Mindy is a stay-at-home Mom to her 2 year old daughter and infant son. She previously worked full-time as a Paralegal for more than 10 years. She loves cooking & baking, classic rock, coffee and wine, sunshine and spending time with her children.

Oct 072015

Has there ever been a time when you ran out of something at the worst possible moment?  I remember one time when I was baking cookies and I ran out of sugar.  I had already mixed up the dry ingredients, and had creamed some butter in my mixer.  I went to the cabinet to get the sugar out, and realized that I did not have enough to finish the recipe.  I quickly ran over to the dish I keep the sugar for my coffee in, hoping that there would be enough in there to finish the recipe, but that was almost empty too.  I couldn’t believe that I had run so low on sugar and not even noticed.

So, there I was, with butter in my mixer, and a bowl full of flour and other dry ingredients sitting on my counter.  I had to load both kids in the car and drive up the street to buy a package of sugar at the corner store.  I was so frustrated and annoyed.  It was a huge inconvenience for me at that moment, and I remember thinking to myself that I would always check to make sure I had enough ingredients on hand BEFORE starting to bake something from then on.

While my little fiasco with the sugar put a damper on my day, it would really be a lot worse if I ever ran out of something more important than that.  Running out of bath tissue, for example, would be just awful, don’t you think?  Especially if it were at a time when I had company over.  Yikes!  I always make sure I keep a huge stash of Scott bath tissue on hand, so I never run into an embarrassing situation.

Scott has at least 600 more sheets per roll than any other National Brand, and now they have added 100 more sheets per roll with their new Scott® 1000 bonus pack, available at Sam’s Club®!   I just love shopping at Sam’s Club®.  They have so many awesome deals, and the cost of a membership certainly pays for itself over and over again. I love being able to buy products I use a lot in bulk, which saves me time and money.

Scott® 1000 bonus pack

This humongous package of bath tissue is already being sold at a bargain of a price, but right now you can save even more on the Scott® 1000 bonus pack when you download the Ibotta app

Ibotta AppAfter you download the Ibotta app, you simply search for Scott®, and it will bring up a deal where you can get $5.00 back on your purchase of the Scott® 1000 bonus pack at Sam’s Club®.  Take a poll and watch a short video to get started.  Then, after you purchase your package of bath tissue, simply scan the barcode and take a photo of your receipt within the Ibotta app.  After your purchase has been verified, you will receive $5.00 in your Ibotta account!

Ibotta App

I stocked my bathroom closet with the Scott® 1000 bonus pack, and I think we will be set for quite a while!  I had previously bought a smaller package of Scott® bath tissue a few weeks ago, and as you can see, I still have quite a lot left from that too.  This bath tissue lasts a long time, and I love not having to worry about running out!

Scott® 1000 bonus pack

What things do you stock up on for your home?

 Posted by at 9:23 am
Oct 052015

This is a sponsored post for Dunkin’ Donuts through Blog Meets Brand.  All opinions are 100% my own.

Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day.  I love everything about it – coffee, eggs, ham, sausage, bacon, bread… it’s all so delicious!  I don’t reserve breakfast food for only the morning time, though.  There are many days when I love to have breakfast food for lunch or even dinner. 

Yesterday, John and I headed out to town with the kids to run some quick errands.  We had a pretty busy morning of getting the kids ready to leave the house (it always takes hours for some reason!), so we did not have time to eat breakfast before we left. By the time 11:00 rolled around, we were starving, and in desperate need of some food and coffee.  Neither one of us was in the mood for lunch food yet, so we decided to stop at Dunkin’ Donuts to grab a hot breakfast sandwich and a coffee.  We didn’t feel like taking the kids out of their car seats to run inside, so we just went through the drive-thru.  I think the drive-thru is my favorite invention ever!

Dunkin' Donuts

I love that I can get a fresh and delicious breakfast sandwich from Dunkin’ Donuts any time of day.  Isn’t it awesome that they serve up breakfast all day long?!  We have several Dunkin’ Donuts locations near our house, so I can just hop in the car and grab a breakfast sandwich and coffee or other beverage any time I want.  As a Mom with 2 kids under 3, it’s really nice to have the option of going through a drive-thru where I can pick up my favorite breakfast food without having to get everyone out of the car. 

Dunkin' Donuts

There are a variety of breakfast sandwiches to choose from at Dunkin’ Donuts, made on your choice of croissants, bagels, English muffin or flat bread, and smaller portions like Wake-Up Wraps on flour tortillas.

I think I have tried every single breakfast sandwich from the Dunkin’ Donuts menu at one point or another, but my all-time favorite is the ham, egg and cheese on a bagel.  It’s so warm and hearty, and super tasty.  I also love the fact that it’s really easy to eat on-the-go, and in the car, without making a big mess.

Dunkin' Donuts

And then there’s the coffee… oh, yes.  It’s so delicious!  They have so many blends and flavors, that you can get pretty much anything you want!  Did you know there are more than 15,000 ways to order a coffee at Dunkin’ Donuts?!  Incredible!

So, the next time you’re in the mood for a tasty breakfast sandwich and beverage in the morning, afternoon, or evening, head on over to your local Dunkin’ Donuts and they will hook you up… you won’t even have to get out of your car!

P.S.  Check out DD Perks to earn reward points on your purchases, and for some pretty sweet offers, including a free beverage on your birthday!

 Posted by at 11:34 am
Oct 012015

I participated in a Blog Blast Activation on behalf of Influence Central for MilkWise. I received product samples and a promotional item to thank me for my participation.

If you love a tall glass of milk, but hate the calories, then I have some good news for you!  A new, innovative milk beverage called MilkWise has recently hit stores in New England and Upstate New York, and it is has fewer calories, less sugar and MORE calcium than traditional dairy milk! 


I have tried all three flavors of MilkWise myself (Original, Vanilla and Reduced Sugar Vanilla), and they taste amazing!  I love that I don’t have to sacrifice great flavor for a lower calorie option.


If you live in New England or Upstate New York, you can find MilkWise right in the dairy aisle, but if you want to try it before you buy it, you just might be in luck because MilkWise is out on tour this month, and offering up some free samples!  Click here to find a tour location near you.


 Posted by at 10:04 am
Sep 242015

Pumpkin!  Pumpkin!  Are you tired of pumpkin yet??  Not me!  That’s why I’m sharing yet another pumpkin recipe with you today.  This recipe is for Pumpkin Spice Sandwich Cookies, and let me tell you, they are AMAZING! 

Pumpkin Spice Sandwich Cookies

These cookies are actually shaped like cute little pumpkins, and they are so soft and delicious, and then sandwiched between two of them is my Pumpkin Spice Frosting, which is seriously to die for.  These cookies and frosting are totally a match made in heaven!  I hope you will make these and enjoy them just as much as I did!

Pumpkin Spice Sandwich Cookies

To make the cookie part of these Pumpkin Spice Sandwich Cookies, I followed the recipe for Pumpkin Spice Cutout Cookies from Glorious Treats.  Her recipe is absolutely perfect, and I did not change a thing! 

After making the dough and allowing it to chill, I used this cute little pumpkin cookie cutter from a set I purchased from Amazon.  I love the size of it, not too small, and not too big.  It’s juuuust right!  Plus, you get all those other cute Halloween cookie cutters, too!

I cut out all of my cookies, then I used the top of a small plastic spoon to press 3 little indents on each to make them look like a real pumpkin.  You’ll want to flip half of your cookies over before pressing the indents in them, so that when you put your sandwiches together, the indents will show on the outer side for each cookie in the sandwich.

Pumpkin Spice Sandwich Cookies

Next, I rubbed just a tiny bit of cocoa powder on the stem part of the cookie to make it look like a real pumpkin stem.  Cocoa powder is bitter tasting on its own, but this uses so little of it that you really do not taste it while eating the cookie.

Pumpkin Spice Sandwich Cookies

Next, I popped the cookies into the freezer for 5-10 minutes to firm back up a little bit.  If you skip this step, your indents may not show up as well on the cookies after they have baked, as they will spread more in the oven.

Bake the cookies at 350 degrees for 9-11 minutes, then transfer them to a cookie rack to cool. 

After your cookies have cooled, spread a bit of Pumpkin Spice Frosting on half of the cookies (not on the side with the indents), then place a second cookie on top (with the indented side facing out).

And there you have your perfect little Pumpkin Spice Sandwich Cookies!  Enjoy!

Pumpkin Spice Sandwich Cookies

 Posted by at 10:50 am
Sep 232015

One thing I love about fall is all the delicious soup, stew and chili recipes that get made this time of year. They’re great for serving up at your tailgate, after picking apples, or just for curling up on a cool fall day. Here are 20 delicious fall soup recipes packed with flavors that are sure to tempt your tastebuds!

20 Delicious Fall Soup Recipes

Creamy Pumpkin Soup – Oh My! Creative
Sausage & Pumpkin Chili – Thrifty Northwestern Mom
Creamy Sweet Potato & Apple Soup – A Cedar Spoon
Roasted Root Vegetable & Apple Soup – Momma Lew
Pumpkin Soup with Toasted Pine Nuts – Mama Likes to Cook
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Soup – Amanda’s Cookin’
Butternut Squash Soup – Moms and Crafters
Green Chile Pumpkin Soup – Just Us Four
Loaded Baked Potato Soup – Pink When
Sausage, Mushroom & Wild Rice Soup – Amanda’s Cookin’
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chili – Kalyn’s Kitchen
Pumpkin Lamb Chili – The Rebel Chick
Pumpkin Corn Cheddar Soup – Homemaking Hacks
Hearty Veggie Bean Chili – Strength and Sunshine
Potato Soup – Our Small Hours
Pumpkin Black Bean Chili – Tastes Better From Scratch
Old Fashioned Beef Stew – The Bright Side of Reality
White Chicken Bacon Chili – The Farm Girl Gabs
Thai Butternut Squash Soup – Just Us Four
Slow Cooker Pumpkin Chili Mexicana – All Four Burners

Which of these delicious fall soup recipes will you make for your family?  For more great soup recipes, follow my Soups, Chowders & Stews board on Pinterest, where I have more than 100 amazing recipes pinned!

 Posted by at 9:30 pm
Sep 172015

I recently shared my love of all things pumpkin, and even shared a recipe for a delicious Pumpkin Spice Frosting.  Have you checked it out yet? 

One of my favorite ways to enjoy pumpkin in the fall months is as cake or cheesecake.  Is there anything better than fixing yourself a cup of coffee, hot cocoa or tea, and settling down on the couch with a good movie and a big slice of pumpkin cake or cheesecake?  I think not! 

Check out this collection of 25 yummy pumpkin cake and cheesecake recipes and try your favorites!25 Pumpkin Cake and Pumpkin Cheesecake RecipesPumpkin Magic Doctored Cake MixAmanda’s Cookin’
Pumpkin Cheesecake BitesJust Us Four
Pumpkin Cupcakes w/ Cinnamon ButtercreamSarah’s Bake Studio
Pumpkin CakeCreative Green Living
Pumpkin Cheesecake BarsPassion for Savings (pictured)
Pumpkin Cheesecake (Less Sugar)Kalyn’s Kitchen (pictured)
Pumpkin Pie CupcakesLiving Sweet Moments
Gingerbread Pumpkin CheesecakeHealthy Seasonal Recipes (pictured)
Pumpkin Cupcakes w/ Cinnamon Cream Cheese FrostingTastes Better From Scratch
Pumpkin Dump CakeMadame Deals
Pumpkin Pudding Poke CakeAmanda’s Cookin’
Pumpkin Cheesecake BallsMommy’s Playbook
Pumpkin Cupcakes w/ Whipped Cinnamon ToppingBless This Mess Please
Pumpkin Spice Latte CupcakesBaking Beauty
Pumpkin & Spice CakeThe Crafting Chicks
Spiced Pumpkin Cake TrufflesPassion for Savings
Pumpkin Pie CupcakesThe Rebel Chick (pictured)
Mini Ghost Pumpkin CakesAshlee Marie
3 Ingredient Pumpkin Spice CakeSavvy Saving Couple
Pumpkin Cake w/ Pumpkin CandiesCake Whiz (pictured)
Pumpkin Gooey Butter CakeKitchen Meets Girl
Cinnamon Streusel Pumpkin Coffee Cake with Maple GlazePinch of Yum
Pumpkin Spice Cake BallsBack to Her Roots
Double Pumpkin Poke Cake – Beyond Frosting
Pumpkin Magic Custard CakeThe Gunny Sack

Which of these pumpkin cake or pumpkin cheesecake recipes do you want to try the most?  I can’t decide.  I want them ALL!

 Posted by at 3:28 pm
Sep 172015

One of the biggest challenges I faced as a new Mom of two, was bringing both of my kids shopping, by myself.  Shopping with a toddler and an infant was something I really dreaded, and I put it off for months.  As I do about pretty much everything in life, I feared the worst.  I thought they would be just awful, and I would come home feeling worn out and completely embarrassed. 

One day, I finally decided that I was tired of being stuck inside the house.  I am an introvert, so most days this does not usually bother me, but there are some days when I just need to get out of the house. 

I have to plan everything I do out ahead of time, and shopping with a toddler and an infant was no different.  I knew there were certain things I could do to prepare for our trip to the store, that would hopefully make it a little less stressful for everyone, and sure enough, it worked!  Our shopping trips have been pretty uneventful so far, and I owe it all to these great tips that I use every time.

10 Tips for Successfully Shopping with a Toddler and an Infant

  1.  Make sure both kids have napped.  Toddlers and infants get very cranky when they haven’t napped, and they are more likely to become fussy in the store.  Making sure both kids are well rested before you head out to the store is an absolute must.  They will be less likely to act out if they have had a nap. 
  2. Make sure both kids have been fed.  Feeding your kids right before you leave the house is just as important as making sure they have taken a nap.  Kids get “hangry” very easily, and if you are going to a store that’s full of yummy food, they will want everything in sight if they haven’t eaten recently.  That will surely lead to some major melt-downs, and embarrassing moments for you.
  3. Babywear.  Wearing your infant in a carrier (I love my Boba 4-G!) while shopping has a couple of advantages.  First, your baby will feel more calm and comfortable while out in public, if they are close to you, and second, you will have more room in your cart for your purchases.  Another advantage, is that you will also have your hands free to take care of your toddler when necessary.  Your toddler should be placed securely in the front seat of the cart.  Now is not the time to let them test out their independence by letting them walk with you.  You will likely end up chasing them around the store the whole time if you do that.
  4. Make an organized list and stick to it.  Shopping with a toddler and an infant will be a lot easier if you have a list of things you need to get.  I group items on my list together by department – dairy, meat, produce, canned goods, etc.  This way, I can get everything I need quickly from each department, and not have to walk back and forth all over the store trying to get everything on my list. 
  5. Shop at all-in-one stores like Super Walmart or Target.  If you need to get more than just groceries, try to shop at one store that has everything you need.  Taking the kids out to multiple stores in one trip is just asking for a disaster.
  6. Avoid “Eye-Candy” Stores.  Try to avoid stores that have an overwhelming amount of eye-catching goodies all in once place, like party stores or dollar stores.  The one time (and only!) time I took Kayleigh into a dollar store, she wanted EVERYTHING she saw.  I now save those trips for when I am alone.  I can take my time trying to find what I need, without a toddler trying to grab everything in the store.
  7. Keep your toddler distracted/entertained.  If your toddler is bored, they are more likely to act out while shopping.  Keep them entertained by asking them to recite the alphabet, numbers, sing a song, etc.  You can also ask them to point out different colors or items they see in the store.  For example, “Kayleigh, what do you see that’s red?” “What kind of vegetable is this, Kayleigh?”
  8.  Avoid Trigger Aisles.  Try to avoid aisles that will excite your toddler, such as candy aisles or cookie aisles.  Save those purchases for another time if you can.  If you absolutely must have something from those aisles, try to walk through them as quickly as you possibly can, before you toddler has a chance to throw a tantrum over something that catches their eye.
  9. Avoid Checkouts with Candy.  If you go through a checkout line with candy in it, your little one is going to want candy.  There is absolutely no doubt about it.  Try to go through the lines with something boring, like magazines, that they won’t have any interest in.
  10. Shop During Slow Hours.  Weekends, and 5-7pm during the week are not the best times to take your kids shopping.  Those hours are the busiest hours for stores, from what I have seen.  When I take my kids out to the store, I like to do it first thing in the morning, when most people are at work.  I find the stores are usually a lot slower during this time, and my kids are more relaxed.

With these shopping tips, I hope you will be able to master successfully shopping with a toddler and an infant!  If you have any tips that you find helpful, please feel free to share them in the comments below!

Photo provided by freedigitalphotos.net.
 Posted by at 2:50 pm
Sep 162015

There are two types of people – those who adore pumpkin flavored everything in the fall, and those that can’t stand it.  Lucky for me, I happen to be one of those people that simply cannot get enough pumpkin flavored things. 

Fall doesn’t seem to want to make its way to Maine just yet, as we are still getting temps in the 80’s these days, but that has not stopped me from baking my heart out.  I most recently made the best Pumpkin Spice Sandwich Cookies (I will share that recipe with you later on), and I made this delicious Pumpkin Spice Frosting for the filling. 

Pumpkin Spice Frosting

This frosting is so rich in pumpkin spice flavor, and it would taste amazing on just about anything.  What I love most about it, is that I whipped it up in just a couple of minutes, and using only 5 ingredients that I always have on hand.  There is just something so satisfying about making things at home instead of buying them at the store, isn’t there?  I think homemade things always taste fresher, and better.

I hope you enjoy this Pumpkin Spice Frosting as much as I do!  I let my 2 year old daughter Kayleigh lick the whisk after I was done whipping this frosting up.  She eagerly licked every last bit of it, and kept saying “It tastes so good!”  I think this recipe is a winner!

Pumpkin Spice Frosting


  • 5 Cups Powdered Sugar
  • 1/2 Stick of Softened Butter
  • 1/2 Cup Pure Pumpkin Puree
  • 1/2 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract
  • 1 Teaspoon Pumpkin Pie Spice


  1. Cream the butter and pumpkin puree together until smooth. 
  2. Add the vanilla extract and Pumpkin Pie Spice and mix until well combined. 
  3. Slowly add in the Powdered Sugar, until you reach a desired consistency.

Enjoy this delicious frosting on cakes, cupcakes, cookies, or anything your little heart desires! 

 Posted by at 9:41 pm
Sep 152015

Eggs are one of my favorite foods.  I love that there are so many different ways to cook eggs. You can prepare them in whatever way you wish, depending on what kind of mood you’re in.  I like eggs in any way, shape and form, and lately I’ve been really trying to perfect my egg-making skills. 

There are a lot of great tips out there on how to perfectly cook eggs, whether you want them scrambled, fried, boiled, poached, in an omelet, etc.  They say that the true test of a great chef is whether or not you can perfectly cook an egg.  Since it’s one of my lifelong dreams to be a chef, or at least an at-home chef, I’ll definitely be practicing with the great tips I found below.

9 Ways to Cook Eggs

  1. The Genius Tip for Perfect Scrambled Eggs from self.com
  2. How to Make the Perfect Omelet from Favorite Family Recipes
  3. 7 Simple Tips for Perfectly Poached Eggs Every Time from PopSugar
  4. How to Make the Perfect Boiled Egg, Every Time, Every Way from Greatist
  5. How to Fry Eggs – Sunny Side Up or Over Easy from Food Network
  6. How to Bake Eggs in the Oven from The Kitchn
  7. How to Make Steam Basted Eggs from safeeggs.com
  8. Eggs Benedict from Sally’s Baking Addiction
  9. How to Make a Perfect Frittata: Rules to Follow and Mistakes to Avoid from bon appetit

With so many different ways to cook eggs, which is your favorite?

Images provided by freedigitalphotos.net.

 Posted by at 3:25 pm
Sep 052015

Halloween is coming right up, and I am so excited!  This is the first year that my 2 year old daughter, Kayleigh, is really old enough to grasp the concept of Halloween, for the most part anyway.  Whenever I talk about Halloween with her, her eyes light right up and she shows a great interest in trick-or-treating and dressing up.  She says she wants to be a “green dinosaur” this year.  She’s just like me, always very specific in what she wants!

I’ve been trying to do some fun Halloween activities with her to get her excited for next month.  She absolutely loves freezer pops, so I decided to make some gummy worm freezer pops at home.  They’re a little on the spooky side to get in touch with the Halloween season, but not too spooky for a toddler.  I didn’t want to gross her out completely with eyeballs or anything like that, but if your kids are older, you could certainly add those to your own freezer pops!  Kayleigh thought the gummy worms were a great surprise!

Making these gummy worm freezer pops was so simple.  I recently bought this awesome freezer pop mold on Amazon, and I adore it!  We’ll certainly be making our own freezer pops for many years to come!

Gummy Worm Freezer Pops


  • 2 1/3 Cup of Your Favorite Juice (I used Welch’s Orange/Pineapple/Apple)
  • 18 Gummy Worms


  1. Place 3 gummy worms in each freezer pop mold.
  2. Fill each mold with juice.
  3. Insert freezer pop stick.
  4. Freeze for at least 8 hours.

This is what the freezer pops look like as you’re eating them – gummy worms spilling out.  Spooky, right?  :)

Gummy Worm Freezer Pops

What spooky treats will you add to your own freezer pops for the Halloween season?

 Posted by at 10:12 pm