Nescafé With Coffee-mate 2-in-1 Together Is Better #NescaféCoffeemate #Giveaway

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post in partnership with Nescafe. However, all opinions are my own.

As a busy mom, wife and working professional, the Fall is one of my busiest time of year.  I’ve been looking for different ways to enjoy my morning coffee with a busy schedule and was recently introduced to the new 2-in-1 Nescafe with Coffee-mate.    The coffees are very creamy and full of flavor and can be made in less than 5 minutes. To make a delicious hot cup of French Vanilla latte, you simply add 2 tablespoons of Nescafe Coffee-mate 2-in-1 into a coffee mug with hot water and viola, instantly create a delicious homemade hot coffee.  It’s also very tasty over ice as an afternoon refreshment or in the evening with dessert.


I’ve been enjoying my daily hot coffee in the morning for about 2 weeks as I get ready in the morning while listening to music, on my way to work and in between meetings.  I absolutely love that it is so easy to make and comes in so many great flavors. Nescafe currently comes in original coffee flavor, hazelnut and my favorite, french vanilla.

I finally decided to make my husband and daughter a cup this week and they also love it.  I feel like a Barista in my own home.  Nescafe with Cofee-mate is better together!







To celebrate the new 2-in-1 Nescafe with Coffee-mate will be giving away a two week supply to one of my lucky readers. Follow the giveaway to win:

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Restaurant Review: An Amazing Experience at Catal Restaurant & Uva Bar

I had an amazing experience at Catal Restaurant & Uva Bar recently! The Tapas, Paella and speciality drinks are delicious! The fine dining restaurant is tucked away in Downtown Disney District and offers balcony seating with the best view of Disneyland’s spectacular fireworks!  The restaurant was also voted one of the top three dining options in Anaheim’s Downtown Disney District.

We started our evening off with refreshments, wine, cheese and tapas. I enjoyed the cheese spread and the Manchego cheese air bread.  My favorite dish was the Paella.  It was actually my first time tasting Paella.  The Paella included shrimp, saffron bomba rice, snap peas, smoked paprika aïoli and was served a HUGE Paella serving Pan.

During the middle of the event we also enjoyed the Disneyland Fireworks followed by additional tapas and an extra serving of Paella. The fireworks were spectacular! We felt like we were inside Disneyland.  We had an amazing experience.

You definitely want to add this restaurant to your list of places to take your date, close friends or family members for a relaxed dining experience.  I also recommend that you make a reservation for a special occasion or for large groups.  I can’t wait to go back!

Restaurant Details
Catal Restaurant & Uva Bar – Downtown Disney District
1580 Disneyland Drive  Anaheim, CA 92802
Hours: Mon-Sun 8 am – 10 pm
Reservations: (714) 774-4442

For additional information check out Catal Restaurant menu.  You can also connect with them online on Facebook at: or Twitter at:

Buen Provecho!

Home Sweet Home! OCFair Opening Day – Top 5 Tips For Surviving #OCFair

The “Home Sweet Home” themed OCFair 2012 opened on July 13, 2012 to a huge crowd of thousands of fans from across the country. We had to be there for all of the excitement and gathered a group of foodies to enjoy the fun! The Orange County Fair has grown from a small community celebration to a huge 23 day celebration. Last year a record 1.4 million people attended the fair. This year the fair is scheduled to open Wednesday thru Sunday on July 13 – August 12. The There’s No Place Like Home themed event is a tribute to the love of food and respect for the environment in which it is grown. The focus is also on locally grown, sustainable concepts and up-cycled creativity.

We were so excited about the theme and calendar of events that we purchased full passes for the entire 23 days! Let’s just see how many times I can go to the fair for lunch during the 23 day extravaganza, especially on $2 OCFair Food Fair days!

Here are my Top 5 Tips for surviving the OCFair.

#1: Wear comfortable clothing, a hat & take Cash:

I had the shoes and outfit all planned out. Little cute flat shoes with a denim dress and an orange hat. However, I did not take any cash. Thankfully between my purse, car & pockets I found $7. The Fair parking costs $7 Cash and doesn’t accept credit cards or debit cards for parking. Some of the vendors also do not accept debit or credit cards. I had to get a couple dollars from the ATM to buy food and paid a $3 service charge to use the ATM. Thankfully there are many ATMs scattered throughout the park. However, to avoid delays and service charges make sure to take plenty of cash.

#2: Make it a Day trip and Take a group of family and/or friends:

Life is about creating memories with the people you love. Consider getting a group of people or family members together and making OCFair a memorable day trip. I’ve been working in the OC for over 16 years and have never attended the OC Fair. Getting together with my foodie friends is something I will always remember. Sharing the experience with friends made my first visit to the OCFair extra special and FUNtastic! There are so many things to see at the fair including crafts, educational demonstrations, food exhibits, celebrity chefs, livestock, musicians, performers and more. Check the daily events calendar online or pick one up at the gate for all the the details.

My favorites performers were the Peking Acrobats. However, the most memorable exhibit is the Let Freedom Ring exhibit located in the Family Fairway. The exhibit features steel beam sections from the World Trade Center and is meant to serve as a tangible reminder of the events that occurred during September 11, 2001 and a symbol of renewal, inspiration, unity and hope for our nations future. There is also a daily tribute for heroes It also has a small park to sit and reflect.

#3: It’s all about the Food! Eat lots of food, be merry & share:

I shared my food with fellow foodies and we were able to enjoy more food than when I go to the fair with smaller groups. I ate Kettle Corn, Chicken Charlie’s Maui chicken with fresh pineapples, a Fried Oreo, a Veggie Kabob and a Pasilla Chile with pepper jack cheese. Take advantage of the $2 Taste of Fair Food Days which occur every Friday from Noon-4pm. Purchase $2 items from the food vendors for a delicious time with family and friends.

Every Thursday is Food Truck Fare Thursday. Check the Food Truck lineup for schedule of trucks in attendance.

The Courtyard Wine seminars is the perfect stop for wine enthusiasts. Enjoy cheese & wine pairing with 8 award winning wines on Saturday and Sunday.

The exhibit is located in the heart of the Home Sweet Home exhibit at the Exhibit Promenade and includes a chocolate lovers paradise at the Chocolate unwrapped exhibit to enjoy divine all natural chocolate making demonstrations by Xan Confections. Robert Irvine the Host of the Food Network’s Restaurant Impossible will be there on July 26 and Fabio Viviani, Finalist on the fifth season of Bravo’s Top Chef on August 2. All demonstrations will include Q&A followed by autograph signing. Chef Ray Presents owner will be at the Fair creating amazing fruit and vegetable sculptures. Greggy Soriano Cake Lush & Pastry chef and celebrity cake designer will also be at the OC Fair daily creating cake designs.

#4: Buy the SUPER PASS:

If you’re planning on returning to the OCFair more than three times and/or considering attending a Pacific Amphitheatre event make sure to purchase the Super Pass. The benefits of purchasing a Super Pass includes Admission to the OC Fair for all 23 days. Express entry at all the Fair gates, 2-for-1 concert tickets for select Pacific Amphitheatre events, 20% off select events in the Hangar and Action Sports Avenue, a carnival ticket book.

#5 OC Fair Admission & Carnival promotions:

One of the things I admire about the OCFair is its Philanthropy. OCFair supports local community efforts by giving back to the community & families with promotions that pay tribute to our military veterans and discounts to make the OCFair a family event. You might even find plenty of small shops of different kinds with eco friendly displays propped up at the fair. This is a great way to support local businesses and help the community thrive. The OCFair also provides a way for visitors to give back with WE CARE WEDNESDAY promotions.

Here is a summary of the OC Fair Admission & Carnival promotions during July 13-August 12:

  • Everyday is HEROES GET IN FREE Day! Active military or veterans get a FREE admission daily with ID.
  • Every Thursday is Kids Day. Children 12 and under get FREE Admission. All day.
  • Every Friday is Seniors Day. $2 off senior admission plus free Ferris wheel and merry-go-round rides — all day.
  • Every Friday from Noon-4pm is $2 Taste of Fair Food Day.
  • Every Friday is $2 Rides and $2 games Day. Sold until 4pm.
  • Every Saturday & Sunday between 10am-11am is Rise and Shine Day – $2 Admission
  • $30 unlimited carnival rides every Wednesday & Thursday plus 2 free games. Sold until 5pm. Valid until 8pm.
  • July 18 – Food Drive. WE CARE WEDNESDAYS. Bring 5 canned food items for FREE Admission
  • July 25 – Children’s Book Drive. WE CARE WEDNESDAYS. Bring 1 new children’s book or 3 gently used children’s books for FREE Admission
  • August 1 – Clothing Drive. WE CARE WEDNESDAYS. Bring 5 gently used clothing items for FREE Admission
  • August 8 – School Supply Drive. WE CARE WEDNESDAYS. Bring 1 new school supply item valued $5 or more for FREE Admission.

Make sure to check out the for calendar of events and daily promotion details.

There’s No Place Like Home! Enjoy your visit to the OCFair.

Question: Have you ever attended a local fair? What is your most memorable experience at the fair? What is your favorite food to eat at the fair? What additional tips do you have for someone attending OC Fair 2012?

Wordless Wednesday – Eating My Way Through Miami at Versailles

Whenever I visit Miami, Florida I always have to make a pit stop at my favorite Cuban restaurant Versailles! The food is always fresh and delicious. The world’s most famous 40 year old cuban restaurant is [Read more…]

Mexican Chicken Soup | Caldo de Pollo recipe

There are a couple of recipes which are staples in our family.  Arroz con leche, Tacos and the famous Caldo de Pollo also known as Mexican Chicken Soup.  When the folks at  IMUSA  approached me about testing some their products, I immediately knew

I wanted to try out a family recipe with the IMUSA Aluminum Cast Caldero.   I love the color, the size  is also perfect for making meals for a small family.  As I was planning the perfect recipe I decided I wanted to test one of my family recipes and decided to make  Chicken Soup.

The Chicken Soup recipe has been passed on from generation to generation in my family.  As a child my mother made Chicken soup when it rained or for ill family friends and family.  She passed on the tradition to me and my siblings as well.  The recipe is very simple, but the most valuable ingredient is that the recipe be made with lots of love.

Mexican Chicken Soup | Caldo de Pollo recipe

This weekend it was raining, the weather was just wet, cold and called for a little TLC from Mom’s kitchen.  I made a pot of Chicken Soup and like the saying says, “It made it all better”.

Similar to family recipes, the IMUSA products are something that are passed on from generation to generation.  I love my Red IMUSA Caldero and recommend this product for amateur and seasoned cooks who love to cook.  I hope to collect a set of IMUSA cookware.

Buen Provecho!
Mexican Chicken Soup | Caldo de Pollo recipe

Mexican Chicken Soup | Caldo de Pollo recipe


1 1/2 chicken
1 medium onion, sliced
2 ears of corn, each sliced crosswise into 2-4 pieces
6 carrots, sliced
4 potatos, sliced
6 cups water
1 medium cabbage, cut into wedges
2 tomatoes, roughly sliced
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Mexican Chicken Soup | Caldo de Pollo recipe


Heat water in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the onion
and cook until the onion softens, about 5 minutes. Add the chicken, bring to a boil and reduce the heat, and simmer, uncovered, for 30-45 minutes until the chicken comes apart. Add the corn, potatos, and carrorts and cook for another 30 minutes until potatoes are tender.

Add the tomatoes, cabbage, oregano and cilantro cook for another 10 minutes.

Pull the saucepan from the heat and stir. Season, to taste, with salt and pepper. Serve hot & with lots of love.

What family recipes have been passed from generation to generation in your family?  Do   you have houseware in your home that has been passed from generation to generation as well?

This is not a sponsored post.  I received an IMUSA Caldero to facilitate this review. All opinions are my own.

Dinner with Sisters & A $100 Giveaway

I got to spend a lovely evening with my sisters & nieces this Holiday compliments of Serve.   We get together every year to catch up  on the year, give each other encouragement and a day away from all the busyness of the Holidays. [Read more…]

MasterChef Special Edition Bookazine

I’m so excited to share my new cooking Magazine, the MasterChef Magazine. Taste of Home partnered with MasterChef to create the special edition bookazine. The special edition bookazine was published the first week of July, and guess who got to preview the premier issue? Me!

[Read more…]

Restaurant Review – Old Vine Café at the Camp in Costa Mesa

I was pleasantly surprised when I walked into The Camp in Costa Mesa. From the outside it looks like a bunch of buildings made from recycled materials, but as we walked through the trails you realize the concept is a lot more than that!   [Read more…]

Blogcrush Meetup at StoneFire Grill

I had the pleasure of attending the Blogcrush meetup at StoneFire Grill in Irvine, California. Blogcrush is the largest group of bloggers in Orange County. The group has monthly meetups to connect bloggers to each other, share tips, make friendships [Read more…]


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