Posts Tagged by holidays

5 Tips for Coping With Holiday Stress

The holidays are getting into full swing and with that comes STRESS!!  Holiday parties, cookies, shopping, family, crowds…it’s easy to get lost in it all and burn yourself out.  But it’s important to take a step back, relax and remember what the holidays are really about.    

Here are 5 tips to help you cope with the holiday stress and so you can start off the New Year with a bang!

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1. Plan

Start thinking about the holidays early. If you are hosting a party, start planning out your menu a few weeks ahead of time. To avoid the store crowds, make a list of your loved ones who you need to buy for well in advance and plan to find their favorite items online. The packed malls in December are enough to drive anyone insane!

2. Prioritize

There are things that we MUST do during the holidays and things we WANT to do. Often it can be hard to differentiate between the two. By prioritizing what needs to get done, you can finish those important tasks first, like buying a gift for your Grandmother, so you have time leftover to do some of those things you want to do, like volunteering at a soup kitchen.

3. Exercise

When all of these holiday obligations begin to pile up, exercise can often be the first thing to take a back seat. Make this one of your priorities! Not only can exercise burn off extra calories so you can enjoy those gingerbread men, but it also boosts your endorphins to help get you in the holiday spirit. You can even get creative with your exercise, like adding squats in as you decorate your tree!

4. Sleep

Like exercise, sleep is another one of those things that is less of a priority when we are busy. Skipping an hour or two of sleep to get a few extra things done over the holidays can actually do more harm than good. It can affect your metabolism and actually increase your stress level all on itโ€™s own. Make a point to keep up with 7 to 8 hours of good sleep a night.

5. Indulge

Yes, indulge! Trying to stay away from that plate of holiday cookies or that pitcher of eggnog can be very stressful and often lead to overeating of seemingly healthier options. Allow yourself to indulge a bit this time of year and enjoy the time with your friends and family. You donโ€™t have to go overboard, but a small slice of pumpkin pie or a helping of those buttery mashed potatoes is sure to put a smile on your face and take some of that holiday stress away.

I hope you enjoy the holiday season and don’t let stress get in the way of the real meaning of this season…to enjoy and appreciate your loved ones. ๐Ÿ™‚

***This post was originally written and posted for FitFluential.  Click here for the original post.***

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Roasted Brussel Sprouts with Bacon, Almonds, Cranberries & Feta

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The other night I was looking for a way to make the brussels sprouts I had into more of a “meal.”  Honestly I hadn’t gone shopping in a while so I was working with what I had leftover in the fridge.  I was having a craving for my favorite roasted brussels sprouts with bacon, but it needed something.  Then I found I had these:

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Dried cranberries, almonds and feta cheese.  The perfect salty-sweet-crunchy combo!  The awesome thing about this recipe…it’s the PERFECT compliment to all of those holiday meals coming up!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Bacon, Almonds, Cranberries and Feta
Serves 2
A delicious salty-sweet-crunchy version of roasted brussels sprouts!
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Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
35 min
Prep Time
5 min
Cook Time
35 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 slices thick-cut bacon, diced
  2. 20-30 brussels sprouts, halved or quartered
  3. Fresh ground pepper
  4. 1/4 cup almonds, chopped
  5. 1/4 cup dried cranberries, chopped
  6. 2 oz feta cheese, crumbled
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. Dice the bacon and cook in a small pan over medium heat for around 10 minutes until lightly browned but not cooked fully.
  3. Depending on the size, half or quarter the brussels sprouts and place on a sheet pan with fresh ground black pepper.
  4. Pour bacon along with the bacon fat over the brussels sprouts and toss to combine.
  5. Roast in the oven for 25 minutes or until browned.
  6. Transfer to a serving bowl and toss with almonds, cranberries and feta.
  7. Enjoy!
RAD Living http://www.rad-living.com/
This recipe is quick, easy, and absolutely delicious!  I’m pretty sure you could even get the most avid brussels sprouts hater to like these.  Enjoy!

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My First Thanksgiving

Ok well this really wasn’t my first Thanksgiving, but it’s the first one that I’ve spent at home.  Alone with my husband and my cats and it was perfect!  I think part of the reason the B and I aren’t a big fan of the holidays is that it always involves a ton of travel.  Our families live a minimum of 2 hours aways and then when you add in holiday traffic, it becomes an exhausting trek.  We’ve never spent a holiday at home and this year we wanted to make that a priority.  So that’s what we did…  

I was super excited to make my own turkey dinner but I didn’t want to deal with the hassle of a whole bird, so I decided to get a breast and two legs.  I brined them overnight so they would stay moist since the breast was boneless.

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That looks kind of gross….  But it really did help keep them moist, because they both came out delicious.

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Thanksgiving_Turkey_LegsThen I made a TON of sides, like I was having 8 people over.  Stuffing, mashed potatoes, green bean casserole, carrots…the works!  Can you say leftovers?!?

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And no Thanksgiving meal is complete without cranberry sauce, you know the good old jellied stuff.

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I also decided to make an apple pie, my first one.  It actually turned out pretty good and I topped it with some delicious caramel from Fat Toad Farm.  YUM!

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Thanksgiving_Apple_PieWe had a great day and have really enjoyed this kind of mini-vacation at home.  Hibernation has been in full effect ๐Ÿ™‚  It’s been fun creating our own traditions and enjoying a holiday in our own home.  Yes, I missed my family, but this was really important to us. 

How do you spend your holidays?

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