Shopping and Makeup.

I am not a big shopper or makeup person. I try my best to buy what I truly love and let the rest go.

I like to give and receive functional gifts. Black Friday has now become a long weekend rolled into Cyber Monday. I did shop for myself. I love Boom by Cindy Joseph. I bought the Boomstick Trio.  Color, Glimmer and Glow will be in my makeup kit! The Boomstick Trio creates the look of happiness and I don’t need a mirror to apply. They are made from wonderful ingredients like beeswax and honey. I love how the products smell. The color stick is fantastic. I use it as a blush, eye shadow and lip color. The Glo stick is a moisturizer that you can use anytime anywhere. The Glimmer stick is a push for me. It feels a bit fancy. I thought I would step it up for the Holidays.

Here is a video that I created in 2015 with my friend Wendy. I am not a makeup person. It has over 16,000 views about me wearing makeup!

I also like to buy myself beeswax candles from Vermont HoneyLights. Vermont HoneyLights is a small mother daughter business in Bristol, Vermont.  Shawna and Bonita are passionate about making beeswax candles. They are concerned about the survival of  honey bees. They know the importance of using natural ingredients and supporting  hardworking beekeepers. It is my once a year purchase to celebrate the Year. I love beeswax candles. They smell amazing, they give off negative ions which make you feel good. These are the only candles that I use. If someone gives me a candle, I usually re-gift them. Just this morning, a friend gave me her own homemade candle. I told her no thanks, that I only use beeswax candles. She is a wonderful friend that I can say things like that to her without hurting her feelings. She will give it to someone who will love it.

I have to begin to shop for my family’s Christmas gifts. I have one great idea in mind, but I don’t want to give it away just yet. I am buying from a company where 50% of their profits go to buy a particular product for people in need. It will make a great gift!

I am focusing on keeping things simple by shopping local and supporting small businesses this Holiday Season.

What kind of gifts do you like to give? Do you like to make things to give as gifts like my candle making friend? I am always looking for creative ideas. I would love to hear from you.

Love,

Mary

 

 

 

What do I really want?

Step one to Feeling Better in last week’s blog was to get clear on what you really want.

1. Get Clear About What You Really Want And Journal. It is very powerful to start writing your thoughts down. I have been listening to Marie Forleo’s Everything is Figure Outable. She has an exercise in her book where she has you answer the question; What do you really want? Every day for 7 days, finish this sentence in writing. I really want… After the 7 days, go back and circle the ideas that repeated for you. I have gotten a clearer picture on what I want.  Being focused is an energy saver

I thought it would be powerful to share what I really want.

This is what came up for me. I really want. I want to be calmer, feel more fulfilled, and happier. My plan is do the following to help me reach my goals.

  • A clean simple natural home.  I love to come home to a clean orderly house. The beds are made. The kitchen sink is clean. The bathrooms are orderly with towels neatly hanging. I use natural cleaning products.
  •  OutdoorFit to continue to be more than a typical boot camp. Being Fit and Healthy is an act of personal power. It creates independence and self reliance. I want my OutdoorFit ladies to continue to be strong, healthy, fit, and empowered regardless of their age.
  • A better relationship with my husband.  Dan and I have been married for 42 years and have a good relationship. It is always a work in progress.
  • More Creativity. I want to keep writing a weekly blog post. It feels like an important exercise for me. I have been enjoying adding my colored sharpie art work. I love being around creative people. I need to be creative too!
  • More time spent in nature. We had a family house on a lake in Vermont which we sold. I really miss being in the country. For now, I intend to hike in the woods and take walks on the beach.
  • Better self care. I take pretty good care of myself. I get massages and chiropractic adjustments. I would like more of it and to commit to daily meditation.
  • More coffee dates with friends. I love Jerry Seinfield’s Comedians in Cars getting Coffee. It feels like the perfect thing to do. Pick up your friend in an old car, have coffee, laugh and take a walk. This morning, I picked up my friend Ivone in my Honda CR-V drove to the beach, and walked the boardwalk. Afterwards we had a delicious breakfast. You always laugh with Ivone. I am working on the idea of having an old car.

I am sure this list will change. For now, it feels right. My hope is that I will feel calmer, more fulfilled and happier. I will be able to perform at a higher level and to create a better life for myself and the people around me.

What do you really want? I encourage you to spend time to figure it out. I would love to hear what your list is.

Love,

Mary

 

 

How to Feel Better?

I enjoy inspiring women to be strong, healthy and fit so they can live empowered fulfilled lives. It is important to put your body first. How do you feel in your body today? Are you cranky and agitated? It is important to lead from a calm and centered place. I have so much extra energy at times which is not always a good thing. I love working out because it calms me and I feel so much better when I am done. Over exercising is not a good idea though. There are other ways to ground yourself.

10 Tips to a Balanced Grounded Life.

How to Feel Better?

1. Get Clear About What You Really Want And Journal. It is very powerful to start writing your thoughts down. I have been listening to Marie Forleo’s Everything is Figure Outable. She has an exercise in her book where she has you answer the question; What do you really want? Every day for 7 days, finish this sentence in writing. I really want… After the 7 days, go back and circle the ideas that repeated for you. I have gotten a clearer picture on what I want.  Being focused is an energy saver!

2. Go Outside. Garden, Compost, Walk, and of course OutdoorFit is an excellent option.  Have you heard of Forest Bathing? The Japanese consider it plant medicine. It is called shinrin-yoku. Forest Bathing is walking in the woods and breathing in the forest air.  It has amazing health benefits. It improves your gut biome, boosts immunity, reduces stress hormones, blood pressure and heart rate. It just makes you feel better!

3. Eat Organic Food. Focus on vegetables and protein. Buy the highest quality food that you can afford. What you put in your mouth truly matters. I love starting my day with a cup of organic bulletproof coffee and ending it with a lovely glass of organic wine.

4. Practice Gratitude. It is easy to practice gratitude when life is going well. It is also so important to find blessings in the struggles. Life will feel lighter when you practice gratitude.

5. Read Daily. It is an effort for me to sit down and read a book. I am now committed to reading at least 10 minutes every morning. I’m currently reading Dave Asprey’s Game Changers. I have picked up a lot of great ideas from the successful people profiled in the book, just by reading 10 minutes daily.

6. Meditate. I am working on meditating 20 minutes a day. It has been very helpful.  I am calmer. Meditation activates the  parasympathetic nervous system. Leading from place of calm instead of having a fight or flight response is very powerful.

7. Declutter. Start getting rid of the things that you no longer love or serve a function for you. Check out my post about my closet. I feel so much better with less!

8. Create a simple cleaning schedule. This has been so helpful to me. I spend a little time everyday cleaning.  It makes me happy to come home to a clean simple home.  Dust your baseboards once in a while. You will sleep better.

9. Say Something Nice To Someone. Be a cheerleader!  Stop talking about yourself and start asking questions. Pay attention to how it makes you feel.

10. Get a good night sleep. This is always a work in progress. Shut off the electronics, have a cup of tea, or take an epsom salt bath before you go to bed.

How do you practice self care? What is important to you? I would love to hear what is working for you!

Love,

Mary

My Mom ran the NYC marathon at 56!

Last night my Dad sent a photo of my Mom running the NYC marathon at 56.  I love this picture of her. The Grand-kids call her Nana. I guess the printer decided to shorten it to NAN. She started running in her early 50’s. Many years ago, my husband Dan and I were running races. My Mom and Dad thought they would start running as well. It was a lot of fun.

Mom is now 88. She no longer runs, but continues to work out at the Y. She is an amazing person. She is a mother of 8 children, 23 grandchildren and 10 great grand-kids! She loves us all and remembers all of our birthdays!

My Mom is Fit and Fabulous…Aging Optional!

Have you thought of trying something new and you think that you are too old? You will never know unless you try.  I hope this short post about my Mom inspires you. Give it a try.

Love,

Mary

 

 

Dinner in 20!

Do you have a weekly meal plan?

I cook about the same every week. I try my best to eat in season. I change up the vegetables and herbs depending on what was at the Farmer’s Market, or in the CSA box that week.

Having a plan makes shopping easy. I shop once a week at Whole Foods and Trader Joe’s. I just go through the aisles and buy the same thing I also love Thrive Market. We eat what I buy so there is very little waste.

Here is a typical week of dinners.

  • Saturday: White rice, vegetables, cod  (Click here to read why I eat white rice instead of brown rice.)
  • Sunday: Banza chickpea pasta, chicken sausage, vegetables
  • Monday: Shrimp, sweet potatoes, vegetables
  • Tuesday: Chicken Fajitas(I marinate enough chicken thighs so I can have it on Thursday as well.) I serve with grain free Siete Chips.
  • Wednesday: Scallops, rice, vegetables
  • Thursday: Chicken Fajitas
  • Friday: Pizza Night! Amy’s cheese-less pizza, chicken sausage, vegetables

I cook in portion sizes. I cook for four. Full disclosure, sometimes the three of us eat the whole thing. Or I save one serving for Tom’s lunch the next day. The beauty of it all is cooking time is about 20 minutes.

Lately, I  have been buying a whole organic chicken, pasture raised when I can find it. I make pulled chicken for lunches, and save the bones to make bone broth. I love the efficiency and no waste in the process! During the week, I cook rice in the homemade bone broth. The broth is so good for you and it adds great flavor to the white rice.

I love having a plan and knowing what’s for dinner. My special needs son Tom will ask me what’s for dinner. If I don’t have an answer he will keep asking. He has made me organized! I now have less stress around dinner. I am also working on eating earlier. The plan is to eat at 6 pm. I need to start cooking at  5:40. I can usually get in on the table in 20 minutes or at least in 30!

I love having my IPAD on my kitchen windows so I can watch Garden Answers or Grace and Frankie for the third time! It makes kitchen time fun!

I hope this was helpful to you.  Do you have a meal plan?. Please post a comment. I love hearing about your everyday life.

Watermelon
        Eat in Season.

 

 

 

 

I made homemade mayonnaise!

I have been focusing on ways to reduce my plastic consumption and food waste. I have been so inspired by the Dutch Hill Homestead.   They are all about zero waste. They make as many products from scratch as possible, and feed any leftovers to the chickens and goats. I don’t have chickens or goats, so I put my food scraps into the compost bin.

I am all about keeping things easy. I don’t like to fuss or spend hours in the kitchen. I looked at what I buy on a regular basis and investigated how to make them from scratch. Once you have the process down it is easy. My son Tom loves mayonnaise. He will eat it straight from the jar. This morning I made homemade mayo. It was so easy and I used a cute little ball jar.

1/2 cup Organic Avocado oil

1 egg from farmer’s market.

1/2 tsp Dijon mustard.

1 tsp fresh squeezed lemon juice.

Put all of the ingredients right in the ball jar. Get out the blender stick and blend for about 20 seconds. To tell you the truth, I didn’t measure and it came out just fine.  I only make a small amount that I can use within a few days.

I also started making cashew milk, cashew yogurt, and almond milk. I hesitated with the almond milk because you need to strain it. I bought a nut bag and it is super easy. It strains the milk to remove the pulp. I can use the leftover pulp to make fat balls. I am feeling very efficient!

The last thing I have been doing is making bone broth. I buy an organic chicken I put the chicken in a covered pot full of water, bring the water to a boil and then simmer for about 90 minutes. I make pulled chicken from the meat, dividing it up into 4 oz portions in cute ball jars. It makes an easy grab and go lunch.  I then put the stock, the bones and vegetables into the crock pot on low for 24 hours to make delicious bone broth.

Everything tastes so much better when made from scratch with the best possible ingredients. Reducing plastic consumption and food waste is good for your health, our planet and your pocketbook.

I hope this inspires you to get out the blender stick and whip up some homemade mayo! Let me know. I would love to hear from you.

Love,

Mary

 

 

“Romancing the Ordinary”

My book club is reading Mirabai Starr’s WILD MERCY. Each chapter ends with a prompt.  Our latest prompt is: “My deepest desire is …” .

My first reaction is, I don’t know. I think how sad is that? So, I gave it a few days and this is what came up for me.

Finding Joy in the Everyday.

Laura from Garden Answer talks about “Romancing the Ordinary”.  Romancing the Ordinary is using something beautiful instead of just focusing on function. She uses a beautiful tomato cage to hold her tomatoes in place instead of a bamboo stick.

I love my morning coffee ritual. I use a 12 oz glass Bodum French Press. I make my coffee bulletproof, of course, and I pour it into an insulated glass mug. I buy my coffee from a local roaster, Fair Mountain Coffee, in Atlantic Highlands, NJ. It is organic, fair trade and delicious!

It is so nice to eat a salad for lunch with my husband. Especially when the lettuce is in season and handpicked from my backyard garden.

I love looking out my kitchen window while doing the dishes. Right now, the zinnias are in full bloom.

It is not always easy to find the joy. I work on finding joy in driving Tom, my special needs son, to camp. He tells me the same stories over and over while listening to his favorite radio station, 1410 am.  It is all about bringing the sacred into the ordinary. He is a blessing.

On a lighter note, I would also like a Big Chill refrigerator, a brick walkway, a trip to Mount Rushmore in a hybrid Volvo station wagon and a golden retriever puppy named Sophie. Oh, and learn to tap dance like Gene Kelly!

What are your deepest desires? Think about it and let me know. I would love to hear from you.

Love,

Mary

Aprons

“I love any activity that requires an apron.”

Kate Horner

My niece Katie once told me that she loves any activity that requires an apron. I just love that!

Aprons are so homey, comforting and cozy. It is a symbol of generosity and hospitality. It represents family, mothers and apple pie. Fathers too! My Dad wears an apron while cooking in the kitchen or out flipping a steak on the grill.

My friend Rosanne is a big apron gal! I reached out to get her take on aprons. She has different aprons for different activities.

Of course, She wears one to cook. Rosanne also  wears one in the garden. It is short with pockets for her tools. She wears one when she paints because she keeps a rag in her lap to wipe off excess paint and she doesn’t want to get paint on her clothes. Rosanne also wears a canvas apron when cutting her husband’s hair.  She doesn’t want all the little hairs sticking to her clothes. All fun activities!  Here is a garden and lifestyle  post with Rosanne  from 5 years ago! I am just sorry that she does not have an apron on!

There is a part of me that is resistant to aprons. I grew up in the 60’s when housework and staying home with your family was devalued. I wear an apron when I cook. Otherwise, I would be wiping my hands on my pants. I borrowed the fancy apron from Rosanne for the post. Honestly, I didn’t feel comfortable in it. I love the function of my stained beige William Sonoma apron. I have no problem wiping my hands on it.

It feels like the apron is making a comeback. I love seeing people wear aprons. I know something creative has been going on. They will probably be serving something delicious to eat!

How do you feel about aprons? You probably never thought about it. Do you wear an apron? Do you like activities that require an apron? If you are interested in health, fitness and feeling your best it is important to spend sometime in the kitchen cooking. Put on a cute apron, get focused and let me know what’s for dinner!

Love,

Mary

A Fancy Apron

Wendy’s 90 Days to Fit and Fabulous!

This morning Wendy came over for bulletproof coffee. She had just finished the 90 day Fit and Fabulous Gold Program, and was ready for her final weigh in and measurements.  Wendy wasn’t overly concerned about her weight. Her main goal was  to lose her menopausal pooch. She was feeling a bit matronly and pudgy around the middle. Her beautiful clothes were getting tight.

BIG NEWS! She lost 2 inches off of her waist, and 1 inch off her hips! Wendy also lost 4 pounds.  She has easily changed her habits and is confident that this will be a life long program. Wendy has committed to almost daily meditation, and is feeling centered and grounded throughout her day.

 

It has been so great to work with Wendy. She started the program in good health. She was able to change a few habits and now her daily life is even better! Wendy is the youngster in my OutdoorFit program. She is certainly Fit and Fabulous…Aging Optional!

February is the perfect month to start the 90 Day Fit and Fabulous Gold Program. How would you like to feel 3 months from now?  Energetic? Lighter? Vibrant? Reach out let’s have a conversation to see if the program is right for you.

Wendy made me a Beautiful Wendy Cettina Design thank you scarf. The yarn is by Madeline Tosh. The color is Graphite and the pattern is Fractal Danger. How cool is that?

December

 

December Intentions 

Slow down and take time for creativity. I really enjoy it when I take time for creativity. I love it when I take the extra steps to make something special. It creates coziness in my life. Last weekend, I replaced an old worn cushion cover on an outside antique wicker chair. I was thinking I don’t have time, but I can make time. It took me a few hours but I did it. I was then motivated to sweep the porch off. Next, I added some extra greens and dried hydrangea from my garden to the generic wreath hanging on the door. Now, every time I come into my house it makes me happy.

Trust in my own decisions. I am recovering my dining room chairs. I found two fabulous grain cloth fabrics on Etsy. Now, I need to decide which one to use. Either one will work. So, what do I do?? I text a friend and say what do you think? She said give it the weekend and pick the one I like best. She knows me too well! So much harder for me but of course it is the right answer!

Organize. This is huge for me. Last Sunday, I got up, cleaned the refrigerator, wrote out the dinners I wanted to make for the week, and made a shopping list.  I actually stuck to the meal plan each night this week. It has been so freeing. I know what I am making and I have the ingredients!  I have leftovers that I  put in ball jars for lunches. It is so efficient and calming.  Next step is to organize other areas of my life. What if I made a to do list for my business?  I am sure successful entrepreneurs have a plan written out not just ideas in their head.

Meditation. I am always saying I am going to meditate. I am getting better at being consistent with this, and I am beginning to feel a difference in my body. It is very grounding. 20 minutes meditation daily is a wonderful intention for December. Take time to get quiet.

Eat Well. Stay off the grains and sugar. This no longer feels like deprivation, which is a miracle. That is a whole other blog post. I set the intention not to have dessert and it works. December is a time of celebration and I can enjoy without going crazy eating treats that I don’t really want.

Exercise. I exercise. I teach OutdoorFit 5 times a week. It is also important for me to walk daily. George the dog is in my heart and is with me on my walks.

What changes would you like to make in December? Exercise more, eat well, meditate. If you feel overwhelmed, start small. Focus on one little area and complete a small task. It builds momentum and you will feel like doing more.  It will bring peace and joy.

Enjoy the Season, It is the most wonderful time of the year.

Happy December!

Love,

Mary