Dafney Harper

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Friday, May 31, 2013

may foodie penpals: reveal day!

Can you believe it's the last day of May?  I'm sad that "birth-month" is almost over :(  But, I'm super happy to share with you my May foodie penpal goodies!  

If you haven't heard of foodie penpals {shame on you}, you should head over to Lindsay's blog, The Lean Green Bean and check out the foodie penpal program...and while you're there, you might as well check out all of her amazing recipes & other fun bloggy "things"!  

Let's get to the good stuff...shall we?!  This month I received treats from Lindsay who is a fellow blog reader :)  She sent me some amazing treats, so let's dig in:

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  • TJ's Cinnamon Schoolbook Cookies:  Not only were these cinnamon-y & delicious, they were fun to play with {who doesn't love playing with their food every now & then?}!  My 17 month old loved these {educational} cookies, too - a total win-win in my book!
  • Justin's Almond Butter:  Seriously, this stuff is the best, especially for "on-the-go" snacks!
  • Dark Chocolate Speculoos Candy Bar:  Think dark chocolate meets cookie butter...um, total awesomeness! 
  • TJ's PB & J Milk Chocolate Bar:  Holy crap, a PB & J candy bar...does it get much better than this?!
  • Justin's Organic Peanut Butter Cups:  Probably one of my favorite treats ever...there is just something completely amazing about chocolate & peanut butter together :)
  • TJ's Spicy Lime nut mix:  OH.MY.GOSH. this was unbelievably tasty!  I love spicy foods and these did not disappoint!  
  • Smokey Spice Rub:  I haven't had time to try this yet, but it's on my list for this weekend!  Hopefully the weather is nice so I can do some grillin'!
  • TJ's Gluten Free Granola:  I was beyond excited to try this and to my surprise it was better than I had anticipated!  It's crunchy and slightly sweet and has been perfect as a mid-morning snack!  I will definitely be buying this again and again!
  • TJ's bag:  Lindsay was even sweet enough to send a Trader Joe's bag...we use these things all the time!!
A big, HUGE THANK YOU to Lindsay for sending me such a wonderful foodie package!  

Jealous and want to join??  Here's how:

What is the program all about?

- On the 5th of every month, you will receive your penpal pairing via email.  It will be your responsibility to contact your penpal & get their mailing address & any other information you might need such as allergy or dietary restrictions.

- You will have until the 15th of the month to put your box of goodies in the mail.  On the last day of the month, you will post about the goodies you received from your penpal!

- The boxes are to be filled with fun foodie things, local food items or even homemade treats.  The spending limit is $15.  The box must also include something written.  This can be anything from a note explaining what's in the box, to a fun recipe...use your imagination; the possibilities are endless!

- You are responsible for figuring out the best way to ship your items depending on their size & how fragile they are.  *Don't forget about flat rate boxes!*

-Foodie Penpals is open to blog readers as well as bloggers.  If you're a reader & you get paired with a blogger, you are to write a short guest post for your penpal to post on their blog about what you received.  If two readers are paired together, neither needs to worry about writing a post for the month.

- Foodie Penpals is open to US & Canadian residents.  Please note, Canadian residents will be paired with other Canadian residents ONLY.  We've determined things might get too slow & backed up if we're trying to send foods through customs across the border from the US to Canada & vice versa. 

If you are interested in participatin
 ​for June
 , please CLICK HERE to fill out the participation form & to read the terms & conditions.

You must submit your information by June 4th as pairings will be emailed on June 5th.

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Going Gluten Free

A month or so ago, Hubby and I decided that we wanted to try eating GLUTEN FREE.  There wasn't really a "good reason"; however, recently I had been getting some bad headaches and was having trouble sleeping and I was willing to try just about anything to see if either or both would improve.  So, we decided we'd cut out Gluten.  I was a little intimidated at first, but did some research and found some really great Gluten free blogs...such as this one or this one and I can't forget this one.  Once I found these blogs, I felt a little bit more confident about meal planning & changing our eating habits.  

So, what exactly is Gluten?  The definition states it's "a substance present in cereal grains, especially wheat, that is responsible for the elastic texture of dough".  In "Leah-Terms", it's the glue that holds yummy food together ;)  I did a little research and planned out all of our meals and found it to be a lot easier than I had anticipated.  It seems as though Celiac Disease is on the rise and most grocery stores carry Gluten free foods.  I've never really had to look what I was buying before, so having to read labels closely was a foreign concept.  It definitely took longer to grocery shop, but in the end, I bought all Gluten free foods.  Everything from pasta, to breakfast foods, sweet treats, salad dressings and pretty much everything else in-between :)

I will say that even though it was easy to find GF products, it was not so nice on the wallet.  GF foods tend to be a lot more expensive.  I bought a GF cookie mix and it was $6 and made about 15 cookies.  I am sure there are better places to buy GF foods, but I stuck with my local grocery store.

How do I feel?  For the first 2 weeks, I didn't really notice a change, but into week 3, it sort of hit me that I was sleeping better and hadn't had a headache in over a week.  Who knows - maybe it's coincidence or all in my head, but maybe just maybe eating GF will help my headaches and sleep patterns!  For now, we're trying to eat GF as often as possible and we hope to continue this for a while.  

Here are a few pictures of the GF meals we made:

And, last, but certainly not least, stay tuned this week for a BIG announcement!  Yep, our household has BIG things happening...and I'm excited to finally share it with you ;)  

Happy Wednesday!

Monday, May 20, 2013

dafney's "boyfriend", "leah-palooza" and my second Mother's Day!

A long, long, long (okay, I think you get the point) time ago, we had some friends over & they brought their completely sweet and totally adorable little one with them.  I'm pretty sure that Dafney & R are going to the Senior Prom together :)  

When our friends came over, R was 5 months old.  The second R came in the door, Dafney was completely obsessed.  She kept pointing to him & saying "baby"!  She gave him more kisses than a {then} 14 month old should & the hugs were endless.  Needless to say, Dafney won't be left alone with a boy anytime soon ;)  It was extremely adorable how cute she was with her new buddy!  She only laid on him twice and he only almost lost an eye once.  Not bad for a toddler-baby combination!  I'm sure someday she'll be totally embarrassed when we tell her about her makeout sesh with R, but I'm a parent now and I'm all about embarrassing my daughter this is a story that I plan on sharing with her :)

Don't you think they're the cutest little kiddo's ever?!

Hugs :)


hmm...you look like you need ANOTHER kiss :)

A couple weeks ago we celebrated "Leah-Palooza"...otherwise known as my birthday!  I lucked out and got a gorgeous day.  I took the afternoon off work to get ready for the "leah-palooza" party.  We had some friends over, grilled some food, drank some drinks and had an enjoyable time with some of our favorite loved ones :)  It was a perfect day!

Birthday cake from my amazing co-workers!


Birthday Cake (#2) from a friend!

Mother's Day was another perfect day!  I got to spend it with Dafney & my husband, but also my parents, sister & brother-in-law!  We went to the Zoo and enjoyed each other's company as well as watching Dafney run around!  Then we went back to my parent's house for dinner...truly a perfect day!

Starting the beautiful day with a walk!

Grandma & Grandpa

Me and my love ♥