The Chocolate Life

Discover Chocolate and Live La Vida Cocoa!

Denise Ryan
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  • Raleigh, NC
  • United States
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The Demise of the Whitman's Sampler

I'm working on a new seminar - so tough to come up with new ideas!  And I'm doing a little research on the Whitman's Sampler.  I came across this post that was just terrific!  Had to share it with you all.

Yes - Valentine's Day is coming!!


Fantastic post about the Whitman's Sampler


I am wondering why the Whitman's Sampler fell so far - it was the go to candy when I was a kid.  I bet it will be completely gone in 10 years.

Maybe because they haven't changed a damn thing in like 50 years?????

Maybe because Russell Stovers is LAME?  They bought the brand back in 1993 and have done absolutely nothing with it.

What do you all think?


Push Harder or Be Grateful?

I've been eating WAY too much chocolate lately, but I have taken some time out to actually write a blog post!

It's on my FireStar website since it's not really about chocolate.  But for those of you who might be thinking about your life (doing the whole New Year's thing), I think you'll find it interesting:

http://www.firestarspeaking.com/2013/01/04/be-grateful-or-push-harder/

Happy, Happy 2013!

On Adventure - Big and Small


I'm a big fan of adventures - of not letting your life get boring.  

This past weekend I had persimmon pudding for the first time.  Pretty good.  I went to the NC Persimmon Festival just to try it. 

I also visited two Walmart stores to find the new Gingerbread Oreos.  They are pretty darn good.  The cookie part is the golden (vanilla) Oreo, it's the filling that is gingerbread.  Yum!

Basically if I see something I haven't tried, I try it (well, if chocolate, sugar, peanut butter, cake or frosting are involved).  Why not?  What a great way to have a mini-adventure!  And you may not be a fan of sweets, so you can name your thing.  But it sure helps if it's inexpensive!

My next big adventure is not inexpensive, but it will be fun and will push me out of my comfort zone.  I've always wanted to go to Italy.  To stand in the Sistine Chapel and see all the glories of the Renaissance.  And who doesn't want to see the canals of Venice and the coliseum in Rome?  I've been putting the trip off, waiting until after the recession or until the European economy settled down.  I was also waiting until I met Mr. Right.  Well, I've met Mr. Right, and he just started a new job and can't go!  If you wait to live your life, you'll never live it.  

I'm headed to Venice on November 15th.  Recession still here, Europe far from settled down, and going solo.  I'm going with a tour group, so I'll make new friends.  The recession might hang around for a long time to come, and who knows when Europe will get it together.  Meanwhile the great wonders of history are eroding.  There is no better time to go than now.

Is there something you've always wanted to do?  What are YOU waiting for?  There will never be a perfect time or a perfect situation.  The only time you are guaranteed is now. You'll never be any younger.  Your life is now - live it!

Hershey - It Really IS the Sweetest Place on Earth!

I was lucky enough to do work for a client in Lancaster, PA last week, and I got to head back to one of my favorite places - Hershey, PA! You know you are in the right place when you see this from your windshield:




And things just get better! Forgive the blurriness - I was driving. Yes, photographing and driving. Not good.
 


The streetlights really are shaped like Hershey's Kisses - they alternate between wrapped and unwrapped.  and you gotta love the American flags.  You can't see it here - but there was baskets of flowers everywhere and loads of green grass and quaint houses.  Hershey is so pretty.





As soon as I got there, I headed straight for Chocolate World.  I feel these guys were there just to welcome me.  "Yay!" they say!  "Yay!" I say!


As soon as I got there, they were doing a chocolate tasting, so I popped in.  The last time I was there was back in 2007 and things have changed a lot.  Back then you got TONS of chocolate, it was great!  Now they have a fancy room (back then you were just in a restaurant area, it seemed almost illicit.  People walked by, looking at you like you were getting something special.  Which you were.) and you get very little chocolate. Especially considering it costs $10.

The girl went through it like she had done it 1,000,000 times before which I'm sure she had.  But it's chocolate!  You are in Hershey!  Get some emotion going!!  You know how I feel about non excited chocolate people.  What the heck is wrong with them?  What could be more fun?

And don't say, "If you did it for a living, you'd feel that way too."  I do!  And every time I get to give "Motivation by Chocolate" I love it!  Maybe she was just having an off day.  (I wanted to cast her from the stage and take over.  I would have had a blast with that tasting!)

Afterward, I wandered into their bakery - how I love bakeries! I love anything with copious amount of frosting involved:



Who wouldn't love getting one of these for their birthday?


Chocolate chip cheesecake:


Wow - these looked really good - Reese's PB & J!:


Hershey's Bliss Raspberry:






Smores - yum!!!


Pina Colada - eh.  But Reese's White PB Cup? - YES!!!






Almond Joy:

Take 5:

Heath Cheesecake - woohoo!!




Now here was a little enthusiasm!  I was raving and taking pictures and basically dancing with glee at the sight of all this fat and sugar.  And one of the cute bakery ladies pulled this out of the back to show to me.  How lucky is Elizabeth?



And how lucky are we?  Milton Hershey's birthday is on the 13th - and I, for one, am so glad he had the vision to build the Town of Hershey.  So think of him on Thursday and raise a bar (or a chip or a cookie) to the man who built the Sweetest Place on Earth.  Happy birthday, Milton Hershey!  And thank you.

On the Cover of the Rolling Stone.......Not Quite

I thought since my loyal readers went through my hip replacement with me, WAY back when I was a regular blogger, you all might get a kick out of seeing the cover of this month's Arthritis Today magazine:
Yep, that's me!

Can you believe it? They came across my blog posts and thought my story would be an interesting one for their readers. Working with them was a blast and I have to say, it's kind of cool to be on the cover. I've already had two old boyfriends e-mail me. (Not really the way you want to dazzle them, but what the heck!)

Just goes to show you, every cloud has a silver lining. You might not know it at the time - I was so bummed and sad when I first was told I had to get a hip replacement, and now I'm pain free and on the cover of a magazine! If you're going theough something tough right now, keep your chin up. You can't even imagine what the future holds for you. I can promise, it will be better.

Have a great 4th and eat more chocolate!!
 

Denise Ryan's Page

Latest Activity

Denise Ryan and Zeke Mandel are now friends
Mar 4, 2009
Denise Ryan replied to Zeke Mandel's discussion Help answer our survey
"Hi! I found the survery very interesting and would love to share a few thoughts with you if you are interested. I have a market research backgound. Good luck with the project! Denise"
Mar 4, 2009

Profile Information

Dark, Milk, White?
Dark, Milk, White
Most memorable chocolate experience:
trip to the Chocolate Spa at Hershey - also my first chocolate tasting
My favorite chocolate is:
one? I can't just pick one!

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