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CLOSED Clean floors are the best :-) My review of Bona PowerPlus cleaning products – and a giveaway!

*Disclaimer: Bona sent me a pack of Bona PowerPlus products free of charge for me to review. All opinions expressed here are my own.

Before our baby girl was born I used to follow a well-established “cleaning schedule:” Once a week, preferably on Fridays, I would get all my tools out and perform a thorough cleaning of the house, from top to bottom. Yes, it was time-consuming, but it also felt very rewarding. I’ll admit to being a bit of a “cleaning freak:” I just hate to see dust around me, and this is why I like to keep things clean and tidy as much as I can. Dirt and clutter? These are big no-nos to me! 🙂

My cleaning schedule has simply gone out of the window since the arrival of our daughter. Now, I clean the house whenever I can, and sadly this does not happen very often. Thankfully, my husband has come to the rescue, and lately he has been in charge of most of the cleaning. I still like to vacuum, however I no longer have the time and/or the dedication to follow up with the thorough cleaning I used to do back in the day. I am so thankful to hubby for taking over the cleaning responsibilities, and I like to keep the tools well-stocked and to invest in time-saving cleaning solutions to make his mission easier. For all of these reasons I was very excited when Bona contacted me and asked me to review their latest range of cleaning products. Keep Reading

CLOSED Cheers to smoothies! A review of the Hamilton Beach Wave-Action blender – and a giveaway!

I haven’t always been a “smoothie gal” – but now I am. Since having the baby I have become more aware of what I eat and drink, and more determined to give my body the nutrients it needs to function well. I’m happy to report I’m eating more fruits and veggies than I was before becoming a mom. Thankfully, a new grocery store has opened in our neighborhood, and it takes me very little time to walk there and to stock up on fresh quality produce. The abundance of seasonal fruits and veggies inspires me and keeps me motivated. I love summer – and I love smoothies 🙂

Being such a new and passionate smoothie supporter, I was excited when I was contacted by Hamilton Beach and asked to review the latest addition to their range of blenders, the Wave-Action blender. The blender I use regularly is one I bought a few years ago. It is a versatile workhorse, and besides drinks I have been using it to make soups, dips and even mashed potatoes. They all turn out creamy and velvety, just the way we like it. I was curious to see how the Wave-Action blender would fare compared with my old blender, so I happily took on the challenge. Keep Reading

CLOSED The goodness of tomatoes, the goodness of summer: a review of Red Gold Tomatoes grilling recipes – and a giveaway!

To write about food is to write about memories – and this is certainly true in my case, when it comes to writing about tomatoes. To me, they remind me of the many gorgeous summers I spent in the countryside while I was growing up. My aunt and uncle owned a small house about 20 miles away from the city, and they loved having me and my niece Anne Marie over when school was out for the summer.

Those were the days I never got tired because the world and its wonders kept me in awe, and my uncle’s garden was something to behold. We used to play hide-and-seek in that garden, tirelessly running around the cherry trees, digging deep and hoping to discover allegedly long-lost treasures at the root of the old fir tree, or happily hunting down Colorado beetles in the mild sunset light. We would always play and eat in that garden – who could have resisted freshly picked raspberries, apricots, apples and, of course, tomatoes? Indeed, no day would pass without me eating a tomato from my uncle’s garden. Firm, slightly sweet and deliciously thirst-quenching, my uncle’s heirloom tomatoes would give me that much-needed energy boost to go on with my playing.  Keep Reading

Raw Spice Bar giveaway: We have a winner!

Thank you all for taking part in the Raw Spice Bar giveaway. The winner is jberry, who wrote, “If I had to pick just one, Cumin. Having a comforting quality, tasting like home in a way. It represents so many ethnic palates as well.”

The winner has been notified. Stay tuned for more exciting giveaways! 🙂

CLOSED Spices for the heart and mind: a review of Raw Spice Bar – and a giveaway!

I have always wanted to know more about spices and the art of combining them to create the perfect flavors. When we lived in England I used to love the cooking shows which featured Chef Atul Kochhar. A twice Michelin starred chef renowned for his modern take on Indian cuisine, he is also what I would call “a spice genius.” Every time I watched Atul’s shows I was amazed with his artistry. To Atul, nothing was random: every ingredient had a reason to be there, and every added spice was discussed in a way which made perfect sense to the uninitiated, such as myself.
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