A MoonCats Review: Spring into Summer with Accessories!

I’m excited that I have the opportunity to share a review about MoonCats and their trendy, accessories line! MoonCats has the cutest, fashionable scarves of different colors and textures for all year round. Don’t you just love the name “MoonCats”?

mooncats scarf 1

MoonCats is a fashion accessories brand, selling exclusively online at MoonCats.com! Their super trendy scarves are less than $40 from chunky oblong scarves to wraps and over-sized capes. They also have trendy light weight scarves, super lovely infinity scarves, and even styles for men.

I chose the Navy Nordic infinity scarf. I fell in love with the scarf the moment I saw it and even more in love when I placed it around my neck. It came right in the midst of our “snow storm” so it made me feel all warm and snuggly. I received so many compliments on this scarf. I also love how patriotic and festive it looks and everyone knows I have a thing for prints that are colorful and tribal. The Nordic Snood found here is also another favorite.

Spring may be here, but now is the perfect time to stock up on winter accessories. They have elegant gloves, warm knit winter hats, and stylish headwraps, starting at $24.95. The headwraps are perfect for my naturalistas, because I know I love a beautiful headwrap!

mooncats1

 

The Dots — Cashmere Blend is the absolute cutest! If you love lady bugs, you’ll love this scarf too!

The Dots

Photo: MoonCats.com

 

 

The Aztec Temple scarf is one of my favorites and it’s perfect for Spring!

Aztec Temple

Photo: MoonCats.com

 

This beautiful, Feline Eyes, scarf is perfect for day or night! If you love animal prints, you would also love this jungle themed scarf, The Jungle Patrol.

Feline Eyes Scarf Leopard

Photo: Mooncats.com

 

MoonCats offers FREE shipping to the United States for orders over $50. They were kind enough to share a discount code for my readers to enjoy a 30% discount off on ALL scarves. The code is PRETTYBLOG30OFF! You don’t want to miss out on this offer! Make sure you visit MoonCats.com to find the perfect accessories for spring and summer!

 

Disclaimer: I received a free product from MoonCats for review. All opinions are my own.

 

 

It’s A Meal Prep Party!

Meal Prep Party | My Pretty Brown BlogSo here’s the low-down…I’ve been “saying” that I was going to start meal prepping months ago! I would cook and somehow what was left ended up being devoured. Not to mention one extra serving of fish just doesn’t cut it. Okay, maybe I just didn’t take meal prepping seriously. But then, I didn’t like having to figure out from day to day what I was going to eat for lunch (or dinner). I could take the easy route and just buy frozen meals for lunch, but I wanted a healthier option. Not knocking anyone who does, because sometimes a Smart Ones is what’s on the menu! Well…

My great friend, Leticia, inspired me to get serious about meal prepping. This girl stays on it and she does not deviate. She has the results to prove it! She turned down Krispy Kreme for some grapes! WHO TURNS DOWN KRISPY KREME?! That should be against the law!!! But, I tell you who does…somebody on a mission! I’m gonna be real with y’all…after getting on the scale the other day, I said, “This ain’t gonna cut it”. I knew after my marathon I could gain weight. Well…I did. Not a lot, but enough to make me change my focus. I was getting way too comfortable. My marathon was 3 months ago, so I can’t keep saying I’m still taking time off to recover. As for training, I don’t want to use “I’m carb-loading” as an excuse to pig out before a race. There’s a way to eat clean(er) and still run, crossfit, weight train, etc. 

Don’t get me wrong, I will never be an advocate of deprivation. That’s why those cabbage, applesauce, baby food diets…just don’t work. We need real food! That’s the reason why I love Weight Watchers–nothing is off limits and everything is in moderation. I can easily eat a doughnut or a half a dozen (no judging), but that only derails progress. I’ve heard people say, “Don’t reward yourself with food, you’re not a dog!” Well, of course we’re not dogs…but if you know you want to enjoy a splurge meal or item, then plan accordingly. A sacrifice has to come from somewhere. You know your level of will power and I know mine. If I can go without something, I’ll wait until I REALLY want it—not just because it’s in front of me. 

Sometimes you have to shock your body by kicking in healthier habits that will benefit you for the long haul. Food prepping is actually fun! You feel a sense of accomplishment when you’re done. I’m talkin’ meals for the whole week! My HB was so intrigued by all my little meals and containers sprawled all over the kitchen, I think he wants to join the party!

Meal Prep Party | My Pretty Brown Blog

I pretty much baked everything at the same time. You may have to do two or more cycles depending on how much you want to prepare. My menu consisted of Brussels sprouts, yellow squash, broccoli, boiled eggs, salmon, chicken, brown rice, sweet potatoes, fruit, and mini snack packs. I measured out each baggie on the food scale to make my 100-ish calorie snack bags. You save so much money doing it this way. I never thought I’d love Brussels sprouts either, until I made them for the first time.  Did I mention, as a kid, I wouldn’t dare eat them? Now I love em’! I’ll also be switching up my foods/meals so I won’t get bored.

Meal Prep | My Pretty Brown Blog

If you don’t have a food scale, I encourage you to get one. I absolutely love my Weight Watchers scale and it has become my BFF. It converts into points as well. I measure everything. It amazes me how portions can get out of control, especially in restaurants—but it’s also interesting to see how often times we cheat ourselves. I was testing out a new recipe and I wanted French bread. I was surprised to see how much bread I did actually get, simply by weighing it. Weight Watchers Scale | My Pretty Brown Blog

I’m really excited about this new journey of food/meal prepping! I’ll check back in a little later to share how it has been going. Do you meal prep? What are some of your favorite go-to food prep meals/items?

 

This is happening…I’m Running with the Marines!!!

I’m Running With The Marines!!! I’m so excited y’all!!! I had my eye on this race for about a year. I was torn between this race and another one and the fact that I was considering another marathon…who would have ever guessed it? I guess you can tell that I clearly am not “one and done”. I also knew that for my next race, I really wanted to run for charity. I seriously prayed for the past 6-8 months about choosing the right charity. I wanted it to be right and I wanted a personal connection—and just like that, an opportunity was placed in front of me. So, here it goes…

sherunwiththemariesI am so excited that I will be running in the 40th Marine Corps Marathon as an Ambassador for Team Fisher House and as Champion for our Military Families! I am raising funds and awareness for the Fisher House Foundation, an amazing organization that supports the military families of our wounded warriors when they need it the most—during hospitalization for unexpected injury, disease or illness.

Fisher House provides a home away from home for families of patients receiving medical care at major military and VA medical centers. The homes provide free temporary lodging so military and veterans’ families can be close to their loved ones during a medical crisis.

 

teamfisherhouse

My fundraising goal is $600, but I want to do exceedingly and abundantly above that! My goal is to raise $600 by June 1st! I hope with your help, we can make a difference in the lives of our service members and their families. Running (or walking) a marathon is challenging, but doing it for something GREATER than myself is so rewarding and makes the task ahead seem so small. My Dad, who was also a U.S. Army veteran, would be so proud and happy for me! This is my way to honor him and the countless other service members who have served and continue to service this country. You can find out more about the Fisher House, their awesome programs, and how they are helping our military families here.

Please visit my campaign page to make a donation:  http://www.teamfisherhouse.org/goto/artwalker. Any amount is greatly appreciated. Feel free to share my donation page with your family and friends!

 

Thank you!

 Artney

Baked Parsnip Chips

Baked Parsnip Chips | My Pretty Brown Blog

Parsnip just sounds interesting, doesn’t it? When I first found out what parsnip was, I was hoping that I would like it so I could add it into the rotation. Lucky for me, I attended a Birmingham Foodie event called, Eat Drink Bham (recap coming soon!) and one of the restaurants had a sample for me to try. For those who don’t know, parsnip is a vegetable root that closely resembles a carrot or parsley root. It has a beige-cream color and eaten raw, it has a semi-sweet flavor.

I wanted my first experience with parsnips to be enjoyable. I went with one of my favorite kitchen accessories, the food processor, to make Parsnip Chips! Yummylicious! I have been looking for ways to get in more veggies, so I am happy that these turned out perfect! Eat More Veggies! I must add, I have a serious addiction to Lay’s potato chips. I can’t even have them in my house…period. You know, “you can’t eat just one”. Me = whole bag…so Parsnips Chips are the perfect low-carb snack that satisfies my chip craving simply by making a healthy swap. They are seriously so good!

 Baked Parsnip Chips | My Pretty Brown Blog

When I prepared my “chips” I made them two ways: the first time, I cooked them until they were crispy. They actually taste like kettle cooked chips. The second time, I took them out early and the texture reminded me of thinly sliced potato skins.

Baked Parsnip Chips
Serves 2
A delicious way to enjoy "chips" by making a healthy swap!
Write a review
Print
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
15 min
Total Time
30 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 pound of parsnips, approximately 4
  2. 2 Tbsps of olive oil
  3. Greek seasoning
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425F
  2. Cut thin slices of parsnips using a food processor. If using a sharp knife, carefully cut them into thin slices
  3. Put thinly sliced "chips" in a mixing bowl, then add 2 Tbsps of olive oil and sprinkle with Greek seasoning (sprinkle lightly). Toss them well to make sure all of the chips are coated with seasoning and olive oil
  4. Lay chips in a single layer on a baking sheet (optional: I used parchment paper)
  5. Bake chips for 15-20 minutes until chips have reached your desired crispiness
  6. Serve and enjoy!
Notes
  1. Weight Watchers: 4pp (1 cup)
  2. Chips can burn easily so keep an eye out to see if they are to your desired texture. I tried my chips on the soft and crunchier side and they both are good.
  3. If you leave them in for about 15 minutes and they are still soft, they do harden as they cool.
  4. Parchment paper is optional.
  5. If you want an extra kick, try adding a few shakes of paprika.
My Pretty Brown Blog http://www.myprettybrownblog.com/

 

I’m so happy that I discovered a new way to enjoy “chips”. I can’t wait to create new recipes with my new veggie BFF!

Enjoy!

 

 

 

Because New Workout Gear Is Necessary!

Happy First Day of Spring!

Spring couldn’t get here fast enough! It seems like this year is really flying by. I know we need to take time to smell the roses. Now, we get the opportunity to do just that…outside and in lovely weather! I’m excited about the great things that are in store. The Disneyland Half Marathon 10th Anniversary Weekend is less than six months away. So excited! Also, for my runDisney peeps, don’t forget the Avengers Half Marathon weekend goes on sale April 7th (the day before my birthday…woo-hoo!) and the Walt Disney World Marathon Weekend goes on sale April 28th! You can check out my 2015 WDW Marathon recap here

Happy Spring! It's time to spring into fitness, runDisney races, and get new workout gear! #bondiband #rundisney #fitness | My Pretty Brown Blog

So…I’m sure you’ve heard the saying “summer bodies are made in the winter”. Well, spring has officially sprung! If you fell off during the winter then this is the perfect opportunity to get back on track. It’s going to be beautiful outside…pollen and all! I just added a Stairmill workout into the mix. The Stairmill is pretty intense. Someone called it the “dreadmaster”. I chuckled because it truly owns up to that name. It’s one of those machines that you want to hate, but you just can’t, because it WORKS! You can get that workout here and find out why I’m so happy a new season is here.

You can’t go into a new season without new workout gear! I don’t know about you, but I work harder when I have on cute workout gear. It just makes you feel good! Check out Bondi Band’s newest selection of “No-Slip, No-Drip” athletic headbands and other fashionable and functional apparel. I can’t wait to add to my collection!

I Don't Sweat I Sparkle - Bondi Band | My Pretty Brown Blog

The “I don’t sweat, I sparkle” headband is one of my favorite Bondi Bands. Check out the new design here!

 

Don’t miss out on your chance to win a set of Yurbuds and a Performance Wicking Hat of your choice. All you have to do is “Like” and share the Bondi Band Facebook Fan Page and post a picture of yourself to the page showing off your Bondi Band gear. A winner will be chosen on March 31st!

Bondi Band Athletic Headband and Accessories

 

 

Happy Spring! Do you have any fun events, races, or activities planned?

 

 

Shake It Off, Tone It Up + Stairmill Workout!

I don’t know about you, but I’m so ready for spring! I have been in complete struggle mode the past few weeks. Winter really had me in a slump. Lots of rain, a few snow days…I really needed some vitamin D. Then I realized, I have suffered from SAD. Did you know that SAD existed? It’s called Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), which simply means: you turn into Crabby Patty or you feel sad, anxious, tired, excessively eat with potential weight gain, and have trouble concentrating just to name a few. For me…I’m just ready for spring!

After my marathon, I had the Post-Marathon Blues. I remember my sister saying, “Artney, enjoy this moment! Your race will go by so fast and then it will be over.” Everything she said was true. About a week after my marathon the blues kicked in. You go through vigorous mental and physical training all while building a bond with yourself and your training. You put in days, nights, months of training then the big day comes, your excitement level is on fleek (yes, I actually detest this word, but it worked), then it’s over—just like that. I was sad, a little depressed, and this winter SADness didn’t help. I really enjoyed my sabbatical and not working out, but I can’t believe I’m saying this…I miss working out and I miss the endorphins! Euphoria, where are you? I had to figure out how to get out of this comfortable slump of laziness. It had to start with the renewing of my mind. So, I whipped my bum back into shape mentally and got on the physical train. One foot in front of the other and one day at a time. No More Excuses! 

Shaking Post-marathon blues, Stair Master, Fitness Exercises

Have you ever had that one activity or machine in the gym that you just wanted to run from? Well, mine is the Stairmaster/Stairmill aka the HELL-master! This is one of the hardest machines on earth and 5 minutes is all it takes to have me calling on Jesus. I get bored doing the same thing, so when I found this Stairmill Workout on Pinterest I got excited! But…it’s hard y’all!!! I have to stop mid-way to catch my breath because my heart rate is always off the charts—but it works! I’m not trying to go in too fast, so I’m going to stick with one cycle for the first few weeks then add another, etc. Next time you’re at the gym, try this awesome workout from ToneItUp!

 

 Stairmaster, Stairmill, Fitness Exercises

 

What’s the one workout or machine that you have a love/hate relationship with, but gets the job done?

 

 

More Training and Motivation Tips from Jeff Galloway

A few weeks ago, I came off of my post-marathon sabbatical to run one of my favorite races, the Mercedes Half Marathon. It was also my 7th half marathon to date! I love this race because it was my first half and it’s also held in my hometown, Birmingham, AL. I was able to PR and Jeff Galloway’s Run Walk Run (intervals) helped me achieve it. I mentioned in my earlier post how excited I am to be part of the Jeff Galloway Blogger program sharing training and motivation tips from Jeff. Run Walk Run is a method that is tried-and-true and has helped countless runners meet their goals!

Here are more Training and Motivation Tips to help you stay motivated during your training. 

Run Injury Free: Jeff Galloway Training and Motivation Tips | My Pretty Brown Blog

I use Run Walk Run on all of my long runs. It’s up to each person to decide how fast or slow they would like their long runs to be. I like to pace my runs 1 to 2 minutes slower than race pace. Just remember “slow and steady wins the race”. This is my mantra and I stick to it. I paced myself too fast one time and that’s all it took. When I use Run Walk Run, I recover quicker, have less fatigue, and I’m motivated to get back out there.

We all want to run and stay injury free. You can find Jeff Galloway’s Book Run Walk Run here and Running Injuries here.

 

Run Injury Free: Jeff Galloway Training and Motivation Tips (Part 2) | My Pretty Brown Blog Runners from Austin, Duluth, Denver, Metro Dc, NW Indiana, and Montgomery County, MD – We are coming to you! There is a Galloway Training Program starting near you in the month of March! Check the calendar for more information.

 
 
LAST CHANCE! 
All Roads Lead To Rome!
Deadline extended until March 8th. 
(Time & Space is now limited – 2 slots left)
Sign up at www.RunITALY.com or www.RunROME.com

 

Offer Expires: 3/8/15

 

If you missed my first JG Training and Motivation Tips, you can find them here. Have you dealt with any running-related injuries? What methods did you use to recover and get back to running?