What I ate on a two day Road trip: Dairy free & Gluten free

As you might know, last month was my sister’s wedding in Connecticut! My husband and I decided the best way to travel was by car so we had to drive from Florida to Connecticut on a two-day journey.


To make the trip even more interesting, Daniel ended up having to go up early and I was left to drive by myself. Of course, I wanted to take on the challenge but also dreaded the thought of being by myself for two days. I was able to persuade myself with the ideas of figuring out what snack to bring, where to stop, and how much coffee I would be able to drink!


To accomplish eating healthy while on a road trip you have to do a lot of pre-packing because when your only option is a gas station, you won’t find many dairy and gluten-free options that won’t upset your stomach.

So for me, it was like a fun game of how many snacks could I find on sale to stockpile before the trip!

My criteria.

  1. They had to be easy to eat in case I wanted to just snack without pulling over.

  2. They had to contain a variety of nutrient wise because I wanted to feel satisfied

  3. They had to be FUN so I wasn’t tempted to indulge, making me feel sick...

So I put my head together and here is what I came up with!

BREAKFAST

  • Collagen coffee made the morning of click here for the recipe!

  • I threw together some chocolate overnight oatmeal the day before and packed it for when I stopped for breakfast.

  • Spoon (This is important)

LUNCH

  • Packaged tuna

  • Simple Mills crackers (I got these for free on a thrive promotion)

  • On the go packs of mustard and ketchup (like what you get free from McDonald's)

  • Baby carrots

  • Fork (this is also important)

SNACKS

  • Hu Chocolate gems and mixed nuts: I was given the chocolate, but you can buy chocolate chips to save some money!

  • Kombucha, two for one special!

  • RX Bars (The best price I found for these is buying a box at Walmart!)

DINNER

· For dinner, I stopped at a friend’s house to sleep overnight, and just ate there. This worked out perfectly because I left early enough to make it each place in time for dinner!  

Stopping for coffee was the only time I ended up spending money and it was a very good choice. I decided to plan out where I would stop for coffee to make it more of an experience than just a shell station cup of coffee. 

 I picked a little place in Savannah the first day and it allowed me to get out and stretch my legs while also picking up a delicious almond milk latte!

The second day of my trip I settled for Starbucks, but only because I didn’t have the time to stop for anything more. I stopped the second day in Washington D.C. and had the opportunity to visit the holocaust museum. I wandered around for almost 2 hours before realizing it was probably time to go.

Overall the trip offered deliciously cheap food, a free museum, high-quality coffee, and maybe a few unexpected tolls...

*Note to self! Always choose no toll options for going through New England… 

Let me know your favorite travel snacks, or how you would switch up the menu!  

Thank you again for stopping by! 


Love always, 

Sonya 

test1 (17 of 53).jpg

How to Make a Workout Routine and Stick to it!

test1 (2 of 10).jpg

I don’t know about you guys, but when it comes to fitness I can kind of be all over the place. Creating a schedule is hard and sticking to it is even harder.

test1 (5 of 10).jpg

I always wonder why there seem to be certain people who can hit the gym like a beast, train for a marathon, accelerate in sports, etc. while others have a hard time even imagining an activity that doesn’t involve sitting down…I used to believe that it was ONE thing that physically active people did differently and I tried extremely hard to figure it out. I figured that if I could understand the one thing everything else fitness wise would fall into place. As you can probably guess, I have come to realize that there is no single element that can do this.

test1 (8 of 10).jpg

After all this digging and searching, I finally figured out fitness was all about a combination of choices working together to create the best results. Basically what you are doing is setting yourself up for success. For example, if you want to work out in the morning you could just set your alarm to wake up early, but neglect to go to bed early choosing instead to have dessert number three. The outcome of these three choices are obvious, so why is it so hard to see these on a bigger scale?

When it comes to working out and staying in a routine what matters are the choices you make outside of working out. It depends on the people you surround yourself with, what you believe you can do, how you fuel your body, the boundaries you set, and the food you use for fuel. Since these things are so important and I have found an interest in figuring myself and how I am motivated here’s a little example of how to figure out what works for you!

THINGS TO KNOW

• Early Riser or Night owl?

I have most of my energy in the morning therefore if I make sure to get to bed on time and set my alarm early enough I can smash out a workout, do my meal prepping and get ready for my day all before 9am. If you’re not an early riser then go for a schedule where you’ll be most energetic and excited to workout. Exercising should feel like a treat, not a punishment so work with whatever internal clock you have!

• What drives your motivation?

I tend to be more self-motivated, but a large part of what motivates me is other people. I can easily do my workouts no problem, but there’s not the intensity or drive to finish what I started unless I know someone is counting on me. I know that if I start a program I am more likely to finish if I do it with another person. Because of this blog, I make a conscious effort to make my workouts happen because I know it can be a source of motivation for someone else. I don’t want someone to feel less, to do less, to believe in less all because I helped them put a cap on what is achievable.

• What food makes you feel your best?

We all know about the trending low carb-high fat diets out there and I am not knocking them, but what I am saying is that each body is different. I have seen people who thrive off of carbs, who eat a perfectly balanced diet, who don’t incorporate many vegetables, who rely on proteins like sardines, etc. You don’t have to eat what everyone else is eating to feel your best. It’s great to observe, obtain new ideas and try new things with some inspiration from other people, but you are you! Try testing out different things and record how you are feeling throughout a workout, or even if you had the energy to even start the workout. I always know something is off when I wake up in the morning groggy and without any energy to work out because I know that’s now what my body is used to doing.

• What workouts haven’t you tried?

For a long time, I focused on running, running and more running. Running is an excellent workout, but it’s like only ever eating chicken, or only wearing the color blue. None of these things are bad, but you end up missing out on a lot that can really add so much value. Instead of investing all your time into one workout, try switching things up. You might feel great after a run, but what about a HIIT workout? You might hate weights, but why not try resistance bands! If you have a hard time getting yourself in a gym, why not try a dance class? Working out is kind of like taste testing. Not everything will be for you but if you find a favorite that helps you incorporate every part of your body!

Let me know how these tips shape your workout routine!

Thank you again for stopping by!

-Sonya

How to Find Time to Rest with a Busy Schedule

Recently we have had a lot of coming and going of guests in our home. Squishing as many as 5 people in our 600ft studio apartment!

test1 (2 of 13).jpg

We have had late nights chatting and movie watching as well as early mornings whether it be for work or adventuring.

The last few days I have been feeling the exhaustion creeping in as I started to learn more and more on coffee and chocolate every day to keep me going. Not to mention my extremely extroverted self was slowly turning into an introvert.

The problem is that I spread my time and energy way too thin. Today everyone went home and I completely crashed. The feeling of sleep exhaustion, dehydration, whacked-out hormones, and sore muscles had me in bed for a nap at noon and fell asleep for over two hours! My husband has even taken a siesta today, and when we both need a nap you know we are tired.

So here I am re-evaluating how I approach the rest of this awesome summer and realizing that what we need in all the busy and exciting times is to slow down.

SO how do we slow down during one of the busiest seasons of the year? Well I totally get it, you have kids, you work all the time, have school, or maybe you're doing all three! Life won't stop for you, so you have to take responsibility for finding the time and ability to slow things down. Even though slowing down is important, it’s hard to know where to start, so here are a few tips to help you answer that question for your own life.

First of all, you want to begin to think about the time-wasters in your life. And by time-wasting, I don’t mean sleep! I mean mindless activities like social media that drain our time to rest and regroup in our day to day life. I am not saying that you have to go to the extreme and cut out all social media because life doesn’t work well on extreme restrictions. You are more than likely setting yourself up for failure when you have extreme restrictions and this doesn’t actually solve the problem of creating solid boundaries in life. There are things you can do like set times on your social media apps or leave the checking of social media for specific times of the day, away from bedtime when you are supposed to be taking time for yourself to rest and recover. What I do is set a 30-minute reminder on Instagram since its what I am on the most. Then over the course of the day if I have spent 30 minutes on Instagram it lets me know. It doesn’t shut off the app but is a simple reminder as to how much time is spent there. When I first started my average time on just Instagram was almost 2 hours a day, but now it has gone down to about 55 minutes a day! This is just a small example of how just becoming aware of time wasters we can cut back on to regain time to rest.

My second piece of advice is to recognize where you often say yes even though saying no would benefit both you and your family. Usually, these are fun activities or events that when you have energy sound great, but at the end of a long week are more taxing than anything. It’s hard to say no to something that is fun like a night out with friends, or a day spent at a theme park with your kids. These things aren’t a bad thing to have in your schedule, but we need to remember the importance of having a weekend or day off for rest and recuperation.

Lastly, I want to talk about asking for help. For me, this is very relevant because I hate to ask for something, even if I need it and the person has expressed openly their will to give it. This can be anything from a loved one watching your kids so you can take a nap, asking your spouse to run to the grocery store for milk, or seeing if a friend can cover a shift at work. The worst they can say is no, but more than likely if they love you, they will do what they can to help even if it doesn’t work out this time, it might the next! This is not one of those suggestions where you use and abuse the kindness of others without paying it forward because when you get these moments into rest and recuperate you begin to see the importance of them. Since you are better rested you can take the opportunity to do the same for someone else in need. It is a great opportunity to reach out to others and build stronger bonds as a community when we begin to work together to benefit each other.

SO first we find the time wasters and set some boundaries, we find where we say yes to plans when we should be saying no, and then we learn to say yes please to help from others instead of saying no thanks.

If we can incorporate these little changes into our day to day lives, we will find ourselves rested and able to give more to others around us!

Thank you for checking out my page!

test1 (4 of 13).jpg

Money Saving Tips on Buying Name Brand Health Foods

How to Buy Name brand foods on a Budget!

I don’t know about you, but when it comes to buying healthy name brand food on a budget can be a tad bit difficult without a strategy. Luckily I have worked the last few years as a new wife working on figuring out how to do it!

So here are some of my top tips for buying name brand foods on a budget for you and your family!

test1 (2 of 8).jpg

1. Figure out what your buying options in the area are.

For Daniel and me we don’t live near any of the cheaper health food stored like Trader Joes or Whole Foods so we have to rely on the more expensive grocery Stores. If this is you figure out when they run their specials and make a plan to go in and get out as soon as possible so you don’t get distracted and overspend.

For us, Fresh Market has 2.99 Tuesday where Ground Beef and Chicken Breast is 2.99lb! When this happens we stock up on about a months’ worth of meat so we cut down on the number of times were in the store.

2. Buy your Organic Vegetables Locally!

You can do this for signing up for your local CSA or find your nearest farm stand. This was you are only buying what’s in season so everything is higher quality, it’s usually a lot cheaper then what’s in stores and you're supporting a local small business!

test1 (5 of 8).jpg

3. Buy your Pantry Items Online!

I am sure you have heard of THRIVE Market and Amazon. Both places to find your convenience items, but both can really rob you of your money. This is why I am always careful in choosing what I buy from these stores and always have the mindset of only going on to buy essentials.

THRIVE market has similar prices to Trader Joe’s when it comes to Pasta, anything Tinned, collagen, etc. I try to stock up once a month since shipping is only free after $50 and I find it easy to overspend on unnecessary things. The nice thing about thrive is you always get a free gift worth about $20.

AMAZON, on the other hand, carries one of my favorite brand Anthony’s Goods, and don’t have to spend a certain amount to get free shipping. I also have compared prices and we have signed up for subscriptions for personal care items such as toothpaste and toilette paper.

4. Always Check the Price per ounce!

This is a trick my Dad taught me and it is one of the biggest money savers! There are usually a few different name brands of our favorite products like Almond Butter. Conveniently there all usually a different size with a different price, but don’t just grab the cheapest one possible! The Price per ounce shows you how much you’re actually paying per item. I have seen it where the packaging looks exactly the same size and the price is similar but one will be 30 cents more per ounce! This doesn’t seem like a lot, but it adds up and makes a big difference in the end!

So now that you have all your tools to make buying Healthy Name brand foods possible for your family, it’s your turn to show the grocery stores what you’re made of! And use that extra cash to put towards something meaningful and fun!

Thanks for stopping by!

-Sonya Peacocke

test1 (7 of 8).jpg

How to be Content

I don’t know about you, but birthdays for the last few years have kind of freaked me out. I know, I know, I am definitely still a spring chicken but when you go from the positivity of sweet 16 to the idea of ever being older than 21 it’s a weird adjustment. This happens for a lot of milestone Birthdays and I just wanted to take a minute to talk about it all.

Lately, I have been pondering the fear of aging. We are all fearful of some degree to age, whether it be for our looks, our abilities, our time with family members, etc. Becoming older is the one big thing everyone knows we have no control over and it’s a scary thought.

The problem I have with this thought of not wanting to age is what age gives us. Age offers experiences, children, wealth, friends, knowledge, memories, resilience, and strength. Yes, playing in the sprinkler on a hot summer’s day as a 5-year-old is a magical time of life, but we tend to idealize certain ages, thinking of only the good. We might always think back to the best moments and we often forget the moments which caused us pain. I did run through a sprinkler in the summer, but I also tripped over it and got into fights with my sister and brother over it. We had it easy, but even as a 5-year old I wasn’t content with what I had.

You might say you don’t even realize what you have no matter how old. Every day is truly a gift from God and I believe that when we spend a life in discontentment and worry we undermine Gods plan. He is involved in every small detail and we can’t even begin to see what he does.

I was recently reading Matthew 6:25-34 where the Bible discusses the importance of not worrying about tomorrow. It goes over how if God cares for something as small and insignificant as flowers and birds then he surely will care for us and we are not to worry. As well as worrying, God wants us to be content with what we have! Paul teaches us about the power of contentment in Philippians 4. In verse 12 Paul speaks to the people, saying “I know what it is to be in need and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation.” and Philippians 4:13 he goes on to tell the people “I can do all things through him who gives me strength.”

When our focus is on God we find contentment, security, fulfillment, and peace! When we focus on him, age doesn’t matter because with a content heart and a mind free from worry we will truly enjoy the gift of life that God gives to us every single day, no matter what age you are!

So here’s to a worry-free birthdays and a big BYE FELICIA to social media trying to convince us we always need to have a life that portrays perfection. I’ll leave that to the only one who is perfect in this world!

Thank you again for stopping by, and for being a part of Gods Plan for my life!

-Sonya Peacocke

Prioritizing Health and Wellness

I don’t know about you, but when it comes to health and wellness things usually turn out the best for me when I focus on it as an afterthought in life.  

I know what you might be thinking, because hello Sonya, isn’t health and wellness what you are all about? And to answer the question, Yes it is what my main focus is here and I believe it is my calling from God. The thing is, I believe that when our lives are focused on the right things in the right order, everything begins to fall into place.

Think of your time like a budget, where people often assume the thing they put the most time into will be successful; therefore bringing with it true happiness. There, of course, are several different types of investments, but the one thing that people (Myself included) need to realize is the only way to gain true balance and success is to first invest in your relationship with Christ!

In John 3:30 the bible says “He must increase, and I must decrease.” This doesn’t mean you as a person have to give up on everything brings you joy or makes you feel good. What it does mean is that what you invest in first and foremost in life is God.

verse.jpg

My life did not reflect John 3:30 at the beginning of college when all I truly cared about was getting healthy and fit. It sounds innocent enough, but because I was putting myself as my main investment I began to act as though I was the only thing that could provide happiness in my life. I became so obsessed with obtaining happiness that I became a slave to myself. I stopped eating, was over-exercising, and lived for the high of loose fitting pants.

If you read Proverbs 27:19, it says “So as water reflects the face, so one’s life reflects the heart.” My life reflected a selfish and broken system, a life dependent on self. I believed that in turning to myself and leaving God at the bottom of the list I could make everything right when in reality, my life was a disaster.

In Proverbs 21:2 it says, “A person may think their own ways are right, but the LORD weighs the heart.”  

My ways were not right, and even today I don’t always invest my time properly, but my end goal is to first and foremost focus on the LORD. I know that when my heart is not invested in him, my relationships, work life, and health suffer. 

So the next time you dive into a self-help book, blog, Instagram page, make sure that before working with these tools find out what's going on in your heart.

Thank you for stopping by, If you have any questions please let me know in the comments below or dm on my Instagram handle at @sonyasopencupboard. I would love to talk to you more about the freedom and LOVE which comes from God!

Love always,

Sonya

The Importance of Loving Other

Genesis 1:27 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.”

I don’t know about you, but I tend to take people for granted. I want to be the type of person who calls their mom every day, who meets new people in coffee shops and knows my neighbors. Unfortunately, it’s not the case because more often than not life takes my attention and puts in on things of this world that don’t necessarily matter.

I have a hard time especially getting caught up wasting valuable time on social media. It’s not that you can’t connect with people on social media and I definitely do, but for me, the percentage of time spent on social media actually connecting with people is not half as much as the endless scrolling.

In this life I want to live a life that is pleasing to God, investing time in Him and then People. In Matthew 22:34 talks about “men of the law” who tried to trick Jesus by asking Him what law was most important. Jesus replied in the following two verses that the greatest law is to love the Lord with everything you have and to second love others.

The life I desire is this passage, but in order to do this I have to take a different approach in life. Taking the time to be with God in prayer and in the Scripture, then focusing on observing what other people around me need.

One of the reasons I started this blog was my love of people, and I have to remind myself constantly that even if only one person reads these words and finds them helpful I am doing what I need to be doing. Blogging is an amazing tool, but I am also going to challenge myself to go further and begin to be more intentional with the people around me. To put away my MANY selfish desires, and work on getting to know and love people that God has put into my life for a reason.

Whether or not you believe that Christ is Lord we must do our best to come together and care for one another, no matter how difficult. Things are always being replaced, but the friendship, love, support, laughter of another human is irreplaceable. So let us focus this week on putting down the screens and showing some love to those around us.  

Love always,

Sonya

test1 (6 of 81).jpg
test1 (17 of 81).jpg
test1 (30 of 81).jpg
test1 (21 of 81).jpg