Vegan Chicken Salad

I came across this fantastic recipe by The Veggie Girl (check her out, her blog has great content), and wanted to share it with you.

This recipe is simple and you can make it in less than 5 minutes. If you’re vegetarian not vegan, you could add a hard boiled egg for even more protein. But keep in mind, chickpeas are a powerhouse of protein. Just one cup of chickpeas packs a whopping 39 grams! FYI, the average woman should be getting between 60-75 grams of protein daily.

Here’s the simple, delicious recipe –


  • 1 15-oz can chickpeas, drained & rinsed
  • ¼ cup dill pickles, finely chopped
  • ¾ cup purple onion, finely chopped
  • 2 ribs celery, diced
  • 2 Tbs vegan mayo
  • 2 tsp whole grain mustard
  • 2 tsp dried dill weed
  • ½ tsp ground black pepper
  • ¼ tsp pink himilayan sea salt
  • ¼ tsp turmeric


Sidebar – I always use organic when possible

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  1. First, using a potato masher or a fork, mash the chickpeas into a shredded texture, leaving a few chickpeas whole.

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2. Combine all remaining ingredients with the chickpeas

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3. I found this ah-mazing Hydroponically grown lettuce that I wanted to try. Hydroponically grown just means that the plants were grown in a nutrient rich solution and not soil. Plants get many of their nutrients from the soil and hydroponics can and does offer just as many nutrients as the soil grown plants. But…a word of caution, some hydroponic solutions are not organic – it just depends on the farm. You’ve got to do your research.

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If you’d rather have your Vegan Chicken Salad in a sandwich, you can top it off with some alfalfa sprouts, shaved carrots, spinach leaves, even black olives!

Thanks Veggie Girl, it’s delicious!


How to save Hundreds of $$ and feel better instantly

Want to promote healthy skin and proper digestion? Interested in a natural detoxifier? Water is a basic necessity. The body is more than two-thirds water, and keeping it hydrated is vital. Other reasons to have water as a regular part of your day include:

Healthy blood and bones.

Toxin elimination. Skip the fancy (and costly) detox plans. Plain water naturally helps remove toxins through the lymphatic system, intestines and kidneys. I just saved you hundreds of dollars – you’re welcome

Lubricated joints. Water helps protect against wear and tear and can even help reduce joint pain.

Proper digestion. Water helps prevent constipation by adding softness to stools and fluid to the colon.

Alertness. Even minor dehydration can lead to headaches, irritability, impaired concentration and fatigue. The human brain is 85 percent water; keeping it hydrated is essential for proper functioning. This happens to my husband all the time. He complains of a headache and I ask him to drink 1-2 glasses of water right away. Within 15 minutes, his headache disappears.

Healthy skin. Water hydrates from the inside out, helping to maintain elasticity of the skin.

The standard recommendation is to drink at least eight 8-ounce glasses a day. I don’t know that such a high volume is essential for everyone; however, I do know you need to drink throughout the day – this is easier if you keep a large glass or glass water bottle handy at all times. If you work in an office, carry around a glass water bottle and take it to meetings. You’ll not only make sure you’re hydrated but positively influence your co-workers to do the same! I have always recommended drinking high-quality water from a trustworthy source, or, if possible, getting a water-purification system for your home. If you are trying to wean yourself from soda, consider switching it out for sparkling water with a lime as a refreshing, healthful alternative.

Trust – it’s a funny thing

I only imagined, but honestly, I had no idea. The old saying holds true, you don’t know what you don’t know. And once you learn it, you can’t un-learn it. I was one who actually trusted labels…until now.

I just tried to watch the video Glass Walls by Sir Paul McCartney. I screamed out loud 3 times, cried like a baby and – for mature audiences only – I threw up. I only got through one minute and 45 seconds before I had to turn it off I was so sickened by what I saw.

The reason for me even attempting to watch this video was because I had always bought ‘cage-free’ eggs for my husband and yesterday learned in my Integrative Nutrition class that Food Label Claims are NOT always what you think they are. Words like free-range, grass-fed, natural, and organic seem to be everywhere and seem self-explanatory – but their actual meaning isn’t as crystal clear as I had hoped. Let me explain:

Antibiotic-free  –  Antibiotic-free means that an animal was not given antibiotics during its lifetime. Other phrases to indicate the same approach include ‘no antibiotics administered’ and ‘raised without antibiotics’.

Cage-free  –  Cage-free means that the birds (chicken, turkey, etc.) are raised without cages. What this doesn’t explain is whether the birds were raised outdoors on pasture or if they were raised indoors in overcrowded conditions. This one really upset me. In the video, if you can get past the first few seconds, they’ll show you cage-free birds in unbelievably crowded barns, living in their own feces. They’re fed hormones to the degree that they get so huge, their legs actually break under their own weight. It’s awful.

Fair trade  –  The fair trade label means that farmers and workers, often in developing countries, have received a fair wage and worked in acceptable conditions while growing and packaging the product.

Free-range  –  The use of the terms ‘free-range’ or ‘free-roaming’ are only defined by the USDA for egg and poultry production. The label can be used as long as the producers allow the birds access to the outdoors so that they can engage in natural behaviors. It does not necessarily mean that the products are cruelty-free or antibiotic-free or that the animals spent the majority of their time outdoors or outdoors at all. Claims are defined by the USDA, but are not certified by third-party inspectors. What??!? Yep, that’s correct, there are no third-party inspectors involved whatsoever.

GMO-free, Non-GMO, or No GMOs  –  GMOs, or genetically modified organisms, are plants or animals that have been genetically engineered with DNA from bacteria, viruses, or other plants, and animals. Products can be labeled “GMO-free’ if they are produced without being genetically engineered through the use of GMOs.

Grain-fed  –  Animals raised on a grain diet are labeled ‘grain-fed’. Check the label for a ‘100% vegetarian diet’ claim to ensure that the animals were given feed containing no animal by-product. As for animal by-product, I’ll save that disgusting blog post for another time.

Grass-fed  –  This means the animals were fed grass, their natural diet, rather than grains. In addition to being more humane, grass-fed meat is more lean and lower in fat and calories than grain-fed meat. Grass-fed animals are not fed grain, animal by-products, synthetic hormones, or antibiotics to promote growth or prevent disease; although they may have been given antibiotics to treat disease. A ‘grass-fed’ label doesn’t mean the animal necessarily ate grass its entire life. Some grass-fed cattle are grain-finished, which means they ate grain from a feedlot prior to slaughter. Seriously L Look for ‘grass-fed’ and ‘grass-finished’.

Hormone-free  –  The USDA has prohibited use of the term ‘hormone-free’ but animals that were raised without added growth hormones can be labeled ‘no hormones administered’ or ‘no added hormones’. By law, hogs and poultry cannot be given any hormones. If the meats you are buying are not clearly labeled, ask your farmer or butcher if they are free from hormones.

Pasture-raised  –  ‘Pasture-raised’ indicates that the animal was raised on a pasture where it was able to eat nutritious grasses and other plants rather than being fattened on grain in a feedlot or factory barn. Pasturing livestock and poultry is a traditional farming technique that allows animals to be raised in a humane manner. Animals are able to move around freely and carry out their natural behaviors. This term is very similar to ‘grass-fed’, thought the term ‘pasture-raised’ indicates more clearly that the animal was raised outdoors on a pasture.

You can’t un-learn what you learn. I hope this outline helps just a bit.

Read your labels, educate yourself as best you can and try and make the best choices for you and your family. I’m here to help answer any questions you may have and if I don’t know the answer, we can research it together!


It goes without saying that the perfect lip gloss is definitely hard to find. You want something that has amazing color, isn’t sticky, stays on after a sip from a drink, and doesn’t contain harmful ingredients. Your search stops here… Our Beautycounter Lip Gloss checks all the boxes.

Made with carnauba wax, jojoba oil, and vitamin C, Beautycounter Lip Gloss stays smooth and fresh longer. Each sheer color conditions and moisturizes lips and adds lots of shine. And my honey doesn’t mind kissing me when I’m wearing it. Read on for five reasons our Lip Gloss comes out on top:


 1. Smooth Operator

“Sticky lip gloss is the best!” said no one ever. Our formula contains carnauba wax, a native plant to Brazil known as ‘the queen of waxes’, and vitamin E, which has powerful antioxidants with skin conditioning properties. Together they promote long-lasting hydration and shine, without the stickiness.


  1. Glossed in the Moment

The high-definition gloss comes from nourishing jojoba seed oil, which absorbs easily and provides immediate moisture, while candelilla wax smooths and shines. The teardrop applicator has a small opening in the center to pick up more of the formula. Just dip it once and glide it on.


  1. Real Vanilla? Makes Scents

What’s that subtly sweet (but not super sugary!) scent? Pure vanilla extract. It took us over a year to source the perfect vanilla for our gloss because we never use synthetic fragrances, only pure essential extracts.


Watch out for the word “Fragrance” on common product labels! It’s usually a blend of various chemical compounds, many of which are common allergens or have links to hormone disruption. And since are they protected as trade secrets, there is no way to know for sure what ingredients are in the fragrance formula.


  1. Layer on the Luster

Lip Gloss looks great alone, but even bolder layered with Sheer Lipstick or Cream Blusher. I love our Cream Blusher because, if I forget my Lip Gloss or Lip Sheer, I just use my Cream Blusher on my lips! Mix and match for a new hue… Go as light or as dark as you want! If you struggle with dry lips, try applying Lip Conditioner before the gloss for extra hydration. I also love using the Lip Conditioner at bedtime, to wake with hydrated lips.


  1. A Shade for Every Occasion

From Buff to Ruby to Fig, these infinitely wearable shades have been tested to complement every skin tone. I’m a redhead but don’t really have porcelain skin and I love all the shades. I can glide on Peony for a pop of coral color before brunch, or Dahlia, a rosey pink shade to go with my favorite summer dress.

Stay safe out there this Summer!

Watermelon = Summer!

I found this amazing Watermelon, Arugula and Pickled Onion Salad recipe and can’t wait to try it. I feel badly tho – I’m not sure where I found it!! But, since I’m a Health Coach in training, I have to tell you about the health benefits 😉

Watermelon has a world of health benefits – it’s packed with nutrients, significant levels of vitamins A, B6 and C, and loads of lycopene, antioxidants and amino acids. Hello Summer!

Serves 8

For the salad and vinaigrette:

1 small to medium seedless watermelon
1/8 cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup olive oil
4 cups arugula
1/2 cup crumbled goat or feta cheese
For the pickled onions:

1/2 cup thinly-sliced red onion
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns

Cube the watermelon into bite-sized pieces. Set aside.

To prepare pickled onions, thinly slice the onion, using mandoline for even cuts if you have one available. In a small saucepan, combine the remaining pickling ingredients and bring to rapid boil, then remove from the heat. Place the sliced onions in heat-proof jar and pour the liquid over to evenly coat. The onions should soften within 15 minutes, depending on thickness. In a small bowl, combine the red wine vinegar, lemon juice, and salt. Slowly whisk in the olive oil until incorporated. In a mixing bowl, lightly dress and the arugula to taste and toss, then place it in a serving dish. Top it with the cubed watermelon, crumbled cheese, and pickled onions. Finish with any remaining vinaigrette, if desired.

Illness scares the crap out of me!

Just yesterday someone asked me why I was so into this health and wellness thing. She made the comment that all of my FB and IG posts are of healthy recipes, articles about living a healthy lifestyle and eating ‘green veggies’ (her words). At first I thought, she was exaggerating and then thought, well…that’s an odd question to ask someone who’s studying for her Health & Wellness Coach Certification. But then I stopped and really gave it some deep thought. So I thought back, years ago, to 1999 and a comment one of my business associates made.  Yep, I still remember it.

I was working at my desk and had my usual snack; a bowl of nuts, berries and dried fruit, when a co-worker popped his head into my office and said, “you do realize you eat like a bird, right?” and we both laughed. Yes Joe Lilly, if you’re reading this, that co-worker was you.

Then I thought back even further, to 1993-94 (isn’t it odd how you remember the things that really hit you hard) where I was working in an office. Every day between 2 – 3pm, most of the office employees would congregate in the little kitchenette and stand by the vending machine to catch up with one another about family, what they watched on tv the night before, etc. A co-worker made a comment (that I felt was hurtful) on how unsocial she thought I was because she never saw me at the vending machine chatting and sharing stories. Isn’t it odd? I never even thought to go near the vending machine because I knew there was nothing in it I wanted to eat! It had nothing to do with me not wanting to be social and everything to do with my eating habits and lifestyle.

So yesterday, when this woman asked why I was so into this health and wellness thing, it made me think about my WHY. And the truth is really, really simple…illness and disease scares the crap out of me.

I’ve watched a woman die of emphysema in her own living room, lying in a hospital bed, hooked up to oxygen because she couldn’t breathe on her own. I was shocked beyond belief when, on her last day on this great earth, she asked for a cigarette. At the time I thought, gosh, I wonder if this was truly her destiny or if this could have been avoided.  I’ve watched a man die from diabetes because of his diet. He asked his family to make sure they had donuts served at his wake because they were his favorite food. Again, did his life really have to end like this? I’ve watched a woman get skin cancer and have half her nose removed and then fall into a deep depression because of her appearance. My heart ached for what she was going through. I’ve had stomach issues all throughout my childhood and well into my 20’s until I finally realized it was my diet and lifestyle that was causing all the pain. I went through cervical cancer in my early 30’s and thank goodness we had already been blessed with 3 beautiful boys. Was it all the stress in my life that brought it on? I guess one never knows what ones destiny truly is but if mine is supposed to be cut short and I can avoid that, I’m going to do it!

Long story short – My why? Why am I so into this health and wellness thing? I love life. Seriously – I love life. I’m one of ‘those people’ that greets every morning as a brand new day. I wake and tell myself ‘something wonderful is going to happen today’ and at the end of the day, figure out which one wonderful thing I can be thankful for.  To my 3 boys who are reading this post right now, who are rolling their eyes, laughing and saying, “that’s my Mom, rainbows and butterflies”, I want to say – I want to be around for a very long time and enjoy everything that life has to offer. I don’t want to spend my days and all my money in a Dr’s office, or popping pills or in a hospital bed. I want to treat my body with dignity and respect. But, don’t get me wrong, I have an occasional ice cream and regret it later. Or that piece of chocolate cake – I’m not into absolutes at all, I do want to LIVE. But I believe that our health is our greatest asset and without it? Well…I think you know the end result to that.

Has anyone every described you as mediocre?

I’m always interested in what the top 10% of highly successful people do on a daily basis. Interested…who am I kidding? I get obsessed with it and find it fascinating. What keeps coming up when I’m researching is – they are highly disciplined in bettering themselves daily. And when I say daily, I mean every, single day, day after day after day.

Amazingly talented and highly successful people are born just like you and me but they develop a different relationship to practice. These people spend 90% of their day practicing/training, honing their skills to be the very best they can possibly be. The reoccurring theme continues to be, practice, practice, and practice more.

Our lives are all about practice and performance – and think about it, this is your job for the rest of your life! We’re all graded in life, whether in the office, on the field, raising children, in whatever it is you do day to day. So if you’re a swimmer and training for the Olympics, don’t you want the Gold? If you’re a Sales Manager, don’t you want to be #1? If you’re a student and studying for a test, don’t you want to ace it? If you’re a stay at home Mom and raising children, don’t you want to teach, mentor and coach your children to be the very best they can be? Of course you do!

Bo Eason (someone I follow) recommends this read: The Little Book of Talent by Daniel Coyle. Daniel Coyle is the New York Times bestselling author of The Talent Code, The Little Book of Talent, Lance Armstrong’s War, The Secret Race and Hardball: A Season in the Projects. He is at work now on a new book about the science of successful groups. I’m ordering The Little Book of Talent today. Order from Amazon

Bo says, “If you refuse this call, this commitment to practice, you have sealed your fate of mediocrity”. Yikes! I don’t know about you but I’ve never wanted to be mediocre.

My commitment to myself is to first look at my day to day and figure out what percentage I spend on practicing to be the best in my industry. If I decide that I spend 40% on training and practice, I’ll up my game to 50% and so on. Taking small but focused steps gets you to where you want to be.

Ghengis Khan, when asked “How does a soldier fight in battle?” his answer, “the same way as he trains”.

You’re Never Going To Be Ready

Stepping outside of your comfort zone is just that, uncomfortable. But…doesn’t it feel invigorating when you do it? When you climb that wall, speak in front of colleagues, nail that yoga pose, enroll in a college course, buy that new condo, take and post that selfie, get a profile done on

The Wizard Of Oz has always been one of my favorite movies. I love watching each one of the characters step outside of their comfort zone and learn something new about themselves in the process.

When I’m about to do something that is completely outside my comfort zone my stomach turns, my palms start to get clammy and I actually get a bit lightheaded. I know I want to do this thing that terrifies me but my body is screaming, “don’t do it! I’ll keep you safe in this space of mediocrity” or “you’ve been comfortably numb on this cozy couch for so long, don’t step off the cliff now” but my gut is telling me this IS the right next step. There’s a trick I’ve learned that helps move me forward, helps me to step off the cliff. I don’t think to myself, “holy moly, I’m terrified, what am I doing?” Instead, I think, “wow, I’m excited, this IS invigorating and that is why I’m feeling this way!” and it changes my physical being completely! All of a sudden I remember how ready I am for this next step, AND how fabulous I’m going to feel AFTER I’ve done this thing that I’m now so excited to do.

I ground myself in the courage I have to push myself forward and think You’ve Always Had The Power My Dear, You Just Had To Learn It For Yourself. Thanks Glinda, you were always my favorite character.

If you’re brave enough to share some of your courageous stories, times when you’ve stepped outside of your comfort zone and rocked it, I’d love to hear them! Comment below and watch how, with sharing your story, you’ll encourage others  to do the same.