Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Party in Your PJs! #116

2 comments:
Welcome to Party in Your PJs!

Happy Tuesday!  Welcome to the Party in Your PJs Link Party, where your posts will be seen on four different blogs each week.   In addition to Kim from The Cookie Puzzle, you'll also find Party in Your PJs every Tuesday evening at Grandma IdeasWood of Bell Trees and... here!

You'll still find the Awesome Life Friday link up here at RCHReviews, every Thursday evening at 8pm ET so we hope to see you there as well.


Are you ready to party? I can't wait to see what you've brought to share!



Kim ~ The Cookie Puzzle | Facebook | Pinterest 
Nina ~ Grandma Ideas | Pinterest | Twitter
Lynda ~ Reviews, Chews & How-Tos | Facebook | Pinterest
Heather ~ Woods of Bell Trees | Facebook | Instagram

 Meet the Co-Hosts

Kim @ The Cookie Puzzle 

Kim is a small town girl who love simple things. Simple cookies, simple crafts and simple people. She is a wife, mother to one son and two adorable fur babies. Slightly addicted to reality TV and sitcoms, but she loves curling up with a good book or a good walk while listening to podcasts. You can find her at The Cookie Puzzle, where she shares her love for cookies and crafting. 

Nina @ Grandma Ideas 

How is this: Nina is wildly in love with her grandchildren. She delights in doing activities with them that strengthen their relationship –- playing games, doing crafts, snuggling, reading stories to them, and cooking together. She enjoys reading, technology, and traveling. (Tahiti is her most favorite place on earth!)

Lynda @ Reviews, Chews & How-Tos 

Lynda lives outside DC with her husband Michael and elderly beagle, Sadie. She and her daughter Jackie started RCHReviews as a way to spend time together in spite of living across country, and along the way they've added several friends as regular contributors. Between them all, they bring together many different perspectives and lifestyles with one common philosophy - try new things, have fun, and remember you are awesome!

 Heather @ Wood of Bell Trees

Heather is a wife of a peanut butter fanatic and mom of one silly human and one furry canine, wrangling life on 2nd shift and glitterizing everything as she goes!






The rules for the group board include:
1. Limit of one pin a day.
2. Just like the party anything goes, but clear wonderful pictures with great descriptions are most successful.
3. Please no Spam ( Spammers will be deleted without warning)
4.  If you pin to the Pinterest Board, please link to the Party in Your PJs Party also, the party runs from 7 pm Tuesdays-Midnight Saturday (Central Time)
5.  Finally have fun and share this group board  with blog friends and followers!  The more success the group board is the more success you will see from your pins.

Want to be added to the group board?  Follow our Party in Your PJs board and email Kim at thecookiepuzzle@gmail.com

Features from Last Weeks Party!

Make sure you head over to the other member of Party in Your PJs
 to see their features - we each pick our own!

Were you Featured? Grab a button!


All links are pinned to a Party Board...you can follow the board on Pinterest...feel free to follow the board, there is lots of inspiration to be found there.

Ok...let's party!

Rules
-Link to post, not your home page
-Link to something YOU made, wrote or thought
-No Etsy or Business Pages
-Link Parties, Roundups and Giveaways welcome
- Don't Link and Run! Please visit other links, make friends, learn something new, leave a comment, we all love comments
-If you were featured, grab a"Featured" button, found below.
-Consider adding our Party button to your Party Page or Post.



Monday, July 25, 2016

Using Summer's Bounty: Zucchini Bread

3 comments:


If you’ve ever made the mistake of planting too many zucchini plants, your kitchen may look like mine right about this time of year - overrun with lots and lots of zucchinis that need to be used.



This recipe for Zucchini Bread will not only alleviate some of your stock, but it will (believe it or not!) satisfy even the pickiest of eaters. 

It also freezes well, so you can enjoy a taste of summer later when the days grow cooler!

Zucchini Bread

Makes 2 regular loaves

You Need:

- 3 c all-purpose flour
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp baking soda
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 3 eggs
- 1 c vegetable oil
- 2 ¼ c sugar
- 1 tbsp vanilla extract
- 2 c zucchini, grated
- 1 c walnuts, chopped and/or ½ bag of chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease and flour two 8”x 4” loaf pans.

In a medium bowl, sift together  dry ingredients: flour, salt, baking soda, baking powder, and ground cinnamon.

In a large bowl, beat together eggs, oil, sugar, and vanilla extract.

Add dry ingredients gradually to the egg mixture and stir well.

Add zucchini and walnuts and/or chocolate chips.

Divide batter evenly between the loaf pans.

Bake at 325°F for 40-60 minutes or until toothpick inserted into center comes out clean. Cool for 20 minutes, then remove from pans.

Enjoy! 






Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Party in Your PJs #115

4 comments:
Welcome to Party in Your PJs!

Happy Tuesday!  Welcome to the Party in Your PJs Link Party, where your posts will be seen on four different blogs each week.   In addition to Kim from The Cookie Puzzle, you'll also find Party in Your PJs every Tuesday evening at Grandma IdeasWood of Bell Trees and... here!

You'll still find the Awesome Life Friday link up here at RCHReviews, every Thursday evening at 8pm ET so we hope to see you there as well.


Are you ready to party? I can't wait to see what you've brought to share!



Kim ~ The Cookie Puzzle | Facebook | Pinterest 
Nina ~ Grandma Ideas | Pinterest | Twitter
Lynda ~ Reviews, Chews & How-Tos | Facebook | Pinterest
Heather ~ Woods of Bell Trees | Facebook | Instagram

 Meet the Co-Hosts

Kim @ The Cookie Puzzle 

Kim is a small town girl who love simple things. Simple cookies, simple crafts and simple people. She is a wife, mother to one son and two adorable fur babies. Slightly addicted to reality TV and sitcoms, but she loves curling up with a good book or a good walk while listening to podcasts. You can find her at The Cookie Puzzle, where she shares her love for cookies and crafting. 

Nina @ Grandma Ideas 

How is this: Nina is wildly in love with her grandchildren. She delights in doing activities with them that strengthen their relationship –- playing games, doing crafts, snuggling, reading stories to them, and cooking together. She enjoys reading, technology, and traveling. (Tahiti is her most favorite place on earth!)

Lynda @ Reviews, Chews & How-Tos 

Lynda lives outside DC with her husband Michael and elderly beagle, Sadie. She and her daughter Jackie started RCHReviews as a way to spend time together in spite of living across country, and along the way they've added several friends as regular contributors. Between them all, they bring together many different perspectives and lifestyles with one common philosophy - try new things, have fun, and remember you are awesome!

 Heather @ Wood of Bell Trees

Heather is a wife of a peanut butter fanatic and mom of one silly human and one furry canine, wrangling life on 2nd shift and glitterizing everything as she goes!






The rules for the group board include:
1. Limit of one pin a day.
2. Just like the party anything goes, but clear wonderful pictures with great descriptions are most successful.
3. Please no Spam ( Spammers will be deleted without warning)
4.  If you pin to the Pinterest Board, please link to the Party in Your PJs Party also, the party runs from 7 pm Tuesdays-Midnight Saturday (Central Time)
5.  Finally have fun and share this group board  with blog friends and followers!  The more success the group board is the more success you will see from your pins.

Want to be added to the group board?  Follow our Party in Your PJs board and email Kim at thecookiepuzzle@gmail.com

Features from Last Weeks Party!

Make sure you head over to the other member of Party in Your PJs
 to see their features - we each pick our own!

Were you Featured? Grab a button!


All links are pinned to a Party Board...you can follow the board on Pinterest...feel free to follow the board, there is lots of inspiration to be found there.

Ok...let's party!

Rules
-Link to post, not your home page
-Link to something YOU made, wrote or thought
-No Etsy or Business Pages
-Link Parties, Roundups and Giveaways welcome
- Don't Link and Run! Please visit other links, make friends, learn something new, leave a comment, we all love comments
-If you were featured, grab a"Featured" button, found below.
-Consider adding our Party button to your Party Page or Post.



Review: Illumibowl Motion-Activated Toilet Light

2 comments:


Illumibowl is a clip on motion activated "night light" for your toilet. Initially funded by a Kickstarter campaign, this product was invented to help people with their middle of the night bathroom trips -- no more turning the light on and blinding yourself at midnight. No more trying to go to the bathroom without the lights on, only to bump into the counter and bruise your hip in the process.  In March, 2016, Illumibowl was featured on Sharktank and is now partnered with Kevin O'Leary and available for purchase either on their website or at your local Bed Bath & Beyond.

The Illumibowl night light includes 9 different colors to choose from or you can let it rotate through them all. This product rings in at $19.99 with free US shipping and 100% guaranteed satisfaction.

Now, in theory, this product seems like a great product. For me, not so much!

I have a 5 and a 3 year old who both are potty trained and use the bathroom on a regular basis. Show young children like mine the pretty new lights in the toilet EVERY time they walk into the bathroom and you have a problem!

They want to push the button to switch colors, want to sit there and watch every single color shine through, making their bathroom adventures longer than ever.

As if that didn't drive me crazy enough, the suction cups on the product would not stick, no matter what we did! (Their FAQ has suggestions for dealing with that, but they didn't work for us.)

So when the kids were not trying to get the colors to change, they were trying to "help" by fixing it and resticking it somewhere, not always on the toilet, but now I was having to try to keep them from sticking their hands in the bowl to attach the light!


I eventually took it off the toilet and pointed the sensor towards the toilet so it still turned on whenever you sat down, but we never got the cool effects that the product promises.

I think this product may do a lot better with a hook type element rather than the suction cups. Something that hooks over the bowl itself. I noticed that for the short time it did stick, as soon as my husband lifted the lid, it would flop over leaving him having to move it back. Kind of annoying!

So for the women of the world (who don't lift the seat) , this may be the product for you! Keep away from men and kids, in my opinion!

Finally, after about a week of using, the product just completely died out! Suction Cups didn't work from the beginning and then the lights quit on me.

I switched the batteries a few times and nothing seemed to help. I contacted the company and was assured that customer satisfaction was 100% guaranteed and a new product would be sent out to me.

I got a new product in two weeks, but unfortunately the replacement had the same issues and I ended up throwing it in the garbage one irritated night.

I love that the company is willing to make sure that the customer is completely satisfied, but after receiving a product, then a replacement and it still not working, I am not sold. Had this not been a review in which the product was complementary to me, I would have been asking for a refund rather than a replacement!

If anyone has had success using the Illumibowl, please share your experiences with us in comments!

https://www.illumibowl.com/
https://www.facebook.com/illumibowl/
https://twitter.com/illumibowl
https://www.instagram.com/illumibowl/
https://www.pinterest.com/illumibowl/


Thursday, July 14, 2016

Awesome Life Friday #72

4 comments:
Welcome to Awesome Life Friday!

We're so looking forward to seeing what you've been cooking, creating, growing, decorating, reviewing, giving away, and thinking about this week!

While you're here, leave your posts at the other link up we co-host here - Party in Your PJs!  It starts on Tuesday evenings, and runs through Sunday.  I hope you'll join us there as well!

Here's what some of us have been up to this past week:




We hope you'll check them out if you haven't already!  Don't forget to peek at the sidebar and check out what other giveaways we currently have going.

~~~

And now our favorite part - the FEATURES!  We missed the party last week, so these are from two weeks ago.  If you're one of our featured posts, we'd love it if you'd grab a button, and thanks to all of you who shared with us last week!




How to Have a Leave It to Beaver Summer // 
The (Mis)Adventures of a "Born Again" Farm Girl




The Most Amazing Cleaning Life Hack You've Never Seen Before! 
Green, Non-Toxic Way to Deep Clean Rugs of Toxins //
Devastate Boredom





For the Love of Sterling //
Floyd Family Homestead





Spicy Pickled Dilly Green Beans //
Little Miss Dexterous 





Grain Free Strawberry Dessert Pizza //
Thyme to Embrace Herbs





How to Set a Budget //
Royal Little Lambs




If you are one of our FEATURED bloggers, this button is for you!





Thank you all so much for sharing your awesomeness!


Are you all ready to party?  If you like, we'd love it you'd help spread the word by grabbing our button:





Here we go!


Kid-Approved Quick & Easy Lasagna

14 comments:

So here I am, 36 weeks pregnant, looking for quick and easy ways to feed my family and be able to freeze a little for when our little man arrives. Well, who doesn't love lasagna?

I generally make my lasagna with a bunch of veggies hidden in it like zucchini, broccoli and mushrooms but decided that, since I would be freezing a portion of this, I better omit them this time. I know for a fact that zucchini is mostly water so I can only imagine that defrosting it would make the leftovers more watery than I would like.

Talk about a kid approved meal! My two gobbled this version of lasagna up with NO hesitation!

Kid-Approved Quick & Easy Lasagna

Ingredients:
2 cans Tomato auce- I use Hunts Garlic and Traditional
1 bag shredded Mozzarella Cheese
1 half bag Italian mix shredded Cheese
1 16oz. container Ricotta Cheese
1 Egg
1 Box Lasagna Noodles (Cooked al dente)
Parmesan Cheese to taste
Garlic Salt to taste
Italian Seasonings to taste
1 pound ground Sirloin (or hamburger, whatever you prefer)
Worcestershire Sauce
1 med onion, diced

Prep Time - 30 minutes
Cook Time  - 1 hour 15 minutes. , remove foil, cook an additional 15 minutes @ 375

Start by boiling water and adding in the lasagna noodles. While these are cooking, add your Sirloin (or hamburger meat) to a pan along with diced onions, seasonings to taste and a few dashes of Worcestershire sauce.

(I don't know if it is just me being pregnant or what, but I add Worcestershire to any meat I cook. It is a weakness of mine!)

So once the noodles are cooked to al dente, remove them and add them to a pot of cold water so they don't get sticky!

Once the meat is browned, add in a can of tomato sauce. In a separate bowl, mix together the ricotta, bag of Italian cheese and egg. Set aside.

Here is where the art begins;

In a glass dish,pour half of the second can of sauce to cover the bottom. This will keep the noodles from sticking (helpful hint, I learned the hard way)

Start your layering!! Noodles, Meat sauce, cheese mixture. Repeat.

On the Next layer, after all the items have been layered once, add a handful of Mozzarella Cheese to every other layer. I can usually get 4-5 layers with all the ingredients.

Once I have used up everything and put my last layer of noodles, I add the remainder of the can of sauce to the top, then the remainder of the Mozzarella Cheese.

Cover loosely with tin foil and bake for 1 hour at 375 degrees. At this point you should be able to stick a knife through the noodles. If so, remove the tin foil from the pan and let the cheese brown up for an additional 15 more minutes.

Once removed from the oven, let it cool down for a few minutes (boiling cheese and hungry mama = burnt tongue)

This pairs perfectly against some garlic bread and a nice salad.

My kids ate this up and loved every bite! This size recipe fed my family of 4 (and if we're honest I may be eating more for 2, lol) and had PLENTY to freeze half the pan AND have leftovers for lunch the next day.

If you want to freeze this, make sure that the portion you are freezing has cooled down completely before sticking in the freezer! If it is still hot, it will get frostbite on it. and that is not as tasty the second time around!

Alternatively, you can prepare a pan of this up to the point where you'd cook it, seal it and freeze to be cooked later.

Hope your family enjoys this recipe as much as mine did!!




Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Party in Your PJs #114

2 comments:
Welcome to Party in Your PJs!

Happy Tuesday!  Welcome to the Party in Your PJs Link Party, where your posts will be seen on four different blogs each week.   In addition to Kim from The Cookie Puzzle, you'll also find Party in Your PJs every Tuesday evening at Grandma IdeasWood of Bell Trees and... here!

You'll still find the Awesome Life Friday link up here at RCHReviews, every Thursday evening at 8pm ET so we hope to see you there as well.


Are you ready to party? I can't wait to see what you've brought to share!



Kim ~ The Cookie Puzzle | Facebook | Pinterest 
Nina ~ Grandma Ideas | Pinterest | Twitter
Lynda ~ Reviews, Chews & How-Tos | Facebook | Pinterest
Heather ~ Woods of Bell Trees | Facebook | Instagram

 Meet the Co-Hosts

Kim @ The Cookie Puzzle 

Kim is a small town girl who love simple things. Simple cookies, simple crafts and simple people. She is a wife, mother to one son and two adorable fur babies. Slightly addicted to reality TV and sitcoms, but she loves curling up with a good book or a good walk while listening to podcasts. You can find her at The Cookie Puzzle, where she shares her love for cookies and crafting. 

Nina @ Grandma Ideas 

How is this: Nina is wildly in love with her grandchildren. She delights in doing activities with them that strengthen their relationship –- playing games, doing crafts, snuggling, reading stories to them, and cooking together. She enjoys reading, technology, and traveling. (Tahiti is her most favorite place on earth!)

Lynda @ Reviews, Chews & How-Tos 

Lynda lives outside DC with her husband Michael and elderly beagle, Sadie. She and her daughter Jackie started RCHReviews as a way to spend time together in spite of living across country, and along the way they've added several friends as regular contributors. Between them all, they bring together many different perspectives and lifestyles with one common philosophy - try new things, have fun, and remember you are awesome!

 Heather @ Wood of Bell Trees

Heather is a wife of a peanut butter fanatic and mom of one silly human and one furry canine, wrangling life on 2nd shift and glitterizing everything as she goes!






The rules for the group board include:
1. Limit of one pin a day.
2. Just like the party anything goes, but clear wonderful pictures with great descriptions are most successful.
3. Please no Spam ( Spammers will be deleted without warning)
4.  If you pin to the Pinterest Board, please link to the Party in Your PJs Party also, the party runs from 7 pm Tuesdays-Midnight Saturday (Central Time)
5.  Finally have fun and share this group board  with blog friends and followers!  The more success the group board is the more success you will see from your pins.

Want to be added to the group board?  Follow our Party in Your PJs board and email Kim at thecookiepuzzle@gmail.com

Features from Last Weeks Party!

Make sure you head over to the other member of Party in Your PJs
 to see their features - we each pick our own!

Were you Featured? Grab a button!


All links are pinned to a Party Board...you can follow the board on Pinterest...feel free to follow the board, there is lots of inspiration to be found there.

Ok...let's party!

Rules
-Link to post, not your home page
-Link to something YOU made, wrote or thought
-No Etsy or Business Pages
-Link Parties, Roundups and Giveaways welcome
- Don't Link and Run! Please visit other links, make friends, learn something new, leave a comment, we all love comments
-If you were featured, grab a"Featured" button, found below.
-Consider adding our Party button to your Party Page or Post.



Review/Giveaway: Joanne's Cocoon Bar Soaps

47 comments:

I have hair and skin that dries out significantly, then explodes into an oily mess if I use body products that contain sulfates. Artificial fragrances tend to make me itchy as well, so I try to stick to products that include as little nonsense as possible. Bar soaps usually contain fewer ingredients, and often times fewer ingredients equals less irritation.

People are attracted to liquid body washes because they tend to have more lather (which they associate with “clean”—not necessarily the case) and the scent tends to last longer because the perfumes used have more staying power, but are also more irritating to the skin.

Sodium Lauryl Sulfate (SLS) as well as other sulfates are what are responsible for the lather in your body wash, shampoo, and even toothpaste. Unfortunately for those who are sensitive, they can also be harsh and drying to the skin.

Bar soap is nice in that it doesn’t generally contain SLS or any other sulfates to produce lather. The problem with most bar soaps, however, is the “tightness” feeling you get from the strength of the soap.

I was pleasantly surprised to find that the soap from Joanne’s Cocoon has none of those issues.

I received a generous supply of 14 bars of soap to try out, two of each scent. So for this, I gave some to my mom to try, who does not have explosively sensitive skin, but who is somewhat picky in her scent preferences.




One thing in particular that I noticed about all of the soaps is that they last, without softening into a squishy mass that splats and goes down the drain if you accidentally step on it (oddly specific, yes, but this is a thing that I have experienced).

All of the soaps are organic, made with goat’s milk, natural essential oils and tinctures. Most of them actually contain bits of plant matter in them as well, which I think is extremely cool. I used each with a bath puff and they lathered well without having to go back for more, and they didn’t have that drying, tight feeling that most bar soaps have.

Each bar has it's own personality and purpose.


Espresso Enfold— an exfoliating bar with coffee, vanilla, and cacao: This one smells like creamy coffee and the most like food. I’m not a big fan of dessert-type scents as a personal preference, but would be good for someone who likes that sort of thing.

Orange Cloak—Orange, French red clay, calendula: Fresh orange scent with a slight hint of cloves. Calendula leaves are pressed into the soap.  These ingredients work together to encourage skin elasticity and hydration, making for an excellent anti-aging soap.


Mint Wrap—Spearmint, rosemary, peppermint: In the words of my mom, “this smells like chewing gum”. Astringent, minty and kind of tingly, but not for everyone. Dried mint leaves are pressed into the soap.

Swathe of Herbs –Patchouli, juniper berry, and tobacco tincture: This one probably sounds the weirdest, but is a great combination. I suppose this could be considered the most “rustic” of all of the scents, but all temper each other. Definitely one of my favorites, this bar is excellent for soothing combination to oily skin.


Citrus Case—Lemon, lime, and tangerine: This is mom’s favorite. Light and refreshing, it’s supposed to be the skin-clearing bar. I haven’t used it long enough to determine how well it clears the skin, but it smells great.

Lavendula Cover—Lavender, Benzoin, and bergamot: Mom doesn’t like the scent of lavender as a personal preference, too English-teacher-old-ladyish for her. I like it the best, though, and the bergamot gives it a floral-but-not-too-sweet balance.  This soap is designed to treat dry skin and excema.

Honey, I’m Home—Honey and Oatmeal: This one doesn’t have much of a scent, but was noticeably more moisturizing than the others. Actual oats are pressed into the soap. This would probably be good for someone with skin irritation or dry skin issues.

The scents of each of the bars are great, but don’t have staying power for very long after the shower. Such is the nature of natural scents, however. You get to enjoy them in the bath and then they’re done. If you want something that will stay in your pores for any length of time, you’re going to have to buy a liquid detergent, and your skin doesn't want you to do that.

Each bar of Joanne's Cocoon soap costs $4.75, and is available on either their website or on Etsy. Joanne's also sells 3 two-pack sets of bars that go well together for $9.99:

~ Enrich / Even Tone Set (Lavendula Cover & Honey, I'm Home)
~ Exfoliate / Anti-Aging Set (Espresso Enfold & Orange Cloak)
~ Refresh / Rejuvenate (Mint Wrap & Swathe of Herbs)

Joanne’s Cocoon has generously offered to give away one (1) two-pack of your choice to three lucky readers in the US. Keep reading to see how you can enter to win!


https://www.joannescocoon.com/
https://www.etsy.com/shop/JoannesCocoon/
https://www.facebook.com/JoannesCocoon/
https://www.instagram.com/joannescocoon/





To enter the giveaway, you must leave a comment in this entry as instructed by the Giveaway Tools Entry Form below. This will open up additional optional entries to increase your odds of winning.

This giveaway is open to US RESIDENTS ONLY and will end just before midnight ET on 8/11. 

The winners will be notified by email within 24 hours after the end of the giveaway. In order to claim the giveaway prize, the winner will need to respond within 24 hours of notification, or an alternate winner will be selected.

Once the winners have responded and confirmed, their first names will be posted on our Giveaways  page.

Good luck!