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7.28.2014

Super Moist & Delicious {GLUTEN FREE} Chocolate Cupcakes with Decadent Coconut Icing Recipe & Kiva Cacao powder review


Super Moist & Delicious GLUTEN FREE Chocolate Cupcakes with Decadent Coconut Icing Recipe


I know there are hundreds of cupcake recipes online, but THIS is the BEST chocolate cupcake recipe out there. Not only is this recipe delicious, it's easy to follow! HELLO HAPPY DAY! Also, the cupcake recipe is butter-free, which doesn't exactly make it "healthy" - but it is healthier than some recipes! I use coconut oil, almond milk, and gluten-free bisquik flour because that's what I always use but feel free to substitute. If you decide to whip this recipe together, be sure to let me know how much you love your batch of cupcakes!

Remember that Pier 1 Imports party I hosted earlier this summer?
This is the recipe I used to make those gorgeous cupcakes!



Super Moist & Delicious GLUTEN FREE Chocolate Cupcakes with Decadent Coconut Icing Recipe

Super Moist + Delicious Chocolate Cupcake Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose gluten free flour 
1 cup brown sugar
1 cup granulated sugar
¾ cup KIVA cacao powder
2 teaspoons baking powder 
1½ teaspoons baking soda 
1 teaspoon salt 
1 cup almond milk 
½ cup coconut oil 
2 eggs 
2 teaspoons vanilla extract 
{added at the end} 1 cup boiling water
(makes 18 cupcakes)

Super Moist & Delicious GLUTEN FREE Chocolate Cupcakes with Decadent Coconut Icing Recipe


Decadent Coconut Icing ingredients:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at room temperature
1 package neufchatel cheese, at room temperature
1/8 cup sour cream {you could also use greek yogurt or the like}
1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/4 cups confectioners sugar
1/2 cup sweetened flaked coconut (or to taste)
(This really only makes enough icing for about 14-15 cupcakes, hubby eats the extras with peanut butter- LOL!)


Super Moist & Delicious GLUTEN FREE Chocolate Cupcakes with Decadent Coconut Icing Recipe

The Delicious {GF} Chocolate Cake recipe:

Pre-heat the oven to 350Âș F. Either grease cupcake pan or use liners (I highly recommend silicone liners, but to each their own). This can also be made in cake pan without a problem!

Super Moist & Delicious GLUTEN FREE Chocolate Cupcakes with Decadent Coconut Icing Recipe
{I also pour a glass of wine & sip on it at this point, but that's totally optional! LOL}

In a mixing bowl - add GF flour, sugars, cacao powder, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Then add almond milk, coconut oil, eggs, and vanilla to flour mixture and mix together on medium speed until well mixed. 

Reduce the speed to low and add boiling water to the cake batter a little bit at a time.
Once the water is all mixed in, beat on high for about 1 minute. 

I use a pitcher to pour the batter into the baking cups, because it's a rather thin, runny consistency.
Bake for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted in the center of each cupcake comes out clean.
Remove your cupcakes from the oven and allow them to chill. Remove from the pan and cool completely. Frost cake with some delicious coconut icing.

Super Moist & Delicious GLUTEN FREE Chocolate Cupcakes with Decadent Coconut Icing Recipe

Decadent Coconut Icing recipe:
Cut neufchatel cheese into smaller chunks. Mix butter in bowl with an electric mixer until creamy. Mix in sour cream and vanilla, then mix in neufchatel cheese, piece by piece. Be careful how long you beat it, if you run your mixer too long the icing will be thin. 

Add about a third of the confectioners sugar and beat on low until just mixed in, scrape utensils clean as needed. Gradually add in the rest of the sugar, mixing just until smooth. 

I just fill a ziploc with icing and use it as an icing bag. Let the cupcakes cool, then apply icing (and garnishes as you can see in some of my photos).

Super Moist & Delicious GLUTEN FREE Chocolate Cupcakes with Decadent Coconut Icing Recipe

Time for dessert!

Enjoy!


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Kiva Cacao Powder Review  Kiva Cacao Powder Review
Ever heard of KIVA cacao powder? It's organic and delicious!

This delicious ingredient is 100% Raw, Vegan, Non-GMO, Pure Organic Cacao Powder.

Kiva Cacao Powder Review

Cacao has been consumed by the Mayan and Aztec cultures for centuries due to its invigorating health properties, plus it's just absolutely delicious. Cacao is one of the richest sources of antioxidants found in nature and is a great source of magnesium, dietary fiber, iron, zinc, and potassium. Kiva cacao powder is made from only the finest hand-selected premium Criollo cacao beans from Ecuador. The low-temperature, minimal processing Kiva uses protects the cacaos natural nutrients and flavor, the result is a delicious powder that is just as nature intended, with no sugars or fillers! I used to just use whatever I could find but now that I have tried Kiva, my taste buds can tell the difference - this stuff is RICH but in the best way possible! I love Kiva and won't be changing brands! 


You can buy a bag of your own here:


I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com.
Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Zuca Mini Travel Case Giveaway {ends 8/12}

ZUCA Mini Travel Case Giveaway Image 
Welcome to the ZUCA Mini Giveaway Ends 8/12 at midnight CST
Sponsored: by ZUCA

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life is excited to be partnering up with several other great blogs to bring you this fun giveaway.  If you like you may head over and read Amy's review of the ZUCA Mini and see what all they have to offer a traveling toddler.   

After having my niece visit, I learned just how much it takes to travel with a little one - these cute little mini suitcases are the perfect solution for the little extras your little one's require. Plus, they are adorable and perfect for a little one to "help" you with.

*Giveaway ends August 12th at 11:59pm CT. Open to US residents, ages 18+. Only one entrant per household, per address. Winner is subject to eligibility verification. Chances of winning depends solely on amount of total entries. Enter using the giveaway form below. Good luck!
 
Disclosure: All thoughts and opinions are at the discretion of this writer and may not be the same as your own. This contest is in no way associated with Facebook, Google, Twitter, Pinterest or any other social media network. This disclosure is done in accordance with the FTC 10 FCR, Part 255 Guides Concerning the use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising. For questions, comments, or to have your product featured on Holyjeans N’ My Favorite Things, email Amy at pnppowell09@gmail.com.

#RetroEyeWorks has the hipster look you want! {Retro Eye Works glasses review}




I was recently presented with the opportunity to work with #RetroEyeWorks, such a fun company with a great selection of unique and stylish glasses! I like to think of them as hipster glasses, I know some may dislike this label but I think it's cool to be "hip" so "sorry-boutcha" if you don't like the therm. Although my glasses aren't prescription yet these decorative frames are so much fun and I'll be looking into replacing my current frames with a set of these - Plus at the prices of $99 for THREE pairs - you literally can't beat it! If you aren't sure about the frames, you can also try three for FREE!

Retro Eyeworks is here to revolutionize the way you think about glasses. With over 25 years in the eyeware industry, they offer high quality eco-friendly frames for affordable prices - this little gal's perfect description of an eyeware company! They believe people should think of glasses as an accessory, being sure they match with their outfit, matching the frames to their mood. Fashionista's delight - you can change your glasses just as often as you change out your wardrobe!

I tried out the Beverly Black, Hollywood Black, and Westwood Blue... I'm pleased with all of the frames. Although I'm wishing I would have gotten a red or purple pair instead of the blue, they are super similar to the Hollywood Black - both pairs are awesome, just wish I had provided myself with more variety. The frames are funky and fun, perfect for the trendy girl or the fashionable gentleman.I actually had family in town the day I received these and although we had a few giggles, it was fun to get to see the frames on different faces - some are definitely made for fuller faces, some for smaller. I highly recommend the Beverly Black cat eye pair if you have small feminine features, they looked so cute on my sister-in-law. The Hollywood Black are very "Clark Kent"-esque but fun and look good on a fuller face like mine. The Westwood Blue is very similar in shape to the Hollywood Black but I think are slightly more feminine than their counterpart.

You can check out all of the frames they offer and get some of your own here!



I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com.
Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

The Beachin' Event - Ultimate Beach Accessories Prize Pack Giveaway {ends 8/11}

Summer Is HERE,
which means it's time for The Beachin' Event!!

Andersons Angels, Joy Of Momma Joyner and The More The Merrier love the Summer Season! To celebrate, they have teamed up with an awesome group of bloggers and wonderful sponsors to bring you great products that anyone would need for a great beach trip or beach themed party! ONE WINNER will walk away with this whole prize package worth over $800! 

As you all know, I'm a totally beach bum, hence my instagram name - @sunkissed_sweetheart (shameless plug). I'm obsessed with spending time on the beach but we all know extra accessories and toys are always fun a the beach... Luckily I've teamed up with a group of awesome bloggers to provide you with all kinds of goodies. Which item do you want to win the most?

 
The Prize Package includes items from these sponsors:
beachin collage
Block Island Organics – SPF 15 Lotion and After Sun Gel – $46
Dream Team Pets – Dream Pet of Choice – $20
Blue Rhino – Mr BarBQ Grill Tool Set – $
Frogglez - Frogglez Goggles of Choice – $20
The Orb Factory – Make Your Own Glitter Chalk Set – $15
Wusic – Power Bank Charger – $50
Pint Size Projects – Beach Theme Activity Kit – $28
Kiss My Itch Goodbye – Itch Cream – $9
Boogie Board– Jot 8.5 eWriter– $38
Sand Gone – Sand Gone – $15
Margaritaville – Bali Drink Maker – $400
ezydog - dog life vest – $42
Coleman – puddle jumper – $20
Chichanella Bella – Sunkissed Sweetheart Swim Suit & Bonnett – $98
Beach Road Designs - Beach Sheet - $49
So, what do you think? Ready to enter? It’s simple! 
Just fill out the Giveaway Tools Form below. There are plenty of entry options, and the more you do, the better your chances of winning are!
The Beachin' Event Prize Package is open to all legal residents of the United States who are 18-years-old or older. This event will run from 12:00am EST Monday, July 28, 2014 through 11:59pm EST Monday, August 11, 2014. Best Of Luck!
Disclosure: Anderson's Angels, Joy Of Momma Joyner, The More The Merrier, and all other participating bloggers are not responsible for prize fulfillment. The sponsors will send the prizes directly to the winner. We are also not responsible for any unfortunate accidents that result from the use of any of these products.

7.27.2014

Floathletika Yoga Mat Review & #EverybodyYOGA Challenge coming in September


I'm so excited to announce I'll be hosting 
The #EverybodyYOGA Challenge in September!


#EverybodyYOGAchallenge hosted by Lauren Paints

What exactly is 
The #everybodyYOGA Challenge?

This Yoga challenge will be different than any other you may have seen in the past - it's going to be for every body type! I believe Yoga should be fun and feel good, that's what it's really all about! So this challenge is about having fun and feeling good as well! Although some of the poses will be more advanced, this isn't necessarily about perfecting your form - it's about trying something new or just having fun in positions you are familiar with for those that practice Yoga regularly... For those of you that are brand new to Yoga I'll be offering less complicated options so that you can eventually build into the more complicated poses. I'm not a yoga teacher, so I'm not saying my form is perfect either... I'm just a yoga student that is passionate enough about yoga to make it into a fun challenge for everyone! I'm excited about the challenge and hope everyone else is too!

How can you participate and enter to win some goodies?

I'll be posting a challenge guide on August 31st to present you with your poses for the entire month of September. I'll also be recording videos and taking pictures and sharing them with you daily - I would love for you all to share your photos/videos too, share them on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook,  or Pinterest - if you use the hashtag #everybodyYOGA AND add & address me by my username on any social media platforms you will be entered to win!

You can add me here to get a head start:
Instagram  |  Twitter  |  Facebook Pinterest 

Don't forget to leave a comment below, 
or on any of my above profiles, 
to let me know you are in!

I'll be posting more details in the upcoming weeks but during the challenge I'll be rocking some awesome yoga wear and guess what?! You'll have the chance to win some cute Yoga wear too! I'm also in negotiations with several other companies for some other amazing prizes, including cash & a FloAthletika PREMIUM Yoga Mat!

Would you want to win a mat in my #EverybodyYOGA challenge?
Tweet @Floathletika and let them know!


Which leads me to my review of FloAthletika's PREMIUM Yoga Mat!

Eagle Pose for #EverybodyYOGAchallenge hosted by Lauren Paints

This FloAthletika Premium Yoga Mat is designed with Yoga lovers in mind. It is super cushy and thick, while offering just the right amount of support. It comes in a gorgeous deep blue shade with a pretty light blue underside.

FloAthletika Yoga Mat for #EverybodyYOGAchallenge hosted by Lauren Paints
TPE Yoga Mats are non-toxic and contain no PVC, which makes them ompletely biodegradable and extremely durable! The perfect combination for a yoga mat! They repel moisture, block bacteria, and stay fresh, unlike PVC Foam mats, which you have to dispose of after just a few months. If your current yoga mat is made from PVC, it DOES need to be replaced - think of all the sweat, bacteria, and toxins that are absorbed into the mat -- thank god for this mat that endures it all and still feels (and is) completely fresh! Unlike other big companies, FlöAthletika was founded by fitness and Yoga enthusiasts who could not find a mat good enough for them. They all worked together to create a mat that all yogis love, while also providing a 100% guarantee on all of their products because they understand how important a reliable accessories are to your practice. 
 Corpse Pose for #EverybodyYOGAchallenge hosted by Lauren Paints
One surprising thing I love about the mat is that it is double sided. Each side features a different, specially designed texture to help beginners and experts during extra tough practices.  These mats are completely reversible, extremely light weight (at just over 2 lbs) and convenient for yoga on the go - which is totally my style! Perfect for all yogis and all levels of practice, I love using it while practicing headstands/handstand.  It is also the best option for your everyday workout, I sometimes use it while doing insanity just so I have extra traction. I must say this mat is MUCH better than the other one's I have purchased in the past. So thankful I was given the opportunity to review such a great item and I can't wait to give you the chance to win one in September!

Child's Pose #EverybodyYOGAchallenge hosted by Lauren Paints
Can't wait to win one of these fantastic mats in my 
#EverybodyYOGA Challenge in September? 

You can buy one here:



Disclaimer: Affiliated links are listed above. Also, I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe my readers will enjoy!

7.23.2014

#WordlessWednesday - Double Dose

I had family in town yet again last week, so I skipped #WW.
{july in florida - what can I say?} :) 


Here's a double dose for you:

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life

Lauren Paints | a beautiful life
Lauren Paints | a beautiful life
Lauren Paints | a beautiful life


Happy Wednesday, ladies & gents! :)