Saturday, January 3, 2009

Easy Holiday Dessert -Only 3 Ingredients


2 pkgs (3 oz each) soft ladyfingers
3/4 cup coffee-flavored liqueur (such as Kahlua) or coffee syrup + 3/4 cup water
1 tub (1 lb 8.3 oz) ready-to-eat cheesecake filling (Kraft Philadelphia)
1. Separate and arrange 1 package of the ladyfingers on the bottom of an 8-in. square baking dish, overlapping slightly.
2. Mix liqueur and water in small bowl; brush ladyfingers with half the mixture. Stir cheesecake filling in tub until spreadable. Spoon half over ladyfingers, spreading evenly. Repeat layers.
3. Garnish top with sifted unsweetened cocoa powder, if desired. Cover and refrigerate 2 hours.
Different Takes
Sprinkle grated bittersweet chocolate between ladyfinger and filling layers.
Substitute hazelnut-flavored liqueur for the coffee-flavored liqueur.
Make a tiramisu cake by layering in an 8-in. springform pan.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Hart & Huntington Tattoos
Looking for a tattoo but don’t know what to look for?

Top Ten For A Second Home

The top 10 towns for second-home investments identified popular second-home destinations that appreciated at least 10% a year in value between 1998 and 2002 and which may have further to go.

The results are based on their own listings for real estate in these communities. Listings arent sales, though, and doesnt reflect the whole market. In fact, real estate professionals in some of these towns (Asheville, N.C., for example) say sales were never that hot, while those in others (Park City, Utah, and Sunriver, Ore.) say appreciation has slowed in recent years.

Where possible, Ive included price appreciation figures compiled by the federal Office of Federal Housing Enterprise Oversight, which oversees housing finance companies Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac and which compiles housing sales data for larger metropolitan areas.

With all those caveats aside, here are the Top 10 second-home investment markets:
Asheville, N.C. This mountain town boasts the Biltmore Estate and a thriving arts and crafts community. Home prices are up 35% in the past five years, compared with the national median growth of 27.8%.

Park City, Utah. The Olympics-related frenzy has cooled, but Park City is still a preferred destination for skiers and other winter sports fanatics. Prices this year are up between 5% and 7%, according to real estate broker Mike Sloan, statistician for the areas Board of Realtors.

Ashland, Ore. Lovely weather, lovelier scenery and cultural cachet combine in Ashland. Located about halfway between Portland and San Francisco, the town is also home to Southern Oregon University and the highly regarded Oregon Shakespeare Festival. Ashlands home values have exploded in recent years. Home prices in the region that includes Ashland and nearby Medford have risen at least 40% since 1998, according to federal figures, while a local appraiser puts Ashlands average home price growth closer to 70% in that period.

Port Townsend, Wash. This picture-perfect Victorian seaport lay nearly untouched for most of its long history until being discovered by Seattle yuppies in the 1990s. Its still quaint, but relatively mild weather and proximity to Olympic Peninsula attractions have increased its appeal for retirees and urban refugees.

Beaufort, S.C. You know Beaufort, even if youve never been there. Youve seen it in movies like The Big Chill and Forrest Gump, and youve read about it in the pages of The Prince of Tides and The Great Santini by one-time Beaufort resident Pat Conroy. Fishing, shrimping and a National Historic Landmark District are features of The Queen of the Carolina Sea Islands.

South Lake Tahoe, Calif. Though it shared Americas largest alpine lake with the more glamorous Lake Tahoe, Nev., this community was long the dowdy little sister. No more. Two new Marriotts have replaced a strip of decaying old motels along the main drag, and theres talk of a convention center. Median home prices are up 21% from last year, said Madeleine Gutierrez, vice president of the South Lake Tahoe Association of Realtors.

Daytona Beach, Fla. Nineteenth-century industrial barons popularized Daytona, which is probably best known for the international raceway built in 1959 and the Daytona 500 auto race. Eight million visitors pour through annually. Home prices are up 44% in the past five years and nearly 9% in the last year alone.

Sunriver, Ore. This central Oregon resort area is near Bend and the Mt. Bachelor ski resort, about four hours from Portland and two hours east of Eugene. Whitewater rafting, hiking and skiing are favorite pastimes. Prices on some properties are about double what they were eight years ago, realtors say, but appreciation has slowed down in recent years along with the economy.

Myrtle Beach, S.C. The beaches along The Grand Strand -- and the areas 120 golf courses -- draw 14 million visitors annually. Despite the crush, Myrtle Beach consistently winds up in various listings of the nations best beaches and best retirement towns, with home prices rising at an 8% annual clip.

Charlevoix, Mich. This little town lies between the shores of Lake Michigan and Lake Charlevoix in northern Michigan. The population of the town and surrounding area is 8,500 full-time residents -- which climbs to 30,000 in the summer. Golf courses and water fun are the main attractions.

Liz Pulliam Weston's column appears every Monday and Thursday, exclusively on MSN Money

Only The Best Cakes

Charm City Cakes is the most inventive cake shop in the planet! Best tasting also. You must visit their web site and check them out on The Food Network. Ace Of Cakes. Here is the copy of their blog- Charm City Cakes was started in March of 2000 when Chef Duff had tired of wandering the country and decided to settle in Baltimore. At first, Chef Duff was just making a few cakes for friends and family, but as word got out about his uncommon creations, business picked up fast. In March of 2002, Chef Duff was getting so inundated with cake orders that he decided to fling off the oppression of his day job and make cake baking his full time gig! He quickly outgrew his home kitchen and two bakeries; in August of 2005 he bought a 6,000 square foot cake compound in Remington. Today, Charm City Cakes has grown to a staff of eleven friends who make cakes, listen to music, and eat a lot of sushi.

Here at Charm City Cakes, we are motivated by constantly trying to outdo ourselves by making cakes that are beautiful, challenging, and as out-of-the-ordinary as possible! Our inspiration comes from everywhere: art, fabric, furniture, architecture, landscapes, science, music, anything! Most of all, our inspiration comes from you! Each cake is individually designed to match you, your personality, and the theme of the occasion you are celebrating.

We only have one rule at Charm City Cakes, and that is whatever we do, we must have fun! Charm City Cakes is a very relaxed, creative environment – and that spirit is reflected in every cake we bake. Our staff is a ragtag group of musicians, artists, and creative souls with experience in architectural modeling, graphic design, sculpture, painting, DJ-ing, coffee slingin’, performance art, massage therapy, and waitressing. Our designs are unique, our flavors are unusual and delicious, and our demeanor is chill but professional. Our cakes are all individually baked to order, and every cake is always fresh, never frozen. We have over 40 flavors, and experiment with new ones all the time - - if you don’t see it on our list, don’t be afraid to ask, ‘cause we can probably make it.

There are no limits to what we can do here at Charm City Cakes. You dream it, we’ll bake it, you eat it.

The Best Hotel In The Most Beautiful Place

Nestled on the cliffs of Big Sur, California, Post Ranch Inn provides the ultimate accommodations for a romantic getaway for those seeking a luxurious escape for a honeymoon, anniversary, or a relaxing vacation. The luxury resort’s organic architecture embraces the dramatic beauty of the Big Sur coastline. From here you can explore all that nature has to offer, or take a short drive to the picturesque towns of Monterey and Carmel.

Located off Highway One in Big Sur, this Small Luxury Hotel member is a sanctuary suited to all your needs. Rooms offer a rustic elegance with luxury and comfort. Relax by the pools and take in the views of the Ventana mountains, awaken your senses with an in-room massage, spa treatment, or daily yoga classes. Our award-winning Sierra Mar restaurant offers an awe-inspiring setting overlooking the Pacific Ocean, with stunning views of the Big Sur coast, perfect for a romantic dinner for two.

New Years Finest Drinks

Vod-Aid- Simple Vodka PunchDirections: 2 quarts of cherry Kool- aid mixed with approximately 10 fingers of the vodka of your choice or more in a punch bowl with ice. Try not to over power the kool-aid juice too much. This is a great center piece drink for a New Year's Eve party. Float thinly sliced orange peels on top. Serve in tall tumbler glasses with a ladle. Be warned with this drink that guest may feel the need to add their own liquor of choice to this recipe. You may end of with a very wild punch if you have sneaky guests.Emerald-Tini Vodka Cocktail-Directions: In a shaker stir 2 fingers vodka (I prefer Rain vodka with is a certified organic brand of vodka), 1 finger dry vermouth and 1 finger chartreuse with ice. Pour into a chilled martini glass. Float a twist of lemon on top. This New Year's cocktail has a beautiful color that your guests will love.Cranberry Candy Cane Shooters-Directions: In a tall shooter glass add 3 fingers of vodka. Fill the rest of the glass with cranberry juice. Stir with a candy cane stick and leave it as garnish as you serve this delightful vodka shooter.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Just Ask Amy

This web site has been started because I want to help people. I am thirty years old and I have done it all and seen it all... There's not much that I miss , so please come to my blog and ask any advice you need or any question at all. If I don't have the answer I will find it, or I will direct you to someone who will. I also can give gift and party ideas . I am an excellent planner and venue finder for the best cost out there!~ SO please give me a try and tell your friends..