Slow Cooker Chocolate-Banana Bread

Slow Cooker Chocolate-Banana Bread


I saw this recipe on the Today Show, and I just had to save it!  Let me know if you try it!

1 cup whole wheat flour
1 cup all purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg
4 ripe bananas, mashed
2 tablespoons butter, melted
½ cup packed brown sugar
2 large egg whites
¼ cup unsweetened vanilla almond milk (or any preferred milk)
½ cup semi-sweet chocolate chips
½ cup chopped and toasted pecans (optional)


Make sure your bread pan(s) fits in your slow cooker.  

In a medium bowl, whisk together flours, baking powder, cinnamon and nutmeg.  

In a large bowl, thoroughly combine bananas, butter, brown sugar, egg whites and almond milk. Sprinkle dry mixture over banana mixture and fold until ingredients are just combined. Take care not to overmix; batter will be slightly lumpy. Gently fold in chocolate chips and toasted pecans, if using. 

Pour batter into bread pan coated with nonstick oil spray. Place bread pan in slow cooker and set to low for 4 hours. 

To serve, cut bread into 1-inch-thick slices and then cut in half again if using a single large loaf pan.

Note: If using 2 small loaf pans, you may need to prop 1 up using foil paper in order to fit into your slow cooker. Be sure to play with pan placement before pouring batter in. This recipe works for 2 small loaf pans or 1 large pan. 

Alternatively: Bake in a 350˚ oven for 50 to 55 minutes on the middle rack, or until a toothpick inserted into the center of loaf comes out clean. 

If adding pecans to the batter, each slice is 160 calories.

Amount per Serving

  • Calories: 130
  • Protein: 3 g
  • Total Fat: 3 g
    • Unsaturated Fat: 1.5 g
    • Saturated Fat: 1.5 g
  • Cholesterol: 2 mg
  • Total Carbohydrate: 28 g
  • Dietary Fiber: 2 g
  • Total Sugar: 13 g
    • Natural Sugar: 3.5 g
    • Added Sugar: 9.5 g
  • Sodium: 15 mg

CONFIDENTLY love yourself!

*Transformation Tuesday*

It’s amazing what happens when you grow into someone that’s confident instead of insecure. Your whole world changes… Well mine did anyway. ?

I can vividly remember the handful of times I’ve worn “real” shorts in public. Probably because there aren’t very many. ? Every time I was constantly pulling at them willing them to be just a liiiiitle bit longer or looser, and in the end I spent more time worrying about what others would think of how I looked in some outfit than focusing on how much FUN I should have been having with my friends.

I also remember the days of refusing to go out without “some” makeup and styling my hair. WHAT IF someone I knew saw me?! ?

… So, this picture is my story. I had SO much fun at this dinner– IN SHORTS! I loved my outfit, and I LITERALLY rolled out of bed 10 minutes before going. ? My hair “style” is [ Katherine took a shower and then a 3 hour nap with wet hair ] then got dressed for dinner. ?

I’ve lost some weight, yeah– but I’ve grown more as a person during my journey, made a ton of new friends (like Mindy!) and learned to CONFIDENTLY love myself. ?

That’s priceless if you ask me!


Benefits of Garlic and Onions!

In almost everything I cook I add garlic and onion. If the recipe calls for 1 clove of garlic, I add like 4! Turns out there are quite a few health benefits to BOTH garlic and onions, and it’s so easy to incorporate both.


Did you know that in Ancient Greece, the physician Hippocrates, often called the father of Western medicine, used to prescribe garlic to treat a variety of medical conditions? Garlic is high in a sulfur compound called Allicin, which is believed to bring most of the health benefits.

A 1 ounce (28 grams) serving of garlic contains:

Manganese: 23% of the RDA.

Vitamin B6: 17% of the RDA.

Vitamin C: 15% of the RDA.

Selenium: 6% of the RDA.

Fiber: 1 gram.

Decent amounts of Calcium, Copper, Potassium, Phosphorus, Iron and Vitamin B1. Garlic also contains trace amounts of various other nutrients. In fact, it contains a little bit of almost everything we need.

Garlic supplementation is known to boost the function of the immune system. High doses of garlic appear to improve blood pressure of those with known high blood pressure (hypertension). Garlic supplementation seems to reduce total and LDL cholesterol, particularly in those who have high cholesterol. It also contains antioxidants that protect against cell damage and aging, so it may reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and dementia. There is even research being conducted to see if garlic can help with bone health!

.. and to think, I just thought it was yummy!



The use of onions for food goes back at least 3,500 years, and the vegetable is one of the oldest of cultivated plants!

Every time I brown ground beef or turkey, I also add chopped onion! It’s one of my secret ingredients (shhh!) in my chili, pretty much every soup, lasagna and tacos!

Did you know the onion is a super food?! Compared with high-profile foods like pomegranates, red wine, and green tea the onion offers superior benefits for both the prevention and treatment of many common diseases, including various kinds of cancer, coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, cataracts and more. In addition, onions can act as a powerful antibiotic and are helpful in reducing food-borne illnesses caused by microbial contamination.

1 Cup of Cooked Onions contains:
Biotin: 27% of the RDA.
Manganese: 16% of the RDA.
Copper: 16% of the RDA.
Vitamin B6: 16% of the RDA.
Vitamin C: 15% of the RDA.
Fiber: 12% of the RDA.
Phosphorus: 11% of the RDA.
Potassium: 10% of the RDA.
Vitamin B1: 8% of the RDA.
Folate: 8% of the RDA.
If you found this interesting or helpful, feel free to share!


Found this article by Larysa DiDio and loved it! I tell people these things all the time!


You’ve been doing crunches. A lot of them. Running for endless miles on the treadmill. Drinking green shakes. Yet, despite your efforts, your stomach is still looking bigger than ever, and it’s driving you crazy! It may not be your fault. Unknowingly, your daily habits and patterns, along with some food that you eat, can actually make your belly look bigger. Here are 10 reasons why your waist isn’t whittling away, even though the rest of you is.

1. Tight Hip Flexors

Ab exercises like crunches and sit-ups can shorten flexors, which can tilt your hips forward and make you look like you have a belly. Exercising your core with planks and Pilates-based moves is better because these work your abs without the strain on your hip flexors.

2. Chewing Sugar-Free Gum

There’s double trouble here in regards to your belly. When you swallow air while you chew gum, it becomes trapped in your stomach and small intestines and causes bloating. If the gum that you chew is sugarless (which your dentist recommends) your bloating increases because artificial sweeteners aren’t digested by your body.

3. Too Much Stress

When your stress levels are high, your body produces a hormone called cortisol. Studies have shown that this hormone trips your body to take fat from healthier areas, like your butt and hips, and move it to your abdomen. This is called visceral fat and it not only looks bad but is also pretty bad for you because it surrounds your vital organs.

4. Not Enough Sleep

Adults are supposed to sleep seven to nine hours every night. Not getting enough sleep increases the cortisol in your body and your blood sugar levels, giving you a double whammy. The cortisol makes you store fat in your belly, and the crazy sugar levels make you crave carbs and junk food, which wreak havoc on the size of your middle.

5. Too Much Fiber/Sugar

Kale, broccoli, cabbage, and legumes like lentils and peas contain a sugar called raffinose. Your body doesn’t have the ability to digest it properly, so bacteria take the lead and feast on them, which causes gas and bloating. This combined with fiber can make your belly look big and full.

6. Gluten Intolerance

About 15 percent of the population has celiac disease or gluten Intolerance, and 99 percent of people go undiagnosed. Be aware when you eat foods containing gluten (bread, pasta, cereal), and take note of how your body reacts. Bloating, gas, diarrhea, and/or constipation are all signs that you may have a problem digesting the protein in grain.

7. Acid Reflux

In addition to your belly ballooning, do you often feel sick or nauseated after a normal meal? Do you burp a lot or feel burning in your belly or throat within an hour or so of eating? Acid reflux (or indigestion) may be to blame! Certain foods, like tomato sauce, orange juice, and fatty meats, can increase the acid in your belly and cause it to bloat and swell.

8. Constipation

The truth is…when you have more in your belly and intestines, it’s going to look bigger. So if you haven’t gone to the bathroom in days, you’ll feel it. Normal intestinal gas gets trapped behind slow-moving bowels and builds up, causing your belly to distend.

9. Dairy Intolerance

If you feel gassy and uncomfortable after eating ice cream or cheese, you may be lactose intolerant, which means your body doesn’t have the enzymes to break down lactose (the sugar found in dairy products). This can irritate your belly and cause gas to form, making your belly bloated.

10. Too Much Sodium

Eating foods that contain a lot of salt can cause your body to retain water and make your stomach look bigger. The sodium/potassium pumps in your body help regulate water retention. When they’re not in balance and you eat too much salt, it triggers your body to store water. About 90% of Americans eat more sodium than is recommended for a healthy diet.

Dani Johnson’s GEMS Quiz – What Motivates YOU?

Some personality tests are tell us absolutely nothing, or are so predictable as we’re filling them out, they’re totally boring! Sometimes, the results are difficult to understand and we’ve ended up wasting a half hour answering questions that tell us nothing. What I love about THIS quiz is it focuses on YOU. Much like love languages (if you haven’t taken that quiz, you should!), the Gem quiz helps you understand how you interact with others and how you communicate with others!


Below, is Dani Johnson’s GEM Quiz!

There are four basic types of personalities, and everyone needs to speak the language of each personality type to excel in all areas of life. As a first step, you must identify your own personality type, or “GEM,” and get comfortable with your own language.

Once you understand your GEM type, you can learn to spot other GEMS™ quickly.

Walk through these various scenarios and answer the questions honestly. Remember, the only right answer is an honest answer! Not all of these scenarios will apply to you perfectly, because we are all different. So just place a check mark next to the answer that is most appropriate or you feel best describes you. You may notice letters at the end of each option, ignore them while you are reading through, they are to score your test after you have completed it.

 Scenario 1: You have received an item that needs to be assembled:

1.____You read ALL the instructions first and take an inventory of all the parts. “D”

2.____You throw the instructions off to the side and only look at the pictures. “A”

3.____You don’t want to be a burden to anybody else so you assemble it alone, but it may take you longer than others to do so. “C”

4.____You first grumble that it hasn’t already been assembled and you put it together really fast. You think the manufacturer made a mistake because now you have left over parts! You toss the parts; they were not needed. “B”


Scenario 2: When giving a gift:

1.____You find something really nice, in fact so nice you decide to keep it for yourself. You then go buy them something different. “B”

2.____You purchase a fun gift that tells the story of an inside joke, or is just a complete gag gift. “A”

3.____You make the gift yourself or purchase something and add your own personal touch. “C”

4.____You may buy them a card or if you knew what they wanted, it was economical, and fit into your budget, you would make the purchase. “D”


Scenario 3: Hotel chains now place a card inside the hotel room that reads “Please save our water supply. If you would like your towels to be washed please place them on the floor.” Your response is:

1.____You definitely follow the instructions and hang your towels after use. You want to do your part to save the environment. “C”

2.____You read the card and analyze how sincere the hotel actually is. You hang up your towels, because you would never leave them on the floor. “D”

3.____You will just throw the towel on the floor by default. You probably didn’t even realize there was a card in your room and you’re in a hurry anyway, so you’re out the door. “A”

4.____You will say to yourself, “No, I paid a high price for this hotel room and I want the full service, including fresh clean towels.” “B”


Scenario 4: You are out with other people. When ordering from a menu at a restaurant:

1.____You wait to order to see what everyone else orders first to ensure you order something different. That way, you can taste multiple unique things from the menu! “A”

2.____You look at cost to value and ask yourself, “How much do I get for what price? What makes the most sense to buy?” “D”

3.____You usually gravitate to the most expensive item on the menu because you want the best. You typically ask the server, “What is the best thing on your menu?” “B”

4.____If someone else might be picking up the bill, you will choose the least expensive item. You tend to order the healthier option. “C”


Scenario 5: You are at dinner with your friends, the server seems stressed out because

the restaurant is packed. When he/she delivers your food, you realize quickly he/she

brought you the wrong dish:

1.____Say nothing, it was an honest mistake, and you don’t want to further stress the poor server. “C”

2.____As it is being delivered you say something immediately like, “Ah, I didn’t order this,” and in the back of your mind you think the server is obviously incompetent. “B”

3.____Catch the server’s attention and send it back, and say that you would appreciate a discount on your check. “D”

4.____Eat the meal, who knows, it might be better than what you ordered. You may make a comment to the server with no expectations and say something like, “It’s no problem, I’ll eat it anyway.” “A”


 Scenario 6: When it comes to rules:

1.____You think that everyone else’s rules are stupid. When it comes to the rules you invented, you believe everyone should follow them.  “Its my way or the highway” “B”

2.____You will naturally follow the rules because you don’t want to hurt anybody’s feelings or displease anyone. “C”

3.____You believe that rules are meant to be broken. “A”

4.____You believe that rules were meant to be followed. “D”


 Scenario 7: Pick an occupation that most appeals to you:

1.____You prefer to work directly with people, build relationships, and travel. “A”

2.____You prefer to work with methods, systems, numbers, processes, and routines. “D”

3.____You like what is challenging and makes the most money. “B”

4.____You enjoy helping and serving people and working toward a great cause. “C”


 Scenario 8: When it comes to sports:

1.____If you can’t win then you won’t play, because winning is everything! “B”

2.____You love to play team sports! If you don’t win it’s OK because you enjoyed

playing the game with each other. “A”

3.____You don’t exactly see the point in sports, you have a long task list and some research you would rather be doing. “D”

4.____If you make me play, I’ll play, but please don’t hurt me and don’t scream at me and I really don’t care if we win. “C”


Scenario 9: When it comes to clothing:

1.____You wear clothes that are comfortable, breathable, non-binding. You also own a lot of old things that have been passed down from generation to generation because you are the family heirloom recipient. And you generally like earth tones. “C”

2.____You are the person who wears something bright, trendy, fun, colorful, what’s hip, what’s hot now. You like funny clothes even with jokes on them. It doesn’t matter if anybody likes it; you like it. “A”

3.____You wear the BEST, the most popular labels, the hottest-looking clothes. You put on the most expensive clothing and you dress to impress. You also wear a lot of black! “B”

4.____You may have items in your closet that are more than 10 years old, still in good working order. And there is no point in replacing them, fashion repeats itself just like history. “D”


Scenario 10: When it comes to shoes:

1.____You purchase quality shoes at a discounted price. Among your shoes, you’ve had many of them for a long time because you wear them until they wear out. “D”

2.____You have a lot of comfortable slip-on shoes, something that is easy to get into and out of and great to wear all day. You probably love Birkenstocks and during the winter you may even wear them with socks. “C”

3.____You have tons of shoes and none of them are boring. They are colorful, be dazzled, extreme, or something that always makes them a topic of conversation. Comfort is not the goal. “A”

4.____You have a selection of top-of-the-line, brand-name shoes. (Several pairs in black) “B”


Scenario 11: When it comes to accessories:

1.____You always have tons of accessories, mixing and matching different bracelets, rings, watches, and earrings (usually inexpensive, or fake). You may even have lots of visible tattoos and piercings. “A”

2.____Your accessories are simple and you only wear maybe a watch and/or wedding band. It is tasteful. “D”

3.____You are attracted to the best jewelry, the highest quality stones and metals.  Basically you want your jewelry to say I have more money than you (even if I don’t). “B”

4.____You typically don’t wear a lot of jewelry, if you do it is handmade, or heirlooms that have been passed down and hold sentimental value. “C”


Scenario 12: Through your formal educational years:

1.____You never got in trouble. You probably scored high in either math or science. You were neat and organized, everything was in its proper place. Your locker was also neat, organized, and even color coded! “D”

2.____You heard ‘sit down and shut up’ often. You often got in trouble for being loud and tardy. “A”

3.____You were the best at everything – well everything you chose to be the best at, because it’s silly to be the best at something that is not important. “B”

4.____You were a compliant and quiet student who listened to most everything your teachers had to say. You worked diligently so that you wouldn’t disappoint your teachers and/or parents. “C”


Scenario 13: When it comes to your car:

1.____You like a fun car that has really cool colors and the sound system is more expensive than the car itself. And you have a lot of stuff in my trunk that you have no idea what’s in there. You have candy wrappers and fast food wrappers underneath all the seats. If there is license and registration it is crumbled up in a ball somewhere. “A”

2.____You like the best cars! Clean, sparkling, and capable of getting a lot of attention. It has to be a popular high-end brand name and it has to be expensive. It is the best of its class. “B”

3.____You like a car with research behind it; it must be cost effective, get good gas mileage, and have longevity. A car must be clean and organized inside and out. The scheduled maintenance and tune-ups ensure the longevity of the vehicle. Everything must be in good working order. “D”

4.____A car should be safe and good for the environment. Your cars in the past have had bumper stickers on the back and pictures of the kids inside. You always have tissues and wipes just in case. You know all the safety features. “C”


Scenario 14: When driving:

1.____You drive slow, and will let everyone into your lane. You stop for pedestrians and will brake for animals in the road. “C”

2.____You drive fast, honk the horn at cars and pedestrians. You tailgate, and you don’t heed the bike lane. “B”

3.____You drive fast, talk/text, run yellow lights. Music is very loud. You didn’t even know there were pedestrians waiting to cross. “A”

4.____You tend to obey the traffic signs and law. On the highway you may set your cruise control to the exact speed limit. It is illogical and insensible to pay for a traffic citation. “D”


Scenario 15: When packing to go out of town:

1.____All of your clothes are thrown in unfolded with shoes on top of the clothes or in with the clothes. Your shampoos and toiletries are also thrown in with everything. “A”

2.____You have one complete outfit for each day picked out in advance. All of your toiletries are in separate compartments. Everything is perfectly folded. “D”

3.____You bring more clothes than what you need, and you pack at the last minute because you are so busy. However, you do keep your toiletries separate and shoes separate. Your bag is not so organized but you know what will look good and better than everybody else when you arrive. “B”

4.____You bring very few cosmetics. You don’t have a bag that’s too heavy because “somebody else may have to lift this.” You always have a first-aid kit just in case somebody else needs a bandage. You also pack snacks! “C”


Scenario 16: When it comes to dating:

1.____You are on time. You dressed appropriately for whatever the activity may be. “D”

2.____You most likely go to a concert or out dancing, something that is active and fun! And you WILL be late because you changed your clothes 10 times because you didn’t know what you wanted to wear. “A”

3.____You would go to an expensive restaurant. “B”

4.____You enjoy a nice quiet restaurant that is not too expensive and has an organic flare to it. “C”


Scenario 17: When you are surrounded by children:

1.____You are multi-tasking, holding a conversation as well as texting and emailing others at the same time. “B”

2____Find most kids to be noisy and rambunctious and difficult to control. “D”

3.____Will get out and play with the kids for hours! “A”

4.____Suggest a nice quiet activity (like reading) and just enjoy spending time with them. “C”


Scenario 18: When it comes to money:

1.____Impulse buyer, you don’t know where half of your money ends up. “A”

2.____Splurges on expensive items, you tend to purchase items that are the best. “B”

3.____Not a huge spender, but you lend or give friends and family money and you may go with out because of it. “C”

4.____You know where every dime of your money ends up. You never impulse buy; every purchase is thought out thoroughly. “D”


Scenario 19: When setting goals:

1.____Set dozens of lofty goals, you are a goal-setter and a go-getter. You tend to overfill your plate and will avoid failure at all cost. “B”

2.____Assess first and establish practical goals. “D”

3.____Volunteer to help other people fulfill their goals, you naturally find a need and fill it! “C”

4.____Don’t set big goals, unless it is to have a good time. You love to start things, but rarely finish them. “A”


Scenario 20: When it comes to solving problems:

1.____You are a verbal processor, you have to talk out your problems with someone. “A”

2.____You come up with several scenarios, map each solution out and decide what the most efficient course of action would be. “D”

3.____Fix it fast; you don’t have time to deal with problems. But you know your solution is the best possible answer. “B”

4.____Become overwhelmed, seek out others for help. You don’t want to disappoint anybody. “C”


Scenario 21: An argument breaks out, you are the one who:

1.____Probably started it (but you would never admit that).“B”

2.____Will quiet down and stay out of it. “C”

3.____Try to make light of it and attempt to change the subject. “A”

4.____Have a valid argument and lay it out, even if it’s harsh. “D”


Scenario 22: If it’s a big decision:

1.____Make quick decisions and often change them just as quickly. “A”

2.____Never like making a decision, and quickly become stressed out. Especially if the decision could hurt people’s feelings. “C”

3.____Consider all of the options and make the most logical choice. “D”

4.____Make quick decisions. You aren’t afraid to make a tough decision and you disregard any obstacles in the way. “B”


Scenario 23: If there was a threat of a natural disaster in your area:

1.____You are too busy to even think about the disaster. Why waste time concerning yourself with something that may never happen? If it actually did come to your area, you would quickly run out and grab supplies at the last minute. “B”

2.____You already have your emergency kit ready, and have had it ready to go for years with enough food and fresh water to last your family several months. “D”

3.____You have an emergency kit with a lot of excess food in case other people didn’t prepare; you also have extra flashlights and lots of bandages for everybody else. “C”

4.____When you hear about the possibility, you run to the store and stock up on overly processed foods such as chips, donuts, beer, soda, and crackers. And make sure to grab a deck of cards. “A”


Scenario 24: Spring cleaning! You open your garage door:

1.____There are boxes full of old knickknacks that have been there for years. You can’t bring yourself to throw them out. You know that others are in need so you find some older clothes and furniture to donate. “C”

2.____Everything is already organized, pushed to one side, and stacked perfectly.  However, you take the time to implement a new color-coded labeling system on all the boxes. Red is for Christmas decorations, etc. “D”

3.____Everything is everywhere, you can barely open the garage door; it is a disaster. Why clean it? You still always find what you need. “A”

4.____Your garage is packed full of “stuff” and you are too busy to clean and organize it. You do a quick clean and shove boxes to one side so you can fit your new car in the garage. You may have thrown away some important family items, but who hangs on to stuff anyway? “B”


Scenario 25: You open your closet doors:

1.____There is a place for everything. Your closet is organized with the hangers in the same direction and your clothes hang neatly from light to dark. “D”

2.____A majority of the hangers are empty, most of your clothes are on the floor in your room. You are lucky if you find two socks that match. “A”

3.____Not overly organized or sloppy, you are just too busy to organize it. But your clothes are hanging. “B”

4.____Your closet is packed with hand me downs, a lot of neutral tones, and comfortable organic materials because you can’t throw anything out! “C”


Scenario 26: You are loading the dishwasher:

1.____Load it full with food still encrusted on all the dishes, you don’t get to unloading it until the sink is full again of dirty dishes. You often ruin hand-wash only dishes and melt plastic ware by placing them in the high heat rack. “A”

2.____Load it with crusty dishes, you don’t want to wait for it to be full to run it so you start the dishwasher when it is half-full most of the time. “B”

3.____Load the dishwasher with pre-rinsed and scraped dishes, in an orderly manner with all of the silverware matched up in separate, designated areas. “D”

4____Because conserving water and energy is important to you, you don’t run the dishwasher until it is totally full so you don’t have to run it that often. “C”


Scenario 27: Shopping at the grocery store:

1.____Grab and go, the idea is to get out of the store as quickly as possible. “B”

2.____Spend entirely too long in the grocery store, buy more than you intended and totally forget to buy the key items you originally went in for. “A”

3.____Go straight for the organic section. “C”

4.____Have a list, don’t buy anything that is not on the list, and shop the sales and look for discounts. “D”


 Scenario 28: Friendships:

1.____Have lots of friends; people love being around you! And you are constantly making new friends! You value relationships and keep in touch with people you have known for a very long time. “A”

2.____You have a huge heart for your friends, and also maintain many long-term relationships. You are everyone’s best friend, but often your kindness gets taken advantage of. “C”

3.____You attempt to change people, because they tend to let you down. You have a few close friends but it is hard to earn your trust. “D”

4.____Everybody knows who you are, you make sure of that. Your closest friends are probably driven and ambitious like yourself (but not more than you). “B”


Scenario 29: When you are in a room full of people:

1.____You will talk to every single person in the room, and comfortably. “A”

2.____You size up everyone in the room, and immediately identify any competition. “B”

3.____You find one person and connect really well, spending the whole night in a thoughtful conversation with them. “C”

4.____You gravitate away from the main mass of people, sit back, and observe. “D”


Scenario 30: When talking on the phone:

1.____You are aware of how much time you are dedicating to the call, being sure to ask all questions up front and end the conversation after all important information has been relayed. No reason to linger. “D”

2.____Even if it is the cable guy, you talk for at least twenty minutes discussing your favorite TV shows and what you had for lunch. “A”

3.____You don’t talk a lot, you mostly listen to the other person. You never end the conversation, you are available to them for as long as they need and answer all questions fully. “C”

4.____You have a purpose for the conversation, and will stay on the phone long enough to make sure that purpose was accomplished. You will keep talking until the other person fully understands. The conversation ends with an action item. “B”


Scenario 31: Public Speaking:

1.____You have everything written down, and explain or present the information in a step-by-step fashion, and tend to use a larger vocabulary. “D”

2.____You avoid public speaking as much as possible. When forced you keep it short (if not slightly rushed sounding) and tend to be more soft-spoken. “C”

3.____You probably should have made note cards but forgot. You are a very animated speaker, using your hands and swaying or walking around while you talk. It may not be the most organized and maybe you unintentionally leave out a few things but in general, you are always enthusiastic about the topic. “A”

4.____You are a very confident public speaker, and aren’t afraid to be the first to present an idea. “B”


Scenario 32: In conversation with someone one-on-one:

1.____You don’t talk loud and are more reserved. You tend to be the first to listen and the last to speak. “C”

2.____You are pretty loud or animated (or both) when you get to talking to someone. “A”

3.____You tend to talk in a rhythm, more monotone. You are not overly loud or soft-spoken. You like to ask questions in order to clarify. “D”

4.____You tend to dominate the conversation. You are a direct communicator, and you emphasize what you think is BEST a lot. You’re opinionated and don’t like it if people disagree. “B”


Scenario 33: When visiting the zoo:

1.____You make a beeline for the birds of prey and wildcat exhibits. In general, see what you want and then leave. “B”

2.____You stop by every exhibit and feel a sadness for all the caged animals. And typically donate at every opportunity. “C”

3.____You, as always, have the day planned out, and stop by each exhibit and catch every animal show in order of the map. You also pack snacks and water and don’t buy anything from inside the park; it is all overpriced. “D”

4.____You don’t even look at the map, you bounce around the park to each exhibit sign as you see them. You make sure to buy the elephant swirly straw and some cotton candy. “A”

 Scenario 34: Handshake:

1.____You tend to offer a loose relaxed handshake and often use both hands to shake. “C”

2.____You offer a firm quick handshake. “D”

3.____You love an enthusiastic shake and tend to not let go, or you bypass the hand and offer a hug. “A”

4.____You have a strong solid grip when you shake hands; you control when it ends. “B”

Scenario 35: Keeping track of time:

1.____Every clock in your house is set to the same time, down to the second. You are always on time. You are never late. “D”

2.____You are so busy it is hard to keep track of time. You usually sacrifice eating and sleeping times to get things done. “B”

3.____You try to be everywhere early; you don’t want to inconvenience anyone. However, it doesn’t always work out. “C”

4.____If you do care about being on time, you set your watch 10-30 minutes ahead to help give you extra time, and still often find yourself late. You lose track of it quickly. “A”


Scenario 36: When home alone:

1.____Pull out your home task list and begin completing things that need to get done, one by one. “D”

2.____Pull out your laptop and continue working. “B”

3.____Put on the TV, music, and call someone, all at the same time. “A”

4.____Put on some relaxing music and sit down to rest for a bit, and maybe enjoy a cup of tea outside. “C”


Scenario 37: How you view people:

1.____You find most people incompetent. “D”

2.____You see the good in people. “A”

3____You try to show them up, whoever it is. “B”

4.____You do see the good in people, and will give them multiple chances – even if they have hurt you. “C”


 Scenario 38: When at the doctor’s office:

1.____You got there on time and you are frustrated if you are made to wait longer than a few minutes past your appointment time. “D”

2.____You got there early and will wait patiently to see the doctor if he is running late. You understand some emergency may have come up that requires the doctor’s time. “C”

3.____You showed up late and just hope they didn’t cancel your appointment. You get out your phone and start texting or make a call. You may even play a game on your phone. “A”

4.____Chances are you were a couple minutes late, but act as if you were on time. If made to wait more than a reasonable amount of time, you confront the receptionist. If the doctor can’t make time for you, you are not going to sit around all day – she/he should just let you in or reschedule the appointment for a day when the doctor is less busy. “B”

Scenario 39: Hair:

1.____Your hair is always trendy, professional, and you paid a lot of money to maintain it (even if you are a guy). “B”

2.____You love experimenting with funky colors, dreadlocks, a perm! Anything! “A”

3.____You don’t want to damage your hair with harmful chemicals or processing.  Whatever is easy. You don’t pay attention much to styling. “C”

4.____You tend to pick a hairstyle that does not require a lot of time to maintain it. You may have been going to the same barber/hair stylist for 20 years, and you rarely change your hair style. “D”


Scenario 40: Of these four choices, which option motivates you the most:

1.____Serving others. “C”

2.____Challenge and/or Money. “B”

3.____Fun! “A”

4.____Facts and figures. “D”


Congratulations on completing the assessment!


Great job. So…now what?

Simply go back through the assessment and add up the number of items that

corresponds to the letters A, B, C and D and enter those totals on the lines be

low. As you’ve probably figured out, each letter corresponds to a specific GEM:


Screen Shot 2014-02-02 at 10.34.28 AMA = Sapphire

B = Ruby

C = Pearl

D = Emerald

But hold on; you don’t get just one score; you get two. Everyone has a primary and a secondary GEM! So, if the highest total number of answers corresponds to the letter D, and the second highest number of answers corresponds to the letter B, you are an Emerald (Primary) and Ruby (Secondary).


Keep in mind that there are NO RIGHT ANSWERS or ‘GOOD’ GEMS™. Each GEM is excellent in its own right, with strengths and advantages that need to be recognized and honored to maximize communication!







Now that you have completed the exercise, please let me introduce you to the four basic personality types, or GEMS™. Once you identify your own personality type, or “GEM,” and get comfortable with your own language, you will also spot other GEMS™ quickly. Being able to identify yourself and others will allow you to communicate more effectively and speak to others in their language. You will notice that both your personal and working relationships will become less stressful, more productive, and more fulfilling in every way.

SAPPHIRES are motivated by fun!

PEARLS are motivated by a cause.

EMERALDS are motivated by facts and figures.

RUBIES are motivated by a challenge and/or money.

People have many different responses to the GEMS™ Personality Test. Some may have found the process of taking this test to be a bit uncomfortable, while others find that the results fit them accurately. Whatever your response, your feelings are valid and consistent with the GEMS™ Mastery.

Emerald, you may have found this process imperfect as you analyzed each question and answer. Your greatest struggle was that the answer you had to choose did not describe you with the greatest accuracy. Emerald, remember the directions did say, “Pick the one that most accurately describes you,” not what perfectly describes you.

Ruby, you have places to go, people to see, and a list that needed to be finished yesterday. Most Rubies have a tendency to skip or skim the instructions, which specifies that for the best results you should read ALL of the answers. You, on the other hand, read the answers until you had a “that’s me” moment, made your selection, and went on to the next question.

Sapphire, after answering a few questions, your curiosity got the best of you and you began to count the pages to see how long the test was. You may have even experienced some slight perspiration as you saw the length of the test and found it intimidating or hard to focus. Due to your creative nature, there’s a good chance that you skipped around, instead of answering the question in the order presented.

Pearl, you looked at the test and considered all four answers before making your choice (as you were instructed when you read through the introduction thoroughly). Though you may have been somewhat uneasy answering some very direct questions, you considered what fit you most and continued on.

Each GEM is unique and special. As you continue on through the video, audio and study guide, you will further understand how each GEM is vital to your work, your life and your success.

I’m a RUBY… what are you?

GEMS™ Personality Test

My Beachbody Business Story

[[ BIG NEWS ]]
I did something I am {{ SHOCKED }} I was able to do!

I LEFT my full time “big girl” job to be a FULL TIME BEACHBODY COACH!

I learned a LOT in college and working after I graduated, but my biggest lesson was — I want MORE. More FREEDOM. More happiness. More time with people (and pets) I love. ?

I never DISliked my work before, but alarm clocks ⏰, long commutes ? and little room for advancement without job hopping was disheartening.

I’ve been treated as the kid that’s too young to be good at her job. (Even with 3 college degrees) ?? I’ve been hired because I was a “cute girl,” and I’ve been told that if I couldn’t handle sexual harassment, I was in the wrong place. ?

At one point, the stress of my J-O-B and micromanager were literally making me break out in hives and affecting my health.
I’ve always dreamed of HELPING people. But that’s so hard to do from a cubicle. ?

I’m a dreamer. I believe others should DREAM too. ? I started coaching because I wanted a discount on a shake. ? Coaching then helped me pay off my student loan, buy an international plane ticket and afford to give my family Christmas gifts.

NOW, I get to turn off my alarms, work in my pjs and CONNECT with friends far and wide. ? I now surround myself with people that support and love me. I work with people that truly want me to SUCCEED. and I get to HELP people.

There are truly no words for how that feels!


If you’re curious about what I’m doing and if it could change YOUR life, APPLY HERE!

**Beachbody does not guarantee any level of success or income from the Team Beachbody Coach Opportunity.

Katherine Cushen

Engagement 05-23_No35_0016I believe we were all made for more! My name is Katherine, and I’m married to my best friend Jake. We live in Northeast Alabama with our 3 dogs and cat! My sense of humor is predictable, and Jerry Seinfeld and I have the same favorite joke — “Two peanuts were walking down the street, one was a salted!” hehe

I used to tell people I make friends in elevators, I love to travel and have been to nearly 20 countries! Meeting people that share my love of food, health and happiness makes my heart happy! I love hiking, am fascinated by Space Exploration, have a wide range of favorite tv shows (like Grey’s Anatomy and Supernatural), and love to read! My love of music is just as varied I’m a Jim Croce meets Top Hits kind of girl.

Education has always been important to me. I have a B.A. in Organizational Communications, a B.S. in Marketing from South Alabama (Go JAGS!), and an Executive MBA from the University of Alabama- ROLL TIDE!

In January 2016, I retired from my full time job as a Strategic Communications Specialist with the US Army to live a life of freedom as a full time Beachbody Coach! In my heart, I was always looking for more than just a J.O.B., and I got so lucky to stumble upon a career that allows me to help people reach their goals and dreams! Now, I spend my time connecting people with workout programs that will work for them and mentoring others to build their coaching businesses.

I believe if you put positivity into the world, you can make the world a better place.




Beef Short Ribs



Beef Short Ribs

2 tablespoons canola oil
6 flanken-style short ribs with bones, cut 2 inches thick (about 4 pounds)
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 large onion, finely chopped
2 carrots, sliced
3 celery ribs, sliced
3 garlic cloves, thickly sliced
One 750-milliliter bottle dry red non-alcoholic wine
4 thyme sprigs
3 cups chicken stock

1. Season the ribs with salt and pepper. Heat Oil in a large dutch oven. Add them to the skillet and brown on all sides. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
2. Add the onion, carrots, celery and garlic to the skillet and cook over low heat until softened. Add the wine and thyme sprigs and turn up the heat to high and boil for 1 minute. Pour over the ribs and let cool.
3. Preheat the oven to 350°F. place ribs back into dutch oven. Add the chicken stock and bring to a boil. Cover and cook for 1 1/2 hours, until the meat is tender but not falling apart. Uncover and braise for 30 minutes longer. Turn the ribs over half way through.
4. Remove ribs from dutch oven, cover and keep warm. Strain the sauce and place in a saucepan and keep warm over a low heat. Transfer the meat to plates, spoon the sauce on top and serve with Chef Stuarts perfect mash.

Creamy Mashed Potatoes with Creme Fraiche

4 quarts water
3 tablespoons kosher salt
3 lbs yukon gold potatoes, cubed (I choose yukon because they cook fast, and you can leave the skin on as it is so thin and also has the benefit of keeping in the vitamins since most of them are in the skin)
3/4 cup whole milk
1/2 cup creme fraiche
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoons chopped chives

1. Bring water to a boil with the potatoes already in the saucepan.
2. Cook potatoes for about 20 minutes.
3. Drain and place potatoes into a ricer and push them through.
4. In a saucepan, heat milk, creme fraiche and butter until bubbles start to form.
5. Mix the hot mixture with the potatoes and blend well by hand
until potatoes are super creamy, add in chives and mix for about 1 minute.
season with salt and pepper and of course TASTE!!!
6. Place in a heatproof dish and cover with foil until ready for use. Reheat in oven at 200oF if necessary for 10 minutes.

Brown Sugared Carrots

3 tablespoons Canola oil
1 pound of baby carrots, peeled and washed
Salt and pepper
3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
2 tablespoons honey
¾ cup water
3 tablespoons butter

1. In a large skillet, heat oil until it gets hot and place carrots in skillet and season with salt and pepper. Stir to cover with seasonings.
2. Cook carrots for 5 minutes and add the brown sugar and honey and cook for a further 5 – 7 minutes. Add water in needed.
3. Add the butter and stir for another minute or two.
4. Serve in a large bowl.

These recipes are from Stuart O’Keefe. 🙂

Love Yourself!

Can I be my own ‪crush on #‎womancrushwednesday‬ ? Well.. I’m gonna! 😉

I can’t even begin to tell you what it feels like to be CONFIDENT again. No, I’m not perfect. NO, my weight does not define me. {{ IN FACT– I weigh about the same in both of these pictures. SHOCKER right? }}

The difference? I found a group of people that supported and loved me when I barely supported and loved myself. I found products that worked for me, but most of all I found accountability within my team. I CHOSE to be STRONG rather than eating ALL the cupcakes.


I lost inches and insecurities.
I gained confidence and freedom.

I saw a random Facebook invitation to join an accountability group (like the ones I host every month), and just said “sure, why NOT me?!” I thank God every day for that post. It changed my life, my health and gave me an outlet for my passion for helping others!

If you’ve been wanting MORE, if you’re READY for MORE… please message me or like this post. I have an accountability group about to start, and it might just change your life like one changed mine. This is YOUR invitation.

Love yourself.

Apply HERE!