New look

I have been blogging for a year and half now and felt the need for a fresh look.

This is my first go round at it and I would LOVE to hear your feedback! Is it too simple? I did this one myself, while the previous look I paid for. I am no professional so it will NOT hurt my feelings if you have constructive feedback. Trust me!

Hope everyone is enjoying the weekend so far! I will be back in blogging action next week.

Turkey For Me, Turkey For You

Do I have The Thanksgiving Song by Adam Sandler in your head yet?!

I had the pleasure of eating at MOOYAH the other day with MK. He had raved about that place for awhile, but I had not been yet. When I heard they had turkey burgers and black bean veggie burgers, I wanted to give it a whirl.

MOOYAH Turkey Burger

Okay, turkey.. you are delicious! I ordered the turkey burger and was impressed. It was huge so could have provided two meals for me if I would have packed up the other half too. Oh and MK and I definitely split some fries. It was a burger and fry kinda night!

The turkey used at MOOYAH is from Jennie-O so of course I have been trying out Jennie-O turkey lately at home. I made a Taco Soup yesterday, Turkey Taco Lettuce Wraps a couple weeks ago, and a simple spaghetti with meat sauce. I love that I can easily replace beef in various recipes and not alter the taste. Turkey tastes just as good! Now don’t get me wrong, I still like my beef too every so often but it is good to mix things up.

I feel it also appropriate to mention that MK and I have been talking a lot lately about vegetarianism. WHOA, where did that come from? I know, how can I talk about turkey and then hit ya with one of these wowzas? But, seriously, I think it is ALWAYS important to be authentic and while I do like the taste of meat and am still an omnivore, I often wonder if I should be a vegetarian. Maybe some of you are going through the same thoughts… we can help each otha out!

I have mentioned on the blog before (or think I have) about having this moral dilemma going on in my mind about eating meat versus not eating meat. I love animals so why do I eat them? People have eaten meat since the beginning of time so it is okay for me to as well, right? These are the two conflicting thoughts I often have. This is a very personal decision and one that should not be taken lightly. One does not become a vegetarian overnight or for silly reasons like “jumping on the next diet bandwagon”. I do not think everyone has to be vegetarian just like I don’t think everyone has to eat a diet high in meat and protein. I honestly believe that your journey is up to you. Mine is up to me. That is what is SO great about the world we live in. We have choices and we get to be CEO of our body and what goes in it. So, while I am not a vegetarian currently, one day I may be consuming the black bean burger at MOOYAH instead of the turkey burger.

And on that note, I would love to hear from you. What is your favorite turkey recipe? And have you ever thought about going vegetarian? Eat well, friends!

A new favorite: pHenOH

My New Favorite Sports Drink!

I was given a box of pHenOH to try through Sweatpink and let me just tell you, I was shocked! I am not a huge fan of sports drinks by nature. Never got on the gatorade bandwagon. (Sorry, gator!) But pHenOH has been a game changer for me lately.

Not but a couple of weeks ago I was talking with my brother’s girlfriend about Aloe vera. She puts it into her morning smoothies. I got interested and wanted to get some, but was on the lazy train a bit with that. Then, literally a few days later, I get a notice about trying out pHenOH which contains aloe vera. Score! I was so pumped to try this out. If you don’t already know, aloe vera has some health benefits, especially in regards to digestive health.

What is pHenOH? It is the first alkaline sports beverage specifically designed to match the ideal pH of your body. Only 7 simple ingredients go into the beverage. You know I dig that! But seriously, the best part is that it tastes magnificent. My brother’s girlfriend will no longer have to disguise the aloe vera juice into a smoothie with lots of other fruits and veggies. She can have this solo!

If you are like me, you may be interested in pH balance and what all this means. Basically, the body is kept at about 7.4 pH balance. Above a pH of 7 is alkaline, while a pH below 7 is acidic. Many of the foods and beverages we consume are acidic (soda is at about a 2 for example), but the body runs optimally when in balance. Remember homestasis from your grade school science class? pHenOH was created as a non-acidic sports drink since most sports drinks are the opposite.

I regularly shop at Target and have not seen pHenOH at Target yet. Maybe someday?! A girl can hope. Currently, in my area, pHenOH can be found at Central Market. I do love a trip to the good ‘ol CM every now and then so will have to pick some up when I run out. It’s so easy and refreshing to grab and go after a workout.

Disclaimer: While I was provided the pHenOH free of charge, all opinions are my own.

Wedding Series Vlog: 8 Weeks!

Wedding Series 6

Less than 8 weeks to go. Hollaaaaa!!!! I am so thrilled… we are having a blast with the planning process and this day is going to be one big PARTAY. Heck yeah!

So, check it… I got a video blog ready for this week’s wedding series recap. No written summary this time because I am too exhausted to type. Haha! How about that?! After this, I am off to sit my booty down and watch a couple hours of TV. 🙂 Bates Motel anyone?!?

Let’s have a question of the day, wedding-style. If you already got married, what was your absolute favorite thing about your wedding? If you are not already married, what are you most looking forward to about your big day?

Happy day, happy week dear friends! Smooches.

What I love about you!

vday

I am really into rhyming and what better day to rhyme then on or near Valentine’s Day?!?! And I figured it would be a great post for the #WithLoveFridays link up. So, here it goes… What I love about you!

What I love about you

is complex and so true.

It goes beyond an outer shell

and into the body’s well.

Your inner beauty is magical,

a heart so pure and full.

________________________

It’s in the way you look at me

before we lay to dream.

When we’re happy, when we’re sad

Or even when we’re mad.

For you being there is enough

To keep the world right when it feels tough.

________________________

I love the way you smile,

it can’t ever go out of style.

And looking into your eyes

is a beautiful beachy sunrise. 

Moments with you I want to freeze

So they don’t blow away like a breeze.

________________________

Let’s hold onto these days

Remembering all of our good ways.

So that even when we grow old

We’ll be in love and forever bold.

Our love will never fade away

Even when the skies turn gray.

-Brianna Peterson 2/13/15

Not trying to be cheesy, but I do think love runs deep. And it runs deep for all relationships, not just romantic relationships. So here’s to rhyming a bit on Valentine’s Day weekend and spreading the love.

How are you going to spread some love this weekend? Spending time with loved ones, pampering yourself (self-love counts too!), or trying a new and fun activity or adventure?

Much love to ya!

Kristie's Blue Jeans

Make Your Own Rules Diet

make your own rules diet

follow Tara Stiles on Instagram. She is a yogi from NYC and started Strala Yoga. Her posts are very inspirational! Well, recently, I ‘ve been seeing her post about her new book titled, “Make Your Own Rules Diet.” I love the sound of that!

Anytime I can make my own rules, I am on board. And lucky for me, Starbucks had this book as their pick of the week a couple weeks ago. So I got it for FREE! And lucky for you, I have 3 extra pick cards for the free download. If you are at all interested, please comment below. The first 3 peeps that comment will get it. It’s a download for iBooks.

So back to it… I am not far into the book yet, but I can already tell it is a good one. Tara has a great way of connecting with her readers and followers. I also love her laid back, connect-to-self mentality. Ever since I embarked on my own mindfulness journey years ago I have been a firm believer in making your own health rules, especially in terms of nutrition.

I used to have the diet mentality, but got rid of it. And once I did, I became free. Free as a bird, I tell ya! I got to choose what food rules would make sense for me and kick the rest to the curb.

Same goes for exercise. There are certain exercises and workouts that I absolutely dread. So guess what?! I don’t do them. I do exercises that keep me thriving and thirsty for more. And I allow my workouts to change with the seasons if need be.

I now listen to my body and connect regularly with what makes me whole. Granted, I still have moments where worry takes over or weeks where eating healthy and exercising are no longer appealing. But, they are just moments and moments are fleeting. So I go with the flow.

All that to say, I buy into making your own rules and am excited to dive into more of this book. I usually read wellness-related books in between the intense, “can’t put it down” fictions to bring me back to reality with a lighter read. It’s perfect timing since I just finished “What Alice Forgot.” That’s a great read too if you need a book club recomendation.

You can find out more about Make Your Own Rules Diet by clicking here.

I turn it over to you… what has been one of your favorite reads the past few months? 

Convo’s With Non-Fitness Enthusiasts

convo's

Today’s Fit Dish link up topic is an interesting one. I am not quite sure where to go with this so I am going to ramble and hope it all makes sense. Before I do, thanks to Jill Conyers and Jessica Joy for hosting!

I have convo’s all the time. It is a part of my job! I create and deliver wellness programs to various businesses so I often hear from employees that have questions, comments, or concerns regarding wellness. Not everyone loves fitness. I get that. We all have our likes and dislikes.

But, when I meet someone that absolutely hates fitness or anything wellness-related, I often think, “Too bad because fitness can turn that frown upside down.” It is not my job to change his or her mind. Stages of change, anyone? Not everyone is fully ready for a change in a certain area (fitness included). However, I love that through living a healthy life I can plant a seed at the very least. We are all on our own journey and in every aspect of life, we are growing at different rates.

There is another end of the totum pole that I want to mention here too. What about the non-credible fitness enthusiasts? Aghh, I cringe! The peeps that tout all sorts of health-related bullshit that isn’t really factual and just creates more and more confusion. I know I have mentioned it before, but most diet and fitness plans are plans that worked for that specific individual. To then claim that it is the BEST for everyone and we should all try it is nonsense. Our taste buds are different, our bodies and genetics are different, our interests are different, and heck even our goals may be different. Not everyone wants to look a specific way! So keep that in mind whenever you read, “Lose weight fast” and “Best diet ever” type of posts or articles. Be your body’s CEO! Don’t let anyone else take that role for you!

I can’t say I have many actual conversations with the non-credible fitness enthusiasts, but I often want to. If only I could tell every diet pill maker to f*** off, I totally would. I have friends that buy into the quick and easy fix, but man oh man is it just a waste of money. Hellooooooo, marketing scheme! It breaks my heart though because certain diets, rigid exercise plans, taking weight loss pills, etc. only lead people further away from a healthy and happy lifestyle that works specifically for him or her. What’s left could be disordered eating, insecurities, depression, overexercising, guilt, and shame.

Turns out when I ramble I get REALLLLLLLLL. Ya know what I’m sayin? So, I guess the gist of it all is that I strongly believe in trusting yourself, loving yourself, and being good to yourself. Even if I can’t change someone’s mind in that regard, I can be a positive influence and perhaps plant a little wellness seed.

Wedding Series Vlog: 13 Weeks!

Wedding Series

 Wedding series vlog time. I have 13 weeks to go! Below is the vlog to kick off this week and then below is my summary of it for those of you who would rather read versus watch. I get you both!

 

First things first, how did I do on last week’s goals?

  1. No sugar. Wasn’t too hard for me during the week, but snack attack hit Saturday evening and I had a sweet tooth so indulged in some Dark Chocolate Truffle Hershey Kisses. Yum! I decided to revamp this goal a tad… after I hit my “sweet” spot, pun intended, I think having 1 sweet per week during this Wedding Series will be JUST FINE! More than fine, actually. You know I don’t like strict do’s and don’ts with nutrition.
  2. No caffeine. Killed it! Decaf coffee and tea is just fine for this lady. I will keep this up. Granted, I did have a withdrawal headache the first two days, but after that felt good. I love that I can now be fully aware of my energy levels. With too much caffeine, I couldn’t tell if I had artificial energy or really was tired and could use a nap. I think it is important to check in with your body and honor what it needs so I will be keeping the no caffeine kick up!
  3. Physical activity daily. This rocked. I did yoga daily and am continuing the 30 Day Yoga Challenge on the Yoga with Adriene youtube channel. I’m on Day 9! I also walked outdoors most days. I incorporated two days of Insanity Max 30. I needed the intensity to burn off some energy and stress during the week. I will up the Insanity Max 30 for this next week.

One other thing I realized this past week is that it is so easily to eat differently on the weekends. Anyone else? I stay up later on Friday and Saturday so often get hungry after dinner and before bed. During the week I don’t really like to eat anything huge before bed because it affects my sleep. But, this past Friday, I was hungry once we got home around midnight.. had a breakfast sandwich from Jack In the Box. When I woke up, I was not hungry for breakfast so skipped breakfast. Then, had a huge snack attack in the middle of the day. It’s a chain effect. I don’t mind doing this every so often, but a better strategy so that I am still hungry for breakfast is to have something small in place of that heavy sandwich after dinner. Perhaps warm milk, a decaf latte, or even a little yogurt.

New goals to kick off this week based off the above:

  1. Have 1 sweet treat per week on Saturdays.
  2. Replace caffeinated drinks with decaf coffee and tea.
  3. Daily yoga coupled with at least 3-4 days of Insanity Max 30. Other days walking outdoors (or both). #200ByWedding
  4. Replace weekend after dinner meal/snack with warm milk.

I got a request to show pictures of a few of my meals so I will be doing that this week and posting for next time. I will also share a few of my favorite toning exercises. Stay tuned! Oh and I will be throwing in some of the planning process for fun… this past weekend we met with our officate. He was AWESOME and I am so excited to have him marry us. MK really liked him too. We are looking for something unique to do in place of a unity candle. Any ideas?

If you missed last week, click here for the blog post and recap.

Much love to ya!

Coping with the loss of a grandma

My grandma and grandpa. Aren't they so cute?!?

My grandma and grandpa. Aren’t they so cute?!?

I woke up yesterday morning like any other morning. Make a glass of hot water with lemon, do a little yoga with Cali, and then make breakfast with MK. Only, on my way to the kitchen yesterday morning I noticed a missed call from my dad and a text that simply said, “Hi Bri, please call me when you have a moment.”

I shudder. Tears start rolling down my eyes as I look at MK and tell him that my dad does not send text messages like this. This has to be serious news. But then I calm myself down and tell myself that he is probably just needing me to check on his house for a bill or something (he and my mom are out of town).

So I call my dad back. His news wasn’t pleasant, but he was so calm. He was so strong as he told me that his mother had passed away in her sleep that morning. My beautiful dad… I just wanted to hug him right then and there. He told me not to be sad and that we should celebrate her life. And we definitely should celebrate her life, with that I agree. But, that doesn’t take away the fact that I want to hug my dad and he wants to hug his dad. We want to be support and love for one another as each other copes. Nothing can make the pain of losing a loved one go away, but being in the arms of another loved one who genuinely understands and empathizes takes a little bit of the pain away if even for a little while.

I don’t have the luxury of being with my parents just yet, but that will come on Thursday. I found other ways to cope yesterday with the news. I was able to have moments of happiness and moments of sadness all in the same day, even the same hour. How does that saying go…. sometimes we get rain to enjoy the rainbow?! Somehow, it fits.

I am an emotional person. I cried yesterday at the thought of never seeing my grandma again on Earth. But on the flip side, I also smiled at the the thought of her not being in physical pain anymore or on any medications. I smiled thinking about how she was probably telling stories in Heaven. She really had a lot of stories… that woman was energy and personality! So many people knew her and loved her presence.

I choose to focus on the memories. They still bring up tears, but they also bring up laughter. I went on a walk yesterday for fresh air and literally had a “laugh cry”. I laughed when I remembered her bringing home funny Christmas gifts and then I cried realizing we won’t have her this Christmas. Then I laughed again remembering how she introduced me to her priest at her church, proclaiming that I was a saint who would never drink, smoke, or have sex. He then asked if I wanted to be a nun. I was, of course, mortified. And in college so I am not sure why or how she came up with those proclamations. I then cried realizing her birthday is today and she almost made it to her 84th birthday. But, maybe that is the irony… maybe God wanted her to be with Him on her birthday. Maybe birthdays aren’t that important after all. I dunno, I like to have reasons for things that don’t have certainties.

Anyway, all that to say, thank you for letting me cope a little more through words. Writing really is therapy for me at times. And before I sign off, I want to have a moment of open script.. a letter to her, if you will…

Dear grandma, 

I love you with all my heart and soul. I have been blessed to call you grandma for 30 years now and I will never forget the memories that I have with you. You made life fun and have pizzazz. You have touched so many lives with your presence and energy. Thank you for the Peterson clan, “Mom Pete”. You and grandpa built a strong, tight-nit family that I am so proud to be a part of. I can’t help but think you are having a blast in Heaven, perhaps sharing stories with others. I hope you are giving your mother a hug right now because I know she meant so much to you. I hope that you are watching over grandpa and letting him know that he will be okay. And I pray that your love shines through each of us daily. Our memories will never fade. Thank you, dear grandma, for being you. Thank you for never being afraid to be yourself. Thank you for showing me that no one has to be a stranger. You could talk to anyone (or anything for that matter) and that is a beautiful gift that is not given to everyone. Thank you for being silly and allowing your grandchildren to make hilarious memories with you in them. I love you, grandma. I will miss you every day of my life, but when I miss you I will smile at your angelic presence and say a prayer for you. A prayer that you are blissful and joyful up in Heaven. 

Love, Bri

If you are coping with a loss this time of year, my thoughts and prayers are with you. It is always tough losing a loved one, but especially around the holidays when things are also joyful. It’s a mixture of emotions, but it’s okay to let yourself be happy in some moments and sad in others. We all cope in our own ways. My heart is with yours!