Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Unlock Unexpected Travel Adventures with a Target Wedding Registry! {$25 Target Gift Card Giveaway}

As August nears its end, families with children have probably been focusing on camps, activities and getting in all of the swimming and playing that they can before school begins.

However, for younger couples across the country, this month has most likely been filled with travel and weddings. As much as I love life now, I do look back fondly at the summer days that were filled with the ability to jump on a plane to explore new lands, the way that adventures seemed always around the corner, and the overall way that any day could be filled with unexpected experiences.

Which is why right now is the perfect time for all of the couples planning their upcoming wedding to be sure to head to their nearest Target to browse, sign up and fill their Target Wedding registry!

Target wedding registry

From home decor to games and electronics to items for entertaining (and everything in between), Target's wedding registry allows users to add anything from the store or Target.com to their wishlist. Why not start your new life together with all of the everyday essentials, necessities, splurges and things you'll both really use and love?

But, along with the practicality, ease and convenience, registering at Target can also help unlock a whole world of unexpected adventures! As couples prepare to explore locations near and far together, their trips can be even more unforgettable and incredible just by bringing along fantastic items from their registry!

For instance, registering for the Canon EOS Rebel T5I and one or two Coleman 40 Degree Sleeping Bags just might lead to a whole slew of romantic evenings under the stars in America's heartland... with the stunning photographs to prove it!

canon camera sleeping bag

Or maybe you'd like to see the sights without actually sleeping in the wide open air?

Then you might want to register for the SwissGear City Pack and one or two Fitbit Flex Wireless Wristbands so that you and your new spouse can book hotels in London and Paris and get fit spending your days hiking around seeing Big Ben and the Eiffel Tower together!

swiss gear fitbit flex

Although my husband and I were already married at the time, one of our memorable summer trips was our last pre-baby vacation with two other couples to Hawaii. Even being around six months pregnant at the time, I still wasn't going to miss out on the amazing sightseeing (waterfalls! Volcanoes! Tropical plants and flowers!), hiking, relaxing, exploring and more!

And even though the items we packed worked great, I sure wouldn't mind going back in time and bringing things like Canon EOS Rebel T5I and the SwissGear City Pack to have made the trip even more unforgettable and to have possibly unlocked even more unexpected adventures!

Hawaii vacation

No matter what sort of ultimate summer adventure you have planned next, be sure to keep a Target Wedding registry in mind so that your family and friends can help you experience your trip to the fullest. Your guests can shop in-store or online, returns and exchanges are simple and you even end up with a bonus savings day after your wedding to pick up any items left at a discount.

Find out more about all of Target's great registry options by visiting Target.com or visiting your local Target store today!

Plus, thanks to their generosity, one person will be even more prepared to set off on their next journey in style, because...

One lucky person will win a $25 Target gift card!

Target gift card

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

Peet's House Blend K-Cup Coffee {Review}

Cross Country Cafe logo
Although I am typically a find the brand I like and stick to it type of person, the huge variety and selection of coffees has proven to be an exception to that personal rule. How can I stick with just one type when there are so many more amazing options to discover?

Proven yet again by Cross Country Cafe and the introduction of Peet's K-cups to their amazing lineup of K-cup coffees.

Peet's House Blend K-Cup Packs

After being born and raised in Holland, Alfred Peet moved to the U.S. and was shocked to discover what the states called coffee. In 1966 he opened his first Coffee & Tea Store and the rest, as they say, is history.

Over the past four decades, Peet's has stayed true to their unrelenting commitment to quality and, with the addition of K-cup packs to their lineup, it is now possible to enjoy their coffees quickly and easily right from your Keurig brewer.

Considering that I was unfamiliar with Peet's but interested in seeing what has made this brand so popular year after year, I was ready to put it to the test with Peet's House Blend K-cups.

Peet's coffee

Cross Country Cafe also carries Peet's K-cups in Cafe Domingo, French Roast, Decaf House Blend and Major Dickason's Blend, however, why not start with the classic, signature style of the House Blend?

Popping one into my Keurig, the aroma instantly made me feel as though I was kicking back in one of their west coast cafes!

Peet's coffee house blend

My resulting mug of coffee showed that House Blend is a darker, rich roast, full of bright, balanced flavors and medium body that, in my opinion, would appeal to a wide range of coffee lovers.

Peet's k-cups

Even though I was initially hesitant due to the inclusion of "spiciness" in this coffee's description, I found that each sip of House Blend was inviting, crisp and extremely easy to love.

If Alfred Peet intended that this be his customers' introduction to Peet's, then I can see why folks chose to return again and again to try other varieties. I'm thrilled with this deep, dark coffee and the rich, delicious taste!

Peet's Coffee review

If you're already a fan of Peet's, you'll love that their delectable coffee is available in K-cups for even easier brewing. Or, if you haven't tried these before but are a devoted Keurig user, I recommend picking up a box (head over to the fabulous Cross Country Cafe for a great deal!) to give it a try today!

As a Cross Country Cafe Ambassador, I have been provided with products in exchange for my continued work with their company and affiliate links are included in the above post. The opinions shared are my own and honest and if you really need to see more, click here to see how I roll.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Baking From Scratch Without the Work: Immaculate Baking Dry Baking Mixes {Review}

Immaculate Baking logo
If there were an extra 30 or so hours in the day, it would seem much easier to get more things done, wouldn't it? I'd like to think that my books would be read, household chores would be done, naps would be taken, meals made from scratch would be on the table with time to spare...

Unfortunately, with only 24 hours each and every day, we all just do what we can to try to accomplish our goals and cross items off of our to-do list. For me, priority takes precedence and, if somehow there is time left to still put a homemade dish together, then that's a good day.

Fortunately, I've now been introduced to a brand that makes it possible for me to get much of my baking done faster, easier and more conveniently than before. Results that taste like they're made from scratch yet only take the time of a boxed mix? They're available from Immaculate Baking!

Immaculate Baking products

Immaculate Baking is best known for its delicious refrigerated baking dough and colorful American folk art packaging. With a fun variety of products, consumers know that Immaculate Baking goodies (Ready-to-Bake cookies, biscuits, scones, cinnamon rolls, crescent roll doughs and many more) are only made with high-quality organic and natural ingredients.

New to the collection, Immaculate Baking has recently launched a line of dry baking mixes with the same promises and non-GMO commitment of its refrigerated cookie origins: Using only wholesome, simple, delicious ingredients, and offering baking options ranging from all natural, organic and gluten free!

Essentially, Immaculate Baking's eight new dry baking mixes use the same ingredients you would use if you were to bake cookies, cakes, and brownies from scratch! The end result is a delicious plate of treats that have 0g trans fat and do not contain artificial preservatives or high fructose corn syrup. And did I mention the deliciousness?

Immaculate Baking mixes

These mixes really couldn't be much easier and are perfect to make as-is or to incorporate into any number of creative and tasty recipes (Immaculate Baking even has yummy recipe ideas for inspiration, if necessary).

As I found myself with no time to spare before one of our many summer playdates, I was more than happy to only have to grab a box of Immaculate Baking Gluten Free Double Chocolate Cookie Mix, a little oil and two eggs to whip up some homemade cookies (with the added bonus of these being gluten free, so no worries about having something that all of our guests could enjoy)!

double chocolate cookies

Whereas cookies from scratch would have taken a great deal more measuring and mixing, it was hardly more than a minute or two before I popped these into my oven and let the heat do the rest.

Without a doubt, these cookies were extremely easy and convenient and received multiple rave reviews about how delectable they were! I loved being able to have a treat that tasted as if it was made from scratch but didn't require the work or the time!

Immaculate Baking cookies

I am thrilled having been introduced to Immaculate Baking and their new Scratch Baking Mixes and can't wait to incorporate more of them into my kitchen in the future! From the All Natural Brownies to the All Natural Yellow Cake, these delicious, simple, wholesome mixes are perfect for every day as well as special occasions. YUM!

Look for the new Immaculate Baking Dry Baking Mixes in the baking aisle at Target and be sure to visit ImmaculateBaking.com (and connect with them on Facebook) to find out more about their full collection of products.

Disclosure: The information and prize pack have been provided by Immaculate Baking through Platefull Co-Op.

It's Time To Go Back To School with HEALTHY ESSENTIALS! {#Moms4JNJConsumer}

With summer winding down and a buzz of anticipation in the air for school to begin, I love seeing my kids' excitement. But as great as it is going to be for them to immerse themselves with new teachers, new friends and new learning, I know that back-to-school also means that life will be busy with lunches, field trips, PTO meetings, homework and more, adding up to a hectic few months.

Which is why right now is the perfect time for us to refresh and re-energize our daily routine! Instead of rushing around like crazy, we're slowly getting back into the swing of things by going to bed a little earlier, having closets and drawers organized and clear of outgrown items, labeling and storing school supplies, looking at upcoming lunch menus and more.

Along with these steps, we've found that now is also the perfect time to stock up on the great Johnson & Johnson products that the whole family depends on – from filling the medicine cabinet to encouraging healthy habits in all of us! Even better, HEALTHY ESSENTIALS is offering amazing printable coupons, tips & tools and so much more so that we all can save more than $40 by visiting HealthyEssentials.com!

Healthy Essentials products

From products for your skin, hair and mouth to following a healthier diet, Johnson & Johnson cares for the world one person at a time. So when it comes to re-energizing your routine for back-to-school, there are so many great HEALTHY ESSENTIALS items that we all know and love.

We're thrilled to be heading into a new season and school year with this great assortment:

LISTERINE HEALTHY WHITE GENTLE Rinse: The unique formula safely whitens teeth and is the only whitening product on the market that does not contain peroxide but includes the added benefit of fluoride to restore enamel, offering a gentler, non-irritating whitening experience while simultaneously preventing cavities. It also provides 12-hour cavity protection and strengthens teeth 99% better than brushing alone.

CLEAN & CLEAR ADVANTAGE Acne Spot Treatment: Shown to reduce pimples in just four hours. This medication starts to clear pimples immediately with maximum strength 2% Salicylic acid so that pimples are reduced in size, swelling and redness, and the formula won't over-dry skin.

JOHNSON'S Baby NO MORE TANGLES 2-in-1 Shampoo and Conditioner: A baby's hair may double in thickness by their second birthday, but remains more delicate than adult hair. Baby hair is more prone to breakage, and for this reason, this product's regimen is formulated with hair conditioners that gently moisturize as they cleanse to help hair grow.

AVEENO POSITIVELY RADIANT Skin Brightening Daily Scrub: Helps improve skin tone, texture and clarity to reveal brighter, more radiant skin. Its unique formula combines ACTIVE NATURALS moisture-rich soy extract with microbeads to gently exfoliate while you cleanse, leaving skin soft, smooth and even-looking.

SPLENDA Sweetener Products: SPLENDA Sweetener Products can contribute to a healthier lifestyle by helping to reduce calories from added sugar. SPLENDA Sweetener Products can be used almost anywhere sugar is used, including cooking and baking.

LUBRIDERM Daily Moisture Lotion
LUBRIDERM Daily Moisture Lotion: Daily Moisture Fragrance-Free Lotion is a family-friendly solution (for kids 4 and up) to replenish and moisturize dry skin. It is fragrance-free, fortified with Vitamin B5 and skin-essential moisturizers. The clean-feeling, non-greasy formula absorbs in seconds and moisturizes for hours – in fact, it's clinically shown to moisturize for 24 hours.

NEUTROGENA Oil Free Acne Wash Pink Grapefruit: Revolutionary MicroClear technology pushes medicine deep into pores to fight both the acne you see, and the acne that is forming below the surface.

RoC Deep Wrinkle Night Cream: Contains an exclusive combination of pure Retinol and an essential mineral complex that is clinically shown to visibly reduce even deep wrinkles after 12 weeks' use.

With back-to-school around the corner, these (and many other) Johnson & Johnson brands are going to be on your shopping list anyway, so why not save some money while purchasing them? Be sure to head over to HealthyEssentials.com to grab some fantastic deals on these (and more) products!

Ready to celebrate all things back to school? Then be sure to mark your calendar to join in the upcoming HEALTHY ESSENTIALS Twitter Party to share your suggestions for re-energizing your routine for the new school year!
  • What: #Moms4JNJConsumer
  • When: Wednesday, August 27th at 1pm ET (12pm CT/10am PT)
  • Prizes: There will be 15 prizes throughout the party, randomly chosen from all eligible correct responses to trivia questions. Each prize includes an assortment of Johnson & Johnson Family of Consumer Companies HEALTHY ESSENTIALS products with an estimated retail value of $50! 
  • RSVP: Find out more info and RSVP at the twtvite!
back-to-school twitter party

Be sure to head over to HealthyEssentials.com to sign up for savings for your family and get your back-to-school season off on the right foot!

This post is part of the HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® 2014 program by Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies, Inc. and The Motherhood, who sent me a box of products and compensated me for my time. Opinions, experiences and photos shared here are all my own, and I hope you enjoy them.