Category: Family

You Need These Top 10 Finds from #ShiftCon

The following post contains affiliate links. All opinions are my own.

In December, I went to my first blogging conference. I wasn’t sure what to expect or how I was going to navigate it. Really, I was scared of the commitment and whether I was going to take this blogging thing seriously. I volunteered for Shiftcon early on 2016 to make sure I couldn’t find a reason not to go.

Top 10 Finds from Shiftcon

ShiftCon is an eco-wellness influencer conference focusing on food, wellness, health, sustainability, and platform growth. If you didn’t know, I started blogging because I was a Beachbody rep. Now, several years later, I’m no longer a rep, but I’m still blogging. So I thought ShiftCon would be a great fit for me. I’ll go over all of the reasons why I loved ShiftCon tomorrow, but today, I’m going to tell you about all of the wonderful goodies I received as an attendee.

10. Chili Lime Cherries by Stoneridge Orchards

Top 10 Finds at ShiftCon | AprilNoelle.com A deliciously sweet, tart and spicy snack, the best things in life. These no fat, all-natural Montmorency Cherries are seasons with Tajin, which is just divine to suit a variety of taste buds.

9. Hemp Heart Bites by Manitoba Harvest

I’ll be honest, I was skeptical. The squares looked dry. But once I tasted them, I had to double check the serving size to make sure I didn’t eat the whole bag in one sitting. With 10 grams of Omega 3&6 and 10 grams of protein per serving, These satisfy my sweet tooth AND my daily protein requirement.

8. Goddess Garden Sunscreen Stick

At #ShiftCon we learned so much about the benefits of utilizing sunscreen, including how increasing the SPF doesn’t necessarily mean better for you. The added protection (and often the white residue) is because of unnecessary and unnatural additives. That’s not what I want, especially since I live in a state where the sun shines most of the time.

7. Monkfruit Sweetener by Lakanto

The sweetener wars are intense, but I have found one that tops all others. Monkfruit Sweetener is a little sweeter than sugar, but has ZERO additives, ZERO Glycemic value, ZERO aftertaste and is a 1:1 sugar replacement. Use in place of sugar everywhere without spiking your insulin.

6. Molly’s Suds Laundry Powder

Molly’s mom, the owner of Molly’s Suds, and I had a great conversation which quickly drifted into fabric softener. I stopped using fabric softener

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A Glimpse of Hidden Figures

The commercials have been all over the place and I can hardly turn on the television without seeing an ad for this film:

Hidden Figures

I have to admit, I knew little about this story, or should I say stories.

These three women were an integral part of history.

The Women

Hidden Figures | AprilNoelle.comKatherine Johnson – the brains behind getting many men into space, including the flight of the first man in space, John Glenn. Glenn’s confidence in her mathematical ability forced NASA to request Katherine’s verification of the trajectory before his launch.

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Our Lost Ones

2016 ended with a bang ~ and not a good one.

This world lost a host of widely known celebrities that have shaped our lives –

  • Carrie Fisher, a champion for female empowerment
  • George Michael and Prince shaping many memories
  • Big Ang, who brought us some great entertainment on Mob Wives

just to name a few off the top of my head. But so many more recognizable people died as well.

Our Lost Ones | AprilNoelle.comThat doesn’t include the people who passed who touched us personally. Just in the last week, I’ve had a friend lose her brother and my “Big Sis” died.

Lori Anne was a mentor, a confident, a leader. As sad as I am that I’ve lost her, I can’t help but think about how many lives she touched.

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All New Amazon #PrimePhotos Features! {+Win a $500GC} #Ad

Amazon.com is providing the gift card prizes. Please read on for giveaway details.

I would have to say that I was hesitant to get Amazon Prime, so less than a year ago, I sent out a Facebook question:

Responses to this post really got me thinking and I joined shortly after.

Amazon Prime Photos

At the time, I was not aware of the awesome Prime Photos aspect, but believe me, I have been wildly impressed.  Amazon has taken the time to code Prime Photos to tag them, which means that I have been able to find a photo super quickly. After I logged in my family, I was able to quickly find old photos in mere seconds, as opposed to combing through thousands of photos.

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Filling My Heart with the Gift of Christmas Dinner

This morning, I spent several hours with one of my favorite non-profit organizations, National Coalition of 100 Black Women – West Palm Beach Chapter. We celebrated our annual gift of Christmas dinner, where we, as members, pour into three families and give them a prepared meal, followed by gifts for the whole family.

The Gift of Christmas Dinner

We chose the families in a couple of ways: collaborating with other organizations that aid single mothers or personal recommendations from members. This year, we opted to have the members make suggestions for the recipients.

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Put Your Child in the Story {Personalized Story Books}

This review has been compensated by Put Me in the Story.

Honestly, I am loving this new trend of getting personalized story books. I was able to personalize a lot of things as a child because April is so common and, well, it’s on the calendar. However, my siblings aren’t so “lucky”. They have beautiful names, but I could never find something personalized for them. Now, Put Me in the Story not only personalizes the book, it actually puts your child in the story!

Put Me in the Story | Personalized Story Books | AprilNoelle.com

Finding the Right Book for Each Daughter

Both of my daughters have very different personalities. Bee is kind and thoughtful, but often headstrong and persistent. Butterfly, on the other hand, loves to play princess and acts her role in the family – the baby. 

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Thanksgiving Stay at the Hyatt House Atlanta/Downtown

Thanksgiving Stay at Hyatt House Atlanta/Downtown | AprilNoelle.comFor Thanksgiving, my husband and I took the kids to Atlanta for a wonderful family dinner. Primarily we make the trip because my husband’s family gets together there and it’s a full-on family atmosphere from young to the old. What’s a little different is that I also invite my family to come so that we can all be one location and several family members already live in Atlanta.

That said, no one has the space to accommodate our large family, more specifically 3 not-so-quiet children. That’s ok because I don’t have to spend the entire time trying to apologize for my children’s behavior or trying to stop them from being themselves. So, this year we chose to stay at the Hyatt House Atlanta/Downtown.

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Be Stubborn in Your Vision {by Becoming an Uber Driver}

Now that my children go to their independent school, our household budget has changed immensely. Before, my husband’s income was adequate to support our simple household. But now, we need to be able to finance sending three children to non-public education.

As early as last year, I’ve started working on my own ventures. So far, they have not yielded any real results. Late summer, I found an enterprise that I can see will give tangible results in the near future. However, the near future is not now. Building a business is still a process and working with a partner often leads to managing two people’s expectations: yours and the other person’s. 

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One Small Action to Support a Great Film

Early this summer, Jeff, my husband, and I met this couple: John and Jackie*. They are an older couple and we have learned to look up to them in a lot of ways.

We were making dinner plans one day and we had an interaction that went something like this:

John*: Are you going to see “Southside with You”? Jackie and I are going to see it on Friday night. We’d love for you to join us.

Me:  I doubt it.

John: Really? Why not?

Me: It’s hard to get discount tickets for new releases. (Yes, I’m that frugal.)

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Easy Beef Macaroni Recipe

I love my Costco. I go to Costco religiously. On payday, I head over and fill up my cart with goodies, which for the most part, is standard, with minimal changes.

On that list is ground beef. We purchase the three pack of Kirkland Organic Ground Beef almost every trip.

The problem, however, is figuring out to do with it. A juicy hamburger is always a hit. Spaghetti is another. Honestly, that’s where my go-to recipes end.

I’ve tried hundreds of several options, none of these to my husband’s liking. Until this one.

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3 Style Tips for Simply Pretty Little Girl’s Hair #justformejustforschool #ad

**These tips provided to you by Just for Me. All opinions are my own.**

Most women dream of having little girls. I didn’t.

One of the reasons that I wasn’t excited was the thought of doing three heads of hair on the regular basis. I barely like doing my own, add to it the fussiness of little girls and the critique of other mothers, I was not up for the challenge.

But alas, here I was with two daughters and tons of hair! In my quest to have more beautiful hair myself, I also have to make sure that my girls look good too! School has upped my hair game. Now, I do their hair more than once a week.

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The Little Girl Who Lost Her Name | Personalized Books For the Child in Your Life

My little girls are readers – both of them.

Every night, I have each of them choose a book to read (unless someone chooses a ridiculously long book, then negotiations are in order).

Finding a Personalized Gift

As many books as we read, we rarely come across books with my daughter’s name. It’s unique, as it is a derivative of a very common name. On this site, I call her Bee because she is the Queen Bee of this household.

When I received the opportunity to take a look at a super special book where my little girl could “find her name”, I was enthusiastic to stay the least.

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