How To Stay In Love

I’m a hopeless romantic.  My mom once said to me, “you are in love with love.”  Indeed, she was right.  Unfortunately, this has led to some heart breaks for me and, I’m ashamed to say, for the other person:(  It’s easy to fall in love, the challenge is to stay in love.  After many years of life and learning, I think I have found my secret to staying in love.

One of the things that’s really important is to enjoy sharing everyday life with the one you love.  A tradition that my husband and I have is to go to our favorite breakfast spot at least 1-2 times a week, or the Waffle House if I’m starving😂  We don’t even chat a lot, we simply enjoy each others company.

Here is our favorite romantic breakfast spot.

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Abita Roasting co.  504 Water St. Madisonville, Louisiana

We always get the same thing every time.  I love their scrambled eggs and muffin top!  I was reading Throne of Glass on my Kindle. I’m a bit of a sci-fi nerd.

FullSizeRender (11)The friendly service here and the atmosphere, and of course the delicious food, is what keeps us coming back:)

💓The real secret I’ve found to staying in love is being able to laugh together.  I’m in 100% agreement with Audrey Hepburn who said,

I love people who make me laugh. I honestly think it’s the thing I like most, to laugh. It cures a multitude of ills. It’s probably the most important thing in a person.

It seemed like my man and me needed a good dose of fun today, so when he went out on an errand, here’s what I did… hehe;)

FullSizeRender (10)OMG, it was so much FUN!!  When I saw his car pulling up I quickly hid in the pantry closet and tried my darndest not to laugh.  When he came in the door, the game was on!  I think I laughed the whole time we were firing at each other.  Needless to say, I’m the dishwasher tonight;) LOL.  But it was so worth it!


The Art of Making Tea-Beginner

16265627_1317595031654592_6083181443600359016_nI’ve always been a coffee lover but, I have to admit, the health and wellness benefits of tea are appealing. There is something sweet and romantic about tea that I find intriguing.  A couple of weeks ago I saw an ad that a local yoga studio was hosting a workshop on the ‘Art of Tea Making’ so I was excited to satisfy my curiosity.

Herbologist and Yoga Instructor, Brandy Manguno, led the half yoga and half tea making workshop.  It was magnificent!  I left feeling relaxed and empowered to begin my tea adventure!

Brandy began by sharing how Earth gives healing to us by way of her plantlife.  king-pigeonIt’s so easy to pop a pill for our ailments, but if you want to give your body a chance to receive God-given organic methods for healing, tea making is a way to do that.

Whatever your issue there seems to be a tea remedy, i.e. cold–lemon balm; depression— skullcap; insect repellant–lavender; PMS–chamomile.

Here are some of the basics I learned from Brandy’s, “Art Of Tea Making Tea-Beginner” workshop:

Tea Basics 101

What you need:

  1. Make sure your tea is fresh and organic.  Here are websites that provide quality herbs:
  2. The scoop on prepackaged tea bags: The downside of tea bags is that the plants become more oxidized so they lose a large portion of their flavor and medicinal value.  The positive side is the convenience.  Selecting organic brands will ensure fewer chemicals and pesticides will make their way into your hot cup.
  3. Begin with 2- 3 ingredients.  A general guide is that your daytime base should include green tea and a nighttime base a chamomile.
  4. Brandy provided mesh tea balls for everyone.  I have found it easy to use for a newbie like me. Here is a link for a small mesh tea bag infuser:
  5. Tea should be stored in a sealed container as air tight as possible and in a cool, dark place.

How to steep your tea:

  1. Fill your mesh ball half to 3/4 full with herbs.  The herbs will expand in the water.
  2. Pour hot water, not boiling, over leaves, flowers and stems.  Pour boiling water over roots.
  3. Put a plate over your cup and let it steep for 8-10 minutes.
  4. Lick your plate! A lot of the nutrients are there;)
  5. Add honey, lemon, milk and enjoy!

Later on that week I shared with Brandy that I made tea from the herbs I mixed in class and it was nasty!😝  I gave it another shot and used less of my blend and it was much better.

Brandy said, give your tea a chance for your palatte to accept.  Treat tea making just like cooking.  You are learning to put a little more of this and a little less of that.

The Romantic Aspects of Tea:

The act of drinking tea can be a luxurious experience.  Savoring the smell and taking time to sip your tea is very soothing and relaxing. It’s a simple way for all of us busy folks to ground ourselves and have a bright spot in our day.

With Valentine’s Day almost here you might be wondering about a ‘modern day love potion.’

e70d0feb032d7941406e7510ac604c0aThere are many herbs that can boost libido for women and men.  A tea that Brandy mentioned for women is hops and for men, red clover, but there are many more!

When you live with many stresses in life it can take the passion out of your sails. Including tea time as a regular part of your day can recharge your batteries and provide a mental, physical and spiritual boost.  It’s a simple way to take control of your health.

If you would like more information on Brandy, her workshops, or a consultation her website is

Her tea blends are sold at Cosmic Karma in Mandeville.

Tea making is more of an adventure that I ever realized!  I hope this inspires you to take a plunge into the world of tea.  Enjoy Your Tea Adventure!



Secret To A Passionate Relationship

A lifetime of intimacy and attraction in your relationship is possible, and the secret lies in being physical together.  FYI, I’m not just talking about in the bedroom.

A recent survey by Vouchercloud revealed that 85% of couples who exercise together believe that it improved their relationships. Some couples went so far as to say training together “saved the relationship altogether.”

Jamey and Brenda Bertrand have been married 19 years, and they’ve always had a strong physical connection that was further strengthened by working out together.


Grow Your Bond

Brenda was somewhat active in high school and not as into exercising when her and Jamey met. Whereas Jamey was more into his workouts and wanted to share that part of his life with her.  In time she came to appreciate his help, and it brought them closer.

When you workout together you get to see another side of each other that is very appealing. You witness each other push through physical limitations and reach personal records.

Jamey shared how satisfying it has been for him to get to motivate his spouse into reaching levels that she thought she could never attain. “The smile they give you when they do accomplish goals are priceless.”

Attraction and Desire Never Diminishes

A lot of couples get caught up in the rat race of life with career, busy schedules, and having kids which can cause their sex lives to suffer.

Jamey and Brenda’s desire for one another has never worn off even with the raising of two daughters and the realities of life.

We have never experienced a drop in our sexual desire towards each other.  We both never let the raising our children effect that part of the relationship. We always made at least one day of the week to take a date or have some sort of romantic evening.

Exercising alone increases your endorphins, add to that an improved self-esteem from being in shape and you will experience a serious increase in sexual desire.

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When you look like this it’s easy to understand how physical fitness enhances the relationship:)

Quality Time Together

According to Psychology Today, ‘When work and other obligations take over the schedule, finding ways to keep your relationship a priority can make a difference.’

You don’t have to be exercise fanatics.  Jamey says that “Brenda is not the work out demon girl. Lol.  She enjoys going 2-3 times a week . No more than that. I’m just happy she does work out hard in those 3 days and we get to do it together.”

When you workout together you are spending time with one another and sharing a purpose that will last even when the kids are gone and you retire.  

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They both enjoy outside activities such as riding mountain bikes together or a slow jog around the LSU lakes.  Jamey says, “It’s gets the daily stress out of our systems.”

Nurture With Massages

One of the fun perks of working out together is that you both understand and appreciate receiving a good massage.  Jamey does a lot of running so needless to say, his feet are pretty calloused and sore.  Brenda gives him foot manicures and massages.  He in turn gives her neck and shoulder messages to help melt away her stress and workout the knots.  

A Life of Love and Freedom

The driving motivation for this couple is that they want to grow very old with each other.  They want to enjoy life and be able to function in their retirement age.  Jamey expressed that “only staying fit and healthy will we be able to achieve those great experiences such as traveling the world and going to exciting places in our retirement days.”

In honor of Valentine’s Day and a lifetime of passionate love, make an effort this weekend to get in a sweaty workout with your Sweetheart.

photoI’m a certified personal trainer/lifestyle fitness coach NESTA/Health Coach NDP.  I provide personal and group/couple training as well as health coaching.  I can work with you locally or out of state.  Send me a message, and I will be happy to share my services with you.





Lose the Love Handles For Good

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“Can you help me lose my love handles?”  This has been one of the most popular questions I’ve been asked as a personal trainer.  Here’s my challenge for all of you who are wondering:

This Valentine’s Day I want you to break up with with your love handles and leave them for a sexier hourglass shape.  That’s right, say good-bye✌️to those stubborn love handles and hello to a new relationship…with your body and with food:) ❤️‍

Sounds good huh? Letting go of what you don’t want anymore and actually believing it’s possible to have what you deserve is empowering.  Before you get too confident, if you’ve ever been through a break up you know the real challenge is days after when you begin missing the familiar routine and you’re tempted to go back to your old life.

You might have crazy thoughts like wanting to miss a workout, getting fast food for lunch or eating that bowl of ice cream at night.  Don’t let these cravings fool you!  They are not going to satisfy what you are really hungry for and are only poor substitutes.

Here’s how to lose the love handles for good!

1.  Let go of processed foods and instead eat whole nutrient dense foods.  You can’t expect to see results if you keep splurging on pizza, cookies and fried foods daily.  Letting go doesn’t mean you won’t feel cravings anymore; it just means that you are embracing a healthier lifestyle.

Processed foods are typically foods that come out of a package and/or contain more than 5 ingredients;

Whole foods are foods that were grown from the ground, picked from a tree or bush, swam in the ocean, or lean meats, or have come from an animal.  They typically have 5 ingredients or less if those ingredients are whole foods (not sugar, flour, etc ).

 You can have carbs and still lose your love handles!

Instead, swap out processed and refined carbohydrates for ‘slow carbs.’  Insulin surges can lead to love handles, so eating slow carbohydrates helps reduce this insulin spike after meals.   Slow carbs are the healthiest type of carbohydrates because they take a long time for your body to digest, and include most vegetables, fruits, nuts, legumes and dairy products.

2.  Have a well-rounded workout program that includes:

Interval training                                                                                                                                                      There are tons of studies showing that interval training produces more belly fat loss than slow cardio. You don’t want to train this intensely everyday because this can lead to overtraining and injury.  I recommend starting at 1-2 days a week.

Weight training                                                                                                                                                            I’m sure you all know, whether you’ve accepted this fact or not, that you can’t spot train.  However, you can train the total body and this will lead to overall fat loss.

3.  Tighten the obliques and core

Most of you perform too much direct ab and oblique work. I read an article in T Nation by Chad Waterbury that was an eye-opener for me. He used Britney Spears as an example of how the more you train a muscle, the bigger it will get.  When she first started her career she had a nice hourglass shape, but by overly training her abs, she built them up to where she actually increased the size of her waist.

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Theses photos show the difference in her waistline.  Although in the gladiator photo she is lean, she has lost that subtle hourglass shape.  Think about if you’re working your abs like a mad dog and you put on weight.  You got it; you have a thicker waist.

Training your abs 1-2 times a week is sufficient.  Here are some moves that will not thicken the waist, but will keep them tight.

  1.  Side Plank- This exercise strengthens your core, in the front and the back.
  2.  Russian Twist
  3. Bicycle Crunches  
  4. Hanging leg raises for beginners do leg raises on a mat.

I know it’s not easy letting go of unhealthy habits, but if you are tired of feeling bad about your weight, give yourself 100% to living the fit life.

One of the simplest ways to be happy is letting go of the things that make you sad.

I’m a certified personal trainer/lifestyle fitness coach NESTA/Health Coach NDP.  I provide personal and group training as well as health coaching.  I can work with you locally or out of state.  Send me a message, and I would be happy to share my services with you.

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