nourishing & unapologetic
If we're Facebook friends, you've likely seen one of my most recent posts about Plexus.
It's okay if you want to roll your eyes. Go ahead. Do it now. Get it out of your system.
I did it too. Before.
Before I tried the Plexus products. Before I gave the company a chance. And, gave myself a chance.
Yes, I was that girl who occasionally 🙄 at this type of post that was in my newsfeed. I love marketing so give me a witty tagline, a killer graphic, or a good deal--I'm there. Somehow I had dichotomized the product information that companies were pushing at me and the products my friends and colleagues were highlighting in their personal testimonies. I think they both have their place and should be given their due.
So, maybe I've drank the Kool-Aid. Maybe I've lost my wits.
Or maybe I've decided there is more.
More health. More wealth. More friendship. More hope. Can there be more? Can there be better?
About a month ago, my sugar cravings were in overdrive. All I wanted to eat was processed sugary treats. I mean, seriously, all I wanted was a frosted brownie all to myself every.single.day. And most days I gave in. And If I did, the more sugar I wanted to eat. It was like a never-ending cycle brought to you by Better Crocker. The desire for sugar was so intense, I was legitimately concerned for myself.
I think this is what most people would refer to as rock bottom.
That feeling was worse than any sugar crash, ever. I decided to be a grown-up and do something about it. I called my very bestie and fellow Plexus pal, Meagan up. (Which, BTW, she's been an ambassador for a year and is looking great and rocking her business.) M got me set-up with the Tri-Plex combo (the Plexus Slim, ProBio5, and the BIO Cleanse). And the rest is history!
So, WHY? Why Plexus? Why now?
I guess the better question is, Why NOT? I didn't have anything to lose except an extreme sugar addiction, a raging affinity for pop, and a constant battle with bloating.
So I decided I'd take the products and see where that led. It's been 3 weeks and it's led me to telling YOU about them. I am feeling better, I don't start my day off with a cold one (a Diet Pepsi!), and I am not sneaking candy at my desk at 10:30am or 2:30pm. Then, I realized that there was this incredible opportunity staring me in the face that I needed to pursue. Plus, I already joined as an Ambassador, to receive discounts on my products (#bargainhunter4life), so I was already positioned to pursue the actual business side of things. Doing so allows me to continue to harken the spirit of entrepreneurship carry forward a mission of health & happiness.
So WHY would I join a multilevel marketing company? Why would I want to put myself out there and share about these products daily? Why risk the eye rolls, the sighs, and the potential loss of acquaintances? Because:
*I don't have the bloating flare ups I've had for years now.
*I want to have financial flexibility.
*I want to pay off our student loans early.
*I want to be in a position to own other businesses with Nick.
*I want to make new, incredible friends and develop bonds with like-minded people.
*I want to give back! Meals, time, treasure, etc...
I am committing to doing my best with this endeavor for the next 12 months. I am eager to grow during this time and help inspire growth and health in others.
If you're interested about Plexus products, even remotely, give me holler. I'd love to share with you. If you're looking for an opportunity to contribute to your financial and personal wellness, let's chat.
PS I promise this won't be the focus of my blog. I won't be giving up baking or cooking. I still LOVE dessert. But now I working on being equipped to indulge in moderation.
Until next time--
Hey there. It's been a while. Like, an unacceptably long while. I could tell you that I've been reflecting/letting my new age marinate but let's get real. Life is full.
Freakin' full of mostly good stuff.
Since I've last posted I've legitimately launched my real estate business. I have a listing (yes, check out the home I got the privilege of taking on as my first listing! You might know someone for whom it would be the perfect fit...and if so, please refer them my way.) Plus, I have two buyers I'm currently working with. Albeit small, it's a start. Let's hope this is the beginning of a rocking' real estate career.
Anyway, I've have been 30 for more than a month now. Yep, I turned 3-0 on February 1st. Funny how time works though, because I am writing this post around the time my momma tells me shoulda been my due date. (5 weeks early folks, that's how I roll. I was supposed to be a Pisces. Looks like my proclivity to overachieve must have been developed in the womb.)
A lot of people have asked how I was handling giving up my twenties. And you know what, I was happy to kick them to the curb. I'd had them for 10 years after all (buh dum bump, haha!) But in all seriousness, I was pretty eager and open to my impending birthday. My twenties were predictably filled with milestones and unpredictably marked by awesome moments you couldn't even have dreamt up. Now, in the spirit of full disclosure, I did spend a little too much time in Sephora searching for anti-aging cream...but I think that's probably a rite of passage. (And, totally hit me up if you have any to die for rituals or products!)
Word on the street is your 30s are when all the good stuff happens. Maybe it's because at this point you've sloughed off most of your self-consciousness, loved and lost and loved again, built your tribe, fostered your passions, and grown into who you're supposed to be all along.
So what to do if you're nearing the big 3-0, or another big year? Well, in my humble opinion, I think you absolutely MUST:
5. Take an inventory of the good things in your life, all that you have to be grateful for, and the cool opportunities you have ahead.
4. Plan a trip during your birthday month (or within the year). It could be to anywhere-- near, far, or exotic, just get away for a while.
3. Throw yourself a kickin' party and invite as many of your crew as possible. Be sure to serve your favorites sips and sweets!
2. Wear an outfit that makes you feel comfortable, spectacular, gorgeous (insert your own adjective here).
1. Own it :: Rock it :: Be it
And to help soften the blow for my friends and readers who've not hit thirty yet (or those who are struggling with whatever age comes next), I've compiled some of the redeeming qualities your birthday brings.
PS For those of you in the Forever 29 camp, there are plenty of us who will enjoy 30 for you. But, consider joining us soon! You've earned it!
In case you're wondering how I ushered in my big birthday, I coordinated a fiesta at our home with some of our nearest and dearest (minus those who couldn't make it). We had a "It's NACHO birthday" bar and plenty of dessert and drinks. Here's the high level recap in photos. Thanks to everyone who came to celebrate with us! And, I so appreciate all the birthday love I received throughout the month. Y'all are the best!
Until next time!
This is a story. A story of love and carbs, and change.
I do carbs well (like A+ skill). I love love and do it pretty well. And change, that one, whew, not so much... but life it is a funny thing.
We moved to Wichita a little over two years ago for Nick's job. Starting our life here meant I left a job that I really liked. Looking back, I actually loved it. But, we made this move together. I agreed to our move without hesitation and excitement because I love Nick and I love us. And, because he got the offer many others in his field covet.
So, I got a new job in Wichita. We actually started our new jobs the same day. My experience at my new job in Wichita allowed me some great experiences planning big events, helping craft concentrated marketing efforts, connecting with some impressive people, and develop some good relationships. I had a good run in that position. But I started this blog because I wanted to share stories and honest reflections (and great food!). Accordingly, I have to be transparent. In this position, I struggled with my authenticity, the value I provided, my work-life balance, and, frankly, my happiness. Thus, I reached a tipping point and had to make a change. YES, I inserted change, BIG CHANGE, into my own life.
Switching jobs is scary. Leaving one that is stable, poised for possible growth, and reasonably compensated for one that is for lesser pay well that's enough to send a lifelong risk-manager into a tailspin. This is where the love comes in. Throughout my entire job search and interview process, Nick was the paramount cheerleader. He was my champion. He provided me the permission I thought I needed to walk away from something fine for something that could bring me new challenge and more peace. He did give me some tough love and a quasi-mandate to make a decision and not look back, either way no matter what I chose.
It came down to taking the risk. Or facing regret. I would have only stayed in my former position out of fear of the unknown. So I had some lengthy consultation with those I love the most and did some soul-searching. Then I went to sleep. Yes, I slept on it. Then I woke up and charged ahead on decision day resolved to take the leap. I found this quote that describes the feeling I had, "And suddenly you just know it's time to start something new and trust the magic of new beginnings."
In this journey, perhaps amplified by ever nearing end of my twenties, I've come to realize giving my energy and time to something that fulfills you is critical. Adding value to your life and the lives of others is awesome and necessary. Moreover, happiness is important. Happiness with self, work, and life. If something is standing in the way of happiness you have to move it or move you. New beginnings only happen if we make them happen.
I am happy to report that I think I'm going to love my new job. I get the opportunity to tell the stories of our community's school district. I get to showcase what's good about public education and the success of students and teachers. I also get to help foster opportunities for support. Other bonuses about this new job: Practically no more extra hours. Nick and I have about the same schedule. And it frees me up to take another leap, errrr, well perhaps tip toe into the world of real estate (more on this when there's more to report.) It's true that the newness hasn't worn off, but it's safe to say I made the right choice.
All this change makes me hungry. Carbs, shall we? Let's talk donuts. Better yet, pumpkin donuts.
with Cinnamon Cream Cheese Icing
Original Donut Recipe from King Arthur Flour
Makes 18 donuts
1/2 cup vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin (not pie filling)
1 1/2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
1 3/4 + 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. In large mixing bowl, mix all ingredients with hand or stand mixer until well blended.
3. Stir in flour until smooth.
4. Spoon batter into non-stick sprayed standard donut pan. Fill wells about 3/4 full.
5. Bake for 15-18 minutes. Let cool in pan for 2-3 minutes then move donuts out onto cooling rack.
While cooling, make icing, if desired.
1. Beat 5 tablespoons cream cheese, 3/4 cup powered sugar, 1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon, and 1 1/2 teaspoons light brown sugar with hand mixer. Adjust powdered sugar and use about 2-4 tablespoons of milk to create desired consistency. We like it a little more cream cheesy, a little less sweet, and a teeny bit thick but that's the beauty of it all, customize to your liking.
Note: I made the donuts the day before icing them. They were a bit sticky the next day. So I popped the donuts back into the oven at 350 for about 2-3 minutes and then dipped these babies into icing.
This treat. These are incredibly easy. And the pumpkin spice is like whoa. Enjoy them this fall (more than once if you can handle it.)
Before I sign off, I have to give a shout out to by husband and those who took this leap with me. THANK YOU for helping me pursue my own path and loving me through my crazy antics, my over analyzation, and my dreams.
If you're headed towards a crossroads or faced with any difficult decisions, trust your tribe, trust yourself, and take the risk. Read the quotes below as they were pulled from my Instagram feed and GO FOR IT!
Until next time.
6/28/2014 6 Comments
Unsurprising Confession: I really love cookies. The only other sweet I'd forego a cookie for is a brownie. But as of late, the Born household has been on a cookie kick.
Now, I must request a virtual ROUND OF APPLAUSE for Sally over at Sally's Baking Addiction for this kick butt recipe! It is undeniably one of the best cookie recipes I've ever made. (And this sweet tooth has made a lot of cookies over the last 28 years...)
What makes these cookies both addicting and awesome is their classic simplicity. My vegetable preferring husband is a sucker for soft cookies. He liked these Soft-Baked Monster Cookies so much requested I make these cookies two nights in a row.
These are perfect for any bake sale, picnic, family get together, or just an afternoon snack.
What these cookies aren't perfect for is bikini/swimsuit season. Seriously, you need willpower of a Saint to refuse one (er, three). Summer is in full swing and we're headed to Florida in a few weeks. This is when I should be eating greens, protein, and nothing enjoyable. But if you've been reading this blog, you know that I tend to prefer things that aren't going to keep me slim and trim. But as I grumble about what I look like (and maybe reach for another cookie at the same time) , I have to remind myself that I prefer to eat what I love and run a little more than regiment my diet. (For those who tell me that's not the way to think, I know this but I'm not looking to be a super model (I mean I'm 5'1.5" for goodness sakes!), just healthy.) I'm never going to be lean or cut because it's not something I value over being in the kitchen generating a form of love and a few calories.
But in the spirit of swimsuit season, let's quickly reflect on this wardrobe component that most women despise. And, then I'll share a few I'm coveting and/or considering. Then I promise I'll give you the goods on the cookies.
You might have seen this video on Facebook, but I wanted to share it here. I'm not sure what to think of Jessica Rey's call for modesty as means of empowerment. I am conflicted. On one hand, I think she's brilliant. I totally get not wanting to be seen as an "object". It repulses me to think that an article of clothing can slingshot our evolutionary advanced mind back to the more archaic times. But..
Here's my argument: a power suit is not about the amount of fabric and fit, but rather the mental and emotional feelings one has when wearing it. Power suit= self-confidence. To me, wearing any swimsuit at all and feeling like a rockstar in it is empowering. If that's a itsy bitsy bikini for some or a full-on one piece with a skirt, so be it. I will throw in the caveat that there are some swimsuits that are just not suited for all body types and generally you know when that's the case. And complete honesty, I am totally guilty of judging someone else for wearing something I don't think is flattering on them but that's my problem and my misstep. Seriously, who am I to judge what someone else feels best in?
All that said, here are a few swimsuits, in a variety of styles, I think are adorable for summer 2014:
I know after trying on swimsuits (virtually or in a store), I want a reward. Here's yours.
Soft-Baked Monster Cookies
Recipe source: Sally's Baking Addiction
1/2 cup (1 stick) salted butter, softened to room temperature
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup granulated sugar
3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
1 large egg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract (I prefer Mexican vanilla)
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1 and 1/4 cups all purpose flour
1/2 cup quick oats*
3/4 cup your favorite M&Ms
1/2 cup milk chocolate or semi-sweet chocolate chips
*I never have quick oats on hand, so I just put a little over a 1/2 cup of old fashioned oats in the food processor, pulsed for a few seconds, and viola!
Thanks for letting me ramble on today. I sincerely hope if you're on the hunt for a swimsuit this summer that you find one that makes you feel 100% beautiful and/or comfortable. If you do, celebrate with these cookies. If not, commiserate with these cookies. Either way this recipe is a homerun! Talk to you soon.
PS For the mommas out there debating whether to pass on the pool or splash with your kiddos, check out this article. It's a good read.