Tied to be Fit

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Charlotte and I (OK, really Charlotte) are pretty health-conscious. Two bouts of cancer will do that to a person. 

Exercise is an almost-daily part of our routine here at Boomer Brief HQ. Most mornings the alarm goes off at 5:45 a.m. and she's on the treadmill power walking 4+ miles. 

Me? I hit the mean streets of Colleywood, jar of Grey Poupon in one hand, cellphone tuned to KRLD 1080AM or a Podcast, in the other hand. 

Lord HubbaBubba is always gracious when I lend him my emergency jar of Grey Poupon

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The Grey Poupon is in case Lord HubbaBubba needs an emergency jar. I walk about 4 miles, past the elegant boutiques (Target, Walgreen's) and mansions of the rich and famous (that guy who has a patent on one of the chips that are in every microwave lives just two blocks from us). So we're used to being around famous people.

 


Sheryl Crow's been telling you that for years...

Any good exercise plan starts with a healthy breakfast. Or not. What am I, your doctor?

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A couple of weeks ago Charlotte and I decided to step up our exercise game. We each bought a Fitbit exercise tracker to help us stay motivated and well, just see how much exercise we really are getting every day.

Yes, it's a real product. No, I do not know how it works.

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Did I mention that we're still TYPE A people?

Make a note. You'll see this on the Mid-Term.

Fitbit looks like one of those rubber wristbands that everyone wore before they figured out Lance Armstrong was a big ol' cheater (Hell, Sheryl Crow's been trying to tell you that for years. You people really need to pay more attention.)

The only difference is that the Fitbit wristband is Bluetooth-enabled and it tracks all of your activity - even sleep.

The "0 Active Minutes" should've been your first clue.

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Not. Kidding. 

So what's the problem with that? 

Well, it's turned our daily activities into a competition. Charlotte and I want to know WHO had the most STEPS, WHO walked the most MILES and WHO had the best SLEEP. 

SPOILER ALERT - I am totally crushing it in the SLEEP category.

For the record, I have never run through fire while wearing my Fitbit.

Charlotte is kicking my ass in the MOST STEPS category. But c'mon, any woman who jogs in place while brushing her teeth will beat you every time. It's not even close enough to call it a competition.

 My Fitbit sends me messages like, "Are you still breathing?" "Should I call 911?" and my favorite, "Charlotte had you beat by 9 a.m. Eat another doughnut."

I don't care, really.

I'll keep wearing my Fitbit to keep me focused on being more energetic. If that doesn't work I can always get a yellow Sharpie and write LIVESTRONG on it.

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Here's the Dish: Cream Cheese- and Chicken-Stuffed Biscuits

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Since I'm head cook around our house most weeknights, I stress keeping things simple on Sundays. That's why I'm such a big fan of these delish Cream Cheese- and Chicken-Stuffed Biscuits.... ...Read More

In the Mirror: 15 Favs for Chilly Days

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Bob lives for winter. The temperature has to drop to artic levels for him to go near the coat closet. I'm the exact opposite. Summer is more my season so I grab boots, sweaters and as many other protective layers as possible at the first sign of frost and keep them close till May.

Although covering up helps, cold, windy weather is a real challenge for me. My face gets blotchy, my lips chap and my hands crack. Ouch! That's when it's time for some TLC from comforting favorites like these. They can soothe your skin, lift your spirits and take some of the sting out of harsh conditions.

mens_3in1_light_d_051 225.jpgLet's start with some things even guys like Bob will want before moving on to those that are just for us girls.

Lubriderm Men's 3-In-1 Lotion

What it is: A triple-action formula that hydrates, calms, and improves the look and feel of skin.

What I like: Developed with the help of dermatologists, this face and body quencher is made with nutrients naturally found in men's healthy skin like vitamin E, minerals and essential moisturizers.

Bob has been using it on his horribly dry, cracked hands before bed. Besides removing painful roughness, this hypoallergenic find has a clean, fresh scent that blends black pepper, lime, sandalwood and musk. You know that appeals to my guy's super sniffer!

This light lotion absorbs quickly and there's no greasy aftereffect. It also includes Aloe to soothe skin after shaving, a benefit I'm sure Bob would appreciate if he didn't have that McDreamy beard.

Made especially for guys, this do-it-all hydrates his face and body and soothes his skin after shaving.

On the Shelf: $6.99 for 16 fluid ounces at food, drug and discount stores

Aveeno Skin Relief Collection

What it is: A set of skin soothers clinically shown to help relieve itchy, irritated, parched skin, moisturizing it for 24 hours.

What I like: There's an everyday body lotion as well as a healing ointment to help you say goodbye to dryness. Made with good-for-you oat essence, they're dermatologist recommended, fragrance free and gentle enough for sensitive skin like mine and Bob's.

I like using Aveeno's Skin Relief lotion in the morning right after showering and barely patting dry. (They say that helps trap water into your skin.) With just a little rubbing, this winner disappears and goes to work hydrating my skin with a special blend of three oats and shea butter extract. I don't have to fear it rubbing off on my robe. Plus, it leaves my skin satiny smooth (never slimy) and keeps it that way all day. Ahhhh!

AVEENO Skin Relief Lotion_12oz bottle 211.jpgAVEENO-Skin-Relief-Ointment-3oz 168.jpgRich and thick, Aveeno's Healing Ointment includes petrolatum instead of shea butter to up the moisturizing action. I enjoy using this thick salve at night on my heels, elbows and other areas that are extra dry, chafed, cracked or all three. Although it looks like petroleum jelly in a tube, it soaks in quickly and isn't sticky. It's also great to have around if you have a boo boo-prone loved one because it helps relieve the pain of and shields minor burns, scrapes and cuts.

On the Shelf: Moisturizing Lotion - $9.39 for a 12-ounce bottle; Healing Ointment - $9.99 for a 3-ounce tube at Aveeno.com and food, drug and discount stores

Aveeno's Skin Relief Collection includes an everyday body lotion as well as a healing ointment to help you say goodbye to dryness

Phyto-C SuperHeal O-Live Cream

What it is: A rich cream that helps repair, nourish and regenerate skin.

What I like: Developed by one of the leaders in natural product chemistry, this newbie aids tissue repair, stimulates cell regeneration and firms skin. It also reinforces natural hydration while reducing dryness, irritation and redness. It gets its clout from purified olive leaf extract, which is known for its healing, antioxidant, antibacterial, antiviral and anti-inflammatory benefits.

This multi-talented cream arrived the day after Bob had a doctor's visit involving all sorts of wires that left quarter-size red dots on hOlive Cream 300.jpgis chest. What timing! Using SuperHeal O-Live made a significant difference in those marks in as little as one day. Great for those prone to ugly skin reactions like Bob and me, it feels light and cool, not at all icky, and goes to work quickly. At over $100, it might seem expensive but you just need a dab so one jar can last a long time, even when you share it like us.

On the Shelf: $120 for 1.67 fluid ounces at Myphyto-c.us

SuperHeal O-Live Cream gets it's hydrating and healing clout from purified olive leaf extract.

Dryel

What it is: A process involving a special bag, cleaning cloth and stain remover that uses steam to clean and deodorize clothing in the dryer.

What I like: Although it's handy year-round, I really appreciate this lifesaver when the weather's bad. Before discovering Dryel, I was hand-washing practically all my sweaters, skirts and dresses. I didn't have enough counter space to lay them flat in the house so I'd set them out in the garage to dry, which took f-o-r-e-v-e-r in the cold. That also chained me to my steamer because there was no way to keep those clothes from wrinkling.

But those days are over. Now, I just put our hand-washables in the Dryel bag with a cleaning cloth and toss them in the dryer. 30 minutes on medium heat gives them a deep cleaning. Make that 15 minutes if they only need freshening up. Spritzing on the included stain remover beforehand takes care of any spots. Dryel cleans without harsh chemicals, protects colors and preserves shapes. And I can reduce wrinkling by taking our things out of the dryer as soon as it buzzes ... or having Bob do it!

With Dryel, I can also keep our dry clean-only jackets, scarves, gloves and more looking good as new without leaving the house. (It works on all fabrics except leather, Dryel Starter Kit 167.jpgvelvet, suede, fur, silk and rayon.) That's easy, quick and costs much less than your traditional dry cleaDryell Refil Kit 120.jpgning so the savings can be a real cha-ching!

On the Shelf: $6.99 for a starter kit that cleans up to 10 garments; $8.99 for the refill kit that cleans up to 30 garments at your local Walmart

The easy-to-use and economical Dryel at-home dry cleaning starter kit (left) and refill come in a new package with bright red accents so they're easy to spot.

Aveeno Ultra-Calming Moisturizer

What it is: An oil-free daily moisturizer clinically proven to calm and soothe irritated, sensitive skin.UltraCalm_Monograpg_SPF15_btl 215.jpg

What I like: Light enough to wear under makeup, this comforting lotion contains Aveeno's exclusive Feverfew (a natural ingredient akin to Chamomile) and glycerin to moisturize skin, reduce redness, and help heal bumps and inflammation. It also boasts broad-spectrum SPF 15 protection.

I was ever so happy to have this hypoallergenic pain reliever on hand when my skin took a nosedive recently. I'd gone months with no problems then BAM! I woke up with hideous red splotches that screamed, "You spent too long in the wind!" Even worse, they were under my eyes and practically impossible to hide. Agggg!

Thank goodness, I didn't have to endure that embarrassment long. Aveeno's Ultra-Calming Moisturizer helped my skin feel better instantly. Putting it on after cleansing both a.m. and p.m. had my problems completely under control in about a week. If you're on the sensitive side like me, it's an affordable medicine-cabinet must have.

On the Shelf: $16.99 for 4 fluid ounces at Aveeno.com and food, drug and discount stores

Light enough to wear under makeup, Aveeno's Ultra-Calming Moisturizer helps relieve redness while healing irritation.

Le Mieux Hyaluronic Serum

Hyaluronic Serum 130.jpgWhat it is: A concentrated hyaluronic-acid-based complex that retains 1,000 times its own volume in moisture to provide deep hydration and anti-aging benefits.

What I like: This clear, non-oily serum gives your complexion a mega dose of moisture without clogging pores. Hyaluronic acid acts like a sponge, helping your skin retain water while plumping and preventing fine lines and wrinkles. Nice! It's combined with vitamin E and four powerful botanical extracts that condition and comfort while promoting firm, healthy-looking skin.

You just need a few drops of this luscious, water-thin liquid to do the trick. I've been smoothing a little on my face and neck morning and night after cleansing, toning and moisturizing. It soaks in immediately and leaves my skin feeling soft and smooth without a trace of grease. This second moisture boost has helped me put a stop to annoying flakiness. This serum works for all skin types but is ideal for anyone prone to acne. It hasn't upset my sometimes sensitive complexion and you only need a few drops to do the job.

On the Shelf: $60 for 1 fluid ounce at Myskincarebox.com

This hyaluronic-acid-based, anti-aging formula lets you layer on the moisture without clogging pores and encourages firm, healthy-looking skin. dddddddEye FULL 83.jpgddddd

Scalisi Skincare Eye Cream

What it is: A moisturizing, anti-aging eye cream scientifically proven to reduce the look of fine lines, crow's feet and under-eye puffiness.

What I Like: Designed to protect the delicate skin around your eyes, this intense treatment contains three moisturizing oils: jojoba, macadamia nut and avellana seed. It also includes white tea extract to brighten the eye area, ash bark tree extract to reduce puffiness and soy proteins to assist with cell regeneration.

Talk about a pick me up! This lightweight cream leaves my skin feeling silky smooth while making my eyes look more rested. I adore dabbing it under and along the sides of my eyes in the a.m. because it helps my concealer stay put without drifting into fine lines. I also get a lift from putting it all around my eyes at night. It contains no retinol and is paraben free so I don't have to worry about irritation. And it's been shown to reduce the appearance of wrinkles by 45% in 8 weeks.

On the Shelf: $55 for .5 fluid ounces at Scalisiskincare.com

Loaded with moisturizing oils, this anti-aging eye cream leaves skin feeling silky smooth while making eyes look more rested.

Miracle Skin Transformer Face SPF 20

What it is: A 5-in-1 tinted skin enhancer that hydrates, primes and protects with broad spectrum SPF 20 while evening skin tone and removing shine.

What I LikMiracle Skin Transformer Face 255.jpge: This do-it-all, anti-aging formula packs powerful antioxidants like Saw Palmetto and Passion Fruit extracts that nourish and deeply hydrate skin. It also includes vitamins A, E and D and coenzyme Q10 to fight wrinkles by preventing damage, firming skin and encouraging cell renewal.

Perfect for counteracting winter's drying effects, this clever multitasker lets me continue pouring on the moisture (don't you just love layering?!) while concealing imperfections. I start with a pearl-sized dot, adding more as needed to make my complexion look flawless.

You can select from six shades ranging from light (my choice) to deep dark so it adapts to virtually all skin tones. The coverage is sheer but easy to build and matte so there's no need to reach for powder. In addition to providing get-gorgeous color, this oil-free, dermatologist-tested pick helps diminish dark circles, redness from Rosacea and broken capillaries (including spider veins). Bonus!

On the Shelf: $48 for 1.5 fluid ounces at MiracleSkinTransformer.com, Kohl's, Nordstrom and Ulta

Miracle Skin Transformer's clever tinted moisturizer primes and protects skin while concealing imperfections and tackling shine.

Aveeno Ultra-Calming Makeup Removing Wipes

What it is: A set of soft, soothing towelettes that lift off all types of makeup without irritating sensitive skin.

What I like: These addictive dermatologist- and ophthalmologist-tested wipes whisk away dirt, oil and makeup (including my blackest-black mascara) with no problem. A quick-and-easy way to freshen up, they cleanse and comfort skin with naturally soothing ingredients like Feverfew, also found in Aveeno's Ultra-Calming Moisturizer.

Safe for everyday use as well as for sensitive souls like me, the oil-free formula fights dryness and irritation as well as ugly redness. And, unlike other makeup removing wipes I've tried, these gems come in an easy-to-reseal package so the last toilette stays as moist and effective as the first.

On the Shelf: $6.99 for 25 at Aveeno.com and food, drug and discount stores

A shortcut to clean, these makeup-removing wipes comfort skin with naturally soothing ingredients that are kind to sensitive skin.

UC_MUR_Wipes_ful -NO WHITE BACKGROUND.jpgin lips we trust 131.jpgemerginC in lips we trust

What it is: A soothing cream that nourishes and protects your smile. 

What I like: This extreme lip therapy can come to the rescue when blustery days leave your pucker chapped and peeling, which happens to me all the time. It contains 100% natural, 70% organic ingredients like sweet almond oil, sweet orange peel wax, beeswax, shea butter, coconut oil and hard-working antioxidants (astaxanthin and coenzyme Q10),.

During the day, I like using this clear formula under lipstick or gloss to soothe, soften and protect my lips. But it's even more helpful at night when the antioxidant-rich formula conditions and repairs my lips while I sleep. That's my kind of multitasking!

On the Shelf: $24 for .5 fluid ounces at emerginc.com and leading spas

This antioxidant-rich lip therapy conditions and repairs lips while you sleep.

Neutrogena Revitalizing Lip Balm

WhNeutrogena 149.jpgat it is: A sheer, tinted balm that moisturizes and protects lips with SPF 20.

What I like: This top-rated ointment bathes your pucker in sheer color while delivering instant moisture. Patent-pending ion2 complex leaves lips looking plumper and more defined while SPF 20 helps guard against sun damage.

This lip buddy has found a home in my bag. I like using Neutrogena's Revitalizing Lip Balm on the go because it provides just enough color and shine to make my smile look healthy (no mirror required!). It takes the sting out of painful dryness without feeling heavy. Plus, it can improve your lips texture and natural rosiness in as little as one week. Now, that's something to smile about!

On the Shelf: $8.99 for a .15-ounce tube at Neutrogena.com and in most local retail stores

Neutrogena's Revitalizing Lip Balm comes in pink-licious Sunny Berry and five other pretty shades.

Red Door Spa Professional Signature Luxurious Body Wash and Body Cream

What it is: A skin-softening cleanser and body butter designed to provide a spa-like experience at home.

What I like: Wonderful for beating the winter blues, this gardenia- and tangerine-infused duo is sure to lift your spirits while refre206251 SPA Signature body Wash FINAL 122.jpgshing your skin. The set pampers your body with a blend of active botanicals, antioxidants and vitamins much like those used in the Red Door Spa's most popular services.

I'm crazy about this lavish body wash with its oodles of suds. In addition to gently cleansing, it washes away rough patches by exfoliating dead cells with glycolic acid. It also contains Aloe vera so I can begin moisturizing in the shower and step out with clean, lightly scented and conditioned skin.

Thick, rich and super softening, the Signature Luxurious Body Cream babies my body with a comforting mixture of shea butter and olive oil. It feels utterly dreamy going on, melts in instantly and leaves my skin totally touchable. What a treat!206260 Signature Luxurious Body cream FINAL 285.jpg

On the Shelf: $24 for the 8.4-ounce body wash; $45 for the 8-ounce body cream at Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spas nationwide. Visit Reddoorspas.com for locations.

The Signature Luxurious Body Cream and Body Wash pamper skin with a rich blend of active botanicals, antioxidants and vitamins much like those used in the Red Door Spa's most popular services.

Geluxury Slippers

What it is: An innovative pair of house shoes featuring SmartGel technology to help comfort and repair the distressed skin on your feet.

What I like: These moisture-replenishing slippers soften and smooth dry, rough skin and calluses while repairing damaged cuticles and nail beds. They're infused with seven therapeutic botanical oils and ceramides:

  • Jojoba oil rebuilds nail beds and cuticles
  • Grape seed oil improves skin cell health and tone
  • Soybean oil evens skin tone and smoothes texture
  • Mineral oil prevents moisture loss and softens skin
  • Avocado oil decreases the effects of aging
  • Canola oil soothes dry, irritated skin
  • Olive oil helps stimulate skin cell growth
  • Ceramides seal and protect skin,

Cool and cushy feeling, these feet smoothers are an easy way to get spa-like therapy at home. To reap their benefits, all you have to do is slide into these soft, dermatologist- tested babies 20 to 30 minutes twice a week. There's no lotion to smear on, no mess ... heck, you don't even have to touch your feet!

They can be hand-washed and reused for 100s of treatments. Plus, they come in fun leopard and cow prints in sizes S to XL.

On the Shelf: $39.95 at Geluxury.com

I'm wild about this size small leopard version because, aside from being tres chic, it fits my size 5 1/2 feet like a glove.

Geluxury Slipper 466.jpg


I'm proud to be a brand ambassador for Aveeno and Dryel. I'd like to shout out a big "Thank You" to them and all the brands in this post for providing free samples for review and testing.

 

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Comfort Corner: The Ultimate Chicken Pot Pie

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Ask Bob what he'd like for dinner on a cool night and he's likely to say "Chicken Pot Pie" followed by "please!" because his mama raised him right. He lights up at the thought of that comforting classic loaded with white-meat chicken and healthy veggies in a luscious cream sauce. Ahhh!

 

This Ultimate Chicken Pot Pie is packed with cooked chicken breast and healthy veggies in a made-from-scratch cream sauce.
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