January 25, 2017

What’s Up, Wednesday?!

Despite all the sharing about health and wellness, here’s a post a little about what’s going on in my life…

Let’s get this started…

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January 23, 2017

Because 4AM and 0 degrees

Of the many, what are two things that most people typically avoid?

Let me tell you.

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January 17, 2017

Words and Action

Words are so beautiful- they can express love and life but also they can cut into wounds. Martin Luther King Jr.’s Day of honor did not pass right over me. While words are great, actions (or the doing part) is better, right? Action > Words. Um, yes. But let’s not discount the role of words. Both words and actions have their role and both have an impact. Whether small or big. Impact nonetheless. While I read articles and reread quotes he said years and years ago, his actions and impact is still 100% relevant today. So…

Let’s dream and love AND DO. I want to share with you some of my favorite MLK Jr quotes today and why.


I can’t tell you how much this next quote resonates with me, especially within the last year. Resonates to my soul. Lately the majority of my wondering thoughts and ideas can be summed up in this quote-

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All.of.the.time I am dreaming, thinking, and imagining…

How can my gifts be used for the greater purpose? Because I always want to be challenging myself.


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We all have gifts and strengths. And we can use them in different ways to impact the world and those around us.

For example, BeWellWellness didn’t just pop out of nowhere. It has evolved. Over years. 6 years to be exact because while at times my direction, goal and purpose needed more clarity at times, I still just kept moving forward. Now that life has changed in the last year (moving, job, community, friends, everything), I’ve been reframing and praying about my {new} direction, goal and purpose which has evolved into things I never expected. But just keep moving forward.

Be willing to dream. To do the uncomfortable. To talk with people you don’t know. To have new people over for dinner who are outside of your inner circle. Try a new job, or a side job. Join a local group to meet new people. And when you do, listen to them.


One of my strengths is people. I love love love people. Learning about people, connecting with people, just being around people. #extrovert. That’s why I’m also so thankful that I get to teach at the University because I’m able to use my strengths of teaching, health, wellness, along with all my experiences to connect with people as we discuss, learn and discover. I get my energy from being around people. Yep, I’m that kind of person.

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Recently I received an email from a student I had in class. The class was over and grades were submitted long ago. This student will actually be graduating in three months and is not currently enrolled in any of my classes this semester (this is the student’s last semester).

However this unexpected email was very complimentary in a variety of ways and it certainly warmed my heart hearing all these great things. Did I expect it? Oh no, no no. While I share this story- it has nothing to do about me, and everything to do about her. Hang with me.

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It’s not often a student will go out of their way to email a teacher or instructor with written thankfulness. (Dear student, if you have done this before with no ulterior motive- you are way ahead of the game on life). If a student has something to say, by far the majority of the time written comments just go on the final course evaluation, which is anonymous (and fine), and that’s it.

The point is that this student email, while simple and unexpected, resonated with me. It came as another specific reminder for me to take that extra effort and say or do something for someone- whether through words or action, big or small, every day.

The funny thing is that this student has no idea how her simple email has impacted and rejuvenated my “extra efforts” each day, whether by words or action.

I immediately wanted to pay it forward. That feeling, the warmness in my heart, my smile, the thankfulness. The love. So while I do like to send notes/small letters to others in the mail (because hello! letters in the mail is becoming quite “unique” and less common), I instead sent a couple text messages (hello! I’m a mom with small children and a failing memory to remember to do it later). Just 1 minute later and I was done. Simple but heartfelt and honest. Everyday I’ve been doing something different- inviting new friends over for dinner, offering to watch a friend’s kids so they can have a couples dinner, etc. We can all do small things in great ways.

So here is my challenge to you- right this second by either words of action, pay forward “the thankfulness feeling.” It’s your turn. It could be by text, verbally, a written email, a note in a lunch box or briefcase, a post it in your mailbox for your USPS deliverer, social media (fb, IG, twitter, snap- private or public)- whatever! And I challenge you to reach out to someone beyond your typical “inner circle.” Just say or do something for someone else. Spread the love. #thethankfulnessfeeling 

I’m very thankful for you.

Thanks for stopping by today. 🙂

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If you get an interesting story or feedback after paying forward “the thankfulness feeling,” let me know. I would love to hear about it- and maybe I’ll even share it here on the site (with your permission, of course). You can email me at bewellfithappy@gmail.com.


January 16, 2017

Almond Banana Overnight Oats

Hello Monday!

I’m thankful there are no classes today because thank you MLK Jr.! We thank you for being courageous, being a light of love in the world, and choosing to be brave. It’s another reminder for us to be love and see love, because there really is so much love around us.

Let’s get to a few random things first-

This morning there is ice everywhere outside here in the midwest. Thankfully we went grocery shopping yesterday because we were lacking many essential ingredients to create or eat anything. (Note: this was a family grocery trip, which we all know can be eventful with multiple opinions, potential of losing people, and random conversations. We only backtracked through the store once, so I call that a success) We’ll be staying inside today. So if you need to go outside- well, just see if you can stay inside.

Also yesterday the kids had swim lessons and then we watched those two crazy games of football. I mean, we mainly watched the Cowboys game because there just wasn’t enough energy or oxygen to fully invest in another game in the same way. We wore our Cowboys shirts in support and we had hope until the very end. The very end. Oy vey.

So today starts a new day.

An Almond Banana Overnight Oats day!

If you follow me on instagram, you saw that I posted a picture of it this week. While overnight oats are obviously designed for breakfast, I personally have taken a liking to them for lunch as well. Why? Well lunch time is when I’m usually multitasking way too much and when this is available, it’s one less thing to think about. It’s already prepared, it’s healthy and it can be portable.

The origins of this recipe came from the kids cooking class at our local Hy-Vee. (Note: this is not a sponsored post). The class was excellent and I will share more about that soon too (things to look forward to this week!)

However the original recipe has been modified. Here’s what I did.

Almond Overnight Oats

Serves 1


1/2 cup of almond milk (I used unsweetened)

2 1/2 teaspoons of chia seeds (I used the dark seeds)

1 teaspoon flax seeds

2 Tablespoons of almond butter

1 Tablespoon of maple syrup

1/2 cup of rolled oats

*Sliced bananas and sliced almonds for topping


Mix milk, chia seeds, flax seeds, and almond butter together. It doesn’t have to be full mixed, because it’ll be hard to do. Then add maple syrup and oats. Fully submerge oats in milk.

Seal container with an air tight lid and store in frig for at least 6 hours.

When ready to serve, stir and combine ingredients. Add sliced bananas and almonds on top before eating.

Delicious! Enjoy!


Note: This is what I’m eating for breakfast this morning. I was so excited to share this with you this morning that I prepped some last night.

See you here tomorrow!

January 11, 2017

New goals, fresh beginnings

Today I’m focusing on goals for 2017, or rather fresh beginnings (because remember in my recent post {here} I shared about my views on “resolutions”).

So yes, let me share with you my new goals that have evolved to priority most recently. Now since I have a passion for health and wellness, these goals have evolved to encompass the most common pillars of wellness.

1.Write consistently on this site and continue to further strengthening my writing abilities and connect with women. {intellectual wellness, and social wellness}

Why? I’m excited about this new chapter of BeWellWellness and consistency is key. My goal is to post 3-4 times per week. I also want to connect with women more. I’m such an extrovert and interacting with others-in person or online- makes me so happy. And I want more of that since I’m still adjusting to making some more new friends since our move last year.

2. Do a handstand for 10 seconds and walk on my hands. {physical wellness}

Why? While I have other goals related to my physical wellness, listing handstands as a goal is quirky and I like quirky. I like the nontraditional approach and different. But really, I just think it’d be fun to do. I can do a hand stand right now but not for very long. So by listing this as my goal, there are subsequently other areas of body strength I need to improve (therefore this goal was strategic). Note: I first listed 15 seconds as my goal but then changed it because, well, um, let’s be a little more realistic- 15 seconds is a long time.

3. Take a family vacation and a couple-only anniversary vacation. {emotional wellness, social wellness}

Taking vacations has a whole new role in our family lately because training {link} isn’t a factor anymore for anything- timing, length of stay, location, etc. So this is a whole new ball game! The purpose of these vacations will just be to connect more with each other without the normal routines of daily life. We’ve got little ones and I want to create memories with vacations related (even including road trips- because vacations need not be expensive). But also- we have a ten year wedding anniversary approaching this year so a couples-only vacation would be perfect.

4. Read the whole bible {intellectual wellness, spiritual wellness}

I have attempted this last year and I didn’t get through the whole thing. But a friend recently shared with me the app of ReadScripture, which is free, and it organizes your one year reading goal into a manageable calendar with notification prompts. It’s easy to follow because it’ll include chapters from various books of the bible in one reading, as opposed to reading the book from front cover to back cover. While I have my personal hardcover bible and trusty daily devotional, my goal is to read the bible this year.

5. Read 1-2 books per month {emotional wellness}

This is for personal growth. And I listed this because I truly enjoy reading. And I read a lot online- websites, articles, other blogs, etc, but I want to be intentional in reading books too. I read quite a few books last year so I want to maintain my consistency- whether e-books or hardcover books, it doesn’t matter.


So that’s it! I kept it to five realistic goals. I’m looking forward to what lies ahead for this year- I’m curious and hopeful.

Let me ask you- do you have certain priority goals? Any goals that are similar to mine above?

Have a great Wednesday!

January 10, 2017

The Evolution of ‘BeWellWellness’ and What to Expect

Hello Tuesday! Today I wanted to share with you the purpose of BeWellWellness in a little more detail, but with bullet points (because who doesn’t love bullet points).

First let me give you a little background. It’ll help.

Before this health/wellness site came into existence, I started a personal blog over six years ago. It was a way to document family and personal things with out-of-town family and friends. Blogging was new and foreign to me, but yet I kinda got a thrill being out of my comfort zone so I kept blogging.

Then a few years ago I started a health/wellness blog. It originated out of passion and desire to talk about all things related to health and wellness, because I wanted another outlet to talk about such things- in addition to my day job which was teaching health and wellness in higher ed. Thus, a blog. But at the time, I wanted it separate from my personal blog.

So for YEARS I have been writing on both my personal and my health/wellness blog separately.

Oy vey.

But, as health and wellness goes, it’s personal. At times it was hard to separate the content on the personal blog from the straight health/wellness content on the other blog, because it’s all connected. Plus I wanted to streamline my efforts in one place as well as connect with other women in community.

Therefore while this health/wellness blog (now BeWellWellness) is taking the lead in spearheading this fresh start, as the two blogs are rather (eventually) morphing together. Because the way to gain greater strides in health and wellness is with solid, trusted information/knowledge along with a community of support and encouragement. And that’s what this is.


See, it has evolved.

And I’m so excited.

So let’s get to some bullet points…

Who will benefit most from BeWellWellness?

  • Those who are health-inspired (or want to be).
  • The busy parent who wants to have an easy and healthy meal on the table for their family.
  • Those who desire to regain clarity in their health and want to feel better about themselves.
  • Busy women and moms who want to form community and connect with others with encouragement, support and authenticity.

What will you find here?

  • You will learn and be inspired to discover ways to enhance all aspects of your personal wellness- body, mind and spirit, and to be well according to your values and priorities.
  • Community and support
  • Easy, healthy recipes and ways to move more despite a busy schedule.
  • Encouragement to be brave, authentic and you in order to overcome fear and persevere towards your goals.

What makes BeWellWellness different?

  • My background, experience, and education (undergraduate and graduate) is all in health promotion, wellness, public speaking, teaching, and people. Yes, my background is people. I’ve worked and taught in higher ed, worked in public health, consulting, k-12 schools, and the community.  #yadayada
  • I’m married to a guy who has earned a spot on Team USA Olympic Team three times- 2004, 2008, 2012. So this brings a unique perspective to the table. We met at the very start of his training so I have been through the entire training and Olympic Games experience(s) as his supporter from the start. He has recently retired as an athlete and we are exploring a very new way of life (without training as an aspect) and last year we moved to a new community 1,000 miles away from where we lived for 13 years (and I’m still adjusting).
  • I’m a mom to two little ones and it’s one of my greatest joys.
  • I know what it’s like to juggle multiple things- being a parent and spouse, working outside the home (full time or part time), while still giving attention to you (self).

So stick around! Visit often! Get new posts sent to your inbox (click in top right corner).

Come back tomorrow for something new!

Thanks for stopping by!

January 9, 2017

New Site Design!

Ta-da!! A new site design!

New year, same me, but new design and more plans for creativity and connectedness with you! For some reason the new year prompted me to freshin’ up things on here and start cranking out my goals that I’ve been planning.

The funny thing is that it may seem like I’m a week late to this whole ‘new year’s fresh start.’

“Uh, the new year started about 1 1/2 weeks ago.” Yeah, I know. But here’s the deal- spring semester officially starts today with teaching my classes (and since my life’s personal calendar has been based off of a fall semester/spring semester/school schedule for 30 years), today starts my “fresh start.” I’m not necessarily into ‘new years resolutions’ but I do like the idea of fresh beginnings. For some reason it feels more encouraging rather than commercial. And when the spring semester begins for me, not new years day necessarily, it’s when routines are back in place and we are ‘back at it.’

So welcome to the new site design. Everything health and wellness is here and actually this is just the beginning. Right now you can search by topic, get new posts sent to your email in the top right corner (do that), find resources, search recipes and more. You also may notice that I changed the title and website domain to www.BeWellWellness.com. My social media handles/names are still wellfithappy, but BeWellWellness will encompass many more things.

Because it’s not just about the new site design.

Coming soon there will be even more recipes, a marketplace area, videos, and more. This is just the beginning, we are just getting started. Even though I have been an author, writer, and personal website developer for almost 10 years now (wow!), I have evolved over the years and this upcoming year will be one of my best yet in this capacity- because the goals I have are outside my comfort zone.  I’m excited and confident, and nervous too (read: butterflies).

(I believe the excited + nervous  + butterfly feelings prove to me that I’m growing and getting out of my comfort zone, which- as we know- is typically where “the magic” happens… whatever that magic is). Even after so many years of teaching, I still get butterflies on the first day (so please be thinking of me later today).

As much as new designs, new goals, and fresh ideas are exciting- fresh starts can be daunting. Believe me, I know. Sometimes I feel like I need to have everything in place before I choose to begin something but we all know that those are just excuses.

“I need to have “x” in place before I can do “y.”

“I need to wait until my kids are older until I start focusing more on me.” 

“I need to save up “x” amount of money before I join the gym to get healthy.”

“I need to get a different job before I can focus on my finances.” 

All just excuses. So just begin. Just start. Whatever it is. Whatever you’ve been thinking about and mulling over. “The beginning” may be a different beginning that you expect, but just begin. And keep moving, even if it’s just small steps.

I have goals in my head, these same goals that I’ve written down and that I’ve told people. But I don’t have every.single.thing worked out. And I likely won’t until it happens. But that doesn’t mean I stop and wait until everything is in place (aka perfect) before starting or beginning. Because we all know that nothing gets done when we wait for perfect to arrive. Perfect doesn’t exist.

So today starts a renewed beginning here at BeWellWellness which will evolve, and I’m excited for that. I want to thank you for reading as this serves as a place where people can get ideas, learn, laugh, reflect and discover, and build community with others on their personal journey’s towards health- body, mind, spirit- whatever and however that may look. Yet this is also my square on the internet to be me and only me. I’m not perfect whatsoever and it’s likely that you aren’t either (gasp!), BUT we can still support each other and encourage each other amidst bravery, vulnerability, and authenticity in our personal journey’s.

Again, welcome!


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