Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Delish Dinner: Light Chicken Cajun Pasta

I found this recipe on Skinnytaste.com when I was looking for some healthier chicken recipes that wasn't just plain chicken. I was skeptical because I don't have a lot of luck when cooking chicken when it's not part of enchiladas or a casserole. But, this was sooo good! I've actually made it a couple of times lately and every time its so yummy. It definitely has some kick, but you can adjust the spiciness to your tastes. I like to add lots of veggies and use less pasta when I eat this meal to keep it a bit healthier, but I still get to eat a lot (bonus!). My husband likes more pasta and it's super easy to just add some more for him, so it fits for both of us! This has a couple of steps and does take a few pots and pans and I usually like to stay away from meals like that- (I hate doing dishes), but this meal is worth it!

8 ounces uncooked linguine
1 pound chicken breast strips
1-2 tsp Cajun seasoning (or to taste)
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tbsp olive oil
1 large red bell pepper, thinly sliced
1 large yellow bell pepper, thinly sliced
1/2 red onion, sliced
3 cloves garlic, minced
2 tomatoes, diced
1 cup fat free low sodium chicken broth
1/3 cup skim milk
1 tbsp flour
3 tbsp light cream cheese
salt & pepper to taste
2 scallions, chopped
cooking spray

So, the first thing you need to do is chop up all your veggies.  I like to do this the night before after Baby Boy goes to bed, so it's all done cause it kinda takes a while.  The original recipe included mushrooms, but I'm not a fan so I don't use them.  You could always add them though if you like them. :)  After all your veggies are cut set them aside.

The next thing you prep is part of the sauce. In a small blender make a little slurry by combining milk, flour and cream cheese.  Set aside to use in sauce later.

Next, season your chicken strips with cajun seasoning, salt, and garlic powder.  Use as much seasoning as you want.  I like to use a lot.  It is spicy, but the chicken has a lot of good flavor.  After the chicken is all seasoned, heat a large heavy nonstick skillet over medium-high heat; spray with cooking spray and the chicken. Sauté until done, set aside on a plate.
Now you can cook your pasta according to the directions on the box.  While that's cooking, add olive oil to your skillet and reduce heat to medium; add bell peppers, onions, and garlic to skillet and sauté 3-4 minutesAdd the tomatoes and sauté 3-4 more minutes or until all vegetables are tender. Season with  salt, garlic powder and pepper to taste.

Reduce heat to medium-low and add chicken broth.  Then pour in the slurry you blended earlier, stirring about 2 minutes. 

Return chicken to skillet and add any salt and Cajun seasoning to taste. Cook another minute or two until the chicken is hot, then add the linguine and toss well to coat and mix it all up. Top with chopped scallions and enjoy your delicious dinner!

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Monday, April 29, 2013

Boogie Wipes {Review and Giveaway}

So, we all have boogers!  In fact, your sinuses can make 2 liters of mucus every day. That’s almost 8.5 cups or the equivalent of how much water you should be drinking each day! (For other fun "booger facts"  click here!) And we know that it can be pretty hard to get rid of those boogers, especially with your kiddos.  I know my little guy hates anything having to do with getting rid of them!  Boogie Wipes definitely makes that task easier! 

Boogie Wipes are made with natural saline to dissolve boogies (mucus) caused by the common cold, allergies or otherwise booger-filled kid moments. Extra soft, alcohol, phthalate and paraben free, Boogie Wipes are available in Great Grape, Fresh Scent, Magic Menthol and Simply Unscented. They are even recommended by pediatricians as a gentle, effective alternative to a dry tissue.

I have to admit that I LOVE Boogie Wipes!  Baby Boy does NOT like getting his nose wiped, but at least when I use Boogie Wipes it doesn't take long to get his nose clean since it dissolves the boogies quickly and effectively.  I also really like how these smell.  The Fresh Scent is really nice and the Great Grape smells just like grape soda.  Yum-it is really fruity.  Another great feature of Boogies Wipes is that they are soft- no ugly red noses when you use these!  Boogies Wipes are even great for grown ups too! I used Boogie Wipes even before I was asked to review them and I definitely recommend them.

Follow & Connect:  Join the Boogie Bunch, Like Boogie Wipes on Facebook, Follow Boogie Wipes on Twitter or Pinterest.

Buy It: You can buy Boogies Wipes on their website or find a store near you.

Win It:  One lucky person is going to win (2) packs of 30-count Boogie Wipes (fresh, grape, menthol, or unscented– combination varies)  to try for themselves!  Enter using the Rafflecopter below.  
Giveaway is open to US, Canada, and Australia.  Ends 5/12.

Winner: Jenny P.

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Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Floppy Seat Review #MamasBabe Sponsor Spotlight

Floppy Seat Review
One thing I never got before Baby Boy was born was a cart cover.  At the time I didn't think it was really a necessity, so I never registered for one.  But, once he was old enough to sit up in the cart I realized that I definitely needed one!  Not only was he touching the cart, but the kid was constantly trying to put his mouth on it too.  That's where I draw the line.  No matter how many antibacterial wipes I used on a cart, I still didn't want my baby's mouth on it.  It was perfect timing to get a Floppy Seat!  

I saw on the Today Show that shopping cart handles are one of the top 10 germiest places. Saliva, bacteria and fecal matter are just a few of the substances found on shopping cart handles. Umm, GROSS! Cart handles rank high on the yuck scale because they’re handled by dozens of people every day and, of course, raw food carries nasty pathogens. The Floppy Seat is your answer to help keep your baby safe from germs on shopping carts and high chairs. 

The Floppy Seat comes in a cute and easy to carry Messenger Bag style.  It covers ALL sides of the shopping cart.  Plus, it really does fit any cart! The elasticized perimeter really makes it easy to slip on the carts.  I've tried it at Target, Walmart, Publix, and even the big Costco carts- it fits great on ALL of them.  I've also used our Floppy Seat in bout three different restaurant high chairs and it fit them all.  Sometimes I needed to do a bit of arranging, but it always works.

I received the Floppy Seat in their new pattern, Sapphire. It's color is super bright and vibrant.  Floppy Seat comes in a variety of other patterns and colors as well. This cover is super cushy and plush on all sides and velvety-soft for your baby.  One thing I really liked about this was that it comes with it's own safety belt.  This made it possible for my baby to be safe and secure at all times in any cart.  It even has loops to attach toys onto and pockets to hold sippy cups or other toys.

Follow & Connect: You can Like Floppy Seat on Facebook or follow them on Twitter.

Buy It:  You can buy the Floppy Seat for $49.99 at Babies R Us.  Connect on their website as well.

Win It: Come back tomorrow to enter to win a Floppy Seat in the Mama's Got A Brand New Babe Giveaway Hop!

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Monday, April 22, 2013

Boba 3G {Review}

I was so excited to get to try out and review the Boba Carrier 3G!  I had tried some other carriers and wraps with my little guy, but I just didn't love any of them.  The carriers hurt my back (which was already hurting most of the time from having to carry around a baby and bad posture!) and I just never felt like my wrap was quite secure enough- especially when babywearing for extended periods of time.  I really wanted to try some other carriers, but their expensive price points kind of deterred me, so when Boba generously agreed to let me review the Boba 3G in glacier I was beyond happy! 

The Boba Carrier 3G includes more than a dozen features making this carrier super awesome.  First of all, the carrier was voted the 2012 Top Baby Carrier by Baby Center, so you know people love it. It's a Soft Structured Carrier that is intended for babies and children between 7-45lbs. It's perfect for babies and toddlers alike, the Boba Carrier can be converted to a newborn carrier without an infant insert or any additional items like some of the other brands (so no additional costs) and it can be used well into toddlerhood.  Plus, Boba has front and back carrier options for you and your baby.

The ergonomic design, patent-pending foot straps, and multiple adjustments make this carrier the perfect fit for anyone to use.  The new 3G design is made to fit parents of all shapes and sizes without purchasing an extension belt or accessory.  It is designed to comfortably fit heights from 5'0" to 6' 3" and a waistband range from 25" (I wish!) to 58".  I'm no skinny mini and I had no problems what so ever using this carrier!  Plus, added bonus- I didn't feel fat wearing it either which is a really nice feeling. ;)  You can also find instruction on how to properly use all of Boba's babywearing gear by visiting Boba's instructional page.

All of the straps on the Boba 3G are fully adjustable, and elastic bands are provided so you can comfortably tuck the straps away once you have the carrier adjusted for you and your child. The buckles on the Boba are military grade so you know they are STRONG! It was easy to adjust to fit whether wearing Baby Boy on the front or back.  This carrier also offers a removable sleeping hood that adjusts in length to fit growing babies.  When you're not using the sleeping hood, you can use the zipper pouch to store it, or you can store some things for yourself (phone, money, etc.).

I use my Boba 3G around the house whenever Baby Boy is fussy and wants to be carried.  He loves being in there.  When I use it on a daily basis I usually carry Baby Boy in the front carrier position. I've also used my Boba while hiking in the Smoky Mountains.  It was awesome!  We did a hike to Laurel Falls while we were in Tennessee this spring.  It's about a 1.5 mile hike mostly uphill to the falls and then 1.5 miles mostly downhill on the way back.  Baby Boy rode the whole hike on my back.  He was great! (It was unexpectedly cold while we were there, so he's super bundled up.  Yes, he's wearing socks for mittens and a hat that's a little too small.  We live in Florida and were not prepared for snow when the normal temps were supposed to be in the 50's/60's!)  He didn't cry or fuss once on the way up.  We took him out for some pictures at the falls, and then he fell asleep riding on my back on the way back down.  I loved this as well.  It was very comfortable and didn't hurt my back at all.  The Boba is by far the best carrier I have tried!  It was the perfect thing to have for this hike!

Follow & Connect: You can like Boba on Facebook or follow Boba on Twitter.

Buy It:  You can buy the Boba 3G for $125.00 from their website or find a store near you.

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Saturday, April 20, 2013

Sprout Organic Baby Food {Review & Giveaway}

Sprout Organic Baby Food Review & Giveaway
Sprout is the original pouch baby food.  They use the pouch because it offers safety, protection, and better food quality in a eco-friendly way.  These pouches are BPA free, resealable, and have a no choke cap.  You can even upcycle your pouches for FREE!  Sprout has partnered with Terracycle to repurpose your packaging.  Check out more information about that program here.

Sprout baby food was co-founded by 15-year Food Network veteran Tyler Florence—trusted chef, author and father of three—to encourage healthy eating habits early on and provide products that are better for children and for the environment.  Sprout uses a variety of flavors that are baby friendly and provide a good balance of nutrition and flavor for your child.  They use only the best organic fruits, veggies, grains, and proteins to make their baby food.  Click here for a complete list of ingredients that Sprout includes in their specially made baby food. From the simplest two ingredient recipes to more complex combinations, Sprout has made it easy for baby to try new foods and flavors. They really offer some unique gourmet flavor combinations! 

They sent us 4 different flavors to try:  Carrot, Apple, & Mango, Sweet Potato, Pear, Kiwi & Spinach, and Peach, Berry, Oatmeal, & Quinoa.  Baby Boy loved them all!  I tried them all as well and they really were delicious.  I'm not surprised about how much he liked them!  I was a little worried he may not be a fan of the Peach, Berry, Oatmeal, & Quinoa flavor because he hasn't tried a lot of grains, but there was no need to worry- he scarfed it right down!  You can see from the picture how bright and nutritious this baby food looks.  There is no doubt that you are feeding your baby quality ingredients with this baby food.

Follow & Connect:  You can Like Sprout on Facebook and follow them on Twitter.  You can also watch Sprout on YouTube.

Buy It:  You can buy Sprout Organic Baby Food on their website or find a store near you.

Win It:  You can enter to win the same Sprout pouches I tried using the Rafflecopter below! 
Giveaway ends 5/3.  Open to the US.

Winner: Marianne S.

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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Springtime Yarn & Flower Wreath {DIY}

I love making wreaths. Can you tell? This is only the third wreath tutorial I've done so far. ;) 
This wreath is so so easy to make.  Plus, it's super easy to personalize for your own tastes and color scheme depending on what you love.  I originally found this idea on This Girls Life. 

You only need a couple of things: Styrofoam wreath, yarn, silk flowers, hot glue gun, and ribbon.  I used the Effervesce Yarn.  It seems extra soft and kinda gives the wreath a soft fluffy edge unlike plain yarn.

Basically all I did was wrap my yarn all around the foam wreath.  I did this in small sections.  I actually didn't use any glue when I did this until the very end.  I would just wrap the yarn around the end pieces to keep them in place.  That kept this looking nice and clean.  I hot glued the last piece on the back of the wreath.  Then, I hot glued the flowers in place where I wanted them.  Last, I found some matching ribbon that I already had and made a hanging loop around the top of the wreath to hang it on the door.  It's seriously that simple.  You can make this wreath what ever you want by changing up the yarn colors and flower choices. 

So, go spring up your door!
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Monday, April 8, 2013

Happy Anniversary! {A look back at one of the best days of my life}

Three years ago today I got to marry the man of my dreams in the place I had always dreamed of getting married, Hawaii.  I had said I wanted to get married in Hawaii before I even met my husband, but I don't think anyone actually believed that I'd get married there- until they got their invitation in the mail!  We were lucky enough to have 30 of our closest friends and family there with us to celebrate on a gorgeous day.  So, here's a look back...
Where we got married- Wai'alae Beach Park, Honolulu, Hawaii.
 The best bridesmaids!
The decor. (Reception on deck at Outrigger Reef on the Beach)
Right after we were married!
Our first dance as Mr. & Mrs.
Cutting the cake!

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Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Nuby Tickle Toes Giveaway

Welcome to the Nuby Tickle Toes Giveaway, April 3-12
Thanks to Nûby, My Life: A Work in Progress is hosting her first Nuby giveaway! One reader will win a Nûby Tickle Toes plush toy of his or her choice. *In stock items onlyTickle Toes Collection 
Fun, soft, perfectly-shaped and sized for little hands, Tickle Toes plush toys giggle along with your little one at the squeeze of a foot! Read Elisebet's review of the Tickle Toes Monkey HERE and watch a video of the toy chuckling in action!

Nuby Tickle Toes Monkey

Terms & Conditions:
Sweepstakes open to residents of the US. Must be 18 years or older. Void where prohibited by law. Odds of winning depend on total number of eligible entries received. Winner chosen via Random.org. Once winner has been selected and emailed, winner will have 48 hours to respond or new winner will be selected. Winner’s first name and last initial will be posted on this blog and other social media and Web sites. My Life: A Work in Progress and My Life According to Pinterest are not responsible for prize fulfillment. Entrance into the sweepstakes indicates acceptance of these terms and conditions.

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