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Sheila's Posts

Check out all the posts by Sheila ~ (Owner/Author)

About Sheila Thomas

Hi, My name is Sheila and I am the Living Smart Girl. My goal is to bring everyone the latest and greatest tips and advice on fitness, healthy choices, recipes, shopping, beauty, home and garden, family and parenting, daily deals, travel, and so much more. I love fitness, but life is more than just exercise and when you visit Living Smart Girl you can connect the dots and live a well rounded life ~ the Living Smart way :)

I love working online and spend most of my day blogging, and researching new topics and tips to bring my readers.

Join me on Facebook at

Sheila Thomas

Toffee Almond Coffee Cake


Toffee Almond Coffee Cake

Here’s a yummy recipe for you, using a Tastefully Simple Almond Pound Cake.

Ingredients ~

1 Package Tastefully Simple Absolute Almond Pound Cake
1  1/2  Sticks Butter  (softened/melted)
1  1/2 Cups Water
1 Packet Hills Bros. English Toffee Iced Coffee
1 Tbsp Instant Coffee
3/4 Cups English Toffee Bits
1/2 Cup White Chocolate Chips

Directions ~

Mix water with packet of iced coffee and instant coffee.
Mix cake mix, butter, coffee (water and coffee mix) in large bowl.    Add toffee bits and chips and mix good.  Pour into 9×9 greased cake pan. Bake at 350 Degrees for 50 min. or until toothpick inserted in middle comes out clean.

Topping ~

Drizzle with warm caramel and sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Enjoy hot, or room temp….  it’s perfect either way.

This was a hit, and lasted only 1 day in the house.   Totally worth all the extra squats I had to do.  LOL!!



Can You Smell Fall? #FebrezeFall

Febreze1 Disclosure ~  This is a sponsored post on behalf of SheSpeaks and Febreze.  All opinions are 100% that of Living Smart Girl’s.
#FebrezeFall  @Walmart  @SheSpeaksUp.
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Can you smell fall in the air?    I sure can and I have to say, even though I hate winter, I do love fall and all the prettiness that it brings.  I love the changing leaves, the cooler nights and the smell in the air.  With Febreze you can get that fall smell in your home and car and bring some fall ideas to life with their great tips for recipes, home decor and activities.

I got a fun Scentspiration box from Febreze with the Home Harvest Collection inside.  Isn’t this cute!! It is a little farm house/barn box and filled with a cute recipe card box, recipe cards with great recipes, activities and home decor ideas, some fun Febreze goodies like plug in air fresheners and one for my car as well.   I put the plug in in my basement to help bring some fall smells there, and stuck the car one in my new vehicle.   Have you picked up some Febreze in the fall scents to use in your home or car?   What ones are your favorites?  Do you like different ones in each room or the same thru the whole house?   I like to keep the same thru the whole house generally.  When you think of fall, what scent comes to mind ?

These cards are so fun that came in the kit.  Great recipes like Iced Coffee Float, Sugared Cranberries, Oven Bakes Smores, Roasted Pears, & Creamed Corn.   Have you ever made any of these?    I have not, but think I will have to try the Iced Coffee Float.   How about toasted almonds?  Ever tried those.  I haven’t but just thinking about them, I want to.

If you like to decorate for fall the cards have some fun ideas.  Like, how to make an Acorn Centerpiece, Lollipot Bouquet, Cranberry Tree, Leaf Wreath, or Lightbulb Pear.  The Acorn Centerpiece and Lightbulb Pears sound fun an like something I would decorate with.  What kind of fall decorations do you have that you made?  I would love to see pics, if you have made something fun you want to share.  Do you use Febreze when making your fun decorations ?

Fall means more play time out in the yard for many, as the bugs are less and for some, the weather is more enjoyable.  (Those in southern states).  There are many fun activities one can enjoy in the fall.  Gather some of your girlfriends together, or even the kids and try making one of these cool things ~ Coasters, Burlap Bows, Owl Almonds, Spiced Oranges, or Whistling with an Acorn Top.  Do you enjoy some fun activities in the fall?  Tell me about them.

No matter what you are doing, the Febreze Home Harvest Collection can help you get in the mood and get your home ready for fall.    And, don’t forget about the fact that Febreze truly eliminates odors so your company will only notice the fresh smell of fall in your home.
See how cute my Scentspiration box from Febreze with the Home Harvest Collection is.





Disclosure ~  This is a sponsored post on behalf of SheSpeaks and Febreze.  All opinions are 100% that of Living Smart Girl’s.
#FebrezeFall  @Walmart  @SheSpeaksUp.
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Congrats, You Lost That Excess Weight, But Are You Truly Healthy?


Congrats, You Lost That Excess Weight, But Are You Truly Healthy?


Just because you lose weight, doesn’t mean you’re healthy. People tend to have this hangup with physical appearances, as though they tell you what’s going on inside the body. Most of the time, people harbor nutritional deficiencies, infections, and other problems that aren’t fixed by simply cutting calories. And then there’s “skinny fat.” Here’s how to assess your true health.


Get Advanced Nutritional Screening


Advanced nutritional screening involves an RBC (red blood cell) micronutrient test that will assess your micronutrient status on a cellular level. Believe it or not, it’s possible to be very thin, feel fine, and still be deficient in nutrients.


The most common deficiencies are B12, B6, magnesium, and vitamin D. Now, Vitamin D testing is widely available and relatively inexpensive – especially through insurance. Make sure your doctor tests both 20OHD and 1,25 dihydroxyvitamin D. Why both? Because they measure different aspects of vitamin D (which is actually a powerful hormone in your body). You want to know the precursor or pre-vitamin D (25OHD) and the evidence of the actual hormone (1,25 dihydroxy). This will tell you both the amount you have to make the hormone and the conversion to the hormone itself.


If you’re found to be deficient, your doctor can order IV nutritional therapy to help correct the deficiency and you can make dietary changes to help correct a deficiency over the long-term.


Assess Other Lifestyle Habits


Do you use drugs on a regular basis? What about alcohol? It’s incredibly common, and yet this has a severe and dramatic negative impact on your health if it’s adding additional stress to your body. A little alcohol abuse intervention goes a long way, and it can help you get to a point where you’re health on the inside, and out.


Move More


If you sit in a chair all day long, you’re doing yourself a disservice. You could also be increasing your risk for heart disease. How? Because humans are biologically designed to move – a lot. Studies show that, on average, older women who sit the most are more likely to die during a 12-year followup. Those sitting more than 11 hours a day are at the highest risk. Get out of your chair and move. Move like your life depended on it, because it does.


Adopt A Weight Training Regimen


Getting in the gym, and lifting weights, will not only make you stronger, they will make you healthier. How? By building muscle, strengthening tendons and adding density to your bones. Over time, those changes “stick,” permanently changing your physiology. That added strength becomes a sort of “muscular retirement savings,” – most valuable in your old age when you’re at your highest risk of falling and injury.


Stop Smoking


Smoke yourself thin? Smoking may help you lose weight, but it’s not cool anymore. It puts additional stress on your lungs, and the ingredients in cigarettes are carcinogenic. So, you won’t get heart disease, but you may die of cancer.


Get Rid Of Skinny Fat


If you’re thin, but you can still “pinch and inch” around your stomach, you might not be out of the woods yet. Lots of women lose weight, and yet can’t seem to shake the 10 lbs sitting on their stomach – this may be the most insidious fat there is. If you’re struggling with “stubborn fat” or a small pot belly that feels “hard” on the outside, you’re in trouble.


Stubborn fat is fat that usually resides around the thighs (in women) and over the abdomen. Sometimes, it also resides in the butt. While butt fat isn’t nearly as bad as abdominal fat, it’s not necessarily healthy either. Getting to a good weight means minimizing your body fat, and that can’t be done with crash diets. It can only be done with good lifestyle and a sensible diet, along with appropriate medical intervention, when needed.


If your have a “hard belly” but it still sticks out, you might still have a problem called “visceral fat.” This is fat that accumulates around your organs and is especially problematic. You need to stay in touch with your doctor, and work to minimize or eliminate this ASAP.


Kevin Martel has been a medical professional for several years. With a strong passion for healthy living and a desire to encourage those around him, he often blogs about clear ways of achieving daily health for the everyday person.


Get it Now ~ The Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle

Click the banner above to order yours.

We all want to make better health and lifestyle decisions for ourselves and those we love. We want to lose some weight, have more energy, use greener products, create nutritious meals for our families, get fit, and feel confident that we’re doing all we can to prevent serious diseases.

But it’s so easy to feel overwhelmed and intimidated by the masses of healthy living advice out there – to the point where we’re frozen into complete inaction instead!

That’s where The Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle comes in. For the ridiculously low price of just $29.97 (for the PDF version) or $39.97 (for the eReader version), you can get access to a carefully curated collection of eBooks and eCourses with a total combined value of $1,030.

The bundle contains a wealth of information from the very finest healthy living writers out there – but there’s no risk of getting overwhelmed! A useful Getting Started Guide is included with your purchase, which will help you identify the most valuable resources for your specific health priorities.

The Ultimate Bundles team has done all the hard work for you – finding the top experts across a number of healthy living fields and combining their products into one essential collection. If you want to take control of your health, there’s no better way to start!

The Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle will only be on sale for 6 days – from 8am EST on Wednesday, September 10 until 11:59pm EST on Monday, September 15.

But don’t wait until the last moment – there are only 30,000 bundles available and once they’re gone, they’re gone!

You can buy with confidence because your purchase is covered by the Ultimate Bundles one-year guarantee: you have a full year to enjoy all the books and courses in the bundle, and if you don’t feel like it’s made a huge difference to your family’s health, you’ll get your money back in full!


Click here for more info or to buy now.

As if this great collection of eBooks and eCourses wasn’t enough, the Ultimate Bundles team has also partnered with 10 fantastic companies who’ve each agreed to give a special bonus to every buyer. The bonuses have a total value of over $200 – more than 5 times the price of the Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle itself!

The bonuses include free goodies aplenty: a bottle of Healthy Mouth Blend from OraWellness, a baltic amber bracelet from Sweetbottoms Boutique, and a starter culture from Cultures For Health. You’ll also get gift sets from Made On Skin Care Products and Homegrown Collective.

There are virtual goodies, too – a 4-month membership to and a 3-month premium membership to meal planning service Tradishen. And as if all that weren’t enough, there are also $15 gift certificates for, and Trilight Health. There is a nominal shipping charge for many of the bonuses, based on each company’s standard shipping rates, and is usually $3-5.

Here’s what you need to know about the sale:

When? 7 a.m. EST Wednesday, September 10 until 11:59 p.m. EST Monday, September 15


What? 73 eBooks and 7 audio & eCourses, PLUS over $200 worth of bonus products you’ll really use!


Where? Purchase the bundle HERE.

How much? Well now, that’s the best part. The entire package is worth $1030, and it’s selling for less than $30. Sweet deal, right?

We think there’s something here for everyone, and don’t forget… our Getting Started Guide will show you exactly which resources cover the topics and health concerns that matter most to you!


We know you’re eager to see exactly what’s included in this bundle, so head on over to the website, where you can see the full list of eBooks, eCourses, and bonus offers.

When you’re ready, you can either buy here directly, or right through the website. It’s fast and easy, and you’ll have your bundle sent to you via email within minutes.


Click here for more info or to buy now.

Remember, this bundle is available for 6 days only, from 7 a.m. (EST) on Wednesday, September 10th to 11:59 p.m. (EST) on Monday,


Disclosure: I have included affiliate links in this post. Read the fine print about this bundle and read the answers to frequently asked questions about the bundle.

Take the Nature Valley No Barrier Pledge

Take the Nature Valley No Barrier Pledge
#MyAdventure #GetOUTThere

Have you ever been sitting there staring at the TV, computer, smart phone or just at nothing and all of a sudden it hits you!  Life is so short and you are just letting it pass by.   Well, it hits me all the time!  To much actually.   There is so much a person has to do and take care of on a daily basis that sometimes life just feels as though it is slipping away and there are so many places to go and things to see and do that I start to panic and feel I will never be able too.   See, I wasn’t born with a silver spoon in my mouth so I have to work for those things.  I have to earn a living and plan ahead if I want to enjoy life’s adventures.  I know this is the case for many and also for many they will never get to see what all awaits us in this beautiful world.    Well, even though I wasn’t born rich, and have to plan my trips and save for them, at least when I do them I can actually see the beauty that awaits me.  How would you like to experience life but not be able to see it.  That is how Erik Weihenmayer is experiencing his journey down the Grand Canyon in a kayak for 21 days.  Now, that is what I call an amazing journey and one inspirational man!  277 miles in a kayak down raging rivers… Yikes!     Check out Erik telling you about it in his video ~


Follow Erik’s journey on the Nature Valley TUmblr page.


Who is Erik ?   Erik is the only blind adventurer to ever climb to the seven highest summits in the world.  This amazing man is now taking on the adventure of kayaking the Grand Canyon’s Colorado River along with his fellow blind adventurer Lonnie Bedwell.

This expedition serves to inspire people to not limit themselves, eliminate barriers in their lives and live life to its fullest.  Nature Valley is joining Erik Weihenmayer in inviting people to pledge to get out there and live a No Barriers Life.

The Expedition

  •      The “No Barriers Grand Canyon Expedition” is a 21-day, 277 mile journey through some of the world’s most challenging whitewater terrain in the Colorado River.
  •      Erik Weihenmayer will be supported by an experienced paddling team, and joined by accomplished kayaker and Navy veteran Lonnie Bedwell.  Together, Erik and Lonnie will demonstrate the power of harnessing inner strength to overcome challenging barriers.
  •      Preparation for the Expedition has been extensive, with both Weihenmayer and Bedwell spending the last several years training and developing innovative systems for kayaking rapids with support from high-tech radios and verbal commands from river guides.
  •      The trip will begin on September 7 at Lees Ferry, nine miles south of the Arizona-Utah border. Erik and his team expect to complete the expedition on or around September 28 at Pearce Ferry, which marks the boundary between Lake Mead and the Grand Canyon.

Follow along on Nature Valley’s Tumblr:  

If you are a Tumblr user, please repost and follow!

Weihenmayer Featured in Nature Valley Advertising

Weihenmayer is featured in a series of new television and digital advertisements “Feel Nature’s Energy” for Nature Valley, highlighting the unique ways in which Erik experiences nature. Links to videos above!

Want to go above and beyond? Take the No Barriers Pledge

  •      As a founding member of No Barriers USA, Weihenmayer advocates for the organization’s mission to empower people with the message, “what’s within you is stronger than what’s in your way.”
  •      You can join Nature Valley and Weihenmayer in the goal of encouraging one million people to live a No Barriers Life by visiting today.

About Nature Valley

  •      Nature Valley has a long history of commitment to nature, outdoor activities and the national parks.

  •      The brand finds inspiration from the beauty of nature and the way people connect with nature – whether that’s from a fearless adventure like those undertaken by Weihenmayer or an everyday hike.

  •      It’s Nature Valley’s belief that experiencing nature enables people to feel most alive and Weihenmayer is a great demonstration of our belief.


I might not be as adventurous or brave as Erik but I do like to do some milder stuff like some mountain/rock climbing.  We love to travel and have seen some amazing things and had a lot of fun in our journeys.   A few years ago we went to South Dakota and drove thru Needles Highway where we stopped and climbed up some big rocks to get a good view.  Here I am sitting there in the sun..  ;)


Since today is my 43rd Birthday, maybe it’s time to plan another trip with some adventure in it to make sure I am living my life to it’s fullest and not letting things pass me by.     Tell me, where should I go and what should I do?  I need ideas and maybe a “dare” or two.

Disclosure ~  Living Smart Girl received compensation for cooperation with Nature Valley and Sverve on this campaign.  All opinions expressed are solely that of Living Smart Girl’s. 

$100 Amazon Gift Card Giveaway


Makobi Scribe is bringing you this Amazon Instagram blast where one lucky reader will win a $100 Amazon gift card. The giveaway is open to everyone and provided by Makobi Scribe. Good Luck! If you are a blogger, you can sign up for this blast here.

Calling All Bloggers

Join us for the ESSIO Aromatherapy Shower Diffuser Giveaway Campaign.

Come on over and fill out the form here at ESSIO to join in.
The first 100 bloggers to sign up and promote this giveaway on their blog will receive an ESSIO Aromatherapy Diffuser Kit.

Turn your shower into a spa with one of the essential oil blends.

The Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle – Get Yours!

Want a great bundle for a great low price?  This healthy living bundle is so jam packed with a ton of great info, freebies, tips, advice and so much more.

But you don’t have long to buy this bundle!!

Take action now, because The Ultimate Healthy Living Bundle will only be on sale for 6 days – from 8am EST on Wednesday, September 10 until 11:59pm EST on Monday, September 15. And don’t wait until the last moment – there are only 30,000 bundles available and once they’re gone, they’re gone!

You can buy with complete confidence because you’re covered by our 1-year money back guarantee. Yes, you have a whole year to watch and read every product, and take advantage of all the bonuses – and if you don’t feel that they’ve made a huge difference to your family’s health, just tell us and we’ll give you a full refund.

Click the above banner for all the info, and check back tomorrow when it’s on sale.

Workout of the Week M/W/F Workout 3


Do you enjoy our workout of the week posts?
We love comments, shares, pins, tweets, etc.    Show your love for our post by sharing with others.

Is there a certain body part or type of workout you would like to see?   Leave us a comment and tell us.

As with all our workouts of the week, go at your own pace, use weights that work with you for each workout, and keep in mind.. no pain, no gain ;)

Give us your feedback as to how you are doing.   We love to hear what others think.

Disclosure ~  Living Smart Girl (Sheila) is not a certified personal trainer.  No claim of weight loss or fitness level is guaranteed by doing our workouts.  We are sharing with you, the same workouts we do in our own home.
Please consult a physician before doing any exercise.

7 Popular Skin Conditions and Treatments

7 Popular Skin Conditions and Treatments

Many of us strive to have smooth, soft skin. While you may not realize it, there are affordable cosmetic procedures to lessen or fix common skin imperfections. Always consult with a dermatologist or health care professional before embarking on your skin enhancing journey.

Read on for common skin treatments.

  • Laser Hair Removal. Who doesn’t hate shaving every other day? Some people have shied away from this procedure due to fear of pain, but there have been advancements in laser hair removal technology that have improved upon this. Many people describe this experience as a slight discomfort or a rubber band snapping on their skin. You can use topical anesthetics to help minimize discomfort if it is a concern.
  • Laser Vein Therapy. Have unsightly spider veins, broken blood vessels or varicose veins? Laser vein therapy uses a form of therapeutic heat that goes deep into skin tissue.  There have been technological advances regarding these lasers as well. The Yag Laser at Your Laser Skin Care uses a patented Dynamic Cooling Device ™ (DCD ™) that protects outer layers of skin with a cool burst of cryogen.
  • Botox. Botox is used both medically and cosmetically. Botox injections are popular treatments for wrinkles between the eyes and across the forehead. It can also reduce crow’s feet and frown lines. Botox works by paralyzing the muscle so it is unable to contract.
  • Dermal Fillers. Dermal fillers have a few different uses. You can plump up thin lips, smooth wrinkles and fill in depressed areas (such as the corner of your mouth). Treatments can last six months or more.
  • IPL PhotoFacial. Suffer from sun spots, broken facial veins, rosacea, wrinkles, pigment spots, hemangiomas, melisma, bags or dyschromia?  IPL PhotoFacial may be for you. Whatever the blemish, IPL PhotoFacial uses an intense pulsed laser to target the blemish. Age spots will form a crust and fall off. Spider veins coagulate under the heat. Normal skin will not be affected by the laser. It also helps promote new collagen and connective tissue growth, enhancing the appearance of young-looking skin.
  • Latisse. If you are pining for longer eyelashes, then consider Latisse. The FDA approved Latisse for use in darkening and lengthening eyelashes in 2008. It was discovered during clinical trials for a glaucoma drug. It is thought to lengthen the growth phase of eyelashes.
  • Skin Tightening. Laser skin tightening is an alternative treatment option for wrinkles and acne scars. There is little discomfort and can be done over your lunch! Skin tightening works but using a laser that tightens collagen fibers deep within your skin. It improves facial contours and promotes healthier collagen.

No matter what skin condition you suffer from, there is an enhancement available for you. If you’re hesitant to undergo laser treatments or injections, look into products to try first. Rest assured, however, that cosmetic treatments are minimally painful and often will save you money in the long run. For example, you may be hesitant to spend money on laser hair removal, but you will spend more over your lifetime on shaving or other hair removal products.