Wednesday, July 13, 2011

10 Tips For On The Go Moms

Can you believe how fast summer is flying by?  When you're constantly on the go, that's what happens.... time flies!
We spend a lot of our summer doing day trips, visiting family, play dates, catching up on dr and dentist visits, and the dreaded running errands. 
My toddler isn't in sports and extra activities yet but I know many that are running to VBS, ball games, practices, lessons, and more so I know I'm not the only one running the roads these days.

AND, when I'm on the go a lot, I tend to get unorganized, stay tired, spend more money, and stay stressed.  And let's face it, a tired, stressed out momma with no shoe shopping money is not a pretty picture. 

So I've got 10 tips making both mine and your life easier and more efficient while on the go!

1.  I have Monkey's bag always ready by her door with wipes, a bottled water, book, game, and sunglasses for when we will be in the car a bit.  So when I'm running out the door I don't have to stop and pack it up, I've already made it a habit to keep it packed and ready.

2.  I keep baggies of fruit and raw veggies in the fridge.  I like to cut them out and we can grab a few and have healthy snacks on the go AND I'm not spending more money by stopping at the gas station or running through the drive through.

3.  I set my iphone calendar to go off with appointments that not only tells me what I'm going to but I include the address and phone number so I just click on the address and my google maps pulls it up and give me directions from my location.

4.  Be Gumby!  You know the flexible green guy.  Yes be flexible, if things need to change in the middle of what you have planned, just go with it.  Try not to sweat it and know that having a schedule is great, but sometimes getting off schedule can be a fun adventure!

5.  MAKE A LIST!!  If I'm out running errands I have a list of the places I'm going and the things I'm picking up.  This helps me from over spending and getting home and realizing I forgot something. 

6.  Combine errands for when I'm going to be out and about.  I don't want to have to get out of the house and in the heat everyday so if we have an appointment or play date scheduled, I go ahead and schedule my errands around those.  This saves me time and gas money!

7.  On days I'm going to be on the go I make sure to get up as early as possible.  One reason is to make sure I've got everything ready to go, but more importantly so that I can spend some quality quite time before my day gets loud and hectic.

8.  DON'T over schedule.  Between birthday parties, play dates, activities, family visits, you can quickly find yourself forgetting what your husband or house looks like.  It's ok to say no to an invite and try again another time.

9.  Prepare Ready Made Meals.  Take one day of the week and put together a few ready made meals that can be frozen and then just popped in the oven so when you get home from a long day of on the go, supper is practically ready.  Some of my favs are Lasagna, Baked Spaghetti, King Ranch Chicken, and Enchilladas. 

10. COFFEE!! All the running around tends to keep me tired so a little pick up of Seattle's Canned Iced Latte always does the trick to keep me going when my body is wanting to shut down. I like to have a little cooler in the Jeep and pull one out if I'm waiting in the Dr's office or out at a park play date. Keeps me refreshed and alert!

So what do you do to make your life easier on the go?  I hope this list helps you out, I know I'm going to take my own advise and use these tips and put more time, money, and energy in my pocket!!!!
I know something else that can make life easier is coupons and Seattle's Best Coffee has great coffee and great coupons for my readers. 
About Seattle’s Best Coffee

As coffee blenders and roasters since 1970, we’ve seen a lot come and go. We went from a tiny shop on the Seattle waterfront to being declared Seattle’s Best Coffee in a local competition. In 2003, we joined the Starbucks family which has allowed us to place more resources into further honing our special way of crafting delicious, impossibly smooth coffee. Every step of the process, from coffee cherry to your cup, is managed to fit our exacting standards and our premium approach to coffee. Now, we’re making it easier to find your perfect coffee with our new Level System.

Save $1.50 on a 4 pack today!
It’s low calorie: Just 130 calories per can.

It’s affordable: A premium latte for just $1.49? And a 4-pack is an even better deal, at just $4.99.

It’s everywhere: Available in major grocery, convenience and other retail stores.

More info on Seattle’s Best Coffee:

Seattle’s Best Coffee on Facebook:

Follow @SeattlesBest on Twitter
“I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Seattle’s Best Coffee blogging program for a gift card worth $30. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Mama Mia I Heart Pasta!

If I had to choose one food to eat for the rest of my life it would be pasta!  I mean who doesn't love pasta? And there's so much that you can do with it.  It is a go to staple in my kitchen and I never feel like I'm eating the same thing over and over.  I love creating something fantastic with pasta but what I love even more is going out to eat and having it served to me on a big platter.  And when we go out for Italian I love going to Carrabba's. 

So in my day dreaming of plates of spaghetti and lasagna I went over to Carrabba's Facebook page and took their Pasta Personality Quiz. 
 My pasta personality is Spaghetti which means that I'm genuine and well loved, like Carrabba’s Spaghetti and Meatballs. Your warm and comforting personality makes you everybody’s best friend. So go for our equally popular hand-prepared meatballs over perfectly cooked imported spaghetti.
I'd say that is pretty darn accuarate of my personality.

I do love me some spaghetti but one of my go to favorite dishes to make with pasta is
Creamy Tomato Chicken Spaghetti:
When I first got married I was constantly looking for recipes that would look homemade, taste like I slaved all day, but be easy peasy!  And this one always did the trick.  Poppa would always think I had this simmering away all day and praise me after he ate 2 bowls full.  I still haven't let him on the secret of how easy it is. 

What You Need
1/2 lb. spaghetti, uncooked

2 cups frozen stir-fry vegetables

1 Tbsp. oil

1 lb. boneless skinless chicken breasts, cut into strips

1 can (14.5 oz.) diced tomatoes, undrained

1/4 cup  Italian Dressing ( I prefer using the zesty kind)

1/2 cup  Cream Cheese or cream cheese Spread

1/4 cup  Grated Parmesan Cheese

COOK spaghetti in large saucepan as directed on package, adding stir-fry vegetables to the boiling water for the last 3 min.

MEANWHILE, heat oil in large nonstick skillet on medium-high heat. Add chicken and cook stirring occasionally. Stir in tomatoes and dressing and bring to boil. Simmer on medium heat for about 5 min., stirring occasionally. Add cream cheese and cook and stir until cream cheese is completely melted and mixture is well blended.
DRAIN spaghetti mixture; place in large bowl. Add chicken mixture; toss to coat. Sprinkle with Parmesan. Serve in pasta bowls with a side salad and garlic bread and viola you are going to get lots of kisses for the cook.

What's your favorite pasta recipe?  Ready to see what your personality would be?  Check out the Carrabba's Pasta Personality Test yourself.

Now that I probably have your mouth watering for some pasta, Carrabba's has got some amazing signature dishes and limited time offers to tease you with as well. 

Signature Pasta Meals, featuring seven distinctive dishes served with choice of soup or fresh salad starting at $10. There’s no better place than Carrabba’s to enjoy a complete Italian meal – any day of the week.

CARRABBA’S PASTA: Carrabba’s makes every pasta dish by hand with the freshest ingredients. Pasta is cooked perfectly every time and signature sauces are made from scratch daily. Creative flavors and combinations of ingredients are part of Carrabba’s authentic family recipes as well as new creations.

LIMITED TIME OFFERS: Now through July 2011.

Featured Signature Pasta Meal:

Pasto Rambo – Named for the chef who created it, it’s made with shrimp tossed with imported Italian linguine, spinach, mushrooms, and tomatoes sautéed in our basil lemon butter sauce. Lobster is available instead of shrimp for an additional cost.

Other Limited Time Offers:

Parmesan-crusted Chicken – Topped with fresh arugula and grape tomatoes tossed in a hand-prepared lemon vinaigrette, served with choice of side. Substitution of wood-grilled chicken also available. Pairs well with Estancia Pinot Grigio.

Prosciutto-Wrapped Pork Tenderloin – Three pork tenderloin medallions wrapped with prosciutto, wood-grilled and topped with an apple and fig infused port wine sauce, served with the vegetable of the day. Pairs well with Coppola Pinot Noir.

Limoncello Bread Pudding – Back by popular demand! Brioche bread pudding made with fresh Madagascar vanilla beans and a rich custard, served hot out of the oven. Topped with Blue Bell vanilla ice cream and drizzled with Carrabba’s homemade Caravella Limoncello liqueur sauce.

Now Introducing:

Peach Sangria – Carrabba’s new light and fruity Peach Sangria blends Copper Ridge White Zinfandel, Absolut Apeach vodka and Patrón Citrónge with a splash of citrus. Topped with a fresh lemon wedge and strawberry, it’s a taste of the Amalfi Coast in spring.

Locations: Visit for the closest Carrabba’s location. There are more than 230 locations nationwide.

I know we all love making wonderful dishes for our families but when those time arise for you to be served and enjoy a meal out, consider Carrabba's and have an extra special family time together.   They will take the time to create something amazing for you and leave you singing Mama Mia I Heart Carrabba's!


“I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms and Carrabba’s blogging program, for a gift card worth $50. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”

Be sure to show Carrabba's some Love:
Follow Carrabba’s on Twitter: @Carrabba’s
Carrabba’s on Facebook:

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Blogmania Is Here! CLOSED - Winner Announced

Blogmania is Closed and I had a blast.  Thank you to all of my sponsors and to all of you who entered.  I really wish I could give something to all of you.  I have gone through the entries and worked on verifying every entry and my eyes are crossed and I'm tired but I'm happy to announce a winner. 
Congrats to Mom to Three, you are my Blogmania winner.  Please check your inbox. If my winner does not confirm, a new winner will be drawn!

It's Here It's Here, Blogmania is finally Here!  I am so excited and hope you are too!  Thank you for stopping by and entering and showing all of my sponsors some Texas Monkey Love! 
Let's get started.

My Theme is Pinkalicious.  Every girl whether it's a newborn or a grandma can use a little pink in their life.  There is power in pink ya know!  My prize package is over $300 and is filled with not only pink items but items that will make you feel pretty and loved!  And you are! 

Sponsor #1
With summer right around the corner everyone is getting ready for swim suit season.  Whether it's for you or for your little girl, you are sure to find something Pinkalicious at Swim Spot.  Swim Spot is giving my winner a $100 Gift Certificate to their store. 

Sponsor #2

Misty from Thirty One Gifts wants my winner to take their lunch to work or school in style with a lunch tote.  Thank you Misty!

Sponsor #3

Misty also knows that you can't have a Pinkalicious theme without the ultimate Pink Mary Kay gift.  She's offering my winner a $25 gift certificate to her Mary Kay site. 

Sponsor #4

Cari, owner of CCARIA Jewelry is giving my winner this beautiful baby blue pearl necklace.  It's one of a kind and even though it's not pink, it's sure to make any girl feel pretty!  Thank you Cari.

Sponsor #5
Cheri from Orglamix is offering my winner their choice of 3 eyeshadows.  And with the new Champagne Bubbles added to the line, I know you are going to have a hard time picking just three.  I want them all!

Sponsor #6
Mable Labels is everyone's answer to losing "stuff!"  Your child will love these little cuties that dress up his or her possessions and you will love not losing their stuff in a sea of cups and backpacks at school.

Sponsor #7
EverSave is where you can get awesome deals at half the price and what better way to get started than a $10 credit on your account! 

Sponsor #8
Glenda is offering my winner a $10 gift certificate to purchase a book for your little reader and help you make memories of sharing reading time together.  Thank you Glenda.

Sponsor #9
Texas Monkey is providing this beautiful Pinkalicious Petti Skirt Set with crochet bodice and hand rolled rosette headband for your little monkey AND mom will receive a matching hand rolled rosette necklace.

Mandatory Entry

Tell me in a comment what prize you are most excited about.  Please make this a real comment, not a generic, "I want to win"  My sponsors have worked hard at providing for this giveaway and I'd like for us to show them som true love!

Bonus Entries ( 1 Each)

Like me on Facebook
Follow me on GFC

Leave a comment for each entry, 3 entries total.

Please note that Texas Monkey, Blogmania or the Blogmania bloggers are not responsible for sponsors that do not fulfill their prizes. We have represented each sponsor with the expectation they will fulfill their prize and in a timely manner we will... contact the sponsor regarding your prize(s). The sponsors, in most cases, are shipping their items to me to send one big winner's package to you. We will make every effort to assist you obtaining your prize. If there is an issue with a sponsor please notify the blog you won a prize from within 30 days for assistance, after that we may be unable to assist you.

Happy Blogmania Weekend Ya'll

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Blogmania Sponsor Spotlight: Mabel's Lables

My Monkey loves "stuff!"  She loves filling a bag or purse with "her stuff."  Her stuff consists of books, cups, bowls, crayons, anything she feels is "stuff" worthy.  I catch myself saying "my stuff" so at least she gets it honestly.  Well when she's toting her bag of stuff every where we go, it's easy to lose some of it or get it mixed up with another child's bag of stuff.  So I'm constantly pulling my hair out and getting frustrated not only at losing stuff but at stickers and lables not staying put.
That is until I found Mabel's Lables!
I was sent a great set of Label Out Loud Sticky Lables to review.

Choose the name, up to 20 characters, and the design from 20 different motifs. I chose the pink princess for my Monkey. They are bright and fun. I was quick to label all of her "stuff."
This line is:
Dishwasher safe

Microwave safe

UV resistant

Peel and stick

In need of labels in other areas? Mabel's Labels has you covered. From clothing, skinny labels, bag tags, household labels, etc. There is something for all of your labeling needs.

I am excited to have Mabel's Labels as one of my Blogmania Sponsors (April 9-11). One of my lucky readers will receive a set like mine from the Label Out Loud Stick Labels with the name and motif of your choice ($21 value).

Connect with Mabel's Labels online
Follow them on Twitter
Like them on Facebook : Mabel's Labels
Follow their Blog

Monday, April 4, 2011

All About You Monday Party and Giveaway

It's Time For All About You Monday! Our weekly session where we get to show off our projects and creations.

Texas Monkey

But first I have a great giveaway for you and want to introduce you to one of Texas Monkey's Blogmania sponsors.
Misty from Thirty - One Gifts and Mary Kay has some great goodies in store for a winner on this giveaway AND on the Blogmania giveaway.  How great is she?!

Misty is a local consultant for these 2 great companies but no fear if you don't live near her, shipping is available and so reasonable. 
One winner on this giveaway is going to win a fun and trendy lunch tote from Thirty-One Gifts AND a $25 gift certificate to use at Mary Kay on Misty's site!  I don't know about you but with Mother's Day right around the corner both of these great products would make great gifts to any mom including yourself!

Please note that design you will receive varies.

So how do you enter?
  • Sign Up for Misty's Thirty-One Gifts Website to receive all the latest info and news by leaving your email in the comment section so that Misty can add you to her email blasts.
  • Sign Up for Misty's Mary Kay Website to receive all the latest info and news
Bonus Entry to win a Thermal Bag
  • Refer 3 friends to sign up under your name and you are entered into a seperate drawing for the bag. 
Leave a seperate comment for each entry.  Misty will verify with me the winner did sign up before I announce them.

Winner will have 48 hours to respond, contest ends on April 9th.  US only.  I was not provided any compensation or products to run this giveaway. 
Good Luck
NOW, Let's see what you've been working on.
  • Link up to your post, not to your main blog.
  • Link up your craft, DIY, project, recipe, party, or post about you.
  • Grab the button and put on your post or sidebar.
  • Enjoy visiting other post link ups and learning more about fellow bloggers and tell them you're visiting from All About You.
  • I will choose the features from those that carry the button on their post or sidebar and that visit and comment on the other link ups.
  • If you follow me let me know in a comment so that I can follow you back.

Happy Monday Ya'll

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Orglamix review and giveaway Blogmania Sponsor

I was given the opportunity to review some mineral eyeshadow from an Etsy shop called Orglamix.

I love mineral make-up and love that Cheri makes all her own products! I was surprised at how the vibrant the colors are. You can go really subtle or bright and dynamic. Choosing the colors to test was not easy. I spent hours browsing as I LOVE makeup, LOVED her color choices, and LOVE shopping.  But I finally decided on a charcoal, a shimmer white, and a raspberry.   The cosmetics arrived beautifully packaged in a satin bag, in sleek black-lidded shaker jars with scented rose petals. She puts such care into the packaging, I was very impressed.

About the Shop:

Welcome to the next-generation of mineral makeup. With products made from zero synthetic ingredients,  Orglamix Cosmetics has become a huge sucess.  Orglamix is an Etsy shop that sells makeup made from 100% pure mineral. Cheri, the artisan behind Orglamix, never uses synthetic materials so you can be sure they are safe, especially for those of us with sensitive skin. Cheri says, “All Orglamix products are proudly formulated without: nano particles, bismuth oxychloride, synthetic dyes, petrochemicals or parabens. Orglamix is a proud member of PETA.”

What is more important, quality or value?  At Orglamix, they say both!  And that is exactly what you will get with every Orglamix product. Each product is of the highest quality and the greatest value compared to mega beauty brands.  The affordable prices will allow you room to try a variety of colors.  With over 200 choices, you are sure to find a few you love.

According to a recent survey: 99% of women who tried Orglamix said they’d recommend it to friends. But don't take their word for it.  Try Orglamix risk-free. They guarantee you will LOVE it or they will refund your money . Sign up for the Orglamix Newsletter to stay up-to-date on all upcoming promotions, sales, and new products.  Join them on Facebook for fun Beauty discussions, color challenges, and color of the week specials.

Be sure to Like Orglamix on Facebook and show them some sponsor love.

Orglamix Believes:

♥ That six deep breaths a day can improve your life.

♥ We are all beautiful inside and out.

♥ It's important to speak your mind from your heart.

♥ A good laugh should be an essential ingredient to your day


Mineral Makeup Maestra

Cheri is great and is offering a set of 3 eye shadows in the color of your choice to my Blogmania winner.  How cool is that?  So be sure to come back April 9th and get entered to win.  I'm having over $300 prize package with a theme of Pinkalicious because every girl needs a little pink in their life!

Friday, April 1, 2011

Blogmania Sponsor - SwimSpot!

Are you aware of how close summer is?  And that means swim suit season is close.  I'm trying not to freak out about the 1000 crunches I need to be doing before I will even attempt to step in a bathing suit.  Every year I say I'm going to work out and get ready and before you know it, it's August and I'm still sporting my muffin top!  Oh well.  In the mean time I love browsing around the net for cute bathing suits I can dream about looking good in.  And is a site I love visiting. 

SwimSpot is the #1 best women’s swim wear and bathing suit web boutique in the world. And the suits featured on the site are designed and produced in the U.S.A.

About SwimSpot features a great selection of one piece swimsuits, bikini tops and bottoms, and swimsuit cover-ups with a wide spectrum of styles and fits for women looking to purchase the perfect suit for the swim season.  AND they also have a little girl's line.  Since I'm not ready to stuff my rolls into their fabulous suits yet I got my daughter this awesome suit for this summer.  How adorable is that?  I'm making her matching flip flops and bow to rock it out this summer!

But if you are looking for a suit for you then you have to check out the Bikini Builder. created the Bikini Builder application because they know that their customers not only want to shop the racks, but also want to play designer and come up with fresh looks to help them standout in a crowd. You can mix and match from hundreds of swimwear tops and bottoms.

I love how their site is filled with every design, style, and fit to accomadate every figure, shape, and size.  I adore their cover ups and their sales pretty much rock!!  Their customer service and shipping is top notch and this is a store and website I will be sharing with all my friends. 

AND I'm so excited to announce that SwimSpot is a Blogmania Sponsor for Texas Monkey.  That means that one lucky reader will win a $100 gift certificate to SwimSpot.  With summer so close, I know this will come in handy.
Happy & Healthy

Blogmania will take place starting April 9th and ending April 11th. Be sure to come back and enter to win this and so much more on my blog!
In the mean time stop by SwimSpot and let me know what suit you'd like if you won and please show this sponsor some love by:
Like SwimSpot on Facebook

Follow SwimSpot on Twitter

This contest ends April 11, 2011 at 11:59pm. The winner will be chosen using
Good Luck!
This review is 100% my opinion alone and has not been edited or reviewed by anyone. I was given a bathing suit to review but not paid for this review.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Apothica $25 Gift Card Giveaway

I am so excited to introduce to you awesome readers, Apothica!  If you already know about this amazing company then you're going to love this giveaway.  If you've never heard of of Apothica, then allow me to enlighten you, and then you'll love this giveaway too!  Apothica is an online beauty boutique, which carries the best products you will find, including one of my all time FAVS Becca Makeup.  Reese Witherspoon is one of my fav all time gals and pretty much anything she wears that's within my budget I will try and so that's how I came to know BECCA. And since BECCA is sold at Apothica, you can call me a very happy chica!

My ABSOLUTE Favorite item is the Jewel Dust.  I love the light weight shimmer and pop it gives to eyes.
Apothica has so many brands, products, and fun offered in their shop.  A girl can never have too much fun with makeup in my opinion!  They carry all the hottest brands including GloMinerals, Clinique, Paul & Joe, and more!”  Don't wear makeup?, well they have hair products, men products, skin care and more.  This company knows how important health is to us and so they are dedicated to providing you with high quality products formulated to promote and enhance your natural beauty.

So are you ready to win yourself a $25 gift card to pamper yourself a little bit? 

Entries (Enter 1, 2, or all 3)

  • Visit Apothica THEN Write on Apothica's Facebook Wall about what you think of Apothica and what products you like.  (1 Entry)
  • Visit Apothica THEN Tweet a Tweet from your own Twitter Account about Apothica. (1 Entry)
  • ReTweet this Tweet from Apothica (2 Entries)
  • Visit Apothica THEN Write something on your blog about what you think of Apothica (3 Entries)

  • Bonus Entry: Write about the brand I highlighted and link it to Apothica (2 Entries)
Be sure to leave a comment for each entry.

This contest will run for 14 days and end on April 13th.  Winner will be drawn via and notified via email and have 48 hours to respond.  Apothica will contact the winner to verify information is correct.  A code will be emailed to the winner to redeem.  Contest is open internationally but Apothica does not ship to all countries.  Please add SkinCareRX as a contact in your email so that you don't miss the newsletter or winner info. 

Good Luck and Happy Wednesday Ya'll

Monday, March 28, 2011

All About You Link Up Party

It's Time For All About You Monday! Our weekly session where we get to show off our projects and creations. 

Texas Monkey

NOW, Let's see what you've been working on.

  • Link up to your post, not to your main blog.
  • Link up your craft, DIY, project, recipe, party, or post about you.
  • Grab the button and put on your post or sidebar.
  • Enjoy visiting other post link ups and learning more about fellow bloggers and tell them you're visiting from All About You.
  • I will choose the features from those that carry the button on their post or sidebar and that visit and comment on the other link ups.
  • If you follow me let me know in a comment so that I can follow you back.
Happy Monday Ya'll

Monday, March 21, 2011

All About You Link Up Party

It's Time For All About You Monday! Our weekly session where we get to show off our projects and creations. 

Texas Monkey

NOW, Let's see what you've been working on.

  • Link up to your post, not to your main blog.
  • Link up your craft, DIY, project, recipe, party, or post about you.
  • Grab the button and put on your post or sidebar.
  • Enjoy visiting other post link ups and learning more about fellow bloggers and tell them you're visiting from All About You.
  • I will choose the features from those that carry the button on their post or sidebar and that visit and comment on the other link ups.
  • If you follow me let me know in a comment so that I can follow you back.

Happy Monday Ya'll

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Blogmania Sponsor - CCARIA Jewelry

I am so excited about Blogmania, do you realize it's just right around the corner?!  Man do I have some amazing prizes lined up for you lucky readers!  Over the next few weeks I will be highlighting my sponsors and their products just to tease you a little of what's to come!  I hope you show them some love and support as they are really hooking you up!

Let's give a big TEXAS Monkey welcome to Cari of CCARIA Jewelry!  Cari started making jewelry as a hobby because she needed something she could do to unwind. Next thing she knew she was overrun with pieces. She was giving them to friends and family to get their reactions and everyone told her that they were wonderful and that she should start selling them. Years later, she still enjoys making pieces for friends and family, they are often her best advertisers! But nothing is more thrilling to her than to be out in public somewhere and seeing a piece of her own jewelry on a total stranger. It's so rewarding!

Please tell us all a little bit about yourself and your store, Cari.

What Kinds of products do you offer?

CCARIA jewelry consists of one-of-a-kind earrings, necklaces and bracelets. (I will replicate a piece if requested, but mainly do one-of-a-kind items) I also have a section of Awareness jewelry for both Breast Cancer Awareness, my mother died of breast cancer, (proceeds go to the American Cancer Society or Susan Komen Fund) and Diabetes Awareness (my son has Type 1 Diabetes and all proceeds go to JDRF). I really enjoy using natural stones, like freshwater pearls, jasper, quartz, agate and more. But I also like using beautiful colors of Czech pressed glass.

Describe your typical client?

I'm not sure I have a typical client. I think it’s anywhere from the girly girl that likes big bright and bold pieces, to someone that just likes something simple. I try to make a wide range of pieces for everyone's style, from beaded necklaces and bracelets to sterling silver and antiqued brass. I love doing custom orders too, and I think people really enjoy getting a piece made exactly the way they want it and they know that no one else has it.

How long have you been in business?

I have been making jewelry as a hobby for a while but it became a “business” in August 09. I still consider it my hobby, as I enjoy every minute of it, and do it in my free time.

What sets your business apart from other's in your niche?

Honestly I'm not sure. But what I think sets my business apart is that I try to always use natural stones, I offer low and competitive prices and I always provide excellent customer service.

What is your most popular product?

Since I don't make duplicate pieces, I would have to say that overall necklaces in general seem to be the hot item. Freshwater pearls are also very popular, especially in bold bright colors.

What inspires you?

I actually get my inspiration from colors. No matter where I am I notice other people’s clothing and the jewelry they are wearing and then I start working on different pieces in my mind based on the colors around me. Sometimes I just feel bright and happy and I tend to make pieces around that feeling etc. It varies from day to day.

Where do you see your business heading in the future?

I really can't predict where it will go in the future. Right now I'm happy with it being a hobby and a creative outlet from my everyday life. I enjoy creating pieces and being able to offer them to people at an affordable price. Because this is a passion for me, I’m not sure that I want it to be a “full time job". I love doing it so much, because it is pressure free for me.

What countries do you ship from?

Right now I ship free within the US and I ship to Canada for a small fee.

How can people find you online?

At and on Twitter at

Now what could one of you lucky readers win?  How about this gorgeous one of a kind necklace!

It's an 18 inch necklace made up of baby blue freshwater pearls wire wrapped on an antiqued brass chain.

Valued at $25.
Now show Cari some love and follow her on Twitter and stop by her STORE for some online shopping, did you catch she does FREE shipping, HELLO, I'm sold!

Thank you Cari for being one of our Blogmania Sponsors.

Happy Thursday Ya'll

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

A Kitchen Lover's New BFF!

Have you seen this amazing little baby?!  I am so excited about The Bag Holder and how it is going to change my life and time spent in the kitchen! 

If you have learned anything about me by reading my blog, you've learned that I LOVE to make memories with my Monkey.  It's my passion and motivation in doing most things.  So when I was told that The Bag Holder will not only help me make memories with my child in the kitchen but that it would also do it without the mess, I was pretty much sold right then and there.  However, it does so much more for us kitchen lovers.

With the help from her mom Carol, Kara, a mom herself of 2 and a Breast Cancer Fighter and Survivor began her adventure of bringing to us The Bag Holder. 

Let me give you the low down of what all this little baby can and will do for you:

  • Minimize the steps it takes to put together meals
  • Easily transfer food in plastic storage bags and minimize clean up
  • Create with your Kids in the Kitchen and enjoy making meals with your family
  • Assemble freezer meals for OAMC (Once A Month Cooking) in half the time
  • Take camping and boating to make meal prep and clean up a breeze
  • Make hundreds of recipes, including cakes, cookies and piping desserts
  • Marinate meat and eliminate contamination of raw meats on counters
  • Minimize the space needed for food storage by using bags not plastic containers
  • Reheat leftovers effortlessly in the Bag Holder
  • Wash, reuse and recycle the bags using The Bag Holder
  • Where ever you need a bowl replace it with The Bag Holder
  • Store leftovers easily and mess free
  • Breakdown bulk items with no more messy counters and contaminate free
  • Save on your monthly electric and water bills by using fewer dishes and less water
  • Buy and prepare meals in bulk to cut grocery costs
So how does it work?
The Bag Holder is like having a personal assistant in the kitchen.  It works by holding your gallon sized storage bags open so you can easily assemble or pour your ingredients hands free and build your meals quickly with little to no clean up.

Change the way you’ve been making meals with The Bag Holder!

I love how their site has Kid friendly recipes that you and your child can make together, videos showing you all about it, and Cooking 101 with all kinds of tips, notes, and fun!

You can Buy yours nowfor $19.95 which comes with 20 recipes and a DVD and shipping will begin on April 15th but you also have a chance to win one.
They are giving 3 away so check out how you could win HERE.

Let's show this Mom/Daughter Team our love and support!
Like them on Facebook
Follow on Twitter

Please tell em Texas Monkey sent you! 

Monday, March 14, 2011

All About You Link Up Party - Rainbow Cupcakes

It's Time For All About You Monday! Our weekly session where we get to show off our projects and creations. 

Texas Monkey

St Patrick's Day is this Thursday and you can check out my Macaroni Kid site for all kinds of fun to enjoy with your family. One way you can make memories with your monkies on March 17th is making some yummy Rainbow Cupacakes. And no rainbow is complete without a leperchaun leaving some gold.

Cake batter of choice
4 different food colors
Candy wrapped in gold (gold coins, Roll-O's, etc)

Make your batter as you normally would for cupcakes and divide the batter into 4 bowls.

Add drops of food color to each bowl. I used yellow, green, blue, and red.

Layer your batter into your lined cupcake pan one at a time in any order of choice. I did blue, red, green, then yellow on top. (As you can see from the picture it doesn't have to be pretty or neat and when you are letting a 2 year old help I assure you it is not going to be either but FUN it will be!)

Bake according to directions.

Tint your icing green and decorate your cooled cupcakes. Top with your gold candy.

Now my favorite part, give your Macaroni Kid a cupcake and watch their face lite up with joy! Oh and don't forget to enjoy one yourself.

Happy St Patrick's Day

NOW, Let's see what you've been working on.

  • Link up to your post, not to your main blog.
  • Link up your craft, DIY, project, recipe, party, or post about you.
  • Grab the button and put on your post or sidebar.
  • Enjoy visiting other post link ups and learning more about fellow bloggers and tell them you're visiting from All About You.
  • I will choose the features from those that carry the button on their post or sidebar and that visit and comment on the other link ups.
  • If you follow me let me know in a comment so that I can follow you back.

Happy Monday Ya'll

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Orglamix Giveaway Winner Announced

First , a big thank you to everyone who participated in their color challenge. It was a huge success and  many people had a lot of fun creating their own colors. There were over 150 votes and the winner (by 2 votes) is Champagne Bubbles! Champagne Bubbles is a light beige base, like a rich champagne, that is between matte and shimmer. For the crowd that is too mature for total shimmer, and not yet ready for matte. I can't wait to try it out AND my Winner for the upcoming Blogmania Event will win this color along with 2 other colors of their choice.  So exciting.

Now on to this giveaway winner

leanne_mac said...

I like the Cafe Au Lait, Teak and Roselle and I signed up for their newsletter

Congrats Leanne, you are the winner, please email me at to claim your prize.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

How To Save Money In Your Grocery Cart

Is it weird that one of my favorite things to do is go grocery shopping?  Well, let me rephrase that, if I'm by myself, one of my favorite things to do is go grocery shopping.   I do, I love it.  I love memorizing the aisles, I love standing there reading labels of products, I love seeing new products and getting new ideas for dishes, I love getting the circulars in the mail.  I love clipping coupons.  I love lining my purchases up a certain way at check out.  And I LOVE seeing the savings on my receipt and running home and showing Poppa how much I saved us.  Hey, more savings means more shoes for Momma!! Can I get an AMEN!?

I am a loyal customer to Kroger.  I have their savings card, plan my shopping around their sales and what coupons I find.  I love that I go in the store and it's clean, stocked with the items I need, good quality items, but at a very low cost.  Now add in the coupons and sales and you've got one very happy momma on your hands. 

There are so many ways to save money at many stores, that's no new concept.   And many of us have what works for us.  Many of us have brands that we are loyal to as well.  And Kroger helps me save on those brands with their already low prices, store sales, store coupons, and their Cart Buster Savings Program going on now.

I want to share with you some of the few ways I save on money but don't miss out on quality.
  • I spend a little time each week going through the circulars and compare them to what coupons I have found.
  • I always make a list for that week's meals and needs for the house.  I never step foot in a grocery store without my list.  Doing so ends up in a bigger bill at the end.
  • When planning meals I always try to have at least 1 that can be used in a 2nd meal.  Like If I make tacos one night then I make enough meat where I can make Taco Soup a few nights later.  Or If I make grilled chicken and vegetables I know I can use the left over chicken in pot pie the next night.
  • I load coupons from Kroger's site to my store savings card.   This way I don't have to keep track of an actual coupon, save money from printing coupons, and save time from clipping them.
  • Always stockpile on your favorite more expensive items when they go on sale or when you have a coupon.  Some items I stockpile on are toilet paper, toothpaste, toothbrushes, laundry soap, cleaning products, canned items, and deodorant.  I have a little closet where I keep my stockpile and it's so nice to pull from that instead of pulling money out.
  • Buy items to make lunches instead of eating out.  I have saved nearly $50 a week just by cutting out eating out for lunch and buying sandwich stuff or soup. 
So even though you won't find me on Extreme Couponing, I am a frugal shopper who loves to save money for more important things like shoes! :)  I enjoy finding ways to save my family money that doesn't cost me a lot of time in the process because let's face it, Time is Money.

So how do you save money in your grocery cart?
I wrote this blog post while participating in the SocialMoms Kroger CartBuster blogging program, for a gift card worth $50. For more information on how you can participate, click here.

JAWS Giveaway - New Concept to Green Cleaning

It's Hump Day, how about a little giveaway to help us get over this hill?
JAWS Just Add Water Cleaning System - New Concept in Green Cleaning!

I received this set of JAWS cleaning products that one of you will win and I'm here to tell you I will never buy highly chemical based products again!  No need, these babies do the same work without killing my nose from odor. 

Plus aren't the colors so pretty, even motivates me to clean when dealing with fun colors.  :)
I can't wait to give one of you this set but first let me tell you a little about it and why I liked it so much. 

The JAWS System is what you need in your home and here's why. 
A wallet-and-earth-friendly clean.

Did you know that conventional cleaners contain up to 97% water? That means you’re paying for water every time you buy them. Not so with the Just Add Water System. With one reusable bottle, a compact cartridge refill, and your own H2O, the Just Add Water System costs you 30-50% less than the ready-to-use stuff.

Effective: Real results every time.
You might think that something so earth-friendly won’t work as well as other cleaners, right? Not so. Each Just Add Water cartridge contains super-concentrated cleaning power, which, when released in water, creates a high performance clean. JAWS cleaners work as hard as the other guys, if not harder. They’re as powerful on dirt as they are gentle on the planet.

Environmental: Reuse. Make a real difference.
There’s too much plastic, overflowing landfills and depleting resources.  JAWS cleaners use 70% less packaging material, leave 59% less packaging waste, require 59% less energy to transport, reduce water pollutants by 85%, and greenhouse gas emissions by 60%. With just one plastic refillable spray bottle and a powerful cleaning cartridge, you’re going green every time you clean.

Convenient: Simple to use. Simple to store.
The Just Add Water System makes it easier to stay organized and save space. With conventional cleaners, you have to buy a new bottle every time you run out - maybe even several bottles at once. That means you’re not only wasting precious storage space, but also the fuel it takes to get to the store - and all the other resources that are used to ship the bottles. Each JAWS reusable bottle comes with a refill cartridge attached. Everything’s in one uncluttered spot. In fact, Just Add Water cartridges use very little storage space. And that makes a big difference.

Ready to Use:Ready, set, spray!
The Just Add Water System comes with everything you need. One full refillable bottle, a reusable trigger sprayer and a super-concentrated cleaning cartridge. And after you use the contents of your first bottle, all you do is add water to the fill level, insert the refill cartridge into the bottleneck, insert the sprayer, screw it back in, shake gently and you’re ready to unleash the power. Yep, that’s all.

JAWS offers you four different products for your daily uses.

  1. Glass & Hard Surface Cleaner - Fingerprints, grease, smudges are history with the no streak formula.  All that’s left is an amazing shine.
  2. Multi-Purpose Cleaner/Degreaser Ink, grease, gunk and grime are no match for it's power.
  3. Bathroom Cleaner/Deodorizer Lime, soap scum, oil, grease, mineral deposits are no longer hard to get rid of.
  4. Disinfectant Cleaner Degreaser Reduce the spread of infection with this broad-spectrum disinfectant, guaranteed to kill 99.9% of germs while you clean.
JAWS can be found in many stores and available online at Online, starter packs are sold with empty bottles and 2 cartridges:

Well now that you are well informed of these amazing products, let's give a set away!
You can enter with 1 entry or up to 4 times.  Good Luck.

  1. Follow me via any social network you would like and let me know which one.  FACEBOOK, TWITTER, GFC
  2. Subscribe to my Macaroni Kid weekly Newsletter
  3. Visit JAWS and tell me what product you need the most.
  4. Tweet, blog, or post on facebook about this giveaway, leave me a link to it.
Leave a seperate comment for each entry.

Open to U.S. Only, concluding March 18th 7pm CST. I will contact the winner via email and they will have 48 hours to respond.  Winner will be drawn via I was provided the Jaws System for this review and giveaway put was not paid for it.  Thank you to JAWS for this giveaway.

Happy Hump Day Ya'll

Monday, March 7, 2011

All About You Link Up Party

It's Time For All About You Monday! Our weekly session where we get to show off our projects and creations. 
Texas Monkey

NOW, Let's see what you've been working on.

  • Link up to your post, not to your main blog.
  • Link up your craft, DIY, project, recipe, party, or post about you.
  • Grab the button and put on your post or sidebar.
  • Enjoy visiting other post link ups and learning more about fellow bloggers and tell them you're visiting from All About You.
  • I will choose the features from those that carry the button on their post or sidebar and that visit and comment on the other link ups.
  • If you follow me let me know in a comment so that I can follow you back.

Happy Monday Ya'll

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Happy Birthday Dr Suess - Cat In the Hat Party and fun ideas

Today Is Dr Suess' Birthday
Dr. Suess was born March 2, 1904 in Springfield, Massachusetts. His 44 children's books have thrilled many children throughout the years with imaginative characters and tongue twisting rhymes. His books have been translated into more than 15 languages and sold more than 200 million copies.

To celebrate the birthday of such a famous author, here are some fun activities:
Cat in the Hat dot to dot (printable- includes numbers 1 to 78)

Can you match the Dr. Suess character with the name (on screen, takes a bit to load the graphics.)

Cat in the Hat Coloring Page (Make sure you change your printer setting so it prints on one page.)

Dr. Suess Word Search Puzzle (Includes names of characters. Best suited to a child who is reading well.)

And here are some fun party food ideas that I did at a Cat in the Hat Party I threw last year.

You could not, would not Miss
The fun to be had with food like this!
I meant what I said
I said what I meant
It's Dr Suess' birthday
One- hundred percent
March is the month, the 2nd is the day
There is lots of fun coming your way!

Green Eggs and Ham

Prepare Deviled eggs as your favorite recipe calls for but add a few drops of green food coloring to the filling. Then fill your eggs with the green filling.

Ham Sandwiches:
Hawaiian Sweet Rolls
Brown Sugar Ham from the deli
Dijon Mustard
Swiss Cheese

Cut the rolls in half and spread mustard on one side, stack ham and cheese and put sandwich together then broil in the oven for just a few minutes until cheese melts and tops crisp up. Serve and along side the green eggs and enjoy.

Colored Popcorn

Pop your favorite popcorn and fill up a brown paper bag.
Melt butter, corn syrup and food coloring of choice together
Pour mixture over popcorn and shake around in the brown paper bag
Pour popcorn out onto wax paper and let it set

Serve in your favorite see through server and listen to your guests oohh and ahh

The Cat in the Hat Marshmallow Pops

White Candy Melts
Red Candy Melts
Sucker Sticks

Melt your candy melts adding a little oil if needed to smooth it out. Dip one end into the red and place on wax paper undipped side down to set. Once hardened do the other side of the marshmallow leaving a white stripe of marshmallow showing. Let dry.


Using a piping bag, fill with the white candy melts and pipe a hat brim around the marshmallows and let dry.

Using the tip of a very sharp object (ice pick, knife, etc) make a small hole on one end of the marshamallow (the side with the white brim if you went with this option). Dip your stick in the melted chocolate and stick into the marshmallow where you just made the hole. Stick into foam or glass jar and serve.

Thing 1 and Thing 2 cupcakes

Make cupcakes as you like and use blue icing to frost. About 15 minutes before your party or before you serve the cupcakes take blue cotton candy and place on top of the cupcakes to look like Thing 1 and 2 hair. This is so fun and so easy!

And don't forget to read their favorite Dr Suess book with them or to them tonight before bed!  We will be reading all of Monkey's as they are all her favorites! 

Happy Hump Day Ya'll

Monday, February 28, 2011

All About You Link Up Party - St Patty and Easter Bows

It's Time For All About You Monday! Our weekly session where we get to show off our projects and creations. 

Texas Monkey

I've been adding new bows to my store and wanted to show you my new St Patty's 3 in 1 Bow and my 2 Easter 3 in 1 Bunny Bows. 

First is my St Patrick's Day 3 in 1 bow which is a clover leaf ribbon sculpture clippie with bling and large white bow.  It can be worn 3 ways. 
1 - Bow by itself
2 - Clippie by itself
3 - Clippie and bow combined for the ultimate St Patrick's Day Look. 

Next are my 3 in 1 Easter Bunny Bows.  I have 2 to choose from, Peter Cotton Tail or the Yummy Chocolate Bunny.  Inner ears and inner body come in choice of hot pink or light pink and bunny's bow is any color of choice.  The Large bow comes in choice of white, hot pink, or light pink.  And as the St Patrick's Bow these can be wornt 3 ways.
1 - Bow by itself
2 - Clippie by itself
3 - Clippie and bow combined for the ultimate Easter Look.

You can find them on my facebook page HERE, I'm offering them for $10 no paypall fees and no shipping this week only. 

NOW, Let's see what you've been working on.

  • Link up to your post, not to your main blog.
  • Link up your craft, DIY, project, recipe, party, or post about you.
  • Grab the button and put on your post or sidebar.
  • Enjoy visiting other post link ups and learning more about fellow bloggers and tell them you're visiting from All About You.
  • I will choose the features from those that carry the button on their post or sidebar and that visit and comment on the other link ups.
  • If you follow me let me know in a comment so that I can follow you back.

    Happy Monday Ya'll
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