Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Must See: Introducing Tethercell. A Clever Way to Control Your Battery Operated Device

This has to be the smartest thing to happen to battery operated devices. I've not been compensated or promised compensation for sharing this and there are no affiliate links in this post, but I think this is so awesome I just had to share. Tethercell takes battery operated devices and gives you a level of control that is amazing to me. What really got my attention is the ability to control children's video game times; this device gives you back that authority. There have been nights where i've happened upon my son attempting to hide underneath the covers or pretend to be sleeping when in reality he's sneaking in game or show time via his electronic devices. Oh how i'd love for him to wonder what's going on when I secretly shut things down. Following is a video with more on how Tethercell works. It is a start-up item that you can contribute to and get your own by making a contribution. Otherwise you'll have to wait for launch time, which i'm not sure when that will be. You can also read more about it here.

Tethercell: The Everyday Battery, Re-imagined from Tetherboard on Vimeo.

Tech Tip

Hey and it's a Tuesday! Tech Tip Tuesday does sound good (hint hint honey). Well here's that tech tip I promised courtesy of my techie hubby:

Hi All,

This is my first time posting to and I’m very excited to be a contributor to this site. So for the first Tech Corner discussion I will be showing you how to install more memory to your computer. Upgrading memory is one of the quickest, most efficient and most cost-effective ways to boost performance.

First you will want to see what type of memory (aka Random Access Memory or RAM) is compatible with your computer. You can do this a number of ways. The best way is to look in your user’s manual or on the website to view the specifications, you will need it because it will show where the memory is located if it is a laptop and how much memory your computer can handle. In the specs it will say something like Memory: 2GB DIMM DDR2 1600.  Sometimes the manufacturer will have options for you to buy their own RAM, but if that is not your cup of tea, (i.e. expensive) you can take that info and go to sites like, or a general google search for more options. Once you have the new memory in hand you can now do some fun stuff.

If you have a desktop, there are up to three screws usually on the left side that will need to be unscrewed. After that just pull the left side panel back and the panel should come off. Your computer should look like this (The white arrow is pointing to the memory)

For the safety of your computer and new memory make sure you ground yourself because of ESD (electrostatic discharge). ESD can harm your computer, but this is a simple fix…just touch metal…this discharges you and now your in business. Where the RAM is…there are some tabs on each side just push the tabs back and the RAM will pop out, take out the old RAM and put the new RAM in the slot making sure the notch at the bottom of the RAM lines up with the slot on the computer (RAM can only be installed a certain way). Now once new RAM is in the slot, push down so that the tabs on the side of the RAM will lock into place. Guess what…your done!!!!! Just put the panel back and put the screws back. If this was done correctly your computer will start normally, if not just go back and make sure the RAM is pushed down enough. Laptops are a little different, just refer to your manual for more instructions. Now you can charge $50 in labor cost to your friends. Enjoy more speed!!!

Reminder and a Recipe Loaded Baked Potato Soup

Just a quick reminder about tomorrow's upcoming chat:

And on to that recipe:

Lightened-Up Loaded Baked Potato Soup
Recipe by: Tara Gidus, Registered Dietitian

Serves 10 (1 cup portions)
Total time: 35 minutes
Cooking time: 25 minutes 

6 medium white potatoes (skin-on) or 4 medium Russet potatoes (peeled), diced
1 head broccoli, chopped into bite-sized pieces
2 teaspoons olive oil, divided
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped garlic, divided
1 leek, washed and sliced thinly 
1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper
8 ounces (or 2 ½ cups) frozen cauliflower
2 cups low-sodium vegetable broth
2 cups 2% milk
5 ounces reduced-fat sharp cheddar cheese, for topping
5 slices center-cut bacon, microwaved and crumbled for topping
Chives, chopped for topping

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.

Fill large pot with potatoes and salted water. Bring to a boil over high heat and cook until potatoes are fork tender, about 15 minutes. When potatoes have finished cooking, drain water and set potatoes aside in bowl or colander.  

While potatoes are cooking, line rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. To prepare broccoli, remove bottom part of stem, and slice into bite-sized florets leaving an inch of the stem intact. Place broccoli on prepared baking sheet, lightly drizzle with 1 teaspoon olive oil and sprinkle with pinch of salt and ½ teaspoon garlic. Roast in oven for 20 minutes until crispy.

Heat 1 teaspoon olive oil over medium heat. Sauté leeks, crushed red pepper, and garlic until leeks soften, about 1-2 minutes. Add cauliflower and vegetable stock, increase heat to medium-high and cook until cauliflower is soft. Remove pot from heat, and add potatoes, milk, and ½ teaspoon salt.

Using an immersion blender, (or transfer soup to regular blender), puree soup until smooth and creamy.

To serve, ladle one cup of soup into a bowl and top with cheese, bacon, chives, and roasted broccoli. Enjoy! Makes 10 servings. 

Note: Boil or microwave broccoli for the topping if you don’t want to fire up your oven for roasted broccoli.

Nutritional analysis per 1 cup serving: 159 calories, 4g total fat, 2g saturated fat, 10mg cholesterol, 530mg sodium, 22g carbohydrate, 2g dietary fiber, 2g sugar, 9g protein, 14% calcium, 39% vitamin C, 513mg potassium

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Giveaway: Join Me for a Live Potato Chat

There are not many foods that can boast the versatility of potatoes. From everyday to gourmet, breakfast to dinner, fast food to fine dining and for all ages there's something in it for everyone. You probably knew all this and have tried potatoes in more ways than you can count. They're tasty, satisfying and can really cheer a belly, but did you know they're good for you? They're packed with vitamins, minerals and fiber and are fat free. Matter of fact, if you've made a resolution to perhaps eat healthier and want to cut back on foods that aren't so good for you, you can still keep the potatoes around.

Want to learn more about how you can incorporate potatoes into your new-found (or even ongoing) commitment to eat right? Well be sure to join the US Potato Board live chat on Facebook this upcoming Wednesday, January 16th at 5 p.m. PST/ 8 p.m. EST. You'll have the opportunity to ask author and registered dietitian, Tara Gidus, questions to help you stay on track with your goals as well as learn healthy cooking tips for your family and more.

RSVP for this event is open now and you can sign up to attend by clicking through to the event page here and be sure to join in on the chat on the Potatoes, Taters and Spuds Facebook page this Wednesday.

You can also win a prize pack here which includes:

  • $20 Visa Giftcard
  • Potato Masher
  • Shopping List Notepad
  • Cell Phone Cleaning Cloth
  • Potato Recipe Cards

A prize pack was provided to me in exchange for my participation and the same is being provided to the winner selected for this giveaway.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

I'm Baaaack :D

How is your New Year's going so far? Mine has already had it's ups and downs and i'm expecting and hoping for things to get better. Hopefully all of you are off to a great start that will only get better.

I took an extended break with Christmas and the New Year rolling around and i'm ready to get back. I've not forgotten you all, matter of fact, you're the biggest part of the reason that I feel happy to be returning. I never intended for three weeks to pass. I know i'm behind on selecting winners, so if you entered any of the contests that I had running, keep your eyes on your emails, because I intend to get around to getting some selected very shortly.

With all the happenings, i'm feeling a need to put up at least a couple of posts which will go into details of things that are on my heart. I know that they are controversial topics, but i'd like to express my feelings as well as get feedback on what you all are thinking on these. I'm debating whether or not I should make these thoughts a regular part of my blogging experience here.

I'd also like to get my hubby more involved. I'm planning on getting his tech post up soon, and hopefully someone will find his tips useful and we'll see where things go with that too. He's working and all, and i'm sure he may not get around to creating posts as often as we'd like, but if you can find posts to make technology around your house run a bit smoother, why not?

Then there's our now 16 month old and our baby due this March for which i'd like to share updates and tips AND some things that have been going on concerning myself, my family within my house, as well as extended family that have forced me into research and I want to be able to share some of my findings here and there in hopes of helping someone faced with these same issues.

And of course sticking with the reviews and giveaways when the opportunities arise! Something I look forward to always and hopefully you do to. There are just so many things going on in my life and i'm looking forward to sharing with you all. Thanks so much for sticking around!