Cloud Star Soft & Chewy Buddy Biscuits


Maddie absolutely loves Soft & Chewy Buddy Biscuits that Cloud Star makes! They’re free of grains, preservatives, artificial colors, and artificial flavors, so that makes me love them too.

Since they’re so soft, it’s easy for her to eat them, and easy for me to break them up into smaller pieces to make them last longer for training practice. The re-sealable bag they come in helps them stay fresh, and helps seal in the smell (which is absolutely a bonus since whenever Maddie smells them she goes crazy!) I think the rotisserie chicken flavor is her favorite.

If you have a dog you should absolutely get these treats for them!


Paleo Friendly Tortilla Alternative

20130202_151309 (1)Pure Wraps are a great alternative for those, like me (Samantha), who are following a Paleo or low carb diet. They’re made entirely from chemical/pesticide-free coconut, and are an alkaline and raw food.

I love using them with dinner leftovers like stir fry (any meat/veggie combo). It’s like a new meal  with leftovers! They do have a little bit of a sweet taste and do better with  less moisture in them, so not too drippy and messy to eat. I haven’t seen them in stores, but ordered mine here.

Passage Foods Sauces – 2 Thumbs UP!

4556I received a package of sauces from Passage Foods to taste and review. They manufacturer international cooking sauces and aim to let people indulge in exotic flavors and aromas at home. All their  products are gluten free, and provide a healthy solution for people with busy schedules. Each package contains the premixed sauce and instructions (type of meat/veggies) to make a recipe.

My absolute favorite has to be the Thai Basil and Sweet Chili sauce! I was definitely surprised at how fresh the basil tasted, and loved the slight kick of the chili at the end. Each of the other sauces I tried were rated ‘mild’ and had more of a sweet note at the end. There is a good variety of flavor options and spice levels for everyone in a household. Though I followed the recipes on the back of the package the first time I made them, I was getting ideas as I ate my dinners for other delicious dishes to incorporate the sauces in.

I HIGHLY recommend these sauces to anyone looking for a healthy alternative to quick meals. So many of us are super busy and rushed and find it hard to find time to prepare a restaurant-tasting meal.  I could eat them daily over all different types of things, and they’re even great with just vegetables for vegetarians. These were very easy to prepare and tasted amazing, not to mention making my apartment smell delicious as well. I am looking forward to trying additional flavors!

Where to buy Passage Foods Products

Why Grass-fed Beef is so Much Better

Aside from posing the danger of E. coli, corn-fed beef contains far fewer nutrients than grass-fed beef. Prevention reports that a recent study by the USDA and researchers from Clemson University found grass-fed beef to be significantly higher in calcium, magnesium, beta-carotene, and potassium than corn-fed beef. In addition:

  • Meat from grass-fed cattle is lower in both overall fat and artery-clogging saturated fat.
  • Grass-fed meat is higher in healthy omega-3 fats. Meat from feedlot animals has been found to contain only 15-50 percent as much omega-3s as meat from grass-fed cattle.
  • Meat from grass-fed livestock is four times higher in vitamin E.
  • Grass-fed meat is higher in conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a nutrient associated with lower cancer risk.

For the rest of the article:

A Hairdryer That Works Well and is Cheap!

Anyone who knows me knows that I am ALWAYS looking for products and tips to help with my hair. I spend an embarrassing amount of time researching,  reading reviews, and buying/returning things that don’t work as promised. Recently, I found this hairdryer that works great and is cheap! It’s made by Revlon, style # RV544. I like it for the following reasons:

1) Lightweight

2) Powerful – 1875 watts

3) Ceramic/Tourmaline technology – gentler on your hair

4) Dries it fast

5) Hot/warm and High/low settings (cool shot too)

6) Comes with  anti-frizz nozzle & diffuser

7) $19.99 most places, including Amazon

Flavored Stevia Drops – my latest obsession!

You know the expression about the next best thing since sliced bread . . . well SweetLeaf Stevia® Sweetener could be it! Stevia is a plant which is very sweet and can easily replace sugar or honey that spike your insulin levels which wreaks havock with your hormones, and feed bacteria, viruses and disease. It can also easily replace artificial sweeteners that have been linked to causing disease and weight gain.  SweetLeaf claims it’s the only 100% natural stevia sweetener with zero calories, zero carbohydrates and zero glycemic index on the market today, and contains no chemicals or artificial ingredients to interfere with its pure, sweet taste. It’s processed using only cool, purified water and the nice woman I spoke with in their customer service department assured me that they do not contain any GMOs. Other stevia sweeteners may use chemicals, solvents or alcohols (such as methanol and ethanol) in their extraction process, leaving residue requiring masking agents or flavoring compounds to disguise them. This can result in a harsh aftertaste.

And speaking of taste, they make liquid drops that come in a variety of flavors. I have personally tried several and just ordered 3 more. I use the vanilla one all the time instead of vanilla extract and the English toffee and chocolate raspberry in plain yogurt (less sugar), protein shakes, oatmeal, and baking. I just ordered the lemon, root beer and grape to mix with plain, and cheap soda water for flavored soda with no sugar. It also comes in unflavored for use in sweet tea, hot coffee, and other things when you just want a bit of sweetness.

A little bottle is about $12, but don’t be fooled into thinking it’s expensive. You only need a tiny amount and there’s like 800 servings per bottle! If kept refrigerated, it lasts a couple of years. This post was inspired by my friend Ken, who will hopefully be saying  goodbye to sugar real soon!