The Creative Princess: October 2012

Weekend Wrap-up 10.30

So, it has been like AGES since I have done an official weekend wrap-up.  It has been just a bit crazy around here, but really what's new....right?

This past weekend was a rare low-key weekend. Hubby was off and we had NOTHING planned.  Well, that was until I got a call from Fox 14's Lindsey Henry wanting to do a story about couponing. Enter hectic rushing around the house cleaning and no sleep! AAAAAAHHHHH!!!!  I have been interviewed about couponing before but never for TV my home!  As soon as I get a link to the story, I will let you know. For those of you in the Joplin, Mo or Pittsburg, Ks viewing area, you can watch it tonight on the 9pm news!

While I was being interviewed, hubby took the girls to our land to look for some wood to use in our smoker.  What an adventure that turned into!  MG had a BLAST!  Mads, not so much.  lol  This really does not surprise me though.  They came home and excitedly told me about all of the different animal tracks.....and poop.....they found.  HA!  They also came home with some persimmons.
Do you know about persimmons? Well, they don't taste good so don't worry about a recipe coming soon using them!  lol  But you can cut the seeds open and "predict" how your winter will be. 
 Now, I have not researched on how accurate this use of weather prediction is but, it has been done around here for YEARS.  I tried to cut the seeds open but after nearly cutting my thumb off, hubby took over.  Want to know what we found?
 Spoons! We cut three persimmons open and EVERY. SINGLE. SEED. had a "spoon" inside.  Hubby tells me this means we are going to have a "good" winter. Meaning we will be digging out lots of snow.  SNOW!  Oh I hope so!  I love snow days!!!  {Remember I said this when March gets here and I am ready to pull my hair out if we have a 2 week "snow-day" again.}

The rest of Saturday was pretty uneventful, except for Saturday night. I don't know what was going on but I did NOT sleep well.

Sunday afternoon we carved pumpkins. The girls had a blast!
Mads LOVED digging in the pumpkins and getting all the goop out. MG wanted NOTHING to do with that part.  lol  

After we got the pumpkins cleaned out we let the girls design their pumpkins. Mads was able to draw what she wanted and MG told me what she wanted.  Well, more like showed me.....
She wanted a silly face "like this".

Hubby cut Mads pumpkin out and I did MGs, they are no Pumpkin Brains pumpkins but for us, they were decent.
MGs is on the left and Mads is on the right.

The girls had a blast and to me, that is all that matters.

Oh!  Speaking of Pumpkin Brains! Be sure to watch The List tomorrow night 10/31 TONIGHT at 6:30pm!! {Check your local listings!} My cousin Karrah will be featured!  WooHoo!!

SO! Watch my cousin Karrah at 6:30pm CST on 'The List' then, watch me at 9pm CST on Joplin's Fox 14!

I will have two new recipes up for you this week!  I know!  I must be sick or something, it has been MONTHS since I have had more than 2 posts in a week!  HAHA!  

I hope you all have a wonderful week, a safe Halloween and please continue to pray for the East Coast.

Much Love,

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Green Mountain Coffee Review and Giveaway

A few days ago the AWESOME peeps over at BzzAgent sent me a box with Green Mountain Coffee samples in it.  I could not WAIT to break into the box and try it out!

I decided to try the Vermont Country Blend, I thought most of the others would probably be too bold for my taste. I usually drink flavored coffee which is a lighter "coffee" flavor.  In other words, I don't really like my coffee to taste like coffee!  HA!
 So what did I think?  I thought the flavor was good.  It was a bit too bold for my taste but it was still really good. There is a Mountain Blueberry flavor included in the box and I plan to try it soon, I will let you know what I think. What about the other flavors? I will be saving those for when my stepdad comes to visit, he likes a bold coffee.
Green Mountain houses some of my favorite K-Cup brands. You can see all of their brands here. Green Mountain also works to increase public awareness of responsibly grown coffee through certification  programs, such as Fair Trade and Rainforest Alliance. Fair Trade assures farmers a minimum price for their goods and links farmers directly with importers, Rainforest Alliance encourages farmers to grow crops sustainably over the long term. Cool right?

Right now you can check out the Green Mountain Facebook page to see Grace Potter and Michael Franti Fair Trade source trips and also check out the live stream of their concerts!

Would you like to win a box of the samples? How about some coupons? I have 1 box of samples to giveaway and 5 coupons! Be sure to enter the giveaway! This giveaway starts NOW and will end on Friday, November 2nd.

I was provided the samples and coupons as part of a BzzCampaign from BzzAgent, all opinions are my own.

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German Chocolate Cupcakes - Celebrating Mads

Cake, Cool Whip, Frosting, Cupcake, Dessert, Cool Whip Frosting, #Cbias, #CoolWhipFrosting
In my family, we love to celebrate every day. Whether it is big or small, I like to make a big deal out of things. When I learned that Cool Whip came out with a new line of Frosting I KNEW I had to incorporate it in our next celebration.

On Wednesday we had our first Parent Teacher Conference of the year for Miss Mads. I was very anxious as some of the papers that have been sent home weren't that great. There have been a lot of corrections and some confusion with some of her letters.

Hubby and I spent nearly an hour and a half talking with her teacher and going over things.  In the classroom Mads is doing excellent! In fact, she received an 'Excellent' mark on every single in class things such as listening, doing what is told, helping others, etc.  YAY! We also learned that she is ahead in math and reading and is nearly a full year ahead on word recognition!  WooHoo!  Goooo Mads!

I had already planned on celebrating the first 9 weeks being over but now, I had even MORE to celebrate and the cupcakes I had planned on making were turned into something much more worthy.
Cake, Cool Whip, Frosting, Cupcake, Dessert, Cool Whip Frosting, #Cbias, #CoolWhipFrosting
German Chocolate Cupcakes
Makes 24

For Cake:
1 Box German Chocolate Cake Mix
Egg, Water and Oil called for on box

For Topping:
Chocolate Cool Whip Frosting
Pecans for Garnish
Toasted Coconut for Garnish

Mix and bake cupcakes according to package directions.
Remove from oven and allow to cool completly.
While Cupcakes are cooling, toast your coconut, I used about 1/2-1 C, and make your sauce {recipe below}
Once Cupcakes are cool, top with Chocolate Cool Whip Frosting.
Sprinkle with Pecans and then drizzle with German Chocolate Sauce.

German Chocolate Sauce
1 Egg
2/3 C Evaporated Milk
2/3 C Sugar
1/4 C Butter

In a medium saucepan, slightly beat egg.
Add all of the remaining ingredients over medium heat.
Continue to stir for 5-8 minutes or until mixture is thick.
Once thick, remove from heat and allow to cool completely.
Once cool, drizzle over Cupcakes.

The true test though was if Mads would like them, after all we were celebrating her!
Cake, Cool Whip, Frosting, Cupcake, Dessert, Cool Whip Frosting, #Cbias, #CoolWhipFrosting
They passed the smell test!  If anything passes the smell test, it then and only then moves on to a taste test.
Cake, Cool Whip, Frosting, Cupcake, Dessert, Cool Whip Frosting, #Cbias, #CoolWhipFrosting
And the verdict?  She LOVED them!  WooHoo!!

Have you tried the new Cool Whip Frosting yet? It is a great topping for many desserts! We tried all three favors, Vanilla, Cream Cheese and Chocolate.  My favorite? The Chocolate, hands down! It was like eating an amazingly creamy chocolate mousse. The Cream Cheese was my least favorite.

To find even more cake and/or cupcake recipes featuring the new Cool Whip Frosting check them out on Pinterest and Facebook! You can also check out even more from our shopping trip on my Google + Story!
If you want to learn EVEN MORE about Cool Whip Frosting, come join our Twitter Party! The party will be on Wednesday, October 24th at 1-2pm EST!  Be sure to RSVP here to be eligible to win some awesome prizes!
I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This content has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Kraft Cool Whip.  #CoolWhipFrosting #CBias #SocialFabric All opinions are my own.

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Bacon....It's BACON!

Wright Brand Bacon, Brown Sugar, Sam’s Club, Recipes, Bacon, CBias, Meals Together, Social Fabric
Last week I had the pleasure to head to Sam's Club to pick up some Wright Brand Bacon to use in recipes for a #MealsTogether BACON party! Of course I could not pass that up!
 I loaded the girls up and headed to our local Sam's.  The girls get along so well, sometimes.  Luckily the day we went shopping was one of those days!

We searched through Sam's as I had seen the bacon we were after a few weeks ago. Only this time, it was not in the spot it was in last time.
They moved the Wright Brand Bacon over to the premium deli area of the store.
I decided to get both the Applewood and the Brown Sugar flavored bacon.  I had not tried the Brown Sugar bacon yet and was very excited about it!  It did not disappoint!

We had our bacon party over the weekend.  I love having my friends over for meals together. My MIL and two of my friends came over to party with us.
I have the cutest friends!  Natasha is holding a Maple Bacon Cupcake {recipe below}.

We had such a good time sampling all of the goodies my hubby and I made.
I made Chocolate Chip Cookies with Bacon!
 Hubby smoked a Bacon Explosion. Oh my gosh!  It was AMAZING!
I made some Bacon Cheddar Pinwheels.
As mentioned above, I also made my Maple Bacon Cupcakes.  YUM!

Maple Bacon Cupcakes
Makes 24

1 Box French Vanilla Cake Mix
3 Eggs
1 1/3 Cups Water
1/3 Cup Oil
1 tsp Maple Extract
1/4-1/2 Cup Wright Brand Brown Sugar Bacon - Cooked crisp and chopped
1) Mix your ingredients according to package directions included Eggs, Oil and Water.
2) Add Maple Extract to batter and mix well.
3) Fold in bacon.
4) Separate batter between 24 cupcake liners and bake according to box directions.
5) Allow to cool completely then frost with Maple Frosting.

Maple Frosting
2 Sticks Butter - Softened
6-7 Cups Confectioners Sugar
1 tsp Maple Extract
3-6 Tbs Milk
Wright Brand Brown Sugar Bacon for Garnish - Cooked crisp and chopped
1) Place Butter in bowl of stand mixer and mix until creamy
2) Turn mixer down and begin adding Confectioners Sugar one cup at a time, allow to incorporate between each addition.
3) Add Maple Extract and mix well.
4) Add Milk one Tbs at a time until you get the consistency you desire.
5) Place in piping bag {or zip-top bag with a corner snipped off} and pipe onto cupcakes.
6) Garnish by sprinkling bacon on top.

**Note: For my party I used light margarine in place of butter for the frosting, it tasted great but the consistency was off a bit.

We had a LOT of cupcakes left over so I ended up taking them to my Women's Meeting at church, they were a HUGE hit! Everyone is always so surprised at just how great they are.  They taste just like pancakes and bacon!
Even the kids had a GREAT time!

What are some of your favorite recipes that include bacon?  I am always looking for yummy new recipes!

To learn more about Wright Brand Bacon, check them out Twitter, Facebook and on their website!

I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Wright Brand Bacon #CBias #SocialFabric

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Cinderella's Royal Ball

Cinderella, Disney, Princess, #DisneyPrincessWMT, Cbias
A few weeks ago I told you that we were getting ready to Celebrate Cinderella by having a Royal Ball.  To get ready for our ball we did all sorts of things!  We had our gowns pressed, purchased all of our goodies for our wonderful guests, and even attended some perfectly princess events.
Disney, Princess, #DisneyPrincessWMT, Walmart, #Cbias, Royal Ball
One of the events was the Disney Cinderella Retailtainment Event at our local Walmart.  It was a cold and windy day so Princess MG and Princess Mads had to dress in layers. At the event we received coloring sheets and cake. The cake was SO good!  We also purchased the recently re-released Cinderella Blu-Ray/DVD to watch at our upcoming Royal Ball.
Disney, Princess, Walmart, #DisneyPrincessWMT, #Cbias, Cinderella
We also downloaded the Royal Ball app (you can find it in your app store here or here). We had so much fun with the app!  You get to create beautiful ensembles, choose your crown, design your carriage and attended a Royal Ball!  You can also unlock other outfits and bring your carriage to life by scanning select images in your local Walmart.  The girls have had a blast with this app, they of course love the dancing the best. You can also take a picture of yourself in your newly created ensemble and share the pic right from your phone, or send it to your local Walmart to be printed!  So awesome!
Disney, Princess, #DisneyPrincessWMT, Walmart, #Cbias, Royal Ball
Party day had finally arrived and we were all so excited! We invited 16 girls to the party, 12 RSVP'd and 4 attended the Royal Ball.  We were having terrible weather the day of the party, but we still had a BLAST!
Disney, Princess, #DisneyPrincessWMT, Walmart, #Cbias, Royal Ball
The girls colored, decorated cookies, put on a Disney Princess Fashion Show, danced and watched Cinderella. I am pretty sure they all had a really good time because there were tons of giggles and smiles.
Disney, Princess, #DisneyPrincessWMT, Walmart, #Cbias, Royal Ball
We also ate tons of yummy treats! You can't have a Royal Ball without treats! The Chocolate Dipped Marshmallows were definitely a hit! I also made cupcakes and punch. The girls took candy, stickers, bracelets, candy, crowns, rings, candy and gumballs home in their treat bags.

 Before the girls left, they begged me to have another Royal Ball.  I promised we would, maybe in the spring. I don't usually throw parties at my house, I really despise the clean-up, but I am so glad we had this Royal Ball! 

I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Disney Consumer Products, Inc. #CBias #SocialFabric All opinions are my own.

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Getting a little personal with #MaLoUnderwear

Last week my hubby and I celebrated our 9th anniversary. Over the years many things have changed. One thing that hasn't? My hubbies taste in underwear.
Mario Lopez, Kmart, Men's Fashion, Underwear, #Cbias, Malo Underwear
Bet you didn't see THAT one coming!  HAHA!

I am serious! For the past 9 years I have bought that man the same type and brand of underwear every time it is needed. It must be gray, black or blue in color and they must be boxer briefs.

The pic above is a pair of his current underwear....that he has had for a few years now. They are stretched out and baggy.

A few days ago I headed out to Kmart to check out what is new in Men's Fashion in regards to Men's Underwear.

As I rounded the corner I saw this......
Mario Lopez, Kmart, Men's Fashion, Underwear, #Cbias, Malo Underwear
I mean REALLY?!?! That had to have been the BEST display I have ever seen! I applaud the marketing team of #MaLoUnderwear!

If you can't tell from the picture above, that is Mario Lopez....formerly known as AC Slater from Saved by the Bell....formerly known as Eric from Kids Incorporated. Yep, I have been a fan for a while.


Getting back to my shopping trip....

There were a lot of things I liked about the display. One of my favorites is the packaging. On the front of the package you can tell what is inside because it is clearly highlighted as to what type of underwear is inside.
Mario Lopez, Kmart, Men's Fashion, Underwear, #Cbias, Malo Underwear
When you flip the package over, it is clear! This allows you to see the exact color of the underwear inside.
Mario Lopez, Kmart, Men's Fashion, Underwear, #Cbias, Malo Underwear
I ended up purchasing a package of the pretty colors and a package of the standard black and grays. I kept to the boxer briefs, don't want to push too much. 

So. What did hubby think?
"I would not have picked them out. The colors are just too bold for me."

Well, glad I picked them out then!  lol I actually like them and think the colors are great! The boy can use some excitement in his life, if it comes in the form of colored be it!
Mario Lopez, Kmart, Men's Fashion, Underwear, #Cbias, Malo Underwear
See, the "bold" colors are not that noticeable....especially since it is just the waistband that is colored.

Final thoughts?
I would totally purchase these again for him! I like the colors, I like that they are not baggy, I like the thick waistband that is not flimsy.

Be sure to check them out next time you are in Kmart!

Want more info about MaLo Underwear? Be sure to check them out on Pinterest, Facebook and follow Mario on Twitter!

I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and MaLo #CBias #SocialFabric All opinions are my own...and my husbands own.

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Celebrating Cinderella

You guys! I am SO excited!
#DisneyPrincessWMT, Cinderella, #Cbias
 I mean SERIOUSLY excited!

Disney is releasing Cinderella again....after 7 years in the Disney Vault!  Oh my gosh!

I don't know how it was for you but, Cinderella was the very FIRST Disney Princess I was introduced to when I was little.  That I remember anyway.  I can not WAIT to share all of the magic of Cinderella with my girls!  Eeek!

Over the next few weeks a few things are happening that you need to be aware of, if you are a Disney Princess fan!

First up!  On Oct 2nd the re-released Cinderella comes out on Blu-Ray/DVD!

On October 6th select Walmart stores will be having a Retailtainment Event from 11am-3pm and guess what.....YOU are invited!!
Cinderella, #DisneyPrincessWMT, #Cbias
 Finally....I will be having a PARTY to celebrate all the Cinderella fun on Oct 13th!  Oh my girls are SO excited!

We went shopping the other day to pick up a few things for the party.
Walmart, #Cbias, Disney
I have actually been scoping out the Cinderella display for like 2 weeks! I knew exactly what I wanted to get! But, I was surprised to learn a few of the items were already on clearance and because of that, some of the #DisneyPrincessWMT things I wanted were sold out.  Bummer!
#Cbias, Walmart
But, I was still able to get a lot of other things! I seriously can not wait to have our party! We are iviting some of the girls friends over to watch Cinderella, do some Princess crafts and have a Princess snack. I think we will have a GREAT time!
Well, we will have a great time as long as MG decides we will!  lol  She has totally been acting 3 lately and that is sometimes not so fun.  But, she is still so stinking cute when she is grumpy!  HA!  The above pic is from this weekend, to help the girls get in the Cinderella spirit we took them to see Disney on Ice. Despite the look on MGs face, she had a great time. She is upset because I refused to pay $15 for a snocone! It's so hard to reason with her sometimes.  lol
Also, to help you get even MORE into the Cinderella mood....there is a great new app! Be sure to check it out in your app store and let your little girl have a blast becoming a princess!  I will be posting more info on this soon! So be sure to check back!

I am a member of the Collective Bias™ Social Fabric® Community.  This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias™ and Disney Consumer Products, Inc. #CBias #SocialFabric

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