We’ve already covered that May came and went without saying a proper hello, so we won’t hash that out again. Needless to say, it’s Favorites time again. And I have some good ones for you!
In May I stumbled upon 2 new YouTube channels that have helped rekindle my waning food/diet/wellness motivation. Just like everyone, regardless of the reasons or philosophy being my diet choices I still have periods of low food motivation where I really just want to get that stupidly good Homestyle Chicken Bacon Club sandwich from the Jack-In-The-Box around the corner, or dive into a totally not plant based tub of ice cream. Let’s be honest, the tiramisu cups from Costco took over my life for a wee bit. Anyway, consider my motivation and inspiration rekindled. I have a few beauty products, food items, a gadget, and of course some essential oils for you to check out. So let’s get started.
- First up, Kate Flowers and Mae Flowers on YouTube. These ladies are full on Raw Vegan. The food they eat looks amazing! And their passion for it is contagious. Their biggest recommendation: homemade Green Juice. So naturally I went out Memorial Day weekend and bought a juicer. Totally an impulse buy, but I’m already on my 3rd batch of juice. The first round didn’t turn out so great, but I was missing a few key ingredients. The last 2 have been spot on! These girls are real, down to earth, and so much fun, with great content beyond just their What I Eat In A Day videos, which are amazing inspiration. I highly recommend checking them out, as they also have e-recipe books for their diet styles.
- One of my favorite foods in May was almond butter. I think it was more specifically the almond butter based vegan cookies I’ve started making. I got the recipe out of my Forks Over Knives cookbook that my mom got me. Their Lunchbox Chocolate Chip Cookie recipe is my new favorite recipe in the whole world. I use a combo of white and whole wheat flour, just because that’s what is sitting on my counter. I tried them with Almond Flour and wasn’t as impressed. They are a cakier cookie, so be warned. But I LOVE them! I’ve been making them with white chocolate chips, because that’s what I’ve got. I can get 20 cookies out of the batch and I usually eat 10 while they are still warm. Go make them. Like, now.
- I’ve been trying out a new face cleanser this month that I’m pretty happy with. I recently signed us up for the Dollar Shave Club and was perusing their other bathroom products. After a quick search I found that their products are cruelty free, so felt at liberty to order their Wanderer Hydrating Citrus Hawaiian Ginger daily face cleanser. Disclaimer: I was totally expecting a tropical, spicy fragrance. I mean, come on, Hawaiian? Ginger? Citrus? I’m thinking tropical vacation in a bottle. Nope. Not nearly as strong a scent as I was expecting. It’s more of a fresh, clean smell. Which is probably great for my sensitive face, but it was a bit of a let down. However the formula of this cleanser is great. I have really enjoyed it the past month and am looking forward to trying a few of their other products.
- Walnuts. I think it was Jenny Mustard (from my April Favs post) who got me started. I already had walnuts in my pantry, probably from a past recipe, but I wasn’t using them. Jenny loves walnuts and was talking about their Omega 3 content, so I decided to add them to my breakfast the next day. This may be just a phase for me, but I’m hooked at the moment and eat them daily with my almond milk yogurt, blueberries, and homemade granola.
- My bestie and wedding hair/makeup artist recommended I try the NARS Soft Matte Complete Concealer ahead of my wedding in October. If it plays well with my face and I like it, she might use that as a foundation of sorts for my wedding makeup look. So I went out and dutifully purchased the first 2 shades. This stuff is amazing, no joke. I was in a phase of little to no makeup daily and goodness, I forgot what a hint of concealer does to wake up the under-eye area! Shoot. Since trying this, my daily makeup routine has consisted of Burt’s Bees BB cream, NARS concealer for under eyes and various spots, and my Clinique mascara, and I love it. A little of this concealer goes a long way, but for all it’s coverage it blends easily with even bare skin. I’m all about the natural, no makeup look, so this product is ideal! And as I said, a little goes a long way, so it’s well worth the price tag for those tiny jars.
- Jade Bloom Yoga Blends. I ordered this boxed set back in April, but have really started using these oils in May. I’ve been diffusing these around my house, office, and in my car. They are lovely, with a range of scent profiles – citrus, spicy, savory, light. I do try to keep in mind each blend’s purpose, but mostly I’m just using them because they smell lovely and make me happy. Namaste, and all that.
- Fred Meyer is the best grocery store (in my area anyway) for vegan and other specialty foods. They have a whole section for alternative diets, which is great. While perusing those isles recently, I discovered my new Holy Grail food item: VEGAN GUMMIES! If you know me, you know that I am a sucker for gummies. Any kind, anytime, anywhere. Gummies have been my biggest weakness during my whole foods transition and it’s something I have not been able to give up. So to find vegan gummies readily available at my local grocery store was life altering. The brand is J. Luehders of Germany and they have 3 varieties; berries, fruit flowers, and tropical fruits. I favor none above the others; They are all spectacular and exactly what I needed in my life. The best part is they are packaged in smaller, single serving quantities, so I’m not tempted to sit there and eat a whole multiple servings, 500+ calorie bag in one sitting. Looking at you, Haribo.
- I’m probably a bit behind the curve with this one, but Pat and I both go FitBits recently. I especially wanted one that could track my sleep. I got the Alta HR and Pat got the Charge 2. I’ve been really interested in my sleeping patterns recently, as I feel I am sleeping most of the night but not waking up refreshed. I’m going to swear, probably until the second coming, that it’s our mattress. Pat doesn’t think there’s an issue with it, but as we know, everyone is different. He may be perfectly suited to the mattress we have, I however hate it. I was actually expecting my sleep to look much worse, but I do average 7.5 to 8 hours of sleep most nights per my FitBit. Of that time though, I’ve learned I spend an average of 12% of it awake, so just shy of an hour. I also don’t get more than an hour of deep sleep each night on average. I think this might have something to do with it, but until a new mattress is procured, I don’t know what else to do. It’s been nice to have a vibrating alarm, a reminder to get out of my office chair, and motivation to log multiple bottles of water each day.
I think that’s about it for May. I’m always open to recommendations, so feel free to share in the comments.
Currently drinking: green juice!
Currently eating: all of the cookies…
Hello! I’m Whitney and this is my home for all things food and life.