Book Review – A Week At The Beach

 

 

One of my favorite pass times is reading.  I’m checking a few books off my reading list.  I just finished A Week at the Beach, by Virginia Jewel. It was a big deviation for me because I’m a true crimes reader.  I loved the book, it’s an easy read and great if you like romances.  

First, the book is about 2 friends, Chrissy and Cami, who are from New York.  Chrissy’s stepfather owns a beach house in the Outer Banks, so they head there for a week’s vacation. The house is occupied when they arrive. Darren, who is related to Chrissy’s step father, and his friend Nick have also decided to use the family beach house. Let the fun begin.   

Next, Chrissy is party girl who seems to have things handed to her on a silver platter. Cami is the complete opposite.  She’s the good girl who doesn’t party much or hook up with guys that she just meets.  She comes from a middle class family and is a school teacher.  In spite of their differences, they remain friends and share life’s ups and downs.  As a result, a week in the Outer Banks brings thrills for both of them.   

Most of all, the author does a good job of keeping the reader engaged with each of the characters.  The story takes several unexpected turns, so bring a bowl of popcorn and your favorite drink. You may not want to put it down. The language is appropriate ,and it doesn’t go into too many details during the sex acts.  I downloaded the e-book from Amazon for free; however,  I would recommend purchasing the paperback.   

In conclusion, the book is a great read in the airport or on the plane. Not traveling, curl up in front of the fireplace or during that much needed break in the bathtub.  I will be checking out more of Virginia Jewel’s e-books.  I’ll keep you posted. 

Ten Reasons I Love Fall

Harpers Ferry, WV


Fall is my favorite time of the year, and here’s my Top 10 reasons that I look forward to this season: 

  1. Beautiful yellow, orange, brown, and red colors – There’s nothing more beautiful than fall foliage on a country drive.
  2. Crisp, fresh air – Sipping a cup of coffee on the deck while inhaling the crisp, fresh air warms my heart.
  3. Visiting the pumpkin patch with the grandchildren – We’ve made visiting the pumpkin patch an annual event. 
  4. It’s boot season –  I love my boots, and I have plenty.
  5. Chili and soups move to the top of the menu – I love simmering a pot of chili or soup on the week-ends during the colder months.
  6. Roaring fires – The fireplace comes to life 
  7.  Mums and pansies are in bloom I love pops of color in the landscape in the fall. It brightens everything.
  8. Halloween costumes I love how excited the kids get deciding who or what they want to for a night of spooky & candy.
  9. Scarves – I love scarves, and have a drawer dedicated to them.
  10. Roasted hot dogs and marshmallows over the fire pit – There’s nothing like roasted hot dogs and smores with the grandchildren in the fall.   

Do you get excited about the fall colors and fresh, crisp air?  What’s your favorite fall activity?  

Blue Ivy Carter Pictures

Blue Ivy Carter, Beyonce, Jay-Z's Daughter: New Photo
 photo courtesy of New York Daily News
Wow, does Blue Ivy Carter look like her dad or what?  I see little resemblance to her mom.  She has Jay-Z’s eyes, mouth and the shape of his face.  The most famous celebrity baby turned 1 in January.  Rumor has it that mom and dad celebrated her birthday with family and friends.  The theme was Princess.  Mother 2 Mother searched for pictures, but we were unable to locate any.  I admire Beyonce & Jay-Z for wanting to keep family moments private.  They’re demonstrating how they raise their daughter is their business and they’re doing a great job.  They’re also proving that it’s important to keep your circle small and keep only trusted people in your circle.  That will eliminate photo leaks from those seeking to make a few dollars off their daughter.
Unfortunately, being a celebrity brings difficult times for those wishing to live a private life when they’re off the stage or screen. I’ve seen negative comments on how much they spent on the birthday party and how ridiculous it is that they gave their daughter an $80,000 diamond encrusted barbie. Mother 2 Mother doesn’t know if that is a rumor or fact, but it must be difficult to have the public determine what should be spent or not spent on your child. Hopefully Mrs. Carter has tough skin, and she will be able to endure such judgement.

 

Celebrity Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving, celebrities, tablescapes

 

Check out these celebrity Thanksgiving tables and turkey.  There’s lots of cooking and baking to be done during the holiday season.  We love sharing ideas for decorating and recipes.  Additionally, Mother 2 Mother also enjoyed viewing the tables of several celebrities.  I thought I would share a few of the pictures tweeted by P Diddy, Conner Cruise, Mariah Carey, Julianne Hough, and Jessica Alba.

Most importantly, I love seeing celebrities decorating and cooking their own holiday meals instead of a chef.  It makes them a little more human to me.  But, when I see dining room tables like this, I know that it’s not an everyday person who lives in a house that would boast a dining room of this magnitude.

 


This is P Diddy’s table.  Although the table is massive, it’s simple, but elegant.  I love the candles.  They make a statement.  The flower arrangements are simple, and they don’t overwhelm the table.  I love the U shape table.  It would be perfect for a buffet style party.

 


Also, P. Diddy shared this picture via Instagram.  He’s holding a beautiful bird.  Not sure if he cooked it or his mother.  She was pictured in several posts.  It’s a beautiful bird regardless of who cooked it.  I would take several slices of that baby.

 

 

Mariah Carey & Nick Cannon’s table.  Absolutely beautiful!  I love the head table between the guess tables.  Together, but separately.  The glass doors provide a stunning view and a change of scenery for the guests.

Celebrity Thanksgiving Tables

This is my favorite table.  It’s Julianne Hough’s.  I love the turkeys and the turkey platter displayed along with the colorful wreaths and the simple stoneware.  You would find this setting in an everyday home. Love it!

 


Here’s Jessica Alba preparing her turkey.  Her kitchen looks like mine after a day of preparing a large feast.  Hope she had someone to help clean up the mess.  I’m usually on my own.

 


Connor Cruise tweeted this picture of their bird.  Looks perfect!  Which, is your favorite table setting?  My vote goes to Julianne Hough.  I love that it is festival, bright and simple.  Thanks to the Daily Mail, Tweeter, and Instagram for the photos.

 

 

Stomp Out Domestic Violence

 

 

 

 

 

Stomp Out Domestic Violence.  That was the theme at the Purple Passion Fashion show that I attended this week-end.  It was wonderful seeing so much diversity among the models, and the community coming together for this worthy cause.  

 October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month.  If it hasn’t affected you personally, I guarantee it has affected someone that you know and love.  Women are the majority of victims; however, men encounter their share of abuse too.  Men are more likely to not report or discuss the violence.  Here are the Domestic Violence Statistics for 2012:
  • Every 9 seconds in the US a woman is assaulted or beaten.
  • Around the world, at least one in every three women has been beaten, coerced into sex or otherwise abused during her lifetime. Most often, the abuser is a member of her own family. 
  • Domestic violence is the leading cause of injury to women—more than car accidents, muggings, and rapes combined.
  •  Studies suggest that up to 10 million children witness some form of domestic violence annually.

  • Nearly 1 in 5 teenage girls who have been in a relationship said a boyfriend threatened violence or self-harm if presented with a breakup.
  • Everyday in the US, more than three women are murdered by their husbands or boyfriends.
  • Ninety-two percent of women surveyed listed reducing domestic violence and sexual assault as their top concern.
  • Domestic violence victims lose nearly 8 million days of paid work per year in the US alone—the equivalent of 32,000 full-time jobs.
  • Based on reports from 10 countries, between 55 percent and 95 percent of women who had been physically abused by their partners had never contacted non-governmental organizations, shelters, or the police for help.
  • The costs of intimate partner violence in the US alone exceed $5.8 billion per year: $4.1 billion are for direct medical and health care services, while productivity losses account for nearly $1.8 billion.
  • Men who as children witnessed their parents’ domestic violence were twice as likely to abuse their own wives than sons of nonviolent parents

Mother 2 Mother is encouraging each of you to Stomp.  You can get involved in so many ways.  You can donate used clothing for women and children to your local Women’s Shelter.  You can donate baked goods or have a food drive to ensure women on the run have food to feed their children.  You can donate a toy this holiday season to ensure the children being housed in a shelter have a great Christmas, and of course monetary donations are always welcome. 

Have you or someone that you know been involved in domestic violence?  Please share how you were able to remove yourself from this abusive situation.  You could help save a life or give someone the courage they need to leave their situation.   

Reindeer Christmas Cookies

I found this adorable Reindeer Christmas Cookies at Super 1 Food and had to share it with you.  My grandson and I are lovers of peanut butter cookies and we will be making these for Santa this year.  I love surfing the internet and finding great ideas that I can share with my grandson and readers.  We discovered a live feed to watch Santa’s reindeer after school, and these cookies are perfect to bake and enjoy while we’re watching them.    

Ingredients:

  • 18-ounce package refrigerated peanut butter or sugar cookie dough
  • 48 small pretzel twists or thin pretzel sticks
  • 48 brown M&M candies
  • 24 red M&M candies

 Directions:

Preheat oven to 350° F.

Place the cookie dough in the freezer for 15 minutes, or until firm.

Cut the dough into 24 slices and place the slices 2 inches apart on large, ungreased cookie sheets.

Pinch in each side to form an hourglass shape. Position 2 pretzels on top of each slice to form antlers. Create eyes with the brown M&M candies, and noses with the red M&M candies.

Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until golden. Remove to a rack to cool completely.

Yield: 2 dozen

Teen Suicide Is Real

This is probably one of the saddest post that I’ve ever written.  My neighbor’s 13 year old daughter committed suicide Thursday night.  They found her around 3:00 am.  I received a visit from another neighbor when I got home from work Friday evening.  She was visiting to let me know of the tragedy, and to figure out how we could come together as a community to help this family.  That’s the type of neighborhood that I live in.  We look out for each other regularly, and help each other out in time of need.
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Wordless Wednesday: Shenandoah Caverns

Black Friday Shopping Tips

shopping tips, black Friday shopping

Black Friday is the biggest shopping day of the year. It’s the day to grab steals and deals, but your planning must start before you hit the stores.   Check out the ads days before and especially Thanksgiving Day. Make a list of the items that you are seeking.  If you get chance, check out the more expensive items prior to Black Friday. You may find that the quality of item is not worth the time that you will spend obtaining them.

Many stores start Black Friday around 8:00 pm Thanksgiving Day. Here are a few Black Friday shopping tips to help make your shopping experience easier:

  • Be patient and wear comfortable shoes.
  • Carry a list of the items that you’re shopping for.
  • Set a budget.
  • Map out a route so you don’t have to back track to stores.
  • Carry the ads with you, you may encounter a discrepancy with the sales clerk.
  • Be an Early Bird shopper, between 5:00 am and 11:00 am, for the best deals.
  • If possible, leave the children at home. You can accomplish more if you don’t have to stop to feed the little ones or leave because they’ve had a major meltdown.
  • Shop on-line in the comfort of your home. On-line retailers offer Black Friday deals too.
  • Get a gift receipt for any holiday purchases for exchanges or refunds.

Remember the true meaning of the holidays, and don’t overextend your purchasing power. Just because an item is on sale doesn’t men that it’s a bargain.

 

I Mind Very Much If You Smoke

Image-Smoking

 

Should smoking be banned in private vehicles? If the Marco Firebaugh Memorial Children’s Health and Safety Act of 2006 is passed, drivers in California will be fined if they are caught smoking with a child under the age of six in their vehicle. This applies to moving or parked vehicles. Vehicles on private property will not be an exception. If you pull into your driveway and decide that you want to light up before you enter your home, don’t have a child under the age of six in your vehicle. I don’t know if you will be forced to the ground and asked to place your hands behind your back so they can slap handcuffs on you or not (now there’s a picture for you), but the driver will be warned the first time and fined a $100.00 thereafter.


Lets take a look at this bill: health professionals who testified on behalf of the bill stated that recent studies show that secondhand smoke contributes to high rates of bronchitis, pneumonia and asthma in children. I personally believe this is true and I’m all for protecting our young, but why doesn’t this bill apply to children over the age of six? How can they leave out children of any age? Are they saying that children over the age of six aren’t harmed by second hand smoke because they can sit in the front seat of the vehicle or they don’t have to be in car seats? What about teens? I’m not understanding the logic.

Furthermore, are they going to pull police patrols from crime ridden neighborhoods to monitor private vehicle owners who smoke and their children? Do you think they are trying to shift the focus away from their smog infested cities to smokers because they can’t clean up their own state? You would think that one of the most smog infested states in the country would be more concerned about the rapists, murders, robbers, molesters, and gangsters rather than someone’s personal vehicle. If they’re not going to concern themselve with the criminals, you would think they would be trying to elininate the smog that’s affecting all of their citizens instead of focusing on smokers and their children. The obviously don’t see that the smog is contributing to these ills as well! What’s next, a bill that allows police officers to peep through the windows of private homes to detect parents smoking around children under the age of six?

Back to the controversial cigarette. If this product is so harmful, why is it legal? Could it be the almighty dollar? Industries make billions of dollars on the sell of tobacco annually. If these products are legal, how can one be fined for using them? Why don’t they fine the tobacco companies for perpetrating an addiction? To me selling cigarettes and fining a person for smoking them makes as much sense as alcohol being sold to an alcoholic, but locking up the alcoholic after he kills someone, beats the crap out of wife or kids, gets fired from their job because he or she is dysfunctional from the effects and can no longer provide for his/her family, and than costing society thousands of dollars for rehabilitation.

Lets look at this from another perspective, are they questioning a parent’s decison making skills? If a parent won’t protect their child from second hand smoke, they will. If they are so righteous and adamant about protecting children, why aren’t they protecting “all” children. I think the citizens/parents in this country should question these lawmaker’s decision making skills. What’s your thoughts?