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    Hello, foodies…

    I just put my mom’s Mother’s Day card in the mail and was just thinking about all the cards and flowers I’ve sent to my mom over the years. Then I remembered the time I made my mom breakfast. I was about 12. It was a Sunday morning, I woke up very, very early, and I remember creeping downstairs…I was trying to be so quiet so I didn’t wake her.

    Luckily, I had already been helping mom in the kitchen so I knew how to make bacon and eggs. So I made bacon, eggs, and I also prepared a grapefruit for her. For as long as I can remember, my mother would eat half a grapefruit—sprinkled with a touch of sugar—for breakfast. I put it in its own dish and took a paring knife and cut out all the individual little sections, just like I had seen her do 1,000 times. Then I made instant coffee (my, how times have changed!) and set it all on the table for her.

    Mom came downstairs as I was pouring the coffee and said, “what are you doing, David?” And I just I said, “Happy Mother’s Day, mom, I made you breakfast.” Well, she cried and I handed her a homemade card I had made for her the day before. I was so proud of myself and I pray the food was as good as she claimed.

    Since it’s Thursday—and I’m feeling a little nostalgic—I thought some throwback pictures of my mom and I—and my family—might be fun.

    David, his sister, and his brother

    My brother, sister, and me waaaaaay back when.


    David's Mom, Sarah

    My mom, Sarah. This was taken during my high school years…isn’t she pretty?

     

    Sarah and David...and Nana's Nanner Pudding!

    Mom and I ready to dive into my Nana’s Nanner Pudding. It's DELICIOUS.

     

    David, Sarah, & Chip

    My mom, my brother Chip, and me.


    Shopping for peach cobbler ingredients

    Shopping for peach cobbler ingredients!!

     

    Sarah's Birthday

    This was taken on my mom’s birthday several years ago…I was so happy to be with her on her special day.

     

    David & Sarah

    And this is the most recent shot—another birthday gathering. Just last month, my brother, sister, and I surprised mom by all coming to town.

    The only thing I never did for my mom that would have been fun was to throw her a tea party…just like the British do so well. If that sounds like something your mom, wife, grandma, or friend would like, I found some extended assortment items you should know we carry here at QVC.

    PHOTO

    K133416, the 16-oz Honey Pot from Le Creuset

     

    PHOTO

    K297730, Breville’s One-Touch Tea Maker

     

    PHOTO

    M109694, Cheryl’s 36-pc Buttercream Frosted Flower Cutout Cookies

     

    PHOTO

    H138775, Lenox Butterfly Meadow Dessert Plates – Set of 4

     

    PHOTO

    H365673, Lenox French Perle Teapot

     

    Happy Mother’s Day!!
    —David

    P.S. In honor of Mother's Day--and just because I want to talk directly with you all--I'm hosting my very own chat today on my Facebook page at 11am ET. I'd love for you to join me...it's open moms, dads, everyone!


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    Sequins! Formerly the domain of showgirls and 20-something's looking to rock their New Year's Eve, these embellishments have shown up on the runways for spring and fall reworked in a subtle way to add shimmer to an outfit any time of day. In fact, they’re so wearable I put them on no fewer than six of my shirts from my spring collection. 

    Don't think you can pull off sequins during the day? Check out these three outfits that show you just what to do.

     

    1. All Business

    Power suit, meet power sequins: A blazer, dark denim or navy pants and a patterned blouse with a subtle shimmer of sequins is a chic and unexpected look for the office. Last step? Add a killer heel and this look takes you from the office to the evening. Go get ‘em, girl. 

     

    2. Best of the Brunch

    A sequined skirt has a lot of style oomph, so if you’re keeping it casual and wearing it to brunch with the girls, you’ve got to dress it down with super-casual accessories. Stay away from other shimmery or silky materials and opt for a button-front and sweater, slouch bag and slip-on sneakers. 

     

    3. Going to the Club


    The beach club, that is! — paired with crisp white pants, a denim jacket and flats or skimmers, a sequined shirt is just as appropriate for a casual summer stroll as it is for running errands. 

    See these looks come to life when I’m on QVC on May 11th. And tell me how YOU style with sequin: Share your photos on Instagram and tag me with @clintonkellyofficial #kellybyclintonkelly and check out my entire collection here.

    Look cute and don’t take any crap!

    xo Clinton Kelly


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  • 05/07/15--08:28: Live & In Control
  • My last Women with Control® TSV was so special and so much fun, I just have to share my favorite moments from that day with you.

    Having a Today’s Special Value is exciting enough, and having my first show with a live studio audience that same day took things to another level. I have to say, having my Wardrobe Warriors there with me made it even better.

    I could not believe how many of you showed up wearing your favorite Women with Control® and Attitudes by Renée® designs. Some of you even had on Citiknits! There was a sister duo who bought my Women with Control® TSV and changed into them right before the show(one of whom was celebrating a birthday that day!). You all looked so fabulous it felt like the world’s most stylish family reunion.

    My Wardrobe Warriors were excited, engaging and full of fabulous ideas. Meeting you before the show was such a pleasure, and the No More Wiggle, No More Jiggle™ dance-off was amazing. In fact, I want to thank a few members of the QVC family for coming together and helping me give the winner of the dance-off a makeover, and for touching up my Wardrobe Warriors before the show began. It was such a pleasure having IT Cosmetics brand ambassadors Desiree Zirolli and Veronica Horn, Clarks shoes, Breezies Intimates, Maria McCool from Calista Tools and Aimee Kestenberg bags all contribute to our makeover.

    Thanks to you, Wardrobe Warriors, the entire day was a fabulous success. I can’t thank you enough, and sincerely hope we get to do it again.

    With Attitude,

    Renée

    P.S. Were you able to get my Women with Control® Cropped Cargo Pants? Tune into this video for Wardrobe Warriors tips on how to style and accessorize them.


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  • 05/07/15--08:53: Amazing Grace: Part II
  • “What are your favorite…baby names?” I asked to my not yet husband,  one gorgeous fall evening while walking down Manhattan Beach Boulevard in Southern California. Days before, we’d started playing this game where we would ask each other to name their favorites in a particular category as a way to get to know each other even better. Though at this point, to me it didn’t matter, I was smitten and completely in love. We were still counting our couple status in weeks at that point, but it felt like months since our first official date never really ended.

    “I don’t know,” he replied, honestly thinking about what he would name his kids instead of completely freaking out like any other twenty-eight year old would when blindsided by this question from someone he just started dating.

    “What about you?” he volleyed.

    “Grace for a girl. I love that name, but for a boy…,” I trailed off.

     “I like strong, biblical, traditional names. Maybe Ben?” I had these two close friends in my high school youth group who were brother and sister. His name was Ben. He was this adorable, wholesome, southern Californian skater boy who loved Jesus. I always felt safe and happy around him. He was like a brother to me. His face popped into my head and it felt cozy.

    “Yea… I like Ben.” The handsome man with the dark hair and happy eyes said back to me. “Grace and Ben.”  He looked at me again, smiling, almost settling on the picture of our future we had just discussed.  He squeezed me a little closer and we walked in step toward the ocean. His eyes held mine for a few seconds longer, getting gradually wider with that glimpse of what could be one day….

    That was five months before we were engaged, seventeen months before we were married and four and a half years before our first miscarriage. Five years later we were diagnosed with infertility, and it seemed like an eternity before we were truly given God’s Grace.

    Our faith was something my husband and I had in common immediately.  When I met him I was instantly drawn to that and I know he was put in my path by the Lord. At the time I prayed for the Lord’s favor in my life but was deliberately disobeying Him in so many areas of my life.  My husband fell into my life by the true grace of God. I did not deserve him. But that is the definition of Grace; undeserved favor, so its not a coincidence that we one day hoped to name our child Grace.

    Today that child we spoke about nearly eight years before she was born to another woman is five and a half years old and the ultimate gift from God.  She was adopted at birth and placed into my arms seconds after she took her first breath.  That handsome man, who so easily accepted my love and got down on two knees to ask for my hand in marriage despite all my baggage, was frantically trying to get home from a business trip to meet his daughter. She was three weeks early (and four years late according to our plan,) but right on time for God.

    The months leading up to her birth after we were matched with her birth parents and we knew she was coming, my aunt introduced me to the Grace line at philosophy. From the moment I read the inspiration on the bottles and jars, saw the pink packaging and inhaled the heavenly scent, I was hooked. The nursery and bathroom had bottles and jars of Grace, and to this day, I have Amazing Grace throughout my home.  Grace and her slightly younger sister Georgia call it the “Grace lotion” and always ask where the “Georgia lotion” is. That amazing Grace scent, will always take me back to the time we were waiting for Grace.  Not just the gorgeous baby girl, but also the undeserved favor from our Lord.

    Ben never made an appearance, miscarriages and infertility can rob you of the family you once dreamed of, but we are so blessed by our Grace and our little miracle Georgia, and who knows, God has a plan, and while it might not be our time line or the picture we painted when we were in our 20’s, it is always filled with His Grace.

    I have so much to celebrate in life and am so thankful for everything.  To read the full story in one of my earlier blogs click here > What Grace Means to Me Blog and The Girls 5 Months Apart blog.

    Be sure to keep up with on Facebook too to follow more of my behind the scenes photos and moments :)

    Have a blessed Mommy day!

    xo

    Kerstin

     


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    In honor of Mother's Day, some of your favorite hosts are sharing their proudest "mom moments!" 

    Nancy Hornback

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    This note came from Isabella's kindergarten teacher this past October. It made me SO proud to be her mom!

    "Good morning! I just wanted to write a quick email and let you know that Isabella has been a wonderful friend today.  We got a new student in our class this morning and she sits next to Isabella.  She has been very helpful showing her where everything goes, helping her find her cubby, and pencil box.  Be proud, not many kids would take it upon themselves to do that."  A proud moment for me, indeed!"

    Alberti Popaj

    “I’m proud of my mother for her inner beauty, her strong faith, and her ability to always face the world with a smile.”

    Jennifer Coffey

     My proudest moment as a mom is any time my Gabby chases a dream...and she does that quite often! She'll get it in her head that she wants something, and I know it's already a lock when she declares it's in her sights. One day we drove past a karate studio and Gabby said "I'd like to get good at that." Next thing I know she's a brown belt! She declared that she wanted to give modeling a try, and next thing I know she's doing a runway show for girls' formals. She thought running for student council was a good idea, and became treasurer of her class. She isn't just my pride and joy, she my dream-chasing role model!

    Kerstin Lindquist

    Anytime one of my girls does something compassionate for the other or reminds me about Jesus' love, I just melt with pride. I love that they are growing up as little girls of faith.

    Amy Stran

    I know there will be so many proud moments in the future, but for right now I think my proudest moment as a mother so far is giving birth to Bree. I just can’t seem to wrap my finger around the idea that Bree is here because of us!

    Sandra Bennett

    My proudest moment as a mother is every time I see my daughters being kind to each other. They love each other very much and it shows. I try to teach them that “family is first.” It’s easy to be nice and polite to a classmate, friend, or even a stranger and save your nastiest behavior for home. I remind them that they need to treat each other with that same kindness they give others. They sometimes fight, but they are rarely mean to each other. Of course, they are still young. So far, so good!

    Sharon Faetsch

    When both of my children and I first received our new color belts in Tae Kwon Do.  We all had to train hard to achieve it!

    Jill Bauer

    My proudest moments as a mom are when Kylie and Trevor are complimented by teachers and coaches for being respectful, kind and for being pleasures to have in the classroom or on a team.

    Mary Beth Roe

     

    Mark and I are certainly proud of all 4 of our children, but if I had to pick one as my proudest mom moment, I would have to say it was when our son, Eric, was given the award of "Most Coachable Player" at his high school tennis banquet. It was given to the player most able to take feedback with a positive attitude and then take the feedback and apply it to his game. That was the best award one of my kids could ever get in my mind, since to me, it's not about winning, it's about the respect you give the coach and the humility it takes to take criticism and turn it into a positive thing.

    Jane Treacy

    I cherish every moment. The bond with your child begins as soon as that baby is in your arms.

    Rachel Boesing

    My mom is a humanist, feminist, civil rights activist, and all around compassionate, caring, amazing woman. She has spent her life giving voice to those who need to be heard. I am proud of every moment she is on the planet.

    Dan Wheeler


    My mom’s prayers and her advice have made me who I am. I know and greatly appreciate the sacrifices that she made for me and my sisters.

    Stacey Stauffer

    Honestly my proudest mom moment is every day.  To see my boys try, thrive and love.  I know it might sound silly but it's the truth.

    We'd love to hear about your proudest mom moment! Share it with us in the comments below, and have a happy Mother's Day!

     


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    For this weeks recipe weekend, I prepared a Cedar wrapped Salmon with a Shitake Slaw.  I love the marriage of fish with an asian side dish.  Light, refreshing and healthy.  Spring and Summer are the perfect time to break out the fish recipes. What's your favorite fish dish?

    Here's what you need:

    Ingredients (serves 2)

    ½ lb. shitake mushrooms

    1 clove garlic

    2 TB fresh ginger

    ¼ bunch basil

    2 medium size graffiti eggplant (or Japanese eggplant)

    2 wild Alaskan Salmon filets

    ¼ cup soy sauce

    1 TB honey

    2 TB sesame oil

    1 cup shredded carrots

    1 TB butter or ghee

    2 cedar wraps

    Kitchen twine

     

    Prepare Ingredients

    Preheat oven to 450 degrees.  Soak cedar wraps in water for 20 minutes.  Wipe mushrooms clean with damp paper towel

    and thinly slice.  Mince garlic.  Trim skin of ginger and mince.  Rinse basil and roughly tear leaves, discarding stems.  Rinse

    eggplant and create a roll cut of 2-inch wedges (rotate eggplant while cutting on alternating diagonals). Rinse Salmon and pat dry

    with paper towel.

    Start Eggplant

    In bowl, whisk together soy sauce, honey, ½ of sesame oil, ½ of garlic, ½ of ginger, salt and pepper to taste.  On foil-lined baking sheet

    Toss eggplant with ½ of glaze, reserving remainder.  Roast halfway tender, about 15 minutes.

    Make Slaw

    In medium bowl, toss carrots, mushrooms and remaining garlic, ginger and sesame oil.  Season with salt and pepper.  Set aside.

    Assemble Wraps

    Remove cedar wraps from water and lay flat.  Cut twine into two, 6-8 inch pieces.  Place salmon in center of wraps and dot evenly with butter or ghee.  Spoon over slaw.  Carefully wrap cedar over salmon and slaw (cedar edges may just barely touch, they don’t need to close completely around the salmon) and secure with twine.  Add cedar wraps to same baking sheet as eggplant.

    Roast Eggplant and Wraps

    Reduce oven to 425 degrees.  Toss remaining glaze over eggplant and put back in oven with cedar wraps and roast until salmon is cooked and tender, about 10 minutes.  Remove.

    Plate Salmon

    Untie wraps, discarding cedar and garnish salmon with basil.  Serve and Enjoy. 

    Stacey


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    A few months ago, my friend Lori called me and challenged me to run the Broad Street Run with her this year.  We did it together six years ago & she thought it was time again!!  I moaned & groaned, but said YES, let’s do it!! 

    If you are not a runner (like me) and you do not live in the Philadelphia area, let me tell you a little about this event.  People come from all over the world to compete in this event.  This year this race attracted over 41,000 runners!   The organization holds a lottery to see who can be registered for this race!!  Well Lori & I made the cut!

    The race starts in North Philadelphia & for 10 miles travels south on Broad Street through Center City Philadelphia to the Philadelphia Naval Yard where you find the finish line.  Yes—10 miles!!

    What I love about this race—is that you see all kinds of runners, old & young—there is a group of grade school kids who participate,  80 year olds, traditional athletes & not so traditional (I count myself in that category).  They assign all of the different skill levels to colored corrals—you know let the professionals upfront, so they don’t knock the less skilled over!  In fact the winner of this year’s event was Haile Mengesha, his time—47 minutes, 52 seconds.  Congratulations Haile!!!!

    My very dear friend Christopher was also going to be there.  Christopher had major back surgery not too long ago & he has taken on running as a way to get healthy & stay motivated.  We were so excited when we found each other in our corral!!  We hugged & hugged, and talked about how we were so proud of each other just for being there!!

     

    One of the most amazing parts of the entire race, is that there are hundreds of volunteers handing out water & Gatorade along the way.  And even the locals who live along Broad Street come out to cheer the runners on!!  Sometimes that one person, throwing a cheer my way, really helped to keep  me motivated!! 

     

    As we ran through the campus of Temple University, the Temple band was there to cheer everyone on!!! 

    We even had REAL cheerleaders!! 

    Each mile is marked with a huge sign on both sides of the road as well as a clock with the currently time of the race. 

     

    Here is Philadelphia’s City Hall—this marks more than half way to the finish line!!!

    As I rounded City Hall and came upon mile 6 (ish), I found my friend Daniel waiting & looking for me to cheer me on!!!!  He joined me for the remainder of the race!!  He also said he’d treat me to lunch for completing the race—how sweet!!!  I however chose a raincheck—I was way too tired to be social!!

    As we are chatting & catching up, we spotted the mile seven marker, where Lori was waiting. Unfortunately Lori was unable to run the race with me, but she lives on Broad Street and was waiting outside of her apartment with a huge sign to cheer me on!! 

     

    Daniel, me & Lori

    Daniel kept on coaching me for the remainder of the race!!!  When we got to mile 9, I could taste the end!!!  By this time my feet were hurting & my legs felt like I had sand bags attached to them!!  But I was NOT going to give up since I had already gotten so far!! 

    And then, we saw it—

     

    Once you get to this point, there is ONLY on quarter mile left!!!  “Keep pushing Angel” Daniel cheered!!!

    I saw the finish line ahead…. There were soldiers waiting to give everyone high fives for crossing the line.  I crossed, then I broke down in tears.   It was just such an emotional day.  You see, I do not consider myself an athlete—I do work out and have for many years, but this is something I had only ever done once before!  And boy was I so proud of myself for finishing.

    I even got to have my picture taken with Mayor Michael Nutter, he was so nice!!

     

    I have to tell you that nothing was as sweet as receiving my medal for completing the race-

    My time was 2 hours & 40 minutes—last time I finished in about 2 hours & 35 minutes, I did not train as hard this time, so I was very happy with my time!  Not bad for a non-athlete!! 

    While running this race, Christopher & I lost each other, but I was very happy that he finished just a few minutes after me with a time of 2 hours & 49 minutes!

     

    Kristy who works with me at Quacker Factory also competed in this race!  She runs more often that I do, but I was so proud of her for finishing in less than two hours—1 hour 55 minutes!!!  Go girl!!!!

     

    Claudine, Heather & Kristy

    I am so proud of all of the runners for completing their goal of finishing the Broad Street Run!  So what goals do you have for yourself??  You won’t accomplish anything, unless you Dream Big (as Jeanne used to say).  Set those goals & put it on the wall!!!! 

    Until next time—Quack, Quack—

    Angel


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  • 05/08/15--07:28: Meet the Parents
  • Even though we were in London for a full week, the two nights leading up to the wedding were highly significant! We hadn't had a chance to meet Alice's parents until Thursday night before the wedding. They invited us to their home for dinner and welcomed us with open arms!

    Alice's Parents: Paul and Lisa

    Alice's Mum, Lisa, is a teacher and a tutor, so she is kind, gracious, nurturing and very hospitable. Lisa and I hit it off immediately. We have a few things in common: we are both blonde, similar in age, love to cook and bake, we both have been married about the same amount of years, and we both love the Lord! What more could we want?

    Just like Alice, Lisa is lovely inside AND out, and I know I will love being friends with her for the rest of my life!

    Alice's Dad, Paul, has his own printing business. He, like Lisa, was raised in the London area, but his family is from Trinidad. Paul is very friendly and loves to laugh. He exudes joy when you talk to him. He and Mark really enjoyed their conversations, and I can tell that they, too, will be friends for life!

    Lisa showed us pictures of Alice as a baby and her growing up years. It just gave us a better idea of Alice's background and perhaps what a "little Alice" may look like someday years from now!

    I know that in-laws and mother-in-laws get a bad rap and a negative connotation, but after meeting Alice's family, including her younger brother, David, 19, we are thrilled with our new family members across the pond!  Even Elizabeth said, "I love my new siblings!"

    Lisa and David

    David and Elizabeth

     

     

    Counting our blessings, 
    Mary Beth Roe 


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    QVC, Inc.

    TARTE BEAUTY IN THE BASICS SWEEPSTAKES

    OFFICIAL RULES

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    1. ELIGIBILITY: The Sweepstakes is open to legal residents of the United States and District of Columbia, excluding Rhode Island, who are 18 years or older as of date of entry.  Employees and agents of Sponsor and their parents, affiliates and subsidiaries, and their immediate families (parents, children, siblings and spouses) and their same household members are not eligible. Void outside of the United States and District of Columbia, and where prohibited by law. Void in Rhode Island and Puerto Rico.  Subject to all federal, state and local laws and regulations.

    2. SWEEPSTAKES ENTRY: There are two (2) ways to enter the Sweepstakes, on your mobile device via the Facebook mobile app (“Facebook”) or by mail.  To enter the Sweepstakes by mail, send your name, address, and daytime telephone number on a standard 4 inch by 6 inch postcard addressed to tarte Beauty in the Basics Sweepstakes Studio Park Mail Code 201, West Chester, PA 19380 (“Mail Entry”). To enter the Sweepstakes via Facebook, complete the following steps:

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    By submitting a Facebook Entry or Mail Entry, you are signifying that you have read, understand and agree to these Official Rules. 

    Limit of two (2) entries per person during the entry period either by Mail or Online.  Any person who attempts to participate with entries in excess of these entry limitations will be disqualified.Any other attempted form of Sweepstakes entry is void. Any person who attempts to participate under multiple identities or uses any device or artifice to enter in excess of this entry limitation will be disqualified; use of programmed, automated or like means of entry is prohibited. All duplicate entries will be discarded. Use of multiple email addresses or Facebook accounts by the same individual to enter is prohibited and such multiple entries shall be voided. In the event of a dispute regarding the identity of the person submitting an entry, the entry will be deemed submitted by the authorized account holder of the mobile device associated with the Facebook account of the entry, which the entrant will have the obligation to establish. Sponsor is not responsible for late, incomplete, misdirected, delayed, or undelivered entries, including without limitation inability to access QVC’s or the entrant’s Facebook account, or entries not timely received due to telephone failures, Internet or website failures and disruptions, and Internet service provider problems. Incomplete information may result in disqualification of entry. No entries may be effected on behalf of someone else. All Mail Entries are the non-returnable property of Sponsor. All eligible entries carry an equal chance of winning.

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    Total Estimated Value of Prize: Approx. $188.00

    If a Winner is unable or unwilling to accept the prize he/she will be disqualified and the prize forfeited; and, in such event, an alternate Winner shall be selected from among all remaining eligible entries received. Prize cannot be substituted or transferred by Winner. If a Prize must be forfeited, Winner will not be given the cash value of the prize. Prize Winner is solely responsible for all expenses not expressly included. All taxes are the responsibility of the Winner. Winner and/or parent or legal guardian may be required to sign an IRS Form 1099, Form W-9, or the equivalent for all prizes valued at $600 or greater, or for any prize as to which Sponsor, in their sole discretion, believes it is warranted. Prize provided by QVC, Inc.

    6. RELEASE OF LIABILITY: Sponsor’s failure to enforce any provision of these Official Rules shall not constitute the waiver of such provision. “Released Parties” (as defined in Rule 8) are not responsible for any changes or unavailability of the Facebook service that may interfere with the Sweepstakes (including any limitations, restrictions or conditions on Sponsor's ability to use the service for the Sweepstakes) or ability of entrant to timely enter, receive notices or communicate with Sponsor. Released Parties are not responsible for failed, partial or garbled computer transmissions beyond their control, or for technical failures of any kind beyond their control, including but not limited to electronic malfunction, programming errors or failures, or damage or failure of any network, mobile device, hardware or software. If for any reason the Sweepstakes (in whole or in part) is not capable of running as planned, as solely determined by Sponsor, including, but not limited to, by infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud or technical failures or any other problems beyond Sponsor's control that can corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity or proper conduct of the Sweepstakes, Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the Sweepstakes and/or disqualify any individual who tampers with (or attempts to tamper with) the registration process/operation of the Sweepstakes. In any such event, Sponsor shall conduct the Sweepstakes and make the Sweepstakes prize available to be won in a manner which is fair, appropriate and consistent with the spirit of these Official Rules, as determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion. Notice of cancellation/termination/ modification/suspension of Sweepstakes will be posted on www.qvc.com. Tampering (as referenced above) includes but is not limited to use of any unauthorized apparatus (be it hardware, software, mobile device, or otherwise) to participate in the Sweepstakes. Released Parties assume no responsibility for any error, omission, interruption, deletion, defect, delay in operation or transmission, communications line failure, theft or destruction or unauthorized access to (or any problems or technical malfunctions of) any telephone network or lines, computer online systems, servers, or providers, computer equipment, hardware, software, failure of any email, tag or comment to be received/properly recorded on account of technical problems or traffic congestion on the Internet or mobile service provider, or any combination thereof. Sponsor and its agencies are not responsible for any injury or damage to participant's or any other person's computer related to or resulting from participation in or downloading any materials from this Sweepstakes or the Website. Further, Released Parties are not responsible for any incorrect or inaccurate information, whether caused by Website users, tampering, hacking, or by any of the equipment or programming associated with or utilized in the Sweepstakes.

    Participants further agree not to damage or cause interruption of the Sweepstakes and/or prevent others from participating in the Sweepstakes. CAUTION: ANY ATTEMPT TO DAMAGE ANY ONLINE SERVICE OR WEBSITE OR UNDERMINE THE LEGITIMATE OPERATION OF THE CONTEST VIOLATES CRIMINAL OR CIVIL LAWS. IF SUCH AN ATTEMPT IS MADE OR AN INDIVIDUAL OTHERWISE ATTEMPTS TO DEFRAUD SPONSOR, SPONSOR MAY DISQUALIFY ANY PARTICIPANT MAKING SUCH ATTEMPT AND SEEK DAMAGES TO THE FULLEST EXTENT OF THE LAW.

    7. CONDITIONS AND LIMITATIONS OF LIABILITY: By participating, participants agree to be bound by and abide by these Official Rules and the decisions of Sponsor, which shall be final and binding in all respects and not subject to appeal. By participating in this Sweepstakes, entrants agree to release and hold harmless Sponsor, their respective parent, subsidiary, affiliated and successor companies, advertising and promotion agencies , and each of their respective officers, directors, agents, representatives and employees, as well as each of their respective successors and assigns (collectively, the "Released Parties") from any and all actions, claims, loss or damage to person(s) or property arising in any manner, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part from participation in this Sweepstakes or any Sweepstakes-related activity, and/or acceptance, possession, misuse or use of any prize. By accepting the prize, Winner authorizes the Sponsor and its designees to use his/her name, voice, likeness, photograph, prize information, biographical data and city and state of residence in any media now known or hereafter discovered, worldwide, including on the World Wide Web and Internet, in perpetuity, at any time or times, in programming, advertising, trade and/or promotional material relating to this Sweepstakes or on a Winner's List (if applicable) without additional compensation or notice, review or approval (unless prohibited by law). Sponsor is not obligated to use any of the above mentioned information or materials, but may do so and may edit such information or materials, at Sponsor's sole discretion, without obligation or compensation.

    TO THE EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, RELEASED PARTIES MAKE NO WARRANTY, REPRESENTATION, OR GUARANTEE, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN FACT OR IN LAW, RELATIVE TO THE USE OF THE PRIZE, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, ITS QUALITY, MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.

    8. DISPUTES: Arbitration/Choice Of Law: To the fullest extent permitted by law, entrants agree that: (1) any and all disputes, claims, and causes of action arising out of or connected with this Sweepstakes, or the prize, or the determination of the Winner, shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action, and exclusively by arbitration pursuant to the Rules of the American Arbitration Association, then effective, and (2) any and all claims, judgments and awards shall be limited to actual out-of-pocket costs incurred, including costs associated with entering this Sweepstakes (if any) but in no event attorneys’ fees; and (3) under no circumstances will entrant be permitted to obtain awards for and entrant hereby waives all rights to claim punitive, incidental and consequential damages and any other damages, other than for actual out-of-pocket expenses, and any and all rights to have damages multiplied or otherwise increased. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules, or the rights and obligations of entrant and/or Released Parties in connection with the Sweepstakes, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, without regard for conflicts of law doctrine, and all proceedings shall take place in the City of Philadelphia, County of Philadelphia.

    9. PRIVACY POLICY: The entry information provided is subject to The QVC Privacy Statement accessible via www.qvc.com. To read the QVC Policy, access the QVC Website and then click on the Privacy Statement link under the “Policies & Information” heading.

    10. WINNER’S LIST: For the names of prize winners, mail a self-addressed, stamped envelope tarte Beauty in the Basics Sweepstakes, QVC Studio Park Mail Code 201, West Chester, PA 19380.

     


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    QVC, Inc.

    TARTE BEAUTY IN THE BASICS SWEEPSTAKES

    OFFICIAL RULES

     

    QVC, Inc. (“Sponsor”) is sponsoring the TARTE BEAUTY IN THE BASICS SWEEPSTAKES ("Sweepstakes"). This Sweepstakes is not sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with, Instagram.

    NO PURCHASE NECESSARY.  A PURCHASE OR PAYMENT OF ANY KIND WILL NOT INCREASE YOUR CHANCES OF WINNING. MUST BE 18 YEARS OR OLDER TO ENTER. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED.

    By entering this Sweepstakes, entrants agree to abide by all terms of these Official Rules and the decisions of the Sponsor whose decisions shall be final and binding.

    1. ELIGIBILITY: The Sweepstakes is open to legal residents of the United States and District of Columbia, excluding Rhode Island, who are 18 years or older as of date of entry.  Employees and agents of Sponsor and their parents, affiliates and subsidiaries, and their immediate families (parents, children, siblings and spouses) and their same household members are not eligible. Void outside of the United States and District of Columbia, and where prohibited by law. Void in Rhode Island and Puerto Rico.  Subject to all federal, state and local laws and regulations.

    2. SWEEPSTAKES ENTRY: There are two (2) ways to enter the Sweepstakes, on your mobile device via the Instagram mobile app (“Instagram”) or by mail.  To enter the Sweepstakes by mail, send your name, address, and daytime telephone number on a standard 4 inch by 6 inch postcard addressed to tarte Beauty in the Basics Sweepstakes Studio Park Mail Code 201, West Chester, PA 19380 (“Mail Entry”). To enter the Sweepstakes via Instagram, complete the following steps:

    Step 1 – Access your Instagram account on your mobile device. If you do not have an Instagram account, you can download Instagram for free in the Apple App Store on an iOS device (iPhone, iPod, iPad), http://bit.ly/zs83d4, or in Google Play for an Android device, http://bit.ly/HbEuQH. After installing Instagram, open it on your device and tap the 'Sign up' button at the bottom left of the screen to begin the account creation process.

    Step 2 – Search “@QVC” and “@tartecosmetics” on Instagram and click the “FOLLOW” button (assuming that you are not following QVC and tarte Cosmetics on Instagram already).

    Step 3 - “Tag” 3 friends in the comments section of QVC’s sweepstakes photo.

    By submitting an Instagram Entry or Mail Entry, you are signifying that you have read, understand and agree to these Official Rules. 

    Limit of two (2) entries per person during the entry period either by Mail or Online.  Any person who attempts to participate with entries in excess of these entry limitations will be disqualified.Any other attempted form of Sweepstakes entry is void. Any person who attempts to participate under multiple identities or uses any device or artifice to enter in excess of this entry limitation will be disqualified; use of programmed, automated or like means of entry is prohibited. All duplicate entries will be discarded. Use of multiple email addresses or Instagram accounts by the same individual to enter is prohibited and such multiple entries shall be voided. In the event of a dispute regarding the identity of the person submitting an entry, the entry will be deemed submitted by the authorized account holder of the mobile device associated with the Instagram account of the entry, which the entrant will have the obligation to establish. Sponsor is not responsible for late, incomplete, misdirected, delayed, or undelivered entries, including without limitation inability to access QVC’s or the entrant’s Instagram account, or entries not timely received due to telephone failures, Internet or website failures and disruptions, and Internet service provider problems. Incomplete information may result in disqualification of entry. No entries may be effected on behalf of someone else. All Mail Entries are the non-returnable property of Sponsor. All eligible entries carry an equal chance of winning.

    3. SWEEPSTAKES PERIOD: The Sweepstakes begins on or about May 11, 2015 at 12:00 am Eastern Time (“ET”) and ends at 11:59 pm ET on May 13, 2015 (“Sweepstakes Period”).  Instagram Entries must be submitted by 11:59 pm ET on May 13, 2015.  All Mail Entries must be postmarked by May 13, 2015 and received by May 15, 2015.

    4. WINNER DETERMINATION:  Winners will be determined by a random drawing from all eligible entries and will occur on or about May 15, 2015.  Sponsor reserves the right to delay the random drawing. The number of eligible entries received will determine the odds of winning. Winning entries are subject to validation.

    5. WINNER NOTIFICATION: Sponsor or a representative of Sponsor shall contact Potential Winner via Instagram on or about May 15, 2015.  Potential Winners may be required to execute and return an affidavit of eligibility, liability release, and (where legal) an affidavit of publicity prior to receiving the prize. Potential Winners will have forty-eight hours from the time he/she is contacted to respond and accept the prize. Noncompliance with the time period described above will result in disqualification and an alternate winner selected. Potential Winners may be required to present proof of identification prior to claiming prize. Acceptance of any prize shall require acceptance of the terms of these Official Rules and shall grant Sponsor the right to use Winner’s first name, last name and city and state of residence for any publicity associated with this Sweepstakes.

    PRIZE: (1) Grand prize winner will receive a tarte Beauty in the Basics 6pc. Color Collection:

    Retail Value: $47.00  

    (3) tagged friends will each receive a tarte Beauty in the Basics 6 pc. Color Collection:

    Retail Value: $47.00

    Total Estimated Value of Prize: Approx. $188.00

    If a Winner is unable or unwilling to accept the prize he/she will be disqualified and the prize forfeited; and, in such event, an alternate Winner shall be selected from among all remaining eligible entries received. Prize cannot be substituted or transferred by Winner. If a Prize must be forfeited, Winner will not be given the cash value of the prize. Prize Winner is solely responsible for all expenses not expressly included. All taxes are the responsibility of the Winner. Winner and/or parent or legal guardian may be required to sign an IRS Form 1099, Form W-9, or the equivalent for all prizes valued at $600 or greater, or for any prize as to which Sponsor, in their sole discretion, believes it is warranted. Prize provided by QVC, Inc.

    6. RELEASE OF LIABILITY: Sponsor’s failure to enforce any provision of these Official Rules shall not constitute the waiver of such provision. “Released Parties” (as defined in Rule 8) are not responsible for any changes or unavailability of the Instagram service that may interfere with the Sweepstakes (including any limitations, restrictions or conditions on Sponsor's ability to use the service for the Sweepstakes) or ability of entrant to timely enter, receive notices or communicate with Sponsor. Released Parties are not responsible for failed, partial or garbled computer transmissions beyond their control, or for technical failures of any kind beyond their control, including but not limited to electronic malfunction, programming errors or failures, or damage or failure of any network, mobile device, hardware or software. If for any reason the Sweepstakes (in whole or in part) is not capable of running as planned, as solely determined by Sponsor, including, but not limited to, by infection by computer virus, bugs, tampering, unauthorized intervention, fraud or technical failures or any other problems beyond Sponsor's control that can corrupt or affect the administration, security, fairness, integrity or proper conduct of the Sweepstakes, Sponsor reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to cancel, terminate, modify or suspend the Sweepstakes and/or disqualify any individual who tampers with (or attempts to tamper with) the registration process/operation of the Sweepstakes. In any such event, Sponsor shall conduct the Sweepstakes and make the Sweepstakes prize available to be won in a manner which is fair, appropriate and consistent with the spirit of these Official Rules, as determined by Sponsor in its sole discretion. Notice of cancellation/termination/ modification/suspension of Sweepstakes will be posted on www.qvc.com. Tampering (as referenced above) includes but is not limited to use of any unauthorized apparatus (be it hardware, software, mobile device, or otherwise) to participate in the Sweepstakes. Released Parties assume no responsibility for any error, omission, interruption, deletion, defect, delay in operation or transmission, communications line failure, theft or destruction or unauthorized access to (or any problems or technical malfunctions of) any telephone network or lines, computer online systems, servers, or providers, computer equipment, hardware, software, failure of any email, tag or comment to be received/properly recorded on account of technical problems or traffic congestion on the Internet or mobile service provider, or any combination thereof. Sponsor and its agencies are not responsible for any injury or damage to participant's or any other person's computer related to or resulting from participation in or downloading any materials from this Sweepstakes or the Website. Further, Released Parties are not responsible for any incorrect or inaccurate information, whether caused by Website users, tampering, hacking, or by any of the equipment or programming associated with or utilized in the Sweepstakes.

    Participants further agree not to damage or cause interruption of the Sweepstakes and/or prevent others from participating in the Sweepstakes. CAUTION: ANY ATTEMPT TO DAMAGE ANY ONLINE SERVICE OR WEBSITE OR UNDERMINE THE LEGITIMATE OPERATION OF THE CONTEST VIOLATES CRIMINAL OR CIVIL LAWS. IF SUCH AN ATTEMPT IS MADE OR AN INDIVIDUAL OTHERWISE ATTEMPTS TO DEFRAUD SPONSOR, SPONSOR MAY DISQUALIFY ANY PARTICIPANT MAKING SUCH ATTEMPT AND SEEK DAMAGES TO THE FULLEST EXTENT OF THE LAW.

    7. CONDITIONS AND LIMITATIONS OF LIABILITY: By participating, participants agree to be bound by and abide by these Official Rules and the decisions of Sponsor, which shall be final and binding in all respects and not subject to appeal. By participating in this Sweepstakes, entrants agree to release and hold harmless Sponsor, their respective parent, subsidiary, affiliated and successor companies, advertising and promotion agencies , and each of their respective officers, directors, agents, representatives and employees, as well as each of their respective successors and assigns (collectively, the "Released Parties") from any and all actions, claims, loss or damage to person(s) or property arising in any manner, directly or indirectly, in whole or in part from participation in this Sweepstakes or any Sweepstakes-related activity, and/or acceptance, possession, misuse or use of any prize. By accepting the prize, Winner authorizes the Sponsor and its designees to use his/her name, voice, likeness, photograph, prize information, biographical data and city and state of residence in any media now known or hereafter discovered, worldwide, including on the World Wide Web and Internet, in perpetuity, at any time or times, in programming, advertising, trade and/or promotional material relating to this Sweepstakes or on a Winner's List (if applicable) without additional compensation or notice, review or approval (unless prohibited by law). Sponsor is not obligated to use any of the above mentioned information or materials, but may do so and may edit such information or materials, at Sponsor's sole discretion, without obligation or compensation.TO THE EXTENT PERMITTED BY LAW, RELEASED PARTIES MAKE NO WARRANTY, REPRESENTATION, OR GUARANTEE, EXPRESS OR IMPLIED, IN FACT OR IN LAW, RELATIVE TO THE USE OF THE PRIZE, INCLUDING, WITHOUT LIMITATION, ITS QUALITY, MERCHANTABILITY OR FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.

    8. DISPUTES: Arbitration/Choice Of Law: To the fullest extent permitted by law, entrants agree that: (1) any and all disputes, claims, and causes of action arising out of or connected with this Sweepstakes, or the prize, or the determination of the Winner, shall be resolved individually, without resort to any form of class action, and exclusively by arbitration pursuant to the Rules of the American Arbitration Association, then effective, and (2) any and all claims, judgments and awards shall be limited to actual out-of-pocket costs incurred, including costs associated with entering this Sweepstakes (if any) but in no event attorneys’ fees; and (3) under no circumstances will entrant be permitted to obtain awards for and entrant hereby waives all rights to claim punitive, incidental and consequential damages and any other damages, other than for actual out-of-pocket expenses, and any and all rights to have damages multiplied or otherwise increased. All issues and questions concerning the construction, validity, interpretation and enforceability of these Official Rules, or the rights and obligations of entrant and/or Released Parties in connection with the Sweepstakes, shall be governed by, and construed in accordance with, the laws of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, without regard for conflicts of law doctrine, and all proceedings shall take place in the City of Philadelphia, County of Philadelphia.

    9. PRIVACY POLICY: The entry information provided is subject to The QVC Privacy Statement accessible via www.qvc.com. To read the QVC Policy, access the QVC Website and then click on the Privacy Statement link under the “Policies & Information” heading.

    10. WINNER’S LIST: For the names of prize winners, mail a self-addressed, stamped envelope tarte Beauty in the Basics Sweepstakes, QVC Studio Park Mail Code 201, West Chester, PA 19380.

     

     


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    Hello, foodies…

    And Happy (early) Mother’s Day to all the moms, step-moms, grandmas, aunts, and wives. We’ve got something that’s right up your alley this Sunday…Death by Chocolate Trifle!

    Death By Chocolate Trifle

     

    Death by Chocolate Trifle
    Serves 14–16

    This recipe is prepared with the KitchenAid Set of 3 Non-Slip Mixing Bowls (K34993).

    Go to David's Recipe Item Page for the full list of items that David has used in his recipes.

    Ingredients:
    Grilled Strawberries:

    • 2 lbs strawberries, hulled and halved
    • Juice of 1 lemon
    • 1/3 cup sugar
    • 1/2 cup strawberry preserves

    Trifle:

    • 2-1/2 cups whole milk
    • 1/4 cup cold strong coffee
    • 2 (3.9-oz) packages chocolate fudge instant pudding mix
    • 1 (16-oz) container whipped topping, divided
    • 1 lb chocolate cake, cut into 1" pieces
    • 1 (14.3-oz) package Oreos, crumbled

    Preparation:

    1. To prepare the grilled strawberries, preheat an outdoor grill over high heat. Place the halved strawberries, lemon juice, and sugar in a medium-size bowl. Toss until the strawberries are fully coated and place them in a nonstick grill pan. Cook for 5–6 minutes, tossing constantly. Place the berries back into the bowl and add the strawberry preserves. Mix until evenly combined. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 2 hours, or until completely cold.
    2. To prepare the pudding, whisk together the milk, coffee, and the packages of instant pudding in a large bowl until the mixture is thick. Fold in half of the whipped topping until fully incorporated. Press a piece of plastic wrap directly onto the surface of the pudding to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or until completely cold.
    3. Use a large trifle bowl to assemble the trifle. Place 1/3 of the chocolate cake pieces into the bowl followed by 1/3 of the pudding mixture, 1/3 of the grilled strawberries, and 1/3 of the remaining whipped topping. End with 1/3 of the crushed Oreos. Repeat this process 2 more times, finishing with the whipped topping and crushed Oreos. Refrigerate until ready to serve.

    Did you know that you could grill strawberries? You can grill any fruit. Really. And why would you want to do that, you might ask? Well, the heat of the grill caramelizes the sugars intensifying the flavors. Obviously, softer fruits like berries and grapes don’t need much time on the heat at all. And, fruits that soften after picking like melons and peaches shouldn’t be dripping with juice. A firmer fruit holds its shape better on the grill. Grilling baskets are tremendously helpful when grilling fruit, as are skewers. In this recipe, we used a grill pan to cook the strawberries and ended up with a soft, very sweet berry that blends beautifully with the preserves. It looks like the mixture actually came jarred that way. Anyway, the key is to keep those berries moving. And then let them cool completely so it doesn’t alter the texture of your pudding.

    I should add that if you don’t want to grill those berries, you don’t have to. I just wanted to show you how easy the process was and the added flavor you can get from the grill.

    So what if you’re not a trifle fan?

    How about a Caprese Panini?

     

     

    Chicken Cordon Bleu Pizza?

     

    Or a Key Lime Cheesecake Milk Shake?

    And don’t forget that we made my mother’s apricot cake for Mother’s Day on In the Kitchen with David a few years back. And we still have that printable mother’s day card up on QVC.com if the kids want to color a picture.

    Sarah's Apricot Cake

    That Apricot Cake really reminds me of my mom...she made a few times a year and it was always such a treat. What foods come to mind when you think about your mom? Lemon Meringue Pie? Stuffed French Toast? A hearty casserole? I’ll see you this Sunday at Noon ET.

    Keep it flavorful!
    —David


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  • 05/08/15--12:18: Groom's Dinner
  • Being the parents of the groom made the evening before the wedding our responsibility. I had to have Alice's help ahead of time since we had never been to London and yet arrangements needed to be made.

     

    Friday evening was the rehearsal at church and the grooms dinner following it. Walking into an old London church is an experience by itself!  It had this arched ceiling with big white columns going down both sides. A large stained glass window was at the front making it look ever so majestic. It reminded me of a movie, like Sound of Music.

     

    Alice had a maid of honor, three bridesmaids, two junior bridesmaids (one of which was Elizabeth) and one flower girl. Eric had groomsmen from the US and the UK, since he had made some great friends over there while getting his masters degree at the University College of London.  Our second son, Cory, was his Best Man, and our third son, Ryan, was one of the groomsmen. Alice's brother, David, was also one of the groomsmen, and since he and Ryan are the same age, they really got along well!

     

    As soon as Lisa, Alice's Mum, and I saw Alice rehearsing her walk down the aisle with her Dad, and I saw the look on Eric's face of overwhelming joy, we both started crying. Bring out the tissues! The crying has begun!  We couldn't help it!  Reality had hit us that we had really come to this special moment in our lives!  Alice cried a bit at the rehearsal as well,  realizing the time had finally come.  It turned out though that she didn't cry during the wedding!  I guess she got it out the night before!

     

    After the rehearsal, we had the groom's dinner at a restaurant in South Kensington called Obica for the wedding party and family members. What was especially exciting for me was that my three sisters, a sister-in-law, husbands and some of their grown children had arrived from the states, so it was wonderful to see them!  They are all from MN, so we had not seen them since last summer.

     

    One of the most memorable moments of the trip was what we did before dinner that night. We went around the room, and each person introduced themselves and told how they knew Eric or Alice. This was necessary, since some were Brits and some were Americans, and it was their first time to meet. But as people spoke, it was very touching and sometimes emotional as people expressed their love and respect for these two and the impact Eric and Alice had already had on their lives!  It was definitely a "Proud Parent" moment!

     

    After dinner, it was back to the hotels and quick to bed for the big day was coming up next!


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    Let me start by saying Happy Mother's Day to every mother out there! I think Mother's Day is one of the most important days of the year; it is a day where we take a moment to remove our focus from our very busy lives and show appreciation towards our moms (AKA heroes!)

    Because my mom and I have lived together for 15 years, I have picked up many of my mom's characteristics/interests/habits. My mom is no doubt my number one role model, and I strive every day to be more like her.

    I thought I should make a list of all the wonderful things I have inherited/picked up from my mom growing up. We learn so much from our moms, and I am grateful for everything she has taught me.

    1. We both NEVER give up on something we are truly dedicated about, and we never let anyone get in the way of doing what we love. One example of this is when I decided to take up karate during elementary school. All of the boys would make fun of me at school, saying I was too weak to do karate. However, I didn't let their hurtful words stop me from doing what I love. A week later, I brought in a wooden board I kicked in half for show and tell. (You could imagine their faces!) My mom has taught me that stereotypes, doubts, and hurtful words should never stop me from pursuing my dreams and doing what I love. If she didn't have this mind set, I know for a fact she wouldn't be a host on QVC. I look up to her so much, and I am so grateful she has taught me to never give up.

    2. We both value honesty more than anything else in our relationships. The number one thing that makes my relationship with my mom so awesome is that we never lie to each other. She has taught me to be honest ever since I can remember, and the few times I did lie to her blew up in my face. One of the first times I can remember lying to my mom was when I was a kid (probably around 1st grade) my mom made salad for dinner. While we were eating, my mom went to the bathroom, and I threw most of my salad in the trash when she wasn't looking. When she came back, she was glad to see that I ate all of my dinner. Later that night, I was in my room crying out of guilt. I didn't want to admit I lied; so, I decided to not make it a lie. I went and ate the salad; yup, that's right. I ate the SAME salad I threw away. I never told her what happened until a couple months ago. (She thought it was hilarious, but she was proud of how much I valued honesty) Ever since then, I have been 100% honest to my mom.

    3. Both of us try our best to block out negativity in our house; it is unnecessary energy and it just brings us down. We rarely have the TV on, and when it is on it is either a Spurs/Saints game or SpongeBob. We have a strict no news channel rule; the news is swarming with negative stories! Some people could argue it is a way of being in denial, blocking out negative things and pretend bad things don't happen. However, we know that being positive is in no way being in denial, and a home should have a happy and supportive atmosphere. I will take this positivity with me when I move into my own home someday.

    4. Surround yourself with positive people. If there is one thing I value most that my mom has taught me since I've started high school, it is that you should not surround yourself with people who bring you down. I have struggled with this for years. I have had many toxic friendships, and it has always been hard to just let it go. But after this school year, surrounding myself with people who make me happy has been my number one priority. I'd much rather leave a friend’s house feeling uplifted and happy instead of sad or angry. I thank my mom for teaching me to remove negative sources from my life, and it is a skill I will take with me wherever I go.

    5. Love yourself. It sounds weird to say, but it is something we must all learn how to do. Loving yourself is in no way being conceited! If we spend our whole lives hating our appearance or hating the way we are it can be extremely unhealthy for you and others. My mom has taught me to treat myself with respect, because if I don't respect myself other people won't either. If you let people tear you down and fill your brain with negative thoughts about yourself, then you're disrespecting yourself by letting people beat you up. Stand up for yourself; don't depend on others to do so. Love yourself, so you may love others. Surround yourself with people who respect your boundaries, and respect theirs. My mom has always had these beliefs, and I am so grateful she has taught me to do these things.

    6. Live in the moment. This is something I struggled with deeply when we first moved to Pennsylvania. I kept dwelling on my old life in Texas, and I always wished I could go back. During my whole first year in PA I dwelled so much on my past life that I was blind to all of the amazing things PA has to offer. Although PA is different from Texas in so many ways, it is an amazing place to grow up; I am grateful that I feel this way now. It took a lot of time to adjust and move on, but I couldn't have done it without my mom's help. She was always there to remind me of how lucky we were, and she would always help me see all of the amazing things this world has to offer. Life goes on, and so do you.

    Mom, I'm grateful for your encouragement, because you have helped me to believe in myself. But above all, I am just grateful to have you as my mom, because you are the bravest, smartest, brightest, most amazing woman I know. Thank you mom.

    Love, Gabby <3


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  • 05/08/15--12:50: So Thankful for My Mom
  • Dear Q Friends,

    This Sunday is Mother's Day....A day we set aside to honor our mothers, step-mothers, sisters who are moms, daughters who are moms, and those who have been like a mom to us in some way throughout our lives. I am one of the very lucky ones who has a mother who is truly a gift from heaven above. My husband, half-jokingly, calls her "a saint". She would be the first to disagree.

    The older I get, the more I am amazed at how much I've become like my mom. When I was younger, everyone always remarked about how much I was like my dad....in both personality and resemblance. As much as I adore my mother, I really never thought I was very much like her. My younger sister, Jennifer, definitely always LOOKED much more like her than I did. In personality, I was, and am vibrant and outspoken, a leader, very driven to do well, and be successful....just like my dad. I also love cars, pets, taking care of the lawn, baseball, buying presents for those I love, and am the proverbial "life of the party"...like my dad.

    But now that I am older, something peculiar has gradually happened to me, without my even noticing. I have become much more like  my mom. I now see we have the same smile, and the same laugh. (Even though I still have dad's brown eyes and command of a room). But I've become more gentle and kind, patient and helpful, emotional and happy to be in the background... sometimes.....just like my mom. And I love that. Because if I could be even a "smidgeon" of the remarkable person my mother is, I would be honored. She had taught me the gentleness in life, to have a huge heart, to notice the little things of beauty along the way. (Although I STILL cannot make her apple pie or spaghetti sauce HALF as well as she, no matter how hard I try!) I have come to realize that my mother is every bit as strong and outgoing and a leader as my father...sometimes more.... but she was always very subtle about it.

     

    She was and is exceptional and has raised 6 exceptional children, all very different from each other, but all a credit to her and to my dad.

    I am very lucky to have two wonderful parents, who both have had a huge positive influence on the woman I have become. I am so proud to be their daughter. I am so happy I am now,  so much like my mother. Happy Mother's Day to all Mom's, Step Moms, Pet Mom's and EVERY type of Mom. Thank you for the love you give us every single day. We would not be here without you and we are so happy to have you in our lives, or in heaven watching over us. God Bless you and have a wonderful day!!

    Love,
    Carolyn XO


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    Happy Mother’s Day!

    Growing up in the floral industry I know very well that Mother’s Day is hands-down the busiest time of year.

    For as long as I can remember, the week of Mother’s Day I would leave school to go to my parent’s florist shop and help them until the early hours of the morning. Back then, the tradition was for Moms to proudly wear a corsage on Mother’s Day.  And my parents and I would make hundreds and hundreds of corsages. 

    To this day, I hate making corsages and even though I am a traditionalist at heart, I am thrilled that now the trend is making something special for or with your Mom.

    (Just like in these pictures of kids making gardens for their Mother!) 

    As a mom and floral designer, watching young children interested in plants and gardening brings me a joy unlike any other. Although my fingers were numb and I was exhausted from the nights making corsages when I was their age that is where my love of flowers stemmed from (pardon the pun) and where my love and respect for Mothers grew.

    Now, my sons are the ones getting their hands dirty on Mother’s Day.  Every year – as this is still the busiest time of my year as a floral design business – my sons give me a head-start in my gardens. They mulch and weed and get them ready for me to plant. Talk about thoughtful.

    There is a reason that in the floral and gift industries, Mother’s Day beats out any other holiday of the year.  Christmas, Thanksgiving, New Year’s and even Valentine’s Day don’t even come close – not by a mile! The reason is simple. There is nothing more special than Mothers and the gifts they bring to all of us. Happy Mother’s Day Everyone!


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  • 05/10/15--13:26: QVC Plus Crush: May Edition
  • I love May. I love seeing everything come back to life after a long winter, and I love the taste of the upcoming summer that lingers in the air.  The smell of fresh cut grass returns, and I’m able to (hairstyle permitting) drive in to work with my windows down.  Not to be grandiose, but I’ll say it – May is magical.

    I toss around the term “QVC Plus Crush*” to describe current obsessions of mine from the Q.  For one, it makes the guys I work with very uncomfortable, and two – it’s a perfect way to describe my feelings about these products. I’m totally crushing on them 5th grade Style.  

    [*Also, I am fully aware that “QVC Plus Crush” may be like ‘fetch’. As in, it will not happen/catch on.  However, you cannot fault a girl for trying]

    So for May, here are my QVC Plus Crushes: 

    QVC Plus Crush


    TATCHA One-Step Camellia Cleansing Oil

    Lately my main workout has been swimming laps – and  man, that chlorine is really rough on your skin. However, TATCHA has been my complete saving grace. After I jump out of the pool and dry off,  I make  a beeline to the sink to wash my face with this cleansing oil. Immediately my skin feels softer, and  looks better.  However, I am sad to say – it does not remove the embarrassing goggle imprints that are always left on my face. Only time can help me there.

    Shop now: qvc.co/QPlusCrushMay-Tatcha

    Dooney & Bourke Florentine Leather Chelsea Shopper

    Look. As we already learned on the QVC Plus Blog, I love me some Dooney. However, even though I am currently set in the purse department, it doesn’t mean I can’t admire the fine beauty of another Dooney bag when I see it. This bag just screams “summer in the Hamptoms” to me. Even though I’ve never been to the Hamptons, I just have a gut feeling about this. Pair this with a chic Maxi and some sharp sunglasses? I wouldn’t be surprised if paparazzi started following you.

    Shop now: qvc.co/QPlusCrushMay-DBBag

    philosophy favorites mega-size bath & body trio

    Not just Super-sized. MEGA-sized. Yes, you read that right - mega. This Lemon custard trio from Philosophy is gigantic. Not to mention, the scent is absolutely amazing.  I always associate the scent of lemon with summer, and this is like summertime in a bottle (okay 3 bottles) if you ask me.  And unlike a real lemon, there’s nothing sour here: just a pure sweet scent.

    Shop nowqvc.co/QPlusCrushMay-Lemon

    Vionic w/ Orthaheel Leather & Canvas Sandals - Tide Floral

    This picture does not do the adorable floral print on these Vionic Sandals any justice.  Floral print is so big this season, and these sandals are absolutely perfect.  In addition to the amazing print, these also offer fantastic support – which will keep you on your feet no matter how many backyard BBQs and amusement parks you hit up this summer.

    Shop now:qvc.co/QPlusCrushMay-Sandal

    LOGO by Lori Goldstein Regular Button Front Cardigan with Lace Trim

    Just because the weather is getting warmer, it doesn’t mean that a girl doesn’t need a nice cardigan every now and then.  Plus, it seems like in the summer every grocery store turns their AC up to “arctic blast”.  I mean, I get it – but that doesn’t mean I’m not freezing in the produce aisle. All of that aside, this LOGO cardigan is fantastic. It’s nice and lightweight (which is perfect for the Spring and Summer) and the lace detailing (sorry guys, not pictured) adds a fun, feminine flair to whatever you’re wearing.  Plus, that ‘Steel Blue’ color? Be “Steel” my heart! *

    [*I totally apologize for that pun. ]

    Shop nowqvc.co/QPlusCrushMay-Cardi


     

    Thanks for letting me gush about my QVC Plus Crushes for the month of May.  I’ll always try to keep you guys updated  on all of the amazing products we have here at the Q.  And  don’t forget – join us LIVE on QVC Plus every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday night for some great live programming and picks from our hosts!

    Until next week!

    -Tori, QVC Plus Blogger 


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    Hello, foodies…

    National Barbecue Month is rolling right along and we’re making our next recipe this Wednesday night onIn the Kitchen with David: Grilled Chicken Breast with Pico de Gallo.

    Here’s the written recipe for your convenience. If you’d like to print it, don’t forget you can do so easily by accessing it on my recipe page.

    Grilled Chicken Breast with Pico de Gallo
    Serves 4

    This recipe is prepared with the Cook's Essentials® 7-Piece BBQ Grill Pan with Removable Plates (K42351).

    Go to David's Recipe Item Page for the full list of items that David has used in his recipes.

    Ingredients:

    Pico de Gallo:

    • 4 ripe plum tomatoes, seeded and finely chopped
    • 1 small white onion, finely chopped
    • 1/2 cup loosely packed cilantro leaves, chopped
    • 1 jalapeno pepper, seeded and finely chopped
    • 1-1/2 Tbsp lime juice
    • 1/2 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp pepper

    Chicken:

    • 4 (5–6 oz) boneless, skinless chicken breasts
    • 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
    • 4 garlic cloves, minced
    • 1-1/4 tsp salt
    • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
    • Zest of 1 lemon

    Preparation:

    1. To prepare the pico de gallo, toss all the ingredients in a medium-size bowl until evenly combined. Place into an airtight container and refrigerate for at least 2 hours, or overnight.
    2. To prepare the chicken, place the breasts between 2 pieces of wax paper. Use a meat mallet to pound them to a 3/4" thickness.
    3. Place all the ingredients into a large zip-tight bag. Gently toss so the marinade evenly coats the chicken. Place in a bowl in the refrigerator and marinate at least 8 hours, or up to 12 hours.
    4. Preheat the grill to high. Place the chicken breasts onto the hot grill and cook for 4–5 minutes until char marks appear. Flip the chicken and cook until an instant-read thermometer inserted in the chicken reads 165°F, about 4–5 more minutes. Top each chicken breast with pico de gallo before serving.

    Grilled Chicken Breast with Pico de Gallo

    Horizontal grill marks are good enough for me, but if you’ve ever wondered how you get those fancy crosshatch grill marks, it’s a matter of rotating the meat. Position it at a 45-degree angle (think of it as 1:00 on a clock), sear, then turn it 90 degrees (back to about 11:00). Flip and repeat.

    Here’s my how to grill chicken video I mentioned above. Note that because the chicken in the recipe above is so thin, you can use high heat to cook it. Just be sure to follow the cooking times closely so you don’t overcook it.

    I’ll see you Wednesday at 8pm ET…we’ve got four big hours together, foodies, so hold onto your hats!

    Keep it flavorful!
    —David


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    Hello Fellow Denim Divas!!

    It’s starting to really heat up here, and during summer especially I am all about COMFORT! Summer is all about cute casual, and Denim and Company has some fabulous options for us this season. As always, we want to know what YOU think!! We’d love if you would vote in the poll below on which is YOUR favorite casual look?? Designer Gary picked one, and yours truly, our resident Denim Diva picked the other!! Can you tell which one was MY favorite??

    We'll reveal which gets the most votes, and WHICH of us picked it, the Designer or the Diva, in 2 weeks on Tuesday, May 26, during our 11am Denim and Co hour! Let your voice be heard!!

    Here are the details on each, along with a photo of me modeling each one! Check them out and cast your vote below. Can you guess who is describing which one???

    Choice #1:

    Denim & Company Perfect Jersey Sleeveless Drop Waist Dress(A265640)

    I love this dress because it is the perfect easy way to get ready. This is uncomplicated dressing at its best. Just add a jacket or a shrug and you have a total look. The drop waist styling is very flattering for all sizes and it is the perfect length for the hot weather ahead sure to keep you cool and breezy. This dress is truly versatile and can be worn for many different occasions either dressed up or more casual…even think of it as a beach dress.

    Fabrication is Cotton/Rayon/Spandex. It’s one of our  May “Must Haves” “The Summer Dress”.

    It comes in 5 colors, including the Warm Coral pictured.  It is an appropriate length for all sizes and all ages. So many dresses at retail are quite short these days!!

    Choice #2:

    Denim and Company Active Knit Dolman Cap Sleeve Tunic  (A265689)

    I love the “Active” inspired top/outfit because it is a comfortable very modern way of dressing. It’s all about the new casual lifestyle that is right for every age and size. This look/style automatically creates a youthful appearance. So, whether you are actually exercising, walking in the park or relaxing at home, you are sure to feel cool and easy and ready to start the day. You can also play with the top as a layering piece to go under shirts, jackets and sweaters.

    Fabrication is cotton/spandex and it is a flattering tunic length, perfect for those knit bottoms in your wardrobe, as well as woven twills and denims. Dolman sleeves are very comfortable and make that fresh fashion statement!  This one comes with three color choices.

    VOTE HERE!

     


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  • 05/12/15--06:02: My Trip to the Trade Show
  • As I finally get a chance to rest in my hotel room, I wanted to take a moment and chat with you about my day and the days to come. Dreams really do come true, if you hope and pray enough. This was my dream and here it is, unraveling and unfolding right before my eyes.

    I have always wanted to make this trip and share with you what Italy is like, the heart of Italy and what it means to me. From cobble stone streets to the crazy way the Romans drive. I wanted to show you the true heart of the people, the small towns and what really makes this country's heart beat. They are passionate about every thing: food, wine, cheese, leather, fashion and of course jewelry.

     

    Every where you look, there is an inspiration to be beautiful. The architect, the churches and even the flower filled window boxes, give way to creative thinking and artistry. It doesn't matter if it's in a big city like Rome, or a small town like where I am from. The music of life and love, sings through it all. There is a friendly smile shared by strangers on every corner. Vespas whizzing by and children eating gelato, while the older folks exchange life long stories with each other over a cup of cappuccino.

    Life is slower here, they drink it in like a fine wine. Romance and love is set before you on every door step and the promise of a beautiful day lingers with every breath you take. It is these things that inspire all the beautiful things we get from the Italians and I want to share them all with you.

    Today we landed in Rome and stopped in some local towns to chat with people and enjoy a cup of coffee. I would express both as being warm and friendly, inviting and soothing. Tomorrow I will get to go to the trade show (I'm going to lose my mind, looking at all of that jewelry!! LOL). David Markstein and I will pick out some pieces for the big event in June, so fingers crossed that I can stay focused long enough to pick something that you will like!! I don't want to let you down, so I promise to do my best for you. I'm really excited to see what is new!

    The culture, the people and the whole country prides itself on their jewelry. So many times, the most sought after pieces come from these small towns we are visiting, made by families that have passed down through the generations, their wisdom, technique and true passion for creating these pieces of jewelry.

    I also got to meet one of the Italian show Hosts, Sara. She is absolutely delightful and we might get to do some presentations together during the big June show. I'm soooo excited and I'm sooooo nervous and I'm a little scared. Sheesh.

    Most importantly, I just wanted to show you Italy through my eyes, I wanted to show you my Italy. I was made in Italy and born in the USA. I love both countries. I have so much pride saying that I am the first born American Citizen in my whole family and so much love to share with you, that I was raised with, in my big Italian family. The food, the love, the honesty and the way of life is just a little bit of what I hope to reach out to you with, on this trip. 
    Xo

    A

     


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    Who would have thought that 30 years ago, working aside my father all night long in his small flower shop, would bring me to announcing my first QVC TSV?!  Not me! I am thrilled to be presenting theBarbara King Home and Garden Bloom Mat on Memorial Day at midnight! Talk about a “memorable” event for me – and hopefully for everyone that loves stylish outdoor living like I do!

    The Bloom Mat has taken well over a year to perfect to become the product I am proud of and love. With the design in mind, I began with my favorite flower - the peony - and then worked and re-worked it into colors (Moss, Poppy and Espresso) and style I know everyone will love. Now, we all can enjoy the beauty of peonies for entire seasons over and over again!

    After so many people told me they loved my folding mats, but wanted something more, I had these Bloom Mats woven on over-sized looms. By using this system, this mat has virtually no creases or folds. All you have to do is unfurl it and your patio, garage or lawn gets immediate gratification. These beautiful mats ground your entire outdoor room in an instant and you will have so much fun styling your space any way you want it – dining, sitting, living area…Take a sneak peek at a few spaces we created. See how charismatic each is and how many designer-showroom spaces you can create simply from beginning with this great mat as your base. I have to pinch myself when I think of how I am now sharing wonderful products like this with the entire QVC family from around the United States!

    Now you might not be as excited as I am (like a new mom!) right now, BUT I guarantee that when you see this wonderful Bloom Mat and how you can create your very own perfect outdoor space you will feel elated too!


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