Healthy Living : The Best Stress-Relieving Teas You Need To Try ☕️

I’m a bit of a stress monster. Partially beacause I cannot handle change. Partially beaucae I suffer from diagnosed OCD. I can stress over small stuff like wrinkles in sheets and I can stress over BIG stuff like being late to work or a meeting.

Stress is so common these days. With technology, deadlines, the work week keeps breaching into the weekend and of course social media telling us we NEED to do MORE. MORE. MORE.

I wanted to put end to at least a little of my anxietyn ridden, suffering so I’ve added in a new yoga routine (you can read that article here) AND I’ve learned how to meditate (this article is here). On top of all of it, I’ve even added a new “tea routine” to my diet. Sipping on warm herbal teas at night to help me unwind and de-stress from the day. So here’s my list! My list of favorite unwinding, relaxing heart warming teas.

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“>Lavender & Honey > A Yogi Tea my absolutle #1 favorite stress releaving tea. It even says so right on the box 😉 Just be warned, do not drink this at work or while driving. Just. Few sips of tea and I was completely asleep. Best paird with warm milk and a splash of honey.

“>Zen > A Tazo Tea beautiful green tea paired with lemon grass. A almost minty/lemon favor and is absolutely delicious. You can drink this straight, warm or iced. If you like it a little sweeter add a “>“>teaspoon of organic stevia.

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“>Lavender Early Gray Black Tea > A Revolution Tea if you are looking for a good nights sleep after a stressful day look no further then this tea. Beautiful bitterness from the black tea paid with beautiful sweet lavendar.

“>Carmel Bedtime Tea > Antoher Yogi Tea! Sweet like desert, but will put you right to bed. This is a yummy, tantalizing Carmel tea ☕️ Pair this with a spool full of honey and it’s better than desert!

Speaking of deserts: I’m an emotional eater (I mean who isn’t??) but I’d rather not eat sweets before bed (sugar, for me at least tends to make anxiety and stress a lot worse). Instead, I sip on the very best desert flavored teas. “>Tazo makes three of the BEST desert flavored teas that are offered > Glazed Lemon Loaf, Buttersoctch Blondie AND Vanilla Bean Macaroon. Who says tea is just herbal? Try these delicious deserts to curve your sweet tooth. I’m a weirdo and paired this with honey and warm coconut milk 😍😍


What are your favorite stress releaving teas? I would love to hear about them in the comments below! Thank you all for reading! 👩🏻‍💻♥️🐶 Be sure to follow us on Instagram too 

Id love to hear from ya, cause your my cup of tea 😉

Life Hack : A look inside my private writing (and hiding) space 🧘‍♀️🧘‍♀️

My husband, Tinsel the dog and myself live a medium sized condo – we have one bedroom and one bath. Although we love living in our smaller lifestyle (Less cleaning/maintain everything), sometimes I feel like I have no “me space.” A space for me to focus on my writing and meditation. AND to also find somewhere I can show off my cacti collection 😏😏

So I set my mind to it this weekend. I wanted to create a my own zen space. I started off by collecting some floor cushions, I was lucky enough to have been given these by a friend FOR FREE! I snagged an extra shelf from our storage closet. I picked up these ADORABLE black and white printed outdoor rugs from IKEA for $15!

Aren’t these rugs freakin’ adorable?? This is my second set of these same rugs….since my little bunny nibbled on the last set 🐰. I set up a small couch with the floor cushions, added some throw pillows AND BAM! Wondering what that black fence thing is in the background? That’s my DIY bunny fence. I can easily pull it out and pin him on the patio for a little bit of fresh air and exercise. Normally he stays out here during the day, getting some much needed exercise and fresh air. I even make him cardboard box houses to play in (OK so he doesn’t look happy – trust me he just has RBF). 🤷🏻‍♀️♥️🐰

So that’s kind of it. I now have this incredible zen-like work space. Especially that I have been sick, this is my sitting space to get some much needed fresh air. OH and space for my cacti collection (see below)….now that I have a bit more space….I think it’s time for another trip to the Florida Cactus Company – Check out my article about them here.

What’s your zen space look like? Do you have a little reading nook or hiding space away from the kids? I’d like to hear about thembelow!

Healthy Living : Save Money & Eat Better at Aldi

Grocery Shopping- Aldi Adventures

Grocery shopping can be expensive and time consuming. My husband Andrew and I have really perfected our grocery shopping routine over the years. As I have said before, both Andrew and I work the 8-5 life so it easy to get into a routine of cooking and cleaning. Our normal Monday through Friday includes a crock-pot or quick dinner, easy to-go breakfast and a pre-packed lunch. Andrew and I try to grocery shop either Friday or Saturday evening to avoid the crowds and we normally pick up a #treatyoself dinner on the way home (let’s be honest – it’s most always Chipotle)

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There are several things to remember when grocery shopping

  1. Keep it simple – fresh or frozen veggies, fresh or frozen fruit, chicken or turkey and brown rice.
  2. Go with a list – you do not need to make a new dish every day of every week. Know what your staples dishes are for each week (turkey chili, turkey tacos, grilled chicken and veggies)
  3. Don’t go hungry – you probably have heard this one before. But do not go hungry grocery shopping; you will just end up throwing every treat into your cart you come across.1-Gwb0y5RD8bUyUFq_tVhvFgWe normally shop at Aldi! Surprisingly Aldi is quickly surpassing even Wholefoods when it comes to being the healthiest grocery store chain. I know it can be kind of overwhelming going into an Aldi, below are some tips and tricks on making the transition easier:
  1. Bring your own bags – Aldi charges you for each bag you use, just bring your reusable bags (the environment thanks you!)
  2. Bring a quarter – you will need this to check out a shopping cart
  3. Go isle by isle – don’t be shocked by the prices! THEY ARE FOR REAL!

My husband and I used to solely shop at Publix with our BOGO coupons. We normally spend close to $150 a week easy on groceries. Using BOGO coupons for things we actually didn’t need in the first place? I guess that’s the gimmick! When we swapped to shopping at Aldi instead, we were able to get enough food for dinners, breakfasts, lunches, deserts and even pick fresh food up for Buddy (our bunny) for around $50 (FOR REAL). We cut our grocery spending from $150 to less than $50! We even swapped from generic food to mostly organic with no added cost!

Just as an example – our kids, Tinsel the dog and Buddy the bunny LOVE carrots. Shopping at Publix we could only afford to pick up a single $4 bag of carrots for them every week which was never enough (there would be riots). At Aldi an organic bag of carrots costs us $1.50! $1.50!!!! (CARROTS FOR EVERYONE!)

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Our breakfasts 

  1. Frozen, organic wheat waffles with fresh fruit depending on the season
  2. Granola or cereal with fresh fruit (my addiction right now is Raisin Bran)
  3. On even busier short mornings I just grab a granola bar and a banana
  4. Greek yogurt (59 cents!!) and fresh, organic fruit

Our dinners 

  1. Crock-pot chicken chili (you can make this with any meat, even turkey!) This is our go to Monday meal – because Monday’s suck and no one wants to cook
  2. Grilled chicken, veggies and rice is our go-to dinner almost every night. It’s easy to pop two chicken breasts in the oven for thirty minutes while I take a shower or an easy thirty minute living room work out.
  3. Crock-pot turkey tacos – we let the ground turkey sit in the crock-pot all day with spices. When we get home we scoop it out onto wheat tortillas or directly onto iceberg lettuce.

Our Lunches 

  1. Left overs – straight up left over food from dinners (can’t get easier than that!)
  2. My other easy go-to is two hard boiled eggs, fresh fruit and veggie juice (you can get the off-brand Naked Vegetable juice at Aldi; $3 for a half gallon!!)

The good stuff (life is ALWAYS better with chocolate)

  1. Just plain chocolate milk – that’s my go-to desert before bed. Skim milk and a squirt of Hershey syrup to satisfy my sweet tooth!
  2. Aldi will normally have special buys like dark chocolate covered cranberries and blueberries too

Did I mention wine? OH YES. Aldi has an incredible selection of wine for less than $3 per bottle.

Our Snacks

  1. Fresh organic fruit – apples, little oranges, bananas peaches (basically anything in season)
  2. Fresh organic veggies – carrots, peppers dipped in humus
  3. Frozen fruit bars – Aldi carries Organic Coconut Creme bars and they are to die for!
  4. Cheeses – Aldi has a unbelievable cheese selection, fresh Parmesan and specialty buys each week (Cheese, crackers and wine. What more do you need?)
  5. What I’m currently obsessed with? (No judgement) Kids’ squeezable apple sauce packs. Completely organic, no sugar added, apples and mixed fruit! YUM.

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You really should not be spending more than $75 on groceries for two every week. You work hard for your money, don’t waste it! A lot of people complain that eating healthy is expensive, but as I’ve shown you here it can be really affordable! Do your research, make a list and go for it! I would love to hear your tips, tricks and love for Aldi below!

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Exploring the Orlando Neighborhood : Lukas Nursery & Butterfly Encounter

Summers are brutal in Florida. Each year summer rolls around, I fill our weekends with indoor activities. We love to fill up on popcorn at the movies, wander through art museums or just stay inside and watch Netflix all day but this year I wanted something a little more! With some quick research on fun things to do in Orlando, this little family-run nursery popped up and I immediately put it on our summer bucket list.

Tucked away in Ovideo, Florida hides a small gem called Lukas Nursery & Butterfly Encounter. This little nursery is just under 45 minutes away from down town Orlando. The farm consists of two separate sections a the Butterfly Encounter Greenhouse and a larger farm house filled to the brim with pots and plants.

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Pull into their gravel parking lot, park towards the butterfly sign pointing to the Butterfly Encounter and follow the signs into the gift shop. Just $12 for admission per person and you have access to two small greenhouses filled with butterflies and just-hatched quails.

(YES YOU HEARD ME – BABY QUAILS)

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It’s kind of kitschy – There’s meditation music in the background, odd half-broken lawn ornaments and birds pecking at your feet. But it’s kind of beautiful in it’s own way too.  In the second greenhouse, inside the small enclosure you can feed the small butterflies nectar. (TBH I was kind of creeped out by the butterflies, but my husband loved them)

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After visiting with the butterflies and birds, we headed straight for the garden side of Lukas. Even if you are not here to purchase plants or pots, make sure to wander in and out of their farm! They have hidden statues throughout their property – like this big guy (the statue – not my husband).

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If you are cacti obsessed like I am, take a look inside their even smaller green house out back. Even though the Florida Cactus Company has better prices on cacti, Lukas is not small on charm.

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Overall, Lukas Nursery is a perfect on a warm summer weekend. You can spend hours wandering in their butterfly greenhouse or exploring their property taking Instagram worth selfies.

If you are looking for a cute weekend day trip, this is the place to go!

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Exploring the Orlando Neighborhood : Sweetfield Farms!

In Florida we don’t normally have a lot of seasons to look forward to. There’s hot, there’s hotter and there’s wet. But there are some beautiful months and every Floridian knows to get out and enjoy the weather why you can! Each April and May there is a quaint little farm called Sweetfield’s Farms and it opens up a sunflower maze (you heard me right a SUNFLOWER MAZE!).

Check out their site here!

About an hour drive from Orlando, Sweetfield’s opens up around 9:00am and you really want to get there early! There are times where the City Police step in to cut off traffic and even have you park in over flow “waiting” parking. Getting there early allows you to easily check in and see everything before crowds really start to form. Tickets start at $10 per adult and $8 for children.

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As soon as you reach the edge of the farm drive way, you will start to see the sunflower field. The sunflowers seem to stretch for miles and reach clear over six feet. The police and staff will direct you to park directly on the field and have you follow the crowds toward the entrance to the farm. Check in is simple and painless. They even accept credit cards!

Directly ahead of you is the farm store; filled with delicious treats, fresh produce and trinkets. We normally head right and avoid the store all together (you will walk out of the store to exit). Restrooms will be on your right and are actually quite nice for porta-potty’s! Following the path through to the left, the farm fields will open up. Ahead there is a petting zoo, playground, tractor ride, you-pick produce, sunflower maze, a homemade lemonade stand and depending on the season there will be kettle corn! You can basically spend an entire day at this farm and only cusp the surface of the fun activities!

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April and may can be quiet warm, I dressed in jeans a flowy tank top and a large floppy hat. I made sure to cover both myself and husband in sunscreen and bug spray! (You never know with Florida weather) Of course never forget your camera!

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Although there were many actives to do, I had my eye on the prize! We picked up lemonade and then headed straight for the maze! We were handed a small sheet of paper with questions that were matched to numbered poles throughout the maze. You answer the questions and make a left or right depending on the answer on the sheet. If you answered the question correctly you would end up at another question pole. The entire maze took us about an hour, but we were grateful that we got drinks before we started.  The sunflowers towered over top of the maze blocking out most of the light, yet it was still really warm.

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For lunch, the farm allows you to bring a cooler in with drinks and food or purchase food from  them. You can enjoy your lunch beneath large oaks covered in Spanish moss. If you have the means to, stop and pick up a slice of their famous wood grilled pizza for lunch!

When the season finally changes from summer to fall, Sweetfield’s Farm turns into the most delightful pumpkin patch. Including the same kettle corn, petting zoo, playground, tractor ride and you-pick produce. But turning into a Corn Maze and serving up the BEST fresh squeeze apple cider. Sweetfield’s Farm is the quintessential family day trip. While driving from Orlando to Sweetfield’s Farm, I also always stop at Lake Mary’s you-pick blueberry farm; check this article out here too! (They make homemade cheesecake blueberry ice cream….I literally dream about it every year)

Let me know if you have any questions or comments! I want to hear about your adventures below