Making the Switch to a Plant-Based Diet

Watching vegans on YouTube has been a guilty pleasure of mine for about a year now. You may not realize this (because you are a normal person), but there is a great deal of vegan drama on YouTube. It’s no surprise that this drama hooked me; I am a lover of all things Real Housewives after all. Aside from the entertainment value, these vegans embodied all the terrible stereotypes: angry, preachy, condescending. I suppose they convert some people, but they never inspired me to switch to a plant-based diet. More recently I stumbled upon a different kind of vegan: the

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Better Skin Care with Ursa Major

Natural Skin Care Today I am super excited to launch a new series on skin care.  I’m nearing my mid-30s, which means things don’t quite look like they used to and skin care has become ever more important. Throughout my life my skin has been okay and then wonderful and then terrible, rinse and repeat.  While I’m looking to better my lifestyle, I’m also looking for better skin that will last and not leave me searching for new products in six months. In this series I will focus on all-natural skin care brands of varied notoriety and cost. The reason for this focus is

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Whole30 Week One: How to Deal with the Good, the Bad, and the Awful

I hadn’t planned on doing a Whole30 check-in until day 10 or 14. I fully expected to cruise through the program with little effort or struggle until then. After all, this is my second round. Whole30 week one was as good as in the bag. As we say in the south, I got too big for my britches. Over the past few days, I’ve been given my comeuppance. Tired, irritable, generally annoyed with the air that I breathe. Life has really been a party. I legitimately don’t remember feeling any of this during my first round, and I was eating worse prior

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Keys to a Happier 2018

I listen to a lot of podcasts and lately I’ve noticed a trend. More and more they are talking about happiness: how to find it, how to keep it, why it escapes us. Strangely I realized I hadn’t given happiness much thought lately; apart from knowing when I am unhappy, I tend to just live. I think that means I must be mostly happy, but clearly so many of us aren’t. While I’m not an actual happiness expert (Y’all. This is a real thing!), I am an expert in having been very unhappy, miserable even, and turning things around. Keys to a

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A Year of Better

I’ve told you (repeatedly) that 2017 has been a year of change and transformation for me, but what I haven’t mentioned is that in the moment I didn’t realize it. Obviously, I recognized that things had to change, and I was certainly making efforts to do just that.  I didn’t realize the extent to which that change was happening. All of the revelations I uncovered happened only (or at least mostly) in hindsight. In the moment, I didn’t realize I was becoming better. It occurs to me that perhaps that’s how it always is. Maybe when you’re in the moment, doing the

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Dominating Your Whole30 with Thrive Market

I’d love to tell you that deciding to do the Whole30 is the hardest part. Unfortunately, that would be a lie. Making the decision to tackle such an undertaking is HUGE, but let’s be honest. You can’t expect to eliminate 34,095 foods and think it’s going to be a cake walk. (Friendly reminder, cake isn’t allowed. Apologies.)   Get Your Mind Right This is the easily the most important aspect of a successful Whole30. With such a restricted diet, you will have cravings. You will be moody. You will consider quitting. Without the proper mindset, you will give in to

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Life is in the Little Things

it’s the little things Several months ago my friend Katie blogged about the things that make her happy. She wasn’t talking about those generic answers we give: family, friends, etc. She meant those little things that bring us joy that we often forget about in the hustle and bustle of living. If I’ve learned anything from my experiences with loss and depression, it’s that life is in the little things! Traveling this planet isn’t easy. Every day brings us millions of (valid) reasons to throw our hands up and declare that all hope is lost. That’s where these small pleasures

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Why Everyone Should Do a Whole30

I was still pregnant when I decided my husband  and I would do a Whole30 after the baby came. I think he only agreed because challenging any idea your very pregnant wife has is dangerous, but he agreed nonetheless. In hindsight it probably wasn’t the best timing. New baby, crazy hormones, postpartum depression; let’s also eliminate foods that are generally comforting. What could possibly go wrong? I didn’t recognize it at the time, but the Whole30 was step one on my journey to better. In many ways, it was also the easiest step. Sure, there were a lot of rules, but this didn’t require

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Resolutions that Last: Powering Through Plateaus

Whatever your goal may be, big or small, you will eventually plateau. You’ll be making great strides, checking off all of your smaller goals and then out of nowhere, your progress will stall. The bad news is, you can’t avoid plateaus altogether. The good news is, knowing it’s coming helps you prepare ahead of time. when plateaus strike Remember why you started. Lucky for you, I anticipated this very moment.  Initial excitement fades. Motivation wanes. A plateau strikes, and you’re ready to call it a day. This is where your why comes in! Did you want to learn to dance for

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Dealing with Holiday Depression

Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year, right? Everyone basks in the joy of the season. Everyone feels warm and fuzzy. We’re all a little nicer to one another (except on Black Friday), and it’s generally a happy time. Only for some of us, it simply isn’t. According to Google holiday depression is a legitimate malady, which frankly, is a relief. It’s nice to know that enough people deal with this that it has an official name. not so happy holidays My older brother passed away when I was fourteen, and that’s the first time I remember Christmas being

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