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March 18th, 2013 | 6:00 AM
POSH Mommy has mastered the art of customized jewelry for moms, dads, and kids.
Founder, Ali Krebs, is a mother of two who self-funded the company utilizing her personal experience and BA in Business Administration. Her husband suggested including birthstones in her jewelry, which was the first – of many – major hits. For two years, Ali handcrafted thousands of designs at home, and customers wanted more. She then partnered with Stuller, Inc. – the largest jewelry manufacturer in the world – to transform her jewelry into a high-end line. Now, POSH Mommy is sold internationally to over 40,000 stores; is worn by celebrity parents like Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck, Heidi Klum, and Nicole Kidman; and has been featured in InStyle, Us Weekly, on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, and more.
Ali has expanded their Northern California headquarters to include other stylish, savvy moms. Together, they work to deliver you the best assortment of customizable jewelry, along with outstanding customer service. All of POSH Mommy’s designs are tarnish-resistant and made of sterling silver or 14K gold. They can also accommodate special requests for rose gold, 18K gold vermeil, and even genuine stones like sapphires and diamonds.
Today, we’re offering an exclusive discount for 30% off anything on POSH Mommy’s website when you use the code POSH30 (good for 10 days only). It feels good to wear your family’s names close to your heart – and they love seeing it on you!
Beat hunger with these easy recipes!
January 18th, 2013 | 6:00 AM
Life as a busy mom becomes a lot more difficult when you’ve got hungry kids on your hands. Feed yourself and your family these tasty and wholesome, on-the-go snacks before crankiness and irritability kick in!
Baked Apple Chips (Recipe)
You can also dress them up with a sprinkling of cinnamon and/or sugar.
Breakfast Parfait (Recipe)
Use a plastic cup or a mason jar (if you need a lid), and prepare this the night before.
In the morning, all you have to do is add granola, or keep plastic baggies of granola on hand to go – and don’t forget a spoon!
If you’re interested in making your own granola, check out this recipe from Food Network chef, Alton Brown. It’s the most delicious, straightforward granola recipe we’ve tried.
Combine your favorite nuts, dried fruits (even yogurt-covered raisins), and some pretzel bites, and you’ve got yourself a crowd-pleasing snack to keep everyone munching in silence.
Whole Wheat Spinach-Turkey Wrap
Apply your favorite spread (mustard, hummus, pesto, etc), to a whole wheat tortilla, layer on turkey (or meat of choice), and add spinach, tomato, or your favorite veggies.
Show the kids how to peel back the foil as they eat for a mess-free car.
Celery and Peanut Butter Jar
Also try this with apples instead of celery — or combine veggie sticks with hummus.
Mini Snack Buffet
Grab an empty ice cube tray and load it up with a colorful array of nutrition.
Strawberry-Banana Smoothie (Recipe)
Serve this in a mason jar with a handle, and hit the road!
Try swapping out bananas and strawberries for other fruits, like frozen mango, peaches, blueberries, blackberries, and raspberries.
Butterfly Snack Bag
How cute is this?!
Fill up your butterfly bag with trail mix, blueberries, baby carrots, dried fruits, and your kids’ favorite snacks.
Time-saving and effective ways to stay in shape throughout the new year.
January 11th, 2013 | 9:32 AM
You may regret eating that cookie, but you won’t regret spending time on a good workout, Mom.
Getting your blood flowing and muscles working goes a long way: it prevents weight gain (or aids weight loss), combats health conditions and diseases, promotes quality sleep, boosts your energy, and improves your mood. So if you’re feeling overwhelmed or unhappy, dedicate a few minutes to moving your body!
If you don’t have one hour to work up a sweat, you’ve at least got 15 minutes – and a short workout is better than no workout.
We’ve put together some simple, time-saving, and effective tips to help you keep fitness a priority in the new year:
- Find out what motivates you: Whether it’s an upcoming reunion, a swimsuit you’ve got your eye one for summer, or the need to keep up with your active kiddos, figure out what it is that will get you moving, and keep it in mind.
- Pre-plan: Set yourself up for success! Each Sunday, make sure to schedule workouts on your calendar and stock up on plenty of healthy foods and on-the-go snacks (such as raw nuts, apples, carrots, and greek yogurt cups).
- Find a gym with childcare: And consider switching to another gym if yours doesn’t offer it. When your kids are in good hands (and nearby), you can focus your full attention on achieving your fitness goals.
- Work out at home: Who said house cleaning doesn’t qualify as working out? A good hour of scrubbing, sweeping, and polishing windows - at a brisk pace - is good for you. Put on your workout clothes and go at it! When you’re done, squeeze in this all-over body exercise for a complete workout.
- PLAY with Your Kids: Race them, be the tagger, and twirl them around in your arms. Your mind and body will thank you.
- Revisit four tried-and-true exercises: Squats, push-ups, lunges, and planks. Master these moves (in good form) and you’ll be able to squeeze in a quick, effective workout that targets all of your major muscles. Do back-to-back circuits in the morning before you shower – it’s a great way to energize for the day!
- Keep your workout bag with you: You never know when you’ll get a break in your busy schedule. Make it easy to hit the gym or outdoor trail when you want to and have time.
Once you’ve got a good workout routine, you’ll love the way you look and feel. Keep it up, and you’ll notice improved performance in other areas of your life, too. Here’s to a healthier, happier you in 2013!
You can't go wrong with these, Mom.
December 14th, 2012 | 6:00 AM
When the weather outside is frightful and your family wants something delightful, pop some corn, hit the lights, and snuggle up with a heart-warming Christmas classic.
We’ve asked all of you Plum moms to list your favorite Christmas movies for kids, and here are the top six!
First, the oldies but goodies:
Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer (1964)
A Christmas classic every child should see.
Introduce them to Rudolph, a reindeer once made fun of for his unusual, luminous red nose, who ends up leading Santa’s sleigh during a harsh winter and gains exceptional recognition. Go Rudolph!
A Christmas Story (1983)
The much-loved Christmas comedy about 9-year-old Ralphie Parker who has to convince his parents, teachers, and Santa that a Red Ryder BB Gun is the perfect gift for him.
You can catch this one on TBS at this time of the year – it’s a hit!
Home Alone (1990)
“Ahhhhhhh!” Can you imagine your family accidentally leaving you behind while on the way to Paris for the holidays? As you know, Kevin McCallister experiences just that – and to make matters worse, he’s faced with two idiotic burglars who try to break into his house. Fortunately, this clever eight-year-old outwits the burglars with a series of ingenious booby traps.
No matter how many times you’ve seen this one, it doesn’t get old. Share one of your holiday film favorites with your kids. It’s just so entertaining!
And now, some more recent films that have gained tremendous popularity:
The Polar Express (2004)
In this computer-animated fantasy film, a young boy (voiced by the one-and-only Tom Hanks) wants to believe in Santa Claus but questions his existence.
On Christmas Eve, he hops aboard the magical Polar Express and takes a ride to the North Pole to find out the truth!
Your little ones will be fascinated by this classic story told through a beautifully-made, high-tech film.
Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas (2000)
(Promoted theatrically as The Grinch)
It’s no surprise that this is the second highest-grossing holiday film of all time (right behind Home Alone). Jim Carrey takes the lead as the Grinch, a cynical creature who despises Christmas and wants to kill the holiday spirit. In the end, the Grinch’s true colors are shown.
This one’s got to be on your kid’s holiday movie list – and throw the original, animated version from 1966 on there, too, because they’re both great.
Delightful, hilarious, and starring Will Ferrel, this Christmas comedy will engage all the kids and adults in your house!
Buddy is one of Santa’s elves who happens to be incredibly large and ungainly. He learns of his true identity as a human and heads to NYC to meet his biological father who, incidentally, is on the naughty list.
On his adventures, Buddy spreads Christmas cheer in a world of cynics – and the contrast between his attitude and theirs is just too good.
Grab a blanket and spread it across the whole family. These wonderful films are a great way to enjoy some cozy evenings this holiday season.
Before the show starts, enjoy a scrumptious meal with one of today’s Plum deals for fresh Maryland crab or organic meats, cheeses, and more. And for dessert? Whip up one of our favorite holiday sweets or surrender to the goodness of smooth, homemade fudge. Bon appetit and happy viewing!
Share these crowd pleasers at a holiday event, dinner party, or wrap them up as gifts!
December 7th, 2012 | 6:18 AM
One thing we love about the holidays? The never-ending flow of delectable sweets to our doorstep, kitchen table, under the Christmas tree… and ultimately, to our tummy. This year, delight your friends and family with holiday goodies unlike the rest. We’re excited to share some of our favorite, easy recipes that are perfect for all those holiday events and gift-giving. Send some to school with your kid to share with the class!
Chocolate Caramel Pretzel Bites (Recipe)
These guys are much easier to make than it seems.
All you need is four simple ingredients: store-bought caramels, a bag of pretzel nuggets, semisweet chocolate, and almonds.
Dress them up with the holiday sprinkle colors of your choice! Red and green for Christmas, blue and white for Hanukkah… you get the idea.
Gingerbread Cupcakes (Recipe)
The holidays call for gingerbread. Gingerbread cookies, gingerbread houses, gingerbread lattes…. this seasonal flavor is all around you to enjoy.
When you’re looking to get your gingerbread fix, but want to lighten the load of sugar and fat, pull out this relatively healthy recipe from Weight Watchers and bake away!
Using whole wheat flour, applesauce, molasses, and a medley of spices like ginger, cinnamon, and allspice, these fluffy cakes are sure to satisfy your holiday sweet tooth.
English Toffee (Recipe)
A holiday classic. Who doesn’t love the crunchy, smooth richness of this heavenly dessert?
Get your hands on six ingredients (which you probably already have at home), and you’re set to go.
This recipe calls for white sugar, chocolate chips, walnuts, butter, vanilla, and a pinch of salt.
Christmas Tree Rice Krispie Pops (Recipe)
How cute are these? Kids (and adults) love these festive, easy-to-eat treats on a stick. They’re also mess-free, so no need to worry about wiping and washing your hands, or licking your fingers after.
Make rice krispie treats as you normally would, add green food coloring to the melted marshmallows, and once the treats are cooled, use cookie cutters, lollipop sticks, and colored candies to finish them off.
Celebrating a different holiday? Choose a different cookie cutter and colors.
Cinnamon-Chocolate Ganache Hanukkah Cookies (Recipe)
Adapted from The Ultimate Cookie Book (Wiley, 2007), these delicious holiday cookies are oh-so-pretty with their six points and powdered surface.
A tantalizing combination of chocolate, cinnamon, and smooth ganache, these cookies are impressive to say the least.
Bake ‘em, cool ‘em, and sandwich the creamy ganache between two cookies. They’ll be a hit!
Note: Like the rice krispie recipe above, you can switch up the cookie cutters depending on the holiday you’re celebrating!
Peanut Butter Pretzel Bites (Recipe)
A combination of our favorite flavors. These holiday bites are so festive, fun… and creative!
The ingredients are simple (again, you probably have most of it in your pantry already): creamy peanut butter, softened butter, powdered sugar, brown sugar, pretzels, and chocolate chips!
Grab this easy recipe to get started on a dessert that’ll bring a smile to everyone.
Get your kids to join you in the kitchen, and make memories while you make these holiday sweets. And, while you’re waiting for the them to cool, give yourself a fab at-home, salon-like gel manicure for that upcoming event!
Affordable pieces that'll have you looking effortlessly gorgeous!
August 7th, 2012 | 11:52 AM
Ahh, those flowy, breezy, summer dresses. They’re lovely, so comfortable to wear, and signify our favorite warm-weather, vacation season. You probably have at least one more getaway planned before the busy school year kicks in, and I’ve done a little research to help you find a couple more chic pieces for your summer wardrobe. When it’s vacation time, we like to simplify our routines; throw on one of these dresses in the morning and you’re set to go! No need to spend time piecing together an ensemble when you could be relaxing with your family.
Here are five classic, practical dresses – all under $100, I might add – to meet your getaway fashion needs:
Heather Maxi Tube Skirt/Dress by Splendid: $88 at ShopBop.com.
Simple, convertible, and can be worn with a favorite top!
Highline Strip Blouson Maxi Dress: $98 at Piperlime.Gap.com.
Look elegant and comfortable during the day, straight through the night.
Ruched Tie-Waist Dress by Old Navy: $24.94 at OldNavy.Gap.com.
Available in classic navy and a fun, bright orange for a price that can’t be beat.
Ponte Shift Dress by Tinley Road: $59 at Piperlime.Gap.com.
Such a lovely, chic piece for the evening. Comes in three colors! Spice it up with a favorite piece of jewelry.
Zig Zag Print Asymmetrical Dress by Mossimo: $22 at Target.com.
Flirty, fun, and berry-colored! Huge plus: it won’t break the bank.
Enjoy these wonderful dresses while the weather’s warm, and feel good knowing that you don’t need to spend an arm and leg to expand your wardrobe with great options.
Beautify your tresses and help a child get the hair he or she deserves
May 31st, 2012 | 11:08 AM
You’ve heard of Locks of Love. It’s a not-for-profit organization that provides the highest quality wigs to children with medical hair loss. These children do not have the money to spend $3,500-$6,000 on a wig (the normal retail price), and Locks of Loves gives them custom-made, incredibly natural-looking hairpieces for free. The majority of recipients have hair loss due to an auto-immune condition known as Alopecia Areata, and others suffer from severe burns, radiation treatment, and other dermatological conditions. Locks of Love hairpieces are in high demand, and each takes four months to make.
Today, 10% of the proceeds from your purchase of our Friday Fundraiser offers will go to to Locks of Love to help a child in need. The following local and national deals have partnered with us to support this great cause. Be sure to buy in the next few days so that your $$ benefits a child who needs it.
NuMeStyle.com (online – available in all regions) – Plum District Offer: $30 for $130 Worth of Hair Styling Tools and Hair Extensions from NuMe
Elaine’s Salon, Fishers, IN — Plum District Offer: $35 for a Haircut from Expert Stylist Mark Starnes – $75 Value
Plum Studios Salon, Burlingame, CA – Plum District Offers: $50 for $100 Worth of Hair Services from Stylist Showkat Fallahi OR $70 for Full Highlights ($140 Value) or $150 for a Brazilian Blowout (a $300 Value) with Kate Lawson
Green Alley Salon, Austin, TX – Plum District Offer: $15 for a Blowout, $35 Deva Curl Cut, or $70 for Partial Highlights – Up to $170 Value
Studio 4 Salon, Newport Beach, CA – Plum District Offer: $45 for a Shampoo, Haircut, Kerastase Treatment, and a Blow + Style from Eddie- a $120 Value
Bang Salon, Denver, CO – Plum District Offer: $20 for $40 OR $35 for $70 Toward Salon Hair Services from Bang Salon
P2 Studios, Highlands Ranch, CO – Plum District Offer: 50% Off Hair Services for Men and Women (a great Father’s Day gift)
Keep Austin Gorgeous, Austin, TX — Plum District Offer: $30 for a Shampoo, Haircut and Style – a $60 Value
Crunchy, perfectly sweetened granola that can be modified to include your favorite ingredients!
May 28th, 2012 | 9:39 PM
It’s hard to find a great-tasting granola that isn’t loaded with fat and sugar. And often times, the good stuff costs an arm and leg.
Here’s an easy recipe that’ll leave you with a batch that’s full of flavor, crunchy, clumpy, perfectly sweetened, and low in fat. I made it the other day and my family loved it (it hardly lasted three days).
- 4 cups of rolled oats
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 2 egg whites
- 1/4 cup vegetable oil
- 1/3 cup honey
- 2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup pecans, chopped
- 1/2 cup sliced almonds
- 1/2 cup walnuts, chopped
- 2 teaspoons cinnamon
- 1 cup of dried cherries
- Preheat oven to 300 F.
- Spray two baking sheets with non-stick cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, mix together the rolled oats, nuts, cinnamon, and salt.
- In a separate bowl, whisk the egg whites, oil, honey, and vanilla for about 45 seconds. Pour mixture on top of the dry ingredients.
- Mix wet and dry ingredients together until the wet evenly coats the dry.
- Split the granola evenly between two baking sheets, making a doughnut shape with no granola in the center (this shape allows the granola to bake evenly). Pat down the granola with your hands or the back of a spatula.
- Bake granola in pre-heated oven for 30-35 minutes, or until golden brown, rotating the baking sheets about halfway through the baking time.
- Let granola sit for about 35-40 minutes, or until room temperature, before breaking into clumps. Gently mix in the dried cherries (adding the dried fruit after baking prevents it from becoming hard and too dry).
- Store in an airtight container.
Other dried fruits to consider: raisins, dried blueberries, dried raspberries, and dried cranberries.
Other nuts to consider: cashews, hazelnuts, pistachios, and macadamia nuts.
Other spices and extracts to consider: nutmeg, cardamom, and maple extract.
You can also add seeds, like flax or sesame!
Bake your own batch of granola so that you can control everything that goes in it. You just might start a new family tradition! I suggest you make it over the weekend so that you can enjoy it throughout the week. This is a great activity for your kids to be a part of, and it can even be used as a gift for your neighbor! Sprinkle it on top of greek yogurt for a healthy breakfast or great snack.
(The original Have-It-Your-Way Granola recipe was found online at Confessions of a Bright Eyed Baker – www.brighteyedbaker.com)
Take your summer BBQ to the next level with some thick, delicious sauces that'll jazz up your favorite meat and vegetable dishes
May 21st, 2012 | 9:53 PM
Our first recipe comes from Stephanie Graney, a District Consultant who lives in Huntington Beach, California with her two daughters and husband.
Gluten-Free Balsamic BBQ Sauce:
- 1 cup balsamic vinegar
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
- 3/4 cup tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
Combine all the ingredients in a small saucepan and stir until all are blended well and the mixture is smooth. Simmer mixture over medium to low heat until reduced by 1/3 – about 15 to 20 minutes. Brush onto chicken, steak, or sausage, and grill or broil in the oven. This sauce can also be lightly brushed onto veggies. Looking for a tasty appetizer? Make the sauce, add sliced chicken sausage to it, and heat simmer until sausage is heated through. Serve with toothpicks.
Our second recipe comes from Deb Clem, a Regional Manager in Kansas City. Deb is mom to Rosie (11) and absolutely loves BBQ. Deb likes her meats rubbed, then slow cooked and topped with a tomato-based sauce. She has kept her BBQ sauce a secret… until now.
Deb’s Secret KC BBQ Sauce:
- 2 cups of Ketchup
- 1/3 cup cider vinegar
- 1/3 cup brown sugar
- 2 1/4 tablespoons mustard (not powdered)
- Dash of hot sauce
- Tablespoon of a good dry rub
- 1/3 tablespoon of black pepper
Follow the same directions as the recipe above.
Skip the bottled sauces and impress your family and guests with these smokin’ hot recipes. They’re easy to make and will add a scrumptious new flavor to your summer BBQ dishes.
(Interested in checking out Deb’s blog? Visit http://debcb.com/)
It's not always easy to get a good shot. And sometimes we look back and simply say, "Why?"
May 21st, 2012 | 8:10 AM
A few of our good staff members here at Plum District have kindly volunteered to share theirs for your enjoyment — because after all, we’re all family, right?
The photo above comes from Kerri Roggensack, a District Consultant who lives in Lafayette, California. Kerri is mother to three daughters: Clara (6), Sisi (5), and Lenie (3). In this photo, Clara (wearing the orange dress) is held by Kerri’s husband, Claus, on Halloween.
I’m curious about the person in the middle… a classic costume, I must say!
Next, we have a shot from Kate Goepferd, a Plum District Site Manager. Kate’s comment on this one? “A little bit country, a little bit embarrassed.”
The following comes from Deb Clem-Buckert, a Regional Manager in Kansas City, who’s mother to Rosie (11). This photo was taken circa 1976, and Deb (bottom right, in red) says it was one of the more awkward family moments she can remember. Let’s just say that an unpleasant smell overcame the room right before the shot.
Last but certainly not least, we have a photo from Suzanne Allen-Weise, a District Consultant from West Chester, Pennsylvania. Suzanne is mom to five delightful children (between ages 8 and 14) who were, more or less, willing to grant her her birthday wish last year for one more Santa photo. Clearly, they were thrilled. How does Suzanne feel about this picture? It’s exactly what she expected, and she thinks it’s perfect.
You can’t always get everyone to cooperate when the time comes for a family photo. The “perfect” shot is rare. Really, though, some of the best photos have each family member doing his or her own thing. At the end of the day, when hold the photo, at least you can smile about the fact that you brought the crew together and made some memories.
If you have an awkward family photo you’d like to share – and are willing to have it posted to our blog – please leave a comment and we’ll contact you! The more, the merrier. We love family photos.