Simple City Life

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Keep The Lunchbox Rockin. #Naturebox

We have all survived the back to school rush. By now you have fallen into a lovely groove, or perhaps a slightly more organized chaos then seven weeks ago. Waking up is easier, the kids know what to expect most mornings and the homework is getting completed nightly, Congrats!! Everyday gets a little easier over in this house, so I am hoping that you are seeing the same rhythm in your house. Although, having a spouse traveling over seas has thrown things a little off, but that may just be my jealously talking. 

One thing is for certain, no matter what those lunches and after school snacks must keep coming. I absolutely love packing my children's lunches. I know, I know. I'm a little crazy or just controlling. I am a little obsessive about knowing what my children are eating. I also know that they are hungry after a hard morning learning. So, I say use that to your benefit. Stuff that lunch chalk full of crazy healthy foods, when that is their only option, they kinda have to eat it. We eat very healthy at home too, but it is amazing what I can get my kids to eat while they are at school. They also seem to have a love for bringing unique foods to tell their classmates about. Apparently, their friends love to learn about their lunches. Whatever it takes. 

As much as I love the healthy foods they are eating and that they are trying new things, it does get exhausting. Some mornings, my energy is zapped and I do not want to spend a lot of time of their lunches. These are the mornings that I let NatureBox take over. I stock pile out monthly box and wait for those days when I really need it. I know that even though I'm worn out and out of energy, they will still have unique and healthy lunches with very little effort on my behalf. Take a look at these delicious snacks: 
Who wouldn't love to open a lunch box full of these goodies! There is always something for everyone. You can customize your box or let them surprise you. No matter what, all the snacks get eaten and the kids are always full of surprises. Who knew that my 10 year old would love Sriratcha Rice Crackers so much? They are quiet spicy after all. Of course these is never enough Big Island Pineapple as that is everyone's favorite! If you are starting to get a little drained over the school lunch packing, check out NatureBox and let them add some creative flare back into those lunch pals.

Without a doubt, there is something for everyone. With numerous options in multiple dietary needs, you are sure to be snacking happy very soon. We are able to choose from over 70 gluten free varieties and more than 65 non-gmo snacks there is always a variety in our shipments. If you are vegan, soy free, dairy free or nut free- you have options!

Let me know if you decide to give NatureBox a try. Already subscribe, what is your favorite snack?

Happy Snacking!
Courtney

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

so #shifthapened.

I am not a blogger who spends my time traveling to conferences. For the most obvious reason, they are expensive. Flights, hotels, transportation, meals, wardrobe...it adds up fast! I also tend to stay away since it is really hard to be in a place where the hairs on the back of your neck are standing up due to the anxiety you are having. Anxiety over the sponsors who missions is completely opposite of yours, products that scare you and a competition to be the most fashionable blogger ever. For me it is like throwing a baseball player in the middle of a ballet class. I just don't feel like I fit in. When ShiftCon was announced, I knew that this was my chance, my kind of place, my people. People who also have anxiety in the grocery store and really could care less as to where you purchased you outfit. I had to go, without a shadow of doubt, I needed to be there. I worked my way there and couldn't be happier. 

If you are a reader if  Simple City Life, then you most likely would love Shift Con as well and really should join me next year. Here is why:

You will meet amazing people. 

It's impossible not too. The fellow bloggers are wonderful, the sponsors area blast to hang out with and the speakers are passionate and supportive of you and your efforts. Not only will you meet these fine people you have the chance to meet and make new friends like I did. My roommates were so great! Lori and Nicole were great to meet, spend my days with and walk away with new friendships. I am so thankful that I was able to meet these ladies and journey together as we watch this Shift Happen. You will be able to meet the amazing panel of speakers like Gary Hirshberg, Robyn O'Brein, Vani Hari, and so many more. 

You will eat amazing organic, non-GMOfoods.

Leah was extraordinary. She it this conference out of the park. Every provided meal was above and beyond all expectations. Each ingredient was carefully picked out and held to the highest standard. It was unbelievable and comforting to know that I was not sacrificing my food standards while away from home. It was a dream. Even down to the yummy and fancy cocktails. We are talking organic alcohol and specialty Kombutcha Cocktails. 


 You will have opportunities to do yoga with Travis Eliot. 

Yes. I'm serious. Waking up at 6am, not so great. Doing a great workout with Travis, the Ultimate Yogi, worth it. His class was wonderful! I am so glad I woke up and made myself head down. He is a great instructor, I really want to get his workouts now. 

 You will be able to squeeze in time to see the Ocean! 

This small trip would not have happened if it wasn;t for my wonderful roomate Lori. Since she was kinda local and drove to the conference, I was able to hitch a ride with Lori and Lisa from Naturepedic. We loved every moment on that beach. My heart longs to live out west again. 




You will meet some of the BEST brands on the market for all your families needs. 

It's one thing to follow these great brands on social media, but it is so much better to meet them face to face! Although we have been ambassadors for Molly's Suds for just about a year, I have had meet Monica. It was wonderful and she is so sweet. I am so glad that I was able to spend time with her in real life. Of course, I LOVED hanging out with my favorite Stonyfield ladies, Kristina and Melanie. hey are a absolute blast and always keep me laughing. Meeting Shari from Nordic Naturals was another wonderful moment for me. We have worked together several time over the years. They have some wonderful new products coming out. Chatting with Heidi while resting on the luxurious Naturepedic mattresses was a huge highlight. Such a great line of organic mattresses starting from birth right through adulthood. Every interaction was wonderful! 

You will learn so much! 

From how to be a better advocate, to how to run your blog better, you will be amazed at how much information you will have access too. My favorite sessions were The future of GMO labeling, Google+, and the legals of blogging. If you are bummed you missed out, fear not- you can buy the entire recorded conference here

You just might win big! 

I'm still in shock of my HUGE win! I was in disbelief when Leah announced my name as the winner of the Year Supply Of Breakfast, sponsored by Applegate, Natures Path, Rudy's Organic Bakery and Organic Valley. It was a unbelievable win and I am so thankful to these companies.  This is huge for our budget this coming year. 

Bottom line, this is the one conference I will attend this year and most likely the only one next year too. Being able to walk inspired, supported, passionate and confident is a incredible feeling. Blogging can be defeating if you are not surrounded by a fully supportive tribe. I found that at Shift Con and I couldn't  happier! 

Until next year, 
Courtney

**apologies for some of the blurry phone pictures! 

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Earth Footwear Review #earthfootwear

The Midwest prides itself on our gorgeous fall weather. Even with the cool temps, even this summer lover is enjoying the beauty that is unfolding outside my windows. The brilliant colors are extremely bright this year, making the last smile of the year one to remember. I will admit that even I adore the wardrobe that fall brings. Being a die hard denim wearer, I am always looking for some bits and pieces to add to my very plain wardrobe. 
The biggest challenge that I face with adding accessories is without a doubt footwear. I have flat, extremely wide feet, they may even resemble hobbit feet. As much as I love shopping for shoes, I typically leave the store feeling down about my rather unattractive feet, head home and slip back into my cowboy boots. I do shop online occasionally for shoes that are know to have a wider fit. A while back I found Earth Footwear by following Leah (aka @bookieboo). I loved the styles and the price was spot on for what I would expect to pay for a well made leather shoe. Obviously, I jumped at the chance to review this line. I held my breath, and in all honesty expected to be dissapointed. 
The disappointment I was expecting was due to hobbit feet, not the quality. When my box arrived, I unwrapped them and literally gasped at how beautiful they were. I was fearful to even put them on. I however got over that fear rather fast and immediately slipped on my new shoes. I must admit, they were a tad tight. I decided to wear them around the house and see if they would loosen up. Slowly, they started to form to my feet and the tightness did do away. I kept wearing them around the house with socks in order to fully break them in. After a week of doing this, I took them out and about. I was really surprised that I was able to keep them on for so long with out pain. I did get a few small blisters, but they didn't last long. For the first time in years, I own a extremely adorable, feminine shoe that fits. They are 100% broken in, and traveled with me to ShiftCon. I was able to walk through the airport, all around the conference and home again with out pain or discomfort.  

Earth® footwear is doing women's feet right by constructing their footwear with a padded heel area to displace shock , adding a reinforced arch support to stabilize foot and placing multi-density latex cushioning layer for extra support. The inside of the shoe is literally made super soft pillows to cushion and protect your feet. I could not be happier with these shoes and am already planning out my next purchase. When you find a brand that fit, stick to it right?!

If you are interested in purchasing a pair for yourself, which I highly suggest, you can shop directly at Earth® Brands. Sign up for the newsletter and never miss a sale or preview of new styles.

If you love my shoes, The Maize,  check them out here in three different colors. These retail for 109.99. The Maize design is inspired by vintage men's loafers and reimagined in a sophisticated, feminine silhouette, every detail evokes a feeling of confidence.
These shoes feature:
  • Premium burnished leather upper with glove-soft leather lining
  • Exclusive comfort footbed cushions your foot from heel to toe
  • Cushioned arch support for all-day comfort

Join the Earth® Footwear Community on all their social sites: 

Thanks for reading, have a wonderful week,
Courtney