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Disclaimer:  Kraft Foods and I have partnered up again this year and I’m excited to announce a paid ambassadorship with Capri Sun, which included a all-expense paid trip with Capri Sun at Kraft Headquarters in Chicago. All opinions are my own.

Capri Sun Ambassador

In 2014, some of you may remember a little trip I took to New York City in the middle of a crazy snowstorm. That New York trip was the first experience I had in getting to know the people behind Capri Sun. By the time I left, it was clear Capri Sun was interested in what parents thought, and they had made a big announcement……a new clear bottom pouch, in response.

Since then, the team behind Capri Sun has become like family and I’m proud to announce that I’m a brand ambassador for Capri Sun. I have always loved the classic Capri Sun Juice Drinks but more than that, I’ve come to know the team. They are moms and dads too. They care about my daughter and your kids too.

And guess what? They are STILL listening to us.

In fact, I was invited on another press trip with Capri Sun, this time to the Windy City of Chicago. And just like the last, there was a big announcement. One that shows Capri Sun cares and has been listening all along.

Drum Roll please………..

Capri Sun No High Fructose Corn Syrup

Now….Capri Sun has ALWAYS had:

  • No artificial preservatives
  • No artificial colors and
  • No artificial flavors

But now they’ve gone further……..Capri Sun now has NO HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP!

They proudly have invested $50 million in this project and I couldn’t be happier.

Though it’s more expensive for Capri Sun, they are replacing high fructose corn syrup with sugar in its original line of Capri Sun juice drinks and replacing sucralose with stevia in the Capri Sun Roarin’ Waters Flavored Water Beverage.

FACT: By doing this Capri Sun is taking more than 25 billion calories out of the marketplace annually.

I had to tell you the big news first, but my stay in Chicago was simply amazing and included a tour of Kraft Headquarters. Upon arrival, I was whisked off to The Drake Hotel.

The Drake Hotel

Simply stunning both inside and out, The Drake Hotel was the perfect place to relax for the night.

The Drake Hotel View

And in keeping with tradition, it snowed in Chicago while I was there – just not near as much as it had last year in NYC. Isn’t my view from breakfast amazing? That is Lake Michigan!

The next morning I was headed, along with many other fabulous bloggers from around the country, to Kraft Headquarters (aka KraftTown), located in Northfield, Illinois, just outside of Chicago.

It was clear that we had arrived by what we saw. This was not your ordinary office building.

Kraft Headquarters Oscar Mayer

I know you are singing the song now, right?

Kraft Headquarters Cheese

I’m betting this is a replica but it just takes you back in time.

Kraft Headquarters Mr Planters

Do you recognize this guy?

I couldn’t resist taking a selfie with Mr. Peanut!

#CapriSunCrew at Kraft Headquarters

It was cold but we had to pose for a picture or two.

Kraft Headquarters Capri Sun Tour

We received a “warm” welcome……not only was everyone super-friendly, but we were thankful to be indoors and out of the cold. Let’s just say I now understand why Chicago is called the Windy City. And when that wind combines with temps in the 20s…..Brrrrrr!

We spent quite a bit of time in the Beverages section of the headquarters learning more about Capri Sun and their new ad campaigns in addition to the big news we had received.

Then it was time for lunch…..

Kraft Test Kitchen

We were served lunch courtesy of the Kraft Kitchen team and I was excited to see what they had come up with for us. I just knew they would not disappoint a group of bloggers with cameras. Yes, we might like to take pictures of our food. :-)

Kraft Spinach Kale Berry Salad

Let me introduce you to the Spinach Kale Berry Salad which was absolutely delicious not to mention gorgeous with those greens and pop of color!

RECIPE –> Spinach-Kale Berry Salad

Kraft Grilled Greek Chicken

While there were plenty of sandwich options to go with Kraft Mayo and other condiments, I opted for the Grilled Greek Chicken. This was in fact the moistest chicken I’ve ever tasted. You must try it!

RECIPE –> Grilled Greek Chicken  with Mediterranean Feta Vegetables

Kraft Desserts

I’ll be honest. Maybe you can relate. I just really wanted to start with dessert first. I didn’t, but I so wanted to. Let me share the recipes with you!

RECIPE –> Philadelphia Double Lemon Philadelphia Cheesecake

RECIPE –> Jell-O Watergate Mini Tarts

Kraft Cheese Division

A tour of Kraft Headquarters revealed just how creative their teams are. Each division created their own special entrance. Check out the Kraft Cheese division entrance……so creative. If you look really closely, you’ll even see their furniture is keeping with their theme.

Kraft Headquarters Wallpaper

A quick glance at this special wallpaper and I realized just how big Kraft is…..you forget how many products make up the brand. I spy Baker’s Chocolate, Stove Top Stuffing and more! A little shopping later in the day at the Kraft Store would really have my head spinning. So many products! I bet you can’t name them all!

I would have loved to show you pictures of the actual Kraft Test Kitchens, but no cameras allowed. Let me just say that I was so impressed with what I saw (even picked up a tip or two). But it was the DISH ROOM that had me drooling. So many dishes in so many different shapes, sizes and colors. A food blogger’s dream!

Capri Sun Lunch Activity

As the day winded down, we headed into the kitchen ourselves to create a school-time lunch inspired by our kids.

Capri Sun Lunch

We shared tips and tricks for the lunches we make. I showed off my Mini-Waffle PB&J sandwiches, which I paired up with Kraft Mozzarella Cheese Stick, Crackers, JELL-O, cucumber slices and Capri Sun Super-V, a Fruit & Vegetable Juice Drink.

I love sending Capri Sun Super-V, a Fruit & Vegetable Juice Drink, to school. Why? There is 1 combined serving of fruit and vegetables! (Each pouch provides 1/2 cup fruit and vegetable juice, which is one combined serving of fruits and vegetables according to the U.S Dietary Guidelines (3/4 from fruit juice and 1/4 from vegetable juice). Be sure to make the most of your fruits and vegetables whole fruits and vegetables).

Capri Sun Notebook

What a trip!

Be on the lookout as I’ve got more Capri Sun fun to share over the next few months!

You might also want to read:

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I’m excited to bring you this sponsored post courtesy of Grapevine Mills.

Grapevine Mills Logo

Mother’s Day is just around the corner, and Grapevine Mills is ready!

In fact, they are so excited about celebrating moms that they are hosting a special event, one night only! And I’ll be there! You can be there too….read on to find out where and when!

The “Indulge, Fashion + Fun for Moms Event,”  is an exclusive event celebrating the women we love featuring an interactive evening of style presentations, fittings and giveaways.

WHEN: Thursday, April 30th, 2015 (5-8pm) at Grapevine Mills Mall (Grapevine, Texas)

Moms always think of others first and Grapevine Mills wants to moms to enjoy a special evening and just focus on themselves for once. I love this!

Grapevine Mills Indulge Moms event

What will happen at the Indulge Event?

You will……

  • Neiman Marcus Last Call will host an interactive presentation featuring the latest spring fashions; shoppers will have the opportunity to win a Michael Kors handbag!
  • Buckle will host a jeans fitting with a drawing to win one of 10 gift sets
  • Francesca’s will showcase stunning accessories and moms can enter to win a necklace
  • Steve Madden and Nike Factory Store will host shoe fittings; Steve Madden will be giving away a $100 gift card and Nike Factory Store will be handing out 30% off coupons; shoppers can also win one of four $25 gift cards
  • AMC Theatres invites moms to experience their Cinema Suites reclining seats at the event. Coupons and one $50 gift card will be given out during the event
  • Wine tasting from local Grapevine wineries and complimentary food sampling

Now some extra fun for you:

GIVEAWAY:
One (1) Winner will receive an invitation to the Indulge, Fashion + Fun for Moms Event at Grapevine Mills and a Simon Giftcard® valued at $100.

NOTE: Attendance at event is required to receive the $100 Gift Card. Event is located at Grapevine Mills Mall in Grapevine, Texas. Transportation is the winner’s responsibility.
HOW TO ENTER:
For your main entry, Leave a comment and tell me why you deserve a night out to indulge! That’s it.

EXTRA ENTRIES:

You can earn one extra entry for each of the following (leave separate comments for each):

2. Follow A Frugal Friend on Pinterest
3. Subscribe to A Frugal Friend via email or in a reader
4. Follow A Frugal Friend on Instagram
5. Follow Shop Grapevine on Instagram
6. Follow A Frugal Friend on Twitter
7. Follow Shop Grapevine on Twitter
8. Tweet the following as is: Win an invite to the @ShopGrapevine moms Event & $100 Gift Card from @AFrugalFriend #SimonIndulge http://tinyurl.com/p9m2z2w

Be sure to Like A Frugal Friend on Facebook to hear the latest giveaways and deals!

(leave as separate comments please for each entry)
Giveaway ends at Midnight (central time) on  Tuesday, April 28th, 2015! Valid for US residents and addresses only. Must be 18 years of age or older to enter. No purchase necessary to enter. Winner will be randomly selected. Void where prohibited. I’ll announce (and contact by email) the winner on this post and the winner will have only 24 hours to get back to me due to event date. Limit one set of entries per household.

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Flirty Aprons Flash Sale – 73% off with Promo Code

by A Frugal Friend on April 22, 2015

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flirty aprons pink damaskAffiliate Link in Post

FLIRTY APRONS FLASH SALE!!

Head to Flirty Aprons and shop just in time for Mother’s Day!

Their top 6 aprons are now 73% off….just $9.43.

Use promo code FLASH73 at checkout!

SHOP –> Unbelievable FLASH SALE, save 73% on these all time customer favorites only, hurry, sale ends Saturday. code FLASH73.

Happy Shopping!

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The Unexpected Side Effect of Becoming a Mom

by A Frugal Friend on April 22, 2015

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Unexpected Side Effect of Becoming a Mom

The bins from the attic now sit in the living room waiting for some attention.

But I’m avoiding them.

Somehow if I don’t open them, maybe just maybe I can pretend this part of life hasn’t passed me by all too soon.

The bins….full of the cutest onesies, footed pajamas and those much loved nursery-rhyme themed crib sheets.

I have been content with our family of 3 ever since my daughter was born.

BUT….there are those moments when it stings a little to think I’ll never experience those moments again.

Then again, I know full well, there are experiences that I now have thanks to becoming a mom.

The unexpected side effects, so to speak.

And while I’m hear to tell new moms that things will get better (your baby will eventually sleep through the night, they will become potty trained, and there will come a day when you can go to the bathroom by yourself without a shadow tagging along), there are some reminders of motherhood that just don’t seem to leave.

Despite those kegel exercises, bladder leakage is a reality for many. It affects millions of people, many of them moms.

While I absolutely think you should do any exercises to strengthen the pelvic floor after having children, sometimes it just doesn’t work. And that’s okay. It’s common and it’s real.

It’s been 7 years since becoming a mom and while it’s not near as bad as it was early on, there are times when bladder leakage is an issue.

Um……

  • laughing hard (this totally reminds me of one “Everybody Loves Raymond” episode”
  • sneezing
  • coughing

Yes, just about every time I get sick, I’m miserable and have to deal with the side effect of bladder leakage. It’s not just stuffy noses and fevers I need to worry about. Especially being an asthmatic, I can have a cough that lasts months after a respiratory infection. Not cool!

Depend Silhouette Active Fit

But there are things you can do:

  • Kegel Exercises – these strengthen your pelvic floor
  • Empty Bladder Often
  • When necessary take advantage of the new Silhouette Active Fit Underwear by Depend

The new Silhouette Active Fit Underwear by Depend will help you lead an active lifestyle.

Yes, you can jump at the trampoline park now!!

They come in black and beige and are low-rise for ultimate discreetness. With moderate absorbency, they’ll give you the confidence you need to get through your busy day.

GET SOCIAL: Depend brand is donating up to $3 million for bladder leakage research and education! This is where you come in. For every photo or video, Tweet on Twitter or Share on Facebook containing the hashtag #Underwareness, they’ll donate $1.

FREE SAMPLE: Best of all, you can try them for free! What have you got to lose?

  • Free Sample will be mailed to your home
  • No cost to you
  • Try the Silhouette Active Fit Underwear to see if they are the answer!
  • Visit here to sign up for your free pair.
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Paddington Inspired Dessert – Chocolate Marmalade Trifle

by A Frugal Friend on April 17, 2015

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I’m so excited to bring you this sponsored post in partnership with BSM Media for a Paddington Dessert to celebrate this release of Paddington in Digital HD!

Paddington Inspired Chocolate Marmalade TrifleAffiliate Link in Post

Today, April 17th, Paddington is available to own in Digital HD across iTunes, Paddington on Amazon Instant Video, Verizon FiOS, and Comcast – 11 days before you can buy it in stores!

That is huge news for all of us Paddington fans!

(NOTE: Available April 28th – Paddington on Blu-Ray + DVD + Digital HD – but can pre-order now too)

We are huge Paddington Bear fans in this house. It first started with the popular book series, which has sold over 35 million copies. And whether we are looking through picture books or enjoying the chapter books for older kids, one thing remains the same…..Paddington has us giggling! In fact, you can see exactly which Paddington books we’ve been reading!

Tonight is movie night since we have a Digital HD copy! And with movie night, you must have a Paddington inspired dessert!

Chocolate Marmalade Trifle

Yes, it wouldn’t be complete without a Paddington dessert!

To understand why I created this dessert, you must know a bit about Paddington!

PADDINGTON tells the story of the comic misadventures of a young Peruvian bear who travels to London in search of a home. Finding himself lost and alone, he begins to realize that city life is not all he had imagined until he meets the kindly Brown family (Bonneville and Hawkins) who take him home after reading the label around his neck. It looks as though his luck has changed until this rare talking bear catches the eye of Millicent (Nicole Kidman), a museum taxidermist.

And one other little important tidbit about Paddington……he LOVES marmalade!

So, my Paddington dessert is a Chocolate Marmalade Trifle. And I know that if Paddington were ever to visit, he’d gobble it right up! It is delicious!

Paddington Dessert

Paddington Inspired Dessert – Chocolate Marmalade Trifle
 
Prep time

Total time

 

Author:
Recipe type: Dessert
Cuisine: American

Ingredients
  • Marmalade
  • Whipped Cream
  • Chocolate Cake, cut into chunks

Instructions
  1. In glass containers, you will start layering ingredients
  2. Layer each container with an inch or so of chocolate cake chunks. We used a Chipotle Dark Chocolate Cake since we already had it in the house.
  3. On top of the chocolate cake layer, add a ½ inch or so layer of marmalade.
  4. On top of the marmalade layer, add an inch or so layer of whipped cream.
  5. Repeat layering process until you reach the top of the glass container.
  6. For the very top layer add whipped cream
  7. NOTE: You will want to add the whipped cream top layer right before serving so it looks its’ best.
  8. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

This dessert couldn’t be easier…..it’s even great for the kids to do!

Be sure to enjoy Paddington Movie Night by visiting PaddingtonParties.com to download your free printable party kit. This is complete with recipes, activities, and Paddington decorations that are too cute!

Also be sure to follow @PaddingtonMovie on Twitter and Paddington on Facebook for the latest scoop on our favorite bear!

 

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Star Wars the Force Awakens

My daughter is humming the tune as we speak. You know the tune, Star Wars!

Why? Well, there is a bit of excitement in the house.

STAR WARS: THE FORCE AWAKENS, which will be in theaters December 18, 2015, has released it’s second trailer! I’ve just watched it and have goosebumps….especially from the last scene.

You see, I was born in the 1970s. And while I love all the Star Wars films, the first three really got me hooked.

When I think of Star Wars I think of Han Solo, Luke Skywalker, and Princess Leia. And this holiday season, all 3 will be back in the new film, Star Wars: The Force Awakens!

But let’s get to the good stuff……..here is the new Star Wars: The Force Awakens Trailer:

For those of you on Twitter (like me – you do follow me, right? I’m @AFrugalFriend), you’ll want to pay attention:

Star Wars Emojis

Twitter #StarWarsEmojis

Starting today, Twitter users will have even more ways to express their excitement and celebrate
their favorite pop-culture phenomenon with exclusive new Twitter #StarWarsEmojis. Twitter users who post hashtags representing key words associated with specific Star Wars character and legacy themes will see a small emoji-like icon embedded in their tweets. Tweet the following character hashtags to unlock the first three #StarWarsEmojis : #C3PO #Stormtrooper #BB8

NOTE: You’ll go back to your original tweet to see the Star Wars emojis!! So fun!

jedi star wars dining

With all this Star Wars excitement, I’ve been up to something.

I’m heading to the 2015 Disney Social Media Moms Celebration next month. What my little girl doesn’t know yet….I’ve snagged a coveted reservation for the Jedi Star Wars Dining Character Experience! We’ll be dining with Goofy Vader and Donald Stormtrooper!

Stay tuned for updates!

May for the Force Be With You!

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Win a Lightheaded Bed for Kids – Pick a Theme! Giveaway

by A Frugal Friend on April 16, 2015

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UPDATE: This is a group giveaway and I was having difficulties with the code/images. Please visit ItsPeachyKeen.com to enter over there. It’s the same exact giveaway.

Those of you who have already entered, your entries are still valid and you can visit her site to see the winner’s etc!

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