Thursday, January 28, 2010

Friday Wrap-up

Happy Friday! This week sure has been a quick one. Here's something cool I discovered this week, makeup artist and cosmetics concoctor Bobbi Brown is using her real-life friends for her new ad campaign. Don't they look gorgeous? Also, ABC News picked up on some important info that many a veg-head already knows: happy cows do not live on dairy farms. Check out the report here: *Note, it's not pretty.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Not So Lazy Sunday

Today's more of a hit the ground running Sunday. No time to post, but a photo for good measure.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Golden Globes II

Photo via ecorazzi

I missed this gorgeous - not to mention green - dress from this year's Golden Globes on the first go-round. Here's Livia Giuggioli, wife of actor Colin Firth, wearing her own re-purposed wedding dress! What a great way to wear this stunning piece a second time. Who says a dress so special should only be worn once? When it's this beautiful, I say wear it for a few worthy occasions... and then pass it along to someone else who will truly cherish it just as much (that doesn't mean keeping it in storage until you have the chance to torture your daughter with the guilt of expecting her to wear it).

Photo via ecorazzi

Monday, January 18, 2010

Golden Globes

Did you watch the Golden Globes last night? I only made it through about half of the pre-show on E! Yes, I admit, I watch awards shows solely for the dresses and to see who's had a bad lift or a botched tuck since last year. Initially, I was hopeful for many sparkly frock photos to post this evening, but I was pretty disappointed in the show of fashion this go-round. No doubt there were many beautiful faces and sculpted bodies to be seen, but the outfit choices didn't send me into an excited frenzy. The fabulous Jane Lynch (from Glee) was definitely one of my favorites in this classically cut olive green number, though.

Elegant and timeless. What was your favorite look from the evening? Did your favorite show come away a winner?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

January 14

Today was...

an early to work... trip to the gym....

Greek salad... 2 loads of laundry...

slow game of upwords.... brand new 30 Rock

kind of day

Monday, January 11, 2010

Blogs Worth Browsing

Photo via MSNBC

Every once in a while I like to spend an hour or two scoping out new blogs to add into my usual rotation of daily reads. Here are a few I discovered this past weekend you just might want to check out yourself...

Beautiful and fun collections of themed photo inspiration. From designer do-dads to neon nail polish to swanky swizzle-sticks, Mrs. Lilien has it all... and she makes it look so good!

Perfect for: Women who'd still like to play dress up
I love Ms. Peaches and Cream
Also good for: Discovering gift ideas for your chic friends
How cool are these glasses?

Marisa decided to make it an entire year without doing any traditional clothing shopping. She's spending only $365 for 365 days and creating 365 outfits out of thrifted goodies... and they are so cute! You have to see the blog to believe it.

Perfect for: Salvation Army regulars and do-it-yourselfers
Have you ever dyed clothing?
Also good for: Anyone trying to make their mom's old clothes cool again
Perfect example

Sophie Blackall paints renditions of the missed connections section of Craigslist (where people write about brief encounters they had with strangers they'd like to meet again). I originally found out about Sophie and the blog Missed Connections on another blog I adore, Cup of Joe.

Perfect for: Believers in the interconnectedness of us all
This one's so sweet
Also good for: Anybody who needs a good laugh at life

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Lazy Sunday: Sushi Adventures

Photo found on The Perfect Pantry

This lazy Sunday I decided to make sushi. No, the photo above is not my final product. Think more smooshed, less taut, nix the garnish, and more messy all-over. That was my final product. It had nothing on my favorite Denver tofu rolls or the best Boston Portabella rolls, but every once in a while it's more fun to make a mess and try things yourself... just buy a good dessert in case the exotic entree doesn't quite make the cut. Thankfully Whole Foods has added yet another vegan dessert to their bakery line-up: lemon poppy-seed cake!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Health Tip: Slow Down

Health tip for the day: Slow Down. That's right, slowing down may seem like a nice way to relax, but it may also be one of the best things you can do for your body and mind.

When we slow down, physically, our breath becomes slow and deep - filling our lungs more fully, bringing more oxygen to our brain and muscles. Our muscles relax and our body's positioning becomes less rigid and tense. In a very primitive way, we are telling our biological selves it is alright to be at ease. Our stress levels drop.

When we slow down, we no longer make choices hastily, or out of impulse. We weigh our options, and we are more likely to make smart, not risky, decisions.

When we slow down, we drive slower. We use less gas. Our air becomes cleaner, and the whole world can breathe (slower) easier.

When we slow down, we eat slower too. We chew more, which aids in digestion and helps us to make use of all the nutritional benefits of our food. As we give our bodies time to sense when our nutritional needs have been met, we are less likely to overeat.

When we slow down, our movements are controlled and deliberate. We do not strain our muscles, tendons, bones or otherwise. Our pace helps keep our body's natural alignment.

When we slow down, we allow our physical and mental capacities to take a break. Our bodies can begin to restore from the stresses of our day. We return to our natural rhythms, and are more in tune with our body's needs. Sleep comes easier, deeper, and longer.

When we slow down, we find the time to develop stronger relationships. We can dedicate more attention to those we are with, and we are more likely to share our authentic self with them.

When we slow down, we are given the chance to rediscover who our authentic self is. When we slow down, we give ourselves the time to live authentically too. We feel more fulfilled, and our happiness grows.

Go ahead. Slow down. It's good for your health.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

In a Funk

Photo found here.

I had the best intentions of finishing a post this evening about easy ways to integrate healthy habits into your life for optimal post-holiday health... and somewhere along the way I wound up in a no-good-very-bad mood instead. I don't know what set-off my pathetic evening slump, but it involved moping on the sofa, eating handfuls of high-fructose-laden store brand sugar cookies of the most evil variety, watching reruns of The Office I have seen at least twice before. Embarrassing? Incredibly. While I enjoy writing about health, am generally optimistic, and hate the thought of wasting a perfectly good evening to be an unhappy hermit (I was going to make soup!), none of us are immune to a sudden pang of frustration, self-pity, or hormones that leave us in a wilted heap for the remainder of the day.

So here's my question to you: How do you snap yourself out of a funk?

Do you have a good long sleep, or do you stay up all night watching scary movies? Do you hit the gym, or maybe take a day off instead? Read a trashy magazine, or dive into a literary classic? Ask for a hug, or need some time alone? Spend some time outdoors, or relish in the hours inside? Need to feel comfortable and relaxed, or seek to feel excitement and adrenaline?

Whatever helps you dislodge yourself from the melodramatic depths of despair, jump to it as soon as you can to prevent a bad day from snowballing into a bad week. As for me, tomorrow promises to be a busy day, and nothing helps me get out of a bad mood better than getting things done. With each task I cross off a to-do list, I sense my self-purpose and motivation multiply. But until you're ready to take some steps towards feeling positive again, don't stress about those bad days that come around every once and a while. It happens to us all.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Healthy Nose, Healthy Head

Photo found here.

Thanks to the cold weather outside, the warm, dry air inside, and the frequent nose-blowing associated with both, our nostrils really take a beating this time of year. Hopefully you have been fortunate enough to avoid a seasonal cold or allergy-bout, but the many different "bugs" working their way through our offices and schools can leave your sinuses in need of some major TLC. Enter, the Neti Pot.

What's a Neti Pot?

A traditional Neti Pot looks like a small ceramic tea pot with an extra long spout, and is used to pour a lukewarm water and saline solution up one nostril and out the other. The concept may sound bizarre and new-agey, but the Neti Pot has been around since ancient times and has been long considered a practice of yogic tradition. So how does one use a Neti Pot? And more importantly, why?

Let's start with why you might use a Neti Pot. Using a gentle saline and water solution to clean your nasal passages clears out all the gunk that blowing your nose can't. It can help alleviate sinus pressure, sooth irritated skin inside your nose, and enable you to breath easier.

As for how to use a Neti Pot, it takes a little bit of trial and error to get your own personal technique mastered. The video below is a great resource for getting started. If you've never heard of a Neti Pot before or seen somebody use one, it may seem a little scary. However, if you relax and take your time with it, I think you will find the process to be painless and well worth the effort.

A few tips for first time Neti-Potters:

Test the temperature of the water carefully, and always err on the side of caution. You do not want it to be too hot! I find room temperature water or just slightly warmer works most comfortably for me.

Be sure to lean your head forwards when you begin pouring the water. If you don't lean forward, you run the risk of the solution coming down the back of your throat and leaving you with a salty taste in your mouth.

This may seem obvious, but you'll want to position yourself and your Neti Pot over a sink, outside, or for those advanced Potters... in the shower. All that water going in will be coming out!

Take the time to clean your Neti Pot and keep it sanitary. I chose a ceramic pot that can be washed in the dishwasher.

If the Neti Pot seems a little too daunting, there are alternative products on the market that provide the same service. The NeilMed bottle, for example, can be used without tipping one's head to the side (you simply lean forward and squeeze the sides of the plastic bottle to push the water through the nasal passages), which may be easier for some.

Additional Resources

Since I started using a Neti Pot, I feel my head is much clearer and it's like I have a little secret weapon when I start to get sniffly. I love that it's a safe and easy to use product, and has been time-tested. But don't just take my word for it. Here are some additional resources to check out:

Also, I'm no expert. If you have any concerns or questions about whether or not a Neti Pot would work well for you, consider seeing your doctor, wellness expert, or healer of choice first.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Lazy Sunday: Noodle Time

Lazy Sunday: Noodle Time

I hope you had a great, long weekend, and enjoyed this lazy Sunday just a little bit more as a result. Tonight I joined a friend for dinner at my favorite Vietnamese restaurant where I had my absolute favorite meal - vermicelli noodle bowl! Warm rice noodles coupled with fresh julienne carrots and cucumber, shredded lettuce, and bean sprouts, topped with scallions, crispy tofu, and crushed peanuts. To me, the perfect combination of textures and flavors... plus it's a satisfying dish that won't leave you feeling weighed down and tired.

For many, it's back to work tomorrow morning to begin the first full week in quite a while. Getting back into the swing of things is always more challenging after the holidays, not to mention we are in the midst of the sickness season. That's why this week I will be writing about staying healthy and feeling great during the (often trying) winter months. See you there!

Friday, January 1, 2010


Photo via Pistol Pete

Welcome to 2010! With any luck you are through nursing the post-celebratory hangover and have already written the date incorrectly once or twice. If you didn't have time to reflect on the past year before the ball dropped, not to worry. This weekend is just as good a time to do a quick recap of what made the last year great (or what made you happy to bid it adieu) and dream up what you like to do more of in the months to come.

Here is what I have decided I need more of in 2010...

Homemade Meals
Dark Chocolate :)

And what I need less of...

Checking Email