The Best Kind of Weekend – Almost No Plans

Hi, guys! A very happy Monday to you!

How was your weekend? Ours was low-key and included minimal plans, which, honestly, was the best type of weekend. The fall has been crazzzzy for our family – and with me off to Israel later this week, a quiet weekend was exactly what we needed. Here’s a recap!

Friday

I finally enjoyed my first Pumpkin Spice Latte of the season. I actually shared my order on Instagram Stories and received a TON of questions about it, so I wanted to share it here, too. PSLs can be serious sugar- and calorie-bombs, so here’s how I ordered mine: Tall with almond milk, 1.5 pumps of syrup (a regular tall has 4), and no whipped cream. Easy as that – and it was still very delicious! 🙂

We stayed in Friday night – ate dinner and went to bed early.

Saturday

Quinn was awake super early on Saturday morning, so after some snuggle time, I started to chores around the house (laundry, dishes, etc.) while he played. Once Mal was awake, we got ourselves ready and headed to CrossFit. Photo below: Mal and Quinn discussing what flavor of donuts they wanted to get at Coffee Shack after CrossFit. Mal’s pick: Honey Dip. Quinn’s pick: Chocolate Frosted.

After CrossFit, we headed to the party store for Quinn’s Halloween costume. He decided on Spiderman (because “he can shoot webs from his hands”), but the store was sold out of his size. Whomp whomp. We tried to pick out a second choice option, but Quinn wasn’t into it. Oh, well. We figured we still had time and it made more sense to find a costume he was excited about before dropping $30 on one he didn’t really like.

We did, though, find a bunch of CREEP decorations for our house! Quinn was wayyyyyy more into the decorations than Halloween costume! 🙂

After that, we stopped by Trader Joe’s to do our grocery shopping for the week. I tend to be a bit of an over-shopper with our groceries, so I decided to reign it in and mostly eat from our freezer and pantry this week. On the menu for dinner: Maple Bacon Hash, high-protein pasta with meat sauce, Shepherd’s Pie, tacos, and lemon rosemary chicken (from Trader Joe’s).

During nap time, a special package from my friends at AVIA arrived. They’re gear is so cute and SUPER AFFORDABLE. Seriously, some of their clearance items are less than $5! And their high-support sports bras ($12.46) are some of my favorite for CrossFit workouts.

After Quinn woke up from his nap, we went to one of his friend’s birthday parties. We heard Trick-Or-Treating was involved, so he dressed up as a Ghostbuster (Proton Pack from aunt Sibylle via Amazon).

The party was a lot of fun, and Quinn’s favorite part was playing with the huge T-Rex Dinosaur. He seriously loved every second of it!

Sunday

Sunday morning kicked off with a big ol’ pancake breakfast. The boys had Mal’s famous -like pancakes in dinosaur molds.

I “healthified” my pancakes with ghee, collagen, cinnamon, and a flax egg (1 tbsp ground flaxeed + 2.5 tbsp water).

Yummmmm!

After breakfast, we took a trip to the park for some exercise.

Back at home, we made our house “creeeeeeepy,” ate lunch together, and then Quinn went down for his nap.

After nap time, we carved a pumpkin. Quinn wasn’t into scooping out the seeds, but he had fun supervising! 🙂

The rest of the afternoon and evening was spent hanging around the house and getting our lives in order before the start of the week. It was such a nice way to spend the day and wrap up the weekend!

$100 VISA Gift Card Giveaway

Thank you to everyone who entered! Here’s your winner:

Lily

I love honey and a splash of lemon in my morning green tea

Congrats, Lily! Please email me at tina@carrotsncake.com with your full name and mailing address to claim your prize.

Questions of the Day

Have you had a Pumpkin Spice Latte yet this season? If so, how do you order it? 

Would you rather: Tons of weekend plans or very few?

 

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298 – Half Size Me: Why You Must Believe In Yourself To Change Your Mindset And Your Body With Marty Wolfe

In this episode of The Half Size Me™ Show, Heather talks to Marty about what he learned about himself after being a contestant on the Biggest Loser why taking care of yourself needs to happen before focusing on weight loss

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THIS is the Banana Bread You Need to Make Next

Happy Sunday, friends! If you have some brown bananas laying around, I have just the recipe for you!

As you might remember, no food goes to waste in our house, so when we had two very sad bananas, dying a slow death, in our fruit bowl, I knew exactly how to save their lives: banana bread! Mal and Quinn both lovvvveee banana bread, but not the “healthy” kind that I usually bake with almond flour, ground flax, chia seeds, coconut oil, yada yada. They like their banana bread, straight-up, no funny stuff, so that’s exactly what I gave them!

And I know there are thousands of banana bread recipes on the internet, but THIS is the one you should try next. It’s soft and chewy, sweet and delicious, and I’m pretty sure it’s the best banana bread I’ve ever made. I hope you and your family love it as much as we do!

Ingredients:

  • 2 ripe medium-large bananas
  • 2.5 tablespoon butter, softened
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

Directions: Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Combine ingredients in a large mixing bowl. Be sure to mash up and blend bananas. Line a loaf pan with parchment paper or coat with non-stick cooking spray. Pour batter into pan, spread evenly with a spatula, and then bake for 40-45 minutes or until top is lightly browned and bread is cooked all the way through. Allow to cool slightly before slicing and serving.

8 servings

Macros: P 3 C 34 F 5

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5 for Friday

Good morning and happy FRIYAY to you!

So, I thought this new “5 for Friday” blog post idea would make a fun feature on CNC. It seems like a great way to round-up the week with little tidbits about what’s happening on the family front as well as sharing some of my “Friday favorites” and “What I’m Loving Lately.” It’s like the best of both worlds!

FAMILY – So many Halloween costumes, so little time! 

We’re getting really excited for Halloween and have been talking about Quinn’s costume non-stop for weeks now. Up until last week, he wanted to be a ghost like last year. Then, he switched his costume to a bat. The bat idea actually stuck around for awhile, but, just yesterday, he changed his mind to vampire. He’s obsessed with all things “creepy,” so we’ll see what he ultimately picks. We actually might hit up our local party/Halloween store this weekend, so I’ll let you guys know what he picks!

FITNESS – My beloved Ghost Crops are now available in a new pattern! I love these pants so much. They’re super thin, but not see-through (at all) and highly durable. I’ve worn my first pair a zillion times on runs and during CrossFit and Orangetheory workouts and they still look brand new. The best part about these leggings though is that they DON’T SHOW SWEAT. For real. I’m an insanely sweaty person, and I don’t worry about these showing moisture in, um, the wrong places.

FOOD – Munk Pack Protein Cookies. I just wrote about these cookies yesterday, but I just had to mention them again because I’m such a huge fan. They’re a “healthy” treat without a bunch of funny stuff in them, but they taste like a true indulgence. Check out my full review for why I love them so much!

FAMOUS (well, famous-ish for a hot second) – I’m in the November issue of Health magazine! I’m so honored to be featured along side some other awesome bloggers and chefs. I share two of my favorite food swaps that have changed my body for the better over the years. Any guesses what they might be? 🙂

FUN – Sports bras made from 8 recycled plastic bottles! How cool is that? I’m wearing a Mirror Sports Bra from RUMI X, which is made from green technology and crafted from 8 recycled plastic bottles. It’s actually quite the awesome sports bra. I’m not usually someone who can wear one of those strap-y numbers, but this one fits really well and stays put during workouts.

Question of the Day

What’s your little one(s) being for Halloween this year?

Strap-y sports bras: yay or nay? 

P.S. Be sure to enter my giveaway to win a $100 VISA gift card. I’ll pick a winner on Monday morning!

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Grain-Free Pumpkin Spiced Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting

Delicious Grain-Free Pumpkin Spiced Cupcakes topped with a Maple Cream Cheese Frosting make the perfect fall dessert that is fun, festive and made with ingredients you can feel good about eating! 

As most of you know, fall is definitely one of my favorite times of the year because of how fun and festive it is, but let’s be honest, it’s mostly because of all the PUMPKIN recipes I get to make!  Recently I got together with my close friends and their kids for a day at the pumpkin patch full of hay rides, corn mazes and LOTS of apple cider so I wanted to make a dessert to share that everyone could enjoy.  Let me tell you…these Pumpkin Spiced Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting were a HUGE hit!  Not only did the kids love them, but they were the perfect sweet treat to end a fun-filled day.

The best part about these grain-free cupcakes is definitely the flavor!  A delicious combination of cinnamon, nutmeg and pumpkin spices all mixed with a creamy maple-flavored frosting.  Now if that doesn’t get you excited for fall I don’t know what will!

To sweeten my cupcakes I usually like to use about a 1/2 cup of sugar or maple syrup, but for this recipe I swapped out half of the brown sugar I would typically use with Stevia In The Raw® which ended up tasting delicious!  Stevia In The Raw® Bakers Bag is a zero-calorie sweetener that is perfect to use when baking because it actually measures cup for cup with sugar (no confusing conversions necessary!) giving you the same amount of sweetness without all those extra calories.  I still wanted to keep half of the brown sugar in these cupcakes though to achieve the proper browning, rising and caramelization that only sugar can provide in baked goods while still lightning these up.

The sweet taste of Stevia In The Raw® comes straight from the leaves of the stevia plant and also comes in these conveniently packaged, re-sealable bakers bags that can easily be stored right in your pantry.  I also want to note that these bakers bags are nice and BIG too so you can really get a ton of use out of one single bag!

You guys I can’t tell you how ridiculously easy these cupcakes are to make, and with Halloween right around the corner, they would make the perfect addition to your party, work event or even just a fun dessert to enjoy while passing out candy.  I promise your kids will have a blast adding on fun sprinkles and you can even make them festive using Halloween-themed colors.  Here’s a tip: add a couple drops of orange food coloring to your cream cheese frosting while it’s mixing to make orange frosted cupcakes!

I usually make the maple cream cheese frosting right after the cupcakes come out of the oven.  You really want to make sure the cupcakes are nice and cool before topping with frosting because otherwise they’ll become a gooey mess.  To mix up the frosting simply combine the cream cheese, maple syrup and vanilla extract in the bowl of your stand mixer and whip on high until creamy yet still firm.  If you like to use piping bags to frost your cupcakes, you’ll want your frosting a bit firm, but if you prefer a smoother, creamier frosting feel free to add a teaspoon or two of almond milk when mixing.  There really is no wrong way to do this so have fun and make these all your own!

I really hope you all enjoy these delicious grain-free pumpkin spiced cupcakes and don’t forget to tag Eat Yourself Skinny on Instagram or Twitter if you do end up making these!

If you want to know more about Stevia In The Raw® and all the other deliciously sweet In The Raw® products, head on over to their website here or you can easily find Stevia In The Raw® at your local grocery store!

For updates, yummy recipes and MORE, make sure to follow Stevia In The Raw® on Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest!

Grain-Free Pumpkin Spiced Cupcakes with Maple Cream Cheese Frosting
 
Serves: 12 cupcakes

Ingredients
  • 3 cups almond flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 2 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
  • ½ tsp. cinnamon
  • ¼ cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup Stevia In The Raw®
  • 3 eggs, lightly whisked
  • ¼ cup coconut oil, melted
  • ¼ cup almond milk
  • 1 (15 oz) can 100% pumpkin puree
Maple Cream Cheese Frosting:
  • 1 (8 oz) package ⅓ less-fat cream cheese
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp. vanilla extract

Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
  2. In a large bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, pumpkin spice, cinnamon, brown sugar and Stevia In The Raw®. Set aside.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk together eggs, coconut oil, almond milk and pumpkin puree and stir until well-combined.
  4. Pour the wet ingredients in with the dry ingredients and mix really well until there are no clumps (I like to use a hand-mixer for this mixing for about a minute on high).
  5. Divide the pumpkin mixture evenly into 12 prepared muffin cups with cupcake liners and bake in the oven for 20 to 25 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.
  6. Let the cupcakes sit for 5 minutes then remove from pan and let cool completely on a wire rack.
  7. While the cupcakes are cooling, add cream cheese, maple syrup and vanilla extract to the bowl of your stand mixer (or you can use a hand mixer) and whip on high until smooth.
  8. Transfer the frosting to a pastry bag and frost each cupcake using your favorite tip. Top with sprinkles (if desired) and enjoy!

Nutritional Information
Serving Size: 1 cupcake • Calories: 294 • Fat: 18.9 g • Saturated Fat: 6.1 g • Carbs: 19.7 g • Fiber: 4.3 g • Protein: 10.6 g • Sugar: 10.6 g • WW Points+: 8 • Smart Points: 11

This post is sponsored by Stevia In The Raw®.  As always all opinions are 100% my own.

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What I Ate Wednesday – Orangetheory Edition

Hi, guys!

A bunch of you said that you like seeing what I eat in a day (aka “Meals in Monday” or “What I Ate Wednesday), so I plan to keep this type of post alive on CNC. I’m always interested to see what other people eat before and after their workouts, so I thought I’d share how I fueled my Orangetheory workout yesterday. In general, I don’t change my eating habits around workouts all that much, but I do sometimes switch things up, depending on the workout and how I’m feeling. With that, here’s how I fueled and refueled my Orangetheory workout!

7:30 AM: Half of a Munk Pack Protein Cookie

If I work out at 8:30 or 9:00 AM (at KFIT or CrossFit), I typically eat a full breakfast a couple of hours before class. Yesterday, Quinn and I were running behind and OTF wasn’t until 11:15 AM, so I ate half of a cookie to hold off my hunger until I could eat breakfast. I picked a Munk Pack Protein Cookie because 1) it was easily accessible and 2) not made with weird ingredients like some protein cookies on the market. Each cookie is gluten free, NON-GMO, vegan, and doesn’t contain sugar alcohols (hallelujah!), trans fats, dairy, soy, or eggs (also hallelujah since my egg experiment is still going on). The nice people from Munk Pack sent me a few samples, and now I’m a huge fan. I obviously love the ingredients, but the taste is amazing. They’re so soft, chewy, and not too sweet, so they’re perfect for a quick grab-and-go snack or even dessert at the end of the night.

8:30 AM: Three shots of decaf espresso over ice with half & hHalf 

It’s work time at Starbucks, so I ordered my favorite “get sh*t done” drink.

10:00 AM: Chia-Flax Seed + Protein Overnight Oats with a scoop of Teddie Peanut Butter

I’m not starving, but I know I need to eat something before Orangetheory. Lately, I’m loving this overnight oats combination because it’s made with protein and healthy fats, which are good for balancing hormones and keeping me full for awhile. Plus, the oats (carbs) will give me some energy for my workout!

11:15 AM: Orangetheory workout 

1:00 PM: Shredded chicken with BBQ sauce, roasted sweet potatoes, and sauteed baby spinach

Thanks to some Sunday food prep, the ingredients for this meal were waiting for me in the fridge. All I had to do was put them on a plate and pop it in the microwave to heat up. Easy-peasy! I picked a combination of protein (chicken sausage) + sweet potatoes (carbs) to help my body recover from OTF. I’m not super strict about refueling my body right after a workout, but I try to eat (or drink) something within the hour. I often opt for a protein shake (SFH + Maple Water + decaf iced coffee + unsweetened almond milk) because it’s convenient, but if the timing of my workout coincides with a meal, I’ll pick that over a protein shake purely for the higher nutritional value.

4:00 PM: Half of a Munk Pack Protein Cookie

The other half was calling my name! 🙂 I mean, the package was already opened, so the cookie was just getting staler and staler, right? I probably should have picked something a bit more nutritious, but, hey, sometimes a cookie is exactly what you need!

6:00 PM: Chicken sausage with zucchini and parsnip fries

This was another throw-together meal, thanks to some food prep. I opted for high-protein and relatively low-carb and low-fat because I had plans to drink wine with friends later in the evening.

7:30 PM: Glass of wine + a few pieces of cheese 

A couple of my friends hosted an event at a local bar, so I stopped by to support them.

Questions of the Day

Do you change up your meals/snacks depending on your workouts?

What’s your favorite way to refuel after a workout?

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