Tuesday, October 14, 2014

No Longer A Candy Corn Addict

I have gotten rid of my candy corn addiction. No such thing you say? (if you are not a candy corn addict) Or...Impossible! Nothing can get rid of that addiction! (if you ARE a fellow candy corn addict) Trust me, I'm the most shocked of all...but it's true!

If you have been in Target, Walmart, or really any grocery store within the last month you have seen the abundance of Halloween candy just begging for the taking. For a few extremely strong individuals, the variety of sugar wonderfulness is not a temptation. But for others like myself, it is a test of true willpower and fortitude.

I should explain I am typically a bitter salty girl - meaning I will choose chips and salsa every time over cake. However, as the blog title explains, a weakness at my core (literally), is candy corn. Every fall I get truly giddy when candy corn --- and its scrumptious little friend mellow creme pumpkins --- are available for purchase. I am usually the first one in line to buy in bulk and continue purchasing throughout the month with full intent to overeat and get the classic Halloween tummy ache (and accompanying belly fat!). If you are giggling at this concept or you wonder how one could love a candy that has texture like candle wax, then read this as if it were your favorite candy or holiday dessert because come on people - we all have a weakness or 10 at this time of year!

Seriously - I can't believe it either. What is the difference? First, let's back up to September when I noticed the change. I had remained strong and not purchased any candy corn despite the constant temptations. However, I had not forgotten that a fellow candy corn addict had given me a bag of candy corn at the end of last year's season. I opened it to "add to fall decor" (ya right). I dug my paw in that bowl pretty much right away and thought "hmmmm - not as good as I remember - stale perhaps?" Maybe...but my son says it tastes great and I still have not wanted to eat it! Whaaaaa? Yup, it's true! And as I have gone to grocery stores following this event I have not purchased candy corn (with no real urge to do so)!

So whatever your fall, Thanksgiving or Christmas food temptation is the time to combat those cravings and conquer them!

Stacie Tracy,

Live Happy, Healthy, and Wealthy!

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Friday, August 29, 2014

Patra's Top 5 Favorite Things

At least for this week :-)

#5 Starbucks Venti, One Splenda, No foam Latte
This really needs no explanation except why they spelled my name like this, for which I have no answer.

#4 Tarte - Lights, Camera, Flashes™ Statement Mascara
What it is: 
An amped up, ultrablack mascara that lengthens, curls and magnifies lashes for an intensified look, while instantly increasing lash volume by up to 752 percent. 

Why I love it: 
It really does magnify my lashes. And I love the wand. It has a harder bristle than most to help comb out my lashes.

#3 Tarte - Best In Faux Extending Fibers

What it is:
An easy-to-apply, faux lash system with sculpting fibers that enhance lash length and volume to create the appearance of false eyelashes. 

Why I love it:
I really wanted to try that OTHER “Lash Extender” out there on the streets, but I thought it looked just too spidery. I stumbled across this at Ulta and I LOVE it. I love that it looks natural, it’s easy to apply, and that if I run out I can just go pick up some more at the store without having to order it AND the mascara together.

#2 Annie Sloan Chalk Paint

What is it:
ASCP is a decorative paint developed by Annie Sloan for which she is credited in starting the painted furniture revolution in recent times. 

Why I love it:
Chalk Paint® is very easy to work with. It very rarely requires any preparation, such as sanding or priming, and can be used indoors or outside, on just about any surface - from wood to metal, and matt plastic to terracotta. It can revitalise old furniture, walls, ceilings and floors with ease. It's easy, fun and makes amazing results accessible to everyone.

And finally....
#1 Online Auctions!!!

What is it:
Have you discovered online auctions? It's total Crack. I can't get enough!  It's hands down my most favorite thing in the world right now.  I can’t stop. I have filled up our garage with unloved and underutilized pieces that I have high hopes for.  My husband says that our garage looks like a thrift store hit it.  You be the judge:

Why I love it:
I can bid on a piece, walk away, take the kids to the bathroom (they are FOUR, not FOURTEEN), feed them, break up fights, and when I come back I know if someone has outbid me.  The online auction takes place over a couple of days so you don't have to stand out in the heat and bid on something under duress!!!  I take these pieces that need some love and use Ms Annie Sloan's paint to make them beautiful again!

My favorite online auction is Rusty By Design

And there you have it.  My top 5 Favorite Things 

Patra Philips
Live Happy, Healthy, and Wealthy!

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Monday, July 7, 2014

Here Comes the Sun!

This is not an article about wearing sunscreen. As a lover of summer and the sunshine that comes with it, I want to put forth some positive press about the sun. Our biggest and brightest star out there tends to get a bad rap because of its harmful UV rays. I would guess most families are headed to the beach this summer (good times!) or are hanging out poolside where there are many good reasons to enjoy the sun. Your body receives and truly needs benefits from the sun that are tough to obtain from just food or supplements.

Please don't get me wrong, in giving three cheers for the sun I am not promoting a lack of sunscreen or use of tanning beds. We should all use common sense and avoid risks such as skin cancer. I just want to remind and comfort this audience that some exposure to the sun can actually boost one's health (there is a reason "sunny days" has a happy connotation)!

The National Institutes of Health recommends 15 minutes in the sun WITHOUT sunscreen a couple of times a week.  Why?  Vitamins, minerals, and hormones oh my!
Our bodies NEED sunshine for the natural use of vitamins. Vitamin D is the biggest benefit (often called "the sunshine vitamin") which helps our bodies in the following ways:
  • bone health 
  • anti-cancer* 
  • immune system support 
  • losing excess fat 
  • decreasing asthma symptoms 
  • strengthening teeth 
  • protection against dementia and brain aging 
  • heart disease 
  • fighting insomnia and depression 
*Optimizing vitamin D levels may actually help prevent as many as 16 different types of cancer including pancreatic, lung, breast, ovarian, prostrate and colon cancers.

Vitamin D is like a big brother to Calcium. Your body relies on vitamin D to be able to absorb calcium. If you don’t have enough vitamin D, you cannot form enough of a hormone called Calcitriol. Without this hormone, you’ll have insufficient calcium thereby causing your body to take calcium from your skeleton (no bueno). This, in turn, weakens your bones and prevents growth of new bone, say the experts at National Institutes of Health. Calcium also allows your blood to clot plus optimal function of muscles, heart and nerves. 

While Vitamin D is like a big brother to Calcium, its BFF is Magnesium. When one is low, so is the other. The sun provides vitamin D which in turn gives the body sufficient use of magnesium. And why do we need magnesium? 

  • proper growth and maintenance of bones 
  • best performance of nerves and muscles 
  • neutralizes stomach acid 
  • moves stools through the intestine 

I saved the best benefit for last...that happy natural high one gets from sunshine!

In a recent news story, NBC reported some beach goers having addict like reactions from the sun. They reported evidence of endorphins equivalent to those received from ingesting pain killers such as OxyContin. I believe it regarding the endorphins but addiction, really? Seems a bit extreme to me. Can't a girl get a freckle or two + sunshiny happy without being called an addict?! I say go have your fun in the sun this summer with confidence that you're gaining vitamin d (and calcium and magnesium!) to boost your health. If you are not a fan of the sun's rays, live in a climate where the sun doesn't peek out much, or have to be inside for that pesky thing called work, you can add foods rich in vitamin d to your diet.

OR better yet, make sure you're giving your body the benefits of vitamin D (and its little brother Calcium and BFF Magnesium)

Stacie Tracy