NTTC Holiday Gift Guide 2014

December is upon us… and if you’re anything like me, you’re working on getting your holiday gifts purchased!  Every year around this time, I like to include a few of my favorite gifts for the holiday season… especially catered for those of you who are on a healthy living journey and including a few little things that I’d love to see under my tree too!

NTTC Holiday Gift Guide 2014 | No Thanks to Cake
FOR THE KITCHEN

Around the holidays, my favorite place to load up on new gadgets is the kitchen.  Over the years, my kitchen has grown as a result of this technique.  Here are a few things I’d recommend to make sure you’re well-stocked for 2015

Paderno Spiralizer

Let me introduce you to the King of Spiralizers:  The Paderno Spiralizer.  I love this thing.

Paderno Spiralizer | No Thanks to Cake

Not all spiralizers are created equal, and this one is perfectly designed.  I first heard about it from Gina over at Skinnytaste, and quickly realized I needed it when I realized all the cool things that I could make with it.  Thanks to the lovely Inspiralized.

Stocking Stuffers

There are all sorts of fun kitchen gadgets that can slip into a stocking.  How about extra sets of measuring spoons?  I always need these!  Or a jar of the Williams-Sonoma Pizza Seasoning I’m always talking about?

FOR YOUR WRIST

Every girl needs some cute accessories to adorn her wrist.  Here’s a few multipurpose bracelets that will help keep you on track!

Fitbit Trackers

Accountability tools can help keep you on track, I know mine does…  I’ve worn the Fitbit Flex for a few years now, and I’m a huge fan.

Fitbit Flex | No Thanks to Cake

Not only does the tracker do a great job at keeping up with my steps and activity, but it looks great on my wrist.  Fitbit has a ton of options for the wristband, colors and styles that will fit your wardrobe.  Fitbit also has several new models available for the holiday season.  Pick your favorite, and get moving!

Fierce Forward Intention Bracelets

For the past year and a half, I’ve been wearing Fierce Forward bracelets, and I adore them.  I love the fact that I can slide on Bliss or Passion, and have a visual reminder of what I’m trying to accomplish in my life.

Fierce Forward Energy | No Thanks to Cake

I’ve got my eyes on the olive green Energy bracelet above for this year, as it completely matches my intention for the new year…

FOR THE GYM

I always say, if you have to go to the gym, you might as well look fabulous!  Here’s a few ideas for how you can make sure you’re looking your best while you’re sweating away…

New Workout Clothes

My two favorite spots to pick up new workout clothes are through Fabletics (Kate Hudson’s online boutique)…

Fabletics | No Thanks to Cake

And, I’m obsessed with the beautiful pieces that Athleta comes up with every season.  Gift cards to either store will assure you have cute gear to help get you through even the toughest workout!

Athleta | No Thanks to Cake

BIC Bands

These no-slip headbands are my absolute favorite.  And, you (or your elves) can save 10% on your order by using my promo code “KELLYBIC” at checkout!

BIC Bands | No Thanks to Cake

FOR YOUR BOOKSHELF

I’m a little bookish… I love books, cookbooks, and reading in general.  So, here’s a few books that are must-haves.

The Skinnytaste Cookbook

I’ve mentioned this cookbook before, but it is most certainly as MUST have!  I’ve purchased it for a few friends for Christmas… because it’s just plain awesome!

The Skinnytaste Cookbook- Light on Calories, Big on Flavor | No Thanks to Cake

It Was Me All Along by Andie Mitchell

This book officially releases on January 5th, but I think it’s worth adding to your list as a pre-order.  Andie Mitchell from Can You Stay for Dinner is sharing her memoirs about her life, her 130+ lb. weight loss, and how she’s working to overcome food addiction in this new book…

It Was Me All Along | No Thanks to Cake

I’ll be reviewing this book over the holidays and can’t wait to dive into this page turner…

FOR THE MAILBOX

I love the many, many options out there for subscriptions services.  There’s everything from makeup boxes to doggie boxes to fruit of the month club.  I love the idea of the gift that keeps on giving.  Here’s a few ideas that are my favorite.

PopSugar Must Have Box

I’ve received a few of these boxes this year through my affiliation with PopSugar and I adore what they do!  They combine fun gifts for the ladies in a beautiful subscription box monthly… all those things you MUST HAVE!  I highly recommend it!

PopSugar Must Have Box | No Thanks to Cake

Self Magazine Subscription

This is my favorite magazine out there these days.  It has articles on beauty, health, wellness, fitness, and even some recipes.  I always learn something when I read it… and I highly recommend it!

Self Magazine | No Thanks to Cake

What’s on your gift list this year?

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Currently: October

It’s that time of the month already!  Time for my monthly wrap up… I changed it up a little this month, sharing some new things I’ve never talked about in “currently.”  Enjoy!

Currently October | No Thanks to Cake
Current Netflix Binge:

I’ve broken down and joined Netflix.  Yes, the girl who barely watches any television has subscribed to Netflix, for one reason, two words:  GILMORE GIRLS.

Gilmore Girls | No Thanks to Cake

I never watched this show when it was on TV.  However, one extra wintry winter a few years back, I watched the entire series.  And, in watching it, I completely fell in love with Rory and Loralei.  My friend Erin said it well… If only we could be as witty as Loralei one day… 

Seriously, if you’ve never watched this series, it’s time… and the entire series is available on Netflix!  Let me know what you think of Stars Hollow, will ya?

Current Confession:

So, I haven’t really talked about it on social media… and I hate to talk about it with my friends because it’s a total downer, but my car accident last month kicked my arse.  I’ve been on the couch for a whole month… watching Gilmore Girls.  Rotating ice packs (aka bags of corn and edamame) with heat compresses… and planning to take over the world when this damn thing heals.

Now, I’m only sharing this with you now because I’m feeling SO MUCH BETTER four weeks later!  Finally!!!

yay | No Thanks to CakeI’m not 100% and I’m still afraid to carry much… but gosh, not being miserable when I wake up is heavenly!!!  For all of you who have chronic back pain, I am SO SORRY!  For all of those who have listened to me whine, THANK YOU!!!!  I owe you REAL wine!

Current Craft:

I’ve had my eye on a little capelet from Ravelry forever… And, during my fabulous couchtime and while watching Rory’s first days at Chilton… I made it!  I totally want to make another!  Maybe in a charcoal or mustard color.  What do you think??  I’m in love!

Capelet | No Thanks to Cake

This makes me excited to knit additional wooly fall/winter things!

Current Book:

This month, I’m not pointing out a work of fiction… instead, the most beautiful cookbook I’ve laid eyes on in YEARS!

SkinnyTaste Cookbook | No Thanks to Cake

The Skinnytaste Cookbook was released in late September, and I was BEYOND excited to receive my copies.  Gina‘s cookbook is LOADED with calories that are “light on calories, big on flavor.”  I recently made her Skinny Chicken Parmesan and it was phenomenal…

Chicken Parmesan Skinnytaste | No Thanks to Cake

I am in LOVE with all of Gina’s recipes… both those on her blog and these new creations that are part of her cookbook.  Order yours here… it’s amazing, I promise!

Current Hairstyle:

I’m still pretty obsessed with how easy it is to curl my hair everyday for work… I mentioned it last month, but wow, it’s so easy!

How to Curl Long Hair | No Thanks to Cake

And, I have yet to burn myself… {Knocking on wood.}

Current Memorable Moment:

At the beginning of the month, I got to participate in my very first engagement!  My friends Alex and Tiffany made it official… and Alex wanted to have Tiff’s closest friends involved in the action.  I was honored to be a part of it, and had trouble keeping a dry eye during the actual proposal.

The Proposal | No Thanks to Cake

And, of course, she said YES!!!  Congrats, Alex and Tiffany!

Current Outfit:

It’s not REALLY an outfit, but wow, it’s the cutest coat on the planet from New York and Company.  Half coat, half cape… yep, I BIG-PUFFY-HEART love it!

Cape New York and Company | No Thanks to Cake

Hooray for coupons!! For more detail, click here.

Current Flavor Inspiration:

As part of Tiffany’s engagement extravaganza, we had brunch at a little Denver restaurant called Jimmy’s Urban Bar & Grill.  I’m not huge on brunch,  but considering the special occasion, I decided to try something new that I had never had… and to just jump in.

Chicken and Waffles | No Thanks to Cake

Hello, Chicken and Waffles.  I can’t wait to come up with a healthier version of this.  There has to be one.  I’ll create it, and I’ll share it… I’m still having dreams about this stuff.  It was that good… must recreate.

Current Crazy Thing I’ve Done:

I been Christmas shopping all year long.  When I was in California at the wineries with Crystal, I picked up a few things.  I pre-ordered one of my favorite bloggers’ new books, and I even picked up a few fun things in Savannah during Fitbloggin!  All these items have been hanging out in my guest room, but it was time to get them on the road.

Christmas Presents | No Thanks to Cake

I’m far from done Christmas shopping… I still need things for my niece and nephew, my brother, and my stepdad, but this first box is progress.  I did feel pretty nuts wrapping packages in October though…

Current Location:

I’m here (in paradise).  And, it’s my sister-in-law Beth’s 40th birthday tomorrow… Have a fabulous weekend, y’all!

Montelucia | No Thanks to Cake

Divider

View my previous “Currently” posts here:

Currently: September

Currently: August

Currently:  July

Currently:  June

Currently: May

Currently:  April

Currently: March 

Currently: February

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4 Tips for Avoiding Boredom on Your Healthy Eating Plan

If I were a betting lady (which I can be), I’d guess that one of the main reasons that people get off track with their healthy eating plan is that they get bored.

I mean, how many broccoli florets can one girl eat, and for how many days in a row??

Now, I mean no offense to this cute little tree-shaped veggie, but in reality, repetition can get a little boring. I know I’ve experienced it before… and for that reason, I work really hard to make sure that I have variety in my menu.

While I maintain a few staples in my menu, I really try to mix up my weekly meal plans with a variety of foods to keep me both interested and satisfied.

Today, as part of the ProgressOH campaign from Progresso™ Soups, I’m sharing my “Top 4 Tips” to banish boredom while you’re trying to lose weight…

4 Tips to Avoid Boredom on Your Healthy Eating Plan | No Thanks to Cake

1. Vary Your Snacks

There are so many fruits and veggies to choose from, that I never have trouble in this area. A great way to mix up your fruit and vegetable choices are to choose based upon seasons!

Snacks | No Thanks to Cake

For example: Choose cherries in the summer, apples in the fall, and roasted brussels sprouts in the winter. While most fresh produce is available year round, they are extra delicious during their special seasons (and often times, on SALE!)

2. Mix Up Your Main Dishes

I publish two new recipes every single week here on NTTC, and I probably could share even more than that! You see, I try about 2-3 new recipes every week… by design.

It started as a way for me to constantly have great recipe content for you guys here on the blog, but it’s become a creative outlet for this very busy girl and a great way to make sure my menus don’t stall out.

This summer, for example, I was crazy about peppers. Trying all the varieties…..

All the Peppers | No Thanks to Cake

Pictured: Stuffed Poblano Peppers, Pan-Seared Shishito Peppers with Yogurt-Sriracha Dipping Sauce, and Lightened Up Jalapeno Poppers

People often ask where I get my ideas. Well, I find tons of new recipes on the internet (Hello, Pinterest), from my favorite bloggers, and from cookbooks like this one from Skinnytaste.

SkinnyTaste Cookbook | No Thanks to Cake

Get creative! Go International! Experiment with lentils! The sky’s the limit!

3. Keep a Variety of Ready-to-Eat Foods on Hand

On an ideal week, I have time to prepare a fresh meal every night, post lovely blog content, fold laundry, and bake healthy cookies… but in reality, that doesn’t happen that often (Especially the cookie part. Who has time to bake during the week??)

To make sure I’m inspired and creative even on nights when I don’t have time to cook, I make sure I have options in the cupboard and the freezer ready to go at a minute’s notice.

And, with that… I have to introduce you to my new favorite soups. Have you tried Progresso™’s Light soups???

IMG_4717

My favorite soup company offers FORTY different flavors of light soups, clocking in at 100 calories or less per serving.  My favorite flavors are the Light Beef Pot Roast, Light Italian Style Meatball, and Light Savory Beef Barley Vegetable – – Yum!!!

When my friends at Progresso™ reached out to share some of their favorite flavors with me, I couldn’t resist jumping in spoon first!

As part of this campaign, I’ve also fallen in love with the Savory Beef Barley Vegetable, and I’m keeping a spare can of this soup at my desk… for when I can’t leave the office, and I need something warm and filling for lunch. So good, and only 80 calories per serving. Yum-O!

4. Make Your Meals a Production

Regardless of what I’m eating, I always try to make sure that my food is plated up in a pretty way.

Plating Dishes Beautifully | No Thanks to Cake

Pictured: Baked Cauliflower Cakes (L) and Grilled Lime Chicken with Avocado-Corn Salsa (R)

Cooking is truly an art, whether something is coming out of the slow cooker or fresh from the microwave. And… when it’s more appetizing in appearance, I tend to enjoy it more!

Example: When I tried my new Progresso™ soup flavors this week, I made sure that I served them up in style with my pretty Fiestaware dishes. How gorgeous is the yummy Light Chicken Alfredo when it’s dressed up in Fiestaware with a sprinkle of parsley??

Progresso Light Chicken Alfredo Soup | No Thanks to Cake

Speaking of dressing up… My new friends at Progresso™ are hosting a special Progress-Oh! MAKEOVER contest this month! I’ve just finished entering moments ago!

ProgressOH Contest | No Thanks to Cake

Oh yes, you can enter for a chance to win a wardrobe makeover for you and three of your friends, courtesy of Progresso™! Enter the ProgressOh! wardrobe makeover contest at Progresso.com/ProgressOh. Four deserving Progresso fans and three of their friends will each win a $1,000 cash card and a year-long subscription to the POPSUGAR “Must Have Box”

I hope these tips can help you battle boredom every step of the way in your weight loss journey. Adopting them helped me, and can help you too!

What are your tips for avoiding boredom on your healthy eating plan? Share them below in the comments.

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Progresso™ through their partnership with POPSUGAR Select. While I was compensated to write a post about Progresso™, all opinions are my own.

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My Favorite Headbands + {GIVEAWAY}

It’s not often that I make the decision to affiliate with a brand… for an entire year.  When Bic Bands reached out earlier in the year, I knew they were a brand I wanted to work with.  And, it’s been such a year of stylish fun!!

Bic Bands Logo

To start with, I love what Bic Bands stand for.  They are the Because I Can Bands – – Get it?? BIC Bands?  Not only do they empower women with the most amazing flyaway control for any physical activity you can imagine, but they also DO NOT MOVE while you do! And, the company’s founder Sandy also gives back to charity every month via their BIC Giving program.  It’s nice to know that important causes are benefiting from my purchases!

Bic GIving

Here’s some of the great causes that have benefited from Bic Band purchases year-to-date:

Donations Bic Bands | No Thanks to Cake

As though all of that greatness weren’t enough… I also have to mention, they’re ADORABLE!  I consider myself to be a bit of an accessory junkie.. and I love these so much!

They come in just about every color and pattern you can imagine…

Patterned Bic Bands | No Thanks to Cake

They can be sparkly…

Sparkly BIC Bands | No Thanks to Cake

So many designs to choose from… and I always find myself BIC’ed out!

Wearing BICs | No Thanks to Cake

Now it’s your turn!!

And… I have TWO special offers for you to enjoy as you try BIC BANDS for yourself.

BIC Bands Promo | No Thanks to Cake

and… I’m hosting my first BIC BANDS giveaway!!!

NTTC Bic Band Giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I’ll announce a winner via the NTTC Facebook Page and Twitter on Friday, October 10th!  Good Luck, Folks!

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AWP-DO