Beauty is All Around

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Sometimes we take for granted the beauty that is all around us. Just this evening I went for a walk in my neighborhood and I was enchanted by the caring gardeners that add vistas of splendor.

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These are certainly nurturing individuals who I am grateful for adding beauty to my walks. Often times, we take long trips by car and plane to escape our immediate surroundings when exploring close to home we might be surprised by what we discover: parks, gardens and folks from home.

Are You A Locavore?

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How local do you buy? It seems that supporting local growers, even city gardens, helps people introduce the fresh produce and greens at affordable prices into their diets that otherwise would be lacking.

Fresh from the garden is pictured above; Italian locavore that I am! The ten best states to eat local, are, interestingly, the top 10 to offer top ten health care:

http://t.co/wspbhKdmkK

Mozzarela Sticks

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2 whole 16 Oz mozzarella
Cut 1/2 inch thick length of cheese
Coat in:
A-flour
B-egg
C-italian style bread crumbs

Deep fry for 30  seconds in cannola oil
Towel dry the oil
Serve with your favorite marinara sauce

Note for easier frying, freeze on sheets for two hours or until ready to use. Deep fry frozen until golden brown.

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2015 Q1 BlackBerry Fiscal Report

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Press Release

BlackBerry Reports 2015 Fiscal First Quarter GAAP Profitability

WATERLOO, ONTARIO–(Marketwired – June 19, 2014) – BlackBerry Limited (NASDAQ:BBRY)(TSX:BB), a global leader in mobile communications, today reported financial results for the three months ended May 31, 2014 (all figures in U.S. dollars and U.S. GAAP, except where otherwise indicated).

Q1 Highlights: Cash and investments balance of $3.1 billion at the end of the fiscal first quarter, up from $2.7 billion in the prior quarter Adjusted Q1 gross margin of 48%, up from 43% in the prior quarter Reduced adjusted operating expenses by 57% year over year and 13% quarter over quarter Successfully launched the new Z3 device in Indonesia; 8 additional countries to follow EZ Pass Program resulted in a total of 1.2 million licenses issued for BES10, including more than 10% of total licenses traded in from competitors’ Mobile Device Management platforms Launched Project Ion focused on the “Internet of Things” market

Q1 Results Revenue for the first quarter of fiscal 2015 was $966 million, down $10 million or 1% from $976 million in the previous quarter. The revenue breakdown for the quarter was approximately 39% for hardware, 54% for services and 7% for software and other revenue. During the first quarter, the Company recognized hardware revenue on approximately 1.6 million BlackBerry smartphones compared to approximately 1.3 million BlackBerry smartphones in the previous quarter. During the first quarter, approximately 2.6 million BlackBerry smartphones were sold through to end customers, which included shipments made and recognized prior to the first quarter and which reduced the Company’s inventory in channel.

GAAP net income for the first quarter was $23 million, or $0.04 earnings per share (“EPS”). The net income includes non-cash income associated with the change in the fair value of the Debentures of $287 million (the “Q1 Fiscal 2015 Debentures Fair Value Adjustment”) and pre-tax restructuring charges of $226 million related to the Cost Optimization and Resource Efficiency (“CORE”) program. Excluding these items, adjusted loss for the first quarter was $60 million, or $0.11 per share. These impacts on GAAP net income and EPS are summarized in the table below.

The total of cash, cash equivalents, short-term and long-term investments was $3.1 billion as of May 31, 2014, compared to $2.7 billion at the end of the previous quarter – a net increase of $429 million. Excluding receipt of a tax refund of $397 million and proceeds on the sale of real estate of $287 million, the Company used $255 million in the first quarter. This represents a decrease from $784 million used last quarter, after excluding proceeds of $250 million related to convertible debt issuance. Purchase obligations and other commitments amounted to approximately $1.8 billion as at May 31, 2014, with purchase orders with contract manufacturers representing approximately $317 million of the total.

“Our performance in fiscal Q1 demonstrates that we are firmly on track to achieve important milestones, including our financial objectives and delivering a strong product portfolio,” said John Chen, Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of BlackBerry. “Over the past six months, we have focused on improving efficiency in all aspects of our operations to drive cost reductions and margin improvement. Looking forward, we are focusing on our growth plan to enable our return to profitability.”

Outlook

The Company anticipates maintaining its strong cash position, while increasingly looking for opportunities to prudently invest in growth. The Company is targeting break-even cash flow results by the end of fiscal 2015.

Reconciliation of GAAP gross margin, gross margin percentage, loss before income taxes, and net income to adjusted gross margin, adjusted gross margin percentage, adjusted loss before income taxes, adjusted net loss and adjusted loss per share: (United States dollars, in millions except per share data)

BlackBerry Reports 2015 Fiscal First Quarter GAAP Profitability

Note: Adjusted gross margin, adjusted gross margin percentage, adjusted loss before income taxes, adjusted net loss and adjusted loss per share do not have a standardized meaning prescribed by GAAP and thus are not comparable to similarly titled measures presented by other issuers. The Company believes that the presentation of these non-GAAP measures enables the Company and its shareholders to better assess the Company’s operating results relative to its operating results in prior periods and improves the comparability of the information presented. Investors should consider these non-GAAP measures in the context of the Company’s GAAP results.

(1) During the first quarter of fiscal 2015, the Company reported GAAP gross margin of $451 million or 47% of revenue. Excluding the impact of the CORE charges included in cost of sales, the adjusted gross margin was $463 million, or 48%.

(2) During the first quarter of fiscal 2015, the Company incurred charges related to the CORE program of $226 million pre-tax, or $204 million after tax, of which $12 million were included in cost of sales, $41 million were included in research and development and $173 million were included in selling, marketing, and administration expenses.

(3) During the first quarter of fiscal 2015, the Company recorded the Q1 Fiscal 2015 Debentures Fair Value Adjustment of $287 million. This adjustment was presented on a separate line in the Consolidated Statement of Operations.

Supplementary Geographic Revenue Breakdown

Conference Call and Webcast A conference call and live webcast will be held beginning at 8 am ET, which can be accessed by dialing 1-877-974-0445 or through your BlackBerry® 10 smartphone, personal computer or BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet here. A replay of the conference call will also be available at approximately 10 am by dialing (+1)416-640-1917 and entering pass code 4680440# or by clicking the link above on your BlackBerry® 10 smartphone, personal computer or BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet. This replay will be available until midnight ET July 4, 2014.

BlackBerry In Partnership with Amazon

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Rumour has it that today is the day that Amazon unveils its new entry into the cell phone or rather “sell” phone market. What this means for market share by various OEMs remains to be seen. With both BlackBerry and Microsoft at near 3% of the USA market share, a new agreement with direct access to the Amazon App Store between BlackBerry and Amazon might be what is needed for BlackBerry to break away from Microsoft. Here is the press release:

Press Release

Waterloo, ON – BlackBerry Limited (NASDAQ: BBRY; TSX: BB), a world leader in mobile communications, today announced that the Amazon Appstore will be available with the launch of the BlackBerry 10.3 operating system this fall, greatly expanding access to thousands of the most popular apps and games to BlackBerry customers.

With more than 240,000 Android applications in the Amazon Appstore worldwide, BlackBerry 10 device customers will gain access to popular apps such as Groupon, Netflix, Pinterest, Candy Crush Saga and Minecraft.

The strategic move also enables BlackBerry to align its developer program with its renewed focus on delivering the most secure, end-to-end mobile enterprise solutions, by placing more emphasis on the development of vital enterprise and productivity applications.

“Making the Amazon Appstore available on BlackBerry 10 devices will help BlackBerry continue to meet two essential needs: greater app availability for our smartphone users and enhanced productivity solutions for enterprises,” said BlackBerry Executive Chairman and CEO John Chen. “We’ve listened to our customers and have taken this important step to deliver on their needs, while executing on our strategy.”

BlackBerry and Amazon will be working with the BlackBerry application developer community to help them migrate their apps to the Amazon Appstore in preparation for the 10.3 launch, where they will benefit from the store’s powerful promotional tools that enable maximum discoverability and profitability. This will include Appstore Developer Select, which provides enhanced merchandising, as well as Amazon Coins incentives, the Developer Promotions Console, which enables real-time pricing adjustments and specials, and the popular Free App of the Day program.

BlackBerry will unveil a new enterprise application partner program for corporate developers, ISVs and systems integrators, designed to expand the number of enterprise applications that leverage BlackBerry 10 to deliver business-class functionality and enhance users’ productivity, communication and collaboration.

Fettuccine Topped With A Calamari Tomato Sauce

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Serves 4 to 6 easily

Ingredienti

1 lb of calamari
1 large sweet onion
several cloves of garlic
1 can (32oz) of crushed tomatoes
4 scalions
extra virgin olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
cumen to taste
bay leaves

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Procedure

Finely chop the garlic
Dice the onion, sscalions
Add About 1/4 inch coating of olive oil to a medium sized sauce pan
Stir fry the garlic, onion, and scalions until golden
Add the calamari and stir fry covered for no more than 8 minutes
Add the crushed tomatoes, salt, pepper, other spices, bay leaves and bring to a boil before reducing heat to simmer for 20 minutes

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Bring a large soup pot of water to a boil, add 2lbs fettucine or linguini,  add salt to elevate the temperature, bring back to a boil and cook according to package instructions for al dente or your preferred texture
Strain pasta and toss in the sauce in the large pot
Plate and top with freshly grated parmigiano romano and enjoy!

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NYC Subway

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The NYC Subway is a microcosm of life in NY. One finds entertainment, distractions amusement in the variety of people and the diaspora they represent. One can be a famous player. Several years ago I sat across from Sting on the A train. One can be from Harlem or from the Bronx to Brooklyn, and ride on the number 2 line. The different lines travel different hoods with their own line culture, but all of NY intermingled on the subway with tourists from all over the world. 

One, indeed, can be immersed in a distinct cultural oasis where French, German, Italian, Chinese, and almost any other language can be heard.

You cannot get a real feel of NYC, without embarking on the NYC Subway.

The #NYC #subway is a #microcosm of #life. #Peddlers #players and #pumps!

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