Decorate And Protect Your Table During Holiday Dinners

Decorative Christmad Trivet Runner.This beautiful Christmas Trivet Runner from Anna Stay will protect your table from hot or cold and look lovely too.

It is 40 inches long and 12 inches wide, so most serving bowls or platters will fit easily, and it will cover the middle of most tables.

It can handle up to 300 degrees heat and is insulated to protect your table. It will help keep the items hot longer too. Or cold if you place cold items on it. You can put both cold and hot items on it, but not too close to each other.

This one is made especially for Christmas. It has a lovely holiday design and is red.

Holiday design on the Anna Stay trivet runner.That is not going to prevent us from using it for Thanksgiving Dinner this year, as well as our Christmas Dinner. It can be used at any time if you don’t mind the decorations.

Some of my pots on the Anna Stay Trivet Runner.I actually got this for my Mom to use for our holiday dinners. She is the one who does most of the cooking still. She really likes it. It will replace a couple of trivets and some pot holders on the table. The table will look a lot better this year without all the mismatched items.

The table runner is easy to clean. Just wipe it with a soapy rag. Roll it up and store it in a drawer till you need it again.

I like it.

I received a free product to review.


Tall Salt And Pepper Grinders

Tall Salt and Pepper grinders from Daily Kitchen.These Tall Salt and Pepper Grinders from Daily Kitchen are great for use in the kitchen.

I have some of my spices out on a lazy susan and having the salt and pepper stick up over the other stuff makes it easier to grab.

I like the looks of these too. Tall and pretty. The top is shiny. They are easy to hold.

Tall salt grinder in my hand.The grinder is ceramic and you can adjust it to real fine or coarse. These can be used to grind any other kinds of spices or herbs you need.

The top comes off easy and they are easy to fill and refill. I am very happy with them. I’m gonna give my other set to my cousin and keep these.

I received a free product to review.


Brieftons QuickPull Food Chopper Review

Brieftons Tall QuickPull Food Chopper.I had fun with this Tall QuickPull Food Chopper from Brieftons. Pulling the handle and watching the onions swirl around is pretty neat.

Even if you have an electric chopper, this one would be good to have for those times when the power goes out. We were without electricity for 17 days once. Several areas of the US have been without electricity because of storms. It is nice to still be able to chop food easy, when your electric stuff doesn’t work.

If you are one of those folks that likes to go off into the woods for weeks, then you will like this too. It isn’t heavy, you can carry other things inside it, and it can chop most foods.

It not only chops it mixes. You can put your eggs in there for omelets and pull a few times. You end up with nice fluffy eggs. The mixer will work with any relatively thin items.

And it comes with a lid so if you are making something that doesn’t get used immediately, just put the lid on and store till needed.

Chopped onion and garlic.

I chopped up my garlic and onion mix for Stroganoff in this. Planning to us it for my bell pepper and onion that goes in meat loaf too.

I pulled the cord a few times and ended up with really fine onion. It would make great relish. I like this food chopper!

I received a free product to review.

$100 Back To School Party With Chuck E. Cheese

Chuck E. Cheese Back to School Party.While school is back in session that doesn’t mean you can’t have fun with your family! Take a minute to enjoy family time and enter for a chance to win a $100 Chuck E. Cheese gift card hosted by The Kids Did It and The Mommy Island with special co-host Coupons and Freebies Mom.

If you no longer have kids in school, then enter to win it for someone else. I’m sure you know a mom who would love to have a $100 Chuck E. Cheese gift card. It would give her a break from cooking at least one meal. Wouldn’t mind that myself.

ONE entrant will be selected by the entry form to win a $100 Chuck E. Cheese gift card. Open for entry in the Continental US, 18 years and older from 09/07/16 thru 09/28/2016 at 11:59pm ET. Winner will have 24 hours to respond to notification email to claim their prize or a new winner will be selected. See Rafflecopter for official rules. The Kids Did It and The Mommy Island are responsible for sending the winner’s prize via email. Participating bloggers are not responsible for fulfilling prize obligations.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Keep Your Leftovers Safely

Freshkeeper set from Frigidaire.This set of 15 food storage containers and lids will help you keep your leftovers sealed up and safe to eat.

There are several different sizes so you will most likely find one to fit any amount of leftovers.

The lids seal easy and keep the food fresh.

Some of my freshkeeper storage containers.I’m using the smaller ones for keeping the rest of a tomato and the last of my grapes.

The bigger one has some brownies in it.

One size is perfect for holding sandwiches too, if you need to take a sandwich to the park or to work.

The plastic these are made of is relatively thin and flexible, but it will not stand up to being dropped off a roof. Just saying.

The plastic is BPA-free and non-toxic, and they can be used in the freezer, the microwave, and the dishwasher.

I received a free product to review.



Are You Getting Enough Fiber?

OmniGreen Labs Dietary Fiber.Sometimes it is hard to get enough fiber in your diet. Especially when you are not eating at set meal times. I have had that problem lately.

If you are grabbing whatever you can get from fast food places or convenience stores, then you may not be getting enough fiber.

Even if you are eating regular meals at home it isn’t always easy to get enough fiber.

Without fiber your digestive system doesn’t work nearly as well as it should, and if that goes on long enough you can end up with some serious problems. Lack of fiber is one of the contributing causes of colon cancer. So it is an important part of a good diet.

Adding fiber to your diet is easy with this Fiber Powder from OmniGreen Labs. It even comes with a little scoop so you can easily get the right dosage.

Each serving has 4 grams of Fiber. If you are not used to having fiber in your diet you should probably start off with a small dose and work your way up to the full recommended dosage of two servings a day.

This powder completely dissolves in a glass of water.

Water with a dose of OmniGreen Labs Fiber Powder in it.It has no taste that I can detect and it doesn’t thicken the water. You can add the fiber to any drink you want to put it in. Or add it to your food. Take it however you want to.

This product has no preservatives, chemicals, artificial colors, or flavors in it. It is made in an FDA approved c-GMP Certified Facility.

The package is not fancy, just a fairly plain white jar.

The fiber has helped my digestive system.  I have had a problem with regularity the last few months and that has gotten much better since I started adding the fiber to my diet.  It should continue to improve as my system gets used to the addition.

I like this fiber. It is easy to use.

I received a free product to review.

Been Looking For A No-Stick Pan

Finally got one! This big Saute and Fry Pan from WaxonWare is really wonderful.

Big pan from WaxonWare.It holds 4.5 quarts of whatever you want to cook. I have not used it to full capacity yet. I’m planning to use it for making chicken dumplings soon. I don’t need to cook enough for a horde so it should be more than big enough.

Frying potatoes in the WaxonWare pan.


I have used this pan for frying potatoes twice. And made Stroganoff in it once.

Making Stroganoff in the WaxonWare pan.

I have also made our breakfast gravy in it.

Nothing has stuck to this pan so far. Not even the least little bit.

I’m gonna use it for frying pork chops next time I do that. I expect it to work wonderfully well.

The bottom of the pan is really nice. Supposed to distribute heat evenly and it seems to do a good job of that.

Bottom of WaxonWare pan.You can use this pan on any cooking surface including induction stoves. It can be washed in the dishwasher but they recommend you wash it by hand to make it last longer.

It washes really easy. You can pretty much just wipe it out if you are gonna use again immediately. I did that once. No scrubbing needed at all. So far anyway.

The glass lid has a silicone rim and an opening so you can pour liquid out. I love the lid!

It is PTFE, PFOA, and APEO Free.

It comes with a 30 day money back guarantee and a 3 year limited warranty.

This has become my go-to pan for anything that might stick. I really needed a good no stick pan. I love this one!

If you need a good pan, try one of these. They do have different sizes and types as well if you don’t want one this big. Check out their website.

They can also be found on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pinterest.

I received a free product to review.



Making Iced Cappuccino At Home Saves Money

Making your own Iced Cappuccino at home can save you a lot of money. If you go to a coffee shop you are talking close to 5 bucks a pop, or more. That adds up to a whole lot of money. If you only get one a week that is still a minimum $20 a month.  Over a year that adds up a really nice pair of boots ($240).A box of Blender Boyz Iced Cappuccino Mix.

On the other hand, if you get some Blender Boyz Iced Cappuccino Mix and make your own drinks, you will only be spending about $1.25, which adds up to $5 a month, or $60 a year. Huge difference.

They sent me a box of each flavor to try. I’m not sure which one I like best because they are all good. I’m sort of leaning toward the Original, but the French Vanilla is really good, and I even liked the Caramel. My husband liked the Caramel the best.

Blender Boyz Iced Cappuccino Pouches.

These are really easy to make too. Just put a cup of ice in your blender, add a fourth of a cup of milk, and the pouch of cappuccino mix, and blend.

They are GOOD! I could get addicted easily. If I do at least it will be cheaper than a coffee shop.

You can order them online at,, the Blender Boyz website, and several other locations.

The pouches of drink mix do not have to be refrigerated, and you can buy them in sets of 24 boxes of the same flavor, or combo packs that include all three flavors.

If you own a restaurant, diner, or café, you can buy in bulk for wholesale prices. Blender Boyz make it so easy to make drinks that any employee can do it.

Please follow Blender Boyz on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.


I received a free product to review.

Don’t Waste Your Kitchen Scraps

Stainless Steel Kitchen Compost Bin.Get one of these Stainless Steel Kitchen Compost Bins and save all your scraps for the garden. If you don’t garden yourself, one of your family members, or neighbors probably does.

They would probably be happy to bring you some of their extra produce in exchange for some compost.

This is also great for folks who raise chickens. I feed most of my scraps to the flock. What they don’t eat is left to decompose, and what they do eat, turns into chicken poop, which also makes good fertilizer.

This bin has a charcoal filter in the lid so you won’t have to worry about the scraps starting to smell before you can get rid of them either.

And it looks really nice. Sort of like a small trash can. It will fit under a cabinet, under the sink, or on the counter.

The compost bin on my counter.

It is really easy to clean too. I just rinse it most of the time, and give it a complete clean every few days.

It holds enough (1.2 Gallons) that you don’t have to worry about it filling up for a few days,  unless you are cooking for a horde, or preparing a month ahead, or so.

I am really happy with the one I have. It is getting a lot of use.

I received a free product to review.

Poppy Peters Mystery Series Book Blast Giveaway

All of the books in this series look interesting. Being from the south myself (just not quite so far south), I have some sympathy for anyone visiting for the first time. Or even the second, or third.

These books might be worth reading just for the recipes. What do you think?

(Poppy Peters Mysteries Book 1)

Book Summary:
After an injury derails Poppy Peters’ ballet career, she gathers the courage to follow in her grandmother’s footsteps and attend Calle Pastry Academy in a small-town in Georgia. Poppy has her work cut out for her not only fitting in with her charming (and not-so-charming ) Southern classmates but also proving her worth to her teachers after her first publicly humiliating attempt a making the school’s famous peach pie. But Poppy’s pastry problems go from bad to worse when she’s suddenly accused of stealing expensive black truffles, and her attempt to clear her name goes awry…resulting in her finding a dead body instead! If Poppy’s going to survive this culinary experience, she’ll need to find the missing truffles and track down a killer, all while honing her baking skills to compete in the school’s dessert competition for a coveted pastry internship in Paris. Can Poppy prove she’s one tough cookie? Or is her life about to crumble?

**Recipes Included**


ChocolateMacaronsandaDeadGroom (1)CHOCOLATE MACAROONS AND A DEAD GROOM
(Poppy Peters Mysteries Book 2)

Book Summary:
When Poppy Peters takes an internship in Paris working for a top pastry chef, she realizes that bakery life isn’t all cupcakes and frosting. The sous pastry chef dislikes foreigners, her mentor only speaks French, and to top that all off she finds the groom of the wedding she’s catering dead in his own backyard. But Lord Dovington wasn’t just a handsome royal waiting to sweep his bride-to-be off of her feet. He was also a well-known playboy with a long line of vengeful exes.

Now, as one of the prime suspects, Poppy must prove she’s innocent . . . and that her recipe for chocolate macaroons isn’t to blame. But the clock is ticking, and with a missing diamond, a break-in, and a hot batch of reporters on her tail, Poppy has a lot of sifting to do. Will she find the killer before she too gets baked?

**Recipes Included**


BananaFosterandadeadmobsterBANANAS FOSTER AND A DEAD MOBSTER
(Poppy Peters Mysteries Book 3)

Book Summary:
Reluctant sleuth Poppy Peters is back in Georgia, and her last semester of pastry school is no icing on the cake when a body is discovered at the local farmer’s market, and the murder weapon has Poppy’s name on it. Not to mention, the victim belonged to a deadly southern crime family. Now, Poppy is being tailed by the mafia, and it doesn’t help that the school’s new pastry instructor has her working with her worst rival. But after a heart-stopping car chase, a frightening discovery at an old jam factory, and a spontaneous trip to New Orleans, Poppy discovers a secret that makes her past feats look like a piece of peach pie. Poppy’s chances of making it to graduation day are about to go up in flames just like her Bananas Foster.

**Recipes included!**

Praise for the Book

“A sweet and satisfying mystery that will leave you hungry for more! A. Gardner’s Poppy Peters Mysteries have earned a place on my keeper shelf!”
~ Gemma Halliday, New York Times bestselling mystery author

“Charming cozy mystery featuring likable characters.”
~Debbie Wiley, Fresh Fiction

“A. Gardner cooks up one fabulous mystery with this Southern suspense.”
~Pauline Michael, Night Owl Reviews

My first encounter with a southern guy isn’t going so well. So far I’ve admitted I have never tried sweet tea, and my big toe is a little too long for the shoes I am wearing. Nice one, Poppy. Now he is going to think I am a weird westerner with a foot fetish. I try hard not to look down at my black, high-heeled boots. Why am I the only one on campus wearing any black?
“My name is Cole,” the man says with a grin on his face. I reach out to shake his hand. My palms are sweating just like every other place on my body. I haven’t even turned thirty yet, and I’m already having hot flashes. It is going to take me some time to get used to this heat.
“Poppy Peters,” I reply. I wipe my forehead and underneath my eyes. I bite my lip when I see a bit of smeared mascara on the side of my finger. It is so humid my makeup is melting off. “Is it always this hot here?”
“Welcome to Georgia.” Cole chuckles and shrugs as we walk towards the student bakery. Cole is one of the first students I bumped into at the registration office. His lemon-colored T-shirt shines bright compared to his dark skin, and his impressive physique makes me look at him twice. His eyes are intriguing—an even mix of blue and green.
As we walk, I can’t help but admire how lush the vegetation is on campus. Every tree outstretches towards the sidewalks, providing a much needed break from the glaring sun. The patches of grass remind me of ocean waves, if the ocean sparkled like emeralds. Even the flowerbeds near the Administration building had bundles of purple and orange wildflowers that couldn’t be contained.
“What’s that smell?” I ask. “And don’t say it smells like fresh meat. I heard a teacher in the Registrar’s Office use that joke about a hundred times.”
“I’ll show you.”
I follow Cole across campus until the heavenly smell of baked bread and sugary doughnuts grows stronger. I long for that smell sometimes. It takes me back to my schoolgirl days when I spent my weekends in the kitchen with Grandma Liz. My Grandma Liz came to Calle Pastry Academy when she was in her early twenties. I imagine her tiny frame and long, dancer legs. It’s a miracle that she came to this school and still stayed so thin.


A GardnerAuthor A. Gardner
A. Gardner is a native westerner exploring the sweet bites of the south. After years of working in the healthcare industry, she moved across the country with her husband and adventurous baby boy. She is a mystery and romance writer with a serious cupcake obsession and a love of storytelling that began at an early age. When she is not writing, she is either chasing after her son, out for a swim, trying out a new recipe, or painting her nails bright blue.

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$50 Blast Giveaway

Enter to win an Amazon Gift Card or Paypal Cash

Ends 12/20/15

Open only to those who can legally enter, receive and use an Gift Code or Paypal Cash. Winning Entry will be verified prior to prize being awarded. No purchase necessary. You must be 18 or older to enter or have your parent enter for you. The winner will be chosen by rafflecopter and announced here as well as emailed and will have 48 hours to respond or a new winner will be chosen. This giveaway is in no way associated with Facebook, Twitter, Rafflecopter or any other entity unless otherwise specified. The number of eligible entries received determines the odds of winning. Giveaway was organized by Kathy from I Am A Reader and sponsored by

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