HEAL YOURSELF

YOU GUYS.... I asked you all what your favorite old, new and up and coming apps were and you all answered! So, I've slowly been doing some research and trying them out (even wrote about them in the Soap Digest article on stands now where I'm also highlighting the apps Ographr and Helpr). I want to share the ones you may not have heard me talk about yet starting with HEAL.

I wrote about 1 second everyday in THIS post here, the app that (in my opinion) is reinventing the home video diary. OGRAPHR is changing the way we document the events in our lives and HELPR is transforming the work/family balance with childcare. Now, (in my humble opinion) I think HEAL is re-humanizing the way we see doctors through modern technology. In Soap Digest, I mentioned all the reasons I would love to have an in-home doctor's appointment. I read the reviews. People are overjoyed by Heal's highly vetted, certified doctors and the ease of not having to leave the house while ill. If you're a parent with young children, you know how frustrating and exhausting it is to have to lug the kiddos to the doctor while sick (and expose them to germs in the waiting room) or bring them to the pediatrician when they already have a compromised immune system. I'm often in different locations filming and need someone quickly to come "heal" me for shooting the next day. Heal will be a godsend! And let's face it, people in general are babies when they are sick! The last thing my husband wants to do is leave the house if he's under the weather.

I often find it interesting who is "backing" these new ventures. Fidelity ContraFund, the Ellison family and  Lionel Richie are a few of the investors that believe in creating a more personal and convenient experience for patients and doctors.

The doctor visits you in the comfort of your own home 12 hours a day, 365 days a year and even takes insurance! If you're not covered at the moment, it's $99. To get started, download the app, then go to "register." You can put your zip code in to see if HEAL is offered in your area. If it currently is not, you can sign up for an email notification when it will be serving your area! Let's get this in more cities. It's a great service that will serve us all when we are in a pinch. For more info, visit heal.com

HealAPp

Please let me know if you try it or have tried this new trend of in home doctors?? Hope you all have a great weekend and keep in touch. You know I love hearing from you all. 

xoxo

AAJ

SOAP OPERA DIGEST column- I need your help!

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Maybe you've been in the supermarket and grabbed a Soap Digest in line? Maybe you flipped through and caught the new column I'm contributing about parenting and everyday life? Or maybe you're a diehard fan of the soap genre and get the magazine in the mail!? Many, many, many people do!!

I'm so excited to be contributing fun tidbits in this new column. The first one was on time management... how to be a more efficient person (because I need all the help I can get). Slow cookers topped the list of items that are helping our household....If you missed the column the first time around, you can take a look below. 

THE FIRST COLUMN: more daily efficiency

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By the way, Joel and I have been working on our diet after the food intolerance test. Some of you were so encouraging- thank you. I will write a post about that all soon. 

THE SECOND COLUMN: bag lady

The second column was a question I am asked constantly... what is in my diaper bag? It seems like a basic question, but I remember being pregnant or just after having Hayden wondering what other women were toting around all day. I remember my dear friends giving me a huge diaper bag when he was first born... they said I'll probably be like everyone else and learn the hard way. At first, you'll bring the house with you, then over time, you'll par down and realize you don't need to travel to every location in your city with half your nursery. Ha. They were right. Take a peek below:

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THE THIRD COLUMN: gift guide for the hurried parent

I was JUST at the market and saw the 3rd column on the stands. It's the basic gift guide for moms/parents (or kind of for anyone needing gifts). It was fun to put this one together. Ideas include DIY teacher gifts to a great go-to for girlfriends, sister, boss, etc. I'm really loving doing this type of column/project. It's a fun creative outlet and genuine opportunity to share with you all. The holiday gift list was a bit longer than the magazine could allow, so I'm making an extended list that will be up very soon (one list is HERE already for the under $25 gift ideas).

WHAT I NEED FROM YOU: what would you like to read about in 2018 Soap Digest columns? I would love to know what interests you... the best "non- mom" mom jeans? Technology? More kitchen type activity? Family travel?  Please leave your ideas in the comments section below. I'm excited to read them. Thanks, Y'all!

 

SLOW COOKER EASY RECIPES!

Hello!! A quick couple of things... I've started wanting to cook more, but a) am not great at it and b) hard to find the proper time needed. If you follow me on INSTAGRAM and watch the stories, you've seen us trying out new things in the kitchen... from Hello Fresh delivery system to the slow cooker. I've trying to learn the best new ways to be time efficient and healthy. I'm not so good at it all, but the intention is there! I recently discussed it all in a new column for Soap Digest, too. ps-This post was suppose to go up over a week ago. Somehow, it never got published. So, forgive the delay, please, and thank you for your patience. 

Photo by  @Ographr

Photo by @Ographr

My girlfriend Willa Ford (@wfordinteriors) shared these simple gems with me below. I'm just starting out discussing more food items on the blog, so bear with me here. Not caught up yet on great photos and such, this is a work in progress. If you're well versed in the kitchen and with the crock pot type dishes, this may seem remedial. But, maybe you'll find a new twist on an old faithful recipe. Hope so!

SHREDDED CHICKEN TACOS - so easy, it doesn't seem right.  You will need:

  • 4 chicken breast

  • 2 large jars of Pace Picante Salsa

  • tortillas

  • Your favorite toppings-- mine are shredded lettuce, shredded cheese, low-fat sour cream, diced avocado

Put chicken breast on bottom of slow cooker. Pour the salsa on top. Cook on slow for 8-10 hours or high for 6 hours. If frozen, cook on slow for 12 hours.  Remove chicken when done and shred in a different bowl. 

Make tacos as usual. I can't get enough of these. It's so easy and the salsa gives you so much bang for your buck!! Tastes much more gourmet than it is.

For extra credit: Use the juice left to make chicken tortilla soup. Add potatoes, carrots to thicken soup. Cook another 3-4 hours. 

MEATLOAF 

  • 1.5 lbs of ground beef or turkey

  • French onion soup packet

  • Chicken stock

  • Bread crumbs

  • 2 eggs

  • 1 tsp of minced garlic

  • Chopped onion

Mix all ingredients together. Make two smaller long dome shaped loafs. Put in crockpot. Smother the tops with ketchup. Cook on slow for 6-8 hours. Voila! 

Here are two options (high and low) for slow cookers:

 

I will be adding more recipes! I enjoyed getting recipes from you all, so I added THIS POST.  I'd LOVE to SHARE MORE OF YOUR favorite slow cooker recipes and photos of the finished meal. Please feel free to contact us sharing your favorites (or post in comments below). Happy Weekend!

Body After Baby

I have to thank Soap Opera Digest for their latest interview where Mara Levinsky got me talking about body after baby (on stands now- with a blurb on the cover!). I haven't written much about this topic because in no way do I feel like an expert. However, I think it's good to talk about the reality of life and getting in shape after having a baby. Or the reality of what it takes to get in better shape for anyone: discipline and work. The article goes in depth about the things that I didn't expect, the struggles and the joys of postparatum. Let me know what you think!

This photoshoot was two weeks after giving birth, right before I went back to shoot GENERAL HOSPITAL. I was EXHAUSTED and emotional and elated simultaneously. 

I took long walks several times a week and kept as active as my energy level allowed during the pregnancy, trying not to gain unnecessary weight. Hayden got fairly big toward the end (I wrote this post after the baby shower, and this post was three days before I gave birth). I admit, I was lucky I initially lost some of the pounds I gained, but it started to creep back. I had to eat more to keep breastfeeding and wasn't working out enough. The struggle to get back in the same shape I was in pre-pregnancy has been real for me. I haven't done it yet, as I discuss in the article. My body looks different. One of the biggest struggles has been learning to accept myself for where I am in life today. A reader (thank you Cara Sue!) left a comment in another post about resolutions for 2017. She simply said she wanted to have "more self care." I love this because it encompasses more than just vanity; it's a whole lifestyle practice mentally, emotionally and physically. My priority now is my baby and my family. This used to sound like an excuse to me when other people said it, and it is to an extent, but it's simply the truth. Do you feel like you have time to workout? I don't want to be that person with excuses! My husband reminds me it's all about prioritizing the day, making smart choices.

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So, I am trying to look at this as an opportunity to adjust to a new lifestyle! I strap the baby on and go hiking or walking. I use my Joovy jogger to jog if I'm not too tired. I have grand plans to escape to yoga, but my membership doesn't get as much use as it used to. So, I go when I can. Some days I feel like I'm running around in circles not being as productive as I'd like. I have to let my preconceived expectations of the day go as I step over full laundry baskets and Huck's toys. I have a feeling some of you can relate?  

I try to stay well so I have energy by implementing super simple tips I learned from Dr. Oz! I have to say, my whole household has been sick, but I have not! I still take Proglucamune, the immunity supplement from Usana.  I promised myself I would drink two glasses of water with my supplements every morning. I'm proud I have made that a habit. My mom recently reminded me of a tip we both learned from Ronn Moss (from BOLD AND BEAUTIFUL) years ago... hot water with lemon first thing every morning to detoxify the body. I remember him drinking it during the day on set, too. He swears by this habit. Healthy (and free) habits are the best! 

In order to make progress for tomorrow, I have to do something different today. Doing the same thing every day and expecting different results is the definition of insanity. So, I am making a list of easy, healthy habits to incorporate change in my life as part of my new year's resolutions. I'm going to force myself to try them--- wanna do it with me? Leave a comment of things you'd like to try. Drink more water? Vitamins? Less soda? Less sugar. Take more steps (literally walk more)? I'm thinking I'd like to start one habit at a time and build from there. 

In the meantime, in honor of the Golden Globes tonight, I'm sharing my favorite tricks I've learned over the years from wardrobe, makeup and hair that have helped me during this transition period of body after baby.  Read them HERE!