Monthly Archives: November 2009

Lightload Towels

The Thanksgiving holiday is over and now it is time to get back to our routine of eating healthy and working out every day! I have found these great towels that are so handy to throw in your gym bag and are really good for wiping down either your machine or your face!
Lightload Towels are so convenient and they really do work! We put them to the test with our Insanity workouts. Brian, Jason, Kristi, Dawn, Chrissy and I gave them a trial run recently and we all were glad we had them. The sweat was pouring and the towels held up beautifully!
The towels come in a small, round package. You open them up and the towels unfold to a nice size (about the size of a paper towel) that is perfect for the workouts! We laid them out to dry and used them again the next day. Lightload Towels are super absorbent, quick drying and washable.

They can also be used for a fire starter, coffee filter, wind scarf, water filter or a first aid supplement.
Jake opened the beach towel right away and really put it through a test. He pulled on it and really tried to tear it. It took a lot of abuse from him before he was able to tear it up. They are resilient.

Head over to Lightload Towels today and check them out!
The wonderful people at Lightload Towels were kind enough to give me SEVERAL towels to offer to my wonderful readers. Instead of a drawing, we are going to switch things up this time around. THE FIRST TEN (10) COMMENTS WITH THE CORRECT ANSWER WILL GET A SET OF 2 TOWELS!!!
Here’s the instructions:

Head over to Lightload Towels and find out how long the towels last on average. Come back and leave me a comment with the correct answer. The first 10 people will get their own towels to try! You must become a follower of my blog to be eligible to win, so just click on the follow button and fill out the info (very easy) and you are all set. If you are already following, just say so!

back to life, back to reality

I enjoyed the holiday so much and now I HAVE to get back into my workout and healthy eating groove! I didn’t eat horrible, just ate way too much. I didn’t workout for the last 2 days and I am ready to get back at it this morning!

The first thing to do for me to get back on track with my healthy eating is to add in more salads and fruit and veggies! I will have a HUGE salad today for lunch. I found a great salad dressing to use that is sooo tasty! Briannas.

Briannas has many great flavors, but my favorite is the Champagne Caper Vinaigrette. It is sweet and tangy and oh so good! The Rich Poppy Seed is another great one! It is so fresh tasting. Really good on fruit too! Briannas salad dressings are natural with no artificial ingredients and you can use them for more than salads!

Here are a couple of recipes:

Briannas Holiday Slaw

1 lb pre-packaged Brocco slaw

2/3 cup craisins

3/4 cup broken walnuts or pecans

1 large red delicious apple (chopped)

1 cup Briannas Rich Poppy Seed Dressing

Combine all ingredients in a large bowl. Mix well. Best if prepared ahead of time and refrigerated until serving. Serves 8-10.

Briannas Strawberry Romaine Salad (recipe from Good Friends Great Tastes cookbook by Debbie Meyer)

1 head Romaine, Boston or other leaf lettuce

1/2 pint strawberries, sliced

1/2 cup Shredded Monterey Jack cheese ( I leave this out)

1/4 cup chopped walnuts or pecans

1 12- oz bottle Briannas Blush Wine Vinaigrette Dressing

Tear lettuce into bite size pieces.

Toast the chopped nuts 3-4 mins in a 300 degrees oven.

Combine the lettuce with cheese, nuts and strawberries.

Shake dressing well. Add 1/4 bottle of dressing and toss.

Taste to see if lettuce is coated enough for your taste.

Add more dressing if you prefer.

Briannas dressings come in many flavors:

All Natural:

Saucy Ginger Mandarin, The New American, Real French Vinaigrette, Rich Poppy Seed, Zesty French, Dijon Honey Mustard, Blush Win Vinaigrette, Lively Lemon Tarragon, and Rich Santa Fe Blend. I can’t wait to try them all! This gives me more reasons to eat more fresh fruit and veggies!

Happy Thanksgiving!

We have so many things to be thankful for in our family! First of all, we are all here. Jake had an accident in Jan, Brian had his accident in July and though it has been trying, we are all here and have our health. Brian will be able to walk again soon and Jake has fully recovered! We also welcomed a new member into our family! Madelyn has been such a joy in our lives for the 3 short months she has been around!

We have cooked, cleaned, eaten and then started over again!! The food is abundant and yummy! We had something for everyone!!

I am so thankful for my online blogging friends. It has been a joy to get to know so many new people and feel like you are part of my family as well. Thank you so much for letting me into your lives!

I hope that you have had an equally blessed day today with family, friends, good food and good health!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving Eve!

Is Thanksgiving Eve a holiday? Not sure, but I am so excited today! My parents are coming to town to visit. I haven’t seen them since late August and I miss them! I love it when they come to stay with us. The visits are usually fast and furious, they are as busy as we are. My dad is an auctioneer and mom is a realtor and they also own a meat fund-raising business. So, we don’t get to see each other as often as I would like. Mom was able to come and spend some time with me and Brian when he was in the hospital and I was so grateful to her. It was nice for me to have someone to lean on as well! Then after Madelyn was born, they came to love on their new great-granddaughter. They are going to be so surprised to see her. She has changed so much and has such a cute little personality!

My grandma, June is also coming today. I don’t see her much at all. She likes to stay home and we convinced her to come along. We really want to get some 5 generation pictures. It will be fun! I’ll post them after this weekend. I have a funny story about June. When I went to college in Ada, OK, June was the dean of nursing at the school. She told me that she was not old enough to have a granddaughter in college and therefore I was not allowed to call her grandma. Every since then I have called her June. She still dyes her hair and doesn’t act her age. No one is really sure exactly how old she is and she sure isn’t going to set the record straight!

So today I am thankful that my parents and June are coming to visit. They should be here today around lunch time and I really need to get off this computer and get stuff done!!! There are pies to bake people!!!!
Lightlife sent me coupons for some great free food items and I just got around to finding the products. I had asked our local health food store about them, they said they didn’t carry them, so I waited until I made a trip to Whole Foods. Come to find out, they do have some of the products. UGH!!!! I was able to get some yummy things and wanted to share them with you.

I made the Smart Tenders Savory Chicken into a pasta dish with peanut sauce. YUM! It got eaten before I could take a picture. But trust me, it was so tasty! Monday I made tempeh ruebens. I used to LOVE reubens. One of my favorite sandwiches. So, I was so excited when I found the tempeh and the recipe is from Isa Chandra Moskowitz’s Vegan with a Vengance! Talk about yummy! It’s not exactly corned beef, but the flavor is all there! I made my own french dressing and used a pumpernickel roll! Luckily, I snapped a photo for you to see the yummy goodness! The tempeh was very good and yesterday I ate the leftovers by themselves and enjoyed every last bite!

I plan to use the fakin’ bacon this weekend and if it passes the test with my family, then we know it will be good. The BBQ tempehtations are amazing!!! Even Brian liked them. He’s a die-hard BBQ fan.
Lightlife has some great recipes on their website. Be sure to check them out for a meatless option at your next meal! You won’t even miss the meat, but you’ll be doing your body a favor!

More Thankfulness and put your best nail forward

Continuing with my week of Thankfulness, today I am so thankful for my job. I have a wonderful, fulfilling job that allows me to work from home, spend more time with my family and that I love! I work as a fitness coach for Team Beachbody. I get to help other people find fun ways to get healthy and lose weight. In the process, I get to be in the best shape of my life! I feel better, look better and even sleep better all thanks to my job! Nothing better than that and I get paid to do it! If this is something that sounds good to you, please feel free to email me about it! I highly recommend it :) You can also check out my webpage for more info and to get a free membership to Team Beachbody and I will coach you to better health! http://www.missourifitclub.com/ These pictures are from when I got to meet the some of the trainers with Beachbody. I work out with these people daily. It was such a thrill to meet them in person! Shaun T, Chalene Johnson, Tony Horton and Debbie Seibers!

I love to give myself a mani/pedi and I know that I have told you all about my Spa Saturdays that I do once a month. Pampering is just so fun! Of course, it is more fun when you have someone to do it for you, but in these times, we are all looking for ways to cut back.

I recently got great girly goodies from Ms. Manicure. These are great tools for pampering your hands and feet. The Handy Dandy Mani, Rock N Sole and Call your Buff are all great items and would be wonderful stocking stuffers now that Christmas is just around the corner! You can pick these up at Kohls, Target, Wal-Mart or K-Mart.

The wonderful people at Paris Presents sent me this list of other things to use your kit for:

We’ve all been guilty of having a major beauty blunder at least once or twice in our lives. We leave the house with too much blush on, deodorant stains on our black t-shirts, fake eyelashes dangling from our perfectly made-up faces – the list goes on and on. Forgo common disasters and refine your inner recessionista by thinking outside the box with your beauty products. Let Ms. Manicure give you a lesson in how to fix fashion fiascos with these multi-functional nail products.

Knit-Pick Your Sweaters

Don’t worry about hand washing your favorite sweaters anymore. Solve your pilling problems with Ms. Pedicure’s Rock ‘n Sole ($1.99). By rubbing this dry pumice stone over sweaters, the little fuzzies that cause so much distress will be gone. Make sure to lay the clothing on a flat surface before gently stroking the fabric with the stone. Keep the stone clean and dry for future use!

Loose Lashes


Scared your eyelashes might fall off into your dinner plate a la the last date you went on? Give them extra security by applying them with the tweezers from Ms. Manicure‘s Handy Dandy Mani kit ($9.99). First, let lash glue sit for 30 to 60 seconds prior to using. Then, pick up individual lashes with tweezers, dip the ends in glue and securely apply them to the base of the eyelid. Make sure to coat them with mascara afterwards for extra protection!

Save Suede

Spill something on your new suede boots? You might not have to head for the shoe store for another pair just yet. Grab an emery board, like Ms. Manicure ‘s Call Your Buff ($2.99), and lightly rub the stain. Use the soft, buffer side of this four-sided board to ensure that your boots don’t get damaged in the process. Then, hold the shoe over steam from a boiling pot (or teakettle) on the stove to completely remove it. This works for suede clothing as well!

For a list of retailers and to check out other recession-friendly products, visit http://www.msmanicure.com/ and http://www.mspedicure.com/.

A Week of Thankfulness!

Since Thanksgiving is this week, I want to be thankful and post all the things I am so very blessed with. I will be posting what I am thankful for each day this week!

To start off with, I am so thankful for my family! I have an amazing, supportive family. We are all closer since Brian’s accident and so grateful that he is with us!! It could have easily gone the other way. Plus, we have a new addition to our family this year! Miss Madelyn is a great source of joy in our family! Everyone is in love with her!

My family consist of my hubby Brian, sons Chase, Nick and Jake, Chase’s wife Meredith and Madelyn (Chase and Meredith’s daughter). We also have Lauren and Morgan ( the girlfriends!!) and I certainly don’t want to forget them!

I am also thankful that I have found a great shampoo and conditioner. Now before you laugh at that, I have been looking for some time for a good, natural product that doesn’t leave my hair greasy. I think I’ve finally found it! Nature’s Gate sent me a good smelling shampoo and conditioner as well as a nice body wash. I work out every day and get really sweaty. I take a lot of showers and therefore have to wash my hair frequently. I don’t want to use anything that has chemicals and harsh ingredients, but I like to have clean hair. Some of the other products I have tried have left my hair dirty and limp. No one likes that! Nature’s Gate is organic and vegan certified. They are free of parabens, phtalates, sodium lauryl/laureth sulfates and animal derived ingredients. I am using the Asian Pear and Red Tea Color Protecting Shampoo and Conditioner and the Pomegranate Sunflower Velvet Moisture Body Wash! All of them smell so good!

Be sure to check out the great products from Nature’s Gate.

Spirit Sunday!

I like to take Sundays off. I don’t like to do much work and just spend the time with my family and giving thanks for a great week and looking toward the week ahead! Today will not be one of those days :(. I have so much to get done and get ready for Thanksgiving.

I’m still working on the bedroom remodel, I have to get it finished by Wed morning. This is what it looks like in my dreams.

I need to get my bills paid. I don’t hate that job, I’m so thankful that I have the money to pay the bills, but it just takes forever…

I need to get the last of the groceries purchased. I hate waiting until the last minute. That is when it is the most crowded.

And I need to finish cleaning the house, just ask Hermina and Jules about my great dusting abilities!!!!!

Monday I get to spend the day with my sweet baby Madelyn, so that day will be out, which means that I need to get a lot accomplished TODAY!

I really believe that you should keep a to-do list. I’ve shown you all my journal before, so you know that I like to keep a food journal, to-do list, Beachbody work list and my gratitude journal. Luckily, I can fit it all on one page in a cute notebook! In order to accomplish everything I want done, I must keep track of it all. I am known for shiny things catching my eye (facebook, blogging, books- the list goes on and on!!!) and I can be amazed how quickly time flies by without anything getting done. So, to stay focused this week I am going to get my to-do list done FIRST! Any bets on it happening that way??????

It’s Sheese!

When I decided to give up dairy in 2003, I was heartbroken over the fact that I couldn’t have cheese anymore. I loved cheese. In everything. But, I forged ahead knowing that I had to give up dairy products in order to be healthy. I lost 10 lbs just by giving up dairy products. I also quit having sinus infections. There are so many reasons why we shouldn’t be eating dairy, but that is for another post!

Since then I’ve tried a lot of the cheese alternatives. None of them have been a great replacement. Now, I have found Sheese! It is really good! That is saying a lot coming from me. It has good flavor, melts pretty good and comes in so many great flavors.

Sheese Smoked Cheddar is my absolute favorite! The taste is so good and I’ve used it in many recipes. I also liked the Gouda, Medium Cheddar and Blue Cheese and Cheddar with Chives. These are “hard” cheeses and are so easy to grate. I have used the Blue Cheese in a spinach salad that was amazing! The Medium Cheddar was good on taco night and also on nachos. The Cheddar with Chives is really good with crackers. The Smoked Cheddar was oh so good on veggie pizza and Gouda was great grated on top of a veggie stir-fry! Somehow, I have found a use for all of them!

The creamy Sheese are also really good! I loved using them as a dip for pretzels or veggies. The cheddar style had a good, tangy flavor and was one of my favorites. I really liked the Garlic and Herb Creamy Sheese. I’m going to make a hot dip for the family to try next week for Thanksgiving.

You can look for a store near you to purchase, if there isn’t one near you, please print out the flyer from Sheese and take it to your local health food store. We need to get the product in the stores so we can purchase it! I’ll be taking mine to both health food stores in my town next week! These products ARE that good!

There are some great sounding recipes on the website. Be sure to check those out and let me know if you give any a try that you love! I’ll be posting some of my recipes as well.

There is nothing better than soup on these cold days. One of my favorites is potato soup! So easy to make and so tasty!

Creamy Potato Soup

3 medium sized potatoes – diced ( I usually leave the skin on, but you can peel them if you like)

1 small onion – chopped and diced

1 clove garlic – minced

1/4 cup nutritional yeast

1 tbsp Earth Balance soy margarine

1 cup cashew or soy milk or mimic creme (YUM!)

Grated Sheese ( your choice of flavor) smoked cheddar is my fave!

Put potatoes, onions and garlic in saucepan and cover with water. Bring to a boil and cook until potatoes are done. Add in nutrtional yeast and milk of choice and earth balance. Let simmer for a few minutes and then add the grated Sheese on top and enjoy! You can use a potato smasher to mash the potatoes or eat it chunky! It’s good both ways!

I don’t usually follow a recipe when I make my soup, I “eyeball” it, so add or subtract the milk as needed.

Peeled Snacks and family fun

Last night was one of the best nights! All the kids came over for a pizza night. I love these nights. We all get to make our own pizzas and everyone pitches in to help! So, we were all in the kitchen working on the pizzas and I told the kids I had a new snack to try. Peeled Snacks. You should have seen their faces. The raced to the pantry to get them out. ( My kids are 18, 20 and 24!!) I loved it that they got so excited over dried fruit. They pulled them out of the pantry and started a taste test!

Peeled Snacks are a natural source of vitamins and fiber, completely dairy, wheat and gluten free. They are just dried fruit! They are also low in calories. The whole bag contains 110 – 150 calories! Just perfect for a quick snack!
They LOVED the apple, pineapple and mango. Cherry and apricot got a lot of votes and banana wasn’t the best according to them. I liked them all. They finished off just about all of them. I had to laugh, when they were smaller it was hard to get them to even try something new! Now, they can’t wait to see what I have hanging around!!
Peeled Snacks have no added sugar, oil, preservatives or other fillers, so it is real food! I love that!

I wanted to get a picture of the snacks, but they were gone before I could get the camera out. I was planning on taking a picture of the aftermath, but it was just a bit embarrassing :)
I did take a picture of the favorite pizza of the night – TACO PIZZA! I used morningstar farms crumbles seasoned with taco meat, a little tomato sauce and Sheese (whole post devoted to them soon!), piled on some lettuce, tomato and black olives. Some of us put salsa on the top, some didn’t! It was really tasty!

Be sure to pick up some Peeled Snacks to have on hand. The kids love them and so will you! After you have enjoyed your snack, you can send in your empty bags and Peeled Snacks will process them and recycle them. Because the bags are double layered to preserve the freshness of the fruit, the layers have to be seperated before recycling.

Become a fan of peeled snacks on facebook!