how to shop healthy on a budget | #thebeautybalance

I’ve been diving right into this 31 Day Writing Challenge, where each blogger chooses a topic to write about for 31(ish) days. Because it’s right where God has me, I’ve chosen to share on Blending Beauty with Balance.
(#thebeautybalance, if you want to follow along…or better yet, join the conversation using the hashtag!)

It’ll be a fun and encouraging 31(ish) days where I’ll be sharing tips and tricks while digging deeper, finding purpose, and blending beauty with balance — all with a heart of intention. {all 31(ish) Days will be linked here

How to shop healthy on a budget

Over the last few years I have really made a concentrated effort to switch as many of our household and beauty products over to things that are safer and more natural, and when I discovered Vitacost, that switch became a much easier task.

{I don’t work for or am I sponsored by Vitacost…although…at this point, I certainly wouldn’t mind that gig!}

vitacost

Every month, (I’ve had to limit myself!) I excitedly curl up on the couch with my laptop and indulge in a little online shopping therapy session. I absolutely love taking my time to look up new and interesting products, read through all the ingredients, research ones I don’t know, as well as read up on all the reviews before making my decision.

I have a wish list about a mile long, and I love having the confidence that I am doing everything I can to make the best choices for both my family and me.

That said….I should confess that I strongly believe in the 80/20 rule when it comes to most things…so not every decision we make is the healthiest one. I believe it really is all about finding a healthy balance for you, and this rule just works perfectly for us. It still provides some amount of structure, but allows grace for the moments we need to let loose.

So while nearly all of our bath, shower and skin care products have been switched over, I still have quite a ways to go when it comes to makeup. One day, maybe, one day.

And because I think being aware of what we put into our bodies is so important, I want to take the time to share each month what I’ve found and ordered for my own family through Vitacost. My hope is that I can get you just as excited about making these little changes all while saving money in the process!

 

Always first shop Vitacost through Ebates, Extrabux, or Top Cash Back to earn extra cash back off every order! I check them all first to see which is offering more cash back.

* Vitacost (earn $10 when you sign up!)
* Ebates (earn $5 when you sign up with this link)
* Extrabux (earn $5 when you sign up with this link)
* TopCashBack (earn $10 when you sign up with this link)

Have you already made the switch? Or maybe you’re in the process just as we are? If so, let me know what you’ve been using and loving as well! So many of my favorite things have been recommended by you guys! xo

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best of beauty. health. life | september 2014 | #thebeautybalance

I’ve been diving right into this 31 Day Writing Challenge, where each blogger chooses a topic to write about for 31(ish) days. Because it’s right where God has me, I’ve chosen to share on Blending Beauty with Balance.
(#thebeautybalance, if you want to follow along…or better yet, join the conversation using the hashtag!)

It’ll be a fun and encouraging 31(ish) days where I’ll be sharing tips and tricks while digging deeper, finding purpose, and blending beauty with balance — all with a heart of intention. {all 31(ish) Days will be linked here}

 

Best of Beauty. Life. Health.

At the end of every month both here and on my YouTube channel, I switch from sharing my top 5 weekly beauty favorites, to instead sharing all the things throughout my month that I truly loved the most. They are the things that I found I’ve excitedly texted my bff’s and sisters about, which are — of course — the things I’d want to share with all of you if we were having our own girls night out (or in!).

Beauty chat is fun, but from my experience real girl time always involves a random mix of what we’ve discovered and gone through, which is exactly why I try to find that same balance here and on my channel.

Screen Shot 2014-10-02 at 3.50.42 PM

This month I am extra excited because my BFF, Becky, is joining in on the fun…which for me is my most favorite thing of all for the month! Her friendship in my life is an absolute gift straight from the hands of Jesus, and it honestly doesn’t matter what we’re doing or what we’re talking about, there is just a total comfort and acceptance and always always laughter.

A balanced beautiful friendship. {I think I could really get carried away with this whole “beauty balance” thing! ha!}

I hope you guys enjoy this months video, and more importantly I hope you feel that we are right there with you just hanging out for girl time, bonding and sharing…Because it’s always so much more fun when you’re not alone!*

*except for when you’ve been around kids all day long…then being alone doesn’t sound so bad… Again. All about balance, my friends.

Monthly Favorites:
NYX Butter Lipgloss
Tarte Palette
Andalou Naturals Rosewater Mask
Larabars
Kayla Itsines – Bikini Body Challenge
The Core (book)
Robert Lustig
Blacklist (tv show)

What did you guys love most this last month???

I would so love to hear or see what you guys loved most this last month as well, so I invite you to either share by leaving a comment here or on YouTube OR you could always post a picture on any of your social media platforms using the tag #thebeautybalance!

 

+ DISCLAIMER +
FTC: This is not a sponsored video. While some products have been sent to me, I will always share my honest opinion of everything that I try and review on my channel. I will never accept payment in exchange for a positive review. Some links above may be affiliate.
________________

While I LOVE beauty, health, and all things related, more than anything my heart and soul belongs to Jesus! This quote expresses exactly what I hope shines more than anything:

“Like Paul and every other believer, my life is no longer my own. The focus must not be on me, but on Christ. When someone hears from me publicly, I want it all to point to Him.”

{quote from John MacArthur}

xoxo, Summer

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blending beauty with balance | #thebeautybalance

The beauty balance really all started with this:

“Consistency breeds Credibility.”

This is one of those quotes that sits with me often and settles into my mind while I attempt to blend some balance throughout my life.

There is so much I want to do and so many things I long to be, and yet when I strive to take them all on at once I lose my balance and fall short in nearly every area.

There is no consistency, no credibility, no balance…which ultimately leaves behind a bitter taste of feeling unconnected.

Consistency.
Credibility.
Connectedness.

And it is these three C’s tumbling around in my mind that have led me to this 31 day writing challenge hosted by The Nester (who you will love).

It’s where God has me.
And it’s what God is laying on my heart to be and to share.

And so I’m committing to be present here and purposeful in my writing and content, prayerfully choosing to share for 31(ish) days on Blending Beauty with Balance.

Brushes for makeup on pink background

As I shared the other day, it’s true that I love beauty, style, and fashion…I mean, I just experience such a giddy joy in finding a fabulous shade of lipstick. And yet, even though that may be a lot of the content both here and on my YouTube channel, what brings an even greater joy to my soul, is living that beauty, and knowing that the beauty we delight in is truly a reflection of our Creator.

It’ll be a fun and encouraging 31 days….sharing tips and tricks, while digging deeper, finding purpose, and blending beauty with balance — all with a heart of intention.

I hope you’ll come back each day and join along in #thebeautybalance conversation, and I’ll be sure to link each post back to this page, so that there will be a landing spot for all of the 31(ish) posts.

And of course…to make it even easier to follow along, I encourage you to subscribe to my blog so you’ll never miss an update!

Day 2: The monthly beauty box balance | Beauty Box 5
Day 3: Best of Life. Health. Beauty | Girl Chat
Day 4: Saldana Fam Cam: My inner struggles with comparison
Day 5: The work at home, stay at home, mom balance
Day 6: Be still
Day 7: How to shop healthy on a budget
Day 8: Adorned from the inside out
Day 9: Top 5 Weekly Beauty Faves
Day 10: Saldana Fam Cam: Sprouts Grocery Haul & The Best Smoothie Ever
Day 11: Bulu Health & Weight Loss Box
Day 12: The Comparison Cure
Day 13: How to straighten hair with minimum damage
Day 14: Yay or Nay? Reviews on the products I’ve used up!
Day 15: Saldana Fam Cam: Healthy Grocery Hauls & a New Family Member
Day 16: Summer’s Lovin’: Top 5 Beauty Favorites of the Week
Day 17: Saldana Fam Cam: Whole Foods Haul, Kayla Itsines & Funny Yoga
Day 18: The Greatest Beauty Truths We Can Ever Know
Day 19: Erin Condren Life Planner vs. Whitney English Day Designer
Day 20: We Are His Poem, We Are His Masterpiece: A Pastors Perspective
Day 21: Makeup Totally Worth Buying

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summers lovin’ | august 2014 health, fitness & beauty faves

Because I’ve started doing my top 5 beauty faves nearly every week, I decided that my monthly favorites would be just a little bit different.

Screen Shot 2014-09-04 at 10.54.45 AM

While I’ll still include a few beauty things, I’ll also be sharing all my favorites from the month including life stuff, books, tv shows, health, fitness, fashion, and anything else that I’m excited about sharing with you guys! Hopefully, by doing making this little change, it’ll bring more of a well rounded approach to what I share.

What I loved this month:

Tinkle Razors: Yes I shave my face, and you should as well, trust me.
Cover FX Liquid Foundation Brush: Perfect for any foundation, but especially heavier/thicker ones like Tarte Amazonian Clay
Michael Todd Jojoba Charcoal Facial Scrub (20% discount through link): A very mild scrub that works to remove dead skin and draw out impurities. i love this stuff!
Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser Treatment/Concealer: An incredible under eye concealer and brightener for such an affordable price. And it will last you forever!
Book: Where’d ya go, Bernadette?: This book ignited my love for reading again, and now I can’t wait to start my next one! Let me know what books you love most, fiction or non fiction so I can add it to my list!
Waiakea Water: Never have I loved a water more! Who knew water could have so many added benefits & give back at the same time? Love this stuff.
HIIT & Tabata workouts (just a few i love): These workouts are a total game changer. Ever since I added in more to my workouts, I have seen an incredible change in my body. The areas that are a lot more stubborn are seeming to wake up, and I’m starting to see change, where I haven’t before. They will totally kick your butt, but I promise it is so worth it! Here are just a few links to ones I love, but if you have other ones you think I should try, let me know!
Traci Campoli
Fitness Blender
XHit
Suzanne Bowen Streaming workouts

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And then also…just in case you missed last weeks top 5 beauty faves, here they are!

bestinbeautythumbnail

Weekly Favorites!

Josie Maran Argan Illuminator
Stila Antiqued Black Gold Eyeshadow
City Cosmetics Eyelash Enhancer
City Cosmetics Liquid Lipsticks
Schick Hydro Razor

What about you guys?
What did you guys love most in August?

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saldana fam cam: beautycon la 2014, dance party & more

We’re coming up on the last weeks of summer and I have this itch more than ever to get outside, be active and soak up each and every moment of free time that we have. It’s crazy to me that in just two more weeks BOTH my kids will officially be in school…no more babies in our house!

Screen Shot 2014-08-16 at 11.37.16 PM

This week on the Saldana Fam Cam:

  • This last week my sweet friend, Becky, offered to take our kids for the day so that Jimmy and I could have our first date in 6 months. I didn’t even realize that we had let that much time pass, but once we had the time together again, it hit me just how much we need to make time for that in our marriage. Having uninterrupted time together when you’re not exhausted at the end of the day really makes a difference. But that’s a whole blog post that I’m thinking I might need to write sometime soon. Anyway, we made the most of our day and went grocery shopping without kids (how easy is that?!?), came home to pay bills (no interruptions!), and then got changed and went to hike a few miles down to Torrey Pines Beach and then back up…finishing the night with dinner out at our favorite restaurant, Tender Greens. It was honestly the perfect day for both of us.
  • Another big event went down this week, and that was Taylor finally got his braces off. Hallelujah, Praise Jesus. Although, now we get to live this next year keeping a 9 year olds retainer in tact. So ya, that’s been fun.
  • As usual, there was a Saldana Fam dance party that went down randomly in our house. This actually happens quite often, but I made sure to capture each family members mad skills. You’ll notice I don’t, however, capture my own. One day.
  • We had a family fun night with some of our bestest friends, and Becky…who is supposed to be like me (allergic to cooking) had quite the surprise for us once we showed up to their house.
  • I picked up Chloe’s books for her first official year of homeschool! I’ve never taught Kindergarten before, but I have to admit that I am beyond excited for this little adventure we get to have together. I’ll be doing a homeschool video/blog post in the next couple weeks to share more in detail about what we’re using and how it’s going!
  • I may have also done a little shopping at Forever 21, though I did get out of there for under $15. So that’s kind of newsworthy, I think. ha
  • And lastly, I went up to L.A. on Saturday to attend BeautyCon LA 2014 with Trisha from A Glittery Life, and shared the makeup look & products I used to get ready. The event was INsane, but I’m definitely glad I went and loved the chance to meet with friends as well as try out some new brands to share with you guys! (more on the goodies I got tomorrow!)

* I’ve been trying to be more selective in the moments I vlog and share, so that I am able maintain some kind of balance with being in the moment vs. capturing the ones I want to be sure I remember… It’s a dance I’m learning slowly but surely. xo

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superfood smoothie recipes and essentials | living the 80/20 rule

I’ve talked a lot about how as a family we try to live by the 80/20 rule, where 80% of the time we do our best to choose healthier options but the other 20% of the time…we just don’t.

I have commitment issues, I guess.
But also, I like food and makeup and living on the edge…(but just a little).
So 80/20 works well for me.

Except for those times when the 80% is actually UNhealthy options…
But that’s usually just one week out of the month, if you know what I mean.

That said, I wanted to share just a snippet of a day where we really tried to do our best to live out that 80/20 rule when it came to our eating. We ate out most of the day, since it was our first date alone in 6 months, but considering we did a 3 mile hike I feel like our food choices were actually pretty good.

In addition to that, I wanted to share where I’m most considered a foodie in our house, and that’s in the area of smoothies.
I’m obsessed.
I love them like candy and could literally drink one for every meal of the day.
I don’t.
But I could.

greensmoothiewords

I’ll go through all this in the video and show you each and every essential and smoothie, but just in case you need a place of reference, let me share the details.

Okay, so first up, let’s talk about my Superfood Smoothie Essentials:

Vitamix | You guys, I have had a LOT of blenders in my life, and none have ever stolen my heart the way the Vitamix has. If you’re wondering if it’s worth the money, it is. Just go. Do it. You can thank me later.
Pinterest | This is where I really do get most of my recipe ideas for some of the tastiest smoothies I’ve made. And while you’re on there, make sure we’re following each other, will ya?

Dynamic Greens | This stuff is absolutely packed with a ton of superfood greens but the amazing thing is that it actually tastes really good! When I’m super lazy, I’ll just add it to a shaker cup of water and ice, and it still tastes so delicious.
Flaxseed | Fiber, Omega 3’s and even a dose of estrogen & antioxidants!
Chia Seeds | Fiber, Omega 3’s, Protein, B vitamins just to name a few, not to mention they’re incredibly filling.
Spirulina | Proteins, Amino Acids, Omega 3’s, Iron, and a ton ton ton of vitamins.
Maca Powder | Amino Acids, Vitamins B, C & E, Iron, Calcium, Zinc, Magnesium and so much more.

Cute Smoothie Mason Cups | You actually DO need these. Not only are they cute, but they keep your hands from getting cold while you’re holding the cup. Cute and practical, what more do you need?

Frozen Fruit | This is self explanatory, I think.
Frozen Kale or Spinach | Freeze your veggie too, so they stay fresh longer! And switch up your greens each time, but make sure to always add at least one handful to every smoothie. It adds so much nutrition without changing the taste!

Organic Juice (not from concentrate)
Coconut Water
Coconut or Almond Milk
Organic Kefir Yogurt

Protein Powder | At the moment I’m using and loving the Fast Fuel Complete by Lifetime Fitness. I order online with their Auto Ship option, so I get a discount. It’s a Dairy Free plant based protein with a fruit/vegetable blend, fiber, digestive enzymes and probiotics. Yum. I’m pretty picky about protein powders, and this one actually tastes pretty good to me. I mean, it’s still protein powder, but one of the yummier healthier options I’ve tried.

For most of my smoothie ingredients, especially the superfood add ons, I always shop through Vitacost because I really have found them to have the best prices.

* Always first shop Vitacost through Ebates, Extrabux, or Top Cash Back to earn extra cash back off every order! I check them all first to see which is offering more cash back.

Vitacost | (earn $10 when you sign up!)
Ebates | (earn $5 when you sign up with this link)
Extrabux | (earn $5 when you sign up with this link)
TopCashBack | (earn $10 when you sign up with this link)

Okay, now for those two Smoothie Recipes I make most often.

Post Workout Creamy Chocolate Banana Protein Smoothie 
1 cup unsweetened coconut milk (45 calories)
1 handful of ice
1 frozen banana
1 scoop of Dynamic Greens

Superfood Tropical Smoothie (for 2)
1 cup of organic apple juice (not from concentrate)
1 cup of organic kefir yogurt (strawberry, raspberry, acai or vanilla)
1.5 cups of frozen kale or spinach
1.5 cups frozen pineapple
.5 cup frozen mixed tropical fruit
.5 cup frozen organic strawberries
1 tbsp chia seeds
1 tsp maca powder

______________________

*this post contains affiliate links

 

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saldana fam cam: discontentment, jam session and balayage

This summer is going way too fast for me, and as I was just telling Jimmy the other night, it’s been far too busy as well.

I had such high hopes that summertime would bring us all rest and relaxation, and instead I feel busier than ever before. And while some of that is all me and some of the projects I’m taking on, it still feels too…rushed. I am desperately needing a second to gather my thoughts, center myself, and reflect on all thats truly important.

| This week on the Saldana Fam Cam |

Screen Shot 2014-08-09 at 10.28.41 PM

~ We had an insane heat wave hit our area with what felt like a deathly level of humidity accompanying it, and given that we don’t have air conditioning in our house, we were all a bit on the lethargic GRUMPY side. And so, of course, we ended up doing what any normal family without air conditioning does…we got in the car with dinner and a movie…and went for a long drive to look at dream houses. Wait till you see these crazy modern styled homes we discovered!

~ One thing this week that seemed to be a common theme for both Jimmy & me, was in the area of discontentment. Always striving for more but continually feeling as though it’s not enough… And so, one night after we got the kids to bed, we had a little heart to heart that really put things into perspective for the both us, I think. I have this feeling that we’re not the only ones living this struggle, especially in this generation of Facebook & Instagram where the grass is always greener and more manicured on the other side, and so I pulled out my camera and tried to capture the tail end of our discussion. Praying it speaks to you the way it did to me.

~ A bright side to my week was my beloved hair appt where we freshened up my balayage and actually went a little lighter in the front. I’m absolutely obsessed with this style of coloring hair now, that I’m pretty sure I can never go back to any other method. Unfortunately, the girl I’ve been going to is raising her prices and with our budget these days, I just can’t justify paying the increase. So now I’m on a mad (and desperate) sleepless hunt for a new Balayage Hair Master here in San Diego, and praying that someone around these parts can duplicate what’s already been done.

Yes, I realize this is all sorts of #firstworldproblems.

~ We also had the opportunity to attend the Ringling Bros. Barnum & Bailey Circus for the third year now, and absolutely loved it. I tried to capture my most favorite acts (that don’t involve animals, because I understand that’s a sensitive situation), that truly took our breath away. We all agreed that this particular show was our favorite so far!

~ And then of course there’s the beauty stuff, where I test out a new City Cosmetics Lip Plumper and show what makeup I’m wearing on the days I actually take the time to put some on. You also have got to watch the part where Chloe styled not only herself and Girafee for church, but then picked out my jewelry as well. She is just too adorable for words.

I hope you guys enjoy!!!

xo

{PS – I really am longing to get back to my writing posts as well, but am finding that it is incredibly difficult to form complete thoughts while the kids are home all summer. Babysitters or Grandparents would just be so lovely to have in my life, ya know? Anyway, so my prayer is that in the next couple weeks once we’re back on a schedule and school has started for Taylor, that my writing and thinking groove will get back on track. Bear with me!!! xo}

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how to heal a sunburn overnight | natural remedies

I’m ashamed to admit that this summer has been the summer of sunburns for me.

I shudder just typing that sentence…because I am such a freak about sunscreen and not being in the sun too long, and I am most definitely anti-cancer. (I think it’s safe to say we all are?)

But even with all the caution I usually apply, somehow I have still managed to get burned several times just in the last few months. Not cute. Not cute at all.

Thankfully though, some good always comes from the bad moments in my life, and this time it is that I have found a way to heal a sunburn overnight …Literally…and now I get to share this discovery with all of you. So I guess my pain is your gain.

What I go through to help others….

I’m not exaggerating when I say that within just minutes of applying this concoction, the pain and sting were gone, and it completely stopped hurting. I was still pretty red for another 24 hours or so, but never ended up peeling. And then thankfully it turned into a nice little tan a couple days later.

Screen shot 2014-08-01 at 9.31.30 PM

Okay, so here’s what you need:

  • Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar (anti-inflammatory)
  • Organic Cold Pressed Coconut Oil (this is a gift from Jesus)
  • Lavender Essential Oil (soothes, regenerates, and smells amazing)
  • Peppermint Essential Oil (soothes and cools)
  • Washcloth & water (application & dilution)

And here’s what I did…

If you guys try this, let me know how it works for you…although, I would just suggest not to get burned in the first place.

And make sure if you have your own natural remedies that have also worked wonders, to definitely share them in the comments below!

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quick and easy healthy snack recipes

I have been in full “get healthy & lose weight” mode these last few months, and I could never survive any kind of weight loss if I didn’t have some healthy and delicious snack options that were also quick and easy.

Because when we’re feeling hungry AND deprived, at least in this family, there is not a lot of preparation time allowed to happen. We want food and we want it now.

So, my friend Dani (stylebydani) and I got together to share with you guys 8 of our most delicious and healthy go to snacks. Whether it’s for weight loss, summertime, or just to get healthy over all, these quick and easy healthy snack recipes are sure to make your taste buds and your tummy (not to mention your mood) very happy.

Enjoy!

{Chocolate energy bites recipe}

And make sure to leave a comment if you have any ideas to share as well!!!

xo

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beauty hauls, weekly workouts, what we eat & smoothie recipes

Every Sunday from here on out, I am starting a new thing on my YouTube channel where I upload a vlog video from the week. My kids are growing so fast, and so much is happening in our life, that I don’t want to miss a thing. Plus, I love watching other people vlogs and getting little snapshots into their real life, and so I thought it would be fun to do something similar as well.

Some weeks may be more chit chat, some weeks more beauty, some more of what we’re eating and smoothie recipes, and some may have more of the kids & Jimmy than anything else. But each week I want to capture the essence of our life and interests so that we can always look back and see where we were at that time of our life.

I really hope you guys subscribe and join my family each week in all that do and love!

xo

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