Archive for the ‘Review’ Category

I think you know I’m sort of addicted to programs that do fun things to photos.  Today Giveawayoftheday.com has a good one  Sketch Drawer, by SoftOrbits.,  http://www.softorbits.com/photo-to-sketch-converter/.

Thought I’d share with you.  Some people had trouble with activating.  Mine went through one-two-three.  Some had it crash during photo process.  Mine didn’t.  I have a Win7 64 OS, and I had no trouble with the program other than it not fitting in my screen right, so I had to move it around.  Because of my poor vision, I have different settings.  Anyway, go grab it.  It’s as nice program.  I’m going to go play now.



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The plumbers came and it appears all is well.  I’m thinking positive.


We got this from HSN.com.  Har loves his hard boiled eggs, and while it doesn’t poach well, it makes great, as far as I can tell perfect, hard boiled eggs.  Real easy to peel.  We set the timer on the microwave for what we estimated to be the right time to turn the egg thingy off, but that wasn’t necessary.  It honked for all it was worth at us till we turned it off when the eggs were ready.  Handy feature for forgetful me.


Dash Egg Cooker

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L’Shanah Tovah to my friends and family observing Rosh Hashanah.

Do you belong to MyPoints.com?  I fairly regularly earn enough points to get free giftr cards.  Generally I get restaurant ones.  Makes me feel like I’ve earned a treat.  Anyway, I want to applaud their customer service.  HSN apparently doesn’t send them the info to credit my account when I make purchases from them.  I recently had three purchases that weren’t credited.  One of them, a biggie, I worked out with HSN.  MyPoints took care of the other two within 24 hours, (which started on a Sunday).  I really appreciate good customer servicer.  There’s another one I have to wait another week on.  We shall see if HSN steps up.


Giveawayoftheday.com has a nice photo editing program today.  Visually it’s not for me with my poor vision, and it has a large footprint.  One of the commenters suggested this free program, which I downloaded through CNet, so I felt safe about it.  http://www.funny-photo-maker.com/.  A couple of examples:


You know I’m a BzzAgent and review products they give me for free.  I have two today


1 – I am totally in love with Covergirl in general, but I will definitely keep purchasing these products, COVERGIRL & Olay Tone Rehab 2-in-1 Foundation and COVERGIRL & Olay Pressed Powder.  My husband (see $2 bill) hates makeup.  He couldn’t tell (perhaps someone more observant could) I was wearing these, and told me how good I looked the first time I wore them.  He doesn’t usually comment on how I look.  Major thumbs up.  My daughter (beer glass), who usually notices everything, came out to visit and almost immediately told me how good my skin looked, not my makeup, my skin.  Another thumbs up.  This makeup doesn’t settle in your nooks and crannies (or if you’re not an English Muffin, wrinkles), and really smooths out your skin tone.  I’m a believer.


2 –  I was sent coupons for free Glade Expressions room fresheners.

I had a hard time finding them.  I went to two different Walmarts and neither had them.  A local supermarket didn’t either.  I went to Pathmark in Port Jefferson and found them both there, but a prices higher than my free coupons allowed.  Being a good little bargain hunter, I was prepared.  I’d downloaded a coupon online for $2 off two glade purchases.  I did get them for free (if you disregard the price of gas).

I love the look and the scent of the oil diffuser starter kit in pineapple mangosteen.  I wish the scent spread out more, but that’s true of all diffusers I’ve used.  My livingroom is large, and I might want to have two going at once.  Very pretty and pleasant.

The Glade Experssions starter kit comes with an elegantly shaped white squeeze sprayer.  I got it in cotton & Italian mandarin.  I’m using that in the bathroom, where a squeeze will be more often desirable.  It’s also a pleasant scent which I’d prefer with more mandarin, but that’s just a matter of personal taste.  It does the job.

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Review:  I broke down and decided to try Dermastore’s SmartLash.  It’s not supposed to have the side effects of Latisse, so I felt pretty safe trying it.  I used it once a day (not recommended twice) for about 3 weeks.  I woke up last Sunday morning and when I went to put on my mascara, I saw dark rings around the iris’ of both eyes.  It looked like someone took a magic marker and drew a circle around them.  Very scary, monsteresque looking.  I could have done an episode of Supernatural, if I could act.  I called Dermastore Monday, and the customer service rep insisted that the product was all natural and couldn’t do any harm.  I mentioned that hemlock is all natural.  She may or may not have gotten the message.  She kept saying it couldn’t discolor my eyelids.  My eyelids aren’t discolored, so that may be true.  She apparently doesn’t know what the iris is.  I asked to speak to someone in charge.  Got a call back Thursday.  The person said she never heard any complaints like this before, but would surely keep on top of it, and asked me to contact her after I see my opthamologist, credited my card for the original purchase, and cancelled auto delivery.  She couldn’t understand why the person I originally spoke to didn’t do that.  Apparently she never met her.  Okay, I know this has worked for some, but, I do not recommend this product.  Just for the record, since I stopped using SmartLash, the thick dark rings have become thinner.  I’m really hoping they go away.


This recipe is from Giada, and I call it a cheat recipe because it includes jarred marinara sauce (I used Newman’s because it was on sale, and is really good)  My chopped carrots never got soft enough, and in the future I will use only ones I’ve teeny tiny diced, or perhaps a cup of frozen mixed vegetables.  The pasta I used was small whole grain elbows.  It is really delicious, and for me it’s a meal.

Quick and Spicy Tomato Soup
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 carrots, peeled and chopped
1 small onion, chopped (diced tiny)
1 clove garlic, minced
1 (26-ounce) jar marinara sauce
2 (14-ounce) cans chicken broth
1 (15-ounce) can cannellini beans, drained and rinsed
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1/2 cup pastina pasta (or any small pasta)
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Warm the olive oil in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the carrots, onion, and garlic and saute until soft, about 2 minutes.
Add the jar of marinara sauce, chicken broth, cannellini beans, red pepper flakes, pasta, salt and pepper. Simmer for at least 10 minutes.
My friend Patty sent this.  All my health conscious friends need to relax and read it.

 Q: Doctor, I’ve heard that cardiovascular exercise can prolong life. Is this true? A: Heart only good for so many beats, and that it… Don’t waste on exercise. Everything wear out eventually. Speeding up heart not make you live longer; it like saying you extend life of car by driving faster. Want to live longer? Take nap.
Q: Should I reduce my alcohol intake?
A: Oh no. Wine made from fruit. Brandy distilled wine, that mean they take water out of fruity bit so you get even more of goodness that way. Beer also made of grain. Bottom up!
Q: How can I calculate my body/fat ratio?
A: Well, if you have body and you have fat, your ratio one to one. If you have two body, your ratio two to one.
Q: What are some of the advantages of participating in a regular exercise program?
A: Can’t think of single one, sorry. My philosophy: No pain…good! Q: Aren’t fried foods bad for you?
A: YOU NOT LISTENING! Food fried in vegetable oil. How getting more vegetable be bad?
: Will sit-ups help prevent me from getting a little soft around the middle? A: Oh no! When you exercise muscle, it get bigger. You should only be doing sit-up if you want bigger stomach.
Q: Is chocolate bad for me?
A: You crazy?!? HEL-LO-O!! Cocoa bean! Another vegetable! It best feel-good food around!
Q: Is swimming good for your figure?
A: If swimming good for figure, explain whale to me.
Q: Is getting in shape important for my lifestyle?
A: Hey! ‘Round’ is shape! Well… I hope this has cleared up any misconceptions you may have had about food and diets.
And remember: Life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways – Chardonnay in one hand – chocolate in the other – body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming “WOO-HOO, what a ride!!”
For those of you who watch what you eat, here’s the final word on nutrition and health. It’s a relief to know the truth after all those conflicting nutritional studies.
1. The Japanese eat very little fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
2. The Mexicans eat a lot of fat and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
3. The Chinese drink very little red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
4. The Italians drink a lot of red wine and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans…
5. The Germans drink a lot of beer and eat lots of sausages and fats and suffer fewer heart attacks than Americans.
CONCLUSION: Eat and drink what you like. Speaking English is apparently what kills you.

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You know that when you buy kitchen appliances, originally seen on shopping network shows, for half price or less on Ebay, they’re usually returns or floor sample. That’s fine, and they’re usually perfect and unused. You’re going to wash them before using anyway. Now that I have an electric stove and can’t tell how hot it is by looking (dials mean nothing I’ve discovered), I decided to replace my old, faithful pressure cooker with an electric model. Went right to Ebay and found a Wolfgang Puck model for less than half of HSN’s $99 Price. Ordered it. Of course I ordered through MyPoints to get my points. Anyway, it came and being the (by background) Jewish mother that I am, I made what I make well. Chicken soup. An hour later the cooker still hadn’t; clicked into cook mode, but the soup seemed cooked. (In fridge waiting for me to skim the fat off before I taste.) I wrote to the company, and got a quick response. I was told to dispose of the defective appliance, and a new one was on it’s way. I don’t remember ever getting such good customer service on Ebay, and I strongly suggest adding the1965flyer to your favorite sellers. He sells a lot of good stuff. I’m eyeing a toaster over/rotisserie.


Remember my telling you about Ristorante Pizza (frozen) that I was reviewing for Bzzagent.com?  I finally got to try a second version.  The first version I tried was the Mozzzarella.  I really liked the taste, and that the topping covered almost to the edge of the crust.  The very thin crust is not to my personal taste.  I’m sue some of you prefer it.  Yesterday I tried the Speciale version.  I didn’t think it had enough cheese, but the pepperoni was good.  I never had a pizza with ham before (this had both), and it worked.  I really didn’t enjoy it as much as the Mozzarella one though.  I may give the Four Cheese version a try.


I had these, or ones similar enough that I can’t see the difference online.  Very comfortable, and I wore them constantly in non-winter weather for several years.  Wore them out.  I wouldn’t mind getting another pair.  I had them in “stone” which I don’t see.  I do have several brown sandals, and perhaps I’ll get the navy.  Trust me, they look better on the foot.  $10 off  coupon today too.   Read the great reviews.  Love Fly Flot.

 Shoes – Shoebuy.com – Free Shipping & Return Shipping


Fly Flot Dana – Blue Nubuck – Free Shipping & Return Shipping – Shoebuy.com

Fly Flot Dana

Fly Flot Gitana

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Have you watched The Chew?   I’m watching because I like Michael Simon, but I’m not sure it’s going to last.  I find Diane Oz totally annoying,  though in all honesty, I can’t say why.  Let me know what you think.  BTW, I tape it so I can fast forward.  It’s supposed to be a food version of The View (ABC is so creative).


I have everything in the house except the squash.  I’m going to get one and make this.  Perhaps add a pinch or so of curry powder or cayenne.

Creamy Butternut Squash and Apple Soup

2 tablespoons olive oil
1 small yellow onion, peeled and chopped
1 clove garlic, chopped
1 Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored and chopped
1 large butternut squash, about 2.5 lbs, peeled, seeded and chopped into 1-inch pieces
2 stems fresh thyme or 1/2 teaspoon dried
1 bay leaf
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
3-4 cups water
2 cups Silk Pure Almond Original
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh ground pepper
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
4 tablespoons toasted sliced almonds, for garnish

Heat a 5-quart soup pot over medium-low heat; add olive oil and heat for 1 minute. Add onions and garlic and cook until softened, about 5 minutes. Add apple, squash, thyme, bay leaf, nutmeg and enough water to cover ingredients. Turn heat to medium high and cook for 15-18 minutes, stirring occasionally, until squash is tender. Stir in Pure Almond and heat through.

Remove from heat, remove thyme stems and bay leaf and allow mixture to cool for 5 minutes. In two to three separate batches, puree soup in a blender or food processor until smooth and creamy. Return to saucepan and reheat. Add nutmeg and lemon juice and season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve in warm bowls garnished with toasted sliced almonds.


 Great Michael’s coupon good till 10/22.


I need to pack, fun weekend.  8^(   Hope you all have a better one.

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Sunday my sister and bil came out from the City, and we went to see Sweeney Todd at a local theater.  Actually the theater is where my daughter took her first acting lessons, umpteen years ago, but I digress.  Anyway, I’d never seen it before on stage, just the movie.  Theater is so much better!  Anyway, if you ever get to see anything with Alicia Irving, who played Mrs Lovett, you’re in for a treat.  She was amazing.  The actor who played Sweeney Todd was mediocre at best.  It was a really good production though.  Worth seeing.  I was never aware before  that there was controversy over the show, and it’s violence, but I grew up reading the red, green, blue, etc books of fairy tales.  This didn’t seem any worse.  I think people forget it’s make-believe, which is the reason they went to begin with.  Oh well.


My friend Nicki gave me this one.  Living Social in Ft Lauderdale is selling $20 Whole Foods vouchers for $10.  I grabbed this one, and sure hope my sister and daughter do too.  Here’s the link.  It’s good countrywide.



 I took a few Salsa Verde recipes and created one I think I’ll really like.  Trying it with chicken tonight.

My Salsa Verde

3 tomatillos

1/3 chopped onion

1 clove garlic

Sprinkle of cumin

1 jalapeno (seeded)

1 Tbs chopped cilantro

sprinkle oregano/marjoram

salt & pepper

Place tomatillos in a nonreactive saucepan with enough water to cover. Bring to a boil. Simmer until tomatillos soften and begin to burst, about 10 minutes.

Drain tomatillos and place in a food processor or blender with onion, garlic, jalapeno peppers, cilantro, salt and pepper. Blend to desired consistency.

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