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Holiday Travel Tips With Food Allergies | Just Take A Bite

Holiday Travel Tips With Food Allergies

Don’t miss out on family gatherings this year! Follow a few simple travel tips with food allergies to keep everyone safe and having fun. Plus enter for a chance to get even more great real food information.

Holiday Travel Tips With Food Allergies | Just Take A Bite

The holidays are a time to celebrate, a time to see friends and family and a time to enjoy good food. You can relax and take a break from every day duties. It is something to look forward to all year long.

Unless you have food allergies.

If you or your child has food allergies holidays can be stressful! Did someone put the butter knife in the jelly jar? Are there nuts in the pesto? Is there anything I can eat? Did cousin Joe wash his hands before playing with the toys?

Start celebrating.

When it’s time to pack up and head out for the holidays there are some things you can do to take the stress out and add the fun back. Plus you’ll get to enjoy good food too!

  1. Ask for the menu ahead of time.

 Whether you are visiting grandparents, siblings or friends ask for the menu in advance. Be sure to ask for details and ingredients.

This will give you an opportunity to offer suggestions and substitutions if necessary. It will also give you an idea of how much safe food will be available.

  1. Pack your own food.

When you have food allergies you always have to be prepared with safe foods. Pack a cooler with a few simple, nutritious foods. This can be anything from raw fruits and vegetables to cheese slices, bacon and hard boiled eggs. Whatever you tolerate.

If there won’t be much on the menu that you can eat don’t hesitate to bring something more substantial like a sandwich, roasted chicken or a thermos of soup.

Just be sure you have plenty for a meal and some extra. People change plans at the last minute and you don’t want to show up and be caught off guard that the food you were planning on isn’t available.

Holiday Travel Tips With Food Allergies | Just Take A Bite

Hamilton Beach Single Serve Blender Review + {Giveaway!}

Hamilton Beach Single Serve Blender Review and Giveaway | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

*I am working with Stonyfield and Hamilton Beach for this post. I have been compensated for my time commitment to use this product. However, my opinions are entirely my own and I have not been paid to publish positive comments.*

With a family of five it would seem that making single servings of anything is not something I normally do. However, with all of our allergies/intolerances I actually make a lot of individual servings. Everyone needs something different.

So when it comes to smoothies I usually have to make one or sometimes two at a time. I always use my Vitamix. It’s easy. Plus it sits on my counter!

But I was given the opportunity to try a Hamilton Beach single serve blender recently. It’s a neat idea to have a light weight, smaller blender that can do one smoothie at a time.

I like that it’s easy to carry one handed (when I have a baby in my arms).  Plus it doesn’t take up much counter or cupboard space. I also love that the top of the blender can serve as your glass. No need to pour and scrape. Just blend and drink.Hamilton Beach Single Serve Blender Review and Giveaway | Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

On the down side it can’t handle frozen fruit – which is what I usually use to make smoothies. I let some fruit partially thaw before blending. It still took quite a few tries to pulse and then scrape down the sides before it actually started blending.

If you typically use fresh fruits and vegetables for your smoothies this would work very well! Just add your fruit, some yogurt, blend and drink. Simple.

For most of my smoothies for the family I’ll probably stick to my Vitamix because it is a lot more powerful. But during the summer when we have lots of fresh fruit I’ll definitely use the Hamilton Beach single serve blender for quick smoothies.

This would also work well for making smoothie popsicles. It makes just the right amount to fill a few popsicle molds.

I’m glad I got to try this blender. It’s fun, light weight and easy to store. Now you have a chance to try one too! Stonyfield and Hamilton Beach have teamed up to offer one of my readers a single serve blender so you can make your own smoothie creations. Enter below for your chance to win!

This giveaway is now closed.

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In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog.

Dental Health, Redmond Earthpaste and {a Giveaway}

Earthpaste Review and Giveaway || Homemade Dutch Apple PieIt’s mid-October. Which means Halloween will be here soon! In addition to the pumpkins, cute kids and fun costumes there will be an abundance of candy and treats.

I’m thankful that my kids are still young enough to not get that into Halloween. We do let them trick-or-treat right by our house. They enjoy dressing up and seeing all the other costumes.

When we get home they pretty much hand over the candy. My son can’t have any of it because of allergies. My daughter is usually allowed to have a couple chocolate treats. The rest is traded in to Daddy for money.Earthpaste Review and Giveaway || Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

Even though my kids don’t eat much in the way of processed candy I still make them treats at home.

Regardless of the source they are still sweets…and can have an impact on the health of your teeth.

The natural solution is to brush well twice a day. That’s great! But what are you using to brush your teeth?

Most toothpaste is filled with artificial color and flavors, chemicals to make it foam and fluoride.  None of which you need to be putting in your mouth.

What are the alternatives? You can make  your own. But not everyone wants to go that route.

You can also buy a natural toothpaste. Unfortunately almost every natural toothpaste I’ve ever seen has glycerin as one of the main ingredients.  And while it isn’t necessarily bad for your overall  health, it’s not that great for your teeth. Glycerin coats the teeth and prevents remineralization.

I learned that the hard way after using a natural toothpaste for a while and all of a sudden having a mouth full of sensitive teeth.

As if toothpaste for adults wasn’t bad enough, take a look at kids’ toothpaste. They are all neon colored and so full of artificial flavors. Not to mention the fluoride that is in toothpaste for kids as young as two! But if your kids are like mine they can’t handle the mint flavor of adult toothpaste.Earthpaste Review and Giveaway || Homemade Dutch Apple Pie

So what is the solution?

Recently I tried Redmond Earthpaste for the first time. My initial reaction…I LOVE it!! But better yet…so do my kids!

Earthpaste contains no chemicals, no colors, no artificial flavors and no glycerin. They have several wonderful flavors. I can’t tell you which is my favorite because I like them all.

I love that Earthpaste uses essential oils for flavor.

Best of all – the kids’ flavor is lemon…and my kids like it! No “spicy” toothpaste. No overly sweet toothpaste. Just a mild lemon flavor that even my child with oral sensory issues enjoys.

Right now I alternate between cinnamon and wintergreen. Both have very mild flavors and leave my mouth feeling fresh. There is also peppermint and now spearmint! They are all great choices.

The cleaning power comes from the Redmond clay. It is antibacterial and even helps digestive health. So there is no need to worry if your kids (or you!) swallow their toothpaste. It’s actually good for them.

Halloween is coming. Extra sweet treats are coming. But you can keep your kids’ teeth healthy with quality toothpaste.


I’m very excited to be giving away a two pack of Earthpaste to THREE readers!


This is the best toothpaste I’ve found. I hope you try it and like it as much as my family does.

Have you tried alternative toothpastes? What is your experience?Earthpaste Review and Giveaway || Homemade Dutch Apple Pie
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Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil Review and Giveaway!

gold_label_virgin_coconut_oil_32ozDo you use coconut oil? I sure do! Especially with a son that is allergic to dairy. Coconut oil makes a wonderful substitute for butter when baking or cooking.

I’ve been using coconut oil for a few years now. But recently I tried Tropical Traditions coconut oil for the first time.

I was very impressed with both the taste and texture of the coconut oil. It worked very well for all of my cooking needs. I use it to make things like graham crackers, dairy free crackers, muffins or even meatballs and stir fry. Most days I also add coconut oil to my hot chocolate.

What else do I do with coconut oil? I use it to make homemade toothpaste and deodorant to avoid chemicals. I also use it straight from the jar as lotion. I love how I smell like coconut without any artificial scents. Tropical Traditions Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil has a wonderful coconut smell!

We went through a quart of Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil pretty quickly. I just restocked my pantry with more. Tropical Traditions offers great deals and even free shipping. Be sure to sign up for their newsletter so you don’t miss any chances to get a great product for an even better price.

If you still need more information about exactly what Virgin Coconut Oil is or how to use it, Tropical Traditions has a great explanation for both.

As someone that does a lot of dairy free baking and cooking I use coconut oil almost daily. But even if I didn’t have to make food dairy free I’d still use it! Coconut oil is that great.  And Tropical Traditions is a great resource for coconut oil.

Be sure to enter the giveaway for a chance to win a quart of the Virgin Gold Label Coconut Oil so you can try it yourself. It is a great product with many uses.

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*Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.

If you order by clicking on any of my links and have never ordered from Tropical Traditions in the past, you will receive a free book on Virgin Coconut Oil, and I will receive a discount coupon for referring you.” Failure to display a proper disclosure statement could result in discontinuation of the referral program.

The Nourished Metabolism and Love Your Body Review and Giveaway!


Over the years my blog has gone in different directions. I have always tried to focus on healthy, nourishing foods. But the content has taken many forms and gone in some extremes. I even wrote a post once about various diets and the pros and cons of each.

In time I have figured out that the most important thing is to listen to my own body. I have to take care of it, give it what allows me to thrive and not follow someone else’s rules.

I can tell someone else exactly what foods I avoid and what foods I eat regularly. But they should not follow the same diet. Everybody is unique and has different dietary needs.

That being said, there are some general guidelines that apply to most people. It is not about specific foods. It is about learning how to listen to your body and nourish your metabolism.

Whenever anyone asks me about getting on track with healthy eating, my first suggestion is to read The Nourished Metabolism by Elizabeth Walling. This is the best health-related book I have ever read. It helped me on my road to recovery. It even helped me more than “healing” diets like GAPS.

The Nourished Metabolism gave me the freedom to finally let go of rules and figure out what was best for me. I have read it multiple times and enjoy it every time I do.

The process of taking care of your body and healing is not an easy one. You may gain or lose weight. You may be very tired and need to cut back on your normal amount of activity. During this time it can be difficult to undergo some of the physical transformations.

That is where Love Your Body comes in. Elizabeth helps you learn to accept your body and marvel at what it can do. You don’t have to be a certain size or shape or at a certain fitness level. You need to love the body you are in and do your best to take care of it.8694543286_968c6cdaa1

In my own healing journey I learned a LOT. I am very thankful for Elizabeth’s books and how they changed my perspective on health and nourishment.

I learned about how body temperature, digestion, hair, skin and even my mood are indicators of how well or how poorly my metabolism is working. I learned just how critical enough quality sleep is. I even learned that there are some wide-spread myths about salt, sugar and water intake.

If you are interested in really nourishing your body and feeling your best, The Nourished Metabolism is a great place to start!!

I am giving away a bundle of both of Elizabeth’s e-books. I can’t say enough great things about them.

Even if you don’t win the giveaway, Elizabeth is offering her books  HALF OFF for the whole month of June! Or you can get both of them for an even better discount. Simply use the code SUMMER50. I hope you grab your copy today!

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In order for me to support my blogging activities, I may receive monetary compensation or other types of remuneration for my endorsement, recommendation, testimonial and/or link to any products or services from this blog.

Toxin Free Cleaning – Norwex Review and Giveaway!

Before I even started my real food journey I learned a little bit about how toxic traditional cleaners are. I was blown away by how harmful they can be. It’s very scary. So I started making my own.

Vinegar and water for window cleaner. A mix of vinegar, water and Dr. Bronner’s for an all purpose cleaner. Homemade scrubbing powder. These are much safer and much cheaper than the conventional cleaners you find at the store.

I did this for a few years. And there is nothing wrong with using homemade cleaners. They work well, and I felt good about using them in a house with small children.

Then I started hearing about Norwex. I was invited to several Norwex at-home parties. I couldn’t make it to any of them. And didn’t think too much about it.

Then I heard more and more about Norwex. I was intrigued. I had a friend that was selling the products. So I decided to order a small starter pack of cloths. They sat on my desk for a couple months. I didn’t know how to use them or what to do with them really.

Finally one day I decided to open them and see what the commotion was all about.

I used my Norwex microfiber antibacterial cleaning cloths…and I have never looked back. If you want a truly toxin free clean house, use Norwex. A cloth and water is all you need.

Norwex cloths use an antibacterial microfiber. So it disinfects without any chemicals.

“At only 1/200th the size of a strand of human hair, Norwex Microfiber is one of the most innovative products in the cleaning industry today. When combined with the unique Norwex knitting process, Norwex Microfiber becomes a highly effective cleaning agent and can hold up to seven times its weight in matter. Unlike cotton cloths that will simply spread the dirt, grease and other particles around, Norwex Antibac* Microfiber lifts these particles up into the cloth and away from the surface. Once inside the cloth, the Norwex MicroSilver in the cloth goes to work with self-purification properties against mold, fungi and bacterial odor within 24 hours, so that it is ready to use again.”

What are some of the best things about Norwex cloths?

  • You only need water to clean your house.
  • You can reuse the cloths quite a few times before they need to be washed.
  • You can use them on everything from kitchen sinks to toilets to messy faces 🙂
  • You can wash them with the rest of your laundry. No special cleaning necessary.
  • They are antibacterial – great for getting rid of the germs in your house.
  • They are very cost effective. Simply buy a few cloths and use them over and over and over for years to come. No need to buy cleaners or the ingredients for homemade cleaners.
  • They save time. No need to make cleaners. Just grab your cloth, get it wet and you’re ready to clean.
  • Kids can easily help clean with Norwex products.

I have tried quite a few of the Norwex products. My personal favorites are the multipurpose envirocloths, the baby body cloths and the body cloths.

We also use the dryer balls, dishwasher soap, wet and dry mop, oven cleaner, makeup remover cloths, polishing cloth, optic cloth, dusting mit and bathroom scrub mit. They are all amazing. Even my one year old loves to use the cloths and the mop. Sometimes I can hardly clean because he takes them from me. I hope to someday get some of the kids cleaning products.

Norwex also has a line of natural beauty and skin care products. As well as household cleaners.

Whether you’re new to natural cleaning or have been making your own cleaners for years, I recommend trying Norwex products.

To help get you started I am giving away an envriocloth! You could probably clean your whole house with just this one cloth.

This is my first giveaway!! Very exciting. I hope you’ll enter. The giveaway will end Sunday, March 31. Simply check out the Norwex products and answer the question below.

Please share this information and giveaway with your friends and family.

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