Pan-Glazed Pork Chops: A Breakdown of Deliciousness

Disclosure: I was not compensated for this post in any form.

Before moving to Maine and venturing out "on my own" 3000+ miles from home, I'd never really cooked. I mean actual cooking. Not microwaving a premade dinner or "making" macaroni and cheese. Actual, from-scratch cooking. Everything had previously been store-bought processed foods, meals made by other people, or "meals" like Hamburger Helper.

Next step: The Everything Goes Into The Oven stage. Chicken, potatoes, roasted veggies, and processed boxed dinners for the oven, to name a few. This included pork chops and steak, too, which never turned out as I'd hoped. Oven-baked non-poultry/fish meats tend to come out too dry and tough for my palette, even when coated with the almighty Shake 'n Bake.


Enter: My first (and definitely not last) experience with pan-frying pork chops! I'd always been afraid that they wouldn't cook through and I'd end up with some parasitic disease as a result. Let me tell you, invest in a meat thermometer. It eases food anxieties away!

Annnnyway, here's my step-by-step breakdown of 

How To Successfully Make Pan-Glazed Pork Chops 
with White Wine and Caramelized Onions

Live Q & A: Find Out If Your Student Athlete Is At Risk For Sudden Heart Failure

Disclosure: I received no compensation for this post. PartnersHub has provided me with the following information and images to pass along to you, my readers.

PartnersHub has asked me to share information about this very important event, and I am happy to oblige. Do you have a student or young athlete in your family? This free live Q&A session could be a lifesaver! Read below to get an idea of what to expect, or click on the photo below to find out more info and RSVP to attend.


PartnersHub is working with the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center on a free live Q and A to help active families understand the risk factors of sudden heart failure in student athletes.


Top 5 risk factors for sudden heart failure in student athletes:1. Family history of sudden death.
2. Fainting or family history of fainting.
3. Family history of arrhythmias or heart muscle disease.
4. Participation in sports (particularly sports that require a burst of activity like basketball, hockey and football).
5. Athlete has gone through puberty (an athlete’s body is stronger at this point and has power during the burst of activity).


DID YOU KNOW?*
If defibrillation is administered within one minute of collapse, the survival rate for sudden heart failure goes up 90 percent. “Timing is key to survival. Waiting even 10 minutes to defibrillate drops the chances of survival to 10 percent,” says John Lynn Jefferies, MD.


This issue has really hit home for all of us here at Partnershub recently and we want to do what we can to help shed light on this issue. 

This is a free, live, on-line Q and A where you and your readers can ask questions in real time. It’s a chance to talk to knowledgeable and experienced doctors and get answers right on the spot.

The Q and A takes place April 9th from 7:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. EST with Jeffrey Towbin, MD and John Lynn Jefferies, MD.

Family is the most important thing in the world, so if we can help one person with this chat then we’ve made a huge difference! Check out the link below for more information!

*RSVP Here!* : *
http://liveevent.cincinnatichildrensblog.org/events/heart-failure-athletes



~Sam

Easter: How much do you know?

Do you eat the ears of a chocolate bunny first? You're not alone...76% of people (myself included) are right along side 'ya!  Check out these fun- and sometimes disturbing -factoids about Easter Sunday.

fun facts about easter

Easy paper Easter egg garland #decoration

I've been looking for a few simple crafts for Jace and I to do for each holiday. I mean really simple. Like, coloring-and-that's-it simple. Jace doesn't have a very long attention span at the moment, but what 2-year old does?


One of my favorite ways to decorate for the minor holidays with little ones is to print out a few free coloring pages from the 'net, color and cut 'em out and make an easy-peasy garland for the doorway between our two most traveled rooms: the kitchen and living room.

Win a library of I See Me! personalized books in the Raising A Reader {Sweepstakes}

Disclosure: I received no compensation for this post. Enjoy!

Back at Christmas time of 2012 I was introduced to a truly unique and wonderful company, I See Me! Personalized Children's Books.  I was given the chance to review a beautiful personalized Christmas book for Jace, and he absolutely loves it! 

Click here to enter!
I See Me! wants to give YOU the chance to win a mini library of your own! For only one more week, you can submit a simple entry form for your chance to win a library of 10 (that's right, TEN!) personalized I See Me! books for the little one in your life. The best part? There will be 5 winners! Wow! 

Just click on the photo above (or here) to be taken to the easy entry form, and good luck!

~Sam


Rent your used textbooks to other students and make $$$ with the RentBack program from Campus Book Rentals! #sponsored

Disclosure: I received compensation for this post. These opinions are 100% my own and are not influenced by compensation. 
I only share what I love!


You might remember a post I made last year around the start of the Fall school semester about Campus Book Rentals and their amazing program enabling students to "borrow" textbooks for a fraction of the cost of purchasing them. Great idea, right? Well, they've gone and one-upped themselves this year with a new program that allows students to make 2-4 times the amount of money that a bookstore buyback program would offer: RentBack.


Spring has sprung! Is your garden ready? #WingsofLife

Disclosure: I received no form of compensation for this post.

Is everyone as happy to welcome the new season as I am? Granted, there's still fresh snow on my doorstep...but I am willing to look past the cold fluff in hope of a warmer, sunny near-future. Our landlords have a small yearly vegetable garden, from which we are often offered a few yummy parcels throughout the year. Since we are currently renting and sharing a yard, this may not be the year I start a garden for myself, but one can hope!

Do you own or tend to a garden, large or small? You'll love these friendly garden tips and gorgeous flower photo inspirations from Disneynature's Wings of Life, which premiers in Blu-ray combo pack and HD Digital on April 16th!



Any advice from fellow gardeners out there? What were the easiest veggies for you to start gardening? 
Did you bring in a large amount of crops in your first year?

Happy Spring!
~Sam

Try truly eco-friendly products with Conscious Box! {Giveaway}

If you haven't noticed by now, "greenwashing" is everywhere. It's in your local supermarket and most definitely online. "Greenwashing" is the use of deceptive marketing strategies to imply that something is eco-friendly when in reality...not so much. Even the use of the word "green" can be misleading...think about it. Would you rather buy a bottle of cleaner labeled as "green cleaner" or it's obviously chemical-laden counterpart? 

Conscious Box has made it's mission to educate the masses on the topic of greenwashing and how to avoid it! Conscious Box is a subscription box service offering 10-20 sample products each month from ethical, honest, and sustainable businesses. Everything from snackables to health and beauty products can be found in these monthly treasures! 

Conscious Box!
And the best part? Everything about Conscious Box stands behind their commitment and ethics. They utilize eco-friendly packaging, shipping and fair labor practices, and hand-choose companies to include in their boxes that share the same values and devotion to staying natural. 

Conscious Box costs just $19.95 per month (including $7.95 shipping) and can open you up to a world of green products that you never even knew existed! And it gets even better! Enter the code DISCOVERNATURAL at checkout to save 50% off any Conscious Box subscription!

Serial Access Mom has partnered-up with Conscious Box to offer one lucky reader a THREE month subscription to the Conscious Box! Lucky you!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


~Sam

The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey is coming to DVD and Blu-ray on 3/19, HUZZAH! {Giveaway}

I'm a major nerd mama. For realz. I play Magic: The Gathering fairly often and enjoy my share of games and general nerdery. I can't even begin to tell you how excited I am to announce that J.R.R. Tolkien's The Hobbit directed by Peter Jackson is making it's big debut on Blu-ray and DVD March 19th, 2013! 

J.R.R. Tolkien’s epic adventure follows the journey of Bilbo Baggins, who is swept into an amazing quest to reclaim the lost Dwarf Kingdom of Erebor from the fearsome dragon Smaug. Approached out of the blue by the wizard Gandalf the Grey, Bilbo finds himself joining a company of thirteen dwarves led by the legendary warrior, Thorin Oakenshield. Their journey will take them into the Wild; through treacherous lands swarming with Goblins and Orcs, deadly Wargs and Sorcerers.


I've pre-ordered a copy for myself already, I can't wait! Check out the fun app above for a Hobbit quiz, information on a few of the creatures of Middle Earth, watch the trailer, and more! 

Thanks to PartnersHub and Warner Bros, one lucky Serial Access Mom fan will win their own Blu-ray/DVD combo pack of The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


~Sam


Disclosure: I am working with Warner Bros on this giveaway. They have provided me with these assets to share with you...so enjoy!

The Hallmark Channel Premiers Return to Nim's Island with Bindi Irwin on 3/15! {Giveaway}

The Hallmark Channel and PartnersHub are proud to announce the premier of Return to Nim's Island on March 15th, 2013 at 7/8pm central! 


Return to Nim’s Island, the sequel to Walden Media’s 2008 box office hit Nim’'s Island, picks up the story a few years later with 14-year-old Nim (Bindi Irwin) more determined than ever to protect her island and the animals that call it home. With ruthless resort developers and greedy wildlife poachers threatening the existence she loves, Nim realizes she and her animal pals can’t defend their home alone. To save her island, she is forced to combine forces with an outsider: Edmund, a runaway from the mainland. Only with his help does she stand a chance of stopping the villains from dismantling her world.
Return to Nim'’s Island marks the debut of Walden Family Theater, presented by Walmart and P&G.  The new destination for family entertainment, exclusively on Hallmark Channel.
In addition to catching it on TV, you can also pick up a Blu-ray/DVD combo pack just 4 days after the premier, exclusively at Walmart stores!

One lucky Serial Access Mom reader will win their very own copy of Return to Nim's Island on Blu-ray/DVD combo pack! Enter theRafflecopter form below for your chance to win!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


~Sam

Special Edition February Starbox by Lauren Clark {Review}

Another month has gone by, perfect timing for a new Starbox subscription from Starlooks! February's Starbox is a special edition curated by professional makeup artist Lauren Clark and featuring her favorite Starlooks products. 

Have you checked out the Starlooks website yet?  For just $15 + $1.98 shipping each month, you can subscribe to Starbox and receive a box in the mail filled with makeup goodies! Each month's box comes with 3-4 full size makeup items plus fun surprises and tips of the trade for application. Here's my take on the February special edition box: