Thursday, August 27, 2015

Pile it on Salad

My loves hello hello! Today was beautiful outside I got a lot done and worked on some me time. I invested a few hours in the park just reading and enjoying the breeze. No grandma issues today so when I got home I was hungry and ready to raid my fridge.

Thursday's Treat Pile it on Salad!!!
-yellow tomatoes
-red tomatoes
-sweet peppers
-red onions
-shredded cheese
-balsamic vinegar
-Olive oil
-Smirnoff Ice Peach Bellini (optional)

Serves 2 and leftovers

So the name says it all Pile on
I used 4 Campari red and 4 Campari yellow tomatoes nice thin slices, 3 sweet peppers thin slices as well, less than half an inch of red onion square slices set them aside. I used a large round serving plate and started layering first with my Kale, then my tomatoes, then 2tbps of shredded cheese (which ever you like) I used Italian five cheese, next up the sweet peppers, my onions, 2 more tbsps of cheese and a handful of dried cranberries I love the CVS brand.

I set tray aside and started on the dressing 2 1/2 tbsps of Olive oil, 2 tbsps of Balsamic vinegar, 1 tbsp of sugar and 1 tbsp of Basil. I mixed it all together in a cup and set aside.

I served myself a nice plate, drizzled my tasty dressing pulled out a nice cold Smirnoff Ice Peach Bellini (I needed it after my viejita visit) and sat down to have my dinner. Lil mama is at work so it's just me, my IPad, my emails and some music. Delish!!!
Healthy and fun, less than 30 minutes easy clean up Enjoy.

Always stress free xo.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Mindful moments in our Day

illustration by

My lovelies! How are things going today? Did you get out of bed in a rush? Did you start your day on a sprint? Mind full of things to do and worry of not enough time to do it?
I use to know that feeling until I began to practice Meditation and Yoga. I found myself going a little backwards these past two months dealing with my grandma's issues but the other night I just stopped everything I was doing went into my room, shut off the lights, sat on my floor and took some deep breaths.

illustration by

I've been waking up with several to do lists from calling doctors to following up on medical supplies and to be honest I am tired. By the time I reach my office I feel like I've been up for hours. Recently I realized I can't keep going on like this because I don't know how long this journey with my grandma will be and because she is in her last stage of Alzheimers there is a lot more to come I must be ready for.

I caught an old episode of  Oprah's Super Soul Sunday in which she spoke with a man by the name of Jon Kabat-Zinn. He shared his story and how he implements a mindful morning routine. I found it to be interesting and helpful in my current situation. It helped me to remember my own practice and purpose I have set for myself .
I'm sharing it here with you in hopes that if any of you are feeling as I have been you know that there are options and you aren't alone in having a few crazy filled days.

illustration by

What tools do you use to slow your pace down? How do you cope with those days that to do list seems to never end? Start a conversation.

Always stress free xo.

Monday, August 24, 2015

Turn it Up Tuesday

Party time! We would like to thank everyone that showed us love last week on our big 100. Thanks for the continuous support and shares without you there is no Tuesday fun! Hope you also notice the new look and Giveaway so please join the fun, share your best and lets keep growing and partying xo!
TUT new
Turn It Up Tuesdays is all about being happy, excited, energetic...and having fun! Link up your favorite posts (old or new) and meet some awesome bloggers in return! Link up your funny stories, DIY posts, recipes, mommy moments -- anything at all. We want to laugh, be entertained, be inspired, and have a good time!
Thanks so much to everyone that joins us each week and makes this link party the best that it could be!


Our sponsor for August is The Avarca Store.

We are family run business , where husband and wife are founders at The Avarca Store, brings you handmade eco-friendly artisanal leather sandals made in Menorca (Spain).

The Avarca Store is a curated selection of the best artisan avarcas sandals from Menorca. We are proud to bring to the United States and the rest of the world our legendary avarcas, artisanal leather sandals made in Menorca (Spain).
Are you looking to get your blog or website in front of numerous people per week? Do you enjoy Turn It Up Tuesdays? Interested in having your blog or website featured for an entire month? Then, sponsor Turn It Up Tuesday for a month by clicking here!

Welcome the lovely ladies of Turn It Up Tuesday!

(from the top - left to right)
Natasha from Epic Mommy Adventures | Stacey from This Momma's Ramblings | Cathy from A Peek Into My Paradise | April from April Noelle | Tina from The Happy Creations | Tiffany from MrsTeeLoveLifeLaughter | Cindy from Mom Maven | Melissa from The Coupon Chronicles | Kelly from Making-More | Silvie from My Silly Little Gang | Mari from Living in Mommywood | Tenns from Bliss & Faith | Kimberly from Being a Wordsmith | Nancy from Afro-Chic Mompreneur | Kimberly from Keystrokes by Kimberly | Kelly from Mum-bo-Jumbo | Elaine from Ramblings of a Bad Domestic Goddess | Zografia from Bisozozo | Ginger from Does Your Sister Have Normal Hair | Free from Couponin Diva | Kori from Just Another Mom | Minnie from The Country Cooking Queen's Weight loss and healthy eathing blog | Amy from Confessions of a Ninja Mom | Bev from Eclectic Red Barn | Dawn from Pretty Shabby UK | Anuja from All I Do

And welcome our awesome guest hosts for August!

TUT Aug 2015 (3)
(from the top - left to right)
Dina from Savvy in the Kitchen | Jennifer from MomTricks | Leanne from The Transplanted Southerner | Jennice from Mommy in Color | Tina from Kidz Activities
- not pictured -
Miranda from A July Dreamer | Sarah from Living Intentionally Simple | Vicki from Five Spot Green Living

Interested in being a guest host for the month or becoming a permanent co-host?

Complete the form here! Monthly guest hosts will be chosen on a first come first-serve basis.

Here are the Featured posts from last week!

Silvie chose Bacon Parmesan Soft Pretzels from That Recipe. "I chose this recipe because it sounds absolutely delicious! My boys love pretzels and this would be a great treat for them."


Silvie chose Cucumber Mint Martini from Lipgloss and Crayons. "I love martinis and this one sounds refreshing. I can't wait to try it."


Silvie chose Bag “Seatbelt” Clips for the Car from Little Miss Dexterous. "Where has this idea been?! I am always having to pick up the things that fall out of my bag in the car. These bag clips look easy to make and very useful!"
Natasha also chose this post. "I just love this simple idea! I am always picking up items that I find on the passenger side floor after my purse or bags falls onto the floor. This would be a such a great way to prevent it from happening. Great idea!"


Cathy chose Peanut Butter Cup Dump Cake from Typically Simple. "OMG! This looks delicious! What isn’t there to love about a peanut butter and chocolate dessert that is quick and easy?"
Stacey also chose this post. "This looks absolutely divine and so easy! It would be a great starter recipe for any beginning baker or homeschool lesson! Thank you for sharing!"


Cathy chose Salted Caramel Sour Cream Banana Muffins from Treat Yourself Sweeter. "My hubby is going to love these!"

Pumpkins 1

Dawn chose Fun Fall Pumpkins and a Sweet Black Cat from Crafty in Crosby. "I love Halloween, and these easy to make decorations are too sweet."


Dawn chose DIY Wooden Sign from Lou Lou Girls. "I love this sign and the dinosaur room looks amazing."


Dawn chose How To Use Lavender To Make Your Life Better from our very own Elaine from Ramblings of a (Bad) Domestic Goddess. "I love all things Lavender... This is an amazing all round plant."


Kelly chose Car Crafts for Preschoolers from this month's guest host, Tina from Kidz Activities. "My son is obsessed with cars and these ideas are so easy and simple! I can't wait to make some of these projects with my son."


Kelly chose Six on Saturday: New Uses for Dishwashing Soap from Inspiration for Moms. "These tips for using dishwashing soap are great! Who knew it can be used to remove grease from clothing? I'll definitely be using these tips!"


Kelly chose The Perfect Pie Crust from Budget Girl. "Homemade pie crust has long been a nemesis of mine! These tips – especially about the different melting temperatures – are bound to make my next pie crust perfect!"


Amy chose 10 Things You Do Differently When You Have a Second Child from Fun Money Mom. "This post sums up perfectly how differently things are when you become a second time mom. This is a must read for all parents that have more than one child. I promise, it will have you LOL the entire post."


Amy chose DIY Dinosaur Dig Busy Board from Lou Lou Girls. "I love this creative DIY dinosaur dig board. My son is super in to dinosaurs and excavation kits. This would make a fun and less messy activity for him still involving a lot of the same things he loves about dinosaur exploration. Very inspiring!”


Bev chose Snickers Stuffed Peanut Butter Cookies from The Gold Lining Girl. "So wonderful to be able to give a party for her Grandma's 90th birthday. These cookies are so tempting, I want some now."

painted bucket title photo

Bev chose Painted Wood Tub Planter and Watering Can with Free Printables from Redo It Yourself Inspirations. "Love the green and blue colors together on these planter and watering can. What a great way to give them new life."
Tina also chose this post. "I love these creations.What a beautiful planter and watering can. Thanks for sharing."


Mari chose Chalkboard Paint Ideas for the Home from Marty's Musings. "I loved Marty's Chalk share because it's so creative and you can have tons of fun. I have a pack of colored chalk always handy at home lol"


Mari chose Making Friends: Qualities We Want in Our Friends from Tiny Tots Adventures. "This post I enjoyed because friendships are so important for well rounded development and even as we get older it's great to keep these things in mind so that we always have good, uplifting people around us."


Cindy chose Waffle Omelet Recipe from Growing Up Gabel. "This is a creative way to get more use out of your waffle maker. I need to dig mine out of storage and start making this protein packed breakfast!"

Cindy chose 101 Handmade Days: DIY Notebook Cover from Busy Being Jennifer. "I literally live by my composition notebooks. I use them to manage all 5 of my businesses and my church stuff. I would love to have color-coded, pretty removeable covers to dress up my boring notebooks. I love this so much I shared it on Facebook and asked my sewing friends/family to make them for me...maybe mom will whip some up for me for Christmas!"


Leanne chose Updated Fall Mason Jar Vases from Anything & Everything DIY Blog. "I love these simple but beautiful deocrations for fall. The step by step tips were great!"


Leanne chose Lemon Cheesecake Zucchini Muffins from Best of Long Island and Central Florida. "Healthy AND Yummy! I've added these to my recipe stash - I can see these being snapped up by my family!"


Leanne chose Constitution Day Mini Puzzle Unit {freebie} from In All You Do. "Learning about the Constitution is so important, and these fun printables will make it easy to add in to our homeschool."
Natasha also chose this post. "This is a great freebie! I am trying to work with my son to take advantage of some learning at home to better prepare him for kindergarten. These printables are definitely simple, and will be great to use! Thanks for sharing!"

telling kids you are stressed

Stacey chose Telling Your Kids You Are Stressed Can Be A Good Thing! from our guest host this month, Leanne from The Transplanted Southerner. "Great post! My kids have definitely seen a meltdown or two, and they have been able to see the resolution of things working themselves out. It also allows them to see real life situations that are often a part of life. Thank you so much for sharing!"


Stacey chose Halloween Series #4 - front windows from MamaMIA. "I love Halloween, it is our family's favorite holiday! I love the look of this decor, especially the tissue paper, which gives it such a wonderful glow! Thank you for sharing!"


Tina chose Coastal Decor DIY Hurricane Candle Holder from Cupcakes and Crinoline. "A simple and beautiful candle holder.Easy to make and elegant. Thanks for shadings."


The post with the most views is Why Are We Spending Money On Something We Can Get For Free? from My Stay at Home Adventures.
Stop by and show some love to our featured bloggers this week! I'm sure they'd all appreciate it!
If you were featured above, feel free to share the badge below with pride on your blog or website!

Epic Mommy Adventures

And the Best of the Best goes to...


Peanut Butter Cup Dump Cake from Typically Simple


Lemon Cheesecake Zucchini Muffins from Best of Long Island and Central Florida
Show some love to our Best of the Best bloggers this week!!!!
Best of the Best Bloggers - make sure to showcase the button below on your blog!

Epic Mommy Adventures
Our Turn It Up Tuesday 100th post Giveaway continues this week! Be sure to enter to win!

Turn It Up Tuesday 100th post!
a Rafflecopter giveaway
So now that you've seen our changes for our 100th post, met our Sponsor for the month, our hosts and guest hosts, our Featured, the Best of the Best, and entered to win the $100 Paypal cash giveaway,

let's get started!

- Show some love to your hosts and co-hosts simply by following them on social media and leaving a comment so they can follow you back. - Link up as many posts as you'd like! The more, the merrier! - Check out some of the other posts and make some new friends! - Grab the button below and showcase on your sidebar! Invite your fellow bloggers to join the fun!

Epic Mommy Adventures

Link up your posts, make some friends, and earn the chance to be featured or become the Best of the Best on Turn It Up Tuesday! We will feature the favorite posts each week! **Disclaimer: Adding your link to this link party gives permission to Epic Mommy Adventures, along with co-hosts, guest hosts, and participants of Turn It Up Tuesday, to share your posts and pictures via social media and as features, roundups, etc. with an explicit link back to the original source.**

Interested in reading all of our favorite posts on Turn It Up Tuesdays - past or present? Or do want to know if your post was featured before we go live next week? Follow Natasha Peter's board Featured on Turn It Up Tuesdays! on Pinterest.

Sunday, August 23, 2015

Does hearing "I'm a Package Deal" cause automatic Warning signs?

illustration by

Happy Sunday I got up pretty early today I might add even surprised myself. I invested some time with my plants then revamped my bedroom closets and finished with sitting down to have some breakfast while I looked through some drafts and decided to go with this one today. Why I chose this topic is interesting because it actually came up in a conversation I had last night over dinner with a friend. I've had my perspectives for a while but listing to someone else who is dealing with dating while parenting lit the match I needed to share my thoughts. I am off to enjoy the rest of my sunny day happy read .

What's the right way or wrong way to handle ABC, seems to always be the focus on social media. Everyone has an opinion and not just an opinion but the "right" to post it and claim it as "truth" as an expert opinion. But who better to decide what is best for you or what works for you than...You?
As I mature I grow less and less comfortable with labels. I find them stifling to growth and development and I find they cause more separation than unity. I will admit that I too have been guilty of falling for that putting people under a certain label myself. Luckily I have a wonderful daughter who is teaching me better.

Because I have her and I am no longer with her father I happen to fall under the label of being a "single mom" and a "package deal". The package deal I have no issue with but the single mom thing pisses me off. You never hear "married mom" so why single me ( no pun intended) out? Why should I  conform to a label you chose for me and why are women ok with that? I am a woman and I am a mom, who happens to be currently single period. No I am not a "single mom" that is not WHO I am that is just a current circumstance. If I allow you to call me that or if I address myself as such I am boxing myself in to only an x amount of possibilities and you are not seeing me for me and all I have to offer.

illustration by

Oh poor me I'm a single mom, what? Really? Why would you burden yourself with someone else's perception of who you are? Ok I get that being single and being a parent at times has its challenges but that is not going to define who I am. We all have challenges and being a women a good women is challenge enough. Which brings me to being a "package deal"

For weeks now I've been hearing and seeing stories about singer Ciara and her new boyfriend football player Russell Wilson. Her x and baby's father is having issues with this man having too much interaction with his child. Hugging or pushing the stroller, diaper changes, holding his hand etc etc. Really? (links for background info)
You have an issue with someone treating your child with love and kindness? Your concerned and everyone else is concerned with how fast this guy is in this little boys life? His mother isn't capable of making that decision?

Here's my perspective...there is a difference between someone you are just having a good time with and someone who you see a possible future with. We sometimes get hung up on time tables but reality is that sometimes strong connections happen quickly and there is no right or wrong. Even more so this is still a little baby we are talking about, not a toddler or preteen.

As a woman and as I mom who has been single on and off since my daughter was about 12 years old my set meeting time was and has been about 3 months. That number works for me. It's long enough for me to have built some trust and comfort as well as feel easy having you in my personal space which includes my daughter. For me shorter than that is still not comfortable enough.

Dating and entering a relationship when you have children shouldn't be hard. It shouldn't be something you think about the so called right time to mention. I don't mean hi I'm so and so and I have 3 kids but I do mean a natural flow of conversation when you meet. It allows that person the choice to move forward or walk away. Then if they do decide to move forward you begin to set the stage for a comfortable meet. If at any moment you are feeling pressure for whatever reason then that is not the place for you. A "package deal" shouldn't carry a sting or a stigma it is just another circumstance that has come someones way.

illustration by

After my daughter's father and I split up I had many conversations with my lil mama about how eventually both her father and I would meet other people and start new relationships. How it didn't mean that we didn't have love for each other it just meant we had a different type of love now that we were no longer a couple. That we both were good people and deserved to find other people to share our lives with and possibly build a new family. That it would only mean her family would get bigger and be different but that it would be a family non the less.

As women with children we must venture into new relationships with certain set guidelines. One size doesn't fit all so we really can't try to copy everyone we see. What we can do is evaluate ourselves and what we are looking for then set the rules from there.
-do we have a limit on how many kids we ourselves are willing to work with?
-how does he express himself regarding children?
-is he close to his own kids, how does he speak about the x?
-when you mention this person how do your kids react?
-is he mindful of your responsibilities as a mother?
-is he demonstrating interest in connecting with your child?
-does he ask about your children voluntarily or is subject only bought up when you say something?

We as moms pretty much have an idea about people's feelings towards our children. I feel confident that most of the time we know when to keep talking or when to keep walking. Getting back to Ciara, from what I see I think for now the direction they are going seems positive and if he or any man period shows interest and love for another man's child I say let's give them a chance.

It bought joy to my heart and still brings a smile to my face to recall all the times I witnessed my x boyfriend show love and affection to my daughter. There is love out there for all of us we just can't limit ourselves to labels and being part of a "package deal" can actually just be an added bonus! Don't let it stop you.

Do you think labels on people serve a purpose? Would meeting someone in a "package deal" be an automatic turnoff? What would be some of your guidelines and rules? Share your point of view.

Always stress free xo.