My Newest Mom Life Hack: Daily Harvest

I recently gave Daily Harvest a try and I was NOT disappointed. As a busy women and mom, I love anything that makes my life easier, and these my friend should be a staple for anyone looking for just that, especially when it comes to meal time.

They make it almost too easy, if you can say that.  You log into your account, select how many you would like per week or month then make your actual selections (cauliflower rice and pesto is my current favorite).

They arrive via FedEx on the date selected, packaged with dry ice (my 8th grade self would LOVE this as I did my science fair project on dry Ice).  You place them in the freezer until you’re ready to eat then it’s simply microwave for 4 minutes or use the stove top, eat and ENJOY.

I won’t lie.  My first experience I was expecting it to be what you would expect from your “typical” freezer meal and THEY ARE SO MUCH BETTER!  If you didn’t know any better, you would think it was home made right there in your kitchen.

You can get smoothies, harvest bowls, soups, lattes and more!

I have been choosing harvest bowls as I’m not a huge soup person and have a set smoothie recipe that works for me at the moment.  The best part is, that if you don’t eat them in a certain time frame, they are still good as they stay in the freezer.  What?!?!?  Mind blown.

I don’t know how they do it but the flavors go beyond what you would expect from frozen goods and any meal delivery service you can find (trust me, I’ve tried quite a few!)

Don’t take my word for it though, give it a try for yourself.  (But use my code so you get 3 FREE!)

Welcome to MIAMI

Sometimes I feel as though in my head I am the same women now that I was in my 20s but then weeks like this past one come along and I realize just how much I have changed and dare I say it . .  Grown older.

As much as I love New England, the winters just are not my scene.  So I love a good chance to break free of the weighed-down parka in exchange for my now motherly bikini.

It was a week split between what I thought would be my cup of tea to pretty much a cup of tea.

Both hotels touted themselves to be “kid-friendly”, so with my rambunctious toddler in tow, we packed our suitcases and headed for the sunshine state.

The Ritz—Carlton Key Biscayne

Situated on a lovely stretch of sandy beach in a very quiet part of Miami, this hotel on the outside was everything I thought I disliked about a hotel.  Very uppity (aka high-end) and quiet with a view that was seemingly lacking.  I unfortunately did not partake much in our room’s balcony as I was not a fan of watching the comings and goings of cars down the street (aka resort view) but maybe that was my mistake.  I will say that it was clean, the staff all went above and beyond and I thoroughly enjoyed the locations quite nature.  It allowed for me to enjoy time with my son in the pool, on the beach and around the property without feeling like I would lose him easily or annoy the people next to me.  As a parent, it felt safe.  There was no concern for me losing him in a crowd, him being taken or anything like that.  My only concern was how many times I would have to chase after him before he fell and skinned his knee (which happened almost daily).

They do have a kid’s club, called Ritz Kids but unfortunately for me, my little man was a bit too young to partake in the daily adventures or decked out space but maybe next time.

The pool area has plenty of umbrellas and shady bits with an awesome walk in feature for your little ones to be able to wade in and play without fear of going right for the deep end.  They also have a plethora of toys and noodles for kids to play with that are all easily accessible to anyone.  A variety of sunscreen, after sun lotion and aloe vera are also available at the front station along with swim diapers should you need to forget yours.

My favorite part though is that, although I will probably be up at the crack of dawn with my son, I don’t need to rush to the pool area at the time to snag a seat by the pool.

For those without kids, they do have two separate pool areas, one for “adults only” and one Family Pool.

We didn’t venture off property here, but found their hotel restaurants to be just what we needed.

PROS:

  • Quiet nature
  • Friendly staff
  • Family-oriented amenities

 

Loew’s Miami Beach

Welcome to Miami! The hustle and bustle upon entering the front doors to this modern hotel were not the only difference between the two hotels of our trip.  While the wait to get to the check-in counter was long, a bit like Las Vegas, the staff at the start were all extra accommodating.  Upon checking in and finding out our room was already ready (yeah for my napping son), he was presented with a treasure chest of toys to select, from rubber duckies to fuzzy turtles to mini “dump-dumps”.

Like, The Ritz-Carlton, the Loews also has their own kids club, SOBE Kids.  Again, my little man was not old enough to partake in their activities, #wahwah. But I will admit that their club looked especially cool, complete with child-sized lifeguard station to club around on, evading corner with plenty of books and fun cushions to sit on.

Get your game face on when approaching the pool scene here because people get up at the crack of dawn (when the pool opens) to snag seats.  So maybe this is where having kids is a bonus because you are more than likely to be up at the time anyways.  So, you might as well make your way downstairs to secure some seats. Bonus here though is that like The Ritz, they also have a son area for the little ones to be able to walk in and splash around without going right for the deep end.  My little guy was having a blast throwing his rubber sea creature and splashing around.

I loved the modern look and feel of the Loews Miami Beach, especially when it was paired with the close proximity to Lincoln Road for some shopping and great food and drink.

PROS:

  • You have all that Miami Beach has to offer at your fingertips

I would love to know, where has your favorite family vacation been?

 

12 DAYS OF FIT-MAS – FAVORITES TO HAVE UNDER YOUR CHRISTMAS TREE

12 DAYS OF FIT-MAS – FAVORITES TO HAVE UNDER YOUR CHRISTMAS TREE

I LOVE the holidays.  I love everything about it – the lights, the music, the smell of a Christmas tree, and more than all of that, the spirit of giving.  I am a momma and I am always looking for a good recommendation so I thought why not share some of my favorites with all of you.  Now, you will notice that it is heavy on health and fitness and for that I am (not) sorry.

 

I am big on shopping small and on companies that give back so I tried to have as many as I could on my list this year.  I hope you enjoy and maybe find a few new loves for you.  (Please note: They are in no particular order.  I am obsessed with them all equally.)

 

 

ON THE FIRST DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: K-DEER CAPRI IN FLEX

Their signature stripes give back, they have a super flattering, high-waist fit and the designs are so much fun.  They’re good for the ladies in your life, all ages, shapes and sizes.  I may have even purchased a pair for my fairy god-daughter for Christmas . . wink wink.

fullsizerender-221

 

ON THE SECOND DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: THE BE BRAND IN #GIRLBOSS TANK

#mombosses beware!  Their shirts are addicting, super comfy, perfect for a Target run or sweat session and the sayings are fun.

fullsizerender-222

 

ON THE THIRD DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: ALEX AND ANI PRINT OF LOVE CHARM BANGLE

These bracelets are fun, you can stack them and if you haven’t noticed this is the start of my favorites that can be dressed up or down!  As a mom, that is key to my wardrobe – versatility.

fullsizerender-231

 

ON THE FOURTH DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: KLARA KELLY ANCHOR MAKE-A-WISH HEADBAND SCARF

These headbands truly are no slip for my head as they tie in the back, are washable, have great prints and they even have certain prints that give back.

fullsizerender-223

 

ON THE FIFTH DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: FOOT FACIAL (with deluxe foot massage) FROM MINILUXE

They are health conscience, good to their employees and I always leave there feeling relaxed, and ready to tackle whatever may come in my day.

 

 

ON THE SIXTH DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: ATOMI PORTABLE CHARGER

I’ve tried a number of portable chargers and with a small child I never want my phone battery to die!  This one is slim, roughly $20, holds a charge and connects easily to my phone for a quick boost.

fullsizerender-224

 

ON THE SEVENTH DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: LIVING PROOF DRY SHAMPOO

As a mom, can we please talk about the importance of a great dry shampoo.  Since my tiny human became mobile, long showers are a thing of the past.  So this bad boy has been a serious lifesaver for keeping me looking fresh!

fullsizerender-226

 

ON THE EIGHTH DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: BLACK CRANE AND LION WRAP SWEATER

As a momma, a good wrap sweater is a necessity.  You can dress it up with jeans and heals or down with leggings and sneakers.  Plus, this one was the perfect cover for me while breastfeeding.

fullsizerender-233

 

ON THE NINTH DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: HAMILTON BEACH SLOW COOKER (CROCKPOT)

What can I say?!  Whether you’re a mom or not, my crockpot is a lifesaver.  Create a delicious, home cooked meal in only a fraction of the time by simply throwing in all your ingredients, set it and forget it.

fullsizerender-228

 

ON THE TENTH DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: HIGH COLLAR VEST BY CALIA

I am a sucker for a good vest.  Ask my husband, I have about 5 or 6 vests but this one is my go-to.  I wear it ALL the time.  It’s comfortable, classic design and can be matched well with virtually anything you wear.

fullsizerender-225

 

ON THE ELEVENTH DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: AMAZON ECHO

Running around the house with my tiny human means I am always looking for awesomeness that makes mommin more fun (didn’t think that was possible) and easier.  This fun toy fits that bill!  There are so many features that I uncover virtually daily but what I use it for most is checking the weather before bundling up my little guy to head out, adding items I may or may not have run out of to my shopping list and cranking some tunes.  All done hands-free!

fullsizerender-229

 

ON THE TWELFTH DAY OF FITMAS MY SWOLEMATE GAVE TO ME: EIGHT OPTICS SUNGLASSES IN VALENTINA

Every women needs a great pair of shades that make you feel sassy and sexy and look great no matter what you’re wearing.  Well, that is these sunglasses.  They come in a variety of colors which are certain to add a bit of sass to your next selfie.

fullsizerender-232

 

So close to making the list:

Traveling #MomBod – Tips and Tricks for Fitness On the Go

There was a time when travelling – anywhere – meant I would fall off the wagon.  It didn’t matter if I was heading back home by car, flying to my sister’s for a weekend of shenanigans or heading somewhere tropical for a getaway with my husband.  It was always the same – unhealthy snacks or airport food and the idea that I would pack my workout gear “just in case”.  That “just in case” never happened as they always came back home just as clean as when they left.  What I have learned since beginning my #mombod journey is that I don’t have to be perfect, I just have to keep moving forward.

What does this mean?

  • I have figured out what foods (or snacks) to pack in my carry-on
  • I have planned ahead and packed a healthy meal option in case one doesn’t exist for my breakfast or lunch at my destination
  • I have figured out what workouts can be done on-the-go
  • I have learned to make a plan for myself ahead of my travels so I’m not winging-it while away
  • I have learned if I do miss a workout that it’s not the end of the world, it’s not the end of my “diet” that I am creating a healthy lifestyle for myself and that perfection is not a requirement

 

What are my favorite / go-to flight snacks?

  • Banana / grapes / apple / orange – I’m not always great at getting my portion of fruits in on a normal day but these are great to travel with. I like to put them pre-packed in the fridge, ready to grab and go whenever your flight is.
  • Carrots with hummus – Snag yourself a couple of those pre-portioned hummus packs and some carrots. I also happen to enjoy sliced zucchini with hummus.
  • Pre-portioned nuts – almonds, cashews, pistachios, walnuts (all natural – i.e. – unsalted, not chocolate covered, etc.)
  • Single-serve string cheese

 

What are my go-to workouts?

  • With Beachbody On Demand, you can workout anywhere you can bring your iPhone – with or without Wi-Fi
  • Prior to leaving on my trip, I will make a game plan for what workouts I might like to do and I will make sure to download 5/6 of the workouts on the BOD app on my iPhone. This way if I have no access to Wi-Fi I am still covered.
  • I am currently doing Insanity Max: 30, which makes it easy for me to pre-plan as I will simply download the next 5/6 workouts on my calendar. With this fitness program, you don’t need weights or any other equipment it uses your bodyweight with cardio
  • Other go-to programs: 21 Day Fix Extreme – Pilates Fix Extreme uses a band which travels very easily; CIZE – who doesn’t love a good dance session, also without any fitness equipment.
  • With any of these programs, you need very little space, about your heights worth of floor space and you are good to go!

 

My other travel notes:

  • I like to have a look at potential meal / menu options. If we’re heading out to dinner at certain places, then I’ll have a look over the menu ahead of time and plan out what I will eat.  This way I don’t feel rushed when it comes time to order and end up picking something spur-of-the-moment that I’ll regret later.
  • I pack enough Shakeology single-serve packets for at least one a day, sometimes I plan for two, again just in case. I’ll typically have one for breakfast every day with some fruit so that I know that I am at the very least starting the day off with a serious dose of nutrition in my belly.  On vacation I will mix it with ice and water or with my recent travels to the UK, coffee!  No need for a blender or anything but my Shakeology cup.
  • In the last 10 months, I plan my days based on my son’s naps / nap schedule. His naps typically last an hour and a half – but you never know.  When we recently travelled to the UK, some days they were only 40 minutes, hence why I like to plan ahead.  This way I can make the most of my “free time”.  During nap #1 (aka his morning nap), I will use this time to get my 30-minute workout in and hopefully a shower.  This way I get my workout out of the way early, start my day with a boost of energy and can enjoy whatever comes our way!
  • If you want to stay on track I say have a plan. For me, I don’t plan to get up at a certain time in the morning as my son’s sleep can be unpredictable and for me getting enough sleep is important.  So, I plan my workouts around naps instead.  Whatever you do, make it a priority.
  • Do NOT get down on yourself if you miss a workout. That doesn’t constitute the end of your journey.  As long as you are moving forward that’s all that matters.

 

I’m not perfect and I won’t lie and tell you that I workout every single day and I eat healthy 100% of the time.  I enjoy a glass of wine just as much as the next gal.  I have simply learned that if I miss a workout or enjoy that glass of wine I am not derailing all of my efforts and remind myself this is a journey I am on.  I focus on eating healthy at least 80% of the time.  There will be bumps in the road.  It is how you move forward that matters.

I am always working to become better, stronger, healthier.  I am always working on being an amazing role model for my son.  I am always working on being a better wife to my husband.

Don’t be afraid of traveling.  Make a plan.  And remember that no matter what happens your journey to being healthier continues.

 

 

No Gym, No Time – No Problem

The Summer has me doing a fair amount of traveling – some in the country, some out of the country – by plane, train and automobile!  This would typically be where I would “fall off the wagon”.  I would give up by telling myself it’s only for a few days or a week but it becomes so much harder to get yourself back on track after a hiatus of any length of time.  And more often than not, I wouldn’t get back on track.

Thankfully that won’t be happening this time!  I’ll have my iPhone and iPad with me and BOD (Beachbody on Demand) so all I need is this device, wifi and a small amount of floor space.  No wifi? No problem.  You  can even download up to 5 workouts on BOD just in case.  Then all you need is your device!

With BOD, you have access to hundreds of workouts, their workout and nutrition guides, faqs and more.  For me, it means I can go anywhere and not worry about missing a workout or needing to find a gym.  Is your husband watching the US Open? No problem.  I can take my iPad to another room and crush my workout.  Hopping a flight to the UK? No problem.  I’ve downloaded the workouts I want that don’t need weights or any additional equipment just my bodyweight and I’ll be taking my laptop so all I’ll need is some space in the hotel room.   Warm weather is here and you want to take your workout to the park?  No problem.  Bring your phone, iPad or laptop and stream your workout while soaking up some rays.

What I love about BOD –

  • You get 24/7 access to hundreds of workouts from anywhere you can access wifi
  • There are literally hundreds of workouts so you never get bored
  • You can download up to 5 workouts to your dashboard to play anytime you don’t have access to wifi
  • Any fitness program you purchase is almost automatically added to your dashboard to begin playing whenever you are ready, so you don’t have to wait for your package to arrive in the mail
  • When you sign up, you get your first 30 days FREE then it’s only $38.87/quarter
  • As a Beachbody Club member, you will receive 10% off ALL Beachbody products you purchase
  • I can workout ANYWHERE – in my living room, kitchen, on my patio or hotel room

It’s so easy, all you have to do is PUSH PLAY.

Find out more here!

all the space you need-2