5 Kitchen Tools Under $10 You Need in Your Life

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5 KITCHEN TOOLS UNDER $10

5 Kitchen Tools Under 10 Dollars You Need In Your Life

Once you give these 5 Kitchen Tools a try, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without them. PLUS, they are all under $10!  Can I get an AMEN?

Toaster Tongs ($2.50)

Maybe you love playing catch the toast in the morning, but in case you don’t, these Pampered Chef Bamboo Toaster Tongs will be the best $2.50 investment you will ever make (a Roth IRA might not hurt either, though).

Slow Cooker Liners ($5.99)

So you probably already have a Crock Pot, but have you used these liners yet?  Not only do you not have to worry about making dinner, use these liner so you don’t have to worry about cleaning after either!

All Purpose Spreader ($6.25)

A butter knife just will not do.  Whether you’re spreading Peanut Butter, Cream Cheese, or plain butter, your life just became ridiculously easy.

Veggetti – Vegetable Spiralizer ($9.99)

My girls are pretty good about eating veggies, but I like to sneak some spiralized zucchini into their spaghetti every now and then.  I also don’t like pasta (don’t hate), so the veggetti allows me to eat “spaghetti” with the fam.

Adult Lunchable Containers ($9.99)

So maybe that isn’t the “technical” name, but you get the idea.  Prepping lunches for the week is a breeze with these bad boys!


There you have it!  My life has been forever changed since incorporating these gadgets into my kitchen.  It certainly doesn’t hurt that all 5 kitchen tools are under $10!  Change my life for under $50?  Yes please!

What are your favorite kitchen gadgets?  I’d love to hear what you can’t  live without.

 

5 Kitchen Tools Under $10 You Need In Your Life


If you’re interested in other ways I sneak veggies into family dinner, check out Veggie Hide And Seek.

 


 

Love Pampered Chef AND a great deal? {CLICK HERE} to see what’s $10 & Under right now.

 


 

Thank you for stopping by!

All Diets Work . . . But Not Always (Just Hear Me Out)

Finding the perfect fitness program isn't easy, but it's possible. Find out how to pick the perfect nutrition and exercise plan to meet your specific needs.

I know what you’re thinking, all diets work?  What magic potion are you drinking?  Here me out on this!

I think I was about twelve years old when I went on my first diet.  I’d like to say that it worked forever and I adopted a new healthy lifestyle during my raging hormonal tween years, but lets be real, did anyone?  The reality is I’ve had an on-again off-again relationship with dieting and fitness for the vast majority of my life, and I loved that every program I signed up for.  Literally, every time I cut carbs or counted calories I lost weight and felt a renewed sense of life and purpose.  The problem was this: every time I cut out carbs or counted calories I eventually uncut carbs or became too busy to track calories.  Inevitably, I would begin to gain weight and thereby lose my newfound confidence.

Finding the perfect fitness program isn't easy, but it's possible. Find out how to pick the perfect nutrition and exercise plan to meet your specific needs. All diets work, but not always.

My theory is this: any time you begin a new health program or fitness routine, you begin paying attention to what you eat and how much you move.  You no longer mindlessly eat whatever comes your way or whatever you have time to grab between appointments.  You plan, you prep, you pave the way towards your own success.  Finally, you take the time to create a meal plan, grocery shop, avoid the chip and cookie aisles, and you are diligent in your plans.

You have become intentional.

There it is!  You are intentional; with your nutrition, with your physicality, and therefore with your life.  The hiccup with most people {myself included} is we gradually become less intentional as time wears on.  Eventually, we lose focus, and we give ourselves allowances.  We run out of time to meal prep, and we convince ourselves that “just this week” we’ll figure out how to grab-and-go in a healthy way.

So, we grab an apple on our way to work, but when lunch rolls around we hear our coworkers are going out to eat.  So maybe “just this once” we’ll join them.  Perusing through the “light” menu, we order a salad or fish {so proud} until we realize someone is celebrating a birthday or a promotion.  We  can’t not order appetizers or desserts (or both!) for the table. We’ll indulge in “just” a few bites . . . then “just” a few more.  After work, we’ll run through the drive-thru “just this once” for a chicken wrap {hey, it’s small!}.  I could go on, but I think I’ve made my point.  We play the “just” game until we’ve gained back every pound we lost plus a couple more.  How do we possibly break this cycle?

Finding the perfect fitness program isn't easy, but it's possible. Find out how to pick the perfect nutrition and exercise plan to meet your specific needs. All diets work, but not always.
Photo credit: Gretchen Rubin “Better than Before”

Break the Cycle

If you know me, then you know I am a HUGE Gretchen Rubin fan.  I love how her books and podcasts emphasize the importance of knowing ourselves in order to find true happiness and contentment with our lives.  Through learning more about myself, I discovered that I’m an obliger, a person who responds best with outside accountability.  I’m an abstainer, I can’t just have one potato chip without it leading to an empty bag thirty minutes later.  I’m a lark, I perform best when I’m well rested and wake up early.

Upon learning these things, I discovered that I needed to find a program that gave the obliger in me some outside accountability and allowed me to be strict with my goals without being pressured by the 80-20 rule.  In the very least, I needed a program that offered these options.  And I found it.  I found the solution for me in a bag of nutrient dense powder and six little color-coded containers that come with an incredible support system of like minded friends willing to hold me accountable to the goals I’ve set for myself.

Finding the perfect fitness program isn't easy, but it's possible. Find out how to pick the perfect nutrition and exercise plan to meet your specific needs. All diets work, but not always.

It might not be the program for you (sacrilege, I know!)

I can guarantee you this: there is something that works for you!  I’m confident in this.  I wouldn’t lie to you.  ALL DIETS WORK!  I wasn’t kidding about that.  The first step you need to take (and I’m serious about this) is to learn more about yourself.  What makes you tick?  What triggers your emotional eating?  How are you best held accountable?  What are your favorite types of fitness programs?  How can you create a system to eat more healthfully?

Please take a few minutes and follow the links to Gretchen Rubin’s quizzes and articles above in order to help you get to know yourself better, and comment below with your tendency and how it helps you create a system of success for yourself!  I absolutely LOVE hearing how others are finding ways to implement these systems in their daily lives. I can’t wait to see yours!

Fuel your body. Feed your mind.  Free your soul.

Vegan Cashew “Cheese” Spread

Looking for a vegan or vegetarian cheese option? Check out this great recipe for Cashew Cheese.

As a way to ring in 2016, I asked my followers on Social Media to pick one food item for me to take out of my diet for the month of January.  I received so many great options like cheese, sugar, meat, and Richard (literally, two different people wrote Richard . . . not really sure what to do with that information, but I’ll roll with it).  I put all of their suggestions into a drawing for one lucky winner (or loser, depending how you look at it): DAIRY!

Looking for a vegan or vegetarian cheese option? Check out this great recipe for Cashew Cheese.

 

I knew this was going to be a tough cookie, because, well, dairy encapsulates so many of my favorites: cheese, chocolate, cheese, ice cream, cheese, and did I mention cheese?  This may come as a surprise to some of you, but I really like cheese.  Nay, I really love cheese.  There was a moment in my life when I had to be physically removed from my station on a sandwich making team, because being in charge of the cheese meant that I ate every other piece that slice that came my way.  Here you go sandwich, one for you, one for me, one for you, one for me . . .  I’m not even exaggerating, I have witnesses.  All of that to say, I was a little bit nervy about giving up dairy (aka cheese) for an entire month.  I said I was going to do it, though, so by golly I’m going to do it!

I’ve heard about this alleged “Cashew Cheese” from some of my vegan friends, and I’ve seen it listed as ingredients at some of my favorite restaurants, so I figured I’d try to look through a few recipes to see if I could come up with my own version of this Cheese-postor (that’s cheese-impostor, in case it doesn’t come across so soundly in written form).  So, here’s what I did, and you can too!

Looking for a vegan or vegetarian cheese option? Check out this great recipe for Cashew Cheese.

Here’s what you’ll need:

  • 1 cup cashews (soaked for at least one hour & drained)
  • 1/4 cup filtered water
  • 1/2 cup nutritional yeast
  • 1/4 cup lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon Apple Cider Vinegar
  • 1 Tablespoon Dijon Mustard
  • 3 Garlic Cloves
  • Himalayan Sea Salt
  • Cracked Pepper

Here’s what you do:

  • Throw everything in a blender
  • Blend (supes complicated, right?)

Looking for a vegan or vegetarian cheese option? Check out this great recipe for Cashew Cheese.

 

Just in case you want my two cents, here you go:  it.is.exquisite! Seriously, I loved every single tasty bite I got, and the family and friends who got to it before I licked the bowl also report thoroughly enjoying this scrumptious treat.  However, and this is a big however, I’m not sure why someone would call this “cheese” exactly.  Please don’t misunderstand, it is SUPER DELICIOUS, just not in a cheesy kinda way.  I can see how it might be used in lieu of a cheese spread or dip, but my feta favoring palette can’t seem to get on board with calling this cheese just yet.

Am I being too harsh?  Are my cheese standards just a little too high?  You tell me!  Comment below with your thoughts on this Vegan “Cheese” Spread.  Are there other recipes or variations I should try?

Reaching Goals & Gaining Self Control

Setting and achieving goals can be a tough nut to crack, but here is a new concept to help you gain some self control and reach your goals.

Setting and achieving goals can be a tough nut to crack, but here is a new concept to help you gain self control and reach your goals.

I was experiencing a pretty frustrating morning when I decided it was time to get out of the house, slap on my headphones, and go for a hike.  Gaining self control is a constant issue in my world, so I checked in on my podcast library to see what I could find to pull me out of my miry mood.  If podcasts could be spirit animals, I found mine in this episode of Freakonomics Radio where Katherine Milkman shared her findings on a concept she has coined “Temptation Bundling.”  (NOTE: she also discusses the “Fresh Start Effect” in this episode, but for the purpose of focus, I’m saving that one for a future post).

Setting and achieving goals can be a tough nut to crack, but here is a new concept to help you gain self control and reach your goals.

Milkman’s idea of “Temptation Bundling” has you pair something that you like to do with something that you should do.  Generally speaking, as humans, we are naturally inclined to create time for what we enjoy and avoid that which we do not, which is why so many people have a tough time setting and achieving goals.  So, the light bulb went off, and her research followed.   Admittedly, this theory stemmed from her own personal challenges sticking to diets and her struggles with self control at the end of long work days.  Her motivation was to research possible solutions for herself as well as to help others reach their goals.

While listening, I realized that I had unknowingly implemented her notion of “Temptation Bundling” several years ago.  At the time, I was unhappy with my health, and couldn’t figure out how to motivate myself to hop on the treadmill that was collecting dust in my bedroom.  I made excuse after excuse: I’m too busy, I’m too tired, I’m too lazy (ok, so that one was probably true, but not a decent reason).  It occurred to me one day that I was clearly not “too busy” to workout if I had enough time to binge on Netflix every night and most weekends.  So, I made a decision that I was “not allowed” to watch any television unless I was on my treadmill.  I didn’t have to run or get too crazy, but I had to be moving.  Guess what?  IT WORKED!  I was on that treadmill every.single.day. which might say more about my addiction to Netflix than it does about my commitment to getting healthy, but it doesn’t matter!  I was on the right road to a healthier and happier me.  Turns out, I also had this trick in my back pocket to get my laundry done.  I made a rule that I was only allowed to watch Jeopardy (yes, I’m a nerd and I love Alex Trebek’s quippy ways) while folding clothes.  SPOILER ALERT: IT WORKED AGAIN!   Ultimately, I had paired something I liked to do: watch television, with something I should do: workout & fold clothes.  

Setting and achieving goals can be a tough nut to crack, but here is a new concept to help you gain self control and reach your goals.

Here are a few more examples of “Temptation Bundling” that might be up your alley:

  • Indulge in a cheat meal & do 50 sit-ups
  • Only listen to your favorite album & balance your checkbook
  • Skip your workout?  Skip the brewsky!
  • Avoiding someone you should spend time with?  Take them to your favorite restaurant (reserve this restaurant solely & completely for difficult people)
  • Clean out your inbox while watching your favorite movie
  • Declutter while listening to your favorite podcast
  • Only play Candy Crush when you’re on the stationary bike (please only on a stationary one . . . yikes!)

 

If you need help getting your “Temptation Bundle” together, don’t sweat it!  

I’ve got a worksheet to help you figure it out:

Setting and achieving goals can be a tough nut to crack, but here is a new concept to help you gain some self control and reach your goals.

What did you come up with?  I’d LOVE to see all of your bundles in the comments below!

If you want to read some other great posts from some of my bloggy friends, we’ve got a Bloggy Brunch goin’ on!

How to Walk 10,000 Steps Everyday!

Trying to figure out how to stay more active during the day? Here are a few tips to get you up and moving!

AFFILIATE LINK DISCLAIMERHow to get more steps in your day.

So you’re wondering how to get more steps in.  Whether you have jumped on the Fitbitting Bandwagon, or you are simply trying to move more throughout the day, here are a few tricks I’ve discovered to get at least 10,000 steps every single day.


 

Take a Break

How to get more steps in your day.

If you’re anything like me, you start working and get sucked into your computer for hours.  Whether you’re responding to the Never Ending Story of your inbox, or you’re locked into your calendar, there are days when you start work, and next thing you know the sun set without you even noticing.  On these kinds of days, you have to be intentional about getting more movement than the sporadic trip to the restroom.

The easiest way I have discovered to get myself out of desktop gridlock is to set an alarm.  Every couple of hours the alarm on my phone goes off with a reminder to stand up and get moving.  When I hear the alarm, I immediately stop what I’m doing; I have to.  I know that if allow myself to finish up one last sentence, that one sentence turns into two, which turns into three, which eventually turns into several hours and my alarm goes off again.

So, when the alarm goes off, get up, stretch your legs, take a lap around your office, your house, the library, where ever you might be, and keep moving for five minutes.  You’re getting those steps in, PLUS the mental break is great for your productivity and mental acuity (another topic for another day).


 

Park Inconveniently

How to get more steps in your day.

Whether you are just getting to the office, pulling into the grocery store parking lot, or taking a trip to the mall, make it a point to park farther away than you normally would.  I don’t mean snagging the spot one lane over.  Go big or go home on this one!  Take the absolute farthest spot from your office entrance, or find a spot far from the cart return (and by all means take the extra steps to return your cart), or if you’re really inspired before your shopping excursion, choose the parking lot on the opposite end of the mall.  Just imagine all those steps you’re tracking as you traverse through the crowds of shoppers.  The bottom line is this, if your typical course of action is to get the quickest, closest, and most efficient parking spot, just do the opposite.


 

Take the Stairs

How to get more steps in your day.

You’re probably rolling your eyes in a duh-like fashion, so I won’t tell you what you already know.  Just like picking a decently far parking spot, take the stairs over the elevator at every opportunity.

You’ve heard all of that before, but what about taking the stairs at home (or if you live in a one-story, taking some extra steps).  How many times have you been sitting on the couch, or lying in bed, or finishing up dinner, and you either need or want something, but you decide it’s too far away?  Don’t tell me I’m the only one here guys!  Lying all snuggly in bed when you realize you are desperately thirsty, but getting out into the cold and walking to the kitchen is THE LAST thing you want to do, am I right?

Well, now you have some extra motivation to take the trek downstairs (and presumably back UP).  Getting extra steps is now on the forefront of your mind, so do it. Just do it.  Get up out of that fluffy goodness of pillows and down comforters, and get that glass of water.


 

Get Outside

How to get more steps in your day.

Now, I understand that some people do not live in the temperate climate of Southern California, so I’ll concede that this might not be possible for some of you year round.  Don’t worry, I’ve got some tips for you too!  For now, though, let’s assume it is a beautiful day . . .

Slap on some sunscreen, and hit the road Jack!  Seriously, what are you doing inside on a day like this?  Go for a walk around your neighborhood, take a hike (literally, not metaphorically), try something you’ve never done before.  Scroll through Groupon to find a new adventure.  Call up a friend you’ve been meaning to reconnect with, and invite them to join you.  With a little bit of creative intention, the possibilities are seriously endless.


 

Discover Moments

How to get more steps in your day.

You have a thirty minute lunch break; you’ve finished your sandwich, and you still have 10 minutes before you have to report in.  Ordinarily you might lounge around the break room, or crush through the most recent licorice forest.  Instead, why not take advantage of those few, precious moments to enjoy some fresh air?

If weather or time do not permit a jaunt outside, take the stairs down to the lobby and do a couple of laps.  Take the stairs back up to your desk before your boss clocks in.  Who knows, maybe you’ll lose track of time and the leisurely stroll turns into a mad dash.  The point is, if you have time to watch a show, play a game, or troll your newsfeed, you have plenty of time to get in a few extra steps.


 

Join or Start a Challenge

How to get more steps in your day.

If you have a fitbit, you may have noticed that there is a tab for challenges in the app.  This has proven to be an excellent way to find motivation to get your buns off the couch.  You can easily find friends to challenge through Facebook, your contacts, or by inviting them with an e-mail.

Fitbit has also designed different types of challenges.  Depending on your competitive nature, you can walk to annihilate the competition, or you can collect challengers simply to cheer each other on.

I thought that I was doing pretty great hitting my 10,000 daily step goal. Then I started joining challenges. This is when I realized some of my friends were more than doubling my steps on a daily basis.  I found this to be incredibly motivating to get moving even more, and I did!  I have yet to catch up to these high stepping maniacs, but my new daily average is closer to 15,000 (and I feel GREAT!).


 

Don’t have a Fitbit and starting to feel left out?

{CLICK HERE} to peruse some popular fitness trackers!

 


 

If you’re interested in finding ways to sneak veggies into family dinner, check out Veggie Hide And Seek.

 


 

What do you think?  Do you have any tips or tricks that you use to reach your 10,000 steps every day?  Please share them in the comments below!  I love to learn new tricks!

 

How to Find Happiness When You’re Down & Out

Finding happiness isn't always easy. Here are a few ways to help you BE happy.

Finding happiness isn't always easy. Here are a few ways to help you BE happy.

 

So maybe you’ve had a bad day . . . week . . . month . . . year.  Maybe you’ve got the holiday blues.  Maybe you’re frustrated because you have every reason in the world to be happy and thankful, but you just can’t seem to pull yourself out of this ho-hum slump.  All you know is that there is something dragging you down these days, and you can’t seem to snap yourself out of it.  You are not alone my friend.  I know for a fact that happiness ebbs and flows, and sometimes those ebbs seem to be daunting and endless.  I have compiled a few words of wisdom from others (as well as a few gems spawned straight from my endless, inner monologue) that have helped me find the happiness flow when I’m feeling blue.


Act the Way You Want to Feel – according to one of my absolute favorite authors, and my personal happiness guru, Gretchen Rubin, “[a]lthough we presume that we act because of the way we feel, in fact, we often feel because of the way we act.”  I’ve gleaned so much wisdom from Gretchen’s books, blog, and podcast, that I can honestly say she has changed my life.  Finding happiness isn't always easy. Here are a few ways to help you BE happy.Just the other day I was feeling super negative.  My friend came to pick me up for a movie, and I immediately started complaining.  Literally opened the door, sat down, said hello, and began ranting and raving about how annoying my day had been.  She sweetly sat in silence and let me vent my frustrations until I talked myself right into the realization that I was being a Negative Nancy.  Recognizing that I didn’t want to bring down our movie night with my negativity, I just started laughing.  I was frustrated, tired, annoyed, and irritated, but I wanted to feel happy and positive, so I just started laughing at how ridiculous it all was.  I’m not going to pretend that everything that I was originally annoyed about went away, but laughing at it all definitely made me feel more vibrant, and the stressors of the day didn’t seem to be as relevant as the night wore on. (PS since you are on your epic quest for happiness, I highly recommend checking out Gretchen’s website)


Don’t Sweat the Small Stuff – I’m sure you’ve heard it before.  After all, Richard Carlson, coined this phrase as the title of his bestseller, and with over 25 million copies in print, maybe he was on to something.  This one might be tough to implement in the moment, after all, the dog peed on the carpet again, your husband forgot to pick up toothpaste on his way home from work, the baby has an ear infection, and you haven’t slept for more than two consecutive hours in over a week.  Each and every one of those things is Finding happiness isn't always easy. Here are a few ways to help you BE happy.reason enough to be completely bugged, and here you are dealing with all of them simultaneously, how are you supposed to be happy in the midst of it all?  So here’s a tidbit of advice from Richard Carlson himself, “you will never be completely free from life’s little annoyances, but you can become free from feeling annoyed.”  If it isn’t the dog urinating, or your hubs forgetting to run an insanely small errand, it’s going to be the leaky faucet or the toddler who doesn’t pick up his toys.  There is always, always, always going to be something looming over your head, and the actual, literal, only thing you have control over is your reaction to it.  Easier said than done, I know.  This isn’t one of those “oh, okay, I’ll just not be stressed by that thing anymore, gotcha.”  This takes practice, sometimes years of practice, but a little goes a long way.  So, when you stub your toe later today, choose to take a deep breath instead of spewing out your favorite four letter friends, find a go-to mantra to utter on repeat, and walk it off, because let’s be real, you’ve been through much worse, and you always come out ahead.


Finding happiness isn't always easy. Here are a few ways to help you BE happy.Enjoy Small Things – I know what you’re thinking.  We can’t “sweat the small stuff” but we should “enjoy small things,” isn’t that kind of hypocritical?  It’s not, and here’s why . . . both ideologies center around the same focal point: positive mind = positive life.  While we shouldn’t let those tiny annoyances bring down our days, we do have the opportunity to allow those tiny victories to uplift us.  So, as you entertain your nephew with a silly face, drink up that baby belly laugh.  When you schedule lunch with a childhood friend, put your phone away and enjoy a few chuckles over the good ol’ days.  When you whip up pancakes for your daughter, make a happy face out of blueberries just to see her smile.  Play cards.  Cook dinner.  Take a bubble bath.  Workout.  The list is literally endless.


Do Unto Others –  I’m sure I’m not the only one who gets bogged down with life sometimes.  We all do a million things everyday, anFinding happiness isn't always easy. Here are a few ways to help you BE happy.d there still seems to be a million things on the To-Do list when we can’t fall asleep at night.  In fact, the other day I was feeling ridiculously unappreciated, and I was beginning to wallow in self pity until these words danced into my stream of consciousness.  At that moment, I decided to heed this advice:  I have a friend who bends over backwards for his family, friends, and coworkers, and I suspected that he wasn’t receiving the appreciation he deserves either.  So, I sent him a brief text letting him know how much I appreciate everything he has done for me.  I immediately felt the weight of self deprecation lifted off of my shoulders, and his thankful response later in the day sent me another jolt of happiness knowing that I was able to make his day a little bit brighter.  Sometimes, we just need to take a few moments out of our busy lives to brighten someone else’s day in order to bring a little perspective to our own disorder.  In other words, even when you’re not feeling it, pay it forward.


Set Your Intention – this concept first struck me as I was sweating through one of my 21 Day Fix workouts and Autumn Calabrese said “set your intention for your workout.”  It never occurred to me before.  I had never realized that so many times I would start my day, or a workout, or a project, with half-assed intentions, and then I would sit wondering at the end of it why I wasn’t satisfied.

Finding happiness isn't always easy. Here are a few ways to help you BE happy.The first time I heard her utter these words, I immediately changed my outlook, not just for my workout (although that was truly the best workout I’ve ever had), but for my day and my life overall.  Even though I’ve always known that my mind could play powerful tricks, I never fully grasped how true that was until I began to willfully set my intention each and every day.  I’ll be real here, there are days when I do NOT set my intention, and I absolutely, 100% know the difference by the end of the day.  If you’ve never tried it, I’m sure it sounds crazy, but trust me on this.  Start small, set your intention for a workout, a meeting, a presentation, a blind date, anything.  Tell yourself before it begins that this is going to be a fantastic workout/meeting/presentation/date/etc.  Give yourself a few minutes to let a few negative thoughts come at you (I’m not strong enough, smart enough, pretty enough, whatever), and then debunk those thoughts with the truth about you (I AM strong enough, I AM smart enough, I AM pretty enough, and so on).  Eventually you’ll be able to translate those small intentions for moments throughout the day into large intentions for your day as a whole, or your week, your month, or maybe even your life.


 

As you can see, I don’t quite have the happiness gig perfected.  There are clearly moments and days when I throw myself a pity party for a little while until I recognize that I actually have the tools to just BE happy.  The reality is, I think that’s okay.  It’s normal.  Is there really a person out there who can be happy in all things at all times?  Nope!

That being said, it is completely and totally possible to find happiness when it doesn’t actually seem so obvious.  It is possible to pull yourself out of a slump.  It is possible to look for and see the good around you.  It is possible to spread joy when you’re feeling like a Debbie Downer.

What about you?  Do you have any tips or tricks to staying happy when times are tough?  I’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter, so drop a comment below and let’s chat!

Veggie Hide & Seek (How to Eat More Vegetables)

Need to know how you and your family can eat more vegetables? Here a few quick and easy tips.

Need to know how you and your family can eat more vegetables? Here a few quick and easy tips.

One of the most common questions we get from our challengers is how to eat more vegetables.  My favorite tactic is to hide them in the foods we already love to eat!  So, today we asked our challengers to share their veggie hiding tactics, and I was overjoyed to discover some new ideas to help sneak in some extra nutrition.  Here is what everyone came up with!


 

 Shake-yo-greens – adding a handful of spinach to your morning Shakeology is THE EASIEST way to get an extra serving of veggies in your day.  The best part?  You don’t even realize it is in there.  Spinach doesn’t have a very strong flavor, and it blends nicely, so add some to your Shakeo or protein shake for your daily dose!


 

How to Eat More Vegetables - Zoodles

Faux Pasta (aka Faux-sta) – pasta lovers everywhere are over the moon for zoodles and spaghetti squash.  Kids around the world are being duped, and maybe it’s not such a terrible thing for parents to be big fat liars!  You’ll need to acquire a spiralizer in order to transform your zucchini and squash into noodles, but spaghetti squash shreds easily into the fam fave without the need of an extra purchase.



How to Eat More Vegetables - Cauliflower
Mash ‘Em – Everybody loves mashed potatoes!  But our waistlines don’t love them nearly as much as our tastebuds do.  The solution?  Cauliflower mash or Parsnip mash.  Made the same way as our beloved taters, just boil, mash, and add your favorite seasonings, and you’ve got a tasty treat for the whole fam damily.


 

How to Eat More Vegetables - EggplantBut . . . Pizza – There are actually two tricks to this family friday favorite.  The first is to make a crust out of cauliflower, be sure to drain the cauliflower as much as you can for that crispy crust (click here for a much better recipe than I could ever come up with).  The second pizza hack is using slices of eggplant as mini-pizza crusts.  Eggplant bites don’t have quite the same ring as Bagel Bites, but believe me when I say they are so totally worth it!  Again, you’ll want to dry those bad boys out before sticking them in the oven, but they are certainly muy delicioso!


How to Eat More Vegetables - Mushrooms

Shroomsburger – when you are making ground turkey (or beef or bison or whatev) throw in some chopped up mushrooms.  Really, ground meat is a GREAT way to hide chopped up veggies of all varieties, but if you are trying to trick the monsters, finely chopped mushrooms can go almost completely unnoticed.  Chopped onions and peppers can get thrown in for some extra flavor, but they are a little bit trickier to disguise if you’ve got some super picky eaters to contend with.


 

Ma-carrot-ni anyoHow to Eat More Vegetables - Carrotsne? (it’s supposed to sound like Macaroni . . . I try) -carrots have a pretty mild flavor to them, especially compared to cheese, so this one is a super easy sneak.  Take some carrots, boil them up real good, stick ’em in a blender or food processor so they are almost like paste, and dump them in the pot of Mac N Cheese.  Stir and mix and mix and stir until the carrots and cheese are indistinguishable.  Voila!  

 


Do you have any veggie-hiding tricks up your sleeves?  I’d love to get some more ideas, so please share how you plan to eat more vegetables!

 

#HappyBLISSmas Instagram Challenge

December Photo Challenge Hey friends! With the holiday season officially upon us, we thought it would be fun to celebrate with a little Instagram photo challenge! I’ve created one months worth of prompts, starting this Tuesday December 1st. These prompts were selected as both a fun project to celebrate the start of the holidays and to get to know each other in a meaningful way! I’m hoping that a full month won’t be too overwhelming or exhausting, but let’s just see where the month takes us!  😉

We are kind of new to these photo challenges, but we are supes excited to see the turn out!  This mini Instagram challenge will be a great way for everyone to share a little of their own creativity and to get to know each other through the hashtag! I do hope you’ll join us. 🙂

By the way, the prompts are totally up to your interpretation. Take ’em literally or dream up something wacky. It’s all you! To participate, just follow the prompts and tag your photos with #HappyBLISSmas and @haleysred93.  I’ll be sharing some of my faves from you all on my Instagram, too! I also recommend sharing the image above on your blog and/or Instagram and invite your own followers to join. Let’s make this a fab holiday party! Woo! 😀

Holiday Sales are HERE!

It’s Thanksgiving Week, and we all know what that means, right?  BLACK FRIDAY is just 4 days away!  😉 12247198_10207752493991503_2132363035300103238_n I’ve actually never been a huge fan of Black Friday. I mean . . . let’s spend an entire day focusing on what we’re grateful for and then the VERY NEXT DAY battle it out at the mall?  No thank you!  PLUS, I always (and I mean ALWAYS) prefer shopping online to braving the stores.

 

That being said, Beachbody is launching Holiday Sales TODAY!  Some of our biggest and best programs are on sale, like Turbo Fire and P90X, and several program and product prices are being discounted up to 75% off retail price.  The sale ends December 1st, but I’m pretty confident that we’re going to sell out much sooner than that!

 

If you’d like to check out what’s on sale, simply CLICK HERE to peruse the sale items.

 

 

Drop a Size – Win a Prize

Interested in shedding 5-15 pounds by Christmas?
We’re running our next transformation group a little bit differently since it is the holidays!  We’ve been told that a little extra motivation is needed this time of year, and we want everyone to look and feel GREAT when we ring in the New Year, so we’re switchin’ it up!

Drop a size - Win a prize!At the end of the November 30 – December 20 group, we’ll be announcing THREE big winners.  Here’s how it’s going to work:

Two Ways to Join (pick ONE):

  1. Purchase a Challenge Pack through me, which will give you a results driven workout and nutrition program to easily follow (don’t you worry, I’ll get you paired up with a program designed to meet your specific needs).
  2. Pay a $10 fee through PayPal to join the group using your own workout and nutrition regimen.

 

 

Participate:

We’ll have 21 days together (virtually, of course).  We will happily provide nutrition, fitness, coaching, and daily personalized tips to keep you on track.  Your level of participation is completely up to you!  That being said, we have found that the more active participants tend to be the challengers seeing the best results.

 

To Win:

The coaches will select the top 3 winners based on total transformation with clean eating habits, daily check-ins, as well as weight/inches lost.  Submitting transformations photos is HIGHLY recommended (we value your privacy and would NEVER post your picture in a public forum without prior consent).

 

The Prizes:

1st Prize – Visa Gift Card to purchase New Year’s Eve dress/outfit of choice (value based on number of participants) PLUS Health and Wellness prizes valued at $50

2nd Prize – Health and Wellness Prizes valued at $50

3rd Prize – Health and Wellness Prizes valued at $25

We can’t wait to see everyone annihilate those New Year’s Resolutions before the New Year even begins!

Leave a comment below or send us an e-mail if you’d like to join!

 

 

UPDATE:  This challenge has come and gone with several FABULOUS contenders!  Our two top challengers were tied for first place, and remained tied after a tie breaker, so HUGE CONGRATS to Romi and Elizabeth for sharing the 1st AND 2nd place, and also  to Caitlyn for coming in as a close 3rd place victor!  Everyone was so determined and dedicated, and I’m so unbearably thankful for that I was able to be part of your journey.  Keep up the strong work friends!