Saturday, September 6, 2014

Stop Stressing.

Hey guys! Today I wanted to talk, well- I guess write, about something we all struggle with. Stress! Ahhh the oh so lovely word... even if we don't like to admit it, we all tend to stress too much over things that we shouldn't.

We have to remember the things in life that are important and deserve are full attention, and the things that don't. Of course everyone is going to be unique, but I'm sure we can all relate. Things like our job, school, family, relationships, and our faith are all very important things. But sometimes we let petty things take over our lives and get in the way- like looking a certain way, social media, television, trying to fit in, fitness, whatever it is... And it's okay to have things you like to do to unwind like shopping, working out, your favorite t.v show- but they shouldn't become such an "obsessive" priority that you start to slack on your real priorities. Sometimes the stress we feel is really just stress that we are creating ourselves, by focusing too much on these secondary things, and feeling like we are trying to "squeeze in" the more primary things in our life.




When I wake up and feel stressed or overwhelmed at all things I have to get done, I take a step back and make a list of the most important things that NEED to get done. Then what I WANT to get done if I have time. And sometimes "making time" for something is as simple is giving up that 10 minutes of Pinterest in the morning. (I know ya didn't want to heat that one...) Working out is a priority of mine, in the grand scheme of things, but if I'm so busy that day with things like golf, family, church, school, and friends, I'll just skip it. I used to "have to find time to workout" and I would find it cutting into other aspects of my day. Missing one workout is NOT going to kill me. It's not being lazy, it's  being practical. Working out is not a "need to get done" on your list, it's a "want to get done."  Typing up a new blog post is a "want to get done". Typing your english paper that's due tommororow is a "need to get done."

I hope this is making sense. But all I'm trying to say is that sometimes all it takes is a little reevaluating of your priorities. You want to enjoy yourself, but sometimes just getting your "need to" things done first relives so much unneeded stress. It's all about finding a balance.

Another way we, and I do mean I, tend to stress is by trying to be "perfect." We all know there is no such thing as perfect, yet we all still seem to try pretty darn hard. And I don't know about you...but that's pretty stressful. For example, stressing about eating healthy is not healthy. Stress does way more damage to your health than a cheeseburger ever will. If eating healthy is stressing you out, you're not doing it right. And trust me, I've been there and I'm working on that. Along the same lines- working out should relieve stress (because it's something you enjoy) not cause it (because you dread it ). If working out is causing you more stress, than it defeats the purpose.

Anytime I feel overwhelmed with life, I ask God to help me take it one day at a time. He helps me see what's really important. Instead of stressing and complaining, I should be thankful with for life that keeps me on my toes.

And to end my little rant about stress... sometimes ya just gotta ask yourself "is it really worth stressing out about ?"

 The answer is usually "No."

XoXo,
Stephanie



Simple Roasted Veggies



simple roasted veggies
  • Asparagus
  • Broccoli
  • Red pepper
  • Onion
  • Zuchini squash
  • Coconut or olive oil
  • Seasonings of choice (I used Mrs. Dash original)

Chop up your veggies and drizzle with a little oil. Toss in your spices and a pinch of salt. I used Mrs. Dash, which is a salt free mix of a bunch of yummy spices like pepper, lemon, garlic, oregano, cumin, ect. 
Bake (roast) at 450 for about 30 minutes, stir them half way through.
Enjoy!

Friday, September 5, 2014

Healthy Sweet & Savory Breakfast Egg Sandwich


Hey everyone! How's your "end of summer" going? I know nobody wants to think of that! Eeeek! But I'm enjoying getting back to school, but been really busy getting back in the swing of things! I haven't posted a recipes in a while, sorry about that! But today, I have one of my favorite new breakfasts! I used to love Egg McMuffins from McDonalds (yes, I did. Lol) so I wanted to created a healthier, and frankly, much tastier version at home. I came up with a sweet and savory version, including strawberry jam, because I have to have something sweet in the morning! Eating a healthy breakfast does NOT have to be boring, it can be delicious! What better way to kick off the school year with a new healthy breakfast?! This sandwich is super quick to make (especially if you cook up lots of turkey bacon, and have it ready in the fridge) and you could even take it on the go if you have rushed mornings. It's a great balance of protein, complex carbs, and healthy fats. Did you know eggs are called "Nature's Multi-Vitamin"? There are vitamin that are only found in the yolk. Yep, so eat up on those yolks, folks! And feel free to switch up the recipe, by using different flavors of jam, ham instead of turkey bacon, avocado instead of cheese.... the possibilities are endless! 

Sweet & Savory Breakfast Egg Sandwhich
(serves 1)
Ingredients:
  • 1 Ezekiel Sprouted English Muffin (whole wheat of gluten free will work too!)
  • 1 egg
  • 1-2 sliced of organic uncured turkey bacon 
  • 1 slice of all-natural Munster cheese (or any cheese you like!)
  • 1 Tbs. Strawberry Jam

1. Cook turkey in a pan or microwave...(follow the instructions on your package!)
2. Meanwhile, Cook your egg in a non-stick pan sunny-sid up. (crack the egg into the pan and let it cook about 5 minutes.) Season with pepper. When the egg is almost done (I like mine runny! #yolk) place your cheese on top and cover with a lid, to let the steam melt the cheese.
3. While the bacon and egg is cooking, go ahead and slice open & toast your english muffin.
4. Once the muffin is all nice n' toasty, it's time to assemble! Spread one half of the muffin with jam, and on the other half layer your egg and bacon and close it up! Enjoy! 



I hope you guys enjoyed this recipe! Let me know if you try it out! Tag me on Instagram
@beautyand bananas! Have a great day!
XoXo, Stephanie

Sunday, August 3, 2014

My First Ben and Jerry's Experience... (Half Baked Review)


Can you believe I've never had Ben & Jerry's?! I couldn't either! I grew up on ice cream but I guess we never really bought it because 1. It was expensive and 2. We ate a lot of ice cream... Haha

But after seeing so many amazing Ben & Jerry's pics on Instagram, I knew I had to try some. I decided to go with the famous "Half Baked" flavor. "Chocolate and Vanilla Ice Creams mixed with Gobs of Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough and Fudge Brownies"

I thought "Okay.. It looks really good, but how much better than normal ice cream could it be?" 

And I was wrong... It was the most glorious ice cream I have ever consumed. The milky chocolate and vanilla swirled together reminded me of swirled soft serve cones. The gobs of chocolate chip cookie dough were huge!!! They were chewy and crunchy at the same time. The bits of fudge brownie were more like BOULDERS! Oh my! I literally had a huge bite of just brownie. 

Ben & Jerry definitely didn't skimp on the chunks in this one. The variety in texture is just unbelievable. I think that's what made this ice cream so amazing. Even just the ice cream is so smooth and rich and doesn't melt too fast. 

So the final verdict.... 10/10.

If you need a little treat while you watch Pretty Little Liars... this will definitely do the trick. ;)

XoXo, 
Stephanie

Monday, July 28, 2014

Instagram Q&A #1


Hey guys! I posted a picture on Instagram last week saying I was going to do a Q&A... so here it is! Let's jump into it!

1. What's your go to outfit for when you're in a rush? Makeup? - @megmo7

My go to outfit is probably my black LuLu Lemon Skinny Groove pants (so comfy and versatile!!!), a flawy tee shirt, scarf and ballet flats! It looks like ya tried but your really wearing yoga pants.... As far as makeup in a rush I keep it simple. BB Cream/Concealer, blush, fill in my eyebrows, a simple eyeshadow look (like the Naked palette), mascara and a tinted lip balm! If I'm in a rush but want to look more put together- I throw on a bright lip!

2. Have ever thought about being vegan? What do you think about going vegan?
- @cookandbakewithme

I actually tried to go vegan for a couple weeks during Lent. For a while I really felt guilty about eating animal products and genuinely felt like Vegan was a great choice. But personally, I felt like it cut out too many foods that I liked, and made it hard for me to eat enough. I usually don't eat much dairy but I had to cut out greek yogurt, which is a great high protein option, eggs, anything with whey, and of course all meat and fish. I was eating huuuuge salads for lunch, and quinoa with beans and veggies for dinner. There wasn't much variety. I also felt I turned to "vegan junk food" more... (which is fine in moderation!) I felt more tired, always bloated, my stomach issues were worse, got INTENSE cravings and I just didn't have the energy to work out. I tried to convince myself it was the right thing to do, but something just didn't feel right. And I definitely wasn't getting enough protein to repair my muscles after workouts. I know that many people do succeed on a vegan diet, but it's just not for me. I also think anyone that has suffered from any form of an eating disorder, it is would be very triggering since it cuts out so many foods and limits you a lot.  I feel like I need animal protein, but it's not like meat is the base of my diet- I just don't want to have to rely on tons of beans and brown rice protein powder when I could enjoy so many different sources of protein. I read "The Vegetarian Myth" and it totally opened up my eyes. I truly believe now that we can eat animal products, and do it ethically. There are so many health risks and deficiencies that could come with a vegan diet, and being a growing, active teen- why chance it? I prayed about it and I honestly felt like God was telling me I had to do what was right for my body. Jesus did multiply thousands of fish for the hungry didn't he??  So to conclude this suuuuper long answer- I respect those who choose to be vegan, and still love a lot of vegan food!- but from a health aspect I don't think it's optimal or necessary.

3. What's your favorite go to meal for breakfast, lunch, and dinner? And what's your favorite "cheat" food? -@milesfuelmysmiles

My go to meals are ones that are easy, I know I like, and that keep me energized. For breakfast my go to's/favorites are either egg white oats, a protein smoothie with lots of yummy frozen fruit, or a protein pancake/waffle! I also love eggs... oh! and toast with banana and nut butter! I just can't decide! For lunch- it's either a turkey+avocado+tomato sandwich, with a fruit and baby carrots with hummus on the side or a big salad with quinoa, chicken, avocado, veggies, and salsa! For dinner I'll usually have chicken or fish, with some kind of carb (usually sweet potato or quinoa) and any kind of veggies. I switch it up by changing the spices, marinade, or trying a new recipe- but keeping the protein+carb+veggies formula!

4. What do you think of the new high waisted shorts style? Ugh.. I don't like it! - @nikkisfitlife

I actually really like high wasted shorts! But, I haven't found any I like yet! Most stores just make them waaaay to short! If their done right, I think they're so cool and vintage-y!

5. When you have to get fast food what would you suggest? - @healthyjaime

My favorite fast food is without a doubt, Chipotle. It's really the only fast food I get. I love that they have higher quality standards and it's always fresh. I make my own burrito bowl all the time at home, so it's a no-brainer I love it! I always get a bowl (brown rice) or salad with veggies, salsa, black beans, chicken and off course...tons of guac! If I had to eat at Chick Fil A and wanted to keep it semi healthy I'd get a salad with grilled chicken and fruit. I think Wendy's has great salads. Panera also has really good options! And subway is always gonna be a pretty good option- just keep it simple with a salad or sandwhich with lean protein + lots of veggies!

6. What does your typical weekly exercise regimen consist of? - @thehealthypeanut

I don't like to think of it as a "regimen" or anything too structured- I don't like it to be something I feel like I have to do. I rest when I want and switch it up when I want! But I do have somewhat of routine I usually stick to. Every Tuesday, I always do the Power Pump class at my gym. I just looove it! It's a weight lifting/strength class using a barbell and some dumbbells. We do a little of everything- squats, lunges, biceps, triceps, chest press, pushups, shoulders.. And I usually will get there a little early and run for about 15 minutes. The other days of the week I'll usually do a day or two for lower body (one usually will be more quads/calfs and the other more glutes/hamstrings) another day for upper body/back. That with Power Pump, I feel like I work every muscle group on a good basis. I always finish off with a little bit of abs and stretching. I do a little cardio when I feel like it, which is usually running. If I feel really stiff that week- I'll do some yoga. And that's it! I can post more specific workouts if you'd like. :)

7. Do you make sure to have at least one treat per week, or just have them sporadically when you feel like it? - @thehealthypeanut

I try to have a treat once or twice a week (by that I mean something more "all out"  like a burger and fries or some Ben and Jerry's), but I also treat myself every day to something small If I want- like a piece of organic dark chocolate or something healthy I baked.. I try to have "treats" when I feel like it! I'm a firm believer in "treats" not "cheats"... I hate feeling deprived and I don't because I don't make anything "off limits!" But most off the time I really do actually crave the healthy stuff.

8. Favorite ooiaj recipe? - @thehealthypeanut

(OOIAJ stands for Overnight Oats In a Jar, if ya didn't know haha!) I have a whole post on them if you want all the details. :) My favorite is probably just basic vanilla with blueberries:
1/2 cup oats
1/4-1/2 cup greek yogurt
3/4 cup almond milk
1 Tbs. chia seeds
Vanilla stevia drops
Handful of Blueberries

9. Favorite healthy dessert? - @thehealthypeanut

Most nights I have a little bit of greek yogurt (sweetened with stevia) and some berries (or any other toppings) on top. I also love just a piece of good dark chocolate. If I'm craving chocolate cake, I like to make a chocolate protein mugcake. My favorite more elaborate recipe is probably these healthy 3 layer cheesecake brownies!

10. Music you're loving lately? - @thehealthypeanut

AHHHH so much!Haha but a "few" of my favorite songs right now are:
Rude
All About That Bass
Problem
Fancy
Ain't it Fun
Girls Chase Boys
Birthday
Talk Dirty
True Love Kills the Fairy Tale
Wiggle

11. Most fun thing you did all summer? - @thehealthypeanut

Probably hanging out with all my family that came to visit, or golf tournaments!

12. Do you watch SATC? (sex and the city) - @thehealthypeanut

I never really got super in to it, but if it's on I enjoy it!

13. Do you think we could be friends?.... What does your room look like?... How do you feel about frozen yogurt? ;P  - @ile_sepahi (my cousin! lol)

Maybe we could be friends.....You are in my room, and I have intense feelings about that froyo we got the other day! ;)

I hope you guys enjoyed this Q&A! If you'd like, you can answer the questions and leave them in the comments below! I'd love to get to know all of you!
Xoxo,
Stephanie

Friday, July 25, 2014

You can't buy happiness, but you can buy....


Just a little Friday reminder to go out and treat yourself! By a pint of your doctors ice cream or grab a friend and hop on over to Baskin Robins for some quality ice cream bonding time..because ice cream makes people happy and you should have a happy weekend! Haha :)

Because... I'd rather have a double scoop on my cone than a double zero on my jeans.. ;)

This is my flavor of choice... What's your favorite???


Xoxo,
Stephanie

My Favorite Morning Oats...{Plus How To Make Perfect Eggwhite Oats}


One of my favorite "never fail" breakfast is oats. A nice bowl of oatmeal. But not just plain old fashioned oats..I like to make egg white oats! If you've never heard of egg white oats, I know it may sound a little weird.. But the eggswhites add a great source of quality protein to the oatmeal, making it a great balanced meal instead of just a bowl of carbs. The protein will keep you fuller longer by slowing down the digestion of carbs. (If I was having a different protein source info still have plain oats- but this makes a bowl of oatmeal a great balanced meal on it's own) The egg whites make them fluffy and add lots of volume too! You can only slightly taste the egg whites, but I really love the flavor, it's hardly noticeable. You just have to sweeten them a little! Their easy to make, and only take around 10 minutes on the stove, but you can microwave them too for rushed mornings. I reccomend using liquid eggwhites, which come in a carton, instead of cracking whole eggs and separating the yolks. This saves time and makes sure you don't have any raw eggs to worry about. 

This is my favorite topping combo at the moment: strawberries, blueberries, 1/2 a banana, almond/peanut butter, and sometimes a drizzle of honey. Soooo good! I love the strawberries & banana combo..and the peanut butter and berries is like a PB&J :)

So here's how I actually MAKE them:

You will need:
1/2 cups oats (or more or less depending on how much you want/need..but 1/2 cup is a pretty good portion)
1/3 cup liquids egg whites 
1 cup water or almond milk (plus a little more)
Stevia drops (or honey or coconut sugar)
Cinnamon
1 Tbs. Flaxseeds or chia seeds (optional)
Toppings of choice (1 tbs. Nut butter, fruit, almonds, banana ect.)

1. Bring just over 1 cup of water to a boil on the stove on medium-high to heat.

2. Add the oats and then down to medium heat.

3. Cook, and stir occoasionally, for about 5 minutes.

4. When the oats are almost done, our in you egg whites and stir well. (Add more liquid if needed) Turn down to a low heat and continue cooking till the oat naw reaches your desired consistency.

5. Now add your cinnamon, flax and stevia and stir.

6. Pour into a bowl and your toppings! 
Enjoy!




Xoxo, Stephanie
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