On-the-Air: "Good Day Chicago"

They don't call Chicago the Windy City for nothing!  It's always fun to do segments outside, although heavy blocks and duct tape go a long way toward keeping table coverings and products secured on the table on a windy day.

I had a great time this morning talking back-to-school on "Good Day Chicago," doing our segment live on their Michigan Avenue plaza.  Check out this link or click on the image below to see the full segment!

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It was also great to be back at the close of the show with four of the anchors.

I did this segment on behalf of several companies.  Here is where you can find the items discussed!

Mother's Day Gift Guide

When it comes to Mother's Day gifts, I'm all about things that are practical.  Things that Mom can actually use, rather than things that, as my dad would say, "have to be dusted."

That's why I am excited to partner with several companies share fun gift ideas on my Mother's Day TV tour!   

Spring is a great time to help Mom refresh her wardrobe.  In addition to beautiful pieces for work and special occasions, Coldwater Creek also has great basics like this 3/4-Sleeve Easy Care Shirt and Cotton Luxe Ankle Pants. The shirts come in more than a dozen vibrant colors and prints, and - bonus - require little or no ironing!

Even better, to make it easy for you to stock up, Coldwater Creek is offering 20 percent off your entire order through May 5!  To get your savings, just enter the code "living20" at checkout.

For handstamped necklaces, bracelets, and rings that can be customized especially for her, check out these beautiful pieces from The Vintage Pearl.  (Photos courtesy of The Vintage Pearl).

Moms love getting their nails done, but who has time for frequent trips to the nail salon?  This Pro45 Train Case from Red Carpet Manicure keeps everything she needs to do a gel manicure at home in one stylish place. (Photo courtesy of Red Carpet Manicure).

You never go wrong with food and drink as well!  For a brunch so easy that even the kids can make it, Sweet Earth Natural Foods makes yummy, wholesome convenience foods like savory breakfast burritos or a savory Meatless Sausage, Egg and Gouda breakfast sandwich.  You can even add a few slices of their Benevolent Bacon, which is made with a plant-based protein and smothered with a yummy smoked, hickory-sage sauce.  (Photos courtesy of Sweet Earth Foods). 

For a zesty beverage with a Mother's Day brunch, Schöfferhofer Grapefruit Beer is a light, refreshing drink that pairs beautifully with eggs Benedict, French toast, steak and eggs, and other brunch favorites.  In addition to regular cans and bottles, it now comes in a this stylish slim can that is easy to pack for a Mother's Day picnic. (Photo courtesy of Schöfferhofer).

To help Mom get her coffee fix every day, Keurig Green Mountain is offering great deals on their gift bundles until May 14.  The K55 Bundle (shown at left) includes this standard K55 brewer (the Rhubarb Red color will look fabulous on the kitchen counter!), along with a rose quartz ceramic travel mug, a variety pack of Green Mountain Coffee, and the My K-Cup filter that lets you brew your own coffee in the machine.  At only $114.99 through May 14 at www.keurig.com it is more than $50 off the regular price.  If you want give her a brewer that has the versatility of using K-Cup, Vue, K-Mug, and K-Carafe pods, the K475 bundle is the way to go (love the Antique Red color!).  It also includes the rose quartz mug, variety pack of coffee, and the my K-Cup filter.  At only $139.99, the K475 bundle is more than $55 off its regular price.  (Photos courtesy of Keurig Green Mountain).

Happy shopping!


Game Day Party (Football Optional)

When it comes to football, I have to admit that I've never been a huge NFL fan.

But I can always get on board for throwing a party!  So with The Big Game coming up in less than two weeks, I am getting my game on for a Super Bowl segment this week in Portland.  

Here are a few of the yummy foods and drinks I am showing for several companies.  Happily, the crew is always eager to help "clean up" the display after the segment wraps.

We have been ordering steaks from Omaha Steaks for forever.  In addition to their yummy burgers and franks, this Fan Favorite Finger Food assortment includes game-day faves like bacon-wrapped pepper jack shrimp, artisan steak flatbread, Buffalo chicken wings - along with the absolutely essential gourmet franks in a blanket. (all photos from Omaha Steaks). (Photos courtesy of Omaha Steaks).

For guests who do not eat meat, Sweet Earth Natural Foods has an array of super-flavorful appetizers and entrees that are all made from plant-based proteins and natural ingredients.  For an easy appetizer platter, serve an assortment of international burritos such as the Curry Tiger (with flavors of turmeric, cinnamon and cardamom), the Kyoto (with sesame) and the Get Cultured, a Korean-inspired blend of seasoned tofu, cabbage, red peppers, edamame and ginger.  (These are all so yummy, you'll want to make plenty for your meat-eating friends as well!) (Photos courtesy of Sweet Earth Natural Foods).

Continue the international theme with Sweet Earth's easy entree bowls, in 12 flavors ranging from a curry Chana Masala to Bean and Mango Cubano to General Tso's Tofu - a healthier hack of what is normally a very heavy dish.

These burritos and entrees are all simply heat-and-eat, but if you want to make a recipe or two from scratch, you can make these savory Benevolent Bacon Potato Skins that use Sweet Earth's Benevolent Bacon (it is made with seitan, a protein made from wheat that cooks and crisps up like bacon).  Load up potato skins with beans, corn, jalapeno, avocado, lime and tomatoes - and top them off with chunks of the bacon.  All of these Sweet Earth products are readily available at stores like Walmart, Target, Whole Foods and more, and you can check out their web site for store locations and more recipes. (all photos from Sweet Earth).

Judging from the commercials, you'd think all anyone drinks during the game is beer.  But - surprise! - wine is quickly becoming the drink of choice for many, especially as more women watch the game and host parties.  For people who love organic products - or just a great Sangria - Eppa Sangria is a perfect match for burritos and other Sweet Earth foods.  For a food-friendly wine that goes with just about everything, Barone Fini Pinot Grigio is full-bodied enough for heavier appetizers, but will not overwhelm the lighter fare - if you have any - on your Super Bowl menu. (Photo courtesy of Eppa).

In my opinion, sparkling wine is great for any occasion - and what better time to break out the bubbly than for Super Bowl?  Yellow Tail Bubbles is a perfect pairing with all of the savory fare on your menu, and at only about $9.99 per bottle, it's easy to stock up for a crowd. (Photos courtesy of Yellow Tail).

Finally, Party City is great for one-stop shopping for table decor.  From football-themed partyware to decorations, it's easy to style a great gridiron-themed party - whether or not anyone watches the game.

Do you actually watch the game - or are you all about the food and commercials?