Personal Wellness Time is NOT Being Selfish

This post was sponsored by Massage Envy as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central.  I recently had a conversation with a friend, where we compared notes on paying attention to our personal wellness.  She commented, "I need certain things to take good care of myself - to reduce stress, and to keep myself feeling well and happy. It took me until my 40's to not feel guilty about that, but to just embrace it.  Boy, is it liberating!" As I've gotten older, I'm finally reaching this stage myself.   And I've learned a thing or two about how important total body care is.   I work hard.  And that daily emotional and physical wear and tear needs some wellness counter balance. Without guilt.   Without feeling like I'm being selfish.  It's time I invest in myself, in order to stay happy and healthy... for both myself and my family.  Everybody wins. We all have our routines that help us feel better.  Be it exercise, eating healthy foods, having some quiet "me" time,  … [Read more...]

What Teens Need To Know About Marijuana in Colorado

As all Coloradans are likely aware, this state now has the distinction of being one of the few locations in the US where retail use of Marijuana is legal.   This has brought about numerous changes to Colorado in recent months, including an influx of new residents. And a whole new ball game for parents to be prepared for. My kids are still quite young, but I’ve heard firsthand from Colorado moms about the new challenges that legalized use of marijuana has presented. One Denver area mom lamented to me how the primary argument she used to use with her son over recreational marijuana use, “it’s against the law”, has now become null and void, leaving her unsure of what else to say. His arsenal bolstered, he now enjoys pointing out to her, “See mom… it’s NOT against the law – there’s nothing wrong with using marijuana.” Especially for impressionable teenagers, you can see how this development has opened the way for the mentality: “Since it’s not illegal, it must be harmless”. New Free … [Read more...]

Back To School With ZBar Protein [Giveaway, Ended 8/12]

  Here in Western Colorado, the kids have already headed back to school.  You read that right, the first week of August.  (Disgusting! Don't even get me started...that's a whole other topic. )  At the top of my "Hooo-boy, here we go" Mom Angst List is this:  Trying to pack healthy lunches, in a hurry, each morning for my daughter to take to school. That's one of the reasons why I dearly love Clif Kid ZBars.  My kids devour them, they are quick and easy snacks to throw in a lunchbox, and the ZBar Protein bars contain even higher levels of protein to keep them fuller, longer. And in a stroke of genius (you polled a bunch of kids, didn't you Clif??), all three flavors of ZBar Protein contain CHOCOLATE - Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Mint, and Peanut Butter Chocolate. They think they're getting a treat.  Meanwhile, you're sneaking into their diet: 5g of Protein 3g Fiber Organic Whole Grains No high fructose corn syrup, synthetic preservatives or artificial … [Read more...]

Healthy On-The-Go Snacks Roundup!

Yeeehawww!  It's time for a snack roundup!  I know many of my readers live active, busy family lives and like myself are always on the lookout for healthy on-the-go snacks.  This past few weeks I've conducted a roundup of some great options, and am ready to pass along these tasty, healthy ingredient product ideas to you. Healthy, On-The-Go Snacks Roundup Sometimes we get in a food rut around my house, so it's been nice to have some new snacking choices available.  For me and my family, I prefer things with no preservatives, low sugar, and protein to keep hunger away longer.  If it's nutrient rich and helps fill a food group quota for the day, even better. What sounds good to you? NOKA Superfood NOKA Superfood pouches are made from awesome, organic ingredients like fruits, veggies, and superfoods.  Each pouch is 110 calories, and does not need to be refrigerated.  They have some interesting flavor combinations available, such as blueberry beet and mango coconut.  Their goal … [Read more...]

Meet My Baby Peeps!

We joined the Backyard Chicken Club!  Yes, that's a real thing.   Although we live within city limits, we are allowed to have up to 6 chickens on our property.  Meet Peaches, Tink, Bambi, Clementine, and Flynn Rider! Sleeping.  Seriously... how cute are they?!  When you cup them in your hand, the warmth makes them nod right off. So, yes.  Unknown to us, owning "urban chickens" is apparently a hip new thing to do.  Personally, we just got suckered in by the adorable, fuzzy baby chicks at our local feed store this Spring.  And my husband has a soft spot for birds.  So there you go. We almost didn't get Peaches.  We had a different chick in our box, and the teenaged employee at Murdock's clarified to me, "Do you realize that one is actually a meat bird?"  *gasp*!  We don't need any MEAT BIRDS, forgoodnesssakes!  So that one went back, and Peaches was added into the mix. Right now they live in our garage, with a heat lamp.  They are surprisingly affordable and low … [Read more...]

All Natural ASPIRE Sports Drinks [Giveaway, Ended 6/5]

Tired of giving your kids (or yourself) unhealthy drinks full of high fructose sugar?  So were the two hockey dads from Minnesota who created ASPIRE all natural sports drinks.   In an effort to improve the health and performance of athletes, they set out to innovate a better alternative. Other prevalent sports drinks often contain large amounts of sugar, salt, artificial dyes and flavors, preservatives, oils, and other unhealthy ingredients.  Oftentimes during strenuous activity, your body does need more than water.  ASPIRE offers a healthy alternative.  Their mission: “to create a natural sports drink that is better for your health, better for your performance, and better tasting.” All Natural ASPIRE Sports Drinks   With only 35 calories and 8g of sugar in a 12oz bottle, ASPIRE is sweetened with pure cane sugar, monk fruit and stevia leaf. My family tried out an assortment of all 5 available ASPIRE flavors, and the first thing I liked was the relatively smaller … [Read more...]

Think Earth ~ Free Green Summer Activities for Kids

Looking for some free activity ideas for your kids on summer break, with a bonus of helping become more aware of their environment?  Think Earth is a non-profit organization committed to helping young people develop habits and behaviors to help improve their environment... that is, to THINK EARTH.   In support of that goal, they are offering free green summer activities for kids. Free Green Summer Activities for Kids Think Green offers an award winning kids curriculum for free, which includes engaging worksheets and videos on things like natural resources, pollution and sustainability. The complete Think Earth Curriculum—nine units from preschool to middle-school—has been used since the 1990s to teach students about the importance of a clean, healthy environment and about what they can do to: conserve natural resources reduce waste minimize pollution Units are now available online, where you can also find more details and register your child.  Here's an overview of … [Read more...]

Healthy Skin Lifestyle With Skin Authority [Giveaway, Ended 10/15]

Between being conscious of my aging, and my history of having facial skin cancer, I take skin care and protection fairly seriously.  I'm a firm believer that having a good skin care regimen definitely pays off in a "more-youthful-than-your-real-age" appearance (who doesn't want that?!)  And please tell me that by now you are all using sun protection on your face!  So, so important and easy to do. Had I ever had a personal skin coach before?  No, no I had not.  Enter the healthy skin lifestyle offered by Skin Authority - which includes your own personal skin coaching session for free.  This complimentary skin consultation can help determine which products would work best for you to address your skin concerns.  They can even incorporate some of your existing skin care products into your routine, if that is your preference. Skin Authority is a skin care line commonly chosen by beauty experts, celebrities, and the media which has a track record for visible skin care performance and … [Read more...]

What Every Woman Should Know About #BreastCancerAwareness

During the upcoming month of October, you will hopefully see some buzz about it being the month of Breast Cancer Awareness.  This may come in the form of spotting the pink ribbon which serves as an emblem of sorts, a friend or coworker wearing an inordinate amount of pink, or perhaps in a blog post like this one. Honestly, I typically pay no mind to such things.  But thanks to a timely nudge from Tieks, who has teamed with the American Cancer Society to help promote awareness during October, I realized just how important this informational campaign is and decided to join in. Because 1 in 8 women in the  United States will be diagnosed with breast cancer in their lifetime. What? Scary.  BUT... the good news is: When breast cancer is detected early in the localized stage, the 5 year survival rate is over 95%. Ok, now do you see why supporting your pink sisters this month is such a good bandwagon to jump on?   That even though breast self-exams, clinical exams, and … [Read more...]

Letting Go Of Regret

Something happened to me today that I'm still digesting, but it promises to be a heavy weight lifted off my shoulders. After 20 years of regret, someone told me something today that allowed me to let it go. Many moons ago, I was riding a horse on the last stretch towards home, along a paved road. A nearby sprinkler system fired up, sounding eerily like a hissing snake, and spooked my horse. He proceeded to throw me, resulting in my landing flat onto my hip (and elbow) in the middle of the concrete. Ouch. In the ensuing circus, my teenaged riding friend dismounted, captured my bolting horse, and came close enough to me that her now-also-freaked-out horse could take a big, splattering pee on the road, up slope from me. Which then proceeded to trickle downhill towards me. I, of course, couldn't move. Talk about adding insult to injury.  Although it sounds like a semi-comical scene in retrospect, at the time it was a hot mess of pain, chaos, and general unpleasantness. I was in my … [Read more...]