adult(ed) EPISODE 4: WORKING OUT YOUR BODY AND MIND

When I was around 18, I started to work with a movement coach to get more comfortable with moving around on stage. Stepping into it, I thought maybe he’d show me how to handle a mic stand, some simple hand motions, but what I didn't expect was that I would be starting each session with a 30 minute work out. Up until that point, I don’t think I had truly experienced working out. I sort of pinned myself as the non-athletic type which meant working out would probably never be my thing outside of a treadmill. He was the first person to really stress the importance of getting to know, taking care of, and loving my body in that way. It woke me up! How was I going to feel comfortable moving around a stage completely when I wasn’t even fully aware of my body? It really opened up my whole approach to my “why” and I saw how even if you aren’t the “athletic type” taking care of your body in this way was so important.

Let’s Get to Workin’
When we were brainstorming potential subjects for the show, working out came on top pretty early. If you don’t have someone guiding you, stepping into a place like a gym for the first time can be super intimidating. Where do you even start? In this episode of adult(ed), Natalie simplified some ways to work out your booty, legs, and tone your arms just using plates and resistance bands. To check out all the exercises be sure to watch the episode here.

Fuel Up
We didn’t have time to fully dive into all of Natalie’s recipes, but she sent us a list of some of her faves to get your started!

Spinach Pancakes
4 egg whites 
1/3 cup oat flour 
2 bunches of spinach
1 tsp psyllium husk 
2 TBSP pumpkin purée 
5 vanilla stevia drops 
Dash of cinnamon 

Mix in blender. Pour onto pan or griddle.
Cook on medium high and flip around a minute or when golden brown.

Pumpkin & Chocolate Pancakes
4 egg whites 
1/4 cup almond flour 
1 TBSP cacao powder 
1 tsp psyllium husk 
4 TBSP pumpkin purée 
5 vanilla stevia drops 
Dash of cinnamon 

Mix in blender. Pour onto pan or griddle.
Cook on medium high and flip around a minute or when golden brown.

Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies
¼ cup coconut oil
½ cup natural peanut butter 
¼ cup stevia powder by Enzo
2 TBSP ChocZero sugar free maple syrup
1 large egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
¾ tsp baking powder
½ tsp baking soda
Dash of salt
¾ cup cacao nibs

Preheat oven to 350F. In a large mixing bowl, mix together coconut oil, peanut butter, syrup and stevia. Add the large egg and vanilla extract. In a separate bowl, whisk together whole wheat pastry flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Using a wooden spoon, stir the dry ingredients into the wet ingredients. Stir in the Nibs. Roll into balls and fork it criss cross. Bake for 8-10 min. 

MEAL PREP RECIPES 
Turkey Meatballs
2 lbs of 97% Organic Ground Turkey meat
1 TBSP crushed garlic 
Unsalted seasonings of choice 
Dash of sea salt or Himalayan Pink Salt 
2 shredded zucchini (optional)
1 egg white 

Mix it all together and shape into balls then place them on non-stick foil on a baking sheet.
Bake at 385 degrees for 20 minutes.

Apple Turkey Burgers (great for breakfast, too)
Sautée 1 apple with cinnamon and vanilla on a pan with coconut oil spray 
Mix apples with 2 lbs lean 97% Organic Ground Turkey packages with 2 tsp of cinnamon. 
Scoop out into balls and grill or bake at 385 degrees for  20 min. 

Salmon Filet
Lay Salmon on baking sheet in foil enough to wrap it up. 
Squeeze lemon juice, crushed garlic, fresh dill on top. 
Bake at 400 degrees for 20-25 minutes

Sweet Potato Fries
5 sweet potatoes or yams 
Cut up into fries or rounds 
Lay on baking sheet sprayed with coconut oil
Top with cinnamon or garlic spray with coconut oil
Bake at 400 degrees for 30 min.

Butternut Squash
Use
pre-cut or cut into pieces with skin
Lay on a baking sheet of non stick foil or spray with coconut oil
Sprinkle cinnamon on top and spray with coconut oil
Bake at 400 degrees for 30 min.

⭐️Sometimes after it’s roasted Natalie says she will blend it and store it as soup!

Spaghetti Squash
Microwave the squash a minute or so to soften a bit to cut in half. 
Cut in half, scoop out seeds and spray with Extra Virgin Olive Oil spray.
Sprinkle garlic powder and sea salt on top.
Bake at 400 degrees for 1 hour.
Scoop out of skin and store in containers .

Roasted Broccoli
Lay broccoli on tray
Spray with Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Sprinkle on top garlic powder and Himalayan salt
Bake at 400 degrees for 20 min.

You can use the same prep for these veggies with listed cook times:

Cauliflower, 20 min. 

Green Beans, 20 min. 

Asparagus, 10 min. 

How Much?
I absolutely loved Natalie’s simple “high five” method for portioning. All you need is your hand to get a rough idea of your portions.
To break it down again:
Greens- about the size of both your hands
Proteins - about the size of one hand
Starches - make a fist
Fats - pretty much just the tip of your thumb

Fueling Your Mind
There are plenty of videos out there to show you how to work out your booty and some healthy meals you can make, but to me the most important part of this episode was when Natalie dove into mindset. Ya’ll I was getting chills on set! This spoke to me in a way I hope speaks to you. Natalie stressed that our reasoning for wanting to do things like eating healthy and working out should be because WE LOVE OURSELVES. Our relationship with working out and food shouldn’t be looked at as “punishment” to ourselves, but instead should be approached as “I want fuel my body because I value myself”. She also talked about the way we talk to ourselves and “changing the script” we tell ourselves each day because so much of what we say to ourselves in negative. Without realizing it, we begin to walk out the things that we think, so it’s so important to take captive those thoughts and turn them into positive affirmations that we can begin to walk out instead.

Once again, I hope you found something useful to take away from this episode! Thanks for watching, thanks for reading.

We came. We saw. We adulted.

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adult(ed) EPISODE 3: KITCHEN ESSENTIALS

I remember bits and pieces of decking out my first kitchen.  My mom and I went to a Target across the street from my first apartment. I remember getting these cute little red plastic plates and bowls and non stick pans. I don’t think I cooked a single meal that didn’t either come from a box or wasn’t a sandwich prior to that. In fact, I’m pretty sure I was banned from helping to cook Thanksgiving dinner after I managed to ruin a sweet potato casserole and my pie didn’t set. Quite impressive actually how little I knew about navigating myself around a kitchen.  After that first big haul, I continued to collect little things along the way that I realized I would use while cooking. Random things like a lemon squeezer and zester (shout out to Rosanna Pansino for giving my first one in a little baking bundle she gave me). Both of which, I use way more often then I would’ve ever thought.. Even 5 years after my first kitchen deck out, I found myself adding items like a Kitchen Aid Mixer and a Crock Pot to my wedding registry! And trading my little red plates and bowls for some porcelain dinnerware from Home Goods. At least from my experience, figuring out what you may want/need in a kitchen can be a process. My goal, is to help take some of that pressure off and let you know what I learned along the way!

Where Do I Begin?
A good place to start is to think about the types of things you may be cooking and how many people you could be cooking for. Cause you might not need a giant pasta pot for two people or a cupcake tin if you don’t plan on baking. Here are a list of items to help get you started!

Cutting Board
Colander
Liquid measuring cup
Dry measuring cups
Measuring spoons
Mixing Bowls
10 Piece non-stick cookware set
Santoku Knife
Silicone cooking utensils (perfect for non stick cookware!)
Tongs
Baking sheet (great for roasting veggies too!)
Glass baking dish
Oven mits
Kitchen Towels
Dinner Ware
Silverware
Glassware/cups

The Extras
In this episode we spent just under $500 dollars to amp up Madi’s kitchen and that includes some extras like the Keurig (which run’s on the pricier side around $89) and the Lemon Rug. Both very cute, but not essential. Overtime though, you may want to expand your kitchen as your needs change . From the big to the small, the little extra items you may not need at first, but might want to add overtime.

Blender
Kettle
Kitchen Aid mixer
Crock Pot
Toaster
Grater
Zester
Can opener
Lemon Squeezer
Ice cream scooper
Peeler
Whisk
Wine bottle opener
Cupcake tin
Food containers (for leftovers or meal prep)
Spatula Set

Now Where Does it Go?
At the end of the day, there’s no perfect answer as to where everything goes as it’s case by case. I have found keeping utensils as close as you can to the stove top is a great place to start. Either in a nearby drawer or in a cute little container on your countertop. Also, keep in mind where your sink or dishwasher is and the storage close to that. Things like your plates and cups might go near this so it makes for easy clean up. I have found a miscellaneous drawer to be helpful as well for the random items I don’t always use (like our can opener and grater). And when it comes to storing silverware, it’s always nice to have a cutlery tray.

The First Time
Thanks for taking your time to read this post/watch the episode! I hope you found something helpful from it. Before I wrap up, I just wanted to share something about this episode. Even though this is the third adult(ed) release it was our first episode to film! Let me tell you, we had absolutely no clue what we we’re doing , but we had lots of fun making it. I was so thankful to film the first episode with my sister Madison and Brooke who was such a trooper as we figured out what the heck we were doing! It’s crazy to think how far we’ve come since filming this first episode back in November (I know, so long ago!). I really hope you continue to enjoy this series and hopefully learn something new! 7 more episodes to go this season! Any thoughts on what else we might discuss?

We came. We Saw. We Adulted.

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adult (ed) EPISODE 2: THROWING A CLASSY DINNER PARTY

Let’s Get Classy
 I have this love hate thing with the idea of hosting a dinner party. I love the idea of having people over and setting the scene with cute little plates and decor, but what do I feed them? Should there be music on? What about candles? Is that overkill, or fun? At the end of the day, the details don’t really matter, and it’s all about coming together with friends and sharing a meal. BUT it is nice to know that we’re all capable of more than just throwing out a pre-made cheese tray from the grocery store. Which *cough* I totally haven’t done. This episode of adult(ed) made stepping up my dinner party game feel not too out of reach after all.
Let’s dive in, shall we?

Dinner Vibes
One of the most important elements when having a dinner party is creating the ambiance. One way to set that is having the right music to fill the atmosphere throughout the night. I have found that a playlist that’s mostly instrumental easily fills the background in a nice way without getting in the way of conversation . I made a playlist for you to check out for your next dinner party and you can find that here. It’s filled with lo-fi to some modern, jazzy vibes.

The next thing you want to do is set the table. Candles are always an easy way to add some mood. Unscented are usually a good way to go for this, so it’s more about the look than a scent getting in the way of the yummy foods your guest will be smelling. Flowers are a personal favorite of mine to add some color to a table. I found MJ’S note about using smaller vases so you can see your guests across the table super helpful. I even applied this to my Thanksgiving dinner we hosted after filming this episode!

What’s on the Menu?

For Gatlin’s dinner party, we went with Italian cuisine along with a cheese tray appetizer. We got all the food for Gatlin’s dinner party for under $200. Keep in mind, this included flowers which were an extra as well as things for a bruschetta which we did not make in the end (we decided to go with one of Gatlin’s favorites to make - cucumber crostini). This is still a lot, but for three courses and a cheese tray this can be cheaper than going out. Some ways to cut the bill is to split the dishes between friends. Maybe have some of your friends bring a wine or dessert to bring down your part of the bill. However you decide to split that up, you just need to know what’s on the menu! In the mean time, we’ll help you out and share what we made for our dinner including a yummy Apple Crisp dessert.

Here is the grocery list of everything you will need:
3 types of cheeses: 2 semi-hard (Manchego, Edam), 1 soft (Brie, Gorgonzola, Camembert)
Coppa, salami- 1 package each
Red Grapes
Garnishes (See what you have in the fridge/pantry, mustard, peppered jelly, almonds, dried apricots, sliced apple. You have options here and you don’t need them all!)
1 bulb garlic
7 pints colored cherry tomatoes

1 baguette
Olive oil
Balsamic vinegar
Fresh basil
1 package unsalted butter
4 heads of romaine lettuce
1 med. Radicchio
1 small red onion
2 cans (15 oz) chickpeas (garbanzo beans)
6 oz. provolone cheese
Celery
Red wine vinaigrette
(bottle dressing)
3 lbs orecchiette (or penne or fussili or spaghetti)
Grated parmesan cheese
8 boneless/skinless chicken breast
12 honey crisp apples
White sugar
Ground cinnamon
Brown sugar
Old fashioned oats
AP flour
Vanilla bean ice cream
Mint

Now Let’s Get Cooking
Cheeseeeee
Let’s start with one of the easiest parts…the cheese tray! The best way to build your cheese tray is with 3 different types. MJ, our expert for this episode, suggested 2 semi-hard and 1 soft cheese. Then add some salami or prosciutto if you like. From there, she suggested some garnishes you may already have, like mustard. I personally love adding some honey, a fruit like apples, and some almonds to round things up. Finally, slice the baguette into 1/2 inch slices to go along with your cheese board! You may want to have this ready on a tray in the fridge until you are ready to serve it to your guests.

Mix it up
The chopped salad! This might be even easier than the cheese tray.
1. Add the chopped romaine, radicchio, ½ of red onion sliced, celery, tomatoes in bite size pieces to a large bowl.
2. Drain chickpeas then add to bowl
3. Cut provolone cheese into ¼ cubes then add to salad
4. Toss with dressing
The Main Course
Pasta with roasted cherry tomatoes and basil (chicken on the side)

18 cups of halved cherry tomatoes
12 cloves of garlic, smashed
3 Tbsp balsamic vinegar
1 Tbsp oregano (roughly)
1 Tbsp olive oil
3 lbs orecchiette pasta

1. Heat oven to 425 degrees
2. Toss tomatoes in balsamic vinegar, oregano, garlic, olive oil then roast on a baking sheet for 15 minutes.
3. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta. Cook pasta until tender, but firm.
4. Drain (do not rinse) and place pasta in a bowl. Add tomatoes and all pan juices. Toss to combine, season with salt and pepper
5. Garnish with fresh basil and parmesan cheese

Chicken breast
1. Heat oven to 450 degrees
2. Season with salt and pepper, drizzle olive oil. Place on baking sheet, bake for 10 minutes. Make sure to cut the breast in the middle to check if it’s cooked all the way thru. Slice, place on platter. Sprinkle with parmesan cheese and fresh basil.

Dessert! Dessert!
For dessert (my personal favorite) we had a delicious apple crisp, which can be made a day in advance and take some of the stress off getting ready for your party!

Apple Crisp

12 apples, cored and sliced

6 tablespoons of white sugar

1 ½ teaspoons of ground cinnamon

3 cups brown sugar

1 ½ cups old fashioned oats

1 ½ cups AP flour

1 ½ cups cold butter

Sprig of mint

  1. Heat oven 350 degrees (F)

  2. Toss apples (peeled, cored and sliced thin) with white sugar and 1 teaspoon of cinnamon in bowl and coast. Pour into a baking dish

  3. Mix brown sugar, oats, flour and 1/2 teaspoon of cinnamon in separate bowl, then using a fork or pastry cutter, mash cold butter into the mixture. Should resemble coarse crumbs. Spread over apples.

  4. Bake until golden brown and sides are bubbling (about 45 minutes). If your oven tends to get hot, cover with foil.

  5. Serve with ice cream and sprig of mint.

Set The Table
For some reason, I had to learn how to do this in the 3rd grade and I made up a song that’s helped me to this day (and it helped me get an A on the quiz). From left to right - It goes napkin, then fork (I like to put this on top of the napkin), plate in the middle, knife and spoon on the right, then the cup in the right hand corner. But maybe your meal doesn’t require a spoon or knife? Another simple way to set the table is to lay the napkin on the plate with the fork on top. If you find yourself at a loss, pinterest is always a great place to seek inspiration.

Time to Party
Well, I hope you feel a little more confident in hosting your own dinner party! I definitely felt more equipped after this episode. At the end of the day, it’s just something fun to do! Especially as a house warming party or just an overdue get together with friends. Whatever you end up doing, let it reflect you! I would just suggest leaving out the paper plates and napkins and your good to go!

We came. We saw. We adulted.

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adult(ed) EPISODE 1: Customizing Your Rental Space!

My First Place
My first apartment in LA, I had a mattress on the floor, a glass table and two plastic chairs - all from IKEA. I thought I would only be in LA for 3 months at the time, then that quickly turned to 6...then 12 months. Well, eventually I had to do something more with my space to make it feel like home! Being in a rental space, I was limited to what I could do. I couldn’t paint the walls, I was limited to the amount of things I could hang on the wall (unless I wanted to fill all those holes when I moved out), and I didn’t want to spend a whole lot of money on a place I didn’t know how long I’d be in.

Most likely, your first few places will all be rented, as well. So how do we go about making our mark without leaving a mark? I brought in my friend Julie Tecson to help us out with this in our first episode. She is the ultimate DIY queen and a renter herself. It has amazed me to see the creative ways she’s changed up her space and made it her own. All while limited to things like green and pink wall colors she currently can’t paint over.

If you are looking to make some changes to your space, here are some tips we covered in Episode 1!

Add Some Greenery
Adding greenery to your home literally livens it up. I don’t know what it is about having a little potted plant on a dresser or one in the corner of your room, but it instantly makes a space feel welcoming.
House plants can seem intimidating (although we will be talking more about those in a later episode), but if you currently want something more low maintenance here are some great fake plants you can check out.

IKEA Jade Artificial Potted Plant

Nearly Natural Snake Plant

Ahvoler Monstera Palm Leaves

Pure Garden Tropical Yucana Tree 

Keep in mind stores like Home Goods, IKEA, and Michaels have great options as well. You can also get lucky at places like GoodWill, which is where Julie got some of the greenery to create Marissa’s room divider!

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Give Me All The DIYs
I love how many DIYs were incorporated in the transformation of Marissa’s space. It only took copper pipes, fittings, tees, glue, and a copper cutter to create a super simple and stylish headboard! If you want more details on the copper headboard, curtains, or room divider from the episodes, be sure to check out Julie’s blog where she talks all about the process! While you are there, be sure to explore her page to find even more creative ways to personalize your space. She’s got so many great “do it yourself” posts that you can check out!

Command Hooks Are Your Friend
Command hooks really come in handy when it comes to finding a non-damaging way to hang things in your rental space. I thought it was so creative how Julie made a make shift curtain rod with dowels and command hooks! Make sure you read the directions when utilizing command strips/hooks. We didn’t cover this in the episode, but usually there is a waiting period before you can hang your item on them once they are placed on the wall. Trust me when I say, be patient and wait the 30 minutes or hour (whatever it suggests) because I’ve gotten impatient and broken things this way because it wasn’t ready to support it.

Don’t Break The Bank
Remember, there are so many creative ways to bring updates to your space all while keeping within a budget! You can freshen up an old dresser with new hardware. You can keep an eye out for sales and snag a cozy rug for under $50 dollars. You can order prints of your photos and find frames at thrift stores. Even adding a pop of color with some pillows can transform a space! Keep in mind too, you don’t have to reach perfection overnight (even though we all want to). You can always tackle it one corner at a time as you customize your space! I still have to remind myself of this because there is so much I want to still do in our home. Enjoy where you are and enjoy the journey of creating.

We Did It
I’m so happy episode 1 of adult(ed) is out in the world! I hope you were able to learn something new. I know I did. We got 9 more episodes coming to you this season so be sure to keep checking back as we tackle this whole grown up thing one subject at a time.

We came. We saw. We adulted.

Megan

Happy 1 Year "My Kind of Party"!

I honestly can not believe it’s been ONE YEAR since I released my EP “My Kind of Party”! Honestly, there are still so many music videos I want to make from those songs. The songs from this mini album quickly became some of my favorite ones to perform, especially “Take Me Back”. I absolutely love how funky that one gets and kind of just want to make an entire funk inspired pop album because of it. If I had to pinpoint one song though it would have to be “Clueless”. The lyric is so simple, but it completely wrapped up everything I felt at the time into one simple word. Every time the chorus hits, it just feels right. I don’t think I’ve wanted a song to be heard by as many people as possible than with “Clueless”. When it comes to playing the songs acoustically “Favorite One” is my favorite one (sorry lol) to perform stripped down. “Checklist” is easily one of my favorite music videos I’ve done and “Nothing” (the only song on the EP I didn’t write) will forever be so special to me. From the moment it was first played for me in Keith Harris’s home, I knew I wanted it to be my voice who shared the story. I have to say, even though this EP wasn’t being blasted from every car or massively known, it’s one of my favorite little pieces of pop I’ve made to date and I’m still proud of it. Even the title track “My Kind of Party” has some melodies I will always love.
Thanks for listening. Thanks for watching. Let me know your favorite songs from the EP!

I'm on TWITCH!

So we FINALLY created a twitch account and it hasn’t even been a full week of streaming, but I’m absolutely loving it. Cooper and I have talked about this for over a year and we finally did it. We still have so much to do (we barely put up a profile picture yesterday), but it's fun getting to share my love of video games as well as play some live music on stream. Come join the party!