How to Pop Perfect Popcorn for Family Movie Night


A nice quiet evening at home is almost non existent for our family. We just have too many people with too many schedules!! However, on the off chance we get to have a night together at home, we love finding a movie we can all agree on, which is no easy task in itself, and whip up a bag of perfect family movie night popcorn for us to share.

I love to be in the kitchen, but I’ve never professed to be an amazing popcorn maker…until now! 

how to pop perfect popcorn

With seven people in our family, I don’t have time to mess around. Food needs to be ready quickly and there is absolutely zero room for error. Do you remember the last time you smelled burned popcorn? It’s terrible. And, what makes that idea even better is if you add six people complaining. Fun, right? NO! I don’t have time for that. I have to get it right, the first time!

Pop Secret knows I don’t have time for burned popcorn and they’re doing something to help us get it right the first time, and every time after that!

With the help of a their new app, Perfect Pop, I know how to pop perfect popcorn by following these easy steps:

1. Put a bag of Pop Secret in the microwave and enter the suggested cooking time from the packaging.

2.  Turn up the volume on your iPhone, point the phone’s speakers toward the microwave, and keep within 3 feet.

3. Start the microwave and start the app.

Perfect Pop listens to the microwave and tells you the precise moment your popcorn is perfect!

how to pop perfect popcorn

It’s the quickest way to have a happy family fed during family movie night!

how to pop perfect popcorn

how to pop perfect popcorn

how to pop perfect popcorn

 Not only are my kids happy to be fed, they also love participating in the entire process. It’s so easy my kids can do it! With the Perfect Pop app, the entire family can be involved with the popcorn cooking and we can banish burned popcorn for good!

Download the app and make sure you get perfect popcorn every time, too! Users must have iPhone 5+ on iOS 7+.

This post is sponsored by Pop Secret but all opinions are my own.

New and Fun Trends in Carter’s Fall Style + Giveaway

This Fall style post is sponsored by Carter’s but all opinions are my own. My love is real, y’all!

I love love love doing a little clothes shopping for my little ones. My kids love new clothes and they aren’t super picky yet, so it’s still fun for me. It’s hard to believe we are already looking at Fall styles! I’m always inspired by my friends’ kids and their cute outfits, or my Instagram feed, or Pinterest. The list is endless, really. I love seeing cute kids in cute clothes.

Don’t get me wrong. We spend plenty of days hanging out in our PJs longer than we probably should, but it sure is fun to get dressed up and have a new outfit you feel good in.

And if I could put in to words the happiness this new outfit gave this boy, you’d surely have a smile on your OWN face. 

Carter's fall style

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Something Fabulous Wednesday

Welcome to Something Fabulous Wednesday! Whether you’re here to browse for inspiration or share your own “something fabulous,” I’m so glad to have you here!

something fabulous Wednesday

In this party, you can link up anything you’ve created, such as recipes, crafts, DIY projects, printables, blog tips, and more. As long as it’s something from YOUR blog, I’d love for you to share it! Please don’t post Etsy shops, giveaways, or links to other linky parties. Fortunately, there are lots of other link parties out there to link those up.

I will be sharing my favorite links at next week’s linky party. In the meantime, though, I will share your projects on my social media channels, giving credit to you, of course! I love to share you links on Pinterest, especially! Make sure you’re following me there

To make the party more fun, visit the links others have left, because it’s always fun to see what others are up to. Leave a comment and maybe even pin the ones you like, like I’ll be doing. This makes it a party and keeps people coming back!  Though it’s not required, I would love you to link back to my post or even post my party button, which you can find the code for on the sidebar. 

So let’s party… 

Here are a few of my favorites from the last Something Fabulous Wednesday party!

Something Fabulous Wednesday

 

1. Blueberry Whoopie Pies by Sweet Silly Sara

2. Your Positive Self Image Printable Quote from Designs by Miss Mandee

3. How to Make Silly Putty by Crystal & Comp.

4. 3 Ingredient Lemon Honey Ice Cream by Just Short of Crazy

5. Stuffed Ranch Burgers from three in three

I can’t wait to see what you have to share this week!!


Chicken Salad Cracker Bites

These Chicken Salad Cracker Bites were developed as a sponsored post for #MarketStreetTX.

With Summer here, I’m always thinking about light snacks and easy meals to make. But, as usual, I’m always short on time. One of my very favorite summer foods is chicken salad. I loved it as a little girl when my mom would make it and now I still call her each time just to make sure I have the recipe right…and because I want her to know I’m making it. ;) 

Inspired by a taste station at my local Market Street, I wanted to create this chicken salad I love so much in bite sizes. I decided on Chicken Salad Cracker Bites and I raced through the store grabbing my ingredients.

chicken salad cracker bites

 

Doesn’t every mom with three small children by her side race through the grocery store?!? Yes!

Luckily this recipe is so simpl and everything I needed was easy to find in Market Street.

Anytime I’m in the grocery store, I spend a lot of time in the produce section. I feel like I secretly judge grocery stores based on their produce sections. I love variety, freshness, and bright beautiful colors!

Market Street passes that little test of mine with flying colors! Just look at these beautiful bell peppers!

market street produce

 

This month, Market Street is highlighting their Texas products. Did you know they do not sell any GMO produce and they source produce locally before they look elsewhere? I LOVE that!

So, I guess aside from getting sidetracked by the beautiful produce, I made a mad dash to get my ingredients and head home!

These were made up in no time and devoured by my entire family! It made me so happy!

Take a look at the recipe and save it for yourself! It would make the perfect appetizer to take to your next cookout or just to have on hand for your next snack attack. ;)

chicken salad ritz cracker bites

 

chicken salad cracker bites

 

Chicken Salad Cracker Bites
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Print
968 calories
39 g
592 g
51 g
88 g
13 g
569 g
511 g
28 g
0 g
32 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
569g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 968
Calories from Fat 447
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 51g
78%
Saturated Fat 13g
64%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 11g
Monounsaturated Fat 21g
Cholesterol 592mg
197%
Sodium 511mg
21%
Total Carbohydrates 39g
13%
Dietary Fiber 5g
19%
Sugars 28g
Protein 88g
Vitamin A
18%
Vitamin C
15%
Calcium
15%
Iron
31%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 1 1/2 to 2 cups of chopped chicken, cooked (I used a rotisserie chicken from Market Street)
  2. 1/3 c Miracle Whip
  3. 1/2 c Red Grapes, cut in half
  4. 1/2 c White Onion, chopped (the sweeter the better)
  5. 1 Tbsp Pickle Relish
  6. 1/4 c Pecan pieces
  7. 2 hard boiled eggs, chopped
  8. 1 sleeve of Ritz crackers (I used Honey Wheat)
Instructions
  1. Mix it all together and drop by spoonfuls on to each Ritz cracker. Garnish with pecan pieces on top.
beta
calories
968
fat
51g
protein
88g
carbs
39g
more
Roubinek Reality http://www.roubinek.net/

Those Times I Dreamed of Being a Fashion Blogger

There was a time I went more than a year without buying a new piece of clothing. It wasn’t on purpose or because I was trying to shop less. It was just pointless. I had a baby in 2009, 2010, and 2012. I was pregnant most of the time for several years. Being a fashion blogger was WAAAAAYYY off my radar.

As a matter of fact, I was mostly wearing my old clothes with no desire to buy something new because 1) I would hate the size I was buying or 2) the size of my body was changing so much so why even bother. I didn’t even really know my true size.

I’ve also POURED myself into my family and kids over the past 5+ years. I felt guilty buying anything for myself unless I had a coupon or it was on sale. Isn’t that ridiculous?! But, it’s EXACTLY how I felt, like everyone else needed to come before me. I still struggle with that. Guilt guilt guilt. It’s never ending. :)

So, I have admired all of these fashion bloggers from afar and thought how cool that would be. But, I still don’t think I could ever be one, although I LOVE any chance I get to show off fun new clothes. It’s just that I don’t think I could ever afford to be one. Really, I don’t know how anyone affords it. New clothes are expensive! :)

However, a few weeks ago, I decided to indulge a little for myself. My favorite new online store, Kiki La Rue, was having a warehouse sale and they just happen to be in DFW, too!

We’re talking shirts, pants, and dresses for $10 and $15. It was crazy. I went home with a LOT of clothes and hardly any money spent!

The best part of the night for Emily and me was getting to meet the shop owner and even posing for a picture. Of course, after she put me in this gypsy kimono I fell in love with it and had to have it. It wasn’t part of the sale, but sometimes you just have to make exceptions. LOL!

 I have had so many compliments on this kimono. It’s different and interesting. I love it!

Another shirt I went home with was this cute Aztec print. It was $15!! I paired it with my new PDDK denim jeans and called it a win!

But my very very very favorite purchase was this cute Champs Maxi dress. Of course, it was so much better when little miss Brantley and I went on a matchy matchy date together with her Daddy! :)

I loved getting dressed up and snapping some pictures, but I’m pretty sure fashion blogger will never be my exclusive title. I still don’t know how those fashion bloggers fund their fun habit. However, I’m still planning to add more fashion posts whenever I can.

I LOVE fashion and wearing a cute outfit is one of those little things that makes me happy! \

We should all do a little more of what makes us happy!!

Something Fabulous Wednesday

Welcome to Something Fabulous Wednesday! Whether you’re here to browse for inspiration or share your own “something fabulous,” I’m so glad to have you here!

something fabulous Wednesday

In this party, you can link up anything you’ve created, such as recipes, crafts, DIY projects, printables, blog tips, and more. As long as it’s something from YOUR blog, I’d love for you to share it! Please don’t post Etsy shops, giveaways, or links to other linky parties. Fortunately, there are lots of other link parties out there to link those up.

I will be sharing my favorite links at next week’s linky party. In the meantime, though, I will share your projects on my social media channels, giving credit to you, of course! I love to share you links on Pinterest, especially! Make sure you’re following me there

To make the party more fun, visit the links others have left, because it’s always fun to see what others are up to. Leave a comment and maybe even pin the ones you like, like I’ll be doing. This makes it a party and keeps people coming back!  Though it’s not required, I would love you to link back to my post or even post my party button, which you can find the code for on the sidebar. 

So let’s party… 

Here are a few of my favorites from the last Something Fabulous Wednesday party!

Something Fabulous Wednesday

 

1. Savory Blueberry Pizza from Sweet Silly Sara

2. Kid Made Glass Suncatchers from Kids Activities Blog

3. Pork Ribs with Mango Habanero Sauce from three in three

4. Farm Market Pizza Recipe from Just Short of Crazy

5. Free Printable Home Organizing Lists from eliza ellis

I can’t wait to see what you have to share this week!!

 

Bloom Where You’re Planted

I’ve always been a pretty laid back, easy going girl. I usually do pretty well rolling with the punches and taking on whatever comes our way and I’m still doing that in the middle of a life event I’d rather not happen. A life event that’s overwhelming and taking all of my time and energy.

We’re moving. 

The moving part isn’t so bad. We have things figured out somewhat, at least for the near future, but we still have a gaping hole of uncertainty left in our moving timeline. We don’t know our final stop. 

We don’t have a house picked out.

We’re packing up the house we’ve loved living in for the past three and a half years. It’s a house we’ve rented and we knew moving was more than likely the eventual outcome, but our hearts were happy when we heard the seller wanted to sell the house. We thought we could become the eventual owners. However, after much discussion with the owners and their realtors, we finally realized we weren’t going to come to an agreement and we had to let the door close on that idea. 

It was a sad day.

While there is a part of me that is a little excited about the possibility of something better in our future, I hate leaving the neighborhood we’ve called home for more than 5 years. If you know me personally, you know how much I LOVE our neighborhood. If you’ve read my blog, you have probably read about my neighborhood babysitting co-op and our vegetable co-op. I’m even a part of a dinner co-op, which is fantastic, but something I haven’t written about yet. The bottom line is there’s not much our neighborhood doesn’t have and it’s an amazing place to raise a family.

It’s hard to leave but the positive side keeps reminding me you just have to bloom where you’re planted. There will be more friends and more opportunities wherever we land and it’s up to me to make the best of it for myself and our family.

bloom where you're planted

 

We have one day left to finish packing up the house before the movers come at 7:00am on Sunday. 

For now, we are putting everything in storage and heading to Jeff’s dad’s house until we can find a house of our own. So extremely thankful they are willing to take us in and that they have the room for us. Hoping they still love us by the time we leave. :)

I’m also so thankful for my parents who were willing to take the little ones for the weekend. Did you know that packing a house with little people is like packing in the middle of a tornado? As soon as I get a box full and walk away without closing it up, I find pieces from the box in other parts of the house. It’s been fun, I tell ya! ;) Definitely a learning experience!

It’s a seller’s market out there, which makes it a lot harder for us to find what we’d like, but I have faith and I’m praying for the right situation to come along for our family. 

The sooner the better, though. :)

Something Fabulous Wednesday | 4th of July Crafts & Recipes

Welcome to Something Fabulous Wednesday! Whether you’re here to browse for inspiration or share your own “something fabulous,” I’m so glad to have you here!

something fabulous Wednesday

In this party, you can link up anything you’ve created, such as recipes, crafts, DIY projects, printables, blog tips, and more. As long as it’s something from YOUR blog, I’d love for you to share it! Please don’t post Etsy shops, giveaways, or links to other linky parties. Fortunately, there are lots of other link parties out there to link those up.

I will be sharing my favorite links at next week’s linky party. In the meantime, though, I will share your projects on my social media channels, giving credit to you, of course! I love to share you links on Pinterest, especially! Make sure you’re following me there

To make the party more fun, visit the links others have left, because it’s always fun to see what others are up to. Leave a comment and maybe even pin the ones you like, like I’ll be doing. This makes it a party and keeps people coming back!  Though it’s not required, I would love you to link back to my post or even post my party button, which you can find the code for on the sidebar. 

So let’s party… 

I changed it up a little this week because I just had to share some of my favorite 4th of July Recipes and Crafts from around the internets.

4th of July crafts recipes

1. 4th of July Cookies from Sweet Bella Roos

2. Burlap Flag Pillow from Simply Kierste

3. DIY July 4th Firecrackers from Roubinek Reality

4. Firecracker Popcorn from The Nerd’s Wife

5. Star Spangled Desserts from Giggles Galore

I can’t wait to see what you have to share this week and I hope you have an amazing 4th of July holiday weekend!

10 Reasons to Put Passport to Imagination® at Michaels® Stores on Your Summer Schedule

I’m always looking for fun things to do with my kids during the summer days when I’m continually doing a double check on my sanity. I prefer them to be laid back, inexpensive, and easy for me to make happen. I haven’t taken my kids swimming yet this summer because it’s just too much work having 3 kids who can’t swim and one whose diaper I have to constantly check. The pool is supposed to be relaxing but it’s so very NOT for me. ;) 

That’s why I was so excited to learn about the schedule of summer fun Michaels® has for kids, called Passport to Imagination, which includes 2 hour crafting classes three days each week, geared toward kids ages 5 to 12.

I got a friend from my neighborhood babysitting co-op to watch Brantley and Riverson, while Langston and I went to Michaels® for a little one on one time in the name of crafting!

passport to imagination

We had such a great time together and LOVED the project we went home with. I wanted to share 10 reasons why I think YOU need to add Passport to Imagination crafting classes at Michaels® to your summer schedule!

10 Reason to Add Passport to Imagination to Your Summer Schedule

1. It’s $2!

passport to imagination

2. No clean up at home. It’s at Michaels® stores. You show up with nothing and leave with a fun project!

3. Opportunity to get out of the house for a fun activity.

4. Make new friends. 

passport to imagination

5. No need to buy supplies to keep around. They provide it all for you there.

6. Go home with a fun passport that offers at-home project ideas, tech-free learning ideas, and additional activities all stemming from the craft of the day.

7. It’s $2 per child!

8. It’s 3 days per week (Monday, Wednesday, and Friday), 10:00am to 12:00pm, until August 1st.

9. There’s a different project for every class, all following a different theme each week!

passport to imagination

10. You’ll love the smile on your child’s face!

passport to imagination

And did I mention it’s only $2 per child?!? That’s almost FREE!

Check the schedule and register here for Passport to Imagination at your local Michaels®. You’ll be so glad you did! And if you live close to me, maybe Langston and I will see you there! 

George Strait and The Cowboy Rides Away Tour Finale

There are not many things I have been able to make happen for my husband that have made him quite as happy as the experience he had almost two weeks ago. Thanks to Verizon DFW, it was a ticket to see George Strait in concert. And not just any concert, either! This was the last stop for King George in his Cowboy Rides Away Tour, which just happened to be in Dallas!

When I realized I wouldn’t be able to attend the event, I asked if Jeff could go in my place. They said, “OK!” It made his YEAR!

Since this was his night and experience, I had to let him take the stage on the blog:

The Cowboy Rides Away Tour Finale

Cowboy Rides Away Tour

My thanks to Verizon for the opportunity to not only enjoy my all-time favorite artist, but to provide such an awesome setting to create the lifelong memories I will carry with me was truly unimaginable. 

From the car service provided by Uber from my home, to the stadium, and back home again, to the Verizon suite with food, drinks, and great company, I was spoiled all night long!

I can honestly say my love for the man, known as King George, started early on for me.  It’s not hard to recall the first time I heard his music. I was six years old riding with my Mom to Houston from our house in Beaumont and it was just as he was really starting to gain big popularity in South Texas.  This would have been around 1985 and his 3rd album, “Something Special,” which remains one of my Moms favorites to this day, had just been released. 

By the time I was eight, I was hooked. Whether it was attempting to sing his songs all the time or sporting the wranglers and starched shirts, I was all in.  We were living in Dallas by this point, and my Mom surprised me with one of the greatest gifts I’ve received to date which was to accompany her to his annual New Year’s Eve show at Reunion Arena.  Needless to say my infatuation for him goes a long way back, and again, I’m truly grateful to Verizon for the opportunity to experience his last concert on his very final tour.

cowboy rides away tour

To say the lineup of artists was impressive would be the understatement of the year.   There’s a lot to be said about these normally headlining artists putting their own egos/agendas aside to show their love and admiration for this man, evident by the fact that they weren’t singing their songs, they were helping sing their favorites of his. 

cowboy rides away tour

For someone who loves just about each and every one of them, it made for a truly awesome arrangement and the goose bump moments were countless. 

From George performing with his son Bubba,

cowboy rides away tour

to Alan Jackson halting the show to give a shared Jack & water toast, crediting King George as one of his country music heroes,

cowboy rides away tour

cowboy rides away tour

I was just in awe.

cowboy rides away tour

Vince Gill and George Strait

Cowboy Rides Away Tour

George Strait and Faith Hill

Cowboy Rides Away Tour

George Strait and Martina McBride

Cowboy Rides Away Tour

George Strait and Miranda Lambert

I could go on and on about other examples, but I will sum it up by simply saying “What a show!” From the seats provided by Verizon, to the venue, the record breaking 100,000+ crowd for an indoor concert, the all-star lineup, and most of all, the man referred to as King George. It all provided the ingredients for the most memorable concert and performance I will probably ever experience in my lifetime. 

cowboy rides away tour

Thank you, Verizon. I will be forever grateful!

A little More About Uber

Using Uber was a first for me. I’m very familiar with using a car service, but this was a step up. I loved the ease of downloading the app, requesting the car through the app, and watching, via the map on the app, the car come to my house from their location.

Everything was so fast and easy! I would highly recommend a service like this for those who don’t want to bother with the hassle of parking at an event or maybe just don’t want to have to worry about driving home from an event. Especially if there is drinking involved, this idea is something I can’t recommend enough!

Uber has also provided you all a code to be used on your first ride, which will offer you $20 any vehicle type. All you have to do is sign up here and use the code JMROUBINEK.

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