Sunday, May 1, 2016

Dave’s Killer Bread

I had read about how bad different types of bread are for you because of the ingredients and preservatives they put in them but I never found one that tasted great but was great for you.  That is, until I heard about Dave.


Dave’s Killer Bread can be found at various local store including Sprouts, Whole Foods, HEB, Kroger, Costco, etc.  (go here to find a store near you).  It is either in the refrigerated bread section, or the regular bread section (not the frozen section).  It is healthy, nutritious and uses whole grains. 

Tip:  If the ingredients say “enriched” flour, don’t eat it!  That is sneaky because “enriched” sounds good, but it isn’t!


Another thing I love about Dave’s Killer Bread is that they have a 2nd chance program for ex-convicts.  About 30% of their workforce are former inmates that they have given a 2nd chance to.  I am not sure if you know but a lot of convicts go in at a young age and change while incarcerated and go on to be model citizens after release.  (Not everyone, but enough for them to be given a 2nd chance)

Just like with any opportunity, some seize it and others throw it away.  Luckily, Dave’s doesn’t judge the “good ones” from the “bad ones”, everyone gets a chance. 


Isn’t that neat?  You get an awesome product that is great for you and then you get to help out the community.  Win-Win.


(This is NOT a paid post.  I just wanted to share an awesome bread and an awesome program)

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Escape the Room Houston

For my friend Savannah’s birthday a group of us went to Escape the Room Houston and tried escaping the “Rec Room”.   They have 3 rooms total (Rec Room, The Apartment, and Mission Control) and are building a few more soon.  Savannah chose the Rec Room because the she had already done the Apartment and the Mission Control was booked (or so it was too science-y??). 


Anyway, the Rec Room was basically an 80’s themed basement type area and all the clues were pertaining to the 80’s.  There were padlocks on the wall and you had to figure out what clues led to what answer with the combination.  I don’t want to give away much more just in case you decide to do it, but there is more to it than just padlocks.  You can use your cell phone for the clues but no pictures.

We did not make it out.  We were stuck on the last clue and we almost had it but we didn’t make it in time.  One of the girls in the group thought about the answer but thought “Nah, that wouldn’t be it”.  So ALWAYS just trust yourself to say even the silliest of things you think are the answers because in our case, it was the right answer.

We lost.




                                                                   

Friday, April 29, 2016

Vegan Cupcakes

I have a bit of a sweet tooth.  I can resist cookies and a lot of other deserts but anything having to do with cake or cupcakes, all will power goes out the window.  Luckily they make vegan cupcakes at Sprinkles!!




The strawberry ones are what I REALLY wanted…oh how I love strawberry anything!




 BUT, they weren’t vegan so I got Red Velvet.  Normally I don’t like red velvet, but this one was surprisingly good.  I am going to try and bake some vegan goodies soon!  Look!  They even have a little V and everything!  The icing was sooooooo good.  I think I like icing more than the cake part. :)


Friday, April 15, 2016

Best sandwich ever!

 So I didn’t mention that on April 1st I adopted a plant based, whole foods diet.  I watched the documentary Forks over Knives on Netflix and was hooked.  I watched it a few years ago and was intrigued, but I couldn’t see myself giving up cheese.  I heart cheese way too much to give it up.

Or so I thought. I made the decision on Saturday and started (with a little cheating) on Monday but went “all out” on April 1st.  I will admit that my sister, bro-in-law and his aunt are all doing it too so I am not completely alone.

I did a few things that have helped me stay more focused.  I downloaded vegan podcasts, followed vegan people on Instagram, meal plan and bought a monthly meal plan to Meal Mentor.   Meal prepping/planning is the key, especially if you commute 2 hours each day to and from work.  If I wake up late (which is actually happening less now that I have more energy) I do not want to make something before I go to work, I like to grab and go.  I can eat breakfast at my desk and just stick the rest of my food in the fridge until lunch or snack time.  If I don’t have something prepared I just go out to eat, which I can 100% make food choices that fit in the diet but they don’t always fit in the budget.

One of the times I went out was to Leibman’s.  it is a local deli and fine foods/gifts store that I have loved for a while.  They have the best dips and I always go there to pick something up when I go to a party.  Now, I have to find another dip that works because I used to get caviar and cream cheese dip that everyone loved! 

Anyway, the deli has 3 vegetarian options that can be made vegan/plant based by tweaking it.  I made the sandwich at home have eaten it all week.

I used Dave’s Killer Bread, arugula, thinly sliced tomato, thinly sliced cucumber, walnuts (for crunch), avocado, onion sprouts and balsamic vinegar.  SO GOOD!!!  You can make this sandwich even if you aren’t plant based; I know I would have loved it if I wasn’t plant based.

(BTW, sorry, I took pictures with my phone as I was making the sandwich for work...hence the tupperware container)

Sunshine Crunch Sandwich

Add the arugula (I have fallen in love with a green)


Add the cucumber



Add the tomato


Add chopped walnuts

Add thinly sliced avocado


Add the sprouts.


Add the balsamic vinegar when you are ready to eat it.  I like to cut mine into triangles.

Monday, March 7, 2016

Who will you be waiting for?

Have you ever thought of who will be waiting for you when you get to Heaven?  Your family members?  Your friends?  Your mentors? 



I heard this phrase the other day, “who will YOU be waiting for”?  Who have you mentored in life or led to Christ that will one day be in Heaven?  Isn’t that a neat thought?  Can you just imagine that the people you have poured into will one day sing praise to Jesus with you in Heaven?

We always think about the people who have done so much for us but really, we need to think about what we can do for others.  It just gives me chills thinking about it.  Jesus had a life of servitude towards others and called us to do it too.  It shouldn’t be “what can you do for me” it SHOULD be “what can I do to help you”.

Even if someone goes to Heaven before you, wouldn’t it be cool to know that you played a hand in helping them get there?  I mean, they did the legwork (along with Jesus), but you played a part.  Who will you be rooting on from Heaven?  I want to be at those gates greeting people all the time!  I wonder if they have a bell or a paging service that when someone you knows is coming up, you greet them! 


When you get up there will you hear “Well done, good and faithful servant” or will you hear something else?  

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Creating “Wins” Daily

Yesterday I asked the question, “How is your life different today than it was the same day last week.”  Personally, I couldn’t answer in the positive because I hadn’t made any significant changes for the better from week to week.  I came up with a personal challenge today while at lunch that will help me to meet my goals for the next year.  I figured if I get so many “wins” per week I would be that much closer to my goals.

First, we need to write our 5 year vision.  What do you want your life to look at spiritually, with your family, professionally, personal development, physical health, financial and socially/community?

Below are the areas in my life that I am going to try to “win” at daily, which in turn will help me “win” monthly and yearly.  I made some suggestions for myself on what a “win” in each category would be, but I can always add more “wins” as they happen.  Feel free to add some suggested “wins” if you can think of some. :)

Let me know if you decide to do this!  I would love a Life “Wins” Running Buddy to help me stay accountable!!  We need to give ourselves more credit for what we DO do, instead of ONLY beating ourselves up over what we don’t do.  Or letting ourselves slack over things we shouldn’t slack at.

Rules:
Multiple wins can be done per category per day. 
Each month I want to track how many “wins” I get and then try to increase it.  Maybe give myself a reward each quarter?  Like maybe XX-XX wins equal X prize for me. 
Write down your “wins” each day so you can go back and remember them on “bad days” when you need a little encouragement.
Spiritual Life
Go to church
Having a quiet time
Pray at every meal
Pray at night before I go to sleep
Invite someone to church
Pray with someone
Pray for someone
Go to a Bible study
Thank God for all the blessings as you see them
Volunteer at church or church event

Family Life
Talk to a family member
Spend time with a family member (quality time-no phone or TV!)

Professional Life
Get 5 New Leads a Day
Place 2 bookings on calendar a day
Sell $100
Have a party
Listen to the Million $ Message
Say business daily affirmations
Add someone to my team

Personal Development
Read 1 chapter of a personal development book
Listen to a training/motivational/sermon while getting dressed
Listen to a training/motivational/sermon while commuting to work/errands
Say personal daily affirmations
Read my 5 year life vision
Post a positive message on social media to inspire others
Say NO when someone tries to gossip to you
Slap my wrist when I try to gossip about someone (stop yourself before saying it)

Physical Health
Workout at Curves
Walk 1 Mile (1 “win” for each mile)
Get 10,000 steps on my fitbit
Eating a lean protein
Have a salad with an oil/vinegar dressing-no white stuff
Have a broth based soup before  a meal (or as a meal)
Bringing my lunch to work (healthy, no leftovers)
Walk the dog around the block
Do 30 minutes of exercise (non-Curves)
Resist something bad to eat
Lose 1 lb
Fit into the clothing size below
Sign up for a race or other physical challenge that you would need to train for

Financial Health
Bringing my lunch to work (homemade-not leftovers)
Saving $100 each week (1 “win” for each $100)
Earn and extra $30 (and save it)
Only 1 “cheat meal” a week

Social Life/Community Life
Seeing 1 friend in person
Talking to 1 friend
Doing a bucket list item
Doing a bucket list item with 1 or more friends
Trying something new
Sending an encouraging note to someone
Make someone smile
Do a random act of kindness
Give someone a (honest) compliment
Connect with an old friend
Have a friend workout with you
Meet a new friend while working out
Send a care package

Say “yes” to something you normally would say “no” to

Monday, February 29, 2016

How Is Your Life Different From Last Week?

How is your life different from one week ago?  I’ve had this thought running through my head for the past few weeks.  I get paid on Tuesdays and I was thinking about how much I saved from one week to the next.  Or how much I SPENT from last week to the next.  Or how much I have paid towards my student loans from last week to the next. Etc. etc. etc.

THEN I got to thinking, how has my LIFE changed from one week to the next. Did you make a step forward or backward in your career?  Did you make a step forward or backward in your relationship?  Did you make a step forward or backward in your walk with God?  Did you make a step forward or backward in your fitness?

To have a good YEAR you need good MONTHS.  For good MONTHS you need to have good WEEKS.  To have good WEEKS you need to have good DAYS.  To have good DAYS you need to have good HOURS.  To have good HOURS you need good Minutes. 

Let’s take the fitness example.  My goal is to lose 30 lbs this year.  Broken down by months that is 2.5 lbs per MONTH (OK, side note…as I am breaking it down by pound/month I am thinking I’m going to UP my goal, but for this post, I will keep it since I already did the math).  Or .625  lbs per week or .089 lbs per day.  Totally Do-able.

YOU CAN START A DIET IN THE MIDDLE OF A BAG OF POTATO CHIPS.
 
He looks so sad, doesn't he?  Lay's ARE really good though


So why don’t we?  We (or at least I do) WHINE and COMPLAIN that we are overweight or that we aren’t where we want to be in life.  We scroll through Facebook or Instagram and see other’s “achieving” the goals we set out for ourselves and then feel deflated because we don’t have those things. 

Two things:  
1.  FB is someone’s highlight reel and our reality is our entire movie.  We can’t judge our circumstances by their highlight reel. 

2.  We are quick to be envious of that person but we aren’t looking at the WORK it took to get there.  Granted, some people seem like they are given things (sometimes that’s true) but for the vast majority of people, they WORKED for it.  You only see the beautiful ballerina that is so graceful, while you trip going UP the stairs (that happened to me last week-yes, going UP).  You don’t see her aching, calloused feet beneath her satin slippers.  You don’t see that sales person bust their ass to earn that trip of a lifetime, you only get to see the pictures of them taking selfies from the Eiffel Tower on said trip.
 
Sorry (not sorry) for the graphic ballerina picture.
So, what can YOU (me included) do to make your life your dream life TODAY?  How do you eat an elephant?  One bite at a time. 

Maybe you sell something that you bought that you don’t need anymore (did you ever need that??) and set that money aside for a debt payment.  Or you make that profile on match.com to see if you can find that one fish in the sea.  Or maybe you cannot eat that rice krispie treat that you REALLY WANTED at Newk’s today at lunch and eat fruit instead.   Or go walk a mile because you don’t can’t seem to do three miles right now.  Baby steps.
 
I love this movie BTW!!
So, anyone with me to make a change TODAY and then the next day and then the next day for your business, personal life, spiritual life, financial life, etc. better for tomorrow and then a month from now, and then a year from now?  The baby steps you take will create a snowball effect on your life to make you that much closer to your dream life and your dream circumstances.


Game Plan:
1.  Make a list of what you want your life to look like within 5 years.  Salary, relationships, financial fitness, physical fitness, etc. 

2.  Break that down by year. Then by months, days, hours, minutes, etc.  Keep in mind that you can't break it down exactly evenly.  Your snowball will take effect at some point and you will begin to see the "light at the end of the tunnel" and start to move faster towards you goal.   

3.  Start with one change at a time, otherwise you might become overwhelmed.  Example:  Don't plan on getting up at 5 am EVERY DAY, NO MATTER WHAT to workout and have a quiet time. Maybe get up 30 minutes earlier for a few weeks to do one or the other.  Then in a few weeks time, get up another 30 minutes earlier to do the other one.  Then a few weeks later add something else.  If you make it your goal to go to the gym for 3 hours a day, but you are tired (burned out) or have errands to run, you will beat yourself up for not doing the "NO MATTER WHAT" scenario in your head, which will leave you deflated and make you want to give up.  Baby Steps.

4.  Give your self a break.  

Remember, ALL OF THE WISHES AND PLAN MAKING WON'T WORK UNTIL YOU TAKE ACTION ON YOUR DREAMS.  You can WISH all you want but you have to go to WORK.


 I'm working on all of these things by the way.  Writing it all out helps me pinpoint my feelings.  I'm not preaching...unless you take it and run with it-then it's all me. LOL. :)

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Black Flamingo

Did you know that there are black flamingos in the world?  They are extremely rare.  I found this picture a while ago but I just added the text.  I wasn't sure how to caption it, but I found this quote today.

I saw it on Instagram and it applied perfectly to a situation I am currently going through.  Just because someone is mean to you, you don't have to be like them and be mean back. I found it at the perfect time so I could just breathe it out and not get upset.  I won't be like them, I will be nice and unique...like a black flamingo. :)


 

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Foot detoxing

A few weeks ago I went to get a foot massage.  Now, some of those places are not real foot massage places but the one I went to is.  Tip:  If they have a security camera, dark windows and the door is locked then it is NOT a real massage place.  They massage something entirely different. LOL.

I love getting foot massages.  They sit you in a really comfy chair and put your feet in water.  They massage your neck, head and shoulders plus your feet.  It’s awesome and usually a lot cheaper than regular massage parlors.



After my foot massage I was about to pay and I saw a sign about foot detoxing.  I had always wanted to try it so I asked how much it was (about $30) and then decided to do it.  They put your feet in this bath thing and plug in a machine.  I’ve read online that the machine turns a different color because of the salt water and the electric currant but it is the color of the flakes in the water that matter.

Mine turned out SUPER GROSS!  It was all yucky brown and stuff. Nasty.

They have a chart that tells you what the flakes mean.  Brown is detoxing from the liver, tobacco (I don’t smoke) and cellular debris. Plus a little orange from joints. 

Anyway, I don’t know if it is “real” or not, but it was fun and kinda gross. LOL.


Have you ever tried it?

Monday, February 15, 2016

So this happened

A few weeks ago I had my car broken into while eating at Max’s Wine Dive in the Montrose area.  I had parked on the street behind the building because I am too cheap to pay for valet. Haha. :)  Big mistake though because they smashed my back window in because they are assholes.

I walked to my car to find stuff in the driver’s seat and thought it was weird.  It took me a minute to realize that I didn’t leave anything in my seat (never do) so why would it be there?  Then I looked all around my car but didn’t see the smashed window until I walked to the other side (it was dark and my windows are tinted).  My entire window was on the ground.  It had been smashed but the tinting made it stay in one piece when they pulled it out.  They unlocked the front passenger door and rummaged inside.  Everything was out of console and glove box was strewn about the car, making my car look even messier.

My car is usually a mess inside because honestly 1.  I am just a messy person (stuff not trash) and 2.  I travel a lot.  I live on the East side of Houston, I work on the West side of Houston and I am in both the South side and North side of Houston frequently (North side more though).  I am always traveling to babysit for my niece or going out with friends so I leave a lot of stuff in my car because I need it and it isn’t always easy to go home to pick something up.

I know I need to put everything in the trunk but that’s messy too. LOL.  My trunk has my emergency car kit, my 72 hour bag, and a lawn chair.  I really just need to organize it and I am working on it this weekend. 

What did they take?  My (new) gym bag with my $200 running shoes, my favorite sports bra, workout clothes, and some of my favorite jewelry:  TWO pairs of Kendra Scott earrings plus this awesome beaded disco type necklace that I got so many compliments on (see this link for picture).  Sad day. :/

They also took a beautiful purple snake skin type leather bag that I got at a silent auction (I bid on it JUST for the bag) that had some papers and a Beth Moore bible study.  There were some Mary Kay cd’s in there too.  Just to make light of the situation (because you have to in dark days) I said “Well, they are either going to learn about Mary Kay from the cd’s or Jesus from the Bible, either way they are getting something great out of it”.  LOL.  God knows who will pick up that Bible study, either they will or someone else will when they discard of it.  

Luckily my friend who had gone out to eat with me had not driven too far when I got to my car had stayed with me while I called the cops.  The cops never came and couldn’t give an ETA as to when they would be coming so we just cancelled the call after about an hour of waiting.   They didn’t take anything of too much value so I didn’t file a police report.  I didn’t have electronics or anything in there, just some of my favorite things.  While we were waiting for the police we saw another car drive off with its window smashed too.  I guess the losers got multiple cars that night.

The next day I went to get my window fixed.  It cost about $90 plus about $25 for the window tinting.  I got it fixed at Uni Glass which was wonderful to work with!  I highly recommend them.


So moral of the story:  1. Thieves are assholes who need to get real jobs and contribute something to society.  2. I learned to not keep anything in my car.  3.  Don’t go back to Max’s Wine Dive even though it was a good place to eat.  I don’t want to take another chance of something happening because the area isn’t very safe.