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Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Watermelon, Feta, & Arugula Salad

Watermelon is a sure fire hit around my house in the summertime. Perfectly divine all on it's own, it provides the kiddos with a great source of hydration and fiber. However, there are times when I crave a slightly more "grown up" version of this delicious treat. That's why I just had to share this fabulous recipe I came across in the archives of Bon Appetit's totally yummy and super refreshing! I've also tried substituting herbed goat cheese in place of the feta for a tasty spin *smile*.

8 servings
Fred Thompson
Photograph by Elinor Carucci
July 2009


  • 1 5-ounce package baby arugula
  • 8 cups 3/4-inch cubes seedless watermelon
  • 1 7-ounce package feta cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar glaze
  • Ingredient Tip

    Balsamic vinegar glaze can be found in the vinegar section at many supermarkets. If unavailable, boil 3/4 cup balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan until reduced to 3 tablespoons, 6 to 7 minutes.


  • Arrange arugula over large platter. Scatter watermelon, then feta over. Drizzle with balsamic glaze and sprinkle with pepper.

Wordless Wednesday: Hosing Off

Ahhh, there's nothing like a great game of Sprinkler Tag...and clean-up is a breeze!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Have You Voted Today?

Thank you to all of our fabulous customers and followers for making the past year for Ellia C. Naturals so successful. Our growth and expansion have been possible because of YOU and we are forever grateful!

We would be honored if you would continue your support by taking a minute to cast your vote for us in the StartUp Nation Leading Moms in Business Competition HERE. Please help us spread the word about the incredible products that you have found and reported to be so effective. You can vote daily from now until August 31st *wink*!


Friday, June 25, 2010

FREE Shipping Friday!

Whoo Hoo, it's Friday! In honor of this glorious weekend and the overdose of beautiful sunshine we've been having lately,
shop today and receive FREE shipping on all Baby Treats, ElliaCNaturals products, and The Layla Grace Collection. Use shipping option FRIDAY at checkout.

Offer good for shipping within the continental U.S., Alaska, and Hawaii. Promotion ends at 11:59pm 6/25/10

* If purchasing additional items, select the shipping option that corresponds to the total of non-promotional items ordered. Thank you.

Friday Food For Thought

We worry about
what a child will become tomorrow,
yet we forget
that he is someone today.

~ Stacia Tauscher

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Party Time at Tip Junkie!

Be sure to stop by Tip Junkie to check out all of the fabulous Creative Birthday Party Themes featured today. My little Ellie Bean's Spring Fling Birthday Bash can be found under #20! For some reason, it's linking to general bday posts on my blog, but no worries...just scroll down to the 2nd post or use the link above to reminisce with me.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Mega Gussy Group Giveaway

The uber talented Gussy is doing another HUGE monthly sponsor giveaway and entry couldn't be easier...just leave a comment and say "Hello"! Check out all of her talented June sponsors HERE.

Of particular note, is my super sweet friend, Tracy, of Sweet Harper. She's offering up a Sassy Mama Flower Clip or Headband of your choice. Oohh, la, la, Mama! Be sure to stop by and check out her adorable line of sweet clips for kiddos as well. Did I mention that the lucky winner takes home ALL of the goodies? That's right...all 10 items just for stopping by to say "Hello". I've got my entry you?

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Summer Safety

As I watched my little guys enjoying a fun-filled day of Slip-N-Slide, sprinklers (yes, sprinklers plural...3 to be exact!), water table toys, and sand castle building, my mind couldn't help but wander to how important summer safety truly is. We love to spend big blocks of time outdoors come rain or shine, but it's particularly important during these hot, sunny days to take the right precautions to ensure a healthy dose of fun both now and for a lifetime.

The American Academy of Pediatrics has issued a Summer Safety Tip Sheet that I think is a must-read for anyone planning to spend time outdoors this season. They cover everything from general fun in the sun to heat stress in children. They also provide guidelines regarding safety during many common outdoor activities, including pool safety, playground safety, bicycle safety, skateboard/scooter/in-line skating/heelys safety, and lawn mower safety. Lastly, bug safety is addressed, including revised recommendations regarding the use of repellents containing DEET on children. Make sure you're in the know this summer to ensure safe and happy fun in the sun!

Monday, June 21, 2010

Balance Benders by The Critical Thinking Co.

My oldest son (6 yrs. old) loves mind benders and critical reasoning problems and games. Though usually practiced in the context of real world, 3-D applications, he also has an uncanny knack for figuring out 2-dimensional workbook-style challenges. He is thoughtful and deliberate in his work and likes to use multiple strategies to solve a given problem.

When I first learned of Balance Benders from The Critical Thinking Co., I thought it was something that he could really get into and something that would be a great adjunct activity to what he will be learning in school over the next few years. Although he attends school outside of the home (kindergarten last year and 1st grade next year), we have always added our own informal homeschooling activities with the kids from very early on. I strongly support functional learning in a hands-on, real-world setting; however, these particular puzzles pull on his fondness for math and logic problems and are useful in preparing him for some of the pen-and-paper expectations of traditional schooling.

We received Balance Benders Beginning Level: Logic and Algebraic Reasoning Puzzles to test and review. They are designed for Grades 2-6 (Jaden just completed kindergarten), but he did surprisingly well with the earlier puzzles in the book and I can definitely see us continuing to use this workbook in the future. The puzzles are designed around a balance scale and require the use of deductive reasoning, logic, and algebraic skills to correctly answer questions involving pictoral representations. The book includes 10 Balance Tips, as well as all solutions, including the mathematical principal that each problem addresses. These puzzles are meant to be fun, educational, and functional by preparing students for standardized tests with which they will eventually come in contact.

These workbooks can be purchased for only $9.99 per level and range from Beginner to Level 3. You can check out some other great learning puzzles from The Critical Thinking Company HERE. They also offers some great FREE printables for use with a variety of age ranges.

(Disclosure: I received a Balance Benders book, free of charge, from The Critical Thinking Co., for the purposes of this review. No monetary compensation was received in exchange for this review. All opinions are honest and based on my own experiences and those of my son.)

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Celebrate Dad!

Happy Father's Day

to my awesome Hubs and all of the other fabulous Daddy's out there who lead their families admirably with love, strength, and sensitivity...You Rock!

Friday, June 18, 2010

Friday Food For Thought

It's easy to get to the top,
after you get through the crowd at the bottom.

~ Zig Ziglar

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Whish Body Products - A Dreamy Review!

A bath & body goody addict to the core, I am pleased to introduce Whish Body Products. Founded in January of 2006 by brothers Jesse & Sam Werner, the idea behind Whish was initially to create a better shaving experience for women. Fast forward 4 years, and Whish boasts an impressive line of body treatments, including shaving cream, body wash, sugar scrub, body butter, hair inhibiting gel, and ingrown hair serum. They also carry a nice selection of body brushes for gentle exfoliation in the bath or shower.
I recently had the pleasure of testing their Pomegranate Three Wishes Sugar Scrub. Made from a combination of organic sugar cane, brown sugar, raspberry seeds, and bamboo powder, this yummy little scrub promises to renew and polish even the most sensitive skin gently and effectively, leaving skin glowing and smooth. I personally found this scrub to be a refreshing change from the run-of-the-mill, overly oily sugar scrubs currently on the market. Instead of using a mass of oils, the Three Wishes Scrub uses a base of organic beeswax, organic aloe, organic shea butter, and organic raspberry butter. The result is a whipped sugar scrub that leaves skin feeling polished and moisturized without a heavy, oily residue. I was pleasantly surprised to find that there was no oil slick left behind in my tub (yes, I was able to find the time to do my "research" by way of a relaxing bath vs. a quickie shower...big Thank You to hubs for that!) and my skin felt super soft, not greasy. I also love that this product is paraben, petrochemical, sulfate, DEA, and TEA-free...only natural and organic ingredients. Best of all, the entire line of Whish Body Products is made right here in the U.S.A.! The Whish line of Three Wishes Sugar Scrubs retails for $38 for 12 oz. of delicious product and reportedly lasts for about 60 days.

This is a MamaBuzz sponsored review. I was provided a 3.7 oz sample of the product to test and review for my awesome readers. All opinions expressed in this review are honest and present a true reflection of my experience with this product. No other form of compensation was received for my participation in this review.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Pampers Gifts to Grow Codes

Get in now on some great Gifts To Grow codes available for FREE, yes, FREE! Combine these babies with the codes found in your most recent boxes of Pampers to rack up some really nice numbers :)

25GTGSUMMER2010 (25 pts)


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

The Truth About The Food We Eat

When signing into my Yahoo Mail today, an interesting headline caught my eye..."The Truth About The Food You Eat". Always on the lookout for ways to improve my family's eating habits, I clicked over to take a peek. What I found was staggering! This is a definite must-read for anyone concerned about the quality of food they allow into their household. Check out the full story HERE (be sure to click on the links within the article for a bigger scare!). Can you say sand in Mexican Pizza?! Fortunately for us, most of the items referenced never enter our household, but it sure makes me question what unsavory ingredients might be lurking in some of the "convenience foods" we do keep on hand. A pretty faithful label reader before, this mama is surely about to kick it into overdrive!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Let the Celebration Continue!

Let the celebration continue! In honor of our 1 year Anniversary, we're offering FREE shipping on all ElliaCNaturals products now through Saturday (June 19th)! Enter shipping option BDAY at checkout to take advantage of this fabulous offer.

Promotion good on ElliaCNaturals products only. Valid for shipping within the continental U.S.

Friday, June 11, 2010

Friday Food For Thought

Learn from yesterday,
Live for today,
Hope for tomorrow.

~ Albert Eisnstein

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Bee-autiful Makeover!

I've been experimenting with some new techniques lately and having a blast! One of the fruits of my labor is a makeover of our goat milk and honey cold processed soap, formerly known as Sweet Milk & Honey. Our new reveal comes complete with a new name, Bee-autiful. What-cha think?

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Happy Birthday to Us!

It's hard to believe, but Ellia C. Naturals is 1 year old! Come celebrate our 1st Birthday by enjoying 20% off of your favorite Ellia C. Naturals products. No coupon required, simply shop our all natural goodies & enjoy instant savings!

Offer valid now through June 13th on all Ellia C. Naturals products excluding gift sets and custom orders.

Monday, June 7, 2010

How Does My Garden Grow?

Apparently with loads of weeds! Ugh...the one downside to this yummy labor of love. Ah well, here are a couple of snaps of our veggie and herb garden. We also planted some raspberry bushes, blueberries, broccoli, carrots, red potatoes, and collard greens that aren't pictured. Can't wait 'til harvest time!

Tomatoes, banana peppers, jalapenos, chili peppers, more tomatoes, strawberries, sweet peas, green beans, baby sweet watermelon, and cantaloupe.

Sweet basil, French lavender. rosemary, and German chamomile (just out of frame).

Peppermint, lemon balm, and spearmint.

Friday, June 4, 2010

And the Grill Daddy Goes To...

Congratulations to Our Family! Your comment "I have your button on my blog" (#17) was selected by as the winner. Get ready for some super summer BBQ-ing!!

Thank you to all who participated in this summer fun giveaway. Be on the lookout for another sweet contest soon!

Friday Food For Thought

Manners are a sensitive awareness
of the feelings of others.
If you have that awareness,
you have good manners,
no matter what fork you use.

~ Emily Post

McDonald's Pulls Toxin Tainted Shrek Glasses

U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission via AP

For those who frequent McDonald's, here is an important recall regarding their popular "Shrek: Forever After" drinking glasses. Tests revealing traces of cadmium (toxic) in the painted designs on these glasses has prompted a 12 million unit recall. The CPSC is urging customers to stop using them immediately. Read more about the recall and how to obtain a refund HERE.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Infant Sling Recall: Suffocation Risk

Attention all fellow baby-wearing Mamas...there is an important recall about which you need to be aware! An infant fatality has prompted the recall of 40+ ring-style slings made by Sprout Stuff of Austin, Texas due to a suffocation risk. Read more about it HERE. You should also be aware that in March of this year, the CPSC (U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission) issued a general warning about the use of all sling carriers for babies. Find out more HERE.

While the benefits of baby wearing are numerous, it's always important to put the safety of our little ones first. The first step in doing this is to stay informed and use good judgment. Happy Nurturing!

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Sun, Sand, & Icy Treats!

Today was the perfect (almost) summer day! Clear blue skies, mid-80s, and a refreshing breeze...can you say Heaven? We filled the sand box, broke out the water table, and took a long walk along the shoreline via the boardwalk. Then we took a break to enjoy some frozen treats. Here's my sweet Caleb crushin' a frozen yogurt tube with his Icy Pop Treat Cozy from Luna Lou. Thanks so much to Lizzie for these fabulous finger more frigid fingers and the kids love the fun, vibrant colors!! Handmade using eco-friendly felt, these babies stay dry and wick moisture away while looking oh so cool. And the best thing...they're reusable, so no need to wrap a paper towel around the bottom of your freeze pop (therefore, no more paper towel waste). We have Rocket Red, Royal Blue, Turquoise, and Tangerine...definitely a must have this summer!

Psssst...Did I mention that you get FREE shipping for up to 2 cozies per order?!

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