Ulcerative Colitis

Fa-la-la-la-la Infusion Time

Disclaimer: This post may contain Amazon affiliate information.

I just can’t help the Christmas reference title when everything around me is all Christmasy & cute. Our choir just down the hall from my room has been singing Christmas music since October so I’ve been in the Christmasy mood for a little while. Being in the Christmas spirit does not necessarily mean that you are at all prepared for the holidays or the havoc it can wreak on your gut. Read past my infusion update for my personal tips to maintaining your gut & sanity through the holidays.

I am currently on infusion #16, that is 2 1/4 years on my journey with Entyvio. I have seen so many personal stories of hope or despair, especially in the beginning when I felt like death & that the medicine wasn’t working. I needed to find hope in others words that it would be a fixer and that the side effects and slow healing were part of the process. Not what I wanted to hear when I was in pain and exhausted.

If you stumbled on my story because you have ulcerative colitis, I have a very basic secret for you. There is not a fast fix. Healing is a marathon, not a sprint. Entyvio took approximately 6 months to show big signs of improvement and I have steadily healed since that time. As our bodies start to attack themselves, there are many systems effected. While my gut was tearing itself up, I was bleeding to the point of severe anemia which was in turn causing massive hair loss and extreme fatigue. As the medicine started to kick in, I began dealing with the issues that were caused by UC. I received 2 iron infusions which greatly helped the anemia and my numbers are holding steady for going on 1 1/2 years.

The anemia caused hair loss & the thin hair caused me to try numerous “not flattering” hairstyles that I did not enjoy. Having my iron steady and drinking my vitamins have grown my hair thicker and fuller than they were before I got sick in 2012. I actually wear my hair down everyday day because I enjoy the change and want to savor it.

To thicken your hair, you have to balance your vitamins. Check out my Healthy Hair Series for help.

On to my tips for maintain your holiday sparkle!

Tip 1: Don’t stress! I know, that’s a hoot especially with all the shopping and family time and cooking to do, but you must find an outlet for the holiday stress. My outlet, I mindlessly scroll through Amazon adding things to my basket and then dumping them the next day so that I don’t buy them. I am an Amazon Affiliate so I pretty much live through Amazon. If your an Amazon addict, click through any link on my site anytime you shop and I make a little extra for referring you.

Tip #2: Why face the mall or even worse, Walmart, when you can shop online. I let my fingers do the walking and ordered a lot of nieces and nephew gifts off Walmart.com and my fave, Amazon.com. When you don’t have the energy to leave the house or you need a bathroom as frequently as you blink, you can shop online and save yourself anxiety and stress!

I just have to get a Keep Calm into my tips!

Tip #3: Plan! I am a planner. Like the 3 months in advance of a vacation kind of planner. I have to plan for the holidays. The biggest planning is how to split time between both sets of our parents so all is equal in our world. The most major planning for my gut is making sure that the food I know will be at our holiday gatherings will agree with my gut. If it won’t, I take things with me like my Simply Smooth Coffee from Folgers because regular coffee for days in a row cause my gut stress. If you can plan ahead for food, you get a lot less cranky with your family!

Tip #4: Make lists. I am not usually a list maker but when I am packing, I tend to forget the little things like underwear for the boys and my toothbrush. I don’t know how many times my mother-in-law has given me a toothbrush because I forgot mine. Starting a packing list right now will help ease the stress of long trip packing and maybe you’ll remember your kids underwear this Christmas. They might appreciate that unless you have a 3 year old who enjoys commando!

Tip #5: As your basket full of purchases roll in from your finger shopping, wrap them and don’t put them aside. I tend to leave the wrapping until the night before we head to our first Christmas. We get to enjoy the presents typically for about 12 hours before we leave the house. I started wrapping last weekend and the boys thought Christmas was already here. 😂 I love looking at the tree but it looks even more festive with the gifts under it, before Christmas Eve.

I am shooting for a stress free Christmas this year. Now, the biggest challenge, winning the ugly Christmas sweater competition at school!

Ulcerative Colitis

#15 & Not a Moment Too Soon

It feels like an eternity since my last infusion! Or since school started back! Or since I’ve talked to my sparkly community of fabulous support! The silence is probably very telling. Stress abounds as I near the middle of the fall semester for both my graduate classes & middle school kids. The kids just got a four day weekend but teachers don’t get a break until Thanksgiving & it can’t get here fast enough!

Stress is my (our) enemy & it seems like the pile of stink is never ending! What would the world be like without it? (The stress, not the stink) I would love to find out but it’s not gonna happen so the only option is to suck it up!

It has been 2 weeks shy of two years since I started Entivyo & what a difference it has made! The biggest of which is that I have not been on prednisone for my gut in 25 months! Ahhhhhhhh! That’s cause for celebration!!!!!!!

I have not seen my gastroenterologist since a checkup colonoscopy in June of 2016 to confirm the Entivyo was working. Not that I don’t absolutely love my gastro but the less I see of doctors, the better!

The doctor just found me in the infusion room to tell me that my blood numbers look good but my potassium is very low. I need to start a high(er) potassium diet so here’s a few foods that Dr. Axe recommends.

My new shopping list:

Avocados galore


Sweet potato

Dried apricots

Coconut water


Until next time, keep it sparkly!

Prayers go out to the Red Raider community #raiderpower

Entyvio · Ulcerative Colitis

#14: How to Sparkle in the Dark

Ouch! They just took blood from my forearm. It doesn’t matter how much fluid I drink before I come to get my infusion, they can’t find my veins & I get blood drawn from random locations. I guess the most important part is that they are able to find blood still & that my numbers are still good. ??

Facebook memories bring out my thankfulness! Thankful I’m on infusion #14 & it is continuing to work. Thankful that I don’t look like this anymore. 

This picture was 5 years ago & a lot of pounds & muscle ago, 56lbs to be exact.

I think I look a little better today! Don’t mind that growl on baby mans face, he really is a lover!

I am thankful that I have learned an insane amount about how to live comfortably with ulcerative colitis. It wasn’t smooth sailing at first. It took a lot of diet trial & error. I searched Google often praying that I would find the miracle foods that would help me magically heal & take the pain away. That research led me to some interesting realizations and helped me learn to sparkle in the dark. It’s like “fake it til you make it” dipped in sparkles!

5 secrets to sparkle in the dark:

I am about to be honest with you, completely, brutally, raw honest about trying to sparkle in the dark. It’s not always easy or convenient but it is possible. It is possible through all life’s ups & downs & knuckle balls & strike outs to hit a grand slam despite your burdens. The hubs will be proud of this baseball reference ?

You are strong even in your illness! You can do it, no matter how bad your gut, I mean life, may seem. Also remember, YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Sometimes you just need to know that & to see hope through listening to others stories & advice. If you are completely healthy, you are awesome! I hope you can take away a nugget from this gold mine. If you are sick & hurting, I’ve been there too & I wish someone could have gotten it through my thick skull that the dark has to come before the light.

So my mind is full of thoughts about my journey & how I have changed & stretched & been pulled out of my comfort zone. Sometimes you just need to stretch to be the light you are meant to be. You have a story so share it. 

Here’s my tips to shine.

1. Have a sense of humor about your new normal- My husband will tell you that I’m not a haha, funny type person all the time. In fact, I have a tendency to see the problems before I see the positives. I think that comes with some types of personalities. I like to think that I’m just trying to stop problems from arising but sometimes I struggle to see the positive first. 

Humor about your disease is definitely a necessity. You have to talk about your problems or struggles with autoimmune diseases because they can be downright confusing & heavy. It’s nice to be able to talk to others who have been there too! If you have multiple autoimmune diseases like I do, ulcerative colitis & juvenile rheumatoid arthritis, you need to add humor to your tool belt of coping skills. I have included some of my favorite bathroom humor for your enjoyment. 

2. Do something completely liberating. I know I am a wild one, I just look wild, don’t I?! I am the middle child in my family & by far was the wildest child when it came to rebelling. This may come as a surprise but I like to control, well, everything. If you read 5 Years & Counting (I wish not), you know that I try to feel in control all the time but God typically has other plans for me. When I feel a complete loss of control, I try to do something liberating. 

My secret ?, I cut my own hair! This may not be your idea of liberating so search to find what you need to feel your center of control. This is not to be confused with “me time” because that’s of utmost importance too! This is something that lets you regain a little of the control you feel you lose because of external factors. 

As far as cutting your hair goes, I’m not saying take a whole inch off or anything, unless you really need to but a small trim here & there gives you a little extra pep in your step & knowing you did it yourself gives you a little extra sparkle!

3. Don’t stress my pet! Back to that control freak part of me. If you can’t control it, don’t let it control you. Both my UC & JRA are strongly affected by stress. I used to stress about everything & when I stepped back to look at why I was continuing to struggle with pulling out of disease flairs, I realized I stress too much! 

I sometimes envy my husband. He is not a stressor & when he does show stress, he speaks it & it’s gone. I hold onto stress like my favorite blankie & for far too long it controlled my health. As they say on Frozen, “let it go, let it go!” 

There is nothing good that comes from stress. If you are already sick, you will get sicker. If you can slowly (or quickly) drop that stress off at God’s feet everyday, you will be healthier. My main stress was money, I mean, what adults’ isn’t. This adulting thing is definitely a work in progress. So I mentally had to work on not stressing. For awhile, my not stressing looked a lot like not giving a crap about our money. My honey would ask how we were doing financially & I would not have anything to tell him because I stopped looking at our bank account. The stressing wasn’t because I thought we didn’t have anything, I just thought I needed to stress over it to make sure it went where it was supposed to. Boy was I wrong, that money goes where it needs to without my hovering daily! So I have learned to pay bills & be done. I rarely check our accounts & I feel much less stressed. If your stress is money, hopefully I helped, but whatever your stress, let it go!

4. Be healthy! I know, I’m a hoot! If it was as easy as me telling you to be healthy, our world would be a totally different place. By “be healthy” I mean, we are already an unhealthy group of people. Our bodies like to fight against themselves so why not try fighting back. I believe with all my currently healed, happy gut that health can be boosted to fight against autoimmune diseases if you will get your vitamins & nutrients from natural food sources. I will talk much more about vitamin rich food sources in my Healthy Hair Series.

I saw the idea of vitamin healing work  when I was trying to have baby #2 in 2012. I saw an infomercial for the NutriBullet system & decide to make the investment to buy the cool looking blender. It’s not a blender, BTW, it’s a nutrient extractor. Learned that real fast! 

It was a leap of faith that I’m so happy I made. As I began to drink my vitamins through the daily nutriblasts, I noticed a change in energy, lessening bathroom trips, my hair & nails were growing, & I just all around felt better. I won’t mention the funny orange color of skin I noticed from putting the extra orange veggies & fruits in there at first but I’ve evened out to my special shade of copy paper white again so no foul. It took awhile for my body to get to where it had balanced my vitamins back out, approximately a year to be exact, but when I did, baby #2 was on his way. Because nutrition is within your body & we don’t always want to listen to what our bodies are trying to tell us, you have to make it a point to listen. Give it the nutrition it needs & it will act more appropriately. 

5. Enjoy life! It was hard to come back to this place in my journey. I was aways nervous that a peak (remission) would always have a valley (epic remission fail) to follow. That’s not always the case. 

If you think about life, you will always have those valleys but, good gosh, sometimes those valleys aren’t disease filled & sometimes those peaks don’t have to be during a remission. When I stopped wallowing in self pity, I decided to find my sparkle again. Life never goes as fully planned so enjoy the game changers & forks in your road. The biggest part of my life that was affected by this was my family. I was leery taking trips or sometimes even going grocery shopping because I did not want to be in public & have a toilet emergency. I stopped doing those daily things that put us in front of people to, ya know, socialize & stuff. My disease was controlling me & dulling my sparkle! I feel like I had to fake it til I made it just to get back to my normal. 

My kids at school were making me a gift one day & asked my favorite color. I told them sparkles, pink sparkles if I got to choose. Even on the days that I don’t feel my pink sparkly self, I tell myself, God enjoys watching his people sparkle so go light up the world!

Bringing Sparkle Back · Health · Product Reviews · Smoothie

Product Review for Nutribullet RX

Just to let you know, affiliate links are contained in this post and if you order through the links, we receive a small percentage of your purchase at zero extra cost to you. These are my own opinions as a 5 year user of the Nutribullet Extraction System.

I feel like I have done y’all a disservice by not telling you about what I use to make my nutriblasts. You’ve seen it in my pictures and recipe posts but I have not introduced you to my number one breakfast companion. If you’ve missed the recipes, check out Vitamin C Blast, Apple-Strawberry Popsicles, Berry and Chia Smoothie.

In my quest for healthy living, I knew that I needed a way to get all my vitamins to absorb much quicker than any vitamin pill would absorb because my system was gun shy and pulled the trigger way too soon most days. So, I saw an infomercial one day about the Nutribullet Extraction System and wondered if it would actually work, taste good, be easy to do, etc, etc.

How does it work?

The Nutribullet breaks up every part of fruit, including seeds, extracting the nutrients from each nook and cranny so you get the ultimate benefit. I went out on a limb and ordered the original Nutribullet thinking that it would be the ultimate game changer for me and guess what? It has been the best investment in my health that I have ever made. It has been the game changer and this product is phenomenal in so many ways.

There are sooooooo many reasons that this system is my best friend but the biggest is that I can get 4 to 6 servings of fruits and vegetables without even having to think about it later in the day. The USDA says that you need 3 to 5 servings of vegetables and 2  to 4 servings of fruit everyday. Going on the max for both, I need a total of 9 servings of fruits and veggies total everyday. Throw 5 in your cup for breakfast and your meal time decisions are a little easier throughout the day.

A few more reasons that this system will knock your socks off:

It does much more than making a nutriblast. You can make soups & fresh squeezed (or extracted) apple or orange juice. Mixing sauces and marinades. I have even made my own coconut butter and baby food!

This sucker is soooooo easy to clean! It is dishwasher safe, over and over and over again. The motor base is easily cleaned with a Clorox wipe or wet paper towel. I have found that the cup and blade rinse without any scrubbing when they are rinsed immediately after use.

Which system is best?

I have used both the Nutribullet and Nutribullet Rx systems. After 4 years of using the original Nutribullet for making my morning smoothie, I decided to upgrade to the newer version because it had a much larger cup capacity and, as you will learn when you order yours, it shuts on and off by itself. I’m a nerd but this was my biggest selling point because I don’t have to guess if it’s all broken down, the NutriBullet RX does it for me!



I ordered my Nutribullet Rx from Amazon last summer and it was certified refurbished. I have not had a single problem with the original Nutribullet or my certified refurbished Nutribullet Rx.


Can’t miss recipes for the Nutribullet Rx! Check out some of my favorite ways to use the system:

 Apple-Strawberry Popsicles


  Berry & Chia Seed Smoothie



Vitamin C Blast

Ulcerative Colitis

Vitamin C Blast Recipe

Summer cold or allergies dulling your sparkle? Chances are that you vitamin C intake has been lacking & you could use a giant pick me up! Here is one of my absolute favorite recipes to pack in my vitamin C. This is on my mind as our pollen count is on steroids & I’m ready for a winter freeze.

This beautiful mix of fruits and veggies  contains 292% of your daily value of vitamin C! What, whaaaaaaat!!!!! 
Check out this post for why you should crave vitamin C!
I like to mix this up when I feel a cold coming on or my allergies are kicking my tail! I also find that it gives me a fabulous energy jolt if I drink it post cardio workout. 
Just to let you know, affiliate links are contained in this post and if you order through the links, we receive a small percentage of your purchase at zero extra cost to you. I do not ever recommend products that I don’t absolutely 100% love!

I have had many people balk at my green mixes or whatever shade they might turn out that day. Then they smell it. Every one of them has walked away scratching their heads because the blast smells amazing! It has to with the aromatics of apples & strawberries. The point here is that people may look at you like they’d rather eat shoe leather than drink a blast but you know how delish it is.

I recommend you use the NutriBullet RX when you are making this recipe so that the nutrients are completely extracted by the blending process. 


If Heaven has food, this is what my bed will look like. It’s so fluffy and healthy! You can alter your spinach amount depending on how much room you have in the cup. Use no less than 1 cup of spinach per blast.



I found out very early on in recovering from ulcerative colitis flair ups that I do not break down iceberg lettuce without alot of pain so I switched to spinach. Spinach is without a doubt the only food that I can eat with absolutely no pain involved.


This particular grouping of ingredients completely fills the cup so make sure you tighten the lid extra tight to prevent spills.
In your cup, add:

  • 6 strawberries (minus the tops)
  • 2 small oranges (I use Halos)
  • 1/2 lg tomato
  • 1 cup spinach (packed)
  • 1 apple (red or pink are sweeter)
  • Water to the full line

You will be tempted to fill your cup with water to the top. Don’t do it! The water in your ingredients along with the water you added will overflow and be more likely to spew like a frozen and thawed out water bottle. 


After the Nutribullet Rx has done its magic, carefully remove the lid as the liquid will drip off the blade when its removed. I drink directly from the cup but you can pour it into a fancier cup if you want to.


Make sure you drink your Vitamin C Blast and any other blast fairly quickly because you want to get the most out of the nutrients you just extracted. Think about an apple and how fast the air starts to turn it and that is about how fast you need to drink. So, go drink up and enjoy your Vitamin C Blast!


Ingredient List:


Health · Ulcerative Colitis

Healthy Hair: Vitamin C & D

I have a friend that I teach with who swears by Emergenc. You know what I’m talking about, the times a billion vitamin C packed effervescent tablet that you dissolve in water & drink to ward off a cold. She swears by the stuff & starts drinking it at the first sign of a sniffle or a ticklie throat. Her claim is that it shortens the cold & keeps it from getting too intense.


There may be evidence to back up this claim. Vitamin C, according to this WebMD article, is most notorious for its healing qualities. Benefits that interest my autoimmune community would be protecting the immune system.

What does this have to do with your hair? Vitamin C deficiency can cause hair to be brittle & causes it to fall out. When your body hits the reject button on food before it enters your mouth, like a crohn’s or ulcerative colitis patient, you become deficient in the vitamins your body so desperately needs to heal itself.

The trouble with Vitamin C supplements is that they can be harsh on the stomach & gut if you do not take a non-acidic supplement. My gut doesn’t need help misbehaving so I’m all about eating my Vitamin C. Check out my favorite Vitamin C Blast recipe.

The WebMD article goes onto state that the original amount that scientists thought was adequate is not & it advises you to take a vitamin C supplement if you don’t eat 9 servings of fruits & veggies per day. Lucky for you, I’ve included the foods you need to up your Vitmain C intake and avoid an extra supplement.

Remember, I am not a dr & I am doing my darndest to find food sources to replace supplements in my big ole box of pills. If you need a supplement, take it!

The following list was borrowed from DrAxe & contains many foods that I love to eat!

One of my absolute favorite foods to eat in salads or sliced as a snack is a fresh tomato. The tomato did not make Dr Axe’s list but it tops mine because of its heart health benefits & I just love the taste.

Two other foods that I love to squeeze into my water are lemons and limes, both high in vitamin c. My particular obsession is lime because it reminds me of junior high when I was introduced to the “lime squeeze” at Bucks Drive In. Oooooo, its soooooo good! Sonic ice + fresh squeezed limes + salt= Heaven


Vitamin D

I have been told off and on throughout my adult life that I am deficient in Vitamin D. It is very common for women to be deficient in Vitamin D and it tends to go hand in hand with ulcerative colitis.


Vitamin D benefits are outlined in this article found on Healthline.com.

If you do not get enough vitamin D, you risk bone problems, softening of bones, unexplained fatigue (and who needs that!).

You can tell by this list that the absolute best Vitamin D source is the sun so get out and play with your kids or take a walk. The winter months you will have to up your food intake since it’s cold out but there are days in Texas where you can still get good ole fashion sun in the winter.


My particular favorites on this list are tuna, eggs and mushrooms but I have never tried them all together.


I have always had an aversion to milk but I have found Fairlife and we will live happily ever after because it tastes so much better than milk without the lactose. I know the list says raw milk but Fairlife Whole Milk (the red bottle) has 25% of your daily value of Vitamin D. As far as vitamins go, your still getting a good amount from Fairlife.


Here is your fabulous Vitamin C & D shopping list:

  • Guava (never tried it but I will)
  • Red & Green Peppers
  • Oranges
  • Spinach (I replaced Kale)
  • Kiwi
  • Broccoli
  • Brussel Sprouts
  • Grapefruit
  • Strawberries
  • Pineapple
  • Mango
  • Papaya
  • Salmon
  • Tuna
  • Raw Milk (I like Fairlife)
  • Eggs
  • Mushrooms
  • Cheese (O yeah)

Its time to go shopping and enjoy your healthy hair benefits.
Don’t forget to add your other healthy hair vitamin A and vitamins B6 & B12 shopping lists!

Bringing Sparkle Back · Product Reviews

Product Review for Bissell ProHeat Pet Carpet Cleaner

Have you ever had your carpets professionally cleaned? The price is high and includes 3 rooms for the price of 2 or whatever deal they are luring you in with. About 5 years ago I paid a local company to come and clean our carpets, master bedroom, the living room and one extra bedroom. They did not move furniture, that cost more, and they didn’t get out the areas of wear that I thought would easily come out. It was $175 of hard-earned money for a job half done.


Just to let you know, affiliate links are contained in this post and if you order through the links, we receive a small percentage of your purchase at zero extra cost to you.


I decided I would never pay a company to clean our carpets again. I did product comparisons on many different products out there but always came back to a Bissell that was pet specific. I bought a Little Green Bissell when my little puppy princess joined me after college and it is still kicking so I know that Bissell is durable and stands the test of time (or atleast 11 years).




I have to tell you that you really feel like an adult when you buy a carpet cleaner (or a toilet, we’ve done that recently too!)

My site’s settled on this beauty! The Bissell Proheat 2X Premier Full-Size Carpet Cleaner.


I without hesitation recommend this amazing carpet cleaner! It has been fabulous to have it available for any cleaning project I need it for. Because I don’t have to go rent it, this busy working mom can clean a room at a time and get that perfect clean without having to worry about being charged for an extra day or worrying that the professional won’t get the job done to my specifications.

My most frequent use is furniture cleaning. Our couches are getting old and have made it through 2 toddlers food stains and other kid stain contributions and every time I clean them, I am beyond pleased with the results and how extremely easy it is to get a professionl clean on my own.


I recently needed to spot treat our living room rug for ketchup stains after a movie watching “picnic” with the kids. I did not pre-treat the ketchup and it came out like a charm with only a few strokes of the pet stain tool. Yay!


I do recommend using the Bissell Pro 2X Deep Cleaning Concentrated Formula. It does the trick and the bottle has lasted me through 3 full house carpet cleanings and lots of random kid and pet messes.




Comment with your questions if you still wonder if the Bissell Pro 2X Deep Cleaner is right for you. I’ll answer you as soon as I’m finished using my Bissell Pro in our living room, so about 30 mins. Seriously, so easy to use!

Family · Kids · Mommies · Stress Relief · Ulcerative Colitis

Guide to a Stress Free Start to Your Week

Adulting is time consuming & stressful but what if you could reduce your stress. Can you imagine being able to say, “I have time for that” instead of “there’s no time for that”?

I find my mind wondering to ways I can prepare myself on the weekends so that our house runs smoother during the week and reduces stress. Some evenings, I don’t get home until the boys bedtime or later so having plans made & the house in working order is a must for us when Monday rolls around.

Don’t get me wrong, I married superman but a good marriage is about teamwork and we try to be consistent when it comes to a 50/50 split. Ok, ok, I might not be so good at cleaning but I cook so it gives him energy to clean. ?

Here’s my favorite tips on building a stress-free week.

1. Do your laundry on the weekends. Between the constant weekend errands & church & family & friends, I still find myself eager to get all the laundry washed, dried, folded or hung up before our eyes shut tight to start a new week. It gives me a sense of accomplishment!

Image result for never ending laundry basket

I think this habit started for our family when we were first married & lived in an apartment. I would rather have just bought new clothes weekly than carry ten ton laundry baskets across an apartment complex & go back again & again to check on it. Don’t ask why I didn’t just drive the baskets to the laundry room, I was younger back then.

Laundry on the weekend gives you more control over your weekday evenings & you won’t find yourself falling asleep thinking “is my favorite outfit clean?”

Tip: I have found the laundry runs much smoother when we do the kids laundry on Saturday & our laundry on Sunday. Why break it up & not just pile it? If you wash the laundry room by room, you only have one room at a time to put clothes up in. It goes much faster & there’s less chance for toddler hands to try to sweetly “help” fold things.

2. Relaxing “me” time on the weekends is a must to reduce your stress. Happy wife=happy life!

Image result for happy wife happy lifeYou can try these things to have a little “me” time:

  • Unrushed showers- You know, actutally rinse the conditioner completely out and shave!
  • New face mask- Personal fave right now is the Mary Kay Charcoal Mask.
  • File your forgotten nails- I forget this for weeks at a time. You could add this in while letting your mask dry.
  • Go to the bathroom without children barging in- Just a dream!
  • My personal fave…Tell your family your going to pick weeds from the garden so you can go enjoy mindlessly scrolling through Pinterest or your favorite blog, www.sparklewithuc.com uninterrupted, you can always pick weeds for real later. Don’t forget your cup of coffee & some sunglasses! You may be there awhile or until some tiny human sniffs you out.

Your week will run much smoother when you are less stressed which means your house will be more likely to be calm & peaceful which, lets be honest, translates into less mommy yelling & less guzzling of adult grape juice.

Glass of Wine on the Table Free Image Download

3. Grocery shop on Sunday afternoon or whichever day you choose. My children have started eating like ravenous bears before hibernation every night before bed & anytime we’re about to eat a meal. This doesn’t help me avoid the grocery store but I’m glad they’re eating something other than GoGurt & cereal bars these days.

This is momma’s dream cart, full of adult grape juice!

By shopping on the weekends you will start your week with the peace of mind that the fridge is full & ready for your little bears to snack away & eat you out of house & home. You will also know what meals you can make throughout the week so you can have meat defrosted or I know ahead of time if I need to pick up any items from the store on my way home.

4. Cash budgeters listen up. We are giving this our best shot but it doesn’t work so well if I wait until a weekday to pick money up from the bank. We have such a smooth way of talking ourselves into eating out that “just this one time” eating out without our cash turns into 2 or 3 different meals.

When your out and about on Friday (or Saturday if you have a bank that’s open on Saturdays), take out your food and gas allowance for that week. If you’re just an amazing planner, you might even be able to take out the next few weeks worth until payday hits again. That would prevent any lapse of your cash flow so you don’t have any need for your debit card.

5. Last but not least, family time. With two youngins, spending extra time with them before the crazy week begins is a must for them & us. Sunday night dinner is usually the time that we talk about what is coming up the next week between both our jobs, my oldests’ school activities and my classes. I’m soooooo ready to be finished with my master’s. 21 hrs down, 15 hrs to go!

I know that there are things that I don’t realize that I do to help reduce stress during the week but I will tell you that I have incorporated stress reduction into my daily life, fairly seamlessly.

Comment below to share your ideas for reducing your stress.

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Health · Ulcerative Colitis

Healthy Hair: B6 & B12

Healthy hair: do care! I know, I said that totally wrong but my students always reveal my bad quoting of their pop culture terms. If you don’t have teenagers in your life to point out your flaws, your missing out! They keep me on point with the latest…..everything!


I tend to research B Vitamins on days when I don’t sleep well. It takes longer because my fingers are dragging from exhaustion but B vitamins are partly responsible for your energy.


My first research on B vitamins was when my iron anemia was in hyper-drive and when I was exhausted from not absorbing, wait for it…………..my vitamins!!!!


Just because you take a pill vitamin doesn’t mean you absorb it. In fact, if you have any health condition where food does a disappearing act when it hits your mouth, you will do best by eating vitamin rich food.

What can B Vitamins do for you?


I know, your wondering how these vitamins affect your hair. Hair growth has many different components to making it work. B6 helps regulate hormones & can in turn protect from hair loss. B12 helps to prevent anemia which was a major cause for my hair loss.
Pssssst, don’t forget to copy down your vitamin A shopping list herevitamin C & D shopping list from here!

So, what you came here for. Here’s the the top food by Dr Axe for each B vitamin I’ve talked about.

Shopping list:

  • Turkey Breast
  • Grass-fed Beef (B6 & B12)
  • Chicken Breast
  • Pistachios (I just grab these when I go into a convenience store)
  • Tuna (B6 & B12)
  • Pinto Beans (gassy people back off, not too much or your spouse might leave)
  • Avocados (oh yum!)
  • Sunflower Seeds (a summa time fave)
  • Beef liver (It’s the highest B12 but I won’t eat this)
  • Raw Cheese
  • Cottage Cheese
  • Raw Milk
  • Salmon
  • Eggs


Hint: Pay close attention to nutrition facts so that you can gauge if you are meeting your daily value of B Vitamins. If you can’t find the nutrition facts, Google it!


If your like me and don’t like drinking milk, add milk to your morning Nutriblast! It gives it a smooth consistency and you don’t have to choke it down by itself. You can add most things you don’t enjoy veggie, fruit, nut or liquid wise and not be able to tell its in there.


Click for Vitamins C & D.


Take this advice with you for your day! Have a fabulous day, sparklers!

(Disclaimer, this is just my research & I do not have any medical training whatsoever. I am just a woman on a mission for my own healthy hair sharing what I discover.)



Ulcerative Colitis


Hi y’all! Today is infusion day!

I was thinking on the way here that coming to get an infusion is a necessary evil. Who wants to drive themselves to get an IV! Well, me!

Another thought that made me a little emotional last night was anxiety about what the dr would say. I have been more tired lately & I hoped that my blood count was good & there would be no problems that the dr would find. According to my dr, my blood count is still getting higher each visit & the diameter of my blood cells is still growing which he says helps when my body produces new blood. Yay, still on the upswing!

So, the last 8 weeks my gut has been good to me! It allowed me, without incidence, to take a group of students to Washington DC.
Arlington National Cemetery
The White House
Washington Monument
The Capitol

We had so much fun & learned a lot! Before Entivyo, this trip was full of looking for the next bathroom & hoping I didn’t have to make our coach pit stop. This trip, I focused on learning & fun (& of course, the kids).

This necklace is my infusion necklace. I have 2 like this. This one says “inspire” & my other says “blessed”. Maybe I should wear them both!

The definition of inspire is to  give somebody the urge to do or feel something, especially to do something creative.

Inspiring others doesn’t require big fancy words or a billboard. It just requires you to tell your story & keep steady in your journey! I hope you will continue following me through on my journey to keep kicking tail & sparkling in the face of Colitis!

I’m currently working on trying to grow and maintain healthy hair so keep up with my research about healthy hair foods in my Healthy Hair Vitamin Food series.