Products I Use In My Hair

I use the shimmering lights shampoo (on the left) once a week and my two favorite conditioners are the Aussie 2 Minute Miracle or the Pantene Masque.  Both are really good at putting moisture back in to your hair.

When I get out of the shower, I put on a turbie twist to get out as much moisture as possible.  Then I put in about a tsp o fthe Paul Mitchell Leave in Conditioner with 1/2 tsp of the argon oil.  I put in a large egg sized ball of mousse (not too much or it will weight your hair down) and to  help get some texture at the roots around the crown, I put a few spritzs of the Beyond the Zone Super Sexy spray.

How to Carve Your Turkey

Most people slice the turkey down the side.  This method shows you how to get out the whole breast in one piece so you have a beautiful chunk of meat to slice up.

Get whoever carves the turkey in your house to watch this video and try this method at Christmas.

Elle's Embarrasingly Easy Casserole

1 broccoli, chopped and slightly microwaved to still be crisp
1 cauliflower, chopped and slightly micrwaved to still be crisp
1 can cream of mushroom soup
1 1/2 C Grated Cheese
6 Slices Cheese (or enough to cover casserole dish)
Bread Crumbs
Butter or Margarine

Mix together broccoli, cauliflower, soup and 1/2 C grated cheese.  Put in a casserole dish (9 x 12 or 2 1/2 Qt).  Lay down sliced cheese on top followed by 1 C grated cheese.  Cover with bread crumbs and then dot with margarine.  Can be prepared ahead and put in the fridge at this point for the next evening.

Preheat oven to 375F and cook for 30 minutes or till hot and bubbly.

The Appearance of Youthful Dewy Skin

As we age, our skin loses that dewy glow.  This is my secret for how I get that youthful glow to my complexion.  I have tried this with all different foundations and it works for all of them (although I still love my Revlon 24 Hour Colorstay best).

You can see the 'glow' in the product but, it is very subtle when you blend it in with your foundation.

How to add depth and dimension to your hair - for blondes, brunettes and red heads

This Shimmering Lights Shampoo says that it is for brunettes and red heads.  I am a blonde and I love it!

This is a temporary shampoo and it is so subtle that you don't have to be scared by how vivid the color of this product is.  I promise, it doesn't show up in your hair like that.

I use it at least once a week and love it.  The only time that I have noticed my hair taking on a red hue was when I used it every time I shampooed for almost a month.  It is so gradual that I didn't realize my hair had a slight strawberry tint until a girlfriend said something.  Then I went back to using once or twice a week and, my hair has it's usual blonde shade but, with a bit of depth.  If you are a red head or brunette, then this shampoo will add depth and dimension for you as well.

I have ghosts in my yard!

We have a freeze warning issued for tonight.

Plants that handle 120F summers do not like the cold....similar to me!
Does anyone else have to cover their plants when there are freeze warnings?

Smashbox Primer is $36 and the Dupe is $6

Smashbox Primer 1 oz. is $36

Monostat Chafing Relief Soothing Care Powder Gel 1.5 oz is $6

Their ingredients are almost identical (not sure what all those non-essential ingredients are in the Smashbox Primer)

They are virtually identical in the feel and performance.

You do the math.

Our back yard pictures

I was asked for pictures of our pool.  Until we get around to making a video of our backyard, here are some pictures that hopefully capture it:

Here's What We Did Today

Ozzy supervising the tree decorating

Do you think we could get any more ornaments on the tree?

Mark's handy work.  Poor Frosty.

Christmas is coming!

I spent this afternoon blocking (getting wet and stretching out to dry) some of the many knit and crocheted scarves that I have been working on.  I am planning on doing a video demonstrating a couple of these stitches.

Close up to show you the fun texture.  These were just straight stocking stitch (knit every row) 
If you are a knitter and interested in a GREAT place to buy yarn over the internet, check out Smiley's.  I believe they have a minimum $50 order (which I always easily surpass).  Do not blame me for turning you on this place! :-)

The Epley Maneuver

If you are dizzy or off balance, it may be as simple as needing to do this maneuver to get the follicles back through your ear canal so they can reattach and you can regain your equilibrium.

There are 4 positions (note the angles in the diagram below):

1) Sitting up, turn your head to one side and lay back with a pillow far down under your neck

2) With your head held to that side and your head tilted slight back, hold that position for 30 to 40 seconds

3) Turn your head to the other side and tile your head slightly back.  Hold that position for 30 to 40 seconds

4) Turn your nose down towards the bed/floor.  Hold that position for 30 to 40 seconds

Slowly sit up and hold that for 30 seconds.  Repeat for the other ear, reversing the sides.

I use this procedure several times a year when I get allergies (water on the ears) and notice I am off balance or just don't feel right.  It is amazing how many people suffer from this.  I have many friends who were going for MRI's etc thinking it was a serious problem and they tried this, and it fixed it!  I hope that this helps someone out there.

Thai Chicken Pizza

This is our favorite pizza!  It is so easy and yet tastes gourmet.  Enjoy!

Boboli thin or regular crust
Annie Chun's Peanut Sauce (mix in ¼ tsp ginger -- optional)
Diced chicken (we use "Just Chicken" from the refrigerated section at Trader Joe's and chop up the strips)
Grated Mozzarella Cheese

Peanuts, chopped
Green onions, diced
Bean sprouts
Cilantro, chopped
Carrot, julienned

Spread peanut sauce on crust, top with chicken and then mozzarella
Bake at 450F for 11 minutes

Sprinkle toppings over crust and bake 2 minutes to heat.

This is the peelers that Mark showed in the video:

Here are three things for when you are going through tough times:
  • Write down your goal/where you want to be
  • Remember, this is shaping your character and building you into an even better person
  • Think what a great story this will make of the journey you had to get there!

Every woman should watch this video

 I highly recommend trying the following:
  • respond with only "thank you" to any compliments
  • make a list of your good traits - read it and reread it
  • have someone you trust make a list of your good traits for you.  Keep it and reread it.
  • talk to women you trust and see if they also feel the same way
Awareness is the first step to change.  You are fabulous and deserve to know that about yourself.



Believe In Yourself

Believe in yourself
Success begins with a person’s will.
It’s all a state of mind.
Life’s battles do not always go to the stronger or faster person.

Sooner or later, the person who wins is the one who thinks he can.

Who knew I would ever be on the internet looking like this!!!

This little product is called the Turbie Twist and is a great little invention to help save your hair from drying out, help lower your energy bill and lower the amount of heat.  If you live in HOT Arizona, that is a beautiful thing!

Kindle Comparison

I love my kindles.  Yes, that is plural.  I have the original Kindle and 2 of the tablets.  To watch my review, go to the video where  I compare the 3 Kindles and review the pros and cons of each.  Which kindle is right for you depends on your needs.

Regular Kindle
EXCELLENT for reading books
Works in the sunshine even with glasses
Light and tiny as it isn't backlit
With the wi-fi off, the battery lasts for 4 weeks

With no light, you can't read it in the dark in bed at night
Not good for doing emails or surfing the web

Kindle-Fire 3G
You can get emails, surf the web and play games
Lit up so you can read at night
Affordable tablet vs competition

Doesn't work well outside in the sunlight and especially with sunglasses
A bit heavier/bulkier
Much shorter battery life than the regular kindle

Check out the Amazon website where they do a side-by-side comparison on all of the Kindles 


Book Recommendations

It is so difficult to recommend a 'good book'.  Not because I have any shortage of books that I think are good but, because a 'good book' is so subjective and I don't know what YOU will think is good.  For myself, the way I find out if I will like what someone else describes as a "good book" is to ask them to list some of their favorite books.  If I don't agree with at least a few of them, then we probably like different types of books.  I like a variety of books but mainly the books that make up my "best of" list consist of the following:

Good literary fiction, probably set in a foreign country and/or a little heavy.  I do occasionally enjoy a good beach-read/lighter book or a non-fiction book.

If you read any of these, please let me know what you think of them.  If you find you have similar taste, please feel free to recommend any of your 'good books' to me :-)

Some of the books I consider "best of" or "must reads" are:

Literary Fiction

  • The Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra

This is my latest book that I loved, loved, loved so I am going to type a bit about it.  This is the type of book that is difficult to stop myself from going up to complete strangers and insisting that they have to read it.  There are two things you need to be aware of with this book:
1.  Keep track of the year!  If you are reading this book on the Kindle, the date is in teeny tiny letters at the beginning of each chapter.
2.  There aren't many characters but, the unique way they are introduced can make them confusing so, here is a character list:
Akhmed -a failed physician
Ula - his bed-ridden wife
Dokka - Father of Havaa. Finger-less arborist.
Havaa - Eight year old daughter
Khassan - Father, writer.
Ramzan - Informant son
Sonja - Doctor and sister of Natasha
Natasha - Sister to Sonja
Deshi - Nurse and sister to Maali
Maali - Nurse and sister to Deshi

  • Cutting for Stone by Abraham Verghese
  • Sense of an Ending by Julian Barnes - the less you know about this book the better.  Just read it :-)
  • Any Khaled Hosseini book:  A Thousand Splendid Suns, The Kite Runner, And The Mountains Echoed
  • Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts
  • Little Bee by Chris Cleave
  • Someone Knows My Name by Lawrence Hill
  • The Reader by Bernard Schlink
  • Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen
  • Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrandt
  • An Embarrassment of Mangoes by Ann Vanderhoof
Lighter Books

  • Me Before You by JoJo Moyes - ok, I guess 'lighter' is all relative as this does have some heavy topics but, I loved the humor in this book
  • The Lost Husband by Katherine Center

Young Adult

  • The Book Thief by Markus Zuzak
  • Divergent by Veronica Roth
  • Unwind by Neal Shusterman