"I cannot live without books: but fewer will suffice where amusement, and not use, is the only future object." -- Thomas Jefferson

Sunday, April 28, 2019

Toast Topping: Sauteed Bell Peppers, Mushrooms, and Cream Cheese

Toast Topping: Sauteed Bell Peppers, Mushrooms, and Cream Cheese


Olive Oil
1-2 Slices of Integral Bread
3-4 TBspns Bell pepper slices (Fresh or Frozen)
3-4 TBspns Mushroom pieces, canned, drained
1-2 TBspns Rice Vinegar
1-2 TBspns Cream cheese
Ground black pepper


Toast the bread slices and set aside.

Add a dollop of olive oil to skillet.
Add Bell pepper slices.
Season with a few grinds of ground black pepper.
Cook on low to medium heat.
Stir peppers in skillet as they cook.
Cook until soft and slightly brown.
Remove from skillet and reserve.

Add another dollop of olive oil to skillet.
Add mushrooms.
Add vinegar.
Season with a few grinds of ground black pepper.
Cook on low to medium heat.
Stir mushrooms as they cook.
Cook until softer and a bit brown.
Remove from skill and reserve.

Place toast on plate.
Spread a full TBspon of cream cheese over toast.
Top with 1-2 spoonfuls of bell peppers.
Top with 1-2 spoonfuls of mushrooms.
Season with a bit of ground pepper.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Self-Publishing Options Part 1

In my post, Do You Want to Publish an eBook?", I delineate many of the choices and tasks that a writer faces when choosing to self-publish.

Here, I list some reputable sources for making similar choices.

Jane Friedman

Self-Publishing Review

Saturday, April 13, 2019

I Have Fallen in Love.....With Pink Mocktails!!!

I Have Fallen in Love.....With Pink Mocktails!

It all started with Neelix's Star Trek Cookbook.

When I went shopping for the ingredients for the Calaman Sherry ST Mocktail, I discovered there were lots of pink beverages.

So, I bought several of them:

Guayaba Juice
Cranberry Juice
Pink Grapefruit Juice
Pink Grapefruit Soda
Passion Fruit Juice
Pink Lemonade
Jamaica Concentrate
and more...

Then, I started making variations of a "Pink Mocktail."

Ginger Ale/Jamaica Mocktail


6 oz Ginger Ale
2 capfuls Jamaica juice concentrate
Ice cubes

Garnish: Lime Slice


In a glass, add Ginger ale and Jamaica juice, mix together.
Add ice cubes.
Add Garnish.

Quick Ersatz Rose Champagne


5 oz Club Soda*, cold
2 oz Ginger ale, cold
1 oz Grape juice or Cranberry juice, cold


In an 8oz glass, add Club Soda, Ginger Ale, Grape or Cranberry juice. Mix together.

If your juices are not cold. Add crushed ice to a commuter mug with a lid. Add the liquids. Close lid. Shake. Wait. Strain into a glass.

Gingery Pink Grapefruit Mocktail


5 oz Pink grapefruit juice
2 oz Ginger Ale
2/3 capful lime juice concentrate
1/4 Tspn ginger paste
Ice Cubes
Garnish: Lime slice


In an 8 oz glass add Pink Grapefruit juice, Ginger Ale, lime juice concentrate, and ginger paste. Mix thoroughly.
Add ice cubes.
Add garnish.

Quick Faux Paloma


2/3 Pink grapefruit soda
1/3 sparkling mineral water*
1/2 capful Lime juice
Ice cubes
Garnish: Slice of Lime


Add liquids to a 8 oz glass, stir together.
Add ice cubes.
Add garnish.

Guayaba Ginger Pink Mocktail


4oz Seltzer water*
2oz Guayaba Soda
2oz Ginger Ale
1/8 Tspn Tea mix
Ice Cubes
Garnish: Lime slice


In an 10 oz glass, add Seltzer water, Guayaba Soda, Ginger Ale, tea mix, and Lime Juice concentrate. Stir well.
Add ice cubes.
Add garnish.

*You can use a variety of carbonated waters: Seltzer, Club Soda, Mineral water, carbonated, or Sparkling water.

Wednesday, April 10, 2019

Ria Stone Publications 2019

When I tallied the number of publications, I have submitted to various ePubishers or Print-on-Demand (POD) Publishers, I was surprised. To date, I have written or contributed to six publications.

Darn shame Blogger can not maintain the image quality.

DIY Pineapple Lassi

I enjoy Indian food but because I am not a good cook, I have yet to try and make an Indian recipe. But, I did make my own version of a Lassi. I made this recipe before doing any research because it came out fine for me. But, I see I barely come close to a true Lassi recipe. Maybe next time, I will try adding more spices.

DIY Pineapple Lassi


3 oz Yogurt, plain
3 oz Milk
A dollop (approximately 1 oz) or more of Pineapple juice (leftover from canned pineapples or regular juice), to suit your taste
Garnish: a dash of cinnamon powder (Optional)


Add ingredients to glass.
Add ice, if desired.
Add garnish.




Monday, April 8, 2019

Rosado Creamy Coconut Merida Mocktail

I am enjoying making "Pink Mocktails!"

Here is one.

Rosado Creamy Coconut Merida Mocktail
(Adapted from: https://www.mistressofmocktails.com/alice/)


Use a 8 oz glass
3 oz Coconut Cream
2 oz Sparkling water, cold
1 oz Ginger Ale, cold
1/2 - 1 Tspn Lime juice
3+ Tspns Jamaica concentrate
Ice cubes, if needed
Garnish: Lime slice


Basically, add all ingredients into glass except the Jamaica and ice cubes.
Stir ingredients gently in order to maintain the foamy head.
Add Jamaica to taste or to make it as pink as you like.
Add ice cubes, if necessary.
Stir gently again.
Take the lime slice and run it around the edge of the glass before placing it on the lip of the glass.

Friday, April 5, 2019

Sample Marketing Plan for Limited Budgets

Sample Marketing Plan for Limited Budgets

With a small staff, it would be easier to establish several static marketing projects.

Static Marketing Projects
Requires little maintenance.

• Take digital pictures of facilities and amenities.
• Create a blog page (a website requires more maintenance) — a blog page is usually free and can be static or dynamic. Include photos, logo and slogan. Emphasize strengths and unique features.
• Let customers know if you do or do not take credit cards.
• Develop a Press kit. (See below.)
• Create a flyer listing products, services and contact information for customers, for distribution at various locations, or use as advertisements.
• Create small text advertisements and submit to: Yucatán Today, Craig’s List Yucatán, TacoList, Vivanunicos, Expat Blog, and other online websites with free classifieds.
• Build an email list of customers and other interested persons who want updates on your business. Send email announcements of upcoming events, news, and specials.
• Send out email with any new pictures, prices changes, new reviews, etc.
• Encourage guests to blog about their visit on TripAdvisor, Lonely Planet or other online forums.
• Create and post a YouTube video.
• Create outdoor signage.
• Offer special promotions in the low season.
• Team up with local merchants or nearby businesses for joint events or shared advertising. Consider tie-in promotions.

Dynamic Marketing Projects
Requires effort, planning, maintenance, and money.

• Create a marketing calendar to plan various marketing strategies in advance.
• Interact on one or two social media like Twitter, Instragram etc., at least once a month.
• Social Media can include: a blog or website, Twitter, Instagram, TripAdvisor, Foursquare, Linkedin, Travellerspoint, Tumblir, Facebook, and Wayn, for example.
• Target audience websites like budget travelers’ forums, foodies, or sites with shared interests, for example.
• Respond to customers’ reviews, with thanks, and note any criticisms.
• Have press kits handy for media requests for information.
• Create and mail a direct promotional piece, usually tied to a special promotion.
• Get imprinted promotional items like magnets or memo pads, pens or others as handouts.
• Hold workshops, readings or other events that appeal to customers.
• Contact local cable TV stations or radio stations for an interview.
• Put paid advertisement in local travelers’ publications such as Yucatán Today, or Explore.
• Get a paid radio advertisements or interviews
• Create online or print newspaper ads or articles
• Create online or print magazine ads or articles
• Sponsor an ad for event publication
• Attend conventions, as a panelist or attendee
• Contract billboard advertising
• Contract a booking service.


• Collect information about area activities, events, restaurants, art galleries, and more.
• Use a mix of static and dynamic marketing options.
• Limit use of interactive social media that require regular maintenance.
• Start with free marketing strategies before spending money on other marketing options.
• Advertise opening and special events.

Spontaneous Writing - Trees

 Spontaneous writing is an exercise.

A person or a group writes for 5-10 minutes about a suggested word or image.


Gold, green, tall and wide, their branches are like roots in the sky. Watching birds fly through the leaves tells me there is another world in the trees.

Budding or falling leaves, the cycle of life and death mirrored in the shape of a leaf. Mythical layers of meaning are bound in the life of a tree.

These are some of the things I see in trees in a moment of time.

Skeletons against a winter sky, bright green and budding in Spring or fire red or muddy brown in Fall. The kaleidoscope of colors abound, always changing, always the same, the wonder of trees inspire and give joy.

Thursday, April 4, 2019

Toast Topping Combo - Mug O'Scrambled Egg and a Sardine

Alex Fergus is a riot.

I laugh as I read and reread Alex’s  51+ recipes for sardines (https://www.alexfergus.com/blog/51-sardine-recipes-for-the-fussiest-of-fish-eaters).

Now, I do eat sardines. And like Alex, I do it for health reasons.

But, generally, I eat sardines either on top of crackers or as a Sardine Spread/Dip. Beyond that I don’t do much with sardines.

So, I am intrigued by Alex’s enthusiasm for sardines.

I am going to give a few of his recipes a try but I will have to adapt them to my circumstances.

For #29, I am going to make a combo of two of my favorite meal preparations, toast topping and a Mug O’Something.

Toast Topping: Mug O’Scrambled Egg and Sardine
(Adapted from: https://www.alexfergus.com/blog/51-sardine-recipes-for-the-fussiest-of-fish-eaters)


Olive oil
1 slice bread, intergral
1 egg
a dollop of milk
1 sardine, drained, chopped and mashed
4-8 dashes of onion powder, to taste
4-8 grinds of black pepper to taste

1/2 - 1 Tspn Lime juice
A sprinkle of paprika

1 Tspn of Mayo

(Mayo, paprika and lime juice not in picture. Used Ponto Sardinas http://www.pontonutricion.com/)


Make Toast

  • Put a small dollop of olive oil into a skillet.
  • Smear it around to coat the bottom with the oil. Use a spoon or a clean napkin.
  • Heat skillet low to medium temperature.
  • Add slice of bread.
  • Toast bread on one side.
  • Flip over and toast on the other side.
  • What I do is flip the slice more than once, to make sure the toast does not burn and toasts evenly.
  • When done place toast on a plate.Spread mayo on toast.

Make Mug O’Scrambled Egg and Sardine

  • Add a dribble of olive oil to the mug.
  • Swirl and swish the oil around to coat the bottom and sides of the mug.
  • Crack the egg into mug.
  • Add milk.
  • Add onion powder and black pepper.
  • Stir well.
  • Whip mixture with a fork to add air.
  • Add sardine mash and lime juice.
  • Stir well.
  • Place mug in microwave.
  • Cover the top of the mug with a small plate.
  • Microwave on high for 1 minute.
  • Check to make sure mixture is fully cooked and not runny.
  • If runny, cook for 30 seconds or more.
  • Once done, place on top of the toast.
  • Use a fork to divide egg mixture, spread and flatten mixture over top of toast.
  • Sprinkle with paprika.


When I first researched sardines, in 2015, I thought they were a sustainable seafood choice. Today, they are not. This made me mad. So, of course, I had to do more research.


California Academy of Sciences

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Sustainable Seafood / Australia

NRDC Smart-Seafood Buying Guide

Eating Well

Trying to find information on sustainable seafood or any topic that benefits the environment is not easy. There are many websites that offer misinformation.

In addition, many “charities”, “foundations”, nonprofits, and environmental protection organizations have been taken over by neocons and they have subverted the organizations’ mission to support for-profit international corporations.

For example:


But, this topic needs more information and would need weeks and months of research.

People should not accept standards or practices that pollute our air, water and soil, or that profit off the pain of others. We can do better.

Short list of Reputable Environmental Non-Profits


Mother Earth News

Note: This list is not comprehensive.

#Not a Seafood Sustainable Recipe

Updated: 4/7/19