How Many Ways Can You Use a Large Utility Tote?

Have you ever thought about it?  Do you think totes are just for the grocery store?  Or maybe you think beach bag? Or purse (okay maybe not a large utility tote)?  The truth is totes come in every shape and size, right?  If we stop to the grocery store, how many times have you forgotten the bags at home or maybe they are still in the trunk of the car…. admit it, I’m not alone, right? Yes, this “Bag Lady” does occasionally forget to take her totes with her….. SHHH!!!  It will be our little secret.

Let’s talk about Thirty One’s Large Utility Tote for a minute…. Did you know it has been the TOP SELLER (usually the #1 spot) since it was first introduced?  You may ask why?  It is just a tote… but not just any tote.  No, it doesn’t have magical powers…..

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The top use is for grocery shopping….I have a simple system to ensure the totes are in the care when I head to the store. Once I unpack the totes, I set them by the door so they are in plain sight when I go out to the car the next time.  They are always put in the truck of the CRV.  So, how do I remember to take them with me?  On the days I am grocery shopping, I put my purse in the trunk.  Yup, I can’t go shopping without my purse, so when I open the trunk to get my purse, I pick up my totes.    Sometimes I will place them on the seat next to me.  I don’t know about you but I need to have things written on a list OR right in front of me in order to remember them.
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Add a Double Chill Thermal to your large utility tote and you have the perfect way to keep your frozen foods solid during the hot summer months.  Okay, so most of us are battling the frigid cold right now but summer is just around the corner. This set of two water-resistant Leak Lock® thermal inserts lets you pack ice without worry, and side handles make these soft-sided cooler bags easy to carry.  Great for grocery shopping, a day at the beach or a picnic.
Everyone is into decluttering these days…. why not use a large utility tote it to keep your closet in order.  Can you imagine how many blankets you could fit in one if you used the Tidying Up method of folding???  It even collapses for easy storage!  AND it can be personalized!  Shoes all over the floor?  Why not try dividing a tote with bottle dividers from the liquor store?
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Have kids in sports?  Admit it, their equipment is ALL over the trunk of the car.  There is always something that goes missing – a glove, a sock, a shirt – why not make it easy by putting a tote in the trunk JUST for sporting equipment or after school activities.  How about tailgating at all of the games/ practices this spring?   Picture-201.png    Know someone getting married?  The large utility tote is a great wedding gift…

Did I mention the BEST part of the large utility tote in February????  It is on SALE!!!  Who doesn’t love a sale right?

Why not grab TWO and split the cost with your bestie!

So many uses for just one bag… which one is calling you?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

The Many Uses of a Large Utility Tote

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Since the summer is quickly approaching, I have come up with a system to ensure the bags are in the car AND I take them in the store when I go shopping.  Once I unpack the totes, I set them by the door so they are in plain sight when I go out to the car the next time.  They are always put in my truck of the CRV.  So, how do I remember to take them with me?  On the days I am grocery shopping, I put my purse in the trunk.  Yup, I can’t go shopping without my purse, so when I open the trunk to get my purse, I pick up my totes.    Sometimes I will place them on the seat next to me.  I don’t know about you but I need to have things written on a list OR right in front of me in order to remember them.

Thirty One has a variety of totes (and thermals) which make shopping especially grocery shopping so much easier.  Here are some tips to help you pick the one for YOU:

Did you  know the Large Utility Tote has been the company’s TOP SELLER (usually #1) since it was first introduced.  The Large Utility Tote is 11.75″ High x 21.5″ Wide x 10″ deep. The structured metal frame keeps it open for bulky items and provides strength for durability. Use it to keep your closet in order, carry toys or groceries while you’re on the go, haul camping gear and so much more. It even collapses for easy storage!  AND it can be personalized!  Need a visual, check out some of these different uses:

Have kids in sports?  Want to be ready for the beach or the pool?  Team up the large utility tote with the all in organizer and a picnic thermal.

   Wedding gifts… Party Time…    Camping.

Do you need a tote for a weekend trip, or a teacher bag, or a tote for errands when you’re schlepping a lot of stuff around?  I love the fact Thirty One’s totes are multi-purpose.

Did I mention the BEST part of the large utility tote in May????  It is on SALE!!!  Who doesn’t love a sale right?

Why not grab TWO and split the cost with your bestie!

So many uses for just one bag… which one is calling you?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

Make the Most of a Staycation

Thank you Moscato Mom for inspiring this post….

As a single mom of a competitive cheerleader, vacations were usually tied to cheering competitions out of state.  Always a lot of fun but not very relaxing.  We were always on the hunt for budget-friendly options.   Today, they are know as “a stay cation” and are often dreaded!   Honestly, we live at the shore, who wants to stay at the shore with all of the “shoobies”.

Check out some awesome ideas for having the best staycation this summer.

Camping

This was not an option for a LONG time when my daughter was little.  She was definitely a hotel and room service kind of girl.  Then she went camping with one of her best friends and her mom.  Despite some hiccups, she had a good time.  Camping memories are some of the best for me growing up.  There are many great sites for camping at a low cost in our area. Some of them even offer it for free! You could even pop up a tent and camp out in your backyard. Camping is a great, cheap way to enjoy the outdoors with your family this summer. Don’t forget to pack the makings for s’mores!

Beach

Pack up the family, the swimming gear and the sunscreen and head to your local beach! Living at the shore, this is not on the tops of my list since everyone else is headed this way.  When we lived in South Jersey, we used to go to the Bay or the Lake.  Most cities around the country have lakes that allow for swimming, fishing, boating and relaxing at the beach. Fill a cooler with lunch and snacks and just spend the day enjoying the water and the sun.

Museums

This was definitely not for us ….If hanging out in the heat is not your favorite thing to do during the summer, you can still have some fun in your local area without spending a ton. Check out your local museums. You can walk around in a nice air conditioned building to beat the heat while having fun learning about history. Admission to most museums is only a few dollars!

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Pretend you are a “shoobie”.  Are there some new restaurants in town you haven’t been to yet and would like to try? Are there some local parks you haven’t been to before? Another great staycation idea is to spend the day exploring your town. Go to some parks, take a long walk, try out some new local food, grab some ice cream cones, whatever your heart desires. This will possibly be one of the more pricey staycation options but it is far less expensive and stressful than traveling.

Movies

Another option for beating the heat this summer is to head to the theater! A lot of new movies come out during the summer months so it is a really good time to go. Check your local theater’s websites for coupons to save on tickets and snacks. Another alternative to going to a movie is to attend a live-action play. Check out your local playhouse to see what their current productions are.

What is your best “staycation” idea?

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

 

Tasty Tuesday – S’mores Pies

I have always loves s’mores.  I remember when Belinda was younger, we used to hang out at my best friend’s house and the kids would make them in the fire pit.  BUT, if you are watching those calories, you want to limit yourself to just one.  Honestly, can you?  I know I can’t.  So I am grateful for the recipe from Hungry Girl.

The best part is, you don’t need an outdoor fire to make them, you can do them right in your own kitchen anytime.  WOOHOO!!! So be sure to stock up on the ingredients when you hit the grocery store.

1/6th of recipe (1 mini pie): 149 calories, 6g total fat (2g sat fat), 128mg sodium, 20.5g carbs, 2.5g fiber, 8g sugars, 3.5g protein  SmartPoints® value 6*

Prep: 20 minutes   Cook: 15 minutes

Ingredients:
Crust
1 cup old-fashioned oats
1/4 cup light whipped butter or light buttery spread
1/4 cup unsweetened applesauce
3 tbsp. powdered peanut butter
2 packets no-calorie sweetener (like Truvia)
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/8 tsp. salt

Filling
2 tbsp. mini semi-sweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup mini marshmallows
2 graham crackers (1/2 sheet), finely crushed

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray 6 cups of a 12-cup muffin pan with nonstick spray.
  • To make the crust, pulse oats to the consistency of coarse flour in a small blender/food processor.
  • In a small microwave-safe bowl, microwave butter for 20 seconds, or until melted.
  • In a large bowl, combine ground oats, melted butter, and remaining crust ingredients. Mix until uniform with the consistency of wet sand.
  • Evenly distribute mixture among the 6 cups of the muffin pan, using your hands or a flat utensil to firmly press and form the crusts. Press it into the edges and up along the sides.
  • Bake until firm, about 10 minutes.
  • Remove from oven, and set oven to broil.
  • Evenly distribute 1 tbsp. chocolate chips among the crusts. Top with marshmallows and remaining 1 tbsp. chocolate chips.
  • Cook until marshmallows have melted and lightly browned, about 1 minute.
  • Sprinkle with crushed graham crackers.

Here is a great way to carry all of the s’mores must haves when you head out this summer.  Thirty One’s Perfect Party Set is great for this.

This thermal bag will prevent your chocolate from melting in the heat.  An entertaining wonder! This thermal keeps your food warm or cool on your way to the party, with two compartments sized to fit 9” x 13” pans.

Have a ThirtyOne-derful day!

Happy Birthday Dad!

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Remember that I said October is birthday month in our family? Well, today is my Dad’s 85th Birthday!  WOOHOO!

Life with Dad wasn’t always easy but it was always interesting….Dad worked a lot and at some really unusual jobs.

Mom and he worked at the local private airport. Mom worked in the office and dad in the monkey house. Yup, that was what it was called.  He used to transport cars down to Florida for Mr. Brown (the airport owner) then fly home on one of his little planes. I thought the airport was my private playground.

He worked at Monmouth Bottle Shop but it wasn’t just your typical liquor store. They sold amazing furniture (bars, coffee tables, etc) that came from Mexico. As a result, we got to go to Acapulco one summer for a “business trip“. The summer of my first bikini.

Then there are some memories that stand out and each have their own story:

  • Lots of Camping trips – including cross country
  • Dad picking up my now hubby from the police station (maybe more than once)
  • Dad picking me up at Horner’s when I was late coming home from a date
  • Dad reaching out to his HAM radio buddies to help me with geography papers in school

Then there were the rough years when alcohol stole my dad from me. He was not the dad who pulled me on the sled to visit my grandparents at Christmas. He was not the Dad who worked tireless along side my mom to serve breakfast to over 300 kids after the junior prom. Those years are the years that I have chosen t0 forgive him for knowing that it was the addiction and not him.  But for 16 years, I was angry and then came Belinda and my own addiction.  That is when I started to understand…

I will be eternally grateful for my Dad for a visit during my first few days in drug rehab in Pennsylvania. Edythe told dad what was happening and despite the fact that I hadn’t seen or talked to him in almost 16 years – he came to see me. In fact, I was supposed to be on blackout and he convinced them that this visit was important to my recovery. He was right! That was when the long road to recovery began not only from my addiction but to a relationship with my Dad.

I will never forget the smile on his or Belinda’s face the first time they met – Belinda was about 2 1/2 years old. Then there was the birthday party where Belinda helped opened cards for Dad, only to announce when they had no money in them. Dad gave her a male role model in her life.  She was blessed to be “adopted” by her best friend’s dad but this was different. This is her Pop-pop. From then on, two holidays were always celebrated with Dad – Father’s Day or as Belinda always called it “Pop-pop Day” and Thanksgiving.

The greatest gift was the day that he walked me down the aisle at my wedding. I never thought the day would come (the wedding or dad being a part of it). Dad was there – holding on to me as the realization that I was getting married sunk in and dancing that Father/Daughter dance despite the pain. Memories that I will cherish forever.

Thank you Dad for your love and support. The road may have been rocky but I learned so many things along the way. I love you and wish you many more birthday years.

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