Indoor Fun with Movies, Pillow Forts and Popcorn!!


During the cold and snowy winter months our family tends to hibernate in our house – we only venture out for required events like school and work. So we have to get creative to keep ourselves from being overcome with boredom. One of our favorite things to do is have movie nights – and my son loves to build pillow forts and get comfy to watch.

Of course movie night also means snack time – and we always make sure to have plenty of PopSecret Popcorn on hand! It’s one snack that my whole family can agree on, and we  can make our own. I love to sprinkle ranch seasoning on mine, and the kids will sometimes add chocolate chips or melt caramel on top of theirs.  Sometimes well have a popcorn flavor sampling – we use salsa bowls and we all create a flavor, and then everyone tries it! We’ve came up with some unique tasty flavors (popcorn and bacon bits are yum) and some that were not so great (butter popcorn with cinnamon – yeah, not so much). Anyway you have it, it’s a favorite snack while we have family movie night!

popcorn3Now I’m not much of a fort maker – but he seems pretty happy with the blankets and pillow set-up over the chairs in the living room. He even gets his sisters to join him every once in awhile.

popcorn1We aren’t the only ones that think popcorn and pillow forts go together – PopSecret is encouraging everyone to build their own pillow fort -and share the photo on their Facebook page to be entered to win some mystery prizes (while supplies last). 

While you’re there make sure to download a and print the $1 off coupon for your favorite PopSecret Popcorn! 
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Avoiding the Health Consequences of Hearing Loss

Once thought to be an inconvenient but natural part of aging, hearing loss is now known as a risk factor for other troubling health issues like dementia and depression. With these and other health problems at stake, treating hearing loss can make a difference. And since about 36 million Americans of all ages face some level of hearing loss, those treatments like hearing aids aren’t just for the elderly anymore.

The Connection Between Hearing Loss and Health
Those with hearing loss also lose brain tissue, and their concentration and memory abilities dwindle, according to a 2014 Johns Hopkins University study. This most-recent research is added to a growing list of studies that points to a connection between hearing loss and a variety of health problems, including increased falls, escalating hospitalizations and mental health issues. For instance, researchers in 2011 found that those with hearing loss suffered nearly twice the incidence of depression than those with normal hearing.

Steps to Avoiding Hearing Loss Consequences
Preventing hearing loss altogether is always a good goal, and there are several steps you can take today to reduce your chance of suffering damage. If you work in an area exposed to continuous or loud noises like those found in a factory, wear hearing protection. Even those who work with lawn mowers or leaf blowers, ride motorcycles or use machinery frequently should be mindful to wear earplugs or ear muffs. Keep music and television sound to a moderate level. Quit smoking and, if possible, avoid medications that can cause hearing damage.

If you suspect that your hearing is reduced, have your hearing tested. The likelihood of hearing loss increases as you age, especially over the age of 65. And even though the risks are higher for seniors, teenagers and young adults are at risk too. Nearly 20 percent of all 12-to-19-year-olds suffer hearing loss, according to a 2010 Brigham and Women’s Hospital study.

If your test shows hearing loss, take action. Although researchers aren’t quite sure whether mental and physical decline occurs before or after hearing loss begins, they are quick to suggest early intervention. Researchers and health advocates recommend using hearing aids or other assistive devices for mild and moderate hearing loss.

New Generation Hearing Solutions
Luckily, today’s hearing aids offer plenty of options, from small devices inserted in the ear canal to discreet aids that tuck behind the ear. The innovations continue to come from companies like Miracle-Ear, Inc. that blend convenience of use with digital technology. Audiologists and hearing aid technicians can customize things like noise reduction, sound processing and comfort using the hearing aid’s software, leaving the device itself untouched. And there are even hearing aids that connect to smart phones and other Bluetooth-enabled mobile devices to broadcast phone calls, audio GPS driving directions and music directly to the hearing aid.

Hearing loss doesn’t have to make you feel disconnected from life or the people around you, and you may even be able to prevent other health problems with their use. As researchers continue to explore whether hearing aids and other interventions can prevent associated dementia, depression and other health consequences, the devices are already well-known to help improve your quality of life.

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Nutella Breakfast Rolls

Saturday is my grocery shopping day, which usually means by Saturday morning our options for meals are a bit scarce. As I was searching the frig and pantry for ideas for breakfast, I remembered seeing something on Facebook about an alternative cinnamon roll made with Nutella.

So since we always have Nutella on hand, and I usually try to keep crescent rolls in my frig, I decided to give it a try. The ingredients are simple just Nutella and crescent rolls, though I’m sure you could use biscuits or other type of bread depending on what you have.

Preheat the oven to 400, just like you would the crescent rolls.

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First step is to gently roll out the crescent rolls to make a flat surface. The pre-cut areas make it a little difficult, so be careful.

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Next your going to spread the Nutella evenly across the dough, I would suggest a very thin layer, because Nutella is soo sweet. Some of my rolls were a bit too much and others were just right. So evenly spreading the Nutella is important.
Nutella_rolls_step_3Next is rolling the dough up so you can cut them into the rolls. Again, the pre-cuts make it a bit difficult, but if I can do it I know you can!
Nutella_rolls_step_4The cutting is one of the harder parts, I know a lot of people will use floss or string to cut, but I just used a sharp knife. They were a bit smushed but I just used the knife to try to spread them apart a bit so they’d cook evenly.

Bake for 8-10 minutes, checking at 8 to make sure they aren’t over done. They cook pretty quickly, but the middle can be a bit doughy if you don’t leave them in long enough.

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I am sure you can get creative, I was thinking adding cream cheese, maybe  some strawberries (I love Nutella & strawberry toast, so I’m sure that would be delicious). Maybe even marshmallow fluff. This would also make a great sweet dessert!

 

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Delicious Decadent Brownies Under 80 Calories

As much as I try to stay away from the sweets and high calorie snacks, there are just time when girl needs her chocolate. It’s easy to ruin a good day with one mouth stuffed full of cookies, cakes or brownies. Why work hard all day eating salads and grilled fish and chicken, and then cave at 10 at night eating a thousand calories because you are craving some sweet dessert??
When I heard about Special K perfectly-portioned 80-calorie brownies I was a bit skeptical. I’ve tried the super fiber-rich, fake chocolate wanna-be snacks before and it never quenched my craving for the sweet rich chocolate taste. But I decided to give it a try, and got a box of each of the flavors: divine fudge and heavenly caramel.

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I was impressed that the Special K Brownies are made with real cocoa, chocolate or caramel chips, and topped with a delicious drizzle of chocolate fudge.

I have to admit I love both flavors,but I have a tendency to favor the heavenly caramel. I love the blending of chocolate and caramel together so this is a perfect sweet dessert for me! In fact, I’ve brought one to eat at work after lunch everyday this week!

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I will admit – they are slightly small. If you are looking for a hefty dessert, plan on eating 2 with a glass of milk. But if you need something to curb that sweet tooth one of these do the trick. My kids love them too, and my oldest daughter asked me to get her some to take in her school lunch as well – she has been resisting the temptation of the vending machine, so I am more than happy to give her a healthier, lower calorie alternative.

Don’t just take my word for it – Special K Brownies are available this month at retailers across the country!

This post is sponsored by FitFluential on behalf of Special K.

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Boost Your Weight Loss Results with Fuelslim

On occasion you need an extra boost to help you with your weight loss goals – to jump start your body and get you results in a hurry. Instead of trying dangerous diets or pills, you can try a healthy alternative to help you burn that extra fat. I am happy to tell you – I have found something that works!
I was given the chance to try FUELSLIM Fit Drink which is an all-natural way to lose weight and help keep it off. It contains 13 all-natural fat burning ingredients including garcinia cabogia, forskolin, CLA, L-Carnitine, Rasberry Ketone, Mucuna Pruriens,  and no stimulants. It’s also sugar-free, gluten-free and has no chemical preservatives.
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One of my favorite things about FuelSlim is not only the great tasting drinks that help boost my mood, suppresses my appetite, blocks fat absorption, builds lean muscle, breaks down existing fat, and provides key vitamins, but that it gives me a unique diet plan based on my bodies needs. You test your fat burning ability with a fuelstrip to determine where you need to focus to burn the most fat – have you ever had a friend who swore  by a diet and workout, and it didn’t do a thing for you?? It could be because you burn fat differently. By finding have efficient your body burns fat, you can adapt your meals and work outs to be the most effective.

They also recommend that while taking FUELSLIM that you follow their 30 day diet; I have to admit this is key to loosing weight, and keeping it off. I love that they give my options because I am horrid at picking out food and keeping it healthy and within my calorie goals. You can actually read all about the details about the diet here.

OK to get started you have lots of different options for products. I started off with Slim Forever which gave me 2 containers of Fuelslim, a shaker, and the fuelstrips. (see pic below).
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I have to admit – I like the strawberry with lots of ice the best. But the orange is pretty flavorful too. I think the hardest habit to beat was grabbing something to eat or snack on because when you sit at a desk all day that’s one thing you have to look forward to ya know?  So I started going to get crushed ice to put my  FUELSLIM formula in, and chewing on ice helped with that bad habit. Another hard thing was detoxing from  sugar – I am a sugar addict, and I would say probably for the first 15 days I wasn’t the most pleasant to be around because I feening for something sweet.

After about 3 weeks I was feeling better, had more energy and was down over 15 pounds! I have another week left of my FUELSLIM and I can definitely say I will be ordering some more soon. I have about 50 more pounds to lose and I declare that 2015 is my year – with the help of Fuelslim!

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