Playing Favorites: ShopRite's Wholesome Pantry Snacks

Monday, September 30, 2019

This post was written in partnership with ShopRite Stores.

I'm taking a detour from the regular format of Playing Favorites this month to spotlight a particular brand of food products that I am loving. Ever since I attended a luncheon where Robyn O'Brien was a speaker, I've been on a mission to eat cleaner, healthier. I was so inspired by O'Brien that I came home from the luncheon and swiftly took stock of my pantry and refrigerator contents. Although I didn't toss every bag item in there, I was forced to examine my family's eating preferences and decided to make positive changes.

Eight years ago, most organic foods were of the produce variety. Slowly over the years, more mainstream grocery items (cereals, snacks, soups, etc.) are now available in organic varieties. When ShopRite reached out to me offering a package of a sampling of its Wholesome Pantry line of organic snack products, I was only more than happy to give them a try.

I am certainly no stranger to the Wholesome Pantry line of products. ShopRite is my go-to grocery store, and I've been thrilled with the Wholesome Pantry products since ShopRite debuted them in 2016. To see some of my favorite post-workout Wholesome Pantry snacks, click here.

Best Online Reads

Thursday, September 26, 2019

The ten stories from around the web that I am loving this week:

1. Here's what school looked like the year you were born via Good Housekeeping.

2. How to actually clean an oven via House Beautiful.

3. Six tips for waking early, getting sh*t done, and being happy via Elephant Journal.

How To Improve Your Outdoor Space

Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Just because summer is over doesn't mean you can't enjoy time outdoors in your yard, on your patio, or on your deck. No matter where you live, you can enjoy a beautiful outdoor space all year round with a few well-placed plants and outdoor items. There are plenty of hardy plants that will last through winter weather as well as lovely flowering blooms that bring bright joy to any yard during the warmer months.

Some of the best Tiki torches, heaters, and outdoor furniture will provide night time light, heat, and comfort during all the months of the year. Choosing the right light and furnishings can be confusing if you don't know the type of weather your area receives each month, or what type of materials are best for the outdoors.

Here are several ideas on how to spice up your yard into a place you will love spending time.

Weekend Dispatch

Last weekend was like summer revisited. The weather was perfect...low 80s and it was gloriously sunny and mild. Rather than hit the gym, I took my exercise outside and took advantage of the weather. Days like those are few and far between. Just last week I was practically shivering at Harper's field hockey game. Not kidding. This week, I am catching up on everything I put aside over the weekend to enjoy the weather.

Here's what else I'm up to this week:

Tips For Keeping Your Bedroom Clutter-Free

Tuesday, September 24, 2019
photo via

It’s common for bedrooms to get cluttered with stuff. Many of us don’t see this as an issue – the bedroom may well be the one room that you don’t allow guests in, so who cares if it’s messy? I am guilty of using our bedroom as a dumping ground for all the things. Books, clothes, extra pieces of furniture. Somehow it all ends up in the bedroom.

Unfortunately, a cluttered bedroom could be causing you to lose sleep. Many people find it harder to fall asleep when surrounded by clutter because the brain subconsciously feels there’s work still to be done. When your bedroom is tidy, you’re more likely to feel at peace and therefore more easily able to get to sleep.

On top of this, decluttering is useful simply for keeping your bedroom organized. You can access the things you need more easily – which can mean less stress when getting ready in the morning.

To help keep your bedroom clutter-free, here are just several steps that you can take.

The Books I Read in August

Monday, September 23, 2019

August was definitely a productive month for reading. I plowed through four books with ease and knocked a few more books off my summer reading list. It helped that each book I read this month was better than the last. There are four good ones here, so if you are looking for your next great read, you might find it here.

Here are the four books I read in August:

A Curve in the Road by Julianne MacLean    4.5/5 stars
There's a lot I loved about this book, and one of the things is that it picks up speed quickly. The book begins with a shocking car accident and everything unravels from there with plenty of surprises and twists throughout the book. The main character, Abbie, whose life seems perfect and idyllic soon learns that not all is as it seems.

Best Online Reads

Thursday, September 19, 2019

The ten stories from around the web that I am loving this week:

1. The most famous hotel in every state via House Beautiful.

2. How to fall asleep anywhere in five minutes via The Chalkboard.

3. Six things that happen to your body when you stop eating dairy via Prevention.

4 Mistakes Homeowners Make When Selling Their Property

Wednesday, September 18, 2019

When you put your home on the market, your ultimate goal is to get the asking price for it and to sell it as fast as possible. However, there are some mistakes many homeowners make that could mean a difficult experience in selling their home. The result could be the home that sits on the market longer or sells for much less than expected. Some of the mistakes they might make include the following.


5 Awesome Gift Ideas for New Parents Welcoming Their New Bundle of Joy

Tuesday, September 17, 2019

When you're looking for the perfect gifts for parents that are welcoming a newborn, there is a lot out there that. In fact, you'll find that the options are endless. Here are a few of my favorite ways to treat new parents and welcome a newborn. These gifts are sure to make both baby and parents smile.

Weekend Dispatch

Monday, September 16, 2019

Last week was the first full week of school, and surprisingly, it was an uneventful week. Things ran smoothly each morning. And I'd be lying if I didn't admit that there's a little part of me that's disappointed that my girls don't need me as much in the mornings anymore. I used to do their hair, make their breakfasts, and re-check that they had everything they needed for their day. Now, they do it all on their own. It's bittersweet, but all in, I'm happy for their independence. I have Emma's back-to-school night on Thursday, and otherwise, we are trying to keep this weekend open.

Here's what else what I'll be up to this week:


Best Online Reads

Thursday, September 12, 2019

The ten stories from around the web that I am loving this week:

1. Twenty-five ice breaker questions via Know Your Team.

2. Pop songs with surprisingly dark meanings via Ranker.

3. Ten cities that should be on everyone's bucket list via Travelocity.

Love Your Curves: 5 Fashion Tips for Making Your Body Shape Work in Your Favor

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

In most cultures, women with curvy body types are considered the pinnacle of femininity. It's only in recent decades that high fashion designers have focused on stick-figure models when they design their clothes. There's nothing wrong with either body type, but curvy women need to know how to dress for success just as much as skinny women do, but they tend to have less guidance from the fashion world.

Don't resort to just wearing the same outfit every day. Instead, learn how to love those curves and find clothes that will look great.


Happy September ~ Letter From The Editor

Monday, September 9, 2019

Anyone else trying to figure out how it has come to be September already? Whew! Summer sure did fly by. Last Wednesday when I was driving Harper to school, I couldn't help but to think that it seemed as if the summer never happened. Just like that I was back to the morning middle school commute grind. Anyway, it's good to have the girls back into a routine and back into the social swing of things.

September, here at the Jersey shore, is considered the "locals summer". Now that the summer visitors have gone home, it's our chance to enjoy the beaches...uncrowded and unspoiled. The weather in September is some of the best all year long.

Best Online Reads

Thursday, September 5, 2019

The ten stories from around the web that I am loving this week:

1. Wedding gifts the recipients will actually use (and love) via Refinery29.

2. How to perfect flat iron waves via The Beauty Department.

3. The best (and worst) airports for cheap flights via Condé Nast Traveler.

Splurge vs. Save: Bucket Bags

Wednesday, September 4, 2019
As we usher out summer, we can expect to see darker, sturdier bags for fall. Straw totes will be retired to the closet until next summer. We'll be seeing a lot more bucket bags emerging for fall. Bucket bags are a trend that rears its head every several years, and for fall 2019, it's back. Here are two versions of a very similar bag at very different price points.

5 Fab Finds Under $50

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Fall is coming, and with it comes a shift from summer's color palette to a richer darker one. Think the colors of falling leaves. This robust burgundy is such a pretty color and is flattering on just about every skin tone, even those with a reddish undertone. This week's 5 Fab Finds includes five unique products that feature this color in some way.

Simple Ways To Celebrate Your First Christmas As A Parent

Sunday, September 1, 2019
photo via

Becoming a parent is the most amazing feeling in the world. It is a time in your life when you will change the way you think, find a new perspective, and finally, find your real place in the world. The first time you become a parent is the most daunting, exciting, and exhilarating time of your life. Having a baby is a wonder, and you will soon be wrapped up in all of those parent cliches. The first Christmas you spend with a baby is a special occasion. Here are some of the ways you can make the most of your baby's first Christmas.