So I was able to edit some more pictures last night and wanted to share them with you. This will be the last of the vacation posts, I promise :) We didn't realize that where we were in New York was smack dab in the middle of wine country. The Chautauqua - Lake Erie Wine Trail stretches 47 miles -- and we were staying almost right at the half way mark. There were 17 wineries within a 20 mile stretch south of us and the remaining 6 wineries were spread out on the 27 mile stretch north of us. So we decided on our way out of town that we were going to try to hit as many as we could in a couple hours. We made it to 5 in all -- unfortunately time wasn't on our side, but we got a lot of tasting in!

First stop @ Johnson Estate Winery. This was by far my favorite. Didn't
cost anything to taste most of the wines, with the exception of the ice
wines and a few others. The vibe and overall experience was great! We
ended up buying a bottle of Chardonnay here, but I'd highly recommend
the White Spiced Wine they had here. Super yummy and served hot.
Second Stop @ Noble Winery. The view here was AMAZING. You got a
great panoramic of Lake Erie and it's high up on a hill, so it's nothing but
grapes and nature! You got 5 tokens for a $1 and they were discontinuing
some of their wines, so we picked up some great deals.
Third Stop @ Sensory Winery. This one was a bit off for me. It was one part
winery and three parts art gallery. They only had 3 things that weren't sold out
and overall, the atmosphere was non existent. We did like the only red wine
they had though (not pictured) and bought it. Unfortunately it broke in the
trunk of the rental car on the way home. UGH
Fourth Stop @ Quincy Cellars. This place was entirely too stuffy for my
liking. It was $5 per glass to taste -- and it'd be taken off your purchase
of a bottle. You got to taste the whole list for that price -- about 8-10
different wines, but we only wanted to have 3 off the list, and still only
got one glass for our $5 bucks! I really liked their Vidal Blanc though, so
we bought a bottle, but it was also the most expensive winery we went to.
Fifth and Final Stop @ Arrowhead Wine Cellar. This was just over the PA
border and right across the street from another winery that we never made it
over to. They had a TON of things to chose from -- $1 for 4 tastings. It also
was a spot to get all kinds of wine gifts/decor/etc. They had a number of
great wines and I ended up scooping up two, including this one in a cobalt
lighthouse bottle that I can't wait to do something fun with once I drink it!

All in all, it was a blast. Wish we had a little more time and a chauffeur and we would've been set for the day. Guess that just means that we'll have to plan an extra day in for it next time we're all in New York :)


HOME AT LAST! Vacations are great, but when you're trying to pack as many things as you can into a small amount of time (not to mention the 12+ hour to and from + an extra 4.5 hours round trip to Canada) it's overwhelming and a bit stressful at times. I must say though, that it was one of the best vacations that I've been on in a while! I wanted to post some pictures from the trip for you guys and there's a ton more that I need to edit and such. But this should wet your appetite for now :)

Coming thru Cincinnati on the way to NY -- absolutely beautiful
city. Thinking of planning a weekend trip up here soon!
Me and the fam fam at the New York state line :) 
On the porch of where we were staying -- this is the Lake Chautauqua
Inlet behind their house. Very peaceful.
My first picture of Niagara Falls! Was pretty misty the day we went, but
was still one of the most amazing things I've ever witnessed!
View off the back of the Maid of the Mist -- we were on the Canada side.
That's Rainbow Bridge and the American Falls in the background.
One of at least 3.5 dozen pictures that I took while we were on the MOTM.
So glad that I own a waterproof case for my iPhone :) This is of Horseshoe
Falls -- ie the main fall at Niagara.
There was so much to do besides just see the Falls. We strayed upon
this putt putt course and decided to do a little golfing after dinner. 
They had like 3 huge T-Rex's through out the course. And a huge raging
volcano that literally spewed the hottest fire every 30 seconds or so.
I overcame my fear of heights long enough to ride the Sky Wheel. It had
a great view of the Falls and the whole surrounding area. Picture doesn't
do it justice, but it was 175 feet high :)

So all in all, you can see that we had a pretty great trip. It was awesome to knock Niagara Falls off my bucket list and I can't wait to go back again when the kiddo is a little older. I think it's definitely one of those things that everyone should experience in their lifetime. It's worth every penny and every second!

What's your favorite vacation memory?

Eat Your Colors.

So I've decided that since I don't post anything usually on the weekends, that Friday's posts are going to be centered around motivating you to 'eat your colors' over the weekend. Even if you've eaten horribly over the week -- you can still catch up on some of your vitamins and nutrients on the weekend (and vice versa). It's never too late to start packing the rainbow into your every day diet -- it starts one day at a time. I love this makes me think about tacos! And what isn't great about tacos!

Can you point out the three fruits in this picture?

Juicy Thursday!

I'm noticing a trend for Thursdays -- the last two weeks I've posted something about juicing! I guess my subconscious is preparing me for the guilty feeling I'm going to have after eating bad over the entire weekend. I don't know what's gotten into me lately. I did so good the month before my juice fast -- and then I did a 10 day fast and held onto the torch for a couple more weeks and then slowly started letting it all slip away. Don't get me wrong, I haven't gained any of the 15lbs back that I lost since changing my eating mindset, but I have noticed my energy level and my overall motivation starting to dwindle. It started with one meal a week and now has turned into several (and I mean several) meals, sometimes more than one a day. I went from cutting Starbucks completely out for a couple months, to having one four times last week! What happened? I guess I just fell off the juice (band)wagon. Monday is a new week though and I'll tell you what, I think I'm finally ready to hop back on. And I mean truly make an effort and prepare myself for another juice fast in the real near future. 

For all of you that are still doing good with your clean eating and juicing regimens, here's a little more 'Instagram Inspiration' and motivation to keep on track!


What's your favorite juice combination from this week?

Bucket List.

So this is a little off topic -- but I'm so excited that I want to share. I'm leaving today for New York and while I'm up there -- Niagara Falls! It's something that's been on my 'to do list' for quite sometime and when I sat down and made a formal bucket list at the beginning of this year, it was something that I definitely had to add! I'm so stoked right now! I know it will be completely worth the 12 hour car ride one way with a toddler!

Here are a few more things on the list that I've checked off recently or am crossing my fingers for soon: (photo credits:

Ok, so I did this one a WHILE ago, but still, one of my biggest
life dreams come true! Can't wait to go back one day!
Growing some peppers this year, but can't wait to have a yard and
do something a little bigger :)
Knocked this one off last summer when I got addicted to canning. Was almost
a sickness -- I was literally hoarding mass amounts of food. I decided I'll wait
until I have an actual house with a pantry before I can anything else!
Thanks to you guys I'm on my way!!
On the horizon for next year -- can't wait to build our own!

What are the top items on your bucket list? What have you already checked off?


So it seems like I've been focusing a lot on fruit lately in my posts and wanted to switch it up a bit and do some veggie stuff since I tend to favor them more in solid form and prefer to juice my fruits. When I was growing up, my mom was always told to make sure she emphasized veggies with me since fruit is more likable by youngsters because it's sweet. Kind of a double edged sword though because I love veggies now, but turn my nose up to most fruits. I guess it's really a texture thing for me. Oh, and seeds. I can't stand things that get stuck in my teeth. But I love smoothies and juicing, so I guess all in all at this point, I get a good amount of fruit in my diet.

One of my favorite vegetables is asparagus. I find that people tend to frown on it and I truly believe it's because it hasn't been cooked right for them. I've always been told that the more crunch you have in your veggies, the more nutrients you get and the healthier they are for you. Raw is always best, but some things just don't taste right uncooked. I prefer to steam these lightly or saute them with some seasoning and a little grapeseed oil.

I've recently learned some tricks to storing and using asparagus: (1) When buying it, try to find bunches that don't have really dry or split ends -- this means they've been harvested for a while and won't taste as fresh. (2) When you get them home and place them in the fridge, take either a damp paper towel or a small bowl of water and soak the ends until you use them. (3) Lastly, when you go to cook them, don't just chop off the ends like I use to. Take each individual piece (or several at a time if you're in a hurry) and gently bend them. They will snap on their own in just the right place. Then you won't end up wasting any of the 'good' moist part. And you can take the remaining 'dry' parts and stick them in the fridge to use for juicing! No waste!

So down to the nutritional nitty gritty:

  • Detoxes our bodies -- has 288mg of potassium per cup which helps reduce belly fat and has no sodium in it which prevents bloating. Also has good amounts of fiber and low calories.
  • Has anti-aging properties -- has glutahione in it which helps fight against free radicals. 
  • An aphrodisiac -- yep you heard right. Apparently the shape is said to trigger some sort of natural reaction that arouses you. The French word for asparagus is used as slang for the male genitalia.
  • Protect against cancer  and reduce the risk of heart disease -- high in folate which is said to help protect our bodies from both issues.
  • Helps prevent osteoporosis and osteoarthritis -- is said to be the number one source of Vitamin K which aids in bone formation and repair. 
  • Helps prevent birth defects -- this is also due to the high levels of folate which most people supplement with folic acid (not the same though).  Helps to regulate the nerve cell formation of the fetus and may help in preventing premature births, Spina Bifida, and anencephaly.
  • Reduces pain and inflammation -- again, the folate helps with this.
  • Can help prevent and reduce UTI's and Kidney Stones.

Additional Sources: Eating Well -- Health Diaries -- WHFoods


What are some of your favorite ways to cook or use asparagus in your diet?

Vitamin Boosters.

So the trend of last week continues -- I am swamped with so many things going on! Trying to return phone calls from last week now that I have my iPhone back. Packing and getting ready for our New York/Niagara Falls trip on Wednesday. Searching for a new place to live. Trying to pay bills and schedule orders for things that I get shipped to me monthly. AND trying to entertain my little one while doing all this! UGH It's just a lot to take on. Not to mention I was going to try to 'get ahead' with my blog so that I could still post while out of town -- who knows if that'll even happen :) So in the meantime, enjoy this little tidbit that I found a week or so ago when researching different juice recipes. I've tried all these recipes since then and they're all very tasty. 

**Special Note on Beets: Make sure that anytime you add these to your juice recipe(s) that you don't make up more than 50% of your end result. I'll try to touch on this in the weeks to come, but everything I've read is pretty particular about this for health/reaction reasons. 

What are some of your go to recipes for colds, detoxing or energy boosts?

Rainbow Weekend.

So I don't have any time to research and write an actual post today. I have some good ones that I'm working on as we speak though. I've been wanting to cover some pretty big topics -- Monsanto, GMOs, Milk, etc -- but don't want to jump into them until I feel that I understand them 100%. May have to drag them out over several posts to really pack everything in and not short you guys :) Just a reminder that the Nashville Farmer's Market downtown is having their Night Market from 6:30 to 8:30 tonight so you can sip and shop and have some food while you're at it! Enjoy your weekend guys and remember to eat your colors!!

Just Juice.

So I've been juicing primarily most of this week and trying to cut back on everything else. Not sure I'm quite ready for an all out juice fast again, but the more pictures I see lately, the more I'm contemplating the idea. Would be nice to have someone to do it with -- like an accountability partner per say. It's hard with the beau in the house eating takeout every night or talking about his daily food consumption -- doesn't matter what he eats, he always complaining about losing weight. Me on the other hand, not the case :) So here's some 'Instagram Inspiration' of just some plain 'ole juice!

@barkadajane -- apple, ginger, red cabbage and red bell peppers
@electricbluebk -- this is a shot of a local 'juice' truck making the rounds
@leanlibrarian -- kale, cucumber, GS apples, celery, zucchini and some herbs
@theveggieme -- sells these beautifully presented juices in Canada,
check out their website

 Soooo anyone want to do a juice fast with me?


So I've been seeing a lot of stuff lately on Kiwis and thought that I'd share some of the health benefits of these little fuzzy gems and some 'Instagram Inspiration'!

  • Kiwis are a high source of fiber and help alleviate constipation and help with prevention of certain cancers associated with the digestive systems.
  • Researchers have found that by consuming 5-7 servings of kiwi or citrus a week, children have less issues with wheezing, coughing and shortness of breath. Adults who suffer from asthma can benefit too from eating 1-2 servings a week. 
  • Kiwis are sweet, but have a low glycemic index of 52 --  making this an ideal snack or 'dessert' for those trying to lose weight or for those that are diabetic. 
  • Daily consumption of these little gems can help reduce the risk of blood clots and decrease triglycerides. 
  • One servings contains 10% of your daily folate which is huge for pregnant women and nursing mothers. 
  • Kiwis are packed with phytonutrients which help repair your DNA and protect your body from an array of different cancers that can attack your body. It also serves as a big antioxidant that helps fight off free radicals in your system. 
  • High source of vitamin E which helps boost immunity and lower cholesterol.
  • One fruit alone gives your body 230% of your daily Vitamin C. 
  • "Potassium is a mineral that helps keep your body's fluids and other minerals in balance. Too little may lead to weakness, stroke and irregular hearbeat. One cup of kiwi contains 552mg of potassium, more than the 467mg found in a small banana."
@tasteofjayde -- vanilla coconut kiwi icee pops

What are some of your favorite recipes with kiwis?