Monday, February 27, 2012

Blog takes a somber tone today...

Today I spent most of the day glued to the TV.

Not because of a good series I was catching up on.

Not because of some sports team.

Not because of the political race that is going on.


But because a student in Chardon, Ohio shot up the school today. Killing 2 and injuring 3 more. 

Chardon, Ohio is literally a 5 minute drive from the house I grew up in. I have spent much of my childhood in Chardon. 

You always think this can't happen here. No. It can't. But then it does. And your heart stops. You don't know these people at all. But you know that your school system plays them every year in football, basketball, softball, etc. You know the Giant Eagle shopping carts that you used to "ride" on with your Grams. You know the Domino's that you used to frequent with two friends from work for the Domino's Dots (I still do miss those!). You know WHAT their High School looks like. You know what that cafeteria looks like it. 

Then you try to imagine how those kids felt. Those kids that the rest of their lives, in some way, has forever changed. In a lot of ways, their innocence is shredded. They experienced something no child, no adult, should ever feel. And your heart breaks for them.

My prayers and love go out to those families, all of them, that were affected today. Including my Kirtland families. This has hit too close to our doorsteps. We are all (well the people on my FB) going to be wearing red tomorrow (their school color) in honor of those affected in this. Tomorrow when you get dressed, please think of those kids. You may not know them but your love and support means the world to them all.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

One of my song obsessions...

I love this song. Just love the lyrics. I think everyone can relate to something in their life that "only made us stronger":

Friday, February 24, 2012

Featured Business for February: CHICKBANDS!!

I actually found Chickbands through Christina at The Athletarian and instantly fell in love. 

Kara is amazing. And not just because she makes awesome headbands, no. She is also one of the sweetest girls EVER. She will answer any questions you might have. She will do a custom order with you at any time. And she sends cute little notes with her bands :D 

Chickbands, for those that are unfamiliar, are nonslip headbands that are amazing for working out OR just out and about. 

Like these awesome sparkle ones (my absolute fave):

Or these thin bands:

Even college bands!

Totally own this one, sporting it right now!
She also makes adorable ones for kids! 

Bought this one for a friend of mines daughter..adorable! 

Such a great range of bands for anything you are interested in! 

How do you win one of these?? Well Kara is wanting THREE of you to win a band of your choice!!! Here's how:

1. Must be a follower of my blog. Comment that you are +1 entry
2. MUST like Chickbands FB page. Tell her I sent you! +1 entry
3. Comment below which band you would choose! +1 entry
4. Share this giveaway!! FB, Twitter, Blog. Comment below that you did! +1 entry per thing you do, share link!

This giveaway will go until March 2nd and will close at 9am. The winner will be chosen sometime that day! 

Good luck!!!! 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Hello!!! (Yes I am alive and I have a Handful Winner)

Yes, I am still alive and well. Been getting some emails from friends asking if I am okay cause I haven't blogged in over a week. I am good! Things just got really busy around here this week so I had to take a break for a bit :D

I have a winner of the Handful Bra of their choice and that winner is!!! 

If you haven't read her blog it! She is such a sweetie and her blog is so fun :D She's also really good about adding pictures :D Go give her some blog love :D 

Thanks to all that entered!! I have a featured small business owner blog post coming up soon! So make sure you stick around for that :D 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Handful Review and Giveaway!

(My Perfect Potatoes Au Gratin are in the oven currently so I have some time to set this up!)

Buying a sports bra is tricky sometimes. Some work for others, some not so much. Its even trickier when you have big ole boobs like me. I was "graced" with ginormous ones (we're talking DD cup size :() so for me, its even harder!! 

When I first started going back to the gym back in September, I bought this Nike Pro Sports Bra:

Total uniboob in it. Like seriously. So bad in fact, I feel weird going out after my workout in it. It also isn't very comfortable for my size that really sucked. When Old Navy was having their huge Activewear sale, I bought this:

I love it. Its comfortable, it fits well. And it actually separates. Score! 

As I started reading more blogs I noticed that every one I know wears a Handful Sports Bra. And everyone raves about them! Course I have yet to see someone with my cup size but I took my chances! I checked out their website and read a bit about them. Come to find out, this company was founded (and the bra was invented) because of a woman's frustration with finding the right bra. RIGHT?!? I think we have ALL been there! They are also super cute. They have spaghetti racerback straps. They come in cute colors AND the cool thing, they don't look like sports bras. You can wear them with a tank or low cut shirt and no one would ever know! (Unless of course, you are sitting around someone that has a Handful then she might be like "Uh huh, that's a Handful!)

I contacted Jody and told her my dilemma. She is AMAZING. Her exact words were "Well you are MORE then a Handful but I would love to hear your review on it from a bigger cup size woman!" She sent me the coca colored one and I instantly checked it out.

Bottom line...Love. LOVE LOVE LOVE. No uniboob. No trying to force the boob back into the bra, nothing. Just Never feel like you are wearing it either, its so lightweight on the body. If you have not tried these out yet...what are you waiting for?? GOO!! GOO NOW!! 

So how do you score one of these?? WELL today is your lucky day! There will be a chance to win one from my giveaway AND a chance to win THREE from Handful!! So you could potentially score three bras...SCORE!! 

Here's how for my giveaway:

1. Follow my blog and comment that you did +1 entry
2. Head on over to Handful and then comment which color you would want if you won!! +1 entry

Here's how to win a possible THREE bras!

1. 1 entry per tweet: Mention Pioneer Apron and @Handful in a message with a link to the video! Ex: Enter this awesome @HandfulBra giveaway that Pioneer Apron told me about! Watch (and then link to video) You can do this one as many times as you want! 
2. 1 entry per Facebook post with Pioneer Apron and @Handful tagged. You can also do this one as many times as you want! 
3. 1 entry per blog post. Again, post this one your FB page with Pioneer Apron and @Handful tagged so it shows up on their page! 

My giveaway will end on the 23rd at 9am. The winner will be announced sometime that day. Their giveaway ends at the end of the month!! Make sure you get all your entries in!! 

Good luck!!!

Disclaimer: I received this product for free in exchange for my review. These views are mine and mine alone. I was not required to give a positive review. But I totally wanted to cause they ROCK! 

"Don't be surprised if I get up and make more..."

So on Valentine's Day, I made N and the kids dinner. We both had to be away from our Valentine's (hers is deployed currently) and I didn't want her to be alone so I said Be my Valentine this year! After NO hesitation, she told me yes and so our amazing relationship (spur of the moment one) was formed. She's lovely and takes care of me. Yes she does ;-D

I didn't know what to make so of course I consulted the trusty Pioneer Woman for some ideas. At first, I thought I would cook Steak Diane. Then I said Nah. So I decided on some Chicken Piccata. I texted her and she said "That is yummy! I just had it last week!" Well...that is out the window. So I decided on Beef with Snow Peas. So insanely simple and so insanely flavorful! First time I made this recipe was last year for Easter!

At the commissary I tried to find ginger but had to settle on the already minced, in a tube ginger. Still works!! In fact, I think I had more ginger flavor using that then I had using fresh ginger! I also bought two bags of snow peas cause I didn't know how much we would manage to eat. I get to her house (mind you after cutting my hand open too, that was FUN!) and get down to cooking. She's standing next to me and goes "Don't be surprised if I get up and make more snow peas." I said really? (I had only opened the one bag) Her response is "Oh yeah, my kids love vegetables." Sure..sure N. Sure. I had jasmine rice going in the rice cooker so you can imagine the scents right now. Rice cooking, ginger, soy sauce...nom nom nom.

We get down to eating and guess what DOESN'T happen?!? None of the kids want to eat the snow peas. Not even her son, who eats EVERYTHING! So sure sure N, sure. Go ahead and make some more...mmhmm.

It was amazing (like all the things I cook, duh! ;-D). Not a single leftover was left. All plates were clean, save for the snow peas. Definetly another winner from PW! If you haven't made this yet, DO IT. You will NOT regret it!!

Click Giveaway WINNER!

N stands behind me, shaking her fist. She SOOO wanted to win this one!!

BUT ALAS, she did NOT. The winner of the Click drink giveaway is:

#51 Jordan with the comment:

I tweeted: (and her link)

Congrats JORDAN! Please contact me at soljerster AT gmail DOT com within 48 hours so I can get it mailed out to you!

Thanks to all that entered and the new followers..welcome! I will be posting a new giveaway later today!! (Handful Bra giveaway anyone?)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

A Quick Note before Bed....

Monday, February 13, 2012

Scentsy Winner, A Recipe and my Menu

First I will start off by saying thanks for the quick entries for the Scentsy Beach Plugin Warmer. The winner is...

(now its weird, one of my comments didn't have a number next to their name (if anyone knows why, please let me know how I can fix that) so I had to count. Thank goodness it was only 9!!)

#7 is mommysap! Please contact me as soon as you see this so I can get it mailed out in a timely fashion (hoping as early as tomorrow!!). Email me at soljersterATgmailDOTcom. Thanks!! 

I know I have been slacking in the cooking department and that is...well that is nothing except pure laziness. I have made quite a few new recipes but sadly, no pictures. I tried to take a few with my phone but that just didn't work. I will still post the post about them but sadly, no pictures. Yes, bad food blogger.

About a week ago, I made Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole . One word...AH-Mazing. I loved it. Other Chef loved it. Little Man loved it. Definetly a keeper for sure!! It was kinda funny watching Little Man put all the mushrooms to the side and say to me "Here Momma, you can have these." Aww, aren't you a sweetheart? Nothing really to report about it except its amazing. Seriously. And so easy and quick to make!! You won't be disappointed!! (Recipe at the link!)

Chicken and Wild Rice Casserole

This grocery period is full of a LOT of new recipes. A lot of which, I have never cooked before. So that makes this food blogger extremely excited and nervous all at the same time! Most of my recipes came from Tasty Kitchen again, amazing is that website? And almost ALL the recipes I have gotten off of there, have been amazing. If you haven't checked it out yet, you need to! 

Upcoming Menu Choices (mostly dinners but there are some breakfasts and lunches too):

Flank Steak with Snow Peas and Jasmine Rice
Killer Club Sandwiches
Fried Round Steak, Potatoes Au Gratin
Make-Ahead Muffin Melts (I'll make Wednesday night)
Skillet Parm Cheese, Broccoli and Rice
Eggs in Ham Cups
Bacon, Hashbrown and Egg Casserole
Italian Chicken Soup
Bacon, Egg and Cheese Wrap
Hot Ham and Cheese Sandwiches with Onion Butter
Creamy Chicken and Broccoli over Rice
Cheesy Potato Fritatta
Ranch Potatoes (will go with steak and steamed broccoli)
Chicken Noodle Soup Casserole
Nutella Oatmeal with banana
Broccoli Cheddar Chicken Crescent Braid
Creamy Chicken Casserole
Creamy Chicken Spaghetti
Ricotta Scrambled Eggs
Poppy Seed Chicken

LOTS of good eats which means LOTS of happy stomachs around here! Which also means lots of cooking, lots of messes and lots of picture taking :D 

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Who wants a free Scentsy plug in?

So I recently bought a new plugin that fits my bathroom better and am giving away my old one. When I say old, its cause I bought it. But I don't mean old as in its used. I actually have NEVER once used this warmer. Weird I know (but then again, I never used my Christmas one either, it just kinda sat there ;-P). I know from my Scentsy giveaway that a lot of you signed up SO here is a chance to win another time! 

It's so cute! This is what you will win :D
To enter, all you gotta do is comment below. I will pick a winner tomorrow and it will be mailed Tuesday morning :D

Saturday, February 11, 2012

PureFit Bar Review

Like all the other awesome blogs I read, I too was given the chance to review PureFit Bars. Like the other awesome blogs I read, I was given the 5 sample bars. The flavors, I wasn't too enthused with but meh. You can't complain too much can you? 

The Granola Crunch I really enjoyed. It wasn't too crunchy either as the title would make you think. Definetly out of all 5, this one was my one of my top favorites. The Almond Crunch I tried next. Not bad at all. I am not a big fan of almond though so I would have to say this was at the bottom of my list. The Berry Almond Crunch, same thing, had almonds. BUT you could definetly taste the berry flavor vs the almond flavor so that was decent. The Chocolate Brownie was actually my least fave. Not entirely sure what it was but I just did not like it :( My most favorite however was Peanut Butter. Which is no surprise since I love any peanut butter nutrition bar :D While the flavors are decent tasting, the fact that there are only 5 flavors was kinda of a set back. BUT its like any other nutrition bar really. You find one flavor you like and you stick with it :D At least that is how it is for me :D

I love their 40/30/30 combination they have in each bar. 40% carbs, 30% protein and 30% fat which is ideal for a working out body (consistent energy). I also love how each bar really does fill you up, unlike some competitors bars where you are hungry not even 20 minutes later. I ate each of these in the morning before my workout and I was set until my midmorning snack. Another score in my book. Definetly eat these with a lot of water! They are thick so drinking with water is definetly a good idea. I think that is something that surprised me the most. I guess I was expecting the consistency of a PowerBar and these ones definetly break off more in your mouth. Which is fine! Not a bad thing at all. Just a tad surprising when not expecting it :D These bars are also dairy, wheat and glutten free, no trans fat, artificial sweetners or hydrogenerated fats. Definetly a healthy choice.

If you choose to order on their website (link above if you missed it), use promo code PROMO25. You also save when you reorder. 1-3boxes are 34.35each (2.29/bar), 4-5 boxes are 32.00each (2.13/bar), 6-9 boxes are 30.00each (2.00/bar) and 10+ boxes are 28.00each (1.86/bar).


Disclaimer: I received this product for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to give an honest review. These views are mine and mine alone.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Chicken Sour Cream Enchilada Casserole

Sometimes I make chicken enchilada's with green sauce. It is most definetly a fave in this house but I don't make it that often. It has a certain flavor that I can only take so much of so its not a monthly dish by any means. 

I saw a Chicken Sour Cream Enchilada Casserole recipe on TastyKitchen (best website EVER btw) I knew I had to try it. We are not big fans of corn tortillas so that was kinda iffy for me but meh. Gotta try something new right? The other thing I found a the cojita cheese. I have never heard of cojita cheese before in my life. Ever. I opened the package and that was say the least. The smell, not so much. The taste, really salty. Honestly, it reminded me of a Mexican cheese version of Feta cheese. Really was NOT a fan at all. But the good thing is there isn't much in there so you really can't taste it. At least I didn't. 



  • 1 whole Chicken, Cooked And Diced
  • 1 can (10.75 Oz. Can) Cream Of Mushroom Soup
  • 1 can (10.75 Oz. Can) Cream Of Chicken Soup
  • 4 ounces, weight Can Green Chilies, Chopped
  • ½ teaspoons Garlic Powder
  • 8 ounces, weight Carton Sour Cream Light
  • ¼ teaspoons Salt
  • ¼ teaspoons Pepper
  • ½ teaspoons Onion Powder
  • 8 ounces, weight Package Of Corn Tortillas
  • Olive Oil
  • 8 ounces, weight Mexican Mix Cheese, Shredded
  • ¼ cups Cojita Cheese

Preparation Instructions

Preheat oven to 350ºF.
In large sauce pan over low/medium heat, add all ingredients except for the tortillas, olive oil, and cheeses.
Stir so that everything is mixed well.
While it’s warming up, heat the corn tortillas in a small amount of olive oil in small sauce pan over low heat.
Spray a casserole pan with cooking spray and tear each corn tortilla into 4-8 individual pieces.
Lay half of the tortillas on the bottom of the casserole dish and then layer with sauce and chicken and half of the cheese mixture.
Repeat layers, except keep the cheese off the very top layer.
Cook in the oven for 20 minutes and then top off with the last of the cheese and cook for an additional 5 minutes.
Let it cool for about 5 minutes and then serve.

Wednesday, February 08, 2012

CLICK Espresso Drink Review and Giveaway!!

I love coffee. Like no mistaking that or denying it, I love coffee. Of any type. I like lattes, I like espresso shots, anything! So much in fact, that I typically drink a pot of coffee a day. Intense right? 

Well Jan from Click Espresso Protein Drink sent me their Click Sample Bag to try out. 
My shaker bottle is currently being washed in the dishwasher, sorry.

Let me tell you, I am HOOKED. I have been drinking the mocha every morning before my workouts for the last month. The mocha is absolutely fabulous (have not tried the french vanilla one YET because I am totally addicted to the mocha and only have one serving left:
Insert epic sad face here. I have to wait for my next order to come in!! WAH! Anyway...

This stuff is addicting, its so delicious AND its good for you! Coming in at 120 calories, it also has 23 vitamins and minerals, 15 grams of protein (which I was told by Jan today equals 1/2 cup of cottage cheese!) and its equal to 2 espresso shots. Its a perfect for breakfast OR a snack throughout your day! 

Its also reasonably priced too, 26.95$ for the regular, 29.95$ for the all natural. I drink 2 scoops with 20oz of water and its lasted me the entire month. Definetly worth the money! 

So how can you win your own sampler pack? Here's how:

1. Follow my blog and comment that you did (mandatory) +1 entry
2. Like Click Espresso Drink on Facebook and give them some loving (mandatory) +1 entry
3. Comment below which flavor you would want to try (mocha or french vanilla) +1 entry
4. Share giveaway on your blog, Twitter and/or Facebook (possible 3 entries per thing you do)

Giveaway will close on February 16th at 9am. I will choose the winner sometime that day! 

Good luck!  

Disclaimer: I received this product for free in exchange for my review. I was not required to give a positive review. These views are mine and mine alone.

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

ZipFizz Winners!!!

First of all thank you so much to the new followers and all the entries, thank you!!

Second, the winners of the ZipFizz water bottle and 5 flavors are:

#32 Stacy
I am a new follower


#34 Nicole D
Following ZipFizz on FB...we both like Taylor Swift...Nerds :-D

Please contact me at soljerster AT gmail DOT com within 48 hours so I can send the email off to Nichole :D

There will be another giveaway posted VERY soon so definetly stick around!!! 

Monday, February 06, 2012

Week in Review....

This week was definetly not at all what I was hoping BUT I only ran/walked 3 days this week. Here it is:

Monday: (walk/run) 25 min, 1.15 miles, 2.88MPH, 20:45pace
Tuesday: Weights for 1 hour
Wednesday: (walk/run) 26:35min, 1.39 miles, 3.14mph, 19:04pace
Thursday: Rest
Friday: walk/run 26:26min, 1.34miles, 3.06MPH, 19:34pace
Total: 3.88 miles

Wednesday was the best day for sure. I hope to see more days like that but with only more miles, obviously. 

I did get some awesome giveaways today :D My Wright Socks came in (love these things! So soft!!!) and my Asperis Shorts are here. You definetly need to do some lunges to get into these things!! I love em!! Can't wait to try them out tomorrow :D 

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Randomness (with a new recipe)

I was tagged in the 11 things by Running with the Girls and I run like a girl but for some reason whenever I posted it, their questions to me have big white boxes over the front of it so you can't see it anyway :( Boo.

I recently got this Babycakes Donut Maker and am eager to make some donuts! Maybe today me and Little Man will. How cute are those little donuts? (crap I just realized I passed out yesterday before blogging...ugh. Guess I am blogging twice today). Which made me think that I signed up for a thing called a foodie penpal and was just assigned my penpal this morning. I can't wait to get a box together for her and mail it!! I love getting mail and I love it even more when its goodies and not just junk!

Really nothing new or interesting to report honestly. Tomorrow I will have (well maybe later today since I missed my post yesterday) a review for PureFit energy bars. I am cooking Sour Cream Chicken Enchilada Casserole (yes I can hear my ass hating me) tonight for dinner which is a new recipe so should be interesting. Last night though..oh last night...

So on Pinterest, my friends have been tagging this recipe a lot. I love Mexican food and especially tacos so I clicked on it to check it out. THREE INGREDIENTS PEOPLE! Three. Chicken breasts, taco seasoning and a jar of salsa. AND the best part is...your crock pot does ALLLLL the cooking. Yes ma'ma, that is a winner right there. I put it in the crockpot really early, around 10 and it was done by 4. Early dinner for us but I also have this weird image of my ass tripling in size if I eat anything past 7. Make sure when you spoon the chicken out, you use a slotted spoon. I didn't and they were kinda messy but man, were they delicious. Definetely a keeper in my book :D

Since I am a bad blogger and have let my camera's battery die, I will leave you with a video of my fave song at the moment. Video is DEFINETLY weird but I love this song. Its been playing on repeat in my ear for the last 10 minutes.

Hope you are enjoying your weekend!!

What is your fave recipe at the moment?
What is your fave song at the moment?

Friday, February 03, 2012

Gym Today...

N and I dragged, yes dragged, ourselves to the gym today. Our kids had off of school today so we were just not going to go. But we decided it would probably be best to go. 

It. Was. A. Madhouse! 

There were probably 15 kids in the "mom's room" and most of them were wondering around while people were trying to work out. Where were their parents you might wonder? Oh on the machines and gabbing, completely ignoring their kids. There was another kid there who kept getting into someone else's diaper bag and eating the food in there. Another that was throwing toys at people. Another that was climbing over the divider of the two rooms and then knocking people over. Same thing, Mom wasn't paying attention. Thank God for those headphones cause once they were in, I heard nothing. I think Little Man was a tad overwhelmed at first but he sat with N's daughter and kept out of the madness. Kinda felt bad for them :( 

Today's run was alright. I pushed myself. I felt my muscles start to get sore and I was like Nope, not stopping. This is part of running, DO IT. And I did. And again, felt great. Everything was lower today though and I noticed that after my rest days (so far) it normally is. So that will either change once I get further into the program OR I am just that slow. I am hoping its something that will change! Overall, it was a good workout. I feel great. It felt great. I loved it. And am actually excited to start the next week :D 

How was your workout today? What do you normally do on your rest days? Do you still do a light workout or are you lounging in jammies watching TV? 

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Not much to report....

So I leave you with this funny picture....

Not sure why I find this as funny as I do, but I do. 

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

A Few Things....

Today at the gym...Felt. So. Good! I kinda pushed myself to go faster which isn't a bad thing for me at all! I normally walk at a 3speed pace and run at 4.5. Today, with each interval I did (3 runs, 3 walks), I would up my speed by .1. By the final set of runs, I was at 4.8. I really hope by next week I am running at a 5 and walking at a 3.5!! That would be kinda cool for me :D Tomorrow is a weight day. I am not that sore anymore, just stiff. So I have been hydrating and stretching all day. N was a weight trainer in high school and man is she killing me! But its a good kill so it works.

The second thing is I signed up for the NaBloPoMo this month. That stands for National Blog Posting Month (and there is a little button in the sidebar). The goal is to write every single day for an entire month. Some people get writers block or get burnt out and this is a really good program to really stay committed. Who knows, I might just add a post with a "." one day, who knows. But I like that I will hold myself accountable now if I miss a day (since my new years resolution was to blog daily). 

The third thing, I made some AMAZING Ham and Potato Soup tonight and I wanted to share with you! I got the recipe from the lovely (and weight queen) N. She cooks it when we have get togethers for her business (Scentsy) or really whenever she wants something delicious and filling! Not sure on the exact cookbook she gets this out of but it has a lot of kid friendly recipes so I am assuming its one of those "kid friendly" ones. (Recipe will be posted below). 

Ham and Potato Soup

Close up!! 
The only thing I recommend changing is possibly getting the low sodium chicken broth cause even cutting back on the ham, it tasted like I added salt and I did not. So unless you like a lot of salt, I recommend cutting back on that. It has to cook for a total of 8 hours (I don't recommend cooking it on high) so make sure you start early!! Delicious, filling and hearty! Nom!


1cup celery
1/3cup chopped onion
1/2lb ham
1 box scalloped potatoes
potato sauce packet
4cup chicken broth
salt and pepper to taste
2cup half and half
1/3cup flour


Place chopped celery and onions in your slow cooker. Add ham to the slow cooker. Add potatoes, sauce mix, chicken broth, salt and pepper to slow cooker. Stir together gently until everything is well mixed. Cover  and cook on low for 7 hours. 
In a small bowl, whisk together half and half and flour. Carefully add and mix well. Cover and cook for another hour stirring every 15 minutes.

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