Tuesday, May 19, 2015

Nailed It

There are 3 things that must never be ignored - my nails, my skin, and my coffee game. When these are left unattended, you may want to think twice about hanging out with me. Slightly joking, slightly not. Thanks to the dry climate here in Colorado, my skin likes to do the same. No matter how much or what kind of lotion I put on, nothing helps restore my skin to it's original, silky-smooth, "babies bottom" like state.

But wait for it….I've found something that isn't lotion!

With the sun out and the temperatures up, wearing flip-flops is a no brainer when it comes to getting dressed each morning. What else is a no brainer? Using the Emjoi Micro-Pedi to make sure my feet are ready to be seen in those flip-flops!


The Micro-Pedi is small, light-weight, and the step-by-step instructions that come with it are easy to follow. When in use, it was 100% painless and did an A+ job of removing my tough, dry, and cracked skin - especially on my heels! 


While the appearance of my feet didn't necessarily look any different (which was a slight bummer), it's been over a week since I used the Micro-Pedi and my skin still feels soft. I'm now officially ready to free my feet from the winter shoe blues and head to the lake - barefoot and all!  

Disclaimer: While this post is sponsored by Emjoi, I am not receiving any compensation for orders placed with Emjoi. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

I couldn't leave my feet looking pretty and pay no attention to my nails, so I bought the Sally Hansen Miracle Gel at Target. I've read about this polish on various blogs as well as seen Instagram accounts that rave over this stuff.


All you need is the polish color (variety of shades to choose from) and the Top Coat. Two coats of each and you will have people fooled that you didn't spend $40 or 40 minutes at the salon getting them done. My favorite little bonus about this stuff? You can remove it with regular nail polish remover! I always hate getting my nails done and having to either pay to get them taken off or attempt to take them off myself, which ends up leaving my nails weak, rough, and just plain awful looking. 


If you are looking for a gel manicure that you can do at home and still have it last around 2 weeks, Sally is your go-to girl! She done nailed it, folks!



P.S. Do you have a nail and skin routine that you follow? Comment below!




Monday, May 18, 2015

Whole30: Days 15-21



Day 15

What I ate:
Breakfast- 2 hardboiled eggs
Lunch- turkey lettuce wrap with avocado spread, tomato, and onion, apple
Dinner- turkey burger (recipe adapted from The Whimsical Momma) on lettuce bun with avocado and tomato, sweet potato fries (recipe from Raining Hot Coupons), carrots

Comments:
  • Woke up on the wrong side of the bed
  • I only had one cup of coffee (compared to 2) and had *thee worst caffeine headache 
  • Wore some crabby pants all day and had intense sugar cravings so went home after work and took an hour nap! 1. I don't nap and 2. If I do it's only for 20 minutes. Guess I needed the sleep!
  • I woke up feeling a completely different person, went for a walk, and voila! My mindset was back on track!
  • The art of hard boiling an egg is a tricky one, but thanks to the Dash Go Rapid Egg Cooker, the art was perfected for me! Plus you can do anywhere from 1 to 7 eggs at a time! 
Day 16
What I ate:
Breakfast- 2 hardboiled eggs, banana
Lunch- spaghetti squash with chicken and creamy cauliflower sauce (recipe from J is For Judy) , carrots, roasted rosemary butternut squash and beets
Dinner- walnut-crusted tilapia on mixed greens with Tessemae Balsamic dressing, roasted rosemary butternut squash and beets, apple

Comments:
  • Slept amazing!
  • I had SUCH good attitudelike…I was weirded out at how happy I was for no reason! Ha! 
  • High energy level
  • No sugar cravings compared to day 15
  • I took K to get frozen yogurt after school so while she was loading up on candy and sweets, I took a sample of fruit because when you're on Whole30, fruit=candy. 
  
  • I stayed overnight at K's so packed my dinner and ate it there. Not even 5 minutes after finishing my meal, I was in the bathroom for, let's just say, way longer than normal. I don't know what I ate that caused it but it was not a fun night! 
Day 17
What I ate:
Breakfast- banana, handful of cashews, handful of coconut flakes, spoonful of almond butter
Lunch- turkey burger on lettuce bun with avocado and tomato, apple, Raspberry Chia Synergy
Dinner- turkey lettuce wrap with avocado spread and tomato, carrots
Something Sweet- bowl of cashews, coconut flakes, almond butter, and frozen mixed berries

Comments:
  • Got irritable in the afternoon but once I ate dinner I was fine. I am learning to say "yes" to an afternoon snack if it means not punching someone or crying over little things like my split ends or chipped nail polish. Yes, the struggle is real. 
Day 18
What I ate:
Breakfast- banana, handful of cashews, handful of coconut flakes, spoonful of Trader Joe's Raw Almond Butter
Lunch- spaghetti squash with chicken and creamy cauliflower sauce, tomatoes, carrots
Dinner- 2 fried eggs on mixed greens with tomato, avocado, carrots, and Tessemae Balsamic Dressing, roasted rosemary butternut squash and beets, apple

Comments:
  • Slept awful. I blame too much on my mind with moving!
  • If you can't tell, the combination of banana, cashews, coconut flakes, and almond butter is my #1 favorite thing I've discovered to eat since being on Whole30. So much so that I had Friday's breakfast of that combo for dessert today. However, too much of a good thing is a bad thing. My stomach did not feel well after - too much almond butter in one day! 
Day 19
What I ate:
Breakfast- nothing
Lunch- spaghetti squash with chicken and creamy cauliflower sauce, avocado, carrots
Dinner- turkey burger on lettuce bun with avocado and tomato, sweet potato
Dessert- monkey bowl, apple

Comments:
  • Woke up with an upset stomach from the previous night
Day 20
What I ate:
Breakfast- 2 hardboiled eggs, banana
Lunch- 2 turkey lettuce wraps with avocado and tomato, apple
Dinner- 2 fried eggs on mixed greens with tomato, avocado, carrots, and Tessemae Balsamic Dressing, sweet potato

Comments:
  • My mood was pretty down thanks to thoughts of moving and Steven being out of the country for the next 7 days and no way of communicating during that time
  • Went for a walk around the park to lighten my mood 
  • Craved sugar but only because I wanted to feel better about everything. Talked myself out of it because sugar is not going to be a quick bandaid for anything..ever! 
Day 21

What I ate:
Breakfast- banana
Lunch- 2 egg scramble with salsa and avocado, 2 sausage patties, apple
Dinner- turkey burger on lettuce bun with avocado and onion, steamed butternut squash and brussels sprouts, Coconut Cream Pie LaraBar

Comments:
  • Woke up sick. Like, couldn't be further than 2 ft. from the bathroom sick. I was (and still am) SUPER bummed because I was suppose to run with a relay team for the Colfax Marathon. There goes $75 down the pipes…literally. 
  • PSA: LaraBar is the new candy bar…if you are doing Whole30.

Last Thoughts: By far the hardest week of this. I had many temptations throughout these 7 days but somehow managed to talk myself out of them. This upcoming week is a busy one so my meals won't be as picturesque as they have been, but I did plan them all out so I could stay on track.


In case you missed it: 

Days 1-7 recap
Days 8-14 recap


Wednesday, May 13, 2015

6 Whole30 Approved Recipes

She was never a circus act but the way she could juggle was something I always admired. 4 kids, different schedules and sports and homework, a house to tend to and laundry to be done. Even so, my mom always had a home cooked meal ready and waiting on the table. Most nights I didn't mind what food was on my plate, although other nights I swore she cooked the meal just to make me throw a tantrum and want to move out. 

While my mom taught me most everything I know, cooking barefoot in the kitchen was not one of them. It wasn't until I moved to Denver and began living on my own that I was forced to branch out from Lean Cuisine's and Mac-n-Cheese. I will say that my skills of adding a pinch of this and a dash of that are still being refined, but I am quickly realizing that cooking is becoming a favorite hobby of mine. Seeking out new recipes and trying my hand at them makes my creative side come out in a new way.

Today I have 6 Whole30 approved recipes to share with you! Some are directly from the book released by the creators of Whole30, The Whole30: 30-Day Guide to Total Health & Freedom, while the rest are clickable links to websites in which they came from. 

1. Walnut-Crusted Pork Tenderloin from The Whole30: 30-Day Guide to Total Health & Food Freedom


2. Sweet Potato Meatloaf from livehealtheasy.com


3. Chicken Meatballs from The Whole30: 30-Day Guide to Total Health & Food Freedom


4. Creamy Cauliflower Sauce from J is for Judy!



5. Pan-Roasted Brussels & Squash from The Whole30: 30-Day Guide to Total Health & Food Freedom


6. Beet, Butternut Squash, Orange & Avocado Salad from The Whole30: 30-Day Guide to Total Health & Food Freedom



So whether your mom taught you how to successfully orchestrate a Thanksgiving feast or not, I am confident that a day in the kitchen with the windows open and music on will get you there. Dust off your Pinterest boards or cookbooks and have fun with it! … Maybe test your smoke detectors first though, ok? 



P.S. Did someone in your family teach you how to cook? Comment below! 




Monday, May 11, 2015

Whole30: Days 8-14


Day 8
What I ate:

Breakfast - banana, handful cashews, handful coconut flakes, spoonful of almond butter
Lunch - walnut-crusted pork tenderloin, pan-roasted sprouts & squash (both recipes from The Whole30 book)
Dinner - tilapia, mixed greens, avocado, pan-roasted sprouts & squash, sweet potato, apple
Dessert - walnuts, coconut flakes, blueberries, spoonful of almond butter

Comments: 
  • Tired but again, not the "my eyes are burning-I don' know if I can stay awake past 2pm-someone get me a Venti anything pronto" tired
  • Intense headache
  • Thirstier than normal
  • It was Teacher Appreciation Week but apparently the kids didn't get the memo that I was doing Whole30:

Day 9
What I ate:

Breakfast - banana
Lunch - sweet potato meatloaf (recipe from HealthEasy), apple
Dinner - egg scramble with mixed greens, 1 sausage patty (recipe from The Whole30 book), avocado, salsa, brussels sprouts

Comments:
  • Was not hungry AT ALL when I woke up. Maybe due to the later "dessert" I had?!  
  • Slept for 8 hours straight which only happens once in a blue moon
Day 10
What I ate:

Breakfast - banana, handful cashews, handful coconut flakes, spoonful of almond butter
Lunch - chicken zoodles with cauliflower sauce (recipe from J is for Judy), apple
Dinner - walnut-crusted pork tenderloin, mixed greens, brussels sprouts, apple

Comments:
  • Woke up with a bloated yet rumbling stomach
  • Pain behind my eyes and a headache to sit alongside it
  • Come to find out, that pain behind my eye was due to cornea abrasion
Day 11
What I ate:

Breakfast - banana, handful cashews, handful coconut flakes, spoonful of almond butter
Lunch - sweet potato meatloaf, apple, Passionfruit La Croix
Dinner - tilapia, mixed greens, brussels sprouts, butternut squash

Comments:
  • Energy like whoa!
  • I was housesitting/babysitting for the night and upon request, I ordered and picked up Olive Garden for the girl. Torture is driving 20 minutes with this staring (and smelling amazing) next to you:

Another temptation relating to staying at the house was that I walked downstairs to the room I was sleeping in and look where my favorite candy decided to be...IN THE BIGGEST BAG EVER?! Ahh, you're killin' me smalls. 


Day 12
What I ate:

Breakfast - banana, handful cashews, handful coconut flakes, spoonful of almond butter
Lunch - tilapia, brussels sprouts, butternut squash
Dinner - chicken zoodles with cauliflower sauce, sweet potato

Comments:
  • We had breakfast brought in at work - pastries, burritos, etc. - but surprisingly none of it looked appetizing to me! 
Day 13
What I ate:

Breakfast - banana
Lunch - turkey meatloaf, mixed greens, apple
Dinner - egg scramble with mixed greens, 1 sausage patty, avocado, salsa, butternut squash, Passionfruit La Croix

Comments:
  • Don't feel as "puffy" as before I started Whole30
  • Couldn't finish my morning coffee. Did hell freeze over? I think so. 

Day 14
What I ate:

Breakfast - banana, handful cashews, handful coconut flakes, spoonful of almond butter
Lunch - turkey meatloaf, apple, Passionfruit La Croix
Dinner - egg scramble with mixed greens, 1 ;alksdjflakjd, avocado, salsa, mixed berries

Comments:
  • Ate the last of my sweet potato meatloaf. GUYS! This makes me sad. It is unbelievably delicious!
  • Pants are too big. Is this what the Whole30 people call a "non-scale" victory?



Last thoughts: I can't believe I am almost halfway done! This already has me thinking what my eating habits will look like when day 30 is complete. If I can continue to feel this good, I'm thinking I may eat as Whole30 compliant as possible. Can't stop, won't stop!

In case you missed it: Days 1-7 recap

Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Playing Favorites




[ titles are linked to direct post ]


The Wheels on The:"We are like the wheels on the bottom of the suitcases that are rolling past me. We are moving, having no control of where we are going or where our final destination may be. The wheels on those suitcases are being moved by a person with higher power and like them, so are we."

Best Days of My Life:"Join me. Pick out the smallest of things and throw them a party because I’m convinced that every day is the best day."

When Life Gives You:What do you do when life gives you these things?

Miss Forgetful:"Because today I forgot that no matter how bad I want something and don't get it, there's a reason. No matter how many questions I have in my head, they will slowly get answered. And that no matter how lost I may think I am? I'm not. Plus, what ride is memorable without a few bumps?"

Never Listen To Yourself:"How often do we tell ourselves that we can't do something and days or weeks or even years later we do that something? We set our own boundaries around certain things because we are too scared to see what's on the other side. We are comfortable and perfectly fine where we are but know deep down we would love to just peek over that ledge."

Carrie With a C:The love story of my grandparents and how waiting for authentic love is above all else. 

Free.99:I bet you didn't know you had memberships to all these places. Best part? They are free! 

Best Hangover:"It's a hangover from a day and night that was filled with friends who opened their home, conversations with strangers that left me comforted, and food that tested my portion control self-control." 

Monday, May 4, 2015

Whole30: Days 1-7




Day 1
What I ate: 

Breakfast - banana, almond butter, 2 sausage patties (recipe from The Whole30 book)
Lunch - mixed greens, beets, butternut squash, avocado, navel orange
Dinner - spaghetti squash, brussel sprouts, grape tomatoes, apple, 3 chicken meatballs (recipe from The Whole30 book)
So I wouldn't pass out - Gingerberry Kombucha

Comments: 
  • Was planning on eating 2 hardboiled eggs until I cut one open and the yolk ran out. Fail. 
  • I was not hungry at all by the time dinner rolled around but knew I needed to eat
  • My hangry-ness started to show up around 4pm so had a few sips of Gingerberry Kombucha to "calm the monster"
  • Overall feeling = I SURVIVED!
Day 2
What I ate: 

Breakfast - banana, handful coconut flakes, handful cashews
Lunch - mixed greens, beets, butternut squash, avocado, navel orange
Dinner - roasted turkey on lettuce leaf, avocado, grape tomatoes, onion, apple
So I wouldn't pass out - frozen grapes

Comments:
  • Didn't sleep great through the night and woke up at 4:15am
  • Woke up still feeling full from the previous nights dinner
  • Headache
Day 3
What I ate: 

Breakfast - banana, almond butter, 2 sausage patties 
Lunch - spaghetti squash, grape tomatoes, avocado, 3 chicken meatballs
Dinner - roasted turkey on lettuce leaf, avocado, grape tomatoes, onion, sweet potato 
So I wouldn't pass out - Raspberry Chia Seed Kombucha

Comments:
  • So - much - energy!
  • I usually depend on 2 cups of coffee to wake me up but I couldn't even sip the mug I brought to work with me
  • After a week+ of my eye twitching (most likely due to stress), it stopped! 

Day 4
What I ate: 

Breakfast - banana, almond butter, handful of cashews, handful of coconut flakes
Lunch - mixed greens, beets, butternut squash, navel orange
Dinner - spaghetti squash, brussel sprouts, grape tomatoes, avocado, 3 chicken meatballs, carrots
So I wouldn't punch someone - Passionfruit La Croix

Comments: 
  • Irritable 
  • Headache came to visit in the afternoon and stayed until I fell asleep for the night

Day 5
What I ate: 

Breakfast - banana, almond butter, handful of cashews, handful of coconut flakes
Lunch - tilapia, sweet potato, carrots
Dinner - tilapia, steamed mixed veggies, apple, Passionfruit La Croix

Comments: 
  • Woke up hungry for the first time all week
  • Had to force myself to eat dinner as I had no appetite for it
  • Had such a high energy all day. No more needing coffee in the afternoon to keep my eyes open!
  • Bloated. I read this is normal as your body is getting situated with the "new" foods and way of eating

Day 6
What I ate: 

Breakfast - banana
Lunch - mixed greens, chicken meatballs, avocado, grape tomatoes, apple
Dinner - steamed veggies, sausage patty 

Comments: 
  • The hangry monster REALLY came out at night when I didn't eat dinner as we had a late lunch and I thought I could make it until after our derby event to get some food in me. Boy was I wrong. Bless Steven's heart, he drove me to Jimmy John's only to walk in at 9:59 and be told they were done serving customers. I thought I was going to take off my heels and throw them through the window. It would have been so easy to toss in the towel and drive to Burger King (desperate times, people), but we got home and I quickly ate up some Whole30 approved foods! 
  • Lingering headache all day

Day 7 

What I ate: 

Breakfast - banana, almond butter, handful of cashews, handful of coconut flakes
Lunch - chicken breast, roasted balsamic carrots, sweet potato mash
Dinner - walnut-crusted pork tenderloin  (recipe from The Whole30 book), mixed greens, pan-roasted brussels sprouts and squash  (recipe from The Whole30 book)
So I wouldn't lose my boyfriend - Passionfruit La Croix

Comments: 
  • Irritable
  • Tired

Walnut-Crusted Pork Tenderloin With Pan-Roasted Brussels Sprouts & Squash






It's the end of week 1 and I can, with all honesty, say that I have no desire for sugar right now! Throughout the week I was surrounded by bread and muffins and candy, but I had no urge to want any of it. Meal prepping and planning was easy, maintainable, and I enjoyed trying some new recipes and food combinations. I notice an increase of energy, clearer head and vision, and my body doesn't feel as heavy. I have a better understanding of just how much food my body needs vs. how much food my body wants. Bring it on, week 2! 


Many of you have reached out to me with questions about Whole30 and I would love to keep answering them! If you have a question that I didn't answer on here, please email me at: carrie.stavenger@me.com



Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Favorite Posts From 2012


Take a dip in the "P.S. Wish You Were Here Hot Tub Time Machine" and travel back to words and pictures from 2012! 




10 Simple Rules : Do you ever wonder how to pray? I do. I always wonder if I'm saying the right words, if I am being selfish in the way I ask for things, etc. Here are 10 simple rules on how to pray.

At The Cross : With everything you do in life, do it at the cross. Start and end, at the cross. Bring your worries, doubts, questions, prayers, excitement, everything. He brought it all there & we should, too. 


Suit Up : Our failures come about when we try to be something that God doesn't want us to be.

Challenge : Small changes lead to surprising rewards. 

On Being Found : As you grow older, you often don't notice when the game has started. You long to hide in your safe place because you don't want the reality of life to find you. The reality of bills, pressures, homework, relationships, work, routines. Where are you hiding? 

Be You : It is quite silly to think about being someone other than yourself. You are wasting each day away trying to impress people, do things that deep down you know aren't making you any happier, going through the motions just to please other people. Go ahead, start YOUR LIFE. Do the things YOU want to do.

Bringing The Tent : Failing = Learning.




Cauliflower Crust Pizza : It's not delivery, it's

Oatmeal Pancakes : Breakfast, lunch, or dinner - you pick! 

Fall Chopped Salad : Most popular recipe featured on my blog. The perfect salad for any occasion and a hit among many! 


My Getaway : Thank you, Blanche Lake. 

Where To Now? : How did you know where you were suppose to live? How did you know that where you are is where you are suppose to be? On the flip side, do you think that we will truly understand why we are where we are?