Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Party in Your PJs #167

Happy Tuesday!

Welcome to the Party in Your PJs Link Party, where your posts will be seen on three different blogs each week.

You'll also find the Awesome Life Friday link-up here at RCHReviews, every Thursday evening at 8pm ET so we hope to see you there as well.

Are you ready to party? I can't wait to see what you've brought to share!

 Meet the Co-Hosts

Nina @ Grandma Ideas 

Lynda @ Reviews, Chews & How-Tos 

Facebook // Pinterest // Twitter // Instagram

The rules for the group board include:
1. Limit of one pin a day.
2. Just like the party anything goes, but clear wonderful pictures with great descriptions are most successful.
3. Please no Spam ( Spammers will be deleted without warning)
4.  If you pin to the Pinterest Board, please link to the Party in Your PJs Party also, the party runs from 7 pm Tuesdays-Midnight Saturday (Central Time)
5.  Finally have fun and share this group board  with blog friends and followers!  The more success the group board is the more success you will see from your pins.

Want to be added to the group board?  Follow our Party in Your PJs board and email Kim at thecookiepuzzle@gmail.com

Lynda's Features!

 to see their features - we each pick our own!

All links are pinned to a Party Board...you can follow the board on Pinterest...feel free to follow the board, there is lots of inspiratioPn to be found there.

Ok...let's party!

Rules -Link to post, not your home page
-Link to something YOU made, wrote or thought
-No Etsy or Business Pages
-Link Parties, Roundups and Giveaways welcome
- Don't Link and Run! Please visit other links, make friends, learn something new, leave a comment.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Hula Hana's Blue Banana Cocktail - Dirty Dancing #foodnflix

1 comment:

After a few months of playing with the Food n' Flix cooking challenge, I'm starting to regard them as a highlight of my month! It helps a lot that, as he came to understand what it was we were doing, my husband has been an enthusiastic participant, helping me catch food references while we watch the month's movie and making suggestions for how to interpret it in a dish.

This month's challenge, hosted by Chef Sarah Elizabeth, is based on the movie, "Dirty Dancing" - yay! An old favorite!

Other than the reference to a watermelon (the battlecry of awkward brave girls everywhere - "I carried a watermelon!"), I didn't have much notion of this movie as being particularly food rich before watching, but we did find a few:

- During the dance class at the front of the movie, Penny encourages everyone to 'Stomp those grapes!'

- While setting up the dining room, Johnny tells rich boy Robbie, "You just put your pickle on everybody's plate, college boy, and leave the hard stuff to me."

- Dinner table discussion of Baby sending her pot roast to Asia.

- "I carried a watermelon!"

- the song "Mashed Potato is playing where the staff is dirty dancing.

- raiding the kitchen, Baby is offered a variety of leftovers including a brownie, rice pudding, beets, sweet gherkins, cabbage roll, milk...

- Robbie rejects responsibility for Penny's pregnancy, saying "'I didn't spend the summer toasting bagels just to bail out some dumb chick that got knocked up!"

- The family is shown eating breakfast. The women are all having a half a grapefruit, while Dad has a plate of eggs, lox, bagels and schmear. There's orange juice.

- Lisa's entry into the Talent Show is a silly song about Hula Hana, who wants - among other things - a blue banana.

- Kellerman offers Dad a danish.

- at the Talent Show, the family is seen drinking what looks like a cola based cocktail - given the timeframe, this is likely a Cuba Libre.

Additionally, there were a few less direct points of inspiration: the early 60's timeframe made anything retro a good choice, the song the 'Twist' suggesting something twisted in some way, and most importantly, the key point that Kellerman's was a Catskills resort for Jewish vacationers, so the food itself would have been New York Jewish friendly.

I knew I wasn't going to do anything with the watermelon - my husband is not a fan of melons of any sort, and this is intended as a fun thing for us both.

After thinking through all the possibilities that this presented, the final choice had to do with my being mystified about just what on earth was Lisa singing about?  I went to look into the lyrics, and it turns out it is actually follows a pretty classic folk song motif about a woman demanding impossible gifts from her suitors:

Hula Hana of Kamana Whala Hula Bay

Who’s this hula hana, of Kamana Whala Hula Bay?
She will hula when you have a lovely gift she wants, you’ll hear her say,
Bring me a pineapple that doesn't sting 
a bird that swims 
a fish that sings,
I wanna, I really wanna,
Bring me a volcano that blows up all the molten jama and a blue banana,
I canna canna,
Bring me a pineapple that doesn't sting 
a bird that swims 
a fish that sings,
I wanna, I really wanna,
Bring me a volcano that blows up all the molten jama and a blue banana,
I canna canna,
And you can wackle all you wanna, while I hula all the day away....

Even more interestingly, I discovered Jane Brucker, the hilarious actor that plays Lisa in the movie, actually wrote the silly song she sang, while killing time on the set.  Additionally, Brucker was born in Falls Church, VA - the town where we live.

That settled it! We had to do something based on Lisa and her song. Pseudo-Hawaiian/Tiki themes were also very popular in the early 60s, so something retro and over-the-top cheesy would be perfect, but no ham or Spam or pork of any sort, because it should be something that would be at home in the Kellerman dining room.

Which led me back to a 'blue banana' and what made the most sense to me was a ridiculous Curacao-based tropical cocktail!  My lovely husband (who is teaching himself ukelele and gamely practiced playing "Hula Hana" for me) is also my live-in bartender, so I left it to him to figure this out, as long as I could provide a crazy garnish and some umbrella straws.

This is what he came up with:

Hula Hana's Blue Banana Cocktail

Equal Parts:
- DeKeyper Blue Curacao
- Vodka
- DeKeyper Creme de Banana
- Pineapple Juice

Seltzer water to taste

Fruit Kebabs:
- Pineapple Chunks
- Banana Chunks
- Maraschino Cherries

Orange Slices

For the drink, combine liquors and pineapple juice in a shaker with ice, and shake to blend.  Pour into ice filled glasses and top with seltzer water to taste.

Garnish each glass with a fruit kebab, an orange slice, and an umbrella straw.

To go along with our silly drinks, we ordered take out from a nearby New York-style deli, Celebrity Delli.  Michael chose the Celebrity Club, while I - still thinking about how the women all just had grapefruit for breakfast while Dad chowed down on lox and bagels - selected their optimistically named "One Scooper" from their Healthy selections - Watergate chicken salad with grapes, cranberries and almonds, with plenty of cucumbers, slices of tomato and hard boiled egg and cole slaw all on a bed of lettuce, with four wedges of fat pita bread to go with it.

It was quite tasty although there was enough mayonnaise that I question the sincerity of its being the healthier choice!

We brought out take out meals and Hula Hana cocktails onto the balcony and pretended we were vacationing in the Catskills pretending to vacation in Hawaii, until the humidity reminded us both that we were really in the DC region in July and not on vacation at all.  Back indoors to finish eating!

So one last word on this cocktail - it is a TrOpiCaL high octane, kick you in the face with its fruity sweetness drink.  I kind of forgot that I don't like tropical cocktails at all.  Michael liked it (but agreed that this is a very occasional bit of ridiculousness - the hangover caused by more than one would be enough to turn anyone off forever) but it took removing all but about a half a shot of the cocktail blend and filling the glass with seltzer before I could enjoy it enough to drink it.

Even then, it was pretty to look at - a clear pale blue alcoholic sweet punch soda.  A little off key, like Lisa, this drink tries hard to be the 'fun one'.

I did love the garnishes, though!

I can't wait until the end of the month to see how other bloggers are interpreting "Dirty Dancing" - what would you make to go along with it?

Food 'n Flix Club Logo

Friday, July 21, 2017

Neocell Ceramides Skin Hydrator (Review/Giveaway)


I'm at it again, partnering with Neocell to try out a new product, and give my candid opinion of the results, and my experience with said new product. And, once again, Neocell did not disappoint!

I received a bottle of Ceramides Skin Hydrator, with a picture of a beautiful woman submerged in water - she definitely looks hydrated! So, lets see how this works…

The bottle contains 60 capsules, a 30 day supply. Instructions are to take 2 capsules per day. There is not a specific time of day that is better, so they can be taken at any time.

I do suggest making a routine, however. I was not consistent at first with the time of day that I took Ceramides Skin Hydrator, so I missed a few days.

I thought that might effect my results, however it did not - in spite of my own inconsistency, the results were noticeable, as I'll show you shortly.

When looking up some of the impressive stats about Ceramides Skin Hydrator, I noticed 85% of subjects noticed a reduction in scales (rough skin), 80% of subjects felt less pulling sensations, and 80% of subjects felt an improved skin appearance.

I definitely noticed a reduction in scales (apparently I was slowly turning into a dragon!) and much improved skin appearance.

I am really bad about moisturizing regularly - I usually slather lotion on when I notice I am already too dry. You know - reactive vs. proactive! I moisturize my face consistently, but not my hands and body. Oops.

Lately I have noticed that I am more dry than usual. Not only has it been getting hotter and dryer as we move deep into summer, but I have been working out pretty intensively 4 to 6 times a week, getting ready for a fitness competition later this year.

I noticed dry irritated skin all over, including the  palms of my hands, super peely and rough. I just figured that was a part of heavy lifting. Turns out, that is not the case.

If anything, I have been doing more lifting while using Ceramides Skin Hydrator, so I should have what my friends joke about: "man hands." There is a group of 5 of us, and we workout together.  We talk about all sorts of silly things, one of which is the effect of all the hard work we put in: from diet changes, smaller waistlines, defined muscles, looser skin, and dryer skin.

And yet, my hands are far from manly now! Ceramides Skin Hydrator is keeping them soft and supple! For the looser skin, I am going back to Neocell Collagen bursts and my all time favorite, Neocell Collagen protein! They are great for skin elasticity, and they taste great!

So, what are ceramides, and what do they do? 
I believe it is time again, for another lesson at the SCHOOL OF JEN.

Ceramides are lipids naturally found in the skin's outer later that retain moisture, and assist in cell regeneration. When ceramide levels are low, our skin has a hard time retaining moisture - it works as a protective layer to retain moisture. Ceramides are part of the glue that holds the surface of skin cells together.

Dry, irritated, and sensitive skin often lack ceramides - leaving skin more susceptible to environmental factors, just like I had been experiencing with the season changing, which is usually not an issue for me.  Maybe I'm getting old!

I did notice, a few weeks into taking Ceramides Skin Hydrator that I was looking less scaly on my palms and shins.

Does scaly shins sound weird? I notice that after shaving my legs, my shins looked dry and flaky - but the scales lessened as I continued taking Ceramides Skin Hydrator. Also weird, I check out my palms all the time now, and they're baby smooth!

As usual, with everything that I have tried with Neocell, I am impressed. I really did think that "man hands" was an inescapable part of working out hard. Doing the amount of back squats, pull ups, chin ups, t-bar rows, the list goes on, my hands were definitely starting to look rough.

Seriously, they're like butter now!

My husband was absent-mindedly petting my foot the other day, as we watched TV. I looked over at him, and he quietly said "What!? I can't help it, your skin is so soft, like everywhere!"

Now that is what I'm talking about!

If you wish to purchase Neocell Ceramides Skin Hydrator, you can do so at Walgreens, CVS, and Sam's Club to name a few for only $17.99.

Oh, I forgot to mention! Coming soon, to a tummy near you: Neocell Collagen Cookie Bars. They are due out soon, and scrumptious.

I was able to try both flavors, coconut chocolate crunch, and Peanut Butter crunch. I was surprised to find I like the coconut more. I'm not usually a coconut fan, and it has a definite coconut flavor, but the chocolate had me going in for bite after bite!

The peanut butter crunch is also good, my husband finished that one for me. Sharing is caring!

Boasting 13g of protein, only 2g sugar, and collagen infused - how do you go wrong with a chocolate bar that is a true snack and makes your hair, skin, and nails better! Too good.

If you've read my past reviews, you know Neocell always takes care of our readers with a great giveaway, and this time is no exception! THREE of our readers in the US will each win a 30 day supply of Neocell Ceramides Skin Hydrator to try out for themselves.  Read on to see how one of them can be you!

One winner in the US will receive a one month supply of Neocell Ceramides Skin Hydrator at the end of the giveaway.

To enter the giveaway, please leave a comment in this entry as instructed by the Giveaway Tools Entry Form below. This will open up additional optional entries to increase your odds of winning. (If you don't leave a comment, any additional entries will be void.)

This giveaway is open to the US RESIDENTS ONLY and will end just before midnight ET on 8/5. 

The winner will be notified by email 24 to 48 hours after the end of the giveaway by email. In order to claim the giveaway prize, the winner will need to respond within 24 hours of notification, or an alternate winner will be selected.

Good luck!