Ginger Pineapple Smoothie – Back to School (Secret Recipe Club)

#Secret Recipe Club

Every month, I’m assigned another blog to check out.  After checking out their blog, I’m to find a recipe to make, photograph, and then post the recipe with the photograph of the recipe.  August has five Mondays so we are posting a family friendly meal for the fifth Monday.

Continue reading “Ginger Pineapple Smoothie – Back to School (Secret Recipe Club)”

Books I Read This Summer – Part 2

Here are the remainder of the books that I read this summer.

Death by Tiara (A Jaine Austen Mystery #13)Death by Tiara by Laura Levine

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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Trouble at High Tide (Murder, She Wrote, #37)Trouble at High Tide by Jessica Fletcher

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this book. Jessica was invited down to Bermuda for a week of relaxation. On her first night there, her plans were derailed when there was a murder. Jessica investigated the murder while enjoying what suppose to be a relaxing vacation.

Even though there weren’t too many suspects, Jessica had to work through all of the tension within the victim’s family. It made for a good read.

This was the first Murder She Wrote book but it won’t be the last. I really enjoyed the pacing of the book. With Donald Bain’s description of the area of Bermuda, I was able to create a picture of the beach Jessica’s cabin was located on.

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Destination Murder (Murder, She Wrote, #20)Destination Murder by Jessica Fletcher

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I enjoyed reading this book.

Jessica was on a trip with her friend Reggie. They were traveling with his Train and Rail Club to Vancouver, British Columbia. Once in Vancouver, they were going to take a three day train ride through the countryside of British Columbia. However tragedy occurs while they are on the train. Jessica helps investigate the murder of one of the members of the Train and Rail Club.

After reading this book, I want to travel in British Columbia. The scenery sounds absolutely gorgeous.

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Lowcountry Boil (A Liz Talbot Mystery, #1)Lowcountry Boil by Susan M. Boyer

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I loved this book. Liz is a Private Investigator who has moved from her hometown years ago. When her grandma is murder, she moves back to Stella Maris, South Carolina to help solve her grandma’s murder.

She gets help from her friend Colleen, a guardian of the island. Colleen had died 14 years previously. I thought this was an interesting twist to the story.

I ended up listening to the story rather than reading the story. The narrator had a Southern accent which made it a pleasant listening experience.

The author takes the reader/ listener through so many twists and turns that makes the reader want to know more. I highly recommend this book.

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Vi Agra Falls (Bed-and-Breakfast Mysteries, #24)Vi Agra Falls by Mary Daheim

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Judith’s husband’s ex-wife is back in town. You never know what Vivian, aka Herself, is going to be up.

The reader is given some background information about Herself in the book. That background information can be confusing at times while reading. Renie, Judith’s cousin, at one point told Judith that a family tree was needed when discussing Herself’s marriages and children. That is so true for the reader.

I would suggest reading this book when you have time to actually concentrate on the book so you are not confused by all the characters introduced in the book.

Oh, Joe frustrated me at times because he seemed to be at Herself’s beck and call. She’s your ex wife. Judith is your current wife. I felt as though he needed to grow a backbone at times.

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Cloche and Dagger (Hat Shop Mystery, #1)Cloche and Dagger by Jenn McKinlay

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Scarlett is down on her luck in love. Her cousin asks her to come to England to help with their grandma’s hat shop, Mim’s Whims. When she gets to the shop, Viv is nowhere to be found. Then there was a murder of one of their customers. Scarlett needs to get acclimated to England while dealing with the murder, wondering where her cousin is, and staying out of harm’s way because someone is trying to harm her.

This was such a good book. I enjoyed the pacing of the story. I also enjoyed Scarlett and Harrison’s relationship. Harrison helps with the financial side of the shop. Is there going to be a relationship between Scarlett and Harrison or are Harrison and Viv a couple? I want to read more books in the series to find out.

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A Deadly Cliché (A Books by the Bay Mystery #2)A Deadly Cliché by Ellery Adams

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really enjoyed this book. Olivia lives in Oyster Bay, North Carolina with Captain Haivland, her standard poodle.

Oyster Bay has been plagued by murders and robbers by the Cliche’ Killers. Olivia and her friends are helping figure out who these killers are before more people are robbed or killed. There is a secondary mystery involving a mysterious letter.

The main character seems in control of her life. She thrives on being an independent lady.

I’m wondering if there is going to be a relationship with Olivia and the police chief.

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Hula Done It? (Passport to Peril, #4)Hula Done It? by Maddy Hunter

I am loving this series of books. For me, they are quick reads with just enough humor to keep me interested.

Emily Andrew is on a Halloween cruise around the Hawaiian islands. A professor who specializes in James Cook fell off the side of the cruise ship. Emily and her trusty tour group of senior citizens are up to the challenge of finding out what happened to Dorian Smoker, the professor.

Notable highlights of the story:
There is something to do with extra size condoms in the book. It’s hilarious.
Also the treasure hunting is very interesting.

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Books I’ve Read During the Summer – Part 1

I did a lot of reading this summer.  Since I have 17 books that I’m going to share with you, I’ve broken the list into 2 parts.  The first part is going to be 9 of the books and the second part is going to be the final 8 books.
Foreign Éclairs (A White House Chef Mystery #9)Foreign Éclairs by Julie Hyzy

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Julie Hyzy has declared this book as the last book in the series. The last few words of the book is like a fork in the road. She can either continue with the series or the series has ended. There is no clear answer.

Once again Oliva, aka Ollie, Paras is in trouble. At first, she thinks her mugging is just that a mugging but then discovers a previous enemy’s brother blames her for what happened to his brother. The brother will stop at nothing to eliminate what he believes to be a threat.

This book reminded me of CSI at points in the book. I’m a big fan of CSI so maybe that is why it appealed to me. Foreign Eclairs is a heavier read than what is considered to be a cozy read.

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Killer Cruise (A Jaine Austen Mystery, #8)Killer Cruise by Laura Levine

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

This book was hilarious. Jaine, with an i, gets into one mess after another while on the cruise. The emails from her parents and her gay friend, Lance were the best part of the book.

Killer Cruise is the first book I’ve read from this author. I really enjoyed her writing style.

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Here Comes the Bribe (Bed-and-Breakfast Mysteries, #30)Here Comes the Bribe by Mary Daheim

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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To Cache a Killer (The Frannie Shoemaker Campground Mysteries #5)To Cache a Killer by Karen Musser Nortman

My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Frannie and her friends are camping in Iowa. While they are camping, they are geocaching. There is a murder and a mystery involving travel bugs.

I gave it a 3 because there were parts I felt that dragged in the story. I’m not really into geocaching like my husband. If he read the book, he might have given it a higher rating. I know the basics of geocaching but don’t fully understand it.

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The Chocolate Frog Frame-Up (A Chocoholic Mystery, #3)The Chocolate Frog Frame-Up by JoAnna Carl

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Lee’s boyfriend has been accused of murder. It’s up to her and Joe to figure out who the real murderer is without getting hurt or killed themselves.

I really liked this book especially the chocolate tidbits the author provides.

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The Chocolate Clown Corpse (A Chocoholic Mystery, #14)The Chocolate Clown Corpse by JoAnna Carl

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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A Clue for the Puzzle Lady (Puzzle Lady, #1)A Clue for the Puzzle Lady by Parnell Hall

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

This book took me a long time to complete. Well with the way I read, it took a long time to read. It was broken down into 60 chapters which made it seem longer.

The premise is good but it took me a long time to really get into the book. Once I got into the book, I finished it within a day. So what was the premise of the book? Clues that looked like crossword puzzle clues were left at two murder scenes. Were the clues truly crossword puzzle clues or something else? You need to read to find out.

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Dutch Me Deadly (Passport to Peril, #7)Dutch Me Deadly by Maddy Hunter

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

I loved this book. It was entertaining and allowed me to travel without having to leave my living room.

I loved Maddy Hunter’s description of the Red Light District. If I ever get there, I need to remember not to go into a coffeehouse. You need to read the book to find out why.

I also learned that you need to be careful about bicyclists instead of cars when you are in Amsterdam.

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Alpine for You (Passport to Peril, #1)Alpine for You by Maddy Hunter

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

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Cheesy Orzo Pasta (Simple Side Dish)

The Imaginative One turned 13 last month.  A tradition in our house is for me to cook one of the birthday boy’s favorite meals for their birthday.  We had the Imaginative One’s dinner the day after his birthday because we had planned to be out on his birthday. Continue reading “Cheesy Orzo Pasta (Simple Side Dish)”

Lunch Time Ideas

I always have issues figuring out what to pack for lunch.  In order to make it easier for you, I’ve decided to create a list of ideas that you can mix and match during the week.  Pick one grain/ carb, protein, and one or two fruits and veggies.  Then you will have a complete lunch.

Continue reading “Lunch Time Ideas”

Asian Cole Slaw

I started back to work last Wednesday.  Since I know life can get crazy when I’m at work, I decided I needed to make some freezer meals.  I cooked up some hamburger in the slow cooker.  Some of the cooked up hamburger became taco meat for the freezer.  The Wee One loves tacos so he’s going to be super excited to have tacos in the freezer. Continue reading “Asian Cole Slaw”

Six More Easy Breakfast Ideas

Since it’s the beginning of the school year, I’ve decided to write a blog post of possible breakfast ideas.  It’s often hard for me to eat breakfast in the mornings because I am not like Hubby.  Hubby has to eat right when he gets up.  His one and only breakfast idea is cereal and then coffee.  If I make him breakfast, I have to make sure it is cooked and ready to go when he gets up. I on the other hand have to be up for a while before I have breakfast.  Continue reading “Six More Easy Breakfast Ideas”

Snickerdoodle Bars – Secret Recipe Club (August 2016)

#Secret Recipe Club

This month I was selected to peruse Julie’s blog – Little Bit of Everything.  Julie is from Nebraska.  She has an impressive collection of over 100 cookbooks!  She has also written a cooking bucket list of 50 recipes she would like to try to cook or bake.

Continue reading “Snickerdoodle Bars – Secret Recipe Club (August 2016)”

Chocolate Almond Overnight Oats and Sunday Prep Idea List

These delicious oats are creamy and delicious.  Sort of like a pudding in a jar but for breakfast.  Full of protein and whole grains that will keep you full until lunch time. Continue reading “Chocolate Almond Overnight Oats and Sunday Prep Idea List”

Peach Simple Syrup and Peach Iced Tea


When I was 20 years old, I participated in the Walt Disney World College Program.  I was a quick service hostess at the Disney-MGM Studios’ Sunset Ranch Market.  While I was there I met a lot of people.  Molly and I were co-workers who spent a lot of time together during the four months we were down there.

Continue reading “Peach Simple Syrup and Peach Iced Tea”

Mom, What’s for dinner? – August 2016

I can’t believe it is already August.  I go back to work on August 10 so the majority of our dinners are going to be quick and easy or cooked in the slow cooker.

I only plan for five meals during the week so that we can have a leftover night.  I don’t have a set day for the leftover night or a set day for any of the meals.  There are few meals that have to be eaten before the other meals.  The reason for that is because I’m going to repurpose the leftovers.  I also tried to incorporate one meal that I know one or both of the boys will enjoy during the week.

If I go off track of the meal plan, I will substitute meals from the 10 quick and easy meals blog post.  Any of those meals are liked by my family.  Plus I usually have those items in my pantry.

Meal prep is going to essential to making sure dinner gets on the table and that I have lunches and breakfasts ready to go for those busy mornings.  On Sunday, I will have a breakfast, lunch, and snack menu for the work week.  I’m planning to have a couple of those each month not only for the readers but for me so that I have ideas for what to pack for breakfast and lunch.

For other great menus, visit I’m an Organizing Junkie’s Menu Plan Monday.

Week 1 – Page 2

Week 2 – Page 3

Week 3- Page 4

Week 4 – Page 5

Week 5 – Page 6