I stopped at Reyna Foods today to pick up my missing Crockpot Chicken Tacos ingredients! I was not surprised to find fresh homemade ingredients at a reasonable price! I make weekly stops in the strip to stock up on all of my fresh produce, meats, and cheeses!
I definitely grabbed their fresh tortillas, black beans and a #7 guacamole (wow is it hot!)
I know I’m having tacos for dinner BUT I cannot avoid stopping at Edgar’s for a pork taco!!!! The best in the ‘Burgh!!
Diamond Find!! I picked up a bag of these sweet peppers for $1.99 at PennMac!!
At PennMac I also learned that the white soft perfectly meltable Mexican cheese you get at ElCampesino is called Chihuahua! Buy a brick at the PennMac cheese counter-shred for taco night and freeze for next time!
I hope you were able to pick up your “out of stock” ingredients and enjoyed my crockpot chicken tacos for dinner!!
If you missed kicking Monday’s ass it’s ok! Order a pizza and try this recipe any day of the week!! Enjoy!!
I love to use my crockpot! It is an amazing feeling to have dinner cooking by 9am! Start early in the morning, throw everything in and it is ready by dinner time! We are never home during the day, so I feel comfortable leaving the crockpot cooking!!
Don’t have every ingredient when you start? No problem! Neither do I most of the time! Just start with your base and your meat and get it cooking! We cannot stand mushy overcooked veggies in this house, so it is better to add the fresh veggies later! Add them at 4 when you get home and dinner is ready by 5:30!
Crockpot Chicken Tacos
1-2 lb.boneless skinless chicken breasts- frozen or fresh!
1 cup salsa
1/4 cup taco seasoning
1 onion chopped
1 pepper chopped
1 22oz. can diced tomatoes
1 14oz. can black beans
Put salsa, diced tomatoes, chicken chopped onions and taco seasoning in crockpot.
Set time for 6 hours on high.
Add peppers, black beans and all other crockpot ingredients in last 1-2 hours.
Serve in shells with your favorite toppings!
Feel free to add hot salsa, hot sauce or Cayenne pepper to make it spicy!
Last week, my family experienced our very first Disney Cruise on the Disney Wonder. In fact, it was our very first cruise ever and our first Disney experience. When you wish upon a star…Makes no difference who you are…You will love it!
I do want to mention that this post was in no way sponsored by Disney Cruise Line or any other Disney affiliate.
Because I have so much to share, I will be publishing multiple posts- planning and days at sea, ports, what to wear what to bring, fashion trends on the cruise…and more!
Let’s talk planning…
When I began researching our usual Feb/March week in Paradise Island, Bahamas, I had sticker shock! The prices were nearly double what they were the previous three years. I googled- family vacations, vacations great for kids- and stumbled upon Disney Cruise information. I immediately thought of a high school friend of mine who I knew, through our Facebook connection, has a wonderful reputation as a Disney travel planning expert! After contacting her, I found out that her services are 100% free of charge and she will plan everything from transportation, to specific activities and adventures!
Because we have never cruised, I had no idea about stateroom location, stateroom type, dinner seatings, boarding time etc. After reading some reviews, I knew we wanted to go to Disney’s private island in the Bahamas Castaway Cay. Heather quizzed me about our preferences and took care of all of the details! Being our first cruise, and being worried about nausea, we decided on a 5-night Caribbean cruise which included one day in Cozumel, Mexico and one day in Castaway Cay.
I am happy to report that none of us experienced even the slightest bit of motion sickness! I have a terrible time with motion sickness when riding as a passenger in a car or airplane and I was terrified! Heather booked us a room mid-ship and we had no issues!
Although Disney will take care of everything , we took care of our own flights to Miami and took a taxi to the port! It was waaaaaay cheaper!
Days at Sea
The ship’s Daily Navigator gave us all of the options! We just had to pick what we wanted to do-kids club activities, appearances, shows, movies, party times!
Disney Cruise Lines provides 2 OnBoard Phones to use between guests! Most importantly, the kids club would text us and let us know if the kids were moving on to the next activity, wanted picked up, or we could call them to check in! Our kids enjoyed both the Oceaneers Club and the Oceaneers Lab’s various activities. Story time with Belle and the Luau with Stitch were a huge hit!
Be prepared to disconnect! The OnBoard ship cellphone rates and wifi rates were astronomical!! Unless you take baths with $100 bills, turn off roaming and wifi and just use your camera.
You never know who you might run into on the ship!!
Ok last thing for today’s post…Can we discuss the food? Order room service 24 hours/day. Sit down for breakfast and lunch, do a quick run through a buffet, or grab pizza, hot dogs, chicken fingers, wraps, fruit and other snacks at outdoor fast food spots! Dine at one of 4 different 5 star restaurants every night for dinner with special surprises for the kids around every corner! Everything was delicious!!!
Here were my favorites!
We will be trying these at home!!
Up next….ports of call! Where we stopped on our cruise and what we did!!
Our most recent trip to Miami was a total breeze! What?? Traveling with 2 and 4 -year- old monkeys can be easy??? Follow my top 10 steps for a tantrum-less, tear free, and totally fun trip the kiddos will never forget!
Let’s jump right in:
#1 We each only have 2 hands!!! Take a shuttle service near the Airport for a seamless luggage transition from car to airport and back! Here in Pittsburgh, we use the PIT Stop! They are awesome!! Traveling in the winter? Your car is waiting for you, clear of snow and ice, with seat warmers ON!!
#2 What to wear? Be happy with your choices!
When we look our best, we feel our best, and our attitude is best! No pajamas! Scary! Be comfortable but stylish and most importantly…layer!! Traveling cold to warm?? Wear your emergency layering jacket as your heaviest piece then go backwards!
What we wore:
Miss Priss striped Capri pants, BabyNay sleeveless top, Circo jean jacket and silver sparkle TOMS.
Relaxed fit Gap jeans, Gymboree polo, Gap windbreaker and Adidas tennis shoes.
Jeans, breathable Under Armour T-shirt, Adidas 3/4 zip-up and tennis shoes. (If anyone has to break a sweat, it is dad- Maybe loading the car or carrying a monkey!)
INC Skinny jeans, Kensie racerback black tank, Kensie oatmeal anywhere jacket and Lucky strapped island wedges. Wear silver jewelry that does not need removed in security!
#3 Always wear the largest heaviest shoes and clothing. (Notice we wore our jeans and biggest shoes! )
#4 Traveling cold to warm? Never lug winter coats through an Airport! Layer and bring a pashmina or scarf in case you need to wrap up a child!
#5 DO NOT bring car seats! If your plane is going down, the car seats you brought for the plane will not save them! If your destination requires a rental car, you can rent car seats!
#6 DO bring a small, umbrella stroller! Inevitably, one child gets tired walking or needs a nap. You can check this stroller at the gate- which means use in the airport- and pick up as soon as you exit.
#7 Pre-plan and Pack Essentials in your Mommy Bag!
This trip I took my Tory Burch black Ella tote! (Yes, I am obsessed with TB right now!!!)
It is the ultimate travel bag because it is nylon and can handle spills, sand and water! Always bring our pashmina in your carry on- it serves a dual purpose it can also be a blanket if necessary on the plane!
What else is in my bag:
Activity books with TONS of stickers!
Valuables- my jewelry zip-up!
One set of pool gear for all- swimwear and flip flops! Which brings me to #8…
#8 Bring swimsuits and flip flops in your mommy bag! Going somewhere warm? Arriving early afternoon? Check-in times are usually late afternoon. Wow them with your planning and enjoy your first hours poolside with a cold beverage!!
#9 Be cheerful, easy- going, and upbeat. I know! Way, way easier said than done! Those of you who know me well already, know that I work on this every single day of my life!! As a perfectionist, I want anything and everything to be perfect! By breathing, putting on a smile, and relaxing, you will keep your husband and kids in good spirits no matter what the circumstances!
#10 Last, but not least! Lollipop, lollipop, o lolli lollipop…lollipops go a long way !!! They give you time! It takes a child approx 4 minutes to get bored with or finish chewing a lollipop. Because of the sugars lollipops contain, they can easily settle an upset stomach (adults and kids), be the extra few minutes you need, or hold the kids over to the next meal! Never leave home without lollipops!
I hope these tips help you and/or give you the confidence you need to plan a trip with your little ones!! Do it!! We have been fortunate enough to travel to San Diego, Orlando, the Bahamas…and many other exciting destinations with our kids!
Don’t listen to other people, the kids will remember, it is fantastic bonding time with the family, and they get to see there is a world outside of your hometown! All great things for their learning and growing!
When I think Spring fashion, I think new, bright, vibrant, sleek, shimmer, pretty… As a busy mom who loves fashion, I look for the 2-3 must haves. In the past it has been a dove tail sweater, high-low maxi, a minidress, maybe a peplum top. Let’s just jump right in and let Elle show us what is hot this Spring!
Without further adieu, the first Spring trend is a white wide leg pant.
White wide leg pants from Dak’s Ready-to-wear collection. Ready to wear, where? To jail? A mental hospital? No, you are right, way too much material for a mental hospital.
In case that look didn’t wow you, they have also paired the wide leg white pant with a graphic jacket…How kind.
The caption states “White pants feel fresh in this roomy silhouette” Roomy??? You think??? I could fit all of my college roommates in this outfit! Was this jacket designed as the new TGIFridays line cook uniform?
Nope, here is the new cook uniform…
“As long as I got my suit and tie” Right?
Ok- next trend Fringe!! Has to be better!
Does she have patches of Easter grass actually hanging off of her sweater? Or is it real grass? The girl and outfit do look vaguely familiar from an episode of SVU I watched recently.
Gotta love Elle’s headline ” Fringe detailing gives spring separates a cozy feel!”
Cozy? Two words…Ugly Duckling
Next trend, Sheer!
A little sheer here and there never hurt anyone BUT…she obviously was hurt and Doc McStuffins fixed her boo boos with a big white bandaid???
And last, but not least…
Miley Cyrus needs her outfit back because she is totally naked hanging from a ball somewhere. Really, she is.
After scrolling through pages and pages of this Spring’s hottest trends, I will wear exactly what I have in my closet from last year. By adding a few bright scarves, flowy tops and maybe cute wedges, my go-to skinny jeans will get me through Spring. Today I am happy to live in Western PA where the Spring season only lasts about 16 total days!