Monday, August 27, 2012

Announcing the Canon T3 DSLR WINNER

The moment you guys have been waiting for is finally here! Because today we all are announcing the winner of the Canon T3 with 18-55 Lens!

Before the winner is announced I want to say thank you to all of the lovely bloggers that partnered with me to make this giveaway possible. You ladies are awesome, and you know it! I hope all of you know that too.
PhotobucketA Glimpse Inside

AND all of us are teaming up again for another giveaway in November!! Curious to what we're giving away?

 It starts with i and ends with more hints!

Make sure to stick around our blogs and Facebook pages so that you don't miss more information as the giveaway draws closer. Now for what you really want to know! The lucky winner of the Canon T3 with 18-55 Lens is...

*** Comment #16,996: Joan Hayes ***

Congratulations Joan! We are getting your camera sent out to you right away!

Santa Fe BBQ Chicken Pizza, and a chance to win a Gourmet Getaway for two! #WorldMarketSweeps

Santa Fe BBQ Chicken Pizza
You all know I love to cook, and come up with recipes whenever I can. If I can combine two styles of food or cuisines to make one awesome meal, then I most certainly will.  And that was goal for my Santa Fe BBQ Chicken Pizza. I took my family’s love for pizza, and our love for Mexican and Southwestern food and combined them to make this delicious dinner for us.
This pizza is topped with plenty of cheese, veggies (peppers, onions, sweet corn, black beans, grape tomatoes), chicken, and BBQ sauce.Santa Fe BBQ Chcicken Pizza Collage 2
Santa Fe BBQ Chicken Pizza Recipe
Pizza Dough:
  • 2 1/4 white bread flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 1 tsp of instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 tsp. of salt
  • 3/4- 1 cup of lukewarm water
  • 1- 1 1/2 tbsp. of olive oil plus extra for kneading (I used the Extra Virgin Olive Oil from World Market)
Combine the flour, yeast, and salt in a mixing bowl. Make a small well in the top. Mix in 3/4 of a cup of the lukewarm water and the olive oil until it becomes a sticky dough. You can add a little more water if needed in order to mix the dough into a sticky ball.
Lightly flour your work surface ad knead the dough for about 10 minutes, Cuntil it is smooth and elastic.
Cover the dough with some lightly oiled plastic wrap or a damp dish towel and let it rise for 1 hour or until it is doubled in size.
Use a rolling pin to roll the dough out into the size and shape you want.
Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.
Place your pizza dough onto the pizza paddle. Cover your dough with BBQ sauce. Then add shredded Pepper Jack Cheese, then grape tomatoes, chopped bell peppers, chopped onions, sweet corn, black beans, and seasoned chicken. Add some Colby Jack Cheese to the top to cover everything.  If you want a spicier kick to your pizza you can add some sliced Northwoods Jalapeno Jack cheese from World Market to your pizza like I did with the half my husband and I ate. The other half was left without it for the kids to enjoy.
Put your pizza in the oven on top of the pizza stone and bake for 15-20 minutes.  You can use the pizza paddle to remove the pizza from the oven and place it right on the table.

Our Pizza & Margarita night was a big success, and it didn’t hurt that I had become inspired while doing some shopping at World Market.  I found a great recipe book for 100 different variations of pizzas, all using the same recipe for the crust, a large pizza paddle which helped me transfer the pizza in and out of the oven, the Tres Agaves Margarita Mix, and even a pizza stone. I also picked up a couple of placemats and that awesome pitcher (above pic) for the margaritas! I love that it’s plastic and not glass. There’s no chance of me breaking it. :)
Pizza and Margaritas_from_WM_Collage
World Market isn’t just a place full of great home d├ęcor and furnishings.  They also carry food and beverages (including an enormous wine selection!), kitchen tools, jewelry and apparel, and so much more.  World Market brings items from around the world into your very own home, and sometimes they even send lucky customers/fans on their very own trip across the globe.  This summer they have held amazing sweepstakes online, giving shoppers and fans the chance to win a once in a lifetime trip.
Right now World Market is running their GOURMET GETAWAY SWEEPSTAKES and you can easily enter by going to their Facebook page!
The Grand Prize package includes :
  • A trip for two to to Santa Fe, New Mexico (this is a 5 day Trip for 2 to Santa Fe which includes airfare and hotel)
  • A hands on Southwestern Cooking Class with a Master Chef
  • A personally signed glossy cookbook
  • A multi-course dinner at the acclaimed Geronimo
  • A Southwestern Foodie Tour with a cultural kick
  • A $1,000 World Market gift card
** There will also be 3 runner up prize winners that will each receive a $500 World Market gift card!
The Gourmet Getaway Sweepstakes runs from August 18, 2012 until September 21, 2012. You can enter the World Market Gourmet Getaway Sweepstakes on the World Market Facebook page. And if you share the sweepstakes with 5 of your friends (via FB share or email) you can receive 5 additional bonus entries. This is part of the registration process when entering. Users can also enter daily for more chances to win.
You can stay up to date with World Market’s in-store promotions, deals, and fabulous finds by following them on: FACEBOOK / TWITTER / PINTEREST / GOOGLE+
This shop is part of a social shopper marketing insight campaign with Pollinate Media Group™, but all my opinions are my own.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

The joy kids bring… and sometimes not

So no one agrees more than me that there are endless joys of being a parent. For example…

Taking your kids to the library and letting them fill their little sponge like brains with knowledge…


Watching your 2 year old devour a cup of blueberries and love them (because your kid being healthy without you having to force them, is AWE-SOME!)…


Your kids’ angelic smiles, while rockin’ some extra large sunglasses on their faces….


And your little one making you laugh by trying to wear his dad’s shorts that are just way too big…


Yeah, those are all joys that kids bring to you as a parent. 

And these are not:

1. Your son yelling “Abra Cadabra, make my mom disappear!” while in Target, in front of lots of people.

2. Your daughter yelling “I’m bad!” and when you try and say, “No baby, you’re good.” she growls ferociously at you.  Oh yeah, she was being bad alright.

3. Telling your son you have to work on the computer right then, and he immediately turns it off while you’re in the middle of an email.

4.  Your daughter walking right in front of the shopping cart while you’re leaving the store, and then falling down, and you proceed to run the cart into her because it’s too late to stop it.  Hello crying 2 year old, and strangers who think you’re the worst mom ever.


The joys of parenting might be endless, but the non-joyful parts of it are plentiful for sure.  Anyone care to share a joyful or a non-joyful parenting moment? There’s nothing like unloading or sharing these precious moments, right?

Saturday, August 11, 2012

What I’m Loving right now for Accessories

photo (1)

I’ve never been much of a bracelet person. Honestly, out of all the accessories a gal could wear, they were not at the top of my list. But in the past few weeks I have been drawn to wearing  bangles. I sometimes feel like I’m back in the 80’s when I put them on, but eh, what’s an up and coming mom fashion icon gonna do right? 

Are you into any fashion or accessory trends right now? What about the bangles, could you sport them with your favorite outfit?

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Canon T3 DSLR Camera GIVEAWAY!!!

  PhotobucketA Glimpse InsidePhotobucketPhotobucket taradara

ARE YOU GUYS EXCITED? I know you are!

I partnered up with some of my fellow blogging friends to bring you one of the best giveaways this blog has ever done or been a part of.  We are giving away a brand new Canon DSLR camera, the popular Canon T3, and it comes equipped with an 18-55mm "kit" lens.  Awesome, right?  

 The Canon T3 is one of the most popular entry level DSLR cameras on the market. It is lightweight, and you can buy tons of lenses to best fit your style of photography. While you learn more about your camera, you can use it's automatic settings- then move to aperture priority and manual modes fairly quickly! The 18-55mm "kit"lens included with this prize is a zoom lens that is great to begin with. It can work indoors, works with landscapes, and even portrait photography to make it a wonderful beginner all-around lens. To enter, please use the rafflecopter widget below. PLEASE give it a minute to load- it can load slowly with really popular giveaways! Also, don't forget that you can earn an extra entry everyday for tweeting about the giveaway!

  In the twitter entry below, please add the text: "Win a Canon T3 DSLR from @alwaysnwonder. Enter here:".

a Rafflecopter giveaway Please stop by the contest co-sponsors to check out their lovely blogs and thank them for this wonderful opportunity! Following us through Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, RSS, etc helps us bring you awesome opportunities like this giveaway!

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Confession for the day… Book addict

I feel kind of embarrassed just confessing this to you, but it’s totally true. I am a sucker for some young adult fiction. You know, Twilight, Divergent, Hunger Games, etc...
divergenthunger gamestwilight
I love reading, could read all day long without interruption if I was allowed. But you know, things like life, kids, work, they get in the way of that. ;) 
I am always looking for new books to read, and no, they don’t have to be YA fiction either. I like mysteries, romance, thrillers, some classics, etc…
So with my confession, I was hoping you guys would share some of your favorite books, or tell me what kind of books are on your must read list. Anything good I should be reading? Let me know!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Project ?, otherwise known as Project I don’t know what to call it…

I finally painted the rest of our kitchen ceiling, and the last part of a wall that we had sealed off… now I just have to finish my “project” for that area… On the left is the BEFORE, and on the right is the AFTER…
Still not totally sure what I want to do with the framed in section. I was thinking corkboard, chalkboard, dry erase, magnetic surface, or a combo of all 4? What do you think?

Thursday, August 2, 2012

My new shiny, expensive toys and what’s going on with us…

new washer and dryer
As you can see I upgraded our washer and dryer, a serious upgrade for sure.   This is the first time we’ve ever purchased a washer and dryer. The other two sets we have had have been used and given to us by my parents. It’s kind of crazy to know that we have a brand new set in our laundry room.  I used to have to sit on top of our washing machine or drape my body over it just so it wouldn’t go clear across the laundry room floor. And our dryer sounded like there was a pair of tennis shoes rumbling around in it every time I used it.  Yesterday I did a couple of loads of laundry and actually liked doing it!  That’s a first.  Thank goodness for Lowe’s and our line of credit there, other wise these babies would never have made it home with us. Justin is dedicating himself to working some major overtime at work so we can pay these things off. Geez I LOVE MY HUSBAND! Like Whoa.