A Roundup of Cozy Fall Essentials and Comfort Foods! (Updated on 10/17) ~ Dallas Mom Blog and Fort Worth Mom Blogger: Trendy Mom Reviews
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Saturday, October 17, 2020

A Roundup of Cozy Fall Essentials and Comfort Foods! (Updated on 10/17)

This is one of my favorite times of the year. The cool fall weather is finally here. Pumpkin spice is everywhere. The crisp air is perfect for morning walks or runs. Baking is in again. (Although, you'll still find many Texans who grill year round!)  The weather is revitalizing.  However, Fall 2020 is unique as everyone is social distancing. Many parents are working from home while overseeing virtual schooling. It's not easy for parents. We could all use special fall treats to add some comfort and excitement to our days. In today's post, we'll share a Roundup of Cozy Fall Essentials and Comfort Foods.

Wine Insiders curates fabulous wines that are perfect for cozy fall evenings. Who doesn't enjoy a relaxing evening with a good glass of wine? Wine Insiders curates excellent wines with great pricing. They currently have a highly coveted 4.9 out of 5 stars from thousands of customers on Google. (I rarely see Google reviews that are so high!) They earned their reputation by expertly curating wines from 40 popular varietals and 15 top wine regions. Their ability to source top wines at low prices is part of why they are so popular.  They are also able to offer better prices as they don't have typical markups that are associated with marketing, advertising, and store operations. Another point of why we love them is that they offer an amazing Satisfaction Guarantee in which they promise to make it right if you are not completely satisfied. We recommend stocking up on 6+ bottles for upcoming cozy fall evenings at home because it's nice to have a small collection of special wines at home, plus they offer free shipping to your door or to a convenient pickup location!

Tavour offers unique craft beers that you won’t find locally. The curators at Tavour source from hundreds of independent brands for unique finds from top artisans on the front lines of craft beer. They know their stuff and offer an amazing selection of beers that are perfect for fall evenings. They will deliver to your doorstep. Your package of craft beer is something to truly look forward to on cool Texas evenings!

JBL's Endurance Sprint Earbuds are perfect for runs in the crisp autumn air.  Now that the Texas heat is subsiding, I am able to enjoy morning runs in the cooler weather with good music through these comfortable headphones. Texas weather is well known for changing quickly and seemingly out of nowhere. Since these in-ear headphones are waterproof, I don't have to worry if there is a sudden sprinkle on my run. The FlexSoft ear tips and TwistLock technology help to make them comfortable. They offer eight hours of playback. When you are done with them for the day, the earbuds are magnetic and won't get tangled when you put them away. Thanks to the Speed Charge battery, it's quick to recharge them since every 10 minutes of charging provides an hour of power!  These are my new go-to earbuds for fall runs!

Eggtronic   Eggtronic has you covered in terms of charging devices.  I recently saw a comedy video in which parents were taking turns working from their car because that was the only way that they could find a quiet space for work meetings without their children being loud in the background. It's not easy to work from home and homeschool children. It requires a lot of shuffling! Whether you are shuffling around to quiet places throughout the day or have sensitive work data that you need to protect, Eggtronic has you covered.  The Eggtronic laptop power bank has three fast charging ports (45W USB-C, USB Quick Charge and USB-A) to charge a multitude of devices such as a laptop (1.5 times), a tablet (3-5 times) and a phone (4-8 times) in one fully charged lifespan. No matter where you go for your quiet space, Eggtronic has you covered with this handy power bank. We also love it for travel since this device makes it easy to charge all of our different devices.  Last year, we tried to recharge everyone's devices using car accessory chargers, but this didn't work very well. We had to take turns and it barely worked. The new Eggtronic is more convenient and literally more powerful for family road trips!  This is a great investment for families.

PeachskinSheets will help to keep you cozy on cool fall evenings and throughout the year. The name PeachSkinSheets is fitting because this southern brand's sheets are 1500 TC and super soft. They are great quality, plus you can’t beat the competitive prices. Personally, I have a deep mattress with a thick featherbed, so I appreciate that the fitted PeachskinSheets are generously deep for my setup.  Thanks to their luxurious design, I don't have to fight with my sheets when I put them on my bed or worry about the corners popping off.  Plus if you are looking for a specific color, they will even send you sample fabric swatches. I currently have the Classic White sheets. This color is on sale for the entire month of October. You will also find rich fall colors on sale this month including Pumpkin and Midnight Black. 

If you follow regularly, you may know that we love Squishmallows! The award winning Squishmallows line has sold over 50 million of their amazingly soft plush toys since their 2017 launch in North America. They have created 450+ characters over the past few years. As soon as you hug one of these love-able characters, you'll instantly know why Squishmallows are so popular. These toys are fantastic for all kids, but especially for people with anxiety and sensory issues or kids on the spectrum.  They come in a variety of fun characters and sizes. For instance, you'll notice examples in the photo above. The Avocado Squishmallow is almost as big as my preschooler who seems to melt away into this stuffed animal. My oldest son loves the Flip-a-Mallow that flips between a shark and adorable fish. The Octopus adds to their creative ocean themed play. Another favorite is the sweet Unicorn which is soothing for children to hug. Squishmallows are the ultimate cozy fall essential for little ones!

Bake Me a Wish has you covered when it comes to memorable baked goods for Halloween and Thanksgiving. This New York based company is over a decade old and ships baked goods across the country.  The way that it started is that the founder had just moved to Manhattan and wanted to send his mother a Tiramisu cake, but no one provided the service to mail a cake. He realized the need for a hassle-free service to send delicious cakes to family and friends. He got together with friends and created the iconic Bake Me a Wish company! They are perfectionists who pay meticulous attention to detail. They use amazing recipes and premium ingredients to make their crave-worthy baked goods. They neatly package each item so that your recipient feels special when they open it.   We recently tried their Jumbo Halloween Cupcakes that come in spooky designs. My children love Halloween cake walks, so we had our own cake walk at home with these delicious Jumbo Halloween Cupcakes.  If you aren't familiar, you draw numbers on the ground and play music. When the music stops, everyone has to stand on the number that is closest to them. We then pull a number out of a Halloween bucket. The person who is standing on that number wins a cupcake!  We modified this game slightly by drawing 12 numbers on our circle so that we sometimes pulled numbers out that no one was standing on. This helped to make the game last longer with more excitement.

Bake Me a Wish also offers pumpkin pies and pumpkin cheesecakes that are perfect for Thanksgiving or any fall evening.  We recently tried their pumpkin pie and quickly fell in love with it.  I'm not sure what their secret is in this recipe, but it's absolutely amazing!

Raw Spice Bar is a great source for spices that are perfect for fall baking. If you follow regularly, you may notice that we've been fans for several years. Their spices make a big difference in recipes.  The Organic Essential Spices Set is perfect for this time of year when you begin cooking more in the fall and winter months. They also have other fantastic spices for any recipe that you have in mind. Personally, I just baked a pumpkin pie today and used a mixture of Cinnamon and Ceylon Cinnamon. The spices make a big difference. Visit Raw Spice Bar here.

Runamok Maple offers barrel-ages syrups. You may have heard of them in the New York Times or on Oprah's list of favorite things a few years ago. Runamok Maple offers pure maple syrup and unique varieties that you high quality ingredients. We tried a few of their syrups and have to agree with Oprah and others that Runamok Maple Syrup is wonderful. We tried a few varieties.
Sugarmaker's Cut, Cinnamon + Vanilla Infused Maple Syrup, and Bourbon Barrel-Aged Maple Syrup. The Sugar Maker's Cut is the very best organic syrup of the season. They actually taste each run and set aside this batch.  It has an amber color and rich taste. My boys love this variety! The Bourbon Barrel-Aged Maple Syrup is another great choice.  This variety takes time, but the syrup draws the essence of the bourbon without alcohol. This is my husband's favorite!  The Cinnamon + Vanilla Infused Maple Syrup is a great dessert syrup. We put it on pancakes, pumpkin waffles, and ice cream. Both of my boys rate this as their favorite syrup. When I have extra time to cook breakfast on weekend mornings, they are thrilled to see this syrup on the table! You will find Runamok Maple Syrup online or locally at Central Market and Whole Foods.

Moon Cheese snacks are perfect for those who are looking for snacks that are packed with protein, but low in carbs and sugar-free. These trendy little snacks get their name from their look -- they resemble little pieces of the moon!   Moon Cheese is made from 100% real cheese but a few varieties have natural seasonings as well. The secret behind these vegetarian snacks is that they sucked the moisture out of the cheese. The result is a crunchy and flavorful treat. These trendy little snacks are delicious! 

My children are obsessed with them.  I actually have to ration the Moon Cheese because they can't resist going overboard on these crunchy snacks.  These are definitely worth stocking up on for fall snacking!

Reed's Real Ginger Ale is all-natural and does not contain anything artificial.  It is made with 2,000 mg of real ginger. The crisp and clean taste is the perfect complement to many fall meals and snacks. It's also great for mocktails or cocktails. This is my favorite ginger ale because it's all natural and you really taste the ginger. 

Virgil's is an all-natural handcrafted soda brand. They offer zero sugar varieties thanks to a blend of natural sweeteners. Their sodas come in delicious flavors such as cola, lemon lime, orange, and root beer.  My husband commented that they tasted like regular sodas.  It's pretty amazing that these sweet drinks are truly zero calories!

Slammers Snacks are my preschooler's favorite snacks. If you follow regularly, you probably noticed that my son is obsessed with them. When I heard that Slammer's Snacks was making changes, I was nervous because my son is picky and the previous versions seemed to already meet his ideas of perfection. Luckily, the new changes rocked his little world! The Slammers Snacks chefs know how to make kids happy with their recipes.  These pouches are made from organic ingredients and come in BPA-free packaging.  They do not use GMOs. They do not add extra sugar, artificial flavors, or artificial colors. Slammers Snacks are peanut-free and gluten-free. It's nice to have a healthy go-to snack for my preschooler!  Use their store locator here.

Nonni's Biscotti is a delicious treat to pair with your morning coffee or latte. Nonni's Biscotti comes from the little town of Lucca, Italy where a Nonni (an endearing term for Grandma) made biscotti to share with family and friends. When Nonni came to America almost a century ago, she brought the family recipe with her. This brand is so popular here that it is the top selling biscotti brand in the country and is sold from coast to coast. Nonni's Biscotti recently returned their limited-edition Pumpkin Spice Biscotti and Gingerbread Biscotti to shelves for the fall season.  These flavorful treats are perfect for cozy mornings when you want to relax and enjoy the cool weather. They are made with real eggs and butter so that they are light, crunchy, and delicious.

zak! designs offers special plates, bowls, silverware, and cups that make mealtimes extra fun for children. Due to the quarantine, we eat at home like most people. I thought that the fun Minecraft themed items would help to create happy memories of our quarantine lunches. zak! designs has a wonderful selection of Minecraft lunchware. (If you have younger children or princesses, they also have you covered with whimsical designs.) The zak! Designs team is very knowledgeable about what children love. We have the Minecraft Kids Dinnerware Set with Favorite Characters (3 piece set) that includes the plate, bowl, and cup on the left side of the photo. My youngest son loves this set because the pieces have his favorite characters. My oldest son uses the set on the right - the Minecraft Kids 5-piece Dinnerware Set that includes the plate, bowl, tumbler with straw shown on the right side of the photo. He loves the weapons and creepers in this set! This set also includes the green fork and spoon.  Finally, their favorite items are the Minecraft Kids Creep and Ghost plates and bowls.  This set includes two large green creeper plates and two white ghost bowls. They are always excited to eat when I pull out these plates and bowls! As a mom, I love that my children will have happy memories from their special dishes. I also love that these items are BPA-free and easy to clean. My youngest son has dropped some of the items. Luckily, they are pretty sturdy and have not broken. They are well made and should last longer than their Minecraft obsession!

We also love water bottles by zak! designs. Both of my children use the Genesis Water Bottles.  These are sturdy bottles that actually hold up for my energetic boys.  My oldest son uses the Genesis 32 ounce Water Bottle and my youngest son uses the Genesis 12 ounce Water Bottle.  I like that I am able to keep track of how much water they drink with these bottles. These bottles are BPA-free. Of course, I like the clever design that makes it easy to open/close the bottles since this helps to minimize the chances of them spilling their bottle.

Colonel Popper provides an easy way to make warm popcorn on family movie nights.  It's so easy that my preschooler does the prep work! You simply add popcorn kernels and butter or oil and then let the microwave and Colonel Popper work their magic!  It only takes a few minutes to prepare hot popcorn. The Colonel Popper is the easy to wash.  This is a great item to use for family movie nights this fall!

Noodelist offers 100% vegan noodles and broth.  My husband and I eat a majority plant-based diet.  We were both raised eating meat and ate meat for most of our adult lives. After I had a health problem, I dropped the traditional Texas diet and switched to a majority plant-based diet. My husband transitioned with me to provide encouragement. The first month of transitioning our diet was tough for both of us, but now weactually feel better than ever now thanks to a majority plant-based diet! One issue was finding foods that we like. If you are considering incorporating more plant-based meals into your diet, you will want to check out Noodelist! One of our favorite vegans foods is the Noodelist Lemongrass Vegan Chicken'ish.  This tastes amazing! The Noodelist Bold & Spicy Shiitake is also delicious. Visit Noodelist here.

Mary's Gone Crackers offers vegan crackers that are hearty and flavorful.  These crackers liven up warm fall soups. For instance, my family loves pumpkin soup with a side of SuperSeed Rosemary Crackers and Super Seed Basil Garlic Crackers. My husband makes a bean soup that my children are not enthusiastic to eat, but they change their mind when the bean soup comes with a variety of Mary's Gone Crackers. If you are planning to make fall or winter soups, serve them with Mary's Gone Crackers! Visit Mary's Gone Crackers here.

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