Queen of Herbs – Organic India Tulsi Tea review (and coupon code)

My favorite thing about trying new products is filling my brain with new information. It’s one thing to try a new type of yogurt or a sample cookie mixes.. it’s another when there is an actual learning moment. This is the second time I was lucky enough to sample Organic India Tulsi teas via Green Moms Meet. Last time I learned all about the health benefits of Moringa and made some awesome Moringa coconut pineapple n’ice cream. This time I got to enjoy their line of teas. For a tea drinker like myself.. opening my sample box from Organic India was a gift in itself. Warm and fragrant, notes of rose, peppermint, utter sweetness. Organic India produces over twenty different types of organic tea as well as supplements.

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What is Tulsi?Tulsi – named after the Goddess Tulsi and known as Holy Basil – is a herb native to India. Tulsi has firm roots in Hindu culture and the Tulsi plant is common in everyday life. The Tulsi plant can be harvested for its tea leaves, used for creating essential oils, and the wood used to create beads. Holy Basil is considered an herbal supplement and has many healing properties – high in antioxidants (protects against cell damage& free radicals), stress relief, immune support as well as positive impacts on your metabolism, mood & energy levels. In my research I also learned that Tulsi tea and oils can be used as a remedy for cold sores and bronchial ailments.

Tulsi Tea

I’m neurotic about cold brew tea and coffee. The process is easier and for me I think you get a stronger, richer flavor. For Tulsi Iced Tea it’s as easy as throwing a couple of tea bags into a mason jar (don’t forget to gently remove the tag & string!), fill with water and throw it in your fridge overnight. It’s ready to go for that pesky commute to work or school drop off. If I’m feeling saucy I might add some frozen fruit, lemon slices or a dash of honey.

Right now I have a steaming cup of Honey Chamomile on the desk (always late with my reviews tsk tsk). It’s officially fall in New England – window fans during the day, freezing at night, pouring rain.. you get the idea. As long as I can break out my fleece pajama pants and cozy up with a book & a cup of tea.. it’s all good.

Have I convinced you to try Organic India Tulsi tea yet? Organic India tea retails for $5.99 for a box of 18 tea bags. For a limited time you can save 20% if you head to www.OrganicIndiaUSA.com and use the code kiwi20.

I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms Meet program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of this product. 

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Giveaway! Harvestland natural chicken, pork and turkey vouchers!

Do you ever just have those moments where the planets align and things just fall in place? Or the moment where you are sent a  Green Moms Meet blogger kit for Harvestland natural chicken, pork and turkey and realize all your wildest, meat loving dreams have come true? Same thing right?!

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My family is ultra familiar with the brand Harvestland. We do a lot of our shopping at our local BJs and they offer a lot of Harvestland products. As a family with three boys who seem like they NEVER stop eating, buying in bulk is the way to go for us. Before I was given the opportunity to try other Harvestland products we mainly purchased their kielbasa, frozen chicken breasts and hot rotisserie chickens BJs cooks in-house. We ended up also trying their Florentine chicken burgers, Italian pepper & onion chicken sausage, buffalo meatballs and frozen chicken breakfast sausage. The Harvestland product line includes fresh chicken, turkey, and pork products, as well as a variety of fully cooked refrigerated, frozen, and deli meats. Harvestland also offers USDA-certified organic chicken. These chickens are raised without antibiotics on free-range, organic farms and are fed an all-vegetarian diet of certified organic ingredients.

meat products
What makes Harvestland different:

-No antibiotics ever. Antibiotics are widely used on livestock in the US. The more we use antibiotics the more resistant those strains become. The scary part is that even if we consume the meat that was raised with regular antibiotic use – it increases the chances that we will become resistant to those strains of bacteria etc too. Brings new meaning to ‘you are what you eat’. Check out this article from Prevention magazine if you want to read more on the subject.

Fed All-Vegetarian Diet With No Animal By-Products. Used to increase protein levels in livestock feed, animal by-products have been linked to outbreaks of major animal diseases as well as increases the risk of transmission of bacteria like Salmonella. 

No nitrites or nitrates added except for those naturally occurring in sea salt and celery juice powder. No MSG (people still use that?!)

All of these standards are VERY important for us. We believe that conventional groceries are full of preservatives, colors and everything icky. We are label readers, WE have standards!

 

OK I have one gripe (besides the fact they don’t offer bacon yet). What bums me out about Harvestland:

-Their website states they only feed their organic chickens GMO free feed. C’mon Harvestland.. spread the wealth. Get certified from the Non GMO Project. All the cool kids are doing it.

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Overall – Harvestland offers a delicious, convenient product at a great price. Their product variety is great and easy to find.

Want to try your own Harvestland products? Visit Harvestland  on social media (links below) and let us know what you like about Harvestland. Leave a comment below by Sunday 3/1/2015. We will pick a random reader to win $15 in free product vouchers so you can try some yourself!

In the meantime check them out online –

Harvestland @ Facebook Instagram Pinterest Twitter

And don’t forget to follow us online as well –

matchingmummies @ Facebook Instagram Pinterest Twitter

 

I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms Meet program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of this product.

Reese’s peanut butter chocolate spread – i’ve never had such mixed emotions about chocolate and peanut butter!

I’ll admit it. I am SO not a fan of Valentine’s Day. I hate pink, for starters.

Have you ever researched the roots of Valentine’s Day? There are some interesting articles. Everything from Roman men getting nekkid and hitting the ladies with whips made from goat skin…. to the most interesting story of forbidden love and the ultimate sacrifice in the name of love. Unfortunately it’s become a forced day of roses, chocolate and chalky candy hearts.

Ok so I’m getting off topic. Thanks to the lovely folks at Influenster and Reese’s  – they sent me some Reese’s peanut butter chocolate spread to try out. Chocolate and Peanut are a marriage made in heaven. Reese’s peanut butter cups are usually my impulse buy as i wait in the overly long lines at Target. Reese’s also brings me back to when I was 12. I went to my first Faith No More concert and Mike Patton was wearing an orange Reese’s tshirt. *sigh*

When I opened the jar I was enticed by the smell of Reese’s peanut butter cups. YUM! First taste – a bit underwhelming. It was more sugary than chocolate peanut buttery. Slightly grainy and not so peanut butter creamy. Of course I’m comparing with Nutella.. which tastes like what it is.. chocolate hazelnut spread. While it does fill a craving for all that is sugary sweet, I think I would use it more frequently if the ingredients started with peanuts instead of sugar. My other gripe is their use of the petroleum based preservative, TBHQ. I don’t want to eat something that is found in cosmetics and pet food.

When I review – I always try to use it a few ways to get a feel for it. In this case.. i added what makes EVERYTHING taste better – BACON. I cooked up some super delish, nitrate free Applegate Farms Good Morning bacon. It’s made from pork shoulder instead of belly reducing 60% of the fat. Let it cool completely before using. Then a pan on low I added the Reese’s spread and a few splashes of coconut milk to thin it out a bit. Once it reached a creamy, pourable texture I took it off the heat. Dip the cooled bacon into the Reese’s spread and place on a sheet of wax paper. I crushed up some shredded bacon and sprinkled it on top. Then I threw them into the freezer because I wanted to firm up the chocolate.

About 20 minutes later you’ll have this:

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If you’ve never had bacon and chocolate you really haven’t lived. So all in all I’d give the Reese’s peanut butter chocolate spread a 5 out of 10. While it has a good flavor, it’s nothing I could see myself keeping in the house regularly.

I received this product for free to review via Influenster & Reese’s. All my words and opinions are my own 🙂

Day 1 : Aveda Naturally Straight

I’m not gonna lie.. Blow drying my hair is THE worst. I loathe it. Mostly because my hair gets wavy and slightly frizzy. In order to tame the mess I have to use my flat iron.

Heat + Heat = Dry!!

The lovely folks at She Speaks and Aveda sent me Aveda’s new product Naturally Straight.

From their website:
*After 5 consecutive applications of naturally straight, hair will stay straight for up to 3 washes*

Ok here are my results from my FIRST use. FIRST! Oh and did I tell you I just used the blow dryer? No flat iron!!

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(I received this product for free, all words are my own)

Zevia soda – refreshing drink or cocktail must have???

zero calories + naturally sweetened + delicious= trifecta of awesomeness!

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Thanks to my friends at Moms Meet I got to try Zevia zero calorie soda in some pretty awesome flavors! Black Cherry, Ginger Root Beer, Mountain Zevia, Grape, Cream Soda, Orange, Lemon Twist and Grapefruit Citrus to name a few. What I didn’t realize was that they make almost 15 DIFFERENT flavors.

zevia-productHands down my favorites were Grape & Grapefruit Citrus. I have ALLLLWAAAAYYYY been a grape soda fanatic and minus heading to our local soda shack you can’t find anything that doesn’t have everything TERRIBLE about regular soda – artificial everything, high fructose corn syrup etc etc.

pssssst. Can I tell you a secret.. ? Can I trust you..?

These sodas are important to keep in your pantry. What? Did you just ask ‘WHY?’

Because. Like every other parent out there.. when the kids go to bed.. what do you want to do more than anything in the world? (remember that this is a family friendly blog.. minds out of the gutters people!)

MAKE COCKTAILS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

There are many variations. My favorite recipe:

matchingmummies-stress-relieving-tasty-beverage

2oz Tequila (2oz is for a normal day, 4oz is preferred)

1/2 oz fresh squeezed grapefruit juice

1/2 oz fresh squeezed lime juice

Combine, add ice, top with Zevia Grapefruit Citrus soda

(you’re going to thank me later)

Have I not shown you the ways of Zevia soda yet? Here’s some other game changers:

*This soda contains no calories, sugar or artificial sweeteners.

*Zevia Zero Calorie Soda is sweetened naturally with a unique blend
of high purity Stevia (grown right here in the US!) and Monk Fruit.

*It’s totally Kosher, Vegan, and Gluten-Free! totally.

So is this something you’d want to try for FREE?? 

win this

Just comment on our blog with what flavor you’d want to try. TWO randomly selected winners will receive 2 coupons for a free 6 pack! (psst our Instagram page is running the contest too!) Contest is open until 9/30/14!

Can’t wait until then? Head to their website and grab a coupon NOW!

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Connect with matchingmummies & Zevia

zevia.com
facebook.com/zevia
twitter.com/zevia
instagram.com/zevialife
pinterest.com/zevia

facebook.com/matchingmummies

twitter.com/matchingmummies

instagram.com/sjordanusher

pinterest.com/matchingmummies

Hey dude.. put down my stash..

ozzy the soda stealer

xo

Sarah

 

I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms MeetSM program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms MeetsSM blogger, I agreed to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of the product.

ginnybakes cookies & mixes: gluten free, organic AND delicious? Yes please!

I had the pleasure of sampling some ginnybakes cookies and baking mixes thanks to the Moms Meet blogger program. I was blown away by the box of samples… what a great selection! I wasn’t familiar with the brand but have tried a bunch of different kinds of gluten free cookies… most of which were.. um… not great? However the ginnybakes brand holds it’s own.

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My favorite thing about these products (besides being non-gmo and organic) is how they taste homemade. Let’s face it.. when you had a Grammy that knew how to bake.. most store bought treats just don’t cut it. Oatmeal Coconut Bliss was hands down my favorite. Hello, my name is Sarah… and I’m a coconut-aholic. And they were just that, bliss. The Butter Crisp cookies reminded me of Christmas as a youngling. There is something about a buttery, sugar cookie that brings you back to being a kid. I think it’s the sparkly dusting of sugar ;o)

oatmeal detailsugar detail

 

Their ginnybakes mixes are just as great! I made the ‘lovely brownie bliss’ in my mini donut pan. I am not a huge fan of using oil in any baked goods. I’m the crunchy momma that always uses those handy little cups of apple sauce. (the ginnybakes recipe calls for coconut oil.. which i LOOOOOVE but ran out of in my AM smoothie). Using the applesauce made the brownies moist and cakelike. My boys went nuts over them. As you can see kid #3 was angry he couldn’t eat them all… sorry dude.

brownies

 

As always I try to learn everything I can about the product I’m reviewing.. Their website is beautiful and their Instagram makes their founder, ginny simon, incredibly accessible. I was in awe when she started to comment on my posts about the product! Most of the time when you tag companies you never expect to interact with their creator!

From their website:

“founded in 2010 by ginny simon, ginnybakes is the realization of a dream. combining ginny’s passion for nutrition, active living and baking, our products are a natural expression of her dedication to leading healthy, balanced lives.”

And you can tell by their social media that they live that mantra. Photos of food, life, family and wellness. Unlike most company’s social media accounts, I thoroughly enjoy ginny’s updates. As a consumer I feel better about the products I choose when I feel a connection to the people and the passion behind them.

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Last but certainly not least they offer ginnybars and ginnyminis. Peace, Love & Apple was my favorite. They also make Love & Nuts, Karma, Love & Apricot and Happy Chocolate Bliss. Crunchy and slightly chewy made this lady happy on her long commutes to work. And then once I got to work I knew I had a little treat waiting for me later. ginnyminis are the perfect little snack during the day. Just enough to take the edge off ;o)

peace love applechocolate minis

 

Please check out these links and follow kindly:

ginnybakes Facebook

ginnybakes Pinterest

ginnybakes Twitter

matchingmummies Facebook

matchingmummies Instagram

matchingmummies Pinterest

matchingmummies Twitter

 

 I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms MeetSM program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms MeetsSM blogger, I agreed to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of the product. 

 

Squeasy Snacker – coolest/easiest/awesomest reusable food pouch. EVER.

I’m sure many of you can relate – kids LOVE anything in a pouch.

Applesauce – check.

Spinach mango – check.

quinoa salmon squash etc etc – check.

Kids will eat ANYTHING in a pouch… but it’s just too darn expensive. I can get like 3x the amount of applesauce in bulk than I can in pouches. But guess what.. my three boys ain’t got time for that.

So the solution – Squeasy Snackers! The lovely folks at Squeasy Gear are on the up an up and were kind enough to give me some to review (and to give away..keep reading!)

6ozgreen-2TI’ve seen many designs of reusable food pouches and usually it boils down to ONE thing.. how easy it is to clean. The best part of the Squeasy Snacker is that they’re made from 100% Food Grade Non-Toxic, BPA free, PVC free, Phthalate Free Silicone. You can easily inside-them-out to clean or throw them in the top rack of your dishwasher.

I was hustling out the door one day and decided to just put water in them. The kids thought they were so cool to use. However.. they had to get used to the squeasy-ness. Thankfully it was a hot summer day and they appreciated getting squirted in the face!

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The next thing I decided to do was make a smoothie in them. I did our old standby – coconut water, frozen berries, local maple yogurt and bananas! It was chilly and refreshing and a healthy snack.

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You can check out my kids reaction here on my Instagram post(Just like my kids to scream about going pee in the background! Ahh to be a Mom to three boys):

So you want to check one out for yourself? I have one Squeasy Snacker to give out to a lucky reader! Contest runs until 8/31!

To qualify you must comment on our blog below:

What would YOU put in your child’s Squeasy Snacker?

Like our matchingmummies Facebook page

Like Squeasy Gear’s Facebook page

Earn 1 extra entry by liking matchingmummies on Twitter!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

I received this product for free from the sponsor – Squeasy Gear. As a blogger, I agreed to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions are my own and I was not paid in any way!