THE pepper EXPRESS: September 2016

Monday, September 19, 2016

Things I've Googled This Week

This photo is from our Road Trip and I can't wait to share the blog post with you!
  1. My 15 year old son told me that cow tipping was a myth. And reading this article confirms that. 
  2. For months I have been looking for clogs. I have had my eye on these for the longest but I just couldn't justify the price. So I found these instead. 
  3. Christmas is less than 100 days away and I have these three things on my mind for family members: one, two and three!
  4. We are planning an October trip to Disneyland and I have been pinning up a storm. Check out my pinterest feed here. Whenever I usually google an image it hyperlinks me back to pinterest.
  5. Since we have been traveling so much I have wanted to buy a makeup bag that worked best. And this one has caught my eye. I love anything recommended from modfamily.
  6. I am absolutely blown away from this new Emoticode app.  If you ever want to know what someone is wearing on snapchat or how to buy it. You just take a screen shot of their emoticode and follow the steps on the app. I knew they were going to affiliate snapchat somehow. But this is pure genius!
  7. Also does anyone have any recommendations for restaurants in Long Beach? I have a blog conference to go to in two weeks and I'll be spending the weekend around LA. This 24 hour cupcake ATM is on my list!
  8. Yay! For Kate Mckinnon for winning her Emmy! She is one of the reasons I love to watch SNL.
  9. Speaking of the Emmys and Jimmy Kimmel. You should watch this clip from Ellen, when they play live would you rather. I couldn't stop laughing!
  10. And if your not watching Stranger Things on Netflix... GET ON THAT BANDWAGON!

Thursday, September 15, 2016

#AD Kale Salad & Chicken Wings from Walmart

This post is written by me on behalf of Tyson Foods, Inc. All opinions are entirely my own. This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #GameTimeHero #CollectiveBias
The world is obsessed with kale right? Okay, Okay maybe it's just me, but I am in love with my new recipe. My kale salad recipe is a rendition out of a Waldorf salad and coleslaw. That doesn't sound too appealing but I am telling you this recipe will be perfect for your next game day. I like to pair my kale salad with these crispy wings found at the Walmart Hot Deli counter. They are only $10 for a bucket of 20 wings! It was easy to buy all of my kale salad ingredients in the produce section and conveniently the Hot Deli counter had wings affordably priced. This side dish is quick and easy and goes great with the wings found at the Walmart Hot Deli counter. I was able prepare this salad at home before our football party began:
Kale Salad Ingredients
1 Bunch of Kale
1/2 Red Onion
1 Fuji Apple
1 Granny Smith Apple
1 Tsp of Lemon Juice
1 Cup Poppy Seed Dressing
1 Cup Honey Roasted Sunflower Seeds
The first step is to dice everything up. For the kale you want to remove the stem. I usually fold the kale in half and cut the stem off. Then slice the kale both ways. Cut each apple into matchsticks and then use the lemon juice to prevent them from turning brown. Take half of the red onion and small dice it:
 In a separate bowl, layer each ingredient except the poppy seed dressing:
Then mix all of the produce together:
Use the poppy seed dressing sparingly. A little goes a long ways. If you like a lot of dressing use the whole cup:
If you have any left over kale you can use it as a garnish for your wings:
This kale salad compliments the crispy wings and is perfect for your next tailgating event!
If you would like to find more delicious recipes check out the Game Day Recipes HERE!
What is your favorite recipe for tailgating?

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Solin's Yosemite Trip

I know I know the rule that you should put your phone down while you are outside. But as a photographer I had to capture these moments. We used to carry on a tradition of going to Yosemite every February and the last time we went to Yosemite I was eight months pregnant with Solin. You check that post out HERE. It has been over two years since we have been back! Typing that actually made me sad. Because I love Yosemite. 
Well we recently invested in a pop up tent and that thing has saved my camping sanity. It made everything so convenient.  We packed everything in there and once we were on our campsite we were able to pop it up right then and there. By the way Solin LOVES to camp. She gets to play in the dirt. She gets to run all over the place. Plus she gets to run after squirrels and birds. Solin was born to be outside:
Here is a photo of Solin picking up her gum off the ground. And then she put it in her month while i was taking this photo. Talk about mom freak out moment: "Gross! That's yucky!"
My loves using their binoculars to look at the birds:
Solin called each and every rock a slide :)
If you check out the last Yosemite post HERE you can see that we have a very similar photo of Solin in my belly. I am going to treasure these photos:
This makes me so sad. Curry Village has turned into Half Dome Village because of some copyrighting issue and now their sign looks like this:
One of the best ideas I've had about camping was to pack our weekly Blue Apron meals to go camping. We were going to be gone for a couple days and I didn't want them to sit in the fridge. So I packed each individual meal in a large freezer bag and I was able to cook them out side on our camping stove. This recipe is called a Fregola Sarda Pasta and it was the perfect meal after  long day of biking and hiking.
My husband bought these camping stoves a while back and they are incredible for camping:
The finished product and oh how delicious it was:
Camping wouldn't be complete without s'mores. When my husband went to the store to buy s'mores supplies he came back with graham crackers, marshmallows, and chocolate morsels. I said "Wait a minute dude. Where's my chocolate bar?" and he said "It's better with morsels!" Well I couldn't survive without that bar of chocolate, so when we stopped for gas I bought a few bars and hide them in the ice chest. And guess who's s'more was better:
This photo makes me laugh because Solin couldn't wait for daddy to make pancakes. She had to have breakfast before breakfast. It was really cute how she asked for cereal and then pancakes. I guess with all of the hiking she needed the extra carbs:
My little bear:
While riding our tandem on the bike trails we would often stop at Half Dome Village for coffee, wifi, and even their restrooms:
North Dome:
I am so happy I can put her hair up in a pony tail again:
Another sad moment was when I found out that the Ahwahnee Hotel is now called the Majestic Hotel. We like to walk through the solarium and even their grand banquet room is gorgeous. We thought about stopping for dinner. But realized the price for an organic fried eggplant was a little too much considering we had all the ingredients back at our camp site. 
Usually when we go to Yosemite in February the falls are full of water and there is snow on the ground. Seeing the falls in September made me a little somber. They were completely dry:
This cheeky little girl was so dirty by the time we left; that we actually ran out of clean clothes for. I tried not to over pack. Next time I will be prepared.
Until next time Yosemite!

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

DIY Potty Training Nook

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #PottyTrainTogether #CollectiveBias
And I thought working 8-5 everyday was hard. Nope! Potty training has become more and more of a nuisance because my daughter seems to be stubborn about learning how to potty train. The other day my two and a half year old walked up to me and said "Mama, change diaper." Clear as day. That's when I knew we had to put this potty training into full force. We've tried the Winnie the Pooh approach, where she walks around without bottoms all day. That didn't work. She ended up having an accident on our couch and a few places around the house. The best thing I have learned is to be prepared. We created a little potty training nook near our bathroom that is designated for my toddler. We make sure to have all of the necessary products to help her potty train. I found Pull-Ups® Cool & Learn® Training Pants for Girls at Walmart and knew they were going to be a perfect fit for our potty training adventure. They have a cooling sensation that feels cool when wet. Which helps trigger the potty training method. The best part is the all around protection and the easy open sides! I also purchased flushable wipes, stickers and the toddler potty from Walmart. 
Necessities to make your own Potty Training Nook:
Shelving unit with wheels
Two or more baskets
Flushable Wipes
Extra Outfit
Toddler Potty Seat
After gathering all of your necessities you can then separate your Pull-Ups® Cool & Learn® Training Pants packages into each basket. I prefer to use rectangle shaped baskets because they fit perfectly in each of the shelves.
Each basket contains one Package of Pull-Ups® Cool & Learn® Training Pants. Right now you can get a coupon for $2 off 1 package of Pull-Ups at Walmart until October 8th. Click HERE!
My second shelf is dedicated to an extra pack of Pull-Ups® Cool & Learn® Training Pants and the flushable wipes.
Last but not least I use the bottom shelf for my extra set of cloths and stickers. This allows easy access to the clothes and the stickers.The completed Potty Training Nook can be wheeled into the bathroom if needed. Or your toddler can use it right then and there.
If you would like to learn more about Pull-Ups® Cool & Learn® available at Walmart check out their web page HERE.

You can figure out which potty training character your child is. We learned that Solin is a squirrel and learns very well with the method below:
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