Friday, August 8, 2014

Mom, You're Going to Wear That???

Do your kids judge how you dress? I was expecting it when he's in high school, maybe earlier if I had a girl but my son is 8 and the last few months he's becoming a clothing critic.

I've been really trying to dress better each day getting out of the sweats and yoga pants and planning an outfit. Mostly casual, especially during our Arizona HOT summers.

Yesterday I woke up with a migraine and was planning on coming home for a nap after school drop off so I just threw on sweatpants and a tank top. I was greeted with "Mom, you're going to wear THAT to take me to school?". Its drive through drop off so I'm not even getting out of the car - I'm sure some parents are still wearing PJs.

I love this pink top from Old Navy and I always get lots of compliments when I wear pink (though I do admit my wardrobe is mostly more neutrals and softer colors). When I picked him up from camp he told me my shirt was too bright.

It's 110 degrees out sticking with a casual look #ootd #instafashion #gap shirt #oldnavy shoes #Ross bracelets #wristsoiree

I'm trying to branch out a bit and try some new things. Back to school shopping with my son and I tried on some cheetah print sneakers - "Mom, those aren't really your style"

Are your kids your clothing critics? What age did they start?
Wednesday, August 6, 2014

What I Wore Wednesday { #wiww }

I'm a huge fan of the idea behind The Pleated Poppy's What I Wore blog linkup - documenting your daily outfits in an effort to get out of the sweats or yoga pants. Since losing weight and just feeling 1000x better I've been making an effort to dress better each day so I'm joining in for #wiww

note - still working on the best way to take outfit selfies - any tips to share?

It's 110 degrees out sticking with a casual look #ootd #instafashion #gap shirt #oldnavy shoes #Ross bracelets #wristsoiree

Its hot here and my day most consisted of errands and taking the kid to camp so keeping it casual.
shirt Old Navy
shorts Gap
shoes Ross
bracelets Wrist Soiree

#ootd #instafashion shirt #anntaylorloft pants #gap shoes #Clarks bracelets #charmingcharlie earrings #icantremember (maybe charming charlie)

Jeans Gap
Shoes Clarks
Bracelets Charming Charlie

#ootd black shirt #mombomb skirt #junkinthetrunk necklace #nordstrom shoes #nordstrom #instafashion

Meet the Teacher night at school so I wanted to dress up a bit. This much color and pattern is an example of how I'm trying to branch out from my basic pieces in neutral colors.

shirt Mom Bomb
necklace Nordstrom Brass Plum
skirt vendor at Junk in the Trunk Vintage Market

#ootd #instafashion  #americaneagle shoes #clarks bracelets #wristsoiree

shirt American Eagle
jeans Nordstrom
bracelets Wrist Soiree

Please visit The Pleated Poppy's What I Wore linkup for this week
Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Taco Tuesday

Every Tuesday in our household is Taco Tuesday - its my son's favorite meal of the week. Having a set day of the week makes menu planning easy and has become a tradition that everyone looks forward to.

We rotate between 3 main taco dishes, ground beef, shredded beef, and chicken and occasionally mix in nachos, fish tacos or fajitas.

  Taco Tuesday - my son's favorite meal of the week. Beef tacos tonight - homemade seasoning (super easy) and freezer cooking (I always triple my batch and freeze extras) for a quick and healthy dinner #tacotuesday #freezercooking 

Ground beef taco - I make my own homemade taco seasoning mix and cook up several pounds at time freezing the extra for future dinners.

Shredded Beef Taco - we love the crock pot Salsa Verde Beef from Not Your Mother's Make-Ahead and Freeze Cookbook . I also freeze the extra of this meal for future dinners.

Chicken Tacos - I use Penzeys Chicken Taco seasoning mix. Cooks fast and to make sure I always have lime juice I freeze juice in ice cube trays and then store in a large container - defrost in microwave before adding to pan.

And some nights we go out for Taco Tuesday - our favorites are Chipotle, Rubio's and Gadzooks.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Arizona Science Center's Lost Egypt { review & giveaway }

Disclaimer: I was provided the opportunity to visit the Arizona Science Center and Lost Egypt exhibit through a campaign with Blended Extended. All opinions are my own.

My son loves science (and since I used to be a scientist before I opened a cake business that makes me a very proud mom!) so one of his favorite places to explore is the Arizona Science Center. The Arizona Science Center  is located in downtown Phoenix - very easy to get to and has an attached parking garage. Most of the exhibits are hands on which makes it such a great experience and keeps everyone engaged.

Arizona Science Center Lost Egypt Ancient Secrets Modern Science

My son and I went last week to the Arizona Science Center to see Lost Egypt: Ancient Secrets, Modern Science, the special exhibit which is open now through September 1st.  My son was super excited since he learned about Egypt in school last year. Right when you enter there's an Egyptian scene perfect for photos - all the kids all ran right over and jumped on the camel. There were lots of Egyptian artifacts to see and some great hands on exhibits to experience pyramid building. My son's favorite was pulling the stones where it demonstrated how the use of friction made pulling the load easier. He also enjoyed the sand tunnel which demonstrates how the artifacts get buried by the winds.

Arizona Science Center Lost Egypt exhibit

We listened to a great talk about how mummies are preserved. The kids really enjoyed seeing the gross demonstration of how the brain is removed - my son is still talking about it (don't worry they just use a ribbon to represent the brain).

After touring the Lost Egypt exhibit my son wanted to hit up his favorites: bed of nails and everything else in the Get Charged Up exhibit.

Arizona Science Center - Get Charged Up exhibit

New to us this time was the paper airplane launcher in the Flight Zone exhibit and because my son LOVES to make paper airplanes we spent a long time at this exhibit.


And the final stop was the water play area, Water Spheres and Gears, where we hung out until they closed for the day - my son loves water!

Arizona Science Center - Water Spheres and Gears

Arizona Science Center
600 E Washington
Phoenix, AZ 85004
open 10 am - 5 pm daily (except for Thanksgiving and Christmas)
For more information visit or 602.716.2000

And now for the exciting part - we are thrilled to be hosting a giveaway for tickets to the Arizona Science Center so you and your family can experience Lost Egypt.

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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Pogo Passes - win four tickets to Disneyland!

We're big fans of Pogo Passes in our household. We've only taken advantage of about half of the opportunities but its still be a great value! Our family favorite isweekly bowling at Brunswik Zone and my son's favorite is monthly Tempe Paintball (lil'ballerz for the younger guys on Sunday mornings) and they're free with your pass. Right now for every pass purchased, you will be entered to win 4 passes to Disneyland. Don't forget to use code SWEET to get your pass for 60% off.

disclaimer: I am an affiliate for pogo pass. We paid for our passes and love them so much that I signed up to be an affiliate. I was not asked to write this post and all opinions are my own.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The Cookie Doughjo { Giveaway }

Let's make cookies!  #cookiedoughjo

My son and I were recently invited to the Cookie Doughjo, a new business in Peoria that offers baking classes for kids. Being in the sweets business myself, my son has been baking and decorating sweets for years and he loves it. When I asked him if he wanted to try out a class he starting jumping and down with excitement.

Hard at working making his cookies #thecookiedoughjoaz

Every kid had their own bowl and spatula and recipe cards for the kids to follow. The staff brought around ingredients and the kids got to mix everything together. Once everything was mixed, they got to scoop out the cookies and add the m&ms (my son's favorite part!).

My son's favorite part - adding the m&ms @cookie_doughjo #thecookiedoughjoaz

While the cookies baked, the kids got to decorate boxes for their cookies. My son was thrilled that he got to take home a box of cookies he made to share with our family when he got home.

And the best - fresh baked cookies! It smelled soooo good @cookie_doughjo #thecookiedoughjoaz

The Cookie Doughjo offers birthday party packages and cooking classes. 

The Cookie DoughJo
8271 W Lake Pleasant Pkwy, #101
Peoria, AZ 85382
(602) 448-5635

Follow on social media:

Instagram: cookie_doughjo
Pintrest: The Cookie DoughJo
FourSquare: The Cookie DoughJo
Yelp: The Cookie DoughJo, Peoria AZ

July Cooking Class Schedule
Start Your Day With Biscotti and Coffee
A treat so nice, you have to bake it twice. Learn to bake delicious biscotti and enjoy the fruits of your labor with cup of coffee or milk. This class is limited to 9 participants. (Advanced)
Cookie Decorating 
We teach your kids to make frosting from scratch and then let their creativity run wild decorating delicious sugar cookies. This class is limited to 15 participants. (Beginner)
The Perfect Summer Time Cookie 
Learn to bake delicious lemon zest cookies from scratch (zesting our own lemons and all). They are the perfect summer time cookie! This class is limited to 10 participants. (Intermediate)
Giant Fortune Cookies
Learn to make giant fortune cookies. While these cookies are in the oven, your children will also create their own special fortunes to go inside the cookies. This class is limited to 12 participants (Beginner)
All Natural Chocolate Chip
Do you love chocolate chip cookies but want to learn to make a better, healthier version? We will teach you to make these all natural cookies during this class. This class is limited to 15 participants. (Beginner)
Whoopie Pies, is it a Cookie, Cake or Pie?
Learn to bake delicious Whoopie Pies. This delicious treat embodies all of the best parts of our favorite desserts! This class is limited to 10 participants. (Intermediate)

And now the exciting part! You can enter to win 2 cookie classes at the Cookie Doughjo and an apron ($75 value). The giveaway ends 7/18.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: My son and I were offered to try out a class for free. All opinions are my own.
Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Disney On the Road Phoenix

I was lucky enough to attend the Disney Social Media Moms Disney On the Road event last week held at the gorgeous Scottsdale Fairmont Princess Resort in Scottsdale, Arizona.  The happiest place on earth came to Scottsdale to sprinkle some of their pixie dust.  It was so wonderful to meet so many local bloggers and many from western states who came to Arizona just for this exciting day.

I really enjoyed hearing from, Erin Glover, directory of social media for Disneyland. What an amazing job - so many great resources and endless amounts of fun topics to write about. I'm a classic Disney fan loving Snow White and The Seven Dwarfs, Peter Pan, and It's a Small World and excited to learn about all the new projects involving some of the classics.  The brand new Seven Dwarfs Mine Train looks amazing with the use of technology. Erin also shared the weekly challenges with the grand prize being a 7 night vacation to Walt Disney World Resort - how amazing would that be?


We got to watch the very entertaining video of Grumpy Cats visit to Disneyland and hear the tales of filming the piece. And what fun to learn our special surprise guess was the real live Grumpy Cat.

I was inspired by Tracey Clark's talk on iPhone photography to get away from the snap shot photos and create more interest and fun in every photo. Tracey is also one of the three Disney Sisters who I hadn't heard of but am now enjoying following them on social media.

It was such an exciting experience to hear about Disney's latest projects, learn from such inspiring speakers and connect with other bloggers.

I wish I could jump in the car right now and drive to Disneyland.

Disclosure: I was invited to attend the Disney Social Media Moms Disney on the Road Conference. I was not asked to write this post and all opinions are my own.