Thursday, April 23, 2015

Things I'm Loving

Just a few things I've been loving lately...



Its Skimm Day! I've been getting theSkimm emails since last fall. Love it! theSkimm is a daily email service that sends a summary of the world's biggest news stories right to your inbox every morning. It's one of the first things I read every day. It's nice to get a quick version of what's going on, plus the humor included is great. Use this link to sign up if you'd like to get the latest headlines delivered straight to your inbox.

Fed Up


This documentary is a must-see for everyone in our country. I really love nutrition documentaries in general but this one is really good. It focuses on the childhood obesity epidemic that our nation is being plagued with and the goverment's role in keeping it an epidemic. Such great insight that all parents and even kids should hear. Plus, it features some of my favorite nutrition experts and activists. Marion Nestle, Michael Pollan, Robert Lustig, Mark Hyman. #nerdalert

**A calorie burned is a calorie burned. A calorie eaten is not a calorie eaten.

Old Navy Active Wear

I swear by the Old Navy Active Wear line. Especially the sports bras. When I got an email of a one day sale for $6 sports bras, that was my first stop when I got off work yesterday. I got all of the above for only $41! You can never have too many workout tops or sports bras!

Almond Breeze Almond Coconut Milk

Have you tried the Almond Breeze Almond Coconut yet? So good! Kaydin is a huge fan of coconut milk and loves this almond coconut milk blend just as much. Blue Diamond reached out offering the chance to try this flavor and I was happy to accept given that it's already a regular purchase for us! Didn't have to twist my arm to share with the world. Great for cereal, smoothies, even baking! And Kaydin's favorite- by the glass full! :)

I was given free product but no other compensation was offered. All opinions are my own.

My life

Yep, loving life! So much has been going lately. Some things normal, basic routine parts of life, others just simple family time, and others different out of ordinary happenings. I'll hopefully get around to documenting it here soon. I've been slacking in updating this "online journal" of mine and I miss it!

Anything you are loving lately?

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Easter Weekend 2015

I always love the Easter season! It means spring is here (or at least really close), green grass, warmer weather and sunshine!

And that's what we were treated with this year over Easter weekend. It's the nicest one I can remember for the last several years.

We loaded up the dogs and made the trip north Saturday morning to spend the day with my family. I was excited to get up there because I got an unfortunate and scary call from my mom on April 1st telling me the fire department was at their place. She tells me, "Well the fire department is here. Our place is on fire." Surprisingly she seemed pretty calm, but I was the one freaking out yelling for her to tell me what was going on and if the house was on fire. Luckily, it wasn't and they predicted it wouldn't turn that way either. It was the grove of trees, Kaydin's playhouse and possibly the big garage where they store lots of things. I didn't get much time on the phone with her because my dad had just rushed into the driveway. She called him when she saw the fire and he flew home from work. I was at work in Des Moines and nervous and just hoping for more news soon. 

My brother, Josh, texted me shortly after I got off the phone with her asking if' I'd talked to Mom. I told him yes I had and that she scared the sh*t out of me! He responds, "Is it an April Fool's Day joke?" I realized it was April 1st, that she seemed calm and her story didn't make much sense. I realized she had got us good, that it was all just a joke. I didn't get to live out that much preferred scenario for long, though, because she sent us a picture of many fire trucks in the yard! 

Ten firetrucks turned up on the property to fight the blaze but it all turned out fairly well considering. Kaydin's playhouse was completely burned along with everything in it. Lots of yard decorations and garden supplies among lots of others things. They lost a few big trees and the big garage had some flames start on the west side of it but the firefighters were able to out that out early and nothing was lost, just a few burn marks on the wooden walls. Dad replaced the roof with tin last year and it's a good thing he did or it would've have gone up in flames just as fast as the playhouse did. When Mom saw smoke out the kitchen window and ran to the backyard, the playhouse was completely engulfed in flames higher than she's ever seen.

The After

The Before

It's sad that we lost the playhouse because it was built by hand by my dad and Josh using old barn wood from the property, but it could have ended up much, much worse. I'm just glad the wind wasn't coming from the other direction or the house might've been in more danger.

After checking out the burned damage and hearing Mom and Dad's stories, Kaydin hopped on her four wheeler and was anxious to give me a ride. That little dare devil drives too fast in my opinion, but at least she wears her helmet!

She disappeared for a few minutes so Dad went out back to see what she was doing. The next thing I see is them pushing the thing. Guess she ran out of gas! Papa to the rescue! 

After we ate lunch and let the dogs run around for awhile, we headed into town for the annual egg hunt. She's participated in this one a few times in years past and there's always a huge turnout! 

This year she actually ran and tried hard to get in there and fight for eggs. She was really hoping for a piece of paper indicating a special prize. Sadly, she didn't find one but it was still a fun event we ran into some other family too. Aunts and cousins that live in the area or were home for the holiday weekend.

Back home we went and set up the ladderball game. We packed Tim's since Mom and Dad's was burned in the playhouse. Kaydin chose her Dad as her partner but they couldn't pull out a win. Papa and I racked up the points faster than they could! :)

Lunch was a mix of lots of delicious options with scalloped potatoes and ham as the main dish. A hands off entree makes for a pretty easy cooking day! 

I made a new to us salad with toffee baked pretzels, whipped cream, cream cheese, and strawberries. Turned out so well! I think it will be making more appearances on our holiday dinner tables. I also made a classic jello cake topped with whipped cream, the real stuff. No Cool Whip was in our desserts this year and it's so much better! Take the time and whip heavy cream with vanilla beans and a little powdered sugar. Real ingredients and delicious! I think for the most part, I've converted my parents.

I kicked Kaydin out of the family of four picture and she was not happy! So she had her own little photo shoot with her auntie and uncle posing like a little bunny. Kerstin and Kaydin were making lots of funny faces but no one told josh so he just sat there smiling like a good little boy. LOL

We headed back home that evening to be home for the Easter Bunny to visit Kaydin Baby at home. She was up bright and early checking her basket to see if he visited. He did and she immediately put her new movie, Big Hero 6, in the blu ray player. After that was over we had to watch Hop, an Easter tradition since we went to the theater to see it the year it was released on Easter.

After lounging for part of the morning while listening to the church sermon through the live stream, it was time to clean her room detangle her hair, and head out for lunch at Bravo.

She was bribed to eat the whole squids that ended up on our appetizer plate. That kid will eat almost anything Tim tries coaxing her into. Not surprisingly, she agreed to his offer and ate what he was encouraging her to, just like every other time. Surprisingly, she liked it!  

My entree choice was so good! Two homemade biscuits topped with arugula, bacon, eggs, and a creamy sriracha sauce. Loved it!

Another treat for the day was heading to the movie, Home. Kaydin had been asking for weeks to see the movie, even before it came out. So with not much more on the agenda for the day, we headed to the theater. Tim reeeeeally loved it! #totalsarcasm  It was a cute movie though!

The rest of the day was spent relaxing on the couch and and not doing too much of anything.

Did you have a good Easter weekend?

Thursday, April 2, 2015

Pin It Party 3.0

I'm joining in on another Pin It Party hosted by Lindsay at The Lean Green Bean!


I looked back and it has been almost two years since I've participated in the Pin It Party linkups. CANNOT even believe it's been that long! I was searching through spring of 2014 archive posts cuz I really thought it had only been about a year. Crazy how fast time goes by.

Anyway...we are all Pinterest addicts, am I right?? Actually, I had really laid off and got burnt out because I started using it a lot back in early 2011 before it was very popular. (Although, I have gotten back into the habit of scrolling through the app the last couple months while I'm laying in bed at night.) In fact, I even remember that the way the Pinterest's creators actually originally envisioned the site was NOT to be self-promotion. That's the guidance the site gave in the beginning anyway. I specifically remember that it read Pinterest was not to be used for self-promotion.

Today, Pinterest operates in a completely different manner. People are constantly hawking their own websites and lots even get most of their hits and income from Pinterest. Since I remember and was participating in Pinterest during the early days, I wasn't too fond of the idea of all the self-promotion and the animal it's turned into. But technology changes and evolves everyday and more and more people are earning their living and supporting their families off of their websites and pinned content.

Of course, I have no desire to make this blog my sole career and income (hence why this is only my 10th post of 2015) and truly enjoy my work outside of my home. To those that have do earn their income by route of an online website and using Pinterest, more power to you and I'm sometimes jealous of your entrepreneurial spirit. Now, with all that said, how about a little bit of self-promotion and going against everything I just said above ;) And know that this post will probably earn me zero, zilch, nothing :) I just have a few recipes I'd like to mention again because they are that good!

Fresh Pressed Green Juice + Juicing 101

Blueberry Lemon Buttermilk Pancakes

Crab Rangoon Pizza

Bacon, Blue Cheese, Spinach Puff Pizza

Hop on over to Lindsay's link up page to find even more delicious recipes and lots, lots more, I'm sure!

Find me on Pinterest here! :)