Weekly Menu Plan–May 20, 2012

Phew, what a week!  I am DONE with studying and can relax and enjoy the upcoming summer with the kids!  I am excited to focus on writing, hanging at the pool, baking and practicing my new personal trainer techniques on some guinea pig friends.  This past week included this:


and a little too much of this:


Now it is time to detox and breathe. 

Sunday – Rotisserie chicken, baked potatoes, broccoli and salad

Monday – Bison burgers, sweet potato puffs and salad

Tuesday – Easy enchilada bake, corn and salad

Wednesday – Taking mother-in-law out for her birthday dinner

Thursday – Lasagna and salad

Friday – Make your own pizza and salad

Saturday – BBQ grilled chicken, coconut baked brown rice, roasted asparagus and salad

Did you win the Michelob Light Giveaway

Enter to win Kinnikinnick’s summer grilling giveaway!

Panda House at Polaris is my new love!

Larabar introduces new flavors for summer

Review: Bella Monica gluten-free pizza

Jules Gluten Free introduces a unique new cake mix

Review: Cape Cod feta & rosemary chips

Rudi’s gluten-free tortillas – you must check these out!

Are you on Pinterest?  If so, make sure to follow me!

Kinnikinnick Summer Grilling Giveaway

With grilling season ramping up, what better way to get ready than with a giveaway?  Kinnikinnick has generously offered to give one lucky winner a kit with their new soft buns and soft bread.  I had the opportunity to sample the new products earlier this year and loved them!

The buns are perfect for burgers, hot dogs, brats or grilled chicken.   They come in packs of 4 and are priced at $4.59/package.  To see where you can find the new soft bread and buns close to you, click here.  The bread is also available through the Kinnikinnick website and shipping rates are a flat $10.00.

Now for the fun part – the winner will receive a package that includes 1 Soft White, 1 Soft Multigrain, 1 Soft Hot Dog Buns, and 1 Soft Hamburger Buns.  All you have to do enter is follow the instructions in the Rafflecopter box below.  Continue reading

NASM CPT 4 Exam–Did I Pass?

I decided earlier this year to study for my personal training certification through the NASM (National Academy of Sports Medicine).  Putting it out there for the world to know made even more pressure for me to work hard and pass the test the first time around.  There was so much information and I had no idea it would be this hard to study.  Part of this may be due to the fact that I have a busy life and am 20 years older than the last time I had to really study for anything.  Additionally, I was pretty much on my own with this course.  I had to be self-disciplined and make sure I was putting in the time to learn what I was required to learn. 

I had 180 days from the time I purchased the course to take the exam.  I scheduled my exam for earlier this morning even though I had until the end of June.  I didn’t want to have to worry about trying to study once the kids got out of school for the summer.  I was super-stressed for the past couple of weeks, but I am thrilled to tell you that I PASSED!!!  I can’t tell you how relieved I am!!  That was one of the toughest tests I have ever taken in my life.  I felt like I knew the information well, but there was no shortage of trick questions on the exam.  When the proctor told me that I had passed the exam, I pretty much yelled “OH, Thank God!”  I quickly apologized for being loud and he said he gets all kinds of interesting responses once he informs the exam takers of their results.  I can only imagine.  I will receive my official certification in the next few weeks, but he gave me a temporary print out with theses important words “Congratulations!!  You have passed the Certified Personal Trainer examination.”



I am excited that I can relax and enjoy the summer with my kids now!!

Don’t forget today is the last day to enter my Michelob ULTRA Light Cider Giveaway!

Mama Got A Brand New Pair of Shoes

Actually, I got a brand new pair of flip flops.  With summer just around the corner and my favorite sandals – Merrell’s – just over two years old, I thought it was high time to invest in some flip flops that wouldn’t have my sports medicine doctor’s hard work on my feet going down the drain.  I wear Superfeet Inserts in my running shoes and it just so happens that they make a flip flop/sandal.  I will admit that when these first came out last year, I didn’t bite because they aren’t cheap.  However, I like to wear flip flops and one pair of sandals for summer doesn’t cut it.


Before I share my thoughts on the flip flops, check out the information from Superfeet below:

Now you can head to the beach or just enjoy summer in your Superfeet! Our new FLP Sandal offers the same comfort and support you expect from your premium insoles. The women’s Superfeet FLP is equipped with an authentic built-in orthotic to cradle your natural footstep and provide maximum ground contact, resulting in a confident feeling of balance and control.

Its podiatrist-designed internal core offers proper biomechanical support combined with advanced shock absorption and torsional rigidity. The forefoot flex groove ensures precision gait function and the 4-way stretch strap technology helps hug the foot and reduce hot spots.


You have nothing to lose but your sore feet. If you are not satisfied with your new sandals, return them within 30 days to your place of purchase for a credit or refund.

I am loving my new flip flops!  I do have to get used to the thingy between my toe, as I haven’t worn flip flops in a long time, but I love the supportive feeling I get when I slip these on!  My feet feel so free, yet I am not worried about irritating my feet by wearing unsupportive footwear this summer.


Seems Mama also needs a tan and a pedicure.

I searched the FAQ to see if there was info on plantar fasciitis and breaking in the sandals and found this:

Do the Superfeet FLP sandals help with plantar fasciitis?

In most cases, our Premium Sandals can help with plantar fasciitis. The Superfeet FLPs have a deep heel cup and incorporate our Encapsulating Stabilizer System [ESS®] with a built-in orthotic to help keep the rear foot close to a neutral position for better bone and muscle alignment. The combination of the integrated orthotic, sophisticated stabilizing and shock absorbing system and our anatomically designed shank in the outsole supports and aligns your foot to take stress off the plantar fascia ligament.

Is there a break-in period with the Superfeet FLP sandal?

Yes! Just like our Premium Insoles, we recommend you take a conservative approach to wearing your supportive FLP sandals for the first time. The tendons and muscles of your feet may need time to adjust to their properly supported position.

Superfeet FLP Sandals can be found in Columbus at Fleet Feet on Polaris Parkway or online from a number of sources.  They only come in whole sizes.  I wear a 9.5 running shoe and got a women’s size 9 Superfeet FLP Sandal.  If black/dusty rose isn’t your color, they do come in latte for women and charcoal or espresso for men.   The retail price is $90.00, which is comparable with other higher end supportive footwear, like Merrell sandals.


Don’t forget today is the last day to enter my Michelob ULTRA Light Cider Giveaway!

Michelob ULTRA Light Cider Review & Giveaway

Are you ready for summer?  I know I am!  I am ready to hang by the pool and relax.  What better way to relax than with an ice cold drink?  I think I have just found the perfect drink for summer – Michelob ULTRA Light Cider!  When I was asked if I was interested in reviewing the new cider, I jumped at the opportunity!  I love hard ciders and will often choose them over wine in the summer.


More about the new cider:

ST. LOUIS (May 7, 2012) – Anheuser-Busch’s Michelob ULTRA today announced the newest addition to its portfolio, Michelob ULTRA Light Cider, a naturally sweetened and gluten-free cider made from crisp apples. Featuring one-third fewer calories (120) and a more mellowed sweetness than traditional ciders*, Michelob ULTRA Light Cider is ideal for year-round enjoyment and provides adult drinkers a light, refreshing alternative to white wine, champagne and heavier ciders.

“As more people continue to discover cider, we’ve found that many view traditional ciders as either too heavy, too sweet or both,” said Ryan Moore, vice president of premium lights, Anheuser-Busch. “This perception has often times limited ciders to a seasonal beverage during fall and winter, but we saw an untapped potential to expand the category as a year-round option for adult drinkers. Michelob ULTRA Light Cider fills this void with a lower calorie cider with a milder, but distinct, sweetness that can be enjoyed straight or over ice.”

Michelob ULTRA Light cider will be available nationwide (excluding CO, UT, WY and OK) beginning May 7, 2012, and will be available in six-packs of 12-ounce clear glass bottles.

Michelob ULTRA Light Cider is the first cider from Anheuser-Busch to be produced and distributed in the U.S., and is produced at Anheuser-Busch’s Baldwinsville, New York, brewery. For more information, visit www.MichelobULTRA.com or www.Facebook.com/MichelobULTRA (must be 21 years of age).

To help celebrate the new launch, Michelob ULTRA has generously sent me a complimentary picnic kit and offered to give one away to a lucky reader, too!

To help launch Light Cider, they have put together a picnic (or BBQ, or summer concert) kit of must-have items to turn an outdoor gathering into an ULTRA experience. This kit includes Light Cider samples, snacks, and an array of items from the Crate & Barrel® seasonal collection like a Table In A Bag, picnic blanket, napkins and an insulated tote.

Before I get to the details of the giveaway, I want to share my thoughts on the cider.  I loved this light cider!  I don’t know if I can accurately describe how it tastes, but I’ll try.  Michelob ULTRA Light Cider was one of the lightest, most flavorful, refreshing drinks I have had in a long time.  It wasn’t overly sweet – it seemed to have just the right amount of sweetness blended with crispness.  I drank one with my grilled chicken salad the other night and it was the perfect compliment to the light meal.

The Table in a Bag, blanket, napkins & tote are very cool!  I can’t wait to use them all when we head to the beach later this summer!  Now for the fun part!  To enter to win your very own picnic kit, follow the directions below in the Rafflecopter box (you must have javascript enabled to view and enter).

Continue reading

Weekly Menu Plan–May 14, 2012

Four more days!!  I take my NASM CPT exam on Thursday and all of the craziness will hopefully cease to exist.  If I pass, I will celebrate.  If I fail, I’ll cry and register to retake my exam at the end of June.  I know that I am doing the best that I can and I pray that it is enough.  It is so hard to learn how to study again after not doing it for 20 years.  Plus, I am realizing that I don’t retain information like I used to. 

We had a wonderful time with family over the weekend and I think this picture just about sums it all up:


Never stop living life. 

Fortunately we have lots of leftovers from our family Mother’s Day celebration on Saturday, so I hope that holds us over for a couple of days.  Dinner with an old friend on Wednesday night and then hopefully I can focus on just being. 

Monday – Grilled chicken (leftover) salads or pasta. 

Tuesday – Mexican Pizzas with corn and salad

Wednesday – Dinner out

Thursday – Breakfast for dinner and fruit salad

Friday – Make your own pizza and salad

Saturday – Out with friends

Week in Review:

Don’t forget to enter to win the Rudi’s Gluten-Free giveaway!  Today is the last day!!

Some of my new favorite cookies: Baba Joon’s Chocolate Chewies

If you haven’t tried this bread you are missing out: Schar Deli Style Bread

Domino’s weak attempt at serving the gluten-free community

Chuck E. Cheese’s does gluten-free right – testing in select locations

Mia Cucina serves up great gluten-free pasta

What do you have planned for the week?

Review: Sebamed Body Lotion & Face Wash

I had the wonderful opportunity to sample and review some great skincare products from Sebamed.  Even though I am close to 40, I still seem to have some problems with breakouts on occasion.  Seems unfair to have wrinkles and pimples at the same time, right?  I was excited to try these new products to see how my skin reacted. 

Paraben-free Liquid Face and Body Wash 400mL high res jpeg                                        Paraben-free Moisturizing Body Lotion high res

First more about Sebamed:

Since the 1960s, Sebamed has been a pioneer in ultra mild soap-free cleansing and skin care products, which match the acidity of the skin’s hydrolipid barrier with pH 5.5 to naturally allow barrier recovery.

Healthy skin has an intact protective barrier which defends against environmental irritants and guards against dehydration. In fact, the surface of the skin is covered with a hydrolipid film called the acid mantle which is slightly acidic (pH 5.5). The acid mantle is essential for supporting the barrier functions of the outermost layer of the skin – the Stratum corneum.

Disruptions in the skin’s barrier function can lead to sensitive and dry skin. The skin then becomes susceptible to outside (allergens, irritants, weather, infection) and internal (stress, hormones, diseases) factors which can trigger skin inflammation. Moisture is lost through unprotected cracks in the outermost layer of the skin and the skin is also more prone to infections.

Sebamed soap-free clinical skin care products have been developed to simplify the skin care regimen of the most sensitive of skins by supporting your skin’s natural healing ability and maintaining an ideal pH level of 5.5. Sebamed products work to not only heal, but protect your skin from harmful environmental ailments. Help your skin, Heal itself.

The Sebamed liquid face and body wash had such a nice subtle scent and feeling while washing my face with it.  I honestly didn’t want to rinse it off!  I have been using the face wash for several weeks now and have noticed an improvement in the tone and color of my skin.  My skin seems to have a more even color to it. I love that I don’t even seem to need a moisturizer now, though I do put one on with SPF if I will be heading outside at all.  The face wash is soap-free and paraben-free in addition to gluten-free.  6.8 oz. for $12.95.

The Sebamed body lotion feels so luxurious! It goes on silky smooth and doesn’t leave a greasy residue behind.  My arms and legs are still smooth 24 hours later, which is an oddity for me, as I tend to have dry skin.  I have also noticed an improvement in the skin on my hands, which always seems to be dry and cracking.  Gluten-free and paraben-free.  6.8 oz for $14.95.

While it is important for those with Celiac Disease to avoid skin care products with gluten, those with Dermatitis Herpetiformis can actually break out into a horrible rash/blisters if they use skin care products with gluten. 

Sebamed products can be found in 7500+ stores including Costco, CVS, Walgreens and online at Amazon.com.

**These products were sent to me free of charge for review purposes.  The opinions shared here are mine and have not been influenced by anyone or anything.