Saturday, January 31, 2015

Attitude Adjustment

Today’s brain weather is foggy with a chance of unintentional grammar mistakes and an 80% chance of sentences making no sense. Let’s all just play fair and roll with it, shall we?

After seeing a specialist last Tuesday, I am feeling overwhelmingly more at ease with my health situation and what it will look like for me in the future. My doctor was a woman that could easily be cast in an episode of Grey’s Anatomy. She was fashionable, witty, but most importantly, I knew right away that when she spoke all medical to me (advice: that’s when you just nod your head and say “okay”), she was, like her title, a specialist in her field; very knowledgeable and skilled in dealing with other patients who have had my problem.

Throughout our conversation, it was like she was literally pulling the words right out of my mouth. How comforting, for me as a patient, to know that I’m not the first woman to go through this and that there is a solution. After all, there better be…it’s 2015! Alright, let’s cut to the chase. I am now on meds and will have a follow-up appointment on Valentine’s Day. Awe, how sweet (insert eye roll). In the meantime, she told me I had to drastically cut back on exercise and find ways to de-stress myself. Stress is one of the leading factors of all this so she suggested yoga, meditation, bi-weekly massages, etc.

I’m an active person, so this did not resonate well with me. How was I supposed to cut back on working out when working out was my primary way of de-stressing? I’m a natural-born stubborn person but knew that if I wanted to get my body back to balance, I needed to take this month to really focus on giving it what it needs vs. giving it more trips to the doctor. It was time to game plan what the next couple weeks would look like so I reached out to friends for suggestions.

Laura, co-creator of WorkItOut100, highly recommended the book Yogalosophy: 28 Days to the Ultimate Mind-Body Makeover by Mandy Ingber. She said it positively changed her life and I’m all about that right now! Along with the bass. Yoga book? Check. What else did I need? Oh yeah, a little more faith and a lot more God. I can’t control what is going on health-wise so I had a self-talk and told myself to just let go and trust. Trust that things within me will get realigned and that I will begin to feel like myself again.

While standing in Barnes and Noble in the “Journal” aisle, I couldn’t pick between two similar ones. Both had the same bible verse but with different cover illustrations. Then, it hit me. 

See that little red bird on the cover and see that little red bird ornament? That ornament was given to me by Vicky and has since been a symbol of our friendship. When small glimpses of God happen, it leaves me in said aisle of Barnes and Noble tearing up and thanking Him for helping me make a decision because God knows (literally) I can’t make one for the life of me! I also bought It Was Me All Along by Andie Mitchell after reading review after review about how fantastic of a book it was. I'm two chapters in and already agree! 

The past few days I have seen a drastic turn around in the way I do things. My attitude and outlook towards friends, co-workers, students, awful drivers, has taken a complete 180. I have been more intentional in all things and it is coming back to fill my heart up with the joyous moments that it craves and needs. I began Leadership Group on Thursday night and met amazing people who, like me, are still trying to find where they belong in this world and how we can lead and walk alongside others during the way. Community. Love it. I have been more interactive with K. Talking with her more about pre-teen drama at school, her body and how it’s changing, and how last night we decided Olaf needed a makeover. Every night this week she has begged for me not leave. Last night, she hid my keys, hugged and held onto me, and said it’s ok if I sleepover. 

 I learned early on, thanks to my oldest brother, that your attitude can completely make or break a situation and this week put a big stamp of approval on that. Big changes are coming later this year and so I am soaking up every little thing my present day happenings have to offer.

Comment below - I would love to hear from you! 

What is on your current book list? 
How do you de-stress? 

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Saturday, January 24, 2015

From the Internet to My Kitchen

Good morning! I have to start by saying the number of times I have sat down in the past few weeks to write a deep, thought-provoking post has been astronomical. I don't know what my deal is but I just can't seem to produce anything worth publishing…so here we are.

Today I would like to share with you some of my recent reads and finds from the around the internet. 

The winner may surprise you!

Alright, I LOVE this. Because when pronouncing words like "quinoa" is hard, we need these diagrams to make other healthy things easy! 

Pearls of Wisdom via Clean Eats, Fast Feets
Need a laugh? Read on. 

I made this last night for dinner and will now be penning the meal in my recipe book (yes, I have a recipe book and yes, I love that I'm 25 and have one). 

My DSLR battery was dead so I apologize for the poor iPhone picture quality! 

Avocado and Greek Yogurt Chicken Salad via Organize Yourself Skinny
I made a batch of this last Sunday and used it throughout the week for my lunches. I put a serving on Flatout Bread, rolled it up and ate it as a wrap! If you are looking for a new recipe that you can prep and use for the week ahead, I highly suggest giving this one a try.

Victory for a charged camera battery! For the shredded chicken, I followed this crockpot recipe.


I partially blame my lack of creativity for an underlying health issue that has been taking place for about a year. Without going into too much detail, I have had numerous doctor visits and will be seeing a specialist next week. FINGERS CROSSED I begin to acquire some answers! I would greatly appreciate if you put me in a small area of your thoughts and prayers! XoXo. 

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Trades of Hope

Today I interviewed Jodee Iten who is a Compassionate Entrepreneur with Trades of Hope. I have known Jodee since I was little and our families are close friends. Trades of Hope empowers women out of poverty in 11 different countries around the world.

When was Trades of Hope started?
Trades of Hope was founded in 2010 by two women and their two daughters. The founders have met with people from each of our 21 artisan groups in 11 different countries (including the USA) to provide beautiful fair trade, handmade jewelry, scarves, handbags, and home decor. The Home Team is in Palm Coast, Florida and we just reached 1,000 Compassionate Entrepreneurs throughout the US.  The company is looking to grow, so if you want to join a company basically from the ground floor and help women around the globe, now is the time!

Who are you helping and how are they being paid?
We help women in 3rd world countries out of poverty so they can feed, clothe and educate their families; in Haiti women often have to give up their children simply because they can not feed them; keep women out of the sweatshops & sex trade; and many women who have overcome difficult health situations like women who are cured from leprosy, but are still shunned by their families or women who have been attacked by acid. It is hard to imagine what all of these women have been through and struggle with each day! Most women in 3rd world countries make $2/day. Our artisans are paid their asking price which is typically 2-6x what they would normally make (ex. $10-$14/day) and are paid using fair trade guidelines. The artisans are paid per piece and paid upfront.  So if TOH has a sale, it is our company that is taking the discount and the artisans are still being paid their normal pay. In 2014, Trades of Hope employed 6,585 artisans and it is said for every woman in poverty she will bring 4 family members or people in her community with her and we impacted 26, 612 lives!

Why did you join Trades of Hope?
I had hosted an online party for a friend last June and I fell in love with the mission of the company, helping women less fortunate than me, yet are still mother's just like me, and I loved all of the jewelry I ordered. I have been a stay at home mom for 5 years and was looking for something I could do for myself, work flexible hours, yet still stay home with my 3 children! I joined in August of last year and I have LOVED every part of my journey with Trades of Hope so far!

How can you be involved with Trades of Hope?
JOIN- We are always looking to grow our sisterhood and spread the mission of Trades of Hope and ultimately make a larger impact on our artisans around the world.
HOST- You can host an online Facebook party, a catalog party or an in home party and invite your friends and family to help make an impact.
SHOP-  You can shop from someone's party like Carrie is having or from my website any time.  Each purchase makes a BIG impact.

If you want to be a part of Carrie's party from Jan 16th-Jan 26th you can shop at:

If you are interested in learning more about Trades of Hope you can contact Jodee at:

Jodee Iten
Cell: 704-560-5864
FB Page: Jodee Iten - Trades of Hope

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Review: Therapeutic and Sports Massage

Disclaimer: While this post is sponsored, all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

I've had my fair share of massages, some more enjoyable than others, but this was my first therapeutic and sports massage. I was clueless as to what to expect. Would she stretch me into a pretzel? Would I feel sore after? How would I feel the days following the appointment? 

When I met Anne, I instantly felt comfortable and welcome in her studio. After a few minutes of getting to know each other, I filled out paperwork and we talked about what I wanted out of my massage. I'm pleased that she took the time to listen and write down the areas that I wanted her to focus on. This made me feel like she truly wanted me to get a positive experience and leave feeling satisfied. 

So what makes a therapeutic and sports massage different than your normal massage? Anne targets people that are in chronic or acute pain due to injuries, repetitive movement, bad posture, etc. I could really tell the difference when she "worked her magic" around my knee and ankle muscles. It felt SO good to get some of my running injuries worked on. 

If you live in the Denver area, I highly recommend seeing Anne for your next massage (first time clients receive $25 off!). She followed up with me the next day to make sure I wasn't experiencing any pain and if she could change anything for next time. In a world where we are always on the go, it was meaningful that she took the time to talk with me about my time at her studio. 

For more information about Anne and her services, visit her website! 

Sunday, January 11, 2015

A New Favorite Winter Activity

As you can tell, the blog has been pretty quiet for a while. I spent my two-week vacation around the holidays in Minnesota (perks of working at an elementary school!) and decided to take a much needed writing break to really focus my time and energy on family, friends, and Christmas cookies.

As much as I enjoyed sleeping in and getting coffee with friends and daily naps by the fireplace, I was a little ready for my routine again. Although yesterday has never been a part of my routine, I'm thinking I wouldn't mind making it a weekend thing…every weekend.

My roommate found a killer deal on LivingSocial for snowshoeing, so yesterday morning we drove to Frisco and took advantage of it. Umm…I LOVED IT. Like, why had I never done this before?!

It was a little chilly when we started but once our hearts got pumping and we "climbed" a couple hills, it was perfect. 

Whenever I'm in the mountains hiking or in this case, snowshoeing, I have to continually remind myself to "look up" because hello, look at what I'm walking amongst. Pure beauty. It's easy to keep your eyes on your feet so you don't crash and burn, but I don't ever want to forget these views. 

The trails we took were great for newbies like us and we even took a couple detours which put us on a little more challenging trails that felt like we were walking on the Stair Master at the gym. Overall, my first snowshoeing experience was a blast and I will most definitely be doing it again!