Happy Monday and Martin Luther King Jr. Day for my stateside friends. It was so awesome to read all of your goals and comments from last week’s post, it gave me more ideas for my own goals for the year. Before we get into our new challenge, I want to share my progress from last week. In short, it went pretty well, I think I can do better this week. I had a really stiff/sore neck from our terrible pillows (finally got new ones after reviewing all of your suggestions on Instagram) and I am already feeling better. Exercise was making it worse in the beginning but switching our pillows was a game changer (I got the Coop Home Shredded Foam Pillow and took some of the stuffing out). Here’s what I did for my 30 minutes everyday.

Monday: Barre Class
Tuesday: Stretching/Yoga 30 Minutes
Wednesday: Stretching/Yoga 30 Minutes
Thursday: Barre Class
Friday: Dog Walk & Stretch
Saturday: Stretching & Morning Bike Ride
Sunday: Closet/Bedroom Organize Clean-out (does this count, haha, according to most of you who saw me ask this on Instagram, it does)

Confession, I didn’t really try anything new (also part of last week’s challenge), lame, I know, but I am signing up for a yoga class this week at a studio near me that I’ve never been to so better late than never. I plan on continuing my 30 minutes everyday (minimum) with one day for rest. Honestly most days I didn’t want to exercise but it felt really good afterwards and I was always so happy I did. I’m excited to hear how all of you did last week, make sure to let me know in the comments. As a reminder I will be doing a giveaway  at the end of every month and a big one at the end of the year. Your name will be entered for every Monday that you comment with your progress!

Jess Ann Kirby makes a resolution to cook more at home and incorporate healthy recipes into her diet

This Week’s Challenge: Try 3 new healthy recipes

One of my goals for this year is to cook at home more and eat out less. Since we bought our house we’ve gotten better, but we still need improvement. I think one of our biggest problems is that we don’t meal plan. So when one of us goes to the grocery store (we can’t grocery shop together because I take forever and it drives Craig nuts, and he goes too fast and it drives me nuts, haha!) we inevitably get things without thinking about how they’ll work in meals. Which leads to us ordering or going out, and wasting food. We got really into collecting cookbooks this fall (prompted by Good Clean Food, a cookbook I received as a gift over the summer). We both love to flip through and pick out recipes, the trick is to actually make them. Up until fairly recently, Craig did most of the cooking in our house. We just sort of fell into that routine and I, of course, didn’t mind. I just accepted that I “wasn’t a good cook.” The thing is the more you cook the better you get, and the easier it becomes. Honestly now I enjoy it, and dare I say, look forward to it, especially when I’m trying a new recipe. And that leads me to this week’s challenge. Try making at least 3 new healthy recipes this week. It can be anything from a full dinner to a smoothie.

Suggestions:

-Plan your grocery list ahead of time if you can. Find some recipes you want to try and write down what you need so you’ll stick to it.
-Make something you can eat all week. I love these vegan breakfast cookies (you can substitute chocolate for nuts, dried cherries, etc).
-Smoothies are one of my favorite things to have in the morning or as a snack during the day. This smoothie guide from Remi is so good to get you started.
-Make your own almond milk! Only 5 ingredients.

 

Jess Ann Kirby bakes vegan breakfast cookies for a healthy snack
I rounded up some of my favorite cookbooks below, and here’s a few other things I use regularly when cooking.

Instant Pot. Craig got this as a gift for Christmas and I LOVE it. I’ve only made a few things so far but I just got Martha Stewart’s Slow Cooker Cookbook so I plan on trying at least one recipe a week.

Ninja Blender. I really didn’t want to spend the money on a Vitamix so I read tons of reviews and this one had the best. I love this thing and use it everyday.

-All Clad cookware. I finally got nice cookware this fall and it makes cooking such a pleasant experience. It really does make a huge difference. The set I have is on sale right now too.

Some of my favorite cookbooks