Available Balance
Morning Detox Turmeric Healthy Drink
March 30, 2017
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When you wake up, what do you first drink? There are so many options on what many would drink. Typically here in America, many would opt for coffee. Or, milk, orange juice, juice, water. However, in reality – we should make ourselves a healthy drink but most of us are in a rush in the mornings. This detox water based drink is very healthy for you and effortless featuring key ingredients of turmeric, chia seeds and raw honey.

What ingredients will you need?

  • Chia Seeds – half teaspoon
  • Raw & Unfiltered Honey – one teaspoon
  • Fresh Turmeric – about four thinly sliced pieces, more or less depending on your preference
  • Warm hot water – enough to fill your glass cup

How to prepare this drink?

  1. Heat your warm water in a kettle over the stove or, heat your water with an electric kettle (however you heat your water up)
  2. Get a nice tall glass cup and scoop in half teaspoon of chia seeds. Once the warm water is hot and boiled – poor the hot water into the glass cup of chia seeds then stir. Stir until the chia seeds expand in size to me they look like tiny eyeballs. Back when I first tried chia seeds, it creeped me out because they literally reminded me of eyeballs.
  3. Then, you want to stir in one teaspoon of raw and unfiltered honey (the most pure and organic is the best for you since the sugars are natural – to know if your honey is real, authentic honey bee never hardens). Cut a few slices of fresh turmeric to add into your glass. Then stir everything in until the honey dissolves.
  4. Ready to drink and it will taste refreshing.

Plus by incorporating turmeric to your morning routine you are getting the health benefits of turmeric like:

  • Natural anti inflammatory compound
  • Increases antioxidants
  • Helps prevent cancers
  • Lower your risk of brain disease
  • Lower your risk of heart disease
  • And much more!
Review: Trader Joe’s Toasted Coconut Pancake Mix
March 30, 2017
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This is one of my favorite pancake mixes from Trader Joe’s. It is the “toasted coconut” with actual toasted coconut flakes in the dry mixture. For a 19 oz box, the cost is around $3.50, but no more than $4 bucks. This is a very self explanatory mix, all you need to do is just add water like what the package says, but you can opt for milk instead if you prefer. I have tried both methods – adding water and milk into the dry mixture but I found out when I add milk, the consistency of the batter feels more heavy. I prefer my pancakes to be fluffy, soft and thin. I prefer just adding water but the decision is ultimately yours! I personally do not carefully follow the instructions because when I did, the batter was also thick. Instead, for the batter – I use an even amount of flour to water ratio and make my pancakes thin. I use one cup of the flour mixture and one cup of water. However, before making the pancakes, I will soak some chia seeds in the water for about five minutes and by adding some chia seeds in my pancakes – it is a little bit healthier. Plus, you cannot even taste the chia seeds so why not! The pancake batter is very easy to stir, and cooks fast on the griddle. When the pancakes bubbles, you flip the pancakes. Afterwards, we cook our eggs on the griddle and enjoy with maple syrup on top of the pancakes!

Overall, this is a mix, we would definitely repurchase in the future and recommend. It looks like you get a handful of uses for a decent price. The hint of coconut is a nice scent, but you do not taste the coconut as much though.

Are you a fan of pancakes? Or do you prefer waffles? I am hoping to purchase a waffle maker in the future.

 

Review: Chocolate Chip Pancake & Waffle Mix by Birch Benders
March 29, 2017
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Since we purchased a griddle, it is much easier to make pancakes along with eggs and occasionally bacon for breakfast. While grocery shopping there are so many selections for pancake mixes and the decision was quite overwhelming. My fiancé and I purchased a couple of varieties one being this Organic Chocolate Chip just add water Pancake & Waffle Mix by Birch Benders. This 16 oz bag is originally $5, but it was on sale for $4.

Our thoughts? The packaging is cute and resealable ziploc. The mix is very easy and self explanatory to make. You just literally add water and mix, however the instructions of flour to water is not precise. Even following the directions, the batter was rather thick. The first time we attempted to make these pancakes, we used water per the instructions and did not like the texture. Not to mention the chocolate chips are hard to stir in well. The second time around in lieu of water, we used organic milk and added chia seeds. We used much more liquid than recommended and the batter was more watery which was necessary. The pancakes are easy to cook on the griddle. Lightly oiled the griddle and cooked until bubbles formed on the pancakes and flipped. However, the chocolate chips are rather sweet, and I love sweet but this was just too sweet for me! You could literally eat the pancakes by itself since its so sweet but we also used some organic maple syrup. Plus for the price, one bag only lasted us two uses which is not a good value for the price.

Overall opinion: The pancakes are easily overwhelming in flavor. I think this would be better for a waffle version, but we need to buy a waffle maker. We would not purchase this in the future – it is just too sweet! And the consistency of the batter is not easy to work with. There were other flavors we would try, just not chocolate chip, perhaps blueberry pancakes next time!

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My name was not called… for at an awards ceremony!
March 27, 2017
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Screen Shot 2017-03-26 at 8.19.16 PMOne of my most embarrassing moments happened when I was in middle school. At that time, I was in the sixth or seven grade. I received a letter from my school, inviting my parents or guardian/adult and I to an awards event the following week, and that I would be receiving an award. What kind of award? That would be a surprise.

The award ceremony happened in the afternoon right before school ended and since my parents’ both worked and could not attend – my sister did. Everyone who was receiving an award was dismissed from last period class and to report to the auditorium. We all lined up outside the auditorium and in no particular order walked in and took a seat anywhere we wanted on stage. From the stage to the audience, I looked around and spotted my sister by herself and waved. We waved at each other and then the ceremony begun.

The ceremony started with the principal and vice principal welcoming everyone to the awards ceremony. Thanking everyone for taking the time to come, how deserving each individual is to receive an award or multiple awards and then the pledge of alliance.

Afterwards, it was time to distribute the “paper” awards. The principal and other staff were calling each name individually for each type of award which lasted literally a hour. The awards were for academics for a particular subject, high ranked reading, essentially the paper awards were essentially related to a particular subject. While everyone had at least a paper award, I sat there with nothing.

At that point, I was red like a tomato. I kept eyeing my sister and we were clueless. Then, the principal wrapped up the speech and thanked everyone for coming. I still had nothing at that point. Then another staff, ran up and said we forgot to hang out the plaques! And my name was called. I had perfect citizenship award and did not get a paper award, but a wooden plaque award! Embarrassing moment, if I did not get any award but I did just a tad late.

Lately I Experienced Bad Take Out Service
March 27, 2017
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Screen Shot 2017-03-26 at 7.36.34 PMLately, I been encountering lack of service in well known take out and restaurant spots. I am not quite sure if the employees are to blamed for as pure laziness or if management is lacking over the quality control. I think it is a combination of both and other factors also.

Places I have lacked service:

  1. Pizza Take Out – Occasionally, my fiancé and I would order pizza for take out. When you order take out: for your pizza you could usually ask for parmesan cheese, crushed red peppers, plates, and napkins or all the above at no additional cost. Well, normally I would pay and tip the cashier then be asked if I want anything. I asked for a couple of plates and napkins only because I do not need parmesan cheese or crushed red peppers – we actually do not eat them. I was told they do not have any more plates but he could give me napkins. How could you possibly not have any more plates? He showed me the bag that was empty, but I am sure there are more in the back somewhere. I would understand if the store was busy but at the time I went to go pick up the pizza, no one was on line and no calls were being taken. If I had known, I would not tip just for the sake of tipping!
  2. Chinese Take Out – In order to eat your food no matter dining in or taking out – you need utensils right? Well, upon leaving with my food that I just ordered for take out, I went to grab a fork and they did not have. Not even one left, so I asked for a fork. They apologized and said they do not have any forks. So, how will people eat the food? Given they do have chopsticks however the store just opened and not everyone wants to use a wooden chopstick.
  3. American Restaurant – After grocery shopping, I wanted a quick lunch, but not a full entree, so I ordered a kids meal. Upon arrival – I had a long wait and to go to my car and realize they were missing a side dish of the kids meal. Had I forgot the side dish, that is already half of the kids meal.

Who is there to blame for?

Complimentary Beauty Samples and Tips
March 26, 2017
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If you are like me and are completely clueless when it comes to beauty whether it may be skin care, make up, anything beauty related then continue reading. Or, if you want to improve your beauty routine or try new products without having to shell out the funds just to find out you do not like a particular product or the product does not work out for you (for example: leaves you with acne, break outs, redness).

If that applies to you then hopefully a beauty store like Sephora is in your town! If so, Sephora will be your best friend!  They have trained beauty employees who will be happy to help provide recommendations and tips for your face, skin type and so forth! Not to mention, they will shower you with complimentary samples to bring home and try out if you request. The samples are free and no purchase required, you can request up to three per visit. Your sample will come in a mini plastic container with a print out of the product, product description, price, review and instructions just encase the product works out for you and you would like to purchase that product in the future. These samples are not meant for you to see any results immediately, but so you have an idea of how the product would work on your face and skin type. For instances – I personally have acne prone and combination oily skin in addition to sensitive skin so for some products like exfoliating beads in cleansers, some could be harsh on my skin and make me irritated and have redness. By being able to test a small sample when I get home before I go to bed and try out say the exfoliating, I would know if the product worked out for me or not. If it does work out, great – I found a product I could purchase. If the product does not work out, I can go back and eventually find a product that will work for me and purchase!

Popular Sandwich Spot Worldwide: SUBWAY
March 25, 2017
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Did you know there are 44,830* Subway locations around the entire world? *According to Google when I searched: How many locations does Subway have, that is where I got the answer.

Subway used to be one of my favorite spots for sandwiches especially because it is very affordable and a healthier alternative meal. You could easily purchase a footlong sandwich for $5 to $7 bucks. A footlong could be eaten entirely by someone extremely hungry, shared among two people or one could eat half for lunch and the other half for dinner.

One of my favorite sandwiches I typically bought at Subway is called, Italian BMT. When you walk into a Subway you are asked what kind of bread you would like and the sandwich type you would like to order.

The available bread types:

  • 9 Grain Wheat
  • 9 Grain Honey Oat
  • Italian
  • Parmesan Oregano
  • Sesame
  • Flat Bread

I would usually request a footlong with Italian or if I want to be healthy, I would get the 9 Grain Wheat. I always get my sandwich toasted before stuffing the sandwich with vegetables.

As for the Italian BMT, what’s inside?

  • Genoa Salami
  • Spicy Pepperoni
  • Black Forest Ham
  • Your choice of cheese: Provolone, American, Swiss. For the most part, I would request provolone cheese, sometimes American.
    Optional: You could add avocado or bacon for extra if you would like.

Then, you have unlimited choice of your vegetables at no additional charge.

  • Lettuce
  • Spinach
  • Cucumbers
  • Green Bell Peppers
  • Red Onions
  • Tomatoes
  • Banana Peppers
  • Pickles
  • Olives
  • Jalapeños
  • And so forth (depending on your location)

I usually just order my sandwich with lettuce, spinach, cucumbers, red onions, green bell peppers and regular mayonnaise. You have your choice of dressing/finishing touches at no additional charge also!

A tip back in the day was you could request the vegetables on the side to make a salad if you like the sandwich separate without the vegetables (which is how I prefer it) and so your sandwich would not be soggy, but now if you request this option, it will cost you extra.

Now, I prefer other sandwich spots – but the deals at Subway is still around and now they even have soups available!

How to keep your Smartphone in Great Condition
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When you pay retail price for a smartphone, I would think you want to take great care of your phone right? I sure do! I am going to share some tips on how I keep great care for my smartphones so in a couple of years, I will have a better resale value and use that money toward a new phone!

How do I keep my phone in great condition?

  • You will need a screen protector – not just any screen protector but a tempered glass screen protector. A tempered glass screen protector prevents scratches, chips and helps your phone encase of any drops you may have. If your phone drops the tempered glass protector will be there to help prevent cracks to your phone essentially saving you $200 bucks for a screen replacement. Of course, it is just a protection – every drop scenario is different but for as long as I have owned my smartphones and used tempered glass screen protectors, I have personally saved my phone! Do not purchase these tempered glass protectors in stores because they are a rip off ranging from $20 to $30 bucks, instead on Amazon they are usually $8 to $15 bucks. I specifically like to purchase the 2 pack, so I could have back up just encase I drop my phone and the screen protector is damaged, but not my phone!
  • You will need a secure phone case – you do not necessarily need a bulky case like an Otterbox, but you want a phone case that will not pop out or fall apart when dropped. You could test on carpet and see if your case you selected holds up. I would recommend a case that has a raised outer lip so that if the phone does fall face down, the raised lip would not hit the screen directly “even” having a tempered glass screen protector.
  • Do not toss your phone, take the extra second to put your phone down.
  • Keep your phones original box, Apple bag, receipt if you could – when you resale your phone this adds value as you would be the original owner and it is more trustworthy to purchase from you!
In-N-Out Burger – Very Popular & Affordable!
March 25, 2017
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Here in California – the most popular burger spot is called In – N – Out. In – N – Out is also available among other states as well.

In the photo below I snapped is what my fiancé and I would typically grab when we visit an In -N- Out.

  • For her: Cheeseburger with Grilled Onions, No Tomatoes, Lettuce, Spread and a Bun.
  • For him: Double Cheeseburger with Grilled Onions, Tomatoes, Lettuce, Spread and a Bun.
  • To share: Animal Fries and that consist of Grilled Onions, Cheese and Spread. Sometimes, we would just regular fries and ask for complimentary spread.

Occasionally, we would get a strawberry milkshake as a treat but not often.

Overall, we do not often eat In -N- Out because I would much prefer an authentic burger like at Red Robins. I like options when it comes to personalizing my burger and not necessarily just simple. You could have a simple burger at home in my opinion, and the lines for In-N-Out is ridiculously long at all times of the day!

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Some reasons why In -N- Out is popular,

  • The prices are extremely affordable! For a few bucks you could get yourself a cheeseburger or a meal.
  • The menu is very simple and there is also a “secret” menu! The secret menu is not seen on the menu or in stores – you have to research it on the internet. The animal fries above is a secret menu item and cost more than the regular fries.
  • The food is supposedly made fresh and with quality. In-N-Out claims that they do not freeze, use pre-packaged or microwaved foods. Everything is made the traditional method however in for the fries – in order to melt the cheese, they put the already fried fries and slice of packaged cheese on top then microwave it.. so?

What is the most popular burger spot in your area? 

How to pick the perfect ring?
March 25, 2017
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Screen Shot 2017-03-24 at 7.25.24 PMIt took nearly three months for me to pick out the “perfect” engagement setting and diamond and then I had to get it custom sized since I have a larger finger than the standard size seven. *The setting is not quite the perfect as I would hope, but it will do for now. I actually preferred a platinum diamond setting but they only had 14K white gold option for the particular setting I selected so, I settled with that.

Why did it take me several months to find my ring? It took me several months because ideally, you should not be rushed to find your perfect ring! You may like a ring for that particular moment, but after a few days – you can hate it and that is what happened to a couple of choices I had. Plus, it is very overwhelming to visit a jewelry store as the selection is so large. Plus, you can be intimidated when you have so many to look at that you may over look the one you actually like. Also, when a sales associate helps you with showing you the rings – you can listen to their feedback, but do not keep it consideration sometimes they say this will look good but do not know your personality and just want to make a sale.

My recommendation is to spend an afternoon at a couple of jewelry stores. Narrow your choice of ring settings and then take pictures of the ring settings with the size stone you ideally want and then sleep on it. The following night, if you still like the ring, just look at the picture and still keep your weekends open to browse at other settings.

Ultimately, a month or so passed by and I narrowed down to three ring settings and even though I asked feedback from family members, I decided on one that I loved and selected. My overall tip is to not be rushed because if you are, rings are not something you can easily return with a receipt. There is always some sort of restocking fee or depreciation fee “even” if it was just a night, so it is important to never rush!