Looking for a quick, easy and healthy snack? Look no further! These simple, no-bake Bliss Balls will satisfy any sweet-tooth cravings and make a positive contribution to your health! They are jammed packed with flaxseed, which is a good source of fiber and omega-3 fatty acids, as well as old fashioned oats, another wonderful source of fiber and are said to reduce the risk of heart disease. 

WHAT YOU NEED:

Old-Fashioned Oats

Peanut Butter (I used crunchy because I can’t get enough of it)

Chocolate Chips (Mine were organic dark chocolate chips – it don’t matter)

Coconut (Roasted or Not)

Flaxseed (Ground or Not)

Honey (Raw)

Vanilla Extract

WHAT TO DO: (SUPER DIFFICULT…NOT)

Mix it all together (I used the spoon for about 12 seconds then starting mixing with my hands). Roll into tiny little balls. Place in fridge for 10-15 seconds. EAT :)

find a cute bowl. 

find a spoon.

gather ingredients. 

put them in the cute bowl and mix together.

roll into balls. refrigerate.

 

love them. 

 

LET ME KNOW HOW YOURS TURN OUT AND IF YOU DECIDE TO SWAP SOME INGREDIENTS! :)

<- Follow along on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest!

 

 

Back To The Basics: Yoga For Beginners

    “Practice and all is coming.”

It can be overwhelming and intimidating walking into a Yoga studio…but it doesn’t have to be. Everyone’s body is beautifully unique and Yoga shines a wonderful light on these colorful differences. We all have a diverse range of movement and Yoga allows us to explore our muscles, tissues and ligaments in a fascinating way. Yoga can ignite a captivating light in your soul and lead you down a path of serenity and simplicity. Here are a few Postures/Poses (Asanas) that will get you started before you head on in to a Yoga studio for your first class. These Postures/Poses will have you feeling a little more confident!

SAVASANA – CORPS POSE

Laying on the back, flatten the shoulders onto the ground, relax as you melt the body into the Earth. Try squeezing all the muscles and then allow them to release if you are unable to relax. Tune into the breath, breathing in through the nose, expand the belly up into the chest and heart. Exhale, allow the breath to release through the nose, gently feeling the chest sink and then the belly. Allow for the mind to quiet as you bring all focus and attention toward the breath. 

SUKASANA – EASY POSE

Seated on the mat, root into the ground and feel the connection to the Earth through each space of the body that touches the ground. At the same time lengthen up through the spine, feeling taller. Shoulders relax away from the ears, Chin is parallel to the ground, reach up through the crown of the head. To modify, prop blankets under the knees, if any knee pain occurs or sit against the wall to support the spine. 

BALASANA – CHILD’S POSE

Sink the hips back to the heels, allow the bum to gently rest over the feet, forehead rests easily on the Earth. Knees can be together or apart, (whichever feels better TODAY for you) arms can be extended in front of the body on the mat or down the sides of the body, palms facing up. 

Benefits: Calms the mind, stretches the thighs, hips and ankles, can relieve back pain.

ADHO MUKHA SVANASANA – DOWNWARD FACING DOG 

Starting on all fours in table top, spread the fingers wide, tuck the toes and press the hips up and back. Lengthen through the spine, reach the sitz bones up toward the sky as you lengthen down the legs and gently press the heels toward the ground. Bend into the knees if the sensation in the back of the legs is too intense.

Benefits: Energizes the body/fights fatigue, strengthens the arms and legs, stretches the calves, hamstrings, spine and shoulders, beneficial for those suffering from asthma, high blood pressure and sciatica. 

 MARJARYASANA/BITILASANA – CAT/COW

Begin on all fours, wrists directly stacked under shoulders, knees under hips to form a miniature table with the body. Spread fingers wide. Inhale as you reach the bellybutton down toward the mat, gaze, tailbone and heart reach up to the sky, keep shoulders relaxed and drawn together. Exhale, pull the bellybutton in toward the spine, round through the back, tuck the tailbone, head hangs heavy, keep arms straight. 

Benefits: Stretches the neck and spine, massages organs in belly.

 TADASANA – MOUNTAIN POSE

Stand at the top of the mat. Feet press deep into the Earth, feeling anchored to ignite power up into the legs, spread the toes and press through all four corners of the feet. Lengthen the tailbone down toward the Earth, gently draw the lower belly in (stay away for “sucking-in”) and lengthen up through the spine, back of the neck stays long, arms reach down by the sides. Feel as though the feet are growing roots like a tree, deep into the ground and that there is a string attached to the crown of the head, pulling you upward. This posture seems simple, but if done correctly it can turn into an intense workout in no time. 

Benefits: Strengthens legs, firms up belly, improves posture overall.

VIRABHADRASANA I – WARRIOR I

Stand at the top of mat, hands on hips. Press the feet into the Earth, lengthen through the spine, step the right leg to the back of the mat. Left knee bends, right leg is lengthened, plant the right heel into the Earth, press in to the pink-toe edge of the right foot. Hips are as square as possible (press right hip forward, tuck left hip back). If hips are opening up try stepping the right leg out, widening the stance. This offers more space for the hips to point forward, like headlights. Keep the spine lengthened, drop the tailbone down toward the Earth. Option to bring the arms to heart center. Left knee stays over the toes. Repeat on left side.

(left side shown in pictures)

Benefits: Stretches the belly, psoas, hips, thighs, calves and ankles. Strengthens the back, arms and legs. 

VIRABHADRASANA II – WARRIOR II

Stand at the top of mat, hands on hips. Press feet into the Earth, lengthen through the spine, step the right leg to the back of the mat. Move the right foot to become parallel with the back of the mat and press into the pinky-toe edge of the right foot, left leg is bent. Body is open toward the right side of the room, option to extend arms out to the sides, finger tips are energized. Shoulders are stacked over hips. Gaze over the left middle finger, Left knee stays over the toes.

 

(left side shown in picture)

Benefits: Strengthens the legs and ankles, opens up the chest and shoulders and stimulates the abdominal organs.

ARDHA MATSYENDRASANA – HALF LORD OF THE FISHES POSE

Seated on the mat with legs extended front, bend the right knee and cross the right leg over the left. This may feel like enough of a stretch, but if not bend the left leg in toward the body. Inhale find length through the spine, exhale twist toward the right inner thigh, option to hook the left elbow onto the right knee. With each inhale find length, with each exhale relax shoulders, feel the twist in the spine (possibly twisting deeper). Inhale to unravel the twist back to neutral, naval moves first then heart and gaze. Repeat on other side. (Picture shows left side first, but be sure to start with the right as noted above. Twisting to the right first then to the left promotes digestion)

Benefits: Stretches the shoulders, neck and hips. Helps with digestion (twist toward the right first). Stimulates the liver and kidneys. 

Pants – Teeki

Sports Bra – Lulu

Long Sleeve “Dream” Top – Spiritual Gangster (Available at Pura Vida Yoga DIeppe)

 

 

Two-Piece Talk!

Two-Piece sets are my new found glory. These two are bright and bold (especially with a tan) and I can’t get enough. I love that you can mix and match once you feel you have exhausted the matchy-matchy vibe. Saboskirt is where I ordered these two beautiful pieces and they will not be my last two-piece set purchase, that’s for sure! They are comfortable AND affordable (who would have thought?), the wait time on shipping was not long at all considering they came all the way from Australia and their stock is constantly being updated! My Peach V Set top was a little snug, so I got my seamstress (whom my mother-in-law hooked me up with – she’s amazing) to add some white material to the sides! I LOVED the way it turned out. The Tropicana Palm Set is sold out, but click here for something similar ;). Be sure to check out the Size Chart they have available on their website. Click ANY highlighted words to guide you right to the site where you can purchase some of these beautiful additions to your closet!

The Peach V Set

Mala Beads – Luminous and Wild (Rachel Barrett)

Watch – Michael Kors – Shop Nordstrom to find your perfect style watch

Rings – Aldo – Find something similar here

Shoes – Aldo (older) – Find something similar here

Nail Polish – Fiji by Essie

Tropicana Palm Set

Necklace – Aldo

Shoes – Spring (older) – Find something similar here

Clutch – Aldo

Nail Polish – Mod About You by OPI

Hashtag #hhff ;) Enjoy your day!

P.S. Unfortunately these Two-Piece Sets are no longer available as of today, but check out the Saboskirt Website to find your favorite piece!

Salt In The Air, Sand In My Hair

Well…I’m back. I’m actually staring out my window at a light snow-fall contributing to our 50 feet of snow that’s already on the ground (OK. I’m exaggerating). Usually when I choose to plan my vacation in the middle of Winter, coming back to snow makes me feel overwhelmed and frustrated. This time…not so much. Yes, Monday was extra hard, but after my morning practice, things gently put themselves back in order. I am surprised. Yet, I’m not really surprised. Post vacation blues always hits me, but not this time. “Back to reality” wasn’t even close to painful, because…well… my reality is good. I missed my family. I missed my “job” (if you want to call it that). I saw things in a different light and appreciated my own bed more than ever. My little brother moves soon (only 2 /1/2 hours away BUT still) which also started to sink in as I arrived back in Moncton. I’m appreciating, more than ever before, the fact that us East Coasters see each season flourish. I wish I could have the ocean always, but home really is home. I AM counting down the days until Spring, but I’m also livin’ while I’m countin’. It ain’t so bad…

That was my moment of appreciation for the day and now for my trip! It was incredible. A little “chilly” (haha…yes you probably want to slap me right about now) when we first arrived, but the sun beamed down for the rest of the week. Breakfast beside the ocean was breathtaking, the fresh guacamole was to die for (Brit, Vanessa and I ate it everyday), a wonderful date night that included a sunset dinner downtown Cancun was much needed, visitors (Rachel… the other half of my heart and Mike…he’s alright too), a wonderful massage on the beach and just pure relaxation. Long talks with my closest friends helped for a little re-connect and I couldn’t be happier to have spent my week in Mexico. Not even a year ago I was living there and I still can’t get over how lucky I am. In all aspects. Maybe heading Down South wasn’t in your cards this year, but go outside, feel the air and the sun (when it’s out) and let it all sink in. It’s not where you are or what you have, but who your time is spent with and your perspective. If you don’t like where you are, you’re not a tree… move (I mean this in the nicest, most gentle way possible haha).

This chaotic world won’t ever slow down, so why don’t you?

 

loungin’ on the patio

our view.

 

our view at breakfast.

sass sometimes.

We had visitors and I was beyond happy :D

we tried.

our sunset dinner, downtown Cancun.

our room was light and bright (my fav :) )

my best.

Brit, Vanessa and I at Coco Bongo.

him and I, everyday. #nailchip

handsome.

coconut drinks and this book (a light read that made me smile daily)

my best.

Our whole gang!

these babies snappin’ selfies

I want in.

massage on the beach.

selfies after supper

coco bongo

always lol’ing when he’s around.

upside down in the sand

Nic breathing into the sand

 

Date Night On A Dime

Date nights don’t have to put such a damper on the funds. It’s not about the money spent, but the memories made. The time of the $200 night-out has been replaced, people; the day of the cheap and chic date night…is in. Scan through these for some fun and money-saving ideas!

1. Go For A Hike – Enjoy nature and get moving!

2. 20 Questions – Find out even more about your other half by each writing down a list of 20 questions for one another!

3. Bowling – Make it interesting and place a bet on who buys the cheap beer you’ll be guzzling down.

4. Spa Night – Facials, Pedicures and Manicures, Massages and Foot Soaks. Relax together.

5. Test Drive Cars – Go for a spin at a car dealership in a car you both wanna try out.

6. Hide and Seek – Nuff’ said.

7. Trilogy Movie Night – Pick a Trilogy that you both love (ie. Austin Powers, The Hangover, Home Alone) and make a night of it.

8. Flee Market/Garage Sales – Go hunting for “stuff” – who knows what you’ll come across.

9. Sledding – Grab your crazy carpets and bundle up.

10. Drive-In – Skip the movie theater, hit up your local supermarket and cuddle up in your car.

11. Youtube Video Marathon – Be careful…these can really suck you in…for hours…

12. Fire&S’mores – Get warm and cozy :)

13. Visit Your Local Parks – Talk a walk through your local parks, get outside!

14. Board Game Night – Set up multiple stations of board games and move from one to another!

15. Backyard Camp-Out – Pitch a tent in the backyard, order some take-out and unplug for the night.

16. Mini-Golf – Put your skills to the test!

17. Bingo! – Head to the nearest Bingo Hall and try your best at the win!

18. Geo-Caching – Don’t know what it is? Google it then download an App.

19. Time-Capsule – Pick a few items that have a memory attached to them and maybe write each other a small note on 5 reasons why you love your other half. Bury it. Dig it up in a year.

20. Local Pub/Bar – Yes it’s nice to experience fine-dinning, but not all the time. Hit up your local pub or bar, grab some wings and beer and enjoy the simplicity.

 

 

10 Down South Essentials

It’s that time of the year… where us east coasters experience copious amounts of snow and hibernate inside with hot chocolate (or wine) by the fire. I LOVE winter, but after getting more than four feet of snow over the past three weeks I am ready for my vacation…which starts today!! :) I fly to Cancun late afternoon and I figured I would share some of my Down South Essentials that I just can’t leave without. Before we start… MAKE A LIST. It allows you to cross things off that you don’t really need (aka. NOT essential to your trip) and reminds you of small, essential things you NEED (ie. toothbrush and gum for the airplane).

1. Cheap Sunnies

Don’t bother packing your expensive sunglasses because once the drinks start flowing they will be lost at sea! Grab a cheap pair (or two! – Aldo always has 2 for $20) so you won’t be devastated when you realize your $200 dollar sunnies are gone forever!

2.Sunscreen

Ya…we all want a bomb diggity tan, but the sun is STRONG and even stronger down south. Lather up… you will still arrive home with that glow, scratch the redness.

3. A Good Book

Get real. Nothing is better than a good page-turner and the sound of the waves.

4. Bright Bikini

The brighter the bikini, the more your sun-kissed skin glows.

5.Coconut Oil

With hot sun comes dehydrated skin. After long hours in the heat its always good to have a moisturizer at hand when you get to your hotel room at night. Show your skin some love. My first choice is always coconut oil, but anything will do!

6. Sandals

Obviously your winter boots won’t be needed in the sand. Get some cute flip flops that can be easily slipped on and off throughout the day!

7. Beach Bag

Nothing like getting down to the beach and not having anywhere to put all of your “stuff” (sunscreen, sunnies, phone, book, beach cover-up). Any bright colored bag will do ;)

8. High-Waisted Shorts

Maybe not an essential for everyone, but in my books – a must have. They’re comfy and can make your day-time outfit look a little more chic and put together. Make your crop top look even cuter!

9. Hat

Some girls love a big floppy hat, but I’m more into the baseball cap myself. It can be flipped backwards when you wanna give your face a little sunshine and be swung back around to cover up to take a break!

10. Beach Cover-Up

I bought a small little cover up for $6.95 at H&M. This way when you need to head inside to grab a snack you’re not stuck putting on multiple layers! Think light!

The sun is calling my name! I need that Vitamin D – enjoy your week ;)

Lots of Love

 

4 For The Booty

Booty Building takes time, butt (hehe) if you stay consistent it can pay off. These exercises not only tone your bootay, but engage your core. Here are 4 For The Booty that I love with tips on good alignment and endurance. Enjoy!

1. Single Leg Lift Start on all fours in table top. Flex the right foot, bring the knee up to approx. a 90 degree angle without moving the torso.

From this position, keeping the knee bent, lift the knee up toward the sky and back down to a 90 degree angle. 30 reps 3x each side.

TIPS: When starting in table top, knees should be directly under hips, wrists under shoulders. Spread the fingers wide and keep the heart reaching forward as you gently draw the bellybutton into the spine. Hips stay square to the floor.

2.Bridge Laying on the back, walk the knees in toward the bum so the heels are directly under the knees. Start tucking the tailbone as you gently lift it off the floor and peel each vertebrae off the ground separately to reach toward the sky. Lowering back down to the earth, setting each vertebrae down separately, tailbone touches the ground last. Repeat 30 reps 3x.

TIP: Keep squeezing the inner thighs together as if there was a block being held between them. Keep those heels under the knees!

VARIATION 2 Bridge 

If you feel comfortable and strong in bridge try extending one leg out (flex the foot, keep the inner thighs squeezing) and from here pulsing the pelvis up toward the sky. (VERY small movement)

3. Fire Hydrant Start on all fours in table top (Remember alignment tips!). Right foot flexed, knee bends directly out to side. Keeping the heart reaching forward, back of the neck long. 30 reps 3x each side.

4. The Cougar (From The Booty Barre Workout)

Begin in a squat, lengthen from the base of the spine to the crown of the head, palms can be gently resting on the ground or they can be at a hover. Pulsing the butt up and down (staying in a squat) 16 reps 3x.

 

Endurance Tip: Find your breath. I cannot stress enough how important it is to breathe while exercising. Find smooth, long, deep breaths in and out through the nose. This will help you to stay focused on the task at hand and even heat up the body.

 

Stretching: Pigeon pose is wonderful to stretch out the glutes if you’re feeling tight or overwhelmed. Start on all fours. Reach your right knee toward your right wrist, slide the left leg long to the back. Stay upright or recline over the legs into sleeping pigeon. If this is too intense grab a block or blanket and place it under your right butt cheek to lift you away from the earth. Still too intense? Recline onto the back. Bend both knees, soles of the feet come to the ground. Flex the right foot and place your right ankle over your left thigh. Gently draw the left thigh in toward the chest. Don’t forget to do BOTH SIDES!:)

 

{Leggings: Teeki, Sports Bra: Lululemon, Mug: Chapters, Nails: Bordeaux by Essie}

Thanks for stopping by! :)

 

 

Mint For Your Muscles

Sore muscles? Instead of grabbing for the A535, explore a more natural way of healing. Using peppermint essential oil has many benefits, (aside from the bomb-diggity smell) including its ability to soothe sore and tight muscles. As we become more and more busy we often  don’t notice spaces in our bodies that start to become rigid and hard from stress and chaos. Dab a little bit of peppermint oil on sore muscles and within minutes you’ll feel the relaxing  affects.  Although essential oils are great, its defiantly important to remember to test out the oil on your skin to make sure you have no allergy to the oil or sensitivity. If your skin is sensitive in any way it works wonders to dilute the oil by mixing it with water or olive or vegetable oil. The smell of peppermint is awakening in times of fatigue and it not only soothes those tight muscles, but you can put a drop of it in your tea, (it’ll aid in digestion), rub a very small amount on your temples, near your sinuses, on your forehead or on the back of your head (STAY AWAY from your eyes or tears will flow) to ease headaches, inhale it or rub a tiny amount on your belly for any cramping or minor stomach pain. Seriously … take advantage. You’ll love the effects of reaching for oils more frequently versus all that other stuff in the cupboard that list ingredients you can’t even pronounce. ENJOY ;)

D.I.Y. Dry Erase Board!

This cost me a total of $15 and it looks crisp and clean!

What You Need:

1 8×10 inch White Picture Frame (the one I used is from Walmart for $11!)

1 Pair of Scissors

1 Dry-Erase Marker (I got 4 for $2 from the dollar store)

1 Piece of Craft Paper (99 cents at Michaels – pick whatever design you like)

What To Do:

Remove piece of paper within the glass that the picture frame comes with, match it up to your piece of craft paper, cut it out, replace the old with the new and voila! Use it for cute notes or “To Do” lists! Enjoy :)

ps. This took only 5 minutes!

 

 

Creamy one-piece

I picked up this snazZy jumper at H&M for…wait for it…$19.99! Yes – real life. The ONE day I walk into the mall vowing to myself I would not make a purchase…this whimsical one piece calls my name. I couldn’t pass it up and ended up buying it in not only cream, but black too (hehe). Class and comfort in one.

Tip: When buying a Onesie/Jumper I usually opt for a tight fit around the waist, that way the over-sized fit doesn’t look too overwhelming.

Remember – H&M is da bomb, BUT you can get carried away with all the low price tags…then when you get to the cash you’ve ended up spending over $200. Give yourself a controlled budget before you browse and you won’t have any buyers remorse!

| Jumper: H&M, Shoes: Aldo, Clutch: Aldo, Watch: Michael Kors, Earrings: Aldo (set of 6 for $12) |