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Sportsbrasandsippycups.com is finally up and running!!!

I finally have things back the way they need to be! Wow again, I am not good with computers at ALL!!! Lol. Either way I am back on track and ready to go! Check out the new site and subscribe!! I am planning all kinds of interesting blogs and much more! Come get motivated and inspired!!! I hope you all had a fabulous long holiday weekend and a great first day back! Let me know what you were up to???

And the winner is…….

Congratulations, Ann Lyfe you are the winner of the giveaway!!!

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Please, message me on either Facebook or Twitter so I can get your info and get your prize pack out!!!!

My site will be down today, so I can get my website the way I want it! Thank you all for your continued support!!!! 

Hope you all have an awesome day!!!

Oops!!! Please forgive all the extra posts!

I am having technical difficulties on my website. The giveaway is still going on, so you can still enter at www.blog.sportsbrasandsippycups.com Hurry and enter to win!!! I am unfortunately cutting the entry time a little short it will end tonight at 11pm and I will do the drawing tomorrow morning! So again, hurry and enter to win!!!! 🙂

A 2 year old an…

A 2 year old and her chores….


Today has been a great day so far! Zoe and I got up early and did our mile run. I am amazed at how much Zoe loves it! She is not a morning person at all and drags worse than I do to get out of bed, but once I mention running, she is up and ready to go!

 


     Once we get back home, we eat breakfast and start our chores. Yes, I said OUR chores. Zoe has had small chores since she has been able to walk well. I have had a lot of people ask, what can a toddler possibly get done? Well she does quite a bit around the house. Her chores are mainly “Helping” with mine, And let me tell you,  she is actually quite the helper! I do not expect perfection with her work. Just effort. Whatever she does not complete to my specifications, I go back and fix without her knowledge. Usually around nap time. When she knows she helped and did a great job, she gets a boost of self confidence! That is important for every child!!!!


Her chores are:  helps with rinsing, loading and unloading of the dishwasher, she gathers and sorts laundry, she helps fold and put away laundry, she dusts, picks up her toys, feed the dog, and helps me wash floors (before you ask I hate mops, they harbor bacteria and are nasty lol and as far as Swiffers go, they don’t scrub well enough for me, so yes I wash the hard floors by hand) Yes, I am a clean freak/germaphobe lol.

       
     I do believe that children should have responsibility instilled at a young age. At this point Zoe loves helping me and eagerly starts her chores as soon as we finish breakfast. Obviously, I know this will chage the older she gets, but it will help her realize that as a family we work together to get things done! It also keeps them from vegging out in front of the TV.  Here is helpful chart for what chores are appropriate for your child’s age group. I play it by ear as far as what I think she is ready for. She really surprises me when it comes to what I think she is ready for and what she can actually do! She really wants to run the vacuum, but isn’t quite tall enough or strong enough to push it. Walking behind it while I vacuum seems to work well for now. Once a week when we vacuum the furniture, and that is  all her!!!


I am thinking about starting a chore chart for her, since her chore list has gotten longer. I think implementing an incentive program will also keep her motivated to get her chores done! Like, maybe a day at the park, library, a toy she can pick out, or something like that. She can earn sticker when her chores are done, then at the end of the week she can have her reward!


Do your kiddos help out around the house?  What chores do your kids do? What are your thoughts on a chore chart/incentive program? What types of incentives do you suggest?
I love hearing back from you, so feel free to comment or email me! Don’t forget to enter the giveaway at the top of the page! Hope everyone has a great day!!!! 

The Homepage gi…

I FINALLY got my Homepage up and running!!!!! It literally took hours basically all day and most of last night. I am not technically savvy in the least and had the hardest time getting any tech support from any website I was working with, this one included! I was very frustrated yesterday!!! Click here to get your self entered to win!

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   I woke up early to get my run out of the way before i sat down to start working on the site. It was a great mile despite not feeling well and it being muggy and wet out. The hurricane Isaac weather made it’s way to the Midwest, so it was dark gloomy and wet. Great, because Josh and Zoe, who also were not feeling well, slept in. It was nice to pound the pavement without having to push a large clunky stroller and a 30lb toddler.I improved my time by 3 mins. that made the day start off pretty good.

I was excited to get to work on my website, but I had no idea how hard and confusing everything would be. I am happy to say, not only did I get it done, but I did it by myself! It may not be perfect, but it is mine!!!!!  🙂

I have the Giveaway link up!!!!  Go to my Homepage then click on My Blog to enter. In case you missed it, I am giving away some healthy snacks for you to try!!!!

The “Welcome to my Homepage and Thank you for reading” Giveaway! It will start on September 1st (Today), you will be able to enter 3 times a day till September 4th. On September 5th i will do a random drawing and One lucky reader can win a prize pack with 2 Quest Nutrition Bars from my affiliate Quest Nutrition (Peanut Butter Supreme and Strawberry Cheesecake), 3 of the new Dentyne Ice Split2Fit packs (Peppermint, Spearmint, and Arctic Chill) I am a BzzAgent and I want a lucky reader to try those as well, And last, but not least, a 10G bag of Brother’s All Natural Fuji Apple Crisps!

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     I am very excited about the new Homepage and I hope you check it often for special giveaways as well to keep up with SportsBrasAndSippyCups!

You can now Follow me at SportsBrasAndSippyCups.com

  I HAVE MOVED!!!! CHECK OUT SPORTSBRASANDSIPPYCUPS.COM FOR MORE FAMILY AND FITNESS FUN AS WELL AS OCCASIONAL GIVEAWAYS!!! I HOPE YOU CONTINUE TO FOLLOW ME 🙂 TODAY’S BLOG IS ALREADY UP! GO CHECK IT OUT!!!! 

The Homepage giveaway has begun!!!!!!

I FINALLY got my Homepage up and running!!!!! It literally took hours basically all day and most of last night. I am not technically savvy in the least and had the hardest time getting any tech support from any website I was working with, this one included! I was very frustrated yesterday!!! Click here to get your self entered to win!

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   I woke up early to get my run out of the way before i sat down to start working on the site. It was a great mile despite not feeling well and it being muggy and wet out. The hurricane Isaac weather made it’s way to the Midwest, so it was dark gloomy and wet. Great, because Josh and Zoe, who also were not feeling well, slept in. It was nice to pound the pavement without having to push a large clunky stroller and a 30lb toddler.I improved my time by 3 mins. that made the day start off pretty good.

I was excited to get to work on my website, but I had no idea how hard and confusing everything would be. I am happy to say, not only did I get it done, but I did it by myself! It may not be perfect, but it is mine!!!!!  🙂

I have the Giveaway link up!!!!  Go to my Homepage then click on My Blog to enter. In case you missed it, I am giving away some healthy snacks for you to try!!!!

The “Welcome to my Homepage and Thank you for reading” Giveaway! It will start on September 1st (Today), you will be able to enter 3 times a day till September 4th. On September 5th i will do a random drawing and One lucky reader can win a prize pack with 2 Quest Nutrition Bars from my affiliate Quest Nutrition (Peanut Butter Supreme and Strawberry Cheesecake), 3 of the new Dentyne Ice Split2Fit packs (Peppermint, Spearmint, and Arctic Chill) I am a BzzAgent and I want a lucky reader to try those as well, And last, but not least, a 10G bag of Brother’s All Natural Fuji Apple Crisps!

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     I am very excited about the new Homepage and I hope you check it often for special giveaways as well to keep up with SportsBrasAndSippyCups!

                                                     www.SportsBrasAndSippyCups.com

Turning my OOPS moment into a good thing!!!

So I am new to the blogging world and I apparently didn’t do my research, I found out that my WordPress blog, can not have any affiliates. OOPS!!! Lol I will have this blog redirected tomorrow to one that can. 🙂 As of yesterday, I took on Two new affiliates! Vitacost and they everything under the sun from Chia seeds to Zinc And Quest Nutrition!  I am very excited about it!!! Quest has “Clean” Protein bars, which we LOVE and they are still tasty! We got a sample shipment in yesterday, so we could try them out before agreeing to anything. 😉

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   There are several flavors to choose from. What really perked my interest about them, was the fact that they are 20G of protein, Gluten free, No sugar alcohols, No added sugar, No Soy Protein, No Glycerine, and just absolutely No Junk ingredients! They are pretty plain looking when you open the package, but for what they lack in looks, I think they make up for in taste! We read to heat them up for 15 seconds in the microwave to get a cookie like flavor. We tried the Chocolate Brownie and the Apple Pie first.

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     Again, they tasted better than they looked lol. The Chocolate Brownie was okay. I won’t lie and say it was phenomenal. On a scale from one to ten, I would give it a 5 I don’t hate it, but I don’t love it either. I am not a huge chocolate fan, I actually rarely touch the stuff. However, Josh is a HUGE chocolate fan and he agreed that it was just okay. His actual words were “For being a “clean” protein bar, it was good.” The Apple Pie bar blew us away! it was delicious!!! I wish I had a whole box of just them!!! WOW!!! I was seriously sold after one bite! (I LOVE Apple Pie lol) The biggest selling point to me is that I have an on the go snack that I am comfortable giving my family! Zoe loved them both! She thought they were candy, so that works great for us lol. Links to both places will be on my new site to check out, hopefully tomorrow!!!!!

    I decided to have a “Thank you for reading” Giveaway! It will start on September 1st. One lucky reader can win a prize pack with 2 Quest Bars (Peanut Butter Supreme and Strawberry Cheesecake), 3 of the new Dentyne Ice Split2Fit packs (Peppermint, Spearmint, and Arctic Chill) I am a BzzAgent and I want a lucky reader to try those as well. Gum is actually my only vice. It is by no means clean, but I chew it when I workout or when I have a sweet tooth. And last, but not least, a 10G bag of Brother’s All Natural Fuji Apple Crisps!

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       Again, I will wait till I get this switched over to the new site, so please continue to follow me when I make the big move!!!! I will have a re-direct link. 🙂

     Today was family fun day, which consisted of hitting the grocery store for some Quinoa, touring Costco, hitting the largest local liquor store for Josh’s special Autumn craft beers, a lovely Mediterranean lunch, and a trip to the mall for some nice window shopping.

      We having been looking for new places to eat lunch on family fun days. We try to find low cost places with semi healthy choices. Typically I make Josh’s days off my cheat days. Today we found a place called Mario’s Donuts & Cafe. I know it has “Healthy” written all over it lol. 😉 We went in and they have a good size Mediterranean menu! Josh was super excited to get a Gyro lol. That was his cheat meal, a Gyro and beer battered onion rings. Zoe chose a donut :-/ Lol not a huge surprise that a 2yr old chose that for her cheat meal. I chose a Gyro salad. It was HUGE and Oh my goodness, tasty!!! I only got a picture of my meal, because the elderly man sitting by us looked a little weirded out since I had my camera out lol.

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       So we give Mario’s 2 thumbs up and we will definitely be back there next week!!!! Overall, a fabulous family fun day!

     We have been trying to teach Zoe how to use the camera. She keeps taking self portraits. I am fine with that, because I can never have enough pics of my babygirl 😉 I thought I would end with those today, so enjoy!

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    What fun things do you do with your family? What is your go to cheat meal? Do you have a vice that you just can’t quit? Do all natural protein bars interest you? I love hearing back from you all so please comment away!!!

                                                Hope everyone has a beautiful day!!!!!! 🙂

Running, “Clean” eating snacks on the go, Future Giveaways and more!

    Zoe and I went on our second run this morning! I was a little concerned heading out, because my legs are still very sore from leg day in the gym. However, I did pretty good! I beat the first run’s time by almost a minute. Today it was 16:20, still an awful time lol, but better 🙂 Zoe was excited that we were going on a run! 

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    I am so happy she enjoys it!!! The weather is still a little warm and humid for my liking. We started our run a little earlier this morning than last time, hoping it wouldn’t be as bad, it was just as hot lol. The first hill is the easiest for me. 

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       It isn’t horribly steep and Zoe yells “Go Mama Go” the whole time lol. She hates it when I walk. She has the need for speed! 😉 Her encouraging yells keep me going for sure. She is quite the motivator!!! If I slow down too much she does not hesitate to turn around and let me know it! 

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        So all in all, my second time out was a success! I need to ditch this stroller and get a decent jogging stroller though! This one will work for now, but I am afraid not for long lol.

     I am also anxiously awaiting the UPS man today!!! As you know from previous posts, that we are trying to eat as “Clean” as possible. Some things that we still want to have in our diets, but have a hard time finding without all the artificial additives and preservatives. Protein bars being one of those items. I love protein bars, because they are easy when you are on the go! High protein snacks are a must. Ones that you don’t have to keep in a cooler are a HUGE plus!!!! Typically we bring baked eggs to snack on when heading out and about, but you need a cooler for them and they can still be stinky. Baked eggs are like boiled eggs, just baked. They have a creamier texture and with baking them, they come out perfect every time! Zoe refuses to eat boiled eggs, but LOVES baked eggs. The child can tell every time if I try to give her a boiled one.

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        Anyway, back to Protein bars 😉 As I was saying finding “Clean” protein bars are a little difficult to find! I have had several brands that I LOVE, but they truly are not good for us at all! When I came across a brand that actually is clean, I was not only happy, but super excited to try them! I reached out to the company to see if they would allow me to review the bars and they happily obliged!

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    I have heard excellent reviews on them so far!!! So, that is what I am waiting so anxiously for today! If I love them as much as I think I am going to, they will become an affiliate of this page! I will also add some to a small plethora of items for a future giveaway, so you guys will be able to try them too! Keep your eyes peeled for that!!! 

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 How often do you run?  What are your favorite on the go snacks? Do you find yourself lugging a small cooler around for your snacks? What is your favorite Protein bar flavor or brand?

   Josh is off tomorrow and Friday, so we are getting ready for our family fun days! Hope everyone enjoys this lovely day!!!!! 

 

 

To achieve greatness, you must set GOALS!!!

So last night I did a Twitter chat with many great people associated with FitFluential and ViewSport. It was fun and I really enjoyed it! The topic was Goals and Goal setting. I did miss some of the conversation, due to trying to cook a late dinner and control an unruly toddler lol. What I did catch was awesome!

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    I have my ultimate goal, which is to be able to compete in Women’s Physique competitions.

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   I have smaller goals to help me get there! One of my smaller goals is to run (with Zoe in a stroller) in a 5k. I think they look fun and would be a great accomplishment for both of us! I know she would love it!!! We started running yesterday 🙂 I had planned what I thought was the perfect route around our subdivision. It was 1.2 miles. I did not take into consideration that I would be pushing a 30lb two year old in a large clunky stroller, or that I routed us to go up 2 large hills lol. To boot, it was super humid out!!! Our time was 17:18. I was proud that we got out there and did it, but I was disappointed with my time.  I do know that I will continue to run 2 or 3 times a week and that my time will improve!

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   I didn’t think that there would be much quality time for us while running. Surprisingly enough, there really was! We were always talking about pretty flowers, trees, dogs, and anything else we saw on our short running journey. I am hoping to get Josh out there with us once a week! I think it would be another great way to have family fun time! we shall see if he agrees lol 😉

 I believe setting goals is a great example for Zoe! I want her to learn that in order to get what she wants, she need to make a plan, set goals, then work hard to accomplish them!

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    We have accomplished several small goals to get us where we are now. Things like: Drinking more water, keeping our sugar intake less than 35 grams a day, cutting out artificial sugars, throwing out anything that has artificial colors, flavors, and preservatives, learning to cook healthier meals, and consistently weight training!

We have both (Josh and I) had slip ups and times where we have gotten lazy or off track. The great thing about sharing our goals with each other, is we do keep each other accountable! I believe in marriage you have to work as a team. Supporting each other and pushing each other is very important! In this house we are very goal oriented and love helping each other achieve greatness!!!

Do you have a goal? Do you have smaller goals to help you achieve the main goal? Who in your life inspires and pushes you? Do you involve your family in your dreams?

Get out there and accomplish your goals! Do not let any set back hold you down from your greatest achievements!!!

I thought it was just another “Diet Pill” Wow, was I wrong!!!!

A couple of weeks ago I heard about a product called SkinnyBits. At first I did not pay much attention to it, because I don’t usually fall into a diet pill fads. I started seeing more people talking about. Out of curiosity I looked it up and saw that it was in fact NOT a supplement or “Magic” diet pill. It IS in fact 100% Spirulina Algae tabs. This did actually perked my curiosity more and I was pretty stoked to score a sample to try them out!

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This is the actual sample I received 🙂

While waiting on their arrival, I wanted to do more research on Spirulina Algae. I have a friend who has been ordering it from a different company and mixing it with their food and shakes for years! What strikes me as amazing, is how high in protein it is! Protein is a huge part of my diet. It helps me build lean muscle mass when I am weight training.

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   Raw protein is not the only valuable benefit though! It is also full of major vitamins: A1, B1, B2, B6, B12 , C and E. It also contains beta-carotene, all the essential fatty acids, as well being 62% amino acids. It is also is full of important minerals like calcium, iron, zinc, and the list goes on and on! Pretty impressive really!!!

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   Upon more research, I found that the blue-green algae is great for several things: weight loss, stress, fatigue, anxiety, diabetes, ADHD, depression, PMS, improving your memory, lowering your cholesterol, increasing your metabolism, preventing heart disease, this list actually goes on and on too!

I even found some recipes that incorporate it! Algae smoothies, Guacamole, even Energy bars!

It is widely available in many forms and in many price ranges. With SkinnyBits or any of their HealthBits, you can order a bag of the tabs and they send a tin (like the sample one) that you can refill and carry with you. There is a smell to the tabs when you first open them. I just swallowed them like pills, but the paperwork that came with them said you can eat them too. It did warn that it is an acquired taste though 😉 LOL I wasn’t quite ready to acquire it. I was impressed with the product and will probably be adding Spirulina Algae to our diet. I would definitely check them out!!! By the way,I am not being paid by HeathBits for reviewing their product, I simply am impressed by the health benefits of Spirulina Algae. I would however use/or promote their product, because I do believe in it’s benefits! You will never see a product on my blog, that I would not use myself or give to my family!

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What the tabs actually look like!

Like I said, you can buy it in many forms and many different price ranges. I still have questions about the quality if buying from a different company at a cheaper price? Being a frugal mama, I obviously want the best bang for my buck! Certainly, I do believe it will greatly benefit my family and I, but I always want to make sure I am getting the best price too!

Huge thank you to SkinnyBits for allowing me to sample your product! If you have more questions about SkinnyBits, you can click on their name anywhere in my blog to go to their website. You can also get a 10% discount on any of the HealthBits by using the code BLOG! Definitely check them out!!!!

Have you ever tried Spirulina Algae? What are your thoughts on the health benefits? Would this be something you would add to your family’s diet? I love input from my readers, so if you have comments or questions, fire away!!!

Zoe and I are going to start running today! I have her stroller ready, snacks all packed, and our route mapped out! Should be fun!!! Hope you all enjoy your day!!!

Baby Sign Language Q & A

I get a ton of questions about baby signing and ASL (American Sign Language). Mostly about teaching sign to your baby or child. I figured today was a great day to address a lot of the questions I get!

The most popular questions are: How old should we start?, Is it too late to start?, How do we start?, and Will it interfere with or delay their speech development?

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   I believe that it is never too early to start!!! I started signing to Zoe when she was born. She obviously had no idea what I was doing, why I was doing it, or was able to sign back, but she was absorbing the information. 😉 I sign and speak to her as much as I can. Be it in songs, reading, or just having a normal conversation with her. For a beginner, It would be best to learn a few signs that you know you want your child to use often. With a baby it would be things like Mom, Dad, Milk, Eat, Wet, Potty, Diaper, Sleep, Play, and other signs you want them to use to make communicating with you easier. There are a plethora of books, Dvd’s, and flash cards that make learning easy and fun for both of you! You will be pleasantly surprised one day when your child begins signing back! Zoe started between 4 and 5 months old! Some of her favorite Dvd’s are: Signing Time, WeeHands,  and My First Signs She actually has a ton of books and dvd’s, too many to list lol. We also pull videos up on Youtube.

Here are some of Zoe signing when she was younger!

Zoe’s baby signs, More signs, and yes even more lol She actually has several lol At the age of 26mths she knows well over 150 signs, not including her alphabet.

Is it too late to start? Never!!!!! Anyone can learn sign language no matter what age! Baby, child, or adult! It is a beautiful and fun language! I grew up watching my parents teach friends who wanted to be able to communicate better with them. Some even went on to make it a profession! There are even classes in most areas for every age level! Just imagine the parents who learn and teach the siblings when they have a deaf child enter their family 😉

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       For infants, will it interfere with their speech development? The answer to that, is absolutely not. If anything, it helps them learn to speak quicker! Believe it or not, several speech pathologists use sign to help children who are struggling with their speech.

I found this on MSNBC:

Q: Baby sign language has become extremely popular recently. I’ve heard only wonderful things about it, including that it eases frustration and promotes verbal language. However, my niece has been taught baby sign language and is now 18 months old and has yet to speak a word. She seems content to just demand food and drink with her hands. Does baby sign language actually delay verbal language in many cases?

A: The short answer is no, according to Dr. Lynn Mowbray Wegner, a pediatrician in Chapel Hill, N.C., and a spokesperson for the American Academy of Pediatrics. In fact, signing is a very good … err … sign. It means your niece is communicating effectively, which is a major step at this point in her life.

The exact form of this communication varies. Some parents rely on gestures based on American Sign Language. Others create their own signs for everyday objects and emotions.

Signing has not only opened up communication for my daughter and I, but I think it is a wonderful bonding tool! With both of my parents being deaf, I grew up in essentially two different cultures. Knowing sign language opened many doors for me, and I hope it does the same for my daughter.

Have you taught your children a different language? Are you interested in learning sign language or teaching it to your kids? Do you have any questions about ASL or baby signs?

I am happy to answer any questions you may have! Feel free to ask me anything, or leave a comment!

Hope everyone enjoys this beautiful Saturday!!!

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Finally got to treat ourselves to some UNREAL candy!

We had a wonderful family fun day at home just relaxing! I am a BzzAgent and received a BzzKit today for UNREAL candy, so obviously, we had to make a quick trip to Walgreens to check these out. You can click on the link below to read more!

I have been anxiously awaiting the arrival of this kit!!! We love to treat ourselves and like I stated in my previous blog, “Food or poison? What are you feeding your family?”, we are striving to keep our diet, as well as Zoe’s, as clean of artificial colors and preservatives as possible!!! We got to try what is called Unreal 54, which is like peanut M&M’s. Zoe just loved them!!! The colors were a little different, but she loved them just the same. I thought they were pretty. I didn’t get a good picture of the actual candy, because Zoe gobbled them all down so quick lol.

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        Josh had the Unreal 77, which is like Reese’s peanut butter cups. He thought it was awesome they didn’t have all the junk in them! I tried Unreal 8, which is comparable to a Snickers bar. I was in heaven!!!!

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      The price was comparable to the junked up versions too! We will definitely be purchasing them again! They are a perfect sometimes treat for my family! 🙂

    Has anyone else tried these? What are your thoughts on candy that has no artificial flavors or colors?

Would you like to be Unjunked? If you would like to try some, I have a few coupons for buy one get one free that I would be happy to send you! If you are interested, comment here and follow me on Twitter and I will get your info from there! Remember, I only have a few more coupons, so first come first serve!

Have a happy day!!!!

The Good, The Bad, and The Butter…..

My whole life I have been taught that all saturated fats are evil. I was told that processed vegetable oils and margarine spreads were the healthiest way to go. I think everyone has been sold on this idea of “healthy” for the past 30 years! Since my family and I have started eating clean and researching what we are putting into our bodies. We are learning, or I should say, relearning what is actually nutritionally sound for our own personal health.

Margarine has been sold to us as this heart healthy option right? Let’s dig a little deeper shall we….. we will see the process in which Margarine is made:

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        Basically, they process the cheapest GMO vegetables into a gray smelly grease, clean it back up, bleach it, dye it, remove the smell, and add that “butter” flavor and call it health food. Wow, REALLY???

        We prefer saturated fats and so do our bodies! The types of fats my family consumes are: Coconut oil, Palm oil, Butter, Animal fats, Heavy cream, Olive oil, and Organic lard. Are we concerned that we are going to increase our risk for heart disease and high cholesterol? Absolutely not! There are several reasons that these saturated fats are great for you!

  •    To promote stronger bones. How you ask? Saturated fats help your body absorb calcium and regulate your calcium levels. Very important for women!!!!
  •     They contain fatty acids such as lauric acid, myristic acid and caprylic acid, which are antifungal, antimicrobial and antiviral, and all contribute towards a stronger immune system which in turn is more vigilant against the development of cancerous cells.
  •     Saturated fats are more stable at higher temperatures than other fats, so they are less likely to become oxidized and turn into cell-damaging free radicals, as polyunsaturated vegetables oils frequently do.
  •     They are the most valuable source of Vitamins A, D, and K which are necessary for hormone regulation, reproduction, immunity, bone health and much more.
  •     Supports a healthy brain! A diet that skimps on healthy saturated fats robs your brain of the raw materials it needs to function optimally. Your brain is made of fats. 😉

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     The list actually goes on and on!!!  There are several links and studies that have been done that coincide with what I have learned. Here are a few of the links: MuscleHackNourishing Days, Natural Bias, The Oiling of America, and The Four Hour Work Week

We have chosen these saturated fats, because of all of the reasons above, as well as a few more I did not list. They are part of a natural and clean diet.

I always find this subject to be an interesting topic of discussion! What are your thoughts on Saturated fats?

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Food or Poison? What are you feeding your family???

When I was pregnant I was very adamant about not consuming artificial colors or additives, due to the risk of it harming my baby. I got a lot of guff from friends and family!  Even at my baby shower!!! I didn’t want to eat the cake lol. It was a cute cake, I was just scared to risk anything. I had waited a long time for this blessing!!! I did end up having a piece out of guilt lol. 😉

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      Having a horrible craving for fruity candy. As you may have guessed, I had the hardest time finding anything without all the colors. I was told Red 40, Blue 1, and Yellow 6 were the worst. Well, you would not believe how many things, not just candy, have these colors in them!!!! Cereal, candy, chips, juice, soda, yogurt, cheese, Lunchables, heck even pickles!!!

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         Needless to say, I was not a happy pregnant lady lol. I did my best to stay strong. At this point in my life, I had never heard of “Clean Eating”. My diet before pregnancy was anything but healthy!  You ask, what could I have possibly read that made me decide to have a more restrictive diet?

As CSPI reported:

“Almost all the toxicological studies on dyes were commissioned, conducted, and analyzed by the chemical industry and academic consultants. Ideally, dyes (and other regulated chemicals) would be tested by independent researchers.

Furthermore, virtually all the studies tested individual dyes, whereas many foods and diets contain mixtures of dyes (and other ingredients) that might lead to additive or synergistic effects.

In addition to considerations of organ damage, cancer, birth defects, and allergic reactions, mixtures of dyes (and Yellow 5 tested alone) cause hyperactivity and other behavioral problems in some children.

… Because of those toxicological considerations, including carcinogenicity, hypersensitivity reactions, and behavioral effects, food dyes cannot be considered safe. The FDA should ban food dyes, which serve no purpose other than a cosmetic effect, though quirks in the law make it difficult to do so (the law should be amended to make it no more difficult to ban food colorings than other food additives).

In the meantime, companies voluntarily should replace dyes with safer, natural colorings.”

      If you click on the CSPI link you can get everything in more detail. It basically says that after extensive testing, they linked artificial colors to organ damage, cancer, birth defects, hyperactivity, difficulty focusing, allergies, learning disabilities, and this is just the tip of the iceberg! What is even more astonishing is that if you buy food products in the UK, their government will not allow these artificial colors in the food without a WARNING label! Why? for health reasons of course! So why is the FDA allowing it in our food? Why is our country being poisoned?

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          I am not gonna say that in my household,we never eat artificial colors. I can honestly say, we have nothing in the pantry or fridge that has artificial colors! We don’t buy things with them. I love to bake, but have put my colorful cakes on hold till I can figure out a way to naturally color them. (My chocolate cake has always been the favorite anyway. No added color needed lol)

        I do get frustrated a lot, because I get labeled “The mean mama”  or “The over protector” when it comes to birthday parties and children’s gatherings. I don’t want Zoe having the junk, even if it is only once in a while! Zoe is a very active child on her own, without sugar or artificial colors! Anyone who knows her, knows she never sits still. She can focus and is very smart! She has impressed every doctor she has seen with her knowledge! Josh and I noticed a huge change when we allow her to have colors or preservatives. She spends more time in “Time-Out” than actually playing. We have seen first hand what it does to a child! She rarely has colors or preservatives now. Unfortunately, we can not help what people give her when we are not there or when we aren’t looking. (Grandparents always get a pass on spoiling her lol)

     When she was about 1 year old, we started learning more about eating clean. It opened a whole new world for us! Zoe up till this point was on a pretty clean diet already, because we made her baby food. Josh and I however, were not. We thought we were eating healthy. Boy were we wrong!!! I have since been learning ways to cook and serve more clean meals! We do still have slip ups here and there. Zoe has even had some too. :-/ With everything, there is a learning curve. We are certainly learning more and more everyday!

        Until you start really reading labels, you never realize how much toxic stuff is in our food supply!  Did you know that the dyes in your food, are also in your toothpaste, mouthwash, medicines, shampoos, some vitamins,etc. and even worse, the dyes are made from petroleum! Yeah, the same stuff that fuels your car! Horrible to think that if you feed your child the wrong brand of cheese, you could be giving them something you would put in your car’s gas tank! YUCK!!!

   You may be asking yourself, why do they put dyes in foods? They put them there to make our food look more appealing. Basically make-up for food. They believe it will make the food more palatable for everyone. For instance, cheesy chips should have that orange/yellow color that comes off on your hands, so you believe that it is in fact cheese. It is actually nothing more than cheese flavored powder. The chips themselves are flavored too artificially of course! All junk and all horrible for you and your kids!!! Our children are our future, so why are we feeding them the worst trash possible???

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          Some say it is more expensive to eat healthier. Well, it is true in the fact that your rarely see coupons for fresh veggies or fruit. All the sales are always on soda and chips. I will definitely agree with that! However, my family is on a very fixed income and we make it just fine. We never buy junk food. Everything is homemade in our house. That brings me to the next excuse I hear a lot “I don’t have time to cook!” Our meals do not take any longer than 30 to 45 mins to prep and cook. Snacks in this house are fruit, veggies, nuts, or something we concoct. If we want chips, we buy clean corn tortillas and we bake our own. Nothing is ever that time consuming and it keeps us from needlessly eating, as many people do when they get bored. If you have time to sit in front of the computer or Television, then you have time to make something for your family. (It is actually a gesture of love to get off your tush and serve your family)

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Lemon and blueberry sorbet. Made in my kitchen!

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Clean Garlic and Dill chips made fresh!

   There are some companies that make candy, chips, cookies, and several other foods that do not have all the crap in them. You just have to read labels!!!!  My pregnancy go to candy was Mambas. No, they are not healthy, but they also do not have artificial colors. They always got me through my craving for fruity sweet treats! I have recently discovered UnReal brand candy! I haven’t tried them as of yet, but Zoe and I are going to treat ourselves very soon!!! Once we do I will let you know what we think!!! Stacy’s brand snacks have all natural chips! So, as you can see there are options out there! You just have to do your research.

     People need to be aware of what they are actually consuming or having your family consume! I am astonished at how many kids and adults live on Hot Pockets and microwave dinners!!! It is disappointing to know there are parents out there who would rather be at the bar, watching television, or sitting on Facebook than providing a healthy meal for their family. We make cooking a family thing. If Josh is working, then it is just Zoe and I. She is always eager to help! Whatever she helps make, you can guarantee she is gonna eat too!!!! When Josh is home we all three tackle the job! It is fun and it keeps us close as a family! The meals are made with love, which makes them perfect for us!

        We like knowing what we are eating! I hope this opens at least one person’s eyes to what is going on with our food in this country! If they have to put “make-up” on your food, what are they covering up???

Have your children been diagnosed with ADHD or ADD? Have you tried changing their diet as opposed to drugs?

We are always looking for new healthy treats! Do have any all natural snacks that you like to indulge on?

 I hope everyone has a healthy and happy Wednesday!!!

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