My Favorite Thing About Me

I LOVE to laugh and I need to be around others that like to loosen up and enjoy a joke. There is nothing worse than taking yourself so serious. Life can be so amazing if you are willing to LAUGH.

So let’s get started, I want everyone to share one thing about them that will make everyone laugh. I’ll go first. Watch the video below and you’ll get the idea of what I want you to share.

Happy people have more fun!

You could have chosen any blog to read but you chose mine and I’m honored!

~Belladonna~

 

 

Photoshopping and Fitness Shouldn’t mix! This Is Not A Game

I was going to write about something totally different today but this particular topic struck my heart. I am frequently on Instagram, I post a lot on my timeline as well as on my instastory. I always scroll through and look at all the latest diets, workouts, coupon deals and of course memes, because you know I have to get my laugh in for the day. But my laughter stops when I come across someone that is constantly contradicting themselves when it comes to diets and photoshopping their pics.

If you are in the fitness industry then you are held at a higher standard then those that aren’t. You have a responsibility and you know this. I am constantly contacted by women and men of all ages on social media. They ask me everything from workout plans to how often they should work out. They want to know what works for me. Now what if I took pictures and in those pictures, you saw me with a 6 pack. Not just any 6 pack but abs that looks as if I do crunches and pull-ups in my sleep. Then the day finally comes when we meet in person and now your confused. Like…. have I just been catfished? The answer is YES! Yes, you have been catfished.

Do you know how many people are holding on to your every lying word? I mean here are these eager people ready to do whatever just to lose weight and they are depending on you for help. But the wrong help can be deadly.

You can’t starve yourself one day and then eat fast food the next. Now maybe just maybe a pound or two will drop but what about internally. How do you feel internally? What is your cholesterol level looking like after treating your body like a human YOYO?

Let’s face it you have to work out, eat clean, rest and let stress go. Once you do all those things you will lose healthy weight and get in the best shape of your life.

I strongly recommend that everyone seeking weight loss help should first seek a nutritionist and then a trainer. When you meet with your trainer make sure you have a list of questions. The questions are for them not you. Treat your first session like an interview and see if they are knowledgeable on the subject of weight loss.

The truth is, you should be picky about who you hire because there are 1000’s and 1000’s of trainers, health coaches, and wellness coaches on instagram, facebook, and local gyms. So there are an endless amount of options. The right trainer/ coach is out there.

Be careful who you choose and make sure they look like their online photos.

You could have chosen any blog to read but you chose mine and I’m honored!

~Belladonna~

Southern Tasting Apple Cobbler In A Crock Pot

I have tried several ways to make my apple cobbler and apple crisp but this is by far the best way. I promise you will love it and refuse to make any other way. This recipe is short, easy and to the point. I bet you have everything you need right in your cupboards.

You literally need 15 minutes and then 2 hours to let it cook in your crockpot. I always make this when I’m invited to a party or trying to lift the mood of one of my kids or husband. I want them to feel that I deeply care about their problem but the truth is I don’t have time to REALLY care unless it’s a serious issue. Fortunately, haven’t experienced that just your average teenage meltdown.

INGRIDIENTS

  • 5 Large Red apples
  • 1 Box of yellow cake mix
  • 1-1/2 Sticks of butter
  • 2 Cups of sparkling cider
  • 3/4 Cups of brown sugar
  • 2 tsp Vanilla
  • 2 tbs Cinnamon

Place crockpot on high to begin warming for your delicious dessert.

Slice apples very thin and place in a large bowl. Add cider, brown sugar, vanilla, and cinnamon. Stir until and place mixture in heated crock pot.

Add yellow cake mix on top of crockpot mixture, melt butter and pour top. Cook for 2 hours. Unplug crockpot and let cool for 15 minutes before serving. Serve with two scoops of vanilla bean ice cream.

Please enjoy the video below💗

You could have chosen any blog to read but you chose mine and I’m honored.

~Belladonna~

The Best Broccoli​ Cheese Soup

It’s cold outside and we all need something warm to eat. I can’t think of anything better right now than soup. But let’s make it fun and skip using a bowl for our soup. Follow me into the kitchen to see what I mean.

So,  I love to make my meals fun for my family. They enjoy when I take a few extra minutes in order to spice it up a bit. I like the look on their face when they walk into the kitchen and see something so simple and think it’s so great. I get most of my ideas from different restaurants and I think of the fun ways they serve their meals and then recreate it at home.

The recreation today was broccoli cheese soup with a bread bowl.

Ingredients -Makes 6 soup bowls

20 minutes to prep and 20 minutes to cook

  • 1 large onion
  • 2 cups carrots
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 heads of broccoli (florets only)
  • 1 stalk of celery
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese
  • seasonings Salt and pepper
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • 3 tbs flour

I love to go to the store and hope that they are out of the bread that I want so they can make it fresh. If I ask they will do it regardless. They treat me well because I’m always there.

In a small pan pour in olive oil and saute the onion. Cook for 5 minutes until it is translucent. In a large pan add flour and butter until blended. Add in milk, stock, onions, and all the other diced vegetables. I use a food processor because I prefer small pieces of vegetables in my soup. Season lightly with salt and pepper and let simmer for 20. Add cheese and serve when melted.

Cut the bread bowl in a circle and take the top off. Pull a small amount of the bread out from the inside and start filling it up with your delicious soup.

You could have chosen any blog to read but you chose mine and I’m honored.

~Belladonna~

 

The Best Broccoli​ Cheese Sou

It’s cold outside and we all need something warm to eat. I can’t think of anything better right now than soup. But let’s make it fun and skip using a bowl for our soup. Follow me into the kitchen to see what I mean.

So,  I love to make my meals fun for my family. They enjoy when I take a few extra minutes in order to spice it up a bit. I like the look on their face when they walk into the kitchen and see something so simple and think it’s so great. I get most of my ideas from different restaurants and I think of the fun ways they serve their meals and then recreate it at home.

The recreation today was broccoli cheese soup with a bread bowl.

Ingredients -Makes 6 soup bowls

20 minutes to prep and 20 minutes to cook

  • 1 large onion
  • 2 cups carrots
  • 2 cups of milk
  • 2 cups chicken stock
  • 2 heads of broccoli (florets only)
  • 1 stalk of celery
  • 2 cups sharp cheddar cheese
  • seasonings Salt and pepper
  • 2 tbs butter
  • 3 tbs olive oil
  • 3 tbs flour

I love to go to the store and hope that they are out of the bread that I want so they can make it fresh. If I ask they will do it regardless. They treat me well because I’m always there.

In a small pan pour in olive oil and saute the onion. Cook for 5 minutes until it is translucent. In a large pan add flour and butter until blended. Add in milk, stock, onions, and all the other diced vegetables. I use a food processor because I prefer small pieces of vegetables in my soup. Season lightly with salt and pepper and let simmer for 20. Add cheese and serve when melted.

Cut the bread bowl in a circle and take the top off. Pull a small amount of the bread out from the inside and start filling it up with your delicious soup.

You could have chosen any blog to read but you chose mine and I’m honored.

~Belladonna~

 

One Year Down…​Thank You For Giving Me A Chance

It has officially been 1 year since I started this particular blog and I have been welcomed into the blog world with open arms. I have to admit that every time I write something I second guess myself. I wonder if it’s interesting enough to get you to come back and view another post. I always try to just be myself and that alone is scary.

I remember when I first started my blog I was approached by a well known public figure and he gave me THE BEST pointer. He told me if I wanted my blog to be successive then I had to remain truthful to myself. Choose topics that hit me deep in my core and then just go. Talk the way I do every day, and make sure my personality is present at all times. When he told me this I said well what if people don’t like me or what I have to say?

He responded, “Do you have friends”? “Do they like to engage with you”? “After 17 years does your husband still like you and engage with you”? But most importantly “Do you like you and find yourself interesting”? I thought fair enough!

So here we go! My content is going to be bananas this year, filled with food, diets, crafts, workouts, real talk, and my Life. I am elated to welcome you all to my world.

I know that there are thousands and thousands of blogs that you could have joined or read but you chose mine and I’m honored!

~Belladonna~

The Truth Will Set You Free But First It’ll Piss You Off

“The truth will set you free but first it’ll piss you off”. No truer words have ever been spoken. The truth will sting your soul and crush your thought process if you aren’t willing to receive it. I know that the truth is a hard pill to swallow but if growth is what you are looking for then you have to take the truth pill.

I mean think about it. How many times do we have to bump our heads and fall before we take a sit and listen to constructive criticism? How often do we have to set ourselves back 10 steps because we refused to take advice? Then when we fail, we look to those same folks for a hand or an ear. I don’t know about you but I’m so over listening to nonsense.

I have been a part of the health and fitness industry since the day I took the oath to protect and serve my country. So please believe me when I tell you I have heard every excuse in the book when it comes to fitness journeys. But the truth is if you want a healthy lifestyle bad enough you will do whatever it takes to achieve it, to win it and to own it.

The truth is you have to eat right, you have to work out, and you have to change your mindset. There aren’t any short cuts and there isn’t an easy way out. You have to stop looking for a quick fix and you have to be willing to hear the truth. No matter how painful it is to hear what you have to do to get from A to B, you have to listen and be willing to execute.

I have had the truth hit me in the stomach like a ton of bricks. Did I like it? Hell no! It pissed me off because it hurt. It hurt my pride and for short while my self-esteem. But in the end, the truth saved my life and I will never forget that moment.

Here I am in the summer of 1994, I thought I was prepared for the military, my eating and work out habits were amazing. I felt like I was gaining strength internally as well as externally. But to my surprise, I had an abundant amount to improve on.

My first week in the military my drill sergeants did not hesitate to tell me that they thought I was weak. My heart dropped when they told me that. But they weren’t done. I was told that I wouldn’t last because I couldn’t do more than 4 push-ups in a row, I didn’t stand up for myself against some of the other soldiers in my platoon I was to quiet and I hid behind everyone else. Try swallowing that!

They pissed me off because the truth tore me up. Here I am 18 years old in South Carolina all by myself and receiving truths about me that I didn’t want to hear. I couldn’t run from it, I had to deal with it. And That’s just what I did. When the lights went out at 2100 hours I was up doing pushups, holding my planks and mentally connecting with myself. By the end of boot camp I dared anyone to even think about giving me a cross look. I was still quiet because that’s just who I am. I’m more of a listener than a talker. That’s just something that can’t be changed by my courage can and was.

Because I was able to accept the truth I became a platoon leader, push-up queen, and one badass motha…shut yo mouth.

I’ll never forget Drill Sergeant Henry and Drill Sergeant Jellen. They saved me, by exposing strength that I didn’t know I had. I allowed their truth to piss me off so that I could gain my freedom!

Is it time for you to get pissed off?

You could have chosen any blog to read but you chose mine and I’m honored.

~Belladonna~

 

 

Empanadas

You don’t have to fry your food for it to be crispy and delicious. Try putting an egg wash on top of your empanadas and slide into the oven. Place the oven on 375 degrees and cook for 20-25 minutes.

But let me tell you the best part about this meal, other than the fact that it is Keto friendly. (However if you are trying to lose weight then leave out the potatoes and of course use almond flour). There is always so much of the filling left and you know what that means right? Yep break out your favorite chips and start dipping.

So yesterday was Super Bowl Sunday and I wanted to make something delicious but not loaded with calories. When I’m watching the game I like to eat and serve finger foods. I’m usually a huge fan of wings but I wanted to switch it up this year and I am so glad I did.

When I initially looked up the recipe for empanadas I saw that frying was a popular method but not something that I wanted to do. The less grease in my life the better. So I decided to bake them, which was perfect because the crust is prepared the same way you would make a pie crust. My pies always have a nice crust and are beautifully golden because of the egg wash. Without the egg wash your empanadas will have a dull appearance because of the flour. A simple wash will make them glow.

Please feel free to use chicken, tofu, shrimp, sausage, vegetarian plant-based sausage or ground beef. You can’t go wrong with any of these options. I used Ground beef and for my nonmeat lovers, I used vegetarian plant-based sausage.

If your crust is homemade then please make this before you begin your filling. You want to place the prepared crust in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes. Begin by sifting flour into a bowl and 2 sticks of melted butter, slowly pour in 1-1 1/2 cups of water. Place in plastic wrap and place in refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Begin by browning your meat add seasonings and chopped vegetables. cook on low for 5 minutes and then add potatoes, green chiles, enchilada sauce, and pureed tomatoes. Cook on medium heat for 5 minutes and then low heat for 10-15 minutes. Place filling into a bowl and look cool for 15 to 30 minutes.

Ingredients For Filling

  • 2 pounds ground beef
  • 1/2 of the vegan plant-based sausage roll cooked separately of course
  • 5 medium-sized potatoes
  • 2 tsp oregano
  • 2 tsp black pepper
  • 1 onion
  • 2 red pepper
  • 2 green pepper
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 3 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp paprika
  • 2 tsp chili powder
  • 1 can of green Chile’s
  • 1 can of enchilada sauce
  • 1 large tomato fresh or 1 can

Crust

  • 1-1 1/2 cup of water
  • 2 sticks of melted butter
  • 3 -3 1/2 cups of flour of your choice.

Cut the dough into 4 sections and then cut again. Form it into a ball and then roll them out, stuff, fold, rub egg wash on top and bake on 375 degrees for 20-25 minutes.

You could have chosen any blog to read but you chose mine and I’m honored.

~Belladonna~

I’m Not That Kind Of Lady

There are these ideas floating around in the universe about what makes you lady. Has anyone ever told you that you curse like a man? Or better yet, your arms are looking manly so you might want to calm it down with those weights. I actually had a man tell me that my thighs were bigger than his as if that means anything. What did he think I was going to do? Dramatically fall down to the ground and cry my eyes out.

My thighs are big. I squat, lift, cycle with high resistance, and I run. If I wanted little bird legs than I would stop doing all those things. But I like looking strong and being strong. My strength is something that no one can take from me. I won’t be shamed into thinking that my muscle makes me less of a lady.

I’ll never forget when I returned home for the first time after basic training. I was in the best shape of my life. 5’6 and a half and 175 pounds. Mind you before basic training I weighed 132 – 138 pounds. I ate and trained like a crazy lady. No one outworked me. Anyways, I came to visit my parents because I had a few weeks before the spring semester of my freshmen year began. A few of my friends were in town visiting and I could not wait to see everyone. But quickly my emotional state changed greatly. My emotions were overcome by the “wow you look just like your brother” (He is a massive, muscular athlete). I would be rich if a had a quarter for every “dang you look like a man” comment. Consequently, most of the men they knew were out of shape dads with a beer belly.

I on the other had a flat, tight stomach and legs that could crack walnuts. None of their dads could do that. Here I was at 18 just becoming a lady and told that a lady is what I wasn’t. If I wanted to be a lady then I needed to drop back down to 132 pounds.

I wish I had the frame of mind that I have now. The things that I would have said may make you blush. Let me correct that, you most definitely would have blushed and dropped your jaw in a amazement.

People listen to me!!!! Muscle is beautiful, it’s sexy and it will keep you from injury when you are working out and everyday life. The older we get the more we need weights in our life. Yo will not “look like a man” whatever that means. Fall in LOVE with you and your curves.

You could have chosen any blog but you chose mine and I’m honored.

~Belladonna~


Transforming My Life

Last week I embarked on a journey that is sure to change my life. I started Transform 20 and let me tell you, it might only be 20 minutes but you are down in it without any breaks. A modification is encouraged if you need a break, BUT don’t STOP!

Shaun T is the creator of this workout so you know you are going to be rolling your eyes and wanting to kick over the TV.

Or is that just me?

I Have to admit that I have a Love, Hate relationship with that man. He will push you and I swear I am cursing him out the entire time. I remember the first that I worked out to his Insanity program I thought to myself, this man has lost his mind. But I quickly became hooked. Insanity helped me get into the best shape of my life. My last baby was turning 2 and I was determined to tweak this crickety body back to what it once was. Shockingly I was able to accomplish my goal with hard work and a kick butt nutrition plan.

So then life happened and homegirl put back on some unwanted pounds but I had fun doing it. Zero regrets because I am blessed to be able to move and go back to where I was. But the sad fact is……I’m older, which means my metabolism died. Okay maybe it didn’t die. But it definitely had one foot in the grave.

I am depending on Shaun T to save me and my clients. Shaun T pushes me to be my best and then I return push my clients. Well most of them, my older clients would run me over if I tried Transform 20 with them.

Here is a sneak peak of the 1st week of the program. If you like what you see and would like to change your body with me then leave me your email/phone number.

You could have chosen any blog to read but you chose mine and I’m honored!

~Belladonna~