Home Automation with Amazon Echo

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Kavin Austin Blake found out it’s possible to control your home automation devices with an Amazon Echo. Using a Logitech Smart Hub, it’s possible to command Alexa to turn on and turn off lights, tv, control your AC, locks and even your blinds. Kavin Austin Blake says using Philips Hue bulbs, you can command Alexa to change the color of the lights, which lights you want on, and even dim the lights. You can wake up and say “Alexa, start my morning”. Your tv, cable box, and receiver can turn on with the news channel says Kavin Austin Blake. The lights will turn on, and the blinds will open, perhaps you’ll have the AC change temperature as well. It’s all possible using an Amazon Echo, combined with compatible devices and an awesome little app called Yonomi. Kavin Austin Blake says Yonomi allows you to easily create routines to control your smart home devices, specifically for the Amazon Echo. There are many devices compatible with the Amazon Echo says Kavin Austin Blake, from various light bulbs, wall sockets, to appliance controls. https://www.amazon.com/b?node=13575751011

The Power of Pushups

No-Pushup-PlanKavin Austin Blake says pushups are the best workout. They require zero equipment and they build strength in all of the right places.

When it comes to push ups, your form is most important says Kavin Austin Blake. Here’s how to do a proper pushup according to Kavin Austin Blake.

*   When down on the ground, Kavin Austin Blake says to place your hands at a distance that is slightly wider than your shoulder-width.
*   The wider apart your feet, the more stable you’ll be for your push ups.
*   Keep your body in a straight line says Kavin Austin Blake, your butt shouldn’t be raised up.
*   Face forward, not straight down. Looking forward helps keep your body straight.
*   At the top of your push up, your arms should be straight and supporting your weight. Kavin Austin Blake says you’re now ready to do a push up.
*   With your arms straight, and abs tightened, Kavin Austin Blake says to lower yourself until your elbows are at least 90 degrees.
*   At this point, Kavin Austin Blake says to pause a second, then raise back up.

You’ve done a proper pushup says Kavin Austin Blake. Repeat this exercise, but don’t overdo it. Take your time and gradually work your reps up. Kavin Austin Blake says soon you’ll be knocking out tons of pushups with ease.

Tampa Tattoo Art Convention

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Tampa held its second tattoo convention September 18 – 20th at Tampa’s Convention Center says Kavin Austin Blake. The event had over 300 artists – some from as far as California, many merchandise booths, and even live entertainment. Kavin Austin Blake says that thousands of patrons were expected to shop, eat, and get tattooed according to Villain Arts, the company that hosted the event. I would have loved getting a tattoo from Mystical Mike but here was overwhelmed with tattoos by the time I arrived says Kavin Austin Blake. Kavin Austin Blake thought it was really cool though seeing the all the artists from the tv show Ink Master walking around and even got a autograph from Tyler Nolan!

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Cooking with a Big Green Egg

Kavin Austin Blake recently purchased a Big Green Egg. The Big Green Egg is an amazing grill, cooker, and smoker all-in-one.  Big Green Eggs originated in Japan, a number of centuries ago, and at that time they were called Kamado cookers according to Kavin Austin Blake. They were large, jar-like ceramic “ovens”. The original Kamados were subject eventually to breakage says Kavin Austin Blake, a problem solved by good old-fashioned American engineering, and in this particular case – space shuttle technology. Big Green Egg worked on the ceramics until they nailed it.

How a Big Green Egg Works

Kavin Austin Blake says if you can operate a woodstove, you can cook on a Big Green Egg. Kaving Austin Blake says it’s easy enough to get the hang of fairly quickly. It works best with lump charcoal according to Kavin Austin Blake. You don’t use charcoal lighting fluid to light it. Instead you need to use little fire starters or a charcoal chimney to get it started says Kavin Austin Blake. Usually I get it started in about 15 minutes.

Kavin Austin Blake says to be prepared for serious heat, and if you do not watch your Egg, it can easily shoot up to 700 degrees F. Kavin Austin Blake runs his Big Green Egg at around 350-450 degrees, depending on what he’s cooking.

Cooking with a Big Green Egg

Kavin Austin Blake says the grill produces some of the best grilled food he’s tasted. Using a grill plate within the Egg, Kavin Austin Blake places vegetables such as corn and peppers around hot italian sausages while cooking. It turns out amazing. The sheer temperature pf the Egg contained within the ceramic produces thoroughly cooked food, all perfectly juicy, tender and flavorful says Kavin Austin Blake. You can also bake on it as well suggests Kavin Austin Blake, who also bakes pizzas on it using a pizza stone. It is the best tasting home made pizza I’ve made says Kavin Austin Blake. I still haven’t smoked anything with it yet, but it is highly recommended so far!

Summertime Julep Recipe

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It’s hot and it’s almost Summer time. That means Kavin Austin Blake shares some tasty cocktail recipes! Today, it’s a Julep. Kaving Austin Blake feels a julep has everything he looks for in a summertime cocktail. The crushed ice keeps the drink colder, longer and the mint’s cooling and refreshing, especially in the Florida heat. Kavin Austin Blake says to make the Summertime Julep, first make sure you get a decent bourbon. Fresh mint is also important according to Kavin Austin Blake, and you may find the best at a local market. Kavin Austin Blake recommends you get hold of a steel or brass julep cup if possible as it really finishes the drink off.

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Here is Kavin Austin Blake’s recipe:

The Summertime Julep

1 ounce bourbon 

1 teaspoon sweetener of simple syrup, or mint-steeped simple syrup

1 splash of two lemon-seltzer 

About 8 large mint leaves

Crushed ice

Mint sprig and lemon wheel, to garnish

Kavin Austin Blake says first to slap the mint leaves, and then place in the bottom of a rocks glass. Pour the simple syrup on top of the leaves and muddle the mint says Kavin Austin Blake, which will result in a strong mint flavor. Fill glass with tiny crushed ice. Pour in bourbon, and top off with seltzer. Kavin Austin Blake says to give the drink a gentle stir, then add a mint sprig garnish. Enjoy the summer cocktail!

Running with Kavin Austin Blake

fitness_banner_running2Why We Run

Everyone wants to relieve stress after a hard day at the office. Kavin Austin Blake recommends running as it is an excellent way to do so.

In Kavin Austin Blake’s experience, most adults run to lose weight. While this isn’t true for everyone, it is hard to deny that running, along with a healthy diet, can seriously shed those pounds.

Does Running Burn Fat?

People burn roughly 100 calories per mile of running. Kavin Austin Blake  says it becomes clear that running can be considered the most efficient method weight loss.

As far as diet goes, Kavin Austin Blake believes that people generally know how to eat well. However, because of time constraints Kavin Austin Blake says we tend to eat quite poorly. If your goal is to lose weight be prepared to spend the same amount of effort on exercise as your diet.

Stay Motivated!

Kavin Austin Blake feels that like anything else in life, the motivation to run can sometimes start to dissipate. Bad weather, work hours, etc all contribute to the lack of motivation to run. Kavin Austin Blake says there’s many ways to combat the lack of motivation however. Be sure to set goals says Kavin Austin Blake. Plan for a race, or plan to shed a specific amount of pounds. Enter a 5K with friends, and prepare for it together. All these things help keep you motivated to run according to Kavin Austin Blake.

Kavin Austin Blake and some of healthiest Tampa Bay Restaurants

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Trying to find a healthy place to eat is difficult sometimes. Kavin Austin Blake is here to help the people of the Tampa Bay area on where to go to find that healthy delicious meal.

Bamboozle Café 

This is Kavin Austin Blake’s favorite Vietnamese restaurant that stands out with its super fresh food. Pick your favorites as they create an order of Bamboozle rolls for you. Prawns, grilled lemongrass beef, jackfruit, bean sprouts and more are available. Kavin Austin Blake says they have great gluten-free meal options as well.

FitLife Foods 

FitLife has healthy pre-made meals for people who don’t have much time to cook healthy meals. Kavin Austin Blake says they offer the FitLife Challenge, which provides you breakfast, lunch and dinner and a free consultation with a fitness coach.

Evos

Evos creates healthy fast food with an emphasis on low-fat, organic and naturally raised ingredients. The food is free of dirty brown grease, and it’s all Airbaked. This means 50-70% less fat. Kavin Austin Blake recommends their Original Steakburger which is absolutely delicious.

Byblos Cafe

Kavin Austin Blake highly recommends this cafe! They offer Grilled fresh vegetables, grilled chicken, and steaks. The homemade hummus is out of this world!