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Posted by & filed under Food.

Ever consider having a food truck come by your house?

Yep. It’s a thing!

I got together with a few local food bloggers for a Sunday afternoon with Tex’s Tacos Food Truck.

Tex’s Tacos is a Nueva Texicana food truck.

 

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I started things off with the lime fries. They are officially my new favorite thing! The margarita salt and lime flavors add a unique twist that make them hard to stay away from. Too delicious!

Limefries.thegreatdanajI also tried the chicken quesadilla which was cheesy and tasted great with salsa on top! I wanted to taste the veggie quesadilla but my stomach politely said no more. If you run across Tex’s Tacos at a food truck park or party, it won’t take much to fill you up!

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Learn more about Tex’s Tacos Food Truck here.

Thank you to Tex’s Tacos for treating us to Sunday Funday right in the front yard. Huge thanks to Lauren from prettysouthern.com for the hosting all of us.

Disclosure: I was invited to try Tex’s Taco Food Truck for free. As always, all opinions are my own!

Posted by & filed under Marketing & Social Media.

Being in marketing, I always see the Super Bowl as a holiday. I always look forward to the commercials, but this year was totally different. The game had a devastating end, in my opinion. I didn’t see that Patriots win happening, but it’s the first Super Bowl where I actually was into the game from start to finish. They both fought until the end. I loved halftime!

I’m a big Katy Perry fan. Remember my review of Part of Me? I see her album Teenage Dream as a pop classic in my book. And of course, Missy Elliott is the best.

I was so excited to see her up there. Her music is just classic and it still sounds like the future despite being almost twenty years old.

That was a lovely surprise! I can’t really think of many Missy songs that I don’t like. The first game where I wondered what was going on with the commercials. There wasn’t much creativity at all. I was disappointed. A few of the commercials that I DID love?

1. The domestic violence commercial with the actual 911 call. It definitely got my attention. It gave me chills.

2. The Chevy 2015 Colorado commercial where it looked like the power went out. We definitely had a momentary freak out! Well done Chevy.

3. Kim Kardashian for T-Mobile. I like how the campaign was well thought out. After the commercial, the data stash continued on Twitter and kimsdatastash.com. Plus, the hashtag was sponsored through yesterday and Kim participated in a Twitter chat with T-Mobile as well. I’ve seen T-Mobile ads on Google and YouTube too. Well done.

4. Kia Sorento – the car looked so nice against that snow! Plus Pierce Brosnan. Yes.

5. BMW i3 – This was a cool ad with the flashback footage featuring Katie Couric and Bryant Gumbel 21 years ago. And who knew Katie Couric could twerk. Lol.

As always, there were some odd commercials like the Nationwide one. Very strange that one with the child being dead. Had me thinking about that movie The Sixth Sense. Super Bowl ads are supposed to be light hearted, in my opinion. That Lindsay Lohan ad was a miss in my opinion too.

And of course, I loved the Like a Girl commercial from Always! That phrase is so loaded with negative connotations. It was nice to see them put a positive spin on it. I always see my running photos post race and think that I should look more like a super star when I’m running. It’s easy to get caught up in comparing my post race photos to professionals who some how make running look effortless. It’s definitely not an effortless activity for me. But I like running and I’m glad that I started doing it a few years ago in preparation for my very first half marathon. It’s better to do it like a girl than not at all! More power to the ladies.


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 Me at the Disney Princess Half Marathon in 2013

Posted by & filed under Life & More.

Yesterday, at church we found out that today is the most depressing day of the year. It’s the end of January and New Year’s Resolution efforts have died down. I can’t speak for everyone else, but I can speak for myself and say I definitely slipped up on some of my goals during the second week of this month. Most importantly, I was able to identify the reason I failed:

Over scheduled: During the week, I spent my mornings exercising and writing. Then after work I had a packed schedule as well. I didn’t schedule time for reflection, reading, being social and it really caught up to me.

So, I’m not ready to throw in the towel on my resolutions, but I am ready to make changes and improvements based on this discovery. I’ve been reading this new book lately called Manhood by Terry Crews. Don’t worry, I’ll give you guys a full review soon. Just wanted to share some of his words of wisdom on today for those of you out there who have given up on your resolutions or dreams because of setbacks.

 

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What resolution are you motivated to pick back up? It’s not too late. Happy Monday!

 

 

Posted by & filed under Life & More.

It’s Friday. Heyyyyy! I’m singing because I am so glad today is here. This has been a long week for me and I’m overjoyed that it is Friday.

Here are a few of my favorite things from this week.

1. Lavender Oil

I burned my arm this week while cooking. Lavender oil smells so good and helps prevent scars. I’ve also been putting lavender on my scalp mixed with coconut oil and it’s so soothing.

Radha Beauty Lavender Oil

I started using this Radha Lavender Oil this week

2. Snapchat

I’ve been posting snaps everyday. It’s quick and easy. Plus, I like following my friends, family and companies on there too.

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A few of my many snaps this week. If you’re on Snapchat, my username is thegreatdanaj. Let’s share snaps!

3. College Nationals Throwback Week

So, this week is UCA College Nationals. I competed for 3 years at UCA Nationals at Disney World in Orlando during college. It always falls during Martin Luther King weekend. Two years back to back we won! It’s been fun reminiscing this year and every year by throwing up old photos and pictures of our championship rings. I miss those days! Not sure I can still bust out a back tuck, but I can still stunt. It made me remember how I first decided that I would go to West Georgia one night while watching them win nationals on ESPN. Watching the squad this year made me feel like we really started something there and that it’s a legacy that will continue on for years to come!

 

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Just before finding out we won in 2006

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In 2007, posing with cheer alums

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17 National titles in our entire program between two squads! Pushing to make that 19 this weekend! Go Wolves!

4. Jane the Virgin

I have been watching Jane the Virgin since the premiere episode. The show is hilarious and unique. I like the style and telenovela vibe. I loved seeing the clip of Gina Rodriguez, who plays Jane, winning her Golden Globe. It was beautiful! In her speech, she said that the award meant the world to her Latino community.

“This award is so much bigger than myself. It represents a culture that wants to see themselves as heroes,” Rodriguez said. “My dad used to tell me, ‘Today’s a great day, you can and you will,’” she said. “Well, dad, today’s a great day, and I can and I did!”

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Have you watched Jane the Virgin? You definitely should!

5. Cashew Milk

I stopped buying milk long ago. I alternate between almond and coconut milk. I found this new option from a person that I follow on Instagram. I like the fact that cashew milk has a thicker consistency more in alignment with whole milk than almond milk. It’s so creamy! It goes nicely with everything, even hot cocoa. I can’t really get with almond or coconut milk in hot cocoa. Just doesn’t taste that great.

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That’s all for this week! Have you tried anything new lately?

Have a great weekend.

Posted by & filed under Fitness, Reviews.

I’m a big fan of chia seeds. Over the last couple of months I have incorporated them into chia seed pudding for breakfast. They are filling and have lots of health benefits. I used to just think of Chia Pets whenever I heard the word chia. You know:

Cha-Cha-Cha-Chia!

I was that person who used to sample the chia seeds. I didn’t know it then, but chia seeds are good for you and not just fun. Chia seeds have minimal calories, fiber and protein.

So, I was excited when Mamma Chia reached out to me about trying their new Clean Energy Drink.

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Some facts about Mamma Chia Energy beverage:

– 4g complete protein
– Natural caffeine
– 2500mg Omega-3s
– Antioxidants
– Gluten-Free & Vegan

I like having chia seeds in the morning because they give me an energy boost. I used to add chia seeds to water, but this tastes way better! It’s also a filling drink. I feel satisfied after drinking.

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The Cherry Charge was my favorite. I tried it over the weekend!

The drinks retail for $2.99 a pop. I’ve seen Mamma Chia at my local Target and Whole Foods. I like to workout before work and I enjoyed drinking this right after as I get ready or at my work desk.

Have you ever tried chia seeds for energy? If not, you definitely should!

 

*I was given Mamma Chia drinks to try for review purposes. All opinions are my own!

Posted by & filed under Life & More.

Happy Friday y’all.

This week felt long and cold. Temperatures fell into the teens here in Georgia. I”m thankful there was no precipitation. I don’t like driving on black ice since I had my first accident on it five years ago.

I have decided to get back to doing Friday Favorites again. I feel like I’ve come across so many things lately that I would like to share.

Sizzlefish 

On Black Friday, I purchased my first order of Sizzlefish. I like the variety of fish and shellfish included in the pack.

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My entire order of Sizzlefish. I ordered the Paleo Prime option. The sale price was $61 for Black Friday, original price is $91.95

I like being able to have different types of fish throughout the week! It’s nice to not have to buy and prepare the same protein that I have to eat for days! I can remove the fish that I want from the freezer and eat it within three days. So, it’s okay if I change my mind. SFMeals.thegratdanaj

Two of my Sizzlefish meals! On the left: salmon, Brussels sprouts, and honey roasted parsnips

On the right: Fish in a bag cod, slow cooker collard greens and black eyed peas (post New Year’s)


Gilmore Girls

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I just finished watching the entire 7 seasons on Netflix. I forgot how great Gilmore Girls was. I stopped watching when Rory went to college, so it was nice to watch that part for the first time. I caught so many messages that I missed when I was younger. Lorelai was an amazing mom who really instilled hardwork and independence in her daughter. I didn’t like how it ended though. I knew Rory wasn’t going to go for being engaged to Logan. I thought that somehow Jesse would come back into the picture. I felt Jesse was really the best match out of all of her boyfriends. #TeamJesse Her mom knew Logan proposing wasn’t the best idea too. It was glaringly obvious that Lorelai never wanted to get or be married, so that one was understandable. I also enjoyed reliving the often tense but loving relationship between Rory and her grandparents. It made me remember my grandparents back when I had one on one time them when I was very young. I really miss them!

Erin Condren Life Planner

This is my second Erin Condren Life Planner. I loved the one I purchased for 2014. I even purchased one of her address books for my mom’s birthday last summer.

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The Erin Condren address book that I purchased for my mom.

 

My 2015 planner

I like the fact that there’s tons of space in the planner to write down everything! The planner is not too big or too small.

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Jessie Ware – Tough Love

I’ve been discovering new artists on Spotify recently. One of my most recent favorites happens to be Jesse Ware. I really love her CD Tough Love. It’s R&B easy listening. The album is about relationships and love. If you’re into that kind of music, then I highly recommend it. I love listening to entire albums when I’m writing or hanging out around the house. Spotify is free!

 

What’s new in your world?

Posted by & filed under Life & More.

Happy New Year folks! My new year started with a four mile Resolution Run. Yep, I am that person who woke up on New Years Day to run a four mile race after champagne at midnight.I finished with a time of 42:12. My mom signed our whole family up for this race. There were at least 5 different hills and it was tough. I had a quick stop for a stretch and water, but outside of that, I pushed through!

 

 

Starting the year with a run first thing got me motivated to get back on top of my goals for the rest of the year. In fact, after I had lunch with my family and came home for a nap, that’s exactly what I did. I started thinking about my plan for the next year towards the end of 2014. I’m happy to share that I’ve made significant progress so far. I made my vision board and plan to hang it up in my bedroom. There are four specific changes that I plan to share, for now:

4Goals

1. Three new hairstyles – I feel like my hair hasn’t changed much over the last few years. I want to change the style up three different times in 2015. New color, styles, and maybe a cut. We will see!

2. Work style – I worked from home and was a contractor for some time. Now, I work in an office with a laid back dress code. This has caused my work style to slack off. Just because the dress code says I can dress down, doesn’t mean I should. I want to get out of the rut of wearing leggings and get back to dressing up. I like my work wardrobe and want to put more effort back into it.

3. Four Weekly Workouts – Over the last few months I have been working to get four workout days in consistently each week. I plan to continue sharing that process.

4. Two new books per month – Since I decided to get back into reading in November, I’ve finished three great books. I miss blogging about book reviews here too. Make sure to follow me on Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn for details about what I’ve been reading.

 

What resolutions have you made for this year?

Posted by & filed under Life & More.

It’s really easy to pretend that the holidays are holly and jolly and merry and bright. But sometimes they aren’t. It feels like a season full of worry and stress. It takes work to keep a positive vibe going. Earlier this month, I went to an EFT class. EFT stands for emotional freedom technique. During the class, everyone went around talking about the top motivators of stress during the holidays. When it comes to stress, it is easy to feel like we are all alone, but in all honesty we aren’t. So many people at the class talked about different areas where they feel stressed most during the holidays.

– Financial
– Family
– Purchasing the right gift
– Weight gain
– Depression
– Bad memories of holidays past
– Loneliness
– Traveling

There were more. Trust me. With twenty of us in the room, we all had our own areas and then there were some that we could identify with. This holiday season, I have been working on keeping my stress levels to a minimum. Here are 7 tips on how to prevent being a Grinch this holiday season.

 

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1. Essential Oils – I’ve been adding essential oils to my showers and laundry. I put lavender in with my sheets and towels. Jasmine and eucalyptus work well inside the shower. The scents help me relax.

2. Exercise – I really made it a point to increase my exercise. Over the last couple of weeks, I have incorporated Piyo into my routine and increased my weekly mileage. Today, I started a new weight training routine! For me, I love early morning workouts. Right when I wake up in the morning at 5 AM. I notice a huge difference in my energy levels throughout the day and my mood as well. Usually around mid afternoon I feel drained but when I do the morning workouts, I feel much better! I have worked my way up to 4/5 weekday mornings with Saturday body pump and Sunday long runs. I also really like long walks with the right playlist.

3. Reading – I have made it a point to start reading everyday. I set a goal to finish out a book I started a few months ago called The Gifts of Imperfection I made it a goal to finish the book before the end of the year. I take the book everywhere I go and it keeps me off of my phone and focused on reading.

4. Resolutions – Focusing on your vision for the future helps. I feel like I’ve been working on my resolutions and vision for the past couple of months. Especially after Refresh Summit. I’m more than okay with focusing on that and not being in a bad mood.

5. Pump up the music – I have been making new playlists and listening to music outside of my comfort zone on Spotify. It’s fun to have new playlists to rotate during workouts. I also have themed lists that work well when I’m relaxing or at work. Right now, I’m trying to get as much play as possible out of my holiday playlists.

6. Eat well – Since I set a goal to make most of my meals at home, I try to make healthy options. I like being able to have citrus foods and fruits daily. I also try to get lots of produce in and limit sweets. This helps balance out all of the sampling that I do at parties and the sweet treats that we have been having at work.

7. Have a relaxed schedule – I made it a point to start my holiday shopping in November. So, I haven’t felt the holiday stress or rush at all this month. I have tried to avoid the traffic and crowds at all cost. Traffic is stressful, and I really appreciate not having to be bothered with it in order to shop.

 

These are my seven ways to stay full of holiday glee. So, how are you guys holding up against the holiday stress?

Posted by & filed under Life & More.

I don’t want a lot for Christmas. However, because my birthday falls just after Christmas day and just before New Years, if I ask for nothing I run the risk of missing out. For most of my life, I’ve received Christmas/Birthday gifts which comes with the territory when you have a December birthday. I get it now that I’m older and I’m super thankful to get anything at all. I enjoy shopping and picking out thoughtful items for other people now.

Here are a few items on my wishlist for this year’s Christmas/Birthday:

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Steve Madden
Tocean bootsGarmin VivofitAlex and Ani Trident braceletJ. Crew Masterpiece tray
There Was a Little Girl – Brooke Shields Henri Bendel Hot Buttered Rum candle
BosuAthleta Striped Strength hoodieBose Soundlink

Posted by & filed under Fitness.

A few weeks ago, I saw a post on Instagram from Refresh Summit promoting one last spot. On a whim, I responded. I’ve been following Bobbi’s blog for years and I’ve wanted to go to a conference like Refresh for some time. After some reflection time, I registered.

The drive up wasn’t so bad. A little over 4 hours from Atlanta. I arrived at Deer Run Retreat just before dark:

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I’m so thankful that I took a leap and took a chance on going. For the first time in 2014 I jumped out and started living completely on my own. I’m still getting used to the silence and the quietness that comes with it. For a time, I couldn’t really enjoy or embrace it. At Refresh, I realized how much more comfortable I have become with embracing that silence as stillness. There’s beauty and knowledge in those still moments that I’ve been avoiding.

Let me just warn you guys, I didn’t go to Refresh to “be engaged, plugged in, or on”. I love social media, but because it’s part of my job and I have a blog, sometimes I just want to be “off”. I just want to disconnect from it all a little. I didn’t plan to document the entire experience on social media channels. I never saw it as that sort of conference. I saw Refresh as a time to get away from it all. A time to reset my thinking before entering into the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. The whole thing was intimate and the close quarters of the lodge really made us all connect even more.
Favorite Refresh Summit Moments:

– How to Read the Bible – I really enjoyed this session with Amia explaining how to read the bible. She told us to think of the bible as a letter from God to us. I never looked at it that way.

– PiYo – I tried it first time during the weekend. I’m officially a fan! I’ve been searching for an Atlanta class to join. Reina was a great teacher.

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I’m on the pink mat with the bright shoes! Photo from my roommate Jolene

– Group zumba – I’m always down for a zumba class. All of us danced it out to a couple of songs including “No Place I’d Rather Be” and we ended things right with “Shake it Off”.

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– Sleep – I slept so peacefully there. It was deep, deep sleep that I haven’t been able to have in a long time. I spent many nights up late writing/brainstorming and working on my eGuide prior to Refresh. It was nice to sleep without noise and vivid dreams. It was wonderful to wake up refreshed instead of tossing and turning through the night.

–  The Stories – Getting to know new people and listening to everyone’s story. Many of us are going through some of the same challenges. Emotional, physical, and spiritual challenges. Refresh Summit allowed us to share those challenges and relate to each other freely. That doesn’t always happen in day to day life.

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– Food Prep – I picked up some great tips from Brittany during the food prep session. I’ve been telling you guys how I really want to get better at prepping my food for the week in advance. I appreciated Brittany’s tips, creative preparations and her knowledge about nutrition.

I won this book by Jeremy Scott. It’s on my fall reading list now:

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I left Deer Run full of gratitude. I’m so thankful for this group of people. For all of the prayers, conversations and understanding. I’m thankful for Heather, who reached out and made me feel welcome right after I registered. For the opportunity to attend and for our amazing sponsors who donated food and products that I am still using! Attending Refresh made me focus on what’s next and preparing for 2015.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone.