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Salad of the Week: 1-17-2017

January 17, 2017
Make this easy salad to meet your 2017 goals

The New Year is off to a good start for this mama.  Mostly because I have dedicated the next five weeks to ME!  It feels oh so good and then I feel oh so guilty at the same time.  I mean, salad prep and gym time cut into the hours of my day and leave me less time to spend sitting on the floor doing puzzles and playing Legos.  BUT, I have decided I need a jump start and it’s going to take full concentration on my health and fitness.  We work so hard year round and what do we get but a bunch of “ewww I don’t want that for dinner”, LOADS of laundry (some of which isn’t even really dirty, but our kids tried it on and were too lazy to put it back in their closets so it instead goes into the dirty basket-like we don’t know?), mess after mess to deal with whether it’s food being thrown on the floor by our littles, or this and that cluttering the counters each day and just piling up because mom hasn’t put it away. Then there is helping with homework, school projects, and being an after school taxi cab.

So when is it our time?

We can keep making excuses that are a mile long, believe me, my list is never-ending as are most moms.  But hey, let’s face it, we are never really going to catch up on that list in this lifetime.  So let’s start now, by eating healthier and focusing on ourselves just a little.  We will feel so much better about ourselves.  And our kids will also see this change and want to be part of it.  My 18 month old and 3 year old love digging into my salads, mostly because what kid doesn’t want to stab little things with a fork, but then once they try them, they can’t stop.  Full blown salad eaters in my house, spinach, carrots, artichokes, brussel sprouts…they eat them and don’t complain!  Crazy, huh?

Main ingredients for this yummy salad

all the chopped ingredients you need

Let’s—as moms—put us first, leave the guilt behind, and focus on eating healthier for the next 30 days!   After that we will have our jump start and be in the mindset to care more about ourselves.  We deserve this.  I mean, we have one body and if we neglect it to take care it, who knows what health issues will arise and if we will be around to experience years and years to come.

To make the dressing for the salad you will need these ingredients

 Cheers to another salad to kick-off 2017!

This one is actually easy to prep and makes a huge Tupperware full.  You may want to share this one and help another coworker or friend get on the salad wagon! The more you practice salad making the easier it gets. Trust me, after two years of salads weekly, I can whip these things out in no time!  And you will too!

A great salad that is easy to make and healthy


Roasted Butternut Squash Salad with Chickpeas, Kale, and Pearl Couscous

Prep time:  20 mins

Yield: 8 side dish servings, or 4 main course servings


4 Tbs apple cider vinegar

4 Tbs extra-virgin olive oil

2 tsp honey

2 tsp Dijon mustard

½  tsp salt

¼  tsp black pepper



1 butternut squash, peeled, de-seeded, and cubed into ½-inch pieces

2 Tbs olive oil

½ tsp salt, divided

⅛ tsp black pepper

1 C cooked whole wheat pearl couscous (according to package)

1 medium sweet onion, diced

5 oz kale, washed, de-stemmed, and finely chopped

1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained

Combine salad ingredients, mix salad dressing and enjoy!

Share your salad

Do you have any easy salads to make? Share in the comments below!

This post was written by Gordmans cooking extraordinaire, Lindsey.

Décor Fashion Series Shop

Top Shopped: 7/22/16

July 22, 2016

Summer is in full swing and shopping away a hot & humid day sounds pretty fantastic! What’s trending now? Pretty outdoor lanterns to spruce up your outdoor space. Dreamy white dresses and flattering swimsuits. Plus, fun games to keep the kiddos occupied on vacation road trips!

  1. Add a little romance to your front porch or backyard patio with this beautiful cream lantern.
  2. Fire up the grill and cook up some tasty treats, but don’t forget necessary gear like this silicone oven mitt.
  3. This royal blue reversible bedding set looks so luxurious but costs so little!
  4. Not only are they adorable, but these faux grass balls bring an outdoor freshness to your indoor decor.
  5. Summer weddings on the weekend agenda? This bejeweled, high-neck dress is a stunner!
  6. Put a little twinkle in the trees by hanging these glass jars with tea lights inside!
  7. Make a splash in this flattering tankini with skirted bottom.
  8. Sunny flowers that you don’t have to water? Yes, please. This burlap sunflower stem has the perfect modern farmhouse look.
  9. Keep the kids busy Finding Dory with this oversized puzzle!


Beauty Décor Fashion Series Shop

Top Shopped: 5/17/16

May 17, 2016

Looking to bump up your beauty routine? Clean up your kitchen? Or switch out your living room style? This round of Top Shopped website items features a great selection of frames, fragrances, pillows and more – all for under $15!

  1. America is definitely the beautiful with this flag-print metal star wall hanging.
  2. A touch of e.l.f. concealer under your eyes gives you a brighter, more awake look!
  3. We love the antique-look of this mason jar soap pump.
  4. Lucky you! This woman’s fragrance smells amazing and is perfect for summer.
  5. Keep your kitchen organized with this handy 20-piece food storage set.
  6. A classic black frame fits any decor, and is the perfect place to save those memories.
  7. This flowered pillow will stay blooming all summer, no water needed!
  8. Pretty, summer dresses call for simple and elegant jewelry like this rhinestone necklace and earring set.
  9. It’s not too early to start thinking about Father’s Day gifts, and this cologne is a great option!
Décor Fashion Series Shop Uncategorized

Top Shopped: 3/20/16

March 18, 2016

Spring has sprung and we’re excited about new styles going live (and selling out!) on the website. From plush pillows to garden accessories, to kitchen gear and brand name denim, hurry and get yours before they’re gone!

  1. Furry pillows in bright white add freshness to your living room, not to mention total comfort!
  2. Get ready to try out some new recipes with this classic cutlery set.
  3. Fighting Illini Footwear = the best way to support your team.
  4. One of the key ways to transition your wardrobe to spring is with a cheery new handbag!
  5. Swim season is upon us and Gordmans has amazing styles to choose from, like this lace-inset one-piece.
  6. Line your walkways with this pretty, crackle-glass light for a fairy-garden feel.
  7. Great-fitting denim is a must, and these name brand jeans will be his new favorite!
  8. Sketchers knows comfort, and these slip-on sandals will feel good and look even better.
  9. Looking to take your bedroom from blah to beautiful? This Brighton bedding set is perfect!
Food Party & Event Ideas Series

Leonardo DiCaprio Themed Oscar Party

February 25, 2016

It’s award season! Who doesn’t love the fashion, the drama, the movies, the parties?? It’s a great excuse to get together with friends to eat, drink and make merry during these last few dismal weeks of winter.

Hosting a great Oscar party is all about making the evening fun and relaxing for your guests, and being organized and prepared so you can enjoy the evening watching the show instead of slaving in the kitchen. When inviting people to an Oscar viewing party, it’s also important to emphasize that you don’t have to have seen any of the films or know anything about the event to still have a great time.

That being said…

Can we all agree that it’s Leo’s year to win??? Just give the man the award. One more year seeing his fake-smile-congratulatory-towards-his-fellow-nominees reaction might make us weep. It’s been established that he’s pretty talented. He’s been nominated a million times, right? It’s time celebrate these facts with a new, different, (and slightly obsessive) Leonardo DiCaprio themed party Oscar Party!

How to do it: Plan the menu and décor around themed delicacies all in homage to Leo’s dapper mug. Plus, include framed photos from his famed movie appearances next to each dish or drink to help guests make the connection.

Check out these super easy themed menu items that are simple to make and can easily be prepared in advance.

The Revenant – Gummy Bears: Is it too soon? To joke about bears? (This joke may only be relevant to those who have seen this movie…)

Django Unchained – Candy of any variety: What better way to play tribute to a character named, Candy, than with an awesome assortment of sugary treats. An assortment of theatre candy in colorful dishes is always a crowd-pleaser.

What’s Eating Gilbert Grape – Grape Parfaits: This is a fantastic, make-ahead, fancy-looking delicious treat that could not be easier to make. Use your favorite yogurt parfait recipe and substitute grapes for other fruit mentioned. Assemble the dessert in festive wine glasses for a very upscale, Oscar party-esque look featured within the buffet spread.

 Gangs of New York – New York Style Hot Dogs: Wanna get fancy? Wait for it…take little smokies and carefully cut standard hot dog buns to fit their tiny size. They become delightful little handheld savory snacks to balance out other sweet items on the menu.

The Beach – Seaweed Dip: Make your own favorite dippable concoction, or pick up your favorite from the store and pop it in a pretty bowl so you can take all the credit. If you’re near a Trader Joe’s grocer, they have a great Spinach Artichoke Dip that is inexpensive and delicious.

The Departed – Boston Crème Pie Bites: This is the only menu item that has any significant baking or prep required. You can plan to make this the day before and chill until ready to serve. Check out these super cute mini desserts on House of Yumm and was delighted with how easy they were to put together.

Titanic – My Heart Will Go On Cocktails/I’m the King of the World Celebratory Champagne: Just print your favorite “Jack” photo and paste onto your favorite bottle of bubbly. If he doesn’t win? Save it for your next personal victory, goal achievement or career success – and you’ll feel like the king of the world.

Finally, one of our favorite elements of a good Oscar Party is the ballot for guessing the winners. Each attendee is provided a sheet of the nominees and places their guess on who will win before the show starts. For some categories, people may have a good guess, but things like Best Sound Mixing and Best Animated Short Film are anybody’s game. Each category is worth a different number of points and a winner is recognized at the end of the show. It’s always fun to have a small prize like a movie theater gift card to gift to the winner, however the bragging rights of walking away as the winner are more than rewarding. Download your own party ballot with this year’s nominees and may the best person, (LEO), win!

Guest written by Gordmans theme-party Queen, Beth. 






Fashion Series Shop

Top Shopped: 1/8/16

January 8, 2016

Welcome, 2016! We’re excited about all that the new year has ahead, including helping you save BIG on all the things you need (and WANT) to refresh your home and wardrobe. Only one week in and our top-shopped items indicate that room refreshes are happening, stocking up on basics is essential and getting into the hockey season is key!

  1. A chic, black & white bedding set quickly transforms your room.
  2. Testing out a new designer scent helps overcome the winter doldrums.
  3. Enter the new year with the perfect pair of light-wash denim.
  4. Leather riding boots will never let you down!
  5. Plan for all the travels ahead with a bright suitcase set that will always stand out on the luggage carousel.
  6. If it has to be cold, at least pretty puffer jackets like this one make it easier to bear.
  7. Treat yourself to a new black bag that goes with anything!
  8. Stock up on knee-high socks that are a little cooler than basic white.
  9. Get your Chicago Blackhawks Hockey gear here!
Beauty Décor Family Fashion Series Shop

Under $50 Gift Guide – For Your Mom

December 18, 2015

She’s cleaned your room, dried your tears, motivated you when you needed it, grounded you when you deserved it, offered sage advice (even if you didn’t want it), helped you tweak recipes and plant tomatoes and write amazing cover letters. She’s your beauty icon, your pillar of strength and overall LIFE GURU.

Celebrate the mother figures in your life this season with more than just a cheesy handmade ornament, but something she’ll truly love. Indulge her with these amazing gifts for under $50 that you know she’d never buy for herself!

  1. Pretty new scents she can try out all year
  2. A gorgeous melt-warmer that looks amazing and smells even better
  3. A classic plaid peacoat that will keep her warm all winter
  4. Just in time for the new year, a stunning rose gold watch
  5. An important message she lives by: Family Is Forever wall hanging
  6. Not just any accessory, this modern handbag will update her everyday look
  7. A faux-fur lined cardigan is just luxe enough for her to love
  8. She loves a cozy home, and this plush throw blanket is the perfect finishing touch
  9. Help her capture memories beautifully with this 3-photo frame
Family Fashion Series Uncategorized

Under $30 Gift Guide – For Your Sister

December 1, 2015

You have a secret language. You’ve borrowed, (and probably ruined) items from her closet on multiple occasions. You’ve cried until unattractive red splotches appeared all over your face and she still told you that you were beautiful. You’ve fought over who got to take the car out on Friday night…and who got stuck with Mom’s Chrysler Minivan. You’ve bolstered each other up in life goals, love gone wrong and long lost dreams. She’s your PERSON.

Whether by blood or by bond, the women you consider sisters have a special place in your heart and deserve something extra sweet this holiday season. We’ve rounded up some top gift ideas—all for under $30!— that are sure to make her eyes light up, (and that will be perfect for you to borrow the next time you’re at her place!)

  1. A classic black handbag to match her savvy style: Jessica Simpson Handbag $29.99
  2. An eye defining makeup set along with the cutest printed case : elf makeup set $6.99 & cosmetics case $4.99
  3. The must-have item of the season, a bold blanket scarf: Scarf $16.99
  4. Luxury-in-a-basket spa slippers set to indulge in at home: Spa slipper set $16.99
  5. Cozy boot slippers perfect for holiday sister slumber parties: Slippers $9.99
  6. Her signature scent – or a new one she’s been dying to try: Burberry Brit $29.99
  7. A stylish yet comfortable open cardigan, (that you’ll immediately borrow): Cardigan $24.99
  8. Toast every occasion with cute coffee cups and sassy stemware: Wine glass $7.99, Coffee cup $5.99
  9. A pretty infinity bracelet to show her that your kind of friendship lasts a lifetime: Bracelet $7.99
Series Shop Uncategorized

Top Shopped: 11/14/15

November 13, 2015

Our top shopped items on show that gift shopping is in full swing! Awesome NFL and team gear? Check. Adorable boots for the season? Check, check. The most popular toys around for up to 60% less than department stores? Check, check, ch….you get the point.

1. Little hands will be off to the races with this cool, Hot Wheels Race Case.

2. Snow ready and out for adventure, these fleece-lined boots are just begging for snow.

3. The force is awakening, and we’ve got Star Wars Legos that will have imaginations soaring!

4. Win or lose, this Broncos zip-up hoodie is ready for game day.

5. Your guests will never want to leave when the holidays, and this 9-piece bedroom set, are at your house!

6. Never stop celebrating when you’re wearing this awesome Royals World Series Champions sweatshirt.

7. Elsa and Anna are still enchanting kids with this wondrous Frozen Ice Palace.

8. Paired with leggings, denim or dresses, these suede boots are a wardrobe must!

9. Smiles will be abundant when this Thomas & Friends Turbo Flip Train is unwrapped!

Food Series

Healthy Snacks: Apple Cookie Recipe

October 21, 2015
healthy apple cookie recipe

Fall is a common favorite around the Gordmans office. It means cooler temps, pumpkin carving, hay rides, and best of all, apple picking season! While we love a good slice of apple pie, and a caramel apple is a close second, it’s nice to have a healthier option. We experimented and found a lighter alternative to cookies using our favorite fall fruit that your kids are sure to enjoy.


  • Apples
  • Peanut butter
  • Chocolate chips
  • Pecans
  • Coconut

Core the apple then slice it into thin rings. Spread peanut butter on one side. Top with chocolate chips, pecans, coconut or any of your favorite toppings. Enjoy!

For another healthy recipe check out our raspberry yogurt parfait.

What’s your favorite fall activity?

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