Delicious Banana Bread

Delicious Banana Bread

This recipe is a crowd pleaser! It is moist and delicious, and easy to make. Recipe is by Elise Bauer from Simply Recipes.

Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 55 minutes Yield: Makes one loaf

Ingredients

  • 2 to 3 very ripe bananas
  • 1/3 cup melted butter, unsalted or salted
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • Pinch of salt
  • 3/4 cup sugar (1/2 cup if you would like it less sweet)
  • 1 large egg beaten
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
  • Optional- Cinnamon, Nuts, Chocolate morsels

Method

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 *F (175*C) and butter a 4×8 inch loaf pan
  2. In a mixing bowl, mash the ripe bananas with a fork until completely smooth. Stir the melted butter into the mashed bananas.
  3. Mix the baking soda and salt. Stir in the sugar, beaten egg and vanilla extract. Mix in the flour.
  4. Pour the batter into your prepared loaf pan. Bake for 50 minutes to 1 hour at 350*F (175*C), or until a tester inserted into the center comes out clean.
  5. Remove from oven and let cool in the pan for a few minutes. Then remove the banana bread from the pan and let cool completely before serving. Slice and serve.

Supplements That Make a Difference

Supplements That Make a Difference

As I am getting older, I have been intrigued to take vitamins and supplements to improve my overall health.  I have noticed that my body is requiring extra nutrients that I may not be consuming on the daily with my hectic schedule. I was recommended Hum Vitamins and a couple of others that have great feedback. I decided to give them a try. I took supplements for 2 months straight and let me tell you I feel great!

Hum Nutrition

After reading the rave reviews online and eye-catching bottles, I decided to give them a try.  For starters, you are assigned a nutritionist and take a quiz to figure out what are the best supplements for you. I was suggested 4 different supplements and was offered a 15% discount for buying 3.  Their prices are comparable to others supplements in the market. I like the convenience of changing out my supplements to fit my current needs and having them delivered. They are offering a $10 discount if you use 23CB0A.

Big Chill- Rhodiola rosea root extract

Claims to help you cope with and remove the signs of stress. I was skeptical about this one, how can a little pill help with stress?  I took it for a month and during stressful events I felt levelheaded and not frazzled or irked.  I decided to not use it for a month thinking the other supplements were giving me the benefits and I was WRONG!   During the month of not using it I reverted to feeling anxious during stressful events.  I have this one on auto ship and highly recommend it.

Moody Bird- Dong quai & chaste berry

Claims to help maintain healthy hormonal balance and alleviate symptoms of PMS.  I have suffered from a hormonal imbalance and during a menstrual cycle my cramps have been intense. I noticed that this helps minimize my cramps to one day vs three, with minor discomfort.  The color of my flow was very bright and overall improved.  It did not lessen the length of time of my flow. 

Daily Cleanse- Green algae & detox herbs

Claims to help clear your skin and body from toxins.  I have had acne from my teens to adult hood.  I feel that this supplement in conjunction with juicing three times a week to aid in the detox of my liver has minimized my breakouts.

Turn back Time- Polypodium Leucotomos, Vitamin C, Alpha Lipoic Acid, Green Tea extract, Turmeric Extract & Lutein

Claims to provide UV damage control and age defying skin cell protection.  I have noticed that my small wrinkles are at bay and have decided to skip Botox for now. I do wear sunscreen and a hat to protect myself from the sun.

Organic Ashwagandha- referred to as Indian ginseng

Fortifies the adrenal function, energy and stress levels.  This is my new favorite!  I have had issues trying to quiet my mind and have restful sleep.  My mind races with things I need to accomplish for the week, which results to tossing and turning for hours.  I take this supplement one hour prior to bed and my mind has finally quiet down and given me restful sleep. 

Krill Oil- source of omega 3

Claims to reduce high triglyceride levels, relieving rheumatoid arthritis, relieving dry eye symptoms, and support brain function.  Studies have claimed that krill oil may be superior to fish oil.  I love that this does not have a fishy after taste and the pill is a small soft gel.  I have not noticed any changes while taking this but will continue to take it for now.

Stylish Summer Dresses Under $40

Stylish Summer Dresses Under $40

These fun summer dresses come in different colors and patterns. I love that they are affordable and easy to style for any summer outing. There is an outfit for any gal, sizes can range from extra small to 4x.

Amazon $28.99 ~ Extra Small – XX Large

Amazon $32.99 ~ Extra Small – 4X

Amazon $31.99 ~ Small – XX Large

Amazon $33.99 ~ Extra Small – 3X

Amazon $29.65 ~ Small – X Large

Amazon $29.99 ~ 0X – 4X

Amazon $25.99 ~ Extra Small – 3X

Amazon $29.99 ~ Extra Small – XX Large

Amazon $28.99 ~ 0X – 4X

Amazon $28.99 ~ 0X – 4X

Fun Stay At Home Kid Activites

Fun Stay At Home Kid Activites

Meet Melanie! She is a family friend from New Mexico, she is an Applied Behavioral Analysis Therapist for children.  Mel has shared some of her students’ favorite activities that are fun for all ages.

Scavenger Hunt

Everyone loves a surprise! You can use items around your home.  Hide the grand prize around the house.  This activity stimulates their minds and keeps their bodies active.

Make Your Own Bingo

Great for any age! You can make a variety of topics for your bingo cards depending on the age of your child.

Examples: 

  • You can practice letters
  • Practice reading (vocabulary words)
  • Set up trivia questions and answers

Popsicle Ice Cream Stand

You can either buy popsicle molds or you can use a silicone cube tray and stick popsicle sticks in them to freeze into mini popsicles.  A few ideas:

  • Add vanilla ice cream and orange juice
  • Juice with fresh fruit
  • Yogurt with fresh fruit
  • Tasty Smoothie

Painting

Who does not love painting? Use washable paint to paint paper plates and add macaroni’s to make fun designs.  Sponge cut outs make it fun for little ones or hand paint.

Food

See what you have in your refrigerator and pantry and create food art!

Example:

  • Clouds-Whipped cream
  • Sun- Gold fish crackers
  • Flower Petals- Cuties
  • Center Flower- Blueberries
  • Stem-Cucumber slices
  • Leaves- Spinach
  • Dirt-Crushed chocolate cookies

Messy Fun Quicksand

A science project that helps explain and talk about quicksand! When pressure is applied to the mixture it gets thicker, but when pressure is released…. (find out what happens)

Ingredients:

  • Mix 2 cups of corn starch
  • Add food coloring (will temporarily dye fingers for the day)
  • 1 cup of water

Best Beauty Organizers Under $30

Best Beauty Organizers Under $30

Having a designated place to display and organize my makeup and accessories has made it easier for me to find my things and keep them clean. I love that all these Amazon products are affordable and look good with any type of room decor.

Cosmetic Organizer & Jewelry Display $27.99

This affordable organizer can be stacked or separated to hold cosmetics and jewelry. The different compartments allows for you to keep the products separated and coordinated.


Makeup Mirror $23.99

A mirror with great lighting facilitates applying makeup when the lighting is not optimal.


Makeup Storage Containers $11.99

Storage containers fit well in drawers to keep your products in plain view and organized.


Bean Bag Filler $4.99

If you want your makeup brushes to stand up, fill your makeup brush holder with some bean bag filler to do the trick.


Makeup Brush Holder $5.99

This brush holder is very economical, can hold a variety of brushes.


Beauty Blender Holder $6.29

A two pack of beauty blender holders for less than $7.00! You can keep your blenders clean and dry with these cute holders.


Stackable Headband & Hair Accessory Holder $15.50

You can separate or stack the holders and put any accessories, products or jewelry in place. When you stack the holders your headbands can be neatly stacked.

Trader Joe’s Products You Will Love

Trader Joe’s Products You Will Love
  1. Salsa Verde- For $1.99 you cannot go wrong with this delicious green salsa.  It tastes great with eggs, tacos, and meats.  I purchase four every time I shop.
  2. Egg Salad- If you like egg salad this one is a winner! It is great with Dave’s killer bread for a quick lunch.
  3. Almond or Chocolate Croissants- These are crowd pleasers with every person I recommend.  They taste so buttery and crispy, excellent with your favorite coffee or hot chocolate.
  4. Cookie Butter- This spread taste like shortbread biscuits. You can spread this on toast, pancakes, waffles and apples.  It literally makes anything taste better.
  5. Milk Chocolate or Dark Chocolate Mini Pretzels- These pretzels have a great chocolate flavor and crunchy pretzel. I love that the package has a resealable bag.
  6. Dark Chocolate Covered Banana Slices- When you are in the mood for a sweet bite reach for these frozen chocolate banana slices.  Kids will want to eat the whole box.
  7. Rose Water Facial Toner- This toner is hydrating, refreshing with a subtle rose fragrance. If you do not want to splurge on expensive rose water toners, I recommend giving this one a try.

A Girl’s Guide To Craft Beer

A Girl’s Guide To Craft Beer

Do you have that friend that you can bank on having a good time?  Let me introduce you to my friend Megan!  We have been friends for over 10 years and counting.  Megan is my go-to for fun, good food and drink recommendations.  She enjoys strong tasty drinks and laughs.  Megan has shared four of her favorite craft beers and mead for any gal to venture. Cheers!

Modern Times Dragon Mask


Strongest in alcohol, this tasty beer is aged in maple bourbon barrels for 18 and 24 months.  Carrying notes of chocolate, caramel, brown sugar, and maple, this is great to sip as an after-dessert drink.

6oz- 22oz

ABV 13.9%

VEGAN

BEER STYLE- American Imperial Stout

BEER TYPE-Dark Lager

BODY -Strong full bodied 

TASTE -Slight maple sweetness

Modern Times Starbelt


Less carbonation than some, this a hoppy refreshing Heidelberg Pilsner. It evokes notes of lime zest, lemon peel, and orange.  Great to pair with seafood or when having a BBQ.

4pk-16 oz

ABV 5.2%

VEGAN

BEER STYLE- German Pilsner

BEER TYPE- Hoppy Lager

BODY- Light

TASTE-  Mild easy to drink

Homage Brewing Dark Fantasy


Like a stout this is made from roasted malts. Pairs well with smoked meats, bratwurst and tri-tip

4pk

ABV  5%

BEER STYLE- German Schwarzbier

BEER TYPE- Dark Lager  

BODY –  Medium body

TASTE – Moderate to high bitterness

Modern Times Ice Pilsner with Lime and Sea Salt


Hopped with Czech Saaz (gives aromatic additions) and Australian Summer hops packs flavor. Great to drink cold on a hot day or lounging by the pool.

6pk- 12oz Cans

ABV   4.8%

VEGAN

BEER STYLE- German Pilsner

BEER TYPE- Light Lager

BODY- Light-bodied

TASTE- Refreshing, Toasty, Crisp

Honey Pot Meadery Rubus Cube


Raspberries, vanilla and meadowfoam honey (light marshmallow flavor) make this a rich pleasing dessert drink. A little can go a long way, this is great to enjoy with friends or on a dinner date.

6oz bottle

ABV 12.9%

STYLE- Dessert Mead

TYPE – Honey wine

BODY – Strong full bodied

TASTE- Tart yet sweet

ORANGETHEORY CHANGED MY BODY

ORANGETHEORY CHANGED MY BODY

I got to admit I was hesitant on trying out Orangetheory, it seemed intimidating to work out with a group of people knowing I was not in the best shape. My usual fitness routine was attending Zumba and organized classes at 24-hour fitness.  After having my second child I was not seeing the results I use to and I decided to try out Orangetheory’s complimentary class.  Wow! I was ignited, the music was on point and members were hyping one another.  I burned 500 calories in one hour and felt exhilarated, sign me up!  


PHOTO TAKEN ONE YEAR APART

What Is Orangetheory?

It is a one-hour group fitness workout that includes both cardio and strength training. The workouts are different every day, and a coach guides you throughout the entire workout. 

Their websites states, their workouts are based on the EPOC system “Exercise Post Oxygen Consumption.” One hour work out is designed to produce 12 minutes or more of intensities at 84% or higher. A “afterburn” effect is produced for an increased metabolic rate up to 36 hours after the workout.

Their workouts are based on endurance, strength and power.  It is important to wear a heart monitor which you can purchase at the studio to track your data for every workout.  Each member’s heart rate will be displayed on television screens showing how many calories everybody is burning and what color zone each person is at.  

There are five color zones:

  • Grey- resting phase
  • Green- 71-83% base pace, comfortable
  • Orange- 84-91% push pace, uncomfortable but doable
  • Red- 92% all-out effort (you are out of breath)

When your heart rate gets to the orange and red zones combined you start accumulating “splat points.” Your goal is to get 12 or more splat points which equals 12 minutes spent in those zones.

SAMPLE OF MY AFTER CLASS STATS

Working Out 

Classes are offered through their mobile app and you must sign up in order to attend.  They have several different coaches that teach different time slots.  The early riser class starts at 5am and for the late-night crew last class is at 8:15pm.  The workouts are broken into two or three groups depending on the class size. One group will start on the treadmills and another group will start on the water rowers. These two groups are doing the guided cardio portion of the class.   The last group or portion of the class is the strength training room.  The coaches will demonstrate the workouts and television monitors display the exercises and rep range.  The floor exercises use free weights, resistance bands, benches, trx straps and ab dolly.  It may seem intimidating at first, but the coaches do a great job modifying exercises to fit anyone’s current physical conditions. I would recommend trying the free class.

MEET CECY AND GEORGE

MEET CECY AND GEORGE

Cecy and George started off as my husband’s coworkers many years ago. We have become good friends over the years, and I have admired how they both find the time yearly to travel with and without their family. Can you believe Cecy and George have four kids ranging from 11 to 23! They are a delightful couple that has managed amongst life demands to plan and travel to beautiful destinations. I had asked Cecy what motivates her to explore countries? She stated, ” Travel to find yourself, not to get away.” She shared some of her most memorable destinations and travel recommendations. 


SANTORINI

OIA

WHERE TO STAY, DINE & EXPLORE

Photo Credit: Trip Advisor

STAYGemela’s AirBnB in Oía. They have two separate apartments sharing a veranda and pool along the caldera overlooking the ocean.

EAT- Black Rock Restaurant has the best sunsets while enjoying delicious grilled seafood.

EXPLOREAtlantis Books-Just past the “rent a cat” sign you will walk down spiral stairs into a magical vortex of books. Wooden bookshelves creviced into the curvature of the building. Found a book? Venture to their rooftop to enjoy a book overlooking the blue sea.

Gaia Wines- Experience a winery on the beach and after head to Kamari beach, a 10 minute walk for local White Donkey beer.


AMSTERDAM

Photo Credit For Hotel: Trip Advisor

STAY- Ambassade Hotel gives you convenient access to quaint shops and is within walking distance to the tram stop. The property boast beautiful comfortable canal view rooms.

EATCut Throat Barber, Brunch & Bar is great for a bite to eat or coffee and hair cut right after.

Kitchen & Bar Van Rijn is a beautiful modern restaurant, the strawberry mojito is a must try!

EXPLORE– Walk or rent a bicycle to explore the dazzling canals and architectural wonders.


MONACO

Photo Credit: Trip Advisor

STAY- Monte Carlo Bay Hotel Resort is a beautiful stay for infinite ocean views

PARTY- Nikki Beach Club is on the pricier side, this destination is similar to an outdoor club where you can enjoy cocktails, music and a party atmosphere.

EAT- Brasserie du Cafe de Paris for friendly attentive staff and delicious food.

To see where else Cecy and George have traveled you can find their adventures on instagram @cecy.gets.lost