Health and Wellness

Exercise Health

Meditating Before Exercising

I clearly love to meditate. It provides me with that sense of control before my day starts. I wake up early just to meditate before speaking to anyone. That is my moment to myself and God.

Meditation provides me with focus and control to strengthen my muscles through stretching. I have been meditating for years. When I first started my mind would drift away. So I was able to come back by creating a safe place in my mind. This type of meditation is called visualization and guided imagery.  My safe place is when I am able to take my mind to a peaceful, calming, and relaxing place. At this present time I am able to meditate with a clear mind and block everything out.  Just having that comfort zone is like having your favorite dessert. I stay focus by at least doing this 3 to 5 times a day. There is not a certain number of minutes to do this. I usually do about 5 to 10 minutes depending on what I have going on.

Stretching

Stretching provides flexibility, range of motion, and increases the control of muscles.  One of the essential components of keeping your bones strong and healthy is to stretch them.

There are different kinds of stretching which are static, passive, dynamic, ballistic,  active isolated, isometric, and proprioceptive neuromuscular facilitation.

The stretch you see above is the static stretch that I did before going into my exercise for my glutes.

As you have read above exercise can consist of meditation which I often use during those times.  Stretching and exercise combined provides flexibility, increases energy, relieves stress and anxiety, and improves blood flow.

The glute exercise above is done by:

*lifting one leg to the side

*pulling the leg out behind your hiney

*and bending your heal to your glute.

I usually do (15 sets) each side

I would love to hear from you. Leave a comment.

Thanks,

Shawonnica S. Hightower

 

Health and Wellness

Self Care of Lavender

The smell and color of Lavender are so relaxing. As I put lavender in these sachets I was thinking about all the mothers in the world. The feeling of happiness is one of the best things you could ever imagine. Lavender having the benefits of rest and calmness equals happiness. That is why these sachets will go in a Mother’s First Aide Kit I am putting together.

There is nothing better than having lavender around to relieve stress. Did you know it relieves depression as well? Yes that is correct depression. This herb in the oil form helps calm the mind, lift your mood, and clear your focus when inhaling. Lavender is also good for your skin, headaches, psoriasis, and burns.

Lavender Lavender Lavender Lavender is all I have to say while I smell it in the air of my house.

Let me know how you use lavender and what you think of it?

Thanks

Shawonnica S. Hightower

Health and Wellness

Carrots and Eye Health

pexels-photo-65174.jpegAmazing Carrot Health

Carrots are crunchy and delicious.  They have so many benefits o- my god.  The power that carrots bring to your health is amazing let me tell you.  Before I start to add the flare of health to the eyes let me inform you on the other benefits.

Carrots protects the teeth and gums. Teeth plaque and food particles are removed just like brushing your teeth when crunching on carrots.  The gums are stimulated and saliva is increased which balances acid and cavity forming bacteria. The minerals in carrots prevents teeth from damages.

Carrots have fiber which assist in cleaning the colon out. They are also known to prevent stroke, heart disease, high cholesterol, cancer, and infection.

Carrots are known as the miracle wonder to our skin because they contain vitamin A and antioxidants which prevents skin wrinkling, acne, dry skin, blemishes, uneven skin tone,  and pigmentation.  Aging is also known to slow down

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Carrots and Eye Health

The beta carotene in carrots are perfect for the eyes.  The beta carotene is converted into vitamin A into the liver and then it goes into the retina which is necessary for night vision.  Beta Carotene is so important to the eyes because when it is eaten in large amounts it can protect against senile cataracts and macular degeneration.

I like carrots, but I don’t like to eat them alone.  I often cook them with other foods are eat them raw with other foods.  They are not my cream of the crop to eat alone.

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Would love to hear from you.

Shawonnica S. Hightower

 

Must Haves

Kitchen Gadgets Must Haves

The links in this post contain affilate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

Krups Kitchen Gadgets Must Haves

My krups coffee and spice grinder is one of the best gadgets that has crossed my path. I bought this gadget because I needed to grind mince onions into powder onions for a meal I was preparing.  This gadget is awesome because it grinds nuts, grains, coffee, and spices.

Care Instructions:  Wipe it out with a damp cloth and not to wash it in dish water.  It should never be submersed in water.  The lid can be washed in hot soapy water.

Mince Onions

Grind Onions In Progress

Mince Onions turned into Powder Onions

Cast Iron Cooking Items

I love to cook with my iron grill and skillets. They cook food so evenly and are well-seasoned.  They are non stick cookware as well.   Less oil is needed to cook with when cooking with iron. Cast Iron is a cooking ware that you can cook on the stove with and then transfer to the oven without any problems.

Care Instructions:

They are so heavy so it  is very imperative that you carry them with two hands. Remember to grease them after wiping them down. It is important to grease them in order for them not to rust.  

I love these cast irons dearly. I have two skillets. I small one and a large one. They are a must have.

Cooking Mittens

I love cooking mittens in my kitchen. They provide that protection for my hands from the hot surfaces of the stove, oven, and cookware. These are cloth, however I will be purchasing silicone gloves soon.  Silicone is resistant to water, stains, and made of stronger materials.

Measuring Utilities

Every kitchen needs measuring utilities of different measurements ranging from spoons to cups (tsp, tbsp, ounces, and, cups). It is essential to have these tools for accuracy, to separate measuring the wet from the dry ingredients.

I love to make veggie burgers not a lot of them. This mini food processor is great for mixing the ingredients.  If you prepare large amounts of food I would recommend you buy the larger one.

Wood Spoons are great to keep your pots and pans from getting scraped up.  They do not heat up quickly , react chemically with acidic foods, nor do they melt or spill chemicals in your foods.  I also love my wooden cutting board. Most wooden spoons and boards are treated with mineral oils that do not allow bacterial to reside.

The Ninja Blender is a powerful tool that breaks down whole fruits, vegetables, seeds, nuts, and ice into a smooth blend.

Good cooking pans allow great food to cook.  The pioneer woman cooking set is a non-stick set, and it responses well to the change of temperature. The pots heat evenly which is a plus for me.  I also feel in love with this brand because it is very pretty.  My set came with different size pots and pans. I am looking to purchase another set.

If you are always in your kitchen as I am, it would be beneficial for you to purchase the items you need and love. It is nothing like having the gadgets at your finger tips ready to cook. I recommend all these items.  Let me know what you think if you have them already or will purchase them. Tell me why you purchased, and what are your thoughts.

Shawonnica S. Hightower

Health and Wellness

Fitness Routine

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The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link.

I love nothing more than keeping my body healthy. As a matter of fact it is a lifestyle routine for me. My mouth waters at the talk of food not just any kind of food. I will share some of the foods I absolutely enjoy and stays in my weekly menu routines.

. Variety of bell peppers/onions/garlic

Fresh chopped green beans

Chopped Garlic Green Beans

The Mind and Body have a connection as I see it. The mind travels at a fast speed. If you don’t slow it down you will overwhelm yourself with to much which will eventually make you sick. You have to learn how to pay attention to what your body says it needs. Learn how to get get in tune with your body language. I have become very close to my body’s health which makes me the expert on what my body is saying. So my body always wants to have me time. So we find it by doing yoga and meditation.

A girl becomes fitness sassy when she has new workout clothes. When she finds the right shoes for comfort and they match her workout clothes o-my gosh she feels as if she is on cloud nine. She has won the jackpot. This year is the year to make those healthy goals stick in your routine. So make your way over to Target where you can find some great fitness clothes as a matter of fact I think I will do just that especially with the sale they are having check it out on the link above.

Shawonnica

Follow me on instagram to find more of what is go on with Shawonnica. #shawonnicashightower

Parenting

Parent’s Styles for Children

The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link. Target

When I found out I was having a baby girl as a first time parent o-my gosh it was so scary….. but fascinated at the same time. I was a senior in college so I had to focus on being a mom and finishing my classes at the same time. It was challenging I must say.  I completed the challenge: I had my baby and I graduated some months afterwards.

So let me back up for a minute. In the middle of completing my class I had to prepare for my baby girl. So I had to get all the nice and neat little clothes and gadgets for my little being. It was my first baby and it was a baby girl so I went hay wild buying everything pink. I was not thinking about looks, fitting, and feel.  All I knew I was having a baby girl and pink was the color for girls and beautiful.

When I think back I choose all of the baby items, and my husband was not involved in that planning. Today I think fathers should be so involve in the process. They should be at doctor’s appointments before and after birth. They should be assisting with picking out cloths and gadgets.  Babies’s doctor appointments are so important to be at because every little condition or stepping stone should be known by both parents in case something was to happen.

I was in Target the other day looking for some house decor. I made a turn into the little girls section. It just brought back memories of how I chose the most adorable outfits for my girls when they were small. They are not small any longer. So mothers while you have little girls take a moment to enjoy picking their clothes. That will all change as they grow. So you know the season will be changing soon. I hope you are making your way over to Target this weekend because they have great prices on girls clothes.

Check out the sale on children items. Click the target link at the end of period or at the top of page. Target

Shawonnica S. Hightower

Food and Drinks

Love Heart Smoothie

http://adn.impactradius.com/display-ad/2092-174072                                            The links in this post contain affiliate links and I will receive a small commission if you make a purchase after clicking on my link above.

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This month is Valentines Day, my daughter’s birthday, and American Heart Month so I am dedicating this smoothie to all three by calling it Love Heart Smoothie.  The smoothie is red like a heart and have all healthy ingredients which are Whole Strawberries, Almond Breeze Milk, Gold Pineapple Chunks, Bananas, Organic Pure Maple Syrup, with Cranberry Pecan Granola on the side.  Today is one of those days in Georgia where the sun is shining bright, but the temperature speaks cold.  I am just saying with it being cold and everything it would seem as if my taste buds would be calling for something warm like maybe an herbal tea,  but instead it is calling for a smoothie.

O-My Goodness all I can think about is how happy I am going to be when this smoothie hits my tummy. As I placed the items on the counter my daughter walks in the kitchen and stands beside me. She can hardly wait to put these yummy ingredients in her body.  The red plump strawberries just filled my heart with love as if I am in heaven.

IMG_0210 Ninja

To blend my ingredients I have to have a powerful kitchen machine right.  Yes, that is correct.  I have nothing other than a  Professional 1100 watts Ninja. This blender is so awesome when it comes to blending all the ingredients together without leaving chunks of fruit behind.  This Ninja came with two drink size cups which can also go on the motor to blend for  single drinks.

I am that girl who loves to shop at Target and guess what, you can always get anything you want when you have a target card.  Click the link above to go to the site.  Target has amazing deals on shipping as well.  How sweet is that?

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This is a mixture of my fruits and protein and iron powder before pouring the milk.

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The milk is added and then this occurs.

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All ingredients blended.

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Give them something to talk about. You will be talking about how delicious this smoothie is and as you are talking someone will taste it without even having one.  How about that. I am telling you this smoothie is delicious. I used half a banana and I don’t know the amounts of anything else. I just put what I would like in the blender and let it blend.

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I am just in dreamland right now, however it is going to be real in about 2 minutes.

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Yes, this is what I am talking about right here. So amazing.  Now this will place you on cloud nine or over the top. You must try it very soon.  Let me know what you think after making it.

My Ninja is the best.  I love it. I am recommending it for the best blends.

Shawonnica S. Hightower

beauty

Natural Hair Attitude

I love my hair and all the greatness that comes with it however……..

Don’t get it twisted I have not always been so confident in myself. I used to carry baggy around of what others would think about me and what they would say. I knew I wanted to be natural and have healthy hair without all the breakage and heat so it was necessary to take the leap. I did, but I also bought wigs to camouflage my short cut. I was not exactly comfortable with myself yet. So I took it slow for a couple of months to easy right out of those wigs. I wear wigs from time to time, however I am at a point I am comfortable in my own skin to wear my natural out. I like different looks and wigs provide that for me when I prefer.

Steps to self-confidence

Ways of loving myself was important to me. So my message to myself was I am beautiful inside and out and that is for sure. I would say that to myself every single day. I started taking pictures and going out in public with my short cut.

I always would see other women with natural hair and would often compliment them on how beautiful they were. I started to receive compliments on my own hair. Questions started to come in on what products I used. When the questions first started I was trying out products to see what my hair attitude was with certain ones. The products I started out with were Shea Moisture, non flake gels for natural hair, and Taliah Waajid products. I learned along the way my hair has many attitudes because it changes in the products it prefers. This month it may do well with one particular product and the next month it may say I don’t like you any more. The attitude is wild y’all (lol).

Once I became comfortable with my natural I gave away a lot of my wig babies. The confidence I gained provided me confidence to do other things I was not confident doing.

My smile shines brighter because I gained the confidence I needed by taking a step towards what matters to me.

Confidence increases happiness!

Shawonnica S. Hightower

Must Haves

Spring 2018 Attire

The moment is here to get rid of the old and bringing in the new. It is like a ball game throwing ideas in my head and placing them on a vision board. I often think about New York Fashion Week. So as you already know that is on my planning list.

Attire thoughts

I was sitting and reflecting on my seasonal look for 2018. The thoughts in my head are so business like this year. Maybe I will have more skirts and dresses for the spring with a variety of shoes.

My shoes have to be a little different than the ordinary. I am forever in love with vintage shoes and dresses. They are timeless and classic.

Embroidered Retro-Vintage


ModClothRetro-vintage Embroidered High Heel



Milan Spring 2018 for more visit livingly


I always liked heels as such especially when they are flats. You see, my duck feet have a low arch and a heel like this release them from that flat surface which makes them hurt.

The color is spectacular I must say. You are either all in or not. For me all in.

I love this whole dressy attire. From the dress to shoes call out classy. The colors speak volume. Let’s say it reminds me of the song Who’s that lady by the one and only The Isley Brothers. When a woman walks in the room wearing this all eyes are on her. There are no words only eyes speak.

The neck tie on this dress says she is coming to conduct business especially with the cardigan. Pearls are spectacular to go in the ear they always catch the eye.

The dress sets above were all pulled from Pinterest. Pinterest is a great way to find your niche. Mix and match from their boards until you find your style for 2018.

If you are anything like me i like to change my style every year from my hair to my feet.

I would love to hear what your attire vision is for 2018. Leave a comment.

Shawonnica S. Hightower

Health and Wellness

Self Love & Self Care

Love and care starts with you. We must all remember loving and caring for self is so important in so many ways.

I challenge you in 2018 to:

1. Get a total Yearly Physical

2. Make routine visits to the doctor if

Needed

3. Pamper yourself weekly

4. Exercise for at least 30minutes a day

5. Do something for yourself

6. Find a good book to read

7. Journal

8. Write

9. Do things you like

10. Take up a hobby

11. Find others who have the same interest as yourself (network)

12. Cheer yourself on

13. Volunteer

14. Find your passion

15. Travel

16. Make a bucket list (make sure to do them)

17……………

Make 2018 your year

When you make it your business to love & care for self then you can love & care for others.

Thanks,

Shawonnica S. Hightower

Must Haves

Christmas Day

Yesterday was Christmas Day. What a joyful time we had. It brought joy to my soul seeing the smiles and laughter from my family as they opened their gifts in awe. I wrapped each and every gift without anyone knowing who had what. Everyone was surprised to know who got what. As the gift opening came to an end I immediately started to break boxes down and trash gift wrapping paper. The Christmas Trees came down shortly afterwards. I did not waste any time doing so because I knew I had to get started on what was to come next on my journey. Christmas is my favorite holiday, however I always look forward to the New Year.

The must haves for the New Year:

1. 2018 Calendar Book/little book

It is important to keep track of everything that is going on especially if you are a busy mom.

2. Wirelessly Waterproof Speaker for the shower

Much needed time to relax

3. Wi-fi Range Extender

WiFi need to work in every space possible so you will not miss a thing

4. Bluetooth Tracking Device(keys especially)

I am good at losing my keys and it is terrible when I am in a rush and have no clue where they are.

5. Mini Bluetooth Speaker

Who have time to hold a phone when doing things. This Speaker will keep you hands free and talking at the same time. So this is amazing because you can listen at music, podcasts, and have conversations on this device.

These are just a few of my 2018 must haves.

What do you all think? Would love to hear from you.

Thanks,

Shawonnica S. Hightower

Food and Drinks

Ginger Lemon Way

Have yourself a Ginger Lemon Way! This is right on target especially if you like herbal and healing. The ginger and the lemon combined is a great addition to any teas and milks.

Lemons have a tons of health benefits. They are a great source for vitamin C, potassium, magnesium, copper, B complex vitamins, calcium, iron, fiber, phosphorus, citric acid, and flavonoids. Lemons are good for detoxing the liver, bowels cleaning, dissolving gallstones, kidney stones, calcium deposits, helps with working with the infection of cold and flu, and assists with balancing the body’s ph levels.

Ginger treats stomach problems such as: gas IBS, colic, upset stomach, morning sickness, indigestion, bloating, inflammation, and constipation.

Ginger Lemon and almond milk combine reduces inflammation, boosts immunity, helps digestion, and regulates metabolism.

The Ginger Lemon Way is so Delicious!

Ginger Lemon Way

Recipe:

Cut lemon in half.

Cut a quarter piece of ginger

Half cup of in unsweetened almond milk

Sugar of your choice

Place all in a pot to boil and stir.

Once come to a boil turn off to cool .

Pour in your glass and enjoy!

 

Thanks for visiting,

Shawonnica S. Hightowet