OMG. I just found my new favorite restaurant. Angelina’s Pizzeria recently opened in Irvine (in the new Whole Foods center over by the Irvine Spectrum) and I am welcoming it with open arms. I was invited to come try their new brunch menu and from the moment I walked in, I knew that this would be a game changer for Irvine and the surrounding area. Everything about it was fresh and cool which isn’t usually what you’d expect from a restaurant found in Irvine. While we have lots of decent dining options, this one is a stand out and I think everyone needs to run down and check it out.
This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #IDSimplyPure #CollectiveBiasI am SO excited to go on vacation this year! Last year’s left a little to be desired. We got in a car accident 2 hours in to our 6 hour drive (we were ok!) and ended up arriving a day later than we should have dealing with that. Then we left a day earlier than we were supposed to, to handle car stuff. PLUS my allergies were through the roof crazy and I was pretty miserable. We know this year is going to be so much better. We meet in a place up in the mountains that I went every summer as a girl (and where my dad went as a boy!) and spend a week with my mom, dad and my sister’s family. It’s awesome. One of my favorite parts of last year was my morning coffee. No, it wasn’t fishing like you may have thought (ha!). This year I decided to put a little more thought in to starting off the day off right by creating a DIY coffee station that I will brining with me. I tried to quit coffee a year ago. I was worried about the calories it was adding to my day. I started the process of weaning. It was rough, yo. I totally get why babies cry when they are weaned. Then I realized that I really enjoy coffee and the tiny bit of time it gives me in the morning to just relax and ease in to the day. In the process of trying to stop drinking coffee, I taught myself how to drink it black since I still wasn’t keen on putting the chemicals found in most coffee creamers in my system. I don’t love sweet beverages so drinking it this way was fine. But when I came across these International Delight Simply Pure Coffee Creamers at Walmart, I knew I had to try them. They include only 5 simple ingredients including real milk, cream and sugar. I use it my coffee daily. And because it comes in 3 yummy flavors (Vanilla, Hazelnut and Caramel) I know that the rest of my family will love these too.
On vacation we usually have an idea of what we are doing for the day but things are really relaxed. I know that on a few days my dad and husband will want to get out early to go fishing so our DIY coffee station has travel cups and lids. My mom brings most of the food but I usually bring some of my own coffee since we have different preferences. And I’ll put it all in a cute little basket. The basket and supplies won’t take up much room and will be easy to move it between cabins depending on who is hosting coffee for the morning. Along with the International Delight Simply Pure Coffee Creamer I’ll include raw sugar (for my dad, he’s not a creamer man) and ground cinnamon for sprinkling. I’ll also include some stir sticks and a pretty little napkin to create a super simple but delicious DIY coffee station for our vacation. That totally rhymes. You could also add things to make tea and hot cocoa, to please all the members and kids in the family.I know that I can make the basket fit but filling it with socks, hats, and whatever else is small and squishable. To pack the rest of the coffee goods, I’ll use a plastic container. I usually have a plastic tub filled with food that this will fit perfectly in and I’ll have one bag of refrigerated items where the creamers will go. There are grocery stores closer to where our cabins are but I can’t chance that they won’t have my favorite creamer.I love that this creamer gives my coffee tons of flavor without being overly sweet. I thought I loved coffee before but this creamer makes it even better. I can almost smell the fresh mountain air as I enjoy my cup of coffee in the morning. While I don’t have a lot of downtime at home, I really try to make the most of vacation (especially since wifi is terrible). Getting to read a magazine with my coffee is like a dream come true! And I can’t wait!
For your convenience…These delicious International Delight Simply Pure Coffee Creamers can be found in the Dairy section of your local Walmart store. You can see even more creative ways that people are including their creamers in their daily lives by checking out this #IDSimplyPure inspiration.
What would you include in your DIY coffee station for vacation?
This post was sponsored by ALDI as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central.
I got super lucky this past school year with my boys making their own lunches. Sure I would help occasionally with making a sandwich or packing up leftovers from dinner. But for the most part, they were on their own. It made me so very happy. I never knew I could hate making lunch so much. But I totally did. Now that it is summer, I imagine that I’ll be playing a bigger part in feeding them their midday meal again. Lucky for me, I found tons of great summer lunch ideas at my local ALDI store that will keep it easy for me.
This post was sponsored by a2 Milk® as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central. I received complimentary products to facilitate my review.I can’t quit milk and cookies. No matter how hard I try! There is something so relaxing about dipping a cookie in milk that makes all things right with the world. And I won’t give it up even though milk and my body are not BFFs. All signs point to me not drinking milk but the heart wants what it wants and I’m so glad I found a special milk that allows me to eat all the milk and cookies that I want! I can give up a glass with breakfast. I can find recipes that don’t require it. But give me my milk and cookies!
Over the years our family has had a love hate relationship with milk. My oldest son finally grew out of a milk allergy but for years we had to read labels to make sure that he wasn’t be exposed to the allergen in anything he ate. For me, I found that milk made me feel bad. Real bad. ‘Post Dairy Digestion Discomfort’ is a thing. And I have it. This means that drinking milk and a lot of times, eating ice cream, leaves me feeling awful. We tried all different kinds of milk alternatives (soy, almond, coconut) to find something milk-like that we could drink. Neither of us liked any of those so for years we did without, looking for our calcium through supplements and veggies. But all milk is not the same! a2 Milk® is real, farm fresh milk! The a1 protein is the reason milk can cause stomach problems and it is currently in all conventional milk and organic milks on the market in the U.S. Except a2 Milk® which comes from specially selected a2 cows. This is natural, not chemically created or modified. Which means I now have a milk option to dip my cookies in!While I love to create recipes and try new flavor combinations, my kids are very tame. My oldest doesn’t even like chocolate chip cookies! I’m thinking he may have been switched at birth since I have a wicked sweet tooth and he doesn’t like America’s favorite cookie. But there is one type of cookie they love. Snickerdoodles. My guess is they love the cinnamon and sugar all over the outside of it. But I make a small change to amp up the flavor. And they don’t seem to notice so now we all enjoy snickerdoodles. While my recipe for snickerdoodles is basic, I add a TBSP of orange zest to the batter before rolling in the cinnamon and sugar and baking. YOU GUYS! This gives it such amazing flavor! You can’t really tell that it is orange, but it brightens the flavor and goes so well with the sweetness. Shhhhhhh. Don’t tell my kids. They would frown on this modification. They like to keep things really plain. The other trick is that I use melted butter, which although I’m not a baker or scientist, I think it makes them a little chewier than normal. I love a chewy cookie! The a2 Milk® Company™ has partnered with some U.S. family dairy farms to expand the specially selected a2 herd of cows, who naturally produce milk free from the nasty a1 protein. Which means I can now have milk and cookies, again, and not feel awful after it! Huzzah! An independent study showed that 1 in 4 Americans have discomfort after drinking milk but only about 6% were clinically diagnosed with lactose intolerance. This means that there are many readers who struggle with drinking milk and are missing out on a lot of milk and cookie moments. But not any more! Milk and cookie moments are so special to share with the kids. They grow so fast and I know these moments are numbered. In fact the day I shared these snickerdoodles with my little one, my older kid was off at a drop off birthday party. My mama heart needed all those cookies.I ate (more than my fair share of) cookies, then went on about my day, with no stomach issues whatsoever. It was awesome. a2 Milk® was super easy for me to find at my local grocery store. Check their store locator to find it in your area. While it sits close to the nut and soy milks, it has much better nutritional value. Plus it tastes delicious with snickerdoodles.
- 1/2 cup butter (1 stick), melted
- 1/2 cup white sugar
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar
- 1 TBSP orange zest
- For the outside coating:
- 2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- In a large bowl combine the flour, white sugar, brown sugar, salt, baking soda, and cream of tartar. Add the egg, vanilla, melted butter and orange zest.
- Mix well.
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
- The dough will be really soft. You can chill for a minute if you need to but I don't because I'm impatient...
- In a small bowl, mix the cinnamon and sugar.
- Using your hands, grab small bits of dough and roll them in to balls.
- Roll the dough ball in the cinnamon and sugar mixture to coat.
- Place the cookies about 2 inches apart on an ungreased cookie sheet.
- Bake the cookies for 12 to 14 minutes watching to make sure they don't overcook.
- The cookies continue to cook a smidge once removed from the oven.
I had intended to take the rest of these cookies to a family birthday party…but we ate them all. SO GOOD! They were perfect and delicious, especially when dipped in a2 Milk®! Have you tried it yet? Milk and cookies are back, baby! I can’t wait to share batch after batch with my kids this summer (although if I’m honest, I will miss the excuse to have to go lay down an catch up on my reality television…)
My sweet tooth gets me in trouble. I can’t say no to most sweet treats that end up in my path. If it’s a new dessert idea, I have to try it because I need to stay in the know. If it’s a classic then I need to try it to see how it stacks up to others I’ve had. It’s really not good for my waistline. But you know what is good for me? Reading dessert cookbooks. I don’t gain any weight that way. And because I possess little to no baking skills, I don’t have to worry about making these things at home. But that doesn’t stop me from devouring the pages of a beautiful book. If you haven’t checked out the cookbook, Eat More Dessert from Jenny Cookies, you have to! It’s SO well done. And not only are there super yummy sounding recipes, there is also tons of fantastic party inspiration. You’re really going to love this book!
This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GIVEEXTRAGETEXTRA #Walgreens #CollectiveBiasYou know how it goes. Sometimes it’s easier to do the work yourself than to train your kids how to do it correctly. But I recently realized that my kids are capable of so much more than I gave them credit for. When I was down and out with the stomach flu a few months ago, my oldest floored me by putting away all the clean dishes from the dishwasher. Without being asked. Or bribed. It was HUGE for me. He told me he knew it would help me out and a light bulb went off in my head. One of the reasons I had resisted putting together a chore system for them was because I didn’t want it to be about how much they could earn. I wanted it to be about how their actions could help another family member. We came up with an easy plan where they are incentivized to help out around the house, but the focus is on helping others. I created a chore list to help prompt their actions. I really love how it’s working!