Sunday, May 19, 2013

{#Review + #Giveaway} I Took The Gorton's Seafood (@gortonsseafood ) Challenge & You Can Too!


Gortons Seafood Challenge, Gorton's Seafood

I am a seafood lover, and when I go on vacation it's my favorite part of being near the sea. I like tropical vacations, I guess it's from growing up in the North East where it's cold more months of the year than it is hot. For me a getaway means being by the Beach: palm trees, drinks served in coconuts and some kind of seafood = VACATION.

But when there is no time for a getaway, or I'm nowhere near the beach, or just want seafood for dinner I have always turned to Gorton's Seafood, much like the commercials, I do trust the Gorton's Fisherman, it's what I grew up on when I was younger and the brand I still buy today.

When Gorton's put out the Seafood Challenge, I couldn't resist participating! Gorton's is encouraging families to eat seafood twice a week and they have a collection of recipes as well as 20 products that are 200 calories or less to help encourage a healthy diet!

Gortons, Gorton's Seafood, Grilled Salmon, Fish

There are numerous benefits to eating fish:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - They contain Omega-3 fatty acids (my personal fave, Salmon, is very high in Omega-3's)

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Promote Heart Health

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Decrease Blood Pressure, triglycerides and cholesterol levels

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Improve Arthritis and Joint Pain

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Lessens symptoms of Depression

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Lessens symptoms of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Supports Eye Health

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Enhances Brain Growth and Development

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Aids Brain Growth in unborn babies, infants and kids

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Decreases the risks for certain Cancers (We have done quite a bit of Cancer related Coverage this week, if you missed our coverage, read HERE and HERE)

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Reduces the symptoms of Alzheimer's Disease

Try it in a RECIPE:

Part of the challenge was to try out a Gorton's Seafood under 200 Calories Product in a recipe, and I prepared one of my favorites: SHRIMP and SAUSAGE STUFFED MUSHROOMS:

Shrimp and Sausage Stuffed Mushrooms
@Wizard Recipes

But I substituted my recipe and instead of using the shrimp from the local fish market I used Gorton's Shrimp Scampi for an extra kick of flavor!


Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1 box of Gorton's Shrimp Scampi
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1 Kielbasa or Andouille Sausage
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1 medium yellow or red onion, diced
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1 small green pepper, diced
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1 tsp of diced Garlic
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1 tbsp worcestershire sauce
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1tbsp balsamic vinegar
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1tsp of AllSpice
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1 box of Panko
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1tbsp Mayo
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 1 tbsp Mustard


Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Pan Fry Chopped/Diced Sausage until done, set aside

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Saute onion, pepper and garlic

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Add Chopped/Diced Shrimp

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - A bit before the shrimp are actually done, mix (Sausage, Shrimp, onion, Pepper Garlic) into a bowl, add Mayo, Mustard, worcestershire sauce and balsamic and mix together evenly, I prefer to mix in my Panko, but if you prefer the Panko on top and not mixed into the mixture then go ahead and spoon the mix into your preferred mushrooms (organic, portobello etc), if you prefer Panko mixed in like I do, all you need to do is sprinkle with a little four cheese mix (if you don't like cheese or don't wish to add cheese you can skip this step) and if you didn't mix in the panko, you would now put it on top of the mushrooms.

Serving Suggestion: You can plate them with sliced lemon as shown above. If you do not eat meat you can omit the sausage and just add extra veggies!

I also used the Gorton's Tilapia to make Fish Tacos, and those definitely went over well!

Gortons Tilapia Fish Tacos Plated

These can also be made with the Crunchy Breaded Tilapia Fillets for a bolder, crunchier taco!

Win It! - Our friends at Gorton's want you to take the Seafood Challenge too!


1 Lucky Ascending Butterfly will win a Gorton's Seafood Prize Pack which includes:
  • 5 full-value product coupons so you can sample several different 20 at 200 products
  • 1 Gorton's branded apron
  • 2 Gorton's branded oven mitts
  • 1 Gorton's branded spatula
Get Social/Save Money:

You can get social with Gorton's on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest and right now you can also download a coupon for $1.00 off any two Gorton's items HERE! (app direct links on Facebook can sometimes be tricky so if the direct link didn't work for you just visit Gortons Seafood on Facebook, make sure you are signed in of course) and then you will see a blue banner on the top right that reads 'Download Coupon', press there and the app will launch where you can download/print the coupon.)

Enter using the Rafflecopter Widget Below: (if it takes long to load, just refresh your browser)

a Rafflecopter giveaway

What is your Favorite Type of Seafood Butterfly?

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Disclosure: No monetary compensation has been received by Ascending Butterfly in exchange for this post. A Seafood Challenge pack was provided for editorial consideration and a pack has also been provided for one winner. Prize Fulfillment rests with Giveaway Sponsor. Ascending Butterfly and Giveaway Sponsors are not responsible for lost, late or mis-directed mail. All opinions and stories contained herein are 100% my own. I am a Gorton's Blogger Program Member. Visit our Giveaway Rules and Disclosure Policy Page HERE for full Disclsoure.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

#ad: I am joining @AmericanCancer Society to #finishthefight against #Cancer, because for me, it's very much Personal! Learn how YOU can help too!

Let's Finish The Fight {Sponsored Video}

Disclosure: I am honored to have this opportunity to tell my story as part of the American Cancer Society's 100th Birthday Celebration. While this is a Sponsored Post that includes a Sponsored Video Message, all opinions and stories contained herein are 100% my own. This post is Sponsored by the American Cancer Society.

It's no secret that 'The Big C' has been a major part of my life. I lost my Great-Grandmother to a Brain Tumor, my Grandmother to Uterine Cancer, my Dad to Liver Cancer, and my Mother has battled Ovarian Cancer twice and thankfully is here to tell her tale. Last year I was diagnosed with end stage Lung Cancer despite the fact I have never touched a Cigarette in my entire life. My ongoing battle, (as it stands I am being told by one hospital it's not while another is very sure it is) has not been an easy one. My Godmother, (who is also by blood) my Great Aunt, lost her battle to skin cancer.

I HATE Cancer. There I said it. Hate is not a word I use lightly. I don't use it carelessly. Since I started blogging I have taken as many opportunities as I possibly can to share about initiatives that aid in the fight against Cancer, not just Breast Cancer, but ALL Cancers equally. The fight against Cancer is very much a personal one for me.

In College I helped to put together a Fundraiser Concert for the American Cancer Society, it combined two passions of mine, my love of music (you listen to a lot of music and do a lot of praying while someone you love (or while you yourself), is undergoing testing and treatments) and my desire to aid in the fight in some way. The way fellow students on campus rallied to help is something I have never forgotten.

Will there be a cure in our lifetime? I can't answer that question with total certainty one way or the other, but what I can tell you with 100% certainty is that Cancer does NOT discriminate. It doesn't care how young you are, how much life you have yet to live. It doesn't care if you have a family that needs you. It doesn't care how important you are, it doesn't care what you have done nor does it care what you haven't yet accomplished.


Close your eyes and imagine hearing a Doctor tell you that you have end stage cancer and that you are 'on borrowed' time. How would you feel? What is the first thought that crossed your mind? Was it the loved ones you'd be leaving behind? Something you really want to achieve in life that you haven't had the opportunity to do yet?

About The American Cancer Society:

The American Cancer Society is a nationwide, community-based voluntary health organization that is dedicated to eliminating cancer, they help save lives by helping people stay well by preventing cancer, by detecting it early, by being there during and after a diagnosis, by finding cures through investment in ground-breaking discoveries and by rallying lawmakers and communities worldwide to join the fight.

The achievements of this organization are amazing, they have contributed to a 20% decline in cancer death rates and have helped to save 1.2 million lives. Their efforts have directly lead to a 50% drop in smoking deaths since the 1960's, contributing to a drop in overall lung cancer death rates.

The Fight Continues:

Despite their impressive accomplishments the fight continues! Some current goals include the undertaking of a historic research study called the 'Cancer Prevention Study-3 (CPS-3), the goal is to enroll at least 300,000 adults from various racial/ethnic backgrounds from across the US by the end of THIS year. They want to be sure that people facing Cancer have the help they need including a free place to stay during treatment and a ride to get there (I can't begin to stress how important those two things really are when you are facing such an emotionally, physically and spiritually draining process). In addition to the continuation of giving everyone access to quality health care, lifesaving screenings, clean air and more! The Society currently operates 31 Hope Lodge Facilities around the country, each offering a home away from home for patients and their caregivers traveling for treatment at no cost.

Where my online persona and my real one meet:

On Twitter, I am 'The Official #TwitterPartyDJ' as I'm a Twitter Party online hostess, and I'm also a music lover who shares fun tunes and audio accessories that make music sound better because music, and travel are two of my biggest passions. Online, I may be the TwitterPartyDJ, but offline I'm a lucky survivor, and I was super excited to find out two musicians I really like are joining in the fight too, check out these videos by Mary J. Blige and Josh Groban:


Silence Won't Finish the Fight AGAINST Cancer:

My Take:

Will YOU take a moment against silence? You can sign up on the American Cancer Society website to join the boldest move yet in the fight against cancer and I hope you will take a moment to do so. Let's help the society with their effort to help people celebrate more birthdays. After you sign up check out the tab that reads '100 Stories of Hope'. If reading those stories don't put your day-to-day temporary worries into perspective, nothing will. Silence never helps anything, let's make noise, let's give this issue a voice online, talking about it raises awareness and raising awareness is the way to get closer to a cure!

Just like I took the StrongMoms Empower pledge, and shared with you recently about #MoonWalkNYC, I have also taken the pledge to help the American Cancer Society to make NOISE to finish the fight against cancer and I hope you will too!

Sixty years ago, 1 out 3 people diagnosed with Cancer survived. Today, thanks in part to the work of the American Cancer Society, 2 out of 3 will survive. Let's make it 3 out of 3!

How has Cancer or the American Cancer Society affected your life Butterfly? Please share your story. Together we can add 100 more stories of hope! 

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FTC Disclosure: This is a Sponsored Post written by me on behalf of the American Cancer Society. All stories and opinions are 100% my own. I am a survivor and it's important to me personally to empower others with my story!

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Alison Sweeney (@Ali_Sweeney) 'the star attraction' #Book Signing Event @makemeaningUSA cc @GabrielasNYC #thestarattractionmamarazzi

Alison Sweeney at the star attraction book signing event at Make Meaning Store in New York City #thestarattractionmamarazzi
Alison Sweeney at 'the star attraction' book signing event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

I have a special (Not Entirely Wordless), Wordless Wednesday Edition this week! I just got back from the City from a super fun book signing and thought I'd share my photos with you!

It's no shocker I'm a Soap Opera Fan (I'm pretty sure the General Hospital Blogger Campaign, and my recent posts on behalf of All My Children and One Life to Live coming back online were a huge tip off), and today I got the chance to attend a Book Signing Event for Alison Sweeney's new book 'the star attraction'.

Alison Sweeney has portrayed the character 'Sami Brady' since she was 16 years old on the NBC hit daytime drama Days of our Lives, and is also the host of NBC's reality series The Biggest Loser. She is also the Author of 'The Mommy Diet' and she has penned another book titled 'the star attraction'.

The new book 'the star attraction' was released yesterday by Hyperion Books, and is about a Hollywood Publicist who scores her PR firm's most important actor client, and after a steamy make out session in a restaurant alley with her big name client, lines start to blur and one woman's daytime soap comes to life.

Sounds 'Tres Steamy' to me and I can't wait to read it! I'm thinking a day at the beach, a pina colada, me and this book have a date soon!

Here are some more pictures from the Book Signing Today:

Left: Denise Albert, Center: Actress/Author Alison Sweeney, Right: Melissa Musen Gerstein, at 'the star attraction' book signing MAMARAZZI event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

Left: Denise Albert, Center: Actress/Author Alison Sweeney, Right: Melissa Musen Gerstein, at 'the star attraction' book signing MAMARAZZI event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

Left: Denise Albert, Center: Actress/Author Alison Sweeney, Right: Melissa Musen Gerstein, at 'the star attraction' book signing MAMARAZZI event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

Left: Denise Albert, Center: Actress/Author Alison Sweeney, Right: Melissa Musen Gerstein, at 'the star attraction' book signing MAMARAZZI event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

Left: Actress/Author Alison Sweeney, Right: Melissa Musen Gerstein, at 'the star attraction' book signing MAMARAZZI event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

Left: Actress/Author Alison Sweeney, Right: Melissa Musen Gerstein, at 'the star attraction' book signing MAMARAZZI event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

Left: Actress/Author Alison Sweeney, Right: Melissa Musen Gerstein, at 'the star attraction' book signing MAMARAZZI event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

Left: Mama Butterfly, Right: Actress/Author Alison Sweeney, at 'the star attraction' book signing MAMARAZZI event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

Left: It's ME! Ascending Butterfly, Right: Actress/Author Alison Sweeney, at 'the star attraction' book signing MAMARAZZI event at the Make Meaning Store in New York City

My Take:

The Moms always take the time to really put thought into their events, the lunch was catered by Gabriela's Restaurant in New York City who put out a wonderful spread, and the Make Meaning Store where the event was held is a space in New York City where you can do crafts (and there is even a 'Wine' night, so I definitely need to go back there and create something fun and kick back with a glass of wine!).

In addition to the lunch and book signing where we got to meet Alison, she also answered questions from the audience and spoke about the difficulties of the work/life balance, and how important it is to truly love what you do. When you love what you do and are excited by it, your children will feel that. You do need to be professionally fulfilled, but if it's not at something you love doing it makes staying energetic for them AND for you, that much harder!

Mama Butterfly asked Alison about her weight struggles and how it was handled by the producers of Days of Our Lives, and Alison said that the Producers were always behind her, but she did read negative comments throughout the years, and that brought me right back to the Strong Moms Empowerment Summit and how important it is not just for press (print or digital) but for all moms to be supportive of each other! Alison was super down to earth and it was a pleasure meeting her! As Mama Butterfly is the one who got me hooked on 'Soaps' on my very first sick day from school as a pre-teen, it was only fitting somehow that we attended this event together!

I will post a full review of the book once I have read it (and I'll try to reach out to publisher and see if they'd like to host a giveaway in an upcoming Ascending Butterfly Book Club, hopefully for the summer as this looks like a great summer read!). I will also create a Pinterest Board for this event on Ascending Butterfly's Pinterest Page!

Here is the video from the Questions and Answers Session:

Video credit: Fredy Mfuko, Mission 101 Media

You can nab the book at a great price below:

What are you reading right now Butterfly?

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FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a Sponsored Post. No monetary compensation has been received to share our recap coverage of this event. A meet and greet and signed book were provided for editorial consideration, however all opinions are 100% my own! The book banner is an affiliate link.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

{#Beauty Review} My daytime/night-time #skincare one-two punch! @PURattitude + #RadiantwithAVEENO #SleepoverInfluenster

I've been using a skincare regimen that's been really showing positive results for me and I just had to share it with you!

I'm a big fan of serums and have been using PUR Attitude's 'Fountain of Youth' Serum during the day and in the evening after removing makeup I have been using Aveeno's Positively Radiant Intensive Night Cream and  I can tell you this combination has been a major one/two punch for my skin, they have been doing so much for my skin that even family and friends have noticed a difference, and what I love is how quickly I noticed the difference using them.

PUR Attitude Fountain of Youth Serum
PUR Attitude Fountain of Youth Serum

By Day: About PUR Attitude 'Fountain of Youth Serum':

This non-toxic, anti-aging serum combines peptide science with an exclusive blend of Hyaluronix technology to visibly increase the collagen and elastin matrix for firmer skin and less visible wrinkles. It's dubbed as a Botox alternative and much like the Fountain of Youth of Lore, is said to be able to 'turn back the hands of time'!

Dramatic Results Include:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - a 754% Increase in skin oxygenation
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - a 128% Boost in collagen
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - a 90% Increase in skin hydration
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - an 85% Increase in cell renewal
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - a 56% Reduction in the appearance of wrinkles

A 1 fl oz bottle is equal to a 6 to 8 week supply! (I am so happy I got a chance to meet the team behind this fantastic brand at Beauty Press Spotlight Day last year, you can see our original coverage of it HERE)

Aveeno Active Naturals Intensive Night Cream

Aveeno Active Naturals Intensive Night Cream + Sleep Mask in Influenster Box!

By Night: About AVEENO Positively Radiant Intensive Night Cream:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Brightens and evens skin tone
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Reduces skin dullness and improves luminosity
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Helps banish Brown Spots
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ -  Proven concentration of Active Naturals Total Soy Complex boosted with tone-evening vitamin B3

My Take:

I normally like to let each product have it's own day in the sun and feature them seperately, but because they have worked so well for me using them daily in tandem, I had to share them with you together. The day serum isn't cheap at $90 for the 1 fl oz, but for me price isn't nearly as important as efficacy is. This product works, and I noticed a difference immediately, and on the few days that I don't use it, I notice it and that says alot because I'm using quality cosmetics. So if on a day I don't use the serum I can still notice a difference made up, then that's proof in the pudding it's doing what it says it does! What I love is that a very little goes a long way with this. My skin is oil/acne prone and this did not clog my pores and just makes my skin feel incredible and the firming properties are really noticeable!

As you guys know I have been testing Aveeno Active Naturals before receiving this wonderful bundle of love from Influenster (which included a sleep mask, how cute is that?), you can read HERE for our previous coverage of the line, but I can tell you that despite using such a phenomenal serum by day, after I wash off my makeup when I go to put my Aveeno Active Naturals Intensive Night Cream on, my skin literally drinks it in! I love the scent and even make sure to put it on my neck and decolletage at night too! It makes my face feel softer and smoother and in a very short time I noticed a difference in brown spots and my skin's luminosity. I have a lot of brown spots and acne scars which I normally cover up with makeup if I get enough time before running out the door in the morning. With  this night cream I actually feel like I'm addressing the problem in a way that makes a more permanent difference than makeup can alone. And at $16.99 for the 17 oz jar this one is definitely a steal!

These are both working very well as a skin 'tag team' of sorts! And considering my skin is oily/acne prone, I love that neither one clog my pores, nor do they make my skin feel greasy in any way. On days where time is crazy and I forget to use either one I do see a difference and it's a great reminder to stick to this effective skin care routine!

Have you tried Fountain of Youth/PUR Attitude or Aveeno Products? Share Your Experiences with us. What is your daily skincare ritual Butterfly?

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FTC Disclosure: Ascending Butterfly was provided product samples of both products for editorial consideration, however all opinions expressed in this review are 100% my own. We share products that we feel will benefit our readers and blog using all Ethical Blogger Standards and Guidelines. You can also check out our Full Disclosure Policy for more information.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Motivation Monday: The Mother's Day + Money Isn't Everything + Winner Edition!

Yesterday we posted about the the StrongMoms Pledge and a recap of the StrongMoms Empowerment Summit in New York City, if you missed that post, or would still like to take the pledge, click HERE. I hope you do take the pledge, you don't have to be a mom to vow not to bash other moms and always be supportive! As adults this pledge is an example that shows younger people how important it is to be supportive of one another and NOT bully each other both on or offline, let's set the example! We all do the same things in very different ways sometimes, that doesn't make it bad or good, wrong or right, let's embrace what makes everyone unique and be more supportive of each other! I hope all our mom readers had a fantastic day. And for those whose moms are now in heaven, know that they were with you yesterday! And if you saw a butterfly on your path, it was someone who has passed away saying hello to you!

We also announced the winner of our $100 Wilson's Leather Gift Card Giveaway, you can click HERE to go straight to the rafflecopter widget and check it out, the winner was Katie R. who was entry #3394. I am sure she is going to find something that she loves at Wilsons Leather! You guys did a great job, we got just under 3,900 entries and after deleting those did not follow the rules (like not being a GFC follower or just leaving the rafflecopter blank) we ended with a total of 3,563 entries, which is the biggest turnout to date, and I got a lot of emails telling me just how much you guys loved that jacket! I love that Wilson's always provides gift cards so YOU can select your choice of item (which is also great for our male readers who don't want handbags!) :)

And because it's Monday and we can all use some Motivation, or if anything at least a good chuckle, here is some Monday Motivation for you:

Seriously though, if your money is getting you down......LOL

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FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a Sponsored Post.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Happy Mother's Day! Have You Taken The StrongMoms® Pledge Yet? {#Photos and recap of StrongMoms® Empowerment Summit in New York City} #strongmomsempower

StrongMoms Empower Summit NYC The MOMS empowerment StrongMoms Pledge
Display Signage at StrongMoms Empowerment Summit in New York City

When a survey leads to a summit you have to figure it must be pretty powerful! The National Motherhood Decisions Survey which was conducted by Mom Central and Similac found that 95% of moms feel negatively judged on their parenting decisions. The online survey included responses from over 1,100 moms with at least one child under 5 years of age and found that moms feel most judged on decisions related to parenting approaches, work, as well as infant feeding. Surprisingly, moms that completed this survey felt equally judged for being 'too strict' and equally judged for 'spoiling' their kids! (Sadly, this judgment goes beyond moms and mom bloggers, it's occurs with all genres/styles!)

#StrongMomsEmpower, StrongMoms Empowerment Summit, StrongMoms Empower, The MOMS, Empowerment, Events, NYC, New York City
Display Signage at StrongMoms Empowerment Summit in New York City

The survey results and the issue of 'mom-judging' was the focus of the May 7th, 2013 StrongMoms® Empowerment Summit in New York City, hosted by The MOMS and presenting Sponsor Similac. The goal of the Summit was to heighten awareness of the issue and to empower moms by creating a more supportive and less judgmental environment, both on and offline. A panel of influential moms shared stories that included how they created their support systems and how they empower themselves and other daily.

“Similac created StrongMoms Empower to encourage moms to support each other and build confidence in their decisions.” ~ Rhonda Hoffman, Division Vice President and General Manager, U.S. Pediatric Nutrition

speakers and panelists display signage at strongmoms empowerment summit in New York City, StrongMoms Pledge, The MOMS, Empowerment
Speakers and Panelists Display Signage at StrongMoms  Empowerment Summit in NYC

Speakers and Experts on the Panel included:

Three-time Olympic Gold Medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings:

Three Time Olympic Gold Medalist Kerri Walsh Jennings speaking at StrongMoms Empowerment Summit in NYC
“As someone in the public eye, others have definitely judged some of my parenting choices,” said Kerri Walsh Jennings, three-time Olympic gold medalist in beach volleyball and mother of three. “But I don’t let their comments get to me. I try my hardest and make the decisions I think are the best for my family and me. I think that’s all any mom can do.”

Parenting Expert Michele Borba, Ed.D.:

Parenting Expert Michele Borba, Ed.D. Speaking at StrongMoms Empowerment Summit in NYC, Empowerment, #StrongMomsEmpower
“It’s not easy being a mom in today’s world,” said Michele Borba, Ed.D., expert on parenting and bullying prevention and StrongMoms Advisory Board member. “Moms face tremendous pressure to make the ‘perfect’ parenting decisions, and there’s not a one-size-fits-all approach to parenting.”

"The Kid's Doctor" Sue Hubbard, M.D.

"The Kid's Doctor" Sue Hubbard, M.D Speaking at #StrongMomsEmpower StrongMoms Empowerment Summit in New York City
"Anxiety plays a role in raising stressed out kids!"

Denise Albert and Melissa Musen Gerstein, The MOMS

“There’s no such thing as a ‘Mom Manual,’" said Denise Albert and Melissa Musen Gerstein of The MOMS, StrongMoms Advisory Board Members. “StrongMoms Empower has such an important message for all moms – whether you work or stay home, breastfeed or formula feed, are strict in your parenting or not – the message to support mom is universal.”

The Chatty Momma Blogger, Tonia Sanders

Tonia Sanders (wearing the red dress) blogs at

Founder of Danielle Smith

Right: Danielle Smith, (Who is wearing the Orange striped dress) is the founder of and one of the authors of 'Mom, Incorporated'

If you are interested in checking out Danielle's book, you can order it directly from Amazon below:

All Speakers!

Producer Dina Conte Schulz (Far Right) is with 'The Kid's Doctor Media'

Moderator, Darlene Rodriguez

Moderator, Darlene Rodriguez, is co-anchor of the award winning 'Today in New York' and she also fills in as co-anchor for the NBC 4 New York's Evening Newscasts.

My Take:

I love that the StrongMoms Empowerment Summit featured real moms sharing their real world experiences, the good, the bad and the ugly. Those moments where they didn't feel so empowered were used to help empower other moms when they got the chance and that is exactly what it's all about. I firmly believe that every experience we go through, especially the bad ones, are meant as teaching tools, they empower us to help someone else facing the same situation.

I took the Pledge:

And I hope that you will visit StrongMoms® Empower and take the pledge too! Let's stop judging each other, and help empower each other. What better gift can you give Mom, than pledging to empower ALL moms?

I won the centerpiece!

I was at the lucky seat at my table (there was a little purple sticker on my chair) and I won my table's centerpiece (which contained an Orchid, Roses and pretty Carnations!) And the (former) event planner in me must share that the venue, the Apella Event Space at Alexandria Center in New York City couldn't have been more perfect!

Happy Mother's Day Butterflies!

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FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a Sponsored/Compensated Post, no monetary compensation has been received to share our event recap. All opinions are 100% my own. The banner to the book is an affiliate link. I genuinely feel the world would be a MUCH better place if we took as much time empowering one another as we do be-littling each other!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

You can only hope to look this good at 90! Check out the #90thAnniversary 90th Birthday Activities with @AlexanderDollCo

Madame Alexander 90th Anniversary Logo

On April 30th, The Madame Alexander Doll Company held a 90th Anniversary (aka 90th 'Birthday) event in  their NEW Mid-Town Manhattan New York City Showroom. For those in the know, the iconic doll company was headquartered originally in Harlem New York, so it was a bit weird to see them in their new location, they were such an intrinsic part of the Harlem Community for so long. (Not to mention their new offices with their proximity to Macy's Herald Square is so much more dangerous for me as it's way to tempting to go shopping after leaving their new offices now!)

90th anniversary Madame Alexander Cissy Doll
21" Cissy Doll emulating a photo of Madame Alexander from a 1920's photo, wearing a beaded dress and fur shawl with a rhinestone broach. She was on display in a display case of her own, so please forgive the glare of my flash.

For those that don't know the brand history, Madame Beatrice Alexander initiated an infamous series of 'firsts' in the toy industry including:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - The first doll based on a licensed character, Scarlette O'Hara from Gone With the Wind

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - The first to bring feature Baby Dolls to market

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - The first to create dolls in honor of living people, including Queen Elizabeth, the Dionne Quints and more

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - The first full figured fashion doll, 'Cissy', with haute couture outfits (years before Barbie hit the market!)

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - The first to invent the 'sleep eyes' mechanism that makes dolls' eyes close

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - The first-ever line of Patriotic Dolls

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - The first to use hard plastic in doll manufacturing

Collection of Madame Alexander Dolls on Display in their new midtown manhattan new york city headquarters kahn lucas
Collection of Madame Alexander Dolls on display in their new midtown Manhattan New York City Headquarters

They have spent 9 decades capturing the imagination and passion of doll lovers and collectors world wide, and at 90 they couldn't look better, we can all only hope to look that good at 90! My introduction to the brand was when my Grand-Mother gave me my first Madame Alexander doll. My Grand-Mother was a nurse but one of her many passions was embroidery and sewing and she would make Bridal Dolls for Weddings, using Madame Alexander dolls and creating a replica of the bride's dress for the doll. Her handi-work was amazing, and after each one was done, I wanted them all! Everytime I get to visit or attend a Madame Alexander event, it's always a bit nostalgic and bitter-sweet for me, because I instantly think of my Grand-Mother and her late night's making Bridal Dress replicas for Madame Alexander dolls for brides (if anyone out there has one of my Grandmother's creations, I'd love to see a photo!). I only wish she would have been here to make one for me for my own wedding.

dollie & me display at Madame Alexander new headquarters reception area Kahn Lucas
Dollie & Me Display in the reception area of their headquarters in Midtown, New York City

The famous doll company is now owned by Kahn Lucas Lancaster, Inc, a global designer and wholesaler of branded girls' dresses and fashion collections, and during the 90th Anniversary event, we got the chance to learn more about Dollie & Me, a doll lifestyle brand made by Madame Alexander and designed by Kahn Lucas. In addition to selling dolls with matching outfits for girls, they strive to empower young girls through positive and imaginative play. The 18' dolls and trendy matching girl dresses, outfits and pajamas can also be purchased seperately (in case your little princess doesn't necessarily want her little friend to match her all the time!). And for my fellow butterfly lovers there were tons of fab butterfly dollie & me outfits to choose from.

90th Anniversary Collection Dolls are limited edition and all come with a special 90th anniversary hang tag!

The New York City event included a Dylan's Candy Bar treats station:

Dylans Candy Bar Treat Station at Madame Alexander Dolle & Me 90th Anniversary event at the new midtown Manhattan New York City Headquarters
Dylan's Candy Bar Treat Station at Madame Alexander 90th Anniversary Celebration in New York City! Notice the Dylan's Candy Bar Queen 8-inch Wendy Doll in the background? She is currently on pre-order and expected to ship September 2013!

90th Anniversary Cupcakes:

Madame Alexander Doll Company 90th Anniversary Celebration in new midtown Manhattan New York City Headquarters attendees enjoyed 90th anniversary cupcakes
Madame Alexander Doll Company 90th Anniversary Celebration in their new midtown Manhattan New York City Headquarters attendees enjoyed 90th anniversary cupcakes

I just had to snap a shot of this Eloise at the Plaza replica that was designed for FAO Schwarz:

The Plaza Hotel Replica designed by Madame Alexander for FAO Schwarz in New York City
The Plaza Hotel Replica designed by Madame Alexander for FAO Schwarz in New York City

and a doll to take home! (A bit hard to explain why I was carrying this doll at the Fashion Events I attended later that afternoon and evening!)

Want to join Ascending Butterfly in wishing Madame Alexander a very Happy 90th Anniversary/Birthday?

Get Social:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 'Like' Alexander Dolls on Facebook
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Follow @AlexanderDollCo on Twitter
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - You can also become Pin friends with Madame Alexander (Official) on Pinterest

What is your favorite doll Butterfly?

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FTC Dislcosure: This is NOT a sponsored post, no compensation has been received to share our event recap coverage. We were given Dylan's Candy Treats, Cupcakes and a gift bag!