Review: NEW BariLife Lemonade Multivitamin Powder!

It’s no secret I haven’t been around!

June was busy with a trip to Mexico, and heading off to my highly anticipated trip to Greece!

Before either of those trips, work got especially crazy with new staffing policies that resulted in my existing 12-hour shifts becoming 16-hour shits 2-3 times a week. It’s been rough.

I’ve been home for a couple of weeks, and slammed at work. I have been a little down in the dumps about how crazy work has made me feel, and feeling like I need to really get back down to business with my health and wellness.

I connected with BariLife at my very first Your Weight Matters Convention with the Obesity Action Coalition in 2013. What I loved most about this company was that these products were developed by a Bariatric Surgeon who saw holes in the available supplements for his patients. He created a line of his own, to ensure that they got what they needed as post-ops, and to sustain far after their journeys commenced. I am huge on supporting people who support others, and BariLife is the epitome of that concept.

I’d tried a few of their protein bars at a couple of conventions, and loved them!

Recently, BariLife was kind enough to send me some of their new Lemonade Multivitamin Powder to try, and it’s a came changer.

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Most bariatric post-ops are all too familiar with the vitamin struggle. Some surgeries require mass amounts of vitamins every day for the rest of your life, others require a multivitamin and whatever you end up being deficient in as your body adjusts ( for me it was B-12 and Vitamin D). This multivitamin powder also meets all of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) Guidelines!

This lemonade multivitamin powder is unique in that not only is it formulated as the ideal multivitamin blend for a new post-op to use for the first 4-6 weeks of healing after surgery (and it even comes in unflavored or other flavor varieties), but it’s also something you can use as a more seasoned post-op such as myself!

I struggled a lot as a new post-op, because I am disgusted by any and all milk based products. The protein shake life was a tough one for me to adapt to! But since then, I’ve grown really used to the lifestyle and convenience of shaking up what my body needs and using every last drop. This product allows me to do that-and ensures that I get an extra 8 to 10 ounces of water in while I’m at it!

You can purchase BariLife Multivitamin Powder in travel-sized, one scoop packets, OR in 60-scoop tubs. These packets are going to make a great addition to my locker at work (for those days where my shift is extended and I know I won’t be home to my routine for awhile), and I’ll be needing a tub to have on the kitchen counter next to my blender, too!

But how does it taste, you’re wondering? I love that this powder mixes well, isn’t too chunky, and it’s true to claim-it tastes like lemonade! In addition to drinking it by itself, I can see it being a really good addition to some summer recipes…maybe a strawberry lemonade popsicle?! 

Overall, I am really glad I had the opportunity to try this product! It’s a welcome addition to my routine, and such an easy way to get more vitamins and water into my body! 

Not sure what you should be taking? Check out the BariLife Bariatric Vitamin Guide! It’s a great way to find out which BariLife products are best for you, and your post-op lifestyle!

What are your favorite multivitamin products? What works for you? I want to know! 

 

Model Meals Kitchen: My Review!

I’ve been a big fan of Model Meals for awhile now.

I started another round of Whole30 after getting back from Italy and starting to prepare for my upcoming photo shoot in Greece this summer.

In an effort to set myself up for success this time around, I decided to invest in Model Meals meal delivery to save myself some time, money, and sanity.

Working 12 hour night shifts on weekends, I have a hard time getting motivated to meal prep and actually use all of the food I buy. It’s easy enough to get all the shopping done, but then once the food is in the fridge, my life suddenly seems harder.

Enter: Model Meals!

I got my delivery on Sunday, May 7th. Currently the service delivers to Los Angeles, Orange County, San Diego, and Santa Barbara.

I ordered from the current menu:

  • Sonoma Chicken Salad + Market Greens with Balsamic Glaze
  • Chicken Fried Veggie “Rice”
  • Meatloaf with House Ketchup + Carrot Parsnip Pilaf
  • Pork Carnitas Taco with Celery Root “Tortilla”
  • Chorizo Scramble + Sweet Potato Hash
  • Bone Broth (there was a 2×1 special this week!)

Correct me if I’m wrong, but all of this sounds amazing!

I tried to get a few different items that sounded really good. Due to having my weight loss surgery in 2011, all of these meal portions really equate to 2-3 meals for me. So it’s a perfect way to get through the week, and I have some food on hand to prep for “filler” meals, as needed!

I’m really excited to try the bone broth also. A suggestion was to add a scoop of my Vital Proteins Collagen Powder and a teaspoon of ghee before bed as a “miracle potion,” and I’m ALL ABOUT that life.

So let’s get down to business-because I’m sure you’re wondering how the food was…some dishes don’t have photos…because as usual I was too excited to remember to snap one before eating!

Sonoma Chicken Salad + Market Greens with Balsamic Glaze


This is definitely one of my fave things EVER! It reminded me of my favorite chicken salad I usually buy at Trader Joe’s, but in totally compliant form! Also, the balsamic was pretty good…and I just came back from visiting a Tuscan balsamic estate, so I’m kind of an expert! Lol.

Chicken Fried Veggie “Rice”

I’m a big fan of the “riced” veggie trend, and this was interesting because it was a sweet potato rice! It was the perfect compliant way to enjoy fried rice, and it was a filling and hearty meal! Total comfort food, without the food coma! The flavor was different than I’d expected…really tangy due to I think the lime juice combined with the sweet potato made for a sweet/sour versus savory taste. Different, but still satisfying!

Meatloaf with House Ketchup + Carrot Parsnip Pilaf

Meatloaf is my jam! Oddly, I love tomatoes but despise ketchup. I started scraping this ketchup off and not even trying it, but then considered maybe without a ton of sugar, ketchup wouldn’t be so gross. And I was right! This added a little tang and zest to the meatloaf without that sickly sweet syrup-y taste. And the pilaf? Back to those riced veggies….love!

Pork Carnitas Tacos with Celery Root “Tortilla”


This dish had me at carnitas! The meat was tender and reheated well! It wasn’t bland or flavorless and I was really impressed with the texture of the tortillas! Also, the salsa verde was tangy, delicious, and the perfect consistency. Never in a million years would I have thought of something so clever as using celery root!

Chorizo Scramble + Sweet Potato Hash


I hate eggs. I hate them. I eat them out of necessity because it’s a fast and easy way to get protein and one of the staples for my successful Whole30. These eggs weren’t so bad. My eggs have to be cooked “hard,” but when I put my hash and chorizo in the skillet with some ghee, I added the egg and diced it up fine like the chorizo and it’s like they weren’t there! Also, that hash is an A+! I’m a fan of chorizo, but typically find the grease to be so overwhelming that I can’t eat it. That wasn’t the case with this bad-boy! I ate every bite, and my mouth didn’t feel like an oil slick!

Bone Broth

Every batch I’ve ever made has fallen short-but this stuff is good! With or without the addition of collagen peptides and ghee, it’s great for sipping on before bed, or even as a filler when I’m not totally sure if I’m actually hungry. It’s satiating and comforting and I take extra comfort in knowing it’s good for me.

The Verdict

Model Meals is a dream! It’s convenient. It came right on time, with text alerts when it was en route and again when it was delivered. I don’t have to stress about what is or isn’t in it, and even when not on Whole30, the menu offers a lot of variety and food that tastes great across the board! Also, while the meals may seem pricey, it’s not as pricey as what I spend sourcing organic/grass fed/etc ingredients and driving all over town for them (I’m talking to you grass fed beef knuckle bones), these meals are what I’d spend or less than eating a decent/healthy/compliant meal at a restaurant. And for the added convenience of doing nothing more than pre-heating them-although they’re mostly all created to be eaten cold/room temp if need be-I’m not complaining!

I have a special part of my heart reserved for companies that go above and beyond to really hear their customers, be sustainable, and take pride in the integrity of their product. I love that Model Meals scores high in every aspect, and I’m already looking forward to my latest delivery….especially a Green Chile Chicken Soup! I promise I’ll try to be better about photos next time.

If you head to the Model Meals website and sign up for their email newsletter, you’ll also get a new recipe in each edition!

I got my latest order this week:

  • Scotch Egg with Breakfast Potatoes
  • Shrimp and Sausage Sweet Potato “Paella”
  • Green Chile Chicken Soup
  • Buffalo Chicken Wings with Dill Potato Salad
  • Beef Taco Salad with Chipotle Ranch
  • BBQ Pulled Pork with Southern Slaw

Have you tried any meal services? What are your favorites? How do they help you? I want to know!

Bon Appetit!

Speedier Shipping and a New Namesake Label at ModCloth.com!

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking through my links.**

On a quest to pack the perfect suitcase for my Roman/Florentine holiday, I’ve been scouring the ModCLoth site for Sophia Loren-inspired looks to make my trip both stylish and memorable!

I was thrilled to snag this super cute travel wallet: It holds ID, passport, cards, boarding passes, a pen, cash, and more! It’s even got little labeled pockets and sections! Throw it in your purse or carry-on, and all of your documents and essentials are in one convenient place!

Some of the looks that hit my closet lately?


Found a
ModCloth look you’ve just got to have? Get it ASAP with their latest deal! Use code YESEXPRESS to get FREE express shipping on US orders of $150+ . Not sure you’re going to spend $150 bucks? You can also get $20 off orders of $100 or more! Tops, bottoms, fall-ready outerwear, and head-turning dresses — don’t wait to flaunt the looks you love. Get ’em today!

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Summer Clearance Sale at RentTheRunway!

**This post contains affiliate links and I will be compensated if you make a purchase after clicking through my links.**

Attention savvy shoppers! I’ve got some exciting news for you! Rent the Runway is holding a rare Clearance Sale! This means that you’ll be able to get designer dresses and accessories at up to 70% off! This special sale runs now through August 31st — and only while supplies last. I strongly encourage you to get your shop on today because quantities and sizes are limited!

So hop on over to Rent the Runway and check out their Clearance Sale page. You’re sure to find a few must-have pieces that need a new home in my-I mean-your closet!

What will YOU snag during this killer sale? There are tons of wedding-worthy dresses for those late summer and early fall receptions you’ll be attending, and some great finds to enhance your existing wardrobe when it comes to killer designer accessories! The options are limitless!

Here are a few sale items that I’m totally obsessed with:

Clover Canyon Flamenco Fire Sheath Sarah Magid Pink Masquerade Cuff Kay Unger See the Light Dress

Going Boho Glam with The Boudoir Divas!

So, at this point, no one is surprised.

I love, love, love The Boudoir Divas, and every experience I have with them tends to top and validate the last!

I was lucky enough to be featured on the morning news in 2013 doing a testimonial for The Boudoir Divas, and decided to cash in my free production the Divas were kind enough to offer me as the New Year began, and my 3 year anniversary with Sean approaches.

Truth is, as time goes by, I am still struggling with the weight I have re-gained….and it gets me feeling a little down when I have time to think about it. Between two full time jobs, trying to make time for the people I love and adore, and trying to pursue other things I am passionate about when I can, I just haven’t been able to maintain my weight loss like I want to.

Every time I step into The Boudoir Divas studio, my mindset instantly changes. I truly get into this “supermodel” zone, and everything feels perfect…my body, my expression, my confidence…they are just the way they’re supposed to be.

That is a POWERFUL feeling to evoke in a woman who is constantly consumed in her struggle with her weight and body image. And while I believe it’s something I find in myself when I am actually looking, I think that it’s a huge testament to this team of women and their mission statement. Look around the place, and there are constant reminders that YOU, just the way you are, are BEAUTIFUL.

The gorgeous studio, with all of it’s charming details truly feel like home, since the first time I stepped foot into it back in 2012!

The best part of this visit is that there were new little surprises everywhere! The Divas recently switched things up in the space, and it looks just as amazing with fresh twists here and there!

Also, I worked with Shelby McElroy, a different makeup artist this time (I think Peggy, who I’ve previously written about, has a bun in the oven)! Shelby was so fun and easy to talk to, and did an AMAZING job with my makeup. I really wish I would have gotten a better photo on my phone, but I was having lighting issues….

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but it was gold, glittery, and essentially, happiness personified! With lush lashes, beautiful contouring and highlighting, and a signature touch of sparkle (which, I didn’t even ASK for, by the way…she’s just THAT good), I was ready for the camera, and felt like a billion dollars! She currently does some work for The Divas, but actually has her own business doing makeup for weddings! I have her card stashed in my wallet for “you know when.” If you’re in the SD area and looking for a killer makeup artist (ahem, all my lovely bride-to-be’s out there), I definitely suggest you “like” her on Facebook and book her sooner than later…she’s almost booked for 2015 already! Also, be sure to follow her on Instagram and check out all the amazing looks she creates!

I had a lot of fun with this shoot, particularly, because I felt like I really killed it when bringing my vision together! I wanted kind of a soft color palette with feminine details, and I wanted the “crowning” glory to be a floral crown! My friend Jen at City Girl Finds knocked it OUT OF THE PARK with not one, but four gorgeous head pieces and 3 bouquets we were able to use as props throughout the shoot on the “Natural Light” set! You’ll have to excuse the quality…but I had to make sure I got a photo on my phone of each one…which didn’t do them justice!

Four floral masterpieces crafted by the amazing Je @CityGirlFinds in San Diego!

Four floral masterpieces crafted by the amazing Jen @ City Girl Finds in San Diego!

You’ll just have to wait for me to share a photo or two for the full gorgeousness to make itself evident! Make sure you check out her website in the meantime, and you can follow her on Facebook and Instagram as well!

Also, I visited my one and only Candace Givens at Ah La Mode Designs for those gorgeous glossy waves, and she even used a gold glitter shimmer spray to finish it off! It’s still got a little wave to it a week later, and I’m taking advantage of it! You can catch her on Instagram, as well!

It’s really important to note that working with Sarah on this visit was a complete JOY! She instantly made me feel comfortable (it doesn’t hurt that I tend to make myself comfortable every time I walk into the joint), and we had so much fun! I feel like she really understood my vision, and seeing the way those photos came out was just as disarming as ever…seeing the beauty that was captured and realizing, “Hey! That’s….me!”

I am so grateful for her vision that she brought to the concept and of course, I walked out with extra images because there were so many amazing ones to choose from. She is a genuine, friendly, and amazing person, and I am thrilled I ended up shooting with her (it has to be said that I haven’t anything short of amazing produced from any of the talented women there), and I cannot WAIT for my CD of images to arrive!

Fact of the matter is, I’ll never stop raving about The Boudoir Divas, and you can see why. The proof is in every experience they create the moment I walk in the door…and they’ve never treated me any different than that first visit each time I show up!

I highly, highly recommend you choose them for your San Diego Boudoir experience…it doesn’t get any better (believe me, I’ve gone to other places and you’ll notice I never shared those images-nor any experience, as there wasn’t one to speak of)!

Also, if you’re an aspiring boudoir photographer, the Divas have a ton of resources on their site/blog! They even host retreats every year (which always sell out), and help people hone their craft. And while I’m not an aspiring photographer, I am convinced you can’t learn from anyone better, period.

I can’t wait to share an image or two when they’re ready!

I hope you’re finding and embracing your beautiful today! You’re worth every kind word, every compliment, and every good feeling that comes your way. YOU ARE BEAUTIFUL!

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