Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Healthy After School Snack | Granola Bars

Everyone at my house is a snacker, especially our boys. They're busy playing and love to just grab a snack and keep on moving. Granola bars are one of their favorites and I used to buy what I thought were the healthier ones, but I've stopped for several reasons.
1) They're not cheap. 
2) They're not always as healthy as I think.

So I did some research and found a really easy and tasty granola bar recipe that we can make at home. It's much healthier and it helps us stay on budget in the snack department! Plus, they're loaded with protein and other healthy nutrients!

Healthy Granola Snack Bars
(Recipe modified from 360 Your Life)
  • 2 c rolled oats
  • 2 T raw sunflower seeds
  • 2 T pumpkin seeds
  • 1/2 c dried cranberries
  • 2 T flax seed meal
  • 1/2 c sliced almonds
  • 1 t grey salt
  • 1/2 c peanut butter
  • 3/4 c honey
  • 1 T extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 T cocoa powder
  • 2 T Shaklee instant soy protein powder (Non-GMO, best on the market!)

Preheat oven to 350. Grease a ceramic or glass 9x13 dish.
  1. Mix first 6 ingredients together. Spread on a sheet pan and toast in oven for 8 minutes. 
  2. Return mixture to your bowl.
  3. In a medium saucepan, combine salt, peanut butter, honey, olive oil, cocoa powder, and protein powder. 
  4. Bring to a boil over medium heat and immediately remove from heat.
  5. Pour over oat mixture and combine until ingredients are evenly coated.
  6. Pour mixture into baking dish and press down to even out.
  7. Bake for 10-12 minutes.
  8. Let cool, then cut and serve.
I hope you like them! Let me know if you try making them!

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Friday, September 20, 2013

Orange - Pomegranate Energy Drink | All Natural!

I love to drink coffee in the mornings; it's a comfy wake up ritual for me. But in the afternoons, I usually don't want something hot as a pick me up. So I created my own refreshing drink using some of my favorite drink mixes!

My recipe is easy, super tasty, and gives me that extra boost I need during the afternoon!

Orange - Pomegranate Energy Drink
  • 1 packet Shaklee 180 Pomegranate Energy Tea
  • 3 tablespoons Shaklee Orange Performance
  • 8 oz of cold water
Put all of these in a shaker cup and shake it up. Serve over ice and enjoy!

Do you have a favorite 'go to' drink for a pick me up in the afternoons?

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Friday, September 13, 2013

Friday Favorites!

I haven't done a Friday Favorites post in a long time, so I'm way overdue! Check out some of my latest favorite things! Note: I've not been compensated in any way for this post. I paid for these items myself. All opinions are my own. 

Up first, our new Klean Kanteen water bottles! I've been wanting to start getting rid of our plastic kids cups. I don't like them one bit. They are super hard to clean, have too many parts, and start to stink after awhile. I love the idea of stainless steel, but let's face it, it's expensive! I've had my eye on these Klean Kanteen water bottles for awhile and finally just ordered some for the boys preschool days. We love them! They're easy to clean, they keep water colder longer than plastic, and the company GIVES BACK, which is huge to me! 
Next, is Shaklee's Instant Soy Protein mix. We started using this a few weeks ago and really like it. Shaklee's soy proteins are all Non-GMO, so there's no need to worry about it being 'bad' for you. What I'm loving about this ISP is that it's so diverse! We've been adding some to our juices, to pancake mix, yogurt...really you can add it to anything and it doesn't alter the taste! Just two tablespoons give you 16g of soy protein!
Do you love skin care products? I do, too! Of course, I adore Shaklee's Enfuselle line, but they don't offer a few specifics that I've been on the lookout for. One of my wonderful clients sent me some samples of L'Bri skin care products. Let me tell you, I fell in LOVE with their Rejuvenating Facial Peel! Love, love, love it! The peel left my face feeling so soft and I had an extra glow! A huge plus for me is L'Bri only uses nontoxic, natural ingredients. Check out Shelley's site to learn more.
Finally, I want to give a shout out to Robin with MeY Decals. I needed some cute, but affordable labels for the boys lunch boxes, clothes, backpacks, etc for preschool. I found MeY Decals on etsy and gave them a try. Not only are they affordable, but they're super cute and they really are water resistant and stay on after a washing! Woot!

What are some of YOUR favorite products? I'm always looking for new ways to help support small or local businesses!

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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Easy Ways to Take Control of YOU!

As a work at home mom, with a husband, two kids, and two small businesses, I get asked all the time, "How do you do it? How do you keep the house clean, food on the table, businesses running, a everyone happy? Do you have a full time nanny or babysitter?"
No, though there are times I wish I did!

Truth? I DON'T do it all, hardly ever. I do A LOT though. I'm constantly working, and after awhile, if I don't get it break it can really take a toll on me. If you're in a similar situation, I'm sure you can understand.

So what do I do when I start to feel overwhelmed by not being able to do it all? Or when I feel like I need just five minutes to myself before I crack?

I just tell myself to make a change. Change my attitude, change my thoughts...you get the idea!

Along with the mental pep talk, here are some of my tried and true ways to take back control of that overwhelmed feeling.

Take Care of Myself, Too!
This is the NUMBER ONE thing to do! If I'm going to be on top of my game for my husband and kids, I need to take care of myself. So I make it a point to exercise at least 4x's per week, whether it's Zumba, an Insanity class, or just doing my own workout at home. If I go more than two days without exercise, I feel jumpy. I also really strive to eat right and keep my nutrition intake up. For the past 15 months I've been very consistent in taking my daily multivitamins. I've seen a great improvement in my overall energy and I have been sick only once, which is great since I'm chasing two active boys all day!

Cut Myself Some Slack
I'm not perfect. No one is. It's hard being a grown up with kids. Heck, sometimes it's just hard BEING! In today's world of social media and everyone posting only the good things about their lives, it's easy to get caught up in that and think you're not doing enough. You are. I am. And I have to remind myself of it almost daily. No, the kitchen isn't always sparkling. In fact, it's pretty darn messy right now. No, the laundry isn't put away yet. No, my kids aren't perfectly behaved all the time. Sometimes money is tight. But that's ok...I am doing the best I can and that's enough!

Get the To Do List Under Control I'm a list maker, but when I write out a list of 20 things to accomplish in one day, I get too overwhelmed and end up getting nothing done! I have my basic to do's that are what keep my home livable at any given time. If I can accomplish that list everyday, then I feel great. Special projects are ongoing and I just have to work on them when (and if) I can during the week. 
I have a small planner that I keep next to my laptop in the kitchen. It's easy for me to jot stuff down as I think of it or check off my list.

Schedules, Schedules, Schedules
Working at home is rewarding, but challenging. Until recently, I would do work throughout the day, but didn't really have a chance to focus on what I was doing. At the end of the day, I felt like I hadn't done much work at all. So I made a change and have declared the boys quiet time to be my work only time. Ya'll, it has HELPED so much! I'm able to focus more and I get a lot more done than I used to. Having a set work schedule, mine is 1pm-2:30pm, will help you feel in control of your day!

Those are my top must-do's for getting that in control feeling back. I hope this helps you if you're feeling a little off! Let me know what you think!

I'd love to connect with you in my Facebook community!
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Sunday, September 1, 2013

Easy Penne Pasta Recipe

I've mentioned many times that I'm not much of a cook. My husband is THE cook in our family...sometimes we call him Masterchef. :) However, the few things I can put together are one dish meals...those are my specialty, if you will. 

Today I'm sharing with you a super yummy, super easy dish!

Let me know if you try it!

Penne with Roasted Corn and Poblano, Beans, and Avocado
(adapted from Cooking Light)

  • poblano peppers
  • red bell peppers
  • ears shucked corn 
  • 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice 
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
  • garlic clove, minced
  • 4 cups hot cooked penne (about 8 ounces uncooked pasta)
  • 1 can black beans, drained
  • 1 cup finely chopped onion 
  • 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro 
  • chopped peeled avocado 

  • Preheat broiler.
  • Cut poblano and bell peppers in half lengthwise; discard seeds and membranes. Place pepper halves, skin sides up, on a foil-lined baking sheet; flatten with hand. Add corn to baking sheet. Broil until peppers are blackened and corn is lightly browned, turning corn occasionally. Place peppers in a brown paper bag; seal. Let stand 10 minutes. Peel and coarsely chop. Cut kernels from ears of corn.
  • Combine juice, oil, salt, black pepper, cumin, and garlic in a large bowl; stir. Add peppers, corn, black beans, pasta, and remaining ingredients.
  • Serve immediately and enjoy!
Have you joined my private Facebook group yet? I'd love to connect with you!

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