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February 2008

January 2008

Your Super Bowl Party, 5 Easy Ways To Give It A Healthy Food Makeover

Hi All,

Since it's almost time for the Super Bowl, where my native New York Giants will hopefully make history and overcome the odds to win the Super Bowl, and ruin the New England Patriots' "perfect season", I thought I would share with you one of my articles that shows you how I approach healthy eating. 

It's NEVER by denying myself anything, but simply by doing a healthy food makeover to convert a favorite comfort food I love over to its healthiest possible form.

Check it out and enjoy the Super Bowl!

http://www.healthyeatingcoach.com/superbowl.html

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008


Healthy Food Review Flatout Bread Wraps

Hi All,

Every now and then when you have a little extra time food shopping, you need to browse the aisles of your local supermarket, and preferably natural foods market, just to see what's new.  Usually healthy food gets hidden in the regular supermarkets, but every now and then it makes a prominent display.

Such was the case one cold Colorado day recently when I was trying to relieve some "cabin fever" and decided to bundle up to walk to my nearby Wal-Mart Super Center (less than half a mile fortunately from where I live).  deciding I was in no rush to get back outside into the frigid air, I warmed up by walking around the large store.  In a display by the second front door, a new package caught my eye, and I was intrigued by Flatout Bread Wraps--sort of a cross between a tortilla and pita bread.  In regular (100 calorie) and light versions (90 calories), one look at the label showed this was a formidable way to get some nutrition!

The Italian Herb light variety of Flatout Bread Wrap is a great source of whole grains with a superb 9 grams of fiber and 9 grams of protein with just 2.5 grams of fat and no saturated or trans fat.

The important question was--would it taste like cardboard?

My husband and I couldn't resist testing it like the packaging suggested as a base for low calorie, low fat pizzas.  I made my pizza with Newman's Own Organic Marinara Sauce, Kraft Reduced Fat Parmesan, oregano, fresh spinach leaves and Kraft Free Shredded Mozzarella.  We made my husband's pizza, similar except he opted for Hormel turkey pepperoni and no parmesan. 15 minutes later at 300 degrees in the oven, both came out looking like works of art and smelling wonderful!  No doubt this is one skinny pizza--in fortunately every sense of the word.  The package of 6 suffice it to say, did not last long as we had healthy pizza two more times in quick succession!

The Flatout Bread Wraps http://www.flatoutbread.com also make great side "bread" for a pasta dish or to use as a sandwich wrap for your favorites--for me my healthy tuna salad or Jarlsberg Lite Swiss Cheese and veggies.

Thanks to a cold day, a new household favorite is crowned!

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Please note that I do not have an affiliation with any of the companies featured in this post--they are simply products I am personally familiar with.  The views expressed are my opinion only and you should decide, along with your healthcare professionals, on the appropriateness for your personal use.

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008


Fitness Tip Picking Up The Pace

Hi All,

Recently I realized I was having trouble burning enough calories in a day, and I couldn't figure out why.  I was still working out--walking and weight lifting--about the same as before, yet my daily total was under where it should be. 

Suddenly, I noticed from tracking my pedometer that my total number of steps per day was down substantially despite maintaining, and even lengthening, the distance and duration of some of those walking workouts.  So what was up if my number of steps wasn't?

I thought about anything that might have changed over the last couple of months in my daily routine, and then it hit me.  Some on-site consulting work I was doing as a sales trainer for a company had ended (which I was actually glad about, as it gave me a more flexible schedule and time to do more of my projects), and I was back in my home office on a daily basis.

The company had this gigantic sales floor that I used to have to walk around from one end to the other all the time, as I would be monitoring the calls of the sales reps, and stopping to coach them as I caught them doing something that was off.  I would be on one end of the sales floor, and hear someone sitting on the opposite end make a big error, and pretty much have to race across the sales floor to stop them before they did it again (as they usually didn't notice the instant, on-screen messages I was frantically sending them and I had to appear in person to make my point).

All that patrolling of that sizable distance, not to mention that the company had two levels to go up and down, was now missing from my weekday routine.  I still was covering distance, but my 700 square foot secondary place in Colorado couldn't possibly compare.

Once I had figured this out, I was able to make the adjustment by:

--making a real effort to pace around my place whenever I could during phone conversations, thinking about ideas, making dinner, etc.

--going the long way to my desired destination whenever possible--whether another room in my place, or in the building, or anywhere I went on foot.

--going up and down the four flights of stairs in the complex multiple times a day

--bundling up and running every possible errand locally on foot in-between workouts.

--when that wasn't possible, driving to a destination, and then running all errands I could in that general area on foot.

Before long, by making a conscious effort to figure out why I wasn't burning enough calories, I had found a way to make up for the lost "mileage" around the sales floor, and picked up the pace!  So if you're not burning enough calories each day, stop, analyze and go out of your way to pick up the pace in your everyday life--it's so worth it!

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008


NYC Fast Food Law Makes Sense

Hi All,

You wouldn't think that my native New York City would be at the forefront of healthy eating legislation, more like my adopted recent Southern California home, but after passing legislation giving restaurants a certain period of time in which to eliminate trans fats from the food they serve, they're back again with a proposal before the New York City Board of Health to require fast food chains to post calorie content on their menus in plain sight.

The theory is that if you knew you were guzzling down an average 1300 calories in a meal, perhaps some of the lighter fare these places do offer might see the light of day, people would eat smaller portions, or cut down on their order.  I think it's a good idea because study after study shows most people (I used to myself) do underestimate the number of calories that they eat in a day. 

Deep down, most people entering a fast food chain restaurant know they are not about to eat health food in general (although in fairness, it's all about choices, as most fast food chains have some food of redeeming value on their menus, but it's rarely chosen), but the difference between "I'm eating a lot of calories" and "Holy @%&#! I'm eating a lot of calories", could be quite eye opening.

Of course calories are just one aspect of eating healthy--you also need to know about other nutrition information such as fat (saturated and trans fat especially), protein, fiber, carbohydrates and sodium to name a few, to truly evaluate one offering from another.  So I'd actually prefer that there was also a big board showing the details for each item as well posted on the wall by the counter.  But it's a start.

Of course the New York Restaurant Association doesn't like the proposal, claiming it will clutter up already crowded menus among other things.  A bit lame, no?  Why clutter up a menu with calorie facts!

I also think that just targeting fast food chains of 15 locations or more isn't going far enough.  Why just them?  Why shouldn't ANY eatery--fast food or 5-star restaurant or hot dog stand--with even one location be required to post the same nutrition information, so customers can make better choices anywhere they go?  The most elegant restaurant can serve food that is just as fattening as a fast food place--you just pay more for it and eat slower!

The proposal is before the Board today and would take affect on Mach 31st if it passes.  Keep your fingers crossed, as it may encourage more states to do the same and then some.  But even if it doesn't, ultimately we are all responsible for the choices we make, and if nutrition information is not available at an eating establishment, check out their web site.  If it still isn't there, contact them and ask why not--what have they got to hide? 

You can also carry the convenient CalorieKing Calorie, Fat And Carbohydrate Counter which includes information for 200 fast food and chain restaurants as well as 11,000 total food entries.

More nutrition information doesn't necessarily mean you won't eat an item if you know the calorie content is huge (although I hope it will at least give you a moment's pause), but at least you can make a conscious choice and know that you have to mix in more salads or fruit too, and you'll have to work out to burn it off for sure that day.

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008


It's A Sad Day When Celebrities Have To Explain Weight Gains To The Media

Hi All,

So what's with all the celebrity announcements to the media about possible weight gains? 

Yesterday, Eva Longoria felt compelled to tell us that she had gained weight due to not working from "the writer's strike".  Recently, Rene Zellweger did the same thing, explaining that she was gaining weight for a new Bridget Jones movie. 

I guess it all started when poor Jennifer Love Hewitt defended not being a size zero after her less than perfect, although still bikini photos that most normal women would kill for, became the talk of the internet.  Now celebrities are on the offensive making sure they admit to weight gains before their picture is a problem?

The average Amercian woman is a size 12, so none of these celebrities are in any way overweight.

Personally, I would be a lot more interested in hearing about a celebrity's blood sugar, cholesterol or triglycerides being optimal, and hear them feeling bad and fessing up when they are out of whack.  Then maybe we can have more Americans pay attention to these key health markers instead of commenting on who's a size zero vs. two vs. whatever. 

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008


Healthy Food Review 365 (Whole Foods) Organic Peanut Butter

Hi All,

I recently decided to add more protein to my diet to help build more lean muscle mass in my weight lifting.  But as someone who follows a healthy "NMP" lifestyle--the one I write about in my book Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!--I have to be more creative in finding ways to up the protein in my diet.  By the way, to learn more about "NMP" check out the Healthy Eating FAQs on my site at http://www.healthyeatingcoach.com/faqs.html.

Anyway, I figured it might be time to go back to my childhood and try peanut butter again.  For me, I ideally wanted it to be organic because peanuts are a high pesticide crop, and/or can be genetically modified (GMO).  I also wanted a version with no trans fats (hydrogenated oils) of any kind.  Plus, I didn't want it to be one of those ooey-gooey health food peanut butters that looks like a science experiment gone awry when you open the jar, because the oil separates, and you have to sir it up each time.

Whole Foods Market to the rescue!  Their store brand (365) had peanut butter that met all of these requirements--organic, no trans fat and no stir. It's available in creamy or crunchy (the latter is my preference)--http://www.wholefoodsmarket.com

Spread it on whole grain bread, a whole grain bagel half, a whole grain waffle, or apple slices, banana or celery.  Whatever your preference, this peanut butter is tasty, has great consistency and does it as healthfully as possible.

Another good peanut butter for those of you who don't care about your peanut butter being organic (like my husband--yes we have two jars of peanut butter in our household, also because he likes creamy and I like crunchy), and don't shop natural food stores like Whole Foods Market, good old Skippy Natural, available in creamy or crunchy varieties as well is another good trans fat free, no stir choice--http://www.peanutbutter.com/natural.asp (note that natural does not equal organic)!

TIP:  Yes peanut butter is a protein powerhouse, and a source of "good" fats, but it is high in calories, so portion control is a must.  If you have trouble knowing what a serving of peanut butter really is like I do, just take out a tablespoon and measure out the two tablespoon serving size for the nutritional information on the label, and put it on your desired food destination so you can visualize it.  Do this until you can easily eyeball the right portion, so you get all the benefits but in the right amount.

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Please note that I do not have an affiliation with any of the companies featured in this post--they are simply products I am personally familiar with.  The views expressed are my opinion only and you should decide, along with your healthcare professionals, on the appropriateness for your personal use.

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008


Healthy Food Review Knorr Sides Plus Cheddar Rice With Broccoli And Carrots

Hi All,

Normally I like to make rice and pasta dishes myself, with my ingredients as opposed to pre-packaged stuff, but every now and then you think maybe someone has actually put together something pre-packaged that can save me a bunch of time, and still give me at least close to the nutrition I am looking for.  So I gave Knorr Sides Plus Cheddar Rice With Broccoli And Carrots a try.

I should've known what I was getting into when I bought this rice mix, but I had a coupon begging to be used before expiration.  Plus, the label with its promise of "two full servings of veggies per pouch" and the appetizing, full of beautiful carrots and broccoli in the dish and forkful on the packaging made me give it a try.  Let's just say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, or the magnification of the product packaging.

First, a pouch has two servings per package, so that means if two eat this side dish, each person gets "a" serving of "veggies".  Next, there seemed to be a decent amount of carrots, but there were just little broccoli scrapings throughout the package that, to me, it looked like if you actually strained out all the broccoli, it couldn't have amounted to more than a couple of florets for both servings. Not exactly big antioxidant power there. 

And yet Knorr pats itself on the back and states on the package "did you know along with carrots, this variety has broccoli which contains folic acid!"  Yes broccoli contains folic acid, but first you need to have a decent amount of broccoli in the package to get that benefit.

Well, at least there should be big cheddar taste, right?  Wrong.  I could barely taste any cheddar and it seemed to taste more like chicken stock.  I made this side dish into a main dish when I prepared the rice with some Morningstar Farms Meal Starters Chik'n Strips (a vegetarian chicken strip substitute I'll review separately)--that "chicken" was the concoction's saving grace as it gave the dish overall some much needed flavor.  You would think with 710 mg of sodium per serving you wouldn't be lacking flavor from this rice, but it was.

Knorr could make this rice a lot better by using brown rice, having more than a couple of floret's worth of broccoli in its product, and actually finding a way to give it some cheddar taste.  Other products--in fact, organic ones (which I always prefer)--seem to be able to pull off a good cheddar taste without a ton of fat or calories, so I am not sure why the issue here.  Let Knorr know they need to do better at www.letsmakeknorr.com.

I'd rather "not make knorr again dot com".  Just as fast is to take a bag of instant brown rice (10 minutes in the microwave), steam lots of shredded carrots and pre-sliced broccoli from the supermarket, organic if possible (yes you pay a premium for pre-cut veggies, but it's so worth it if it keeps you eating healthy), using a steamer or one of the new microwave steaming bags for this purpose.  Sprinkle some reduced fat parmesan cheese over the finished combination, and you'll have more taste, fiber and veggies with minimal fat.  An easy, healthy makeover!

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Please note that I do not have an affiliation with any of the companies featured in this post--they are simply products I am personally familiar with.  The views expressed are my opinion only and you should decide, along with your healthcare professionals, on the appropriateness for your personal use.

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008


Healthy Food Review Vitasoy Peppermint Chocolate Soymilk

Hi All,

I'm a little behind on holiday-related items this year.  My husband and I were lucky enough to have the foresight in July to book a holiday trip to Florida beginning Christmas Day, to give us some relief from the Colorado winter that we still haven't gotten used to after over a decade in Southern California and Vegas.

My "I need chocolate" sensor was on red alert today, so I was rummaging around looking for something not too damaging to satisfy it.  That's pretty easy to do in my household as I don't bring things that are bad for you into the house to begin with and keep plenty of snacks around that won't do me any harm.

I spied the container of Vitasoy Peppermint Chocolate Soymilk that I had picked up to try just before the holidays, when a well-placed check-out display at my local Whole Foods Market caught my attention, and decided to give it a go.  Normally, White Wave's Silk Chocolate Soymilk which I absolutely LOVE is a dietary staple in my refrigerator; the Vitasoy one was a treat in my view.

As I sipped it ice cold from the refrigerator, somehow a soundtrack featuring Bryan Adams' song "Thought I'd Died And Gone To Heaven" began playing in my head.  WOW!  I am a huge chocolate mint fan but this was truly something special.  140 calories a serving, low-fat, organic and fantastic!

Now my problem is that this is apparently just a holiday limited -time flavor, so unless Whole Foods has some left over I may be out of luck until next holiday season.  Hey Vitasoy--if you make this one a year-round flavor, I guarantee you your sales will go through the roof!  It's not just for holidays anymore!  http://www.vitasoy-usa.com.

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Please note that I do not have an affiliation with any of the companies featured in this post--they are simply products I am personally familiar with.  The views expressed are my opinion only and you should decide, along with your healthcare professionals, on the appropriateness for your personal use.

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008


Fitness Tip The Healthy Way To Watch The NFL Playoffs

Hi All,

It's one of those great ironies that while two teams sweat it out in an NFL playoff game, most of us are definitely on the sidelines doing anything but sweating.  We're sitting, and likely we're eating--double jeopardy.

Don't get me wrong, I can't play football at all, and I am not saying we don't deserve some couch time.  But each of us can work up a sweat in our own way while we watch the game.  It wasn't always that way for me, but fortunately I have kind of a built-in "OK, it's time to move now" sensor in my body.  After watching the NY Giants beat Tampa Bay in the first game of a Wild Card double-header today, as much as I was into also watching the Chargers-Titans game, that "I'm a slug" feeling started creeping in. 

What was the solution?  SIMPLE!

I went down to my complex's gym and got in a walking workout on the treadmill for most of the first half of the game and watched the game on the TV monitor there.  They sweated, I sweated, and burned almost 300 calories without taking in any calories.  Even better was that I had my iPod with my workout tracks on, so I got to watch the game while not listening to the inane commentary (as much as I like Phil Simms as a Giant fan by birth and former Native New Yorker), or the commercials--how many times can hey run that same stupid Jeep ad with the guy singing with the widlife?  Even the guy on the exercise bike turned to me to comment on how they were already wearing that one out!

Another idea--do something active everytime they go to a commercial or time out.  Since there is less football per telecast than either ads or breaks in the action.  This has to be an almost sure-fire way to get buff!

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008


Welcome To The Healthy Food Review!

Hi All--

This is a blog that I have been wanting to do for quite awhile.  As a health coach, healthy food makeover specialist and author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  I have a different point of view on many topics relating to healthy eating and healthy living that I hope you'll find refreshing.  I am known for "telling it like it is" in every aspect of my writings, so expect me to be a bit outspoken.

Basically I believe that it is possible to eat healthy without giving up any of the favorite comfort foods you love--you just have to learn to make them over into their healthiest versions.  I also believe it's important to build "cheat time" into overall healthy eating habits, so you stick with it for the long term, and do not view it as just another temporary fad diet "quick fix".

Most importantly, I believe that regardless of your age, it's never too early, and it's never too late to make changes in your eating habits and to have a more active lifestyle.  What you don't do today, is VERY likely to show up later in a body that does not allow you to live life to the fullest--and "later" may be sooner than you think!  Even teens today have high blood pressure, clogged arteries, diabetes and high cholesterol!  I've seen my share of what diet-related diseases and an inactive lifestyle can do to your quality of life first-hand, and it's not pretty. 

Okay, that's enough seriousness.  Generally I like to make my points with a lot of humor and fun stories--so my goal is to have you laughing and learning!

In this blog expect to see:

**Lots of HONEST healthy food product reviews based on my personal experiences so you'll know if these offerings are worth opening your wallet and mouth for;

**My thoughts on various food, health and fitness industry issues, news and practices;

**Healthy food makeovers where I'll show you how to turn a favorite food that's not so good for you, into a favorite food that IS good for you;

**Healthy food recipes;

**Answers to your questions in my "Ask The Coach segments"--feel free to e-mail me or post a question for my consideration for answering in this blog;

**Various tips and resources on healthy eating and healthy living;

I've got no one to answer to except myself, so let the fun begin!

--Melanie R. Jordan, Author of Have Your Cheeseburger And Keep Your Health Too!  Available 24/7 at http://www.HealthyEatingCoach.com

Don't miss a post--subscribe to The Healthy Food Review feed.  It's easy!  CLICK HERE

Check out more of Melanie's empowering publications on work-at-home lifestyles, foreclosure investing and learn about her Marketing and Infopreneur Consulting and Coaching Services at http://www.SunLoverPublishing.com

"Healthy eating with favorite comfort foods...it's deliciously possible!"

Check out Melanie's other Blog for Las Vegas locals and Las Vegas visitors at http://www.VegasInsideScoop.com

Copyright SunLover Publishing 2008