My Little Minx Amanda


Me, all dolled up


Family Fun






Friday, August 29, 2014

Musical Obsession: Free Music from Google Play - Katy Perry's Prism

Happy TGIF!!! It's Friday, Friday!!! And it's a HOLIDAY WEEKEND!!!! WOOT!!! Am I shouting loud enough for you dear readers?  LOL! I've added to my happiness quota today because I've got another free music from Google Play!! I'm sharing this all over and decided to write about it too!

How do I know about this you wonder dear readers?  I'm sure I've shared this with you before, from time to time I will get an email from Google Play telling me that they have a free song, album...yes, album - at no charge! That's $0.00!!! Such is the case with today's free music.  As they said in their email to me:

"It might be the end of summer, but Google Play has you covered for one last roar of a good time. Enjoy a digital copy of PRISM, the latest and greatest album from pop princess Katy Perry, free for a limited time."

Yes, FREE for a LIMITED TIME. So dive in, get the download, go on, you know you want to!  So enjoy today's musical obsession and have a great and safe holiday weekend!

Katy Perry's Prism

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

So You Want to Become a Millionaire?

If you have that dream, I applaud you.  Becoming a Millionaire is not going to be easy of course dear readers. Especially if you don't have the family line or connections that will help take you to the top of that ladder.  But you sure can try to get there!   Let's not focus solely on making the million.  It is important yes, but rather, let us focus on the things we need to do to get there.  

Dharmesh Shah, Entrepreneur shared on Yahoo Small Business the post I am re-sharing to you.  He said becoming a millionaire will be slow, and of course it requires hard work. He listed 8 steps you should take to get you to where you want to be.

Of the 8 steps, I'm going to focus on numbers 7 & 8, the last two. The 7th step is to Track your progress.  This is what you will do when you have found the one thing that he recommends that you choose to become really good at.  Not just good, but better than anyone else!  So, find your goal, make a plan, and study, and/or gain the experience you will need to get really good at doing it.  While you work on getting better and better at that one thing, you should track the progress you are making towards your end-goal.  Pretty much what you will do when you choose to get your life!

The final step, Step 8 you should build routines that will ensure your success. Another great suggestion.  He said that if you want to write a book, you should write a couple of pages per day towards that goal. After all, wishing and thinking about it isn't going to get it done.  This is so true.  This is why I have suggested that you do one thing daily, or weekly towards your end-goal.  

Without even realizing it you will have obtained your dreams, just by being consistently hard at work on them!  Even if becoming a millionaire is not your goal. Whatever your dream ambition is, keep planning, doing and moving ahead.  Don't stop now dear readers, keep it moving.  See the article-link below for full details and the other six steps towards becoming a millionaire!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Operation Motivation: Keeping You Motivated, Birthday Greetings and Random stuff

 Celebrating life

There are times when it is so hard to keep yourself motivated, isn't it dear readers? Do you find this to be true?  I know it's not an easy thing to not only be motivated, but to also stay focus on your goals.  For me the two go hand-in-hand. I believe that if you can stay focus, you can be motivated, or even vice versa!

Our son Adam is celebrating his 20th birthday today! Yes, 20 and yes, I do have kids, who are not so much kids anymore but rather, young adults.  Adam is my second born for those who don't know. He's the only boy as well.  Currently he's attending college and trying to find his way in life.  I'm doing my best to guide him along, much as I have done with his older sister who is graduating college this year!

Time for Eats! Adam & his dad in the kitchen

I try not to be the overbearing, all-in-his-business mom, but I will continue to be in his business (within reason) to help him to stay focus on his goals.  I think everyone needs someone to guide them through life. I've mentioned before how wonderful it would be if we all had mentors.  I never had that opportunity, and so I try to fill that role as mentor for my children.  

I'm hoping that with guidance they will steer themselves into truly being who they are meant to be, grabbing all that life has to offer. Pretty much, taking what you love to do, such as a hobby, or that which gives you the most satisfaction and makes you happy, earn an income to sustain yourself is of the utmost benefit to any individual.  

For many of us, we wait until we have "lived" our lives to mature into the person we want to be.  Somehow as we get older, our minds, bodies and our consciousness yearns for contentment.  The yearning is greater if we are unhappy and not yet where we (think we) should be in our lives.

Making merry at Adam's birthday - Cake time

We celebrated Adam's birthday, A Doctor Who theme without all the frills, with dinner and much merriment at home, what better way to do it?!  OK, don't answer that....I can think of so many other ways...but this one is so much more economical!lol!    

This writing has morphed into one of those really random post dear readers.  Hopefully you received a bit of optimism, even if rather randomly!  Continue to stay motivated, and keep it moving!

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Get Your Life: What's Next?

I do hope you have enjoyed reading with me about things you can do to make changes in your life for the better dear readers. It doesn't matter what your plan is for, if you want changes in your life, you will need to have a plan, aka goals.  A plan that you will put into effect going forward, starting now.  You cannot sit out on the fence any longer.  We have to make things happen for ourselves because no one else will!

With that in mind, have you thought about what is next on your agenda, what do you plan on doing?  

My plan is to continue to read everything that I can about what it is that I want to do for me.  To seek out offers from those who are able to help me to get to where I want to be.  To also attend seminars, webinars, workshops, even if I can't afford to physically be present at any of them.  These days there are a lot of hiccups in life and so I seek out those that offer their services to the masses without costs involved.  

Most likely, if you attend a free seminar/webinar, you are given the opportunity and/or option to continue at a cost you can afford. The fact that there are these types of opportunities to learn from others like this is wonderful. So do jump at and accept them whenever you recieve an offer such as this.

As I continue to be there for those who need me; I plan to be there for me too.  I will no longer put my needs on the back-burner.  That is a decision that you have to make for yourself.  If there is anything that is holding you back from your goals, try to see what you can do to change things around which will enable you to do what you want to do. You won't know until you ask, or try, or communicate with someone in your life.  

I will continue to share with you any opportunities that come my way that you might be interested in.  I'll continue to share new and innovative things on my blogs; and we can learn together! ~smile~.

If you ever have a question about something, need to talk, want to run your ideas off someone and no one is around, I'm here for you. If you don't want to talk to anyone, write it down, your thoughts that is. Sometimes when you write your thoughts and/or ideas down on paper, you can then sort through it, and believe me this helps a lot.  And do you just remember the big guy upstairs?  Yes, God, is there for you too.  I told you already that He and I have that relationship where I can talk to him anytime, anywhere!   You can too.  

Now, go out there, make a difference in your life. Don't sit on the sidebar anymore.  No matter what comes at you, don't let those who do, think that you don't have a say anymore at what happens to you.  You do. This is your life, Go. Get. It!

{If you've read the entire series of my Get Your Life articles, I know they can be really long, especially this last piece. Thank you so much for reading with me!  Please let me know if they have been helpful to you in anyway.  A reminder that I'm not a psychologist, or any kind of analyst or doctor. I'm a human who cares about others, who loves to help, and share thoughts and opinions. I love interacting with like-minded people, and welcome you to my world!}

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Flora & Fauna: The Beauty of the Plant World

I love plants.  Did you know that about me dear readers?  I'm sure I've mentioned that before?  I have a green thumb and I'm so glad I do.  There was a time I didn't though.  Maybe it's because I'm older and I'm finally learning to appreciate life differently?  Whatever it is, plants like me!lol! Yep, we have a love affair going on!

See this photo below? I bumped into it while searching for a word on Google.  I was so fascinated by it, I had to share the beauty of it with you and ask if you have ever seen it before?  I have never seen anything like this! WOW!  I would love to see it in person!

(Photo: © Mark Steinmetz)
Article linked below at end of this write up

This is a California Fungi called Helvella Lacunosa aka Black Elfin Saddle. Even the name is so gorgeous!  But guess what?  It is edible!  Yes you can eat it because it is in the mushroom family!!!! OMG!!! I'm so amazed at this, I'm like a little kid at Christmas!  

I'm going to post the link to the web page I visited so you can read all about it.  Have you ever seen it before?  Have you ever eaten it...would you eat it?  Do share.  

Facts about the Helvella Lacunosa.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Eats: Winter Squash
I received a big ole squash, yes dear readers, I said a "big ole" because it was gi-normous and heavy, a few days ago.  The minute hubby saw it he suggested cooking it the way he does pumpkin, boiling it or cooking in a stew.  I said no way.  We wrestled (read: had a lively discussion) over how to cook it, and which way was best.  Then I did the next best thing. I chopped it in half...ok, he did that; with his strong hands showing me how manly he was!lol! He chopped it in half and then I decided he would cook one half his way, while I do the other half, my way! (how's that for the cure to marital disagreements....if they were all this easy!lol!)

Anyway, I wanted to put my half in the oven, I had a vision of the squash sliced and covered with herbs and seasoning and the taste would be delicious! Our older daughter Jessica, who was visiting with our grandson Jaden, took a sliver of the uncooked squash and mentioned how delicious it was.  I tasted it too and was amazed at its sweetness.  We decided to look on the Internet for recipes. First of all, what type of squash was it? Not a Summer squash..nope, from the description I read, sweet, buttery smooth taste - it was a Winter Squash!   

I was amazed at the variety of squash there were out there in the!  Well, I just don't cook it often.  But I am surely going to seek it out again.  I bumped into the recipe I had in mind, the very same way I wanted to cook it, sliced, with savory herbs and seasonings!  Hubby was mostly concerned that it wouldn't be cooked as soft my way.  I begged to differ!

I began to use the knife to slice the squash but that proved to be pretty hard to do.  I had to exert a bit of force to do it. I know you're thinking "...peel the skin first..."; I didn't want to do that.  I then had the brilliant idea to use  the chopping knife to slice it up, worked like a charm!  

After chopping, I washed and seasoned the squash with: Kosher salt, black pepper, red pepper flakes, lots of garlic, cumin, Italian herbs and parsley.  I put butter in the pan, and added some water.  I then placed it in the oven to bake at 350 degrees for an hour.  It took a while, longer than I thought it would.

Overall the finished product was absolutely delicious!  I loved the taste and the texture which left a nice after taste because of the seasoning. 

What would I do differently?  I would put less water in the pot, and cover it from the start, instead of covering it after it was in the oven for 20 minutes in order to get the nice crispy look on the squash.  It would have sauteed and likely have it's own additional moisture so that I wouldn't need to add more water; at that time I would uncover have the crisp I wanted.  A mental note for the next time! 

What do you think dear readers?  Does it look good to you? Have you ever cooked squash? If so, how do you cook yours?

I found two very informative websites on Squash, one of which had the recipe I had in mind.  Do check them out:

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Must Haves, Rainbow Braid Bands

Do you know what a loom is dear reader?  What about rubber bands...not the regular bands, those colorful little bands that are mini (aka tiny) and made for use on the loom I mentioned. If you have kids in your circle, you probably know what I'm talking about.  We first learned about the mini rubber bands & looms because of Amanda when we saw them everywhere and she had to have them.  She also put them on her wish list for Christmas. Two things I didn't like about the bands I bought in the stores, they were always the same, blue, white, yellow, green....the usual primary color-family.  Secondly, they popped too easily!

A few weeks ago, I had the opportunity to receive a set of bands and a loom from a brand called Rainbow Braid.  We were excited when the first package arrived. I was amazed at the cornucopia of vibrant colors that emerged from the box when I opened it.  Red, green, pink, yellow, blue, even silver!!!  7200 rubber bands!!! Impressive to say the least.  We hadn't received the loom yet, but that didn't stop Amanda from diving in looking at the colors, opening the packets and putting the bands on her finger, like they were jewelry!lol!  

Two days later we received the loom. A set of rubber bands and a hook were also inside the box.  First impression, it looked like a miniature laboratory set.  It could be pulled apart and switched around, unlike the looms we were used to which was a big plus!  

It didn't take Amanda long to start creating.  So far she has designed a bracelet for me, and a bracelet with attached ring for herself.  Her next creation will be a ring for me, and a necklace too!  

We love these bands because of their quality; they don't smell and they do not rub off on your clothing.   We absolutely love the variety in the choice of colors.  They are fun to have!  Do follow this link to see more designs and check out what else Rainbow Braid has to offer:

Note: I was asked to review the Rainbow Braid Bands and share my review in an article on my blog.   No cash was exchanged.  I received the Rainbow Braid Bands and the Rainbow Loom to assist me in writing my review.