Tag Archives: Tips & Tricks

Baseball: How To Play The Game: The Official Playing & Coaching Manual of MLB Book Review & Giveaway

Baseball: How To Play The Game: The Official Playing & Coaching Manual of Major League Baseball [Amazon] by Pete Williams. As spring training has just got underway, we’re reminded that its time to start thinking about little league too (like how I made that jump?!).  In all seriousness there are books that are just designed to look super pretty and gather dust on a coffee table, this isnt one of those books.  This books puts the best of the best Major League Baseball players right into an educational break out of drills, tips, advice and coaching.  From every aspect of this game there is a superstar right there giving you basic advice, talking about tips and highlighting key points for playing that position.

The comprehensive guide has fully illustrated with action photos of MLB stars illustrating key points and drills for each defensive position, this book also includes special tips from MLB players on batting, base running, the rules of the game, and coaching.  This will be an indispensable resource for anyone who wants to coach or play the game.

It really covers it all: Batting, Pitching, Base running and sliding, Specific drills for playing all defensive positions, Coaching and rules, Offensive and defensive strategy. Partial list of Big League tips on How to Play the Game: Tony Gwynn (hitting), Sammy Sosa (judging fly balls), Bernie Williams (playing the outfield), Mark Grace (approach to hitting), Alex Rodriguez (fielding ground balls), Jeff Bagwell (hitting), Roberto Alomar (fielding ground balls), Jaret Wright (pitching mechanics), Edgar Renteria (how to play SS), John Lackey (improving your pitching), Carlos Delgado (mastering 1B), Rocco Baldelli (basic approach at plate), Cristian Guzman (fielding ground balls), Danny Kolb (good approach on the mound), Dontrelle Willis (pitching strategies), Torii Hunter (playing the outfield), Jason Marquis (pitching with control), Chone Figgins (sliding), Orlando Cabrera (improving your game), Gary Bennett (becoming a better catcher), Ervin Santana (pitching under pressure), Mark Teixeira (playing 1B), Ryan Howard (hitting), Joey Gathright (playing the OF), Troy Tulowitzki (succeeding at the plate), Joel Zumaya (pitching with poise), Josh Johnson (pitching with confidence).

How to win it… Contest ends 11:59pm EST. February 25nd, 2011.

You must comment telling us who would you want to learn from? please include some method for us to contact you in the comment (twitter or email)

You get 1 extra entry for following us on twitter – twitter.com/dadarocks

You get 1 extra entry for tweeting about this contest (you can do this daily). Must contain the following information:

@dadarocks #MLB #Baseball – http://dad.tc/hpF7Fy  and you must also comment with the link to your twitter message.

Example: I want to win a #MLB #Baseball How to play the game book Thanks to @dadarocks – http://dad.tc/hpF7Fy

You get 1 extra entry for becoming a Fan on facebook –facebook.com/dadarocks you must comment that you’re a fan (and leave a little note on the wall)

You get 1 extra entry for suggesting to your friends to become fans of DaDa Rocks  (and leave a little note on the wall) — under the logo of DaDa Rocks is Suggest to Friends name

You get 1 extra entry for subscribing to our Feedburner digest mailing (right side subscribe by email) – you must also comment that you’ve subscribed

You get 1 extra entry for becoming a friend on Google Connect (right side below facebook box) – you must also comment that you’ve become a friend

You will have 24 hours to reply before we pick another winner!

Disclaimer: Thanks to Universe Publishing for the prize for this raffle. It’s also limited to the USA too.

Family travel tips from the expert Amy Tara Koch

I had the great pleasure of doing a quick interview with Amy Tara Koch, the author of Bump It Up, trend reporter to NBC, contributer to SELF, New York Times, People’s Mom and Baby, Travel & Leisure, and many others – yah she’s totally an expert on all things style and travel.

Admittedly the first line about I’m following you is awkward but its about Twitter – lol…

We went over some basics of traveling with expecting a baby, traveling with kids of all ages, and tips for what to bring on the plane.

Of course the age old question how do you defuse the angry mob on the plane when your baby/kid just wont stop crying.

Well I could write out all the questions and answers but that would take all the fun out of watching the video.

Freerider from Mountain Buggy is set to hit stores shortly

Once you’re kids get old enough to say they want to walk more… instead of getting into the stroller you start to look for options for them standing while you’re pushing like a roller board, but this is the a great option that allows you to not only push them along but also unhook the freerider to put it into stroller mode.

I really like how this video shows the dad skateboarding while the kiddo is using the freerider.

Burgers that rock! Best Old-Time Burgers

The best burgers in New York City in my opinion are Shake Shack – its as if god himself opened it and declared it AWESOME! While I didnt steal this recipe from Shake Shack – I’m told by many this is as close as your going to get it without waiting on an hour and half line on a day like today! I did however lift this recipe from American’s test kitchen (so blame them if its not 100% and shake shack you can blame them too if everyone starts cooking this at home!)


Makes 4 burgers

Sirloin steak tips are also labeled “flap meat” by some butchers. Flank steak can be used in its place. This recipe yields juicy medium to medium-well burgers. It’s important to use very soft buns. If doubling the recipe, process the meat in three batches in step 2. Because the cooked burgers do not hold well, fry four burgers and serve them immediately before frying more. Or, cook them in two pans. Extra patties can be frozen for up to 2 weeks. Stack the patties, separated by parchment, and wrap them in three layers of plastic wrap. Thaw burgers in a single layer on a baking sheet at room temperature for 30 minutes before cooking.

Ingredients
  • 10 ounces sirloin steak tips , cut into 1-inch chunks (see note)
  • 6 ounces beef short ribs (boneless), cut into 1-inch chunks
  • Kosher salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 4 hamburger buns , soft (see note)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vegetable oil
  • 4 slices American cheese
  • Thinly sliced onion
  • 1 recipe Classic Burger Sauce (see related Serve With recipe)
Instructions
  1. Place beef chunks on baking sheet in single layer, leaving 1/2 inch of space around each chunk. Freeze meat until very firm and starting to harden around edges but still pliable, 15 to 25 minutes.
  2. Place half of meat in food processor and pulse until meat is coarsely ground, 10 to 15 one-second pulses, stopping and redistributing meat around bowl as necessary to ensure beef is evenly ground. Transfer meat to baking sheet, overturning bowl and without directly touching meat. Repeat grinding with remaining meat. Spread meat over sheet and inspect carefully, discarding any long strands of gristle or large chunks of hard meat or fat.
  3. Gently separate ground meat into 4 equal mounds. Without picking meat up, with your fingers gently shape each mound into loose patty 1/2 inch thick and 4 inches in diameter, leaving edges and surface ragged. Season top of each patty with salt and pepper. Using spatula, flip patties and season other side. Refrigerate while toasting buns.
  4. Melt 1/2 tablespoon butter in heavy-bottomed 12-inch skillet over medium heat until foaming. Add bun tops, cut-side down, and toast until light golden brown, about 2 minutes. Repeat with remaining butter and bun bottoms. Set buns aside and wipe out skillet with paper towels.
  5. Return skillet to high heat; add oil and heat until just smoking. Using spatula, transfer burgers to skillet and cook without moving for 3 minutes. Using spatula, flip burgers over and cook for 1 minute. Top each patty with slice of cheese and continue to cook until cheese is melted, about 1 minute longer.
  6. Transfer patties to bun bottoms and top with onion. Spread 2 teaspoons of burger sauce on each bun top. Cover burgers and serve immediately.
Technique
Better Beef for a Better Burger

Chuck is the usual choice for burgers. For the best flavor and tender juicy texture, we opted for two better cuts of beef: sirloin steak tips (right), which contribute big meaty taste, and well-marbled boneless short ribs (left), which lend the fat that keeps the burgers juicy. For best results, buy ribs with at least as much fat as the rib in the photos…




Sirloin Steak Tips
Sirloin Steak Tips







Boneless Short Ribs
Boneless Short Ribs









Keys to Loosely Packed Patties

FREEZE Chill meat in freezer, separating cubes by at least 1/2 inch, until firm but still pliable, 15 to 25 minutes. Pulse meat in food processor.

SPREAD AND DIVIDE Spread chopped meat over baking sheet and remove any large chunks or stringy connective tissue. Gently separate meat into 4 piles.

SHAPE Without lifting or compressing, gently form meat into thin patties with rough edges and textured surface.



FREEZE
FREEZE






SPREAD AND DIVIDE
SPREAD AND DIVIDE






SHAPE
SHAPE












Getting the Perfect Grind

Underprocessed meat will lead to gristly bits in the finished burgers and patties that don’t hold together. Overprocessed meat becomes rubbery and dense as it cooks. Perfectly ground meat contains pieces that are fine enough to ensure tenderness but coarse enough that the patty will stay loose.




Ground to Perfection
Ground to Perfection






Underprocessed
Underprocessed






Overprocessed
Overprocessed












If you want full details here is the video that it was pinched from… along with the old-time fries



When kids are around its time to clean green

One thing that we’ve made progress on in this world is going green. It’s the buzz terms of the last five years. You’ve heard it from Oprah to the nightly news and unless you’ve got a kid or a pet most likely you’re still cleaning your house/apartment with harsh stuff – and believe sometimes that’s the only thing that will get the job done – but nowadays there is other options…. We’ve been using a combo of bother Dapple and Seven Generation products in our home since Kiddo was born.

A little while ago during Spring Cleaning my wife was stressed with childcare, work, and everything else she does and we decided to call in the heavy hitters at Keep Your Home Clean [Link] – they’ve like the green clean crew.  Between the website, facebook page, and twitter feeds they’re not only selling a service (which by the way is great) but they’re also putting out there resources and tips of how to bring green cleaning into your own home.

Living in the city is awesome for many things but finding quality help sometimes is tough.  Marzena the owner of Keep Your Home Clean and I were introduced on twitter and we had been having a dialog about what we do around the house to keep it clean and really it was about kid friendly clean.  I know my wife had put some efforts into being kid friendly but I wasnt sure just how much until we had the Keep Your Home Clean team come in and do a once over before a visit from my mother in law. The team cleaned house literally – it was spotless and well worth the money. We’ve used the service since that first time as well.

Comfort that Marc was able to play right away after a room was done instead of waiting for fumes or other things to clear out was so great (since we have very little room for him to play in normally its hard to stay out of rooms). Because we really thought the job they did was fantastic I’m offering one lucky MANHATTAN resident a chance to win an 8 hour blog with Keep your home clean.

How to win it… Contest ends 11:59pm EST. July 18, 2010.

You must comment telling us your favorite tip for cleaning green, please include some method for us to contact you in the comment (twitter or email)

You get 1 extra entry for following us on twitter – twitter.com/dada_rocks

You get 1 extra entry for following KYHC on twitter – twitter.com/MarzenZiembicka

You get 1 extra entry for tweeting about this contest (you can do this daily). Must contain the following information:

#greenclean @marzenziembicka @dada_rocks – http://bit.ly/aePopA  and you must also comment with the link to your twitter message.

Example: I want to win the #greenclean from @marzenziembicka & @dada_rocks – http://bit.ly/aePopA

You get 1 extra entry for becoming a Fan on facebook – facebook.com/dada_rocks you must comment that you’re a fan

You get 1 extra entry for becoming a Fan of KYHC on facebook – http://www.facebook.com/pages/New-York-NY/Cleaning-Service-NYC/123343911022694?ref=ts&__a=59 you must comment that you’re a fan

You get 1 extra entry for subscribing to our Feedburner digest mailing (right side subscribe by email) – you must also comment that you’ve subscribed

You get 1 extra entry for becoming a friend on Google Connect (right side below facebook box) – you must also comment that you’ve become a friend

You will have 48 hours to reply before we pick another winner!

Disclaimer: Keep Your House Clean is providing the prize for the raffle.

Father’s Day Gift Guide 2010


2010 Gift Guide

Tali Gillette Dada Cufflinks, Keychain or Pendant

Tali Gillette DaDa Cufflinks, keychain or Pendant are a great way to celebrate being a father.

Apple iPad

(But due on June 7th is an announcement of the new Apple iPhone – so Dad might just want an apple giftcard to do what he wants with)

Jabra Bluetooth HALO headphones

Connect over bluetooth to your iPod Touch/iPhone/iPad or blackberry to
enjoy wireless music and answer phone calls in crystal clear stereo sound

Kodak PULSE Digital Frame

Be able to email new pictures right to
your digital frame (requires wifi).

Diaper Dude

Diaper Dude – Designed for Dads by a Dad. Helps dad stay organized with style!

Sony PS3
Sure you’re man might still be a gamer or totally not – but this game system packs a punch for the entire family doubling as a
BluRay Player

Dinner at Peter Lugers
A New York Institution

Beatles Remastered Collection CD or USB

After all, who doesn’t like the Beatles?

Matching father – son(s) matching bathing suits from Vilebrequin

For classic family memories

Saddleback Leather Briefcase Dark Coffee Brown

Real Men do wear leather

New Digital SLR Camera

Check out the nikon D5000 but for a
little more power Nikon D90 if your a canon family check out EOS Rebel
T2i and with a little more power EOS 50D
Nikon D5000
Nikon D90
Canon T2i
Canon 50D

Underwater Canon PowerShot D10 digital camera or the Kodak PLAYSPORT video camera

D10
Playsport

Logitech Squeezebox Boom

Enjoy Pandora Internet radio in any room with Logitech Squeezebox Boom.

Sh*t My Dad Says

Read the book that got it start as a twitter account and soon to be a CBS sitcom.

The Ulimate Man Chair

Copenhagen Chair but if you want something a little closer to home Pottery Barn’s Manhattan Armchair

Copenhagen Chair
PB Manhattan Armchair

A Family Photo Calendar

This DIY (do it yourself project) is
super easy and fun – http://www.adoramapix.com/products/calendars for awesome quality!

Getaway Just the Two of You

Fom Rivera Maya, Wine tasting in
Sonoma, to just a quick trip to near by shore based spa like CT’s Water’s Edge

Tickets to a Game

Yankees vs Mets subway series is right around the corner in mid june tickets can be found on stubhub.

Friday
Saturday
Sunday

The Art of Shaving

Get that close shave with the art of shaving Contemporary Shaving Set.

Annual Membership to John Allan’s Salon

Give the Gift of pampering! Introduce Dad to a lifestyle and philosophy that has men caring more about their appearance and their personal well being.

Bacon of the Month Club

For the man who loves his swine

The Laurie Berkner Band’s Birthday Party Concerts! [Presale] and CD Giveaway!

It’s Everyone’s Birthday at The Laurie Berkner Band’s Birthday Party Concert!

What do you bring to a Birthday Party Concert?
1. Wear your favorite party hat (Any kind will do!)
2. Picture of a birthday cake (go to our website to download the picture and color it in. Turn it in at the merchandise table area for a chance to win a prize!)
3. An animal for your head because animals have birthdays too.
OPTIONAL: Bring a gift for a child in need by participating in our shoe drive sponsored by UMI shoes. We will be collecting pairs of new or gently used children’s shoes (check your closets!) to be donated to Soles4Souls.

Soles4Souls is a Nashville-based charity that collects shoes from warehouses of footwear companies and the closets of people like you. Since 2005, Soles4Souls has given away over 8 million pairs of new and gently worn shoes in 125 countries, including Haiti, Kenya, Nepal and the United States.

UMI is a children’s shoe company specializing in making quality shoes for growing feet that are not only healthy for kids, but healthy for the planet also. From first step to last, they have a commitment to quality and safety.

FOR COMPLETE DETAILS GO TO OUR WEBSITE!
www.laurieberkner.com

Shows already on sale…

June 27 Community Theatre at Mayo Center for the Performing Arts Morristown, NJ – A Birthday Party Concert!* 100 South St.

    1:00 P.M. and 4:00 P.M.  Tickets $35, available online at www.mayoarts.org or by calling 973.539.8008.

July 18 Tilles Center – A Birthday Party Concert! *  Greenvale, NY

1:00 P.M and 4:00 P.M..  Tickets $25; $35, available online  C.W. Post Campus at www.tillescenter.org or 516.299.3100 .

READ BELOW FOR ALL INFORMATION ON THE NEW YORK CITY & STATEN ISLAND CONCERTS!

1. Staten Island, NY
WHERE: St. George Theater
WHEN: Sunday, August 15, 2010 at 1:00pm
WHAT: A live (Birthday Party concert) performance by The Laurie Berkner Band
(Show runs approx. 1 hour 25min.)
INFO & DIRECTIONS: www.stgeorgetheatre.com
TICKETS: Read below for all information.

2. New York City
WHERE: The Town Hall
WHEN: Sunday, October 3, 2010 at 11:00am
WHAT: A live (Birthday Party concert) performance by The Laurie Berkner Band
(Show runs approx. 1 hour 25min.)
INFO & DIRECTIONS: www.the-townhall-nyc.org
TICKETS: Read below for all information.

TICKET INFORMATION!!!
If you are receiving this email then you are eligible for the PRE-SALE!
READ ALL INFO BELOW!
Tickets: $25, $35
(Plus applicable fees.)
Babies under age one seated in laps are free.

For all the information regarding this pre-sale and general on sale CLICK HERE! Or enter the following into your browser: http://www.laurieberkner.com/site/live.php

***On the day of the pre-sale you’ll be asked for a password. The password is: rocketship

TICKET PRE-SALE DATE: Thursday, June 3, 2010 at 10:00am – Friday, June 4th at 10:00pm
TICKETS ON SALE TO THE GENERAL PUBLIC: Saturday, June 5, 2010 at 10:00am


How to win The Best of The Laurie Berkner Band… Contest ends June 9th.

You get 1 entry for placing a comment with you’re favorite song that Laurie Sings [Visit her site for titles] and please use some method for us to contact you in the comment (twitter or email)

You get 1  extra entry for tweeting about this contest (you can do this daily).  Must contain the following information: @LaurieBerkner CD @dada_rocks – http://bit.ly/ctzPTk  and you must also comment with the link to your twitter message.

Example:  I want the @LaurieBerkner CD from @dada_rocks – http://bit.ly/ctzPTk

You get 1 extra entry for following me on twitter – twitter.com/dada_rocks

You get 1 extra entry for following Laurie Berkner on twitter – twitter.com/LaurieBerkner

You get 1 extra entry for becoming a FAN on facebook – facebook.com/DaDaRocks you must comment that you’re a fan

You get 1 extra entry for becoming a FAN of Laurie’s facebook – facebook.com/LaurieBerknerBand you must comment that you’re a fan

You get 1 extra entry for subscribing to our Feedburner digest mailing – you must also comment that you’ve subscribed

Valentine’s Day: Prep Day 5 – Gift for the Men

I’m a man (yup, still a card carrying member) and I can tell you we’re pretty simple when it comes to gifts.  The simple things like bacon and beer would be enough to make any man happy.  This post takes it one step further, we have some simple gifts, some thoughtful gifts, some heartless electronic gifts they may have wanted and always bring a smile to any guys face.

The saying the way to a guys heart is though is stomach isn’t far off, so taking him out for a nice meal or cooking dinner for him (making it kind of special) is a good way to go.

The simple clothing solution is a nice pair of boxer shorts (silk or cotton) doesn’t matter this one is the thought that counts. Additionally some candy goes nice to round this package out.

The next item up is a guy favorite – BEER – so this is a way to serve it super cold and delicious while saving some money. The BeerTender from Heineken and Krups [Linkis an awesome product (no I don’t have one yet, YES, I really want one but really cant justify that much intake of beer) my friend has one and always rubs it in my face.  Clearly the thought has to be given if your man drinks Heineken, actually he should pretty much ONLY drink Heineken to get the most usage out of this product.

For those retro lovers, find a record shop and get some classic vinyl records [Link].  Make sure he likes the music, this could be a win for you that you get an album or two that you love as well.

After beer we have technology & toys because I’ve yet to meet a guy that doesn’t love something techie (bright shinny objects we’re putty).  Here’s the run down… PlayStation 3 Slim [Link] (newest PS3 on the market) is awesome – also doubles as a Blu-Ray player (HD movies drool!).  You could also give a gift card to Apple in hopes of holding out for that new iPad [Link] incase you were sleeping under a rock for the last month its a large ipod touch.  You could opt for an Apple iPhone or iPod Touch that you could get most any place.

For the thoughtful husband you could arrange a family portrait (or maybe some boudoir [wikipedia] photos of yourself) of course I’ll plug my wife here – Suzanne Cohen Photography [Link], which is also a gift to yourself since the images will last a lifetime.

For those that need the renewals, every couple of years its nice to get a new wallet.  Coach is my brand of choice for men’s wallets [Link], I’ve had mine for years and I’m ready for a refresh.  A money clip, just make sure they usually carry cash or have cash (otherwise its a jab) get it personalized with his initials.

Finally the classic for most men is the go to sexy lingerie (for yourself) and some good loving for him.