Freedom to Be Me This Summer

Summer is here and we are on the go! We have been out camping, watching ball games, stopping for ice cream and of course, playing at every park and playground we can find! With so much going on in our daily summer lives, the last thing I need is to stress about my clothes.

This post was made possible via my ambassadorship with Dryel. I was compensated to use the product.

I want to look my best, always, no matter if I am sitting around a campfire with friends, smiling for a photo opp with ice cream covered kids or appearing in a video or at an event as a blogger. These days I can wear what I want, no matter where life takes me. I have a secret weapon in my laundry arsenal that keeps me looking good and keeps my clothes in tip top shape. I am a Dryel Mom.

I Dryel my jeans to keep them looking new without stretching or shrinking. I Dryel my tops and save a fortune without going to the dry cleaner. I Dryel my skirts and they come out as crisp as could be in a matter of minutes. I carry a Dryel pen in my bag for those spur of the moment spots, stains and spills, so that when life happens on my favorite skirt, I don't need to sweat it, I can spot clean on the go and keep looking as cool as a cucumber!

Dryel is easy to use, easy to find in stores and it saves me so much time and stress! I am more than pleased with the results and the savings of time, money and my favorite outfits that Dryel offers to my family!

No matter what you are wearing or where life is taking you this summer, Dryel is ready to give you the freedom to wear what you want, no matter where the adventure takes you!

You can learn more about fabric care, where to buy and how to use Dryel by visiting them on social or on the Dryel site.

Chicken and Mushroom Sandwich

A few weeks ago, I realized that my grocery budget needed a major overhaul. Summer is here and my expenses always double in the summer. From utilities to entertainment; gasoline and groceries. You name it, with my entire family home for 3 months, it is going to cost more!

Thanks to BFree for sending product to use in this recipe! Be Free offers wheat and gluten free options ranging from pita to bagels, breads and rolls.

This year, I want to enjoy having my son and husband home with Harper and I. Sometimes, money stress really hampers our summer fun. So, I began examining our expenses and finding ways to cut them where possible without sacrificing any standard of living... well lets be honest, standard of eating!

I made it my mission to uncover great meals for a family of 2 adults and 2 preschool-ish age kids that would cost us less than $7 total.

$7 seems like a cheap meal right? Originally I thought about doing $5 meals, but I doubted I could produce delicious and nutritious meals on such a tight budget. We are not big beans and rice eaters. The possibilities have been promising so far on this inexpensive gourmet mission. I incorporate sale items into my menu to maximize my savings and to get the best use of fresh ingredients.

Sandwiches are a great option for any meal. They are fun to eat and they tie so many good flavors together! There is no shortage of sandwiches you can make! If you can dream it, make it and eat it! This is another one of those incredibly yummy and easy recipes that you can create for under $7. I loved that it created minimal dirty dishes in the preparation process and that the sandwich was substantial enough to make a meal on its own.

1 pound of boneless skinless chicken breast sliced thin or diced into small chunks.
1 cup of sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup of shredded cheese
8 slices of your choice sandwich bread, I used BFree Brown Seeded Sandwich Bread
Spicy Brown Mustard

 Add 1 tablespoon of oil to a frying pan. Cook thinly sliced chicken breast thoroughly.

As your chicken is browning, saute sliced mushrooms until they are a golden color.

When your chicken is ready add the cheese and allow to melt.

Add spicy brown mustard to the bread. Add cheesy chicken to the bread and top with mushrooms.
Serve while hot.

Do you ever serve hot sandwiches for dinner? What is your favorite kind to prepare?

You might also like my Elvis Sandwich Recipe or My Peanut Butter Chicken recipe. 

Pet Peace of Mind with Paby

With a few sweet dogs in the house and two little kids, I have this fear that I can't shake. What would happen to my dogs should the kids open the door and let them out if I were maybe washing dishes. It wasn't all that long ago that I tried to dash upstairs to the restroom only to hear the door open. I ran out to find my daughter riding her tricycle down the driveway and just entering the street!

What would happen if they got out? What would I do? The kids would surely slow my search down and with the kids being small, I could not leave them at home while I tried to find the dogs. It is legit, in my top 5 biggest fears.

Thanks to PABY for providing a sample.

PABY has a solution for pet parents like me. They offer a stylish and functional pet location tracker that doubles as a fitbit for dogs! This is such a cool device for safety and good health!

Let me tell you about this smart pet tracker:

Paby features a small, light (31.6 grams), durable and waterproof design available in a variety of colors and patterns (“Spider Red,” “Future Green,” “Allstar,” “Midnight Black” and “Bubble Pink”) to match the pet’s personality. This innovative, environmentally friendly pet product also includes an RGB LED flashing light for added pet safety and a high fidelity waterproof speaker that plays a sound to alert the user (via the mobile app) when their pet is nearby. With a gel state polymer lithium ion battery, the GPS tracker incorporates the latest battery technology and is built to last with PC ABS, laser direct structuring, UV coating and in-mold decoration.

This is a great way to know where your pets are, should they get out, and to make sure they are getting enough activity every day. It is a really cool product for pets and their people that I would highly recommend!

Explore magical London on the Thames

Explore magical London on the Thames  
There's nothing as romantic and as stylish as a cruise into the sunset with VIP service. The River Thames cuts through London in the most iconic landmarks of the city, such as the Houses of Parliament, London Bridge, Tower Bridge, the Docklands and the Millennium Dome. Admit it, once in a while you like to be treated like a toff. Our experienced wait staff and sommeliers will stop at nothing but the best service for you. The Thames dinner cruise is a paradigm shift on date night. It makes for the most memorable date without the claustrophobic environment of a restaurant.
Why Choose the Thames River cruise?
The ambiance
The laid back relaxing breeze of the River Thames and the view of the sun as it begins to dip over yonder are intimate if not breath taking. The cruises have live entertainment playing from the in-house singer, which will create the best mood for a romantic dinner. You get your private table and waiter who will serve you until the end of the cruise when you choose to end your night with a dance. The ever changing background starting from Big Ben to Millennium dome will also deliver an ambient environment for your dinner.
The Menu
Your four course a la carte meal will be served with a broad range of items from entrees to dessert. All the food is prepared fresh on board the cruise by a master chef. Enjoy generous servings of what is an adventurous palate. The menus are diverse and can cater for all special dietary requirements on prior notice. Ad hoc groups such as vegetarians and gluten-free meals are also available. Menus for Large groups of 21 or more people require to be set in advance, but allowance is given for individuals to change their dinners.
Packages and events
A quick check on will show you that this cruise has packages for everyone. You get three trim levels of classic, premier, and signature, each with its unique items. The signature package is the most exclusive package going for 135 pounds per person. Packages for lunch and breakfast are also available with menus for both adults and children. Recorded informative commentary is also available for the day cruises. Bookings and themes for a special event such as birthdays, valentine's day, anniversaries and mother's day are also available.
Scheduling and boats
The Thames River cruise runs a rigorous schedule with zero delays on the two boats Harmony and Symphony. The two boats feature unique designs to provide a 360-degree view. The symphony has a lower and upper deck making it synonymous with corporate events, dinners and other special occasions. Their interior designs are also aimed at creating that intimate environment for a memorable romantic cruise.
The Thames dinner cruise is an elegant out of the box dining experience. It provides a unique dinner with exotic meals in an ambient environment. It is an experience of lavishness and comfort reminiscent of movies like The Love Boat and The Titanic, and is worth experiencing.
John Bold is a seasoned chef and traveller. He spends his time exploring and finding the best of the food industry. He has a passion for outdoor eating and camping. For more information, visit this website

Unlocking the secret to a perfect homebrew coffee everyday

What do you look for first thing and the morning after your usual ritual? That’s right – a fresh cup of hot and delicious coffee. And what better way to take your daily dose of tasty caffeine than to have one ready for pouring?
Here’s how to prepare a coffee without unwanted bitterness and practically assure you and your family a satisfying cup every time.
Choose a good brand. Did you know that snobbism among coffee lovers rival that of wine drinkers? However, the fact remains that the world of coffee awaits anyone who wants to experience beyond mass-marketed commercial brands. Try specialty coffees that state its country, region, or state of origin. Prefer 100% pure Arabica beans. Cheaper alternatives like Robusta beans are also available, albeit with higher caffeine content and harsher flavour.
Always buy fresh. Coffee is best used within days after roasting or grinding them. Roasting them yourself or buying it from a local roaster is also possible. Take note that bright light and oxygen destroys the flavour of roasted beans, so keep it in a shaded and dry place all the time. All quality beans are sold in durable, vacuum-sealed bags.
Keep your coffee fresh. Keep opened coffee beans and freshly ground ones in an airtight container. Ceramic storage with rubber gaskets and glass canning are good options. Do not refrigerate since roasted beans are porous and automatically absorb moisture and food odours. Freezing coffee is not advisable as well.
Maintain your equipment. Storage, grinders, and coffee machine should be cleaned every few weeks to remove any dirt or oily build-up. Always use a natural or non-toxic cleaner to dissolve mineral deposits and rinse thoroughly after use.
Don’t use cheap filters. Here’s a giveaway bargain or cheap-priced paper coffee filters yield inferior coffee according to experts. Seek dioxin-free or oxygen-bleached filters. Even better, invest in a long-lasting gold-plated filter, which gives maximum flavour.
Do I (really) need a coffee machine?
Well, you wouldn’t necessarily be here if you’re not at least interested in the benefits of coffee machines. Here’s a no-nonsense list why you should own one:
The convenience. You and everyone in the family can just get their fix while in their pyjamas. Being able to make and drink coffee at home saves a lot of time and stress. It takes time to get into a car and or walk to the nearest coffee shop anyway.
You save money every month. One good thing about coffee is that it saves money over

time. You won’t have to run to a coffee shop every time you want a cup. Coffee lattes can sell as much as five dollars a pop. Investing in a coffee machine makes more sense.
Awesome tool for get togethers. Coffee machines make a great companion when hosting a social get-together like afternoon breaks or dinner parties. Some people like to have coffee after a big meal while others favour coffee rather than other drinks at events.
You can also check out buying guides online to help you choose your next coffee maker. User reviews are one of the best ways to review and compare brands or models before buying them.
End Note
Who doesn’t want to wake up to a delicious aroma of that freshly brewed and ready-made coffee? The little things make life magical - and a coffee machine is a great way to make the day right.

minions puppets

This super simple popsicle stick craft brings the fun of the minions to your craft time! These are great for book-markers or as the star of a dramatic play session!

There is nothing like a toy you make yourself! On a rainy day a little imagination can go a very long way. We made these DIY minions puppets on a whim and had so much fun playing with them! I know your kids will like them too! They came together in a few moments time and kept the kids entertained for at least an hour!  

To make this easy Minions Puppet Craft you will need:
craft sticks
Blue and Yellow Paint
Craft Eyes

Paint the bottom half of the craft sticks blue.
Paint the top half yellow.
Add an eye and here you have easy minions puppets!

If you have an idea for handmade puppets for toddlers and preschoolers I would love to hear about it in a comment. 

How to Create a Meaningful Home

Creating a home can be easy. Go to your closest Walmart and load up on .99 cent art, right? Well, for me it’s a bit different. I strive to create not only a home with ‘cute’ and ‘on trend’ decor, but also a home that is meaningful. You might be wondering what this means and if you are, let me explain. Instead of filling my home with pointless items, I really concentrate on what reminds me of important things and things that make me happy. For example, I could have a picture of just any sunset purchased from a store. Yes, it’s pretty, but it doesn’t have much (or any) meaning to me. If I trade out that picture of a random sunset to a sunset picture that I took, it changes everything! Let’s say that I took the picture on the last day of a family trip… Now, everytime I look at that picture, I will remember the family trip and all of those amazing memories are brought to the surface again. If you are interested in creating a meaningful home and a home you love, I have given you a few suggestions and tips below to get you started!

Get your family involved
Think about the people you live with. If you have kids, you might want to add some of their special artwork around the house. If you have a significant other, make sure you consider what they want, as well. The home should be meaningful to everyone that lives in it and not just yourself.

Share your home with family and friends
No matter how ‘done’ your home is, make sure you share it with your family and friends! Host cookouts, summer parties and Christmas get togethers because when it comes down to it, what is the point in creating a meaningful home that you love if you do not get the chance to showcase it?! Afterall, when it comes down to it, isn’t life all about having fun with the ones that you love? Go ahead and host a get-together!

Incorporate meaningful decor
Incorporating meaningful decor is the easiest (and best in my opinion) way to create a meaningful home. The example I used above with the sunset picture is so true. If you have things that remind you of great memories, your home will always be happy. Here are a few ways I incorporate meaningful decor in my home:
Family artwork - artwork is a fantastic option that is special because it is passed down from generation to generation. It is also beautiful!
Decor from trips - this is also a great decor option because it reminds you of good times! You can frame pictures you took, or you can bring home souvenirs that also double as decor. For example, if you go to Italy, grab a hand blown glass pitcher. This is useful and meaningful, but it also doubles as decor.
Pictures with motivation words - this can be a good option because they are so positive and help create a happy home!
Special items - I have only touched on decor that is from family or from pictures you took, but great decor can also be purchased. If you love a specific sport, some sport decor in your basement or family room could be a great addition! If you someone in your family loves movies or video games, you could always give them a sword. You may be wondering what a sword has to do with videogames and movies. Swords of Northshire sells samurai swords, ninja swords, knives, custom swords, and accessories, but they also sell anime, movie, and video game replica swords! For example, they have a Deadpool Katana listed on their website. So cool! Imagine that displayed in your home!! When you customize your sword with Swords of Northshire, you have so many options like blade length, materia, tsuba, ito color, hamon type, engraving, fittings and more! You get the chance to customize it based on your likes, which is amazing and perfect for making your home meaningful.

Be able to do what you love
Creating a home that is meaningful is not just about the decor and what you put in it! Make sure you create the space you need, as well. If you love to work out in your home, make sure to have a space available for it! If you need a home office, make sure that is a priority. Whatever you need or want, make sure to make the space for it over some things that are typical “musts” to others.

Take it slow
I’m sure you know the saying “Rome wasn’t built in a day.” It’s the same for building a meaningful house - it definitely isn’t built in a day. Take your time and don’t rush, making sure you get everything you really want and do not just purchase filler items. Also, definitely keep in mind that as you age, your taste will definitely change, so make sure the items you choose are not just because of a trend.

Do you strive to create a meaningful home? What tips do you have?

7 Imperative Tips for Sleeping With Baby

According to the latest research, over half of moms and dads in the United States co-sleep with their babies. Even though the American Academy of Pediatrics strongly recommends parents not to sleep in the same bed with their gorgeous babies, the vast majority of families do just that. In fact, this trend is rising in 2017.

With more and more cases of infantile deaths due to co-sleeping, it is extremely important to ensure that your baby is safe when sleeping with his parents. Whether he sleeps only with you, with your spouse or with the both of you, it is your responsibility to make sure he gets the best sleep possible while being safe from harm.

Thus, as a parent, it is imperative to be aware on how to co-sleep with your baby. Your little one is fragile and you wouldn’t want to accidentally hurt him. Here are 7 tips for creating a safer sleeping space for your baby.

Sleeping Position

Place your baby on the back: this is the recommended position for sleeping for various reasons: you don’t want your baby to fall off the bed, you need it to breathe comfortably, and you want to have access to his face.

Sleeping Beds

Ensure the mattress is firm: do not put your baby on a pillow, waterbed mattress, sheepskin or any other similar surfaces. A foam mattress is highly recommended here. If the mattress is not firm, you could accidentally tumble over and land on your baby. Or at least one of your hands could, and that is advisable.
Ensure good sleeping environment

Remove any loose pillows, soft blankets or stuffed animals, especially if they are in the proximity of your baby’s face. It is imperative to ensure that your baby will get a good night’s sleep without the risk of suffocating.

Examine Perimeter

Check the perimeter: unfortunately, there are many cases of infantile deaths in adult beds. Most of them are due to the baby getting sandboxed between the sleeping surface (mattress) and a hard surface in its proximity. Make sure there is no wall, piece of furniture or headboard around your baby before co-sleeping with him.

Position of child while sleeping

Ensure your baby is located in the right position: the best position for your baby to sleep is on the side of the mom, as she is usually more responsive and more aware of the surroundings. Never put your baby in the middle or on the father’s side

Stop Smoking

Do not smoke or drink: smoking or drinking is prohibited when co-sleeping with your little one. Drinking and smoking are a major risk for your infant, both during the pregnancy and after it. We don’t even need to talk about drugs, which are strongly prohibited. Remember, drinking or getting stoned can make you less responsive and unable to control your movement while sleeping. If you want to protect your baby, give up these bad habits completely.

Use Bassinet or Crib

Go for a bassinet instead: of course, you could remove all worries regarding your baby’s safety while sleeping by choosing a bassinet or a crib. There are thousands of amazing bassinets for your baby available online, so you can choose the best model that complements your room d├ęcor and fits your needs.

Is eating Lebanese food good for you?

Is eating Lebanese food good for you?
Lebanese food has been widely embraced internationally. In Australia, high quality Lebanese restaurants such as Mezza Lebanese grill, provide tasty menus their customers. The food is all based on traditional cuisine from the country; but is it good for you?
The good news is that Lebanese dishes usually contain mainly fresh ingredients. This in itself means that when you eat at a Lebanese restaurant, you should be enjoying food that is good for you.
Why eating fresh produce is so beneficial
You have probably read about how important it is to include fresh fruit and vegetables in your regular diet. Doing so helps you to ingest vitamins and minerals that are essential for good health. If you are not a big fan of apples, oranges, peas, carrots and other items, you can get the benefits that you need, by enjoying them as part of a tasty Lebanese meal.
Why the use of olive oil is important
Many western countries use animal and vegetable fats in their cooking routines. The much healthier olive oil is used when Lebanese meals are made. This type of oil is healthier as it contains monounsaturated fatty acids. These are a type of unsaturated fat, as opposed to the saturated fats which can be found in other cooking oils.
Doing away with rich sauces
Many different types of cuisine make use of rich sauces, to add flavour and interest to a dish. These rich sauces are not something you want to eat a lot of, if you want to remain as healthy as possible. The flavours of Lebanese food are produced using a variety of herbs and spices. The meals taste amazing and the herbs and spices are a lot healthier to eat than a rich sauce.
One of the most popular elements of Lebanese cuisine is Za'atar, which is a mixture of spices. It's a flavour sensation that you have to experience to really appreciate it. Suffice to say, that you will not find many tastier food stuffs that are actually good for your health.
Every time you go for a meal in a Lebanese restaurant, you should be able to savour the fresh and exciting taste of the products used. One of the most popular products used in this style of cooking is lamb. Grass fed lamb is favoured, and you can really taste the difference that raising lamb in a healthy manner can make.
All too often, we find a food that we like which is actually not good for us to eat; at least not on a regular basis. It makes a pleasant change to find a cuisine that we can really enjoy, safe in the knowledge that we are not damaging our health while doing so. The fresh produce which is used in Lebanese restaurants actually helps to promote health, and the spices and herbs which are so widely used help to give the food the extra attraction of a mouth-watering flavour.