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Goal Setting

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It is hard to believe that yet another year has flown by. It seems like just last week we were welcoming in 2013. One of the most important things in order for me to set new goals for the year is to reflect back on the past year. What went well? What did I accomplish? What were the best moments? I know a lot of us fall into the habit of setting goals and working hard on them for a few weeks and then completely forgetting them later. WRITE the goals down! I cannot stress this enough. When things are written down, they are more easily remembered. I also make sure they are written down in a few places, especially one I can actually see daily so that I know what I need to be working on.

Sometimes setting goals is an overwhelming process. We think there are so many things to work on and too many things to get done that we just forgo the goal setting process altogether. I found this template that I feel sums up a lot of different aspects. I like being able to categorize the goals I am setting so I know which aspect in my life I need to work on.
goals                                                                                                                      source
smart goals
Another great rule I follow is setting SMART goals.
S-specific- What are you actually working towards? What do you need to do to reach this goal? Exactly what do you want to accomplish?
M-measurable-How will you determine if this goal is met?
A- achievable- Is the goal you are setting achievable?
R-realistic-Will you actually be able to accomplish this goal?
T-timely- Set a time frame on when you would like this goal to be met. Push yourself

I have found myself setting unrealistic goals many times before. However when I follow this template, I am aware of what my specific goal is and what the time frame is. I am more likely to achieve my goal.

Goals help us reach our potential. They help us be the people we want to be and accomplish things we never thought we could imagine. New Year, New Goals, there is time to do the things in life that you want to.


Last Minute Gift Ideas


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Can you believe Christmas is only 2 days away? It amazes me how quickly this holiday season has flown by. Most of my Christmas shopping has been done for quite a while, but I still have a few last minute things to get. If you are anything like my family though, the Christmas shopping barely begun this weekend.

There are so many great deals leading up to Christmas and gift cards are a great option. So many great restaurants are giving away extra money when you buy a certain amount on a gift card. Gift cards make great stocking stuffers and every college student loves money for food.

Cheesecake Factory- spend $25.00 and get a free slice of cheesecake
Cafe Rio (certain days only)- spend $25.00 and get a free meal
Zupas (Utah)-spend $25.00 and get a $5.00 gift card or spend $50.00 and get $10.00
Chili’s- spend $50.00 and get $10.00
Olive Garden- spend $50.00 and get $10.00
Benihana-spend $50.00 and get $10.00
Jamba Juice- $25.00 and get a free small smoothie

The list goes on and on. If you have a restaurant in mind, make sure to check what great deals they might have on gift cards.

There are also a lot of stores offering free shipping and a great percent off.

American Eagle has free shipping on everything plus all jeans under $30.00
Nordstrom is also free shipping with a guarantee Christmas Eve delivery
Amazon also has free shipping by Christmas Eve with Prime

It is not too late to find great gifts for people!


$25 Target Gift Card Giveaway

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We are doing our first Christmas Giveaway for a chance to win a $25 Target Gift Card!!

It starts today (Friday, December 13) and goes until Thursday, December 19 at midnight.  We will be announcing the winner on our blog on Friday, December 20th!  The winner will be contacted by email and has one week to respond and claim prize.

All you have to do to enter is LIKE our Facebook page, and SHARE and COMMENT on our Facebook post to enter!

Good luck!

Oreo Cheesecake Bars


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Oreos and cheesecake are two great desserts. Combine them together and the combination is amazing. Cheesecake is always delicious, but it is often too rich and too large of a dessert to make for only three people. These bars were a perfect solution. They have that delicious cheesecake flavor, without the guilt factor of a whole slice of cheesecake. Plus, they are easy to share and people love them.

Oreo Cheesecake Bars
yield: 1 8×8 pan


For the crust:
23 Oreo cookies
2 tbsp. unsalted butter, melted

For the cheesecake:
12 oz. cream cheese, at room temperature
6 tbsp. sugar
6 tbsp. sour cream, at room temperature
½ tsp. vanilla extract
¼ tsp. salt
1 large egg plus 1 egg yolk
12 Oreo cookies, roughly chopped


Make the Crust:

Preheat the oven to 325˚ F and line an 8×8- inch baking dish with foil. Spray the foil with cooking spray for easy removal. Place the Oreos in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until the cookies are finely ground (if you don’t have a food processor, put them in a bag and roll them with a rolling pin. It worked great for me). Add in the melted butter and pulse until it is moistened. Transfer the mixture to the baking pan, and press the crumbs into an even layer on the bottom of the pan. Bake the crust for 10 minutes and set aside. Prepare the filling and keep the oven temperature where it is at.

Make the Filling:

Add the cream cheese to the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Beat on medium-high speed until light and smooth, roughly two minutes. Mix in the sugar until well combined, and then add sour cream, vanilla and salt. Beat in the egg and egg yolk on medium-high speed until incorporated, scraping down the bowl as needed. Stir in chopped oreos.

Pour the batter over the prepared crust, smoothing the top with a spatula. Bake for about 40 minutes, until the cheesecake is set around the edges but slightly wobbly in the center. Transfer pan to a wire cooking rack and let sit for about an hour at room temperature. Cover the pan and refrigerate until well chilled, about 3 hours.

To cut the bars, pull the cake from the pan by lifting the foil out of the pan. Place on cutting board and peel away the foil. Slice into the bars and clean the knife blade between each slice to keep the edges neat. Keep refrigerated until ready to serve.

This recipe can be easily converted to a 9×13 inch pan.

Source Annie’s Eats, originally from Beth Lipton

Ultimate Werewolf

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Do you ever run out of fun group games, or have too many people for the games you do have? One of our favorite games when we have friends over is Werewolf. This is the perfect game to play with large or few numbers and requires very few supplies.

Werewolf, which is similar to Mafia, has many versions, but of course I think ours is great because there are parts for everyone that really mix up the game.

In a game including 10 people here is how we split up the characters:

1 Narrator

3 Werewolves

2 Townspeople

1 Witch

1 Cupid

1 Hunter

1 Peeker (optional)

You can even add additional townspeople so that it makes it harder to guess the roles.

First: Tear up pieces of paper with the characters written on them. Place them in a hat or a cup and have everyone draw their roles.

Here’s how it’s played:

The game begins with a night phase. The narrator will tell everyone to go to sleep.

First and only in the first round Cupid will be told to open his or her eyes. He or she will then be told to pick one other person to fall in love with. The narrator will tap that person, then they will make contact and from then on they will partner up and protect each other. It doesn’t matter what the other person’s role is he/she will act in both roles, if both Cupids are alive at the end, they win the game, and if one dies during the game they both die. After they know who they are they are told to go back to sleep.

Second the werewolves will be told to open their eyes and make contact with each other. They will then silently choose one person they would like to kill off. After they have selected who dies they will go back to sleep.

Third the witch will be told to wake up. The witch has 2 potions during the game he or she can use. The first is to kill someone and the second is to save someone. The witch will be shown by the narrator who the werewolves selected to kill. If he/she chooses to save that person then they will give a thumbs up. If not they will give a thumb in the middle. Then they will choose if they want to kill someone, if they choose to they will point to that person and give a thumbs down. The witch can space out which potions he or she uses in each round but each of these potions can only be used once during the entire game.

While everyone’s eyes are still closed the narrator will then tap the person who was killed or in the case that someone was saved the narrator will just tell everyone to open their eyes. Everyone will then debate on who they believe is a werewolf and vote to kill someone off. After the person has been killed they will reveal who they are and the game will repeat minus the cupids waking up.

The hunter’s role comes into play if he/she is killed at any time during the game. If they are killed they get to choose one other person to die with them, it can be any other remaining player.

The peeker can peek at the time when the werewolves open their eyes. The only catch is if the werewolves see the peeker then they can point to him or her and the peeker will automatically die.

I hope you enjoy the game! It’s a really fun variation and a great way to mix things up!