Wednesday, July 30, 2014

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Soup's on!

While I was away this weekend, my hubby went above and beyond the call of duty! Not only did he host a party for 3 of his buddies and all of their kids, he also made his first "intentional" gluten-free meal! Apparently, M had requested gluten-free soup! My hubby picked a new recipe, took both kids to the grocery store, assisted M in the cooking process and he was sweet enough to take pictures of the whole thing! 


He even set it all out and took a picture for me to share on the blog!

Monday, July 28, 2014

Cookbook Review: Gluten-Free with No Apologies

*Disclaimer: I was provided with a copy of the cookbook. I was in no way required to write a review. All opinions are my own.

One of my favorite finds at the GFAF Expo was this cookbook- written by a mother-daughter duo. As a "newbie" to the gluten-free cooking world, I have enjoyed searching through the pages and looking at all of the revamped southern standbys. I have tried a handful of recipes, but my favorite has to be their "Creamy Chicken Pot Pie" made with a from-scratch pie crust. The recipes are simple and easy to follow.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Meanwhile, Back at the Ranch...

For mother's day this year, my hubby and three of his buddies planned a girls only getaway for some super lucky mommas! While we were away for a whole two days, the menfolk tended to the kiddos. I thought it would be fun to share what was going on while the ladies made our great escape!


While we were off being baby-free, the guys held down the fort! On Saturday night when the ladies were enjoying a relaxing dinner out, my hubby invited the whole crew over to grill some burgers and let the kids play. Safety in numbers, right?




I can't even describe how great it was to take a breather from the kids, knowing that the daddies had it all under control. They updated us with cute videos and pictures of the action back at home the entire time we were away.



If you want to see what the girls were up to, take a peek at Lindsey's Girls Baby-Free Weekend post!



Where is your favorite kid-free vacation spot?

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Spotlight on Smart Kids 101: How to Help When Your Child Has Anxiety

A quick note from Carly:   I came across this article last week and I immediately knew that I wanted to share it with my readers. I feel that as adults, we tend to focus on OUR stressors and OUR anxiety issues. We forget that children are prime candidates for internalizing stress as well! 




Nearly every child deals with anxiety at some point in his or her little life. Whether it's worrying about the first day of school or a fear of the dark, childhood anxiety is quite common. That’s right -- it’s actually a normal part of child development. These fears help children sort out what is and isn’t a threat.

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Spotlight on Linda: An Update From Nonni



As one of M’s grandmothers, I’ve watched M go through the first three months of her gluten-free transition.  The first change that I noticed was that M started focusing her eyes briefly on the person addressing her.  Her smile became more frequent, and the pictures that you’ve been seeing on The Puzzled Palate are among the first where she looked directly at the camera.  I love the sparkle in those eyes!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Missing Miss M

This past weekend, M's Memaw took her to Myrtle Beach, SC! My mother-in-law has started taking her grand-babies on solo-vacations in order to spend one on one time with them. This year was M's turn and I missed her... I missed her a lot! It was good getting to hangout with just Peanut, but I felt like something was off all four days! When she came home, she was so excited to share all of her adventures. One of her favorites was going on the Sky Wheel- twice!! Don't worry about her lack of seat belt- it is fully enclosed.

Even if you can't see her face in it, I am still in love with this picture. 

Photo Credit: Memaw

To my mother-in-law...thanks for spoiling our girl! 
She had a blast and I can't wait to see where Peanut decides to go!


Have you ever been on a ferris wheel or sky wheel?

Monday, July 21, 2014

Top 10 Parenting Perks


I LOVE being a mommy- it is the most fulfilling job I could ever imagine! Don't get it twisted- there are plenty of days when I am ready to pull my hair out and run away screaming! When I have days like that, what keeps me sane are the parenting perks. Parenting perks are the little things that all add up and make my cup runneth over. Without further ado, here are my top ten parenting perks!

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Exploring the Great Smoky Mountains *Getaway Giveaway {$790+ Value}

When I was a kid, my parents would pack all the camping gear in our mini-van and we would head to the Great Smoky Mountains. Many of my fondest summer memories are of spending time with my family in Cades Cove, an isolated valley in the Great Smoky Mountains. This past weekend, my parents flipped through family photo albums and came up with these gems!



You don't have to be a camper to love the Great Smoky Mountains! Aside from the campgrounds, there are beautiful cabins and other lodging facilities. There are endless locations to explore! It really is a beautiful place to take your family. With that being said, I have very exciting news for you! I am co-hosting a giveaway for a Great Smoky Mountains Getaway!!

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 Are you looking to plan a beautiful vacation for your family? Bare Feet on the Dashboard is partnering with Hidden Mountain Resort, the Titanic Museum of Pigeon Forge and Dollywood to give one lucky reader a luxury getaway to the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee. This family giveaway is valued at over $790- no strings attached! The contest is free and simple to enter. If you are interested and want more details on the giveaway- just keep reading!

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The Great Smoky Mountains are the perfect place for a getaway. Enjoy the scenic beauty, while visiting America's most popular national park. You will have access to tons of restaurants and attractions in a family friendly atmosphere.

The family vacation package includes: 
*Two nights at a two bedroom cabin at Hidden Mountain Resort in Sevierville, TN ($500 value)
*Four tickets to Dollywood
*A family pass to the Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge.
(Transportation and meals are not included.)

  hiddenmountainporch 

  Hidden Mountain Resort has a community of luxury cabins and villas for visitors as well as a motor coach resort. The resort is on the side of a mountain with a secluded feel- but still close to all the action! The lakes and walking paths are perfect for a mountain stroll. The accommodations are fitting for any size group. You can read a full review of the cabin rentals at Hidden Mountain here.

  Dollywood1

Dollywood is a family friendly resort located in Pigeon Forge, Tennessee.  With world class rides and entertainment, it brings the best of the amusement park and country music worlds together to create a one of kind experience courtesy of the founder, Dolly Parton. Read our full review of Dollywood here. *My grandmother took us there when we were little. They have rides and attractions to keep the whole family entertained!

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 The Titanic Museum in Pigeon Forge is a celebration of the lives of the passengers of the Titanic. The museum offers a hands on experience for visitors- feel what it would have been like to step onto the beautiful ship!  You can walk down the grand staircase while learning about life on board as you walk through the 20 galleries of the museum. The interactive exhibits make this museum a great family friendly stop.

 Are you ready to win your own Smoky Mountain Getaway?

You don't need a blog or Facebook account to enter, just an email address. 
 Simply, use the Rafflecopter form below to enter. 



  This giveaway is open worldwide. Bare Feet on the Dashboard and all participating bloggers are not responsible for prize fulfillment. One email address per household, please. All entries will be checked. Winner will receive a two night stay in a two bedroom cabin of their choice based on availability with a maximum credit of $500. Holidays, holiday weekends, July, and October are excluded. Transportation and meals not included. Winner will also receive a family pass to the Titanic Museum and a family four pack of tickets to Dollywood. Prizes are non transferrable.

The Best of Luck!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Guest post from... me?!?

For today's throwback, I am linking up to... myself? Yep, you heard it right! Many moons ago, I started a blog that lasted for a whole 10 posts! I came across it recently and thought it would be fun to share. With the exception of adding watermarks, I chose to leave the post exactly as written. I tried my best to salvage the low pixel photos, but there is only so much I can do- we did not have the "fancy cameras" yet. I hope you enjoy the quick look back!


Mommy & M's Mountain "get away"                TuesDAY, september 8, 2009



Tuesday, July 15, 2014

(Almost) Wordless Wednesday: Sisterhood of the Traveling Dress

This past week, M tried on a hand-me-down dress for my friend's upcoming wedding. This dress is NOT just any hand-me-down. I fell in love with this dress when I was searching out the perfect flower girl dresses for my nieces to wear six years ago. 

Me with my beautiful flower girls- August 2008.

As I am sure you can imagine, M would not take this dress off. She went off to accessorize with a crown and her special shoes. She then proceeded to wear it around the house all day. She kept trying to catch a glimpse of herself in the mirror and would twirl around the living room- so precious!

High tops are the new glass slippers, right?

When in a princess dress, one MUST curtsy!

Look at those beautiful eyes! This picture takes my breath away!

 I love that she loves this dress as much as I do and I can't wait for her to show it off at the wedding!


Please leave a comment and tell me that I am not the only sentimental fool out there! 

Monday, July 14, 2014

Traveling with Food Allergies: Tips and Resources for eating safe on the road


Plan ahead! Unfortunately, flying by the seat of your pants is not something you can do. Go ahead and plan out what and where you are going to eat. Feel free to be spontaneous- just have a back up plan that is safe for you.

Grab the Find Me GF app! This free app allows you to search restaurants near your location to find GF options. I suggest calling ahead to confirm that they have menu items that fit your diet. Also, be sure to ask about their cross-contamination protocol.

Grab the Allergy Eats app! This free app allows you to search restaurants that cater to various food allergies! You can search establishments that have options without peanuts, tree nuts, dairy, eggs, shellfish, fish, soy, gluten, wheat or sesame.

Over pack snacks! Before you hit the road, load a cooler with drinks, water, fruit and cheese sticks- unless you're allergic to them! Also, bring snacks that don't require refrigeration such as fruit cups, single serving applesauces or a custom made trail mix.

Reserve a room with a kitchenette! The best way to eat safe is to cook your own food. It sucks to cook on vacation, but it is not as bad as getting sick on your vacation! Plan easy meals that require little prep and clean up. Make and take a lunch with you. (This tip is also a money saver)

Look into Allermates bands for your kiddos! They have a selection of fun wrist bands for your little ones to alert others about food allergies or medical conditions.

Bring your card! Print out this free chef card to alert the servers and kitchen staff of your dietary limitations.

Check with the airline! If you are flying, pack your own in flight snacks. Be sure to check TSA guidelines for what you need to avoid bringing. When booking your flight, follow these important steps if you have a contact allergy.

Be prepared for the worst! If you have a life threatening allergy to certain foods, you should be sure to bring your EpiPen and know where the closest medical facility is. Print and fill out this Emergency Care form! If your reaction is to gluten- check out these steps from MindBodyGreen.com to decrease the discomfort!

If you want to see all of these pointers in one place- check out our TRAVEL TIPS Pinterest Board!


Happy trails to you!



Are you planning a trip soon?




Sunday, July 13, 2014

Choosing Safe Sun Protection {Bare Belly Organics *Coupon}


You are probably used to coming to our site to learn about what you are putting IN your body. Today, I want to talk about how important it is to know what you are putting ON your body. If you haven't heard already, the FDA recently suggested discontinuing use of spray-on sunscreens. If you are not sure what to use now that the spray-on option is out, I would like to offer a few pointers and maybe even a coupon!

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Wheat Wars: The Great Grain Debate

Artwork by Walt Kelly

*This post is a light-hearted commentary on the recent attention on the gluten-free lifestyle. *

I have been thinking about it and I have come up with six different types of people. These are not official titles, I just like them...so just go with it! The six types are: "Celiacs aka Gluten-Intolerants," "Gluten-Sensitives," "GF Dieters," "GF Supporters," "Innocent Bystanders," and "GF Conspiracy Theorists."
I have met all of these people while on our GF journey. Of course, there will always be some gray area between groups- but for the most part, people will fall into one of these. Check out our fancy-pants flow chart and find out where you stand!

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Throwback Thursday: The Brotherly Love Edition

If you are a regular reader, you know that I am a huge fan of recreating photos. This past week, my hubby had all of his brothers together for this first time in over 2 years...you know I had to grab my camera and do a few throwback shots! They are not spot on, but the fact that I could convince four grown men to pose like their kiddo-counter parts was hilarious! Whether you know them or not, I am sure that you will enjoy a few flashbacks.

My hubby is on the far left with his brothers at USMC Bootcamp graduations.

All the girls in the house were cracking up at this re-do!

My mother in law insisted that we recreate on of her favorites. We did not have a reference pic- close right?

My hubby's whole family together- amazing how fast it all goes!

Check out more side by side throwbacks in our Savannah TBT and Cousin TBT.


Have you ever tried to recreate an old family photo?

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

"Let Freedom Ring Parade" Recap (Marietta, GA)

This Independence Day, we took the family to the annual "Let Freedom Ring Parade" in Marietta, Georgia. Since we were at the beginning of the route, the parade started at 10 AM and lasted for a full hour! It was interesting to see so many organizations coming out to celebrate our freedom and to honor those who make it possible.

How to personalize your accessories on a budget *Giveaway

I am a sucker for anything personalized and M is a huge fan of accessorizing! We have had the pleasure of trying out a lot of fun goodies during our blogging experience, but nothing tops these two product lines! Cammy with Jamberry Nails and Rosie's Pendants sent M accessories personalized for her journey with high functioning autism. Both the nail wraps and the pendants are available for purchase as featured or as one of many other designs- promised to fit your style!


Both the Jamberry nail wraps and Rosie's Pendants are more than reasonably priced. I can also personally vouch for their quality and durability. If you aren't looking to add to your accessory options, keep them in mind for gift giving occasions! Nothing better than getting a gift that is hand selected or custom made!


First up, Jamberry Nails from Independent Consultant Cammy Wyatt! I had heard of Jamberry's nail wraps before and honestly did not think that they would be a good fit for me. I am excited to tell you that I was wrong! I thought that they would be difficult to apply and fall off when I washed my hands- also wrong! Each nail wrap takes a few seconds to apply and they can last for weeks!

Gather your "tools", cut the decal to size, warm with the hair dryer, smooth onto nail & file any excess!

M is not a fan of the hair dryer, so my niece willingly volunteered to get "fancy nails."


If you would like to take a peek at the other 300+ nail wrap designs- hop over to Cammy's Jamberry Page.




Next up, Rosie's Pendants! From the moment that I came across this Etsy shop, I have been obsessed! Rosie's offers beautifully handcrafted pendants. They are 100% customizable! The pendants come either as a keychain or as a necklace. When you are creating your custom pendant, you can choose from Rosie's huge collection of designs or if nothing fits your fancy you can send in your own quote. I am telling you, the choices are endless! 

This is the beautiful pendant that they sent us.

I am already looking forward to ordering my next pendant from Rosie's! These are the top two contenders:


OR


I can't decide yet- but when I do, I will be taking advantage of this sweet deal!

Visit Rosie's Pendants' Etsy Shop and look through over 700+ products!

Now it is your turn to choose! 
Visit Cammy's Jamberry Site and Rosie's Pendants' Etsy Shop and pick your favorites! 
These two awesome companies are offering a "pick your prize" for a giveaway!


Good Luck!

Disclaimer:
I was provided with products for the purpose of this review. 
No compensation was given for this post. All opinions are my own.
Cammy Wyatt is an Independant Consultant for Jamberry Nails