Category Archives: Fun Stuff

Why cookie-cutter meal plans don’t work (and how to make your own)

Meal-PlanWritten by my brilliant dear friend, Laura Curiale.

You’re on the internet: Facebooking , Instagramming, looking up recipes and meal ideas.

You have a busy life and you want to be healthy.

Then you see it.

A beautiful, blue, clickable link promising you balanced daily meals and shopping lists to match.

This is amazing! You think… and so you pay the $9.99 for one week, the $17.99 for two, or maybe even the $40 for the month.

Sound familiar?

Well, join me in the “I wish I had bought that dress instead of this meal plan” club, sistah!

Week 1 goes off without a hitch.

The shopping is easy, the meals are ok, I’m thinking – I’ve totally got this!

Week 2 is OK.

Similar meals to the first week.

I know I’m definitely grabbing a takeout pizza because let’s face it, for me, a week without one of my favourite foods is not a good week.

Now I arrive at week 3 and I’m dying of boredom.

Who wrote this meal plan? Why do they not like flavours? Why am I listening to someone who doesn’t know me or my likes or my lifestyle?

There’s only so many days in a row I can eat boneless, skinless chicken with steamed veggies and brown rice.

And just like that, I hop off the bandwagon and am back at square one.

It took a few rounds of this before I came to the conclusion that these cookie-cutter meal plans aren’t for me.

And it’s not because I’m bad at following directions (I even have the Kindergarten report cards to prove it).

It’s that eating became a chore.

And that’s not right because I love food! 

I was a disciple of Mr. Quaker Oats oatmeal for the majority of my life. What could be better? Individually-wrapped flavour-packed oats that were ready in the blink of an eye (or a boil of water). But this too got boring, and thinking of eating chemical flavours every day kind of got to me.

Here’s how I made a meal plan that sticks.

I started to really think about what gets me going about food and how I can incorporate my favourites into my lifestyle.

What’s an oatmeal-lover have to do to get her morning oat craving?

Having recently been introduced to overnight oats, I went back to the internet and found oh, about a gazillion different variations.

The best part? You can make these suckers the night before! Sunday night overnight oat-making means I have breakfast ready and waiting for me for the next 4 days at least.

Simple, healthy, fast, and cheap and way healthier than chemical-filled Quaker Oats.

Now you may not be as oats-crazy as this girl, but the point I’m trying to make is…

You can make amazing, delicious and healthy meals that suit your tastes and your lifestyle by planning properly.

Not sure where to start?

That’s where Make Love in the Kitchen comes in.

This 6 week online program walks you through the steps of creating a plan so that you always know what to eat for breakfast, lunch, dinner and snacks.

You plan your outfits, your vacation time and your Friday nights- isn’t it time you make a plan in the kitchen that will stick?

Click here to get started.

awesome-program-for-meal-planning

so true, i never stick to a meal plan someone else has made. love the idea of creating my own

amazing-program-that-gets-you-organized-and-keeps-you-accountable-to-strategize-and-plan-your-meals

How to add moon phases to Google Calendar

Confession time: I still have all my agendas from high school in a box my attic.

I don’t know about you, but throughout high school, my agenda was one of my favourite things.

Back then, I took great pride in covering the pages with:

  • Hard copy pictures of my friends (remember life before the iPhone when we had to go to a store and print our pictures?).
  • Magazine clippings (mostly of boy bands (BSB 4Life) and positive words- DREAM! LIVE, LAUGH, LOVE!)
  • People’s birthdays (no Facebook reminders back then…)
  • Inspiring quotes
  • Pics of my pet bunny
my agenda

my cute little bunny thumper, words to live by, Backstreet Boys 4eva

Of course, I also used it to keep track of homework and activities. And not much has changed today. I still live by my agenda.

A particularly useful tool for me is Google Calendar- it keeps track of my Health Chats with clients for the day and any other activities going on.

To make my online calendar feel more “like me”, I discovered how to add moon phases to Google Calendar.

Watch the video below to learn how:

Admittedly, I am mentally preparing myself to get rid of my agendas (decluttering is after all 1 of 4 Steps that I outline in the Food Rhythm Program).

Until then, I will continue to start my days looking at my Google Calendar and observe what moon phase we are in. This process grounds me.

If you want to learn more about how to use the moon phases as a check-in point for your health & wellness, check out Food Rhythm.

One recent participant told me that Food Rhythm “changed her life”.

What comes to mind when I hear something like this, are lyrics that I’m sure I had scribbled out in my old agenda from my favourite boy band, the Backstreet Boys, where I think, “I Want It That Way” for you too.

Click here to join Food Rhythm.

Food Rhythm MemberPress

moon phase pin

How To Cultivate Bliss (no thoughtful man required)

how-to-cultivate-bliss

Yesterday morning at a local cafe, my friend Paula and I witnessed something that would change the life of two people forever.

The man at the table next to us got down on one knee and proposed to his girlfriend (via a crossword puzzle that he created, submitted to the paper, and they filled out together- holy mind-blowing, right?). And just wait until I tell you about the unconventional ring…

Both Paula and I teared up immediately (teared up = holding back uncontrollable sobs of joy).

The energy was just so pure. You could feel the love (just like this Mowgli’s song).

Paula and I exchanged a glance wondering, “should we be ignoring them and let them enjoy this incredible moment together?”. But it was clear that they were receptive to sharing the good news with the people around them. Their energy elated me.

Which got me thinking- how freaking cool would it be if I can I maintain feeling this bliss every single day? Is it even possible?

The answer came to me immediately. Yes.

But since we can’t witness a heartfelt proposal every single day, it seems like the best way to cultivate this bliss is from within (cue corny music here, I know, I know…)

Here’s a list of a few things I came up with:

  •  Show Gratitude (start your day by writing down 10 things you are grateful for)
  • Meditate (check youtube for guided meditations)
  • Moving Your Body (walk, pilates, yoga, TRX, bike, hike, shake what your mama gave you (aka dance in your living room)).
  • Be in Nature (trees, birds, fresh air- oh my!)
  • Prepare yourself a nourishing meal (real food for the win!)
  • Disconnecting from your phone/computer/electronic device of choice (gives you time to do all of the above)

Common theme- all these things come from you.

No relying on anything or anyone (except for Mother Nature, but you came from her, so that’s cool).

And if you’re thinking “well I don’t have time to do this stuff”…

Choose just one, and do it for 2 minutes for the next 5 days.

It’s a definite start.

Back to our happy couple, the ring was absolutely breathtaking- it was a rough diamond, in the shape of heart. The girl said “I have a thing for heart-shape rocks”. Well call me corny, but oh lordy, pass over the tissues!

What’s something you can do today to cultivate bliss within you?

Let me know in the comments.

how to cultivate bliss

Superfood Frappuccino

Superfood-Frappuccino

Growing up, there was a Second Cup Coffee right around the corner from my high school.

I loved going there to order a Chillate- I mean just the name sounds totally cool, right?

(Interestingly they have renamed this “cool-sounding” drink to Frappe, very similar to Starbucks Frappucinno).

All this to say, whipped up coffee-chocolately drinks have been a part of my life for a long time… but…

Now I make my own deliciously cool drinks.

Here’s why. Take a look at Starbucks Mocha Frappuccino Ingredients:

Water, Milk, Coffee flavored Frappuccino Syrup (Sugar, Water, Salt, Natural and Artificial Flavor (ugh why?), Xantham Gum, Potassium Sorbate (preservative), Citric Acid, Caramel Color (fake color= my pet peeve)), Sweetened whip cream (Heavy cream, vanilla flavored syrup (Sugar, Water, Natural Flavor, Potassium Sorbate, Citric Acid, Caramel Color (stop with the color!)), Hydrated coffee (water, Frappuccino roast soluble coffee), hydrated mocha powder (Water, Sugar, Cocoa, artificial flavour (again)).

Why is there so much artificial flavours and colours when we can get this taste from actual Real Food?!

(This is kind of a rhetorical question- I’m sure the answer has to do with money $$- it’s probably cheaper to use fake stuff…)

But the good news is…

We have the capability to replicate these Franken-food drinks with Real Food!

Real Food for the win!

Superfood Frappuccino 1

Basic Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup brewed coffee (however you like it- medium roast, decaf, organic, fair trade, etc…) Pro tip- brew extra coffee and store it in the fridge to use later in the week.
  • 1/2 cup thick liquid (cream, milk, almond milk, etc…)
  • 1 tsp pure vanilla (what I use)
  • Pure maple syrup (to taste- depending on how sweet you want it)
  • Handful of ice

Superfood ingredients:
these are not necessary to add, but if you want to pack in the nutrition, then go ahead!

Place all ingredients in a blender and blend. That’s it. Easy Peasy.

Wishing you lots of nourishing frappuccinos over the course of this summer!

Applying for MasterChef Canada

MasterChefApplication

Last night as I clicked the ‘Submit’ button on the application for MasterChef Canada, I felt some butterflies in my stomach.

Why this feeling of excitement?

It would be so damn awesome to have a wide reach to inspire people to approach cooking with a positive attitude & infusing their food with LOVE.

As I was filling out the application and asking my husband for some input, he turned to me and asked out of genuine curiosity, “why are you even applying?”.

Simply- because I care.

I care about people’s health and wellbeing, and I truly believe that food is the vehicle to abundant health.

I would love to be able to get this discussion on a broader platform and this seems like a great way to do so.

So here’s where you come in.

Can you help a sista out?

I’d so appreciate you enhancing my application by clicking the link below and tweeting at MasterChef Canada!

(or creating your own creative Tweet- perhaps how Food Savvy has helped you be inspired in the kitchen?)

There was some part of me that was doubting if it was a good idea to apply to this show…

But then I figured, you know what, I’ve got nothing to lose and I totally have what it takes!

So why not, right?

Wish me luck 😉