Wednesday, May 20, 2020

Taking a Ride ♥

Good Morning Friends! 

Last weekend when Rob suggested we go for a ride in the city I was not onboard.  I had woken up feeling a little off, and wasn't much in the mood for anything. I told him "you and John go, I'll stay home and clean."  I had things I wanted to do around the house.  He said I needed to get out of the house for a while and it was such a nice day we needed a change of scenery.  Plus there could be an ice cream in it for me if I come along. I knew he was right and even though I didn't really feel like it, I agreed. 

For the last month Rob and John have been watching the TV show of Rob's favorites.  John has really been enjoying it and was shocked to learn there is a real Cheers in Boston.  Rob said, "I'll show you!" and off we went. 

Normally a ride into the city is not something I enjoy because of the traffic.  Well, that is currently not an issue since most places are still closed and hardly anyone is on the road.  It was a nice smooth ride, window open, fresh air in my face.... I instantly felt better seeing life outside my own neighborhood.  We just cruised around and never got out of the car, but it was just what I needed to get me out of my funk.  Life is still happening and it's a good thing! 

The Boston Public Garden is my favorite part of the city.   There was quite a few people enjoying the nice weather.  
(I just hope they were being safe)

Why this city is so charming 

And there is is! Rob was thrilled to be able to park right in front!  
On a normal day that would never happen! 

Not pictured is John's smiling face : ) 

Especially when he saw this window because NORM is one of his favorite characters! 

And as promised I got my ice cream.  First DQ if the season.  

It ended up being a good day after all 

Monday, May 18, 2020

Current Favorite Things! ♥

Hello Friends! I hope you all had a nice weekend!

Yesterday I put together this video with some of my current favorite, food, and lifestyle!  All links I mention are in the YouTube description. 

I hope you enjoy it! 

Happy Monday everyone! Thanks for visiting and I hope you have a great day! 

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

Blueberry Breakfast Cookies ♥

Hello Friends! Happy Wednesday! 

Do you guys remember when I made blueberry breakfast cookies?   

This is only the second time I've made these.  I don't know why.  I really should make them more often.  After our granola bars disappeared  I was in desperate need of another healthy snack.  It was just a coincidence that I had picked up fresh blueberries at the market. I do have fresh cranberries in my freezer which I almost used, but in the end I went with the blueberries.  I imagine you could use any fruit you want. 

These cookies are yummy and very hearty.  They are called breakfast cookies but let's be real.  

They are good anytime : ) 

The recipe comes from the site No Diets Allowed that I found via Pinterest.

2 ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/4 cup honey
2 tsp vanilla
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp salt
2 1/2 cups quick oats
1/2 cup fresh blueberries

Preheat oven to 375.

In a medium size bowl mash bananas.  Add applesauce, honey, vanilla, cinnamon, and salt.  Mix well.  Add oats and mix until well combined.  Fold in blueberries.  Allow mixture to sit for 5 - 10 minutes so the oats can soak up the excess liquid. 

On a parchment lined baking sheet  (or lightly sprayed with non-stick spray) drop Large spoonfuls of dough (I used 1/4 cup measuring cup) about an inch apart. 

Bake in preheated oven 18-20 minutes until slightly golden brown. 

The recipe makes about 10 large cookies and should be stored in an airtight container in the fridge.  

These are so yummy and are perfect with coffee (or tea).  Yesterday I took one on a walk with me.  I realized I hadn't had an "'on the go" breakfast in a long time.  It felt good to eat outside : ) 

I hope you all are having a great week.  Can you believe May is almost half over? Where is the time going?  I'm starting to wonder what our summer will like??  

Sending positive vibes to you all of you! XO 

Thursday, May 7, 2020

10 things I Love - Quarantine Edition ♥

For the last few months I've been doing a series on here listing 10 random things I love.  It's my favorite series because it reminds me of how much the little things in life can bring me so much happiness. Things like a good grilled cheese sandwich or the smell of an old library can totally make my day.  

Today I'm listing 10 random things I love about being in quarantine.  I am guilty of doing a lot of complaining these days and I must remind myself that first and foremost I am grateful for my safety and the safety of my family.  I'm grateful to have a cozy home to be isolating in and to have my husband, son, and parents here with me.  The world is a scary place right now and it's the little things in my day to day life that are bringing me the most joy. 

Here are ten of those random things I love about quarantine:

Not waking up to an alarm everyday

Having time in the morning to take a long shower and use my homemade sugar scrub 

Random afternoon walks/drives

Giving more thought to meals and meal planning

Being able to enjoy Spring not cooped up in my office. 

Rewatching some of my favorite old movies like Some Like it Hot (which I just watched last night :)

Adult coloring books. So therapeutic and addictive. 

Having time to catch up and read my favorite blogs. Also discovering new ones!

Staying in comfy clothes and working in my slippers

Taking time to having a nice lunch (not something I would usually do at work).

I'm realizing that everything I just listed has been very good for my mental well being. 

There is always something to be grateful for.

Be well my friends!  Thinking of you! 

Wednesday, May 6, 2020

Homemade Granola Bars ♥

Hello Friends! Happy Wednesday! 

Are you snacking like a maniac like I am? If so I have something to feed your addiction : ) 

Today I'm sharing this easy recipe for homemade granola bars.  I started making these because John loves them and he can't have store bought because of his nut allergy.  Come to find out they taste better (and have less sugar) than the store bought ones. It's also nice to be able to customize what you put in them.  

 I like one (or two) with a cup of tea for an afternoon snack myself.  Anything with a bit of chocolate in it soothes me these days : ) 

Here's the recipe if you want to give them a try:

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees.

Line a 9x13 baking dish with parchment paper and spray the paper with non-stick spray.

In a large bowl combine:

4 1/2 cups quick cooking oats
1 cup flour
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp vanilla
2/3 cup softened butter
1/2 cup honey
1/3 cup brown sugar
2 cups mini chocolate chips
 (add in any extras you like.....)

Mix all the ingredients together with a wooden spoon and press firmly into the pan.  Bake 18-22 minutes.  The edges will be golden brown.  Let cool for 10 minutes and then carefully cut into bars.

 *Don't try to pick them up at this point or they will fall apart.  They will set as they cool.

Let cool completely and store in an airtight container ♥

Note: add in whatever "extras" you want.  John likes straight chocolate chip, but I think dried cranberries, coconut, raisins, or nuts (if you can eat them) would be so good in these bars!

I hope you all are having a positive start to the month.  It's hard to believe we are in MAY and have been home for almost 2 months!  Praying to see the light at the end of the tunnel soon! Summer is coming.  I hope we can all get out and enjoy it! ♥

Stay safe everyone!  

Monday, May 4, 2020

Easy Weeknight Meal: Brown Sugar Baked Chicken ♥

Hello Friends! 

I hope you all had a nice weekend.  In my corner of the world we were finally able to enjoy some nice weather.  On Saturday & Sunday we almost hit 70 degree!  It was certainly good for our moods, that's for sure! 

Today I want to share with you an easy weeknight meal.  This is a favorite chicken dish in my family.  The chicken has a brown sugar marinade which caramelizes as it bakes.  It's delicious and I'm pretty sure you already have the ingredients....: ) 

All you need is: 

3 or 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts 
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tbs paprika
1 tsp oregano
1 tbs garlic powder
salt & pepper 

Salt and pepper the chicken breasts.

Pour the brown sugar, paprika, oregano, and garlic powder
  in a plastic bag.

Add the chicken and shake to coat. 

Leave the chicken (in the bag) in the fridge 2 - 3 hours  (or even overnight) to absorb the flavors. 

 The longer it marinates the better it is!

When ready to cook, preheat oven to 350. Arrange the chicken on a foil lined baking sheet.

Bake 25 - 30 minutes.

I sprinkled a little bit of parsley just to make it look pretty. 


And that's it!

I hope you liked this recipe.  I have a few others to share with you this week so check back soon!

Happy Monday Everyone!  :) 

Wednesday, April 29, 2020

Natural Beauty ♥

Hello Friends! 

How are you all doing?  I'm hanging in there. I've had a day or two recently where I've felt "ehh".... you know the feeling.  My hair is beyond the point of no return and we've had so much rain lately I haven't been doing much walking.  My skin however, is looking and feeling better than ever.  Mostly because I haven't been wearing as much make up at home. I do still put makeup on daily, but with a much lighter hand than normal.  I need to be ready for last minute zoom work meetings!

I've also started incorporating homemade sugar scrubs back into my weekly beauty routines.  They are super fun to make and feel so good on the skin. 

I decided to repost 2 of my favorite at home beauty treatments in case you are looking for a little pick me up also.  This will have to do until the beauty salons open!

Olive Oil & Honey Sugar Scrub 

Sugar scrubs are great because they are natural and chemical free.  They remove dead skin and leave your skin brighter and healthier.  I've incorporated a sugar scrub into my weekly routine and it's working wonders. 

Here's the secret...

 Olive oil.  You may think of olive oil as just a staple for your pantry but it's also a staple for your makeup bag as well.  Olive oil is an antioxidant, won't clog pores, and is an exfoliating enhancer.  It's effects will leave your skin looking renewed and glowing. Go figure!
This recipe also contains honey.  Honey can do wonders for you skin, which is why you find it in so many beauty products.  Honey acts as an anti-aging agent and moisturizer.  It also has the ability to absorb and retain moisture and this helps to keep the skin well hydrated. 

Here is the formula I use:
1/2 cup granulated sugar
2 tablespoons of honey
3 tablespoons of olive oil

Mix all the ingredients together until you get a gritty wet sand consistency.  (Add a little more olive oil if needed) 

Store in an airtight container.  I put mine in a glass jar ♥

Use your scrub 2 - 3 times a week.  I take it in the shower with me so I can use it on my face, neck, elbows, and feet. 

It's amazing!


 ...if you need something to bring a radiance back into your complexion I suggest this quick exfoliating treatment.  

It's like a 5 minute spa treatment at home! ♥ 

Coconut Oil & Baking Soda Facial Exfoliator 

All you need is 2 tablespoons of coconut oil and one tablespoon of baking soda. 

I've spoken about my love for coconut oil before when I posted my favorite skin care products for winter, last December.  I've been applying it to my skin daily for the last several months. And naturally, I'm by no means and expert on this, I only speak from my own experience ♥ 

Coconut oil is healing and nurturing to the skin.  It's naturally antibacterial and antifungal.  
Coconut oil is used as an ingredient in many moisturizers because of its anti aging properties.  It's rich in proteins that will keep your skin healthy and rejuvenated! 

Baking soda is a very gentle exfoliator that works wonders and won't harm your skin. It's also .69 a box and how can you go wrong with that! 

Mix them together in a bowl and apply to your face and neck. 

I also like to rub some on my lips for a little lip treatment 

Leave it on for 5 minutes and then wash it off with warm water. 

I suggest applying the mask over your bathroom sink because you will want to wash the excess off your hands.  

Lately, what I have been doing is applying it right before I get into the shower.  Let the water run and once I'm in there wash it off.  Your face will feel incredibly smooth and hydrated.

Pat dry and apply your moisturizer ♥ 

One last tip I want to leave you with is this.  The other day I had been feeling sluggish.  It suddenly occurred to me that I hadn't drank any water the entire day.  Coffee yes.  Water no.  When I'm at work I am constantly drinking water, but at home not so much.  Since that realization I have been making a conscious effort to drink more water.  

Drinking water promotes healthy skin, reduces fatigue, helps elevates mood, and has countless overall health benefits. 

So drink up! 

Do you have any at home beauty treatments that you've been doing? I'd love to hear about them. 

Also, if anyone has suggestions for exercise or yoga apps (or YouTube channels) that you've tried, please let me know : ) 

Be well everyone!  ♥