Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Applegate Natural and Organic Meats

*This post was made possible through a partnership with Applegate.  All opinions expressed are my own.

Happy New Year and welcome to a new decade! 2020 seems to bring more opportunities and experiences! I feel more confident to try new things and motivated to stick to goals. Because 2020 is so powerful, I wanted to bring in the new year with realistic resolutions. Instead of trying (and failing) to reach unrealistic expectations, I want to be kinder to myself and incorporate healthier meals into my diet.

No better time time than now to start with Applegate Natural and Organic Meats!  I've heard of the organic brand before, but never gave them a try until they sent me some of their products.

Applegate is the nation's leading natural and organic meat company that is focused on changing the meat we eat.

Applegate products are GMO and antibiotic-free, without artificial ingredients or chemical nitrites that come from humanely raised animals. Applegate’s portfolio includes a large range of products that are Whole30 approved, gluten free and sugar free.

Founded in 1987, Applegate produces high-quality natural and organic hot dogs, bacon, sausages, deli meats, cheese and frozen products. Their products are made without GMO ingredients, and are sourced from farms where animals are treated with care and respect and are allowed to grow at their natural rate, all part of their mission - Changing The Meat We Eat®.

High-quality can mean many things, but to Applegate this means their food is: 
• From animals raised humanely without antibiotics, hormones or growth promotants 
• From animals fed a vegetarian or pasture-centered diet (our beef is 100% grass-fed) 
• Free of added chemical nitrites, nitrates or phosphates 
• Free of artificial ingredients or preservatives

Turkey burgers constantly get a bad rap for being drier than beef, but it's all about the quality and preparation for the perfect burger.  What I love about Applegate's turkey burgers is that I don't sacrifice flavor by picking a healthier choice.  When I cooked them in the air fryer, they were juicy, perfectly seasoned and extremely satisfying!  They are a great alternative with less fat than a traditional beef burger.

Because I had too many to hoard for myself, I made a burger bar to share with the family.  Inspired by charcuterie boards you may have seen at holiday parties, I dressed up my board with typical toppings and finishes for the perfect Applegate meal.  Needless to say, it was a hit!

Nothing beats a juicy burger with the perfect fixings.  Applegate made the switch to healthier eats so much easier for the new decade. I'm excited to stock up the fridge and freezer with more of their goods. 

What are you most excited about in 2020?  Do you have any resolutions?

*Applegate turkey burgers are made with the following Turkey Raising Practices: (compared to practices outlined by National Turkey Federation) 
No antibiotics ever 
Applegate Humanely Raised 100% vegetarian diets, no animal by-products 
More space (up to 50% more) and better air quality 
Lighting system designed to reduce stress and promote natural growth Minimal beak conditioning and no toe alterations 
Environmental enrichments 

**Notable facts about Applegate turkey burger ingredients: No chemical nitrates or nitrites 
No artificial ingredients or preservatives 
No fillers 
No GMO ingredients.

Monday, December 16, 2019

Chocolate Doughnuts with Peppermint Glaze

This post is sponsored by Nielsen-Massey.  I am pleased to be invited back to share a holiday recipe using products from their Holiday Flavors Bundle.

Christmas is a time for baking.  I have a lot of fun making holiday treats for my family to enjoy.  To give a classic doughnut recipe a holiday twist, I incorporated festive extracts; like peppermint and Bourbon vanilla.

Weekend mornings we sometimes drive and pick up doughnuts.  Here's how I made these delicious doughnuts at home.  
Ingredients Doughnuts
1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
 1/4 cup cocoa powder
  1/2 teaspoon baking soda
 1/4 teaspoon salt
 1/2 teaspoon Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract
2 large eggs
 6 tablespoons sour cream
 1/4 cup milk
 1/4 cup vegetable oil
non-stick spray
crushed candy canes for garnish

Ingredients Clear Glaze
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup water
1/4 teaspoon Pure Peppermint Extract

Directions Doughnuts 
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.  Spray doughnut pan with a non-stick cooking spray.  In a large bowl, mix together dry ingredients.  In a separate bowl, whisk together sour cream, oil, eggs, and Madagascar Bourbon Pure Vanilla Extract.  Add the dry ingredients to the wet and mix together until smooth. Place doughnut batter in a plastic bag, snip a corner off the tip and pipe batter into doughnut pan. *Be careful not to overfill. Bake for 12 to 14 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into the thickest part of a doughnut comes out clean.

Directions Glaze
Combine water and sugar and Pure Peppermint Extract in a small saucepan with a whisk.  Bring to a boil.  Boil until the sugar dissolves and the syrup turns clear.  Allow glaze to cool slightly above room temperature, then brush each doughnut with a very thin coat of glaze and sprinkle with crushed candy canes.

*This post was made possible through a partnership with Nielsen-Massey. All opinions expressed are my own.

Friday, December 13, 2019

Very Merry Christmas Campaign

I prefer shopping online during the holiday season.  I'm not a fan of crowds and busy parking lots simply make me anxious.  Besides, most of my family lives beyond an easy car ride.  Shopping for thoughtful gifts online and having them delivered to their door takes the stress out of gift giving.

I partnered with Wayfair to share a holiday wish list for gift giving as part of their Very Merry Christmas campaign.  I'm so happy to work with them because I truly love their products.    

I put together a fun list of presents I know my home-decor-obsessed family and friends will love.

wall accentsHanging Stoneware Wall Decor // More Wall Accentsblankets & throwsMckenny Throw // More Blankets & Throwsall picture framesGeometric Picture Frame // More Picture Frames
vasesStoneware Table Vase // More Vasesall storage containersVegetable and Flower Wicker Basket // More Storage Containersall plantersTerracotta Pot Planter Set // More Planters
mugs & teacupsPrimitive Coffee Mug // More Mugs & Teacupscandle holdersArtisan Wood Candlestick // More Candle Holderscoffee mugs & teacupsAerne Coffee Mug // More Coffee Mugs
scented oils & diffusersMarble Essential Oil Diffuser // More Scented Oils & Diffusersmixing bowlsHobnail Stoneware Mixing Bowl Set // More Mixing Bowlskitchen canisters & jarsKitchen Canister Set // More Kitchen Canisters & Jars

1. I love the look of this ceramic wind chime.  The pieces look handmade and totally unique.  This would make the perfect finishing touch for your home or garden.

2. A cozy throw blanket to snuggle up with this winter.  The stripes and fringe trim are an eye-catching accent.

3. This picture frame would look great on a desk or mantel.  You could personalize it by including a sweet family photo.

4. A modern vase to hold flowers or stand alone on a shelf.

5. Surprise the garden lover in your life with a wicker basket to carry in fruit and vegetables harvested fresh from their garden.

6. This is a cute little planter set.  I love the fluted shape of the pots.

7. Coffee mugs are a practical gift.  This is perfect for someone who is serious about their morning coffee!

8. Candlesticks always make a nice gift.  Adding just a touch of black into your home decor is edgy, yet sophisticated.

9. These stoneware mugs received great reviews on Wayfair's site.  They come in a few colors, but the beige/tan option will coordinate nicely in a neutral palette.

10. Oil diffusers will keep your home smelling great.  They've become pretty popular lately and I can see why!  Not sure what to get that person who has everything?  They make the best gifts.

11. What to buy for someone who likes to bake?  Mixing bowls are a perfect gift for blending ingredients.  Pretty and functional!

12. Some things are too good to give away.  Who am I kidding?  I'd be tempted to keep this canister set for myself.

Happy gift-giving season!  Keep Wayfair in mind when it comes time to shop for home-decor-obsessed family and friends.

*This post was written in partnership with Wayfair.  All opinions expressed are my own.


Saturday, December 7, 2019

How I Decorated Our Holiday Table

When decorating for the holidays, I like to keep things simple and stress free.

Using things found in nature, I transformed our dining room table for the holiday season.

It all started with a metal cornucopia filled with eucalyptus branches.  I love the texture of the seeds.  I arranged the stems loosely, to create a natural cascade.

To make it a bit more special, I scooped fruit from the kitchen bowl and had fun mixing it into the centerpiece!  Added bonus--you can eat the leftovers!!

My husband spotted the ornamental corn while grocery shopping and thought I might like to decorate with it.

It's the perfect addition.  I love the range of colors on the kernels.

The soft glow of candlelight makes the whole scene warm and inviting.

Hope this inspires you to take a more natural approach to decorating this holiday season.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

Reveal Day!--Fall 2019 One Room Challenge/Guest Participant Week 6

 Oh my goodness, what an actual challenge it's been making it to week six.  After a lot of late nights, I'm finally finished and excited to share the reveal with you!

But first I would like to thank Fanimation for helping me achieve the look of this room.  Partnering with them has been such a wonderful experience.  Our new ceiling fans are modern and stylish.  They're mounted flush to the ceiling and run so quiet.  We love the option to control our ceiling fans by using our smart devices.

As a reminder here are a few before pictures of our family room.  It was time for a change!  We outgrew the look of the movie posters and wanted a space that mixed well with the rest of the house.  

I decided to keep the room pretty neutral.  I also want to mention that I took pictures of the space on two different days.  Some of the decor may have changed in pictures!

We love our big leather sectional.  It's so comfortable.  We take naps here and gather as a family to watch movies in the evenings.  To make it more relaxing, I added a few over-sized pillows.  

This room feels stylish, yet functional for my family.

In hindsight, I probably should have concealed the cords.  Oh well, real life, friends!!

A small side table for drinks.

The gallery wall is one of my favorites!  The ceramic bells were a last minute Target find.  They just spoke to me.  I love the organic feel they add to the space.  I'm so glad I was able to incorporate them in the room.

A wall hook for extra throw blankets.

I would love to hear what you think!  Please take some time to check out the other One Room Challenge reveals by following this link--  Thank you so much for reading.  If you're interested, I'll update this post with a source list.