Posts in Lifestyle
A fabulous treat that gets better with time
Peanut Butter Bars - a fabulous treat that gets better with time. #recipe #delish #chocolatetreats #nuttygoodness

Have you ever served yourself a treat to snack on while you read and forgotten about it while on your reading journey? That was my experience with this treat. I was having one of those days where I really needed some me time. I served myself a wonderfully generous portion of my personal take of Angela’s recipe and little did I know that I would end up with a fabulous melty treat as I let it sit for a little too long. I fell in love with this recipe. I hope you do as well.

Crust Recipe

1 Cup – Agave Nectar

2 Pinches of Salt

1 Tablespoon – Melted Coconut Oil

2 Tablespoons – Cocoa Powder

2 cups – Crispy Rice Cereal

1 Cup – Agave Nectar

*I like it sweet. I would recommend starting with 2 or 3 tablespoons and gradually increasing to taste.

Mix it together in a lined pan of your choice and freeze while you make the filling.

Peanut Butter Bars - Bars that get better with time. #delish #recipe #foodbloggers

Filling Recipe

¼ Cup – Melted Coconut Oil

1 Teaspoon – Vanilla Extract

¼ Cup – Agave Nectar

1 Cup – Peanut Butter

2 Pinches – Salt

To me there is nothing better than a treat that is both sweet and savory. Added salt fulfills my desire.

Once thoroughly mixed, remove crust from freezer and pour your filling over crust &, once again, freeze.

Chocolate Coating Recipe

1 Teaspoon – Coconut Oil

¾ Cup – Chocolate Chips

2 Pinches – Salt

A Handful – Roasted Peanuts

Melt coconut oil then add the chocolate chips. Stir frequently until creamy.

Pour over filling.

Add 2 pinches of salt.

Sprinkle a handful of roasted peanuts.

Swivel your pan to ensure that your peanuts adhere to the chocolate.

Freeze for at least an hour, then enjoy! While this treat gets better with time, it is amazing as it’s supposed to be enjoyed which is frozen.

If you end up making this recipe, or a variation of it, please let me know! I would love to see pictures or hear your thoughts about your creations.

How I celebrate Day of The Dead - A Magical Holiday
How I celebrate Day Of The Dead - a magical holiday. #lbloggers #dayofthedead #diadelosmuertos #cbloggers

When I was little, I remember going to the cemetery and hopping from grave to grave. We lived in Mexico then and things were very different. The pace was slower, we all knew each other, and town celebrations were frequent and merry. Honestly, I scarcely remember why we celebrated other than that we did so what seemed like every other Sunday in our town plaza—and, it was magical.

Visiting our town’s cemetery was not uncommon for us as taking care of our grandmother’s grave and those of our close relatives was part of our Sunday ritual. With that said, I regrettably do not remember celebrating El Dia De Los Muertos specifically as celebrating our ancestry was almost an every day occurrence.  

How I celebrate Day Of The Dead - a magical holiday. #lbloggers #dayofthedead #diadelosmuertos #cbloggers
How I celebrate Day Of The Dead - a magical holiday. #lbloggers #dayofthedead #diadelosmuertos #cbloggers

My nanny, whom I lovingly called Mama Manuela, was the one that I went with on most occasions. We would spend what seemed like hours in the cemetery cleaning, talking – to each other and to our relatives. While I remember being disciplined for jumping on the graves by family members, Mama Manuela encouraged it. She would tell me that our ancestors enjoyed the company and energy we brought, and that as long as we were being respectful while playing, which I think she meant as long as I did not destroy anything, we were okay.

How I celebrate Day Of The Dead - a magical holiday. #lbloggers #dayofthedead #diadelosmuertos #cbloggers

Until a few years ago, I had honestly forgotten to celebrate or even acknowledge the holiday. Once we moved to the United States, we no longer had graves to visit or random celebrations in the plaza. It was all very different, and assimilating became a major priority for us. Now I struggle to remember important Mexican holidays and tradition as well as the proper way to speak Spanish. I tend to lean closer to Spanglish most days, which I honestly find embarrassing. I grew up knowing the language fluidly, and now I struggle to have a conversation without taking long pauses while I think about the proper way to say something. It is these circumstances that make me truly appreciate whenever opportunities to learn more about and celebrate my heritage arise. And it is these circumstances that have led us to create our own traditions. Some of our current traditions include:

·        visiting the Springs Preserve the first weekend of November, as this is when they host a big Day of the Dead celebration

·        lighting candles in honor of our ancestors

·        reading a lovely book on the topic

·        sharing an enchanting evening with family

Spending time with my family is my favorite activity as we seem to have less and less free time for each other the older we get and because we tend to always share a delicious meal, compliments of my mom.

How I celebrate Day Of The Dead - a magical holiday. #lbloggers #dayofthedead #diadelosmuertos #cbloggers

Visiting the Springs Preserve is a lot of fun and something Ryan and I have been doing for the last couple of years. If you live or visit Las Vegas the first weekend of November, I highly recommend stopping by the if at all possible. They have taken this celebration to a whole new level. Not only do they invite the community to build altars in honor of anyone they would like to recognize – I’ve seen some dedicated to Selena, to events such as the local shooting that took place on October 1st , and of course to family members–but they also have a wonderful selection of activities for kids to take part in as well as traditional and nontraditional food for everyone to try. I am a huge fan of this event and try to always attend with Ryan.

 Before our first visit, Ryan knew about the holiday but did not really understand it. As time goes by I realize he is not in the minority and that is why I wanted to write a post on the topic.

The Day Of The Dead is a day where we celebrate our ancestors; their lives; their accomplishments; their personalities. To honor them we build altars dedicated to them and fill them with some of their favorite things—bread, drink, favorite dishes, candles, flowers, garments, jewelry, etc.—and then we celebrate. We celebrate their lives with the hope that they know they are cherished and not forgotten, and we celebrate life. Our festivities include singing, dancing, parades, creating our own drink and treats while leaving their altars up in their honor overnight, or until we are ready to take it down. It is quite a special event.

I love dressing up the day of. I’m not the best at creating the traditional sugar skull makeup but I have improved year over year. Do you celebrate Day Of The Dead? How do you try to keep some of your traditions alive?

Here are a few articles I think you’ll enjoy relating to the topic:

·        Pan De Muerto Recipe

·        Bringing home the dead – anatomy of an altar

·        Stunning sugar skull makeup

P.S. This post is not sponsored. I love the Springs Preserve try to support it as much as possible as I think they add a lot to our community.

Life lessons from my mom
Life lessons from my mom #lbloggers #cbloggers #fbloggers #lifelessons #funtimes

March is National Women’s History Month and so I thought it was due time to put fingers to keyboard and share a little bit about the most influential woman in my life, my mom. On a day to day basis I think about her at least three times a day. I think about what she would tell me about my outfit, because she always has something colorful to say. I think about how grateful I should be for being able to go and visit her at moment’s notice as we both live in the same state but somehow, I only manage to visit every other week. When I think about my failures I can also always count on my mom’s wisdom to bring me back to reality and see that life is not as bad as I am making it out to be, especially since there is always great food to eat – i.e. Kraft mac and cheese or chiles rellenos.

Life lessons from my mom #bloggers #pbloggers #lessonslearned #specialmoments
Lessons Learned From My Mom #lbloggers #fbloggers #cbloggers #lifelessons #nationalwomenshistory.jpg

A few more lessons from my mom:

If you get a C+, you are above average.

As much as I want to an A student, I’ve always been more of an mostly A’s, some B’s and an occasional C student. Those occasional C’s really hit me hard. I remember crying uncontrollably over getting a C+ in a biology class. In hind sight, I think my reaction was incredibly petty. My mom on the other hand, was so sweet and supportive. She held my hand – her signature move – and said, “My love, this class does not define you. On the up side, it does prove that you’re above average.” I did not laugh at the time, but thinking back, I can’t help but smile.

Being fashionable is relative.

In my teens I went through a phase where I wanted to look like a chola, then in my early 20s I went through a phase where I wanted to look like I lived in the 50’s. Through it all, she was supportive. She loved a lot of what I wore, but whenever I went overboard she would call me out. She appreciated my fashion choices as fashion is relative. If you wear it with confidence, it is sure to suit you.

It’s okay if you have a messy house.

Growing up, our home was rarely clean. Both mom and dad worked all day and the only time our home would see the broom would be during the weekend. It was an all hands on deck deal. It was not my favorite thing to do, but given that she was rarely hard on us about the state of the house we all pitched in.

Now that I’ve grown up, I realize that our home must have been such a mess as it got closer to the weekend. We, as kids, rarely picked up after ourselves and made great use of all the toys we had so I can just imagine how frustrating it must have been for my mom. She now tells me that she did not mind very much as it was symbolic of a happy family. I appreciate that very much, as it means we got away with a lot, but I do think having a messy home stressed her out a bit at times.

It’s okay if you aren’t currently fulfilled with your day job, just be grateful for it and work towards the job you want.

Most of my life, I have held jobs that pay the bills and so has my mom. While I am grateful that I can pay my bills, I do get down at times that I do not feel utterly fulfilled. If I am having an especially hard time, I’ll talk to her and of course she’ll make me feel better and advise to continue to be grateful for my day job. It is because of it that I can pursue my life’s ambition and that is awesome. I love her so much for giving me such reality checks as I desperately need them at times.  

Just let it out…you’ll feel better for it.

Need I say more?

What are some lessons you’ve learned from an influential lady in your life?

What a friendship bracelet means to me.
What a friendship bracelet means to me. #accessories #fbloggers #ontheblog #lbloggers #cbloggers

Do you remember the first token of friendship you ever received? I do not, however, I do remember handing out about eight little half “friend” hearts and wearing the other eight halves in a long necklace when I was around nine. It was quite the noisy little thing. I think that I had just discovered the meaning of that memento and was eager to take part. I think that the novelty of my discovery was the driving factor for my handing out so many little half hearts, that and not wanting anyone from my friendship group to feel left out.

These days I laugh at the thought of presenting any part of the friend heart to a friend. Mainly because I’m reminded of little me hence it is hard to present such a gift seriously. I also have not found many best friend hearts particularly appealing. There are a lot of friendship bracelets I do love though!

What a friendship bracelet means to me. #accessories #fbloggers #ontheblog #lbloggers #cbloggers
What a friendship bracelet means to me. #friendship #accessories #cbloggers #lbloggers #fbloggers

My collection of friendship bracelets is fun and unconventional – which is why I love each of them so dearly. Each is as different as the friend that gave it to me or with whom I purchased a matching set.  I am reminded of this friend whenever I see it or wear it and that is special. To me, friendship bracelet means, I care about you - you are not alone – if you ever need me, count on me – even from afar.

My one gripe about these bracelets is that I have mostly received them when a friend moves. I probably sound quite ungrateful. I am sorry if I do. The thing is I wish these were gifted more often, and not only to mark the end of something.  I guess I see them kind of like flowers. If they are only given when there is something to apologize about, you tend to associate a certain set of feelings towards such gifts—both good and bad.

What does a friendship bracelet mean to you? What is one of your favorite memories?  

The F Word: A post about Friendship
A Post About Friendship #lbloggers #cbloggers #friendshipmonth.jpg

Lily Pebbles, Liv Purvis and Valentine’s Day have definitely inspired this post. Notably, Lily, Liv and I are all in different phases of our lives hence I thought I would throw in my two cents on this very important topical topic.

I do not have very many close friends, and I prefer it that way. The friends I consider close are those I can open up to with little regard for the “walls” I have created. I have many walls. I think we all do. I think that coming to the realization that anyone who considers themselves an open book is in complete denial of the reality of their lives. Thankfully I do not hear anyone these days describing themselves as such. It may be a product of how narrow my friend group has become, or maybe a reaction to the evolution of social media, but I am grateful for this shift.

I tend to connect with my friends quite seldom but even so, I consider them close friends as I know I can count on them if ever the need arises. It is not ideal, but such is life. We all have so much going on - careers, relationships, etc. – it has just become our norm as of the last couple of years to meet less frequently. Truth be told, it all started once I met my husband. It was around this time that most of my close female friends found their significant others. We should have done a better job at integrating our loved ones with our friendship group, but hindsight is 20/20. Years later, I have come to the realization that these relationships are essential to keeping my sanity and to maintaining a healthy connection with my husband. The thing is, even though I would like to be able to connect with my husband at every level, it simply cannot happen. He is amazing at a lot of things, but girl talk is not one of them, and that is okay. I should not expect this of him as it is not fair to him.

A Post About Friendship #lbloggers #cbloggers #bbloggers #friendshipmonth.jpg
A Post About Friendship #relationships #lbloggers #fbloggers #bloggers #pbloggers.jpg

This was a recent revelation. It came out of a very long conversation with a good friend. We had not connected in many years. What was meant to be a short coffee meet up turned into a three hour long catch up. It was amazing. I knew it would be good to catch up I just did not expect to walk way feeling lighter and enlightened, if you will. As I write this I think I sound a bit corny, but it is true and it is a testament to how much I have missed such interactions.

Interpersonal conversation has always been one of my favorite things in life, more so than good sushi, which I think most of us can agree is saying a lot. So, why oh why have I let these important facets of life fall by the wayside? Life? Excuses? All of the above? I hope that this time next year, I can post something relating to how far we’ve come. Cheers to next year.

What is your take on friendships? What are some of your most memorable conversations with friends?  

Unqualified Blog
Life Lessons from Anna Faris #bookbloggers #unqualified #bookishpost #annafaris

Anna Faris inspires me to be a better person. I fell in love with her last year while watching Mom where she plays a single mother of two who works as a waitress and is a recovering alcoholic. She is hilarious, relatable and utterly charming in this role.

I am a bit embarrassed to say that I did not recognize her at first. I knew that I had seen her act in movies – no, not Scary Movie. (I really dislike spoof movies, especially those that make fun of my favorite genre of movies – romcoms.) I had to go on to IMBD to realize that I had seen her in Waiting and House Bunny. They are both brilliant comedies and I highly recommend them.

When I learned that she would be coming out with a book I immediately put it on my to-buy list. Shortly after, I was advised that she had a podcast! Of course, it is darling and totally binge-worthy. Truth be told, it is because I have been so enthralled with her podcast that I am just now getting to her book.

I purchased the audiobook. I don’t know about you but I tend to read reviews just before making the purchase if only to make sure that I am all in. I suppose I have commitment issues. As I was scrolling through the reviews, many quite positive of course, I read one that noted that if you listen to her podcast you can skip her book. I disagree. I find that her podcast is light and fun and mostly centered around her guest, whereas her book is intimate and personal. She touches on her insecurities in love and in her career and so much more. If you are in the mood for a sweet book about relationships and about growing up and getting older, and about Anna Faris, I think this is your book.

Here are a few particularly enlightening takeaways from Anna Faris’s book Unqualified. 

Unqualified Blog by Kaleidoscopes And Polka Dots #bookbloggers #unqualified #bookishpost #annafaris
Unqualified Advise by Anna Faris #bookbloggers #unqualified #bookishpost #annafaris.jpg
Unqualified Review by Kaleidoscopes And Polka Dots #bookbloggers #unqualified #bookishpost #annafaris

Protect Your Heart

This is Anna’s main relationship mantra. I think it is pretty perfect.

When you find that you are no longer happy in your relationship, especially when said relationship is a long-term relationship, it is often hard to figure out how to reignite it when it becomes stale or to let it go when nothing seems to work for you anymore. I think we have all had this experience at one point in time. Beginnings are beautifully hopeful and exciting, endings are grueling, painful, and often messy.

Protect your heart relates to doing what is best for you. Leaving a relationship will not be easy, it will be hurtful—but it will be temporary in the grand scheme of things. The goal is to get to a place where you are happy in life, with your heart, with your loved ones.

Do whatever is necessary for you to get to a good place, however, do not try to get “closure.” Achieving “closure” is akin to finding a unicorn. It does not happen – per Anna…and Me. To me, that final meeting that is supposed to bring closure to someone’s heart, only tends to bring about more pain because the dumper tends to be asked, “why?” To me, that just seems like cruel and unusual punishment on both accounts. I mean, who wants an itemized account of their shortcomings or to list off someone else’s?

Life Lessons From Anna Farris #lbloggers #bookbloggers #cbloggers #bookreview

Befriend Your “Rival”

Jealousy is evil and ever present.

I cannot imagine, nor do I really want to imagine, what it must be like to be in a relationship where your significant other is surrounded by beautiful talented young women, a few of which will act as a love interest on camera with your partner for the world to see. Anna had to deal with this scenario and she dealt with it by genuinely befriending her “rivals”. She explained that by genuinely caring for someone, you learn to let go of that all-consuming feeling. You simply cannot hate someone you love...and isn’t that the truth?

I think that I have always felt this way to some degree, I just never articulated it so succinctly. Whenever I am introduced to my male friends’ significant other, I always make it a point of introducing my self to them and I try to bring them into a conversation they could easily take part in – i.e. talk about their children or her work. These inevitably come up in conversation generally. Where I have issues is when it comes to accepting my husbands’ female friends. He works long hours and often gets home and works some more. He text messages and takes phone calls and it just seems like it is a never-ending rollercoaster. Most of his coworkers, including his manager, are young women. Sometimes I wish there were more opportunities to interact with them, so I could get over this unsettling feeling, alas that just does not happen and I just have to deal. One day I hope this can change and when that time comes, I hope to genuinely befriend my “rival”.

I put “rival” in quotations because they are not a true rival unless it is explicitly stated on their part – at least that is how I define a rival. Truth is, most “rivals” are evil figments of our imagination and if we let them they could become a real problem.

Embrace Your Age Number

I hate saying how old I am – even to my doctor. If asked, I often tell them that it should be in my file. I know that it is petty and unnecessary as you can not escape aging. Time is precious and getting older is a luxury, so why not embrace it? Well, to me it is less about how old I look and more about where I am in my career right now…which is not exactly where I want to be.

My definition of success has always revolved around being happy. My idea of being happy right now involves having a family and being able to work from home in a career that is rewarding and flexible. I work on my goal every day, so why do I still feel like a failure…I do not know…maybe because I am not there yet? I believe that I’ll get there. I just do not know when exactly and that is frustrating.

Anna asserts that by owning your age number you take the upper hand and help break down the stereotypes associated with that number. I love that idea. I want to take part in the movement, however…it will take a long time for me to get there. I started being evasive in my early 20’s and it just keeps getting harder as time goes by as old habits die hard.

How do you approach getting older? How have you learned to deal with the inevitable?

I hope you’ve enjoyed my post. Please let me know if you’ve read this book or plan on picking it up.