Snow White Launched the Walt Disney Signature Collection #SnowWhite

Snow White Launched the Walt Disney Signature Collection

Snow White was the only Disney Princess movie I hadn’t seen, at least I don’t remember seeing it before.  I know the story very well but I just never recalled seeing the movie before.  Disney Home Entertainment recently launched the Walt Disney Signature Collection and of course they started with the princess that started it all Snow White.  The Disney Digital version was released on January 19th, and Blu-Ray on February 2nd.  We received a digital code of Snow White for review purposes, any opinions expressed are my own.

About Snow White – Walt Disney Signature Collection

Forever enchanting and inspiring, Snow White And The Seven Dwarfs embodies The Walt Disney Signature Collection’s legacy of animation.  In this epic story of love and friendship, the kind and beautiful princess Snow White wins the hearts of the Seven Dwarfs and triumphs over the evil plans of a wicked Queen.  Share the movie called “The Greatest Animated Film Of All Time,” (American Film Institute) in High Definition Blu-ray and for the first time ever on Digital HD, with special features for the entire family!

Blu-ray & Digital*     

Bonus Features:         

  • In Walt’s Words: Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs – For the first time ever, hear Walt himself talk about Snow White. 
  • Iconography – Explore how this film influences pop culture, art, and fashion.
  • @DisneyAnimation: Designing Disney’s First Princess – Modern day Disney artists discuss the design of Snow White and how it influenced the look of some of your favorite Disney characters.
  •  The Fairest Facts of Them All: 7 Facts You May Now Know About Snow White – Disney Channel star Sofia Carson reveals seven intriguing facts about Snow White.
  • Snow White in Seventy Seconds – Rap along with this hip reimagining of the story.
  • Alternate Sequence: The Prince Meets Snow White – A never–before-seen story board sequence where the Prince meets Snow White.

*Digital bonus offerings may vary by retailer

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My Thoughts:

When out code arrived my daughter couldn’t wait to see this movie.  We input it into our Disney Movies Anywhere account and was ready to go.  While this movie is a classic the remastered you can still enjoy the classic animation.  You don’t see this kind of animation anymore and it was absolutely beautiful.  My kids had lots of questions about the characters because they haven’t seen much movies with older animation.  The music was beautiful and enchanting.  It was everything we dreamed this movie would be.  If you haven’t added Snow White to your collection this is a great opportunity to add this before it’s added back into the vault.

There are also great bonus features that come with the movie as well.  I loved the feature on about the influence this movie has had on pop culture.  It’s truly an iconic movie that could easily be show now or one hundred years from now and still be loved.  That it has inspired so many women to find their prince and be a princess.

Disney had a few of their Disney artists create their own modern interpretations of the Seven Dwarfs.  You can check them out in the slideshow above.

Get Social with Snow White:  https://www.facebook.com/DisneySnowWhite – #SnowWhite

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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DreamWorks Valentine’s Day Printables

DreamWorks Valentine’s Day Printables

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and if you’re looking for some fun printables for your children to exchange with their cousins, friends, and classmates, the folks at DreamWorks has come great ones.

Spread some love this weekend with DreamWorks Valentine’s Day Cards featuring your favorite characters fromDinotrux, The Mr. Peabody & Sherman Show and Dragons: Race to the Edge. Ty Rux, Revvit, Skya, Hiccup, Toothless, Astrid, Mr. Peabody and Sherman are here to help you let your friends know how dino-mite and pawsome they are!

Season 2 of Dragons: Race to the Edge is currently available on Netflix. Dinotrux Season 2 premieres on March 11 andThe Mr. Peabody & Sherman Show Season 2 launches on March 18.

About Dinotrux

Welcome to a world of giant creatures that are half dinosaur, half construction vehicle and all awesome in DREAMWORKS DINOTRUX! Meet Ty Rux, a massive Tyrannosaurus Trux, and his best friend Revvit, a razor-sharp Reptool.  Together, the Dinotrux and Reptools join forces for the first time ever to build a bigger, better world and battle back against the biggest and baddest of them all: D-Structs, who threatens to wreck everything they’ve built.

About Dragons: Race to the Edge

Dragons: Race to the Edge tells the action-laiden story of what happens before How to Train Your Dragon 2, as Hiccup and Toothless explore an amazing world that they always imagined, but never knew, existed beyond the borders of Berk.

About The Mr. Peabody & Sherman Show

Mr. Peabody, the smartest dog in the world, and his boy Sherman host a zany late-night comedy show broadcast from their swanky penthouse in front of a live studio audience.  Anything can happen in this show jam-packed with exciting segments, great musical acts and very special guests like outrageous neighbors and hilarious time travelers they meet with the WABAC machine!

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Wedding Wednesday: Unforgettable Wedding Gifts from Society6

Wedding Wednesday: Unforgettable Wedding Gifts from Society6

I’ve slacked on my Wedding Wednesday posts, so this week I wanted to share some special items with you.  I was contacted by Society6 about placement in my Valentine’s Day Gift Guide.  I hopped on their website and I immediately knew I wanted to feature them on my blog, the hard part was finding the right item.  After about an hour on the site I decided on the Duvet Covers.  Society6 provided me with a coupon code to buy my Duvet Cover, and include in my guide.  Any opinions expressed are my own.

society6-logo

Society6 features original artwork from artist all around the world.  Products are made from the highest quality of products and are sold and shipped to you on behalf of the artist.  Society6 allows artist to sell art studio quality prints, cell-phone cases, tote bags, and more without giving up control.

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When I was looking for a duvet cover for our bed.  I started to search the duvet section and found a this cover called Botanic Wars by Josh Ln on the first page.  I was drawn to it design but I continued searching looking for more designs that I loved.  I ended up finding great options but I was still really wanted to get this one for us.  After an hour going through different designs I ended up where I started with Botanic Wars.  Ordering was a breeze and Society6 kept me updated through the entire ordering process through to shipping of the cover.  It arrived to my house in about a week or so.

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I loved how Josh included the elements of Star Wars throughout the duvet cover, along with the floral prints.  It was a perfect match for my husband and I.  We both got something we love.

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Sole Society (4)

To get your old duvet in, just unzip along the side of the duvet and put your old duvet inside the case and just like that it’s refreshed and like brand new again.  Duvet covers are just one of the things I discovered on Society6.  Here’s some other great products that would make fantastic wedding gifts.

Wall Tapestry

Wall Tapestries are great for decorating and adding some flair to a home.  This one is the Lights, but there are lots of other great selections to fit anyone’s taste.

Throw Pillows can be used to decorate various spaces, this one in Botanical Wars would be a great addition to the duvet I shared above.  You can create a personalized bedding set for the newly weds.

Rectangle Pillows are new at Society6 but they also make great gifts as well for decorating and adding style to your home.  I like them because they look a little bigger than the regular square pillow and they are different.

This Wall Clock is absolutely beautiful.  It’s the perfect reminder to see the world and it’s another great gift idea.  I would love to see this on my wall.

I’m a huge fan of Canvas Prints, most of ours are of our family but there are some amazing paintings on the Society6 website.  This is called Intimacy on Display and it’s the perfect way for new couples to show the world they love each other.

Visit the Society6 website for more gift ideas for the home, and the new couple.  Also be sure to check them out on Facebook and Twitter as well.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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You’re the One That I Want Book Review

You’re the One That I Want Book Review

About two years ago I read my first Susan May Warren book it was the first book in the Christiansen Family series.  I was immediately drawn into that book.  The story was one that I could relate to on so many levels and I read the entire book in two days.  I didn’t want to stop to reading at all.  I haven’t read the other books in the series but when I saw the newest book You’re The One That I Want, I knew I wanted to read this book.  One thing I love is that I didn’t have to read the other books to read this one.

Susan May Warren was a genius to tackle this series and highlight each of the siblings.  Each one with their own story/book, but she doesn’t neglect the rest of the family while digging deep into each of the siblings stories.  I’ll have to go back and read all the other books because I feel weird starting and finishing with book one and book six but not reading the other in between.  This story starts off with Owen being away for his family and all the familiarity of Deep Haven.  Owen’s story is one of forgiveness, redemption, love and acceptance.  There are so many wonderful elements in this book that it just draws you in for the long haul.  I really love that Warren’s books always include an element of God but it’s not overwhelming, it’s very subtle but powerful.

This is the final book in the series and I can’t wait to see what Warren does next, but this seemed like a great end to what fans say is an amazing series.  If you haven’t picked up these books I would highly recommend it and start from the beginning.  You’ll love these characters and feel like they are family just like your own.  You’ll get angry, happy, sad, and so many other emotions right along with them because Warren penned real characters that we all can relate to.  They make mistakes, have trouble with life, and find the light at the end of the tunnel time and time again.  It was great seeing how some of the characters had progressed from when I read the first book.  Reading this one really reminded me of how much I loved the first book and what probably missed by not reading any of the others in this series.  If you’re looking for a good series to start this one won’t disappoint at all.

About You’re the One I Want:

Owen Christiansen has been in a downward spiral since an injury ended his NHL career. But a job on an Alaskan crabbing boat offers a fresh start . . . maybe even a shot at romance with Elise “Scotty” McFlynn, the captain’s daughter.

Used to being one of the guys, to never relying on anyone, Scotty doesn’t believe in happily ever after—especially with someone like Owen. Her instinct is confirmed when Casper Christiansen arrives to drag his prodigal brother home, bringing with him a truckload of family drama—and even worse, the news that Casper is wanted for questioning in connection to a crime back in Minnesota.

But Owen is more than the sum of his mistakes, a truth both he and Scotty discover when she escorts both brothers to Deep Haven as part of her new job on the Anchorage police force. Thrust into an unfamiliar world of family, faith, and fresh starts, Scotty begins to see potential for a happy ending . . . if she’s brave enough to embrace it.

Disclosure: I received a copy of this book for review purposes, any opinions expressed are my own.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Goldie and Bear Coming to DVD

Goldie and Bear Coming to DVD

If your kids are fans of Goldie & Bear, they are in for a special treat.  Join best friends Goldie and Bear on their adventures through Fairy Tale Forest in Disney Junior’s hit series Goldie & Bear: Best Fairytale Friends on DVD April 19th! It includes 7 episodes for over 2 hours of classic fairytales with a twist! Plus FREE Exclusive Playtime Fun Activity Kit with re-usable stickers, games and more!

GoldieAndBearBestFairytaleFriendsDVD copy

Everyone knows “Goldilocks and the Three Bears,” but after that story ended, a remarkable friendship began! Team up with newfound best friends Goldie and Bear on amazing adventures as they laugh, play and learn important life lessons in the wondrous Fairy Tale Forest.

Climb a beanstalk with Jack, try on Little Red’s famous hood, outsmart the tricky Big Bad Wolf, and much more. Join Goldie and Bear – and your favorite fairytale and nursery rhyme characters – for magical, song-filled fun you’ll treasure today and ever after!

Episodes:                            

  • The Birthday Chair/ Big Bear
  • Fee Fi Fo Shoe/ Little Gold Riding Hood
  • Bear’s Red Shoes/ Goose Sitters
  • Moon Jump/ Big Good Wolf
  • Pinocchio-itis/ The Clubhouse That Jack Built
  • The Egg/ Golden Kickball
  • Thumbelina’s Wild Ride/ Big Bad Houseguest

ABOUT “GOLDIE & BEAR”:

“Goldie & Bear” is a fairytale-inspired Disney Junior animated series that premiered in September 2015. The series follows the adventures of Goldie and her newfound best friend Bear following the renowned porridge incident of “Goldilocks and The Three Bears.” Well-known characters from fairy tales, folk tales and nursery rhymes can be seen in the series, including Humpty Dumpty, Little Red Riding Hood, the Three Little Pigs and the Big Bad Wolf, who is often referred to simply as “Big Bad.” Goldie and Bear seek out opportunities for fun with their friends, having adventures that often feature a touch of magic.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Gluten Free Treats that are Delicious

Gluten Free Treats that are Delicious

A few years ago my husband and I took a change and tried some gluten-free cupcakes from a new bakery that had just opened in our neighborhood.  This was right at the start of the popularity of gluten-free products, at least for us.  We had a horrible experience with our baked goodies and it made us not want to ever try gluten-free foods again.  It seems that we were not the only ones who have a hard time with gluten-free products.  According to a 2009 study by the Gluten-Free Intolerance Group of North America, more than 70% of gluten-free shopper agree that it’s hard to find good tasting gluten-free foods.  Inspired by Happiness reached out to me and offered to send me a selection of their gluten-free cakes for review, though I was hesitant, I jumped at the chance to try them, and to share my thoughts with you.

inspired by happiness
Photo Credit: Inspired by Happiness

I received three flavors of gluten-free cakes to try from Inspired by Happiness.  They arrived in a cold package, frozen, ready to be thawed at room temperature, refrigerated or frozen.  The three flavors I received was the Cravin’ for Cookies & Cream, Dreamin’ of Chocolate and Dreamin’ of Strawberries.  The shelf life on these cakes vary based on how you store them.  Frozen cakes last 9 months, 5 days for refrigerated cakes and about 4 hours at room temperature.

Inspired by Happiness Gluten-Free Cakes (4)

Inspired by Happiness Gluten-Free Cakes (1)

As you can see from the packages mines were properly frozen so they looked amazing in package.  From this stage I sat it out on the counter for about an hour and it was perfect for serving.  According to the package a serving is about 1/6 of the square cake.  I promise that you’ll have more than one serving easily.  These cakes were simply delicious.  We couldn’t tell they were gluten-free treats.  I actually checked the packaging a few times to make sure it was because it was that good.  My husband was a little hesitant but once he had a bite, he ate almost half of the Dreamin’ of Strawberries cake.  I would serve these cakes at any function I was hosting, knowing that everyone would absolutely love them.

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Inspired by Happiness Gluten-Free Cakes (8)

Inspired by Happiness Gluten-Free Cakes (9)

The first cake we tried was the Cravin’ for Cookies & Cream cake.  I was expecting the cake to be dry and tasteless but that was not the case at all.  It was very moist and full of amazing flavors.  It tasted like the cake was fresh out my oven.  The icing wasn’t too sweet and overpowering, it was the perfect complement to the white sponge cake.  The silky layers of vanilla mousse paired with the cubes of cookies brought it together so nicely.  The cake is topped with a layer of dark chocolate ganache and white chocolate drizzle.  I think that part was my left favorite part of the cake, the dark chocolate was a tad too bitter for my taste.  Oddly enough my four-year old loved it.

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Inspired by Happiness Gluten-Free Cakes (12)

Inspired by Happiness Gluten-Free Cakes (13)

The Dreamin’ of Strawberries was the second cake to be sampled and it was by far our favorite.  I wanted to save this for my husband because he loves Strawberry Shortcake.  This is made of a moist shortcake, filled with layers of strawberry fruit filling and a Belgian white chocolate mousse.  It’s topped with whipped cream and drizzled with white chocolate.  This cake was even better than the first.  I couldn’t believe how moist the cake was.  I loved this cake so much I would serve it at our vow renewal as a dessert option for guests.  Be careful if you choose the Dreamin’ of Strawberries cake, you could easily eat the whole cake in one setting.

Photo Credit: Inspired by Happiness
Photo Credit: Inspired by Happiness

The last cake we tried was the Dreamin’ of Chocolate and like the other it was moist and simply amazing.  I couldn’t believe that this was a gluten-free chocolate cake.  This is a chocolate lovers dream.  I actually preferred the chocolate ganache on the top of this cake.  It wasn’t bitter like the dark chocolate one on the Cookies & Cream Cake.

If you’re looking for delicious gluten-free desserts for you and your family be sure to look for these amazing cake choices from Inspired by Happiness.  Use the store locator to find a store near you that sell these cakes or try your local Target.  If your local store does not carry these products, see the bakery manager and ask about getting a special order.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Our Holidays with the Kia Sorento #DriveKia #DriveShop

Our Holidays with the Kia Sorento

After the week we spent riding around in the 2016 Kia Sorento, I do believe that if Santa’s sleigh was a car, it would surely be the 2016 Kia Sorento.  My family and I had the luxury of riding around in the Sorento for a week.  Thanks to Kia and DriveShop for the loaner for a week.  There are so many wonderful things I could say about this car, the most important one is how in one week our whole family became huge fans of Kia.

Kia Sorento Review

I’ve been sold on Kia since we had the opportunity to test drive the Kia Sedona last year.  It was an amazing car that was perfect for our family and I’ve shared with my husband on multiple occasions why I think it should be our next car purchase.  We were all excited about having the car for a week during the holidays, the weather was warm however it rained the entire time we had the car.  We were hoping to travel to Hershey but the constant rain made it impossible. That however didn’t stop us from enjoying the car.

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Lighted Foot Board

One cool feature of the car was the lighted foot board, once it got dark out, to help you see where you were getting into the car, the foot board turned red.  I never had to worry about where to step.

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The trunk was very roomy and held quite a few of our family’s Christmas gifts even when we were using one of the rear seats in the car.

There’s much more space when the rear seats are folded down.  When they are up there wasn’t much space, enough to hold a few items.  Our family of six needs as much space as possible so we prefer a bigger trunk.  Despite the trunk size all of us were able to ride comfortably in the car whenever we were traveling in it.

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Everyone were able to sit comfortably in the Sorento when we took it out around Baltimore.  When we needed more trunk space we folded down one of the rear seats and had one of the kids sit back there.  If we didn’t need trunk space we had two kids sit in the rear section and two in the middle row seats.

The interior of this car had a beautiful two-tone leather that made it look like a million bucks.  Personally we wouldn’t get the lighter cream color because, well kids are messy.  With the rain and mud I was constantly trying to wipe down seats.  If you don’t have kids or your kids are older this color combination may work great.  There were lots and lots of cup holders in the car.  This is another feature that may not seem like a big deal but trust me it really does make a big difference.

Technology was another big plus in this car, starting with ample usb ports for all your charging cables.  There were also quite a few car charger plugs as well as a center console that gave the driver ultimate control.  The parking assist on Kia is mind blowing and while it takes hubby a day or two to get accustomed to using, by the end of our week loan he’s a pro at trusting the car’s system.  It’s always hard to go back to our everyday car after we spend a week with the newest and best on the market.

I just love this moon roof in this @kiamotorsusa Sedona. #driveshop #drivekia

A photo posted by Nickida Stephens (@nostephens) on

We loved the moon roof in this car, it covered almost the entire length of the car.  The only downside was with all the rain we didn’t get to enjoy it on a sunny day.  I should also note that if you happen to be absent minded at times the Kia Sorento is here to help.  My husband had opened the roof one day when before it started raining.  Once he got home and parked, the car immediately alerted him the roof was opened and needed to be closed.

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Privacy is key to anyone and the Kia Sorento has shades on the rear windows.  Use them to relax while riding in the car, to block out the sun or to just keep out the prying eyes.

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We haven’t had a Kia yet that people didn’t give us compliments on, and it was no different with the Kia Sorento.  Everywhere we went people complimented us on how nice the car was.  We had quite a few inquires from strangers about the car and what features we loved about it.  This is another great car from Kia and I personally can’t wait to see what else they come up with in the future.  I’m sure it’s going to be fabulous.

Our loaner was the 2016 Kia Sorento SXL AWD and the MSRP is $46,495, however the starting base model of the Sorento has a MSRP of $25,100.  To learn more about this and other Kia Motors cars visit them online – www.kia.com

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Gift Idea for Coffee Lovers #MilkFrothing

Gift Idea for Coffee Lovers


My mom is a big coffee drinker, as a matter of fact I can honesty say that most of my sisters are as well.  They all have fancy coffee machines and spend a fortune on coffee cups, or coffee from the stores.  They are always looking for different ways to take their coffee drinks to the next level.  If you have someone in your home that likes coffee then I be they’ll love the X-Chef Stainless Steel Milk Cup Milk Frothing Pitcher.  I received this product for review purposes, any opinions expressed are my own.

Photo Credit: Better Homes and Garden

I am not a pro at making fancy coffee drinks but I will say that it is possible with this milk pitcher.  With this pitcher coffee lovers and create special drinks right in their own home and save money in the process.  The pitcher has multiple uses though, you don’t have to use it just to make lattes, it can also be used to measure and serve other liquids to for serving milk.  Some people like milk in their tea or you can have the kids make hot chocolate on a cold day.

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The pitcher arrives in a small box that’s perfect for gifting.  Just wrap or drop in a gift bag for easy gifting.  Its easy to know what you’re getting because the photo is right on the box.  The pitcher is in a white bag and it also has small pamphlet inside.

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The X-Chef Milk Frother is made of Mirror finished 18/10 stainless steel, rust-proof, stain-proof and crash-proof, heat-proof, unbreakable by daily use.  The spout makes it easy to create art in your lattes.  You don’t have to worry about making a mess when pouring milk or any liquids from your pitcher.

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The pitcher is 20 ounces, so it holds a good amount of liquid.  It’s a good size and if your coffee machine has a section for a frother, this one would fit fine.  This would make a great gift for a coffee lover, a lovely house warming gift or a lovely house warming gift.  Regardless of the reason you are purchasing the pitcher, it’s a great product that you’ll love and enjoy.

You can purchase the X-Chef Stainless Steel Milk Cup Milk Frothing Pitcher on Amazon.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Add Halo Top Creamery to Your Valentine’s Day Celebrations

Add Halo Top Creamery to Your Valentine’s Day Celebrations

I can’t wait for our Family Love Dinner this year.  It’s a bonus that it’s on the weekend so I get to create a wonderful dinner for the family to enjoy.  If you’re like me and you’re making your family dinner at home or you’re thinking of staying in and treating your Valentine to a special day then Halo Top Creamery is the perfect way to end your celebrations.

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Halo Top Creamery has a flavor for everyone, including options like Vanilla Bean, Strawberry, Chocolate, Lemon Cake and their newest varieties, Mint Chip, Chocolate Mocha Chip and Birthday Cake.  I would love the Lemon Cake or the Vanilla Bean flavors.  What flavor would you like to try the most?  Halo Top Ice Cream is only 60-80 calories per serving (240-280 per pint), allowing your readers to eat their heart out — guilt free!  It is also 100% organic, filled with six grams of protein and four grams of fiber per serving. Did I mention it’s also only four grams of sugar per serving as well?

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Halo Top Creamy is the first 100% natural, light ice cream brand and the introduction of their newest flavors means more better-for-you, non-GMO ice creams.  Like all of Halo Top’s ice cream products, these three new flavors are low in calories and sugar, high in protein and fiber and completely free of gluten, trans fat and gelatin (making them all vegetarian-friendly). They also contain no corn syrup, no artificial sweeteners and no synthetic growth hormones.

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Halo Top Creamery is available at select natural food markets across the country for $4.99 to $5.99 per pint. For more information please visit: www.halotop.com.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Top Mates Finishing Sauce Review #TopMates

Top Mates Finishing Sauce Review


I’m not the best cook in the world.  I can follow a recipe very well but I really can’t make up something on my own.  My husband is probably tired of me making the same ole dishes all the time, so I am always looking for something to spice things up and add some flair to my meals.  Top Mates sent three jars of their finishing sauces for review, and to share my opinion with my readers.  I was so excited about trying them out and telling you how they tasted.

Top Mates Finishing Sauce (2)

The three choices we ended up with were Smoked Tomato, Savory Pineapple and Savory Cherry.  These sauces arrived wrapped in bubble wrap to protect the glass jar so they don’t break.  They are vacuumed sealed, once you open it up just store it in the refrigerator to keep it from spoiling.

Top Mates Finishing Sauce (5)

Top Mates Finishing Sauce (4)

The first sauce we tried was the Savory Pineapple and it was absolutely delicious.  There are chunks of pineapple all through the sauce, which makes it even more tasty.  The only thing I didn’t like were the pickling spices that were in the sauce.  The whole pieces I didn’t like when I bit into them.

Top Mates Finishing Sauce (6)

Top Mates Finishing Sauce (7)

I used my sauce on pork chops that I was making for dinner.  I pasted the sauce on top of the chops after flipping them from one side to the other side.  This way it was nice and warm and the juices started to work it’s way into the meat.  You can use this sauce during cooking or as a condiment.  I used it for both.

Top Mates Finishing Sauce (8)

My husband loved his chops with the sauce so much he cleaned the bone.  He couldn’t stop talking about how great the chops tasted.  I received lots of praise on dinner that night and it was all thanks to the Top Mates Finishing Sauce.  I tried the Savory Cherry on a slow roasted pork shoulder for dinner and it was just as delicious.  I can’t wait to try the smoked tomato sauce on some meatloaf.

If you’re looking for new ways to add some flair and flavor to your meals, then check out the giveaway below from Top Mates Sauces.  Thanks to Top Mates one lucky reader will win three jars of their finishing sauce to enjoy with their meals.  The giveaway is open to US residents 18 and older.  Ends February 15th, 2016.  Enter via the tool below

Top Mates Finishing Sauce

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Make Valentine’s Day Special with Trudeau

Make Valentine’s Day Special with Trudeau

In our home each year we celebrate Valentine’s Day as a family.  It started when one year my husband and I went out for dinner and it took an hour to get a drink, almost everything we ordered was out of stock and the service was horrid.  That year we thought going out the night after Valentine’s Day would be better since most people were out the previous day, well we were wrong.  Since that year we have decided to instead spend the time celebrating with our children at home.  Each year we dress up and I make a nice dinner for us to enjoy.  We get small gifts for the kids and cards for the whole family.  We call it Stephens Family Love Dinner.

Family Love Dinner 2014

I love planning our family love dinner because it gives me the opportunity to try different options and this year I can’t wait because I am adding Fondue for an appetizer and for dessert as well.  We received a brand new Trudeau Copper Fondue set for review and to share my thoughts with my readers.  I think it’s a great opportunity to try something new for our dinner this year.

Trudeau Copper Fondue Set

Trudeau Copper Fondue Set

About the Trudeau Copper Fondue Set:

This sleek and stylish fondue set is build to LOVE. A fun and festive way to serve delectable cheeses, savory meats and scrumptious chocolate, the Lumina with its copper finish makes fondue the main event. From top to bottom, the set has an array of impressive features. The tri-ply copper pot offers superior heat conductivity and comes equipped with a ceramic double-boiler insert for either cheese or chocolate. Its polished 18/8 stainless steel interior is easy to maintain and clean.  The stainless steel fork guide keeps fondue creations in place for those rests between Valentine’s Day kisses!   Set includes a copper and stainless steel base, six color-coded stainless steel serving forks, a cool-touch safety burner with cover, and a recipe booklet full of tips and techniques to LOVE fondue.  MSRP $149.99

fondue set (2)

This set is a beautiful set that includes everything you need to create a delicious fondue.  I even received the gel for the burner from Trudeau.  We have everything we need to make something great. The set arrives in pieces in the box.  The bottom stand is a copper/silver stand.  There is an outer copper pot and the inner ceramic pot where you cheese or chocolate goes to get melted.  The top copper ring can be used to hold the serving forks when not in use.  You don’t have to use this portion if you don’t want to.  The burner is a small steel pot with a short handle that is easy to remove from under the main pot.

fondue set (3)

I like that the serving forks are color coded.  At the start of making the fondue each person gets their own fork and you never have to worry about it getting mixed up with anyone else.  Trudeau even takes the guess work out of finding a good recipe by including a booklet with basic starter recipes.  Romance has never been this easy.  I could see this being a great wedding gift as well.  Newlyweds can easily skip those expensive fondue restaurants and use this unit.  It’s built to last and it looks very fancy.

trudeau fondue set
Photo Credit: Trudeau

If you’re still planning your Valentine’s Day dinner or looking for a great gift for a couple, I recommend the Trudeau Copper Fondue Set.  Visit the Trudeau website to learn more about this set and all their other amazing products.  Be sure to get social and follow them on social media – FacebookTwitterInstagram.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Duri Nail Polish Valentine’s Day Collection

Duri Nail Polish Valentine’s Day Collection

Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and it’s the prefect time of year to start rocking all your favorite shades of red.  I have to admit that don’t wear as much red as I did when I was younger although I do love the color.  It was my hair color for a while in college and this year I am planning a comeback for a shade of red on my natural hair.  To get me ready for Valentine’s Day Duri Cosmetics sent me their “3 free” non-toxic Valentine’s Day Nail Polish Collection for review, any opinions expressed are my own.

Duri Valentine's Day Collection

Duri offers over 250 shades to choose from including the aptly named  EVERY DAY IS A VALENTINE a pigment rich true red, CUPID RULES a modern bubblegum pink and even a ten digit worthy pastel floral bouquet ICED ROSES. And nothing says Valentine’s Day more than UNEXPECTED KISS, a sheer, orchid pink and SWEETHEART, a bright, red-orange shade.

Duri Nail Polish

What I loved the most about these nail polishes is that they had several different shades to choose from.  My favorite was the Everyday is a Valentine color.  I immediately put it on my toes.  It’s such a bright shade of red.  Perfect for this time of year.  My second favorite was the Unexpected Kisses which has a lovely pearl look.  Check out all the different shades below.

Duri Nail Polish Valentine's Line (7)

This is the Everyday is a Valentine on my toes.  Pardon my photo, I wanted to get close up so you could really see the color on my toes.

Iced Roses
Iced Roses

This is the Iced Roses color.  It’s very light so you need to have a few coats but I would use it as a highlight on your nails.

Unexpected Kisses
Unexpected Kisses

This is my second favorite the Unexpected Kiss that has a lovely pearled look to me.  It’s a beautiful color that sparkles and add to your Valentine’s Day looks.

Cupid Rules
Cupid Rules

The Cupid Rules color reminds me of the 80’s, it’s a bright bubblegum color that’s hip and colorful.

Duri Nail Polish

Individual bottles retails for $6 per bottle from Duri.  The polish is durable and lasts very long.  I tested it with one coat and two coats.  In about four days the one coat polish started to chip.  The two coats polish took almost two weeks before it started to chip.  That’s great because I wash my hands a lot.  The polish lasted much longer on my toes.  I’ve received tons of compliments from family about my nails when they saw the polish.  I definitely recommend grabbing these as a special gift for Valentine’s Day.  Create a small spa basket for your wife or girlfriend.  Put in a foot scrub, foot lotion, and a few bottles of polish with a nail kit, cotton rounds, and polish remover with a coupon for a foot massage and toe nail painting.  It’s creative and fun.

Visit Duri online to check out their Valentine’s Day Collection and see all the other colors in their whole line.  Get social and see how people are using their Duri Nail Polishes – Facebook – TwitterInstagram.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Captive Movie Review

Captive Movie Review

David Oyelowo is becoming one of my favorite actors, I saw him in a movie recently that was so captivating, and entertaining I didn’t think he could top that performance, but that was until I saw the movie Captive.  Based on a true story, this movie is sure to hold you captive and entertained from start to finish.  I was blown away again by Oyelowo’s performance, as well as Kate Mara.  I’ve always loved the book, The Purpose Driven Life and I just loved how they made this movie and brought it to our screens.

About Captive:

Based on a miraculous story about the power of faith, Captive is an “amazing, inspiring” drama about the spiritual collision of two lost souls, Brian Nichols (Golden Globe Nominee David Oyelowo), on the run from police and desperate to make contact with his newborn son, takes recently widowed mother Ashley Smith (Kata Mara) hostage in her own apartment.  Fearing for her life and desperately hoping to see her daughter again, she turns to Rick Warren’s The Purpose Driven Life for guidance.  Ashley and her captor face a crossroads where they discover hope and light in the midst of despair in the moving film that Dick Rolfe, CEO, Dove Foundation hailed as “powerful.”

Captive-DavidSams

Though this movie has Christian references I recommend it for anyone.  If you’re looking for something moving and inspirational, you have to see this film.  The actors did an amazing job telling the story of all the characters involved.  Once you see it, you will have to watch again just to soak in all the knowledge that’s packed in this film, about forgiveness and second changes.  I’ll be sharing this movie with my family and friends for sure.  It’s one of the best movies I’ve seen in a long time.

Disclosure: I received a copy of Captive for review from Fly By Promotions.  Any opinions expressed are my own.  Thanks to Propeller and Fly By Promotions one lucky reader will have the opportunity to win their own copy of Captive.  To enter comment below letting me know the last movie you saw on DVD.  Giveaway ends February, 4th, 2016.

Winner Guidelines:

Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post.

Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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The Battle of the Sippy Cups #NubyParent #Review

The Battle of the Sippy Cups

Transitioning to a sippy cup can be a hard for kids, with all four of my children I found myself in a constant battle of finding the right cup for my kids.  I would like to say it got easier with each child but that simply wasn’t the case at all.  My oldest child took at least five different tries, the second child was breast fed so we just couldn’t get anything to work for him, my third child has sensory issues, developmental delays, and Autism so it took us a while to find the perfect fit, and then with our fourth child we had the same battle.  At one he showed no signs of wanting to give up his bottle, so we ended up trying a variety of sippy cups.

sippy cup battle

I’m a Nuby Parent and I receive products to write reviews.  Any opinions expressed are my own and have not been influenced.

Thanks to my Nuby Parent connect I didn’t have to break the bank to find the right sippy cup for our fourth child.  They sent me five cups to review and share my thoughts with my readers.  I’m sure you know that with kids sippy cups can get lost or misplaced and that’s why you see only four in our photo.  My son put one down somewhere when I was taking the photo but we had already been testing for a month.  I’ll start in order of how I suggest you start trying out and then share with you which ones my son loved the most.

This is the blue bottle in the photo above – Busy Sipper 2 Stage Cup.  It comes with two inserts and I loved it for transitioning my son from a bottle to a cup.  He immediately took to this bottle because of the shape.  It reminded him of his regular bottles so he didn’t dismiss it right away.  This cup has two stages of nipples.  Stage one is the soft silicone spout, it doesn’t spill and perfect for moving from a bottle nipple to trying out sippy cups.  It has a faster flow than a baby bottle nipple so I suggest giving it a try once your child has mastered a fast nipple.  For my son that was around 14 months.  It could be sooner or later for some kids.  There is also a stage 2 free flow pull-up sipper and I didn’t use that with my son.  He’s just not read for a free flow sipper yet.  I find that he makes a huge mess when we give him an free flow sipper.  This bottle also comes with a clip, but we never used it at all.  This is a 12 oz bottle/cup, and you can purchase it at Walmart.

This is the Wash or Toss Free Flow Spout Printed Cups.  These are sold in three packs and can be purchased at Target.  I’ve used these with all my children.  My autistic son only drank from these when he first started out with sippy cups.  I love them because they are very affordable, easy to clean, and disposable.  I love having these when we are traveling.  If I forget to bring a cup I know I can head to the store and pick up a three pack, and if they get lost or broken, I can easily replace them for a low price.  These cups come with fun designs that are colorful and engaging.  Be careful with these because the tops don’t have covers so they do cause spills.  The cups are 10 ozs and the lids are easy to snap on and off the cups.  Although it was easy to snap on my son wasn’t able to get it off on his own.  These are definitely a great travel cup.

nuby sippy cup (4)

The Insulated Stainless Steel No-Spill Soft Sipper is a 7.5 oz trainer sippy cup.  It’s perfect for introducing your child to independent drinking.  It’s small enough so they get a nice amount of fluids.  This cup will keep drinks cool up to 10 hours, so it’s a great travel cup or one for overnight feedings.  Nuby suggests trying this cup at 6 months plus.  The handles are perfect for holding so your child doesn’t have to try to hold the base of the cup.  The soft spout works great between a regular nipple and the one on the cup.  My son liked chewing on his and gritting it on his teeth.  He still like using it now.

This is another insulated sippy cup, this cup is a 9 oz cup and recommended for kids at 12 months and older.  This is the Insulated Stainless Steel No-Spill Flip-it.  The is perfect for  helping your child transition from using a spout and pulling up in a straw.  This was the last cup we tried with my son in the set.  One he was pulling up from this straw it was easy for us to get him to pull up in any type of straw in any cup.  At this point we stopped with his bottles completely.  I slowly threw them away once we introduced each cup and got him to drink both milk and apple juice from the cups.  This cup also keeps liquids cool for up to 10 hours and it’s great for traveling.  This one is probably one of my favorites.  You can purchase this cup at Babies R Us.

The No-Spill Insulated Cool Sipper is the perfect cup to help transition to using an open cup.  Recommended for kids 18 months and older.  This was the cup my son was using the most because we wanted to get him into drinking from an open cup.  This is also the cup not pictured.  This cup holds 9 oz of fluids and keeps drinks cool longer than regular cups.  The soft silicone spout worked great for our son because he didn’t like cups with the tough plastic tops.  This cup is lightweight and easy for him to get a good grip.  You can find these cups in two packs in stores and online at Babies R Us.

nuby sippy cup (3)

nuby sippy cup (2)

nuby sippy cup (1)

JB wanted to help me model the cups
JB wanted to help me model the cups
nuby sippy cup (8)
JB always wants to take the cup from his little brother

So there you have it five great options for sippy cups from Nuby.  Each one has different benefits.  For us my son immediately took the Busy Sippy because it was shaped like a bottle.  He used that for about a week before taking the Insulated Sipper with the handles, shortly after that he took the Cool Sipper and then the Take and Toss.  The last cup he took was the Flip-It with the straw.  It took him a while to realize he had to pull up to get his drink and not just tilt the cup up like the others.  Now after months of trying all kinds of cups he drinks from anything with a straw and he can also drink open cup.

To learn more and find other Nuby products visit them online at – www.nuby.com

Connect with Nuby on social media: Like on Facebook, Follow on Twitter and Instagram.  They are always hosting giveaways for fans.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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Hipmunk Hotels: Underrated Vacation Destinations in Bloomington, Madison, Traverse and More

Underrated Vacation Destinations in the Midwest

Vacations give you the change to relax and unwind, while also exploring and having fun. There are lots of popular cities to visit in the Midwest, but often the underrated destinations turn out to be the best. They tend to be less crowded and more affordable than more popular locations. Here are five underrated vacation destinations in the Midwest that the family will enjoy.

Not Just a College Town

Memorial Stadium

Photo by Chris Wells via Trover.com

The town of Champaign-Urbana is a hot spot for college students at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; however, it isn’t just a college town. Families traveling to the area can choose from a variety of area attractions, including the Staerkel Planetarium, Orpheum Children’s Science Museum, and the Krannert Art Museum. Crystal Lake Park offers a variety of options for visitors as well; the family aquatic center costs just $9 per person ($6 on Tuesdays). Taste of Champaign and the Downtown Festival of the Arts are just two of the festivals that bring an eclectic selection of music and food to the area. Hotels in Champaign are very affordable and average about $70 per night.

Romantic Getaway in Northern Michigan

Traverse City

Photo by Lauren Bassart via Trover.com

Traverse City, Michigan sits on the shores of the West Arm Grand Traverse Bay, and is ideal for a romantic getaway, outdoor adventure, or creative retreat. Plan a getaway filled with adventure at Great Wolf Lodge Traverse City. Families can enjoy the complimentary water park with slides, a lazy river, splash playgrounds, and a pool. Adults can unwind with a massage or beauty treatment from the spa. Enjoy a free wine tasting at one of the 50 Traverse area wineries. Make sure to be thorough by checking out one of the other hotels in Traverse City.

Hotels for Any Traveler’s Budget in Bloomington

Mall of America

Photo by Theresa White via Trover.com

The Mall of America is a major attraction in Bloomington, Minnesota. The mall has over 500 retail shops, as well as fun-filled attractions including Nickelodeon Universe, SEA LIFE Minnesota Aquarium, Crayola Experience, Amazing Mirror Maze, and a flight simulator center. Radisson Blu Mall of America is attached to the mall, making it a top choice for travelers. The mall isn’t the only top attraction in Bloomington; outdoor lovers have over 100 area lakes and hundreds of acres of park lands in and around the city to choose from. Room rates vary and start as low as $45 per night.

Home of Hallmark Cards

Kaufman Stadium

Photo by Landtripping via Trover.com

If you find yourself in Kansas City, Missouri, a visit to the Hallmark Headquarters is definitely in order. It offers tons of family-friendly free activities that will help you save while vacationing. Activities include puppet shows, ethnic feasts, exhibits for kids, and antique shows. If you’re in the area during baseball season, catch a Kansas City Royals game. Downtown Kansas City offers lots of choices for music lovers, too. Finding the right hotel deals in Kansas City is a breeze with Hipmunk.

College Football Fans Rejoice in Madison

Tenney Park Locks

Photo by Renee O via Trover.com

College football fans descend on Madison, Wisconsin in droves when the local college is playing. Hotels within the city sell out fast from August to December, and the streets surrounding the stadium are usually packed with fans. If you’re planning to visit for a game, book early for the best rates. Voted the most walkable city, Madison lets you skip renting a car while visiting, because there’s always an attraction within walking distance no matter where you stay.

If the Midwest is on your bucket list, check out one of these awesome cities; there’s something for everyone.

Nickida

Nickida - is a wife and stay at home mother of four. She was born in Trinidad but moved to the US at age 14. She started blogging on an off for about three years and recently started writing more consistently. She enjoys sharing about her children, marriage, books, recipes, movies, reviews, giveaways and much more. She is working on improving her baking skills and building on her cake decorating business.

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