Trend-Spotting: Shorties!

2015_01_26_shorties (2)Snow may be on the ground, but we’re thinking spring! With tons of new shoes, bags and accessories arriving in our warehouse each and every day, we’ve already been dreaming about warmer, sunnier times complete with cool drinks, patio lunches, skirts and colorful flats galore.

We may be a little overzealous and dreamy right now, but we are surrounded by feet upon feet of snow up here in Boston. Something’s got to keep up our spirits, right?

For something a little more realistic, we’ve turned to shorties – the newest spring trend in the worlds of both fashion and comfort. Adorably paired with skinny jeans, dresses and tights, or skirts, these booties are incredibly versatile.

We’re loving the different styles, accents and colors utilized by a variety of brands so far this spring, each adding their own flair to the new trend. Fly London’s brilliant new colors stay consistent with their comfort footbed, Pikolinos’ beautiful leathers work perfectly in a shorter silhouette, and Kork-Ease maintains their retro flair in a shorter design.

Some of our most gorgeous styles include:
antelope short bootsDromedaris Short BootsDansko Short BootsRemonte Short Boots


Spring Step Short BootsMinnetonka Short BootsJuil Short BootsTimberland Short Boots

 

 

 

 

Which shorties are you craving this spring? How would you wear them? We’d love to hear your thoughts on this new trend!

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Celebrate Valentine’s Day with Healthy Stuffed Red Peppers!

Mediterrean-Stuffed-Quinoa-Peppers_thumbIt’s that time of year again… Valentine’s Day is around the corner! Whether you’re celebrating with a spouse, partner, family or friends, we say there’s always room for good food on any holiday. Why should Valentine’s Day be any exception?

Of course, our definition of good food isn’t just deliciousness… it has to be healthy as well. It’s important to feel your best the whole year through.

We’ve found this awesome recipe for Mediterranean Stuffed Red Peppers, filled with a variety of yummy veggies and tons of protein from the lentils and quinoa stuffed inside. The red color is just enough for us to celebrate this holiday of love while not being cheesy (however, there is some actual cheese in these though… yum!). Plus… red peppers are just delicious!

Grab the ingredients below, and head on over to Making Thyme for Health for the instructions.

INGREDIENTS
5 large (or 6 medium) bell peppers, sliced in half lengthwise
2 cups cooked lentils (1/2 cup uncooked)
1 and 1/2 cups cooked quinoa* (1/2 cup uncooked)
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 yellow onion, diced
8 cups spinach leaves
1 (14.5 ounce) can of fire-roasted tomatoes
1/4 cup fresh dill, finely chopped
1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
juice of 1 lemon
6 ounces feta cheese
salt & pepper to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil

Again, you may find the full instructions here.

About Making Thyme for Health
Sarah is a vegetarian food blogger who creates simple and seasonal recipes. She loves cooking with whole foods that give her the energy to keep up with a busy life (perfect for all of you!). Read more about Sarah and try some additional recipes here.

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60 Seconds to Improved Health (Really!)

60secondsWhen it comes to your health, every little step counts. One extra minute of cardio, 30-seconds of deep breathing, an extra five minutes to make yourself a healthy meal instead of a microwavable one… all these small steps come together to create a healthier, happier you.

Tackling your biggest health woes, from eating to exercising, can feel daunting. The fact that there’s always room for improvement can make starting feel like a difficult task. However, what if hitting those goals could start with just one minute a day?

Incorporating the following ideas into your day – a total of only 10 minutes of time – can work to begin improving your happiness, health and general well-being. Which one will you try first?

8ab4d2c85be483ddb58f451f344d8d70Turn off the TV
There’s always a better option than sitting in front of the tube. While a bit of tv-watching can help with relaxation, studies show that watching lots of the stuff can lead to more snacking. Plus, that’s time you could be using do to quick at-home workouts, cook a delicious healthy dinner or read an absorbing novel. The opportunities are endless when you turn off the glow!

Bask in the yellow rays
Sometimes all the brain needs to be stimulated is a little natural light. Open the shades, stand near the window or go for a walk to grab the brightening effects of a little extra vitamin D. The fresh air has also been proven to promote creativity and happiness.

Wash your hands
Especially important during the winter months, with rampant colds and flus galore, washing your hands only takes thirty seconds and is vital to your seasonal health. You never know what germs you pick up during the day, so wash your hands (and don’t forget to moisturize!) as much as you can.

Stretch it out
As you may have seen, sitting all day is wreaking havoc on our health. One way to combat the effects of an office job? Stretching! Taking a minute to stand up and stretch every hour is a great way to keep your muscles working and engaged.

Drink more water
How much water do you drink per day? The way we see it, the more the better. Water is the perfect tool for flushing out toxins while keeping your weight down, skin clear and mood up. A couple minutes a day devoted to drinking a glass of water and you’re instantly on your way to better health!

4aa456ad701ff67ebc6dc94ff5bbb63eFloss, floss, floss
While it may be well known that flossing prevents the buildup of tartar and plaque to keep teeth gleaming and white, studies show that developing this easy habit may help prevent more serious ailments, like heart disease. Place your floss in plain sight, like right next to your toothbrush, so you’ll never forget.

Add spices to your meals
Investing in a good spice rack is a necessity for anyone exploring and attempting to cook some delicious meals. On top of this, adding and experimenting with spices adds flavor to your food without needing additional salt, fat and sugar. They even add antioxidants to keep you feeling healthy and fresh.

The One-Minute Workout
No time to fit in exercise today? No problem! On your busiest days, find a minute to hop on the ground and do a couple minutes’ worth of sit-ups, planks or push-ups. A little bodyweight training can go a long way towards a stronger, leaner, toned you.

Text a friend
Studies show that catching up with your friends isn’t just fun… it’s good for your health. The Australian Longitudinal Study of Aging found that those seniors with “the largest amount of close friends outlived those with the smallest amount by 22 percent”. Calling up an old friend may just be one of the easiest (and most enjoyable!) ways to improve your health.

What one-minute steps do you take during the day to improve your health? We’d love to hear your ideas! 

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We’re Getting Ready for a Storm… with Our Best Snow Boots!

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We’re getting ready for one of our first big snow storms of the year coming on Saturday (I know… we’ve been lucky so far!), which means getting our snow boots, heavy jackets and shovels at the ready. We’ve enjoyed our riding boots this year for far too long…and Mother Nature is ready for us to get our heavy boots on.

Thank goodness for our favorite brands—Pajar, Kamik, Khombu, Baffin and Icebug—for keeping us so protected this year! Their rubber, shearling-lined and shielding boots keep our feet warm, dry and comfy all winter long. And in a variety of colors, styles and materials, there are so many boots to fit every shape and sense of style. Check out our best boots from our awesome highlighted brands… we promise you’ll love their protection, warmth, and fashionable aspects.

In the meantime, we’ll be up here surviving our first storm… what are you up to this weekend?

Pajar
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Kamik
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Khombu
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Baffin
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Icebug
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Which boots are you dying to try out for all your snow-time adventures?

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How to Become a Morning Person… Easily!

28c74dc19d35ed56dc1f2027cc2eea76Sometimes that snooze button is just so welcoming.

But if you hate getting up in the morning… why do it over and over again by hitting snooze? That grumpy feeling you get when you first wake up to your alarm doubled (or tripled… or quadrupled)? No thanks.

The world’s top CEOs and most successful people are known for utilizing their mornings as a productive, insightful time rather than a cranky, unfortunate one. Yes, some people are naturally “morning people”, waking up early without much effort, and others are not. However, if so many successful people do it, it seems that waking up early may be more of a habit-forming exercise than a natural inclination in many cases. What’s the best way to form such a habit? Learn to enjoy it.

Instead of hitting the snooze button three times per morning, learning to get up with that first alarm can set a positive, enlightening tone for the rest of your day. These ideas can make it that much easier, and once the habit is formed, you’ll enjoy the extra time in your day so much more!

How To Make Getting Up Easier
Adjust your bedtime. The key to not being super groggy in the morning? Go to bed earlier! Most adults need 7-8 hours to stay healthy, so calculate back from your wakeup time and try making it a priority to get into bed at that hour. Stick to the plan for a couple of weeks and it should eventually just become routine.

Experiment with your alarm clock. While some may be able to wake up easily to the sound of waves, others may need a blaring beep to get their mind activated. If you have a lot of trouble getting your feet from the bed to the floor, putting your alarm clock on the other side of the room may be just the trick you need. One of our favorite ideas, especially for winter, is a gradual-light clock. When waking up before the sun has risen, these alarm clocks mimic natural light, gradually lighting your room up to full brightness at your set wakeup time.

Plan out your motive. What most motivates you? If you feel amazing when you exercise, planning out workouts for the time when you first wake up may be the perfect motivator for getting out of bed. If reading the paper and catching up on news soothes you, plan that out for your morning. Waking up knowing you’ll be doing something you enjoy makes getting out of bed that much easier.

good morning

What to Do Once You’re There
Some of the world’s most successful people benefit from productive mornings. Doing these four things before the sun rises could be the key to self-betterment.

Plan and strategize. Taking a couple key minutes to plan out your goals for the day could help keep you insanely productive the entire week through. Map out your successes and failures from the previous day, strategizing how to overcome potential obstacles and prioritizing your most important tasks.

Connect. No, not necessarily via social media. If possible, take your extra time in the morning to connect with the ones you love – roommates, your spouse, or your kids. As the day goes on, things can get in the way of spending quality time together, while first thing in the morning, all you have to focus on is each other.

Make a healthy meal. Starting the day off with a proper mix of protein and carbs is guaranteed to start your energy off right. Eight hours of sleep leaves your stomach naturally empty, so fueling up is a vital part of starting a successful day. Try Greek yogurt with homemade granola, eggs and toast or some yummy peanut butter protein bars.

Prioritize exercise. Whether it means going to the gym, popping in a workout video or going for a nice morning jog, fitting in a workout before the day starts guarantees that nothing will get in the way as the day goes on to distract you from your fitness goals. Some of the most successful people in the world start their day with a workout, proving both the physical and mental benefits of sweating it out first thing!

Get caught up. Extra time in the morning can give you just that little bit of extra time to read up on the news you enjoy. Starting the day out with a general idea of what’s going on in the world around you can bring you more in-tune with the emotions, events and people you encounter throughout the day.

Do you wake up early? What do you do in the mornings? We’d love to hear your thoughts! 

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How to Protect Your Winter Boots

GS37314_01Up here in Boston, we know the difficulties snow can cause. Three-hour commutes home in a surprise snow storm, the need to bundle up in your hat-gloves-scarf-coat-socks-boots combo every time you leave the house, and, perhaps most importantly, the havoc the wet stuff can wreak on your shoes.

When snow and ice comes around, cities and towns result to sand and salt to protect us from slipping and sliding. While we 100% commend the safety aspect, this mixture, combined with wet roads, tends to be bad news for leather and suede winter boots.

We believe in buying truly quality footwear, which oftentimes comes with a higher price tag. It’s so worth the price to keep your feet healthy and comfortable… and is also so worth taking care of them. Not to fret, though. There are a few steps you can take to easily winter-proof your boots before you head out for a day of slush and snow!

Pre-Winter Prep
Invest in a good waterproofing spray, like this Rain & Stain Repellent, to keep boots fresh and happy all season long. Be sure to apply a couple times per season, as like most moisturizers and repellents, the effects can lessen with use. First, take a damp cloth and wipe off all residue, dirt and grime from boots. From there, fully cover the boots with the repellent spray, rubbing in a circular motion to avoid any streaks.

It’s also smart at this step to start building your at-home boot-care toolkit. Grab baking soda, leather conditioner, leather polish, anti-bacterial spray and an eraser to add to your repellent to keep all types of boots consistently beautiful.

leatherbootsLeather Tips
Conditioning your leather boots with saddle soap regularly will keep their softness and beauty in tact all winter long. This process allows boots to repel water more effectively while standing up for a longer period of time. For those unsightly white rings that develop from walking through salt, sand and snow, utilize a mixture of vinegar and water, lightly dabbing the boots with a damp washcloth. Once the salt stains have disappeared, pat-dry the boots thoroughly. For darker, more stubborn scuffs, baking soda and water will do the trick. Be sure to dry leather footwear in a location far away from a heater or fireplace, as too much heat can crack a dry leather surface.

Suede Tips
Suede surely isn’t the best material to wear out in wet conditions, but sometimes you just get stuck. For dirt and stains, utilize a pencil eraser or a wooden nail file to scuff them out and keep the suede texture in its original state. A clean toothbrush can also work well if the texture becomes flattened. Whether you plan on wearing those shoes out in the elements or not, always be sure to spray with protectant before the winter season starts. You never know when a surprise snow squall will hit!

In order to avoid all of these issues, be sure to prep your boots as the winter just begins to settle in by adding conditioner and repellant to their surfaces. Better yet, focus all you can on investing in some great rubber snow boots… they’re sure worth it!

 How do you protect your shoes in the winter months? We’d love to hear your tips! 

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