Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Opportunity Knocks

With my job, I have many opportunities to speak to students and young adults on some of the most vital aspects of life.  Today, one of these opportunities occurred where I was faced with a handful of aspiring 17 year olds who may have or may not have been thrilled to receive these keys to success.  I remember when I was 17, I didn't necessarily take every opportunity that was given to me nor did I fully appreciate the ones that were simply handed to me without having to work for them.  I was lucky.  Now, I realize that life is full of chances.  No matter what cards we are dealt, no matter how difficult our lives may seem compared to others, one thing is constant for every single person.  Opportunities. We are all given them, but we have the choice as to wether we take them or leave them.  This was the main objective of my talk today.  I told the students that in life, we are given chances, but we may not always have a second chance, so you must make the most of the ones that come your way and thank the Lord for the opportunities that have already been handed to you. 

Not only is it good for my soul to try to impact these kids, but it's also so good for my own heart to remind myself of these things.  I look at my life and realize how unbelievably blessed I am.  I never want to take that for granted or ever come across ungrateful.  For you see, in life there are many situations that we have control over, but the only aspect that we can control is the way we choose to feel about the situation.  I will always choose humility, gratefulness, and joy! 

What will you choose?

On that note, let's unfold the day because there is much to talk about. 

Breakfast bowl (a true favorite).

 Apple Blackberry Vanilla Bowl 

  • 1/4 C Kashi Go Lean Crunch
  • 1/4 C Kashi Harvest 
  • 1/3 Green Apple (chopped)
  • a few HUGE Blackberries
  • 1/4 C Natural Applesauce
  • 2 TBL Vanilla Choabni
  • 2 TBL Natures Path Peanut Butter Granola (This stuff is so good!  It will not last long)
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon Raisin PB
  • 1 tsp Flax
A reader asked me a question about why I measure out my breakfast and use such a small amount of flax and chia and other sound nutrients.  Well, the truth is, breakfast is the ONLY meal that I measure out only because I have no control over cereal.  I am sure that "my portions" are probably way more than the actual weighed amounts, but if I don't have some kind of general basis, I would be overflowing my bowls and stuffing every single last bite down.  Not good for my stomach.  Also, due to my digestive issues, I can only tolerate soluble fiber (like flax and chia) in small amounts. I am getting SOOO much fiber throughout my day in all other forms.  (Hello, do you see how much fruits and veggies I eat?)  So I need some limits with breakfast in order to get through the entire day. 

With Iced Coffee and Organic Strawberries

At work this morning, I had some fun with my coworkers playing with the "make me beautiful" setting on the camera. (This is not really what this setting is called, but I found the right to give this awesome setting its own name) 

They found no problem posing. 



Not bad!  But I think the real effort was given by this dashing stud who literally positioned himself in the most appealing manor as soon as I pulled out the camera. 

No extra work needed from the camera here.  He is already beautiful! 

I had such a busy day, but like I mentioned earlier, my job is awesome so I can never complain.  I did have about 20 minutes in between appointments today, to enjoy lunch. 

After my first presentation, I ventured to a nearby lake which was the best idea I had all day. 

I found myself a perfect bench located under a bill weeping willow tree and took a few minutes to fully enjoy the beautiful day.

Last night, I packed my lunch, knowing it would have to be eaten in route. 

Smoked Salmon on Bagel Thin with LC Blue Cheese, Apple, Cranberry Chutney and Greens

Squash Sticks with Hummus and Cherries

This was a fantastic lunch all around.  The lake, the ducks, the food.  I wish it could have been longer. 

After a long day, I got home and immediately perked up when I saw I had a big package waiting for me. 

I knew exactly what it was….

Last week, I went a little shoe crazy and ordered 3 pairs in anticipation for Vegas. 

Shoe # 1

Shoe # 2

Shoe # 3

Yeah, it started out with the innocent purchase one a single pair, but then I saw that you could get free shipping if you spent $50.  Since the cost of shipping wasn't much more than 2 more pairs, I thought it was a good deal. So I got all 3 pairs for $50, no shipping fee! Pretty good! 

I immediately tried on all of my new shoes put them in the suitcase for Vegas and started dinner. 

Wednesday Night BFD! 

For BFD, I made breakfast bowls.  We have not had these in so long.  I've been so stuck on egg sammies lately that I almost forgot about all of the other wonderful BFD recipes I have. 

Butternut Squash, Zucchini, Apple, in Balsamic and Maple Dijon Sauce with Dried Cranberries and Goat Cheese over Spinach topped with over easy farm fresh egg

With a slice of Cinnamon Raisin Ezikel Bread

Truly superb! 

Oh, one last thing.  I finally was able to pick up a new book I've been so anxious to read.

I am beside myself with excitement to see the movie, but I really want to read the book first.  With some travel time and vacation ahead of me, I hope to finish it before the movie comes out. 

Okay, that was quite a lot for today.  If you stuck it out, I do thank you! :) 

Have a great night and remember, stay happy, healthy and always full of love! 



  1. 3 pairs for $50? What a steal. Those 3 together are like 1/8th the cost of Carrie Bradshaw's shoes so don't feel guilty/bad!

  2. Your job is totally SO cool! I bet you have a bigger impact on those kids than you can imagine. Glad you got to enjoy your lunch in such a beautiful setting and I love shoe number 1 ! Can't wait to see the outfit you wear with it.

  3. I LOVE BFD! Pancakes are all all time fave ;)

  4. I want to read that book too! The trailers for that movie all look so cool! :D It sounds inspirational. Like you! I think you found your calling Lauren :) Inspiring people I think comes naturally to you, and you have such a huge heart. I love you so much for this. I also love you for being smart and getting three pair for a great price and free shipping!!! They are all so cute, and I especially like the first one a lot!

    Your BFD sounds sooo good. The cinnamon raisin toast--craving! lol.


    p.s. SAMMY!!! Ahhh he is too freaking cute.

  5. cutest puppy everrrrrrrrrrrr!

    and i ADORED THAT BOOK! can't wait for the movie either!!

  6. do those bagel thins taste like real Bagels? .... not to doughy?
    cute shoes by the way

  7. Thank you so much for your lovely sentiments. It's so true, we have so many choices in life. Why not choose happiness?

    And where did you find such cute shoes for so cheap? I need to find that store ASAP!

  8. Sooooooo your job is awesome. And the message about all of us having opportunities, but it's up to us to take them - dead on. I want to take some time today to evaluate the opportunities in my life right now, and make some decisions about how I am going to fully appreciate and puruse all that I have been given. Great inspiration, girl! :)

  9. I love Eat Pray Love! I'm so excitedfor the movie! (And I love those shoes! You're going to have so much fun in Vegas!)
    Your job sounds great. I always try to take advantage of every opportunity that I am given, but it's nice to be reminded

  10. Lauren, this is why I admire you so much. I LOVED what you said here:

    " ... in life there are many situations that we have control over, but the only aspect that we can control is the way we choose to feel about the situation. I will always choose humility, gratefulness, and joy! "

    I choose that too! Though sometimes, it IS hard! But I can see that you are blessing people with your job and your wisdom and grace...that's amazing!

  11. 1) Great post!
    2) Great Shoes
    3) Can't wait to see that movie!