One Mom's Moxie: October 2013

Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Rise of Online Education

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg

Which career is best for me?

Merry Christmas Giveaway Extravaganza

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg

Yes folks you read that right, over $1,500 in prizes and there will be more than 20 winners!! This giveaway is as awesome as it gets! Tiffany Reviews It All has worked incredibly hard to get these wonderful prizes. Giveaway ends on 11/30 so don't miss your chance to win!

When the giveaway is over, Tiffany Reviews It All will select winners one by one, and this will be a first come basis, when the winners are chosen! The companies will be shipping off your prize(s)!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

A NickMom Night In Watching the #MotherFunny Show Instant Mom

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg
I am a member of the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias and its client.

I grew up as a NickKid so it was only natural that I became a NickMom! As a NickMom I spent too many mornings watching Dora the Explorer, so much so that I was able to sing along to Dora's song and knew when Swiper the Fox was coming around, that silly fox! Thankfully my kids are older but we still watch NickJr so when NickMom came out I was thrilled! Every night at 10pm NickJr turns to NickMom, this means if I am caught watching Sam & Cat, I can say I am just waiting for my NickMom shows to come on. I just recently got to enjoy a Moms Night In watching the new show Instant Mom while enjoying some adult beverages.

If you have never watched Instant Mom you're missing one #MotherFunny show! The show is based on Stephanie, played by actress Tia Mowry-Hardrict, becoming an Instant Mom to three children. Her husband Charlie, played by actor Michael Boatman, is supportive and understanding to all the issues that seem to arise when Stephanie tries to bond with her stepchildren. It's a cute show that many blended families can relate to. I am a stepmom as well and to say it's a hard job is putting it lightly, but it's nice to see a show that adds some humor to the same issues families may have dealt with or will deal with in the future. 

After a hectic week of kids fighting with each other and me, I was cooked, I needed some much needed Mommy Time. Sometimes as moms we need to have a friend over and laugh at the dumb things we have gone through in the last week. So I had my best friend over we enjoyed a couple (okay maybe more like a few) of Mommy Only drinks and some snacks. I was sent some awesome NickMom items, we loved the drink coasters, especially the green one that said, "Every time you hear the word Mom, take a sip." they were so fun! I also received a NickMom shaker, which I love it makes the perfect size drinks. I wanted to share my new favorite drink with you all.

I made the Mama's Bottle of Tea drink but I don't care for lemon so I decided to make my own Mommy's Only Sweet Tea. If I had a baby bottle I swear I would have drank it out of it for the fun of it! This drink is so easy just shake your preferred sweet tea and vodka, then pour into a sugar rimmed glass. We ended the evening with a coffee drink and a little dessert. What mom doesn't want to devour some sweets without little dirty fingers around?! No sharing this time! 

It was fun enjoying a moms night in, having a drink with a friend and watching my new favorite mommy show, Instant Mom. Whether you are a mom or not this new NickMom show is a cute to watch. Take the time to give yourself a Mommy's Night In with a friend or two, watch some NickMom together, you'll find yourselves laughing and relating to the shows.

Watching shows like Instant Mom is a nice way to relax after the kids have gone to bed, even though I still have Mommy Chores to do like folding laundry, watching NickMom makes folding that fourth or fifth load not so bad. You can read all about NickMom on Nick.com. You can follow NickMom and Instant Mom on Twitter and also follow NickMom on Facebook. NickMom airs new episodes on the Nick Jr. channel every Sunday at 10:00 pm EST and reruns can be viewed every night. Please check your local listing or this link to confirm the time in your specific time zone.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

V8 V-Fusion® Refreshers Review

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg

As a mom to five kiddies I can never keep enough juice, iced tea or sports drinks in our refrigerator. I was able to try the awesome V8 V-Fusion® Refreshers and let me tell you, the Tangerine Passionfruit flavor lasted all of a couple hours in our house. To say my kids liked it is an understatement! I'm personally not much of a juice drinker unless it's an adult beverage, but I really liked the Black Cherry Berry. The flavors are just right and the fact that every serving is only 100 calories makes this mom so happy! So I still might not be able to keep my fridge full of drinks but I am glad they love this juice.

So the V8 V-Fusion® Refreshers come in four flavors which are Peach Strawberry, Cranberry Grape, Tangerine Passionfruit and Black Cherry Berry. Each of these Refreshers are made of 20 to 25% blend of fruit and veggies juices. They contain NO artificial flavors, colors or preservatives and they are completely naturally sweetened, yes that means no high fructose corn syrup. Oh and they are a good source of Vitamin C. 

Go check out the V8 V-Fusion® Refreshers for yourself and let me know what you think of them! You can find them in your local grocery stores on the juice aisle. One more thing you can keep up with V8 V-Fusion® on Facebook!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Bumbums & Baubles - Girls Shoes Review & Giveaway

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg

Looking for a cute pair of shoes for your little girl? What about a pair that have interchangeable accessories?! Look no further then Bumbums & Baubles! They carry boots and Lily Mary Janes with sizes starting at Toddlers 8 to Kids size 2. The boots come in two styles Barrett and Belle, the Barrett is a suede body with patent leather detailing and the Belle is all suede. The Lily Mary Janes come in patent leather and leather. My daughter chose the Lily Mary Jane in Black Glam.

The Lily Mary Jane in Black Glam are gorgeous in person! The pictures don't even begin to show the great workmanship that goes into these shoes. I was thrilled to see that they are the type of shoes that my daughter won't ruin after a few times wearing them. The accessories that Bumbums & Baubles carry work with all of their shoes and their headbands as well. 

My daughter really wanted the red bow accessory but she was sent angel baubles. I hope to order a few baubles to let her change them whenever she feels like sporting a new look. As for the shoes and their accessories I give the company 5 stars, they are top quality shoes! You can look around the Bumbums & Baubles site and if you'd like to purchase anything you can get 20% off using the code: erodriguez20.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Sweet Creations Pumpkin Carving Kit by Good Cook

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg

Halloween will be here before you know it, so I was happy to try out the Sweet Creations Pumpkin Carving Kit by Good Cook. 

My daughter wanted her pumpkin to have Squeaks from the Pumpkin Carving Kit. So I followed directions and taped it to the pumpkin.
Transferring the pattern to the pumpkin was easy, the kit came with a punch wheel. 
I carved out each section just as the pattern's directions showed. Each section on the pattern is numbered.
Almost done, it didn't take long at all and was actually pretty easy!
Finished! My daughter loves her pumpkin, she added a tiny belly button, you can't see it but it's there. 
Here he is with a candle lit in the dark. He really is cute. After carving him I decided to give a harder one a try.
The Witch was definitely harder to carve out but I think I did a pretty good job even though the pumpkins we had were not easy to work with. I have never carved pumpkins with the inside walls that stripped away like pieces of noodles. It was a challenge but I did it!

Check out the Sweet Creations by Good Cook and the Pumpkin Carving Kit if you decide to purchase anything you can use the code: PUMPKIN25 to get 25% off! 

Sunday, October 20, 2013

Halloween Goodies by Sweet Creations #GoodCook #SweetCreations

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg

I was given some awesome Sweet Creations by Good Cook products to try out for a fun Halloween Party! I already made my Haunted House so I decided to make some yummy cupcakes and cookies to go along with it. I bake some white cupcakes, whipped up a batch of buttercream frosting and had my 8 & 10 year olds put together the Halloween Cupcake Stand. I also used the very cute Orange and Black Cupcake Papers for my cupcakes.

Had my daughters decorate the sugar cookies, we love all the Halloween items that Good Cook has available. We already started planning for another Halloween Party for next year! I will try out the very cool Halloween Cake Pop Press by Sweet Creations before Halloween. I have never made a cake pop but the press makes it seem easy to do. 
We love all the Sweet Creations products that Good Cook carries, there are more then just Halloween products so check out the Good Cook website. If you find something you like use the code: HAUNTED25 for 25% off your total.

Hope you all have a very Happy Halloween!!

A Halloween Haunted House #GoodCook

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg

As a Good Cook Kitchen Expert I am able to try out many different Good Cook products. I have to tell you I am far from being an expert! I joined to push myself further into cooking and try new recipes. When the chance to make the Halloween Haunted House Cookie Cutter Set product came up, I was excited to give it a try. It was an interesting experience.

First was making up the gingerbread dough, the set comes with a recipe on the back but I decided to cheat and used a boxed cookie mix. I mixed the dough up and let it chill for about an hour. Then I put parchment paper on the counter and dusted it with flour, dusted my roller with flour and also the first cookie cutter with flour. 

After cutting out all the pieces and then stamping them with the impression side of the cookie cutters we baked them.

Putting the Haunted House together took some work. I made a royal icing from scratch. It worked but took a little time to dry and stay together.

Once the house was put together we decorated and then decorated some more!

Every single thing used on my Haunted House is edible. I personally love the chocolate rocks I used for the pathway and my Mom's fallen rock walls. 

I have to say using the cookie cutters wasn't the easiest but a little flour kept the cookie dough from sticking. My favorite part of this project was decorating the house and coming up with some ideas that go along with the Haunted House theme. You can find the Haunted House Cookie Cutter Set on the Good Cook website.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

UncommonGoods - Unique Gifts for Men

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg

I love this time of the year, the air is becoming crisp and cool and the evenings come earlier. Then I am reminded that the holidays are approaching faster than they did last year, okay not really but it seems to feel that way every year. So then I start thinking of what I should get my guys, which include my husband, my sons, my brother and my dad. Thank goodness for UncommonGoods they have such an awesome selection of gifts for men!

UncommonGoods has been around since 1999 and is a privately-owned retailer with it's headquarters in Brooklyn, New York. They like to feature unique designs and handcrafted gifts, everything that is featured on the site is in harmony with the environment and has not harmed any animals or humans. Most items are hand crafted and made right here in the USA. As an independently-owned business that are able to support any cause or charity of their choosing. Since starting the Better to Give program 12 years ago, they have donated over $700,000 to various charities around the world!

I enjoyed looking through all the awesome men's gifts, which you can check out here. I went ahead and ordered my husband a really cool belt that he has been wanting for a little while now. This Ford seat buckle belt has the real Mustang emblem and is made with real seat belt material. My husband absolutely loves his new belt, he now wants another one and also wants to give each of our sons a belt of their own. 

My next gift was for my son, I knew we would all get a kick out of this neat Gummy Bear Light! This light is not only cute but is easily portable. He only needs 2 AA batteries, then squeeze his belly and watch him light up. I chose the red Gummy Bear Light and it has been so fun to carry him around and use his light all over the house. Again, this is another awesome item from UncommonGoods, our entire family loves this Gummy Bear Light!

Looking one last time in gifts for men section, I found one last perfect gift, you can look through this section to find a unique gift as well. I was thrilled to find a flask and not just any regular old flask, this one comes with a collapsible cup to either share your drink or use it for yourself. My husband likes his new Shot Flask so much! He is looking forward to trying out with some of his friends and seeing their reactions to it. 

Visit UncommonGoods to see all the gifts for men that they have available, whether you are looking for your husband, son or dad you are sure to find something for every guy on your gift list.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Using Pompeian Olive Oil in Baking Recipes

Disclosure2013 photo Disclosure2013_zps93640645.jpg

I used to do all the baking in our home but now that my ten year old, Olivia, loves baking I like to let her do the baking now. I personally like to make baking recipes homemade or at least semi-homemade but for a learning or convenience using a mix can still taste good. So when I was asked to make something using the Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil I was going to make a chocolate cake from scratch, until my daughter realized I would be baking. So instead I decided to try a cake mix but instead of using vegetable oil I would use the Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil. You can use complete this quick survey and be entered to win $200!!

Olivia loves the process of putting all the ingredients together. I have taught her to crack eggs in a cup just in case a piece of the shell goes in, it's much easier to retrieve it in a cup then in a bowl with all the mix around it.

Here she is pouring the Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Another tip I taught her was when you pour oil it clings to the sides of the measuring cup so you have to double check your measurement and sometimes you might have to add another drop or two. 

Here Olivia is pouring her batter, she was anxious to get them baked. Here is how Olivia's olive oil cakes turned out!

These little cakes turned out perfect! The great thing about Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil is that it is so much healthier for you then any other oil. You can substitute butter or margarine in any recipe with the Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil, you can also use it instead of using any other type of oil. 

So for Olivia's little cakes we used a yellow cake mix and substituted the vegetable oil with Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Then frosted the cakes with regular frosting as well. There is no difference in taste with using the extra virgin olive oil and actually they seemed a little more moist then usual. I plan on making one of the Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil recipes that are featured on there site soon!

Did you know that Pompeian Extra Virgin Olive Oil is the first olive oil to be approved for the USDA quality-monitoring program! USDA quality monitoring program verifies the purity and quality of the olive oil through rigorous USDA product testing and review of production processes. You can learn more about that here. Also "Like" Pompeian on Facebook to get a $1.00 off coupon on any Pompeian Olive Oil.