Category Archives: Health

Eating Lean & Green Cookbook

Hi there lovely people,

Okay, so I’m continuing my theme this week of celebrating the women around me and all the amazing things they are accomplishing!

Today, I wanted you to meet my dear friend, Katie Marreel! You know the friend that is just good at whatever she does…yeah that’s Katie! Creative, brilliant, kind, caring – you know that good to the core kinda person – well, Katie pretty much rocks and I feel super lucky to have had her in my life as a close friend and one of my best brain storming buddies!! Nothing better than another entrepreneurial girl to keep you going! So check this out…

Screen Shot 2015-07-08 at 8.38.25 PM

She has just launched her first cookbook and I couldn’t be more proud! Woo!!!

Screen Shot 2015-07-08 at 7.53.59 PM

openbook_optimied

I have witnessed her toil lovingly over this project for a looong time but the finished product is beyond gorgeous!! Go to her website to check out this beautifully written and photographed (by Katie herself) cookbook. Chock full of delicious, healthy recipes!

So you can get to know her a little better, I decided a little impromptu interview was in order! Just like her book, she’s bursting with great information and healthy tips for busy families and health minded individuals alike!

Okay here goes….So Katie…..

katie-kitchen

What is your personal relationship like with food and fitness? (hint hint…tell us about your story. ;)

My story begins nearly 60 lbs. and 15 years ago with a quest to transform my body into something healthier. The first several years brought many new diets and exercise programs, some of which failed, and others that made their own small contribution to weight loss. Nothing, however, came close to achieving the ultimate goal.  Then I discovered the Medifast 5 & 1 Meal Plan© through Take Shape for Life©. With guidance from my physician, I followed the program and experienced radical results. I lost weight beyond my expectations and built an entirely new relationship with food. Six years later, I’m still maintaining a goal weight. Eating Lean & Green has become a way of life.

My relationship with food and fitness is always changing and growing. There are so many ideas from experts in the field, I find that I am always studying and learning as much as I can. 

When it comes to food, I have learned to think about it as fuel to power my body, and I find deep satisfaction in eating things that are nutritious.  Old emotional eating habits, using food as a reward and a comfort, continue to fade away as new healthier habits take over.  There is no reward sweeter than the satisfaction of having made the right choices!

Fitness is something I have always been passionate about, and I am dedicated to keeping it a regular part of life. I like to change it up and try new things. From yoga and strength training to running and tennis, I’m always keeping my body moving.  Although it can be exhausting in the moment, I know that it does so many healing and restorative things for our bodies. It’s worth every drop of sweat.

What was your inspiration in creating this cookbook?

As a person who has struggled with weight for most of my life, my inspiration comes from a deeply-rooted desire to help others on the same journey.  I am passionate about sharing healthy and nutritious meals that are also incredibly satisfying and delicious.  Losing weight doesn’t have to taste bad!

2627e4c249aaaccd64ffa10669de77bc

e1ce28d960700eedbcd178df7bfea9e7

What are your top three tips for incorporating healthy eating into your everyday family life?

#1:  Plan, plan, plan. It may not be the most fun task, but getting familiar with the nutritional value of your food and making a daily plan is the best thing you can to reach your goals.  I write down all the foods I plan to eat each day before I go to bed. If I’m going out to a restaurant, I will check out the menu online ahead of time and know ahead of time what I am going to order.

#2:  Don’t force it. Learning to be selective with your own foods while offering a few options for others will go a long way to getting them excited about being healthful. Forcing food choices on others will only drive them away from healthy eating.  Not everyone in my house eats on such a restrictive plan as I do, especially the kids who need more carbohydrates. The core of every dinner I cook is a healthy lean and green meal, but I will often serve a starch like beans or grains on the side to make it more satisfying for them. 

#3:  Make a daily habit. Whether you choose to read a book or magazine, listen to a podcast , or go online, spending an hour of time each day thinking about health and nutrition will make a big difference in your ability to incorporate healthy eating into your everyday life.  It will keep you focused and give you a better knowledge base to make wise decisions.

Screen Shot 2015-07-08 at 7.57.09 PM

What changes have you seen within your life and your families by implementing these healthy practices?

One noteworthy change has been in my own sense of identity and being comfortable with my body. Losing weight and maintaining it has brought a great deal of self-confidence and has opened the door to trying lots of new and exciting things in life that I might have been intimidated by otherwise.

The most exciting thing to see is the effect on people around me.  By living out a healthy lifestyle, I get to be an example for others who have a similar goal, but may have lost hope or gotten frustrated in the process.  My conversation often falls into the topics of health and nutrition because it’s something I get really excited about. I love getting to share new ideas about food that show people being healthful can also taste incredibly delicious. It’s a win win!

She’s inspiring right? Katie is so passionate about helping others live a healthier life!

Now don’t be shy…you can visit her at her website or Facebook too! Go say hi! ;)

Thanks for chatting with us Katie! You go girl!

xo,

static1.squarespace.com

4 Comments

Filed under Beauty, Books, celebrate, creativity, entertaining, Food, Friends, Health, News, Stories

Hydrating Rose Oil

The roses are blooming everywhere, so now is a great time to create your very own hydrating rose body oil.

The essential oil of roses is found to be very nourishing, moisturizing and restorative. It is good for almost all skin types and works well even with sensitive skin. The aroma is relaxing and heavenly. You will love making your own rose oil – plus it’s easy!

You’ll need:

1 cup fresh organic rose petals

1 cup sweet almond oil or sesame oil

1 wide mouth glass jar with a lid

Directions:

1. Place roses in jar and gently crush to release their oils

2. Pour the oil over the petals.

3. Secure the lid and place the jar in a dark, cool place for a week.

4. Strain the oil and place into pretty bottle.

5. Apply after bath or shower while skin is still moist.

Enjoy!

xo,

Ivy

Image via Flickr

Leave a comment

Filed under Crafting, essential oils, Health, Recipes

Pineapple Face Mask


Since we came back from Hawaii, pineapple has been my new addiction.

I can’t seem to get enough of it.

I’ve got gobs of fresh pineapple in my fridge so I decided to play around with it and make up a face mask.

Pineapple has a wonderfully skin friendly enzyme in it called Bromelain. It helps shed dead skin cells, brighten skin and has a gentle astringent like quality. Mixed with the moisturizing qualities of honey and the antioxidant power of green tea this mask made my skin feel fantastic.

{Bonus – the green tea and honey are acne fighters too!}

Try it out for a little tropical pampering.

You’ll need:

3-4 slices of fresh pineapple

1 tablespoon organic honey

1 tablespoon green tea

Directions:

Boil water and make a cup of strongly steeped green tea. (I like to steep mine for at least 10 minutes)

Put the pineapple and honey in the blender and mix until smooth. Add the green tea and mix to a paste.

Spread the paste over your clean face and neck. Lie back and relax for 15 minutes.

Rinse with warm water and soft wash cloth. End with a splash of cool water and finish with moisturizer.

Now, go make yourself a Mai Tai or Pina Colada!

xo,

Ivy

Image via: PushShutterSnap via Deviant Art

3 Comments

Filed under Beauty, Health, Recipes

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution

A while ago an adorably quirky and fresh chef came on the scene – The Naked Chef – aka Jamie Oliver.

He’s come a long way from entertaining cook to food revolutionary, changing the food and nutrition in the UK’s school system.

He’s landed on our shores with a mission to do the same thing here…and boy do we need it. Watch as kids try to identify basic vegetables/fruits…it’s sad.

If you haven’t been tuning into Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution…you really should. I could rant and rave, but I won’t.

If you care about what is going into your body and the mouths of your children (and I know you do) check it out.

Catch up with the episodes…here.

Have a lovely Thursday.

xo,

Ivy

4 Comments

Filed under Food, Health, News, Thoughts

Lunch and a Massage…

Went into Ennis yesterday and had lunch out with my mom and Grace at Yesterday’s Pharmacy.

Yes, it’s a Pharmacy slash Diner…I don’t know why…but it’s kinda charming and the milkshakes are delicious. I also love the little mason jars they use for water glasses.

For an extra touch of kitch…they refinished their hardwood floors and decided to put socks on all the chairs and tables to prevent scratching. Upon entering the dining room, Grace loudly announced, “Chairs and tables don’t wear socks! That’s silly!” This bold statement was followed by a healthy dose of giggles.

After that we strolled over to the Montana Wellness Center, where I had my “Raindrop Therapy Massage”.

One word – heavenly.

My lovely massage therapist started me on my back and did some craniosacral work first to “open” me up. I’ve never had this kind of therapy done before and at first I felt nothing. But as she worked her way from my feet to my neck I gradually felt waves of warmth radiate up and down my spine. It was a little alarming at first but then felt very soothing. I was intrigued to say the least.

Following this she proceeded to rub a sequence of powerful essential oils into the arches of my feet. The oils used were:

* Oregano

* Thyme

* Basil

* Cypress

* Wintergreen

* Marjoram

* Peppermint

In addition to these, two essential oil blends were applied. One called Valor to balance energy and a second one called Aroma Seiz to relax the muscles.

After my feet were thoroughly massaged, I flipped over on my tummy. Let the raindrops fall!

Warm drops of oil were dripped on my spine and then lightly massaged using a feathering technique. This continued until all seven oils had been applied to my back, which was very warm at this point. She covered me with a warm damp towel and let me lay there for about ten minutes to allow the oils to penetrate deeply. My body was extremely relaxed as my back heated up quickly. Hot and intense, my skin drank deeply of these amazing oils. When I thought it was almost getting too hot, my whole back went icy cold. It sounds a bit extreme but I promise you it was very soothing. My stess, anxiety and body melted.

When my back had cooled completely she removed the towel and stretched my neck and spine. Sadly…that was the end of my sixty minutes of bliss. I always hate when a massage ends. I did love how I felt though – totally relaxed but also energized. My lower back, which almost always aches, felt calm and soothed.

It’s a totally different experience to a typical massage but for those willing to try something unique I would highly recommend it. The effects of the oils can last as long as a week in the body as they purify, detox and heal.

Anyone can give this treatment once learned, so if you want to teach yourself how to do it check this out. A book about the technique…here.

Have a great Wednesday.

xo,

Ivy

Leave a comment

Filed under essential oils, Health, spas, Stories, Travel

Raindrop Therapy Massage

I decided that before heading back to reality, I needed to get a massage at the local Ennis Spa – the Montana Wellness Center. It’s a tiny little operation but the women who run it are professional, friendly and do wonderful healing work.

A couple of months ago my mom treated herself to their Raindrop Therapy Massage. She said it was blissful…so I signed up.

What is the Raindrop Therapy method?  I had no idea so I looked into it.

Raindrop Therapy, according the spa experts at the Keswick Hall Hotel in Charlottesville, VA  is –

“A specialized aromatherapy massage using over nine essential oils to create both structural and electrical
alignment to the body. Also stimulates physical and emotional harmony and detoxifies the body.”

To read more about it click here.

Needless to say, with my obsession of essential oils, I am eager to experience this.

I will let you know how it was tomorrow.

Have a fabulous Tuesday.

xo,

Ivy

Image via Keswick Hall Hotel

Leave a comment

Filed under essential oils, Health, spas, Stories, Travel