Chatbooks {This Photog's FAV From-Your-Phone Photo Albums}

   I cannot stand commercials! I simultaneously watch two TV shows at a time so I can flip back and forth. In fact, I consider myself somewhat of an expert of this art form...

   I’ll be watching a show with my husband, and he’ll get so irritated with me – “Turn it back, we’re missing our show!” he’ll request.  “Nah…we’ve got another 30 seconds – at least…” I'll argue.

   And when I’m on YouTube my finger hovers over the Skip Ad button in the bottom right corner of the screen just anticipating the countdown…5, 4, 3 – and I’m already tapping the button. How annoying are the ads you can’t skip????

   So it is VERY rare that I find an advertisement I enjoy – and even more rare when said ad will convince me to purchase a product. So Congrats to Chatbooks for having the BEST, most effective commercial I’ve seen…possibly ever!

   Chatbooks is an App that keeps track of your Facebook, Instagram or Favorited photos on your phone and once you have 60 they create a photo album for you to tangibly hold and cherish.

   The commercial is so perfect because it might as well be a video of my life! I’m a busy mom who has a 100 percent success rate of FAILING at every Pinterest project I’ve ever attempted. I have out-of-control children (I’ve actually had to rescue one of my kids from the ledge of a window before.) And I NEVER print photos off my phone, which is where 99% of my pictures live these days.

   As much as I loved the commercial, and the concept and the price – as a professional photographer myself, I was a little leery of the quality. But I figured, at the price, even if they weren’t any good it wouldn’t be a huge loss. You guys, these books at GREAT! I opted for the hard covers for some added protection from my kids, and they have held up. The photos transferred to the paper well, and are vibrant and crystal clear.

 

Chapbooks takes your Favorited images off your Camera, Facebook or Instagram account - and creates beautiful albums to cherish forever! If you don't want a personal photo cover, they have adorable seasonal and themed covers to choose from! As you can tell next to my phone above, these books aren't huge (the softcovers are 6x6-inch squares and the hardcovers are 6.25x6.25-inch squares) but they aren't too small. They are the perfect size for coffee tables or bookcases.

Chapbooks takes your Favorited images off your Camera, Facebook or Instagram account - and creates beautiful albums to cherish forever! If you don't want a personal photo cover, they have adorable seasonal and themed covers to choose from! As you can tell next to my phone above, these books aren't huge (the softcovers are 6x6-inch squares and the hardcovers are 6.25x6.25-inch squares) but they aren't too small. They are the perfect size for coffee tables or bookcases.

You have the option of a hardcover book, which is a MUST with my kiddos...And you can personalize the spins :)

You have the option of a hardcover book, which is a MUST with my kiddos...And you can personalize the spins :)

   As a professional, I’d kindda wished I could have formatted some of the pages – even though I too want to beat a hammer against my computer sometimes – but I ended up loving the clean design of one image per page. And the App gives you the option of editing your books before they’re ordered!

   So, check them out at chatbooks.com or find them in the App Store

 

I love the clean design of one image per page! You can add captions below the image / utilize the descriptions from social media. I wish I could have reorganized the order of my images (I wanted to have books for each season and seemed to have a Spring photo that wanted to sneak into my Winter album), but you can add or delete photos.

I love the clean design of one image per page! You can add captions below the image / utilize the descriptions from social media. I wish I could have reorganized the order of my images (I wanted to have books for each season and seemed to have a Spring photo that wanted to sneak into my Winter album), but you can add or delete photos.

PALEO WAFFLE Recipe {Paleo Waffles}

This year I made a conscious effort to live a healthier lifestyle. This has nothing to do with getting ready for 'bikini season' (let's be honest, after having twins that ship has sailed...) No, this decision was about trying to feel better - mind, body and soul.

Now, please don't think I'm up here on my soapbox... I FAIL miserably at this endeavor ALL THE TIME! Because it's hard to live a 2017 lifestyle, at a 2017 speed, without finding yourself in a McDonald's drive-thru... or Wendy's... or KFC... You get the idea.

And while I was making healthier choices for myself, it took a minor health scare with one of my twins to make me realize I wasn't making healthy choices for my children. While I was eating a salad, I was letting my girls eat chicken nuggets and fries. There's nothing wrong with that in moderation, but it is a problem when your children think that's the only thing they should ever have to eat.

So I've been trying to make this a family-wide, lifestyle change. And I have to say, my girls have been troopers! They don't complain about drinking water instead of juice, they actually like salad, and pretty much any vegetable is delicious when drizzled with olive oil, sprinkled with sea salt and roasted!!!!

On my twins' last birthday I told them I would fix them anything they wanted for breakfast. When they requested waffles, I used it as a great opportunity to make Paleo Waffles.

Now, I don't claim to be a Paleo expert by any means...but what I do know (and love) about this food lifestyle (I HATE the word diet) is that it's basic principle is that you only eat items that would have been eaten during the Paleo era (think cave men.) So no processed foods, no dairy, no sugar. It sounds terrible, right? Well, I PROMISE you it's not! Is it challenging? Yes. Does it require planning? Absolutely! Does it make you feel better? 100 PERCENT!!!!

The main question you might have about how you make waffles without flour is; What do you use to replace the flour? The answer is one of the most AMAZING inventions EVER...Almond Flour.

This miracle in a bag's only ingredient is blanched almonds! A serving only has 6 grams of carbohydrates (2% of the daily value), 1 gram of sugar and NO sodium! How AWESOME is that? You're probably thinking, 'I bet it tastes HORRIBLE!' It may not taste like the waffles you're use to eating, but it is still delicious! Would these faces lie?

So here's the recipe! Give it a try and let me know what you think in the comments below.

Paleo Waffles

  • 1 cup blanched almond flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 eggs (Vegans could use a vegan egg substitute)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 tablespoon honey (Vegans could use molasses or agave nectar)
  • 1 tablespoon coconut oil (used to grease the waffle maker)

Combine all dry ingredients in a large bowl. Beat eggs, vanilla and honey in a smaller bowl & mix with the dry ingredients. (Note that the consistency will be a little different than you're used to because of the almond flour...Our batter looked similar to applesauce.) Plug in your waffle maker and coat with melted coconut oil (I used a marinating brush.) Pour a 1/4 cup of batter on each griddle and close the lid. Do NOT let your waffles cook the whole time your waffle maker thinks they should. The almond flour cooks quickly, so check them about half-way through the cooking cycle. Top with butter and maple syrup & ENJOY!!!!

Whey Protein Orange Creamsicle Recipe

It’s OFFICIAL… The marathon is right around the corner! We’re now counting down in days instead of weeks, which is a exciting & terrifying thought!

At last night’s training run I heard two common themes being discussed – 1) The weather forecast for race day 2) The fear of/avoidance of getting sick.

Lucky for me (as I knock on wood), I got that out of my system over the last two weeks while I was running a 24-hour infirmary for my three, very sick, little girls.

I hate to disgust you with the details… so let me just say that there were very few surfaces in my home that were not thrown-up on over the last few weeks. And while I’m usually pretty good dealing with this kind of stuff, I was in NO position to get sick myself!!!! So I’ve been a Lysol spraying, Clorox wiping, sheet washing, hand-sanitizing FREAK!!!!

I also started drinking a vitamin C supplement I found at the grocery called Emergen-C. I usually gag at the taste of these powdery mixes, but I added it to my hot lemon and honey water in the morning and it was not too bad.

But last Tuesday I came home from a training run knowing I needed to replenish my muscles with a protein shake, so I had a crazy idea to mix the two together.

This is either going to be the most delicious or disgusting thing I’ve ever tried, I thought. Fortunately, it was heaven in a glass. It tasted just like the orange creamsicle pops I loved as a kid – except WAY healthier. So I thought I’d share:

RECIPE:

  • One scoop Vanilla Protein Powder (UMP is a whey protein, but could be substituted for a vegan protein)
  • One packet Emergen-C 
  • 10-12 oz. water 
  • Ice
  • Mix them all together in your shake cup or blender and ENJOY! It tastes just like an Orange Creamsicle!