Thursday, September 29, 2011

Clean Eating Caramel Popcorn

So, the way to this girl's heart is through her way of a GOOD popcorn.  I know that this may sound absolutely absurd, but it is the truth.  I am getting a tin of Garrett's Popcorn from my Mom for my should be delivered today and I cannot even being to tell you how excited I am to indulge myself this weekend :)

However, I decided that since I love my popcorn SO much I wanted to find a recipe for Clean Caramel Popcorn since it is my favorite.  My go-to recipe website is The Gracious Pantry and low and behold...there was a clean eating caramel popcorn I though that I would share!

Clean Eating Caramel Popcorn


1/4 cup almond butter or peanut butter
1/2 cup honey
8-10 cups popped popcorn


Tip: Read through the steps first so you know what you to. You’ll need to work quickly.

Step 1 – In a small pot, warm the honey on high heat. Bring it to a boil.
Step 2 – Let it boil up in the pot about 1 inch and then quickly remove from heat.
Step 3 – Stir in nut butter with a whisk and whisk until smooth. Should be “pourable”.
Step 4 – Pour over the popcorn and mix with a spoon. The mixture is hot, so don’t be tempted to mix with your hands. I learned that the hard way (Duh!!).
Step 5 – Let it all sit and cool. To me, it tastes better cold. But that could just be me.

Eat and Enjoy!

So go and check out The Gracious Pantry if you haven't already!  Tiffany posts TONS of great, healthy recipes :)

8 One-Minute Better Body Tricks.

8 One-Minute Better Body Tricks

by FITNESS Magazine

Your exercise regimen doesn’t have to take over your life. Getting the fitness result you want—whether it’s losing weight or reshaping your body—can be as simple as squeezing in an extra 30 seconds here or minute there. These fast, tiny tweaks to your program will help you rev your energy level, burn more calories and sculpt new muscle. Incorporate our one-minute workout boosters into your daily routine and say good-bye to flab for good.

1. Do a Kegel while you crunch.

Contract your pelvic-floor muscles—the ones that you use to stop the flow of urine—as you lift and lower. “This will help you recruit more of the entire abdominal group and make the muscles work harder,” says Michele Olson, Ph.D., a professor of exercise physiology at Auburn University in Montgomery, Alabama.

2. Close your eyes on the ball.

"Doing abdominal moves on a stability ball with your eyes closed is extra challenging," says Nick Martella, a fitness trainer at Sky Athletic Club in Rockville Centre, New York. "Because you don’t have a focal point,
 your body senses that it’s in an unstable environment and your core muscles have to work harder to stay balanced."

3. Target your belly during strength-training breaks.

That minute between weight sets is valuable workout time. Take advantage by filling it with ab moves. You won't have to do crunches at the end of your workout (when you may be tired out), and it'll keep your heart rate elevated, upping your calorie burn.

4. Bump up the resistance.

"To sculpt any muscle you need to add resistance, and since your arms are extended in this exercise, it's more difficult," says Ellen Barrett, founder of and star of the new video Crunch: Fat-Burning Pilates (Anchor Bay, $9.95). Grab a pair of dumbbells or a medicine ball. Lie back with knees bent, feet flat. Extend arms straight back so that your biceps are next to your ears and dumbbells are about an inch off the floor. With abs tight, slowly crunch up and down, keeping arms stationary. Do two sets of 15 lifts.

5. Slo-mo your moves.

"Take four counts to lift and two to lower," says Peter Francis, Ph.D., a professor of exercise and nutritional sciences at San Diego State University. "Research has shown that abdominal-muscle activity is significantly greater when lifting than when lowering," he explains. "When you slow down the upward phase, you spend more time in the most beneficial part of the exercise." At this rate, you should be able to do only about 10 crunches per minute.

6. Lunge day and night.

First thing in the morning and last thing before bedtime, do five rear lunges (step back and lower until front thigh is parallel to floor) on each leg and then do five squats, suggests Lawrence Biscontini, a Reebok master trainer and group fitness manager for Wyndham's Golden Door Spa in Puerto Rico. You'll definitely notice the difference in your rear view: "This one-minute addition to your day adds up to 300 lunges and 150 squats per month. That's a lot of leg and butt toning," he says

7. Tighten your tush while you wait.

Make use of your downtime -- standing in line, sitting in the car or waiting in the doctor's office -- by squeezing and releasing your gluteal muscles for one minute, suggests Biscontini. "And when you're finished, draw your navel toward your spine for 30 seconds to work the deep abdominal muscles."

8. Give your triceps an extra boost.

"After finishing a set of overhead triceps extensions, hold the weight up with elbows slightly bent. Squeeze your elbows in toward your head 12 to 15 times as an extra push for the backs of the arms," suggests Liz Neporent, a FITNESS advisory board member and creative director at Plus One Fitness in New York City.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

It's here!!!

Tomorrow the Penguins pre-season schedule kicks off....which means I get to say my 5 favorite words.  What are they????

You will have to wait and find out tomorrow :)

Eric Tangradi - Toronto Maple Leafs v Pittsburgh Penguins

Kris Letang Kris Letang #58 of the Pittsburgh Penguins  winds up to shoot against the Phoenix Coyotes on December 20, 2010 at CONSOL Energy Center in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Monday, September 19, 2011

I am one lucky girl...

I came to realize this past weekend how lucky I am.

I was raised in an awesome family, some of whom I am related to by blood, some of whom became family because we are so close.  Not many people can say that they have been friends with someone their whole life... I can say that I have been blessed with not 1, but 5 friends that I have had my whole life.  This past weekend I got to spend time with 4 of them for one of their weddings...

Eric, Holly, Ryan, Me, and Mark

Rich was the only one missing this weekend...but he got married in March so most of us were together then.

Diana, Rich, and Me

Eric is the next one to get hitched...and his wedding is next year.

Then, the wedding that I am most excited for....Holly is getting married!  She is the little sister that I never had...and I am absolutely HONORED that she asked me to be her Maid of Honor...I am looking forward to planning her special day with her...and celebrating with my lifelong friends again :)

Holly and Me

As I go through my matter how difficult things get...when I feel like I have no one left to turn to...I know that I can rely on these friends to get me through.  I could not speak with them for years, and I would have to do is make a phone call and they would be here in a flash.  Those are the best kind of friendship...the ones that come easily and that you don't have to work hard to keep.  I love my friends. :)

“Even though we’ve changed and we’re all finding our own place in the world, we all know that when the tears fall or the smile spreads across our face, we’ll come to each other because no matter where this crazy world takes us, nothing will ever change so much to the point where we’re not still friends.”

Friday, September 16, 2011

Happy Day!

Happy Friday!

Today is a big day for me because I am ONE STEP closer to reaching on of my goals!

Today I officially paid off one of my credit cards AND one of my medical bills.  It is a happy day for me!

I am well on my way to a CREDIT CARD FREE life and I am so excited that I can hardly contain myself.  I learned an important lesson when it comes to credit...if you can't pay for it...don't buy it!

Tonight I am also going to see Wicked with my Mom and a very close friend of our family, Kam (she is like my other Mom).  I am SO excited because I have been waiting to see Wicked for YEARS!

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Lives Lost...

If you didn't already know, I am a HUGE hockey fan.  I mean, I live and breathe hockey between the first game of the season and the last game of the finals.  If I am having a bad day, hockey makes me happy :) (I could use a good hockey game to watch today!).

Unfortunately, this year has not been a good one for hockey players around the world.  Amidst the concussions, suspensions, and shotty refereeing, the hockey world has been hit by a plague of unfortunate, untimely death.  I hate that I am posting this blog, but with the NHL season right around the corner, I wanted to pay tribute to those lives lost in the hockey world since the beginning of bear with me here...

Tom Cavanagh - Formerly of the San Jose Sharks

Derek Boogard - New York Rangers

Rick Rypien - Winnipeg Jets

The Yaroslavl Lokomotiv hockey team lost all but one member in Wednesday's crash in Russia. The passenger list, provided by the Russian Ministry of Emergency Situations:

Vitaly Anikeyenko
Yury Bakhvalov
Aleksandr Belyayev
Mikhail Balandin

Aleksandr Vasyunov - New Jersey Devils

Josef Vasicek - Most recently of the New York Islanders

Aleksandr Vyukhin
Robert Dietrich

Pavol Demitra - Vancouver Canucks

Andrei Zimin
Marat Kalimulin
Aleksandr Karpovtsev
Aleksandr Kalyanin
Andrei Kiryukhin
Nikita Klyukin
Igor Korolyov
Nikolai Krivonosov
Yevgeny Kunnov
Vyacheslav Kuznetsov
Stefan Liv
Jan Marek

Brad McCrimmon - Coach and Player for Various Teams
Sergey Ostapchuk
Vladimir Piskunov

Karel Rachunek - New Jersey Devils

Evgeny Sidorov

Karlis Skrastins - Dallas Stars

Ruslan Salei - Detroit Red Wings

Pavel Snurnitsyn
Daniil Sobchenko
Ivan Tkachenko
Pavel Trakhanov
Igor Urychev
Gennady Churilov
Maksim Shuvalov
Artyom Yarchuk

Some Inspiration for the day...

Inspirational Picture Quote

Inspirational Picture Quote


The 412 Fit Club starts THIS SUNDAYYYY!!!  From 2 pm - 3 pm...Come out and join us for a fun FREE workout!

Check out or send me a message at for more details...

I hope to see you there!!!