Monday, May 18, 2015

Teacher Appreciation Gifts

It's the end of the school year, and that means it is time to thank our wonderful teachers and school staff for all their amazing hard work.  My son goes to an environmentally forward Montessori school so I wanted to give the teachers something that reflected that sentiment but was also somewhat homemade, creative and hand made in part by my son.  Therefore, I decided to get some plain white coffee mugs and have my three year old son paint them.  I bought the mugs at Michaels.  They came as a kit with the paint, and you simply paint them then bake them to set the paint.  Super easy.  Next my son and I went to the store and picked out herbs, which we planted in the mugs with tags reading "Thanks for helping me grow!"  Of course, the teachers and staff will eventually need to relocate the herbs to a larger vessel with drainage holes and can then use the mugs for coffee, tea or even pens at their desk.  They were a big hit!  My son loved painting the mugs and letting me know which one goes to which teacher.  I found the tags by searching free printable online and simply tied them on with natural string.  I even saw one of the gifts sitting on the recipient's desk as I left the school today.  Remember to thank your teachers!  Everyone deserves to be appreciated for jobs well done!

Enjoy and Thrive!!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Low Glycemic Mint Chocolate Chip Smoothie

For those of you who do not know, I have a serious weakness when it comes to mint chocolate chip ice cream.  It has always been my favorite sweet treat.  It began as a child when my father would get me a mint chocolate chip ice cream cake every year for my birthday.  It was the best treat, and one of my fondest memories growing up.  However, in the years since discovering my candida and dairy allergies, my indulgences in this decadent dessert are few and far between...until now! 

I am so excited to have found this delicious recipe created by my sister-in-law's got's my husband's brother's wife's mother (how's that for a mouthful), who is a genius at creating healthy and delicious recipes, so please check out her blog:  Anyways, I indulge in this healthier version of mint chocolate chip decadence several time a week, and it even allows me to have mint chocolate chip "ice cream" for breakfast.  Even better, it's a low glycemic index smoothie packed with super foods and protein!  I changed a few things, I use Young Living Essential Oils and only use two drops instead of three.  I also add kale.  I find it gives it a brighter green color more similar to mint chocolate chip ice cream, and I always have it on hand.  However, both of these adjustments are pure preference and convinence of what I have available in my home.  Added bonus: my three year old also loves it!

Check out the recipe in the link below:

Enjoy and Thrive!

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

What's in your beach bag?

As summer approaches and we start planning for our beach vacations, warmer weather, fun in the sun, days at the pool and all the things that make summer so wonderful.  It is also time to start thinking about your summer beach bag.  We fortunately live near the coast, and it is already beach weather here!  The other day when we were enjoying a morning at the beach, I decided to take a photo and write a blog about what I love and always have in my beach bag.  First of all, when I am with my family, I take our really large Life is Good anchor beach bag.  (When it's just me and hubby, I grab my smaller straw bag).  I love how my Life is Good bag fits everything we need (including three or more large beach towels).  I also make sure to have my filtered mineral water in a glass or stainless steal bottle so I am not ingesting BPA or any of the other toxins found in plastic.  Klean Kanteen makes great ones that can be purchased here: Non-toxic Water Bottles.  I also make sure to I have a hat and a bathing suit coverup.  Right now my favorite coverups are my J. Crew tunic (pictured above next to my hats do below) and my maxi skirt/dress from La Blanca (pictured below). I am also in love with my Life is Good straw hat (pictured in all).  I searched for a long time for hat that fits my large head, and finally found this one at our local Life is Good shop.

We also always bring our Bose Bluetooth Speaker.  It produces quality sound, is portable and easy to stow away when it is not being used.  Lastly, when I'm not using coconut oil as my sunscreen I pack and use Juice Beauty Organic Sunscreen.  It is does not have the toxic and irritating ingredients most sunscreens contain, and it provides more protection than coconut oil for those long days in the sun or strong Caribbean sun.

Non-toxic Water Bottles
Juice Beauty Organic Sunscreen

What's in your beach bag?