Review on Artis dupe oval makeup brushes.

photogrid_1484003818894I received these oval makeup brushes at a discounted price for review.
Pros: they are the soft, fluffy bristles that feel like kittens caressing your face. The brush I used for liquid foundation provided a flawless appearance. These brushes are pretty good with powders & cream too. I really liked the tiniest long, thin brush, I used as liner with eye shadows. The smaller circle brushes I used for eye shadows worked great.
Cons: as you can see from the bottom photo, there are stray bristles or loose materials on the bigger oval brush. This didn’t affect the feel of the brush, but it does say something for the quality. Although, the handles were a beautiful rose-colored, the plastic handle felt flimsy, especially the larger ones when swiping, and sliding. Definitely, need to support it with index finger. They are not labeled, and there are no guidelines on the box, so we are left to figure out which brush should be used for what products.

Overall, I liked that I got to play with these. These have a learning curve as to how to properly use. Research on YouTube. These are one of the many Artis oval makeup brushes dupes. I would keep using some of the brushes from this 10-piece kit.

Here is the link on these particular oval makeup brushes
https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M265CPK?m=A24NL8QD8TS8RF&ref_=v_sp_detail_page

Food for the gods recipe

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Ingredients for Food for the gods

My Mom used to make this dessert occasionally during the Christmas season and I was craving them this year and it’s been a long time since my Mom made it so I asked my Mom for the recipe. This is a very rich dessert, so take note if you plan to make this.

There have been may requests for me to put up this recipe, and so here it is. And I had some gluten free flour, so I wanted to test it out in this recipe

Ingredients:

1 c. All purpose flour (used Cup4cup Gluten-free flour)

1 tsp. baking powder

1/4 tsp. salt

2 eggs

1 1/2 c. brown sugar

1 c. unsalted butter, melted

1 c. coarsely chopped walnuts

1 c. coarsely chopped Medjool dates

Directions:

Preheat oven to 300 F. Grease a 13 x 9x 2 inch pan and set aside.  In this case, I used silicone molds.  I did not have to grease them.

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Coarsely chop dates

Coarsely chop the walnuts, and dates.

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Used a food processor. Be careful to only pulse the as to not grind them too much. You want them to look like the far right. Coarsely chopped.

Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in a bowl.

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Beat eggs lightly in a separate bowl.

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Add sugar, butter, nuts, and dates.

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Fold in flour.

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Spread mixture on the greased pan (silicone molds).

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If using silicone molds, use a baking sheet tray underneath.

Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until a toothpick inserted comes out clean. (If baked in a greased baking dish).  Using smaller silicone molds, I baked them for approximately 20 minutes, until I saw that the center was dry and toothpick inserted in the center came out clean.  Unmold them from their respective mold/pan and then cut into bars (if using a pan).

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These hold up pretty long in the refrigerator, but they are so good, they probably won’t last long. Especially, in my “sweet-toothed” family.  I hope you enjoy these as much as I did.

** I received the Cup4cup gluten free flour as a sample for my honest review from Social Nature and I got to say, I was impressed with it.  I don’t think anyone noticed that it was gluten free.  I would definitely purchase this in the future if I need a gluten free flour for my baking.

Review of Cuisine Adventures Organic Fiesta Quinoa

I received this product for free from Social Nature in exchange for my honest review.

This was a difficult product to find in stores. None of my local stores had it and the only one that carried it was more than 10 miles away from me at Ralph’s. I called to make sure that particular store had it, at first, the person I spoke with said they didn’t have it. But, I called again the next day and asked to speak with a manager who made sure to look at the frozen meal section carefully and ensured me they had 8 SKU’s and described to me where I could find it.

So, I finally was able to get the product and evaluate it.

This product retails for $6.49 for 2 in a box. But it after all is organic, convenient, frozen meal. It comes in individually wrapped special plastic “Opti Pack” that easily opens. It is BPA-free, and creates less household waste than other leading frozen meals.

Heat it up in microwave according to directions. Place in a microwaveable safe dish for 3 minutes, mix it up, and heat again for another 2 minutes. Let rest for a bit before eating as it will be hot.

If you’re at all familiar with quinoa, the texture is an acquired texture. But I love it! The complexity of flavor is a party in my mouth. The ingredients consist of corn, kale, touch of cilantro & lime, brown rice, red quinoa, onions, edamame, red bell pepper, and garlic.

One meal serving definitely was filling, and satiating with 5 grams of fiber and 8 grams of protein. The product is vegan, USDA Organic, and non- GMO. It is a product of Canada.

Even though, I had some difficulties locating the product, overall it was worth it. This was nutritious, and delicious. I would purchase it in the future.

Review of SPLENDA Naturals Stevia Sweetener

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I received these SPLENDA Naturals Stevia Sweetener as samples for free from crowdtap and SPLENDA in exchange for my honest opinion.

I was pleasantly surprised that substituting these for sugar, I did not taste a bitter end note that I notice from other Stevia sweeteners.  It tasted just as sweet with no guilt, no added calories.  This is a great substitute for sugar in anything you wish to add it to.

I used them in my microwave brownie in a cup and it was delicious.  It was just as sweet.  I did not notice that sugar was missing at all.  Finally, a stevia sweetener I can use not just for my lemonade, but for other sweet, delectable things, such as desserts.Yum!

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Microwave Brownie in a Cup

2 Tbsp. Butter

3 packets SPLENDA Naturals Stevia (substitute for 2 Tbsp. Sugar)

1 Tbsp. Brown sugar (firmly packed)

1/2 tsp. Pure Vanilla Extract

Pinch of salt

1 egg

2 Tbsp. Buttermilk*

2 Tbsp. Flour

2 Tbsp. Unsweetened Cocoa Powder

1/2 tsp. Baking Powder

1/4 tsp. Baking Soda

*If using Regular milk, omit baking soda.

Optional: Add chocolate chips, mini marshmallows, caramel syrup, nuts, as toppings before microwaving.

Melt butter in microwave safe bowl. Add sugars, vanilla, salt, egg, buttermilk. Beat until everything is incorporated. Add remaining dry ingredients. Stir until well combined. Don’t over beat. Microwave for 45 seconds to 2 minutes, depending on microwave wattage. I cooked it for 65 seconds in 1000 watts microwave, it was still undercooked.

TIPS & TRICKS:

1. Try numerous times to hone in on exact cook time for your microwave.

2. Mix the batter in separate bowl, then transfer to microwave safe cup before microwaving.  For better presentation.

3. Use unsweetened baking cocoa, NOT hot cocoa mix.

This is a really good option for a fast dessert without using the oven. Especially for one or two people. 1 cup really is a good size serving. You can share with a loved one. Enjoy!!!