Sunday, October 30, 2011

Sunset Sunday-Fire in the sky

I don't believe I ever shared these photos on my blog. Back when we lived in California the kids and I were at my parents house and for some reason or another my I walked outside and all I could see was red. As I run/walk out to the backyard my sister comes running out with me. We were like little kids in a candy store with our cameras. 
We must have spent forty-five minutes out there just snapping away. It was fun being out there just my sister and I taking pictures and goofing off making each other laugh. Fun times right there and now a good memory.

Craig from Stay Adventurous and I have teamed up to help spread the joy of Sunset Sunday's.
If you have a photo you'd like to share we'd love for you to link up so we can visit you and spread some Sunset Sunday love!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Mediterranean Wrap Recipe

When we first moved here my father in law introduced us to Jasons Deli. Me being the lover of all things food, was instantly in love. If you've never eaten there they are not like a traditional deli. They are mainly a sandwich and wrap restaurant but they also have soup, pasta dishes and a great salad bar. One thing the kids enjoy about eating there is they do have a deli counter where they make your food,  so they enjoy watching that aspect of the restaurant. FYI they have the absolute best broccoli cheese soup I have ever had. 

When we eat there I usually get the Mediterranean Wrap. I loved the idea that instead of mayo or mustard or dressings being used in it's place was hummus. And the combination of the vegetables, meat & hummus was delish. So what does one do when they find a dish they love? Recreate it of course. 

Shanamama's Mediterranean Wrap

Wrap (you can use flavor you'd like, I just chose the original light)
Turkey or chicken lunch meat
Bell Pepper
Green olives
Kalamata olives
Lettuce blend (I like to mix it up between sweet baby green & bold baby greens)
Roasted red pepper hummus

Chop all your veggies except the lettuce. I like mine pretty thin so I can layer them and still be able to close the wrap.

Spread on a thin (or thick if you want more flavor or just love hummus) layer of hummus onto the wrap

Next layer on your vegetable. I do the olives on the bottom so they don't roll out while eating the wrap

Now it's time to put your lunch meat on. If it's cut rather thin I would use about 6-8 pieces. For thicker cuts use about half that. My favorite part, the lettuce. Pile that on thick. You can never have to much lettuce.


And that's it. Roll it up and chow down. I made the one pictured below for my husband so it's a bit thicker so I had to stick it with a few tooth picks to keep it shut. 

Also, they store well in the fridge for a few hours if you make your lunches in the morning.

*I was not asked to write this post, I was simply inspired by a dish I loved & felt compelled to try my hand at recreating it. Additionally I was not compensated in any way for writing this post, although if Jasons Deli were to offer me a years supply of Broccoli Cheese soup I do not think I could turn them down.*

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wordless Wednesday-Possbile Halloween decoration

Seeing as Halloween is only five days away I figured this picture would be appropriate. Especially since this spider was freakishly huge and it scared the shiznit out of me. Does make for a good all natural Halloween decoration though huh?

For more inspiring photos be sure to check out:
The Bonafide Life, Better in Bulk, From Dates to Diapers, Not Your Momblog, The Divine Miss Mommy, Colorado Moms, Rajean Blomquist, High Impact Mom, BrainFoggles, The Centsible Life, Rachel Ferrucci, Lil Kid Things, Resourceful Mommy and Zensible Mama and don't forget to link your own photo stories.

Don't forget to link up your Wordless Wednesday post!

Udi's Gluten Free foods review

Who knew gluten free could be so tasty? 

Um not me. I know many people who follow a gluten free diet and not once have I heard any of them complain when it comes to flavor. But I am a skeptic. I know, I know, but I can't help it. While I do appreciate everyone's opinions and quite often I am the one asking for them because I like to hear what people have to say, I still I like to try things on my own and go from there. 

Over the last few months I have heard a lot about Udi's. I have also seen a few reviews on them, read them word for word. I was intrigued. You see my daughter has a lot of allergies and eczema. Her major allergy is peanuts. It is life threatening and not something to take lightly. She has low level allergies to wheat, eggs, milk, soy, peas and other things. Since discovering her allergies I have been wondering just how well a gluten free diet would benefit her. I spoke to a few Dr's and they said "with her low levels it probably wouldn't make much of a difference & a change to her diet isn't necessary".  So I either go with a medical professionals or go with my gut. Yeah I'm going to choose the later.

So naturally when I was asked if I would like to try some Udi's cookies I said yes. I mean who doesn't like cookies and it would give my family the chance to try something gluten free. Two stone. Win win.

Chocolate chip, Oatmeal Raisin & Snickerdoodles...oh my!

To say these cookies were good would be an understatement. They were delicious, soft, full of flavor and melt in your mouth good. If you're like me and have to try for yourself then go get some. You will not regret it. And at only $5.00 a box they're pretty reasonable.

Udi's does more then just cookies though. They have a full line of products to cater to those who live a gluten free lifestyle such as bagels, breads, buns, granola and more.

This right here, that picture, that is what makes these cookies a new favorite in our house. Seeing my baby girl enjoying a cookie and not having to worry if there are nuts in them. I can't tell you how many times she has come home from school saying that her class had cookies but she couldn't have any because there were nuts in them. Finding a store out here that carries Udi's products is next on my list so I can bring some to her school for her teacher to store on the days someone brings in something containing nuts.

*I was provided samples of Udi's cookies for review. I was not compensated for this review. All opinions stated above are solely my own.*

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Stream of Consciousness Sunday-Randomness

It's time for Stream of Consciousness Sunday hosted by All things Fadra


Dude my youngest who is three has been in underwear all day & hasn't had an accident once! :::knock on wood::: Do you know how much money we would save just by cutting out day time diapers??? Right now he is in diapers 24/7, my daughter is in diapers at night and my oldest is in pull ups at night. We spend 40 bucks on diapers and those last about 3-4 weeks. Pull ups are 20 bucks and those last a month. So that at least 60 dollars a month we could be saving. Color me excited.

On another note my parents will be flying out next month for a visit. My mom has been out here once already but my Dad has not. I am so excited for them to be here. I know my kids miss him and he misses them more then he will ever admit but once they see each other it will be awesome. Although I am a tad worried at what were going to do once they're here because my Dad is not the sit around and relax/do nothing kind of person. Oh well I know it will all work out. 

I have also come to the realization I am in a cooking rut. I only cook chicken and finding new ways to make chicken every single night is a tad boring. Okay not just a tad, it is extremely boring at times. Anyone have any tried and true recipes they would like to share? I'd love to hear/see them. I did make a dish of Ree Drummonds the other day. To say it was good would be a serious understatement. It was the friggin BOMB. Saved that to the recipe memory bank of family faves. I love finding recipes that everyone enjoys. 

Don't know how it works? It's simple just follow these steps:
  • Set a timer and write for 5 minutes only.
  • Write an intro to the post if you want but don’t edit the post. No proofreading or spellchecking. This is writing in the raw.
  • Publish it somewhere. Anywhere. The back door to your blog if you want. But make it accessible.
  • Add the Stream of Consciousness Sunday badge to your post.
  • Link up your post below.
  • Visit your fellow bloggers and show some love.
And when your done be sure to head over to All things Fadra & link up!


Sunset Sunday-Shine down

Last night we were under a severe thunderstorm watch. Me being the photoholic that I am stood outside waiting for the storms to hit. While they weren't nearly as strong as predicted it did make for some great sunset shots. 

Here are two pictures I captured. One looking at the sunset just as the sun started to go down and one looking in the opposite direction. The neat part about looking in the opposite direction is that the colors reflected from the sunset and made for a neat photo.

Have a photo you'd like to share? Feel free to link up so we can spread some Sunset Sunday love around!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Picaboo 2011 Holiday Cards

It's that time of the year again, Holiday card time!
It seems that every year I plan on doing cards and I usually forget about it and end up doing it at the last minute if I even do them at all. But not this year. I am going to plan ahead. The weather is now starting to cool down so I want to get my family pictures done before it's too cold to even sit outside for a mere twenty minutes. 
Picaboo recently released their 2011 Holiday Collection and I am having a bit of trouble deciding which card to use because so many of them are beautiful. I like to go for the more elegant and contemporary look and in the past I have had troubles even finding a card I like, but now for the first time, I have not run into that problem.

My family is Jewish while my husbands family is Christian so I also need to decide if I should stick to Seasons/Holiday Greetings or split it and do half Happy Hanukkah and half Merry Christmas.

Picaboo has outdone themselves and come up with one of the most amazing lines of Holiday Cards that I have seen in a long time. 
They offer the following types of paper for your cards:
  • Signature Stationery
  • Classic Cardstock
  • Premium Cardstock
  • Photo Paper Matte
  • Photo Paper Glossy
You can choose from a flat 5x7 in portrait or landscape print all one sided or
 a folded 5x7 in portrait or landscape as a three-sided card.

And I have some great news for you, Picaboo has been kind enough to offer my readers up to 50 FREE Holiday Cards by using the code GREAT-SD The code is good for 25 free cards but you can use it twice to get 50 so if you  buy 25 cards, you will get 25 free cards OR buy 50 cards and get 50 cards free. This can be used two times by each registered user. Shipping is not included. If you have a large family or send out over 100 cards each year this is a great deal!

*I was compensated for this post but all opinions are 100% mine.*

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Wordless Wednesday-Good morning sunshine

It's a good things it's still early because I thought today was Tuesday & if Amanda hadn't posted her Wordless Wednesday post I would have gone all day thinking it was the wrong day. So thank you Amanda for reminding me of the correct day ;) 

Now onto the wordless part.

One of the great things about getting up at the ass crack of dawn wee hours of the morning is getting to see the sunrise almost every morning.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Sunset Sunday-It's back!

I am so glad to say that Sunset Sundays is back! I apologize for the sudden lack of posting Sunset Sunday but I had a few things to work out. Now everything is squared away and we are back in full swing, well every Sunday that is. 

These were taken a few weeks ago. I walked outside & immediately ran back into the house to grab my camera. The colors were so vibrant it was truly amazing. I am lucky I just happened to walk outside when I did because five minutes later it was gone. Not even a pale pink to the sky.

If you have any sunset pictures and would like to participate in Sunset Sunday I would love to show some love so please don't forget to link up below.

Stream of Consciousness Sunday-My husband


I wrote this post while participating in Fadra's Stream of Consciousness Sunday
Been wanting to participate for a while but I kept forgetting. So here it is my first post. 

My husband works out of state. blah

I have a love hate relationship with this. Love because he is employed (obviously). Hate because he is so far away. What worries me the most about this is what if something happens and we need him? How fast will he be able to get to us? He works three hours away (flying time) and if something were to happen and we needed him home ASAP it would be a three hour ASAP and quite honestly I don't like that. Nope not one bit.

The other thing that sucks about this is getting him home. Despite popular belief that just because you work for an airline you can always get on a flight, he goes through almost weekly having to worry about not getting on a flight. The other part of this is sometimes I have to drive 2-3 hours just to go get him. Not complaining, not complaining but it does suck.

But the only other option is to have him look for a new job which is not in the cards. His company has always been good to him and he is not one to jump ship just because. He is loyal. Again this bugs me but at the same time makes me proud of him. He is not one to take the easy route. Hence us picking up and moving far far away so he can attend college at the young age of 34.

He is always cracking jokes that he is the oldest person at the school but as luck would have it we usually see someone his senior walking by not long after he cracks a joke about his age. 

So in short, my husband rocks for doing what he is doing not only for himself but for his family (that would be us). Yeah it's hard and stressful on both of us BUT he is accomplishing his dream and for that he is the awesome!

Oh and he started a blog which makes me giggle because he's never been on the understanding side of why I blog. Go figure one of his teachers loves his writing and suggests he starts a blog and he does. Now if I could only find it I could share. Maybe another day.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Wordless Wednesday-Flowers a bloomin

I may not have a green thumb but I somehow managed to keep these roses alive in our front yard.

And these gorgeous flowers are from my neighbors yard. I have no idea what they are but the colors were so vibrant I couldn't resist taking a picture of them.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Take time to relax with Cerra


I can probably speak for many moms out there when I say I rarely take time for myself. I'm not talking some time here or there to run errands alone. I mean actually taking me time to relax and reflect.  So when SheSpeaks announced they were going to be working with Cerra, a new website dedicated to helping people get those moments back and take time for themselves, it had me very intrigued.

What is Cerra and how can they help me get some me time?

Cerra is all about teaching others to be aware, act and reflect. When you are aware of your thoughts and feelings you can act appropriately with thoughtful intentions and you can reflect on your experiences with positivity. In order to get in the habit of being aware, acting and reflecting they introduced the Seven Intentions.

1. Grounded
2. Creative Energy
3. Gratitude
4. Loving Kindness
5. Courage
6. Wisdom
7. Inspiration

They touch on the universal virtues by using your senses. Cerra offers a variety of items in their boutique to help you getting into the new ritual like tea's, sensory oils, dissolving notes (which are great in letting go of negative feelings/energy), music, candles, a journal for you to keep notes throughout your day or week and more.

This short video will help give you an idea of what Cerra is about.

They even have this great feature on their page where you can type how you are feeling at that moment and they will give you some recommendations on ways to become more balanced. For example I headed on over there and typed in stressed because what person isn't stressed at one point in their life. After hitting submit three recommendations popped up.

1. Three deep breaths - "Your breath is a powerful force. Just as it carries essential oxygen into the body, an intentional breath can bring your awareness to the moment as it helps you feel GROUNDED in a secure place."
2. Sensory oil Grounded - "The Grounded Sensory Oil helps create balance in your life. By engaging your sense of smell, you can start to become more aware of your feelings and your ability to shift your moods."
3. Something from the Seven Intentions: Grounded - "I am becoming more deeply grounded. My roots are strong and are connecting me to my source of security."

I have to tell you that something as little as stopping for a minute during your busy day to recite one of the seven intentions along with smelling the sensory oil is very calming and it really does help. I am the type of person that tends to be a walking stress ball. A lot of little things get to me and I just let it build which ends up with me being exhausted emotionally and physically. By stopping and doing the deep breathing along with the oil and reciting one of the Seven Intentions has helped me tremendously. It forces me to stop and look at what is going on in this moment and realize it's not worth getting upset over. This is usually when I use a dissolving note. I write whatever I had been thinking about that was negative and let it go. It's calming and relieving at the same time.

One thing I really enjoy about being a member of Cerra is the reminder emails. Don't worry they aren't annoying or pushy. You get an email once a week with a little reminder to make time for yourself so you can get your "Me Moment". They have tips on different ways to achieve it and for someone like myself this is exactly what I need. A friendly reminder that hey, take a moment and just be.

Overall I am in LOVE with Cerra. I think the site is amazing, with all the tips they offer, the boutique and the community. It is an all around wonderful site for those looking to achieve inner piece and tranquility. 

*I wrote this post while participating in a SheSpeaks campaign. I was not compensated for this post although I did receive samples from Cerra. All opinions expressed in this post are solely my own*