Tag Archives: food

Spoil Your Pooch: Three Must-Haves For Your Dog

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Spoil Your Pooch: Three Must-Haves For Your Dog

You’d be hard pressed to find anyone around these days who doesn’t have a very spoiled and beloved doggy in their home. Dogs are just so good, you know? 

While we’re all dog lovers, our approaches to having an animal can be decidedly different. There are those of us who treat our puppers like family members, giving them every luxury, putting their needs and care above even our own, and sparing no expense for the best food, vet care, and more. Then of course, there are those who have a more hands off approach with their pets, loving them no less of course, but taking a more casual approach to pet ownership. 

No matter what your pet-parenting style is, these are three areas in which you should always “splurge”, to provide your pet (and yourself) with the best life possible:

Grooming:

This is especially true for dogs who have dense, heavy coats or special needs in terms of washing/cutting. Too many people neglect their dog’s coat, which can lead to health problems, bad hygiene, and more. A groomer is more than just a stylist for your pet. They also treat the dog’s skin, cut their nails, express glands, and so much more. 

And if you’re worried about cost, groomers are surprisingly inexpensive. You can find deals on sites like Groupon, subscribe to pet store services to get a discount, and even find independent contractors who will come to your home to groom your pet if you’re unable to get out or have an anxious dog. All of this is much more affordable than you think. 

Grooming your dog is the responsible, economical, and hygienic thing to do, especially in the summer. Prevent matted fur, fleas, and shedding all over your house by hiring an affordable groomer to pamper your pup. 

Obedience Training:

If you have a puppy or even an older dog that just can’t seem to behave, don’t snap. Dog owners who employ aggressive and/or violent discipline methods end up having anxious dogs who misbehave even more, or worse, violent dogs who end up being put down. By employing someone who will use aggressive dog training, you’ll ensure that your dog unlearns bad behaviors and learns good ones. Dog training courses are reasonably affordable and don’t take very long. Your dog will be home, behaving like a gentleman (or woman) in no time. 

Good Food:

We’re all guilty of grabbing a quick and cheap bag of that knock-off two-dollar-a-bag dog food once or twice when we’re pressed for time or are super broke. It happens. 

But generally speaking, spending the extra cash to buy your dog a healthy, nutritious brand of food will make a huge difference in their quality of life. Many dogs have dietary needs just like humans; whether they need something grain free, dairy free, non-allergenic, or need to avoid one or two specific ingredients. The stuff that you buy at the store is often full of corn, salt, and other fillers that can make your dog at the least, overweight and sluggish; at its worst, can seriously harm your dog. The same goes for dog treats. 

Sites like Chewy and other great in-person pet stores have excellent, nutritious dog food for a wide variety of needs that won’t break the bank. Doesn’t your dog deserve it? 

Don’t make life “ruff” for your dog if you don’t have to. By spending a little extra on these three goods/services, your pup will be happy, healthy, and provide you with years of companionship. You and your best friend will be happier than ever. 

Featured Image By: Kat Jayne

Don’t Be That Dog Owner

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Don’t Be That Dog Owner

If you pay attention to the news of animal-loving organizations such as The Dodo or your local animal shelter, you’re probably aware that some dogs have a hard time with terrible owners. Abandoned, malnourished, chained all day long in the garden, this is not what a dog’s life should be about. Thankfully, the world is full of caring people who go the extra length to bring joy and love into the lives of these dogs. 

As a dog lover, you know that you’ll never be the owner who neglects their pup. You love dogs, and that’s why yours gets plenty of food, a warm shelter, and regular walks. But, before you praise yourself for being the best dog owner in the country, you might want to check that you are, indeed, doing everything right. Sometimes, when we try to do the right thing, we end up doing our pets more harm than good. Don’t be the dog owner who unknowingly puts their pet at risk. 

Don’t let your dog be depressed:

You’ve got long days at work. So, to make sure your beloved Rex doesn’t feel bored or lonely, you’ve bought him a few toys. Here’s the thing, though. Your dog, just like you, needs to socialize to be happy. If you don’t take the time to play with your dog in the evening or to let him play with other dogs, you may be endangering Rex’s mental health. Did you know that dogs that don’t receive enough attention can get depressed? So, also consider how you could fulfill your dog’s social needs day after day. We get it: After a long and hectic day, all you want is to sit on the sofa and chill. But spending quality time with Rex can go a long way! 

Don’t leave your dog unprotected:

Rex doesn’t like fences. He can’t see what’s going on. 

You may not want to block your dog’s view, but you can’t leave Rex in an open garden. Your pup is likely to run away. If you don’t want to spend countless hours every day looking for your dog, you need to put fences up. Additionally, running into a foreign neighborhood could confuse or scare your pet. Cities are loud and filled with terrifying vehicles. A panicked dog could run amok, get injured, or even hurt someone. You don’t need your neighbor to complain about getting bitten by a dog, especially when it’s yours. Scared dogs can become aggressive because they believe they are under attack. 

It’s never just a little snack:

Sharing your snacks with your dog is the most natural thing. As a pet owner, you want to let your dog have something nice too. However, your sweet attention may be affecting your pet’s health. Treats should not become a symbol of your love. Too many dog owners are facilitating obesity when they only hope to be kind to their pups. Make sure to control portion sizes and to choose healthy snack options. 

Dog lovers are often guilty of putting their pets at risk without noticing it. Because you want the best for your pup, you can make the wrong decisions with dramatic consequences. The golden rule, when you are responsible for your pet’s health, is to ask yourself how your choices affect Rex’s mental and physical well being. 

Featured Image By: Pexels

Brunch Warriors ASSEMBLE!

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Brunch Warriors ASSEMBLE!

Hi! If you’re anything like me, then you never say no to a good brunch. Despite almost always being slightly hungover, I revel in a boozy Sunday brunch complete with hearty breakfast food and fifteen mimosas. Well… more like two mimosas but I definitely think I could polish off fifteen of the most delicious mimosa mash up I’ve ever heard of…

Allow me to introduce you to the Lemonade Mimosa. Yes, you heard it correctly. A mouthwatering sweet/tart combination that I just had to read on about when someone posted the recipe on Facebook. And, let me be the first to tell you, the following recipe that can be found on Delish.com sounds… Delish! Take a look and be sure to visit Delish for more food and drink inspiration to spice up your meals!

Ingredients:

  • 2 tsp. lemon zest
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 1 lemon, thinly sliced, plus a wedge for rimming
  • 1 bottle champagne
  • 2 c. lemonade or pink lemonade

Directions:

  1. In a shallow dish, mix lemon zest and sugar.
  2. Rim champagne flutes with a lemon wedge and dip in sugar mixture.
  3. Place one slice of lemon inside each champagne flute, bending if needed.
  4. Fill flute halfway with champagne and top with lemonade. Serve.

 

When the weather begins warming up, I need a drink that is crisp and refreshing which is why I usually favor the Moscow Mule. So, what could possibly be better than ice cold lemonade and champagne during a muggy summer morning? The answer is nothing, of course!

Treat your friends to a Sunday morning summer brunch, follow more simple and tasty recipes by Lena Abraham, and you’ll be the hostess with the mostess by the time the second round of Lemonade Mimosas starts being poured!

What is your favorite mimosa flavor? (I love mango!) How do you do Sunday brunch? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Dollar Tree Haul

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Dollar Tree Haul

Hello! If you’re anything like me, then I know you love some discount shopping! The Dollar Tree is my happy place and I always seem to be able to find a little treat or some food for chez moi at a fraction of the price of a normal grocery store. Speaking of going grocery shopping, I only go once every two to three months. Since I live alone, I stock up on everything I need to avoid weekly or even biweekly trips to the grocery.

However, I am in the phase of my extended time not grocery shopping where my cupboards are running a little bare. And by a little, I mean I’ve literally ate spaghetti every day for the past week, lol. Luckily, the Dollar Tree has my back and I was able to pick up all of these goodies for a whole thirteen bucks. Check it out:

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Lol, so I know that looks like an excessive amount of the Arizona nachos n’ cheese dip, reminiscent of an adult Lunchable, but it’s actually not enough. These nacho trays are my absolute favorite snack on the planet. The small, circular chips are crisp, the cheese is spicy, and it really is a perfect and highly convenient snack for when I’m at work. And, of course, you need some Sour Skittles to wash it all down. 😉

I am also very partial to the Shells & Cheese kit because you don’t need milk to make it, which is great, because I haven’t had milk in my apartment for months! One of these tiny boxes makes a staggering amount of mac n’ cheese and it ends up feeding me for at least three days. And for a whole dollar, you just can’t beat that.

Finally, I was so pleased with the last sets of fake eyelashes that I purchased from the Dollar Tree that I decided to restock my supply. The last fake lashes I got were long and in funky colors because it was around Halloween when I bought them. They applied like a dream and lasted all night so I’m looking forward to testing out my simple pairs of black lashes on a day where I don’t feel like doing my makeup. Keep tuning in to see how it works out! 😀

What is your favorite discount store to shop at? How often do you go grocery shopping? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Sweet Surprises: It Doesn’t Take Much Edition

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Sweet Surprises: It Doesn’t Take Much Edition

Hello everyone! With Valentine’s Day fast approaching, I thought I would take a minute to commemorate my darling boyfriend, Johnny, because he so deserves it! As we all know, Lil Red is a huge fan of sweet surprises and I like to show my gratitude for any type of gift that is treated to me with a blog post. So, here we are!

I, myself, am a huge fan of administering surprises even though I’m rotten at keeping my surprise a surprise! I feel like Johnny and I are always picking each other up a little something while we’re out and about whether it be a cool find at a thrift store or just grabbing dinner on the way home from work. Either way, it’s fun giving and receiving small treasures from the one you love best.

As the title of this post states, it really doesn’t take much to make me happy. In fact, just a six pack of tiny Diet Coke cans waiting for me in my fridge once I got home from a long day at work was enough to turn my day around. Let’s discuss:

pop

After my horrible oral surgery gone wrong last winter, I totally lost my taste for pop or coffee and became a fairly avid tea drinker. The harshness of the coffee’s caffeine and the pop’s carbonation was enough to put my stomach in knots, especially since I was used to only drinking the flat chocolatey chalk of Ensure for over a month and a half.

Once I was about four months out from my recovery and sunny days were a norm in Ohio again, the thought of an ice cold can of pop was enough to make my mouth water. And, as a bonus, I was able to drink it without an upset stomach. Back in the day, I was a Diet Coke fiend and could drink six cans a day, easily. Now, I might have one or two cans a week. But, when I do, it always hits the spot.

I haven’t been grocery shopping in a while and Johnny knows that I have been mooching on my mom and dad’s pop stash while I work from their home. So, he picked me up my own little cans when he went to the store after he got off from work. I came home and got a glass of wine from the fridge and he told me to look at the side compartment where my treat was cooling down for me.

I was so tickled because I always say that I could go for a pop when I never have it in the house and nine times out of ten he ends up hearing about it. He stifled my Diet Coke cravings for the time being because he thought of what I might need while he did his shopping. This was such a simple gesture but I felt so loved and taken care of and that’s what made it grand to me.

This Valentine’s Day, remember that it doesn’t matter what your gifts costed or if you can post a picture of the fancy meal you had on Instagram. What is really important is the thought that your partner put into it. I feel lucky that Johnny thinks of me when he’s going about his day to day life when we’re not together and I just know we are going to have the happiest Valentine’s Day together! ❤

What is a Sweet Surprise that you gave or received recently? How are you celebrating Valentine’s Day? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Why A Balanced Diet Is The Best Method For Health And Happiness

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Why A Balanced Diet Is The Best Method For Health And Happiness

We live in an age where people are following so many different diets to try and get the perfect figure or feel happier. But the big problem with this is that they are all, to an extent, fad diets. We live in a world where there’s so much fantastic food that the old expression “everything in moderation” is a far better option for everyone. But why should we avoid going for fad diets? And what can we do to make sure that we follow the rules of a balanced diet? Read on to find out!

There’s So Much Great Food Out There:

From a tres leches cake to Neapolitan ice cream, Aberdeen Angus burgers, and everything in between, there’s so much great food out there it can feel like hell depriving ourselves of these treats. Sometimes you’ve got to take inspiration from European cultures like the French. They know there’s so much fantastic food out there that they allow a little indulgence. When people opt for such a strict diet they’re doing it to make themselves feel better, but they seldom do. But if you can just follow the rule of eating healthily 80% of the time and allowing the rest for the things you really fancy, you can still eat all of that delicious food without feeling guilty.

A Diet Implies That It’s Temporary:

We’ve got to get rid of the word “diet” and think about it as a lifestyle change. When we go on a diet for a specific goal like losing weight, as soon as we end up hitting our goal it’s likely we will put it back on. You’ve got to think about the overall benefits of a lifestyle change. For example, eating the right foods can help your skin, make you feel healthier, and even sleep better. But when we go on a diet of such extremes we are pushing our psychological limits. We might even be calorie counting in our sleep! It’s far better to make a gradual swap to a new way of eating.

The Jury Is Still Out On Many Fad Diets:

Because there are many fad diets that purport to be the key to youth, a lot of these diets don’t have the evidence. The one true barometer when you change your eating patterns is to listen to how you feel. So many people go to such extremes to lose weight that they can feel the shock. A crash diet is something that people do before bikini season, but does going through all that psychological hardship make you feel happier? The one true test of eating well is a little bit of what you fancy combined with foods that you know make you feel good.

Everything in moderation is the key. And when you eat the things that your body wants it rewards you with extra energy and less need for sleep. If you can follow the 80/20 rule where you eat healthily 80% of the time and leave 20% for treats, you’re not depriving yourself mentally and will still reap the benefits.

Featured Image By: Pexels – CC0 Licence

The Best Spinach Artichoke Dip EVER

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The Best Spinach Artichoke Dip EVER

Hi! One of my favorite snack foods has to be spinach artichoke dip with tortilla chips or Wheat Thins. I love the cheesy goodness along with the crunch of your dipping utensil and I enjoy it so much that I can eat it by the fork full! One of my client’s moms just so happens to make the best spinach artichoke dip that I have ever tasted and I am going to share it with all of you. The secret ingredient? Water chestnuts! Prepare to drool in five, four, three, two, one…

Spinach Artichoke Dip

  • 1 bag of fresh spinach (Think the size of a salad mix)
  • 1 bar of Philadelphia cream cheese
  • 1 can of water chestnuts
  • 1 can of artichoke hearts
  • 1 small bag of shredded mozzarella cheese

Chop up the veggies, mix everything together, and bake until light brown on top.

This recipe for spinach artichoke dip surpasses any kind that I’ve ordered at the restaurant or bought at the store by a landslide. The variety of cheeses combined with the crisp crunch of the water chestnuts makes my taste buds do a dance for joy every time. This is the perfect treat to make for a party or game night with your friends (I’ve already made it quite a few times for my “crew” and it has been a hit.) … But you might want to double the batch as it will go quick!

What is your favorite snack food? What do you like to cook for entertaining guests? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah