Monday, September 26, 2016

IKEA Poang Chair Review

IKEA Poang Chair (photo: Amazon)
Over the past many years, the IKEA Poang chair has been a favorite in my home. If you have not heard of the IKEA store or the Poang chair, you must check them both out. In this review I will describe my experience with this stylish, comfortable, easy-to-move, and space-saving chair.


IKEA Poang Armchair: Comfort and Style


My Poang is approaching 10 years of age. I purchased it when I relocated to the east coast and had an entire apartment to furnish. I had never heard of an IKEA store. But during my first visit to the store, and my first sit in the chair, I purchased a Poang without a second thought.  My plan was to use this lightweight chair until I settled in and bought a substantial (and expensive) chair - such as an upholstered recliner.  

I love my Poang so much that I haven't given a recliner a second thought. I have changed the cushions on my chair once.  I replaced the white cotton canvas (what was I thinking?  I had a dog!) cushion with a red leather cushion. I must say that the white canvas did last longer than they should have - and were machine washable. But after time, I thought the leather would be easier.

My chair is perfect for watching television, reading, and blogging from my laptop.  In fact, I'm writing this now from the comfort of my chair. The bentwood frame allows some rocking motion - which I love.  The curve of the chair back and the head cushion support my back, neck, and head in a way that is so comfortable that I can easily doze off in this chair. 


Poang support and cushion (photo: Amazon)



Why Choose a Poang Series Chair?


  • stylish - comes in a variety of colors
  • comfortable - curved back and cushioned head rest perfect for relaxing
  • sturdy - despite it's light weight, it is very strong and sturdy - listed as being able to hold up to 375 lbs.
  • the cotton canvas cushions are washable and the leather cushions wipe clean
  • placed in a grouping, multiple chairs would be a perfect conversation area
  • small enough to place in a reading nook, bedroom area, or other small area
  • lightweight - extremely easy to move to other areas of the home or to a new home
  • not quite a rocking chair, but perfect for rocking a baby, or yourself, to sleep
  • whether you live in a large or small square footage home a Poang would fit nicely
One or two online reviews state that if you are an older person the chair is difficult to get up and out of. Thus far, I am not finding that to be true. Nor have my older guests had trouble getting out of the chair. Also, I am no skinny-minny and I never feel that this chair is going to break or tip over.

One word of caution:  I did not find this level of sturdiness to be true for the separate footrest. I once sat on the footrest and the bottom popped out - suddenly depositing me to the floor. 

In my home, my chair is so popular that it isn't easy to get a chance to sit in it. "Move your feet, lose your seat" is the rule here when it comes to sharing our IKEA Poang armchair.

Mittens thinks this is her chair

Read decor articles on Review This! and more product reviews on ReviewThisProducts.com




Sunday, September 25, 2016

Reviewing Orange and Black for Halloween and How it Affects Feng Shui

A Good Choice for Halloween & Beyond 
A Water Feature (Via Amazon)
Surround it with Pumpkins

Are you worried that adding more orange and black than usual will upset the Feng Shui you've worked hard to create in your home?

If so, don't worry, it's all good.

What matters is a healthy balance of the five basic elements of Feng Shui.

These five elements are Wood, Fire, Earth, Metal and Water. 

For the purpose of this article, we'll just cover the colors Black and Orange and how you can easily integrate Halloween Decor into your home without the worry of affecting your home's 'balance' (Chi) - meaning, it's good energy.

Orange (A Fire Element Color) - The Social Color

Orange is the color of social activity and conversation. In fact orange is an excellent paint color choice for the kitchen for that very reason.

Kitchens are typically the gathering place for people to converse, so adding orange to your kitchen simply aids in encouraging communication. You can do this by adding items with Halloween or Fall Colors to the space; center pieces, window stickers, and pumpkins.
Bagua Map Created by Funkthishouse.com

However, orange pumpkins usually end up in our foyer or front step. That's a good thing; as you can see by the Feng Shui Bagua Map attached, the Foyer or front entrance area is usually the center part of our home, where we focus on bringing in good fortune.

Adding earth elements such as pumpkins to the hallway or entrance area will merely enhance the balance needed to encourage a little more good fortune.

Black (A Water Element Color) - The Flow of Chi (Good Energy) in Your Home/Life

Black is a huge part of Halloween Decor and like orange, tends to be focused in the Foyer, Front Yard or Entrance Way.

With Black being a Water Element, it represents the flow of energy up and into your home. However, during the Halloween Season we tend to put out some funky freaky items and that's ok too - these items are temporary and relate to fun, so enjoy the night!

However, if you want to keep some standard Feng Shui rules in place even with your Halloween Decor, add black colored elements that are 'flowing'.

A good choice is a rug for the front step that has a wavy element to it, or is round. You could add a round Halloween Rug with Black and Orange in it.

Other items you can add to your front door area are; A black framed mirror (works for Halloween), black metal pots (fill them with Halloween Decor - like a witches brew, straw, a Halloween head prop, yikes! or just a simple fall plant).

An actual water feature in your front yard or entry way is the ideal water element. Decorate it for Halloween, then remove the Halloween Decor from the water feature, and you'll have a basic Feng Shui piece all year 'round to aid in encouraging abundance and success into your life.

So remember the basics: Your front door and entry way are where the flow of Chi enters your home and Water Elements and dark colors such as black can work well.

Conversation, good energy and social connection is brought out with Orange, so place it in your home where you want this part of your life improved - and that certainly is the Front Door when those little Trick or Treaters show up for their candy.

Trick or Treat!




Saturday, September 24, 2016

Planning a Halloween Party


Halloween Witch, GraphicStock.com

Halloween Party Planning Reviewed


Any good party requires some planning and a Halloween party is no different. So it's time to review getting your plans together for a good Halloween party. There are basics that we all need to think about. When is the party? Who are we inviting? What will they eat and drink? Along with other things. That's what we'll go through here. The things to consider for Halloween party planning.

Halloween Party Preparation


As with any party, preparation is key to helping you have a great celebration and getting to enjoy it yourself. And the preparation needs some planning. Get started early so that you have plenty of time to order the fun home decorating items, buffet decor and specialty goodies.

Look at your planning list and make sure you're timing gives you enough time to get everything done.
  • Plan the date, time, location and theme if you want one, like All Spiders or Zombie Invasion..
  • Decide on the guest list.
  • Order the Halloween party invitations - remember to include special notes about theme, costumes and food where needed to prepare your guests.
  • Plan the menu, buffet or table decorations and what extras you need to make creepy or ghoulish treats (like dry ice for a punch or brain molds for food fun.).
  • Determine what home decorations you want. This may include your front porch or yard for welcoming your Halloween party guests. 
  • Make absolutely sure you plan in time for you to enjoy the party. You don't want to be cooking while everyone else is having fun. 
  • If you have kids included in your party, remember to plan Halloween games and activities for them.

Halloween Bathroom Decor for the Party


Decorating the bathroom your guests will use is a big part of the fun. It sure is for me and I've got some great ideas for you.
  • Start with a funny skeleton door cover. Let your guests know immediately where the bathroom is located with the perfect addition.
  • Add a ghoulish toilet topper. These are clings that can complement your theme, or just be another way to decorate for your Halloween party. 
  • Then finish off with a set of Halloween hand towels. Make sure your guests are fully immersed in the fun of your party. 

Halloween Party Planning Review


Get your Halloween party planning ready. This way you won't find yourself scrambling for what you need or settling for something not nearly as good. Party planning is the key to a great and fun Halloween celebration.  And be sure to check out my Halloween Haven - Website Review for more tips and suggestions for your own Halloween party.

Friday, September 23, 2016

How to Create a Beautiful Fall Harvest Display for Your Yard or Porch

Reviewing Outdoor Fall Displays

Learn how to create a beautiful fall harvest display in yards or porch, capture the brilliance of flowers and combine it with the great harvest fest. As the weather starts to cool down and the leaves start to change colors, everything appears to be gradually preparing for a long winter's sleep.  While the fall colors are beautiful, our yards don't seem quite as vibrant and colorful as they have been.  We desire a way to hold on to the beautiful summer flowers and green lawns, but to still embrace the gorgeous fall changes.  Some of us have found the perfect solution.  

It isn't time to really start decorating for Halloween, but we can start decorating our yards for fall in a way that will compliment the Halloween decor when it is time.  Plus, thanks to the milder weather, we can leave these fall displays intact until Thanksgiving.  By creating a beautiful fall harvest display in our yards or on our porch, we capture the brilliance of flowers and combine it with the great harvest fest.  Some of the vegetables or flowers may have to be replaced over the course of the next few months, but the backdrops and foundations can easily remain.

Start by choosing a beautiful setting in front of a tree with the dramatic fall color leaves, like a maple tree.  Or, build your display on your front porch where it will be better protected from weather.

Here are Some Ideas for Creating a
Beautiful Fall Harvest Display for your Yard or Porch


Learn how to create a beautiful fall harvest display in yards or porch, capture the brilliance of flowers and combine it with the great harvest fest.


Foundations for a Fall Harvest Display


As with any creation, a strong, firm foundation will ensure the longevity of your fall yard display.   There are a variety of of items that are easy to obtain, or perhaps that you already have on hand, that make the perfect display base or foundation.

Decorative Hay Bales

20 in. and 32 in. PVC Hay Bale Set - Reusable hay bales

  1. Hay Bales
  2. Wooden Benches
  3. Wagons
  4. Wooden Crates
  5. Wheel Barrow 
  6. Wicker Baskets
  7. Wooden Baskets

Note:  The featured hay bales are PVC Hay Bales made for decorative purposes.  If you build your fall display with real hay, you can later use the hay to mulch your flower or vegetable garden, to prevent soil erosion, or to protect and cover seeds.

 


Decorative Items for a Fall Yard Display 


5' Scarecrow Fall Harvest Halloween Decoration
5' Scarecrow Fall Harvest 
Halloween Decoration
Once we have our foundation in place, we can start adding the fun, decorative items that we have chosen.  I usually add my main feature next which is most often an owl or a happy scarecrow.  You can always make your own scarecrow by stuffing old clothes with straw, creating a face or mask, and topping him off with an old hat.  Or, you can purchase a ready made scarecrow.

Additional Fall Decoration Suggestions for Your Display
  1.  Pumpkins 
  2.  Gourds
  3.  Leaves
  4.  Flowers:  Mums, Sunflowers, etc.
  5.  Plants:  Ornamental Cabbage or Kale 
  6.  Ornamental Grass
  7.  Tall Corn Stalks
  8.  Indian Corn  
  9.  Pine Cones
  10.  Sting of Lights
  11.  A Bunch of Acorns  (You would need a bunch of acorns in a basket for them to show on the display.  Or, you could stuff the bottom of the basket and put the acorns on the top) 


If you build your display on your porch, you could even make a fall wreath for your front door that coordinates with your display.





"How to Create a Beautiful Fall Harvest Display for Your Yard or Porch Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse


Thursday, September 22, 2016

Reviewing Wham! Fantastic Album

80s pop group Wham!'s first album - Fantastic, containing some of the best Wham! songs from the 80s.
Wham! Fantastic Album
The early 80s saw two childhood friends become pop stars with their first album, they were known as Wham! and their album was simply called Fantastic.   As a teen I thought the album was summed up nicely with that name so here's my review of Wham!'s Fantastic album.

Anyone who loves 80s pop music would have heard of Wham! and would probably enjoy their songs, as a teen I thought they were fantastic and I had one wall in my bedroom dedicated to their posters!  That said I'm all grown up now and I still like this album!   Admittedly it's probably a case of nostalgia and the fact that it makes me think I'm still a teenager, but I believe this album has stood the test of time.

The Fantastic Album by Wham! was their first album and was a number one hit on the UK album charts.   The songs (written by George Michael) were part satirist and part social commentary which is why I think they were so popular.

As MTV had just been 'born' the group made also produced some great 80s music videos to accompany their singles.

Young Guns (Go For It!)

Wham!'s First Hit Single


Although Young Guns was actually Wham!'s second single to be released, it was their first hit and the introduction to many teenagers to this 80s duo.

The BBC program Top of the Pops (TOTPs) is credited with this single taking off. The single Young Guns was still outside of the Top 40 when Wham! were scheduled to appear.

Now at this time in the UK TOTPs was still compulsory viewing for the younger generation as other music shows such as The Tube were not around just yet. I can remember sitting down watching TOTP when Wham! came on and I was hooked on the beat (and the boys!).

Everything about Wham! was perfectly timed for 1982. George Michael has said that he was inspired to write the song after seeing a number of their school friends getting married straight out of school.

The music video for this single shows George singing to Andrew and trying to get him not to throw his life away by getting married early. Referring to him as "Hey Sucker" he tells him -

"See me, single and free
No tears, no fears, what I want to be.
One, two, take a look at you
Death by matrimony!" 
And warns that if he marries now he's crazy and his future is going to be -
"Sleepless nights, on an H.P. bed
 A daddy by the time you're twenty-one"


If you've enjoyed that music video, download Young Guns by Wham! now.

Wham! Rap

Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley


With the success of Young Guns (Go for it!) Wham! decided to re-release their first single Wham! Rap.

Their first few singles and accompanying videos told stories which were part satirist and part social commentary. Wham! Rap was their first single, although it never broke into the top 40 initially. Their second single fared better and so they re-released Wham! Rap the following year and it was a top ten hit in the UK.

Wham! Rap is about youngsters living the high life on the dole chasing their pleasures and shrugging their responsibilities. Prancing about in their jeans and leather jackets George and Andrew seemed to embody the hedonistic values of the song.

From the opening line the Wham! boys seem to be thumbing their nose at people who work and glamorizing the idea of being on the dole (a stark reality for a number of young people in the UK at the beginning of the 80s).

"Hey everybody take a look at me,
I've got street credibility,
I may not have a job,
But I have a good time,
With the boys that I meet "down on the line"


If you enjoyed this hit Wham! song then download it from here and listen to Wham Rap whenever you like!

Bad Boys

One of the Best Wham! Songs


I absolutely LOVED this song when it came out. The rhythm and words are both catchy and appealed to the youth of the time. I still can't help singing along when I hear this song.

As with Wham!'s other songs from their first album Fantastic!, Bad Boy tells a story. Embracing the age of the music video Wham! told the song's story visually as well.

Bad Boys is about a rebellious teenager and his worried parents and was always going to appeal to Wham!'s young audience. The song starts off with the words

"Dear mummy, Dear Daddy,
You had plans for me, I was your only son."

and goes on as only a rebellious youth would holding everything 'bad' in high esteem and looking down on everything 'good.'

Parents asking - "Where were you last night?" were portrayed as being nosy busybodies as opposed to worried parents.

As a teen at the time I could really relate - as a mother now I shudder! I do still love the song though:)


If you want to be transported back to 1983 then download Bad Boys here and listen to it whenever you like!


Club Tropicana

One of the Top Wham! Songs

Club Tropicana is a musical send up of the Club Med scene. This scene was where 18-30 year olds could take a package holiday with other 18-30 year olds. The result was a booze ridden week of hook-ups!

"Club Tropicana, drinks are free,
Fun and sunshine - there's enough for everyone.
All that's missing is the sea,
But don't worry, you can suntan!"

This was the last of four singles released from their first album - Fantastic!. All four of the singles had made it into the Top Ten and Wham! were on top of their game.

The idea of every single telling a story and then the music video reiterating the story visually was a successful ploy of Wham!s.


As the song goes......" fun and laughter - there's enough for everyone. All that's missing is the ..." song - download it now and have a good time!


Fantastic - by Wham!

The album Fantastic by Wham! was released on 9th July 1983 and reached number one in the UK album charts.

Original Fantastic Track Listing

1. "Bad Boys" - 3:19 (Written by George Michael)
2. "Ray Of Sunshine" - 4:43 (Written by George Michael)
3. "Love Machine" - 3:19 (Written by Pete Moor &, Billy Griffin)
4. "Wham! Rap (Enjoy What You Do)" - 6:41 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
5. "Club Tropicana" - 4:28 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
6. "Nothing Looks The Same In The Light" - 5:53 (Written by George Michael)
7. "Come On" - 4:24 (Written by George Michael)
8. "Young Guns (Go For It!)" - 3:55(Written by George Michael)


Wham! Fantastic AlbumWham! Fantastic Album
In 1998 the cd was reissued and contained three bonus tracks –

1. "Bad Boys" – 3:19 (Written by George Michael)
2. "Ray Of Sunshine" – 4:43 (Written by George Michael)
3. "Love Machine" – 3:19 (Written by Pete Moore & Billy Griffin)
4. "Wham! Rap (Enjoy What You Do)" – 6:41 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
5. "A Ray Of Sunshine (Instrumental Remix)" - 5:40 (Written by George Michael)
6. "Love Machine (Instrumental Remix)" - 3:28 (Written by George Michael)
7. "Club Tropicana" – 4:28 (Written by George Michael & Andrew Ridgeley)
8. "Nothing Looks The Same In The Light" – 5:53 (Written by George Michael)
9. "Come On" – 4:24 (Written by George Michael)
10. "Young Guns (Go For It!)" – 3:55 (Written by George Michael)
11. "Nothing Looks The Same In The Light (Instrumental Remix)" - 6:40 (Written by George Michael)

I hope you've enjoyed this musical hop back to the 80s with me, now confession time.  Although I had a wall dedicated to Wham! I didn't actually own this particular LP. My brother had it, I just may have (purely in the role of big sister) commandeered it so much that you would think it belonged to me!

One of the popular albums of the 1980s was Wham! Fantastic album which hit the number 1 spot on the UK album chart.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Review of the KitchenAid Artisan Mixer

KitchenAid Artisan Review, or Why I Love My Blue KitchenAid Artisan Mixer!

 KitchenAid KSM150PSBW Artisan Series 5-Qt. Stand Mixer with Pouring Shield - Blue Willow

My son gave me my KitchenAid Artisan mixer in Cobalt Blue for Christmas in 2006 and I have loved this stand mixer ever since. Of course the most important reason I love it so much is that my son gave it to me! Second would have to be that it's Cobalt Blue, one of my favorite colors! (My kitchen is Blue and White and Stainless Steel.) But even though that is plenty enough to make it one of my favorite appliances in the kitchen, there is so much more to love about the KitchenAid Artisan stand mixer!

Before I got it, I had 2 hand mixers and a food processor and a food grinder, but the KitchenAid stand mixer actually replaces the food processor and the food grinder for me. In fact, with the bread kneading attachment, it takes away the need for a bread maker, really, since the hard part of bread is the kneading. I use my bread kneading attachment all the time in the Winter when I make bread several times weekly. (It came with the mixer.) So that's 4 appliances in one! Cool, right?

And this mixer is strong! They say it has 325 watts of power. (Whatever that means!) What I know is that it whips everything fast with no problem whatsoever! Plus the head tilts back, so easy to get the bowl off the stand.

And about the attachments: Mine came with a wire whisk attachment that will whip cream in a few minutes with ease, the kneading attachment which they call the dough hook, and flat beater attachment that is for things that are truly hard to mix, like stiff cookie dough, or maybe meatloaf. It also came with a shield to keep food from spattering, and a chute for adding in more ingredients. It also comes with a 5-quart polished stainless steel bowl to add to the beauty of this mixer!

In the reviews I read on Amazon, some people noted that this mixer is very heavy so hard to put away and retrieve. Maybe so, but it's beautiful and so useful that it's fine to leave it out on the counter all the time in a place of honor; that's what I do. In fact if you've seen any of my recipes online, you have most probably seen it in some of the pictures, because I don't put it away, ever. It sits on the counter, right next to the wine. Priorities, you know?

KitchenAid Stand Mixer Colors



KitchenAid Stand mixer colors
KtchenAid Stand Mixer Colors


I love Blue, so my son gave me a Blue KitchenAid Mixer, but they are available in an array of colors to go with any kitchen or kitchen theme. You can see in the picture there are different shades of Blue, Red, Green, Yellow, Black, Gray, and even White. (Yes, they have more than one shade of White.) And there are Stainless Steel and Copper too. Here are just a few of the ones available! White, Black, Yellow, Tangerine, Espresso, Watermelon, Ice Blue, Almond, Aqua, Pink, Bayleaf Green, Cranberry, Blue Willow, Boysenberry, Silver, Copper, Cornflower, Blue, French Blue, Apple Green, Red, Gray, Stainless Steel.


*Note about the KitchenAid Mixers Sale


If you are searching for the sale on KitchenAid mixers, it usually happens in January and July. But you don't have to wait to get a great price on one. Amazon always has great deals and you can almost always work out a way to get FREE SHIPPING. On any item, click "More Options" to see other ways to buy it, including free shipping options.



Video Review of the Best KitchenAid Mixer


See why someone else agrees with me that the Artisan KitchenAid mixer is the best stand mixer! Of all the KitchenAid food mixers, it's the one with the most rave reviews!

Want to see it again, and check out the accessories that come with it? Just click on the link. Happy Cooking!

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Where To Invade Next Reviewed

A Michael Moore Documentary



americans can change things
I will be reviewing the documentary film by Michael Moore Where To Invade Next today. Perhaps I should start with saying that I did not think that I would like this movie. In fact, I was more than just a little perturbed at my husband for putting it on our Netflix queue when it arrived in our mailbox.

Suffice it to say, I am not generally a big fan of Mr. Moore. It isn't so much that I disagree with some of his ideals; it is usually the manner in which he decides to expose some wrongful deed by individuals, corporations or our own government. It just seems that most of the time he uses the shock technique to get people to pay attention to what he is exposing at the time. To be fair, I guess most people need to be shocked to listen. His antics in the past usually put me off and the people he is trying to get to admit the errors in their ways just get upset and other than making people aware not much gets accomplished to fix the wrong.

I found, to my surprise, that his latest movie Where To Invade Next was a lot less offensive to my sensitivities. Actually, he was quite respectful in his approach with this movie. I was also surprised at the actual content of the movie. With the name, I assumed that it would be a film about all of the wars that our country has been in and why we should not have been involved, the bad things we did and how we should be ashamed. That couldn't be further from the truth as far as the movie goes. The title is deceiving and the movie was well worth watching. 

Mr. Moore invades (visits) other countries across the globe looking at things that they do better than we do here in America. For instance he spends time in Italy discussing how workers are treated in that country. He talks to both employees and employers about the practice of giving people 8 weeks of paid vacation each year. The concept is simple relaxed employees are more productive than stressed out overworked employees are.

Healthy Lunches For School Age Children




Our first lady has made it one of her causes to make sure that children in school get healthier lunches. She could learn some things from the French, though. In France it is more than just a suggestion; it is the law that children be fed healthy nutritious lunches. The children are fed 4 and 5 course meals that would only be found in expensive restaurants here in America. Lunch is one hour long and is considered a class in France. Children are not only taught about healthy foods but also table manners and even how to serve the other people at the table. One would assume that meals like that would be very expensive but Mr. Moore points out that the French actually spend less on their school lunches than we do here in the United States. Insightful information!

I might move to Iceland


One of my most favorite invasions/visits was to Iceland. Back in 2008 when the entire world found itself in a financial crises thanks to the banks and Wall Street; Iceland was hit very hard. Of all of the banks that failed in Iceland, one did not; only one. That particular bank was owned by women. Those women had not fallen for the quick money to be gained by hedging on bad loans. The big take away for me from Iceland was the treatment of women in the business world. It is the law in Iceland that every company has to have no less than 40% women on their boards. Actually it is a 60/40 split that can be 40% women or 60% women. So, in fairness the women can not represent more than 60% of a board either. I also did not realize that Iceland was the first democratic country to elect a woman as President...back in the 1980s. Ms. Vigdis Finnbogadottir served as the President from 1980 through 1996. What an impressive woman! 

"Fathers know their daughters are smart, brothers know that their sisters are smart"....Vigdis Finnbogadottir


Finland Educates Children Better 


At one time the Finns and the U.S. were pretty equal in the success (or lack thereof) of educating the children in the schools. The people of Finland decided that they wanted to do better. They have gained in their standings by a great deal. Want to know how? They forbid homework! That is right, the children have no homework. They have realized that it is more important for a child to have free time to play, discover and learn from life. Children are less stressed and respond better to school because they are better rested and are allowed to be a child. Also, they spend less hours in the classroom than the children in the United States. Oh and NO standardized testing! 

There were many countries that Mr. Moore chose to visit/invade for their ideas and they were all quite interesting. Every single one of them were things that we as Americans could change and have a better life for all of our citizens. If we decided to embrace one change at a time and we insisted that change be made, we could make it happen. We can't sit back and hope for the change, we can't expect the current politicians to keep their promises; instead we must remind them that they represent you and I and that we want things changed. Changed for the better, not the worse. 

Even though the cover of the movie says that this documentary is hilarious, don't expect a comedy. I honestly did not find anything humorous. Instead, I found Mr. Moore discussing some very valid changes that could be made here in America that would benefit the whole instead of just a few. I found the information worthwhile and inspiring. I actually apologized to my dear hubby for being upset about the movie because I really did find it informative and very much worth watching.


Monday, September 19, 2016

Spoonula Review

Le Creuset Spatula Spoon
Sometimes it is the smallest and most overlooked thing that makes our lives easier. In this case, I have discovered that my spoonula is one of the things that makes life in the kitchen much better. Cooking is not typically something that is enjoyable for me. My cooking is about survival more than fun. But my silicone, wooden-handled hybrid of a spatula and a spoon is the first tool I grab now when at the stove. This is my spoonula review.


My Wonderful Williams-Sonoma Spoonula


A friend of mine re-gifted some small spatulas and strange-looking utensils to me. The larger utensils of the bunch were strange-looking; a wedge of concave silicone on a wooden handle.  It was fairly large and chunky.  I tossed it into a drawer thinking that I'd throw it away after my friend left.

One day, after having neglected kitchen chores in such a long time that my spatulas and spoons were dirty, I grabbed this strange utensil. I don't recall what I was cooking - probably scrambled eggs.  I do recall how I immediately loved this spoon-spatula.  Despite it's relatively hefty weight, it was comfortable and easy to handle.  It scraped and flipped my food like a dream.  

Since then, I've looked it up on the internet and identified it as a Williams-Sonoma Spoonula with a wooden handle. I want to purchase another one or two because I like it so much.  I've owned this one for approximately a year now.  I have not melted the silicone end - as I often do my spatulas.


My Williams-Sonoma Spoonula


I recommend a silicone spoonula for the following reasons:

  • in the fry pan - scrambled eggs and sauteed veggies
  • stirring sauces - gravy and alfredo sauce
  • mixing batters - perfect for scraping every drop of pancake or cake batter from the bowl
  • scraping that last bit of the peanut butter from the inside of the large jar
  • It does not scratch my non-stick pans
  • It has not melted
  • Is extremely durable - I JUST noted that it is to be hand-washed.  I've run mine through the dishwasher after every frequent use.  Which explains the slight wear of the wooden handle. Oops.

If you are talented in the kitchen, I am quite sure you can find more uses for this durable and handy kitchen tool.  
KitchenAid Silicone Spoon Spatula


Whether you prefer the Williams-Sonoma brand, or other brands such as Rachel Ray's, I think you will find a sturdy silicone spoonula as helpful in the kitchen as I do.


Rachel Ray's 3-piece Spoonula Set


A Few Considerations from the Experts When Purchasing Silicone Spatulas


I completely lucked into ownership of a silicone spoonula suited to my needs.  I have experienced kitchen utensils that melt and utensils that are so flimsy they are worthless.  I had not considered further potential kitchen utensil problems and annoyances. Here is a wonderful silicone spatula review from American's Test Kitchen to guide your purchase or your silicone spatula or spoonula.







Saturday, September 17, 2016

A Tasty Review for National Cheeseburger Day - September 18

Cheeseburger for National Cheeseburger Day September 18
Cheeseburger (Source: Pixabay)

National Cheeseburger Day is one of those 'unofficial' holidays with no known source, although several restaurants have laid claim to it over the years going back to the 1920s.

As the story goes, Lionel Sternberger supposedly invented the cheeseburger in 1926 while working at his father’s Pasadena, California sandwich shop, “The Rite Spot”.  During an experiment, he dropped a slice of American cheese on a sizzling hamburger.




Other Possible Origins of National Cheeseburger Day


  • In 1928, O'Dell's restaurant in Los Angeles served a cheeseburger smothered with chili. It cost 25 cents.
  • Kaelin’s Restaurant in Louisville, Kentucky says it invented the cheeseburger in 1934.
  • It's said that a trademark for the name “cheeseburger” was awarded to Louis Ballast of the Humpty Dumpty Drive-In in Denver, Colorado in 1935, and Gus Belt, founder of Steak n' Shake is known to have applied for a trademark for the word in the 1930s. 

Whatever it's origin, the cheeseburger, America’s favorite sandwich of a hamburger  topped off with a piece of cheese, is enjoyed by millions every day.  Somewhere along the line, September 18 was designated as "National Cheeseburger Day".


Having your Cheeseburger in a Restaurant


Source: PIxabay
If you plan to go out to eat a cheeseburger on September 18, here are some free cheeseburger discounts and coupons compiled by Go Banking Rates website to help you celebrate National Cheeseburger Day.  For instance, Steak 'n Shake is offering a Philly Cheese Double Steakburger and Fries for just $3.99 with the coupon in this article until October 23. And by searching the web, you can find other special deals and freebies offered by a variety of places aimed at helping you enjoy a Cheeseburger!  Some of these offers are good for several days or weeks after the event.



Cooking your Own Cheeseburger


Article from "Recipes for Real People"
One of our contributors here on Review This!, Susan Deppner, wrote an article on her "Recipes for Real People" blog about Delicious Hamburgers on the Grill 

With the addition of a slice of cheese, this hamburger recipe can easily be turned into a cheeseburger on the grill. 

Susan also tells us about National Hamburger Day, which takes place on May 28th. Between Hamburger Day and Cheeseburger Day, we will never run out of fun occasions to enjoy one of our favorite dishes!


More Cheeseburger Recipes


Image courtesy of mbgphoto
Mary Beth Granger (mbgphoto here on Review This!) gives us a wonderful alternative to a cheeseburger on a bun. 

Here's her recipe for Cheeseburger Soup!





Cheeseburger Cookbook



Available on Amazon

If you are looking for more cheeseburger recipes, this cheeseburger cookbook recipe collection will show you how to dress up your everyday cheeseburger and take it to the next level of 'deliciousness'.  

The pages are filled with 37 mouth-watering cheeseburger recipes.  Try them all until you can decide which is your favorite! 





Crafty Cheeseburgers!

 

Cheeseburger Potholder Set in Crochet on Etsy
Cheeseburger Potholders in Crochet
Since I'm a crochet crafter, I decided to create in yarn a set of potholders which, when stacked together, look like a cheeseburger. If you'd like to make your own, I put together a tutorial for a free crochet pattern for these Cheeseburger Potholders

If you don't crochet, but would like a set, one can be found in my Etsy Shop Coastal Crochet Crafts. These cheeseburger novelty potholders are sure to be noticed and talked about when displayed in your kitchen. They are also a very practical addition to your kitchen helpers.





Happy Cheeseburger Day!

 





Friday, September 16, 2016

Sully Movie Review - True Story of the Miracle on the Hudson

 The movie Sully shows us something there was no way we could see on 1/15/09 or the following days. It gives us a front row seat to how heroes are revealed.
Sully is an excellent movie based on the emergency water landing of US Airways Flight 1549 piloted by Captain Sullenberger, aka Sully.   After losing both engines due to a bird strike, there was little time to decide the best course of action.   As you will see in the movie, there were many people in authority who criticized and tried to second guess Sully's decisions.  However, at that most difficult moment, Captain Sullenberger made a judgement call that saved the lives of all 155 souls on the flight, as well as countless others on the ground. 

Few movies that are based on actual events honestly present the facts as they actually happened.  Most directors take a poetic license to "grow" the characters or add to the drama.  However, in the case of "Sully", there was no reason to inflate the character of the man.  Nor was there any reason to increase the drama surrounding the flight crew and passengers on that plane that day.  

This movie deserves more than applause and awards for the portrayal of actual details and accounts of the actions taken that day by the entire crew and rescue workers who immediately responded.  It also shows the stress and judgement the crew members were forced to endure as their decisions were probed and analyzed by a board of individuals safely sitting on the ground. 

Clint Eastwood has always been one of my favorite actors, however he excels even beyond those expectations as a director.  Paired with an outstanding performance by Tom Hanks, who plays Sully, this movie stands heads above any other drama I have ever seen or reviewed. 


"Sully" Facts and Details - Not Just An Ordinary Movie


 SullyCheck PriceThe real facts and the movie depiction are the same.  On January 15, 2009, US Airways Flight 1549 departed New York's LaGuardia  airport in route to Charlotte, NC.   Approximately 3 minutes into the flight, the plane struck a flock of Canadian Geese causing both engines to fail.  It is the only time in aviation history that there has ever been a duel engine failure on a passenger carrier caused by external factors.  An emergency landing was imperative, but there were no obvious options for a safe landing. 

While receiving rerouting suggestions for a runway landing at nearby airports from air traffic control, Captain Sullenberger and First Officer Jeffrey Skiles made a cool headed and well considered decision to land the plane in the Hudson River near boating terminals.  In an amazing, unprecedented glide landing on water, Sully landed the A320 jet, and the crew started an immediately evacuation of the passengers.

Also accurately depicted in the movie and almost as unbelievable as the safe water landing, NY Waterway ferry Thomas Jefferson, commanded by Captain Vincent Lombardi arrived to help with evacuation 4 minutes after the plane landed.  It was followed by several other boats, rescue divers, and emergency response teams who were all ready and willing to help save lives.

The fact that all passengers and crew members survived truly was a "Miracle on the Hudson".


"Sully", The Movie


Many of us saw the news reports and watched the miraculous rescue in real life, but the movie fills in the blanks.  It shows us something there was no way we could see on Jan. 15th or the following days.  It gives us a front row seat to how heroes are revealed.  

We witness what will most likely be the last 3 minutes of the lives on-board that plane.  We watch the excruciating agony of the helpless on the ground through the eyes of the air traffic controllers.  We quickly realize the horror that New Yorker's are once again being forced to watch unfold.  


Staring out the cockpit windows of the fast approaching freezing cold water, we find ourselves bracing for impact.  Then in a few brief moments, pulling from all previous flying experiences and training, an extraordinary pilot does the improbable.  He safely lands the jet on water.

The crew oversees the evacuation and Sully, himself, walks the length of the plane to ensure all of the passengers are out before he will step outside of the plane.  It is clear that his first concern before he lands the plane and afterwards was for the safety of the passengers of Flight 1549.

Now, you think that is all of the story, but it is not! 

All aviation accidents are investigated.  Determining who or what is at fault becomes the focus.  Not that the pilot and crew saved lives by their actions, but whether or not those actions are considered "appropriate".  This is the part of the story most didn't know until they see the movie.   


After you see the movie or read the book, I would love for you to return and tell me how you felt, what you thought, how you would like to respond.  

Personally, I have a renewed admiration for the pilots of all aircrafts and their determination to succeed in that industry.   

I'm going to close by saying something I have never said in a review before.  If you haven't seen this movie yet, go!




Read More Movie Reviews On ReviewThisMovies.com




"Sully" Movie Review Written by:
House of Sylvestermouse