They Make Me Happy

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They make me so happy. Watching cousins love each other and soak up the beauty of the world is one of the best things.

It reminds me of how things once were for me as a kid, and makes me pray that these ‘lil cousins will always have this bond. This love. This unconditional heart link.

Thank you, Aliyyah and Mom W, for sharing this moment in photo, and for sharing your time with our other ‘lil loves.

Promise Me

After three (short) days in paradise (Aruba), I have some requests for all of you. Promise me…

You will take time for yourselves at least 15 minutes a day.

You will read a good book, one a month is a low ball goal.

You will spend a day, weekend, or week alone with your significant other at least once a year.

You will take family vacations, multi – generational for bonus points.

You will step outside your comfort zone.

You will appreciate what you have.

You will remember every moment.

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Five Years Us

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Today, we celebrate 5 years of…

Sharing a last name.

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Parenting a precious ‘lil girl together.

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Fighting over Duke and Clemson.

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Being extremely silly with our kiddos.

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Falling asleep while the other one is getting some screen time.

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Traveling.

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Becoming better versions of ourselves.

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Caring for each other in sickness and in health.

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And being the Mrs. & Mr. that will love each other forver, like each other for always.

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Happy 5th Anniversary, Greg!

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Chocolate For Breakfast

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Because, obviously, chocolate is the logical choice when you are around the campfire.  Why NOT chocolate for breakfast?

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Simple Health with Essential Oils

Disclaimer: I was asked to review the item or service below in exchange for compensation and/or free items. All opinions, however, are 100% my own.

Ah, the spa. When I think of a spa, I think of the calming scents of lavender and mint. A cool glass of ice water with a slice of lemon. An overall healthy, rejuvenating feeling. While we don’t have the means for a spa trip all too often, that doesn’t mean we can’t pamper ourselves on the regular.

I was introduced to essential oils last fall and was recently given a chance to test out doTerra Essential Oils to experience the pampering one can enjoy with their products. doTerra has many types of oils that can be used to help you with your health and well-being. There are different combinations that will work together to achieve emotional and physical wellness. But if you are a busy person like me, taking the time to read up on all of this can be the exact reverse effect. Goodbye day at the spa, hello stress.

When I was asked by Lauren of  Discover Natural Solutions to test out an introductory pack of doTerra Essential Oils, I figured this was a great way to learn more about the trend. (I’ll admit – I’ve been pinning oils and even bought a bunch along the way, I just honestly got lumped in the overwhelmed category and was really excited to have someone willing to tell me more on a personal level).

First, we started out the product selection by considering what things were ailing me and my family. Allergies and sleep are our two main complaints. It was clear that the introductory pack of Lavender, Peppermint, and Lemon would be a good fit.

#review of #doterra coming to the blog next week! #lilburghers

 

And she was right. Here are my top 3 favorite uses for each of the oils:

Lavender

1. Combining it with lotion for a stress-relieving hand massage (hello, mini day at the spa!)

2. Applying it to a washcloth (with cold water) to aid with sleep.

3. Applying to wrists and inhaling to ease motion sickness (pretty much a road trip essential for me now).

 

Lemon

1. Rub a drop on your wrists to elevate your mood.

2. Add into drinking water as a toxin cleanser.

3. Use with coconut oil and massage into fingernails.

 

Peppermint

1. Add to a washcloth (soaked in cool water) to help cool off.

2. Rub on stomach to ease indigestion.

3. Open up the sinuses by diffusing it or just simply opening the bottle and breathing it in.

 

Combined, the three are a relief for allergies, one of our biggest complaints in this house. Sounds like a win to me.

You can learn more about doTERRA Essential Oils and how to purchase them to help your body heal itself naturally by visiting the purchase page over on Discover Natural Solutions. Thank you for sharing these oils with my family, Lauren!

Snackeez

Disclaimer: I was asked to review the item or service below in exchange for compensation and/or free items. All opinions, however, are 100% my own.

http://snarkecards.com - My family will never go hungry as long as I don't vacuum all the french fries and goldfish crackers in my car.

Source: Snarkecards.com

Truth, yes? Anyone with kids knows that snacks are always everywhere. Our ‘lil cousin Alex recently sat in between the kids’ carseats and asked them if they could PLEASE try not to spill their cereal anymore because he was getting Cheerios stuck to his butt. It happens, kiddo. Sigh. Gone are the days of detailed cars, huh?

Or maybe not! As you may have seen on TV (I know my kids have!), there is a new product out there to help keep the snack droppings under control. Let me introduce you to Snackeez, “the all-in-one, go anywhere snacking solution!”. These cups make traveling with snacks a lot less messy. Just put your snack in the covered bowl that sits on top of 16 ounces of your favorite drink for on the go.

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Designed to keep spills at a minimum and make carrying all.the.things a lot easier on moms and dads, these cups are a win in our family. Whether it is breakfast on the go or prepping for a road trip, we’re ready with our Snackeez! We even fit a muffin in one of them!

Arianna is pretty much a pro at using her cup. She’s 5 and has no issue lifting the bowl lid to get her snacks or untwisting the cap to refill with her favorite drink (water). Evan is still getting used to lifting his lid without cereal flying everywhere, but it’s an upgrade from bowl in one hand, cup in the other. The only other downside is that ours didn’t come with a lid on the straw and Evan has pretty much bit through his (soft) straw.

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You can get your own at https://www.getsnackeez.com/ (cause my kids aren’t sharing!).

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Wheat Germ Recipes

Disclaimer: I was asked to review the item or service below in exchange for compensation and/or free items. All opinions, however, are 100% my own.

Remember the other day when I shared the benefits of wheat germ with you? Well, Kretschmer Wheat Germ was kind enough to share some recipes with me (to give you yinz). While we’re all on the “whoa, pigged out at 4th of July, time to get back in my summer shape” train (no? just me?), why not offer up some healthy options.

Black Bean, Wheat Germ and Mango Salsa

Source: Kretschmer.com

(full recipe is available here)

Ok, your mouth is watering, right? This recipe is a delicious addition to your taco nights. You take some mango, black beans, corn, and avocado…mix in the “secret ingredient” of wheat germ, and have yourself a yummy treat with a healthy boost. The recipe (above) makes 14 servings at 70 calories each…so while it’s healthy, don’t go eating the whole thing alone. Share. With me?

 

Summer Quinoa and Wheat Germ Salad

wheat germ salad

Source: Kretschmer.com

(full recipe is available here)

Whoa. Two superfoods together? Arugula? This is one of my personal heavens and would be the perfect dish for those hot summer nights when you just don’t feel like cooking anything. Have your quinoa prepped ahead of time and pop this in the fridge before work. I promise you that you’ll feel refreshed and happy with this salad.

 

Key Lime Tarts with Graham Cracker Crust

Key Lime Tarts

Source: Kretschmer.com

(full recipe is available here)

Shh. These treats may be delicious and healthy, but don’t get too addicted. They are 270 calories per saving (12 per recipe), but who doesn’t deserve some key lime goodness in their summer menu? I’ll just be indulging vicariously as you make these.

 

Thanks to Kretschmer for sending me great ideas for my summer cooking!

Happy 2014 4th of July!

Our country is 238 years old today.

We are celebrating 4th of July with friends at camp.

Happy, safe, and fun 4th to you all!

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The Awesome Wheat Germ

Disclaimer: I was asked to review the item or service below in exchange for compensation and/or free items. All opinions, however, are 100% my own.

I know you’re all about to get your 4th of July on, so please don’t be all “you’ve jumped the Shark, Becky” on me. Ever since I started to eat healthier, my eyes have been opened to some really interesting and delicious foods that have either supplemented my meals or replaced the old addictions. Recently, I was able to add wheat germ to this list of yummy foods.

Wheat Germ

Source: Kretschmer.com

Before I was contacted to check out Kretschmer Wheat Germ, I had no idea what it was. This superfood (like flax and chia) can be used as a substitute in your favorite recipes to have various impacts on your nutrition. For instance, you can use it to lower your sodium and boost your protein (two of the biggest wins for me in my journey). There’s a really handy guide here that will help you discover the choices that are best for you and your family.

Studies show that wheat germ is great for athletes, expecting moms, kids, seniors, and healthy eaters. Below are five tips that were shared with me on the overall benefits of wheat germ. Happy, healthy eating!

Top 5 Overall Tips

  1. Energy: On the go? You need to keep your body fueled, and not with empty calories. Wheat germ is a fast, easy and inexpensive way to get the nutrients you need to fuel up or recharge.  It contains B vitamins, protein, carbs and healthy fats. Spike your smoothies, yogurt or oatmeal before running out the door.
  2. Bones, teeth, and tissues: Working with calcium to build strong bones and teeth, phosphorous is necessary for the growth, maintenance and repair of all tissues. Women can especially use a boost of phosphorus to assist calcium in keeping bones strong.
  3. Immunity: Wheat germ is a good source of zinc, a mineral your body uses for hundreds of functions, such as helping wounds heal and fighting off viruses – helping you avoid that nasty cold! Each serving of Kretschmer Wheat Germ contains 10% of your recommended daily value of zinc to keep you healthy.
  4. Slimming Down: When you’re cutting calories, wheat germ helps ensure you’re not also skimping on nutrients by delivering the essential vitamins and minerals you need to stay healthy and fuller, longer. Sprinkle it on everything from cereals to soups to boost the vitamins and minerals, or use it to replace less nutrient-dense foods in cooking, like breadcrumbs.
  5. Antioxidants: Wheat germ is an excellent source of Vitamin E, a fat-soluble antioxidant that helps to protect cells and tissues from damage and may ward off certain diseases.

 

When you are looking for this product, it may be in your grocer’s cereal or baking aisle. If you are interested in this specific brand, head over to their store locator for a grocer near you.

Watch this page for great summer recipes using wheat germ! 

Entertainment Books

Disclaimer: I was asked to review the item or service below in exchange for compensation and/or free items. All opinions, however, are 100% my own.

When I think about how we are raising our kids, I have to hope they will remember all the fun we had experiencing our city. We may not always do it big, but we always do it fun.

And as I am sure most of you out there do, we do it with a coupon or membership in hand. That’s why I was excited when I was asked to check out the online version of my beloved Entertainment Book. Sure, I have some really cute bags to carry all my things in, but a thick book of deals would often go to waste because I simply didn’t want to carry the bulk around.

With digital access, you can now get your favorite coupons on your mobile device or PC. It makes saving money (and time) that much better. Who doesn’t love to save on dining, travel, and shopping?

Source: Entertainment.com Yep, there’s an app for that!

Do me a huge favor. Head over to https://www.entertainment.com/coupon/ and find the deal you would be most interested in redeeming. Leave me a comment. You never know when I might have something fun to send your way. *wink*

(This sponsored post includes the opportunity for you to win a copy of an Entertainment Book, valued at $35 and provided by entertainment.com.) 

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