausage, then divided the mixture into separate bowl on top of a spinach and arugula mix (my fav).  When I wake up in the morning I pop the bowl in the microwave, which steams the greens, and breakfast is ready in 1.5 minutes.  You can’t get any easier than that!

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Reflection

  • Serious thought or consideration

You may be wondering why I am starting a blog post with a definition, especially one that is so commonly known to all???

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Everyone typically spends time before/after the New Year reflecting on their life, goals, decisions, etc.  After all it is a new year and a great time to make a change.  My change goes a little deeper than evaluating one’s goals.  My change has to deal with evaluating my heart, my emotions, and my outlook on life.

I am so very sorry to my loyal readers for not posting in the past few months –I have to admit to you guys that my heart just was not in it!

As you know I had to endure the loss of my father last October.  This came after a grueling six months of watching him deteriorate from liver cancer.  Needless to say it was a very stressful and emotional year!

Losing a loved one is the most stressful event to have to go through, and it throws you into an emotional crisis.  I didn’t want to write any more.  I didn’t want to share.  If I am being honest I really didn’t want to do much of anything for a while.  I tried to ignore the pain.  Pretend that all was right in my life.  Carry on with my day to day activities as if nothing in the world had changed.  That was exhausting.  Just getting out of bed to go to work, try to have a “normal” day, and carry on my family responsibilities was a task.  To even think about sharing something on a blog was almost impossible.  I would sit at the computer with all intentions of typing out a post only to stare at the blank screen.  Absolutely nothing came to mind, and when things did come to mind I just didn’t want to “talk” about them.

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Ignoring the pain was getting me nowhere.  You have to acknowledge the pain in order to heal.  As I sat in a restaurant on a date night with my husband shortly after Christmas I realized I couldn’t ignore it anymore.  Half way through our meal something was mentioned that made me think about the state my life was in, it took everything inside of me to make it through the remainder of that meal before the water works were turned on.  I cried……..for two days!

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That is when I realized that ignoring my feelings was only prolonging the grieving process.  I had to accept it and face it in order to get myself back on track.  I had to REFLECT on what had happened, and the affect the loss had on me.  Which is what I did.

I have taken the past couple of weeks to really work on getting back to a better version of me.  I have read a couple of books, started opening myself to God again, and really doing my best to move forward.  I have made several changes with my daily routines that have helped me to move forward.  For the most part I feel that I am finally at peace with the loss. I am ready to get back out into the world.  To share, to love, and to enjoy everything that this life has to offer.

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The emotions will still creep up on occasion, like when a certain song is playing, but now I allow myself time to be sad.  I allow myself to cry and not fight the tears.  Then I say a small prayer thanking God for giving me grace, being by my side, and for calling my dad to Heaven with him.  Because if I am being honest – that is the absolute best place he could be!

 

 

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Fall Bucket List

Happy fall ya’ll!  So in my last post I talked a little about fall fashion, and posted a link to some of the items I have purchased for the upcoming season.  Which I have not been able to wear since that post!  So to keep the fall theme going in my life – because you know I am a little jealous of those that actually get to experience fall – I have decided to make a bucket list of all the “fall like” things I want to do I am able to do in Louisiana!

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  1.  Decorate the house/porch/patio
  2. Go to a football game
  3. Make apple cider
  4. S more’s by the fire-pit
  5. Go to a corn maze
  6. Paint pumpkins
  7. Make homemade apple sauce
  8. Go on a picnic
  9. Have a chili bar for dinner
  10. Make caramel apples
  11. Bake pumpkin bread
  12. Take a family bike ride
  13. Homemade hot cocoa
  14. Host Thanksgiving
  15. Give thanks and be greatful

 

As you can see it is a very short list with a lot of cooking type activities……this is what happens when you live in a place that doesn’t have cool weather, changing leaves, or apple orchards!

Hopefully you guys will be able to enjoy some awesome fall activities with your families!

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Fall has arrived,

But truth be told it will be gone soon.  For my long time readers you know in past posts I have often talked of how Louisiana basically has one season……HOT!

We will have a few weeks of actual fall like weather, it will turn hot again, and then we will have a very brief winter before it is…….you guessed it – hot again!

This very bipolar weather doesn’t really give this girl much of an opportunity to have a fall or winter wardrobe.  I basically concentrate more on lighter-outer layers as opposed to sweaters or thick outer wear.  Chances are I will be shedding those sleeves by noon, but my love for fashion makes me drool over the winter options my fellow bloggers and out of state friends/family get to wear.

So in honor of our two weeks of a breeze fall season I wanted to share a few of the pieces I have purchased recently, as well as some that I would LOVE to have if only it was practical for me!

 

  

    

  

I hope you like some of the pieces I have recently incorporated into my wardrobe, and that they could be an option for you in your fall season.  You can find all of the pieces (and many that are similar) at NORDSTROM!

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Filed under FASHION, favorites, inspiration, Uncategorized

Grievance & Support

I would like to thank those of you that know me personally, and that have offered your support during such a difficult time.  For my readers that are not aware, my father lost his battle to cancer on October 2, 2017……just a short six months after he was diagnosed.  For this reason I have been absent from the blog world during the month of October.  It was more important for me to spend time with family, and to help support my mother during this difficult time.  I was not comfortable with writing a post about his passing at the time, which is why only those that know me personally are aware of what was going on.  It has taken several weeks for me to get to a point of being ready to share my loss.

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October has always been known as the breast cancer awareness month.  While I have personally known people who have fought (and some lost) battles with the horrible disease, it is also liver cancer awareness month.  This is the battle that my dad had to fight.  I wanted to take a moment to show my support for liver cancer before the month is over.  This is for you dad!

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Let’s talk skincare

If you are like me you have been using some type of skincare products for the past few 25 years.

I have to admit that my first introduction to skincare was not “love at first use”!  I loved my makeup from the time I was allowed to wear it, but having to wash my face at night with anything other than my bath soap was absurd!  Oh wait, then you also want me to wash it in the morning…..um, why?  Shouldn’t my face still be clean from the night before?

I have tried many – MANY – different products over the years.  Starting with basic face care products from trusty old Walmart, then on to direct sale companies like Aloette/Mary Kay, on to department store products, back to box store products, designer brand products, then dabbling into some DIY products, and back to my brand names because who has time to make stuff?…..and the cycle would just continue.  Never really truly finding anything that I absolutely loved and would stick with.  Trust me when I say this is probably one area that I have wasted the most money on!

As I am trying to really live my best life now, and I am doing my best to be more conscious of what I put on and in my body, I knew that skincare was my top priority.  I didn’t want to keep using the same old products that are filled with chemicals just because some magazine/celebrity swears by them.  Let’s be honest, the products made your skin feel great right after use……but they never really made it feel great all the time!  Oh and let’s not forget the endless amount of break outs or skin reactions from using them!

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I longed to find something effective, non-toxic, and that made my skin feel just as fabulous hours after using as it would as soon as it was rinsed off.  So I started my research, and that is when I came across the best skin care products I have used to date!

Tata Harper is a luxurious skin care line that uses non-toxic ingredients.  As a matter of fact, she owns the farm where most of their ingredients are grown, and all of her products are made in small batches at the farm in Vermont!  So not only natural and non-toxic, but they are also made in the USA!

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Guys……I am so in love with these products!  They feel wonderful when you use them, have very pleasant smells, and make your skin look fabulous!  Honestly, for the first time in years I am starting to love my skin again.  I will actually go out in public without a full face of make-up now!

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I am currently using the regenerating cleanser, concentrated brightening essence (I could bath in this stuff), rebuilding moisturizer, and the restorative eye cream.  These are the products that I use in my daily routine.  I have been using them for about 2.5 months now, and I still have half (or more) of the products left…..so they will last you for a while.  This is with twice daily use!

You can check them out at Amazon

You can also check the products out at Nordstrom

I really like to order from both of the above websites due to the additional perks and rewards program you get from the companies!

*p.s. It also helps that they are in such pretty bottles 😉

Disclosure:  This post contains affiliate links.  The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

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