Showing posts from February, 2012

Book Review: Taft 2012

Taft 2012: A Novel by Jason Heller
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

No wonder Americans had devolved into such a petty, sarcastic lot. They no longer had to look each other in the eye.

I don't know much about Taft's presidency, but this book comes at a great time in our history. Can you imagine it? A Republican with Progressive values? My, how the party has changed.

The book does go into a little history of the time so you can understand where and when Taft is coming from and how he relates to existing a century later. And how confused we are!

Heller writes a few speeches for Taft that actually resonated with me. Chapter 29 is probably my favorite:

"If there is a problem with America today--as I see it--it is that we look for self-worth in consumption, rather than in the pursuit of personal achievement. I may seem a hypocrite for pointing out such a finger, for I have obviously engaged in quite a bit of overconsumption myself! Nonetheless, it is true. We cannot fill the void in…

Wordless Wednesday: Batting Practice


Movie Review: Real Steel

This past weekend we watched Real Steel on vudu.

We argued over this film. I've wanted to see it since it debuted (honestly, only because of Hugh Jackman, plain and simple). My daughter wasn't all that into it -- it's boxing, not hockey, softball, basketball, or soccer, know what I mean? And the Hunk wasn't all that thrilled about it because it was clearly a "family film" and likely sappy and lame. And he didn't want to watch me drool over Hugh for two hours.

30 minutes in and we were all hooked! At the end I wanted to watch it again and we all agreed that it's a movie worth owning.

This is a story about a man (Charlie Kenton played by Hugh Jackman) growing up and out of a selfish self-centered, short-sighted jackass and finding himself to be something more lovable. It's also about a street-smart, strong-willed child who knows what's best for his father, and a robot with a secret. But Max (Dakota's character) doesn't come across as a d…

Pumped Up Weird

I don't usually watch daytime TV, but I'm working from home today. I finally needed some background noise and I got sucked into Ellen. How cute are they???

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Chocolate Cake for a Flat Belly

No, really, at least according to Dr. Oz. I don't have a trifle pan, but this works well on a plate too, considering how fast it disappeared!

5-Layer Flat Belly Dessert
Recipe by Gail Simmons
This was featured on the Dr. Oz show. We actually skipped the flax and walnuts mixture when I made it, but I will add it the next time. We thought it would last a few days, but my teenage son ate about half of it when he got home. I only got one slice! The only one who didn't like it was my daughter, apparently she doesn't like coconut!

Nice to know that I can replace egg and oil with Greek yogurt (or probably any yogurt).

Rating: ****** Will definitely make again Prep time: 15 minutes
Cook time: 30 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes
Yield: 12 servings give or take
1 boxdevil's food cake mix1 cupnonfat Greek yogurt1 cupwater4 cupsfat-free ricotta1 cupcoconut milk, well stirred1 cupshredded, toasted sweetened coconut4 tablespoonsagave syrup1/2 cuptoasted oats1/2 cup ground…

Read "Princess of Mars" Before the Martians Attack

With John Carter (by Edgar Rice Burroughs, you know, the Tarzan guy) coming out soon, I got on Project Gutenburg and found the first 5 books for free (which can also be bought online for your Kindle - The John Carter of Mars Collection (3 books) - but my Nook reads epubs, so I opted to go the free route rather than pay, because, you know B&N offers a similar collection too).

By the way, please keep in mind that this series was written at the turn of the 20th century and is set just after the Civil War.
Free Downloads:
Princess of Mars also as an audiobookThe Gods of MarsWarlord of MarsThuvia, Maid of MarsChessmen of Mars I haven't been able to find books 6-11 for free, but I will keep looking. In the meantime, you can read it online, with illustrations at

A little digging around the interwebz helped me find the rest of the series. They are zip,text, and HTML versions at Project Gutenberg Australia. I link to the text versions here.

The Master Mind of MarsA Fighti…

Recipe: Whole Wheat Corn Bread

Modified from a classic cornbread recipe. It's not as bright yellow as traditional corn bread because of the whole wheat flour, but it's just as tasty with butter and honey.  Whole Wheat Corn Bread Recipe by Annette Holland

Prep time: 5 minutes Cook time: 25 minutes
Total time: 30 minutes
Yield: 8-12 servings
2/3 cupwhole wheat flour1/3 cupall purpose flour1 cupyellow corn meal1 tablespoonbaking powder1/4 cupsugar in the raw1 teaspoonsalt1 cupmilk1egg1/3 cupolive oil or unsalted butter (melted)Cooking Directions
Preheat oven to 400 F and grease an 8x8 pan. Set aside. Mix all wet ingredients together. Mix all dry ingredients together. Mix all ingredients together until moist. Batter will be lumpy. Pour into greased pan and bake for 25-30 minutes. Corn bread is done when a knife or toothpick stuck in the center comes out clean. *Recipe formatted using Recipe SEO
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Twogether is WAY Better

As mentioned in my previous post, there's a lot going on at Knott's Berry Farm this month. I am so glad I finally went!

Check out the rest of my photos

*Disclosure - This post sponsored by Gigasavvy and Knott's. I received admission for myself and 2 guests to attend this event.
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