Hi everyone, how are you hanging in there?
It’s been a really weird week for me. We’re in Week Four of quarantine here in New York City (sigh), and coming up on Week Five by Sunday. It’s a lot to wake up to and realize that this is our new normal, and it’s definitely starting to wear on me.
I highlight a lot of the great things in our lives on this blog, but I also try to keep it real when I feel that aspect should be included. So here you go … this week was a challenge for me on many different levels, and that’s okay.
There isn’t a manual we can read to know how to deal with these types of unprecedented circumstances, nor should there be one. We are all handling everything the best way that we know how, and this means different things for everyone. And it’s all okay and warranted. My heart just aches for the families who are physically affected by the virus, and also for the heroes who are working on the front lines through it all. You are in my prayers on the regular, along with all who are affected mentally, financially, and more.
Scott and I shared a piece of our story with our church on how we’ve been through this situation of indefinite uncertainty on the job front before. It’s never easy, and in fact, it’s terrifying. The one thing that has held us together each time, however, is our faith in God’s plan for us … because He always shows up and He is always on time.
If you’d like to hear the full story, you can listen here, and I hope it offers some encouragement and truth for you.
On that note, let’s dive in to this week’s usual wrap-up with Friday Favorites. Here’s what I’ve been trying to focus on through the madness and a few fun things to discuss …
- little moments seen on my walks and runs
The best part about getting out for fresh air right now is appreciating the little things that I might not stop to notice on a regular basis.
I’ve been seeing more sidewalk chalk drawings than ever, and the best ones have encouraging messages to share. When I see quotes like the one above, I picture a family sitting outside and drawing together and, for a moment, everything seems better.
The weather has been up and down and all over the place in Brooklyn, but spring has most certainly arrived in New York. It’s a beautiful sight to see.
I’ve been taking long walks with Skyler and Roadie every morning, and while we don’t get to play on the playground, we still enjoy our time together at the park. Roadie is absolutely loving the mileage he’s getting and Skyler finds ways to stay entertained, too.
I’m very thankful for the park that we have nearby to be able to (safely) take in as much fresh air as we all need right now. Everyone has done a great job at staying distanced, and most wear masks and gloves, too.
It’s a strange time for sure, but I have been living for the time I get outside when I get it.
- Coronavirus Daily: NPR Podcast
I’ve purposely been distancing myself from the news over the past month or so. I read The New York Times that gets delivered to my inbox every morning along with theSkimm, so I’m informed. I guess I’ve never been one to watch the news, however, because it always seems depressing to me and seems to drive more anxiety than the facts or helpful information. But that’s just me!
In an effort to hear more about Coronavirus updates, I searched for a quick podcast that I could turn to on the daily and found this one that has been perfect. Every episode is 15 minutes or less, it has a calm tone, it delivers facts, and it spreads hope and encouragement more than anything.
Also, please share the podcasts you’ve been loving in the comments section, too. I would love more to listen to on my walks and appreciate the input.
- healthy snacking with NOW Foods & a GIVEAWAY!
I’m excited to share that I’ll be teaming up with NOW Foods for a few months to bring you some healthy eating inspiration! You might remember that I got an in-depth look into what the company is all about on Immersion Trip to their factory near Chicago last year. It was a blast!
NOW makes natural products that helps lead healthier lives. They focus on high quality, safe products and to make them accessible to anyone with a very reasonable price point. They take the word natural and really focus on that, with a transparent ingredient list as well as the production atmosphere. You can find vitamins, supplements, essential oils, food, pet essentials, and more on their website, or through retailers like Amazon and Whole Foods.
So. This all brings me to a very important question for you …
What are you snacking on during quarantine right now?
I love a few handfuls of chips like the best of ’em, but I’m really trying to stay focused on better-for-me options like fruit and vegetables as much as possible. I always keep a good mix of homemade trail mix on hand, too.
If you haven’t gotten on the fruit and nut mixes train yet, you might want to! Trail mixes (excluding the bags that only include sweets and saturated fats) can supply nutrients that some people have trouble fitting into their everyday eats, such as antioxidants, fiber, and healthy fats.
My favorite combos always include a mix of dried fruit, almonds, and a few extras. This bowl features dried pineapple rings, mango slices, organic raw almonds, certified organic golden berries, organic shredded coconut, and organic raw cacao nibs!
GREAT NEWS — you can create your own bowl, thanks to my friends at #NOWfoods who will ship the same care package of snacks to one of YOU!
Make sure to visit this post on Instagram to enter to win by Tuesday 4/14 at Midnight EST. and a big thank you to NOW Foods for sponsoring this!
- Beautycounter deals and news
There’s a lot of sunny things happening over on Beautycounter right now and since I haven’t mentioned anything in a few weeks, here we go!
Right now, the site is 20% off for new clients. If you’ve never purchased from Beautycounter before and might be interested in taking the leap to switch over to safer skincare and makeup, this would be an ideal time. Simply click on the top of the banner, enter your email, and you’ll get a unique promo code to use at checkout for your first order.
a NEW two-product line called Counterstart launched and is perfect for anyone looking to start small and get the essentials. The main ingredients are coconut and aloe soothing oils with Vitamin E to protect the skin from environmental aggressors. They’re great for anyone (including those with sensitive skin), are completely fragrance-free, and come at a much lower price point.
The Band of Beauty Membership free gift this month is the Overnight Resurfacing Peel, and it’s one of my all-time favorites. The membership is key, in my opinion, and will get you free shipping on orders $100+, 10% product credit back, and the peel for free when you sign up. The best.
Also, the free enrollment offer is extended through the end of April! Check out my post on consultant FAQs and please reach out if this interests you. I’ve been so thankful for this opportunity, now more than ever.
Let me know if you need any help at all. I would love to help you get the best deals. You can always fill out my quick skincare survey, and I would love if if you signed up for the beauty newsletter for extra information and giveaway opportunities!
- moving (even just a little) every day
My workouts have admittedly been all over the place lately, and that’s okay right now. That said, I have a goal to move every day, whether it’s to go for a long walk, a run, lift some dumbbells, complete a yoga flow, or even stream a barre or Pilates workout online.
I’ll also admit that my motivation to work out isn’t always there. It’s a strange time for all of us, and I have good days and bad days, too. That said, I’ve never regretted a workout after it’s over. I try to remember that when I’m not “feeling it” and usually opt for a quicker workout on those days. Twenty minutes is better than nothing, my friends!
(And yes, I usually have invasions from a toddler and pets with every at-home workout.)
Here’s a few you could try if you’re looking in that category:
15 Min. Legs & Abs Workout (also includes bouts of cardio!)
Let me know what you’ve been enjoying!
- favorite LIL posts
This is Chicken Succotash is a colorful and customizable recipe with a Southern flare! All you need is a roundup of your favorite vegetables, a few spices, a big skillet, and about thirty minutes to throw it together. Skip the meat or beef it up with add-ins … the possibilities are endless.
This workout features compound strength training exercises in Tabatas! All you need is a light and medium set of dumbbells and a mat. Exercise breakdowns, a video, and a fun Tabata playlist is included.
All right. I better get going with my day! I haven’t been getting the best sleep this week (and neither has Skyler – woof), so I’m actually planning to nap with him this afternoon … which never happens.
Other plans for the weekend include cleaning up around our apartment, more organizing, catching up with loved ones over the phone, cooking new dishes, and celebrating Easter with an online church service. (Here’s a link to ours if you need some encouragement.)
Stay safe out there and Happy Friday!
*Disclaimer: The healthy snacking portion of this post is sponsored by NOW Foods. Also, I am a Beautycounter consultant and love what I do with the company. By using the links provided in this post to order products, you are supporting my business. I always appreciate you!