Summer Dayz Popsicles

During these hot summer days I find that I’m craving something sweet and cold at the end of day. Let’s make some popsicles!

collage popsciles

 

1. I made a few with fresh strawberries, pureed and pieces.

2. Pimm’s Cups are refreshing.

3. Coconut water is hydrating, so it would make an excellent popsicle.

Party Themes I Gotta Try

I’m always looking for an excuse to throw a party, host friends, or make someone feel special. These ideas would be so much fun.

collage party themes

 

Living in Hong Kong, there is lots of to-and-fro. These invitation are amazing.

Do you have too many books and nothing to read? Me too.

A seriously healthy birthday cake. It’s pretty, but…oh.

And always, treat yo self.

Healthy Living

In the past year, I’ve worked hard to get healthy, add fitness into my life, and cut down on processed foods. In Hong Kong there may be *too* many opportunities to celebrate every day through indulgence, particularly with food and drink. I started a new Instagram account to document my journey of healthy meals, juices and smoothies, and motivation. If you are interested, follow wholefoodsfit herecollage wholefoodsfit

Colorful Summer BBQ

After a whirlwind couple of months with travel, including Singapore last weekend we decided we weren’t quite up to another weekend away. We decided to stay in Hong Kong, enjoy the long weekend (maybe you saw the Dragon Boat on Google), and indulge in a beach and BBQ day. A week late for Memorial Day, but sun, burgers on the grill, corn on the cob and watermelon.

After a fun day at Big Wave Bay, we headed back to our terrace to start the BBQ. We love light, refreshing Pimm’s Cups, so we tried out the Bon Appetit  recipe. We also had white wine {I made a few spritzers, cutting the wine with soda water}, coconut water {hydrating!} and beer.Last Import - 02

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For appetizer we had cut veggies and hummus, as well as chips and guacamole. Since there were so many pretty colors, I had to use my Merimekko napkins. I mixed some healthy tortilla chips and with regular tortilla chips to allow for health preferences.

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For dinner we set up a buffet {yes, I was trying to add some sparkle with the disco ball in the corner} then we sat down together under the lights. Burgers, carrot salad, corn, chips and watermelon made for the perfect beach day dinner.

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For dessert I wanted to end with something chilly to cool down after a hot day. We bought mango sorbet for something a bit lighter, topped with strawberry and kiwi. I loved using cute paper cups with my favorite flamingo napkins. Last Import - 30

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We sat around chatting in the moonlight for a bit, being glad we didn’t have to go to work the next day. A wonderful way to spend a long weekend!

 

DIY Wellness Day

This past Sunday I hosted some girlfriends for a healthy day of yoga, juicing and massage. It was a great to relax and spend time together, and feel good about it the next day. We had so fun that we are thinking of making it a series.

One of the girls knew someone who could teach yoga as well as our juicing class, so we arranged a private class. Sandra from Latin2Yoga was a great instructor and she got along well with the entire group. She was so laid back and helped the entire day run smoothly.

sandra

The weather held out, so we were able to have the yoga class outside on the terrace. It was supposed to be a scorcher, so I put together water bottles for each of the girls, as well as sweat rags (nothing is worse than slipping and sliding on your yoga mat!)

diy wellness bottles

We started the day at 9 AM, with some light nibbles before yoga class. When everyone arrived, we had oatmeal chia bars and fruit out. I didn’t want it to be heavy, but some people need to fuel their work out, so I wanted to have something available.

morning

Our yoga class was 90 minutes of breathing, movement and relaxation at the end. It was the perfect amount of work and wellness—and I definitely felt sore the next day!

yoga

yoga3

yoga2

After yoga, we were presented with cold towels, scented with peppermint. We added just a few drops to the water to give that high end hotel feeling.

diy wellness towels

Then we really dove into the fruit, oatmeal chia bars and veggies with homemade hummus. I tried new bars this time, from my every day muffins, and they drew rave reviews. I used this recipe here.  We also served cold water and flat belly water {lemon, cucumber and mint, infused over night} as a choice of beverages.

bars

veggies

After we snack a bit, we started the juicing class. It was a 2-hour class, the first hour for understanding the benefits of juicing and smoothies and the second hour for tasting. Most of us are fairly educated on the value of organic produce, so it was a lot of fun to try out new recipes we had never imagined.

collage diy wellness day

juice

smoothie

Once we were well prepped and educated, it was time for lunch. My awesome husband put together a healthy spread of various salads and roasted vegetables. They were so good and so beautiful. With lunch we served iced tea {like the proper southern girl I am!}, my favorite T2 Quince Tea and for a light dessert, I made my favorite unprocessed mounds bites.

collage diy wellness salads

lunch

Once we were good and full, we piled in a taxi and headed to get massages. One of the girls found a modern, fun place where we could get a choice of foot or body massage. It was nice to be able to all get a massage at the same time. I got a body massage and it was wonderful.

As a take away, I gave each girl a box of organic chocolates and some tea to take home to extend her wellness.

diy wellness gift

We had so much fun spending the day together, and focusing on our wellness and ourselves. And, in truth, as I spend a lot of time eating healthy, it was great to share some of my recipes and favorites with my friends. I’m looking forward to the next installment!

 

Unprocessed Mounds Bar

Recently I am obsessed with coconut. Maybe because we are using more coconut oil at home, or maybe because it’s so darn tasty, I want it all the time.

So when I saw this instagram video for how to make Mounds bars in a healthy, whole foods way, I was in.

collage bounty bars

 

Unprocessed Coconut Bars 

1 cup shredded coconut (unsweetened) ➡️

4 tablespoons honey

2 tablespoons coconut oil ➡️

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract ➡️

2/3 cup dark chocolate chips melted {I used 1.5 chocolate bars, because that was more accessible}

Mix the first 4 ingredients together {or blend them for a smoother texture} then scoop them into a silicone ice cube tray and into the freezer for 20 minutes. Once out, pop them out of the tray, and dip into the melted chocolate. Then get them back into the fridge or freezer as quickly as possible. Pretty easy!

This treat is healthy and tasty and perfect for guests. Just be careful, as I bet they will melt quickly with no chemicals.

Enjoy!

Spa Party

My best girls and I– the ones that used to stay out late and have too much fun– have {mostly} all turned a healthy leaf. Our conversations that used to revolve around boys and drinking are now focused on health and wellness. We hike, share recipes, and motivate each other to stay healthy.

We decided to put together a wellness day to take care of ourselves. I’m really looking forward to this, as these couple of months are quite hectic. This will be the perfect chance to to unwind and re-focus on my goals.

We’ve already booked our yoga teacher for a private session, who will then give a lesson on juicing. We also plan to get massages and eat a healthy meal. collage spa party

Any other ideas for what we should include?

{images: yoga, juice, massage, food}

Healthy Breakfast

I posted this picture the other day and got asked about recipes. I recently started eating whole foods and needed to change up my breakfast from high fiber cereal to something with more protein.  Now I make up these babies on the weekend and eat them all week.

egg cup 3

 

The egg cups are really easy and would be great for guests. After greasing a muffin tin (I use coconut oil), crack an egg in each cup. Then add whatever ingredients you’d like– I like arugula for it’s peppery flavor, tomatoes, and sometimes a little bacon– then bake for 8-12 minutes at 400 F, depending on how firm you like your eggs. My husband likes to whisk his eggs first then add the extras for more a quiche effect (minus the crust), but it’s up to you. Plan on 2 cups per person. {adapted from this recipe}

egg cups

These oatmeal chia seed muffins are really good, but quite a bit healthier tasting, so you might need to feel out your crowd. But if you use rolled oats, a well ripened banana and fresh blueberries, they might not know the difference. I use dried blueberries to help the muffins last through the week, but you could try all kinds of combinations. {adapted from this recipe}

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cup Whole Wheat Flour
cup Steel Cut Oats
4tbsp Chia Seed
1tsp Baking Powder
1tsp Baking Soda
0.5tsp Salt, Table
1tsp Cinnamon, Ground
2tbsp Coconut oil
1large Egg, Whole
mashed Banana (ripe)
1cup Almond Milk
1tsp Vanilla Extract
0.25 cup, dried Blueberries
1.Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Prepare muffin pan by greasing or lining with paper liners.
2.Mix together chia seeds and buttermilk; set aside. In a small bowl, mash the bananas; stir in egg, oil, and vanilla. Stir in buttermilk mixture until combined. In a large bowl, stir together the whole wheat flour, oatmeal, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon; stir in the buttermilk/banana mixture. Blend thoroughly, but do not overmix. Gently stir in blueberries just until distributed throughout the batter.
3. Fill muffin cups 3/4 full. Bake for 20 minutes or until golden.

I usually have 2 egg cups and 1 oatmeal muffin for breakfast and it keeps me going, post work out and starting my day. If you try them, let me know how you like them!

Spring Foods

With the weather warming up and the sun peaking through, spring can be such a wonderful season. Warmer weather without it being too hot, but still the promise of a bikini… Spring always motivates me to eat healthy.

I love green anywhere, but especially on the table. Not only is it bright and colorful, but you know it’s gotta be good for you. Here are a few appetizers I want to try. And maybe when monsoon season is over, serve up these up for guests.

collage spring foods

 

Arugula White Bean Dip.

Pesto Zucchini Bites.

Asparagus and Radish Salad (I’ll be making this one dairy-free)

Kale Pesto.

Fresh and Easy

I’ve been working to lose weight and get my body healthy in the last year, and now I’m starting to focus on food. I’m trying to eat whole foods, cleaner and less processed. Even though it seems a bit “Brooklyn” to me sometimes (you know, like eating kale), its recently become more important, particularly living next door to China. And honestly, I feel better when I eat well.

I still have a mean sweet tooth, so I’m always looking for recipes that let me enjoy my cravings without falling off the wagon. Here’s a few I’ve tried lately… and may even serve to guests!

collage fresh

Fresh almond milk. Creamy and rich, it is so much better freshly ground. It goes bad in a few days, so it would be good to have on hand with a full house.

Breakfast quinoa bars. These have a lot of ingredients, but are tasty. I’d make ‘em again.

Oatmeal banana muffins.  Ok, I haven’t tried these yet, but they look good! Next on the list.

Chocolate Chia Pudding. I mentioned this before–  while not that sweet, nor like pudding, it’s fun with fruit.
Any good healthy recipes you can share? Any that have particularly loved by guests– even non-healthy ones?