Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Super Easy Antijitos

It's New Years Eve, and with that comes the get togethers and parties, all of which will have some form of food as well as tasty beverages. If you are hosting a party this year and are stumped on what to make for a quick and easy appetizer, look no further.

This is my go to appetizer that is not only quick and really easy to make (including prep time it only takes approximately 15-20 minutes), but it's also pretty cheap as well (I spent roughly $10).

Super Easy Antijitos


1-250g brick of plain cream cheese at room temperature
1/2 cup shredded  marble cheddar cheese
1/3 cup hot salsa
4-6 large white (or whole wheat flour tortillas)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

In a medium sized bowl, mix together the first 3 ingredients until well blended (I use a metal spoon, but you could use a hand mixer if you wish to speed things up a bit).

Using a spreading knife (or a spatula) spread a layer of the cream cheese mixture onto a flour tortilla, spreading it all the way to its edges (do this for each tortilla until the mixture is used up).

Fold in sides and top of tortilla approximately 1/2 inch inward. Now roll the top folded portion down tightly until you have essentially made a tortilla roll up.

Now cut the rolled tortilla into equal pinwheel sections and place on an aluminum foil lined baking tray.

Place tray in oven and bake for 8-10 minutes. Serve immediately with salsa and sour cream for dipping & enjoy!

Take Care & Happy New Year,


Monday, December 30, 2013

30 Day Challenge - Beach Body Workout

With New Years around the corner, many people will be making the resolution to lose weight, and with that being said, this 30 day challenge could be a perfect way to start that resolution.

With each day already planned for you, there is no reason for you to question what you should be doing at the gym (or at home). No need to put together a workout plan because that part is already done for you; all you have to do is stick to it and don't give up.

Take Care,


Friday, December 27, 2013

New Years' Decorations

With Christmas now over, I find that many people start to take down their decorations and their homes seem so "blah" and bare without the decorations.

An easy way to transition out of the highly decorative Christmas decorations, it to decorate lightly (or heavily if you want...no one will judge) for New Years.

If you are like me and like to do more traditional Christmas themed decorations, you will be able to reuse your gold garland, beads and/or ornaments to decorate for the New Year.

It can be as simple as you see in the image above: gold beads in a bowl with a candle. Or even a decorative bowl filled with Silver and/or Gold ornaments.

Take Care,


Thursday, December 26, 2013

White Chocolate Pistachio Bark

A few years ago my Dad got my older sisters and I each a package of white chocolate pistachio & cranberry bark; until this time I didn't really like white chocolate, but I didn't want to be rude so I tried some of it.

Not only did this make me start liking white chocolate, but I am now addicted to this stuff!
Here's the recipe for White Chocolate Pistachio & Cranberry Bark:


1lb. of white chocolate
1/2 cup shelled pistachios
1/2 cup dried cranberries


1. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and set aside.

2. Melt the white chocolate over a double boiler (or in 30-second intervals in the microwave on 50% power, stirring after each). Once the chocolate is melted, remove from the heat and let sit for a few minutes to cool slightly, stirring occasionally. Add the pistachios and cranberries and stir to combine.

3. Spread the chocolate mixture onto the prepared pan in an even layer (depending on the size of the pan and how thick you'd like your bark, you may not need the entire surface of the pan).

4. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes, or until set.

5. Using a sharp knife, cut the bark into pieces. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

That's it! Now sit back and enjoy this delicious confection...and don't forget to share.

Take Care,


Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Fun Christmas Workout {Elf The Movie Workout}

First off, I would like to say Merry Christmas (to those of you who celebrate the holiday).

Seeing as it's Christmas, you are probably sitting around and watching Christmas movies. One of my newer favourites is the movie "Elf" with Will Farrell.

If you find yourself watching this movie today, why not make a fun and easy to follow workout out of it?!

Follow the prompts in the image above for the various exercises listed; I'm not going to lie, you will be doing a lot of planks in this workout. Any time you hear the name "Buddy" or "Elf" you will have to hold a 30 second plank.

Good luck & have fun!

Take Care & Merry Christmas,


Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Christmas Decor {Festive Chair Backs}

It's Christmas Eve, and many people are preparing their homes for family and friends and the big Christmas feast. With these things comes decorating your home for the occasion!

For your dining table, why not dress up your chair back with something like this simple yet beautiful festive chair tie backs.

If you're doing this last minute and don't have access to pine cones, you can still do simple red (or green) ribbon tie backs (try tying them into a more decorative style of bow).

It's that simple to make your dining room decor that much more festive.

Take Care,


Monday, December 23, 2013

Easy Peanut Butter Fudge

For all of my peanut butter & candy lovers out there, here's an easy and delicious recipe for you: 


2 cups sugar
1/2 cup milk
1 tsp. vanilla
3/4 cup peanut butter – chunky or smooth.

Place sugar and milk into a medium sized pot and bring slowly to a boil over medium heat.
Continue to boil for two minutes.
Take off the stove and add in your peanut butter and vanilla.
Spread into a wax paper (or plastic wrap) lined pan.
Allow to cool (works best if left in fridge overnight). 
Cut up & Enjoy.

Take Care,


Friday, December 20, 2013

Weekly "Anywhere" Workout

Do you find that working out every other day makes it hard for you to stay motivated and committed to working out consistently through the week? (that's my problem at the moment).

If this sounds like you, maybe it'd will be easier if you make yourself do small workouts through out the week (6 out of 7 days).

Take a look at this awesome weekly workout routine from Fit Sugar that has you doing 6 smaller routines throughout the week:

All you have to do is follow each daily routine, going through each exercise with little or no rest in between, then repeat 3 times. It's a simple as that.

Take Care,


Thursday, December 19, 2013

Quick & Easy Shoe Organization {Shoe Closet}

This post is for all of my shoe fanatics out there.
If you find that your shoes need more space to breathe and be admired, I'm with you on that one.

Here's an awesome idea to store your shoe collection, in a way that showcases their beauty, similar to department stores.

I don't know why this thought never occurred to me; I used to work at a shoe store back in college that used bookcases to display out shoes and boots.

All you need is a few tall bookcases with adjustable shelves and you are good to go. No more digging through a crowded closet to find the shoes to match your outfit with this easily accessible alternative.

Take Care,


Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Spinach Artichoke Dip Bites

If there's one appetizer that is becoming increasingly popular over the last few years, it's spinach & artichoke dip, usually served with warm pita bread slices or tortilla chips.

What could be better than this you may ask; individual spinach & artichoke bites.


1 (8 oz.) package softened cream cheese (I used reduced fat)
1/4 cup mayo
1/2 cup grated parmesan or romano cheese
2 cloves garlic, peeled and minced
1 (14 oz.) can artichoke hearts, drained and chopped
1 cup frozen chopped spinach, thawed and drained
2 tubes of crescent roll dough
shredded mozzarella (optional)

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.  Lightly spray mini muffin tins with baking spray.
Combine the first six ingredients in a large bowl, stirring well and set mixture aside.
Roll your crescent roll dough out onto a large cutting board/work surface.  Working with half of the dough at time (4 triangles), pinch all of the creases together so that you’re left with one big piece of dough.
Cut the dough into 12 roughly even squares (either using a knife, or pizza cutter).
Press a dough square into each section of a mini muffin tin.
Using a teaspoon, fill each cup with the spinach & artichoke mixture.
Sprinkle each spinach & artichoke bite with a little shredded mozzarella.
Bake in the oven for 12 minutes.
Wait until they’re cool enough to touch ( a few minutes), then use a spoon to get them out of the pan & onto a plate or serving dish.
Serve & Enjoy!
Take Care,

Tuesday, December 17, 2013

Handstand Master {Yoga}

When you look back at your childhood, I bet there are things that you did back then, that you wish you could still do now. One of those things for me is doing a handstand.

If this is something that you would also like to be able to do, then follow the steps below and you will work your way up to it as you build up the strength in the muscles that enable you to perform a  handstand (there is a lot of core strength that is required).

Level 1 (Beginner)
Stand with your back and heels against a wall. Place your hands shoulder-width apart on the floor a few feet in front of you, raising your hips and straightening your legs to come into downward-facing dog (an inverted V). Place your right foot flat on the wall so your leg is straight and your thigh is parallel to the floor. Brace your core, then slowly place your left foot next to your right. With both legs straight, shift your weight so that your shoulders are directly over your wrists (you'll be in an L shape). Hold, then bend your knees and slowly lower one foot to the floor at a time.

Level 2 (Intermediate)
Repeat phase 1, then lift your right leg off the wall, lifting your heel toward the ceiling while keeping your hips and toes square to the wall. Your left leg is still parallel to the floor, with your foot flat on the wall. Hold, keeping your core tight, arms straight, and neck relaxed, then slowly bring your right foot back to the wall and switch legs. To release, bring both feet back to the wall, bend your knees, and slowly lower one foot at a time.

Level 3 (Advanced)
Face the wall and place your hands shoulder-width apart on the floor about 10 inches away from it. Get into downward-facing dog, then walk your feet in a few inches, stacking your shoulders over your wrists. Brace your core and slowly raise your left heel toward the ceiling, leg straight. Keep your hips square, arms straight, and neck relaxed. Hold, gazing toward your fingertips, then lower your leg and switch sides.

Level 4 (Expert)
Start in downward-facing dog with your hands shoulder-width apart and legs straight. Walk your feet forward, shifting your weight onto your hands and stacking your shoulders over your wrists. With your arms straight and core tight, lift your right leg toward the ceiling, keeping your hips square. Bend your left knee and gently hop to raise your left leg toward the ceiling, bringing your hips over your shoulders. Hold, then slowly come down one leg at a time. 

And that's it. If you follow these instructions and keep at it, you will be well on your way to being able to perform (and hold) a handstand.

Take Care,


*Note: To master more difficult Yoga poses, follow the link to Womens Health Magazine's webpage.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Natural Seating {DIY Log Bench}

When you're out at a friend's place in the country sitting around a campfire on either some big rocks with sharp edges, or logs that feel like they'll roll away from under you at any minute, I bet you're wishing there were some more practical seating around.

Why not start up a new DIY project and make yourself and your guests more comfortable with log bench seating?! For log "sofa" you will need a chainsaw, but for more simple designs, you can use a regular saw and some nails (or screws).

That's it; one more way to be stylish and comfy in the great outdoors.

Take Care,


Friday, December 13, 2013

Pilates Abs

When many people want abs, they tend to turn to crunches and/or sit ups, but few people initially turn to pilates moves.

If this sounds like you, then I hate to tell you this, but you are missing out. With that being said, here are some excellent pilates moves that will tone and tighten your abdominal region:

1. Mermaid with Ball

Complete 8-10 reps per side with little to no rest between, holding the pose for 2-3 seconds.

2. Rollover

Complete 8-10 reps.

3. Footwork on Ball

Complete 8-10 reps.

4. Swan on Ball

Complete 8-10 reps with little to no rest between, holding the pose for 2-3 seconds.

5. Back Arm Row

Complete 8-10 reps.

6. Mermaid with Twist

Complete 8-10 reps per side with little to no rest between.

7. Roll Up

Complete 8-10 reps.

8. Ball Sit Up Extension

Complete 8-10 reps with little to no rest between, holding the pose for 1-2 seconds.

If you do these moves 2-3 times per week, and are diligent, you will see results.

*Note: For complete explanation on how to perform these exercises please follow the links attached.*

Take Care,


Thursday, December 12, 2013

Enhance Your Ceiling {Wallpaper Ceiling}

There are many ways to add visual interest to a room; unique accessories, art, an accent wall, and so on.

Many people go with an accent wall, but an area that is usually neglected is the ceiling. An easy solution to this; use an interesting wallpaper applied to you ceiling.

Make a nursery more appealing for yourself, and your baby. Choose a playful pattern in a coordinating colour to the accents in the room and give your baby something interesting to stare up at rather than the usual boring ceiling.

Turn an otherwise muted and subdued room into a stimulating and unique space by applying a graphic wallpaper or wall applique to the ceiling. You have to admit, this room looks much more interesting with the printed ceiling.

Take Care,


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Homemade Vanilla Pudding

There are few things in life that taste better than homemade desserts; vanilla pudding is one dessert that tastes way better homemade.


3 cups milk
1 tbsp vanilla  extract
3/4 cup sugar
4 tbsp cornstarch
Pinch of salt
6 egg yolks

Heat milk & vanilla in a heavy bottomed pot on medium heat.

In a medium mixing bowl, combine sugar, cornstarch and salt. Add in the 6 egg yolks.

When the milk just starts to simmer, take a cup of the hot milk and add to the mixing bowl containing the sugar mixture while stirring constantly. Add the contents of the mixing bowl to the pot, whisking constantly until the mixture bubbles and thickens.

Pour into either a large dish, or separate serving dishes.

You can serve this hot or cold, it's up to you.
Both ways are delicious ( I personally like it slightly chilled but not cold).


Take Care,


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Fat Blasting Yoga

Are you a fan of yoga, but when you aren't in a class don't really know what to do as far as creating a fat burning sequence?

If this sounds like you, I have a great yoga sequence for you that is sure too torch fat and burn calories:

Just follow this sequence in alphabetic order 5-10 times. Or if you want to go for 30
minutes, set a timer and just repeat the sequence until the timer goes off.

There you have it, an easy but effective yoga workout that will blast away fat.

Take Care,


Monday, December 9, 2013

Drifting into Style {Driftwood Accent Table}

If you are like me (and the rest of my family), you like to have pieces of furniture or accessories that are not typical and stand out. You know, something that really sets your home apart from your neighbours.

For me, I currently have old copper fire extinguishers that were re-purposed into lamps in my living room.
But what about this:

This driftwood side table is beautiful and could easily give your home a unique flair. It's a perfect addition to a rustic home or country cottage and will definitely add some visual interest to the room.

Take Care,


Friday, December 6, 2013

Famous Neiman Marcus Dip

I have to admit, I have never been to Neiman Marcus, given I am Canadian so I feel that gives me a fair excuse, but it is on my to-do list for shopping.

However, I have been seeing this recipe so much over the last few months that I just had to post it: Neiman Marcus' famous dip (this looks and sounds delicious).

5-6 Green onions, chopped
8 oz. shredded cheddar cheese
1 1/2 cups of mayo
1 jar of "Hormel Real Bacon Bits" (or your grocery store equivalent)
1 pkg slivered almonds

Mix all ingredients together in a medium sized mixing bowl.

Chill for 1-2 hours.

Serve & enjoy with your favourite cracker.

Take Care,


Thursday, December 5, 2013

Dexter Workout

Are you a fan of the TV show Dexter? If you are and have trouble tearing yourself away from "just one more episode" when you know you should workout, then this is the workout for you:

If you are a true Dexter fan you will know that this workout will keep you busy! The great thing is this workout can be applied to any of your favourite shows; just change up the triggers for each exercise.

For example: if you're a fan of Grey's Anatomy your workout could look a little something like this:

Do 5 burpees everytime someone says "seriously".
Do 10 crunches whenever someone calls a code
Do 20 jumping jacks when something goes wrong in a surgery

You get the idea. It can work for any show, just make sure you pick triggers that happen more than once an episode or else it defeats the purpose.

Take Care,


Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Black Claw Foot Tub

I think most people like to have something that is unique in their home, something that you know no one else will have in their home...at least in your neighborhood.

Here's something just like that: a black and gold claw foot bath tub!
Isn't this cool? I find that it's a glamorous and stylish spin on a classic bath fixture.

Take Care,


Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Buffalo Chicken Crescent Ring

If you're like me, you love cooking with chicken, but sometimes fall into a rut and don't know what to make for dinner. This is exactly what happened to me last week when I decided to make this: Buffalo Chicken Crescent Ring.

Normally this would be classified as an appetizer, but to be honest it's really like a panzerotti or calzone. So I looked at a few different recipes and then did an interpretation of my own (I was missing some ingredients and instead of going to the store, I improvised).


2 cans Pillsbury low sodium crescent rolls
3 skinless, boneless chicken breasts, grilled & chopped into small cubes
1/2 cup marble cheddar cheese
3/4 cup Franks Buffalo Sauce
2 green onions, finely chopped
2 tbsp blue cheese salad dressing

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. On a baking pan, arrange squares of crescent dough (square consists of 2 crescent triangles) into a ring and set aside.

Cook chicken until juices run clear. Chop into small cubes and place into a medium sized mixing bowl.

Add remaining ingredients and mix until chicken is thoroughly coated.

Spoon filling in a circular pattern onto the dough ring.

Once all of the filling is used up, fold the remaining dough over to the center of the ring and pinch slightly to form a seal.

Place ring into oven and cook for 12-15 minutes.

Once ring is done cooking, remove from oven and let it cool for 10 minutes (this makes it easier to cut, otherwise the filling oozes out everywhere).

Serve with blue cheese dressing for dipping & enjoy!

Take Care,


Monday, December 2, 2013

Intense Tabata Workout

Lately I find that more and more people are discovering, and falling in love with, Tabata workouts (myself included). 

The funny thing about these workouts is that when you read them over, a lot of the time you think "this sounds easy enough", but then once you try it you are dripping sweat with your heart racing and gasping for air. With that being said, here's a killer Tabata workout that will surely kick your butt:

This workout will kick your butt, and if it isn't hard for you then add some more weight, and if that's still not hard enough for you...well than you are a tank and unstoppable!

Take Care,