Life Lately

It's been quite a while since I've done one of these posts, but always fun to update you guys on the daily happenings and what's going on in my life lately. It's been a busy couple months to say the least! Lots of updates and new stuff going on that I can't wait to fill you all in on! You can also see daily updates on my Instagram

The Casual Classic | Life Lately

In case for some reason you do NOT follow me on Instagram, you may not know about this update... We adopted a PUP!!! Her name is Luna, and we are beyond obsessed with this little girl. We've had her for about 4 months now, so this isn't new news, but wanted to make sure you guys all knew about it. We found her via Rescue Dogs Rock (an adoption agency in NYC), who were absolutely wonderful to work with. I'd highly recommend them if you're looking to adopt - they've got over 150 dogs available and some amazing options. Luna has settled in so well in NYC, and loves snuggles 24/7 (she sleeps with us every night and if we're on the couch, so is she). She already has numerous nicknames, which consist of: The Lune, Looney, Luna the Tuna, Toons, Tuna, Little Fish (don't ask), and the list goes on.

The Casual CLassic | Life Lately

Here's another shot... Just because.

The Casual CLassic | Life Lately

It was FREEZING in NYC over the weekend - almost unbearable with the wind! I trekked out to Brooklyn to do my absolute favorite workout class with a friend of mine. (Wearing this coat and these boots). 

The Casual Classic | Life Lately

I've had such a travel bug lately. Nick and I were gone every single weekend in December - it was a bit ridiculous. One of the highlights was our weekend at this amazing dog friendly hotel in Vermont. Look at how happy Luna is on our road trip!! I've been carrying this bag non-stop since I got it for Christmas. It is just to DIE for. I wish I could have every color. These shoes are also the perfect travel flat! Coming up on the travel list is Vermont this weekend, Telluride in the beginning of February, Cuba in April, and then Napa Valley in May! Also if you're looking for some travel inspiration as well as the best road trip idea EVER, check out this post

The Casual Classic | Life Lately

If you know me, you know I practically live on avocado toast (we eat it for dinner at least once a week if not more). This one is gluten free bread coated with coconut oil and a healthy dose of mashed avocado. I throw some hemp seeds on the avocado with a bit of himalayan salt, and a soft fried or poached egg on top. It is SO. GOOD. My new year's resolution this year is to clean up my diet even more. I've cut out gluten, limited dairy, and eliminated all refined sugars. Read more about some simple ways to get healthy and get your body back on track here!

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Another goal of mine is to improve my yoga practice, which to me means to start nailing the inversions! I signed up for an inversion workshop in NYC in February - join me!

The Casual Classic | Life Lately

I got new shades, and I'm obsessed. They're so perfect (and were also on sale)! The above is a shot from our trip to Naples for New Years eve. We had such a blast relaxing, going to the beach, and checking out the local fitness scene. I love visiting local yoga studios - they're all so unique and usually end up being quite awesome. If you're ever in Naples, definitely go to the Yoga Loft. I LOVED the heated power yoga!!

The Casual Classic | Life Lately

I made my famous Kombucha cocktails for New Year's Eve and they were a hit. If you're looking to have a drink, this is a super refreshing way to have a cocktail without the bad side effects or guilt. I'll post the recipe this week for you guys, so stay tuned!

The Casual Classic | Life Lately

We FINALLY got some snow in NYC. There is nothing I love more than this city blanketed in some fresh snow. So beautiful.

The Casual Classic | Life Lately

This was a super popular outfit of mine this month, and also one of my favorites. Funny thing tough was that it was something I just threw on last minute since I was trying to dress a little better than the leggings and oversized sweaters I had been wearing to work on repeat. I get in a little style rut in the winter sometimes because I tend to be on the cold side all the time, so the only things I like to wear are warm, soft, cozy, bulky, heavy items. Luckily for me (and unlucky for my wallet), I discovered Kit & Ace last year, which I am absolutely ADDICTED to. I got the scarf wearing here from them last year, but they have this version now, and a ton of great stuff on sale too. I may have just ordered these sweats as a birthday present to myself... Now I'll officially be wearing sweats to work on the reg. Sorry I'm not sorry!

The Casual CLassic | Life Lately

Adding on to the athleisure obsession above... I stumbled across Brazil Wear leggings recently, as well as a few other workout brands. I really have found myself just living in leggings and cozy sweats recently, but maybe that's due to the winter weather... I'm so excited that brands are coming out with some really awesome pieces that make you want to wear them outside of the gym! A few on my list are these awesome zipper leggings (NEED!!!) and this striped pair that have gone viral via Instagram. I have one go-to pair that I legitimately wear almost every day of the week (embarrassing - but I own more than one pair I swear!), which are the Lululemon Align pant. These are the softest, best leggings I've ever put on my body. Buy them.

The Casual Classic | Life Lately

Last but not least, I wanted to fill you all in on some of my favorite scents I've come across recently. I've heard of Byredo, but never purchased because it was a bit on the pricey side. I had a friend who had about 10 of them, so I was recently trying on all the different scents. I fell in LOVE with "Mojave Ghost". Literally the best thing I've ever smelled. I know perfumes are pretty toxic, so I try to mix it up a bit with essential oils as well. The Ajai roll-on above is the most incredible scent. I also love Tata Harper's stress remedy for days I'm feeling a little wound tight.

Pumpkin Risotto with Pancetta and Sage

Pumpkin Risotto / The Casual Classic

Gotta love a yummy comfort food, especially a "healthified" option! This isn't in the post holiday detox plan really (it's a little too carb heavy, plus there is some dairy), but it's a good recipe to save for those nights where you're just craving something warm and comforting... Or if you aren't detoxing post holidays, then whip this up right this instant! Honestly, all the ingredients in this are pretty darn good for you. I didn't use any cream, milk or butter for the risotto, and it still came out delicious and creamy. 

As usual, this dish is gluten free and could be dairy free if you want to omit that too. I usually don't see anything wrong with adding a little high quality/organic cheese to a dish every so often. Just don't make it a daily occurrence! Recipe below. Let me know how you like it!

Pumpkin Risotto / The Casual Classic

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups rice (I use Trader Joes organic wild, sprouted rice)
  • 3/4 cup canned pumpkin
  • Chopped pancetta (however much you want really)
  • 1 red onion
  • 4 cloves garlic
  • Large bunch of fresh sage
  • Organic chicken or bone broth
  • 1/2 cup grated or shaved parmesan cheese
  • Ghee
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt & pepper (Himalayan) 

Directions:

  1. Heat olive oil & ghee in a large pan and add the onion. Cook until translucent. Add garlic cloves (minced or chopped very fine). Season with salt and pepper to taste. Add the rice and sauté for a couple more minutes so rice is slightly toasted. 
  2. Pour the chicken broth into the pan and cook per instructions for rice (for the rice I used, I believe it was 2 cups of broth for 1.25 cups of rice). Stir occasionally until all liquid has been absorbed (about 25 minutes).
  3. While the rice is cooking, in a separate pan, fry the pancetta until crispy. Remove from the pan, but don't remove the leftover fat. Use that to cook the sage and make it super crispy!
  4. Once the sage is done cooking, I threw the pine nuts into the pan and cooked them just a bit so they were crunchier.
  5. Once the rice is almost done cooking, add the canned pumpkin to the mixture and cook for a few more minutes until everything is heated and mixed well. Season with more salt and pepper if needed.
  6. Once everything is ready, add the rice mixture to a bowl. Top with parmesan, pancetta, sage, and pine nuts, and enjoy!

16 Ridiculously Easy Ways to Get Healthy FAST!

It's that time of year where everyone jumps on the healthy bandwagon. Detoxes, cleanses, fasts, and so on are selling like crazy as everyone is trying to get themselves back on track after the holidays. I have to admit, I'm not a big fan of the crazy strict cleanses. I believe in getting back on track and cutting out the bad stuff, but a full cleanse where you need to follow a program, drink juice at every meal, or shakes three times a day is usually too tough on your body and does more harm than good. In saying that, I'll let you guys in on the little secrets I do to get myself back on track after indulging in too many desserts and sugary drinks. These are all little tweaks you can make to your diet and lifestyle for the long term, which will benefit your body and overall health way more than a 3 day juice cleanse would. 

  1. Start your day with warm water and fresh squeezed lemon. I will usually make a detox tea in the morning (I like this one and this one), and will just add fresh lemon to the tea. I also include some Chlorella and collagen powder, both of which add a bunch of protein, help to detoxify the body, and aid in digestion. This is my favorite drink to start the day with. Super nutritious and filling!
  2.  Oil pulling is another super beneficial detox method. I do this a couple times a week, but try to do it more during times like this when I'm needing the extra help. You want to do this as soon as you wake up, and for about 15 minutes. For more info, check out my oil pulling post here.
  3. Sweat it out as often as possible. I HIGHLY recommend using an infrared sauna if you have one available to you. If you live in NYC, there is Higher Dose (a bit pricey), or I go to UWS Yoga and Wellness (super cheap!), and you can also go to yoga that is heated with infrared heat at Y7, which is incredible. Kill two birds with one stone and get a workout and sauna session in one!
  4. On the same sweaty note, get a workout in. It doesn't matter if it's just a brisk walk around the block... Just move your body. I love to mix is up with some good hard cardio, hot yoga, pilates and weight lifting. Anything that makes me feel good I'll do. Don't force workouts that make you miserable or drain you. You'll just kill your adrenals, especially if you're already stressed in work and life.
  5. This is a given, but drink a TON of water. I carry a water bottle with me at all times. Buy yourself a cute bottle that makes you want to use it! I own this one, this one (that keeps liquids cold/hot for up to 24 hours!), and also just picked up one of these which is my new favorite! You can also amp up your water with some aloe (only add a bit as it doesn't taste great), or chlorophyll, which I love, because it tastes minty fresh!
  6. Eat whole, organic foods. Don't touch anything in a package. Load up on veggies, high quality protein, and good fats. If you're really into it, try the Whole30 challenge. I did it last year, and it's life changing. 
  7. And on that note, you guys will not like this one, but to really fix things, you should be cutting out gluten, dairy, and refined sugars. This is SUPER important. Removing these from your diet will help improve almost anything. You'll have more energy (none of that brain fog/sluggish feeling), you'll feel lighter, you'll most likely lose weight (if you stay consistent), you'll sleep better, you'll be in a better mood, and the list goes on. As you know, sugar is just terrible for you, so if you want to pick one of the three things to cut out, I'd do that first.
  8. While we're at it, I'll add caffeine to the list because that really is another trigger food you should eliminate (I did it almost a year ago now, and haven't looked back!!). Swap it out with the detox tea I mentioned above, or try a Matcha tea latte, which is another favorite of mine.
  9. Meditate at least once a day, even if only for 5 minutes. I love this app and this app to help you start if you've never done it before. A guided meditation is a great way to learn how to do so!
  10. Take activated charcoal. This is especially great to help cure a hangover. Activated charcoal binds to toxins in your body, but be careful, because it'll also bind to any supplements you take so don't take it within a couple hours of taking supplements or eating healthy. You can read more about all the different benefits here.
  11. Dry brushing is the best for skin exfoliation and detoxification. It boosts circulation, stimulates the lymph nodes, improves digestion and the appearance of cellulite, and more. To do it, you should always brush towards your heart, so I start at my feet and work my way up using long strokes. This is the brush I use, which works great.
  12. Try intermittent fasting. This one isn't for everyone, especially if you have issues with blood sugar, but for a lot of people, it is a great way to give your body a break. You can do two different types: one 24 hour period every week, or two 16 hour periods a week. Obviously, I'd chose the later because I'm a hungry hippo most of the time and 24 hours sounds extremely challenging.
  13. Go green with your household products as well as beauty products. I've swapped out pretty much all of my toxic household cleaners, hair sprays, face cleansers, nail polishes, make up, you name it, for eco-friendly, non-toxic, and natural products. And to tell you the truth, I haven't looked back once. Not gonna lie, the amount of compliments I've gotten on my skin since I've made the switch is ridiculous. Some of my favorites include Leahlani, Acure, and Tata Harper for skin care, and Honest Company for household products.
  14. Get a massage! I know, these are pretty pricey and something most people don't consider doing on the regular, but getting one of these as frequently as possible is a really good idea.
  15. Take magnesium and/or a cleansing supplement, as LONG as it is from a certifiable company and has ingredients you can recognize. I'd be very careful about this one, as there are so SO many things on the market that can be harmful to you. To be safe, I'd stick with a magnesium supplement (especially if you are feeling a little "blocked", it'll help move things along - if you catch my drift). I take this one whenever I'm feeling a little backed up and it's incredible. It utilizes the amazing properties of bentonite clay, which absorbs toxins, and magnesium, which helps you to eliminate them immediately! I take this on a daily basis, and also use a magnesium lotion. You really can't overdose on magnesium - it's one of the nutrients that people are the most deficient in too! Some other reputable companies I'd recommend are Metagenics and Be Well (by Dr. Lipman). I cannot stress ENOUGH to not buy supplements from a grocery store or GNC. Don't do it!!!
  16. SLEEP. At least 8 hours a day. This is so important. Your body will not repair and reset itself if you are not getting enough sleep! By the way, the magnesium supplements mentioned above will help to improve your sleep also.

If you're not a member already, you can purchase all of the above at a discount at Thrive Market (my favorite health website EVER).