Friday, August 21, 2015

End of Summer Tropical Parfait and Kitchen Hack Tool

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The end of summer is really here. Instead of dwelling on the fact that I want to be able to sleep in every morning I am celebrating the end of summer with a Tropical Parfait. My kids loved it so I bet your kids will to!



These last two weeks of summer have been full of bar-be-ques, water adventure and cool treats! Oh, and back to school shopping, hence the reason I haven't posted anything new in a span of  2 weeks. Well, at least I've been documenting our favorite kitchen creations and will have several new things to share in the coming days because.... insert audible drum roll.... the kids are back in school! They were just as ready as I was so I don't feel any guilt with the parting of ways. There are so many ideas I've had percolating this summer but I haven't had the time to focus on developing them, so now I'm putting the pedal to the metal and you'll want to stay in touch by subscribing to the RSS feed and steal borrow any ideas that suit you. But, believe me, you'll want in on some of the special projects around the corner!

Not too long ago we developed our favorite smoothie to date and the kids would ask for it again and again. Which I love because they used to grimace at the smoothies I would make for them. That's because I didn't have a plan for what I put in the smoothies. I would just grab what we had on hand and throw a little of this and a little of that, add some green stuff and make sure there was some liquid and press the magic button hoping it would magically turn my smoothies into blended genius. Sadly, more often than not the kids turned their noses up at them. But, not anymore! This summer we changed all that. Now I follow a formula and it has made all the difference. If you missed it, you need to go back and pin it so you can escape to an imaginary tropical place any time you want. In fact it is this Tropical Surprise Smoothie that inspired today's treat, the End of Summer Tropical Parfait.

Ingredients:
1 cup yogurt (we love Stonyfield, vanilla)
1/2 cup almond slices
1 mango, diced
1 cup fresh pineapple chunks, about 1/2 pineapple
1/2 cup shredded coconut





Instructions:

1. Combine coconut with yogurt and stir. OR you can combine the coconut with the almonds. I've tried it both ways and it's great either way.

2. Prepare your Pineapple. After getting this pineapple coring tool we have saved so much money versus buying the pre cut stuff at the market. Watch this video and tell me you don't want to buy this corer right now!




 



3. Prepare your diced mango. This is one of those kitchen hacks I was so glad to learn. Because, again, I don't have to pay an arm and a leg buying the pre cut and packaged mango. The kids and I are kind of mango fanatics so this video was big time awesome:


I kind of like to dice the mango by scoring one cheek then the other and then using the glass to separate the "diced" fruit from the skin.




I thought about getting the mango slicer but decided after see this a couple of videos that it wasn't really necessary.


Now you'll have each of your ingredients set and ready to go.


4. Now it is time to build your parfait! Layer a couple spoonfuls of yogurt at the bottom, Next add a spoonful or two of sliced almonds. Then one heaping spoonful each of the pineapple and mango. Repeat these steps once more then enjoy!

Yields 4 small parfaits. 


All summer long I have been hemming and hawing about getting a set of parfait glasses because I want to be earth friendly and not use the plastic disposable ones. And wouldn't you know the day I'm writing this post my order from Amazon Prime arrives? So I'll have to make another parfait pronto and update with another picture!

These were the two that I had a hard time deciding between....





Which one do you like best? I'd love to hear in the comments below if you plan to make this parfait for your kids! Remember you can pin it and savor a little bit of summer any time of the year.

My kids love parfaits for after school healthy snack. Here are some other combinations you may want to try (just click on the image):



                 

Monday, August 17, 2015

Bloggers Brags Weekly Pinterest Party - Week 92

This week I haven't posted anything new, just soaking up the rest of summer before my kids head back to school this week. We have had a backyard slip n slide play date, friends over for a bbq, a beach day with more grilling and s'mores and lots of laughing and a fundraiser movie night at our local playground.  We even took advantage of Kids Bowl Free at our favorite bowling spot, which I totally need to write up a post about. Oh and we beat the heat this weekend by going to the mall and doing some back to school shopping. My daughter wants me to share her new favorite outfits, so I'll try to do that this week. I hope your summer is wrapping up nicely! Share your awesome posts here on this week's linky party and browse what others have been crafting, cooking or DIYing. Remember, everything gets pinned!


Welcome to the

Bloggers Brags logo
The hosts and co-hosts are trying to remember to tweet, share on Facebook, and share on Google+ using the hashtag #bloggersbrags. We'll try to like, +1, or favorite your posts too! We would love it if you shared a tweet:
 

Here are this week's 

Featured Posts from the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party Featured posts from week 92

Here is my favorite post from last week's party:



This awesome crocheted owl pencil bag is from 5 Little Monsters and I love the colors and my daughter loves that it is an owl. If your child is more into monsters, she has another DIY tutorial here. And if your kids are older and don't want a fun whimsical character, this simple design is for you.
As your kids get ready to head back to school it is nice to have something handmade and personalized holding their supplies. Let me know if you give one of these a try!

 
    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Rules of the Bloggers Brags Weekly Pinterest Party 

 LET'S GET OUR PARTY ON!  
  • Be a follower of your hosts on at least one of their social media
Pinterest Party Hosts Are...hosts of Bloggers Brags
{Misty from  Denverista @ Facebook or Twitter or Pinterest or Google+}       
{Tammy from Creative K Kids @ Facebook or Twitter or Pinterest or Google+}

Please follow our co-hosts on at least one of their social media accounts.  They will be pinning and commenting on 35 posts a week for both July and August.

Cohosts for the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party for July and August 2015
  • Pin our Pinterest party button or a visible link onto your sidebar, post, or party page. This will help others to find our party and will bring more visibility to your links! 
Creative K Kids
  • Please make sure that you link directly to your post’s URL and not to your blog’s URL. 
  • Pin the two links before yours! If EVERYONE pins, then everyone will get more Pinterest love.    
  • Link up a maximum of 3 links. They can be old or new–they’re all new to us, and we want to see them!  Please link up posts only one time to the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party.
  • All posts must be family-friendly.  If you link up an post that contains alcohol, it may not get pinned if it goes against the hosts/co-host's beliefs.
  • OPTIONAL: Follow our Bloggers Brags Board on Pinterest. You don’t have to do this; but of course, you’ll want to! We will be pinning all of these links to that board which will also gain more exposure for you! You can find the Bloggers Brags board here. 
          Here are just a few more details! 
  • If your post is featured, you can grab this button!
Creative K Kids
  • Disclosure: By linking up and including a picture, you agree to Creative K Kids and Denverista and any co-hosts to use your pictures and links in any future posts on any of their personal blogs. Your photo may also be used for promotion on all social media outlets of Creative K Kids and Denverista as well as any future co-hosts.  We also may link your printables and other resources up to our permanent linkys to gain you more exposure. 
  • If you include your e-mail in the linky form below you will be added to a weekly reminder e-mail when the link party goes live. Your e-mail will not to added to any other lists or given out.  
  • If you would ever want to co-host this party, please contact Misty or Tammy.  You would have to pin 35 posts from this party a week and comment on those 35 posts.  You also would schedule this party on your blog every Monday for 7 am CST.  We would give you the script every week, and you would just add a featured post from the week before.  We ask that people follow you on at least one social media.  It is a two month commitment.  We are currently looking for one more co-host for September and October.  You can email Tammy at creativekkids@creativekkids(dot)com if you are interested.  Thank you!
  • Please do not add any shops, reviews, giveaways or link-up parties.  Links that do not comply may be removed and will not be pinned or commented on.

Monday, August 10, 2015

Bloggers Brags Weekly Pinterest Party - Week 91

August is bringing me a lot to think about, back to school, planning a few more summer worthy outings with the kids, getting back to a regular routine and how quickly summer always seems to pass even if there are moments I can't wait for that first day of school....

We've done a majority of our back to school shopping like clothes and shoes and basic school supplies and even lunch boxes. Of course the kids want to wear all their new clothes right now and I am like "absolutely not!" Today we will pick up the new glasses that we ordered for Amberly. If you have a little one that wears glasses you'll want to be sure to see the crazy low price for back to school that JCPenney offers right now:


And of course you'll want to make sure the kids are looking sharp with new hair cuts, so take advantage of the online check in at Great Clips so you can spend more time savoring summer:



Today happens to be one of our favorite days of summer.... National S'mores Day! We will be celebrating with traditional s'mores tonight in our backyard with friends but we enjoyed s'mores brownies yesterday when we went to a slip n slide party! There are many ways to enjoy s'mores and we hope to keep working on this list since summer really isn't over until Labor Day, right?



What are you doing to savor the final days of summer? Share your brags here in this week's linky and give others some inspiration!


Welcome to the

Bloggers Brags logo 
The hosts and co-hosts are trying to remember to tweet, share on Facebook, and share on Google+ using the hashtag #bloggersbrags. We'll try to like, +1, or favorite your posts too! We would love it if you shared a tweet:
 

Here are this week's 

Featured Posts from the Bloggers Brags Pinterest PartyFeatured posts from Bloggers Brags Party week 90

My favorite post from last week's party:


My boys may not be the right age anymore for a Roaring Dinosaur party but I just love love love the creative touches that were featured at Smart Party Planning! Be sure to visit her page and pin this idea for your little ones (hint: both boys and girls in the preschool age group love dinos!)




    * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * Rules of the Bloggers Brags Weekly Pinterest Party  

LET'S GET OUR PARTY ON!  
  • Be a follower of your hosts on at least one of their social media
Pinterest Party Hosts Are...hosts of Bloggers Brags
{Misty from  Denverista @ Facebook or Twitter or Pinterest or Google+}       
{Tammy from Creative K Kids @ Facebook or Twitter or Pinterest or Google+}

Please follow our co-hosts on at least one of their social media accounts.  They will be pinning and commenting on 35 posts a week for both July and August.

Cohosts for the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party for July and August 2015
  • Pin our Pinterest party button or a visible link onto your sidebar, post, or party page. This will help others to find our party and will bring more visibility to your links! 
Creative K Kids
  • Please make sure that you link directly to your post’s URL and not to your blog’s URL. 
  • Pin the two links before yours! If EVERYONE pins, then everyone will get more Pinterest love.    
  • Link up a maximum of 3 links. They can be old or new–they’re all new to us, and we want to see them!  Please link up posts only one time to the Bloggers Brags Pinterest Party.
  • All posts must be family-friendly.  If you link up an post that contains alcohol, it may not get pinned if it goes against the hosts/co-host's beliefs.
  • OPTIONAL: Follow our Bloggers Brags Board on Pinterest. You don’t have to do this; but of course, you’ll want to! We will be pinning all of these links to that board which will also gain more exposure for you! You can find the Bloggers Brags board here. 
          Here are just a few more details! 
  • If your post is featured, you can grab this button!
Creative K Kids
  • Disclosure: By linking up and including a picture, you agree to Creative K Kids and Denverista and any co-hosts to use your pictures and links in any future posts on any of their personal blogs. Your photo may also be used for promotion on all social media outlets of Creative K Kids and Denverista as well as any future co-hosts.  We also may link your printables and other resources up to our permanent linkys to gain you more exposure. 
  • If you include your e-mail in the linky form below you will be added to a weekly reminder e-mail when the link party goes live. Your e-mail will not to added to any other lists or given out.  
  • If you would ever want to co-host this party, please contact Misty or Tammy.  You would have to pin 35 posts from this party a week and comment on those 35 posts.  You also would schedule this party on your blog every Monday for 7 am CST.  We would give you the script every week, and you would just add a featured post from the week before.  We ask that people follow you on at least one social media.  It is a two month commitment.  We are currently looking for more co-hosts for September and October.  You can email Tammy at creativekkids@creativekkids(dot)com if you are interested.  Thank you!
  • Please do not add any shops, reviews, giveaways or link-up parties.  Links that do not comply may be removed and will not be pinned or commented on.

Sunday, August 9, 2015

My Challenge to KIND Snacks

With all the social media noise there is out there it can be difficult for those who are trying to make a difference in the lives of others in a big and meaningful way to really be heard. That's why when I come across something smart that I know more people need to see I will gladly chime in and retweet to lend support. I've known too many people diagnosed with cancer and know that we not only need to fight cancer but need to be  Out Living It which is the motto of First Descents, an organization that provides life changing outdoor adventures for young adults impacted by cancer.



I first saw this campaign via my good friends on twitter @LittleMeTea where they retweeted an image from KIND Snacks:



I loved the idea of KIND Snacks supporting what this organization is all about but honestly I scoffed at the tiny (for a big booming brand) dollar amount so I challenged them to up the ante. Which they kindly accepted.



I got so excited at the idea of them accepting my challenge that it made me more curious about the campaign so I scrolled through the KIND twitter feed and Facebook page to find they are providing lots of opportunities to have fans help them not just donate money to First Descents, but raise awareness at the same time with their hashtag #OutLivingIt. And the partnership between these two organizations is just beginning as I learned via the KIND blog. When a company that is doing well can help the community at large I can't help but to be really moved by the KINDness that is ever present in humanity.

And the thing is, there's a lot of businesses out there that have more than a goal to be profitable, they want their community members to thrive. These are the kind of businesses that I love to support. They are the ones out there helping non-profits get seen and seeing the big picture of their own success... being able to help others.

I think in the heart of any entrepreneur there is a sense of wanting to do things better, and not just the product or service we sell (yes, I said we because I'm an entrepreneur www.sign4baby.com)... but we want to help someone improve their experience of life.

Here's my call to action, it's super simple. Go and FAVORITE this tweet on twitter. It would be great if you also retweet it to get more eyeballs on it. The goal is to get 1,000 people to favorite that tweet so KIND Snacks will donate $1,000 to First Descents. Together we can use the power of social media to do social good!

Friday, August 7, 2015

21 Summer Drinks Just for Moms

Summer is a time when kids get to take a break from the rigors of classroom learning, relax with less constraining schedules and enjoy more family time.

Well, all that family time can be a little bit exhausting at times for mom.... maybe it's just me. Three kids that like to have things their way means we have some sibling rivalry on a daily, nope scratch that, hourly basis. The overseeing of sharing, taking turns, deciding when to step in and when to let them work things out on their own is.... well grating on my nerves at times. Not to mention I'm juggling work, keeping the house somewhat maintained and trying to plan fun things for them to do with all their "free time" Oh, wait! That's not just me, that's you too! Well, then let me pour you a drink. There's a bunch of funny memes out there about moms and wine, but with summer here, I may be reaching for something that has a little more, shall we say beach feel to it. Yes, you've got it. Drinks worthy of those cute little drink umbrellas.

OH and if you don't have time to peruse these perfect summer drinks right now - be sure to PIN IT so you can indulge later!





Here are my top picks for winding down this summer:



Spiked Strawberry Lemonade via Julie's Eats and Treats




Lime in Da Coconut via Made with Happy




Key Lime Moscato Punch via Krystal's Kitsch



Chocolate Raspberry Vodka Tonic via Giraffes Can Bake




Pineapple Saketini via Lipgloss and Crayons




Tropical Twisters via A Helicopter Mom




Boozy Smoothies via Simmworks Family Blog




Sparkling Citrus Sangria via Dizzy Busy and Hungry




Strawberry Margarita Punch via The Cookie Rookie




Berry Mint Gin Cocktail via In Mama Maggie's Kitchen




Strawberry Line Moscato Punch via Real Housemoms




Blueberry Breeze Cooler via Ann's Entitled Life




Skinny Margarita via Simmworks Family Blog




Lightened Up Raspberry Coconut Punch via Averie Cooks




Spicy White Wine Sangria via The Mommy Project San Diego




Raspberry Lemon Drop Martinis via The Cookie Rookie 


Vanilla Mojito via Lipgloss and Crayons



Malibu Sunset via Averie Cooks



http://www.spoonfulofflavor.com/2015/07/08/pineapple-peach-mojito/

Pineapple Peach Mojito via Spoonful of Flavor




Blueberry Bourbon Smash via Lexi Bites




Simple Summer Blueberry Margarita via Mommy's Slice of the Pie




Spicy Pineapple Mint Julep via Just Putzing Around the Kitchen




Raspberry Peach Prosecco Punch via Table for Two




And you never can go wrong just opening a bottle of wine, right? That's what I do more often than not. I love reading my friend Maggie's reviews of wine and especially love her collection of wine memes -


See more her collection of witty wine one liners - save for when you need to perk up your mom BFF.