Friday, March 28, 2014

Five on Friday # 5

I'm linking up with Natasha over at Hello! Happiness for a Five on Friday post. Can't believe this will be my fifth FOF link-up! Seems like I JUST started doing these. Alright, let's get to it!

[one] Have you heard the remix of John Legend's, All of Me, featuring Tiesto? If not, I suggest you go download from iTunes right now! It's such a good jam and I am loving it right now. Here's another great song for all my country listeners - Thomas Rhett, Get Me Some of That! You better bet it's on my playlist already!!!!

[two] I made some clean banana pancakes TWICE this week. These are amazing. The only downside is they were a little hard to flip. Also, I tried my NutriBullet the second time to mix the bananas & eggs together and it worked really good.

To feed my two young [hungry] boys: 1 ripe banana, 2 eggs, cinnamon & vanilla to taste.

[three] Watch out everyone, Mason has officially begun his road to the Stanley Cup! At least that's what his dad thinks. ;) Andrew (hubby) tries to take Mason ice skating once a week and this past time was his first time with all his gear. He is still learning how to skate on his own but is loving it! Here are some pictures from this past week when he went. The free skate times are awful - during naps - so I usually stay home with Owen so he can take a nap. =( I get to pretend I'm there though because my family usually goes and they all send me pictures! GO KINGS GO!


As you can tell, Mason was DUNZO after his skating and took a nap on the couch with daddy (he NEVER sleeps on the couch).

[four] I tried a new clean recipe this week and I would say it was a success. Lol. My only hesitation with saying it was a success was the fact that it was way to spicy! I tried this buffalo chicken quinoa salad recipe. It was so yummy but we literally had to drink a glass of water after each bite (no joke)! After we finished, I even checked the recipe again to see if I put the wrong amount of hot sauce in the dressing, but nope, I got the right amount. I should probably email the chick who wrote this recipe and let her know she is a little insane with her hot sauce (or maybe she had a typo?)! When I told my husband that the dressing called for 1/2 cup of hot sauce, he told me I was an idiot and should have realized that was way too much hot sauce.... Whoops! All in all, try the recipe, but I would recommend cutting the hot sauce, at least in half (you can always add more if needed). Let me know how it turns out. For my 24 day challenger friends, make it without the blue cheese crumbles and you are good to go!!

[five] Fruit Punch Friday anyone? As all of you know, I am on the AdvoCare train and my favorite product is their SPARK. So I've decided that it's time I share my favorite spark flavor with some of my blog readers! I will send a sample of my favorite flavor to the first 14 people to leave their email address in the comments below!

Tired moms, get on this! It's nicknamed "mommy juice" for a reason and saves my sanity every morning (and then again at 3 pm if needed ;))!!! Ready...set...go!

Also - for anyone interested, we are having another group challenge that begins on April 7th. It's not too late to join in on the fun! Contact me for details!

Thanks for stopping by, Happy Friday Friends!!

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Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Treat Yourself Tuesday # 3

Hi Friends! Linking up with Becky at Olives 'n' Wine for a Treat Yourself Tuesday post. This past week was a treat in itself because my husband was between jobs so we got to have him home!!!! Of course, he had plenty of tax returns that he had to get out the door so he was stuck on his laptop most of the time, but it was still nice to have lunch with him and just see him, lol! On Thursday of last week, we got to go to lunch with some of his colleagues to one of my favorite places, Agora!!!!! It is a Brazilian Steakhouse.... Have you ever been to one?? This place is so good and soo nice. I got to eat everything from sausage to bacon wrapped filet, to chicken hearts (except I didn't eat these!). And did I mention they have the BEST cheese filled rolls? Oh man, I'm drooling just thinking about it. We had the buffet which includes all the side dishes/salads/extras that you want, and then men dressed as gauchos come around to your table with skewers of meat for you to try! It is quite the experience. I HIGHLY recommend this place to anyone who enjoys eating meat (or anyone who has a husband that enjoys meat). Go try it and thank me later. =)

The hubby and I got to go shopping together WITHOUT the kids on Sunday.... this was a treat in itself! Since my hubby started a new job yesterday, he wanted to buy a new wardrobe, literally! So I helped him buy new dress shirts & new work shoes. Can I just say that I thought I had expensive taste until he tried on two different styled Hugo Boss shirts and told me one of them was "cheap feeling"!!!! We both laughed at how ridiculous of a statement that was. When we were at the mall, I made a lot of returns (one of my new hobbies, sorry Nordstrom & Macy's) & treated myself to a new shirt! Here is a picture of what the back look likes and here is a picture of the front on me. Love this shirt!

Lastly, I treated myself to another 24-Day Challenge!!! I am going to be starting on April 7th with a bunch of mommy friends (and tons of others) in a group challenge. I'm so excited!! I did my first challenge back in January and had some great results that I wanted to do another one to get back in the swing of things 100%. Currently, I try and eat clean about 80% of my time, but I can't wait to be back on a challenge. It is so much fun for some reason.... sticking to a plan and CHALLENGING MYSELF to prove I do have will-power and I can eat healthy (and see results!). If you are interested in learning about the challenge, send me an email or you can click here to purchase your 24 day challenge bundle! I will be notified of your purchase and send you an invite to join our Facebook group which is the only way I'm able to stay on track! We all share clean recipes, meal plans, workouts and just a whole bunch of support and encouragement! Here is a picture of my AdvoCare products.

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Saturday, March 22, 2014

What's in my Grocery Cart?

I thought I would let you all know what I like to purchase when I go to the grocery store - Trader Joe's specifically. I always love reading what other people buy at the store to get some new ideas so hopefully you find this helpful and enjoyable! Here are the healthy must haves on my list.

Bananas - we go through bananas like crazy! I buy a ton and end up freezing some for smoothies
Gala apples
Bartlett pears
Blueberries, strawberries (for smoothies I prefer frozen berries, for snacks - fresh)
Green seedless grapes - when I get home, I freeze half of them for a refreshing snack option
Pre-washed bag of kale (I use this in my smoothies in the am)
Pre-washed bags of lettuce
Spaghetti squash
Mediterranean hummus (It's the best! From Trader Joe's)
Trader Joe's just chicken strips - great for salads or making kid's chicken quesadillas
Quick cook steel cut oats
Organic quinoa (I prefer buying the huge bag at Costco)
Sprouted multi-grain bread (I like the Trader Joe's one best)
Organic unsalted creamy peanut butter (buy at TJ's for a better deal and better selection of nut butters)
Chia seeds
Whole ground flaxseed meal - I use this in my smoothies
Larabars - apple pie (great on the go snack item)
Raw unsalted almonds - great healthy snack option
Almond meal -great for baking (I use it to make healthy banana muffins)
Organic brown rice cakes -great for snacks with PB & banana slices on it
Eggs, eggs, and more eggs - we love eggs at our house: scrambled (breakfast) and hard boiled (snacks)
Ground turkey - buy this at Costco for the best pricing
Chicken breasts - also buy this at Costco for the best pricing

Spices & other items on hand: 
 - pure vanilla flavor
 - ground cinnamon
 - ground cumin
 - red pepper (cayenne)
 - 21 seasoning salute (from Trader Joe's... it's a great all around no salt seasoning mix)
 - coconut oil spray, extra virgin olive oil spray
 - extra virgin olive oil
 - reduced sodium soy sauce
 - organic low sodium chicken broth

For the kids (all from Trader Joe's):
 - Joe's O's
 - white cheddar corn puffs
 - veggie sticks potato snacks
 - oven roasted turkey

These little cuties managed to find some room in my cart too! =)

Hope you found this list helpful!

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Friday, March 21, 2014

Five on Friday # 4

Happy Friday! I'm linking up with April over at A. Liz Adventures for a Five on Friday post. This past week was alot of fun. We had my in-laws come visit, Mason had a HUGE accomplishment (see # 3 below), and my hubby has been home this week because he is in between jobs (he took a job with a new public accounting firm AND got a promotion with the switch =))!!

[one] O.P.I. Nailpolish - Samoan Sand. I really like this color for spring/summer. It's a light tanish/pink color. The only downside to the color is you will need at least 3 coats. Other than that, it's an all around great color!!!

[two] This is how I have felt the past two months or so, ever since I have started on Spark! 

[three] This week, Mason went poo poo on the potty for the first time ever. This was a huge accomplishment because every time that I have tried to potty train him before, he would hold it and only go pee on the potty. He really wasn't ready before now. After he went for the first time this week, he now has the confidence to use the potty all the time. Yesterday he wore his big boy underwear the ENTIRE DAY with NO ACCIDENTS!! Here is a picture of him after he went poo poo for the first time, haha!!! Sorry, maybe this was TMI but this is one proud mother over here. 

[four] This is my new jam. If you like country (at all), you need to get this song on your play list stat!

[five] We love to play with friends outside. Here is a picture of my boys with their neighborhood friends, Ellie & Abby. I think they were all hungry which is why they have there hands in their mouths.

There you have it, my five on friday!!!

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Tuesday, March 18, 2014

Treat Yourself Tuesday # 2

Linking up with Becky over at Olives 'n' Wine for a Treat Yourself Tuesday post! I am going to keep it short and simple, with photos of course! =)


On Saturday night, the hubby and I went to Surf & Sand Resort down in Laguna Beach and enjoyed some drinks and a beautiful sunset with friends! It was such a fun night out, great atmosphere, good company, and yummy food & drinks!!

I got to experience a really good sushi place this week with some of my neighbor friends! For those of you that are local, it's called Yama Sushi and sits right on the Mission Viejo Lake. It was gorgeous, however, we didn't get there until after sunset, so I'm sure it would be even more gorgeous during the day! I will have to go again and take the hubby!

Fresh hand-picked roses!!! I snagged these last week and they bloomed recently and this is what they look like. Instant beautifulness added to my bathroom - I love it!

Happy Tuesday friends!

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Friday, March 14, 2014

Are you a runner? Help!

I just bought two new pairs of running shoes and need your help in deciding which pair to keep. I'm not the type of person to wear a pair once and fall in love with the way they fit right away so it's hard for me to try something different. I just bought two different brands and would love some input.

[one] Brooks Adrenaline GTS 14

[two] Asics Gel Nimbus 15

I should probably mention that my biggest set-back as a runner is my ankles and shins. I over-pronate and get shin splints occasionally if I run a lot more than normal. My current pair of running shoes is the Asics Gel Nimbus (10 or 11) WITH super feet inserts.

Have you tried either of these shoes? Which do you prefer?

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Five on Friday # 3

Happy Friday!! I am linking up with April over at A. Liz Adventures today for a Five on Friday post! This is going to be totally random but here we go!!

Earlier this week I took my kiddos to the park and had so much fun. Sometimes I forget how lucky I am to get to stay home with my boys and just enjoy them. We had so much fun - Mason and Owen loved running in circles up and down the gazebo ramp & chasing each other. It was also the first time I successfully got Owen to keep his hat on!!! I give kudos to Mason for this because he sets such a good example for his little brother and always wears his. =)

It was my birthday on Wednesday and of course, I over-indulged. Here is a picture of the most amazing cake ever!!! Have any of you tried Nothing Bundt Cakes? They are AMAZING! The one I got was red velvet .... yummm! They are also decorated so cute. A must try if you have one located near you.

I was in search of an easy crockpot chicken recipe that was Advocare friendly so I threw something together and it turned out good! I was so proud of myself. I butterflied my chicken breasts (they cook better this way, in my opinion), cut up some garlic cloves, and threw both in the crockpot. Then I top them with a clean marinara sauce & some fresh mushrooms, and cooked them on low. After they were done, I piled the chicken ontop of some mung bean noodles. It was super easy & healthy. I will be posting the recipe once I get it down on paper so stay tuned. Here is a picture of the final product! (BTW - if you like to eat clean and haven't tried these yet, I suggest you go buy them now!!!)

This week was the first week I successfully got cute shoes on Owen. I was so happy! That kid has such chunky ankles and feet that, up until this point, has been so difficult to find shoes that fit him right. I thought this was worthy enough to celebrate, haha!

I found out that my parents' fruit trees have filled with tons and tons of fruit so I snagged some lemons, grapefruits, tangelos, oh, and some roses, from their house. =)

Well, there you have it. My Five on Friday. Thanks for the link up ladies. Have a great weekend everyone!!

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Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Stitch Fix

Hi Friends!

Have you guys heard of Stitch Fix? I was referred by a friend and just signed up for my first fix today!
Here is how it works:

You sign up and then get to answer a series of questions about your body type, sizes, and style preferences. There are different types of clothing pictures that you rate depending on if it's something you "don't like much at all" or "love it!". You can also link your twitter account, a pinterest board, or linkedin account (strange, not sure why?) to your profile so the stylist can get a better idea of your likes. Once you set up your free style profile, you can schedule your first fix! It's $20 to schedule a fix. My fix won't arrive until April 19th, which is a bummer, but I think they are getting very busy and popular at the moment so fulfillment takes a little bit longer than normal. Stitch fix pays for your shipping and will send you 5 items - anything ranging from pants, top, skirt, dress, scarf, earrings, etc. You can specify if you don't want a specific type of item. Once they send you the 5 items, you have a few days to try them on and decide if you want to keep them. If you decide to keep any of them, your $20 fee is applied to your purchase!!! That's one of the highlights of this concept (in my opinion). No money wasted on a fee! And then if you decide to keep all 5 items you receive 25% off your entire purchase. Anything you don't want, you can send back to them with the pre-paid envelope and then request your next fix! You can request a fix monthly, yearly, or whatever you want. No pressure to even request a second if you are dissatisfied with your first fix. I think this concept is genius, especially for those of us who don't have time to get to the mall as often as we'd like.

Has anyone tried this before? Thoughts? I would love to hear your feedback!

Anyone else want to try it with me?

Stay tuned for my stitch fix post with pictures of the items I receive =)

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Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Treat Yourself Tuesday # 1

Hi friends!! This is my first time linking up with Becky, over at Olives ‘n’ Wine, for a Treat Yourself Tuesday post. Now being a stay at home mommy on a budget, I wouldn't normally have several options of ideas for a TYT, however, it is my birthday on Wednesday so I have done a little extra ‘treating’ than normal. =)

First off, what is with this ridiculous 85 degree weather in March?! I mean, seriously?? It’s insane and I’m not sure if I like it. So on Saturday, my sister and I decided to go outside and get some sun and walk around Fashion Island with the kids. While we were there, I snagged a bargain on these sunglasses (yes that is me being a dork and posing INSIDE for you all to see my new shades) and I LOVE them. I love the round shape, the black tinted shades, and the delicate silver-lined arm (is that even the right word to use?). Can I admit I bought them from a cart, for $15!!!?

Here is a picture of me and my littlest one on the trolley at Fashion Island. Notice something different about me? How about the fact that my hair is ACTUALLY down because I was able to style it since I GOT A HAIRCUT. That was a huge treat for myself…. I needed one really bad!

On Sunday, I went to a friend’s Stella & Dot jewelry party. It was so much fun and great to get away from my kids for a couple hours – don’t take that the wrong way, but I am always with my kids & totally deserved a break. =) Here are a couple pictures of my jewels I fell in love with. I think the necklaces are going to have to wait a bit to be purchased, but which of the bracelet(s) are your favorite? I need your help to decide which ones I should get myself for my birthday! Hehe


Lastly, how do you like my new page?!?! My blog also got a little TYT action. ;) I am just a tad obsessed with it.

There you have it; I definitely went above and beyond to treat myself this week. Please don’t think this is a normal week for me – because it’s not. =)

Happy Tuesday everybody & thanks Becky for the link-up!!

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Friday, March 7, 2014

Five on Friday # 2 - Fashion Finds

Happy Friday Friends! I'm linking up with April, over at A. Liz Adventures, for this week’s Five on Friday. I am going to show you some of my fashion finds when I went shopping yesterday! My mom watched the kids and gave me some money to shop for myself for my birthday…. Thanks mom!!!

1. ASTR – Back Button Stripe Tank. This is one of my favorite trendy shirt brands. I love the stripes in this shirt and if you click on the link, check out the fabulous back of the shirt!!! LOVE. LOVE. LOVE THIS. 

2. ASTR – Notched V-Neck Woven Blouse. So here is my fav brand again, and this shirt was a STEAL!! I always love a bargain!! BTW – please ignore the hideous photo of the shirt, it doesn't do the shirt justice (maybe that’s why it’s on sale?)!

3. ASTR – Embroidered Mesh Inset Tank. There is definitely a common theme with my purchases…. Hmmmmm…. Here is another cute one!

4. Lush – ‘Lily’ Side Slit Woven Tee. The picture doesn’t do the shirt justice. It’s a silky fabric that you can totally dress up for a cute going out top. I tried it on with some cute black skinny’s (#5 below) and a necklace and it was to die for cute!

5. Jolt – Ponte Skinny Pants. These are surprisingly a really good fit for ultra skinny pants.

Which of the above is your favorite fashion find?  1, 2, 3, 4 or 5

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