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Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Books I Recommend You Read [April]

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New month, new books! Check 'em out!

Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver
This was an amazing book where each time Sam wakes up it's the same day (Groundhog Day much?) and it is supposed to lead to an unfortunate accident at the end of the day.  So each day she tries to change the outcome by living that day differently.  Will it work finally?

This Is Where It Ends by Marieke Nijkamp
This is actually in the teen book section but it was an amazing read between 4 people's points of view during a school shooting and how they are tied to the person behind the gun.

Marlena by Julie Buntin
This book was amazing.  It's basically a story about two girls that have a very strong bond even though the one's life ends tragically but it shows how profound an impact we can have on one another.  This reminds me of my own life and my best friend that I lost to a similar circumstance many years ago.

I Was Here by Gayle Forman
This was a beautiful read, even though it's in the teen section.  It's basically about a girl trying to get to the bottom of her best friend's suicide, looking for someone to blame and in the end she learns a huge lesson.

The Way I Used To Be by Amber Smith
OMG this book was amazing! It shows the long term impacts of rape and how it can affect pretty much every aspect of the victim's life.  

Firefly Lane by Kristin Hannah
Holy crap.  This book.   It's a coming of age novel about two girls and their wild friendship and how it evolves over a 30 year period.  Even though it has a very tough ending it's extremely realistic and really had a deep impact on me. MUST READ!

The Arrangement by Sarah Dunn
Oh my God this BOOK!!!!!!!   It was excellent.  It's about a couple that decides to have an open marriage for a 6 month period. Things happen that they don't plan for and it's such a beautiful and honest telling of what happens in real life when people do this stuff.  What an amazing book!

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Monday, April 24, 2017

Outfit of the Day: A Rose By Any Other Name...

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I used to never be a big fan of roses when it came to floral print but for some reason I've grown to adore them.  So these adorable leggings from LuLaRoe have pink roses with green leaves and it looked perfect paired with a knotted forest green Carly.

I really do love floral prints but there is something with roses that are even more feminine and beautiful.
Do you like floral print or is it something you never feel right in?

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Friday, April 21, 2017

Deal With Debt And Stop Stressing!

Debt is a seriously bad problem - not necessarily if it is small and manageable, but when payment of debts needs to be organized over a longer time frame - it can be a serious worry. There are already enough things in our lives that can worry us - such as physical and emotional stress, so we don't really need debt on top of this pile. However, the reality is that most people will experience debt of some sort during their lives. Some might say that the financial system is rigged against them, while others say that if you're in debt, then it is your own fault - the truth is somewhere inbetween, debt is simply a part of modern day life.

Now debt can affect us in many ways - which is why it is crucial to extinguish it. Talking financially, debt can ruin our credit rating making it much harder for us to push forward with our lives as we will be turned down for loans and mortgages - meaning financial clout will have to come from our incomes and savings. It can also build easily, ruining your finances as debt collection agents chase high levels of interest that increase debts over time. Debts can also cause a lot of other problems. They can exacerbate mental health conditions and increase our levels of stress or anxiety - making debt a recipe for emotional disaster.
It's easy to lose control with debt thanks to stress and the lack of regulations over spending. That can lead to the situation as unfortunately, stress and anxiety don't often spark any sort of movement to resolve the situation. Debt is a situation that requires you to resolve it. Otherwise, it will get worse.
So if you are in any kind of debt - you need to get a handle on the situation so you can work to resolve it. It will take time and money, but it is not impossible. It's not a black hole that one can't escape from. To pay your debts off, you need to get the information you need - mainly how large your debts are, and the time it would take you to pay them back. Then you need to budget, and budget hard. You'll need to spend a lot less than you earn to ensure you can devote a lot of cash into working for you and paying your debts off. Are there better ways to manage debt? Certainly - you can find info on debt consolidation companies, and you should also call up the companies you are indebted to try and negotiate payments. This might also result in a reduction in the amount of money you have to pay back. Negotiating is always worth it. Attempting to find a payment resolution is something that these companies want from you.

The effects of debt grow and multiply if you ignore them - but it is so easy to run away from our problems. Stand up to debt, deal with it, and you’ll have a lot less to stress about

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"Fatting" Fit? How Fat Can Be Your Friend

The battle against the bulge is something we’ve all got to contend with, and while the information we’re told about weight loss is to cut down on the dreaded “F” word – fats! But, in fact, more information is coming to light about why fat isn’t as bad for you as was once thought. The debates around the diet that we perceive to be healthy might not be as good for you as you think. The gospel of a diet high in carbs with a low amount of fat has been linked to many health epidemics. In the western world, the amount of diabetes and obesity has seen a massive increase over the last 30 years, round about the same time as the low-fat phenomenon was beginning to take shape. The low-fat alternatives to every foodstuff you see on the shelves are loaded with sweeteners and sugar to replace the lack of taste. As the debate on fats gains momentum, let’s have a look at the reasons why we can use fat in our diet to make ourselves healthier, but also to help us lose weight.

Fat Keeps Us Feeling Fuller
Feeding our body with sugar and excessive amounts of carbohydrates increases our hunger. Here comes the science part! There are two hormones related to hunger, leptin and ghrelin. Firstly, ghrelin is a hormone that increases your appetite, and leptin is one that suppresses your appetite. Fat has been shown to increase your leptin hormone, and it won't send a signal to your brain saying that you need to eat something!

Fat Stops Unnecessary Cravings
As a result of feeling fuller for longer, your cravings for lots of processed foods will naturally decrease. When you eat a high dose of carbs, your blood sugar spikes, meaning that your pancreas pumps out insulin, which is the body’s response to high blood sugar. When your pancreas works overtime and eventually gives up on you, this is how you get diabetes. Fat also contains more energy per gram than any other nutrient, which gives you a perfect reason to pick up the butter. Fat also slows the absorption of carbohydrates and good quality fats also contain fat-soluble vitamins, like vitamins K, D, A, and E, so you should be eating fat at every meal to make the most of the vegetables you should be consuming!

Fat Helps Us To Lose Weight
There are dieticians out there that are talking about the high-fat diet, but a major piece of information in this whole diet is to limit your carb intake. Fats should ideally make up around 70 to 75% of your daily intake, 15 to 20% should come from protein, and only 5 to 10% should come from carbs. By reducing your carb intake, you will naturally be providing your body with less sugar, which when unused, turns into fat. As fat makes you feel full, you will naturally begin to lose weight, without feeling the horrible hunger cravings that come with a low-calorie, low-fat diet.

Now, while there many people that think the idea of mainly consuming fat is a complete waste of your sophisticated palate, there are ways to get a perfectly balanced diet into the mix. For those that are on a high-fat diet, consuming butter, cheese, cream, and heavy milk can get old fast. But there are ways around it. There are so many people that love their sweet treats for example and satisfying that sugar craving is a big thing to get nailed down, especially when starting a new diet. This is where fat bombs come into play. For many people who have a constant battle with the sugary side of life, the fat bomb has been a little life saver. The high quantities of fat in a typical fat bomb recipe, along with a sneaky sweetness in the form of a dollop of maple syrup or some high-quality dark chocolate helps to remove the desire for lashings of sugar in every dessert. There are many great recipes to find online, and here is one of my personal favorites. If eating little balls of fat isn’t your idea of a great dessert and you are looking for other things, you can make the gradual change from your dessert of choice and make swaps in your ingredients to make the transition less noticeable. You can make an easy chocolate mousse which has cream, eggs, and dark chocolate with a hint of sweetness as ingredients. As you get used to the richness of the dessert, you can reduce the sweetness to the point where you won't notice it as much and enjoy the sumptuous flavors instead!

The trick with eating high-fat, as with any change in your eating habits, is to make the food as appealing as possible to your senses. The way to do this is to mix it up a lot. The high-fat diet can become on the repetitive side, but if you can find ways to mix it up, it will be much more interesting for you. Breakfast can consist of bacon and eggs, and coffee with full-fat cream. Lunch can be a small piece of chicken with vegetables (covered in butter) and then an evening meal can be a piece of steak with some sautéed potatoes and green beans (to get your minimal amount of carbs in). Then the next day can be steak and eggs for breakfast, smoked salmon with home-made hollandaise sauce for lunch and then Mediterranean-style tapas for your evening meal, consisting of olive oil, sundried tomatoes, various cheeses, and meats.

Fish, eggs, and meat are always on the menu and the fattier the cuts, the better. And always go for organic wherever possible, such as grass-fed beef or freshly caught fish from the sea. It can cost a bit more than normal, but with the money, you’d normally be spending on sweet treats you can invest in food that makes you feel fuller for longer and far more satisfied. You will also have so much more energy, and you will find yourself “fatting fit!”

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Natural Help for Anxiety

Natural Help for Anxiety
It's normal to feel anxious from time-to-time, that's just a part of life for most people. Maybe you've lost your job, the kids are struggling in school, you're facing a health crisis, or something else is going on in your life. Whatever it is, reaching for a prescription medication doesn't have to be your first line of defense. Stress and anxiety are normal, everyone goes through ups and downs, but learning how to manage anxiety naturally is an important part of helping to get you back to feeling more like yourself.
Natural Supplements to Help Reduce Anxiety
There are many ingredients found in nature that can be used to help reduce anxiety. For example, lemon balm, hops, and valerian are all natural herbal substances that have been known to have a sedative and calming effect on people. Similarly, L-theanine, an amino acid found in green tea, has also been shown to help reduce anxiety.
The problem with many of these natural remedies is that it can be hard to get enough of the beneficial components in order to produce the desired calming effect. Fortunately, natural supplements, such as RediCalm, can allow you to take a simple capsule and reap the natural anxiety reducing benefits. Many people are now turning to natural supplements in order to find the stress relief they need.
Exercise for Stress Relief
While stress is an inevitable part of life, managing stress with exercise can be very effective. You can't eliminate stress and anxiety altogether, but you can often learn to manage it without medications. With just 20 to 30 minutes of aerobic activity, you'll not only feel better, but you'll also reduce your level of anxiety. Exercise produces endorphins which not only act as painkillers, but they also help improve sleep which naturally leads to less anxiety and stress.
Breathing Exercises can Help with Anxiety
There are a number of breathing exercises that can be done to help alleviate anxiety. Deep breathing is a fast and effective way to reduce stress because it sends signals to your brain to relax. Breathing exercises help reduce tension, anxiety, and stress.
Find one or two deep breathing exercises and practice them until you are comfortable with how they're done. Then, when you feel anxiety rising, take a moment to calm yourself with these breathing techniques.
Yoga can Help Restore Your Inner Calm
Practicing yoga has long been a common method for reducing stress and anxiety. When you focus your attention on your breathing and body movements, you release tension which leads to a reduction in anxiety.
Diet can Play a Key Role in Reducing Stress and Anxiety
What you eat can significantly impact your level of anxiety. For example, most people are aware of the fact that caffeine and sugar can be stimulants. Clearly, when you're consuming stimulants, it's harder for your body to relax. Similarly, alcohol, fried foods, and even acid forming foods, such as pickles, eggs, and yogurt, can also contribute to an increase in anxiety.
On the other hand, eating fresh fruits and vegetables can help reduce anxiety. Additionally, foods rich in magnesium or Omega-3 fatty acids can also be helpful in reducing levels of anxiety.
When you combine a good eating plan with stress relieving exercise and a quality supplement, such as RediCalm, you can reduce anxiety, stress, and insomnia.
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