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Monday Motivation: Feel Comfortable

Self Confidence!! Out of the many benefits of working out on a regular basic, this is one of them. It’s a great feeling to step on the scale and see results after all your hard work. Who doesn’t love their clothes to find a little better? Weightloss can certainly improve body image Exercise can improve your mood. It has also for thought to decrease anxiety, stress, and depression! So exercise on!!   

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Monday Motivation: Have Strength

The pain you feel today will be the strength you feel tomorrow. This holds very true with fitness training. Sometimes after pushing yourself through a hard workout you wake up the next morning sore. This mean your muscles are getting stronger!! Congrats to you. Sore Muscles = Progress. Strive for your goals!! 

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Taco Tuesday: DIY Flour Tortillas

Have you ever wanted tacos but didn’t have the soft shells you are wanting? Well here is an easy recipe to follow. It is a bit time consuming but they turn out great!! I have noticed maybe recipes call for oil to be used. Instead of using vegetable or canola oil, I prefer to use extra virgin olive oil.

Olive oil contains more monounsaturated fats which help lower cholesterol. It also contains polyphenol from the olives themselves which contains antioxidant properties. Oil olive is a healthier, less processed option. One of the characteristics of oil olive is its distinct flavor. The flavor in my opinion does take a bit to get used to and can be a bit overpowering. So per my preference, I have cut back some of the olive oil in my recipe and substituted melted butter.

Easy Flour Tortillas:

  1. 3 C Flour
  2. 1 tsp Salt
  3. 1 tsp Baking Powder
  4. 3 T Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  5. 2 T Melted Butter
  6. 1 C Water

1. First you will need to add all the dry ingredients into a bowl and mix together.

2. Add oil and butter, combine. For this step a fork works well.

3. Add water and mix. Knead dough together with hands once it starts to form a ball.

4. Once smooth, divide into 16 formed balls. For this step, I used a pizza cutter to cut the dough into 4 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball, fallen, and repeat. Β Now take each of 16 pieces of dough and roll into individual balls. Place back into mixing bowl.

5. Cover and set in refrigerator for 15-30 minutes for it to set. Do not leave in fridge for longer than 30 minutes as it will make the dough stiff and hard to work with.

6. Pre-heat flat skillet to high heat.

7. Roll dough on lightly floured counter with rolling pin. Roll out until dough reaches 6 inches in diameter. Tip: once to size I used a pot lid to cut dough into a circle shape.

8. Place on hot pan, no grease needed. They will bubble!! Heat until tortilla starts to become lightly brown in some areas. Flip and cook other side. Repeat with remaining dough. Tip: don’t stack tortillas prior to cooking as they will stick to each other.

Tortillas can be stored in a gallon sized Ziploc bag for up to one week. Heat in microwave for 30 seconds to soften after refrigeration. Not only can these tortillas be used for tacos, they work great for snack wraps or thin crust personal pizzas. So many options to choose from!

Enjoy!!

 

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Monday Motivation: Mentality is Everything

Results are not seen overnight. It can be very discouraging when you take the time and effort to workout several times a week and not see results. You try to follow a healthy eating regime and little change is seen. It takes weeks to see results– keep going!! 
You need to fight for yourself and keep on working towards your goals. Remember why you started. You need to make changes in your life for them to happen. Team up with a buddy to help push each other towards your goals. 

Stay focused and stay strong. Don’t give up on yourself. You need to stay mentally strong to have ability push yourself physically. 

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Creamy Garlic Salad Dressing

If you like oil and vinegar salad dressing I have a clean eating recipe for you!! You just blend all the ingredients together and it’s ready in minutes. Many store bought dressings are full of preservatives and sugar. This is much healthier option. You can you a blender or a whisk for this recipe. I used a Magic Bullet which was super easy to you. The best part is that I can store the salad dressing in the same container that I used to blend in by just throw in a lid on it. Hooray for any recipe that creates less dishes!!

So here it is:
Creamy Garlic Salad Dressing

Add all ingredients into Magic Bullet and blend for 15 second. Enjoy.

 

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7 Days in MexicoΒ 

As I had mentioned in previous posts we had been planning a trip to Mexico. Well it finally came! We dropped the kids off at a friend’s house (bless her heart) and headed off to the airport. We had an adults only vacation. There was a total of 8 of us, 3 couples and 2 other guys. We left Minneapolis and arrived in Atlanta, from there we went straight to the island of Cozumel, Mexico. I was excited to the fact that I was able to use my passport for the first time! I coworker’s friend once told me happiness=passport stamps. I can totally see were she is coming with that! Although it was a little hard to be away from the kids, a getaway is a nice break from work, adulting, and all the responsibilities that come with it. With that being said we did have a great time but it sure is nice to be home.

The first day and night was spent with traveling to get there, unpacking our clothes, and deciding what activities to plan for the week. Then it was time to enjoy our vacation! We stayed the week at Sunscapes Saber Resort. It is an all inclusive resort with 4 restaurants and several bars. There are also 2 pools, a gym, spa, a kids club, and many sandy beaches. There are daily activities such as beach volleyball, water polo, and bingo. There was also nightly entertainment in the lounge or pool side theatre. If you did decide to bring your kids, there are many fun things to do around the resort. They would be more then entertained.

During our week stay, we decided to do a couple of activities with other members of our group off of the resort. The two that we did were deep sea fishing and and ATV tour. We didn’t have much lucky fishing but it was still fun to go out on the ocean. We caught one barracuda which one of the crew chopped up and created a bowl of fresh cevechi. I had never tried it before and thought it was pretty good. We unfortunately headed back to shore early due to a couple of the guys on the boat being seasick.

The ATV tour was fun. There was 4 of us that went. We took a short ride through some rough and smooth trails through the jungle. The vegetation was beautiful.

We even stopped at an old cenote which some people in our tour group decided to jump into. The smell of sulfur and the fact of getting wet fettered me from this. No thank you. We got very dusty while riding the ATVs. The business sold bandanas to cover your face with and had sinks available for washing up afterwards. Fun but a little dirty! The free Tequila tasting at the end was a plus!

My favorite thing that we did was rent a vehicle and do some exploring. We took a drive on the opposite side of the island. We were away from the downtown tourism, boating ports, and resorts. The opposite side of the island is protected and development is prohibited. There are miles of untouched jungle and beautiful views of the ocean. There are rocky beaches, one including a nature made swimming pool. There are also a small handful of native shops and restaurants. We took a walk into a large rock where the waves would come crashing into with the change in tides. It was truly amazing! We did stop for a drink a bar where they made slushy drink made of fresh fruit. They literally grabbed fruit out of fruit bowls and sliced it up right there for your drink. Fresh pineapple, mango, papaya, coconuts, limes, ECT. Very neat.

For lunch we ate at The Coconut’s Bar and Grill. We had some amazing cheeseburgers and fries. To get to the restaurant you climb a stone trial where the restaurant sits up on a cliff. The views of the ocean were amazing. It is known as the highest point of Cozumel. You can eat and drink while enjoying views of the ocean. The bar is very neat, their were t-shirts fastened to the ceiling from all over. Also there are parrots, a chamieleon, and crocodile to check out when you are finished eating. It was a wonderful experience. While dining the ladies at our table were gifted a “grasshopper” made from palm tree leaves. We also watched this same gentlemen create a hat, which he then was selling for $25. Very crafty and entertaining. He was very fast at making them and showed great skill.

After some more downtown shopping it was back to the resort. The restaurants there included a Seaside Grill, Buffet, Italian, and Mexican cuisine. We always had many options of food to choose from. From lasanga to chicken fajitas to baked cod, great choices are to be had. At almost all of the spaces outdoor that you eat at, you are visited by these native “cow” birds. They are everywhere on the island. We also would see lizards.

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While on the resort when enjoyed topical drinks daily. The bartenders where great and very knowledgeable. The piΓ±a coladas, mango tango, strawberry daiquiris, and mojitos were our favorite. The bars also had the local beer Dos Equis on tap for any beer drinkers. The swing chairs at the Seaside Bar were fun. Occasionally we would take our drinks to go and walk with them along the beaches or decide to find a lounge chair.

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The resort had sailboats, kayaks, and snorkel gear available until 4pm everyday. The kayaking was fun. We Β also went out snorkeling a handful of times. Under the pier we found many, along with a stingray. The water is very clear and beautiful. The most common fish we seen where Caribbean blue tang, occasionally angelfishes.

Overall we enjoyed our vacation to Mexico thoroughly. The food and drinks where great. We picked up some great souvenirs. And we would recommend others to check it out!

ShrubsΒ 

Today the baby took a nap. Somehow being as tired as I am this week, got some ambition to do some landscaping. I found a few shrubs in our back acreage earlier this week that I thought would be great out by our front porch. I’m not quite sure what these are exactly. From pictures that I’ve seen, I believe these are honeysuckle bushes. Me and my 5 year old dug them up and transplanted them. He was a great helper and my certified hole checker. “So, Is it deep enough now?”. I think they look great and fill in a lot of space. We planted one white one and one pink one. It’s a start to some of our landscaping but we have a lot more work to do.

 

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