Thursday, December 29, 2011

Beauty Resolutions for 2012

Hi everyone!  I hope you're enjoying the last few days of 2011 - I definitely am :)  In the meantime, I've been crossing off things on my to do list, looking for a full time job and trying to enjoy my free time as best I can!  Looking for a job is definitely a little stressful, but I'm just taking the opportunity to enjoy my free time - once I find one, I'll never have free time like this again! 

Now, I'm not one to have crazy resolutions for the new year - I'm more of a vision board, meditation/prayer, affirmation girl :)  I'll be making my vision board soon and posting it -along with my old one, but if you're interested in making one before then check out the link I've posted.  In the simplest terms, a vision board is a visual collection of all the things you want for your life - the idea behind it is that if you send it out to the Universe (or God, Allah, Yahweh, Jesus - you can define your particular belief system here), life will give it to you.  Your job for your life is to expect good things.  If you've ever read Sonia Choquette's books - they are truly incredible, you can learn more about meditation/prayer - I love how her books include the Catholic faith, as I'm Catholic, but also dive deeper into a more spiritual sense of working with angels and guides.  Anyway, moving onto less deep topics.... 

One of the beauty blogs I love, The Beauty Department, recently posted this list of "beauty resolutions" for 2012.  The Beauty Department is run by Lauren Conrad (love her!), Amy Nadine and Kristin Hess.  They have awesome tutorials including everything from the basics of how to curl your hair to complicated braiding - which is completely perfect for me since my hair knowledge is limited to curling and straightening... Anyway, I thought this was a really cute idea, so, here are my beauty resolutions for 2012!

1. I will drink more water.

2. I will always take my makeup off before I go to bed, I will keep makeover remover clothes for when I don't feel like it.

3.  I will not compare myself to others.  My hair will always be dark and my eyes will always be blue - but that's what makes me who I am and why would I want to change that?

4. I will get 8 hours of sleep per night, I would say 7 but I know that doesn't work so well for me.

5. I will start using lip balm with shea butter to get my chapped lips under control.

6. I will stop picking at my cuticles.

7.  I will continue to nourish my body with good foods - whole grains, fruits/veggies, protein and occasionally dark chocolate :) 

8. I will take off my nail polish when it starts to chip and I will NOT pick it off my nails.

9. I will wear sunscreen/use moisturizer with sunscreen even when it's cloudy.

10. I will not complain about my body or any particular part - instead, I will admire it for it's strength and the fact that it is healthy - and no, my life would not be better if I was taller, shorter, thinner, fatter, my feet were smaller/bigger and yours won't be either.  Everyone is beautiful just the way they are today.

11. I will always always always use heat protectant spray when I straighten my hair or use my curling iron - I love this one and it's super cheap.

12. I will smile when I don't feel like it and thank God for all the things in my life I am grateful for.

13. If I want a tan, I will only fake tan, but even better I will embrace my paleness.

14. I will use L'oreal's lash treatment for bigger eyelashes :)  It really does work.

15. I will throw out my mascara every 3 months.

16. I will keep my nails short and painted 75% of the time.

17. I will embrace drugstore makeup - I am learning that a lot of it rocks!

18. I will stop buying shoes that are too small just because they are cute and out of my normal size.

19. I will donate clothes that don't fit me or that I will never wear again.

20. I will clean my makeup brushes every 2 weeks, this should be every week, but I know that won't happen!

21. I will only use the makeup brushes I love (mostly because I'll have less to clean!) which would be the set I have from Too Faced that I have had for 7 years - this set is very very similar.

22. I will find a foundation that I love. I hope.

23. I will use my dry brush more often - 3x a week at least!

24. I will start using coconut oil as a moisturizer.

25. I will use my Clarisonic at least once if not twice everyday even when I don't feel like it because I know that it really does make my skin look prettier :)

26. I will always see the beauty in other people and I will tell them they are beautiful.

27. I will banish any negative beauty talk from my mind - I will learn to love all my "flaws"

28. I will embrace my own style and expand it :)

29. I will continue to go to pilates - so great for my mind and body :)

30. I will get my hair trimmed every 6-8 weeks because I know if I don't it will start to look ratty.

31. I will learn how to do the messy bun... if you know how please send a tutorial my way.

32. Laugh every single day :) Spend time with people who make me laugh :)

What are your beauty resolutions for 2012?

Monday, December 26, 2011

Cake Batter Detox

Hello there!!  I hope everyone had/is having a wonderful holiday.  My Christmas was amazing and I'm so grateful that I was able to spend it with the people I love.

That being said, now it's time to get back to my normal schedule of healthy eats - a so called detox if you will.  I will be the first to admit that when you start eating not so healthy food, the healthy food you love starts to sound less appetizing.  Cookies are usually an every few months thing for me and lately they have turned into a few a day thing - not so good.  Today, I'm going cookie free.. but unfortunately, I can't quite squash that cookie craving.  So I created this smoothie to pump some good things into my body - fruit, omega 3's, calcium - while giving into my sweetness craving.  The sprinkles were just cute, don't judge. 

While I don't believe in detox diets - your liver and kidneys are pretty efficient - I do believe that significantly cleaning up your diet improves your health.  Plus, you would be amazed at how much better you will feel after a week.  It's important though to take baby steps in the direction of good health so that the changes are maintainable.  You don't need to go to extremes - in fact, going to extremes can do more damage than good.  Have you ever heard the horror stories of detox diets? 

My "detox" will be cutting out excess sugar, eating more fish, drinking more green tea and eating at least 5+ servings of fruits and vegetables per day.  Your "detox" could include eliminating fast food and trying to eat 2-3 servings of vegetables per day if you're at 0... or it could be eliminating pop (yes, I am saying ALL pop and that includes diet - you wouldn't fill your cars gas tank with water would you?)  Now that the holidays are over, we can all make better choices for our health.  For more help, see this post :)

Now, onto the smoothie! Mmmmmm.

Cake Batter Smoothie


1 frozen banana
1 cup soy milk
1 tbsp cashew butter or this
2 tbsp ground flaxseed
1/4 tsp xantham gum
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp sprinkles of your choice

1. Combine ingredients and blend on high until smooth.
2. Toss in sprinkles :)
3. Top with a few more sprinkles and if you are feeling daring fat-free whipped cream or tru-whip.

I love the sprinkles... sooo cute :)

Have you ever tried a detox diet?

Friday, December 23, 2011

Cookies Galore

Happy Friday!!!  It's almost Christmas Eve, can you believe it?  In the spirit of Christmas, I've been enjoying one too many Christmas cookies.  However, it is the season and as long as I'm still going to the gym 6 days a week and eating at least 5 servings of fruits/veggies each week, I'm not going to worry about it.... That being said I did want a healthier cookie recipe, so I got creative in the kitchen and changed around the classic tollhouse recipe.  I reduced the sugar, reduced the flour and swapped out flaxseed.

Personally, I think these could be even better if you subbed dark chocolate for the M&M's and added shredded coconut, walnuts and raisins.  Since I was taking them to a party though, I thought people might get freaked out by flaxseed so I played it kind of safe by throwing in M&M's.

So, the big question, how did they turn out?  I thought they were awesome!!  I love the taste of flaxseed so in my opinion they ruled.  Next time, I'm going to add mashed banana or applesauce for some of the butter and see how that goes.... so look for an update asap in the future.

Flaxseed Cookies


1 3/4 cup gluten-free all purpose flour
1/2 tsp xanthan gum
1 stick Earth Balance
1/2 cup ground flax seed
2 tbsp flaxseed + 3tbsp hot water (flax egg)
1 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp vanilla
1 cup M & M's

1. Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees.  Line 2 baking sheets with parchment paper. Cream together butter, vanilla and sugar in a stand mixer.  Add flax egg and leave on low - level 2 if you are using a kitchenaid.
2. In a small bowl, mix together flour, ground flaxseed, baking soda, salt and xanthan gum.
3. Gradually add flour mixture to butter mixture until combined.
4. Stir in M&M's using a spatula.
5. Next, use a tablespoon to place batter onto cookie sheets.  Bake for about 10-11 minutes - the cookies will harden when sitting, so allow them to cool for a few moments before removing them from the cookie sheet. Feast away!

*If you aren't using parchment paper, I would reduce the time to 350 and cook your cookies a little longer :)