Saturday, November 25, 2017

Gift Guide 2017 Comfy and Cozy Night In

Who doesn't love a cozy night in?  Here's a gift buying guide for all those movie watching, snuggling ladies in your life.  


Happy Shopping!!

Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Whole 30-Completed!!

I am going to start by saying SORRY FOR THIS WAY OVERDUE POST.  Now that I have that out of the way...Wham. Bam. Thank you Ma'am.  I rocked that Whole 30 with a few extra days under my belt.  We're talking Whole 34 to be exact.
Now, let me say something.  This was not a diet.  It drove me nuts during the experience when people said, "Are you still on your diet?" Or "How's your diet going?"  People, I wasn't dieting. I was eating so much FOOD.  Like good food. I was never starving.  I never felt like I was living without.  I was satisfied and actually looked forward to the foods I was putting into my body.  If I were to call it anything I would say it was a recharging of the body.  Whether it be by changing my mindset on food choices or ridding my body of the overly processed/hormone dense foods that have become our norm.
After my 30 days, I have continued to eat Whole30 on a 90/10 ratio, maybe 80/20 during a holiday weekend.  Meaning, 90% of the time I have kept with Whole30 eating.  When eating out or when social I am a bit more relaxed but when it comes to breakfast, lunch or dinner at home I am on point.  I continue to purchase organic/grass fed beef and organic free range chicken.  Spaghetti squash, eggs and sweet potatoes are still a norm in our house.  And yes, I am still drinking my coffee black.  Now, I have had maybe 2 nonfat vanilla lattes since, but I seriously don't even enjoy them much anymore.
Final weight stat: I lost 13 pounds in my 30 days.  But you know what's even better??  I HAVE KEPT IT OFF! And there are definitely some non scale victories too.  I didn't have a migraine at all during the 34 days.  I did end up with a migraine a couple days after I broke my strict Whole30 cycle, but haven't had one since.  My clothes fit better, I do not feel as bloated as I used to, I think my hair feels healthier, and so on...
But the one thing I love the most about it, it has changed my relationship with food.  Now, I mentioned earlier that I still indulge now and again.  But the indulgences are not often. Overall I just make better choices.  I turn down eating out more often than before.  I think I went from eating out at lunch with my coworkers once or twice a week last year to eating lunch out twice this school year so far.  And when I do eat out, I make sure to make wise food choices.  When I plan my meals I make a conscience effort to look for recipes that will benefit us rather than just fill our bellies.  Recipes that are packed with vegetables and nutrient dense ingredients.
I'll be sure to keep you in the loop with some different clean eating recipes I try.  My winter goal is one clean soup a week.  Seriously, you can't beat a hot bowl of soup during these cold winter months!


Thursday, July 27, 2017

Kitchen Remodel

 I just realized that I never shared our main floor remodel with you guys.
 I gave you a little teaser when we started the project with some demo pics, but I think it's about time I share the completed project.  Here are some before and after pics of the kitchen portion of the remodel.  
Whole Kitchen View BEFORE

Whole Kitchen View AFTER

Kitchen Entry 1 BEFORE

Kitchen Entry 1 AFTER

Desk Area BEFORE
Desk Area Turned Buffet AFTER
Refrigerator BEFORE

Refrigerator AFTER

Refrigerator/Pantry Slide Outs AFTER 

Kitchen Entry 2 BEFORE

Kitchen Entry 2 AFTER 

Stove- BEFORE 


Sink Area AFTER

Who doesn't love some before and after pics!?!  What a difference!

Monday, July 24, 2017

Whole 30- Week 2 Recap

14 days in the books and I'm feeling good!  My pants are fitting better and I have a "I feel very healthy" vibe going on.  There were a few times when my will power was tested during week 2.  Once when my son had to be taken to the ER with a broken arm.  We were there for 3+ hours and I hadn't had dinner yet.  So at 9:30 when we got home I was starving and didn't have anything prepared for dinner. Of course everyone else in my house wanted Subway.  I was able to overcome the urge for my 6in Italian BMT on white bread with cheese and extra mayo.  Yay for me!!  This week also marks my first time being away from home and having to eat out.  Brandon, the kids and I went to French Lick over the weekend to stay in the resort for our anniversary.  An ice cream parlor, Starbucks, a steakhouse and buffets were no match for my Whole 30 willpower!  

Things I learned during week 2:

1.  I really don't HAVE to have Taco Bell. Or any type of fast food.  
I was able to say no when others were having it.  (disclaimer: For some reason this week consisted of more fast food runs than we are used to.  It happens! We're human. ) 

2.  Coffee without all the flavored creamers, sugars and artificial ingredients is actually doable.  I have been adding Nutpods to my coffee.  
It is a Whole 30 approved, nature based creamer made up of half almond milk and half coconut milk.  It is non GMO verified, certified gluten free and vegan.  It is not sweet, so if you are used to tons of sweet creamers covering up your coffee it'll take awhile to get used to. 

3.  As stated in week 1, being prepared is a must, but so is staying on top of it.  Having Whole30 approved items on hand can be a lifesaver.  I found these seltzer waters at Trader Joe's. (way cheaper at Trader Joe's than on Amazon)
They come in handy for hanging out with friends when you want a little fizz.  Or on a hot day when you want a little something more than water.  Hint, is another good drink. (These can be purchased locally)  Neither do I drink daily.  Just occasionally.   

4.  Eggs and sweet potatoes are still my jam!
Breakfast, lunch or dinner!

5.  Organic coconut aminos is a great substitute for soy sauce.
Tastes just like it, minus the super saltiness.

**Number 6 consists of me be being totally honest and transparent. **
6.   Not sure how I feel about this dressing.
I'm not giving up on it yet and I'll try it again.  Those that truly know me, know that I love ranch.  Terrible for you, make a salad go from healthy to hazardous, ranch.  But I'm TRYING to be better. (Kim and BJoe-please let me know if you come up with a Whole30 approved ranch that matches the deliciousness that is Mill House ranch)    

Here's a few recipes that I'm looking forward to trying in the next few weeks:


Thursday, July 20, 2017

Whole 30- Week 1 Recap

I survived week 1 of the Whole 30.  7 days down...23 to go!  Actually, I started week 2 this past Monday, but I am just now getting to the blog to tell you about it.  So really, I'm about 1.5 weeks into it!

I have to say, I'm doing pretty well.  I am proud of myself. The hardest part for me in week 1 was not having an accidental slip with food.  Meaning, I never realized how many times I wiped a buttery spoon with my finger while cooking and then licked my finger.  Or how often I eat the last few bites off the kids plates when I'm clearing the table. Or that whenever I put the straw in my son's juice pouch, I take a small sip.  It happens.  Often.  So I had to be conscience of those choices.

All in all, I  have been eating really good food.  I am loving the taste of the food I am eating.  I am satisfied after my meals.  I am choosing vegetables or fruit when I need "a little something".

Things I learned during Week 1 of The Whole 30:
1.  I am a creature of habit...and my habit was carelessly putting nutritionally poor foods in my mouth. 

2.  I absolutely love the taste of sauteed beets.
3.  All natural, hormone free chicken and grass fed beef taste better.  They taste the way meat should taste. They even look better.  
Grain Fed vs. Grass Fed

4.  Eggs can be your best friend.  They are a cheap and easy form of protein.  Lucky for me, I love eggs.  Hard boiled, fried, poached...doesn't matter.  Over veggies, on their own...still doesn't matter.

5.  Whole Foods, Amazon and Trader Joe's have a great selection of Whole 30 compliant food.  I was able to get wild caught fish, grass fed beef and Whole 30 approved oils, dressings and mayo at reasonable prices.  

6.  Sweet potatoes are delicious grilled.  And can be a great base for a taco style dish.  

7.  Doing research and being prepared is the best way to begin this process.  I felt confident and had an idea of what foods to prepare based off of the Whole 30 approved ingredients I had already purchased. 

A few weeks before I started, I created a Whole 30 Pinterest Board. I pinned recipes, cheat sheets, and pointers from people that completed it.  Here's a few of my favorite recipes.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Lake Vibes

Who doesn't love some lake time?!?  Can't wait for summer to get in full swing!  Boating, tubing, fishing and just lounging sounds pretty fabulous right about now.  We're lucky to have friends with cabins on a lake.

I can remember going to the lake with a childhood friend of mine when we were younger.  I remember showering in the lake after a day of swimming.  (no joke we washed our hair in the lake)  I can remember catching a whopper of a fish in the lake too.  I love that our kids can also make memories like these...minus the showering in the lake.  


Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Derby 2017

A few weekends ago Brandon and I checked something off our bucket lists!  And boy, was it worth it!  If you're debating a day at the races for the Kentucky Derby I highly recommend you do it.  We opted for seats in the grandstand rather than tickets in the lawn because we figured it's a bucket list thing and we wanted to do it right!

We started our morning with breakfast, Mimosas and Bloody Marys with the crew at our friends Laura and Nate's lake house.


We then boarded our bus for the trip.  Renting a bus to take us there and back...Best. Idea. Ever.

The weather turned out better than expected and we had the best time.

Until next time....and there will be a next time!