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Profile for Jennifer K. > Reviews

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Content by Jennifer K.
Top Reviewer Ranking: 233
Helpful Votes: 196

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Reviews Written by
Jennifer K. (Alberta, Canada)
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   

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500 Casseroles: The Only Casserole Compendium You'll Ever Need (500 Series Cookbooks)
500 Casseroles: The Only Casserole Compendium You'll Ever Need (500 Series Cookbooks)
by Rebecca Baugniet
Edition: Hardcover
Price: CDN$ 25.34
17 used & new from CDN$ 3.83

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Perfect for unlimited budgets in NYC USA, Dec 14 2015
It's been a long time since I've been this disappointed with a book. I try to not expect much from cookbooks, but this cookbook still managed to disappoint me. Why?
The size (about the same height and width as a CD case) doesn't bother me, although it's an odd and awkward size for a cookbook.
The number of pages (with about 1/3rd of the pages filled only with possible substitutions, recipe by recipe, which would have been better placed *on* the actual recipe page for each recipe instead of in separate sections) is wasteful and poorly thought out, but obviously the author and editor wanted it this way, so it doesn't really bother me.
What _does_ bother me (why I think this book stinks) is that most of these recipes call for exotic, expensive, hard-to-find (or impossible to find) ingredients, and a well stocked liquor cabinet. I think if most people could find or afford hard or impossible to find cheeses, cuts of meat, types of meat and fresh seafoods (fresh quail, rabbit, boneless legs of lamb, pounds of fresh lobster and crabs, fresh mussels in shells, fresh squid, etc), vegetables and fungi (fresh morels for example), and spices (fresh saffron, garam masala, etc), they certainly wouldn't drown them in cups of red wine, 'pale ale', white wine, sherry, cream, etc in a casserole.
Some of the ingredients and measurements are perplexing ('smoked paprika', 'Italian parsley', 'Spanish paprika', 'Chesapeake seasoning blend', 'Italian sausage', 'Hungarian paprika', 'German sausages', 'large pinch of saffron threads').
I had to Google some ingredients (prosciutto, tamari, pancetta, Arborio rice, Vidalia onions, Emmental cheese, fontina, gremolata, cremini mushrooms, annatto powder, for example) as I had no idea what they are or where to find them.
Ingredients such as 'packet of onion soup mix', 'packet of taco seasoning', and so forth were.. confusing. Which size of packet? Why not simply list spices for a cook to mix together?
I think if you have an unlimited food budget, are not watching calories, enjoy "slumming it" by having casseroles, and live in a U.S. uber city like NYC, your personal chef might enjoy this book. However, if you're on a budget, if you're looking for basic, tasty casserole recipes, or if you live in a major Canadian city, this is NOT a book you will use or enjoy.
I can't imagine I'll be able to make any of these recipes, and I can't even think of anyone who might like this book as a gift. What a waste.

Dress My Cupcake DMC41WT956 Washi Decorative Tape for Gifts and Favors, Vintage Butterflies
Dress My Cupcake DMC41WT956 Washi Decorative Tape for Gifts and Favors, Vintage Butterflies
Price: CDN$ 5.99
3 used & new from CDN$ 5.99

1.0 out of 5 stars Very disappointing, Dec 6 2015
The tape I received doesn't have a light yellowish background, it looks like a dirty light amber colour, and the butterflies look blurry (looks like the printing wasn't done properly) and garish. It just doesn't look like the product page picture, and I'm very disappointed.

Ikea Oradd, Ceramic Beige Flower Plant Pot Set of 3
Ikea Oradd, Ceramic Beige Flower Plant Pot Set of 3
Offered by What America Buys
Price: CDN$ 46.30

1.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing, Oct. 18 2015
These are sleek plastic pots that a) are rigid and can break and crack fairly easily, and b) turn colour from off-white/beige to a sickly, uneven yellow colour in less than 60 days in direct sunlight. Very disappointing :(

Esschert Design USA W4008 Secrets Du Potager Paper Pot Maker
Esschert Design USA W4008 Secrets Du Potager Paper Pot Maker
Price: CDN$ 17.99
5 used & new from CDN$ 17.99

1.0 out of 5 stars Not what I'd hoped for, Oct. 18 2015
I had high hopes for this item. I thought I'd make lots and lots of pots from old newspapers for friends who start seeds indoors and transplant seedlings into their gardens. I believe it was Oscar Wilde who wrote, "No good deed goes unpunished." True.
The first thing I noticed (from included instruction sheet) was that the process would take several steps and require precise measuring and cutting. In other words, it'd be finicky.
Then I noticed how rough the wood was. After I removed several splinters from my hands, I sanded the two pieces of wood. And sanded. Not easy to do given the shape of the pieces. I noticed the wood seemed extremely dry, and was beginning to develop small cracks.
After much measuring and cutting, I tried to make a newspaper pot. Around attempt ten, I gave up. The pots either didn't crimp together well enough to stay together, or, if I used more pressure, I couldn't remove the new pot without tearing it.
A friend suggested I use varnish on the two pieces of wood to make them smoother, so (ideally) the pots would come off easily.
After seven coats of varnish (did I mention the wood was unusually dry?), the set is smooth and sleek. And still gives the same problems as before.
After hours of attempts, lots of wasted newspaper, and sore (and inky!) hands, I gave up. I gave the few pots that turned out to a friend, who later reluctantly told me the (double thick as well as single thickness) pots didn't even stand up to soil being gently scooped into them.
I'm sorry I wasted so much of my time, energy, and money (including the varnish, brush, and sandpaper).
I'm sorry this manufacturer came up with this product.
And I'm sorry I got my hopes up that this might be a nice little thing to do (making seedling pots) for friends.

Neenah AstroBright Color Laser/Inkjet Paper, 24-Pound, 8.5 x 11-Inch, 500 Sheets, Red
Neenah AstroBright Color Laser/Inkjet Paper, 24-Pound, 8.5 x 11-Inch, 500 Sheets, Red
Price: CDN$ 14.99
7 used & new from CDN$ 14.60

1.0 out of 5 stars "Re-Entry Red", not plain old primary colour red, Sept. 25 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I thought this would be the closest to a plain old primary red in colour (vs Rocket Red), but a Re-Entry Red sheet in person doesn't look the same as
a) the product information photo,
b) actual primary red from a different paper brand, or
c) a sheet of Re-Entry Red (same brand) a friend gave me from her order a few months ago.
My Re-Entry Red paper has almost as much of an orangey, salmon hue to it as Rocket Red, and I must admit, I'm disappointed.
Other than the disappointing colour, the paper has a nice feel to it and seems sturdy, not thin and flimsy (like for example school looseleaf paper).

Coffee Bathroom Spa Elastic Headband Hair Band 2 Pcs for Lady
Coffee Bathroom Spa Elastic Headband Hair Band 2 Pcs for Lady

2.0 out of 5 stars Other colours have lasted longer and better, Sept. 20 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I've bought several of these in different colours, but only one colour has unraveled/come apart: this coffee/dark brown colour. After a few weeks and several washes, the thread keeping it sewn together came out. If you've ever tried to sew dark thread on dark material or stretchy material, you'll understand why I didn't repair these. I threw them away.
The other colours have survived much better, holding their colours and shapes and stitching for over a year of wearings and (hot water machine) washings. I use one every day in my thick hair, either as a hair band or a pony tail holder, and I toss it into the washing machine each night, so they go through a lot.

Finish Power and Free Jet Dry Dishwasher Rinse Aid Additive with Hydrogen Peroxide Action, 200ml, 6.76-Ounce
Finish Power and Free Jet Dry Dishwasher Rinse Aid Additive with Hydrogen Peroxide Action, 200ml, 6.76-Ounce
Price: CDN$ 5.49

2.0 out of 5 stars Money down the drain, Sept. 20 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
I don't know if it's because of the hard water here in Alberta, or if this stuff just doesn't work too well. My glass drinking glasses look cloudy and dull, my cutlery looks dull, but not very spotty. My plates and bowls look good though. I don't know if I really notice a difference for the better or worse using this product, but my nearest and dearest faithfully uses this in her dishwasher and swears by it (hence 2 stars instead of 1). But.. she hand-washes her glass drinking glasses, glass bowls, and some cutlery.
If it matters, I use Cascade dishwasher packs/tabs in pre-heated hot water rinse, heated dry cycle. Dishwasher is under two years old, but has significant hard water residue build-up throughout. I was told by the technician who delivered and installed the dishwasher to faithfully use this product to.. ahem.. prevent hard water residue build-up and to get 'sparkling' clean dishes.

Amazon.ca Gift Card- Email - Flower Heart
Amazon.ca Gift Card- Email - Flower Heart
Price: CDN$ 100.00

5.0 out of 5 stars How to be popular even with the pickiest & prickliest people, Sept. 20 2015
Verified Purchase(What's this?)
Not much to say other than it's very hard to go wrong when giving an Amazon gift certificate, which are easy to send (and re-send if the recipient mistakenly deleted it from their e-mail account), whether by e-mail or by snail mailing a printed hard copy printed on your choice of paper.
Even the pickiest and prickliest people can find Something they'll love on Amazon.
We've been satisfied customers for over a dozen years, and we're still surprised at times by the ever-expanding range of things sold by Amazon :)

Whitmor 6154-2616 Mesh Tote
Whitmor 6154-2616 Mesh Tote
Price: CDN$ 6.64
6 used & new from CDN$ 6.64

5.0 out of 5 stars Great, but with one major drawback: everyone who sees it wants it!, Sept. 20 2015
I had no expectations when I ordered two of these bags. I hoped they'd make strong, washable/reusable bags for storing empty jugs and bottles and hold up to trips to the recycling depot, but I prepared myself for returning them to Amazon if they fell apart after the first machine wash or something, as other brands of mesh bags have done. But. They didn't fall apart. They're still going strong and look brand new after repeated washings and outings.
I'm 5'6", so I find these bags a bit long for me, but I stopped caring when I saw how much they can hold!
The drawstring at the top is brilliant, really helps hold empty recyclables that often seem determined to try to make one last bid for freedom, especially in the back seat of my vehicle.
The handles are wide and soft and don't dig into my (sensitive skin) hands, even when I over fill a bag with dirty laundry.
There are only two huge drawbacks to these bags:
1. You'll find SO many different uses for them, you'll be ordering more time after time after time, and
2. Other people who see these bags in action HAVE to have one, so you may have to stand your ground when strangers go gaga over your bags at the grocery store (because they want one for larger grocery items like toilet paper packages, or for storing their kids stuffed toys or toy balls, or want to use it as a catch-all in their car or garage or front entryway), or at the recycling depot (because they want one for their empty bottles and jugs, or for their kids' sports equipment, or for camping/fishing trips). People in lines at various places have offered to buy my bags on the spot, and I've ordered many more for friends and family who have clucked and pointed at my bags because it's JUST what they've been looking for :)

Genuine Joe GJO02312 Heavy Duty Low-Density Kitchen Trash Bag, 13 gallon Capacity, 31" Width x 24" Height x 0.80 mil Thickness, White (Box of 150)
Genuine Joe GJO02312 Heavy Duty Low-Density Kitchen Trash Bag, 13 gallon Capacity, 31" Width x 24" Height x 0.80 mil Thickness, White (Box of 150)
Price: CDN$ 26.79
11 used & new from CDN$ 26.79

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars Bags that ARE trash, Sept. 20 2015
First of all, these do NOT come folded flat, individually folded (as stated in the product description). They are on a roll. In fact several rolls, in a seemingly factory-sealed heavy duty cardboard box (and the box is definitely not a dispenser, but the product description claims it is).
In my case, the edges of all the bags and the outer bag on each roll looked absolutely filthy dirty, covered with what looked like dirt, debris, and industrial type dust (but the inside of the box itself seemed new and reasonably clean). Because of the "miracle" of static cling and because of the way the bags are rolled up, it's simply not possible to adequately clean off all the debris.
I managed to clean off most of it and to store the rolls in sealed ziplock bags, but I carefully open and turn each bag inside out (so the filth is on the inside) before I put it in the rubbish bin, right before I have a shower (that I'm going to have anyway) and put my clothes in the washing machine. I don't want to know or think about what sort of filth is on these bags, but they're technically useable, so I didn't return them to Amazon. But. I'll never order these bags again.
They're also not heavy-duty (as stated in the product description). They're white, not clear as I thought when ordering them and looking at the product page photo, and sort of look like popular brand bags (walk-in store generic, or the big G name brand) but seem to be made of a.. I want to say brittle plastic.. but that's not exactly what I mean. I mean there's absolutely no give, no stretch in these bags, and even the slightest thing like the corner or edge of a breakfast cereal box neatly slices these bags wide open in the bin. And thats without forcing the box in, and with an otherwise empty bag, and the bag isn't stretched to fit the bin.
I have to double or triple bag each bag of trash each time and have to double bag recycling items such as empty plastic bottles just to get them out of my apartment without them.. spontaneously splitting.. I'd call it. I keep my fingernails short, no pets, no kids, nothing sharp along doors or door frames, and I don't tend to chuck out anything particularly pointy or sharp, so I can't understand why these bags can't hold up as well as the flimsiest cheapo generic bags on the market.
There's no savings when one has to double, triple, or quadruple bag trash or recycling to get it to the trash chute or the recycling depot.
I'm really disappointed with these bags and if I could have a do-over, I'd send them back to Amazon with harsh words for the manufacturer.
These bags also have a mild stink of.. well.. that nasty tang of poor quality plastic that many of us over the age of thirty recall from poor quality toys we had (but only till our parents noticed the stink) as children, so if you're sensitive to odd odours, these might make you queasy. It's definitely not some sort of odour suppressing coating that some big name companies use on the insides of their trash bags, and it's not a hold-over smell from the Lysol kitchen wipes I used to try to clean off the top and bottom of each roll.

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