Monday, April 30, 2012

Paper, ebook and audio stats...what are yours?

We're all aware that ebook sales have been climbing like monkeys on caffeine, but I hadn't paid much attention to audio book sales until recently. Apparently, ebook publishers, such as Carina Press, are big on putting out audio versions of their books. I suppose it makes sense that, in an era where music is an ipod and earplug away, hands-free books would be popular as well.

Sure enough, according to data collected by The Association of American Publishers for sales between January 2011 and January 2012, audio book sales have climbed along with ebooks. For adult book sales, while mass market paperback dropped 22.5%, ebook sales rose 49.4% and downloaded audio sales rose 29.4%. More stats on adult book sales are available at the link above. Overall, all trade book sales went up, but what really jumped out at me was the enormous increase in children/YA ebook sales. It went up a whopping 475.1%!!! That's kids and electronic gadgets for you. But hey, if it encourages reading...

So this is where I admit that my percentage of ebook reading is less than 1% and audio is at nill. I'm still largely a paper girl. My kids are still paper readers (just because they don't have ereaders), but they have enjoyed listening to the Harry Potter books on tape while in the car with their dad. They've read the paper versions, but audio was the only way they could get their dad in on the series.

What about you? What are your ebook vs audio vs paper book reading stats?

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Tahini Tuna Salad

I'm pretty careful about how often I feed my family tuna (or other high mercury fish), but I have to admit that ever since I came up with this recipe, I've eaten more tuna than recommended. Okay, it has only been a month. I'm sure my craving for the perfect mix of creamy and tangy flavors in this recipe will subside. Or not :)

I do buy light tuna, since it's lower in mercury. I also buy a brand that is packed only in water and salt. Believe it or not, most cans that say 'water' are actually packed in chicken broth and other ingredients. Since I have to stay away from gluten, onions, garlic and other foods, I stick with simple. I also recommend that you stir the tahini (sesame seed paste) until smooth before using. Some brands chunk up at the bottom, leaving nothing but oil on top. Apart from that, I hope you enjoy this high protein, gluten/dairy free and 'healthy fat' version of tuna salad.

Rula's Tahini Tuna Salad


3 cans light tuna in water
1/2 can of chick peas (drained)
2 roma tomatoes diced small
2 large celery stalks diced small
1/4 red bell pepper diced small
2 TBS white vinegar
2 TBS spicy brown mustard
1 1/2 tsp salt (adjust to taste)
1/2 cup tahini
1/8 cup extra virgin olive oil

Just mix it all up in a bowl and serve it straight up (my favorite way), on a bed of lettuce, as a sandwich with gluten free bread (try Rudi's multigrain GF bread toasted) or with a side of quinoa. It's a quick and easy meal that stores well in the fridge. Hope you enjoy!

Monday, April 2, 2012

Hack Protection

I did survive April Fool's Day...sort of. My boys had friends over (all under 15) and they played outside most of the day. The house was pretty quiet until they sent the youngest in screaming that the others had hopped on my husband's John Deere and taken off to 7-Eleven. Soooo NOT okay! In a panic, I didn't stop to note that we never leave the key in the tractor. Nope, I just ran out, cell phone in hand ready to dial for help...and I ran right into the entire group of kids standing in the driveway cracking up. Very funny.

Not so funny is having your computer hacked and it's happening more and more these days. The Ruby Slippered Sisterhood, home of the Golden Heart finalists and a group of incredibly talented, intelligent and wise writers, has a must-read, two part post on hacker protection. It's called '10 Ways To Reduce Hack Risk' and part one was posted on Friday. Part two is up today. Very eye opening!

It's spring break in our area, so I have to go make sure the boys aren't planning more practical jokes. Maybe I should come up with a few of my own ... ;)