September 30, 2013

Step2 Lil' Chef's Gourmet Kitchen - The Perfect Play Kitchen

As you know, I am a Step2 Test Drive Blogger. I was sent this Step2 Li'l Chef's Gourmet Kitchen (which is a great play kitchen) to review and share my thoughts with you.  No other compensation was provided.

There are so many reasons to have a toy kitchen in your home whether you have a little girl or a little boy.  Imaginary play is not only so important to child development, it's also fun to watch!  In all honesty, I've noticed that our visiting male friends tend to gravitate toward our play kitchen even more than the girls.  I love that the Step2 Lil Chef's Gourment Kitchen is full of features I oohed and aahed about as a parent but doesn't come off as girly...unless you get the pink version.  But then clearly girly is what you're going for!

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September 27, 2013

Get Salon Style Hair with the Conair Infiniti Pro Flat Iron

Want to know how to use the Conair Infiniti Pro flat iron to get straight hair with curled ends?  I received this flat iron at a conference but am under no obligation to share it with you and am certainly not being compensated for this post.  I just want you to look awesome!

So I don't have tons of beauty secrets BUT I will say I have mastered the art of the salon looking blowout using just a flat iron at home.  You know when you see someone's hair and you can just tell they've flat ironed it...and not in a good way?   It's stick straight, looks unnatural and lacks movement.  I know because I had that hair way way back in the day before learning the technique I'm going to show you using the Conair Infiniti Pro flat iron


September 25, 2013

No, you should NOT do Tough Mudder - an open letter to my husband

If you ever wanted a real peek into my marriage, well then here it is.  Fortunately I married an awesome (albeit fragile) guy who can dish it out and take it.  And yes, I know I'm sleeping on the couch tonight.

Dear Husband,

Lately your upcoming participation in Tough Mudder San Diego has been a hot topic in our home.  Personally, I find it adorable that you think this is a good idea.  Professionally, I can only begin to ponder the precious photos I could collect if I attend and capture your "Arctic Enema" moment.


September 23, 2013

Easy DIY Paper Garlands + an Art Tool Donation

This week I created some easy DIY paper garlands that are perfect inexpensive party decor and created a Fiskars Shape Their Future Donation as part of a sponsored post for Collective Bias®

Have you ever seen something decorative and said "I bet I can make that!" I've been having that experience a lot lately and it feels pretty darn awesome when the end result is not a Pinterest fail.  And if it is well, no one has to know!

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I found myself browsing the web for some decorative garlands to brighten up the walls in my office and Kayla's new bedroom.  What I hadn't realized is how expensive they can be.   A lot of the ones I saw and liked ran between $12 and $25 a strand.  Which is kind of a lot...for paper and string.  So when I found this craft on the Fiskars site I thought it seemed simple enough to do a version that didn't require buying tons of supplies and wouldn't make me insane.

Tagg Pet Tracker - Peace of Mind for Pet Owners

This post is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™ and Tagg™ Pet Tracker, but all my opinions are my own. #pmedia #pettracker  http://cmp.ly/3/8vNxcO

Charger is a rescue dog who was given a very lucky second chance after being found starving on the streets in San Bernadino by an incredibly good natured fire fighter on Christmas Eve.  His family nursed Charger back to health, and tried to find his owners since he showed no signs of abuse and was as friendly as they come.  It seemed pretty plausible that he just ventured too far from home and never found his way back.  Alternatively, as some form of pitbull anything was possible to explain why he was roaming the streets.  But they knew taking him to a shelter was not an option as he'd get a week at most before being put to sleep.

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September 20, 2013

The Little Mermaid Craft Party + DIY Mermaid Leggings

We had a DIY The Little Mermaid craft party inspired by Kayla's favorite Disney Princess, Ariel.  We made so many great things as part of a sponsored post for Collective Bias®

It's the most wonderful time of the year.  Okay, I'm being sarcastic.  It's totally not.   If your house is anything like mine then this is the time of year when you become a widow to fantasy football.  This weekend, rather than letting the constant shouting of "go, go, go, go, go" and "TOUCHDOWN" drive me bonkers I decided to focus that energy towards finding something really fun to do with Kayla and that's precisely how we wound up having a Little Mermaid craft party.

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September 19, 2013

DIY Mermaid Leggings No Sew Tutorial - Perfect for a costume or dress up

This week I got creative and decided to make these DIY Mermaid Leggings for our Little Mermaid craft party. They are a perfect Halloween costume or dress up outfit.  I love that unlike most mermaid dresses they give your child full flexibility to run, jump and be a kid without the constant worry of tripping, falling and underwear flashing which can be traumatic for mermaids over age 5.  

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September 18, 2013

Join the #Fall4Beef Twitter Party - Amazing Fall Recipes Coming Your Way!

There is no denying that fall is on the way!  With the first hints of chilly mornings comfort food and more hearty meals are very much on my mind.  So I'm excited to say that I'll be hosting the #Fall4Beef twitter party with my friends Janet and Melissa on Thursday 9/26 at 1pm EST.  Join us for some great recipes like this Cheesesteak and Ale soup from my friend Nena over at Eat.Bake.Blog and of course lots of excellent prizes.  Who doesn't like prizes?


We'll be collaborating with the American National CattleWomen to bring you this party sponsored by the Beef Checkoff.  Trust me when I say you will be inspired to get cooking for football season, family dinners and holiday meals.

The New Beats Studio Headphones - Finding Stylish Sanity. Finally.

I checked out the new  Beats by Dre Beats Studio headphones from Best Buy recently and am sharing my thoughts on them as a blogger and a mom as part of a sponsored post for  Collective Bias®

I'll never forget when the holidays rolled around during the first year Craig and I were dating.  There is no gift giving pressure quite like that very first gift for someone you are in a relationship with.  I mean, except for engagement ring pressure...but that's a story for an entirely different day.


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September 13, 2013

Luv Chicken - A Portable Booster Cushion for Preschoolers

Sanitary booster seats for preschoolers - do they exist?  Not in most restaurants or movie theaters if you ask me.  I don't know which is worse, watching Kayla struggle to reach the table and eat comfortably or shuddering from the always slightly sticky (why???) and probably pink eye riddled public booster seats.  Actually I do.  It's the booster seat.  

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September 10, 2013

Easy Beef Stew Pot Pie Recipe- A Super Easy Meal for Fall

This week I made the best easy beef stew pot pies with Kraft Recipe Makers New England Pot Roast as part of a sponsored post for Collective Bias®

With the arrival of fall and thoughts of the holidays on the way and most of my family far away I found myself getting my annual itch of nostalgic cooking.  Ask any member of my parent's family what dish they look forward to all year and you'll get one of two answers.  Neither of them involves a turkey.  My  father will almost certainly say pot roast.  My sisters will without question say beef stew.  If you ask me they're pretty much the same when prepared using my mother's heirloom recipe.

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September 8, 2013

Easy Fun and Healthy Kids Breakfast Ideas for Cool Moms. Yes, I Mean You.

This week I came up with some easy and fun healthy breakfast ideas for kids as part of a sponsored post for Collective Bias® Check out my clever findings!

The back to school season is tough.  There are bedtimes to be adjusted, new teachers and friends, and let's not even talk about the morning rush.  Or actually, let's do just that.  Monday through Friday my goal is to get Kayla washed, dressed, fed and off to school as quickly as possible so that I can get working.  I'm willing to bet I'm not the only one?  Lately I've had to remind her to finish up her breakfast oh about 12 times before she actually eats it.  All of this nagging and repetition makes me feel like the mother I never wanted to be.  So this week I got a little creative.  

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September 5, 2013

Get yourself a Dammit Doll. You know you need one.

I'm not going to pretend the Dammit Doll is brand new or that I discovered it.  Nope it's been around for a while but I've never felt the urge to buy one until recently.  Which is odd because I've let out more than my fair share of sighs, eye rolls and "No he/she did-unt" in my day.  Let's face it. We all have stress in our lives and people handle it differently.  Some people punch walls.  Some people bottle it up and require prescriptions.  Some people take to Facebook and write obscure messages.  None of which are my style.

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