How to Beat the Winter Blues


image via Pinterest

I love living in a place where we experience all 4 seasons. Although, I dislike the bitter chill of the cold, and getting up out of my warm bed in the morning to scrape ice and snow off my car, I genuinely like winter. Winter forces us to relax and slow down. Snow storms keep us trapped inside, force us to let go off obligations, and just relax. It is a time to give our bodies and minds a break. But for some the winter can greatly affect our happiness. Although I don’t suffer from SAD (seasonal affective disorder), I know people who do, and I have seen the effects of lack of sunshine, and fresh air on all of us. By the end of winter, I’m usually over it and that’s when I start to feel that cabin fever or the need to escape. Sometimes it feels like winter is never going to end!

Over the years I have learned how to embrace winter and how to feel just as happy in this season as I do in others. I hope my tips help you to have a healthier and happier winter season.

Appreciate and accept winter for what it is and what it gives us

Recently I had a conversation with my Grandma and she told me “your life is your mindset”. Isn’t she the cutest? She is so right! Much of our life is dictated by our state of mind. Shifting your perspective on winter can greatly help you appreciate it more. Yes, your toes are cold, and it gets dark at 4:30 but we get to use warm blankets and wear cute boots. Be grateful for what this season is giving you.

Make a winter bucket list

I have done previous posts in the past about how I try to make bucket lists for each season. In college, I started doing this in the winter time and a lot of the winter blues I was experiencing went away. Don’t be afraid to act like a kid again. Go snow tubing or skiing, have a movie night with friends and drink wine, take hot baths on a Sunday night and pamper yourself. Bake cookies! Do whatever it is that will make you feel warm inside. Winter is the perfect time to connect with people you haven’t seen in awhile.

Get things done

Do you ever have to get something important done but you just can’t because the weather is just too beautiful outside to be stuck in the house? Well winter is the perfect time to get those things done. Whether it’s a project around the house or a new business venture, winter is a great time to get focused and begin. With nothing to distract you, and a great excuse to stay inside, why not get going on a task that requires being isolated?

Take Vitamin D

I can’t stress this one enough especially if you live in the Northern US or Canada. We do not get nearly enough sunlight in the winter and lower Vitamin D levels can greatly affect our health. I started taking a D supplement last year when I began working in an office that had been converted from a warehouse. Lack of windows= lack of sunlight. I noticed my mood improve and my anxiety greatly diminished. It can also help to make you feel less fatigued among other benefits.

Get a happy lamp

I recently bought this Happy Lamp for my sister for Secret Santa and it’s perfect for anyone fighting the winter blues. This lamp provides light therapy which can improve mood, make you feel happier and help you to sleep better by resetting your circadian rhythm. It’s perfect for placing on your desk at work.

Take a vacation

Last but certainly not least is to escape the winter for a little while. Nothing makes me feel more relaxed and refreshed than an island trip in the middle of winter. You’ll also have something to look forward to which will keep you going through the winter months. My top two destinations are Turks and Caicos, and the Maldives.

I want you to remember to embrace life. Embrace snow, embrace winter! And most importantly get help if you need it. My tips above will definitely help but if winter makes you feel very low and you start to experience real feelings of depression do not be afraid to speak to a professional.

Please leave me comments or questions down below. I would love to connect more with my readers.


How to Make a Healthier Hot Cocoa


hot cocoa
image via Pinterest

The other night I was finishing up a healthy meal I had made when something hit me. I wanted hot chocolate. My pesky little sweet tooth was sneaking up on me again and I was debating driving down the street to the Dunkin Donuts drive-thru. I decided to give myself 10 minutes and drink a bottle a water before I would make my decision. After some time passed I realized I didn’t want to start 2018 off by making choices based off of “feelings”. If I want to be healthy in 2018, I should make choices a healthy person would make. So I whipped up a little creation that I thought I would share. It’s healthy, delicious and it will warm you up on these cold winter nights.

Healthier Hot Cocoa

1 cup of unsweetened almond milk (can use nut milk of your choice)

1 heaping tablespoon of cocoa powder

3 Tbsps of Agave (or healthy sweetener of your choice)

1 tsp vanilla extract

dash of cinnamon

I start by adding the milk to the pot and heating it on a medium heat. Then I just add the other ingredients and whisk.  *Side note: I like things SWEET so I would recommend starting with one tablespoon of agave and adding more to taste*

This hot cocoa was so rich and it gave me the satisfaction I was craving. I hope it does that for you too! If you try it, please let me know down below.

I hope you’re all having  a wonderful day 🙂



5 Paleo Recipes To Add To Your Holiday Menu

It’s the MOST wonderful time of the year and ohhhh boy, the treats are flowin.

Myself and Matt (aka the Grinch)

I absolutely LOVE Christmas and I absolutely LOVE treats so this time of year can be challenging for me. Making paleo recipes allows me to feel satisfied and feel like I’m treating myself, while still staying on track with my health and wellness goals. Below I’m sharing my 5 favorite paleo recipes which you can add to your holiday menu. All of these recipes would be great to serve to your guests, or to bring to a party. Enjoy!

Cranberry Turkey Poppers // These look so delicious and combine all the best food from the holidays. I love making poppers because they’re easy and delicious. Plus, there are so many different combinations you can make. These would be perfect to serve or bring as an appetizer and if you have leftovers they’re perfect to bring to work.

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Spinach and Artichoke Twice Baked Potatoes // I love spinach and artichoke anything so I was so excited to see this combination with potatoes (because who doesn’t love potatoes???). Staying dairy free means finding substitutes for creamy recipes that don’t taste like dirt and this one is a winner. I’m going to be bringing this dish to Christmas Eve at my cousin’s house and I think it’s going to be a hit.

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Brussel Sprouts // This recipe is my go-to during the week. Eating veggies is important to say the least and it becomes much, much easier to eat them when bacon gets thrown into the mix. I think this would make such a great side for any meal, especially during the holidays.

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Spinach and Artichoke Dip // This dip is DELICIOUS and can easily be made in a food processor. I made this recipe on Thanksgiving and my sister has asked me to make it every day since. The cashews really lend the texture that’s needed for a creamy dip while the marinated artichokes lend so much flavor. You would never guess that it doesn’t contain any dairy.

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Magic Cookie Bars // Need I say more? Magic cookie bars always remind me of the holidays. Desserts like this one are so delicious but can make you feel weighed down and heavy. This is a great, healthier alternative to the conventional type. All the flavor, none of the tummy aches.

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I hope you’re all enjoying this magical time of the year with family and friends. If you happen to try one of these recipes please let me know down below. What are you bringing or serving this holiday season? I would love to know.

Happy Holidays!


How to Drink Apple Cider Vinegar

For a long time I knew Apple Cider Vinegar was good for me but I didn’t know how to incorporate it into my diet. If you’ve ever opened a bottle of ACV you will know the smell is….HORRIBLE. The smell of vinegar is so overwhelming and I could never figure out how to get this stuff into my body.

If you don’t know the benefits of ACV you can research and find so many articles. Not only is it a natural antibiotic but it also contains powerful polyphenols, helps you to burn fat and is great for both digestion and immunity. The list of benefits honestly goes on and on.

I finally figured out a simple way to incorporate it into my diet and I wanted to share it with you all.

You will need:

12-16 oz of water

1-2 tsps Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar (with the mother)

1 slice of citrus fruit (I prefer orange)

Pinch of ginger (optional)

Pinch of turmeric (optional)

1.) Take your citrus slice and squeeze it into a cup or water bottle.

2.) Fill your water bottle and add your turmeric and ginger.

The citrus and the spices add a certain amount of tangy flavor that really helps to compliment the ACV. The combination of these ingredients tastes really delicious and refreshing. It’s the perfect way to start your morning as well.

Let me know if you guys enjoy posts like these. Nutrition was my major in college and it is an interest of mine so I would be happy to do more nutrition/food related posts.

Hope you all have a fantastic Thursday!


5 Dairy Free Must-Haves: Sweets Edition

Hello all!

Today I’m focusing on my favorite dairy free sweet treats! I’ve been lactose intolerant since I was a year old. Despite that, I still ate some dairy as a kid with the help of Lactaid pills but as I got older it really started to negatively affect my digestion and my skin so I decided to quit dairy cold turkey. I felt better, my skin was clear and I even lost some weight. Over the past year I’ve gone back and forth between eating it and not eating it and I definitely slip up.

Unfortunately, now my body reacts even worse to dairy and I break out in eczema! So basically my intolerance turned into what seems like a full blown allergy (can that even happen???) and I’ve had to get creative when it comes to finding amazing dairy free alternatives. I hope you all enjoy these finds!

Steve’s Dairy Free Ice Cream // Every flavor I’ve had so far has been amazing! So creamy, sweet and delicious. You would never know it’s not real ice cream. It seems to be sold out online but I find mine at my local grocery store. My favorite is a tie between the salted caramel and chocolate chip cookie dough.

Zen Dairy-Free Pudding // Nothing will take you back to childhood like a chocolate pudding cup. These are so good and perfect if you’re looking for something sweet and light for dessert or a snack.

Silk Creamer // I couldn’t live without my coffee in the morning. And my coffee just isn’t coffee without my creamer. This is the best dairy free coffee creamer I’ve tried. Caramel and vanilla are favorites of mine!

A Good Vegan Bakery // If you’re like me and you love sweets, definitely find a local vegan bakery where you can get the goods. If you live in Central Jersey I recommend Papa Ganache in Matawan. Their cupcakes are delicious, they have a wide selection and I’m able to satisfy my sweet tooth without harming my stomach!

Almond Breeze Chocolate Milk // Chocolate milk was by far one of my favorite things to drink growing up and it always brought me such a sense of comfort. I’ve since switched to this one by Almond Breeze and I don’t even miss the regular stuff. I’ve never been much of a milk fan anyway so I like that almond milk doesn’t have that nasty, milk after-taste. Besides drinking this straight from the carton you can also blend it up with some ice, chocolate protein powder and a scoop of peanut butter for a delicious shake.

I would love to hear your dairy free suggestions down below! And stay tuned for an upcoming post where I’ll talk about my savory dairy free must-haves.

I hope you’re having an amazing day wherever you are. Until next time!


Fall Fitness Inspiration

Ohhhh my gosh. It has been a full week since I’ve posted and I feel so guilty. There aren’t really any excuses that justify it but sometimes when I get home from work I’m so tired and so over staring at a screen and this week I just didn’t get around to posting. I also went away this weekend to Ocean City, Maryland which was super fun but now I’m back and ready to jump into another post! I wanted to talk about Fall fitness inspiration and what I’ve been doing lately to slowly get back into a fitness routine and make healthier habits. Fall is a weird time to get in shape . The holidays are about to be here. Hearty soups and decadent desserts replace light meals. And a warm bed feels much much better than heading into the cold to go to the gym. But that doesn’t mean it’s impossible and it doesn’t mean you need to feel deprived. These are just some easy tips I’m working on right now to shed some of this college weight and get fit for Fall!

Continue reading “Fall Fitness Inspiration”