Month: January 2017

Around Town: The New Grotto Ristorante in Downtown Houston is A Must!

If you’ve lived in Houston for any length of time you’ve probably dined at the Grotto’s located at Loop 610 and Westheimer. It’s kind of a Houston landmark! Well now there is a new Grotto in town located downtown on Avenida Las Americas and she’s a beauty! This past Friday my friend Holly and I decided to go take in some of the sights downtown as our great city is in preparations for hosting Super Bowl LI this coming weekend. Hungry, as usual, and so many great times with friends are spent over food and a great glass of wine, we decided to pop into the new Grotto. I was impressed from the minute we walked in. It is a gorgeous, industrial, but warm atmosphere. Taupe-y grey stone floors mingling with graphic black and white tiles. Light woods. Dark woods. White subway tile. Taupe-y grey brick. Steel grey metals. Stainless steel. Exposed pipes. Edison light bulbs. Large black framed picture windows and pops of green from succulents. There is also an expansive outdoor patio, which features …

Gluten Free Slow Cooker Beef Tips and Rice

Love a good comfort food on a cold day? Or in our case here in Houston, at least a cool day 😉This beef tips and rice is a great comfort food that’s gluten free and so easy to prepare! You can literally get this going in about 10 minutes or less! Dinner will then be on the table in 7 to 8 hours! Serves 4 with leftovers. Ingredients: 2lbs beef stew meat 1 small white onion 1 (12oz) carton of Pacific Cream of Mushroom Soup (gluten free) 1 (16oz) packet of Brown Gravy Mix (Pioneer Brand gluten free) 1 beef bouillon cube 1 cup of water 1/2 a carton of sliced fresh mushrooms (optional) Preparation: Add cream of mushroom soup and gravy mix to slow cooker and stir to mix them together. Add water, diced onion, beef bouillon cube, and stew meat. Stir. Cover and cook on low heat for 7 to 8 hours, stirring once about half way through cooking. Serve over cooked white or brown rice. Enjoy! *If you and your family like …

Happy Chinese New Year: What Will The Year of The Rooster Bring?

The Year of the Rooster is almost here!! Chinese New Year is quickly approaching! This year it falls on Saturday, January 28th. The festivities surrounding the Lunar New Year typically last for about 2 weeks. What will the Year of the Rooster bring? More on the significance of the Rooster later in this post! Lunar New Year — which is sometimes called Chinese New Year even though it is celebrated across East Asia — falls on the first new moon between Jan. 21 and Feb. 20 each year. Google explains, “It’s a time for families to clean their houses, gather together and enjoy festive meals. And just like Christmas, it’s also, notoriously, a time when older relatives bug singletons about why they don’t have a boyfriend or girlfriend, young couples about when they’re going to get married, and newly weds about why they don’t hurry up and have a baby already.” Here in the United States there are sure to be many New Year celebrations throughout our communities. Many individuals and communities, particularly Chinese communities, in …

What Are Your Strengths? You Should Want to Know Your Strongest Stripes

Originally posted on A Color Pop Life:
There seem to be two great competing philosophies on whether someone should embrace their natural strengths, or extend the majority of their attention on their weaknesses.  Myself, I see value and purpose in both. Natural strengths put you in a position to accentuate your potential for consistent higher performance, or outcome(s), in what you’re doing.  You’re more likely to experience more successes at the task(s) at hand, and contribute with greater ease.  It probably comes to no surprise that the following are proven outcomes you may expect when embracing your natural strengths: Increase Your Overall Happiness Increase Your Ability to Manage Problems Decrease Stress Increase Confidence Accomplish More Goals Strengthen Relationships On a different standpoint, switching predominant energy on nurturing weaknesses does lend an opportunity to see where growth in future potential can be realized.  But, I’m not sure I agree that we are meant to be good at all things.  I mean, think about it for a moment … in football, would you give Tom Brady feedback that his…

Compliment Cards: Ten Compliment Cards To Share

Originally posted on A Color Pop Life:
Did you know there is such thing as National Compliment Day? … And, did you also know it is on January 24, 2017?  I love that we have this holiday AND I’m equally happy it falls at the beginning of the year, during a time people are paying most attention to their actions … their thoughts … and areas they want to adjust for a better self. The science of happiness is starting to grow traction in the buzz because it seems to be an area less understood, and one I personally feel we should pay more attention to.  In fact, in a recent special edition of Time magazine, The Science of Happiness: New Discoveries For A More Joyful Life, there is a piece of advice offered that connects perfectly to National Compliment Day: Be Nicer!  Not that I’m suggesting you aren’t the kind kid on the block, but be honest with yourself for a minute and calculate the number of times throughout your day you habitually, but genuinely…

A Lost Art: What Does Your Handwriting Say About You?

Hi TBSH friends! Did you know that Monday, January 23rd is National Handwriting Day? Well, it is. What does that mean? Not much really or, maybe more than you realize! Nonetheless, seeing that the day was coming up it got me to thinking about how the way you write can be an indicator of your personality. Per the “experts” in the field of grapholgy anyway… But, it also got me to wondering how much people actually take pen (or pencil) to paper amymore. I wonder that as I type this post out on the keyboard of my iPad Pro 🤔 And I can use funny emojis to express feelings 😊 I for one, do still write on paper every single day! I actually keep a written calendar that lists each days activities and things I need to do. Even though I may still log it in my iPhone’s calendar as well (I do like the alarm reminders). Before I go to the grocery store I always make a handwritten list so that I hopefully don’t …

Chocolate Raspberry Cupcakes: A Guilt-Free Gluten-Free Recipe

Originally posted on A Color Pop Life:
Oh, chocolate … a girl’s best friend 🙂 ?I lost count years ago to the amount of chocolate candy … cakes … cupcakes … chocolate covered fruits … anything chocolate that I have devoured. ?And, is if I had it already naturally bad for the chocolate bug when pregnant with my daughter it was doubly worse! ?I literally had dark chocolate bars residing on the bedside table. ?Wouldn’t you know it, though – Amelie has the chocolate bug worse than I do! ?In fact, that is one of her favorite stories about how even in the womb she took over my taste buds and demanded chocolate 🙂 So, how do we get this chocolate pleasure with as less guilt as possible is my quest. ?I think I found it! ?This gluten-free chocolate cupcake recipe is the sweetest devotion to just the right amount of chocolate fix I need … AND I can still go for a run afterward because I am not left feeling heavy – No heaviness,…

Can A Organic Skincare Line Really Fight the Affects of Aging? I Think So!

Are you sticking to those resolutions that you made a few weeks ago? Was taking better care of your skin using good for you, organic products on your list of things to do? You might be eating organically, recycling, and doing what you can for the environment, but how natural are your skincare products? Read on to learn about a fabulous skin care line that I have discovered that’s getting rave reviews from med spas and esthiticains! And, as a To Be Simply Happy friend you can get a 10% discount when you order here:  Skin Drink Phytoceuticals ! Just link to them through this post and enter simplyhappy as the promo code at checkout! So, raise your hand if you want to age gracefully, with beautiful skin, as few wrinkles as possible, and all without nasty chemicals and ingredients that sound like they should be in motor oil instead of on your face! My hand is raised, but it’s hard to type with one hand so I’ll put it back down now 🙂 I’ve even read that skin …

8 Home Habits That Mean You are More Intelligent!

I was browsing the Internet earlier today and ran across this post from My Domaine. The title really intrigued me. Might I have any of the “home habits” that mean that I am more intelligent than some of my friends 🙂 Do you? Oh, and by the way, It’s National Ditch Your Resolutions Day today. Appropriate that this article would come out today. Obviously, not by chance…. Here’s the post from My Domaine:  “It’s easy to feel guilty about our bad habits, especially at the start of a new year when overachievers commit to waking up even earlier, working out even more, and being even more organized—leaving the rest of us feeling like lazy slobs. But what if our biggest flaws at home were actually a sign of higher intelligence? According to a variety of studies, our wishful thinking may be true. Finally, you have a witty response to the question, Why is your stuff lying around everywhere again? Or, Can you please stop playing video games? The answer may be as simple as, It …

Hats: Why Fit in When You Were Born to Stand Out!

Grab your hat and celebrate in style today! It’s National Hat Day! And, thank you Dr. Seuss for that wonderful quote: Why fit in when you were born to stand out! Have you ever noticed how a person wearing a hat just looks more…well, polished and cool? It really doesn’t matter what kind of hat! Hats just take things up a notch. Makes one stand out! Compared to the practicality of shoes and handbags, it’s easy to consider hats an afterthought. Everyone needs footwear to leave the house in, and bags to carry your things around. That being said, hats are plenty practical when they are protecting your head from the elements. Plus, they are major styling pieces! While different types of hats have different types of “personalities”, the same holds true for when someone dons a hat! Does a beret make you feel French, or like a spy? A cowboy hat like a cowboy? A hat can really change the way a person feels or perceives themselves, as well as how they project themselves …