First Time Mom and Losing It

Friday, December 19, 2014

The Yummiest Most Natural Way To Gain Energy + Giveaway

**I received a four free Chia Energy Beverages for my review. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be a good fit for my readers. All opinions are 100% my own.


I jumped on the Chia Seed bandwagon about a year ago because of all the health benefits. These little seeds are packed with Omega-3s, fiber, protein and antioxidants. I love that when they are put in liquids they plump up and can make amazing overnight oatmeal and some delicious pudding. They can also be sprinkled on top of foods for a nutty texture or put into smoothies.

When I think of chia seeds I think of Mamma Chia which is a conscious and sustainable company that wants to share the magic of chia seeds. They offer products made with chia seeds like their vitality beverages and chia squeeze in many delicious flavors.

Now Mamma Chia has branched out and created an Organic Energy Beverage. It combines the nutrition of chia seeds, the clean evergy of guayusa and the delicious taste of fruit juices. Guayusa has a unique balance of caffeine, antioxidants and vitamins while delivering energy without the jitters that coffee, soda or other energy beverages can give.


The Organic Energy Beverages comes in:
  • Blackberry Blast
  • Cherry Charge
  • Grape Power
  • Raspberry Razz
Aside from the super cool names they all tasted delicious! I drank them in the morning and noticed myself having an extra little pep in my step. I got back on my exercise groove this week and the Mamma Chia Energy Beverages really did give me that extra boost of energy to get my exercise equipment out everyday. Five days straight of exercise done so far! 


You can find the Mamma Chia Organic Energy Beverages in select retailers including Whole Foods, Safeway and Target. Click on Mamma Chia to learn more about their other products.

Mamma Chia is offering one of my readers an amazing giveaway that includes:

  • One Week Supply of Clean Energy Beverages
  • One Week Supply of Chia Squeezes
  • Mama Chia Camelbak Water Bottle
a Rafflecopter giveaway No purchase is necessary to enter. One US entrant per household, per address. The Winner will be contacted by email and have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. The sponsor will be responsible for product shipment to the winner of this giveaway. 

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Thursday, December 18, 2014

Santa Belt Hair Bow Tutorial


Last week I showed you how I made my daughter's Christmas Skirt. I wanted to create a simple hair band to go with the skirt and this is what I came up with.

Supplies:
  • 2 inch black satin ribbon
  • scrap gold fabric
  • scrap red velvet fabric
  • fusible web
  • plain hair band
  • hot glue gun

Directions:
  1. Take scrap red velvet fabric and wrap around headband. Hot glue ends in place.
  2. Draw a one inch square. Draw 1/4" inch lines on each side of square. Draw another 1/4" line on right and left side of square.
  3. Place the buckle template underneath a piece of fusible web paper side up. Cut out and place on the wrong side of the gold fabric. Iron on and cut out the template you traced.
  4. Remove paper backing and place on top of the wrong side of another gold piece of fabric. Cut out.
  5. Cut a piece of ribbon that is  12" long. Overlap ends by 1/2" and sew in place. 
  6. Thread ribbon through the buckle going in from the back and out again into the back. 
  7. Glue the "belt" bow to the headband.  
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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Super Juicy Slow Cooker Whole Chicken


I can always find whole chicken on sale at my favorite supermarket so I always buy at least one for the week. I love making whole chicken at home because it's inexpensive and with a family of 3 we always have left overs. Roasting chicken is always a hit or miss for me. Sometimes it will be super juicy and sometimes it will be super dry. I blame my temperamental oven!

After hearing so many moms from my daughter's playgroup have success in cooking a whole chicken in the slow cooker I decided to give it a try. First I tried the method of balling up some aluminum foil in the bottom for the whole chicken to sit on. I found that it made my chicken too dry so I decided to put vegetables instead of foil.


My chicken came out so moist and juicy and I didn't have to babysit the chicken by checking on it every half hour. All I had to do was set it on top of the veggies and then slathered it with my butter seasoning mix and cooked it for 5 hours on high.


I was left with a delicious and flavorful broth that I will be making into a low carb soup (recipe coming soon!) and some left over chicken for my husbands lunch the next day. So dinner, lunch leftovers and a soup base cost me $3.31.


Ingredients:
  • 3 tblsp butter, softened
  • 1/2 tblsp garlic powder
  • 1/2 tblsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
  • 2 tsp salt (more or less to taste)
  • 1 tsp poultry seasoning
  • 1/2 tblsp paprika
  • onion
  • 2 medium carrots
  • 1/2 lemon
Directions:
  1. Chop carrots and onion into big chunks and place in the bottom of the slow cooker. 
  2. Squeeze lemon juice into a small bowl. Slice lemon in half and place in bottom of slow cooker with vegetables.
  3. Add butter and seasoning to bowl with lemon juice and mix well. 
  4. Slather the butter seasoning all over the bird including under the skin of the breasts. Place chicken on top of vegetables. 
  5. Cover and cook on high for 5 hours. 
  6. Strain and save broth for future use. 
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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Getting My Exercise Back on Track at Home + Giveaway!

**I received a free DynaPro Direct Resistance Band and Door Anchor for my review. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be a good fit for my readers. All opinions are 100% my own.


So I have to confess that I have not been to the gym in ages! With my husband having to work extra hours and with so many early morning meetings I have been finding it difficult to go to the gym. When he is off we tend to take our daughter to many different events planned around the holidays. She is in an amazing play group that plans so many different things that I want to do them all! Not to mention now my little ballerina goes to dance class once a week.

I feel myself back tracking again and not eating what I am supposed to at times. Sometimes my mentality is since I didn't go to the gym I already messed up so I can have a couple of chocolate kisses. I am definitely not where I want to be in my weight loss journey either. Though the Atkins diet is keeping me kind of on track with the eating I still have to get myself exercising so that I can lose the weight I want. I have a month in a half before I hit a year on this weight loss journey so I need to go hard!

Since I can't go to the gym without a babysitter I decided to try to get my exercise in at home. Like I said before I can't be too loud because I don't want to disturb my downstairs neighbors so I found a way around that. With my thick exercise mat and some pretty cool "quiet" exercise routines I am on my way to getting back on track.


I also kept in contact with the amazing DynaPro company and they were kind enough to send me a heavier resistance band and door anchor. I will be attempting Sean Berry's Workout Routine here: http://dynaprodirect.com/workouts/

I have tried so many other resistance bands and the ones from DynaPro are by far the best. They are much stronger and more durable than any of the ones I have ever used. I love the D handle with the comfort grip. It makes it so easy to hold and won't slip or hurt your hand like the standard fabric handles. The bands are made of anti-snap material that is 100% dipped in latex.


Click on DynaProDirect to see all of the other products they have to offer. If you are working out at home or need something to travel with the DynaPro Bands are a must!

a Rafflecopter giveaway No purchase is necessary to enter. One US entrant per household, per address. The Winner will be contacted by email and have 48 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. The sponsor will be responsible for product shipment to the winner of this giveaway. 

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Sunday, December 14, 2014

The #Cube™ is the Coolest Way To Display your Social Media Photos!


**I received a free #Cube for my review. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be a good fit for my readers. All opinions are 100% my own.


I found myself using social media sites years ago with the excitement of the birth of my nephew. I was a proud auntie and wanted to show him off and keep my family and friends updated on his little life. Then came my niece and daughter and I started sharing all of their little milestones. I have family and friends all over the place so it's nice to have one set place where they could see them.

I often find myself looking back at all of the pictures from my personal Facebook and Instagram accounts on my phone. Things got a lot bigger, easier and cooler for me when I got to review the #Cube™.


#Cube™  is an amazing, modern looking and easy-to-use wireless living photo canvas that displays your favorite social photo and video streams. It is a large 8" square and LCD touch screen display. It gives real-time and continuous delivery of a stream of photos and video clips. It is rechargeable, has built in Wi-Fi and is constantly updating itself to enable new features and application support.

It was super easy to set up. It has three buttons on top: power on, categories and favorites. It is also a touch screen so it only took a minute to configure. All I had to do was log into to my home WiFi network and then log on to my Instagram account. I then automatically saw all of the pictures from my feed scrolling through. I clicked on the categories button and had the following choices:

  • Feed
  • User
  • Hashtag
  • Popular
  • Favorites

With just the push of a button you can pick what streams on to the #Cube. I loved how I could just click on the heart (favorites) button and then set it up to just show those pictures. 

I think this would be an amazing Christmas gift especially for grandparents, friends and family that have social media accounts primarily to keep up to date with loved ones through pictures. My in-laws both upgraded their old flip phones to iPhones just to be able to see video and pictures of my daughter. Before that they had never touched a computer. I plan on gifting them my #Cube so that it can be easier for them to see my daughter. I know they will display it front and center and show it off to  anyone who comes to visit. 


Click on the link to find out more about the #Cube and purchase one for yourself.


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Saturday, December 13, 2014

Get White Teeth Easily with Dr. Song Professional Whitening Kit

This is a sponsored post written on behalf of Dr Song. I received the kit mentioned below. All opinions are 100% my own.


I have never had complaints about my smile or the look of my teeth but I always wished my teeth were a little whiter. I drink a lot of tea and have been drinking coffee lately so as I get older I see the effects of staining.

I have tried those strips that you just place on your teeth from popular brands but they just never worked for me. I also tried a whitening kit with custom trays and hated it because there was so much gel involved and the texture and taste of it made me gag. I decided to give it another shot at whitening my teeth with the Dr. Song Professional Whitening Kit.

First of all I love how you get everything you need in the kit. You even get an LED Blue Light to speed up the process.

In the kit you get:
 8 large syringes of whitening gel - good for 50 applications
• 1 large remineralization gel syringe
• gel applicator brush - for easy application of whitening gel
• LED Blue Light Accelerator - for acceleration of whitening process
• moldable teeth trays

The best part of the kit is that it is super easy to use and the instructions are so easy to follow. First you mold the trays to your teeth. Then all you have to do is put the gel in a little cup and brush it on your teeth with the brush provided. You put the trays on and put the light on top. I love that just a small amount of gel works and you don't have to have globs of it in your mouth.

These are my results after just 5 days of using it for an hour a day. I love how it made my teeth look healthier and whiter without it being a fake bright white. I am going to continue to use it until I get my desired whiteness.


Dr Song Medical products are made in the USA and is FDA compliant and a provider of professional products. It is the maximum strength allowed for a home teeth whitening kit and are the same ones used by dentists.

You can conveniently learn more about the Dr. Song Professional Whitening Kit and purchase it on Amazon.


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Friday, December 12, 2014

Delicious and Important Breakfast Choices on the Atkins 40


I was always the type of person that didn't like to eat breakfast in the morning. I would get up, get ready for work and get to work just on time. As a former teacher whenever I would have a free period I would hit the snack machine or the snack drawer at my desk. Then I would have whatever frozen meal I had in my mini-fridge that would still leave me hungry. I would get home by 3:30 and then I would snack and graze on unhealthy options before it was dinner time. It was a cycle that kept going on and on until I learned the importance of breakfast.

Eating a healthy breakfast really sets yourself up to have a good day. It starts you on the right foot and gives you enough satisfaction and energy to get you going during the day. I now know how important it is to stay low carb to not get those sugar spikes that eventually tire you out and to also eat some good fat to keep you satiated until snack time and then lunch.


Before starting this Atkins journey I thought it was all about bacon and eggs for breakfast. Though bacon and eggs are delicious I couldn't imagine eating the same thing everyday. I love that with with Atkins 40 you can eat things like oatmeal, fruit and Greek yogurt. I love having some oatmeal with berries or some Greek yogurt with some nuts like a parfait.


I have also started with low carb baking and made a delicious low carb pumpkin muffin that I had with a Atkins chocolate shake that packed a whopping 20 grams of protein! (Review of the Atkins shakes coming soon!)

When I don't have time to make breakfast I love that Atkins solves that problem too! They have different varieties of frozen breakfast sandwiches that you just pop in the microwave. All you have to do is take it out of the plastic, wrap it in a paper towel and microwave it for a minute and a half. That's it!



I have tried other light frozen breakfast sandwiches many months ago and found them to be super dry. The Atkins ones are so moist, buttery and flavorful. The best thing about them is that you get to eat a yummy English muffin while only consuming 5 net carbs! They have 4 different varieties: bacon, egg & cheese,  Canadian bacon, egg & cheese, sausage egg & cheese, and sausage and egg.


You can get more information on the breakfast sandwiches and the Atkins Plan and create your own meal plans by going to http://www.atkins.com. Be sure to follow them on Facebook and Twitter to get all of the latest information.

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This post is sponsored by FitFluential on behalf of Atkins.