Fabulously Fit Friday 61

It’s Fabulously Fit Friday!! Let’s talk fitness, healthy stuffs and the weather finally getting nice enough to expose my ghostly legs to the world.

  Fabulously Fit Friday 60 // treatswithatwist.com

Well I did it! I finished the 12 week Bikini Body Guide! I’m so excited that I did it too!

 

The last week, my motivation suddenly dropped to the floor. I had so much trouble even finishing my workouts. Chanting “last week, last week!” didn’t even help. But, I did it, finished semi-strongly, and I fell like I really accomplished something amazing.

 

My sister-in-law and I decided we’ll just start right over, call it week 13 and do the guide all over again (which I’ve seen some ladies do on IG). I figure I’ll do this either:

  1. all the way to week 24 OR
  2. until the Tone It Up: Bikini Series begins and then I’ll just dive into that

 

I’ve been looking forward to the Bikini Series ever since I did it last summer. I felt SO amazing and motivated while doing it, so I’m ready for that feeling again.

  Fabulously Fit Friday 60 --1 // treatswithatwist.com

Week 13 for me has been a bit of a struggle. I powered through the first workout on Monday, did some HIIT running intervals outside on Tuesday, but then I became quite sick to my stomach on Tuesday night… Wednesday I did just the “arms” portion of the “arms and abs” workout to prevent my stomach from acting up again, then Thursday I walked the dogs for some exercise, and ended up with another gut-wrenching stomach ache on Thursday night (that could have been because I chose to have ice cream for dinner though).

I’m hoping it’s just stress and acid because I’ve been VERY stressed out lately. I figure this weekend I’ll wind down, evaluate my lifestyle and try to solve this and get rid of it.

 

So what have you been doing with the beautiful weather?! Is it beautiful where you are? I was shocked to be able to wear shorts last week and even get “hot” while exercising outside! I’m sure my legs won’t be so scary white for long once my pigment kicks in.

What are your fitness goals at the moment?? 

Book Review 7

Are you ready for another Book Review?! I am! I have a few popular novels (a couple teen, one adult) and a new inspiring cookbook to share with you today! There are some hits AND misses, so let’s do this! 

Book Review 7

Book Review 7-2

Book Review 7-6

{I obviously lent this one to my mom before I could photograph it…}

 

An Abundance of Katherines by John Green

  Book Review 7-3

After watching The Fault In Our Stars 4 times in one weekend (darn you HBO movie marathons!), I decided to fall into another Green novel. At the recommendation of my best friend (who happens to be an English teacher and reads lots of teen novels) I decided to read An Abundance of Katherines.

This book was a really refreshing change of pace! At first I was really worried, because the main character is a savant/genius teen who decides to make a math problem to predict the start and end of a relationship based on his past relationships…math?! I was freaked. But no, you don’t have to even read the graph or give a lick about math to 100% get lost in this story.

The main character (Colin) is loveable for his quirks. He only dates Katherines…19 of them to be exact. And he wonders, now broken hearted from the most recent one, if all of his relationships with Katherines can be charted, thus predicting any relationship’s demise.

He and his strange best friend decide to take a road trip to clear Colin’s head and live a little. They get swept up in a middle-of-nowhere-Tennessee town, and decide to stay a while. They befriend a local girl their age (not a Katherine) and it lets Colin put his guard down and get to know someone besides his type and become friends with someone who truly interests him.

I really enjoyed this one. It was a very easy read and the characters were all relatable. I think this would’ve made a great summer read on the beach (as if we all just prance off to the beach in the summer…).

 

To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before by Jenny Han

  Book Review 7-5

This book has been very popular lately and was even featured on Lauren Conrad’s book club list. So, because I give into hype, I ordered it immediately. Annnnddd…

Whomp whomp.

I’m sure it would be a great book if I were 15 and a giddy girl with ALL THE FEELINGS, but I’m just not anymore. And I couldn’t even put myself there for this one. I found it terribly boring (the sentences were very clip and mundane) and extremely predictable. It doesn’t help that nothing happens until around 70 pages into the book.

With the premise of the book, I thought it was going to be a different story…but then it turned into a very very typical teen novel. Lara Jean (the main character) has never dated a boy but has been “in love” with 5 (ie her stomach flipped once, so she was “in love”). At the end of each crush she wrote the guy a letter, explaining how her feelings have ended, and she hides the letters in her room. Somehow they get sent out and the guy she has a crush on suddenly has the letter and so does a popular guy in school that she used to be friends with when she was younger.

This one doesn’t follow what could have been a really fun storyline, involving more of the letters and the guys who receive them. Instead it goes the typical: pretend to be boyfriend and girlfriend to throw off the guy you really have a crush on and get sucked into your “pretend” relationship and caught off guard…

Yeah. We’ve all seen it a thousand times. I almost set it down, but then I realized I didn’t have anything better to do and I hate not finishing things. Total snooze fest.

 

What Alice Forgot by Liane Moriarty

  Book Review 7-6

This is the THIRD book I’ve read by Moriarty and to say I’m hooked would be a vast understatement. I love that all of her books are different and none of the characters are the same (some authors write comfortably familiar characters for all of their books, which makes them all start to sound the same…).

What Alice Forgot is a book I fell in love with.  Alice has an accident in the beginning of the book (she fell off her Spin bike during the gym class!) and loses 10 years of her memories. In her head, she is pregnant with her first child, she is an easy-going, generally happy woman, totally in love with her husband and the crappy house they bought to fix up together. In reality, it’s 10 years and 3 kids later and Alice is mid-divorce, uptight, way fit, and the head of every staunchy women’s group at her children’s school.

Reading this book was such a mental trip! It unfolded and mysteries were revealed about what happened in that 10-year period. Alice is walking around with the attitude of herself from 10 years ago, and she is wondering why her sister seems to look heavier and act like they hate each other…she wonders why her neighbor hates her…why her husband is screaming at her when (in her mind) just yesterday they’d been so excited about everything in their lives! She doesn’t know her children or remember a thing about their births, their likes and dislikes, their temperments. Why is her mom married to her almost-ex-husband’s father?! Who is that guy who says they’re dating?!

What a trip, right?! I loved this one. I loved hearing the juxtaposition between the life she’s living and her mental attitude, trying to catch up to it. I loved wondering what she decides to fix and what she decides to learn to live with. And I loved wondering when memories would come back to her.

Read this one. You’ll love it.

Read my reviews on The Husband’s Secret and Big Little Lies here.

 

Deliciously Ella by Ella Woodward

Book Review 7-4  

Ok ok, I know. This is a cookbook. BUT I love a cookbook with a good story behind it. Ella is a popular blogger! She went through a CRAZY illness that left her so sick, unable to walk, sleeping for days, and puzzled by what would happen to her life (just 2 weeks prior she was so happy and modeling! What happened?!). She read some books for inspiration, completely overhauled her diet and started from scratch, making all gluten-free, plant-based meals (she was an eat-anything person before her illness).

Her recipes are just gorgeous and they’re so simple too. It really inspired me to go back to basics with a lot of my food and be inspired to make some more-colorful meals for Spring! I’m not plant-based (hello steak!) but I love reading recipes for people who are. She doesn’t use any weird meat substitutes and most of her meals can be made in under 30 minutes! Plus, a big positive is that I didn’t feel like she was preaching anything. She’s very enthusiastic about her food but doesn’t force her choices on anyone, because they’re simply what works for her.

I made her Superfood Bread and LOVE  it. I let it cool overnight (because I made it so late that I had to go to bed and pass out while it was cooling) and in the morning, it was perfect! I can slice it super thin and toast it for breakfast or to dunk into soup. Love it. I sliced half of the loaf and froze it so I can enjoy it for another week.

This one is a great one to add to your collection! You’ll find yourself totally charmed by Ella and wanting to make all of her colorful creations.  

 

As always, this is not a sponsored post. All opinions are my own. I bought these books with my own pennies. And any links are affiliate links of Amazon. Thanks! 

Blood Orange Banana Sorbet

Blood Orange Banana Sorbet is a super simple, very healthy treat to get you in a Springtime mood! This recipe is so simple, you’ll be enjoying homemade sorbet, vibrantly colored from blood oranges, in no time!  

Blood Orange Banana Sorbet // treatswithatwist.com  

Happy Spring!

I don’t know what Spring looks like at your house, but at mine it looks like rain and clouds. But I can certainly pretend that it’s sunny…for a hot second.

My parents came to visit this weekend, and by visit I mean my dad came to work tirelessly in my garage, building me a beautiful new desk, some honeycomb shelves, then move all of my furniture around. And my husband was absorbed by March Madness. And I took credit for way too much of the building of the desk. Stellar weekend.

To help use up some of the blood oranges I bought I thought I’d make something vibrant, sweet, fresh and Springy!

To be honest, blood oranges are very hit-or-miss. Out of a big bag you can get a slight few that are actually tasty and the rest are flavorless or taste weird. I hate that. But when you get a good one, it’s totally worth it! And the color just can’t be beat! I love that deep red color.

So, here it is, Blood Orange Banana Sorbet! It’s seriously a quick and easy peasy treat. And it’s basically a frozen smoothie, so go ahead and eat the whole pint or eat it for every meal. The vodka is only enough to smooth out the texture, not even enough to hit your tongue.

Blood Orange Banana Sorbet 1

Blood Orange Sorbet 4

I used my Blendtec to make this one, but whatever blender you have will probably be more than fine! Just blend until it’s completely smooth. I freeze my ice cream and sorbet creations in these disposable pint containers, but you can use anything that is well-sealed (though these are awesome bc they look so legit).

Blood Orange Banana Sorbet 2

Blood Orange Banana Sorbet 3

Blood Orange Banana Sorbet // treatswithatwist.com

I hope your Spring is bright and beautiful! Time for fresh fruit and lots of sorbet. Enjoy! 

Blood Orange Banana Sorbet
Blood Orange Banana Sorbet is a super simple, very healthy treat to get you in a Springtime mood! This recipe is so simple, you'll be enjoying homemade sorbet, vibrantly colored from blood oranges, in no time! (makes 1 pint)
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Ingredients
  1. 4 blood oranges, peel and pith cut away
  2. 1 over-ripe banana, frozen in chunks
  3. ½ tsp. vodka
Instructions
  1. In a high powered blender, combine the blood oranges (I use a sharp knife and cut away the outer peel and pith, then remove the thick white pith vein from the middle) and the frozen banana. Blend until smooth. Add the vodka and quickly blend in.
  2. Pour the mixture into a pint-sized ice cream container and freeze for at least 6 hours or overnight.
  3. Before serving, let the sorbet warm up on the counter for a few minutes to make it easier to scoop. Scoop, serve, enjoy!
Treats With a Twist http://www.treatswithatwist.com/wp/
 This is not a sponsored post. It contains affiliate links though. 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Coffee Creamer (non dairy)

Chocolate Chip Cookie Coffee Creamer! Say that one five times fast! My homemade, almond-based creamer will turn any cup of coffee into a hot or cold treat! 

Choc Chip Cookie Creamer 1

I had a lot of options rolling around my mind when I wanted to make a dairy-free coffee creamer.

I wanted you to like it, first of all. I couldn’t decide: almond or coconut based?

I chose almond. Because every time I go to the store, almond milk brands are rolling out cool creamer versions. And I love that. But they have a ton of sugar in them. I still buy them…but I always wish I didn’t feel a need to use a steady hand when adding it to my coffee.

And then flavor. Holy moly, how do you choose?

I was leaning towards salted caramel…and then I thought mint because of St. Patrick’s Day being this week…but then I couldn’t get one thing out of my head:

That damn Chocolate Chip Cookie Coffee Creamer I bought from the store a few months ago and wanted to CHUG. It was incredible. I never ever buy creamers that are dairy-based, but this one caught my eye and I just had to test it. A million cups of hot chocolate chip cookie coffee and iced coffee lattes later…

Yeah, just had to recreate that one.

I loved that it wasn’t overly sweet, didn’t taste like fakey vanilla, and had a very subtle chocolate flavor running through it (it was a very light brown shade from cocoa being added). It was perfect!

So, my coffee creamer flavor was decided just like that.

I used dates to sweeten mine. I love that you’re not adding any sugars or even stevia. I love that the dates add a caramely sweetness to it, which helps a lot with the cookie flavor.

I use the same method as making almond milk, but less milk for a thicker result, more dates for more sweetness and thickness, and more extracts for the exact flavor I desired. I also would recommend you strain it as many times as you can tolerate. You can never have your creamer be silky enough, in my book.

Choc Chip Cookie Creamer 4

Choc Chip Cookie Creamer 2

Choc Chip Cookie Creamer 3

Splash this stuff in hot or cold coffee. It’ll certainly brighten your morning…or afternoon…or evening… 

Chocolate Chip Cookie Coffee Creamer (non diary)
Chocolate Chip Cookie Coffee Creamer is a dairy free, almond based creamer that tastes just like cookies! Sweetened with dates, this creamer is totally a guilt-free way to turn your coffee into a treat. (makes 2 cups)
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Ingredients
  1. 1 cup raw almonds
  2. 4 large Medjool dates
  3. 2 cups filtered water
  4. 1 tsp. vanilla extract
  5. 2 drops* “butter” extract
  6. Pinch of sea salt
  7. 2 tsp. cocoa powder
Instructions
  1. PREP: In a bowl, combine the almonds and dates. Fill with water. Let soak in the fridge overnight.
  2. Strain the almonds and dates from the soaking water. Remove the pits of the dates (they’ll be very soft so the pits should be easy to just squeeze out). Place the almonds, dates, and 2 cups of filtered water in a high-powered blender. Blend until your can tell that the almonds are quite small (this is pretty quick).
  3. Line a mesh strainer propped over a large bowl with cheesecloth. Pour the mixture through, using a spatula to help squeeze all of the liquid through into the bowl.
  4. Rinse your blender. Pour the almond milk back into the blender. Add the vanilla, sea salt, butter extract and cocoa powder. Blend on high speed for 30 sec to a minute, ensuring it is well mixed and any grains are pulverized.
  5. Strain again.
  6. Taste and adjust to your liking (Like a bit more bite? Add a pinch more salt. Like more savory? Add a few more drops of butter extract. Like more sweetness? Add some stevia or maple syrup.). Pour the creamer in a jar or container for the fridge. Add Chocolate Chip Cookie Coffee Creamer to hot or iced coffee drinks!
Notes
  1. *I pour butter extract into the extract lid then carefully let a couple drops fall into the creamer. Butter extract can taste too strong if you add too much, and I just like that hint of butter, since that’s what makes cookies so yummy.
  2. NOTE: Coffee creamer can be kept in the fridge for up to a week.
Treats With a Twist http://www.treatswithatwist.com/wp/
 As far as “high powered blenders” goes, I own a Vitamix and a Blendtec at the moment. If you have any questions about either, shoot them my way, I’ll be happy to talk about them! I’m a Blendtec affiliate, and if you click on the pretty ad on the right, and you purchase, you’ll get free shipping! 

I was so excited to get to go to the zoo this weekend with my parents and my husband! There was a penguin exhibit open that we attended last year, and you get to be THIS close to the penguins and puffins! Thought I’d share a snapshot with you!

Penguin

Fabulously Fit Friday 60

It’s been awhile, but it’s time for Fabulously Fit Friday! I can’t wait to share with you what I’ve been up to for the last three weeks, fitness-wise! 

Fabulously Fit Friday 60 // treatswithatwist.com

[my green protein pancake and coffee breakfast]

So! I’m officially on Week 12 of the Bikini Body Guide starting Monday! I can’t believe it! YES! That is the last week of the program!

Am I ripped and totally sexy now?

Um, no. 

My husband and I had to sit down and have a serious talk. You have to understand, I’m not the type of person to eat crappy delicious food and cookies all night, so it’s really hard when I’m already eating healthy and working out to get results from a program. I also have a lot of hormonal shit at play here. So, yes, it isn’t fair and I’ll never get those results that I dream about. 

But that doesn’t stop me from trying! I’m replanning some of my meal and snack choices, along with some help from my husband with analyzing my habits and choices. And I think I’ll eventually feel like I’ve done all I can do and be happy with that. 

One of the things we talked about was stripping things back to basics. As in, instead of an apple with peanut butter, just eat an apple. Instead of celery with hummus, eat the celery. I get caught up in a lot of extras (toppings, swirls, add ins, dips, etc). I’m a foodie for Pete’s sake! But I like the idea of stripping things back and starting over for awhile. I need to really get back to tasting the basics. 

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Anyways! My days have been filled with lots of varied workouts, Monopoly Junior with my husband in the evenings (while he rolls his eyes and humors me), lots of crafty moments, and begging for sunshine. 

I’ve been trying to incorporate a Tone It Up workout into my day, either right when I get up, or right when I get home from work, because it’s a very short burst of exercise to mix up my day. Also, I’m trying to get in a little yoga (even if it’s just stretching) as often as possible…and I’m trying to decide what to do after next week when the 12 weeks of BBG is officially over. 

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