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May 2008

Celebrating "National Old Friends, New Friends" Week

"National Old Friends, New Friends Week" is hosted from May 18th-25th and it couldn't have come at a better time for me. As many of you know, my mom was diagnosed with lung cancer last year. I've spent the last month with her and am currently back home to celebrate my daughter's high school graduation. Next week, I will return to continue caring for mom. It's been a bittersweet time, but I feel very blessed to have the opportunity to spend this time with my life mentor.

Mom has always been an amazing cook. Everything I know about cooking, I owe to her. In fact, a few weeks ago, mom had a craving for ham salad. I'd never made ham salad before and actually turned my nose up at it, but I gotta tell you -- this stuff is amazing! I'll share the recipe with you in my next post. Today, I need to express the importance of friendship.

My good friend and business associate, Viveca Stone-Berry recently founded DogCaptions.com with her brother and humorist-photographer, Richard Stone. DogCaptions.com is offering the "Barker's Dozen" Friendship Card Pack, a collection of 13 all-occasion cards with adorable photos of dogs (and one cat!). Each card has a funny or uplifting caption printed on the front and are blank inside, leaving plenty of room to express your love and gratitude.

I've experienced an outpouring of love from old and new friends during mom's illness. My friend, Patty, treated me to lunch one day and provided me with transportation to and from the airport. My friend, Evelyn, called me several times and sent me humorous and inspirational emails. Viveca, of DogCaptions.com sent me a wonderful Kathryn Ponder book, a "Barker's Dozen" Friendship pack, a fabulous tote that folds up so you can carry it in your purse, and adorable bookmarks (called Bark Marks -- too cute!).

Mom's neighbors frequently stopped by to visit, bring food, take down the trash, scoop up dog poop and show their love. Her friends offered so much love and support to both of us. Their love and friendship made all the difference in the world. They offered a shoulder to cry on, a hug, a smile, a prayer.

Think about all the people who are important in your life. Take advantage of "National Old Friends, New Friends" week to reconnect with your friends and family and remind them how important they are to you. Go buy a "Barker's Dozen" Friendship Pack today and send cards to everyone who is important to you. Not only will you brighten their day, you'll be doing something to save a pet's life. How??

When you purchase the Barker's Dozen Friendship Pack this week, DogCaptions.com is donating up to 50% of the profits to three animal shelters. These organizations help spread the word about spaying/neutering services, adoption services, and provide shelter and medical services for these animals.

DogCaptions.com will send you a special gift when you purchase the Barker's Dozen cards this week. They have lined up some amazing sponsors who are giving you some pretty great gifts for FREE.

Share your love. Brighten your friends day. Help an animal. Go to DogCaptions.com today and pick up a pack or two of these adorable cards. Doing so will make the world a better place ;-)


Wine Bible Offers An Amazing Selection of Wines Online

WineBible.com is one of the most informative sites on wines I have ever found. What originally drew my attention to their website is the fact that they sell Virgin Wines. I have always admired Sir Richard Branson. Not only is he the founder of Virgin Records and Virgin Airlines, he also created Virgin Mobile. I've had cell phone service with Virgin Mobile for years and absolutely love their service and affordable plans. But, I digress.

I located Virgin Wines at WineBible.com and learned some fascinating information about wine. At the Wine Bible website, you can discover the history of wine, wine grape varieties, wine producing countries and anything else you could ever want to know about wines.

Unfortunately, WineBible.com wines are currently available to residents of the United Kingdom. However, their website is a wealth of knowledge for anyone interested in learning more about specific types of wine, how to pair them with food and their origins.

The good news is, by using WineBible.com, I discovered a Pinot Noir wine I was interested in and when I "Googled" it, I found a supplier in the U.S. I also discovered, "The World Atlas of Wine" by by Hugh Johnson and Jancis Robinson which was promoted on WineBible.com and available through Amazon.com. With a click of a button, I was able to purchase this book through Amazon's U.S. division.

While I wish I could take advantage of the many delectable wines and resources offered at WineBible.com, I found their online Wine Guide to be extremely informative and helpful. Additionally, I know there are many visitors to The Cheap Gourmet Blog who reside in the U.K. who can take advantage of the deep discounts and wine resources located at this wonderful wine site.

Even if you don't live in the U.K., take a moment to stop by WineBible.com. You'll find a wealth of knowledge on French Wine, Spanish Wine, Italian Wine, Virgin Wines, how to buy wine online and much more. It's one of the best wine websites I've ever found and I hope you will enjoy it too!


Dessert University: Cook Like a Chef, Even If You Can't Boil Water

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By now you're probably wondering how much this culinary training course will cost you, right? Believe it or not, Dessert University is currently available for only $34.95. Yes, you read that right -- you can have access to mouth-watering, tantalizing-tastebud sensations for a mere $34.95. There are no limits and no recurring fees. Once you pay the $34.95, you will have instant access to the entire Dessert University program.

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