Thursday, February 22, 2007

Help the Rader Family

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Mom Squad member Julie Rader and her family (with Len and Brooke).

Six year old Natasha is battling a rare and serious form of cancer that has returned after a liver transplant and her father, who also has the same disease is awaiting a liver transplant himself.

You can help this family by making a contribution through the Children's Organ Transplant Association (COTA): HELP NATASHA

For more information contact Jenna Peyton, COTA coordinator for Natasha at 216-650-0082.

**Listen Friday morning (2/23) for a unique way you can contribute and help the family**

Recipe of the Week

Yogurt Pie

2 6oz containers of your favorite yogurt
1 box Jello
1 container of Whipped Topping
1 graham cracker crust
1/2 c. Boiling water


Dissolve Jello in boiling water. Add yogurt and mix well. Stir whipped topping into mixture until smooth. Pour into pie crust and chill.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Operation Organization

Mom Squad member Angela's mission: To de-clutter, clean, and organize listener Jackie's home. Jackie and her family have a full house; she works 2 jobs, they have several pets, and she's expecting her fourth child! Safe to say she could use a helping hand. Angela packed her tools (i.e. storage boxes and cleaning supplies) and went to work! Check out the results....



Angela is starting her own personal organization business and you can check it out at: www.totallyorganizedltd.com. Way to go Angela!

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Super Moon Sand!

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This is a great gift idea for kids 3-8. My son received this for his birthday and at first I was apprehensive (anything with SAND in the title makes me cringe when it's an inside toy). We opened it in the basement playroom just to be safe, but it turns out it was virtually mess-free! Moon sand is very inventive and clearly had parents in mind because it comes with a carrying case to keep it contained, organized, and clean. On the messiness scale I would say it's about the same level as plah-doh but definitely manageable! If you are looking for a creative gift for a kid, I think Moon Sand is out of this world!

Friday, February 16, 2007

Recipe of the Week

In my house, cooking is all about having little to clean up, so here is one of my favorite make and take desserts of having company over desserts because it is so easy and very little prep time or mess.

Chocolate Chip Cheesecake Bars

2 Rolls Pillsbury Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough
2 Eggs
1 Cup Sugar
2 Teaspoons Vanilla
2 Packages 8 oz. Cream Cheese - softened.

Grease 9 X 13 baking pan. Press 1 roll of cookie dough on bottom of baking pan.

Mix together eggs, sugar, vanilla and cream cheese with electric mixer until creamy and smooth. Pour over cookie dough.

Pat pieces of second cookie dough roll on top of cream cheese mixture.

Bake at 350 for 35 to 40 minutes. Cut when cool.

-Noelle from Garfield Hts



Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Vitamix Review!

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The great people at locally-owned Vitamix recently invited the Mom Squad to come in and test their product. Mom Squad member Tiffany was happy to oblige! This was her experience:



Many times I have hear Mark Rein talk about Vitamix and wondered what is this Vitamix? Is it a machine? Is it Vitamins? Is it health food? Even after all those times I've heard Mark I still had no clue what it was nor did I really have the desire to find out what it was. After touring the plant I learned a lot and considered purchasing this unique little machine. Yes!!!!! That's what it is, a machine like a blender but much better than your average household blender. I was really impressed by the things it could do but, it was going to be a bit of investment that I just can't pull off right now. This is what I learned:

Vitamix is a local manufacturer right here in Cleveland, OH. They make all there products right here in our backyard. Some of the places that Vitamix is a commercial distributor for are McDonald's (YES!!! Mc Donald's they make those really cool McFlurry machines) another is Baskin Robins and there were so many more I just can't remember them all.

The Vitamix household blender cost $399.00 with a 7 year warranty which I think is a bit steep but, for all 95.5 FISH listeners you can get a refurbished one for $199.00 with a 1 year warranty. The only catch is you must pick it up they do not ship these out. The refurbished products are all tested and brought up to Vitamix standards. I really think that this is a great deal simply because I truly believe Vitamix will only sell something that is in excellent condition.

After our tour we got to go to the kitchen and test the Vitamix. This was too cool. We had a smoothie to start it had bananas, oranges, apples, and pineapple which were then chopped up with low fat milk and it was so yummy. It was nice and chilled and a great summer drink. The next thing we had was my favorite it was baked potato soup. Please forgive me I can't remember what all was put in every recipe but, I can give you the basics she put a hot baked potato with bacon bits, onion, milk and she ground it all up and the heat from the machine actually warmed up the potato soup it was perfect no need to heat after it was created in the Vitamix and it took all of about 5 minutes to make. She made strawberry ice cream which was sooooo good it was so good in fact Joan one of the other mom's from the mom squad loved it and she is not a big strawberry fan. The ice cream was made with frozen strawberries and that Vitamix chopped them up with absolutely no problem. When it was done it was almost like a soft serve ice cream. A few other things that she made was peanut butter and salsa which were both very good. To get the recipes you can go to
http://www.vitamix.com/foodservice/recipes/mix_in.asp their recipes are absolutely fabulous.

I give the Vitamix a thumbs up except for the cost which I do think its worth it but, I don't use a blender often enough to justify the cost. But, I can say this if I was a new mom I think I might have invested in this because you can make your own baby food with it and I think that would have definitely justify the cost. I have also include the price sheet and if you have any questions from the history, recipes to what else Vitamix offers please visit their website at www.vitamix.com

Tiffany

Tummy Tuck Jeans Test

It's product-test time! Thanks to the great people at "Not Your Daughter's Jeans" who gave us their popular Tummy Tuck Jeans to try. The claim: flatten your tummy, lift your rear, and make you one size smaller!! What women wouldn't love that?! We called on Mom Squad panel members Angela, Noelle, and Beth to put them to the test.
Here is the BEFORE:
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AFTER (wearing the Tummy Tuck Jeans)
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Result: 3 thumbs down! While the jeans got high marks in "sucking in" the ladies said the style left a bit to be desired. The high-waist look was undesirable to all 3 moms and in the end they all said it was not something they would spend $100 on.

Special Note: Thanks again to the company Not Your Daughter's jeans for allowing us to test their product and give an honest review. It is important to note that different styles and colors are available at the website! You can find out more at www.tummytuckjeans.com

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Cupid's Coupons

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Each Valentine's Day I hide 10 "Cupid's Coupons" in my boy's bedrooms. The coupons can be handwritten on index cards or typed up on the computer. Whatever you want. The boys can't wait to find their coupons which say things like "Pop for dinner" or "Extra story at bedtime". Other favorites are "No veggies at dinner" or "Stay up an extra 10 minutes." The coupons are fast, fun, easy, and FREE!
Barb McLaughlin

Calling all MOPS!

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If you haven't already, check out the wonderful world of MOPS (Moms of Preschoolers).

www.mops.org

Sure to Please!

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Dreamy Yogurt Parfait
1 small package of strawberry jello
2 6oz strawberry yogurt (yoplait original)
3/4 cup cool whip
3 cups of fresh mixed berries (raspberries, blueberry, blackberries) whatever is on sale is fine
6 oreos

Mix dry jello with yogurt until well blended. Stir in cool whip. Layer yogurt, berries, cookies.

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Thursday, February 01, 2007

Recipe of the Week

Raspberry Custard Croissants
Ingredients: 1/4 cup Raspberry jam (seedless), 4 oz. cream cheese, 1/2 cup of powdered sugar,
15 croissants (or whatever you can fit in a 9 x 13 inch pan), 2 containers of fresh raspberries or 1 bag of frozen raspberries.

Preheat oven at 375 degrees. Butter the baking dish. Mix together jam, cream cheese, and powdered sugar. Set aside. Slice croissants down the middle and then cut in half. Place 1 Tbsp of jam mixture in each croissant. Add 4 raspberries on top of jam mixture and close croissant. Put jam-filled croissants in the baking dish.

Custard Ingredients: 6 large eggs, 1/2 cup sugar, 1 cup heavy whipping cream, 1 cup milk (1%),
1 tsp vanilla extract, 4 Tbsp melted butter.
Mix together custard ingredients. Pour custard over croissants. Cover with foil. Bake covered for 35-40 minutes or until egg is set. Take it out of oven, remove foil.

Glaze Ingredients: 1 Tbsp milk, 1/2 cup powdered sugar, 2 Tbsp melted butter, 1 or 2 Tbsp Rasperry jam.
In a small bowl, mix glaze ingredients. brush the top of the croissants with the glze. return dish to oven, uncovered. Broil it until brown and bubbly. Take it out. Enjoy!

All the ingredients needed to make the Raspberry Custard Croisssant:
Raspberry jam, cream cheese, powdered sugar, croissants, eggs, sugar, heavy whipping cream, vanilla extract, fresh or frozen raspberries, and butter.

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From Angela in Painesville

Welcome February Mom Squad Panel!

Angela, Beth, Noelle, and Julie are the new panel! We have an exciting month planned. We are going to test the Tummy Tuck Jeans (from "Not Your Daughter's Jeans"), help with home organization, offer new recipes and much more! Stay tuned....