Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Beneath Copper Falls By Colleen Coble #Review


Beneath Copper Falls
By Colleen Coble

USA TODAY bestselling author Colleen Coble returns to her beloved Rock Harbor—but both danger and romance hide in this idyllic small town.

Dana Newell has just moved to Rock Harbor to take a job as a sheriff's dispatcher and is settling in next door to Bree and Kade Matthews. The abusive relationship she left behind seems a distant memory in this perfect place.

Her first day on the job, Dana receives a call from her friend Allyson who screams "He's going to kill me too" before the phone goes dead. Dana immediately dispatches a deputy, but it's too late. Allyson's death is ruled an accident, but Dana just doesn't believe it. She knows Allyson—an investigative reporter—was researching a new story. Did someone want to keep her quiet?

Dana continues to look into the accident with the help of Bree and also Allyson's cousin Boone. Romance quickly blooms between Dana and Boone but the game is much more complex than either of them imagined. When Dana's ex-fiance locates her, she's caught in the middle. It’s a game of cat and mouse as she and Boone fight to catch one killer while evading another.

I received a complimentary copy.

Cassandra's Review-  A mixed bag in this book, and I would totally recommend reading this series in order, but if you acquired this without knowing, then as a standalone you will probably still really enjoy it because as a story it does hold its own.  The town settings and characters bring this book to a level that most readers would enjoy a lot.  It is not for younger children because of the storyline, but a great read for older ages.   I think the author hit the mark on another great book.

As Southern As It Gets By H. Jackson Brown #Review

As Southern As It Gets
1,071 Reasons to Never Leave the South
By H. Jackson Brown

Life Is Sweet in the South

Full of small towns and sparkling cities, this welcoming area invites all who visit to put your feet up, have a glass of ice tea in a mason jar and reminisce on some of the most wonderful things in the South. Written by true Southern gentleman H. Jackson Brown Jr., As Southern As It Gets is a charming book of lists—a celebration of all things Southern that will charm and delight anyone who was raised south of the Mason-Dixon or who wish they lived there.

Recall the tastes, sounds, and beauty of Southern treasures such as:

Juicy Georgia peaches in July

Glorious changing leaves on the Natchez Trace

A steaming cup of gumbo from New Orleans

The smooth, soulful voice of Patsy Cline

From Music Row in Nashville, to Daytona Beach in Florida, and Charleston to New Orleans, As Southern As It Gets will remind you of why we Southerners do love our home.

I received a complimentary copy.

Cassandra's Review- Honestly this book is a list of words and have no rhyme or reason other then alphabetically ordered and relate to the south.  I thought it was going to be filled with stories, or at least some explanation of things, but it is like reading plain words in a list with a few quotes thrown in.  Honestly you can still enjoy most of the people and items while you are living in the North so it is kind of besides the point and more of a pride thing then a nostalgic moment.

Foundations of Drawing by Al Gury #review

From a leading art instructor at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts in Philadelphia, a complete survey of drawing as an art form covering its history, materials, and key techniques, alongside step-by-step demonstrations.

Foundations of Drawing is a comprehensive and authoritative overview of the history, aesthetics, methods, and materials of the drawing medium. Throughout, clearly defined demonstrations provide easy access to the practice of drawing as well as the history and development of core drawing techniques. Richly illustrated, the book contains reproductions of the finest master drawings from the fifteenth century to the present. Unlike other drawing instruction books that focus on step-by-step lessons exclusively, Foundations of Drawing provides readers with the context and background to help understand just why these materials and methods are so vital for successful drawing.

I received a complimentary copy.

Cassandra's Review- If you are an adult and love nudes, this is going to be a book of choice.  Yes, it includes great artful knowledge but the photos chosen are super nudes.  I point this out as I did not realize it and felt weird having my children sit around and learn and then all of a sudden shutting the book fast.  It is a super warning that unless your with adults in a professional setting, this is not really going to be shareable.   I am sorry about the cover as well.  I was uncomfortable sharing it for you today.    I felt this was more like a book of artnography .

FAIR FOODS Cookbook By George Geary #Review

FAIR FOODS: The Most Popular and Offbeat Recipes from America’s
State and County Fairs
By George Geary

The summer season is a time for ice cream, trips to the beach, and . . . state and county fairs! The food selection at state and county fairs is now more diverse and delicious than ever before, ranging from timeless classics like apple pie and corn dogs to new inventions like spicy peanut butter and jelly cheeseburgers and fried Coca-Cola®!

Award-winning chef, best-selling author, and renowned educator George Geary celebrates the weird and wonderful foods sold at state and county fairs with his new book, Fair Foods: The Most Popular and Offbeat Recipes from America’s State and County Fairs (Santa Monica Press/August 2017). This illustrated cookbook features 120 recipes of some of the most interesting and unusual foods served at fairs across the USA.

“For 28 seasons, I was involved in the largest county fair in the country: the Los Angeles County Fair,” says Geary. “During that time, I watched as the focus of the fair moved from blue ribbons and homemade pie bake-offs to the rows and rows of vendors that now hawk crazy food combinations. Around 1980, ‘classic’ fair food began to evolve from cotton candy and snow cones to bacon-wrapped doughnuts fried in pork belly fat. Not all the food sold at the fair is fried, but the motto of today’s county fair might as well be ‘Just Fry It!’”

Fair Foods highlights not only the new culinary “classics” at state and county fairs, but also longstanding favorites. Some of the recipes in the book include:
Maple and Bacon Doughnuts
The World’s Gooiest Cinnamon Rolls with Cream Cheese Frosting
Caramel Kettle Corn
Fried Sweet Potato Sticks
Ten-Pound Cheese Buns
Triple Cheeseburger Doughnuts
Cheesecake on a Stick
Chocolate-Encased Bacon
Deep-Fried Twinkies®
Fried Coca-Cola®
Deep-Fried Oreos®
Bacon-Wrapped Tater Tots with Dill Dipping Sauce
Firehouse Chili with Peppers
Grilled Pork Chops on a Stick
Spicy Peanut Butter and Jelly Cheeseburgers
Egg Cream
Funnel Cake with Berries
Old-Fashioned Salted Pretzels

Each page of Fair Foods is illustrated with photographs of America’s most beloved fair foods, as well as vintage and contemporary images of rides, attractions, and nostalgic ephemera from the fair.

Fair Foods captures the joy and spirit of America’s greatest county fairs. You don’t have to wait for fair season to make these wacky and wonderful foods—now you can enjoy them all year long!

About the Author
George Geary
George Geary is an award-winning chef, best-selling author, and renowned educator. A former pastry chef for the Walt Disney Company, George is a Certified Culinary Professional, and was recently chosen as the Culinary Educator of the Year by the International Association of Culinary Professionals. He is perhaps best known for creating all the cheesecakes for The Golden Girls and other top-rated television programs.

George has worked as a critic and/or judge for ABC’s The Taste with Anthony Bourdain, The American Baking Competition with Jeff Foxworthy, Hell's Kitchen, Supermarket Superstar, and many other popular television shows. He also teaches cooking classes aboard Holland America Lines.

For over thirty years, Geary has been a culinary contest judge for such major food manufacturers as Canola Producers, Veg-All, Hormel Foods, the Hershey Company, Knott’s Berry Farm Foods, Ghirardelli Chocolate, Fleischmann’s Yeast, the San Diego Union Tribune, ABC News, and many more. From 1982 to 2010, George was the culinary coordinator of the Los Angeles County Fair.

George is the author of L.A.’s Legendary Restaurants, as well as nine cookbooks including The Cheesecake Bible, The Complete Baking Cookbook, and 125 Best Cheesecake Recipes. He is a frequent guest on national and local television and lives in Los Angeles.

I received a complimentary copy.

Cassandra's Review-   I  LOVE this book, it is filled with the best recipes for fair goodness and treats all over the USA.   You know they are not going to be super healthy, but most fair food is not.  I was super excited to try out most of the recipes and they are super easy to understand.  If you have grown up around fair foods and then miss them terribly as an adult, this book is both nostalgic and yum in one! I would love to get my hands on every book by this author!

Recipe(s) reprinted from FAIR FOODS: The Most Popular and Offbeat Recipes from America’s State and County Fairs
by George Geary
Santa Monica Press/August 2017

The hot, crunchy pucker of these fried pickles is like no other flavor you can imagine. Pair with ketchup or mustard.

Serves 4

24 oz. dill pickles, sliced into ¼-inch rounds
1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
2 tsp. seasoned salt
2 tsp. garlic powder
½ tsp. freshly ground black pepper
1 ½ tbsp. hot sauce
¾ cup water
canola oil

Special Supplies:
Candy/deep fry thermometer
Paper towels

Drain dill slices on paper towels. Refrigerate until ready to use.
In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, seasoned salt, garlic powder, and black pepper. Add hot sauce and water to make a runny paste.
In a stockpot, heat 1 ½ inches of canola oil over medium heat to 375°F.
Dip pickle rounds into the batter to coat all sides. If the batter is runny and doesn’t stick to the pickle, add additional flour. If it is too thick, add hot water.
Using a slotted spoon, lower the battered pickles into the hot oil and fry until golden brown, about 30 seconds, turning over halfway through.
Remove from heat and drain on paper towels.

Spicy Peanut Butter and Jelly Cheeseburgers
One of the most unusual combinations to emerge from county fairs.

Makes 4 burgers

1 1/3 lbs. lean ground beef
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper
¼ cup creamy peanut butter
4 slices Swiss cheese
¼ cup grape jelly
1 jalapeƱo, sliced thin
4 hamburger buns, toasted

Special Supplies:
Grill pan or barbecue

Gently shape ground beef into four 1/3-pound round patties. Don’t handle the beef too much. Press a dimple into the center of each patty. Season well with kosher salt and pepper.
Grill burgers over medium-high heat for about 4 to 5 minutes per side for medium burgers. About a minute before the burgers are

Babies at the Barre #Review


What is Babies at the Barre™?

Babies at the Barre™ is a babywearing “Mommy and me” style exercise class designed for new moms and their babies. This mix of basic ballet and pilates exercises focus on rebuilding strength in the abdominals and pelvic floor as well as increasing flexibility, and toning arms, core, calves, and buns all while bonding with baby. No prior dance or pilates experience is required to participate in class. ​
I received complimentary membership.

They have both online or actual go to classes.

Cassandra's Review- I was invited to a facebook group as part of the program, which was nice and welcomed, but the group really is not active and I felt more like it is just so new it needs a little more time and traction.   The whole idea of doing these great exercises with your baby on you is wonderful, though I felt a little nervous watching these moms with the newborn age children just kind of bobbing in  a bundle while they did the routines.  Perhaps a certain age group for the babies would be nice.  

On the other end of the spectrum there was a video with older children just going crazy in the background and it threw me off focus and I started to get really distracted and then not motivated.   I know it is hard for a new mom to lose weight and make friends when the baby is so young and I think the whole idea is fabulous, however the way that it is just kind of thrown together randomly and then again comfort levels of a person will stand out.  

In the end I watched the videos more so hoping the babies did not get hurt, more so than caring about the whole aspect as it was very to me personally off putting.   

Beetology Beverage #Feature

I received complimentary product.

Follow Beetology on FB https://www.facebook.com/mybeetology/

Kayco is proud to introduce Beetology, a new line of craft beverages made from one of nature’s untapped nutritional powerhouses, beets. These sweet, organic, cold-pressed juices are a delicious choice for today’s health-minded consumer, and they’re leading the pack of good-for-you products that offer all the ‘clean’ attributes shoppers are demanding today.

Image result for beetology

According to Charles Herzog, Chief Beetologist and VP of New Business Development at Kayco, “The movement toward simple, easy-to-understand, healthy ingredients is now in the mainstream. Beetology beverages contain no more than five ingredients – nothing but organic, natural, cold-pressed juice – perfectly blended for a crisp and unique flavor in every sip. The pure farm-to-table pedigree means you can taste the difference.”
Image result for beetology
All five varieties are 100% non-GMO, U.S.D.A. Certified Organic, and Certified Fair Trade. The 100% juice blends contain no preservatives, additives, artificial colors, or flavors. They are also non-soy, non-dairy, and certified kosher, making them perfect for anyone, any time.

Best of all is the way beets harmonize with other natural juices. Every perfectly-crafted Beetology blend packs a crisp, delicious punch that’s refreshing, nuanced, and not too sweet. Varieties include Beet + Lemon + Ginger, Beet + Veggie, Beet + Tropical Fruit, Beet + Berry, and Beet + Cherry.

The myriad benefits of beets are well-documented. Dense in nutrients and high in antioxidants, they help boost energy, aid in weight loss, support cleansing and detoxing, and have anti-inflammatory properties. They’re also known to improve blood flow and help lower blood pressure.

Each single serve bottle retails for about $3.99 and can be found in the refrigerated product section.