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Whole Foods 365 Everyday Value Products

I think it’s safe to say that a lot of people know what Whole Foods is these days. What I’m not sure about is, whether or not all of those people know about the different Whole Foods product lines that they offer; especially the very reasonably priced 365 Everyday Value line.

From the Whole Foods website:

Value priced plus high quality

Our 365 Everyday Value® products can fill your pantry without emptying your pocketbook. With value prices every day of the year, our products are formulated to meet all our quality standards, come in both natural and organic selections, and will change the way you shop at Whole Foods Market®. That’s because we have it all — from whole grain flours and shade-grown coffee to organic milk and frozen veggies. We make it easy to stock up on the best products for the best price.

365

They offer a variety of products — everything from herbal supplements, cleanses, essential oils, organic pizzas, ice cream, salmon, juice, crackers, soy milk, salad dressing, coffee, and SO MUCH MORE. Recently, the lovely folks at the Whole Foods Andover gave me an awesome basket of products to sample.

Here is a list of what was in the (fabulous) bag — keep in mind, the whole bag was less than $35:

1. Organic Blue Tortilla Chips — Non-GMO Project Verified (The Product Verification Program uses a process that combines on-site facility audits, document-based review and product testing to verify compliance with the standard at every level of the supply chain, from manufacturing facilities to ingredient suppliers. For a product to be verified and bear the seal, it must undergo a process through which any ingredient at high risk for GMO contamination—soy or corn, for example—has been proven to meet the standard through avoidance practices and testing.)

2. 365 Wild Albacore Tuna – 100% pole or troll-caught (Looking for some quick and simple meals to make with canned tuna? Find some here!):

3. Organic Fusilli Pasta

4. Canola Mayo

5. Organic Medium Salsa

6. Organic Green Tea (Colin and I are slightly obsessed with green tea. Are you too? Find some fun and creative ways to serve it here.)

7. Organic Italian Dressing

8. 365 Sparkling Water

9. 365 Water Crackers

10. Artichoke Hearts

11. 365 Citrus Dish Soap: No phosphates, no phthalates, no chlorine and no artificial fragrances. The scents of citrus, lavender and pine come from 100% natural essential oils and there are some unscented options too. Also, there is no animal testing on the products and the packaging is recyclable and made with post-consumer recycled materials.

All of these items adhere to Whole Foods strict quality standards; featuring foods that are free of artificial preservatives, colors, flavors, sweeteners, and hydrogenated fats.

Check it out!

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The afternoon I picked up my bag, I couldn’t help but use some of the products right away! I whipped up a quick pasta dish for dinner that Colin and I ended up loving. I used the organic fusilli pasta, added in the 365 artichoke hearts, and then some sauteed spinach, garlic, red pepper flakes, and Parmesan cheese that we had. Quick, and quite delicious (if I do say so myself).

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If you’re in the area, save the date for Whole Foods Andover’s Spring Tea Party. :)

When: Saturday, March 23rd from 11am–3pm

What: Enjoy a taste of spring with Whole Foods 365 Everyday Value products!

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Check out what’s on sale this week in Andover. And don’t forget to check out Whole Foods Andover on Facebook and Twitter to stay up-to-date on their sales and events.

I received these Whole Foods products free of charge, but my opinion (as always) is honest, and my own! Thank you to the Whole Foods team for providing me with some of the facts about their products, and for this opportunity.

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Taste of the Nation

I haven’t blogged in a while; I wish I had more time for it these days. Unfortunately I don’t though, and I just have to accept that for now. But when I hear about something or someone SO GOOD — I want to shout it from the rooftops. Thus, right now I am writing about the Taste of the Nation event instead of writing my Life Science kindergarten lesson plan for grad school. Eh, what can ya do?

Taste of the Nation is an amazing (and delicious) event that raises critical funds needed to support Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign, which is dedicated to ending childhood hunger in America by 2015. Get ready for this: ONE HUNDRED PERCENT OF TICKETS SALES GOES TO THIS CAUSE.

What an admirable way to spend your money.

Taste of the Nation

Taste of the Nation

No Kid Hungry

No Kid Hungry

As an Early Childhood Education graduate student and someone who works in a public kindergarten classroom, I see students who come to school hungry; they haven’t been fed at home. Thankfully, they are able to enjoy breakfast first thing when they get to school in the cafeteria. But, I must say — it is heartbreaking to think about what happens at home for some of these children; what they eat for each meal, if they are eating healthy, etc.

A quote from the No Kid Hungry website:

According to Hunger in Our Schools: Share Our Strength’s Teachers Report, 62% of America’s teachers regularly see kids who come to school hungry because they aren’t getting enough to eat at home.

Let’s work together to put an end to this!

Details for the Taste of the Nation event:

Where: Cruiseport Boston at Black Falcon Pier (amazing views of the Harbor)

1 Black Falcon Avenue

Boston

When: Thursday, April 18th

Time: VIP admission, 6:00pm — 9:30pm

General admission, 7:00pm — 9:30pm

Cost: VIP, $150

General admission, $95

Discount Info: From 3/10 — 3/17 use LUCKYBOSTON for 17% off

From 3/21 — 3/29 use EATOUTBOSTON for 15% off

Buy: Purchase tickets here, ce.strength.org/boston or call 1-877-26-TASTE.

Who/What?:

More than 55 of the city’s finest chefs and restaurants will participate alongside the event’s five Honorary Chef Chairs: Gordon Hamersley of Hamersley’s Bistro; Andy Husbands of Tremont 647; Jody Adams of Rialto and Trade; Tony Maws of Craigie on Main; Joanne Chang of Flour Bakery and Myers + Chang. Attendees will also be able to sample more than 100 varietal wines, fine craft beer from the Boston’s most talented brewers and a variety of cocktails prepared by some of Boston’s premier mixologists.

Organizations that will benefit from this event include The Greater Boston Food Bank, Project Bread, and Cooking Matters. Please check out the event on Twitter @ShareStrengthMA (#TONBoston) and Facebook at Share Our Strength Boston.

I hope to see you there!

Happy New Year + thinkThin giveaway!

A year can seem really short, or really long depending upon how you look at it. What’s definite is a lot of different things happen throughout a year; good things, bad things, exciting things, big things, little things — you get my point. For me, every time a new year rolls around, I feel a sense of new beginnings — a chance to try to be a better person, a healthier person, a kinder person. This new year — 2013 — is a fresh start.

{*Giveaway below!*}

One of my goals during these first few months of the New Year, is to get my butt back into shape. You see, I did so well and was so proud of myself over the summer working really hard to get into shape for our wedding in September, but then…I just stopped. I was so sick of working out and sick of watching everything I ate, that by the time the wedding was over I gave up. I’ve been eating whatever I want, and definitely not exercising much at all. I’ve been feeling very sluggish, and not so great about myself lately. There’s no doubt about the fact that working out and eating well gives you more energy and makes you feel better overall — about yourself, and just healthier/happier in general. Anyway, I’ve discovered a new product that really excites me in reference to eating better — thinkThin® bars. Once I read part of their belief system (quoted below) I knew I found something that was worth my time; it’s exactly how I feel about exercising and eating.

This is what I mean…

“At thinkThin®, we believe strongly in the premise of weight wellness. This is the optimal weight range at which our bodies feel happy and healthy. This is not defined or dictated by aesthetic, shape, weight or tape measure — it is the physical and emotional outcome of feeling good, energized, funny, confident and living a life filled with joy and laughter. Once we focus on being healthy and happy, our bodies will follow and align.” (from thinkThin’s® website)

thinkThin® is a company that seems (to me) to not only promote maintaining a healthy lifestyle, but also a fun and exciting one as well. Check out their ten amazing tips for the New Year.

My personal favorites from their list? “Compare yourself only to you”, and “Book a flight for this weekend. Even if it’s only $59 dollars away.” Two things I should really keep in mind — that I am unique, and I should be more spontaneous (and sometimes less attached to my schedule/planner/routine). These are great:

thinkThin® bars are gluten-free (check out their helpful gluten-free tips), they are easy to grab on the go, and light enough to carry around (hence their “thinkThin®” name), but are packed with lots of protein. Not only are these bars easy to pack and whatnot — they are also delicious! When you mention flavors like creamy peanut butter, white chocolate, chocolate fudge, dark chocolate, chocolate espresso, cookies and cream, caramel fudge, etc. it’s hard to say no. What else is awesome about these bars? They are sold in Target! (Find them at a Target near you).

thinkThin® would like to give one daily craic reader a thinkThin® Weight Wellness Variety Pack! These are amazing; they include 10 Creamy Peanut Butter bars, 10 CRUNCH Mixed Nuts bars, 3 boxes of Bites (5 bars each) + a thinkThin® water bottle! ($76.00 value)

To enter, please comment below. I would love to know your best tips for staying on track with eating healthy and working out? I could use some inspiration and motivation for 2013! {Winner will be announced this Friday, 1/4/13}

Please also like thinkThin® on Facebook – not only to stay up to date with their news and events, but because when you share thinkThin’s® photos on Facebook, they then makes a donation to the Dream Foundation. Easy way to help those in need — and that’s an excellent vow to make for 2013. :)

Our family garden!

Colin and I eat a ton of veggies on a regular basis, and in the summer we eat even more…so, we’ve decided to start a family garden over at Meg and Matt’s house. This is the first full summer Meg and Matt will be in their new house, and they have a beautiful backyard with plenty of space. Luckily they only live about two miles from us, so we’ll be able to go over and grab some veggies pretty easily. (Not to mention that I usually come up with any excuse to go over there so I can see my boy Dec).

We helped Colin’s grandfather plant his vegetable garden over the weekend, and then we planted ours on Monday — so basically, we’re gardening pros. I really enjoy it! I’m also very excited to see what we get, and to eat what we get! It’s awesome knowing that in a few weeks our hard work will pay off.

Our trust engineer, Colin designed a fabulous layout for our garden. :) (We didn’t end up planting everything he has on here, but did plant most of it).
Garden Layout

We did end up planting:
Tomatoes
Red Peppers
Jalapeno Peppers
Cucumbers
Squash
Zucchini
Onions
Basil
Parsley
Mint
Lavender
(And we have space to plant a few more things as well — hopefully lettuce and broccoli!)

Here are some pictures of our work in progress:

Trip to Home Depot

Trip to Home Depot

Digging away

Digging away

Becoming planting pros...

Becoming planting pros…

Almost there!

Almost there!

Now we wait...

Now we wait…

Do you have a garden? What are you most excited to grow?

A full heart

I truly love Thanksgiving. A day filled with tons of food, family, laughter, relaxation, wine, and all sorts of treats – is A.O.K in my book. I hope you are all enjoying the day with the people you love.

I wanted to share a few things I’m thankful for this year. It’s nice to acknowledge those things in our lives that we are grateful for. Here’s to keeping this feeling going for the whole year and not just during the holidays!

T he most handsome fiancé in the whole world with the biggest heart whom I love so much

H ealth and happiness

A bility to learn, grow and strive to be a better person every day

N ephew – Declan has brought such joy into our lives these past few months. I cannot image a life without him!

K indness of others

S pending time with my amazing faimily – no matter how loco they (we) are (miss you Pat!)

G reat friends, near and far

I Phone and iPad :D

V ermont – specifically Stratton Mountain where I will marry my best bud in September

I nspiration – all the folks that inspire me on a daily basis

N ecessities – a wonderful apartment, good food, vino, beer, (wine and beer can be considered necessities, right?!) clothing, a warm shower every day, a cozy bed

G etting to pay my bills every month because I have a job – a job where I continue to learn something new every day

Happy Thanksgiving!

What are you thankful for?

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