Thursday, March 19, 2015

ginnybakes: certified gluten-free, non-gmo, and organic treats

It's so hard for me to find really, really good gluten free treats that don't taste like chalk and that aren't gritty. So when I was given the opportunity to try out some ginnybakes treats I jumped all over it. 

Here is a little information about Ginny Bakes.

founded in 2010 by ginny simon, ginnybakes is the realization of a dream. combining ginny’s passion for nutrition, active living and baking, our products are a natural expression of her dedication to leading healthy, balanced lives.
we are ginnybakes. indulge mindfully. 
 our mission is to create outrageously delicious and nutritious organic, gluten-free, non-gmo treats the whole family can enjoy. for us, wellness is more than a term, it’s a way of life, a belief system, and a standard to which we hold ourselves accountable. that’s why ginnybakes ingredients are sourced with the utmost care and concern for what goes in to your body. after all, it is a beautiful machine, and we’ll do our part to make sure it only gets the good stuff.

ginnybakes is certified gluten free, organic, non gmo cookies and barsBeing gluten-free is the most important factor since we are a gluten free household. The fact that these snacks taste amazing and just like "real" cookies is wonderful! Kinsley loves the Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Bliss cookies. She inhaled many of them. lol

My absolute favorite cookie in the bunch? Butter Crisp. If the entire shipment was just filled with these cookies alone, I would have been happy. Picture your favorite sugar cookie and shortbread all in one and you'll have the Butter Crisp. I'm practically drooling just writing about them.

Everything is handmade and they are also certified kosher! I love that!

You know when you try something so good and you're just absolutely certain you'll never be able to find it anywhere ever again? Well luckily that's not the case! They are in stores all over and I'm thrilled to have found them in my local Whole Foods, that I already shop at. Hello more Butter Crisps!

In the box also came brownie mix and chocolate chip cookie mix. Kinsley and I have a date night every week where we do something she chooses to do, and this week it was bake brownies together! We made the ginnybakes brownie mix and they were delicious! Better than any other gluten free brownie I've ever had. Super moist and fluffy with a surprise chocolate chip or two! They were gone in about two days. Oops.

You should definitely check ginnybakes out and follow her along on Twitter and Instagram! You'll probably end up wanting to lick your computer or phone screen, so I apologize in advance.

this post was sponsored by ginnybakes. I received delicious cookies from ginnybakes for sharing my opinion. My opinions are my own and in no way influenced by ginnybakes or anyone else. Seriously, run out and get you some!

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

Weird Florida Laws

This month I'll be joining The Artcademy in her March Blog Challenge. Today's prompt is :
Share a fun fact about your state. It could be a weird law, an event that happens or silly fact.

This is going to be a good one. Florida alone is already weird so I can only imagine what ridiculous laws we have. ha! 

  • Doors of all public buildings must open outwards. I prefer the doors that I can push open. Because I'm lazy.
  • It is considered an offense to shower naked. This one baffles me because 9 possibly 10 months out of the year the majority of our population here is naked in PUBLIC. Or almost naked.
  • One must not break more than three dishes per day, or chip the edges of more than four cups and/or saucers per day. This is REAL y'all. So real. lol!
  • It is illegal to sing in a public place while dressed in a bathing suit. Again with the whole "majority of Florida being half naked" thing. So don't go busting out any Glee reenactments while you're here.
  • If an elephant is tied to a parking meter, the person who tied it there must pay the parking meter as if the elephant were a motor vehicle. So if you're planning on visiting Florida, please leave your elephants at home.
  • Men may not be seen in public in any sort of strapless gownFor those who are disappointed by this blatant example of discrimination, it is important to remember that the key word is “strapless.” The cap sleeve, halter, and spaghetti strap options are still perfectly legal.
  • In Daytona, it is illegal to molest a trash can. Please DO NOT molest a trash can. Nothing good can come from that. Also, you should probably stop drinking at this point and switch to water.
Aren't these hysterical? What weird laws do you know of in your state? PLEASE share! 

Monday, March 2, 2015

Bend the Rules: What Inspires You

In the midst of planning my daughter Kinsley's, 4th Birthday party, I have the opportunity to also share with you the awesomeness that is the "All About that Bass" Tour. Kins is a huge fan of Meghan Trainor and her hit song, "All About That Bass". It's on constant replay in the car and she sings it all.the.time at home. Really. All.the.time.

So while my daughter turns four and in sharing Meghan Trainor's new tour, I'm going to be sharing with you four things that inspire me to get my creative writing going when I hit the dreaded Bloggers writing block.

Writing a blog is hard work. It's especially hard when you're super busy with life and have a hard time focusing on your next topic. I've found that there a few constant things that always bring inspiration to me and give me what I need for great content.

1. Sunshine. I love, love, love natural light. I love windows and I love sunny days. When I find myself drawing a blank I know that as soon as I walk outside for a little stroll or sit by the window in the sunshine, I will always find something to write about it. It's almost automatic. The next time you're struggling to find content, walk outside and just listen to your surroundings.

2. Read other blogs. Sometimes other people's content will inspire your own content. Even if it's not remotely related, I can always find a trigger from another post. Something specific may remind you of something else and it snowballs from there. I get some of my best posts from reading others and being inspired. Remember copyright rules and laws though. Copying someone else's work is a no-no and it's not cool.

3. Pinterest. This goes in the same category as reading other blogs, however, sometimes I don't have time to read posts. Pinterest is a quick solution to finding something to blog about. There's thousands of ideas just waiting to be pinned. Make a board for blogging, ideas, inspiration, etc to always have something at hand when you're in a rut.

4. Run. I have nothing to do while running but to think. And possibly avoid getting hit by a vehicle. This is a great time to gather your thoughts and focus on what you could turn into a post. Running helps clear my head and let's me see things in a new light. When you're brain isn't jumbled neither is your writing. If running isn't your thing, any kind of physical activity works the same. Get up and get moving.

This post was inspired by the four ways you can use the new HP Pavilion x360. There are four modes which include the laptop, stand, tent, and my favorite, the tablet.

What I like best about the HP Pavilion x350 is that it's so versatile and easy to take with you. For a mom on the go, HP has made it easy to work (or play!) where ever you go. If you're someone who loves to listen to music then this is also the laptop for you. Equipped with Beats Audio, you get a crisp and clear listening experience.

I switch between laptop and tablet mode the most. Tablet mode makes it easy to pin and read while laptop mode makes it easy to do homework and blog!

In the spirit of bending the rules, HP has partnered with Meghan Trainor to document her first-ever tour with "All About That Bass Tour," a six episode documentary of the "That Bass" Tour. In each episode, HP will offer a glimpse at what goes on behind the scenes--focusing on everything from tour life to the tour's costumes.

I think it's great that some of my personal favorite viners are featured as well! 

What inspires you to get past your writers block and create fun content? 

This #bendtherules moment has been created in partnership with HP. This is a sponsored post and I was given an HP Pavilion x360 & compensated for participating. All opinions in this post are honest and my own. HP had no say in what was posted in this #bendtherules post.

Monday, February 23, 2015

My Story Preserved: Project Repat

A few weeks ago I posted about this awesome company called "Project Repat". They turn old t-shirts into a t-shirt quilt. Which is great if you have tons of race shirts like I did or lots of shirts that meant something but you just can't bear to throw or give them away.

I gathered my pile of shirts that I wanted to preserve and sent them off to the Project Repat team. I'll tell you that it was extremely bittersweet because I knew I was getting something amazing in return but it was so hard to part with some of them. Like my Air Force PT shirt and my husbands desert cami top that he wore for several tours in Iraq and Afghanistan. (They were so awesome and sent that back though after taking what they needed!) I also threw in some "Runners for Boston" shirts, my first half marathon shirt, Florida Gator shirts (of course), my first Southeastern Law shirt, and of course, tons of race shirts. I think I was anxious the entire time waiting for the quilt to come back.

When it arrived on my doorstep, I was so excited that I cried when I opened it. It was perfect! The time that this team takes to make something of such great quality and care definitely shows in the product.The whole process was super easy. They spell everything out for you in an easy "to-do" list to help make sure you've got everything that's needed. I honestly think the hardest part was waiting for it to come back as a quilt! After a week and a half went by I received the quilt so even the wait time wasn't bad at all!

I'm so happy that I now have all of my meaningful shirts in one place and not collecting dust in my closet anymore. Now I can look at it everyday and smile because it holds so much meaning to my husband and I. My next quilt from Project Repat will be one with all of Kinsley's monogrammed baby clothes.

If you have tons of shirts that you want to do something with but not get rid of then you should definitely go to Project Repat! And if you do, use code "repatfriend" at checkout for 15% off!

Please share with me if you do have one made! I'd love to see it!

*This is a sponsored post. Project Repat  provided me with a free quilt. The opinions are my own. Project Repat did not tell me what to say or how to say it.

Friday, February 20, 2015

Becoming a Better Wife

marriage, becoming a better wife

I don't do it often on the blog but I need to take a minute to brag about my husband. This past week I had my wisdom teeth and two other teeth pulled. It hasn't been nearly as bad as I thought it would be but still painful at times. My husband has literally done everything. And I mean everything. He's been my rock and has gone non stop since we came home from the dentist. The house is clean, laundry is done, he has gone to pick up my favorite soup numerous times and copious amount of ice cream. There hasn't been a single time where he's even been late in giving me my medicine (even though I am fully capable of doing it myself.) I have to sneak in getting up off the couch when he's sleeping. lol! He's been amazing! He says it's what husbands are supposed to do but I can't help but keep thinking, "How did I get so lucky?". Can I also throw in that he bought a box of Tagalongs Girl Scout cookies (my absolute favorite!) for "when I can eat normally again"?

I don't brag about him nearly enough but Lord knows I love this man more than anything! To think that we've known each other since High School and yet never dated and didn't even think about it until way after just blows my mind. He's everything I have always dreamed of and everything you want in a husband. I can't wait to grow old with this man. I wish he had hundreds of brothers to share with some of you ladies (lol) because every woman deserves to be treated the way my husband treats me. I don't deserve it 90% of the time at all but his love and affection never ceases.

Have you seen Mandy's new endeavor with her husband? "Marriage More"? J and I are both big fans of it and follow it everyday. They post constant reminders and great tips! Recently, Mandy posted "13 ways to become a better wife".  While I think I'm a pretty good wife I think I can always improve! Especially when you have a husband like mine! Here are a few of my favorites that I've been applying to every day:

Like Mandy, I am constantly asking myself (and J ha!) how he puts up with me. I'm a spit fire, hot head, and a firecracker. Seriously. I blame me being Scottish but it definitely needs work. I like to call it passionate, but potato pa-tat-toe.

One thing I absolutely do not tolerate is people talking bad about my husband or my family. You will never find me bad mouth my husband, bring him down, talk about our issues publicly, or talk down to him to others at all. I do nothing but lift him up and brag about him. I feel like the issues you may have need to stay between the two of you and be worked out together. We all have them and it solves nothing by bringing others into it in a negative way.

Another thing that I need to work (hard) on is "giving him direction (without being bossy). I'm the oldest of 4 (all girls as well) and well, it's natural for me to be bossy. Take today for example, J was helping and did the laundry. Typically this is my chore because I don't mind but I also have my own system in doing it. Moms, you know what I'm talking about. Well, he put ALL of the clothes in one load. Jeans with WHITES. Whites with darks. Jeans with darks. A towel was involved. It was bad. Once I realized what he did I confronted him about it. I made sure to tell him that I know he was trying to help and I DO appreciate it! However, PLEASE NEVER DO THE LAUNDRY AGAIN. lol He said, "I just need directions on how to do it and then I can still help." So when I read this from Mandy, that we have to give directions without being bossy it opened my eyes. I'd much rather do it myself because, come on ladies, we know it will be done right. But if I give him directions, it's another load (no pun intended) that I may not have to bear one busy day of wrangling littles and doing schoolwork. Plus hello? Husband wants to help! Don't turn that down. lol

 The last thing I'm making a effort on is "Trusting His Decisions". Again, bossy and control freak in some things makes it hard to trust other people's decisions. Especially when you're bossy and think you have it all figured out. Sometimes I don't trust his decisions or let him take the lead because I'm scared it won't be the right one. It's important to let your husband have an equal role and that he feels like he's contributing in the decisions of your life together and marriage. This is my biggest thing that needs work.

I really love that Mandy and Jeff have put this together. Not only is she an amazing person and friend, they have such an awesome and Godly relationship that sets a great example.

Have you read this post on "Marriage More"? What do you currently need to work on with your husband?