Crop Tops & Kale http://www.croptopsandkale.com Chase feeling good. Wed, 27 May 2015 02:27:28 +0000 en-US hourly 1 On Being Busy http://www.croptopsandkale.com/on-being-busy/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/on-being-busy/#comments Wed, 27 May 2015 02:23:09 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3204 I just listened to a chapter of We Learn Nothing by Tim Kreider and I cannot wait to read the rest of the book on my honeymoon now. The chapter was entitled “Lazy” and it spoke directly to me about exactly… Continue Reading

The post On Being Busy appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
busy

I just listened to a chapter of We Learn Nothing by Tim Kreider and I cannot wait to read the rest of the book on my honeymoon now.

The chapter was entitled “Lazy” and it spoke directly to me about exactly where I am today, and where I think we all are, to some degree.

More importantly though, it spoke to something I’ve been trying to articulate a real need for in my life for quite some time now. It’s what made the news of our delayed, cross-country, honeymoon adventure so (dramatically) hard to bear.

Tim Kreider is suggesting that we should all be a bit more lazy, actually. He believes that taking time out of life once in a while or even (gasp) every day, might actually lead to greater accomplishment and contribution. That is music to my ears, friends, because I am 100% sick and tired of  being ‘busy’.

I need some time and space to collect my damn self. And I’m serious about that. I don’t care how ‘self-indulgent’ or ‘unrealistic’ or ‘must be nice’ it sounds.

I believe that being busy has been stunting my growth and potential (all of our potential) for a while now and I’m over it. Everybody I know is so freaking busy and important, especially in New York. But what are we so busy doing? Who are we actually important to?

We’re so busy being busy that we’ve grown uncomfortable with actual alone, unscheduled time, and with really relaxing. And the lack of relaxation, the lack of time to truly disconnect and give our brains time to reboot, is taking a toll. We’re more depressed and anxious and addicted and drugged up and neurotic than ever.

We drink or smoke, exercise or play games on our phones, listen to podcasts or take classes, go shopping or pack our schedules with shit we don’t really want to do, all to avoid being still and silent and alone and disconnected.

Silence and stillness leave us uncomfortable. We hate what bubbles up when we give it time to. We can’t even sit down for five minutes a day and do nothing.

I watch people around me with kids and it’s even worse. When I hear about how busy they are, it makes me not want to have them. Between soccer and tutors and school and chorus and band and dance classes and shit, the poor kids have no time play in the dirt. And I really think that that’s horrible, because playing in the dirt is important.

It’s made me wonder lately what all this busyness is really bringing to our lives. The short answer, in my most humble opinion, is that it’s bringing us anxiety.

I literally thought I was going to die of Ebola last fall. I’m not joking.

I had more than one or two anxiety attacks about it. I’m talking the shaking, heart racing, walls closing in, shortness of breath, dizziness, numbness of limbs, cold sweats, blurred vision kind of anxiety attacks. For one entire evening I cried on the couch and shook while Joel watched rather helplessly (and possibly contemplated asking for this ring back).

My brother texted me to ask if I checked my shoes for Ebola. For the record, still not funny.

The chances of my death by  Ebola were quite small, I probably had a better chance of dying from the flu but, if you have anxiety, you know that statistics rarely help when facing the impending doom in your mind.

The funnier thing (curious funny, not like, funny ha-ha), is that although my brother found my anxiety a bit amusing, I know for a fact that I was not the only one.

I know for a fact that more than a handful of my friends had similiar upticks in their usual, day-to-day, generalized anxiety around this isolated, worldwide event. The key word here being “usual”.

I don’t think that is a symptom of having friends as batshit crazy as I am. I think it’s a symptom of a greater issue in all of our lives, and that issue, is being busy.

It would be one thing if we could admit that this busyness was self-imposed. If we could admit that we’re actually not all that busy and that we just like to do shit so we can say we are because not being busy must mean you’re not actually all that important, right? You don’t have much going on.

But most of the stuff we are busy with doesn’t actually add that much value to our lives, or the lives of other citizens of humanity, right?

Most of us are not trying to cure cancer, or erradicate Malaria or broker world peace. Most of us are not rehabiliting veterans or fixing logistics issues that leave so many hungry in a country where 40% of our food supply goes uneaten.

Most of us are not social workers slaving tirelessly to help other people out of real-life, real-time, horrible situations. Most of us are not heart surgeons being paged in an emergency.

Most of us are selling ad space, or selling something for that matter, or we’re building software or social media networks, or consulting, or investing, or designing, or manufacturing something, or we’re working in offices where the bottom line is really just about making rich people richer or worse, writing blog posts while you’re supposed to be busy helping rich people get richer. Like this gal over here.

I’m not saying that these things aren’t important. I’m not saying we should all quit our jobs or shun society as a whole. The things we all do are important. We all need to support ourselves. We all need a way to make sure we have money every day and some of us might even like the work we do a whole lot, but do we really need to be so damn busy doing it?

The bottom line is that we’re not that freaking busy and our work is not that freaking important and we’re really just making ourselves sick over it.

Most of us are just busy being busy because we choose to be, and what I’m saying is that we can actually choose not to be if we wanted to. What would that be like? I’m not sure we even realize the inspiration, genius and stamina we might find in ourselves if we decided to make that choice more often.

The post On Being Busy appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/on-being-busy/feed/ 0
The Best Thing I Did For My Health and How You Can Do it Too http://www.croptopsandkale.com/the-best-thing-i-did-for-my-health-and-how-you-can-do-it-too/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/the-best-thing-i-did-for-my-health-and-how-you-can-do-it-too/#comments Tue, 26 May 2015 21:19:51 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3205 I was going to write about something else today, but then I read this article. To summarize it for you real quick, 61 percent of the food Americans buy is highly processed. That amounts to about 1,000 calories in the… Continue Reading

The post The Best Thing I Did For My Health and How You Can Do it Too appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
I was going to write about something else today, but then I read this article.

To summarize it for you real quick, 61 percent of the food Americans buy is highly processed. That amounts to about 1,000 calories in the average daily intake, with refined breads, grain-based desserts, sugary sodas, juices and energy drinks weighing in as top picks.

Whoa. 61 percent.

I guess it’s not hard to believe with Lean Cuisines, 100 calorie packs and all the other garbage out there, but makes you think for a second, doesn’t it? I wonder how we’d collectively feel if it was reversed: if 61% of our diet was unprocessed.

I’m not going to rant here, because sometimes I think I bring this up too often. But I will say that hands down the single most effective change I’ve made is to limit processed food. The choice has had a significant impact on my health, from weight loss and clearer skin, to confidence and a sharper mind.

Give it a shot. Why not, right?

… Oh wait, there are actually several reasons not to.

If we walk around the grocery store, it’s not spinach that catches our attention. It’s advertising from the big guys with the big bucks telling us we can’t live without their processed products. Then there’s having to actually cook the stuff, as opposed to grabbing a box of granola bars and calling it breakfast for the week. Let’s not forget that a bag of chia seeds will run us about $15, when we can just buy a frozen dinner for $5.99. Organic? Lol.

It can be tough to eat whole foods. But if you’re going to invest in anything in terms of time, energy and money, it may as well be your health, right?

I did a little Googlin’ and rounded up some tidbits I hope you find helpful. If you want to talk more about how to cut out processed foods, leave a comment for me below. This is one of my fave topics of all time, so don’t be shy.

For grocery shopping (via Greatist)

cookinghealthy

For quick, healthy dinners (via Women’s Health)

womenshealth

For blending a smoothie (via Lexi’s Clean Kitchen)

smoothie

For salad combos (via Prevention)

prevention

For DIY salad dressing (via Kath Eats Real Food)

saladdressing

For cooking grains (via PopSugar)

grains

For homemade hummus (via Shape)

hummus

The post The Best Thing I Did For My Health and How You Can Do it Too appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/the-best-thing-i-did-for-my-health-and-how-you-can-do-it-too/feed/ 0
Weekend Reads http://www.croptopsandkale.com/weekend-reads-13/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/weekend-reads-13/#comments Fri, 22 May 2015 17:21:25 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3189 Can I get a slow clap for the holiday weekend? It’s off to a beautiful, sunny start here in NYC and we couldn’t be happier to welcome back our old pal, Summer. I sure hope you get outside over the… Continue Reading

The post Weekend Reads appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
roasted-potato-salad-2

via With Food + Love

Can I get a slow clap for the holiday weekend? It’s off to a beautiful, sunny start here in NYC and we couldn’t be happier to welcome back our old pal, Summer.

I sure hope you get outside over the next three days, but for some down time, here’s what we’re reading:

So many thoughts on this one, so little room to share. Like many other New Yorkers, I’m fascinated by the uber rich bubble residing between 65th and 95th on Manhattan’s Upper East Side (ahem, west of Lexington Avenue). This NY Times piece wasn’t shocking … until the author dropped the “wife bonus” bomb. So many thoughts, so many thoughts.

I should have known when D$ shared this video with a corresponding “My heart can’t handle this” caption, that it would end in sobfest 2015. 5-year-old Miles Scott is in remission from leukemia, and Batkid Begins documents his Make-A-Wish dream to be his favorite superhero for a day. It premiers June 26th and lawdy, the trailer is a tear jerker.

Let’s talk about this genius travel hack for a sec. “Throwaway ticketing” is a little-known secret, and apparently a huge money saver, that airlines don’t want us to know about. In this Business Insider feature, cheap travel expert Scott Keyes mentions a website called Skiplagged. I’m not saying I spent an hour yesterday booking theoretical flights just to see what they would cost, but I’m not saying I didn’t.

Sticking with the travel theme, this CNN article makes me very happy. Thanks to the release of “Wild” by Cheryl Strayed, more and more women are hitting the great outdoors in search of adventure. Here, two women share how traveling changed their lives, and it’s got a lot more to do with self acceptance and empowerment than lacing up the hiking boots.

Couldn’t leave you without a Memorial Day recipe now, could I? This Roasted Potato Salad from With Food + Love may be just the ticket. Super easy, and a healthier upgrade from the classic, mayonnaise-laden BBQ dish.

Hope you kick off Summer in style this weekend, my friends!

The post Weekend Reads appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/weekend-reads-13/feed/ 0
Healthy Coffee Smoothie with DRINKmaple http://www.croptopsandkale.com/healthy-coffee-smoothie-with-drinkmaple/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/healthy-coffee-smoothie-with-drinkmaple/#comments Tue, 19 May 2015 20:37:40 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3131 I used to dread Sundays. This horrible, nauseating fear would creep up around noon, when I’d start counting down the hours to looming deadlines. Working over weekends was pretty much par for the course at my previous job, which I… Continue Reading

The post Healthy Coffee Smoothie with DRINKmaple appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
I used to dread Sundays. This horrible, nauseating fear would creep up around noon, when I’d start counting down the hours to looming deadlines. Working over weekends was pretty much par for the course at my previous job, which I never really questioned. “If everyone’s working it’s not so bad, right? This is the norm.”

I’ll spare you a rant, you can read how that saga ended here. But quick word of advice? Anytime you find yourself in the majority and it doesn’t necessarily feel good, it’s time to reflect and reevaluate.

Anyway, now I sort of love Sundays. I take Luce to the park then put on some jazz, make a big breakfast and read or write (funny how I don’t mind working on the weekend when it’s work I’m digging). Nothing beats a slow Sunday morning with a couple cups of coffee.

I am admittedly pretty boring when it comes to coffee. I don’t have a french press or an espresso machine or anything fun, and I drink it black. But on the weekends it’s nice to feel a little fancy, yes? I was craving a smoothie on Sunday, so when I saw a recipe for this one made with cold brew coffee and maple water I just hadta have it.

IMG_5624

Want five simple steps to feeling really good? Download our free Feel Good Formula.

Hang on. Maple water?

Yes, maple water. Apparently it’s the new coconut water. I’m a fan of coconut water for the natural hydration, but maple water had me at half the sugar. I was intrigued. The kind folks at DRINKmaple sent us a few samples to try and filled us in on the facts:

  • Contains one single ingredient: maple sap
  • Obtained by sustainably tapping the trunks of American-grown maple trees on USDA-certified organic family-run farms in Vermont
  • Contains 46 naturally occurring vitamins, minerals, polyphenols, antioxidants and prebiotics
  • Naturally low in sugar, calories, gluten-free, dairy-free, vegan and non-GMO
  • Contains more manganese than may be found in a cup of kale, an important mineral for bone health, calcium absorption, thyroid function, blood sugar regulation, immune function and the metabolism of fats and carbohydrates

Okay, CTK-approved on the nutrition front. But how does it taste? Not too unlike coconut water, but I’d argue better. It’s sweet with a hint of maple, but really subtle. Refreshing, but not overpowering. I’m a fan.

So back to the smoothie; DRINKmaple included a recipe on the box, and I threw in a banana because potassium, right? Oh man guys, this is sooooo good you’re going to love it. Here’s what to blend.

Maple Coffee Smoothie

Ingredients

One cup DRINKmaple

One cup cold brew coffee (I used Gradys, but any type of coffee, cold brew or not, would work here)

One frozen banana

One teaspoon pure maple syrup

One teaspoon vanilla extract

One tablespoon chia seeds

Method

Blend away!

You can buy DRINKmaple products online here, or locate a store here. They’re currently available at nearly 800 stores throughout the Northeast, New York City, and Greater New York area ranging from Whole Foods Market to independent fitness studios and small health foods stores. In July 2015, following sap season (yep, that’s a thing), they plan to expand distribution to the Southeast, including Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana and Arkansas. The product will soon be found in over 1,000 stores, so you can get your DRINKmaple on all over the place.

The post Healthy Coffee Smoothie with DRINKmaple appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/healthy-coffee-smoothie-with-drinkmaple/feed/ 0
Instant Apartment Upgrades on Any Budget http://www.croptopsandkale.com/guest-post-instant-apartment-upgrades-on-any-budget/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/guest-post-instant-apartment-upgrades-on-any-budget/#comments Tue, 19 May 2015 19:41:27 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3139 Hi friends, D-Money here and we have a CTK Guest Post for you today! I’d like to introduce you to our favorite new design blogger, Courtney of Sunday’s Arrow. She’s here to give you some killer tips for creating a home… Continue Reading

The post Instant Apartment Upgrades on Any Budget appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
Hi friends, D-Money here and we have a CTK Guest Post for you today! I’d like to introduce you to our favorite new design blogger, Courtney of Sunday’s Arrow.

She’s here to give you some killer tips for creating a home that feels really good … even in a tiny, expensive, NYC apartment and even on a tiny, not-so-expensive budget.

I mean, that’s a challenge for all of us, right? We want our homes to feel like homes but, we don’t really want to invest the time and money to get them there, since we’re probably leaving soon anyway….

Take it away Courtney.

Courtney

Hi friends!

Let’s face it, renting an apartment can be such a temporary thing, especially here in NYC. Your spacial needs, rent increases and roommate situation (or significant other for that matter) can change in a New York Minute.

Between the 12-month leases, outdated parquet floors, boring white walls and landlord restrictions, taking the time to decorate might not feel like it’s worth the trouble.

But I love a good challenge and I’m a big believer in making your space feel personal. After all, you’re probably paying a pretty penny to live there, so why not make it a beautiful reflection of you, a place that feels good to come home to, even if it is temporary?

Here are my top four, go-to tips for instantly upgrading any apartment without breaking the bank.

#1. Pillows, pillows, pillows

patternedpillowsIMAGE

If you’ve visited my blog, it’s easy to see that I am obsessed with pillows. They are by far my favorite, quick and affordable way to add personality to any room. Pillows and covers are generally sold separately, which can be expensive but, investing in a set of core pillows can go a long way. Once you have them, you can then snag covers rather inexpensively and switch them out based on your mood, the season or whenever you get bored.

#2. Frames

framesIMAGE (1)

Sometimes painting your walls isn’t an option, or it might not be worth it when you’re renting (especially if you’ll just have to paint the walls back before you move). Gallery walls are a great alternative. They are a perfect way to display your favorite photographs, artwork or prints, and will instantly make a room feel more inviting and personal.

Frames and prints don’t have to be expensive either. I love to scour Society6 for original artwork at very affordable prices, visit thrift shops for unique prints and frames, and to print my own photographs, especially from my travels. (To learn more about different ways to display travel photos throughout your home, check out my post here.)

Gallery walls can seem like a big undertaking, but if you’re patient and embrace the curation process, the results can be very rewarding … and beautiful!

#3. DIY Artwork

DIYartworkIMAGE

I love art. I love art I can’t afford.  And when I moved into my last apartment, I had a big space above my bed that needed to be filled. I couldn’t find any affordable artwork I liked and I didn’t have the budget to splurge. With some help and inspiration from my Pinterest board, I made my own. Don’t worry, your last name doesn’t have to be Picasso for this one (I seriously just painted lines!). All it takes is a vision, a white canvas, some acrylic paint, a brush and some masking tape. With the total budget of $40, I was pretty happy with the result and didn’t feel so bad knowing it might not work in my next place!

#4. Greenery

greeneryIMAGE

One of the best ways to liven up any space (literally) is by adding some greenery.

Potted plants are a naturally beautiful and healthy way to create a calming environment that will automatically enhance any room or mood!

Now I know what you’re thinking “but I’ll kill them!” and I can totally relate, but I’ve learned you don’t need a green thumb to own plants, you just need to find the right plant match for you.

For me, because of my busy lifestyle, plants that are low maintenance, like cacti and succulents, have become my best friends. And the best part is picking out a cute little home for these plants to live in.

I gravitate toward painted or geometric, ceramic planters and I love to mix and match, especially with glass and wood. Etsy is a great resource for affordable and one-of-a-kind planters, so check out some of my favorites here. And if you’re missing a green thumb like me, take this short quiz from Better Homes & Gardens to find your best indoor plant match.

The instant upgrades don’t have to end here, folks.  

A few of my other favorite ways to add character to my space include:

  • changing out hardware on cabinets, doors, and light switch covers
  • layering textures in the form of rugs and throws
  • and making sure that the lighting is just right

I would love to hear what ideas you all have too! How do you make your space more personal and inviting? Leave a comment below!

Product Sources: Nate Berkus Metallic Triangle Decorative Pillow || John Robshaw Textiles Diwan Decorative Pillow || Pottery Barn Kilim Pillow Cover || Nate Berkus Metallic Stud Pillow || Ikea Black Frame || Bed Bath & Beyond Gallery 7-Piece Frame Set || Pier1 Wooden Gallery Frames || Serena Lily Woven Raffia Frames || Society6 Framed Art Print || Anthropologie Blocked Planter || Dana Bechert Shoulder Planter || Wapa Studio Colorful Porcelain Planters

Main Image sources: Pinterest

If you’re interested in following Courtney for more design inspo, check her out on social media here:

Instagram: @sundaysarrow

Pinterest: www.pinterest.com/sundaysarrow

Twitter: @sundaysarrow

Facebook: www.facebook.com/sundaysarrow

The post Instant Apartment Upgrades on Any Budget appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/guest-post-instant-apartment-upgrades-on-any-budget/feed/ 0
5 Weight Loss Mistakes to Avoid http://www.croptopsandkale.com/5-weightloss-mistakes-to-avoid-this-bikini-season/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/5-weightloss-mistakes-to-avoid-this-bikini-season/#comments Thu, 14 May 2015 17:47:55 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3111 Is everybody ready for bikini season!? Ugh. If I see one more ad for getting a ‘bikini body’ I’m going to lose it. What about a one-piece body? I’m really into one-pieces lately. Or what about a high waisted two-piece… Continue Reading

The post 5 Weight Loss Mistakes to Avoid appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
weight loss mistakes

Is everybody ready for bikini season!?

Ugh. If I see one more ad for getting a ‘bikini body’ I’m going to lose it. What about a one-piece body? I’m really into one-pieces lately. Or what about a high waisted two-piece body? Huh? What about that?!

I’ve been avoiding the topic of weight loss around these parts because, to be honest, sometimes I feel conflicted about it. Who am I to talk about positive body image and then also give you weight loss tips? Feels shitty to me, a conflict of interest.

However, I do know that a lot of women are struggling with it. Their own conflict of interest being that they want to lose weight and feel good in their own skin but, they also want to just live their life and eat pizza.

And being stuck in a place where you want to lose weight but just can’t. seem. to. do. it., is a terrible place to be. It can make us feel like hopeless failures doomed to a life of feeling self-conscious and never enjoying ourselves, a life getting pushed in the pool with our t-shirts on. We just want to sit down in jeans and a t-shirt, on a  couch, and not have to hold a pillow. Is that so much to f’in ask!?

I know. I’ve been there many times. Trust me.

We try to be good all day and then we blow it once we get home… because we’re starving.

Or we are good all week, working out and ‘eating right’, and then Thursday happy hour comes around and the wheels come off. You totally lose your shit. You find yourself sitting at your desk on Monday morning feeling like a bloated failure and vowing to be better this time. Today is the day that you start being that perfect version of yourself that’s in your head, the one you remember being from the last time you felt skinny.

I seriously, seriously get it. And I want to share a few mistakes that I have made over and over and over again that got me nowhere. Mistakes that if you can manage to avoid, you just might be able to get off that damn hamster wheel for good.

#1. Calling yourself fat.

Seriously, stop it. Every time you call yourself fat, imagine calling a six year old girl fat. Would you call a six year old girl fat? No, you wouldn’t, unless of course, you’re a monster.  And you’re not a fat monster. You’re beautiful.

And honestly, has calling yourself fat, putting yourself down and berating yourself ever actually lead to weight loss? No. It has not. So maybe stop doing it and see what happens then. Maybe start telling yourself how skinny you’re feeling, even if you’re not. Just keep telling yourself you are. Most of our life experience happens inside our own heads anyway, so why not feel skinny up there?

#2. Eating low fat and low calorie food.

Eating low fat and low calorie is just so 90s. Don’t do that. Your body needs fat. Fat is not the enemy. Your body needs calories, calories are not the enemy. Eating exclusively low-fat, low-calorie is exactly what makes the wheels fall off at the end of the day/week/diet. Fat is really satiating, so when we don’t eat it, we are hungry.

Throw a whole avocado into your daily routine, add some nut butter to your smoothie, have an omelette with cheese, you’ll actually start feeling full. You won’t feel like eating all. of. the. time.

#3. Punishing yourself with exercise.

Do you really love that crushing boot camp? Or do you just feel like you should be doing it because you ate too much? This is a very important distinction to make. Only you know if you’re being honest with yourself.

I don’t know about you but, when I force myself to exercise when I don’t really feel like it, I wind up feeling like crap and eating more. I’m not advocating a sedentary lifestyle here but, if you’re really feeling ‘fat’, forcing yourself to workout is just punishment, and punishing exercise isn’t the answer. It’s stressful and more stress is the opposite of what you want.

Try just relaxing for a night, try just having a very light dinner, like a soup, and going to bed early. Do some stretching. Be easy on yourself, relax.

#4. Trying to be perfect.

Another conflict I have is that I’ve done a few cleanses and, when adhered to, they really can make you feel amazing and shed pounds quickly as a side effect. I’m talking ‘cleanses’ that include actual food though, not juice cleanses.

If you cut out caffeine, sugar, alcohol, gluten, dairy, soy, corn, peanuts, and processed foods, you’re likely going to feel amazing after a few days and lose weight. But, is that really going to be realistic for your life? Is that really how you want to live your life? Trying to eat perfectly?

Instead, my suggestion is to focus on just a couple of bigger impact changes like, drinking more water or cutting out processed foods entirely. The margin for error is quite large when we’re trying to be perfect.

#5. Obsessing.

I know it’s easy to feel hopeless and disgusted with yourself, and I have gone through phases of obsessing for sure but, I’ve found the best thing to do wen we’re in that place, is just some light, mental, crazy-combating work.

Stop obsessing and mentally re-frame the situation. Tell yourself that it’s all fine, that you’re literally the only person who is noticing your weight to begin with and that this struggle, is mostly in your head.

Tell yourself you’re eating healthy and taking care of yourself and because of that, you’re effortlessly moving towards your ideal weight. The weight loss you’re after is not going to happen overnight, but it is going to happen. You just have to keep up the good work of taking care of yourself.

I know, it sounds crazy but, so does obsessing about our weight. Just try it. Try talking to yourself like you would talk to your best friend who’s having a meltdown over it. What would you say to her? Say that to yourself, as many times as it takes.

Once I was able to correct these mistakes, I was actually able to start losing weight.

The funny thing is though, I started to feel really good, long before the scale moved. If you’re struggling to lose weight, avoiding these mistakes can go a long way to gaining some momentum. Besides, if the old weight loss paradigm was going to work for you, wouldn’t it have started to work by now?

Love you.

The post 5 Weight Loss Mistakes to Avoid appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/5-weightloss-mistakes-to-avoid-this-bikini-season/feed/ 0
Everything You Need to Know About Changing Your Name http://www.croptopsandkale.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-changing-your-name/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-changing-your-name/#comments Wed, 13 May 2015 21:41:53 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3099 Not too long ago I made boo time official and married my best friend! Cliche but, I had to say it. Bryan and I have been in a long-distance relationship since we started dating, as I’m American and he’s Canadian. We knew that… Continue Reading

The post Everything You Need to Know About Changing Your Name appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
Not too long ago I made boo time official and married my best friend! :) Cliche but, I had to say it.

BooTime <3

BooTime <3

Bryan and I have been in a long-distance relationship since we started dating, as I’m American and he’s Canadian. We knew that in order to be together one of us was going to have to relocate to a new country. After many months of long FaceTime chats, we agreed that I would be the one to move North to Montreal.

On this new adventure I’ll be getting the opportunity to live abroad, learn a new language, experience new cultures (sugar shacks anyone?), and be in a cool, fun city with Bryan. Bonus! We also get to go through a LOT of bureaucratic processes. Bureaucratic processes are not fun, and when entrenched in them they can really weigh you down.

One process in particular took a little more out of me than I anticipated. We had talked a lot about whether or not I was going to change my name, and I knew that I wanted to, but I was struggling with WHEN to do it. I originally planned to make the change after our immigration process was complete so that we didn’t waste time, but no. I decided to change my name last minute (read: three days) before we got our marriage license.

This is how I make major life decisions, people.

It’s funny, the thought of changing my name didn’t bother me at all, until the day before I needed to decide. I had thought “It’s just my name! No big deal! I’m still me!” But I felt something deeper. I felt like I was closing the chapter on my Gallagher self and starting a new one as a Magsisi.

After I decided yes on the name change, I consulted the interwebs on what I needed to do. There is a LOT of info out there, and it can be really daunting. If I can provide the brides-to-be with some pointers that make the process less stressful, then that’s a win right? Here goes nothin':

  1. Get your marriage certificate. You’ll likely be getting this in the mail after your marriage license is processed. Keep tabs on this piece of paper. I ordered three extra copies because I wanted to expedite my name change process, but you should be perfectly fine with one.
  2. Add your new last name to your mailbox immediately. I waited to add my new name, and it came back to bite me in the ass. Some important mail was not delivered to me because of it.
  3. Go get your new drivers license. New License = New picture! Check out what you need to bring since each state is different but you’ll need your marriage certificate for this.
  4. Update your passport & passport card. Having an extra copy of my marriage certificate was helpful for this since I knew I wouldn’t have it back for a few weeks. This is something that most people tend to wait to update until it needs to be renewed. Spending an extra $150 on this change wasn’t awesome but #bureacracy is a B.
  5. Bank accounts & credit cards. I had to visit my bank to get my checking account changed over, but for my other accounts I only had to fax them a copy of my marriage certificate to get my name updated. Each bank is different so make sure you check in with your own. Remember to get new checks too!
  6. Inform your company. This was a 3-in-1 deal for me since they updated my 401K, insurance, and paycheck info. I decided to keep my maiden name on emails since it was just easier.
  7. Bills. ugh.
  8. Legal Agreements. Update your will or rental contracts and all that jazz, should you have them.

Some Fun stuff to do next:

  1. Lock down your new email address. Yay you have a clean inbox!
  2. Update your airline mileage accounts. Don’t let those hard-earned miles go to waste.
  3. Monogram some stuff. This isn’t really my style, but I think it’s fun. Why not treat yourself to something after dealing with all this paperwork crap? Use that new name gurl!

It’s going to be a while until everything is in your new name but the important stuff is here. In case you’re more of a checklist type of person, here’s a great asset from the Nest.

Best of luck on your new adventure!

The post Everything You Need to Know About Changing Your Name appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/everything-you-need-to-know-about-changing-your-name/feed/ 2
Healthy Smoothie Bowl Recipe with Pitaya Plus http://www.croptopsandkale.com/healthy-smoothie-bowl-recipe-with-pitaya-plus/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/healthy-smoothie-bowl-recipe-with-pitaya-plus/#comments Tue, 12 May 2015 20:30:47 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3073 Oh man guys, I’ve got a good recipe for you today. This is the prettiest little smoothie bowl I ever did see. Have you tried pitaya? It’s more commonly known as dragon fruit: the bright magenta stuff. It’s delicious and… Continue Reading

The post Healthy Smoothie Bowl Recipe with Pitaya Plus appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
Oh man guys, I’ve got a good recipe for you today. This is the prettiest little smoothie bowl I ever did see.

Have you tried pitaya? It’s more commonly known as dragon fruit: the bright magenta stuff. It’s delicious and energizing, plus loaded with a bunch of goodness like vitamins B and C, magnesium, antioxidants and fiber. The problem is looking at these things and trying to figure out how one is supposed to eat them.

That’s why I was stoked to hear about packs of pitaya that are ready to be blended up and thrown in a smoothie or bowl. How convenient! No fuss, no mess. Thanks to the kind folks over at Pitaya Plus, we got to try these fun little packs and wowza, they’re good. A few facts for ya:

  • USDA Organic, raw, non-GMO verified
  • One ingredient (pitaya, duh)
  • Raw, never heated or pasteurized
  • Active enyzmes
  • Vegan, dairy-free, gluten-free
  • The biggie in my book: no added sugar!

So it gets the CTK stamp of approval for its health benefits, but here’s what really interesting: the social mission behind Pitaya Plus is incredibly empowering. As they explain on their website, they’re out to create new employment opportunities in areas of the world that need it the most. By hiring single mothers in Central America, they enable women to provide food and education to their children. By operating out of a solar-powered factory, they maintain a sustainable, energy-efficient production. By working with farmers directly, they support small, local business, ensure that their fruit is kept clean, and that working conditions are good for everyone involved. Not to mention the fact that they’re out to make the world a little healthier, one pack of pitaya at a time.

They’ve got a whole bunch of delicious recipes on their website that I suggest you check out. I decided to go for something simple this weekend.

image1-1

Want five simple steps to feeling really good? Click to download the free CTK Feel Good Formula.

Pitaya Plus Smoothie Bowl

Ingredients

1 Pitaya Plus Smoothie Pack

1 cup almond milk

1 banana

1 tablespoon chia seeds

Handful of blueberries (or fruit of choice)

1/2 cup of granola (or whatever topping you prefer)

Optional: 1 tablespoon shredded coconut

Method

Blend Pitaya Plus with the banana and almond milk. Put in a bowl and top with chia seeds, berries and granola. That’s it!

The post Healthy Smoothie Bowl Recipe with Pitaya Plus appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/healthy-smoothie-bowl-recipe-with-pitaya-plus/feed/ 4
Our Mission http://www.croptopsandkale.com/our-mission-statement/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/our-mission-statement/#comments Tue, 12 May 2015 18:32:28 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3076 How good can we feel every day? How fulfilled and happy can we be with our lives? These are the two questions that we, over here at Crop Tops & Kale, ask ourselves daily. Answering those questions and coming up with… Continue Reading

The post Our Mission appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
How good can we feel every day?

How fulfilled and happy can we be with our lives?

These are the two questions that we, over here at Crop Tops & Kale, ask ourselves daily.

Answering those questions and coming up with ways to make the answers “really, really good” and “really, really fulfilled and happy” is our mission. It’s what gets us pumped up. It’s what makes us order that third glass of wine so we can keep gabbing on and on about it with each other. It’s what makes us read hundreds of nutrition, wellness and personal development books and then experiment with implementing that information into our daily lives.  It’s what gets BShan in the kitchen and me on my yoga mat.

Why not, right? Why not chase feeling as good as possible with this one little life we’ve got?

You see, we feel that we’ve won what the authors of Half The Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide (Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn) call, ‘the ovarian lottery’. By sheer twist of fate and the alignment of the stars, we were born as the luckiest of the lucky in the world.

As women, we were born into a Western society that affords us the luxuries of not only having our basics needs covered but also having freedom, access to education and quality healthcare and basic human rights. There are millions of our fellow female humans born into this world without those things. We should thank our lucky stars, literally.

And we don’t want to waste it. We feel that the best thing we can do for the world around us is to live inspired, healthy, enthusiastic lives, make lots of money and help others with our time, energy and resources. Going after our own dreams will not only enable us to make a positive impact but, will also inspire others to do the same.

The world needs more happy, healthy women, living inspired, prosperous lives.

And that’s essentially what we are doing here. We are going after our own dreams and creating a community to help you do the same.  We want to inspire you to get healthy and confident in your own skin, live a life that lights you up, and create real wealth, so that you can go out and help others too.

How does that sound? Pretty good, right?

It all starts with feeling good.

The post Our Mission appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/our-mission-statement/feed/ 0
Happy Mother’s Day!! http://www.croptopsandkale.com/happy-mothers-day/ http://www.croptopsandkale.com/happy-mothers-day/#comments Mon, 11 May 2015 01:13:54 +0000 http://www.croptopsandkale.com/?p=3067 Happy Mother’s Day!! We hope you’re having a blast celebrating all the amazing moms out there that bring us joy and love and remind us to take care of ourselves (and eat our veggies). We here at CTK think our… Continue Reading

The post Happy Mother’s Day!! appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
Happy Mother’s Day!!

We hope you’re having a blast celebrating all the amazing moms out there that bring us joy and love and remind us to take care of ourselves (and eat our veggies).

We here at CTK think our moms are pretty hot shit. They are our head cheerleaders, our pillars of strength and the absolute best shoulder to lean on. They inspire us everyday to get outdoors, walk a few extra blocks, experience the world, eat things that make us feel good, and to stay grounded.

Even though we aren’t able to all be together today, know that we love you!

Thanks CTK Moms! 

The post Happy Mother’s Day!! appeared first on Crop Tops & Kale.

]]>
http://www.croptopsandkale.com/happy-mothers-day/feed/ 0