May 24, 2018

How To Throw The Best Backyard BBQ This Summer

This post is sponsored by Tyson Foods, Inc., but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

Well hello summer! And nothing says summer quite like throwing a little party, whose main purpose is to get your friends to enjoy a little gathering outside. To elevate your game, I've shared a few food, fun and drinks to help you throw the best backyard BBQ this summer. Don't fire up your grill without these few things!

Food
1. Easy Cheesy Chicken Sandwiches - My children devour chicken like it's going out of style so why not enjoy the taste of it on top of melted cheddar cheese, leafy spinach and of course, the perfect Ball Park Burger Buns! It's a simple grill, place your toppings and chow down in minutes. Here's what you need!

1. Tyson® Bonless Skinless Chicken Breasts
2. Cheddar Cheese
3. Spinach
4. Ball Park® Burger Buns

Directions:
1. Grill your chicken breasts for 10-15 minutes per side
2. Place chicken breasts on a Ball Park® Burger Bun
3. Add your cheddar cheese and spinach
4. Place the top part of the Ball Park® Burger Bun on top of your sandwich ( my kids aren't huge fans of having condiments so we just dunk ours in ketchup )
it's going out of style so why not enjoy
the taste of it on top of melted cheddar cheese, leafy spinach and of
course, the perfect Ball Park® Burger Buns!
It's simple to grill, place your toppings and chow down in mi
nutes. Here's what you need!
®

2. Ball Park Hot Dogs - Nothin' says a goo 'ol fashion BBQ then delicious Ball Park® Hot Dogs! You just have a few minutes on each side once your grill is going and then top them with your favorite toppings including our favorite condiment, mustard!

3. Quick Dips- I love creating easy dips that I can literally whip up in minutes before the guests arrive. Some of my favorite include this amazing edible cookie dough ( it's gone in seconds ) and for my spicy friends, this JalapeƱo dip.

Drinks

1. Refreshing Iced Tea - Due to living in the South for 3 years, we've become accustom to delicious sweet tea. Lipton® Iced Tea Bags are the perfect summer drink to enjoy with your meal plus it only takes minutes to make, sip and enjoy.

2. Summer Cocktails- I always have a huge adult beverages to create when gathering up with friends and cocktails are one of my favorites. I love a good fizzy grapefruit margarita or a blackberry mojito. Why not make up your own to celebrate your summer?

3. Water - Not everyone may enjoy iced tea or cocktails so make sure to have plenty of water for everyone to stay hydrated during your BBQ event. You can even make cute labels that may go along with your BBQ theme.

Tips To Hosting
1. Make Sure you Have Enough IceThis may seem obvious, but volume is key here. More than you think you need. A quick rule of thumb is one pound of ice per person, per hour. The last thing you need is the beer getting warm. That would be disastrous.

2. Keep bugs away- If you suddenly notice your guests slowly trickling out, it’s probably because they’ve become an all-you-can-eat buffet for gnats, green heads, and mosquitos.  Try using a lantern that actually repels bugs or bringing in natural oils like peppermint. 

3. Make Clean Up Easy- Try not to worry about dirty dishes or utensil by providing an easier option! Paper plates, cups, napkins and utensils! The worst part is trying to pick everything up but having a trash can near by for your guests to throw everything away will make it easy for you when the night is over. 
I was able to get all my ingredients at my local Walmart! They make it super easy to gather what I need at their one stop shop and head on home to get my grilling on! 


How will you enjoy throwing a backyard BBQ this summer?


May 22, 2018

5 Girl Boss Podcasts To Binge Listen Right Now

Hello hello there my loves! I've gotten a lot of questions asking about what are some top podcasts I've been listening to the last few months and ahhhh I am so excited to not only share some of my top favorites but YOURS too!

A lot of you have written to me through e-mail or DMs and really gave me some great choices so here are a few of them! I listen to them while on a walk with Landon either in the morning or afternoon ( depending on his great clingy move right as you all have seen on InstaStories ) but these always keep motivated, inspired and encouraged to keep going through blogging and I hope they can help you with your big dreams, goals and branding your own business!

1 Magic Lessons With Elizabeth Gilbert - If you haven't read Big Magic then you're missing out! I loved love loved the book and when I heard there was a podcast in the works I jumped on it! I started at the beginning of the podcast and kept working me way through. They are all worth writing down to make notes on because I find myself extremely motivated after listening for a few minutes. Plus, Liz has some great quotes that she shares that has helped her along the way too! I can't wait for you to listen to it!

2.. Goal Diggers by Jenna Kutcher - I've actually been listening to Jenna a few years ago when she first started her podcast in 2016. Girls, she is amazing! Her podcasts always leave me inspired, encouraged and she is brutally honest with her episodes but gives you the strength and tools to keep you going. She has some great guests stars that make me laugh and keep a making mental notes all throughout listening for future blog posts.

3. Super Soul with Oprah - I recently began listening to this when a friend shared an episode that inspired her. Oprah talks about her greatest teaching is helping all of us remember that it 'takes time to find our passion and encourages to take time to find your happiness'. She has guests from celebrities to authors, comedians and poets who share their wisdom, tackle tough topics and keep you laughing, crying and inspiring to find your true calling.

4. The MFCEO Podcast- A friend recommended this podcast to me that has a lot of great talking points to those who wants to puruse their goals and profits in business. Any Frisella and his variety of guests share their insights on their success and even failures in a 'no BS fashion'. His motivation is motivated by his desire to help those people succeed in life and in business. He helps them move in the right directions to achieve their goals, regardless of what they might be! I love that he doesn't sugar coat anything either! #AdultLanguage is used so I wouldn't blast this on in the car with your kids.

5. The Influencer Podcast by Julie Solomon- For those of you that may be overwhelmed with the ever changing trends of social marketing, Julie breaks it all down for you and makes it so not so scary to jump right in. I love that she grabs successful bloggers like myself to give their insights onto what has been successful, goals, and how to grow your business from the inside out. It's a most for bloggers!

What are some of your own podcasts or books that you love to read or listen too when you're needing a pick me up?

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May 21, 2018

#MondayMatters How You Can Impact Others

Hello there friends and happy Monday to you all! Phew- the weather has finally been amazing here in the Chicagoland area so I'm about to continue prancing around in some jean shorts ( THESE are my go too right now ) sandals and hat to enjoy this gorgeous sunshine. How's the weather where you are? I shared a few other favorites for the summer on my Friday Favorites so check it out!

Grab a cup of coffee my friends ( or your delicious matcha green tea ) and curl up on the couch because I want to share a few questions that a few of you have been asking me about for the last few weeks. It's about how we can impact others as bloggers and it's such a great question that I thought I'd address it here for everyone to see.

How can YOU impact others? 

Well first, make sure that you're present on Instagram. That is to say, have an account on Instagram. Also, make sure your profile tells others exactly who you are and what you do. To me, it's one of the most valuable parts of your account. A few moments spent optimizing it now will make all the difference to your followers.

Be Active- If you begin to build your Instagram, some will come but they probably won't stay. If you really want to attract your followers who will engage with you, spread your message and keep coming back ,you have to become active within your community. Instagram also uses various algorithms that determine the importance of your posts based on levels of your engagement so, if you're not actively participating, your posts are less likely to be seen.

Be YOU - You don't have to be a polished posting machine from the first day- in fact, I find it better if you're not. Instagram provides an amazing opportunity to be real with your audience and take them behind the scenes to build affinity for your organization. Bring them on a journey with you. Share an easy DIY tutorial for them. Show them what posts your up too. Don't feel like wearing make up, then don't! We want to get to know who YOU are. It's less about the hard sell and more about providing content that entertains or addresses common points.

Numbers Shouldn't Count - This might be easier said then done but numbers shouldn't count when it comes to impacting others. I remember when I first started out blogging and would get comments from those I had never met saying how my positive posts would be there to help them when they woke up in the morning or how this post really changed their thought process on a certain topic.

Success Looks Different For Everyone - A few of you heard me talking about this on my InstaStories last week but if you hadn't, I wanted to share it again here on my blog. I can't stress enough that numbers shouldn't matter and success looks different for everyone in the blog world, in business, in your private and personal life. To someone, success could be making 6 figures, or it could be finally breaking 1,000 followers on one of your social platforms. It could be writing a great pitch to a favorite brand and them saying YES to working with you. My success? Sure- I've been blogging for 8 years and no where near 6 figures or having 40,000 followers and that's ok! My success is getting e-mails, DMS or comments from you all saying a post has impacted you. It's the connection that I'm making with you.

So friends, how can you impact others? What are you going to do to start this week and impact your followers, your family, your friends, your coworkers? Share in the comments below! Get after today!


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