Cottonelle Clean Crew Sample and Share

Cottonelle Samples

Cottonelle Clean Crew Sample and Share

I was extremely excited to get these samples in the mail! I am a regular user of Cottonelle (it’s the best!) so I was really excited to try their new upright dispenser for the flushable wipes. My sample kit included a Cottonelle Clean Care 4 Pack, a Cottonelle Fresh Care Flushable Cleansing Cloths Dispenser, 3 Cottonelle Fresh Care Flushable Cleansing Cloths Portable Soft Pack, and 3 $1.00 Off Coupons For Wipes Refill So let’s talk bums

I gave away two of the portable packs to my peeps…they absolutely loved them! (of course!) And I gave away all the coupons as I bought a bulk pack of refill wipes a couples of months back during a sale and will probably have refills until the end of time.

I set up my new upright flushable wipes dispenser in the normal area I keep my other dispenser, on the back of the toilet. I will always love these wipes, but after a couple of weeks of using this new dispenser, I think I might actually go back to my old one. The new one, while pretty and more appealing, tends to be pulled and fall over easier. I think it might be because of the rubber that holds the moisture in the dispenser. If it had a wider base, or even more weight in the bottom, it would probably work much better and wouldn’t be pulled off the back of the toilet at nearly every use.

As far as the portable travel packs go, my friends and I came to the same conclusion. We’d love if Cottonelle could come up with a way to make the packs smaller in size. That would make them less conspicuous, and while I don’t really care about people seeing them in my purse, most other people aren’t as willing to talk bums as openly as I am.

Cottonelle and the Kleenex brand have been expanding their marketing efforts quite significantly as of late. Other interesting aspects in their social media efforts is the use of the new feature #AmazonCart. This program through Twitter allows a customer to respond to a tweet from a brand and have a product automatically added to their shopping cart on Amazon. It’s pretty cool, although I know many people will have issues with the privacy aspect of the feature. Check it out sometime.

Anyway, in conclusion, I must impress on you, if you haven’t made the switch to Cottonelle, you really should think about it. It is significantly more expensive than other leading toilet paper brands, but so worth it in the rear-end. : )

All Things Food.

All Things Food.

I’ve decided, moving forward, I plan to mainly dedicate this site to all things food. If you know me, you know food makes my heart beat. So you can look forward to more great recipes, more reviews of food and different restaurants, because I love those too, and also more rants and opinionated blog posts about the way I do food things.

I’ve revamped the site to spotlight my food posts and recipes, and will no longer showcase my ramblings about life.

I’m still going to keep my gallery up with photos and what not, but you’ll be seeing a lot more food pics now! I hope I can shed light on some cooking techniques to make life in the kitchen much easier and more irresistible, and

I’m also excited to say that I’m kicking off this navigation to all things food with a spotlight at The Besty, the newest place to find the best local restaurants in your town and all over the world!

I’m excited to spend more time in the kitchen and to able able to share more and more about food with you all. I truly hope you enjoy reading my stuff!

Favorite Crockpot Little Smokies

Crockpot Little Smokies

I love this recipe for crockpot little smokies! It makes more than enough for a 20-50 person party so if you’re not expecting that many people, scale it down a bit!

Ingredients
4 lbs cocktail little smokies (I love Hilshire Farm)
1 32 oz bottle of grape jelly (yummmmmmmy!)
2 Bottles of Chili Sauce (Not hotdog chili sauce, you’ll find this in the aisle with the ketchup)
Ketchup, Onion Powder, Mustard Powder and Garlic Powder, to taste.

Recipe
Mix jelly, chili sauce, ketchup and spices together in your crockpot until smooth. Add your little smokies and set the crockpot on low. Since there is such a large portion, it will take longer than you’d expect to heat up. It’s OK to turn it on high for a few, but just make sure to not let it boil. The sugar in the jelly and ketchup can get really sticky and burned, which is something you definitely don’t want to deal with scraping off the crockpot later.

If you’d like to add a twist to this traditional recipe, serve it up with some super yummy Mac & Cheese! Scoop a ladle full into your bowl, then add 5-10 crockpot little smokies on top! Kids and adults love this version!

Another great meat to use in this sauce is homemade meatballs!

Homemade Meatballs

Ingredients
2 lbs Hamburger
1 lb Hot Sausage
2 Small Onions
1/2 cup Milk
3 Slices of Loaf Bread
Salt and Pepper, to taste

Recipe
Turn oven on and set to 400 degrees. Blend onions, milk and loaf bread until smooth. Mix sausage and hamburger together. Add blended mixture to meat mixture. Roll into balls 1-2 inches in diameter. Place onto baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes or until cooked all the way through. Then you can add to the crockpot sauce mixture shown above.

Enjoy!

Pimento Cheese and Bacon Sandwich

Pimento Cheese and Bacon Sandwich

I had a preggo craving the other day and it turned out to be pretty fantastic so I’m sharing the recipe for my pimento cheese and bacon sandwich with you! Here’s what you need:

Homemade Pimento Cheese, see my recipe here – you can also use Palmetto Cheese, which is a delightfully spicy version of Pimento cheese.
4-5 slices of bacon – as always, if you want to do it right, use Applewood smoked!
2 slices Italian Bread – or your favorite bread
Butter (optional)
Mayo, Salt, and Pepper, to taste.

Sometimes I feel like making bacon a little healthier by reducing the grease it cook in and using a special bacon tray in the microwave. I particular like to cook bacon this way when using on a sandwich because I hate it when grease drips all over the place. When I cook my bacon in the microwave, I leave it in for about a minute per slice, depending on the thickness, of course. This normally creates the perfect combination of crisp and tenderness that everyone will love.

Toast your bread using the butter and a toaster or put it in the oven. I think the butter gives it a little more flavor, but again, it’s totally optional.

After you’ve toasted your bread and cooked your bacon, you’ll want to add a bit of mayo to the toast. Then add as much or as little of your pimento cheese as you want. Season with salt and pepper, then add your bacon strips to finish this delightful sandwich.

To add some other flavors to you pimento cheese and bacon sandwich, try adding one or more of these:

-1 or 2 slices of fresh cut red bell pepper
-tomato slices
-sauteed garlic or onions

There’s tons of room for expansion on this recipe. You can make it your own, or stick with my original. Either way, it’s going to hit the spot!

Ahhhmazing Meatloaf Recipe!

Err. Mah. Gerd. This meatloaf recipe. I made it the other day and I’ve been thinking about it ever since. Most people say the best part is the bacon weave it’s wrapped in. That’s right. Bacon. Weave. But I say the best part is the ability to throw all these random components together and get an amazing result that is a meatloaf the entire family can get on board with. So without further adieu, here are the ingredients you’ll need.

Ingredients for Meatloaf Recipe

1 pound of bacon, weaved (picture below) – if you want to do it right, it better be Applewood smoked.
1 pound of ground beef
1/2 pound of pork – I prefer left over BBQ pulled pork, but ground pork or the like is equally acceptable
1 medium onion, chopped – I like small, but if you’re an onion fan use large. It’s also a good idea to give it a quick saute before you add it to the other ingredients, especially if you do a thick chop.
1 red/orange bell pepper OR 2-3 small yellow/orange peppers, whichever you prefer.
2/3 cup of dried bread crumbs – plain works, or you can use Italian for an extra kick.
1 large egg, slightly beaten
1/2 Parmesan cheese – CHEESE!
1 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp Worcestershire sauce
Dash of salt
Pinch of White pepper – or any other pepper you have around.
1/3 cup of whole milk – evaporated milk works just as well and is just as tasty!
1 cup of “Barbeque Sizzy Sauce” (recipe below) or your favorite store bought sauce

Start by turning your oven on and heat to 350 degrees. I really hate when I get through all this work and realize I forgot to turn the dang oven on! Line a baking pan (you don’t even need a loaf pan!) with some foil or grease it up with some butter.

Next, make your bacon weave that is going to be placed on top of your meatloaf. Here’s a picture of how it should look:
How To Bacon Weave - Meatloaf Recipe
YUMMY!
Close Up of Bacon Weave

So now you’re going to mix up your ingredients, minus the BBQ sauce, and form into a loaf shape on your pan.

Ingredients for Barbeque Sizzy Sauce

Ketchup
Brown Sugar
Dry Mustard
Tabasco Sauce, Sriracha, or any of your favorite hot sauce
And if you want to get real crazy, throw a little Dijon in there!

Mix that ish up and you have yourself some good ol Barbeque Sizzy Sauce. If you can’t handle the lack of caution, here’s more precise measurements:

1 1/2 cups of Ketchup
1/3 cup of Brown Sugar
1 tsp Dry Mustard
1 tbsp Hot Sauce
1 tsp Dijon Mustard (optional)

Use 1/2 cup on top of your meatloaf before you put your bacon weave on.

Put your bacon weave over the top. It stays secure for the most part because of the sauce, but I like to wrap my bacon weave under the loaf for added security. I hate when bacon curls!

Place in your heated over and cook that mug for 1-1 1/2 hours. The anticipation will kill you, but do not under cook it! The bacon should be crispy when done.

Finished Meatloaf Recipe

Crispy Bacon Weave

Use the rest of the Barbeque Sizzy Sauce for dipping, or serve plain with mashed tatos or corn! This is truly the best meatloaf recipe I’ve ever used! Enjoy!

How Does It Taste: Sweet N Low

Sweet N Low Review

I got some samples of Sweet N Low the other day. It’s been a while since I’ve used any artificial sweetener, so I was pretty excited to try it out. Taste is the biggest thing for me when choosing a sweetener. I don’t like “fake sugar taste”, and I definitely don’t want to eff up my morning coffee with something that makes it have an after bite. I’m pretty harsh on these artificial sweeteners, also because in large amounts or prolonged usage, studies show they could possibly do harm to you.

Anyway, as I thought, Sweet N Low is still my favorite artificial sweetener to turn to. I use Sweet N Low whenever I order coffee in a restaurant and most recently, as a sugar replacement for some fantastic cocktails. Drinking booze is risky business if you’re on a strict diet or have diabetes, but these recipes from Sweet N Low take some amazing cocktails to the next level!

Sweet N Low Samples

Strawberry Granita Freeze

Strawberry Granita Freeze Recipe

#TeamSweetNLow


This yummy blend is sure to be a favorite for any strawberry daiquiri lover. Add some tequila and garnish with a lime peel. I say it’s a strawberry daiquiri with a twist!

Sunny Citrus Soda

Sunny Citrus Soda Recipe

#TeamSweetNLow


This fizzy cocktail is great for a hot and sunny day! Add vodka to this yummy mixture for a great time at an outdoor picnic! The amount of vitamin C from all the fruit juice is sure to keep you from having a hangover if you accidentally drink to much…and trust me, with flavor like this and just knowing there’s less sugar, you’re sure to drink a few!

Skinny-Mini Mojito

Skinny-Mini Mojito Recipe

#TeamSweetNLow


While I am totally not down with this whole usage of “skinny” as a marketing practice these days, if you’re a Mojito lover, you will definitely like this spin on your average, full of sugar, drink!

Light & Sassy Party Punch

Light and Sassy Party Punch Recipe

#TeamSweetNLow


I’m going to go ahead and let you know this mix is like ambrosia meets hunch punch. Strawberries, lemon, cranberry, pineapple all make for a delicious and fantastically refreshing punch! Don’t forget the rum!!

Skinny Sangria Blanca

Skinny Sangria Blanca Recipe

#TeamSweetNLow


Again with the skinny! Sheesh, don’t people realize how negative the word skinny can be? Not too mention, a ton of people use sugar substitutes because THEY HAVE TO! Not because they are trying to conform to some “skinny” standards.

Super Skinny Margarita

Super Skinny Margarita Recipe

#TeamSweetNLow


I know margarita lovers know how to drink their margaritas. Every person I know has their specific way to do a margarita and nothing else is acceptable to them. If you do decide to try a lighter, less calorie version of your all-time favorite drink, then try this recipe. You can’t go wrong. And if you do, you can always just add more tequila!

If you’re looking for some more great recipes with sugar substitute, for a lighter fare, check out SweetNLow.com/Recipes

How Does It Taste: McCormick Grill Mates

This past weekend, I got to have a testing party for a plethora of the new McCormick Grill Mates spices! I’m not a spicy kind of girl, typically because I like to let meat do it’s own thing, for the most part, so I had my reservations about how I would these spices would taste. Here’s a picture of all the great flavor combinations we tried!

McCormick Grill Mates

Samples of McCormick Grill Mates

#GrillMates

We all loved the individual smells of the spice combinations. My personal favorites include the Steakhouse Mushroom and the Worcestershire Pub Burger. Our kitchen was smelling absolutely fantastic after we spiced our burgers with the McCormick #GrillMates spice combinations….and the anticipation was built! We could hardly wait for the spice to set in before we cooked the burgers; we had to exercise some serious self control! One of my friends was so excited about the Worcestershire Pub Burger spice, he got way too trigger happy with the seasoning while we cooked and put way too much on his burger! He said it was still good, though!

We had brats and hot dogs as well. We took the opportunity to try out the super delicious, all natural, Montreal Steak steak sauce. I love pretty much anything that’s all natural, especially since I’m pregnant right now. And since it tasted really good, It was the perfect touch to an amazing bratwurst!

At around $3.50-$7.00 a pop (in my local stores), these spices are a pretty great deal and full of flavor!

The only negative feedback I have was about the Classic Burger mix. People said things like “smells like Burger King ripoff” and “makes me want to vomit”.

Overall, it was a successful sample party and my friends were very happy to take home some of their very own McCormick Grill Mates Montreal Steak seasoning mix samples.

grilling-out-with-mccormick-grill-mates

Have you tried any of the McCormick Grill Mates new flavors? Which ones were your favs?

My First Trimester

My First Trimester

So my first trimester has been quite a doozy. I assume it is for any pregnant lady. I’ve been pretty emotional, which I think is pretty typical, and I’ve been eating much more than normal. I was able to stop smoking before I found out I was pregnant, so that turned out to be extra convenient. I think it would’ve been much more difficult to quit with the added stress of baby. I feel it is super important to make an effort during a pregnancy to treat your body extra well.

Things About The First Trimester You Probably Didn’t Want To Know

I’ve definitely noticed things during my first trimester that everyone expects. The increased hunger, being super sleepy, and peeing ALL THE TIME, are among a few of them. But there are also several things that I didn’t realize would happen around this time.

My belly seems so huge! I know it’s not actually the baby, but its not just gas either. During my first trimester, I’ve completely lost my flat tummy. Oh and the gas…my Lord the gas is absolutely terrible. I feel like I could power a few small cars. I’ve had more gas in the past two weeks than I’ve had in my entire life! And it’s sooooo uncomfortable. Feels like my tummy is going to explode. And speaking of my tummy exploding, I can’t freaking poop! And when I can, it doesn’t work right. Pooping is a total asshole right now.

One of the worst problems I’ve had is a chronic headache. It’s turned into a horrible migraine two times now and I’ve ended up in the ER twice. The first time, they gave me Reglin and Benadryl. The second time, they gave me Morphine. I refused it at first, so they tried Reglin again, but it did nothing, so I finally accepted the morphine. That was super scary for more than one reason. Surprisingly, I’ve never had morphine, and I never envisioned my first try would be with my baby. The doc told me that if I went on in that amount of pain, though, it could harm the baby. One of those benefits outweighs the risk type of deals. aye. Surprisingly, the morphine did little to ease my migraine either, so they offered more morphine or I could go home with a prescription of Percocets and Zofran. I’m really not down with painkillers and I was trying to get through this pregnancy without Zofran, because I just don’t trust it, but I figured that combo would be better than more morphine, so I went home. I was throwing up on the way home, and my migraine lasted a couple of more days. It was horrible. I’m definitely going to hold that over my baby when he gets here.

So that’s another thing. I’ve always heard a lot of women feel like they know what the sex is, and I sort of always felt that was more of a myth, like the carrying high or carrying low, high or low heart rate, etc. But I definitely have felt like this baby is a boy. I feel totally ridiculous about this, but I really feel this way.

The First Ultrasound

So yesterday, I had my first ultrasound. It was amazing! I was excited and I knew I’d be super happy about seeing my baby, but when I saw that face, I actually busted out laughing! It was uncontrollable. The tech had to stop several times because every time he jumped up and down, I laughed so hard. Tears were streaming down my eyes, but I was giggling. It was the best feeling in the whole wide world. And the sonogram pictures were awesome. Here is my amazing Mohawk baby:

My first trimester ultrasound picture

And here’s the side view of the baby:

Sonogram Image From My First Trimester

Other Side Effects During My First Trimester

-Everything tastes bad, or rather, just not right. At all. But it seems like that’s only going to be during my first trimester. I was able to eat some beef the other without it tasting super weird.
-A horrible taste in my mouth that is just now starting to go away (Thank GOD!) The only thing I could do that would give me relief from the nasty sour taste was to gargle warm salt water
-Emotional ups and downs….duh…I was already girly enough, but I have seriously been so excited by the most ridiculous things and cry about the least sad things
-Sharp pains that feel like muscle cramps in my lower belly. I found out this is ligaments stretching to get ready for baby. Rolling over at night, or moving fast was the worst, but the pains seem to be happening less and less.
-Huge boobs! I love them, but some days they hurt with the slightest touch. They really are nice though. It looks like I got mini implants. I just hope they stay this way after the baby.

Follow Up: Going Off The Deep End

So a few weeks back, I posted about how I’ve basically gone off the deep end this year. I thought I was going off the deep end, but now I don’t think that’s necessarily true.

I want to follow up and clarify a few things:

I did make some decisions, most would probably consider quite irrational. I did feel regret about leaving my man and moving out of Texas. And I still do feel that regret. However, I don’t think I made the biggest mistake of my life. I was obviously very emotional when I wrote that post, and probably significantly over-reacting to my situation. I do miss him so terribly that sometimes I feel like I can’t even breathe, but at the end of the day, HE DOESN’T WANT THE THINGS THAT WILL MAKE ME HAPPY. That’s why he’s just not good for me. No matter how much I love him and want him to be the one I’m with, he doesn’t want the same. And it’s clear I’ve been wasting my time thinking he’d come around. So silly.

To keep my mind off the pain, I’ve been keeping myself as busy as possible. I’m also excited to say that I’ve been off the drink for a couple of months now, and if you’ve been keeping up, you know I’ve also quit smoking recently, too. These were also reasons I felt I needed to leave. I wasn’t receiving any support in my wishes to give up the drink for a little while and I knew if I was going to be able to do it, I would have to get away from my situation.

Some days are much harder than others, obviously, as is the nature of living. I just keep trying to convince myself that I made the right decision and I made it for good reasons, so I can keep following through with it.

And in the end,
it was just a dream
where I was so upset
I broke the seam

Its just not fair
to cry because I can
why wasn’t I
just born a man?

Cigarette Free For One Month!

Cigarette Free For One Month!

I am very excited to say I have been cigarette free for one month, as of yesterday! I have had no relapses, slip-ups, or any other screw ups. Whoaddddy. If you want to read more about my journey to quitting smoking, check out the post.

I am also excited to say that one month after quitting, I am having less dizzy spells, less “seeing spots” episodes, and I generally feel less winded all the time. Also, my skin, oh my beautiful porcelain skin is making a recovery. :)

It makes me happy to know I am doing the right thing for my body.

I keep thinking if I get too excited about it, then I’m going to start having serious cravings or something and I can already tell I’m starting to get annoyed more easily with my friends who are continuing to smoke. I’m trying not to be that person, but since this has been somewhat easy for me, I feel I’m starting to expect my friends to give up smoking too.

Mayday Everyday