So excited for this afternoon’s Fox 29 interview! Thursday, Sep 23 2010 

Props are ready, GPS is set in the car, and I am ready to head downtown to Fox 29 Philadelphia’s studios! Everyone there has been so fantastic setting this up, and I can’t wait to meet everyone in person! (Ooh, and I HAVE to remember my camera!!)

Keep an eye out for the segment live around 5:45P, where we’ll discuss saving BIG money on food budgets, clothing expenditures, even transportation!

For those who emailed me looking for the links to my upcoming “Brilliant Frugal Living” workshops, here they are!

Thurs, September 30, 7:00P-9:00P, for Chester County Night School, location is at Stetson Middle School in West Chester, PA.
Register for the seminar here!

Saturday, October 9, 1:00P-3:00P, for Main Line School Night, location is at the Creutzberg Center in Radnor, PA
Register for the seminar here!

Sunday, October 24, 12:00P-2:00P, for Serenity Spa, location is at their beautiful studios in Red Hill, PA
Register for the seminar here!

Sneak Preview – Mary Talks Money segment! Tuesday, Sep 21 2010 

Sneak preview of a new Mary Talks Money segment! This one features my favorite supermarket on the planet, B&B’s Grocery Outlet in Morgantown, PA! I had so much fun and they were so great about us coming in with cameras! Many thanks to MTM’s fantastic host, Mary Daigle Caraccioli for this amazing opportunity. This segment will air several times nationwide in a few weeks!

Click here to see a sneak preview!

I love New York! Thursday, Aug 19 2010 

Click here for a link to Channel 12 New York!
Click here for a link to Jimmy Choo shoes!

Hey gang! I’m looking so forward to next week’s interview with Alicia Vitarelli for her “Buck Wild” segment on August 25th!

I ran into the local Goodwill in Morgantown (I know, you’re shocked), hoping to find another prop or two for the story, and lo and behold, there they were! Jimmy Choo shoes, ADORABLE ankle high boots with 3.5″ heels, denim with silver studs, made in London, size 37 1/2. Size Wha? Damn European measurements. Tried it on, and yokay, FYI time: 37 1/2 is MUCH smaller than a USA ladies size 10. HOWEVER, they were $2, so of course they came home with me anyway. Found out at home (courtesy of Google) that 37 1/2 translates roughly into a size 7 USA. Could make a fabulous Xmas present for someone I know with much smaller feet than me…. hmmmmm…

“Mary Talks Money” piece airs tonight: Saving on Baby! Wednesday, May 19 2010 

Good afternoon, fellow frugalistas!

A great opportunity to work again with the Live Well HD / 6-ABC crew for another “Mary Talks Money” went beautifully, and the first nationwide airing is tonight at 8:30P. The best part is an extraordinarily handsome 2-year old I adore running thru just about every shot. Camera shy? Not so much! 🙂 He ran thru so many shots they found a way to beautifully incorporate him into the piece!

Thanks again to Executive Producer Susan Barclay & cameraman Sean Bernard for their amazing work! If I did this right, a sneak preview copy should be at this link. (if clicking it doesn’t work, yes I’m pathetic. just cut & paste!)

Next “69 News at Sunrise” segment set for June 29! Wednesday, May 19 2010 

Hey fellow frugalites! Hope your week is going great!

Here in the deep frugalsphere, I just lucked out with another “Brilliant Frugal Living” gig on “69 News at Sunrise”! Looks like we’re going with Tuesday, June 29, for a “Fabulous, Frugal 4th of July Celebration!” I’m thinking of focusing on fantastic get-togethers with all the trimmings – saw lots of perfect decor at the dollar store. Then, for the second segment, I think I’ll incorporate some food ideas that won’t break the bank. ANYTHING to get my hands on that gorgeous studio kitchen again! 🙂

If you’ve got ideas that’ll fit into this theme, send them my way! Would LOVE to hear them!

Absolutely can not wait! Eve, Jaciel – thanks a million!

“Better Philly” update! Thursday, May 6 2010 

The Brilliant Frugal Living piece, originally set to air tomorrow, will now air 8:00AM on Wednesday, May 12 instead. Great stuff! Thanks again to Renai Ellison & Bob Seiberlich for the opportunity to be on their great show!!

Fantastic time at WFMZ Channel 69! Thursday, May 6 2010 

I had a fantastic time on “69 News at Sunrise” yesterday, doing the “Julie & Julia” themed Mother’s Day! Today’s cooking segment I hereby rename “Bigfoot Contessa”, as I ADORED sashaying around on that GORGEOUS kitchen set in my size 10 heels!

Many thanks to news anchors Eve Tannery & Jaciel Cordoba, as well as the entire crew, who helped me tremendously polishing off the Boeuf Bouguignon & Reine de Saba! Special thanks to John for yet again helping me haul in all of my mountains of STUFF – yes, I know it was ridiculous. Again.

Looking forward to our next segment in about a month – can’t wait! Here’s the link to today’s segments!

A “Julie & Julia” themed Mother’s Day celebration! Tuesday, May 4 2010 

Hello all! Is this weather gorgeous lately or what? I could so get used to this!

Headed out to Channel 69 on Wednesday to do a really fun piece on “Themed” Mother’s Day events. We’re going with a “Julie & Julia” Mother’s Day this year, based upon the fantastic book & movie of the same name. Every, single mother I know adores (1) Meryl Streep, (2) Julia Child, (3) Amy Adams, (4) Julie Powell, the real-life cubicle worker who found blog superstardom by cooking her way thru JC’s “Mastering The Art of French Cooking” over one year’s time. With all of these themes in play, it seemed reasonable that no matter who the special “Mom” is in your life, they would adore a “Julie & Julia” themed day on Mother’s Day!

This was a BLAST to put together, here’s what we came up with!

* A copy of the book “Julie & Julia” which I found at Goodwill in outstanding condition for $1.97
* A copy of Mastering The Art of French Cooking, which, fabulously, is an exact match of one in the movie, purchased at yard sale for $1.
* You can’t do anything “Julia Child”ish without the pearls! A real strand costs hundreds, if not thousands, and then you’re terrified to leave the house with them… However, a lovely, luminescent strand of “Julia” pearls found for $2 at Goodwill is perfect.
* A special repeat screening of our tribute movie! Julie & Julia movie night, courtesy of the local library – $1.50
TOTAL: Approx $8

And BEST of all, a Julia Child dinner, straight from the pages of “Mastering The Art of French Cooking!”
Boeuf Bourguignon ingredients (serves 6)
6 ounces bacon
3 pounds lean stewing beef
One sliced carrot
18-24 baby onions (canned is fine)
1 tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper
2 tbsp flour
3 cups red wine – (can also use stock, if preferred)
2-3 cups brown beef stock (we used 6 cups beef stock)
1 tbsp tomato paste
2 cloves mashed garlic / minced
1 tsp thyme
One bay leaf
18-24 small white onions, canned
1 lb quartered mushrooms, sautéed in 2 tbsp butter & 1 tbsp oil

Cut the bacon into ¼” to ½” pieces.
Saute the bacon in the oil over moderate heat for 2-3 minutes to brown lightly. Remove to a side dish with slotted spoon. Reheat the oil until fat is almost smoking before you saute the beef.

Dry the beef in paper towels; it will not brown if it is damp. Lightly sprinkle it with flour, and saute it, a few pieces at a time, in the hot oil and bacon fat until nicely browned on all sides. Add it to the bacon in the stew pot.

In the same fat, brown the sliced vegetables, and add to the stew pot, along with (drained) canned onions and sauteed mushrooms.

Stir in the beef stock (or combination of beef stock & red wine, if preferred) so that the meat is barely covered. Add the tomato paste, garlic, herbs. Bring to simmer on top of the stove. Regulate heat so liquid simmers very slowly for 3 to 4 hours. The meat is done when a fork pierces it easily.

FOR IMMEDIATE SERVING: Cover the casserole and simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, basting the meat and vegetables with the sauce several times. Serve in its casserole, or arrange the stew on a platter surrounded with potatoes, noodles, or rice, and decorated with parsley.

FOR LATER SERVING: When cold, cover and refrigerate. About 15-20 minutes before serving, bring to the simmer, cover, and simmer very slowly for 10 minutes, occasionally basting the meat and vegetables with the sauce.

TOTAL COST: $12.16 for Boeuf Bourguignon for 6 people

Reine De Saba – Chocolate and Almond Cake
4 ounces semi-sweet chocolate melted with 2 TB rum or coffee (we use coffee) — $1.00
1 stick softened butter — .50
2/3 cup granulated sugar .25
3 egg yolks – .15
3 egg whites – .15
Pinch of salt .01
1 tbsp granulated sugar .03
1/3 cup pulverized almonds .25
¼ tsp almond extract .05
¾ sifted cake flour .10
TOTAL FOR CAKE AND ICING/ALMONDS (BELOW) = $3.19 (KLH NOTE: If you’d care to dazzle Mom with the actual Julia Child recipe, be our guest! However, boxed cake mixes have come an extraordinarily long way in the 50 years since “MAFC” came out, and can easily be substituted for FAR greater ease

Butter & flour an 8” cake pan (one that’s at least 1 ½ inches deep)
Melt the chocolate over almost simmering water (KLH note: you can also carefully do this in the microwave in a microwave-safe dish)

Cream the butter & 2/3 cup granulated sugar together for several minutes until they form a pale yellow, fluffy mixture.
Beat in the egg yolks until well blended.
In a separate bowl, beat the egg whites and salt in a separate bowl until soft peaks are formed: sprinkle on the sugar and beat until stiff peaks are formed.

With a rubber spatula, blend the melted chocolate into the butter and sugar mixture, then stir in the almonds, and almond extract. Immediately stir in one fourth of the beaten egg whites to lighten the batter. Delicately fold in a third of the remaining whites and when partially blended, sift on one third of the flour and continue folding. Alternate rapidly with more egg whites and more flour until all egg whites and flour are incorporated.

Turn the batter into the cake pan, pushing the batter up to its rim with a rubber spatula. Bake in middle level of preheated oven for about 25 minutes. Cake is done when it has puffed, and 2 ½ to 3 inches around the circumference are set so that a needle plunged into that area comes out clean; the center should move slightly if the pan is shaken, and a needle comes out oily.

Allow cake to cool in the pan for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge of the pan, and reverse cake on the rack. Allow it to cool for an hour or two; it must be thoroughly cold if it is to be iced.

Glacage Au Chocolat – Chocolate Butter Icing
2 ounce (2 squares) semi sweet baking chocolate .25
2 TBSP rum or coffee (we use coffee) .01
6 TB unsalted butter – .19
Surrounded with crushed almonds = .25

Stir the chocolate and run or coffee in the saucepan over the hot water until chocolate has melted into a very smooth cream. Remove saucepan from hot water, and beat the butter into the chocolate, a tablespoon at a time. Then beat over cold water until chocolate mixture is cool and of spreading consistency. At once spread it over your cake with the spatula or knife.

Using the above as a guide, you can show the wonderful Moms in your life (your Mom, Mother in Law, Grandmother, Godmother, etc), just how fabulous and appreciated she is with this terrific, themed Mother’s Day. And hey, when it comes to a gift that keeps on giving, there’s nothing like a Julia Child-inspired celebration to inspire some serious bragging rights for Mom for weeks to come!

Best of all, you’ve spent no more than $25 for gifts AND dinner for six! THAT’S SOME BRILLIANT FRUGAL LIVING!

BFL Segment on Channel 17 “Better Philly”! Tuesday, Apr 27 2010 

Hey gang! Just found out that the Brilliant Frugal Living segment on Channel 17’s “Better Philly” is going to air on Friday, May 7th! So excited! Thanks again to Renai Ellison for making this great experience so much fun!

This was actually an amazing learning experience above & beyond some past tapings, as I got to learn first hand how Executive Producer Bob Seiderlich made one camera work like 5 as we took take after take (after take) from various angles. No doubt he’ll make the beautiful finished product look effortless. Thanks again to the entire crew for this great experience!

Another “Mary Talks Money” episode wrapped up! Thursday, Apr 22 2010 

Had SO much fun with the Live Well HD crew back on the 15th – fabulous time! I think they got some great sound clips for their “Saving On Baby” segment. Many thanks to Executive Producer Susan Barclay for this opportunity, and THANKS to cameraman extraordinaire Sean Bernard for working with not only a cluttered playroom but also two little ones who “just want to see the cool camera ONE more time…”.

Not sure when this episode will air; if it’s anything like the last one, we should have about 18 nationwide airings over the course of June. SO excited!

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