Tuesday, May 31, 2011
I have a confession to make...I am a snacking fool. I love salty snacks, crunchy snacks, spicy snacks, sweet snacks and sweet and salty snacks. I have not met a snack that I didn't like. THIS can be dangerous to the waistline. But still...snacks are sooooo good. The important thing is to choose the best snacks possible that will satisfy all your desires without sacrificing taste or your waste. Enter Babee Love and her review AND giveaway for Popchips. Popchips comes in a variety of flavors and they are popped...yep popped. They aren't bland and baked and they aren't fried and greasy. They are my snacker dream. And located in stores EVERYWHERE. But hey, we all like to win something too. Here is your chance.
One winner will win a month a certificate good for a month of yummy, delicious Popchips. Head on over to Babee Love for her review and giveaway now! This giveaway ends on 6/9/2011. Go on, you know you want to!
Right now I am indulging in a very yummy frozen lemonade made with the juice and pulp of half a lemon, half a cup of water, a cup of ice and five drops of vanilla cream stevia. It is tasty and satisfies the sweet desires of my dieting heart.
Whiles I am enjoying it, I am also dreaming of the yummy recipes that I want to try.
Recently I stopped at Rootie Tootie Fresh and Foodie, and was thrilled with all the yummy recipes I saw. There are a few that really spoke to me.
Crunchy Peanut Butter Chocolate Sandwiches - This recipe has a component that satisfies that salty side of my sweet loving...Popchips!
I am enthralled with energy bars and anything that is no bake. So I swooned a bit when I saw the No-Bake Peanut Butter Energy Bites. They are, as stated, bite-sized and look amazing. Bite-sized is good, because you can enjoy a treat and not go overboard.
And it isn't all about sweets either. There is a wonderful recipe for a Smoky Chipotle Vegetarian Bowl. I am looking forward to making this because I really want to establish more meatless nights at home.
Fresh Cranberry and Orange Relish - Something about the idea of fresh cranberries and Oranges really caught me. I love a nice fruity side dish, and although this might be designed for Thanksgiving, I think it would be great for a side with chicken or pork chops (I love pork chops). Anyway, I found this delightful recipe at Busy Working Mama! She now has a recipe site that I follow and will definitely become devoted to called Recipe Obsessed.
Cheese Mushroom and Spinach Stuffed Pasta Shells - When I lived in Rhode Island, I developed a fondness for all things Italian. I was fortunate in that one of my best friends had a gramma who would cook us all kind of yummy Italian goodies. I sadly have never made anything myself. Well, I do make great stuffed peppers, lasagna, and meatballs and sausage, but I have always wanted to make stuffed shells. I found a fabulous recipe at Recipe Obsessed. It contains many of my favorite ingredients: Cheese, onions, spinach and mushrooms. I plan on making this ASAP!
Slow Cooked Apple Butter - Whenever my husband and I go to a farmer's market or a lil country store, he eyes the apple butter like a hopeful child on Christmas Eve. It is really rather cute. I make a point of purchasing it whenever I have a chance. What would make me truly happy is to learn to make my own. I found a lovely recipe at Gina's Skinny Recipes, and I am especially excited about being able to use the slow cooker for this one. Gina's is another site that I may have to haunt. There are lots of great recipes, and if you are on Weight Watchers, you will find many point value recipes too! Be sure to check it out.
Easy Garlic Cheddar Biscuits - A friend of mine went to eat at Red Lobster once and brought me back a salad. With the salad were these yummy cheddar biscuits. I felt like the bread lover in me died and went to carb-lovin Heaven! You'd think that I would have begged my fabulous husband to take me some time. I almost did several times, but sadly we just couldn't afford it. I don't know if these will taste the same, but Gina's Skinny Recipes has a great looking recipe, and I just had to mark it down. Besides...garlic is VERY good for you.
Chicken Pot Pie Soup - I am all about comfort food. I grew up with favorites like Navy Bean soup from Marie Callenders and my grandma's split pea. Another comfort food for me was, and still is actually, the chicken pot pie. When I saw Gina's Skinny Recipes recipe for Chicken Pot Pie soup, I believe I gasped. This will be ideal for Fall. Actually I can go for this any time. My husband might want to wait for cooler weather, but I can actually do soup at any time.
Strawberry-Yogurt Swirl Popsicles - I am crazy about popsicles. This season is the perfect time for popsicles. Since I don't have an ice cream maker, this fabulous recipe will satisfy my desire for those cold and yummy treats. This recipe comes straight from The Hungry Housewife which is a simply fabulous foodie blog. She makes things tasty and simple...just how I like them! I think you will love it too.
I hope you see something you like in my latest foodie fantasy. :)
Monday, May 30, 2011
I love family game night, and honestly, we don't get to enjoy it enough. Now that summer is here, I made everyone promise that we will devote our Friday's once again to playing a fun game. We have plenty to choose from. My total fave is Monopoly, but I am also into Scene It and Scrabble. My son is not a big Scene It fan, but I think it is because ours in the 80s edition. We will have to do something about that.
I am hoping to add a fun card game and some amazing treats too. Susan Heim from the Blog Susan Heim on Parenting is hosting a giveaway that will supply both fun and a tasty treat. She will fill you in on the wonderful Kisses Family Game Night (there is an opportunity to win from www.kissesfamilygamenight.com up to $10,000 and also some other fun prizes). Susan is kicking things off nicely for her readers by offering a giveaway for a Ratuki game from Hasbro AND 3 Bags of Hershey's Kisses! Susan kindly offers lots of ways to enter. But don't delay as this giveaway ends on 6/3/2011.
Confession time....my husband is lactose intolerant. Poor guy. I wonder truly how that even happens. How do you live a life where you can totally enjoy all dairy products and then one day...SNAP...your tummy is on strike, and you now have to look for alternatives.
This can be really rough on him, because he loves all things milky. The man literally had to have milk with his dinner EVERY night. We used the lactose free milk for a while, but after a bit, he was finding that he was still having a problem and even Lactaid pills weren't helping him out.
Silk became our switch. He lived off of Silk soy milk and even grew to like that more than regular milk. Now Silk has branched into almond milk, and we are eagerly looking forward to giving it a shot and seeing which he likes better. We have tried the regular so far, and have thought about trying the vanilla option to maybe add a different taste to his favorite smoothies (he can do yogurt). Anyway, we are hoping to get a leg up on the try out by being one of the TWO winners at Babee Love (don't you love that name?). Babee Love will be choosing two winners who will receive one Coupon for Silk and a Silk Branded Chico bag. Fun right? You can get in on it too right now if you head on over to Babee Love. This giveaway ends on 6/3/2011 so there is still time.
We all know at this point that we should drink more water. Our bodies are made primarily of water so it is vital that we keep ourselves refreshed. Life in the Lost World has a giveaway going on right now that will make it easier for you to get that water each and every day. Thanks to Contigo, one of her readers is going to win a 24 oz AutoSeal water bottle. Plenty of water to take with you anywhere, AND you are not going to make a silly little mess on yourself. Seriously, this has happened to me more than once. I take a gulp out of my stainless steel bottle and next thing you know it splashes on my face. No joke. So obviously, I had to take a chance on this, and I hope you do too. This great giveaway ends on 6/5/2011.
I have been on the hCG diet for DAYS AND DAYS AND DAYS. And I miss salty nutty crunchy and chocolately snacks! No really I do. I am happy about the weight loss. It has been 38 days and I am at 25 pounds lost. But I miss snacks. I am planning on celebrating my weight loss with some tempting snacks. I have learned portion control, so I am ready to THROW DOWN. One of the snacks that I want to try is FunkyChunky Artisan Snacks. They have chocolate and popcorn, caramel, pretzels and more. They even have a special sale going on, and even better a giveaway is going on at Sweeps4Bloggers!
Yes Sweeps4Bloggers has done it again, and is going to bless a winner with a Tall canister of their choice. Check out FunkyChunky and see what you would choose. And definitely hurry over to Sweeps4Bloggers and enter this giveaway. Giveaway ends on 6/14/11.
Coffee is one of my loves in life. I fell in love with coffee when I worked my first job at the mall. Every morning I would go to the little breakfast/lunch kiosk by my store, and grab a large coffee with lots of cream and sugar. To this day I can still taste that yummy coffee. I was devastated when they eventually closed that kiosk. Fortunately I still found yummy coffee, and I have tried many, many kinds.
I am hoping to try Marley Coffee's Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee. Doesn't it sound smooth and yummy? I am strongly looking forward to ordering it, but first I am also going to try to win it. And you can too! Sweeps4Bloggers is hosting a giveaway for Marley Coffee's Jamaican Blue Mountain Coffee. There will be FIVE winners! Get in on this giveaway now. Giveaway ends on June 10, 2011.
Friday, May 27, 2011
I am a huge ice cream lover. I love all kinds and seriously appreciate companies like Blue Bell, because they make crazy good ice cream. My sister-in-law started making her own a few years ago, and it is always awesome. Yesterday I was shopping and saw an ice cream maker, but since I had just purchased a Magic Bullet blender, I told myself to walk away and start saving. But...
Make Ahead Meals For Mom is having a giveaway for a Cuisinart Ice Cream Maker. Cuisinart!!!! This giveaway is sponsored by Chef's Catalog. This giveaway is for a Cuisinart Pure Indulgence Frozen Yogurt-Sorbet and Ice Cream Maker, a set of four BIA Cordon Bleu White Porcelain Ice Cream Bowls, a set of 8 Stainless-Steel Ice Cream Spoons AND one package of LorAnn Oils Flavor Fountain Ice Cream Flavorings.
Maybe just maybe I can win this amazing prize pack. Either way, I now have a fabulous place to buy it if I don't win. Check out the giveaway at Make Ahead Meals For Busy Moms. And don't forget to keep Chef's Catalog in mind for your next yummy making purchase.
This hCG diet is rough in some ways. I have very little meal variety, but it is amazing in other ways. I have lost some serious weight, and I am terribly happy about that. In fact I have lost 23 pounds since Easter. It is also nice to know that I can do without sugar (not that I want to - I love my sugar). I will be finished with my first round on June 3rd and then move to phase 3 where I can eat more calories and add several foods. I still can't have sugar or starches, but that is okay with me. I miss nuts, and I am looking forward to having them! And ooooh avocado and eggs are also calling my name (not together though).
While on the diet, I have found some recipes that are really tempting, and since I can't have them yet...I thought I would share them here (well the links) so I can come back and go cooking crazy (with sensibility toward calories of course).
Chinese Roasted Chicken. This recipe I found while browsing at Frugal Dr. Mom. I love this for its simplicity, and I love that you can use a crock pot. That is probably one of my favorite things, because I love setting dinner up in the morning in a crock pot and then arriving home with that off of my hands. The ingredients are simple too, chicken, ginger root, a large onion, celery, soy sauce and Chinese 5 spice powder. Anyway, check out the recipe, and stop by Frugal Dr. Mom. You will be pleased on both counts.
Cajun Black Bean Soup. This one screamed my name, because I just love black beans. I am looking forward to being able to add them back into my diet. When I do, you can guarantee that this will be on my list. I also found this recipe at Frugal Dr. Mom. This recipe calls for onion, garlic, cumin, chili powder, oregano, salsa, black pepper, shredded cheddar cheese and three cans of Bush's black beans (though I make my own black beans so I'll use those). It is definitely one of those easy peasy recipes that I imagine I will be making again and again.
5 Ingredient 5 Minute Vegan Almond Butter Chews. This came from the lovely Oh She Glows. I stumbled on her site one day. I was looking for cracker recipes, and she had a fabulous one! Then I started to browse and found this amazing looking recipe. In fact, it made me decide I want to learn to make my own almond butter. I told a co-worker what I was thinking about doing, and she gave me her Cuisinart!!!! So needless to day, once I am able, I am going to make almond butter AND these yummy chews! Definitely check out the recipe and the blog. You will be inspired by this woman.
I would love to make some good-for-you pizza and the dough is definitely the first stop. I found a lovely recipe by Kelly from Once A Month Mom for a delightfully healthy pizza dough made with organic flour this is a pizza I can get into. Check it out when you have the chance, and hit up your local health food store.
Bre at Bre Entertains also have a fabulous looking pizza dough recipe that I am going to try. Don't fret, I have no intention of blowing the progress I have achieved from my hcg diet. Still I don't want to forget the foods I love. Check out Bre's recipe at her blog.
I love a good casserole, and I love an easy casserole. When I saw the Seven Layer Dinner at The Bird's Nest, I knew it was a treat that would please the whole family. Several simple ingredients combined to make what sounds like a tasty dish. It may seem simple to you, but for a woman who has survived on one lean beef, turkey, chicken, fish or shrimp and either a tomato, spinach or a shredded romaine lettuce salad with spices and apple cider vinegar dressing it is Nirvana!
I am totally dying to try this recipe for Shredded Beef and Avocado tostada at For the Love of Cooking. Seriously this is a site that I can get lost in! Tostadas are one of the meals that I really miss. I should say that I miss eating them, because I am still making things like this for my husband. My favorite is the Shrimp tostada. :)
Well, I could go on and on, but I actually want to post these yummy treats. I will have to dream for a bit longer, but I will be ready for carbs around the third week of June, and then I am going to get a tummy tease....of course I will do it wisely. :)
I am also participating in Follow Friday 40 and Over....and yep...I am over, but that is okay. It is all about how you feel. :) Check out Never Growing Old and join in on the following fun!
Thursday, May 26, 2011
Father's Day is rapidly approaching! I thought it would be fun to share with you some fabulously frugal Father's Day gifts.
Best-ever Barbecue Apron - You can buy an inexpensive apron at most craft stores, and let the kids have a great time. Click on the name for the Family Fun page that explains it all.
Fit To Be Tied Sunglass Sling - I don't know if I would attach the cord, but other than that I really like this sunglass case. Then again you could attach the cord and hang it from a car mirror.
Of course you probably don't know what I am referring to so click on the name to see more. This is also from Family Fun. PS You can get some great ties at Goodwill or any number of other thrift stores.
Car Wash - This has no link, because truly it is self explanatory. Get the kids together and give Dad's care some suds. Clean his vehicle inside out and save him the trouble. I am talking about a thorough cleaning job.
Duct Tape Wallet - I have seen these here and there, but I never thought of making one. The cool thing with Duct Tape is that it comes in so many colors. Follow this link for perfect step by step instructions on how to make your own Duct Tape wallet for dad.
Bake Dad a treat. This really is inexpensive and fun. If you dad favors a special cookie, brownie, cake or bar treat, why not bake him that treat? I'm a mom, and this kind of treat would make me smile.
Military families are offered free admission to 1300 different museums all over the country from May 30 to September 5th. This is for active duty military personnel and their families. Below is the list of Arizona museums that are participating in this offer. And if you would like to see which museums across the country are participating follow this link. This is part of the Blue Star Museum Initiative.
- Amerind Foundation Museum
- Arizona Historical Society Museum at Papago Park
- Arizona Historical Society's Downtown History Museum
- Arizona Historical Society's Fort Lowell Museum
- Arizona History Museum
- Arizona Museum for Youth
- Arizona Science Center
- Arizona State Museum
Tucson , AZ
- Desert Caballeros Western Museum
Wickenburg , AZ
- Desert Caballeros Western Museum
- The Heard Museum
Phoenix , AZ
- John Wesley Powell Museum
- Kitt Peak National Observatory
Sells , AZ
- The Mini Time Machine Museum of Miniatures
- Museum of Northern Arizona
- Phoenix Art Museum
- Postal History Foundation
- River of Time Museum
Fountain Hills, AZ
- Rosson House Museum
- Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art
- Sedona Heritage Museum
Since Fry's has Foster Farm split chicken breasts, drumsticks and thighs on sale for just 97 cents a pound, I thought it would be a great to share some simple and inexpensive chicken recipes with you.
Chinese Roasted Chicken
There are two recipes for this one. One uses an oven, but the one I prefer speaks to me on many levels because it allows me to utilize my crockpot which uses less energy than my stove. Using a crockpot is economical on many levels. It saves you money and time. That is the best way to save. I love getting up in the morning, tossing ingredients in a pot, and giving the crockpot the rest of my workday to do the cooking.
This recipe is from the website About.com Busy Cooks section.
- 3 stalks celery, chopped
- 1/4 cup minced ginger root
- 1 large onion, chopped
- 4-5 lb. roasting chicken, cut into pieces
- 2 Tbsp. soy sauce
- 2 tsp. Chinese five spice powder
- 1/4 tsp. pepper
In small bowl, combine soy sauce, five spice powder, and pepper to make a paste. Rub this mixture over the chicken. Place chicken on top of vegetables in crockpot. Cover crockpot and cook on LOW for 6-7 hours, until chicken is tender and juices run clear when pricked with fork and internal temperature of the white meat registers 165 degrees F. Discard vegetables and serve chicken.
* 1 1/2 kg chicken pieces (3 lb)
* 1/3 cup dark soy sauce
* 1 tablespoon honey
* 1 teaspoon five-spice powder
* 1 teaspoon garlic (crushed)
* 1 teaspoon gingerroot (grated)
* 1 tablespoon sesame oil
Marinate chicken pieces in all the other ingredients for at least 2 hours, turning pieces now and again.
Arrange in a single layer in a roasting dish and cook in a moderate oven (160 C / 325 F) for 30 minutes, turn pieces and cook a further 25 minutes.
This recipe can be found at Food.com
You might also want to check out this recipe for slow cooker chicken with biscuits. This recipe again uses my dream machine, the crock pot. You are also asked to use cream of chicken or mushroom soup as well as gravy. I always have leftover gravy when I make roasted chicken so this is a great way to use that gravy up (saving me from purchasing a jar).
- 1 1/2 to 2 pounds boneless chicken breast halves, cut in large chunks
- 1/2 cup chopped onion
- 1 cup chopped celery
- 1 can (10 3/4 ounces) condensed cream of chicken or cream of chicken and mushroom soup, undiluted
- 1 jar (12 ounces) chicken gravy
- 1/4 teaspoon poultry seasoning
- 1/2 teaspoon dried leaf thyme
- Dash black pepper
- 2 cups frozen mixed vegetables, thawed
- 6 frozen biscuits or refrigerator biscuits
Preparation:In a slow cooker, layer the chunks of uncooked chicken breasts with chopped onion and celery. Combine the soup and gravy with poultry seasoning, thyme, and pepper; pour over the chicken. Cover and cook on LOW for 5 to 6 hours. Add the thawed mixed vegetables, turn the slow cooker to HIGH, and continue cooking for 20 to 30 minutes, until vegetables are tender.
Meanwhile, bake the biscuits as directed on the package. Split a biscuit and spoon some of the chicken and vegetables over the bottom biscuit. Put the top half of the biscuit on the chicken and gravy.
I found this recipe at About.com Southern Food
I should also mention that though the recipe above suggests using refrigerated biscuits, but in order to save, lets ignore that and follow the link to this easy biscuit recipe. PS I use butter and not shortening.
Sam Club members who are looking for some samples may like to sign up for a free sample of Huggies Supreme Baby Wipes. If you have a baby or not, these are pretty awesome to have on hand.
LINK: Huggies Wipes
Blockbuster kiosks have a few free rental codes rolling around head over to your nearby kiosk and get some free entertainment. 7NCSU2 I am not sure what the expiration date is so act on this one quickly. There is also a code for Safeway Blockbuster kiosks that will be good until June 30 - GOSAFEWAY And if you have a Basha's near you, drop by their kiosk and use the code GOBASHAS which is also good until June 30th.
I've mentioned it before, but it is still available so if you missed it, get yourself a free sample of Fiber Choice. Seriously, they make fiber tasty. And that is not an easy task.
LINK: Fiber Choice Sample
If heartburn is an issue for you, and during summer BBQ season that could be just the case, sign up for a free sample of Maximum Strength Zantac. These are the kinds of things I like to throw into our road trip bag. You never know what you are going to need.
LINK: Maximum Strength Zantac
Rewards Country is offering a free three-year subscription to Working Mother Magazine. Rewards Country is like Rewards Gold. You sign up, refer a few friends, do some surveys and reviews and get free magazine subscriptions. Check them out.
LINK: Working Mother Magazine
Here is your tool to saving $10. I’m talking about an exclusive Vocalpoint promotional card you can use on any Craftsman® C3® power tool. Use it to buy that perfect Father’s Day gift. Use it on a C3 lawn tool for that gardener in your life. You can even use it to get a gift for yourself and unleash your handy side. Sign up with Vocalpoint and click on the Craftsman tool offer.
Just make sure to get yours soon before they run out!
As a Vocalpoint member, I received information on Craftsman® C3® power tools sent by Vocalpoint, on behalf of Craftsman.
FREE DOUGHNUT DAY!!!!! Okay I bolded it so you would not miss it. Participating Krisyp Creme Doughnut shops will be offering customers the doughnut of their choice for FREE!!!! Oh what a time to be on a diet! Details below.
LINK : FREE doughnut at Krispy Creme 6/3
While supplies last, sign up for a free sample of Nature's Bounty Fish Oil.
LINK: Nature's Bounty Fish Oil
Do you have a Facebook or Twitter account? Head on over to Mojo and get a free sample of their MojoMilk. All they ask is that you share this with your friends with a post.
LINK: MojoMilk Freebie
FreeCCM again is wowing their members with some great free Christian music. This week's special offering is 33Miles song "Today." In addition you can still get songs from Stellar Kart, Chasen, Phillips, Craig & Dean, Chris Rice, and Cloverton. They also have great giveaways. Follow the link below and sign up.
LINK: FreeCCM Free Christian Music
Amazon and Barnes & Noble both have a great free ebook that you might totally like to check out. It is called "Coffee Shop Conversations" and it is by Dale and Jonalyn Fincher. This book is designed to be a witnessing tool for those who need some pointers on how to comfortably share their faith.
AMAZON LINK: Coffee Shop Conversations
BARNES & NOBLE LINK: Coffee Shop Conversations
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
I’m talking about an exclusive Vocalpoint promotional card you can use on any Craftsman® C3® power tool. Use it to buy that perfect Father’s Day gift. Use it on a C3 lawn tool for that gardener in your life. Heck, use it to get a gift for yourself and unleash your handy side.
Just make sure to get yours soon before they run out!
As a Vocalpoint member, I received information on Craftsman® C3® power tools sent by Vocalpoint, on behalf of Craftsman.
Saturday, May 21, 2011
I found a fabulous giveaway at Fiesty Frugal & Fabulous from Hapari Swimwear. Hapari has some of the CUTEST tankinis (which is what I love) and other adorable swimsuit styles. Go check them out at Hapari.com
Check out the giveaway at this link: Fiesty Frugal & Fabulous
Thursday, May 19, 2011
When summer is on the way, I start thinking about change. Usually that change starts small, like a hairstyle. I usually am pretty good with picking something that I think will look good, but occasionally I have made some errors (blue hair anyone?). Next time I go for a new look, I am going to go to Clairol.com and check into their Try It On Studio. The Try It On Studio is a wonderful place to upload your picture and try out new colors and new hairstyles. If you can't upload a picture, you can also pick a model whose looks match your own. It is a fabulous free tool.
LINK: Try It On Studio
In order to save money, I am learning to make more of my convenience foods rather than purchase them. There are two reasons for this. One is of course to save money, but the other is simply because I am trying to keep my family from things like corn syrup and preservatives. I thought it would be neat to share with you some of the recipes that I have found. These aren't my own concoctions though I do hope to get there some day. I'll try to add a few each week.
This is an easy recipe that I found one day while watching videos on Swagbucks. This recipe comes from Prevention and are just 19 cents per serving.
2 c cereal, coarsely chopped
3/4 c roasted unsalted nuts, coarsely chopped
3/4 c dried fruit, coarsely chopped
2 Tbsp whole wheat flour
1/2 c second nut or fruit or an extra (like chocolate chips, coconut, peanut butter chips, sunflower sees) optional
1/3 c sugar, honey, or brown sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 lg egg whites
1/2 tsp vanilla or almond extract, optional
1. Heat oven to 300°F. Line 9" x 9" baking pan with foil. Oil and flour the foil. (An 8" x 8" pan can be used. Just bake 5 to 10 additional minutes.)
2. Mix cereal, nuts, fruit, flour, and an extra, if using, in large bowl.
3. Combine sugar and salt in small bowl. Whisk in egg whites and extract, if using. Pour mixture into dry ingredients and stir to combine.
4. Pat into the prepared pan with moist hands or plastic wrap.
5. Bake until bars are dry to the touch, 45 minutes to 1 hour, depending on ingredients used. Cool completely.Follow this link for the recipe and for some cool options: Prevention Energy Bars
I love, love, love crackers. Of course, I'm on a diet right now so I can't have them, but when I am off, I am totally going to try my hand at making these yummy wheat crackers.
This Recipe is from AllRecipes.com
1 3/4 cups whole wheat flour
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup vegetable oil (I suggest olive oil)
1 cup water
salt for sprinkling
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).
2. In a medium bowl, stir together the whole wheat flour, all-purpose flour, and 3/4 teaspoon salt. Pour in the vegetable oil and water; mix until just blended.
3. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough as thin as possible - no thicker than 1/8 inch. Place dough on an ungreased baking sheet, and mark squares out with a knife, but don't cut through. Prick each cracker with a fork a few times, and sprinkle with salt.
4. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes in the preheated oven, or until crisp and light brown. Baking time may be different depending on how thin your crackers are. When cool, remove from baking sheet, and separate into individual crackers.
For another yummy cracker recipe, check out this link for Any Way You Like 'Em crackers at the blog Oh She Glows.
BROWN SUGAR BODY SCRUB
This is a recipe that I believe I picked up from Woman's World. It has been a long time though so I am not sure of its origin.
1/2 cup ground almonds
1/2 cup ground oatmeal
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 cup almond oil
Combine the almonds, oatmeal, and brown sugar into a food processor and blend well. Scrap ingredients into a bowl and add the vanilla and almond oil. Stir well until mixture is in a paste form.
USE: Apply to wet skin (shower a good idea) and pay special attention to dry skin area. Leave on for several minutes followed by a warm water rinse. Any leftovers can be refrigerated for up to five days. This really makes your skin feel great.
BANANA HAIR MASK
This is a great treat to make when you have a banana that is too ripe to eat, and you aren't in the mood to make banana bread (usually my first choice when I have dark brown bananas). This is a great mask for dry hair.
1 ripe banana
1 Tbs honey
1 Tbs olive oil
Whip all ingredients until smooth and creamy. Massage them into damp hair. Cover your hair with plastic wrap and let sit for 30 to 60 minutes. Rinse VERY well. This is so good for damaged hair you are going to want to set aside bananas for this all the time!
These one-ingredient beauty tricks are thrifty and effective.
1 - Phillips Milk of Magnesia (blue bottle) - This is a great acne mask for those with oily skin. Apply on face in a mask and let dry. Wash away with warm water.
2 - Coconut oil makes a great body moisturizer. Put it on after a shower and let it soak in before toweling dry.
3 - Flaxseed oil is very effective in reducing redness on the skin. Apply a light amount onto your face.
4 - Olive oil is a great treatment for hair. Heat about 1/4 on the stove to warm (not hot) and apply to the scalp and comb through your hair. Leave in for 15 minutes before washing out.
5 - Rub cucumber on your skin to remove brown age spots. (honestly I am not sure about this one, but since cucumber smells so nice and is so soothing, why not give it a try).
Starting at 11am Pacific time, Clif Bar will be giving away Free Chocolate Chip Coconut Clif Bars to the first 7500 to sign up on their Facebook page. Got to love those Facebook freebies. :)
LINK: Clif Bar giveaway
Got a pup? Get a free sample of Alpo Prime Cuts for dogs at Walmart's site. There is more than one page. This offer is on the second one (you have to click on the circles in the top right). Sign up and get your pup a treat while supplies last.
LINK: Free Alpo Prime Cuts sample for dogs
Walmart also has a coupon you can print out for a free 2 oz sample of RevitaLens Ocu Tec Multi-purpose disinfecting solution (plus a lens case). Print it out and take it into your Walmart Vision Center while supplies last.
LINK: RevitaLens Ocu Tec MPDS
While supplies last sign up for a free sample of Philosophy anti-aging eye cream. This is some good stuff!
LINK: Philosophy Anti-Aging Eye Cream
Who hasn't had a chance to sign up for the free sample of the Shout Color Catcher? If you raised your hand or just said "Me" or even said "Color what?" Then sign up now for this fabulous sample. Toss the color catcher in the laundry with those possible runny clothes, and it will catch all that excess color and save your clothes!
LINK: Shout Color Catcher Sample
Sign up for a free sample of Garnier Fructis Anti-Dandruff shampoo while supplies last. I talked to my hair dresser about what shampoo would be good for dandruff and she said that other than a salon brand, Garnier is THE best.
LINK: Garnier Fructis Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
Sign up at the link below for a free sample of Gucci Guilty fragrance.
LINK: Gucci Guilty
Get your fiber the yummy way with a free sample of FiberChoice. These are seriously my favorite. They taste totally yummy.
FreeCCM is at it again with some amazing free music downloads. This week you can download Stellar Kart's "Like The Sun," Chasen's "Slow Down," in addition to songs by Bart Millard, Phillips, Craig & Dean, Cloverton, and Chris Rice. Every week FreeCCM gives music lovers a new song to enjoy. So always check back with them.
LINK: FreeCCM Free Christian Music
Saturday, May 14, 2011
Chief Family Officer and Lysol have gotten together for a wonderful giveaway and TWO people are going to win a $25 gift card to Bed Bath & Beyond! I am seriously stoked about this, and I am sure you will be too.
After you enter, you might want to take a browse at Chief Family Officer's blog, because she has some awesome tips for all those who are looking for ways to save.
Giveaway is here. Hurry as this giveaway ends on May 19th!
I love, love love me some beautiful jewelry, and there is a company out there with some exceptional style. That company is Stella & Dot. They have stunning necklaces, bracelets, rings and more. Seriously give them a look. They are getting quite a bit of buzz out there. I'd like to recommend one of the best ways to give them a look right now, and that is by heading on over to Who Doesn't Love Coupons and entering her giveaway.
That's right! Who Doesn't Love Coupons is holding a special Stella & Dot giveaway for a lovely bracelet from their collection. This is a giveaway worth checking a look. Check it out HERE.
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
Extreme Couponing from TLC got me to thinking about the ways I get coupons. I have to say that I have never dumpster dived or went through recycling cans. I think sometimes maybe I should, but then again no. The fact is coupons aren't just for newspapers anymore, though I must admit that I am a HUGE lover of the newspaper coupons and will always purchase my Sunday paper and clip away (well except on major holidays when there are no coupons). Here are a few places where you can locate some more coupons.
Online newspapers - Did you know that major newspapers also have online printable coupons? Here is the link for some printable coupons from the Arizona Republic: Coupons
Mambo Sprouts (organic products)
Your local grocery store may also have a way for you to print coupons online. So be sure to look up their sites as well. Also be sure to check out your favorite products web pages. You never know when a great deal will pop up. For example, when I was on Coupon Spotters, I found out that I could get a printable coupon for $1 off McDonald's Frozen Strawberry Lemonade, Frappe or Fruit Smoothies (my personal favorite).
Lastly do not forget Cellfire.com What is better than just loading a coupon directly to your shoppers card. No cutting and no forgetting.
PRICE MATCHING TIP
Okay we all know about Walmart's price matching, but did you know that there are other stores that offer price matching? Target, Kohl's and Hobby Lobby also price match AND Lowe's price matches and if you find an identical item at a competitors store Lowe's will actually beat that price by 10%! So don't be shy...know your prices.
I love, love, love snack bars, and Zone Perfect is definitely one of the tops. They have a sweet and salty bar that you can try now. Just head on over to their facebook page and sign yourself up for a free Sweet and Salty Zone Perfect bar. You also have the option to invite three friends to try it.
LINK: Zone Perfect Sweet & Salty
I have learned to love cooking. One of my favorite things about cooking is using different spices. It is amazing how the right spices can totally jazz up the taste of the dishes you cook. I have to say that my spice cabinet is overflowing, but there is always room for more. Especially when it is free and it is from Emeril Lagasse. While supplies last you can sign up for Emeril's Original seasoning packet. This is a fabulous way to give your own recipes a kick.
LINK: Emeril Original seasoning packet
Sign up your children now for a free Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic on May 28th where they can build a biplane! It is seriously cute. While you are at the website you may also like to sign them up for the clinic to build a fun father's day gift of Goofy Golf on June 11th. Follow the link below to get your kids set up for some learning fun.
LINK: Lowe's Build and Grow Clinic
Like Arby's on Facebook and get a coupon for a free Market Fresh Sandwich with the purchase of a drink.
International Museum Day is May 18th and many Valley museums will be offering half price admission and other admission discounts. Get all the details at the link below.
LINK: International Museum Day
I don't know about you, but I LOVE chocolate. If I weren't on a diet, I would leap on this offer for a free sample of chocolate from Gimi Chocolate. Oh who am I kidding, I'll order it anyway. :) It is Swiss chocolate, and from what I hear, the Swiss really got their chocolate down. :) Sign up while supplies last.
LINK: Gimi Chocolate
Okay...I don't know what the freebie is going to be, but I do know that Old Spice will be giving away 10,000 of them today. So if you care to like them on Facebook, you just might get a pretty awesome freebie.
LINK: Old Spice Facebook Freebie
Clairol is also going to be surprising their fans on the 13th to the 15th of May at 12:oo pm with coupons for a great hair color freebie. Mark your online calendars and stop by.
LINK: Clairol Facebook Freebie
Sign up for a free sample of Soooo Sweet Stevia if you are ready to break the sugar habit and go for something low cal and natural.
LINK: Soooo Sweet Stevia
If you haven't taken the opportunity yet, you can still sign up for a free sample of Miracle Whip. I'll be honest, it isn't my thing, but my husband likes it.
LINK: Miracle Whip
If you have a child entering toddlerhood, you might want to sign up for the Beech Nut Toddler Welcome Kit. This kit contains great coupons with some fabulous savings while you are moving your child past the baby food.
LINK: Beech Nut Toddler Welcome Kit
iTickets.com has two great downloads this week. Remember that you do have to be a member. Sign up to get Nicole C. Mullen's "Kingdom Come" and Anthem Lights' "Can't Shut Up."
LINK: itickets free songs
If you like shopping at Zappos, you might want to sign up for Zappos VIP. For a limited time you can get FREE...yes FREE unlimited overnight shipping. :)
LINK: Zappos VIP
Thursday, May 5, 2011
Yavapai Humane Society is celebrating Cinco de Meow Bow Wow or something to that effect. If you are looking into adopting a new furry family member, today is the day. All dog and cat adoptions are 50% off! This is definitely the time to share the love.
FREE ACTIVITY FOR FRIDAY
BIG THANKS to Jen from Chino Valley for this tip:
Tomorrow is National Public Gardens Day and that means admission is FREE to many of America's public gardens. This includes the beautiful Desert Botanical Garden in Phoenix! Tomorrow only (May 6th) you can get free admission to the Spring Butterfly Exhibit as well as the garden! This is from 7:00 am to 8:00 pm. What a great way to start the weekend!LINK: Desert Botanical Garden - National Public Gardens Day
LINK: National Public Gardens Day (for those not in Arizona)
With stores closing down in malls, online coupon codes, and sheer convenience, it is becoming more and more popular to shop online. There is only one downside...getting the right size. If you don't, you end up sending things back which can be a real pain, and I can attest to keeping a few items because sending them back was more bother. Now you can go to SizeWize.com. At SizeWize.com you give them your measurements and they will give you options for the brands in your size. No more guessing! You can even grab an article of clothing out of your closet such as a favorite pair of jeans, put in the brand, what the item is, the size, and it will search for you. I absolutely love this site! Check it out at the link below.
More people than ever are starting to look into credit counseling. I found some articles recently with some warnings for consumers who are looking into working with a credit counselor, and I thought I would share some of this with you. One thing that was very important was that a person who is seeking out a credit counselor needs to have steady income. This is because if you default on the payment plan, you will be dropped. I know you may be thinking that if a person had a steady income this wouldn't even be needed, but you would be surprised at how many individuals with even very well-paying jobs can have problems with debt management. It is a skill that is not taught enough.
It is important to choose a nonprofit company that is approved by the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (locate them at NFCC.org) or is affiliated with another national body. According to their guidelines you should choose an agency. They will have annual audits.
Look for a company that will charge roughly $50 for start up and between $25 to $50 a month.
These companies should also teach budgeting skills as well as help you devise a plan to prevent future issues. Their goal is to counsel you and educate you so that you will not have any future debt issues.
The NFCC has some great guidelines to follow on their website here. One that I hadn't even considered was asking where your first payment goes. This site is a wealth of information that you just cannot pass up!
While supplies last sign up for your free sample of Brez units which help or eliminate snoring. Isn't it nice to know there are people out there trying to help us all out?
Nescafe Taster's Choice has a free sample via Facebook of their yummy and convenient single serve samples of their coffee sticks.
LINK: Nescafe Taster's Choice Sample
Another Rewards Gold opportunity awaits for a subscription to Bloomberg magazine. This is THE magazine my husband reads. Well...the financial one. It is just right for us. Informative without flying right over our heads. Refer some friends, take a survey and do some quick reviews, and you will get a great magazine.
LINK: Bloomberg magazine subscription
Get Ironman perform sports drink when you register at PowerBar. This is a printable coupon freebie that can be used at GNC stores.
LINK: Free Ironman perform sports drink
During the month of May Zapzyt will be 250 lip balms each week to their Facebook fans. Like them on Facebook and then click on the enter link which will bring you to their website to enter the contest. There are two entry forms on that page. Go to the one on the right.
LINK: Zapzyt Lip Balm giveaway
Want to get your hands on a Pringles speaker? Pringles has a special promotion going on right now. Buy four Superstack Pringles cans. Print out the rebate form. Fill out everything and follow all the directions before mailing it in. Your Pringles can speaker should arrive in 10 to 12 weeks. Simple as can be. Follow the link below to learn more, and remember to follow all directions. I also like to make one copy of everything I send out. This offer runs from 4/15/2011 to 10/31/11 and rebate must be postmarked by 11/30/2011.
LINK: Pringles Speaker Can
Sign up for your free sample of AlternaVites. A more pleasant alternative than a great big ole pill. Follow the link below and get yours while supplies last.
Walmart has a free sample of John Frieda's Root Awakening. These do not last long so get it while you can!
LINK: John Frieda's Root Awakening
Free CCM's newest download this week is Phillips, Craig & Dean's song "Amazed" from their CD "Top Of My Lungs." You can also still download great songs from Laura Story, Jonny Diaz, Cloverton, Chris Rice, Bart Millard and more. Check out the link below. You do have to register in order to download these free songs, but trust me they will not spam you.
LINK: Free CCM Christian Music Downloads
Amazon has some more great free Christian books for your Kindle or Kindle apps. Check these out:
A Tailor-Made Bride by Karen Witemeyer (Amazon)
A Tailor-Made Bride by Karen Witemeyer (Barnes & Noble Nook)
A Praying Life: Connecting with God in a Distracting World by Paul Miller (Amazon)
Too Close to Home (Women of Justice Series #1) by Lynette Eason (Amazon)
Too Close to Home (Women of Justice Series #1) by Lynette Eason (Barnes & Noble Nook)
Making Waves: A Novel by Lorna Seilstad (Amazon)
Making Waves: A Novel by Lorna Seilstad (Barnes & Noble Nook)
Digital Disciple by Adam Thomas (Amazon)
Digital Disciple by Adam Thomas (Barnes & Noble Nook)
And don't forget you can also download free books at gutenberg.org or questia.com/publicdomainindex