Friday Favorites: Sweets, cooking, beauty + blog

Two full weeks in my new place have passed, and I’m still so incredibly happy to be here. We’re nearly settled in and have already sent out an evite for our housewarming party! Good times!

First of all, I’d like to wish a very happy Friday to all of you. I hope your week has been great. Do you have a three-day weekend? Even if not, it’s still a bit of a special weekend seeing as Valentine’s Day is tomorrow. Whether you’re attached or not, it’s always fun to show a little appreciation for the ones you love on this day, so I hope you get the chance to do that tomorrow.

Now it’s time to dig into a few things that have been making me extra happy this week, in true “Friday Favorites” fashion.

My favorite new healthy sweet

It’s no secret that I have a huge sweet tooth. I try to contain my dessert nights to the weekends, because when I do dessert, I like to go big. But I really have no reason to avoid this next favorite, because it’s healthy and won’t leave you in a sugar coma. Last week, the lovely folks at Arctic Zero sent me a big freezer pack of six pints of their healthy frozen treat, featuring flavors like Vanilla Maple, Salted Caramel, Cookie Shake, Toasted Coconut, Chocolate Peanut Butter and Orange Dream.

Arctic Zero via A Lady Goes WestArctic Zero calls itself a “Fit Frozen Dessert,” and yes, it certainly is.  

It’s not ice cream, but it sure seems like it. The best part? There are only 150 calories per pint and 35 calories per serving. That’s basically unheard of in the frozen dessert/ice cream world, in which other more decadent pints top out at well over 1,000 calories each.

Some other neat things to note about Arctic Zero and its quality: 

  • Fat free
  • Low glycemic index
  • Certified gluten-free
  • Lactose free
  • GMO free
  • Kosher
  • Made with high-quality whey protein and sweetened with monk fruit
  • Each pint sells for $4 to $5
  • The flavors are light, yet satisfying

I’ve tried a few of the varieties, and Chocolate Peanut Butter is my favorite so far (no surprise there!). The texture is creamy, and the taste is refreshing and mild, but sweet. You can just tell that what you’re consuming isn’t too bad for you, which is what I like most about it. 

The pints came with a handy little recipe book with ideas on ways to enjoy Arctic Zero featuring less-healthy add-ons, and I may try some of those out so I can get a little extra crunch in each bite. One thing is for sure: I look forward to digging in to the rest of the pints and will certainly be satisfying my sweet tooth with this new “fit frozen dessert” tonight. If you’re interested too, you can find out where to buy Arctic Zero by checking out this store locator.

My favorite new cooking device

From the cold to the hot. That’s right, we got a grill! Last weekend, Dave and I went to Lowe’s with one thing in mind. Dave knew which grill he wanted and after about 45 minutes, it was in the back of my car ready to go home with us. He had to put the whole thing together on Sunday, which took a surprisingly long time. Do you know how many pieces grills come in inside their huge boxes? I certainly didn’t. Nonetheless, the assembling was well worth it. We’ve had several grilled meals this week, and we both love this new addition.

Our new grillWe got this two-burner grill, which fits snuggly on our little patio. Shown here is the Char-Broil TRU Infrared Gas Grill along with the Char-Broil Grill Cover and tools. 

After living in apartments with no outdoor space for so long, a grill was high on our list. It’s great to have this new tool for cooking up quick and healthy meals, like grilled chicken and veggies, turkey burgers and steaks. Dave’s been the grill-master so far, but I just may learn to use it myself. Here’s a look at one of our first grilled meals this week …

DinnerWe ate this dinner on Wednesday night. It was the perfect recovery meal for me after teaching BODYATTACK and getting home late, complete with grilled chicken, grilled asparagus and some brown rice. I mixed this all together and enjoyed every last bite.

My favorite cleansing cheat

Changing subjects entirely, as I tend to do on Fridays, I’d like to tell you that face wipes are my jam. Now hear me out. I go to bed at a reasonable hour, freshly showered after teaching evening group fitness classes most nights of the week. However, on Saturday night, I tend to stay out and up a bit later. Whether Dave and I are hanging out with friends or are out to a dinner, no matter what, I’m always super tired when we get home. For some reason or another, I cannot possibly bring myself to wash my face with water and a towel when I’m tired on a weekend night. That’s where facial wipes come into play …

Simple facial cleansing wipesThese little lovelies, Simple Facial Wipes, are a life-saver. In fact, I bought a double-pack.

I’ve been using some form of facial wipes as my “stand-in” form of washing my face for years on later nights. And I picked up a batch of these greenies at Ulta last week and they’ve quickly become a favorite (I bought the same brand of face-wash too, but that’s not a favorite because it requires me to wash my face). These wipes have a nice mild sent and a soft texture for getting rid of all of your make-up from the day. Thank you face wipes, for helping me to clear off my done-up face before climbing into my white-sheeted bed at night.

My favorite new beverage

This one is an easy choice as a favorite. I knew cashew milk was a thing, but wasn’t able to find it in the grocery store for a few months. And it had been irking me that others were getting to try this and I wasn’t. That was until last week …

Cashew milkA look at the milk and a little taste of the new Pitt kitchen.

I was very excited to bring home a carton of Silk Cashew Milk from Safeway. The verdict? It’s got a nuttier taste than almond milk and seems to be a bit creamier. I’m definitely a big fan and could see myself buying this instead of almond milk from here on out. I’ve been drinking it plain and haven’t added it into anything yet, but I’d imagine it would bring that little bit of nuttiness to oats, cereal, smoothies, etc. The nutritional content seems to be about the same as almond milk, so it’s an even swap as far as I can tell. Totally tasty! 

My favorite new blog developments

Here on A Lady Goes West there have been a few changes lately. You may have noticed a new header. Well I also have a new email delivery service, which you can sign up to and get my new posts emailed directly to you. The great thing about these emails is that they also have a link to previous posts from the week, in case you miss them. You can unsubscribe at any time (please don’t!), and you’ll be the first to get other updates that I may send out one day outside of blog posts. Haven’t had a chance to sign up? You can sign up on the right-hand side of the blog under my picture.

Blog header

And now, in honor of Valentine’s Day and showing affection for others … I so appreciate each and every one of you who visits and supports A Lady Goes West. Thank you! And I’d love to connect with you in other places too. If you’re not already, please check me out on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest and Bloglovin’ and follow along there. It’s really fun to share my life with you guys, and as long as you keep stopping by, I’ll keep writing.

My favorite links of the week

Even though “Friday Favorites” seem to be the most fun, I’ve also shared some other great content this week. Check out the following …

That’s it, guys. Another round of “Friday Favorites” is complete.

The weekend is finally here

This morning, I’m teaching an early BODYATTACK class (that’s three this week, so I’m officially back up to my old routine, and I love it), doing some work and looking forward to a couple days of relaxing. Although we don’t really go all out for Valentine’s Day, Dave has something up his sleeve for us tomorrow, so I think we’ll be doing something festive. Hope you have a great day and weekend! Now go give someone a hug and tell them what they mean to you!

Read more Friday Favorites

If you’ve enjoyed browsing through this post, see below for previous editions or visit the the link-up hostesses, Heather, Katie and Clare

  1. A snack, a purse and a ritual
  2. A delivery, a bra and a guy
  3. A sweet, a wine and a read
  4. A drink, a gadget and a plan 
  5. A time, a bottle and a powder
  6. San Francisco edition
  7. Beauty edition
  8. Beach vacation edition
  9. Hidden meanings
  10. Kicks, a book and a bowl
  11. The very best sweatshirts
  12. Party hosting and froyo
  13. Fourth of July daytime activity
  14. Beauty basics edition
  15. Workplace edition
  16. Shopping, sales and a show
  17. The foods I always buy
  18. Sushi, a game and pants
  19. Fitness apps
  20. Delicious and healthy products
  21. Comfort, fitness and function
  22. Beauty, buddha and blog events
  23. Dining, the city and gift ideas
  24. POPSUGAR, sweets and such
  25. A bunch of fun stuff
  26. e-book, food, picnic and tunes
  27. A link, a superfood and a mask
  28. Pants, shoes, food and links
  29. Dining, protein and goodies
  30. Shopping, events and a book
  31. A gym bag, pumpkin and juices 
  32. Workout gear, a top and a massage
  33. prAna, a watch, tea and more
  34. Tasty stuff and gift sales
  35. Decor, bars, boots and a drink
  36. Flowers, music and more
  37. Coqueta, a brush and food
  38. My people and the holidays
  39. Beauty, bling and entertainment
  40. A hodge-podge of goodies
  41. Just a few special things
  42. Tasty food, drinks and moving
  43. A bunch of feel-good stuff
  44. Home, car and fitness finds

Questions of the day

Do you have any plans for Valentine’s Day? What are you up to this weekend? What’s your favorite thing from the week? Tell me something good!

Ashley signature

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    1. Hi Susie! That’s the beautiful thing about Northern California. It’s not super warm, but moderate enough to always be outside. Hope all is well with you! Happy Friday! πŸ™‚

  1. I must have missed my evite πŸ˜‰ Heheheh! And that grill, I’m so jealous! That is the first thing on Kyle’s list when we move into our new home… He actually wants an entire “outdoor kitchen” which makes sense here in Florida. Have a great weekend girly! xo

    1. Hi Becky, Grills are awesome! And we’d love to have a whole outdoor space one day, but are very happy with what we can have right now. Good thing is — if Kyle handles the grill, you can request a grill meal every night. πŸ™‚ Oh and about your invite … I sent it via snail mail! Keep checking heheh!!! πŸ™‚ Happy Friday to you too, lady!

  2. I still have yet to try the cashew milk but I have heard nothing but good things about it so I think I may need to pick it up soon. Cashews are one of my favorite nuts so I am sure it would make a delicious milk! Happy Friday Ashley!

  3. I miss our grill terribly! we have one but it’s been in storage for 3 years! My hubby swears by his charcoal grill. I don’t have the patience for the coals to heat up πŸ™‚ I have not yet tried Arctic Zero, but I’ve been dying too because I need to get rid of my sweet cravings at night! I get to take my 6 year old to his mom/son dance at school tonight….I know you are jealous πŸ™‚ He is SO excited! Have a wonderful weekend!!

    1. Ohhh Sue!! A Mom and Son dance sounds just adorable!! That’s wonderful. Hope you enjoy that. And I hope they have some sweets there for you hehehe! πŸ™‚

    1. Hi Leslie! Good news is that here in the Bay Area, we can pretty much get out there to use it most nights. Sooo excited to have it! Have a wonderful weekend!:)

  4. I’ve been using the same facial wipes for …. I don’t know, years? Now all of a sudden they cause a bad reaction to my neck/face. My neck is all rashy and sore! πŸ™ πŸ™ I’ll have to stick to the non-lazy girls route and actually use my (favourite) cleanser again lol.

    1. Oh no, Nancy! Isn’t it strange how our face, skin, body, diets, tastes change over the years? I hope you can go back to facial wipes one day. Happy Friday! Have a nice weekend:)

  5. Grilling is the best!! I am looking forward to nicer weather in MN so we can grill again. Sometimes I send Scott out into the cold when I am craving steak on the grill. πŸ˜‰ Happy Friday and thanks for linking up!!

  6. WOW, that arctic zero ice-cream looks amazing! Why oh Why can’t we get all these incredible guilt free treats in Australia!

    Unfortunately I am spending my first V day by myself, with my husband still out at work (he works on a gas mine). Luckily I still have my little man to share the love with! Hope you had a wonderful day too! xx

    1. Hi Krissy!! Well I hope your little man is a good Valentine to you! Hope you have a lovely weekend. And maybe Arctic Zero will come your way soon??

    1. Hi Kaylin, Great minds think alike!! I JUST tried Salted Caramel last night, and it might be my new favorite. Happy weekend to you, lady! πŸ™‚

  7. My first visit to your blog, and so far I LOVE it!!! Lots of great links, great recommendations, and a bubbly attitude to match πŸ™‚ Cant wait to read more on your journey! By the way, that cashew milk, LOVVVVEE it!!! I thought it was SO good!

    1. Hi Tina, Well a big ol’ welcome to you here on A Lady Goes West. I’m so glad you stopped by, and I look forward to sharing more with you. Yes oh yes, I’m loving the cashew milk — and my husband likes it too, which makes me know it’s not some strange healthy-person-food. You know? Hope you’re having a fabulous Valentine’s Day! Big run today?? πŸ™‚

  8. Our twin plates are back at it again – LOL! I love that we are plate soul mates – ha ha ah!
    And I wish I could eat Arctic Zero, but alas, I cannot- thankfully Wink Frozen Desserts fills the void VERY nicely πŸ˜‰

  9. I’ve never tried Arctic Zero but the flavours sound fab! I had a look at the ingredient list and I gotta say- I’m pretty impressed! Am hoping cashew milk makes it to Mumbai soon- I’m a big almond milk fan but it sounds like it would be a great alternative!

    1. Hi K! Well your seal of approval means a lot for Arctic Zero!! And yes, cashew milk is very creamy and delicious, so I hope you get it soon. Have a wonderful day! πŸ™‚

  10. I love Arctic Zero’s new packaging. Even more, I’m excited about your grill and have already started thinking about summer. I have a grill and hardly use it…

    1. Hi Julie! We are using our grill as much as possible! It’s soooo nice to have outdoor space and the ability to cook food outside (which we didn’t have a few weeks ago when living in a little city apartment). Hope you had a nice weekend! πŸ™‚

  11. Loving the new header and definitely need to get myself some cashew milk. On my Valentine’s Day… I canceled a trip to L.A. to be around for my cousin’s boyfriend proposing to her… great decision, and an amazingly festive way to spend Valentine’s Day!

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