Music Monday: Jazz Loves Disney


This is a sponsored post from Disney Music and One2One Network. All opinions are my own

1.  Jamie Cullum – “Everybody Wants To Be A Cat” – from The Aristocats

2.  Melody Gardot – “He’s A Tramp” – from Lady And The Tramp

3.  Stacey Kent – “Bibbidi Bobbodo Boo” (French version) – from Cinderella

4.  Gregory Porter – “When You Wish Upon A Star” – from Pinocchio

5.  China Moses – “Why Don’t You Do Right” – from Who Framed Roger Rabbit?

6.  Raphaël Gualazzi – “I Wanna Be Like You” – from The Jungle Book

7.  The Rob Mounsey Orchestra – “A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes” – from Cinderella

8.  Hugh Coltman – “You’ve Got A Friend In Me” – from Toy Story

9.  Anne Sila – “Let It Go” – from Frozen

10.  Melody Gardot & Raphaël Gualazzi – “The Bare Necessities” – from The Jungle Book

11.  Laika – “Once Upon A Dream” – from Sleeping Beauty

12.  Nikki Yanofsky -“Someday My Prince Will Come” – from Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs

13. The Hot Sardines – I Wanna Be Like You (French & English version) – from The Jungle Book (US release only)

What better way to get ready for a trip to Disney then listening to some of my favorite Disney songs reworked to be more jazzy? I was thrilled to get to review the new compilation to listen to while I was packing for my trip! Disney music has been in my family for generations – my grandmother moved closer to Disney and I can remember her always singing me Disney songs growing up when we went to visit her.  Once Upon a Dream was one of her favorites and I am happy that the song is included on this compilation.  Once Upon a Dream and I Wanna Be Like You are probably my top 2 songs from this compilation, although all of them are great.  Kicking the CD off with Everybody Wants To Be A Cat was perfect as when I think “jazz” and “Disney” it is the Aristocats that comes to mind.  Honorable mention go to two more princess songs that I absolutely love –  A Dream Is A Wish Your Heart Makes and Someday My Prince Will Come!


Jamie Cullum

“Disney is the first place many of us hear and really start to appreciate music as children. I’m really seeing that now with my own kids. What is wonderful about all the music is that it is challenging, melodically and lyrically exciting and playful. Having the chance to reinvent one of my favourites from the Aristocats – a proper jazz musical – was great fun. It’s such a brilliantly subversive film with killer music in it. I hope we’ve done it justice!”

Book Review: Home Game

homegameHome Game is written by Bret Boone who is a third generation major leaguer after his father and grandfather have both played in the bigs.  His brother is also in the majors.  This is the first family to have 3 generations and they were all all strs.   The book helped give a different perspective on the game and to see it through the eyes of the pros.  One fun thing to read was about how his brother was named on TV during the all star game when his Dad mentioned the name that the bench had decided on during the all star game! While I’m not really a fan of the teams that these guys played on, I always enjoy reading more about the game of baseball and this was a really great read.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.


About the Book
From the first third-generation baseball player in Major League Baseball history, a sometimes moving, always candid look at his family’s 70 years in the world of professional baseball.

A five-foot-ten firecracker who was spurned by scouts for his small size, supposed lack of power, and temper tantrums (one scout called him a “helmet-throwing terror”), Bret Boone didn’t care about family legacy as fought his way into the Major Leagues in 1992; he wanted to make his own way. He did just that, building a 14-year career that included three all-star appearances, four Gold Gloves, a bout with alcoholism, and the ignominy of being traded for the infamous “player to be named later.” Now that he’s coaching minor leaguers half his age, and his 15-year-old son has the potential to be a fourth-generation major leaguer, Bret is ready to reflect on and tell the story of baseball from the perspective of his family’s 70-year history in the sports.

Combining the brashness and candor of Ball Four with a dollop of Big Russ and Me sentiment, this book will trace the evolution of the game–on the field and behind the scenes–from Ray Boone’s era in the 1950s to Bob Boone’s in the 70s and 80s to Bret and Aaron’s era in the 90s and 2000s, when players made millions, dined on lobster in the clubhouse, injected themselves with PEDs, and had their choice of “Annies”–female clingers-on, or as today’s players call them, “road beef.” Along the way, the book will touch on pieces of Boone family lore, including Bret hitting zero dingers in a home run derby and Aaron’s home run (if you don’t know what this is referring to, then consult the nearest Red Sox fan). Blending nostalgia, behind-the-scenes profanity, close analysis of the game that only players can offer, and insight into baseball’s ongoing evolution as a sport and a business, Bret Boone will offer a one-of-a-kind look at America’s favorite pastime from a family who has seen it all.

Book Review: Stripped Bare


Since this book was a “must read” I figured I… must read it.  I wouldn’t consider it a must read by any stretch, but it was a decent book. It did take me a while to get through it and I’m not sure if that was because of how it’s written or just because I’ve been so busy lately.

The book is about a woman named Kate.  She is married to the Sheriff.  She is currently taking care of her teenage niece Carly whose mother and father have both passed away.  The book begins with Kate getting a call from another local woman named Roxy that Eldon (Carly’s granddad) and Ted (Kate’s husband) have been shot.  Eldon is killed and Ted is in the hospital.  She finds out that Ted got to the scene of the crime quickly because he’s been having an affair with Roxy.  It seems like everyone in town knew what was going on but Kate.  Carly is also nowhere to be found.

When the police come in to investigate, Ted ends up confessing that he killed Eldon.  Kate knows better and knows that he is protecting someone and she vows to find out herself who it is.  When mysterious accidents keep happening to her, she knows she is on the right track but she isn’t sure if she will solve it before something terrible happens to her.

There are a lot of characters in town that we meet throughout the story since Kate and Roxy (!) end up teaming up to try and solve the crime and see whodunit.

I had no idea who the suspect was until all was revealed. If you’re into murder mysteries you’ll have to check this one out and see if you can fair any better than I did.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

Stripped Bare by Shannon Baker is “A must read” (Alex Kava, New York Times bestselling author) that stars a female Longmire in the atmospheric Nebraska Sandhills.

Kate Fox is living the dream. She’s married to Grand County Sheriff Ted Conner, the heir to her beloved Nebraska Sandhills cattle ranch, where they live with Kate’s orphaned teenage niece, Carly. With the support of the well-connected Fox Clan, which includes Kate’s eight boisterous and interfering siblings, Ted’s reelection as Grand County Sheriff is virtually assured. That leaves Kate to the solitude and satisfaction of Frog Creek, her own slice of heaven.

One night Kate answers a shattering phone call from Roxy at the Bar J. Carly’s granddad Eldon, owner of the ranch, is dead and Ted has been shot and may never walk again. Kate vows to find the killer. She soon discovers Ted responded so quickly to the scene because he was already at the Bar J . . . in Roxy’s bed. And to add to her woes, Carly has gone missing.

Kate finds out that Eldon was considering selling his ranch to an obscenely rich environmentalist. Some in town hate the idea of an outsider buying up land, others are desperate to sell . . . and some might kill to get their way. As she becomes the victim of several “accidents,” Kate knows she must find the killer before it’s too late. . . .

Love with Food September



We never stop learning, no matter how old we are – whether it’s learning a new language, learning more about another culture, or just learning a new skill. But let’s face it, learning can be a hungry business! This month’s box is packed full of snacks that are perfect for enjoying while broadening your horizons. So go ahead – share your knowledge and share your snacks!

Organic Fruit Candies by GoOrganic
So good it’s hard to imagine they’re completely organic. Get ready to believe in miracles.

These were really good hard candies!

Sandwich Crackers by Lance
These are not your mama’s crackers. Real ingredients, real energy, and really delish.

Not a fan of cheese crackers, I prefer peanut butter, but these weren’t terrible.

Coco & Milk Classic Wafers by Loacker
A classic sweet combination wrapped in lighter-than-air wafers. So basically, heaven.

These were pretty good.

Bunches of Crunches Dark Chocolate Sea Salt with Chia by Bakery on Main
Granola meets dessert in these poppable, crunchable, irresitible snack.

Really liked this granola. A great mid day pick me up snack.

Caramel Apple Crisp Premium Puffed Corn by Cosmos Creations
Don’t think puffed corn could be so reminiscent of a classic comfort food dessert? Wrong.

These were probably the best in the box.

Organic Gummy Cherries by Black Forest Organic
The classic taste of cherries, made 1000% better as a gummy. Whoever said candy is just for kids never tried these.

These were really good but the suggested servings in the bag was 2.5.  That… didn’t happen.

Strawberry Raspberry & Walnut Bites by Orchard Bar
What could be easier than a snack bar? A snack bar that’s bite-sized! Not to mention gluten-free, 60% organic and non-GMO with NO artificial anything.

This was very very heavy on the raspberry so a bit on the sour side and I have little to no tolerance for that, but I enjoyed it.

*Also included was beef jerky which I can’t seem to find on the Love With Food site for details and I ate it first thing. It was a little bland compared to the slim jims I am used to, but wasn’t a bad snack.

Book Review: How To Catch a (Falling) Star

fallingstarHow to Catch a (Falling) Star is the sequel to How to Catch a (Rock) Star which I read and reviewed last summer. That book was about Lillie and Jed, who are featured characters in this book as well, but his book followed Jed’s band mate Johnny and TV actress Darcy Swanson.    Both are on a TV show in the UK, along with another famous actor.  Johnny ends up catching Darcy and the actor after the show – and things seem to be going downhill from there.  Johnny is in jail and charged with assault even though he didn’t do anything, and Darcy wants to keep what happened a secret so it’s possible that Johnny will get in trouble for something he didn’t even do.

About half of the book is before the two even realize that they are into each other – or at least before they decide to act on it.  Like the other book, the love scenes are minimal even though it is considered a “rock star romance”, but like the prequel story, I didn’t really have a problem with that since there was so much action and drama going on with the rest of the story and what was going on.

This book had a lot of female empowerment in it and women standing up for themselves and taking a stand, which I really liked and it is a really great message.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

The much anticipated sequel to the new adult bestseller “How to Catch a (Rock) Star”

Johnny Moretti, bassist of American rock band The Dead Hour, is hot, single and in demand with women, but he’s becoming disillusioned with the rock star lifestyle. Not that he wants to settle down like his band mate, Jed. Hell, no. He just wants something more out of life than meaningless hook-ups.

While filming for a popular UK chat show, he meets American TV actress Darcy Swanson for the second time. As with the first time they met, there’s no love lost between them so when their lives are thrown together unexpectedly when a traumatic incident involving movie superstar Jack Ford occurs, neither knows quite how to handle it.

With Johnny facing prison and Darcy’s hard-earned career in serious jeopardy, they both need to confront their pasts and face up to the truth, but are they be brave enough to do it?

A web of Hollywood cover-ups begins to surface, but will Johnny and Darcy be the first spark to light the fire and run the risk of getting seriously burnt or will they stay silent and suffer the consequences?

Music Monday: Tyrone Wells Covers One


You Make My Dreams Come True
She Drives Me Crazy
Lean On
Can’t Get You out of My Head

Covers One is the first in a 2 part EP release from Tyrone Wells released earlier this month. The EP includes covers of Imagine Dragons Radioactive, Hall & Oates You Make My Dreams Come True, Fine Young Cannibals She Drives Me Crazy, Major Lazer Lean On, and Kylie Mingue’s Can’t Get You Out Of My Head like you’ve never heard them before! I love Tyrone’s soothing voice and I could probably use a couple of these songs as lullabies to just sooth me to sleep. (And I don’t mean that as a dis at all!)  Some of these songs may be almost unrecognizable, until you hit the chorus at least, but why be boring and do a complete copy of the original? Tyrone melds these songs to his style and if you love him you will love these.  I can’t wait for Covers Two to be released!

Book Review: Post This Book

postPost This Book is a book that is meant to spark your creativity. There are various prompts throughout the book that can be posted on social media.  Prompts like – me in 3 words, create and customize a personal mug, rehome a penguin, photograph a souvenir.  This book is probably best as an actual book than a non ebook, but there are definitely a lot of fun ideas in here if you are bored and want to spice up the content on your social media accounts.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book
Explore your inner artist with creative prompts to doodle, color, collage—then #PostThisBook on social media!

Post This Book is the first interactive journal that empowers you to rediscover creativity and fun—and post the results to your social network!

Respond to the journal’s innovative prompts to create a fabulous online feed. Share coloring pages, videos, patterning, doodling, and inspirations on and off the page. Express yourself without need for perfection, and share your images on social media with #PostThisBook to become part of an imaginative online community and view creations from around the world.

Book Review: A Life In Parts


I first was “introduced” to Bryan Cranston as Hal on Malcolm in the Middle.  Of course,this was later in his career so any talk of Malcolm doesn’t come until about 50% through this book.  I was instantly drawn into this book, the writing style is great and really makes you feel like you are there with Bryan as he relives his early life – starting out as an actor, having that no longer seem to be his passion after his father left and then rediscovering it again later on.  I loved reading about all the sneaky things he did as a young adult – especially when he was selling sun screen as a lifeguard at the pool.

Just a note – I have not seen Breaking Bad in its entirety and I’m not sure I ever will – but if you are someone who has not yet seen the show and may eventually want to watch it, you may want to get that out of the way before reading this book because it does contain some spoilers pretty much right from the beginning of the book.

Each chapter name is the “part” that Bryan played in that story – whether it be as an actor or as a family member – son, nephew, etc.  A very interesting read about a very versatile actor.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review. I was not otherwise compensated.


About the Book

A poignant, intimate, funny, inspiring memoir—both a coming-of-age story and a meditation on creativity, devotion, and craft—from Bryan Cranston, beloved and acclaimed star of one of history’s most successful TV shows, Breaking Bad.

Bryan Cranston landed his first role at seven, when his father, a struggling actor and director, cast him in a United Way commercial. Soon, Bryan was haunting the local movie theater, memorizing and reenacting favorite scenes with his older brother. Acting was clearly the boy’s destiny—until one day his father disappeared. Suddenly, destiny took a back seat to survival.

Seeking something more stable, perhaps subconsciously trying to distance himself from his absent father, Cranston decided on a career in law enforcement. But then, a young man on a classic cross-country motorcycle trip, Cranston one day found himself stranded at a rest area in the Blue Ridge Mountains. To pass the time he read a tattered copy of Hedda Gabler, and in a flash he found himself face-to-face once again with his original calling. Suddenly he thought: This was what he wanted to do, what he would do, with the rest of his life. Act.

In his riveting memoir, A Life in Parts, Cranston traces his zigzag journey from his chaotic childhood to his dramatic epiphany, and beyond, to mega-stardom and a cult-like following, by vividly revisiting the many parts he’s played, on camera (astronaut, dentist, detective, candy bar spokesperson, President of the United States, etc.) and off (paperboy, farmhand, security guard, dating consultant, murder suspect, dock loader, son, brother, lover, husband, father). With great humor, and much humility, Cranston chronicles his unlikely rise from a soap opera regular, trying to learn the ropes and the politics of show business on the fly, to a recurring spot as Tim Whatley on Seinfeld, finding himself an indelible part of popular culture. He recalls his run as the well-meaning goofball, Hal, on Malcolm in the Middle, proving to writers and fans that he was willing to do anything, anything, for a laugh, and he gives a bracing account of his challenging run on Broadway as President Lyndon Johnson, pushing himself to the limit as he prepared, physically and mentally, for a tour de force that would win him a Tony, to go along with his four Emmys.

Of course, Cranston dives deep into the grittiest, most fascinating details of his greatest role, explaining how he searched inward for the personal darkness that would help him create one of the most riveting performances ever captured on screen: Walter White, chemistry teacher turned drug kingpin.

Discussing his failures as few men do, describing his work as few actors can, Cranston has much to say about innate talent, its benefits, challenges, and proper maintenance, but ultimately A Life in Parts is about the necessity and transformative power of hard work.

Book Review: Crafting with Feminism

Crafting with Feminism contains 25 Girl-Powered Projects to Smash the Patriarchy. I’m not sure I’ll actually ever make any of these projects, but I was interested in seeing what all was included in the projects. Some of them included badges of honors, hero puppets of great feminist heroes and even tampon buddies. (Cmon, you had to know something including tampons was going to end up in this book!) A lot of the projects really made me laugh and they would be a lot of fun to make with your other feminist buddies on a boring weekend.

I received a free e-copy of this book in order to write this review, I was not otherwise compensated.

About the Book

This is what a feminist crafter looks like! Wear your ideology on your sleeve by creating feminist merit badges (like “started an all-girl band” or “rocked roller derby”). Prove that the political is personal with DIY power panties (“No means no”). Craft great feminist hero finger puppets (Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Frida Kahlo) or googly-eyed tampon buddies. Fun sidebars provide background on (s)heroes of the feminist movement.

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