Thursday, August 31, 2017

Recipe: Broccoli and Cauliflower Salad

I made a different version of this a while back and wanted to try it with other ingredients, so here's my recipe. 

You'll need

3 large broccoli florets
1 large cauliflower floret
1 tomato, chopped
1 avocado, chopped
1 green onion, chopped
roasted sunflower seeds


3 TBSP of your favorite salad dressing
2 TBSP Freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 tsp. mayonnaise

Mix dressing ingredients in a small bowl and set aside. 

Chop all ingredients into bite size pieces and add to a large bowl. Pour dressing over salad and toss well. Let sit in the fridge for an hour before serving. Sprinkle a TBSP of sunflower seeds over salad right before serving. 

My daughter came over the day I made this and she loved it. It's one of my favorite things to make for lunch now because you can add so many different ingredients to it to make it how you like. And in case anyone was wondering, I used my favorite cilantro lime salad dressing in the dressing for this. 

Does this sound like something you would try?

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Review: BirchBox- August

I decided to sign up for a Birchbox subscription box. It's only $10 a month and this month's box came with 5 products. 

In this box was...

Benefit Cosmetics Gimme Brow Volumizing Fiber Gel for eyebrows

GlamGlow Thirstymud Hydrating Treatment for your face

Marcelle City Multi-Protection Tinted Cream with SPF 25

Number 4 Super Comb Prep & Protect Leave in Conditioner

Oribe Gold Lust Dry Shampoo

All of these products are new to me so I was exited to start trying them out. I don't usually do much with my eyebrows (shocking, I know) and I've never plucked them (gasp!) so the fiber gel for eyebrows isn't something that I would normally buy but I did use a little of it and it looked fine. It wasn't too thick or weird looking, it just made my eyebrows look a little darker.

I used a little of the tinted cream and well as the hydrating treatment for your face and both are nice smelling products. The tinted cream really didn't have much of a tint to it but I appreciate the SPF 25 and the hydrating treatment left my face feeling soft.

I love leave in conditioners since my hair is long, it's nice to find different things to try to keep the tangles at bay.

The dry shampoo is another that left a fine white powder residue in my hair. I have dark brown hair so I really don't want to look like I've played in the flour or put baby powder in my hair so I didn't care for that.

This is my second BirchBox and over all I liked most of the products.

Does this sound like a subscription box you would sign up for?

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Review: No Ifs, Ands, or Bear's About It by Celia Kyle

Book description

The first day of Mia’s new life in Grayslake, Georgia is not going as planned.

The house her grandfather left her looks ready to crumble, boxes cover every inch of the floor and—oh—there’s a bear cub in her pantry. It gets worse when the cub’s uncle comes by and busts out his fur and claws while on her front porch. Then it gets loads better because suddenly there’s a hot hunk of badge-wearing werebear on her lawn ready to rescue her. Yum. Of course, he has to ruin things by trying to take the cub out of her hands. Ha! The cub is hers… No ifs, ands, or bears about it.

Werebear Ty can’t seem to get the curvaceous, delectable Mia to understand that, even if she is one-quarter werebear, she isn’t keeping the cub. Ty is the Grayslake Itan, the clan’s leader, and the little werebear is going home with him… Unless it isn’t. It’s her smile. If she’d stop smiling and being gorgeous, his inner-bear would support him and Ty would get his way. But the beast wants to make their woman happy, so it’s perfectly content to let her do as she pleases. Then things change. Threats arise, danger comes close, and Ty demands she return to his den. No ifs, ands, or mates about that.

My review

This is the first book in the Grayslake series and I loved it. It's starts right off with Mia finding a bear cub in her pantry. Next thing she knows there's a drunk, angry shifter at her door demanding she give him the cub. But Mia knows that the cub is scared of this guy and right before things get really bad the police show up and cart this crazy guy off. Mia is part werebear and after looking after the cub for a little while she plans on keeping the cub but Ty, the clan leader isn't about to let her keep the cub. He thinks it'll just be that easy, he'll say no and she'll just do what he says but things are never that easy. 

Mia inherited her grandfather's home when he passed away, she knew about shifters since she is part werebear even if she wasn't able to shift. So she knows that there are shifters where she now lives but that doesn't make things easier for her when Ty wants her and the cub to come back to his home. 

I really liked Ty's brothers and some of the other werebears. Because Ty is the clan leader he's expected to mate with another werebear who can give him cubs that can shift. But because Mia is only part werebear and can't shift, it brings up problems for their relationship even if he and his bear want her because of what the clan expects from him. 

I really liked their romance, their relationship and the drunk uncle's story line as it unfolds. I really liked that Mia was so taken with the adorable werebear cub and fought so hard to keep him safe. It was also fun to see how werebear hierarchy and politics in the group worked. I really like the world that this author has built and I'm looking forward to reading more of this series. 

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. 

Monday, August 28, 2017

Happy Raturday!

*Picture courtesy of Cindy Rogers*

"Human, let go of my cupcake. Don't make me bite you."

*Picture courtesy of Cindy Rogers*

"I went shopping and got lots of treats."

*Picture courtesy of*

"These check out lines are always so long!"

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Review: How To Tame A Beast In Seven Days by Kerrelyn Sparks

Book Description

From the brilliant imagination of Kerrelyn Sparks comes a bold new fantasy romance series in which passion and magic collide. Behold the Embraced...

As one of the Embraced—one born with magical powers—the beautiful, innocent Luciana escaped certain death after her father hid her away on the Isle of Moon. Now, nineteen years later, her father has returned with a frightening request. He will be executed unless Luciana returns to the mainland and marries a man feared throughout the land: a terrifying brute known as the Beast.

Luciana accepts her fate and agrees to wed the Beast—Lord Leo—in order to save her father. Soon she learns that her betrothed is also one of the Embraced. With the ability to wield lightning, Leo’s immense power strikes fear into the hearts of men. . .and his mere touch can put an end to a woman’s life. But Luciana cannot deny the passion that burns between them. How can she resist the man who scorches her soul and makes her feel intoxicated with desire—even if surrendering to him could destroy them both?

My Review

Luciana spent her childhood on the Isle of Moon where she's been hidden away so no one would know she was a twin. But now she has a choice to make, take her sister's place and marry a man she doesn't know or let her father die for not doing as he's been ordered to do. 

Leo is one of the embraced. He'd been born with the power to wield lightning and most people are rightly terrified of him. 

Dragons also make an appearance in this book as well as a dog shifter and while the dragons aren't nice or cuddly, they are fierce and scary. 

I found this book to be a bit on the boring side and a lot long winded. Things were just very slow to progress and they didn't even officially meet until almost half way through the book. 

Things did pick up towards the end, I loved Leo because he wasn't at all what most people thought he was. I was wondering how they were going to get around the fact that he can't touch anyone without maybe hurting or killing them because lightning could shoot from his fingertips at any given moment but I really liked how they got around that. 

The secrets that Luciana is keeping finally start to come out and we get to see who the assassins are. Of course there are some twists along the way and you already know I love those. Now I don't usually read historicals and while the setting, clothes and the way women are treated really make this feel like a historical, I liked it because of the shifters, witches, ghosts, and paranormal aspects of the Embraced. 

So while this might not be the best book I've read this month it was definitely worth the read and I did enjoy it once things started to pick up. 

I give this book 3 out of 5 stars. 

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Favorite Video of the Week

I don't know if most of you are Linkin Park fans but after Chester Bennington, the lead singer of Linkin Park, killed himself last month and it got a lot of people thinking about the lyrics of most of his songs. There's so much pain in most of them and this song which is one of his last new songs, really hit home with a lot of people. Anyone who has suffered with depression probably understands the words to this song very well. I know it hit home for me the first time I heard it because I've been in that dark place more times than I like to admit. I feel really sad that he saw suicide as his only way to get rid of the pain he was in. RIP Chester

Friday, August 25, 2017

Freebie Friday!

Welcome to another edition of Freebie Friday, where I tell you what free samples and full sized products I received in the mail and how you can get them too. Someone asked me why I do a 'Freebie Friday" each week, so I'll tell you.

A while back I listed all the free samples and wins that I had received that previous year and so many people didn't believe that I could have gotten so many free things. So I decided to prove it by taking a picture every week and sharing the sites that I found the links to the freebies at. So now you too can get great free samples coming to your mailbox each week.

  You can find links to great samples at Hey It's Free and Freebie Shark.

This week I received:

Tummy Zen anacid tablets
Orbit White Gum
Slimfast Smoothie Mix

Did you receive any freebies this week?

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Review: Target Beauty Box- August

This box was only $7 this month but I can tell you from experience that if bought separately, this would have been quite a bit more. Not a bad value.  Each month Target releases a new Target Beauty Box but supplies are limited and it's first come first serve until they run out. These boxes go fast so I try to grab one as soon as I see it being talked about on Twitter or fb.

This box contained: 

Dove Clear Finish Dry Spray Deodorant – 3.8 oz
SpaLife Nourishing Facial Mask – 1 ct
Herbal Essences Argan Oil Shampoo – 1.4 oz
up & up Facial Wipes – 25 ct 
Biore Deep Cleansing Pore Strips -1 ct 
Garnier Clearly Brighter Daily Scrub – 1oz

I really like getting the little trial size bottles of things like shampoo and make up remover to try out. I've found a few things that I've bought after getting a sample of it. But the full size Dove deodorant, Make Up Removing Towelettes and Face Mask really made this box worth getting. The Dove Spray Deodorant all by itself is $5 - $6 in the stores. 

The shampoo smelled good and worked great, the orange face mask smelled great and made my face feel soft, the make up remover towelettes worked great at getting even mascara off, the Biore pore strip is something I already use so I loved getting that and the Garnier facial cleanser worked great and didn't irritate my face. This was a great box. 

Have you been able to get one of these boxes? 

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Review: The Texas Ranger by Diana Palmer

Book description

When Texas Ranger Marc Brannon returns to the line of duty, a high‐profile murder mystery pits him against a vibrant—and vulnerable—junior investigator from his past. Years ago, Josette Langley made no secret of the fact that she was desperately in love with the rugged lawman, and despite their differences, the rough‐hewn loner became drawn to the innocent young woman. Yet Marc and Josette parted on explosive terms when she made a shocking accusation that shattered both their lives.

Now they're back together again.... And this time, a lot more than just their hearts is at stake. The woman Marc once cherished is being targeted by a corrupt political figure who will stop at nothing to bury the truth. Can Marc and Josette set aside their stormy discord and see justice served—or will they both be caught in the crossfire?

My review

Before I get started on my review I wanted to let you know that the copy I'm reviewing is a copy I've had for years. It has a different cover than the one I found on Amazon and so I don't know if my edition and the newest edition are exactly the same. Anyway, I thought I might review some of the older books on my bookshelves that I've read years ago but really liked. I first read this book many years ago so a re-read was in order. This is one of my favorite authors for cowboy romance and I have a lot of her books. 

Sergeant Marc Brannon was working on a case and trying to tie a mob boss into a murder and finally get the guy in prison and lock him away. When he finds out he'll be working with Josette, he's not happy about it but deals with it. They parted on bad terms 2 years earlier but he's moved on, at least he thinks he has. 

Josette Langley just happens to get sent on the same murder case that Marc is working on. Their first meeting after a 2 year absence wasn't something she was looking forward to but she wasn't the soft spoken girl that Marc knew before. This Josette bites back and isn't about to let anyone walk all over her again. 

While these two used to be friends, they're little more than enemies right now. And even though Josette is still affected by Marc and he is as well by her, there's a lot of baggage between them. Marc hurt her emotionally and physically albeit accidentally because he didn't believe her. She has every right not to like or trust him and he kept trying to get a rise out of her or make her lose her cool. That part made me mad because Marc came off like a jackass sometimes. If he had just apologizes a lot sooner, I think I would have liked him a bit more than I did for the first half of the book. 

As they look into the murder and who could have motive to kill him, it becomes very apparent that someone doesn't like all the questions being asked. Josette and Marc become targets of someone who would rather this case be quietly pushed under a rug. But while they're working together trying to solve this murder, they start getting closer and the old feelings pop up for both of them...the good ones and the bad ones. 

I really liked seeing them move on from the past and start to get close again. The big reveal about who was targeting them and who was behind the murder was a great twist. I had a feeling that's who it would be but it was nice to see that I was right. If you're not paying close attention to the small details, you'll miss who it is until they figure it out and reveal it. 

This was a great murder mystery and a great romance. The pace of the story was great and kept me reading, wanting to know more and hoping they would find out some other juicy tidbit of information. 

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. 

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Recipe: Avocado Cauliflower Toast

I saw this recipe floating around FB and I followed the link back to the site where they had the recipe and you can find that original recipe here

So this recipe was pretty simple but like with most recipes, I changed it to suit my taste. 

What you'll need:

2 cauliflower florets
2 eggs, divided
1/2 an avocado 
1 tsp. lemon juice
pinch of salt
pepper to taste
2 TBSP oil
1 Tsp. butter
pinch of season salt
1 tsp. mayonnaise

What to do: 

Grate the cauliflower add one egg, a pinch of salt, season salt, and pepper. Stir until mixed well. 

Heat oil and butter in a pan and add cauliflower mixture to hot pan. Shape into thin patty. Fry on first side for about 4 minutes or until golden brown. Flip and fry for 4 more minutes. 

In a small bowl add avocado, lemon juice, pinch of salt and mayo. Mash avocado and mix well. 

When cauliflower is done, fry 1 egg in the hot pan. 

Add avocado mixture on top of cauliflower patty and fried egg on top of avocado. 

It was an interesting idea but you have to make sure to season that cauliflower really good other wise it's pretty bland. It was good enough that I'll probably make it again. 

Monday, August 21, 2017

Happy Raturday!

*Photo courtesy of **

"Let's talk about the world." 

*Photo courtesy of **

*Photo courtesy of *Me- Mary Kirkland*

"I love my duckie so much, I sleep with him."

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Review: Degustabox- August

DegustaBox is a monthly subscription box filled with food and drink products. The price for the box is $19.99 a month.  

You do not get to pick any of the products you get, it's a surprise each month. But they say each box contains 10-15 items and each box is worth at least $30. I like trying boxes like this because they usually contain products that I've never tried or haven't seen before. 

What was in the box? 

Nature’s Bakery Fig Bar
Welch’s Fruit Rolls
SunSpire Milk Chocolate SunDrops
Dole Peaches in Strawberry Gel (Kinda like jello)
Goya Golden Maria Sandwich Cookies
Sharwood’s Korma
Pasta Chips in Rosemary Flavor
Vintage Italia Pasta Bow Ties in Meatball Parm
Turkey Perky Jerky in Tasty Teriyaki
Goya Tostones Chips
Hummustir Hummus (Mediterranean Style)
Nuttzo 2go

So far the only thing I didn't like was the hummus. I made chicken thighs one night and we tried the Korma sauce and it was just ok for me. Ken and I both started opening packages right away and sampling everything. He liked the meatball parm chips while I liked the rosemary and the twice fried plantains. The jerky was really good too and even Falcor had a bite of that and seemed to enjoy it.

If you don't live in the US, they now have a Great Britain Website. Now here's a treat for you. If this box looks like something you'd like, you can use code MARYK-ACB and get your first box half off. That's a big box of food for only $10! and you can cancel anytime. So if you're interested, go to the DegustaBox site and sign up and don't forget to use my code to get your first box for just $10. 

I've never had hummus before so I was excited to try this. When I opened it, there were several packets that you squeezed into the tub and mixed. It even came with a wooden spoon for mixing.

This is what it looked like after it was mixed. Reminded me of glue and I didn't care for the taste. Ken said he plans on getting another flavor of hummus for us to try but even the texture of this was gritty and not my favorite experience. It looks like something I would patch holes in walls with, not eat. lol So this turned out to be something that we really didn't like. 

I also made the Korma simmering sauce with some chicken, steamed rice and sauteed broccoli. I don't eat rice often but I had a little that night. For me and Ken too this sauce was just alright. it wasn't good on the rice and I ended up not eating most of that but on the chicken it was just alright. Not something that I would buy again. 

Have you tried any of these products?

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Favorite Video of the Week

I was searching for more music to add to my youtube playlist and stumbled across this song. They remind me a little of Judas Priest or some of the other metal bands back in the 80's. This guy can hold a note too, wow. He has a great voice and can sure reach some of those high notes.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Freebie Friday!

Welcome to another edition of Freebie Friday, where I tell you what free samples and full sized products I received in the mail and how you can get them too. Someone asked me why I do a 'Freebie Friday" each week, so I'll tell you.

A while back I listed all the free samples and wins that I had received that previous year and so many people didn't believe that I could have gotten so many free things. So I decided to prove it by taking a picture every week and sharing the sites that I found the links to the freebies at. So now you too can get great free samples coming to your mailbox each week.

  You can find links to great samples at Hey It's Free and Freebie Shark.

This week I received:

Bottle of Honey
1 Envelope of Carnation Essentials
2 books and bookmarks from Heidi Betts from a contest on her blog
$5 Amazon gift card from Crowdtap

Did you receive any freebies this week?

Thursday, August 17, 2017

Review: Maple Holistics Honey

*Product description from their website.*

Maple Holistics Organic Honey takes one of natures sweetest and most beneficial foods and delivers it to you in a pure, high quality package. Our 100% pure, organic and raw honey is prepared with the best processing methodologies in order to guarantee authenticity and nutritional value. Unlike other honeys which are filtered in order to increase clarity, which can compromise the honey, Maple Holistics Organic Honey is geographically sourced from Brazil and never undergoes any sort of filtering process.

My Review

I haven't tasted honey in about 15 years. People who know me know that I have a 'thing' about bee's and since honey is essentially bee vomit *as one of my friends pointed out*  I don't typically touch the stuff. But I had a Honey Bun not too long ago as well as a granola bar that had honey in it and I thought both were quite good. So when I was asked if I'd be interested in reviewing a bottle of honey, I figured, why not. 

The first thing I tried the honey in was my tea and I only used a little bit, maybe a teaspoon but it was just enough to sweeten my tea the right amount. Now Ken happens to love honey and the first thing he did was make a peanut butter and honey sandwich. I'd never heard of this before but he said that he used to have them when he was a kid and I even had a bite of it. It's sweet and I can understand why he likes it since he likes peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. It's sweet and goes good with peanut butter. 

This is a squeeze bottle so it's really easy to get the honey out and it's not messy at all. Ken and I are both happy with the quality and taste of this honey and I'll probably use it a little more often now that I have a bottle of it. 

I give this 4 out of 5 stars.

Disclosure: I was given a free product in exchange for a review but all thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Favorite Picture of the Week

Last month my brother and sister in law came for a visit. They brought their dog, Moose with them. They stayed with my dad while they were here and Moose stayed over there while my brother and his wife were at my house but they brought Moose over so I could see him before they left. Ken held Falcor and they stared each other down for a few minutes. lol Now I understand why they call him Moose...he's huge.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Review: Roland Mediterranean Flavored Quinoa

We'd had two different flavored Quinoa dishes before trying this one and it was a tie because one was really good and one was really bad. So Ken found this one in the store and bought it for us to try. I have to say that when I tore this envelope open and smelled it, I wasn't pleased. It smelled like dirt and something gross. But I cooked it and tasted it...and wouldn't you know it was so darn good. I couldn't even believe it. With the smell from those spices coming off it, I really thought it was gonna taste bad but it was so good and this little envelope made a lot. 

My brother had just come for a visit after vacationing in Alaska and he brought us one of the Yellowfin Tuna's that he caught and shipped back to his home in one of those frozen styrofoam cartons. He also brought us some homemade smoked salmon that he caught and smoked in Alaska. So I baked the tuna and cooked the Quinoa for Ken and I and we had it for lunch. 

Some of the skin came off during cooking but who cares, I toss that anyway. lol But it was really good. I've had canned tunafish and I've had smoked tuna but I've never had or made baked tuna and it was quite good. 

So if you're looking to try a good tasting quinoa, I'd give this one a try. The spices aren't over powering taste wise and it was extremely easy to make. Just heat the water, add the quinoa, cover and cook for 15 minutes. 

Have you tried Quinoa?

Monday, August 14, 2017

Happy Raturday!

*Photo courtesy of *@Poppy'sMischief*

"I'm watching you and I know where my stash of food is, so don't get any ideas."

*Photo courtesy of **

*Photo courtesy of **

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Makeup Hack: Using Anti-Chafing Gel as a Foundation Primer

Who taught you ladies how to put on makeup? I lived with my grandma when I was 11-13 and she would pour some foundation in her hand, add a little water and then smear that stuff all over her face. You remember that dreaded foundation line around your face, well she had it big time. One of my friends in high school saw me doing that one day. She watched me and then was like, "Girl... no." lol 

Anyway, I am pretty basic when putting on makeup. I don't do all this contouring that I've seen videos of. I use just a few, powder, eye shadow, eye pencil, mascara, lipstick or lip gloss and blush. 

So when I got a sample of Smashbox foundation primer and a sample of Revitalift Miracle Blur in a beauty box, I had to look up what to do with it. So after using it under my foundation for a few weeks I was sold on this foundation primer stuff. It does actually make the foundation look better on my face. Then when summer rolled around again I went to use the Monistat anti-chafing gel on my legs again and realized that both the anti-chafing gel and the foundation primer both had the same exact feel to them. It's sort of a thick, silky powdery feel when you rub it in between your fingers. 

So when you realize some of the foundation primer's can run you between $20-40 a piece and a tube of Monistat anti-chafing gel is about $7, if it works, why not use it?

So did it work? Hell yes it worked! It worked just as well as either of the other products I had and so I looked up the ingredients. The anti-chafing gel, foundation primer and the miracle blur has dimethicone in it. So it makes sense that it feels very similar. 

I like trying new things and that's just another reason that I love getting those beauty boxes. I never know what new interesting product I'll find in them to try out.

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Review: Target Beauty Box- July

What was in this month's box? 

Cashmere Headwraps (Black and Charcoal)- 2 ct
Cashmere headwrap duo offers effortless ways to keep hair out of your face and upgrade your ’do. 
Trend: Hair accessories are having a major moment. Try layering them, too.

e.l.f. Illumintaing Mist & Set- 2.02 oz
Vitamins A, C, E & green tea help hydrate while light-reflecting particles create an instant glow.

John Frieda Frizz Ease Secret Weapon- 1 oz
Secret Weapon formula restores silky-softness and natural shine while keeping flyaways and frizz at bay.

Neutrogena Hydro Boost Water Gel Moisturizer- 0.25 oz
Lightweight gel formula with hyaluronic acid helps hydrate & plump skin without looking oily or greasy.
Tip: After cleansing, apply while your face is still damp to lock in hydration. Use twice daily.

Que Bella Limited Edition Duo - Dead Sea Mud & Pineapple Peel Off- 2pc
Two masks nourish, firm and refresh skin with Dead Sea minerals, vitamin C and amino acids.

Secret Cool Waterlily Clear Gel Deoderant- 0.5 oz 
Quick-dry deodorant with new, reactivating scent technology offers long-lasting odor protection. 
Hint: Did you know you sweat at night? Apply before bed to wake up fresh the next day.

ACURE Day Cream- 1 oz
Lightweight formula with antioxidants & gotu kola helps firm skin and protects from free radicals. 
Pssst! For every full-size purchase, ACURE donates 10¢ to United for HER’s efforts.

Neutrogena Make-Up Remover Cleansing Towelettes- 7 ct
Dissolve dirt, oil and makeup (even waterproof mascara!) for clean, fresh skin in one easy step.

Number of Pieces: 8

This box was only $7 and it said it was worth $30 if you bought everything separately. Not a bad value. I gave my daughter a couple of these things like the headwraps and lotion because the headwraps never stay on my head and I already had two tubes of that same lotion. I usually give her what ever I won't use so it works out well for both of us. Each month Target releases a new Target Beauty Box but supplies are limited and it's first come first serve until they run out. I posted a link to it on my blog when this one went live, I hope a few of you were able to get it

I love getting the little trial size deodorant samples and it's a brand that I already use so that worked out well. Those make up cleaning towelettes are nice but they don't work as well as cold cream in my opinion.

I've also never used a make up setting spray like the Elf spray because I'm pretty basic when I apply make up. But this didn't leave a weird feeling on my face and had no scent to it so why not. I probably wouldn't buy it since I really don't see it making much of a difference compared to not using it.

Have you tried a beauty box yet?

Friday, August 11, 2017

Freebie Friday!

Welcome to another edition of Freebie Friday, where I tell you what free samples and full sized products I received in the mail and how you can get them too. Someone asked me why I do a 'Freebie Friday" each week, so I'll tell you.

A while back I listed all the free samples and wins that I had received that previous year and so many people didn't believe that I could have gotten so many free things. So I decided to prove it by taking a picture every week and sharing the sites that I found the links to the freebies at. So now you too can get great free samples coming to your mailbox each week.

  You can find links to great samples at Hey It's Free and Freebie Shark.

This week I received:

Sample of Sephora Waterproof Makeup Remover
Sample of Dove Anti-Dandruff Shampoo
A $5 Amazon gift card

Did you receive any freebies this week?

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Review: Dragon Fall by Katie MacAlister

Book Description


For Aoife Dakar, seeing is believing-and she's seen some extraordinary things. It's too bad no one else believes that she witnessed a supernatural murder at an outdoor fair. Returning to the scene for proof, Aoife encounters a wise-cracking demon dog-and a gloriously naked man who can shift into a dragon and kiss like a god. Now thrust into a fantastical world that's both exhilarating and terrifying, Aoife is about to learn just how hot a dragon's fire burns.


Kostya has no time for a human woman with endless questions, no matter how gorgeous or tempting she is. He must break the curse that has splintered the dragon clans before more of his kind die. But his powerful attraction to Aoife runs much deeper than the physical-and there may be more to her than even his sharp dragon eyes can see. To survive the coming battle for the fate of his race, he needs a mate of true heart and soul . . .

My Review

Aoife witnesses someone get killed but just like that the man is back and unharmed. No one believes her and she's committed to a mental hospital for a time. She spends some time getting treatment and then is back into the world. But just as things are looking up she hits or think she hits a dog with her car. From her description, he's a big dog but she decides to take him with her to make sure he's alright. 

Kostya was unconscious on a deserted beach when Aoife's dog found him. Aoife did the only thing she could and dragged him to her car, piled him in and got him to a doctor. He doesn't like humans but he finds himself attracted to Aoife. 

Now normally I wouldn't spoil the surprise of a talking demon dog but it's in the blurb so...there's a talking demon dog! Ha! That dog is hilarious and made for such a fun time between Aoife, Kostya and Jim, the demon dog. I mean, get a load of those names and then, Jim the dog. Hilarious. 

I felt really bad for Aoife, I mean she spent time in a mental hospital and I don't think their means of curing her were all that great...her description of what happened to her made me think of One Flew Over The Cuckoo's Nest. So now she's out and finding out that dragon shifters exist, talking demon dog's are a thing and there's a curse that Kostya wants her help with. 

I've said it before, I read books out of order and I won this book in a contest and hadn't read the first book. Even so, when I read a book I want there to be a beginning, middle and clear cut ending...meaning no cliffhangers! So guess what? This one has a cliffhanger. The entire book is about the dragons trying to find a way to get rid of their curse. Besides the romance between Aoife and Kostya, the big story line is finding a way to rid the curse and finding out that they've been searching for the magical ring that Aoife has and can use to help them undo the curse. But guess what never happens? They never find a way to get rid of the curse. The story just ends with no conclusion for that story line. 

For me that cliffhanger ruined this book for me. I was enjoying the banter, the action, the twist and the talking dog and thought that the whole curse story line was going to just get a fast conclusion. Instead, there's no real ending and no main story line conclusion. Not cool, not cool at all. 

I give this book 2 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, August 09, 2017

Review: Birchbox- July

I decided to sign up for a Birchbox subscription box. It's only $10 a month and this month's box came with 5 products. 

In this box was...

Beauty Protector Protect & Detangle Spray
Derma e Anti Wrinkle Scrub
Klorane Dry Shampoo
Marcelle Hydra-C 24H Energizing Hydrating Gel
The Beauty Crop Blush Due

All of these products are new to me so I was excited to start using them. I love the detangle spray. Not only does it actually work on long, wet hair but it smells great too. My hair just long enough for me to sit on, so I like trying new to me hair products. 

I've tried Derma e products before and most of them are just ok to me but this scrub actually is quite nice. The particles in the scrub are small and the scrub itself is silky and didn't break my face out. 

I love trying new dry shampoo's. Unfortunately this one doesn't work for me because it leaves a white residue in my brown hair. Some dry shampoo's have a very light powder effect to them and some others like this one have a heavy powder look to the spray and I just didn't like it. 

The blush duo is nice and seems to be the right color for my face, so that's a win. The only thing I didn't like was there are two colors and one is a cream while the other is a powder. I've used cream blush before and I'm not really a fan and even though I tried using this cream blush I had the same problems with it. It feels a bit sticky and thick which as you can imagine, doesn't feel great on your face. The powder side though is quite nice.

The Marcelle hydrating gel is nice and didn't feel sticky, greasy or heavy. 

So overall, I really like my first Birchbox. Have any of you signed up for this yet? I'll probably get a few more of these before I make up my mind whether or not to keep getting it but so far I like it.

Tuesday, August 08, 2017

Review: How To Date A Dragon by Ashlyn Chase

Book Description

Let the Sparks Fly

Bliss Russo thought nothing exciting ever happened in her life. Until her building caught on fire and she had to be carried out of the flames in the arms of a gorgeous fireman. Sure, her apartment is now in shambles and she'll have to start her huge work project completely from scratch. But at least her love life is finally looking up...if only she can find her red-hot rescuer again.

Dragon shapeshifter Drake Cameron is the last of his clan, and the loneliness is starting to claw at him. He's met only one woman who might be able to stand the shock of his true nature. After all, she barely batted an eyelash when her home burned down. And feeling her curves against him was just as hot as the inferno. Just when he thinks he'll never track her down, she walks into his firehouse—with no idea what she's about to get herself into.

My Review

Bliss wakes up to her apartment on fire and runs right into a firefighter on his way in to save her. But she forgot to get her laptop and she needs it as it has her work on it. She talks the firefighter into going back in for it and she feels bad when he gets suspended for going back in. 

Drake is a dragon shifter so when he went back into the fire to get the laptop for Bliss, he was in no danger of getting burned but no one else knew that. He wants to find a nice female dragon to settle down with and have dragon babies because his species is almost extinct but when he meets Bliss he knows he might just settle for the right human.

Drake wanted to meet a female dragon shifter but the one he does meet ends up being someone he can't see himself with even if she can't take a clue or ten. Drake and Bliss meet back up after the fire and go out and the sparks are flying between them right away. They had great chemistry together and Bliss is really great under pressure. Things are thrown at her and she never really breaks down or lets it get to her. 

There's a lot going on in this book, the other paranormals, the Greek mythology that gets wrapped around this story and some of the crazy characters that show up in this book are just a few of the things going on. But there's also a lot of fire drama and everything that comes with that. Who is starting the fires? Why? How and why does it seem like Bliss is being attacked again and again. 

I liked the story but I wasn't too thrilled with the ending. I just didn't buy her reaction to the new job offer, it didn't make a lot of sense to me and I didn't really care for that entire 'job offer' part of the story or how it ended. But it was well worth the read. 

I give this story 3 out of 5 stars. 

Monday, August 07, 2017

Happy Raturday!

*Photo courtesy of*

"Today's lesson will be how to use sticky tape without getting it in your whiskers."

*Photo courtesy of*

"I do not spend all my time playing with paper clips. Ok, maybe a little time."

*Photo courtesy of @MrRat395*

"I did not need a bath. I do not stink!"

Sunday, August 06, 2017

Recipe: Vegetable Sauce and Chicken

I was watching one of those cooking shows the other day and saw one of the cooks cook up some vegetables then throw them in a blender and boom! sauce. lol So since I've been trying to do more with vegetables I roasted some vegetables and Boom! made a sauce to have with chicken, hamburger, and even as a topping on vegetable stirfry. 

What you'll need:

2 zucchini, chopped
1 onion, chopped
4 carrots, chopped
1 bell pepper, chopped
1/2 cup tomato sauce
2 TBSP olive oil
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. pepper
1/2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1/4 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. ground sage
1/4 cup vegetable broth
1 chicken thigh cooked to your preference

What to do: 

Add all of the vegetables to a baking pan, drizzle with olive oil and roast on 400 degrees for about 40 minutes or until cooked through. Add the tomato sauce to a sauce pan and cook over medium heat until the vegetables are blended. Canned tomato sauce tastes best after it's cooked for a while, at least to me.

In the meantime, cook your chicken thigh the way you like it. I just fried mine in a non-stick skillet and cut it into cubes. 

When your vegetables are done, take them out and let them cool for 10 minutes and then put them in a blender with the spices and chicken broth and blend until smooth. Pour into the pan that has the hot tomato sauce and continue cooking until your chicken is done. Add the sauce to the chicken. I added a little shredded cheddar to mine. 

That vegetable sauce was the real star of this dish and even though it has a funky orange color to it, it has an amazing taste. 

Have you ever made a vegetable sauce?

Saturday, August 05, 2017

What's Been Happening Here?

Today I thought I'd share with you a few interesting things that have happened to me lately.

Last month my neighbor's son broke my mail box. It took days for me to get a confirmation from the post office and finally from my postal carrier that there was a work order put in and it would be fixed at some point. My # is the 11 box. The bottom of the box has been pried out and it's really hard to open and close. Even though I've called so many times I've lost count to find out when it will be fixed and they tell me soon, I won't hold my breath. It's still not fixed but they assure me that it will be soon. 

My neighbor across the street is friends with a man that works at a grocery store. This man didn't like seeing all the food that was no longer fresh enough to sell or close to the expiration date, being thrown in the trash. So he took it upon himself to pack his truck (The one on the street with the door open) with some of the food that was still good but no longer sell-able and give it away. He brings some of the non perishable foods to the food bank and then the perishable stuff he lets his friend across the street know he's coming (about once a week) and she will come across the street to my side and let everyone in this apartment complex know he'll be here in 10 minutes. Most days when he gets here, you can hear him yelling, "Free food! Free Food!" and people will come out to see what he has that day. Ken went out this day and you can see him standing by the car, in the green shirt. The guy had ice cream and snacks that day. 

This is what we got that day. The people around here really appreciate this guy who takes the time to do this because there are a lot of poor people who live in this neighborhood. Sometimes upwards of 30 people show up outside when they know he's coming and sometimes only a handful of people come out. We aren't the only street he goes to, he also brings food to other streets around here. That's not something you see very much and thought it was really nice of him to do. 

Last month we had a big blow out with my next door neighbor (The same one who's son broke my mail box) because people who are looking for her or the guy she lives with are banging on my bedroom window at 3am. We told her 2 times that we don't want her business to spill over into our lives and if it doesn't stop, we would escalate the situation. We believe her boyfriend is dealing drugs out of their apartment. I mean, why else would people be banging on bedroom windows at 3am unless they are looking for something like that. So Ken got mad and made up this sign and put it in our bedroom window. Later that day she came to my door and said because of our sign people keep banging on her bedroom window asking for money and drugs. She lied but Ken took this sign down and put up a new one that reads, "Do not knock on this window!"

We told the police when they were here for another fight in my courtyard that there are 6 problem apartments that are always fighting, breaking things and have a lot of traffic. So they said they would patrol more often here and we've seen more cops in the neighborhood over the part 3 weeks. And no one else has knocked on my bedroom window.

So that's what's been going on in my neck of the woods. What's been going on with you?