Healthy Lifestyle

What I learned in 2015

Happy New Year’s Eve y’all!

I hope 2015 was a great, successful and learning experience for everyone. I will not look at is as a “bad year, good year, etc”. I am FINISHED with labels because overall it IS what you make of it!  So my 2015 was a fabulous learning experience. I have grown so much and will continue to grow in 2016.

So what did I learn!?  Oh where do I begin!

I learned…….

  • how to pole dance
  • how important family is to me

that I enjoy reading (AND audiobooks)

My top picks:


  • that fitness is not really a priority of mine
  • that I do not love pushing my body to its limits
  • that I enjoy food but am not a foodie
  • that overnight oats are pretty yummy and fabulous
  • that I love peanut butter

Image result for overnight oats

  • how to accept people
  • how to start accepting myself (this is my 2016 goal)


  • it is important to change things up
  • that fear is a GOOD thing

  • being uncomfortable MAKES you stronger

  • that I love hot sauce!
  • that you can NOT run away from your problems

  • how to relax more

  • how to speak my mind, even it if hurts me or you

Happy New Year!!!



Healthy Lifestyle

UnManic Monday Madness

There is NO better way (for me) to de-stress after a Manic Monday than to finally sit down for the night and catch up and read my favorite BLOGS!

I thought I’d share ELEVEN (because I felt like being OFF tonight, and because I can!) of my favorite blogs with my special friends and readers (YOU!)

  1. Running With Spoons

I think this is one of the first blogs I started following. I reached out to Amanda and she gave me some kind words ❤  I especially love her weekly. Her simplicity, great articles and yummy recipes always resonate with me 🙂   A favorite of mine?  Her weekly love links

2.  Fairyburger

I love this special lady! She is a medical student and I have been following her through her rotations! (Woah!). She posts some amazing recipes and is so body positive, this is absolutely a MUST read for me every week!! I can not wait to try out her Apple Nachos!

3.  Free People Blog

Amazing, inspirational articles. Yoga. And the BEST horoscope I have found!

4. In My Skinny Genes
Love her positive body image vibes and eating disorder recovery !!!

5.  Mind Body Musings (Maddy Moon)

Love her approach to life, faith, recovery and body positivity. Maddy’s podcasts and blog have been so inspirational to me ❤

6. A Cup of Jo

Life. Motherhood. Food. Love love LOVE this blog too!! Favorite feature? The weekend link lists

7. House of Turquoise

Those who know me. Know my favorite color. Blue. All shades of it. I love the beachy house decor and ideas always featured!

8. NYwishesChicagodreams

I love following this special lady. Her love and passion for music, books and movies really shines through in her writings and works!  Check her out!

Favorite Feature? Weekend Updates in Pictures!

9.  The Lost Girls Guide to Finding The World

Woah. I just found this amazing woman. Ashlyn George had intentions of becoming a high school teacher…..instead she now travels the world and blogs about it!  I think it is pretty cool that she seeks out McDonalds’ in each country, snaps photos of the Big Mac’s and compares them!  She is my inspiration!! I would love to do this yet would be so afraid to hitchhike! 🙂

10.  Cupcakes & Cashmere

Love the name. Love the lady. Food. Style. Fashion. All good girly things

11. Buggy and Buddy

This has always been my go to for crafts, art projects and such for my students and kiddo’s in the family. So many awesome ideas!!


Healthy Lifestyle

Why I exercise?

Why Do I exercise?

I am trying to be real and honest with myself as to WHY I exercise. Yes , exercise is and can be healthy and have many benefits WHEN your mind is in it for the right reasons. For the past 20 years I have brainwashed myself and punished myself with exercise, so I am really going to dig deep into WHY I exercise and how I can do so in a healthy way, no matter what it takes. So here is the good, the bad and the real truth…

 I exercise:

Because I feel like I should. Society talks about the benefits of it. There are tons of blogs, facebook posts, gym advertisements associating exercise with looking and feeling good.  All around people talk about feeling GUILTY for not exercising. I would really be interested in doing a little study to see how often people bring up exercise in a NEGATIVE way (For example:  I need to run tonight because I ate 5 cookies, or, I want to loose XX pounds so that I can look awesome at my holiday party, etc)  Look in most any magazine, tv commercial, facebook, instagram, pinterest. Most of the reasons FOR exercising are to loose weight and look HOT and sexy…..Why? WHy can’t we focus on exercise to just feel good instead of having to look a certain why? If we focused less on (unrealistic) looks, I think people would be more motivated and inspired to MOVE vs. exercise…Its all about CHANGING our bodies so that we can be HAPPY, instead of embracing the perfect, amazing, wonderful bodies we ALREADY have.

Tough core exercises to get your belly flat in no time. #fitness #workout #health Here’s Everything You Need To Know To Actually Lose Body Fat17 Ways to Lose Weight When You Have No Time! Fastest Ways to Lose Thigh Fat: Flattening your belly needs a good workout that targets all the core regions to burn the calories. Here are 15 effective abs exercise for women ...: Fitness Inspiration

Guess what!? You’ll get there and you STILL won’t be happy! Trust me!  It will just be the next thing and you think “Once I get “THERE” I will be happy”………Nope, all it has gotten me was: No confidence, an eating disorder, insecurity and extreme self hate towards myself and body.

To burn off the food and calories I do eat

Because I feel lazy and unmotivated if I don’t

Because I feel guilty and not good enough if I don’t

Because I have done it for so many years that I will feel like a failure if I do not do just as much or more as I used to

Because when YOU talk about exercise it makes me feel like I should need to and want to do it

So that I can enjoy an occasional glass of wine

So that I can eat ice cream or something not “clean” once in a while………hell, so that I can eat ANYTHING, healthy or “not healthy” in my biased standards

So that people do not judge me for NOT exercising

Because I feel I will lose muscle tone, flexibility and strength if I don’t

Because it makes me feel better about myself, like I have done or achieved something

Because it gives me more energy

Because then I do not feel AS guilty eating and enjoying food

Because I feel like no one will like me if I “let myself go”

Because I fear of being fat and lazy

So that my dog can get in some exercise as well (with my walks)

To clear my mind

* I have gone back and bolded the ones that are HEALTHY reasons. 3 …THREE. There are only 3 healthy reasons, the rest are unhealthy ways of thinking……..Most of my negative and unhealthy goals come from the ways OTHERS perceive me or what society perceives and NOT my own values. This is something I am working on in ALL areas of my life. Learning to listen to what is best for me. Learning to trust myself, my thoughts and my body

So ask yourself WHY do you exercise?  Are you searching for happiness and control because other areas of your life are out of control?

BOOKS, Healthy Lifestyle, House and Home, recipes

Wednesday Wants..

I feel like my last few posts have been pretty negative, so I wanted to lighten things up a bit with one of my Wednesday Wants posts!!


I want…………

to encourage anyone needed a lift me up, struggling with body image, or struggling with being comfortable in their own skin, to read this AMAZING (Free) Kindle read called Body Image Remix: by Summer Innanen (My all time FAVORITE blogger!)  The book is amazing and filled with self help and journal prompts. I seriously whipped through this book in one night 🙂 I still am working on the journal questions and go back whenever I need a pick me up!

Let me know what you think!!


I want…………

everyone to remember this

I want…………

to really learn MORE about yoga. The history (here) , the different types, and how to truly embrace it for what it is and let go on any misconceptions that I currently have about yoga.

I want…………

to make these again NOM NOM NOM

I want…………

to try wine ice cream (kinda)

Cherry Merlot actually sounds pretty yummy!

I want…………

to see Christmas lights. Drive around, drink hot cocoa and just get lost in the lights. Hell I want someone to take me and drive me around so I can see them!

I want…………

To share a “stare”

Each morning I have car duty at work. I help kids get out of the car, greet them and help them have a great start to their day

There is this one father, who absolutely LOVES his child more than words. How do I know this?

Well, it is now December, and he STILL rolls down the window, and stares at his son with a huge smile and watches him walk into the building

This melts my heart.

I want…………

to stop being so ashamed of my feelings and just OWN THEM

 I want…………

to listen to this udio book when I drive back to New Jersey for Christmas

Not That Kind of Girl

I want…………

These golden gals to get adopted (they are so soooo sweet!) 
I want………… 

I want…………

I want…………


 I want………… 
So cute

Healthy Lifestyle


I want to be alone so that……

I can wear sweats and not feel guilty for not looking “good enough” or pretty enough


I don’t have to compare myself to other women, or feel like others are comparing me to them

I can think about my goals , future as well as reflect on what is NOT working on me

 I can NEVER turn the television on

Girl Reading a Book at Home Free Image Download

I can run out to the store whenever I want. Even if its just for a pack of gum. I don’t want you to tell me otherwise, or convince me not to go

I can do what I want when I want

Go for my long walks and listen to my audio books

Go out with friends when I feel like it, without needing to see them every day

I can hide from the world when I want to

I can feel crappy and not have to pretend I feel great

I can go to sleep at 9 or 1 am , whenever I feel like

I can cry

I can call or text people in my life

I can blog

I can beat myself up for not being good enough

I can feel fat, ugly and bloated

I can sit with a frown on my face when I feel sad instead of pretending to be happy and forcing a smile

Have messy hair, no make up


Wear mismatched socks or ugly underwear

Sit quietly and read, not having to talk or entertain

Eat what I want, went I want without feeling judged by others, or more importantly myself

Read my blogs, horoscopes

Not have to worry about disappointing you

Not to have to worry about you leaving me or finding someone better

 I can’t get hurt

 I can’t judge you for things I don’t agree with, then feel guilty about because I am judging and I would not want anyone to judge me

I don’t have to worry about you looking at other people/women

I don’t have to feel like I am not good enough for you

I don’t have to worry about making you a meal when I am tired, hungry and feeling selfish

I don’t have to take care of you because I can barely take care of myself at this time

I don’t have to make myself feel uncomfortable by asking you for help

I don’t have to shower for a 2nd time after work in order to feel like I look “nice”  because I feel it s not good enough for someone else

I realize most of the negative reasons I want to be alone is because I can not effectively communicate what I DO want and need…..I realize that others most likely won’t care if I don’t always do what they want, but in my head I feel like a failure………SO I realize I still have a lot of work to do. I am a work in progress:

Healthy Lifestyle

Things will be different

Things will be different WHEN……….

I am healthier BOTH Physically and Emotionally/Mentally

*You fill in the line ABOVE with YOUR belief*


How many times have you stopped yourself from achieving your dreams and goals because you feel you are not capable of attaining those things because you are NOT at a certain weight, make a certain amount of money, have a certain type of relationship, fill in the blank??

Well that is me.  I end up being in a miserable, downward spiraling slump because I am not where I am at in my life or where I had envisioned being. Its about time for me to let go of those unrealistic expectations and start working on living NOW instead of WHEN…..

I will be happy WHEN…..

I get my dream job, you know, the one I am 100% happy with all the time, make big bucks, work those perfect hours. Things are on my terms

I find that special romantic partner that is everything I have ever imagined and more. He aides in my happiness , enjoys similar interests, we do not judge each other, have that perfect amazing fire and attraction. Things are on my terms

I achieve those perfect friendships. We are always on the same page. We have pillow fights. Things are on my terms.

I can eat intuitively and not worry about gaining weight, how I look, what I want to eat, how much of it I want to do. Oh things will be so different. Things will be happy and perfect since I have freed up all that space that overtakes most of my day. I wont have to worry about seeing friends for fear of hunger striking, ending dates and nights early because I am starving and want to go home to eat (in shame). 

When I can give up beating myself up over exercising, burning calories and moving. If I can only get all those things done in the day AND yet manage to focus on everything else, then I will achieve happiness and things will be different…….

What is it that I have been chasing all these year?

I have always imagined things being BETTER if I were just THIN and HEALTHY.  If I could just eat what I want, exercise when I want and still remain THIN, then I would achieve ultimate happiness.

This is my story.  This is my reason for being unable to attain true happiness. This is my reason for feeling stuck.

Of course I will not move on , grow and love myself with such tough expectations on myself.

I can not do and be everything all the time. I can not make everyone ELSE happy and give myself the love I need as well.

I have been chasing so much all these year…….yet really holding myself back from being present and being grateful for what I do have.

I THOUGHT I would be happier picking up and moving. I did not think I needed people. I thought I needed and wanted change and challenge


Yet, change and challenge are WITHIN me. Not 500 miles away. I do not need to go far to make changes. The only thing that has done is making those changes a bit harder.  I have learned the hard way about the things I took for granted.  I never appreciate what is RIGHT there in front of me until my world is turned upside down

What a huge eye opener and reminder to just enjoy each day and moment for what it is and what it is worth and the potential it has.

I am trying hard to pull myself out of this downward spiral and slump I have gotten myself in. I feel like I have placed myself in uncomfortable situations in ALL areas of my life. Food, career, relationships. Life in general is tough for me right now. SO I know I need to make changes.

Yet those changes need to be small , personal and from within. I do not need to move mountains in order to work on myself and grow

So I may not be where my HEAD tells me I should be, but that should NOT stop me from answering these questions………

Why can’t I be happy in my job NOW?
Why can’t I be happy in my body now?

Why can’t I be happy in my relationships NOW?

I put myself down, telling myself I can not have or be all those things UNTIL I reach my ideal of physical and emotional health, but I already know myself and that will NEVER happen. Ill always set HIGHER goals, jsut like I do/did with food and exercise. SO right now I need to figure out how to start living in the moment and living today as if I were where I “think” I should be. I need to let go of that unrealistic thinking and just be happy being me…..

Healthy Lifestyle

A Letter to Myself (From my body)

The past year has been a time for growth, rebuilding and change for me.  I have invested a lot of time in journal-ing, seeking my “purpose”, building relationships with myself and others and self/body love.

I came across an amazing program with journal entries, self love work and “homework” (weeeeeeeeee as a teacher, I give it, but I secretly CRAVE receiving it and doing it!) Interested? Check it out here

So my first assignment was to write a letter to myself from…… body. How fitting, true and real.  I let my vulnerabilities come out and figured what better way to grow than to share my insecurities and “shame” with my readers. This is what helps me spread my message, and grow!

So here it is.

To:  myself

From:  My body


Dear Diana,

I have decided to write to you because I know how much you enjoy reading and feeling at the same time (I know this is how you learn best!)  I am a little hurt because I have been trying for days, months, and YEARS to get through to you. Yet you avoid me and push me down and make me feel “wrong” and not important most of the time.  So today, I am going to be blunt. I am going to get it all out there, because I feel you NEED to hear this………

I remember the good ol’ days. We used to have SO much fun together. We would run around, play games, and eat what we wanted when we wanted. I remember those delicious home made, right out of the oven chocolate chip cookies, occasional trips to McDonalds for our favorite (#2 meal! 2 cheeseburgers, fries, extra pickles, nom nom nom). Sunday morning pancakes (Blueberry were ok, but we know OUR favorite was the chocolate chip).  Bike rides with friends to 711 for candy and soda.  Grandmoms home made polish gnocchi  

Pierogie eating contests with Uncle John.

Drinking hot cocoa with mini marshmallows and laughing so hard (that a marshmallow came out of my nose!) 

Birthday parties with cake and ice cream (Better yet ICE CREAM CAKE, oh those delicious chocolately nuggets)

  Moms famous nightly meals, we loved when our veggies mixed in with the mashed potatoes! 

Mixing an almost empty peanut butter jar with chocolate syrup, we TRIED to recreate reeses peanut butter cups, BUT it was NOTHING in comparison, yet we still ate it

  Friday nights were designated as PIZZA nights!!! Ohhhhhhhhhhhh yeah baby! Hopefully there was enough left for the next morning. What better way to spend time together than with COLD pizza and cartoons!! 

Remember that time we were introduced to ball park hot dogs with french’s mustard? I think we ate them for about a week! 

When my moms friend babysat us, we would get those delicious powdery snowflake rolls with either bologna and cheese or chicken roll and cheese!

You looked so silly with that white powder all of your lips!   The hoagies at the end of Tina and mikes street in Philly…..although I think I really enjoyed the bread and oil dressing, since pretty much everything else came off!  Donut s and fishing with dad (Boston cream!), homemade milkshakes, bagels with cream cheese.

We did not like EVERYTHING, but we KNEW what we liked and we knew when we wanted or needed it.

WHAT HAPPENED?  I’ll tell you, since you try to avoid it.

We grew up. Pressure, school, friends, family.  Things began to get out of control. We had an autistic brother, some family issues AND guess what, that all resorted to feelings of shame. You started to try to hide things and PRETEND everything was perfect. You kept it ALL inside. You started trying to please people to have them like you because that made YOU feel good. Yet something was still off. You were not getting the attention you wanted. Some people seemed to have it all. Great hair, great grades, great family, great clothes andddddddddd great bodies.  Boys liked the girls that were thin and pretty. You started giving up on the sports your liked and enjoyed and started focusing on how to get noticed

Your “friend” (I’ll call her that loosely) challenged you to a new game.  “let’s see if we can NOT eat all day, then save up our calories for one big meal at the end of the day”.  Fun.  Guess what?!  You were GOOD at it!!  In fact you were GREAT at it!  You were never the best at soccer or running or school, so you FINALLY had something you were good at! 

This is where you started ignoring me.  You came up with these rules.  You stopped listening to me and my voice. You hurt me by ignoring me and pretending I no longer existed and that I was WRONG.

You began to restrict. You began to come up with food rules. You began categorizing food as good and bad. You began exercising almost as insanely as you were eating. 

YOU were getting noticed.

This went on for 20 years.  It changed faces many ways, in fact, you had a lot of people fooled a lot of those years!!  Yet those feelings and thoughts were always there and MOST importantly, I was absent. You ignored me and hurt me for all that time. Like I meant nothing to you.

Over those 20 years, you became obsessive about certain foods. One time, you ate cereal for EVERY meal, 3x per day, in a special bowl with a special spoon. Do you remember that? You even brought the special spoon and bowl to the Florida Keys on our family vacation.

Then it was pretzels. Pretzels became a habit and a MUST at every meal. You said you didn’t feel complete or content without them……..that’s only because you were missing out on so much, those pretzels were a temporary patch that made you feel better and comforted.  It was easier to eat the same thing and be In control than to experiment, try new things and take care of yourself.  This left you with plenty of time and opportunity to try and save “others”.  You thought you were a failure at everything (except controlling your food) So you tried to focus on others. Making them happy, trying to fix their issues and problems, and you put ME and all of our issues aside, in fact, pretended they were not there

These “games” went on for years. Fat, no fat. Carbs, no carbs. Bagels for breakfast, chicken for dinner.  We ordered the same boring things at restaurants EVERY time. 

These habits became a part of you. You forgot ALL about me. You forgot what it felt like to trust me, your body. All those years of suppressing my needs, made you forgot how to do something that is supposed to be natural and part of life. You forgot and do NOT know how to eat.  You do not know how to listen for those cues that I am giving you. You are numb with food AND with people. 

So this is my final attempt to try and help you.  I can see I am getting through to you finally, yet you still struggle and battle with me.  I tell you I am hungry, and you challenge me that you MUST not be because you just ate.  I tell you to eat more, and you question me. I tell you that something is good, you worry that you will NEVER stop eating it.  I tell you I love you JUST as you are and no matter HOW you will be or look. You tell me that only being thin and “perfect” is good enough for you. 


Stop fighting me so that you can live your life again. Stop fighting me so that you can ENJOY life again. STOP Fighting me so you can free yourself at a time to do things you truly enjoy. Enjoy people and moments in your life.

Please let go of all those horrible controlling thoughts and rules you instilled. You do not have to follow them. You have the power to break free from them and FINALLY become that person you are. That person you WANT to be. That person OTHERS want and need.  That person that will finally smile more and enjoy more of your day.  That person that focuses on what she wants to do with her life and how she will change the world ❤

I love you , its about time you start loving yourself and me as well…….

Your body