Stay Comfortable and Casual in The Flexx

Screen Shot 2015-04-28 at 9.59.31 PMWhat’s better than slipping on a wonderful pair of flats and stepping out for an adventure-filled, warm spring day? Slipping on a pair of wonderful, comfortable flats! That’s what you get when you first slip on some flats or sandals from The Flexx.

Made from the best Italian materials, The Flexx uses unique “Stitch and Turn” construction that allows these flats to mold effortlessly to even the fussiest of feet. This technology maximizes flexibility and absorbs shock to relieve stress and pressure all day long. This manufacturing method starts when the upper is stitched into the sole and then turned inside out, giving life to shoes that adapt themselves completely to fit the contours of your feet for the most comfortable walking experience possible!

Beautiful leathers infuse these shoes with softness that can’t be beat, and in a variety of eye-catching colors and styles, there’s a pair of shoes from The Flexx for every outfit, activity, and adventure you can think up!

Some of our favorite styles are below, but be sure to check out the whole selection. It’s endless; you won’t even know where to start!

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Flip Flop Do’s and Don’ts for the Spring Season

flip-flop-dos-and-dontsWith warm weather here to stay, we’ve started breaking out some of our favorite shoes: our flip-flops. Freeing and easy, a weekend day is never complete without quickly stepping into our favorite pair of sandals and heading out the door for a day of outdoor fun.

Unfortunately, though, there is a downside to these wonderfully liberating shoes: they aren’t great for your feet. Many classic styles don’t have much arch support or foot stability, making these shoes a bit tough on your happy summer feet.

Luckily, there are a few steps you can take to avoid some of these negative effects. When shopping for flip-flops, take material into consideration; high-quality, soft leather styles are typically better for your feet than classic rubber, causing minimal irritation. Any sort of irritation (especially between the toes) is unacceptable, as blistering can lead to infection. Stability is also important; you shouldn’t be able to bend your flip-flops in half (imagine the lack of support those give you!). When fitting these sandals, be sure your heel doesn’t hang off the edge in the least, or that your toes aren’t hanging over the edge.

In terms of wear, flip-flops should only be worn during casual outings with minimal walking. No matter how supportive, treading long distances, playing sports or doing yard work in these shoes isn’t the best idea. Slip on a pair of casual sneakers or athletic shoes to maximize your enjoyment during these wonderful summer activities. You should, however, be sure to wear these shoes in public showers, at beachside restaurants and parks, and by the pool. They certainly come in handy!

At PlanetShoes, we’re all about the support, so be sure to check out our selection if you’re in the market for some new flops! If not, enjoy the ones you love… it will be impossible not to if you follow the tips above.

How are you enjoying spring in a great pair of sandals?

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6 Amazing Ways to Use a Food Processor

food-processor-recipesWe’ve written previously about some of our favorite parts of the kitchen, from our cookbooks to our best spices and the ways in which we keep this area green. There’s another gadget we have yet to mention, though: the food processor.

This helpful contraption creates some of our favorite meals; without it, we’d simply be lost. It’s an awesome product that serves as the basis for so many of our best concoctions, making each recipe easier (and less expensive) than we ever thought they could be.

Save a bit of money and food waste with the following food processor ideas. If you don’t have one, this post may just convince you to try one out. Even better… each idea for using the processor comes with an amazing recipe to make use of your newly developed skill!

1) Turn your favorite grains into flours
Grains like quinoa or gluten-free favorites like oats can be easily turned into flour with a press of a button. Particularly exciting for those with gluten sensitivities or allergies, simply throw your favorite grain into the processor, press pulse, and a few minutes later you have your very own sifted flour. Try these gluten-free muffin recipes to start, all made from handmade oat flour.

2) Alter your favorite nuts into butters
Almond butter is absolutely delicious and filled with good-for-you, satiating protein, but can rack up a serious price tag if you buy it consistently. Grabbing a bag of almonds (or peanuts, or sunflower seeds) and placing them into your food processor with a bit of oil will turn them into delicious butter you just can’t live without. See this Maple Cinnamon Almond Butter recipe for instructions.

3) Create your own healthy dressings
We’ve shared some homemade dressing recipes here on the blog before, and a food processor or blender is always a staple in these make-your-own masterpieces. Our favorite right now? Half an avocado, the juice of a lime, olive oil and red pepper. Throw into the food processor and you have enough creamy dressing to last you through a couple lunches’ worth of scrumptious salads!

4) Experiment with veggie burger recipes
As you may have figured out, the best veggie burgers are homemade (like most things). To get that smooth consistency of a restaurant patty, food processors are absolutely essential to getting the proper consistency. They also help in making oat flour (see above), an ingredient that works well in helping veggie burgers stay intact. Check out this Lentil Chickpea Veggie Burger recipe for some great food processor practice!

5) Turn chickpeas into hummus
Throw a little tahini, garlic, oil and chickpeas in a food processor and what do you get? Homemade hummus! Experiment with a variety of your favorite flavor palettes, from roasted red pepper to sriracha pumpkin!

6) Puree your favorite chunky soups
Planning a large dinner for your guests that won’t pair well with a chunky soup? Puree it quickly and easier for some lighter fare with a food processor. Take your typical delicious soup and pour into the processor in batches until you have a creamy consistency. This Simple Summer Corn Soup is a great one to try!

What are your favorite ways to use a food processor? Have you experimented with this gadget before? We’d love to hear your experiences!

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Quinoa Superfood Breakfast Bowl

Quinoa_Breakfast_SkilletQuinoa for breakfast? Yes, you heard that right! We typically relish quinoa as an excellent side or main dish for our later meals, loving the small, textured grain for its high protein content and ability to mix with literally any meal we plan. When we saw this sweet recipe over at One Ingredient Chef, we Quinoa_Breakfastcouldn’t believe we hadn’t thought of turning one of our favorite foods into a breakfast treat!

This Quinoa Superfood Breakfast Skillet doesn’t only benefit nutritionally from the quinoa, however… filled with berries, bananas and chia seeds, your vitamin intake increases significantly when you start your day off with this power bowl. The berries contribute fiber and vitamins A and C, while the bananas are chock full of potassium. Chia seeds, on the other hand, are tiny powerhouses of omega-3 fatty acids and protein.

Super easy to make (less than five minutes), this breakfast skillet will have you out the door in no time at all. Anything that makes our mornings a little less hectic is wonderful in our book.

Try it out this week and let us know how you like it! If you’re a fan of this recipe, we recommend trying One Ingredient Chef’s Chocolate Peanut-Butter Oatmeal, a healthy (dessert-like) favorite.

Quinoa Superfood Breakfast Bowl

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For full recipe instructions, see the original post here!

About One Ingredient Chef
One Ingredient Chef is a healthy food blog run by Andrew Olson. His goal is simple: he wants you to become healthier than ever before while cooking the best food of your life. As he says, “The One Ingredient Diet is my simple answer to a world of processed foods. But this isn’t about munching on lettuce! My job is to show you (step-by-step) how to cook deliciously healthy food with only *real* ingredients.”

Connect with One Ingredient Chef
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Creative DIY Garden Upcycles to Save Time and Money

Spring has officially sprung, and you know what that means? Garden season! It’s a great time to begin planting your seeds (or perhaps you already have!), making room for fresh produce, flowers and herbs to keep you nourished and delighted all summer long.

There are so many gorgeous ways to spruce up your garden and make it uniquely your own. From planting creative rows to introducing some exotic veggies, there’s no end to how imaginative you can be with your very own plot of soil.

Rather than buying garden decorations and spicing up your area with store-bought goodies, why not try your hand at a few DIYs? It’s easy (and fun!) to create your own garden accents with items you have laying around the house. Plus, it’s environmentally friendly; upcycling something old into something new and exciting saves those items from going into a landfill.

We perused the internet for some super unique ideas, and are so excited to start in on the ideas that we found this weekend. Which will you choose? 

Use your kids’ outgrown rain boots and a bit of paint to make pretty hanging planters.
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Find a couple matching rocks and some colored sharpies and make some individualized planting markers.
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Use brightly colored spray paint to spice up old, worn pots.
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All you need for these adorable ladybugs are a couple of old golf balls, some paint and a black permanent marker. 

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Give your fence some personal flair with a great mural.
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 Get creative for the birds with this easy popsicle stick feeder.

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How are you planning on decorating your garden this year? Let us know your ideas in the comments below!

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Must-Have Spices for a Delicious Kitchen

Screen Shot 2015-04-20 at 8.57.31 PMIf there’s one part of our kitchen we turn to the most to make our favorite dishes as delicious as can be, it’s our spice rack. Filled with a plethora of flavors and tastes, a good collection of spices is the answer to making any meal feel like a gourmet feast.

From hot paprika to smoky cumin to gentle basil, the flavor combinations are endless when you have a great collection of spices. Many spices even have substantial health benefits, acting as anti-inflammatories or adding some extra vitamins to your system. However, we do understand there’s a downside… buying up a bunch of spices that you’ll only use a couple times can add up to a hearty price tag.

Not to fret! There are a few key spices that should make up any good collection. And if you stick to these seven, you’ll be able to mix and match the flavors to create entirely new tastes. Brilliant!

Cinnamon
Filled with antioxidants, cinnamon is a great addition to your morning fare. Great on oatmeal, yogurt, fruit or French toast, this spice adds a sweet little accent to your favorite breakfasts and desserts.

 

Cumin
This smoky flavored spice goes well with Mexican-inspired dishes. Dump some into a pot of black beans and top with avocado and feta cheese for an amazing, simple flavor combination you’ll become addicted to!

Red pepper flakes
If you like a little spice in your meals, don’t shy away from red pepper flakes. Coming infused with an awesome kick, add these to almost anything you’d love to be just a tad spicier.

Sea salt and fresh ground pepper
Go for the real stuff! Freshly ground pepper and authentic sea salt are two spices you should add to almost every dish to up the flavor ante.

Rosemary
This spice is a total necessity if you enjoy roasted veggies. Paired well with sweet potatoes, add to some olive oil and taste the natural flavors in your veggies come to life. 

Curry powder
A great addition to any Indian-inspired dish, curry powder comes with a unique flavor due to the abundance of turmeric, a spice said to act as an anti-inflammatory.

Dried basil
A necessary addition to homemade sauces, soups, pizzas, and stews, this fresh, herby spice especially brings out the flavor in tomato-based dishes. On top of this, it’s filled with vitamin K, a vitamin powerhouse that prevents blood clots and builds strong bones.

What are your must-have spices? Let us know in the comments below! 

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