I’m Attending Shiftcon Eco-Wellness Conference 2018!

I’m Attending Shiftcon Eco-Wellness Conference 2018!

As a ShiftCon eco-wellness influencer & volunteer, I have been given free admission to ShiftCon 2018. This post contains my affiliate link for event ticket purchases. All opinions are mine. © ShiftCon

I am really excited to share that I will be at ShiftCon in Irvine, CA, February 1 -3, 2018. I know it seems so far away, but I have to tell you how ecstatic I am because I have been dying to go since I first heard about this event in 2015. If you are a social media eco-wellness influencer and/or blogger that wants to be part of the movement of shifting perspectives, then this conference is totally for you!

Shifters prize themselves as being part of something bigger than themselves. We are a community with a mission to change the world. It’s a focus on wellness, green and sustainable products and technology. – ShiftCon

© ShiftCon © ShiftCon

Ok, so what is ShiftCon?

An eco-wellness social influencer’s dream.

It is a conference filled with the community of like-minded people that want to create a more sustainable earth and work with brands that bring value to their lives and their audience’s lives. I’ve been following the event on social media for the last two years, gawking at all of the fun, but also the wealth of knowledge that is shared by the numerous experts in the fields of health, food, wellness, communications, legislation, social media and healing. See past speakers here.

© ShiftCon

Join us for three days of learning, growing and life-changing experiences! There are two influencer/blogger options when you purchase your tickets. The ELITE track gives you access on Thursday to an additional 9 workshops, totaling 24 workshops! The Influencer/Blogger track gives you access beginning Friday to 15 workshops.

© ShiftCon

In addition to all of the learning, there will be a lot of fun! There’s an expo hall where over 40 brands will be showcasing their products and services. You’ll go home with 2 swag bags and be fed a reception meal, 2 lunches and 2 breakfasts, plus featured snacks and refreshments!

© ShiftCon © Hotel Irvine

Location, Location, Location.

The event will be held at Hotel Irvine, and the rate is $179 per night. Book early and know that when you reserve your room, a one night’s hotel fee will be charged to your card for reservation. Will I see you at ShiftCon? I hope so! Make sure to say hi! I look forward to learning, growing and shifting with all of you! Get your tickets now!


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Recap: Disney Food and Wine as an Annual Passport Holder

Recap: Disney Food and Wine as an Annual Passport Holder

©Sarah Brow ©Sarah Brow

Sarah, here! Did you get a chance to visit the Disney California Adventure Food and Wine Festival?

I wanted to share my recent experience as an Annual Passport (AP) holder. Throughout the year Disneyland Resort has special events and often have exclusive experiences for AP holders. The AP Disney California Adventure Food and Wine Festival Sip and Savor pass was a great purchase & experience, so I look forward to more AP events in the future! It was a great way to really get the most out of The Disney California Adventure Food and Wine Festival experience.

The AP Food and Wine festival Sip and Savor Pass was $45, including tax, and consisted of 8 coupons.

©Sarah Brow ©Sarah Brow

With over ten festival marketplaces there was definitely something for everyone. Like many AP events, alcoholic beverages are a separate fee. Even then, I knew that I had to try the Mimosa Flight, located at The Uncork California Marketplace.

The Mimosa Flight included a Pear Mimosa, Apricot Mimosa, and Mango Mimosa. My favorite? The pear!

©Sarah Brow ©Sarah Brow

If Mimosas weren’t your thing, there was a Beer Garden located in the Paradise Grill Marketplace. You know, if you prefer drink like Gaston. 🙂

WHAT I ATE AT THE DISNEY FOOD & WINE FESTIVAL

Nuts and Cheese | Brie toast with fig and mint with roasted California almond crumble

I Heart Artichokes | Fried Artichoke Carbonara with Garlic Aioli & smoked bacon

Bacon Twist | Baby iceberg and heirloom tomato wedge with peppered bacon and blue cheese dressing & Smoked bacon mac & cheese with barbecue-seasoned crispy onions

Off the Cob | Sweet corn nuggets with beef chili, spring onions and sour cream

Sweet & Sourdough | White cheddar lager soup topped with bacon, served in a mini Boudin Sourdough Boule

LA Style | Chicken Teriyaki slider with spicy Dole® pineapple jam & Korean barbecue beef short rib tacos with Kimchi slaw

It was really hard deciding what my favorite food was, but my top 3 favorite bites were:

  1. Sweet corn nuggets, from Off the Cob
  2. Chicken Teriyaki sliders, from LA Style
  3. Fried Artichoke Carbonara, from I Heart Artichokes

Pass holders also received a special AP button at each marketplace location, with a Sip and Savor Pass redemption.

The AP corner included a special photo opportunity, a Festival handout, a free Food and Wine Festival button (the design changed weekly) and of course you can’t forget limited time merchandise!

Did you attend Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival, too? We would love to know what your favorite bites were from the Food and Wine Festival! Please share your thoughts with us!
See ya real soon!

xo, Sarah

Five Reasons to Attend Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

Five Reasons to Attend Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

 

Disney + Food and Wine?

Sign. Me. Up.

Fantasia © Disney; Image via GIPHY

It doesn’t take much to get me excited about visiting Disneyland Resort (DLR), but the notion of amazing eats and adult drinks has me absolutely elated. I didn’t have the chance to visit DLR for last year’s event, and sadly this year I will not be eating and drinking my way around Disneyland California Adventure Park (DCA), but my bestie, Sarah will be so stay tuned because she will be reporting on her fun soon!

Are you a food and/or wine enthusiast with a love for magic? You will want to mark your calendar for this year’s Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival, now through April 16, 2017. There are just two weeks left of this event, so make it a date night (or day) and head to DCA! There are so many activities for all ages, so feel free to bring the kiddos!

Bonus, if you’re an Annual Passport holder, make sure to check out AP Corner for limited edition experiences and treats.

Images © Disneyland Resort Images © Disneyland Resort

5 Reasons you need to visit Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival

1| Food & Wine

Need I say more? There are so many ways to enjoy the cuisine and beverages available during the Food & Wine Festival. For those of us that have food allergies or restrictions, they also offer gluten-free and vegetarian at many locations! I heard there is a Mimosa Flight and I am all about that life. Peruse the park, eat, drink and be merry. Very merry. 🙂

2| Festival Marketplaces

There are over a dozen marketplaces open daily that will offer complementing cuisine to the Festival-inspired menus throughout the theme park’s restaurants and eateries. We have picky eaters & food allergies in our house, so knowing the amount of options available to all of my kids (and me) is important.

Image © Disney Image © Disney

3| “In the Kitchen” with Celebrity Chefs (Saturdays)

So many amazing celebrity chefs have been scheduled to appear since opening on March 10th!

Here’s the lineup for the last two weekends. Visit Disneyland.com/foodandwine to purchase your tickets!

Saturday, April 8 – 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Cat Cora
Cat Cora’s Kitchen

Saturday, April 15 – 6:00 PM to 7:00 PM
Jet Tila
Chopped and Cutthroat Kitchen

Event Location and Price
Festival Showplace, Stage 17 in Hollywood Land
$99.00 per person, plus tax and gratuities for servers

Image © Disney Image © Disney

4| The Signature Events

You know Disney does it big, so they have an amazing schedule of activities and opportunities for pretty much everyone in your group.

Sweet Sundays sound like an amazing way to spend a lazy Sunday – learning how to make sweet treats, and then eating them! This is a 90-minute culinary demonstration that includes a light breakfast and sparkling toast!

Winemaster & Brewmaster Dinners (Thursdays) offer a four-course meal, paired with either wine or beer. Courses are created by the Disney Executive Chef Team and you’ll have an opportunity to hear from the winemakers and brewmasters about the pairings!

*Signature Events require separate ticketed admission to enter Disney California Adventure Park. 

Image © Disney Image © Disney

5| Junior Chef experience

Who wouldn’t want to cook with Chef Goofy?! I seriously wish this was around when I was young! Kids ages 3 to 11 are invited to get their cooking groove on with Chef Goofy and the Jammin’ Chefs, and you can’t forget sous chefs, Chip ‘n Dale. Get hands on cooking experience and go home with a yummy treat! This musical program will happen daily in Paradise Park, near Golden Zephyr. Space is limited and is on a first-come, first-seated basis. Don’t miss out on a chance to hang with some of Disney’s celebrities!

Alright, magic makers, if you’ve got the time and the budget agrees, clear your calendar for a day to enjoy the Disney Food & Wine Festival, it would be a wonderful time spent, especially if your family is getting ready to relax for spring break! Feeling extra spontaneous?

Make it a weekend and book a trip with my travel partner – Get Away Today (affiliate link). Use my code “SPARKS” to get $10 off a 2 night package.

Happy spring!

So, what do you say? Will you be making your way to experience Disney California Adventure Food & Wine Festival?

Spread Magic

 

When Festivities Take Over Your Breakfast

When Festivities Take Over Your Breakfast

The day after Halloween ushers in Christmas in our home. Traditionally, we don’t put our tree up until after Thanksgiving, but the holiday music and scents of Christmas and winter fill the air early. I may or may not have broken that tradition of holiday music and started listening back in September. 🙂 

The holiday season means flavors are infused in everything and you can literally taste Christmas with every bite. We love celebrating the holidays and all the amazing flavors that come with it. In conjunction with my partnership with Denny’s, I invite you to try the new buttermilk pancakes infused with seasonal flavors! If you are not a pancake fan, don’t fret, because there is something for everyone! My kids enjoy the Holiday Cookie Milk Shake, and enjoy seeing their favorite friends from Rudolph ™ on the Kid’s Menu.

There are four new festive pancake breakfasts that you can enjoy until January 4, 2017 (each breakfast is served with two eggs and hash browns, with a choice of two strips of bacon or sausage links):

  • Salted Caramel & Banana Cream Pancake Breakfast – GUYS! There are shortbread cookie pieces in this buttermilk pancake concoction, along with vanilla cream, fresh bananas, and salted caramel sauce!
  • Pumpkin Cream Pancake Breakfast – These pumpkin pancakes are layered and topped with pumpkin cream!
  • Sticky Bun Pancake Breakfast – Imagine the flavor in these buttermilk pancakes with glazed pecans cooked inside, topped with sweet cinnamon and cream cheese icing… yum.
  • Rudolph™ Pancake Breakfast – Who doesn’t love to see a familiar face in their food? Kids will be tickled to see Rudolph served hot with turkey bacon antlers, topped with vanilla cream, and chocolate eyes and nose! 
Denny's Pumpkin Pancake Breakfast (Image © Denny's)

Denny’s Pumpkin Pancake Breakfast (Image © Denny’s)

Not in the mood for a full pancake breakfast? Denny’s has you covered to enjoy the seasonal flavors and offers Red Velvet Pancake Puppies (a favorite of my daughter!), a Turkey & Dressing Dinner, and a new Holiday Cookie Milk Shake.

  • The Red Velvet Pancake Puppies are filled with white chocolate chips and tossed in powdered sugar – don’t forget the cream cheese icing for dipping!
  • The Turkey & Dressing Dinner includes carved, premium turkey breast and served with stuffing, turkey gravy and cranberry sauce with a choice of two sides and dinner bread.
  • The Holiday Cookie Milk Shake is a new vanilla ice cream shake blended with cookie butter and topped with whipped cream and shortbread pieces!
Red Velvet Pancake Puppies (Image © Denny's)

Red Velvet Pancake Puppies (Image © Denny’s)

If you are not in the mood for baking, you can order and pick up a traditional Denny’s Pumpkin or Pecan pie whole, or by the slice, for family gatherings. Save your energy for holiday shopping and let Denny’s treat you by making the dessert! If you’ll be hitting the road for the holidays, remember that Denny’s is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week – even Thanksgiving and Christmas, and if you happen to dine on a Tuesday night with the kids, they eat free!

Sadly for me, I cannot try any of the items since they don’t have gluten free options (even the milkshake *crying inside*), but if I could, I’d be all over that Sticky Bun Pancake Breakfast! 🙂 I’ll be enjoying Denny’s classic hot chocolate topped with whipped cream and my gluten free breakfast sandwich! 

Which item entices you the most this season? 

This conversation was sponsored by Denny’s, as I am a member of the 2016 Denny’s Diner Ambassador Council. All thoughts and opinions are magical and always mine. 🙂

Finish off September with FREE Pancakes for the Kids & a Great Cause!

Finish off September with FREE Pancakes for the Kids & a Great Cause!

The season of fall has arrived! I’m always excited for cooler weather and warm drinks like hot chocolate, especially with a nice fluffy stack of pancakes. My sister swears by Denny’s amazing hot chocolate so I am going to be trying it myself soon. I consider myself a hot cocoa connoisseur, so we will see about that. 🙂 I’m always up for a challenge!

Kids are back in school, holidays are coming soon (yes, I know it’s only September, but I can’t help it). And every year, Denny’s teams up with non-profit organization, No Kid Hungry, a company that partners with local schools and communities in helping to end child hunger in America. To date, Denny’s has donated $3.3 million to the organization, assisting children throughout America. This year was the sixth year of participation on behalf of the restaurant and its team. 

With the launch of the new fluffier pancakes this summer, and for the month of September, Denny’s offers free pancakes to its littlest fans every day from 4 pm – 10 pm, with the purchase of an adult entree. This gives kids (who happen to be the toughest critics) the opportunity to see how Denny’s new recipe stacks up.

Along with the promotion, For every $1 donated, Denny’s and No Kid Hungry will provide 10 healthy meals to a child in need. Not only does the organization provide meals, but they give assistance with meal planning and budgeting for families.

Image © No Kid Hungry

Image © No Kid Hungry

Specifically in California, 1 in 4 children struggle with hunger… that’s 25% of children. That is not okay. However, thanks to No Kid Hungry and 18 of its partners in CA, the goal is to satisfy and fill the tummies of our state’s children. Our kids’ school district offers free and reduced lunch for eligible families, and free breakfast for all children. Giving kids the nutrients and energy needed to function for the day is important and benefits them, but also their classmates and teachers. It’s hard to focus when you’re hungry (or like my kids – hangry), so I can’t even imagine a child not having the basic needs of food fulfilled just to get through a school day.

Image © No Kid Hungry

Image © No Kid Hungry

If you’re not able to visit your local Denny’s in September to donate, you can visit dennysnokidhungry.com and if you’d like to be part of the yearlong movement, Denny’s will be donating $1 for every hashtag #ShareYourSlam on Twitter and Instagram.

Get your kids involved, too! We participated last year as well, and my boys were eager to help make sure kids were not going hungry. You can read that here.

Image © No Kid Hungry

Image © No Kid Hungry

About No Kid Hungry®

No child should go hungry in America, but 1 in 5 kids will face hunger this year. Using proven, practical solutions, No Kid Hungry is ending childhood hunger today by ensuring that kids start the day with a nutritious breakfast and families learn the skills they need to shop and cook on a budget. When we all work together, we can make sure kids get the healthy food they need. No Kid Hungry is a campaign of national anti-hunger organization Share Our Strength. Join us at NoKidHungry.org.

This conversation was sponsored by Denny’s in an ongoing partnership to bring awareness to the needs of hungry children in America, as I am a member of Denny’s Diner Ambassador Council. All thoughts and opinions are magical and always mine. 🙂

The Fluffier, The Better!

The Fluffier, The Better!

Pancakes. PANCAKES. P A N C A K E S.

I love them. My kids love them. I think most people love them. 

Know what I don’t love about them? Making them. Maybe it’s just me, but making pancakes can be messy. I feel like I can’t make them fast enough for this little army of mine. On the rare occasion that I am energized enough to wake up early to cook pancakes for a family of seven, I do enjoy it, but it has to be in the quiet of the morning. I just wish I had a pancake machine.

via GIPHY

Since I’m gluten free, I make my pancakes from scratch, but since it takes a while longer to get my stuff together, the hubby and kids now opt to make pancakes (that “just add water” stuff) on their own. I am okay with it, as long as they clean up their messes and make sure the glutenous particles have left the building before I need to use the kitchen.

While it’s special and sweet that they enjoy making a big mess in my kitchen, I really would rather them head to our #1 pancake spot, Denny’s for their fill of gluten (sans the mess).

Sticky Bun Pancake Breakfast - Image © Denny's

Sticky Bun Pancake Breakfast – Image © Denny’s

For many people, there is nostalgia in home-made breakfasts, like pancakes. With that in mind, Denny’s has recreated their pancake, which is 50% fluffier and packed with a home-made cakey flavor, than ever before. Using real eggs, fresh buttermilk and a hint of vanilla, they are hand whipping the goodness into fluffy, tasty clouds for their guests. I think it’s awesome, though I won’t be partaking in the pancake party, I will continue to advocate for those of us that have allergies, because it just plain sucks having to watch everyone devour fluffy pancakes while you eat an English muffin. I hope Denny’s hears my cries at some point and perhaps offers some gluten free cakes in the future.

Denny’s has also expanded its current pancake offerings to include four limited-time Signature Builds: The Sticky Bun Pancake Breakfast, Strawberries and Cream Pancake Breakfast, Double Berry Banana Pancake Breakfast, and Peanut Butter Cup Pancake Breakfast.

While I am extremely excited to see the faces of my kids as they chow down on The Sticky Bun Pancake Breakfast, I will be honest as I am equally nervous of the Peanut Butter Cup Pancake Breakfast, due to the severe peanut allergy that my daughter has (she also happens to be the serious lover of pancakes). The nice thing is, because I frequent the same Denny’s I can chat with the manager and the team regarding their kitchen practices in making sure she has a safe dining experience with this new addition to the menu. 

Strawberries and Cream Pancake Breakfast - Image © Denny's

Strawberries and Cream Pancake Breakfast – Image © Denny’s

If I could eat any of these new builds, it would be Strawberries and Cream or Double Berry Banana. There’s just something about fruit and whipped cream that makes me happy inside. For the first time, Denny’s will be offering these Signature Builds as junior size for the kiddos. If you’re looking for extra ways to save and enjoy a family meal, head to Denny’s on Tuesday nights, as kids eat free. 

Denny’s pancake party isn’t just in the restaurants, you can experience the fun on social media, too! Dine at Denny’s and you can use the fun Snapchat filters to tell your friends and followers that you’re having a pancake party, participate in Facebook Live events and you can always find entertainment on Denny’s YouTube channel. Denny’s also has a “Pancake Rejection Simulator” application where guests have to break the news to family members, telling them that their homemade pancakes are now second best (insert nervous emoticon here). All in all, it’s in good fun and great flavor, so enjoy the limited-time tastes and experience. 

Make sure to check out the menu online and go have a pancake party at your local Denny’s, with your favorite people! Remember, Denny’s serves breakfast ALL DAY!

This conversation was sponsored by Denny’s in an ongoing partnership to bring you the newest menus and special offerings, as I am a member of Denny’s Diner Ambassador Council. All thoughts and opinions are magical and mine. 🙂