Over The Top Mommy

Let’s Eat!

Spread the Love With SNICKERS® Teacher Emergency Kits! (With Free Printable) #EatASnickers

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser.  All opinions are mine alone. #EatASnickers #CollectiveBias


I absolutely LOVE teaching first grade! My students are so adorable and at that age, they’re like little sponges that soak up just about everything you teach them. Many times, their questions are super random and adorable, too!

i-heart-first-gradeIt takes A LOT of energy and enthusiasm to keep up with my first graders though, especially in the afternoon. I’m pretty powered up in the morning from my coffee, but in the afternoon, I sometimes wish I had a pick me up to get me through to the end of the day. We have a very long stretch from lunch to dismissal and I sometimes feel like I start to “lose my enthuse” when I start to get hungry!

SNICKERS-personality-barsHave you seen these adorable SNICKERS® bars at Walmart yet? They’re in the check out aisle and each one has a different “personality” on the wrapper.

SNICKERS-personality-bars-checkout-aisleSome of the labels are pretty funny. I couldn’t decide which one described me best when I get hungry so I bought them all! I’m pretty sure I’m a “Drama Mama” at all times though, not just when I”m hangry! I took them to my classrom to stock up my desk so when it’s hungry o’ clock, I can sneak bites when my students aren’t looking! Shhh, just don’t tell them. Every SNICKERS® is packed with roasted peanuts, nougat, caramel and milk chocolate and they hit the spot every time.

SNICKERS-Drama-MamaI also decided to spread the love to the other teachers on my grade level because there’s no way I’m the only one experiencing those mid-afternoon pangs of hunger and bouts of energy loss. I put together some “Teacher Emergency Jars” to bring to work and surprise them with.

SNICKERS-teacher-survival-kitHere’s what you’ll need to make your own “Teacher Emergency Jars“:

  • SNICKERS® bars (about 5-7 regular size bars fit in each Mason Jar)
  • 1 Mason jar for each kit you plan to make. I found a super cute one with a brightly colored lid.
  • Decorative ribbon, burlap, or even tulle of your choice. I went with some blue tulle for mine.
  • tape or washi tape
  • “Teacher Emergency Jar” printable (Download yours for FREE by clicking on the image below.) You could also use a handwritten label.teacher-emergency-jar-printable-trio (1)

These are very simple to put together. Here’s how to assemble yours:

  1. Remove the lid from Mason Jar and fill with the SNICKERS® bars.
  2. Print out my printable I printed mine out on cardstock because it’s a little sturdier. You can also make your own, or even hand write something to stick on the jar. Use either tape on the back of it or a couple pieces of washi tape to stick it on the front of the Mason Jar. Don’t worry about the washi tape not looking perfect. It’s supposed to look sporadically placed.
  3. Replace the lid and close up the jar.
  4. Tie some ribbon or tulle around the top of the jar.
  5. Give to those special teachers in your life.

assembling-teacher-emergency-jarI guarantee that any teacher who receives one of these will be appreciate of your thoughtfulness, especially because it includes SNICKERS®!

So who are YOU when you’re hungry? Take the super fun SNICKERS® quiz below to see who you are when you’re hungry. (I took it and got “Drama Mama”! No surprise, right? )

[playbuzz-item url=”https://www.playbuzz.com/joemurphy10/a-who-are-you-when-youre-hungry” info=”true” shares=”false” comments=”false” recommend=”false”]


Savannah Chop House: You Can Taste The Passion Behind The Cooking! #SavannahIsBack

The opinions in this article are my own. I do not work for, or with, any brand mentioned in this article, nor do I have any official relationship with them.  I have a relationship with Gigasavvy, for whom I create original editorial content.Savannah-Chop-House-FacadeUp on a hilltop in Laguna Niguel, sits an eatery called Savannah Chop House. Offering breathtaking, ocen views and an menu that makes a foodie’s heart happy, Savannah Chop House is the perfect location for any occasion whether it’s a date night, a girls’ night out, or a special family dinner.

I was invited to a media tasting as a guest of Savannah Chop House and Giga Savvy, featuring an eclectic collection of dishes prepared by their Executive Chef, Chris Tzorin. Let me just tell you now, I could literally taste the passion behind his cooking every time I took a bite.

Savannah-Chop-House-Chris-TzorinChef Tzorin shared a little bit of his personal story with us and I already felt like we were getting a peek into his world where perhaps, many people aren’t invited. One of the first statements out of his mouth was “Food is my therapy“, about which he was referring to his craft of cooking! Chris has had a series of personal challenges that he’s managed to hurdle over and  move forward from. He also shared with us that the way he handles the reality of these things is to cook for others and make people happy with his amazing culinary creations! It’s obvious he’s been blessed with crazy cooking skills! (That means he’s an amazing chef)

Savannah-Chop-House-Executive-ChefLet’s take a look at some of the menu that our group got to enjoy. I apologize if the pictures and descriptions make you hungry. (Actually I don’t). However, you too, can visit Savannah Chop House and get some of your own!

Savannah-Chop-House-CocktailWe were treated to some tray passed appetizers upon arrival, which included Savannah’s Signature Recipe Bruschetta, Grilled Proscuitto Wrapped Shrimp, and Smoked Salmon on a Toasted Point. We nibbled on our appetizers as the sun continued to set over the ocean.


Savannah-Chop-House-Smoked-SalmonThe first course was a delicious Tempura Stuffed Zuccini surrounded by Herb Goat Cheese & Sundried Tomatoes and served atop Baby Mixed Greens. The presentation was beautiful and I loved the flower garnish. If there weren’t other courses to follow, I would’ve asked for a few more of these.

Savannah-Chop-House-Tempura-Stuffed-ZucciniThe second course was a choice between 2 light, refreshing salads. The Caesar Salad is made with croutons, fried capers, Parmesan and topped with their House Caesar Dressing. The other salad, a Watermelon Beet Salad, is made with a mixed blend, candied pecans, and Goat Cheese and topped with an Herbal Vinaigrette.


Savannah-Chop-House-Watermelon-and-Beet-SaladThe third course, which was the main course, was Surf and Turf! When I looked down and saw a Filet Medallion with Shrimp Scampi with Mashed Potatoes, Brussels Sprouts, and a Cabernet Reduction on my plate, my heart was happy!

Savannah-Chop-House-Surf-and-TurfRegardless of how full I think I am, I ALWAYS have room for dessert! Although we had a choice between 2 different desserts, I opted to try both the Warm Flourless Chocolate Cake with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream, Berries & Chocolate Sauce and Strawberry Shortcake made with Vanilla Cake, Fresh Strawberries, and Whipped Cream!


Savannah-Chop-House-Strawberry-ShortcakeEvery dish that was placed in front of me was delicious and I’ve dreamt about returning for another meal since I left there that night! After dessert, when the guests started to leave, I stuck around for a special tour in the kitchen, led by the Executive Chef, Chris Tzorin. He showed us behind-the-scenes and talked about all of the preparation that went into the night’s menu. (I don’t think he sleeps!)

Chris’ father is also an amazing chef who is mostly retired now but came out to oversee what Chris was up to in the kitchen. I actually teared up when I took this picture. I see a man who is so passionate about his “craft” that it translates into every bite of the food he’s dishing up for his guests and I see another man who is an incredibly proud papa and looks content knowing that he’s raised an amazingly talented son! I love this picture!

I’d highly recommend you visit Savannah Chop House for an incredible dining experience of your own!

Savannah Chop House is located at:

32441 Golden Lantern

Laguna Niguel, CA 92677


Connect with Savannah Chop House on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


I’ve Got “The Inside Scoop” on Johnny Rockets’ Delicious Shakes! #ShakeMonth

The opinions in this article are my own. I do not work for, or with, any brand mentioned in this article, nor do I have any official relationship with them.  I have a relationship with Gigasavvy, for whom I create original editorial content.Johnny-rockets-facadeWith September being National Shake Month, Johnny Rockets decided to “shake it up” a bit by inviting a bunch of social influencers to their location inside Knott’s Berry Farm for a shakin’ good time and to get “the inside scoop” on their shakes! I love the family-friendly atmosphere at Johnny Rockets because it always seems like the staff has so much fun while they’re working! The crew assembled together to dance to “Car Wash” and really got everyone in the place up on their feet to join in.

workin-at-the-carwashAlthough we were there to sample some shakes, we were also treated to some of their delicious 100%  fresh all-natural beef burgers and grilled chicken breast sandwiches along with some of their signature sourdough onion rings and crispy, golden french fries!


johnny-rockets-onion-ringsThere’s something about the ketchup that makes it all taste extra yummy! I’m pretty sure it’s the signature ketchup smiley face served tableside, don’t you think?

Johnny-Rockets-ketchupIt was super fun to go back into the kitchen at Johnny Rockets for a shake making lesson! All of Johnny Rockets’ shakes are hand-dipped, & hand-spun and are made with the finest USDA certified premium vanilla ice cream, whole milk, quality ingredients and real whipped cream. I appreciate  that Johnny rockets is very conscious of food allergies and uses an entirely separate spindle for mixing shakes containing peanuts, to avoid cross contamination.

reeses-chocolate-peanut-butter-shakeWe all crowded around the prep area and first learned how to make their Reese’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake! It’s almost automatic for you to lick your lips and say “Mmm!” when you hear the name of this shake!

back-in-the-kitchenThe shake is made with scoops of real vanilla ice cream, whole milk, chocolate syrup, and Reese’s peanut butter SAUCE (yep, that’s a real thing).

Johnny-rockets-reeses-shake-pourAfter the shake is poured into a glass, it’s topped with whipped cream and garnished with mini Reese’s pieces and a half Reese’s peanut butter cup on top! It’s literally so good that it would make E.T. come back! 

Johnny-Rockets-Reeses-Chocolate-Peanut-butter-shakeJohnny Rockets is offering their Reese’s Chocolate Peanut Butter Shake at select locations through November 21st!
goosebumps-shakeNext, we got a sneak peek (and taste) of Johnny Rockets’ newest shake, created in collaboration with Sony Pictures and the Goosebumps movie….the Goosebumps Shake!  The shake is made with scoops of real vanilla ice cream, whole milk, chocolate syrup, and Oreo crumbles!

mmm-gummy-wormsAfter it’s mixed and poured in a cup, it gets a generous portion of whipped cream, more Oreo crumbles, and is garnished with gummy worms! I LOVE gummy worms!


the-goosebumps-shakeJohnny Rockets will offer the Goosebumps Shake beginning on September 21st at select locations. You’ll want to hurry into your closest location to try it because it’ll only be available for a limited time!

Thank-you-johnny-rocketsWe want to thank Johnny Rockets for inviting us to a fun afternoon out! You can find them on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


McDonald’s FREE Breakfast for Kids on Tuesday, September 15!

free-mcdonalds-breakfast As a parent, I understand the importance of breakfast for my daughter, first hand and always make sure my daughter has something to eat before walking out the door to school. I’m also a teacher and see it from a different angle too. Children who eat breakfast perform better in the classroom and have better concentration and problem-solving skills. Sometimes, busy morning schedules don’t leave a lot of time for breakfast, which can be a challenge on some days.

mcdonalds-free-breakfastAs students settle into their first days of school, participating McDonald’s restaurants throughout Southern California are helping get their year off to a great start….with a FREE breakfast. On Tuesday, Sept. 15, participating Southern California McDonald’s restaurants will offer free breakfast to kindergarten through eighth grade students. The restaurants will offer the breakfast from 6:30-9:30 a.m. Students younger than 13 yrs. of age are required to be accompanied by an adult when visiting a participating McDonald’s restaurant.
During this time, students can enjoy any breakfast sandwich, apple slices or Yoplait Go-Gurt low-fat strawberry yogurt, and milk! So awesome!


Spending Summer with the @OriginalBombPop….UNPLUGGED! {Giveaway} #BombPopMamas

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post. I was provided with products and compensation for writing this post. All opinions are 100% my own. 

Summer time is my favorite time! Since the days are longer, there is so much more time to fit in all of the things that you normally can’t during the busy school year. Every day has the potential to be something different! Every day could technically include something new to write about in the Summer Bucket List Journal. The possibilities during summer are endless!

summer-bucket-list-possibilitiesI’ve noticed this summer differs from last summer and the summers before that though. What I’m referring to is the increase in the use of technology in our home. I, too, am guilty of this, since I spend a lot of time online, working on my blog and sharing on my social media channels. The part that I’ve really noticed is my daughter being online more now too though.  I monitor her use of the Internet and she’s mostly looking up recipes, DIYs, and watching mom-approved You Tube channels such as Brooklyn and Bailey and EvanTubeHD, but I’ve started to be bothered by a noticeable increase in her usage.

unplug-and-get-outsideSo, I decided to be proactive and do something about it! Well, at least for a day! I planned a good old-fashioned summer day for us to spend together…UNPLUGGED! Yep! I was really inspired to recreate a summer day similar to one from my own childhood, when I came across Original Bomb Pops at the grocery store. Oh my goodness! Talk about a blast from my past! I LOVED Bomb Pops when I was a kid!

who-remembers-theseThe difference between now and then is that back then we had to wait for the ice cream truck to come down our street to buy a Bomb Pop. Nowadays, they’re available at Pavilions and Vons stores! There is only one authentic and Original Bomb Pop! It’s red, white, and blue, has an iconic rocket shape, and includes cherry, lime, and blue raspberry flavors all in one!

bomb-pop-logoI used to love eating Bomb Pops as a kid because they made my lips red from the first layer and I would pretend like I was wearing lipstick when I was too young for makeup! Can anyone else relate to that?

originalOur day was so much fun! It’s amazing how much you can do that doesn’t involve technology! We drew and colored. We played Barbies. We played Monopoly. We had a picnic in the park. We rode bikes. We ate Bomb Pops. We went to the pool. We ate Bomb Pops! I know I already said that. We *may have eaten them twice during our day! They’re too good not to have two! Did YOU eat Bomb Pops as a kid? Have you eaten them recently? I feel like I’m late to the game, as an adult, but I’m going to be sure to keep this tradition going now with my own daughter!

enter-to-winI have something fun involving Bomb Pops and my readers! I’m part of a group giveaway with “Bomb Pop Swag” as the prizes! To celebrate the remainder of this wonderful summer, 8 lucky winners will receive a prize pack that includes a Bomb Pop hat, Bomb Pop beach towel and some special Bomb Pop stickers! Each prize pack will also include product coupons AND a gift card to your local retailer so YOU can buy your own Original Bomb Pops! How fun is that? All you have to do is enter in the Rafflecopter below! Good luck everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Learn more about Original Bomb Pops here. Connect with Original Bomb Pops on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.


Contest: Enter to Win a Southern California Staycation from McDonald’s When You #StaySoCalFresh! Southern California Summers Are the BEST!

This is a sponsored post however all opinions are 100% my own. 

socal-summers-are-the-bestSummer in Southern California is the best! After the hustle and bustle of the busy school year, I’m grateful to have the summer to relax and reorganize. I love the lazy mornings I get to spend with my daughter. I love staying in my pjs and drinking coffee as long as I want. I love all of the summer fruits. I love beach days. I love pool days too. I love summer sunsets. My list goes on. I just love summer!

summer-is-forI always feel healthier in the summer time. I snack on a lot more fruit and I find myself drinking more water, which is so important. This summer, I’ve notice myself craving salads more often. I’m kind of a creature of habit, so when I find something I really like, I often find myself eating it a bunch of times in a row.

cant-get-enoughThat’s how I feel about the McDonald’s Premium Asian Salad. I can’t get enough of them! If you haven’t had one yet, you’ll want to run out and grab one after hearing about how delicious they are! The salad is made with your choice of either a savory crispy chicken breast filet or juicy grilled chicken breast filet mixed with a variety of premium greens, including crisp chopped romaine, baby spinach and baby kale, topped with a vegetable blend that mixes edamame, red bell peppers, and snow peas, and finished with sliced almonds and mandarin oranges, and served with this delicious low-fat Sesame Ginger dressing that’s beyond YUM! For a vegetarian option, you can order the Asian Salad without the chicken. The salad is so ideal for anyone who’s constantly on-the-go and as you can tell by the description, it doesn’t skimp on flavor!

im-staying-socal-freshI did mention that I love the slower pace of summer but I do also still find myself on the go a lot, even in summer. My daughter is a very busy girl, so in between summer day camps, swim team and cheer practices, it’s very convenient to drive through McDonald’s and grab a quick salad to munch on while I wait for her. I usually ask for a glass of water to go with my salad. I think part of me just loves the cups they serve their drinks in right now! It seems McDonald’s and I are on the same page! You’re right, McDonald’s, a glass half full IS greater than a glass half empty!

postivie-outlookSo far this summer, I’ve found myself enjoying McDonald’s Premium Asian Salads in several different places. I’ve eaten one at the park, one by the pool, one at the beach, etc. I think you get an idea of quick they are to grab and how easy they are to take on the go. It’s all part of how I “Stay SoCal Fresh“.

enter-to-winNow you can win a Southern California Staycation from Southern California McDonald’s for showing how youStay SoCal Fresh“! Yep! One winner will enjoy three days, two nights at Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica. Enjoy a spa date for two and a $250 American Express Gift Card too!

Here’s what you need to do to enter:

  • Snap a photo showing where you are enjoying your McDonald’s Asian Salad.
  • Tag the photo on Twitter or Instagram with #StaySoCalFresh.
  • Follow @McDonalds_SoCal on Twitter.

It’s so easy to enter!  To read complete details and rules, click here.

Interact with Southern California McDonald’s on Twitter!

Gourmet Grilled Cheese at Boudin! Your Favorite Comfort Food Just Grew Up! #BoudinGrilledCheesePlease

boudin-bagI am a HUGE lover of Boudin, especially their San Francisco Sourdough bread! When I was invited to the Boudin SF in Huntington Beach for a media tasting of their latest line of gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches, I jumped at the chance to experience one of my favorite comfort foods all grown up!

After checking the littles into the “Kids Area” of the event to have their own fun, Boudin’s Corporate Chef, Alan Skversky, was on hand to chat about his latest gourmet grilled cheese creations with the “Mom Bloggers“.

welcome-mom-bloggersHe first spoke about his inspiration behind creating these delicious new grilled cheese sandwiches. He knew that he could take the already famous San Francisco Boudin Sourdough Bread and make something fabulous with it, something that people would oooh! and aaah! about. That’s exactly what we all did when we first saw them and then again when we tasted them!



great-grilled-cheeseThe Great Grilled Cheese is currently available on the Boudin menu. It’s made with Havarti Danish & Sharp Cheddar cheese melted on a parmesan-crusted sliced sourdough. You also have the option to add Applewood thick cut bacon to it. (for an additional fee) Is your mouth watering yet?


The Jalapeño Cheddar Grilled Cheese is new to Boudin. It’s served on their fabulous Jalapeño Cheddar Sourdough Bread with Cheddar cheese and sliced jalapeños inside of the sandwich. The flavor is amazing and if you’re worried about it being too hot, trust me when I say it’s not! I am a wimp when it comes to spicy foods and this sandwich was so yummy, I even had seconds. (and thirds).

brieThe third sandwich we got to try was the Grilled Brie with Apples & Fig jam. This one was as delicious as it sounds, too! It was almost like a dessert, which is why I saved it for last! It’s made with Brie and Havarti cheeses melted inside a parmesan-crusted multigrain bread and stuffed with sliced apples and fig jam. My mouth is watering just typing this! I think this was my favorite of the 3!

fig-and-brieNow it’s YOUR turn to get into your local Boudin & try one of these new and delicious gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches! I actually have a coupon, because Boudin REALLY wants you to try one of these gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches. You’ll receive one FREE kids’ meal with the purchase of any grilled cheese sandwich. Why not make a date with your little one? Just click here to get your coupon now!

Do YOU have a favorite menu item at Boudin? If you go and try the grilled cheese sandwiches, be sure to come back and tell me which one you liked best, OK?


Go Enter the Southern California McDonald’s Minion Mania Photo Challenge & Win Prizes! #SoCalMcDMinionMania

With the upcoming release of the new Minions movie, it’s no doubt that there’s Minion Mania going on during July at McDonald’s! Kevin, Stuart, and Bob have stolen the hearts of McFans everywhere!


In honor of Minion Mania, McDonald’s Southern California is encouraging you to show them how much you love these infectious Minion troublemakers! Beginning Monday, July 6, McDonald’s Southern California is launching their Southern California McDonald’s Minion Mania Photo Challenge!

minion-maniaFor 10 days, snap a photo of yourself that fits into each prompt. Share your photo on Twitter using @McDonalds_SoCal and include #SoCalMcDMinionMania. They’ll be picking one SoCal McDonald’s fan to win a summer prize pack valued at $500. The prize pack will include McDonald’s swag, movie passes, and tickets to events across Los Angeles. Here’s my photo for July 6: Something that makes you feel cheerful! What do you think?


C’mon everyone,  let’s take over everyone’s Twitter timeline with our fun photos!

Disclosure: This is not a sponsored post. Some images provided to me by McDonald’s. All opinions are 100% my own.

Dunkin’ Donuts To Open 2nd OC Location in Santa Ana!

DD-OCExciting news everyone…on Tuesday, July 7, at 5:00 a.m., Santa Ana is going to be opening the doors to Orange County’s 2nd Dunkin’ Donuts location! Santa Ana residents (and everyone else who drives from near and far) can now enjoy Dunkin’ Donuts iconic fresh-brewed coffee, delicious baked goods, and other menu items, such as sandwiches.

wake-up-ocThis new Santa Ana location will be a “Green Achievement™ restaurant”. What this means is it will use energy- and water-saving features such as LED lights, high-performance windows and low-flow faucets.

grand-openingLet’s talk about the Grand Opening celebration. Dunkin’ Donuts always has something special for the first person in both the walk-in and drive-thru lines at their Grand Openings. If you are the first person in either of these lines, you’ll win free coffee for one year!

free-coffee-for-a-yearAlso, the first 100 guests to order will receive a Dunkin’ Donuts tote bag filled with special items! Guests at the Grand Opening will have the opportunity to walk the Dunkin’ Donuts’ pink carpet, taste free samples, and have a photo opportunity with their beloved mascot, Cuppy!

IMG_3981 (1)There will also be a ribbon cutting ceremony with local dignitaries in attendance to commence the ceremonial grand opening ribbon cutting and welcome Dunkin’ Donuts to Santa Ana. The opening ceremony will also include a check presentation to the Children’s Hospital of Orange County. In alignment with Dunkin’ Donuts’ goal to support children’s health, the restaurant will donate $1,000 to help the organization meet the needs of children and families with first-class care and state-of-the-art facilities.

many_on_sheet_V 0003 The Santa Ana Dunkin’ Donuts is located at 100 S. Harbor Boulevard.

Connect with Dunkin’ Donuts on Facebook and Twitter. Also, sign up for your own DD Perks Rewards Card!