Lately I have been on the lookout for a refreshing pick me up in the afternoons when I am dragging. Don’t get me wrong I love coffee but it isn’t very refreshing. I then came across an opportunity to try Starbucks Refreshers Sparkling Beverages which sounded like it could be just what I was looking for.
This was the first flavor that I tried and I really enjoyed it. It was a wonderful combination of raspberry and pomegranate, a little tangy and a little sweet.
The second flavor I tried was the Strawberry Lemonade. I also enjoyed this one because if you know me you know how much I love lemonade. I was addicted to anything citrus, especially lemonade throughout my entire pregnancy.
The last one I tried was the Orange MelonRefresher which was my favorite! I was actually surprised that I enjoyed as much as I did. I like melon but not usually in drinks and I really am not a fan of orange soda so I tried this flavor last thinking that I wouldn’t like it but I actually LOVED it. The orange and melon paired really well together without either flavor overpowering the other. Each beverage is a sparkling, delicious boost of natural energy from Green Coffee Extract you can enjoy anytime. With real fruit juice, B vitamins, ginseng, antioxidants from vitamin C and only 60 calories per can, it’s a pick-me-up you can feel good about.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post, produced in collaboration with Bliss and Starbucks. I received a Starbucks Refreshers sample to review. The opinions shared in this post are my own.
There are a number of prenatal and postnatal beauty products out there today and it can be a real challenge to figure out which ones you should try and which ones you should just pass on. I recently received a package from Belli Skincare containing their Your Best Baby Bump Duo and their Anti-Chloasma Facial Sunscreen. Although all three items had their pros and cons, I absolutely loved them all and would recommend everything. I really look forward to trying products from Belli’s Motherhood Line and maybe even their Baby Line. Check out my review of each product below:
Maintains the look of smooth, healthy skin with scientifically researched* ingredients that help prepare skin for stretching during pregnancy.
A luxurious blend of pure plant extracts to nourish and moisturize the skin
The aromatherapy benefit of lavender soothes and calms the senses
Contains Vitamin E and grapeseed oil, both are rich in antioxidants
Used in fine spas as a pre-natal massage oil
Pro: I love the smell! It is really wonderful and I am looking forward to packing it up and taking it to the birthing center with us so that Neil can use it to massage my back. I also love how it sprays on so easily and isn’t too greasy feeling. Neil also loves the smell of this oil.
Con: The spray is nice but sometimes it goes on a little wild- I have learned to remove my shirt before putting it on now so it won’t get all over my clothes. The other con is the price- it is a little expensive at $39.
Would I recommend? I would and I AM recommending it to moms-to-be. I would recommend getting the Your Best Baby Bump Duo because it is a good deal and has both the oil and the lotion.
Deeply moisturizes, soothes and comforts dry skin.
Features lemon oil which is known for its uplifting qualities
Chamomile soothes and refreshes
Shea butter moisturizes and smooths
Pro: Smells like lemon cookies! I absolutely love this lotion and so does Neil. We both used it after spending too much time in the sun and it did a good job at soothing our burnt skin. It also really does a great job at moisturizing. I also love that it smells like lemon cookies but the smell isn’t over powering and really mellows out shortly after applying.
Cons: I really can’t think of any cons! It is a little on the more expensive side for some but honestly I think the price is pretty competitive for the quality.
Would I recommend? I would definitely recommended this to anyone regardless of whether you are pregnant or not.
Shield yourself from UVA and UVB rays with pregnancy-friendly sunscreen ingredients.
Features zinc oxide & titanium dioxide– minerals that act as physical sunscreen filters
Sun exposure during pregnancy can result in chloasma– dark brown spots that 70% of pregnant women experience
Lightly tinted to blend in with all skin types
May be worn alone or under makeup
Pro: It doesn’t have the normal sunscreen smell (which I hate). Although it is tinted it blends right in and I find it evens my skin tone out just a bit (maybe I’m the only one who notices though). It isn’t heavy on the skin and it works really well with my makeup. I usually wear a tinted moisturizer and lately I have just been wearing the Belli sunscreen instead.
Con: It is a little expensive, especially if you plan to reapply frequently or if you are a little heavy handed with it. I wouldn’t wear this as my go to sunscreen if I were heading to the pool or the beach but it is good for everyday wear.
Would I recommend? I would recommend this, however, if you know you really need a lot of sunscreen in the summer and/or spend a lot of time lounging on the beach I would also have another facial sunscreen for that and use this as more everyday use.
Tweet about this giveaway: “I want to win @runwithtongs @BelliSkincare giveaway http://wp.me/pFVWo-3jU”
Disclaimer: Belli Skincare provided me with these products at no cost. I was under no obligation to review them if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway.
Did you know? You can take advantage of savings on Belli products by clicking on the bright pink Share & Save button that appears on the far right-hand side of belliskincare.com. When they click the button and share Belli with at least 3 of their friends via email, Facebook or Twitter, they and their friends can receive an exclusive promo code good for 20% off their purchase at belliskincare.com.
Spend an average of 45 minutes per day working out even on passive rest days. – Improved by 13 minutes per day (36 minutes per day) from last week but not up to where I want to be. This will continue to be a goal for next week.
On passive rest days do yoga, go for a walk or do a gentle swim. –I did yoga this week! Wahoo! I did have one rest day that I didn’t do anything. Again this is a continuing goal.
Get back to meal planning and work on eating foods that will benefit my health, my running and my body.- This week has been great for food! I created a meal plan this week and came home with lots of yummy nourishing food. Favorite meals of the week: Huge green salad and whole wheat penne with ratatouille sauce, and huge green salad and a quinoa bowl with tons of veggies and cheeze sauce.
Hydrate. Drink more water, more frequently. That is one thing that I haven’t been doing well enough lately and I know I should.- I have been drinking a lot more water, a lot less coffee and a lot less beer.
Conclusion. This week went really well. I still need to make improvements but I am on the right track. Yesterday my hips and knee were bothering me some so I decided to do hip opening yoga instead of going on my run. Today I will do that run and shift my other runs a little bit over the next week so I am gong every other day.
Goals for this week:
Spend an average of 45 minutes per day working out even on passive rest days. (Passive rest days = gentle walk, yoga (non-power or hot), easy swim)
Continue to Hydrate. Drink more water, more frequently. That is one thing that I haven’t been doing well enough lately and I know I should.
Drink less coffee and less alcohol. Neil and I have decided that we are going to cut back on these two things to improve our health, our energy levels and (hopefully) our running. We have decided that we can have a coffee on Saturday and we can have a max of two alcoholic beverages per week and only on Thursday, Friday or Saturday and not before a run day.
Safety First: Road ID
When I first started running my husband and I always went on your runs together. Although he is faster than me he was always just 2-3 minutes ahead of me and I felt safe knowing he was near by. Nowadays I often do my running alone, many times in the early morning or afternoon and since I don’t have my husband or a friend with me I always wondered what if something happened to me.
A few weeks ago I made the poor decision to go out on a run even though it was hot and I knew I had not hydrated well. By the last half mile of my run I started to feel a little dizzy but I pushed through. As soon as I arrived home I had to get some water and sit down for awhile because the horrible combination of heat, humidity and lack of hydration made me feel like I was just about to pass out. I lucked out that I made it home before that feeling hit but fear set in anyways and I couldn’t stop thinking about the what ifs. That’s when I looked into getting a Road ID.
I talked with the team at Road ID and they decided to send me a Road ID of my choice to have for my safety and to try out for review. I had a choice between a few different styles: the Wrist ID Sport, the Wrist ID Elite, the Wrist ID thing, the Shoe ID, the FIXX ID or the Ankle ID. I decided to go with the Wrist ID Sport because it seemed like the perfect one for running. After measuring my wrist I chose my size, color and what I wanted on my ID. I put my full name, location, my husbands number, my parents number, I noted that I have no allergies and lastly “Follow Your Bliss”.
I now run with my Road ID on every outdoor run. I have a Garmin on one arm and my ID on the other and even though it looks a little silly I don’t care because it’s all about safety first.
Do you run or do outdoor activities with an ID? If not when will you start to?
Over a twitter discussion over my absolute favorite tea- Mighty Leaf’s Orange Dulce I came into contact with Mighty Leaf about doing a review of their new iced teas. They sent me their four new iced tea flavors to try and let me tell you they don’t disappoint. These teas are just like Mighty Leaf’s small tea bags in giant form; so not only do they make delicious tea but what isn’t fun about a giant tea bag?
The Mighty Leaf Iced Teas flavors:
o Ginger Peach Iced Tea: A blissful and lightly sweet black iced tea infused with sun-swelled peaches and delicate ginger.
o Calypso Mango Iced Tea: A sweet and cooling black iced tea with an indulging blend of South Indian black tea leaves, luscious mango, and tropical fruit.
o Organic Black Iced Tea: A flavorful black iced tea made of refreshingly rich and smooth South Indian organic black tea leaves hand-picked on the dewy slopes of the Nilgiri Mountains.
o Sunburst Green Iced Tea: A cool and vibrant iced green tea that delivers mountain-grown Chinese green tea leaves brightened with the crisp taste of ripe oranges and sweet citrus. The lowest in caffeine among all four flavors.
Iced tea is my favorite summer beverage however I don’t often make it at home because unless I have loose tea it is no fun to try to make tea from a handful of tiny tea bags. Well Mighty Leaf makes things so much easier by having their giant iced tea bags. All you have to do is steep the tea bag and then add ice. It’s never been easier to make iced tea at home.
I really enjoyed all of these flavors and once we started making them we haven’t been able to stop. My favorite is the Sunburst Green Iced Tea because it is fresh and crisp and perfect on a hot day. Neil’s favorite is the Organic Black Iced Tea it is wonderfully dark and refreshing.
Summer might be coming to an end but it’s never too late to enjoy a nice cold crisp glass of iced tea.
*CLOSED* GIVEAWAYS: Mighty Leaf is offering a giveaway of their Summer Brewing Kit. One person can receive a box of each of their new teas, as well as the Bodum Iced Tea Pitcher which makes fresh iced tea in minutes. The kit’s total value is approximately $60. US Residents only. Giveaway open until August 25th at 4pm EST
Mandatory: What is your favorite summer drink?
*Additional Entries* Leave a separate comment for each
Honey is one of those things I never thought much about until I went vegan and began reading labels and recipes and now I see that it is everywhere. Then came cooking where honey is often found in baked foods, desserts and granola and finding a vegan replacement can sometimes be difficult. Agave is usually a suitable replacement but the consistency is often too thin and the flavor is slightly too sweet.
Although it doesn’t taste exactly like honey, it has more of an apple flavor- because well yeah it is made with apples. But it really is the closest in flavor and consistency to honey and it taste delicious. I have used it in my tea and oatmeal and on apples with cinnamon and almond butter. I haven’t tried it in baked goods or granola yet but that will be my next challenge.
Now that you know more about this wonderful product I am going to give two lucky people to win a bottle of their own. All you have to do is enter- oh and for an additional chance to win head over to Keri’s blog I Eat Tree’s because she is also giving away a bottle.
To Enter: (leave a comment for each entry) The giveaway is open to U.S. residence only. The winner will be randomly selected on Monday, March 21th, 2011 at 11 PM EST.
Leave a comment telling me why you’d love to try Bee-Free Honee
Visit the Bee-Free Honee website and leave a comment telling me something new that you learned
Follow me on Twitter and leave a comment below telling me you did.
Tweet, “Enter to win #vegan Bee-Free Honee @cookveganlover http://wp.me/pFVWo-1H2” and leave a comment to tell me you tweeted.
“Like” Cook.Vegan.Lover on Facebook and leave a comment below telling me you did.
Sign up for the Cook.Vegan.Lover. newsletter, and leave a comment to let me know you did
This past Saturday we finally made it to Angelica Kitchen, a restaurant that has been on my “To Try” list for years. We met up with my girlfriend Cate for lunch at noon which was perfect timing because the place filled up quickly and within 20 minutes there was a long waiting list. It took a while or us to make a decision as to what we wanted to get because there are so many really yummy sounding dishes on the menu.
To start the Hubz and I ordered the Angelica Cornbread, a wheat free cornbread that I have heard raving reviews about on a number of blogs. Now this is not your traditionally fluffy cornbread, it is dense and filled with whole grains. It is really delicious and worth the raving about. We also ordered a side of the miso tahini spread to go with it; it was good but the cornbread would have been fine on it’s own.
For my main dish I decided to go with the special of the day which was tofu with a chickpea miso sauce, veggies, quinoa pilaf and an Asian guacamole. I thought that the dish was really good and I loved the Asian guacamole; then again I love anything with avocado. Although the dish was really tasty and made with high quality ingredients I have to say at $16 the dish was a little pricey for what I got but oh well it was still delicious and (almost) worth it.
The Hubz went with the Thai Me Up entree which is An All Raw Entree – delicate strands of daikon radish, butternut squash & carrot, on a bed of garlic-lemon marinated kale, dressed with Thai tahini sauce. This dish was absolutely incredible and I am so jealous that I didn’t get it. We both really loved the noodles and the sauce but the star was the garlic-lemon marinated kale; it was incredible. This is a dish that I would recommend you order whether as the entree or the smaller appetizer version.
Cate ordered the Warm Roasted Vegetable Salad A seasonal selection of roasted vegetables tossed with arugula
in a balsamic vinaigrette and garnished with garlic crostini spread with creamy hummus. I only tried a small bite of one of the veggies which was really tasty so I can’t really tell you overall how the dish was but lets just say there wasn’t anything left when Cate was done. Cate also got a soy chai tea which she raved about and went back for seconds.
Overall this has easily become one of my favorite restaurants in NYC; I think that the price can be a little high for everyday eating but it is a great spot to visit when you are in the city. I am ready to head back and try everything else on the menu.
I feel like I did increase my raw food intake however not as much as I had originally imagined. I love to be in the kitchen and I find that cooking is a way for me to relax and be creative. I would like to become more creative in the raw foods world- step out of my comfort zone and work on more raw recipes this summer.
I don’t keep track of my exact weight so much nowadays but I know that my clothes feel better and that I am getting closer to a weight that I am comfortable with. I currently started the P90X to jump start my year and get me ready for some intense backpacking this summer with the Hubz. 3. To run a 5K
Well this did not happen. I started the C25K and it was going really well and then I just stopped. I don’t really know why but I know this one one goal that I had for 2010 and will probably end up on my 2011 list as well. 4. Blog more
I have blogged more and not only that I blog with more of a purpose. I feel that 80% of the time I blog with a purpose and that is at least a 25% improvement since last year which it a success! However there is always room for improvement and I will keep improving my blog. I even wrote my first e-book and I am starting on my second one! 5. Find a job that makes me happyx2
No I am not a fire fighter- I just work for them!
Not only did I find a job in March 2010 that I absolutely love I started a program through the Institute for Integrative Nutrition to become a holistic health counselor. I now not only have 2 jobs that I love plus write a blog I love, I am a housewife to boot!
Over the last 12 months I have left my awful job, found a new job I love, started a health counseling program, became pregnant, moved, had a miscarriage, healed, became more dedicated to my blog and became a happier, healthier person. Stay tuned for my goals for 2011.
Do you set yearly goals for yourself? Do you find that this works for you?
The information on this blog is for information purposes only and no guarantees are made concerning the accuracy, reliability, and completeness of that information. The blogger behind this website accepts no responsibilities for errors or omissions on the site.
Remember that any advice, tips, or recommendations you receive from this blog are not to be substituted for professional advice, please consult with a medical professional before starting any new exercise or diet plans. Visitors should take action based on the information provided at their own risk, as the blog owner is not responsible for any losses, damages, or injuries, that occur as a result.