Dole Super Bowl Superfood Smoothies + Giveaway

I feel obligated to start off this post by telling you that I am writing to you from Seahawks territory. Yes, I am in the hawk’s nest (Seattle). I flew here on the big hawk this afternoon, but rest assured my blog is Super Bowl neutral, and I am not a 12th man! I mean, I watch the Super Bowl for the commercials (anyone else guilty?)!

Funny story, when boarding my plane in Orange County, the person at the front of the gate announced over the speaker system “Anyone wearing a Russell Wilson, jersey may now board the plane” ahead of all of the general boarding passengers. And then after the 2 people with Russell Wilson jerseys boarded the plane, she announced “Anyone in Seahawks apparel may now board the plane!” I should’ve worn 12th man gear. I wouldn’t gotten better overhead bin space. DARN IT!

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We all know the Super Bowl usually consists of watching the game, drinking beer, eating burgers or pizza, and tons of chips, salsa, and junk food, but I am here to change that! I mean, how cute are these Super Bowl team rivalry smoothies? Even if you’re going to snack during the game, at least give your team some good juju and start your morning off right with a Super Bowl Superfood Smoothie for your team!

I love combining fruits and veggies together in my smoothies and juices, and Dole has a huge variety of fresh fruits and fresh vegetables to choose from to make juicing and smoothie making simple and easy!

Seahawks Blue
1 cup Dole Blueberries
1 handful of Dole Baby Spinach
1/2 Dole Banana
1/4 cup coconut water
1/4 cup almond milk

Seahawks Green
1 huge handful Dole Baby Spinach
1 cup Dole Pineapple
1/2 Dole Banana
1/4 cup orange juice

Patriots Red
1 cup Dole Strawberries
1/2 cup Dole Raspberries
1/2 Dole Banana
1/2 cup orange juice

Patriots Blue
1 cup Dole Blueberries
1 handful of Dole Power Up Greens™ Baby Kale
1/2 Dole Banana
1/4 cup coconut water
1/4 cup almond milk

The trick to making layered smoothies is using the least amount of liquid as possible. You want each smoothie to be extra thick so that they can sit on top of each other without the colors mixing into each other. Less liquid is better. Think of a soft serve consistency.

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Dole has two brand new Get Up and Grow healthy juice and smoothie recipes combining both Dole fresh fruits and Dole fresh vegetables! Click the links to get the new free recipes for the Running Man and Dole Tonic!

Now it’s your chance to win some Dole goodies!
Dole love love loves my readers and giving you guys awesome prizes, and this one makes me so happy because it includes one of my favorite books “365 Smoothies” by one of my close friends Kathy Patalsky from Healthy Happy Life!!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway
*Must use a valid email address to enter. Must be a US resident to enter. Giveaway ends on Sunday, February 1st at 11:59 PM (PST). 1 winner will be randomly selected and announced on Monday, February 2nd.

This post has been sponsored by Dole. I received compensation for this post. All opinions are my own.

Mini Nachos + Cabo Chips Super Bowl Giveaway

Cabo-Chips-Mini-Individual-Nachos

I am so excited to work with Cabo Chips again for an awesome Super Bowl giveaway and #perfectnacho recipe!

One of the coolest parts about blogging is getting to watch brands that you work with grow. I met the owner and founder of Cabo Chips, Christian last year, and since then I’ve watched them grow, expand their flavors, and rebrand with beautiful packaging. It’s so fun to see!

Cabo Chips are truly authentic restaurant/cantina style tortilla chips. It starts with stone ground non-gmo corn cooked fresh daily into delicious tortillas which are hand cut into triangles and cooked in non-gmo expeller pressed soybean oil. They are then seasoned by hand with real ingredients – no powders or “natural flavorings” here just real lime juice and either gluten free soy sauce or sea salt depending on the flavor. Cabo Chips are light, crispy, and flaky, and they’re great on their own and perfect for nachos!

Cabo Chips are also NON-GMO verified, 100% whole grain, vegan, gluten-free, and kosher. The healthiest tortilla chips on the market!

Cabo-Chips-Mini-Individual-Nachos-2 Cabo-Chips-Mini-Individual-Nachos-4 Original Cabo Chips are flavored with a dash of soy sauce and lime which is the most unbelievable combination. Once stacked with the nacho ingredients, these tasty little individual nachos are a mini fiesta on your tastebuds! They make for an awesome Super Bowl appetizer or snack!

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Individual Mini Nachos

1 Bag Original or Blue Corn Cabo Chips
1 bag shredded Mexican cheese
1 can black beans
1 tomato, diced
1 jalapeno, sliced
1 container nonfat Greek Yogurt or sour cream
cilantro

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Spread Cabo Chips out evenly on baking sheet. Sprinkle each chip with 1 Tbsp of cheese and a few beans. Place baking sheet in the oven and bake for about 2 minutes until cheese melts. Remove baking sheet from oven and top each chip with 1/2 tbsp of diced tomatoes, a slice of jalapeño, a dollop of Greek yogurt (or sour cream), and a sprig of cilantro. Serve immediately.

This recipe can be made vegan, with Daiya cheese and no sour cream!

Cabo-Chips-Mini-Individual-Nachos-8Guess what? Cabo Chips is coming out with two new flavors!!!
Enter below for your chance to enter and win an assorted 12 pack of Cabo Chips, including the NEW UNRELEASED flavors!

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Now it’s your chance to win Cabo Chips for your Super Bowl party!!!
Including TWO NEW FLAVORS that have not been released to the public!!!!

Just take a wild guess what these two new flavors are! They are SOOOO stinking good, I cannot wait for my winner to try them out!!!! They will be the talk of their Super Bowl Party for sure!

Giveaway ends on Sunday, January 25th at 11:59 PM (PST).
1 winner will be randomly selected and announced on Monday, January 26th
Cabo Chips prize pack will be shipped out and delivered to your house before Super Bowl Sunday!
*Must use a valid email address to enter. Must be a US resident to enter. 


a Rafflecopter giveaway

Oregano Oil & Garlic to Fight A Cold/Flu

Oregano-Oil-and-Garlic-to-Fight-a-Cold-or-Flu-1

Since it’s flu season and almost everyone I know is sick with a cold, I wanted to share my favorite natural remedies with you guys! I’ve been traveling a ton to different climates, sitting on airplanes with sick passengers, and hanging out with sick friends, and these two magical little items have recently helped me ward off a few colds that I felt coming on in the past several months. And when I say “ward off,” I mean wake up with a full on sore throat, take a few drops of oregano oil in the morning, swallow a few cloves of garlic at night, and by the next morning any sign of a cold is completely gone!

These remedies may sound a bit hippie-ish, but I’ll break them down for you below, and I think you will be believers like me!

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Meet oregano oil aka nature’s antibiotic. Oil of oregano is effective at killing bacteria, and can also help the immune system take action against viruses, fungi and parasites.

Warning, this is the strongest, most potent flavored stuff! Don’t let the word “oregano” fool you, because it is way more intense in oil form! I mean, it makes apple cider vinegar taste like apple pie in comparison, but the outcome is so worth it! The first time I put the drops under my tongue, my mouth was burning and I was frantically searching for water to chase it down – BUT, the next morning my sore throat was completely gone. I always have a bottle of this magical little herb in my house at all times, and any time I feel achy or sick I take a few drops and the next day, I feel fantastic and symptom free!

OREGANO OIL //
Where to buy it:
Amazon, Whole Foods, Sprouts, and most health food stores
How much is it: $15-$20 per 1 oz. bottle
How to take it: 4 drops underneath your tongue (or as directed on the bottle) 2-3 times daily.

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Garlic, not just for cooking! Garlic may be particularly useful in preparation for cold and flu season as it contains compounds capable of killing viruses and bacteria that can cause earaches, colds and influenza!

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It’s best to do this remedy at nighttime just before you go to bed. I mean, garlic has quite a strong scent, and you don’t really want to smell like garlic all day! Plus, if you go to bed right after taking the garlic, this remedy will go to work while you are asleep. Start with 3-5 fresh cloves of garlic (jarred, or powdered will not have the same benefits as fresh). Next, chop the garlic into pill sized pieces pieces (you can also dice/mince them but the flavor will be stronger). To maximize the health benefits, you should chop/dice/crush your garlic at room temperature and allow it to sit for about 15 minutes before swallowing – this triggers an enzyme reaction that boosts the healthy compounds in garlic. Finally, swallow the chopped garlic with a glass of water or orange juice (as you would with pills – If you chew the raw garlic, it will burn!). Go to bed, and wake up cold/flu symptom free! Repeat if necessary!

The first time I did this, I was literally gagging on the “pill sized” pieces of chopped garlic. So if you have a really bad gag reflex and are sensitive to strong flavors like me, dice it up, put it on a spoon, and swallow it with some OJ!

GARLIC //
How much to take:
3-5 cloves
How to take it:
Chop it, let it sit for 15 minutes, swallow with water or OJ.
When to take it: Right before going to sleep

Next time you feel any little symptom of a cold or flu, definitely give these remedies or at least one of them a try! I literally swear by them! Let me know if these natural remedies work for you!

Health & Happiness
xo-Catherine
Do you have any natural remedies you use when you are trying to ward off a cold or flu?

Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter + Blendtec Designer 725 Review

When I was contacted to review the new Blendtec Designer 725 blender and Twister Jar, I have to admit I had some slight hesitations and doubts. I had been loyal to my previous blender for years. I baby it, I talk about it as if it’s my child, I hand dry it with only the finest towels, and I think it does an exceptional job. So why make the switch and try a Blendtec? Well, they told me about their new Twister Jar, and it was time to give Blendtec a chance! I also love the brand’s collaborative spirit and desire to work with bloggers, it makes me so happy!

So here it is, in all of it’s shiny sleek glory – The Blendtec Designer 725 (in Gunmetal)!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-5When I first pulled it out of the box I thought to myself. “Where are the buttons? They forgot the buttons! My blendtec is missing all of the buttons and knobs!” But then I plugged it in, and it lit up like a little space ship!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-1The digital touchscreen interface is the coolest thing! Is this what I have been missing out on for years?! The touchscreen allows you to select the speed by sliding your finger along the line at the bottom of the screen, plus it makes cleaning a breeze. During my first blend I quickly learned that there are 100 speeds, yes 100 speeds on this puppy! I slid my finger a little too fast and it went into lift off mode and I thought this thing was going to take off to mars! I cannot believe how much power it has –  I’m so used to generic speeds 1-10!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-2Another reason I had always been hesitant to try Blendtec was because of it’s single blunt safety blade. Blentec’s signature is their single blade which is 80% thicker and 10 times stronger than their competitors blades, and completely safe to clean and use. It seems kind of strange right? One dull blade? I mean, wouldn’t you want multiple sharp blades to chop up and pulverize your produce and ingredients? I am SO SO SO very glad that I gave Belndtec a chance and tried it out, because they have 100% proved me wrong and have completely blown my mind! The single blade pulverized everything in sight!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-3Above is the Blendtec Designer 725 (in Gunmetal) on the right, and the Twister Jar set on the left!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-4The Twister Jar is probably the coolest thing since sliced bread. It comes with the Twister Jar, patented Twister lid (BRILLIANT!!!), Mini Gripper™ lid for containing thinner blends, and the Spectacula (epic!).

For my first recipe with the Blendtec Twister Jar, I decided to make a Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-6 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-7 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-8 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-9 This is not your average blender. This is a teacher. And during today’s lesson, it taught me when I needed to stir (none of my other blenders did that, they just stopped blending everything), taught me when I needed to add more liquid (say what?!), and gave me congratulatory messages when I succeeded in snack making with virtual praise and high fives on the digital interface!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-10I am OBSESSED with the Twister Jar. I wish that all blenders had this genius little gadget. It’s absolutely brilliant! You know how when you try to make really thick things you have to turn off the blender, scrape down the sides with a spatula, and then turn it back on to continue blending? Well, with the Twister Jar, there is none of that! You put the Twister Lid on and if anything gets stuck to the edges of the jar, you just twist the lid while it’s blending! SO STINKIN’ COOL! I’ve never made any type of nut butter before, and I’m so glad I waited until now to do it myself, because this was the best possible experience ever.
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-11 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-12 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-13The single blade is sooooo easy to clean, and the shape of the Spectacula is just spectacular for getting every last bit of almond butter out of the jar! Another plus about the “dull” blade is that since it’s thicker, it doesn’t cut into your rubber spatulas and ruin them!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-14 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-15 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-16
Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter

1.5 cups roasted almonds
1/4 + 1 Tbsp raisins
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla

Place the almonds, cinnamon, and vanilla in the Blendtec Twiter Jar. Place Twister Lid on top of jar. Set slider speed to 7. Blend until smooth. Twist the Twister Lid as needed. Remove almond butter from the jar and transfer to a mixing bowl. Fold in raisins. Store in a glass jar with lid in the refrigerator.

Of course after I played with the Twister Jar I had to move onto the big guns and give the big container a test run, so I made a smoothie with my new Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter!

Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-17 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-18 Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-20I love the “walk away” blending features that allow you to select what you’re making, walk away and do other tasks, and then come back to a perfectly blended smoothie and blender turned off by itself. Blendtec is such a little smarty pants! Plus I love the little messages that it displays after each blend!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-19Check out that power!
Blendtec-725-and-Twister-Jar-Review-Cinnamon-Raisin-Almond-Butter-Recipe-23Cinnamon Raisin Banana Bread Smoothie
Serves 1

1 Tbsp Cinnamon Raisin Almond Butter
1 cup vanilla almond milk
1/4 cup rolled oats
1/2 frozen banana

Combine all ingredients in the Blendtec. Press the smoothie button, let it blend until completely smooth and creamy, and enjoy!

The Rabbit Food Pyramid Breakdown:
Produce: banana and raisins
Whole Grain: oats
Protein: none
Plant Based Fat: almond butter

Rabbit Food Meal Tip: Complete this meal with a scoop of vanilla protein powder in your smoothie!

Show Blendtec some love
Website // Blendtec.com
Facebook // fb.com/blendtec
Instagram // @blendtec
Twitter // @blendtec
Youtube // youtube.com/blendteconsumer
Pinterest // pinterest.com/blendtec
Google+ // google.com/+blendtec

This post is sponsored by FitFluential LLC on behalf of Blendtec.

Niagara Falls, Canada NYE

I finally found some time to go through my photos from my trip to Canada for New Years, and I’m shivering just looking at them! A few days after Christmas, Matt and I flew to Toronto, Canada. He had to work on New Year’s Eve, and I got invited to tag along, which was seriously so much fun. We flew into Toronto and then made our way to Niagara Falls for Entertainment Tonight Canada’s NYE Bash at the Falls. The falls are absolutely stunning. It was “warm” as the Canadians would say, but I’m letting you know right now – this was the coldest I have even been in my life. I’ve been skiing, I’ve been in below zero temperatures, but the windchill and moisture in the air at Niagara Falls is FREEZING. I have terrible circulation, so my feet and hands are always first to freeze, so I survived walking around the falls with mini heating packs in my shoes and gloves… and still bought a second pair of gloves during the walk! Don’t let the little patches of sun peeking through the clouds fool you, it was actually snowing while we took these photos and my lens kept fogging up!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-1 Perception above vs reality below.
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-2 Bunny teeth out in full force!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-3 Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-4 Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-6 Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-7There were SO many rainbows at the falls, it was gorgeous. And yes, that is in fact a double rainbow!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-8 Matt and a rainbow! So prittayyyy!Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-5This is the American side of the falls. So sunny! Matt and I were cracking up because we both got US cell service (AT&T) while we were in Niagara Falls because we were so close to the border! Score for us!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-9These are the Canadian falls! Note how theirs are instantly icier and snow covered!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-10I love how different both sides of the falls look. The Canadian side looks drastically colder!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-11 Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-12 Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-13 Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-14 Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-15Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-16 After we explored the falls we went to the venue for the ET NYE show where matt was tour managing.
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-18 The show started off with fireworks that were set off from the falls at 9pm, so we all went outside of the greenroom to watch.
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-19 Matt and fireworks!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-25While Matt was working I went and bared the cold to photograph and watch some of the other artists perform. I loved watching Lights open the show, she’s adorable.
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-26Next up was our little nugget Shawn!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-27He absolutely killed it with Nick Jonas, so proud!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-28Keith Urban closed the show. Matt is so proud of this photo, the perfect hair flip. Such luscious locks haha.
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-20 At midnight fireworks shot off from Skylon Tower!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-21I LOVE this photo of Matt! He will probably hate it, but I think it’s the cutest thing ever! So much joy and happiness : )
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-22Matt and I at midnight!
Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-23 Niagara-Falls-Canada-NYE-2015-24Confetti everywhere, the end of a perfect NYE!

xo-Catherine

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