Showing posts with label life. Show all posts
Showing posts with label life. Show all posts

Friday, December 1, 2017

In the Weeds - Mark Ozeroff, Author



Potato Leek Soup
(Mark Ozeroff's favorite Recipe from the Old World
)

2 large leeks
3 T. butter
4 cups chicken broth
Salt and pepper
1 med. onion, chopped
4 med. potatoes, cubed
1 1/2 cups heavy cream
Chives, optional

Slit leeks and wash THOROUGHLY. Chop and sauté leeks with onion in butter for 5 minutes, stirring. Add broth and potatoes, simmer for 15 minutes. Blend slightly and add cream. Serve hot or cold with chives.


In the Weeds - Review by Martha A Cheves, Author of: Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; and A Book and A Dish

I sat on Bian's bed, staring out the only window in the tiny room.  She'd been looking west, toward the Everglades.  The fleeting patches of sun a couple days ago probably would have seemed familiar to her, perhaps like her memories of Vietnam.  Here, she'd known nothing but strangers, uniforms, and pain.  But perhaps a familiar sight, and a memory of home, drew her toward the unknown.

I left her room and descended the stairwell, just as she must have done.  I turned left on the landing toward the exit and found myself looking at the eastern edge of the Everglades.

I dropped to my knees to get a child's perspective, and could clearly see a gap in the vegetation, the start of a trail.  I stood and followed it, then closed my eyes.  Burrowing as deeply into the mind of a young girl as I could, I took a fresh look down the trail.  To a hurting and exiled orphan, this must have looked like a path to freedom.  I took my bearings, like the pilot I was, then marched back to the orphanage.

This young child, aging around 4, was brought from Vietnam to the US to start a new life.  She had been burned over thirty percent of her body and one of her legs had been amputated below the knee.  She is lost and looking for someone or something that might make her feel that she is safe and cared about.

This young child will also be what brings Vietnam veteran "Slats" Kisov, back to a new start of his own.  Slats flew an O-1 for the Air Force as a 'spotter' who would fly low enough to spot the enemy and report their position to the pilots flying the F-4 Phantoms.  After being shot while on a mission, he was eventually sent home to what should be a normal life.  It didn't take long for Slats to find his life was going to be far from normal.  When you combine PTSD, pot, a girlfriend who used to be the sheriff's wife, the fact that the sheriff is a member of the Klan, and a hurricane that should have taken his life, you find a man with a really mixed up life.  Just the kind of life only a child can smooth out.

This book is full of Vietnam War history.  I've know several who served during this terrible war and when asked about events as I read them, they assured me that what I was reading was true.  All the way down to the orphans that were brought over, some in very sad health.  Reading about some of the events we were never told here in the states, it broke my heart to know what these men went through.  So when Slats took his flying ability to an illegal level, I actually worried about him making it through the dangers of his actions.  I've read hundreds of books and have to say that this one is written in a fashion that made me feel like I was listening to a real person as he told me about his life.  It's very believable and well worth reading.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

Charge of an Angel - Linda Diane Wattley, Author



Shrimp with Garlic Cream Sauce over Linguine

1 cup hot water
1 cup Original COFFEEMATE Powdered Coffee Creamer
8 large cloves garlic, unpeeled
16 large shrimp, peeled and deveined
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 teaspoon cornstarch
3 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
3/4 cup Buitoni Refrigerated Freshly Shredded Parmesan Cheese (5 oz.) 
1 pkg. Buitoni Refrigerated Linguine (9 oz.) , prepared at the last minute
Directions:
WHISK together water and Coffee-mate until smooth.

BRING 6 cups water to a boil in medium saucepan. Add garlic; cook for 2 minutes. Add shrimp; cook for 2 minutes or until they turn pink. Drain. Peel and chop garlic.

HEAT oil in large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic; cook, stirring frequently, for 1 minute.

WHISK in Coffee-mate mixture and cornstarch; whisk until cornstarch is dissolved. Cook, whisking occasionally, for 3 to 4 minutes or until sauce begins to thicken. Stir in parsley, cheese and shrimp. Season with salt and ground black pepper. Pour sauce over pasta; toss to coat.

Nutritional Information
Serving size: 1/4
Servings per recipe: 4
Calories530
Calories from Fat180
Total Fat 21g32%
Saturated Fat 11g53%
Cholesterol 180mg59%
Sodium 410mg17%
Carbohydrates 50g17%
Dietary Fiber 2g7%
Sugars 1g
Protein31g
Vitamin A8%
Vitamin C10%
Calcium20%
Iron15%

Charge of an Angel - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of: Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; and A Book and A Dish

"I will never know who I would have been if this hadn't happened to me.  That is so hard for me to live with.  I don't know the real person I was, and I never will.  How can I live with something like that?  I feel robbed - cheated.  First, my mother and my brother are taken from me.  I found out that my father is not my father, and then I find out my virginity, youth, and innocence was stolen right in front of my face.  Why me?"

Her name is Leona Marie Tillard and her life has been turned inside out.  One night she, her mother, father and two brothers went to bed as a family.  When she woke her mother was gone.  Sometime later her brother went away and Daddy will tell her nothing about where they are or why she can't see them.  Daddy was lost without her mother and needed someone to 'comfort' him.  With Leona being the only female in the house, she stepped into that position.  Then comes her Daddy's marriage to another woman who has three children of her own and her family is complete again.  So she thought.

When I ask Author Linda Wattley if this book was fact or fiction she assured me it is both.  After talking to her, we both confirmed we knew young girls who were put into a position of being sexually abused by parents, other relatives, and adults that were in their lives.  The same adults that were supposed to take care of them and lead them in the right direction chose instead to impose their own sick needs on these innocent children.  And in some instances they even included boys in their desires.

Are the children to be blamed for not telling?  No way.  The threats they receive if they tell is too fearful.  They are brainwashed to believe that what they are doing isn't wrong. Supposedly, it's all done as an act of love, a way of showing love, and proving they are loved.  If they are found out they are treated by others as being sick as well and that they should have known better, known it was wrong, refused what was being done to them.  How can you know something is wrong if someone who is supposed to take care of you and teach you right from wrong is committing the crime against you?  You simply can't.


Charge of an Angel is book one of three.  It takes you through the abuse that Leona endures, her feelings, and her ways of escaping from realty.  It will make you hurt for her and those like her.  It will make you want to really hurt the person doing this to her.  And it will have you waiting to see how life treats her as she gets out of her abusive life and goes on as a young adult.  I know I'm patiently waiting on book 2.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Soldier With A Backpack: Living and Dying Simultaneously - Linda Diane Wattley, Author



Roasted Tofu

(If you’ve never had roasted tofu before, here’s a great way to start.  Toss tofu and asparagus in a tangy orange and basil scented sauce, made rich and savory with miso.  Serve with brown rice or couscous and an orange and fennel salad.)


1 ¼ oz. package extra-firm water-packed tofu, rinsed
2 Tbsp. red miso, divided
2 Tbsp. balsamic vinegar, divided
4 tsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
1 lb. asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1” pieces
3 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil
1 tsp. freshly grated orange zest
¼ cup orange juice
¼ tsp. salt

Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray.  Pat tofu dry and cut into ½” cubes.  Whisk 1 Tbsp. miso, 1 Tbsp. vinegar and 2 tsp. oil in a large bowl until smooth.  Add the tofu; gently toss to coat.  Spread the tofu in an even layer on the prepared baking sheet.  Roast for 15 minutes.  Gently toss asparagus with the tofu.  Return to the oven and roast until the tofu is golden brown and the asparagus is tender, 8 – 10 minutes more.  Meanwhile, whisk the remaining 1 Tbsp. miso, 1 Tbsp. vinegar, 2 tsp. oi, basil, orange zest and juice, and salt in a large bowl until smooth.  Toss the roasted tofu and asparagus with the sauce and serve.

Soldier With A Backpack - Review by Martha A Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

I always welcomed sleep because it was a form of escape from the grown up world.  When I would go to sleep, there was always an angelic presence waiting for me.  At the time, I didn't know it was this presence drawing me there, I just knew I couldn't wait to get there.  It was so normal to me that I never wanted to awaken.  In fact, it angered me that I had to wake up at all.  When I heard about the soldiers diagnosed with PTSD, and their struggle to have a decent night's sleep, I was confounded because it is like I am the total opposite of them.  My nightmares are more in the awakening state than the sleep state.  The world is a war zone to me.  My sensitivity to my environment is often times nerve-wracking.  The first thing I wanted to do in an uncomfortable moment is go to sleep.

Author Linda Diane Wattley writes about her life, from childhood to adult.  She writes of the horrors of being molested by someone close, watching the fights between her parents, the desertion of her mother and older brother, leaving she and her younger brothers in the presents of her father who later brings another family into their lives.  She shares all of her feelings as these events take place as well as the other horrors live deals her as an adult.

As I read Soldier With A Backpack I couldn't help but relate to many of the events that took place in her life and how some of those events affected my life as an adult.  I know very few people who haven't commented on how 'hard their childhood was' myself included, but after reading what this author went through I can only thank God for the life I had as a child and my life as it was and is now as an adult.  I know several veterans who suffer with PTSD but never quite understood it until now.  I guess I also never realized that you don't have to be a veteran to suffer this mind fogging disorder.  There is one piece that the author included in the book that I must share.  It's actually by a Jim Kwik and fits all of us, with or without PTSD.

Here it is "If an egg is broken by outside force, Life ends.  If broken by inside force, Life begins.  Great things always begin from inside."  If we could all remember and live by these two short sentences then there is nothing that we can't handle and deal with throughout our lives.  This is a book that I recommend to everyone!  Including young adults.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

Golden Girl - Mary Kennedy, Author



Oatmeal bars(Mary Kennedy's own special recipe)

Ingredients:
1 and 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 and 1/2 cups oats, either quick cook or regular
1 cup brown sugar (I use light brown)
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
8 oz of jam (I usually use 14 oz)
1 and 3/4 sticks butter

Directions:
Mix dry ingredients. Cut in chilled butter. Place half the mixture in a 9 x 13 inch pan. Press down with fingertips. Spread jam on top. Spread the remaining oatmeal mixture on top. Bake at 350 for about 40 minutes. Cool and cut into squares or bars.


Golden Girl - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat, Think With Your Taste Buds: A Book and A Dish

Amber Fielding may be young but that doesn't stop her from enjoying a life of luxury to its fullest.  Her father, who owns one of the best hotels in South Beach, has made sure she wants for nothing but also that a price comes with everything which includes her working for what she has.

Her beauty won her a feature in Teen Vogue and she has now become an item of publicity but the publicity manager her father found for her isn't quite what she had dreamed of.  Then she meets Nick Crawford who is doing a documentary on the architect of South Beach.  Not only is Nick 'hot' he also seems to have an attraction to Amber and has promised to include shots of she and her best friends in his documentary.  But... there is something not quite right.  He seems to be attracted to her friend Shay too.  And when he sends a beautiful arrangement of flowers to her friend Zia, that really struck a note with Amber.  He was becoming her boyfriend, wasn't he?

Being the owner of a hotel like the Fielding often has its perks.  One of the perks turned out to be Johnny Wilde and his band The Changelings booking the whole 11th floor of the hotel.  So when Amber is invited to the after party she can't wait.  This was going to be fun, or was it?

Author Mary Kennedy has written a book that follows Amber Fielding and her best friends through good times as well as bad.  She has given Amber character with morals as she takes her through trust and believing in people, but also shows how that trust can sometimes be deceiving.  This book is one that I feel most young ladies would enjoy reading and even learn a little from.


Tuesday, August 26, 2014

And Don't Bring Jeremy - Marilyn Levinson


Cauliflower Casserole
(A Marilyn Levinson Special)

1 medium head of cauliflower
1 red pepper
1/2 large onion
4 mushrooms
4 eggs
1/4 cup of milk or yogurt
2/3 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
3 tablespoons of slivered almonds
1/4 cup of bread crumbs
to taste:
salt
pepper
fresh cilantro, cut up
fresh parsley cut up
red pepper flakes
nutmeg
cinnamon
1/4 cup of Parmesan cheese

Cut the cauliflower into small pieces. Discard core. Cook in microwave until still firm. (Shall we say al dente?) If done the day before, refrigerate cauliflower.  Spray a deep casserole with oil. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Cut up and sauté the red pepper, onion, and mushrooms in olive oil, and set aside.  Beat eggs In mixing bowl. Add milk or yogurt, the cheese, breadcrumbs.   Mix together, then add the sautéed veggies and cauliflower.   Mix together, then add slivered almonds, fresh herbs, salt, pepper, and pepper flakes.   Mix and cover with Parm. cheese, a 1/2 teaspoon of nutmeg and cinnamon.   Bake covered 40-50 minutes.


Be creative! Use broccoli instead of cauliflower, basil instead of cilantro, or a different kind of cheese. 


And Don't Bring Jeremy - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

"Adam?”  
I turned around to see what Eddie wanted.  
“We— Mark and Danny and me—well, we were thinking of going out for pizza before the game tomorrow.  At Gino's.  Want to come?”  
"Sure, why not?  I'll check with my mom and let you know."  I shrugged my shoulders, trying to shake the uneasy feeling that just took hold of me.  What was wrong?  
"Great.  Meet us there at twelve.  Bring your bicycle. Then we'll ride over to the field early and practice before the rest of the team comes”  
I suddenly knew.  “All right."  In spite of myself, Mom's drilling me to try to include Jeremy whenever I could won out.  "But is it alright if I— “ 
"And Adam—“
“Hmm?”  
His voice cut across my question. "And don't bring Jeremy. Okay?"

Sixth grader Adam and his older brother Jeremy are new to the neighborhood, and Adam is finding it hard to make friends. When Adam joins a Little League baseball team, his mother sees to it that Jeremy, who has disabilities and no interest in baseball, is placed on the same team. Because Jeremy is awkward and always doing something to embarrass Adam, Adam is ashamed to have people know that Jeremy is his brother. When Eddie Gordon, the coach’s son, befriends Adam, he makes it very clear that he wants no part of Jeremy. 

Adam and Eddie spend more time together, and Adam finds himself saying nothing when Eddie calls Jeremy names and picks on him. Jeremy tells Adam that Eddie has done some bad things, but Adam defends Eddie. And then Eddie accuses Jeremy of ruining the sets for the sixth grade’s play. Adam learns a few home truths about Eddie Gordon and just how strong the bond between brothers can be.

When I started reading this book I felt the pain that Adam and Jeremy both felt. This book brings to light the emotions and difficulties children who have siblings like Jeremy must face.  Even though this is a book written for children/young adults, to me it is one that needs to be read by all young people who have a slower sibling. It needs to be read by all parents that have a child with any kind of handicap. It needs to be read by every teacher.  Actually... this book needs to be a #1 seller and read by everyone, young and old, whether you do or don't have dealings with a disabled or challenged child OR adult. I really feel it will help you to see that person in a totally different light. This isn't a hard book to read. I read it in 2 nights but learned a life's worth of knowledge.



Friday, July 4, 2014

Chick and the Homestead Chickens of Grymme Creek Hollow - David Boyette, Author


Tater Jack
(A Chick Special)

Tater Jack is similar to Latkes a Yiddish potato patty but with a slight difference.  In Tater Jack you don't use any flour or corn starch

1.  Take 2 medium sized unpeeled potatoes and boil them in a pan of water until done.  You can nuke them in the microwave or bake them in the oven but boiling is better.
2.  Mash the potatoes in a bowl, skins and all.
3.  Add just enough buttermilk and mix until everything is the consistency of paste.
4.  Preheat a skillet with oil for about 10 minutes on medium heat.  Bacon drippings also work really well.
5.  When the pan is hot, spoon out the desired size patty in the skillet and let them cook for about 10-12 minutes, flip them over and cook another 10-12 minutes.  If you add cheese or onion, allow 3 minutes more for cooking.  When done the Tater Jacks should have a golden brown crust.  Serve up with the toppings or condiments of your choice - sour cream works great.


Chick and the Homestead Chickens of Grymme Creek Hollow - Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

Many years ago a young man from the city decided to be a pioneer so he loaded up his belongings and started a homestead in Grymme Creek Hollow which, by the way, was in the Ouachita Mountains.  It didin't take long for the young man to decide this wasn't for him so he packed up his personal belongings and moved back to the city.  Legend has it that the chickens he left behind decided to make their own homestead out of what was left behind.  These chickens became the Homestead Chickens of Grymme Creek Hollow.

The homestead chickens were divided up into family groups known as broods.  In each brook there was a Mother Hen who was in charge.  The roosters in the brood were not in charge.... Among some of the more influential broods of the homestead were Midhens which were a combination of killer security guards and nannies.  The leader was the Superior Mother Hen - Hypatia Rosecomb.  She is advised by a group of Mother Hens which make up the Council of Aunties.  There were also different classes of chickens which determined their pecking order.  Like most, there were the upper class chickens and there were the lowerclass which were called coopies or coop chickens.

The Pinfeathers family was the smallest and poorest chickens of the coop.  They were June Pinefeather, the Mother Hen; Walter Pinfeather, her rooster; and of course their chick which they named Chick.  Chick was a born explorer.  Nothing amused him more than running around investigating everything that made up the homestead, even if it took him to the outskirts of the upperclass.  But his real trouble came when he spotted a chick younger than him being bullied by another chick.  His defense of this chick, named Peq, brought the anger of the bully's mother who just happened to be Aunty Hysidia, the 2nd most powerful Aunty in the Council.  Second only to the Superior Mother Hen.  Her anger has her pressing charges against Chick's father Walter for what boils down to theft and treason.

I read a lot of books but this book is one that I can't say enough about.  We spend our lives hearing about bullying, discrimination, politics, and everyday life in general, but after a while it just becomes words that we hear but don't listen to.  As I read Chick and the Homestead Chickens I would be reminded of things happening around me.  As Peq is bullied I pictured the kids on the news that attempted to kill their friend.  As I read about the order of the broods, I pictured the different housing districts we have within every city.  As I read about the Aunty Council, I pictured the court systems we have in effect.  And as I read about the Superior Mother Hen, I pictured our presidents and their cabinets.  This book, which made me laugh also made me pay attention to my own surroundings.  This is a book that can be read by those of all ages and they will all learn something from it.  OH YEAH!  You do realize I learned this from a Chicken!  Great Book!

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Talon on the Wing - Gigi Sedlmayer, Author

Semmelknödel    Dumplings
Beilagenknödeln
Semmelknödeln sind die ideale Beilage zu saftigen, sossigen Hauptspeisen.
Sie nehmen z.B. den Bratensaft gut auf und vermischen sich geschmacklich sehr gut mit dem Hauptgeschmack.
Mit diesem einfachen Rezept sollte es auch Ungeübten gelingen, leckere Semmelknödel selbst zu kochen.
Zutaten:  Ingredients:

(für 6 - 8 Knödel) -  ( for 6 – 8 )
6 Semmeln (Brötchen) vom Vortag  -  (6 buns form the day before)
1/8 l Milch (heiß)  -  (1/8 l milk)
1 kleine Zwiebel  -   (I small onion)
30 g Butter oder Margarine -   (30 gr Butter or Margarine)
2 EL gehackte Petersilie (glatt) -   (2 spoons parsley)
2 Eier  -  (2 eggs)
Muskatnuß gerieben  - ( nutmeg, shaved)
Pfeffer gemahlen   -   (Pepper)
Salz   -   (salt)
etwas Mehl   -  (some flower)
Zubereitung:   -   (Method)
Semmeln in dünne Scheiben schneiden und mit heißer Milch übergießen.
(Cut buns in thin slices then spill the hot milk over it)
Zwiebel in Würfel schneiden und in der heißen Butter oder Margarine glasig dünsten.
(Cut onions finely then roast in the butter or margarine.)
Petersilie kurz mitdünsten.
(Put the parsley with it)
Gedünstete Zwiebel/Petersilie unter die Semmelmasse mischen, die Eier untermischen, etwas ziehen lassen und anschließend kneten.
(Mix the onions into the buns mixture, then mix the eggs in. Let it stand for a while then knead the whole mixture with your hand.)
Bei Verwendung von trockenen Semmelwürfeln die Masse länger ziehen lassen und eventuell 1 - 2 EL Milch oder Wasser in die Knödelmasse geben.
(The mixture should be just right, not too thick and not too thin. If it is too thick then the dumplings will become too hard. If it is too thin, put some more bread in. or if it is too thick then put some more milk in.)

Mit Muskatnuß, Pfeffer und Salz kräftig abschmecken. Eventuell etwas Mehl über die Masse stauben um eine bessere Konsistenz zu erreichen (nicht zu viel, sonst werden die Knödel hart).
(To test put into the mixture nutmeg, pepper and salt) 
Mit feuchten Händen 6 - 8 etwa gleich große, feste Knödel formen und in Mehl wälzen.
(With wet hands form about 6 – 8 dumplings. They should all be the same size. Roll the dumplings in a bit flower.)
Ich selbst forme die Knödel neben leicht fließendem Wasser: wasche mir die Hände und forme einen Knödel mit feuchten Händen. Wälze den Knödel in Mehl auf einem Teller und lege ihn auf eine mehlbestaubte Fläche. Wasche mir wieder die Hände, forme den nächsten Knödel, ...
In kochendes Wasser legen und 20 Minuten ziehen lassen (nicht wallend kochen!).
(Boil water in a pot they all will fit in and put them in. When the water boils, put them slowly in and let them in for 20 minutes. Don’t let the water bubble all the time. )
Dabei darf der Topf nicht ganz zugedeckt sein! (z.B. Kochlöffel zwischen Topf und Deckel)
Turn down the heat and put the lid back on, but only halfway with maybe the wooden spoon between it)
Die Semmelknödel mit einem Schaumlöffel aus dem Wasser nehmen und baldigst servieren.
(When ready, take them out and enjoy them.)
 
 
Talon, On the Wing – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

Crayn narrowed his eyes. ‘What is it, Mat?’
‘I just remembered something form yesterday. It was so funny, you know, when Talon stood by the door and banged his wings on the side of the door?’
‘Yes?’
‘He folded his wings to go through the door. Remember? But he probably wasn’t thinking about it. Neither did I. But since I was lying on him, his wings went over me, covering me. Not completely, because he stopped doing it when he felt me under them, I guess. So, I was, for a short time, buried under his wings. It felt so, so … it felt so warm, so secure, so safe and protected. Just lovely. Yes, it really was.’ A bright grin parted her face when she looked at her father.
‘Oh yeah, I can imagine it. When he folds his wings … yes, he does that.’ Crayn suddenly doubled up in laughter. “I actually saw it, but didn’t think about that.’ When they finally stopped laughing, they heard a crowd yelling.


Matica actually flys on the back of a Condor but not just any Condor, one she actually raised from an egg. She, her Mum, Dad and brother Aikon live in a remote village of Pucara in Peru. Her whole family was accepted by the Indians but not her. They shunned and avoided her because she was different. Matica has a growth problem. At the age of 5 she looked as though she was only 2. This to the Indians was a ‘bad’ sign so they kept their distance and refused to befriend her. But that all changed when she accidently ended up on the back of her Condor that she had named Talon. She then became someone special, not to just the Indians in her village but as word spread, to villages all around. People came from all over to hear her talk about her experience while soaring through the sky on Talon. Everyone loved her, that is except one. His name was Alexander and he would walk away from her when she tried to speak to him and become his friend. Puzzled, as well as hurt by his rejection, Matica became determined to learn why he hated her so much. Was he jealous or did he not believe that she actually flew? When Matica finally did learn his secret she was dumbfounded. She learned that he had a brother that was like her – little. But his brother had died and what bothered him most was how and why his brother died. But it went deeper because Alex blamed himself for his brother’s death. He should have prevented it from happening. So can Matica open Alex up and help him?


This is the 2nd volume in the Talon series and I have had the pleasure of reading both. The lessons taught within both books are priceless and very much needed in today’s world. The story teaches trust, which we all need more of. It teaches judgment, not just in what you say or do but also in how you actually judge others. It teaches patience, which is something I lack. It teaches love and forgiveness which everyone could use more of. This is a wonderful book to start reading as a bedtime story for young kids as well as a great story for older children to read on their own. Yes, we adults can learn from it too so I recommend it to all ages. And I must add that the story itself is one that I totally enjoyed too. A young girl that has befriended not only Talon who she raised but also his parent Condors who stick by her side as well as hers and show their appreciation for what she did for them.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

The Map - Boni Lonnsburry​, Author

Asparagus and Mushroom Tarts  
Originally from Bon Appétit | April 2009

A simple but sophisticated starter: Puff pastry squares are topped with a bright spring mixture of asparagus spears, fresh shiitakes, and crème fraîche.

Yield: Makes 8
 
Ingredients:
1 17.3-ounce package frozen puff pastry (2 sheets), thawed
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) unsalted butter
12 ounces fresh shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, caps cut into 1/4-inch-wide strips
1 teaspoon coarse kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper, divided
1 pound slender asparagus spears, trimmed, cut on diagonal into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 1/2 teaspoons finely grated lemon peel
1/2 cup crème fraîche*
1/2 cup (packed) coarsely grated Gruyère cheese (about 2 ounces)
Fresh thyme sprigs (for garnish)
 
Preparation:
Roll out each pastry sheet on work surface to 10-inch square. Cut each into 4 squares. Using small knife, score 1/2-inch border (do not cut through pastry) around inside edges of each square. Arrange squares on 2 rimmed baking sheets. DO AHEAD: Can be made 1 day ahead. Cover and chill.
Melt butter in heavy large skillet over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Sauté until tender and lightly browned, about 4 minutes. Transfer mushrooms to large bowl; cool 15 minutes. Add asparagus, chopped thyme, lemon peel, 3/4 teaspoon coarse salt, and 1/4 teaspoon pepper to mushrooms. Mix in crème fraîche and cheese. DO AHEAD: Filling can be made 1 day ahead. Cover; chill.
Preheat to 400°F. Mound filling atop pastry squares, leaving 1/2-inch plain border.
Bake tarts 20-22 minutes until crusts are puffed and golden and filling is cooked through. Remove from cookie sheet and cut into 4 pieces each with a pizza cutter. Garnish with thyme sprigs.
Boni’s note:
I absolutely LOVE this recipe!! It is easy, it looks amazing, it tastes like you slaved for days, it is so delicious you’ll crave it in the middle of the night, and it freezes like a dream! What’s more to ask for?
 
 
The Map – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish
 
 
…There are plenty of people who have tons of money but it’s never enough…they are never satisfied, never secure and they never feel truly abundant.
There are people who have the spouse, but not the trust, the support, the respect and the ever-deepening love.
There are people who have careers that they thought would make them happy, but they don’t feel free, creative and excited and they aren’t having fun.
The things are not what bring you the essence (the wonderful, positive feeling states).  The essence (the wonderful positive feelings states is what brings you the things…
 
 
By now I’m sure you’re asking yourself, what exactly does this have to do with a Map?  Well, The Map isn’t just any map.  It’s not one that you can use to map out a trip, or is it?  Actually the answer is yes and no.  You won’t find the highway numbers, little towns and cities you’ll travel through nor your mileage distance but you will find your destination and how to get there.  Through following the instructions given in The Map you don’t create your ‘wish’ list you create your ‘intent’ list.  And this goes for everything from relationships to jobs to cars, to travel and to everything in between.   How?  You ask and then believe.  Now that doesn’t mean half-heartedly believe.  You must truly believe.   You must want it strong enough that it is no longer a wish but an intent.  Again, how?  The Map will map the way for you to have what you intend to have simply by following it’s steps and believing in your own self. 
 
 
Does this work?  A couple years ago I wanted to take a trip to Utah.  I lived there a couple years when I was a child and wanted to see if my childhood memories were real or just made up by my mind over the years.  Now, how to I afford a trip like this?  I thought about it and thought about it and became determined, or should I say intent, upon making this trip.  Then it hit me.  I was a smoker for 44 years.  If I quit smoking I could easily afford this trip.  I had tried to quit smoking a hundred times and nothing seemed to work but I was determined to make this trip.  Through my intent to quit smoking and my intent to make this trip I did both!  And in the long run I did even more that made me very happy.  I gave up something that was harmful to my health, I made the trip, I saw relatives that I had not seen in 50 years and will probably never see again, but the biggest accomplishment was that when I became intent on that one trip I proved to myself that I can do and have anything if I really put my mind to it and make it an intent instead of a wish.  So, since reading The Map I’ve ‘mapped’ out other intents that I have all the confidence that I will acquire along the way.

Monday, February 11, 2013

'Til the Streetligh​ts Came On - Daniel J. Porter, Author

 
Meatloaf
(A Daniel J. Porter Special)

2 lbs. ground round steak
2 eggs
1 1/2 cups bread crumbs
Spice blend
1/2 cup ketchup
1/2 cup milk
1 8 oz. can tomato sauce

Spice blend:
2 tsp. dried mustard
2 tsp. paprika
1 1/2 tsp. salt
1 1/2 tsp. dried thyme
1 1/2 tsp. basil
1 tsp. black pepper
1 tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. onion powder

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix thoroughly in order given. Top with tomato sauce. Place in 9 x 5 loaf pan. Bake for 60 minutes. Serves 6.
 
 
‘Til the Streetlights Came On – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish
 
6:30 a.m.: The thud of the paper on the front porch – two hours until ‘game time.’ (It took until 8:30 for the morning commute traffic to clear our streets, which would then remain virtually car-free until 4:30 that afternoon.)
7:00 a.m.: The gurgle of your family’s coffee pot churning out its black gold – ninety minutes until game time.
7:30 a.m.: The roar of Mr. Pruschetti’s Plymouth wagon… T-Minus sixty minutes and counting.
 
Cued by this melliferous morning melee, we headed down for a bowl of frosted something-or-others and listened for a signal from which we drew further indications of what the day held in store. Our communication network was closer to the beating of tribal drums than today’s web of technology. We moved to the sounds of our world with sublime synchronicity. Noises that seemed inconsequential to others were Morse code to our awaiting ears. We simply listened to the world around us – and we knew what to do.
 
Now those were the days! If you were a kid growing up from the 1950s to the 1980s, you can very possibly relate to this. This was the time when we had no cell phones, no texting, and no computer games. This was the time when we actually ‘played.’ There were organized sports for those lucky enough to live in an area that offered them or if you family could afford to pay for you to participate but for those who couldn’t, your games were organized by those who played. Sometimes it even became the one who had the ball or bat or glove. As to where you played, a lot of times it was in the road or if you were lucky, the vacant lot. Those were the days of not only having real, honest fun but also the days of self teaching and learning lessons that would follow you through the rest of your life.
 
As Author Daniel J. Porter spreads out his childhood stories, I can’t help but think about the kids of today. As we expand more and more each day into the computer world I can’t help but feel that today’s kids are missing out on so much. Other than technology, what are today’s kids learning? Can a computer game teach them team work? Can a computer game teach them respect for others? Can a computer game teach them to share? Sadly I fell the answer to these questions have to be answered with a no. Yes there are organized sports and events that kids can participate in but the accomplishment of organizing, bring the players together, setting up the rules of fairness and most of all, making those friendships and memories that will last a lifetime can’t be found in a computer game.
 
As I read ‘Til the Streetlights Came On I took a wonderful walk down memory lane. It also made me feel sorry for the kids of today. They are missing out on so much. Maybe, just maybe, this book will help wake us up and get the kids outside where the real fun begins. It’s a book I recommend be read, especially by young parents.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Time Out - Mary Allen Sochet, Author

 
 
Latkes in honor of Moishe.
 
Ingredients:
1 pound potatoes
  • 1/2 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cup olive oil


Accompaniments: sour cream and applesauce


Preheat oven to 250°F.
Peel potatoes and coarsely grate by hand, transferring to a large bowl of cold water as grated. Soak potatoes 1 to 2 minutes after last batch is added to water, then drain well in a colander.
Spread grated potatoes and onion on a kitchen towel and roll up jelly-roll style. Twist towel tightly to wring out as much liquid as possible. Transfer potato mixture to a bowl and stir in egg and salt.
Heat 1/4 cup oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet over moderately high heat until hot but not smoking. Working in batches of 4 latkes, spoon 2 tablespoons potato mixture per latke into skillet, spreading into 3-inch rounds with a fork. Reduce heat to moderate and cook until undersides are browned, about 5 minutes. Turn latkes over and cook until undersides are browned, about 5 minutes more. Transfer to paper towels to drain and season with salt. Add more oil to skillet as needed. Keep latkes warm on a wire rack set in a shallow baking pan in oven.
Cooks' notes:·Latkes may be made up to 8 hours ahead. Reheat on a rack set over a baking sheet in a 350°F oven, about 5 minutes.
·Grating the potatoes, soaking them briefly in water, and then squeezing out the liquid (as we've done here) keeps the batter from turning brown too quickly.
Time Out – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish
 
I never thought
it would turn out this way.
Growing old,
fat, wrinkled, gray.
Going to funerals
way more than weddings.
Watching our friends’ children die.
 
When we were kids
back in the North Country,
we would twirl our way
up Broad Street,
heading home
from the movies
and Confession
on Saturday afternoons.
 
Everything seemed
so easy, so clear
The movies ended happy every after,
The priest gave
short penances.
Three Hail Marys
One Our Father.
A piece of cake
 
As I read Time Out I couldn’t help but relate to many of the memories Author Mary Allen Sochet brought to my own mind. She talked about her life with Marvin, with his ability to never be on time, how he stood up for his rights and the rights of others, and how this standing up even landed him in jail at the age of 75. You see, Marvin was a ‘baby boomer’ that grew up during the times of flower children, hippies and the Viet Nam War. Through her writing I can picture the protests, changes in time, the changes in values and the changes in ourselves as we grow old. I can see these because I too am a ‘baby boomer’ that lived through these times. Some were happy, some were sad and some were simply bad.
 
Time Out is a series of poem ‘stories’ that trace the author’s life from the beginning to the end with her beloved husband Marvin. In Time Out, Mary Sochet expresses her own way of coping with the ups and down of life and the death of a loved one. It’s one of the most touching books I’ve read in some time.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Until Today: Stories and Poems on Life as I Know It - Jerry M. White, Author


Corn Bread Pie
(One of Jerry's Favorite Dishes)

1 lb. ground beef
1 can condensed tomato soup
1 t salt
1 T chili powder
1/2 chopped green pepper
1 lg. onion, chopped
11/2 c water
3/4 t black pepper
1 can whole kernel corn (12 oz.), drained

Brown beef & onion well. Combine ingredients in skillet. Mix well and let simmer 15 minutes. Turn into greased sasserole. Top with corn bread. Bake in moderate oven 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Corn Bread Topping

3/4 c cornmeal
1 T flour
1 egg
1 T bacon
1 T sugar
1 1/2 t baking powder
1/2 c milk

Mix all well and pour onto top of beef mixture. It will sink into mixture but will rise as it bakes and cook crispy.

This is a treat to try.

Until Today: Stories and Poems on Life as I Know It – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; Think With Your Taste Buds; A Book and A Dish

My Honor to be His

The more I see in this life of mine
The more I see that nothing is mine
The more I see in this life I live
The more I see how much I can give

My life is honored by who owns the glory
My life is owned by who writes the story
I go where I’m sent; I go where I’m led
I want only to say what He wants said

I really try to do everything I should
It hurts me inside to not even do the things I could
My life feels, and is, sometimes out of control
It is so very hard to always be so very bold

What honor I give Him through my life every day
It is an honor to give it every way
He honors me with love and His forgiveness is mine
But the honor and the privilege to serve Him is all mine

It is through this service that my life has meaning
It is on this honor my salvation is leaning
My price has been paid by His life laid down
I will do the things I should without a single frown

Jerry M. White wrote this poem in 2004 and it has to be one of my favorites.  In so few words he really says it all. 

Until Today isn’t your typical book of poems.  Jerry White starts each poem(s) off with a little story explaining not only what they are about but what prompted him to write them.  He takes us through his spiritual world with poems like the one above.  We go through his family world with poems such as Audacity.  This is the story of his grandmother being rescued from a mental hospital.  His poem What Have We Done (another one of my favorites) brings to light what has been lost with the changes of time.  He walks us through the loss of his grandchildren to cancer and the true meaning of family through Grandma’s Apron.  He takes us on through life in the world of work with poems such as Light the Fuse and then through memories with The Last Day of School.  And to tie it all up he gives us the world of the Living and the Dead as he points out the problems in Nameless Numbers and concludes with Pillaged which leaves no doubt that our government is breaking.

I’ve read and written reviews for Author Jerry M. White before and have to say that with each he gets better and better. Seldom do I read one that doesn’t hit a cord from my own life and own feelings.  I thoroughly enjoy his works of art.

Friday, June 29, 2012

The Stovepipe - Bonnie E. Virag, Author


FishTacos with Mango Salsa and Cilantro Lime Sauce
(A Bonnie Favorite)

Ingredients
1 lb. flaky white fish, such as halibut, tilapia, sole, or snapper (we used Amberjack)
4 Tbsp. fresh lime juice
2 Tbsp. vegetable oil
2 Tbsp. soy sauce
10 to 12 corn tortillas
3 cups shredded cabbage

For Lime Sauce:
2 tablespoons mayonnaise
1/2 cup low-fat yogurt
2 tablespoons fresh lime juice
1 chipotle chile in adobo sauce, finely chopped
1 garlic clove, finely chopped or pressed
Salt

For Mango Salsa:
1 bell pepper (red, yellow, and/or orange), deseeded and chopped into 1/4-inchsquares
1/2 small red onion, finely chopped
1 jalapeno pepper, deseeded and diced
2 just-ripe mangoes, peeled and chopped into 1/2-inch square chunks
1 handful cilantro, washed, dried, destemmed, and chopped
2 cloves garlic, minced
Juice of 1 lime
Salt to taste

Directions
Prepare the fish marinade by combining the fresh lime juice with the vegetableoil and soy sauce in a rectangular glass or ceramic dish. Add the fish, turn tocoat, and leave to marinate while you prepare the rest of the ingredients.
Prepare the chipotle-lime sauce bycombining the mayonnaise, yogurt, lime juice, chipotle chile, and chopped garlic in a bowl. Season to taste with salt.
Prepare mango salsa by mixing all ingredients together in a medium-large bowl and season to taste with salt.
Remove fish from the marinade and grill or saute until cooked through. Warm the tortillas, either in the oven, microwave, or saute in oil. Set out individual bowls of the sauce, salsa, and shredded cabbage.
For each individual taco, place someof the fish (breaking off chunks of the cooked fillets) on a tortilla, drizzle with the chipotle-lime sauce, and top with cabbage and mango salsa.

The Stovepipe – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; A Book and A Dish; Think With Your Taste Buds

…we saw a large, black automobile drive into our lane.  It pulled slowly into the backyard and stopped beside the house where we were playing.  We all stood frozen.  In a poor rural area, it was rare to see an automobile on the road, let alone have one pull into our own yard.  Muggs must have know it meant trouble, for she quickly opened the cellar door and herded us all inside.  But it was too late, for she had been spotted.  No sooner had the door been slammed shut than it was flung open, exposing my sisters and me as we huddled fearfully inside.  “Come out,” a man said as he tugged on our arms, pulling us out one by one.  As we hurried to Muggs’ side, the man said, “We’d like to speak with your mother.”  Muggs shook her head.  “I’m sorry, but she ain’t home right now.”   At that, without saying another word, he and a woman who had come with him grabbed my sisters and me and pushed us, kicking and screaming, into the backseat of the car.  They then rounded up Bobby and shoved him in beside us.

Bonnie Virag was one of 2 sets of twins birthed by her mother Flossie Bell Mudford.  Flossie Bell had a total of 18 children of which Bonnie can remembered 14 counting herself.  By the time Bonnie and her twin sister Betty, her twin sisters Jean and Joan and her brother Bobby were taken from the home 6 of the older children had already left.  Most of the girls’ care was provided by one of her older sisters, Margaret which they fondly called Muggs.  But due to Muggs being a child herself, Children’s Service felt they had no choice but to take the younger ones from the home, leaving them all feeling lost and alone.

When I started reading The Stovepipe, I had just finished another autobiography by a lady who, along with her siblings, had been placed in an orphanage.  The trials and mistreatment they went through was heartbreaking.  I truly thought that children placed in foster homes had to be better.  That isn’t necessarily true.  Bonnie and her siblings ended up on a Tobacco farm and put to work as if they were mere slaves.  They were housed in the attic and not allowed to come into the house except to go to their rooms.  Meals were served after the family had finished eating and heating in their attic rooms consisted of The Stovepipe that ran up through the ceiling.  Their living conditions, mistreatment by the family members, their lack of love and even their simplest needs were non-existing.  It really took some strong willed individuals to survive what these children were forced to suffer through.

As I read The Stovepipe, I grew to admire Bonnie and her siblings.  She is a woman I would love to sit down with and simply listen to as she tells stories of her childhood.  Some of the stories within her autobiography would have been funny had the consequences for their actions not been so severe.  I couldn’t help but laugh when I read about the yard being covered with paper the girls had hidden within the rafters and uncovered when the roofers started work.  But I wanted to cry when the foster family punished them for their innocent deed. 

I can only hope and pray that things have changed since Bonnie and her siblings were brought up in the system of foster care.  No child should ever be inflicted with excessive pain and sorrow, especially after the a child has already been hurt by the loss of their own family or the lack of ever knowing one.  These children should be treated as the special people they really are. 

The Stovepipe is a book that EVERY parent should read and hopefully stress to their own children, the heartbreak of being in the system.  Bonnie and her sisters should be very proud of themselves for being survivors and not allowing their experiences to weaken them but to make them stronger and better people.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Confessions of a Crazy Fox - Anna Maria Kolojaco Mullins, Author




Suzanne’s Pudding Pie
(Anna's daughter-in-law's recipe)

1 stick butter
1 cup sifted flour
1 cup chopped pecans
9½ oz Cool Whip
8 oz cream cheese
1 sm. box instant vanilla pudding
1 sm. box instant chocolate pudding
2 ¾ cups cold milk
1 Hershey bar

Combine butter, flour, and nuts. Press into the bottom of an ungreased 13X9 inch glass baking dish. Bake in oven for 20 minutes at 350°. Blend one cup Cool Whip with creamed cheese and spread over cooked crust. Combine both puddings with the milk (23/4 cups) following the directions on the package. Put this over the cream cheese mixture. Follow with the rest of the Cool Whip. Top with grated Hershey bar.

(My daughter-in-law, Suzanne Mullins, first brought this treat to a family gathering many years ago and the family has requested it for every gathering since and gave it that name. I’m not sure if it was originally a Cool Whip recipe or not but I often substitute whipped cream and make it outrageously decadent.)


Confessions of a Crazy Fox – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat; A Book and A Dish and Think With Your Taste Buds

‘I stewed about it until New Year’s Day, 2010, and then I wrote Jimmy a long letter pointing out a lot of the things he and Jeannette had done to hurt me the last decade and if he didn’t put a stop to it, I was going to go ahead and release my story.  I had decided not to take the last offer I had, after Jim was diagnosed with cancer, but my sister inspired me to try again.  I knew I wouldn’t hear from my brother and posted on Facebook that New Year’s Day that my resolution was to publish my family memoir.  It did shock a few family members who couldn’t imagine what I had to write about or why.  I figured if Jeannette’s story was the one our extended family had been hearing all these years, perhaps it was finally time to broadcast mine.  That shouldn’t really surprise any of them.  They all know I write when I’m pissed and believe me, Jeannette pushed me way past that point this last time.’

I never research nor read other reviews before starting a new book and when I was sent a copy of Anna Mullis’ book Confessions of a Crazy Fox, I actually expected it to be a mystery, murder, suspense.  What I never expected it to be was the story of her life.  My first thoughts were borrrring!   And since I will decline a book before I’ll write a bad review, I almost turned this book down.  But I always give a book, any book, a chance and at least try to read the first 25-50 pages hoping it will appeal to me and that’s exactly what I did with Confessions of a Crazy Fox.

I read the first couple of chapters as Anna talked about her childhood, she sure had a streak of defiance!  I continued reading as she introduced her ‘guardian angel’ that saved her from being bitten by a snake.  When I read about her cousin Bobo I actually started feeling that I knew him.  Her parents turned out to be the kind we all wish for.  Their love for their family, friends and neighbors was something many only dream about.  Then tragedy hits, first with the death of her Dad and later her Mother and with each also comes the separation of family.  I’ve always said that the 2 things that bring out the worse in a family are weddings and funerals.  I’ve decided to add another to that list - money. 

Reading about the greed between the siblings actually reminded me of a few incidents within my own life after the death of my own parents.  I’m sure we can all relate to this greed at some level, either through our own experiences or through the pains we’ve watched others experience.  I personally feel that greed is the #1 cause of family problems throughout the world.  And greed isn’t just about money.  While reading Confessions of A Crazy Fox I finally realized that greed is nothing but jealousy.  Someone gets just a bit more, got a bit more or will get a bit more, bringing on a jealousy called greed.

I’m sure that by now you have realized I read the whole book.  Actually I had trouble putting it down.  It firmly points out that if you make someone mad enough your sorrow might just come back to haunt you by way of a book telling the whole world just how greedy you really are.  In Confessions of a Crazy Fox, Anna Mullins doesn’t just blow the top on her siblings she also includes her own sins throughout her life, and her honesty in admitting her own faults is one of the things that made this book so interesting.

Monday, January 2, 2012

Things That Make Me Nuts - Annette Bergman, Author

 
Almond Joy Cake
(An Annette Bergman Favorite)

Cake: 1 Chocolate  cake mix
            1 package instant chocolate pudding mix
Foe cake: Mix as directed on cake mix, adding chocolate pudding mix
Bake in a greased and floured cookie sheet according to directions on cake box.

First topping: 1 cup sugar
                        1 cup milk
                       24 large marshmallows
                       14 oz coconut
Bring sugar and milk to a quick boil. Melt marshmallows in hot mixture. Stir in coconut.  Pour over cake.

Second topping:  1 ½ cups sugar
                            1 cup evaporated milk
                            1 stick butter 1 package chocolate chips
                            1 ½ cups nuts (almonds or pecans)
Bring sugar, milk and butter to a quick boil. Add chocolate chips and stir until melted, stir in nuts. Pour over cake.

Things That Make Me NUTS – Review by Martha A. Cheves, Author of Stir, Laugh, Repeat and Think With Your Taste Buds – Desserts

Ball Games

‘A lot of Sunday evenings, I plan on watching a movie or maybe a favorite show and it will be delayed by an hour, an hour and a half or more so they can finish a ball game.  I’m not a late night person and I don’t want to stay up until twelve watching a movie that was supposed to come on at nine and is over at eleven.

Sports fans just think about this for a minute.  Let’s say your ball game came on at seven and you turned on the television to find there’s a live Quilting Bee in progress and it won’t be over until the last knot is tied.  There isn’t a half time, but it will be interrupted by frequent breaks that will include potty breaks, coffee breaks, snacks and an occasional interruption from a cell phone.  All quilting will have to stop until the breaks are over, hands must be washed after eating donuts and nothing can continue until the cell phone conversation is over.  Can you just imagine the turmoil that would cause in your living room when you were expecting to watch your favorite teams play?’

Apparently, like Author Annette Bergman, I’m not a sports fan so I can truly relate to this Thing That Makes Me Nuts.  I even hate it when I’m doing something else and have someone watching a game, yelling at me, ‘watch this.  You have to see this play!’  Even if I humor them and watch the replay I have no idea as to what I’m watching nor what’s even going on with what I’m watching.  So yes, I do understand her frustration.

I also understand her other frustrations and believe that if you’re a female, you too can actually say ‘yeah!  That really gets to me too!’  Have you ever wished someone would write a ‘Husband Hand Book for Dummies?’  They do need a few directions now and then and since they won’t ask, maybe a book to read would be the answer. 

Bergman doesn’t stop with just husbands and men, she even goes into the problems we women have when buying a bra.  You can only take 4 into the dressing room at one time so you undress, try them on, redress, go back out and get 4 more repeating the same procedure until you either find one that fits or you just give up.  And why do men have pockets in their pants but most women’s pants don’t?  That’s not all!  She will open your eyes to the actual cost of a gallon of makeup! 

As I read I could hear one voice in my head…Andy Rooney.  I have decided that Annette Bergman is the female version of Andy Rooney.  I’ve laughed as she voiced her feelings on topics that we all face but most of all, I understand and feel the same with EVERY ONE of her feelings.  This is a must read for women and a should read for men.  I know that some of you men can’t relate to a few of the topics but look at it like this.  Things That Make Me NUTS will give you a better insight to the true feelings of women.

 
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