The Little Things Newsletter #407 – Life, laughter, and lots of great food!

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Welcome to the weekend, my friends! I’m in Arizona and New Mexico this weekend for a quick visit with family. Go figure that it’s colder here than in Ohio right now. (Yet another thing to add to the abundance of reasons why I love Ohio so much.)

I know that we’re enjoying a false spring and we’re going to have some colder weather in Ohio next weekend, but the flowers peeking through the ground have been making me grin all week.

ON THE BLOGS THIS WEEK: Did you know that you can make creamy, rich, and saucy stovetop mac and cheese from scratch in the same amount of time it takes to cook boxed mac and cheese? And it tastes so much better too!

Clearly, my family really enjoys mushrooms, because we shared three awesome mushroom recipes on the sites this week. If you’re a mushroom lover as well, you’re going to be very happy with these dishes.

Hungarian Mushroom Soup is a lightly creamy, rich soup, full of earthy mushroom flavor that is brightened by a squeeze of lemon juice added at the end of cooking. This is one of my favorite soups – and I just don’t make it often enough! This is a bowl of soup simply ideal for a chilly day.

This Steak and Mushroom Stir Fry delivers all the flavors I crave in a great restaurant steak. Lucky for all of us, that steak has been transformed into a quick stir fry that can be made even on the busiest of nights.

Simple and savory Mushroom Rice comes together as the perfect side dish or serves as a meal all on its own. If you’re any kind of mushroom lover, you’ll be hard-pressed not to devour this skillet of mushrooms and rice entirely on your own. It’s that good!

These Oreo Brownies are rich, chewy fudge brownies filled with generous handfuls of chopped Oreo cookies in each bite.

Two kinds of chocolate and real cream make this the best and easiest chocolate ice cream you can make. The deliciously rich chocolate flavor of this recipe comes from the combination of both cocoa powder and melted chocolate chips.

Pecan Sticky Buns are made with soft sweet cinnamon rolls smothered in a sw

Friday Faves 3.7

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Hi friends! Happy Friday! I hope you’ve had a wonderful week. We are 100% in chaos and construction mode over here, but I’m so excited for the finished product. I’ve been wanting to replace our upstairs carpet for YEARS and am so pumped that the time is finally here! We kept waiting for the “best time” to do it regarding travel, work, dance, and school schedules, and finally realized there will never be an ideal time. So, here we go! We’ve slept on air mattresses downstairs all week; like a big family slumber party 🙂

I’m looking forward to girls’ night tonight and farmers market this weekend, in between putting the house back together. I hope you’ve had a lovely week.

It’s time for the weekly Friday Faves party! This is where I share some of my favorite finds from the week and around the web. I always love to hear about your faves, too, so please shout out something you’re loving in the comments section below.

This week I took an amazing class at Session Yoga foothills. I practiced at the central location for years – especially the last time we lived here – but it’s been too long of a trek to make it out there. I’m so excited to have a studio close by! Tucson friends: use the code FIT to get a free class at Session!

Friday Faves 3.7

Read, watch, listen:

5 things no one tells you about postpartum fitness.

Don’t forget to check out this week’s podcast episode about Ozempic here.

Do TV jobs seem real?

Can’t wait to listen to this!

Fashion + beauty:

Here’s the exciting Beautycounter news: we’re launching PERFUME! This product is 10 years in the making and it was one of the firs

155: Is Ozempic worth the risk?

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Talking about a huge topic today – is Ozempic worth the risk? I’m sharing my thoughts as an Integrative Health Practitioner and Women’s Fitness Specialist. Would I take Ozempic? Would I recommend it to clients?

Here’s what we discuss in today’s episode:

What is Ozempic and how does it work?

Would I take Ozempic, or what would I use instead?

Pros and cons

and so much more!



I’ve been using Nutrisense on and off for a couple of years now. I love being able to see how my blood sugar responds to my diet and habits, and run experiments. You can try out Nutrisense here and use GINA50 for $50 off.

Join us for Fit Team! This is my online fitness community and you can try it free for 7 days.

I love love love the meals from Sakara LifeUse this link and the code XOGINAH for 20% off their meal delivery and clean boutique items. This is something I do once a month as a lil treat to myself and the meals are always showstoppers.

If any of my fellow health professional friends are looking for another way to help their clients, I highly recommend IHP. You can also use this information to heal yourself and then go one to heal others, which I think is a beautiful mission. You can absolutely join if you don’t currently work in the health or fitness industry; many IHPs don’t begin on this path. They’re friends who are passionate to learn more about health and wellness, and want to share this information with those they love. You can do this as a passion, or start an entirely new career.

You can use my referral link here and the code FITNESSISTA for up to $250 off the Integrative Health Practitioner program. I highly recommend it! You can check out my review IHP Level 1 here and Read more

the best shower water filter

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Sharing my review of the Canopy shower filter. You can check it out here and use the code FITNESSISTA15 for 15% off site wide!

Hi friends! How are you? I hope you’re having an amazing week so far. We had to drag our mattress downstairs to sleep on the living room floor while they work upstairs, so sleep has been a little interesting lol, but other than that all is well here.

We’re making some huge improvements around the house for aesthetic and health purposes. When I found out our sofa and carpet both had mold, it was time for them to go. Water filtration is something that you can easily do for your health – I can do a post about my favorite filters for drinking! – but it’s easy to forget about the water you and your family use to bathe.

For today’s post, I wanted to talk about why you might want to filter your shower and bath water, and the best home shower filter that I’ve found: Canopy!

Why should you filter your shower and bath water?

When we shower, the water we use is absorbed into our skin, and we’re also breathing in the vapors of this water, often in an enclosed space. You can check out the quality of your local tap water here. (Tucson’s is horrible.)

Filtering bath and shower water offers several benefits for skin, hair, and overall health, including:

Skin Irritation Reduction: Chlorine and chloramines, commonly used in municipal water supplies, can strip the skin of its natural oils, leading to dryness, itchiness, and irritation. Filtering these chemicals can reduce the risk of these issues, leaving the skin feeling softer and more comfortable.

Mineral Deposits Reduction: Hard water, containing high levels of minerals like calcium and magnesium, can leave deposits on the skin, causing it to feel dry and rough. Hard water also contains various dissolved metals, like aluminum, barium, strontium, iron, zinc, and manganese. Filtering hard water can prevent these mineral deposits, resulting in smoother, more hydrated skin.

Hair Health Improvement: Hard water can also leave mineral deposits on the hair, making it appear dull and lifeless. Filtering the water can help maintain the hair’s natural shine and vitality.

Eczema and Psoriasis Relief: For those with eczema or psoriasis, which can be exacerbated by exposure to certain chemicals and minerals in water, filtering the water can help alleviate symptoms and reduce flare-ups.

Reduced Risk of Allergic Reactions: Some individuals may be sensitive to chemical

Hungarian Mushroom Soup

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Hungarian Mushroom Soup is a lightly creamy, rich soup, full of earthy mushroom flavor that is brightened by a squeeze of lemon juice added at the end of cooking.

This is one of my favorite soups – and I just don’t make it often enough! This is a bowl of soup simply ideal for a chilly day.

Close-up on soup in white mug

Oh. My. Word. How did I forget just how amazing this soup is?? I’ll admit that with over 1800 recipes on this website, it can be a little tricky at times to remember exactly what I’ve made and when, but wow. Just wow. I remembered enjoying the soup, but this has blown my mind all over again.

I remade it a while back to shoot some new photographs and I could not stop eating it. I had a big bowl for lunch and then had another bowl for dinner when I shared it with my family.

I already have it on our meal plan again. This one is going to be in the regular rotation for a while. If you’re a mushroom lover, this soup needs to be on your must-make-as-soon-as-possible list.

Ladling creamy mushroom soup from cooking pot

Our friend Joe was a Hungarian American and he was a gift in my family’s life for over 15 years. He passed away 5 years ago, a few months before we moved to Ohio. We were lucky enough to live across the street from him in Phoenix for a few years and I always tried to invite him over for dinner when I was trying a new Hungarian recipe.

Joe’s parents fled from Hungary when he and his brother were just a few years old. The biggest compliment I’ve