Saturday, September 29, 2012

How To Drink While Dieting


As someone who has often "battled the bulge" I am often looking for whatever the new and amazing thing is to make my own personal inner soldiers have an easier fight. What I never really thought about before was how EVERYTHING you put in your mouth can make a difference when it comes to losing or gaining weight. I was always great at being the girl that ate healthy, worked out, did everything right and then went out with my friends and drank a few beers on the weekends. Well this book right here has totally transformed my way of thinking about that after hours drink that was probably sabotaging all of my prior efforts.

This book takes you through everything from Chapter 4's Cocktails to Avoid to Mixology lessons to the wonderful recipes (101 to be exact) and choices of wine and beer that are best options .

Michael Cecchin
Some of my favorites (and let me say a big thank you for inviting me to this hop so I can drink without guilt haha):

  • Pomegranate Pizzazz - A Pomegranate/Gin drink;
  • Orange Crush - A blended Vodka/Orange drink;
  • Foggy Nights, Misty Mornings - A delish Tequila shot;
  • Sweet Peach Tea - A Peach Brandy/Tea drink; and
  • Girl Scout Cookie - a Thin Mint in a Martini Glass :)

I definitely suggest you pick up your own copy of this book and enjoy these delicious recipes! I know I sure did :)

Get your own copy of the book HERE Or Enter the Giveaway below!

This amazing giveaway is brought to you by author Michael Cecchin and Moms With Voices Media.
Winner will receive this fabulous 200 page interactive PDF version of the book with recipes 
PLUS 'The Truth About Alcohol' diet audio coaching!!

How To Drink While Dieting - Enjoy drinking skinny cocktails as part of ANY diet plan !! 
101 delicious and healthy cocktails inside!! 
As you leaf through the pages you will discover :
How to drink and stay healthy
What Cocktails to avoid
How to mix a cocktail like a pro
What glasses to use for each drink
Comprehensive calorie counts of popular beers and wines
And much, much more.........

Open Worldwide
Ending on 13th of October at 11.59pm est

Enter below and Good Luck !!

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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

First Wonky Wednesday Post! iPhone 5 Anyone???

So today we are starting a new post series called Wonky Wednesday! It's not wonky because of any reason other than the fact that it's completely off-topic and not related to books at all :) This gives you a chance to learn more about us and us a chance to write about things that may or may not be book related. :)

Well today's post is going to be about the iPhone 5 because I am obsessed with mine! At this point I have had my new phone for almost one week! So here is my breakdown about all of the new features!!!

FaceTime Via Wireless

This has got to be my favorite feature on my new phone! I use FaceTime and Skype A LOT! I have a very best friend who lives in South Carolina and I miss her SOOOOOO much! We talk all the time on FaceTime so I can see her silly face that I miss so much! It definitely helps pass the time between visits :) Definitely great to be able to use this feature anywhere I happen to be and not limit myself to only being able to talk to my friend when I am home! 

Siri 2.0

I was a previous iPhone 4 user and much to my dismay I did not get Siri like my lovely boyfriend did when he upgraded last year to the 4S :( the kicker was HE DOESN'T EVEN USE IT! Tell me that's not a kick in the behind! He has the feature, the ONE feature that really makes the 4S different from the 4 and he doesn't use it! Now I get it all to myself :) a Siri all of my own! I know I had heard in the past that the Siri feature was slow and not all it was cracked up to be but let me tell ya, I LOVE IT! I love being able to send messages and call people all hands free. About 2 months ago the wild and wonderful state of West Virginia went all hands free following the footsteps of many states before it. This Siri is really coming in handy. She's still not as quick as the commercials would like you to believe she is but it serves the purpose she was made for and I am told that she is very smart and the little bits of repeating yourself you have to do in the beginning will go away with time, hopefully!

Longer Screen

Ummm bigger screen? Better Screen?? Yes Please and Thank You Apple!! It isn't a huge difference but it makes a difference when you think about the fact that you get one more row of apps and folders, more space on texting and email and everything else you could think. It also allows me to enjoy my Netflix much more! That half inch or so really makes a difference to me at least. I don't really like the idea of other smartphones that have huge screens that are both long and wide because I have smaller hands so this way the phone is perfect for me. I get a bigger screen and the phone still fits in my hands :) What do you think about the new screen?

Ultra Fast Wireless

Between dual band wifi access and the new LTE connection this phone is fast, fast, fast! Too bad I only have access right now to 4G unless I am in Pittsburgh lol.

Email Changes

The only real thing I am going to touch on is this: ADDING PICTURES (MULTIPLE PICTURES) TO EMAIL AS YOU ARE COMPOSING!!!! Nuff Said!

A6 - Processor 

Seriously I am able to zoom through things on this phone! It is great and amazing and so much faster than my 4 was!

New & Improved Ear Buds

These I don't really see a huge change in. I don't really care for hard ear buds at all. I like my gummy ones so I have no real opinion on this change.

I-Sight Camera

I LOVE THIS FREAKING CAMERA! It is much better than any other camera on a phone that I have had and the better front-facing camera is pretty awesome too! It works out really awesome for the FaceTime app! I also had some fun playing with the Panorama feature at a local high school football game :) I don't see myself using it too much but it is a nifty feature to have if you are on vacation somewhere where you want to capture the view :)
Check it out!

Lightening Charger/Connector

While it sucks that I have to get new chargers for everything, I do love the tiny new charger that came with this phone. It is reversible so no matter what way I plug it into the phone it works. Good bye fumbling in the dark to plug my phone in. It also seems to charge the phone much quicker so that is a great thing in my book :)


I am not all that interested in the map app on the phone but I do like the "3D" thing is kinda cool. Thats about all I have to say about it at this point.

iOS 6.0

The great news about this new feature is it's not just for iPhone 5 users! Anyone can download and update their phone to have iOS 6.0! 

My favorite iOS Feature? The Do Not Disturb feature that allows me to "ignore" a call but send them an automatic text message back saying different pre-scripted notes such as I'm on my way, I will call you later, What's up?, and something more Custom that you chose and type in yourself!!! I seriously love this because sometimes people call at the most inopportune times!

My next favorite feature?? The App store. I really like the set up of it a lot. I like that there seems to be a bit more information in the app description and that there seems to be a few more previews on there. I like the way the free/paid/highest grossing apps lists are set up too

So tell me, did you get the new iPhone 5??? Did you upgrade your phone to iOS 6.0???? If you did or did not do either of these things let me know why!!!

Don't forget to go and do your daily entry requirements on our first Giveaway!!!! 

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Our First Read, Rate & Review Giveaway!!!

Ok so because we at Read, Rate & Review LOVE all of you out there we have decided to give away a $25 Gift Card to one lucky reader!!! All you have to do is fill out the form below and you could be the winner!!!

Thank you so much from all of us here at Read, Rate & Review!

Destiny, Ashley & Jamie

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Monday, September 24, 2012

Monday's Manifest! Jamie's Top 7 Desserts!

Jamie’s Top 7 Desserts:
7 – Nutter Butter Cookies
6 – Brownies
5 – Oreos
4 – Apple Crisp
3 – Cookie Dough Blizzard
2 – Chocolate/Vanilla Swirl Bundt Cake
1 – Mom’s No Bake Cookies

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Update!!! Tired Tuesday?!?!? Yes? No? Maybe?

So today is Tuesday and for me it is a tired Tuesday. I am sleepy, having some issues with my Sciatic nerve and I am stuck at work when it's pouring down the rain when I would much rather be at home curled up on a couch or bed reading a good book drinking some hot chocolate or coffee :)

Because I can't do that I am going to share a couple of funny book pictures I found online :) Yeppers this is me "phoning it in" :)

Find this mug here!

So there you go thats me phoning today's post in lol sometimes you just got to do the damn thang!

What are some of your most favorite comical photos that involve reading???

UPDATE: A great one from Becky over at If You Give A Girl A Cookie posted one that make me literally LOL here ya go and while you are out it go check out her blog it is witty and so much fun!

So there you have it! lol Thanks for the great laugh Becky!

Monday, September 17, 2012

The Monday Manifest: Ashley's Top 7 Favorite Authors

7. JR Ward
6. Jackie Collins
5. Catherine Coulter
4. Iris Johansen
3. J.D Robb/Nora Roberts
2. James Patterson
1. Janet Evanovich

So there you have it! Let me know in the comments who your favorite authors are!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

September Giveaways Link-Up!

I am going to start doing this monthly. This will be a great way to either get your Giveaway out there OR to check out a load of Giveaways all in one place :)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Another Giveaway!!! This time an iPad?!?!?!? Yay!

iPad3 Holiday Event is hosted by Mom Blog Society.

Prize: iPad3
The event dates: 10/4 - 11/1
Free Event ~ Sign-Up Here

Jamie's Earliest Memory of Reading

In elementary school we had to read books and give a book reports over them.  I was BIG into the Babysitter’s Club series at that age.  I read them all and couldn’t get enough.  When the movie came out, that was just the biggest and best thing ever – to be able to see all of the babysitters come to life before my eyes was really cool!

One of the reasons I remember the Babysitters Club series so well is because of those book reports.  In one of the books the group of friends had a séance.  What was so fun is that I recreated the séance in the classroom.  I asked my group of girlfriends to help me – we turned off the lights, had candles and all sat around in a circle and did the séance just like the girls in the book!  So fun – and I’m pretty sure I got an A on the book review!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Always the Wedding Planner, Never the Bride by Sandra D Bricker

The second book in the Emma Rae series, Always the Wedding Planner definitely measures up to it's predecessor.

Always the Wedding Planner focuses on Emma Rae's best friend, Sherilyn Caine. A wedding planner who moved back "home" to Chicago after college, Sherilyn finds herself back in Atlanta and planning a wedding of her very own. Sherilyn is also in need of something pretty important... a job. Of course Emma Rae tells her boyfriend, Jackson, all about her best friend. And how convenient that Jackson's sister is wanting to pass the wedding planning reins along. Sherilyn basically has the job before she even got the interview, but what comes next?

During a sort of orientation with Jackson's sister, something (or rather, someone) landed right in their laps. None other than Russel Walker, the famous actor... who was drunk as a skunk. Russel quickly finds himself in the folds of the Tanglewood Inn and it's make-shift family. Which now includes Sherilyn.

While planning her own wedding (along with so many others') Sherilyn begins to think she is cursed. Her wedding dress from Chicago never made it to Atlanta. Her second dress mysteriously disappeared from the Tanglewood... And she's repeatedly having an allergic reaction, when she's around Andy! What other explanation is there? Is there a reason Sherilyn could be cursed? Is she hiding a dirty little secret... Well... You'll have to read to find out!!

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. It's not my favorite in the series, but that's only because I felt like there was SO much going on. I wanted to get back to the nitty gritty. The book is still a page turner, though. The first appearance of Russel Walker is one to be remembered, and you meet JR and his future sister-in-law as well (they are also in Always the Designer). Sherilyn and Andy's is one that should be looked up to. And my favorite part?? The big news shared by Emma Rae and Jackson, AND by Fee and her always-making-her-swoon-new-love!!!

Don't forget about all the wonderful tidbits in between so  many chapters. From awesome wedding planning lists (I'm thinking about you Miss Ashley!!) to absolutely delicious sounding recipes, you won't be disappointed!!




Monday, September 10, 2012

Monday Manifest: Ashley's Top 7 Reasons to Read

7.  To prove someone wrong - this is the reason I started the Twilight series and got hooked after I realized I actually did like them!
6. Boredom - every once and a while I seriously just read because I don't have anything else to do.
5. Passes time on long trips - Especially on a plane and in an airport.
4. To learn something new - I love self help and how to books for when I am stuck on a problem either physical or emotional.
3.  I love losing myself in a story. I love the escape from real life and the day to day problems I am faced with. It really helps me relax.
2. Because it gives me something amazing to share with EVERYONE I know! I love suggesting new books to someone and having others suggest books to me :) 
1. Because I LOVE IT! There is nothing I love more than a great book. A great story. Just waiting for the story to unfold before my eyes! There is nothing better than a book!

So there are my top 7 reasons to read. I have so many more but I wanted to keep it to a short list lol :) Seriously if I was left to my own devices I would have had pages and pages of reasons! 

So tell me what are YOUR reasons for reading????

Thursday, September 6, 2012

KENDRA'S FIRST GUEST REVIEW!!! Shelter by Harlan Coben

In Shelter you follow Myron’s nephew Mickey through his struggle of dealing with his father’s death and his mother’s addiction. He is at a new school and he has a girlfriend, Ashley, who disappears. Mickey does not make friends easily at his new school. He’s quickly making enemies in his quest to find Ashely. Mickey finds friendship with two other “outcasts” Ema and Spoon who offer to help him. The journey takes him back to what happened to his father and he tries to piece together how his girlfriend’s disappearance and his father’s death are related. Mickey uncovers something much more than he intends too and quickly he finds he might be in over his head.

Shelter is a lot like Harlan Coben’s other books, you can’t put it down and each page has you wanting more. Mickey is a lot like Myron and the humor that sneaks out through the mystery keeps you entertained. Harlan Coben does not disappoint with this book and on the very last page you’re left wondering what will happen next.

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars.



Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Books on Tape? Kindle? Nook? Or the Real Thing? How do you read?

Today I have big news and a bit of a compare contrast on different ways to read your favorite books!

I have a tendency to be actively reading anywhere from one to 5 books at a time. How is that possible? Well, I read one on my Kindle, one on my phone (via the Kindle iPhone app), I listen to a book when I work out, I have an audio book in my car CD player and I still randomly pick up real paper books too. The great thing is I never have to worry about a book being in one format and not in another. I can pick up books whenever and where ever I may be and  I can utilize EVERY deal out there because let's be honest when you read as much as I do you NEED all the help you can get or you may end up in a cardboard box with nothing but books around you. Not that that would be a terrible way to live but still I enjoy my central air, comfy couch and amazing bed so free, half-priced, borrowed, or full price books are all just a part of everyday life for me.

So over the course of the last month I have had the opportunity to borrow my lovely friend's Nook to get an idea of the difference between a Nook and my Kindle. Let me tell you something....I missed my kindle. I missed it bad! I missed the ease of navigation and the familiarity that I have come to love. I have learned that people probably like whatever they started using because my best friend has a Nook and LOVES it! I don't know I just didn't like it at all. I did have a first gen Nook with the touch screen at the bottom (which may be why I didn't care for it) and I found it to be quite difficult to navigate. I was fine though once I got to the book I was reading and only had to change pages. That process was exactly what I had to go through with my Kindle so I wasn't that mad after I got to that point. It was getting there that seemed to take forever.

Tell me how do you like your nook???

Now on to my big news! I know this is nothing major to some of you but I found out that my local library offers online rentals of Audio books AND E books! I am in heaven right now! I don't have to leave the house at all to get a new book FOR FREE!!! I just dove into a new audio book that is new to me on audio but I have read it probably 3-5 times in real paper book format! I will tell you that I can't wait to do a review  on this three part series! It is seriously one of my favorite trilogies.

Here is my quick fly through of each book format and why I like them :)

1. Paper books: There is nothing better than turning a page or smelling an old book! I love the feel of a book the smell of a book and the ability to just hand it off to a friend when I am done to share the amazing story I just read. I do not like that they take up so much space though. I live in a small townhouse and I really just don't have enough room for the amount of books I have so most of them are in a box (Gasp! I know right?!?!) in my garage (Double Gasp!!!)

2. Audio Book: This may be my 2nd favorite format to have a book in. I began my love affair with audio books about 8 years ago when I had a pretty long commute and hated that I never seemed to have time to read anymore after my crazy commute, 10 hour days, sleeping and eating. I was randomly in a grocery store picking up a couple of items for the next days dinner/lunch and happened across the book section. There on the shelf was a new James Patterson book that I had been waiting for for about 7 months and all I kept thinking to myself is that I didn't have time to read it and that I would be more upset having the book and having it collect dust. As I was beginning to walk away I was nearly slapped in the face with this small box on the end with the name of the book on it and that is when I fell in love with audio books! I immediately bought that book AND 2 others that I had been longing for and went straight to my car books in hand and a smile on my face! The rest is history! Now I use them mostly when I am working or when I am working out. There is nothing more motivating than listening to a great book that you don't want to pause or stop to keep you pounding it out on that treadmill or bike! It's a great motivator for sure!

and finally last but certainly not least

3. E-books: I am OBSESSED! I have a love affair with my Kindle. I take her everywhere LITERALLY everywhere. She is always in my purse even when I switch to my "small" purse. I took her to two NFL football games (even though I left her in my purse the entire time) and I spend my lunch and the last moments I am awake every night with her. My boyfriend has told me many times that he feels like I neglect him for the Kindle and that he shouldn't have bought it for me in the first place to which I always answer with anger that he would talk badly about my lovely and wonderful device which allows me to carry 700+ books around with me wherever I go. About a month after he purchased the Kindle for me I sat it down on the couch recliner beside me. He came home and didn't look where he was sitting and bumped it into the crease knocking it into the gears of the recliner and promptly reclining it KILLING my Kindle. I seriously, no joke, cried. I was so upset about the death of my Kindle and mad at him for "not paying attention". This argument ended with us waking up and going straight to the store for him to purchase me yet another one that NEVER EVER sits on the couch where careless boyfriend's can knock it to its death! :)

So now I have a couple of questions for all of you!

How do you read? Do you like books that you can hold and smell? Books that you can read no matter where you are? Do you have an E-Reader? When and where do you read most of the time?

I can't wait to hear from all of you because every book worm knows that there is no such thing as too much reading! I can't wait to get tips from all of you on how you manage to fit reading into your busy schedules!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Always the Baker, Never the Bride by Sandra D Bricker

Always the Baker is the first book in the Emma Rae series. And you guessed it... It's about Emma Rae!

Emma is, obviously, a baker. A magnificent baker! A creative baker! A DIABETIC baker. The only baker who can't eat all of her creations!
In Always the Baker, you get a look into Emma Rae's background, including her diabetes diagnosis. You then fast-forward into present day, where she's working for a bakery, has an assistant AND won a prestigious award in Atlanta. What more could she ask for?

Insert Jackson Drake. A widow with a sweet tooth... And the CEO of the Tanglewood Inn, a work in progress. Drake's entire family is helping him bring his late wife's dream to life, by turning a boring hotel into the "it" place to get married. The thought of completely transforming a building into a one-stop-shop for all things wedding has Drake, and his sisters, in constant plan-mode. They've got a chef, but they still need a baker!

Emma and Jackson met at the bakery she worked at, in a rather disappointing encounter. Drake was a stranger, and a slightly rude one at that. Emma was a pushy baker who wouldn't give up on trying to sell him HAZELNUT items. Neither was sad to say goodbye. But when Drake tasted Emma's brownies, he knew he had to take some to his ever-helpful sisters.

The to-go brownies and the announcement of the Passionate Palate Award led to the sisters (and Drake's assistant) bringing Emma in for an interview. And who could say no to her plates of samples?

Emma becomes an integral part of the Tanglewood. How big is her part? You'll have to read to find out!!

I give this book 5 stars. YES, you read that right, FIVE STARS!!!
Always the Baker is a wonderful introduction to a series you're bound to love. The characters are ALL ones you'll fall for and each character seems to teach you something.
The wedding industry is a crazy one, you get an inside look at the way a major wedding destination is run, and all the hard word put into every single detail. The look into the life (and thoughts, and inner-arguments) of a widow is one that will open your eyes and pull at your heart strings. And the constant way-of-life for a diabetic will surely teach you a thing or two.

I guarantee you will find yourself completely engrossed in this story and you will feel like you are a part of the Tanglewood Family. And the extra bonus? There are tons of recipes and cake-baking hints thrown in between some of the chapters!! SCORE!!!

Get it for you Kindle HERE

Get it for your Nook HERE


Sunday, September 2, 2012


Hey Read, Rate & Reviewers!!!

About a month ago I did a review on this awesomely amazing book HERE! It was funny and easy to read! Check out the review and make sure to sign up below for the Giveaway!!! The giveaway begins on Sunday 2nd September at 12.01am EST !! ending on 22nd September at 11.59pm EST  so get your butts signed up quick!

Good Luck Read, Rate & Reviewers!!! 

Brought to you by author Shepherd Hoodwin and Moms With Voices Media,  
giving 3 lucky winners a chance to win !

Open Worldwide
(winners outside the US will win the ebook version)
Ending on 22nd September 2012 at 11.59pm EST

Enlightment for Nitwits
is the first metaphysical/self-help humor collection. It is full of hilarious one-liners and mind-bending pieces on a wide range of subjects.

Each of its forty-five short chapters is introduced with a funny blurb and photograph. This is a book you will keep handy to savor whenever you need an infusion of joy.

Now you can achieve enlightenment without doing absolutely any work on yourself whatsoever!  The Keys to Life are yours for the price of a cheap paperback! 

 Many seekers have trod the difficult path to enlightenment, giving up everything and going through hell—Not only is a trip to the Himalayas expensive, but you have to hike through yak poo to remote villages with no Wi-Fi. 

Now you can reach the highest states of consciousness possible to humanity without missing a single text message. This book is everything you need to ascend into the stratosphere of spiritual mastery!

Enter Below and Good Luck !!
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