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Friday, May 27, 2016

3 Of The World's Most Secluded Beaches

When the spring is not willing to show off that quickly, and the air temperature causes us to kink in a thick blanket, it is natural that we start to dream of holidays in warm countries. Since these thoughts do not stop so easily, you can definitely start planning an unforgettable trip somewhere far, exotic and warm. 

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If you would like it to be easier, get acquainted with these three human hands untouched beaches in the world which can be quite an excellent place for your quick getaway to chase the summer.

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1. Indonesian gem where time stops

Derawan archipelago’s name is not very familiar for bigger masses. No wonder - this, in Indonesian East Kalimantan province located piece of land, is mainly loved by experienced divers who came there to catch the wave of a lifetime. Moreover, there is another reason to go here: the very rich underwater fauna in Derawan, got this place into the world’s top best diving locations list.

Although the archipelago consists of 31 separate territories, the most convenient place to stay and feel the rhythm of the island is surely in Derawan.

Here you can stretch out on the powdery white sand and track giant green turtles, puffing ashore to lay their eggs, or dive in the Sulawesi Sea waters and see 460 different coral and 870 species of fish. Be warned - in a place like this, you will soon forget about the time passing by.

From Derawan you can also reach other surrounding islands - even quieter Maratua or not stinging jellyfish lake named Kakaban. To be fair, the airport is planned to be built in the archipelago soon, which will significantly facilitate communication. So the best time to visit this Indonesian pearl is now until it is not crowded by tourists from around the world.

3 Of The World's Most Secluded Beaches, island vacations, beach trips, beaches to visit


2. Strictly protected sprawling paradise in Europe

It is hard to believe that in the densely populated Europe is still possible to detect human hands unspoiled corners. One of them can be found in the Spanish region of Galicia, and we are talking about the Las Islas Cies archipelago.

To protect the environment, all the area was declared as a national park, from which no one can’t take away even the smallest and the slightest shells. Here you won’t find any permanent residents, and you also won’t find any garbage here as well - all waste has to leave with the person who brought that into the island.

It is not surprising that the strict restrictions hampered archipelago has maintained a pristine charm. In one of the islands, Monteagudo, the Rhodes beach was even selected as the most beautiful in the world.

Though luxury hotels won’t be easy to find here, fluffy white sands and the clear Atlantic Ocean redeems any inconvenience. When planning a trip it is important to remember that the number of visitors to Las Islas Cies is limited – barely 2,200 people a day can soak up the sunny shores in here.
The archipelago is most easily reached from the city of Vigo, located on the Spanish mainland. The small port town will season your trip with pure Spanish spices - fresh seafood and the best traditional local wine.

3 Of The World's Most Secluded Beaches, island vacations, beach trips, beaches to visit


3. Holidays at the most remote corners of the planet

Those who want to escape from all the noise of the world certainly will not be disappointed by choosing the Cook archipelago, regarded as one of the most isolated corners of the planet.
The 15 beautiful islands are scattered in the middle of the Pacific Ocean have not yet become popular among tourists, so there you won't meet obsessive-compulsive traders or fraudsters who are working their hardest to get your money away from you.

Home of the hidden treasures jewel - Rarotonga Island, invites not only with the snow-white beaches but steep cliffs and dense jungle. When traveling around the area visit some small fishing villages, where you can befriend local people and listen to their amazing stories.

Although such breathtaking areas don’t encourage you to develop further plans, and all that you wish for is to relax and enjoy the pleasures of the place, do not miss the chance to visit the Aitutaki. The second most-visited island is perfect for diving enthusiasts since its shores are surrounded by colorful coral reefs and hundreds of different species of fish. 


Moreover, not that far away you can also visit the infamous Bora Bora beaches which are also considered being one of the best in the world. There are also a lot of great hotels in Bora Bora too, so you can enjoy those best beaches in the world for a little bit more. But there you might need to deal with some tourists. 

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These photos and beautiful descriptions have me ready for our next trip to the Beach!  

Have you visited any secluded beaches like these?


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Thursday, May 26, 2016

Best Boating Lakes In Colorado




Summer is here - okay, well officially here as of Memorial Day weekend right?  As our kids get older we are finding more and more activities that we are excited to try here in Colorado.  Most of the time, Colorado is known for its mountains but you might be surprised to find out that there are a number of lakes and reservoirs that our a must visit as well.  Not only for the beauty of the water in our amazing state but also for some boating!!  I am always honest with you here, and here is a secret of mine - I have never been boating!  But like I said, we are looking forward to some new experiences with our kids as they get older and boating is one of them.  

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While researching all of these lakes I decided to list some of the best boating lakes in Colorado.  I have goals of taking the family out on these lakes to enjoy a day on the water and take in the amazing Colorado scenery.  


Best Boating Lakes In Colorado:

  • Chatfield Lake
  • Grand Lake
  • Lake Dillon
  • Blue Mesa Reservoir
  • Granby Lake
  • Boyd Lake
  • Cherry Creek Reservoir

These lakes are not only great for boating but perfect for family outings.  If you are in Colorado, you must add these sights to your list this summer.  Mountain views, fresh air and beautiful water.  

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Because the kids will not be in awe like us of the views we have to think of activities to do while on the lakes.  Here are a few that I know we will be adding to our agenda! 

Water Activities To Enjoy While Boating:


  • Swimming
  • Tubing
  • Fishing
  • Water Skiing 
  • Wake-boarding 
  • Exploring 
All I see here is fun for every age.  

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Now, we do not own a boat and have no experience on sailboats so what is our next step?  

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What is Discover Boating?

Discover Boating is a national, nonprofit program on behalf of the US recreational boating industry aimed to help people get on the water to experience the fun of boating. For those looking to get their feet wet, Discover Boating is an unbiased online resource packed with easy, interactive features on all things boating, including a boat selector tool, get on the water tab where you can find rentals, classes and charters, cost comparison tool, renting options, youth boating programs, education courses – even nautical lingo and how-to videos.

This is where we will start our planning, not only will the how-to videos and courses help a ton but we can find a boat to rent in our area with the help of Discover Boating tips.  

Time to get our boating planning on!!  

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Tell me what your day on the lake looks like in the comments below!



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Wednesday, May 25, 2016

H2OGO! Summertime Fun In The Sun + Triple Slider #Giveaway

Disclosure:  This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of H2OGO! for my participation with Mom It Forward Blogger Network campaign.



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If you have been following our family for long you know we live in Colorado, and if you know anything about Colorado weather we really never know when it will be hot enough to enjoy a water day.  But lucky for us this past weekend, we got a taste of summer!  Hello 80 degrees!!   The kids were melting so broke out our newest water toy - the H2OGO! Triple Slider!

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As the kids are getting older we are finding ourselves outside more often, they love it and so do we, especially when they are so worn out after a day in the backyard that they fall asleep early!  HA!!  Parenting win!!!!  When I received our H2OGO! Triple Slider and Jude and Teagan saw it, they started wishing for a water day immediately.  That day came on Saturday, finally.  We broke open the box and got to it!


H2OGO! Triple Slider Facts:

  • H2OGO! was the first line of water slides to feature a patent-pending SpeedRampTM, a tough, inflatable launch pad that creates a smooth landing (no more belly flop “ouch”!).
  • Single, double or triple slides available – kids can slide one at a time, or race their friends on the double or triple models
  • Wet drench pool at the end for a big splash finish
  • Fill with air pump
  • Connect a garden hose and go!
  • 18-feet long
  • Recommended for ages 5 to 12

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Even though an air pump is not required for use, I would recommend some sort of pump in order to make the set up easier.  Jeremy pumped up the slide and connected the garden hose and in less than 20 minutes we had a mini water park in the backyard!!  

This was both Jude and Teagan's first experience on a slide like this, took some teaching but they got it and LOVED it.  They played until the crazy Colorado weather took over and they were shivering.  Our lawn got a nice water and the kids had so much fun in the HOT summer weather.  Oh and for those of you wondering - yes, this wore them out - we had an early bedtime!!  Again, parenting win! 

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Teagan especially loved sunbathing in the drench pool at the end of the slide. Our sun baby for sure!  While this is a product for ages 5-12, Teagan loved playing in the sprinklers that shot over the slide and the drench pool.  She did try slide but it was a bit hard for her.  

Other H2OGO! Products:


Tether Ball Splash™
  • Backyard tether ball meets sprinkler spray ball for extra summer fun
  • Inflatable pole with a built-in water chamber for stability
  • Attaches to a standard garden hose
  • 79-inches tall
Color Wave™ Pool
  • Built-in LED lights around the pool’s edge change colors
  • Backyard fun day or night!
  •  LED flashlights and stencil sheet included
  • Extra-wide sidewalls for safety and durability
  • 147-gallon capacity
  •  Uses 4 C 1.5V batteries (not included)

Doodle Glow™ Pool

  • Doodle on the fluorescent floor with the included LED flashlights for fun, glow in the dark designs
  • Backyard fun day or night!
  • 2 LED flashlights and stencil sheet included
  •  Extra-wide sidewalls for safety and durability
  • 147-gallon capacity

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The kids had a great time.  I know that the H2OGO! Triple Slider will be a favorite this year and I am so excited to pull it out for Jude's birthday party in a few weeks!!  I am sure he and his friends will have a great time doing some slide racing! 

For more information about H2OGO! and the products offered, visit them on Facebook.


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Because we want to spread the #BackyardSummerFun we are hosting a giveaway for you to win your very own H2OGO! Triple Slider!  This is something that your kids will be so excited that you won!!    To enter, simply follow the rafflecopter form below!  Good luck!!


Rafflecopter form: 



What Backyard Summer Fun do you and your kids have planned for this summer?


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Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Slow Cooker Cheesy Ranch Chicken

Looking for a kid approved slow cooker meal?  This Cheesy Ranch Chicken is a must try!  Slow cookers are not just for those cold evenings - don't put that cooker away yet!!  I often think of a slow cooker as something to use in the winter but with our evenings filling up quickly this summer, I am finding some new recipes that the whole family is enjoying!

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Slow Cooker Cheesy Ranch Chicken


Free printable recipe here.



Ingredients:  

20 baby potatoes - I used dutch yellow
2 pounds boneless skinless chicken tenderloins 
2 cans cheddar soup
1 package dry ranch salad dressing mix
pasta - cooked as directed

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Directions:

1.  Start with the baby potatoes, layer them in the bottom of the slow cooker dish. 

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2.  Place chicken tenderloins on top of potatoes evenly.

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3.  Sprinkle ranch dressing mix over chicken.

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4.  Cover chicken and potatoes with cheddar soup.

5.  Cook on low for 7 hours or on high for 4 hours. 

6.  When ready to enjoy, prepare pasta as directed.  Top cooked pasta with chicken and potatoes.  Enjoy hot!

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This recipe was super easy to put together before we headed out for work and the kids loved the cheesy sauce.  I did not taste as much ranch flavor as I thought I would - next time I might add another half package of ranch dressing mix.  


I love finding super easy slow cooker meals like this.  

Share your favorite slow cooker meal in the comments below!  



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Monday, May 23, 2016

Kindergartner in the House!!

It is true - we have a kindergartner in the house now.  Over the weekend, Jude "graduated" from Pre-Kindergarten.  His school had a cute ceremony that included a diploma certificate and a tassel.  He was so proud of himself and super excited for next year.  


Jude has had the same preschool teacher for the last 3 years, next year will be a huge change for him.  Not only will he be going all day but he will not be in the same room with the same teacher.  Crazy!  But good changes for sure.  Honestly, he is more excited to be able to bring his lunch to school than anything else!  So funny.  


Jude had grown so much over the last year both physically and educationally.  I am so glad we decided to delay kindergarten for a year.  He will be walking into Kindergarten reading, full of confidence and more in control of his body and mind.  

And now, we celebrate summer!!!  School is out!!


Did you have any big school ceremonies for the end of the school year for your kids?

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Friday, May 20, 2016

Disney’s Alice Through the Looking Glass


Who is excited for Disney's new movie?  We sure are!  In one week Alice Through the Looking Glass will be in the theaters for all of us to enjoy.  I am a big fan of Johnny Depp and so is Jeremy, not to mention anything done by Tim Burton. We are kinda giddy over this release!! We have decided to go on a double date with our besties and enjoy this colorful, fun and eccentric look at Alice's adventures.
If you are on the fence about going taking time to go to the movies, watch the trailer!  You will be hooked and ready for some fun!!  Release date is on May 27, 2016!  Begin your countdown. 





Disney’s “Alice Through the Looking Glass:


In Disney’s “Alice Through the Looking Glass,” an all-new spectacular adventure featuring the unforgettable characters from Lewis Carroll’s beloved stories, Alice returns to the whimsical world of Underland and travels back in time to save the Mad Hatter. Directed by James Bobin, who brings his own unique vision to the spectacular world Tim Burton created on screen in 2010 with “Alice in Wonderland,” the film is written by Linda Woolverton based on characters created by Lewis Carroll and produced by Joe Roth, Suzanne Todd and Jennifer Todd and Tim Burton with John G. Scotti serving as executive producer. “Alice Through the Looking Glass” reunites the all-star cast from the worldwide blockbuster phenomenon, including: Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Mia Wasikowska and Helena Bonham Carter along with the voices of Alan Rickman, Stephen Fry, Michael Sheen and Timothy Spall. We are also introduced to several new characters: Zanik Hightopp (Rhys Ifans), the Mad Hatter’s father and Time himself (Sacha Baron Cohen), a peculiar creature who is part human, part clock.

Alice Kingsleigh (Wasikowska) has spent the past few years following in her father’s footsteps and sailing the high seas. Upon her return to London, she comes across a magical looking glass and returns to the fantastical realm of Underland and her friends the White Rabbit (Sheen), Absolem (Rickman), the Cheshire Cat (Fry) and the Mad Hatter (Depp), who is not himself. The Hatter has lost his Muchness, so Mirana (Hathaway) sends Alice on a quest to borrow the Chronosphere, a metallic globe inside the chamber of the Grand Clock which powers all time. Returning to the past, she comes across friends – and enemies – at different points in their lives, and embarks on a perilous race to save the Hatter before time runs out. Presented in Digital 3D™, Real D 3D and IMAX® 3D, Disney’s “Alice Through the Looking Glass” opens in U.S. theaters on May 27, 2016.





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Will you be heading to the theater to see this movie soon?


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Thursday, May 19, 2016

Apricot Glazed Grilled Pork Chops

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


Finding dinner recipes that can be plated and on the table in less than 30 minutes can be difficult, especially when it also has to be a kid approved meal!  These Apricot Glazed Grilled Pork Chops are just that - quick preparation and full of flavors fit for the whole family.  

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Apricot Glazed Grilled Pork Chops


Free printable recipe here 

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When I first think about my shopping list for our upcoming meal plans I often start with the protein portion of a meal. Now that the rain has stopped and summer is on the horizon here in Colorado we are thinking all things grilled!  One of my go to protein options is Smithfield All Natural Fresh Pork.  


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Smithfield All Natural Pork Chops are naturally tender and juicy without added steroids, hormones or artificial ingredients - a product that I can serve to my family and feel confident the meal I am preparing is high quality but still super easy to prepare.  

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Ingredients:

1 package Smithfield All Natural Boneless Pork Chops - thawed
1/2 cup apricot preserves 
3 TBSP white wine vinegar
1 clove garlic - minced
1/4 cup white onion - minced
1/2 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp salt 
plus salt and pepper to taste

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Directions:

1.  Prepare and preheat grill on high heat for about 10 minutes. 

2.  While the grill is preheating begin preparing the chops by removing from package and placing on a plate.  Pat chops dry with paper towel and season both sides of the chops with salt and pepper. 

3.  Set pork chops aside and make glaze.  In a small mixing bowl combine apricot preserves, white wine vinegar, garlic, onion and salt and pepper.  Mix well.

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4. Reduce heat on grill to medium.  Place seasoned Smithfield All Natural Boneless Pork Chops on grill for about 5 minutes. 

5.  After 5 minutes flip pork chops and brush a layer of apricot glaze on the pork chops. 

6.  Cook for one minute and flip - brush a layer of apricot glaze on the pork chops.  Continue cooking for one minute on each side and flipping until all of the apricot glaze is gone.  

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7.  Pork chops should cook for about 10-12 minutes.  

8.  Remove glazed pork chops from grill and pair with rice and veggies for a fresh and wholesome meal!  Enjoy!!

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At first my kids were a little resistant when I told them there was "jelly" on the pork chops but once they tasted it the both at it up fast!  I love being able to prepare a great meal in less than 30 minutes that my whole family enjoys.  Great for those busy work days after Taekwondo and dance class.  

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Pick up your dinner for this week at your local Walmart.  You can find everything you need for this recipe in one stop!  Happy grilling!

To learn more about how Smithfield® provides quality pork and some great recipe inspiration, visit this site. You can also enter below to win a $100 Walmart gift card - recipes and gift cards! Win Win in my mind!



What is your favorite way to enjoy Pork?

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