Friday, July 29, 2016

Quinoa & Feta Pizza

Happy Friday! We've been having the most wild thunder and lightening storms here in the Mid-West and I'm really loving it. I have never experienced storms like the ones that have been rolling through here. But of course, when the weather gets crazy and the days turn dark, I love to get in the kitchen and cook up some new recipes. 

Since it's still Summer, even when it's pouring out, the air is still super warm. I try to make dishes that don't take up too much oven time so the house doesn't heat up. I love experimenting with pizza crusts and doughs, and mixing flavors for that ultimate pizza. With that said, I've been cooking with quinoa a lot lately and adding it to everything. So instead of making a quinoa crusted pizza, I thought I'd just use it as a topping and have a Greek inspired pizza. And can I just say, it turned out so darn good! 

What you'll need:
  • Pizza crust, I used Pillsbury Thin Crust Pizza Crust
  • 1 cup cooked Quinoa
  • 1/2 cup feta cheese crumbles
  • 1 1/2 cups cut yellow pepper 
  • 1/4 cup Greek Dressing 
  • 1/2 fresh grated Parmesan cheese 
What you'll do:
  • In a mixing bowl, mix together cooked quinoa, feta cheese crumbles, yellow pepper cuts, and Greek dressing until all are combined.
  • Prepare pizza dough according to the directions *some ask you to precook the crust.
  • When the crust is ready, spread feta mix evenly over the crust.
  • Sprinkle the grated Parmesan cheese over the whole pizza.
  • Cook at 400 degrees for 10 minutes or until the top starts to brown.
  • Remove and let sit for 5 minutes. 
  • Joy!! 

How often do you cook with quinoa? Do you like experimenting with Pizza recipes? And if you try this recipe, I'd love to know how you liked it! 

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

PayPal Giveaway + Wednesday Linky!

Hi All! 

Thank you for stopping by, again, for another week of links! It's for sure my favorite time to find all the wonderful things everyone is up to this week. Connecting, networking, and inspiration are such a huge part of Linky parties! I hope you are getting good results from linking up with us! And don't forget to enter this month's Paypal Giveaway below!! Have a wonderful Wednesday!! 

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You are here: Home / Article Topics / Wordless Wednesday Bike Ride #WW Wordless Wednesday Bike Ride #WW July 19, 2016 by kristi maloney 8 Comments Email, RSS FollowShare Family bike rides are great for so many reasons. It’s burning calories, but I don’t even consider it exercise because it is so enjoyable. We are spending time together as a family, doing something that we all enjoy. Of course, once you have bikes and a bike rack, its free to ride! We hope to explore a few more bike paths before the summer is over. The North Central Bike Pathway 
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Basement Guest Bathroom Details

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #DesignedMega #CollectiveBias

You've heard it before... it's all in the details. And with my new home, I'm really trying to keep that in mind. When I bought this home, I was so excited to see what I could do with all this space. It's been a bit crazy around here over the last month, what with moving in and trying to get settled. So it makes me so darn happy to finally share with you one little room in my home that's finished- the basement guest bathroom, and all the little details.

I decided to go with an ocean and beach-themed space for the guest suite and bathroom because when you think basement, you think dark and scary. That is soooo not the vibe I wanted to give off when telling my guests that they'll be staying in the basement. And when family and friends come to visit and stay at my home, I'm hoping they'll be visiting because they're on vacation, and nothing screams VACAY like the ocean. 

For the towel details, I used my DIY Multipurpose Shell Garland to add a hint of the sea in a unique and fitting way. Subtle details like this help to pull any themed room together, while adding texture and life to a would-be boring space. I also printed my own photos from some of my favorite beach trips... because I believe my home is my art gallery. 

When designing the fixtures in this bathroom, we went with modern, clean and chrome. I've always been a fan of chrome fixtures and how everything goes with them. From a toilet paper roll holder and a magazine rack, to the shelves on the wall and shower fixtures, I think my guests will feel right at home in this clean, yet, relaxing space. And seeing as we'll start to have guests staying with us in just a couple of months, I thought it very important to start adding the finishing touches to this bathroom.

When getting a guest bathroom ready for visitors, there are a few things to have on hand- the details that make any guest's space perfect. Clean towels, extra soaps, and luffas are important to have at the ready for your guests. When it comes to toilet paper, I always go for the good stuff. Quilted Northern Ultra Soft & Strong® Mega Rolls has got to be my new favorite toilet paper, and let me tell you why. First (and most importantly), there is just so much of it! I mean, 4 in 1 mega rolls means 4x more sheets so I don't have to refill as often, which means my guests can use as much as they want. Second, it provides long-lasting comfort; you know, because no one likes to use sandpaper to wipe! Third, Quilted Northern looks great in my bathroom since it's always in style. It's the detail that makes a bathroom a bathroom. Oh and my favorite store, Target,  carries Quilted Northern Ultra Soft & Strong Mega Rolls, which means I can use the Target Subscription service to get what I need and save time getting it. Win, win, win, win, wins all around! 

Make sure to add this Target Cartwheel offer to save on your next purchase of Quilted Northern Ultra Soft & Strong Mega Rolls at Target! I know I can't go into a Target without my Cartwheel app and coupons, it's just so convenient. 

Also, enter now for a chance to WIN a $50 Target Gift Card! Yay! 

If you won, how would you use the gift card? Would you decorate a bathroom and stock it full of  Quilted Northern like me? Or would you use it to add details some other way? Have you tried the Mega Rolls yet? I'd love to know! 

Have a wonderful day & remember, it's all in the details! 

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Travel: The Lincoln Park Zoo, Chicago

So, last weekend, the family and I made our way into our new city and acted like total tourists! Chicago has soooo much to offer for families, it's almost overwhelming. Somedays, I just want to do everything in one day, but then remember I live here and can come do all the fun stuff whenever. We decided to visit the Lincoln Park Zoo, which is a free zoo just north of downtown, right on Lake Michigan. It was a very hot and humid day, so I think it's funny that the clouds in the photos make it look cold...... so not the case.

We picked the most perfect day to go to the zoo because I swear we saw every animal with no problem. I don't think I've ever been to a zoo before where all the animals made an appearance. The zoo itself is really nice. It's the most urban zoo I've ever been to, in that right outside the gates is a city. But it was super clean and green, offering all my kid's favorite animals and attractions. And for free, no less. I know I'll be going back with the kids just to have picnics on the grass and to ride the little train. It might be one of our new favorite spots. And just a tip, if you ever have a chance to make it to the Lincoln Park Zoo, unless you are staying within walking distance or take public transportation, you will have to pay for parking, so keep that in mind. 

Have a wonderful Monday!! 

Thursday, July 21, 2016

End of Summer 2-Night Getaway **GIVEAWAY**

Can you believe Summer break is already half way over?! It's time to start booking those end of Summer travel plans and getting in those last few weekend trips with the family. I've shared my experience and love for weekend getaways, and how much I enjoy giving away getaways to my readers! Now that Summer is underway, it's time for another 2-night stay giveaway. Who doesn't love to get out of town for a couple days?? Where would you go? 

Country Inn & Suites has locations across the US and Canada that are suitable for any type of traveler/vacationer. Now that I'm living in the Mid-West, I'm looking local for my family weekend getaways. Sure, I could go into Chicago, but that's just a bit too close for me. Recently, I've looked into visiting Minnesota. And the Country Inn & Suites by Carlson, Minneapolis West is just the place for me! Newly renovated, this hotel has everything I'm looking for in a hotel for my family. Plus, it's decor is amazing, modern and clean. I'm talking a complete revamp of this place that makes my body tingle with excitement. 

Country Inn & Suites by Carlson, Minneapolis West offers a homey, modern feeling, while still providing the highest quality of amenities, such as free high-speed Internet, fitness center, indoor swimming pool, complimentary cookies, huge breakfast, and lending library, among other things. And to be honest, the outdoor firepit area is what caught my eye - spending Summer evenings, relaxing with my family under the stars and talking around the fire is one of my favorite passtimes. 

More about the brand that makes me keep going back, no matter where I'm living: Country Inns & Suites By CarlsonSM is a leading upper midscale hotel brand with over 470 hotels in the United States, Canada, India and Latin America. The brand’s Be Our Guest service philosophy encourages employees to serve guests with the same kind and caring spirit given to friends when they are being hosted at home. I don't know about you, but when I'm staying in a hotel, whether for 2-nights or 2-weeks, I have pretty high expectations for how my family and I are treated. With the brand's Be Our Guest service philosophy, I've always been treated well and never had a problem with customer service. That's a huge deal for me when booking an overnight stay somewhere. 

Now for the GIVEAWAY!!! It's pretty Simple... you're entering for a two-night stay at any Country Inn & Suites location in the US & Canada!! There are 2 ways to enter, each worth 1 point! *you only need to do one to enter, but if you do both, the better your odds! *giveaway closes on 8/1/16
  1. Visit Country Inn & Suites by Carlson and check out all their locations! After, leave me a comment of where you would want to stay if you were to win! 
  2. Tweet this ----> "Giveaway for a FREE two-night stay at any Country Inns & Suites in US or CA. Check out details now #ad #countryinns" then leave me the link in the comments.

So that's it! Best of luck and happy Summer vacationing!!