Monthly Archives: December 2014

Aside

It seems I’ve been posting a lot about food and/or healthy living lately. Not that it is a bad thing, but I wanted to mix it up and try an “aside” post. So here is my aside note: my butt-cheeks are SO sore.

Now, I’m an active girl; I do legitimate, beneficial workouts at my gym 1-3 times a week, and I climb rocks at my rock gym indoors or outside on real rocks 2-4 times a week. I also just enjoy being outdoors and active. Basically, my whole body tends to get pretty evenly worked, but my rump never gets sore like my other body parts do.

Boy, do I feel it now, though. What is to blame? Box Jumps. I’m telling you, if you don’t do them, and you are capable of doing them, start now. They are amazing. Aim for 3 sets, 10 reps each and go from there. I used to always pansy out thinking I would nick the box and come tumbling down onto myself, but you can start smaller and in your comfort zone and work up. It’s well worth it. Your bum muscles are one of the largest in your body, so it’s only fair to work them as you would legs, back or arms.

Don’t waste another minute! Try it out, it’s quick and you can even do it at home if you have a proper tool to use as a box – do research for that beforehand for safety’s sake. All real gyms should have boxes for you to use. It’s also a good intermediary step before you go for squats.

Sore Buttocks

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Colorful, Healthy, Seasonal Risotto

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Hello my beautiful people.

Christmas is soon upon us… I hope everyone is ready to take the Holidays in stride and enjoy themselves! All my presents are wrapped (in the Wall Street Journal in an effort to save trees and cash money) and under the tree, plus I’ve been baking up a storm! Stay tuned for all my cookie pictures and recipes, I’ll get those up at some point after Christmas is over.

In the meantime, I have another recipe I would like to share avec vous that I snagged from EdibleRhody. I haven’t made this yet, but I figured maybe some of you would like to use it this coming week with all the festivities. Basically, all the ingredients in the title are amazing so in my mind it is sure to be a win.

Beet & Barley Risotto with Goat Cheese & Apples
Serves 6 as a side dish

Ingredients:

  • 3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 yellow onion (dice small)
  • 2 gloves garlic (mince)
  • 1 cup pearl barley
  • 4 ounces white wine
  • 1/2 cup beet juice (1 large)*
  • 1/2 cup diced apple (1 whole)
  • grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 4 sprigs thyme (stemmed and chopped)
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (2 ounces) goat cheese (crumbled)
  • kosher or sea salt
  • freshly ground black pepper

*If you aren’t lucky enough to have a juicer (though I highly recommend you buy one… they’re getting cheaper by the day!), simply puree 1-2 roasted beets in blender until smooth as can be. Add water if needed.

Directions:

  1. Bring stock to a simmer in saucepan. Heat olive oil in a heavy-bottomed saucepan and add onion, cooking until translucent (5 minutes), don’t brown! Add garlic and barley and saute for 2 minutes.
  2. Add white wine and allow to evaporate (2-4 minutes). Add stock, 1 ladle at a time, letting liquid fully absorb before next ladle, and still constantly until barley is tender (approx 20 minutes).
  3. Add beet juice and apples. Stir until liquid is reduced and risotto is thickening up.
  4. Remove from heat and add lemon zest, lemon juice, half of the thyme, butter and 1/4 cup goat cheese. Stir until combined. Season to taste.
  5. Serve warm, garnish with remaining goat cheese and chopped thyme.

Sounds pretty fabulous, right? I have to do some work today, but I think afterwards I may try this out. Or make more cookies. I’m on a pretty severe cookie making binge, and if anyone has any stellar recipes, I would love to be brought into the loop!

Well, I must start being productive now. Have a great day everyone, don’t let the Monday blues get you down. Turn on some festive music and do a little dance if you start to feel stressed, or even better, throw on an ugly sweater. Preferably one with twinkling lights.

Carrot Salad & Cumin Vinaigrette

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Hello my dears and Happy Monday! As I was combing thru an old Edible Rhody magazine, I noticed this recipe. I love me some vibrant colors, so I definitely will have to try it soon. Pictures to come when I do make it… but if you beat me to it, please don’t hesitate to share!

Rainbow Carrot Salad With Toasted Cumin Vinaigrette
6-8 Servings

Ingredients
For Salad:

  • 2 lbs washed rainbow carrots
  • 1/4 c chopped fresh chives
  • 1/4 c chopped flat parsley
  • 6-8 breakfast radishes
  • 1c  (1/4 lb) narragansett creamery salty sea crumbled feta
  • Zest grated 1/2 lemon
  • Kosher or sea salt
  • Fresh ground black pepper

For Dressing:

  • 1/2 t ground cumin
  • 3 T sugar
  • 1/4 c apple cider vinegar
  • 1/2 c evoo

Instructions:
For Salad: Trim tops off of the carrot and shave carrots lengthwise into long 3-4″ ribbons with peeler into bowl. Toss in herbs. Slice radishes lengthwise as thin as possible, if you own a mandolin… use it here.

For Dressing: Heat small skillet on medium for 1 minute then add cumin. Cook 1 minute or until slightly darkened and fragrant. Consistently shake pan. In separate bowl, mix vinegar and sugar and whisk in cumin and olive oil. Salt and pepper to taste.

Add dressing to carrots and herbs then top with feta, radishes and lemon zest directly before serving. Yummy!

Th-th-that’s all, folks. I’ve been combing through a ton of local/holistic magazines lately, so don’t be surprised if more of these start popping up. I hope the start to your week has been going well! x’s and o’s

How to Live a Long Happy Life — 8 Insights Backed by Research

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How to Live a Long Happy Life — 8 Insights Backed by Research

Because I want all of your lives to be long, happy and healthy!

TIME

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Ebola Rages on in Sierra Leone With Over 1,000 New Cases

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Ebola Rages on in Sierra Leone With Over 1,000 New Cases

Eeeek… the battle is not over!

TIME

In the last 21 days, Sierra Leone has reported 1,319 new cases of Ebola virus infections, the World Health Organization (WHO) reports.

The country has surpassed Liberia, which has experienced a decrease in cases over the last four weeks with 225 new cases in the last 21 days. Liberia has reported 7,719 cases of the disease so far, and Sierra Leone has reported 7,897. Sierra Leone is hardest hit in its capital, Freetown, WHO reports.

The total case load in West Africa is 17,908 cases and 6,373 deaths.

MORE: Ebola Fighters: The Ones Who Answered the Call

A total of 639 health-care workers have been infected with Ebola during the current outbreak, and 349 have died. That’s an unprecedented number for a health crisis.

“Our team met heroic doctors and nurses at their wits end, exhausted burial teams and lab techs, all doing the best they could but…

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Not Just A Pretty Face, But Natural, Too!

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Well hello there 🙂
It’s a rainy day today… but you know what? I actually am sort of digging it; it’s soothing to hear it outside my window, and as long as I’m still wrapped up in a bathrobe and toasty warm, it can hang around. We’ve been having some drought problems lately, so this should hopefully help.
If you aren’t so thrilled about the rain as yours truly, but still find yourself trapped indoors with nothing too exciting to do, here I am at the rescue! Here are two natural face mask recipes that I encourage you to try. What harm can it do? I mean, it’s your FACE! You should want to keep it beautiful at all times, yes? Yes. Plus, going natural is way better, as you know. There are too many companies out there that test on animals (cruel) and use sketchy chemicals that are probably doing more harm than good to that lovely mug of yours.
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So, without further ado, here are the recipes:
1. Carrot & Friends. The ingredients within contain natural antiseptics and antioxidants which kill germs – great for this time of year – and protect the skin from damaging free radicals while at the same time promoting the regeneration of healthy skin cells. Boo-yah!
Ingredients:
  • 2 Medium Carrots
  • 1 Tbsp Honey
  • 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
  • 1 Lemon

Directions:

  1. Peal the carrots and steam until soft.
  2. Mash the carrots until they’ve reached a creamy consistency.
  3. Mix in the all natural honey – try local if you can, too.
  4. Stir in olive oil.
  5. Squeeze a few drops of fresh lemon juice into the face mask mixture. Lemon is a natural astringent and will help clean greasy skin.  If your skin tends to dry easily, add only 8 to 10 drops; if you skin tends to be oily, add up to 1 tbsp. of lemon juice.
  6. Use a spoon to drop small amounts onto your hands and gently massage the mask onto your face for several minutes – you can keep it on for an additional 5 minutes for maximum awesomness.
  7. Wash it off with water in sink or hop in the shower.

2. Pumpkin Spice. This do-it-yourself face mask recipe with all natural ingredients is so incredibly simple to concoct and only takes about two minutes to make; there is no reason not to give it a try.

Ingredients:

  • 1 teaspoon pumpkin puree (fresh or canned, but with no added ingredients)
  • 1 teaspoon raw honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon Bentonite Clay
  • 1/4 teaspoon (or less) cinnamon powder*

Instructions:

  1. Mix all ingredients in a small bowl.
  2. Apply to face in a gentle, circular motion.
  3. Leave on skin for 5 minutes, then wash off with a warm, wet washcloth.

*Be advised that this is not for sensitive skin, so omit if you fall in this category.
This recipe will make enough for 2 face masks, but can be doubled or tripled to make a larger batch. However, a little goes a long way. I wouldn’t recommend making a bunch and storing it for later, either. Fresh is best.

If you’re not familiar with Bentonite Clay, it is composed of aged volcanic ash and is named after the largest known deposit of Bentonite Clay in Fort Benton, Wyoming. In this instance, it’s purpose is for external skin care, but it has various other beneficial uses. A good quality of clay should be a cream or gray color (be wary of white), and the texture is fine with a velvety feel. It does not smell or stain, so it’s kid friendly! You can find Bentonite Clay in various online stores as well as select stores that sell health supplies, such as The Vitamin Shoppe, Walgreens or Walmart.

There you have it my turtle doves. Now, what are you waiting for? Try at least one of those masks, pop on a Christmas movie, make some hot chocolate and let your pores do their happy dance. Plus, think of how much money you would spend for a facial at the spa… this makes your pocket pleased to boot. Stay awesome everyone ❤