Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up – 11th – 17th April 2022 – Twitter fakes, Hits 1992, Ella Fitzgerald, #Caribbean, Vitamin C, Stories, Poetry, Reviews, Health and Funnies

Welcome to the round up of posts you might have missed this week on Smorgasbord.

It seems that winter is dragging on for many this week including places that hve been seeing some unseasonal cold weather and frosts such as South America, with some crops at risk at this critical stage in their growth. By this time I usually have my planters full of flowers but last week we had several severe frosts but hopeful it will be warmer this week. Apart from the colour in the garden.. the exercise would be welcome, especially after we shared a box of luxury chocolates for Easter instead of eggs… a little of what you fancy does you good!!.


On another note. This week someone decided to use my name and photograph and open an account on Twitter. One of my contacts alerted me to it early in the week as they had been approached but she saw it was a different twitter tag although it was my name and picture. Also there was no profile to indicate who and what this person was nor where there any tweets made.

I reported and blocked them. This is important as they are usually after your connections and all they have to do is click on Followers in a profile and then keep clicking the follow button without much limitation.

Many people follow back automatically when a notification appears in their timeline without heading over to check who it is they are following. This means that this fake person can end up with potentially thousands of followers who they can then target for one purpose or another. For example book promotion sites who claim to have 250,000 connections and ask for £50 a promotion!  Or it may be direct messages promoting their goods or even asking donations for a charity etc.

Anyway.. my twitter is @sgc58… and it is Sally Georgina Cronin

They are using  and it is a good idea to block them to stop them mining your followers and if you feel like reporting them then that is a good idea too.

I did report to twitter and told them they were impersonating me but they wanted me to upload my passport or driving licence to prove who I was. I am not doing that as most social media sites as as leaky as my kitchen colander.

It is best to check before following back anyone.. if they are genuine they will have at least some form of profile to indicate who and what they are and they have tweeted.

There is always something to be grateful for, including these three amazing contributors.

My thanks to William Price King for joining me on The Breakfast show this week and for the first part of the new series for Friday featuring Ella Fitzgerald.  – You can also find William – Blog– IMPROVISATION– William Price King on Tumblr

Debby Gies has been busy this week with her catch up posts following her two months away from her blog including some highlights from her trip to Puerto Vallarta in #Mexico… of particular interest to anyone going there for a vacation with regard to food, drink and restaurant service…

You will also find a packed Writer’s links post and her Sunday book review for Alex Craigie – Means to DeceiveD.G. Writes

Carol Taylor has had another interesting week on her blog and she has wrapped them all up in one terrific round up. Including Monday Musings, Chicken with Shitake Mushrooms and Tarragon, World Cuisine featuring the eclectic food to be found in Canada, Spring Cleaning the Spice Cupboard and her usual entertaining Saturday Snippets.

CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 10th -16th April 2022-Monday Musings, A-Z World Cuisine, Canada , Food Review “Spring Cleaning” and Saturday Snippets where “Squeak” is my prompt.

Thank you for all your support during the week and always lovely to receive your comments… have a lovely rest of the weekend.

On with the show…


Chart Hits 1992 Part Two – George Michael and Elton John, Boys II Men, Shakespears Sister , Bruce Springsteen

William Price King meets the Jazz Icons – Ella Fitzgerald – The Early Years

The Travel Column Rewind with D.G. Kaye – #Caribbean- Welcome to St. Martin – Two Countries – One Island

Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiencies with Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Vitamin C (ascorbic acid and L-ascorbic acid) oranges, grapefruit, cauliflower, eggplant

Just an Odd Job Girl – Serialisation – #Romance, #Humour – Chapter One- Reflections on the Past

TankaProse – Verse Envelope – Seasons – text and audio

Memories, Music and Movies – 1997 – Belgium, road trip, Dublin, Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman, The Full Monty

Smorgasbord Podcast – Tales from the Irish Garden.. A Place of Sanctuary

Food Therapy Rewind- #Asparagus #VitaminK2 – Nutrient Packed and Delicious by Sally Cronin

#Biography #WWI, Queen Victoria, #Adventures, Lucky Jack by S. Bavey

Guest Post – I Wish I Knew Then What I Know Now! by John W. Howell

New Book on the Shelves – #Western #Paranormal Mateo’s Blood Brother by Sandra Cox

#Fantasy #Adventure – The Ferryman and the Sea Witch by D.Wallace Peach

#Family, #Dementia, Why Grandma Doesn’t Know Me by Abbie Johnson Taylor

Personal Recommendations – #Family Allan Hudson, #Children’s Sue Wickstead, #Children’s Bette A. Stevens

The Senior Team pass the the funnies along – Pearls of Wisdom Part Two – Sunbathing and Scarecrows

Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Fish Bait and dating columns


Thank you very much for joining me today and I hope you will drop by again next week.. Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Memories, Music and Movies – 1997 – Belgium, road trip, Dublin, Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman, The Full Monty

I cannot remember a time when music and movies where not a part of my life.

1997 – Belgium, road trip, Dublin, Andrea Boccelli and Sarah Brightman, The Full Monty

During our married life since 1980 we had lived in the UK for the first five years, USA for two years, back in the UK for nine years and after after 18 months in Belgium, David was asked to head up a cable television company in Ireland and by the October he was back in Dublin.stock image smclassic cars

I packed up our house in Rhodes – Saint- Genese and decided to bring my car back with me. For those of you who have been following these memories you will remember that I shipped my Mercury Topaz back to the UK from Texas in early 1987.

1991 BMW 318i / 325i Convertible Black Manual E30 ...

stock image smclassic cars

My car in Belgium was a BMW convertible.. 316i and I drove across to the ferry in Holland over to England then onwards to North Wales and the ferry to Dublin. A fine adventure and gave me plenty of practice with a left hand drive car on the other side of the road.

On arrival in Dublin our worldly belongings went into storage and we stayed with my father-in-law for a few weeks and looked for a house to rent closer to David’s office. We settled on a lovely Georgian house in Sandymount, close to the sea and settled in for six months as we house hunted.

We celebrated our 17th Wedding Anniversary by having our first formal photograph not having had a photographer at our wedding. We had them taken in both colour and black and white.

It was the start of the Celtic tiger years and house prices in Dublin itself were prohibitive. But we had the time to find just the right place.

Our social life was busy and we met a lot of very interesting people at company functions. We had our first Christmas back in Ireland and it was lovely to be able to share with family for the first time in several years.

1997 was also the year that we completed the Anthony Robbins Life Mastery with two trips, one to Aspen and the other as memory serves me to St. Thomas. It had been an interesting experience and certainly had helped motivate me to lose the rest of my weight. I was now 10 stone lighter than my original 24stone and once in Ireland I would lose the last stone in the next few months.

Tony Robbins Life & Wealth Mastery: Transform your mind ...

I never did cross the burning coals during the Anthony Robbins Firewalks we attended, although David walked across 40 feet of them!

To be honest I was quite happy not to do it.. David is far braver than I was… and here is Oprah Winfrey during her Unleash the Power Within.Oprah Firewalk

It has not always gone so well as you can see from this report in 2016: Dallas Firewalk

I did however lose enough weight to climb to the top of a 60 foot telegraph pole and jump from the top towards a trapeze.. We were on safety ropes, but when I stood on the top of the pole and balanced carefully, I looked down to see just one puny man holding onto the end of way below me.. I shouted down to add another man to the rope which they did. I then shouted ‘Geronimo’ and jumped. I missed the trapeze and ended up being lowered to the ground and I am sure that I met those two men on their way up as I descended!

Size Matters which had begun life as a journal to record my return to a healthy weight and the programme that I designed to lose the excess pounds, was now in manuscript form and during 1998 I would begin the process of finding an agent in Dublin which would lead me down dead end alleys for the next two years.

To be honest the music of 1997 passed me by as I relied on my albums and tapes rather than the French and Dutch radio programmes. And when I look back at the charts of the year they seemed to be filled with one hit wonders and people that I have never heard of since. There were obviously artists such as Elton John, Puff Daddy and Faith Adams, The Spice Girls and Will Smith with Men in Black. But who were No Doubt with Don’t Speak, Chumbawamba with Tubhumping, Hanson with MmmBop, and No Money with Where do you go? Barbra Streisand and Celine Dion did well with Tell Him but I have selected one of the most beautiful tracks from the year to feature.

We have moved so many times… from the USA, UK, Belgium and now back to Ireland and each time we left behind wonderful friends. This one is for them.

Andrea Bocelli and Sarah Brightman – Time to Say Goodbye. Andrea Bocelli 

We did manage to catch quite a few of the films in their original versions or bought videos when they became available. We were delighted to get back to our weekend cinema visits on our return to Dublin in the October and caught some of the best of the year.

These included Titanic, Mrs Brown, Good Will Hunting, The Lost World – Jurassic Park, The Fifth Element, Liar, Liar, Men in Black, Tomorrow Never Dies, Boogie Nights, Donnie Brasco, Air Force One, Face Off, As Good as it Gets and the wonderful The Full Monty.

Here is the trailer for The Full Monty.. Brilliant film

Thank you for joining me this last few months with my walk down Memory Lane  – Tomorrow Just an Odd Job Girl serialisation begins

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – 4th – 10th April 2022 – Hits 1992, Dionne Warwick, Legacy, Movie memories, Book Reviews, Health and Humour

Welcome to the round up of posts this week on Smorgasbord that you might have missed.

A varied week on the weather front here with bright sunshine one minute and heavy thunderstorms and hail the next. We are hoping that this week will see the last of the frosts and Easter weekend will be bright and sunny.

As always the news is as varied, and apart from anything else I am extremely grateful and privileged to live in a country with so many freedoms. Ireland has suffered in the past with independence coming at a very high price in terms of lives and following the devastating famine. But that was a century ago and today it is a thriving nation who has opened its doors to refugees without question.

I don’t understand how in this modern world of global communications, space travel and amazing medical advances, some individuals behave in such a medieval horrendous fashion. What is constant, is the bravery and determination of those subjected to tyranny, in standing up against it, on both sides of the conflict. Let’s hope this week there will be some more postive steps to a resolution.

News on the blog front and a new series begins next week

I am sure like me, there have been times when you have wondered what difference might have been made to your life, if your younger self had been gifted with the experience and knowledge you have accumulated over the years.

I invited several friends from the writing community to share their thoughts on this subject which I am sure you will enjoy as much as I did. The first guest post is by John Howell on Wednesday, and the rest of the series will be airing over the next few months.

Do you have a new book available or on pre-order in the next few weeks?

Please let me have the Amazon link and I will do the usual new book on the shelves promotion. If you have not seen one of the promotional posts for a new book before, here is a recent example which has received over 160 views since 4th April and multiple shares on Twitter.

New Book on the Shelves – #Romance – Between The Vines (Keystone Couples) by Staci Troilo

Please make sure your Amazon and Goodreads bios are up to date and if you have not been featured before on Smorgasbord, please add your blog/website, Twitter, Facebook in your email. Send to and I will let you know if I need anything else.

My thanks to William Price King for joining me on The Breakfast show this week and for the final part of the Dionne Warwick story. Next week a new series for Friday featuring Ella Fitzgerald.

Debby Gies is back from Mexico and shared her travel adventure (nightmare) that is flying back and forth from destinations with chaotic airport managment and conflicting restrictions.. However, she also shares some of the highlights of her two months in between flights that made the whole trip worth it in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico.

I’m back from Puerto Vallarta…

This week marked a year since the sad loss of her husband ‘G’ and in a poignant post Debby shares a tribute to her soul mate… you can read that on her blog along with this week’s book review D.G. Writes

Debby is here on Monday with some Caribbean sunshine on St. Martin in The Travel Column.

Carol Taylor has had a busy week on her blog and you can enjoy all her posts in her weekly round up.  This Wednesday Carol will be joining me for our weekly look at nutrients with recipes for foods containing Vitamin C.

CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 3rd -9th April 2022-Monday Musings, A-Z World Cuisine, China , Food Review “Cabbage” and Saturday Snippets where “Bubble” is my prompt.

On with the show

The Breakfast Show with William Price King and Sally Cronin – Chart Hits 1992 Part One – Eric Clapton, Vanessa Williams, Celine Dion & Peabo Bryson, Billy Ray Cyrus

William Price King meets the Music Legends – Dionne Warwick – The 1980s Onwards

Celebration of a legacy – Sue Vincent and Mary Smith.

Tales from the Irish Garden – Messengers of Peace and Desperation

Memories, Music and Movies – 1995 – East Anglia, Mechanical Bulls, Annie Lennox and Madison County

1996 – Loss, Anthony Robbins, Belgium, Celine Dion, Brassed Off

Food Therapy Rewind – #Watermelon – A quick way to hydrate

#Psychological #Thriller – Where There’s Doubt by Terry Tyler

#Children’s – #New – #Playtime – David’s Bin Day by Sue Wickstead

#Romance – Between The Vines (Keystone Couples) by Staci Troilo

#Poetry – Hues Of Hope: Selected Poetry by Balroop Singh

Share an Extract from your latest book – #YA #BlendedFamilies – Hype by Yvette Calleiro

#Biography #WWI, Queen Victoria, #Adventures, Lucky Jack by S. Bavey

– Personal Recommendations – #Contemporary #Romance Linda Bradley, #Portugal Louise Ross, #Africa #Flyingboats Jemima Pett

#OnlineProtection Jacqui Murray, #Review Traci Kenworth, #Publishing Nicholas Rossis, #Flash John Howell, #Funnies The Story Reading Ape

Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Flying and Saddles

The Senior Team pass the the funnies along – Pearls of Wisdom Part One – Recruits and Stomachs


Thank you for dropping in and your comments and shares.. they are very much appreciated.. I hope you will join me again next week.. Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Memories, Music and Movies – 1996 – Loss, Anthony Robbins, Belgium, Celine Dion, Brassed Off

I cannot remember a time when music and movies where not a part of my life.

Loss, Anthony Robbins, Belgium, Celine Dion, Brassed Off

It is 1996 and huge year of change for both of us as a couple and as a family. My father’s health continued to deteriorate but he was determined to make his 80th birthday on January 12th and we celebrated with a lunch at the Queen’s Hotel in Southsea.

I had come to the end of my contract in Peterborough and Norwich and was able to pop down from London three times a week to Portsmouth to help out over the next three months along with my sister and her husband.

Sadly on Good Friday my father died in hospital after a very brave fight and even the week before he was convinced that he was going to beat this thing!

As I mentioned in the last post my weight had blossomed! By the August of 1995 I had weighed over 24 stone (330lbs) and I was now in the process of losing that weight and was down about four stone (56lbs. Although I was being very strict about my diet, I was finding it tough going despite my best efforts. I was however devouring every book on nutrition and health that I could which was proving to be illuminating.

Back in 1995 as I began my weight loss process and in need of all the motivation I could muster, David heard that Anthony Robbins the American motivational speaker was coming to Birmingham and had signed us up for his Fire Walk Weekend. I had no idea what to expect and to be honest when we had attended this motivational event I was very self-conscious about my weight and somewhat resistent. However, we met some very interesting people, many who were also looking for a kick up the backside and it would be the start of me getting back control of my body and willpower. David actually walked across 25 foot of burning coals but I was far too heavy to attempt it! Not to mention too chicken!

Over the next two years we would attended Tony Robbins Life Mastery series in America, Hawaii and the Caribbean and it certainly helped keep me motivated as I lost another seven stone in weight.


David was head hunted for a job in Brussels and we decided to put the house in South Woodford on the market rather than let it. It was sad to leave the house as we had enjoyed nine years there and made a lot of friends both locally and through our respective jobs. But we both felt that a new adventure would be good for us and it would prove to be just that.

David went ahead of me to Brussels and we eventually found a very nice house in Rhodes -Saint- Genese which was very close to the town of Waterloo and the battleground. We would spend 18 months there and were very happy exploring Brussels and the wonderful surrounding countryside.

I had brushed up my French that I had studied at school but it was not good enough to work in Belgium. So I  took the opportunity to continue my nutritional studies, developing a workable eating programme tailor made for my needs and walking 5 miles every week day. I also began wriiting the daily journal that would later become my first book Size Matters.

By the end of 1996 I had reached my target weight..

It was during this time in Brussels that we also made another emotional journey. My mother’s father had been killed on November 2nd, 1918 only nine days before peace was declared when she was just over a year old. My sister researched his whereabouts through the War Graves Commission and had discovered that he was buried in a small military cemetery close to the village of Poix du Nord just across the border into Northern France. She and her husband Robert had taken my mother to see her father’s grave a couple of years before our time in Belgium but both she and my mother came to stay with us in November 1996 so that we could lay a wreath on his grave on Remembrance Sunday.

In the charts

To be honest there was little time for music in the first few months of 1996 and when I look back at the charts there are many artists that I did not remember and who seem to have been one hit wonders.

It was the start of Spice Girl fever and they had two hits in the charts with Wannabe and Say You’ll Be There, George Michael with Fast Love, Los Del Rio with Macarena (love dancing to that), Take That with How Deep Is Your Love, Boyzone and Words, Celine Dion and Because You Loved Me and It’s All Coming Back To Me Now, Dunblane and Knocking on Heaven’s Door and Gina G and Ooh Aah, Just a Little Bit.

Because my father was a huge fan of Celine Dion, here is It’s All Coming Back To Me Now CelineDion 

Buy Celine Dion music: Amazon

We managed to see a  few films in London early in the year, but once we moved to Brussels we had to go into the city for version original films or wait until the video came out. Television was in Dutch or French so we watched a lot of videos that year. There were some great films released however that we have enjoyed since including Fargo, Trainspotting, Independence Day, Jerry Maguire, The English Patient, Mission Impossible, Primal Fear, The Rock, Brassed Off, Bed of Roses and Broken Arrow.

My father also loved brass bands so here is the William Tell Overture from the film Brassed Off…


I hope you have enjoyed joining me on this trip down Memory Lane and will join me next year for our adventures in 1997.. and our move back to Ireland.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Memories, Music and Movies – 1995 – East Anglia, Mechanical Bulls, Annie Lennox and Madison County

I cannot remember a time when music and movies where not a part of my life.

1995 – East Anglia, Mechanical Bulls, Annie Lennox and Madison County

It is 1995 and our lives continued to rattle along with our jobs taking a priority but with some welcome breaks during the year, and of course our weekend cinema jaunts

I had moved from my role as director of customer services in the London franchise to director of operations for the two East Anglia franchises based in Norwich and Peterborough. I would drive between the two, living in hotels for the first few weeks, returning to London for the weekends.

A lot of mileage but I eventually rented a flat in Peterborough and a redundant vicarage in Norwich so that the other managers who also commuted between the two operations could stay, saving a lot of money on hotel bills for all of us.

Both systems were growing rapidly and with the travel and being away from home my expanding waistline increased at a rapid rate. I was now over 23 stone (322lbs) and my health was becoming severely compromised. Still we still managed to have some fun and games and the whole company at the Peterborough end turned out for an evening’s entertainment at a local venue where a mechanical bull was installed.

There was a balcony overlooking the dance floor and it was lined with staff all waiting to see which muggins would ride the bull first. I felt it was important to motivate them all so headed off to tackle the beast. The owner of the bull looked a little wary as I approached, sneaking glances between me and the bull who also looked a little terrified. But undaunted I insisted on mounting the beast and gripping the rope handles firmly requested that the operator click the on switch.

I stayed in the saddle for over a minute but only because the poor animal was struggling to buck me off. There was also a rather disturbing grinding noise as the bull attempted to gyrate and kick and finally I took pity and fell off onto the inflated surrounds. With this sudden release from my weight the bull took off in an exuberant whirling and bucking performance that was applauded mightily from the balcony.

However, my efforts encouraged others to come forward and I have the photos which provide all the incentive to keep the weight off FOREVER. Mortification that will haunt me always and as will the look of relief on that bull’s face.

We also managed a trip to the United States and visited the East Coast, driving up the wonderful scenic route ending in New England where we met up with the parents of very good friends we had made in Texas. The lobster dinner we enjoyed has stayed in our minds all these years later and I added even more photographs to the album that would motivate me to lose weight. I now weighed over 330lbs and added to my mortification was the flight attendant shouting down the aisle of the plane, requesting a seat belt extension on the return trip.

Something had to change and I had some decisions to make about my future.

In the charts.

Travelling hundreds of miles a week did mean that I listened to a great deal of music in 1995 and the charts were full of great tracks from artists, many of which are still going strong today. However, there are some that I do not remember from that year and have never heard of since and perhaps you can enlighten me if they ring a bell with you. At #3 and #4 were a group called Theouthere Brothers! Ini Kantoze at #18, further down the charts Perez ‘Prez’ Prado & his Orchestra and John Scatman who sounds more like an animal tracker than a popstar.

Anyway the more established artists of the day included my two favourites from the TV series Soldier, SoldierRobson Green and Jerome Flynn who had two hits with Unchained Melody and I Believe, Michael Jackson with You Are Not Alone and Earth Song, Take ThatBack For Good and Never Forget, Simply RedFairground, PulpCommon People, OasisSome Might Say and Roll With It, Boyzone – Love Me For A Reason and Wet, Wet, Wet with Julia Says. I have chosen Annie Lennox with one of my all-time favourites – No More I Love You’s –Annie Lennox

Buy the record: Amazon

When I returned to South Woodford for the weekends; we would make the most of it by hitting the cinema in the city. That year there were some memorable movies and here are some that we saw: Seven, Braveheart, Toy Story, The Usual Suspects, Heat, Apollo 13, GoldenEye, Die Hard with a Vengeance, Babe, Get Shorty, Dead Man Walking, Rob Roy, Batman Forever, Sense and Sensibility, The Bridges of Madison County (brilliant) and Waterworld (loved it).

Here is the theme from Madison County and if you have not seen this wonderful love story with Meryl Streep and Clint Eastwood then I suggest you download the movie.The music was composed by Clint Eastwood – KAD MUSIK 

Buy the bridges of Madison CountyAmazon

1996 was going to be a challenging year as my father lost his battle with cancer and we made another country move to Belgium.. But, it is part of life’s rich tapestry and 1996 was also the year when I began studying nutrition and the human body and began my journey back to a healthy weight. I also began writing my first book and I never would have imagined that twenty six years later I would be sharing my life with you here on my blog.

Thanks for taking this walk down Memory Lane and I hope you will join me again for the next episode. Sally

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Weekly Round Up – March 28th – April 3rd 2022 – Oscars, Chart Hits 1991, Cruising, B12, Book reviews, Podcast, Humour

Welcome to the round up of posts from the week that you might have missed on Smorgasbord.

I hope everyone is doing well. There seems to be little change in the main headlines in the last week, apart from celebrities behaving badly which considering all that is going on in the world seems very ill advised.

I love movies and I used to look forward to the Oscars and would stay up late to watch the whole red carpet and award ceremony. The last few years however, it seems to have become a traversty of its origins, which were to honour those within the industry for their excellence.

Although I have to say that many of the fashion designers seem to be getting their own back for previous slights or insults from certain celebrities and dressing them in some appalling outfits, and no doubt charging a fortune for them.

I also think the $140,000 gift bags sent to 28 of the top nominees for Oscars did not send the right message any year let alone this one – The Academy does not send the gift bags but since it has become a tradition, they seem to condone it.

If you would like to know what the selected nominees received here is a list courtesy of

The most expensive item in this year’s bag is a $50,000 three-night stay at Turin Castle in Scotland, inspired by Denzel Washington’s “Best Actor” nomination for “The Tragedy of Macbeth.” Guests who accept the offer will have full access to the 17th century castle, complete with butler service and a bagpiper welcome when they arrive.

The bags also include 52 other items and experiences. Here are a few highlights:

  • A $12,000 “Celebrity Arms” liposuction procedure from cosmetic surgeon Dr. Thomas Su
  • The title of “Lord” or “Lady of Glencoe,” along with a small plot of land in Scotland
  • $25,000 worth of home renovations from Los Angeles-based Maison Construction
  • An assortment of “flavor wrapped” popcorn packages from Opopop
  • Up to $10,000 worth of “treatments and rejuvenation procedures” from Dr. Konstantin Vasyukevich
  • A $15,000 four-night stay for two at the Golden Door luxury resort and spa in Escondico, Calif.
  • A small batch tea gift set from Oprah-approved The Chai Box
  • A $1,200 life coaching session with wellness expert Kayote Joseph 

Clearly many of the celebrities will not be availing themselves of all the gift items but the total worth is almost $4 million. Having said that some of the gifts require a high tolerance to pain! Perhaps some of the recipients might auction their gift bags off for a good cause!

There is a sting in the tail as those who do accept and use the gifts will have a price to pay as they are liable for tax…

Anyway… enough griping…

My thanks as always to William Price King for the music, Debby Gies who shared her excellent tips for enjoying a cruising holiday and Carol Taylor for her wonderful recipes to ensure we are getting sufficient B12 and Vitamin E.

Debby Gies has returned to the frozen north from Mexico and has shared one of the reviews from books she read on her break…

Sunday book review Flowers and Stone by Jan Sikes

Carol Taylor has had a packed week and here is the link to her round up with something for everyone…

Monday Musings, Health, A-Z World Cuisine Bulgaria , Food Substitutes and Saturday Snippets where “Bluebell” is my prompt.

On with the show…

Chart Hits 1991 Part Two – Extreme, Lenny Kravitz, Whitney Houston, Bryan Adams

William Price King meets the Music Legends – Dionne Warwick – Into the 1970s

The Travel Column Rewind with D.G. Kaye – #Cruises Part Two – Ship Tips, Deals and Dining

Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiency – Vitamin B12 combined with Vitamin E – Beef, Broccoli, Eggs, Bananas and Wholegrains

1993 – 40th, MR2, M People, Mrs Doubtfire

East London on Flipboard | East London, Croydon, Fraud

1994 – New Responsibilities, Toronto, family loss, Celine Dion and Four Weddings and a Funeral

Food Therapy Rewind- Beans – 12,000 years of history that we know about by Sally Cronin

-#Fantasy – A Threat from the Past (The White Dragon Saga) by Paul Cude

Book Reviews Round Up March 2022 – #Romance Jan Sikes, #Scifi Richard Dee, #Thriller Stevie Turner, #Africa Wilbur Smith, #Poetry Frank Prem, #Fantasy Paul Cude

#Spotlight Sharon Marchisello/ Marie Sinadjin, #Refugees John Howell, #Writers Gwen Plano, #Countrymusic Jan Sikes, #Peekytoecrab New Vintage Kitchen

#Fantasy – Good Liniment (The Hat Book 5) by C.S. Boyack

Share an Extract from your latest book – #YA #Fantasy – Golden Healer (The Curse of Time Book 2) by M. J. Mallon

Personal Recommendations – #Children – #Travel Darlene Foster, #Safety Miriam Hurdle, #Mystery Elizabeth Merry

Personal Recommendations -#Paranormal Jan Sikes, #Historical Ailish Sinclair, #Poetry Balroop Singh

Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Car Expenses and The Ostrich

– Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Dog owning and Clever Cats


Thanks for all your support and I hope you will join me again next week… thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Memories, Music and Movies – 1994 – New Responsibilities, Toronto, family loss, Celine Dion and Four Weddings and a Funeral

I cannot remember a time when music and movies where not a part of my life.

1994 – New Responsibilities, Toronto, family loss, Haddaway and Four Weddings and a Funeral

1994 was certainly the year where the focus was on work. The organisation moved into a brand new building in the London Docklands and it was one of the first of the office blocks to be built after Canary Wharf and the Light Railway was completed. The area looked more like a building site and very different to what it looks like today.

East London on Flipboard | East London, Croydon, Fraud

I became Customer Services Director for the London franchise. I was lucky to be provided with a modern purpose built customer service centre which evolved into one of the few 24/7 operations in the UK later in the year. This required a massive recruitment drive to hire personnel to man the phones, and the development of a management training programme to build an effective team as quickly as possible. With the additional responsibility for credit control and getting to grips with a new billing system it was a challenging but very fulfiling work environment.

We were an international management team with colleagues from Canada and the USA which was a productive exchange of work practices and as our telephony customer base increased rapidly we needed all the expertise we could bring together. David had moved on to our corporate offices in Watford with responsibilities for operations, so a change too in our personal lives, with less time together during the week.

We still had some customers who felt that our approach to those who failed to pay their monthly bills, by disconnecting their service within a couple of weeks of non payment too strict, and on one memorable occasion rifle shots were fired at the installation department windows on the same floor as the customer service centre… I received quite a few death threats which were left on my answerphone overnight.  These as you can imagine inspired me to get on with my job for the day, especially if I had not had my first coffee of the day.  One hit a little close to home by remarking that they knew the car I drove and to watch out! This required extra surveillance for the next few months coming and going to work.

Sadly in the May we lost David’s mother Joan. She was a lovely person and had made me feel welcome into the family from the first time I met her. She is still much missed.

In the summer I went to Toronto for a week to observe one of our parent companies customer services operations in action which provided some additional insight into running the rapidly growing London operation I was responsible for. A welcome break and a chance to catch up with some friends.

I really only listened to the music in the car in 1994 and also during parties we enjoyed throwing throughout the year when the kitchen became a dance floor.

There were some memorable hits in the UK charts that year including ..Celine Dion The Power of Love, Elton John and RuPaul Don’t Go Breaking My Heart, Bruce Springsteen Streets of Philadelphia, Take That Everything Changes, Haddaway Rock My Heart, Wet Wet Wet Love Is All Around, Luther Vandross and Mariah Carey Endless Love, ), Boyzone Love Me for a Reason.

Here is The Power of Love by Celine Dion released at the end of 1993 in Canada and the US and hitting the UK Charts in 1994 –CelineDion 

Buy Celine Dion’s music: Amazon

We did manage to see some of the movies during this busy year including: Pulp Fiction, The Shawshank Redemption, Forrest Gump, Interview with the Vampire, Little Women, The Lion King, Speed, Four Weddings and a Funeral.

Here is Wet Wet Wet with Love is All Around from the film Four Weddings and a Funeral – Mr.Oldies 

Buy Four Weddings and a Funeral: Amazon


Thanks for joining me on this trip down Memory Lane and I hope you will drop in next weekend for 1995 and 1996.. Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Memories, Music and Movies – 1993 – 40th, MR2, M People, Mrs Doubtfire

I cannot remember a time when music and movies where not a part of my life.

1993 – 40th, MR2, M People, Mrs Doubtfire

It is 1993 and in the February I hit the big 40. At the beginning of the year, I looked at my wish list as most of us do before hitting a milestone birthday. One of my top ‘things to do before I am 40’ was to own a racy little number.

As a teenager I had a number of boyfriends who owned sports cars. Whilst they may have anticipated something a little different when I suggested that we adjourn to the car park at Clarence Parade after a date, they were disappointed. I only wanted their car keys! I had spent many a happy hour in a Triumph Spitfire or a later model TR4 doing circuits of the car park.

I did not get my official driving licence until 1980 and had driven for both work and pleasure in the intervening years. We had enjoyed many road trips when living in Texas including across from Houston to New Mexico, a distance of 650 miles without stopping except for gas.

I had returned from Houston with one of my most prized souvenir; a 1985 dark grey metallic Mercury Topaz. Despite initial problems finding unleaded petrol when we returned to the UK with it 1987, I had driven happily for the last six years. I was lucky to find a mechanic who was an American car fan who would come and pick it up from my office in the Docklands, service and deliver back to me by the end of the day.

As I approached the big day in February, I happened to mention to him that I was thinking of selling the Topaz and buying a sports car so wanted mine in tip top condition. He looked off into the distance for a moment before suggesting that we do a swap.

Turned out that he had a MR2 Mk1 that he drove and he had recently had a baby and wanted a family car. He loved my Topaz and the price was around the same. Bingo… Two days before my 40th I was a proud owner of the small but perfectly formed MR2 in black with a T-bar sunroof. I was in heaven.

There was not much room in that little car but I loved driving it and although I have had another MK 2 since then, one day, provided I can get in and out of it; I will be looking for a reconditioned MK1 to drive into the sunset in.

Both of us were working flat out but I would listen to the radio and tapes on the drive from our home in South Woodford to the Docklands. That year the charts seemed to be all about love.

Whitney Houston had three hits that year in the charts; I Will Always Love You, I’m Every Woman and I Have Nothing. Meat Loaf I’d Do Anything For Love, UB40 I Can’t Help Falling In Love With You, HaddawayWhat is Love, Elton John and Kiki Dee with True Love and to counteract all the lovin’ was Gloria Gaynor and I Will Survive! Others songs were about travelling including Billy Joel River of Dreams, Pet Shop BoysGo West, Lenny KravitzAre You Gonna Go My Way. I was an M People fan so I have chosen One Night in Heaven which combines both love and travel! MPeopleVEVO 

Buy M People Music Amazon

As you will have gathered if you have been following this series is that film was very important to both David and I. This year was particularly good for movies and included Jurassic Park, Schindler’s List, Philadelphia, The Piano, Groundhog Day, Mrs. Doubtfire, The Firm, Sleepless in Seattle, Indecent Proposal, Farewell my Concubine (stunning), The Age of Innocence, Alive and Tombstone.

One of my favourite clips from Mrs Doubtfire includes Robin Williams doing the vacuuming. This by the way is a great way to exercise!

Buy Mrs. Doubtfire. Amazon


Thank you for joining me on this walk down Memory Lane and I hope you will join me again tomorrow for more. Sally

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up- 21st – 27th March 2022 – Hits 1991, Podcast, Book Reviews, Poetry, Health and Humour

Welcome to the round up of posts you may have missed during the week.

A glorious week of sunshine and we have been taking full advantage of the weather to get the garden tidied and readying the pots for replanting later in the month… we have another very cold snap this week but hopefully after that the major frosts will be over.

Amazing responses by people around the world to the Ukraine crisis and there are some  signs that the courageous defiance of the forces and people on the frontline, diplomacy and sanctions might bring an end to the conflict but it amazes me that one man out of over 7 billion has been allowed the power to inflict this much destruction.

John Howell celebrated wonderful people doing all they can to help refugees from the Ukraine with support, essential supplies and transport in Poland. John Howell. Good News

In other news on the homefront

One of my offline projects in recent weeks was an interesting assignment, narrating a video/slide presentation on the history of refractive eye surgery. Based on an award winning presentation from 2021 by renowned opthamologist Patrick I. Condon. I certainly found it fascinating to see some of the procedures and considering corrective eye surgery is only 200 years old it has come a long way in a short space of time.

If you are interested in watching here is the link on YouTubeThe History of Refractive Surgery by Patrick I. Condon

My thanks to William Price King for joining me on The Breakfast Show and for his weekly show featuring music legends, Debby Gies for finding the funnies and this week Daniel Kemp shared his humour in an Open Mic Night.

Coming up this week Debby continues her series on cruising holidays on Monday’s Travel Column, and Carol Taylor will be here on Wednesday with Cook from Scratch to prevent Deficiency and this week it is Vitamin B12. In the meantime you can catch up with Carol’s own posts on her blog.. always interesting and entertaining.

Carol shares her weekly round up with some helpful and interesting post on Cuisine in the Bahamas, 10 common food substitutes, preparing Tom Kha Gai (Thai Chicken Soup), Monday Musings and Saturday Snippets… head over to be entertained.

CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 20th -26th March 2022-Monday Musings, Health, A-Z World Cuisine,The Bahamas , Food Substitutes and Saturday Snippets where “Mother” is my prompt.

On with the show….

The Breakfast Show with William Price King and Sally Cronin – Chart Hits 1991 Part One – R.E.M, Bryan Adams, C&C Music Factory, Rod Stewart

– William Price King meets the Music Legends – Dionne Warwick – A hit filled 1960s and beyond

#MirrorCinquain – Fire and Water

Tales from the Garden – The Last Summer Ball and the Winter Fairy – Part Two

1991 – Perfume, Posh Bird, Diana Ross and The Commitments

1992 – Margaritas, London Docklands, Roy Orbison and The Crying Game

#Poetry #Fantasy – The Garden Black and other speculations (Free Verse Poetry) by Frank Prem

Food Therapy – Green Tea – One small leaf with terrific health benefits by Sally Cronin


Blogger Weekly 27th March 2022 – #Interview Janice Spina and Allan Hudson, #Reviews D.L. Finn, #Interview Colleen Chesebro and Elizabeth Gauffreau, #Timecapsule Jacquie Biggar, #Characters Richard Dee

Share an Extract from your latest book  – #Psychological #Thriller – Scam by Stevie Turner

robbie a ghost and his gold

#Paranormal #Historical #BoerWar A Ghost and his Gold by Roberta Eaton Cheadle

New Book on the Shelves – #Family – Coming of Age – Hope for the Tarnished by Ann Chiappetta

Personal Recommendations -#Paranormal #Thriller JP Mclean, #WWII Marina Osipova, #Crime Jane Risdon

Personal Recommendations – #Psychological #Thriller Lucinda E. Clarke, #Memoir Jaye Marie, #Poetry Joyce Murphy

Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Illegible and Tennis Balls

March 24th 2022 – Another Open Mic Night with author Daniel Kemp


Thanks for dropping in today and I hope you will join me again next week… thanks Sally.

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Weekly Round Up – 14th -20th March 2022. 90s Hits, Cruise holidays, Vitamin B6, Earthquakes, New Zealand, Podcast, Poetry and Book reviews

Welcome to the round up of posts that you might have missed here on Smorgasbord this week.

How quickly the weeks are flying by and hard to believe the Spring Equinox is just around the corner. It should be a time of joy and new beginnings but unfortunately for millions around the world either victims of conflict or opportunistic pathogens, the day will pass without the will to celebrate.

People around the world are however, uniting in offering homes, much needed aid and support and in the news today…Daily Mail

A group of British firefighters are on their way to support firefighters in Ukraine, stocked with more than 5,000 items of fire and rescue kit. In social media footage, 22 vehicles were captured beginning their journey from London as another 22 fire engines also left Ashford, Kent, as part of a humanitarian aid campaign. The convoy of trucks will make its way into Poland, where fire engines will be able to cross the border and support firefighters in Ukraine. 

Millions have been raised by not just celebrities who are donating personally or leading donation drives but ordinary people determined to do their bit. There are a number of funds set up for donations but please do check them out thoroughly before donating to confirm their status.

My thanks as always to William Price King, Debby Gies and Carol Taylor for their amazing contributions and this week William joined me on the Breakfast Show for hits from 1990 and then shared the early years of the amazing Dionne Warwick. Debby shared her top tips for planning your cruise holiday in the Travel Column and Carol cooked up a storm with ingredients containing Vitamin B6 in Cooking from Scratch to prevent Deficiency… If you missed any of Carol’s interesting and entertaining posts on her own blog…. here is the link.

CarolCooks2 weekly roundup… 13th -19th March 2022-Monday Musings, Health, A-Z World Cuisine, Belgium, Glace Cherries and Saturday Snippets where a “Heart” is my prompt.

My thanks to you for all your visits, likes, comments and shares… it is always appreciated.

On with the show

Chart Hits 1990 Part Two – Phil Collins, Aaron Neville and Linda Ronstadt, Michael Bolton, Janet Jackson

William Price King meets the Music Legends – Dionne Warwick – The Early Years

The Travel Column Rewind – with D.G. Kaye – #Cruising – Reports and Tips Part One

Plums, Fruit, Harvest, Organic, Healthy, Fresh

Sally Cronin and Carol Taylor – Cook from Scratch to prevent nutritional deficiency – Vitamin B6 – Prunes, Chicken Tagine, Sweet Potatoes

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Podcast – Tales from the Garden – The Last Summer Ball and the Winter Fairy – Part One

1989 – Houston Reunion, San Francisco, Earthquake, Guns N’ Roses, When Harry Met Sally

1990 -Advertising, Chinese Food, Family Celebrations, Elton John and Pretty Woman

Title: Russian Dancers Artist: Edgar Degas (French, Paris 1834–1917 Paris)
Date: 1899 via

Colleen Chesebro’s Tuesday Weekly Challenge – #Etheree – Exuberance

Food Therapy Rewind – Brown Rice so much more than just a grain by Sally Cronin

#Writing Traci Kenworth, #Audiobooks #Children Robbie Cheadle, #Review Elizabeth Gauffreau, #Interview Judith Barrow, #Blogging Hugh Roberts

#Adventure #Thriller #Africa – Legacy of War – Wilbur Smith with David Churchill

#YA – Amanda in Malta: The Sleeping Lady (An Amanda Travels Adventure Book 8) by Darlene foster –

#Contemporary – Matilda Windsor Is Coming Home by Anne Goodwin

Personal Recommendations – #Thriller Jane Buckley, #Thriller Jack Talbot, #Supernatural Yvette Calleiro

Malcolm Allen – Mother substitutes and Potholes

Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Long climb and Estate Planning Posted on March 17, 2022


Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will join me again next week… Sally