Saturday, February 9, 2013

Entering the IPhone Age

I have been a customer of a non-contact phone carrier since I first had a cell phone back in 2000. Yes, it took me that long to get a cell phone even back then. All I wanted at that time was an emergency phone, which became a necessity after I got stranded on the freeway and had to use the call box and decided that it would be better if I had a cell phone.  So I researched and found the least expensive plan I could find and decided I didn't want to have a contract so I would not be locked in.

In that course of time, I have had 4 phones, but the same phone number. My last phone was starting to have a screen that was fading a little, so I decided to get a new phone. That phone would not give me text messages from my friends. So I was looking into a smartphone for just a little more money and then I saw it!

I have resisted getting an IPhone because I didn't want to be locked into a contract paying $100 a month.  Well, Virgin Mobile has an IPhone and the price per month for unlimited talk, text, web, and data comes to $55 but I receive $5 off for auto pay. Exactly what I was paying for my other phone and service and I had no data plan since it was not a smart phone.

The other great thing is that I can write off a good portion of it because my business back office runs on the IPhone's platform so it really is necessary that I have one! Yay!!

I am having a lot of fun with it, as long as I can keep it out of my kids' hands! No sooner I had the phone and my 8 year old said, "Ok, mom. Here's how you change the wallpaper...and Babam!!"  My son comes home, sees my phone and immediately reaches for it to show me stuff.

Smack down! Hands off!! MY phone!! Back away and no one gets bitten!

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Have Butternut Squash? Here's an easy recipe!!

I love squash. Love it, love it, love it!

Yams? Let me at 'em!

Spaghetti Squash?  Pass the butter and parmesan, please!

Pumpkin? Can you say "Pumpkin Spice Latte" and not smile?

Didn't think so.

So I had a butternut squash in my pantry and wanted to find an easy and delicious way to prepare it. I hit the jackpot with this recipe!Simple Roasted Butternut Squash

Simple, delicious, and the family loved it! We have a college student from Brazil staying with us and even he loved it!

If you have ever prepared butternut squash, you know that the most time-consuming part is peeling and cutting. I recommend Cutco knives for any kitchen. The best knives I have ever tried! I also have the peeler. Made quick work of the task so I could get on to the chopping. I then put the pieces in a large bowl, poured the olive oil over them, added some minced garlic (I use the pre-minced kind in the jar-much easier!), added salt and pepper, tossed and laid them out on a baking sheet. To make things even easier, I used the silicone baking liners available just about anywhere. Clean up is a breeze!

I had some leftover squash in the morning so I simply cut up some green and red peppers and a little onion in butter, added the squash, and then some chopped kale. A simple, healthy breakfast!

Since I am trying to lose a few (**cough** 25 **cough) pounds, this helped me start the day with something other than cereal!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Two Less Orphans. Two Precious Girls. One Great Family

Today, I am joyful! JOYFUL!!  JOYFUL!!!!!!


Because 2 girls who were about to age out of orphanages in China have a family!  Eliza and Evangeline were just weeks away from aging out at 14 and become unavailable for adoption and their future was living on the streets.

Not anymore.

They have a family.

They have brothers and sisters.

They have a mom and dad.

They have someone to take care of their needs so they can be children again.

They have hope.

They have a future.

They will never know human trafficking.

Stop on over to the McCaslin's blog:

And bring tissues.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

I Never Thought I'd See the Day....

I never thought I would see the day that I would throw away all my skin care stuff.  But I did. I really, really did. Well, everything except my skin cleanser.

Why did I do this you ask? Because nothing worked.

Let me give you a backstory...

My friend told me about this new skin care product that she PROMISED me would have results. My thoughts? "Yeah, right."

I told her I will not sell skin care because nothing really works, nothing really erases those years. Nothing "makes you look younger." I refused to sell products that don't work to my friends who DO work hard for their money.  And I really didn't want a houseful of products I bought wholesale so I can sell them retail to my friends. And I certainly didn't want to convince them to sell it just so they can make money doing the same scam.   My sarcastic response was always, "Talk to my little, wrinkly hand."

But I decided since she would let me try it for a week for free, I gave it a half-hearted chance and was doing what I could to debunk her claim. I took my before picture, at the end of the day, with the terrible lighting in my bathroom, no makeup.

I used the product faithfully for 6 days.

Then I took my "after" photo under the same conditions in the same location. I put them side by side to compare.

To say I was shocked, was an understatement. My skin was brighter, the bags under my eyes were GONE! The dark circles were visibly reduced and my skin was definitely smoother!

So I took a gamble and posted these pictures on my FB wall. Within 1 hour I had 6 people who wanted to know what this was and how they could get their hands on it.

My husband tried it and has loved it. His keratosis (pre-cancerous lesions) on his face were gone in 4 days! His mom, my beautiful mother-in-law tried it for the lesion on her face. It was gone in a week. No more burning these things off!  They are both very happy!!

So what is this miracle elixir??  Nerium AD.  New on the market - the company is only 10 months old at this writing.  The website is

Friday, July 27, 2012

A Whole Year Has Gone By??? Sheesh!

Good grief! Has it really been a year since I blogged?? Facebook took up WAY too much of my time, I guess.  So here I am blogging again.

Peter turned 13 yesterday!! YIKES! I now have a full-blown teenager in the house! I will now begin hearing my mother's voice coming out of my mouth saying, "Just wait until you have kids of your own." Oh my word!

Actually, it has been happening for quite some time. Every night Caroline asks me what's for dinner and every time I reply, I hear "Yuck" to which I politely, but again with my mother's voice reply, "When you have your family and plan your dinners for them, you can cook what you want."

Thanks again, Mom.

Warning! Random rabbit trail ahead!!

Speaking of my children appear to have inherited my mother's aversion to peaches. More specifically, peach fuzz.  Let me explain.

My mother was able to tolerate the feel of peach fuzz. However, she loved peaches. So, we would go to the store and she would point to the ones she wanted and I would put them into the plastic bag. When we arrived home, I would then peel the peaches, rinse off any fuzzy residue, cut them up into a bowl and add a little sugar. Only then would my mother eat the peaches.

Many years later, my husband found out about my mother's peach fuzz aversion and decided to tease her.  He took a peach off of our backyard tree, washed it and was drying it when he went into the living room where she was sitting and said, "So I found out something about you this weekend that was very interesting." He then held out the peach to her and said, "Peach??" She retracted into the couch as if he were about to hand her a rattlesnake and said, "No thank you."

He laughed and said, "So when we have children, we're going to give them a peach and tell them to give it to Grandma and if she says she doesn't want it, it means she doesn't love you."

She looked him straight in the eye and said, "Your kids are gonna cry."

Fast-forward to today: Caroline never got meet my mother. Peter to my knowledge never knew the story of my mother and peaches.

Neither one will touch a peach.

Thank goodness for nectarines.

Monday, July 25, 2011

It's Time for Cooking With Caroline

This is the newest Food Network Star. Ok, maybe she has a few years yet, but I'm telling you, she's got the personality! She doesn't even flinch when her brother is screaming at the computer in the background. She just keeps going! What a pro!

Of course, my personal favorite part is when she says, "My mom is a brilliant and fascinating girl."

Saturday, July 23, 2011

We had two Chinese girls staying with us over the last 12 days. Luna and Vincens were delightful young women who enjoyed staying with us and especially enjoyed my chicken fried rice dish. Yessiree, this Italian girl can make Chinese chicken fried rice!

Farewell party with Luna and Vincens.

Caroline's tooth came out at the party shortly after this photo was taken.

The group of students and their families.

Off they go to Los Angeles, Las Vegas, New York, DC, Boston, and home to China!