Thoughts on Peter Capaldi’s debut as The Doctor

August 23rd, 2014

capaldi Via BBCAmerica.com

Peter Capaldi debuted as the 12th Doctor in Doctor Who. I couldn’t wait for this moment, to see what the new doctor would be like. Peter Capaldi is so different than the other modern day doctors, I’m so excited to see how he and Clara (who might just be my favorite companion ever,) will interact. We also met the twelfth doctor at a bit of an odd spot, he didn’t know how to fly the TARDIS?  What else did this doctor forget during regeneration?

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How to Plan a DIY Candy Buffet for Your Party

August 23rd, 2014
Psst, this is an older post from an old domain that I let expire, because I couldn’t give it the same love I give this site. I had to republish it over here though, because everyone needs to know how to set up the perfect candy buffet or candy bar! Also, I put way too much work into my daughter’s first birthday (An over the top Aliceana in One-derland theme) and I would love to share that with my favorite readers, that’s you!

Candy Buffets (or Candy Bars, I avoid the term Candy Bar as everyone thinks I’m referring to chocolate bars) have become a very popular trend at weddings and parties.
Personally, I love candy buffets. It’s a really fun way to add decor to your space, give your guests a nice treat, and it gives off the feeling of nostalgia. At a candy buffet you’re like a kid in a candy store, and everyone can appreciate that feeling.
Candy buffets are not the easiest thing to pull together though, there’s lots of planning that comes with a candy buffet. So I created a list of everything you need to consider when planning a candy buffet!
Here are the top 7 things you need to consider to pull off a candy buffet!
 
I’ll be using my “One-derland” candy buffet as an example, as it was a small and simple candy buffet to pull off. You can make your own buffet as elaborate as you’d like, and I’ll show you how in this little tutorial.

Pick a theme
First, decide if you want your candy buffet to fit a theme. This could be as simple as a color scheme, or maybe you want it to go with your party theme. Your theme is the central concept for your entire candy buffet, spend some time envisioning how you want the final product to look and stick with it.
Here my theme was Alice in Wonderland, it was as simple as adding tags with “Eat Me.” as you saw in the Alice in Wonderland movies and books. I also added touches that represented that we were at a tea party and a little cameo from The Queen of Hearts.

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Target Wedding (+ Flash giveaway!)

August 22nd, 2014

Content and/or other value provided by our partner, Target. All opinions are my own. #TargetWedding #Sponsored


It’s still wedding season, and of course wedding bells aren’t ringing here. AJ and I have been married for 3 years already (I can’t believe it’s been that long, it feels like yesterday!) We did get a chance to go on a little vacation this Summer. Ok, ok…it was a business trip, but we still had a great time and took a few days to ourselves.

The Target Wedding registry includes great items for adventurous, and romantic trips. On our trip we visited Carmel, California for a whimsical evening. We visited beautiful little shops, had a lovely fireside dinner, and loved listening to the ocean waves crashing and being able to take in the scent of the salty ocean from our hotel windows. The next day we drove down highway 1 in a Mustang and stopped at a gorgeous sandy beach, only to see dolphins playing in the ocean.

dolphins

We didn’t bring our fancy DSLR camera with on the trip, but we really could have used a  Canon EOS Rebel T5I (an item that you can add on your Target registry.) We didn’t get that great of pictures using our phones, and the photos make it look like the dolphins are so much further away than they were. So you should definitely register for a nice camera, it comes in handy when you start a family as well. You can capture the endless amount of baby photos with a high quality camera like the Canon EOS Rebel T5I.

 

I’m giving away a $25 Target gift card to one of my lucky readers!

Make sure to check out the Target Wedding registry! It was where we registered over 3 years ago, and we loved our Target gifts and still use them today!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Easy Homemade Blueberry Pie Recipe

August 21st, 2014

Can you believe that I have never tasted a slice of blueberry pie, let alone an easy homemade blueberry pie? Blueberries were on sale, and well, doesn’t that always mean it’s time to try a new recipe?

I did some digging and found our family recipe for blueberry pie. I was a little unsure if cinnamon should really be used a an ingredient in this pie, but it was amazing. Cinnamon and warm blueberries is the perfect flavor combination.

homemade blueberry pie

I have to say, for this being my very first blueberry pie. It was delicious.

homemade blueberry pie with crust recipe

Since we’re talking about firsts, this was my first time taking my four ingredient flaky pie crust and making it into a pretty lattice weave! That was way easier than I thought it would be, and it turned out so pretty. It would have looked a little better if I had cut the strips into equal sized strips, but eh, my guesstimations gave it character, right?

easy homemade pie recipe
We served this easy homemade blueberry pie with scoops of frozen custard. We each enjoyed a piece of pie while watching a Doctor Who episode. AJ is getting closer to being caught up, we already said goodbye to David Tennant as The Doctor and we’ve moved onto Matt Smith. I’m pretty sure we both cried. At least I know I did. A lot.

If you find yourself with spare blueberries you should probably whip up this pie. Actually, no, scratch that. Go to the store now, buy these ingredients, tie on your Tardis apron (everyone has one of those, right?) and get to baking!


Easy Homemade Blueberry Pie

8 servings

Ingredients

  • 2 pie crusts (link to recipe below)
  • 3/4 Cup Sugar
  • 3 Tablespoons Cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 4 cups blueberries

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. Sprinkle sugar, cornstarch, salt, and cinnamon on top of blueberries and stir.
  3. Roll out first pie crust on a floured surface, using a pizza cutter cut into 1/2 inch strips
  4. Place second whole pie crust in a pie pan.
  5. Add blueberry filling.
  6. Weave your crust into a lattice design, or simply overlap
  7. Place 1 pie crust in a pie dish
  8. Bake for 20 minutes at 425°. Reduce heat to 350°F and bake for 30 to 40 minutes more or until juices are bubbling and have thickened.
  9. Let cool before serving.

Remember to use my four ingredient flaky pie crust to make this recipe taste the best!

A Peek at Netflix HQ and Meeting Piper Kerman

August 20th, 2014

I’m a part of the Netflix #StreamTeam, this post is part of a sponsored conversation. All opinions are my own.

Last month, AJ and I got to tour Netflix Headquarters (along with other StreamTeam members.) After touring Nteflix HQ, I think I’ve found my dream job. It’s a little bit like pop culture exploded in this building. You can find fun things in almost every cubical (I saw a Dalek poking his head out of one, I walked off before it could say “Exterminate! Exterminate!” I was wearing a Tardis dress afterall.) Get ready to see lots of pictures, this post is ful of them!

This is a station in the middle of an office. Full of game consoles and TVs. How fun is that?

Netflix work station
It’s such a fun environment at Netflix. I loved this wall, it’s fun trying to find your favorite show titles. I found quite a few of my favorites!

netflix wall
All of the rooms are named after TV shows, it was such a great touch. We all roamed around looking for our favorite shows and movies. Here’s Shaun of the Dead.

Netflix Shaun of The Dead

Here’s the Sex and the City room. the other ladies were on the other windows, but who doesn’t love a giant Charlotte?

Netflix Sex in the City
Even the bathrooms are fun. No Men/Women signs here! Instead you choose whether you’re a Marge…

netflix marge
Or are you a Homer?

Netflix homer

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Trio AXS Tablet Plus T-Mobile FREE Data for Life

August 20th, 2014

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #TabletTrio #CollectiveBias

Free data for life #TabletTrio #CollectiveBias #shop

I’m here to tell you all about the Trio AXS Tablet plus T-Mobile FREE data for life. Tablets were the weirdest idea when the first was revealed. I definitely didn’t think I would ever be on-board the tablet trend. Fast forward to now…and I’ve purchased 4 different tablets (don’t worry, they weren’t all for me.) I couldn’t survive without my tablet. Tablets are the perfect easy to use way to work on business projects quickly without having to rush to your office.

Ok, and let’s face it. Tablets are also extremely fun. I’m always streaming Netflix, playing video games, watching viral videos, and browsing Facebook to see who’s dating who (raise your hand if you sometimes live vicariously through your friends. I’m so glad I’m no longer part of the dating game, but hey, it’s so much fun to hear all of the stories!)

If you’re new to tablets, I can definitely recommend the Trio AXS. I think it’s a fantastic tablet for it’s price (Only $179 at Walmart and Walmart.com.) The best part about this tablet, is that Walmart and T-Mobile have teamed up to bring you Free Data for life! You’ll receive 200MB of data per month, for the life of your tablet, for FREE! Now that $179 price tag is looking pretty appealing, right?

#TabletTrio #CollectiveBias

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Our Travels to California Bay Area

August 18th, 2014

We’ve been back from the California Bay Area for a couple of weeks and I’ve really been dragging my feet on writing all about the trip. We loved it so much, we keep telling each other that we should move out there. AJ wants a house in Carmel-by-the-Sea, but I personally would love a place in San Francisco. We were only there for 7 days, but I feel like we saw a huge chunk of the California Bay Area. I’ll try not to talk too much about all the restaurants we enjoyed, because that can be a post in itself (and it will be soon, I promise!) Our trip took us to San Francisco, San Jose, Carmel-by-the-Sea, and back to San Francisco.

When we arrived in California we stayed at the Marriot Marquis for the first two nights. The first night we had no plan, so we wandered around the city and took it all in.  I described it as a mixture of Chicago’s Magnificent Mile and Madison, Wisconsin’s hipster filled State Street. We found a ridiculously big Nordstrom (I can’t remember how many levels it was, I’m pretty sure it was never ending.) Then it was time to look for food.

We ended up at 3 restaurants that night. The first was a brew pub that only served tapas, we were starving after the exhausting plane ride, so we grabbed some drinks and went on to the next place. We found an awesome Mexican restaurant for dinner. Then we enjoyed drinks and dessert at The View on top of our hotel, the Marriot Marquis. The Sunset views of San Francisco were gorgeous.

The VIew Marriot MArquis
The next day I was a panelist at an event, so AJ and I parted ways for a while. I had met some other amazing bloggers (Jen and Kelly from Makobi Scribe and Lisa from Mom on the Side) at the event and we all decided to head to Chinatown after, we found AJ and headed over.

Chinatown San Francisco

Chinatown isn’t exactly what we expected, it was mostly a lot of shops selling trinkets and souvenirs. I’m glad we got to see it though! We bought a few souvenirs for Aliceana, and I might have bought a plush Buu from Dragon Ball Z, when in Chinatown…buy anime plush? right? He’s currently sitting in my office while I write this. We also picked up a little trolley (we didn’t realize it was a magnet until we got home) a pair of chopsticks, and a cat that waves non-stop. It’s in our kitchen and Aliceana always pauses to wave and say “Hi kitty!”

chinatown trinkets
AJ and I went out to dinner at a brew pub, I loved the walk. We ended up walking through a really pretty park with some dogs and kids playing in it. On the way back from the restaurant a guy in an 80′s hair metal Tee saw AJ’s beard and said “Rock on dude.” Those moments always make me laugh, it’s like he’s in a secret bearded society and gets major respect from strangers. It’s always funny when he meets a fellow bearded man and they just give this little nod of approval.

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Vaccinations without tears. (Tips for getting through those dreaded shots.) Shot@Life

August 18th, 2014

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GiveaShot #CollectiveBias

It’s that time of the year, Summer is slowly creeping to an end and the School Year will be here before you know it. I don’t know about you, but I think that this Summer went way too fast! I’m trying to cram as many Summer activities into August as possible. Recently, AJ built Aliceana a tire swing and I got her a sand box t make our backyard fun on days we can’t get out of the house to soak up the last of Summer.

aliceana tire swing

Maybe those of you with school aged kids (Aliceana has a couple years yet) disagree and you might be anticipating Summer ending. You’re over the “I’m bored” comments, and running out of things for your kids to do. You’re probably the parent who also has a pretty big to-do list before school starts. If you have a child at the age of 7 or older, one of those items that I can help you check off your list is immunizations. Did you know your child can be given immunizations at your local Walgreens as part of their Shot@Life initiative?

Is your child afraid of shots? Aliceana was always so great at the doctor, she was in and out of hospitals her first year to see specialists and she loved her doctors and nurses, but now she’s absolutely terrified. I hate that she’s too young to understand what’s happening and why she needs immunizations. Here are some tips to get your children through those shots.

vaccinations without tears tips for getting through shots

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The Swiffer Effect. How Swiffer Makes Life Easier.

August 17th, 2014



In my spare time…I should probably rephrase that…on night’s that I should definitely be writing blog posts, I find myself vegging on the couch catching up with the Real Housewives of Someplace, or some equally dramatic show. Sometime’s I actually see commercials (ie. when the remote is too far away, or I’m actually watching live T.V.)

One of my favorite commercials are those Swiffer Big Green Box commercials. I always think to myself, what do I have to do to get one of those big green boxes? I love Swiffer products and that’s a seriously awesome box full of goodies!

Well, I got one! (Actually, I received two, but we’ll get to that later.) I would have shared a picture of the beautiful green box of Swiffer goodness on our doorstep, but we’re in the middle of painting our house exterior so the front of our house and porch looks like an absolute disaster.

My Big Green box came with a Swiffer Sweeper, Wet Mopping Refills, Dry Cloth Refills (Febreze scented!) Swiffer Duster Kit, and Swiffer Duster Refills (Gain Scent.)

Swiffer Green Box

As a busy mom with a toddler, two dogs, and a husband who always forgets to take off muddy boots, I’m in love with all things Swiffer. I love having the Swiffer Sweeper with dry and wet cloths for the little messes, and I also have a Swiffer Wet Jet in my arsenal for those bigger messes.

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Coffee-mate and David Bromstad make a splash!

August 17th, 2014

It’s Sunday morning and that means it’s time for a coffee date. Of course by coffee date I mean your freshly brewed cup of coffee paired with your favorite Coffee-mate creamer. Coffee is much more than a drink, it’s basically a way of life.

I’ve been drinking coffee since I was in Junior High (if you count those terrible gas station cappuccinos as coffee,) then I moved my way to the big coffee chains. My first ever paycheck I bought a coffee maker, coffee filters, and coffee (ok, I’ll admit I also bought Fall Out Boy’s latest CD.) So coffee is definitely a way of life. When Aliceana was a newborn coffee was a lifeline, it got us through every morning even after those sleepless nights. AJ got so good at mixing the perfect amount of Coffee-mate French Vanilla and sugar, I always told him that he should quit his job and be a barista. Although it’s not that hard to make coffee paired with Coffee-mate to taste a like pure bliss.

If coffee is a way of life for you, you know that your morning starts the second you smell that wonderful scent of fresh brewed coffee. Now your morning routine and coffee creamer just became prettier.
Coffee-mate

Design star David Bromstad has partnered with Coffee-mate and Target, making a splash with limited edition bottle designs inspired by coffee and Coffee-mate. The new David Bromstad designed bottles (French Vanilla and Hazelnut flavors) will be available exclusively at Target stores nationwide.

One lucky winner will receive, 5 mini journals, a pack of colorful pens, a coffee poster and 2 full-value Coffee-mate coupons ($45 ARV).
coffee-mate prize a Rafflecopter giveaway

For more inspired fun, snap a photo of the newly designed bottles and share it on Facebook with the hashtag #CMInspiresSweepsEntry for a chance to win a year’s worth of Coffee-mate, $500 Target GiftCards, and a signed print from David Bromstad!

Which Coffee-mate flavor is your favorite?

coffee-mate david bromstad

(We love the classic French Vanilla!)

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

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