Friday, May 18, 2018

Hood Calorie Countdown Cook Off

Growing up I always pretended I was talking to a crowd when I cooked, I loved helping my mom in the kitchen and cooking for my baby dolls. When I went to high school, I took culinary and hospitality all four years. After graduating, I went to UCF to major in event management with a minor in culinary. I ended up changing my major to education, however, I love cooking and love having dinner parties where I can show off all my new recipes. 

I was invited this month to participate in a cook off with Hood Calorie Countdown. I have used their milk in previous recipes on the blog here and here, but a cook off was something new! I went back and forth about what to make, going from biscuits and gravy to a favorite of mine cauliflower alfredo. I ended up settling on something completely different, but was a sure winner in my family--Coconut Pudding. I used Hood Calorie Countdown whole milk in my recipe to take out some of the calories, but still have all the yum factor. 

Hood has always had great products for the family, and Calorie Countdown is definitely one of them! I love that I'm only purchasing one dairy beverage for the whole family and cutting calories, but none of the nutrients we all need. Hood Calorie Countdown is creamy and has a delicious taste, and keeps the kiddos coming back for more.

Hood Calorie Countdown is a ultra filtered dairy beverage that is offered in Whole, 2%, Fat Free, and Chocolate--there is even an option for 2% Reduced Fat Chocolate. It contains 42% less calories, 75% less sugar, and 67% fewer carbs. The milk comes from farmers who have pledged not to use artificial growth hormones, this is something I try and search for when I am buying food items for my family. 

I decided on Coconut Pudding because of its light taste, and the quick summer months approaching. It went perfectly with cut up fruit and some fresh made granola. I used the Hood Calorie Countdown whole milk to substitute for the whole milk, and added that with coconut milk. I had originally used coconut sugar, but like the look of the white sugar. However, if I made it for myself to enjoy--I would add back in the coconut sugar. This was a quick dessert that I would definitely make for a summer bbq or just a family dinner. 

What would you use Hood Calorie Countdown in?

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Going Brandless with Organic Cheese Ducks Crackers

It doesn't matter how much I feed my kids at breakfast, lunch, or dinner, they always end up hungry in between. I'm always grabbing something out of the pantry to keep them happy while I cook the next meal. Two growing boys require lots of food and I'm always on the search for budget friendly snacks that are also Non-GMO or organic. I recently came across Brandless, and was amazing as the variety of products they offered and at such a low cost. I can purchase all of my every day needs from organic to health and beauty products on one website for only $3 for each item! 

We received a box from Brandless and the first thing my kids grabbed were the Organic Cheese Duck Crackers. These delicious crackers are certified USDA organic, and contain no artificial flavors or preservatives and are non-GMO. When I tasted the crackers, I was shocked at how great the flavor was, and new this would be an instant win with the kids. They noticed no difference from the big name brands, and actually asked for the ducks over the other cheese crackers we had. We have brought these crackers everywhere from lunches to beach trips, and they make the perfect little snack! For as fast as we go through cheese crackers in this family. I will take them at $3 and a big box delivered free right to my door! 

Brandless has created an online marketplace for you to shop for your food and household products from the comfort of your own home. When you are shopping a national brand you have to pay a BrandTax, which is a hidden cost these brands pay. With Brandless, you eliminate that tax and just pay for the high quality item that you want--$3 will get you any item! I love that I can find anything that my family needs at Brandless and can meet any of our dietary needs including gluten free, sugar free, Non-GMO, and organic. 

If you're ready to get your first Brandless box I have an exclusive code for you to get 30% off a years B. More Membership. Another great thing about Brandless? Every time you place a Brandless order, a meal is donated to people facing hunger through Feeding America®. In the 6 months that Brandless has been operating, they have already donated 250K meals! Find more about Brandless on their social media sites, and go shop Brandless

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Teaching Your Kids to Swim with Swimways

    This post was sponsored by SwimWays as part of an Ambassador Program for Influence Central and all opinions expressed in my post are my own.

    It may still be spring, but it sure feels like summer. We are living it up, and are so ready for the long summer nights and weekends spent all day by the pool. I remember as a kid, we started in swim lessons and began to swim at such a young age. Our days were filled by the pool, where my sister and I would pretend to be mermaids splashing about. When my son was born I knew I had to get him involved in swim, and we did at just 3 months old!

    I found it so very important to teach my little ones to swim at such an early age, as there are pools, lakes, and bodies of water all around. We began at a simple water babies class, then went on to a parent tot class, and a then to a group class of about 4 kiddos. I find it very important, even if you don't live near a body of water--to teach your kiddos how to swim. At some point in their life they will be near a body of water and can save their lives. 

    When at home, I love using the SwimWays Baby Spring Float Activity Center with my babies and allowing them to explore the water. This May, I'm partnering with SwimWays, who is an industry leader in helping children learn to swim. I'm here to tell you about National Learn to Swim Day coming up on May 19th, that was created by SwimWays in 2012 to educate parents and kids about water safety and the benefits of teaching your children to swim

    I have used the SwimWays Spring Baby Float Activity Center every year since my littles were born. It is the perfect float for babies 9-24 months and is the #1 selling baby float in the U.S. I have always loved that is has a large spring for added stability, and the canopy for our Florida sun is a definite plus! My little ones have always loved splashing in the mesh play space, that allow for toys. It then folds up into a compact carry bag. 

    I love having the SwimWays Baby Spring Float Activity Center for when I am working with my older son on his swimming skills. I don't have to worry about my little guy jumping in on his own, and he can kick himself all around the pool with us. He loves the interactive octopus play station, that keeps him busy when his brother wants all the attention. Including a squeaker, rattle, stacking rings, teether, and a soft touch star. 

    I love that we can use this SwimWays Baby Spring Float year after year for friends, family, and even my own baby. Grab yours SwimWays Baby Spring Float at Activity Center at Target or the Canopy Baby Spring Float here

    Monday, May 7, 2018

    Mother's Day Subscription Gift Guide

    This Mother's Day give your mom the gift that keeps on giving. 

    I know I've talked about my love for holidays before. I love giving gifts, and these are some of my favorite mother's day gifts--the ones that keep on giving. These gifts show up in the mailbox monthly to remind them how special they are, or my favorite, a grocery delivery service which comes weekly in my case. There is something for every mother, but I have rounded up my favorites. 
    © The View From Up Here. Made with love by The Dutch Lady Designs.