A new week is about to begin..Here are eleven little things YOU can do to be HAPPIER this week. Some of these things I do already, but some I really need to do more.

1. Make time for what you love- life can be pretty hectic but try and take time out of your day to do something you really love. Like dancing, singing, cooking etc.

2. Meditate

3. Practice Yoga

4. Work out- even if it is just something small, you will feel SO much better after

5. Smile- its proven that if you are feeling down and you smile you will feel better

6. Get off your phone (for at least 30 minutes a day)

7. Be mindful in everything you do- How do you feel? Why do you feel that way? Rework your negative thoughts

8. Do something outside that you normally do inside

9. Have a bath- At the end of the day, de-stress in a nice warm bubble bath

10. Call someone and tell them you love them- talking to someone you love can instantly pick you up

11. Don’t compare yourself to others

THERE you have it. Simple ways to make yourself happier. Try em out and see how you feel.

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Flash Fridays: Healthy Chocolate Smoothie

Welcome to flash fridays. Healthy recipes in a FLASH! When those chocolate cravings hit…TRY THIS! This is my go-to smoothie.

All you need for this yummy refined SUGAR free smoothie is:

-2-3 tbsp of CACAO powder  (not coco…sorry for the misleading title, guys), 2 tbsp all natural no sugar added PB or AB, and 1 banana

Blend with some ice and water and ENJOY!!!!

Original smoothie idea taken off of Simple Green Moms (They use cocoa powder and honey- i prefer cacao powder as it is raw and I never add any honey)

Choco smoothie. Picture taken from http://simplegreenmoms.com/skinny-chocolate-shake/

Choco smoothie. Picture taken from http://simplegreenmoms.com/skinny-chocolate-shake/

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Butternut Squash Soup

Hello Everyone,

Today I am sharing a butternut squash soup recipe. This soup is great because it features butternut squash which is super healthy. Also, it makes a lot so you can make it on a sunday and have it for lunch throughout the week.

I found the original recipe off of Whole Foods. Check out the original recipe if you want to see exactly how they make it, because I changed it up a bit.

You will need:

3 carrots (i used multi coloured carrots),1 stalk of celery, 1 onion diced, 4 cups cubed butternut squash fresh or frozen, 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme, 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth,1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt, 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper

DIRECTIONS:

Heat oil in a large soup pot. Add carrot, celery and onion. Cook until vegetables have begun to soften and onion turns translucent, 3 to 4 minutes.

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Stir in butternut squash, thyme, chicken broth, salt and pepper.

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Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until squash is fork-tender, about 30 minutes. Use an immersion blender to purée soup Alternatively, let the soup cool slightly and carefully purée in batches in an upright blender (I used my magic bullet)

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Thats it! Super easy to make.

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Raw Peanut Butter Cups

Hello everyone,

OKAY. If you do not have cacao powder yet you seriously need to go out and buy some. It has taken my healthy eating to a whole new level because it allows me to make delicious desserts that are refined sugar free and still tasty. I think that cutting back on sugar is one of the hardest parts (at least for me) of eating healthy. SO recipes like these are essential.

I have a slight addiction to reese’s peanut butter cups but I think we all know that they are not good for you. These hold their own against them and I am seriously questioning why I did not try this out sooner. The only thing is, I found the coconut oil to be a little strong since I am actually not the biggest fan of coconut. Next time I make these I might try putting in less coconut oil and adding a bit more maple syrup.

The recipe that I am using today was found on: Claire K Creations. Check her website out because she has some great stuff on there!

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INGREDIENTS:

120 ml coconut oil

60 ml cacao powder

2 tbsp PURE maple syrup

Organic peanut butter (a dollop into the middle of each)

1/4 tsp of sea salt 

Instructions (taken directly from Claires website)
  1. Place the coconut oil, cacao, salt and maple syrup in a small jug and whisk together until smooth.
  2. Line 2 12-hole mini-muffin tins with cupcake or chocolate liners.
  3. Pour a little chocolate into each one to fill them about a third of the way.
  4. Put the chocolate in the freezer for 30 minutes to set.
  5. Spoon about half a teaspoon of peanut butter in the middle of each one and if it was firm peanut butter, pour the chocolate over the top to cover it. If the peanut butter was a bit runny you will have to freeze them again until it is firm.
  6. Refrigerate the finished chocolates to set and store in the fridge until serving.

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2014 Favourites

Hello everyone,

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It has been almost a month since my last blog post and I am finally back! The month of December was spent catching up  with family and friends and eating lots of food so I did not have much time to sit down and write a blog post. I have lots of favourite memories from 2014 and lots of favourite products and today I have narrowed them down to share with you. (All of the photos in this post were found on pinterest and google)

FOOD + DRINK

1) CACAO POWDER: This one deserves to be first. Cacao powder literally changed my life. I am a huge sugar addict, especially chocolate, and never found any alternatives to kill my addiction. But, after buying cacao powder and trying out different recipes, I am never looking back.  With cacao powder you can bring the chocolatey flavour to recipes but it is sugar free and filled with antioxidants and minerals (I know dark chocolate is too, but it still has sugar in it so cacao is a great alternative) My fav things to make with cacao powder are: ice cream, fudge,chocolate protein balls and “chocolate” pancakes.

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2) Green Tea: In 2014, I fell in love….with green tea. I think I am a little late to hop of this band wagon, but better late than never.  I don’t drink coffee (call me crazy) and I often need a pick me up in the morning. The brand of green tea that I drink (TAZO) has a small amount of caffeine in it, so it usually does the trick. Not only that, but green tea has ALOT of health benefits (good for digestion, depression, the heart and MANY MORE THINGS). If you did not drink it in 2014, you should start in 2015.

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3) GREEN SMOOTHIES: I LOVED green smoothies in 2014 (and still do). I had one almost everyday because it is a great way to add more fruit and veg to your diet. In mine i would have: SPINACH, MANGO, BANANA, ALMOND MILK, HEMP HEARTS and CHIA SEEDS. It is the best smoothie ever and it gives you lots of energy.

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WORKOUT 

1) XHIT DAILY- I workout from home, and sometimes it can be hard to find motivation. I always turn to youtube to get inspiration and motivation to workout and I stumbled upon XHIT daily in 2014 and have fallen in love with their channel. They have workouts that can be done at home, with minimal equipment and space. Some youtube channels for working out do not have as much selection as XHIT daily so i really recommend this channel to anyone else who workouts from home.

Here is an example of one of their videos:

2) MLACETONESUP- This is an instagram account run by Marissa Lace. For me, this was a favourite in 2014 because she has posts related to working out and clean eating. What sets her apart from some of the other fitness instagram accounts out there, is her motivational posts and realistic goals. You should check her out if you are looking for inspiration. You can also find her on youtube. Check it out down below.

Miscellaneous

1) EAU GOOD WATER BOTTLE: Okay, this one is kind of cheating because I got it at the end of 2014, but i had to include it. My brother got this for me for Christmas and I have been LOVING IT. Basically, it is a water bottle that uses charcoal as a filter. The charcoal, which is used in Japan as a water purifier, helps to reduce chlorine and balance the pH.  I already drink tons of water, but this has helped me drink even more because it REALLY does make tap water taste better. This will help you ditch plastic water bottles!!!

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2) MAGNESIUM: I probably talk about magnesium WAY too much, but i really love it. If you read my blog (or are one of the people that has to listen to me talk about it in person 24/7), you can find a lot more information on it so I will keep this short and sweet: GO OUT AND GET MAGNESIUM SPECIFICALLY IN POWDER FORM.

Click here to see the Magnesium that I use

3) DAMN DELICIOUS: This is a website run by Chungah. It features simple recipes with fresh ingredients and I have been blown away after making her recipes (photo below taken off of Chungah’s website)

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Check it out: here

4) PINTEREST- Again…I am probably really late on this ( I feel like people have been using pinterest for ages) But, my love for pinterest really developed in 2014. It has given me so much inspiration for this blog. I go on there to find healthy recipes and am never let down. Eating healthy can sometimes be a challenge because it is hard to get creative and spice things up. On pinterest you can find such cool and unique recipes and it makes healthy eating FUN and EXCITING.

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4) Don’t sweat the small stuff: This is a book and while it may seem weird to add that in my health and fitness blog, it really relates to mental health and well being. Basically this is a book that is dedicated to helping you not let the little things take over your life. I highly encourage everyone to check out this book because it has really changed my reaction/stress level in certain situations.

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Thanks for reading and stay tuned for some more exciting content in 2015,

Kate xxxx


DIY Christmas Gift- Candy Cane Body Scrub

Hello everyone,

This year i decided to make some of my friends and family homemade gifts. One of the ideas that I found through pinterest was a DIY candy cane body scrub.  Not only is it easy to make but it is also affordable so you do not have to break the bank this Christmas. Keep reading to find out how you can make this festive and cute gift for your friends and family!

All you will need is:

Peppermint essential oil (i added roughly 10-15 drops per bowl)

1 Cup Coconut Oil – you could use olive oil or almond oil

2 Cups Granulated Sugar

Red Food colouring ( I just added drops of it until I got my desired colour)

1 Mason Jar

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Step one- separate half the sugar into one bowl and the other half into another bowl

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Step two- pour 1/2 the oil into one bowl of sugar and the other 1/2 of the oil into the second bowl of sugar

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Step three- Mix the oil into the sugar until it is the consistency of wet sand (repeat with the second bowl as well)

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Step four- add red food colouring into ONE bowl of sugar- at this time, also add in about 10-15 drops of the peppermint oil into BOTH bowls of sugar

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Step five- Scoop a spoonful of the red sugar into the mason jar. Then flatten (I used a wine cork). Then, scoop the white in and flatten. Repeat this process. 

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When you are finished layering you can then decorate/customize the jars with whatever you like!

THATS IT! See, I told you it was easy. This is a really fun gift to make because after you have finished making the body scrub you can customize the mason jar to make it special. ALSO, I tried the scrub on myself and it left my skin so soft (and i smelled like a candy cane for the rest of the day)

Happy holidays everyone,

Kate xxxx


Healthy Pancakes

Hello everyone,

Another recipe (taken off pinterest, of course) that I have whipped up in the kitchen that I cannot believe is healthy because they are oh so good. Better than “normal” pancakes….. (if I dare say it)

All you will need is:

2 eggs

1/2 cup of oats 

1/4 tsp of cinnamon 

1 banana 

1/4 cup of unsweetened apple sauce

TOPPINGS: Pure maple syrup, peanut butter, raspberries (this is what i used on mine, but you can put whatever you want on top)

Ingredients you will need

Ingredients you will need

*I have made these before and JUST used eggs and banana and it works but i find this recipe makes better pancakes (fluffier)*

Directions:

1) Blend oats in blender

2) Once blended, add all other ingredients in and blend until combined into a batter

3) Cook batter on buttered pan (medium to medium high heat)

Seriously look at these. Go make them now.

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Apple Pie Oatmeal

Hey everyone,

There is snow on the ground, and its freezing cold outside. Which means, there is no better time to wake up and have something warm and festive for breakfast. If you are busy in the morning and do not really have time to make this, you can make some overnight apple pie oats. Check out a recipe for that here: http://realfoodrealdeals.com/2013/09/09/apple-pie-overnight-oats/

I found a super simple recipe for apple pie oatmeal online. Fine the original recipe: HERE

For mine I used:

2 apples (because i LOVE apples)

1 cup water

1 cup quick cook oats

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1 tbsp cinnamon (I added 1 tbsp because i adore cinnamon but add less if you are less of a fan)

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DIRECTIONS:

1) Bring water to a boil

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2) Add in oats, apple, cinnamon and nutmeg, and reduce to a simmer

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3) Cook for 2-3 minutes (stirring occasionally)

ADDITONAL ADD ONS: Maple syrup, brown sugar, raisins, nuts

On top of mine I added some pure maple syrup, more cinnamon and some more apples and it WAS SO GOOD. It made me feel like getting into my christmas jammies 🙂

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ENJOY,

Kate xxxx


Baked Zucchini Fries

Hey everyone,

Today I made some zucchini fries in honour of my massive fry addiction (but these ones are healthy and guilt free). They are super easy to make, and it makes for a great side with dinner/lunch!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 medium sized zucchini
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp of flour (you could use almond flour)
  • 1 1/2 C panko bread crumbs
  • 2 T Parmesan cheese
  • Salt and pepper to taste

*For dipping sauce, i used a bit of homemade pasta sauce that I had in the fridge*

DIRECTIONS:

Cut zucchini into thin fry pieces. In a plastic baggy, mix zucchini and flour (until the zucchini is evenly coated). In a bowl, combine the panko bread crumbs and parmesan cheese. Stir to combine. In a second bowl, whisk a raw egg with about 1 Tbsp of water until smooth.

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One by one, dip the pieces of zucchini into the egg, then the bread crumbs. Place on baking sheet. Put in oven at 425 degrees for 10-15 minutes. Make sure you monitor them, and once they start to brown, take them out (even if it has not been the full fifteen minutes)

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NOTE: I just used one zucchini because I was making it just for me, but if you are wanting to make for more than one person just use more zucchini (and adjust breadcrumb portions off that- i.e if you are using more zucchini you will need more breadcrumbs)

Happy eating,

Kate xxx


DIY Body Scrub

Hello everyone,

Today I am sharing a recipe for a DIY body scrub.

If you look at the products that you use in your shower right now, you will see that there are tons of ingredients/chemicals in them.  So, it really is not the best for your body. In the summer, I started making my own body scrubs because it is SO easy to make, saves money and is GREAT for your skin. I have seen body scrubs that cost around sixty dollars in store, and embarrassingly, I have purchased them.

Making your own scrubs is a great alternative to store bought scrubs because it is great for your skin and often, uses ingredients that you might already have around the house.

So, for my brown sugar body scrub you will need:

1/4 cup of coconut oil (If you don’t have it on hand, use olive oil)

1 cup of brown sugar

1 tsp of cinnamon

A dash of vanilla extract

2 tablespoons of honey

Ingredients that you will need

Ingredients that you will need

DIRECTIONS: Melt coconut oil (if you are using olive oil you don’t need to do this), then in a bowl combine ALL of the ingredients and mix together until there are no longer large lumps (Yep, it is that easy)

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This scrub leaves your body feeling SOOO smooth, and you can eat some too 😉

Enjoy,

Kate xxx