Seashells and Sit Ups

Get Social and Say HI

Ever wonder what I’m up to when I’m not writing here? I’m actually still “blogging” – just on my social channels. Come say hi🙂


wonder which ones I use most and who follows me where? Instagram is where all the magic is for me. As a mom, I had to pick one channel, and what better way than to capture my life through a camera lens? I love using Instagram, and often add clickable links to my bio so you can follow along with me here for additional details/information. However, that being said, I do utilize other channels, just not as frequently.

I N S T A G R A M (34.5k)

P I N T E R E S T (3,100 fellow pinners)

I N S T A G R A M  S T O R Y (average 900 views)

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Y O U T U B E (136 subscribers)

S N A P C H A T (400 average views)

E T S Y (92 sales)

N E W S L E T T E R  S U S C R I B E R S (1000+)

Baked Apple Cinnamon Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal


Fall can be felt, seen, smelled, and enjoyed. All of those things ring true with this hearty, delicious, festive recipe. Not only will it make your taste buds dance, it will fill your belly with love, and make your house smell divine as well!

From my kitchen to yours, enjoy this tasty oatmeal filled with fall spices + joy. Oh and PS – even if you’re not a fan of oatmeal, you can enjoy these delicious apples that would be magical over vanilla ice cream, atop yogurt, or folded into pie crust or a strudel. Just slice the apple instead of cubing it😉

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Apple Cinnamon Pumpkin Spice Oatmeal


  • 1 large organic apple, washed and chopped into cubes
  • 1/2 teaspoon coconut oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon coconut sugar (or brown sugar)
  • 1/2 teaspoon pumpkin spice
  • 1/2 cup cooked oatmeal; steel cut or rolled oats
  • 3 tablespoons unsweetened coconut milk or water
  • If desired – add 2 teaspoons pumpkin puree to oatmeal



  1. Add coconut oil to medium-sized skillet and warm
  2. Add cubed apples and sauté for about 3 minutes
  3. Remove apples and set aside in a bowl, leaving pan on low
  4. Add 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin spice to apples; tossing until evenly coated. Feel free to add more or less spice as desired. This is YOUR dish
  5. Cook oatmeal
  6. Add apples back to pan, stirring occasionally to avoid buying or sticking to pan
  7. Once oatmeal is cooked add coconut milk or water, and the same spices you added to apples; 1/2 teaspoon vanilla, 1/4 teaspoon cinnamon, and 1/4 teaspoon pumpkin spice to apples; stirring into oatmeal until blended and smooth. Feel free to add more or less spice as desired.
  8. If you’re craving even more pumpkin flavoring,  add 2 teaspoons pumpkin puree to oatmeal; blend
  9. Continue sautéing or “baking” apples until a nice sticky caramelization occurs from the sugar + spices
  10. Remove caramelized apples from pan and add atop oatmeal.
  11. Stir together and enjoy!



Gluten Free + Healthy Pumpkin Spice Muffins with Toasted Coconut + Apple Cinnamon


Last night the air was crisp, Tanner and I cleaned up our front yard and put a few Halloween decorations out, and this morning there’s a beautiful ocean breeze blowing ambiance of fall through the air and through our house. With all that nostalgia, it was time the scent of pumpkin spice filled our home as well, so I raided our pantry, turned on the oven, and got to baking. I wasn’t sure what my vision was, but it didn’t take long until these delicious, clean + healthy pumpkin muffins were born, delivered to the neighbors, and filling our bellies.


Pumpkin Spice Muffins with Toasted Coconut + Cinnamon Apples

  • Yields 30 muffins
  • Bake time: 25-30 minutes
  • Oven temp: 400 degrees F
  • Use all organic ingredients when possible


  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 6 teaspoons avocado oil
  • 1 3/4 cups Enjoy Life dark chocolate chips
  • 30 oz can pumpkin puree
  • 1 1/2 cups steel cut oats
  • 2 teaspoons cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1/s teaspoon ground ginger
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 5 tablespoons fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 4 cups gluten free flour of choice (I used brown rice flour, but my favorite is Trader Joe’s, as I find it gives the best consistency of other GF flours I’ve used. Coconut flour does not bake well, from my personal experience)
  • 3 eggs OR keep vegan and use 3/4 cup applesauce
  • 4 tablespoons applesauce (if making vegan and following the above substitute, still add this) OR 1 apple, chopped and baked (add to parchment paper sprayed with coconut oil + bake at 400 for 5 minutes, sprinkling top with cinnamon; then add to batter)
  • 3 tablespoons hemp seeds (I use Manitoba Harvest)
  • 4 tablespoons chia seeds (I use MamaChia)
  • 3 tablespoons raw, local honey (helps with local allergies)
  • 2 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 4 tablespoons shredded coconut, toasted
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut sugar
  • 4 tablespoons coconut milk or coconut cream



  1. Add all ingredients to a massive mixing bowl, OR use two bowls and add half and half if you need more room (makes 30 muffins, so that’s a lot of batter!)
  2. Stir until all ingredients are combined
  3. Add spoonfuls of batter into a muffin tin lined with muffin liners or coated with coconut or avocado oil (make sure it can handle up to 400 degrees F)
  4. Bake at 400 for 20-30 minutes, depending on your oven, or until a toothpick poked into the middle of muffin comes out clean
  5. Remove and set aside to cool.
  6. Style to upload to Instagram😉 and ENJOY!



This recipe is toddler approved in our house,

so hope you and your kiddos love it as much as we do!

Lots of Xs and Os from Tanner and I; HAPPY FALL!

xoxo, Shelley

Cowboy Burgers


I’m sitting here this morning watching the sun rise over the Grand Tetons, breathing in fresh mountain air, and being so thankful we have so many fun memories growing up coming here for almost 30 years (literally have come here since I was an infant!) 

Last night we grilled at our condo, and I took on burger duty. I whipped up a new recipe, and am so excited to share it with you, as it’s the perfect weekend BBQ main dish! Hope you enjoy these Cowboy Burgers as much as my family did.

C O W B O Y  B U R G E R S 

makes 10 burgers 

<< i n g r e d i e n t s >>

  • 2 1/2 pounds lean ground beef, chicken or turkey
  • 3 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
  • 1/2 cup Carolina BBQ sauce
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup bread crumbs, panko, or GF substitute 
  • 1 tablespoon steak seasoning of choice 
  • About 1/2″ cut off a block of sharp white cheddar, diced 
  • 1/2 onion, diced 
  • 1 jalepeno, seeds removed + diced 
  • 1 teaspoon worchister sauce 
  • Small handful of fresh parsley, washed + chopped
  • 1/2 teaspoon minced garlic 

<< d i r e c t i o n s >>

  1. Preheat BBQ
  2. Add all ingredients to a large mixing bowl
  3. Using hands, knead everything together until blended well
  4. Add more BBQ sauce if desired
  5. Shape into balls and smash into patties (about 5″ in diameter)
  6. Grease grill and cook burgers until cooked thoroughly (I don’t like them mooing, so cook well-done for safety)
  7. Top with goodies like grilled onions, grilled mushrooms, grilled peppers, cheddar cheese, lettuce, tomatoes, etc.! The toppings world is your oyster😉
  8. Say yee-haw and enjoy!
  9. Serve with one of my favorite sides like roasted veggie pasta salad, Mom’s pasta salad, rainbow salad, or more 

HOWDY from Jackson Hole, WY!

U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge and Dimensional Art Exposition

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San Diego Gets Extra Sandy During Labor Day Weekend

For The 5th Annual U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge

WHEN >>> Sept. 2 – Sept 5, 9 am-7 pm 

WHERE >>> ‘B’ Street Cruise Ship Pier, 1140 North Harbor Drive, Downtown San Diego 92101

USA Today has named it one of their 10 Best and American Express calls it one of the top 20 “Must See” seaside events in the world

The U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge is returning to San Diego and the ‘B’ Street Cruise Ship Pier downtown. This will be the fifth year that one of the world’s most important sand-sculpting competitions will be held on this built-for-the-occasion beach, with over 300 tons of sand dumped on the pier on San Diego’s Big Bay. It’s easy for sculptors to call it one of the most creative atmospheres in the world, as it takes place in America’s Finest City with sandcastles stretching west nearly 1,000 feet into the bay beneath the beautiful San Diego skyline.

It’s open to the public Sept. 2 – Sept. 5.

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Sculptors Background

World Master Class sand artists carve for four days to create the finest sculptures ever seen in Southern California. Sculptors come from all over the world to challenge the best from the U.S.  For 2016, three new international Masters will participate for the first time; Katsuhiko Chaen from Japan, Agnese Rudzite-Kirillova from Latvia, and Benjamin Probanza from Spain. Another new Master Sculptor addition to this year’s challenge will be Thomas Koet from Melbourne, Florida.

Last year’s grand prize winner was Melineige Beauregard of Canada. JOOheng Tan, from Singapore, took the Grand Prize in 2014, while Sandis Kondrats from Latvia won it in 2013. The last American winner was Rusty Croft from Carmel, CA. in 2012.

Where will this year’s winner be from? The U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia?

At stake, more than $60,000 in appearance, prize money and expenses … and national pride. Plus back by popular demand, the Cool California Carvers Class, which is comprised of seven teams of three professionals that will each be carving for two days.

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This family-friendly extravaganza offers a wonderful array of activities for guests of all ages.


  • It takes two full weeks from start-up to tear-down
  • Over 300 tons of sand are brought onto ‘B’ Street Pier in downtown San Diego
  • The public has just four days to see the sculptures, from September 2 – 5, 2016
  • It will feature 11 professional international Master Sculptors competing solo plus 7 teams of 3 in the Cool California Carver competition


  • The Dimensional Art Exposition – over 1,000 one-of-a-kind original works of art (metal, wood, glass, jewelry, hand-made clothing, wall-art, acrylic, fabric, gemstones, etc.) on display and for sale
  • Family Fun – Kid Zone with rides and sandcastle building lessons taught by professional artists
  • More than a dozen gourmet food trucks and a beer/wine garden
  • Live entertainment all weekend long
  • Special VIP area with great bay views

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The Dimensional Art Exposition

No matter how much you love them, you can’t buy the sand sculptures. But you can buy more than 1,000 works of art in other media, like metal, wood, glass, jewelry, hand-made clothing, wall-art, acrylic, fabric, gemstones and more. Many of the finest artists in the Southwest exhibit and sell their amazing one-of-a-kind art on the pier next to the majestic sandcastle creations at the show.

Family Fun — Live Entertainment, Gourmet Food Trucks, Kids Giant Sandbox & Rides

How would you like to have your kids taught to build sandcastles by professional sculptors who’ve created award winners in Amsterdam and Paris and Tokyo? For mom and dad there is a beer garden and the family can choose from over 100 kinds of yummy snacks and meals from gourmet food trucks.  Live bands will play during the weekend to really infuse the fun tone of this unique annual Labor Day event.


Take Transit

Easiest way to get to the event is by MTS trolley or bus to America Plaza/Santa Fe Depot, just 1 block South and 2 blocks East.  North County Coaster and Amtrak both terminate at that location.  You’ll get $2 off each adult ticket when you show proof of transit at the gate.  What could be easier?

Stay Downtown

Official hotels of the event are the wonderful boutique Sofia (, about 7 blocks East of the festival site on Broadway and Front Streets, and the newly renovated Wyndham San Diego Bayfront (, diagonally just across Harbor Drive from the show on the cruise ship pier.

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Your Attendance Helps Kids

A portion of proceeds from the event goes to local children’s educational charities.

  • The San Diego School of Creative and Performing Arts is a public arts magnet school that was named one of the best in the Nation by S. News and World Reports. Students are bussed from throughout the San Diego Unified School District and take classes in theater, music, dance, visual arts, video production, stagecraft and creative writing along with regular academic subjects.
  • Young Audiences of San Diego/Arts for Learning brings performers into elementary and middle schools to show kids what life in the arts is all about, yanks them out of their shells by teaching them to perform some of their ethnic songs and dance, and instills pride in self as they learn how to learn.
  • It’s All About the Kids Foundation helps less fortunate children through a network of 14 San Diego charities that have served over 11,000 kids. IAATK directly supports 10 previously homeless kids now in



Save on Tickets Right Now – Prices valid only through midnight, August 15, 2016. Buy now and save up to 33%!

 Friday only “Preview Day” Ticket

  • Kids (under 12 years), seniors (62+) – $6.00 (event day price at gate $8)
  • Active Military – Show I.D. at gate and get in FREE (Friday only – no need to buy tickets online)
  • Adults – $8.00 (event day price at gate $10)


Saturday – Monday Single Day Admission:

  • Kids (under 12-years), seniors (62+), active military with ID – $6.00 (event day price at gate $9)
  • Adults – $11.00 (event day price at gate $13)


Any 2-day Admission:

  • Kids (under 12-years), seniors, active military with ID – $10.00 (event day price at gate: $15)
  • Adults – $17.00 (event day price at gate $20)


V.I.P. Single Day Admission:

Online Only… Skip the “Buy Tickets” booth line and save!  Includes easy admission, 2 free beverages (beer, wine, soft-drinks — value up to $8 each; total $16), plus special shaded bay-front viewing area with deluxe seating and facilities, plus additional V.I.P. amenities to be announced. Good for any one-day V.I.P. admission for adults, kids and seniors on Friday, Saturday, Sunday or Monday. Prices increase 8/15/16.

All ages, any day: $27.00 (event day price at gate: $35)

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Celebrating National Watermelon Day with these Watermelon Recipes

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Dear Watermelons,

We’re over the moon excited to celebrate you today on National Watermelon Day! We think you’d really love how we’re incorporating you into a handful of delish + fun recipes, which are featured below! Hope we make you proud!

xx, the Seashells and Sit Ups Fam

Dear Readers,

WELCOME to our round up of watermelon recipes in honor of National Watermelon Day! Grab a watermelon, some ingredients from your favorite recipes below, and get cookin’!

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t h e    s & s  …s a s s y  +  s w e e t  >>> sounds familiar!

i n g r e d i e n t s :

  • 5 watermelon cubes
  • Juice of one grapefruit
  • 1.5 ounces grapefruit @deepeddyvodka 
  • 4 mint leaves, mulled 
  • Juice of 1/4 of a lime or lemon 
  • Splash (or 1/4 cup) grapefruit sparkling water 
  • 4 Ice cubes 

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d i r e c t i o n s :

  1. Add all ingredients into a shaker (excluding “bubbles”, aka sparking water)
  2. After shaking all ingredients, add a splash of bubbles
  3. Shake lightly to blend and pour into glass
  4. Serve and enjoy. Cheers!  

    perk: no added sugar and fresh, fresh, fresh

s w e e t   s u n s h i n e 

i n g r e d i e n t s :

  • 1 C frozen watermelon, cubed
  • 1 1/2 oz grapefruit @deepeddyvodka 
  • Fresh squeezed orange juice from 2 oranges
  • 1″ of a cucumber, peeled
  • 1 mint leaf

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d i r e c t i o n s :

  1. Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until smooth
  2. Garnish as desired
  3. optional, add sparking watermelon water after blending

    perk: only five ingredients and takes under 5 minutes to make

s u m m e r t i m e    b r e e z e 

i n g r e d i e n t s :

  • 2 1/2 oz Peach Deep Eddy’s Vodka
  • Juice from 2 peaches
  • Juice from 2 blood oranges
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen watermelon
  • Juice from 1 pink lemon (and wheel for garnish)
  • optional, 2 mint leaves

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d i r e c t i o n s :

  1. Add all ingredients to a high-powered blender
  2. Blend until frozen smooth consistency is reached

t h e     s e a s h e l l 

i n g r e d i e n t s :

  • 1/2 Ginger & Lime Sealand Birk
  • 10 frozen watermelon chunks
  • 6 frozen pineapple chunks
  • mint leaves or two drops of mint extract
  • 2 frozen peach slices

b o o z y   v e r s i o n >>>

  • Use above ingredients and add your favorite Rose or Prosecco (1/2-1 cup)

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d i r e c t i o n s :

  1. Add all ingredients to a high-power blender (I always use my Ninja), and mix until fully blended, like the consistency of a Slurpee
  2. Garnish if desired, serve immediately, and enjoy with a straw!




w a t e r m e l o n   s o r b e t 

i n g r e d i e n t s :

  • 1 1/2 cup frozen watermelon
  • 3 frozen pineapple chunks
  • mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1/2 pink lemon, with the rind removed or 1 pink lemon’s juice

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d i r e c t i o n s :

  1. Add all listed ingredients to a high-power blender and blend until thick but smooth consistency forms
  2. Immediately serve and enjoy!


c r i s p   a n d   c o l o r f u l   l e t t u c e   w r a p s 

i n g r e d i e n t s :

  • 3-4 butter lettuce leaves, rinsed and patted dry

  • 1 organic tomato

  • 5 chunks watermelon, sliced small
  • 1/4 organic cucumber

  • 1 avocado

  • 1 small chunk, organic red onion

  • 3-4 slices of cooked + crispy bacon

  • 1 nitrate-free turkey breast, cooked

  • 2 tablespoons of teriyaki sauce, balsamic vinegar, or citrus dressing (whichever flavor you prefer) OR fresh squeezed citrus of choice

  • Toasted sesame seeds

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d i r e c t i o n s :

  1. Marinade turkey breast in your choice of marinade (teriyaki, citrus, balsamic) and cut into small pieces
  2. Chop all veggies + watermelon into small cubes
  3. Add fruits + veggies to lettuce wraps
  4. Drizzle small amount of dressing of choice atop wraps
  5. optional, add feta or goat cheese
  6. Enjoy!


s u m m e r    f r u i t    s a l a d 

i n g r e d i e n t s :

  • 2 mint leaves
  • 5 sliced strawberries
  • 1 grapefruit
  • 1/4 cup blueberries
  • 6 chunks of watermelon
  • 1 orange
  • optional, fresh lime wedge

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d i r e c t i o n s :

  1. Rinse all fruit
  2. Mince mint leaves and set aside
  3. Slice strawberries and cube watermelon
  4. Cut grapefruit and orange into small pieces
  5. Add all fruit into a bowl
  6. Optional, squeeze fresh lime atop


C H E E R S     T O     W A T E R M E L O N    a n d   

 N A T I O N A L     W A T E R M E L O N    D A  Y  !



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Your body uses protein to build and repair tissues. You also use protein to make enzymes, hormones, and other body chemicals. Protein is an important building block of bones, muscles, cartilage, skin, and blood (WebMD, 2016).


We need to eat plenty of protein foods every single day to keep our metabolism running, our energy up and our blood sugar levels stable (Dr. Axe, 2016). With 5-hour ENERGY® Protein, you get the best of both worlds; energy PLUS protein. Boom.


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There are currently two yummy flavors available at Walmart – Berry Regular Strength and Berry Extra Strength; definitely accommodates all needs!


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This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of 5-hour ENERGY®. The opinions and text are all mine.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of 5-hour Energy. The opinions and text are all mine.

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Sunshine, Summertime, + Accessories; Women’s Watches that make Unique Gifts

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It’s 8am; if my son hasn’t woken up yet, I quietly sneak into his room, snuggle him, whisper “Morning buddy, it’s time to go to school…” and get on with our school-day routine so he has 40 minutes to eat breakfast, watch one quick show, sneak in some snugs on the couch with his mama, change for the day, get his lunch packed, and head out the door by 8:40.

Not it’s 9am, and it’s time to start my day; shower or slather on dry shampoo, get dressed, and open my computer to respond to work emails or begin consulting projects. Since I work mostly from home, I frequent local coffee shops. I chose to work there half the time so I have a reason to get dressed in something other than “mom clothes” or workout clothes.

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“JORD is run by artists, designers, marketers, and minders. We spend our days creating, considering, arguing, and hopefully agreeing. Then we’ll scrap it all for the joy of starting new. We have fun. This is our journey.” – JORD

I’m not much of a jewelry person besides a few dainty gold bar necklaces, and a watch. You’ll never find me decked-out in anything too expensive, because, hello, I’m a mom. So that’s where JORD watches come to my rescue. Not only are they SO FREAKING CUTE, they’re also made out of wood, so their casual elegance is a must for any parent. They are sustainably made and hand-crafted. Perfect for a unique gift, JORD makes men and women’s watches, for the every day person, whether they’re career-driven, a parent, a young professional, or student.

“We are focused on creating timepieces that are modeled after a modern lifestyle. We value sustainability, efficiency, and experiential living. We make our watches for people who don’t just have somewhere to be, they have somewhere to go.” -JORD


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“The value of a watch is not in being able to tell how much time has passed, but in being aware of the need to make that time count. Moments are bigger than minutes and your watch should tell more than time.” -JORD

This blog posting was sponsored by JORD, but all opinions are my own.

The Summertime Breeze, a healthy cocktail for summer nights and sweet delights


Go get the ingredients for this gem right MEOW. It’s a summer necessity (100%), especially with watermelon being easily accessible from farmer’s markets, local grocery stores, or locally grown fields. 

Meet the Summertime Breeze  >>>


serves two 

  • 2 1/2 oz Grapefruit Deep Eddy’s Vodka
  • Juice from 2 oranges 
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen watermelon 
  • Juice from 1/2 pink lemon (and wheel for garnish)
  • 2 mint leaves


  1. Add all ingredients to a high-powered blender 
  2. Blend until frozen smooth consistency is reached 

Dairy + Gluten Free + Healthy Watermelon Sorbet 


When you think of summer, you think of warm cozy nights, camping, crickets chirping, BBQs, and watermelon. So. Much. Watermelon. Which is a wonderful thing. 

My mom is the ultimate watermelon lover, and I’ve never been overly obsessed with it until this year. And I attribute that to all the beautiful local produce we have here in San Diego. 

My mom always taught me a few tricks about picking out a good one (when buying a whole one), and that was to smell the ends and knock on it to see if it sounds hallow. My friend Cassie just taught me that you also want to look for a large yellow spot aka “sun spot” because it means it should be nice and ripe. That being said, I picked out the perfect watermelon for out 4th of July BBQ, but we had SO much of it, I froze a bunch. 

Using the frozen watermelon, I made healthy watermelon sorbet and a healthy watermelon cocktail (coming soon). The sorbet is family and kiddo friendly, and just enough balance of sweet and sour – delish! And a new summer fav in our house, so hope you enjoy!

Healthy Watermelon Sorbet

use organic, non-GMO fruit when possible; recipe is dairy free and gluten free


  • 1 1/2 cup frozen watermelon 
  • 3 frozen pineapple chunks
  • 2 mint leaves
  • 1/4 cup fresh squeezed orange juice
  • 1/2 pink lemon, with the rind removed or 1 pink lemon’s juice


  1. Add all listed ingredients to a high-power blender and blend until thick but smooth consistency forms
  2. Immediately serve and enjoy!