Saturday, November 18, 2017

Quinn’s First Soccer Practice + My New Stand-Up Desk

I’ve partnered with VARIDESK to bring you this blog post. And, I have to admit, I never thought I’d be so enthusiastic about a desk. For real. In just a few weeks it has transformed how I work and feel. Read on to see why I love this stand-up desk so much!

It’s my favorite morning of the week – Saturday – because I get to spend it with my boys. This one starts with some early-morning ghost-busting. I mean, you gotta do what you gotta do to keep the family safe.

Once our home is cleared of ghosts, we head to CrossFit followed by a trip to Coffee Shack for donuts and iced coffee (aka my favorite morning ever).

We actually don’t spend too much time at Coffee Shack because we have important places to be. First stop: Target to buy Quinn his very first soccer ball.


The kid knows what he likes and picks out a black/blue/white beauty.

With soccer ball in hand, we head to Quinn’s first soccer practice. We signed him up for a late-fall program at a local sports center with other 2-5 year old kids.

Quinn loves his first official soccer practice and zooms all over the indoor field – both dribbling the ball and carrying it in his arms. We’re working on the picking up the ball thing! 🙂

Soccer is a lot of fun for all of us. After practice, we head home for lunch and nap time. On the menu (for me): An Israeli-inspired tasting plate. Yum!

While Quinn is napping, a special package arrives at our house: A new stand-up desk from VARIDESK. Woohoo!

When VARIDESK reached out about trying one of their desks, I was ALL about it. For months (maybe even years) now, I’ve talked about wanting a stand-up desk. They’re just so great for your health. Just some of the benefits of moving more/owning a standing desk: More energy, improved mood, more productivity, reduced back and neck pain, and increased metabolism.

I love living a healthy, active lifestyle, so with VARIDESK, I don’t have to stop being active during work. Instead of sitting on my rump all day, it has turned my usual sedentary routine into a more active experience and encourages more movement without disrupting my work routine. Moving more throughout the day definitely makes me feel better about all of the time I spend in front of my laptop!

You guys might remember that I have back issues due to scoliosis, so sitting for long periods of time makes the pain so much worse. And my posture, especially when I sit at desk, is terrible. I try to stay conscious of it, but the longer I work, the worse it gets. Standing definitely eliminates some of that strain on my neck and back. Long story short, my new PRODESK™ 48 in butcher block has changed the way I work, and I am pumped to have it in my life!

One of the things that I really love about this desk was how EASY it was to assemble. I didn’t need any tools, and it took me maybe 5 minutes to set it up. Check out my video below to see how simple it is to use!

After playing around with my new desk for awhile, we head out to take Murphy for a walk around the neighborhood.

We’ve had a crazy few weeks, so we decide to spend our Saturday night at home. We make dinner, play blanket forts, and then conclude the night with pajamas and popcorn on the couch while watching Toy Story 3, which is absolutely hilarious and probably my favorite of the Toy Story movies. Anyone else agree? So funny!

Question of the Day

Have you ever used a stand-up desk? If so, what’d you think? If not, would you want to try one? 

from Carrots 'N' Cake

Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts

PrimalYou really can’t go wrong with Brussels sprouts and bacon. Roasted together, this is a vegetable side dish fit for a holiday feast or even a simple weeknight meal. What makes this particular version extra tasty is a splash of Primal Kitchen® Balsamic Vinaigrette.

Tangy and sweet, Primal Kitchen Balsamic Vinaigrette isn’t just for greens. It’s a perfect marinade for vegetables, too. Made with avocado oil, this vinaigrette is a flavorful and healthy option for high-heat roasting and grilling and coats your veggies with monounsaturated, heart-healthy fats and antioxidants.

You’ll love Primal Kitchen Balsamic Vinaigrette with Brussels sprouts, but try it with any of your favorite roasted veggies. It’s an easy way to add special flavor and more nutrients to almost any type of roasted vegetable.

Servings: 4 to 6

Time in the Kitchen: 10 minutes, plus 35 minutes for roasting


Brussels sprouts

  • 1 ½ pounds Brussels sprouts, ends trimmed and cut in half (or thirds, if the sprouts are really big)
  • 3 tablespoons Primal Kitchen Balsamic Vinaigrette
  • 2 tablespoons avocado oil
  • 3 bacon slices, diced
  • Fresh herb for garnish, such as thyme, oregano or basil


Sprouts and Bacon

Preheat oven to 400Âș F. Line a baking sheet with foil.

Toss Brussels sprouts with the balsamic vinaigrette and avocado oil until coated. Season lightly with salt and pepper. Spread Brussels sprouts evenly in one layer on a rimmed baking sheet.

Scatter diced bacon on top.

Roast 35 minutes. Stir several times while roasting, to keep the Brussels sprouts from drying out. Brussels sprouts should be nicely browned before they come out of the oven.

Splash a little bit more Primal Kitchen Balsamic Vinaigrette on the Brussels sprouts before serving.

Sprinkle a fresh herb on top (such as thyme, oregano or basil). Serve warm or at room temperature.

PK Balsamic Brussels 2


The post Balsamic Roasted Brussels Sprouts appeared first on Mark's Daily Apple.

from Mark's Daily Apple

Clean Eating Gingerbread Shortbread Recipe

This time of year, cookie baking is fast becoming a family tradition for us, as it is for many families. I’m always on the lookout for new cookie recipes because so far, I haven’t found any that are… Read more →

from The Gracious Pantry