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May 2017

Reviews, Uncategorized

Once Again variety of Gourmet Nut Butters Review

IMG_7339“Once Again We Spread Integrity “ is a pretty interesting slogan.

I have to say I was very impressed with the nut butter spreads by Once Again: Almond, Cashew, Sunflower, and Peanut Butter. I was given the opportunity to try each flavor in exchange for my honest feedback. Naturally I jumped at the opportunity because I have a picky little eater at home and I am picky about what he consumes. One of the few items on his menu is peanut butter. I couldn’t resist this packaging, I am always on the hunt for healthy versions of food for my little picky eater and this one hits the spot. I received my package from Once Again, and carefully examined the organic nut butter spreads. I was delighted by the ingredients and lack of the bad fillers!

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The first thing that caught my eye was the adorable raccoon as their mascot, I had to think what in the world do raccoons have to do with this company. The curiosity inside me drove me to their website, I was on a mission to find out what the raccoon represented and I am so glad I did.
The raccoons were orphans that grew up in the factory. Instead of the Once Again family getting rid of the little ones they adopted them and basically took care of them until they were ready to be released in to the forest. I thought that was a beautiful story, considering all the stories you hear lately, about animals with unfortunate outcomes. This may be why most of their products are Vegan as well!
This intrigued me to do more research about the company, just look at their Mission Statement:

Mission Statement
Once Again is a democratically operated employee-owned workplace. We pride ourselves in providing the health-conscious consumers with products of superior quality and integrity. Located in a small rural community, we are dedicated to supporting organic and sustainable farming practices. We are proud to offer a healthier alternative, where every customer matters.
Membership
National Honey Bee Awareness Day
Northeast Organic Farming Association of New York
Domestic Fair Trade Association
Organic Trade Association
American Peanut Council
National Cooperative Business Association
National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO)
Private Label Manufacturers Association

Now this is the type of businesses worth supporting. Not only are their standards highly impressive but the fact that they take pride in their product makes it more valuable than currency.

Another key factor that was impressive is the company is employee owned. I think it is absolutely great to find companies that actually abide by their stated standards. I also really find employee owned businesses have a tendency to take more pride in their products. This is great news for the consumer.

*The employee-owners meet on a regular basis. All employee-owners have a vote on how the company is managed, and we govern ourselves. Each person gets one vote. Our company meetings are held to address the following: company policies, operational issues, and financial strategies. Committees are also formed to help resolve issues, which are subject to a final company vote (1 person = 1 vote). We have at least 3 employee-owners sitting on our Board of Directors.* 

Overall the Product has a great back story and impressive accomplishments. Considering the nut butter spreads all have great selling points. All of the nut butters are natural, organic, and are non GMO verified. None of this seemed to effect the flavor, I found it to be very tasty with a balance peanut flavored. The only thing I think might be a problem for some recipes is the consistency, it is bit looser than preferred/recommended. I would still consider it better than average for the taste and freshness. Another great feature on the site is the extensive ideas/recipes to use the nut spreads in. There are several recipes for ideas on how to incorporate nut butter Spreads into your everyday lifestyle, so I would definitely recommend checking out the website.

IMG_7386My favorite recipe so far is the Coconut Cashew Chicken Satays: My husband’s palette was very pleased so making this a recipe a keeper.

 

 

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I also experimented with a smoothie recipe Superfood Green Smoothie. I didn’t have all the ingredients but it still came out yummy, especially since I’ve been obsessed with avocados.

 

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I haven’t had much luck with my little one exploring with the recipes but I did have luck with him trying different sandwiches over his boring peanut butter request.

 

 

 

Of course he hasn’t met a dessert he didn’t like.  I was able to use a recipe from a friend to try and my household was very impressed.

IMG_1811http://www.skinnytaste.com/3-ingredient-almond-butter-cookies/

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So run over to their website, look around, maybe pick out a recipe or 4 and pick up some nut butters! You cannot go wrong with any of them! Happy Eating!

 

Family, Las Vegas Kids, Las Vegas Moms, Things To Do, Tips and Tricks, Travel

Tips for Creating a Great Summer Bucket List

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Summer is almost here! The last day of school for most of Las Vegas is June 8th and it’s time to start thinking about how you’re going to keep the kiddos entertained all summer! You don’t want summer to pass you by without having some fun!

Creating a summer bucket list can help!  Since the summer of 2010 we’ve been putting together a family summer bucket list and we look forward to it every year.  What exactly is a summer bucket list? It’s just an awesome way to have an intentionally fun summer with your family and make some great memories! The list doesn’t have to be big or filled with expensive outings to be fun.  Just think of some things you all can do together as a family in the summer, write it down, then go have fun! 

Here are a few tips that have worked for us (through a bit of trial and error) on creating a fun and successful summer bucket list that everyone can enjoy.  

  • Get the whole family involved.  Everyone will be more excited if they have a say in the list, so we make sure to talk about it together. Dinnertime or driving in the car work great.  Kids will come up with some pretty far fetched activities sometimes, so it’s good to give them boundaries and suggestions as to what kinds of activities you can/prefer to do, especially if this is your first time putting the list together.  The key is to get input from everyone and although not every activity will make the cut, they’ll be happy to have had a say in it and will be super excited when it’s time to do their activity!the_emerics_san_diego_california_ensenada_mexico_family_vacation-5
  • Include traditions.  Most of our traditions became traditions purely unintentionally, but now that we have them we are intentional about keeping them.  We make sure to include them each year in our bucket list and look forward to them each summer.  I’m sure you probably have summer traditions yourself already and just didn’t realize it.  Things like, BBQing with friends, watching fireworks, swimming parties, these may all be things you may do each year that can easily be incorporated into your family’s summer bucket list.

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  • Limit your list.  We found that keeping the list to about 10-12 activities is much more realistic than trying to include 20+ things.  Putting too much on your list can get stressful and pricey.  Your list should be about having fun together, not just doing stuff!DSCF8012
  • Don’t be too ambitious.  Every day doesn’t have to be jam packed with activities and weekends don’t have to be spent at a theme park or away from home for it to be fun and memorable.   Kids just want to spend time with you.  Your summer bucket list doesn’t need to be super elaborate or expensive.  This is especially true for younger kiddos.  Some of our fun and simple activities have included: going out for frozen yogurt, bike riding, geocaching, and watching the sunset. Need some ideas? Check out sites like Groupon and Living Social for great deals on fun things to do, like acrades, mini golf, bowling, go kart racing, laser tag, paintball, etc! 

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  • Display your list.  static1.squarespaceOnce you have your activities all picked out, make sure to display the list in a place where it can always be seen.  The last thing you want to do is create all this excitement and then forget about it. Believe me, if you put your list in a spot where the kids can see it everyday, they won’t let you forget about it! Through the years we’ve put it at the bottom of the staircase, on the fridge, and on a banner across the kitchen window. Bonus tip: Get the kiddos involved in creating a fun way to display your list 😉
  • Plan.  Once we have the list ready and displayed, it’s time to set a plan in motion.  Depending on your list, this could require lots of planning or little planning.  Our summer bucket list usually consists of smaller activities (frozen yogurt, water park, hiking, water balloon fights) with 1-2 big ones, such as a trip to the beach or family vacation.  Obviously, planning a trip will require a lot more planning, such as hotel stays, flights, rental car, etc. and most likely you’ll have your dates set for that. But I even find it helpful to at least pencil in the smaller events, just so that they are on the calendar and ready to go! 
  • Document.  Now that you’ve put some effort into creating and displaying your list, you have to go out and do all those fun things!  And, don’t forget to document along the way.  Whether you use a professional camera, a point and shoot, or just your iPhone, it’s important to snap a few photos for posterity’s sake.  We tend to use all 3! Here are a few ideas on places to document your summer: personal blog, special hashtag on instagram (ours will be #emericsummer2017), facebook album, scrapbook, chatbooks, or even a yearly calendar.  There are lots of options!  Whatever you choose, it’ll be great to look back at the end of the summer and relive all the cool things you did!

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So what are you waiting for? Grab the kiddos and start thinking of ideas for your summer bucket list! Your family will look forward to all the big & little adventures you’ll have throughout the summer.  Let’s make this summer your best one yet! 

Feel free to check out our summer bucket lists from the past 2 years to get ideas and inspiration for your own – 2016 and 2015

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Current Events, Family, Kid-Friendly, Reviews, Tips and Tricks, Uncategorized, Vegas Dads

May the Fourth be with YOU

 

starwars-featIs officially Star Wars Day as a day to celebrate Star Wars which was created by George Lucas. It is observed by fans young and old. Fans celebrate the day by re-watching the world-famous franchises movies or reading the comics.
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The date was chosen for the easy pun on the catchphrase May the Force be with you. In the movies the phrase is used to wish an individual good luck and that they would have favor with The Force.Although this is not an official holiday it is still celebrated by many Star Wars fans across the world and who can blame them.

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Even our family has grown to love the many adventures and wise words encouraged by the films.

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 Thanks to Legos my five year old loves everything Star Wars.  If you haven’t I definitely recommend visiting the Lego Star Wars page for some awesome content. 

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The franchise was launched back in 1977 with Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope, and quickly became a worldwide phenomenon branching out to release books, a television series, video games and comics.*

If your ever curious on what is The Best Way to Watch All The Star Wars Movies.  I definitley recommend reading this article to help you decide.

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1. Star Wars: Episode I – The Phantom Menace (1999)
2. Star Wars: Episode II – Attack of the Clones (2002)
3. Star Wars: Episode III – Revenge of the Sith (2005)
4. Untitled Han Solo Star Wars Anthology Film (2018)
5. Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016)
6. Star Wars: Episode IV – A New Hope (1977)
7. Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back (1980)
8. Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi (1983)
9. Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens (2015)
10. Star Wars: Episode VIII – The Last Jedi (coming in December 2017)
11. Star Wars: Episode XI – (coming in May 2019)

In celebration of May the Fourth, I purchased my son his first AT-AT. I did a lot of research and found Revell made some affordable Star Wars Kits.  At first I was discouraged by the age recommendation.  I decided to purchase it anyways with the intent of helping my son build the kits.  I am so glad I purchased the Kit. It was very easy to build and the instructions and quality of the product was great.  I plan on buying more kits to build with together with my son.

 

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Please feel free to share your Star Wars Celebration. We would love to hear how you and your family celebrated the day. May the Force Always Be with You!

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Events, GIVEAWAY, Kid-Friendly, Las Vegas Kids, Las Vegas Moms, Live Like a Local, Things To Do for FREE, Uncategorized

{CLOSED} Don’t miss out on your FREE COMIC BOOK this May 6th!Featured

 

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Mark your calendar for May 6th its Free Comic Book Day. Every year participating comic book stores give away specially printed copies of comic books. The Industry comes together to give away free Comics and encourage fans, both old and new to flock to the best place in the comic book community: This is definitely a great tradition to start with your little one. 

FIND A SHOP

Comic-ImageDon’t forget to visit your local comic book shop May 6th for your FREE COMIC!