Keep Calm and Relax On

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Hi guys! It’s Sydnee! As you may know we’re going with a bit of a theme this week with “keep calm” we were inspired to do this because life has many stresses and since it is my second week of school it is time that I brush up on ways I can de-stress. I figured that I would share some ways to de-stress and relax after work or school with you so we can all chill together!

Light a candle

Lighting a candle is not really a way to relax but it certainly helps you in relaxing especially when it is a cozy smell. The candle I am currently burning is called “Cinnamon Pecan Buns” it is a very fall smell that is super relaxing and is perfect after a hard day of school and/or work.

Read a book

Reading a book is probably one of my favorite ways to relax. Reading not only just a fun thing to do that expands your imagination, it is a great form of stress relief that actually works faster than other stress relief methods such as drinking hot tea and listening to music. A study at the University of Sussex in 2009 stated that reading reduces stress by 68%. Reading also lowers your heart rate and calms muscle tension. Any kind of genre will do but for a great escape, fiction is the way to go. Here are the Goodreads links to the books in the picture:

Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum

Love and Gelato by Jenna Evans Welch

Watch a movie or TV show

This is probably the most effortless form of stress relief because you literally choose a film or show and lay down, that honestly sounds amazing right now. Some movies that are great for the endings of long days are “You’ve Got Mail”, “Sleepless in Seattle”, “Beauty and the Beast”, and “13 going on 30”. Some TV shows I like to watch after a long day are “Gilmore Girls”, “Brooklyn 99”, “Parks and Rec”, and “The Great British Baking Show”. None of the ones I listed are particularly stressful, after a hectic day the best shows are ones that end happily.

Exercise

I know exercising does not seem very relaxing but exercising releases endorphins and endorphins make you happy! (Legally Blonde reference what a surprise) Maybe don’t go for a 3 mile sprint but a light jog or a walk is sure to do you some good especially if it is outside, nature is calming too. Other forms of light exercise would be yoga or a low intensity plyometric workout. Yoga is probably the best since it is a proven stress reliever and you’ll feel so much better after stretching out all of the tension filled muscles.

Start a Journal

I don’t have much experience journaling but I have seen many things about it on Pinterest and how good it is for you. There are all kinds of journaling, you can talk about your day like the olden days or you can create a specific journal like one for gratitude or a happy tracker. Maybe even a vent journal so you can put all of your negative thoughts on paper instead of keeping them in your head. I recommend looking up prompts on Pinterest if you’re interested! Also a cute journal is sure to keep you coming back if you plan on doing it consistently!

Eat a Snack

This snack can be healthy or indulgent or both. If you want to stick to a healthier snack go for some fruit with yogurt or maybe a small bowl of cereal. If you’re feeling a little indulgent I’d say go for a small bowl of ice cream, a slice of cake, a donut, or anything you feel like really but don’t go too overboard! Small indulgences are good for you so don’t be afraid to break out a little bit of your sweet tooth if you think it’ll help you relax.

Listen to Music

It’s hard for me to just sit and listen to music unless I’m in the car but listening to some calming music is a great way to de-stress. Some artists I recommend are Vance Joy, The Lumineers, Mumford and Sons, Florence and The Machine, Ed Sheeran, Elton John, and Lana Del Rey.

Take a Shower

Not only is this essential to everyday personal hygiene but showers can be quite relaxing. Warm water and complete alone time should always be cherished. Also a great way to make it more relaxing is to imagine everything that happened that day being rinsed off. It speeds up the de-stressing process and overall just makes you feel better.

Wear Comfy Clothes

When you have a chance to wear sweatpants and over-sized T-shirts please take it. Comfy clothes are the key to relieving stress. I like a good pair of athletic shorts and an old or just soft T-shirt. For PJ’s after a shower; make sure that they are your comfiest PJ’s because you deserve it.

Turn your phone off

Usually I would never suggest this because as a teenager I am glued to my phone but lately it has done me loads of good to just turn it off. I like social media and being online but sometimes it’s kind of overwhelming so when I turn my phone off I feel like there’s a weight off of my shoulders, like I can be invisible for a few hours and do things I enjoy that aren’t online like reading or going for a run outside.

 

That pretty much concludes my ways of de-stressing after school but there are loads more recommendations on Pinterest and such so check those out too. You can use these methods anytime, after or before school and/or work and lazy days. Remember that relieving stress is vital to you living your best life so use these methods and any other ones you find to give yourself the care you need.

Thank you for reading and remember…

Keep Calm and Relax On!

4th Of July Goodies!

Happy 4th of July to all of our American Readers!

We decided that since today is a holiday that we would share with you some of our favorite patriotic recipes. These are so simple and easy that you can put them together before your afternoon BBQ.  We will be celebrating our Fourth of July in the pool and out by the BBQ with family and friends!

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For the first recipe we have: Patriotic Popcorn

This popcorn is so easy to make and throw into individual bags for a firework viewing party or toss it in a bowl for everyone at your BBQ to enjoy.

As a side note, I would say that you can easily add some M&M’s to the mix as well as some pretzels. I keep mine simple because I don’t want to add a ton of calories.

Let’s Get Popping!

What You Will Need:

*Popcorn

*Melting Chocolate

*Sprinkles

*Cookie Sheet

*Parchment Paper

First off we are going to lay pop our popcorn. You can easily use a bag of popcorn from the microwave, I happen to have a machine so I use the oil and kernels method.

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Next, we lay out a cookie sheet and cover that with parchment paper.

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After the parchment paper has been laid out, we spread the popcorn out evenly.

Next, we would melt the red and blue chocolate pieces in the microwave in separate bowls. I warm mine up for 30 seconds at a time till it comes out smooth.

Once the candy pieces are melted, You will take the spoon and drizzle the different chocolates evenly around the popcorn. Once you have drizzled both colors, add the sprinkles!

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After the popcorn has been coated in chocolate and sprinkles, you can either let it sit on the counter for a few minutes until the chocolate hardens or you can speed up the process by popping it in the fridge for a few minutes.

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After you remove it from the fridge, break it apart and enjoy!

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The second recipe is : 4th of July Cupcakes

Cierra here, to continue with sharing our favorite 4th of July treats, I’ll be sharing mini vanilla cupcakes with patriotic frosting. Patriotic frosting meaning red, white & blue buttercream frosting with festive sprinkles. So here we go…

Vanilla Cupcakes:

  •  2 Cups All-Purpose Flour
  • 1 1/2 Cups Sugar
  • 3 tsp Baking Powder
  • 1 tsp Salt
  • 1 Cup Milk
  • 1/2 Cup Shortening
  • 2 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 4 Egg Whites

Heat oven to 350 Degrees F. Line mini muffin tins with paper liners; set aside. In large bowl, combine flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, milk and shortening at low speed until moistened; beat 2 minutes at medium speed. Add vanilla and egg whites; continue beating an additional 2 minutes. Divide equally among mini cupcake liners.

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Bake at 350 Degrees F. for 20 to 25 minutes or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 10 minutes; remove from pans. Set aside.

Vanilla Buttercream Frosting:

– 2/3 Cup Butter, Softened

  •  4 Cups Powdered Sugar
  • 3 to 5 Tbsp Milk
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract

In large bowl, cream butter until light and fluffy. Gradually add powdered sugar, beating well after each addition. Add vanilla and milk a tablespoon at a time; beat to desired piping consistency.

Now divide the frosting evenly among 3 bowls. Add red food coloring to one and blue food coloring to another and leave the white frosting alone. Make the colors as light or as dark as you like. Put frostings in separate piping bags, no couplers or tips just cut off tips and place all 3 frosting in one bag that is fitted with a coupler and decorating tip of your choice.

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Then pipe frosting onto cupcakes and sprinkle with 4th of July sprinkles.

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Have fun and enjoy!

And the last recipe is:  Refreshing Red and Blue lemonade Frosty’s

Hey guys! It’s Sydnee here! Since we’re sharing our favorite 4th of July treats, I decided that since my favorites are pretty similar to Lindsey and Cierra that I would try something new! For my 4th of July treat I decided to do red and blue lemonade frosty’s! Below are all of the steps and ingredients! Have fun!

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To start us off here is a list of things you need:

  • Water
  • Lemonade Mix
  • Spoons
  • Measuring Cup
  • Vanilla Ice Cream
  • Blender
  • Lemons
  • Knife
  • Red and Blue food coloring
  • Cups
  • Cute Straws (optional but necessary in this household)

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Step 1: Make your lemonade

I used two cups of water and three scoops of lemonade mix it tasted really strong at first but I figured since we’re mixing it with ice cream that we don’t want it to lose that lemony flavor. So for this step you can really just choose how much water and scoops you want of mix, this one is all about perforations do taste it and make sure it’s too your liking before moving on!

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Step 2: Scoop your ice cream into your blender

For every cup of lemonade scoop three spoonfuls of ice cream. Here I did six scoops of ice cream for my two cups of lemonade. After that pour your lemonade into the blender and proceed to blend it until it’s all mixed and to a consistency you like. If you want it thicker you can add more ice cream. I stuck with 3 per cup and it was a little liquidy but it still tastes amazing.

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Step 3: Pour into cups and add food coloring

I just added a few drops of each color to each cup and mixed it with a straw. Here you can choose what shade of red and blue you want. (Not pictured: me trying to mix the red and blue and it turned purple so I drank it) If you have leftover you can keep it it’s natural color and have red, white, and blue or if your frosty lemonade is thicker you can probably layer it in a cup without failing like me.

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Step 4: Cut up a lemon and attach it to the side for aesthetic then enjoy!

I was a little skeptical about lemonade mixed with ice cream but I actually really enjoyed it! It was creamy and tart all at once which definitely satisfied my taste buds! These lemonade frosty’s are perfect for a hot summer’s day and are the prime beverage to serve at any patriotic holiday party! I will definitely be enjoying one on this fine holiday! Thank you so much for reading! Have a happy 4th of July/ Independence Day everyone and enjoy your red and blue lemonade frosty!

**What is your favorite 4th of July treat?

We hope you have a wonderful and safe Fourth of July! Talk to you soon!