Theresa's Mixed Nuts

Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Wakami - It's More Than A Bracelet #DreamChaser

*Disclosure- I received the mentioned product courtesy of the sponsor for the purpose of this review. All opinions are genuine, based on my experience with the product, and have not been influenced by promotional items. 


Do you know what happens when we support and encourage women? Lives and communities are changed for the better. You all know that this is a mostly food and travel blog, so I don't normally cover fashion related topics (you really don't want fashion advice from someone who has a hard time even finding matching socks to wear every day). But, when I was contacted by wakami asking if I would like to partner on their new #DreamChaser campaign, I simply couldn't refuse. 

Wakami

Wakami's main objective is to provide market access to vulnerable communities of Guatemala as a way to transform cycles of poverty into cycles of prosperity. This is an initiative that I can fully support as I believe that when you provide someone with the right tools to earn their way in this world, they can make a positive change in their lives, with their family, and in their community. 

Wakami provides women in Guatemalan communities with the training and tools they need to create hand-made products that can be sold on the global market. Their products are meant to inspire the people who use them and transform the lives of the ones who produce them. 


Wakami


Wakami

Wakami fashion accessories are sold in more than 20 countries around the world. Each design is carefully created with its own story and in line with the latest fashion trends. What makes wakami more than just a bracelet? 

• It gives support to 530 producers, 96% of which are women
• 20 Rural Businesses Incubated
• 60% of the wakami children have improved their nutritional status
• Children have 75% higher school attendance than the national average 
• 44% of the wakami families have invested in and improved their homes in communities with limited access to electricity, clean water and suitable housing

wakami

I was sent a selection of wakami bracelets, and the first thing I noticed was how well crafted they were. You can see they were made with the utmost care to ensure a quality product. The bracelets can be worn dressed up or down, and you can stack as many or as few as you like to complete your look. Each set came wrapped in its own little canvas bag, which I thought was a classy touch. 


No sooner than I put these on for photos, Allison was already hinting around that she would really like to have them for herself. Guess who ended up with the majority of them? Definitely not me. Maybe I should ask for more with the upcoming holiday? With Mother's Day right around the corner, I think these would make an awesome gift. This is the gift that not only gives to mom, but to other women as well. When you support wakami, you support  positive social impact because Dreams + Opportunity = Change. Stop by the wakami website to see all of the beautiful designs and to learn more. And, if you find something that strikes your fancy, enter code THERESA5 to get 10% off of your order!



Which of the wakami designs do you like best?




 

Tuesday, April 24, 2018

Moms Are Great Giveaway


May is right on our heels and that means so is Mother's Day! My mom is a simple woman and is super hard to buy for, so I need a few ideas other than candles and flowers that would be good for a great mom. Give me your best idea, then enter to win a $15 Amazon gift card to buy your mom (or yourself!) something fun this Mother's Day.

The giveaway is open to all and ends 5/7. Winner will have 24 hours to respond to winning email before a new winner is selected. Please enter on the giveaway widget below. Good luck!



*Images used from Free Pretty Things and Miss Kate's Cuttables

Friday, April 20, 2018

Shake Your Maracas for Mexican Omelets!

*Disclosure- I received the mentioned product courtesy of the sponsor for the purpose of this review. All opinions are genuine, based on my experience with the product, and have not been influenced by promotional items. 


Is it too early to start thinking about Cinco de Mayo? Not if you are in my family! While Jason has an Irish heritage, I'm pretty sure he enjoys Cinco de Mayo much more than St. Patrick's Day. Why? Because you can NEVER go wrong with Mexican food. I think we could eat it every day of the week and never get tired of it. Tacos, burritos, carnitas. What's not to love? We host a gathering every year where we gorge on my sister-in-law's famous fried tacos, my brother-in-law's scrumptious guac, and my niece's strong, but tasty margaritas. It's the one time of the year that I don't even bother counting calories because the food is just so damn good. This year we will be hosting a little later in the day than usual due to scheduling conflicts, so I thought we'd start the day with these Mexican Omelets from Golden Blossom Honey to hold us over until the fiesta begins. 

Mexican Omelet

I admit, I've always been a bit boring when it comes to omelets, just filling it with cheese and calling it done. Adding salsa to the mix? Never. But after studying the recipe for a second, my taste buds thought this could be a real hit for Cinco de Mayo breakfast here. Sauteed onions and peppers and gooey Monterrey Jack cheese? Yes, please! The honey sweetened salsa is an excellent addition to really round out the Mexican flavors in this dish. With the first bite, we couldn't help but exclaim "Delicioso!" 

Ingredients
1 cup salsa
1 teaspoon RAW GOLDEN BLOSSOM HONEY
2 Tablespoons butter
1 small onion, chopped
1 (3 ounce) can chopped chili peppers, drained
6 eggs, beaten
1/4 pound Monterrey jack cheese, grated
salt and pepper to taste

 CLICK HERE FOR FULL RECIPE

Mexican Omelet


You can find this recipe, as well as many more delicious recipes right on the Golden Blossom Honey recipe page! Be sure to follow Golden Blossom Honey on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date on new products and promotions.




If you like this recipe, be sure to come back every Friday, where I feature a new recipe from Golden Blossom Honey!





Are you making anything special to celebrate Cinco de Mayo this year?



Sunday, April 15, 2018

Celebrate Tiny Victories with Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap!




I don't know about you, but I am always on the lookout for products that are going to make my every day life easier. I have enough on my plate to deal with every day, so if I can find something that takes even a little bit of frustration away, I'm all over it. Little device that catches hair from the shower drain... Check! Plastic clips to hold my spices on the inside of the cabinet door so I can find them easier... Check! Books on audio... Double Check! Time is a precious commodity, so I look for ways to cut corners to stretch my free time out just a little further every day. One of my new favorite ways to do that is with New Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap.


You all know that my happy place is in my kitchen. I love food and creating dishes that are not only nourishing, but fun for my family. Because I am big on not wasting food, we use a lot of plastic wrap to keep food fresher longer. I'll be honest. Dealing with plastic wrap is not one of my favorite things to do. I can never find the start of the roll and when I do, getting an even cut on those sharp, jagged metal teeth that are supposed to cut the wrap is pretty much impossible. Plus, raise your hand if you've ever sliced your fingers on those metal teeth (I have, on more than one occasion!) OUCH! Let's not even talk about the roll falling out of the box and hitting the dirty floor. Not cool.

Thankfully, Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap is here to change all of that. From beginning to end of roll use, the product is designed to be frustration-free. It offers these new and innovated features so you can get the job done quickly and without hassle:

• Built-in slide cutter that ensures a clean cut every time




Look at that nice, clean edge!


• Starter edge™ makes it easy to find the beginning of the roll


• Grip Strip to keep the plastic wrap in place and immediately ready for your next use


• Roll is automatically held in place to keep it from jumping out of the box
• Long lasting tight seal keeps food fresh


When they say "frustration-free", they mean it! Finding tiny victories, like using the new Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap, frees up a bit more of my time so I can add a few more victories to life. Like, last week I was finally able to get my basement cleaned. I've been putting that off since the fall! Since my mind was no longer drifting to the mess in my basement, this week I was able to tackle another small victory: making homemade sweet rolls for the first time in my life.

Banana Pecan Sweet Rolls

Guess what? They were a success!


Yield: Serves 4

 

Banana Pecan Sweet Rolls

 Original Recipe Adapted From Taste of Home 

 

INGREDIENTS:

Sweet Rolls

  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 2 packages active dry yeast (1/4 ounce each)
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 3 medium ripe bananas, mashed
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tsp vanilla
Filling
  • 6 tbsp butter, melted
  • 1 cup chopped pecans
  • 1/2 cup sugar
Icing
  • 1 cup powder sugar
  • 1 tbsp orange juice
  • 1 tbsp milk

INSTRUCTIONS:


  1. In a large bowl, combine 2 cups flour, sugar, yeast, and salt. Set aside
  2. In a small sauce pan, heat the butter and milk to 120 degrees F. Pour into the flour mixture and stir until moistened. Add in the bananas, egg, and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Stir in remaining flour until combined. Dough will be slightly sticky.
  3. Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead 5 to 7 minutes, or until dough is smooth and elastic. Place dough into a greased bowl, turning once to grease the top. Cover and let rise in a warm spot until doubled, about 1 hour.
  4. Punch dough down. Turn onto a lightly floured surface, then divide in half. Roll each half into a 16 inch by 6 inch rectangle and brush with the melted butter. Combine the pecans and sugar, then sprinkle over the dough within 1/2 inch of the edge.
  5. Starting with the long side, roll the dough up jelly-roll style. Pinch seam to seal. Cut each roll into 10 slices. Place each slice on a baking sheet, cover and allow to rise in a warm place, about 30 minutes. 
  6. Bake at 400 degrees F for 12 to 15 minutes, or until tops start to turn golden brown. Remove sweet rolls from pan and allow to cool on wire racks. 
  7. Combine icing ingredients. Drizzle over tops of cooled sweet rolls. Serve.
Because this recipe calls for more rolls than the 3 of us can eat in one sitting, I use Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap to wrap up the rolls individual, that way we can grab a roll on our way out the door and have a fresh roll at work or to enjoy during school lunch. I love how this plastic wrap has taken one less frustration from my kitchen routine!



If you want to join the crowd of frustration-free plastic wrap users, be sure to look for New Reynolds KITCHENS® Quick Cut™ Plastic Wrap in most major retailers nationwide.


What's one Tiny Victory you have celebrated recently?



Friday, April 13, 2018

Chicken with Apples & Almonds

*Disclosure- I received the mentioned product courtesy of the sponsor for the purpose of this review. All opinions are genuine, based on my experience with the product, and have not been influenced by promotional items. 


For the first time in like forever, I didn't have to cook one dinner this week. Mariah's still away in college, Allison has been eating dinner at her friend's house, and Jason left for Atlanta on Monday. It's just been little old me home alone all week. While the proper side of me misses my family a bit, the other side has been loving my alone time. Do you guys know how clean the house has stayed this week? I haven't had to empty the dishwasher, clean up spills and crumbs, and only had one load of laundry to run. I had so much free time today, I almost didn't know what to do with myself. But, now Jason is home, Allison is back in her room being a moody teen, and Mariah will be home in 3 weeks so it's back to the normal grind around here. Before Jason left, I made him a healthy home cooked meal of Chicken with Apples & Almonds from Golden Blossom Honey because I knew he probably wouldn't be eating properly on his business trip. I mean, when you get to travel to Atlanta, you take advantage of the amazing restaurants they have there, right? Right! 

Chicken with Apples & Almonds

This dish offers both sweet and savory flavors, and with the added almonds, each bite has a wonderful texture. It is also high in protein, low in fat, so it was a great meal to serve before sending my husband out the door since he stayed full on his flight without feeling bloated or weighed down. Grab the recipe for an easy meal solution, or keep it on hand for when you need something to impress your dinner guests. 

1 1/2 teaspoons paprika
5 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 whole chicken breasts, boned, skinned and halved
1 medium onion, sliced
2 large MacIntosh apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon GOLDEN BLOSSOM HONEY
1/4 cup raisins
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup slivered almonds
3/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt


CLICK HERE FOR FULL RECIPE

Chicken with Apples and Almonds

You can find this recipe, as well as many more delicious recipes right on the Golden Blossom Honey recipe page! Be sure to follow Golden Blossom Honey on Facebook and Twitter to stay up to date on new products and promotions.




If you like this recipe, be sure to come back every Friday, where I feature a new recipe from Golden Blossom Honey!


Do you still cook dinner when it's just for you?


Monday, April 9, 2018

Banana Walnut Baked Oatmeal from Mom's Sugar Solution

*Disclosure- I received the mentioned product courtesy of the sponsor for the purpose of this review. All opinions are genuine, based on my experience with the product, and have not been influenced by promotional items. This post contains Amazon affiliate links.


I'm putting that disclosure up there because someone keeps sending me books and I'm not sure who they are from. I've got about 10 how-to books (all very lovely) sitting here that I don't know what to do with. Unless we've mutually agreed upon a feature, I don't just willy nilly write up reviews because someone chooses to send unsolicited material. So, to the company doing it, please stop sending out random books and contact me first. I'm very picky about what I choose to feature here and you could save us both time and hassle with a simple email inquiry.

With that said, out of all the books that have been anonymously gifted, one stood out because it was a cookbook, which you all know that I have a weakness for. Mom's Sugar Solution: 150 Low-Sugar Recipes for Your Kids' Favorite Foods, Sweet Treats, and More! arrived at my door about a month ago and I have been kind of in awe of the book since first cracking it open. While I normally wouldn't showcase an unsolicited product here, I really do love this cookbook and thought you all would love it too, so I'm going against what I normally do and am sharing it with you all today. 

Mom's Sugar Solution

While I'm not opposed to treating my family to a sugary snack once in a while, I do believe that we should cut down on the refined sugar when possible. So, I sat down and flipped through this cookbook cover to cover in hopes of finding a few tasty recipes that weren't loaded with sugar so I could cheat on the sweets that my family tends to love.

The beginning of the book is a great resource, offering up tips on how to transition your family into a low-sugar diet. It then goes on to offer up 150 recipes starting with breakfast and going all the way through dessert after dinner. At the tail end of the book, there's even a guide for simple meal plans, so if you're looking to cut down on the sugar intake, this handy chart will keep you on track.


Mom's Sugar Solution

Mom's Sugar Solution

I liked the glossy pages, pretty photography, and easy to follow recipes. I've been wanting to try several of the recipes in this book this month, but time has been very limited, so I have only had the chance to test one, and that is the Banana Walnut Baked Oatmeal.

Banana Walnut Baked Oatmeal

Banana Walnut Baked Oatmeal

Imagine a warm banana bread right out of the oven. It smells great and tastes even better. Yeah, that's what this oatmeal reminds me of. Fresh baked banana bread but in oatmeal form. Irresistible, right? I made this for a weekend breakfast and it was devoured in no time, so I'm going to say that the first recipe we've tried from the cookbook was a raging success.

Banana Walnut Baked Oatmea

Banana Walnut Baked Oatmea


Yield: Serves 6
Banana Walnut Baked Oatmeal

Banana Walnut Baked Oatmeal

INGREDIENTS:


  • Cooking Spray
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • ½ cup chopped walnuts, divided
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons pure maple syrup
  • 2 cups skim milk
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
  • 2 tablespoons ground flaxseed
  • 2 medium ripe bananas, cut into ½ inch pieces

INSTRUCTIONS:


  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Grease an 8" baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, mix together oats, ¼ cup of the walnuts, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt until well-mixed.
  3. In a separate large bowl, whisk together syrup, milk, egg, butter, vanilla, and flaxseed.
  4. Place bananas in a single layer in the prepared baking dish, then evenly sprinkle in the oat mixture.
  5. Slowly and evenly drizzle milk mixture on top of oats. If any milk is pooling on top of oats, use a wooden spoon to gently tap it down through the oats without disturbing the banana layer.
  6. Sprinkle remaining walnuts on top.
  7. Bake 35-45 minutes until mostly firm with just a little jiggle in the center. Remove from oven and let cool a few minutes before serving. 
Banana Walnut Baked Oatmeal is an awesome way to start the day. While I made this for a weekend treat, I think it would be wonderful to have on a school morning, if you have the time to prepare it before the kids head out the door. Since oatmeal is filling, it will keep their tummies full all the way until lunchtime.

Be sure to grab a copy of Mom's Sugar Solution to grab all 150 low-sugar recipes. You can find the cookbook on Amazon and through most major book retailers.



What's your favorite fruit to bake into oatmeal?