Thursday, March 31, 2011

National Nutrition Month Games

    For the last day of National Nutrition Month I'm adding links for some quizzes and games from the National Nutrition Month website.  Have fun!

Rate your Plate game:  click here

Nutrition Sudoku:  click here 

Word Search:  click here

For fun Fad Diet Timeline:  click here  (click on the date to see the Fad Diet of that time)

For kids:

Nutrition Sudoku:  click here

Word Search:  click here

Hopefully by now, if we've been following some healthier food choices this month we have now made a good habit of eating right.  Let's try to keep up with National Nutrition Month all year long.   Eating healthy is a habit we want to keep up with each day for our families, friends and for ourselves.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Pretty In Pink Facial

     This recipe is an all natural recipe for your face.  It comes from the show "The Doctors".  These homemade remedies are so fun and so economical.  Don't forget, since this is all natural if you have some left over after putting it on your face you can eat the rest, it tastes great.

    The Pretty in Pink facial helps cleanse, exfoliate, moisturize and fortify your skin, leaving your
face feeling young and supple. The facial uses all-natural ingredients and costs less than $5!
• Guava fruit
• Plain yogurt
• Chilled grapefruit slices
• Fresh-squeezed grapefruit juice
• Wash face with warm water
• Cut one ripe guava fruit into halves
• Remove seeds and cut the fruit into small pieces (Do not peel off the skin)
• Mix the guava and yogurt together to make a paste
• Using your fingers, rub the paste on your face in a circular motion
• Leave paste on for 10 minutes, then rinse the face with a warm cloth
• Dip a cotton ball in the grapefruit juice and lightly dab all over the face
• Do not rinse
• Let face dry and apply regular moisturizer
How it Works:
Guava fruit is an excellent natural source of astringents, agents responsible for shrinking tissues
and dissolving oil. Guava is also a good source of potassium and vitamins A, B and C, which help
keep skin glowing, fresh and wrinkle-free.
Grapefruits are loaded with citric acid, an alpha-hydroxy acid, which helps exfoliate and loosen
dead skin cells and polish dry skin. Grapefruits are also a natural astringent, which helps combat
oily skin.
Plain low-fat or whole-milk yogurt contains lactic acid, which softens the skin, reduces wrinkles
and helps hydrate dry areas.

  View the video to see this recipe in action. Note you can mute my blog music on the right hand side below before watching this video.

Here is the link to view the video:  click here

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Tip of the Week - Pantry Items You Can Use for Your Beauty Routines

     There are some products we have in our pantry that we can also use for our beauty routines.  It can be very cost efficient and they are effective as well.  I've tried a couple of these and they really work.

     One pantry item most of us have on hand is baking soda.  You can add some baking soda to your regular cleanser and get an exfoliating effect.  It will leave your face feeling very smooth.  It also helps neutralize your skins PH balance.  Another item is apple cider vinegar.  It promotes blood circulation and is also an antiseptic. You can dilute it with some water and rub it on your face with a cotton ball after cleansing in the morning and evening.  For a good facial you can mash an avocado and put it on your face for 15 minutes then rinse it off.  It has natural emollients that will make your skin feel conditioned.  Plain yogurt is another good facial.  It contains alpha-hydroxy acids which are great for fine wrinkles and it's also rich in the B-complex vitamins which promote skin healing.  After you clean your face you can leave this on for 15 minutes then rinse off.

     Trying items you have at home can help save you money and they work.  So if you find yourself running out of your favorite scrub or facial product try an at home remedy until you can restock. 

Friday, March 25, 2011

Asparagus Whole-Wheat Pasta With Lemon Dressing

     I'm adding another great tasting recipe.  I had this one for lunch yesterday.  I cut the recipe in half for one serving.  Instead of sun dried tomatoes I used fresh cherry tomatoes and instead of Feta cheese I used some shredded Colby Jack.  It's a healthy meal with protein and fiber.  If you make the full recipe you can eat one portion for lunch and use the other half as a side for dinner.  Or you can eat lunch with a friend and impress them with your cooking skills.  This is another good recipe to try for National Nutrition Month.  It has a mix of color and tastes great.  I got this recipe from my latest edition of Self Magazine, the April 2011 issue. 

Asparagus Whole-Wheat Pasta With Lemon Dressing

Asparagus is in season (that is, cheap). Our testers, aka your trusty SELF staffers, raved about this delish dish from vegetarian chef Emily Malone of Alexandria, Virginia.

Serves 2


  • 1 lb fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into bite-size pieces
  • 4 oz whole-wheat penne
  • 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 cup fresh basil, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon grated lemon zest
  • 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1/4 cup crumbled feta


  1. Boil asparagus until tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove asparagus from water with a slotted spoon. Add pasta to boiling water and cook as directed on package. Drain pasta and add to a bowl with all remaining ingredients except cheese. Stir to combine. Portion into 2 bowls and top with feta. Salt to taste. (Craving a creamier, richer taste? Swap goat cheese for feta.)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Updates on Jason Pure and Natural Hand and Body Lotion and Burt's Bees

     I went to the store to buy my Jason Pure and Natural Hand and Body Lotion Aloe Vera but it was out of stock so I purchased a new scent, Vanilla.  I love this one too.  It has vanilla and coconut milk and smells like a tropical blend.  It works just like the Aloe Vera scent and has the same consistency and does not contain any harsh chemicals either.  I will probably wear this one during the summer months.  If you like the tropical scent, you will enjoy this hand and body lotion.
     I also tried a new Burt’s Bees Lip Balm.  This one is the Mango Butter flavor and also 100% natural.  It’s a good one too.  It is a sweeter taste than the Honey Lip Balm and moisturizes just as well.  My husband told me when he kissed me that my lips tasted like cherries.  It was neat that he noticed.  I also tried the Burt’s Bees Exfoliating Body Bar and I liked this one.  It made my skin feel smooth and is 99.9% natural.  It contains jojoba beads and royal jelly.  The fragrance is the portion that isn’t natural but it isn’t an overwhelming scent and it is also pleasant for both men and women.
     All three of these items are great and I would purchase them again and recommend them to others.

Burt's Bees Exfoliating Soap and Burt's Bees Lip Balm

Jason Vanilla Lotion

A Tasty Recipe for National Nutrition Month

    Today I'm attaching a recipe from the show Spice Goddess on The Cooking Channel.  It's an easy and tasty dish that can be made quickly.  It's a recipe called Cauliflower with Sweet Potatoes.  The host of the show is Bal Arneson.

    Cauliflower is low in saturated fat, very low in cholesterol and a good source of protein, potassium and dietary fiber.  Sweet Potatoes are also low in cholesterol and saturated fat and also a good source of vitamin A, potassium and dietary fiber.   This is a good recipe for something different to try instead of baking a sweet potato or boiling cauliflower.  And since it's easy to make and great tasting you might try it again sometime. Enjoy!

Cauliflower with Sweet Potatoes

Recipe courtesy Bal Arneson
Show: Spice Goddess Episode: Indian Main Dishes
Prep:5 min
Inactive Prep:--
Cook:30 min
YIELD:4 servings


  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 tablespoon coriander seeds
  • 1 tablespoon cumin seeds
  • 1 teaspoon turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tomato, chopped
  • 1 large sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks
  • 1 small head cauliflower, cut into bite-size florets


Place the oil in a large nonstick skillet and heat over medium-high heat. Add the onion and ginger and cook for 4 minutes. Stir in the coriander seeds, cumin seeds, turmeric, and salt and toast for 15 seconds and then add the tomatoes and sweet potatoes, and cook until they are tender, about 12 to 15 minutes. Add the cauliflower and stir well to combine. Place a tight fitting lid on the pan and cook until the cauliflower is crisp- tender, about 5 to 8 minutes.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Today's Featured Product Wen Cleansing Conditioner By Chaz Dean

     I began using Wen Cleansing Conditioner over a year ago.  At first I was very skeptical that you could actually get your hair clean with a conditioner and no shampoo.  But I wanted to try it because these conditioners are made with natural ingredients and do not contain any SLS's (Sodium Laurel Sulfates) or other harsh chemicals that many shampoos and conditioners on the shelves contain.  I was using a baby shampoo before thinking that was better than other shampoos, but if you read the labels, you will see many chemicals listed even on some of the baby shampoos. So I had to try something with natural ingredients to see if it would work.  I had to play with the amounts to use because in the beginning I may have used too many pumps as it seemed to weigh my hair down.  But I've since figured out the exact number of pumps to use and I also thoroughly rinse as my final step.  I was using a combination of the Sweet Almond Mint, Cucumber Aloe and Lavender cleansing conditioners as my hair cleansing routine but recently switched over to using an equal amount of Sweet Almond Mint and Pomegranate.  Pomegranate is a newer "flavor" option and I love this combination of scents.  My hair is a little longer than my shoulders and for my length of hair my routine is listed below.

Sweet Almond Mint and Pomegranate.
Step one:  Wet my hair thoroughly for about 1 minute
Step two:  Add 8 pumps of Sweet Almond Mint to the front, top and sides of my hair and work it in then I add 8 more pumps of Pomegranate to the rest of my hair and work it through.
Step three:  I add a little bit of water to help massage it through and I use my shower comb to get the product through to the ends.  I then rinse it for about a minute and add the same amount of Sweet Almond Mint and Pomegranate with the same process only this time I leave it in my hair for about 5 minutes.
 Step four:  I rinse my hair for 2 minutes (you can really feel how soft your hair is when you are rinsing the product out, I've never had my hair feel this smooth using regular shampoos).
Then I style as usual which includes blow drying and sometimes I will use hot rollers, or I will let my hair stay straight after I blow dry.  Either style looks good.   With Wen I don't end up with any dry ends or fly a ways.

    Since I've been using Wen Cleansing Conditioners, I can usually go about 2 to 3 days before having to wash my hair again and it still looks nice.  When I was using regular shampoos I had to wash my hair every day or at least every other day before the style started to come out of my hair. This product has really made a difference in the texture of my hair and I like that my hair feels clean for a long period of time.  The first time I used these conditioners I literally felt the difference while I was rinsing my hair.

Cucumber Aloe, Lavender and Sweet Almond Mint.
     On the Wen website you can see some before and after pictures of different types of hair (and there is an option to see the pictures rotate so you can see the back of their hairstyles as well) so you can see how it would make a difference on your type of hair.  They also list the ingredients and show steps of how to use the product.  I'm happy I made this transition because I like using a natural product that really works.  It made me believe you don't need a bubbly shampoo to get clean, beautiful looking hair.   You can visit the site here:  Wen by Chaz Dean.  I've ordered my conditioners on and I've also seen them on as well. And of course you can order them from the Wen website as well.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Tip of the Week - Bethenny Frankel Yoga Video Clip

     Today I'm adding a video clip with some yoga exercises.  This is from Bethenny Frankel's video.  Bethenny is a natural food chef and author.  She has written two books and will soon be releasing two more.  Her first book Naturally Thin: Unleash Your SkinnyGirl and Free Yourself from a Lifetime of Dieting was released in March 2009 and her second book   The SkinnyGirl Dish: Easy Recipes for Your Naturally Thin Life was published in December 2009.  Bethenny shares some of her healthy recipes on her website at:  Bethenny

     Note:  You can mute my blog music on the right hand side before playing the video.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Update on Green Smoothie

     Today I made the recipe listed from St. Patrick's Day by the Green Smoothie Girl for my husband.  He normally will not eat many greens such as spinach, kale or collard greens.  So I made this smoothie for us both today.  I did tell him in advance what was in the smoothie and he agreed to taste it before telling me he would not drink this one.  Once he tasted it with a spoon, he took a couple more tastes and told me he couldn't even taste any of the vegetables he doesn't like.  So he ended up drinking a glass of his own.  I was glad he was willing to try it because it is likely the only way I will get these great vegetables into his diet.  And once you taste these smoothies you can agree they actually taste quite good.  I used Agave nectar instead of Stevia in my smoothie and I added some orange juice as well.  If anyone was doubtful of the taste of the Green Smoothie, just give it a try, you might be surprised at how good it actually tastes.  And if you can get your family members to eat some of the greens they normally wouldn't, then it's absolutely worth making.  It's loaded with great vitamins and lots of fiber.  This one does not taste like your front lawn, it's delicious.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Destress at Your Desk

     Sometimes when we are working, it's easy to forget to take a moment to relax.  It's important to take a few moments for our mental and physical well being.   It can really give you the extra energy you need.  When you are working at a desk all day, it's easy to forget how important it is to rid your body of stored up stress.

     Today I'm attaching a video from Self Magazine called "Destress at Your Desk".   This instructor gives very easy to follow moves and if you need a moment during your day, just play this video.  This is a short video that is packed with some very helpful moves.  We've probably been taught some of these moves at work, but it's easy to forget to do them especially if you don't have a routine to follow.  With this video you have a good coach and that makes it easier to do them on a regular basis.   Play this one when you feel you need a moment to unwind or maybe a moment to relax before a big meeting. 

Note: (you can mute my blog music on the right hand side before playing this video)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

     For National Nutrition Month the theme this year is eating right with color.  Today is the day for wearing green.  But we can also add some greens to our meals and snacks for St. Patrick's Day.  There are many good vegetables and fruits to eat today such as green apples, green grapes, string beans, broccoli, lettuce and avocados.  If you get creative you can probably think of many more healthy choices.  The green family of fruits and vegetables offer us low calorie intakes, some have potassium, and others are a good source of dietary fiber as well as Folate and Calcium.  So make sure to eat your salad today, make a green smoothie, or just grab your green snack. It will make you feel better and keep your body healthy.  It might be a good way to help children eat more greens by making today a fun day to eat greens.

    I'm attaching a video from the Green Smoothie Girl blog showing an easy recipe for a green smoothie.  Today would be a great day to give this one a try. Happy St. Patrick's Day!

Note: (you can mute my blog music on the right hand side before watching this video)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Today's Featured Product Bare Escentuals BareMinerals 100% Natural Lip Color

     I've been using Bare Escentuals bareMinerals for the past 5 years.  They have a line of lip colors that are 100% natural.  I've been trying as many different colors in this line as I can because I like natural lip color.  When I wear them, they do not have a bad taste like some lip sticks.  Also, the colors are not to overpowering.  This line makes your lips look very natural.   I love the broad selection of colors.  Some ingredients they contain are Vitamin E, Monoi D-Tahiti Oil (which provides up to 6 hours of moisture), Cupuacu Butter (which promotes smoothness and elasticity), Barley Lipids (improves the overall condition of your lips), Echium Oil (fights inflammation and reduces wrinkles), and they are infused with 100% pure bareMinerals (for an extra dose of healthy nutrients).  They contain no artificial dyes, preservatives or irritants.   

Pictured here: Mauve, Spiced Raisin, Berry Glace', Pink Champagne and Parfait

    The color stays on your lips for a long period of time.  I have to reapply after I eat, but other than that, the color stays on my lips.  Also, the tube of lip color lasts for a long time especially if you have a few different colors in your make up bag.  I like to mix and match my lip colors so I'll usually pick a favorite as the base color and add a different color for contrast.  In the picture attached I'm wearing Berry Glace' as the base and Pink Champagne on the center of the bottom lip for contrast.  One of the "Tips & Tricks" listed on the Bare Escentuals website is to achieve the pouty look after you apply your 100% Natural Lip Color dab some of their 100% Natural Lip Gloss in the center of your bottom lip.  The fun thing about Bare Escentuals products is that there is no specific way of having to put on your makeup.  You can play with different combinations and just have fun.  That's another great thing about this company.  They make putting your makeup on fun.  They give you great color selections and great tools to achieve almost any look you want.

I'm wearing Berry Glace' as my base color and Pink Champagne on the center bottom lip.
Here is (top to bottom) Mauve, Berry Glace' and Gelato.
Here is (top to bottom) Parfait, Spiced Raisin, Pink Champagne and Gingersnap.
     If you haven't had a chance to see more products by Bare Escentuals you can catch some of their presentations on QVC.  And you can also see some of the video presentations on  If you look up any of the Bare Escentuals products on their site, there is a presentation video attached showing that specific product. You can see some of them by clicking here (QVC).  You can also view the Bare Escentuals products on their website by clicking here (Bare Escentuals). I've also seen some Bare Escentuals products sold at my local Ulta store, but they do not have quite as much to choose from as the websites above.

     In case you were wondering the cute mirror shaped like a handbag (seen in the picture above with the 5 tubes of lip color & below) can also be seen and purchased on it is item #A95878.  They have this item in several different colors and they are very handy to carry in your purse when you need to apply some of your natural lip color!

Mirror from QVC Item #A95878.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Today's Featured Product Yes To Cucumbers Soothing Eye Gel

     I've been using this eye gel for the past 3 weeks and I really like this one.  It contains green tea and chamomile, as well as cucumber extract and aloe vera gel.  This product is hypoallergenic and paraben free.  The box lists this item as 99% natural.  Like the facial cleanser, it has a calming effect.  You need only a small amount to pat around your eyes.  In the morning it feels soothing around my eyes.  A couple of times I put it in my refrigerator overnight and when I put it on in the morning it felt so refreshing.  It is also supposed to help keep your eyes from getting puffy.  I personally have not had that issue with my eyes, but I can say it does make them feel very refreshed. It's also supposed to be good for brightening dark circles under your eyes.  I've put this on at night before bed as well and my eyes appear to be very soft looking, no rough patches or lines.  It feels very smoothing to the tender skin under my eyes. 

     I purchased my eye gel at my local Walgreens store and I've seen this on the Yes To Carrots website as well.  The Yes To Cucumbers line is for sensitive skin so if you have any issues using eye gels, this one might be a good one to try.  This one is another winner from the Yes To Carrots organization.  I can't wait to try more of their products.

     Today's Yes To coupon is the code "YESTOLIPS".  If you make a purchase on their website of $20 or more and put in this coupon code you will receive a free lip butter product with your order.  This offer expires in one week.  You can reach their site by clicking here Yes To Carrots.

Soothing Eye Gel works great!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Tip of the Week - "Get-Fit Moves With Your Pet"

     It's important to make sure our furry friends get their exercise as much as it is for us.  After all, we want them to enjoy a long healthy life too.  Today I'm adding a workout video from Self magazine called "Get-Fit Moves With Your Pet".  I'm not sure how effective this one would be for all dog owners, but it's neat to see the cute puppy in the video having a fun day.  My dog prefers chasing her squeak toy around the yard and going for walks.  I might still give it a try with my dog and let you know how it works.  If you try it even with a cat, let me know your results, good luck!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Recipe for a Tasty Pico de Gallo

      Since we are almost in the middle of National Nutrition Month I'd like to share with you my easy, healthy recipe for Pico de Gallo.  I make this every week and store it in a container in my refrigerator.  We use it if we have shrimp tacos, or beef tacos.  And if I want a salad at lunch, I've already got a good vegetable mix ready to toss with some lettuce or spinach.  It's very convenient to have it already made if you are hungry and want to add some vegetables and fruit (tomatoes are officially categorized as fruit) to your meal it's easy to do once everything is already cleaned, chopped and prepared.  
     First I wash the tomatoes (3 medium sized), the jalapeno pepper (1 large), the onion (about 1/3 of a small red onion) and the cilantro (to taste).  Then I chop up the tomatoes, the jalapeno pepper (which I seed first) and the red onion.  I toss them together in my container.  Then I add some cilantro leaves.  And finally, I squeeze the juice of half a lime into the mixture.  I mix it thoroughly and refrigerate until I'm ready to use in a recipe.
Tasty Pico de Gallo

This is a good way to get your daily fruit and vegetable servings into your diet.  And if it's already prepared in advance you are more likely to eat them regularly.  There has been a recent study in England that shows eating tomatoes can help protect against sunburn.  An article in “Mail Online” discusses the study and the results (click here to read).  And peppers may help with weight loss.  There is an article in “The Money Times” that reports one study at the UCLA center for human nutrition that is an interesting article (click here to read).  At Eat Right American Dietetic Association the message for National Nutrition Month this year is to "Eat Right With Color". This simple, easy recipe is one way to help do that this month and beyond.   The added bonus is this recipe tastes and smells great!  If you try it out and use any variations, let me know.  I'm always looking for new ideas.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Exercise Video From Self Magazine "6 Moves to Six-Pack Abs"

     Spring is almost here, before you know it summer will be upon us and we'll be wearing shorts and tank tops.  Here is a an exercise video from Self magazine "6 Moves to Six-Pack Abs".  Self Magazine adds new exercise videos focusing on different muscle groups.  I'll add more as they become available to help us all get ready for summer.

     Turn my blog music off or mute before starting the video.  The music player is on the right hand side midway down the page. 

"Do as many reps as you can with good form to ensure that your core is properly engaged. Getting sloppy? Stop and move to another exercise in any order. Aim to knock out 15 to 20 reps, but if you can do only a few to start, that's OK."--Self magazine introduction to video.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Today's Featured Product Yes To Cucumbers Daily Gentle Cleanser

     I've been using Yes to Cucumbers Daily Gentle Cleanser for about 2 weeks now and I really love this product.  It has a clean cucumber scent that reminds you of summer in your garden.  After I clean my face with this cleanser, my skin feels soft and very clean.  It doesn't make my skin break out and since my skin tends to be sensitive, I would know if this one wasn't good for my skin as I would start to break out quickly.  The texture is light and you only need a small amount to clean your entire face.  I wet my face, put about a dime size amount of the cleanser in the palm of my hand and gently rub it around my face in small circles.  It doesn't lather (like some other cleansers which can be drying to your face) and you can feel it cleaning your skin as you are working it around your face.  It rinses off easily and when you are done patting your face dry, the smell is wonderful.  Especially before bedtime it seems to have a calming effect on me. The scent isn't overwhelming but it smells very fresh and clean.   I would recommend this cleanser to anyone who has sensitive skin and wants a natural cleanser.  This one is hypoallergenic and paraben free.  It is listed as 95% natural.  This cleanser contains Vitamin A and C as well as Aloe Vera and Green Tea.  It is sold at Walgreen's and I've seen it on the company website at Yes to Carrots.  I will be buying this one again in the future because it works.

Daily Cleanser that works and smells great.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Recipe Idea for National Nutrition Month

Here is a recipe for Lovely Lentil Loaf from the channel Veria.  Since it is National Nutrition Month it's good to try out some new healthy recipes.  Enjoy!

  • Here's a tomato sauce-topped loaf of mixed legumes and grains that is the ultimate in cold-weather comfort food.

  • Level:
  • Servings:
  • Cook Time:
    30 min.
  • Ready in:
    1 hr. 10 min.


  • For lentil loaf:
    3 tablespoons canola oil, divided
    1 shallot, minced
    3/4 cup celery, finely chopped
    1/2 cup red bell pepper, finely chopped
    1/2 cup carrot, grated
    3 garlic cloves, minced
    1 teaspoon fresh thyme
    2 cups cooked red lentils
    3/4 cup cooked green split peas
    1/4 cup cooked black lentils
    1 cup cooked brown rice
    1 cup rolled oats
    2 tablespoons tahini
    3 tablespoons red miso (soy paste; available in health food and Asian grocery stores)
    1 1/2 teaspoons soy sauce

    For sauce:
    1 (8-ounce) can tomato sauce
    2 teaspoons umeboshi vinegar (plum vinegar; available in health food and Asian grocery stores and online)
    1 teaspoon soy sauce
    1 teaspoon dark agave nectar (available in specialty and Mexican grocery stores and online)


  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Drizzle a tablespoon of canola oil on a baking pan and set aside.
    Heat remaining two tablespoons of oil in a medium skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallots, celery and red pepper, and sauté for 3 minutes. Add carrots, garlic and thyme and sauté for 2 minutes. Remove from heat and transfer to a large bowl. Stir in all remaining ingredients until well combined. Shape into a loaf and place on baking pan.
    Bake in preheated oven for 30 to 40 minutes, or until heated through.
    Meanwhile heat all sauce ingredients in a small saucepan over medium heat.
    Serve lentil loaf hot with warm tomato sauce.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Derma e Free Sampler Package

     Derma e Natural Body Care is a company that makes skin care products from natural ingredients with the goal of also having them be powerful and effective.  Right now they are offering a sample package of 10 of their most popular items (enough for one use each).  All you need to do is pay for shipping and handling.  You can see the sample items here:  Derma e.  If you have used any of their products or if you use these samples, let me know what you think.

In Honor of National Nutrition Month

Silk Coconut and Silk Dark Chocolate Almond Milks.
     In honor of National Nutrition Month during the month of March instead of grabbing a candy bar or bag of potato chips try making a smoothie for your mid morning or late afternoon snack.   I make my smoothies with frozen fruit that usually contains a mixture of pineapple, strawberries and peaches.  Sometimes I’ll add orange juice or apple juice to make a sweet tasting smoothie.  If you want a tropical tasting smoothie, try using coconut milk and add half of a banana.  If you want a chocolate smoothie try using chocolate soy milk or dark chocolate almond milk with some plain white yogurt to mix with the frozen fruit. 
Insulated purses to carry food to work.

If you are focusing on heart health, use vanilla almond milk with the plain white yogurt.  Sometimes I’ll add some fresh blueberries or raspberries to give the smoothies a different taste.  The good thing about blending them yourself is you can make your smoothies any way you like and you won’t have to worry about any sugars, salts or preservatives being added.          If you are at work, you can take a small blender to plug in by your desk (there are some single size blenders that you can use as cups after blending by personal fitness trainer Chris Freytag that can be purchased on and take frozen fruits , juice, yogurts and milks to put in your company refrigerator.  There are also some stylish, insulated purses that fit cold or hot food items (can also be purchased on if you want to take your own small portion size to keep inside a desk drawer.  It can be a much healthier choice than grabbing extra change and running to the nearest vending machine.  If you start this month, maybe it will become a habit you can continue throughout the year. 

Monday, March 7, 2011

Today's Featured Product JASON Pure and Natural Hand and Body Lotion

Aloe Vera JASON Lotion
     I've been using a hand lotion from the company JASON Pure, Natural and Organic called Pure and Natural Hand & Body Lotion.  I started out using it on my hands but now use it on my body as well.  It contains 84% concentrated natural Aloe Vera.  It's a calming moisture relief lotion for sensitive, irritated skin.  There are no parabens or phthalates in the ingredients.  This lotion is non-greasy so when I use it, it doesn't leave my hands feeling sticky.  It has a mild scent so it is not overwhelming when I apply it to my hands/body.  It's been great to use during the cold winter months because my hands, arms and legs get dry and flaky if I don’t apply creams.  This has left my hands and body feeling soft.  I haven't used it much in the summer months but it does contain Aloe Vera and on the bottle it is recommend for sun damaged skin.  In some of my research I've also found that Aloe Vera contains some natural sun screen protection so it would probably be good to use during the summer months as well.  I like this lotion and have been pleased with the texture, scent and effectiveness of each application.  For me this product has worked well. 

     This company has been making natural products since 1959.  They have been one of the first companies to offer natural products without harsh chemicals.  This is the same company that makes the natural deodorants my family uses.  I buy the hand lotion in the same section that the natural deodorants are located in at my local grocery store, but I've also seen these products at Target and Walmart.  And of course you can also order their products online through their website.

     This is a product I would recommend to anyone who has dry skin, or who wants a hand/body lotion that doesn't have an overpowering scent.  It’s one you can feel good about trying if you are looking for a good, natural alternative hand/body lotion.
The lotion is not sticky and goes on smoothly.


Sunday, March 6, 2011

Tip of the Week - National Nutrition Month Videos

National Nutrition Month March 2011

Read nutritional labels for sodium content.
Last month I wrote about a product called True Lemon and True Lime that can be used as a substitute for salt and sugar (Tip of the week February 13, 2011).  Since March 2011 is National Nutrition Month, I thought I’d add a short video from Marisa Moore a Registered Dietitian with the American Dietetic Association.  She discusses cutting back on salt in our diets and also shows how to watch the amount of sodium by reading nutritional labels correctly.  She discusses serving size and how much is too much sodium for our daily percentage allowance.   The American Dietetic Association’s website will have other videos and articles this month that will focus on National Nutrition Month.

To have beautiful skin, hair and nails you want to begin by consuming healthy foods for your body.  By reading nutritional labels, you can become more empowered and better informed of what products you and your family are eating.  And by adding as many fruits and vegetables with different colors to your daily diet you can stay healthy, look healthy and best of all feel healthy!

You can turn off or mute my blog music half way down the right side of the page before starting the videos.

I'm also attaching a link for the Spanish version of this video presented by Malena Perdomo also a Registered Dietitian.

Click here to view video in Spanish:  Watch Video

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Today's Featured Product Tarte Lipsurgence Natural Matte Lip Stain

    I've been using the Lipsurgence natural matte lip stain by Tarte cosmetics for about a month now and I love this product.  Not only does it make my lips feel smooth, but the colors are long lasting.  They stay on your lips throughout the day.  I do reapply after eating but the color stays on your lips a little more than a regular lipstick after meals.  My Mom tried this same product and she also likes the moisturizing effect on the lips.  They have about 6 shades to choose from, but I think they need more since this is such a wonderful product.  I started out with the color Lucky which is a light pink but since I like a darker color I also used the color Envy which is a dark mauve color.  I found for myself that if I mix the two colors, the result is a pretty, perfect shade of mauve.  My Mom tried the color Exposed which is a lighter nude color and a bit light for her so she thinks a darker color would be good or maybe mixing colors like I did would work best.  I have a picture below with the mixture of Lucky with Envy.
I first apply Envy then add Lucky.

Envy is on the left and Lucky is on the right.

I like this company because they are trying to use natural ingredients that do not contain some of the harmful ingredients other cosmetic companies use. This lip stain does not contain parabens, mineral oil, petrolatum, phthalates, sodium laurly sulfate or any synthetic fragrance. The box that the lip stain comes in states you will receive a 6000% increase in moisture content in your lips after 28 days. I’m not sure if my lips increased moisture by 6000% but it did make them feel much softer especially during these cold winter months. And my Mom agreed that her lips felt more moisturized too. These lip stains are almost like a crayon application that glides on your lips. They don’t have the consistency of other lipsticks and they don’t have the bad taste that some lipsticks do either. They actually have a bit of a minty taste to them which is nice.  

The CEO Maureen Kelly started this company because she too wanted to use cosmetics that were natural and did not contain the bad chemicals that many cosmetics on the market use. The company also uses recycled materials and the materials can often be reused to reduce environmental waste. Their motto is “be green, be smart, be tarte!”

My hope is that they will expand the color choices for this lip stain product. I purchased mine at my local Ulta store and you can also order them on the Tarte website. I’ve also seen them on
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