Every Entertaining Book You'll Ever Need

Books are essential to have in every home. They make bedtimes easier, help us unwind from our hectic day, and can even be conversation pieces when guests come over. Books can also be useful when entertaining. We have compiled a list of our favorite books ideal for for when family or friends come to visit. Whether you just closed on your first home or are looking for a personal housewarming gift, there is something on this list to suit anyone. Get togethers just got easier!

 

For Smaller Get Togethers

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For Two

This book is part kitchen manual, part cookbook and created with two-person household in mind. The authors worked to scale down the trickiest dishes, including desserts. Cooking for Two gives readers creative solutions for “foolproof and delicious meals”. This book is a great option for the who know their way around the kitchen and those who are just now getting acquainted with it.

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Just the Two of Us

This book has an overall chic aesthetic and again, ideal for small households. It gives you access to 100+ recipes from some of the most innovative chefs, bakers, & even food stylists. Cherry Bombe is perfect for the young professional or the you like to keep up with the trends. Dinner that is both delicious and Instagram worthy? That’s a win for all.

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For the Smaller Group

Dining In offers readers 125 recipes that are effortlessly beautiful dishes and best of all, full of quick-trick techniques. We definitely recommend this book for the busy , “no-nonsense” professional. The inside is clean, minimalistic and easy to read.


For the Love of Grilling

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When You Need to Impress

Martha Stewart’s Eating Clean was phenomena! So you can imagine our excitement when we found out about this one. In this book she follows her usual style of providing essential tips and techniques, helpful for both experienced outdoor cooks and those not so experienced using a grill. You can find traditional recipes like like pulled-pork sandwiches alongside recipes with that Martha Stewart twist.

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Endless Recipes

With more than 250 recipes and tips, the authors weren’t joking when they called it the Ultimate Grilling Cookbook. This book is perfect for those who love to grill and for “foodies”. They have delicious, unique recipes such as the Green Chile Cheeseburger as well as traditional recipes like Chicken Kabobs.

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Get Ready…

Prepare your tastebuds for 72 of the tastiest recipes with country flair! The author drew inspiration from cities like Memphis, Nashville, St. Louis, and even Cleveland to create this masterpiece. Michael Symon’s Playing With Fire offers guidance on working with different styles of grills and smokers, and choosing aromatic woods for smoking. This book is a must have for those who consider themselves “grill masters”.

For the Pop Culture Fanatics

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Learn Step By Step

We have all saved one (or more) of Tasty’s videos when we came across them on our Facebook page. Thats is why we all rejoiced when Tasty created and put together 150 recipes. This book helps the reader master the cooking basics and make food for all to love. From vegetarian snacks to crowd-pleasing desserts, this book is a must-have for the more novice cook who loves to entertain.

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The Encore

Chrissy Teigen, and her tweets, are currently part of pop-culture but her cookbooks are all business. Her recipes are guaranteed to please even the pickiest of eaters. She adds her personal touch to each recipe and that is what makes this book stand out. For those who are fans, stores like Barnes & Noble even offer autographed versions of this book!

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Cozy Home Cooked Meals

Home remodeling shows have become our fountain of inspiration for all this is home decor. Now Joanna Gaines shares 125 classic recipes from breakfast, lunch, and dinner. She made sure to include small plates, snacks, and desserts. Magnolia Table is for those who love American classics.


For Those Who Prefer Dessert For Dinner

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#trendy

This book shares Christina Tosi’s fantastic desserts recipes.Recipes featuring a modern twist on childhood classics to create desserts such as the compost cookie, crack pie, and cereal milk ice cream. Every dessert connoisseur needs to have this collection in their home!

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Guilt-Free Dessert

Love Bake Nourish is for the health conscious who still love dessert. Author, Amber Rose, uses fruit and honey to give sweetness while substituting unbleached flour for other options such as buckwheat, spelt, and rye. Amber creates traditional desserts like Spiced Carrot Cake with a crumb topping, cupcakes, and Coconut & Passion Fruit Tart with more natural ingredients.

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Oh la la…

Tartine is the most useful dessert book for entertaining. Guests will be amazed by these delicious and seemingly intricate recipes. Luckily, the authors created this book with easy-to-follow recipes for the home kitchen.

For the Literary Obsessed

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Modern Day Drinks

This book is definitely a conversation starter. If you are planning on having a dinner party, this is a must-have. 60 of the world's most inspirational women are the inspiration behind this cool and fun collection of drink recipes. Free the Tipple has drinks inspired trailblazing women who mad waves in their respective fields, including Frida Kahlo, Serena Williams, Virginia Woolf, Zaha Hadid, Marlene Dietrich, Zadie Smith, and more

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Magical Drinks

Classic drinks such as the Black Russian and Dry Martini lend way to Harry Potter inspired drinks like Snape's Overflowing Cauldron. Harry Potter fans needs this in their collection! Each recipe contains a basic list of ingredients with simple instructions and even suggestions on which glasses to serve these drinks in. It’s magical!

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So Witty

This book is as witty as the title sounds. Tequila Mockingbird features 65 drink recipes with “wry commentary on history's most beloved novels”. This book is perfect for game night or get together since it also showcases bar bites, drinking games, and more.

Hair 4 You

Up and coming is a sexy phrase to describe a neighborhood in transition. There have been some investments made but they are not necessarily up to their full potential. The Bayshore Arts District falls into this description.

There have been brave visionaries who have taken the risk and invested in this community: Rebecca Maddox, Adam Kelley, Alex McEwing, Diane Sullivan to name a few. These business owners have been instrumental in bringing change to Bayshore. NBBR has been here for years now but we find it funny when other realtors who don’t live here, were not there at the beginning of the struggle come into the community, snap a few pictures, and tell people to come and play here. We live, spend our money, and are invested in Bayshore. We encourage people to support. To be a part of the action. Denise, the owner of Hair 4 You, has done just that.


It was drizzling and uncharacteristically windy the day we caught up with Denise. A male client was leaving and another client was in her chair. She was busy but graciously discussed with us life and the start of her business. She has been in the hair business for 35 years. She is soft-spoken and kind. A mother and grandmother of two, Denise says part of her strength comes from the support of her loved ones.


NBBR: How long ago did you get into the business?

Denise: I got into doing hair will I was in high school. I went to a technical school and in my junior year, I started cosmetology class.

NBBR: What prompted you to get into hair?

Denise: My guidance counselor asked me what I wanted to do. I was never a “book-type” of person; I was always hands on so I thought about it. My father and I talked about it and he suggested I do something that I like. I liked doing hair so I got into cosmetology. When I got into the class, the first year was more book/technical [learning]. When it came to the hands-off stuff, that’s what really got me.

NBBR: I feel in this line of business, you have to have a passion for it. It kind of reminds me of real estate, where a lot of people use it for additional income or get into it for the money. With hair, you have to love it; you’re on your feet all day. Do you notice that?

Denise: You have to have a knack for it. A lot of people want to get into doing hair to profit but if you’re not good at it, you’re not going to create a clientele. If you’re not passionate about helping people look good and you’re only in it to see how much you can charge people for a service, you’re not going to make it.

NBBR: How long have you had your own business?

Denise: I just opened in October.

NBBR: What was the scariest part of opening up your own business?

Denise: People don’t like if you move a lot. I worked in one salon for 25 years but I still worried about my clients.

NBBR: What has been the best experience of working in this business for so long?

Denise: You know, I have grown. I have a lot of good customers. Some I’ve had for 20 years. It was good they all followed me. When I finally [left], they said, “you should have done this a long time ago” and that makes me feel good. They try to get me other customers, that makes me feel really good.

NBBR: Just like you have followed them through their different life stages, it must have felt amazing they followed you through this one.

Denise: A lot of my customers have been with me since my kids were little. My daughter got married three years ago, has two kids. It’s almost like a family thing now. They come in and ask me, “how are the grandbabies?” “How is your daughter?” You know, they know the struggles I have been through.

NBBR: What inspired you to open in Bayshore when certain people still consider this community a “business risk”?

Denise: What inspired me was when I met Diane [Sullivan] and she was telling me all the upcoming things, then I got excited. It was time for new things, new adventures.

NBBR: If you could give a piece of advice to your younger self, what would that advice be?

Denise: My son, when I was going through some difficulties, told me, “mommy, don’t be afraid. Life is about change. You have to step out on faith. When I was younger, I was timid. Always afraid to do something. When I look back, I would say that. “Don’t be afraid. Life is about changes.” If you fail, if you fall, get back up and start all over again. Life is a revolving door, an unending circle. Keep striving to do the best you can. That’s what I would tell my younger self.

NBBR: For anyone looking to start their own business, do you have any advice?

Denise: Because I have been in the hair industry, I knew the ins and outs of what I should and shouldn’t do, I would start with this great organization called SCORE Naples. It’s free advice from professionals who have retired. It’s really helpful and it’s all free. Always get advice and make sure you have everything you need to start your business.

NBBR: Thank you. For those looking to make an appointment, what kind of services do you offer?

Denise: I offer all hair services: hair coloring, highlights, relaxers, perms and I work on all types of hair.

We want to thank Denise for taking the time to speak with us. If you need any kind of hair services, we suggest you pay her a visit at The Gardenia House or call (239) 919-3139.

Salon Hours are Tuesday through Saturday 8:30 AM to 5:30 AM.

Rental Scam Red Flags

It’s that time of year again: rental time! For Naples natives, it means more annual rentals will become available and at lower rates. For tourists, it means they get to enjoy Florida weather at off-season prices. It’s not all sunshine here though. With this time of year comes rental scams. When we think of rental scams, we usually think of the less educated or elderly as victims but according to a study conducted by the Better Business Bureau, 25 to 34-year-olds with a college degree are the victims of this kind of scam. In fact, in a study done by the FBI in 2014, they found a person is four times more likely to become a victim of fraud than a victim of violent crime, larceny, motor vehicle theft, and burglary combined! Scammers use effective sales techniques in order to scam their victims. We’ve seen these ads firsthand and have compiled a list of red flags you need to look out for.

1. The rental ad has several grammatical mistakes. It could be a sign, the scammer is not in the U.S. This could also mean the ad itself is vague because they might not be familiar with the area.

2. The “owner” is a master of disguise. They have no online presence. They will not give out a name, phone number or email address for that matter. Yet they assure you they can be trusted and they can talk a big game? Our suggestion? Move to the next rental ad!

3. You can’t seem to get a physical address. The ad has a description of the area but no address. You speak with the “owner” and still no address because of one reason or another. This happened with one of my listings. The ad said it was a home for rent in the Naples Park area close to beaches but no address. Why? Because if the person who was interested would have driven by, they would have seen my huge For Sale sign with my phone number.

4. You can’t see the property in person. In some cases, seeing the property will prove nearly impossible. The “owner” is out of the country, the person who put up the ad only represents the property but does not have access to a key, the owner is hard to reach, etc. Don’t sign any “lease” or send money without seeing the property and having confirmation the person is who they say they are.

5. Pressure to sign the lease or put a deposit. This is a high-pressure sales tactic to make you feel like it’s now or never. We’re sure there has been interest but don’t ever send money without looking at the property, confirming they own/represent the property, and receiving a lease. Without being said, don’t sign a lease or application

6. The price is too good to be true. A rental scam is a numbers' game. The internet gives us access to an abundance of information. In order to stand out and entice the most amount of people possible, Scammers will advertise a price that is almost

7. They want the money now. A scammer will always be too eager to receive money. Be on high alert if they are asking for cash, money orders, or a wire.

Top 8 Tips on Saving Money (and your credit) for Your First Home

We recently posted about investing in yourself and it seemed to have resonated with a lot of people. It could be because we are still at the beginning of the year and there is still follow through with the resolutions we made for ourselves. Some people join a gym, others start a savings account, and then there are people who are determined to buy their first home. Talk about investing in yourself! Stick to your goal. Almost all of the resolutions we set for ourselves are long-term. So why buy a home when you can rent? I mean you’re not sure you’re going to be living in Naples, Chicago, Boston, etc. forever. 

The answer is obvious: When you rent, you are investing in someone else’s financial future. If you don’t plan on living in the city forever, then I would look into rentals in the area. If you are able to rent out your property for a much higher amount than your mortgage, then it might be worth looking into. For example, I purchased a condo this year. My mortgage is  about $500 less than what the rent was on my apartment. I used to pay close to $1,500 in rent. My mortgage and HOA payment put my living expense at $1,053. My mortgage is an affordable payment I can make every month and when I am done fixing it up, I can rent it out for $400-$500 more than my mortgage payment.  So even if I move, I will still enjoy tax benefits from this property (since my mortgage, interest, and property taxes are all deductible on my income tax), have the additional income for savings, AND have someone else who rents pay off my mortgage while my property is most likely to increase in value with time. How awesome is that?! Of course, I am a Realtor® and I had the help of my Broker to determine where to invest. I had to wait three years into my Real Estate career to be able to buy. Every year I told myself I was going to buy but my actions said otherwise. So stick to it!  Real Estate is a strong foundation for people to build on their financial wealth for the future. We are here to help! You can always call or stop by to discuss how we can help get you started on the path to homeownership. 

If you need some ideas for saving money or help with credit, here are a few tips: 

1.  Start by checking your credit score. 

Here is How:  Your banks offer it, websites like Credit Karma do too.  Your credit score affects your ability to buy as well as your loan’s interest rate. 

2. Figure out your Debt to Income ratio. 

Here is How: Add all your monthly bills like cable, power, etc. and divide by your gross total income (income before taxes). This equals your Debt to Income ratio. The lower this ratio is, the better you look to lenders because you are considered less of a risk. 

3. If you have too much debt or need to save in order to buy, we suggest creating a realist, sustainable budget. 

Here is How: Start with small changes and progress from there.  I suggest using a budget app like Intuit’s Mint. You get to set your budget for expenses like shopping, credit cards, insurance, and everything else. It alerts you when you have gone over your budget and best of all, it allows you to stay on track when it comes to your money. 

4. Plan for major purchases or expenses. 

Here is How: If you have birthdays, holidays or big bills coming up, start saving ahead of time. Groceries can get expensive as well so make sure to take advantage of digital savings. Grocery stores like Lucky’s and Publix let you see their weekly savings so you can plan your meals ahead of time and avoid last minute restaurant trips. You can save even more on the Lucky’s app by earning $5 for every 100 points you earn. $5 off my grocery bill? Yes, please! 

5. Open up a savings account whether it is at your current bank or an online bank

Here is How: Banks like Chase offer incentives for opening up savings accounts but online banks like Ally offer a high Annual Percentage Yield (APY refers to how much money you earn on a deposit over the year). Once you have opened up your savings account, start putting away 10% of your residual income away and increase up to 15% whenever you are financially able to do so. The secret to success is to set up the savings account for automatic deposit. 

6. Low credit score? Start to pay off that pesky debt. 

Here is How:  Start by taking a look at your credit report. Are there mistakes or late payments?  You can dispute them online or via mail.  Does one credit card charge you a higher interest than the other? Pay that one off first. Make sure to make every payment moving forward on time. 

7. No credit? You can work on improving that. 

Here is How: There are options like E-credable that allow your bill payments to be used to create a credit report and credit score.  This option allows you build your credit without accruing any more debt by taking out credits cards. 

8. Cut out unnecessary expenses. 

Here is How: The subscription box(es) you love so much? Unless it’s life or death, cancel them.  It will be much more gratifying to receive a box at your own house than the place you rent. Don’t think a subscription box can make a difference? According to inc.com, the average subscriber to box deliveries receives at least seven boxes and has another 12 on their wish list! I am subscribed to four and the yearly amount I spend is close to $1,200! This does not include my unhealthy Starbucks obsession. Another way to save is cutting off your cable. I do not watch a lot of t.v. but there are t.v. streaming services I use for a whole lot less than what Comcast cable would charge me. If you decide to cut off your cable, you are not alone. A November 2017 Leichtman Research Group collection of data showed that in the third quarter, large satellite companies and cable operators lost about 405,000 users! 

We hope these tips help but if you need additional information or have any questions, as always, our doors are open. You can contact us at (239) 228-5348 or stop by at your new office location: 3200 Bayshore Drive, Naples, FL 34112.