Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Healthy Eating Habits: A Look at My Personal Food Diary










 Alright girls, here's a topic of conversation a lot of you have been asking for! Healthy eating. Let me start off by saying I am not a registered dietitian or doctor, so everything I am laying out today is based solely off my own personal experience. If you're a girl on the go, this blog post should be helpful. I'm the queen of let's eat healthy, but I don't want to clean up a big mess, and I also don't want to be cooking for hours. Convenience is my jam! 

So with that being said, I meal prep on Sundays and eat a lot of the same items during the week. Meal prepping is life changing, ya'll! I'm always ravenous when I get home from work, so if my meal isn't already prepared and ready to be warmed up I typically end up snacking before dinner - and let's be honest, it's probably not the "healthiest" snack. So the best thing I could do for myself was have my meals prepared ahead of time. But what if you don't have time on Sunday? Listen I get it, it was the story of my life last year, and the majority of this year thus far. There are tons of meal prepping services out there that focus on tailored health needs like paleo, gluten free, or just simply healthy eating! I get all of my dinners through Ro (my trainer) here in Charlotte. Meal prep is a service he offers in addition to training and I can't rave about it enough! 

So let's talk about what my days actually look like. Monday-Friday I wake up at 4:45 AM, I'm at work at 7:45 AM and I get home around 5:30 PM. Because I start my days so early, my metabolism gets a kick start and I'm already starting to get hungry around 8:00 AM. I typically workout on an empty stomach in the mornings because I have a hard time eating when I first wake up, but after the gym I tend to feel really hungry so I try to eat breakfast around 8:00 AM. As I mentioned above, eating the same things multiple times in one week doesn't bother me, so on Sundays I will cook enough breakfast for me to eat through Wednesday. Unless it's the weekend I normally eat one of two things for breakfast: smoked salmon on a GG cracker or an egg white souffle. Below are the ingredients for both!

If you haven't heard of GG crackers, believe me when I say you need them! If you're a fan of locks and bagel but hate all the carbs in the bagel, these are a game changer. We love to do Sunday brunch, but it's tough to eat healthy. So, I'll grab a couple of these and throw them in my bag, order locks and bagel at the restaurant and then switch the bagel out for these crackers. They are high in fiber and low  in calories, keeping you fuller longer. They also make it so easy to hit your fiber goal for the day! I usually eat three crackers at a time with one serving of smoked salmon. If you absolutely have to have cream cheese, try substituting for Kite Hills cream cheese like spread. It's made of almond milk and is all around a healthier option. 

If it's an egg white souffle morning, I mix three egg whites together with spinach, boars head Cajun turkey (i just shred it), mushrooms, and onions and bake them in a little white ramekin for 20-30 minutes on 350 degrees. These are so easy to make, and taste delicious. I ran out of egg whites in the picture above, so that one has two egg whites and one regular egg, which works as well! 

Breakfast:
Locks & Bagel:
Smoked Salmon
3 GG Crackers
Kite Hill Chive Cream Cheese style spread
Shallots
Capers 

Egg White Souffle
3 Egg Whites
Boars Head Cajun Turkey shredded
Spinach
Onions 
Mushrooms 

Lunch can be tricky. I'm in sales which means we eat out with clients over lunch daily. In order for me to know exactly what I'm eating, I always stick to a plain salad. Lots of times items on a menu look healthy, however there are tons of ingredients in the dish that aren't listed under the meal description on the menu. A prime example of this is what they cook the items in, lots of times it's butter adding tons of hidden fat to a meal that traditionally should be healthy! So while it sounds boring, I always order a salad with mixed greens or spinach, cucumbers (they hold a lot of water), avocado (healthy fat), quinoa (high in fiber), chicken, and blueberries or strawberries. Skip the cheese! Another easy health hack is to always order the dressing on the side. For me, avocado provides enough moisture to where I only need a tiny bit of dressing. But if you do need the dressing, Balsamic Vinaigrette is your best option. Dressings are loaded with calories and fat, so while your salad is healthy the ranch dressing poured all over it is basically the same as eating a cheeseburger on the side. I like for all of my meals to have healthy portions of protein, fat (healthy fats like avocado), fiber, and greens. 

Lunch
Salad with Grilled Chicken
Mixed Greens or Spinach
One breast of Chicken
1/4 of a Cucumber
1/4 cup Quinoa
Handful of Blueberries 
 1 Tablespoon of Garlic Expressions or Balsamic Vinaigrette
Half of an Avocado

As I mentioned above, I'm always hungry right after work. This is most likely due to how early I start my day, and the fact that I eat lunch relatively early (11:30). So, all of my dinners Monday-Thursday are meal prepped and simple. If you've never made diced sweet potatoes, girl you're missing out! They are my favorite side and again, super easy (I wasn't kidding when I said I like easy). I buy the sweet potatoes already diced up from Whole Foods, put them in a bowl and coat with 1 tablespoon of Avocado oil, toss so all the potatoes are covered, and then lay them out on a lined baking sheet and sprinkle some Himalayan sea salt over them. Then, I bake them for 20-30 minutes on 450 degrees in the oven and they come out like pure crispy goodness! Added perk: it makes your house smell divine too. We almost always use asparagus, broccoli, or broccolini as our vegetable. I love broccoli and broccolini for the gut health it provides and it tastes delicious sauteed with a little lemon and garlic. If you aren't a fan of sweet potatoes, you can sub these out for cauliflower rice from Trader Joes as well. 

Dinner
Chicken with Asparagus or Broccoli and Sweet Potatoes
1 breast of chicken
1 bundle of Asparagus, Broccoli, or Broccolini
3 cups of diced Sweet Potatoes
1 Tablespoon Avocado Oil
Himalayan Sea Salt 


Snacks. Oh how I love them! I need a snack around 10/10:30 AM and again around 3:00 PM. I get these little protein bites from Ro as part of my meal prep with him, however, the recipe is a secret so I'm not 100% sure what's in them. If I had to take a wild guess, its oats, protein powder, almond milk,  a banana and maybe vanilla extract or nutmeg? I make a similar recipe which you can find here! Outside of the protein bites, almonds are another great option and if you have a serious sweet tooth - these are to die for and what you see pictured above.

Snacks
Raw Almonds
Hard Boiled Egg
Hummus
Protein Shake

This post was definitely longer than I intended it to be, so if you're still reading I commend you! I would love your feedback on whether or not these are helpful, and if you're interested in seeing more in the comments below! Have a great week!

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Tuesday, April 17, 2018

My Master Closet Reveal

  

I am so excited to be sharing my closet reveal with you guys! We have been in our new home for a year and a half now, and the master closet has been a topic of conversation for us from the start. To be  honest, I simply have way more stuff than what can actually fit in our current closet, so part of the frustration was simply coming from the fact that I needed to purge. I'm one of those people that has a really hard time purging things that have only been worn once, and I tend to tell myself I'll wear it again even though I probably won't. But, I'm proud to announce that my team started a whole new Instagram page just for that! So if you're interested in my almost new/gently used clothes - check out @shopcheekybeen on Instagram. 

There are a few projects around the house I have been itching to do, but my closet was my main priority. Mainly because Shane and I were bickering over the total disaster it was becoming on a weekly basis, and that alone was driving me nuts. I told myself the second our wedding was over and my expenses could shift a little, the closet would be my first order of business - and so it was!


As I mentioned above, it's small - especially for it being a "master" closet. Not only that, but it's also poorly designed in terms of organization. So, insert Whitney Hahn of California Closets! Whitney of California Closets Charlotte came over to my house one afternoon to take a look at the situation, and immediately went to work on a design that was not only functional, but also pretty to look at and emulated my vision for the space. I was really impressed by how quickly she could draw up an Autocad design that totally brought my ideas to life!


(Before and After: The wall to the left of the entry way to the closet0

(Before and After: The back wall of the closet and what you face when walking in)

         
(Before and After: My shoe wall! This is where I had all my shoes arranged)

 Once we nailed down the actual design, I met her at their showroom to pick out hardware and finishes. It was so helpful to be able to see all the options on an already finished design in the showroom! I knew I wanted a white closet (our walls are Benjamin Moore Revere Pewter, so white provides a beautiful contrast), and gold hardware - but the knobs for the drawers were my favorite final touch! 

The entire process was so much easier than I anticipated. Installation took about six hours and both installers were friendly, professional, and detail oriented! Overall, I'm so happy we chose to work with California Closets and would recommend Whitney Hahn to anyone looking to redesign their space. So much so, that I have actually paired up with the Charlotte location to offer $100 off your next project when you mention The Cheeky Been upon booking an appointment by phone! 





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*In partnership with California Closets

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

Free People Boho Bodysuit








Spring, is that you?! Although the temperatures in Charlotte don't indicate signs of spring, the flowers sure do! I drive past this wall of Azaleas around this time every year, and every year I have to stop and get a picture in front of them! They weren't quite at their peak yet in these photos, but I guarantee by the middle of this week they will be stopping people dead in their tracks!

I have a ton of warm weather trips coming up, so I'm shopping for mainly summer clothes at this point - which is how I came across this floral bodysuit. The second it popped up on my screen I knew  I needed to add it to my current collection of yellow. I don't think I've ever really worn yellow, or been drawn to it until this year, and now I can't seem to get away from it! Maybe it's because it reminds me of warmer days and sunshine? Who knows. But what I do know, is that you need this whole get up. It's so perfect for brunch with the girls, a lunch date, or really anything summer related for that matter. Personally, I've always got my eyes peeled for a good brunch outfit. So we will jut file this one away under "must wear to brunch." The top runs true to size (I'm wearing a small) and so does my jean skirt. If you don't own a jean skirt, invest in a good one. They never go out of style, and they last for forever. If I can wear it season after season for years to come, it's worth it to splurge on one of quality. Quality over quantity, always!

I hope you girls are having a good week so far! I'm headed to Miami this weekend so I've been busy squeezing in workouts, meal prepping, and planning out my outfits. I always plan my outfits way too last minute, so I'm actually proud of the fact that I'm doing it proactively this go around - feels good!

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Monday, March 26, 2018

Floral Bodysuit










Ya'll Monday is over! Can we get a hallelujahhh!? I woke up this morning with a sore throat and body aches - praying I am not getting sick again! Between my corporate job, renovations around the house, traveling, and keeping up with social media I feel like my blog has taken a little bit of a hit in terms of consistency. I am hoping to getting back to my normal three posts a week within the coming months, though - so please bare with me!

Now let's talk about this little floral number! Anything bright and fun stands out to me in a store so I was immediately drawn to the print. So much so, that I also bought it in the kimono version and wore it over my swimsuit in the Dominican Republic. I've worn this outfit a few times now, and it's perfect for going out to dinner in! It's also really comfortable. The bodysuit is made up of stretchy material so it has a ton of give and breathes nicely because let's be honest, once the drinks start flowing my body temperature tends to rise too, lol! The only thing better than the print, is the price - you really can't beat a good top you can wear repeatedly for $60. 

That's all for today friends. I hope everybody is off to a great start to the week, and has their fingers crossed for some warmer spring-like weather!

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Sunday, March 11, 2018

A Girls Weekend at The Inn at Willow Grove


Happy Sunday! We've been traveling like crazy these last few months, so you likely noticed along the way that I spent a weekend in Virginia at the Inn at Willow Grove. I have never really spent any significant time in Virginia, so I was excited to have the opportunity to explore, and what better reason than a girls weekend!?

When I think of a girls weekend, I think wine, the spa, great food, and beautiful accommodations. This weekend was just that! The Inn at Willow Grove is the first boutique hotel I've ever stayed at! Lots of "firsts" here! It's located in Orange, VA about 30ish minutes from Charlottesville, and is surrounded by some of Virginia's best wineries. The hotel was recently awarded #1 hotel in the South and #3 best hotel in the country! If I'm not mistaken, it's also known for being one of the most romantic. Outside of a girls weekend, this would be the perfect location for a couples getaway. 


WHAT WE DID:

VISITED MONTPELIER PLANTATION
We began our weekend with a tour of Montpelier Plantation. This is President James Madison's home and only a short ride away from the hotel! I'll be the first to admit I'm no history buff, so the walking tour was actually refreshing and interesting to listen too. It sort of felt like a class field trip with all the girls! 


WINE TASTING AT BARBOURSVILLE VINEYARDS
From there, we took a shuttle over to Barboursville Vineyards. If I could, I'd visit a vineyard every weekend throughout the spring and fall, so this was my favorite stop on our itinerary! The views, service (we loved chatting with winemaker Luca Paschina), food, and especially the wine were amazing! I always take a bottle or two home from the vineyards we visit, but I liked them all at Barboursville, so it was hard to choose! The passion that went into this place really stood out to me. 



MASSAGE AT MILL HOUSE SPA
Our last stop was a visit to the Mill House Spa for a Signature Massage. After a long day of sightseeing, it was so nice to unwind and relax for a few hours! They also have a cozy little room with a fireplace that Bailey and I hung out in for awhile after our treatment. Your trip isn't complete without making a stop here. 


WHERE WE ATE:

DINNER AT FORKED ON MAIN
Our first dinner of the weekend was on Friday night at Forked On Main! It's about a 10 minute drive from the hotel, and located in the quaint town of Orange, VA. Everything ranging from the cocktails, to the appetizers, through our entree was delicious! The owner of the hotel actually also owns Forked On Main, so we were able to try a wide variety of options on the menu and you can't go wrong with anything! 

LUNCH AT BARBOURSVILLE VINYARDS
I previously mentioned the food at Barboursville Vineyards. We had lunch there on Saturday which was spectacular! It was a true Italian style lunch complete with homemade pasta, and again - very good!

DINNER AT VINTAGE
Saturday evening we enjoyed dinner at the Inn at Willow Groves restaurant called Vintage. I had a fantastic cosmopolitan here, and rounded out the dinner with gold dusted chocolate covered strawberries, whaaat?? Mind blown. We liked Vintage so much, we went back for brunch the following morning, and indulged in blueberry pancaked and a basket full of delicious pastries. I highly recommend stopping by this restaurant even if you aren't lodging with the hotel. 



This is such a great little getaway spot! If you're looking for something cozy, low-key, and charming - this is your hotel. Those of you who know me, also know I'm a big time coffee lover - so I wanted to make it a point to mention that the hotel delivers fresh beignets and french press coffee to your room every morning. Yum! Right up my alley. The accommodations were fabulous. The beds were comfortable, the rooms were modern with luxury appliances and amenities, and I especially loved having a fireplace - all the cozy feels!

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*In partnership with The Inn at Willow Grove

Monday, February 19, 2018

Distressed Denim in NYC










Wow, what - a - week! I don't know about you guys, but this week was especially emotional for me for some reason! One of my clients at work told me it has to do with an eclipse that's going on. I know nothing about those sorts of things, but I'm taking her word for it because it was a roller coaster week in terms of ups and downs! Work has been taxing, we found out Shane's dad had a heart attack at the beginning of the week, and we randomly came home to find part of our fence torn down - which apparently happened during a police chase while we were out of town!? Like I said, the emotions were at an all time high. 

Outside of the craziness, Shane and I took a quick trip to New York for the weekend as a late Valentines celebration. He has been traveling a ton for work lately, so our time together has been minimal since our honeymoon in January. A lot of you know we got engaged in New York City (you can read that story here), so it holds a special place in our heart. It's also so easy and inexpensive to get too from Charlotte, so we thought why not!? We really wanted to maximize our time there this go around, so we went into it with somewhat of a plan in terms of where we wanted to eat and what we wanted to see! We had never been to Top of The Rock so we decided to head up there Saturday afternoon. The view from the top is absolutely stunning! Although it was extremely cold and windy - so be prepared if you're headed there during the winter. 

I had lots of questions on my jeans while we were there from stories! They're only $88 and I've had them for about a year and a half now. Outside of a dark wash pair, these are probably the most worn jeans in my closet and they've held up great! Lucky for you all, they're still in stock in all sizes here, and they run true to size.

This week we are trading in our coats and sweaters, for shorts and swimsuits! Stay tuned to see where we are headed next!

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