Product Reviews

Written By: carolmoye - Oct• 09•15

I don’t usually do this, but there are three things I purchased recently that I absolutely love, and I just had to share. If you are interested in any of these, you can click on the photo or the purchase links at the bottom of my post.

The first thing is the new 5th Generation Amazon Fire.
It really surprised me; not so much that I like it, but just how amazing it is at that low price. I needed a new tablet. My husband has watched me getting cranky as my four-year old ASUS Transformer tablet freezes. Let me make it clear, it’s not that the tablet doesn’t work, or that I don’t love it, but it’s just four years old. New apps are much bigger and it has trouble keeping up. I have a Kindle Touch, which I received as a replacement for my broken regular Kindle. I am NOT a fan of the Kindle Touch. They have likely improved it since this version, but that being said, I was itching to move up, but didn’t want to spend $100 or more to replace it yet.

I spoke out loud that Amazon had a new Fire tablet for $49 and my husband told me to buy it with his credit card. I was a bit skeptical that it could fill my needs at that price, but I seized the moment and bought it. What woman in her sound mind would refuse such an offer? When I submitted the order, they said I wouldn’t get it until Oct. 28. It arrived on Oct. 5th. HAPPY!!! It does everything I need it to, and more. I can’t even imagine what I’m missing out on. It’s just the right size for easy transport. It’s fast. There are tons of free apps, and the popular games with in-app purchases are also available (Candy Crush, Words With Friends, etc., ). It comes with a free six month subscription to the Washington Post, and some pretty cool magazines. For me, it was the perfect, affordable solution. I couldn’t be happier (unless my husband lets me go clothes shopping with his credit card :)

The next two things go together and are the perfect solution to my camera issue. I have difficulty carrying things that are heavy. I shoot with a Nikon D90 camera, and generally carry two or three lenses with me when I am shooting. My “real” camera bag is too heavy. My camera backpack that is small and lightweight is not supportive enough, which led to my breaking the LCD screen on my camera and a UV protective filter that was on my smallest lens. I also bent my hot shoe. I decided it was time to protect my equipment and my shoulder. My solution: A camera bag insert and a very lightweight sling bag.

The bag insert is a Ciesta Flexible Camera Insert Partition.

The Sling Bag is the Port Authority BG112 Sling Pack.

Camera sling bags tend to be bulky and expensive. The combination of the camera partition and this sling bag is exactly what I needed. The camera partition is strong, waterproof and supportive. It fits snugly in the bag, and sometimes I just carry it by itself. The sling bag has plenty of room for my other things, so I don’t need my purse when I go out shooting, and the price is perfect. I’m very happy with both of these. No more broken equipment, and my shoulder is very happy. Grand total, about $56.

Here are the purchase links:

Butterfly Border

Wordless Wednesday-Garfield Murals

Written By: carolmoye - Oct• 07•15

Spak Brothers Restaurant Mural

Mural with glass blowers on Pittsburgh Glass Center

Mural about youth violence

Mural of Bride entering a house on Penn Avenue, Garfield, Pittsburgh, PA

Wordless Wednesday-More Uptown Murals

Written By: carolmoye - Sep• 30•15

Pittsburgh Penguins Mural

Mural with Gecko and Fireflies

Wordless Wednesday

Written By: carolmoye - Sep• 23•15

It has become plain to me that the pathway to progress in Pittsburgh is causing the early death of some wonderful murals. I have decided to attempt to photograph all the murals that I come across for the next few weeks. Today’s group was actually shot last Wednesday. They are from an area of Pittsburgh known as Uptown, on a Street named Gist. It’s a very small street, with some wildly creative residents.

Dogs and Hydrant

Mural with Bass Player and Zebra

Mural of Family Dining Together

Jeweled Frog

Musical Mural

Framed Portrait Mural

Cut-Outs of Women from early 20th Century

King-Kong over doors with Marily Monroe on a banana

Butterfly Border

Wordless Wednesday

Written By: carolmoye - Sep• 16•15

Stylized Anemone

Mamarazzi Promo Post and Character Interview

Written By: carolmoye - Sep• 15•15

I was given a preview copy of Mamarazzi to read in preparation for the character interview. As with her previous books, Brooke did a wonderful job of creating delightfully fallible characters, often with secrets that can destroy their newfound happiness. I don’t want to give away anything here, so I will not say much more other than that I strongly recommend this book for someone who is looking for a light entertaining romance.

 dividing line

Note: This interview is in two parts. The first part of the interview took place before events of the book occurred. The last three questions were from the second interview, held after the story ended.

Meet Danica:

Hi, my name is Danica and my story is featured in the novel “Mamarazzi.” Thanks for having me today and I hope you’ll go easy on me. What do you want to know? I’m literally an open book, if you read “Mamarazzi.” Haha!

What’s your favorite part of the day? Morning, afternoon or night?

I have to pick just one? As far as my job goes, night is best. It’s hard to take pictures after dark, but the good shots are always available with night as a veil. Personally, though, morning is best. The day is fresh and anything can happen.

If you had to take anyone with you on a long journey away from home, who would it be?

My mom. She’s been there for me all of my life and continues to be a support no matter what I do. Time with her is precious because as I get older, I understand days are fleeting. Hers are limited and I want to make sure I get as much as I can in with her.

What is your motto in life?

Grab every opportunity you can, when you can. You never know when something else might roll around. It’s easy to make mistakes when you grasp anything that whizzes by, but if you don’t get on the train when it comes, you’ll never know where it ends up.

Name one of your weaknesses that you’d like to work on.

Well, I have plenty, but I’d say my profession is my biggest weakness. I’m a photographer by trade and I really want to get into the professional photography business. But breaking into that world is really tough and I’ve fallen into taking, you could say, not so flattering pictures of celebrities. I want to quit, but I need the money to keep myself and my mother afloat.

If you were able to invent something totally new for your world, what would it be, and why do you think it’s needed?

I’d invent a machine that allows people to glimpse a snippet of their future. I wouldn’t want to see too much and ruin the element of surprise. But if I knew a few things about my future, I’d know better how to conduct things today.

Give a memory from childhood.

I remember spending endless hours in Nebraska cornfields. Sounds boring, right? My mother took me to a variety of landscapes around the state so she could shoot the fields at sunset or at other times of the day. While she took pictures and tested the light, I was left to entertain myself. It’s amazing what a kid can come up with in an empty field! Those were some of my fondest memories of growing up.

Are you similar to how you were as a child or have you changed significantly? If you’ve changed, what changed you?

I think my sense of wonder is a bit jaded now that I’m an adult. When I was a child, I didn’t realize how much adults struggle at times to make things meet. I still have my childlike belief that if you try hard enough, you can succeed. But I also know how hard success can be to achieve.

What is the most sacrificial thing you’ve done for someone else?

I care for my mother. She’s too young, but she has Alzheimer’s and it’s advancing fast. Though she lives back in Nebraska and I live in Hollywood, I pay for her care and all of her needs. I wish I could see her more than I do. It kills me to be this far away, but it’s also hard when I visit and she doesn’t know me. I don’t see her care as a sacrifice, really, though. She’s my mom and she’s done so much for me, I owe her way more than I can ever do in return.

Cat or dog person?

I love animals in general. I don’t have pets myself, but I grew up in a rural area and there were plenty of every kind. I look forward to the day when I am more settled and have regular hours so I can have some of each!

It was pretty amazing that you got the extra spot on Cousins. Did you think they would figure out that you didn’t belong before the day ended?

Totally. I was in no way shape or form an actress and I had no aspirations of moving into that world. Every breath I took, I was just waiting for someone to call me out. I figured they could tell just by my shifty eyes that I didn’t belong. I didn’t even know what to do with my hands. I still can’t believe I made it through that taping. And then many more after that…whew!

Were you afraid that your agent would open the package before you left her office and discover that the photos were not what she was expecting?

….absolutely terrified. It was a huge bluff and risk, but it paid off. I couldn’t expose Gage to shield myself and I certainly didn’t want to be outed at that time. I hedged my bets and kept every toe on my foot crossed. I still can’t believe a shrewd woman like Stana Saunders didn’t check the merchandise before signing!

Have you had any contact with your cousin since the Emmy show?

Yes, a little here and there. I think she, like the rest of Hollywood, is mostly indifferent to me, but we’ve had a few small family reunions and she showed up without all her stage makeup. It was like being with the old Veronica instead of the famous Vesper, and I enjoyed it greatly. I don’t know if our relationship will ever completely get over all it’s been through, but it’s nice to know I still have family out there. Vesper is doing well. She’s had some small roles in big movies and she’s starting to shine again.

dividing line


Mamarazzi Release Promo Post



By Brooke Williams

Release Date: September 11, 2015 from Prism Book Group

 photo MAMARAZZI20COVER_zpsw7ys2qdo.jpg

Order HERE

Join the Sept. 15th Release Day Party on Facebook HERE

Enjoy giveaways with a dozen different authors!


Danica Bennett isn’t sure what she hates more…her job or the fact that she’s good at it.  As one of the many Hollywood paparazzi, she lives her life incognito and sneaks around trying to get the best shot of the latest star.  When she is mistaken for an extra on a new, up and coming TV show, her own star rises and she becomes the one being photographed.  Add that to the fact that she’s falling for her co-star, Eliot Lane, and Danica is in a whole heap of trouble.


Add “Mamarazzi” to your Goodreads list HERE



About the Author


 photo af04ff45-571c-4445-a2cf-10a420f1580d_zps5c6e8e10.jpg


Brooke Williams writes in a sleep-deprived state while her daughters nap. Her romantic comedy is best read in the same state. Brooke has twelve years of radio in her background, both behind the scenes and on the air. She was also a television traffic reporter for a short time despite the fact that she could care less about hair and make-up. Today, Brooke stays at home with her daughters and works as a freelance writer for a variety of companies. When she isn’t working for paying clients, she makes things up, which results in books like “Accept this Dandelion.”  Brooke is also the author of “Accept this Dandelion,” “Wrong Place, Right Time,” “Someone Always Loved You,”  “Beyond the Bars.” She looks forward to her first children’s book release “Baby Sheep Gets a Haircut” in June 2016. Brooke and her husband Sean have been married since 2002 and have two beautiful daughters, Kaelyn (6) and Sadie (2).


Connect with Brooke:





Note from the Author on the book’s inspiration:

I’ve always been fascinated by the Hollywood life and the idea that “they” are different from “us.” The idea for Mamarazzi has been with me for a long time. I’m not even exactly sure when I came up with it, but in college, I had a screenwriting class and I had to write a portion of a screenplay. I wrote “Paparazzi,” which was the same general idea only with a male lead character. When I began writing romantic comedy, the idea came back to me and I decided to chance the main character to a female and call it “Mamarazzi.” I even had a naming contest so that facebook fans and blog readers could name the characters in the book. Every character in the novel is reader named and approved! Overall, I wanted to examine what happens when you take someone from one side of the fence and plop them on the other side. In the end, famous or not, we’re all just people. And in this book, they all have secrets…

 photo 135796a2-6f1c-4362-895e-362ef2674703_zpssky25oos.jpg

And next from Brooke Williams….


“Dandelions on the Road”

releases November 5, 2015…

pre-order today by clicking below

Dandelions on the Road (Dandelion Series Book 2)

 photo DandelionsOnTheRoadFrontCover_zps5e6ktfp1.jpg


Wordless Wednesday

Written By: carolmoye - Sep• 09•15

Book Review-Part 2: Simple Recipes for Easy Homemade Face Scrubs and Body Exfoliants

Written By: carolmoye - Sep• 05•15

The author of Simple Recipes for Easy Homemade Face Scrubs and Body Exfoliants (All Natural Cosmetics Book 3) (Vesela Tabakova) has granted me permission to share a few of her recipes.

This is one I made a couple of days ago and LOVED it!

Lemon Body Scrub:

1/2 cup sugar
4 tbsp almond oil
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp lemon zest
1-2 drops Lemon Essential Oil

Mix all ingredients and apply the mixture to damp skin. Gently exfoliate in small, circular motions. Rinse with warm water and pat dry.

Since I have been using her scrubs, and only natural ingredients on my face, my skin looks much softer and I have a natural glow. I even have less blemishes. Each morning, I am excited to try a new one. Today I will try this one because I have a banana that needs to be used right away:

Banana Sensitive Skin Scrub:

1/2 banana, mashed
1 tbsp oatmeal

Mash half banana with a fork and mix it with the oatmeal. Gently massage onto skin for a minute, then rinse off.

And the one I intend to make for tomorrow morning’s shower:

Simple Coconut Body Scrub:


1 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup coconut oil
1/2 tsp vanilla extract

Mix half a cup of coconut oil with one cup of brown sugar. Add a tsp of vanilla extract. Apply the mixture to damp skin. Gently exfoliate in small, circular motions. Rinse with warm water.


That’s all you get for free. If you like these, please purchase the book. It’s only $2.99, and worth every penny.

Butterfly Border

Book Review: Unexpected Gifts

Written By: carolmoye - Sep• 04•15

I was gifted a copy of Unexpected Giftsby the author after I read and loved Sewing Can Be Dangerous and Other Small Threads. She thought I would love it because I love historical fiction. She was totally right. I LOVED it! I was totally amazed with how much history she managed to fit into the lives of her characters and their ancestors. This should be required reading for a US History class, or at least an extra credit assignment. She covers the Vietnam War, Woodstock, The Great Depression, and SO much more. If you love historical fiction, this is one you should definitely add to your list.

Here are the purchase links for both books:





dividing line

Wordless Wednesday

Written By: carolmoye - Sep• 02•15

And this is why we need it to rain…. a waterfall with almost no water.



Butterfly Border