Tuesday, July 28, 2015

It Works!

We all know I live a healthy lifestyle with my eating habits and exercise regimen, and that I do my best to positively encourage everyone I know to do the same. I post about it frequently and even made a separate Instagram @blakeleyfitness for you to follow that part of my life specifically. One thing I've always preached is to do things the right way; don't fall for easy fixes or magic methods, because they don't work in the long run or are detrimental to your health in the process. Some of you may remember I've blogged on the subject before, warning people not to fall for gimmick products that make false promises or promote unhealthy habits. With that said, you must know that I don't support scam companies or ridiculous products. I admit when I first started seeing "that crazy wrap thing" posted all over my newsfeed, I just scrolled right past assuming it was just another one of those companies. Finally, after seeing quite a few impressive results pictures I did my research on the products and the company behind them. I was actually impressed that they are all natural and not full of the junk that so many others are. They are also described over and over as aiding in your health and beauty goals, while encouraging a healthy diet and exercise; never trying to replace them. Ever. That had my attention, but still a bit skeptical, I did more follow up on the company itself. I discovered it's a Christian based family first and foremost; with a goal to changes lives for the better. That was a pleasant surprise and made me feel good about the company, but I still wasn't convinced it was something I should join. So I put it on the back burner of my mind, but my interest continuously grew as I watched people I actually know on social media achieving goals and dreams by going after success in this business. There's a different vibe that comes from the people involved; it's positive, joyful, enthusiastic, supportive, and honest. Every time I saw a post, I became more and more attracted to it. Over a period of months, I put serious thought into it and prayed endlessly for guidance to make the right choice. If this was true and wonderful company as I felt it was, if it was a smart move for me to make for my family, I prayed that God would give me a smack in the face obvious sign...
After witnessing how this company drastically changed lives in incredible ways, I became more in awe and felt such a strong urge to join. Yesterday morning, while snuggled in bed watching cartoons with my two and a half year old daughter, I got on facebook to see another happy post about this great company. I started crying... I know, bear with me. I wasn't sad, at all. However, I was emotionally overwhelmed to take the leap of faith and become a part of this wonderful family. It was odd, I felt happy about something, but I was crying. I decided to pray about it one more time, for my final sign to do this. So I prayed. After that I went to play with my daughter in her room for a while, during a quick coffee refill break I glanced at facebook again (aren't we all addicted?). The first thing I saw was a video shared of a woman and mama I follow on instagram. It was an extremely emotional video, about her being able to shred up papers from the government for financial aid that she used to have to depend on, and now because of her success with this company she's been able to completely turn her family's life around. I began crying again, right along with her in the video. While not in the same position, I was touched by her honesty and vulnerability and just knew this company was amazing. I took that as a sign from God, after my prayers that this was the right move to make. Some of you may be skeptical, some may not have read past the first sentence of this, and others may delete me thinking "here comes another wrap posting girl.", but I'm here to tell you that I genuinely support this company, what it's about, it's product and am proud to be a part of it. I'll take great pride and joy in helping any and all of you to be a part of it too, whether you just want to try a piece from the line or join the family foundation as well. It changes lives, it works!

Monday, April 13, 2015


I've struggled to find a protein powder that I actually enjoy AND that agrees with my body. I will say, I've always tried to get most of my protein and nutrients from my food, so I didn't turn to protein supplements all that often anyway. However, there were times that making a quick shake or buying a bottled one were more convenient and quick... Only to be frustrated with it afterward. There have been many I liked the taste of, come to find out that they're full or sugar or artificial sweeteners. Then there were some that were low in sugar, but were full of a bunch ingredients I couldn't identify. All of the above mentioned made me sick. Whether tasty or not, appearing healthy or not, they did not react well with my body. Headaches and painful bloating were amongst the biggest issues. So I stopped using them altogether. Afterall, I wasn't going to spend a pretty penny on a big tub of tummy ache. 

Then I discovered this precious gem at Whole Foods. It was on display and caught my attention, so I gave the ingredient list a glance... Only to find myself literally grinning as I read, understood, and approved of every ingredient. I immediately grabbed a tub and didn't even think twice, with that much goodness it was bound to be delicious. (spoiler alert: it's wonderful!) Why? Because it's all from real and actual foods that provide all of these spectacular nutrients, just take a look...

I'll let those stats speak for themselves. You can see that the product is amazing for you and I can vouch that it definitely fills me up with that healthy satisfaction and gives me zero negative side effects. It's also so healthy that I'm happy to share it with my tot. That's saying something, because I'm the most protective mama bear with my daughter's health. Oh, and don't forget delicious! 
I got the chocolate one for my first round, as I figured that would help with my cacao cravings. It's delicious and I've used it in shakes, smoothies, pancakes, 'nice' cream, and so on. I've also sampled the Vanilla Chai recently and it was awesome too. Then... THIS happened. They came out with Mocha. Guys, if you know me, you know I'm a coffee and chocolate fiend. So this is the perfect flavor for me. It's also my newest and most favorite way to make my coffee more excitingThey also have some sport-focused products for pre-mid-post workouts in powders, snacks, and gels that I'm looking forward to looking into and trying out.

ps. Don't mind my hot mess sweatiness, I just smashed a great workout, all the more reason for my new favorite protein.
You can order yours at http://myvega.com or pick up some on your next trip to Whole Foods. They also carry them at an array of vitamin and health/fitness shops too. Just punch in your zip code on their website to find your nearest supply. 

Friday, April 10, 2015

the shaming scale tips both ways

If you use social media, you're very well aware of the negative and hurtful comments that are made all over the place. It's a foul behavior that so many seem to think is acceptable and have no fear of attacking with their keyboards, since they're protected by the psuedo-anonymity of a computer/phone screen. (I'll be writing more on the subject in a bullying post soon.) 

One of the topics we see hated on most is body image. You always hear about "fat-shaming" and how horribly wrong it is. Well yes, it is in fact unacceptable to ridicule someone about them being or appearing overweight. I completey agree it's disgusting to shame them. There are many people that are overweight, to an unhealthy point, and display unhealthy habits for us to see and admittedly judge. However, it is not our place to call them out on it. Especially in a public forum that comes across in a mean manner. If your intentions are truly to help people better themselves and their health, mocking them is not the way to do it. Do so by setting a good example of health and fitness, with encouraging words and hopes to inspire, not shut down. 

So, the verdict here is that fat-shaming is absolutely wrong. It's hurtful, it's uncalled for, and it needs to be stopped. 

But then there's the shaming, that doesn't get looked down upon anywhere near the same level. "Skinny-shaming" as I'll call it. Believe it or not, for all the people telling others to "Stop eating and drop the cheeseburger, you look unhealthy." there are an equal amount of people saying just the opposite to thinner people with remarks like "Quit starving yourself, eat a cheeseburger, you look sick!". For starters, if you don't have a medical degree or a background in fitness and nutrition you have zero foundation to form those statements on, even then you don't know someone's personal story or circumstances. I don't condone unhealthy eating or excerise habits on either end of the spectrum. However, I don't berate anyone for what I think they may or may not do either. 

There are so many variables that make up a person's body, fitness levels, habits, etcetera. There are health conditions that can cause people to gain weight, just as here are ones that cause people to have the inability to keep weight on. There are minor to severe disabitlies, illnesses, injuries, genes, and even medicines that can determine these things. So who are you to judge with out knowing someone's medical record? You're not, so put your finger back down. 

What bothers me (well, it all bothers me) is that we seem to discipline those who fat-shame, but no one sticks up for those who are skinny-shamed. Those under skinny fire have the same amount of feelings as those under the opposite. Body size doesn't reflect emotional heart size. Telling someone they look too thin, sick, or anorexic is just as vile as calling someone too fat, lazy, and gross. Slinging around words about eating disorders is no joking matter either. Whether someone has one or not, it certainly isn't going to help them to hear negativity about the matter. And even if they don't, your defamatory comments could inflict one. If someone is bragging about or seeking help from one, ridiculing isn't the way to go. Lift them up, offer them help, and be kind if you must get involved. But if you can't be positive and supportive, don't butt in. 

These passive-aggressive campaigns in the retail industry are only fueling this fire and certainly not helping anybody's cause. Did Victoria's Secret intend to tell the world that their models are the only idea of a "perfect body"? I personally don't think so, I believe they were trying to market their bra as fitting your body perfectly. Meaning the product is supposed to be perfect, not the girl wearing it. It obviously struck nerves with many though, who assumed it meant you had to look and measure like Candice Swanepoel to be deemed perfect. I don't believe that was their tactic. Regardless, for Lane Bryant to come back with their #imnoangel campaign was a low and immature blow. It 's a direct and derogatory slur at Victoria's Secret and their models implying that their image isn't ideal. More power to a company and it's following to want to embrace their size, curves, body and what have you, but shame on them for doing exactly what they feel has been done to them. Two wrongs don't make a right, and I'm not even sure the first wrong was an intentional wrong, though the second was deliberate. Just remember, the scale tips both ways. Don't be a hypocrite. 

Body type. Race. Orientation. Religion. Gender. These are all things we have the right to choose, and freely and proudly live and love them. No one should compromise that with their disagreeing words. 

"You can be the juiciest, ripest peach in the whole world, and there's still going to be someone that doesn't like peaches." We can't please everyone. There will always be people with opinions and tastes that vary from our own, and that's actually a beautiful thing. Diversity is an incredible thing and makes the world interesting. Discrimination, on the other hand, is not cool, it is not interesting and is definitely not a beautiful thing. So, let's respect eachother's rights to live our life the way we want and remember what your mother always told you "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all." and I'll leave you with one more, "If you wouldn't say it OR type it in front  of your grandparents, don't do it." 

Tuesday, April 7, 2015


I hope everyone had a blessed Easter! I know we felt incredible gratitude to wake up forgiven and to spend our day with loved ones for our Lord Jesus. Spent the morning with God and then joined my parents for a delicious breakfast at a favorite restaurant of ours. Afterward, we had to move our egg hunt indoors, due to the rain. It all worked out though, because for B's first hunt she was a pro and found every single one and had so much fun opening them "WOW! Green duck!" or "Ohhh booful (beautiful) blue bunny!". It's so precious to see the holidays through your child's eyes.
We relaxed for the afternoon and made some fun snacks and crafts, as well as reading lots of spring time books. That night we enjoyed dinner at my step-dad-in-law's mom's (say that ten times fast) house. B got to do another egg hunt and scored big with eggs filled with $2 bills and quarters. It was definitely a very hoppy day!
If you know me, you know I love making fun and festive foods for the holidays... Okay, who am I kidding, I like making them all the time. On top of that, I always like to keep it healthy in our home. So, below are some of the fun and nutritious Easter treats I made for our tot this year. As well as the goodies to fill an entire Easter basket and eggs without candy. I hope this sparks some fun ideas for next year for your kiddos, or even just fun ideas for any day. I'm pretty any toddler will accept bunny pancakes 365 days a year. So for breakfast on Saturday (because we were going out to eat on Sunday), I made these healthy bunny pancakes which B thought was the greatest thing ever. "It's bunny mama, it's his ears. I yike it, it's yummy!" Then on Sunday afternoon she had some fruit filled eggs... no candy for my healthy baby bunny.
 I filled her hidden eggs with the most adorable individual Easter themed stickers (thank you Target, yet again!) So grateful not to have spent Saturday night cutting out individual ones, which was my original plan until I found these gems.
I I mean, the Easter Bunny filled her basket with plenty of goodies too! She received many other baskets from family too, all with arts & crafts, stuffed bunnies, baby lotion, and not a sweet in sight. They all know this crazy Mama Bear means healthy business.(;

B's dress & hat: Gymboree // Sandals: Target

Sunday, March 29, 2015

rolls are for rookies

Sushi is an absolute favorite of mine. It's also an incredibly healthy genre of food, when you know how to order it. Fortunately, the healthiest stuff is actually the most delicious. Below I'll share some, by which I mean a lot, of our favorite dishes. I'd love for all of you to enjoy all of the wonderfulness that under the sea has to offer, and avoid the unnecessary junk along the way.

For starters, and I don't mean appetizers, rolls are for rookies.  Whenever we go to sushi, it seems that everyone is ordering rolls of some kind. It makes me sad, because while yes they're leaving more of the goods for me to order, they're missing out on the best the restaurant has to offer. Please know that I'm not knocking all rolls, but a great majority of them include the ingredients you don't want to consume. They also tend to stick to the basics as far as sea food goes. Lots of crab mix, some shrimp here and there, and maybe some salmon or tuna on occasion. It's a waste of sushi night not to be adventurous, and in turn healthy. Here are the key words of what NOT to order:
Cream Cheese: 
I love cream cheese as much as the next normal human, but I also know that it not a health conscious choice. If you absolutely must have it, stick to one piece and make all of the other ingredients in said choice great for you.
I absolutely despise the stuff, so it's easy for me to avoid. However, I know it's popular amongst others, and in a lot of the rolls. It may be listed as spicy mayo, creamy sriracha, or disguised as "mix", meaning it's mixed into whatever seafood filling is in the roll. It's obviously not a light option, and totally gross at that.
This is Japanese for battered and deep fried. Need I say more? Fried foods are a big no-no.
Evil attracts evil, so naturally these three options tend to go together on a lot of the dishes, only making them three times worse for you. One that isn't as awful for you, but still not great is the white rice in a lot of rolls and sushi dishes, the best way to avoid it is to order everything as sashimi. You're not missing much by deleting the above ingredients from your order. After all, you're there for the sea food right? Speaking of which let's dive in under the sea and talk about the treasure chest full of sashimi and sushi gold.

Seaweed sashimi salad, miso soup, oysters, and edamame all make great starters. Then we tend to order quite a few of the following... (We are incredibly adventurous eaters and enjoy eating things out of the bento box.)
Amaebi Sushi aka Sweet Shrimp (sushi bodies & fried heads)
Hamachi Kama aka Yellowtail Cheek/Collar (cooked)
Aji Sashimi aka Japanese Mackeral (sashimi & then they fry the bones)
Hiramasa Sashimi aka Amberjack
Toro &/or Chutoro Sashimi aka Tuna
Sake Sashimi aka Salmon
Unagi aka Freshwater Eel (broiled)
Hamachi Sashimi aka Yellowtail
Ika Sashimi aka Cuttlefish or Squid
Tako Sashimi aka Octopus
Tako Wasabi aka Octopus Tentacles in Wasabi Root
Hotate Sashimi aka Live Scallops
Ikura Roe aka Salmon Eggs
Uni aka Sea Urchin
MMM. Drooling yet? I hope this provides you with a whole new perspective of deep sea dishes and that you're encouraged to try something new the next time you go. Or if you're really daring try "Omakase" meaning in the chef's hands. Where he'll surprise you with a variety of everything over several courses.


Sunday, February 15, 2015

Valentine's Day

What a wonderful day full of love. Every day is and should be that way. 
The hubs had a little work in the morning, but I got to sleep in a bit, so we didn't miss much time away. Kicked off the morning with a good workout, because showing your health some love is important too. Brooklynn joined me by trying to mimick everything I was doing. I'll have to get it on video next time. She's pretty much the cutest thing ever. We followed it up with a nutritious and festive lunch... 

If you know me, I relish the opportunity to play with my food. By which I mean, make it cutesy and themed. Yes, I'm THAT mom. My tot appreciates it and it makes me smile. XO.

We read some Valentine and lovey books to get B into her nap, and afterward it was off to the park... 
We love the playground and the park. We love the swings and the slides. We love the sunshine and beautiful days. We love heart print things and Valentine's. Most of all, we love each other.
After a day full of fun and me playing Mamarazzi, we flew to dinner. Literally...
We enjoyed a delicious dinner together at one of our favorite sea food restaurants. Afterward, we went for a night time stroll around some local shops. We made our stop at B's favorite waterfall to say hello and blow kisses to all of the Nemo characters she thinks are in the pond. Coffee in hand, pretty views in our eyes, and love in our hearts. It was a beautiful day.
Brooklynn thought Valentine's Day really rocked and we hope yours was filled with love too!