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Saturday, October 30, 2010

Housekeeping: Cookies, a Review, and a Giveaway!

If your Saturdays are anything like ours, they're a day for catching up, for housekeeping, for doing all those things we've meant to do all week but never got around to. This is one of the only Saturdays I've been home this month, and I plan to take full advantage! Mopping floors isn't fun, but they're disastrous!

So while I'm doing some housekeeping in my house today, I also have a few "housekeeping" issues to cover on the blog. Fun ones, I promise!

1. Let's cut right to the chase and talk about this giveaway, huh? A few weeks ago I mentioned a CSN giveaway that I'd be hosting on this blog. CSN is a mecca of (200+) online stores where you can literally purchase anything from upholstered headboards to diaper bags to kitchen stuff. I was given the chance to try out some products and since I'm not in the market for bed pieces OR diaper bags, I opted for some adorable Rachel Ray serving bowls, as seen below in my picture of the butternut squash ice cream, as well as a sieve, which I also needed to make my ice cream! Both products arrived within a few days of ordering them and I've been nothing but happy with them! The bowls are adorable and perfect for serving things like soup or ice cream. I can't wait to make mini pot pies in them!

CSN didn't just give me some products to try out, they're also offering one of my readers a $45 gift certificate to spend at any of their 200+ stores! Believe me, you'll have no problem finding something you want on their site! To enter for your chance to win this gift certificate, leave a comment telling me your favorite way to spend a Saturday. For a second entry, tweet about this giveaway and leave me another comment saying you did so.

I'll accept comments until Tuesday night at 9:00 pm Central and announce the (randomly picked) winner on Wednesday morning. This giveaway is only open to those in the United Stated and Canada, as CSN doesn't ship internationally. Good luck!

2. Tomorrow's Halloween and I've seen tons of adorably festive treats on the internet. Unfortunately, I didn't have time to make too many Halloween-inspired treats last week (though I've kept you full of pumpkin stuff, huh?), but I did manage to whip up some cute sugar cookies!

Thanks to my mom for giving me the adorable cookie cutters, to Ryan for running out to the store last minute for me, and to Paige for being my co-decorator! Need a last minute treat for a party tonight? Or maybe something to do so that you can keep your hands out of the candy bucket? Whip up a batch of this cookie dough, grab some Fall-ish cookie cutters, and enjoy! They're still my favorite sugar cookies (maybe overall cookies?) ever!

3. Because I'm a Foodbuzz Featured Publisher and part of their Tastemaker program, I occasionally get sent products to try (like when I got to sample this chocolate!). This time, I was sent two loaves of Nature's Pride Bread: Oatmeal and Whole Wheat. I'm typically not picky when it comes to bread (although I love the homemade stuff), but this stuff was extra good. It's soft and chewy, but holds up well to various sandwich fillings, such as the excellent creation you see below: turkey, cranberry sauce, and goat cheese (we may or may not have Thanksgiving on the brain!). We still have about half of each loaf left and I can't wait to use it for other sandwiches.

Need sandwich ideas? How about a peanut butter panini? Or a jam & proscuitto panini? Chinese chicken salad would also be awesome on this bread! Thank you Foodbuzz & Nature's Pride, we're loving the bread!

....and I think that's enough housekeeping for today! Enjoy your weekend :)