Elevated Living: Joos Day 6 (11.23.13)

Day 6: Saturday, November 23rd, 2013

Today was uneventful. I’ve never been so thankful for that. I’ve entered into a wonderfully developed routine, of ease and simplicity, grounded and sustained in my very own “Om” and relaxation. I will live in this place forever!

Woke up to blog, drink my warm lemon water and get ready for the day. I started off with “Vitality” chia for breakfast. My stomach had been upset the last day or two, so I upped my intake of water to maintain my hydration, and continue it’s, ‘self-clean,’ if you will. I think I’m fighting whatever is going around, and Joos is The General in this war. Thankfully, we’re winning. Or, it could be my body getting rid of more than just the day to day, but hardcore muck I’ve accumulated over the days, months, and years prior to this cleanse.

I’ve never felt this light?! Fresh, and clean, on the¬†inside! Yes, I have lost a few pounds, and it’s exciting. It wasn’t a goal, but an unexpected side effect. Not just for vanity’s sake, but on a health tip that my body is letting go of what it doesn’t need. A lesson that I am sure my body is telling me to carry on into other ways of my life ūüôā

Furthermore, I’ve developed long term habits and knowledge to maintain this style.¬†Do I plan to be vegan for life? Probably not. But who knows. I know foods and such that I craved just days ago, I have no desire for. Things I thought I needed, are now questions of, ‘where does this come from?’ and ‘how will this actually benefit me?’

My snacking has stopped. Yes, you read that right! A grazer for life, I give my body a break between meals now. Aware and alert, and in becoming so, I’m more conscious of things that I say and do. Less reactive, and more intentional. I’ve shifted priorities, and perspectives, taking time and giving time to myself in quiet ways.

Lunch was another delicious meal of spinach, pinto beans, mushrooms, carrots, avocado and all kinds of goodness. Smaller now, which isn’t too surprising. I was always the one that would have an appetizer for a meal, or only finish half of my entree and take the rest home. They sure are healthier meals now though!

I brought my “Antioxidant” Joos for dinner to the Faneuil Hall tree lighting. Part of me wishes I had taken a cup of my new “Le Digestif” tea from at David’s Tea to keep me warm, as it was colder than I anticipated. However, having dinner on the go, while taking in the twinkling lights was quite festive and wonderful. I loved being outdoors, drinking in the excitement of the holidays around me, while drinking in the goodness of Joos on the inside.

Leaving before the actual tree lighting, as it was just too cold and crowded for my taste, I went back home feeling festive, and alive, and thankful; and it was more than any holiday gift could aspire to be.

Joos Day 6: Tree Lighting

 

Until then, keep finding ways to ‚ÄúElevate Your Everyday‚ÄĚ

XO

*DivAmber

Facebook: Elevated Living   Twitter: @DivAmber   Instagram: @DivAmber

Elevated Living: Joos Day 4 (11.21.13)

Day 4: Thursday, November 21st, 2013

Today was the best day to date. I had my routine down packed, my mind was creative and fresh full of ideas, and I kept all forms of hydration handy. I also had the *brilliant* idea to WARM my water for drinking! I used to do it all the time (while working in hospitality), and I often recommend that it’s easier to stay hydrated in the winter by warming up your water. I feel like we’re often reaching for tea, coffee, hot chocolate, cider, etc., to keep us warm, all of which will dehydrate us due to sugar, caffeine, etc. Heeding my own advice, I’ve been drinking like a camel all day long ūüôā

I started the day by drinking “Glow” with chia; my new favorite to date. Not too long after breakfast, even while drinking “Joos Elixir” and plenty of water, I keep having the desire to snack. This is nothing new. I’m a snacker, a grazer, and I know this about myself. Now, I’m just more conscious of what I’m snacking on. We can have unlimited fruit and vegetables, about a fistful size of grain at lunch, and there are plenty of recommendations, and resources for substitutions.

Utilizing this info, my boyfriend and I went grocery shopping at Whole Foods last night. I know, I know, ‘Whole Paycheck’ as everyone refers to it. But, I’ve actually found a plethora of things to be *cheaper* at Whole Foods than other supermarkets. That’s not even factoring in the considerably superior quality! Furthermore, my thinking is you can either pay the farmer, or pay the doctor; it’s really up to you.

Of course, I went with the mindset of ‘only getting a few things,’ but fortunately my boyfriend “Squirrel’s” just as much as I do and we had fun just browsing. ¬†[Squirrel: Did you ever see the movie “Up” and the dog always gets distracted mid-sentence and just focuses on “SQUIRREL” no matter WHAT is going on? That’s what we call it in our house.] Needless to say, that in my, um, ‘Squirrel-ing,’ I stayed on the vegan and gluten free course. I decided to pick up some Pina Colada Coconut Yogurt (for post cleanse), picked up an onion and jalapeno for my vegan, gluten free black bean soup, and grabbed some salsa fresca while browsing some new palette options.

Mind you, that salsa fresca had me standing at my kitchen sink, I-can’t-put-it-down, good. I don’t know why it was so amazing??? Maybe my body was just happier to eat¬†fresh salsa¬†and get a break from¬†Tostito’s salsa¬†and¬†queso dip?
Yeah. My body was freak-ing thrilled.

Who knew there were all these healthy options out there?
Besides that which we are led to, in our everyday by day; blinded by comforts and habit.

Part of the journey during this cleanse was to learn about alternatives and inclusions beyond my current habits. Which are pretty healthy for the most part. I tend to follow my cravings whether it’s spinach, or bacon, and do a good job of listening to my body’s needs. I know there are consequences for not investing in one’s health as I have both seen and experienced them first hand!

In fact, I find it quite fascinating that I am surrounded by people who are sick right now. With everything from headaches, to the flu, to strep throat! I have made sure to take my multivitamin, and even thrown back some airborne, but only out of precaution not need. I feel fine, no, excuse me, I feel great, and I think it’s no coincidence that I am on this cleanse.

I capped off the night with “Power” which was a challenge to get down, but once again I’m feeling thankful. That collards, chard, kale combo gets me every time, but Lord I know I need it! I feel grateful, clear, calm, revitalized, energized, relaxed, awake, alert and alive. And now that I have taken care of everyone else today, it’s time to take care of myself, with plenty left to spare.

Oh, and for lunch- I put that salsa on EVERY-THANG! And all was right with the world! Bon Appetit!

 

Joos Day 4: Lunch

Until then, keep finding ways to ‚ÄúElevate Your Everyday‚ÄĚ

XO

*DivAmber

Facebook: Elevated Living   Twitter: @DivAmber   Instagram: @DivAmber

Elevated Living: Joos Day 3 (11.20.13)

Day 3: Wednesday, November 20th, 2013

Today was going to be my turn around day, I knew it. It had to be; I’d found my rhythm! Plus, Joos says that usually by day three any headaches or sluggish feelings dissipate. I was definitely on a roll starting off bright and early today too.¬†(Note: It usually takes your body about three days to adjust to changes with any cleanse or habit.)

I drank my warm lemon water and waited my allotted 30 minutes before having my “Citrus” chia for breakfast. Amazing, I loved it more than the “lemonade.” It was a great Joos progression (::pats self on the back::) and I loved the addition of grapefruit for breakfast. All the families I’m currently working with are coming down with ‘something’ so I’m glad to recharge on all these fresh fruits, vegetables, and extra C too!

I think that’s part of the transition with the cleanse this time around. I knew it would be different, having done 3 days in the mid-June, versus doing 7 days mid-November. It was easier to quench my thirst in the summer, while now, I yearn for heartier and warmer, items. Today though, I had my focus, and realized a huge misstep that probably contributed to being sluggish: PROTEIN!!!

In the summer I could get away with a salad no problem, but where was my protein intake the last two days?! With all that was going on, I decided a bit of exercise would help too. Most people think that when you’re tired you need rest, but sometimes you just need to jumpstart your body! I did some jumping jacks, crunches, and push-ups to get my heart rate up and my blood moving before lunch.

I made myself a wonderful serving of pinto beans, with the addition of avocado to my usual lunch and by now had already consumed about 3/4’s my daily water requirement.

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BOOM BABY! It was like a light went on.
The feeling of sluggish-ness was gone within the hour.
I felt centered and whole again.

That being said, even while I was feeling sluggish, I felt sustained, calm, and relaxed. There’s no caffeine crash or sugar low, it’s more like a plateau. The daily email also said,¬†“Today is usually a transition day. ¬†If you been feeling tired, sluggish or have a bit of a headache today is usually the last day.¬†People start to feel great and more energetic by Day 4!” That, makes me feel very good, thankful, and happy. Three days to see changes right? Three days of goodness so far!

As my awesome day continued as I had the chance to speak with Ms. Lauri Meizler, the CJO aka Chief Joos Officer. (Read more about the amazing and phenomenal Ms. Meizler here!) This is part of what I love about Joos. Every member of the Joos team is available every step of the way. You receive daily emails, recipes, suggestions an overall guide throughout the entire process.

This isn’t just ‘drink our juice’ it’s more ‘grow with us, as you grow yourself.’

Openness, dialogue, support, and customer service are huge characteristics of brand loyalty and my passion towards a product. Furthermore, chatting with Lauri was an excellent highlight to a turn-around day. She reassured the steps I was taking, and provided more insight to the cleanse. I am really looking forward to some amazing opportunities stemming from this wonderful experience and will be sharing them with you soon!

Thank you all for keeping up with my journey,
for ‘growing with me’ as I continue to Elevate My Everyday!

Until then, keep finding ways to ‚ÄúElevate Your Everyday‚ÄĚ

XO

*DivAmber

Facebook: Elevated Living   Twitter: @DivAmber   Instagram: @DivAmber

Elevated Living: Joos Day 2 (11.19.13)

Day 2: Tuesday, November 19th, 2013

I started off with “Vitality” with chia for breakfast. I wish I had mixed it up so I didn’t do back to back of the same drinks. However, that being said, chia made “Vitality” taste so smooth. I liked it a lot more than I did last night, despite the beets! It’s interesting to consider how chia effects taste; aside from just texture. I was feeling a bit sluggish, although I was extremely well rested. Thankful to be getting an earlier start than Monday, I tried to get in a lot of my water intake before I moved onto the “Joos Elixir Pineapple.”

For lunch I started with brown rice, that was leftover from day one. I covered it with green beans, spinach, sweet potato, and almonds that had all been sauteed in seasoned olive oil. I continued with my “Joos Elixir Pineapple” and “Original”¬†throughout the day. Following it up with hummus and carrots, and a “Joos Bite” for a snack around¬†5pm. Those snacks will be incorporated into my new healthy habits for life!!! I chose “Lemonade” for dinner and had a “Joos bite” for dessert around¬†8pm.

Don’t let the green color of “Lemonade”¬†throw you off!
It’s sweet, citrusy, and delicious! Definitely perfect for a summer day,
but filling enough for a winter dinner too! 

I felt good today, just trying to keep up with the water intake is a still bit challenging.¬†I take my 20 oz water bottle wherever I go, (to make math easy!), but the challenge is remembering to drink it even though I’m not thirsty. In fact, I didn’t even finish my dinner! That’s what’s so crazy about this.

I feel SO full!

Because my body is getting all the nutrients that it needs, without sifting through junk- of many kinds- I don’t feel hungry like I used to.

I kept trying but I easily missed an ounce or so. I cut down on the snacking today, and I’m going to cut down on the brown rice a bit tomorrow too.¬†[*Please note: I am NOT complaining. I am fully aware that I am extremely blessed, to be abundantly full inside & out; it just happens to make me forgetful!]

Either way, I was able to get some amazing rest for the second night in a row. Thanks to Joos keeping me mindful of abundance abound and helping me Elevate My Everyday!

Until then, keep finding ways to ‚ÄúElevate Your Everyday‚ÄĚ

XO

*DivAmber

Facebook: Elevated Living   Twitter: @DivAmber   Instagram: @DivAmber

Elevated Living: Joos Day 1 (11.18.13)

Day 1: Monday, November 18th, 2013

I knew my first day of the cleanse was going to be a rough day. I normally eat breakfast between 8am-9am and today I couln’t pick my Joos up until 11:30am.¬†Thinking ahead, I made a chia pudding Sunday night based off this recipe: http://veganprairiefood.wordpress.com/2012/08/03/banana-oatmeal-chia-pudding/#more-1622¬† I didn’t have the banana and boy did I taste that the next morning! So I added a bit of raw honey, vanilla and cinnamon to taste. I wasn’t too fond of the oatmeal texture, but other than that it was really good!

*[Joos guides that you should have Chia for breakfast (bottom row 7 provided), a Joos drink for dinner (top row 7 provided),  Joos Exlir Mineral H2O throughout the day (two middle rows 14 provided mid-morning and mid-afternoon) and Joos Bites (not pictured). You have the freedom to choose the order of Joos and should drink 1/2 your weight in water daily.]

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After schlepping home 28 16oz bottles, I started off with “Power Chia” for breakfast: kale, lemon, cucumber, lime, bok choy, celery, chard, collards. “Power” sounded like it could jumpstart my day; and I instantly felt awake. However, the taste hit me hard. It was my first time having chard and collards in juice form and I’m not exactly sold on it yet. Thank God for the lemon and lime that complemented and cut the juice a bit!

About an hour later, I was hungry again. Now, I blame that on my late start and wonky schedule, not the cleanse. Either way, I made my lunch early: brown rice, covered with sauteed diced sweet potato, spinach, and garlic, in olive oil and spices. I threw some raw sliced almonds and cranberries on top. Why am I not eating like this all the time?! It was delicious! This is vegan??? Well it’s not so bad after all!!! I washed it down with some water and Joos Elixir H2O Original.

During the afternoon I continued drinking water, and Joos Elixir; snacked on slices apples, and a chocolate chip “Joos Bite.” ¬†I’ve been addicted to those bites since my cleanse in June. You’d never know they’re made from vegetable and fruit pulp because of that rich dark chocolate taste. I want those all day, every day. Seriously. Get them here:¬†https://shop.drinkjoos.com/

For dinner I went with “Vitality”: beet, cucumber, bok choy, celery, apple, kale, chard, collards, lemon and lime. Let it be known, I am not a beet fan. I have tried them on multiple occasions, a variety of ways, and to me- they still taste like dirt. That being said, this juice was tasty! A deep red color, this is actually a wonderfully balanced Joos. It has the chard and collards I didn’t care for as much in “Power,” but almost tastes a bit sweet? Probably the inclusion of the apple this time around; and obviously the beets.

After dinner, I was still hungry. I had another Joos bite, and my Joos Elixir Pineapple. I prepped a bit of fruit and veggies for the next day, drank some more water, and tried to distract myself to no avail. Upon distraction, I realized I had all the ingredients to make hummus, except for tahini (which I don’t really care for anyways).

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It was my first time attempting something like this and I was quite excited. It was SO easy and SO delicious! I can’t believe I haven’t been doing this all along?! Store bought hummus will never happen again. I added extra lemon and hot sauce, seasoned to taste with crushed red pepper. Now I just needed something to eat it with.

The trip to the deli wasn’t as hard as I expected. My boyfriend and I originally went to grab some popcorn [saving hummus for the next day], and not being able to find any he grabbed the microwave kind among other junk food. I opted for Late July Organic Sea Salt by the Seashore which I’ve come to love thanks to free samples from this year’s Boston Greenfest in Government Center.

Upon returning home and snacking during, “Olympus Has Fallen,” guess whose snacks came out the winner??? MINE! We both agreed my homemade hummus and Late July chips, totally trumped the microwave popcorn and other random not-so-good-for-you-crunchy-items. (Let it be known, we never eat microwave popcorn as it is. I always use fresh kernels, in seasoned oil, the old school stovetop way. See here: https://divamber13.wordpress.com/2013/11/17/elevated-living-preparing-ahead/

Alas, Day 1 was a bit tricky. ¬†I felt I had cheated myself by snacking so much off the guided schedule. That being said, I’m a bit hard on myself because I did adhere to everything, and I learned a LOT about what is INCLUDED on this cleanse. Furthermore I made a delicious organic and vegan lunch with ease, and hummus for the first time! Off to bed I went and got some of the most solid, restful sleep I’ve had in a while ūüôā Tomorrow is another chance to ‘Elevate My Day’ in every way.

Until then, keep finding ways to ‚ÄúElevate Your Everyday‚ÄĚ

XO

*DivAmber

Facebook: Elevated Living   Twitter: @DivAmber   Instagram: @DivAmber

Elevated Living: NYC Musts Old & New

An old adage usually goes something like, “Being around family should last the extent of fish in the fridge; 2-3 days max.” Alas, call me crazy, but time always seems too short when visiting my family; even after a week!

Fortunately in our maturity and growth, as both a family and individuals, we’ve developed quite the rhythm. Unfortunately, in spending time with them (and The City being so overwhelmingly full of exciting people to see and things to do) I have to be diligent in my “Must Visit” list.

Here are a few, yes a FEW, of my personal “NYC Musts,” God¬†willing, weather pending.

1) Union Square Greenmarket:

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I grew up going to this farmer’s market as a kid. I distinctly remember being pushed around in a stroller, excited at the prospect of petting goats straight from the farm, where my parents went to get goat milk before it was trendy. (Such visionaries those two!) There were apples to snack on, fresh cider to sip, and I couldn’t wait to get my hands on a ‘sausage stick,’ while taking in the sites and sounds of farm fresh goodness abound.

To this day, if I’m in town on a Monday, Wednesday or obvious Saturday- the Union Square Greenmarket is a must. I grab a $2 bag of salted pretzels from Martin’s Pretzels and at¬†least a 1/2 quart of apple cider from Breezy Hill Orchard. Oh, and in the winter, I never opt for cider donuts, but always pair their hot mulled cider with a molasses cookie. I don’t know how they do it, but they are always chewy no matter the time of day you purchase them!!! I grab my snacks and wander through the farm fresh goodness abound, like a kid in a farmer’s market.

2) East Village Cheese:

EVCNYT

$1 Brie. There. I said it. If you’ve read my blogs at all, you know, I’m into Frugality without compromise of enjoyment in any form. Even loving many of the finer things in life, I still cry; “With God as My Witness, I shall never go hungry again,” and East Village Cheese answers my cries and cravings without a huge dent in my wallet. Brie, Carr’s crackers, Prosciutto, and oh so much more are found hidden inside this hole in the wall establishment. Specials of the day are strewn across the storefront with signs on 8×11 pieces of paper with colored markers. I always try to shop here during the day on weekdays when it’s least crowded. However, if you do decide to stop in, ‘post Farmer’s Market on a Saturday,’ come with time, and much patience, to this unique gem.

3) L.A Burdick:

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I’m lucky enough to have this establishment not once, but twice in Boston (Harvard Square & Copley Square). However, I come to the Flat Iron, NYC location for my¬†Dark Chocolate Grey Goose Martini. Are you kidding me? I mean seriously! The first time I had it, I fell in love. The way it coated my mouth and soothed my soul in a chocolate haven. The bustle of a tiny little European style cafe, was the perfect atmosphere to be lost in NYC, yet found inside that perfectly shaped V of a glass. Slowly sipping to The Point, enjoying the fresh chocolate shavings, that lasted until the decadent finale. Mon dieu, I can face anything after that. Even a long ride back to Boston. ūüôā

Until then, keep finding ways to ‚ÄúElevate Your Everyday‚ÄĚ

XO

*DivAmber

Facebook: Elevated Living   Twitter: @DivAmber   Instagram: @DivAmber

Elevated Living: Attitude of Gratitude

Approaching a friends door recently, I was amazed that they have yet to take down their #Christmas wreath. I must admit; it is in excellent condition and still brings a smile to my face, as the holiday season is a great time of year. The holidays bring out the best (in most!) and are a wonderful time of gathering around the dinner table with family and friends. Ah yes, the dinner table. The root of it all.

To be #thankful to fill not only our plates, but our bellies. To perhaps raise a glass to all that we’ve been given. Unfortunately around the holidays, I find that stress gets in the way through the day to day activities. A time where many forget to relax, savor, and enjoy.

Add in the financial pressure and stress, and the sudden treats with friends and family become, annoyances to endure and debts to repay. ¬†Alas, I’m here to remind you that treating yourself, and one another, in the holiday spirit does not have to break the bank! It should also extend well past through the holidays- to be honest- year round!

Restaurant Week is one of those ways to, “Elevate the Everyday,” twice a year. Going through photos of my four (4) dinners dined during Restaurant Week Summer 2012, I’m reminding myself- and YOU- to give ‘holiday style’- throughout 2013 and beyond. #Boston #Restaurant week is fast approaching beginning March 17th-22nd & March 24th-29th.*

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Feel free to revisit my #RestaurantWeek #Boston tips #blog for some great information. Speaking of #tips please see the attached photos for Restaurant Week tipping etiquette!

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Also enjoy this website Boston Restaurant Week as an excellent resource on who, what, where and when. (*Some restaurants are extending their RW menus on the Saturday March 23rd.) imgres

Until then, keep finding ways to ‚ÄúElevate The Everyday‚ÄĚ

XO

*DivAmber

Elevated Living: Tips for Restaurant Week!

Your Guide to Restaurant Week Boston!

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A few quick things to remember about dining out for restaurant week! (In no particular order) #Boston #Restaurant Week

1) Servers, Bartenders, etc. are STILL working for TIPS

2) Some restaurants have prix-fix lunch and dinner menus available YEAR ROUND. Focus on visiting the restaurants that you’ve always wanted to try. Be it a new type of food, something normally out of your price range, anything. Be daring!

3) Personally, I like to combine my use of #OpenTable Reservations Systems to make reservations and earn points to #FreeFood. No, but seriously… If you’re going to make a reservation, or a few, why not take advantage of some incentives towards going back to a new restaurant find later on?!

4) Important new trends; SOME RESTAURANTS:

-Offer different menus for RW 1 and RW 2

-Offer different menus DAILY

-Offer different menus for lunch and dinner

-Only participate in EITHER LUNCH OR DINNER

-Participate in Restaurant Week on the SATURDAYS.

Otherwise the schedule is: Sunday August 19th- Friday August 24th & Sunday August 26th- Friday August 31st

5) There are three options, Lunch 2- course $15.12, Lunch 3-course $20.12 and Dinner 3-course $33.12

***BE ADVENTUROUS & HAVE FUN… It’s Lunch and Dinner- not Life & Death ūüôā What have you got to lose!***

I will post as I dine, but here are some other links in your quest for deliciousness!

http://www.bostonchefs.com/

http://www.restaurantweekboston.com/

http://boston-restaurant-week.tumblr.com/

http://bostinno.com/2012/08/19/boston-restaurant-week-best-menus-for-restaurant-week/#ss__205104_1_0__ss

Until then, keep finding ways to ‚ÄúElevate The Everyday‚ÄĚ

XO

*DivAmber