Feeling Whole this Mother’s Day + Ageless Strawberry Kiwi Collagen Smoothie

Feeling Whole this Mother’s Day + Ageless Strawberry Kiwi Collagen Smoothie

Disclosure: I’m partnering with Stonyfield Organics Yogurt, all opinions expressed here are 100% my own.

“What do you want for Mother’s Day?” I get this question a lot lately. I’ve written at great length about the gifts that matter to me, and they can’t be bought in a store. I always ask for uninterrupted time with the family, just enjoying each other’s company. While this is still true, this year has been a year where I’ve learned to put myself first a bit. I’ve focused less on pleasing everyone around me, and more on celebrating my authentic self. I’ve taken some time to really focus on what keeps me whole. It’s the small peaceful moments (I call these pockets of peace), that really keep me going.

A balanced and nutritious diet is the fuel my body needs to keep going, a sense of purpose and overall feeling of self-gratification is also important to me. I find lots of peace in having compassion for myself and understanding that I am always doing my best. Giving back and making conscious decisions in different areas of my life is also key to helping me feel whole. Loving and embracing all of these parts of me is essential to being a good, mother, wife, and person.

Collagen Smoothie

 

Which is why when Stonyfield Organic and prAna clothing line partnered up this month, I was excited to participate. I feel whole when I am balanced and making deposits in all areas of my life. I try to take a bit of “me time” to get my body moving. Whether it be yoga, or just going for a walk. The prAna clothing line is perfect for this lifestyle, their pieces transition smoothly for a mom like myself on the go. This Liana summer sweater can go from the yoga studio, to picking up the kids from school, and out to dinner. Simplifying your wardrobe is key to a stress-free life. I love using Stonyfield Organics Whole Milk Greek Yogurt in my fruit smoothies. I never have to worry about any pesticides, hormones, antibiotics, or GMO’s. Only organic pasteurized yogurt perfect for smoothies, or just a quick nutritious snack. I added collagen powder to this delicious smoothie for added support. We could all use a little more collagen ladies!

 

Collagen Smoothie

Less stress means less wrinkles, let’s face it. Watching what I put into my body is also one way I stay balanced. Just taking a moment to just sit and enjoy myself with a few tiny pleasures (like my new favorite comfy prAna sweater), while enjoying a nutritious yogurt smoothie that is good and good for me. This is what I will be celebrating this Mother’s Day. Me, the WHOLE me.

From now until May 31st, you can save 15% on your entire prAna purchase online when you use coupon code WHOLES17EEV. Enjoy!

Essentially yours,

Erika


 

Wedding Tips for the Millenial Bride

Wedding Tips for the Millenial Bride

Thank you GoDaddy for sponsoring this post. Get started on building your own website with GoCentral today!

I have fond memories of planning my wedding. The day after my then-boyfriend proposed, I must have bought at least five bridal magazines. We hit the ground running the old-fashioned way. Before Pinterest or any online inspiration, crafty lovers had to scour the pages of magazines creating vision boards before vision boards were even a real thing. I spent long hours hot gluing myself to favors sitting in a sea of bows, pearls, and fabric. A lot has changed since then.

Wedding

Times They Are a Changin’

 

I’m pretty sure ladies everywhere are still crafting away, but now with a lot more accessible inspiration. With the help of hundreds of online wedding sites providing tons of tips for the bride to be. You can decide on a theme, plan your entire wedding party’s attire, and even create a schedule to help you stay on track all the way leading up to the big day. When planning our wedding, one of the biggest struggles we had was communication. Constantly relaying information to two different families and trying to get everyone on the same page was some feat. It sucked lots of energy from my fiance and myself, and we wound up paying the price through our stress levels and poor diet. I lost an addition fifteen pounds just before my wedding and had to have my dress re-fitted twice in the last two weeks leading up to my wedding.

Of course this isn’t what I remember when I watch our wedding video, or look at our photo albums. But it was a large part of the planning process.

 

Tip #1: Get Online

 

Everything is online these days, and wedding planning is no exception. Technology is taking over and wedding websites – with a customized domain – are a part of a new trend that helps keep all of your guests and wedding party both informed, and involved.

With the help of GoDaddy, today’s bride can create her very own wedding website that keeps all of her guests and attendants up to date on all changes made to time, dates, location. It’s a wonderful tool I wish I had at my disposal when we were planning. Coordinating seven bridesmaids and groomsmen would have been a lot easier. You can include all kinds of information on your site, including FAQ’s for your guests and really cut down on the last-minute phone calls asking whether or not it’s appropriate for someone’s date to wear white at the wedding. I’m not kidding this was a conversation with a guest at 11pm the night before my wedding. You can create a contact form to collect RSVPs, maps to help your guests navigate their way to the wedding, even post photo galleries of you and your soon-to-be spouse.

GoDaddy

 

GoDaddy’s new website builder makes creating your dream wedding website a cinch. After all, this site may be the first impression your wedding guests receive. It’s often set up before the invitations have gone out, which can help get the excitement going for your big day. It’s also a great way for your wedding guests to communicate among themselves, arranging hotel rooms and such. With Go Central you can have your wedding website up and running in under an hour!

 

Tip #2: Less Is More

Wedding

 

With minimalism on the rise, today’s bride is realizing that it doesn’t take a lot to make a wedding feel special. It’s the personal and meaningful details that make the moment memorable. Over the top floral arrangements and big poofy dresses are a thing of the past. A simple barn with outdoor twinkle lights and a simple and understated lace dress is enough to make the evening feel magical. Don’t go over budget or out of your way to fit some Pinterest worthy ideal.

 

Tip #3: To Thine Own Self Be True

Wedding

Everyone’s a critic. Seriously, if you spend your days trying to please everyone else (family included), you will be miserable on your wedding day, and perhaps longer. This is a pattern of behavior that will not serve you well in any aspect of your life. Ask yourselves who you absolutely cannot spend this day without, and how can we include them all on our day celebrating love. While it’s important to share in this special celebration, it’s essential that you do not let the real meaning of this day get lost in all of the minutiae. Select your wedding party with your best interests at heart. You may have a friend you’ve known a really long time, but perhaps she isn’t particularly crafty, or great at planning events. The pressure of her living up to your wedding expectations or the stress of you having to perhaps pick up the slack, is enough to ruin a friendship. Make these selections for the good of the whole. Sometimes this means simplifying it, and cutting back on traditional methods. A lot of modern wedding have no wedding party at all. Don’t feel pressured to ask friends or family because it’s what you think they’ll want you to do. It isn’t doing anyone a favor, this thinking is archaic, and can cause more discord than not asking at all. It’s considered rude for anyone to assume you should ask them to be a part of your wedding party anyhow. Those that truly love and support you will not be swayed by your decisions. Listen to your heart and spend these precious moment with the people you couldn’t live without. At the end of the day, they are who will be there for you all along.

Wedding

Essentially yours,

Erika


I was selected for this opportunity as a member of CLEVER and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Reverse Sun Damage Naturally

Reverse Sun Damage Naturally

When I was growing up, every summer we’d spend long days at the beach. My mom, often referred to as Miss Fun in the Sun, couldn’t get enough of the salt life. Living in New York, and incapable of driving (it’s a public service at this point in her life), left her with only a few transportation options. She would either pack us up with enough supplies to last all day and routinely spend 6-8 hours basking in the sun, or we’d spend the weekend with my aunt who did drive, and make our way to Brighton Beach.  It was the eighties, and skin damage was not at the top of most people’s priority list.

I have fond memories of eating sandy PB&J’s with my cousins and downing what could only be described now as poison water. Yes, we drank high fructose corn syrup, Red Dye #40, and lived to tell about it. But what I don’t remember, is anyone applying or re-applying sunscreen, or working to fight off any of the damage that all of that fun in the sun was sure to cause.

 

Here and Now

 

Fast forward twenty years, and we’ve learned a lot since the eighties. Like black lacquer is never a good idea, and Spam doesn’t fall anywhere in the four major food groups. These days I bring more than an umbrella and chairs to the beach. I invested in a 10 x 10 erectable tent, my kids wear rash guards with UV protection, and we re-apply Goddess Garden Organics  SPF 50 like its going out of style. I’m careful not to expose my face to the sun all that much by wearing fun beach hats. It depends on the day really, sometimes my look can be described as more of a mom on safari motif. Although this is helpful, unfortunately it isn’t enough to ward off the signs of sun damage. Adopting a good routine with the best skin care products is your best shot at staying safe and even preserving your body’s largest organ (your skin).

Fact: Did you know that 90% of visible skin damage are caused by the Sun? The Sun can add 5-7 years to your skin’s appearance.  Let’s face it, Sun = wrinkles people.

Natural Skin Care

 

Prevention

 

One of the ways I am now combatting the effects of sun damage (most of this damage occurs after the age of 40 due to the thinning of your skin and the UV rays to penetrate deeper) and even turning back the hands of time, are with my new favorite products from Goddess Gardens Organics new skin care line. After just 90 days of use, 100% of test subjects noted results. Skin was firmer, brighter, and had reduced the amount of wrinkles! I have been using these products for the past thirty days and I am pleasantly surprised. They aren’t heavy, or greasy. They are smooth to the touch and I can instantly feel my skin is more hydrated.

Sun Damage

Skin Care

 

Harmful Products

 

Not all skin care is created equal. Unfortunately, there are a ton of products that promise instant results, and they may even be able to deliver on those promises, but at a cost. Most of these kinds of products contain harmful chemicals like retinol.

Some of the side effects of retinol include:

  • Redness
  • Flaking / Dry Skin
  • Uncomfortable tightness
  • Itching
  • Burning
  • Breakouts / Pimples
  • Many more…

Natural Skin Care

Goddess Garden Organics Under The Sun Pre-Sunscreen Serum and Face The Day Sunscreen & Firming Primer hold true to the Goddess code of ethics, containing only natural ingredients like licorice root and mango butter. After 90-days of continual use it can reduce the sign of wrinkles by up to 23%!

This duo came in this adorable travel case that I now keep all of my sun-care products for easy on-the-go use. I have partnered with Goddess Garden Organics to give away a free gift to one of my readers! Simply enter below  by April 1st for your chance to win.

 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck to all of my readers, one lucky winner will be on their way to enjoying the Sun a little bit more, minus the damage!

Natural Skin Care

 

Essentially yours,

Erika


Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. As always all opinions and obsessions with anything organic expressed here are my own. I have partnered with Goddess Garden Organics to bring this giveaway to one of my lucky readers, this is no way affects my opinion of this product. I only share products that I truly believe are organic and essential.

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