> Bless Their Hearts Mom: January 2011
Monday, January 31, 2011

Navigating Food Allergies Internet Class!

Do your kids have dietary restrictions ? Their classmates or friends?

If so, you know you have to be very careful what they eat.  Kiddo has a classmate with SEVERE PB allergy- he can't even SMELL it. Consequently we have to be very careful what can be brought to class!

How about an internet mini class to learn new recipes and how to be safe with dietary restrictions?

When: Wednesday, Feb. 2, at 1 p.m. ET
Where: TheMotherhood – held: http://www.themotherhood.com/talk/show/id/62140

Registration page for all seven Cooking Connections classes: http://www.themotherhood.com/cookingconnections

  “Navigating Food Allergies Class” ,  hosted by Lori Sandler, founder of Divvies Bakery and author of The Divvies Bakery Cookbook, www.divvies.com.  During the class, she will share her experiences and expertise on cooking for kids, family members and friends with food allergies.  Lori will also lead us through the basics of clean preparation and understanding ingredients, and then present a food allergy-friendly recipe that looks good and tastes great – whether you have allergies or not!

The class is sponsored by ConAgra and hosted by TheMotherhood.
The other co-hosts are:Kelly Rudnicki, Food Allergy Mama, http://www.foodallergymama.com/
Emily Paster, West of the Loop, http://www.westoftheloop.com/
Caryn Bailey, Rockin’ Mama, http://rockinmama.net/
Christy Matte, Quirky Fusion, http://www.quirkyfusion.com/
Nirasha Jaganath, Mommy Niri, http://www.mommyniri.com/
Mary Jo Strobel, FoodAllergy.org, http://www.foodallergy.org/
Piera Jolly, Jolly Mom, http://www.jollymom.com/
Nicole Shields Smith, Allergic Child, http://allergicchild.com/
Stefany Thode, To Be Thode, http://www.tobethode.com/
Clarissa Nassar, The Posh Parent, http://www.theposhpreneur.com/
Christina McMenemy, Mommy’s Must Haves, http://amommystoryreviews.blogspot.com

Winners Blasting into February!

 valentine cherubs winners badge

1. Law of the Garbage Truck- #89 Auqakuh

2. Organized Simplicity - #2 jhitomi

3. Bryton Picks:
    1. #40 Katy
    2. #26- SamanthaD
    3. #64 Bettycd

4. Project Happily After -#60 Terra H

5. Perspectives on Social Media - #5 Judy H

6. The Magic of Jelly- #27 Nancy

Makin' Me Hungry ......

makin me hungry button

I subscribe to alot of blogs, and it never fails at least 3 of them weekly
REALLY get me wanting to cook,
or just REALLY hungry by looking at what they cooked!

So I came up with an award,
and EVERY week I am going to give it to another blog
that inspired me!

Then you can blog hop with me, and maybe find some new blogs to check out!
And get hungry over!

So, drumroll please..............

Our first winner is:

valentine cookie pie AWAAP

Doesn't her Valentine's Day Cookie Pie just look DIVINE???
(her photos are stunning too!)

So run over and check out her blog and superb recipes
and let her know I sent you on over!

Happy Baking!

Free Wednesdays at the New Orleans Museum of Art !

Free Wednesdays at the New Orleans Museum of Art

10:00 am to 5:00 pm
New Orleans Museum of Art
1 Collins Diboll Circle

For ALL Louisiana residents!
Sunday, January 30, 2011

Recipe Weekend: Shrimp au Gratin from The Louisiana Seafood Bible: Shrimp

louisiana seafood bible shrimp cover

Last year I told you about the Jerald and Glenda Horst's 
series of books “The Louisiana Seafood Bible", specifically 
their Crawfish book. Today's recipe is from their first book: Shrimp. It's super-yummy and  is a perfect side or main dish! 

PLUS, it's super easy to make! As always, you can substitute crawfish or crab for the shrimp!

Shrimp au Gratin

 Serves 4 to 6
  • 1 pound peeled shrimp tails
  • 3 tablespoons chopped onion
  • 3 tablespoons melted butter
  • ¼ cup flour
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon dry mustard
  • Dash of pepper
  • 1 ½ cups milk
  • 1 cup cubed Velveeta cheese
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • ¼ cup dry breadcrumbs

Shrimp au Gratin
Cut large shrimp in half. Boil the shrimp in water for no more than 10 minutes, until firm and pink. Set aside. Sauté the onion in butter until tender. Blend in flour, salt, mustard, and pepper. Gradually add milk and cook over medium heat until thick, stirring constantly. Add cheese and heat until melted. Stir in the shrimp and pour into a well-greased casserole. Combine the butter and breadcrumbs and sprinkle over the top of the casserole. Bake in 400ºF oven for 10 minutes or until brown.

Book Review: It's Not Your Fault: Weight Gain, Obesity and Food Addiction by Emmanuel Barling Jr and Ashley Brooks

its not your fault cover
Synopsis:  Two-thirds of adult Americans are overweight.In their newest guide to a sane approach for better health, Award Winning health authors Mannie Barling and Ashley Brooks answer the main question for those who have failed in dieting: "Are you addicted to chemical food ingredients.or is the addiction just in your mind?"

In this comprehensive work the authors describe the causes of food craving,overeating and food addiction and they reveal the dangerous addictive chemicals used by food manufacturers which cause the compulsive and obsessive eating that leads to today's obesity epidemic.

The leading addiction of the American public -- surpassing even cigarettes and alcohol -- is overeating to the point of obesity. American obesity rates, in fact, are the highest in the world. Nearly twenty percent of the adult population has been diagnosed as clinically obese and there are ten million overweight and obese children in the U.S. "Americans did not get fat overnight nor did some mosquito spread a deadly virus that causes obesity," write the authors.

Barling and Brooks convincingly show that weight gain and obesity are the result of an addiction to chemical food ingredients, the dangers of genetically modified fruits and vegetables and the damage caused by the synthetic growth hormones, carcinogens and antibiotics found in factory farmed meats and dairy.For any reader who has failed to lose or keep off weight despite conscientious juicing,eating salad diets, drinking healthy food shakes or changing diets like a yo-yo It's Not Your Faultoffers hope.

Review: This is NOT an easy book to get through, but it is one that EVERYONE, especially parents, MUST read! The authors have done an excellent job of compiling all the case studies and breaking them down into ways that are easy for anyone to understand the results. This book will cause you to question literally EVERYTHING you, and your family eat.

On one hand, this book is the best eye-opener about the stranglehold that a few companies have over most of America's food production from literally SEEDS to the products you buy in the store. On the other, it will scare you to death for the same reason, when you realize there is really not much that can be done about it. Especially when I read today that The Organic Organizations who had been battling Monsanto have now decided to let the battle go (http://www.organicconsumers.org/articles/article_22449.cfm). 

There IS SO much in this book that I really do not know how to review it!  I could do a long review of EACH chapter! I have SO many pages turned down! I felt like I was back in college and studying for an exam! So I am going to list a few things I learned :

  • MSG (leading cause of migraines) is hidden in Maltodextrin, Yeast Extract, Hydrogeneated Vegetable Oil, Autolyzed Yeast and Hydrogeneated Vegetable Protein. So even if you say no MSG at a restaurant, the odds are you are getting it due to the contents of the food or oil used! 
  • Did you know the transport of MSG is controlled by the Bioterrorist Act of 2002? Yup, it is listed as harmful to the public
  • MSG is an excitotoxin- it excites your brain cells. Which is why manufacturers put in in their products- to get us to want to eat more of the product. When they enter the blood-brain barrier, they affect the appetite control center, and kill brain cells, the same as alcohol! You basically will not be able to stop yourself from eating more (think potato chips and you have an idea).
  • Excitotoxins are in marijuana- they cause the 'munchies'. Legal excitotxins are in over 9,000 food products!  If you eat 3 meals a day that contain MSG or another excitotoxin (knowingly or unknowingly), you are consuming more than 1500 times the daily amount that your brain can process. The results could be seizures or abnormal neural development (in kids). Oh and the average fast food meal has between 50 and 75 excitotoxins in it! Puts the 'Happy" in the kids meal!
  • No matter what the food companies tell you High Fructose Corn Syrup can cause increased weight gain, damage to liver and pancreas, increase your cholestrol and change your metabolism. Maybe the reason the over 30 crowd has such a hard time loosing weight is nor for lack of trying, but because they consume an average of 63.6 POUNDS of high fructose corn syrup (in varying forms) in an YEAR. 
  • Your average soda contains 2 oz of table sugar and 2 oz of high fructose corn syrup or added sweetener. That means that ONE 12 oz can of soda has 1/3 it's volume in SUGAR. The rest? 1 oz synthetic flavorings and 7 oz filtered water= Liquid candy! 
  • Did you know that the Corn refiner's Assc petitioned the government ( and won in 2010) to change "high fructose corn syrup" to "corn sugar", after the public started cutting back on products with it in them? It may sound healthier but it's the same bad stuff!
  • The rise of childhood obesity can be traced to the use of MSG and excitotoxins in baby formula AND prepared baby food. Once a child gets used to having them in their system, they can suffer withdrawl, when switched to purely organic foods, the same as alcohol.
  • In the US, more than 99% of all crops grown are now genetically modified. Either by engineering the seeds so only one crop can be grown from them, to controlling their fertilizer and water and pesticides. When the cattle or pigs eat the engineered feed, everything that is bad in it goes into their systems, and eventually into the meat we eat, and the milk we drink.

As you can see, this is just the tip of the iceberg for what this book contains. I will admit I look at labels a WHOLE lot differently now and find myself ordering much differently at fast food places. The authors offer a 12 point diet tip scale at the end of the book. After reading this book you will be scared, but much better informed. It will also give you some insight as to why other countries have issues with food and seeds sent from the US for aid, or resale.  if you want to be an informed consumer, READ this book! then go read the FDA site thoroughly about these products, and you'll be shocked too! 

About the Authors:The authors joined together for 2 previous books: Arthritis, Inflammation, Gout, Crohn’s, IBD, and IBS , and Mannie’s Diet and Enzyme Formula.  They decided to write this book, after both battled life threatening health issues, which caused them to evaluate their lifestyles, and diets. Their research took them in different directions, but it all came back to food, as the possible cause of their problems. The more they researched, the more they realized a new book was needed. 

Disclosure / Disclaimer: I was sent this book, free of charge, for review purposes, by the author via Bostick Communications. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about the book either

Big Paws Designs Discount Code!

big paw designs logo

Back before Christmas I told you about the great designs for your feline and canine friends
(or even yourself) at Big Paw Designs, and how much we love them!

As a way to welcome in the new Year, they are having a SUPER discount sale!

40% off online. Yup you read that right- FORTY percent OFF!

So start things ahead for birthday and even Christmas presents!
Coupon Code: SUPERSALE40
Discount:  40% off anything!
Expires:  April 15th 2011
Online at http://www.bigpawdesigns.com

Cannot combine with other offers, cannot apply to past orders.

HomeAgain Hearts, Share Your Heart & Help Shelter Pets!

HomeAgain Pet Recovery Service is offering pet lovers a special way to celebrate Valentine’s Day: the “HomeAgain Hearts, Share Your Heart & Help Shelter Pets” campaign.

Description: C:\Users\amye\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\Temporary Internet Files\Content.Outlook\6JYO3YB0\HomeAgain_Hearts_Banner_v2 0 (2).jpg

Here’s how it works: 

(1) Visit the HomeAgain PetRescuers Facebook page (contest is live on February 1),http://www.facebook.com/HomeAgainPetRescuers?v=app_172865006090891
(2) Post a heart on your Facebook page (There are four options!) 
(3) $.25 will be donated to the PetFinder.com Foundation (up to $5,000) for each heart posted
(4) The campaign runs Feb. 1-14

This is a simple and fun way to share the love this Valentine’s Day season!
Saturday, January 29, 2011

I May Be a Tad Anal, But...........

I just can NOT go here with my bookshelves! 

While I admit going by rainbow hues is nice,
 it would drive me NUTS!

I have to have them sorted by topic- ie crafts, history, religion, 
so I can find them quickly.

But it does look pretty doesn't it?
WHAT do YOU think?

BoB is Expecting- Join them for a Great Giveaway!

BOB is Expecting!
bob logo

It’s true! BOB, one of America’s top jogging stroller companies is DUE to DELIVER an enhanced fleet of rugged, high-performance baby strollers for the active family boasting FRESH fabrics and colors, NEW easy-to-use FEATURES, and a contemporary LOOK and FEEL.

The due date is February 1, 2011, and BOB invites you to help them welcome the new line into the world—on Facebook!

See the details FIRST on Facebook, and while you’re at it, enter the BOB Facebook giveaway contest (open from February 1 – February 18, 2011) at http://www.facebook.com/pages/BOB/144768865540655.    

One Facebook fan will win a brand new 2011 BOB stroller of choice!

So it you want a chance to win a BOB, Like them today and follow their Facebook Page!

Disclosure: No compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post

Book Review and Giveaway: Frankenstein's Monster: A Novel by Susan Heyboer O'Keefe

** this giveaway is closed. **

frankenstein's monster cover
Synopsis: “Behind me, stiffened with frost, lie the remains of Victor Frankenstein.”
What becomes of a monster without its maker? At the end of Mary Shelley’s classic novel, the creator dies but his creation still lives, cursed to a life of isolation and hatred. 

Frankenstein’s Monster 
continues the creature’s story as he’s compelled to discover his humanity, to escape the ship captain Robert Walton who vowed to the dying Frankenstein to hunt him down. In retaliation, the monster treks to England to destroy Walton's family only to befriend and fall in love with Walton's capricious niece, Lily Winterbourne—the woman who would destroy them all.

This is a tale of passion, revenge, violence, and madness—and the desperate search for meaning in an often meaningless world.

About the Author: A lifelong resident of New Jersey, Susan grew up in a town so small that not even people in the next town over had heard of it. (Amazing but true.) She now lives in another small town, which a visitor from Manhattan once described as the "end of the world." Since you might be eaten by bears trying to find it, she recommends that you visit her at her bear-free website at www.susanheyboerokeefe.com.

Review: I was never a big fan of Mary Shelley's Frankenstein- it was ok, but I was more into the vampire books! But this book made me want to go back and re-read Shelley's book! I LOVED this book! From the first page O'Keefe grabs you and keeps you enthralled with her tale. I am very sure that Shelley would be MORE than pleased with her work!

This book takes you on a roller coaster ride across the continent (Europe) and a story with many twists and turns that keeps the reader, like the monster Frankenstein, guessing where the tale will end. O'Keefe makes the monster human and humans monsters in such a way that invites the reader into the story as both witness and judge. The book will stay with you for days, as the tale of what is humanity resounds in your memory! This is one of the books you MUST read this year!

One winner will win this review copy of Frankenstein's Monster

Make sure I have an email address, with your comment,
so I can contact you, if you win!   
If I don't have a way to contact you, you will forfeit your win!

USA / Canada

3 day winner's rule : Winner has days to acknowledge they won prize,
and confirm address, if no contact, then new winner will be picked in their place. 

  Please post each entry separately, i.e. 2 comments for Subscribing: 
  • Follow this blog on Blogger/Google Friend Connect (1 entry) 
  • Follow me on Twitter (1 entry)
  • Follow this Blog on Facebook (1 entry)
  • Follow this blog on Networked Blogs (1 entry)
  • Vote for us at Picket Fence Blogs -right sidebar. (1 entry)
  • Tweet about this contest (2 entries), please include @BTHM1 in your tweet!  (this can be done DAILY for 2 entries PER day)  (you can use the RETWEET button above)  
  • Subscribe to this blog (2 entries) 
  • Share/ Post about this giveaway on Facebook (2 entries) (use the new SHARE button below!)
  • Stumble this post/giveaway (2 entries)  (use the new SHARE button below!)
  • Have / Put the "Bless Their Hearts Mom Blog" Button on your blog or website (3 entries)
  • Enter this post link in a Giveaway Linky on another site (4 entries)** MUST provide link to the Giveaway Linky! 
  • Blog about this giveaway (5 entries)

Contest will end on February 12th, at midnight. Winner will be picked by Random Number (random.org) on February 13th, and emailed. As soon as winner's info is received, I will mail their book to them the following week!

Disclosure / Disclaimer: I was sent this book, free of charge, for review purposes, through the Read It Forward Program from Crown Publishing. No other compensation, monetary or in kind, has been received or implied for this post. Nor was I told how to post about the book either

  • ISBN-10: 0307717321
  • ISBN-13: 978-0307717320

Virtual Book Tour: Night of the Snake Witch by CJ Thomas

Welcome to a Virtual Book Tour! I am happy to help promote CJ's newest book, as part of it takes place in Louisiana, and deals with Voodoo! Read on and you'll be wanting to read the book too!

Q&A with CJ Thomas!

What is the title of your book? Night of the Snake Witch

What is your book about? Alexandra Kendall is an executive for a pipeline company. She is also in love with Joe Larkin, but can't commit to marriage. When Joe drives Alex to Louisiana to check on an old Contractor friend Lester Kierbo, they find treachery. His daughter Ateara has taken things into her own hands and disappeared into the Bayou. When Alex leaves for the Dakota's, Joe follows unaware that both of them will be caught up in Atear's Voodoo and the supernatural. They find out about the thief ring on the pipeline and close in on it's leader their lives will dangling by a thread.

Why did you decide to write it? I was sitting in my office looking out the window watching the heavy machinery unload the 42" pipe. The banding that held the pipe to the rail cars was picked up by the large machine and taken to the end of the yard and dumped on the growing pile. As I watched the banding settle, it began to slither. (in my mind of course) That was the birth of Night of the Snake Witch.

How did you get published" I contacted OutskirtsPress after looking them up on the internet. I knew nothing about writing or the writing business. OutskirtsPress made it easy.

What types of readers will be interested in your book? Anyone over 17 who likes paranormal suspense.

cj thomas author photo What is special about you book / What differentiates it from other books in the same category? My experience on the Northern Border Pipeline. Most places in the book are real. People are from my imagination.

Have you published other books? Do you plan to publish more? Yes. I have two other books out under another name. I just finished an adult paranormal suspense and working on the sequel about the sex slave trade.

For more info and to purchase the book, check out the website: http://www.outskirtspress.com/CJThomas/

About C.J. ThomasCJ Thomas was the manager on a pipeline in the nineteen eighties for two years. Working with people from coast to coast with different cultures, beliefs and ideas she survived the experience. CJ lives in northern Utah with Patterson, a Scottish Terrier while working on her next novel.



Tired of getting the same old results when searching for a recipe? Foodily surfaces the very best content that is relevant to you, whether from Martha Stewart or your favorite food blog. Foodily is an amazing new recipe network which, for the first time, lets you compare recipes from across the web
, side-by-side, based on your preferences. And not only that, it's visually stunning and user-friendly as well. Check the Foodily site throughout the upcoming week to see more cool features in action!


Wednesday, February 2 

12:00-1:00PM PST / 3:00-4:00PM EST

Please RSVP to the Superbowl Tips, Tricks & Recipes Twitter party.  We want you to have the best Superbowl party around!



For our Twitter party we're delighted to be joined by a varied panel of food bloggers, C1kers, and party-planning experts who are also Foodily Brand Ambassadors!

Vanessa Druckman of Chef Druck Musings@frenchfoodiemom

Anne Marie Nichols of This Mama Cooks@amnichols

Paige Bayer from Canning with Kids@paigebayer

Heather Sokol from Inexpensively@inexpensively

Sarah Caron from Sarah's Cucina Bella: @sarahwcaron

Maris Callahan from In Good Taste@mariscallahan

Christina Mack of The Cupcake Bandits@mommacupcake

Sean Timberlake from Punk Domestics@hedonia


6 Whole Foods Gift Cards!

  • 2 - $25 Whole Foods Gift Cards
  • 2 - $50 Whole Foods Gift Cards
  • 2 - $100 Whole Foods Gift Cards

And a snazzy new Crock-Pot for your Superbowl treats!

Crock-Pot® Cook AND Carry Slow Cooker (MSRP: $39.99) Taking home-cooked meals on-the-go is safe and simple!  Portable slow cooker features chrome locking clamps with silicone gasket to securely seal in the feast so there’s no need to repack food in other containers.  Soft grip handles make carrying comfortable and the removable 6-quart stoneware doubles as a serving dish. When the party is over, clean up is a snap thanks to the dishwasher safe stoneware and glass lid unit. Visit www.crock-pot.com.

And there may be other surprise gifts throughout the party!

Follow Bless Their Hearts Mom

BTHM Bloglovin button BTHM Facebook button BTHM instagram button BTHM Pinterest button BTHM Twitter button Newsletter:  bthm heart email.jpg bthm kindle logo