Sunday, February 24, 2013

#Win Sew Red: Sewing and Quilting for Women's Heart Health #Review and Giveaway

Every 90 seconds, a woman in the United States has a heart attack. 
Both men and women suffer heart attacks, but they are often more fatal in women.
More than 10,000 American women younger than 45 have a heart attack every year.

Sobering statistics reported in the Heart Healthy Living section of my latest product review and giveaway.  I am honored to have the opportunity to bring you Sew Red: Sewing and Quilting for Women's Heart Health. Sew Red is part of author Laura Zander's  and her Jimmy Beans Wool heart healthy campaign Stitch Red, which hopes to educate the public  and raise awareness  of the startling reality of these statistics.

As a book, Sew Red is a beautiful compellation of 30 red themed sewing and quilting projects, each brought to you by some of the biggest names in the crafting world, including some of my favorites, Anna Griffin, Nancy Zieman, Kaffe Fassett and Ty Pennington.  Each project features a bio of the designer, and his/her tip for a heart healthy life.
The projects represent a good variety of style, time required, and skill level, showcased in its full photo table of contents. Each project includes material requirements, supplies, cutting instructions, and sewing instructions.  Illustrations are plentiful helpful, making instructions easy to follow. Patterns are enclosed in an envelope at the end of the book and are made of good quality paper (not the flimsy tissue paper patterns), making storage and reuse of the patterns possible.  I also love the spiral binding of the book, making it much easier in the sewing room to fold the book flat to a single page. 
As someone who aspires to sew so much more, I really love the rich variety of fabric patterns represented within the single color theme.  I especially love the sweet sixteen skirt, the Sonoma purse, and the Fleur Rouge Quilt.  I hope to bring you photos of my work--probably not until the summer.

Beyond what you would typically expect to find in an average sewing book, you will find a heart healthy living section, which features information, tips, resources and even recipes.  I'm very excited to give the heart healthy macaroni and cheese recipe a try... I'm sure it has to be tons better for me than my current family favorite.

Sew Red retails for 22.95, a portion of the proceeds benefit the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health in support of The Heart Truth®, a national awareness campaign for women about heart disease, sponsored by the NHLBI. The Publisher has generously offered to share a copy of Sew Red with one of Kat's Adventure Book's lucky readers.  To enter, please use the Rafflecopter entry below.

Please note that I received a free copy of Sew Red in exchange of my fair and honest review.  I received no additional compensation.  All opinions are my own." rel="nofollow">a Rafflecopter giveaway


Monday, February 18, 2013

Updates: Resolutions

As you may recall I recently posted about my New Year's resolutions. As expected, I was unable to keep nearly as many as I had hoped to. In some ways, I'm glad that I put these thoughts in writing. They are proof of my efforts if also proof of my failings. So here's my progress, for those of you keeping track. I'm count one my desire to stay in better communication I've been semi successful. I did write at least three different emails to keep in touch with friends. However, I didn't place all those phone calls I had hoped to.
Diet and exercise has been a complete disaster. There were too many holiday leftovers to enjoy, too much hectic schedule,too many family visits to really get into it. This week I'm resolving the start over smaller steps same goal and with a much stronger desire to not disappoint.
Reading has been going extremely well. Since my school is adopting one-to-one technology program, I now have an iPad which I used to listen to books during my commute, also while I'm doing dishes. I've also been using the iPad to do quite a bit of reading of electronic books which means I am never without something to read. Look for more book reviews soon.
And finally on the issue of being more grateful... I believe I struggle with this one the most. It is my goal this month to work toward letting people know how much I appreciate them and how grateful I am for all they do. StumbleUpon

Friday, February 1, 2013

Progresso Recipe Starters Game Day Review and Giveaway!

It sure has been a long time since I've had the opportunity to bring you a great product to win.  Where does the time go?
Want to win an amazing appetizer kit like this?  Read more.

Today I'd love to tell you about our experience with Progresso's Recipe Starters.  Its just the sort of thing to get you ready for the big game.  As a mother, it's also just the sort of staple to keep stashed in your pantry for a quick but satisfying weeknight meal.
Remember all of those casseroles your mother used to make using a can of cream of mushroom? Well you can make those and so much more with Progresso's Recipe Starters.  They come in five great varieties:
Creamy Parmesan Basil
Creamy Portabella Mushroom
Creamy Roasted Garlic
Creamy Three Cheese
and Fire Roasted Tomato

For the purposes of this review, we received a can of Creamy Roasted Garlic.  If you are ever at a loss for what to make for dinner, I love that each can has a great recipe printed on it.  The other night, nothing sounded good, so I nearly made the Chicken Pot Pie recipe printed on the can.  Instead, in the spirit of getting prepped for game day, we tried the Easy White Chicken Chili.  I'm a huge white chicken chili fan--a local restaurant serves the best white chicken chili--if they were closer, I think I would have to pick some up for lunch daily--it's sooo good.

As it is written, this is a super easy, super tasty meal that would be so quick. Combine these ingredients, warm through, top with tortillas and sour cream--super easy.
  • 2 cans (18 oz each) Progresso™ Recipe Starters™ creamy roasted garlic with chicken stock cooking sauce
  • 2 cups cubed deli rotisserie chicken
  • 1 can (15 oz) Progresso® cannellini beans, drained, rinsed
  • 1 can (4.5 oz) Old El Paso® chopped green chiles
  • 4 teaspoons Old El Paso® taco seasoning mix (from 1-oz package)
Of course, I never do things the easy way.  I only had the one can of recipe starters, and I'm cheap and never buy already cooked chicken.  I think rotisserie chicken is a brilliant idea though--I've read in multiple places how it makes cooking so much easier. I really should aspire to be a rotisserie chicken buying girl. 
 As it was, I took two chicken leg quarters I had--and boiled those down in a small pot of water (seasoned with some fresh garlic, parsley salt and pepper) for about 30 minutes--ish. I pulled the chicken, cooled till I could handle it, then proceeded with the next steps.  Lacking both cans of recipe starter, I cut back a little  on the beans, chiles and spices.  It felt like I had too much chicken--even though I like a pretty hearty soup, so I added a little of the stock from cooking my chicken.  (of course, I then proceeded to add too much stock-- so I tempered some sour cream in to the mix).

The moral of this story: There are easier ways--and for the game on Sunday, I will be resorting to those far easier methods. I find ways to make what should be a simple meal into one that's fairly complex.  The good news, it tasted awesome, was very filling and with the recent arctic blast here, I was glad of a meal that warmed our house.

Need some ideas for the big day?  Check out these other great recipes.

 Bacon Stuffed Mushrooms featuring Creamy Portabella Mushroom
Chicken and Ham Slab Sandwiches featuring Creamy Portabella Mushroom
Chorizo Con Queso featuring Creamy Three Cheese
Pulled Chicken Sandwiches featuring Fire Roasted Tomato 
 Want some help getting started?  Check out this great coupon:

In addition to my can of Progresso Recipe I received an entire Recipe Starters gift set of a beautiful 10 piece cheese and appetizer set--including a gorgeous bamboo cutting board. 

Disclosure:  The information, products and Progresso™ Recipe Starters™ gift packs were provided by Progresso through MyBlogSpark. I received no additional compensation.  My opinions are 100% my own. 

Want a chance to win, Use the rafflecopter entry below.
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