We’re not on Whole 30 and we haven’t been on Whole 30 for… like two years. But whenever we’re looking for a new recipe, we tend to search “Whole 30” and then the thing we’re looking for. Whole 30 chicken recipes, Whole 30 taco recipes, etc. If we discover something that is 1. easy and 2. Whole 30 compliant, then we know we can make it a part of our lives on the regular and not feel bad about it. Enter these Whole 30 compliant cinnamon apples.
Honestly, I found this recipe years ago when I was babysitting a little boy who ate a LOT. I wanted to make him something easy and tasty. Since then, this has been a staple in our house AND is often requested by kids I babysit for.
Get ready because it’s the simplest.
Three ingredients for these Whole 30 compliant cinnamon apples:
This post is sponsored by Nurx, but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.
Lately I’ve been listening to a podcast about disease, and it’s got me hyper aware of the importance of preventative maintenance for a variety of health issues. January is National Cervical Health Month, so I’m really excited to share with you some information about HPV and how Nurx is making it easier and super affordable to take charge of your health.
Human Papillomavirus (HPV) is the most commonly transmitted STI (sexually transmitted infection), with nearly 80 million Americans currently infected and 14 million newly infected each year. This next fact really blew my mind: a LOT of people are infected with HPV in their lives (80 percent of sexually active people!) but are unaware they have the virus. In a lot of these cases, the HPV will go away on its own but if it doesn’t, it can cause cancer in the nether regions, including cervical cancer (it causes 34,000 cervical cancer diagnoses each year).
Here’s why I love the HPV screening I’m about to share with you: nearly 25% of women without health insurance have not checked their risk for cervical cancer in the past 5 years. That number is 11% in the general population, so that means women in this country with less access to health care are TWICE AS LIKELY to have never had a screening. Nurx just introduced a Home HPV screening text. In the privacy of your own home, women can have the chance to make better decisions about their health.
Nurx’s Home HPV Screening test is affordable at $15 with insurance and $69 without insurance. The test kit, which is the same quality as a pap smear, checks for 14 strains of HPV that have a higher risk of leading to cervical cancer. The test is really simple, too.
After visiting Nurx.com or downloading the Nurx app, you’ll answer a few questions about your house and the test will be shipped to your door. In the test is an extra long q-tip, plastic tube and bag, sticker with a barcode, and prepaid return envelope.
All you have to do is insert, circle around (if you know what I mean!), drop the swab in the tube, put the tube in the bag, and mail it in the pre-paid envelope. A few days after the medical team receives your sample, you’ll get your results from the Nurx medical team. If the results come back negative, you have a low risk of cervical cancer and don’t need another test for 3 years. If your results are positive, it doesn’t mean you have cervical cancer. The Nurx medical team will work with you to figure out the next steps for you.
If you’re in the 30+ category with me (hello, welcome, want some tea?) guidelines advise to check the risk for cervical cancer with an HPV test every 5 years or a pap smear every 3 years. Nurx does offer a kit for you spring chickens aged 25-29 in case you want to check your risk for cervical cancer between pap smears.
This test is preventative screening, it’s not a treatment or replacement for doctors or health care, which is why I’m so glad that Nurx doesn’t just report back results and helps with the next steps.
Like I mentioned at the beginning, listening to that podcast about disease has made me so grateful to live in a time where there are so many preventative measures… and they come to the comfort of your own home, don’t judge your sweatpants with the holes, and allow you to take control of your health. What a time to be alive.
A few years ago I remember getting my first kit of essential oils and kind of staring at them, wondering what I was ACTUALLY going to EVER do with all of those oils. I started with the doTerra Home Essentials Kit (which was so great). After 8 months of ordering one new thing per month, something just CLICKED and I really started using the oils in my every day life.
At first I thought that using oils every day would look like pouring little drops onto my hand and placing it in magic places or something, but that’s not at all what it looks like for our household.
Today I processed our monthly order and I realized that almost ALL of the order was restocking items we use on the regular, so I thought I’d share the ways we use doTerra products in our every day life!
OnGuard Foaming Hand Soap
Of all the items we use daily, this one we probably use more than any other one. Both of our sinks have bottles of OnGuard foaming hand soap. after buying the two dispensers, I now just buy the refill bottles. One of the refill bottles fills up two dispensers, and we tend to go through one refill bottle a month.
Another daily product for us. This was one of the first products I started using from doTerra. We use the OnGuard toothpaste every time we brush our teeth, and when I find myself having to use Crest or Colgate, I realize how much I really love the OnGuard toothpaste.
We’ve discovered that these peppermint beadlets are super multi-functional. Upset stomach? Pop a beadlet. Bad breath? Pop a beadlet. Head starting to hurt? Pop a beadlet. They’re really affordable and help with any daily problems our bodies might have.
Purify Shoe Spray
Shoes can get so stinky, and after months of trying to just deal, I put some Purify + witch hazel + water into a little spray bottle (we’re in the process of getting bigger spray bottles) and spray it into the shoes every night.
OnGuard Hand Sanitizing Spray
Listen, I make a living digging clothes out of giant piles of discarded donations. There’s some NASTY AF stuff in those bins. But I use the OnGuard hand spray afterwards. It’s my go-to hand spray.
Not only do we use purify as spray, but after using the bathroom we often straight up just put a few drops of purify straight into the toilet to help neutralize any stink left over. It’s kinda funny because purify smells like cilantro so our bathroom smells like cilantro most of the time.
Serenity pillow spray + blend
I used to use Lavender on my feet and THEN I got the Serenity blend, which has lavender but also a bunch of other relaxing oils in the blend. It’s my bedtime jam. I made a pillow spray with witch hazel + Serenity + water. Shake well to combine and then spray on linens. I also made the serenity into a rollerball – Serenity oil + Fractionated coconut oil. The Serenity is put on my feet and my spine. Basically I sleep all covered in Serenity.
Lemon + Witch Hazel Toner
For YEARS I’ve sworn by the lemon + witch hazel toner magic, and I’ve seriously seen a HUGE reduction in my breakouts since I’ve started using this. We usually just squirt a little witch hazel on a cotton swab and then put a drop or two of lemon on top and wipe it across our faces.
So there you have it! I think it’s easy to buy oils and get overwhelmed at how exactly to use them, so I hope this helps y’all start thinking of ways to incorporate essential oils into your life. If you use essential oils, leave me a comment and tell me what you most commonly use them for!
If there’s bad one habit I’ve carried with me for my whole life, it’s nail biting. It’s driven people mad, it’s made me really ashamed of my hands (and I was a piano player so that made me even ultra insecure), and I’ve even bled all over the piano because my nails were so short and I was playing so hard.
And yet.. I always acquired lots of nail polish. I’d paint my toe nails, but I always felt incomplete because I was too insecure to pain my finger nails.
Then in my senior year of high school I read an article (probably in like seventeen magazine) which mentioned that manicures were good for people trying to bite their nails because they’d go to bite them and be reminded of the work that went into taking care of them. IDK, but I started thinking beyond nails dipped in hot sauce and nasty flavored polishes to help me curb my nail biting habit.
I still struggle with nail biting, but here are some tips I’ve picked up along the way that have helped me slow down my nail biting habit.
ONE // MANICURES
I’m going to have to agree with 16-years-ago seventeen magazine. When I finally overcame the guilt of having chewed down nails and went to get a manicure, I was absolutely amazed. It wasn’t just about painting my nails, but it was about taking care of all areas of my nails (the beds, the skin around it, the hands) and even when my nails were short I was able to be excited about them being well… um… manicured.
Keep in mind that if your nails are so short that you’re bleeding or it’s painful to the touch, a manicure is not for you just yet.
TWO // FILE YOUR NAILS
Yo, keep a nail file with you AT ALL TIMES, especially if you’re starting to get some traction with avoiding the nail biting. All it takes is having your nail snag on something and feeling tempted to stick that nail in your mouth and rip it off. I cannot tell you how many times my efforts to grow my nails out have been thwarted by things like sweaters and pop cans.
Keeping your nails painted is a great way to avoid nail biting, especially if you go with bold, bright colors. As you bring your fingers to your mouth, the color is almost a warning that what you’re about to do might have some consequences – you’ll suddenly be forced to connect the idea of chipped, broken, messed up nails with the desire to bite your nails. I’ve found that keeping my nails painted is a really great way to avoid biting them. In fact, sometimes if I notice my nails are getting exceptionally long I will literally go “I NEED TO PAINT MY NAILS RIGHT NOW” because the longer my nails are, the more tempted I am to tear them to shreds. Why that is, I’m not sure.
I’m like a nail polish hoarder, so on my 101 list I made the goal of getting rid of all but 5 nail polishes and using them until they’re empty. When I came to Nashville, I only brought a few of them and I’ve been considering keeping these 5. I used to have a Julep subscription, and then I realized that I would literally never go through all of the nail polish I got at the rate I was acquiring them (I kept forgetting to skip the month!) and so I cancelled my subscription. But the polishes dry really fast and they have a huge plethora of colors.
IDK if you’ve licked a pile of lotion or hand sanitizer lately, but they are 1. foul and 2. really bad for you. It’s kind of like dipping your fingertips in hot sauce but it also has a benefit – keeping your hands moisturized helps prevent hangnails, keep your hands soft and often give you a fun little scent. I’ve also found that when my hands are moisturized, I have no real desire to bite my nails. Like fresh out of the shower? Nail biting isn’t as fun or rewarding.
The hand sanitizer, though. If I’m desperate to not bite my nails (think hangnail and I don’t have a nail file) I will put hand sanitizer on. It is the biggest nail biting aversion I have at my disposal.
Wearing colored lipstick or lip gloss helps because it creates a mess when you bite your nails. Seriously, I dare you to try and bite your nails without touching your lips. and then I dare you to put lipstick on and try to bite your nails without getting lipstick on your hands. There’s something about additional consequences beyond fingers hurting and short ugly nails that makes you stop and think twice.
I always try to keep mints on hand so I can pop them in my mouth as a deterrent. Nail biting is considered an oral compulsive habit, so giving your mouth something else to do (like mints or gum) helps, too.
Nature’s Bounty Hair, Skin & Nails Gummies on Amazon
SIX // VITAMINS
I converted to these gummy biotin vitamins after seeing Caitlin switch from Olly over to these (her arguments are solid – cheaper and more servings) and regardless of if it actually helps me grow my hair and nails longer and stronger, I feel like it does and sometimes it’s mind over matter. When I take vitamins to help my nails grow, I feel like I have to help my body out by biting them less. Probably all in my head, like most things are 😉
My nails are definitely not long and beautiful, but if you’d seen where they were at when I was 15 and where they’re at now they look like they belong to a completely different person. I’m a big fan of taking whatever little tiny wins I can get, so these are all of the ways I have little victories over my nail biting habit.
Drop me a comment if you’ve got some tips and tricks I’ve never heard or if you have experience as a chronic nail biter!
ps painting my nails was totally on my list of goals for this month and that’s what sparked this blog post 🙂
This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #StopSpills #OnTheGoWithContigo #CollectiveBias
When I was in high school, I was the Water Drinking Master. I would fill up a big pitcher of water and take it downstairs with me to drink when I watched TV. I had no problem in peeing clear (you know, the sign of being REALLY REALLY hydrated) and since I had yet to discover coffee, it was literally the only thing I consumed.
Fast forward 15 years and I struggle to consume enough water every day. In fact, when I complain about not feeling well due to a headache or stomachache or just feeling off, Justen asks me if I’ve had any water lately. The answer, 9 times out of 10, is a sheepish, “well.. no.”
There are two methods people have to determine how much water you should be drinking. The first is based on the individual: you take your weight and divide it by two. That’s how many ounces you should drink every day. The other one is just 64 ounces (8 x 8oz glasses).
Drinking water can be HARD! Especially now that I’m trying to get ready for my wedding (omg what!) I’m working on taking care of myself better, including drinking more water. Here are five ways to sneak more water into your day:
#1. Carry your water bottle everywhere.
Here’s an easy one: Have a water bottle with you at all times, so that you always have access to water. Every time you leave your house make sure you fill up your water bottle to take with you. It’s hard to drink more water if you’re never around it!
#2. Get a bigger water bottle
If the recommended amount of water is 64 oz a day, get a water bottle that requires you to fill up less. I love this Contigo AUTOSEAL® Chill Bottle because it’s 24 ounces! That means that you only have to fill it up three times and you’ve exceeded your daily goal! I love the function of this water bottle – it has a spill-proof lid with auto seal technology, so you press and release the water. While you carry your water bottle everywhere you don’t have to worry about spills or leaks. It even has spout cover to keep dirt and germs away.
I picked one up at Target (they’re only $19.99 for a limited time!) for me and my best friend Emily. We each chose Target exclusive colors; mine was Very Berry, hers was Matte Black with Iced Aqua. They were located on an endcap in the housewares aisle or you can pick yours up online here.
#3. Write a checklist in your planner
I love to check things off of lists, so every day I write little boxes in my planner so I can check things off as I do them, and there’s always a spot for water. Knowing that you have a goal and a way to track it definitely helps.
#4. Set an alarm
If you’re like me, sometimes you start your day off well and with great plans for the day and before you know it the day is gone. All too often I’ve chugged a LOT of water right before bed which has caused me to wake up in the middle of the night to pee – I’d rather stay hydrated throughout the day if it was up to me. To help remember, you can set an alarm to go off as often as you need to remember to take some chugs.
#5. Sip at red lights.
After you start taking your water bottle everywhere, don’t miss out your chance to sneak water in while you’re in the car! Get in the habit of taking a few sips while you’re at red lights.
Especially with winter melting to spring and leading into summer, it’s so important to stay hydrated! Check for the Contigo Autoseal Chill Water bottle at Target and check out Contigo on Instagram and Facebook to stay inspired to keep hydrated.
I’ve been in an on-and-off-again relationship with my FitBit for the past two… three? years. I cashed in my piggy bank to buy it, and often bounce between being OBSESSED with it and leaving it dying in my bathroom.
But let’s be real – nothing feels better than to feel the celebratory buzzing of my FitBit when I’ve crushed my daily step goals. and so my FitBit and I are more on than off, which has caused me to discover some REALLY COOL THINGS to take your FitBit relationship to the next level. Read on.
I know that a few of my friends received FitBits for Christmas, so I wanted to compile these tips and share them!
ONE // PRETTY COVERS
Y’all, if you’re like me… the cute colors and designs are cool and all until you’re wondering if anyone else notices your hot pink FitBit band doesn’t match your outfit. A huge portion of the reason my FitBit has stayed “OFF” is because the plastic little bracelets – regardless of how many colors I have – never really seem to fit with my style. They don’t FIT one BIT. See what I just did there?
THEN! Then Tory Burch debuted her FitBit covers and my best friend and I were like :O at both how beautiful AND how expensive they were.
Here’s a picture of the FitBit cover in action. Does this look like a FitBit or a pretty bracelet?! Mine is for a FitBit Flex, but I’ve seen options for other versions – but since I’ve never used them, I can’t vouch for those. Just mine! 🙂
TWO // PEOPLE WILL PAY YOU TO USE YOUR FITBIT
You guys, I’m not even making this up. There’s a site called Achievemint that will give you points for your FitBit activity (which includes SLEEP, you guys!) which can be cashed out at $10 increments. If you use my link, you’ll get 250 points to start you off.
Did you know you could be earning Walgreens Balance rewards points as well? A few weeks ago I bought something from Walgreens.com that was $13.99 but I had $10 in Balance Rewards from using my FitBit, PLUS an online coupon code I found using Honey, and then I had it delivered to a store instead of my house so I didn’t pay shipping and I ended up spending…. $1.88. Y’all, connect your FitBit to your Walgreens Balance Rewards account! Like right now.
THREE // YOU CAN USE YOUR FITBIT TO HELP MEET SAVINGS GOALS
I could and probably should write an entire post about Qapital. It’s an app that helps you save money. You connect your bank account and add goals and rules to help fund them. For example, I have a “round up rule” activated for my Disneyland savings goal. Say I spent $4.37 at Starbucks. It would be rounded up to the next dollar ($5.00) and the difference ($.63) is put in my Qapital savings account. I’ve built up an account of over $50 simply by doing this.
One of the rules you can make is an IFTTT formula where hitting your FitBit goals initiates a transfer. So for every day I hit my FitBit step goals (and if you follow me on Twitter you’ll know because I also created a formula that pushes it through to Twitter!) $1 will be transferred into my Disneyland account.
Achivemint is someone else’s money and Qapital is using small amounts of your money to save. I’m so excited to have added the FitBit rule to my Disneyland account!
Have you ever heard of DietBet? It’s a site where you bet on yourself to lose a certain amount of weight. The money gets pooled together with everyone else in your game, and if you lose the required amount of weight you get your bet money back AND you split the money of everyone who didn’t meet their goals. DietBet has started a similar new game called StepBet. It’s very similar except they look at your FitBit activity and then give you goals to make you work a little harder.
There’s also a similar app called Pact, where you agree to a certain exercise/food goal, and you pay a fee if you miss a day (starting at $5! – yikes!) and those collected fees are used to pay out people who have kept their pacts.
The great news about these is that they really light a fire under your butt because they COST YOU MONEY if you slack off. Suddenly that little blinking bracelet is a bigger deal, amiright?!
So there you have it – four things every FitBit owner needs to be aware of. Do you have a FitBit, and are there any things you’ve figured out that you want to share with the rest of us?! 🙂