Friends, gather round for some easy clean eating shortcuts. I mean, I really love a big fat cheeseburger every now and then, with a Diet Coke. But, the sodas and the burgers don’t usually leave me feeling healthy and energetic, and they definitely don’t leave me feeling swim-suit ready. So, though I’m not hard core or anything close to perfect, I try to stick to a fairly “clean” and wholesome diet most of the time. The definition of “clean eating” might be generally ambiguous, but for me it’s whole grains, fresh lean proteins, plenty of fresh produce, lots of water, less sugar, fewer refined white carbs, fewer preservatives & processing.
It’s not as complicated as you might think, this clean eating thing. Breakfast and snacks seemed to be our weak points, so here I’ve gathered a few of our favorite easy fixes for sprucing up our eating habits.
1. Pancakes. A major favorite at my house. Instead of enriched processed flour and high-sugar mixes, we really love this brand–I’ve found it at Costco and at Sam’s Club. My boys are crazy about it. To amp up the pancakes with extra power I often add mashed banana or a scoop of … >> find out more...
Okay folks, let’s talk cruising. For those of you that have been on a cruise, I’d love to hear your thoughts too. For those of you new to cruising, curious about cruising, not interested in cruising, or simply are turned off by it, scoot a bit closer. I’m talking to you. Frankly, my dear, I used to be you.
I used to scoff at the bulging bulk of all those ships. I would turn my nose up at the blatant hedonistic buffets, and masses of humanity that would lazily float, nay, sludge through our oceans. I was afraid I would go stir-crazy, and feel trapped on a ship. I was skeptical about how much I would really see at port. Is a cruise really worth it?
Then I went on a cruise with my family, and I was changed.
My husband’s best friend had been trying to get us to cruise with them for years. They’ve been cruising for about half their lifetime, and their boys have been on more cruises than years they’ve been alive. So they are obvious fans.
In 2011, after a lot of research we embarked on our first cruise with our friends. I hope … >> find out more...
It’s time you learned how to put your hair in a bun. You can do it! Hair is a tough thing, sometimes. I mean, we’ve all got to live with whatever hair we we were born with. And deal with it every single day. Let’s be honest, sometimes we resort to pulling into a pony tail, or tucking it under a hat, or pulling it into a messy to-knot style bun. At least that’s on trend, right?
However, a top knot isn’t for everyone, so today I’ve got a tutorial for a very simple everyday bun that you can do in maybe 10 minutes flat. It’s easy, cute and people will think you spent quite a bit more time than you actually did!
Another benefit of this simple hair style? You can wear it on dirty hair. In fact, most styles look great with dirty hair! A little dry shampoo and tease at the roots and you will be good to go. Here’s the break down of how to do it.
… >> find out more...
- I didn’t show it here, but you can start by teasing the crown and the sides of your hair. A little dry shampoo can never hurt!
- Start by separating
Guys, it’s house cleaning central over here these days. I’m a cleaning / organizing / tidying fool, and I’ll tell you what: my house has never looked better.
If you’re new to this challenge, let me catch you up to speed. This year I’m tackling one organizing project at a time in my house, in an effort to help my life become more tidy and simplified.
In the end simplification + tidiness = happier everyone.
Read the beginning of the project Organizing Your House One Week At A Time here, and Organizing Your House Week Two here. Then come back, and we’re about to get all tackle-y in here in Organizing Your House Week Three.
Are you ready to jump on the bandwagon? Please say yes. There’s strength in numbers, I really believe that to be true, and I’d really love you on my team. It keeps us all accountable to know there’s someone, somewhere out there, doing the same fun cleaning + organizing extravaganza.
And it is FUN, I can assure you of that! Even if my idea of fun has shifted a bit in my more *cough* mature years. A Friday night sorting and organizing old makeup? Sign … >> find out more...
Nostalgia is something that waxes strong in me, so I have a great affinity for actual, physical photographs. However, most of the pictures for my generation exist on Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Tumblr, Twitter, etc.; in other words, they exist on screens and in “clouds”.
For the most part, I think the cyber-plane that all of these images exist on is amazing. I think it is amazing that I can see my friends hiking in Hawaii if I look at Facebook for 3 seconds, and I think it is amazing that I can see the dressing room magic of the eyebrows of Cara Delevingne just by looking at Instagram. I think that the way people stay connected in real life and in real time is a remarkable and uplifting thing.
But for all this, I still want something to hold on to. I want to feel connected to what happened yesterday, or last summer, or when I was six. An actual, physical photo. So, I’m still using one of my favorite Christmas gifts: the Canon “SELPHY” Wireless Printer. There are quite a few printers that do what this one does (Fujifilm Instax Printer, Smartphone Photo Cube, Polaroid Zip, etc.) but I … >> find out more...
Dublin! Have you ever been there? I have. For a day. Seriously. We were in Ireland visiting friends, and we had one day as a family to explore. Cliffs or Dublin? We chose Dublin, because the hazy, rainy day would have blocked any beautiful views of the cliffs. I guess we’ll have to go back someday.
First bit of helpful information you will receive today…how to get there. Since we were already in England, we opted to rent a car and take the ferry over to Dublin. It was such a fun experience for my kids! We took the StenaLine which was fantastic. There was plenty to keep the kids entertained.
I found Dublin to be a quaint little city. It lacked that hustle and bustle which was just fine with me. My husband was happy because there were so many people that looked like him…red hair, freckles, and fair skin!
When you only have a day, you have to plan wisely. Of course, we didn’t do everything we wanted (another reason to go back), but I’d say we covered a fair bit to etch a memory. Here’s what we did and my take on the experience.
1. Visited Trinity … >> find out more...
This post about love is sponsored by Fox Searchlight Pictures, presenting The Second Best Marigold Hotel, in theaters this weekend. #LoveBlooms Thank you for being generous and kind to Petit Elefant sponsors.
In thinking about the release of The Second Best Marigold Hotel, I’ve been pondering both my life love + my love of travel. Read on to discover how they’re both about to merge at the intersection of fate and awesome.
I love travel more than life itself. Life is travel, to me anyway. Some of the best moments of my life have been in weird hotel rooms or tiny apartments or huts scattered across America and assorted random spots on the globe. There’s really something to be said for leaving the comfort of home to discover parts of yourself previously unknown.
I highly recommend taking brave adventures as far as your pocketbook can carry you; you might be surprised what you find inside yourself.
The first time I traveled outside the United States was my junior year in high school. I was 16 years old and had never even seen a passport when I drove to the post office in our 1980’s beat-up, forest green, … >> find out more...
Anyone else dreaming of summer like I am? There is nothing better than spending a day in the hot sun at the pool or the beach. Preferably with a cold beverage in hand. And a good book to read. It all sounds so perfect! I love that packing for a beach weekend means packing light. Just a few essentials and I’m good to go.
Luckily I am headed to Mexico this week for a quick getaway with my husband and some of our friends! I can’t wait! I’ve rounded up a few MUST-HAVE’s for a weekend getaway in the sun! Check these beauties out!
1. Tie Dye Cover Up from Forever 21: Cutest cover up ever! Looks comfy too.
2. Tanning Lotion with SPF 15 from Coppertone: This is my favorite sunscreen when I want a little bit of color but also don’t want to look like a lobster at the end of the day!
3. Embroidered Bag from ASOS: How fab is this bag? Perfect for holding all of your beach needs!
4. Botanical Maxi Dress from ASOS: I love ASOS dresses! They always run true to size and they are adorable!
5. Twist Scarf from Ban.do… >> find out more...
// This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of YLighting, YLiving, YBath. All opinions, naturally, are my own. //
We’ve been busy behind the scenes at Casa Czarnecki over the last couple of years, redecorating and remodeling, sledgehammering walls and ripping out old flooring, and finally, FINALLY after our epic Master Bathroom Remodel, we’re moving onto the attached Master Bedroom.
I couldn’t be more excited.
Our master bedroom has been woefully outdated, with dirty textured ceilings, weird circular windows, a tan-ish brown wall paint, and forest green carpet pulling up at the corners of the room. There have been many nights where I’ve been tempted to grab a couple of blankets and a soft pillow and head to the pretty, shiny and new en suite bathroom to make a cozy little bed in the jetted tub of the master bath.
Luckily, it hasn’t come to that.
We finally put in new flooring and painted the walls of the bedroom a gorgeous, simple grey, and now it’s time to talk about decorating the old place.
It’s absolutely amazing what a fresh coat of paint and a new floor can do for a room. We still … >> find out more...