Author Archive

Amy’s Notebook 03.19.14

Wednesday, March 19th, 2014

DIY-Gold-Foil-Lettering

Source: Nest of Posies

 

Aren’t these diy gold foil lettered flower pots great? I’m thinking of all the fun things I can write on the pots – both for keeping and for gifting!

There are SO many good ideas in this article on 8 ways to teach your kids the value of money!

I’m excited to try putting some of these colorful ideas, resources and tips for paper organization to work!

I love a good gumbo and this seafood gumbo looks fantastic.

15 dinners you can make in 30 minutes? Just the type of resource we need for those busy school-sports-work days!

And take a look at this gluten free Girl Scout Samoa-inspired peanut butter bar – it is truly inspired! Yum.

amys_notebook

I hope you enjoyed this collection of gathered links to DIY crafts, food projects, and thrifty ways to spruce up your home. Nothing brings me more joy then to highlight other fabulous bloggers. Follow me on Pinterest for daily inspiration!

 

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Gluten-Free Snickerdoodle Cake

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

Gluten-Free Snickerdoodle Cake from MomAdvice.com.Semi homemade cakes have become a speciality of mine for birthdays. Today’s gluten-free snickerdoodle cake offered the perfect celebration cake for my husband’s birthday this year and I loved that it tastes just as heavenly as our usual snickerdoodle cake and our chocolate snickerdoodle cake that I had made before going gluten-free.

Before going gluten-free I relied heavily on cake mixes for making all of our cakes (something that I mention as a pantry necessity in my book), and that ease of pre-mixed ingredients is exactly the tradition that I have continued as I have started baking cakes that are gluten-free. As we demonstrated, cooking with cake mixes is easy enough that your child can bake it for you, the cake mix can be transformed into delicious sugar cookies, and you can even put a rainbow in the center, if you want.

Ed Emberley drawing booksEd Emberley drawing booksEd Emberley drawing books

As we have gotten older, we need less and less. Frankly, if we really want something, we usually just go and buy it for ourselves. Special & thoughtful gifts seem harder to come by, but I was determined to make this guy’s day special.

His favorite books as a child were Ed Emberley’s drawing books. While these books have been reissued, my husband more than anything wanted the original books that he had loved as a kid. I found the three of his favorites and wrapped them in ribbon to give him for his birthday. I could not wait to see his face.

Unbeknownst to me,one of the books contained Ed Emberley’s autograph, which my husband said was the best gift he had ever received. What a happy surprise that was.

If your spouse had a series of books or a book that was their childhood favorite, imagine what a joy it is to see that original again.

Gluten-Free Snickerdoodle Cake from MomAdvice.com

To top the night off, we celebrated with a slice of this cake. While I find gluten-free cakes to be a little on the dry side, we have found that a little pudding mix really helps this cake… and a thick layer of homemade cinnamon buttercream doesn’t hurt either.

The cake is laced with cinnamon, as is the frosting, and the base is made from a simply yellow cake mix. Any gluten-free brand should work beautifully in this cake.

Happiest of birthdays to the love of my life. I still shake my head that I have been present for his birthday since he was just sixteen. A million moments shared, and I pray for millions more with my best friend!

Gluten-Free Snickerdoodle Cake
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 8
 
An easy gluten-free cake made from a packaged yellow cake mix. It’s the perfect cake to celebrate with!
Ingredients
  • 1 package (15 ounces) yellow gluten-free cake mix
  • ¼ cup (half of a 3.4 ounce package) vanilla instant pudding
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ¾ cup milk
  • 8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 3 large eggs
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • For frosting: 1 stick butter, softened
  • 3¾ cup confectioners sugar
  • 3-4 Tablespoons milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees and lightly grease two 9-inch round cake pans.
  2. Place the cake mix, pudding mix, cinnamon, milk, melted butter, eggs, and vanilla in an electric mixer and beat until incorporated.
  3. Divide batter evenly between two pans and place in oven side-by-side.
  4. Bake for 18-22 minutes. Allow to cool.
  5. For the icing, beat butter until fluffy. Add all other ingredients.
  6. To assemble cake, place one layer on your cake stand. Spread the top with the cinnamon frosting.
  7. Place the next layer on top and cover the top and sides with frosting.

*this post contains affiliate links.

What is one of your favorite birthday gifts you have ever received?

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Apron Full of Giveaways 03.18.14

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

linen apron

Source: Linen Life Ideas,  $42.82

 

Welcome to our Apron Full of Giveaways! I hope everyone is having a great week this week! As we do each week, here is our round-up of giveaways for our readers. We hope that this is beneficial to you and your family! Please let us know if you guys win anything- I love to hear the success stories!

Below are the contest links-if you are hosting a contest please link it up below. Sorry, we are not giving away the aprons just showcasing them! Please put your site name and then what type of contest you are hosting. For example, “MomAdvice (Kid’s Movies).”

Good luck to each of you!

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It’s The 3 Little Things

Friday, March 14th, 2014

3_little_things

I thought I would start a new feature here called, “It’s The Three Little Things,” that I could share (or you could share!) three things that you are loving this week. Not everything seems to fit in a category anymore so I thought it would be fun a few highlights of things that are making me happy here.

BB Creme Garnier BB Cream

 

I had never heard of BB Creme before, but the last conference I went to CVS Minute Clinic (another thing I absolutely love) had a booth set up and offered to mail me a package of their favorite drugstore items to try. In the bag were two BB Cremes, an invention that I had never heard of. And the rest, as they say, is history. I will never go back to foundation again.

Not to sound too informercially, but this creme has transformed my skin and complexion. It contains a moisturizer, a light sunblock, a foundation, and has brightening agents in it. It’s almost like an airbrush tool for your face.

If your hairdresser messages you AFTER you get home from getting your hair done to ask what you are using on your skin, you know it’s good. It also helps that this saves me a few steps in my morning routine. The best part is, it only costs around $12!

Seamless Perfection Top

Seamless Perfection Top

 

It’s still cold in Indiana, but I am dying to wear some of my Spring clothes (see my tank top post I created in our current Indiana blizzard). I picked up one of these seamless tops and I honestly wear it almost every single day. It’s not bulky under my Spring pieces and it feels like I am wearing a pajama shirt, but looks great with everything. Since I wear it almost daily, it is washed frequently and it looks just like the day I bought it.

I am planning to wear this one a lot with my maxi skirts and under my sleeveless spring dresses until the weather finally warms up around here! ($37.50, but you can use code WEB25 for 25% off your order to make it $30!)

 UGG Boots

UGG Inserts

UGG Boot Inserts

 

I have never owned a pair of UGG boots, but when I found a pair at Goodwill for a mere $4.50, I couldn’t resist bringing them home with me. They had seen better days though and I thought I would look up how to clean them and make them look fresh again. Not only do they sell great cleaning kits (which I used to clean all my boots this Winter), but they have plushy new inserts that you can slip inside your boots and make them feel like brand new again for only $15.

With that little investment, I feel like I got a new pair of fancy boots and I still only paid $20 for them! Such a happy steal this winter. And after getting these, I see what the fuss is all about. My feet are so warm now!

*this post may contain affiliate links- I only recommend what I love though.

What’s making you happy this week?

 

Freebie Friday March 14, 2014

Friday, March 14th, 2014

freebie friday Happy Freebie Friday, everyone! We would like to thank Couponing 101 for assisting us with our freebies each week for loads of deals, savings, and freebies!

This week on MomAdvice we have two special contributor posts, a heartfelt post on cheering for the same team in your marriage from Mary and tips on how to reduce expenses and spending as part of our budgeting 101 series from Kelly. And I’m getting a little out of my comfort zone here on the blog and sharing 5 ways to style a 3.94 tank top (which turned out to be a lot of fun!), as well as a yummy gluten free Pad Thai recipe with shrimp that is WAY better than take-out!

Our weekly notebook is of course filled with inspiring DIY food, decorating and craft ideas (including some yummy-looking homemade caramels!), and we have lots of contests you can enter on our weekly round-up of great giveaways!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Food & Drink

Mars Chocolate Bars

Yogi Tea Sample

Health & Beauty

Emergen-C Sample

Nivea Lotion Sample

Finish Dishwasher Detergent Sample

CK One Mascara at ULTA on your birthday

Entertainment

Trail to the Tree Easter Devotional by Ann Voskamp

Blessings of the Cross Easter Devotional

St. Patrick’s Day Crafts For Kids eBook

Lowe’s Creative Ideas Magazine Subscription

The Outrageous Life eBook

Who Is The Holy Spirit eBook

Teach Kids to Read Color Words Game

Alphabet Lego Cards Printable

Wall-E Printables

Minecraft Story Starters

St. Patrick’s Day Do-A-Dot Printables

This Week’s Freebie EventsMarch 15 - 21

15th - Barnes & Noble: American Girl Event, times vary by location

15th - Lakeshore Learning: Create a Springtime Kite Craft, 11 am - 3 pm

 

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Gluten-Free Pad Thai With Shrimp

Thursday, March 13th, 2014

Gluten-Free Pad Thai With ShrimpWhen I went gluten-free I never realized how exciting it would be to recreate some of my favorite gluten-filled dishes at home. Today I am sharing a Gluten-Free Pad Thai with Shrimp recipe that you can create in your own kitchen and your guests will never know that this delicious dish is gluten-free!

This month Walmart challenged me to create a delicious Lent recipe that you could enjoy with your family. I am no stranger to creating fun dishes for the Lenten season. You can see last year’s round-up of 30 fish and meat-free meal ideas.

For this challenge, I wanted to recreate one of my favorite takeout dishes. Have you ever had Pad Thai? If you haven’t, you are in for a delicious treat. Pad Thai, according to Wikipedia, is a stir-fried rice noodle dish commonly served as a street food and at casual local eateries in Thailand. It is made with soaked dried rice noodles which are stir-fried with eggs and chopped firm tofu, fish sauce,  dried shrimp, garlic or shallots, red chili pepper and palm sugar, and served with lime wedges and often chopped roasted peanuts.

Gluten-Free Pad Thai With Shrimp

While I love the delicateness of the rice noodle, I prefer a more linguine-style noodle in this dish to balance the lightness of the shrimp and because these hold up well to a lot of reheating. Just like my chicken noodle soup I made last month, I am relying on the Tinkyada noodles to create this dish. You are looking for the Fettucini Style Pad Thai Noodles.

Be sure that you are using a gluten-free soy sauce and fish sauce. I rely upon the La Choy Lite Soy Sauce as my soy sauce substitute, but there are reports that some people have a reaction to this. I have not, but be sure to do your own research on what product will fit your gluten-free needs best.

Gluten-Free Pad Thai With Shrimp

The fun part about sharing this with your family and friends is that you can also create a variety of toppings so everyone can personalize their dish. I love roasted chopped peanuts, sriracha, fresh limes, and cilantro on mine.

I hope you love this dish as much as we did and can enjoy this during the Lent season…or any season, really! We polished this dish off in no time at all and I can’t wait to make it again. Thanks to these sturdy noodles, the dish reheats beautifully and can be eaten for your lunches or a late night snack!

Gluten-Free Pad Thai With Shrimp

Gluten-Free Pad Thai With Shrimp
Author: 
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
 
A gluten-free Pad Thai dish that you can enjoy right in the comfort of your own home.
Ingredients
  • 1 package (14 ounces) Tinkyada Brown Rice Pad Thai Noodles
  • ⅓ cup fresh lime juice
  • ⅓ cup water
  • 3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
  • 3 tablespoons gluten-free fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons gluten-free soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon rice vinegar or white vinegar
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 8 ounces mushrooms
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 12 oz frozen peeled deveined medium shrimp, thawed (raw not cooked)
  • Sriracha Sauce (to taste)
  • ¼ cup finely chopped dry-roasted peanuts
  • ¼ cup firmly packed cilantro leaves
  • Lime Wedges
  • Sriracha Sauce
Instructions
  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook the noodles as directed on package. After they are done cooking, drain and rinse with cool water; set aside.
  2. Meanwhile, in small bowl, stir lime juice, ⅓ cup water, the brown sugar, fish sauce, soy sauce, vinegar, and 1 tablespoon of the oil until well mixed; set aside.
  3. In nonstick wok or 12-inch nonstick skillet, heat remaining 2 tablespoons vegetable oil over medium heat. Cook shrimp for approximately three minutes and remove from pan; set aside. Next cook mushrooms and then set aside.
  4. Using the same oil, cook garlic for about 30 seconds, stirring constantly, until starting to brown. Add eggs. Cook about 2 minutes, stirring gently and constantly, until scrambled but still moist.
  5. Stir in noodles and lime juice mixture. Increase heat to high. Cook about 1 minute, tossing constantly with 2 wooden spoons, until sauce begins to thicken. Add remaining ingredients except cilantro. Cook 2 to 3 minutes, tossing with 2 wooden spoons, until noodles are tender.
  6. Place on serving platter. Sprinkle with cilantro. Garnish with additional chopped dry-roasted peanuts, and lime wedges.
 Recipe Adapted from Betty Crocker

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5 Ways to Wear a $3.94 Tank Top

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

5 Ways to Wear a $3.94 Tank Top

Although the snow continues to fall here, I am starting to get the urge to spruce up my wardrobe for Spring. Today I wanted to showcase 5 fun ways to wear a $3.94 tank top with items you probably already have in your closet.

I am partnering with Walmart on today’s project to help spread the word about their $3.94 Faded Glory Ribbed Cotton Tanks that you can find in a variety of colors and prints at their store. Truth be told, I buy a huge stack of these every single year and each year, I think they improve a little bit more!

The one thing that I love about this year’s tank is that it actually covers your bra straps so you don’t have to wear a strapless bra with this one or have to layer anything underneath. It’s an improvement from year’s past where two tanks were necessary for coverage. I think you will be pleased with the cut, length, and fabric weight on these too.

Here are 5 fun ways to wear this year’s tanks!

5 Ways to Wear a $3.94 Tank Top

5 Ways to Wear a $3.94 Tank Top

Novelty prints are still really hot this year so I wanted to pick up a couple of printed tanks to wear with my wardrobe basics. This heart print looks so cute with a boyfriend blazer, jeans, ballet flats, and a pretty necklace.

This would also be cute with a blazer, chambray shirt, or a favorite cardigan for layering until those warmer temperatures come along.

5 Ways to Wear a $3.94 Tank Top

Here is an example of that same novelty print, but dressed up! I grabbed my skinny red patent belt to cinch the waist and then paired it with a cotton skirt and my favorite red wedges. I love looks like this because you look very polished, but it is essentially as comfortable as wearing your pajamas!

5 Ways to Wear a $3.94 Tank Top

In the summer month’s I LIVE in maxi skirts and tank tops.There really is nothing more comfortable.

Here is another $3.94 tank top in a sunshine yellow that I have paired with my favorite maxi skirt and bubble necklace from our awesome site sponsor. When I have a shirt that doesn’t have any pattern to it, I really rely on fun accessories to add details to my neckline. One necklace can change the entire look of a basic tank.

5 Ways to Wear a $3.94 Tank Top

Truth be told, most of my tank tops get devoted towards my workouts at the gym! This tank can be paired with your favorite yoga pants and layered or worn alone with a sports bra for your workouts. Workout gear can be really expensive so I rely on this budget-friendly wardrobe staple for my yoga classes. Sweating ain’t no thang when you only pay $3.94 for a top!

5 Ways to Wear a $3.94 Tank Top

In the summer months, I am usually in my favorite capris and tanks while running around after my kids at the local park. Even this look paired with a chunky necklace, a contrasting patterned bangle, and a pair of wedges can look pulled together for a day running around with the kids.

I hope these ideas inspire you to make these tanks a summer staple in your wardrobe too!

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Amy’s Notebook 03.12.13

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

Salted Honey Caramels

Source: My Humble Kitchen

 

Ooo…soft, chewy and sweetened with natural honey and palm sugar – there’s a lot to love about these salted honey caramels!

What a cute way to use up some fabric scraps and usher in some springtime with a cool spring wreath. And we’re all ready for spring, aren’t we? Please…

Okay, this is just a fabulously creative idea – convert an old sewing table into a drink station.

The humble chicken breast is elevated to a man-pleasing chicken dish with bacon and spinach – yum!

How about getting your vegetables in a cauliflower fritter? Works for me!

Here’s a completely fun home tour for you – my favorite part? The giant “XO” over the bed – love!

amys_notebook

I hope you enjoyed this collection of gathered links to DIY crafts, food projects, and thrifty ways to spruce up your home. Nothing brings me more joy then to highlight other fabulous bloggers. Follow me on Pinterest for daily inspiration!

 

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Apron Full of Giveaways 03.11.14

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

mustache apron

Source: Cucina Bambina,  $38.95

 

Welcome to our Apron Full of Giveaways! I hope everyone is having a great week this week! As we do each week, here is our round-up of giveaways for our readers. We hope that this is beneficial to you and your family! Please let us know if you guys win anything- I love to hear the success stories!

Below are the contest links-if you are hosting a contest please link it up below. Sorry, we are not giving away the aprons just showcasing them! Please put your site name and then what type of contest you are hosting. For example, “MomAdvice (Kid’s Movies).”

Good luck to each of you!

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Freebie Friday March 7, 2014

Friday, March 7th, 2014

freebie friday Happy Freebie Friday, everyone! We would like to thank Couponing 101 for assisting us with our freebies each week for loads of free foods & samples, free downloads, and free events!

This week on MomAdvice you can find three recipes, a classic Shrimp & Grits recipe from our food contributor, Shaina, a recipe for gluten-free pancakes using my favorite Better Batter Flour (plus a coupon code good all month!), and how to make a fun gluten free rainbow bundt cake in honor of St. Patrick’s Day! I’m also sharing about a special activity for kids – how to find and write to pen pals. Our weekly notebook is filled with inspiring DIY food, decorating and craft ideas, and we have lots of contests you can enter on our weekly round-up of great giveaways!

Oh, and don’t forget to check out our March Book Club Pick – A White Wind Blew!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Food & Drink

Quest Protein Bars

Alpina Greek Yogurt Cup

Mars Candy Bars

Health & Beauty

Murad Acne Clearing Solution Sample

Finish Dishwashing Detergent Sample

Entertainment

A Normal Christian Life Audiobook

Spiritual Intervention eBook

Fresh Air eBook

Named By God eBook

Daniel Tiger Printables

Wall-E Printables

Firetruck Tot Pack

St. Patrick’s Day Pack

March Creative Prompts

Scripture Copywork Pages

Goldilocks and The Three Bears Printable

This Week’s Freebie Events: March 8 - 14

8th - Barnes & Noble: American Girl Event, times vary by location

8th - Lakeshore Learning: Create a Beautiful Butterfly Craft, 11 am - 3 pm

8th - Lowe’s: Build a Birdhouse, 10 am

8th - Michael’s: Make a Flower Craft, 12 – 3 pm

 

 

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