Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Gold Medal Wine Club Voted Top 5 Best Wine Clubs

If you are a devoted wine enthusiast you probably wonder if joining a wine club is a good deal. That’s a great question. Joining some clubs, like Gold Medal Wine Club, voted Top 5 Best Wine Clubs, is absolutely a good deal. Read on to educate yourself about what to look for before you select a wine club. If you’re passionate about wine, you should definitely join a wine club. But it should be a good wine clubs

Not all Wine Clubs are Good Wine Clubs
Whether you are buying a car, an insurance policy, a diamond ring, or deliveries of wine, you need to know that there are bad apples in every industry. Some unscrupulous merchants prey upon unsuspecting consumers. Wine clubs are not exempt. There are a handful out there that strive to sign up as many customers as they can, get them to sign a contract, and lock them into a plan that drains them of their disposable income without delivering the goods in a value-added way. As you investigate your options for joining a wine club, look for these red flags that indicate that a wine club is trying to take advantage of you.
  1. Is the company that’s trying to sell you a wine-club membership not in the wine business? This is really a no-brainer. Why would you buy wine from a newspaper company like USA today or a kitchen-ware retailer like Williams-Sonoma? Sure, you can trust them for newspaper delivery and fine cookware, respectively. But wine? What’s happening in these cases and cases like them is that these merchants are using their name recognition to sign up club members, and then outsourcing the wine shipments to a third-party in return for a cut of the profits. 
Wine is big business, and many companies offer private-label wine clubs to boost their bottom lines. The truth is, these companies that you trust have zero to do with wine selection, customer service, or keeping your personal information secure. All they’re doing is selling your information to a company you’ve probably never heard of. When you see this type of set up, say, “Thanks, but no thanks.”
  1. What rating did the club in question get? Think of companies like Wine Club Reviews as wine-club watchdogs. They rate most wine clubs according to value (quality-to-price ration; shipping prices; and how customizable its offerings are. You should consider any wine club scoring less than four stars a “pass.”
Why Good Wine Clubs are Worth It
The best wine clubs are run by people motivated by their passion for fine wines and their desire to share their love of wine with others. Here are reasons why four-star-and-up wine clubs are worthwhile. 
  1. Wine clubs charge less than wine stores. Wine stores often mark up prices beyond the suggested retail price. Wine clubs sell for less.
  2. Many wine clubs offer a 100% satisfaction guarantee. If you buy wine you don’t like from a wine store, you’ll probably be out of luck. 
  3. Wine clubs are familiar with the wine. Few wine store clerks are familiar with all of the wines they sell, so they’re not qualified to recommend them.
  4. Wine clubs buy in bulk. Wine clubs order dozens of cases of particular wines, so they receive it at a lower cost than a wine store. Clubs pass savings on to their members.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Clean Eating with The Fruit Guys

For the past couple of years, I have been very focused on the 'Living-a-Healthier-Lifestyle' mantra. It took me a long time to not rush up with my weight loss and instead, be very patient. I have had my series of yoyo dieting, detox and diet fads, until I just learned to focus on changing my lifestyle instead of trying to lose weight and look good. Because of this new mindset, I have lost a huge amount of weight, 25lbs to be exact. Recently, I have been focusing on toning my body and I have been increasing my physical activities as well. Of course, I always make sure to eat clean, or what I call the 'mindful eating habit'. To date, I am happy with my current weight and size too. So yes, the looking good part just came as an added bonus to the healthier lifestyle. This is what I always tell my friends when they asked me for weight loss advice. I still have my cheat days but I do not go overboard. I take more protein now than carbs and lessen, if not zero out my junkfood craving. I was not a huge fan of fruits as snacks but I learn to curb this and made fruits as my staple go-to snack. But then again, there are a lot of fruits that we need to take moderately and this is where The Fruit Guys come. I always go to their site whenever I need to read about helpful articles on what fruit gives the most nutrients or just a random article on convenience singles out. It is very important that we become knowledgeable on what we take in our bodies and with the amount of information out there, we should know what to filter and where to get this vital information.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

Recipe of the Week: SHORTBREAD TEA COOKIES

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I.love.TEA.
 The best cookies to go with tea are Shortbread Tea cookies so I learned to bake them and bake them as often as I could. I added some Hershey's Kisses and Hershey's Chocolate bar on top so I can share them with mini-S.

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Ingredients:
  • 1/2 cup Powdered Sugar + 1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
  • 2 sticks/1 cupUnsalted Butter 
  • 2 cups flour (unsifted & packed)
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • pinch of salt
  • Hershey's Kisses or Bar
Mix all the ingredients and chill dough for 25 minutes. 
Bake for 25 minutes at 325F.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

How to Whiten Teeth in Photoshop

There are many people who will see a photo of themselves and be shocked at the lack of whiteness they see in their teeth. With the advances made available due to Photoshop, it is very easy to remove the appearance of stained or yellow teeth from the image and to replace it with bright pearly whites. The steps for this process are very simple to follow, and even individuals who have never used Photoshop will find that whitening their teeth in this manner is quite simple. 

Of course, if you are looking to whiten your teeth in Photoshop, you may want to consider whitening your teeth in reality as well. It is not necessary to visit a dentist over and over again nor is it necessary to spend a lot of money on whitening. There are many safe and affordable at-home whitening kits available that will be able to make your teeth just as white as they appear after they have been Photoshopped. 

Step-by-Step Guidelines

Obviously, there are a number of different versions of Photoshop, and while these steps were made using CS3, they will work with any version.

It is first necessary to open your photo in Adobe Photoshop. Take a moment to look at those stained and dull teeth and then say your final goodbyes.

You will first need to duplicate your layer, so begin by right-clicking on the layer and select the option titled “Duplicate Layer…” You can name your new layer anything you like, but since we are whitening your teeth, the title “teeth” seems very appropriate.

On your toolbar, you will notice an icon in the lower left corner that is known as the “Quick Mask” icon. Click it.

Once you have done that, you will then need to select the brush tool. You will paint over all of the teeth in black, and you should do so very carefully. Even though you have selected black as the color, the painted area will appear as a transparent red. This is OK.

You will then have to invert your mask, so go ahead and press CTRL+I or Command+I to do so. Now everything but the teeth should appear in the transparent red.

Then you will have to click the Quick Mask icon again, exiting the Quick Mask mode. There should be a selection around the teeth. 

You will now want to bring up the Hue/Saturation Palette, so press CTRL+U or Command+U. Select the yellows from this menu, as this will begin the process of removing the yellow from the teeth. Using the Saturation Slider, remove all traces of yellow by moving the slider far to the left. 

On the same menu, select “Master.” Go ahead and adjust the Lightness Slider to further brighten the teeth. 

To finish, press OK and then CTRL+D to deselect the image.  Smile, you have just finished!

Realize Virtual Changes in Reality

While the process for whitening your teeth in Photoshop may seem very easy, it is very realistic to whiten your teeth this easily in reality as well. There are many at-home whitening kits that can be very helpful in accomplishing this, and they are able to achieve relatively fast results. Not the kind of fast results you get through Photoshop, but certainly much more realistic and long-lasting. 

Monday, June 2, 2014

Homemade Overnight Refrigerated Oatmeals

I am not a huge fan of oatmeals for breakfast. Yes, I do love oatmeal cookies with my tea but I find it so hard to enjoy a nice warm cup of oatmeal to start my day.

Since I am on the road for a healthier lifestyle, including dear hubby who has been very good at shopping organic fruits and vegetables for the family, I needed to tweak our breakfast meals. We still indulge in some hearty breakfast from time to time, mostly during weekends. I will not deny that my boys and I are huge breakfast eaters and we do love our occasional fried Spam, baked bacon, sauteed corned beef hash and omelettes of any kind. However, if we can cut back on our processed breakfast meals from 5 times a week to say a day or two, that would be even better. Not to mention that we are so busy, we do not have enough time to prepare hearty breakfast on work/school days.

I have always known that oatmeal is one of the healthiest breakfast of choice. Maybe there would be some ways me and my boys could enjoy oatmeals, hence, the overnight refrigerated oatmeals which I have been seeing on so many healthy lifestyle advocates I have been following on Instagram. It is actually very easy to make one, I like mind liquid-y over creamy because overnight, it gets creamier.

Here is a simple infographic on how to assemble your refrigerated oatmeals.

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If you try and research, Google will give you so many creative ways and ideas on how to make your refrigerated oatmeals a whole lot more appetizing, but I like mine making with this two ingredients + assorted fruits/raisins/nuts and top with occasional cereals for that extra bite.
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...And here are just some of the Overnight Refrigerated Oatmeals me and my boys have been enjoying every morning. It's perfect as we enjoy the warmer seasons, feels like eating ice cream for breakfast.
Refrigerated Oatmeals
Have an Awesome June, off to check these mothers birthstone rings.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Encouraging Employee Health and Fitness

An employee's health and fitness level is not only important for their own sake, but for their employer's sake as well. An employee who is healthy is less likely to take sick days, has more physical energy to devote to work projects, and may even be a happier, more morale-boosting person. Employers can take a stand for healthy living in the workplace and give their employees incentive to stay fit.

Here are a few ideas for bosses who want to encourage health and fitness.

1. Promote Awareness 
Take advantage of opportunities like National Diabetes Month in November or Employee Health and Fitness Month in May to remind your employees of the importance of fitness. Partner with local health clinics around these months. You may be able to offer free or discounted screenings for your employees.

2. Encourage Walking/Biking
If you live in a large city where most people can walk to work, offer incentives for walking or biking instead of driving. Try organizing a once-a-month raffle where employees get one entry every time they walk or bike to work. Make it easier for regular bikers by providing them a place to safely store their bikes.

3. Pedometers
You can encourage walking in the workplace too, not just to and from it. Hand out pedometers to everyone and make it a contest to see who can get the most steps throughout the day -- while still accomplishing their workload, of course. You can even print your logo on a pedometer here.

4. Activity Breaks 
It may seem hard to encourage fitness for employees whose job is to work at a desk all day, but one thing you can do is implement a ten-minute activity break. Your employees get an extra break, but they have to use that time to do something physical -- a few yoga poses, a jog around the office, some jumping jacks in the break room. It lets them step away from their desk and come back revitalized.

5. Healthy 
Snacks At business meetings, offer healthy options like yogurt and granola instead of chips. Replace the soda in the break room fridge with bottled water and juice. Where you once used to bring in donuts for a morning treat, bring in a tray with fresh fruit and dip. It sends the message that your business cares enough about health and fitness to offer more nutritious food options.

Monday, May 19, 2014

The Power of Fresh, Organic Juice

Scientists have made many discoveries about the health benefits of organic juice in the past few years. Phytonutrients, antioxidants and other compounds found in organic juice have long-term health benefits that were previously unknown.

Creating fresh, organic juice is a painstaking process requiring expensive equipment, vigilant produce selection and knowledge of nutrition retention. Most commercial juices, even if organic, lose much of the nutrition of the original fruits and vegetables during the pressing and processing of the juice. As a result, many people are turning to Boca Raton organic juice delivery to meet their nutrition needs.

Home delivery services have made fresh, organic juice accessible to anyone. It's no longer a luxury afforded for only the most health-conscious who have the time to buy their own ingredients and process them at home, a time-consuming process. Instead, fresh organic juice from red cabbage, almonds, kale and other super-foods are more convenient than ever. Available in single-serve bottles and packing equivalent nutrition to several servings of vegetables, these juices are a convenient way to stay healthy and feel your best.

There are a few things to keep in mind when purchasing organic juice. The most important factor is the freshness. Ideally, juice should be consumed as soon as possible after it's made. Home delivered organic juicers often make batches daily, while juice at the grocery store or supermarket may sit for weeks before being purchased. To compensate, many manufacturers have started adding preservatives and other dubious ingredients to make them last longer.

The next most important piece is the juicing process used. A cold-pressed juice is created by gently extracting the juice and nutrients from fruits and vegetables without applying unnecessary heat. This preserves the flavor of the juice, but more importantly, ensures that all of the antioxidants and other good bits are available to your body.

Lastly, juices should contain only the freshest, organic ingredients. It's one thing to make juice fresh, and another entirely to have fresh ingredients behind the scenes. The best juice can only be made from the absolute best, organic ingredients. Higher quality juice is worth every penny when it comes to your health and the benefits they provide.

Drinking home delivered organic juice daily can improve your health, cut down on illnesses and give you a new energy. It really can't be compared to any other food, vitamin, or supplement available.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Fine Dining

Thought I'd share this before I check on this christopher radko at christmasplace.com.
Very handy especially when you plan to host a sit-down dinner at your home.



Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Finding Every Avenue Of Activity At The Gym

When people go to the gym, they want to have as many options for exercise as possible. There are so many outlets that a gym has a hard time hosting every needed option. Everything from an outdoor basketball court to an Olympic size swimming pool helps to make the gym the place where everyone can get a good workout.

The Court

Playing on basketball court is a good form of exercise. Basketball players work out regularly, but people who need to be active can play a few games on the court at the gym. Also, the court is a good place for large groups to convene before they participate in a circuit training routine.

The Pool

The pool at the gym is a great place for people with joint problems to exercise. Also, swimming classes are taught in these pools for people who want to get in shape. A water aerobics class is one of the best ways to burn calories and tone muscle.

The Classrooms

The classrooms in the gym can host everything from a Pilates class to a kickboxing class. People who visit the gym can take classes that come from a vast schedule. The person who is very committed to physical fitness can take many classes consecutively.

At the local gym, every person deserves to have choices for their own workout. A full-service gym is the best place for people to workout. They can go from the basketball court to the pool and off to the weight room to get a complete workout.

♥SomethingPurple♥

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