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Hodad's, Ocean Beach, CA - Best bacon cheeseburger as voted by Guy Fieri and CNN

Located on a San Diego beachside, Hodad's offers some of the West Coast's biggest hamburgers. According to Forbes Traveler, the most popular menu item, the double, weighs in at well over half a pound and is piled with lettuce, tomato, onion, pickle, mayonnaise, mustard and ketchup. Hodad's famously messy burgers come wrapped in wax paper, which owner Mike Hardin half-jokingly calls a "burger trough." Do as the locals do and order a double bacon cheeseburger with fries and a shake. Lesser appetites can order an "unburger"--all of the toppings, none of the burger.

In April 2009, CNN named Hodad's one of the "five tasty burger joints worth visiting" and Hodad's has also been featured on the Food Network, appearing on Guy Fieri's Diners, Drive-ins and Dives in August 2008 and on The Best Thing I Ever Ate - Bacon in June 2009.

"They have a burger where they make a bacon patty that goes on top of the burger that is just ridiculous," said Fieri. It's his belief that all ingredients in a burger must co-exist and compliment one another for a great experience.

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Posted by Amanda, in General, Travel.

Anti-theft lunch bags

Tired of having your food stolen by sticky-fingered coworkers or roommates? Bullies taking your kid's lunch? Well, worry no more . . . Anti-Theft Lunch Bags designed by innovative designer Sherwood Forlee are sandwich bags that have green splotches printed on both sides, making your freshly prepared lunch look spoiled. Don't suffer the injustice of having your sandwich stolen again! Protect your lunch with Anti-Theft Lunch Bags.  The construction is food-safe reusable and recyclable LDPE. 

$10 for 26,

Rachael Ray says: "Use a hilarious Anti-Theft Lunch Bag to throw off any sneaky lunchtime crooks. The exterior is marked with fake moldy splotches." 

Anti Theft Lunch Bag .jpgAnti Theft Lunch Bag.jpg

Posted by Amanda, in General.

Best Little Beach Towns - Boca Grande, FL

For travelers seeking casual retreats for sand and surf, this uncrowded and unpretentious spot in Florida makes an ideal and affordable trip.

The cult-fave town of Boca Grande is a throwback, an Old Florida time warp with such whimsically named streets as Damnificare and no chain stores or ye-olde theme restaurants. This idyllic and Edenic escape on the Gulf of Mexica features a much-photographed lighthouse watching over Gasparilla Island State Park and long, quiet beaches touched by gentle surf. Boca Grande is a wonderland, a place that defies the clich├ęs of Florida beach towns - all the sloppy, party-hearty aspects - while embodying the best of what the state has to offer.

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In the free and easy days of summer, the quest for a great American beach town like Boca Grande is a national passion. Beach towns are a mainstay of the hot months, a beacon for countless citizens looking for a reprieve from the daily grind.

Travel + Leisure recommends staying at The Gasparilla Inn, a member of the Historic Hotels of America and the National Trust for Historic Preservation. The Gasparilla Inn is the classic resort and comes complete with a golf course. 

Gasparilla Inn in Boca Grande Florida.jpgOf note, however, is the the Inn is closed during the hottest months so the best alternative is its sister property, the Innlet, which features a waterside restaurant and a relaxed vibe.
The Innlet Hotel Boca Grande Florida.jpgWhen eating in Boca Grande, Travel + Leisure featured Temptation Restaurant, a funky Florida spot with character - think murals of leaping tarpon and a neon martini sign. The Temptation serves local grouper, pompano, and soft-shell crabs.

Temptation Restaurant in Boca Grande Florida.jpgFor more information on places to stay, where to eat and what to do, visit the Boca Grande Chamber of Commerce website.

Posted by Amanda, in Travel.

The Edgy Little Black Dress - A Fall 2009 Fashion Trend

During Glamour's 2009 Fashion Week, two of the most wearable trends that emerged were the one-shoulder dress and the edgy little black dress (LBD). The times are changing, and the LBD is changing with them. Designers looked toward the future with seriously severe shapes, sleek cutouts and body-hugging silhouettes that brought these black dresses a very next-century feel. The one-shoulder dress is full of drama and asymmetry that make it instantly intriguing and draws attention to the shoulder and the face.

Anne Hathaway recently donned a Sophia Kokosalaki mini-dress that embodied the edgy little black dress and one-shoulder dress all in one.

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The unexpected cutouts of the Twinkle sculpture dress make a luxe frock subtly sexy.  

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Nanette Lepore's Athena dress is a button-down style transformed into a sexy frock with a side bow, puff cap sleeves and a spread collar.

Nanette Lepore Edgy Little Black Dress.jpg

Sources: In Style, Glamour

Posted by Amanda, in Celebrity Fashion, Dresses.

Antique Roadshow's first $1 million dollar appraisal

Antique Roadshow has television shows in both the U.S. and in England. In the new season, which starts January 2010 on PBS, the first $1 million appraisal will be featured.

A woman brought four pieces of carved Chinese Jade that she inherited to a Roadshow event in Raleigh, North Carolina. The pieces of carved jade and celadon dated from the Chien Lung Dynasty (1736-1795) and included a large bowl crafted for the Emperor. Asian arts appraiser James Callahan said that a mark on the bottom of the bowl indicated it was created for an imperial order. The pieces were given a conservative auction estimate of up to $1.07 million. This is far and away the biggest appraisal in the show's 13-year run, the previous record was a 1937 painting by Clyfford Still which was estimated at around $500,000. The excitement generated by this appraisal will doubtlessly send many people scrambling to the attic to revisit the treasures they've inherited. A word of caution though, an appraisal is no guarantee of a final sale price.

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Posted by Amanda, in General.

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