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Another year is starting and another one has ended. It is time to reflect on our past and make new hopes for the future. Some of us will make resolutions and others will just keep on doing what we are doing. Whatever it is that you decide to do, I hope that 2008 will be filled with good health, prosperity, love, and new horizons. I have been busy working on an assignment for a writing course and my blog has suffered. I have not written anything substantial in quite a bit. Stay tuned, however because, I have set a goal to write more short articles on my blog. Thank you to all who have visited and come back for more. I am thrilled to know that I have had almost 7000 hits. Even though to some that is nothing, to me it means a lot.

Happy New Year and keep on coming back in 2008.

Thirteen Things about MARIBETH
Happy Thanksgiving

I have stated before that I am a chocoholic. I loooooooove chocolate, milk chocolate, dark chocolate and occasionally white chocolate. This Thursday I have decided to list 13 foods that taste great covered in chocolate.

1…Chocolate covered nuts-Yum, my favorite- love them all, cashews and hazelnuts are especially good dipped in chocolate

2…Raisins. A movie must-raisinettes

3…Chocolate covered Crackers- Awesome! The Candy Kitchen Shops at the beach sell these delicious treats

4…Strawberries- A favorite treat of mine is chocolate covered strawberries with a glass of red wine.

5…Potato Chips- The first time I saw these I thought, “how disgusting”, but then I tried one. There is something about the combination of salt and chocolate that make them addicting. Probably the only time I would be tempted to eat a whole back of chips would be if they were chocolate covered.

6…Oreo Cookies-Great for parties and easy to make-dip oreos in melted chocolate and voila you have a yummy dessert

7…Ritz Cracker with Peanut Butter-Another great treat to bring to a party. Spread Peanut butter atop a Ritz cracker cover with another and dip in chocolate. If you love chocolate and peanut butter together these are for you.

8…Pretzels-Who doesn’t like chocolate covered pretzels? This also makes a great addition to a gift. Dip Pretzel rods in chocolate, roll in sprinkles, put in a crinkled plastic bag and use a ribbon to tie shut. Looks very creative but doesn’t take too much time.

9…Apples-I love the gourmet chocolate covered apples. My favorites are the ones that are covered in chocolate and peanuts, so fattening but worth the calories.

10…Coconut-Mmm Mmm Mmm-Emeril has a great recipe for chocolate covered coconut balls. They are fairly easy to make and taste just like almond joys.

11…Toffee-Score Bars and Heath bars are two of my favorite candy bars.

12…Cherries- I didn’t like these so much at a younger age but I think they have grown on me.

13…Popcorn-The best! Again, it is something about the salt and chocolate that makes this so tasteful.

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The holidays are quickly approaching. For kids it is the best time of year. For Parents it could be the most stressful. We celebrate Christmas in my household. Having three children to buy for can quickly become costly. Especially now that the two oldest are old enough to realize what things are. For example, an IPod is different from an MP3 player and much more expensive therefore it’s the requested present. I have always taught my children to appreciate every thing they receive whether small or large and explained there are many children that are not as fortunate. However, to me this is a fine line.I still want Christmas to be magical for them. I want to watch as they rip open presents they asked Santa for and marvel in their delight. I found a great little site on the internet that helps this become a little bit easier. I thought I would pass it along to any parent who has not yet discovered it. If you are anything like myself then you know what it means to be on a budget and still have to worry about making Christmas special. The site I’m speaking about is Bill Me Later. It’s a convenient way to buy gifts and you won’t be responsible for paying for them until later. Hundreds of stores participate with Bill Me Later and each carries its own regulations. Why do I love this? Because of it’s timing. By the time the bill is due we are receiving our income tax check. Perfect! I found a loophole. I know many of you out there have Christmas Clubs for this very reason and I eventually plan to open one of them too. For now, I will be happy to use Bill Me Later. Consider it my Holiday Tip for you. There is a catch, you must discipline yourself. You have to pay it off with your income tax check or otherwise it will be another bill hanging over your head.  So for all of you out there racking your brains, trying to figure out how you are going to buy presents,hop on over to a Bill Me Later site and see if it interests you. If you are financially secure and the Holidays do not deplete your wallet then good for you. Hopefully, one day I will get there. For now, I’ll keep looking for the loopholes.