Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Amanda Martin "Food Blogger"

Good Morning my family and friends!

I have some exciting news to share with all of you on this crisp fall day! Im happy to announce that I am the "official" food blogger for @newforkcityny! Craig Turpin(@nycraigturpin) offered me this amazing chance to share with all of you, the great food adventures I am about to embark on.

I have so many ideas of how I will be running this. To begin, I will be dining at some of the most incredible restaraunts, dives, cantina's, fine dining, and even your most simple drive thru window here in beautiful sunny Southern California. I promise to bring you, my foodies, a glimpse into:

*History of the establishement(s),
*Why they chose to start a business,
*What they offer their patrons
*Our own "Fork Ratings"
*Dining specials
*Price and value options
*My take and opinion on my dining experience
*Pictures of my Meals&Beverages
*Menu options for those with special diets
*Health Department ratings for Safe dining
*Fresh Ingrediants from Local Growers
*Wait staff
*Naturally a great, fun and honest review!

I also will be bringing reviews, & discounts to our very own "out of towners and vacationers"  Let me know where here in Southern California you are planning to visit, and I will offer my suggestions based on affordablity, taste and location for your dining needs, along with no hassle to have to drive around Los Angeles and surrounding areas just to find somewhere to endulge in your cravings! I will make your dining experiance one you will always remember.

Don't forget! I may be coming to your establishment soon! If you are interested in having me write a food and restaraunt review for your business, you may contact me on Twitter @newforkcityla,@tweetsiecakes or you may always send me an email at and schedule an appointment or a telephone interview with me, and we will make this happen!

Thank you to Craig for making this happen for me! I promise I will not let you down.

I'm looking forward to this great adventure my fantastic foodies!  Sit back, relax, and LET'S EAT!

From my Kitchen to yours, Happy Eating!
Food Blogger and Lover for @newforkcityny, @newforkcityla & @nycraigturpin

Friday, September 14, 2012

Thin line between Love and Hate Part 1

Good Morning and Happy Friday!

So, our boss has challenged myself and our NY affiliate Llhana to do a two part series on "The thin line between love and hate".  My blog today is going to be personal, and from my heart.  Please be advised it's not for the faint of hearts. I will apologize now for any ill feelings you may have after reading this, but like I say, my blogs are posted on FACT.  Grab the coffee, this is going to be one heck of a bumpy ride on the emotional rollercoaster!

This all started way back, 13 years ago when my husband and I got married. The thin line between love and hate is directed towards my "IN LAWS FROM HELL". I will give you some background on these mighty fine folks ha! They have been married now for 39 years. 6 kids, and 5 grandchildren, and one on the way that they have nothing to do with except two. Swell don't you think? 

When Jeremy and I had our first born (ALSO FIRST GRANDCHILD FOR THEM) in 2000, we really thought his parents Larry and Linda would be excited grandparents for the first time. Boy, what were we thinking! Lets take a step back, and let me introduce these amazing people to you. We have Jeremy's father, Larry. Very nice man, truly he is, but completley manipulated and controlled by his wife Linda (Lucifer). He allows her to control him with every thing he does in his life, and is too afraid to stand up and tell her NO.  He drinks from sun up to sundown, and I cant say we blame him, being married to someone like her. I will never say a bad thing about Larry being a grandfather to our son, because he has tried to be a good one, but sadly, Lucifer doesnt allow it.

Now let me introduce you to Linda. A disgraceful woman.  Chose to pick favorites over her children, belittled them on everything they did, starved them as children, told them the reason she never took them anywhere was "because they are just too many of you to love and handle". What a great mom!!!  She is a hermit.  Stays locked inside her home, and doesnt deal with real life issues or people for that matter. Any problem in the family that arises, she "sweeps it under the rug" in her own words. She is never proud of the success her children have had in their life.  She doesnt communicate with the older grandchildren, which would be our son Zachary and my brother in law's daughter Joslyn. She communicates with her favorite child, Brooke and her two children Kaleb and Hailey. (which is our nephew and niece who we never see). She loves to start trouble, and believe me, I know! I could go on and on about her ways, but once you read what Im about to write, this paragraph will sum it up in a nutshell.

Lets go forward to when Zachary was born. She came to the delivery room once while I was in the worst pain of labor. She stayed for a minute and then left.  Right when I gave birth, she showed back up, stayed a second and left.  For being a first time grandmother, you think she would stay and want to hold her grandson like MY mother did! NOPE!  Its all about her!  2 weeks later, she called me on the phone, and said to me that I needed a break. I was like WOW, thank you! I can get laundry done! She offered to take our baby over to her Mom's home (Grandma Dorothy, sweetest lady you will ever meet) for the day.  So I said yes. Im not going to keep her grandchild away from her, and never would I do that to Grandma Dorothy (who also was there when I delievered Zachary). I packed up the diaper bag, breast milk, change of clothes, and off my baby went with his grandma.  Hours go by, never hear a word from her.  Jeremy comes home from work, came home to no baby.  After 2 hours of calling her, she shows up at 6pm. Walks in our house, Zachary is screaming, throws the carseat (which he is in mind you) and says "Hes been a f*****ng brat all day, and I left him in the truck, so I could get a coke from 7-Eleven, and didnt want to be embarrassed by a screaming baby" ARE YOU SERIOUS DEVIL WOMAN! I grabbed Zachary, he was soaking wet.  Jeremy checked the diaper bag, nothing was touched!  We came unglued.  I told her "THAT WAS THE LAST TIME YOU WILL EVER EVER HAVE MY SON AGAIN, NOW GET THE HELL OUT OF OUR HOUSE!". Never again did she have my son! How dare she!  Zachary was born in September, and for those of you that live in the Mojave Desert, we all know the temps are still up in the high 90's to 100's.  What was she thinking? Oh thats right, HERSELF!  This is how it all started.....

Months go by, and Linda was relentless at us. Always causing trouble.  I never comunicated with her, but yet she always found a way (and still does) to blame me for all her problems.  How is that possible when I dont have communication with this witch? Anyways, as the months went on, my Mom and I had talk.  She had told me to always "try" and keep some sort of a relationship with my Mother in Law. Because if something would ever happen to my Mom (which she passed in January 2003), I would have her to turn to. At this point, I was like, yeah right, I want nothing to do with this woman who harmed my child. But, I love my Mother so much, that I listened.  Sadly, January 2003, we lost our Mother to a massive heart attack.  She had Zachary in her arms when she took her last breath.  This came as a huge blow to our family.  This is another story, that I will not get into in this blog, but maybe another time. My husband had called Linda, and told her that Brenda (our Mother) had passed. Do you think she was sympathetic, sad? NO!  Never once did I get a call from her, a card NOTHING! My own mother in law could give a rats ass about how her daughter in law is feeling! I was 22 years old for petes sakes! I just lost my best friend in the world. Never did she care.  She never showed up to Mom's funeral, and niether did the rest of Jeremy's family. Real nice huh? I should tell you, her and Larry are Jehovah Witnesses, they dont attend "WORLDLY FUNERALS" as I found out years later when she approached me and said she was sorry for not attending!  Like hello lady, your 3 years too late! Never was once there for the miscarriages we suffered either!

Now lets jump to when Zachary started Kindergarten in 2004. Zachary was 4 when he started. All excited, and such a big boy! Well come to find out, Linda decided to get a janitorial job at the school, so she could keep tabs on my son! I was like oh hell no! I went directly to the office, and told everyone what kind of grandmother she is, and I felt she shouldnt be around children, because she phyiscally abused her own, and harmed my child by leaving him in a hot truck and also to be possibly be kidnapped! I wanted her no where around Zach whatsoever. So the school made sure she was away.  Next thing I know, she broke into school records to check on our sons progress in school! I HAD ENOUGH! So again, here I am fighting making sure her ass is repremanded for what she did.  They made sure she wasnt there during school hours.

4th grade. Somehow she worked her manipulative magic and did started pushing the trash can she came from back during school hours.  She would find toys at school, and leave them on Zachary's desk. NICE! What a way to worm yourself back into his life with trash you find on the ground. Zachary at first thought it was nice, but then realized what her game was.  He came to Jeremy and I asking lots of questions as to why Linda (he never calls her grandma, do you blame him, he doesnt know her) never had anything to do with him. We told him exactly what happened when he was little, and that for his safety we kept him away.  He understood fully, but was hurt that she could do that to him being as little as he was. So days go by, she would pass him in the halls, and hug him. Zach would hug her back and they would chat.  I wasnt okay with it, but Zachary is not a rude child, so he made the best of a bad situation, and as his Mother, I had to respect his first big choice.  Their little chats would turn into full conversations, and Zachary was kind of liking the idea that he was getting to know his Grandma.  Again, thats fine, he could feel however he wanted, but we warned him on how she is, and that at any minute it could all change.  We didnt want him walking into the lions den not knowing whats in there you know?

A few months later, I had a flare up with my Crohn's disease, and the pain was spreading into my spine, and I could barely walk. Out of nowhere, she called me. "Amanda, its MOM" (MOM HAHAHAHA MY MOM DIED) I said hello, and she said that Zachary had told her the bad shape I was in. She offered to help me with Zachary, because Jeremy works so much at his job. I had to swallow my pride and say yes, just for the benefit of my son, who needed to be at school everyday, and the upcoming field trip. I had no choice, I needed help. You can ask any one of my sisters, and they will tell you the shape I was in.  So everyday, she picked up Zachary, took him to school, went on the long distance filed trip to Palm Springs, brought back pictures, brought him home everyday. Cleaned my house, brought me a plant and some flowers. I was shocked at the transformation!  For the first time, I felt like I really had a good and decent mother in law.  And to this day, I love her for what she did for me, and will always be in debt to her for that help, her and Larry both. I will never deny that! I always ALWAYS made sure she was thanked, and gave her the tightest hug I could. We both felt we had a friendship and a bonding I thought.

My husband and I decided to move our family to Hesperia, where we are now. We wanted a better school for Zachary, closer to my doctors, and it was closer to Jeremy's job. When we called her and Larry and said we were moving out of town, she told us that our son would NEVER make it in another school, that he would fail, and that how dare we not move into her secondary home that she has Jeremy's ailing grandfather in.  Also told us, that when Grandpa dies, we get the house!  We said, never would we stop our life contigent upon someones death!  Thats sick! WE MOVED! 

When we got the keys our new home, I had sent her a text message saying, "Hey come over and help me decorate the new house!" She responded "Oh I would love too, thanks!". So we set up a date. I waited and waited and waited, and she never showed.  Jeremy called her, and said how come you didnt come over? She told him "I WAS NEVER INVITED"! WOW, heres the text message lady! Here we go again with her!  Next thing you know, two of her younger sons moved into new homes, and she sure was there!!  But never ours!  Never has she acknowledged how hard my husband works for all the things we have, never acknowledges his success, ZIP ZERO ZILCH! Total slap in the face for sure! But sure kisses ass to all her other "FAVORITE KIDS".

I didnt speak to her for 2 years after that.  Here we are in almost year 3 in our new home, and never has she been here. Last tax season, the IRS misplaced my husbands birthdate for some odd reason.  We needed his birth certificate. (yrs back I had asked for it and she claimed she didnt keep records like that). He called anyways, and she told him "Its your wife's problem to get that information" UM EXCUSE ME B**CH, YOUR HIS MOTHER! So we went and got the birth certifcate and sent her the bill! Ill show you who's problem it is! Then a few days later, Jeremy called his Dad and asked him to come over and visit.  Larry SNUCK yes I said SNUCK over here to visit with us and Zachary. They werent here even 15 min, when Lucifer called and asked where he was. He replied" At Jeremy and Amanda's" She told him "GET YOUR ASS HOME NOW" MEANWHILE SHE WAS IN ARIZONA AT A WINE TASTING FESTIVAL!  So Larry left. He is spineless when it comes to her and he knows it. Jeremy was distraught. We found out later that Linda told Larry he cant have a relationship with his son as long as his son is married to me! WHAT THE F*****G F***! I called Larry and said if she was such a "CHRISTIAN" she would know the wife and child are put first, the parents become second! And how dare she make my husband choose his wife of 13 years or his Mother who never gave a shit (SORRY) about him. Well, as I sit here with my husband right now, you obviosuly see what his choice was.

More things with her have gone on since that day. She has threatned me with a restraining order because I called Adult Services on her mistreatment of Jeremy's grandfather.  She is abusing him, neglecting him with basic needs and Jeremy and I wanted to end it.  The second I called, she threatned to have me arrested! FOR WHAT! GETTING GRANDPA THE HELP YOU DONT GIVE HIM YOU COW! Ugh! Whatever.  Shes a pure piece of shit, and Im NOT SORRY FOR SAYING IT!  Her and I barely speak, and if so its usually through a text messasge, telling me how we all need to be a family.  HA HA, lady I tried!  Remember all the school pics every year of Zach I send you, letters updating you on what hes doing.  Never do I mention Jeremy or I, and here I am the one taking the higher road, and she lays guilt trips down like shes the big family matriarch!  MY ASS!

I need to end this before I have a nervous breakdown.  I only bestow the kindness she has showed on me.  Yet, theres that part of me that loves her, because she is my husbands Mother, and without her I wouldnt have him..  The line between love and hate for her is thinner than a piece of floss that MacGuyver could wittle a bomb with. 

I hope she realizes that shes missing out on the privelage of being Zachary's only living grandmother.  Her loss, not his, nor ours. Again, I wish her all the kindess she wished on me and my boys.

So again, love and hate? Isnt that far for sure when it comes to relationships.  Please read Llhana's blog at for her Part 2. I cant wait to read it!!!!

Please dont judge me for this blog.  Its my feelings, and until someone has lived through what I have in 13 years with this woman, negative opinions should stay quiet. Thank you again, and taking time to read this novel. 

You never know, you may end up seeing Lucifer and I are "Monster in Laws" on A&E.

Love always!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Crayola Catastrophe

Good Morning America

First and foremost, my thoughts and unconditional love is poured out to the 2,977 heroes and thier families, we lost 11 years ago. My heart aches today for these brave souls. Today we are ALL brothers and sisters. May we never forget.

My blog today is basically going to be a rant. Brace yourselves for this one!

My 12 year old son, attends an academy for junior high.  He maintains a 4.0 GPA (grade point average).  At our academy, you are able to view "Power School". Which is a site, that you can view your childs grades in all subjects and classes.

Our son comes home yesterday with a "Contract" from his English teacher, I will call her Mrs. WELCH grape juice. Contact states that Zachary is FAILING his 4th period English Class, because his class notes ARE NOT WRITTEN IN CRAYONS and TRACED IN COLORED PENCILS. Typed from Mrs. Grape Juice "I will do the following to improve my grade", and she made Zachary write "I will write all my notes in crayon". Want to talk about seeing RED! Jeremy and I were like "WHAT IS THIS"! Our son told us that she is failing him because he doesn't write his assignments and class notes in crayon! Is this not obseured?  So off to my computer I go.  I email the teacher a nice little note.
Hello Mrs. Welch,(GRAPE JUICE)
 We are Jeremy and Amanda, Zachary's parents. We have a few concerns as to why you are failing our son in your ELA class. He is maintaing all A's in his classes except for yours.  He had explained to me and his Father, that he is recieving a failing grade over his notes not being colored? We were not aware this was kindergarten. If this comes off a tad harsh, WE DO NOT apologize, but our son has NEVER recieved an F in school, needless to say in the 4th week, let alone in the 7th grade, over a colored notebook. We do not have his notebook here at home, to see and somehow understand why its so important to color notes in junior high.  Is it possible that you have it? If so, please contact us as soon as possible.  This matter needs to be cleared up by tomorrow,  as my husband and I are quite upset.
You may reach me at this email address, or please feel free to contact me at (***) ***-***
Thank you kindly,
Amanda and Jeremy Martin
First of all, my husband and I are very supportive parents at all aspects of our son. You can imagine to our dismay how shocked we were at this! Immediatly, I called my sister.  She was in shock also!  She suggested I write a letter to the teacher in CRAYON.  THATS WHAT I DID! This is the email I get back from the Crayola Queen.
Mrs. Martin,

Thank you for your inquiry regarding Zachary's progress in my class this year.  I am so glad we have the Powerschools program so that parents like you and teachers can always keep tabs on students' grades.  Zachary should have his notebook with him at this time so that YOU can discuss with him the reasons for his low grade  I do require the students to color their notes; however, that is only 1out of 10 points for every assignment.  I require the students to trace over their notes with color because it is a way for me to be sure that they are reviewing the notes they take in class each day. They are also required to summarize the notes they take every day, which is a very important junior high skill.  As you review Zachary's notebook, you will also notice that Zachary did well on the first quiz that he took, and that his second notebook grade was much better.  Zachary knows that he can fix any of the assignments in his notebook, and turn them in for a better grade.  I have confidence that he will continue to improve throughout the grading period.  Since I did not get to meet you at back to school night, I am especially looking forward to meeting YOU at our upcoming parent-teacher conferences.  Please feel free to contact me if you have any further questions or concerns. "
NUMBER ONE! Zachary has NO ASSIGNMENTS THAT REQUIRE COLORING NOTES IN CRAYON! I'd like to know why as a teacher, parents or her students werent notified that the new 7th grade is KINDERGARTEN! Here's the email I sent back!

Monday, September 10, 2012

Tragedy turns to Triumph

Good Afternoon my lovelies,
     I had attempted to start this early this morning, but too much tragedy struck our community and I had to take a moment and reflect on this, and seen how it tied into the original idea I had for today's blog.

It's the eve of 9/11. I'll never forget that day as long as I live. That morning was just our typical day.  The aroma of coffee filled my kitchen. Zachary who had just turned 1yr old, was soundly sleeping in his crib, recovering from the usual summer cold. Jeremy had already left for work. I was in my kitchen, when our telephone rang, it was my Mother. "Amanda, are you awake? You need to turn on ABC7 right now." "Why Mom, what's wrong?" "The World Trade Center was hit by a plane!" I was stunned.  The World Trade Center? I remember years prior, a small plane had hit it, so I'm thinking history was repeating itself.  I grabbed our remote, and to my horror, I see the tower on fire, and within seconds, I see the second plane strike. I stood their motionless, stunned and moritifed to see what was happening to our Great Nation. My Mom was still on the phone crying, and no words were spoken between us. The silence was of doom, death, tragedy.  Minutes passed as I was fixated to my television screen. Who did this? Why us? Next thing, plane hits the Pentagon. This is unreal! BOOM! Towers collapse. My heart broke.

The world wasn't the same after this. For days, my family and I were glued to the TV's, watching all this unveil. How could of we lost all our brothers and sisters in a senseless and tragic event like this? Every heart in the world was aching for our Country and to those brave souls we lost that very unfateful day. I personally have never fully recovered from it, and I don't know if I ever will. I have studied the attacks, watched every video you can find online, read every book that has been published, trying to see a way to triumph over this great loss.  Every year that passes, I think of those names etched on the tip of a pen. My heart is deeply saddened.

Within months, America began to rebuild  Lower Manhattan. We came together as a united front and took control of what is ours.  We turned "Tragedy into Triumph", standing our ground, vowing that NOBODY will attack American Soil again! For those we loved, perrished that awful day, but because of them, we chose to flourish and make heal the scars that were intentionally left upon us, and keeping their legacies alive.

Today, another senseless attack happened. A pedestrian crossing the street was hit by a car, and was killed immediatly.  TRAGIC! Everywhere around us, tragedy is striking.  How can we stop this? How can we try and ease someones suffering, or possibly prevent something bad? Is that even possible?

Maybe it is, maybe it's not.  All that matters is where we can reach.  And here at Arc Angel Foundation and "Charity from the heart", we strive to provide what is needed to as many people as we can. Whether its needing a friend, food, clothing, shelter.  We are working hard each and every day to make this happen.

Please don't hesitate to ask for help. If your having a personal tragedy, we are here to turn it into triumph. There's no shame in needing assistance. Your information will be kept confidental.  Please feel free to contact me @tweetsiecakes on Twitter,, or Maurice McClinton @romeo_gambino on Twitter.  We value each and everyone, no one will be turned away.

Follow our upcoming and exciting new business ventures.  I promise I will keep you all updated each leaf we turn over.
Until tomorrow!
Love and more Love,

Friday, September 7, 2012

Wellness and Support Systems

Its 7:12am on a sunny Friday morning. I woke up at 5:00am to a message from a friend needing support. For those of you not knowing, I'm LIVING with Crohn's Disease. I have been LIVING with this disease for close to 10 years. The friend was a fellow "Crohnie Brother". For weeks now, he has been battiling the pain, and begging for his chemo therapy infusion of Remicade. (same chemo drug I am on for 5 years). He told me he is an emotional mess. No one in his life seems to understand what he is going through, and he feels alone in his fight against this horrible disease. My heart sank when he told me this.

I am known as the "Warrior". So, I gave him my "Warrior" speech, and Im going to share it with all of you, who are either having your own battle with health, disease, sadness, despair or just feeling alone.  I told my friend, that number one, that the "Key to wellness is an endless and loving support system". Without that, who will stand by you? Who will be there to wipe the tears, or just give a hug when the pain is too unbearable to tolerate?  He agreed. He also mentioned that the people in his life "Just dont understand me Amanda". Its not that they dont understand, its just that some people are naive and choose NOT to learn and become familiar with Crohn's Disease, therefore know NOTHING about what its like, and dont give the unconditional love and support that is needed. 

My husband of 13 years, Jeremy, has stood by me through this all. Pain, internal bleeding, basically living at the hospital, the 5 years of infusions I undergo, days I cant get off the toilet and so much more.  I know that without my husband, whos my biggest supporter, I wouldnt be where I am today. Case in point.  We all need support as we endure this. My heart goes out to my friend. I explained that sometimes loved ones can just stand beside us as we face the challenges of Crohn's, but its us who walk this battle field alone. Meaning, some choose to live with it, and some choose to suffer.  But no matter what, we have to physically feel the horror by ourselves. I tell alot of my fellow Crohnie brothers and sisters this, when one of them is flaring up and has no positivity at the moment. "We are in this together, one wipe at a time." They laugh and it puts that smile on their face. Maybe its that one "Angel" (previous blog) that they needed for the one second in time.

Being in a support system runs like this. Here's a good analogy, and I say this alot to get people thinking and to know we are all here for eachother. This can be applied to anything trials or struggles in life. "Your a ship out in a rocky sea. The waves are high, and you see no help in the far distance.  Not even a spotlight. And right when the storm gets so bad, and you think the ship will sink, here come these little tugboats, pulling you in to safe and calm seas". This is what it is about folks. Lending any kind of support to your fellow brother and sister.

This is all connects to my personal life and my work ethic. My message is simple, and should always be applied. My message applies to my work. Here at Arc Angel, we are giving back and supporting those who have no support, no little tugboat to bring them ashore, no Angel in sight. Its my personal mission and calling to help and support anyone whos going through times like this.  Sometimes just a few simple words can make someones day. Just knowing someone whos there, on the other end of the phone, or the computer screen, understands what the other is dealing with. It gives a comfort zone, a safe haven you could call it, that we are not alone in any of this.

I hope this has inspired you somehow. Because everyday I come across people who are inspirations to me, who deserve the recognition for trying and battiling what most people cant. Please visit for more information on Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis. You will find stories that will touch your heart, and very useful information that can help you understand what us Crohnie's have to live with for the rest of our lives.

My love to all my little tugboats,