Archive for Uncategorized

20 Jul 2014

A Little Life in Pictures: Tips for Better Pictures on Social Media

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Happy Sunday! I enjoy taking pictures, especially of my kids. It’s not an unknown thing as most of the time I’m the one snapping away. So it’s not surprising I have over 5,000 photos on my phone. So why not share! I obviously have enough to go around. And if I don’t, what good do they do just sitting on my computer. Maybe they will make someone else’s day.

Ameture Photo Tip:

All of my pictures are taken on an iPhone 5s. If you want better pictures, consider using a photo editor on your phone. I LOVE Fotor. Once edited, share on your social networks! Guaranteed you’ll love your photos.

And if you want to edit online, PicMonkey is da BOMB! You can thank me later!

xo~ Marisa

PS…Do you use a photo editor? If so, which one and why?! I’m always into learning new tricks too!

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08 Jul 2014

Marvel Universe Live Tampa Bay Giveaway

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Our favorite venue to go and see shows with the kids is by far the Tampa Bay Times Forum! The shows are of the highest caliber and we never have a blocked view!
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07 Jul 2014

Dear Summer…Please don’t end.

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Definitely one for the books. We are livin’ it up this summer in every possible way. Life is too short not too. I know it can be hard having the kids “home” but honestly, I have no desire to spend lots of money on camps, just to have them not want to be home with me. The time will come when they will want to hang more with friends and less with us. It’s around the corner and will be here before I know it. I’m sure I will blink and beg for these days to return. So I try to remember that when 4 kids gets the best of me and I want to do is wave the white flag for the day.

But for now, today, I’m basking in the sounds of little kids laughter… smiles for miles about frozen yogurt, pool dates, play dates and movie nights with popcorn.

Yes, it’s a challenge when one works, but for now, for this year, I’m going make like I won the lottery and keep livin’ the good life. After all, it’s called summer vacation for a reason.

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04 Jul 2014

Simply Summer: American Made

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My husbands favorite holiday. I think it is because it feels like classic summer time and childhood memories. Love this great country and blessed to raise kids here. Happy July 4th!

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28 Jun 2014

Summertime 2014: #kidsonvacation

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Summer is in full swing! Two weeks down! Photo dump Saturday! Lots of adventures and more to come.

14 Jun 2014

Today’s Life Lesson: It’s Not Good Bye. It’s See You Later. (Among Other Lessons Learned From A Military Family)

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Teaching life lessons to our kids seems to come more often as they get older. Maybe that’s because they understand better and can actually comprehend what is going on, now that they are the wise old age of 8.

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02 Jun 2014

Best Swimming Lessons for Kids in Tampa Bay

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My fourth little one has finally started swimming lessons. Being that she is 22 months old, I know she should have started younger, but that’s another story.

Living in Florida, swimming lessons are a must. Early on. No matter what. We have lakes, rivers, pools and the Gulf of Mexico in our backyard and don’t you want your child to have fun enjoying all that Florida has to offer?

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01 Jun 2014

Best Poolside Cocktail

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Lazy summer days are here and this cocktail will have you enjoying your summer days at the pool or on the porch. This drink is summer in every sip.

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Simple Sunshine

2 oz Vodka or Gin
4oz Diet Tonic
4oz Grapefruit Juice (must be real… I prefer Simply Grapefruit)
Squeez of lime
Lime or Pink Grapefruit wedge to garnish

Delicious. Refreshing. PERFECT!

14 May 2014

Raising Cirque du Soleil Future Performers

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If you read through the many biographies on the Cirque du Soleil website you will see a common theme: youth gymnastics and dance at an early age. Having two young aspiring gymnasts in my house, I understand the time and dedication that it takes for these performers to get to the stage that they are on today.

I truly enjoy taking my children to see Cirque du Soleil performances because I do want them to know that what they are doing now, could possibly be a career someday if they really wanted to continue something they love doing. My goal for exposing them to these non-traditional careers is to show them that should be ultimately doing something they love to do.

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Inspiring young gymnasts everywhere, Cirque du Soleil is an amazing show that will hopefully inspire children to to follow their dreams and keep this art alive. With over 100,000 million people attending a Cirque performance since 1984, this visual art show, blending gymnastics, dance and music along with special effects and more, there will be many openings for the right people when the time is right in the future for our children.

And as the King of Pop has had lasting musical impressions on us as children, it’s time our children were introduced to his iconic music as well. As Michael Jackson was know for his intense energy on stage and unforgettable concerts, you will be treated to a visual nirvana of music and acrobatic talent that will let you feel the energy as you watch and remember what an impact that this superstar has left on pop culture. (I’m personally hoping that my kids will enjoy his music as much as I did and still do!)

Musical Designer, Kevin Attunes, is taking Michael’s “music to a whole new level.” By combining more than 35 of Jackson’s songs, we will not only hear Michael Jackson’s music but feel him trough the visual recreations inspired by his iconic videos and enhanced by the Cirque du Soleil acrobatics and theatrical performers.

Coming only May 20 and 21 to Tampa at the Tampa Bay Times Forum is a new must-see Cirque du Soleil show: Michael Jackson THE IMMORTAL World Tour. Only traveling to 14 cities, the energetic and electrifying music from the King of Pop will combine Curque du Soleil world renown performers and the Kings music to bring you a show unlike no other.

Created by Cirque du Soleil and directed by Jamie King, THE IMMORTAL World Tour is a departure from the company’s previous touring shows. Featuring 49 international dancers, musicians, and acrobats, it is presented in a rock concert format that combines the excitement and innovation of Michael Jackson’s music and choreography with Cirque du Soleil’s unparalleled creativity.

Inspire the little gymnast, dancer performer or musician in your life! If you have an opportunity to take your future cast member to this show, it will be a performance that they will never forget. Teach them to reach for the stars and enjoy the life that they are to lead!

Tickets available at www.cirquedusoleil.com/MichaelJackson and www.Ticketmaster.com or by calling 1-800-745-3000. Tickets range from $50 to $125 each.

The Tampa dates are May 20 – 21 and the performances will be at the Tampa Bay Times Forum.

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My family and I have been invited to attend the Michael Jackson THE IMMORTAL World Tour. All opinions are my own.

12 May 2014

Best Almond Butterscotch Biscotti EVER

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I’ve never been a biscotti fan until recent. Not sure if it’s the convenient nature of them but I have been baking them non-stop since I learned how easy they are.

My favorite have been tweaked and perfected to bring you this delicious breakfast treat you’ll have to try at your next special occasion.

My Mom LOVES this recipe, so on this Mother’s Day, I thought I’d share her favorite recipe that I make especially for her.

I loved to cook with my Mom growing up. Baking was so much fun with her. I know my kids love cooking with me just as I did with her. Cooking with kids is such a great way to learn, bond and try new things. We hope you’ll try one of our recipes!

Best Almond Butterscotch Biscotti

2 cups flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
3 eggs
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
2 tbls rum
1/2 cup almonds
1/3 cup butterscotch chips

Toast the almond at 350 degrees for 10 minutes and set aside.

Mix flour, sugar, baking powder & salt and set aside.

Mix eggs, vanilla, almond extract & rum and set aside.

Preheat oven at 300 degrees.

Mix dry and wet together adding in the toasted almonds and butterscotch.

The mix will be sticky.

Use non-stick cooking spray and spray a cooking sheet.

Mold your loaf into a flat loaf. It will not rise and will keep the shape you mold.

Bake at 300 degrees for 50 minutes.

Take out and cut into bars using a serrated knife.

Put the bars back on the sheet and bake for another 15 minutes at 300 degrees.

Let cool. Store or freeze.

Enjoy with a cup of your favorite coffee!

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