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Calming Mornings with TAZO Chai Latte

Posted by on May 23, 2016 in Dining, Family, Health, Hot Topics, Recipes | 0 comments

 “This post was sponsored by Starbucks as part of an Influencer Activation. I received compensation and complimentary products to facilitate my review.” My favorite thing to do in the morning is brew a cup of tea and watch the sunrise while reading a book on our outdoor patio. It is calming, and the perfect way to start my day before the craziness of chasing after three kiddos all day commences. Before drinking tea, I was a major coffee drinker. I would drink 4-5 cups of coffee a day, and found that I was dependent on coffee getting me through the day. Part of my “new me in the New Year” commitment to taking care of myself, I have stopped drinking coffee and switched to tea. It was not as easy of a transition as I thought, and I was...

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Chocolate Passion Fruit Tart Recipe

Posted by on May 5, 2016 in Recipes | 0 comments

  What to do when you are invited to a dinner party with foodie friends and you’re charged with making dessert? Especially when you spend far more time contemplating the savory side of a menu than the sweet side. This was my challenge one recent Friday evening. And I wanted to bring my A game. While it seems almost everyone loves chocolate for dessert, I lean towards something with fruit. And this got me thinking about a memorable sweet treat I had tried recently… a passion fruit filled chocolate. The tropical tang of the passion fruit is so unique and one of my all time favorites. Combine it with dark chocolate and it’s a match made in heaven. After a little thought, I decided to make a Chocolate Passion Fruit Tart. And while it’s been several years since I’ve...

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Kid-Friendly Shrimp Ceviche Recipe

Posted by on Apr 26, 2016 in Family, Recipes | 0 comments

  I love ceviche, but I have never found a ceviche that my kids would eat. While I was in Mexico last month on a mission trip, I asked the family who we were staying with if she could help me to develop a ceviche recipe that was still flavorful, but that my kids would eat. She took my children and me into her kitchen and taught us how to make multiple different styles of ceviche. To my surprise, the kid-friendly version ended up being my favorite, and the best part – it is super easy to make, and can be made the night before. All of the ingredients can be found at Trader Joe’s, it costs less than $20 to make enough, and is enough food to feed 15-20 people. I recommend making it the night before so...

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Knott’s Boysenberry Meatball Recipe

Posted by on Mar 22, 2016 in Knott's Berry Farm, Recipes, Theme Parks | 5 comments

 Recipe courtesy of Knott’s While at the Knott’s Berry Farm Boysenberry Festival this weekend, the boysenberry meatballs were one of my favorite dishes that I sampled. The meat was juicy, tender, and tantalized my taste buds. But, it was the sauce that made them some of the best meatballs that I have ever had before. Our friends at Knott’s Berry Farm were so generous to share their secret meatball recipe with us so that families can enjoy them at home for years to come. Every time that you serve the Knott’s boysenberry meatballs with your children, all the wonderful memories of your visit will come back. Boysenberry Meatballs Ingredients 2 lbs. Ground beef 1 cup Bread crumbs 1 ½tbs. Granulated garlic 1 tbs. Italian herbs ½ cup Milk (to soak bread crumbs) ½ tsp. Salt and pepper 1 jar...

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Kid-Friendly Veggies in a Bottle

Posted by on Mar 15, 2016 in Family, Health, Recipes | 0 comments

  Trying to get my kids the daily amount of vegetables into their diet is one of the biggest challenges I have experienced as a mom. My picky eater is always refusing to eat his veggies, and I have to use creative tactics to get them into his diet like sneaking them into pasta sauces, pancakes, and more. Another way that I’ve been successful at getting him to eat his vegetables is with smoothies and juicing. The only problem with juicing is the massive amount of mess is creates in my kitchen and the long clean-up time. Since I am a busy mom who doesn’t have the time to juice daily for my son, I have been trying new products, and recently fell in love with Bolthouse Farms. Each bottle has 3 3/4 servings of vegetables, and they use...

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Cooking with Fig & Olive: The Cuisine of the French Riviera

Posted by on Feb 24, 2016 in Family, Recipes | 0 comments

  Well, it’s the New Year. The holidays are behind us and if my Facebook news feed is any indication, I’m not the only one looking to get serious about eating right after a month long blow out. Okay, it might have been two months. The timing could not have been better to receive a copy of Fig & Olive, The Cuisine of the French Riviera. This bi-coastal restaurant shares many of the recipes that have made it a popular dining destination. The recipes feature fresh, colorful ingredients with flavorful olive oils used in place of butter and cream. After flipping through and considering recipes to try out for dinner such as Whole Branzino stuffed with lemon, rosemary, thyme and garlic; Côte de Boeuf With Olive Oil Bérnaise; and Seared Orange Scallops with carrot purée, I came upon Francine’s...

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Fiesta Quinoa Salad with Garlic and Lime Grilled Shrimp

Posted by on Feb 9, 2016 in Recipes | 0 comments

  Lent is right around the corner, and I’ve been busy in the kitchen whipping up new recipes that the family will enjoy eating during Lent. Since I have been on a strict diet in the New Year, I wanted to create a dish that was full of nutrition, and one that my kids will still eat. With quinoa being one of my favorite things to cook with in the kitchen, I decided to make a fiesta quinoa salad and pair it with garlic and lime grilled shrimp. The result was delicious perfection, and even the kids asked for seconds. The dish is super easy to make, and you can easily make it in advance (perfect for nights when you get home late from a sporting event). I served the dish cold, so you’ll want to make the quinoa...

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Lemon and Raspberry Pancake Recipe

Posted by on Feb 8, 2016 in Recipes | 0 comments

 Sponsored We are lucky enough to have a lemon tree that provides us with a plethora of fresh lemons all year long. I love squeezing the juice from the homegrown lemons into my water every morning and then using them to create delicious dishes for my children. We recently received a gift package from T-fal to celebrate National Pancake Day that included HungryJack products, and I immediately thought that the kids would love it if I made them lemon and raspberry pancakes for their Sunday morning breakfast. I got up early and walked into the garden to pick the best lemon and berries to make the recipe. I substituted the water that was recommended on the back of the HungryJack pancake mix with the lemon juice to create the most flavorful pancakes that I have ever made. While making...

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Exclusive Zimzala Restaurant Valentine’s Day Cocktail Recipe

Posted by on Feb 5, 2016 in Dining, Holiday, Recipes, Valentine's Day | 0 comments

  Looking for the perfect cocktail recipe for your Valentine’s Day dinner or looking for one of the most romantic places to go out for a cocktail in Orange County? Zimzala Restaurant at the Shorebreak Hotel in Huntington Beach is one of the hottest new places for couples to escape together for the night to sip on delicious handcrafted cocktails while enjoying the fresh ocean breezes. The general manager of Food and Beverage at Kimpton’s Shorebreak Hotel, Blake Brissette-Mathias, let us peek into his recipe book, and share two of his Valentine’s Day cocktail recipes. With more than eight years of experience, Blake is at the forefront of the culinary scene in Orange County by creating cutting new food and beverage initiatives. Get your cocktail glasses ready, and entice your husband tonight with one of these distinctive cocktails. Sex...

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Banana Caramel Cream Pie Recipe

Posted by on Jan 25, 2016 in Recipes | 1 comment

  Who doesn’t love a slice of homemade pie after dinner? I have been challenging myself to try new things in the kitchen this year, and that includes becoming a better baker. I am great with making a healthy and delicious dinner, but when it comes to desserts, I fail miserably. While on my quest to become a better baker, I decided to make something simple for my first dessert and ended up with an incredibly delicious banana caramel cream pie. I was walking around the grocery store trying to think of what ingredients I could use to make the pie and wanted to ensure and keep the instructions simple. It ended up being one of the easiest things I have ever made, and everyone in my family devoured it. Ingredients: 1 Pre-made pie crust (freezer section) 1 Package...

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Egg and Avocado Toast

Posted by on Jan 22, 2016 in Recipes | 0 comments

  I LOVE Avocado toast. The toppings are endless when making avocado toast. I decided to make an egg and avocado toast this morning since I’ve been trying to master the art of poaching an egg – it is harder than it looks, so I bow down to chefs everywhere who have mastered the art of poaching an egg. For the first time, I used a gluten-free Multigrain bread from La Brea Bakery. Since I’m trying to make healthier choice in the New Year, the flax seed in the bread is what caught my eye. Next I wanted to use some microgreens on top of the avocado, but our local store didn’t have any in stock, so I used regular sprouts instead. I then poached the egg, gave it an ice bath, and then put it on top of...

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Zootopia Zoo Snacks

Posted by on Jan 17, 2016 in Disney, Film, Recipes | 0 comments

  Sometimes my house can feel like a zoo. There are often kids running in and out the front door like a stampede of elephants, and I often have little growling tigers who don’t get their way. I know that I’m not alone, and life can often feel like a zoo for many parents. How do I calm my little monkeys when they are swinging from the ceiling? I serve them a healthy and delicious snack. In celebration of the upcoming film, “Zootopia,” I surprised the kids this afternoon with these tasty zoo snacks themed snacks – and they loved every delicious bite. Making the fun zoo snacks is simple. All you need are bananas (for the monkeys), peanut butter (for the elephants), and animal crackers (for the kids). I guarantee that these snacks will satisfy even the wildest...

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Dinosaur Egg Cupcakes aka Croods Cakes

Posted by on Jan 14, 2016 in Entertainment, Featured, Film, Recipes | 3 comments

 The prehistoric family that we all know and love, The Croods, are back with all-new adventures in the all-new Netflix original series “Dawn of the Croods”. My family loves sitting by the fireplace together and dreaming of being in a prehistoric era while watching the hilarious series. Before sitting down to watch The Croods with my kids this weekend, I surprised them by making Dinosaur Egg Cupcakes aka. Croods Cakes. I am not going to lie. Making them was a labor of love. If you’re planning a Croods theme birthday party or dinosaur themed birthday party, then these will totally impress your guests. How do you make dinosaur cupcakes aka Croods cakes? First you start by making the egg shells. I purchased brown eggs and then while they were in the egg carton, I used a super sharp knife...

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Healthier Lemon Chicken Piccata Recipe

Posted by on Jan 11, 2016 in Family, Recipes | 0 comments

  Clearly I have never been born to fry meats, and that was proven true when attempting to make chicken piccata for the first time. The minute I heard the sizzle..I panicked and turned down the heat. It didn’t compromise the flavor, and benefitted the health of my kids. Is it still piccata? I think so..just to the 20th Century healthy family. How did I make it? I started out with my Grandma’s recipe of covering the chicken tenders in salt, pepper and flour while the butter and olive oil heated up..but I couldn’t follow through on clogging my families arteries. Instead – I drizzled fresh lemon juice on the chicken, then covered them in flour before sprinkling a tiny bit of salt/pepper on top. I added the chicken to the butter and olive mixture before turning down the...

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Italian Sausage and Spinach Soup Recipe

Posted by on Jan 7, 2016 in Family, Recipes | 0 comments

  The weather is cooling down, and the kitchen is heating up. The one thing that my kids LOVE on a rainy day is a bowl of warm homemade soup. I am always trying new things in the kitchen, and when I found myself with a couple of extra cans of crushed tomatoes from the holidays, I made this Italian sausage and spinach soup. The result was pure deliciousness. It ended up being one of the best soups that I have made, and the kids ate every last bite. A successful homemade meal is one where there are no leftovers. The soup can be made in less than 20 minutes and guaranteed to be a new family favorite. Ingredients: 1/2 onion 2 Tbl. Garlic 2 Tbl. Olive Oil 1 Pkg. Sweet Italian Sausage (Sliced) 1 28oz. diced tomatoes 1/4...

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Garlic and Parmesan Broiled Asparagus Recipe

Posted by on Jan 4, 2016 in Recipes | 0 comments

  Getting my kids to eat enough vegetables has always been a struggle. With asparagus being one of my favorite vegetables, I have been determined to make a recipe that my kids will like. It has been a constant battle of trying to make my kids eat their asparagus for years until finally developing the perfect kid-friendly asparagus recipe. Thanks to my lemon tree that continues to provide my family with an abundance of fresh lemons throughout the year, I was able to create this delicious garlic and parmesan broiled asparagus recipe that goes perfectly with any dish. If you are able to make the recipe during the Spring or Summer when the weather is warmer, you can easily grill the asparagus. Simply add a little foil to the barbecue and then add the asparagus mixture to the top...

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Cheesy Chicken Noodle Bake Recipe

Posted by on Dec 29, 2015 in Family, Recipes | 0 comments

  As the weather keeps getting colder, I’ve been craving some of my favorite comfort foods. While I’ve never been big on making casseroles, my daughter helped me to create this delicious cheesy chicken noodle bake. It was creamy, delicious, and simple to make. ~Enjoy Cheesy Chicken Noodle Bake Ingredients: 1 12 1/2 oz. can of chicken (we used the one available at Costco) 1 10 3/4 oz. can of cream of chicken soup 1 8 oz. container of sour cream 16 oz. egg noodles 1/4 cup cheddar cheese 1/8 tea. Of salt and pepper Directions: Preheat the oven to 350 Cook egg noodles as directed on package, and drain. Mix all the ingredient (except cheese) and then place in a casserole dish. Top with cheese Bake for 30-35...

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Lightening It Up With White Bean Salad

Posted by on Nov 25, 2015 in Recipes | 0 comments

  With the holidays almost here overindulging is a certainty for me. Creamy buttery mashed potatoes with Madeira gravy, Italian sausage dressing, turkey skin… my favorite part of the bird, and that’s really just a glimpse of the gluttony I fall prey to. After a couple of days of this sin, I need a break. Something lighter and healthier starts to sound really appealing. Something like White Bean Salad. High in protein and low in fat, white beans are the perfect size, shape and texture to mix with vegetables and greens to create a delicious and satisfying meal or side dish. The bean salad keeps well and can be eaten cold or warm temperature, and best of all it’s easy and you can add pretty much any raw vegetables that appeal to you. I like to start with cooked...

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Disneyland Pumpkin Cheesecake Recipe

Posted by on Oct 6, 2015 in Disney, Recipes, Theme Parks | 0 comments

 We attended a media event as a guest of Disney One of my favorite things about visiting the Disneyland Resort during Halloween Time are all the delicious desserts offered throughout the season. From decorated caramel apples to tasty cookies, there is something to satisfy everyone’s sweet tooth when visiting the Disneyland Resort. One of our favorite Disneyland seasonal desserts is the pumpkin cheesecake. Guess what? Now families can enjoy this popular tasty treat right in the comfort of their home thanks to our friends at Disneyland, who gave us their secret recipe to share with all of you. Put your apron on, bring the kids into the kitchen, and bring the magic of Disney into your home by making this delicious holiday recipe together as a family. Don’t miss celebrating Halloween Time with your family at the Disneyland Resort...

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Chicken Tortilla-less Soup Recipe

Posted by on Sep 18, 2015 in Recipes | 0 comments

  I’m calling this recipe my Tortilla-less Soup. I forgot the tortillas and honestly, this healthy soup doesn’t need them. Boasting tons of flavor from fresh vegetables, cumin, and roasting juices, it’s a light soup that’s easy to make and easy on the figure. Here are a few tips for making the soup: Cook the chicken breasts in advance until just done and then shred in long strips with the grain. To prevent chicken from becoming overcooked do not add into the soup until near the end, giving it just enough time to warm up. As the cooked chicken breasts rests, they will form juices. Be sure to add these juices to the soup. It’s a real flavor boost! For a textural difference, I like to julienne the vegetables rather than dice them. There is something so satisfying about...

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