Sunday, March 23, 2014

Surf and Turf Stuffed Mushrooms Recipe using @JimmyDean Pork Sausage Crumbles! #jdcrumbles

#spon: I'm required to disclose a relationship between our site and Jimmy Dean. This could include Jimmy Dean providing us with content, product access, or other forms of payment.

I personally think Surf and Turf is one of the best things ever! I can't get enough of it and when the folks at Jimmy Dean challenged me to use their Hearty Original Sausage Crumbles in a recipe, I knew right from the start I didn't want to do the obvious and go breakfast so I thought about some of my favorite recipes, and one of the ones that everyone asks me to make repeatedly, my 'Surf and Turf Stuffed Mushrooms' immediately came to mind!

I always end up having to increase the number of them each and every time I make them as they go super quickly! While I mostly make them as appetizers, they would make for a pretty unique breakfast as many of the ingredients could just as easily be used for an Omelette actually! Or if eggs are not your thing, then these would definitely make a great breakfast meal (or brunch if you are a late riser!)

Surf and Turf Stuffed Mushrooms, Jimmy Dean Hearty Original Sausage Crumbles
Surf and Turf Stuffed Mushrooms using Jimmy Dean Hearty Original Sausage Crumbles

Surf and Turf Stuffed Mushrooms Printable Recipe Card Ingredients

You can adjust the serving size to your preferences, but I find that 24 mushrooms work best (that would give six people four of them which works as an appetizer). You can also use any kind of mushroom you prefer, I like the buttery flavor that the organic ones have, but I have also prepared this recipe with Portobello Mushrooms, and do enjoy them that way also! I tend to add more Garden Vegetables to my recipe, but garlic, onion and pepper are the basic ones I use. If I am using a spicy sausage I will also use finely minced celery in the recipe. If you cut each shrimp into 'thirds' you should be able to stuff 24 mushrooms with a good ratio balance of shrimp to meat, but if you want thicker pieces add more shrimp to it, or cut each piece in half and not thirds. And while I didn't add it here, I also sometimes like to shred some sharp cheddar and mozarella cheese shaved thinly on top of each mushroom as I don't like adding cream cheese to mine. So feel free to play with the recipe to match it to your taste! If you are a spice fan, then feel free to substitute the hearty Original Sausage Crumbles with the Hot & Spicy instead.

I find it easier to clean the mushrooms first before doing anything else, I hold the stems on the side and then prepare the baking sheet and add the mushrooms to it, then I go about dicing the stems. Then I prepare the Shrimp (of course if you can buy them already de-veined you save a step), I add the veggies and mushroom stems to the skillet and then I add the Sausage and Shrimp, you don't have to heat them too long because you will be heating everything together in the oven, it's easier to mix the skillet ingredients with the parmesan and breadcrumbs to stuff faster, but you can also just stuff them with the skillet items first, and then sprinkle the breadcrumbs/cheese mixture on top. I like the on top way if I'm using Panko, and the mixed way if I'm using regular breadcrumbs. But again that's to your taste!

My Take:

I have made a ton of variations on this recipe over the years, sometimes I will make it with crab and a spicier sausage (like a Chorizo or Andouille), sometimes shrimp, and I have even done these with Salmon as the Seafood component (a hearty white fish would work well too!). What I love about the Jimmy Dean Hearty Original Sausage Crumbles is that they save me a step as they are already in bite size pieces and they are fully cooked! The meat adds loads of flavor and juiciness to each mushroom!

I'm all for things that save me a step, the faster I get out of the kitchen, the more time I have to spend with my guests!

Have You Tried Jimmy Dean Hearty Original Sausage Crumbles? Try out our recipe and let us know how you liked it!

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FTC Disclosure: Jimmy Dean provided us with Product Samples for editorial consideration. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure. All opinions are 100% my own!

Thursday, March 20, 2014

Me as Zebra Swallowtail #Butterfly @TheBronxZoo #ThrowbackThursday #TBT

In the spirit of Throwback Thursday, here is a photo of me hamming it up at The Bronx Zoo in New York City circa 2005! Don't I look cute as a Zebra Swallowtail Butterfly?

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FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a Sponsored Post.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

{#WordlessWednesday} House of Blues New Orleans @HOBNOLA #NOLA #Travel #Photography

House of Blues New Orleans, Louisiana, Travel Tourism, Photography, Blues, Music
House of Blues New Orleans, Louisiana

This is the third House of Blues location I have visited, I visited the one in Boston first, then the one in Atlantic City second!

Bloggers Feel Free to post a URL to your WW posts! (Remember NO Giveaways please, Wordless Wednesday URL's only, thanks!)

Happy Wordless Wednesday Butterflies!

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FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a Sponsored Post

Monday, March 17, 2014

{#MotivationMonday} The importance of diet & heart health + highlights from the @GoRedForWomen Luncheon in NYC!

Go Red for Women American Heart Association Logo

My Great-Grandmother never got a cold, never battled the Flu and ate like a bird, but she suffered a Stroke. While heart disease does not necessarily run in my family, my Great-Grandmother's Stroke does make me more cautious about ways to reduce my own risk. I have also experienced peers who have suffered Strokes, and it is not just something that happens to those who are 'older'.

I recently attended the American Heart Association's Go Red for Women Luncheon in New York City, where I learned that more WOMEN die of heart disease than of any other cause. Yet only 1 in every 5 women actually believes Heart Disease is actually a threat.

Heart Disease is the Number One killer of women in the United States, claiming more lives than all forms of CANCER combined!

1 of 3 women suffer in silence, and almost one dies every minute making this preventable disease a silent killer! Heart Disease is the Number 1 killer of women, and Stroke is Number 3. The 2014 Go Red for Women Luncheon celebrates New York City women joining together to raise awareness and funds and is the premiere luncheon in the country. This year the luncheon with over 1,300 in attendance is expected to raise over $1,400,000 for research and education aimed at fighting heart disease and stroke in women.

Table 14 Grain Foods Foundation Silver Heart Sponsors of Go Red For Women Luncheon 2014 in New York City. charity, charitable initiatives, philanthropy
Table 14, Grain Foods Foundation Table at the Go Red for Women Luncheon in NYC - That's ME, Ascending Butterfly second from left side (wearing black jacket (Jones New York) and red shirt (Top is by IGIGI)) and second from the right is Christine Cochran, Executive Director of the Grain Foods Foundation  (wearing a white shirt collar over the top of the red dress.)

I had the pleasure of attending the Health Expo and Go Red for Women Luncheon with 'Heart of Silver' Sponsors, Grain Foods Foundation. Their sponsorship of the event will reach 2,000 high-risk minority women through Have Faith in Heart Events. 

Grain Foods Foundation has heart-healthy recipes in the Grains in Your Kitchen section of, and also includes expert nutrition advice from Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum who is a Grain Foods Foundation Scientific Advisory Board Member and American Heart Association Go Red For Women Spokesperson.

Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum a Grain Foods Foundation Scientific Advisory Board Member and American Heart Association Go Red For Women Spokesperson
“It is essential for consumers to understand the importance of balance to achieving heart health, and that includes diet, For example, eating whole grains will help you become healthier and is a great way to reduce risk factors for heart disease, like high cholesterol. It’s estimated that 80 percent of all cardiovascular events are preventable and treatable, and whole grains’ contribution should not be overlooked.” ~ Dr. Suzanne Steinbaum
As a Latina I know our community has a high propensity for Diabetes, and as 65% of people with Diabetes die from heart disease and stroke it is important to me that the Ascending Butterfly Community be empowered in ALL ways - Mind, Body and Soul to keep our overall health and wellness at it's peak efficiency. I have always felt that if one area is deficient, they all will be. And it's super important to know the facts about your level of risk! Latinas the campaign is also in Spanish, it's called Go Red por tu corazon There are also Recetas Favoritas/Favorite Recipes in Spanish made in a more hearth healthy way, so we can make small changes that will add up to better heart health not just for us, but the generations coming up behind us as well.

Heart Attack Warning Signs:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or Pain.

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Discomfort in Other Areas of the Upper Body:  Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Shortness of Breath: With or Without Chest Discomfort

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Other Signs: may include: breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or light-headedness

Cardiac Arrest Warning Signs:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Sudden loss of Responsiveness - No response to tapping on the shoulders

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - No Normal Breathing - The victim does not take a normal breath when you tilt the head up and check for at least five seconds.

Stroke Warning Signs:

Spot a Stroke F.A.S.T.:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Face Drooping - Does one side of the face droop or is it numb? Ask the person to smile

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Arm Weakness - Is one weak or numb? As the person to raise both arms. Watch them, does one arm drift downward?

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Speech Difficulty - Is speech slurred, are they unable to speak, or hard to understand? As the person to repeat a simple sentence, like 'the sky is blue.' - Did they repeat the sentence correctly?

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Time to call 9-1-1 if the person shows any of these symptoms, even if the symptoms go away, call 9-1-1 and get them to the hospital immediately

Christine Cochran, Executive Director of the Grain Foods Foundation
Christine Cochran, Executive Director of the Grain Foods Foundation raises her glass and gives a toast to the survivors and all the strong women in the room  who are out to help make difference!

Sponsors for the luncheon included: Grain Foods Foundation, Macys, North Shore LIJ, Geoffrey Beene Gives Back, GIII, Seiko, TransPerfect, Valerie Wilson Travel, Amarin Pharma Inc, Clear Channel Media, Estee Lauder, Planet Gold Clothing Company, Mashable Inc., Nautica, Amerex Group, Baltimore Sun Media Group, The Boston Globe, Bulkley Dunton, Carat USA, CBA Industries, Duane Reade, Forest Laboratories, Google, Interstate General Media, Levi Strauss & Co., NBC Universal, New York Daily News, New York-Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical Center - Ronald O. Perelman Heart Institute, The New York Post, & The New York Times. Great to see brands I already know and trust banning together to offer their support to this amazing cause! (And a special shout out to Macys who also does amazing work with Ronald McDonald Children's Charities, they have donated furniture to the New York City House which I think is amazing as well. I am an Ambassador for Ronald McDonald Children's Charities and would love to see more brands get involved with them as well!). I wear Levi Strauss so I was glad to see them there as well!

Lynda Baquero ‏(left) of News 4 New York and  Chelsea Clinton (keynote speaker) at the 2014 Go Red for Women Luncheon in New York City!

Did you know?

Over 36,000 babies are born every year with a heart defect. There are currently more than 9 million kids overweight. Worse still 1 in every 4,000 infants has a stroke!

My Take:

Studies show that maintaining a healthy diet and physical activity can reduce the risk of heart disease by as much as 80 percent! That's huge! Doing something so simple can add so many QUALITY years of life and get you more quality time with those you love and those who love you. Do it for your heart, do it for their hearts, do it for those who were not so lucky, embrace a healthier diet, increase your physical activity and for those who still do it, STOP SMOKING! Keep your heart healthy! I hope you will join the cause and support the movement, in fact, this page outlines specific ways to GET INVOLVED, choose one or more! Seeing what my Great-Grandmother went through and now recently a former co-worker, peer and friend who is still in rehabilitation to re-gain both speech and mobility again, I know I don't want to live that myself. I plan to more careful with my diet, memorize those warning signs, and be sure to get a checkup regularly, I don't want to fall victim to the silent killer!

Big shout out to Grain Foods Foundation for Sponsoring a Table and sharing the word on easy ways we can improve our diets to help prevent heart disease, and for inviting Ascending Butterfly to break bread with them and help spread the word.

Have any of our butterflies experienced a Heart Attack or Stroke First Hand? Were you able to identify the warning signs and get treatment on time? Please tell us about your experience!

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FTC Disclosure: Grain Foods Foundation (a Not-For-Profit organization) provided us with passes to the Health Expo and Go Red for Women Luncheon experience for editorial consideration. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure. All opinions are 100% my own! No monetary compensation has been exchanged!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

If the Polar Vortex still hasn't let up where you are or you are ski slope bound - check out these @muk_luks boots!

Apparently Mother Nature and Old Man Winter have teamed up to keep my City in a Vice Grip of Cold Weather! I was seriously tempted to make a quick recording of the howling winds outside my window right now to give you the soundtrack I listen to all day unless I put my headphones on!

While my mind is on warm Sandy Beaches and Tropical Trade Winds, the slap of cold air when I head out the door brings me right back to reality pretty quickly.

I have been living in these boots during the winter and I thought I'd share them with you!

Gwen Tribal Motif Boots, The Original Muk Luks Company, Winter Boots
Gwen Tribal Motif Boots by The Original Muk Luks Company

The 'Gwen Tribal Motif' Boots' by The Original Muk Luks Company:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Style: Cold Weather

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Height: Knee High

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Toe Shape: Round

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Platform Height: 0.5-inch

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Shaft Height: 12.5 inches

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Circumference: 7.75 inches

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Width: Medium (they are really generous for a Medium!)

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Lining: Fully Lined

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Sole: Water-proof Rubber Sole

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Footbed: Slightly Padded

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Upper/outsole: 100% Suede Leather with acrylic knit and polyester faux fur (so no guilt to all my animal loving butterflies out there!)

My Take:

These have been hit hard by me all winter with the back to back snowstorms and have held up really well for me in places where most boots fail me, these did not turn ugly on me with salt stains and that was a pleasant surprise for me. Usually my winter boots get salt stains no matter how fastidious I may be in trying to wipe them down as soon as I get home. These keep my feet super warm and dry and I also love that they are not too flat, boots that are too flat tend to make me 'duck walk' and these didn't do that. I also prefer a round toe to pointy, and while I normally go wide on something like boots that I know I will hit hard often here, these are actually a very generous Medium and I didn't feel I needed or missed the wide at all. You really can't go wrong with these! They are comfy, fashion forward and really will keep your feet protected in winter, so if the Polar Vortex won't let up or you are headed to the slopes, you definitely want to pick up a pair of these! (BTW, they also have these in a Brown/Red/White Multi called 'Gwen X FairIsle' that are super cute too!)

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FTC Disclosure: The Original Muk Luks Company provided us with the Gwen Tribal Motif Boots for editorial consideration. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure. All opinions are 100% my own! 

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

{#Photo} What does @MaseratiNYC, @WallisFashion and @koobabags have to do with each other? #WordlessWednesday

So what does Maserati, Wallis Fashion and Kooba Handbags have to do with one another? ME of course! I attended a very smart Fashion Event (which I will share a full recap on very soon) that was held at the Maserati Showroom in New York City, don't you just love the red funnel neck coat by Wallis Fashion I am wearing? I'm carrying a Kooba Handbag. Fashion and Fast Cars? Just another day in New York City my friends, just another day in the city that never sleeps!

Happy Wordless Wednesday Butterflies! (Bloggers you are always welcome to post the URL to your Wordless Wednesday Posts, however no giveaway links here, thanks!)

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FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a Sponsored Post. I have not been compensated to share this photo.

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Get your FREE @ledisi latest CD, The Truth today only at @BestBuy NYC & get your wristband for her autograph signing this Friday!

#ad: Ascending Butterfly is a member of Best Buy's WOLF Blogger Program and this is a Sponsored Post. Compensation in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or product/services at no or reduced cost has been exchanged, as always, all opinions are my own!

Just thought I'd add some more info to yesterday's post! I visited the Best Buy at 1880 Broadway for a Magnolia at Best Buy Home Theater Demo, at the end of the Demo I was given Ledisi's newest release The Truth, and a wristband that will grant me access to her autograph signing this Friday at the same store!

Her new album is the bomb, here is a video I took during my demo so you can hear not only her new album, but just how good it sounds off those MartinLogan Theos 8" Floor Speakers:

If you stop by today and watch the demo, you leave with a free CD and a wristband that will get you access to the autograph signing this Friday. The CD's are only free today, but you can purchase one at the store before the signing and still get a wristband, but hurry because there will only be 250 wristbands distributed!

I am digging both my new CD and those sweet MartinLogan Theos Speakers! My home theater is due for an upgrade and getting the chance to demo the sound on these speakers in an environment that truly mirrors a home system setup and have experts answer all my questions was super helpful!

Hopefully I get a picture with Ledisi during the Autograph signing later this week, if I do, I will definitely post it here! And you can check out yesterday's post for more detailed info on what is going on Best Buy for March Audio Fest HERE.

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FTC Disclosure: I am a Best Buy Brand Ambassador. This allows me to share information, sales, product reviews and deals on a regular basis! I took a home theater demo and received a CD and wristband, this post is non-compensated. All opinions are 100% my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may visit our full giveaway and disclosure page for complete policy information. There are affiliate links in this post.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Save at #AudioFest @BestBuy + here is the scoop for two hot New York City Based Events THIS week! @BestBuyWOLF #ad

#ad: Ascending Butterfly is a member of Best Buy's WOLF Blogger Program and this is a Sponsored Post. Compensation in the form of a Best Buy Gift Card and/or product/services at no or reduced cost has been exchanged, as always, all opinions are my own!

March Audio Fest Best Buy

As #TheOfficialTwitterPartyDJ on Twitter, and a lifelong Music lover and all things audiophile, when hot Audio and even hotter music combine it's got MY name written all over it! From March 2nd through MY BIRTHDAY, 4/4, Best Buy will feature one month of audio specials and deals, events and more!

The month of March is when you will find the best offers on Audio Products at local Best Buy locations, and there will be in-store demonstrations that will teach you to upgrade your Home Audio with the latest and greatest for your space! Come on down and HEAR the difference for yourself! In fact I will be doing just that myself as there will be a demo in New York City at the Best Buy Store at 1880 Broadway starting at 10am (between 61st and 62nd Streets!) on Tuesday, March 11th. And if you attend the demo, you will get a wristband that will allow you to come back on Friday for a Ledisi Autograph Signing! She is an 8 time Grammy Nominated Singer/Songwriter (and actress, WERK honey!). You need that wristband to get her autograph this Friday, so don't forget to stop in for your Audio Demo on Tuesday! I will be there so if you see me, please don't be shy, come say hi! :-)

Offers by Week:

Week of 3/9 (THIS Week):

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 2x points on Sonos Home Theater
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - All AVRs on Sale
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ -All iPod touch on sale
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Save $80 on Samsung Blu-ray/Soundbar Bundle

Week of 3/16 (Next Week):

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - 2x points on all speakers
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - BDi Furniture (3/7 – 3/23) Save $200 on any Home Theater Cabinet
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - All-on-sale Car Audio Speakers + 50% off speaker installation
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - $50 Savings on Sony MDR10 Headphones

Week of 3/23:

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Save 25% on all Sennheiser HD 500 Series Headphones
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - All Logitech Computer Headsets on Sale
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Save $50 - $150 on Select Energy audio products (3/9-4/5)

Week of 3/30 (FINAL Week):

Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ -All Insignia Computer Speakers on Sale
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Save $100-$200 on select Definitive Technology Floor Speakers (3/23-4/5)
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Save $50 - $150 on Select Energy audio products (3/9-4/5)
Ƹ̵̡Ӝ̵̨̄Ʒ - Save $150 - $300 on Select Jamo Speakers

Guess who pimped my Music?

My friends at Best Buy sent me the JBL Flip Stereo Speaker and I'm totally digging on this Bluetooth wireless system for smartphones and tablets. It has two 1-5/8 inch (40-millimeter) drivers and a built-in bass port that delivers the exceptional bass sound that JBL is known for in a totally portable package! With this little wonder I can get up to 5 hours of playback time with it's built in Li-ion rechargeable battery which connects wirelessly to any Bluetooth-equipped device. It's a big sound, with great portability at a fantastic price! Right now it's $89.95 at Best Buy which is $30 lower than a leading competitor has it, just saying! (With Mother's Day coming up soon, and Dads and Grads month in June, buy it now at the sale price and tuck it away, I can't imagine who wouldn't be excited to get it!)

Great Giveaway Alert:

Fellow My Best Buy Members, enter your My Best Buy Member ID HERE to enter to win a trip to see Kings of Leon - Mechanical Bull Concert in one of my favorite cities, NEW ORLEANS! If one of my butterflies win, I totally hope you bring me with you! One of my fave bands playing in one of my favorite cities, it's music nirvana I tell you!

My Take:

I for one can't get enough when it comes to my Music! My home theatre surround is due for an upgrade and I definitely want a 'Smart TV' for my living room so I'm totally looking forward to checking out the demo at my local store and learning about the latest and greatest in Home Audio!  And I have to admit I'm already nerding out about getting to meeting Ledisi this Friday at my local Best Buy in New York City (1880 Broadway). If you were thinking about any Home Audio Updates, right now is the time to take advantage and do it at a great price!

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FTC Disclosure: I am a Best Buy Brand Ambassador. This allows me to share information, sales, product reviews and deals on a regular basis! This is a compensated campaign brought to you by Best Buy and JBL who provided the Flip Wireless Bluetooth Speaker for editorial consideration. All opinions are 100% my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may visit our full giveaway and disclosure page for complete policy information. There are affiliate links in this post.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

{#Giveaway} Need to update your brand? Start by winning 100 Business Cards from our friends @tinyprints!

This Giveaway is CLOSED, winner is Rachel T.
tinyprints logo

It is exactly one year now that I have been putting my 'best face' forward on my business cards and using a card that is not only creative, but the most reflective of me and my personal brand.

For me, being an 'Ascending Butterfly' is a soul that is always in transition, always growing, changing and evolving. Even in the most simple ways I like to see signs of change, my desktop wallpaper rotates every 15 minutes with a new picture or motivational quote, the same with my screensaver. I even change the desktop background to my phone daily! So for me to say I haven't re-designed my business cards in over a year is truly saying a lot. Usually every time I needed a new box, I would re-design the entire card. But not anymore!

About Tiny Prints:

tinyprints is a company that was founded by three friends with big dreams and a passion for beautiful paper that has grown into a booming online destination for stylish stationery (and more!) for every occasion.

Tiny Prints Ascending Butterfly Business Card Front
My business card is a folded card so it can be stored as a standard size card. But as you can see below, it is anything but 'standard'.

Tiny Prints Ascending Butterfly Business Card Inside
It opens up and this is the 'inside' of the actual card (I blanked out my phone number, sorry guys!)

Tiny Prints Ascending Butterfly Business Card Back
The back of the card has room for notes, and even though the surface of the card is 'pearlized' you can write on it easily!

My Take:

Since I started blogging I have designed a new card each year, which makes perfect sense, the cards evolved as much as me and my blog have. But now I'm in more of a 'groove' and my tinyprints Business Cards have been the most accurate reflection of me to date!

The tinyprints Custom Design Service allows you to work directly with a Designer, so your card truly reflects your vision instead of just a standard template. They also offer a free physical AND digital proof. There is a low One-Time Fee of $25 for the service. My designer took a very scattered vision and helped me organize it all in a way that made sense from a design standpoint, and still retain the creativity I wanted the card to have. The quality of the cardstock and the brilliant design make these my favorite cards to date! I couldn't recommend tinyprints more (as you can see from past reviews, here and here), but I will warn you, order at least 100 more than you think you'll need, you'd be surprised just how many you will go through PER conference or networking event with these! For me the past few months have been filled with non-stop tradeshows, conferences, expos and events, and I have almost run through a print run of 500 cards already!

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You can find current Tiny Prints Coupons Codes and Promotions HERE - Get free shipping on orders $49 or more! Use Code: FREESHIP49 | Limited time only see website for details

Win It:

One lucky butterfly will win 100 business cards! Use the rafflecopter widget below for your entries, remember as always, the first entry is easy-peasy! (and of course keep a look out for fun and fast extra credit entries too!) Hurry this giveaway ends on St. Patrick's Day!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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FTC Disclosure: Tiny Prints provided us with Custom-Designed Business Cards for editorial consideration, and will be providing 100 cards for one winner. Sponsor is responsible for prize fulfillment. Neither Ascending Butterfly nor contest sponsor will be held responsible for lost or mis-directed mail. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission 16 CFR, Part 255 - Guides Concerning the use of endorsements and testimonials in advertising, you may check our Giveaway and Disclosure Page for additional information regarding Ascending Butterfly Disclosure. All opinions are 100% my own! RRRUK88F2KC4

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Ty Burrell Talks About @DWAnimation Film #MrPeabody & Sherman! #Movies

Last year, (yes I said LAST year), I got the chance to attend a very special sneak preview of DreamWorks Mr. Peabody & Sherman that was followed by a Questions and Answers Sessions with Ty Burrell, voice of Mr. Peabody!

Ty Burrell answered all of our questions and also took time to take pictures with us all!

Here is the video of the Questions and Answers Session:

Here is my photo with Ty Burrell!

Ty Burrell Talks About DreamWorks Animation Film Mr. Peabody & Sherman, Movies

My Take:

Mr. Peabody & Sherman is super fun for kids (and kids at heart) of all ages, and really made history come to life in a fun way that will grab the attention of the kiddos without boring the 'parental units' (or in my case the Auntie)!

I love how generous Ty Burrell was with his time also!

Once you have had an opportunity to see the movie, feel free to come back and sound off here and let us know what you think butterflies!

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FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a Sponsored Post. Ascending Butterfly was invited to an Advanced Sneak Preview and Talent Roundtable, no monetary compensation has been received to share our recap coverage of this event. All opinions are 100% my own.

Monday, March 3, 2014

The 10 things your Life/Career Coach is too afraid to tell you! #MotivationMonday

A Bra Specialist can look at you and tell your bra size quite accurately BEFORE she even measures you. A shoe store associate can usually look at a foot and also pretty much accurately guess your size and foot width. And while we hate to hear this, an HR professional makes their final assessment within the first 10 minutes of the job interview.

A Life or Career Coach come into play when you want to manifest change in your life or career. It's hard for the Coach to do their job when they quickly realize that it's only YOU and your attitude standing in your way. The quote "Attitude Determines Altitude" has lasted this long for good reason!

The Top 10 Things Your Life/Career Coach is too Afraid to tell you:

(1) It's not your boss, it's YOU - How you react to your boss and his/her demands are going to determine how far you will go. I am not telling you to brown nose your way to the top, however I am telling you as a Career Coach, that this is the most vital relationship you have in your career arsenal. Remember, even leaving a job of your own accord will require a job reference. And in Life Coaching this applies to the relationship you feel most stuck in, the one you feel that is not moving forward but backwards. Be it your in-laws or that BFF you think you may be 'outgrowing'...

(2) You Must Pay Your Dues - You are not going to become CEO in a year. Don't be afraid to pay your dues.

(3) Procure a Mentor - You want to touch base with someone doing the job you want to have eventually. It's OK to go outside your organization to find that person. In fact, that is the better way to go, you want someone who you can be frank with and who can also feel free to be frank with you about their path to success.

(4) Relationships are a two way street - If your theme is constantly about how every relationship has wronged you, your coach may be too afraid to tell you that you are sabotaging your relationships by the way you react to things that are not to your liking.

(5) Presentation is half the battle won - It's not just the job interview where you should whip out your best suit, dress for the job you want, not the job you have. If the top salesperson calls in sick and a major account needs attention, who do you think the boss will ask to pinch hit? The person in jeans or the suit?

(6) Yes, Peer Socialization is necessary - Those myriad of after-work team-building events, do you really have to go? YES, you have to go. Your peers are in the trenches with you, and if you can all support each other, you all win.

(7) You get what you give - Selfishness will hold you back from the life you really want. Be it the green-eyed monster, or pushing your agenda to hold someone else back, you get in life exactly what you give. If you spend countless hours telling your life/career coach how selfish everyone is around you, they are going to easily spot that the selfish Sally in those relationships is really YOU.

(8) Stop making cross-lateral job transfers - Your job trajectory needs to go up, if you spend years just moving sideways it's going to be harder to go up the next time you make a job move. Aim to build a career with an upward trajectory. (Because dearies, only crabs walk sideways!)

(9) Don't let moss grow under your feet - If you can't find the job you want, keep searching and portion out a part of your week to volunteer. Volunteer work is just that WORK. It allows you to give back to your community in a relevant way and still build necessary job skills. The busier you are, the more attractive you are to a potential employer.

(10) Define Success Clearly - How do YOU Define Success? Don't tell your coach how your mother and father define success. Or how your spouse defines it. Or your siblings for that matter. Yes you need to make enough to cover your bills, but at the end of the day, amassing money and then having no time to enjoy it, is something I am sure we can both agree is fruitless.  No Life/Career Coach can take your career or life to the next level until you know exactly what success looks like for you. Visualize it. Do you picture yourself in a garden with blooming flowers? With a smiling family? In an office at the top floor? Bring your Life or Career Coach a picture of how you define success, then and only then can they help you get there!

My Take:

The only thing that tends to stand in the way of our own success, is US! We tend to be our own harshest crtics, we tend to think status quo is better than change and we get stuck in ruts that for the most part we create for ourselves.

Before reaching out to a Life or Career Coach, start by tapping into what success looks like for you, what position you want to be in and be sure you are ready to knock your life and career status quo on it's head. Change sometimes comes with sacrifice. A life/career coach is not your fairy godmother, they can't wave a wand over your head and put you straight into your dream life. Define Success for yourself and then once you have that vision, there is absolutely nothing wrong with seeking the help of an expert to guide you on how to achieve it.

And lastly as someone who has been coaching for awhile now, my biggest tip is that a life/career coach is NOT your therapist, while it's super easy to get that confused, your therapist digs into your past, your life coach looks forward (not backward) into how the immediate can be re-shaped to look more like YOUR vision of true success.

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FTC Disclosure: This is NOT a Sponsored Post.