La Madeleine French Country Cafe, Raleigh, North Carolina

Bon Jour! My New Orleans memories are many of the La Madeleine Country French Cafe, St. Charles Avenue. 

Living three blocks away during our after-college, yuppy years, we had many wonderful celebration at La Madeleine Country French Cafe! Lots of Mom and the Girls gatherings at La Madeleine.

It was right after our beautiful engagement to my glorious Boulder Mt. Man that flew home to New Orleans for Easter. My sweet Mommy and I sat in this particular La Madeleine and poured over great French Roast coffee and Bride Magazine, New Orleans Weddings, Martha Stewart Weddings and more.  Then, after a lovely time and great cuisine, we went and booked our Chapel for the Wedding. To be able to continue those lovely traditions and memories right here in North Carolina all these years later, is a dream come true!  We were so thrilled to discover La Madeleine's presence.

 My son loved the custom made Omelette. It was really delicious, light and fresh. So good. He said it was the best Croissant EVER! And the Tomatoes were the best, too. :) 


I'll just start with my order - the Quiche Florentine!  I loved the personal sized Quiche. So good and fresh.  

This is the fabulous Chicken, Bacon, Vinaigrette Salad! LOVED it! The portion was very generous.  So light and tasty. 

Homemade - La Madeleine made Lemon Tart extraordinaire.

One of the outstanding and fresh pasta dishes with fresh French Bread. :)

Sunday our family attended the early lunch to benefit Children's Hunger Fund. So, great food, memories and a wonderful cause!  We have a table full of food for (4). So much food to organize. lol 

Look at how delightful the French atmosphere is at La Madeleine's. 

A look at "A Bon Journey to France." Provence. Tres Bien! 

One more of the delicacies on the dessert menu! Chocolate Parfait deluxe! 


Are you convinced? :) How about a Shrimp French Crepe! in all of it's perfectness.  

Let the photos of our meals speak for themselves.  My sweet husband and I LOVE the Tomato Soup! For your information and wellness, La Madeleine sells quarts of the Tomato Soup!

It is divine!

Here is a sampling of the fabulous homemade Quiches and Oven Baked Sandwiches!

Here is a peak into the beautiful Cafe. the mahogany and brick are beautiful and leave a peaceful ambiance.  We love the office area where you can enjoy a Cafe au Lait and a Croissant while having a business or girlfriends meeting. Or, even a Day Date! :)

Isn't it beautiful!  Of course, being monogram obsessed, I loved the "L & M" monogram for La Madeleine! :)  We share some monograms! :)  Extra special, indeed. Don't you love this look.

The Dessert case is enough to spoil your appetite so you could go straight for desserts! :) LOVE these - the Lemon Tart, the Cafe au Lait Creme Brûlée and the Fruit Tart are all classic French goodness.

When you can, go check it out and enjoy la Madeleine Country French Cafe! 

Enjoy and Au Revoir!

Warmly, Carolina Mama

Haley and the Hound, Tie Neck Women's Dresses

Happy 4th of July!  
and Carolina Mama.   

To get you in the 4th of July mood, I'm sharing some awesome Summertime wear! You are going to love these Haley and the Hound Dresses.  Introducing the Coral Lattice Dress and the Floral Multi Color Tie Neck Dress in wonderful moisture wicking fabric that is wrinkle free! 

Just in time for all of your July 4th shopping needs, Haley and the Hound is offering a FREE T-shirt, look how cute! with any $50 purchase. And shipping is always free over $50 so get your shopping on!

Here is how I styled my Floral Multi Color Tie Neck Dress for a day of running errands after picking up my boys from swimming. It was a perfect compliment to my fedora. 

The rains came and I was not worried because the polyester and spandex blend is so comfortable, cool and it dries rapidly.  That is what makes the Haley and the Hound dresses ideal for all of you outdoor activities. 

If you LOVE Maxi Dresses like I do, Haley and the Hound has just what your are looking for in the same fashionable fabrics for Maxi Dresses. Again, the wrinkle free look is ideal for a Maxi, too so the fabric flows.

All the best and remember that Haley and the Hound is for Living the Good Life!

Warmly, Carolina Mama

FTC Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Haley and the Hound. All opinions are my own. 

Jarrett Bay Clothing, Beaufort, NC Madras Plaid Women's Long Sleeve Shirts

Jarrett Bay Clothing, of Beaufort, North Carolina offers custom designed clothing for Coastal Living! Ideal for everyone!

Jarrett Bay Clothing has an array of beautiful madras plaid with seersucker lining, long-sleeve shirts for women.  The pearl buttons with the Jarrett Bay logo are so stylish. I absolutely am loving these fashionable shirts for Summer and beyond. Let me tell you about it...

Here is a little more information about Jarrett Bay Clothing Co.

JARRETT BAY CLOTHING CO.Heritage, passion and craftsmanship earned us the distinction as the most revered custom sport fishing boat builder in the world. We're bringing the same mastery to our clothing. No cutting corners. No compromises. That's the Jarrett Bay way. We launched our first t-shirt designs in 1986, the same year we launched our first boat. Even then, we had the vision of stylish performance that would transform into what is today Jarrett Bay Clothing Co

Again, these are my favorite, favorite! This is no ordinary shirt.  In fact, I am tired of the "boyfriend" shirts that are sloppy and masculine. With the Jarrett Bay Women's shirts,  you will see the feminine details. Here is the Fuchsia shirt which is my favorite.

Here you can see these are a gorgeous color pattern. They are light-weight which is so perfect for Southern Summers.  I have the Fuchsia and the Aqua. It is difficult to choose a favorite as I love both! The Aqua is a beautiful color for Summer. I love that white and blue denim pair nicely with it.

Women's Long-Sleeve Button Up, Double Pocket Madras Shirt in Fuchsia.  There is even a pretty Navy Gingham Checkered option. Love this one, too.

You know, I love Maxi Dresses. So, look at this beautiful Jarrett Bay Striped Maxi Dress.  You can find more of the Jarrett Bay Maxi Dresses here. 

Check out the beautiful options at Jarrett Bay Clothing.  And join me for a fabulous and fashionable Summer!

Warmly, Carolina Mama

FTC Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Jarrett Bay Clothing, Beaufort, NC. All opinions are my own. 

Monkey Joe's, Raleigh, NC "It's Like A Banana Ocean!"

Welcome to a Guest Post by friend, Christie Funchess.  You all remember Christie from our 
Winning the Food Lion Frugal Cook Off together. We had great fun. It is a joy to 
Welcome Christie!
She will share about her experience at Monkey Joe's, Raleigh, NC. 
Christie is a Mom of 6 children, including 5 girls and 1 boy.  

Monkey Joe's Raleigh, NC 

"It's like a banana ocean!!"

Monkey Joe's Raleigh, NC

We were thrilled to be invited to visit the Monkey Joe's here in Raleigh. what a privilege to visit and "test it out!"  Are you serious? Yes, please. 


"It's like a banana ocean!!" The first words that came from my seven-year-olds mouth as she jumped into the first bounce house at Monkey Joe's. It was really great to take my six children to Monkey Joe's and see the five older girls loving all of the fun! It was wonderful for them to be so active and having such a great time playing in the 'Banana Ocean!" 

And the excitement did not end. Bouncing, climbing, giggling, playing, and more bouncing.


From my kids perspective, they had a spectacular time. So many bounce houses and arcade games to choose from. There was non-stop excitement from the time we walked in the door.


Side note: it's super hard for a non-photographer to get good pictures of bouncing kids ; )

They loved the huge slides. And I do mean huge.


My almost two-year-old especially loved the Clifford car and carousel.


I loved so much about the experience. First of all, I felt completely safe. Everything was clean, rules were posted clearly, and the staff was always around to watch and help out. As a mom with a baby in a stroller as well, I loved that I could easily maneuver around the attractions and keep my eyes on everybody at once.

There were areas especially for smaller kids and toddlers. And how genius were the massage chairs for adults? = ) Now, the parents can relax a little. 


We loved the snack shop as well. Here is a picture of the girls enjoying Pizza! :) They really worked up an appetite with all of the bouncing and playing! 


The staff were so generous to let the girls try out the menu. = ) Everything was a hit - pizza, pretzels, nachos. I loved too that the sides were easy, simple snacks that the kids might see at home. (not all sugar) = ) And free water to stay hydrated for all that bouncing - so thoughtful!


So if you asked me if Monkey Joe's was a good place to take the kids? I'd say absolutely! For Family Fun, Birthday Parties, a rainy day, an after-school surprise, a play date with other kids - Monkey Joe's is perfect for safe, get-the-wiggles out fun. The Carousel was so exciting for all the children! 


You can read more on their website about parties, events, their safety and sanitizing systems - I was honestly impressed. Of course, as a mom I read up on everything before we went. = )

Thank you so much to the wonderful staff at Monkey Joe's for such a treat. You guys get two thumbs up for sure! Thank you Carolina Mama for sharing such a fun opportunity with my little people!

Most of all, thank you Lord, for the many surprising gifts of grace you give every day!


Thank you to Christie! You can read more of Christie's writing on her blog at Little Steps, Big  Picture. 

Warmly, Carolina Mama

FTC Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Monkey Joe's, Raleigh, NC. All opinions are our own. 

Haley and the Hound, For Living the Good Life #MadeInUSA #ParkerTunic

Greetings from Haley and the Hound, Morehead City, North Carolina on the Crystal Coast.   Haley and the Hound is all about helping you define Living the Good Life. With the most stylish, versatile and comfortable apparel, Haley and the Hound keeps you fashionable. Let me tell you about it.

It makes me so happy to share with you one of the most beautiful and stylish North Carolina brands. Like many things, word of mouth is the best marketing. So, I was thrilled when my girlfriend's response to my "love your adorable top" was an excited, "Haley and the Hound!"

Quickly, I became a customer of Haley and the Hound. Now, I get to share with you. I love, love, love the fact that Haley and the Hound is Made in the USA! There is something authentic about made in America!

The Resort wear is beautiful and nautical. Since it is so fashionable and comfortable, it can take you from poolside to dinner table. I love the beauty and elegance. This styles are so classic and yet casual.

Here is another look at my Parker Tunic in Starfish Aqua.  I do adore it!

Here is a beautiful look at the Sleeveless Shirtdress in Blue Floral.  Enjoy a beautiful and polished appearance with this light and cool dress. 

 When you go to the Haley and the Hound website, check out the Look Book for more fun looks like these Chippendale Shorts and this Julia dress. You'll find all kinds of ideas for pool parties, picnics and BBQs and more!

How fun are the nautical Tee Shirts. I LOVE this one, The Dog in Pearls!  So awesome that they are 100% SC grown and spun cotton and custom dyed! Printed in NC!  In college, we always wore Pearls with our Tees, so this is a favorite for me!

Happy Memorial Day Weekend!  Also enjoy the Haley and the Hound SALE page for some super deals now!

Warmly, Carolina Mama

FTC Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Haley and the Hound. All opinions are my own. 

The Produce Box, Raleigh, NC #EatLocal

Welcome to The Produce Box!  This our first The Produce Box!  We chose a basic Harvest Box! WE LOVE eating North Carolina grown produce! And we love no chemicals and freshness!  I was so delighted when The Produce Box contacted me and said invited me to try out their service. We did! We're hooked! 

The Produce Box, Raleigh, North Carolina

This is our first The Produce Box!! To say we are smitten is an understatement! We love the produce and the service!  You can see our favorite things in this Harvest Box! Organic Kale, Spinach, Tomatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Strawberries, Green Onions and Green Bib Lettuce!


Here at Carolina Mama Blog, we LOVE all things North Carolina, and one of the epitomes of North Carolina homegrown goodness is The Produce Box!  We LOVE their LOCAL produce policy The Produce Box is a well run company with a system that is fantastic to navigate! They have organic options! Look at this beautiful batch of Organic Kale!


We tried it out and were pleasantly pleased! In fact, we're now Customers! We've ordered again and we plan to continue since we had such a positive experience. The Produce Box is exactly what we have been looking for in the fresh and local department. 

"The Produce Box delivers fresh, local produce and specialty products like meats, cheese, bread and a lot more to homes and offices all over North Carolina. We bring the farmer's market to your door! You can choose what you want to order and skip a week if you need to anytime. We help our members support over 70 local farmers and give back to their communities. In the past two years, we have purchased more than 2 MILLION pounds of produce from North Carolina! Our members are helping change the food system - one table at a time!" 

My son made this delicious FRESH The Produce Box Salad!  Everything on this salad is from The Produce Box. We added the Eggs. Although, you can order fresh local eggs in your box, too! 


My absolute FAVORITE feature of The Produce Box is that YOU choose your your selection each week!  Simply SIGN UP / REGISTER for The Produce Box. 

Then, the FUN happens! 

The Membership for the year is simple and reasonably priced at $18 per year which is paid when you sign up.  That's just $1.50 a month.  Once you have signed up for the year, you get to choose your favorites each week! If you are traveling, no problem, log on and choose the Skip Week option. It is that simple. You can even go through the year in once setting and choose all of your Skip Weeks. Love this! Then, if your plans change, no problem, again! You can just add in your favorite choices for that week. Save it and you are all set with your order. This is so customer friendly! 

Once you sign up, The Produce Box will send you an email (the Friday after you join) with your first week’s menu. The weekly menu features new boxes and individual items depending on what is available and in season. Then, you get to choose your items! You can choose a box and then add or subtract items from that box customizing it to your need or want! 

The choices are abundant and feature a variety of local specialties.  We cannot wait to try this week's Goat Cheese with Herbs from Hillsborough - right here in the Triangle! 

The Produce Box delivers Recipes with your box! That way you can use for your veggies in creative and tasty ways! 

I absolutely LOVE this video on how to Zest Citrus! I love Lemons, Limes and any citrus! So, this was something that truly helped me with my cooking! I plan to add the Lime Zest to my new Avocado Salad Dressing! :)  Yum!  

SIGN UP TODAY!!!  Enjoy your Local Produce! 

Warmly, Carolina Mama

FTC Disclosure: This post is sponsored by The Produce Box. All opinions are my own. 

Perfect Nutella Rice Krispy Treats, It Wasn't Always This Way

Nutella Rice Krispy Treats by CarolinaMama®

Tonight, I'm Rocking the Nutella Rice Krispy Treats!  It wasn't always that way.  This may seem trivial, y'all. Let me tell you, as a young (younger) Mom, Boulder Mt. Man and I were raising Toddler Twins and I struggled with the Rice Krispy Treat. I didn't know that Esther had so much to do with my Rice Krispy Treat making abilities. 

The worst of it is that I literally judged my mothering skills and commitment by my Rice Krispy 'talent!" Seriously, I struggled with the basic Rice Krispy! I know it seems crazy since I won the 2014 Raleigh Frugal Cook Off with Food Lion and all. Then, why did I ever make a too sticky batch of Rice Krispy treats!? I remember crying over Rice Krispy Treats that were so sticky and no matter what I did, they were stuck to my clean and well-buttered hands. It was like a quick sand I couldn't get away from it, no matter what.

God only knows, and I have to tell you, He also knows He had a lesson for me to learn. It makes tonights perfect little Nutella Rice Krispy Treats all the sweeter. Tonight, these are the BEST Rice Krispy Treats in the world. They were hard earned so to speak.

Tonight is different!

In all seriousness, it is interesting to me as a Mama of these precious 15 year old! twin sons, that I worried about Rice Krispy Treats when these boys were toddlers. Where was my heart?  To be honest, I think I was inadvertently allowing the enemy to intimidate me. Furthermore, I was allowing a simple thing like getting Rice Krispy Treats perfect to indicate my mothering to our twin sons.

All of the time took my mind off of why I made the boys Rice Krispy Treats in the first place. It took my focus off of why I want to be a great Mom at all.

So, weather you are a new Mama or a Mama to teens like me, just know that the little things do not matter. I could have broken out a spoon and fed the boys the rice krispy and they would have been thrilled! It wouldn't have mattered and I would not have been distracted with the perfection of my confections.

Recently, my son and I had a night out to see our local homeschool friends put on an incredible Esther Musical Play through the Spiritual Twist Productions. It was a blessed night and I was reminded of God's call on me through Esther 4:14.

Remember with me one of my most defining "Mom" verses, in those same "young Mom years," I was moved greatly by our Pastor Jeff Clark's Mother's Day sermon on Esther 4:14. "Esther, maybe you are called to the kingdom for such a time as this." 

For some reason, as a Mom, now, Esther totally made sense to me. God spoke to me in such away like I had never heard in Esther.  For Such a Time As This. 

In fact, maybe that Mother's Day was the turning point in my perfect Rice Krispy world i.e. my perfect mothering world. As our Pastor now, will tell you it is something about which he has taught us much. So, maybe it took me a while... yet, I am SO very grateful because of tonight, I didn't even expect my Nutella Rice Krispy treats to be perfect. :)

Then, I would have had time to be so very grateful for the moments we had sticky Rice Krispy Treats or perfect Nutella Rice Krispy Treats!

What are you struggling with in the perfection and expectations department of your mothering or life? Remember what matters "for such a time as this."