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February 28, 2008

Senseo Coffee Maker

When the alarm goes off at 3:30 am, there are few rational reasons for me to crawl out from under the comforters and start my day. But, since I'm working full time and making do with no childcare, I've switched my California living for East Coast hours, and I'm on the computer, typing away by 4 am.

You want to know what makes these wee hours bearable?


You see that big steamy, frothy cup of coffee coming out of that spigot? The photo doesn't do it justice.

That, right there, is a good cup of coffee.

I've been a big fan of the Senseo system since I purchased my first one in September 2004. I even played around with the coffee/water ratio. And despite my initial doubts that something called a "pod" could yield anything other than an alien life-form, what I found then, and is still true now:

Senseo Coffee Pods make a damn good cup of coffee. In like, a minute.

A month or so ago, I was offered the chance to review the newest model of the Senseo. Yeah, I didn't even hesitate for a minute. My trusty "Ole Blue" was still blowing coffee out her spout on demand, but my neglect of the de-scaling process has made her a little, um, crusty.

When the shiny new model arrived - we'll call her Midnight - I ran it through the rinse cycle and fired that baby up. Within a minute, I was wrapping my lips around the rim of my mug and sporting a foam mustache.

You wanna piece of this action? I have five special coupons worth $20 off a Senseo coffee maker. First five commenters - I'll send the coupon on down to you. You want a chance to receive your very own Senseo? Check it out here!

February 22, 2008

Relish! - A service totally worth the exclamation point.

When the hot mamas over at Parent Bloggers Network asked for reviewers for Relish! - my hand shot in the air so fast you would have thought my armpits were on fire.

Or, wait. Maybe if your armpits were on fire, you should try to smother them by putting your arm down.

Whatevs. Let's get back to the review at hand.

So! Relish! is a new website that offers the chance to have Good Food. Everyday. How is this possible? Are they magic? Do they come to your house and make it happen?

Well, no. But that would be cool.

What Relish! offers is this:

Quick and Easy Dinners. Every Night.

We dish out everything you need to prepare distinct, creative dinners, every night, with ease. Relish! serves up affordable meal planning and we supply all of the essentials from easy-to-follow grocery shopping lists to customized menu selections.

Dude. You have no idea how awesome this is until you try it. I've been a long time fan of anything that makes dinner planning easy. I've read all sorts of books, magazine articles, subscribed to mailing lists and made wild attempts at planning my own menus.

Where they have all failed me have been in the grocery store. I hate constructing a grocery list with a fiery passion. If I have to produce a grocery list, even if it is partially done for me, I want to blow things up. Enter Relish! It took me a grand total of five minutes to select from their weekly menu of delicious entrees, click click click and I was sitting there looking at a beautifully organized grocery list for the week's dinners.

*insert me doing the cabbage patch in my desk chair*

Then! I cut and pasted the list into my local online grocery's shopping list function - and click click click did my weekly shopping.

I really like the fact that the recipes are whole, natural foods, quick to prepare and clearly marked so that you can quickly and easily choose the recipes most likely to be a hit with your family. The ability to select the number of eaters in your family, plus the really great variety of options makes Relish! a super-cool resource for those of us who like to cook, but hate to plan.

To check out what other Parent Bloggers had to say, see the roundup here.

To get your own account, check out the Relish! site.

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