Author - HackMom

That’s it, I quit

Bossy mom

Well, it’s finally happened. I knew it was coming. People said it was unavoidable – and they’re right.

I have turned in to my mother.

Don’t get me wrong, my mom is amazing. She’s always worked hard to make sure I had everything I needed, is sweet, loyal and very giving. She also calls every kind of tissue Kleenex. Every sanitary napkin is a Kotex and she fully, 100% believes that if you go outside with wet hair, you’ll get a cold. Maybe your immune system is compromised when you have wet hair? Who knows. God love her.

So the other day, I was talking to Babycakes and she asked me to get something for her. I was in the middle of putting away her laundry, so I said “in a minute”. Now, Babycakes has the attention span/patience of a rock (no rocks are not patient) and within two minutes of her original request she asked me to get whatever-it-was again. Before I could stop myself, I opened my mouth and my mother’s words came out “I hope one day you have a child with your patience”.

I stood there, mouth hung open, eyes wide…I couldn’t believe I said it. My mother’s words when I was 9 or so – verbatim. Horrific.

Growing up is weird. Being a parent is even more strange….I’m going to start a new wordpress site called Shiz my mom says. Because apparently, I’ll be saying it all too one day

 

Cheeky reminders?

cheeky customer service

customer service

I’ve noticed a new thing that retail websites are doing, maybe you have too. I’ll do some internet window shopping, adding a few things to my car but not actually completing an order. Then, I’ll get an email reminder from the website saying something like “hey, you still have items in your cart” or “still thinking about it?” I don’t mind these e-mail reminders per se…in fact, I’ve actually gone back and completed a couple of orders because of them. Anthropologie and Nordstrom offer friendly reminders that are effective, IMO.

But then, I got one from eddiebauer.com. It seriously said “Aren’t you forgetting something?” For some reason this really rubbed me the wrong way. Why is Eddie Bauer judging me? Why am I getting harassed by a clothing store? Is this what the world has come to?

After getting a few of these e-mails from “window shopping” I must’ve had too much caffeine one day, or possibly was a little emotional and decided to fire off an e-mail to their customer service. I’m not expecting a response, if any…but it made me feel better.

Here it is, verbatim:

“I’m writing to tell you that your email reminders about items left in shopping bag are making me NOT want to buy from you. They’re cheeky at best, downright rude at worst.

The first one I got was: “Remember us?” – This one isn’t so much rude as it is annoying. I have a Grandma that asks the same question every time I call her, I don’t need a website that is looking for my business pulling on my guilt muscle as well.

The second one: “Your items are waiting” – My items are waiting for what? Me to release them so they can go make dinner? Waiting for my decision on whether I want the “Berry” or the “Spruce”? I’m pretty sure the items in my cart don’t have a conscious and if they do, I don’t want them anyway. Clear my cart.

Finally and my absolute favorite: “Aren’t you forgetting something?” Get out of here – are you serious? I forget EVERYTHING and usually much more important than some shirts and a backpack left in my cart. Usually it’s my car keys, which I’m sure you can understand how hampering this is to my daily life. I don’t need another reminder from YOU – Eddie Bauer – that I am forgetful.

So, if you could, please pass this on to those who make decisions on what is sent in these emails. I don’t mind a “you have items in your cart” reminder e-mail, in fact I welcome it. I just ask that you take a look at what you’re sending and make sure it’s in a tone that  you would use with your mother. To her face.

Thank you for your time,

Dyana”

The best part is, when I attempted to submit this e-mail, the customer service page went to a 404 (broken page). So in real life, when trying to complain to eddiebauer.com customer service I essentially got…the middle finger.

 

Lilsugar MomHacks

Organization-Ideas-Moms

A PopSugar shout out – I LOVE this site. Fashion, Celeb news and even tips for your littles! Here is a post after my own heart (link goes to their lilsugar.com, part of the PopSugar.com family) with some AWESOME Mom Hack ideas… There are some really cute ideas here! I love the dish drainer/coloring organizer idea…so cute! http://www.lilsugar.com/Organization-Ideas-Moms-30913898

So, Kindergarten happened…

Rocket Natalie

When I was pregnant with Natalie, I got a lot of advice…most of it useless but occasionally there was a nugget of wisdom. “Having children is like having your heart walking around”. It sounded cheesy at the time, but now it makes so much sense.  Watching Natalie walk in to Kindergarten on Tuesday felt much like my heart ripping out of my chest and walking in to that school.

kid walking in to Kindergarten

There’s no way to prepare yourself for that feeling. You are allowing veritable strangers to take care of something so precious, you have spent essentially every minute of their lives with them. If you don’t have kids, imagine that the car of your dreams is in your garage right now. You worked every day for 5 years straight to get this car. Now, drive that car to a garage you’ve only been to once before, park in a random spot, leave the keys in the car and walk away. Maybe they give you a ticket, maybe they don’t, but they “assure” you that your car will be fine. See you in 7 hours. It’s hard for me to let go of anything and there was honestly a split second where I felt like snatching her and running home. I’ve never been one for homeschooling, I like the social aspect of regular school and I also believe that most teachers are under appreciated. I’m pretty sure I’d be a terrible teacher too, I have zero patience. That said, I’d be super happy knowing that they were in my care, with me, until they go off to college. Or maybe I can homeschool college too? Of course I didn’t snatch her and run, but I wanted to. I sat in my car and cried, cried for the little girl she is, the baby she was and the amazing woman she’s growing up to be.

Incidentally, she loved it. Every second. Recess, learning, teachers, new friends…her world is getting bigger and mine seemed just a little bit smaller.

UGG sale at 6pm.com

purple uggs

If you’ve never been to 6pm.com…GO THERE NOW. Seriously…it’s a “deal” website operated by zappos.com and it is wonderful. Seriously awesome deal. Right now they’re featuring and UGG blowout – up to 50-60% off! There are a lot of small toddler sizes and big kid sizes (sadly, nothing really in the size range for my girls) but they’re all really good deals plus free shipping…check it out!

http://www.6pm.com/ugg-ugg-kids~1#!/ugg-kids-girls/UgKgAloC8wPAAQPiAgMLChg.zso

6pm

Amazon Mom promo

amazon-mom

In a previous post, I mentioned how I use Amazon Mom for diapers, wipes, subscribe and save discounts…a whole bunch of stuff. Well, they’re having a promo that if you sign up for Amazon Mom (even a trial) and spend $10, you get $5 for using my referral code and I get $15! Then, of course, you can create your own referral code and spread the word, earning $15 for yourself with each sign up.  The Amazon Mom service is pretty amazing and with this referral code, you can’t beat it.

Earn $5 back for orders of $10 when you sign up through http://smile.amazon.com/gp/mom/signup/info?ie=UTF8&refcust=TVVEQ6LKS62JQ2MUWXYPBDAOMU&ref_type=generic

 

 

Seattle Premium Outlets *Mom Hack*

img-center-Seattle Premium Outlets

Who doesn’t love a good discount?! As school shopping is upon us, I figured I’d give you one of my insider (not really) ideas. If you go to Seattle Premium Outlet Stores (the ones up North in Marysville/Tulalip) website and sign up for their VIP program, you get discounts in addition to whatever they’re offering in-store. For instance, today I went with my mom and after getting the VIP coupon book, we saved anywhere from 10% to 25% on top of all their sale prices. Pretty awesome.

Here’s the link to the VIP program. When you get to the outlet stores, you just sign in to the VIP program on your phone then show it to the people at the Customer Service/Information desk, which is in the food court area in the center of the stores. Once they’ve confirmed you’re a member they’ll give you a coupon book. Then, you just go to whatever store you want and show them your coupon book and get the additional discount! So far it seems pretty painless. They’ll send you a spammy e-mail every once in a while (less than once every two weeks or so) but that’s usually just to tell you about whatever discount is being featured. Burberry even had a 25% off coupon a couple of months ago, so there are a variety of stores that are included. It’s not every store though, because I have yet to see anything from Kate Spade….you take the ups with the downs, you know?

So anyway, if you’re headed up there any time soon, sign up for the VIP program and save yourself some (more) money!

https://www.premiumoutlets.com/vip/

 

GAP 40% off FRIENDS AND FAMILY

gap-logo

Of course. 3 days ago I posted about how Gap always has sales, but I put up the 25% off coupon code anyway. Then today, I got the email…40% off. This coupon is good for Aug 7th-10th and 40% off is nothing to sneeze at…but seriously? 3 days ago was 25% off?!

Anyway, here’s the coupon code:

FFBEST

Gap 25% off

gap-logo

Ok, I realize that Gap is always running some discount or another, sometimes up to 40% off. This is only 25% off, but as back to school shopping starts gearing up, I thought I’d throw it in here. Use the code SUN for 25% off Gap.com, expires 8/6/14.

The girls are always losing socks so I used that code and ordered like 40 pairs (no joke) for a total order, with discount and using the free shipping, for under $130. Yes, on socks. The sock monster is real in our house and he’s HUNGRY.

 

 

Savory and Sweet – recipe 2fer

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After being with my husband for over 15 years, I’ve come to believe that good relationships are based on the idea that whomever you’re with makes you a better person. Ideally, the person you’re with brings out your best qualities and vice versa. Usually, this only manifests if you are not *too* much like your spouse, although I realize that many successful relationships are two people who have more in common than not. In any case, I like to think that my husband and I bring out the best in each other, although we can certainly argue some of the dumbest stuff in human history. We once had a 24-hour argument over the size of the turkey we were going to buy for Thanksgiving. No joke. I even went to sleep mad that night, which they say you’re never supposed to do, but sometimes you just have to put your foot down. About a 20lb turkey. YES IT MATTERS.

Anyway, my husband and I usually agree on most things, but there is one thing that we’ll never agree to: sweet vs. savory. Jason would rather have a juicy grilled steak pretty much over anything else while I, on the other hand, would happily skip over dinner if it was more socially acceptable to just eat dessert. So, as a treat for you, I offer you a recipe 2Fer, a sweet and a savory, both of which compliment each other well and together, should please any personality.

THE SAVORY

 

KuKuRuZa Copycat Brown Butter and Sea Salt popcorn

1 Cup of unpopped popcorn

1 Stick of unsalted butter

1-2 Tbsp of sea salt, depending on taste

Add salt to unpopped popcorn and set aside. Cut the stick of butter in to 1 tbsp size pieces.  Using a heavy bottom pot (I use my Le Creuset), melt the butter on Medium-High heat (more towards Medium, especially if your stove top runs on the hot side). Swish the butter around every couple of minutes (this is sometimes called agitating) just by lifting one side of the pot and swirling the butter around until it turns brown. Once brown, add 3-4 kernels of unpopped popcorn to the pot and cover. Once the pot reaches the right temperature, the kernels inside will pop. When you hear those popping, add the rest of the popcorn/salt combo. Pop on the same heat for 5-10 more minutes until there are several pops a second. Turn the heat off and vent the top of the pot super slightly, tossing the popcorn in the pot until most of the popcorn is popped. You’ll have to guess, otherwise lifting the lid off the pot and risking a hot popped corn flying in your eye. When done, toss in a bowl and enjoy!

Side note, KukuRuza (formerly Popcorn Pavilion) is a popcorn place in our local mall (Bellevue Square) that sells a similar popcorn to this, although I think this freshly popped version is better. Plus, the popcorn at KuKuRuza sells is literally like gold – the price of it anyway. A 1 Gallon tin (I’m not sure how much the actual tin costs) is $28. It’s worth it, don’t get me wrong…but it’s not convenient to get to and the cost is a little off-putting, at least the way my husband and kids vacuum this stuff up.

 

THE SWEET

Lemon Blueberry Poundcake for Nosh And Nourish Blog (http://noshandnourish.com/)

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This was a bonus recipe that only people signed up for Kelly’s e-mail newsletter received. I highly recommend signing up – she has a bunch of amazing recipes and puts a lot of time/effort in to recreating dishes to add healthy boosts. My kids gobble anything I make of hers up, and this pound cake is no different. As she said in her e-mail newsletter, pound cake is usually laden with butter and sugar. At only one stick of butter and 3/4 cup of sugar (coconut sugar even) and honey. The Whole Wheat pastry flour adds some fiber and the greek yogurt, a little hidden boost of protein. The girls inhaled this and my husband, the savory lover, even enjoyed a piece.

This pound cake is amazing and would be a wonderful addition to a brunch, lunch, midnight snack…you know. Whenever.

 

Ingredients:
1 stick butter
3/4 cup coconut sugar
1/4 cup honey
3 Eggs, beaten
1 tbsp lemon juice
1/2 cup lemon Greek yogurt
1 tsp vanilla
2 cups whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tbsp baking powder
1 cup frozen blueberries

For the sauce:
1 cup powdered sugar
2 tbsp lemon juice

Directions:
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
2. Using a hand-mixer, combine butter, coconut sugar, and honey and beat on low  for approximately 5 minutes.
3. Slowly add in one egg at a time, mixing in thoroughly with the hand-mixer.
4. Add in lemon juice, greek yogurt, and vanilla, then mix again.
5. In a separate bowl, mix the dry ingredients with a spoon: flours, sea salt, and baking powder.
6. Slowly add the dry mixture into the blended wet mixture, beating on low to thoroughly combine before adding more.
7. Once all the dry mixture is combined into the wet mixture, coat the blueberries with a bit of flour, then mix them in with a spoon.
8. Use sprayed parchment paper (or foil) in a loaf pan, and bake for one hour.
9. Near the end of the baking, combine the powdered sugar and lemon juice together with a spoon. Drizzle (drench) over the warm loaf.

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Ooey, gooey, deliciously sugary yumminess. Enjoy!

 

*Disclaimer – neither KuKuRuza nor Nosh and Nourish paid or contributed to this post in any monetary way. These are just recipes I’ve tried out and enjoyed, so I thought I’d pass them along!

*Disclaimer 2 – My food photography blows, but hopefully you get the point. The deliciousness shouldn’t be based on my crappy pictures, but of the end result when you try to make this yourself!