If I’m being honest, I didn’t actually know what day it was for most of this week, but I suppose that’s what post-Thanksgiving, being at home in the ‘burbs will do to ya!
I actually shared a video on YouTube this week, in case you’re curious about why I’m in New York for the month of December and want to get a sneak peek of what life is like here! Spoiler alert: it is not super exciting. But that’s why I love it😂 And now…onto Friday Finds!!
Random Gift Ideas for Anyone on Your List – Soooo many good ideas on here!! I feel like I always think of gifts for people when I DON’T have to get them anything and then as soon as the pressure’s on, I got nothin’😅
Okay so I drove to Arizona twice in three weeks…how crazy am I😂
I can’t help it, though! Arizona is absolutely STUNNING and when my best friend asked me if I wanted to meet her for a weekend getaway, I knew we had to go to Civana– a new wellness resort just north of Scottsdale. Picture tall cactuses everywhere, mountains as a backdrop and the most relaxing weekend of all time🌵
It’s super easy to get to – just over 6 hours in the car from LA, and my bff flew into Phoenix, which is just a 40 minute drive from Civana. And while it was nice to have a car, we actually didn’t even leave the resort until it was time to checkout! It truly has everything you could ask for including a cute café with coffee and quick bites, sit-down restaurant, bar, pool and hot tub, full gym, non-stop fitness and wellness classes, incredible spa, and spacious rooms.
Upon arrival, we were greeted with fresh juices and wonderful service – everyone there is unbelievably kind and helpful! We then went up to our rooms where we were brought the sweetest welcome gift, a bottle of wine and charcuterie plate! Full disclosure, we were gifted our stay at Civana, but all opinions are truthful and my own, of course!!😊
We spent the rest of the night indulging, catching up and losing track of time – that always happens when we see each other!
In the morning, we slept in a bit and then grabbed coffee before heading out on a walk in the neighborhood. The temperature in the morning is absolutely perfect and even during the afternoon when it warmed up, we were super comfortable! I think fall/winter must be the perfect time to visit.
When we got back to the hotel, we got smoothies at the café and enjoyed them while relaxing poolside until our Athletic Stretch class at 1pm.
I was SO impressed by the class offerings at Civana – they had everything from Aerial Yoga (which we wanted to take but couldn’t get a spot fast enough!) to Boot Camp and Yoga. Sign up sheets for activities go up every day at noon, so get there asap since those spots fill up veryyy quickly! But what’s nice is that most of these classes are built into the cost of your stay, so you really get a bang for your buck.
After class, we went back to the pool for more Vitamin D and lunch. We enjoyed apps including red pepper hummus and broccamole (their specialty!) plus watermelon margaritas. We really lived it up💃🏻💃🏻
The afternoon brought us to the spa – a brand new part of Civana that is unbelievable and easily the nicest spa I’ve ever been to. All guests have access to the spa whether a treatment is booked or not, but I can tell you that it is SO worth the splurge to get one. I had the best facial of my life and Michelle had a massage!
In addition to those, we were able to sit by the spa’s lap pool, dip into the aquatic wellness pools and hot tub, sit in the sauna and steam room, and chill in the relaxtion rooms. There’s one upstairs that we managed to juuuust catch the gorgeous sunset from! That room is massive with an indoor and outdoor area, plus refreshments.
Dinner was at the more formal restaurant, Terras, where the food was exceptional! We started with a scallop crudo, then I had salmon while Michelle had a polenta lasagna. Dessert was coconut sorbet with a chocolate shell. YUM.
The next morning, we woke up early to grab coffee, take advantage of one more class, Hatha Yoga, and grab smoothies/juices to have while packing up. While our stay was brief, I can honestly say that I left feeling relaxed, rejuvenated and so content!
Civana is the perfect place for a girl’s weekend or mother/daughter getaway and I truly can’t wait to go back!
Have you ever been to Arizona or a wellness resort? Either way, Civana is calling your name😉
You guys I can’t even remember the last time I did a monthly favorites roundup🙈
But we are back in business today, y’all! I’ve actually had a hard time narrowing everything down since I’ve tried and loved so many things in the last few months. From food and drinks to skincare and clothing, there’s SO much out there…I think I may actually just do a separate green beauty post!
Anyway, here are some things I’ve really, truly been loving and enjoying (not including the turtleneck I’m wearing above, aka my actual favorite thing about fall)…😂
Cover Girl Active Python Leggings – So admittedly I did a (very small) campaign with this company on Instagram and had NO idea I was going to fall so in love with their clothes!! I’m truly blown away that these leggings are just $48 in a world of extremely over-priced activewear. The quality is insane, they suck you in but have a thinner material, have the perfect high waist, and feel like a second skin. IN LOVE.
Snacklins – I tried these at the All Things Go Fall Classic back in October and then immediately went home and ordered them from Thrive Market. A whole bag (which is pretty big!) has only 80 calories but the flavor is amazing and they’re so few ingredients!! The perfect snack when you need to munch.
CAP Beauty Matcha and Coconut Butter – I’m going to be real with you, I’m not the biggest matcha snob, I kind of just take what I can get and as long as it’s got a bit of sweetness, I’m here for it…until now. CAP Beauty has raised the freakin’ bar, y’all👏🏻 You can totally taste the difference in quality and then the coconut butter elevates the whole thing to be a rich, delicious and creamy treat. I never want another matcha again!
Trader Joe’s Chocolate Hummus – I got my hands on this ONCE and they’ve been sold out ever since, but I think about it everyday and that is not an exaggeration😂 The nutrition facts on this stuff are pretty dang impressive and it is the closest thing I can find to chocolate frosting without actually being chocolate frosting.
Real Good Foods Cauliflower Bread Breakfast Sandwiches – I try not to have frozen food too often, mostly because I work from home and can make pretty much whatever I want, but sometimes mornings are HECTIC and it’s nice to have options!! I tried these breakfast sammies for the first time and hot damn are they good!! I can’t get over that the bread is paleo/gf/made with cauliflower and the inside with the sausage, egg and cheese was delish. They’re on the small side, but perfect for a quick breakfast or even snack!
Sun Basket – Okay for the first time EVER, I tried a meal prep kit service and it was good. I admit, I haven’t been the most innovative in the kitchen in quite awhile, so it was really cool having someone else come up with the meals! Everything you need (save for oil/salt/pepper) is right in the bag and it’s all super high quality ingredients (organic when possible!). We tried three meals and loved them all!
Buff Bake Protein Cookies – I’m not gonna lie to you, I have had a LOT of protein “cookies” in my day and 90% of the time they’re not foolin’ me with that cookie business. This is the other 10% though because WOW. I tried the Birthday Cake flavor and the Sweet & Salty flavor and both were phenomenal. They’re filled with just a touch of nut butter and are so yummy. There are 4 mini cookies to a pack!
Aaaaaand that is it, my friends! Let me know in the comments if you’ve tried any of these things, want to, or have any other favorites as of late!!
And just like that, October was over and she broke out her Christmas candles…😂
No, but seriously, I don’t know where time went and the fact that 2019 is coming to a close soon(ish) is actually kind of scary/weird. Luckily the holiday season is my FAVORITE and I live for all things Christmas, so there is a lot to look forward to!
I shared this on my Instagram today, but instead of making a list of a bunch of intentions I’ll never accomplish or remember, I want to manifest just a few things for the end of year. It’s always so beyond hectic, especially as someone who works in social media for clients in the retail space (helloooo Black Friday/Holiday sale chaos), so I manifest:
✨ calm and ease ✨ gratitude and joy in the everyday ✨ abundance ✨ contentment in the here and now
Oh hey, y’all! This is apparently my first post of October…oof🙈
I totally dropped the ball on my blog – the past few weeks have been filled with transitions, work, events, catching up with friends, and self-care. Plus, if I’m being totally honest, I’ve been feeling slightly unmotivated, but I know that’s on it’s way out (thank goodness).
I’m actually on a plane to Washington D.C. right now – my boyfriend’s brother has his own music festival called All Things Go and the lineup this weekend is absolutely INSANE. My (potentially all time) favorite band is playing, LANY, and I might even get to meet them…plz pray for me that I don’t a) say anything weird b) start giggling uncontrollably c) pee just a little bit in my pants or d) all of the above😂
Oh! And I uploaded another YouTube video (really hoping to be more consistent over there) – it’s a vlog and it shows what a regular day in my life usually looks like! You can watch it here. Anyway, let’s get into the finds of the week!!
Paleo Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies – I made this “joke” on Instagram yesterday, but I swear I’m turning into a chocolate covered pumpkin…I just can’t get enough of those flavors together! And the texture in these looks PERFECT.
I’m just about to close out a 16 day trip on the east coast and while I’m so sad to leave my family, I’m looking forward to getting back to a sense of normalcy! And my kitchen 🙂
As you know, I flew to NY first, then traveled down the coast to my family’s summer home in North Carolina. It’s my happy place! But things always do get a little hectic as we have company in and out, plus this year was even crazier due to a mixup in our dates, my puppy joining us, and a pretty intense hurricane hitting us mid-week!
My schedule is always a bit odd here, but generally consists of waking up on the earlier side, taking time to enjoy my coffee while getting some work done, hitting the beach around 11:30am, coming back around 3pm to shovel in a bunch of snacks, then kicking it by the pool until dinnertime. As you can see, that isn’t exactly my normal routine, and throw my back injury into the mix for an even less-athletic trip than usual.
That all being said, I do try to keep just a few things the same so that I can prioritize my health in between the lounging, bbq and ice cream cones! Here are 5 things I do every single day to keep my body (and mind) on track. Keep reading for the easy way I start my day and the supplements I make sure to take!
Drink my collagen coffee: If there’s one thing I will *always* make room for in my suitcase, it’s my travel collagen packs! I’ll put one in my coffee at the airport, bring them with me to enjoy with a hotel breakfast, or keep by our coffee pot at home so I don’t forget. I love that it adds a little protein boost first thing in the morning and I swear collagen has done so much for my hair, skin and gut health!
Take my Tru Niagen® supplements: I’ve been taking these consistently every day for almost 2 months now (along with my probiotics!), and I’ve been LOVING them. I truly think Tru Niagen has significantly helped with my energy, and I say this because the summer has been pretty hard on me with my back injury and extreme lack of sleep (hello #puppylife). But that being said, I never once felt like I had an afternoon slump or couldn’t stay up until my normal bedtime around 10:30pm.
Tru Niagen is known as a healthy-aging supplement (which is appealing on its own, since I’m 30 now🙈), but it also just improves health at a cellular level to boost cell function and energy, too! Basically, NAD (or nicotinamide adenine dinucleotide) is a vital resource found in all living cells and as we age, or do things like overeat/drink alcohol, our NAD levels decrease. Tru Niagen helps boost them back up!
Eat a solid breakfast: Like i mentioned, our meals here can be pretty all over the place depending on what time we actually make it to the beach or what groceries are in the house! Since I’m one of those people that is always worried about when their next meal will be, I like to make sure I have a big breakfast with tons of protein and carbs to fuel me through the morning. Some days that’s a bagel sandwich (my favorite bagel place is down here!), other days it’s an avocado toast and egg kind of situation. Whatever I make, I know it needs to be a bit more filling than the usual green smoothies I have when I’m back in LA, and I try not to worry about the calories.
Get moving outside: In previous years, I’ve gone to the community gym in our development here almost every morning, but this year is different because of my back and my dog (who I hate to leave behind!). I did go a few times since I’m allowed to do the elliptical and other light cardio, but otherwise I’ve been walking my dog in the neighborhood and on the beach! It’s a nice way to look at all the pretty houses, get my steps in, and enjoy being outdoors. The best was walking him at night so we could watch the pretty sunsets!
Go to sleep early: I’ve pretty much always been this way on any vacation I take, but here I generally go to bed around 10pm! Since I like to rise early and make the most of the days, going to bed early is a huge priority. It’s also so quiet and peaceful here that I’ve had better night sleeps than usual. That might have something to do with being less stressed, too…
And that’s it! I really have no interest in stressing over my eats and exercise (or lack there of), since I’m just trying to enjoy my time in my favorite place. Sometimes I’ll pack a bunch of snacks and try to stick to a routine, but frankly I just had too much in my suitcase to worry this time! I figure if I take my Tru Niagen supplements and do my best, that’s what counts😊 And that’s pretty much my version of “health” no matter where I am.
What about you – do you stay strict on vacation or let it ride? Are you a snack/supplement packer or do you save that stuff for home? If you’re looking for something easy to take with you that’ll help keep your energy up, something I know we could all use more of (especially during travel), I highly recommend Tru Niagen. Learn more about it here and feel free to drop any questions you may have in the comments!!
Hi from North Carolina, where we are potentially in the line of fire for Hurricane Dorian😅
I’ve been a lil MIA because last week, I flew with my from LA –> NYC and then drove down to NC on Friday, when we somehow got the dates confused and realized our beach house was actually rented until SATURDAY…so we all had to stay in a hotel which wasn’t dog friendly but Ovi isn’t very sneaky because he barks at everything.
The two of us “slept” in my car in the parking lot and finally settled in on Saturday for a wonderful Labor Day Weekend, and that’s the gist of it! Always an adventure😂
Other than that, things have been a bit of a cluster fk because I signed on quite a bit of new work and was thrown into that fire. To say I was stressed would be the understatement of a century, but luckily I’m in my favorite place in the whole world and look out my window at the ocean if I need to be instantly calmed!
It’s crazy to think we’ve already been here almost a week, but we’ve had so much fun and Ovi LOVES it here. He’s such a beach boy and was starting to go into the ocean before they shut the beach for the hurricane!
We’ve been eating all kinds of yummy things (my brother and his friends love to cook!) like a shrimp boil/bake, bbq, and bagels – my FAVE. I’m so looking forward to when my bf gets here on Saturday, I’m just crossing my fingers that his flight isn’t delayed or that we can’t get over the bridge to the mainland because of flooding!
Anyway, I hope you all had an amazing LDW and short work week! Figured I’d share just a few of my fave links before I go:
How to Fall Asleep Anywhere in 5 Minutes – Before I had severe back pain that made it impossible to sleep past 5am and I was exhausted by 9pm each day, I had pretty major sleeping issues😅 A sleep mask seriously changed my life (even though I thought I could NEVER sleep with one) and as for the rest? Definitely going to try those next time I’m strugglin’!
This post is sponsored by Sahale Snacks but all opinions and images are my own, as always.
You probably knew this already, but I’m not one of those people that just eats three meals a day and leaves it at that! 💁🏻
In fact, I’m trying to give myself the nickname Snack Monster J so let me know if you’re on board. I feel like it’s an accurate representation of who I am since snacking is potentially my favorite hobby…if you can call it that. I know eating three solid meals a day works for some people, and that’s awesome! But for me, I just can’t focus and stay energized throughout the day without a lil somethin’ somethin’ in between my meals.
For me, the perfect snack has:
Wholesome Fats: I usually get these from nut butters or nuts on their own! Avocados are great too, but I like to save those for on top of my actual meals. Protein: Yep, nuts cover that front, too. I also love greek yogurt, roasted chickpeas or hummus, string cheese, and energy bars, but I’m a little energy bar-ed out these days. Wholesome Carbs: I know carbs can get a bad rap, but minimally processed carbs can be extremely important for women (otherwise it can mess with our immune system, mood, and thyroid/cortisol production). Some good sources of carbs are oats, sweet potatoes, blueberries and cashews!
Clearly, these flavors are anything but boring and add just a touch of sweetness when I need it most (aka always, but especially after lunch!). I also LOVE sprinkling them on top of yogurt instead of granola and/or nut butter since they do the trick all in one – a little sweet, a little crunch and like I mentioned earlier, and protein!
I’ll have a handful of Sahale Snacks before a workout (since sometimes I workout between breakfast and lunch), before dinner to tide me over while I’m cooking, or even afterwards for dessert. For all of Sahale Snack’s amazing flavors and where to buy, head to their website here. I also love that they source their ingredients thoughtfully, use renewable resources whenever possible, and give back to farmers.
Are you a snacker like me? What does your perfect snack consist of?
This week I have been ALL over the place – I thought Tuesday was Wednesday and Wednesday was Thursday…all I can say is TGIF. This is actually my last Friday being 29 years old since my birthday is Sunday!
I’m super excited to turn 30, is that weird? I just feel like I’m ready to leave my 20’s behind. They were incredible, don’t get me wrong, but I feel solid in who I am, what I’m doing with my life and who I’m surrounded by, so heading into a new chapter just feels right😊
I’m not doing anything too crazy for my bday, just going out to dinner with Alex the night before and spending the day of with some girlfriends by a pool, but I am going back to the east coast next week, so that’ll be the real celebration! Anyway, here’s some light reading for your weekend!
7 Vegetarian Air Fryer Recipes – So I swear I had an air fryer before it was cool and then I was over it by the time everyone else hopped on board. I really need to break it out again and make some of these!