by Heather

Fresh Superbowl Party Dip

January 25, 2015 in Recipes by Heather

Fresh Bean Dip Appetizer

 

Fresh Bean Dip Appetizer

 

Fresh Bean Dip Appetizer

 

 

Fresh Bean Dip AppetizerAre you hosting a Super Bowl party or in charge of bringing something for the big game? We are looking forward to watching with friends and I am not going to lie, I’m more excited about Katy Perry  than the game. I don’t have a dog in the fight so I’m looking forward to laughs and good times with our friends and GOOD FOOD! And, that’s where this recipe comes in…

This light and fresh dip is something we make over and over again in our home! We enjoy the bright colors this dip has in it as well as the nice light taste. It’s a great contrast to the many other heavy, cheesy apps that may be around. We love to serve this dip on organic, all natural chips but I’ve also been known to eat it as a side salad by itself!

This classic appetizer recipe came from Eric’s family friends and they make it with 2 cans of black beans (no chickpeas), more oil, and an additional packet of Italian Dressing. In order to make it more fresh and healthy though, we cut back on the oil and Italian dressing packet and substituted one of the cans of beans for chickpeas for some additional protein. Next time I want to try it sans Italian dressing at all to make it clean eating friendly. :) This recipe is really flexible so make it work for you!

I hope you and your family have a blast watching the game and enjoy some fabulous food! What’s your favorite appetizer?

Fresh Superbowl Party Dip
 
Ingredients
  • 1 envelope Good Seasons Italian dressing
  • ⅓ c vinegar
  • ⅓ c oil
  • 1 can black beans, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 can corn, drained
  • ½ c diced jalapeno, drained and chopped
  • Add green, red, yellow pepper amount of choice
Instructions
  1. Combine all together and refrigerate for a few hours to let all flavors soak in.

 

by Heather

Look Grand for Less

January 22, 2015 in Fashion, Lifestyle by Heather

B Metro Magazine-My Life Well Loved

I’m so excited to give you guys a behind the scenes peek at a recent photo shoot I did for B Metro magazine.

I’m so grateful that I got to do this experience with the Outlet Shops of Grand River! Between the dynamic duo of fashion stylist Tracy James and photographer, Chuck St. John, I was in good hands for this shoot. I was given an Outlet Shops gift card to go shop my look. I wanted to find something I could wear to Eric’s graduation in December that would also multitask and take me to church, work and a number of other events.

I could NOT believe my luck when I stumbled on this dress for less than $30 at Old Navy Outlet! It is the perfect piece to look professional and pulled together and I added a rich jewel toned cropped jacket for a little flair. I’m not sure if I was more shocked about the price tag on this dress or the fact I found that cute blazer at Charlotte Russe!

I’ve been slightly nervous about breaking into the oxford shoe trend, but these lace-up kitten heels make it easy to break into. Per usual, I’ve got a full on arm party going on, a great statement necklace and pops of color to pull the look together. I had a blast during this shoot and so appreciate the opportunity to represent The Outlet Shops of Grand River in B Metro!

*Thank you to Magen Davis Photography for the shots of the mag in this post.

For this whole outfit, I only spent $185 including the shoes, jewelry, purse and accessories, what a steal! READ THE ARTICLE AND GET ALL DETAILS BY CLICKING HERE. What’s your favorite shopping score recently?

by Heather

Best Meals Happen at Home (Publix Giveaway)

January 18, 2015 in Recipes by Heather

As many of you know, I am ALL ABOUT a meal plan and saving money at the grocery. I’ve written many a post on meal planning and believe it is the best way to save your family money, to eat nutritiously and to prioritize time together. Publix’s Best Meals Happen At Home can answer your “what’s for dinner” dilemmas with easy recipes and quality brands that the whole family will love.

Publix is teaming up with Unilever foods to celebrate the New Year and bring the best to the dinner table. After the busy holiday season, you’re looking to get back into a steady routine for the New Year. Best Meals Happen At Home helps you find new recipes so you can make quick, easy and delicious meals for the whole family in 30 minutes or less. In fact, I’m sharing one of those recipes below for this yummy Italian Sloppy Joe AND offering a $50 Publix gift card giveaway! Make sure you head to the very bottom of this post to enter to WIN!

Italian Sloppy Joes

5.0 from 1 reviews
Italian Sloppy Joe's
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6 servings
 
Ingredients
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 medium onion, chopped (about ½ cup)
  • 1½ cups Prego® Traditional Italian Sauce or Prego® Roasted Garlic & Herb Italian Sauce
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 6 Pepperidge Farm® whole wheat Hamburger Buns, split and toasted
Instructions
  1. Cook the beef and onion in a 10-inch skillet over medium-high heat until the beef is well browned, stirring often to separate meat. Pour off any fat.
  2. Stir the Italian sauce and Worcestershire in the skillet and cook until the mixture is hot and bubbling. Evenly divide the beef mixture among the rolls.

*Note: You can also use your own all natural tomato paste and seasonings as an option to make it clean eating friendly!

Share an image of your Best Meals Happen At Home favorite dish with the hashtag #BestMealsAtHome for a chance to win Publix’s gift cards! Plus, you can save BIG with exclusive Publix coupons and FASTastic Recipes by signing up for the weekly coupon and recipes emails.

To learn more, head over to http://www.bestmealsathome.com.

Publix Best Meals at Home

*Sponsored post by Lunchbox, all opinions are 100% my own.

See below to enter to WIN the Publix gift card giveaway!
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by Heather

Almond Butter Protein Balls

January 15, 2015 in Clean Eating, Recipes by Heather

Almond Butter Protein Balls

Are you trying to stick to your Clean Eating and/or healthy goals for 2015? I’m right there with ya, girl. However, sometimes, I’ve got the hankering for something a little bit sweet and don’t want to blow all the hard work I’ve been doing. While this recipe is no Zoe’s Kitchen chocolate chip cookie, it is a nice little treat to take away the sugar rush urge.

These Paleo and Clean Eating approved Almond Butter Protein Balls use all natural ingredients and can be whipped up very quickly. When I had Magen over to shoot these little protein balls, she raved about how her kids would love these! I hope that you guys love them for a pre-workout snack or your kids can enjoy them for an after-school snack.

5.0 from 1 reviews
Almond Butter Protein Balls
Prep time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 cup all natural almond butter
  • ½ cup honey
  • ½ cup coconut flour
  • Finely ground flaxseeds (optional)
  • coconut flakes
Instructions
  1. In a mixing bowl combine all ingredients.
  2. Roll into small balls.
  3. Roll the formed balls in coconut flakes or simply dust tops with flakes.
  4. Place in freezer to firm up quickly if desired.

Almond Butter Coconut Protein Balls

If you’ve never heard of Flaxseed before, it may be time to check it out. It’s very easy to incorporate into smoothies, yogurt, and these protein balls! Flaxseed may help fight heart disease, breast cancer, and diabetes! Flaxseeds contain Omega-3 fatty acids (healthy fats), lignans (antioxidant qualities), and fiber (fills you up!).

How are you doing with your healthy eating? Have you found any new healthy snacks or treats like these you can’t live without?

**Thanks to Magen Davis Photography for these shots!

by Heather

Non-Negotiable Beauty Products

January 14, 2015 in Fashion by Heather

I’m thrilled to welcome Jennifer from Health Hard today on the blog. She launched her blog not long ago and it is already too pretty and sophisticated not to love. Jennifer and I share a love for Pure Barre, and met at Samford our freshman year. It’s always fun to have a friend come full circle from the Samford life to blogging life. :) Please make sure you check out Health Hard, you don’t be disappointed!

Hi there! My name is Jennifer and I’m so honored to be guest blogging for my friend Heather!

I live in New Orleans, LA, own two Pure Barre locations and blog about living a balanced and healthy lifestyle in my free time. Today I wanted to share with you 17 of my top beauty products that I truly believe in. I’m a very busy person so my beauty products really need to work, work fast and easily fit into my daily routine. These are my non-negotiable beauty products.

Let me know what you think or if you have any “must try” products!

health Hard 17 beauty products must haves

1. Bare Escentuals bareMinerals Blemish Therapy – The sulfur in this product helps not only conceal blemishes, but helps breakouts from developing. This product works extremely fast too!

2. Prime Style Extender – I won’t wash my hair unless I have this on hand. This leave in conditioner repels dirt … leaving your blowout fresh for days. It really works and is a life changer!

3. Bobbi Brown Shimmer Brick – This brick will give you an instant daily glow that’s perfect for running errands or a night on the town. It’s the “healthy” look we all want!

4. Sugar Lip Treatment – Some may argue this is a little splurge, but I justify the price because it’s sulfate free, nourishes lips and had an added SPF bonus!

5. Clarisonic – If you haven’t jumped on the Clarisonic bandwagon, then now is the time to do so! This tool helps cleanse up to 6x better than just washing your face with your hands. It’s easy to travel with and stays charged for days!

6. Juice Beauty Green Apple Peel – I wish I could say I do this mask 2x a week, but life gets in the way! It’s all about balance, right? However, when I do an at home mask this Green Apple Peel is my go-to! It helps remove all dead skin cells and aids with hyperpigmentation.

7. Dr. Dennis Gross Alpha Beta Peels – This is a face peel that you can use daily which evens skin tone and gives you an extra glow. I love that this peel also diminishes fine lines and wrinkles. They come in single use packets (which I recommend) because they make traveling a breeze!

8. Amazonian Clay Waterproof Eyeliner - I’m not a fan of eyeliner everyday, but when I do wear it this Tarte liner is my favorite. It’s soft, easy to put on, infused with clay and stays on all day!

9. Coconut Oil – This is my favorite brand of coconut oil and I buy it locally at Whole Foods. I always slather my skin (and sometimes hair) with it after I bath. Side note: I bath everyday! Here’s why. Coconut oil has many other uses than just a moisturizer … but that’s a whole other blog post :)

10. They’re Real – THIS. IS. THE. BEST. MASCARA. EVER. It lengthens, volumizes, separates lashes and stays on all day long!

11. SkinCeuticals Physical Fusion UV Defense – A good friend introduced me to this SPF 50. It’s lightweight, doesn’t burn your eyes when applying and it’s an amazing skin tone color that you can wear alone or under makeup. The best part, this SPF is anti-poor clogging .. which should be a priority for everyone!

12. Moroccanoil Hairspray – This hairspray keeps your blowout in tact all day without that “plastered” look … plus it smells great too!

13. SkinCeuticals Hydrating B5 Gel – B5 is great in general, but it works wonders for your skin … especially during the winter! This is hydrating and helps tissue repair.

14. Tanda Zap – Who loves pimples? No one! This little beauty machine works, but you have to use it diligently. If you “zap” a blemish at least 2x a day before it gets too developed, this Tanda Zap will prevent it from surfacing on your skin! It’s magic … especially if you use it in correlation with blemish therapy.

15. BioSilk Silk Therapy – I’ve used this product well over ten years! I use it on my skin and hair, wet or dry.It combines nicely on wet hair along with the style extender before blowdrying.

16. Young Living Peace and Calming – This little essential oil is a daily routine for me. I dab a little on my wrists and neck instead of perfume. I’ve been known to put it on my friends who need to take it down a notch as well. It calms me, smells amazing and I just love it! .

17. Dior Addict Lip Maximizer – I have like 4 tubes of this (addict, much)! This plumps lips full enough to smooth out, but doesn’t have that nasty tingly feeling. It’s a great neutral color as well!

Now that you know my non-negotiable beauty secrets, I’d love to know yours! Do tell and please comment below!

For more of my beauty tips or motivation on how to live a balanced and healthy lifestyle, please visit www.healthhard.com

xoxo, Jenn

by Heather

My 2015 Goals

January 12, 2015 in Lifestyle by Heather

focusI went to a workshop last week on goal setting through See Jane Write. It was really helpful to have some time carved out to force myself to think through attainable goals that will also push me outside my boundaries. We talked about creating goals rooted in your values, so first I listed out the things that are most important to me:

-My relationship with Christ

-My marriage

-Strong friendships (Being out and about/social)

-Family

-Creativity

-Being Active/Healthy living/eating well

-Traveling

Here are my measurable, year-long goals based around those:

1. I want to increase the revenue from my blog and social media consulting by 80% this year.

2. I will read She Reads Truth devotional 5 days a week.

3. I want to read 2 books per month.

4. I want to learn to say no to the OK things to prioritize the more important things (time with Eric, close friends, family)…now I need to figure out how to make this more measurable…

just do it.At our goal setting conference, Javacia challenged us to also write down 90 day goals to help us get to our year-long goals and to chart out Momentum Moves which are smaller steps to help us get to the 90 day goals. I thought this was a brilliant idea because sometimes the big goals seem a little lofty and hard to keep striving for without the smaller goals in between. It’s a great way to break up the monotony you feel about looking at those same 3-5 big picture goals all year-long.

So, let me challenge you today that if you haven’t already sat down and thought long and hard about what you want out of this year with your career, your blog, your marriage, your relationship with Christ…etc to do it! First, write your values and then build your goals around those. If you feel ready to share, please leave a comment below!

by Heather

Beauty Bits: Inside Out

January 8, 2015 in Fashion, Lifestyle by Heather

She Reads Truth DevoI’ve teamed up again with my fabulous Bama blogging friends to bring you another Beauty Bits post. Since it’s January we’re all sharing something to help you cleanse your skin, body or teeth to make for a better you in the new year! Make sure you visit The Style Gathering, Style Briefs, and My Scoop to see their fab recommendations!

I’m sure NO ONE is surprised that I’m focusing on beauty from the inside out. Taking care of your body and your soul are critical for your inner beauty to shine through on the outside! Here’s several things I’ve resolved to do in the New Year to help grow my beauty from the inside out:

1. Read She Reads Truth 5 days a week before going to bed each night or if I miss one making it up on the weekend.

2.  Go back through the 10 DAY CHALLENGE! This challenge is simple and small steps that build on each other to help you form healthy habits that are good for your skin, your hair, your nails, and a host of other organs!

3. Read 2 books a month by reading anywhere on my iPhone! (As I learned at the See Jane Write goal setting conference last night!) So important to feed your soul with quiet time and intrigue your mind to keep growing. Passion is important and can be seen in your smile and your eyes!

4. Continue to eat whole, natural foods…also known as clean eating. It’s important to have healthy balance though. If it’s your spouse’s birthday, SPLURGE and eat the cake! But seriously, overall eating healthy can make your skin look so beautiful, and literally nourishes your body form the inside out.


Clean Eating Made Easy

In order to help you out by feeding your body from the inside out, I’m giving away a year long subscription to eMeals! eMeals has paleo, clean eating, low carb, and a host of other healthy options for meal plans. You simply subscribe to this service for a free two week trial and if you want to stay on after the two weeks, do nothing and you will be charged and enjoy your shopping list and meal plan done for you! Every week you get 7 dinner recipes along with sides and a grocery list sent to your app, delivered by email or you can login to your account to print off this time and money saving tool! Enter to win using the form below. PS I’ve got ANOTHER cash giveaway on Instagram going live today too!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

by Heather

1 Year Anniversary Party

January 4, 2015 in Lifestyle by Heather

My Life Well Loved-Heather Brown

It’s hard to believe it has now been OVER a year since I launched My Life Well Loved. I have been blogging for 5 years now and launched this latest blog on my own 11/11 (my birthday!) in 2013. In the months leading up to the blog anniversary, I thought I might want to do something fun and intimate for some of the supporters of the blog. As I started brainstorming with Meredith of Bustle Gowns, the party continued to evolve and grow into a celebration of love and an outpouring of my gratefulness to all those around me who have made MLWL a possibility. I wish that I could have invited every single blog reader to the party but unfortunately, we all couldn’t QUITE fit into Bustle. ;)

Happy Catering Company-My Life Well Loved
Here’s the deets since y’all couldn’t all join. I wanted you to at least feel like each of you were a part. My sweet friend and photographer Magen Davis took all these beautiful images so that I’ll always remember the details of this beautiful evening.

Magen Davis Photography and My Life Well Loved
Where: Bustle Gowns in Homewood

Time: 6-?

Date: 11/13

Chalkboard Art: Artistry by Augusta

Happy Catering CompanyCatering: Happy Catering Company was a HUGE hit! Apparently they book weddings off their Swiss Dip alone and I believe it!

My Life Well LovedWine: Sponsored by Charlie Bham Pocket Squares

Beer: Avondale Brewery (my local favorite!)

Gigi's CupcakesCupcakes: Gigi’s Cupcakes

VIP Activity Sponsors:

ShoeflyShoefly: provided flashtats and helped us apply them, so fun! They also provided my FABULOUS Sam Edelman over the knee boots that I adore.

Raww Beauty- My Life Well LovedRawwbeauty: provided a lip bar for the party which was a big hit! My mom even asked for one of the lip colors for her birthday.

Sprout & PourSprout & Pour: had some of their cold-pressed juices for everyone to sample.

Kerri Bunn BOMA BeautifulHair & Makeup: Kerri Bunn

Eric Heather and family

My Family!

Bustle Gowns

Meredith, owner of Bustle, and friend.

Eric and Heather-My Life Well Loved

You might recognize these two goofballs.

Heather and Holly

My beautiful sister and wedding specialist and social media director at Happy Catering Co.

My Life Well Loved Party

 

My Life Well Loved

 

My Life Well Loved Heather

Shop the Look: Skirt: Anthropologie (LONG similarsimilar, similar) | Shirt: Forever 21 | Handchain: Kate Morris Jewelry | Earrings: J Crew (Similar) | Necklace: Stella & Dot Luna Wrap Bracelet | Bracelets: E Mcgarrah Designs

I hope this gave you a fun little sneak peek into our night. It was a joy to celebrate with the 60 or so fabulous friends, family members, bloggers, and local businesses who came! THANK YOU BIRMINGHAM and nationwide readers and sponsors who make this blog possible. I LOVE each of you and can’t wait to see what 2015 has in store.

by Heather

Top 10 Posts of 2014

December 31, 2014 in Lifestyle by Heather

Everyone is reflecting on 2014, and in the spirit of that I thought I’d showcase YOUR favorite posts from My LifeWell Loved in 2014. Some of these babies were brought over from my old blog so even though they’re older, they are new and re-published here in 2014. From the looks of things, you guys really love occasional splurge foods, healthy recipes, and Pure Barre which I try to serve up a lot! :) As always, I’m all ears about what you want to see more of in 2015 though so let me know in the comments what your favorite post was or if you want to see more of something next year. Happy New Year, everyone!

Chicken and spinach pasta bake. Pinned over 1 million times!

1. Chicken & Spinach Pasta Bake: No surprise here! This recipe is what landed me on the Pinterest landscape. This recipe went viral and within a few months I went from having a couple of thousand followers to over 20,000 on Pinterest. I didn’t even know what had happened at first. This recipe has been pinned well over a million times now and is a great classic dish for company. We have made it over and over again.

Pin it here for later.

Cauliflower Casserole from My Life Well Loved2. Cauliflower Casserole:  This recipe was made out of desperation to make myself like cauliflower. I figured if it was smothered in bacon, green onions, cheese, and spices, I couldn’t resist it, RIGHT?! Right. And apparently, y’all couldn’t resist it either.

Pin it here for later.

The Clean Eating pantry staples you need in your kitchen to help you succeed at quick and easy healthy meals3. Clean Eating Pantry Staples: I had a lot of fun working on this post! It was a collaboration with my friends at Winn Dixie. I’m really hoping to get this in an easily printable format soon for you guys, so stay tuned!

Pin it here for later.

Spinach Pinwheels4. Spinach Pinwheels App: I am embarrassed by some of the photography on these when I was still trying to figure out how to shoot food. Many times it’s still lackluster iPhone 5c photos, but I’m hoping to up my game even moreso soon. Luckily, y’all still love me! ;)

Pin it here for later.

Pure Barre Birmingham First Class5. 10 Tips for Your First Pure Barre Class: This post was was so natural to write. I love trying to put into words what Pure Barre is. It’s so hard to understand until you first experience the Lift. Tone. Burn. action. I’m looking forward to writing many more PB tips posts.

Pin it here for later.

Dorm Room Ideas6. Dorm Room Style: I honestly was shocked by how well this post did. Shout out to my rockstar college followers! Thanks for reading. :)

Pin it here for later.

Easy Cinnamon Sugar Pretzel Snack7. Cinnamon Sugar Pretzels: This salty sweet mix is NOT to be missed. Can you say highly addictive?

Pin it here for later.

Sausage Balls appetizer8. Light Sausage Balls: Quick, easy and a fabulous app. Can’t really go wrong with this one!

Pin it here for later.

Trying out a Cleanse9. Trying Out a Cleanse: I notice this post tends to get popular when preparing for bathing suit season and again for New Year’s resolutions. ;) It’s an easy to follow 7 day cleanse that you should modify to fit you and your needs if you choose to do it.

Pin it here for later.

Christmas traditions for couples10. Christmas Traditions for Couples: I love this post because it’s personal but also practical. It really makes my heart happy that other couples are benefitting from it.

Pin it here for later.

Well, that’s all folks! The top 10 posts of 2014! Thanks for reminiscing with me. I’ll see you next year. XOXO

by Heather

Healthy Breakfast Ideas

December 30, 2014 in Clean Eating, Healthy Living by Heather

Healthy Breakfast IdeasIt’s that time. I’m starting to feel blah. My energy isn’t what it was, my abs don’t look as strong, and I can tell by my clothes that things aren’t fitting as they should. While the splurges have been fun over the Christmas season, it is certainly time to get back to healthy habits!

The first meal of the day usually sets the tone for the day so I’m sharing some of my (and my reader’s!) favorite healthy breakfast ideas to help you get your rear back in gear with me! ;)

Healthy Breakfast Ideas
I’ve discovered that most healthy breakfasts can be centered around a nut butter, fruit, and some type of dairy or dairy substitute. Whether you want to enjoy some banana with all natural peanut butter, whip up a shake with a base of some fruit and almond milk, or just a small fruit salad with greek yogurt, there’s no need to overcomplicate things. My rule of thumb is that if possible, I like my ingredients to be all natural and if possible to have less than 4-5 ingredients.

I polled my Instagram followers to find out their healthy breakfast ideas and got some AWESOME answers that are worth sharing. Thanks for being a part of the My Life Well Loved community and please keep encouraging each other to eat healthy and live healthy!

Healthy Breakfast Ideas:

  1. Almond butter on whole wheat English muffins with cacao nibs or dark chocolate chips and banana. (@lesliecogbill)
  2. Steel cut oats with local honey, banana or blueberries and walnuts or pecans. (@ladddavis)
  3. Hard boiled egg on whole wheat avocado toast. (@eastandcenter)
  4. Greek yogurt, chia seeds, blueberries and fiber cereal. (@thesealife)
  5. Scrambled egg whites with avocado and sriracha. (@ashley2470)
  6. 8 oz almond milk, 1 tsp peanut butter, half banana, handful of spinach, 1 scoop organic protein powder, ice. Blend to make a shake! (@laurenshaw)
  7. Paleo Breakfast Cookies: They’re my new favorite breakfast that fuels me for a good day ahead!
  8. Cinnamon Peanut Butter Greek Yogurt: This one also feels like a splurge, but it’s not!
  9. Siggi’s non-fat yogurt: less sweet than you would expect from a yogurt. I like all the protein and some of the unique flavors. You can get lots more recipes featuring this product here!
  10. Juicing: This red Love Your Body Juice is one of my favorites!

What’s your favorite healthy breakfast?!

Healthy Breakfast Ideas
siggi’s rather delicious yogurts with simple ingredients and not a lot of sugar.

Try delicious flavors like vanilla, pumpkin & spice, and mixed berries & açai, power up your breakfast with their recipes and print a coupon.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of siggi’s Dairy. The opinions and text are all mine.