Retiring Pampered Chef Products (Fall/Winter 2012)

As my post from six months ago is still one of my most viewed posts, I’m going to assume that you really want this information. As long as readers are still looking for it, I’ll keep posting it. šŸ™‚ I am a Pampered Chef consultant but I am not allowed to a link to my website here. You can contact me for the website or you can join my private Facebook group. I post specials, tips, and recipes. (And I can post the link to my site there.)

The following Pampered Chef products will be available through Feb 28, 2013 (while supplies last). Continue reading

Book Blast & Giveaway: Prize-Winning Pacific Stories by Kiana Davenport


Prize-Winning Pacific StoriesĀ 

(Special Edition Boxed Set Vol. I-III)

House Of Skin, Cannibal Nights, Opium Dreams
Bestselling author, Kiana Davenport (The Spy Lover, Shark Dialogues) is pleased to offer a Special Edition Boxed Set, featuring the first three volumes of her Prize-Winning Pacific stories, many of which have appeared in the O.Henry Awards, the Pushcart Prizes, and The Best American Short Stories. Set across the Pacific, in islands where the author has traveled and lived, the stories comprise tales of love, lust, racism, family, murder, rape, the search for identity, and the universal search for human dignity.

Volume l, HOUSE OF SKIN, comprises stories set in Hawaii, Papua New Guinea, Nauru, Fiji, Vanuatu.

Volume ll, CANNIBAL NIGHTS, comprises stories set in Hawaii, Tonga, Easter island, Marquesas Islands, Tahiti, Australia.

Volume lll, OPIUM DREAMS, comprises stories set in Western Samoa, Aotearoa, New Zealand, Honolulu, Georgia, and the title story, a novella set in Kohala, Hawaii. Continue reading

Heart to Heart Challenge: Everyone Deserves a “Happy Valentine’s Day”

Heart2We all know how depressing Valentine’s Day can be if you don’t have someone to spend the day with or how discouraging it is when it seems that everyone you know is getting flowers, candy, or a special dinner (even if it’s just a homemade dinner). As much as we all complain and rant about a manufactured holiday, it can be very hard for many people.

A Google search for “Valentine’s Day depression” yields over 5 million results. That’s a lot of sadness over one day.Capture

So this year, I challenge you to pick at least one friend or family member and do something to make their day special. Ā It doesn’t have to take a lot of time or even cost any money. Ā Just let them know something that you like or love about them. Don’t just say, “Happy Valentine’s Day!” (Because if it isn’t, that will make them feel worse.) Take a minute to let them know they’re important. Continue reading

Guest Post and Giveaway: How to Avoid the Rejection Blues by Julian Rosado-Machain


How to Avoid the Rejection Blues

by Julian Rosado-Machain

Ah, the rejection blues! When all the hope built up during those long, interminable weeks that pass between sending a query letter or a manuscript and receiving a response is annihilated by the simple “Thank you, but….”

I blame the “but.” God, how I learned to hate the “but…”.

“Thank you, “at least, shows a modicum of sympathy, but “but…”? I am sure that everything after the “but…” is optional. The “but…” seals the deal, what you wrote isn’t good enough, at least to the “Thank you,” people. They are grateful that you thought about them, they might or might not have read what you sent, discussed it, placed it on the table as a probable project, fought for it to be accepted by the uber-bossess of the company, it may have moved their hearts, changed their lives and they keep a copy close to the pillows…

“but…” Continue reading

Kid Quotes (2/4)

Sometimes Bennett seems older than his years, such as when he dropped something in the car and told me, “I seem to have lost it.” Or when he told me, “Please don’t respond to me.” What? Turns out that one was supposed to be “interrupt”, which we figured out when he kept saying, “Don’t inter-respond me.” Because apparently he finds being “inter-responded” “insulating”. You know, when someone says something mean about you: insulating.

I make these notes in my email or on my phone whenever one of the boys does or says something so I don’t forget. Unfortunately, I don’t always remember details, like with this one. I don’t remember what he was talking about, but the boy’s vocabulary is so cute. Maybe we were at the grocery store meat counter and rang the bell. I’m not sure. But he informed us, “We have to ring it every moment.”

When Bennett was born, we called him Peanut. When he got a little bigger, Jeffrey decided he should be Walnut because peanuts are too little. Bennett asked him the other day, “What kind of nut will I be when I’m ten?” (Possibly a famous one if he keeps this up.) Continue reading

Recipe: Chicken Taco Soup

Chicken Taco Soup Recipe

I love this because it’s super-easy to make and will give you left-overs for a healthy lunch the next day or two. If you need to feed a crowd, I’ve included a note for that below the recipe. This is a not from-scratch recipe – it’s more a “semi-homemade” soup – but it can easily be adapted to be completely from scratch if you prefer. You can serve it with cornbread (jalapenoĀ cornbread if you’re up for it), crackers, or corn chips. Continue reading