Category Archives: Recommendations from Kayla Ann

Brunch in LA with my Sister

Okay, so for the rest of the day!

This morning after breakfast (and picking up the camera cord!!) I headed out to LA to meet my Sister


We went out for brunch at a little place called Nata’s

I give them a 4 out of 5, because the service wasn’t so great (this time).

The service could have actually earned them a 3, but Jinna said that they never have service like that normally

Plus, the food was so good, I wish I could give them a 5!


Luckily, Jinna is like me, and likes to split!

I love splitting, because then you get the best of both worlds plates!

To split, we got-

  • An Omelet with spinach, artichoke hearts, and feta
  • Rosemary potatoes on the side (so great with hot sauce!!)
  • Crepes with whipped cream & strawberries


These were the best of the best, crepes!

Usually, crepes just taste like a thinner pancake, or a sister to french toast. Nope, not these! These tasted like crepes. I feel like although I’ve had crepes before, this was my first experience! It tasted like nothing I’ve ever tried.

Jinna and I had such a good time. It was so nice to be able to sit and chat with my Sis. Thank you Seester!

After brunch, Jinna shared a some awesome sites with me. Here are a couple:


On my way home from my great morning with Jinna, I stopped to visit my best friend.

She lives 45-60 minutes from me, so of course I would stop if I was passing through!

Look at little Evan’s (her brother) feetsies! Ahhh, so cute! (And no, I don’t have a foot fetish!!)

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I texted Kayla on my way there, and told her that I could “see, taste, and smell coffee in the near future.”

She was sweet enough to make a pot, which I enjoyed with this coconut cream pie LARABAR. Yes, you heard me right. The whole pot. All 6 cups of it.

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Before I left, she made me a little treat that she had texted me the night before!

I had to try it! I swear, she comes up with the best things. You can see more of her ideas here.

This one was-

  • Little pieces of dark chocolate
  • A layer of peanut butter
  • A small piece of banana bread LARABAR
  • (We both agreed that this would be great with regular banana too)

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When I got home, I was starving hungry. I snacked on some almond nut thins while I made my sandwich/salad

I usually don’t snack while making food, because it’s kind of mindless, and you never pay attention to what you’re eating… but I couldn’t help myself. The nut thins were a necessity for my starving belly!

I made a delicious salad & sandwich, which both included the goat cheese picture above.

I bought this goat cheese from Trader Joes. It crumbles perfectly when pulled apart with a fork!

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My sandwich had-

  • Toasted Ezekiel Bread
  • Mustard
  • Tomatoes
  • Turkey
  • Spring Mix Lettuce
  • Smear of Goat Cheese


The Salad had-

  • Spring Mix
  • Goat Cheese
  • Pepitas
  • A tablespoon or so of Italian Dressing

This was the perfect little meal, and just what I needed!

I am babysitting tonight, and I brought a lunch pail full of healthy things, just in case I get hungry

Babysitting is my biggest weakness when it comes to paying attention to what I am putting in my mouth.

There is always new, tempting foods in front of me, and for some reason when I am just around kids, it is so much easier to indulge, and maybe even binge! To avoid that, I bring plenty of my own healthy snacks. I never really eat them all, but just knowing that I have plenty available to me if I want it, helps take away those cravings. I highly recommend this for all of you babysitters. Many of you have shared that you experience similar habits while babysitting.

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Filed under Dinner, Eating Out, Lunch, Recommendations from Kayla Ann

Healthy French Toast TrEAT!

Good morning girls! Hope you are off to a great start this Friday!

Wake up, and be thankful for all the good things that will come to you today. Be prepared for your day to reach its full potential, and best of all, believe in yourself & follow your heart! 

This morning, after my quiet time/journalling, I left to take one of the boys I nanny to school. On my way there, I snacked on this Ginger Snap LARABAR.

If you haven’t tried this because maybe you’re afraid of an overwhelming Ginger taste, don’t be! Just give it a try. It tastes more like cinnamon than Ginger to me 🙂

After I took Jordan to school, I went to the Gym and had such a fun workout! I did Step II this morning, and I seriously had the best time. I think I was smiling the whole time! I kept thinking about how it didn’t feel like a workout, but like a dance class! I wasn’t working out, I was dancing! It made me enjoy it so much! I was also thinking about how good I feel about this day 🙂

I am expecting good things to happen, because everyday that I believe that, little blessings come all day from all different unexpected directions 🙂

TrEAT ♥ 

(If you didn’t see my first TrEAT, this little word is just another saying for a recipe. It’s just more fun, hehe! I have a Category for the TrEAT’s I have done so far. It’s on the left side of my blog under Categories)

After my workout, I came home and made french toast inspired by my best friend Kayla!

She sent me a picture of her delicious french toast, and gave me her recipe! I tweeked it just a little bit according to what I had in my own cupboard, and this is what I came up with!

2 Egg Whites

1/2 tsp. Pumpkin Pie Spice

A few shakes of Cinnamon

(Kayla used Egg Whites, Cinnamon, Nutmeg, Vanilla, and Agave- YUM!)

-(Whisk all of these together)

-Dip Ezekiel Toast in the mixture, and wet both sides

-Put the wet Ezekiel bread into a pan that has been heated & coated with a thin layer of butter

-Put a little swirl of honey over the top of the French Toast and flip it on it’s belly (after it’s back seems golden brown)

-Slide out of the pan onto your favorite plate

-Pretty it up with your favorite toppings, and enjoy!

(The edges of your French Toast should be golden-brown)

On top of mine, I put…

1 sliced banana

1 tbsp. of heated Maple/Agave Syrup (pictured above)


Thank you Miss Kayla! You come up with the best ideas!

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Filed under Breakfast, Recommendations from Kayla Ann, TrEATS for my readers! ♥

Happy Sunday! I got to spend it with the sweetest little one ever!

Hi loves! Hope you are all having a fabulous day 🙂

Happy Sunday!

This morning, Kayla and I woke up and had Steel Cut Oats, which she made up last night (they take a while to cook)

They were so nums! We had her homemade granola on top. Look at that color!

Goodness, she gets craftier with her cooking every time I see her. Can I be jealous of my best friend? Because I am! Good thing she’s a sharer with her ideas 😉

Here we are! I have honestly never had such a wonderful friend. I am truly blessed with this one, and I just feel like it should be said. I feel so lucky, to have someone who I can actually count on. I could literally go to her for anything, and when something is up, she’s always the first one to make sure I’m doing okay. I’ve literally never met a stronger woman in my life. That’s why I say she is my inspiration. So, thank you Kayla, I know you’re reading this 🙂

On my way home, I had one of her homemade quinoa bars. Of course! Something else homemade! Haha, she does it all!

Arriving home in Ventura, I picked up little Chloe and we went to meet my family at Snapper Jacks for my cousins Birthday.

Happy Birthday Holly! 🙂

Birthday girl is in the middle!

I didn’t get anything at Snapper Jacks because I was too excited to eat the leftovers that were waiting in my lunch pail 🙂

Here they are! The rest of my Spanakopita, with some rice with Corn & Chile Salsa mixed in from Trader Joe’s.

This salsa is so yummy! Oh, and before I went to pick up Chloe, I had half a banana with a tbsp. of Peanut Butter (didn’t have a camera on me)

Mmm…mmm…mmm! Here is the inside! Spinach, feta, and ricotta cheese. So warm and melty. Perfect!

I went to Trader Joes today, and bought the little Spanakopita’s that they had in the frozen section. I’ll have to letcha all know how they are!

After lunch, I took Chloe back to her house to put her down for a nap. While she napped, I planned a little bit of my week and wrote to all of you 🙂

When she woke up, she came and hungout with me 🙂

She was SO good today (not like she is EVER bad…) She is literally an Angel, I can’t express it enough!

She came up to me, totally out of the blue, gave me a hug, and said “I am so proud of you, Paige.” It was the sweetest thing ever!


Filed under Breakfast, I love kids!, Lunch, Recommendations from Kayla Ann

Day in the Valley with my best friend ♥

Good afternoon, and happy Sunday! So, before I catch up on today, I need to catch you all up on yestaaaday!

Yesterday was a very good day, thanks to my best friend. Ah, I am so thankful for her!

Okay, first off, I started my day by climbing out of bed, getting my journal & coffee, and spending some quiet time waking up. It was so nice… this is my favorite way to wake up, but if I’m not up early enough, it just doesn’t happen. That’s gotta change, or the gym early in the morning is getting kicked (sorry Dad!) 😛

After my quick time, I made some Oatmeal

Old Fashioned Oats


Almond Milk

& Granola, please.

And you’ll never see me eating breakfast without Coffee, till the day I die.

And yes, I am convinced, I would die without Coffee 😉

After breakfast, I got ready & packed, and took off for Miss Kaylas house!

I got there several hours after breakfast, and we made this yummy lunch. We were feelin’ like BBQ Sauce!

Tempeh/Tofu, BBQ Sauce, and a little lite cheese, on a honey wheat bun-bun. It’s a bun-bun because there’s a top & a bottom, and I’m known for open-facers. You will have to excuse me, I am ranting with all of these made up wordie-loo’s today. Okay, I’m stopping. Seriously 😛

On the side we each had a piece of Kayla’s “fried-chicken,” and two & one-half potstickers. Jum-jum-jum! (Apparently, I’m not stopping with the word thing)

After lunch, Kayla and I went to Ventura Blvd. and went shopping at the TJ-Maxxazing. Maxxazing, because this was the best EVER. I got new Paige Aqua Denim, two adorable shirts, two cute belts, new nail polish, annnd new cute wedges! Pics later? Okay, I will 😉

After hours of shopping, we went to dinner. Yes, we shopped for that many hours 😉

We went to this adorable little Vegan/Vegetarian place called “Follow Your Heart.”

We split a meal, because we always do. We always talk about how we both love to split, but no one ever wants to split! Haha, good thing we did because we didn’t even finish what we split! Thankfully! Because it made the best leftovers today!

Anyways, our appetizers included a breadstick, each

Split the picture bowl of jummy-jummy broccoli cream soup (which was made fresh from their produce hours before!)

Andddd…. drumroll pleaaaase….

Spjflajfieajfioeajfasdjlk. Yes, that translates into spanakopita 🙂

It’s a super delicious phyllo pie made with spinach, ricotta cheese, and feta cheese

After that, we went back her house and hungout for a while. We later went to Target, and got AMAZING new makeup from Garnier. Like, I’m in love, and taking back my makeup forever, which doesn’t work for me at all! And yes, I’ll post the makeup I bought as well! I will do all of that this evening 🙂

After Targs… we went to Yogurtland! Yum! Love fro-yo. This is just our thing, pretty much every time we hangout 🙂

Mango Tart & Original Tart

Strawberries & Blackberries

Granola & Shredded Coconut

Yogurt Chips


Filed under Breakfast, Dinner, Eating Out, Recommendations from Kayla Ann, Snacks

How my best friend lost 30lbs and developed a healthy lifestyle

So, todays post is an interview I did of my best friend, Kayla.

She is my biggest inspiration for healthy living, and whenever I need someone to talk to, or am feeling even the least bit down on myself, she is the first person I go to. Two reasons she inspires me are because she has been so successful in her weight loss, and she has the most positive attitude, and is so incredibly nice to herself! She always remembers that she is on a life long journey, and that things don’t happen over night. She is proud of herself every step of the way. Not only has losing weight made Kayla more confident in herself, but she also grew in all other aspects of her life. She got her Bachelors degree in communications, is more social than ever, pushes herself to try new things, is nice to every person she comes in contact with, and has become the best friend to me, that I’ve ever had! She is AMAZING! I love you K! Thank you for doing this interview. I know it’s going to inspire so many women, because it inspires me everyday! 🙂

ALSO, as you are reading the interview, if there is ANYTHING else you would like to ask Kayla, write it down. E-mail me any further questions (NO question is silly). E-mail me at



How much weight did you lose?

-I lost 30 pounds (give or take because I have gained muscle).


How long did it take you?

-I started in 2009.  It took me about 2 years to lose the 30 lbs. and I have not gained any of it back.


How did you do it?

-I was watching a video of Sidney Crosby (from the Pittsburgh Penguins) talk about his workouts and nutrition (I’m very inspired by athletes). After watching that, I started my weight loss journey by eating sweets only once a week and cutting out fast food. Over the next 2 years I started making small changes in my diet. I switched to whole wheat, whole grains and brown rice. I stopped eating candy and junk food and started eating more fruit and veggies. There were a lot of changes I made but it wasn’t all at once so I didn’t feel overwhelmed. I also made sure not to deprive myself because I made a LIFESTYLE change and it’s something that I knew I was going to have to do until I am no longer here. I also started running. I was slow at first and didn’t go too far but I just kept working at it and eventually, I was able to do a half marathon.


Are you where you want to be? Or are you still trying to lose weight?

-I’m not exactly where I want to be. I would like to tone up (Tone it Up 😉 ). But, while I’m not exactly where I want to be, I’m happy with myself and accept myself the way I am at the moment. These things take time and I’m OK with that. “Nature does not hurry yet everything is accomplished.” – Lao Tzu


Do you ever get cravings for the things that you used to eat?

-I really don’t and it’s because I love the way I feel when I eat healthy and I don’t like the way my body feels when I eat the bad foods I used to eat.


What kind of cravings do you get now?

-Well, I usually only get cravings when it’s around that time of the month for me. I will crave something sweet and then something salty. There is nothing in particular that I crave except for chocolate!

I will eat what I’m craving though. I just try to find the healthiest alternative for it. For example, when I crave chocolate, I will eat dark chocolate because it satisfies my craving and it’s more nutritious that milk chocolate. I don’t want it to sound like I don’t eat bad though because sometimes I do. I don’t deprive myself if I go where there is bad food. I just limit the amount that I eat.


Do you ever mindlessly eat now? Or binge eat, as some may call it?

-Yes I do. When I’m PMSing. It’s something that I have the hardest time controlling. I do really good and am pretty disciplined until it is that time for me. Then I will binge and not be totally happy with myself but, the next day, I just start fresh. What’s done is done and you can’t beat yourself up over it. It happens and it’s okay to mess up sometimes. : ) We’re only human.


In your experience, is it true that your body bloats and gains weight around your period, and then goes away once you start?

-YES!! I typically gain about 5 lbs. during that time. I used to freak out about it but once I figured out that it went away, I found peace and acceptance.


How often do you workout now?

-I like to try and get at least 5 days a week in. Sometimes it’s less and sometimes it’s more just depending on what’s happening in my life at the time.


Do you just do Cardio? Or do you weight train too?

-I do both. I have been doing a lot more strength training lately that I ever have before. I really enjoy it. I don’t do as much cardio as I used to but I’m trying to get myself back on track. I like to do cross training in the gym (i.e. Stairclimber, elliptical, rower, bike) as well as HIIT. HIIT is one of my favorite things to do. I also LOVE the Tone it Up workouts! I do them at home when I don’t feel like going to the gym. They kick my butt every time. 🙂


How often do you weight yourself?

-I’ll weight myself from time to time but not very often; maybe once a month, if that. I just go by the way my cloths fit.


How many dress sizes did you lose?

-I went from a size 16 to an 8


What advice do you have for us girls who are trying to lose weight?

-Just try your best and accept the fact that it doesn’t happen overnight. You have to be okay with that and not stress out if you don’t see instant results. Also, try to find as much motivation as you can. Look for it anywhere and everywhere (look, I started by watching a hockey player talk about fitness and nutrition). It really does make it easier when you are motivated. : ) Also, something that my dad has always told me, that has especially helped me in my weight loss journey is, “failure is not falling, failure is not getting back up.” Don’t get discouraged if you fall off track, just get back up and start again. 🙂



Filed under Recommendations from Kayla Ann

Spaghetti Squash

Good morning everyone!

Hope you all slept great! I sure did, I was honestly exhausted when I fell asleep last night. I didn’t even have the energy to post.

Well, for dinner, I had spaghetti squash with pesto, chick peas, and parmesan cheese.

This was so good, and so filling! Have you guys tried spaghetti squash? Kayla let me take some home that she had already fixed, but next time I make it (after I eat what is left, today) I will show you guys how to make your own spaghetti squash! Great alternative to pasta!

Now, I am not going to do a breakfast post right away this morning, because I have to go pick up my phone charger at Kurts house. I left one there, and my other one got left at Kaylas yesterday. I am so BRILLIANT! Haha, why can’t I remember my dang charger?

Anyway, after that I’m going to go get a little cardio in, and then come home and do some tone it up videos. I swear I’m about to buy the whole diet plan, just because I want to read everything those girls have to say! They are now role models to me because they don’t focus on being “skinny,” but they focus on being healthy and very toned. I love it!


Filed under Dinner, Recommendations from Kayla Ann

Make your own protein bars! Pictured step by step!

Okay, so have you ever wanted to make your own protein bars? Well, Kayla has made it simple! She gave me a recipe that I know you will all love as much as I do!

You will need all things pictured above. The rough estimates are as follows:

1 1/2 cup Old Fashioned Oats

2 big scoops favorite protein powder (for my Aria protein, I use 3 small scoops)

1 tbsp. chia seeds

1/2 cup slivered almonds

2 tbsp. honey

1/3 cup favorite nut butter (Sunflower Seed is SO good for this recipe)

1/2-1 tsp. cinnamon

1/2 cup almond milk

First, put your 1 1/2 cup of oats into a mixing bowl

Then add your protein powder, cinnamon, and chia seeds!

Mix it all together!

Next, get your almonds toasting on the stove over medium heat (you don’t need to put any thing in the pan other than the almonds)

While you’re waiting for those to toast, get out a sauce pan and put two tbsp. of honey over medium heat

Then, once warm, add your 1/2-1/3 cup of nut butter (however much you’d like), and your 1/2 cup of almond milk.

After you have a smooth consistency, add in everything you’ve got mixed in the bowl

Stir together

Next, you’re going to get out a baking dish, line it with parchment paper, wax paper, or Pam (whatever you have), and flatten the mixture evenly throughout the whole dish

Fold the edges over, and stick in the fridge until you’re ready to enjoy an easily made protein bar, that you just made YOURSELF! Give it at least 45 minutes 🙂


Filed under Recommendations from Kayla Ann, Snacks

Cinnamon swirl protein bread, healthy quesadillas, and healthy nachos

Hey guys! So, I have been gone since yesterday evening visiting Kayla. Remember? My best friend- we used to both have blogs (that’s how this blog started!)

Well, last night when I got to her house, we went out for frozen yogurt like we always do. I was telling her that frozen yogurt always somehow tastes better when we get it. I think it’s because it’s “our thing.”

After that, we went to Starbucks and got China Green Tips tea, and went back to her house and had girl talk, like we always do. It’s so refreshing to have such an understanding, good listening, good advice giving, and loving friend. I’m so thankful!

This morning, we woke up and had our Coffee talk, with Cinnamon Swirl Protein Bread.

She introduced me to these for the first time, and also gave me the recipe link to share with all of you! Seriously- they are so good, and only 55 calories! Now that number is worth looking at, because it makes it even more enjoyable!

Click here for the recipe.

After breakfast, we made homemade protein bars, which I’m going to blog about in the next post! Then, we got our walkin’ clothes on and headed out to Whole Foods. They were having a sale on LARABARS for 4 for $5, and then if you bought 12+ you got an extra 20% off on top of that. You better believe I stalked up!

We got these two new bars to try. We opened them up when we got in the car and gave em both a taste. Both really good! If you like Coffee, you will most likely like the Cappuccino- it has coffee in it. If you like crunchy, you will most likely like the KIND bar. We both liked both, and on my way home from Kayla’s, I finished off the Cappuccino bar 🙂

After Whole Foods, we went on a walk with Kayla’s baby brother. Look how cute he is! We walked hills around her neighborhood, and you better believe our legs were talkin’

After our walk, we went home and made lunch, which we had been planning all day! We could hardly wait!

We made black bean & chicken quesadillas with grilled onions, guacamole, taco seasoning and cheese all melted together on the inside of a small ezekiel tortilla. Amazing!

Note to self and all of you, if you’re ever making a Grilled Cheese, or Quesadilla, Kayla told me to stick foil over the pan- it helps the cheese melt much better!

We each had half a quesadilla, and then we shared these healthy nachos.

On the nachos, we used almond thins instead of chips, then layered black beans, taco seasoning, cheese, and lots of salsa on top. I honestly didn’t miss the tortilla chips at all, and I felt so much healthier eating them this way!

On the side of our quesadillas we had greek yogurt (instead of sour cream) and salsa. These were SO good and I HIGHLY recommend you all try them! I am so lucky to have a friend with so many healthy ideas!
PS, THOSE NACHOS… SUPERBOWL is tomorrow. How about you make your family a special treat?!


Filed under Breakfast, Lunch, Recommendations from Kayla Ann, Shopping Finds, Snacks