Dallas Mom Blog and Fort Worth Mom Blogger: Trendy Mom Reviews
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Thursday, July 19, 2018

Gigi's Cupcakes Now Ships Cupcakes Across the Country! #GigisDelivers

If you follow regularly, you know that my favorite Mommy and Me outing is a trip to Gigi's Cupcakes. I treasure the memories of the special one-on-one time with my children as we bond over the perfect cupcakes.  In today's post, I'll reflect on some of our favorite Gigi's Cupcake memories and share information about how Gigi's Cupcakes now has a shipping option to deliver cupcakes to anywhere in the United States! 

As a mom of two boys, we have a weekly ritual where I spend one-on-one time for each of them.  We call it our Mommy and Me time and they each pick something fun for us to do together.  One of the most popular Mommy and Me outings is lunch followed by dessert at Gigi's Cupcakes.  It's fun to visit Gigi's Cupcakes for our special time together because we create happy memories and then the special cupcakes are often so unique that the different flavors bring back the memories. I'll share a few of our memories.

The first memory is the Banana Split Cupcake. My oldest son had just won first place in a coding competition, so he wanted to celebrate. We visited Gigi's Cupcakes and he picked this trendy Banana Split Cupcake. We sat there for over an hour as he told me about the different problems in his coding competition and how he solved them.  Whenever we see a Banana Split, my son brings up the time that we had a Mommy and Me date at Gigi's with the special Banana Split Cupcake!

Another happy memory was a Mommy and Me date around the 4th of July.  We visited the Gaylord Texan for the holiday. However, we fell behind on our special Mommy and Me time  earlier in the week because I had to work up until the last minute before our vacation.  My husband knew that I felt bad about missing our special time that week, so he took my oldest son to Gigi's Cupcakes to pick up Bomb Pop cupcakes for our vacation.  My son and I then went to the outdoor pool area to sit and share cupcakes while talking for hours.  Whenever he sees Bomb Pops, he always reminds me of the time that we sat together eating Gigi's Bomb Pop cupcakes and talking for hours at the pool area at the Gaylord Texan.

The next cupcake is my youngest son's favorite.  This cupcake holds special memories for me because it's from a Mommy and Me trip where my children learned to collaborate.  They asked if they could bring each other on their Mommy and Me outings so that they could each have two special trips instead of one solo trip each.  I had to laugh that they wanted to share in order to double up on the special time together with me. We enjoyed lunch at Modern Market and then walked around the corner to Gigi's Cupcakes. They both agreed that they wanted the cupcake below because it was the ultimate chocolate dessert.  Whenever I think of Oreos, I can't help but smile and think about how my children wanted to merge their Mommy and Me time and how we enjoyed the Gigi's cupcake below. It's nice to be loved and to have children that want to spend time with me.

Now that I've shared some examples of how Gigi's Cupcakes triggers happy memories for my family, let me tell you about how they now deliver cupcakes nationwide.  This is not only a service that I love sharing with my family and friends, but I also plan to use it when my children go to camp or college since the perfect cupcakes will give them happy memories of our time together.

Similar to the dedication to perfection at local Gigi's Cupcake bakeries, their delivery service is also about perfection. Gigi's cupcakes, cookies, cakes, and more are easy to order online. They are delivered fresh in as little as 24 hours.  Similar to the trendy bakeries that you visit in person, the cupcakes that you order online are baked fresh daily with the same high-quality ingredients. Let me share my experience.

Gigi's ships cupcakes to households or businesses within 1 to 2 days.  We live in Texas and received our cupcakes at the height of summer heat in July. The cupcakes were carefully packaged with plenty of dry ice and were in perfect condition. 

We received the Best Sellers Box that contains many of our favorites - Wedding Cake, Strawberry Shortcake, Scarlett's Red Velvet, and Midnight Magic.

Each cupcake was absolutely perfect and instantly triggered happy memories for our family.  As we distributed the cupcakes to my family members, conversations about different trips to Gigi's Cupcakes started coming up.  It's amazing that something as simple as a perfect little cupcakes is able to relate to so many happy memories. 

I hope that you enjoyed learning about our experience. If you want to try the new cupcake delivery service from Gigi's Cupcakes, visit them here.  You may also want to follow Gigi's Cupcakes on social media because it's fun to see their latest creations. Follow them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. 

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Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Ten Examples of When I Needed Purell Hand Sanitizer This Week (Yes, all in one week)

As a Boy Mom, my children never surprise me.  In today's post, I will share some funny times this week that made me glad that I carry Purell hand sanitizing products. I'm sure that some will make you laugh.

Ten Examples of When I Needed Purell Hand Sanitizer This Week (Yes, all in one week)

1. My 1-year old picked up a dirty lollipop stick off of the floor at Grapevine Mills Mall and we were not near a bathroom to promptly wash his hands. Thank you, Purell.

2. We went to the park and my 8-year old ran to pet a dog and then came back to eat an ice cream cone that I bought for him. Thank you, Purell!

3. My 1-year old took his shoes off and put them on the table in the middle of lunch. Thank you, Purell!

4. We bought pretzels at Grapevine Mills Mall, but as we walked past the Hermit Crab kiosk, someone offered to let my 8-year old touch a crab. Of course, he quickly touched it before I could remind him that he was eating his pretzel. Thank you, Purell!

5. Let's talk about slime. Why are there so many events to make slime lately? My 8-year old made slime, left it in the hot car, and played with it on our next car ride. Not cool.  Thank you, Purell for the hand sanitizing wipes!

6. My 8-year filled his pocket with snails during his day at camp and announced this in the car ride home as he was showing them to his brother. Thank you, Purell!

7. I volunteered for an event where the kids put beads on string to make a bracelet. A little girl asked me to help tie hers. I quickly realized that she had been spitting on the end of the string to make it easier to put the beads on it. Thank you, Purell!

8. At the same event that I mentioned in #7, a child literally sneezed right into my hand when they were handing me their bracelet to tie. Thank you, Purell!

9. We had to run to my son's pediatrician to pick up a copy of his vaccination records to enroll him in daycare.  My 1-year old ran to the "sick area" and touched toys and books while I waited for the form. Thank you, Purell!

10.  The grand finale this week is that my children went to the library to see a show with snakes and reptiles. Of course, they were among the first in line to touch them after the show. Thank you, Purell!

I love my little boys and never know what they are going to do next. However, I know enough to carry Purell hand sanitizer and Purell hand sanitizing wipes everywhere that I go. I  bring the big bottles and the little spray bottles when I volunteer at events with kids because I know that it's always convenient.  The school year is just around the corner, so I will also send a good supply to our teachers who similarly know the importance of keeping Purell products on hand.

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Friday, July 13, 2018

zulily's Thrill Week is July 23rd to the 27th + Enter for a Chance to Win a $2,000 cabi Wardrobe

If you follow regularly, you know that we love the latest fashion trends.  One of my favorite stores for the trendiest fashions is zulily.  This trendy online retailer has a constantly changing inventory that stays on top of the latest trends. They launch 9,000 products, in 100 limited-time sales, on a daily basis with incredible prices for their 6.1M active customers.  Let me share some details about celebrities that inspire many trends and then tell you more about zulily's Thrill Week -- zulily.com/thrill!

In a recent poll, zulily uncovered which female celebrities Americans think are the “most-savvy” online shoppers and the results are in…

  • The ever-lovable Ocean’s 8 star Sandra Bullock topped the charts (24%), followed shortly after by the sexy screen stealer Jennifer Lawrence (18%),and then daytime TV phenom Kelly Ripa (16%).
  • She may be the “newest Royal” but Americans aren’t so sure Meghan Markle has what it takes to still be a “savvy online shopper.” The Duchess of Sussex ranked 6th from a list of female celebs, falling behind Sandra Bullock, Jennifer Lawrence, Kelly Ripa, Chrissy Teigen and Hoda Kotb.*

Want to dress like a celeb but stick to your budget? In honor of savvy-shoppers everywhere, zulily JUST unveiled the news about their first-ever zulily Thrill Week to bring a whole week of “wow!” with exclusive deals from boutique and beloved brands, all at unbelievable prices. 

In summary, mark this on your calendar:
  • Event: zulily's Thrill Week
  • Dates: July 23 to 27
  • Important Highlights:
    • A Daily Big Thrill (like a family vacation for the price of a beach umbrella, or a new wardrobe for the price of a scarf!)
    • Numerous time-limited Dashes for the Deal (like designer sunglasses for only $29.99)
    • Other surprises & delights throughout the entire customer experience from the zulily site, mobile app, social channels and more…
We hope that you enjoy zulily.com/thrill! We are certainly looking forward to it!
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Read About Our Smurftastic Morning at the Gaylord Texan in Grapevine, TX

If you follow regularly, you know that we love the Gaylord Texan in Grapevine, TX.  In today's post I'll tell about their Smurftastic activities that are sure to create happy childhood memories for your children. 

Let's start with an overview. The Smurfs theme activities include:

  • Le' Smurfs Art Corner and Sweet Shop where children's inner artists come to life while painting Smurf-themed canvases (offered Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays)
  • Breakfast with The Smurfs featuring a delicious breakfast buffet, Smurfberry punch, and table visits from Papa Smurf, Smurfette, and Grouchy Smurf (offered Saturdays and Sundays)
  • Papa Smurf’s Search Party Scavenger Hunt (offered daily)
  • Two Escape Rooms including The Magical Meadow, inviting visitors to step into a magical village and help Papa Smurf find his magic wand, and The Forbidden Forest, where visitors will solve riddles and puzzles to escape from Gargamel’s capture! (offered daily)
  • Gargamel's Wizard Academy featuring an interactive adventure, an enchanted laboratory, and tips and tricks from Gargamel (offered Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays)
  • Dance Party and Parade (offered Fridays and Saturdays)
Other summer programs will include ANIMATE!, a spectacular 3D sketch animation mapping show presented by bubly™ (offered Fridays and Saturdays), Junior Chefs Camp for kids (offered select Saturdays), Build-A-Bear Workshop®, strolling entertainers, whiskey tastings, happy hour specials, spa specials, and live music performances.

Personally, we spent the morning at the family-friendly Magical Meadow Escape Room and Le' Smurfs Art Corner and Sweet Shop.  As the mom of an 8-year old and toddler, these activities were fantastic because both of my children could have fun despite their large age gap.  It's sometimes difficult to find activities to entertain both of them at the same time, so it's nice that the Gaylord Texan is great for all ages. (My guess is that their team includes parents because they did an amazing job by creating such fun activities for a wide age group!)

We started our morning with the Magical Meadow Escape Room. I won't spoil the surprises, but I will tell you that it was a fun experience where we bonded as a family and felt like we were in a different Smurfy world.  This was our first experience at an Escape Room, but my understanding is that this is one of the few that is also child-friendly so that you are able to participate with your entire family. We checked in, watched a short video, and then began our search for a magic wand and key in order to escape from the room.  It was fun to work together as a team, especially since mom and dad didn't necessarily know all of the answers and everyone was able to contribute.   We definitely recommend this activity!

Our next stop was Le' Smurfs Art Corner and Sweet Shop where you have the option to paint canvases or decorate generously sized cupcakes to look like Smurf houses (mushrooms).

The canvases are free style as you may paint anything that you like, but they have some great examples on the wall as shown in the photo above in case you would like to create  a Smurf-themed canvas.  This is a fun activity because you get to sit next to each other as a family and spend quality time together while working on your canvases. 

The Le' Smurfs Art Corner and Sweet Shop also offers cupcakes to decorate! They provide generously sized cupcakes, a packet of toppings, and a variety of options for frosting and sprinkles. 

My children had a blast with this activity!  In particular, I had no idea that my toddler would be capable of decorating his own cupcake. He took it seriously which was fun to watch!

 My 8-year old was more creative as he decorated his cupcake and created an Oreo crumb dirt path to the door and blue frosting next to the path to look like water. The little M&M's were stepping stones.  It was fun to see him use his imagination while having fun!

In addition to the Smurftastic fun, visitors can make a splash at Paradise Springs, the resort's 10-acre outdoor waterpark. Adults can grab a cocktail and tube down the relaxing 600-foot long lazy river while kids play in a giant water treehouse, four winding waterslides, and a 6,000-square-foot family lagoon. A Paradise Springs Splash Party, presented by bubly™, will offer live DJ music, underwater photos, hair braiding, airbrush tattoos, and more. Private cabanas are also available for rent, providing extra shade, soft seating, TVs, and refrigerators. 

SummerFest at Gaylord Texan Resort takes place May 25th - September 3rd, 2018. For more information on summer room packages or event schedules and pricing, please visit here.
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Visit Fogo de Chão for the Newest Summer Offerings and a $15 Weekday Lunch

In today's post, I'm going to share a glimpse into the internationally-renowned steakhouse Fogo de Chão that is located at Legacy West in Plano.  This trendy restaurant is not only a perfect date night destination, but we also found this restaurant to be family-friendly when we visited for a Sunday brunch. They have something for everyone. Personally, my husband and oldest son love the perfectly prepared meats while I was obsessed with the unique salads at the Market Table.  Let me share an overview of the restaurant, photos from our visit, and details about specials and summer offerings.

Fogo de Chão (pronounced fogo-dee-shown) is a trendy Brazilian steakhouse, or churrascaria. Fogo de Chão uses the centuries-old Southern Brazilian cooking technique of churrasco. That is, they roast high-quality cuts of meats over open flames and then have Brazilian-trained gaucho chefs carve the meat at the tables. 

Fogo de Chão stands out beyond their iconic churrascaria. They also offer a seasonal Market Table and Feijoada Bar that contains seasonal salads, soup, fresh vegetables, imported charcuterie, and more. 

Personally, we visited Fogo de Chão on Sunday and had a lovely brunch. Let me start with the Market Table and Feijoada Bar that offers a nice variety of options, including many that are nutrient rich. Personally, I eat a lot of salads and became obsessed with the Market Table because it offers a fantastic variety of unique salads, veggies, cheeses, and meats.

My favorite salads were the Butternut Kale Salad, Chickpea Salad, and Watermelon Feta Salad. The Butternut Kale Salad is a regular offering and shown below.  (I'll share photos of the seasonal Chickepea Salad and Watermelon Feta Salad later in this post when I give an overview of the seasonal offerings.)

We also enjoyed a colorful variety of veggies.  It's hard to find Belgian Endives in the DFW metro, but you will find them at Fogo de Chão!

They make ordinary vegetables such as beans and carrots special as shown below.

They also know how to prepare good asparagus!

We loved their special sweet potato dish shown below!

In addition to all of the fabulous salad and veggie options, the Market Table offers a nice variety of meats and cheeses.

Of course, the Market Table also includes delicious breads such as the one below. (My toddler adores this bread!)

As I mentioned earlier, we visited for Sunday brunch.  They have extra options for brunch as shown below.

 They offered fresh waffles and made-to-order omelets.

Once you return to your table, you'll notice that they deliver some signature items such as the Pão de Queijo below. My entire family enjoyed these. They especially rocked the world of my toddler who would probably eat them all day if we let him.

The second signature item that they bring to your table is garlic mashed potatoes as shown below. 

The third dish is a combination of polenta and plantains.

Once we returned to our table, we also ordered Mimosas! The Mimosas are perfect for Sunday brunch.

Of course,  Fogo de Chão has a fantastic selection of wine.

Now, let's talk about their iconic selection of meats.  Each member of your party receives a coaster that is green on one side and red on the other. Simply flip your coaster to green when you are ready for the parade of meat to begin.  Once you are full, flip it back to the red side.

Fogo de Chão offers 32 different meats.  Some examples include:
  • Picanha. Prime Part of the Top Sirloin 
  • Filet Mignon. Beef Tenderloin 
  • Beef Ancho. Rib Eye
  • Alcatra. Top Sirloin
  • Fraldinha. Bottom Sirloin 
  • Costela. Beef Ribs
  • Medalhoes Com Bacon. Bacon-Wrapped Steak
  • Cordeiro – Lamb
  • Costela de Porco – Pork Ribs
  • Frango – Chicken
  • Lombo– Pork Loin
  • Linguica – Pork Sausage
I really like the transparency and clean look of their open kitchen area with skewered meat.

Here are a few examples of meat that was served at our table.

The chicken below was excellent.

The ribs were delicious too.

While we didn't have room to try all 32 options, we certainly enjoyed the meats that we tried. The high quality meat and talented chefs made our meal memorable.

We tried two desserts. The first is the Papaya Cream. This is their most popular dessert in both the U.S. and Brazil.  They blend papaya into vanilla ice cream and top it with a black currant liqueur. 

The second dessert is the Molten Chocolate Cake. This warm chocolate cake has a fudge center. It is served with vanilla ice cream and chocolate sauce. Personally, I noticed the top quality ingredients such as chocolate and vanilla beans. 

I'm sure that you are craving food from  Fogo de Chão now that you have read this post!  While  Fogo de Chão is perfect for date nights, it's also a nice lunch spot.  If you visit soon, Fogo de Chão has a nice lunch special:
The $15 Weekday Lunch includes the seasonal Market Table & Feijoada Bar plus family-style service of Brazilian side dishes. Guests may choose to add a single selection of fire-roasted meat for under $25, or indulge in the Full Churrasco Experience.
This special offer is perfect for a daytime date with your husband or even a Mommy-and-Me date with your children.  Personally, my children love the opportunity to dress up and go out to lunch with me.  Fogo de Chão is a perfect restaurant for us to visit and create happy childhood memories. I'm a boy mom, so the opportunity to let my little gentlemen practice their manners is always nice. Plus, they adore the food at Fogo de Chão!

Fogo de Chão also has some new summer offerings:

Heirloom Tomato & Mozzarella – Ripe red and yellow heirloom tomatoes are layered with fresh Buffalo mozzarella and topped with extra virgin olive oil, cracked black pepper and basil.

Chickpea Salad – This protein-rich salad features chickpeas mixed with summer basil, fresh parsley, red onion, and red bell pepper, then is dressed with a house-made lemon Dijon vinaigrette.

Watermelon Feta Salad – Refreshing watermelon is tossed with feta, summer basil, fresh mint and cracked black pepper making this the perfect summertime salad.

Watermelon Fresca (Non-Alcoholic) – This mocktail is back by popular demand! It features fresh watermelon blended with pure cane sugar, lime and mint, and is served over crushed ice.

We hope that you have the opportunity to visit Fogo de Chão for a date night or summer lunch date.  For an inside look into the history and heritage of the gaucho culture, watch the NBC Olympic Games vignette “The Gaucho Way” or visit Fogo.com, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

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