WE DID IT!: My Journey to the Crown

Most of you know this was my third time competing at the state pageant, and boy has it been a journey. Life has consisted of sometimes doing two-a-days with workouts, being in the gym during the Super Bowl and Valentine’s Day when everyone else is celebrating, skipping on dessert at birthday celebrations and more. It has meant a lot of hard work and dedication to this path. It has meant getting knocked down and standing back up again and again. This year’s pageant was probably one of the most fun things I’ve done in my entire life. It began with Friday (April 28th) where we had a photoshoot with the dolphins at Mainland for Old City Life Magazine, styled by Nautilus at the Beach—which is a super cute store in St. Augustine. I kept thinking to myself, “When in the real world would I ever have that opportunity to have that same interaction and fun with the dolphins?!” After the shoot was over, we had dinner at 386. I had the vegetable tuscan ravioli and it was fantastic! Saturday, I had to be up bright and early to get my makeup done. The bonus of that was getting to see the sunrise over the beach. Being from Florida, that’s something that I will never get sick of… we have such beautiful coastal sunrises and sunsets. We had orientation and the women were just so great. I can’t even begin to tell you the caliber of the ladies, but most importantly they were all so extremely genuine and I definitely walked away with many great friends this year. After we...

A HEALTHY French Toast Bake

Woahhhh, I know what you’re thinking. “How can the word healthy possibly be in the same title with french toast?!” I get it. But this isn’t your normal recipe. I’ve made a bunch of changes to the original recipe that I found on the net to eliminate more of the yuck and substitute better alternatives (like the bread type). Things You Need: • A medium to large sized banana • 1/4 cup of almond milk, unsweetened • 1/4 cup of oats • 1/2 tsp of ground cinnamon • 1/2 tsp of vanilla extract • 1 slice of sprouted grain bread, cubed Directions: • Preheat oven to 375 degrees • Cut your banana in half (roughly). Mash half of the banana in a bowl and cut the other part into slices. • Take your mashed banana and add the almond milk, cinnamon and vanilla extract. Mix until it is fully combined. • Put your bread cubes into the mixture and use a fork to lightly press down so they absorb most of the liquid. • Add your oats and gently mix until everything looks even. (If your mix seems too dry, add a tiny splash of more almond milk.) • Transfer your mixture to your oven safe dish and then add your banana slices to the top. • Bake for 20 minutes. Your banana pieces will have a slight brown color to them. French Toast – Step 3, Part 1'French Toast – Step 3'French Toast – Step 4' Pretty easy, right?! I’ve found the bigger the banana that is used, the more flavorsome the bake is. One of these days...

Leading A Sustainable Healthy Lifestyle

If you’ve read my blogs from the past, or if you know me personally, you are aware that in 2006 my life changed when I was diagnosed with a heart condition called Wolff-Parkinson-White Syndrome. I had a successful ablation later that year. I had both physical and mental barriers to breakthrough after all of that. It was rough, I’m not going to lie. I faced everything from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to depression and even anxiety. Naturally, because I was trying to lead a physically fit lifestyle before with training to be a professional wrestler, I wanted to jump right back into my routine and get back on track with chasing my dreams. Sometimes life doesn’t work out like that, and that’s okay. When I reference having strength, I am talking about having your belief in yourself and what you want tested again and again every day and never giving up on it–I’m never referring to how much someone can lift. Going through all of this made me a stronger person; at points I felt like I had no other choice. As I tried to build my endurance on the treadmill, I felt my body pushing against me. At times, my heart would begin racing out of control and at other times it would give me deep burning sensations that stopped me in my tracks. I had to come to terms with the fact that at that current moment, my body did not want to be pushed… I needed to provide it with time to heal. From time to time, I would go to the gym and try getting...

Budget Friendly London Eats

I’m sure you’ve heard people say that food in England is not exactly award winning. However, I was not disappointed at the places that we randomly found while exploring the city. I want to share with you some budget friendly options for the next time you find yourself looking for a delicious gem. I apologize for not keeping all of my receipts, so there are a few places that I did not list the cost. There are some items that are also listed USD so there is not a mistake in using £ vs $. Just wanted to point that out 🙂 Cafe in the Crypt Trafalgar Square, London Mushroom Frittata with potatoes and salad – $10.97 Lyceum Tavern 354 Strand, London Macaroni & Cheese with toast, and Nachos & Cheese – £10.62 Harry Potter Studio Tour Studio Tour Dr, Leavesden Macaroni & Cheese with a Butterbeer * The only way to get into the cafe is through purchasing a ticket for the actual studio tour. Paul 61 Notting Hill Gate, London (Various Locations) About .60 pence per piece Itsu 100 Notting Hill Gate, London (Various Locations) Classic Chicken Noodles Pret A Manger Various Locations Cauli and Kale Macaroni Square Pie Ariel Way, Shepherd’s Bush, London (Westfield Shopping Plaza) Chicken & Mushroom Pie with broccoli and baked beans – £7.49 Biju Bubble Tea Ariel Way, Shepherd’s Bush, London (Westfield Shopping Plaza) Regular size Peach Tea with boba – £3.45 Sherlock Holmes Pub 10 Northumberland St, London Triple Chocolate Brownie (with mint chocolate ice cream) – £5.95 Bizzarro Restaurant 18-22 Craven Rd, London Fettuccine Alfredo and Minestrone Soup (this soup...

National Wear Red Day: February 3

Hey friends! It is that time of the year again! February 3, 2017 marks National Wear Red Day. The best part is, it does not cost you a dime to participate. The objective is to just wear red and support the women in your life. It’s scary to think how far heart health has come but that statistics are also showing that one in three women will be diagnosed with Heart Disease in her lifetime. It is STILL the number one killer of women and it is 80% preventable. I love you guys. I want the best for you. If we can prevent this by 80%, let’s do it! We have nothing to lose and everything to gain. I’ve spent so much time emailing and writing letters via snail mail to local and state government officials urging them to participate and support wearing red. We need to start somewhere and I want to thank YOU for helping me spread the word and being part of this health movement. We can all seriously make a...