Anxiety SUCKS – Techniques to battle anxiety

You will maybe think I am weird, but for me, any kind of change in life is a big deal. Any time I have big life changes I get anxiety really bad. 😦

I love to think I have my life organized but the last few months were very chaotic. I started to have panic attacks. The weird thing is after each panic attack is over I realize that I was being irrational and a little crazy, but when I’m in the middle of an attack my feelings are very real and I feel like something terrible is going to happen to be in every situation. It’s like my brain is racing or in turbo thinking and analyzing way too much. I swear I think of 10 different outcomes to every situation and they are all bad.

Recently, I had been feeling like I was not in control of my life and that a lot of terrible things were going to happen because of all the changes in my life (and truthfully they were all good changes, but my brain kept thinking of ways every situation could turn for the worst). I think this trait could be valuable for survival if I was a caveman, but it usually just stresses me out.

I love my routine, it makes me feel secure and comfortable.

Looking back over the past 6 months, I think Heavenly Father wanted me to change my routine, but I was not quite ready yet.

When I was feeling anxious, I read a lot of blog articles to see if I could find something that would help me. I was not able to sleep well, I had a little bit of depression, I was frequently in a bad mood, and all of that just because of good news!

🤦🏼‍♀️🤷‍♀️

I know, crazy right?! At the same time, I was ashamed to not be able to control my fear. So I was trying to hide all the negative feelings I was having. I don’t think this was a good idea because my anxiety just got worse and worse. It got so bad, I started to feel actual pain in my body—headaches, stomach pain, heartbeat problems, and rashes…

So, two months ago, I decided to try and deal with my anxiety. Even though I had decided I was done, I couldn’t just turn it off. Each day was a battle and I knew I needed to come up with a plan of attack. I decided to read as much as I could and I found little tips that I thought might help me.

After some trial and error, I settled on a few simple steps that worked for me. A few months later these steps have saved my sanity in my daily life.

Here are my steps to battling anxiety:

1. Find someone who you trust and talk about everything that gives you anxiety. Try and find someone who doesn’t have a lot of anxiety and who is a rational thinker. (It’s best if you explain that you are having anxiety and you just need someone to talk things through with, not necessarily someone to fix your anxiety.)

I decided to talk to my best friend, my husband, about the things that were giving me such anxiety and physical problems.

2. Talk through why these things make you having anxiety.

3. Analyze if you have control over these things or not. If you have control over it, discuss with your friend things you can do and make a plan to be able to fix what is making you have anxiety.

If you have no control over it, you are screwed!  😂😂😂

I AM JOKING.

For me, I discovered that when I am able to mentally decide that my anxiety is coming from situations or life events that I just don’t have control over, I am able to let things go a little, I’m able to mentally turn the control over to God. This helps decrease my stress a lot.

After following these 3 steps I am usually way better. I also have a notebook where I write down things that give me anxiety. This allows me to record it and mentally tell myself I can think about it later and I don’t need to continually stress about it.

Relieving the physical stresses put on my body can be really difficult, anxiety makes me way more tired. Here what’s helping my body after an anxiety crisis:

⁃ Exercise

⁃ Massaging my hands and feet

⁃ Applying some essential oils, lavender, wild orange

I recently found out that taking out any processed sugar and gluten in my diet are making a huge difference.

I wrote this blog to maybe help others who struggle with anxiety. Life can be difficult and when your brain decides to give you anxiety and stress it can be a nightmare.

I will probably never get totally rid of my anxiety, I will always have to deal with it, but I’m learning ways I can manage it.

Dessert French Toast Recipe

Like many of America’s favorite French foods, French Bread was invited by the poor people who improvised or created meals out of very cheap ingredients or out leftover food. Some other examples of other “poor” people’s dishes are Crepes, Escargot, French Onion Soup, French Fries, and many mushroom dishes.
French people typically buy their bread every day or two fresh from the local baker. Without preservatives, the bread starts to go hard after two or three days. In order to use the very hard bread, the French started dipping it in a mixture of eggs and milk to soften it up and then browned it on a skillet. The French name for it is “Pain Perdu” which directly translates to “Lost Bread,” but a more appropriate name might have been “Saved Bread” because the poor were literally trying to use every scrap of food they had.
But as recipes do mine has evolved from early French peasants to a mouthwatering fancy dessert! If you do it with brioche it will become the super luxury dessert. This is becoming a very popular dessert in really fancy restaurants with famous chefs. So, I hope you enjoy my “Famous French Toast” recipe.
In France, we don’t serve this dessert with toppings, but I know how much Americans LOVE toppings so I added some delicious examples.

INGREDIENTS

  • 6 slices of bread any kind (brioche if you want super fancy)
  • 2–3 tbsp butter

Egg Mixture Ingredients:

  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tsp pure cane sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Mix all ingredients for the Egg Mixture in a bowl.
  2. Melt 1 tbsp butter in a non-stick skillet over medium heat.
  3. Dunk a piece of bread quickly into the egg mixture. Coat both sides and place it in the skillet.
  4. Repeat with more slices to fill the pan (do 2 or 3 at a time).
  5. Cook for 2 1/2 – 3 minutes on each side until the surface is golden brown, then transfer to serving plates.
  6. Add more butter into the pan and cook remaining bread.
  7. Serve with your favorite topping

Topping Ideas:

  • Maple syrup, butter, and powdered sugar
  • Nutella
  • Jam – whatever kind you like 🙂
  • Macerated Strawberries (Toss 8 oz. of strawberries with 1 tbsp of sugar, set aside for 20 minutes. The strawberries will soften and sweat, and create a bit of syrup—yummy!)

Rillettes Maison Recipe

Rillettes, pronounced, “Ree-ette” is a cooked meat spread that is typically slathered on top of a delicious slice of French baguette or bread. They are seriously one of my huge weaknesses. When I go to France I can’t wait to go to the grocery store or the butcher and get my Frenchy little hands on some!

In America, I am usually forced to make my own rillette spread, which is well worth the work. At first, Americans typically think it’s a little weird but if you give it a chance I guarantee you will become addicted. Rillettes are long, slow-cooked meats, usually cooked in their own fat, and a few herbs and seasoning. The spread is kind of like pulled pork with a softer flavor and shredded into tiny pieces and eaten cold. They are so yummy.

For a quick, easy appetizer, spread rillettes on toasted baguette, sprinkle lightly with freshly cracked black pepper and salt. (Here’s a link to my French bread recipe, it’s the perfect bread to eat with rillettes.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 pounds boneless, skinless pork shoulder, cut into 1 1/2-inch chunks
  • Kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil, lard, or duck fat
  • 4 bay leaves
  • 6 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 large shallots, very roughly chopped
  • 4 medium cloves garlic, split in half

DIRECTIONS

  1. Preheat oven to 325ºF.
  2. In a large ovenproof baking dish, mix all the ingredients.
  3. Tightly cover the dish with foil or a well-fitting lid, and cook in the center of the oven it for 3 hours, until the meat is falling apart.  It is important to keep checking the dish to make sure the meat is not drying out as it cooks and add more water if needed.
  4. Once cooked, remove the dish from the heat, leave the foil or lid in place and allow the meat to cool in the dish for 30 to 45 minutes until it is warm.
  5. Remove the lid and discard the bay leaf and any little pieces of meat which may have dried too far.
  6. Shred and stir the meat and fat with a large fork until it resembles a chunky, creamy spread, if correctly cooked this will be very easy to do.
  7. Place the rillettes in a serving pot, level with the back of a spoon and pour any remaining fat in the cooking dish over the surface which helps to keep the rillettes moist.
  8. Chill them for at least 24 hours before serving. The pâté will keep for several days untouched, once you have started eating use within 72 hours.

My Massive Crush on Sweater Season!

Yep the cooler weather is totally fine with me! Here in Utah it just turned cooooold. And I am happy, happy, happy! I am done with warm temperatures.

This week is really busy for me, I need to pack to visit my family in France and it’s not getting done 🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️. I even had trouble finding time to take pictures of my outfits. So today I decided I would make time no matter how huge my todo list was.

This outfit is a fall look that I love! Seriously, it’s fun and screams, “Yay, it’s fall!”

I love the long cardigan with a jacket look and this color is really perfect for fall 🙂

I know not everyone loves fall colors, so if you hate this color, choose one you love in long cardigan. One word of warning, don’t wear a gray shirt with any of these color cardigans: navy, dark brown, or beige. Those colors do not look good together.

Link for dupe cardigan: https://tinyurl.com/y9s2kxhf

I chose to wear this beautiful cardigan with a striped gray button shirt. I love button shirt way to much but remember I am French. 😂😂

Link for similar shirt: https://tinyurl.com/yagcsjw6

One of my friends today talked to me about how difficult is to find great button shirts when you are blessed in the chest area! So I have one trick for that problem, you will find a ton of different options for button shirts if you look for a “boyfriend” style button shirt, you will have way more room.

And yes, I am once again wearing mom cropped jeans, they are very much in style in Europe. So yep, I’m super French today! These jeans are so cute, check out these other posts for ideas for them here and here.

Link for the jeans: https://tinyurl.com/yazudja7

Now for the real fun, these boots are fantastic, they crossed my path recently in Tjmaxx and they fell in love with me. 🙂 I had a huge battle with them but they won. Seriously, in boots this fall I think these are the number one style to have.

Link similar boots: https://tinyurl.com/yaw66pue

Life can be hard when every single time you go somewhere some treasure wants to go home with you. Most of the time I am strong, but sometimes they win.

I hope you are enjoying my blogs. Please subscribe, I’m working on some really fun and useful fashion and color guides that you won’t want to miss!

Easy and Yummy – Crusty French Bread Recipe

This is a bread that you can make and it will turn out AMAZING. Takes only 2.5 hours. Maybe a little longer the very first time, but the second, 2.5 hours and it tastes really really good.

The crackly brown crust here is the result of baking this bread in a dutch oven. By keeping the lid on while the bread bakes, you create a nice steamy atmosphere inside the pot – and the steam is what gives the bread that crispy, magical crust.

Prep Time: 1 hour 30 mins
Cook Time: 45 mins
Yield: 1 loaf (about 6 servings)

INGREDIENTS

  • 2.25 tsp active dry yeast
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 1 1/4 cups warm water (about 100 degrees F)
  • 1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
  • 2.5 cups All-Purpose Flour, plus extra for dusting

INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Combine yeast, sugar, and warm water in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook (you could also mix this dough by hand if you like—just use a large mixing bowl instead).
  2. Let the yeast proof for about 5 minutes, until the mixture looks nice and foamy.
  3. Add kosher salt to the bowl.
  4. Add flour to bowl a bit at a time and mix on low speed until all flour is incorporated and the dough has just started to pull away from the sides of the bowl.
  5. Turn off the mixer and remove the bowl and dough hook.
  6. Lightly flour all sides of your dough (don’t mix the flour in – it’s just to keep the dough from sticking) and turn it over inside the mixing bowl to coat with flour on all sides. Cover with a tea towel and let rise on the counter for about 1 hour, until the dough has doubled in size.
  7. When the dough has risen, lightly flour a large cutting board. Tip the dough out of the bowl and onto the cutting board. DO NOT PUNCH THE DOUGH DOWN – you want to keep all the air bubbles intact so you have an airy, delicious loaf of bread. (If the dough is sticking to the bowl a little bit, wet your hand with a bit of water and gently separate the dough from the bowl to get it all out).
  8. Sprinkle a bit of flour across the top of the dough, then begin shaping it into a round loaf. It’s good to pull each corner of the dough in towards the center (like you’re folding an envelope) a few times, then flip the dough over and tap it into a nice round loaf.
  9. Flour a proofing basket or a small mixing bowl and place your loaf into it seam-side down. Cover with a tea towel and let rise another 30 minutes or so.
  10. While bread proofs, place an empty dutch oven (with the lid on) in your oven and heat to 460º F.
  11. When the oven is hot, use oven mitts to pull the dutch oven out and remove the lid.
  12. Tip your bread dough gently out of the proofing basket back onto your floured cutting board, and then carefully place it – seam side UP, this time – into the hot dutch oven. (You can use a piece of parchment paper here to make this easier if you like).
  13. Put your oven mitts back on, put the dutch oven lid back on the pot, and slide the whole thing back into your hot oven.
  14. Cook bread for 30 minutes.
  15. After 30 minutes, remove the lid from your dutch oven. The bread should be crusty and lightly browned. Continue cooking, uncovered, for 10-20 minutes more until the bread has deepened in color and you have a beautiful brown crust.
  16. When the bread is done, use oven mitts to pull the pot out of your oven. Use a long spatula to lift the bread out of the dutch oven and onto a cooling rack. Let cool for at least 20 minutes before cutting into it. Slice, butter, and enjoy!

The Perfect Fall Top!

Oh my gosh guys, I recently found a new online boutique, Janey Laine Co and I’m very excited about it. They have very very cute clothes. I decided to immediately buy one of their blouses and it did not disappoint. The quality was exceptional and it gave me confidence in their products. I will for sure be spending a lot of money on their stuff soon. 🤦🏼‍♀️🤦🏼‍♀️

This camel top is definitely my 10 top favorite pieces for this fall. The fabric is so soft, it’s true to size.

Link for the top: https://tinyurl.com/yb73bbgx

I love love the details on the sleeves. It gives this top a real French flair. It’s delicate and I LOVE the simplicity and class it has. 

I decided to pair it with this fantastic new necklace that I found at Downeast Outfitters. It’s a very trendy accessory right now and I really like how it stands out on this simple top—it’s the perfect match!

Link for the necklace: https://tinyurl.com/y8atcner

For the bottom, I decided to pair it with black cropped skinny jeans. Yes, yes cropped jeans are IN style this fall. They are REALLY fashionable in France too.

Dupe for the jeans: https://tinyurl.com/y7xqnd33

For footwear, I add these shoes. They are so comfy that I want to wear every single day. LOL

Link for the shoes from China: https://tinyurl.com/ydge3qzh

If you don’t want to wait 3 weeks, I found a gorgeous version from Nordstrom.

Link for similar shoes from the USA: https://tinyurl.com/ycv2eovp

This outfit is simple, but French girls have a saying, “Less is better than too much.”

Thanks for checking out this outfit. Be sure to subscribe to my blog to not miss any French fashion tips! Merci.

My “Secret” Crêpe Recipe and The RIGHT WAY to eat a Crêpe

Crêpes are the most popular French dessert in the whole world. Everyone knows what they are and about them. In this recipe, I am giving away one of my secrets! Hint: it’s all about the heavy cream and the other ingredients.

THE WRONG WAY TO EAT A CREPE

Also before we start, I want to teach you the proper way to fold and eat a crêpe. I don’t know why lots of people in America want to roll their crêpes. It’s NOT A BURRITO! This is a serious sin that should be punished by death (okay, maybe not death, but at least a heavy flogging!)

THE RIGHT WAY TO EAT A CREPE

The RIGHT way to eat a crêpe is to add any desired toppings and then FOLD it in half and then fold it in half again. Then you can either eat it directly off of your plate using a knife and a fork or if eating it with your hands you pick it up holding the rounded open edges up so the toppings don’t fall out. Then you eat it from the top down.

NEVER EAT THE POINTED FOLD FIRST, your toppings will fall out and you’ll look like a fool. It’s like eating an ice cream cone upside down. (Okay rant over)

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk
  • 3 large eggs
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • Additional butter for cooking
  • Toppings as desired (most popular include: bananas, Nutella, strawberries, or jam)

SPECIAL EQUIPMENT:

  • Crêpe pan
  • Flexible plastic spatula

The special equipment really makes all the difference. I recommend purchasing these online to really do crêpes right.

If you can get it, I recommend an authentic French Crepe pan from T-fal.

Link to crêpe pan: https://tinyurl.com/yazepfts

Link to the crêpe spatula: http://a.co/d/3lNUI7v

DIRECTIONS

  1. In a blender, combine milk, heavy cream and eggs. Mix on medium-high speed until foamy, about 10 seconds.
  2. Turn blender to low speed and with blender going, add sugar and salt. Blend on high speed for a few seconds, then turn blender back to low and add butter and vanilla and then once again, blend for several seconds on high after each addition.
  3. Turn blender off. Add flour all at once and blend until just combined.
  4. Place crêpe pan over moderately high heat. Spread a tiny amount of butter in pan and heat until butter just begins to smoke. Pour 1/4 to 1/3 cup batter into the pan. As you pour, quickly tilt the pan in all directions to spread a thin layer of batter across the bottom. Pour in just enough batter to cover the pan.
  5. Cook crêpe over moderately high heat until bubbles just begin to form on the exposed surface, about one to two minutes. Lift up the edge to check the cooking process—if the crêpe starts to burn before it is cooked through, turn down the heat. If it is not nicely browned after two minutes, turn up the heat.
  6. When the underside of crêpe is browned, flip and cook another minute or less, until the other side is browned.
  7. Remove from pan and keep warm in the oven, loosely covered with foil.
  8. Grease pan with a very small amount of butter as needed and repeat process. Continue until all batter is used, stacking cooked crêpes on a plate in the oven.
  9. To serve, place the crepe on a plate and put toppings on 1/4 of the surface area. Then fold in half and then in half again. (See my eating crepes rant at the beginning of the post)