A great pair of socks serves a useful purpose: they keep your feet warm, dry, and happy despite the temperature. While we tend to relegate them to a bottom drawer during the summer, our best socks come back in full force in the fall, ready to keep our feet in comfortable condition.Continue Reading
With December slowly creeping up upon us, the time approaches when many begin reevaluating their goals and creating new ones for the new year. Creating goals is an admirable, oftentimes effective way to accomplish your desires and become your best self.
However, many times New Years Resolutions aren’t as successful as we’d like, as they sometimes require an abrupt lifestyle change that can be difficult to stick to. Sometimes the goals are too big, while others are too small or untargeted to be effective. We’re advocates, therefore, of creating consistent (daily, weekly, monthly), measurable goals that move in more of a constant, rather than linear, motion.
That said, around the holidays especially, it can be difficult to stay motivated. Happiness, time with loved ones, and a busy schedule can throw you off your routine. How exactly, then, can you stay motivated?
- Write down why.
What are your main motivations behind accomplishing your goals? Think them through and write them down on a piece of paper or in the Notes on your phone – somewhere that’s easy accessible. When you find your motivation faltering, go back to the list and remember the inspiring reasons behind your goals. Take some time to write down your typical excuses as well; go back to them when you’re feeling especially unmotivated.
- Reassess quickly.
Check in on both successes and failures in the beginning stages of working towards your goals. Acknowledge the baby steps you’ve made, and where you’ve fallen back a bit. What’s motivating you most to get ahead? What led to a particular setback? Schedule weekly check-ins in your calendar to never miss a reassessment.
- Inspire yourself.
Pump yourself up. Getting ready to go to the gym? Create an up-tempo playlist. Making your way into a good book? Put on a soothing playlist with inspirational gems. What inspires you? Once you understand this, make a point to do this activity before each gym session, meet-up, painting session, meal, and more.
- Link your goals to what you enjoy.
Looking to work out more, but can’t get off the couch? Want to get out and meet more people, but are really feeling your bed? Make plans that link what you love to what you want to accomplish. Grab your favorite book to read on the treadmill, go to your favorite local restaurant to meet people, etc.
- Offer yourself incentives and rewards.
Accomplishing your goals should be enough of a reward, but sometimes additional rewards can act as extra motivation. Take a step forward? Put $5 in a jar. When the jar is full, go on vacation! If money motivates you, try the Pact app. Every workout makes you money, and with every skipped workout, you pay others. Incentives can also work; even something as simple as putting an annoying alarm clock across the room to force you to get up and accomplish your goals can incentivize you enough to get out of bed!
How do you stay motivated, despite how busy you are?
There are so many great ways to give back during the holidays. Whether it’s donating food to your favorite charity, serving a hot meal at a soup kitchen, or spending an afternoon playing with a group of children in need, opportunities to do your part and spread joy during the holidays are abundant.
It makes sense; during the holidays, everyone is in giving mode. This makes it the perfect time to align your passions with a good cause and give back to those in need in any way you know how. One simple way to do good all holiday season long? Go green.
Going green benefits everyone, making the world a better, healthier, more ecologically sound place one small step at a time. As with all giving, every little bit counts. So how can you start?
Firstly, green your gift shopping. Shop locally to cut down on miles traveled (this saves on energy and emissions) while supporting your local economy. Look for gifts made with eco-friendly, recycled materials, or those made in a certified fair trade manner. Alter your gift-giving by focusing on gifting experiences over things; your friends and family will love a night on the town with a significant other, a trip to an eco-lodge, or a pass to ten spinning classes. These gifts cut down on the materials needed to make a product, and still make amazing presents.
Secondly, green your gift wrapping. When you’re shopping, bring a reusable bag to cut down on paper; alternatively, take only the prettiest bags, that you can use to wrap your gifts. On that note, try using gift bags over wrapping paper; these are much more likely to be reused than simply thrown way. Wrapping a nice bow around a gift box (and keeping it unwrapped) is another cute option. If you’re looking to go the wrapping paper route, look for products made with recycled paper and soy-based ink; unlike traditional wrapping paper, this type can be recycled after the holidays are through. Come January, find a place where you can tuck away gift boxes and bags for next year.
Thirdly, green your home. Choose natural décor by bringing the outdoors inside; branches, pine needles, berries, fresh fruit, and evergreen boughs make for beautiful decorations. After the season is over, simply throw them in the garden or compost bin to lessen your environmental impact. If you’re cooking Christmas dinner, be conscious of how much food you’re making and purchasing in comparison to your guest list to reduce food waste. Traveling away from home this holiday season? Turn down the heat, turn off Christmas lights, and unplug all appliances before leaving. The energy and cost savings are well worth the extra time!
How do you stay green during the holiday season? We’d love to hear your best tips!
Would you believe us if we said that bringing a healthy, drool-worthy, filling, flavorful lunch to work every day can be super simple? It’s true, we promise!
All it takes is a little creativity, the ingredients you have in your cabinet already, and a mason jar or other single-serving container. You also need to be willing to experiment with flavor – perhaps dealing with a few bland days – to find your perfect lunchtime meal. So how do you start?
Step one: grab your jar. Then peruse your veggie drawer, your pantry, and your canned goods. What do you have that needs to be used up soon? Grab that off the shelf. As you’re going through your cabinet, keep the following basic ingredients in mind:
Find a Base
This is the part of your jarred lunch that’s going to keep you the fullest, so choose carefully. Our favorite bets? Cooked quinoa or other high protein grains, soybeans, lentils, black beans, chickpeas, or pasta. If you use meat as your protein source, this is the perfect time to sautee your meat of choice.
Find a Flavor
Once you add your base to the bottom of your jar or container, think through flavor. Feeling something a bit sweet? Add some coconut milk. Looking for something more soup-like? Grab vegetable broth (or, if you have time, make your own!). Layer on the spices, sauces, and dressings. Go crazy – you can never have enough flavor.
Find your Fruits & Veggies
What produce do you have to use up soon? Sautee some broccoli, roast sweet potatoes or butternut squash, or simply grab some raw raspberries and corn. The opportunities are endless when you empty out your crisper! Out of fresh veggies? Not to fret – open up a can, or grab some frozen ones from the freezer and do a quick sautee. Layer it on top of your flavor layer in the jar.
As you’re compiling these things, keep in mind if you’re going to serve your jarred meal cold or warm.
Step two: Now that you have your ingredients ready, stack them in your jar as high as you can.
Step three: Close the lid, and bring to the office. When it comes to lunch time, simply shake up your ingredients (lid still on, of course!) and dig in. If you went the warm dish route, add a bit of water, some extra seasoning if you have it, shake it up, and stick it in the microwave.
In three short steps, you have an instant salad or soup, ready for consuming at lunchtime. Easy to transport, jarred meals have many benefits: promoting health, decreasing food waste, increasing flavor, saving money, and engaging your creativity. Who knows what you’ll whip up this week!
- Zucchini Noodle Salads
- Breakfast Baked Eggs
- Mango Black Bean Salad
- Lasagna in a Jar
- Asian Noodle Salad Jar
Share your best concoctions on Instagram and tag @planetshoesusa!
There’s nothing better than slipping off your shoes after a long day at the office, running around doing errands, or, during this time of year, after hours of holiday shopping. No matter how comfortable and supportive your shoes are, it always feels good to take them off. It’s the sign of a day accomplished, a to-do list crossed off, and goals reached.
The second best part about this sense of accomplishment? Slipping off your shoes and sliding right into your favorite pair of cozy, warm, foot-loving slippers – especially slippers that offer the same support as your favorite pair of “I could wear these all day” shoes, but with another whole level of comfort due to their sleepy, fuzzy nature.
Here at PlanetShoes, we prioritize slippers complete with arch support, backed by science, quality materials, and last but not least, adorable designs. We’re especially obsessed with Haflinger and Giesswein; complete with cute, nature-inspired animals and designs, they totally fit with the fun of the season.
Many of our greatest slipper brands use boiled wool as their base; complete with medicinal properties and ultimate breathability, these slippers never make your feet too hot or sweaty while still keeping them incredibly warm. That’s because wool releases heat when it becomes damp, unlike regular cotton clothing, which keep moisture in and therefore reacts more slowly to temperature changes.
Many of our slippers also are made with a hard outsole, making it easy to transition from indoor to outdoor comfort. Step outside and grab the paper; take your dog for a quick walk; or even run to the store without ever letting your slippers leave your side.
With so much love and comfort infused into these babies, slippers are the absolute perfect way to give the gift of happiness to those you love most. Give the gift of lazy, snowy Sundays and comfy, chilly mornings with some of our favorite slipper brands:
- Glerups – for traditional, colorful, boiled wool styles;
- Acorn – for a huge selection of styles complete with delicate stitching and ultimate luxury;
- Giesswein – for the finest Merino wool and sustainable styles;
- Haflinger – for adorned accents and personalized gifts; and
- Minnetonka – for affordable, authentic styles.
What do you look for in a pair of slippers? Let us know!
With holiday season quickly approaching, chances are your kitchen is going to get some serious use for the rest of the year. Whether for potluck dinners, full-on dinner parties, or baking holiday treats, the kitchen certainly gets a lot of use once November and December roll around.
If you’re going to be spending so much time there, it makes sense to create some zen in the room. Typically, this involves clearing the space of clutter– emptying out your junk drawer, donating the tools and goods you never use, and evacuating your space of all unnecessary items.
The kitchen, however, is unique. Much of what is typically stored in this room is necessary. While you may use your zester only every so often, it’s still a great tool to have. Your spices may take up a lot of counter space, but they’re totally necessary in the creation of delicious dishes. With so many necessary items, how can you best clear out, de-clutter, and de-stress your space?
Use simple storage.
Single-toned plastic or glass storage containers can do wonders for organizing your cooking space. We are constantly bombarded with stimuli each and every day in the form of marketing and advertising; there’s no need to have it present in your home as well. Take cereal out of their gaudy boxes and pour it into see-through containers. Remove the branded labels from your spices and pour them into metal tins. The more words and labels you can remove, the simpler your kitchen will become.
Embrace vertical storage.
All those spices can take up a serious amount of counter space if placed next to each other. But investing in a great spice rack that stacks your spices vertically can save a lot of space – and looks great, too. Take this approach with all your collections; stack pots and plates, boxed items, or the many tools that inhabit this space. Using this technique will automatically make your kitchen feel emptier.
Set it free.
If there are goodies you literally never use – say, an old pot your mom gave you, that you’ve recently updated – put them in the donation bin. While it can be tempting to save such gifts – nostalgia is a powerful force – these older, outdated, or unused items can take up a lot of space. In an attempt to clear your area of clutter, accept parting ways with those things you truly won’t use.
But keep what makes you happy.
At the same time, not everything in your home needs to have a totally practical use to stay in your newly de-cluttered space. If it’s something that makes you truly happy – say, brings back truly wonderful memories, or reminds you of an amazing dish you made that brought you pride – don’t be afraid to keep it. Your home should de-stress you, and put a smile on your face… and if a kitchen item really does that for you, don’t remove it.
All in all, your kitchen should be a place that you want to spend time in… whether that means filling it with memories, keeping super tidy, or simply enhancing it with the smells of delicious food. Examine your priorities, utilize these techniques, and feel joyous in your home.
How do you keep the kitchen tidy? Let us know your ideas in the comments below!
While many immediately think of turkey as the ultimate Thanksgiving food, we’re sort of obsessed with sides. Thanksgiving is one of the only meals of the year where the sides really shine – when else do you make a meal with so many side dishes to choose from? Between sweet potatoes, homemade cranberry sauce, roasted carrots, stuffing, green beans, and others, veggies certainly have their place at the Thanksgiving table.
This year, we’re getting a little creative with our sides. Sticking with in-season fruits and veggies like those that typically scatter the Thanksgiving table, these recipes are enhanced with unique flavor, texture, and nutrition to really up your Thanksgiving ante. Your dinner guests are sure to be impressed by the unique array of colors and textures you bring to the table with these veggie-based sides.
Better yet, many of these are filling enough to use as a main dish – particularly for the vegetarians in the room. While the turkey may be the star of the show on Thanksgiving, many vegetarians and vegans stay away from the bird and load up on sides. Make them happy – and the rest of your guests too! – by loading the rest of the table with veggie-filled options that infuse your day with nutrition rather than sugar and empty calories.
Complete with filling veggies and grains – sweet potato, carrots, mushroom, cauliflower, quinoa, lentils, and more – these dishes are guaranteed to leave both vegetarian and non-vegetarian guests alike full, smiling, and thankful.
- Sweet Potato Shepherd’s Pie
- Pumpkin Sage Ravioli
- Roasted Cauliflower, Mushroom, and Goat Cheese Tart
- Quinoa Stuffed Acorn Squash Rings
- Vegan Mushroom, Chestnut, and Cranberry Tart
- 5-Ingredient Roasted Carrot Ginger Soup
What unique veggie-based sides do you make on Thanksgiving? Let us know in the comments below – and we may feature them next year!