Thursday, October 24, 2013

My Way - Andre Rieu on his violin in New York

This video was forwarded to me by a fantastic reader.  I really love it when you guys find things and forward them to me.

There are some things that are so beautiful that they bring a tear to my eye, a lump in my throat or give me goose bumps.  That is exactly what this video did.

 

What did you think?






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Thursday, October 17, 2013

7 Easy DIY Halloween Candles

There is something about Halloween that brings out the ghoulishness in all of us.  Can you imagine these candles around the room and your guests enjoying these appetizers, and drinks specially designed for adults (alcoholic) and children (non-alcoholic)?


Halloween Cosumes by Voglue
Bloody Candles

Items needed to make Bloody Candles:

  • White Candles
  • Red Candles
  • Candle Holders
  • Matches or Lighter
Light the red candle and hold it over the white candle.  Allow the red wax to drip down the white candles.



Spooky Dollar Store Candles by Cathie and Steve
Spooky Candles

Items needed to make Spooky Candles:

  • Candles
  • Letters - wood, foam, felt, paper
  • If you're using wood letters you'll need some jewelry making items to dangle the letters
  • If you're using foam, felt, or paper then you'll need some glue
  • Paint
  • Glue
  • Scissors
  • For the witch, you'll need to print out a witch and glue it onto the candle


Victorian Mourning Candles by Make, Grow, Gather
Victorian Mourning Candles

Items needed to make Victorian Mourning Candles:

  • Glass Candle Holders
  • Candles
  • Red Candle
  • Black Lace
  • Glue
  • Scissors
These give such an air of elegance.

I think there is some black lace lying around my craft room - somewhere.  If not, there is always dye!  These are romantically eery.  Not sure how those two words can actually go together but somehow it seems to work.  Romantic + Eery = these Romantically Eery candles.


Spooktacular Candles by A Little Bit Wonderful
Spooktacular Candles

Items needed to make Spooktacular Candles:

  • White Pillar Candles
  • Black Candle
  • Matches, Lighter
  • Lace
  • Funfetti Bats
  • Glitter
  • Glue
Somehow these two completely different candles seem to go together.  Maybe it's the black that unifies.

Can you see using these candles at your book club meeting?  Oh, what fun!
 

Pumpkin Spider Candles by Good Housekeeping
Pumpkin Spider Candles

Items needed to make Pumpkin Spider Candles:

  • Mini Pumpkins
  • Black Pipecleaners
  • Knife and Spoon
  • Candle or Tealight
Cut a circle in the top of the pumpkin and dig out an area deep and wide enough for a candle.  Poke eight holes for the "legs".

If the pumpkins are kept natural, a small tea light would be cute so that the wax doesn't ruin the pumpkins.  Another cute way to use these pumpkin/spider candles would be with the flame-less candles so they would be safe to use around children.



Ghost Candle Shades by Interior Fans
Ghost Candle Shades

Items needed to make Ghost Candle Shades:

  • Glass Lamp or Light Shades
  • Mod Podge Glue
  • Sponge Paint Brush
  • Glitter
  • Black Paint or Black Vinyl
  • Tealight
Paint the inside of the globe or shade with glue and sprinkle glitter all around.  On the outside, paint the ghost face or use vinyl clings to make the face.

* As a precaution, I'd recommend using the flame-less candles with these since some of the decorations are on the inside.


Here's another project that specifically shows the use of flame-less candles.
DIY Black Candles by House of Dewberry
Graveyard Candles

Items needed to make Graveyard Candles:

  • Toilet Paper or Paper Towel Tubes
  • Masking Tape
  • Scissors
  • Glass Pebbles or Rocks that will fit inside the tube
  • Hot Glue and Hot Glue Gun
  • Black and White Craft Paint
  • Paint Brush
  • Flame-less Tealight Candles
Cut your tubes to the size you want then place a rock or glass pebble on the bottle of the tube for weight and tape into place.  Make a pocket out of tape deep enough at the top to hold the flame-less tealight.  Drop hot glue down the outsides of the tubes to give the effects of melted candle wax.  Paint your tube black and then lightly go over the raised areas with a light brushing of white to give dimension.


I would be remiss in my duties if I didn't remind you to always burn your candles:
  • In a draft-free area
  • Away from flammables
  • With you in the room
  • Away from children or animals
  • Responsibly
I know you know all that.  Think of it as an extra check list.

So, which candle are you going to make first?  How do you decorate for Halloween?







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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

African Spinach Coconut Soup

African Spinach Coconut Soup by substance of Living
Fall weather or cold winter days require soup.  Soup that is filling to the soul and stomach: That's what this African Spinach Coconut Soup does.

I haven't physically traveled much outside the United States but through technology and cuisine I can visit any country my heart desires without having to get shots, update my passport, or visit an airport.

In fact, DH and I have friends who live outside the United States and we get to talk with them on a regular basis due to the internet and mobile phones.  I mean, really, how fantastic is that?  I can be in Canada, Australia, across the United States, and in Turkey all in one day.  DH spoils me to no ends.  :-)

Now, I get to visit Africa...

African Spinach Coconut Soup by substance of Living
African Spinach Coconut Soup

Ingredients:

2 tablespoons Grapeseed Oil
1 cup Onion, chopped
1 tablespoon Garlic, minced
16 oz Spinach, thawed
1/4 teaspoon Pepper
1/4 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
1 can Chopped Tomatoes
1 teaspoon Curry Powder
1 tablespoon Miso
2 cups Water
1 15 oz. can Coconut Milk
2 cups Pasta, prepared
Green Giant Chopped Spinach
Join us for a Giveaway during October 11, 2013 - November 1, 2013
by Green Giant and MyBlogSpark.

Directions:

  • Saute the oil, onion, garlic, pepper, tomatoes, spinach, curry powder, and miso.
  • Add the pasta, coconut milk and water.
  • Simmer over a low heat for about 15 minutes.
African Spinach Coconut Soup by substance of Living

African Spinach Coconut Soup by substance of Living

African Spinach Coconut Soup by substance of Living
African Spinach Coconut Soup

Notes:

  • This is a nice, filling soup that is also quite sophisticated.
  • Any milk can be used in place of the coconut milk.  You'll want to measure out 2 cups.
  • One cup of prepared brown or white rice can be used in place of the pasta.  I used leftover gluten-free Penne pasta.
  • Any vegetable oil will work.
  • If you don't have miso on hand, you can use 2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth and omit the water in the recipe.
  • Other variations might include okra, corn, chick peas, or white beans.
  • This is a new mainstay soup in our house.

You might also enjoy these African soups:
African Curried Vegetable and Coconut Soup by Something New for Dinner
NCR African Curried Coconut Soup by Green Gourmet Giraffe
Coconut Curry Sauce over Brown Rice by Fat and Happy Blog

What country are you visiting tonight through your dinner?  Are you staying local or something from another part of your country?

Would you like to take a trip around the world in 30 days with me?  Where would you like to go?  We won't have to pack a single bag.





P.S., I was compensated for this product review, however my views and comments are my own.  Join us for a Giveaway during October 11, 2013 - November 1, 2013 by Green Giant and MyBlogSpark.
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Friday, October 11, 2013

General Mills Giveaway!

GGWMBanner

Do diets work for you?  They don't work for me.  In fact, I feel like I'm. Starving. To. Death.  Take the "t" away and you have "die".  That's a bit dramatic but that's how I feel when I'm feeling punished by being on a diet.

No longer do I need to feel hungry due to diets.  Many years ago, I realized diets didn't work with me.  That, or I don't do well with diets.  If I were to dig around and deep enough, I'd probably find some statistics to substantiate my feeling that diets don't work.  What I needed was a way of life.  Something that would stay with me through the years.

Thankfully, Green Giant has been listening.  Not really sure if they have actually teamed up with Weight Watchers, but their frozen foods have a point system assigned to them.   Green Giant's frozen vegetables are vibrant in color and have a nice crunch that you would find with fresh veggies.  That means that we can have nice vegetables year round helping us maintain a lifestyle instead of bouncing from one diet to the next.

Green Giant 2-Week Meal Plan







***
GIFT PACK:
I was told that, "If you are willing to complete a blog post, we will send you a gift pack containing:
• VIP Coupon(s) for Green Giant® products
An additional, identical gift pack will be given to you to share with family and/or friends, or possibly a blog reader."

What I actually received was an incredible package that included:
My ACTUAL Gift Pack from Green Giant through MyBlogSpark

  • 5 FREE Coupons for Green Giant Frozen Boxed Vegetables
  • Gym Bag
  • Water Bottle with Infuser
  • Health and Fitness Notebook
  • Target Gift Card
My best guess would be that you too will receive an incredible package like mine.
Now for the Rules
  • Submissions close at 11:59PM (South Carolina timezone) on Friday, November 1, 2013
  • Each person can earn up to 10 entries:  Be sure to leave a separate comment below for each entry to count.
    • FIVE entry points for receiving Substance of Living in your email inbox.  Be sure to leave a comment below letting us know that you are now signed up or are already receiving our newsletters.
    • ONE entry point each for following Substance of Living at:
    • ONE entry point for answering one of the following questions in the comments section of this post:
      • How do you maintain your lifestyle and fitness goals?
      • Which Green Giant frozen vegetable is your favorite and how do you prepare it?

Random.org will be used to select 1 winner.  The Winner will be announced on Thursday, November 7th.  So be sure to check back!

I look forward to reading all your comments and tips for maintaining a healthy lifestyle.  Good luck!



The information and prize pack have been provided by Green Giant through MyBlogSpark.  This contest is available for shipping in the U.S. and entrants must be over 18 years of age.

Be sure to visit General Mills along with Green Giant and follow on Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube.


Disclosure: The information and prize pack have been provided by Green Giant® through MyBlogSpark.
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Thursday, October 10, 2013

24 Songs to Play at Your Halloween Party

It seems that over the years I've run around like a crazy woman looking for a CD (cassette - can you remember those?) of songs to play at my Halloween party.  Unfortunately by the time I start to think about the music portion of the party, the selection is completely picked over.  So this year music is my first priority and here is a sampling of songs that will be played.


Halloween Party Songs:

  • Devil With A Blue Dress - Mitch Ryder
  • That Old Black Magic - Ella Fitzgerald
  • Witchcraft - Nelson Riddle
  • (Don't Fear) The Reaper - Blue Oyster Cult
  • Every Day Is Halloween - Ministry
  • I Put A Spell On You - Screamin' Jay Hawkins
  • Sympathy for The Devil - The Rolling Stones
  • Nemesis - Shriekback
  • Season Of The Witch - Donovan
  • Ghost Town - The Specials
  • Spooky - Classics IV
  • The Adams Family Theme - The Horror Theme
  • Ghostbusters  Ray Parker
  • Thriller - Michael Jackson
  • Monster Mash - Bobby "Boris" Pickett
  • Werewolves In London - Warren Zevon
  • I Want Candy - The Strangeloves
  • The Devil Went Down To Georgia - The Charlie Daniels Band
  • Love Potion No. 9 - The Searchers
  • Poison Ivy - Johnny Otis
  • Wild Thing - The Troggs
  • Purple People Eater - George Thorogood
  • Crazy Train - Ozzy Osbourne
  • Bat Out Of Hell - Meatloaf
In addition to these songs, Pandora will be solicited to be the DJ for the evening.  Have you checked out this site lately?  They have all types of songs for party selections.  In fact, I used the 60s,70s,80s station for my recent fondue party.

What will you be listening to at your next Halloween party?




 
P.S.,  I was not paid or in any way endorsed by Pandora for this post.

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Monday, October 7, 2013

19 Group Halloween Costumes - DIY

Group themed costumes are always fun.  Think of things that are found in groups and the options are endless.

Group Themed Costumes

  • Scrubbing Bubbles
  • Bubble Bath
  • Classic Rock Band (Each person is a rock with a band across)
  • Jelly Beans
  • Fruit Salad (Banana, Apple, Grapes)
  • Fork, Spoon, Knife
  • Stop Light, Street Name
  • Signs on the Road (Stop, Rail Road Crossing, Yield)
  • Laundry (Laundry Basket, Washing Machine, Dryer)
  • Ketchup, Mustard, Mayonnaise Packets
  • Taco Bell Sauces Packets
  • Car Race (Cars, Flag, Lights)
  • Spaghetti and Meatballs

Or you might like to take one of these suggestions this year.

Paper, Rock, Scissors Group Halloween Costumes by Lauren Conrad
Paper, Rock, Scissors Group Halloween Costumes


Fruit of the Loom Halloween Costumes for a Group as seen on PLAID nau.ed
Fruit of the Loom Group Halloween Costumes


Crayola Crayon Group Halloween Costume by It Girl Vibe
Crayola Crayon Group Halloween Costume

One remaining deviled egg remaining...  Make this into a group thing since no one can eat just one.
Deviled Egg DIY Halloween Costume by Serious Eats
Deviled Egg Halloween Costume


Fast Food Gang Halloween Costumes by College Humor
Fast Food Gang Halloween Costumes


BLT Sandwich Group Halloween Costume by Parents.com
Bacon, Lettuce Tomato Sandwich Group Halloween Costume

With the help of some netting, plastic wrap, felt, cardboard, poster board, balloons, fabric and a few stitches, all of these costumes are do-able.  Have fun.  

What is your group or family going to be this year?  I can't wait to hear all the cool ideas!







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Friday, October 4, 2013

DIY Scary Halloween Costumes

There's still plenty of time to make your own scary costume.  Choose from one in the list or expand on one of the pictures below.


Scary Halloween Costume Ideas:





Electrified Halloween Costume as seen on Costume Pop
Electrified Halloween Costume


Scary Headless Body Halloween Costume as seen on Coolest Halloween Costumes
Headless Body Halloween Costume


Cereal Killer Halloween Costume by Shorebread
Cereal Killer Halloween Costume


Girl from The Ring Halloween Costume as seen on The Daily Green
Girl from "The Ring" Halloween Costume

Are you scared yet?

After seeing these ideas and allowing my imagination to run wild, I'm not sure if I'll be going anywhere or opening my door on Halloween night.  BWAAAAHHHH!


Think of things that used to scare you as a child.  What scares you today?






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