Blogging A to Z Challenge: What’s Your Theme? #atozchallenge

Blogging A to ZIt’s time once again (April) for the Blogging A to Z challenge and once again I plan to participate. I think this is my third year on this blog.

What is the Blogging A to Z Challenge?

It all began with a post from Arlee Bird (the brain child) when he set forth a challenge to all bloggers (mostly writers) for the month of April.   He wondered could bloggers post every day except Sundays during the month of April.  And to up the bar, could we blog thematically from A to Z? It has grown by leaps and bounds ever since with over 2K blogs participating this year with tons of categories and blog niches represented.

I discovered the Blogging A to Z challenge in 2010 when I still maintained a writing blog. That Writing blog (along with another one) has since merged into Crazed Mom and become an everyday, no topics off limit blog. I considered doing the challenge on that blog again this year, but would rather focus over here on what I’m good at – food. It’s not too late though, so maybe I will jump on board over there too. Who knows, I tend to be a glutton for punishment. (or high levels of stress haha)

I began doing the Blogging A to Z Challenge here on Daily Dish Recipes, in 2011. I didn’t do too well, but in 2012 and 2013 I did MUCH better and stuck to my recipe theme. Lots of great recipes and food were shared.

This year I plan to go at it again, and I’m sticking to a super easy recipe theme. Stuff that anyone can make no matter their level of cooking, etc. Easy recipes with less than 5 ingredients (plenty with only two or three!).

Are you participating in the Blogging A to Z Challenge? If you are, what theme are you doing?


Buy, Snap & Redeem with M&Ms and Forza Motorsport 5 Game

Cbias Sponsored Post

Have you seen the Buy, Snap & Redeem with M&M’s and Forza Motorsport 5

Have you joined in the M&M Pixel Art Instagram Contest?

Since we wanted to pick up the game, we headed to Walmart (best prices you know!) and grabbed a few bags of M&M’s to enter the contest ourselves.

Forza 5  Fun Pixel Art Video Game #contest with M&Ms & Xbox One #FueledbyMM #cbias #shop

Here’s the best part, because of the “Gaming is better with M!”  Buy/Snap/Redeem promotion that is currently running with M&M’s and Forza 5, you can get a $10 Walmart EGift Card!!!  Details here. Here’s how it works. Buy the new Forza 5 game and then purchase a package of participating M&M’s products - M&Ms Peanut 42oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Milk 42oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Peanut Butter 38oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Pretzel 30oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Peanut 19.2oz Large Laydown Bag, M&Ms Milk 19.2oz Large Laydown Bag, M&Ms Peanut Butter 18.4oz Large Laydown Bag, M&Ms Pretzel 15.4oz Large Laydown Bag.)

Snap a photo of qualifying items on the receipt on your phone and text it to 811811. Include the code M&M with the picture of your receipt. Game and M&M’s must be purchased on the same receipt. It’s that easy! And the M&M’s are the perfect gaming snack!

MMs  Fun Pixel Art Video Game #contest with M&Ms & Xbox One #FueledbyMM #cbias #shop

So once we had all our bags of M&M’s, the 4 teens and I sat down to get creative. In between popping them in our mouth, laughing and talking and of course making fun creations, we really had a fantastic time. Here are a few of the creations we made. The rest will be shared on Instagram!

Who do you recognize?

M&M Minion

minion  Fun Pixel Art Video Game #contest with M&Ms & Xbox One #FueledbyMM #cbias #shop

M&M Link

link  Fun Pixel Art Video Game #contest with M&Ms & Xbox One #FueledbyMM #cbias #shop

M&M Minecraft Creeper

  minecraft  Fun Pixel Art Video Game #contest with M&Ms & Xbox One #FueledbyMM #cbias #shop

So again, here’s how it all works.

When you bring home your M&M’s and the Forza 5 game, you Snap (a photo) and Redeem for a $10 Walmart gift card. Just in time for Christmas!

Buy participating M&M’s products which include M&Ms Peanut 42oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Milk 42oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Peanut Butter 38oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Pretzel 30oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Peanut 19.2oz Large Laydown Bag, M&Ms Milk 19.2oz Large Laydown Bag, M&Ms Peanut Butter 18.4oz Large Laydown Bag, M&Ms Pretzel 15.4oz Large Laydown Bag.

Your M&M purchase must be at least $8 for the offer to work. And you also must Buy Forza Motorsport 5 game for Xbox One. They must appear on the same receipt.

Snap a photo of the qualifying items on your receipt from your phone and text it to 811811.

Include the code M&M with the picture of your receipt. Again, the game and M&M’s must be purchased on the same receipt.

Redeem:  You will receive a text back with a reward code valid for a $10 eGift card to Walmart, it’s that easy!

So will you be buying Forza 5 and some M&M’s to enjoy along with it this Christmas?

Fun Pixel Art Video Game #contest with M&Ms & Xbox One #FueledbyMM #cbias #shop

Cbias Sponsored Post

Who doesn’t love M&M’s. Seriously. They are colorful, chocolate and the perfect, easy snack. They are also the perfect gaming snack, you can eat them while continuing to concentrate on your video game. Did you know you can create awesome pixel art with them too? We’ve been playing for the past several weeks with all kinds of designs and patterns and characters. I will be sharing many of them on my Instagram account, but there are a few listed in this post too.

I am super excited to share with you the new Gaming with M Pixel Art Contest which ties M&M’s, Creativity and Art together in a fun, easy contest!


So why is M&M’s having this contest? Well, the brand new Forza Motorsport 5 game for XBox One just came out.  We are big gamers here in our house (yes, all 7 of us!) and we do pride ourselves in obtaining the latest and greatest game systems and hottest games. An XBox One is on our Christmas list this year and I definitely want the awesome racing game that everyone is talking about. Forza 5!

This game is amazing. It feels so real, nothing like the older games out there and racing is literally brought to life right in front of you. It’s like being on the track, the graphics are literally amazing.

Since we wanted to pick up the game, we headed to Walmart (best prices you know!) and grabbed a few bags of M&M’s to enter the contest ourselves.

Forza 5

Here’s the best part, because of the “Gaming is better with M!”  Buy/Snap/Redeem promotion that is currently running with M&M’s and Forza 5, you can get a $10 Walmart EGift Card!!!  Details here. Here’s how it works. Buy the new Forza 5 game and then purchase a package of participating M&M’s products - M&Ms Peanut 42oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Milk 42oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Peanut Butter 38oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Pretzel 30oz Stand Up Pouch, M&Ms Peanut 19.2oz Large Laydown Bag, M&Ms Milk 19.2oz Large Laydown Bag, M&Ms Peanut Butter 18.4oz Large Laydown Bag, M&Ms Pretzel 15.4oz Large Laydown Bag.)

Snap a photo of qualifying items on the receipt on your phone and text it to 811811. Include the code M&M with the picture of your receipt. Game and M&M’s must be purchased on the same receipt. It’s that easy! And the M&M’s are the perfect gaming snack!


So once we had all our bags of M&M’s, the 4 teens and I sat down to get creative. In between popping them in our mouth, laughing and talking and of course making fun creations, we really had a fantastic time. Here are a few of the creations we made. The rest will be shared on Instagram!

Who do you recognize?

M&M Minion


M&M Link


M&M Minecraft Creeper


I don’t even think I can tell you how much fun we had and how many different projects we created with M&M’s. Or even how many M&Ms we actually ate! haha It was a blast and I can’t wait to show off the others we made for the M&M’s contest!

Fall Things I Love… What about you?

favorite fall things i love

Fall is definitely my favorite time of year. I love so many things about it.

The cooler, crisper days. The colors of the trees as the leaves begin to change. The sound of crunchy leaves beneath my feet. The sweet smell of pumpkin and spices wafting from my kitchen on a near daily basis. The gloriously wonderful vegetables and fruits. Apple picking on a still warm day. The warmth of a hot fire pit intermingling with the cool night air, the sweet smell of toasted marshmallows clinging to the air. Yes, indeed. Everything about Fall.

I came up with a list of my must have Fall Favorites. These are the things I love the most about Fall. The things that I would not be complete without. Yes, I know. It’s sort of pathetic, but it’s undeniably true. In no particular order at all…..

1. Chunky Sweaters – In style, out of style. I’ve never really cared. I love chunky sweaters, usually cardigans but pullovers are fine too. I love layers and a sweater always adds that extra layer and can be shrugged off on those still warm days. I love that a sweater goes perfectly with a good pair of jeans, my pants of choice during the Fall. I cannot wait to pull my sweaters out and even to shop for more, because I’m sure that’s coming soon too.

2. Firepits/Bonfires – I don’t care if it’s a huge bonfire or a few pieces of wood thrown into a fire pit, I love them. I love the smokey smell, I love the way the heat mixes with the cool evening air. Many a fall evening I can be found in my chunky sweater, wrapped in a warm blanket, sitting outside with my laptop in front of a firepit. Yes, I do that. A lot.

3. Pumpkin Spice Latte – And not just any pumpkin spice latte, some aren’t very good, just sayin’. A Starbucks PSL can melt away stress, calm my nerves, and just generally put me in a happy, calm, comfortable place. And I totally associate them with Fall, so even if they sold them year round, I couldn’t bring myself to have one. I know, ridiculous.

4. Changing Leaves – I love the scenery in the Fall. I love the gorgeous colors of the leaves as they change, the bright reds, oranges and yellows. I love the sound of the crunchy leaves as you walk through the grass. We take the scenic route to get places, just so we can look at the beauty.

5. Cute Boots – I just love boots. Since I had my surgery two years ago, I can’t wear heels anymore, so a good flat boot is the perfect shoe for me (other than flip flops and sandals which I cannot wear in the Fall and Winter). Last winter I got super into boots when I got a cute pair from Merrell and then I just wanted more and more because I realized that A) they are super cute with almost anything and B) they work with my stupid injury and I can wear them comfortably! Already have a huge wish list of boots I’d love to own!

6. Seasonal Candles – I love candles. I love seasonal candles. In the Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter. But man oh man, the wonderful smell of a Yankee Spiced Pumpkin Candle is amazing. I love them. I have like 6 in various stages of burning. haha I buy a new one almost every year and with as much as I burn them, they are never completely used up by the time I’ve moved into my Gingerbread one for Winter. That’s a whole other list of Favorites. haha

So what are your favorite must have Fall items that you would not be complete without?


Giving Back – Toms #oneforone

Changing lives for the better is such a rewarding thing.

When you can change someones life without even trying, I think that makes it even better. It just feels good to give back.

The thing is, there are people everywhere that need help. And there are many that think the small things we do are not going to make a difference in the big scheme of things. But this just isn’t true. Even One Small Act can make a HUGE difference.

Tom’s Shoes has always been a leader in giving with their #oneforone program. An innovative company with a wonderful mission for charity and for giving back.

Haven’t heard of it? For every single shoe they sell, they provide a pair of shoes to a child in need. One for One.

For me, Toms has truly brought it home.

TOMS Giving in the U.S is now helping American Children in need. This brings it home in a way it never has before. These are our children. Many of them hungry, poor, with health issues and no money to pay for any of it. That’s where TOMS steps in and makes sure these children have a pair of shoes.

Seems simple right?

As Tom’s has said,

On their own, shoes have a limited ability to change a life. But when combined with programs run by our Giving Partners, they can become a powerful tool in helping create opportunities for a better future.

Shoes keep a child healthy. They don’t get cuts on their feet, they can be active in sports and having what everyone else has gives confidence beyond measure.

There are children all across the US who struggle to fit in, who struggle to even make it to school, who struggle to belong, who struggle with self esteem and confidence because they have so little, in some cases, even lacking something as simple as a pair of shoes.

These children are our neighbors, our family, our friends and live within our communities all across the United States.

These same children have dreams for their future. Toms brings hope to these children in a world where sometimes hope feels lost.

Join me today and help spread the word about TOMS One for One.®

Remember, One Small Act is More Impactful Than You Think!

Learn more about this awesome mission and find out how you can be involved, byvisiting this link.

I was thrilled when asked to participate in the TOMS brand ambassadorship program to support TOMS U.S. Giving program. I am bringing this post and #OneforOne news to you as a part of that partnership.

Cooking Planit & T-fal Cookware Giveaway: T-fal Cookware Review #cookingplanit

Cooking Planit & T-fal Cookware Giveaway

It’s almost time for that giveaway I told you about here. In order to get ready, I’m writing a review of the prize I am giving away, 1 (one) T-fal Stainless Steel with Thermo-Spot 12-piece Cookware Set, as well as a review of the Cooking Planit App, because that’s our awesome sponsor – Cooking Planit! My giveaway starts Tuesday (aug. 20) so I hope you’ll come back to enter! With this giveaway there are 50 us, and EACH of us is giving away a set. That’s 50 sets of cookware. Pretty awesome odds!

As I said, I want to tell you about this awesome cookware. I’ve used the cookware a handful of times now. Different pots, skillets, pans. One night we used almost the entire set in one fell swoop, but most of you probably aren’t cooking for 6 or 7.  I also used to cook a meal using the Cooking Planit App for my review. This is the meal we made, and it was amazing! We made Sauteed Chicken Tenders with Creamy Sun-Dried Tomato SauceCorn on the Cob with Cayenne Parmesan Butter and Grilled Asparagus. It was the perfect back to school meal and you can read about that experience here. (can’t access the links for the recipes? Sign up for a FREE Cooking Planit account and you can browse all the delicious recipes)

cooking planit giveaway meal


We’ve used T-fal products for years, so I am no stranger to the quality of their products. When my package arrived, and I was opening it, the first thing that stuck me was how carefully everything was packaged. There were even rubber pieces keeping the lids from scratching the pans in transit. I love that.

Once I got everything unpacked, I sat and stared at my set in awe. It was so pretty (and new, I love new). But I had to get down to business, play with it, try it out, investigate what I loved about it, besides the fact it was pretty. I first noticed how sturdy the pan set was. I could tell they were made for long lasting durability which is important since I am in the kitchen every single day not only as a mom, but also a food blogger.

One of my favorite features was the measuring lines that are inside the pans. It means the elimination of dirtying up a measuring cup when measuring out cream, milk or water. I put it to the test that same night with some rice, and it was spot on. Love it.

Cooking Planit & T-fal Cookware Giveaway: Tfal Cookware Review

Another great feature is that these pans can go RIGHT into the oven (up to 450 degrees). Oven safe pots and pans? Love it! No worries about melting or warping. That means time saving and less work for me! Yay!

Tfal Cookware 4

Another feature is the Thermo Spot. I love that the saute pans have this. This allows you to know when it’s ready. The circle in the middle (the thermo spot) will change from a pattern to solid to let you know that your pan is ready to go.  The first thing I made it one of the saute pans was an omelet and let me tell you, not a single thing stuck to that pan. And no, I didn’t spray it first because I was in a hurry and it was a busy school morning and cleaning the pan was ridiculously easy having not used any spray. Love that nothing stuck to the pan. I have since used it to grill chicken with olive oil and to make grilled cheese sandwiches and every time the pan comes out clean and there is no sticking. (unlike my everyday pans which I am seriously considering tossing at this point haha)

Tfal Cookware 2

Tfal Cookware 3

If you’d like to win your own set, you can come back and visit me on Tuesday, August 20, 2013 for my giveaway or if you simply can’t wait, or if by the time you are reading this, the giveaways are all over, you can purchase your own set here

While I tried pretty hard to convince you of how awesome this set is, I know you’ll want to see more information and you can do that here on the T-Fal website.


You have 50 chances to win a set! The 50 bloggers below, 49 others besides me, will be hosting giveaways too. Just find out when their start date is and you can enter to win twice a day for 25 days! 

The Cooking Planit and T-fal 2013 Giveaway
Start End Blog 1 Blog 2
8/19/13 8/25/13 Baby Boomster Mrs.
Schwartz’s Kitchen
8/20/13 8/26/13 CopyKat Recipes Daily Dish Recipes
8/21/13 8/27/13 Lisa Cooking LarksCountryHeart
8/22/13 8/28/13 ME Redone Hot
Eats and Cool Reads
8/23/13 8/29/13 Mother Would Know The
Two Bite Club
8/24/13 8/30/13 Sophistishe Citron Limette
8/25/13 8/31/13 Kitchen
and Kale Chips
8/26/13 9/1/13 I Can Cook That Leave
a Happy Plate
8/27/13 9/2/13 Peaches & Cake i
love my disorganized life
8/28/13 9/3/13 Diddles
& Dumplings
8/29/13 9/4/13 Basil Momma Cooking
With Libby
8/30/13 9/5/13 Persnickety
8/31/13 9/6/13 Ancestral Chef Bite Sized Blog
9/1/13 9/7/13 The
Staten Island Family
Mamal Diane
9/2/13 9/8/13 Food Fash Recipes
For My Boys
9/3/13 9/9/13 The
Wicked Noodle
Little Girl
9/4/13 9/10/13 Unorganized
Mommy of 3
The Tasty Fork
9/5/13 9/11/13 Yi Reservation Dixie
Chik Cooks
9/6/13 9/12/13 Chicago
Foodie Sisters
Fountain Avenue Kitchen
9/7/13 9/13/13 Cooking
from a SAHM
9/8/13 9/14/13 Bobbi’s
Kozy Kitchen
from My Crazy Kitchen
9/9/13 9/15/13 What Jew Wanna Eat Sumptuous
9/10/13 9/16/13 The Mama Report Busy
Mom of Two
9/11/13 9/17/13 Culicurious Huppie Mama
9/12/13 9/18/13 Three
Diets. One Dinner.
Spice’s Bites

Note: I will paste the code for the giveaway into this post when the giveaway is live. It will be available on the bottom of all related Cooking Planit and T-fal posts.

Disclosure: I received a set of T-fal cookware to review, as well as the Cooking Planit App to cook a meal from. All opinions are 100% my own.

Giveaway details: US residents only, one winner per household/per family from the 50 blogs participating in the giveaway. Individuals that have won more than one giveaway will receive only one set of cookware and an alternate winner will be chosen.


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The Weekly Dish Recipes Newsletter

The Weekly Dish Recipes Newsletter – 5.11.13

I really hope your week was good. Mine was a bit chaotic, high’s and lows – because hey, that’s life. More on all that in a moment.  I am loving this weather we are having – here in St. Louis we’re having lots of sunshine, chilly mornings but it’s nice and wonderfully warm in the afternoon. But not too hot, and not too cold – just the way I love Spring. How has the weather been at your end? I hope you have at least enjoyed a few nice days. I know some people got snow last weekend. No thank you. Hope that slowed down throughout the week and that the weather is beginning to get a little nicer for you. Be sure and get outside and enjoy any sunshine and warmth you do good. It’s good for the heart, the soul, the body and mind. I’ve been trying to work out on the patio as often as possible.


Happy Mother’s Day to all the mom’s and “Like a Mom’s” Out There!

What are you planning to do to celebrate your day? I plan to just take a quiet day, spend it with my family and quite possibly head to the park for a bit. I know I really just want to spend it with my family.

This Week’s Recipes You May Have Missed:


Garlic Parmesan Oregano Oven Fries

Chicken Con Queso Burritos

Chicken Con Queso Burritos

Parmesan Hasselback Potatoes

Parmesan Hasselback Potatoes

Chai Latte Yogurt Tea Cake

Chai Latte Yogurt Tea Cake

and coming to the blog tomorrow morning bright and early:

Texas Sheet Cake

Texas Sheet Cake


What Recipes We’ve Made This Week From the Blog:


Shrimp Tacos with Jalapeno Ranch Sauce

Shrimp Tacos with Jalapeno Ranch Sauce

Parmesan Tilapia Roll Ups

Parmesan Tilapia Roll Ups

Gardening News:

GardenMy garden is doing SO well so far. I lost a few pepper plants due to the storms. I also lost one cucumber plant but the other looks like it’s coming back. My watermelon plant has more than doubled this week. I cannot believe how huge it got and everyone told me it wouldn’t come back. Well, it did. No watermelon’s yet so time will tell if that happens.

My herb garden is thriving – the rain and temperatures have been very kind to them this week.

Let’s talk about strawberries – I have 8 new plants and 2 that are from last year that have “volunteered” themselves and are thriving. We’ve already collected three cups of strawberries with more ripening as I type. Look for that recipe above coming this week from THESE strawberries.

Family Stuff:

Graduation: Well, this week has been full of graduation plans for my two oldest, Vanessa & Ryan. It’s finally here and I am not ready. I spent the one afternoon putting together the graduation announcements, figuring out who’s getting tickets and who isn’t. Addressing anything over 50 envelopes by hand sucks, just thought I’d let you know – you know, in case you were wondering.  We also did cap & gown photos this week. That was pretty fun and so surreal to see the two of them standing there in them. I can’t believe it’s happening.

Cap and Gown Photos

Trip to the Hospital: Right in the middle of our crazy chaos that is our lives, my husband decided to scare the crap out of all of us and call me from work asking me to pick him up when I picked my son up from work. Say what? (he carpools with other dudes from work). I had hoped he was just ending his work week early because there wasn’t much to do. When I got there, from the moment our eyes met, I knew something was wrong. When my husband gets in the car and admits he needs to go to the hospital, it’s time to sit up and pay attention. This is the “I’m fine” guy. The guy who had no idea he had a heart attack about 3 1/2 years ago until he started to have another one a few months later. (long story… they found heart attack damage that was OLD and we knew nothing about it)

The guy has had multiple mild heart attacks and heart attack scares and has a stint that was put in about 3 years ago. So I listen, even when he wishes I wouldn’t. In other words, I usually call the shots when it comes to going to the hospital. This time, he wanted to go. So Thursday night, I found myself sitting in the emergency room for hours while they ran tests, did blood work and did a CT scan. We finally left at 2am feeling a little better, because it turns out it was not his heart, thank god literally, but instead some major disc issues in his back. Probably shouldn’t be happy about that, but as my husband said … “I can live with that.” He may have to get surgery in the future, but for right now they have ordered him to physical therapy at the spinal and neck center … only time will tell.

I’m just kinda glad the week is over and I’m looking forward to an enjoyable but hopefully uneventful weekend with my family.

What’s Coming Up:

BBQ barbecue recipesIn the next several days I have several themed party posts coming up. One in particular for a Budget Friendly BBQ recipes series I am doing with a few other bloggers, and because of this series, there will be other barbecue recipes, sides, desserts and drinks coming to the blog soon. It’s a bit of a hodge podge for now, but they are all terrific bbq recipes that I wouldn’t share if we didn’t love them.

There’s a yummy, but simple cupcake recipe coming in the next few days. It has a bit of a twist, and will be loads of fun to reveal.

Friday there will be a post that has something to do with strawberries and roses. You’ll just have to trust me for now about how amazing it is. You definitely need to check back.

A really fantastic crockpot recipe is coming on Sunday – so good – think cheese.. lots of cheese. Asiago to be exact.

I hope you all have a fantastic weekend, a happy mother’s day and a wonderful week ahead.

26 Fabulous Recipes: Blogging from A-Z #atozchallenge

Happy Easter my friends!


In my former life I was a writer. (Who am I kidding, I still am, just not as often.) At any rate, being a writer and part of the writing community of bloggers seems to help me discover amazing things. Some of these things I support from afar and some I jump feet first into and don’t look back.

Two years ago I discovered this awesome blogging challenge called the Blogging from A-Z Challenge. It was a few days before it was scheduled to start and I couldn’t jump in because it was just too late. Last year I did indeed jump in and it was a whirlwind of craziness all month. It was SO much fun. I only missed two letters –  and then I kinda cheated on one by claiming an award I titled “Yesterday I won an award.” haha I used that for Y. But other than that, I did it and had a blast. I found loads of new blogs, got many of my friends to participate and by the end, knew I’d do it again.

And that’s where I am now. Tomorrow begins the madness of the challenge, which means a recipe every single day throughout April. We take Sunday’s off, but Sunday is #SundaySupper and I’m not missing out on the friendship and amazingness that comes from my #SS group. So yep – 30 recipes. And I even have the first week of May scheduled out in case I experienced some burn out. Can’t get better than that, and no guest posts at all. All mine. Yay!

This year there are 1600+ blogs participating in every genre and niche. I cannot wait to see what everyone is doing. And you know, as if 30 recipes wasn’t enough, I am also participating over on Crazed Mom – the theme over there is very general and is totally “family/mom” oriented. Hope you’ll follow along there too. Who knows, you might get to know me better. ha!

Are you participating in the Blogging from A-Z Challenge? If you are, let me know by leaving me a link to your blog in my comments area below so I can follow along and see what you did that day.

Get ready, it’s going to get crazy in here!

And for fun, here are my posts from last year:

Previous A-Z Entries:


Hope you’ll Join Us! Cookies and Crafts for Sandy Hook {#BloggersforSandyHook}

After the devastating acts on December 14, 2012 it feels like it’s always on my mind. The helpless feeling of wanting to do something but having no idea what or how. My children were just as affected by the events as I was, they’ve had questions, expressed anger and just been sad and hurt by the devastation to those families. 

I’ve spent days wondering what I could do. I want to do something, but have no idea what it is I can do or even should do.

Then I came across this wonderful event being hosted by Crazy for Crust and several other bloggers that are part of a Facebook Group together. They are hosting a Cookies and Crafts  for Sandy Hook event. Read more below, and join them (and me) in honoring the entire Newtown community and all those affected.

On Friday, December 21, 2012, we are going to honor the victims, families, and community of Newtown by doing a post in their honor. Cookies and Crafts for Sandy Hook will be one way we can show support in the aftermath of this unimaginable event.

bloggers for sandy hook

On Friday, December 21, write a post sharing a cookie or a craft and a tribute to Sandy Hook Elementary School. There is no specific requirement…just do or make something to show your support. Maybe something you would make for, or with, your children.

Please spread the word about this united effort wherever you can. You can use the hashtag #BloggersforSandyHook.

Please visit Crazy for Crust to find out more about this event.


sandy hook nyfs 200

The Newtown Youth and Family Services  has now been set up. According to their website, Newtown Youth and Family Services, Inc. is a “licensed, non-profit, mental health clinic and youth services bureau dedicated to helping children and families achieve their highest potential. NYFS provides programs, services, activities, counseling, support groups and education throughout the Greater Newtown area.” All donations made to them are going to go back to those affected by the school shooting. You can go to their website here to donate.


 I hope you’ll participate and be a part of this great event to honor those affected by Sandy Hook

You Found What at the Grocery Store? {MM #3}

In lieu of a recipe for Munchie Monday, I instead give you this hilarious story!

You Found WHAT at the Grocery Store?

Part One of a Series of Unfortunate Events at the Grocery Store

Juanita’s Cocina
My friend Jen inspired me to share a few grocery store crazy people stories. She shared a “Saturday Sale” story that had me rolling from the opening line. Only Jen, who lives in a small town, would come across a Saturday Sale that mirrored the Black Friday sales but in the dairy department of her local grocery store. If you haven’t read it, you should. Right now. I’ll wait. (It has an amazing recipe with it!)

Now to tell you about one of my odd Grocery Store moments. I have a lot. My son now works in the meat department of a grocery store a few miles from our house. So he comes home and shares all kinds of strange, odd and funny stories with us. Our rides back home are usually filled with wide open mouths or extreme laughter. I’ll be sharing those too. Mostly because they are about food, and groceries and they just fit. Plus they are funny and you will laugh. Either that or you’ll think I live in a strange town. Maybe I do. Check back tomorrow for part two of a Series of Unfortunate Events at the Grocery Store.

So last week I was picking my son up from work. When I got there, he informed me he had to stay an extra half hour (you know with all the holiday shopping going on), so I decided to pick up a few things while I was there for Thanksgiving breakfast.

I quickly decided on Pumpkin Pie Donuts (posting my amazing version tomorrow morning!) and so I pushed my cart through the center aisle and was headed towards the canned pumpkin until I passed the 2nd aisle. I had to do a double take. In fact, I actually had to back up and look again, because surely I had not just seen what I thought I had just seen.

Fox at the Grocery Store

This is the exact costume our fox was wearing…

There, standing in aisle 2, picking a box of stuffing off the shelf was a fox. Yes, a fox. No, not a real one. But an individual, I’m assuming of the male gender but maybe not, dressed from head to toe in a fox costume. I’m talking the kind like a mascot wears with the huge heads and the big feet and the furriness. Yeah. That was in aisle 2. I had to think about it for a moment. I’m used to seeing weird at Walmart. But I wasn’t at Walmart. I was at our regular old, local grocery store in a fairly well to do area and was seeing a fox getting groceries.

I honestly stood there staring for a moment. I know it was probably rude. I even thought  about taking out my cell phone because nobody was going to believe me plus I really wanted a photo. But alas, I couldn’t do it. But I did find this picture, which looks exactly like the fox.

I went to find my son, but he was nowhere in sight, so I just continued grabbing groceries. I couldn’t stop thinking about the strange fox in aisle two. I swear if I had been medicated, I’d have assumed I was hallucinating, but really – he was there.

When my son finally got off work, I was just grabbing a box of eggs – the last item I needed  and we headed towards the checkout as I relayed the strangeness I found in aisle 2, to my son and Shawn, his co-worker. I’m pretty sure Shawn thought Ryan’s mom was nuts. I was beginning to think I was nuts as I was explaining to them what I saw shopping for stuffing.

As we rounded the corner, both Ryan & Shawn stopped in their tracks. There in front of us, was the fox. He was now checking out. The best part was, nobody seemed to notice. I mean, seriously – or they just didn’t care. I think most of the people there were just in a hurry to get back home. But regardless, there was a fox checking out with his stuffing and two people I know saw it with me. I know I’m not crazy.

What’s the most bizarre thing you’ve ever seen anyone wear while shopping?

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