Healthy Tips For A New School Year

WELCOME BACK TO THE NEW SCHOOL YEAR!

It’s hard to believe that the new school year is right around the corner.  We all know how busy and hectic it can be adjusting to a brand new schedule, but your health and nutrition need not to be compromised. Whether you are a student, parent, or just looking to maintain your overall health, consider the following tips:

  1. Form (new) healthy habits. Quite literally, according to research and summed up by Psychology Today, “the behavioral patterns we repeat most often are literally etched into our neural pathways.” It’s true: habits are often easy to pick up and hard to break. The good news is that we CAN make changes. It is believed that it takes 30 days to form a new habit. Do you struggle with drinking soda? Eating fast foods? Exercising? Start replacing soda with a sugar-free or reduced calorie beverage more often. Start packing a lunch from home instead of eating fast foods everyday. Start an exercise routine and promise yourself you’ll follow through. The more times you do this, the easier it will get and thus a new habit will be formed.

  2. Stop overcomplicating meals. Everyone thinks that in order to eat healthy, you need to spend a lot of time cooking fancy meals. In this fast-paced world, what can we do when we’re in a pinch? Instead of grabbing a burger and fries, consider a healthier alternative. For example, stop by your local supermarket and buy a rotisserie chicken. You can cut pieces of the chicken breast and pair with a bagged salad or a frozen vegetable for a meal that is ready in minutes and takes zero skill to prepare! If you are a parent on the go, consider using a pre-mixed refrigerated protein drink or a protein powder (1 serving) mixed with water, unsweetened almond milk, or a sugar-free beverage as a meal replacement. Pair with a serving of fruit. Your body will thank you.

  3. Do plan ahead. Okay, so not every meal should be a last minute thought. Pick 1-2 nights a week to prep ahead. Purchase meats or other lean proteins, fresh or frozen vegetables, and starches that are on sale for the week and cook in bulk so you can have leftovers. Prepare with different herbs/seasonings or light sauces so you don’t get bored. Being prepared allows you to remain in control.

  4. Get rid of the junk. No seriously, it will be so helpful to you and your family.  Do you buy soda, juices, and sweets? There is no reason you should be allowing that temptation to overpower you. If you had to choose between a piece of fresh fruit and a piece of candy, what do you think will win? I guarantee you’ll choose the candy every time if it’s always in front of you. There is absolutely nothing wrong with balance. You should treat yourself occasionally, but go out to have a treat and don’t bring it home. Allow your house to be filled with healthy foods and snacks so you and your family can stay on track together. Remember that certain foods marketed as “healthy” can add significant calories and sugar, such as juice (even if it says organic) or granola (1/2 cup alone can have 200+ calories). Check out www.choosemyplate.gov for resources on how much you should be eating of certain food groups, how to read a food label and more!

  5. Stick with an exercise routine. Don’t make excuses, just make time- at least 30 minutes per day. Whether it’s early in the morning, during lunch, or after school/work, get moving! Walk with family or friends, play a sport, or try a workout video (Youtube is a great FREE resource). If you experience significant joint pain, try something low impact such as water walking/aerobics. If you’re concerned, always reach out to your doctor for a list of approved exercises. There is something for everyone!

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Arica Fratarcangeli, MS, RDN, LD is a dietitian who specializes in weight management. She currently resides in Washington, DC and works for Kaiser Permanente.

Annie + Alex | Binghamton Family Portrait Session

HAAAYYYY YALL IT'S ME AGAIN!

I know its been a hot minute since I've sat down and uploaded a blog post but ya know what- life gets busy. That's all I have to say about that. 

Gracing the blog today will be some familiar faces. I had the absolute pleasure of working with Annie + Alex again! This time they have a new addition to their family, Miss Adalynn who has officially turned a year old. Oh, and Luna tagged along too!

In case anyone is new here- I met Annie + Alex back in like... 2009? I have had the honor of watching their love grow so much (and fam) over the years. I shot their engagements, wedding, maternity, family portraits and now Adalynns first birthday. Just wanted to give a quick shout out for the reminder of how old we are actually getting but also for being such great clients and supporting me! 

This little fam is so laid back and easy going. They put their trust in me which I am so incredibly thankful for and LOVE. We have such a great time during their sessions.
Here's a few favorites- enjoy!

 

 

My Kid Sister | Gender Reveal | Binghamton Personal Blog

 

Okay-- so to be technical she's not really a kid. We're actually 11 months apart. That's right.. you did the math correctly with that one. I was approximately 1 month old when she was conceived. Now if you're into astrology, we're both Gemini's as well so there's that.. 

Having sibling so close in age, or in general is the best [and worst] thing. I've always had someone to go on adventures with but then there's the part where we were always around each other. That would get real annoying very quickly. But let another turd pick on her and I would be right by her side to defend her... and possibly punch a few kids who just didn't know how to play nice (I'm still not sorry about that). We were poor. We didn't have cable. We would stay out until the street lights came on and lived off of Ramen, Goulash and  Mac + cheese. We used to get lost in the woods behind our house, ride our bikes in the road and roller blade until we had blisters. 

Don't let those nostalgic memories fool you though. I was a special kind of asshole as a young child. I apparently covered her in an entire tub of Vaseline. Like CAKED it on her. I was like 1.5 years old so that's acceptable right? I would instigate fights over barbies and baby dolls. She could walk in the room and look at me and I'd start an arguement. I'd always steal the top bunk of our bunk beds. I tried to cut down the family tree once and pretended like it was her idea (sorry Gram).  I made messes and sometimes broke things. I just really enjoyed doing stupid stuff. I was sassy and did what I wanted. My Grandmother had a wooden spoon called the peacemaker and I was it's number one customer. 

The best part though? I GOT TO BLAME IT ALL ON HER! Except this one time my mom took the trash out and she locked her out. I, the kind, loving child that I was unlocked the door to let her in and then immediately got my ass spanked for it because she thought it was me. mmm Karma? Don't worry, between sobs I yelled "it was LIZ!" and she got her tush spanked too. To be fair, I was accustomed to ass beatings as a child so it really was just another afternoon of being Kaitlyn. She was also as equally evil but I'll be nice and not share that with the general public. Just all of my friends and the whole bar on a Friday night. HOLLLER.

Now that I have made it public I was a huge brat as a child... As we got older, we definitely became closer, especially when our mom passed. Our personalities and interests are not even close to being the same. I'll forever be the wild child and she's always going to be the quiet one in the back people watching weirdos like me. But ya know what? I wouldn't be able to imagine my life without her in it. 

She's spent the last 8 years being a great mom to two absolutely incredible boys [who happen to have my sass- you're welcome. You can't escape me.] She's not like a regular mom, she's a cool mom, for real. I don't plan to have children any time soon (or ever, honestly) as I have this imperative need to travel the world first but if I do-- I really hope I nail the parenting thing as well as she is. She's been patient with my shenanigans our whole life and now she's teaching her boys how to be patient and kind to others.  Hopefully they've been taking notes because come July they're going to have another sibling to pass it along to! Helping her raise these boys the last 8 years has been such an incredible experience. They're loud and destructive, always sticky and farting and talking about boy stuff and doing things little boys do. I love them to do death and I would do anything for them but COME ONNNNN! Alas, my prayers have been answered..

IT'S A GIRL!

 

Being an aunt has seriously filled my heart with SO MUCH love. Both of these boys and my sister have taught me so much in life and how to be a better person. I can't wait to add to this group of weirdos. Get ready y'all, shit's about to get wildddd! 

 

 

 

Luke + Niki | Binghamton Fall Wedding

I have to admit, I still freak out a little bit before every single wedding. I've been a photographer for a while now so you would think this wouldn't be the case. Yet there I am every morning before a wedding, packing up my car and having a meltdown in my brain. 

This was 100% the case on Luke + Niki's big day. They had the largest wedding party and it was pretty intimidating especially when it came time to plan poses for their portraits. Ohhhh but let me tell you I freaked myself out for no reason. In general, Luke, Niki and their families are the sweetest little peaches and when it came down to getting things done, their wedding party was ON IT. 

I love weddings. Really. It's not a secret. Everyone is so welcoming, happy and always willing to lend a hand if I need. In this case it was the Maid of Honor + Bridesmate-- thanks again, y'all daaa best! Every wedding is different. The people, the traditions, the music. EVERYTHINGGG all the way down to the tiny details. For example, Niki's mom handmade their bouquets and they were totally gorgeous. Like, yaaass girl.

I had a great time spending the day with this incredible couple and their family. 2016- another season in the books and another year of making new friends to come. 

Congratulations Luke + Niki