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Have yourself a “Sangria Sunday” – You Deserve It!

 

Sangria Sunday

Today is Sunday. A day meant for rest and relaxation, yet many people don’t take advantage of the day. They are too busy catching up on yard work, doing overtime at work or running around like crazy as if it was the middle of the week and not the weekend.

STOP! SLOW DOWN! You don’t always need to be on the GO! GO! GO! You CAN take some “me time” for yourself. In fact, I encourage it. Having time to yourself to rest, relax and unwind is not only good for your mental health, but also your physical health too. The constant running around and stressing over work and things that need to get done can reap havoc on your body. It can also do a number on your mental health too.

You need to take care of yourself, but inside and out. Taking a break from your every day stresses is GOOD for you. Even if it’s just for an hour. Let’s face it, the lawn is still going to need to be mowed, and you’ll still need to prepare for Sunday dinner, but taking an hour for yourself is NOT going to ruin your day. If anything it will revitalize you and give you more energy to accomplish all the things you need to get done.

[Yellow Tail] would like to encourage readers to enjoy a Sangria Sunday. It’s the perfect excuse to dedicate a little time doing something you enjoy, whether is a craft, hobby, taking a nap, chatting with an old friend, giving yourself a mani/pedi, taking a long bath with a glass of you favorite wine (or Sangria!), working in your garden… whatever makes you happy DO IT!

If you need a little inspiration to plan your Sangria Sunday, here are some recommendations from [Yellow Tail] that you might enjoy.

Find ways to “pamper you mind and soul”. Whether it’s through prayer, mediation, reading a good book - even if it means dancing around in your living room!

Here are some suggested books and songs to get you in the mood.

Pampering Your Mind

Pampering Your Soul

Happy is my favorite from the list. Seriously… it’s hard NOT to be happy when you hear that song. It always makes me want to dance too!

Create an “at home spa”. One of my favorite ways to relax and unwind is to give myself an at home spa treatment (usually my face and/or hair) while I lounge in a warm bubble bath, occasionally sipping my favorite beverage while in the tub. I like to light candles and play relaxing music too. Even if I have only 15 minutes to do this it’s so worth it.

Here are a few at home spa recipes to get you started.

Avocado Face Mask

Lip BalmHappy HandsScrub

I also love to toss bath bombs, Epsom salts and/or Mr. Bubbles in the tub.

You can Google more “at home spa recipes”. There are plenty of them available and most are super easy to make, just like the recipes listed above.

You should consider pampering your body by eating healthy. When your body feels good, you feel good. It’s OK to indulge in burgers and chips from time to time. You should pamper your body by eating healthy foods as often as you can. Make sure to drink plenty of water and get enough rest too.

Here are a couple of yummy recipes you might want to try to pamper your insides.

Salad

Quinoa BlendI’m so glad that spring is FINALLY here. I am looking forward to the abundance of fresh fruits and vegetables that will be available at the local farmers market and local farms. During the spring and summer months my family enjoys a lot of fresh produce. Mmm… I could go for a great, big bowl of a garden salad right now.

The best part about Sangria Sunday – SANGRIA!

Have you ever had Sangria before? It’s a popular drink in Spain and Portugal. It’s wine mixed with a lot of fresh fruits and another type of liquid such as seltzer, soda or brandy. It’s a very flavorful drink as you can imagine. Any Sangria I’ve ever had tends to taste more like the fruit than the wine or other liquid. It’s great for relaxing or for hanging out with friends and family.

[Yellow Tail] was kind enough to send me a bottle of their Sangria, along with a few other goodies, so I can have my own Sangria Sunday. One of the items is a candle that smells like Sangria. It smells SO GOOD! I wish I had more of these candles. They smell amazing.

Yello Tail Logo

Dear [Yellow Tail]… please consider selling your Sangria candles. They smell awesome! I would stock up on them and buy them as gifts. They smell THAT GOOD.

As tempted as I am to enjoy a glass of Sangria, I am going to hold off and wait until I see my cousin in a few weeks. My Sangria Sunday will actually be a Sangria Saturday, but that’s OK with me. Any time can be Sangria time. LOL!

I don’t get to see my cousin that often. She’s my dearest friend and I miss her terribly.

Once she came down for an overnight visit. She brought a bottle of wine and she and I sat in our dining room reminiscing and laughing the whole night (and finishing up the bottle of wine she brought). It was a great visit and I had a lot of fun. I want to re-create that night when I see her in a few weeks. This time I’ll bring the Sangria.

She lives on a lake and I think it would be wonderful to sit on her Adirondack chairs, overlooking the lake, watching the sun go down, sharing stories, creating new memories and sipping on a glass of [Yellow Tail] Sangria. I’m looking forward to that. I can even picture it in my mind.

Maybe we’ll even make this recipe.

Sangria

Have you been inspired to create your own Sangria Sunday? If so, what do you plan on doing? What will you do with your “me time”?

Have you ever drank Sangria before? If so, what do you think about the drink? Have you ever tried [Yellow Tail] Sangria or any other [Yellow Tail] beverage?

Feel free to share your thoughts. I always love to hear from my readers.

Adirondack chair

Kimberly

*I was not compensated for this post. I received a free sample and other goodies in exchange for my participation and to review. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. Please drink responsibly.

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Pirate’s Booty® Partners with Fox’s RIO 2 for a Booty Shakin’ Good Time (giveaway ends 4/20/14)

 

RIO 2

RIO 2 has flown into theaters TODAY, April 11, 2014. It stars the voice talents of Anne Hathaway, Jesse Eisenberg, Will i am,
Jemaine Clement, Tracy Morgan, Leslie Mann, George Lopez, Rodrigo Santoro, Andy Garcia, Rita Moreno, Natalie Morales, Kristin Chenoweth, and Jamie Foxx.

The entire cast of the animated smash RIO returns in RIO 2, and they are joined by a new flock of top actors and musical talents. Rich with grandeur, character, color and music, RIO 2 finds Jewel (Anne Hathaway), Blu (Jesse Eisenberg) and their three kids leaving their domesticated life in that magical city for a journey to the Amazon. They encounter a menagerie of characters who are born to be wild, voiced by Oscar nominee Andy Garcia, Oscar/Emmy/Tony-winner Rita Moreno, Grammy winner Bruno Mars, and Tony winner Kristin Chenoweth.

Here is a clip from the film.

 

It looks cute.

In celebration of the film’s release, Pirate’s Booty has partnered with Fox. Pirate’s Booty has created a limited edition 7 ounce package of their yummy Aged White Cheddar flavored Pirates Booty featuring images from RIO 2.

Seven ounces doesn’t sound like much but trust me, these are really big bags. It takes my whole family of four – including a teenage boy – to devour an entire package.

Pirates Booty Aged White Cheddar are backed rice and corn “puffs” flavored in aged white cheddar. They contain no artificial colors, flavors or preservatives. They are also Gluten free which I know pleases a lot of people, most especially those sensitive to Gluten.

Pirates Booty are oh-so-good too! They are a light weight and airy snack treat that are packed with flavor.

Get hooked logo

In addition to the limited edition Pirates Booty RIO 2 bags, Pirates Booty is also holding a contest. The national Shake Your Booty contest ends on April 25, 2014 so there is still plenty of time for you to enter.

Entering is easy. Simply take a photo or video of you and/or your family showcasing their best dance moves with a bag of Pirate’s Booty. Then upload the photo or video on the Pirate’s Booty Facebook page, www.Facebook.com/PiratesBooty.

Photo submissions provides you with entry into the weekly contest. If you submit a video is provides you an entry into the Grand Prize contest.

The weekly winners will win a year supply of Pirates Booty, any variety (approx. value $288).

The Grand Prize winner will win a Bahamas Adventure Cruise (approx. value $4,995).

For more information or contest rules please visit www.PiratesBooty.com/RIO2.

For more information about Pirates Booty visit www.PiratesBooty.com. You can also check them out on Facebo0k (linked above) and Twitter (@PiratesBooty).

Pirates Booty RIO 2

Pirates Booty wants to encourage you to Shake Your Booty by offering to give a lucky reader a case of Pirates Booty in the limited edition RIO 2 bags (12 bags). Thank you Pirates Booty.

This giveaway is open to U.S. residents only and will end on April 20, 2014 at 11:59 PM (EST). The winner will be chosen at random using a random number generator from all eligible entries. The winner will be notified via e-mail and will have three days to reply or a new winner will be chosen in their place.

To enter please comment on this post and tell me why you would love to win a case of Pirates Booty?

For extra entries you can use the Rafflecopter widget (below) but you must complete the initial entry requirement (I do check) or the additional entries won’t qualify. Extra entries are optional.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Kimberly

*I received a case of Pirates Booty in exchange for my participation. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way. Pirates Booty will be providing the prize.

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Thanks Domino and C&H for sweetening my every day

 

Sugar

Do you use sugar in the morning, or any time throughout the day? I don’t use sugar for my coffee, but I do like a sprinkle of sugar with my tea (sugar and milk or a squirt of lemon juice). I also like to sprinkle a little sugar on my pancakes (instead of syrup I use butter and sugar). I also enjoy using brown sugar in recipes except I hate using brown sugar because no sooner to I purchase it that it turns into a brick and it’s unusable.

I tend to use sugar packets. I don’t need A LOT of sugar so buying a big bag is not necessary. Ideally I would rather just pour in what I need or sprinkle what I need on top rather than dig out the sugar packets.

Thanks to Domino and C&H my days are a bit sweeter thanks to their convenient, flip top, easy-t0-pour sugar bottles.

Domino is the brand known on the East coast. The same brand is known as C&H on the West coast.

DM-flip top-Superfine

The brand has introduced two different sugars.

  • Domino Quick Dissolve Superfine Sugar
  • Domino Pourable Light Brown Sugar (known as C&H Pourable Golden Brown Sugar in the West coast).

Each sugar comes in an attractive looking hourglass-shaped canister. The lid pops open with just a press of the finger and snaps closed when not in use.

You can use the bottle to pour our as much sugar as you need or simply to sprinkle a little sugar on top. I have used the sugar both ways.

It also makes it easier to measure out how much you need to use for a recipe. You can pour the sugar in a measuring cup. You don’t have to scoop it out of a larger container.

The Quick Dissolve Superfine Sugars are smaller than regular granulated sugar (the kind you’d find in a sugar packet). It’s the same sugar – only the grains are ground down smaller. Being smaller in size means they dissolve a lot quicker too.

Have you ever sweetened a drink and then take a mouthful only to find that the sugar didn’t fully dissolve and you have a mouth full of sugar pieces? Eww! I’ve had that happen to me plenty of times, especially making ice tea from scratch. With the Quick Dissolve Superfine sugar you don’t have to worry about that problem. The sugar quickly.

DM-flip top-Brown

My favorite sugar is the new Domino/C&H brown sugar. It comes in the same hourglass-shaped canister with the pop open and snap close lid.

Unlike other brown sugars this one doesn’t turn into a brick! It doesn’t get hard. It’s just a pourable on the last day you use it as the first day. Yeah! Now I can sprinkle brown sugar on my pancakes, French toast, oatmeal and even my beverages. The brown sugar flowers just as easily as the white sugar does.

I might add that the label on the canisters peels off. What is underneath is simply clear plastic. That is how I have both of my canisters. It also helps me to see how much is left so I know when to replace it.

Both the Domino and C&H sugars should be found on a store shelf near you. They started to roll out last month. If they are not at your grocer yet they should be soon.

For more information and great recipes check out www.DominoSugar.com. There is also a product locator on their site if you wish to find either sugar near you.

You can also check out www.CHSugar.com. Both sites are nearly identical.

Be sure to check out your brand on the social media sites (the links are found on the main websites).

ch-flip-top-press-release

Kimberly

*I received free product samples in order to do this review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way.

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Yummy New Products from Nature Valley

 

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As mom and wife I am always on the look out for “better-for-you” snacking options. I don’t mind my kids (or hubby) indulging in some candy, chips and other types of “junk foods” from time to time but it has to be within reason. After all, kids will be kids and they want to enjoy the same foods their peers are eating.

Ideally I would like my family to enjoy treats that are made with whole grains, real ingredients ideally things like protein, vitamins and minerals whenever possible.

Natural Valley has some new products on the market that not only please my family but also me, as a mom. One product I hide from my family so they didn’t eat them all up on me. :-)

These products can be enjoyed as an on-the-go breakfast, along side a breakfast (such as eggs or oatmeal) or as a snack or after school meal.

NV Breakfast Biscuit Blueberry

Nature Valley Breakfast Biscuits are a great way to start the day and help make mornings easier and more delicious. Made with real blueberries and honey, Nature Valley Breakfast Biscuits provide a wonderful combination of convenience, great taste and breakfast satisfaction, offering more than 26 grams of whole grain in each four-biscuit serving. Available in two delicious varieties – Blueberry and Honey. SRP: $3.89.

There are a few breakfast bar-type products on the market. One brand (which I won’t mention) my kids used to ask me to buy all the time. They are good but they only give you two small biscuits per package. The Nature Valley breakfast biscuits have FOUR generously sized biscuits in each individually wrapped package.

I prefer my kids eat an actual breakfast such as eggs and toast or oatmeal. Sadly that is not always the case. Sometimes they run late or neglect to set the alarm and end up have to dash out of the house before they miss the bus. Having these on hand are great for such occasions.

These are the ones that I hide some of the packages from my family because I knew they would gobble them all up before I had a chance to. I did let my kids and husband enjoy some of the packages.

My daughter took these to school with her to hold her over until lunch time. She’s in high school and they start their day early. She has a late lunch and tells me that her tummy grumbles during class. To prevent this she likes to bring along a little something like a granola bar to hold her over until lunch time. She loved these biscuits, not only because they taste great (we had both varieties) but also because she said they held her over until lunch time.

My son is a teenager too and teenage boys are infamous for their voracious appetites. One package of these biscuits after school and an apple or orange was enough to hold him over until dinner time.

Both of my kids enjoyed these as snacks too (I purchased more of these after the samples I received).

NV Greek Yogurt Protein Bar_Mixed Berry

Nature Valley Greek Yogurt Protein Bars are a delicious, protein snack option perfect for an active lifestyle, offering a great source of protein while you are on-the-go. Made with real fruit, crunchy peanut and almond pieces, the bars offer 10 grams of protein per serving. Available in two fruit varieties – Mixed Berry and Strawberry. SRP: $4.19.

Mmm…. these are GOOD! They have it all – a bit of crunch, sweetness from the fruit and yogurt and the creaminess of the yogurt. They are rich and satisfying. If you find yourself craving something sweet, don’t reach for cookies or cake – grab one of these yogurt bars instead. Calories wise they might be the same but cookies or cake are not going to provide you with 10 grams of protein.

These bars were gone quickly in my home. Both of my kids LOVE these (my husband doesn’t like yogurt and wouldn’t even try one – his loss. LOL). They enjoyed these as a snack, with their school lunch and alone side breakfast.

Unlike other fruity granola bars, I could actually taste the sweet fruity flavor, especially the strawberry flavored one.

I haven’t had a chance to look yet but I am hoping that Costco sells these in bulk packages. These come 5 bars per box. My kids would go through a box every other day.

Final NVPG Cranberry Almond

Nature Valley Protein Granola in Cranberry Almond is a loose, bagged granola with energy from whole grain to keep you going. Made with natural ingredients, including real almonds and sweetened cranberry pieces, each serving contains 10 grams of protein and at least 22 grams of whole grain (48 grams of whole grain recommended daily). Also available in two additional varieties, Oats ‘n Honey and Oats ‘n Dark Chocolate, Nature Valley Protein Granola can be found in the granola aisle at retailers nationwide for an SRP of $4.49.

This is a very flexible product. It can be enjoyed “as is”, mixed in with other foods or enjoyed as a “topping”. My kids and I used it on top of oatmeal, yogurt, cereal and ice cream. Why top ice cream with candy when you can get the same sweetness and crunchiness, but with less fat and calories and 10 grams of protein. Especially with the Oats ‘n Dark Chocolate variety.

This is just as good “as is”. I would pour a little in my hand and munch on it whenever I was in the mood for a snack or treat. It’s crunch and sweet and it’s a great way to satisfy your urge to raid the fridge.

I haven’t tried it yet but there is a recipe for Individual Microwave Apple Crisps that uses the Cranberry Almond granola that looks and sounds SO GOOD.

83b4c19f-4660-4680-8075-cee55d5b57b1

There are several recipes on the Betty Crocker website that use the Nature Valley Protein Granola (both varieties) including cheesecake squares and no back Thumbprint Cookie.

For more information about these or other Nature Valley products visit www.NatureValley.com. You can also check out the brand on the various social media outlets.

Have you tried any of these products yet? If so, what did you think about it? I always love to hear from my readers.

logo

Kimberly

*I received free product samples in order to do this review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way.

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An island escape… at the touch of a button?

 

island coconut bag and kcup

This past winter has been horrible. I am so over snow! Normally I don’t mind the snow or the cold but this past winter has been the exception. It was just awful.

Normally I don’t like the heat but for the past few months I have been looking forward to warmer weather. Ideally I would LOVE to take a tropical escape. My husband and I never went on a honeymoon. The idea of just the two of us taking off to some exotic destination sounds wonderful.

Imagine if you could press a button and be transported through time and space to another place? Star Trek had the right idea with their teleportation device. I wish I could simply say “Beam me up Scotty” and get whisked away some place wonderful.

Teleportation devices don’t exist (yet!) but you can get a little bit of island life with the help of Keurig and Green Mountain. Your island escape is as simple as a press of a button.

Green Mountain Coffee has introduced a special limited edition K-cup pack that has just been released just in time for the sunny days (yeah!) and tropical nights to come. The new flavor is called Green Mountain Coffee Island Coconut.

Transport your senses to the tropics with this well-balanced coffee featuring a delicate coconut flavor, just in time for spring and summer. This guilt-free seasonal treat captures the lush aroma of fruity, exotic coconut and blends it with the subtle sweetness of a light-roast coffee. Made from Fair Trade Certified™ and 100% Arabica coffee beans.

I like coconut. My family is not so keen about coconut. That is fine with me. That means that all the Mounds and Almond Joy candies my kids receiving during Halloween were all mine. LOL!

SAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES

I especially LOVE roasted coconut. I can eat it “as is”. It doesn’t need to on top of anything.

Green Mountain Coffee was kind enough to send me some of their limited edition Island Coconut coffee for me to review. In addition they sent me a Keurig Elite K-Cup brewer to make my Island Coconut K-cup packs with.

I couldn’t wait to try the Island Coconut coffee. I always use creamer and a touch of sugar with my coffee – or Fat Free French Vanilla. I tried the coffee both ways.

The coconut flavor is not too light and not too bold. It’s just right. When you add in some French Vanilla creamer it gives the coffee a bit of a sweet creamy flavor, kind of like a coconut cream flavor.

My daughter is not too keen about coconut, but, she willingly tried the coffee (she taken some sips of my coffee). She liked it. She prefers it with the French Vanilla creamer over the regular creamer.

I’m not sure how the coffee tastes black with no sugar. I don’t like my coffee that way. I would suspect that the coconut flavor would really “burst” if you drank the coffee “as is” and not loaded with creams and/or sugars.

GMC_logo_3color_small

I would say this is a medium strength coffee. It has a nice balance between the coconut and coffee flavors.

What I really like about this coffee is that the coconut flavor doesn’t taste artificial. I have had cookies and cakes made with coconut extracts and flavoring and you can taste that it’s not the real thing. This coffee tastes like it was made with a coconut freshly cut from the tree. Or as if you splashed a bit of coconut “juice” into your cup of coffee.

Whether you are a fan of coconut, or enjoy flavored coffees, the limited edition Island Coconut coffee is worth checking out. But hurry! It’s only available for a limited time. It’s available from March 24th until supplies last.

If you’d like to add a bit more of an “exotic flavor” to your coffee why not try one of the colorful Keurig Elite K-Cup brewers. They are available in Black, Rhubarb, Patriot Blue and Coconut White.

Green Mountain Coffee sent me one of their Coconut White Keurig Elite K-Cup brewers along with the Island Coconut K-cup packs. Together they are the perfect combination.

I LOVE having the Coconut White brewer. I’ve only ever had black Keurig brewers. They are fine but I am really enjoying how wonderful the Coconut White brewer looks on my counter top. It really brightens things up. After a dark and gloomy winter it’s nice to have something bright and cheery to greet me in morning.

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  • The always ready brewer can brew hot water in under one minute.
  • Enjoy both hot and brew over ice beverages
  • Removable 48 ounce water reservoir which allows you to brew multiple cups before you have to refill the reservoir again.
  • The brewer has Quiet Brew Technology which means it’s quiet and won’t wake up the whole house when you use it.
  • All parts that come in contact with the water are BPA Free
  • Gives you three cup sizes to choose from including room for your travel mugs.
  • Includes a removable drip tray for easy cleaning.
  • The brewer comes with a charcoal filter to provide you with the best water for your drinking pleasure.

Not only does this brewer have all the “bells and whistles” you would want, but the brewer is attractive looking. It’s not an “eye sore” on your counter top.

Whether you are in the market for a new brewer, or looking to add a splash of color to your counter top, the Keurig Elite K-Cup Brewer is an excellent choice.

For more information about the Island Coconut K-cup packs or other beverage varieties visit www.GreenMountainCoffee.com. You can also find information there about the Keurig Elite K-Cup Brewer.

You can also follow Keurig Facebook and Twitter as well as Green Mountain Coffee on Facebook and Twitter.

What do you think about the beautiful Keurig Elite K-Cup Brewer in Coconut White? Have you tried the Island Coconut flavor yet? Feel free to share your thoughts.

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Kimberly

*I received free product samples in order to do this review. There was no compensation. The opinions expressed are my own and not influenced in any way.

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“Faux” recipes for April Fool’s Day from FamilyFun

 

April Fool's Day

April Fool’s Day is tomorrow. Do you enjoy pulling pranks on your family and friends? My husband and I used to love to pull pranks on our kids when they were younger. Now that they are teenagers we have to worry about what prank they are going to play on us. LOL!

One of my favorite magazines is FamilyFun Magazine. I subscribed to it when my daughter was an infant (she’ll be 17 soon) and only cancelled my subscription a few years ago. I still enjoy the craft and recipes idea very much. That is why I have their site bookmarked on my computer.

FamilyFun Magazine has two “faux” recipes to celebrate April’s Fool’s Day in good taste.

FamilyFun’s “faux cookie dough dip” has the texture and flavor of homemade cookie dough, but it’s actually a dip in disguise. Also be sure to try the “tease cheese platter” where cookies and candy chews stand in for the traditional savory snack.

Fake Cookie Dough

Faux cookie dough dip

Ingredients:

Chickpeas

Brown sugar

Peanut butter

Oats

Milk

Vanilla

Salt

Baking soda

Chocolate chips

Apple slices

Directions:

In a food processor, blend 11/2 cups chickpeas, 6 tablespoons brown sugar, 1/4 cup peanut butter (we used a natural, unsweetened variety), 3 tablespoons oats, 1 tablespoon milk, 2 teaspoons vanilla, and 1/8 teaspoon each salt and baking soda. Fold in 1/3 cup chocolate chips. Serve with apple slices or other fresh fruit. When snack time is over, tell your kids they are now full of beans!

Fake Cheese Platter

Tease cheese platter

Ingredients:

Vanilla sandwich cookies

Sugar Sprinkles

Fruit chews

Directions:

To make the crackers, pull apart several vanilla sandwich cookies. Leave the filling intact and scatter green sugar sprinkles on half the pieces. Scrape away any filling from the others. For the cheese, soften white and orange fruit chews (we used Tootsie Fruit Rolls) in the microwave for a few seconds, then shape into cubes or roll the candy flat and use a knife to trim it into rectangles. Form the holes with a small cookie cutter or piping tip.

What do you think about these recipes? Do you think you are going to try them with your kids or grandchildren?

What is the best prank you ever pulled on April Fool’s day? Feel free to share your stories.

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Kimberly

*I was not compensated for this post. I posted this, with permission, for the enjoyment of my site readers. The opinions expressed are my own unless otherwise noted.

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