time for YOU / 2018

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I can’t believe it’s 2018!!! It’s time to get back to your goals and take care of yourself. But before you set new goals, tell yourself TWO things you are proud of accomplishing last year. I wrote mine down yesterday and it felt good!

Some of you have been with me since my early blogging days, which I started back in 2010 with Mommy in Manhattan. I was a young mom with three little kids, a husband who worked all the time, and was having a love affair with New York City. I wanted a way to connect with other moms who were raising their babies in the city. At the core, I am still very much that girl. The city awes and inspires me, and I love highlighting that in my blog. I see myself retiring in the city one day and walking to the market and shows on a daily basis (sighhhh). I have definitely turned into an urban gal. Despite now living in Westport, CT, I’m in the city at least twice a week.

My youngest dances for the NYC Ballet school and is required to be in Manhattan twice a week. Luckily I have great friends I get to see while I’m there and work functions to keep me busy. Showcasing this city and all it has to offer is something I love to do… and for those of you who don’t live here, hopefully it gives you fun ideas for what to do when you visit! I continue to blog because honestly it’s a great way to earn money for my family while still being a stay at home mom. That is definitely a huge advantage. But really it keeps me interacting with all of you and it pushes me to try new things. I’m so pleased with how this community has been formed.

As you know, Lisa and I decided to part ways a few months ago. Both of us were wanting to take blogging in different directions, and I’ve been thinking a ton about what that will mean for Lunchpails. I’m now working full time and have an incredible little team. Our goal is to keep you up to date with all the latest and greatest.

I’ve found that my most successful posts are the ones that focus on fitness and health, so I’d love to include more workouts and recipes. I want to mix more high fashion with things you can buy at Target. Deals are always on my radar. As busy moms we are usually in our workout clothes or Madewell jeans, and though I ADORE getting dressed up for a night out in NYC, the truth is that most days I’m flying by the seat of my Lulus like the rest of you! I’m really excited to expand the website this year and fulfill some dreams I’ve been wanting to do. I’ll be sharing all of this so stay tuned.

I’ve had a bunch of questions about my family and if L&L will turn into my family blog. The answer is no. My kids are growing up and I prefer to keep them off the internet as much as possible. Davis will be a teen soon! He definitely doesn’t want to spend his time taking pictures with me. haha. They love doing a few kid campaigns once in awhile but for the most part they will be sprinkled in just a touch (as you see my day to day activities on instagram stories). This will not turn into a family blog. It will stay fashion focused and I’ll continue to bring the best deals.

Since I’m an aesthetician, I want to continue sharing all the skin tips and tricks I come across. Many of you have been along with me on my Melasma journey and it’s so gratifying to hear that my pursuit for a solution has helped others as well! So I will definitely continue to focus on skin care and making sure we are all able to get our hands on the best products that work.

Last year L&L did a mini series – Better YOU. (more articles linked below if you want to get caught up on 2017) The most popular post was When is correct age for BOTOX & FILLERS .

January will be full of Better YOU posts so get ready! I’m teaming up with Cali Bett (MacroGal) and I’ll be sharing my workout journey with her newly launched FITNESS PROGRAM to get your leanest and strongest body yet. Learn more about the 12 week fitness program HERE

Use my code for 20% off : JENNA20 

NUTRITION & FITNESS GOALS 

I started using my HEALTH COACH about SIX months ago. Not only has she taught me how to eat as a celiac, she has taught me so many ways to handle anxiety, stress, and work life balance. She has taught me to outline my intentions and be real with myself. The first step in the process is to evaluate your relationships,work life,health goals, and spirituality. What are your intentions with all of these topics? Are they toxic?? Do they keep you from reaching your full potential of happiness? What needs to change to help you keep growing and reaching new heights? I’m starting this FITNESS PROGRAM today from one of my favorite fitness bloggers Cali Bett. Get 20% off today! Her new program is amazing and will help you create your leanest and strongest body yet. I’ll be sharing this the next 12 weeks and how it transforms my body. My goal this month is to get Cali’s abs. Have you seen them!!? Use my code for 20% off : JENNA20 

SOCIAL MEDIA

I have days just like all of you when I want to get completely off social media. Too much of something is never good. I know I have my limits too. I have certain times in my day when I allow myself to be on my phone. This has definitely given me waaaaaay more time for other things than I realized. I have specific intentions when I’m on my phone. I get my work done, connect with you guys and then I get off. If I have to be on my phone when my kids are around I tell them what I’m doing on my phone. This communication really works. They understand that I’m looking up directions or meeting a quick deadline, or texting one of their friends for a playdate. They need to understand my intentions for being on my phone. Studies show that kids feel ignored and feel second best to i-phones. I’m trying really hard to share what I’m doing on my phone when my kids are around. I make it quick or I excuse myself so they don’t have to watch me bury my face in the phone. (haha) Another big issue with social media (instagram & facebook) is the trap of following people that annoy you, or instantly bring negative feelings into your day. These are all things you want to avoid. Unfollow people. It really isn’t a big deal. You need to protect yourself and the goals you have. Instagram doesn’t tell the account that you have unfollowed. So don’t worry too much about it. I read this yesterday and it really hit home for me– “Smart phones are spiking our stress levels, killing attention spans, and even making us less intelligent. They are hijacking our brains.” — Wall Street Journal

HEALTH GOALS

Okay, this is one of my favorite topics. Let’s get healthy! The first step is accepting who you are in the present. You might not be satisfied with your health or routine right now but this is something that can always change. Day ONE should always start today. I had to completely change my lifestyle this past year. It has not been easy but it has been so rewarding. I’m in my mid thirties and I honestly think all women should get blood work done to check hormone levels as well as vitamin deficiencies. You will know how your body is working on the inside so that you can create a program that will work for your body on the outside. You will know your levels for cholesterol, progesterone, estrogen,thyroid,white blood cell count,etc. Most people need their thyroid tested because it determines how efficient your metabolism is working. This is tied directly to how fast you can effectively burn energy (calories) in your body. This will help you lose weight or maintain your weight. GAME CHANGER!! If you want to find a doctor to test these levels google endocrinologist in your area.

Now goals for exercising. COMMITT! Say your goals out loud to yourself in a mirror. When I took a class by Tracy Andersen (fitness guru) she said the one thing that makes people yo-yo in weight is not committing every single day. Plan your week to make it be successful. As busy moms all of us juggle our families, work, and responsibilites. Make exercise a priority. It’s not an extra thing if you have time. It’s part of your day. It needs to be checked off your to-do list, just like making lunches in the morning for your kids. It’s just as important to take care of yourself so that you can be a better mom,wife,sister,employee or friend.

Weight training should be top of your list. Did you know that the amount of muscle mass in your body is directly related to your health and metabolism? My body only started changing when I added weight resistance to my routine. I reduced my cardio by half and added more weights. Read this for more workout tips. 5 THINGS TO KEEP IN YOUR GYM BAG(I swear by these)

WHAT I’M EATING

My trainer has me doing a very simple routine right now. I meal prep on Sundays and have most of my food ready to go for the week. Breakfast is always 2 eggs and avocado. Lunch options -quinoa, shredded chicken, spinach, tossed with a mustard dressing. I also do a ton of salads for lunch with this  HOMEMADE DRESSING I shared last week. Dinner is always lean fish or chicken with 2 sides of vegetables and rice. When I get home from a workout I drink a chocolate protein shake with 1/2 banana , PB2, spinach, and ice. I also take my morning vitamins with this shake. I keep my fridge stocked with tons of grilled veggies so when I’m hungry I reach for veggies. The more veggies I eat in a day the better I feel! I take Zinc,MSM, Multi vitamin,Vit C and Co-Q 10. At night I take my omega 3 vitamins and another round of multi-vitamins. For snacks in the day I try to limit them. I am completely off sugar for the most part. I wrote this post on MELASMA and SKINCARE PEEL. In my opinion diets high in sugar/carbs cause skin issues because it effects estrogen levels. I also wrote about skincare products to use here that really make a difference. When I snack I reach for this PROTEIN BALL with a little chocolate in it. Or I love peanut butter over rice cakes with a sliced banana.

ANXIETY/STRESS/HAPPINESS

Don’t let negativity settle into you. Let it pass right through you. Control your mind and only allow positive thoughts and people to be apart of your life. Protect yourself the same way you protect your kids. Life creates anxiety for all of us. I’ve learned that small moments of meditation, prayer, and quiet time can go a long way for me. If I can’t seem to shake an emotion that is throwing me off,  I have my inner circle of friends I can call for support or I hop on face time and chat with my health coach. Find someone that understands you. Plan a few things in your week that are fun and make you feel alive. Get outside more. Hike or ride a bike with your kids or family. I love walking the beach. I find a sense of calm there. I also love to serve people or shop for them. I enjoy finding cute little things for friends that will make them feel good. I like getting lost in thinking about other people. It makes me feel calm. What makes you feel calm?

Happiness is not a life without problems, but the strength to overcome the problems that come our way. We are responsible for creating our own happiness or un-happiness. How we react to adversities depends on us. I’ve learned to just be happy, no matter how difficult the situation. It’s exactly how you perceive it. Be the change you want to see, live in the moment, count your blessings and be thankful for what you have.

My motto for 2018 is “If not now, when? If not me, who?”Cheesy as it may seem, I’m really trying this new year to procrastinate less. This means getting things done immediately when they come up. I have a tendency to put things off until I get slammed, and then end up having to do a million things at once. This makes me feel like I don’t do any of them as well as I could! What are your goals for 2018?

As always, your feedback is beyond important to me. What would YOU like to see from L&L as it evolves this next year? Are you interested in music? Do you want home decor features? I’m so excited to see what the future holds for this amazing community that has brought me so much joy. I’m so thankful for all the love and support that exists in this amazing group of women. You are all so positive, kind, encouraging, relatable, and lovely. It is so fun to make friends all over the world through this blog and my instagram account. Being connected with you all and hearing your ideas and solutions to things I’m dealing with as well makes me so happy.

I hope this helps some of you! I’m definitely working on all of this. I’d love to hear what works for you. Happy Monday.

I also linked a bunch of FITNESS GEAR to kick off 2018

Better YOU POSTS 2017

TRADER JOES HEALTHY FAVORITES

TRADER JOES – PALEO STYLE FAVORTIES

When is correct age for BOTOX & FILLERS 

ARM WORKOUT

PROTEIN PANCAKES

CARDIO SANDWICH

MARRIAGE COMMITMENT

FRUIT INFUSED WATER – drink more water!

TOUR MY FRIDGE

ADDING COLLAGEN TO YOUR LIFE

7 WAYS TO EAT HEALTHY ON A BUDGET

I also linked a bunch of FITNESS GEAR to kick off 2018

Sweats by WILDFOX | SUNGLASSES $55

XX

Jenna

9 responses to “time for YOU / 2018”

  1. Loved this post today Jenna!! I think I might have been one of your first followers.

  2. robin says:

    love your posts Jenna! gives me something to look forward to on social media!!!

  3. Laurel says:

    What is the promo code for 20% off the fitness program?

  4. Amanda Egan says:

    All amazing. Loved reading this and thinking about how these areas apply to my life. Can’t wait for this year!

  5. Beth says:

    Love this and so excited to see where the blog heads in 2018! Xx

  6. Sarah says:

    This post really hit me! Thank you for all the encouragement and details. I know it takes you a lot of time to share all this— and I so appreciate it! You’re so open and after reading this I’m excited for 2018! And excited to continue to follow you on your blogging journey!

  7. Abby says:

    Hi Jenna! I love your blog and look forward to reading every day. Question for you. You mentioned that you eat rice (I’m assuming it’s brown rice) at dinner every night. For some like me who is in good shape but want to really tone up this year, is that ok to do? I’ve always been taught to stay about from starches after 3. You look amazing so I thought I would reach out to you for your input! Hope you had a great holiday!

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