Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Here's A Halloween Candy Parents Will Love



Earlier today my son told me he did not want to be Michael Jackson for Halloween.  He now wants to be Dracula.  Is it really that time of year?  Since he is thinking of costumes I guess I need to be thinking about protecting his teeth and giving out the best candy to trick or treaters.  

Halloween is a fun and exciting time for kids, but a destructible and toxic time for their teeth.  As a parent, how do you stop your child from partaking in the joy that is trick-or-treating? With the help of the 11th annual Halloween Candy Buy Back program, in which local dentists “buy” back kids’ Halloween candy in exchange for product packages, cash, or other incentives, Halloween can be enjoyable for kids, parents, and even US troops overseas!  This year, the program wants to promote a positive dental health message and hope to introduce kids to the great tasting, natural sweetener, xylitol.  While most children enjoy the taste of regular sugar candy, it is neither good for the child’s oral health or body.  Their product packages will be full of goodies including xylitol candy provided by Xlear Inc. which tastes great and is actually beneficial to your child’s health!

Founded in 2005 by Dr. Chris Kammer, the Halloween Candy Buy Back Program began as a way to keep excess Halloween candy “off the streets” and help keep kids’ mouths healthier. This year, the program is moving to be a force for good by teaming up with Xlear Inc., the leading manufacturers of xylitol products, and Tess Oral Health, makers of dental, professional, and oral hygiene products. Together they will partner with dental offices nationwide to reach the goal of sending 100,000 toothbrushes overseas as well collect children’s Halloween candy to give the soldiers a holiday away from home.  This simple act of kindness enables children to exchange their Halloween candy and receive a token in return while showing love and support to our men and women fighting for our country every day.

The idea of participating in the Halloween Candy Buy Back Program and handing out a healthy candy option is perfect for me.

SparX Halloween Candy from  Xlear, Inc.  candy come in three great flavors: Natural Fruit, Natural Berry, and Natural Citrus. These naturally-flavored candy “dots” are loved by kids and parents alike, and are available for a limited time at xlear.com for $4.32




Disclosure: Product/compensation was received in exchange for post.
Don't be afraid to be free!!!

How Do I Feel About Eating At Sharky's Woodfired Mexican Grill? @sharkyssocial



I have always felt good about dining at Sharky's Wood Fired Mexican Grill, but after attending an event at the new Sharky's Northridge location I do not panic because I know I am eating organic.

Sharky's meals are made to accommodate a variety of different lifestyles from health oriented to socially conscious eating styles. They strive to create a unique assortment of dishes that meet many different diet choices.

For about 10 years I have not been eating avocados.  Recently I have started eating them again.  When a bowl of guacamole was placed in front of me, I began to scoop small amounts onto my chips and discovered not only could I eat it, it was delicious!  I did not want to eat too much because, I had to save room for my meal.  I then decided I just sip on my lemonade.


Like I said, I have dined at Sharky's before, but I have been a pretty basic customer.  I was unaware that Sharky's had strawberry and cilatro lemonade.  After the first sip I was hooked.  The combination of flavors was awesome!


While dining out I usually select healthier options, so I had a full size power plate.  It consisted of wild caught wild salmon, organic quinoa with veggies, organic Mexican style rice and a side salad.



I absolutely loved my salad with organic greens.  



My daughter has been eating light and very small portions.  She decided to have a half size power plate.  She had salmon  as well with black beans and broccoli.  She ate half of everything and took the rest home.


My son is no stranger to Sharky's because, he is rewarded throughout the school year at his school with a Sharky's certificates that allow him to get a kids meal.  I usually order him a kids bowl, but this time he placed his own order and decided he wanted the quesadilla with organic Mexican rice.



We could not resist dessert.  Have you seen how huge the cookies are?  I had to try the snickerdoodle.  My son had chocolate chip cookie and I think my daughter had white chocolate and macadamia nut.  Yummy....


We have been to our local Sharky's several times and have branched out of our comfort zone.

Disclosure: Product/compensation was received in exchange for review.
Don't be afraid to be free!!!

Monday, August 31, 2015

Things Are Getting Spicy In My Kitchen @rawspicebar



I am about to go on a cooking adventure with RawSpiceBar.  

RawSpiceBar, is a monthly subscription box delivering small batch, freshly ground spice blends. They collaborate with top chefs to create 3-4 spice blends from a different region each month.  They also include fun, easy to cook recipes in each box.  Most importantly, their mission is to offer their spice blends at an affordable rate of $6/month- in an effort to avoid the huge markup of spices at grocery stores.





Each monthly spice box contains 1-2 ounces of spice blends, creating three dishes for serving 8-10. All subscribers will also receive kitchen-tested, detailed recipes and ideas for each spice blend they receive. RawSpiceBar partners with award winning chefs, bloggers and source old family recipes to bring you unique spice blends from the highest quality spices around the world, with an unprecedented focus on quality and flavor. 

I sat searching the site and was pleasantly surprised when I clicked on the our recipes tab.  Oh my goodness....I immediately wanted to make the Baltimore Crab Cake.  The recipes seem to be pretty simple.  Simple is great!  I cannot wait to surprise my family with new delicious foods every month.

I am looking forward to receiving my spices every month this will definitely spice up my kitchen!

Disclosure: Product/compensation was received in exchange for post.
Don't be afraid to be free!!!

Friday, August 28, 2015

We Were Rollin Down the Arkansas River @adventureco



Thanks to the  The Adventure Company  rafting down the Browns Canyon, Arkansas River was one of  the highlights of our summer.

We arrived in Buena Vista, Colorado a couple of days before our rafting trip.  Almost everyone we met would ask if we were going rafting or if we had done so.  White water rafting is the thing to do in Buena Vista.  Well, I guess Colorado.  I kept telling my son and daughter, we are in the mecca of white water rafting.

We were scheduled for a Friday, half day rafting trip that would be from 8:00 a.m. to Noon.  My family arrived promptly at 8:00 a.m.  We checked in, signed waivers and put on our gear.   We were then told to go to a waiting area with all of the other people that were going rafting.  We were then introduced to the tour guides and were supposed to get on the buses that would drive us over.  By this time it was 8:30.  There was a group of people that were running late.  The guides tried to wait, but decided to leave and let them catch up.  We finally made it to the location for our trip to begin.  I think that is when I got a little nervous.  While the tour guides gave us safety tips a bus with the late arrivals pulled up.    After receiving our tips we were each told to grab a side of our designated raft along with our guide.  It was time to go rafting!!!  By this time it was 9:00 a.m.

We were finally in our raft headed down the river.  I was really concerned about my 10 year old son, but I began to calm down after realizing we were going at a nice speed down the river and our guide was very knowledgeable and personable.  

The trip started out slowly and we all wanted more.  The views were amazing as we coasted down Browns Canyon.  It rained while we made are down the river.  I thought it would be cold and ugly, but I loved everything about this day.

When the trip picked up and we moved down the river at what we thought were top speeds, everyone in our raft was thrilled and on a high.   The excitement did not end there.  Our guide gave us an opportunity to get out of the raft.  My son and daughter were the only two, to do so.   Since then they have been telling everyone about this amazing experience.

At about 11:30 our trip came to an end and we were back on the bus headed back to The Adventure Company.   This was not a half day rafting trip it was more like 2 1/2 hours.

Although the time was not what we expected we had a great time.  We have been telling everyone about our trip.  I could not wait to post pictures on Instagram and Facebook.



Disclosure: Product/compensation was received in exchange for review.
Don't be afraid to be free!!!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

This is How I Decorated a Wall With Two Canvas Prints




My wall is almost complete!  I need to paint it, but it looks nice with my new Fara Bell, Touches of Fall II, framed art abstract .

A few months ago I ordered the Fara Bell Touches of Fall I.  It was not the exact size I needed for this particular wall, so I could not wait to order the Fara Bell touches of Fall II to compliment it.

When ordering the second canvas I made sure I ordered the same size.  I was excited because my wall would be complete.

After placing my order framedart.com made sure they let me know when it was in route and the estimated time of delivery.  I did not have to wait long for my painting to arrive, it arrived in a few days.

Upon arrival, I held it up to the wall,  below my first canvas just to see how it would look underneath.  I wanted to place it underneath the first painting because it looked too small.  I knew placing the second painting underneath would fill it out.  I immediately noticed that it it was slightly smaller in width.  I did not put it up for a while because, I was a bit disappointed.  After some time and with house guest coming I finally hung it up.   It did not look too bad.  No one has said anything.  I think I will feel better after the wall is painted.  That may help.

As for the quality of the canvas, it is as I expected.   I really like the colors and the texture.  Both pieces are not cheaply made, they add a bit of flair to my kitchen.

Last night, I was watching the new HBO show Ballers and noticed a family painting.  It was a Fara Bell.  I was excited to see a similar painting to mine on television.

Overall, I do like my new painting I just wish it was sized correctly.  



Disclosure: Product/compensation was received in exchange for review.
Don't be afraid to be free!!!