I {HEART} July 2014

by Jemma on July 31, 2014

in I Heart...

I can’t quite believe that I’m writing this post so soon!

I heart July 2014

July just flew by in a flash and I know that I keep repeating myself but this year speeding by like lightning.  I think the fact that I have been so busy this month has had something to do with it.  I’m telling you that it will Christmas soon…but I have to deliver a baby boy before all of that. :-)

holiday

The main focus for me this month was definitely rest and relaxation.  I never even dreamed that there would be so much to consider on the baby front and I was feeling a bit frazzled and overwhelmed when combining that with work too.  Alfie had the genius idea of booking a last-minute holiday, our last one together before the little man arrives!  It worked a treat.  Two restful and blissful weeks in the Mediterranean sunshine has really hit the spot.  I now feel a lot more focused on what I want and how to approach the labour and impending mama-hood. The holiday was definitely the calm before the beautiful storm – full holiday recap coming up soon!

blog-awards-logo

I’m so chuffed that Celery and Cupcakes has been short listed for Best Food Blog in the 2014 Cosmopolitan Blog Awards!!!  I’m so excited and incredibly thankful for all of your support.  It would be totally amazing if you could vote.  You can access the voting form here and I’m on page 9…eek!

PB Brownie 4

I shared some wonderful recipes on the blog too, like my Peanut Butter Cup Protein BrowniesStrawberry and Mango Sunshine SaladStrawberry, Mango & Coconut Chia Sundae and my Salted Almond Butter Flapjacks.

My favourite posts from July:

Blogiversary Month: sponsored posts and blogging

Making healthier choices whilst on holiday…but still having your cake and eating it!

Meal planning tips & FREE downloadable weekly meal planner

august

 Image source

August looks set to be another busy month for me.  As I mentioned earlier this month I have some business development plans in the pipeline that will affect my blog and I’m helping Alfie develop his business too.  There are also other major projects such as a bit of DIY around the house to prepare for my munchkin, my maternity shoot, packing my hospital bag, birthing classes and breast-feeding course too…phew!  

After my holiday I definitely don’t want to feel overwhelmed again, so will be concentrating on making some time for myself as I do tend to let work dominate sometimes. There’s a lot of exciting things coming up and I cannot wait to get stuck in!

How was July for you?  Do you have any exciting plans for August?

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Healthier choices on holiday

Summer holiday’s and over indulgence more often than not go hand-in-hand, and why not? You’re taking a relaxing break from the norm and daily routine, it’s a time to treat yourself and try the local delicacies. Seeing the sights and enjoying new and wonderful foods are all part of the experience.  Kick back and relax and forget about home for a week or so.  If you’re like the rest of the general public there is always that fear that you may potentially pile on the pounds as a result of the holiday excess and this will most likely stop you from enjoying yourself and your food.  

Having just come back from my summer holiday I know this feeling all too well.  My approach was to enjoy myself and not go off my usual eating habits too much by making wiser choices in the restaurants, allowing myself treats such as ice cream and pizza when I fancied it.  We also did a hell of a lot of walking and swimming as our form of gentle exercise.  There was no way that I was hitting the gym on holiday, but I generally enjoy being able to move and exploring the local boutiques and hiking were perfect for this.  All in all I think I managed to maintain a pretty healthy balance whilst on holiday and there are a few things that helped me along the way, which I share below: 

IMG_3583Dedicate a section of your plate to veggies

Sectioning off your plate in to three parts for protein, vegetables and carbohydrates can help increase your consumption of vegetables whilst on holiday.  Allocate half of your plate to vegetables or salad and then a quarter to protein and the other quarter to carbohydrates.   This way you can still enjoy all of your favourite foods in reasonable amounts, but still get a veggie packed and nutritious meal to boot.

IMG_3437 Make healthier choices at breakfast

It’s very tempting to get carried away with the buffet breakfasts and go up several times for more helpings.  I tended to alternate my days where I would opt for lighter breakfasts consisting of fruit and yoghurt and on other days I would check out the continental breads and cheeses for balance.  This way I got the best of both worlds over the two weeks and didn’t feel like I was missing out.  Also, starting the day with a healthy breakfast means that you are already on the right path to a good day of food with treats included. 

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Portion control

Let’s be honest, when on holiday it is very easy to let those portion sizes slide.  I found that the portions on holiday tended to be larger than my regular portions at home and on the odd occasion I couldn’t quite finish all of my food.  I’m all for giving your body what it needs, but listening to your body also means knowing when you are full and eating consciously.  Of course still enjoy the food on offer, but remember to keep your portions in check as you may end up eating more food that your body needs.   

IMG_3859 Be realistic

Going on holiday is no time to diet and lose weight; it’s time to have fun!  I’m a firm advocate of a healthy balance and believe that being restrictive and banning certain foods can lead to gorging on unhealthy foods later on.  It’s more about maintenance and not going too overboard, but still remembering to enjoy yourself too.

IMG_3579 Stay hydrated

More often than not, when our bellies rumble we automatically think that we are hungry.  However, hunger pangs can also signify thirst.  Before reaching for a snack to quench your hunger try drinking a glass of water first to make sure that you are not thirsty.  Obviously if the hunger persists then reach for that snack.  Additionally, drinking water over fizzy drinks will cut down your sugar intake massively, keep you hydrated and keeps your skin looking radiant.  You can also add a slice of lemon or lime to jazz it up a bit.  But, don’t forget to treat yourself to a cheeky cocktail…or three!

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Remember to eat snacks

You should never ignore your hunger pangs, do check before eating a snack that you aren’t actually thirsty first.  Having a healthy snack such as fruit, nuts, Greek yoghurt or a smoothie and help you to maintain stable blood sugar levels and prevent you from over eating on your next meal.

Keep moving

Even though I didn’t hit the gym whilst on holiday I still felt better and comforted by the fact that I was doing a lot of walking and swimming.   I wasn’t exactly pushing myself with either of these but the gentle exercise seemed to help and of course it was nice to maintain some kind of fitness level whilst away.   Exercise can come in many forms whether it’s playing tennis, hiking or water sports.  On holiday you will be having so much fun that you won’t even realise that you’re exercising. 

The most important thing is to enjoy yourself and have fun!  There is no point worrying about piling on the pounds on holiday as you might as well have stayed at home.  I found myself following many of these tips and found that they really helped me keep some kind of perspective whilst I was away – eat what I want but make healthy choices too.  Ideally the key is to balance things out with lots of water and veggies to mitigate the blow of all that delicious food. 

Are you going on holiday this summer?  Are you conscious about what you eat on holiday or do you just go with the flow?

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Blogiversary Month: sponsored posts and blogging

29 July 2014

Next month marks four years since I plucked up the courage to start my own blog.  I can honestly say that it has been one of the best life decisions that I have ever made.  What started as a hobby has become so much more, it’s more of a passion or obsession of mine – […]

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{Recipe} Peanut Butter Cup Protein Brownies

23 July 2014

Super fudgy, peanut butter heaven and chocolate indulgence.  This is one recipe that I have totally fallen in love with. Despite their calorific appearance these brownies actually live on the healthier side of life. They contain no butter, flour and are low in refined sugar.  Now I kid you not these are incredibly moreish, after […]

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{Contributed Post} Healthy body, beautiful skin

19 July 2014

There are many factors that can help to keep an individual’s skin looking and feeling healthy. A balanced, healthy diet can help people not only minimise, treat, and prevent certain skin problems, but also enhance their skin’s natural beauty. For example, studies show that about one third of individuals who suffer from acne can see […]

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{Fashion Friday} Dressing the bump on holiday

18 July 2014

Right now I’m probably melting in the heat on the Mediterranean coast, eating lots of great food and having a great time away.  A couple of days before packing my suitcase I tried on some of the shorts and swimwear that I took on my honeymoon last November and identified a major problem: they didn’t […]

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