I spend lots of time with women in fitting rooms and closets. The intimacy of the setting allows for really great conversations. Often these conversations have nothing to do with style...instead they center around sharing ways to live a simple, joyful, healthy, incredible life.
Sometimes clients inquire about what's in my imaginary Little Black Book.
Asking questions like…
How do you tackle the dreaded upper arm jiggle?
What movie has stayed with you?
What book touched your soul more than any other?
Which apps do you really find fantastic?
Any favorite easy recipes?
I’m always thrilled when someone shares a tried & true tip with me.
I feel like a lucky insider when I learn of a ‘life hack’ that can improve the quality of my days.
This is a short list of my favorite things to share. Each of these seven items has made my life better. I am happy to open up my ‘little black book’ to you.
In no specific order…here are seven of my favorite things.
This is hands down the best online workout tool I have ever used. And it’s FREE! I discovered
these videos years ago and keep coming back. Recently, I was very bored with my home workouts. I decided to revisit this long-standing site. I am currently working my way through the HIIT Max Workouts. I am completely hooked! I truly look forward to spending time with the spunky, incredibly fit, British chick who sweats right along with me each workout.
Note: The BodyRock.TV website is very helpful for basic information about what they offer and for descriptions of what each workout includes. However, I feel that the videos are easier to find and watch on their YouTube channel…there you can even make a playlist so that you needn’t search for the videos you’d like to repeat. Warning: the older videos (not in the Hiit Max series) are fairly risqué as the photographer/boyfriend was once an adult filmmaker...rest assured, the new workouts are just as fierce without all of the 'exposure'.
Easy to modify...even with no equipment. Check it out! Prepare to for sore muscles!
I discovered this fantastic meditation app a few years ago. I was really tired of listening to guided meditations led by men and women with drippy, new-age voices. I found myself irritated by their overly soothing sound. Enter Andy Pudicomme. This Jude Law sound-alike brings meditation to real life. I could go on and on about the profound benefits of this easy to use, brilliantly organized, customizable app, but it's best you just try it out for yourself.
Headspace has changed my life!
You can give it a go for FREE! I now buy the a yearly subscription for about $75. Money well spent!
3. MyPlate - Livestrong
My husband began using this app several years ago to track the calories he consumes and burns.
I used it for a while and then fell off the wagon. I'm using it again and love the changes they’ve made. The FREE version is perfect for my needs.
Each day, you enter what you eat...and your physical activity. It’s super simple and it's a great way to maintain accountability.
4. No Knead Bread- Sullivan Street Bakery
This one may seem a bit out of left field, but please stay with me. I've always liked to bake…desserts. Truth be told, only three desserts...Chocolate Chip Cookies, Brownies and Chocolate Cake. I dabbled in the land of bread baking…but always failed. No patience. No place warm enough to let bread rise. And now I live at a high altitude. Doomed.
One visit from my dad and I'm a bread baker! He visited for five days in Februrary. He made bread every day while he was at our house. I’ve baked at least two loaves a week, every week, since March 1st. I don’t think we'll ever go back to store-bought bread.
Do yourself a favor and make a loaf. It is ridiculously simple. Click here for the recipe. And here for the original article from The New York Times.
Watch Mark Bittman's short video below. This one is a game-changer!
5. the gift of an ordinary day
This is one of those books that stays with me, always. Especially right now as my oldest child finishes 10th grade…when I’m certain she just finished 1st grade five minutes ago. Why does time seem to speed up as our children grow?
the gift of an ordinary day is a 'keep on your nightstand' kind of book. Re-reading a chapter or two helps me keep a bit of perspective. Ms. Kenison's words remind me to stay present and
hold onto the daily joys of motherhood...even when it's tough.
Below is a video of the author reading an excerpt. Have tissues. It’s so worth it.
6. The Intouchables
A beautiful, funny, poignant reminder of the blessings that surround us. I could watch this one over and over. A truly wonderful film. French with English subtitles, but please don’t let that keep you from watching it. I believe it's available on DVD through Netflix and also at most libraries.
I have happily learned the art of the power nap. I'm a better person for it. Practice makes perfect. Grab a nap when you can. The shorter the better... 12-15 minutes works best for me. Although, I never argue with a longer, rainy day snooze when my schedule allows:-)
I tried to keep this list simple...but now it seems like a lot of information. Please email me with any questions or post a comment. I will respond within 24 hours...if not sooner.
I'd love to know your thoughts! Hoping you love some of these things as much as I do.
Thanks for reading.
Hello, I'm Kristen.
As a personal stylist,