Thursday, January 30, 2014

History of Valentine's Day

So where did this whirlwind of Valentine's Day celebrations all stem from, anyway? How did we get to this point, where February 14 equals a mad rush of ordering Valentine's Day flowers before the florists close their doors?

To be honest, no one is entirely clear. There's a lot of mystery when it comes to exact history and origins of what we now call Valentine's Day. There are actually three men named Saint Valentine after whom the day could have been named, and unfortunately we don't have a lot of documentation to provide us with more information.

Either way, there are a couple of popular legends explaining the origins of Valentine's Day. Here are our two favourites:

  1. Way back in 200AD, the Roman Emperor of the time had a newsflash revelation that men who were single were more likely to fight in battle, as they had less to lose. In the quest to gain more soldiers, he created a law that forbade young men to marry. A priest named Valentine, who was a big fan of true love, wouldn't stand for this, and started marrying couples in secret. He was executed for his efforts, but (if the legend is true) his legacy lives on as people are able to freely express their love for one another every year on February 14.

  2. Again in Ancient Rome, a man named Valentine used to help Christians escape from prison, until he himself was captured. From his jail cell, he would write letters to a girl who he was in love with, signing them with "from your Valentine". And the rest, they say, is history!

  3. Since then, Valentine’s Day has evolved to become a day of flowers, chocolate and hearts. Another mystery is how Valentine’s Day and flowers came to be so closely tied. With online flower shops with Valentine’s Day offers like this so prevalent nowadays, it’s easy to forget that it wasn’t always this way. While no one knows how it happened, here are our best theories on how flowers have come to be the symbol of Valentine’s Day.

    1. According to a Roman myth, one day Cupid was on his way up to Mt. Olympus to bring the gods a pot of sweet nectar.  On his way up, he spilled the nectar on the ground, and from that spot roses grew. Voila. Valentine’s Day roses!

    2. Once again in Ancient Rome, it was believed that one day a wood nymph dancing in the fields was seen by Vertumnus, The God of Spring, who fell in love with her on the spot. When he reached for her, though, the wood nymph was frightened so out of protection and pity the other gods let her sink into the earth where she became a daisy. Voila. Daisies!

    3. According to Brownie Locks there are some deep routed, traditional meanings behind the other flowers we now send for Valentines Day. Some of our favourites include:

      1. Gardenia = I love you secretly

      2. Rose= I love you passionately

      3. Violet = I return your love

      4. So while we don’t know where it came from, or why, what we do know is that Valentine’s Day is here to stay. Regardless of the true origins, these stories are kind of fun to think about.  Wow your special Valentine with these fun facts.

        Article was written by Ruth Bazemore, a mother of three who enjoys writing and gardening in her free time.

        Monday, January 27, 2014

        The Americans Season 1 on Blu-ray Prize Pack Giveaway

        Gear up for The Americans Season 1,
        Available on Blu-ray and DVD February 11th

        Enter for your chance to win a Blu-ray copy of FX’s sexy, heart pounding, spy thriller and a Russian-styled Ushanka hat!

        The Americans” Season 1

        The Americans, Season 1 blasts its way onto Blu-ray and DVD February 11th. There’s no better way to celebrate than by entering to win a Blu-ray copy of Season 1 to add to your collection, as well as a Russian styled Ushanka hat. Be careful where you wear the hat though, your neighbors may begin to think you’re an undercover Russian KGB spy!

        Secrets can be deadly in this suspenseful thriller about undercover Russian spies in 1980s Washington. Philip (Matthew Rhys) and Elizabeth Jennings (Keri Russell) seem to be a typical suburban couple, but they’re actually lethal KGB agents plotting to bring down America. As the Cold War escalates, Philip and Elizabeth must take extreme measures to continue their mission and keep their true identities hidden. But when an FBI agent moves in across the street, they become ensnared in a pulse-pounding game of cat and mouse.

        Blu-ray & DVD Features
        • The Colonel” Commentary featuring Joseph Weisberg, Joel Fields and Noah Emmerich
        • Executive Order 2579: Exposing the Americans
        • Perfecting the Art of Espionage
        • Ingenuity Over Technology
        • Gag Reel
        • Deleted Scenes
        • Trailers

        Sunday, January 26, 2014

        Are Sports Stars Paid Too Much?

        The question of whether professional athletes are paid too much has inspired more debates than can be counted, but it still has no definite answer – indeed, the only way to truly answer that is to decide for yourself. With that said, the debates bring several intangible, unquantifiable metrics into play which can't be defined well enough to lend credence to either side. This article is going to look at both sides of the argument.

        No, athletes are not over paid.

        The camp that says athletes are in no way overpaid makes several good points. Professional athletes, while it may seem as though they only play a game, spend the vast majority of their year working out, practicing, and spending hours and hours a day under extreme physical duress in order to improve their bodies and their level of skill. They eat restrictive diets, and live under the rule of a draconian personal trainer.

        Athletes also put themselves at great physical risk. Football players, for instance, can receive life-altering injuries in the course of a game, but they do so anyway. A single one of these injuries is enough to end their career, and potentially make them unable to work for the rest of their lives. Many people see this as reason enough for the massive amounts of pay they receive, but then there is another aspect to what professional athletes bring: entertainment and distraction. For most, watching the game is a way to relax. It's a way to bond with family and friends and forget about the cares and troubles of the world for a bit. Some would say that is priceless on its own.

        Yes, they are overpaid.

        The camp that argues that athletes should not be paid as much as they are also brings up several good points. While athletes do provide entertainment and distraction, they make ten times more what the President makes – the man in charge of running the free world, whether he's doing a great job of it or not. None of the government officials, whose jobs are arguably more important than that of any tennis or baseball player, make anywhere near the same amount of money, at least not from their positions. Any additional income they generate is due to their own personal investments and endeavors.

        The main argument is that athletes are not actually public servants, and that entertainment can come from other sources. Firemen, policemen, and the armed forces should all be paid much more than they are because of the service they provide; these men and women serve to protect society against troubles and heartache, but barely make enough to get by sometimes. In addition, these men and women serve as good role models for children, where athletes are often in the headlines for domestic troubles, substance abuse, and more. For instance, take Justin Bieber: he is paid millions to make a mess of his career, spitting off balconies and sleeping with prostitutes. While he isn't an athlete, the logic is the same. He's a poor role model, contributes nothing to society, but makes more than any doctor can ever hope to make.


        So are athletes paid too much? Yes and no. The answer depends on your perspective; if civil servants were paid fairly, then the answer would be no. Firemen, policemen, doctors, etc. should all be paid around the same level as professional athletes, if not a bit more. However, since this is not the case, then yes. Athletes are paid entirely too much money. Most of them could lose half of their income and still make more in a year than many people make in a lifetime.

        Sarah writes for all pro about sports and news.

        Saturday, January 25, 2014

        Canadian Women's Ski Jumping Team Recipes

        Courtesy of Lesley Stowe, lead sponsor of the Women's Ski Jumping Team, here are delicious recipes from team members Atsuko Tanaka, Taylor Henrich and Alexandra Pretorius:

        Atsuko’s Flight
        Avocado & Green Pea Dip
        Courtesy of Lesley Stowe Fine Foods

        1 ripe avocado
        2 tbsp. (30 mL) lime juice
        ½ clove garlic, minced
        2 cups (500 mL) sweet green peas, thawed
        1 tsp. (5 mL) sea salt
        cayenne or hot sauce

        Spoon out the avocado flesh and put into a food processor. Add the lime juice and garlic. Add the green peas and salt, then process until you have a smooth puree. Add cayenne or hot sauce for a kick. Serve with Raincoast Seed Crisps.

        Taylor’s Take Off
        Olive & Fig Tapenade
        Courtesy of Lesley Stowe Fine Foods

        1 cup (250 mL) fresh figs, quartered
        1 cup (250 mL) pitted niçoise olives or other brined black olives
        1 tbsp. (15 mL) capers, drained
        1 large clove garlic, crushed
        1 tsp. (5 mL) fresh thyme leaves
        3 tbsp. (45 mL) olive oil
        1 tbsp. (15 mL) fresh lemon juice
        Sea salt and freshly ground pepper

        In a food processor, roughly chop the figs. Add the olives, capers, garlic and thyme; pulse until combined and slightly coarse. Add the oil and lemon juice; pulse to combine. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Cover and refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve with Raincoast Fig and Olive Crisps.

        Alexandra’s Inrun
        Caramelized Onion Blue Cheese Dip
        Courtesy of Lesley Stowe Fine Foods

        1 tbsp. (15mL) olive oil
        1/4 cup (50mL) mayonnaise
        3/4 cup (175mL) sour cream
        3 oz. (85g) blue cheese (Roquefort, Danish blue or stilton)
        6 oz. (170g) cream cheese
        4 tsp. (20mL) fresh lemon juice
        sea salt and freshly ground pepper

        Heat the olive oil in a small sauté pan to medium-low add onion, cover and cook until deep golden brown, stirring occasionally, about 20 mins. Cool.
        Whisk together mayonnaise and sour cream in a medium bowl add the blue cheese and cream cheese mash with a rubber spatula until smooth. Stir in caramelized onion. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Serve with Raincoast Cranberry Hazelnut Crisps or wheat-free Raincoast Rosemary Oat Crisps.

        Canadian Women Ski Jumpers
        Winter Kale Salad with Pine Nuts
        Courtesy of Lesley Stowe Fine Foods

        1 bunch of black kale
        2–3 tbsp. (30–45mL) balsamic vinegar
        zest of 1⁄2 lemon
        sea salt – to taste
        freshly ground pepper
        1⁄4–1⁄3 cup (50–75mL) olive oil
        a shot of chili oil (optional)
        parmesan – lots grated
        1⁄4 cup (50mL) currants – soak for 10 min & drain
        1⁄4 cup (50mL) pine nuts lightly toasted

        Remove the tougher stems and very finely julienne the kale leaves.
        Whisk together the vinegar, lemon zest, salt, pepper & olive oil. Toss on the julienned kale.
        Add the parmesan, currants and pine nuts just before serving (the nuts will go soggy if they sit in the vinaigrette too long). You can eat it right away but it softens & mellows if left to sit for at least 15 mins. Serve with Raincoast Crisps.

        To motivate and inspire the team, Canadians can show their support by sharing a personalized good luck message on Lelsey Stowe's official social media platforms. Lesley Stowe will contribute $1 per message, to a max $5,000 to the team.

        Thursday, January 23, 2014

        Chicago’s Top Spots for Pampered Pets

        Nowadays pets are considered to be one of the family and everyone wants what is best for their little fur babies. From top quality pet boarding to a full on pamper day, our little furry friends have never had it so good. With nails needing to be trimmed, coats needing to be groomed and ears needing to be cleaned, it’s a full time job pampering your pooch. For those of you who live in the city, here is AreaVibes top pick of Chicago’s best professional pet groomers.

        The Upscale Tail Pet Grooming Salon

        1419 Plainfield-Naperville Road (630) 632-8245

        The professional pet grooming team at this up market salon have won a string of awards that reflect their dedication and hard work. From basic hand grooming to hand stripping, scissoring and general coat maintenance through to conformation show grooming you can be sure your dog is in experienced hands. They offer professional consultations and maintenance schedules as well as free lessons on how to take care of your pets at home. Owners Kendra and Jennie have over 25 years combined experience to make your fur baby stay happy, healthy and look a million dollars.

        Pet Care Plus

        1328 W. Lake Street (312) 397-9077

        Pet Care Plus prides itself on treating every dog as an individual and really takes the time to get to know each dog. The salon offers day care, boarding, training, walking and grooming services in state of the art facilities. With glass door dog boarding suites, a fully quipped grooming salon the only outdoor in-ground swimming pool and the largest outdoor play space in the city, it is no wonder this salon has won a string of awards.

        Tucker Pups

        219 Carpenter Street (312) 829-8787

        Tucker Pups offers a 10,000 square foot facility in the West Loop, adjacent to downtown. Conveniently located to some of Area Vibes best neighborhoods it offers a convenient and easily accessed location. Services include dog day care, overnight boarding, training and grooming. The staff at Tucker Pups are professional, knowledgeable, experienced and truly passionate about the health and well being of all the dogs. The facility has large indoor and outside areas with artificial grass, pools and play equipment. Dogs are not caged here unless specifically requested and are divided up depending on their temperament.


        Lakeview 1033 W. Belmont Avenue (773) 244-1600

        Brad Kriser has 22 dog grooming salons across the U.S. with 2 locations in Chicago. Kriser’s salon uses all natural products and a gentle approach. Services include teeth brushing, special breed cuts, de-shedding treatments, grooming and more for any breed of dog or cat. The salon also stocks a wide range of natural food brands to keep your pet in tip top condition and the staff are happy to offer advice on caring for your pet at home.

        Did we miss your favorite dog grooming salon? If so, drop us a line and tell us where you take your pooches to be pampered and why it’s a great salon.

        David Wilson is a travel writer finding the best places to live and visit in the U.S.

        The Adventures of Chuck & Friends on DVD Review

        The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.*

        The Adventures of Chuck & Friends:
                       Trucks Versus Wild
           Available on DVD January 21, 2014 from Shout! Factory Kids
        The unbelievably fun adventures of Chuck, the little dump truck with big dreams, and his friends—Digger, Handy, Rowdy, Biggs, Boomer and Flip — continue on January 21, 2014 with the release of The Adventures of Chuck & Friends: Trucks Versus Wild on DVD from Shout! Factory Kids. Featuring 10 more exciting episodes from The Adventures Of Chuck & Friends, watch as Chuck and the gang have adventures with a helpful mechanic, a camping trip, a star-studded trip to the beach and more in these awesome cartoons guaranteed to put fun into high gear! Priced to own at $12.97, The Adventures of Chuck & Friends: Trucks Versus Wild also contains a brand new sing-along.

        The Adventures of Chuck & Friends series is currently airing on The Hub TV Network in the U.S. and on Treehouse in Canada.  

        Episodes Include:
        1.      The Checkup
        2.      Chuck’s Perfect Plans
        3.      Trucks Vs. Wild
        4.      Kid Stuff
        5.      As The Engine Coughs
        6.      Beach Blanket Uh-Oh
        7.      Fender Bender
        8.      Sleep-Driving Chuck
        9.      Mind Your Own Business
        10.  The Pothole

        Bonus Features:
        Also includes a brand new sing-along!

        MY REVIEW

        This is a cute and colourful cartoon that any child who just loves truck will absolutely love this one. The story and everything will keep your child entertained.

        I highly recommend this.

        5 out of 5

        Monday, January 20, 2014

        Is Winter Over Yet?

        Who else is sick and tired of winter?  I know I am.  

        This winter was bad. Between the freezing rain , snow and very cold temperatures it really got me feeling blah and on top of that we have so far been having a horrible 2014. 

        Last Friday and Saturday it snowed so on Saturday afternoon I went outside my James (my husband) and did some shoveling. Not halfway through and I slipped and fell on the ice. Unfortunately I sprained my ankle.

        I was in bed most of Saturday because I had to keep my foot elevated and put ice on it.  James was great. He brought up a drink for me when I needed it and Azrael (Our dog) didn't want to leave my side.

        On Sunday I forced myself to go downstairs and laid down on the sofa. I watched movies and did a bit of reading. Azrael slept on my lap for quite some time and James was awesome taking care of me and making sure Azrael and Meeloo (our cat) were taken care of as well. James even made dinner.

        Today (Monday) I am in a little bit less pain but I still need to stay off my feet as much as possible but it is difficult since James had to go back to work and Azrael needs to go out sometimes and such. Plus I think I am expecting some parcels today so this will be a challenge since it is snowing out and it hurts like crazy when I put on some shoes. Today is the first time ever that I am hoping I do not get any parcels.

        All I plan on doing today is rest with my feet up and watching some movies and tv shows. I will most likely also be reading and snuggling with Azrael.

        Is Shredded Paper OK for Hamsters and Rabbits?

        Rabbits and hamsters need their bedding to be made up of soft material. Shredded paper is one type of material that can be used for this purpose.

        Best Used As A Base For Bedding

        Ideally, for rabbits and hamsters, shredded paper should be used as a base for bedding. After the paper has been placed at the bottom of the rabbit hutch or hamster cage, straw or hay should then be placed on top of the paper. Shredded paper is also a much better option than sawdust, because this can enter your pet's eyes and nose. Wood shavings, too, are another good option when it comes to a bedding material for a rabbit or hamster.

        Possible Issues With Shredded Paper

        Any shredded paper that's used for bedding for your hamster or rabbit should be checked before it's put in their cage or hutch. Things to look out for are sharp edges, and whether or not the paper is dry and clean.

        Specifically with hamsters in mind you should try and use paper that contains no ink. Though a lot of modern ink is soya based you should err on the side of caution if you're uncertain.

        There can be issues with all types of ink on paper that has been shredded. Anything printed out via a computer can be problematic because the ink is likely to run when wet, while newspaper ink can end up causing unsightly blotches on your pet's coat. This underlines the fact that shredded blank paper is the best option. All types of paper can be used for bedding, including stationery paper, paper towels and toilet rolls.

        Hamsters are inclined to store paper in their mouths and then chew on the paper to reduce the size of the pieces. This matter can, alternatively, be addressed by making the pieces of paper as small as possible before they are placed in your hamster's cage. This will consequently reduce the risk of your hamster chewing on the paper.

        There can be more of a odour when using shredded paper, compared to when wood shavings are used. So be prepared to clean our your pet's home every couple of days, when you use shredded paper as bedding material for your rabbit or hamster.

        Safer For Rabbits Than Hamsters

        Shredded paper will be okay as bedding for your rabbit or hamster in most cases, but there are less likely to be issues with a rabbit compared to a hamster. A rabbit will not be so likely to store paper in its mouth and eat it. With a hamster there is a small risk that its health could be affected if it has too much of an unhealthy urge to eat even pristine paper.

        For hamsters particularly it's important to remember to use shredded paper as a base for bedding rather than for bedding as a whole. This will then lessen the chances of your pet digesting the paper.

        One of the most beneficial aspects of shredded paper in your pet's home is that it will effectively absorb the damp. Thus, by using shredded paper as part of your pet's bedding, you will also simplify the process of cleaning out a hutch or a cage.

        Sarah writes for All Star Shredding in Ireland and various small company websites.

        Sunday, January 19, 2014

        A Clueless Man's Guide To Buying Flowers

        There are some things that men just don’t tend to know anything about and one of those things is often buying flowers.

        For men flowers are purchased on special occasions and that tends to be the only time that they will take an interest in anything floral. So, we’re going to make things easier for you and help you when buying flowers for Valentine’s Day or any other day of the year.

        The Girl

        Even though you may not believe it, not all flowers are exactly the same and your girl may life specific flowers. Learn a little about here; find out what her favourite colour is, or what sort of flowers she has a soft spot for. Also, try and think about the sort of person she is – is she serious, quirky, romantic or otherwise – this can also help you decide on the sort of flowers for her. Obviously, if she’s allergic to flowers you’ll need to come up with something else for her.

        What do they Mean?

        You want the flowers to mean something as this is generally the purpose of giving them to a loved one. They may be a thank you flower, or a happy birthday, wedding, love or even a flower as an apology.

        Though you may not believe it different flowers mean different things and you should try and get flowers for that specific thing when deciding on flowers. It can save you a lot of hassle and make your gift a lot more apt.

        Where to Shop

        Shopping for flowers has gotten a lot easier with the web. You can decide on whether or not you wish to buy flowers online or a local florist and when doing so you can also decide on where to go by closely looking at reviews. Farmers markets can be great, although online places such as Interflora often offer great deals with vouchers and the likes of Lovemycoupons.

        Help is at Hand

        Of course, if you’re still completely clueless it’s best to ask the professionals. You can do this by going to a chosen florists or using online live answer services on many sites nowadays.

        Ask the person who works there questions such as what flowers are suitable for your occasion, offer them information on the girl’s favourite colours and also how you would like them to look – floral or green or otherwise. Also, advise them of a budget that you wish to spend so they will get you something in your price range, though not vastly above it. Don’t be shy or else you could end up with quite a shock – especially if you never have purchased flowers before.

        Girls tend to love flowers and buying them flowers as a gift is a lovely way to mark an occasion such as Valentine’s Day or otherwise. Being creative and going out by yourself also means that you are a little different and not offering the same twelve red roses bouquet that everyone else receives, which is often quite a nice thing to do.

        Saturday, January 18, 2014

        Danny Phantom: The Complete Series on DVD Review

        The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.*

        Find out how an average kid became part ghost-and all ghost hunter! With the extraordinary ability to turn himself into a super-heroic apparition, Danny Fenton must track down and defeat ghastly ghouls, while keeping his identity a secret!

        All three seasons of Danny Phantom will be available in one gleefully ghoulish package when Shout! Factory releases Danny Phantom: The Complete Series on DVD January 28th, 2014. Get ready to take a trip to the other side with this 10-DVD set featuring all 53 original episodes of the hit Nickelodeon series.

        And you thought the hassles of everyday high school life were bad! Meet Danny Fenton, a good-natured, ordinary 14-year-old kid with extraordinary powers. After an accident involving ‘Ghost Zone’ portal of his two highly eccentric ghost-hunting parents, Danny now has the half-ectoplasmic DNA of a ghost, giving him the ability to fight off the horrible spooks, specters and vengeful ghost hunters threatening our world! But before Danny can defeat anything, he must first learn to control his newfound powers with the help of his best friends, tech-head Tucker and self-proclaimed goth Sam.

        Danny Phantom features an all-star voice cast, including David Kaufman (The Buzz on Maggie), Grey DiLisle (Rugrats, The Fairly Odd Parents), Rickey D’Shon Collins (Recess), Colleen O'Shaughnessey (Naruto), Rob Paulsen (Pinky and the Brain), Kath Soucie (Dexter’s Laboratory, Ben 10) and Martin Mull, Frank Welker (Transformers).

         MY REVIEW

        I watched Danny Phantom: The Complete Series a few days ago and really thought it was pretty good. The graphics are great and the story line is good and fun. It is good for all ages so if you want to watch it with your child you will not be bored to death. 
        There is no blood,guts and gory stuff so you don't have to worry about your child watching these 53 episodes. 

        I give this 5 out of 5 

         Danny Phantom: The Complete Series  is available on DVD on January 28th in stores near you.

        Friday, January 17, 2014

        How To Keep Up Easily With Caring For Your Roof

        Roofing Company in Houston TXRoofing is something that everyone that owns a home needs to worry about, particularly when leaks and poor insulation cause issues. The good news is that you can learn how to install the materials on your own. Read this article if you want great do-it-yourself tips that will help you save money on taking care of your roof properly.

        • Don't procrastinate replacing your shingles. Replacing or fixing shingles now will prevent trouble and energy in the future. Maintaining your roof will last much longer for you.

        • Leaks often come from shingles, but you should also inspect your roof's foundation. Water can get into many areas that are rotting. Check all entry points to make sure that there is no deterioration.Safety should be a strong consideration with taking on your roof. You can get hurt if you try to fix your roof under severe weather conditions. Put a bucket under that leak until weather conditions improve and wait for clear weather.

        • Roofing Company in Houston TX

        • Make sure any roofer has liability insurance. The main thing that this will show you about a policy bodes well for a contractor's reliability. Secondly, if something were to get damaged while your roof was being worked on, their insurance will pay for any problems.

        • Make sure that the roofer you hire is trained and skilled. You might try to get referrals from family and friends for personal recommendations. This is important because you want to have a poor roofing work that could be expensive later on.

        • Make sure your roofer has credentials, valid certifications.Nearly every locale has a license requirement, do not neglect checking for current and valid licenses from any contractors you are considering.

        • Don't get discouraged if you can't locate the source of a leak is originating from. You are going to find the problem, and having a buddy will help as well.If your home is large, talk to your helper by cell phone when you test various areas to avoid excess water from getting into the house.

        • Don't pay the full cost of a roof prior to installation. Many conniving contractors actually never return to finish work after receiving full payment only to disappear once they receive the funds. Always inspect the condition of roofing materials that are being used to repair or replace your roof for possible defects. Be certain your materials are intact at all stages of roofing work. Never agree to contract terms that isn't in writing.A lot of times when a person has a verbal contract won't protect you if anything happens down the work isn't done right.A written contract can help should any problems or not a contractor has not done what they promised to do.

          You do not necessarily need to enlist the help of a professional to fix a roof; sometimes, you can do these things yourself. By educating yourself on roofing, you will be better able to make the best decision on how to properly care for your roof. Keep these tips in mind to help you get your roofing job done properly the first time.

          No matter how large or small your roof may be, or what your roof is made of, our Houston roofing company can handle any necessary repairs—from leaks to missing shingles and more. Depend on Allegiance Roofing to address your roofing needs on time as we present you with solutions that accommodate your budget. Unlike some other Houston roofing companies, we provide free inspections and on-site estimates so that we can begin the process of repairing or replacing your roof immediately. Contact us today to find out why we are the best roofing company in Houston!

          Thursday, January 16, 2014

          Just a Drop Review and Giveaway CANADA ONLY

          Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

          One drop before you go eliminates odours every time!

          Now there’s a new and better way to eliminate personal bathroom odours that occur. One or two drops of this natural plant extract in the toilet, before you go, forms a film on the water surface that traps and eliminates embarrassing odours before they escape into the air. All you’ll leave behind is a fresh, light scent.

          • Eliminates odours before they occur
          • Innovative product really works
          • One 15ml bottle lasts for months
          • Equivalent to 3 cans of spray
          • Advanced concentrated formula
          • Available in 3 great scents
          • Biodegradable & Safe for septic

          MY REVIEW

          Just a Drop is a wonderful product because it actually does what it claims to do. I have a very sensitive nose so scents tend to give me headaches and sprays give me headaches but now we put a drop in the toilet bowl and then don't have to worry about having to use a spray because this product really works and because you just need to put a drop in the toilet these little bottles last quite some time..  

          An other reason why I love Just a Drop is that the company is Canadian and you can get this at Walmart, Shoppers Drug Mart, Loblaws, London Drugs, Thrifty Foods and more.

          I highly recommend this product. 

          I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

          Carrie on Blu-ray Combo pack Review

          The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.*

           Fear her power!  Unleash the telekinetic horror when CARRIE debuts on Digital HD January 3 and on Blu-ray and DVD January 14 from
          Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios and Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment. An exhilarating reimagining of Stephen King’s iconic best-seller from director Kimberly Peirce (Boys Don’t Cry, Stop-Loss), this tale of small town terror stars Chloë Grace Moretz (Kick-Ass 2, Dark Shadows) and Julianne Moore (Don Jon, Game Change).

          Carrie is a reimagining of the classic horror tale about Carrie White (Chloë Grace Moretz), a shy girl outcast by her peers and sheltered by her deeply religious mother (Julianne Moore), who unleashes telekinetic terror on her small town after being pushed too far at her senior prom.

          Directed by Kimberly Peirce and produced by Kevin Misher, with a screenplay by
          Lawrence D. Cohen and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa, the film is a production of
          Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures and Screen Gems and was released in theatres on
          October 18, 2013.

          Showcasing over an hour of heart-pounding exclusive special features, the CARRIE Blu-ray includes behind-the-scenes featurettes, commentary from director Peirce, deleted and extended scenes, the hit “Telekinetic Coffee Shop Surprise” viral video and an alternate ending that is sure to keep fans on the edge of their seat!

          MY REVIEW

          I have seen the original and the  tv remake and ofcourse read the book and I have to say I am so impressed with this one. It is different and more modern than the original movie and the book but I very much liked it. I was so worried that they would have messed it up but I thought it was very well done and the acting was good.

          I am a huge horror movie fan and personally I didn't find it scary but mind you I don't get scared easily when it comes to horror movies.

          Make sure you watch the features because there is a alternate ending and other cool features.

          I highly recommend this movie.

          I give this 5 out of 5

          Carrie is available in stores now.

          Wednesday, January 15, 2014

          Runner Runner Blu-ray Combo Pack Review

          The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.*

          Justin Timberlake and Ben Affleck star in this high-stakes crime thriller where the lure of easy money is the riskiest bet of all. When Princeton grad student Richie Furst (Timberlake) believes he’s been swindled by an online poker site, he heads to Costa Rica to confront gambling tycoon Ivan Block (Affleck), the man he thinks is responsible. But Richie will soon face the ultimate power play as he finds himself caught between Block’s promises of unlimited wealth and the zealous FBI agent (Anthony Mackie) trying to bring him down.

          The Blu-ray Combo Pack includes a bonus feature that reveals the true story behind the world of online poker, as well as never before seen bonus content.
          The Runner Runner Blu-ray Combo Pack also includes a Digital HD copy of the film.

          MY REVIEW

          Seriously this isn't the best movie I have seen. The acting was good but the story was predictable and I was very disappointed in it. I had a hard time finishing watching it because I found it boring . I know some of you might like this but personally I thought it just isn't worth to buy it.  

          I give this 1 out of 5

          Tuesday, January 14, 2014

          Enough Said on Blu-ray Review

          The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.*

          James Gandolfini, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Catherine Keener shine in this heartwarming comedy that A.O. Scott of The New York Times calls “a small miracle of a movie.” 

          Divorced mom Eva (Louis-Dreyfus) may be falling for Albert (Gandolfini), a sweet, funny, like-minded divorcé. But as their relationship blossoms, Eva befriends Marianne (Keener), who’s always complaining about her ex-husband. When Eva realizes that Albert is the target of Marianne’s rants, she begins to question her own perceptions about first impressions and second chances. 

          Special Features
          Second Takes – Blu-ray exclusive
          Promotional Featurettes
          Theatrical Trailer

          You can now purchase Enough Said in online and in stores near you. 

          MY REVIEW

          I really wasn't expecting to like this movie but it is a funny and heartwarming comedy that kept me entertained and yes I actually had a few laughs. 

          You have noticed I am hard to please when it comes to comedies and it isn't really the genre I will give high ranking but this movie is different. I loved every minutes of this one and I actually recommend it. Shocker eh? 

          Acting in this movie is fantastic and story is fantastic as well. 

          I give this 4 out of 5

          Monday, January 13, 2014



          Kicking off the New Year with a bang, L3O Interactive and Iceberg Interactive have revealed that the upcoming 4X space-strategy game Horizon (PC) is headed to Steam early February 2014. Horizon is currently in the late Beta stages on Steam’s Early Access program, where it has an active and involved community that’s helped shape the game’s development and added to its robust feature list. The game will also be released in boxed European retail.
          Download new screenshots for Horizon HERE:
          Horizon is a single-player 4X game of galactic exploration and conquest in which players control humanity’s destiny. L30 Interactive's title stands out from the 4X crowd with its focus a unique storyline focused on mankind’s expansion beyond its own solar system and immediate confrontation with two powerful and ancient races bent on shaping the future. One of the features that was added during Early Access, thanks to the community pleading for it, is the option to also play Horizon in ‘classic 4X’ mode, choosing one of eight races to set out and conquer a hostile universe.
          Gamers will venture into deep space, expand into new frontiers and discover alien artifacts on long-abandoned planets, while negotiating, fighting in deep ship-to-ship combat, or partnering with alien species as they reach their intergalactic destinies. They will develop new colonies – and then watch them become galactic centers for trade, industry and science – as well as military bases, outposts and shipyards on their way to conquer new horizons.
          Horizon offers immense customization options including races, ships, and power stations; real-time management of multiple tech research branches and simultaneous turn-based battles; and two distinct play modes – Scenario mode focuses on a story encapsulating the fight between two ancient races with dozens of side missions, and Classic mode, the traditional sandbox play mode 4X gamers have come to love over the years.
          Horizon Gameplay Features Include:
          • Horizon is a deep, accessible 4X space-strategy game that delivers advanced turn-based tactical combat, rich customization, and a vast set of galaxies to explore.
          • The huge storyline gives gamers a chance to interact with 10 alien races and explore ancient cultures, artifacts, and galaxies while engaging in open-ended missions. Gamers can engage in meaningful diplomacy choices that will impact the game outcome, including coordinated actions with allies against enemies.
          • The distinct open-world system spans multiple galaxies with hundreds of star systems and more than 1,000 planets.
          • Two different Gameplay Modes: Scenario Mode offers a story experience focused on the clash of two ancient races, and Classic Mode is the familiar open-ended sandbox experience 4X gamer have grown to love.
          • Using up to 80 tech types with 10 upgrades each, gamers can customize ships, weapons, and combat systems.
          • Tactical ship control includes managing movement, weapons, and more, as well as attacks from planetary and orbital defenses and boarding enemy ships.
          • Design and customize three major areas on your ships: 1) Weapons, 2) Core Systems (armor, sensors, engines, power generator, etc.), and Special Systems (colonizer pods, shields, fighter bays, etc.).
          • A detailed economy and colony management system offers different types of colonies based on player build choices.

          Players can still get in on Horizon’s development process by purchasing the game in Early Access, for $24.99, or pick up the full game next month.

          Console Vs PC Gaming

          Games are necessary for the time pass and enjoyment. It is considered that most of the people like the games only because of the fun. There are lots of types of games available in the markets for the people. It is considered that the games can provide a full time enjoyment to the players or gamers. In fact, the console and PC games are two types of gaming. It is very important for the people to learn about the difference between both the types of gaming. The players can buy essays online to see the main differences there.

          Difference of costs

          The PC games and console games are different from the financial points of view. The PC games are more expensive than console games. It is a clear idea about both the games. This reason makes the clients or players choose the PC games. No doubt console games are in demand rather than the PC games but the price is always higher for the console games. You need to focus on it.

          Units of gaming

          There are various units of gaming. The PC games have no unit except the one. On the other hand, the console games have two units. These two units are PlayStation and Xbox games. Definitely, there are differences present in these units. Most of the people like to play Xbox or PlayStation games because of the extraordinary features. We think the console games are cheaper than PC games because of this main difference.

          Difference of accessories:

          Remember, the matter of accessories is very important. The PC games are considered more favorable in this matter. Actually the PC games need a computer that will never be changed in terms of accessories. You will use the same mouse, keyboard or monitor to play the games. On the other hand the console games need various accessories according to the gaming units. For example, there are three types of accessories having different prices you will need to buy and install. These are given below.

             HDMI cable that costs for at least 30 US dollars.

             Controllers for 50 to 60 US dollars.

             Headsets for 50 to 60 US dollars.

          Remember, there is no subscription required to play the PC games but you need the annual subscriptions for the console gaming. For example, the Xbox games need $60 per year. It means the players will be stuck to the console gaming subscriptions.

          Upgrading and other features

          The CPU can be upgraded up to 3.6 GHz. But the console gaming stations are 3.2 GHz maximum. The storage capacity of PC games is up to 500 GB but the console games have only 250 GB storage. Similarly, the memory of PPC games is 8 GB DDR3 and it can be upgraded up to 16 GB. However, the console games have only 512 MB of GDDR3 RAM. These are the main differences those will help you to decide what types of gaming you should select in order to take more pleasure.

          John Kravz is a representative of that provides excellent help on your writing assignments such an college papers.

          Real Gamer Gear Hoodie Review

          The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.*

          As most of you know I am a gamer so when I got asked to review this special hoodie I jumped on the chance to review it.

          What makes this hoodie different you ask? Well, this hoodie by Real Gamer Gear has a special pocket over the usual pocket. The special pocket has  Velcro to secure the pocket closed .

          I love the pocket. I have put my the PS3 controller in it a few times and walked around the house with it while chatting with my friend and it is big enough to put my PS Vita in it and walk around the house with it. 

          If you aren't a gamer it is good for you too. A few times I went out and put my wallet and my cellphone in extra pocket. What is great is that you never have to worry about anything to fall out of that pocket because of the Velcro.

          I have washed my hoodie a bunch of times since I received it and it still looks the same as the day I got.. Well plus dog hair and cat hair but that is normal in this house.  

          Price is $45 but if you want a gamer tag written on it is is $55. They also sell hats that are $19 and $29.

          I am so happy with this hoodie and a few people commented on it and asking where I got it.  

          If you are a gamer or not, I do recommend these hoodies.  

          Wednesday, January 8, 2014

          The Littlest Pet Shop - Lights, Camera, Fashion! on DVD Review

                    The product(s) featured in this review were provided free of cost to me by the manufacturer or representing PR agency for the sole purpose of product testing. Opinions expressed are my own and are NOT influenced by monetary compensation.*

             It’s Time for Lights, Camera, Fashion!
                        The Littlest Pet Shop - Lights,
                                  Camera, Fashion!
                              Bring Home the Pets on DVD December 17th, 2013
                                               from Shout! Factory Kids

          Meet Blythe. She’s just a regular girl. She loves fashion. She loves her friends. And did we mention that she has the ability to talk to animals? Good thing this secret gift makes her a perfect fit for The Littlest Pet Shop! On December 17th, 2013, Shout! Factory Kids, in collaboration with Hasbro Studios, invite you to join Blythe and her very best friends — Zoe the spaniel, Pepper the skunk, Sunil the mongoose, Russell the hedgehog, Penny the panda, Vinnie the gecko and Minka the monkey — for fashion-filled fun inLittlest Pet Shop:  Lights, Camera, Fashion!

          In addition to five off-the wall adventures, Littlest Pet Shop: Lights, Camera, Fashionalso comes with a  collectible Zoe toy and trading card, and has a suggested retail price of $14.93.

          Now is its second season, Littlest Pet Shop delivers captivating entertainment the whole family can enjoy. Featuring all-new original music by Daytime Emmy® Award nominee Daniel Ingram and the vocal talent of Ashleigh Ball, Tabitha St. Germain, Nicole Oliver and Peter New, Littlest Pet Shop currently airs on The Hub TV Network in the US.  Fans can pre-order their copies of the collection now by

          Episodes Include:
          Mean Isn't Your Color
          Russell Up Some Fun
          Eve Of Destruction
          Summertime Blues

          Bonus Features:

          MY REVIEW

          What kid doesn't like Littlest Pet Shop?  It is cute and funny and so much fun to watch. 
          Where was this cartoon when I was a child? It would have been something I would have loved to watch.  

          Anyways, if your child loves Littlest Pet Shop toys and the cartoon than I know they will absolutely love this one. Like I mentioned before, it is cute and fun and entertaining