Pandemic Possibilities

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Boy 2020 has been intense! Moving states, squatting at different family and friend’s homes, hitting my breaking point, breakup , purchasing a home and 1 final move from 4 different spaces… also can’t forget about a pandemic, civil injustice and protests+riots.

A lot has happened in our country and worldwide in the past 3 months. This post is about what has been happening in my world for the last 6 months. I have had lots of personal transitions that I wanted to update you on.

I’m so grateful to be back home in Indiana! My time in Tennessee was really difficult as I ended up having severe allergies to my new environment. My year in Nashville lead to 7 doctor visits, lots of different prescriptions and 100 plus needle pricks in allergy testing. Only option left was to attempt shots that would take 2-5 years to build up my system for relief. My eyes would swell shut after 2 weeks, which as you can imagine it presented issues. I would drive back home to IN after 1-1.5 weeks in Nashville to heal then head back and repeat.

Fortunately I was able to stay with my company and take over a new territory starting in April. I finalized my travel in Tennessee in early March when COVID started to get more serious.

From my Tennessee travels I then flew out to San Diego, CA. While in CA announcements of businesses closing due to COVID began and I changed flights to return sooner for fear of being stuck in CA. When returning, my forced quarantine ended up being an eye opening blessing that lead to so many possibilities!

I did hit my absolute lowest point, which you can either stay down or pull yourself back up. I have God on my side and he showed me so many back to back blessings and I’m so grateful.

God’s 1st blessing was to present me with Ally Vaeth’s ElevateU Bootcamp challenge which was a great insight to her program. I am now in her ElevateU program and learning so much about Mind, Body and Spirit! Another post dedicated to this topic to follow!

My next blessing was timing. I have been looking at houses and they kept selling prior to arriving to the showing. A house in the area I had been looking posted at 10:00pm on a Friday at the end of March and I had an offer on it before Midnight. I made the decision to offer based on the images posted on Zillow (no idea of the floor plan), advice from my realtor and faith that my prayer were answered. I did get to see the house the next morning and I updated my offer in hopes to secure it! My quick judgment worked in my favor because they chose my offer, even though they had multiple offers. Next blessing was no bid war !

During the time of waiting to close on my house my Aunt randomly text me (another God blessing) offering to stay at the cabin since the numbers in Marion county for COVID were spiking. She was giving me an option to help stay healthy, but she really gave me a chance to reclaim inner peace. The cabin is my happy place that makes me feel calm and grounded.

During the pandemic God created so many possibilities for me. I am now a homeowner again, working on my mental , spiritual and physical health, growing my Mary Kay business and back in a territory I love for my job. I am grateful!

XOXO,

Cecee

*This post is not intended to dismiss the magnitude of the pandemic. I truly feel for those who have been impacted. I have deeply missed my family and friends . I am beyond grateful for my health, as well as for those who I hold dear. I am choosing to reflect on the positives that occurred during these unusual times.

Let’s Celebrate the 4th!

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Are you considering hosting either a brunch or BBQ for the 4ht of July?  Are you looking for a healthier menu? If you are, I have you covered!

I love brunch and luckily there are so many ways to lighten up your menu!

Brunch Menu

  • Sausage and Egg Muffin– 12 servings (1 muffin/ serving)
    • 1 Cup, Shredded Potato
    • 3 egg, Egg Whites
    • 3 large, Egg
    • 0.25 cup, 2% Milk
    • 0.25 cup, Shredded Mexican Cheese
    • 3.00 links, Johnsonville Turkey Sausage
    • 0.50 oz, Red Bell Pepper
    • 0.25 cup, Mushrooms
    • Bake the shredded potato in a muffin pan at 425 Degrees for 15 mins or till crisp edge, the add all the veggies and diced sausage on top. Then add the mix of eggs, egg whites, milk, cheese, salt and pepper to taste. I also added some fresh basil. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 mins of until egg is done.
    • Macros: 76 cal/ 3g F/ 4g C/ 5g P

  • Chicken and Protein Waffles (birch benders protein pancake mix, per instructions on package) – For a quick cheat on the chicken I purchased Chic-Fil-A chicken strips and use 2 chicken strips.  I top it with 1/4 cup of sugar free syrup.
    • Macros: 415 cal/ 10g F/ 45g C/ 30g P

And/Or

  • Red, White and Blue Protein Waffles with Turkey Sausage- I follow the instructions on Birch Benders Protein pancake mix for waffles and toss and few blueberries into the mix. Serve with strawberries on top, sugar free syrup and Johnsonville Turkey Sausage, 3 links.
    • Macros: 341 cal/ 9g F/ 42g C/ 28 g P
  • Red, White and Blue Yogurt- 1/4 c blueberries
    • 1/4 c strawberries
    • 1/2 c fat free greek yogurt
    • 1 tsp cinnamon
    • Macros: 192 cal/ 1 g F/ 40g C/ 13g P 
  • Pasta Salad: 11 servings (1 cup per serving)
    • 1 Bell Pepper, Green Bell Pepper
    • 2 Tbs, Onion Green Whole
    • 1 tbsp, Basil, fresh
    • 1 g, Pepper
    • 1 Tablespoons, Salt
    • 1 bunch, Broccoli, steamed
    • 0.25 container (60 tomatoes ea.), One Single Cherry Tomato
    • 1 container (32 tbsp ea.), Free Zesty Italian (Fat Free Dressing)
    • 1 container (5 3/10 cup dries ea.), Whole Grain Pasta Rotini
    • Boil pasta per box instructions and let noodles cool. Then mix all the above in a large bowl and chill for at least an hour before serving.
    • Macros: 180cal/ 1g F/ 35g C/ 6g P
  • Caprese Bites: 2 servings (4 each)
    • 8 cherry tomatoes
    • 1 low fat mozzarella stick
    • 8 fresh basil leaves
    • 1tbsp olive oil and balsamic vinegar mix (I use a dipping oil mix with spices)
    • Macros: 86 cal/ 11g F/6g C/ 4g P
  •  Fresh Fruit- Watermelon is always a good choice and I added sprigs of mint leaves for presentation . 1 cup of watermelon
    • Macros: 86 cal/ 0g F/ 22g C/ 2g P

BBQ/Cookout Menu

Planning a BBQ ?! I have the best burger recipe for you! There is a key special ingredient, Home Grind that perhaps myself or Kevin can introduce you! Home Grind is an amazing blend of peppers to add a little heat to your burger.

  • Venison Burger: 7 servings- 1 burger per serving: Video for prep below
    • 1 lb(s), Venison (sub lean ground beef/turkey burger-macros are for venison)
    • 1 large, Egg
    • 0.50 cup, Oats
    • 6 g, Pepper
    • 1 tbsp(s), Garlic, raw
    • 1.50 tsp, Original Flavor Salt Free Seasoning Blend
    • 1 tsp(s), Spices, garlic powder
    • 2 Tsp, Seasoning Chupacabra
    • 1 pinch of Home Grind
    • Macros: 114 cal/ 5g F/ 5g C/ 13g P

Utilize the brunch menu and serve with the pasta salad, caprese bites and watermelon. Sun tea is always a good choice to add!

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For dessert I recommend Red, White and Blue angle food cake.

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  • Red, White and Blue Angel Food Cake: 1 serving
    • 1 Slice, Angel Food Cake
    • 0.25 cup, halves, Strawberries, raw
    • 0.25 cup, Blueberries
    • 2 TBSP , Fat-free Whipped Cream –
    • Macros: 181 cal/ 0g F/ 41g C/ 3g P

I hope you enjoy celebrating the holiday with these lighter menu items! Have a safe and Happy 4th of July!

XOXO,

Cecee

Fireworks and Festive Wear

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Summer is in full swing and it is hard to believe the Fourth of July is upon us! With 4th falling on a Wednesday the big question is “when do we celebrate and what should I wear?”

I have done some research with the help of Indy Star and will break the list down by free firework displays around Indianapolis and the days to see them. I have also mentioned a few other areas of Indiana. If you are interested in festivals to attend please see the Indy Star link. Also there are more options on the Indy Star site for places to see fireworks, but they had an admission fee associated. The below listing is for free admission.

June 30th Fireworks

  • Spark Fishers at the Fishers Freedom Festival- Viewing at Holland Park or Nickel Plate District  begins at 10pm
  • Greenwood- Craig Park begins at 10:15pm
  • Mallow Run Winery begins at 9 pm
  • Madison Township 4th of July Blazin’ Celebration in Camby begins at dusk
  • Thunder over Patoka at Patoka Lake begins at 9pm

July 4th Fireworks

  • IPL Freedom Fest at Indiana War Memorial begins 10pm -fireworks set off from Regions Tower downtown Indianapolis
  • Fourth Fest in Lawrence Community Park begins 10pm
  • Lebanon’s Memorial Park begins at 10pm
  • Carmel Fest downtown Carmel begins at 9:45
  • Morse Lake begins at 10pm
  • Blast on the Bridge at Geist begins at dusk
  •  Noblesville HS begins at 10pm
  • Westfield at Grand Parks begins at dusk
  • Moorseville at Pioneer Park begins at Dusk
  • Plainfield at Hummel Park begins at 9:55pm
  • Greenfield JR High begins at dusk
  • Pittsboro at Scamahorn Park begins at 10pm
  • Terre Haute at Fairbanks park begins at 10pm
  • Fort Wayne downtown begins at 10pm
  • French Lick Resort begins at dusk

July 7th Fireworks

  • Racoon Lake Independence Day Fireworks and Beach Bash begins at 9:30pm

Below you will find patriotic outfit ideas for casual BBQs, brunches, festivals or a fun night out. Also if you are planning a brunch or BBQ for the 4th, stay tuned as follow up blog post will be coming with menu ideas. All of my outfits except for the dress in the pool came from TJ Maxx!

4th dresses

Dressing up the 4th

4th shorts

Keeping it casual