Monday, October 28, 2013

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IMMINENT! “The Best Book I Ever Read” Highlight Reel

Posted: 28 Oct 2013 07:12 AM PDT

Are you in the mood for a good book? Our Giant Squids shared one of the best books they ever read this week.

Each lensmaster featured here also got an IMMINENT! raffle ticket.

Only Giant Squids get to participate in the IMMINENT! challenges. Not a Giant Squid yet? Don't miss out on the fun…check out the Giant Squid program right here.

You Can Heal Your Life by Louise L. Hay

1. You Can Heal Your Life by Louise L. Hay

This is not the first time I wrote reviews about the book ‘You Can Heal Your Life’. It is my favorite self- help book and really helps me overcome my health issue. When I recovered, I did promise myself to promote this wonderful book to as much p…

Building Life's Most Essential Relationship

2. Building Life’s Most Essential Relationship

For me individually, a quest requiring the best book I ever read was easily answered. Only one book I have read could fit that description and it would be the Bible, God’s Holy Word. Charles F. Stanley’s Life Principles Bible is a favorite editio…

Marge Tindal's Native American Poetry

3. Marge Tindal’s Native American Poetry

Out of the Whispering Winds Marge Tindal was a great Poet and though we lived ocean wide apart, she was my best friend. Sadly I have to write ‘was’ because she’s no longer with us. Marge passed away rather unexpectedly on January 26, 2009. I…

My favorite Banned Book: The Giver by Lois Lowry

4. My favorite Banned Book: The Giver by Lois Lowry

I remember reading The Giver as a young adult in middle school. It was pretty mature reading for someone that age, but I really enjoyed it. The Giver was one of the few books that I felt didn’t treat you like a child, but instead was right on the leve…

The Best Business Book I've Ever Read About Storytelling

5. The Best Business Book I’ve Ever Read About Storytelling

If you have a business you are telling stories about it. Maybe you have a business that extols the virtues of a product that a lot of other businesses sell as well, like dog treats. If you have a business selling dog treats and your strategy is ‘I…

Books For Cat Lovers

6. Books For Cat Lovers

I have always loved cats as far back as I can remember, so when I saw this book at a local used book store about 5 years ago, I immediately purchased it. I did not know what to expect, but I knew that it was the Chicken Soup Series of books, so I knew I ha…

The Little Prince - Throughout My Life

7. The Little Prince – Throughout My Life

The Little Prince Throughout My Life The Little Prince throughout my life. Growing up there were two encounters with this book that I shall tell you about. The third was after I had grown up. At least physically that is. The first story is when I was at ca…

Red As Blood By Tanith Lee - My Favorite Book Ever

8. Red As Blood By Tanith Lee – My Favorite Book Ever

Tanith Lee specializes in writing fantasy and science fiction and she is my favorite author of all time. Her style is positively captivating and her imagination is boundless, creating elaborate worlds of impossible reality with seemingly effortless eloquen…

Behind the Scenes at the Museum: A real review

9. Behind the Scenes at the Museum: A real review

Behind the Scenes at the Museum. A favorite novel Before this book was available in America, my sister sent it to me from the UK. ‘Jackie’ she said (my name isn’t really BritFlorida! ) ‘ this book is about us’. It isn’t really…

Making Miracles in 40 Days

10. Making Miracles in 40 Days

I can’t remember exactly when it all happened but somehow along the way, I realized that I wasn’t exactly happy. Sure there were days that I felt I couldn’t be happier while other days, I just wanted to crawl under my bed sheets and stay the…

The House of Mondavi: The Rise and Fall of an American Wine Dynasty

11. The House of Mondavi: The Rise and Fall of an American Wine Dynasty

It is such a rarity to find a nonfiction book that has the page- turning characteristics of a fictional suspense- thriller or juicy romance novel that when you do, you never forget it. That is what The House of Mondavi: The Rise and Fall of an American Win…

Time for Tea by Helen Exley

12. Time for Tea by Helen Exley

As soon as I saw this little book ‘Time for Tea’ I knew it was for me. Yes, I’m a tea drinker, an avid one. I believe that tea makes the world a better place; it certainly does for me. As the quote from George Orwell says, tea makes you…

The Maze Runner is a Thought Provoking Series for Teens (and Adults)

13. The Maze Runner is a Thought Provoking Series for Teens (and Adults)

Despite the fact that I’m well past my teen years, I find myself drawn to young adult literature. The stories being written for this age group are phenomenal and often seem to be more exciting than adult literature. Not only are they addicting, many o…

Kristin Cashore's "Graceling" on Audio Book is a MUST Listen!

14. Kristin Cashore’s “Graceling” on Audio Book is a MUST Listen!

I REALLY enjoyed listening to Kristin Cashore’s Graceling. It’s safe to say that this audio book was the BEST I’ve ever listened to. I listen to a lot of audio books because I am in my car for long amounts of time and I tend to get sleepy wh…

"How Full is Your Bucket? For Kids" -Mom's Book Review

15. “How Full is Your Bucket? For Kids” -Mom’s Book Review

After the first day of school, my girls came home talking about buckets. They enthusiastically explained about fillers and dippers and how their buckets were ‘overflowing’. One paused, looked at me and said ‘I love you Mommy. is your bucket…

Very British Problems - Making Life Awkward for Ourselves, One Rainy Day at a Time

16. Very British Problems – Making Life Awkward for Ourselves, One Rainy Day at a Time

I love this book! I cannot believe that I only discovered it a short while ago because it has had me in laughing and chuckling along for a good hour this morning. There is something very special about being British! Let me apologise in advance to my Americ…

Dune and the Dune Chronicles: Why You Should Read Them

17. Dune and the Dune Chronicles: Why You Should Read Them

Don’t think of the movie just now. Think of the book Dune and how it helped shape an era (the sixties) and how Frank Herbert’s craft in writing this science fiction series carries you through the ups and downs of vast empires and civilizations. I…

Go for it! - Giftbooks by Helen Exley

18. Go for it! – Giftbooks by Helen Exley

Go for it! by Helen Exley is one of my favorite books ever. Go for it! is a miniature book, full of empowering quotes from famous people like Michelangelo, Eleanor Roosevelt, Walt Disney and so on. The small size of Go for it! does not make it any less pow…

Angelfall: A Whole New Type of Post Apocalyptic Book

19. Angelfall: A Whole New Type of Post Apocalyptic Book

Susan Ee burst onto the indie market with Angelfall, a book that captured my imagination and made me hungry for more. In fact, the first time I read her book, I thought I’d heard wrong about it being an indie book. It was exquisitely edited and so pol…

Veronika Decides To Die, by Paulo Coelho: A Book Review

20. Veronika Decides To Die, by Paulo Coelho: A Book Review

‘Veronika Decides To Die’, is a highly original, moving story that takes each readers on a quest to find meaning in a culture overshadowed by angst, soulless routine and perverse conformity. It tells the story of a girl named Veronika who seems t…

Strunk and White's Elements of Style, best writer's guide

21. Strunk and White’s Elements of Style, best writer’s guide

The single most important writing guide I own Lie or lay? Farther or further? Which or that? Affect or effect? Did I use the word correctly? A quick thumb through Strunk and White, and I’m back on track. Of all the reference books on my shelf, Strunk…

Survive and Thrive in Japan with Point-and-Speak

22. Survive and Thrive in Japan with Point-and-Speak

‘The Original POINT- AND- SPEAK Phrasebook JAPAN’ by Toshiya Enomoto stands out as my favorite and most essential book when braving everyday life in Japan. It’s easy to use and covers every situation you can think of. One day, I made the fir…

Will they be home for "Christmas at the Homeplace?"

23. Will they be home for “Christmas at the Homeplace?”

In this latest novel in ‘The Homeplace Saga’ of historical fiction family saga stories, author Smith has continued the feel- good to story- telling at a singular fictional location in the southern Missouri Ozarks. This, the fourth novel in the se…

Healing Spirit Stories of Women Who Run With the Wolves as Told by Clarissa Pinkola Estes

24. Healing Spirit Stories of Women Who Run With the Wolves as Told by Clarissa Pinkola Estes

Voices of the Spirits of the Women Who Run With the Wolves Back in 2003 the voices of the spirits of the Women Who Run With the Wolves called out to me from a book shelf in a quiet corner of the local used bookstore where I worked part time. I heard the ho…

Love, Loss, Injustice, and Misery

25. Love, Loss, Injustice, and Misery

There is a reason this book has been made into several movies and an epic musical, not to mention the theme being stolen for such TV series and The Fugitive and others. It is because it is a story with everything. There is mystery, heartbreak, romance, dis…

The Noticer by Andy Andrews

26. The Noticer by Andy Andrews

Change Your Life by Changing Your Perspective Sometimes, all we really need in life is a little perspective. When Andy Andrews found himself lost and homeless at the age of 19, it took a man named Jones, The Noticer, to help him find the perspective to get…

Abraham Lincoln Biography for Kids (and adults)

27. Abraham Lincoln Biography for Kids (and adults)

During our study time, I read along with the kids from the Heroes of History series, enjoying the glimpses into lives of well- known public figures on a level that kids can really enjoy. We just finished with the Abraham Lincoln: A New Birth of Freedom sel…

London Recruits: The Secret War Against Apartheid

28. London Recruits: The Secret War Against Apartheid

BOOK REVIEW London Recruits: The Secret War Against Apartheid went on general release in 2012. It is a collection of short accounts by heroic people who played a vital role in the South African liberation movement. It is an amazing story of young men and w…

Clark Gable in Pictures

29. Clark Gable in Pictures

A Lifelong Crush Discovered in ‘Strange Cargo’ I have had a lifelong infatuation with the King of Hollywood despite the fact he wasn’t even alive the first time I watched one of his movies. I was a teenager, around 15, when I came across Cla…

Zen Driving: How to Relax Behind the Wheel

30. Zen Driving: How to Relax Behind the Wheel

Zen Driving by K. T. Berger is a remarkable book that can change your driving habits, your attitude toward other drivers on the road and, maybe even, your life. The authors are two brothers Kevin, a freelance journalist and Todd, a California psychotherapi…

Stay Healthy With Juice Therapy

31. Stay Healthy With Juice Therapy

On Valentine’s Day I got the best gift ever from my husband. Do you know what it was? Well, it was a Professional Juicer. In fact, I’m interested in receiving gifts which are beneficial for the whole family. Now this Juicer was in my kitchen but…

The Littlest Angel - A Christmas Book for Everyone

32. The Littlest Angel – A Christmas Book for Everyone

This is the story of how the littlest of things can be the greatest of gifts to Heaven – the little and mostly charming tale of the Littlest Angel. Written by Charles Tazewell and illustrated by Paul Michich, the Littlest Angel book comes down from the hea…

How to Be Alone (but never lonely!)

33. How to Be Alone (but never lonely!)

If you are like me and roughly 6 million other people around the world, you watched in awe as Tanya Davis read her poem: ‘How To Be Alone’ on her viral youtube video (see below). Tanya Davis, Canadian poet, singer/songwriter and musician put hers…

Stephen King's The Stand, the best book I ever read

34. Stephen King’s The Stand, the best book I ever read

The Stand is a post- apocalyptic horror/fantasy novel by American author Stephen King. This is actually the first large hard covered book I read. You see, I really wasn’t much of a reader when I was younger and in fact, I rarely even read a newspaper….

No Need to Wait Till You Have Relationship Problems Before Reading the Seven Principles

35. No Need to Wait Till You Have Relationship Problems Before Reading the Seven Principles

A Fun, Helpful, and Eye- Opening Book for All Couples, Married or Not My fiancee came home one day and said he’d downloaded a copy of a book on marital ‘issues’ someone had recommended to him. That caught me off guard, especially because I t…

All My Friends Are Going To Be Strangers

36. All My Friends Are Going To Be Strangers

Fiction writers and poets will understand what this title means, of if not instantly, soon after reading the remarkable story of Danny Deck as he comes to terms with his gift and its not always welcome side effects. When I was more or less lost in San Fran…

Day 13: $100 Challenge Winners

Posted: 28 Oct 2013 05:28 AM PDT

Lucky Day 13! We’ve got 5 more $100 winners. Go Squids!

Pumpkin Carving Alternatives

1. Pumpkin Carving Alternatives

Fun for the Entire Family! Halloween is one of my favorite times of the year! The air grows a little cooler (for most of us in the northern hemisphere anyway), it’s the start of the crazy rush of holidays and the push towards the end of the year. It m…

Dispenser Serves a Zippy Vegetarian Jewel of a Drink for Your Festive Affairs

2. Dispenser Serves a Zippy Vegetarian Jewel of a Drink for Your Festive Affairs

Come on over for a glass of my ruby red fizzy nonalcoholic cocktail while I show you this marvelous beverage server. I love the sparkle of cocktails served in brilliant glass dispensers like this classic one by Stylesetter. For a cool $24. 00 it costs no m…

Bring Me A Sturdy Zester

3. Bring Me A Sturdy Zester

I bought myself a sturdy lemon zester for my birthday. I’m very grateful to myself for making such a good choice. That birthday was over a year ago, but the zester is still sturdy and has seen duty not only on lemons, but on limes and oranges too. Pre…

Lou Reed - A true transformer

4. Lou Reed – A true transformer

I learned, just now, that Lou died today. I never met him or even saw him perform. But in so many small ways he made my life bigger and brighter and sharper and more inspirational. An eleven- year- old me, in a small Yorkshire village miles from Lou’s…

Growing Up with the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book

5. Growing Up with the Better Homes and Gardens New Cook Book

In one corner of my kitchen, there’s a stack of cookbooks and recipe books that take up space and collect dust. Some have never been opened and others receive a quick glace once in a blue moon. I love to cook. I’m just not fond of cookbooks. Well…

Lens of the Day: Jumbo Pumpkin Carving Kit

Posted: 28 Oct 2013 05:25 AM PDT

Halloween Fun and Games

Posted: 27 Oct 2013 12:49 PM PDT

If you’re looking for something fun to do on Halloween, take a look at these 3 lenses.

You've Been "BOOed" - The Neighborhood Halloween Game

1. You’ve Been “BOOed” – The Neighborhood Halloween Game

An interesting phenomenon takes place every October, and I’m not talking about Halloween. No, the unusual and ‘ghostly’ activity I’m referring to begins much earlier. It’s like a ghoulishly sweet prelude to All Hollow’s Eve. T…

5 Great Halloween Party Games for Older Kids

2. 5 Great Halloween Party Games for Older Kids

Every year I throw a huge Halloween Party for our two children and their friends. However, I find myself struggling as they approach their tween years to find age appropriate activities and games to keep them entertained. They have outgrown the pumpkin bea…

Boo-opoly Board Game

3. Boo-opoly Board Game

Monopoly Meets Halloween What happens when Halloween and Monopoly merge together? You get ‘Boo- opoly’ (or ‘Boooo- opoly’), the Halloween themed Monopoly game. This ghostly game is a fun and freaky way to play the classic family game ab…

Day 12: $100 Challenge Winners

Posted: 27 Oct 2013 07:41 AM PDT

Good Morning! Here are the Day 12 $100 winners!

Walking San Francisco's 49-mile drive

1. Walking San Francisco’s 49-mile drive

My sweetheart and I are perpetual tourists in our city. We figure if we live here the rest of our lives, we will never discover all the secrets the city holds. That doesn’t stop us from trying. One of our favorite past- times, and one of our favorite…

Wake Up and Smell the Coffee!

2. Wake Up and Smell the Coffee!

The cheering, comfortable aroma of brewing coffee fills the house right before the first of the family gets up. A little warmer under the carafe keeps this batch piping hot for two hours, long enough for everyone to have their morning pick- me- up. We had…

Solutions For Cooking One-Handed: The Kitchen Workstation

3. Solutions For Cooking One-Handed: The Kitchen Workstation

Have you ever tried cooking one- handed? If so you already know that it is pretty difficult preventing things from sliding around on the counters, and often times even downright dangerous, especially if you are trying to cut anything with a knife! Several…

Vapur Element is a Multi-Sport Reusable Water Bottle

4. Vapur Element is a Multi-Sport Reusable Water Bottle

My Favorite Collapsible Water Bottle for Walking, Hiking and Running When I first purchased a Vapur bottle in 2011 I had hoped that the compact folding design would solve the argument between my daughters over who ‘had to’ carry the water bottle…

A Tribute to Mr. Coffee a Star Among Coffeepots

5. A Tribute to Mr. Coffee a Star Among Coffeepots

My Coffee Pot love This isn’t a coffeepot review as much as it is a tribute to the best appliance in the world. I know, it isn’t wise to play favorites with the appliances as a slighted machine will quit running, but I can’t help feel a bit…

Lens of the Day: Best Soft Caramel Corn Recipe

Posted: 27 Oct 2013 04:29 AM PDT

Set The Mood For Halloween With Candles: 6 Lenses You’ll Love

Posted: 26 Oct 2013 08:03 AM PDT

I can’t think of a better Halloween atmosphere builder than candles, can you?
Whether you’re looking to buy them, make them or gift them, here’s 6 candles lenses to help you light the way on All Hallows Eve.

Candles Make the Perfect Halloween Gift

1. Candles Make the Perfect Halloween Gift

Halloween is a time of celebration and fun with trick- or- treating to enjoy and parties to attend. Every year there is always someone I know that’s having a Halloween party and if I have the energy and time, I like to throw a party myself. I love ent…

How to Make Candles on a Budget

2. How to Make Candles on a Budget

Candle making has been on my crafty to- do list for a long, long time. I kept putting it off though, because when I started to do the math, gathering all the supplies needed got to be rather costly. Unlike many other crafts I didn’t have any of the ma…

How To Make Natural Citrus Fruit Candles

3. How To Make Natural Citrus Fruit Candles

I was so delighted when a friend showed me how to make an all natural citrus fruit candle using only a fresh piece of fruit and a little olive oil. They are so simple to make, cost very little, only use natural organic ingredients found in your kitchen and…

How to Decoupage Flameless Candles

4. How to Decoupage Flameless Candles

Instead of using flameless candles plain as they come when you buy them, learn how to decoupage flameless candles to dress them up. These candles make great hostess or teacher gifts or use them in your home to decorate your space. Flameless candles are a g…

Top 10 Scented Candle Brands

5. Top 10 Scented Candle Brands

I am a huge fan of scented candles. In fact I’m a little bit over the top. My family is always finding new candles scattered around the house and my husband knows not to mess with the new Yankee Candle flyer when it comes in the mail. I’m not sur…

Halloween Candles: buy them or make them!

6. Halloween Candles: buy them or make them!

Set the mood for Halloween or Autumn with beautiful candles. You can buy them or you can be creative and make some creepy candles yourself! There is plenty for you to read here. A fun and easy recycled coffee can craft for kids to make is a candle- lit lan…

Meet AlleyCatLane, she’s a Giant Squid!

Posted: 26 Oct 2013 06:32 AM PDT

Screen Shot 2013-10-26 at 9.26.25 AM

What is the single best piece of advice you’d give to everyone?

Be kind to everyone you meet.

What did you admire most about your mother/father/parents?

My mother was a feisty little lady who was fiercely protective of her family. Sometimes I was embarrassed when I was a child and she was giving someone a piece of her mind, but in later years I learned to appreciate how she stood up for herself and her children.

What advice would you give to your teenage self?

Believe in your self-worth. Teenagers as well as younger kids can be so cruel. Just remember this time in your life will pass, and you have your whole future ahead of you.

What is the one thing you'd most like to change about the world?

Despite sounding like a Miss America contestant, it would be for everyone to “live and let live,” i think the world would be a much better place if everyone could accept and celebrate the differences in others.

Favorite Lens

Memories of a Key West Childhood

-AlleyCatLaneGiant Squid on Squidoo

Day 11: $100 Challenge Winners

Posted: 26 Oct 2013 06:17 AM PDT

Happy Saturday! We’ve got 5 fabulous product review lenses for you to enjoy today and they each won $100. Congratulations!

Humans of New York: Relatable Reading for Everyone

1. Humans of New York: Relatable Reading for Everyone

It doesn’t seem like that long ago, (and in fact it wasn’t! ), that I was writing to Brandon to thank him and tell him what an amazing thing he was doing. I had been seeing his photos pop up in my Facebook feed daily for months. Then there was on…

My Nuwave Made it Happen

2. My Nuwave Made it Happen

Not being one to jump on the wagon for the newest kitchen gadget put on the market, I am the first one to be surprised that I own a Nuwave Induction Cooktop. I don’t enjoy the info- commercials or the endless reviews one comes across for the newest, m…

Stylus, not Just for Writing

3. Stylus, not Just for Writing

Having a good quality responsive stylus is a must with a drawing app. I’ve had Blackberry phones and PDA’s in the past, and now own an iPad and an iPhone. I’ve never been one to use a stylus that much. I appreciate a good responsive touch sc…

Nirvana-The Rock Icon of the Nineties

4. Nirvana-The Rock Icon of the Nineties

It all started in 1991 with the death of ‘hair metal. ‘ It was a death many were happy to see. I was a small child then but even I remember watching the video for ‘Smells Like Teen Spirit’ on MTV. That’s how pivotal Nirvana was to…

My New Kitchen Kettle is Electric!

5. My New Kitchen Kettle is Electric!

I was visiting my daughter in the mainland this past Spring and wanted to make myself some hot chocolate. It was a chilly day in Oregon and cocoa sounded lovely. Her tea kettle wasn’t sitting on or near her stove in the kitchen, so I asked her where t…

Lens of the Day: A Night of Horror with Alfred Hitchcock

Posted: 26 Oct 2013 05:01 AM PDT

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