Ocean Prime – Valentine’s Day Specials

My favorite restaurant in Denver is Ocean Prime. Their Larimer Square location is gorgeous, classy and the staff is literally perfect. We’re making plans to visit in February for our Anniversary/Valentine’s celebration and Ocean Prime is always our tradition!

So to spread the love wanted to share their amazing 2019 Valentine’s Specials! First, is their “Cupid’s Kiss” cocktail – A delicious love inspired beverage made with prickly pear puree, lemon, St. Germain, prosecco, and orange bitters ($13).

I’d be all over this drank if I wasn’t preggo 😉 Photo Credit: Ocean Prime

Next, their amazing appetizer – Chargrilled oysters (6-piece), served with Worcestershire Sauce, butter, and parmesan ($24) *drooool* I wish I could have shellfish *cry*

Photo Credit: Ocean Prime

End it with their incredible entrees with your choice of Waygu NY strip (6-oz.) served with lobster ravioli, charred broccolini, and lemon tarragon sauce ($60) or the Roasted Sea Bass over Alaskan King Crab Gnocchi with Champagne Cream served with baby carrot salad topped with a preserved lemon pepper vinaigrette ($60)

Yasss! Photo Credit: Ocean Prime

Then top off your exquisite romantic dinner with their decadent raspberry marble cheesecake with a macadamia nut crust ($13)

Photo Credit: Ocean Prime

You know how busy Valentine’s can be so reservations are encouraged and can be made by calling: (303) 825-3663 (Ocean Prime Larimer Square), or: (303) 552-3000 (Ocean Prime DTC), or by visiting: https://www.ocean-prime.com/reservations.

Enjoy the delicious food and charming atmosphere while spending time with the one you love most. You’ll make it a tradition too once you try it – No need for thanks 😉

Formulate – Personalized Shampoo and Conditioner

Anyone else super picky with beauty products? 🙋

I’m so weird about what I use for my hair because I feel like my hair either gets super greasy or super brittle – I could never find the right balance! But after doing some research I found Formulate!

They use chemists to create specific hair products based on your hair type and hair goals. So your products are actually scientifically engineered for you! How cool is that?!

When visiting their website you’re prompted to describe your hair – Color, length, pattern, thickness, oily/dry, scalp sensitivity, which tools you use to style your hair, and more. They use all of this information to decide which problems you may be looking to fix.

After your hair history is added you move on to your specific hair goals. You can choose between 1 to 5 goals and they’ll create the perfect mix to aid you in your healthier hair objective! For example, I chose as my five goals: Deep Conditioning, Hydration, Lengthening, Volumizing and Glossy Hair! AND what I was really excited for.. You get to choose your OWN scent! There are seven different scents and they’re all natural and fresh smelling. I chose Verdant (Which is Grass, Lilies, and Eucalyptus) and it smells amazinggg.

As you could probably tell I was SO excited to give it a try. It shipped super fast and I used it immediately!! The scent was so fresh and the lather really felt like it was penetrating deep into my strands and scalp! Wasn’t something I had experienced with other hair products before!

Now I know this sounds ridiculous but LITERALLY it made a difference after the first use!! After my hair dried I brushed it thoroughly and came out with fluffy, soft and luscious hair! My Hubby said something as soon as he saw it!

That shine, though ❥

After using it for over a week I can honestly say I’m still obsessed and in love. The scent grows on me more and more every time I use it (It actually lingers which I LOVE)

I seriously cannot imagine going back to traditional shampoo and conditioner after using something that was so specifically formulated for me! And the bottles look super fancy.. So that’s a plus 😉

I’d love for my followers to get a chance to try it for themselves! In collaboration with them I am giving ONE lucky winner the chance to win a set of their very own personalized shampoo and conditioner! To Enter Visit: https://www.formulate.co/u/simplykaraliz! Good luck y’all! 🌺

(I was compensated for this post but all opinions are my own. I seriously love this stuff, y’all!)

Mile High Epidemic – Teen Vaping

I’m sure y’all have heard comments like this before: “Vaping isn’t nearly as dangerous as smoking cigarettes.” or, “It’s just water vapor – How can that be worse for you than straight cigarettes?”.

Well, these thoughts and ideas are filling our teen’s heads and they believe they’re actually making a “safer” decision by keeping to e-cigarettes. In reality, a JUUL pod (an e-cigarette cartridge) contains the same amount of nicotine as 20 cigarettes. TWENTY CIGARETTES.

Colorado youth are vaping nicotine at twice the national average and at the highest rate of 37 states surveyed, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And, most recently, on Sept. 12, 2018, the FDA declared vaping as an epidemic across the United States.

How terrifying is that?! Colorado is ranked at TWICE the national average. As the mother and step-mother of almost five children that absolutely horrifies me. That could be one of my children. My 14 year old step-son could so easily hear these misconceptions and think it’d be “cool” to try vaping and then get addicted. Getting hooked on e-cigarettes could introduce horrible chemicals and nicotine into his body and within a year it could be a gateway into actual cigarettes.

There is little known about the long-term effects of vaping, however it is proven to have negative effects on their mental development as it harms their memory capabilities and causes depression. There is enough going on in our teens’ brains at this vulnerable age and we cannot have them stunting it with smoking.

This is not the future I want for my children and that is the reality of many teens right now in our state and country. So I implore my fellow parents and educators to cultivate their children’s thinking on vaping, even if it is not cigarettes. It Still.. Isn’t.. Safe.

According to the Tobacco Free Colorado website, about half of Colorado high school students have tried vaping nicotine and a statewide school survey shows 87 percent of Colorado high school students think cigarette smoking is risky, but only 50 percent think those risks apply to vaping nicotine.

As parents, we hold the responsibility in informing our children of the risks – even if they don’t smoke or have never tried it. It’s important to bestow the knowledge onto them.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has created a suite of materials to help parents and askable adults to understand the risks of vaping, and prepare them to have informed conversations with teens about it. The materials are available on the new Tobacco Free Colorado website at www.TobaccoFreeCO.org/know-the-facts.

(I was compensated for this post in partnership with the Colorado Department of Health and Environment. All opinions are my own and I truly feel passionate about this as my children are my world!)

KidSpace A Children’s Exploration Center

Y’all know I love to do local places – This is one I really love to take Hudson to! It’s fun, educational AND health conscious so wanted to share them with y’all incase you’re looking for some fun places to hit up during these cold Colorado winters!

You walk in and it just screams interstellar.. There are themed sections everywhere! You see scientific experiment games based on Archimedes’ work, a launch lab where kids can use different levels of strength to get a rocket ship to different planets, a ballistics zone where kids can run, play, climb and use air launchers to shoot balls – And SO much more!!

Wherever you look there’s STEM play and that’s an amazing feeling as a parent to have the opportunity to have your kids learn as they play! I believe STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) is so crucial for children, especially at a young age as it allows their minds to bend and flex in ways they wouldn’t be able to ordinarily.

They have hourly planetarium shows in an amazing blow up igloo which is so fun for the kids!

Something all parents can appreciate is the extreme cleanliness of the entire facility – I never feel as though I’ve got to give Hudson a bath after he leaves! Another parent pleaser is the amazing full espresso bar with delicious coffees and healthy snacks!

The owners are so friendly and passionate about their creation and they should be. You can easily spend hours here.. So if you’re looking for a fun, indoor place to take your stir crazy kiddos – Bring them here!! You won’t be disappointed and they’ll be begging you to come back!

2018 Holiday Guide – Six Under $100

I’ve never done a Holiday Guide but I’ve seen a ton of them lately so decided to do my own.. These are a few things I’ve either bought or things I know I’d LOVE 😉 Still looking for last minute holiday buys under $100? I’ve got you covered with a few that are currently HOT!

  1. Cooks 2.5L Air Fryer ($59.99) – I’ve never had an air fryer but have ALWAYS wanted one. A healthy way to fry my food?! YES, PLEASE! I’ve had many friends with them that say they’re incredible. Crunchy sweet potato fries, crispy wings, yummy chicken nuggets for the kids – EFFORTLESSLY. No hot oven on, no unhealthy deep frying just a bit of oil and air doing the job ;). This is something I’d LOVE to add to our healthy kitchen!
  2. North Pole Trading Co Chenille Reverse to Sherpa Throw ($39.99) – Super comfortable sherpa blanket. What more is there to say? I’m a blanket FIEND. Seriously, I’ve got a problem and this one is just screaming my name.. Anyone else?!
  3. Red Dead Redemption 2 ($59.98) – Y’all know me.. I’m a huge gamer and one game that I am desperate to play is RDR2.. It’s REALLY popular right now and it looks hilariously fun.. It’s so hard during the holiday season not to buy stuff for yourself but you just hope and pray it’s one of the gifts under the tree for you 😉 Have a gamer in your life? GET THEM THIS GAME. You may not see them for weeks but they’ll love you for life 😉
  4. Pouchee Avi Crossbody Handbag/Organizer Purse ($47.99) – My favorite purse of ALL time. I’ve gotten so many compliments on mine over the years. It’s a crossbody with a built in wallet. Leaves tons of room for whatever else you need. Very practical, very fashionable and super affordable!
  5. Portable Blender Smoothie Juicer USB Rechargeable ($39.99) – A portable blender that’s USB rechargeable.. The possibilities! When traveling you can plug it in your car and have a healthy smoothie to go. At work? Charge it with your computer and make a healthy smoothie in the office! (Try not to annoy your co-workers 😉 )
  6. Vacuum Sealer By NutriChef ($59.99) – We love to get meat on sale. How much easier would it make freezing with a vacuum sealer?! Found this one on Amazon and it’s WAY more affordable than I thought it would be.. May have to add this to my push gift request 😉

Six amazing ideas and all for under $100. Let me know if any of y’all get any of these for your family/friends and what their reactions were! Happy Holidays, y’all! ❥ 

South Dakota Vacation

Have you ever taken a trip and loved it so much you have to go again in the same year? Well that’s how I feel about South Dakota.. If y’all recall I went back in May with Hudson and my little sister, Eulalia. We had so much fun we had to go back but this time I was taking Hudson, my Husband Brent, my Father in Law Charles and my step-daughter Marret. None of them had ever been to South Dakota and always thought it was desert-y.. Man were they in for a surprise..

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I planned the whole trip and booked the same Roosevelt Inn we stayed in earlier in the year because it was so amazing! We made the 5 1/2 hour drive from Colorado to Keystone, SD (The BEST city to stay in because it’s 3 miles from Mount Rushmore and about 25 miles from Rapid City but it still so quiet and gorgeous!) We arrived at our incredible hotel, Roosevelt Inn and were as usual greeted by the amazing staff there (They even recognized me!) and made it up to our amazing loft bedroom! Two queen beds downstairs and two twin beds upstairs.. The kids were SO excited to have their own space… And TV 😉

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We didn’t want to waste anytime at all so we headed straight out from the hotel to see the sights.. We headed through the gorgeous black hills to the famous Reptile Gardens, it holds the world record for most reptile species on their grounds.. The gardens are gorgeous and so well taken care of.. Even in the beginning of the cold season their flowers were blooming and beautiful.

They’ve got incredibly large tortoises for the kids the pet and pythons to feel.. Inside their monster dome they’ve got the most beautiful exhibits holding scary yet amazing snakes, crocodiles, alligators and more! It was SO cool for the kids to see up close!

After exploring for an hour and a half we decided to head out to Rapid City for a look at their Dinosaur Park (Y’all know how obsessed Hudson is with dinosaurs 😉 ) They were HUGE statues made in 1936 for the incoming tourism and the kids are able to climb, learn and slide down their tails! It’s at the top of a large hill smack in the middle of Rapid City so you can see the city in all directions. It was awe-inspiring!

We decided to head back to the hotel after a long day of driving and exploring – When you drive into Keystone you feel like you’re in a quiet, nestled mountain town with cute shops and amazing food.. But the best part is driving up to our gorgeous light house looking hotel.. The Roosevelt Inn is exactly how it sounds.. A hotel inspired by Theodore Roosevelt.. With quotes on the walls, decoration inspired by his interests and even a “Selfie with Teddy” spot 😉

We settled in and headed down to their wonderful heated pool and spent an hour splashing and playing without anyone else! It was a wonderful way to unwind after a long fun day..

The next morning we were greeted by amazing smells coming from the lobby. They’ve got a complimentary breakfast every morning and it’s amazing!! Always stocked, always delicious and always something different!

After filling our bellies with a hearty breakfast we began our next day adventures! Our first stop was right down the road at Mount Rushmore.. It was a little chilly outside so it was actually really quiet! We parked and walked up to the monuments and took in their grand and glorious faces.. It’s not like anything you’ve ever seen and won’t know until you see it!!

We shopped at their decently priced gift shop then headed to our next fun-stination (See what I did there? 😉 )

I’d ALWAYS wanted to visit the Cosmos Mystery Area.. I’d seen it in a text book when I was younger and always found it’s story so fascinating!

Their history states: “In 1952, two college boys searched the Black Hills looking for the perfect spot to build a summer cabin. Upon their search, they stumbled into the mysterious world of the Cosmos.

The old cabin areas especially piqued their interest as the laws of logic and physics seemed to be turned upside-down. They continued to experiment and develop the demonstrations until they eventually opened their discovery to the public in 1953.

Come experience for yourself what continues to amaze and baffle visitors for over 65 years.”

It is just as mysterious as it sounds.. Balls rolled upwards, water drained up, people were taller standing on different but same levels and it was so disorienting your head would spin! It’s like nothing you’ll ever experience anywhere else..

It was my step-daughter’s favorite part of the trip because it was just so different!! They had friendly staff and a cute dog named Albert to meet you once you were finished too 😉 We’ll absolutely be back next time we visit!

Once we left we had some delicious lunch at The Front Porch and it was some of the best food we had the entire trip!! ❤

After a quick nap at the hotel we walked around Keystone’s cute little shops for a few hours then ate some delicious dinner at the Ruby House for my birthday dinner! It’s a gorgeous old fashioned parlor themed restaurant with old paintings and guns hung all over the wall.

We were exhausted from the day so went back to our hotel and snuggled into our comfortable warm beds eager for the next days adventures..

We woke up to another morning of amazing breakfast which kickstarted our last day of fun!

I’d never seen so much fog than we had that morning! It was dense and really hard to see but we weren’t going to let that ruin our fun.. We drove into Rapid City for some sight seeing then on our way back decided to stop at the Dinosaur Museum.. They had over 50 life size dinosaur replicas.. Hudson was in HEAVEN! There was also a spooky mirror maze the kids wanted to go through and it was crazy cool! We were all so disoriented haha!!

After our dinosaur adventure we headed to my favorite part of our trip… Bear Country USA! It’s a drive thru park where animals roam free.. We had bears in the road, wolves ran right passed the car, elks were grazing and so much more… The fog had lightened up just a little but it actually made the experience a little more creepy and COOL! It was $55 for our vehicle but it was SO worth it.. Never will we ever get a chance to see a bear up THAT close again.. (Hopefully :p ) *I’ll add the bear photo as soon as I get it from my Husband’s phone :P*

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We wrapped up our trip and headed back to the hotel for naps, swimming and their game room!

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We were sad it was our last day.. So we went to do one last fun activity with the kids.. Some cosmic putt-putt at Putz n Glo.

After a fantastic night’s sleep we had one last breakfast, said our goodbyes to our amazing Roosevelt Inn staff and headed home.. This is a trip we’ll always remember.. It was the perfect weather and it was the end of their season so everything was quiet and slow.. Now that we’re back to fast paced Colorado living I’m already missing the sights and lifestyle South Dakota brings but we’ve decided to make a trip up every year as a new tradition.. And another tradition will be for us to always stay at the Roosevelt Inn because it was by far the most beautiful hotel we saw the whole time and added to the experience with it being president themed..

We highly recommend these adventures to anyone.. For only 5 1/2 hours away from Denver it makes for a perfect quick weekend getaway for families, couples or anyone wanting to slow down a little!

Thank you South Dakota for the best family vacation we’ve ever taken… We’ll be back!

Boulder Clean Natural Cleaners

In our household we exclusively use eco-friendly, kid-safe products. As I’ve said many times before I believe that it is just as important what you put on your body as what you put in it. Our skin can easily absorb harsh chemicals – You wouldn’t ingest bleach would you? Then why spray it all over your home only to have it produce harmful fumes and toxic surfaces?

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My kids play in every inch of our home, so I would never want to douse it with chemicals I knew could easily get onto their hands and possibly in their mouths/eyes/nose/whatever! All of these and more are reasons to choose a natural cleaner. After trying all of the different natural cleaners I could I found that my favorite was always Boulder Clean. They’ve got all the items needed to tackle any type of house cleaning project: Laundry items, dishwashing products, soaps, cleaners and more!

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My dishes always come out cleaner, my clothes always come out smelling fresh and are safe for my kids’ skin, and their cleaner sprays smell amazing all with different surface cleaning specialties!

It took me awhile to adjust to the natural cleaners when I first got into it because I always thought bleach means clean but once you do your research and realize how much of a difference it makes for the environment and your families health you’ll never go back.. And Boulder Clean has their ingredients transparently listed on their website so you know exactly what you’re using!

Now, I want to help jump start some of y’all’s future in eco-friendly natural cleaners with a…..

GIVEAWAY!

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With back-to-school around I want to help you give your kids some fresh, amazing smelling clothes they’ll feel comfortable and irritation-free in! I’ll be giving away an entire laundry bundle to one lucky winner! This will include their Original Natural Laundry DetergentFabric Softener Dryer Spray, and Oxi-Smart Pre-Treat Stain Remover SprayI use these for my family and they’re incredible (Especially the Stain Remover Spray! I actually spilled red wine on my favorite white shirt and it took it out like friggin’ magic!)

Giveaway is hosted on my Instagram so head there to enter! Contest will end September 29th at 12:00PM MST so get those entries in! ❤

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