Monday, September 29, 2014

My meal plan for the week

I've gotten a few requests to share my weekly meal plan so I thought I would start doing it on Mondays. It's always nice to have ideas for new dishes so you don't get stuck in a rut, and the flavour, texture variation is both delicious and good for your children to get used to. My kids will both eat just about everything, Ella always did...Marshall not so much...that was pure stubborn dedication on my part. Monday is my main shopping day so I thought it would be a good day to share my meal plan as well.

Here's what we're having this week along with links showing where to find the recipe:

Enlightened Miso Power Bowl - this is from my Oh She Glows cookbook but I searched around online until I found the recipe so I could link it for you.

I try to eat meat free at least 2-4 days a week. This week it's three, although the above salad does have one slice of bacon per serving so it's not quite meat free but it's close and you can leave the bacon out if you want. This week two of the meals are vegan as well with no animal products at all. I am not vegetarian or vegan but I do try to limit my meat eating a bit and try to get in more veg instead. It gives my digestion a bit of a break.

So that's how we'll be eating dinners this week. Let me know if you try any of the above and what you think and if you'd like me to continue with the meal plan posts.
 Have a great week!

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Great Finds

This came across my Facebook feed recently and I loved it. Elizabeth Gilbert shares her advice on following your passion and changes it up a bit.

Bee Pollen is something that I've recently been adding to my diet. Here are 10 Amazing Health Benefits of Bee Pollen, a fantastic you take it?

As you may know I have been walking every evening for nearly a month now. I walk between 7 and 10km and while I love music it takes a lot of new music to keep things fresh on the walk. I recently decided to try listening to books on my iPhone while I walk and so far it has been excellent. My first book is Gillian Flynn's Dark Places. It's dark as the title suggests, but I loved her book Gone Girl and this is just as good. An audiobook gives me hours and hours of walking time, and I'm so glad I started doing this. Audible is the program I'm using and they offer a free trial of one book to see how you like it, an excellent deal.

Speaking of books, I have to share a recent library find, and one that I'll be adding to my own personal collection because I loved it so much. Joyous Health is chalk full of great information, recipes and photos to help you live a life of good health and wellness. I highly recommend it. A big bonus to me is that Joy McCarthy is based out of Toronto and you know I love to feature Canadian content as much as I can.You can check out Joy's website here. 

There are many online bloggers that I cook the most delicious recipes from and I love to share my favourites with you. Today I'm featuring this one from Cookie And Kate, I've made it many many times and it's SO good. It's also very easy to put together which is always nice.

Hope you're having a great week!

Monday, September 15, 2014

Fall Fashion Wish List

Have you noticed all the 90's trends making their way back into current fashion? Birkestocks...keds...florals...aztec..plaid (grunge anyone?)'s everywhere. It's also a throwback to my youth as my teen years were spent in the nineties, I guess it had to happen sometime. ;)

Here are a few things on my wish list for the fall:

Grey jeans. I can actually cross these off my list as I bought these exact ones yesterday. I love the seam detailing on the fun.

These great patterned pants. Old Navy calls them pixie pants but I call them cigarette pants....a real retro throwback that I love. Can't you just see Audrey Hepburn in these?

A slouchy cognac coloured cross body bag. It's hard to find just the right bag but I'm really digging this one from J Crew:

(image from Pinterest)

Love these, and they would go great with my new grey jeans.

Aztec print sweater. I love this one from BB Dakota.

Ankle boots. I'm loving these ones from Aldo (on sale!):

What's on your wish list for the fall?

Monday, September 8, 2014

Wellness update and Book of the Month Club read

Good morning! Happy Monday!
My journey to wellness is I've made some major (but very doable) changes to my diet and lifestyle and it's making a huge difference in not only my body but my mental state as well. One of the biggest changes I've made is to drop the junk, almost nothing processed. Overall most of the actual meals I made during the day were just that...homemade, it's the snacking that was killing me. Ice cream (or Cheezies...eeek!) in the evening was not only making me feel icky but it was adding pounds too. Now, it's not like this was any kind of revelation, I knew these things were bad I was just doing them anyway. In the past when I've tried any kind of diet goal was always weight loss..."lets get skinny!", this time around that is not my goal. This time my focus is on getting fit and healthy...weight loss is a side perk.

My meals are completely focused on nourishment and giving my body what it needs to perform at it's best. I eat slowly and mindfully, paying close attention to when I've had enough rather than mindless eating or snacking. Trainer Kathleen said something that really stuck at our last meeting...."Hunger is not an emergency".  We are not going to starve if we miss a meal, or are late having lunch, or don't get to eat when we think we should. Slow down, don't shovel food in, or eat when you aren't hungry because you won't get a chance again for a few hours. This is a bit of a mental game, well, more than a bit really...slowing down can be hard. Another thing that stuck from Kathleen is "we can justify any food when we're hungry", and she is so right. I find that if I carry a little something with me ( a baggy of almonds, a banana, an apple) it's almost like a little reassurance that there is something there if I need it. If I do get in the situation where I'm really feeling hungry I know that I have a food choice that is good for me rather than one that is not nourishing my body.
I have gone from pretty much zero activity to walking 7 to 10 kilometers every single night, almost without fail. My husband Chris knows that I'm heading out the door at 7:30 always, and while I did fight a little guilt about not putting the kids to bed and leaving him to do it by himself I really feel like this is important enough to me that it has to happen. It's me time, this walking is good for both my physical and mental well being, and it helps me sleep better.

To show you what this change has done for me beyond the mental aspect I'll tell you about my two week results when I went to see Kathleen:

Down 7.5lbs
Lost 6 inches
Down 2.75% body fat

That's just in two weeks...crazy hey?

I've started doing some gentle stretches with my kids right after we wake up in the morning. It's our family yoga time and they (and I) love it. It only takes about 10 minutes, and it's such a fabulous way to start the day.
I have been looking into some local yoga classes for myself but in the interest of time and money management I think I might be better off doing some of it at home. Does anyone have any recommendations? Any great online sites?

Have you started your Book of the Month Club read yet? This one is written by a waitress from Calgary, Alberta and has gotten great reviews. What do you think?

I'm off to make breakfast....a piece of whole wheat toast with avocado and an egg, enjoy your day!

Here's a great tune if you need an extra little push:

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Fitbit Flex

Just a quick post today in the middle of a busy week....have you heard of the Fitbit Flex?

This little device is so awesome and worth every penny. It's super lightweight so it hardly feels like you have anything on and it tracks your footsteps all day long. You can set goals (mine is set at 15,000 and I've been hitting it nearly everyday), track your calories if you want to and find out how many hours of sleep you're getting (and if you wake up or are restless during the night). You can check in via phone or computer at any time to see how you're doing (or a quick double tap on the device shows you how close you are to your goal) and at the end of the week you get an email telling you how you did that week and what your average was daily. 
It's highly motivating to have a specific goal everyday and I find myself taking extra steps to complete jobs or instead of sending the kids to grab something for me I do it myself.
The band comes in lots of different colours (I have it in slate) but if you want to keep it chic then you can head on over to Tory Burch for something really beautiful.

I love this bracelet:

Do you have a Fitbit Flex? What do you think of it?