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I’m often asked what’s the best thing to eat for breakfast, what brand of yogurt is the best and even what kind of bread is the best.

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What do you do when you’re stuck inside because of the weather or you just need to be home all day?

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I know it may sound silly, but have you ever had muffins stick to the muffin tins or to the paper liners? I have!

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Zen is a way of being, a state of mind.

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Are you finding yourself a little bored of eating the same salad?

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Last weekend we had a family celebration for my mom’s birthday. We ordered a ton of food and had yummy desserts, but we still needed some appetizers. I mean, what’s a party without appetizers??

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I like to add a cut up baked apple on top with a sprinkle of cinnamon!

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I do!! These don’t look like your average flowers, do they? But to me, they are beautiful and colorful.

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One of my favorite places in my kitchen is the cupboard where I keep my spices. I know, it sounds boring, but so many really good meals and ideas have come from just changing up my spices!

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Sounds easy enough doesn’t it, but we all know it isn’t always easy and our best intentions can often go awry!

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Trying to eat healthy under normal circumstances can be difficult, so why should Passover, or any other holiday or celebration, be any different?

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I am definitely a list person. I keep past Seder menus and work from those to create a new menu – or at least I try to deviate just a little bit!

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Whether your goal is to eat healthier, lose weight or just maintain, one of the best pieces of advice I give to the clients I work with is to plan for extras!

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While growing up my mother (sorry to call you out on this mommy!) rarely bought ‘cookies, candy or junk’. Thank God my father had a sweet tooth and would sneak things like cake into our house, which was devoured that night in a matter of minutes!

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Here’s a recipe that you don’t have to turn on your oven or chop up any veggies for! And I promise you that you can’t under cook it or burn it either!

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Be Curious. Be Grateful. Those were the inspiring words that were said by Pam, the teacher, during a yoga class that I took yesterday morning. A yoga studio that is still new to me.

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‘Tis the season for crock pots!! So tell me, have you taken yours out yet?

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As far as I’m concerned, the weekend begins on Friday and that’s when I start figuring out my weekend activities. Activities = Food Prep!

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I find that if I don’t do any food prep, I’ll eat whatever is easy and available.

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When the days are dark and it looks pretty bleak outside, salad is the last thing that I want to eat.

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I love yoga, hot yoga in particular. Some of you may know that I practice 6-7 times a week, but when I’m on vacation it’s a little more challenging to keep this up.

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The year is coming to an end and it’s time to start a new one with new possibilities. What will 2017 mean for you?

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Holiday anticipation makes many of us anxious. Party plans, big dinners, family drama (sometimes!), who to invite, what to serve, will there be enough, food temptations, indulgences that make us feel guilty – it could drive you crazy!

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Bread seems to be the enemy and is constantly blamed for weight gain! But is it really the bread’s fault?

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My daughter Tamara bought me this beautiful mug for Mother’s Day a few years ago. It always makes me laugh and brings a smile to my face as I reminisce when my kids were young, and yes, sometimes (more often than not!) we did have cake for breakfast!

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Do you use mini muffin baking tins?? I love them and let me tell you why!

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I do too, but you would never know it because it’s rare that I eat it. Could it be because 1 portion is ONLY 1/2 cup??? Is that why you don’t enjoy more of it too?

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There always seems to be so much to do and so many things going on in my life, I often feel like I’m being pulled in a zillion different directions. Do you ever feel like that?

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I love Friday night dinners because my dining room table has lots of faces around it:) Our supper meals are usually the same – a huge green salad, a new ‘healthy recipe’ that I’m trying out, a chicken dish, salmon (or another fish) and roasted potatoes.

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Balance is the key to life. Without sounding too philosophical, this holds so much truth and we can all use a little reminding of how important this is for our own well being.

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The leaves have changed colors and there’s a chill in the air. You know what that means, don’t you? When the weather gets like this, I say “It’s time for soup!”

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Fall is beautiful and I just love seeing the trees bursting with shades of reds and oranges. But, along with this beauty the sun is setting earlier and the mornings are really dark. Is it just me or do you find with the change of seasons that you’re a little hungrier and constantly in the kitchen?

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Have you noticed that there are huge bins of pomegranates in the fruit and vegetable section of your favorite grocery store? Have you bought any? I have and bought two of them which are now staring at me every time I open my fridge door.

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I use butternut squash all year round and at this time of the year, I usually buy one every other week!

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I love the weather in September – it’s not too hot, not too cold, it’s just right! And what a great opportunity to take yourself outdoors and go for a walk!

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Last week while at an outdoor market, I saw this beautiful bouquet of greens. They looked so delicate and fresh, not at all like the baby bok choy that I was used to buying at my local grocery store!

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I love trying new grains but I did have trouble finding freekeh because it’s not always sold by this name!

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I didn’t! It’s a daikon radish and although I’ve seen it in grocery stores, I have never ever paid any attention to it nor have I even given it a second thought. That is, until I had it in a salad!

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A salad is not always just a salad! If you want a change of pace and don’t want to see another bowl filled with various lettuces, tomatoes and cucumbers, experiment and try something new.

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Are you bored of BBQ’s yet? I’m not! But I could see how easy you can be if you have the same thing over and over again.

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I am and not that it’s a bad thing, but how much is too much?

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Do you like tuna? What about cottage cheese?

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The other night it was just Mark and I home for supper and we were trying to decide what to eat. Do you ever get in a mood where you have no clue what you want? Me too!

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I love when the weather changes because there’s always new crops growing and I look forward to the different assortment of fresh produce available. I always try to shop in season – do you? I see such a big difference in many of my side dishes because of the different choices available:)

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Do you ever hear the words ‘There’s nothing to eat!’ or have you said them yourself? And when you open your fridge door, and close it, and then open it again and still see nothing appealing, what do you take instead?? A handful of chips? Or maybe a handful of chocolate chips!

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In the Summer the grocery stores and markets are bursting with colorful fruits and veggies. Although it’s so inspiring, I tend to get lazy at times and really have to push myself to create new salads etc. Do you ever feel like that?

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I am talking about WATER, not wine! Now that you have a smile on your face, answer honestly, are you drinking enough water?

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Is there something that you keep putting off, giving yourself excuses that it’s ‘not a good time’, your kids are too young, you’re not ‘settled’, you’re not where you want to be, your body isn’t where you want it to be…I can go on and on with the excuses. And we are ALL guilty of putting things on the back burner because of our excuses.

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Now that we’re in Spring/Summer mode, do you find yourself putting off things that you said that you were going to do just as soon as the weather started getting nicer?? I have those ‘mental checklists’ of things that I want to do… Should I tell you how embarrassed I am that I still have long sleeved sweater dresses in my bedroom cupboard!!!

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#1 My all time favorite food is ice cream, cheesecake is a close 2nd.

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This morning as I was having breakfast with my friend Ilana (thanks again for a delicious breakfast!) she showed me something that she recently bought at Costco and asked if I tried it yet.

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It’s so nice to see all the begonias and flowering plants brighten up the grocery stores, the markets – even Costco has their full garden assortment ready for the taking. While those hanging baskets are so tempting to buy, I know the weather isn’t consistent yet and those little flowering buds may not survive our unpredictable weather. I am so ready to plant my herbs outdoors too, but I know I have to wait.

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There was a time in my life when breakfast meant a quick cup of coffee and a ‘bar’ to go, or just the coffee. It’s crazy how priorities change and seriously, I think I need my breakfast more than any other meal of the day!

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The tag team of my brother and sister in law grilled butternut squash, red and orange peppers, zucchini and eggplant for my 2nd Seder, and there were the leftovers that were tucked away in the back of my fridge that were almost forgotten!

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We shared two beautiful Seders with wonderful family and friends and I can’t believe how much work went into those two nights and it’s over, just like that! My house is starting to get back to normal and now I’m trying to plan what to eat for the next few days. My family is okay with leftovers for one day, but to be honest, I feel so stuffed and really need to get back to eating ‘healthy’! If you are observing Passover, you must be faced with the same challenges that I am!

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In my quest of trying to be super organized and trying to be ahead of myself for everything that involves Passover, I have learned that patience is probably the #1 thing that you need. Although my family would beg to differ and swear it’s the brisket or turkey stuffing or apple cake, for me it’s definitely patience!

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There’s 2 weeks left until the first night of Passover. Is your house upside down yet, like mine?

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I love yoga and practice it regularly at the Moksha Studio in NDG. Today starts the 30 Day Moksha Challenge where you set an intention to practice yoga consecutively for 30 days. And it’s ok if you don’t go everyday – the idea is to challenge yourself and you can set your own intention.

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Do you hit the snooze button one more time, wake up late and just skip breakfast? Or do you just grab a cup of coffee and run out the door? Maybe you stop at your favorite coffee shop and pick up a coffee and a little ‘treat’?

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Time flies! It’s been 2 years since I started this blog and I want to thank everyone who has taken the time to like and share my page. At that time I had just quit a job that I held dear to me for 7 years and people I knew from there were emailing me and wanting to keep in touch. In fact, it was my son Mark who said that I should have a Facebook page so people would have an easier time to connect with me. Before I could think of a zillion excuses of why not to do this, he signed me up and Shari Creates was born. Who knew that it would grow to 800+ people on this venue!!

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I get it – when you come home from the grocery store you’re exhausted and just want to put everything away because you have other things to do. 10 minutes. That’s all it took for me to peel a 5 pound bag of carrots and then another 10 – 15 minutes to cut them up and put them in a clear container. The next step is crucial if you are trying to establish a new habit. Place the container front and center on your fridge shelf because out of sight, out of mind!

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Our dinner table is always set family style – most nights there’s a large plate of chicken, salmon, a quinoa salad, a bowl of rice or roasted potatoes and always a huge bowl of salad. Try and imagine the plates being passed around at my house and everyone is helping themselves and there’s a lot of chitter chatter going on.

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And now it doesn’t! I had such good intentions when I bought it a few days ago. I forgot to use it and when I opened up my fridge wanting to cut it into florets for my salad, the broccoli looked sad. Has that ever happened to you? Please tell me that you didn’t throw it out! If you did, hopefully next time you won’t.

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Don’t get me wrong, I used to diet. Probably most of my life I was on a diet. When I lost my first 50 pounds back in 2006, I was dieting. I was miserable, afraid to eat anything that wasn’t on ‘the plan’ and mainly concerned about repeating history and gaining it all back.

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Do you snack at night or have you never got into the habit and just drink tea? At my house there’s always someone asking me “What’s for snack?”

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Are you still looking for a snack that gives you some oomph? Staying power and yummy satisfaction at the same time? I’ve got a fabulous suggestion for you!

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Wouldn’t it be great if you came home and you had a tray of cut veggies or a fruit salad waiting for you? And if it were there, would you be more inclined to choose a healthier snack as opposed to some chips or a handful of chocolate chips? I have nothing against chips or chocolate chips, but if you have that for a snack when you’re hungry, one handful isn’t going to do it.

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So true!!! The key to success is to plan ahead. I know, on paper it sounds easy enough, but life gets in the way and we all have hectic schedules and work and family… I could go on and on. And that lunch that you were going to prepare in the morning – it didn’t happen. What about breakfast? What happens if you wake up late or someone needs you or it’s your carpool day or the car didn’t start?

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Have you ever bought a prepackaged 5 pound bag of apples only to come home and see that many are ‘blemished’? Don’t tell me that you threw them out!!! I know that’s the first instinct, but what if you made something with them?

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Let me tell you about balance, but you do realize that I’m not talking about yoga poses. I’m talking about balancing healthy eating with indulgences.

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