Ask Away Blog: May 2016

Multitasking Hacks for Everyday Wellness

Tuesday, May 31, 2016



This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser.  All opinions are mine alone. #CentrumFunFlavors #CollectiveBias

So most of us think of multitasking when it comes to work tasks, errands, or chores around the house but multitasking can be used for everything in life including diet and physical activity.  Seriously!!

I am a busy busy girl.  I work full time, run my blog, take care of 4 dogs, have weekly errands and cleaning for my home, have plenty of friends to keep in touch with, have a full blown vegetable garden, a weekly fitness routine, AND a plethora of TV shows to stay caught up with.  Sure all these things may not be necessary in my life but I love them and they bring me joy. 

So why in the world would I ever want to stop doing some of them?  Instead, I embrace all my duties and my busy life and I multitask in a variety of ways for all aspects of my life.  So I'm going to show you exactly how it's done so you can do the same in your own life!



|Exercise + TV Shows|
I looooove my TV shows.  I can't even tell you how many I keep up with because there are literally just too many.  The only time that would ever be a problem is if I decide to sit and watch TV more often than I am physically active.  It's important to stay active.  I need to burn calories and break a sweat in order to get rid of all the stress and toxins from my day.  So instead of sitting on the couch to watch TV, I have a small TV in my basement gym where I can lift weights and use my elliptical all while watching TV.  Don't be fooled though, because this isn't JUST benefitting me for catching up on my shows, it also keeps me motivated to work out.  Rather than focus on how hard it is, I focus on the TV so that I get distracted and don't start obsessing over how many minutes I have left on the elliptical.




|Meal Planning + Budgets|
You should know by now that I am a huge fan of budgeting and every part of my life revolves around a budget.  So it should be no surprise to you that I balance my need to budget around my planned meals for the week.   I don't ever buy more than I need at the store because I only ever buy exactly what I need for each recipe for the upcoming week.  My grocery list is based off of my meals for the week and because of that I never spend extra money on impulse buys.  This is a great multitasking hack not just for my budget and saving time on figuring out what to eat, but also for my health.  I am able to plan healthier meals instead of impulsively ordering a pizza.










|Fashion + Time|
Being fashionable and looking put together can actually be very time consuming.  That's why I like to make a small effort ahead of time when it comes to my wardrobe.  Every Sunday I choose and set out all my outfits for the upcoming work week.  I even pick out the shoes and jewelry I'll wear each day so that when I'm getting ready for work in the morning I don't even have to use my brain to choose what to wear. 


|Being a Human and Being Healthy|
We are ALL human which means we make mistakes.  Sometimes we don't have the time, knowledge, or discipline to make the perfect choices for our diet.  I try my hardest to eat healthy and get all the vitamins and minerals my body needs on a daily basis but there are days that I can't do that so that's why I multitask by taking Centrum Vitamints Raspberry and Centrum Gummies



 It's easy to enjoy staying healthy with simple solutions like Centrum Gummies and Vitamints.  And when I say easy I mean I literally just pop them in each day and I know that I'm doing something to promote my overall health even if my diet for the day isn't reflecting that. The flavor helps make it easy to enjoy taking these each day!!


So head to the Vitamin section of Walmart and start striving everyday to stay healthier and happier with Centrum Gummies and Vitamints! Be sure to check out this coupon page as well and leave a comment below to let me know how you will start multitasking when it comes to your health and wellness!


*These statements have not been evaluated by the food and drug administration.  This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.







The Most Comfortable Workout Outfit in the World + A Giveaway!

Monday, May 30, 2016

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I workout a lot so I have a lot of workout clothing to choose from.  But just like with my dresses, tops, and jeans, I have a favorite pair of workout pants and a favorite sports bra.    All too often, I've worked out and then went about my day running errands and doing yard work before I shower, but after a couple hours I felt like my chest was going to explode. I'd feel squished and I had HUGE indents in my skin from my straps.  All I ever wanted was a super comfortable workout bra.   And finally I've found it!


Some people don't understand why people care about getting "nice" workout gear.  The thing is - when you look good you feel better and you are more likely to give it your all during a workout.  Plus, you want to be comfortable.  Wearing a ragged old worn out sports bra and pants that don't fit properly just distracts you and doesn't make you feel ready to kick butt.  In fact, it makes me grouchy.  That's why I make it such a big deal to get workout apparel that I absolutely love! It helps me look forward to working out because I can pick out an awesome outfit that not only looks good but feels amazing when I put it on!



The Adjustable Bra from Handful is so amazing.  First of all, the fabric is the softest ever! It's also quick drying and wicks away sweat so I don't feel so icky after my workout.  I love the removable pads and the flat seams on the inside.  The straps are really comfortable and can be kept as an X back or tied up as a halter.  This bra comes in a variety of colors too.   It allows me to move as much as I need to during a workout and I don't have to worry about anything popping out, a strap falling, or the bra riding up on me.


Now for workout pants I am obsessed with my Compression Capris from Physiclo! These capris have a built-in resistance technology that really help make my workouts more productive.  These are sleek and breathable and the inner elastic layers are like resistance bands around the legs.  They target quads, hamstrings, abductors, and glutes.  I can't believe how comfortable they are and they really do help me with my form and how hard I go when I do my workouts.  I can really feel a difference which is why these are one of my favorite workout capris EVER!

And I have a fantastic giveaway for you guys! One lucky winner will get a pair of compression capris from Physiclo!
a Rafflecopter giveaway






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What's So Great About Compression?!?

Thursday, May 26, 2016

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Compression is all the rage these days when it comes to fitness.   But what IS compression?  Well, compression gear is designed to apply specific levels of pressure to whatever part of your body you're wearing it.  The pressure can help the contraction direction of your muscle fibers which can make your body more efficient and can reduce vibrations which is less traumatic to your muscles and makes them less fatigued.  One of the most well known brands of compression gear is Tommie Copper.  Tommie Copper sleeves and apparel are actually designed to be worn all day long. The 4 directional compression helps muscles recover and gives relief from everyday aches and pains.


All of Tommie Copper's products contain CopperZnergy fabric which is infused with copper and zinc.  CopperZnergy eliminates odors caused by microbes on the fabric and gives UPF 50+ protection from the sun!




So this is my go-to compression outfit and it's all from Tommie Copper.  The top is the Women's Compression Camisole with Adjustable Straps. The adjustable straps are perfect for me because I always like the option of making them perfect for my body.  The straps are nice and thin so they don't leave lines and this cami sits high on the hip so it doesn't ride up. It really helps me look nice and shapely when I layer it under another shirt.  It gives full torso compression and is super comfortable.
The Shaping Compression Legging has a contoured design that is very flattering. It smooths and shapes and the compression is at the waist, butt, thigh and knee.  These leggings are so supportive and I love the higher waistband.  They are also very breathable and I love the hidden key/phone pocket.
I feel like I have better form when I wear Tommie Copper Compression gear and afterwards my muscles don't feel so shredded and destroyed.

Have you guys ever worn compression gear? What did you think?


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Thinking Spring [OOTD]

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

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I wore this outfit to work the other day and everyone went crazy over it, mostly because of the sandals so I just had to share it on here.  I love pink so the other week I got a pink cardigan from New York & Company and I wore it with plain black and white.  To spice things up a bit I needed sheos that would compliment the cardigan. VOILA!



These are the Carina Iris Leather Thong Sandals from Alegria.  I am so obsessed with these. They have an adjustable hook and loop strap so they fit just perfect.  They are EXTREMELY comfortable with their cork, memory foam, and polyurethane footbed that fit the contours of my feet.






Of course the design is beautiful and I love the bright colors and the floral look.  These give me great arch support which is the number one thing I need in any shoe.




These are great because they are casual yet they really dress a look up.   I can't get over the comfort because most shoes that have a heel height over 1 inch are extremely uncomfortable for me.  It was like walking on air in these things.   They are for sure my new favorite pair of shoes that I own!   Check out Alegria for more adorable and comfortable footwear!

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5 Ways to Make Life Easier with A Small Dog

Monday, May 23, 2016

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It should be no surprise to any of you by now that I love small dogs.  I mean, I have 4 chihuahuas of my own.  It's very different than owning a large breed but it's just as rewarding.  That being said, I wanted to put a few tips together on how to make life easier with a small dog.










[POTTY PADS]
If you are one of those people that can't stand the idea of taking a dog outside all the time to go to the bathroom, a small dog may be better for you because they can actually go inside on potty pads.  The trick is, to make sure you get the right kind of potty pads, otherwise you will have an even bigger mess to clean up.  I always look for large, durable potty pads that hold liquid (and solids) very well.  I personally choose Frisco Potty Pads from Chewy.  They are fast drying and they have plenty of layers to lock in wetness and prevent it from going through to the floor beneath it.  They even have a built in dog attractant so that makes these excellent for potty training. 


[HARNESSES]
Some little dogs have tendancy to slip out of collars or they have sensitive tracheas so collars can be dangerous because it can crush them.  Harnesses are a great choice and can make it even easier to control a hyper dog.  When my dogs are home and inside, they don't wear any type of collar because I don't want to risk them getting stuck on something.
[SMALL KIBBLE]
Since there's always a risk of choking with standard size kibble, make sure you use a small breed formula of dog feed which has tinier bite sized pieces perfect for your pooch's tiny mouth.

[FUR]
Since small breed dogs tend to be on furniture more, their fur tends to get EVERYWHERE.  I highly recommed vacuuming twice a week, every week.  Trust me, it really helps get the fur off your furniture so it won't get on your clothing when you sit down.

[BATHING]
Smaller dogs tend to get stinky not from themselves but from being touched and held by people all the time.  The oils from our skin and hands can make them greasy.  So if you notice it's about that time, make sure you bathe them!




What advice do you have for small dog owners?



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Medicine Safety Around the House (+ A Giveaway)

Friday, May 20, 2016

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Pretty much every one of us takes some sort of medication whether it's a vitamin or supplement or a prescription pill.  Many of us also have kids or houseguests and one of the important things to combine the two is keeping YOUR medications safe and away from others.   So today I wanted to introduce you to Med-Master Deluxe Steel Case, a steel medicine case that helps organize, secure, and protect medications from abuse, misuse, and theft.  It's from Penny Wise Office Products, one of the largest e-tailers of office supplies in the country, and they were excited to share this new product by MMF Industries with me! You can use it at home or if you're a healthcare professional and provide homecare services you may also find it very useful. 

Did you know that prescription drugs are the most commonly abused drug of American Teens 14 and older.  And of the people that abuse them, 70% say they get them from their family without their permission.  That's why something as simple as having a Med-Master case can help prevent overdose and prescription drug abuse. 


The Deluxe Steel Med Case has a programmable 3-digit combination lock to ensure no one can get in without the code.  It also has an LED 10x magnifying glass that is great for trying to read tiny labels in any lighting.   There's even a magnetic dry erase kit which you can use to keep track of refills, dosing, times, or any other special notes.     I also love the pill tray which is great for sorting and pouring and you can wash it in the dishwasher. 





The door opens 90 degrees and actually was made to act as a shelf to help sort and manage medicine right by the cabinet which eliminates the risk of leaving bottles unsecured.  I love the interior shelf. It's great for storage and keeping everything upright.  There's also a removable handle and it also comes with easy mount holes for secure wall placement! The batteries and hardware are all included and everything was so quick and easy to put together! This gives me so much peace of mind because I don't need to worry when friends bring over their kids or if people are in my house to use the restroom I know they can't get into my prescriptions. 


This product and thousands of others are available for free, next day delivery from Penny Wise.  They also offer a free full line catalog when you call 1-800-942-3311 or visit www.penny-wise.com.

And today one of you is going to win a Deluxe Steel Case of your own!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
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What I Wore to Mother's Day Brunch

Thursday, May 19, 2016

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So Mother's Day was amazing weather and I wanted to celebrate it by wearing an adorable dress.   I took my mom out for brunch and it was so fun!   I decided to wear this Criss Cross Dress from Haley and the Hound.

This dress is soooo light and airy that it doesn't even feel like I'm wearing a dress! I love the pattern on it as well and the colors are very flattering. 


But you should definitely check out Haley and the Hound.  They have some beautiful pieces and all very reasonably priced.  The styles and selection are great! 


How did you celebrate Mother's Day?













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Gardening & Greekfest

Wednesday, May 18, 2016




This weekend was full of a whole lotta G's!  Gardening and Greekfest. Before I tell you about my delicious Greekfest food let's take a look at what has been growing in my garden. 

 Yes, that's right. I HAVE CREATED LIFE!













Every year the Greek Church in our neighborhood holds a weekend-long Greekfest with delicious foods and great music. So obviously it's nearby so I made several (like 4 or 5) trips there.  If you have been following me on Snapchat you probably saw the hilarious snaps of people running to get out of the rain. (By the way - if you don't follow me on Snapchat you are missing out so add me - ellenr886!)




I ate Greek food for Breakfast, Lunch, and Dinner! UGH so good.  Back to my diet now though!
What did you do this weekend?

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3 Changes I've Made to My Diet

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

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Warning - I'm gonna brag in this post!  In the past month and a half of lost weight and inches in an effort to take back my health.  Some people have been asking what changes I've made so I figured I'd do a blog post about it. 

{1} Less Carbs
I do love carbs, especially with pasta but I have really been trying to avoid them lately. And it's really helping me drop weight.  So instead of my usual ground beef and brown rice, I opt for veggies like bell peppers or broccoli.  They still fill me up but they don't have nearly as many calories as rice would. 

Since I'm cutting carbs that means I have to cut out more foods like pizza, and sandwiches with bread. Instead I eat the meat and the veggies so I'm getting protein and my vitamins and nutrients that I need each day.

{2} More Protein
Since I'm working out 4 days a week I need protein so my body can help build muscle.  I have been eating ground beef during the week because first of all I love it and second of all I just can't do chicken.  I think chicken is so boring! Don't hate me! 

{3} Smarter Snacking
I used to snack on all sorts of things but now I'm being really smart about what I consume. I hate feeling hungry so I needed to find a snack that would help me feel full AND benefit my body.   So I've discovered New Zealand Jerky and I'm obsessed!  It comes in three flavors - Original, Peppered, and Teriyaki and it contains no GMOs.  It's so delicious and packed with protein which helps me feel fuller and also gives my body the protein it needs.   New Zealand Jerky infuses real wood smoke during the cooking process of their jerky so it has an AMAZING flavor.   You have to try this stuff, seriously!!


So that's what I've been up to. Keep following along so you can see my health and fitness progress!

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A [HUGE] Announcement! |BLOG BOSS BABE|











I am so thrilled to finally announce a super secret project I’m part of with Helene (Helene in Between.) She has always been one of my favorite bloggers that I look up to and now I've actually teamed up with her and several other AMAZING bloggers.  It’s called Blog Boss Babe and it’s your one stop for all things blogging. Education, mentors, online community, and so much more.


I’m a mentor inside of Blog Boss Babe. That means I can give you some of my best blogging tips and tricks that will all be inside of Blog Boss Babe.  The absolute best way to grow your blog is to become part of a community that cares. You need the resources and tools that will help you understand blogging techniques, social media skills, and more.



I know that starting something new when it comes to your blog can be scary, but I can assure you, Blog Boss Babe is the REAL DEAL. I know, because I’m a member! You will absolutely love this incredible community and the resources inside Blog Boss Babe.


I’m thrilled to join Helene and the other mentors and bloggers already in Blog Boss Babe, I hope you’ll join me! Please spread the word! BLOGGERS UNITE!!!



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