Saturday, December 31, 2011
Friday, December 30, 2011
Thursday, December 29, 2011
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Tuesday, December 27, 2011
- 1 can (20-ounce) crushed pineapple in heavy syrup
- 1 cup fresh lemon juice
- 1 cup maraschino cherry juice
- 1 cup dark rum
- 1/2 cup brandy
- 1 bottle (750 ml) chilled inexpensive brut Champagne
Monday, December 26, 2011
Monday, November 7, 2011
Sunday, November 6, 2011
It's officially here - the day I am getting certified to be a TurboKick instructor! Am I nervous? Yes. Why? Because I can't seem to figure out which foot is my left and which is my right. Some people have problems dancing. My two left feet appear when I'm TurboKicking! Here's hoping to after 8 straight hours of training that I will get this DOWN! Jab. Cross. Hook. Uppercut!
Saturday, November 5, 2011
Friday, November 4, 2011
It's so true! Ladies - don't be afraid to lift weights! You will NOT bulk up unless you are taking some crazy supplements. Muscle is beautiful so lift, lift, lift. And I'm not talking about those 2 pound paperweights we all like to turn to. Go for double digit weights and build those gorgeous lean muscles!
Thursday, November 3, 2011
I love this Fall mantle decorating idea. And at the start of the upcoming holiday season, it's a great reminder for us to show our appreciation and express our gratitude for the things that we've been blessed with. What are you thankful for?
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Mmmm.... I love sweet potatoes. And I love fries. The two put together are a slice of Heaven! And this recipe just sounds too good not to try...
- 2 pounds small sweet potatoes (about 5), peeled and cut lengthwise into 1-inch wedges
- 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
- Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup
- 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- Sea salt and freshly grated nutmeg, to taste, for serving
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Toss the sweet potatoes on a large, foil-lined rimmed baking sheet with the oil; season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Roast the potatoes for 20 minutes.
2. Remove the pan from the oven and toss the potatoes with the syrup.
3. Back in the oven, roast, tossing twice, until the potatoes are beginning to brown and are tender, about 15 minutes more. To serve, sprinkle warm potatoes with freshly grated lemon zest, sea salt, and nutmeg to taste.
Thank you FoodNetwork.com for this yummy Fall side dish.
Monday, October 31, 2011
Sunday, October 30, 2011
Saturday, October 29, 2011
Friday, October 28, 2011
Do you need an energy boost? Try this stretch. It calms the mind, relieves stress, stretches the spine, shoulders, hamstrings, and back;, stimulates the kidneys and adrenal glands, improves digestion, and reduces fatigue.
1. Sit with your legs extended straight in front of you, feet parallel with toes pointing up. Press the back of your legs into the floor.
2. Inhale deeply and lift through the upper body. With your spine straight and shoulders back, pull the navel in slightly toward the spine, creating space in the abdomen. Exhale, release, and lean forward, bending from the hip, not the waist.
3. Fold forward only as far as you can (keep your knees bent if that's more comfortable). With each inhalation, lift and lengthen the front torso slightly; if you feel able to go further, release a little more fully into the bend on an exhale. Try not to crunch; maintain length through the spine.
4. Hold for a few breaths, allowing your body to open up. Direct your breath toward the kidneys, breathing deep into the lower back. Then inhale and sit up slowly, lifting your torso away from the thighs until your back is straight. Repeat 2 to 3 times.
Thursday, October 27, 2011
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
As I've mentioned over and over again, Autumn is my favorite time of year. I love the scents, the crisp air, the colors, the feel of cozy clothes and throw blankets and the comforting feeling the season seems to bring.
While browsing MarthaStewart.com I came across this really neat, and really easy, do it yourself pumpkin incense burner. Hello yummy smell of pumpkin, cinnamon and FALL!
Here's how to make it:
Cut off the pumpkin's top and scrape out the innards; carve round vents with an apple corer. Rub cinnamon or pumpkin-pie spices onto the lid, or push cloves into it. With a lighted tealight candle inside, the pumpkin will give off a lovely fragrance for about six hours.
I wish I could think of things like this. Thank goodness we have Martha!
Tuesday, October 25, 2011
- 1 (2-pound) sugar pumpkin, trimmed, quartered, and cleaned
- 1 stick (1/2 cup) plus 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
- 10 fresh sage leaves
- 1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
- Pasta Dough
- All-purpose flour, for dusting
- 1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
2. Place pumpkin in a roasting pan; rub cut sides with 3 tablespoons butter and place one sage leaf in the cavity of each pumpkin quarter; season with salt and pepper. Cover pan with parchment paper-lined aluminum foil. Transfer to oven and bake until pumpkin flesh is easily pierced with a fork, about 1 hour.
3. Remove from oven and discard foil. Let pumpkin stand until cool enough to handle. Discard sage leaves. Using a spoon, scoop out pumpkin flesh and transfer to a large bowl; discard skin. Using a fork, mash pumpkin until smooth; add mascarpone, Parmesan, and olive oil. Season with salt and pepper; stir to combine. Set filling aside.
4. Divide pasta dough into 4 equal pieces. Set the rollers of a hand-crank or electric pasta machine at their widest opening. Working with one piece at a time (and keeping the remaining pieces covered with plastic wrap), generously flour dough and run it through the pasta machine. Dust dough again with flour and fold into thirds like a letter. Run dough through pasta machine again. Repeat process 2 to 3 more times until smooth.
5. Now change the rollers of the pasta machine to the next decreasing setting, and roll out the dough once without folding. Keep rolling the sheet through the machine on decreasing settings until you have rolled it through the second to last setting. Transfer pasta to a lightly floured baking sheet and cover with plastic wrap. Repeat process with remaining pieces of dough.
6. Working with one pasta sheet at a time, cut into 3-by 3-inch squares. Place 1 tablespoon pumpkin filling toward the middle of the top half of each square. Using a wet pastry brush, brush edges of pasta to moisten. Fold bottom half of square over filling. Press air out and pinch dough together, working from the middle outwards to remove any air pockets. Seal edges with the ends of the tines of a fork; fold edges over filling and pinch together. Transfer cappellacci to a lightly floured baking sheet as you work.
7. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; generously salt water and return to a boil. Working in batches, add cappellacci; cook until tender, 5 to 6 minutes. Drain, reserving 1/4 cup pasta cooking liquid.
8. Meanwhile, tear remaining 6 sage leaves into small pieces. Heat 4 tablespoons butter and torn sage in a large skillet over medium high heat until aromatic and browned, taking care not to burn, about 3 minutes.
9. Reduce heat to low and add reserved pasta cooking liquid to skillet along with remaining 4 tablespoons butter; cook, stirring, until butter is emulsified. Add cappellacci to skillet and gently stir to combine. Serve in warmed bowls sprinkled with Pecorino Romano.
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Tuesday, October 18, 2011
In case you don't know, my mother is a fabulous food photographer (SaloPhotography) and she brought to my attention that October is National Cheese Month. Well, I love October and I love cheese, so THAT must be why Autumn is my favorite time of year :)
In keeping with the cheese theme, I thought you would enjoy this yummy twist on mac 'n cheese:
- 1 pound purchased or homemade gnocchi
- 2 Tablespoons butter
- 2 teaspoons garlic, finely chopped
- 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
- 3/4 cup milk
- 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
- 1/4 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
- 1/4 cup shredded Fontina cheese
- Salt and white pepper to taste
- 1/3 cup shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano
- Basil leaves for garnish, optional
1. Preheat oven to 375. Prepare gnocchi according to package directions. Drain and place gnocchi in a single-layer in a 1-1/2 quart shallow baking dish that has been sprayed with nonstick spray.
2. Melt butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Stir in garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Whisk in flour until it thickens and bubbles, then whisk in milk and Dijon. Continue to whisk mixture and cook until slightly thickened, about 3-5 minutes.
3. Combine Gruyere and Fontina, then add by the handful to milk mixture, stirring until melted before adding the next handful. Once all cheese is melted, season sauce with salt and pepper.
4. Pour sauce over gnocchi and sprinkle with Parmigiano-Reggiano over top. Bake gnocchi until they puff and the cheese is golden and bubbly, about 25 minutes. Let gnocchi rest for 5 minutes before serving.
Now I can't say this is a lite recipe like you're used to me posting, but hey, we all need some good comfort-food every now and then, don't you agree?!
Monday, October 17, 2011
Saturday, October 15, 2011
Friday, October 14, 2011
It's coming! Chalene's book is coming! And she's giving it away for FREE! Yes, I said it. FREE! Are you as excited as I am?!
Join me on 11.11.11 for the PUSH PARTY to reserve your FREE copy! Here's how to register:
Go to http://www.ChaleneJohnson.com/pushjumpstart
Team Name: Fit For Life!
Team Leader: Taryn Talbott
Chalene is going to PUSH us to reach our goals and it all begins on 11.11.11.
I don't know about you, but I'm certainly all for a banging body and living the life I deserve! :)
Monday, October 10, 2011
I apologize for my mia status last week my dear friends and followers. I had a migraine that was kicking my booty and severely hindering my creative thinking. It's still pounding in my head, but I'm not going to let it get me down this week.
I found this quote and photo a couple weeks ago and saved it to my desktop knowing I would be sharing it with you on a motivational Monday.
Enjoy your day. Have a great week. And tackle that thing that you've been dreading. You can do it!
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
- 2 tablespoons apple-cider, balsamic or red-wine vinegar
- 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup crumbled blue cheese
- 1/4 cup candied walnuts, roughly chopped
- 1 shallot, minced
- 6-8 medium-size beets, tops removed
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- A few handfuls of torn arugula leaves
1. Heat oven to 400 degrees F.
2. Wrap beets individually in foil, twisting the ends, and place on a baking sheet. Bake 60 to 90 minutes, or until a fork easily pierces the flesh.
3. In a small bowl, combine the shallot, vinegar and a pinch of salt and pepper. Let stand for at least 5 minutes; whisk in olive oil to make a vinaigrette.
4. Remove beets from oven and unwrap them. When cool enough to handle, peel off the skin with your fingers or a small knife. Slice into wedges or 1/3-inch-thick rounds and place in a serving bowl.
5. Add vinaigrette and toss to coat evenly. Top with cheese, walnuts and arugula leaves.
Monday, October 3, 2011
Where are you? Inside or outside of the circle?
Now let me rephrase the question - where do you want to be? Step outside of your comfort zone. When you do, that's when you will experience the good stuff that life has to offer.
Go on, get a little uncomfortable!
Sunday, October 2, 2011
Saturday, October 1, 2011
My newest little obsession: Dior Airflash Foundation
Oh. My. Gosh. This little can of spray foundation is powerful and fabulous! Hello feeling like a runway model...
Applying foundation has never been easier for me and the coverage is fantastic. Plus, my skin feels like it can BREATHE which is something I have yet to find with other foundations.
Now I just need to find another way to earn money so I can afford my new expensive obsession. Perhaps the Dior counter is hiring??? :)
Friday, September 30, 2011
1. Lie faceup on the floor with your knees bent, feet flat, hands on floor by hips.
2. Lift hips off the floor and tuck left foot under right thigh, left knee pointing left.
3. Extend left leg out diagonally and repeat from step 2.
Do 8-10 reps on each leg. This killer move targets your abs, obliques, butt, quads, hamstrings and calves.
Thank you Fitness magazine for this fit tip!
Thursday, September 29, 2011
A friend of mine sent me the following link this week so I could see how I'd survive real life only making $9/hr. Let's just say it took me two times of playing the game to make it through the month and on the second time, I wasn't left with much at the end.
This game really got me thinking about how thankful I am that for me, it was only a game. There are so many people, especially during this economic downturn, who actually have to deal with the scenarios that are presented in the game and unfortunately, they don't have the satisfaction of saying it's just a game.
We always say we wish we had this or we wish we had that, but how often do we stop and say I'm thankful I have this or I'm thankful I have that? Today, I am saying thank you for all of the blessings I have been given. I am grateful that I am not faced with some of the difficult situations that were presented to me in the game. My heart truly goes out to those who are struggling to survive on minimum wage. I know it's not easy.
Wednesday, September 28, 2011
I wish that I could escape somewhere else every Autumn so I could truly enjoy my favorite season. I'd sit inside with the windows open, letting the crisp air in, with a hot cup of apple cider and a cozy throw blanket admiring the beautiful leaves. Doesn't that just sound so perfect?
Maybe next year I can travel to the East Coast to visit my Aunt, Uncle and little cousins. That would be such a wish come true. I've always wanted to walk on pathways covered with fallen leaves while bundled up admiring the natural change nature goes through every year.
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
It's finally my favorite time of year and I now have an excuse to make "comfort food," my favorite being homemade soups. I found this recipe for pumpkin soup that is only 241 calories per serving. Hope it's as yummy as it sounds!
- 2 slices chopped bacon
- 1 yellow onion - chopped
- 1 29-oz can pumpkin
- 3-1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
- 1 cup applesauce
- 2 tsp. ground ginger
- 1/2 cup light sour cream
1. Saute bacon and onion. Drain fat.
2. Add remaining ingredients. Add salt and pepper to taste. Bring to a boil, then simmer.
3. Add sour cream, stir and enjoy!
Monday, September 26, 2011
Sunday, September 25, 2011
Saturday, September 24, 2011
Now that we are officially enjoying Autumn, are you thinking of changing your hair color? Many women do. Here are a few tips complements of Fitness magazine for DIY hair color:
Stay in the same color family. If you are wanting to go to light blond from cherry red, forget it. "At-home kits don't have the strength to change hair that much," says Jason Backe, master colorist at Ted Gibson Salon in New York City. Pick a kit that's within one to two shades of your natural tone and look for one that's free of potentially damaging ammonia.
In between color procedures, treat your strands with a glossing treatment to give your hair a shiny, mirror-like effect.
Be sure to set a timer once you have applied the color product. A minute or two can make all the difference when it comes to coloring your hair.
And of course, if you're afraid of getting potentially scary at-home results, see a professional stylist. While it may not be the cheaper way to go, it may save your sanity :)
Friday, September 23, 2011
I have to be honest, I was really surprised to see what made the list for California: In-N-Out's Double Double. I always thought because In-N-Out uses fresh ingredients that it would fall below other fast food chains on a list like this, but apparently that isn't true at all. The fat content in a Double Double is extremely high and has definitely made me think differently about ordering one in the future.
What is your state known for?
Thursday, September 22, 2011
Wednesday, September 21, 2011
I think I mentioned to you a while back that I recently started subbing Yoga classes. It's a passion of mine and I absolutely love teaching mind body classes to others who need a little Zen in their lives.
Well, a few days ago, a wish of mine came true - I am now teaching Yoga on a regular weekly basis at 24 Hour Fitness.
If you haven't tried a Yoga class yet, you really need to. Don't be afraid of the typical Yoga cliché that you so often hear about - that it's just for hippies or that you have to chant while breathing in intoxicating incense fumes. It's not true. While some Yogis enjoy that form of Yoga practice, not all classes are that way. I personally would like to take a class in a setting like that to try it, but it's not the style I teach, and it's not what you typically see in mainstream group fitness settings.
Everybody needs a good stretch and a stress release. Perhaps Yoga is the very thing you've been longing for and you just haven't realized it. Give it a try. You may just fall in love!
Tuesday, September 20, 2011
Replacing everyday salad greens with fresh leaf spinach kicks up this salad's nutritional value. Tasty turkey breast meat adds protein, and orange juice gives a tangy kick to the dressing. You might even call this a salad for people who don't really like salad!
- 8 oz. washed leaf spinach, stems removed
- 1 small red onion, peeled and finely sliced
- 1 cup sliced fresh mushrooms
- 12 oz. cooked turkey breast meat, cut into bite-sized pieces
- 4 Tbsp. orange juice
- 2 Tbsp. red wine vinegar
- 2 tsp. olive oil
- 1 or 2 small garlic cloves, minced
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
1. Whisk together all dressing ingredients and set aside.
2. In a large bowl, combine all salad ingredients. Drizzle dressing on top and toss gently.
Thank you to Beachbody for this tasty, low-cal recipe. For more recipes like this one, please visit www.FitCoachTaryn.com
Monday, September 19, 2011
"There is more to life than increasing its speed." - Mahatma Ghandi
I don't know about you, but I am extremely guilty of saying "I wish it was Friday" or on a week day saying "I wish it was 6pm" but really, why do I want to speed up this life of mine? We only get one life and we need to savor every moment of it.
Take time to enjoy life's little moments. They come and go so quickly and before you know it, you'll be wishing you had more of them.
Thursday, September 15, 2011
I am so excited! I found an incredible deal online - $29 for 10 hot yoga sessions. I purchased the package and I can't wait to try it out. I have been wanting to try hot yoga for quite some time, but have always been afraid of "over heating."
Everyone I know who does this yoga practice raves about it, so with a killer deal like the one I found, I couldn't resist giving it a go.
Thank you Screaming Daily Deals for this fabulous package deal!
Wednesday, September 14, 2011
Tuesday, September 13, 2011
- 2 cups brown rice
- 1 or 2 bags pre-washed greens
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
- 1 large yellow pepper, chopped
- 3 large garlic cloves, chopped
- 1 cup sun-dried tomatoes, sliced
- 1 cup fresh basil leaves, chopped
- 1 can artichoke hears (in brine - not oil), rinsed and drained
- 1/2 cup pine nuts
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 5 small, chopped black olives for garnish
- 1 tbsp. parmesan cheese, grated
Monday, September 12, 2011
Sunday, September 11, 2011
It's hard to believe that the tragic events of September 11th happened 10 years ago today. I still remember that day as if it was yesterday. Most of us do...
My heart goes out to all of the families who lost loved ones when the towers fell and to all of the families who have loved ones who continue fighting for our country. To all the soldiers in all branches of the U.S. military who are so brave and strong and who fight for us each day - I thank you.
I know my words of thanks will never truly express all the gratitude I have for you, both soldiers and families of soldiers. I can't even imagine what a day is like in your shoes. It takes a special person to do what you do. To live each day in fear, yet you carry on with such strength. It's truly honorable.
God bless you and God bless the USA.
Imagine there's no countries
It isn't hard to do
Nothing to kill or die for
And no religion, too
Imagine all the people
Living life in peace
You, you may say I'm a dreamer
But I'm not the only one
I hope someday you will join us
And the world will be as one
Imagine no possessions