Where I’ve Been and a Christmas Giveaway for you!

I’ve been a bad blogger lately.

Life has gotten in the way. I have been exhausted and needing to spend my attention elsewhere and so, my blog has had to take an unannounced break.

Even with this my followers continue to grow.

For that, I owe each and every one of you a tremendous amount of gratitude.

So beyond work, children, science fair projects, church, meetings, traveling and life…what have I been up to?

Well, if you follow me on Instagram or Twitter, you have probably noted my repeated use of the hashtag #elf4health.  You may have even noted the Elf4Health image in my side bar over to the right.

Because I am aiming to keep up with my healthy habits this season but not quite ready to do another Whole30, I jumped on board when my friend Elle announced that she and Lindsay, the Lean Green Bean, were hosting this event.  Elf4Health is like a ginormous support group filled with fun challenges to help keep us on the right track throughout the holiday season.

Most of these challenges have been fairly on-track with my day to day habits anyway… share a healthy snack, make your own dressing, add weights to your routine, etc etc.  But there was one that I really hesitated to join in on. In fact, I almost skipped it all together.

Seriously, a huge part of me didn’t even want to think about participating in this challenge.

The idea of not only walking out of my house without make-up was that terrifying to me.

Seriously.

But I did it.

Not only did I leave my house without make-up; I did it on a day when I was hosting a staff development day on my campus. A day when I would see teacher friends and trainers who only see me once every few months. A day when I would stand in front of my entire district and offer a welcome to them and members of our corporate office.

And before I did that, I posted a picture of my nude face online. (Crazy, right?)

I was sure someone amid this group would have something to say about my nude face.

But you know what?

They didn’t.

Not only that, but I received several compliments about the amount of weight I have lost (2 dress sizes in the last 4 months) and I was told that I looked “fresh and happy.”

Seriously!

By that evening, dozens of people had seen me online and in person without a drop of makeup on and not one negative comment.

Not even from my children.

I even went out with my husband that night…without having to ‘put on my face’ it was the quickest date night prep ever.

Then my friend Lindsay made a compilation of all of the beautiful make-up free Elf’s who had happily joined in on the challenge (several going to much bigger events than I) and I understood what a liberating thing this was.

I let my make-up free adventure carry over through Saturday and most of Sunday. I did put on a bit of eye shadow for church, but have remained make-up free otherwise.

:) Boy this has been fun!

 

This week I have created a menu for my family (something I know I should do but rarely accomplish), I am ready to drink lots of water tomorrow, clean out my fridge on Tuesday, eat two servings of veggies before dinner (that’s an easy one!), treat a co-worker to a healthy treat on Thursday and workout with a buddy on Friday.

It’s not too late for you to join in on the fun! Simply fill out the form on this page and you’re in!

Who knows, maybe we’ll even be buddy elves in the third round! (I would LOVE that!)

 

And while I don’t have a recipe to share with you this evening, I do have a gift for one lucky reader!

This will be especially handy for someone making a transition into the gluten-free world.

Following my Celiac diagnosis, shopping became treacherous. Hours upon hours reading labels and trying to discern if those “natural ingredients” were worth trying or not.

While my shopping habits have changed and packaged foods are rarely a concern, there are still times when I need to know if a product is truly safe for my family.

When in doubt, I turn to my Triumph Dining Gluten-Free Grocery Guide.  This handy dandy book has saved me countless hours over the years, and I have no doubt it will save you, too.

So tonight, one lucky reader will have the opportunity to receive a free copy of The Essential Gluten-Free Grocery Guide to help them through this holiday season and beyond.

To enter, please leave one comment for every action completed below:

1. “Like” And Love it, Too! on Facebook, leave a comment saying that you did.

2. Follow And Love it, Too! on Twitter, leave a comment saying that you did.

3. Subscribe to And Love it, Too! by E-mail and leave a comment saying that you did.

4. Join the Elf4Health Challenge (tell them Sunny from And Love it, Too! sent you!) and tell me which up-coming challenge you think will be most fun and which one you believe would be most challenging in a comment.

5. Sign up for the Triumph Dining Newsletter and leave a comment saying that you did, below.

Entries will be received until Friday, December 14, 2012 at 11:59pm CST. Here’s to a healthy and happy holiday season! Best of luck to you all! xoxo

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Comments

  1. Wow- great recap and giveaway! Due to some kidney stone issues I have gone almost completely gluten free and have noticed a huge change so this would be amazingly helpful! I have followed you on FB!

  2. and followed on twitter

  3. and am signing up for the newsletter.

  4. I am already part of the elf4health challenge :) :) (and loving it)- the biggest challenge for me this week will be Thursdays- I don’t drink coffee so will have to figure out how I want to go about doing it- actually I take that back- Fridays working out with a friend will be hard because most of my friends don’t do the exercise thing like I do or on Fridays- I have asked a friend if she wants to go walk so we shall see.

  5. and I am subscribing to your blog but I am doing it through RSS/Google reader and not through the email (I tend to just delete those) so if that doesn’t count I understand!

  6. I subscribe to your blog via emal. Thank you for the giveaway! And you look beautiful without makeup. (:

  7. I’m a FB fan.

  8. I’m a Twitter follower @lilwith.

  9. I’m an email subscriber.

  10. I signed up for the Triumph Dining Newsletter.

  11. I joined the Elf4Health challenge, but I missed the first round & it looks like yesterday was the day for Round 2 to come out….so I think I may have missed that as well. :-( Based on what I see on the website though….Dec 27th says to Make a list of 20 things I’m thankful for. I <3 doing this. One of the most challenging things: Baking cookies! Since I'm gluten-free, I find baking to be ever-so challenging trying to substitute in allowable flours. I'll definitely give it a shot though!

  12. I am so glad to see women getting that its who they are and not what you look like. I dont where makeup at all and no one ever says anything and if a woman does. Its usually because they arent confident and dont feel like they can do it. I liked you on fb. i am subscribed to this blog by email. I signed up for the Triumph Dining Newsletter

  13. Good on you for not succombing to the make-up monster.

    I’ve been totally make-up free for years, mostly out of necessity. I tried many different products. I’ve probably spent thousands only to be made miserable with dermatitis, eye irritation or open sores. We spend so much time and effort on our food and lifestyle when we live on the Gluten Spectrum and/or with food allergies. Why shouldn’t we demand safer poducts for our skin, including clothing fibers and laundry products? It’s truly a form of gender and disability discrimination if you stop and think about it.

    We’re fed so many lies about how we should look that we give away much of our power. If you haven’t seen it “Beauty Myth” by Naomi Wolf is a thought provoking read.

  14. I’m SO happy you had such a positive experience with the makeup free challenge! Love the thoughts you shared – this is exactly what this challenge is about.

    I’d love to win a copy of that book. Even though I’m not GF, I think it’d be a valuable resource for any dietitian to have on the bookshelf! I follow you on Twitter & like you on Facebook – hopefully that counts as one entry. :)

    • Of course this counts as an entry, Elle! And yes, this book would be a fantastic resource…even if you don’t win, this would be a worthwhile investment. xoxo

  15. Followed on FB! Thanks for the giveaway!

  16. Followed on Twitter!

  17. Subscribed!

  18. Signed up for the newsletter!

  19. Liked on FB

  20. Signed up for the elf challenge. I love to bake so I’m looking forward to baking cookies! I’m not a big fan of casseroles (weird i know i think its that my food is all mashed together) so that will be a challenge for me to one up with something I enjoy.

  21. And the newsletter

  22. Just found this one in my In Box. Sunny, you are so beautiful, I’m not at all surprised that you got compliments and no negatives. I’m a no make-up gal and can’t even imagine having the deal with make-up. That is such a pretty photo of you. Your face looks so thin! I’m glad you ahve been taking care of yourself instead of worrying about tending to all of us!

    xo,
    Shirley

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