Apr 20, 2014

REVIEW: Fiber Love Soft Baked Fiber Bars

Digestive health, regulating bowls, and constipation are concerns that each and everyone of us probably have but don't tend to talk about. In fact, it's a bit embarrassing discussing how things are functioning below even though it's a fact of life. It happens to the best of us. At one point or another it's been an issue that we've all had to deal with. There are many everyday factors that can affect how we operate including stress and what we choose to eat. Let's face it, every human being makes a number 2 and sometimes with need a little fuel to light the fire! That's where good ol' fiber comes in to play. It's time to get away from the prepared and processed foods, choosing healthier options to make our body smile from the inside out.

Fiber Love bars are a creation of Gnu Foods which was founded back in 2004 by a group of fiber lovin' fans. Today their purpose is to deliver adventure and feel good flavor to make you feel great all over, all the time. You can call this "nutrition with a new vision." Eating healthy and taking care of our bodies doesn't have to be a chore and it sure doesn't have to be boring either. These bars offer a blissful escape from the tiresome routine and will change how you incorporate fiber into your diet. Fiber helps regulate your digestive system, cleanse your body of toxins, and even lowers cholesterol. It's a very important component and Fiber Love bars offer a delectable option to maintain all of these things with ease.

You can find Fiber Love bars in a variety of mouth watering flavors including Orange Cranberry, Carrot Cake, Blueberry Cobbler and many more. They have also just released two flavor additions to the Fiber Love family, Coconut Macaroon and Apple Cobbler. I haven't had the chance to taste them all just yet but I can tell you first hand that the Chocolate Brownie is just as good as it sounds! These bars are baked, chewy, and full of deliciousness. Not only is their packaging fun and spunky but the product within is just as pleasing. I like that they offer a balanced mixture of fruity flavors along with sweet and savory. It's always exciting to find a fiber bar that actually has good flavor and texture to it. Plus there are no artificial ingredients or added sugars. Farewell empty calories!

Since Fiber Love bars provide nearly 50% of the daily fiber you need, this makes them the ideal treat at home or on the go. As a busy mom I don't always ever have time to pay attention to everything I am eating throughout the day. I am almost positive that I am not getting the recommended amount of fiber on a daily basis. I have never been a big vegetable person and eating salads gets awfully boring. I'd rather get my dose of fiber by eating a Fiber Love bar because I feel like I am having a dessert instead of a healthy snack! The soft baked cookie like texture makes them more of a treat. With all of the flavor choices I can try something new each day while nurturing my digestive system in the process.

You can find more information on Fiber Love bars by visit their website and connecting with the brand through social media. Follow along on Facebook, Twitter, and even Instagram. Share your favorite Fiber Love Bar or connect with other fans to see which they are snacking on.

Already a fan of Fiber Love bars? Let me know your favorite flavor below!

Disclosure: I was provided with samples from Fiber Love to facilitate this review. However, all opinions are my own!

Apr 18, 2014

Experience Yogurt Perfection With Liberté Yogurt #TeamLiberte

Disclosure: The information and prize pack have been provided by Liberte Yogurt through Platefull Co-Op.

Aside from my baking obsession I have been making a conscious effort to eat healthier snacks lately. I've stopped buying potato chips and sugary treats to eliminate all temptation! With all of that bad stuff out of the house I have found myself eating more fresh fruit, veggies, and yogurt. During my transition I was introduced to a new brand of yogurt that I had never tried before. As part of the General Mills family, Liberté embodies all things that nature has to offer. Liberté Méditerranée uses only the finest ingredients and nothing more – from whole milk and cream to live, active cultures and bold, real fruit. They also refrain from adding gelatin, sugar substitutes or preservatives. From taste alone you can tell the difference between Liberté and other brands. It's delicious, creamy, and rich in flavor. It's also a safe product that the whole family can enjoy. 

My favorite flavor turned out to be good old Coconut. It's plain and probably considered a classic flavor compared to their others but I could not eat it any faster. I love anything with coconut and this yogurt was absolutely incredible. It has the perfect amount of sweetness and a generous amount of fresh coconut flakes within. It's made with whole milk and recent studies suggest this may benefit more than just your taste buds. Check out this article for more information on that little tidbit. Normally I would add granola in my yogurt for texture and crunch but I didn't need anything extra in this. I haven't even had the chance to try the other flavors because I am stuck on the coconut. I guess I should probably venture out of my new comfort zone! 

You can find Liberté Méditerrané yogurt in two new flavors, Orange Mango and Lime. They are also featuring new packaging which is a cup like container that allows you to see the yogurt inside. I really like the updated look because it's eye catching and stands out when placed near other brands. You can even see the fruit on the bottom of the cup. I haven't been able to find the two new flavors yet but they should be available at Publix within the month of April. Keep your eyes peeled! Until then I suggest trying the Coconut because as you can see I am addicted. I can imagine that the other flavors are just as tasty. 

Have you tried Liberté Méditerrané yogurt before? I would love to know which flavors are your favorite!


Apr 16, 2014

Spring Has Sprung With Starbucks Spring Blend #Starbucks

Have you sprung into Spring yet? It's not too late! Spring is the season of new beginnings and transformations. Flowers are blooming, butterflies are hatching, and nature around us is coming to life. I love this time of year because it feels like a fresh start and also a chance to experience something new. This week I tried the seasonal Starbucks Spring Blend for the first time and was delighted by its rich flavor. This blend is remarkably balanced, combining exquisite beans from Latin America and East Africa. It reveals spirited, juicy notes and a medium body.  It pairs perfectly with buttery shortbread and early harvest berries. The balance of milk chocolate and sweet orange notes are the perfect complement to any Spring time celebration. Speaking of celebrations Spring also brings about one of my favorite holidays, Easter.

Starbucks Spring Blend has helped in keeping me awake for all of the important pre-Easter activities this week. I didn't even realize how fast the holiday was approaching until I saw a big sign on Toodie's classroom door about their Spring party on Thursday. I still have so much to do and the clock is ticking! There are a lot of things that must be done before Sunday arrives.We have to visit the Easter Bunny himself, put together Toodie's basket, decorate our eggs, and stuff the plastic ones full of candy for the hunt. Not to mention, I have to practice making bunny tracks out of cooking flour before the big day! Thank goodness for a delicious cup of coffee to keep me sane, focused, and energized while I attempt in getting all of these traditions done in timely manner.

Over the years our family has developed quite a few holiday traditions, from Christmas to Easter and even Valentine's Day. When Spring is in full bloom I begin shopping and searching for the perfect Easter basket ideas. This is one of my favorite traditions and I think it's because I am ultimately turning into my own mother. When I was little she always made my basket from start to finish, handpicking each goodie with love and care. Today I find myself doing the same with my own daughter, paying attention to each and every detail to make Easter morning special.

Easter is only a week away and I entered panic mode this morning. I wondered if I had enough time to do everything I needed to before the big day. Treat cups for school still needed to be stuffed and a big brown bag filled with surprises was hiding in the back of my closet. Not to mention I only got 4 hours of sleep last night thanks to Netflix documentries. I needed a miracle but knew a hot cup of coffee would do. The sweet aroma of Starbucks Spring Blend filled my living room as I prepared to tackle my Easter To Do List. First up, turning a mess into a masterpiece!

With a slight caffeine boost I was able to transform a scattered table covered with candy, toys, and goodies into a beautiful basket. Two cups later and I really did have some added pep to my step! There is something unique about the Spring Blend besides it being absolutely delightful. The milk chocolate and orange flavors are pleasantly delicious. They compliment one another and even poured over ice it has a distinct juicy taste to it. I really enjoyed it and am sad this is only available as a seasonal flavor because I like my coffee with a hint of citrus. I've tried several Starbuck's blends and this is one of my favorites.

I have mentioned before in my previous holiday posts that traditions are very important to myself and my family. When I became a mom I knew that I wanted to keep them alive and thriving. In addition to decorating eggs and putting together the perfect basket we also make sure to get a yearly picture with the Easter Bunny himself!  I remember Toodie's first visit was incredibly painful and filled with terrifying screams of terror. That was five years ago and today the experience is much more enjoyable for her, and the poor soul in the bunny suit. I can't imagine how many screaming children they hold on a daily basis. If anyone could use a Starbucks it's them! This afternoon we made a quick stop after school and made another Spring time memory to look back on.

Are you creating new memories this Spring or keeping up with Easter traditions? I suggest grabbing a bag of the seasonal Starbucks Spring Blend to complement your special moments before it's gone!  Be on the lookout for the fun floral packaging at your local grocery store and Starbucks locations.

Disclosure:  Starbucks & Modern Mom provided me with Starbucks samples in order to facilitate this review . I am not being compensated and all opinions are my own!

Apr 11, 2014

Spring Into Style At The Children's PLACE #PLACESpring

Disclosure: I was provided with a gift card to shop the Spring trends at the Children's PLACE. All opinions are my own!

Bright, fresh, and colorful styles have taken over The Children's PLACE this Spring. New looks and popular trends have popped up in preparation for the many sunny days ahead. Here in Florida we tend to have sunshine all year around but when Spring makes its presence known there is a different feel in the air. Flowers are blooming, birds are chirping, and light rain showers leave a refreshing crisp scent behind. This is the time of year that we enjoy spending our days outside appreciating the beautiful weather and observing nature around us. Spring cues a wardrobe change for little Miss Toodie. Out with the old, in with the new! Sweaters and long sleeved t-shirts are packed neatly in the drawer while tank tops and patterned skimmers take their place. The Children's PLACE is THE place to keep your child's wardrobe updated as the season changes. 

Last week I had the opportunity to shop the season's trends at a stand alone Children's PLACE store. Usually I do my shopping at the mall but my mom had told me about a store in our area that was twice the size and had a huge selection. This sparked my interest so we decided to make a day of it and get some new threads for Toodie. Right now she is growing like a weed, faster than ever. I cleaned out her closet last week and had to remove almost half of her clothing! Nothing seems to fit anymore and afterwards there weren't very many fun outfits leftover for Spring time.

After an hour of shopping I left with a big bag of fashionable clothing, accessories, and shoes to spruce up that empty closet. I even earned myself another reward certificate from their My Place Rewards program. Registration is free and you can earn 5 points for every $1 you spend in store or online. It adds up quick and you can even keep track of your purchases and points on your phone. Every Children's PLACE shopper should have it!

Naturally, I gravitate towards anything pink when I walk into the store. I immediately noticed a huge rack filled with rompers and sundresses. Living in Florida there isn't much of a noticeable season change but if one thing remains the same it's the heat. It can be brutal here which is why the Palm Tree Knot Romper is the first thing I grabbed! It's soft, light, and a loose fit. It's bright and covered in a splash of colors including the scattered hot pink palm trees. Rompers are convenient for those "get up and go" kind of days.

I believe the shoes pictured below are an updated version of their gladiator sandals. They don't seem to be up on the website yet but you can find them in stores with the other girl's shoes. I don't always jump to buy colored sandals because it's so much easier to match white or clear with any outfit. These were too cute to pass up though. They're also the exact color match to the shade of pink used in the tops and bottoms. 

COLORFUL Skimmer Shorts are IN for Spring! I think I have almost purchased every single color in these adorable little shorts. They fit Toodie perfectly and the material is super soft. They have the nifty adjustable waste bands so you can make them tighter or looser as your child grows. You can find them in solid colors and even patterns. I like the solid colors because you can pair them with any of the graphic or embellished shirts they have. They're nice and stretchy which makes them comfortable for play.

Check out the detail on the sparkly Shine Tank Top I matched with her bright orange skimmers. I've always been a sucker for their embellished tops with rhinestones, sequins, and sparkle. It grabbed a lot of attention when I dropped her off at school today. I think her teacher secretly wants one in her own size!

As far as accessories go I picked up this Flower Cowgirl Hat which has to be one of the cutest I have seen! Grandma said it was a "must have" so there was no way I was leaving without it in my bag. It will be great for beach and the warmer weather. The vibrant flowers make it easy to match with almost every outfit I picked out. I can tell it's going to get a lot of use during the Spring & Summer.

I also found a Jelly Satchel bag that came in four different colors. Of course, I got the pink! Toodie has been using it to hold her favorite sunglasses, iPod, and bracelets.

You can check out The Children's PLACE Spring 2014 Look book here.  Follow along on Twitter and Facebook for promotions, sales, and the heads up on the newest trends. You can even find them on Instagram. Tag your child's favorite Spring looks with #PLACESpring to join in on the fun!

Apr 10, 2014

No Sort? No Problem With Purex No Sort For Colors Laundry Detergent + GIVEAWAY

To do this day laundry remains one of the most monotonous and not so popular household chores. Don't get me wrong, there are many other things that I enjoy doing less around here. These include dusting, cleaning out globs of hair from the drain, and scrubbing dog vomit out of the living room carpet. I suppose it really could be worse. I used to actually take pleasure in doing laundry when I could get by with one load a week. Since I became a mommy this number changed drastically and that one load increased to 3 or 4 for the past 5 years. 

With all of this laundry experience under my belt you would think I would be more organized when it came to sorting and organizing each load. The truth is I never sort my colors. I never really thought to either. Whites go with whites, colors go with colors, and blacks go with blacks. I thought those were the basics of Laundry 101. I guess that explains why some of my blue tops have a purple tint to them. While I don't exactly plan on taking any extra time to sift and sort my laundry in the future, I do have help from Purex to ensure that my colors remain true to hue in one step.

Thanks to the latest laundry innovation by Purex I can simplify my laundry without worrying about sorting and color bleeding. The new Purex® No Sort for Colors detergent features a breakthrough Anti-Color-Transfer Technology which traps loose dyes in the wash and reduces color bleeding accidents. You may not know that color bleeding is even happening in your load until the clothing has gone through the drying cycle. Your typical accident occurs when dyes bleed out of fibers and deposit onto other garments. Purex® No Sort for Colors prevents this and keeps your clothing bright. No sort? No problem! Purex has got your covered.

To celebrate the release of the NEW Purex® No Sort for Colors detergent, the Purex brand will be hosting a sweepstakes. One grand prize winner will receive $1,000 AND  a year supply of detergent.  Also, 100 2nd place winners will receive a coupon for free Purex® No Sort for Colors detergent. You can enter here!

For another chance to win your own bottle enter through the rafflecopter form below. One winner will be chosen and receive (3) FREE product coupons redeemable for a bottle of Purex® No Sort for Colors detergent.

Disclosure:  The Purex® Brand provided me with a sample of the  Purex® No Sort For Colors Laundry Detergent in exchange for a product review. However, all the opinions expressed here are my own.

Apr 9, 2014

Pillsbury Bake-Off: Malted Milk Ball Peanut Butter Cream Squares #BakeOff #PlatefullCoOp

Disclosure: The information and samples have been provided by Pillsbury through Platefull Co-Op.

Baking sweets and treats is one of my many guilty pleasures. Whether it's cookies or cakes I am always in the kitchen whipping up some sort of dessert. Do you know anyone who is passionate about cooking and baking too? If so, their creativity in the kitchen could land them a spot to compete for $1 million and other prizes in the 47th Pillsbury Bake-Off® Contest! Their original recipes may be submitted online at www.BakeOff.com now through May 8, 2014. The Bake-Off® Kitchens will evaluate all eligible entries and choose the top 100 recipes to compete at the 47th Pillsbury Bake-Off® Contest Finals at the Omni Nashville Hotel on November 3, 2014.

For added inspiration Platefull Co-Op sent me a big box of baking and cookie goodies which included the 100 winning recipes from last year's bake-off contest. All of these delicious and unique recipes competed for the $1 million prize. While only one of them took home the big bucks, they are all winners in my book! The Loaded Potato Pinwheels took the win and look just as tasty as they sound. Flipping through the book gave me a lot of my own ideas and I am hoping to have my own creation to submit into the contest this year. 

Until then I could not resist re-creating one of the winning recipes from last year's contest. Naturally, I gravitated right towards the dessert section of the book and had to make something to satisfy my sweet tooth. The Malted Milk Ball Peanut Butter Cream Squares were calling my name. It combines two of my favorite things, peanut butter and malted milk balls. It's sweet. It's salty. It's creamy. It's everything you want in a dessert. Not to mention, it's extremely rich and indulgent. I can see why it was a winner. This has to be one of the best things I have ever made in the kitchen!

  • 1 roll Pillsbury® refrigerated peanut butter cookie dough 
  • 1 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 can Pillsbury® Creamy Supreme Vanilla Flavored Frosting
  • 2 cups Jif® Creamy Peanut Butter
  • 1 jar (7 oz) marshmallow creme
  • 2 cups coarsely chopped malted milk balls 
  • 1/2 Smucker's® Sundae Chocolate Flavored Syrup 
  1. Heat oven to 350° F. Spray 13x9 inch pan with Crisco® Original No-Stick Cooking Spray. Break up cookie dough and press evenly in bottom of pan. Bake 15-20 minutes or until golden brown. Cool completely, about 30 minutes.
  2. In medium bowl, beat whipping cream with electric mixer on high speed until soft peaks form.
  3. In large bowl, beat frosting and peanut butter with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Carefully fold whipped cream, marshmallow creme and 1 1/2 cups of the malted milk balls into peanut butter mixture. Spoon and spread mixture over cooled cookie crust. Refrigerate 2 hours or until cream layer is set. Cut into 6 rows by 4.
  4. To serve, place cream squares on dessert plates. Drizzle each with 1 teaspoon of the chocolate-flavored syrup. Sprinkle with remaining chopped malted milk balls. Store covered in refrigerator. 

Do you have a yummy recipe you plan on submitting into the Pillsbury Bake-Off® Contest?

Apr 3, 2014

New Fiber One Caramel Sea Salt 90 Calorie Snack Bars #Fiber1atTarget #PlatefullCoOP

Disclosure: The information and samples have been provided by General Mills through Platefull Co-Op. 

Looking for a tasty way to get essential fiber in your daily routine? Fiber one 90 Calorie Caramel Sea Salt Bars give you a delicious way to indulge without the guilt! Satisfyingly sweet and savory, these bars are a flavorful snack to feel good about. Including fiber in your diet is very important. It keeps your digestive system on track and also helps achieve a healthy weight. 9 out of 10 Americans do not even get the recommended amount of fiber in their diet. No, this doesn't mean you have to eat salads and beans for every meal. Fiber One has stepped in and created a full line of  savory products to help you get your daily dose. I guarantee they taste better than a bowl of leafy greens too!

If you have hard time getting fiber into your child's diet try packing these in their lunches. They look and taste like brownies so they will never know they are actually eating something healthy. I give a Fiber One bar to Toodie once or twice a week to help maintain her fiber intake. They worked wonders last year when we were struggling with constipation issues. You may not think such a small snack bar would make a difference but it truly does. In addition to the Caramel Sea Salt flavor they also come in  Chocolate Fudge Brownie, Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownie, Chocolate Chip Cookie, and Lemon. 

While the Lemon Bars are Toodie's favorite I can't get enough of the Caramel Sea Salt! They are the perfect combination of sweet, salty, and chewy. The caramel drizzle on top ties in all of the flavors together without being overpowering. It tastes just like you are biting into a creamy caramel chew with a hint of sea salt. Sound like something you would enjoy? You can find the Caramel Sea Salt Bars exclusively at Target for a limited time. I would stock up while you can because I have a feeling these are going to go fast! 

For more information on Fiber One products visit their website and also follow along on Facebook.