Thomas Hill Organics Bistro & Wine Bar

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-03-27 at 8.46.01 PM

Thomas Hill Organics Bistro & Wine Bar

xxphoto 3 (2)

“If more of us valued food and cheer and song above hoarded gold, it would be a merrier world.”
? J.R.R. Tolkien

I love spending time in the central coast of CA.  It’s so beautiful there. One of my favorite spots is the Thomas Hill Organics Bistro & Wine Bar in Paso Robles, CA.  The food is so delicious and it’s a great place to hang out with friends.

xIMG_1368

Thomas Hill Organics is a bistro and wine bar dedicated to serving creative, fresh food and highlighting unique wines from the Central Coast.

xyIMG_1343

We had a full 3 course meal and dessert.  Everything was amazing!

xxIMG_1344

The first course salad was my favorite.  It had the most incredible flavors that all blended together with every bite.

xIMG_1347

Everyone at the table raved about the scallops.  I’m allergic to shellfish.

xIMG_1349

So they prepared another amazing salad for me. It was delicious.

xIMG_1364

The steak melted in my mouth and I wanted to lick the sauce.  I ate every bite of every course and didn’t think I could eat anymore …

photo 3 (2)

.. that was until dessert arrived.  It was so decadent and not overly sweet.

photo 2 (2)

We had the chance to meet and talk with the executive chef, Christopher Manning.  Not only was his food divine, he had the gift of pairing wine with food.  The food and wine totally complimented each other.

If you’re in the Paso Robles area, Thomas Hill Organics is a must!

Connect with them:

Signature Donna

donnahup disclosure button

 

Jackpot Candle Review

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-03-24 at 12.41.32 PM

Jackpot Candle Review

xIMG_2742

I’m a huge fan of candles. I love lighting them and letting the aroma fill the air. That also means I’m pretty picky with my scents.  When I was asked to review the Jackpot Candle I was excited – not just because it was a candle, but there was a prize inside!

xIMG_2759

The smell of the candle was very fragrant, but not overpowering.  I also loved waiting for my “surprise” to show up. Thankfully it was closer to the top so I didn’t have to wait very long.

xIMG_2763

I used a spoon to lift out the treasure. I love that it was in a baggie inside the foil so there was no wax on the jewelry.  I waited for it to cool off and peeled it open.

xIMG_2767

Check out the beautiful ring I received! I really like it. It even had a tag with a code so you could check out the value of your jewelry on their site. Mine wasn’t all that much, but I like it and it was a lot of fun. Jackpot Candles are like cracker jack boxes for adults. I got a beautiful candle and a beautiful ring. I’m thrilled.

Connect with them:

Signature Donna

donnahup disclosure button

Get Whiter teeth with Smile Brilliant!

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-03-24 at 9.38.12 AM

Get Whiter teeth with Smile Brilliant!

Smile-Brilliant-Teeth-Whitening-Trays

I brush my teeth daily but they’re definitely not as white as I’d like them to be.  I was really excited to try out the Teeth Whitening Kit from Smile Brilliant!  They included everything that I needed in the kit to whiten my teeth including a tray to make customized trays for my teeth.

xIMG_2785

It came with two types of pastes and a mouthpiece. The instructions seemed simple enough, but it sat on my table for at least a week. I really wanted to get it done and have whiter teeth but I was dreading the mouth piece. I gagged at the thought of making a mold.

xIMG_2787

I finally gave in and decided to just try it. I started by mixing the the two pastes together.

xIMG_2788

It was easy enough and the smell was pretty pleasant.

xIMG_2789

Then came the mouth guard and I had to leave it in for 2 whole minutes!  Okay, so it was totally not as bad as I thought. I think the fact that you did the upper and lower separately really helped.  I set the timer on my phone and was done in no time.

Screen Shot 2015-03-24 at 9.25.17 AM

I sent away my molds and got my mouth pieces pretty quickly.  Now on to the even easier part – the gel.  Everything has step by step directions and it’s so easy to use. I’ve seen great results and I can  totally tell it’s working.

TOW-Ross-Teeth-6-08-friends-2946378-780-596

I like that it’s happening more naturally too. I would hate to have bright white teeth like Ross did on Friends ;)

Do you want whiter teeth? You definitely need to check out Smile Brilliant!

Connect with them:

Signature Donna

 

donnahup disclosure button

Bottle Pets Review

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-03-11 at 12.54.56 PM

Bottle Pets Review

x10857097_455785837911804_2623466711475947279_o

Leo the Bottle Pet Lion

Leo is the name my kids have given to our new Bottle Pet. He is cute, soft, and cuddly! The material is amazingly soft and comforting to little ones learning to hold their bottle. It actually invites them to hold the bottle earlier because of the softness and the arms of the Bottle Pets give them something easier to hold on to instead of a slippery bottle.

x11044591_455785827911805_8986794863706169321_o

When our little guy wasn’t using Leo as a bottle holder my older kids also loved using our Bottle Pet as a puppet to entertain and interact with him.

Our bottle pet works better with the 8 to 10 oz bottles rather than the 4 to 6oz bottles. The bigger bottles were able to stand on their own while the smaller ones had to be laid on their sides risking the bottle leaking. The bottle pet also had to be taken off and on instead of sliding easily into the bottle holder of our diaper bag, but that was easily overlooked as it was easy and quick to simply slide the bottles in and out of the wide insert of the bottle pet.

x1799979_455785817911806_4215756514113096697_o

I love that I can easily throw it into the washing machine for easy cleaning and it’s ready to be used once again. The bottle pet is a cute and creative solution to adding comfort to feeding our little one! I picked the lion bottle pet because I loved the inscription Jesus Loves Me on its back. Something I really want my son to know.

Right now, they’re offering all our readers 10% off their purchase! Just use coupon code dh10 at checkout!

Connect with them:

robin sigdonnahup disclosure button

 

 

 

 

 

Summerwood Inn – The Perfect Wine Country Experience

Yum

 

press trip disclaimer Summerwood Inn

The Perfect Wine Country Experience

qIMG_1312

I love to travel for many reasons. I love new adventures and discovering new places.  Another reason I enjoy traveling is to relax and just enjoy the beauty around me.  I had the opportunity to stay at the Summerwood Inn in Paso Robles, CA this past fall and fell in love with it. It has to be one of my favorite places to stay.

xIMG_1280

The Inn itself and my room were so inviting and relaxing.  The bed and comforter were very comfortable. There’s nothing worse than a bad sleep on a vacation and wanting to go home to your own bed. I didn’t want to leave this one.

xIMG_1281

They did have a wifi and a desk so that I could check my email, but I was barely on the computer because there was too much to enjoy.

xIMG_1288

My room overlooked this courtyard which was even more beautiful at night.

xIMG_1300_2

xIMG_1296

Behind the Inn was the winery. It was so peaceful.

xDSC_0077

Chef Kelly Wangard is responsible for the decorating and the amazing cuisine. She also won Cut Throat Kitchen.  We were watching the Food Network and the repeat came on. I got this great pic of Kelly watching herself.

xDSC_0075-001

There is a reason Kelly won. Her food is so delicious.

xIMG_1306

You could order breakfast the night before and it was prepared for you in the morning. The Eggs Benedict just melted in your mouth and it was served with a side of greens and potatoes.

xDSC_0081

In the evening Kelly had wine and h’ordeuvres for us and dessert, coffee, and tea in the evening.

xIMG_1290

Then you could unwind with a hot bath and their exclusive bath soaps and lotions – they smell amazing!

xDSC_0073

You could curl up and read a book or check out the surrounding area. I highly recommend doing both.

xIMG_1313

No matter what your reason is for taking a vacation Summerwood Inn is the perfect place to stay while you’re in wine country.

Connect with them:

Signature Donna

donnahup disclosure button

The DUFF – Movie Review plus Interviews with the Cast!

Yum

 

movie disclaimerThe Duff

The Duff Poster

The Duff is a new teen comedy based on the 2010 Novel by Kody Keplinger. Quirky, relatable, and laugh out loud funny (I’m not kidding), the adaption of this beloved YA book does a beautiful job of taking the core ideas behind the story and translating it to screen. Earlier this month I had the chance to listen in on a conference call with Robbie Amell, Mae Whitman, and Bella Thorne. Here are some of my favorite questions fellow high school students asked.

TheDuff_Bella_CharacterPoster-800x1185

Q: So, how did it feel playing a mean girl in the movie since in most of your roles you’re really preppy and stuff?

Bella Thorne: It was very interesting. The hardest part was having to be mean to Mae, because number one, she’s five foot, she is so cute and mini-sized and I’m 5’8″, and I had to be towering over and I just felt like I was digesting her the whole movie.

TheDuff_Mae_CharacterPoster-800x1185

Q: Mae and Robbie, did any of you experience this kind of social phenomena when you were in high school?

Mae Whitman: I did. I definitely was bullied and called weird names, and stuff. And that’s a big reason why I was drawn to doing this movie to sort of communicate that.  A lot of people go through this and that I certainly had. So I wanted to use my experience to sort of make people feel less alone. It gets better after school. It definitely gets better.

theduff

Robbie Amell: I grew up in Toronto where everybody is polite and apologizes for everything. So I had a very tame high school experience but you know I always would have stood up and would stand up for anybody that was getting bullied or that I saw get bullied just because it’s such a silly and stupid thing to do. 

Q: What about the idea of The Duff and that kind of high school set the interest in doing for trying these different characters?

Mae Whitman: For me, I like the idea of sort of breaking down the need for people to compare, and judge, and keep people down, and keep people in specific boxes. I think it’s really limiting for everyone involved and it’s just not real. And it’s hard when you don’t really have any perspective, especially when you’re in school. And everything feels so present and so there, and it really hurts. But I wanted to try to provide a perspective that none of that stuff is real and you don’t have to participate in anything that doesn’t feel like it makes you the best version of who you are. That people that try to drag you down or put you in a box it’s usually because they’re insecure and threatened by you. So I just really wanted to kind of provide a little bit of perspective because I was bullied in school too. So it was important to me to communicate that you know the coolest kids in the world are bullied, just like me. I’m the coolest kid in the world.

Robbie Amell: And it was super refreshing to read a teen comedy script that kind of grasps what it’s like to be in high school. You know everybody is trying to find their way and figure out who they are. And dealing with their own issues and issues with friends, and other people. So it was just nice to see that in something that actually turned out to be so funny.

Bella Thorne: I really favor the dialogue over, like I love the dialogue. It’s been so hard to try and communicate that. There are so many movies that have tried it and failed. So hopefully, ours will do well because it’s really, really funny guys. Seriously funny.

842c0342c0bab40a291b42d02a0e1f8d

Q: So my question for you guys is, what was your favorite scene in the film?

Robbie Amell: We had a lot of fun. Part of making a movie is you spend you know 12 to 15 hours a day with the people you’re shooting with. So you just have to hope for the best and that they’re good people. And we got really lucky, we got an incredible cast. It was almost like summer camp. We just got to have a lot of fun every day, you know make fun of each other. And one of my favorite scenes in the film in the movie was Think Rock. And they gave Mae and I kind of free reign on the dialogue. We just got to goof around and have a good time. And it was raining on and off so we had to run in and out of the rain. It was just kind of a weird day of filming and it ended up being a lot of fun. Bella was in near the end of the day, and she came in and we all just had a good time. You know some people came to visit because it was a beautiful location. It was that kind of stand out for me as a real fun special day of filming.

Q: There’s lots of teen movies like Clueless and Mean Girls that portray the heroin is needing to be fixed in some ways, to fit in, so how would you say the Duff is different?

Mae Whitman: Well, I will say one thing that I thought was really cool about this movie from the beginning is that she doesn’t change who she is the whole time. You know she kind of tries on different clothes, and it was like, “Whoa, what do I need to do in order to make high school easier for me?” But she never changes her personality or who she is, or  any of that. And I think that’s what’s really cool because oftentimes it’s like, oh the big makeover, or the (thing). And it’s not, the big reveal here is her being like I don’t need this, I don’t need to feel that way. It’s more illuminating the process of what makes people feel like they need to change rather than actually anybody changing. And just more about like realizing that people usually try to make other people feel like they don’t fit in because they’re threatened or they’re insecure. And so I think it’s a really cool thing to sort of shed some light on and help people get a perspective on that you know just because other people are insecure and try to put you in a box. It has nothing to do with you. It’s their problem.

Robbie Amell: Also you know it’s a bit of a spoiler, the main relationship that comes out of it, it’s not on aesthetic thing, these people you know the guy that Bianca ends up with isn’t who she wanted to be with from the beginning of the movie. You know that wasn’t the dream guy for her. It’s really the relationship that these people build and come to find within each other throughout the movie.

Bella Thorne: Yes, they break their own stereotypes of themselves and of each other. And really see each other for the layered and complex individuals that they are, and they find themselves.

My review

Ok! So I read the book at the start of January and ABSOLUTELY fell in love with it.  This was totally my kind of story, I often feel that contemporary YA books glamorize high school into something it’s not, but Keplinger’s story felt so honest. If you HAVEN’T read the book, go see this movie. If you HAVE read this book, go see this movie. I’m not kidding when I say that I think many readers will be happily surprised with the changes the filmmakers made, and non-readers won’t know the difference.  The major changes in storyline seemed, to me at least, inevitable. It makes the movie not only much more approachable for parents to let their kids see, but also helped keep the rating at PG-13. I can’t imagine what an adaption that stayed absolutely faithful to the book’s plot would have been like…I don’t think it would have been made. Anyways…. onto the juicy bits.

_N8A4266.NEF

The dialogue in this movie is hilarious. It’s honestly been a while since I laughed at a movie. What’s great about this film is that it doesn’t take its own humor too seriously. They’re not gunning for you to understand every joke and gag, it feels like they genuinely just threw things in there because they themselves got a kick out of it. This movie also doesn’t play down the teenage-aspect of its humor though. Be warned if you’re taking younger teens/kids to this movie, there are a few risqué bits, but they’re all done with reasonable good taste. I still crack up every time I think about Bianca’s monster voice.

The characters are some of my favorites. They felt less cookie cutter American high school students, and more like…Bianca your best friend. Granted, yes, Bella Thorne’s character Madison is the “mean girl”. And okay Wesley is a “football jock”, but they’re portrayed with much more honestly then usual. I just loved the characters okay? I can’t help it.

bella-thorne-duff-05

Now for those of you who have made it ¾ of the way through this review and don’t know what a DUFF is, let me explain. A “DUFF” is a designated, ugly, fat, friend. Bianca is labeled by Wesley as the “DUFF” of her friend group. He says that it doesn’t necessarily make her fat or ugly, but that she’s the DUFF in comparison to her two best friends, Casey and Jess, who are tall, skinny, and hot. This is a hard topic to deal with, because I think at one point or another we’ve all felt, or will feel, like we’re the DUFF of our group.  I know that for some the name and concept might steer them away from the movie or the book, but once you’ve seen the film (or read the book, or both) you’ll not only understand a whole lot more about the word, but also about yourself.

The DUFF is a new classic, with great humor and a story line to match. From flash-forwards, to over the top internal moments of celebration, this film is, dare I say it, the Mean Girls for an entirely new generation. You won’t be sorry if you take the time to see this film, in fact, you might even thank me because in the end, we’re all DUFFS.  

EmmyLou Sig

donnahup disclosure button

McFarland,USA Movie Review

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-02-16 at 9.11.52 PM

McFarland,USA Movie Review

mcfarland 2

McFarland, USA is a story a great struggle and triumph. It takes place in, you guessed it, McFarland, California, a poverty stricken real life city in the southern part of the state. The city is home to many Latino families who work the farm fields to survive. Even high schoolers, who get up before the crack of dawn every morning to work the fields before going to school, and return to them after school ends. It’s a vicious cycle that engulfs many young students who feel they have no choice but to continue to help support their families by working. Cue Walter White, the new bio teacher, and makeshift track coach who see’s the potential in this unlikely lot of kids. The audience then has the chance to follow along on this uphill journey as the boys train and ready themselves to compete against highly selective Cross Country teams from surrounding cities.

mcfarland 1

            So what separates this sports movie from all the rest? Plain and simple, it’s ability to tell not only a true story, but also one filled with honest inspiration. Think Field of Dreams good. Through the movie the characters deal with racial issues, tough competition, and learning to fight one’s inner demons, as well as finding their true passions.

            This film is nothing short of beautiful. It’s raw and although it tells the story of McFarland’s Cross Country Team of 1987, it still holds its relevance to today. With a wonderful mix of sports and story, McFarland ,USA will give you a completely new perspective into the lives of these teens and their families. I can honestly not rave enough about this story. It’s a wonderful film for the whole family. McFarland, USA is a tale of hard work and achievement that is a can’t miss of 2015.

EmmyLou Sig

donnahup disclosure button

Monroe and Main Stunning Spring Fashions! #MMSpring

Yum

 

*This is a Fashionista Event Opportunity, and is hosted by Still Blonde after all these YEARS and Modly Chic.

Monroe and Main

Stunning Spring Fashions! #MMSpring

I love Spring – the warmer temps, flowers and sunshine.  While the first day of spring begins March 20th here in north Iowa it sometimes waits a little longer to thaw out and we begin with a more “white” spring than most.  That’s okay though with me. In fact I’m already starting my spring collection with some fun clothes I found over at Monroe and Main.

xIMG_2694

This outfit is so fun! I paired the Jenna Embroidered Tunic with the Lola Stretch Slim Jeans.  I know I’ve seen a lot of white the last few months but I’ve been wearing lots of dark clothes. These white jeans feel and look fresh and they’re very comfortable.

xIMG_2704

I’m able to run and jump with ease. The tunic is also very comfortable and I love that it can be worn as a casual outfit or dressed up depending on what you pair with it.

xIMG_2705

My husband told me I looked hot and that confirmed it – this is my new favorite outfit! Monroe Main have so many styles to choose from and they have a HUGE selection.  In celebration I’ve teamed up with them to give away a Stunning Spring prize package! But wait, there’s more! (I totally said that in a TV salesperson voice) There are 26 other bloggers giving away the same prize package. That means there will be 27 winners! You can enter on the rafflecopter below than tour the linky below that and see the other bloggers’ spring fashions and enter to win their prize pack!

$110 Prize Package Giveaway:

20150211_Pinterest_SprFashion2

*Open to the US only. Ends March 2nd, 2015 at 11:59pm ET.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Giveaway ends March 2nd at 11:59 PM EST. No purchase is necessary to enter. Void where prohibited by law. The odds of winning are based on the number of entries received Open to US, 18+ only. Confirmed Winner(s) (by Random.org) will be contacted by email. Winner(s) have 24 hours to respond before a new winner is chosen. No purchase necessary. Void where prohibited by law. The sponsor(s) will be responsible for product shipment to winner(s) of this giveaway. My blog is not responsible for product shipment/delivery. This event is in no way administered, sponsored, or endorsed by, or associated with, Facebook and/or Twitter, Google, Pinterest. This disclosure is done in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 10 CFR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.


I Forgive You helps teach Kids Forgiveness

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 2.38.49 PM

 

I Forgive You helps teach Kids Forgiveness

xDSCN0185

Oh how we love the I Forgive You book by Nicole Lataif. Nicole does such an amazing job with explaining big important concepts in a way that a child can understand.

xDSCN0183

Forgiveness is often times a concept that children don’t get-its more or less words they are told to say. Its not always easy to explain everything and so much easier to say ‘because I said so’! So I loved getting to sit down with my daughter, reading the book and talking about real forgiveness!

xDSCN0184

The pictures in the story really brought her words to life! Please don’t stop coming out with children’s books Nicole!! Can’t wait to see what is next!

Written by award-winning author, Nicole Lataif, and illustrated by whimsical artist, Katy Betz. Published by:Pauline Books and Media.

“Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” –Ephesians 4:32

I Forgive You teaches children that

  • we do a lot of things right, but when we don’t, God forgives us every time;
  • we are called to forgive others as God forgives us;
  • forgiveness is a process that may take time and include consequences;
  • true friendship has forgiveness;
  • holding grudges and feeding anger hurts us most;
  • choosing forgiveness brings us peace.

Signature Diane

donnahup disclosure button

Van’s Gluten Free Giveaway

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-02-12 at 11.19.33 AM 

Van’s Granola

On-the-run snacking has never been so sensible! #review

Due to the fact that I can’t eat glutens, I often have to carry snacks in my purse. Not everyone thinks about gluten allergies or sensitivities when they set up lunches or hors d’oeuvres at events.  I always try to eat before so I’m not hungry, but I do keep gluten free snacks in my purse in case I get hungry.  I recently found Van’s Granola and I really like it.

file_2107

My favorite is the Blueberry Walnut Granola.

Meet Van’s Soft Baked Granola. From morning snacks, to re-energizing an afternoon of family fun, Van’s Blueberry Walnut Granola was made to sweeten up your day. Packaged into bite-sized morsels, they’re perfect for on-the-go snacking and packed with 12 grams of whole grains and deliciously plump blueberries. We’re sure our gluten free granola will be your snack-time, any-time favorite. Granola for breakfast? That’s so yesterday.

I eat it straight from the bag! It’s really good and keeps me full.  Their granola also comes in Cranberry Almond.  And you even you don’t stick to a gluten free diet you can totally enjoy this granola!  It’s so good!

Connect with them:

Now, onto the giveaway!

Vans Button

Van’s has so much more than Granola too! They have Cereals, Crackers, French Toast, Pasta, Chips, and more! In fact, they’ve been nice enough to offer one of our readers 5 free product coupons so you can try their yummy food too!  All you have to do is enter on the rafflecopter below!

*Giveaway is open to the US only. Ends 2/18/15 at 11:59pm CT.  Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

donnahup disclosure button

Spanish for Kids by Kids

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-02-09 at 9.30.29 PM

Spanish for Kids by Kids

Untitled

As a homeschooling mom when I look for curriculum I want it to motivate and inspire my kid’s, but I also want it to be fun. We definitely found it in Foreign Languages for Kids by Kids! In the first video Basketballs aren’t for Breakfast we were introduced to three brothers who through repetition and clear simple words introduced my kids to basic Spanish words. The first day we watched the videos my eight year old was intrigued by it, but my five year olds didn’t show very much interest. The next day we watched it again, but this time even my five year olds were engaged in the video and were starting to repeat the words back. By the third day my eight year old and my five year olds were walking around the house speaking the Spanish words they had learned with each other.

Untitled2

It truly has been amazing to watch how quickly my kids picked up the Spanish words. I was anticipating needing a three to four week span to truly know if the videos were making a difference. Low and behold they picked it up much quicker than I had imagined. Within a few days they were even starting to say the words and sentences before the boys in the video.

Untitled3

The videos come with workbooks and stickers which I am excited to begin with our eight year old. The stickers are a fabulous addition to the videos helping to remind our kids of the words we are learning in the videos. There is also an optional game which can be purchased along with the videos to help reinforce in a fun way what they have already been hearing in the videos. Encouraging learning in a way were they do not even realize they are learning!

We would highly recommend these videos to any family who is looking to expose and immerse their kids in a foreign language. The videos are put together in a way that makes learning the language easy and fun, sparking a love of the Spanish language.

robin sig

donnahup disclosure button

Project Almanac Movie Review

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-02-01 at 11.25.47 PM

Project Almanac Movie Review

MV5BMTUxMjQ2NjI4OV5BMl5BanBnXkFtZTgwODc2NjUwNDE@._V1_SX214_AL_

This past week I was invited to see an early screening of the new upcoming teen time traveling thriller, Project Almanac. Going in I didn’t have much prior knowledge about the film, or very big expectations for that matter. I figured it was just going to be another teen-gimmick movie, and in some respects it was. But what caught my attention was the fact that it was what I WISHED every “found footage” movie was like. It did so many things right, which balanced out a few elements that felt over done.

The film is shot as though the characters themselves are filming it. Was it over played at some points? Yes. Would it have been beneficial to have a nice steady cam going during some of the scenes? Of course. But unlike other movies that have attempted to add this feature, Project Almanac succeeds in not letting it deter you away from the actual story.

The characters are oddly likable. You have the “popular girl” and the “science nerds” but their actions and characteristics are far more grounded in reality than other films aimed at the adolescent age group. I genuinely connected and enjoyed watching them deal with their discoveries.

If you’ve ever heard or seen the movie Chronicle, and been disappointed, I suggest you give this film a try. I think this film accomplishes what other movies have tried so very hard to do. It’s everything you wanted Chronicle to be, and more. Project Almanac is a throughly entertaining, funny, and thought provoking film that you HAVE to see before passing judgement.

EmmyLou Sig

donnahup disclosure button

Wyman’s – The Benefits of Fruit Made Easy

Yum

 

Screen Shot 2015-01-29 at 4.42.48 PM

Wyman’s – The Benefits of Fruit Made Easy!

landing-product

I love fresh fruit, but unfortunately not all fruits are in season when I’m craving them.  I’ve learned that frozen fruit is fantastic to keep on hand to satisfy my fruit cravings.  I recently tried Wyman’s of Maine.

Wyman’s of Maine brings you the finest quality fruit from our own fields and from family farms around the world. Our premium fruit is fresh frozen at harvest—when flavor and healthy goodness are at their peak—making it easy to enjoy the benefits of fruit every day.

All natural, with no sugar added, Wyman’s frozen fruit is just as nutritious as fresh and is convenient to use, right out of the bag. Simply fantastic!

product-mixed-berries_0_0

The Mixed Berry is my favorite.  I often eat a bowl of these mixed berries as a sweet treat after dinner.  They’re great to use in baking too!

My favorite way to prepare the fruit is by preparing a bowl of healthy berry ice cream!

  • 1 – 2 cups of frozen mixed berries
  • 2 – 3 Tbl of heavy cream
  • ½ tsp of Truvia or sweetener
  • A teeny drizzle of organic vanilla

1. In a small container, put in your cream, Truvia and vanilla. Stir and let the flavors meld for a few minutes.

2. Put the mixed berries in a bowl and drizzle with cream mixture.

3. Enjoy!

They have several varieties such as Wild Blueberries, Strawberries, Red Raspberries, Mango Chunks, Mixed Berries (Wild Blueberries, Strawberries, Raspberries, Blackberries), Triple Berry Blend (Blueberries, Raspberries, Blackberries), Blueberries, Strawberries, and Mango Chunks.

Six good reasons to fill your freezer with Wyman’s:

  1. Superior fruit: Picked at the peak of flavor and healthy goodness
  2. Nutritional value: Fresh-frozen at harvest and just as nutritious as fresh
  3. Convenience: Quick and easy to use in your favorite recipes
  4. Year-round availability: Delicious, colorful variety that’s always in season
  5. Easy, resealable bags: Use only what you need
  6. Long-lasting quality: An excellent value for your dollar!

Connect with them:

Signature Donna

donnahup disclosure button

Make Fabio Viviani’s Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes

Yum

 

press trip disclaimer

Make Fabio Viviani’s Homemade Pasta

in just 3 Minutes

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

I had the opportunity to attend Savor the Central Coast this past fall and it was fabulous! It was held in the beautiful central coast of California. One of my highlights was meeting Chef Fabio Viviani and sitting in on his seminar.

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

All I can say when you listen to Fabio is to be prepared for some culinary entertainment! He is a Celebrity Chef, restaurateur, and best sellling cookbook author Viviani, Fan Favorite of Bravo TV “Top Chef” Season 5, “Top Chef All Stars” Season 10 competitor, and star of “Life After Top Chef”.

He taught us how to make our own Duck Sausage Fabio-style and my favorite new recipe – Homemade Pasta in 3 Minutes!

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

I can totally see why Fabio was voted fan favorite on “Top Chef“.  He is hilarious.  If you don’t like cooking I believe he could change your mind.

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

He explained the difference between “Italian measurements” and “American measurements”.  When a recipe calls for a tablespoon, rather than measuring and leveling a tablespoon he just takes a spoon and guestimates.  It makes more sense and that’s the my Slovenian grandmother cooked too.

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

He also encouraged cooking with wine. Speaking of that, you should check out his new wine collection!

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

I always feel like it’s so easy to follow the pros at these seminars and then I can never duplicate it at home. That was not the case with Fabio. He made it very easy to remember and repeat.

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

Making homemade pasta could not be easier.  You combine 4 eggs, 12 tbsp flour, a pinch of salt, a little pepper, and a touch of olive oil. Blend the ingredients in the food processor until it “hoola hoops”.  It sounds silly, but you’ll see it roll around the sides.  If it’s a little sticky, add more flour.

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

I rolled mine into thin “snakes” then cut them in little pieces.  I smushed them with my thumb to make these fun shapes.

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

I brought a pot of water to a boil and dropped the pasta in.  When the pasta floats, it is cooked. It literally took no more than 3 minutes!

Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

The results were delicious! I will never eat boxed pasta again. I love that I can make my pasta gluten free too!

Signature Donna Make Fabio Viviani's Homemade Pasta in just 3 Minutes #recipe #boom #savorCC #SunsetSavor

Connect with Fabio:

Connect with Sunset SAVOR the Central Coast:

donnahup disclosure button

Low Carb is Much Tastier than Low Fat

Yum

 

Low Carb is Much Tastier than Low Fat

Plan Z Chicken Enchilada Bowl

One of my favorite lunches is the Chicken Enchilada bowl above. It’s so easy to make and I even use real cream in it!  I know there’s this idea that diet food has to taste gross. Honestly, I used to believe it too.  I mean I’ve had some of those prepackaged and powdered meal and well, let’s say they leave a lot to desire.

I learned that they taste gross because they’re low fat. I mean have you ever tasted the difference between low fat and full fat anything?   When you take the fat out of food it doesn’t taste good anymore.

I have tried more than one diet that included packaged meals and they were awful. They looked really good but they tasted like cardboard and I got bored really fast. It was so hard to stay on the diet and it made me crave flavorful foods even more.

Plan Z Steak and Balsamic Onions Button

It’s totally different with Plan Z. I have been making the most delicious meals on plan Z and they have a HUGE database with tons of yummy low carb recipes. In fact, they’re even offering FREE recipes!

I’ve tried multiple diets. This is the first one that has worked and the first one I’ve really enjoyed.  I had no clue that low carb could taste so good.  I really enjoy eating “real” food.

Are you ready to change your life and lose weight like I have? Do you want more information? Head on over to Plan Z Diet and watch their video to find out more.

Connect with Plan Z:

Signature Donna Getting through the Holidays with the help of Plan Z  #lowcarb #LCHF #diet #planz