Tuesday, December 29, 2015

Vitacost Haul and a Gift

Hey everyone! I know it has been forever, as always, but things get crazy this time of the year. You all know that though. This week is equally crazy because I'm watching the fur babies and as relaxing as you would think that is… taking care of now 6 animals (we added a fish and crab to the mix) is really time consuming. Anyway, I'm here to share with you my very first Vitacost haul! I heard about Vitacost from a lot of different people so I decided to make a purchase because there were a few things that I wanted… and then a few things that just got added to the list ;)

Here is the entire haul!

So this was the first reason I placed the order. I have heard of people using this to sweeten oatmeal and to add flavor to things like coffee, tea, smoothies and banana ice cream so I decided to try the chocolate and vanilla creme flavors! I will definitely let you know how it is!

This was another major reason for this order being placed. I am desperately low on Vitamin D (I'm pretty sure my levels are in the single digits at this point) so I needed to find a pretty good dosage of it in a vegan form and wouldn't you know it, here it is! I had never seen a 5000 iu dose before… when I took them years ago I took the 2000 iu dose. I think I'm going to do this dosage every other day and hopefully it should help and this bottle will last me 4 months.

I saw this and was intrigued by it! This is xylitol gum and from what I've heard xylitol is actually good for strengthening your teeth. It is vegan, gluten free, and non gmo so I decided to give it a try! You had to buy at least two so I got two spearmint packages since that is my favorite. Again, I'll let you know how this is!

I basically added these to my cart to get free shipping. It was either purchase a few more things to get free shipping or basically pay the price of these things in shipping and why would I do that?! I have heard that Justin's Vanilla Almond Butter is by far the best flavor so I figured I'd get a few individual packets and give it a try! I was also intrigued by these Mary's Gone Crackers GF Everything Pretzels. Hopefully they are as yummy as they sound.

Finally I had a gift I just had to share with you! My family and a lot of my friends and I decided that we would forego a gift exchange this year and we basically just buy for the kids now. I do still trade with a few of my friends and my family does a secret Santa kind of thing so we only buy for one person instead of everyone. I got mostly gift cards which is great but my friend gave me the adorable owl mug, owl coasters and box of chocolate flavored teas pictured above! How cute are these?! The mug is definitely going to be my work mug and I'm so excited to try these teas! And the coasters were purchased in Ireland when they went on vacation! I am so in love with all of it, she knows me so well! There was also a book about planning a trip to Disney because we decided we need to go there for a vacation sometime soonish ;) Thanks girl!

That's all I have for you today! I hope to be back with a resolutions/goals post for the New Year! I will probably post it after the New Year (maybe this weekend) but I definitely want to get it up to share with all of you.

I hope you all have a wonderful and safe New Year!

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Happy Holidays from Delilah!

Hey you guys! Ever since Thanksgiving I feel like I've been going a million miles an hour. Does anyone else feel that way? I haven't had a chance to get to anything I've been planning which has been annoying me but there is nothing I can do about it so I just have to let it go I suppose.

I did do a little photo shoot with Delilah for her holiday card this year and thought it would be fun to share a few of the shots with you! It is crazy to see how big she is getting. Anyway, here are the pics for her card this year! I don't know which they chose or what the card will look like but here are some of my favs :)

She's so silly :) She was fairly cooperative this year and taking silly pictures certainly helped. I hope you guys like them! I don't know when I'll be able to get my next post up which is annoying but come the New Year I'm really hoping to be able to buckle down and get on a more regular posting schedule. Ideally I would like to do a What I ate Wednesday post, one day for crafting/DIY/gift idea posts and one day for planning and budgeting posts. Those are my new years resolutions for this blog :) My new Erin Condren Life Planner is supposed to arrive this week and I can't wait! It starts in January so the first spread I'll be sharing is my New Year's spread. I can't wait!

Hope you are all doing well and that my beautiful niece brightened your day :)

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Changes Are Coming!

Hey you guys! I hope that you are all doing well! I am so so sorry that I haven't been around much. Truthfully I've been dealing with some stuff behind the scenes and I've been kind of trying to figure out where I want this blog to go. Clearly I'm not interested in it as it exists right now. I wanted to pop in today to let you know that even though I have not been posting recently I have been working behind the scenes. I've been working on carving the right path for myself in this space and finding the content that will make me happy and keep my interest in addition to being useful and helpful to you. I think I've finally figured it out and I'm really excited to revamp and reveal to you.

I have decided to focus on the two things that I have been focusing on most recently… my creativity and practicality. I've been working on becoming incredibly organized and I am moving my life into a planner. I am starting to plan out every week of my life to put it in front of me. This way I am aware if I am out of balance… whether it is out of balance in my diet or the balance between work and my happy place, it is right in front of me. In addition to the planning, I'm working on a budget system for 2016 so I can start to save my money for my future. Obviously the holidays is the worst time to work on this but I plan on having a system in place for the new year. I plan on sharing my planner with you, how I try to balance everything and most importantly… how I decorate it! ;)

I love to create, I love to give and I love to share my ideas. This blog will combine all of these things. I will share with you my favorite DIY projects (and working with the budget, they will be affordable!), my favorite gift ideas and any creative projects that I have on my plate. It will include the DIYs, cooking, photography and all of the things I do to get my creative energy out. I am a very visual person, I love color and I love pattern and I love to work with these things. I'm just going to make sure I share them with you now!

I do not know what my posting schedule will be as of right now because the nature of the content is more time consuming since I have to create, photograph and figure out how to explain everything to you. I do plan on getting into some gift ideas and quick DIYs after Thanksgiving to give you some ideas for holiday gifts and some fun tricks to save money during the holiday season! As I get more into these posts it will become more clear exactly how it will all go in the future.

I'm so incredibly excited to be changing the path of this blog and to be able to share my ideas and my life with you. I try to be an open book and I hope that you all enjoy the change that I will be making! I will be back soon! I'm just trying to wrangle my thoughts into a cohesive posting schedule that will make the most sense. I will be back to share that with you soon <3

Sunday, November 1, 2015

October Favorites!

Hey everyone!! I'm back with another monthly favorites post. I don't have a ton of favorites this month but I thought it would be nice to pop in and at least post a few things for you! What have you been enjoying this month? I can't even deal with how much pumpkin stuff is out now! I love pumpkin but this is craziness!

Anyway, here are the favs!

So I feel awful because I don't have the source to credit this picture but I saved it a while ago and I had to share it with you! I saved it because it makes me laugh my ass off when I need a good pick me up. The caption was "best photobomb ever" and I just can't deal with how adorable and hilarious it is. If anyone knows the source please let me know and I'll add a credit!

Fall sunsets are the most beautiful sunsets of the year. They are always so colorful and beautiful and I just love it when the sky is s colorful.

This was our Halloween tablecloth!! We got it at Target and I freaking love it. You all know I love my skulls so it was really fun to look at this tablecloth all month... and yes, we've had it all month!

I know you are looking at that picture and you are thinking, "what the hell is that thing?!" I have been debating getting a solid shampoo bar from Lush and this last trip to Florida was the perfect time to do it (have to keep those liquids in check!!). I decided to try the Lullaby Shampoo Bar and it is officially my new favorite shampoo. I was really concerned about how well it would lather and whether or not my hair would feel clean and it was amazing! It is also really gentle on your scalp which is perfect for me since my skin is sensitive on my scalp. I very highly recommend this shampoo! Each bar costs about $10 but they last 80-90 shampoos which I think is definitely a great value!

I have been shoveling salads in my face like a crazy woman this month! I don't know why but I have been craving them like crazy but I'm not going to fight it. I could be craving worse, right? The one above was mixed greens and romaine, carrots, cucumber, grape tomatoes and chickpeas. I later topped it with red wine vinaigrette. So good!

This Cashew Macadamia Delight Trek Mix from Trader Joe's has been a favorite snack this month. It is basically my favorite nuts and dried fruit shoved in a bag so I can just shove them in my face. It is cashews, macadamia nuts, pineapple, cranberries and almonds. It's so good, definitely a highly recommended snack.

Finally, we have Halloween! We had exactly 0.0 trick or treaters come to our house (at least that is what was told to me... I had to work) but Delilah did pretty well! She was the cutest Ninja Turtle ever and obviously I have a few pictures for you!

She's hilarious, I love this kid so much. I still can't believe how big she is getting. She is going to be 5 next month. The time is going too quickly!

I hope you all had a nice Halloween! Enjoy the rest of your weekend and hopefully I'll be back sooner rather than later ;)

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Back to Reality

Hey everyone! So I'm back from Florida and have basically a lot of the same pictures to show you from my trip. I didn't take a lot because I was just trying to be in the moment and enjoy the company so I have a few new photos and a few recycled photos from previous trips… I'm a creature of habit, I tend to eat the same things when I go to my favorite restaurants ;)

My brother was kind enough to take me to the airport on Thursday and was even more kind to take me to lunch before! We went to our favorite Turkish Restaurant (I'm pretty sure it may just be called "Shish Kebab" but I'm not sure… it's a mom and pop place) and I had the gorgeous Shepherd's salad pictured above. We also had some yummy hummus and bread that was hot out of the oven.

Of course we went to Loving Hut when I was in Florida and of course I got the Combo No. 1. It is by far my favorite meal there but I am definitely going to branch out and try something new next time!! I didn't go for the soup this time because it was about 85 degrees and I didn't want to fill my tummy with soup so I could eat the deliciousness of this meal.

We also did brunch at Ethos Vegan Kitchen as we always do :) I got the breakfast burrito which is full of potatoes, tofu scramble and faux sausage and is smothered in gravy. Oh man I am so obsessed with this burrito, it is so delicious!!

We also partook in some Electra Moscato. This is my favorite wine. I like very sweet dessert wines with zero dryness and this definitely hits the spot! I can't find it anywhere near me so I always make sure to have my fair share when I go and visit :)

On Saturday we visited the town of Cassadaga again and they were decorated for Halloween! This dude was chilling in the lobby at the Cassadaga Hotel and I couldn't help but take a photo. My friends had psychic readings done but I wasn't ready to do it yet (I really wanted to hear about their experiences) but I think I may go for it next time :) We had a great time and went on a really nice walk outside as well.

This was the view out the window of my plane on the way home. It was such a beautiful evening and the moon was so stunning and illuminated the fluffy clouds perfectly. I had an amazing time but was glad to see my family when I got home.

Do you guys have any Halloween plans? I have to work during the day but will meet up with Delilah later to catch the tail end of her trick or treating. She is going to be a Ninja Turtle! A girl after my own heart :) I will make sure to get some pictures of her if I can get there before she is out of her costume. If not I'll make sure to get some from my brother and sister in law.

How is everything going with all of you?! I hope you are all doing well and enjoying the fall!

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Checking In

Hi everyone! So I know I haven't quite kept up with my promise of new posts but I assure you I have amazing things in the works for this holiday season. Lots of food, hopefully some gift ideas and maybe even a chance to win a few gifts ;)

 I hope that you are all doing well! I'm still planning on coming back with food posts on either Wednesdays (What I Ate Wednesday) or Fridays (Foodie Fridays). That should be happening within the next week or so. Lots of things to update you all on and I'm looking forward to getting that going :)

Just two pictures because I love pictures.

I celebrated my birthday a few weeks ago and as part of my gift my friend gave me this AMAZING Fruit Loop scented bath bomb!! You guys, it was amazing!!! It is obviously vegan and it smells EXACTLY like Fruit Loops. I stayed at my brother's house from Saturday to Sunday when they were upstate overnight and it was cold and dreary and a perfect night for a bath. The scent was really strong and was perfectly sweet and citrusy and I loved it. If you are interested in checking out the products you can go to the etsy store here!! My friend got me some beautiful soaps and an amazing birthday cake candle that I burned on my birthday and it was so nice!

Our neighbors have an outdoor cat that wanders into our yard from time to time and she's just so cute I had to take a picture! She looks a little pissed in this picture but you know… I guess we all get pissed when someone sticks a camera in our faces.

Anyway, that's all for now. I'm working on getting myself organized and I will be back with some posts I hope you will all love! I hope you are all doing well!


Thursday, September 24, 2015

Thirsty Thursday

Hey guys! So I'm working on starting What I Ate Wednesday (or possibly Foodie Friday - we shall see!) for next week because this week was crazy but somehow I ended up accumulating tons of interesting beverages this week! Enter Thirsty Thursday. I wanted to share all of the fun things I found with you. I haven't tried any of them yet but I'll make sure to keep you updated on how they are!

It finally made it to my Whole Foods!!!! I was SO EXCITED to find this in my local Whole Foods, especially because they had NOTHING that I actually went there for. I picked one up and I really can't wait to try it. It appears that it is going to be heavy on spices with the promise of fresh pressed ginger and fiery masala spices so hopefully it is as delicious as I imagined it would be!

I found this beauty the last time I went to Trader Joe's. You know I have a major love of watermelon so to find this juice was definitely a treat for me. Of course I find it as the weather is cooling off but I am excited to try it. I'm sure it will be nice and hydrating.

The next two beverages were purchased from the only vegan bakery on Long Island called Sweet To Lick. I saw the drinks on their Instagram page and was there the next day to pick them up! These guys seriously stepped up the fall beverage game, look how amazing these sound!

The first drink is a Pumpkin Horchata!! What?! This sounds so amazing, I am so excited to drink this. I think this would actually be an amazing dessert beverage so I'll drink it when I want something sweet after dinner.

They also had this Cranberry 50/50 drink which is Cranberry Tea mixed with Lemonade. I had to pick this one up as well because it's cranberry iced tea with lemonade. Why wouldn't I pick it up. I'm bringing this to work with me today to have with lunch. I'll let you know how it is!

While I was at Whole Foods this morning (I got there at 7:45 AM, I start work at 10 - that's productivity my friends) I decided I couldn't just walk out with a bottled of iced chai after driving 20 minutes at the crack of dawn to get there so I made this amazing salad for lunch. It is romaine, cucumber, grape tomatoes, carrots, corn, chickpeas and dolmas. When I came home I dressed it with an oil free Tahini Lemon dressing. Lunch will definitely be delicious today :)

As for a little life update I'm really excited because I booked a trip to visit my friend in Florida in October! I wanted to get back down there before Thanksgiving because once Thanksgiving hits I won't be able to get there until the spring and the end of October worked out perfectly! I can't wait to go, I've never been there at the end of October and he told me the weather is going to be amazing and we have a lot of fun things planned. I just need the next month to go quickly!

I hope that you have all been doing well! I'll be back soon with a monthly favorites post and a What I've Been Eating Post. I have a lot of great meals planned for the next week!

Happy almost weekend!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Old Farmer's Market Haul

Hey you guys!! This week has been SOOOOO busy for me - it is our busiest weekend with weddings for the year - so I haven't been able to focus on getting food pics together for a What I Ate Wednesday post. I didn't want to go without a post at all so I am going to share a Farmer's Market haul from a few weeks ago (from when I was house sitting). I found a new Farmer's Market about 5 minutes from my house that is on Saturdays so I was able to head over before going to my brother's house for the week. They had a lot of different vendors from the market that is much further away and I was able to get some great stuff! I figured I'd share that with you!

How beautiful is this haul? In the top corner is a jar of Coconut Cashew Butter and a jar of Apricot Preserves. There are some beautiful peaches, tomatoes, corn and the most amazing loaf of sourdough bread!

Here is a closer picture of the Coconut Cashew Butter and Apricot Preserves. The nut butter is AMAZING as one would expect. I still need to dig into the preserves!

I really enjoyed this market! I'm so glad it's so close to me too. I'll have to try and make sure I can stop by before work on Saturdays and see what kinds of beautiful produce they have. I'll make sure to show you more hauls when I get back there!

I know this is a short post but I did want to get on and show you this beautiful haul. It's a few weeks overdue but better late than never, right? ;)

I hope you are all having a great week!

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

All The Cute Things

Hey everyone!! Long time no see, I know! I recently was house sitting for my brother and got some really cute pictures of the pups and I couldn't in good conscience not show you guys ;) I also have a few bonus pictures to show you at the end!

You think TJ is comfortable?! ;) I can't with this dog, he's so freaking cute and such a lovebug. He makes me so happy.

My sweet sweet Tyler.

He built a little nook for himself in the pillows.

All cuddled up.

This picture is freaking hilarious! My sister in law gave TJ a bath and wrapped him up in a hooded towel and was cuddling him like a baby. It was so funny, he is wearing his thoughts on his face... You know he is thinking "really mom?!"

My most beautiful picture! Delilah started Kindergarten this year!!! I can't believe it. She is such a big girl now I don't know where the time has gone!

This is a totally random picture but I wanted to show you guys what I recently baked up. I waste ZERO time jumping into fall. On Labor Day I decided to celebrate the unofficial end of summer/start of the fall season by baking Angela's Pumpkin Gingerbread (no spiced buttercream)!! Oh my goodness you guys, you MUST try this recipe! It is delicious. The only change I made was I used Whole Wheat Pastry flour and it is delicious. It is not overly sweet but has a ton of flavor. So perfect and I'm really glad I decided to turn on the oven to make this.

That's all I have for you today. I've been thinking recently that I've been missing blogging more regularly. I think I just need to figure out a posting schedule that will work out for me and my schedule. Once I decide what I want to do I will let you know! I'm thinking about making a two post per week goal. What kinds of things are you looking for? Should I maybe do a What I Ate Wednesday type thing and show the food I ate for the week on Wednesdays? And then maybe do another day of non-food related stuff? Let me know what you think!

I hope you are all doing well!

Saturday, August 1, 2015

July Favorites - All Snack Edition

Hey everyone! I can't believe how quickly this year is flying by! Another month has gone and I'm back with a monthly favorites list. I noticed that I found some really delicious and (mostly) healthy snacks and figured I would make this months favorites list all snacks. I hope you enjoy!

You all know that I love my Larabars. I don't buy them often because I enjoy making similar recipes myself, but once in a while I like to stock up on some to take as a quick snack on the go. The reason I'm including it in this month's favorites is because I found a new favorite flavor! My three favorites of life up to now have been the lemon, key lime (do they make it anymore? I never see it at the store!), and the coconut cream pie flavor. But then I found the coconut chocolate chip. It has all of the flavors of the Almond Joy candy bar but with none of the guilt and yucky stuff. I freaking love this flavor and I'm totally going to stock up on them for when my sweet tooth acts up. It would probably be amazing broken into pieces over chocolate flavored banana ice cream.... mmm.

Up next is this really yummy powdered peanut butter called Just Great Stuff. It is like PB2 but is organic and is sweetened with coconut sugar instead of whatever crap they put in PB2. I LOVE peanut butter and definitely still eat peanut butter... but sometimes I want the peanut butter flavor without the high calorie and fat count. This stuff is perfect for adding to oatmeal, smoothies and banana ice cream to make it taste like peanut butter without adding tons of calories and fat. That just means you can add even more stuff! ;)

I finally found them!! I found the Choco Chews tucked away in a corner in a Whole Foods that I don't normally go to so naturally I had to pick them up! These are clearly not the healthiest snack option but every once in a while when you want a treat and are craving candy these are perfect. They are supposed to be like a Tootsie Roll but unlike Tootsie Rolls, these actually taste like chocolate! They have a deep cocoa flavor that I really enjoyed. I definitely recommend these if you see them!

This is a given but I've been really enjoying summer fruit in July. This baggie full of mango slices came from the deli next door. They cut up mangoes almost every day and it makes a perfect snack if I'm feeling a bit hungry at work and want something refreshing. And it definitely tastes better when someone else peels and cuts them ;)

Finally we have these World Peas Fava Crisps! I had the Ranch flavor and oh my goodness you guys! These are AMAZING. I don't get the Vegan Cuts Snack Box anymore but I still get emails from them and saw these snacks in one of the boxes and decided to check them out. I decided to splurge and go for it and I didn't regret it. They are amazing. They are a perfect savory, salty, crunchy treat if that is your thing. They are high in protein and high in flavor and I love them. They have tons of flavors and they do green peas and fava beans if I remember correctly.

Ok so there you have it! A little something to satisfy all tastes... whether you like sweet, fruity, salty, crunchy, nutty... you are covered :)

Hope you are all doing well! <3