• Quick and Easy Meal Prep Ideas for One Week

    Mar 18, 2019

    Meal prepping is a great way to save time on cooking and commit to eating healthier. To help you get started, Timbercreek Communities has some delicious and easy meal prep ideas for one week.

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    DIY Starbucks Protein Bistro Box

    Instead of spending too much money on food from Starbucks, make copycat versions of your favourite Starbucks meals yourself at home. This Protein Bistro Box is super easy to make and it’s great for breakfast or lunch. Start by boiling 8 eggs and washing 2 cups of apples and grapes. Slice the apples and brush them with lemon juice to prevent browning. When the eggs are finished boiling, cut them into pieces and sprinkle some salt and pepper on them. Organize all your ingredients (4 reduced-fat Mini Babybel cheeses, Honey-Roasted Peanut Butter and 2 multigrain flatbread sandwich thins cut into quarters) into 4 Meal Prep Containers and refrigerate. There’s no need to heat it up, so it’s perfect to take with you to school or work, or to eat on the go.

    Breakfast Egg McMuffins

    With this amazing breakfast recipe, you’ll never have to wait in a drive-through line again. To make the Egg Mcmuffins, you’ll need 6 eggs, half a cup of chopped spinach, one third of a cup of crumbled cooked bacon, one third of a cup of shredded cheddar cheese, a little cooking spray and salt and pepper. Begin by setting the oven to 375F. Spray the muffin trays with cooking spray. Crack the eggs into a blender and blend until smooth. Add the spinach, bacon and cheese to the mixture and divide it evenly between the muffin cups. Bake the egg McMuffins for 15 to 18 minutes and serve immediately. This protein-packed meal is full of flavour and ideal for busy mornings.

    Pad Thai

    If you love Pad Thai, but want to make it healthier, this is the perfect recipe for you. This Spiralized Chicken Pad Thai dish is low-carb, noodle-free and super easy to make. Start with the sauce. You’ll need one quarter cup of tamarind paste, 1 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce or tamari, 1 tbsp peanut butter, 2 cloves garlic minced, 2 tsp fish sauce and 2 tsp lime juice. Whisk all the ingredients in a bowl and set aside. For the meal, you will need need 4 chicken breasts, 4 spiralized zucchinis, 1 small yellow onion, 1 pack of carrot matchsticks, ½ red cabbage, 2-3 scallions, one quarter cup chopped peanuts, coconut or olive oil and one third of a cup of finely chopped cilantro. In a large pan, heat the oil and add the onions. Cook them for a few minutes and add the chicken with three quarters of the pad thai sauce. Keep stirring for 8 to 10 minutes, until the chicken is cooked. Next, you’ll want to remove the pan from the heat, add the zucchini noodles and stir in the remainder of the sauce. Sautee for 30 seconds, then move the noodles to a meal prep container. Top it all off with chicken, cabbage and carrots and garnish with scallions, peanuts and cilantro.

    Baked Lime Chicken Bowls

    Stay on track with this delicious Baked Lime Chicken Bowl. It’s super healthy and tastes amazing. This meal makes a great lunch or dinner dish. Before you start cooking, you’ll want to cut the chicken into cubes and marinate it in a chilli lime sauce. In a large bag, combine vinegar, olive oil, salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika and lime juice. Add the chicken and marinate anywhere from 2 hours to overnight. When you’re ready to cook, heat the oven to 400F,  arrange the chicken on a baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Enjoy!

    Honey BBQ Salmon Bowls

    Healthy food doesn’t have to be boring. This Honey BBQ Salmon Bowl is a perfect example of a healthy meal that is full of flavour and ready in 30 minutes. Not only is it protein packed, but it’s gluten free and dairy free as well. Begin by heating the oven to 400F and lining a tray with a baking sheet and oil. In a separate bowl, combine the BBQ sauce, 1/2 to 1 tbsp honey, 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar, 1/4 tsp black pepper, 2 cloves of garlic and salt. Spread the sauce over the salmon and bake for 10-12 minutes. You’ll want to broil for 1-2 minutes -- until the BBQ sauce browns at the edge of the salmon. Be sure to keep an eye on it so it doesn’t overcook! Next, you’ll want to cook 1 cup of quinoa in 2 cups of water. When that’s ready and fluffy, set it aside. Cut the zucchini into thin strips, or use a spiralizer, and start preparing each bowl. To do so, start by adding one third of a cup of quinoa, 3 ounces of salmon, 3-4 pieces of avocado, 1 cup of zoodles, red pepper, BBQ sauce, a handful of cilantro, a splash of lemon and 1 to 2 tbsps of pumpkin seeds. Voila! You have 3 to 4 prepared bowls to enjoy for lunch and dinner!

    Timbercreek hopes you enjoyed these 5 easy meal prep ideas. To find your home with Timbercreek Communities, please visit our website.

  • Apps that make meditation easier

    Nov 06, 2018

    Meditation has been shown to have real scientific benefits. It can help you sleep better and even become a kinder person. Sounds great, right? But then you sit down, close your eyes and you’re lost. How do you even know if you’re doing it ‘right’? Timbercreek Communities wants to help you calm your mind and focus on the present with these apps that make meditation easier.

    Woman doing yoga at home

    The Mindfulness App

    To help keep you on track, The Mindfulness App includes a five-day guided meditation practice, as well as reminders to relax, and other features based on your individual meditation habits. This free trial app offers more features with a premium subscription. It's available for iPhone and Android.

    Headspace

    If you are brand new to meditation, Headspace can help you work it into your routine and guide you along the path. The free trial offers 10 exercises to help newbies learn the ropes and how to incorporate it into your life. There’s even a reward system for continued practice. The interface is light-hearted and accessible. Additional features are available with a premium subscription for iPhone or Android.

    Calm

    Calm offers guided meditations ranging from 3 to 25 minutes sessions, including one called Daily Calm. This 10-minute practice can be worked into the beginning or end of your day to get you into the habit. The free app includes breathing exercises, sleep stories, and soothing sounds to help you relax and sleep. A premium subscription is available for iPhone and Android.

    Insight Timer

    You can check out thousands of free guided meditations, and hundreds of meditation music tracks, with Insight Timer. The app is free, but to listen offline you’ll need a subscription. It's available for iPhone or Android devices.

    Smiling Mind

    Smiling mind can be custom tailored to different age groups, including kids as young as 7. Every member of the family can create their own account. It's available for iPhone or Android.

    Timbercreek Communities hopes this post helps you experience all the benefits of meditation, easily.

    To find your home with Timbercreek Communities, please visit our website.

  • Movember Contest - Grow Your Mo!

    Oct 29, 2018

    The Movember Foundation

    The Movember Foundation has one simple, yet profound mission. To stop men from dying before their time.

    Men are facing a health crisis that it isn’t being talked about nearly enough. The mustache serves as the foundation’s ribbon. It’s meant to start conversations, raise money, and ultimately, save lives. The Movember Foundation is the leading charity dedicated to tackling the biggest health issues that men face:

    Prostate Cancer

    Prostate cancer kills an average of 45 men every hour.  It’s one of the most common forms of cancer in men and rates are on the rise. It’s estimated that by 2030 there will be 1.7 million men living with prostate cancer. Presently this disease takes the lives of hundreds of thousands of men each year, and survivors often live with serious side effects from treatment.

    Testicular Cancer

    Testicular cancer can feel particularly tragic as it often strikes young. Most cases are men between 15 and 40 years old. There is a 95% survival rate, but that still leaves 1 in 20 that won’t live through it.

    Mental Health

    All over the world, suicide rates are alarmingly high, yet there is still a stigma attached to talking about Mental Health. Three quarters of all suicides are men. That’s an average of one man a minute lost. That's every minute of every day. Far too many men are struggling in silence and isolation.

    The Movember Foundation aims to reduce the number of men dying prematurely by at least 25% by 2030.

    The Foundation does not take government funding, freeing it to challenge the status quo and invest time and money where it will work most effectively for men. In 15 years they have funded over 1,200 men’s health projects across the globe.

    You can join the Movember movement. Register to grow your mo, or donate directly, today.

  • Thanksgiving: Easy Ways to Become More Grateful

    Oct 02, 2018

    Thanksgiving is the official holiday of gratitude, by why should feeling grateful need a holiday? Science has proven gratitude is good for you. Timbercreek Communities wants to share a few ways to cultivate gratitude on an ongoing basis. Here are some easy ways to become more grateful, every day.

    Family around dinner table

    Keep a Gratitude Journal

    It helps to get our thoughts down on paper. Get into the habit of reminding yourself of all the good things in your life, big and small. Sometimes it’s the little things that we feel most grateful for. Write these things down every day. It could be something beautiful you saw, a personal attribute you have, a feeling, or the simple fact that you are alive and can feel anything at all.

    Visual Reminders

    The biggest obstacle to gratefulness is forgetfulness. It’s easy to forget what is good in our lives, especially when we are overwhelmed and stressed. Use visual reminders to trigger your gratitude. Seeing the people in your life that you are grateful for and love is a great place to start.

    Behave Gratefully

    Behaving as though you are already grateful can trigger feelings of genuine gratitude. These behaviors can include the simplest things, like saying thank you, smiling, or writing letters expressing your gratitude.

    Stick With It

    Consistency is the key. Keep reminding yourself of the good things in life. Posting sticky notes around your home about what you’re grateful for can help. You can modernize this tip by posting gratitude reminders on your phone for random times in the near future.

    Show the love

    Feeling gratitude is great, but the other side of it is expressing gratitude towards others. The thought may make you feel vulnerable, but chances are the other person would be grateful to hear it -- this can create a gratitude feedback loop that feels great!

    Timbercreek is grateful that you’ve found your home with us.

    For information on finding a new home with Timbercreek Communities across Canada, please visit our website.

  • Small Movements that can Improve your Mood

    Sep 17, 2018

    Controlling your emotions is no easy task. When you need to feel better fast, acting like you feel better can actually trick your mind into feeling better. Timbercreek Communities wants to share several small movements that can improve your mood.

    Mother & daughter hugging

    Smile

    Even forcing a fake smile can make you feel happier. When the muscles used for smiling are engaged, you’re more likely to find something funny. Learn more about the facial feedback hypothesis.

    Got a Pen?

    When you can’t muster even a fake smile, try putting a pen between your front teeth. Even forcing your face into a semblance of a smile can provide some stress relief.

    Go to Your Happy Place

    Move your mind to find relief. By calling up cherished memories in your mind, you can improve our inner sense of joy and well being. When we’re stressed, it’s harder to recall these memories. Try to recall an object, or details about the location where the memory took place. This technique is called the "method-of-loci" strategy. 

    Breathe

    Pay attention to your breathing. A proper inhale and exhale should cause your abdomen to expand and contract. Your chest and shoulders should remain relatively still.

    Posture

    Proper posture can enhance your mood, boost confidence, and make relaxed breathing feel more natural. Sit or stand straight and relax your shoulders.

    Embrace Yourself and Move Toward Your Goal

    The simple act of hugging yourself can reduce physical and emotional pain. Now, literally take a step forward. Put on your shoes to go to the gym. Step toward the door to tidy up your room. End the procrastination to improve your mood. Our brains can follow the lead of our bodies.

    Timbercreek hopes these small but powerful movements help you pick yourself up when the chips are down. We all need some help from time to time. To find your home with Timbercreek Communities, please visit our website.

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