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Welcome To My Blog

I am so happy that you decided to stop by.  
I hope you enjoy reading my blog as much as I enjoy writing it. I like to keep my blog upbeat and positive.

I am currently restyling my blog.  Please excuse the construction.
Come, relax and enjoy reading stories, recipes, reviews, tips and more.  If there is a positive topic that you would like to suggest, or if you are a business that would like to get in contact with me, please click on the three dashes next to the search button in the upper right corner.  This will open the sidebar where you will find my contact form as well as other fun gadgets.
Have a wonderful day and thanks for stopping by.
Happy Reading!

Recent posts

Get exclusive Swagbuster deals on your favorite stores, offers, and gift cards

Disclosure:  This is a sponsored post.

Running now through December 3rd, the cashback shopping site Swagbucks is running a series of exclusive "Swagbuster" deals that offer increased cash back (in the form of SB points) at stores, when buying gifts cards, and big SB payouts when you discover offers from different companies. You can take all of the points you earn from these deals and redeem them for gift cards from places like Amazon, Target, Walmart, Starbucks, or PayPal cash, helping you extend your holiday budget further! 

The deals change every few hours, and you can keep track of what's available by clicking here. You need a Swagbucks account to take advantage - fortunately it's free and takes less than 30 seconds to sign up. PLUS, if you sign up through me you'll get a bonus 300 SB ($3) if you earn 300 SB before December 1st!

Get Big Cash Back during the Swagbucks Black Friday Sale!

Disclosure:  This is a sponsored post.

The Cashback Shopping site Swagbucks is offering big cash backat over 120 different stores all throughout Black Friday weekend. They're also offering big payouts on a varieties of different deals and offers from companies that would make great gift ideas. Get great deals without waiting in lines or even leaving your home! 

If you're not familiar with Swagbucks, they offer cash back in the form of points when you shop. Then you can turn those points into gift cards to places like Amazon, Starbucks, Target, or PayPal cash. You can also earn points for discovering deals, watching videos, answering surveys and more!  

Click here to take advantage of the cash back, just create your Swagbucks account when prompted (it takes less than 30 seconds) and then you're all set! 

As a special bonus, if you sign up through me you get a 300 SB ($3) bonus when you earn your first 300 SB before December 1st! This site's a great way to extend your shoppi…

#ad Easy Entertaining with HORMEL GATHERINGS® Party Trays

Disclosure: I received free product in exchange for my honest review.
HORMEL GATHERINGS® Party Trays are perfect for every get together with family and friends.  

Hormel makes it easy to entertain with their great selection of fresh cheeses, crackers and meats.  When I am preparing for the holidays or gatherings with family and friends, having products that are convenient, simple and delicious, give me time to concentrate on other tasks.

Look at how pretty the tray looks set up in different areas of our holiday get together.  The meats, cheeses and crackers, all come individually wrapped within the tray to keep them all as fresh as possible.  I simply snipped them open and poured them into their own tray slots.

The HORMEL GATHERINGS® Party Trays come in several different varieties, including Hard Salami and Pepperoni,  Hard Salami and Turkey, and Hormel Gathering Supreme (which also includes olives).  Each tray comes with 2 assortments of cheese, 2 package of fresh Hormel meats and 2 slee…

God Puts People In Your Path

I have always been a firm believer that God puts people in our path for one reason or another.
This morning when I woke up, all I could think about was getting my home in order for the holidays and that I had to run out the door to pick up a few things to tidy up the house with.  I grabbed my keys, some cash and my list, kissed my cat and headed out the door.  I remembered that my husband wanted me to mail out our annual donations, so I grabbed them and put them in my purse.
When I got outside I didn't realize how cold it was.  The wind was really blowing today and I could feel Winter sneaking up on me.   I checked my bird feeder to make sure the birds had food and quickly made my way to my car. When I was driving to the store I placed some Christmas music on.  I like the old traditional songs that I grew up listening to as a child. I find them to be soothing.  I took a quick run over to the post office, mailed the donations and traveled to the store.
When I pulled up to the stor…

The Pre-Black Friday Holiday Sale!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post.

As a pre-Black Friday warm up, Swagbucks is offering big cash backfor shopping online at several of your favorite retailers right now! Just go to this page to see all of the deals available and get the jump on your holiday shopping.

In order to take advantage of the cash back, just create your Swagbucks account when prompted (it takes less than 30 seconds) and then you're all set! Your cash back comes in the form of SB points, which you can redeem for gift cards to places like Amazon, Target, Walmart, Starbucks, or get PayPal cash! 

As a special bonus, if yousign up through me you get a 300 SB ($3) bonus when you earn your first 300 SB before December 1st! This site's a great way to extend your shopping budget, especially around the holidays!

What I Look For In Online Customer Service

Although sales and offers are at their best this time of year, it seems that Customer Service is sometimes at it's worst.  
Part time and temporary employees who are not properly trained can put a real damper on how I do business with a company.  Because the holidays can be so stressful to some people, they look to Customer Services representatives for quick answers and immediate assistance.  Being on hold or on line for long periods of time are not productive for me or many of the people I speak to who dislike it, as well.  Disorganized websites can be a burden and I often will avoid them.
Companies like UserIQ, understand the needs of consumers, like me,  and, they have the tools to monitor user data and engagement which benefits everyone from product management to customer success, marketing to sales, that can keep customers, like me, coming back for more business.
By anticipating the needs and wants of consumers, UserIQ has put together software that is ahead of the game and …

Robots, Machines and Job Loss, a Fresh Perspective from Andrew Charlton

I have read how robots are taking over the workforce. While this is somewhat true. It isn't happening at as fast a pace as you may think.

According to Andrew Charlton, machines aren't taking over human work any faster than they have in past waves of technological change. Currently the annual rate of job loss to automation is less than 0.5 percent of all jobs. This is substantially slower than job losses in agriculture in the 1950s, when many farmers lost their jobs to machines and the 1990s when robots began taking over and displacing factory jobs.
Recently, there has been an increase in new jobs that involve creative thinking, interaction and emotional response. Andrew Carlton says that "Jobs like community, and business services and other specialized professions that rely on uniquely human skills has outpaced the loss of jobs in laboring and administration."
Other changes that have positively impacted human jobs is the improvement of how we do our job. Days o…

Easy to Make Wreath with NJ Lottery Holiday Scratch Offs

Give the Gift of NJ Lottery for the Holidays! This holiday season NJ Lottery has four fun, holiday themed games that you can give to family friends this Holiday season.  These Holiday games make for the perfect gift, stocking stuffer, party favor, etc. for anyone and everyone on your list over the age of 18.  These tickets can be used to create fun, easy DIY projects to give as a decoration, gift, centerpiece, party favor, etc.
 NJ Lottery games include, Holiday Spectacular with prizes up to $200,000, $10,000 Bonus with a chance to win one of 150 prizes of $10,000!  There is also Holiday Sparkles with prizes up to $2,000 and Holiday Lucky Times 10 with a chance to win 10x your prize!  With so many chances to win I will be picking some up for myself as well!

Imagine the joy on the face of your recipients when they receive a beautiful homemade NJ Lottery gift created by you, from NJ Lottery tickets.  

Look at this beautiful wreathe that I made using NJ Lottery tickets.  I used a wire wrea…

Carving a Turkey with an Electric Knife

I have been carving turkeys and hams with an electric knife for over 20 years.  For me, it is the norm.  However,  many people tell me they use carving knives.   Whichever way you carve your turkey, here is a tip that will make carving it much easier.

First, let me just state that you should never carve your turkey straight out of the oven.  You have to let it sit for at least 20 minutes to soak in all of those delicious juices. 

First thing you want to do when carving your turkey is to remove each breast.  You do this by first cutting along the leg and breast.  

This will give you more room to work.  Once you have done that, pull the legs gently away without removing them.  You then want to cut along the top spine of the turkey and then across the side and take the breast out. 

 Honestly, once you cut along the spine, the breast will usually be very easy to remove.  You will have to cut along the spine for each breast side.
After removing the breast,  just cut it into uniform slices…

Tips for a Perfect Turkey

Many of you will be making turkey dinners for Thanksgiving and some of you will be doing it for the first time.  Here are some tips to help you make the perfect turkey.
You may not know this, but frozen turkeys can take up to a week to thaw.  There are two methods that you can use to thaw your turkey.
The first is cold water thawing.  

Always keep the turkey wrapped in its original plastic for this procedure.  You want to place the bird breast down and cover it completely with cold water.  Every 1/2 hour rotate the turkey.  It will take 30 minutes per pound to completely thaw your turkey.
The other method is refrigerator thawing.  In this case you want to place the turkey breast up and keep it in its original wrapper.  Make sure your refrigerator temperature is no higher than 40 degrees F.  You will need at least 1 day per 4 lbs of turkey, so a 20 lb. turkey will take 5 days to defrost.  After thawing the turkey completely, be sure to cook it within 4 days.

Not sure how long to thaw …

The November Swag Code Extravaganza (US)

Swagbucks is celebrating Thanksgiving early with a Swag Code Extravaganza! It all happens on Wednesday, November 15th beginning at 7AM PT/10AM ET. 6 Swag Codes worth a total of 40 SB The codes will be all over Swagbucks so be on the lookout!

Sign up here to grab as many Swag Codes as you can and get your first gift card even faster!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post.

Top 10 Cookie Fails and How to Avoid Them

I don't know about you, but I make dozens of cookies for the holidays..  Here are some tips to help ensure that you make the best cookies possible.  I have scoured the internet for some of the best tips I could find from some of the top baking sites.  I hope you find them useful.

1. Tough Cookies
If your cookies are tough you are probably over-mixing them.  Concentrate on mixing or kneading your cookie dough until the ingredients are combined.  Another tip is to use pastry flour instead of all purpose.  Pastry flour is lighter and has less protein in it.  The end result is less gluten and softer cookies.  You may also want to try adding 1/4 cup extra butter or sugar.  Those are the 2 ingredients that make your cookies soft.

2. Spreading Cookies
Pay attention to recipes and only make your cookies the size that is specified in the recipe.  If you use too much of your batter, it will cause the cookies to lose shape and spread out too much.  If you find your cookies doing this, try mak…