Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised! Summer time is here!

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Summer time is here!  This post is sponsored by Foster Farms®, but all opinions are 100% my own.

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

Last week I took Field Trip Boy and Field Trip Girl to our local lake for the first time this summer.  They have been asking for months to go swimming and there was no better time than the present!

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

To celebrate the occasion, I packed a picnic lunch and made one of my favorite all-time favorite dishes, Chicken Pasta Salad.

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

For my Chicken Pasta Salad, I prefer to use Foster Farms® Simply Raised chicken.  As a California native, it nice to know that Foster Farms® chickens are locally grown on the West Coast and American Humane Certified.  Plus Foster Farms® have been family-owned and operated since 1939 and their chicken is widely available throughout California at select supermarkets and Costco.

As a mom, I appreciate the fact that Foster Farms® Simply Raised chicken uses no antibiotics, 100 percent vegetarian feed, 100 percent natural (minimally processed, no additives or preservatives, steroids or hormones) and produced with no added sodium.

Foster Farms® chicken is truly healthy for my little family.  According to a new independent survey of over 1,800 West Coast Millennial households (conducted by Metrix Lab and sponsored by Foster Farms), millennial parents are driving the demand for antibiotic-free and organic poultry and meat, citing “organic” or “no antibiotics” as the most important factors in choosing fresh chicken.  I couldn’t agree more!RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply RaisedTo make my Chicken Pasta Salad you will need the following ingredients:

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

 

makes 12 servings

  • 1b. Foster Farms® Simply Raised skinless Chicken Breasts  ($6.49/lb)
  • 8 ounces corkscrew-shaped pasta
  • ¾ cup Italian-style salad dressing
  • ¼ cup mayonnaise
  • 10 slices of crispy bacon
  • 1 cup sliced Muenster cheese
  • 1 cup chopped green bell pepper
  • 1 cup chopped red bell pepper
  • 1 cup cherry tomatoes, halved
  • 1 cup chopped avocado
  • Salt & Pepper

Directions:

Layer the fresh Foster Farms® Simply Raised skinless chicken breasts in a crockpot and cook on high for approximately 4 hours.

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

While the chicken is cooking boil the noodles.  Once the noodles are done, drain them under cool water, and set them aside in the fridge until later.

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

Next fry the bacon until crispy and cut into smaller pieces.

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

Cut up the green and red peppers, tomatoes, avocado and muenster cheese accordingly.  Set aside in the fridge.

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

Once the chicken is done cooking, cut it into bite size pieces.

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

Next mix the ¾ cup Italian dressing in with the ¼ cup mayonnaise.

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

Finally, add in the chicken, bacon, green and red bell peppers, tomatoes, avocado and muenster cheese.  Mix all the ingredients together until thoroughly covered with dressing.

Add salt and pepper to taste.

RECIPE: Chicken Pasta Salad with Foster Farms® Simply Raised

Serve and enjoy!  This salad also goes along nicely with crusted bread.

Happy Summer Field Tripping!

Jilleen

This post is sponsored by Foster Farms®, the opinions expressed are my own.

Get Discount Tickets to See Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions in LA on Saturday, July 11!

Get tickets for as low as $14 to see Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions: Orchestral Adaptations of the Video Games at the Greek Theatre in LA on July 13 at 8 pm!

photo credit: Pokemon.com

This post contains an affiliate link.

As a second grader, my son just discovered Pokemon cards.  I know we are a few years behind the Pokemon trend, but now my household is in it 100% full force!

At first I was reluctant to buy my son any Pokemon cards, but now I like them too.  The arithmetic alone my son has learned by having a “battle” with the cards is very educational.  I see his mind working all the time as he adds up large sums of numbers and plays with the cards.

Today I discovered that a new show called Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions: Orchestral Adaptations of the Video Games is coming to the Greek Theatre in LA on Saturday July 11, 2015 at 8:00pm.  And tickets are currently available for as low as $14!

“If you thought the music of Pokémon was cool coming out of your gaming console, wait until you hear this. Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions gives both seasoned fans and newcomers to the video game series the chance to experience the sonic evolution of the Pokémon franchise like never before — with the American Festival Orchestra in concert.  Share your passion with other Pokémon devotees as the symphony performs music from the original version of the game up to the latest releases. These all-new orchestral arrangements feature carefully timed visuals to draw you into the world of Pokémon at the Greek Theatre in Los Angeles.”

To purchase tickets to see Pokémon: Symphonic Evolutions for as low as $14, please visit here!

Happy Field Tripping!

Jilleen

FREE: Tour a Real Working Farm in Ventura County on September 26! (Save The Date)

Tour A Real Working Farm In Ventura County On September 26!

photo credit: Nicholas A. Tonelli

I love farm tours!  My children and I have been on several field trips to various local farms throughout Southern California.  Each time we go we learn something new about where our food comes from and how it produced.  So much so, that last February I wrote a blog post entitled 20+ Farm Tours for Kids in Southern California.

On Saturday, September 26, SEEAG (Students for Eco-Education and Agriculture) is pleased to invite the public to visit and tour over 20 working farms in Ventura County for the 2015 Ventura County Farm Day!  Self guided tours run from 10 am to 3 pm.

This FREE, multi-location and self-guided event will feature unique tours, hands-on activities, educational demonstrations and an artisanal farmers market that will showcase the farmers and farm lands that produce foods and goods such as lemons, strawberries, tomatoes, onions, avocados, olives, goat milk soap and more!

Participating farms include:

Camarillo

  • Houweling’s Tomatoes – Come tour a world-renowned greenhouse tomato facility and sample delicious hydroponically grown tomatoes.
  • McGrath Family Farm – Pick your own organic strawberries or shop in season at their roadside farmer’s market right off the 101 Freeway in Camarillo.

Fillmore

  • Chivas Skin Care – Meet their goats, pigs, tortoises and chickens, and learn how they handcraft goat milk soaps. Tours on the hour, soap showroom open all day.
  • Bartels Ranch – Tour and learn about everything you wanted to know about Valencia oranges.
  • Otto & Sons Nursery – Tour their full selection of roses, fruit trees, berries, and general landscape plants.

Ojai

  • East End Eden Farm – Meet and greet the Farmer Connor Jones, and tour a permaculture food forest with a large variety of fruits and vegetables, as well as goats, pigs, chickens and more.
  • Friends Ranch – Ojai citrus history, family lore, fresh-squeezed juices and taste tests ​of​ a variety of seasonal citrus fruits. On this special farm day folks will be allowed to squeeze their own cup of juice and taste the way real orange juice should taste! There will also be a blind taste test of fresh-squeezed orange juice versus some of the popular store brands.
  • Ojai Valley Olive Oil – Tour olive press house and taste cold-pressed olive oil.

Oxnard

  • AQC Laboratory – Tour a high-tech laboratory that specializes in agriculture and food safety.
  • Deardorff Family Farms – Tours of our LEED Certified, sustainable, “green” facility will be every hour starting at 10:15. We will have 2 tours going on, led by Scott Deardorff, one of the owners of Deardorff Family Farms, and Joe Diaz, our Facility Manger. Each of the 2 tour groups can have about 20 guests. Christine Smith will be at a booth in front of the building, sharing about DFF and letting guests sample fresh produce!
  • Duda Farm Fresh Foods – Walking tour operation with viewing of fresh-cut celery facility. Display of products and samples given out prior to departure of guests.
  • Gill’s Onions  – Visit one of the largest fresh-cut onion operations in the nation and the 10th largest grower on the West Coast. Learn how this processing plant in Oxnard is 100% waste-free by turning its onion waste into bio-fuel to generate electricity.
  • Mission Produce Avocado Packing House – Tour one of the largest avocado producer’s packing house in Oxnard. See all the steps, from washing to grading, to shoring and packing avocados.
  • San Miguel Produce – Tour a packing facility that is a vertically-integrated grower, and fresh-cut processor and shipper specializing in dark leafy greens with brands San Miguel Produce, Cut ‘N Clean Greens, and Jade Asian Greens.

Santa Paula

  • Hansen Agricultural Research and Extension Center – Tour a farm that has a very active education outreach program. Hansen has 4-H youth agricultural literacy programs including farm field trips and classroom outreach serving K-5th-grade students countywide. Additionally, the Center is an approved site for the VC Master Gardener Program.
  • Limoneira Ranch – With nearly 3,200 acres of agricultural production in Ventura County and 11,000 total around the globe, Limoneira is one of the largest providers of lemons and avocados in the United States. Tour the grounds from a hay ride and tour their historic visitor’s center. The End-of-Day BBQ will be held at Limoneira’s north lawn starting at 4 pm.
  • The Painted Pony Farm – Wool washing, goat milk soap making, apple pruning, seed collecting and late season apple picking. We will have goat milk skincare products and imprinted t-shirts,bags and hats for sale.

Saticoy

  • Petty Ranch – Meet-and-greet the farmer, U-pick, citrus, avocados, figs and other speciality fruit.

Somis

Ventura

  • Rincon-Vitova Insectary – Take a tour of a producer and distributor of beneficial insects and other natural organisms for biological, organic pest control.

After tour hours have concluded, locals are invited to enjoy a rustic outdoor BBQ at Limoneira Ranch in Santa Paula starting at 4 pm.  The BBQ will feature live music by Grammy Award-winning artist Todd Hannigan, a kiss-the-farmer photo booth, tractor rides, gourmet salads prepared by farm-to-table Chef Jason Collis, craft beers from Poseidon Brewing Company, small batch wines from Four Brix Winery and barbecue fired up by the Young Farmers & Ranchers of Ventura County.  Tickets to the Limoneira BBQ are available for purchase online now.

For more information about Ventura County Farm Day, please visit www.venturacountyfarmday.com

Happy Field Tripping!

Jilleen

Disclosure: This post is for informational purposes only.  All points of view are my own.

Help after surgery with Gain flings!

As a member of The bLink Marketing Network, I participated in this sponsored post written by me on behalf of Proctor & Gamble.  All opinions are 100% my own.  #LaundryRedefined!

Gain flings is a great item to use after surgery to help lighten your work load!

Two months ago, I had a minor out-patient surgery at my local hospital.  Recovery was not easy, but thanks to my wonderful husband and mother and the help of Gain flings!, I was able to get back on my feet fairly quickly.

At my pre-op appointment, my doctor advised me that I was going to need to take it easy and relax for the next six weeks.  I would also not be able to bend or lift anything heavy.

Gain flings is a great item to use after surgery to help lighten your work load!

My first thought was “who’s going to run my household?”  My family relies upon me to keep everybody and everything afloat.  How was the laundry going to get done?  What about the dishes?  Who was going to take the children to school and so on.  I ruminated about my upcoming surgery for days.

But then…things just fell into place.  My already helpful husband pitched in and took on even more household chores.  My mother came down to visit and took care of me for a few days while I recuperated in bed.  We ordered a lot of take out.  And things slowly, but surely, started to return to normal.

Looking back now, there are a few key things that really helped in my recovery – my family, friends and particularly the use of Gain flings!.

You see, normally I don’t like to do laundry.  In fact, it’s one of my least favorite chores.  But after having surgery, the task of doing laundry became physically painful for me.  So that’s when Mr. SoCal Field Trips stepped in to save the day!

For six weeks he carried the laundry downstairs for me.

Gain flings is a great item to use after surgery to help lighten your work load!

He tossed it in the laundry machine.

Gain flings is a great item to use after surgery to help lighten your work load!

And then added Gain flings! to the load and started the cycle.  Over and over again, he did the laundry while I recuperated.

Since I could not lift anything heavy, such as a typical laundry bottle, we used Gain flings! to make the task easier.  Sometimes after Mr. SoCal Field Trips loaded the laundry, I would toss in a Gain fling myself and press the start button.  It did not require much effort on my part.

Gain flings is a great item to use after surgery to help lighten your work load!

Not only are Gain flings! easy to use, they’re easy on the nose too.  With 50% more of the scent we love, plus Oxi- Boost and Febreze, our clothes were left clean and fresh.  That’s a good feeling to have when you are required to sit around in sweats all day and recover from surgery!

Plus Gain flings! work in all types of washing machines and water temperatures.  Just remember though, like any other household cleaning product, it’s important to keep laundry pacs stored away and out of the reach of children at all times.

To learn out more about Gain flings!, you can connect with them on Facebook, Twitter, and You Tube.

Thanks to my recovery team and Gain flings!, I was able to get back on feet in no time and resume my normal responsibilities as “domestic engineer” for my family!

So now its your time to share – what’s your least favorite household chore?

As a member of The bLink Marketing Network, I participated in this sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Proctor & Gamble. The opinions and text are all mine.

A Picture Tour of Sea Life Aquarium at LEGOLAND California Resort!

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!Earlier this month, I took my daughter to the grand opening of LEGO Friends Heartlake City at the LEGOLAND California Resort in Carlsbad.  While at the resort, we decided to stop by the SEA LIFE Aquarium to check it out.  It was our first time visiting this small, but huge-on-fun aquarium located right next to the main theme park.

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

SEA LIFE Aquarium is an interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays.

The aquarium is home to more than 200 species of sea creatures that total to over 5,000 individual aquatic animals including sharks, rays, seahorses, clownfish & octopus.

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

I was particularly fascinated with their Giant Pacific Octopus.  I never knew that octopuses have three hearts and blue blood.  We were lucky enough to catch the octopus with his tentacles open wide.

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

Field Trip Girl enjoyed walking underneath the 35-foot-long ocean tunnel and exploring the Lost City of Atlantis, a 200,000 gallon ocean display featuring sharks, rays and a vast array of tropical fish.

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

The aquarium also recently unveiled a new exhibit called the Jellyfish Discovery, which offers guests a up-close look at more than 100 jellies (moon jellies, blubber jellies and spotted jellies) gracefully dancing around ceiling-high tube tanks with multi-colored spotlights.  They host daily educational talks for visitors too.

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

Outside Sea Life Aquarium has a touch tank with star fish for visitors to see and touch.  Here the aquarium attendant kindly scooped up a star fish with an abalone shell for Field Trip Girl to study.SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!!

Outside they also have a sand castle LEGO display and art project area.  Their friendly staff helped Field Trip Girl make a jellyfish craft out of an envelope.

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

Inside, if visitors are hungry, they can dine over at Ocean Journey Café to enjoy freshly prepared mini burgers, salads, macaroni and cheese, and more.

The cost of admission to Sea Life Aquarium for adults and children is $20.00 per person, but if you book online 7+ days in advance, you get 20% off!

SEA LIFE Aquarium is your child’s first interactive guide to the life of the sea, combining active hands-on learning with fascinating educational talks, and up close encounters with sea creatures including sharks, octopus & rays!

Happy Field Tripping!

Jilleen

Disclosure: This post is for informational purposes only.  All points of view are my own.