Thursday, September 11, 2014

I'm so behind.

Once again I am apologizing for falling so far behind on posts and updates.  I've gotten some emails recently from friends and followers asking where I have been.

The summer was extremely busy here at the Monkeys and Moustaches household.  Our summer was filled with pool, beach, swim lessons, playdates and trying to finish our summer bucket list.  (Unfortunately only about half of our items got crossed off.) The kids and I had a bunch of fun but man, the summer flew by way too quickly!

I finished two 5Ks this summer.  The Renegade and Shape Magazine's Diva Dash.  Both were obstacle course, both were a ton of fun, and although it was 90*, 100% humidity and a much tougher course at the Diva Dash,  I shaved over 3 minutes off of my time.  My next 5K obstacle is on October 4th, the Insane Inflatable.

School has started here and both kiddos are extremely happy with their schools and classes.  My son is now in 5th grade.  New school, new teachers, new bus route, new lessons.  He is loving it so far but is realizing that middle school is a lot tougher than elementary!  My 6 year old is now a first grader.  She was itching to go back to school since it ended last June and she couldn't be happier to be back in the classroom.  My two year old is adjusting to having brother and sister gone all day.  She is sooooo happy to see those buses roll up at the end of the day!

My work situation is changing again.  I am still going to be working on campaigns, blogging, etc.  But am now working part time at my gym, which has been a blessing, and I'm working with kids three days a week. I do what I love and what keeps me happy.  Im also doing what is best for my family.  I couldnt be happier or luckier.  Things have fallen in place nicely lately.

My house has been getting organized!  This is one of my favorite things this summer!  I love purging, organizing and cleaning.  Making my home less cluttered and more pretty is a priority of mine.  I have tackled my bedroom, the attic, the garage, the girls' room, the kitchen and now the bathroom.  I will soon plan to paint atleast one or two of those areas, I just have to pick paint colors and possibly designs that I want to put up on the wall.  It is fun, though, to have a vision and complete it all by myself.

Last but not least, I am now moving forward as a single Mom.  This has kept me the busiest of all things this summer.  It isn't easy at all, but this is a step that I will try my hardest to make the most of and do my best at.  Things don't always go as planned, but everything happens for a reason.  I am keeping positive and know I am strong enough to make it through to the other side with a smile on my face.

So that is what's been keeping me busy throughout the summer.  I am sorry for being so far behind on posts, but I will catch up soon.  Thanks for checking in and for being such great followers.  Keep on posting comments, posting to me on Facebook or sending me emails.  I love hearing from all of you!

Monday, August 25, 2014

My Renegade Playground!

 I did it!  And I had a blast.  It was a full team effort, with our team Captain falling back, to make sure that every person on our team crossed that finish line.  We all supported each other, walked when others needed to stop running, and pushed each other when some of us wanted to quit.  We did it.

We were filthy and smiling at the end.  The fun lasted all day, the celebration went into the night and the high that we got from finishing our first race still hasn't worn off.  I'm proud of my whole team and can't wait for our next race!!

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Renegade Playground - My first 5K!

What will YOU be doing this weekend?  I'll be doing this...... 

This Saturday, August 9th, I'll be competing in my first 5K race.  It is a mud obstacle course in my hometown.  I've been working hard towards this for months now and I cannot believe its here.  

As a lot of you already know, I've been working hard on my health and strength for a long time.  Back in January, after almost 3 years of steadily gaining weight, I took my first step and joined a gym.  In February I joined a different gym (Anytime Fitness) and really started to love working out.  I do cardio, weights, and classes such as Surfset ,  Zumba , and Pound fitness.  I have so much fun, have met so many great people and have improved my body and mind a ton.  As of right now, I have lost 36 lbs since January.  I am 5 lbs away from my goal, and the muscles I have now are impressive, if I do say so myself!  

My gym is fantastic, but what makes it even better are the people.  My class instructors, Donna, Carina and Megan have not only trained and pushed me, but they have become my friends.  They have also motivated me to move outside my comfort level.  Megan especially has pushed me to try so many new things and have so many new experiences.  It is not uncommon for her to mention something like a burpee challenge or a 3 minute plank and have me attempt to do it (and sometimes I actually succeed!).  So when she mentioned running a race, I considered it.  Being someone who has never run, I was nervous, but the positivity surrounding me is astounding and so I signed up for the Renegade Playground.  A few good friends also signed up and we are running with a team from the gym.  For most of us, this is our first race.  Im so excited!  

So if you are local, look for my team, The Anytime Wrecking Crew.  We will be running the 9am wave, and will be the ones dolled up in all black and purple.  I'll be prepared to post lots of pictures and a follow up blog post as soon as I can.  Wish me luck!!!  

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Recipe: Jalapeno Popper wontons

  • 8oz Cream Cheese, softened
  • 1 cup monterey jack cheese
  • 1 cup mozzarella cheese
  • 2 cloves of garlic, pressed
  • 2 jalapeno peppers seeded and diced (to make them hotter 3-4 peppers)
  • 1 package 50 count small wonton  wraps
In a bowl, combine the cheeses, cream cheese, garlic and jalapenos. 

 Arrange the wonton wraps in a single layer on a baking sheet.  Add one teaspoon of the filling to each wonton wrap (don't overfill!).  Dip your fingers in water and run your fingers along the edges of each wonton wrap, then fold diagonally.  Pinch the edges, sealing them tightly, and flatten out all bubbles along the edge. Fry the wontons in hot oil until brown and crispy.  Allow to drain and dry on a few paper towels.  Serve warm.   

Monday, July 14, 2014

Relay for Life recap

June 20 and 21st was my biggest weekend of the year.  I was part of the Upper Cape Relay for Life, which is a fundraiser for the American Cancer Society.  All year long I prepare for Relay weekend. I am a captain of the team "Nana's Angels".  We raise money for many loved ones, including in memory of Jackie Crockett, who was the Mom of a lifelong friend of mine, and in support of my Dad, who is an 11 year survivor.

As a whole, the Upper Cape Relay for Life raised $71,208.24 this year.  That is a pretty mind blowing number.  The money raised goes to help people who cannot afford early testing or treatment, get the help that they need.  The Relay For Life helps more people fight cancer and live longer lives.  Celebrating more birthdays is what we, as fundraisers, aim to do.

The Police Officers standing guard during the National Anthem

Kennedy singing the National Anthem

A cancer survivor speaking to the crowd

Luminaria bags line the track

Camp Nana's Angels

The survivor lap

That's my Dad.  He is hope. 

At night, the candles inside the luminaria bags are lit

They stay lit throughout the night, 

lining the track for all of the walkers, walking in support. 

And each year the word "HOPE" is lit up by luminarias on the bleachers. 

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

A little catch up.

I'm so sorry.  I'm way behind on posts.  I promise, I've been very busy preparing meals and crafts to post on here, but it seems lately that every second I get to sit down at the computer (or phone) is sucked up by emails or other business.  Let me tell you a little about what's been new in my life.

First of all, I am heavy into fundraising for the upcoming relay for life.  As some of you know, I try to raise as much money each year to help people battling cancer. My Dad is a survivor and I hope and pray that many more people get to live long happy lives because of the fundraising that I do.  This past weekend we had our big vendor blender to raise money for our cause.  Our team had over 20 vendors come together.  We hired Cinderella to do a meet and greet and photo opportunity.  We had a face painter come.  We had crafts and music. There were lots of raffles.  It was a wonderful day. This coming weekend is our big painting weekend.  We hired an art company to come teach a painting class.  Each person interested has registered to paint with us that night and the company is donating a portion of each registration fee to our fund.  After that, the big weekend is the Relay for Life weekend which takes place on June 20 and 21st.  We will have raffles, games, crafts and lots of other ways to raise as much as we can.

So the next big thing in my life lately is the fact that I have registered for my very first 5K!  It is a little shocking for me to be typing that.  I am doing a mud run/obstacle course in August.  So now my training begins.  And I hate running.  lol  What did I get myself into?!?!  I'm taking my gym time to the next level, training as hard as I can.  Building muscle, running intervals, trying to get my body into decent enough shape. It is hard but I am proud.  I'm feeling great and starting to see improvements in my body.  It's definitely not perfect or even pretty, but its getting stronger!

So bear with me.  I am working hard on making sure I have some pretty clever ideas for you all on the blog soon.  Check back with me often, follow me on Pinterest, and if you haven't already, check me out on Facebook.  I'll be back posting regularly soon!

Friday, May 9, 2014

Because we're happy!

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

Jump, Jump!

Personalize funny videos and birthday eCards at JibJab!

Happy Teacher Appreciation Day! (A love letter to my childrens' teachers)

 I started babysitting when I was 8.  I had my first nanny job at 13.  I taught a lab preschool while I was in High School.  I went on to a few internships at preschools while I was in college.  I graduated from college with a degree in early childhood education, and taught for 5 years.  Then I got a nanny job, then I had my own kids, now I run a nursery program and babysit in my free time.  You could say that my life has revolved around children.  I loved teaching, I adore being around kids.  It really takes a special person to teach children all day, every day.  The pay sucks, but the benefits outweigh the paycheck.  The hugs, the smiles, the fact that you are nurturing and educating this tiny person, someone who may grow up to do amazing things.  Its just the best feeling in the world.  I loved my teaching jobs and I miss them very much.  These days, I am not able to volunteer in my kids' classrooms much, but when I do, the memories of my teaching days come back and I enjoy my time there a ton.  These teachers work so hard.  I am very lucky that both of my older children have very loving and fun teachers.  Their teachers are excited when my children achieve something, or overcome a struggle.  They give them encouragement and cheer them on.  They teach them so much, and I can't thank them enough.  I know how hard it is to be a teacher sometimes.  I know that they have to follow certain guidelines and rules.  I know that in this day and age, they have so much work that they have to teach the children, and little time for fun.  But my kids come home everyday happy and full of stories of how their teachers helped them and made learning fun for them.  I truly love the teachers that my children have.  I wish that I could show them how special they are to me and to my kids.  I wish that I was rich enough to spoil them rotten and show them how much their job is appreciated.

That being said, I'm not rich.  But I did come up with a cute little gift that my kids could hand to their teachers today to show them how much we appreciate all that they do.   I ended up finding this little poem on the computer.    

"Teachers have such busy lives, working hard at school.  They sandwich lots in every day.  We think they're pretty cool.  When students act like turkeys, or ham it up in class, they exercise such patience and handle all the sass.  They never put off 'til tomato what they could do today.  Lettuce appreciate their efforts and help them along the way.  When they're in a pickle, they help each other out.  Teachers are smart cookies.  Of this we have no doubt.  When the chips are down, teachers still pull through.  We want to thank you very much for all the things you do."

I typed it up, putting the lunch references in bold type, and adding little pictures of food.  Then my kids and I took a little trip down to Subway where we bought their teachers gift cards so they could get lunch on us.  Then for the aids in my daughter's kindergarten class, we got them hand sanitizer and hand soaps with a little note from my daughter stating "Hands down, I think you're the best."  We love our teachers, and they give so much of themselves each day.  It is hard work to keep a class of 15-25 kids engaged and interested and happy all day.  My two older kiddos have teachers that give all they have each school day, and it shows.  My kids love school, love their teachers and love the things they learn.  I am so grateful to have two kids who are happy to be getting on a school bus each morning!!!

It's just a little token of our appreciation.  I hope they enjoyed it.  And for all of you out there with kids, I hope you gave those teachers a little token of your appreciation.  Whether it be a small gift, or something large from a group of kids, teachers love to hear that they are appreciated. (Doesn't everybody?!?!)  If you haven't gotten a gift for your teachers, feel free to copy my idea, or find something else on Pinterest that you think your teachers would like.  They work hard and deserve a little treat now and then.  Thank you to all of you teachers out there!!!!  And to Mrs Nilson, Mrs Duffany, Mrs Raber, Mrs G, Miss Beth, Mrs Geist (My son would kill me if I didn't include you!), and all of the other teachers that have helped mold my children into the (mostly) wonderful people they are today, Thank you.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart and my children's hearts.  We appreciate every day you are there and everything you do.  I hope we show it enough how much we truly do appreciate you all.  Thank you!!!  ~S,H,S,A,and little H.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

Mother's Day discount courtesy of Two Smiles Gift cards

The Spring holidays are behind us and Mother's Day is around the corner. Even though this beloved holiday is meant to honor mothers, it seems to add to our to do list as well! Between making brunch reservations, shopping for the other mothers in our lives and coordinating family plans, it's definitely a labor of love. Luckily, there is an occasion for us to take some time for ourselves to celebrate our achievements all year long and it's coming up as well! That's right; it's almost time for National Mom's Nite Out.
On May 8th, mothers everywhere will be getting together in the ultimate celebration of motherhood. And while ALL mothers deserve a night of fun and pampering, we all know other mothers who might be in special need of a celebration this year! Because HP is all about offering easy and innovative solutions to moms and families, they've created a fun and simple way for you to spread the National Mom's Nite Out message to the other moms in your life.
With the specially-created National Mom's Nite Out TwoSmiles card, you can select a perfect gift for another mother, while encouraging her to treat herself to a much-deserved night out. On, you can create a custom greeting card and attach a gift that your recipient will be sure to love- a gift card from one of her favorite retailers! For the ultimate National Mom's Nite Out gift, we suggest sending a friend a movie gift (TwoSmiles offers Fandango, Regal and AMC) so that you can both go see MOMS' NIGHT OUT the movie, which releases on May 9th, 2014. However, this is just one of the many gift options available on you choose the gift that suits your recipient best!
Speaking of gifts, what mom wouldn't love a photo panel or mug? HP Photo Creations is discounting these great gift ideas in honor of National Mom's Nite Out and Mother's Day. Check out the great selection here and use the code HPTY to receive 40% off your photo panel or mug order from now until May 31st. Feel free to share the code with your friends and followers as well!
Whether you're thanking a friend for picking up your extra carpool days or brightening the day of a fellow mother who's had a tough week, the National Mom's Out card on or an HP Photo Creations gift is sure to strike the right sentiment.

Wishing you a wonderful National Mom's Nite Out and a Happy Mother's Day!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

"They like me. They really like me!!!"

Am I dating myself with the above quote?  Google it, kiddos, if you don't know it already.  

I've been nominated for a Liebster award! Out of all the blogs she must read and follow, My friend Jasmine over at FleurtyandFit nominated my little blog for a Liebster award. And I am SO grateful!!   The Liebster is an award for bloggers, by bloggers.  It's a way to discover new blogs, promote each other, and recognize each other's awesomeness! In Order to accept the award, you must follow a few rules..... 
1. you must link back to the person who nominated you 
2. you must answer the 10 Liebster questions given to you by the nominator
3. you must pick 10 bloggers to be nominated for the award (with a small following)
4. you must create 10 questions for your nominees
5. you must notify your nominees

My questions from Jasmine:
1.  What was the first blog you ever read? Mark is one of my oldest, dearest friends, and he posted the most interesting, funny stuff!  I wish he'd blog again.  Plllleeeeeaaasssseeee???  
2. What are your top five pins on Pinterest? My Protein balls, my turkey and cheese pinwheels, Franks crockpot chicken,   my stuffed mushrooms, and my garlic and meatball dumplings 
3. What is your go to easy recipe for dinner each week? Bacon wrapped chicken bites. Recipe HERE
4. What is your favorite social media site? Facebook, IG, Twitter, others? Facebook and Instagram! 
5. Where do you see your blog in 1 year? 5 years? 10 years? Oh gosh, that's a tough one.  I'd love to be doing what I'm doing now but with way more followers.  Blogging can be so time consuming, so maybe I could be making more money off of it then, but still doing what I love, cooking, crafting and creating with my kids, and still living a fairly healthy lifestyle and being an inspiration to others.  
6. What is your favorite thing to do for fun? Play with my family.  Doesn't matter if we are at a playground, playing a board game, riding bikes, swimming, it's all fun with them.  
7. Who is your best friend?  I have two.  Jaime and I have been best friends since we were 10.  She moved away 10 years ago but through years and miles apart, she has been at my side. She is the Godmother to my children and my unbiological sister.  I couldnt ask for a better female bestie.  Billy is stuck with me forever.  He was my ex-Fiance's best friend, and when we broke up, Billy stuck by me.  He can make me laugh like no other and is my kids' Godfather.  Jaime and Billy aren't just best friends, they are family.  And I'm so blessed to have them.  
8. How do you promote your blog?  Mostly on Facebook.  An occasional shout out on IG, and numerous Pinterest pins.  And word of mouth has been my best support so far.  
9. What is your favorite Disney Movie? The Jungle Book or Toy Story or Bedknobs and Broomsticks and I could pick a dozen more!  
10. If you could go on vacation anywhere in the world, with unlimited funds--where would you go?  Disney again.  My family had so much fun when we went back in March.  And then maybe Aruba.  And I'd love to take my family to Portugal to see my roots.  

Now I nominate:
The ladies over at
Jannelle over at Sweet Connolly
katie over at
Ellen at Designing Main Street
Alison over at  
Miranda at MP Photography 
Cara over at
Mark at Marks News 
The ladies over at
NatSpencer over at
Melissa over at 
Now, my questions for you are:
1.  What was your life goal when you were a kid?
2.  If you could move anywhere in the world, where would it be? 
3.  What is your favorite book? 
4.  If you could eat one thing every day without any negative side effects, what would it be? 
5.  Is there anything you feel like you've failed at? 
6. What is your dream job? 
7. You have a Saturday morning to yourself.  No work, no schedules, no deadlines.  What do you do? 
8. Who has been your biggest inspiration? 
9. What is the weirdest thing about you, in your opinion? 
10.  What do you wish you could do? 

Thank you so much, Jasmine!!!!  

Ohhhhh fuuuuuudgggggge

As you know, I'm always on the lookout for new ways to make recipes a little, or a lot, healthier.  I have a wicked sweet tooth and love my chocolate.  A friend posted a recipe very similar to this and it looked so yummy.  I'm always trying to make sweet recipes with a healthy kick.  Sometimes these recipes work, sometimes they don't.  Fortunately, this one totally works.  Its a "healthy" candy.  Definitely NOT healthy, by any means, but it has fiber, high protein, and probably lower sugar and fat than most fudge and candy out there.  And it is delicious.  REALLY delicious.  Here we go.

1 cup peanut butter (I used 1/2 cup Jif, 1/2 cup Nuts 'n More high protein no sugar Toffee flavored peanut butter)
2/3 cup honey (Mine is local!)
1/2 cup coconut oil
2 cups of oats, not instant
1 1/4 cups chocolate chips (I used the same amount in crushed up dark Hershey's chocolate because that is what I had on hand)
3/4 cup of any other toppings that you choose.  I picked peanuts.  You could use almonds, dried cranberries, coconut, sunflower seeds, etc)


Melt together the peanut butter, coconut oil and honey in a saucepan over medium heat.  Remove from heat when fully melted together and add the oats, chocolate chips and toppings.  Stir until combined and the chocolate chips are fully melted.  Spread into a 9x13 pan.  Refrigerate until hardened, about an hour.  Store in the refrigerator.

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Our Gabba party

My little one turned 2!  I can't believe it.  Time flies so fast, and it seems it goes even faster with each child.  The past two years have been so extremely busy but so outrageously fun.  My little one is a bundle of energy.  She is a little wild woman.  She is petite in stature but her personality is HUGE!  She can certainly run the house and boss the big kids around.  She is my little dynamo, a tiny terror, and my sweet baby girl, all in one.  And can we talk about her hair?  I mean come on, how awesome is this?!?!

Her favorite things these days are Frozen, Mickey and Minnie Mouse and Yo Gabba Gabba.  Since my older daughter also had a Gabba party when she turned 2, we decided to go with the same theme.  The planning began and soon I hit a brick wall when it came to decorations and party supplies.  Even though you can order the Gabba party stuff online, the local stores all had their Gabba Gabba items discontinued a while back.  So pickings were slim. Of course I took this as a challenge and was able to improvise a lot.  And we had a blast at the party!

I was able to find a lot of Yo Gabba Gabba wall decorations,

some napkins and the candles but I ended up making a lot of the table decorations.  Buckets to hold the snacks,

The yellow bucket said "Plex mix" on it, with a homemade Chex mix that had all of my daughter's favorite snacks inside, the green one said "Brobee Booty" with Pirate Booty, and the red said "Muno's Munchies" and had blue corn chips from Food Should Taste Good.  The pink bucket didn't say anything, it just had Foofa's signature flower, and it held Food Should Taste Good's yellow corn tortilla chips.  

 the 2 table centerpiece which I made here

and the juice containers were turned into Gabba characters easily.

 I had homemade Foofa flowers, too.  

The cake was made by my wonderful friend who owns Cape Cakes by Kristen.  Check her out here.  She makes all sorts of cakes, cupcakes, cocktail cupcake shots and she can ship her cake pops across the country.  I highly recommend her!  

The top layer was all strawberry and the bottom was chocolate, as requested by my little one, with an oreo buttercream filling. 

And that dress my daughter was wearing?  It was a sheet from my older daughter's Yo Gabba Gabba toddler bed.   We had it made by my good friend Candice, who also made my daughters' Christening gown out of my wedding dress.  We are VERY lucky to have such talented friends.  

And for your viewing pleasure, Im adding a couple of my favorite pictures.  Last year, as we were wrapping up my daughter's 1st birthday celebration, we captured this on camera. 

One of my closest friends, Mark,  fell in love with the picture, had it blown up to poster size, and shipped it out to us.  We have had it hanging up over my daughter's crib ever since.  The night of her birthday, we decided to pull the picture down and try to get her to make the same face.  This was the best shot we got, and it's a doozy! 

I crack up everytime I see it.  Although she isnt making the same face, her hands are almost in the exact same positions, and that was something we didn't even try to get her to do.  We laugh all the time over this picture and can't wait to try to re-create it again next year!