This week’s Foodie Friday profile is on another favorite area restaurant for outstanding soul food. My first time at South was last June. It was a great summer evening, valet parking is available down the street. When you first enter the restaurant there is a bar to the right and then the main dining area that also has counter seating as well. Upon entering the restaurant I noticed some diners were eating al fresco. The jazz lounge is adjacent to the main dining room. As I looked over the menu and wanted to try multiple dishes, I decided on the fried green tomatoes appetizer. It was beyond delicious and I missed that the tomatoes were served with shrimp remoulade. I devoured every bite on my plate. For my entree, I picked the Carolina shrimp & grits. Grits are one of my favorite breakfast foods. I can eat grits with bacon, sausage, shrimp, salmon croquettes, or fish. The best grits are made to perfection when they are creamy. The entree was superb. Lobster grits, with a Nola sauce and asparagus garnished with shrimp. The grits were creamy and cooked perfectly. I am anxious to go back again.
Archives for February 2019
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Winter and Workouts
The Winter is draining mentally and physically with the cold unpredictable weather and time change. I swear living on the east coast slows down my fitness motivation. When the weather gets cold, I want to come in and curl up on the sofa with a cup of hot tea. It is so easy to get sidetracked when the time goes back and daylight is shortened. Last week I was unmotivated and broke my workout streak. I think every now and again there is mental burnout so when I get in I just want to sit on the sofa until bedtime. This was exactly what I did last week.
Meal Planning Failed
My meal planning was off as well. Each week I try to plan meals for the weeks and that felt like a job. This usually means I spend more money out on food instead of preparing meals at home. It was a week full of chocolate due to Valentine’s Day. Chocolate is my favorite cheat snack in moderation. This week I went a little overboard.
How to Get Back on Track?
- Plan my workout schedule for three times a week
- Grocery shop for meal planning this week
- Do more protein this week including my whey protein
- Increase strength training for this week
- Schedule my yoga class
Vacations Destinations for Single Parents and Kids
I had no idea resorts offer deals for single parents traveling with kids. If you are planning trips for spring break or summer travels here are some great tips. These are places worth checking out for a travel package. I also learned some properties charge a single person supplement fee for one adult. The fee can be 10 to 100 percent of the standard accommodation charge. I found some that charge a single person supplement fee.
Sonesta Hilton Head
This hotel offers a supervised kids club, Just Us Kids program includes game time, entertainment, swimming, and arts and crafts. Half day or Full day passes are offered for an additional fee. The Family Package, a 2-night minimum required includes a $50 F&B credit and a $50 Leisure Activity Credit. the Leisure credit can be applied to bike rentals, kids camp or other on-property activities. Children ages 19 and under stay free if staying with an adult.
Vacation Express Smile Resorts
all-inclusive resorts, kids 2 to 12 eat and stay free. There is a single person supplement fee.
This resort offers Single Parent Fun Months during specific months throughout the year. The single person supplement fee is waived.
Grand Velas Single Parent Getaway
This property offers deals periodically when the single supplement is waived.
Hotels with Deals
Kids up to 19 stay free when sharing their parent’s room. Eat free applies to up to four kids 12 and under at any time of the day.
Kids stay free up to 18 if sharing the room with parents or grandparents.
Kid-Friendly Cruise Lines
MSC Cruise Lines
A cruise line that offers an All in One package for Single Parents.
Disney Cruise Lines
For single parents who need a short break, 3-4 day trips are offered. The cruise offers many activities for kids and adults.
The cruise ship offers the Dreamworks Experience with their favorite characters and Sitters at Sea program.
I sourced all of this information from this website
Do you have a favorite vacation destination with your kids?
Single on Valentine’s Day
I think I missed the memo that being single on Valentine’s Day is a curse. During this time each year, I see articles coaching people on how to cope with being single on Valentine’s Day. Don’t get me wrong I like the idea of celebrating with the one you love. However, being single on Valentine’s Day is no reason to be sad. I feel like it gives a reason to celebrate doing something special for yourself.
If You’re an Ex
A few weeks ago I saw on the news how to celebrate Valentine’s Day if you have an ex. Now there are activities if you have an ex, a zoo in El Paso Texas allows people to use ex’s name for a cockroach which is then fed to a meerkat. Hooters offers a coupon for ten free boneless wings by completing an online quiz and shredding an ex’s picture. All of this negative energy is no for me. Just move on and channel this energy to celebrate YOU!
My thoughts as a single woman and the idea of stressing over Valentine’s Day brings a few questions to mind. What happened to the idea of celebrating love every day? Why is being happy and loved dependent on being in a relationship? Is it possible to love yourself and love your time alone? Do we spend enough time loving ourselves? Are we emotionally and spiritually ready to share with another person? Why have standards and expectations become irrelevant?
One of my favorite movies is Love Jones. After watching the movie multiple times, I realized how much I missed in my 20s and 30s. I know now experiences should have no regrets or settle for less. My takeaway from the movie is the fact a loving relationship requires time, mutual respect, unconditional love, patience, and work. It was also eye-opening to see how much time is wasted when we are not clear with expectations.
My mantra is to CELEBRATE ME every day of the year.
Ways to Treat Yourself for the Month and Beyond
- Book a relaxing massage at a local spa
- Schedule an appointment for a facial
- Plan a treat to a special pedicure and manicure
- Order a dozen of roses for the month and for a real splurge order LeFleur roses (on my 50 wishlist)
- Buy a box of favorite chocolates(Turtles are my favorite)
- Make dinner reservations at a favorite restaurant
A Million Little Things
I binged watched the ABC series, A Million Little Things last year and I am hooked. It is the epitome of friendship and the story of 4 male best friends, (John, Gary, Eddie, and Gary) living in Boston. Three of the friends are married and one is single. They share their love of hockey, family, and friendship. The storyline is so emotionally charged and after the first episode it drew me in for more.
John is the rock of the entire group. He is the one who everyone can count on for everything. I realized everyone came to him with their problems but no one asked John if he was fine. John and Delilah are married with two kids. Their relationship appeared strained due to John’s long work hours and being there for everyone else. I think he checked out of his relationship in the first season, we are not certain why. Delilah was a stay at home. Her previous life before John is not covered in season one. Delilah clearly checked out when she decided to have an affair with Eddie. Eddie and Katherine are married with one child. Katherine is the female version of John. She is a hard-working and ambitious lawyer who works hard at maintaining a solid foundation at work and building their future. Eddie is a stay at home dad and occasional band member. It is obvious that Eddie has checked out of his marriage as well with the affair with Delilah. Rome and Regina are married with no kids but a strong bond. Rome struggles with depression and came very close to committing suicide. He finally realized he was suffering from depression and decided to take medication. I love how Regina supported his truth and his decision to seek help. Gary is single with a dog and non-committal. He starts a relationship with someone from his support group.
The turning point is when John ends his life. There were so many unanswered questions, mainly WHY? They all believed John had it all, his wife, kids, a successful business, but there was something missing in his life. Ashley, his executive assistant was the closest person to his business and she had no clue on the signs. The first half of season one introduces us to all of the characters and unravels all of their stories. Also, Maggie’s character is introduced as Gary’s new interest and also the women he met in his breast cancer support group.
When the next half of the season resumed, it traces all of John’s steps the day before he committed suicide. It answered a few more questions that left me on a cliffhanger. John’s largest real estate deal went in a different direction and he was in significant debt. It was not clear if this is why he ended his life or if there was more. John also knew about the affair between Delilah and Eddie. The day before his suicide he mapped out his plan. John made sure he took care of everyone in the friend circle. He purchased a building for Regina to have her own restaurant, he made the guys executors of his estate, Ashley was given tickets to Barcelona, he purchased an entire city block to protect the sale of his college apartment, left a video for Barbara Morgan, hand-written notes to Delilah and Barbara Morgan, and secretly gave keys to the college apartment to Ashley. John also knew about Eddie and Delilah. His last voicemail call to Eddie was to say “love one another”.
John’s death left a lot behind for everyone to process. Katherine and Eddie separated. Delilah finds out she’s pregnant with “John’s” baby. Katherine starts dating a partner in her law firm. Delilah has to go to Katherine for her real estate mess John left behind that included $18 million dollars in debt. John focused so much on the business deals that he forgot about his family. Maggie, Gary’s girlfriend is now a part of the friend circle. John’s death has left so many questions. Delilah’s letter from John provided some closure for her and their kids, however, it showed he was in a lot of pain. The big question that is not answered, who is Barbara Morgan? My theory is she is someone from John’s past that he carried a lot of guilt throughout his life.
My Thoughts on AMLT Friend Circle
The friend circle was carried out by John. He was the friend who encouraged, loved, counseled, and cared for everyone else’s needs. The one thing that sticks out is no one in the circle asked John how he was doing. There were no signs of his pain because he was so good at masking his feelings. He was the strong one of the circle and it was assumed everything was great. The conclusion I reached after watching season one is to check on strong friends.
One of my past times is baking during the holiday. The recipe is easy with the right tools. A few helpful tips for the perfect cookie is to use parchment paper, a rolling pin, a quality cookie sheet, a quality cookie cutter, and a timer. My favorite brand of bakeware is Wilton. These cookies bake very quickly so you have to watch the time.
1 cup Land O Lakes® Butter, softened
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 tablespoon vanilla
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
The full recipe is here
Mexican food is one of my favorite cuisines. Dining out at XoloTacos was a great night. This is my favorite Mexican restaurant in the area. The food was outstanding with every bite. We capped off dinner with dessert which was worth every calorie.
Every dish had fresh ingredients and the crispy empanadas were outstanding. I cannot wait to visit again and try the Mahi Mahi tacos, soup, a margarita, and dessert.
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received this product free for review purposes. All opinions shared are my own.
“Foot” and “For Her Products
Body Glide products are great for fitness activities and offer anti-chafing properties. The products included Foot, Skin Glide, For Her, and Body. Each product works to prevent chafing and blisters. I went to my 2nd yoga class and decided to try the “Foot” and “For Her” products.
The “Foot” product is solid and rubbed on to my feet very easily. It is fragrance-free and is white in color. It went onto my skin smooth and clear with no residue. I noticed after my class my feet were dry with no signs of perspiration. Our class is not considered hot yoga but the studio is a bit warm. Typically, I perspire around my bustline and thighs when I am working out. I used the “For Her” product on my bustline and inner thighs. My fitness activities are a reason to use these products. Both products are solid and roll on smooth, no residue, and are fragrance-free. After class, my leggings and sports bra were dry with no residue. The products are made with allergen-free, plant-derived ingredients. It is also vegan-approved and not tested on animals. The product is safe for kids.
This is week six of my home workouts. Last night, I did a Kettlebell Sculpt workout with one of my favorite YouTube videos @bodyfitbyamy. I used two of the body glide products. This type of workout is a series of compound movements plus cardio. For this workout, I applied body to my feet and despite the workout, my skin stayed dry and no irritation with my socks and sneaker. I put the For Her product on my bustline and on my thighs. The product is not drying to my skin which is a plus with dry skin. It was the same results with my leggings and sports bra staying dry with no chafing. For all of my workouts, I will definitely use the products to eliminate chafing and keep my workout clothes and feet dry.
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My fit lifestyle goals are to stay consistent and reverse the aging process. Each week my fitness regimen has provided me with more strength, endurance, and flexibility. A fit body gives me a high level of confidence due to my weekly results. According to fitness expert, there is correlation between fitness and a healthy sex life.
I am sharing fitness tips from Fitness Expert, Vince Sant, co-founder and lead trainer of VShred.
Sant explains that there’s a logical relationship between being fit and a more enjoyable sex life. Muscle tone and cardiovascular health help us perform better and have more gratifying orgasms. Mentally, physical fitness plays a huge roll in one’s confidence which is just as much a part of sex as your partner’s attraction to you.
For these 7 exercises, we are focusing on fortifying the stabilizing muscles in the pelvis, lower back, and core. This group of muscles is responsible for handling any position you get into with your partner and enjoy intense finales.
High-Intensity Interval Training (H.I.I.T)
“Your stamina and endurance are central to sex. Interval training helps increases just that. The great thing about H.I.I.T is that you can make it a part of any of your cardio and body weight routines,” says Sant who makes H.I.I.T a fundamental part of his fitness programs.
Lying Leg Raises
Not only does this move engage your lower abs, thighs, and glutes but it also challenges your hip flexor muscles. “The hip flexors include the psoas muscle which connects your spine to your legs. The Iliacus muscle located deep within the pelvis which helps rotate your thigh bone and is helpful in sustaining certain positions in bed, explains Sant. Other muscles engaged by this exercise are the rectus femoris (one of the four quads muscles), the pectineus muscle and the sartorius.
A strengthened core gives you the ability to maintain pleasurable positions for increased passion. For added benefit, use a stability ball to enhance your crunches. This will work your balance and stability as well as your back which will improve your thrusting ability and help prevent back injury.
If your partner likes you being on top you have to condition your upper body and core. Push-ups accomplish exactly that. Strengthening your arms, shoulders, and chest, push-ups help you to maintain a dominant thrust and increased energy. “Remember to find ways to practice progressive overload in your push-ups and other resistance training by adding weights to your exercises or increasing repetitions. Resistance training has been shown to increase the male sex hormone, Testosterone,” says Sant.
“Squats mostly work your glutes, hamstrings, and quadriceps,” says Sant. Everything from your abs, obliques, and lower back to your calves and ankle complex are engaged in this exercise as well. The Instagram model turned fitness mogul explains that “a lot of pleasurable positions for both partners need a stronger core and lower body to sustain the positions until orgasm.”
Stretch – The Seal Pose
People overlook stretching all the time. It is an important part of preparing for your physical activity both at the gym and in the bed. The lumbar extension aims at stretching the forward curve of the lumbar spine in your lower back. “You will be using your lower back a lot during sex and making sure the lower back is prepped for activity will prevent any pulled muscle or embarrassing moments,” says Sant
Stretch – The Butterfly
You want to avoid waking up next to your partner the morning after you’ve had great sex feeling sore and unable to move your legs. “The butterfly stretch helps target the groin and inner thigh. You should use this stretch after a variety of normal leg stretches to avoid overstretching the groin,” explains Sant. He maintains that this stretch is very helpful in warding off soreness in that hard-to-stretch area.
About V Shred:
V Shred is the fastest growing fitness and nutrition brand in the world offering online training programs designed to put the fun back into fitness and nutrition. V Shred provides a results-driven enduring lifestyle change instead of a frustrating battle that is easy to give up on. With a support network comprised of trusted accredited advisors and virtual personal trainers, people meet their fitness, nutrition, and goals.
The company, co-founded in 2015 by Nick Daniel, Roger Crandall, Kevin Pearn, and Vince Sant, sought out to create a healthy fitness movement specifically designed to deliver profound changes in your body with the minimal amount of workout time. V Shred has created some of the world’s most popular fitness and nutrition programs such as Fat Loss Extreme and Toned in 90 Days for women and men and Ripped in 90 Days for men.
The diet that accompanies the workouts in these comprehensive fitness programs, offers plenty of healthy food options and recipes. V Shred’s supportive coaches encourage “portion empowerment” which inspires people to eat and enjoy food knowing it’s the fuel they need to achieve the results they seek.
*received free of charge for review purposes only. All opinions shared are my own.
Declutter and Organizing
January is a good month to start organizing before spring arrives. After I watched “Tidying Up” with Marie Kondo on Netflix, I learned some valuable tips for de-cluttering and organizing my living space. My first project was de-cluttering my bedroom closet with the help of my twelve-year-old. After I eliminated my excess stuff, I donated a bag to charity and consigned the rest of the items. If you are trying to de-clutter consider donating to charity or consigning for extra cash. In addition to Goodwill, there is GreenDrop and they allow you to select a charity of choice.
Once I started de-cluttering my closet I thought about how to organize the stuff. The CleverMadeCrates are ideal for storage.
They are durable and fully collapsible for storing away. The crates assemble within seconds and are available in 15.8 L and as large as 62 L. The crate prices start at $13 or in packs of 2 or 3 starting at $30. The interlocking nesting system allows easy vertical stacking. My limited storage space makes these crates perfect for storing out of sight in bedroom closets or storage closets. The interior is deep enough to stack numerous items. For cleaning the crates hosing off or wiping down with a wet cloth is sufficient.
You can find the crates at Amazon, BedBathandBeyond, and Home Depot. Happy Organizing.