This month we are making cold brew!! It is truly the best way to enhance all of the flavors in your coffee and it makes a robust-tasting, smooth-drinking, overall-delicious coffee drink.
It makes your life easier because you save money! Store-bought cold brew is pricey and going to a coffeeshop daily is even more spendy. Making your own cold brew saves you money whether it’s in the grocery line or coffeeshop line AND you don’t need to leave the house to make it. Just pour it in your favorite tumbler, flavor, and go!
This month’s small business spotlight is so fun because the owner is my cousin Nate!! He started this business several years ago and I was so excited for him! But as someone who has terrible eyesight requiring glasses all the time (and contacts drying my eyes out), I was never able to reasonably get a pair. WELL I got lasik eye surgery this past October, and can finally enjoy allthesunglasses and my first pair of FLTRs are finally heading my way!
Ok, so what are they anyway?! Nate’s answers to my questions required zero edits on my part, so enjoy! In his own words:
Aloha! I’m Nate Pruszinske, I live in Honolulu, Hawaii, and I started a sunglasses company called FLTR Glasses! I started my business back in college because of an idea that I had which would be to bring Instagram filters to real life – using sunglass lenses! I graduated in Mechanical Engineering and have always enjoyed mixing my technical knowledge with my creative side, so I decided to start FLTR! I knew the idea had potential, as social media and photo filters were very popular at the time, and sunglasses always seemed to be… well… boring! Gray lenses might darken your view, but what if I could make something that would enhance the colors of the outdoors? As someone who’s always been artistic, I see my sunglasses as individual pieces of art that I love to share with other people!
My favorite part about starting a sunglasses company has been the people I get to work with! Selling a clothing accessory means you have to take lots of pictures with people, and living in Hawaii has been the perfect place to meet people and get photos in some really beautiful places! We’ll often meet up with people on mountain ridges, beaches, and waterfalls, and it feels like we’re just having more fun than we are doing work! And most of my team are friends from the Hawaiian Student Entrepreneur club at University of Hawaii, Manoa. Together we get to have a lot of fun working on the company!
Our Aloha lens is our customer favorite, as it makes the skies bluer, and the earth warmer! I hear from a lot of customers that they love wearing them both on sunny days and when it’s cloudy, because it always makes the day seem more cheerful! Actually, some people have even said FLTRs have helped cure their seasonal depression! When it’s fall and all the colors outside are more gray and brown than green and blue, FLTRs help to warm things up! It’s always encouraging to hear stories like that from our customers.
We are actually launching our new frames/lenses on June 20th, the first day of summer! As I think we’re all ready to return to our regular lives post-pandemic, we want Summer 2021 to be something really special! If you’re interested in getting a pair, or would like to see our other lenses and frames, you can go to our website at www.FLTRglasses.com, or follow us on Instagram HERE and Facebook @FLTRglasses! We small businesses truly appreciate every bit of support, and are thankful for Andrea and her support as well! Please feel free to use code HAPPYDESIGNS on all our current models of FLTRs for 20% off!
Our Mom mug is simple but holds so much value. Those 3 little letters, imprinted on the sage marbled mug, contain the most important title there is. It’s been said that the hand that rocks the cradle is the the hand that rules the world (poem here, and candle mug here), and that is absolutely true. A mother’s influence, care, and love for her child and in their life is unmatched. Whether you catch her on hard+exhausting days or calm+peaceful days, her love for being a mother and for her kids runs deep and strong no matter how she feels in the moment.
I know of no other creature in our world that is more protective than a mama bear to her cubs. Whether a literal bear in the wild or us “mama bears” in our concrete jungles. We protect those kiddos with everything in us and would do anything to be sure they’re safe from harm.
The mom mug represents all of the above. It’s sweet caffeine after sleepless nights, hot cocoa when curled up for a movie with our kiddos, and yet another reheated beverage. It’s a reminder of our great calling and most important title. The pride of showing up everyday and doing our best, loving on our kids, teaching them right from wrong and pointing them to the Lord.
This month’s small business spotlight is someone near and dear to my heart. I met Karla when we were both in an online business class and we connected over the possibility (and then reality) of using her candles and my mugs to create candle mugs.
Karla and her husband Spencer run their business with so much heart, and I’m super excited for you to learn more about it, from them, in their own words.
We’re Karla & Spencer, a husband & wife team based in the beautiful Central Coast in California. We have a two-year-old girl and a two week old baby boy.
We run The Mayan Collective. Karla is a photographer and an aspiring nursing student from Guatemala. Spencer is a registered nurse from Ohio. We both have the passion to help and serve others. We donate 20% of our proceeds to help people in Guatemala.
We started making “thank you candles” for Karla’s photography clients. She has always thought that giving a handmade gift to her clients showed appreciation to them for choosing her as a photographer. The business has continued to grow since then, with more scents and new products added.
Our favorite part of our business is getting to know our customers. Many of them have become our friends and we have never met them. Our customers love that fact that we make clean products and that we donate part of our proceeds to help children in small villages. Many of our customers have even given direct donations for some kids that are in need to basic items (such as shoes, clothes, food).
This is Andrea talking now: I’m sure you’ll just LOVE the Mayan Collective. Their candles are made with soy wax which is so much safer for you. Their candles contain no carcinogens, toxins or pollutants which means that the candles are less likely to trigger allergies. Soy wax also burns cooler which means that you can enjoy it for 30%-50% longer than a paraffin candle. Not to mention, the candles smell FANTASTIC so that alone is a huge win! You will love adding these to your decor.
You can find The Mayan Collective on instagram HERE or visiting their website by clicking HERE. Use code mama15 for 15% off your purchase.
Tacos are probably THE MOST family friendly food out there (ok ok it’s tied with pizza and spaghetti). We found ourselves eating tacos weekly, and I was curious if there was a way to stretch the meat and while hiding some veggies in there. Seeing as I’m writing a blog post about it, it’s safe to say I totally found an answer to this dilemma.
All you need is a pound of ground beef, a can of refried beans, and a box of mushrooms.
It’s worth mentioning that I am NOT a mushroom fan. But I don’t even notice they’re in here. They completely blend in with the meat and are such small flecks, that texture is a non-issue as well. No one in your family will notice them, I PROMISE.
The beans help hold the mixture together as well, resulting is less meat falling willy-nilly out of the shell. Mom win!
This recipe makes your life easier because you can make 1 pound of hamburger last longer while eating more vegetables, and then freeze half so all you need to do next time is thaw and heat. We are a family of 5 and half of this mixture is perfect for us, so we can save half for next time.
Here’s what you do!!
Grab 1 pound of ground beef, 1 can of refried beans, and 1 box of mushrooms.
Wash, then pulse the mushrooms in your food processor until they are finely diced.
Start browning your ground beef. While it’s still kind of red, add the mushrooms and continue cooking.
Add whatever taco seasonings you love (the equivalent of 2 packets), stir to incorporate and make sure the meat is cooked through.See the little mushrooms in there? 🧐
Add the can of refried beans. Stir until warmed through.
Put it on a shell, add your favorite toppings and enjoy!!
This is so darn easy and yummy! Give it a try and I can’t wait to hear what you think.
Finish off your supper with a cozy after-dinner drink in your favorite mug!
Easy, filling, veggie-packed Taco Meat:
1 pound of ground beef
1 can of refried beans
1 box of mushrooms
2 packets of taco seasoning
1. Wash, then pulse the mushrooms in your food processor until they are finely diced.
2. Start browning your ground beef. While it’s still kind of red, add the mushrooms and continue cooking.
3. Add whatever taco seasonings you love (the equivalent of 2 packets), stir to incorporate and make sure the meat is cooked through.
4. Add the can of refried beans. Stir until warmed through.
5. Put it on a shell, add your favorite toppings and enjoy!!
What do you get for the woman who gave you LIFE?! Or your best mom-friend, mother figure, etc! Sometimes we look see the same items over and over…browsing the rows at Target for something that’s completely HER. This year, consider shopping small. We’ve got you covered with several women-owned small businesses across the United States. They each hand-picked a product for this guide. You’ll find traditional and non-traditional gifts – plenty of things for your mama (and yourself!).
13 Thoughtful Mother’s Day Gifts
Hope and Happy Designs is my online shop in Northern Minnesota and we specialize in hope-filled and happy mugs. Our goal is to bring happiness to your day and your mind focused on what matters most. This ceramic mom mug is a sage green 15oz marbled camping mug. It’s cozy while proudly displaying your most important title.
Use code HEYTAKE10 for 10% off your order. Order by May 2nd for Mother’s Day.
The Mayan Collective is owned and run by Karla: A mom of two little ones: 22 months and 1 week old, wife, candle-maker, and photographer. As a mom, she wants the best for her kids. This is why she creates products that are chemical free: to cherish moms with a clean candle and a beautiful label that reminds them how amazing they are. The Mayan Collective also donates a percentage of their profit to help kids in Guatemala.
Coupon code: MAMA21. Order by May 2nd for Mother’s Day.
Modern Maykes was started in November of 2020 and is owned by the sis-in-law team of Kestri and Rachel May! Modern Maykes sells custom birth month flower tees and sweatshirts (and more!) that are a perfect sentimental gift for all of the women in your lives. Each month has a birth flower — customize your shirt with your kids, grandkids, besties, new babies, or your own birth flower! So many options! Their shirts are screen printed so the flower design lasts!
Coupon code : HELLO10 for 10% off. Order by April 25 for Mother’s Day.
Glory Collective is a small business in Nebraska that works directly with artisans to bring their talently crafted, one-of-a-kind home goods to you! Each purchase helps an artisan to earn a sustainable income. Refugee Candles are hand poured in Nebraska by women refugees transitioning into the workforce and learning English! They are made with cosmetic grade soy wax, coconut oil, avocado oil, essential oils, and vitamin E. Each candle is signed by the woman who crafted it for you.
Simply Loved Designs creates coloring books, pages and artwork to help you share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with your kids through coloring. Relax as you color by yourself or with your kids and remember that you are a child of God. This book is perfect for all ages and makes a perfect gift for the moms in your life. Each single sided page features a line from the song and beautifully crafted illustrations, designed to bring peace and joy as they are colored.
Use code MOTHERSDAY for 10% off your order.Order by May 3rd for Mother’s Day.
Fresco Chocolate makes pure, dark chocolate and provides gifts that are as sweet as your Mom! They use three ingredients in their chocolate bars: cocoa beans, cane sugar and cocoa butter. They’ve added two special bundles for Mother’s Day to their gift collection: Bark + Brittle Bundle (pictured above) & Sweet Raspberry Bundle. Be sure to read all about them when you click the link. Hand-dipped marshmallows, freeze-dried raspberries, etc. You will not be disappointed!
Shop the bundles + other chocolate gifts by clicking HERE.
Find Fresco Chocolate on Facebook by clicking HERE.
Discount Code: HOPEANDHAPPY10. Order by May 3rd for Mother’s Day.
My4tees is owned by Amy: cancer survivor and California resident. She specializes in custom cancer apparel to give hope & courage to cancer warriors. They also design & sell apparel for holidays and special occasions. This mama shirt is super soft while being comfortable and cute for everyday wear to celebrate being a mom. It’s available in heather raspberry or black – the perfect treat for moms!
Grimm’s Gardens is a family-owned business in rural NE Kansas that ships garden center and nursery items to you, giving your home a special touch of real living green. You get plants right to your door, perfectly packed in a brown box. Pictured here is Calamint, a perennial with light lavender and white flowers, that grows densely with a nice full appearance with leaves that have a nice fragrance.
Use code HOPE&HAPPY10 for $10 off your $75 order. Order by May 2nd for Mother’s Day.
Lemon Drops & Lilies is a home and holiday decor Shoppe focused on helping moms find great products and inspiration for simple ways to create a home of beauty, faith, celebration and family connection. Family is Mom’s number one favorite thing, so why not give her a beautiful and cozy lumbar pillow cover with the hand lettering to show it! It’s will look great on a sofa, her favorite chair, in a decorative basket, or on her bed. It’s made of high quality 100% organic cotton and is screen printed so the printing will not crack. The neutral color means it will go great with any color scheme.
Use the code MOTHER for 15% off this pillow cover through the end of April.
nuJo is ‘all the things’ we need as Moms…that one thing we can do for ourselves in the midst of tending to everyone else. nuJo is gluten free & caffeine free, plant based and 100 organic with 6 simple ingredients. It comes in convenient single serve, individually packaged brewbags, 100% compostable and no plastics- for steeping on the go like a tea…or use the grind in coffee pot at home as you would coffee to follow that same routine with none of the upset tummy!
Use code ‘HAPPY20’ for 20% off NuJo grind or brewbags through Mothers Day! Order by May 4th for Mother’s Day.
Mother’s Day Candle Mug is a collaboration with Hope and Happy Designs and The Mayan Collective. This is a white 14oz ceramic matte mug with “mama” printed on the back side and a part of the poem by William Ross Wallace printed on the front. Click the link below to see the listing and both sides of the mug. It is filled with high-quality soy wax and a wooden wick, scented with the following notes: Top: Bergamot, Grapefruit Middle: Orange, Green Leaves, Neroli Base: Cedar. This is the perfect 2-in-1 gift that you’ll enjoy for a long time.
Ashley Dow Handmade is run by Ashley, a stay-at-home-mom to three little girlies with a love for crafting! What started as a calligraphy hobby turned into a full-blown Etsy shop full of goodies she loves to create from her home office, including baby blankets & lovey’s, stamped jewelry, beaded stretch bracelets, and rosary guides. Mother’s Day is the perfect time to get quality 14k gold-filled necklaces and bracelets so you: mamas, grandmas, and all the mother figures in your life can embrace the important rolls you have for your children. (Also available in rose gold filled and sterling silver)
Coupon Code: MOTHERS15 (good for 15% off stamped necklaces and beaded bracelets. Expires May 3rd). Order by May 3rd for Mother’s Day.
Steele Your Heart Photography began in the early 2000’s. In Amy’s own words: as a mom of three young children, there was nothing I wanted more than to capture the day-to-day activities of my little ones. After investing a DSLR camera, I was so excited but quickly disappointed when my results weren’t what I wanted them to be. That is what led me down my path to learning photography. I spent countless hours reading, researching, and trying different methods and techniques. This course is a result of those tried and true efforts, plus 15 years in the photography business since. Rock Your DSLR is an online photography course designed to teach you how to take your DSLR Camera off auto and to start taking consistent, creative, amazing photographs. This course is designed for ANYONE that owns a DSLR camera! You’ve spent the money to get a good camera, but what good is it if you aren’t using it to its full potential?? The content in this course is what I use day in and day out, whether I’m photographing my own kids or a client’s family. I include the basics as well as advanced techniques.
Follow Steele Your Heart Photography on Instagram HERE
Use code MOTHERSDAY for $50 off through May 31st
Thank you so much for shopping small and supporting these small businesses. We truly do a happy dance each time an order comes through and we appreciate everyone that takes the time to shop with us. We can’t wait to see what you pick out!
April’s small business spotlight is something that pairs deliciously with our mugs.
If you’re wanting an alternate to coffee, or another delicious drink to add to your arsenal, nuJo is your new BFF! I tried some and it is seriously so good. It smells kind of like Christmas and has a tea-like taste. I love just drinking it on its own without any sweetener or cream, it’s a delicious and relaxing evening drink. nuJo is a unique blend of organic superfoods, including roasted chicory & quinoa combined with orange peel, allspice & cloves. 100% organic MCT coconut oil provides the perfect finish.
Carmen started this business out of necessity, and is here to tell you all about it below.
HOW IT STARTED: My name is Carmen Wagner, originally from Michigan but middle Tennessee has been my home for 25 years. nuJo started as result of my frustration in trying to find something better than coffee to drink that actually tasted good…I thought ‘seriously it can’t be that hard!’ And two weeks later I found myself slightly obsessed with the whole idea.
TIMELINE OF EVENTS: That was about 20 years ago now…. The name nuJo = ‘your new cup of Joe’ was the working name that just settled into itself and I couldn’t rename it anything else! In late 2017, I decided to bring it to market as an online ‘I did it!’ which happened to be the same year we adopted our son Tuck. My workload doubled in the year 2018 as I juggled a baby and day job. 2019 was ‘do it or don’t’ and ended up with nuJo in 25 retailers and realized the potential. 2020 actually did better than 2019, even with no inventory for 75% of the year due to packaging issues.
FAVORITE PART OF THE BUSINESS: meeting people! Retailers are so kind & supportive. I love hearing from our ‘drinkers’ that discover nuJo and how it has helped them in so many ways. The comraderie with other entrepreneurs that share their journeys is always so uplifting.
PRODUCTS: I love the grind nuJo, getting up in the morning and making a fresh pot of brew, such a lovely way to ease into the day with a health boost that is YUM. In the summer, there is nothing more refreshing than cold brew. People loooove the health benefits, that’s why they try it, but then bam! They love the taste and they are hooked. My other favorite part of nuJo is the antiviral and antibacterial properties, literally keeps me healthy when I don’t take great care of myself.
Because life is messy and hard. It’s full of stress and overwhelm. It’s noisy and unnerving. BUT. When we trust in God, he fills us with joy and peace. So we overflow with hope thanks to the Holy Spirit. Not thanks to our willpower or self-care. Not thanks to gritting our teeth and muscling through. But thanks to the Holy Spirit. The Lord alone can give us hope during hard times. Peace in the storm. And joy despite heartache.
My prayer is that this mug is a reminder of those things. That you’re not joyful because today you choose to be joyful. Rather, you’re joyful because “the God of hope fills you with joy and peace as you trust in Him.”
This month’s “recipe that makes my life easier” is the Apple Cider Vinegar drink (and bonus- 3 variations!). It makes my life easier because I can make up several bases at a time, put them in the fridge and then just dump+add a can of carbonated water when it’s time to have one. It also makes my life easier because I can get all the good things in my body in one fell swoop. This drink is packed with so much good stuff, and I’ll lay it all out for you below. You can drink it from one of the glasses in our shop, or put it in one of those bigger 40 oz cups if you’d like it more diluted. Alrighty, read on!
To many people, the thought of drinking apple cider vinegar (lovingly referred to henceforth as ACV) is totally gross and nonsensical. To others, it sounds like a healthy plan, but completely unbearable and non-palatable.
I’m here to tell you you that you can LOVE drinking ACV and reap all the health-boosting benefits now. Yes now!
First, why would you want to incorporate Apple Cider Vinegar into your daily drinking routine?
Because! To name a few:
it’s anti-bacterial and prevents infection.
it helps in the reduction of blood pressure and cholesterol.
it helps in detoxification of the body.
natural appetite suppressant.
aids in nausea/wards off flu.
helps clear the skin of acne.
helps relieve migraines.
So let’s get started shall we? To those following Trim Healthy Mama, drinks with ACV are nicknamed Good Girl Moonshine because they give you that yeeeeow!!! kick when you take a good swig. In fact that’s how I first came upon drinking ACV was through the Trim Healthy Mama eating plan. So check them out if you want a sustainable, healthy, balanced, plan for long-term health.
OK! So! Can we just drink it plain? NO! It’s actually bad for your teeth to have that going undiluted across them. And since we’ve come this far and have committed to drinking ACV, let’s add a few more good things to it.
Ginger. Ground (or fresh) ginger is beneficial because it promotes better digestion, helps fight infection, keeps the heart healthy, and improves brain function to name a few.
Baobab. Baobab is anti-aging, high in fiber, an energy booster, strengthens the immune system and is helpful for healthy: blood vessels, bones, gums, skin, and teeth. Dang! A happy healthy powerhouse. You can get it at health food stores or here.
Lemon. Fresh lemon juice provides antioxidants, boosts metabolism, keeps hair and skin healthy, improves digestive health, and promotes liver health.
Pyure. Pyure is a zero-calorie sweetener made from stevia. Make sure you get the one with only “organic erythritol, organic stevia leaf extract, and natural flavors” as ingredients. This is what it looks like.
Apple Cider Vinegar. Make you sure you get the kind with the “mother.” The mother gives it a cloudy appearance but it is actually super health-promoting. Apple Cider Vinegar with the Mother contains healthy bacteria, high iron content, probiotics, and antioxidants.
Alrighty! Let’s make our base! This will stay the same no matter what else we decide to add to it.
Happy Healthy Base:
1 Tbsp Baobab
1 tsp ground ginger
1 Tbsp Pyure
2 Tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar with the Mother
Juice of 1 Lemon (fresh)
1/2 cup water
Mix all ingredients together. It may seem like a lengthy list, but if you designate a little corner of your cabinet to it, you can store them all in one place and pull them out at once to throw together. You’ll soon be doing this without a second thought.
Now let’s make them fun and yummy! I always add a can of La Croix, Bubly, etc to my Happy Healthy Drink. The bubbles make it easier and more fun to drink and widens our flavor options considerably.
THREE APPLE CIDER VINEGAR RECIPES:
Watermelon Burst: 1 can Watermelon La Croix + 1 packet watermelon True Lime + Happy Healthy Base. Mix. Add more water as needed. Serve over ice.
Just Peachy: 1 can Peach Bubly + 1 Country Peach Passion Tea bag, brewed in 1 cup water and cooled + Happy Healthy Base (minus water. Use cooled tea). Mix. Serve over ice.
Cherry Limeade: 1 can lime La Croix or Bubly + 1/2 Cherry Berry Hydrates stick + Happy Healthy Base. Mix. Add more water as needed.Serve over ice.
You can enjoy one of those 3 simple apple cider vinegar recipes above, or use the happy healthy base to make a creation of your own! While resting assured that with each sip, you’re giving your body, healthy & happy ingredients so it can function at it’s best.
What’re you thankful for today? Warmer weather? A new book? Night out with friends? Ordering in food? While some things are big and obvious that you’re thankful for, this week I challenge you to find the little things to be grateful for.
I created this mug as a reminder that even on hard days, awful days, stressful days, there is always something to be thankful for. Even if we have to hunt like mad for it. 😉 Each day is a gift from the Lord, and we are told to give thanks in all circumstances.
The verse that goes with this mug is:
1 Thessalonians 5:18 – give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.
I hope this mug + verse is an encouragement to you as you use it each day. It also makes a great gift for your friend, mom, sister, or any woman in your life! Along with the mug, you get the above verse on a scripture card to display wherever you need the extra reminder.