Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Skinny & Company Coconut Facial Oil Review

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Skinny & Company Facial Oil Makeup Remover

Setting off on vacation a few weeks ago I tucked a couple travel-sized 2 oz jars of Skinny Coconut Oil products into my suitcase.  Skinny & Company sent me a few travel-sized products to review, and I agreed to social media (if we liked them) in return.  Asking Liv if she and her friend would give the products a try and perhaps help compose a photo or two (they are instagram styling queens!) I received a "Maybe." in return.  Hence, I was on my own.

However, on my own turned out to be just fine when unpacking some 20 hours later and I realized I hadn't packed my usual makeup remover wipes.  Turning to the Skinny products I chose the Coconut Facial Oil which is said to remove makeup.  And remove makeup it did!

I think for the first time in ages my face was completely makeup free - including those stubborn mascara smudges under my eyes.  Seriously... wow.

Skinny & Company Facial Oil Makeup Remover
Taking a peek at the ingredients brought another wow.  Chemical free, all natural (not natural flavor - but actually real, natural, plant-based ingredients), and it worked.  I'm so sold.

Three products all packed in one little jar, the Facial Oil works as a makeup remover, cleanser and moisturizer.  I think Skinny's site says it best:

"This amazing jar contains some of the most calming essential oils in the world. This facial oil is best used to remove stubborn makeup with ease, then wipe off with a warm cloth. A little goes a long way with all coconut oil products and it has a long shelf life. It will not irritate eyes or skin because just like all Skinny & Co. products, it is not made with any chemicals or preservatives. A great bonus tip is to add this to the tops of the cheekbones or decollete as a light highlight once makeup is applied."

But the real test came some 10 days later when Liv asked if she could use some of my "coconut stuff" as she had used the last of her makeup wipes.  Unfortunately, this was the last I saw of my prized little jar.  However the girls too, are sold, and Olivia's friend returned home to order a jar to spread the Coconut Facial Oil love in college at UC Davis.

The girls say their faces are clearer since they've begun using the Facial Oil and that it works "way" better than other removal products.  In addition, while it is an actual oil, it doesn't make their faces oily - only soft and clean.  Note a little goes a long way!

Researching Skinny & Company, made me even more of a fan.  Products with real ingredients made by real people with real stories, Co-Founders Matt and Luke Geddie create raw alkaline coconut oil products that are changing the face of the food and cosmetics industries.  


Skinny & Company Facial Oil Makeup Remover and Oil Pulling Oil

Skinny and Company also sent me a jar of the Oil Pulling Coconut Oil and now our whole family uses it.  Hard to get onto the pulling bandwagon, it was Skinny's oil enhanced with real peppermint that changed their minds. (The pulling oil leaves your mouth minty fresh while improving overall oral health).  I've been pulling for almost a year and my last dental visit the hygienist mentioned my teeth were cleaner and healthier than ever.  She asked if I had been flossing more (Um.... no).  But I told her about the oil pulling and she said that's most likely what did the trick.  Again...  I'm sold.

So thanks for introducing yourself Skinny & Company.  I'm loving the raw alkaline coconut oil benefits for my whole family including the dog, and the UPS guy is getting used to making regular Skinny & Company deliveries to my house.  Here's to a long and healthy relationship!

Liv Life Note:  Skinny and Company sent me a few sample jars of coconut oil products.  I've since repurchased the facial oil, pulling oil and ordered a jar of the pure coconut oil for cooking (recipes coming).  I was not under obligation to post about the products, however when you find something you love so much you simply want to share!  

Skinny & Co Coconut Oil


Friday, September 23, 2016

Banana Oatmeal Waffles - Vegan (But you'd never know it!)

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Vegan Oatmeal Waffles

Liv:  "Mom... can I have friends sleep over this weekend?"

Me:  "Sure.  Any special requests for breakfast?"

Liv:  "Ya.  They want the same waffles as last time, they loved them.  But they also said they're glad you don't make them eat vegan stuff.  Haha!  I didn't have the heart to tell them the waffles they want are the 'vegan stuff!'"

Many times vegan, or plant based, foods get a bad rap - sometimes deservedly so.  But I always chuckle a bit inside when I make that "weird vegan food" and people don't even know it's missing eggs and dairy.  I love having people gush over dishes and ask for recipes only to be surprised they are eating plant based and they love it.


Vegan Oatmeal Waffles
And these waffles are no different.  Found on our breakfast table more often than not, these oatmeal beauties pair beautifully with a simple drizzle of maple syrup.  Want to dress them up a bit?  Sprinkle with raspberries and a dusting of powdered sugar like we did for the photos.  Or how about a lovely drizzle of Blueberry Maple Syrup?  That will surely do the trick.

This recipe makes 6-7 waffles in my waffle iron (yield may differ based on your waffle iron size, etc - we use a Cuisinart), which gives us breakfast and usually 1-2 left over.  For those we either freeze for super busy mornings, or, better yet turn them into one of my all time favorite things - Waffle PBJs!

~ Waffle PBJ:  Spread 1/2 of the waffle with peanut butter and jam (I like Blueberry Chia), fold in half and toss into a zippy sandwich bag for lunch that will make friends envious ~

But don't wait for weekend to make these beauties!  For busy school nights I set out the dry ingredients the night before, and in the morning mix together the almond milk, banana, and vanilla then add the dry, mix and we're cooking in no time.  Note - they may also be the perfect comfort dinner...

Enjoy the day my friends... balance and love always :)
Vegan Oatmeal Waffles

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Vitality Bowls Superfood Cafe, Carlsbad CA - New Restaurant Review

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Dragon Bowl, Vitality Bowls Carlsbad

Acai, Pitaya... Bowls are all the rage right now with most cities offering numerous choices to fulfill your every desire.  But, the question remains - Are all bowls created equally?  When it comes down to ingredients, no.  They are not.

With brilliant blends and artistic toppings, many bowls appear healthy and appealing, but instead are filled with sorbets, syrups, and artificial sweeteners.  These "healthy" bowls can equate to a dessert in disguise.


Vitality Bowl Superfood Cafe, Carlsbad, CA
Not so at the new Vitality Bowls Superfood Cafe located in the Plaza Paseo Real Center just off of El Camino in Carlsbad, CA (right next to Cineopolis - La Costa).  Owners Divya and Vikas Gupta bring pure, additive-free, superfood (organic when possible) to the table along with a balanced and nourishing vibe.

Quoted from the Carlsbad Patch - "All items on the menu are made to order for each customer and are prepared in a kitchen to avoid cross contamination so customers with food allergies can feel safe about eating at Vitality Bowls. No ingredient fillers such as ice, frozen yogurt, added sugar or artificial preservatives are used, giving the purest taste possible to each menu item."

Hence when Liv and her girlfriend offered to meet me at the new "superfood place" I hopped in the car and beat them to the menu. A chance conversation with Divya made me feel as though I had a new friend, one who is also passionate about not only nutrition, but tasty nutrition.


Take the Dragon Bowl for instance... Blended Pitaya, Mango Juice, Coconut Milk, Bananas, Pineapple, Raspberries and an Immunity Boost is topped with Strawberries, Kiwi, Almonds, Goji Berries, Bee Pollen and Honey.  What's not to love?  Liv's friend Hannah ordered this dish and all three of us gushed over the flavors with the girls proclaiming it one of the best Pitaya Bowls they'd ever had.


Vitality Bowls Superfood Cafe, Carlsbad, CA - The Rehydrator
Liv chose the Tropical Bowl (topped with crunchy granola, bananas, strawberries, coconut shavings and honey) which drew equal proclamations of love, and I found myself craving my choice of the Rehydrator Juice for days following.

Filling out the menu the cafe also offers Panini (might I recommend the Veggie - Mozzarella, Spinach, Sun-Dried Tomatoes, Dijon and Pesto?), Kombucha on tap, and creative Salads.

Located next to Carlsbad's Cineopolis Movie Theater (La Costa), I'm so happy to have a healthy, real food alternative to Pizza and Subs before we head in to see the latest flick.

Real food made by real people, Vitality Bowls has found a few new fans in us.  Thanks Divya for giving me a new happy place in Carlsbad!

Vitality Bowl Superfood Cafe, Carlsbad, CA

Liv Life Note:  Vitality Bowls offered to sponsor us for lunch, however we enjoyed our visit so much we paid for our meal so this post could be unsponsored. Purely my own thoughts and opinions.  We've returned a number of times since our first visit and simply want to share our love!

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Blueberry Lime Detox Cooler

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Blueberry Lime Detox Cooler

Three weeks of vacation - pure, wonderful, indulgent vacation - has left me in somewhat of a food coma and ready for fresh, revitalizing foods.  Which brings me directly to today's Blueberry Lime Cooler recipe.  

Light and refreshing, I've prepared this minty drink for the last three days and have found it an ideal "get me going" drink on sluggish jet lagged mornings.

Filled with antioxidant-rich blueberries, protein and vitamin rich spinach, digestion enhancing mint and a bright squeeze of lime, this cooler is easing by post vacation blues and helping me transition to the slightly chillier end of summer mornings.

Blueberry Lime Detox Cooler

Blueberry Lime Detox Cooler
A get you back on track nutritious drink that sets your morning off in the perfect direction.  Light and refreshing, it's a great way to start the day!

1 cup coconut water
1/2 cup ice
1/2 cup frozen organic blueberries
1 handful organic spinach
1 Tbs oatmeal
1 Tbs goji berries
2-5 leaves organic mint
juice of 1 lime (more if desired)

Place all items into your blender and blend until smooth.  The mint leaves usually bring quite a bit of flavor, so adjust to your taste by using more or less - we use between 3-5 leaves, I love a nice minty drink! 

Add more water if smoothie it too thick.

 
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