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New Product Crush: Güd by Burt’s Bees

23 Nov

I was roaming the aisles of Target the other day when something new caught my eye. I was looking for a new body wash to try when I spotted Güd products, a new line by Burt’s Bees brand. They all smelled wonderful, but I went home with the Vanilla and Rice Milk body wash and am absolutely in love! Not only is my skin the softest it’s ever been, but I love that it is made of all natural ingredients with no petro chemicals, or artificial dyes or fragrances. If you “like” them on Facebook this week, you can even get a $1 off coupon so that you can try them out too! So far my impression of this new line is fabulous and I can’t wait to try out more of their products. Have you tried any of the Güd products? What did you think? Which flavor is your favorite?

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Cheap, Healthy, and Easy Cooking 101: Veggie Ramen

4 Jul

Recently I have been forcing myself to learn how to a) cook things and b) consume things that are more or less healthy. This mission was decided out of necessity, since this being the first summer I’m truly on my own, I’ve never had to really cook for myself before. At school I’m on the sorority meal plan, and when at home I never want to miss out on my favorite family meals. One simple, easy college staple is ramen noodle soup. I literally could eat bowls of that stuff, but on it’s own it can be a bit bland. Here’s a little alteration to basic ramen to spice it up a bit and add some healthy stuff!

Egg and Veggie Ramen (Makes 1 heaping meal portion, or 2-3 appetizer sized portions.)

Ingredients:

  • 1 package uncooked ramen (I like the chicken flavor best!)
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 generous cup of raw baby spinach
  • 1/4 bell pepper, diced

Directions:

  1. In a small pot, bring 2.5 cups of water to a rolling boil.
  2. In a bowl, whisk 2 whole eggs (yolks and whites) and set aside.
  3. Once water is boiling, add raw ramen noodles and let sit for 1 minute.
  4. After a minute, use a spoon to break apart the ramen.
  5. While stirring vigorously, pour in the whisked egg followed by the diced bell pepper. Keep stirring until egg bits look done. Warning: If you don’t stir quickly for at least a minute, you’re going to end up with one giant egg-noodle-monster-thing.
  6. Lastly, toss in the spinach and stir that around for another minute.
  7. Remove the pot from the burner and add the flavoring packet that came with the ramen. Let sit for 3 minutes before serving. (I’m lazy and don’t like to mix spices, but if experimentation is your thing, create your own flavor mix. I think garlic salt, cumin, and a dash of low-sodium soy sauce would be delish!)

It’s that easy! There wasn’t so much thought put into what veggies I used, I was trying to get rid of some things in my fridge. I also think mushrooms and sugar snap peas would be a great addition as well. What’s your favorite ramen hack? What types of things would you add?

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Currently Lusting…

21 Jan

One thing I’m currently lusting over is this Vera Bradley yoga mat that I saw in the student union bookstore when I was there to buy textbooks last week. It’s absolutely adorable, but definitely not something I need. The reviews online for the actual practice of yoga are sort of mediocre, but it’s cute nonetheless, no?                                { Vera Bradley yoga mat in Loves Me, originally $48, now $29.}

Are you a Vera fan? What about yoga? I’m trying to get back in to it after a too-long hiatus. I especially love that this bag has a spot for a water bottle!

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Rebirth/Retrospect

31 Dec

Fair warning: I know this post is a tad lengthier than normal, and not the usual “blog fare,” but it’s about something significant in my life and it would be very meaningful to me if you took the time to read it today.

Today being the last day that will ever exist of 2011, I had the full intention of sitting here and typing out the 3 pages worth of new year’s resolutions I wrote down the other night at 3am when I was having trouble falling asleep. Instead, something important happened and I need to tell you about it. But for you to understand its significance, I have to start at the beginning.

This past semester was really hard for me for a multitude of reasons. Although I definitely experienced some of the best moments of college so far, including new memories with old friends and now classic memories with new friends, there were also several elements which made it the worst semester I’ve ever had. It started when for the first time in my life I had to drop classes due to feeling impossibly overwhelmed. Taking the fewest number of units I’ve ever taken in my college career, I still had more work than ever before and harder material in each class; not to mention a plethora of group projects, a repetitive cycle in which I’m always the one who gets stuck doing all the work.

The intense academic strain coupled with my sorority responsibilities (which don’t get me wrong, I love to death) left me no time. Plus I was stressing about a crazy landlord situation and worried about a few close friends who were struggling with problems of their own. All these things began to build up and take their toll on me not just mentally, but physically. I went through periods of having zero appetite, insomnia, not being able to lay in bed because the knots in my back hurt so much, and experienced a resurgence of the severe migraines that I’d rarely felt in years. Overall, at times the physical problems were completely debilitating. But I refused to take a break and stressed myself out even more perfecting every single assignment.

That being said, there were also many amazing moments this semester. I really expanded my friend group and came to appreciate my sisters ten-fold. I pushed myself outside of my comfort zone and balanced a pretty active social life while working hard enough to pull a 4.0, despite the difficulty. I also took a strong leadership role in several of the clubs/activities I’m involved in, and feel very rewarded by and proud of what I have accomplished.

I had been looking forward to the beginning of winter break as a fresh start without responsibility where I could reset and start over. However, for some inexplicable reason, the stress and anxiety seemed to follow me home and physically I’ve been feeling unwell. (Well, that’s sort of an understatement.) It has slowly been dawning on me that something has to change. I can’t keep living my life with the anxiety that weighs me down and hurts me.

In 14 weeks I turn 21, and there are plenty of other wonderful things I’m looking forward to about next semester. I’m really looking forward to all of the classes I’m taking (except Spanish) and I can’t wait to start my new officer position as Scholarship Chair of my sorority, as well as get involved with a local youth group I’ve really been wanting to work with. Oh, did I mention I also have a very cool role in a truly awesome play that starts rehearsal in 2 weeks? (The Vagina Monologues by Eve Ensler.)

(Side note: I hope my blog doesn’t get sent to the spam folder for all you 200+ subscribers now that I included the word “vagina.” Oops, haha.)

I was sitting on the couch late the other night, feeling sick and lethargic, listening to the screeching and shrieking howls of yet another re-run of Toddlers & Tiaras and the sound was grating on my brain. I knew there had to be something more productive, worthwhile, valuable that I could be doing, should be doing, at that moment to stop the blah.

I scoured the house gathering up a handful of vanilla candles, scrounged up an old bottle of peppermint relaxation bubble bath, drew a hot bath, and just laid in the water. I listened to an entire album (Ma Fleur by The Cinematic Orchestra) and closed my eyes and breathed in the soothing, comforting smells. Cheesy? Maybe. But when I got out, I felt like a whole new person.

Tomorrow is the first day of 2012. And I have a feeling know it is going to be the most wonderful, absolute best year yet.

*crickets* Is anyone still reading this? If you’re out there in the blogosphere and you made it this far, please take a moment to leave a comment and tell me something lovely :)

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Kicking It Into Gear

23 Jan

Way back a few months ago when Oprah ran her favorite things episode, she highlighted a few gym items that she loved. Here are some of my new gym favorites inspired by a few of her picks.

Oprah's List athletic

From left to right: Vera Bradley small duffel, $69, Lulu Lemon athletic pants, $98, Nike Free Run shoes, $85, Champion sneakers by Payless, $35, American Apparel yoga pants, $35, American Apparel gym bag, $32.

Since writing my new year’s goals check-in post the other day, I’ve been hard at work on another resolution- getting into shape! Now let me preface this by saying I’m not trying to lose any weight. I’m a size zero. Maybe a two. And that’s thin enough…. but that doesn’t mean I can neglect my physical health. In high school I was relatively athletic, because regardless of what some people think cheerleading is actually pretty demanding. But since moving on to college I’m so exhausted after class and other activities that it seems like such a nuisance to drag my butt to the gym.
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