Monday, November 15, 2010

A Quick Education In Wood and Steel

I've always appreciated great products and great furniture.  To fully appreciate something, you need to know a little bit about it.  Maybe I haven't appreciated some things as much as I should have because my education has been a bit lacking.  

I now am finally educated in the finer points of butcher block!  Whew, I can check that one off!  A butcher block is a thick, unvarnished, unpolished and untreated surface that gives more useful area to kitchen counter tops, islands, or tables.  You can basically use the whole surface as a cutting board!  Yet the surface is beautiful because it is natural.  Butcher block can also be used for other types of tables and decorative furniture.  Ideal materials for a kitchen butcher block surface would be oak, cherry, bamboo and maple because they won't harm knife blades.  I can definitely see the advantages for having a butcher block counter top~you don't have to worry as much about accidentally nicking and damaging the surface with your knives, or for that matter, nicking or dulling your knives.  Of course a butcher block doesn't necessarily have to be made of wood.  They can be blocks of marble, stone, glass or ceramic.  But wood would definitely be my choice!  Most fine homes with gourmet kitchens have at least 1 butcher block table, counter top, or island to make cooking more convenient!

Here's another one--an Adirondack chair is traditionally favored in outdoor settings such as beach and wilderness areas.  There is a rustic charm to these chairs.  It is reported and accepted that the original Adirondack chair was designed by Thomas Lee in 1903 when he was on vacation in the Adirondack Mountains and needed to have some comfortable chairs for his cabin.  He tried them out on his family until they all approved.  His design was made with 11 pieces of wood and he generously offered the design to an out-of-work carpenter friend of his, who patented it without his permission and sold them with great success.  The wide armrests are great to put food on and the rounded back and contoured seats make them surprisingly comfortable.  Adirondack chairs are also quite affordable and last a long time so they are a great furniture investment!  I think that my next outdoor chair purchase will be one of these!
 Finally, a great alternative to wood for the outdoors is stainless steel.  If not treated properly, wood does tend to decay when exposed to the elements.  Not so with stainless steel! Stainless steel tables may be an option to consider if you don't want to be bothered by regular wood treatment processes or are in a harsher environment.  Stainless steel is easy to clean, lightweight for easy moving and quite attractive!  And for the laundry room or garage there is nothing like shiny stainless steel utility sinks!
 

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Great Giveaways!



    image

    Monday, November 8, 2010

    Tropical Traditions Palm Shortening Giveaway!

    Congratulations to #62, Eileen, who said - tweeted this! http://twitter.com/2sic2mooov/status/7104529292070912  thankyou!

     


    I think Tropical Traditions is the best place to get Healthy Oils of any kind!  I've now got the chance to give away another Tropical Tradition Cooking Product.  It's Tropical Traditions Palm Shortening.  It is derived from Palm Oil, which is the most widely used oil in the world except the US.  Palm Shortening has had some of its unsaturated fats removed, which gives it a very firm texture and high melting point.  It has no trans fats and can be used for baking just like shortening!  It is colorless and odorless as well. 
    I received the gallon container of the palm shortening and I absolutely love it for cooking and baking.  It is everything a shortening should be--doesn't take away from the flavors I'm using and I feel good about cooking with it because it has no trans fats!  A whole gallon will last me forever!  I've cooked eggs, meat and vegetables with it and add it to cookie mixes.  It's great!  Everything tastes so much better using it!  I'm not kidding, it takes my cooking to another level.  Right now through Sunday, November 21st  you can get it on sale for $19.85, that's 44%off!     And if you missed it this time, there will always be another opportunity.  Just sign up for their newsletter for notifications on all their great sales and promotions.  


    One person is going to win a gallon container of Tropical Traditions Organic Palm Shortening!  I'm excited to let you in on the details here!  To enter, first do this mandatory entry and any other extra entries that you'd like:
    MANDATORY:


    • Visit Tropical Traditions and let me know something that really floats your boat there!
    Extra entries:
    • Grab my button on the right side bar and put it on your blog or site!  Let me know where! (+2) Leave two comments for two entries!
    • Tell me about your most tropical experience!  Would you want to make it a tradition? (+3) Leave three comments for three entries!
    • Subscribe to the Tropical Tradition Newsletter! (+2)
    • Make an order from Tropical Tradition and e-mail me the receipt at daisydoo200 at yahoo dot com  Must be done within the time of this giveaway.  $15 minimum.  First time orders use this code - 5954910. You will get a cool recipe book with 85 recipes and more! (+5)
    • Subscribe to my RSS Feed (+1)
    • Follow Tropical Traditions on Twitter! (+1)
    • Tweet about this and get 1 entry every day you do!  Leave your tweet status! You can do that by clicking on the date you tweeted! (+1)  
    A GAL NEEDS...Tropical Traditions Organic Palm Shortening! #Giveaway http://bit.ly/cWmhqB 11/29/10 #Win

    This Giveaway is open to both US and Canada and will end on 11/29/10!  Winner will be selected by random number generator and will be notified by e-mail! Thank you so much to Tropical Traditions for keeping us healthy with your great products!  I was provided product for an honest review and winner will also be provided product by Tropical Traditions!


    Thursday, November 4, 2010

    A CSN Stores Giveaway!

    Congratulations to #75, Domestic Diva, who said. ... . tea kettle: looks just like a fall leaf!  Thanks so much to everyone who entered!  I loved your creative answers and it goes to show that CSN truly has variety and almost anything you could want, in whatever color you want!





    I just ended a $70 CSN Giveaway and I'm back with another one!
    I thought it would be fun to pick a color and see what I come up with at CSN in that specific color.  So without looking it up beforehand, I picked orange b/c it is such a great fall color and it matches my blog for sure!  Here are some things that are orange at CSN:
    The P'kolino Silly Soft IggySeat!  It's bound to be a big favorite with your kids!

     The Tommy Bahama Orange Cay Comforter Set!  Who knew that orange could be so appealing in the bedroom?
    The Lexington Studios Recipes Decorative Wall Clock!  This would make a great gift!


    Please feel free to enter and enjoy the $70 gift code that you can win and enjoy!  Here is what you need to do to enter:


    Mandatory:
    Visit CSNStores.com and leave me a link to something that has orange in it, like the color of the leaves outside and the fall pumpkins!  I know I didn't list the only orange items at CSN.  CSN has so much that they must have thousands of items that have that color in them.  So go take a gander and come back here and enter to win!


    Optional Extra Entries (Leave a comment for each extra entry):


    • Follow CSNStores on Twitter!  Leave your tweet name!
    • Follow me on Twitter!  Leave your tweet name!
    • Follow me on Google Friend Connect!
    • Subscribe to my e-mails! (Right Sidebar)
    • Follow me on Networked Blogs!  (Right Sidebar)
    • Subscribe to my RSS Feed! (Right Sidebar)
    • Tweet about this leaving me a link! You can do this 1X daily!  Tweet this if you'd like~~A GAL NEEDS...A $70 CSN Gift Code #Giveaway! 11/23 http://bit.ly/da5T18 #Win
    • Like CSNStores on Facebook!
    • Friend me on Facebook!
    • (+3) Read my CSN Review and comment there then come back and comment here 3X that you did!
     This contest will end on Monday, November 23, 2010 at approx. 11:59 pm.  Winner will be chosen with random.org and notified with e-mail. Please make sure that all entries are valid with a legitimate e-mail.  Must be over 18 to participate.  Open to US and Canada.  CSN is not responsible for shipping to Canada. 

    Wednesday, November 3, 2010

    Great Giveaways!

    Just Ducky

    Tuesday, November 2, 2010

    My Latest CSNStores Purchases!

    As many of you know, CSN is an online mall of stores with great selections and prices.  For instance, they have an incredible selection of  kitchen bar stools!  CSN is a favorite site of mine to go shopping for a variety of things!  Here are the latest examples!
    __________________________________
    After much deliberation, I decided to purchase a Chef's Knife.  I have some OK knives in my kitchen, but after attending a great cooking class in September, I knew I needed a better knife for the kitchen.  Thus my decision. This will be my special go-to knife.  After looking awhile, I decided to get this one:

    It's the Calphalon 8" Chef's Knife and it's a beauty!  I will now be able to slice and dice like Rachael Ray in the kitchen!  So yes, I'm very excited.  But that's not all!


    I have long been eying cowboy boots.  They look so comfortable and stylish at the same time.  And with winter coming up, I need something I can throw on and still look OK at work.  So, yes, I got these gorgeous things:
    Laredo Women's Basic Cowboy Boots in Black
    And because I was still thinking about the kitchen, I really fell in love with this spice rack.  Did you know that you should never store your spices above the stove?  The rising heat will cause the spice oils to dry out and go rancid!  Well, guess where all mine are?  Until now...I got the Spectrum Euro Wall-Mounted Spice Rack In Black!

    These purchases are definitely some things this gal needed!  I'm going to be enjoying these for a very long time!  Oh, did I mention CSNStores also has a great selection of kitchen bar stools?    And please stay tuned right here for another great giveaway sponsored by CSNStores.com!

    Monday, November 1, 2010

    Great Giveaways!





    • Win a $99 Value of Elizabeth Grant Ultimate Cellular Concentrate at Menopausal New Mom!  Ends 11/10/10!






    Saturday, October 30, 2010

    A Fun Halloween Ride!

     Today was a gorgeous day...until 3 pm.  Then it opened up and poured buckets the rest of the day and evening! Greg and I went on a bike ride to celebrate the next to last day in October before the rain came pouring down!  We set off at around noon and I became a bit enthralled with some of the scenery we saw.  I meant to take nature pictures of our beautiful ride and I did take one,


              but ended up mostly taking pictures of people's Halloween fun!                                                                   Here is what I saw:   

                                        Some cool-looking cornstalks and pumpkins!

                                       Cute Pumpkins near some scary gargoyles!
                                        

                              A beautiful front porch with an awesome pumpkin display
                                                          
                                                 Some very creative jack-o-lanterns



                                 A porch that needed sweeping and cleaning very badly!

                  And this strange fellow, running straight toward me.  It gave me quite a scare...

                                    Until he wished me a very Happy Halloween!
                                                        I hope you have one too!

    Tuesday, October 26, 2010

    Great Giveaways!


    • Zingo Tots is giving away a Progresso Healthier You Prize Pak, which includes soup, an exercise ball, and a dvd!  Ends 11/1/10!
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    My Review of One Infused Anodized 10" Stir Fry Pan

    Originally submitted at CSN Stores

    Prepare all your favorite rice, vegetables and Asian inspired dishes on this versatile Calphalon stir fry pan. The traditional round-bottom Calphalon pan is easy use on Western ranges, and has a long handle for easy lifting, tossing, and turning, and a flat bottom for stability. The cast stainless-...

    A Great Way To Stir Fry!
    By Helena from Sandy, UIT on 10/26/2010
    5out of 5
    Pros: Non-Stick, Easy To Clean, Handle Stays Cool, Retains Heat, Distributes Heat Evenly
    Best Uses: Simple Meals, Small Kitchens, Gifts
    Describe Yourself: Casual Cook
    I was impressed with this pan! The first meal I prepared was a real test. My son brought home a deer and I cooked venison stir fry in this pan. It turned out great! The meat was evenly cooked and tender. The flavor was delicious! I love it!
     Recipe for Easy Venison Stir-Fry! To remove any gamey taste, marinate venison in 1 cup of vinegar and 1 cup water for 3 hours.  Next, rinse meat and soak in 2 cups milk for another several hours. Rinse meat.
    Slice 1 onion,1 green or red pepper and 1 tomato.  Set aside.
    Brown venison in oil.  It works best if you use higher heat b/c meat will be less dry. 
    When steaks are nearing desired wellness, add pepper, onion and  tomato. Continue cooking until vegetables are thoroughly heated and stir continuously.  Serve over white or wild rice. Enjoy!








    Friday, October 22, 2010

    Great Giveaways!

    Minaret Morning, Ansel Adams Wilderness


    • Enter at Dear Crissy to Win a copy of  'The Banner Brand' by Mark Cenicola and a brand new Ipod Touch! Ends 11/7/10!
    • Win a date night food prize pack from Macaroni Grill and  a $25 Visa Card! Enter at The Life Of Rylie!  Ends 11/2/10!
    • Win a $50 Gift Card to Macy's!  Enter at MomStart!  Ends 11/1/10!

    Tuesday, October 19, 2010

    Some New Hair Ideas!

    Do you ever get that ho hum feeling about your hair?  It's just same old, same old all the time?  Yes, I do too!  And seriously, I've done the lightening, highlighting, the perming, the cutting, teasing, the curling the straightening.  I've done pony tails, buns, pig tails, bangs, spikes and ringlets.  I get all that!  But I'm looking for some new ideas! Well, I found a great new resource in the Alternative Hair Show!  This year it was held at London's Royal Albert Hall on October 14th!  This was their silver anniversary and they really did it up...I now have a whole new vision of what my hair could look like!  There were 25 teams representing 25 years from all over the world.  Angus Mitchell represented the US.  I don't have any more excuses for boring hair--take a look at what I mean!  My top five:






    No more excuses, ladies!  Just do it!!!