Monday, November 30, 2015


Thanks to the peeps over at Feisty, Frugal & Fabulous for this super tasty treat, and it's very simple to prepare.  As you can probably tell by now, I'm hooked on chocolate this month, and probably all through December, too! *heh* 
Some people may call this a milkshake, and others consider it a spin on hot chocolate. Whatever title you choose, this recipe is sure to be a hit with friends and family.

Mocha Mistletoe Drink Recipe 
  • ½ oz Bailey's Irish Cream Liqueur
  • ½ oz Kahlua (basically I do a half shot glass of each...more if you're feeling extra festive!)
  • ½ cup coffee
  • ½ cup hot chocolate (if you don't have hot chocolate, a teaspoon of chocolate sauce works too!)
  1. Serve with whipped topping - you can make it even more festive and fab with crushed candy canes as a glass rim, colored sugar, candy cane sprinkles on top, chocolate drizzle, etc.  The sky's the limit!

In the blogging world, we're celebrating with many holiday themes, book tours, the sharing of recipes, or discussing our plans.  It's fun to read and write about and we love it.

Sadly, those who are homeless or in frightening domestic violence situations are struggling and afraid.  Many wonder where the next meal will come from, or what violent act they'll be forced to endure.

If you can, please donate to a homeless/domestic violence shelter, or your local church to help someone in need. Also a hug of encouragement may be what someone needs to get through the day.

Sunday, November 29, 2015


Before we get started, let me give a super shout out to my girl Kim of, who lovingly does her weekly meme every Sunday about news, reviews, books and other great info.  Hey Kim!

This recipe is super simple, great for parties and a great treat for the kids.  Once again, I give mad props to Taste of Home -  5 Ingredient Cookbook.  This book is fantastic!

1 1/2 Cups White Baking Chips
1 Package Pretzel Rods
Colored Candy Stars or Sprinkles
Colored Sugar or Edible Glitter

In a microwave, melt chips and stir into smooth.  Dip each pretzel rod halfway into the melted chips, allowing the excess to drop off.  Sprinkle with candy stars or sprinkles and the colored sugar.  Place on waxed paper, letting stand until dry. Store in an airtight container.  Use Dark or other flavored chocolate if you prefer. Enjoy!

If you enjoy reading as much as I do, one would think I'd get gift cards to Barnes and Noble or Amazon, but it NEVER happens! (lol)  However, even if you're not a hard booknerd like me and some of my fellow bloggers, there are a gifts that would work well under the tree.

1.  THE WINE BIBLE: In a 5 year period James Beard Award winner Karen MacNeil tasted over 10,000 wines to provide her recommendations for some of the best around the world.  It will require some time on your part, however, because it's over 1000 pages!  "PM"

2.  HOME: Do you love looking at pictures of opulent homes AND Ellen?  Be sure to check out this design book with pics and info about places she has lived in over the years.  Very cool!

3.  PLACES TO GO, PEOPLE TO SEE by Kate Spade is the ultimate Travel book for your coffee table.

4.  Can you imagine visiting a city and having just 36 HOURS...?  Yep, you can visit places all over the world right from your living room by reading this New York Times bestseller.

If your friends and family who are more into clothes, and would get excited about unique clothing, visit  Some things are a little pricey, but are definitely worth it.

Think outside of the box by visiting for cool and edgy style.

If you remember from one of my other posts, I used to do the Black Friday shopping deal all the time, but I stopped for a few years once I moved.  Well, I got back into the groove on Thanksgiving because I sort of missed the madness.  Yes, call me a nut, I know - but work with me, ok? (lol)  Everyone started out in a really good mood, giving me  plenty of people to chat and laugh with.  Uh...well, those feelings of cheer didn't last for long once the 32 Inch Roku Flat Screen ran out, AFTER customers were guaranteed receipt by having a red wrist band.  Yikes!  There was cursing and a near fight while I walked around.  I'm not surprised they ran out of televisions because many had 3 and 4 in 2-3 carts.

For those who may be worried, I was the 2nd person in line, and despite walking around looking for things that everyone wasn't fighting for, I was outta there in one piece in less than 33 minutes.  Not bad, huh?

This time of year, everyone is eating, everywhere, and at some point during the holiday, you'll be invited to someone's home.  There can be a smorgasbord available for your culinary delight, but you don't eat ANY of it! Now what?  Do you tell your host when she notices you slinking around hungry, or do you sneak out early and head for the nearest fast food joint., and hope no one notices?  Inquiring minds are eager to know.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015


This has nothing to do with anything related to Thanksgiving, or food, or family (lol), but dang it, I just have to throw it out there.

What's up with the infomercials that promise "More Sex", "Better Sex", "Better Orgasms", blah, blah, blah. 

Back in the day, people were selling non-stick pans, Flowbees, bathroom cleaners, picker uppers. and flat hoses.These are the same items we're told can only be purchased on television, but I declare that every time I'm in Wal-Mart, they're staring me in the face - AND they're cheaper!

I'm a late night television watcher, and while flipping through and reading, these new age commercials are messing with my mind, guys!  They're everywhere!

Am I alone in my rant?  My fear is that somehow, someway, these items made to improve our sex lives will end up on the aisle in supermarkets or drugstores nationwide at a discounted price, begging to be purchased.

Even worse, some products that we NEVER see all year, mysteriously pop up like the Ove Glove and the Chia Pet.  What the heck?! (lol)

Sunday, November 22, 2015


Before we get started, let me give a super shout out to my girl Kim of, who lovingly does her weekly meme every Sunday about news, reviews, books and other great info.  Hey Kim!

Now on to our recipe.  In some areas it may be getting a little colder, but that sure doesn't mean we don't crave a little ice cream every once in a while.  This is the perfect delectable treat for a holiday party, and it's very simple to make.  It looks so delicious that everyone will think you spent hours in the kitchen, or a lot of money. Once again, this is from one of my faves - Five Ingredient Cookbook from Taste of Home.


  • 3-3/4 cups crushed cream-filled chocolate sandwich cookies 
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 1 jar (16 ounces) hot fudge ice cream topping, warmed
  • 1/2 gallon coffee, chocolate chip, or cookie dough ice cream, softened, 
  • 1 carton (8 ounces) frozen whipped topping, thawed
  • Chocolate curls or sprinkles, optional


  1. Combine cookie crumbs and butter; press onto the bottom and 1 in. up the sides of a 13x9-in. dish. Freeze 1 hour or until firm.
  2. Spread hot fudge topping evenly over crust; freeze 30 minutes.
  3. Layer with ice cream and whipped topping. Cover and freeze 8 hours or overnight. Garnish with chocolate curls or sprinkles if desired. Makes 15 servings,or less if you like BIG portions (lol).

If you've been reading my blog, you already know that I have HUGE girl crush on Martha Stewart because she can do anything!  Recently I was thrilled to see her on Chopped Junior and she was super serious about judging the work of those kids. Anywho, next month is the 25th anniversary of her magazine Living which is filled with lots of blingy decorations and delectable treats.  If you're crafty and want to try some new designs, this is the perfect magazine.  Flower and Gem Ornaments, Floral Fantasy Trees, and Sequined Balls are just a few of the DIY projects mentioned.  Then she shares some cool knowledge on candles that is really interesting.  Congrats to Martha and her team on her Silver Anniversary.

By the way - if you want to visit New York and tour Martha's offices, enter for your chance to win at  The prizes include a trip for 2 to New York, a $2,000 shopping spree, special cookbooks and hanging out at some of Martha's favorite places.

Let's face it - unless you get a game from a yard sale or thrift store, it's gonna cost you a little moola.  Prices for Monopoly and my fave Taboo range from $11.99 up to about $22.  Scrabble, however is a different animal and can cost as little as $17.99 all the way up to 1, 155!  I play all three, (I have yet to beat my husband in Scrabble who is a true master of the game, and no one I know has either-lol) and thank goodness I picked them up for next to nothing at yard sales from people who were tired of playing or just wanted to get rid of them.

This guy wrote a really funny post on his blog called  "9 Undeniable Reasons Board Games are Awful" back in 2014.  I can't say I agree with all of his reasoning, because I like board games, but he had me totally laughing out loud with his thoughts, and I followed him of course. I do agree that sometimes it's awful dag hard to find the right amount of people, or in fact ANY people to play on occasion. (lol) Check him out for yourself at  

But it made me wonder, are people still playing board games these days?  Has electronics and Social Media taken over?

Off to cook breakfast, head to church and back to watch Christmas movies on the Hallmark Channel.  Yes, most I've seen before, but I can't help myself. Of course, they'll be some reading going on, too!  Ridley Person's The Risk Agent is keeping me on the edge of my seat with all the suspense and action.  How's your day?

Friday, November 20, 2015


Nope, haven't tried this drink yet, but the thought of maple syrup in a drink sounded pretty cool. Even better, it's super simple to make for when you're reading a good book, or to show off for friends. Here it is:

In an ice-filled shaker, mix 1/4 cup Vanilla Vodka, 3 Tbs. Pure Maple Syrup, 2 Tbs Dark Rum and 1/2 Tsp Rum Extract.  Shake it up well for your aerobic activity, then strain into 2 glasses. Add a stick of cinnamon or a piece of yummy bacon if you like. Done! 

Did you know that 12 people have won all four major awards since 1950? Audrey Hepburn, Whoopi Goldberg, Helen Hayes and Mel Brooks are included in this esteemed list of entertainers who have won an Oscar, an Emmy, a Tony AND a Grammy.  

Most of us use baking soda to keep the odors out of the fridge, but did you know that we can also get rid of those yucky smells with a lemon?  Place lemon juice on a cotton ball, then leave it in the refrigerator for about 2-3 hours.  When you go back later, that smell will be all gone!

I have to be honest.  The first time I heard about this line, I thought it was a ruse, but it actually does exist.  Every year in November and December anyone can call the Turkey Talk-line for cooking assistance.  I don't know how they do it, but their team is able to figure out just about any scenario you can come up with.  I'm sure 30+ years of experience has prepared them for anything. (lol) 1-800-BUTTERBALL (1-800-288-8372) 

Years ago, I remember getting up super early to head to K-Mart to purchase gold hoop earrings, and I was pretty much always first in line. It was a really fun activity allowing me to chat with others, or to people watch once I made my purchase. I did this for 3 years before moving to another state. things have changed.  Black Friday Deals were so hard to find out about in advance that you had to know someone to get an early scoop. Now we can get bargains on Thanksgiving, and on-line that can be better than on Black Friday. We also find out about all those deals much, much earlier.  But what about you?  Any plans to head out with the masses, or will you let your fingers do the walking?

Tuesday, November 17, 2015


As much as I read, research, and watch television, I never in a million years would have thought something like this could have happened.  In fact, I'm still sort of reeling from the shock and unmitigated gall of this scam!

Recently, I've been apartment/house-hunting, with a concentrated focus in Wake County, NC.  I've been checking out the newspaper, driving around certain areas, and of course, I've perused Craigslist.

I found what I thought was the perfect home in an affordable price range, and was super excited.  Suddenly, a red flag popped up in my head, screaming "Warning, Warning!"  The "owner" told me to ignore the "For Sale" sign found at the property and after he received payment, the keys and necessary paperwork would be sent to me via courier because he was out of town.  Huh?

This is the actual home listed on Craigslist as a Rental, but is actually For Sale!
I did a search and found out that this home was in fact for sale, and had never been on the market to be rented!  When I asked the owner for inside pictures, no response. When I asked to do a walk-through, no response. The listing provided on Craigslist also did not match what was listed on-line. Finally, I told the scammers that before I would provide payment, my friend, an attorney, would need to walk through the property to take a quick peek just to ensure I was moving into a safe neighborhood.  A woman responded, (I had previously been speaking with a man) asked me what I needed, even though all the e-mails were concise and detailed.  I don't have to tell you that I never heard back from these people, and I wonder why? (lol)

House-hunters beware!  Of course, I'll be passing this info on to the necessary people, but I'm sure it will amount to nothing. These con artists are long gone. The good news is of course, that

Inside pic listed on-line

I just wasted a little of my valuable time, and no money.  By the way, the posting has been mysteriously deleted-lol. Meanwhile, I'm still searching for that perfect location. *heh*. Any ideas?
This is the Let's Make A Deal Zonk I would have received! (lol)

Thursday, November 12, 2015



  • 3/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted
  • 2 cups confectioners' sugar
  • 1/2 cup chunky peanut butter
  • 1 cup (6 ounces) semisweet chocolate chips


  1. In a bowl, combine cracker crumbs and butter. Stir in sugar and peanut butter. Press into a greased 8-in.-square pan.
  2. In a microwave or double boiler, melt the chocolate chips and stir until smooth. Spread over peanut butter layer. Chill 30 minutes; cut into squares. Chill until firm, about 30 minutes longer. Store in the refrigerator. Makes: about 2 dozen.

I found this recipe in the Taste of Home - 5 Ingredient Cookbook, but it's actually been around since 1998 as one of those treats that are quick to make and yummy to eat.

There are only 2 steps to this entire recipe!  Yay!!!  This is so simple that it's a super way to get kids in the kitchen.

Friendly reminder to partake of a gourmet breakfast!
Yesterday, I had the opportunity to stay at the B & B Garden Inn in Apex, NC and if I told you I was pampered, it would be an understatement.  Fishing, eating dinner in front of the lake with NO bugs, enjoying a good book in an elegant room AND a phenomenal home-cooked breakfast with Linda Daniels and her husband, was the height of my Veterans' Day.  Their kindness and words of wisdom certainly couldn't be matched anywhere else.  If you're ever in the NC area and need a place to stay that is homey and peaceful, stop by to visit.
1041 Kelly Rd, Apex, NC 27523
Great view of outside or to watch television.

See my name in red on the wall!?!

Cool picture on the wall in the room.

The other day, I visited a blog of a really neat lady from , and she reminded me that we need to have some semblance of order in all we do.  Sadly, I'm not nearly as organized as I should be! (lol) Lissa also mentioned that it seems more people are using Instagram and other forms of Social Media instead of blogging.  I'm not on Instagram, but I've heard that you put in pictures and that's pretty much it. Is there any interaction going on?  What are your thoughts regarding blogging in the future?  Great topic, Lissa!

Meanwhile, I have 6 e-mail accounts and one has over 106, 000 e-mails that I need to purge. It's so bad, that even Google is sending me reminders. (lol)  

Tuesday, November 10, 2015


Let me first give some mad LOVE and HUGS to B & B Country Garden Inn , located in Apex, NC for showing their appreciation for vets by offering a FREE night's stay at their amazing Bed and Breakfast! Kudos to you Beth McKinney!

Many places list veterans' discounts, but I always use (thanks!) for the latest and greatest on deals, and other military benefits throughout the year.

One of the biggies that I'm taking advantage of first thing in the morning is a FREE oil change at Meineke!  Yay!!!

2015 Veterans Day Restaurant Offerings:

54th Street Grill -- Veterans and active duty military get a free meal (up to $12) on November 11.
Applebee’s -- Veterans and active duty military receive a free meal from a limited menu, on November 11.
Arooga’s -- Veterans and active duty military get a free meal from a fixed menu on November 11.
Bakers Square-- Veterans and active duty military get a free breakfast from a set menu on November 11.
Bar Louie – On November 10 and 11, veterans and active military personnel get a free meal up to a $12 value.
BJ’s Restaurant -- Active duty military and veterans receive a complimentary entree under $12.95 on November 11.
Bob Evans -- Veterans and active military personnel receive a free breakfast from a select menu on November 11.

Bonanza Steakhouses -- Active duty and retired military get a free buffet on November 11, 4 pm to close.
*NEW* Buffalo Wild Wings -- Veterans and active duty military personnel receive one small order of wings and a side of fries for free on November 11 from 4:00 pm-7:00 pm.
Burntwood Tavern -- Veterans and active military get a free lunch or dinner on November 11.
*NEW* Calhoun's -- Veterans and active duty military get a free meal on November 11.
California Pizza Kitchen – Veterans and active military receive a complimentary entrée from a special menu on November 11.
*NEW* California Tortilla -- On November 11, active duty and retired military get a free taco all day long.
*NEW* Carlo’s Bakery -- Veterans and active service members get a free large cannoli on November 11.
*NEW* Carrabba’s -- All veterans and active duty service members get a free appetizer November 9 through 15.
Cattlemens -- Active, inactive, and retired military personnel get a free Small Sirloin Steak Dinner on November 11.
*NEW* CentraArchy Restaurants -- Veterans and active duty service members get a free entrée and 25% off to their accompanied family and friends on November 11 at participating restaurants.
Cheeseburger in Paradise -- Active and retired military personnel receive a complimentary burger with fries on November 11.
Chicken Salad Chick -- On November 11, veterans and active duty military receive one sandwich or scoop of their choice of chicken salad, one side, a pickle spear and a cookie.
Chili’s -- Veterans and active military service members get a free entrée from a limited menu on November 11.
Claim Jumper -- On November 9, all Claim Jumper locations will provide veterans with a complimentary meal from a special menu.
*NEW* Cotton Patch Café -- Veterans and active duty military get a free chicken fried steak or chicken fried chicken on November 11.
Country Cookin -- Veterans and active duty military personnel receive a free meal from 2 pm – 8 pm on Tuesday, November 10.
Cracker Barrel -- Veterans get a complimentary Double Chocolate Fudge Coca-Cola Cake dessert during lunch and dinner on November 11.
Denny’s -- Active, inactive and retired military personnel get a free Build Your Own Grand Slam on November 11, from 5 a.m. to noon at participating locations.
*NEW* El Fenix -- Active duty and retired military members get a free meal from a select menu on November 11.
FATZ Café -- Veterans and active military get a free World Famous Calabash Chicken meal on November 11.
Figaro’s Pizza -- Veterans and active duty service members get a complimentary medium 1-topping pizza on November 11.
*NEW* Fire and Ice -- Veterans and active duty get a free lunch or dinner on November 11.
Firebirds Wood Fired Grill -- Active duty military and veterans get a free lunch or dinner entrée on November 11.
Friendly’s -- Friendly’s is treating veterans and active military to a free breakfast, lunch or dinner from a limited menu on Veterans Day,November 11.
Golden Corral -- Golden Corral Restaurants' Military Appreciation Night free dinner will be available on November 11, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Military retirees, veterans, active duty, National Guard and Reserves are all welcome.
Gordon Biersch -- Veterans and active military personnel receive a free appetizer on November 11.
Green Mill Restaurant and Bar -- Veterans and active duty military get a free lunch or dinner on November 11.
Greene Turtle -- Veterans and active duty military receive a free meal from a select menu on November 11 at participating locations.
*NEW* Hale and Hearty Soups -- Veterans and active duty service members get a complementary Small, Medium or Large cup of soup on November 11.
Hooters -- Veterans and active duty military get a free meal from a select menu at participating locations on November 11.
*NEW* Hoss's Steak and Sea House -- Veterans get a free meal from a select menu on November 11, from 11 am to 9 pm.
Hy-Vee -- Veterans and active duty military members get a free breakfast buffet on November 11.
IHOP-- On November 11, participating IHOP Restaurants offer veterans and active duty military free Red, White and Blue pancakes from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
IKEA -- Veterans get a free entrée from November 8 through 11.
Johnny Carino’s -- Veterans and active duty military get a free meal with their choice of unlimited soup or salad from a Veterans Day Menu on November 11.
Krispy Kreme -- Krispy Kreme is offering a free doughnut and small coffee to all veterans on November 11 at participating locations.
Krystal -- Active and retired military receive a free Krystal Chicken or Sausage Biscuit from 6 AM to 11:00 AM on November 11.
LaMar’s Donuts -- Veterans and active duty military get a free donut and 12 oz. coffee at participating locations on November 11.
Little Caesars -- Veterans and active military members receive a free $5 Lunch Combo from 11:00a.m. to 2:00p.m. on November 11.
Logan’s Roadhouse -- In addition to the 10% military discount offered every day, military and former military guests will also receive a free dessert on November 11.
McCormick & Schmick’s Seafood Restaurants -- On November 8, participating McCormick & Schmick's Seafood Restaurants will offer a complimentary entree to veterans from a special menu.
Max & Erma's – On November 11, participating Max & Erma’s locations are offering veterans and active military personnel a free Best Cheeseburger in America Combo meal.
Menchie's --  All active and retired military personnel will receive a free 6 oz. frozen yogurt on November 11.

Mission BBQ -- Veterans and active duty military get a free sandwich and a slice of cake on November 11.
O’Charley’s – Veterans and active duty service members get a free $9.99 meal on November 9, as well as free pie on November 11.
Old Country Buffet -- Current and former service members receive a free lunch at participating locations from 11 am until 2 pm onNovember 11.
Olive Garden – On November 11, all veterans and current service members get a free meal from a limited menu. Family members dining with them enjoy 10% off of their meals.
On the Border -- Veterans and active duty military can enjoy a free meal from the “Create Your Own Combo menu” on November  11.
Orange Leaf -- Veterans and active duty military get a free cup of froyo on November 11.
Outback Steakhouse – All active and former service members receive a free Bloomin’ Onion and a beverage on November 11. Outback is also offering active and former service members 15% off their meals Nov. 12 through Dec. 31.
Pizza Schmizza -- Veterans and active duty service members get a free slice of pizza on November 11, between 1 and 4 p.m.
Ponderosa Steakhouse -- Active duty and retired military get a free buffet on November 11, 4 pm to close.
Red Hot & Blue -- Veterans receive a free entrée with the purchase of a second entrée on November 9, 10 and 11. Coupon required.
Red Lobster -- Veterans, reserve and active-duty military personnel receive a free appetizer or dessert from a limited menu from November 9 through November 12. 

Red Robin – Veterans and active duty military get a free Red’s Tavern Double Burger with Bottomless Steak Fries on November 11.
Rock and Brews -- Veterans and active military personnel receive a complimentary pulled pork sandwich with a side choice throughout the day on November 11.
Ruby Tuesday -- Veterans, active duty and reserve service members get a free appetizer on November 11.
My friends who are on a diet, should probably use tomorrow as a HUGE cheat day!  (lol)