Mom Date Day Break: Coffee Cake Muffins & McCafe Coffee

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #McCafeMyWay #CollectiveBias

I spend my days cleaning up messes (lots of them. everywhere.), changing diapers, playing “go fish,” watching Daniel Tiger (meow meow) and Rescue Bots, and sometimes speaking to no one over the age of 4. Sometimes…. I feel like I’m losing my mind. Just a little lot. It took me far too long to realize that I need to also take care of MYSELF. I need to create “me time” and do things that make me happy, even if it’s just 5 minutes a day! One thing I like to do is bake and there are a lot of good recipes on the Cooking Up Good site!

Most days, my “me time” is simply my morning coffee. By now even the kids know I don’t function without it and Ryan (my 4-year-old) works the Keurig to make it for me sometimes. Sipping on my coffee IS my “me time.” It’s my happy place! And mid-afternoon? I’ll probably have another cup!

Coffee Cake Muffins

I’m part of a local “club” just for moms and it has been wonderful for my sanity, haha. The kids get to make friends and play and mama gets to speak to adults and get out of the house! I host play groups at our house sometimes and the coffee is always on! I love my morning coffee, but it’s even better when I’m sitting on the couch with friends while we watch our kids happily play together.

enjoying my coffee me time

coffee timeNeed a Mom Date Day Break?

Brew some of your favorite coffee to share and make some coffee cake muffins—the perfect accompanying snack. You and your friends can enjoy together while the kids play… the kids will love the muffins, too, if they need a snack! Even better? Do the baking and brewing together… being in the kitchen is always easier when the kids are entertained by others to play with!

Baking and brewing with friends!

Baking coffee cake muffins

McCafé coffee pods (yummmmm) are now available at Walmart and I couldn’t wait to try them out! McCafé is premium coffee made with 100% Arabica Beans and there are LOTS of options—8 flavors! Don’t have a Keurig for the McCafé pods? There are bags of ground coffee, too. So next time your toddler pulls something like this…….

little stinker

…… and you’re ready to cry (or laugh/go crazy/run/fill-in-the-blank), grab SOME FRIENDS, some McCafé coffee, and a yummy snack. Take a breather and start over. Here’s my recipe for coffee cake muffins:

Coffee Cake Muffins

Coffee Cake Muffins
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Author:
Serves: 24 muffins
Ingredients
  • TOPPING:
  • ⅔ cup granulated sugar
  • ⅔ cup light brown sugar
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 cup melted unsalted butter
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • MUFFINS:
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup light brown sugar
  • 4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1½ cups milk
  • ⅔ cup canola oil
  • 4 eggs
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F and line a muffin tin with paper liners or nonstick spray.
  2. Make the topping first so it can dry by the time you need it.
  3. TOPPING:
  4. Combine sugars, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl. Whisk in melted butter.
  5. Add flour and stir until moist.
  6. Spread out mixture on wax paper to dry.
  7. MUFFINS:
  8. In a large bowl, combine dry ingredients (the first 6).
  9. In a separate bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients (last 3). Pour this into the bowl of dry ingredients and stir until mixed.
  10. Scoop batter into the muffin tray. Sprinkle with crumb topping, pushing it into the batter a little bit.
  11. Bake for about 15 minutes (toothpick in center should come out clean).
  12. ENJOY! :)

Want to try the McCafé coffee?! Check out your local Walmart  for a McCafé demo that are at locations nationwide from 12/18 through 12/21!

If you need more inspiration, check out the Cooking Up Good website. It has recipes, sweepstakes, loyalty programs, coupons and more! What’s not to love? If you’re looking for a new dinner idea or a chance to win some awesome prizes, be sure to check it out!

What’s your favorite “me time?”

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #McCafeMyWay #CollectiveBias

Play Osmo: the coolest new interactive iPad game

I’ll admit that both of my kids are iPad obsessed. One of Ryan’s favorite things to do is search the app store for awesome new games to play. He’s almost 5 and we do money counting games, math, sight words, puzzles, and some critical thinking games that are even hard for me. Yes, we play some Angry Birds, too ;) Rebecca is almost 3 and likes anything Disney or watching Daniel Tiger, meow meow. While I do feel they’re learning on these games, sometimes I’d like to get them off the iPad and back to the real world!

We recently discovered the BEST interactive iPad game EVER. Seriously. It includes the iPad, but also game pieces to bridge “the real and digital realms for unlimited possibilities of play.” I may have gotten it to review, but I’d be purchasing it in a second anyway. Let’s play Osmo!

Play Osmo

Osmo currently includes 3 games that offer never-ending imaginative game play. You get a base stand for the iPad, the reflective piece that sits on top to create your play area, and pieces for the “Words” and “Tangram” games.

It’s really easy to get started. The iPad just sits in the base and the reflector just slides on the top. Then you go to the Osmo website that has easy links to the app store to download the included games (for free).

Play Osmo

My kids play with Osmo together. That is rare, but they’re both so into it that there’s no time to fight ;) We started with my favorite, Tangram! You’ve probably played with Tangrams before–the mix of shapes you use to create images.

Play Osmo

We started with the basic intro to tangrams on Osmo. It shows the images to create on the screen and below that it’s explaining you need to recreate that image with your physical tangram pieces in the play area below the iPad (the area that’s “seen” by the reflector).

I was really impressed with how well the reflector works! It’s not super picky about the location of your pieces, as long as you’re playing in front of the iPad (where you’d play naturally), it identifies the shapes quickly! Ryan even made a square with 2 triangles of the same size, but the colors were switched and Osmo knew… it didn’t move on until he flipped the colors.

Play Osmo tangrams

Then we moved on to “Words.” You can select a “Junior” reading level where it fills in some of the letters for you and you have to fill in the blanks or you can play free play or against another player. There are red and blue letters so if you’re playing against someone else, Osmo keeps track of score by the color of letters used!

Play Osmo words

You get a few chances to use the wrong letter. In the photo above, I thought maybe the word was “barn.” We tried a “B” and it was wrong. Ryan said “it’s a farm, mom!” and of course he was right! He is at the PERFECT age for this as he’s learning to read and spell so I’m really excited about this!

He asks for my help a lot, but I’m encouraging him to continue sounding out the words slowly and guessing at what comes next. I separated the vowels as a tip to help him try one of those when he wasn’t sure on the sound.

Play Osmo words

You can select levels of difficulty and Ryan was playing on “easy.” The photo above was one of the harder ones on this level because it was two words. You can see the little circles at the top where your incorrect guesses go—if you fill them all before spelling the word, your turn is over. Your points show on the side and if you’re playing against someone else, their points would show on the right side.

Play Osmo Newton

The third game for Osmo is “Newton,” a super creative and free play kinda game. You don’t need any specific game pieces, just your own creativity and things around your home! This game is totally Ryan’s kinda game–he tries to find games like this to download on the iPad, but NONE are as COOL as this. The goal is to guide a falling ball into a targeted zone. Add objects into the play zone to help get the ball where it needs to go! SO COOL. Can I say that again? It’s REALLY COOL.

Now, it’s YOUR TURN to play Osmo! I cranked up the difficulty in the “Words” game to impossible. I started it off with two letters for you, now see if you can finish and guess the word for the image below! Good luck ;) Leave a comment with your guess (but don’t read them from others)!

Play Osmo

Buy Osmo for $79.99  with free shipping. Order TODAY for arrival by Christmas!!! Otherwise it will ship by Dec. 30th. It is a great game for kids and the entire family to play together! It’s educational, loads of fun, interactive, encourages creativity, and I can’t say enough how awesome it is. Find Osmo on Facebook and Twitter, too!

Play Osmo

~Written in partnership with Osmo. Any opinions are my own!

Recycling Tips to Make it a Habit #TurnItGreen!

We’ve always been good about recycling as much as we can, limiting waste, and reusing when possible. I mean, we both have environmental related degrees (his in engineering, mine in the sciences) so what can you expect?! There are all kinds of tips and tricks out there to teach your kids about recycling, but I think learning by doing is the best way! Kids will grow up doing what they know. If recycling is always a part of our lives, it will be a part of theirs—because it’s just what you do. I partnered

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Great holiday gift ideas from Best Buy

Still doing some holiday shopping? If you’re done, I DON’T WANT TO HEAR ABOUT IT! Haha. But we are almost done. Ya know, when you start in October, you should be all done and wrapped with pretty bows by now, right?! Nope. 9 days to go!

I partnered with one of my favorite stores, Best Buy, to share some great gift ideas with you! With “expert service and unbeatable price,” these top gifts are on my list this Holiday and here’s why they should be on yours:

Xbox One is the place

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Gift Giving Tradition: the night before the night before Christmas

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #NorthpoleFun #CollectiveBias

When I was a kid, my brother and I always got to open one present on Christmas Eve. It was usually a new pair of holiday pajamas! Now that my husband and I have two kids of our own, we continue the tradition! Except for one major problem… our Christmas Eve is SO busy! We spend it with my parents first and then we head to his parents’ house. By the time we get home

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Give the gift of an online adventure with Animal Jam

As a reader of Baby Dickey, you must know by now that this house loves Animal Jam. The kids love playing on the interactive playground and I love finding awesome crafts and activities for them to do. Animal Jam’s Read More…

Turtle Toffee Cheesecake recipe

What’s on your holiday dinner menu this year? We’re pretty traditional and don’t change it up too much year to year, but I like to try new variations. One year, instead of plain cranberries on the table, I made brie and sugared cranberry crackers. I’ve added chocolate to my pecan pie. I spiced up the “cheese and crackers” appetizer with spinach artichoke dip.

This season, I partnered with Save-A-Lot to try something new! My friend Tiffany shopped with the goal of keeping this UNDER $25—Save-A-Lot makes it easy, you could definitely shop there and

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