Wellness Center Update

Hello, everyone!

I know it’s been a while since I last posted. I had to take a medical leave, but I am back in good health and back to work!

I wanted to post an update about the wellness center idea. I applied for a fellowship last fall, which would have paid for me to work on this project full time. Unfortunately, I did not get moved to the next round. Especially after my recent illness, I feel that this is  not the right time to be pursuing this project. I would still LOVE to do this, but just not right now.

So, until the timing is right, what can Happy Avocado bring to you? I’ll continue to discuss overall wellness, nutrition, events in the Des Moines area, and even helpful household hacks. Thank you for following along!

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Healthy GF/Vegan Muddy Buddies (Puppy Chow) Recipe!

Muddy Buddies

Another Arbonne consultant shared this online, so of course I had to make it ASAP!

Um, YUM! These are a hit!

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Muddy Buddies, also known as Puppy Chow in the Midwest, is a sugary sweet, crunchy snack that is traditionally made with butter and powdered sugar. Here is a healthier gluten free, vegan adaptable option that packs extra protein!

All you need is:

1/4 cup chocolate chips

1/4 cups honey (Swap for agave nectar if you want it vegan)

1/4 cups peanut butter

1 and 1/2 TB of coconut oil

1 TB of vanilla extract

3 cups gluten free Chex cereal (I used rice Chex)

3 scoops Arbonne Protein Shake Mix in either Vanilla or Chocolate (Arbonne’s protein powder is plant based, vegan, and gluten free)

In a microwaveable bowl, add the chocolate chips, honey, peanut butter, coconut oil, and vanilla extract. Microwave for 20 seconds at a time until smooth and melted. It took me about 40 seconds, stirring halfway through. Pour over a mixing bowl with the Chex cereal in it. Once stirred together well, place into a bag with the Arbonne protein powder and shake it up!

Let cool for 15 minutes in the refrigerator and enjoy!

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My first batch is already gone, so I need to make more. Let me know if you make em!

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DIY Magnets for Organization, Fridge Art, & More!

Back in my art kid days and before I was old enough to go into bars, the prime hangout spot was downtown at Java Joes, outside on the sidewalk. For fun and a little cash, I would make magnets from my photography and necklaces. I’d carry them around in a magnetic lunch box and sell them to whoever was hanging out outside the coffee shop. Always the entrepreneur!

My latest project has been to start a large calendar for our family. I don’t like the messiness of dry erase or the tediousness of writing everything in for each day–especially if events repeat, like work or daycare. So I thought–magnets! I had a hard time finding cute ones online that fit my needs, so I made my own.

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Before: Pretty messy.

DIY magnets are super easy to make, relatively inexpensive, and can be used for a variety of things! Other ideas that come to mind are making your own photos magnets, a chore chart for your child, or simply customized magnets for fridge/file cabinet/locker decoration.

This project can be completed with three to four items. These can be found in local office supply stores, around your home, or online.

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You will need:

Adhesive business card magnets (I prefer these because they are already flat and easy to manage, where the rolls of adhesive magnets tend to be curvy and not as strong).

Whatever you want to make magnetic: in this instance I used stickers from my planner and decorative paper, but you could also use notecards, fortune cookie fortunes, photos…whatever you want!

Scissors–they don’t need to be super nice.

Optional: Self adhesive laminating paper for an extra coat of protection

Step 1: Place your stickers, paper, or whatever onto the sticky side of the magnet.

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Step 2: Cut a sheet of self laminating paper to size, peel off the backing, and smooth over the magnet.

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Step 3: Cut out.

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Done! Now instead of writing things out each month, or erasing and rewriting changed appointments, I can simply move things around as needed.

So, here is our calendar after!

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It’s not perfect but it’s DONE. And it makes my organizational self happy. This system has worked well for me, and I find I’m updating our calendar quickly each month instead of putting it off for forever.

I also ordered ultra fine dry erase markers in order to keep things neat and easier to read.

If you decide to make some magnets, show some love and post yours in the comments!

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Five Steps to Food Journaling

Five Steps to Food Journaling

A lot of my clients who are just starting to eat healthier have no idea where to start with their diet. And rightly so! With so many fads and misinformation out there, it’s easy to become overwhelmed.

When I sit down with a  client, one of the first things I recommend to do is to keep a food journal for one week so I can see the areas we can change, swap out, or omit certain foods. Consistent food journaling has been shown to double weight loss, and it is a wonderful tool if you are trying to figure out what foods may be causing you discomfort such as bloating, allergies, fatigue, or other symptoms.

1: Just start.

“I’ll start tomorrow.” “I’ll need a new special notebook.” “I’m halfway through the day already.”

You have to begin somewhere, whether that is morning, mid-day, or midnight! When first starting out, simply writing down what you consume throughout the day will help you pinpoint where you may need more fuel or less fillers. Don’t even bother with calorie counting–just write what it was and when you had it.

2. Keep it simple.

You can keep a small notebook with you, jot it into your planner, take notes on your phone, or snap photos. Just document it!

Food Journal by @ooomami

3. Review

Look back every few days to a  week to see where there are any habits that you’d like to change. Maybe you skip breakfast. Perhaps you always feel like you need a soda at 2pm. Or maybe you notice you don’t feel good after eating certain things, or you’re eating too much of other things.

4. Revise

Decide what you’d like to focus on to change, and start there to create a strategy. Add in a healthy breakfast to start your day right, or at least a protein shake. Switch from soda to tea, a green tea based fizz stick, or sparkling water. Swap out sour cream and use unsweetened greek yogurt. If you find yourself overeating foods that are less healthy, set a limit on how many times you can have it in a week.

5. Stick with it

Keep writing things down and sticking to your swaps. Change or add new things as necessary. You will be surprised how much you’ll learn about yourself and what foods work best for you.

Do you keep a food journal? Share your experience in the comments below!

 

Disclaimer: This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should contact your physician or naturopath with any questions you may have regarding your specific medical condition. 

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