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Archive for September, 2011

Part of my endeavors as a consultant and blogger is to service my friends, family, and customers with great recipes using the Tastefully Simple products.  As of right now I’ll just be posting the ones that make their way to our tum-tums and leave only crumbs behind! 🙂 I decided to go simple with the first. I made it for my second taste-testing party at my dear friend, Val’s house.  I needed something that didn’t require much attention since I spent most of my evening prepping for the party and calming my nerves. It’s been a while since I felt like I was in high school speech class again. I had my 3 x 5 note card scribbled on with as many words as would fit and the entire speech was floating through my head. It was torture…

So..the recipe. Right.

I followed the suggestion card for the Simply Almond Poundcake and layered it with the Key Lime cheeseball. Garnish with red raspberries and wahlah, you have a gorgeous lookin’ dessert that took maybe 20 minutes to throw together, tops! Here you go…

Ingredients:

Pound Cake:

  • 1 1/2 sticks butter, melted
  • 1 c. water

Key Lime Cheese Ball:

  • 1 (8 oz) bar of cream cheese softened

Raspberries

Preheat your oven to 325 degrees. Mix butter and water with cake mix; blend well but don’t over mix. It should look lumpy.  Place in batter in greased 9 x 5 greased loaf pan. (loaf pan…haha…that just makes me chuckle!)

Bake for 50-55 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. (note: if hubby is helping you take it out of the oven because you’re taking a short rest on the couch from sheer exhausting of the week’s events, instruct him to check the cake with a toothpick…otherwise it may not be completely done and center can cave in. Not that that happened to us 😉   Make sure it cools completely then remove it from the pan and slice in half, lengthwise.

Mix your Key Lime contents with the cream cheese.  The powder is white but as you stir it magically turns green! Should look a lil like this…

  I nuked mine several times at 15-20 second intervals to get a thinner consistency. Since the pound cake is so moist, I didn’t want it tearing apart as I tried to spread the Key Lime mixture.  Spread half of your cheese mixture on the bottom half then gently place the top piece on. Spread the remaining mixture on the top of the Simply Almond Pound Cake. Sprinkle with graham cracker coating that comes with the Key Lime Cheeseball mix and place red raspberries on top. (Don’t mind the plastic wrap…I’m still workin’ on this whole take-a-picture-as-you-go thing. I forgot to snap this beauty’s portrait before I wrapped her up!)

Um…Yummo!  Add a sprig of mint and a dollop of whipped cream if you’re the Martha Stewart type.  Pretty sure I’m salivating just thinking of it…too bad there is none left.

If you can think of adding a twist to this dessert, let me know in the comments. I’d love to hear what you have to say!!

Tastefully Serving You,

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So being the new consultant that I am, I entered one of my parties completely wrong! Way to start out, eh!! In fact, even my sponsor told me to call customer service and see what they could do. You know it must be bad when your very successful upline tells you to get the corporate office to help you out.  I was really nervous because 1. I don’t like talking on the phone  and 2. My girls always have a melt down 30 seconds into any phone conversation.   I think they have little sensors on them that activate when I press “send” !

Let me just tell you that every single person I talked to throughout the whole process was exceptionally polite and very nice! Even if I was talking to the wrong person (which happened 2 times) they gladly directed me and were friendly about the matter.  Never once did any individual seem irritated that I screwed a few things up and they gladly sent me a certificate on my account for a certain amount of money!

Since Tastefully Simple’s corporate office is located in MN most of the customer service reps all had that Minnesota accident.  I couldn’t get Bobby’s World “Don’t yah know” out of my head!  🙂

My girls DID manage their breakdown, but I hid myself in our master bathroom until the first call was over.  I later dealt appropriately with the matter and I was once again whistling through the day.

End conclusion: If you have ANY questions or concerns don’t be afraid to talk to the big guys! They are there to help us and will do so in a friendly manner.  As a consultant if you mess something up while placing your order, their number is 1-866-448-6446. I had a great experience with my first real boo-boo!

Tastefully Serving You,

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Hard to believe that my very first Tastefully Simple party has come and gone!  It’s probably a good thing too, for the stress was killing me. The day of the party I had just enough time to drink 2 energy provoking cups of coffee and scarf down my lunch at 2 o’clock in the afternoon.  I do believe I swept the floor about 4 times and was starting to loose it when the hubster decided to mow the grass on a rainy day.  Did he not know that those bright green grass clippings would make their way all over the place?!?! I looked a lil like this.


Funny how often we have in our minds what we think or want the other person to do, only to find they do absolutely nothing in the ball park of what you were hoping. I chuckle now. I didn’t chuckle then.  You know what though? Ise is actually one of my biggest supporters. He had his moment of skepticism (ok, more like a day or two) but has become so very interested in the details of how things are progressing.  Sometimes we’re like oil and water, others we’re like maple syrup and a stack of warm pancakes!

Back to the party. So I was anticipating about 13-15 people. They always say, “expect less then you think.”  They were right, but my total wasn’t too far off. I was, however, thoroughly surprised at a few people who I randomly invited, came, and placed over a $50.00 order!  People, it pays (literally 🙂 ) to invite anyone you can think of.

Having never been to a Tastefully Simple party other then the one I shadowed AFTER I became a consultant (yes, I promise the food is that good!) I was somewhat frantic in the kitchen trying to prep everything. It was all made, but then you gotta transfer it to the buffet plates and soufle cups.  My sponsor Carrie totally helped me out, but took off the lids to the sauces. Yah, I hadn’t a clue what some of them were and looked perhaps extremely “green” with my lack of product knowledge. But hey, that’s why you’re surrounded with your friends and family for your first party. They all know, you know nothing! Plus, you can only get better, eh?

The evening progressed by briefing the guests on how the company got started and what you get when you decide to host a party of your own. We got our sampling on rather quickly since that was what the guests were there for! One thing I might change when I do parties, depending on the size of the group, is make the event a little less formal. In our setting the other evening, samples get passed around in a moving buffet style. You take a wee spoon, plop some gooey yumminess on your chip, and pass the plate on.  I feel guests are a little mislead. They are told to come hungry and ready for a fun night. Perhaps not everyone had their fill with a dollop of flavored Daisy the size of a dime.  I would love to try everyone having their own plate and taking a scoop of everything. We still sample the product in order and at the same time, but we’ll have a more home style feel to the process.  I know when I do my first party a la solo that I’m going to run out of things to say while the plate is getting passed around.

My mother-in-law ran over to the party after traveling all day from visiting her daughter in CT! She managed to snap a few pictures of the evening and captured the fun  we were all having!

A nervous me 🙂

The rest of the display

A surprised guest

They just can’t decided!

Just because they’re little doesn’t mean they didn’t want some yummy in their tummy!

The night ended with a bang.  When it was all said and done I ended up with over a $500 party. Deep down I wanted to be one of those girls who just blew the other consultants out of the water, but who knows where we would have been if I didn’t do what I did to get the orders I got.  So I made $150 bucks in sales and wrangled in another $50 for activating or fulfilling my first $400 in retail products before Oct. 14th. That was another bonus I wasn’t expecting when I signed up as a consultant.  I do believe the $200 for one party was worth it!  I recovered the cost of my Blast off Kit and made profit! I was just a wee bit giddy 😉  I booked 4 parties. Two of which were a complete surprise to me! The one gal who booked I didn’t even think would come…you never know how ONE person can make the difference at your party.  A few things I learned from my first experience:

1. Invite, invite, invite!       Doesn’t matter how well you know them or if you hadn’t seen them in 6 years. The more you invite the better chances you are of increasing your sales.  Some people only place a $12 -$20 order.  You must compensate by gathering more orders to get higher sales.

2. Create your own hostess incentive!   I had one person contemplate booking  a party but chose to do so simply  because she wanted the gifts that I put together. People LOVE free stuff. Don’t be too chinsy, and don’t be too elaborate. Make those gifts look enticing with a good wrap job and pretty bow.

3. Create a customer incentive!        My deal right now is when you spend at least $50 you get 10% off your next order. This not only helps to create a higher sale but encourages the customer to come BACK to you.  I had 2 customers that were originally going to place smaller orders but bumped it over $50 to get the coupon.  Customer incentives work!

I know there will be many more things I’ll learn as I go along. None of us are going to always do or say the right things to increase our sales and bookings or recruit another business consultant, but we need to learn from our mistakes and change our tactics.  We need to be real with our customers, hostesses, and team members.  Connect with them and let them know you care more about them then the dollar. You will reap greater rewards! Maybe not initially, but your business mentality will produce growth.  Think people first. Money second.

Tastefully Serving You,

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After days and days of anticipation the UPS man decided that it was time….it was time to relieve me of sleepless nights and anxious days and give me my Blast Off Kit from Tastefully Simple. They say that after you marry someone you become more like them. Well, if you knew my husband Isaac, you’d know that he doesn’t have the best of luck sometimes.  In fact, most of the time. Well, I’ve been married going on 5 years now and what they say is true. I just so happened to order my kit on a Tuesday (I do believe) and that means waiting ALL weekend. To some this is only 2 days but for me it was  2880 minutes. Sigh. Oh but wait. Monday was Labor Day…that’s 3 full days (for all you math majors) of no delivery time.  Perhaps the Lord was teaching me patience.  Perhaps I shall I comply quickly and forgo the continued lesson.

Back on track here…UPS man came,  he delivered, and he left.  He had no clue I’d be snapping his portrait for my blog, but he complied 🙂

I quickly whisked the 2 boxes into the house, feeling like a kid at Christmas who already knew what they were getting and couldn’t wait to use it! I took a look and noticed the outside of the box.



I’m sure every company out there wants you to think that your dreams will be met through them, but I truly hope that starting this little business will help some our family’s dreams come true.  Some small. Some great. But all through having this business! My 2 sentimental minutes were replaced by the tearing open of the boxes and having the little ones fight over who could pull the most stuff out first and pop the bubble wrap the loudest.

Overall I was pretty impressed with what I got, however, I thought there would be more business materials such as a calender book and a complimentary business card or two. I can’t complain, however,  since I got the Blast Off Kit 1/2 off…that’s getting 4 Party Plus Kits for the price of 2.  Not too shabby! I knew nothing of this deal when I signed up, so I’m taking that as a positive sign from the Lord 🙂 Most of the extras I got, not including the Party Plus Kits took up all of my small table. You also get the little stuff like spoons, cups, soufle cups ect. to pass around to you party guests.



I got my own little gift just for becoming a consultant! Right off the bat I made the Perfectly Potato Cheddar Soup and Bountiful Beer Bread using Sprite.  I was starving and used the only bread pan I had so we opted to wait for the Almond Pound Cake…although I really should get the the ball rolling with all of the scrumptious things you can do with one product! And that’s one reason I love Tastefully Simple. Each product is so versatile. You think, I don’t need another dehydrated onion or garlic mix. Oh, but wait. It’s like Insta-Dip right there! And you get what? 4-5 dip servings in each container! I will never buy french onion dip again!  Anyways, it’s a yummy product and every shipment I get I want more.

I’ve spent most of my time recently educating myself on how to be a successful consultant.  I know the odds are against m; somehow that is driving me harder.  A verse that popped into my head just before I signed up:

Jeremiah 33:3  “Call unto me, and I will answer thee and shew thee GREAT and MIGHTY things which thou knowest not.”

I think God wants us to dream beyond what we can imagine. Who knows what I’ll learn through this. I pray that we are blessed financially, but more so I pray I connect with people and share with them the joy that resides in my life.  Not because my business is growing,  but because of the God who saved my life. What is your dream and what are you doing to go after it?

PS  If you thought it took me 4 hours to change my theme, personalize it, and write this post, you were right. *shaking my head* Must get more efficient.

Tastefully Serving You,

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Hello guys! Here I am doing two things I never thought I’d be doing…writing and owning my own business.  I thought, well….this is the thing to do. Blog. I suppose it is a good way to let everyone know how things are going, not only in our family but also in the business world. We shall see if either of these avenues become successful,  especially since my creative writing skills are limited to a B- and I’ll probably end up buying more Tastefully Simple products then I sell. (And yes, I’m the only one who has placed an order thus far!)

You’ll have to mind the girly page layout. I went with WordPress because it was recommended and some of my favorite blogs are using it. Let’s just say that about over a span of 2-3 days and 7 hours later this is what we got. Sigh…I know. They do a great job at making what someone REALLY wants involve the act of  transferring your money into their bank account.  Since I’ve already dished out a relatively moderate amount of moolah for gettin’ my business rolling I guess the frilly stuff with just have to wait.

I suppose I should tend to my children now. They’ve watched one too many episodes of Caillou and the youngest firecracker has managed to declothe herself, including her diaper and is dancing around like a pied piper.  🙂  Have a great day everyone, and thanks for stopping by!

Tastefully Serving You,

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