December 29, 2011

Watching Those Triglycerides

Oh those Triglycerides.

Normal levels of them need to be 150 or lower.

Mine are 240, which are on the high side.

But the good news concerning them - they are the easiest to bring back under control.

It all has to do with the amount and type of calories that one consumes.

Triglycerides are what store the unused calories and when they are too high in the blood, it means one has been eating too many starchy and fatty foods.

So, by lowering those types of food, the triglycerides will come down on their own.

Now, I am not a big consumer of fatty foods, but those starches, well, we have way too cozy a relationship.

Pasta, rice, bread, I just love them all.

And I always thought the fiber they provided was of most importance, so eating them had to be all right.

I am going to have to pay close attention to how much of them I eat from now on - it certainly beats having to go on medication for something that is totally controllable.

December 22, 2011

Watching the Weight

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Slim-Fast for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.


It has been a life long thing, this battle with weight loss.

It's not that I am overly overweight, but if I were to loose about thirty pounds, I would be right on the mark according to the weight chart.

I have always kept up a good exercise routine, which is a good thing - I can only imagine how many more pounds I would be overweight if I didn't.

And of course, with the holidays here, a few extra pounds are sure to find their way onto the hips anyway.

Years ago, I tried a diet plan called Slim-Fast.

It was a very simple plan - all they offered were powered shakes, but it worked for what I needed it for.

They are still around after all these years, and they have made some major improvements.

They now have a Slim-Fast 3-2-1 Plan that includes shakes, snacks, and real food.

The plan involves eating three of the Slim-fast delicious snacks, and two of their new improved, already mixed shakes as meals during the day.  

One meal is a balanced 500 calorie one that is made with real food.

It sounds pretty easy to follow, and I am most anxious to try that Chewy Chocolate Crisp bar shown above.

My kind of diet - one that includes chocolate!

Check out the tips and stories about Slim-Fast on Facebook and give them a 'LIKE'.  

You can find the Slim-Fast products in department stores such as Wal-Mart, Target, Safeway, and Kroger, and online at Amazon and the Slim-Fast 3-2-1 Store on Facebook. 

Visit Sponsor's Site

December 18, 2011

Lipid Panel Test

It's been a few years since I had one done, so I went for a lipid panel blood test a couple of weeks ago.

Cholesterol is what this test is all about, and the numbers are now in.

It registered at 212.

It should be under 200, but other factors are also taken into account.

The HDL, which is the good cholesterol, and the LDL, the bad cholesterol.

My good was 49, and since it is supposed to be over 40, mine is a good number.

The LDL is a factored figure, which I will get into on my next post.

The prognosis: my levels are good, keep up with the low fat diet and exercise.

In my next post I will discuss the triglycerides and the part they play in figuring the bad cholesterol.

December 16, 2011

Holiday Frames

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Zenni Optical for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.


I think I have seen just about everything now.

For those who like to really show off their holiday spirit, Zenni Optical makes eyeglasses that have frames designed for the holiday season.

And they are really cute - check out the colorful candy cane and Christmas trees ones shown above.

Now, most people spend so much on their glasses, that the thought of buying a pair to wear just during the Christmas season just isn't possible.

But those folks don't know about purchasing cheap eyeglasses online at Zenni.

They make such affordable glasses, that one can have a pair for every season.

And since it is Christmas time, the money saved by purchasing them online will come in real handy when shopping for all the people on your list.

You may even be able to get a few gifts you couldn't even consider because they were out of the budget range.

And if glasses are the Christmas gift, then head over to the Zenni website and check out what they have to offer.

Tons of stylish frames to choose from, and at their prices, picking up a spare pair would be a wise decision.

Leave me a comment to let me know which ones are your favorites.

Deciding isn't easy, but it is a lot of fun to browse through them all.


Visit Sponsor's Site

December 13, 2011

Applebee's Giftcard Giveaway

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Gift Card Weekend for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.


For all the Applebee's fans out there - be sure to read this post .

You could be the lucky winner of a $25 Applebee's giftcard during this coming week of giveaways on Facebook.

Each day there will be a card given away during the week of 12/10 through 12/18.  

And how does one enter to win one of the card giveaways?

Well, that's the easy part.

All you have to do is like the Gift Card Weekend on Facebook.

And it doesn't stop there.

Each one of your friends can earn extra chances of winning by how much "like" they influence.

If you happen to be one of the lucky winners, the card can be redeemed during the Gift Card Weekend of January 6-8, 2012.

There are many featured offers available from these fine retailers also:

  • JCPenny
  • Regal Cinema
  • Subway
  • Sephora
  • Applebee's
  • Bass Pro Shops
  • Adidas
  • Buca di Beppo
  • Lowes
  • Spa Finder
  • Marriott
  • Giant Eagle


Be sure to come back and check the page each day - there are gift cards to be given away for the whole month to the best places to eat, shop, and pamper yourselves.

It's easy, it's fun, and best of all, it's free to enter to win!


Visit Sponsor's Site

December 8, 2011

Exercise Motivation

I was reading a fellow blogger's post today, and she asked at the end of her post:

What gets you motivated to keep up with an exercising routine?

I thought about that one for a bit, and the thing that keeps me going is that it feels so good after it is done.

There are some times when it just isn't happening, but for the most part, since I sit at a computer for much of my day, I know I have to have an exercise routine.

 It took me a long time to get my muscles built up to do the exercises, and I don't want to loose them.

My routine doesn't have me loosing any weight, but it keeps me moving.

 I try to do it at the same time everyday.

When I am short on time, I still try to get a few minutes in.

A few here and there adds up though the day when there is no chance for the whole routine.

The Yoga exercises that I have recently discovered add a whole new spin on the exercise routine.

I really miss them when I don't do them.

So, yes, my answer is, it feels so good after I do them that I don't want to miss doing them.

And who doesn't want to feel good?

December 2, 2011

Mediterranean Flatbread

We have a new recipe to add to our growing collection.

It is for Mediterranean Flatbread.

We tried this style of bread for the first time last week as there was a loaf on the markdown rack.

What a treat it was - especially when we warmed it up in the oven.

Crisp on the outside, yet so tender on the inside.

And the taste was oh so good.

We just had to find out how to make it ourselves.

We made a batch this afternoon, and we are so pleased with the results.

It was so easy to do, and I can see us using it in the future for pizza too, only we will spread it a bit thinner for the crust.

If you haven't tried this style of bread before, give it a try - warmed in the oven.

I think you will be pleased!

November 29, 2011

Yoga Update

It has been almost two months now, and I am still enjoying the Yoga exercises.

The flexibility has increased quite a bit.

And the ease of movement in doing everyday activities is an added benefit.

Many of the poses were just about impossible to attain, forget about holding them for any length of time in the beginning.

Some of them are still difficult to do, but I can see progress, and someday I hope to be able to do them.

It really does take concentration to keep one's balance at times, but I can feel the strength building in many areas - the ankles, knees, and arms.

I have been using one particular VHS tape that runs for almost 45 minutes.

And I just about have it down pat now so I can do it without the tape.

I will keep looking for another one that uses some different poses, but is beyond the beginner ones that I have now.

Yoga is definitely a positive choice for a healthy lifestyle.

I recommend it!

November 26, 2011

A Deal on Security

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Norton Small Business by Symantec for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

New Message

Running a business online is a rewarding experience.

Keeping up with the technology that gears your online business can sometimes be a headache though.

Learning how everything is put together for a computer system is hard enough, but when you start learning about the software and what it takes to keep it running, then it starts to get overwhelming.

And all of that on top of keeping the business running smoothly.

It's a big job holding it all together.

There is no time to have a virus infect your computer system.

But they do, all the time, especially if the computer doesn't have the correct protection.

Norton Small Business by Symantec is a software program that all business owners should have in their computer.

And as of this posting, you can get 30% off Norton Small Business Products now.

Having your computer down while you try to figure out how to fix it can be devastating to a business.

And not to mention that it could compromise your customer database and all their information.


We have always used the Norton Internet Security product, and will updating to the 2012 version as we do each year.

Check out how Norton can help you and your computer and leave a comment to let me know what works best for you.

Saving money while protecting your computer is a good thing!

Visit Sponsor's Site

November 25, 2011

A Different Black Friday

We received all the sale fliers in the newspaper and checked out the stores we were interested in online.

And we didn't find much of anything that we couldn't live without.

The crazy hours and mobs of people are just not to our liking, so not finding anything was a good thing for us.

My daughter found some excellent deals, and her and her husband docked many hours standing in lines and fighting the crowds.

We did do some Black Friday shopping though.

And I bet you can't guess where we went.

Why, the supermarket, of course.

And we found some really good deals ourselves.

Since the markets were closed yesterday, and for the most part were deserted today, they had many markdowns to move the food that had been sitting for almost two days now.

We got all-natural fresh turkeys for .29 cents a pound.

We had a roast beef for Thanksgiving, so one of those turkeys is going in the oven tomorrow night.

We froze another one, and if the freezer had had more room, it would have had a buddy in there with it.

They were a great deal, and the stores had practically nobody in them.

Who goes to the grocery store the day after Thanksgiving any way - we do!

The only thing I felt really bad about - that poor turkey's life was only worth $4.97.

At least it won't go to waste, and we are most thankful for it.

November 15, 2011

Activia Greek Yogurt

The Activia brand yogurt has always been my favorite.

I have tried several different brands and styles, but I always went back to the Activia.

I really enjoy the Greek style of yogurts too, and was a bit disappointed that my brand didn't make it.

Well, a couple of months ago, Activa started  making the Greek style, but the only place I could find it was the expensive supermarket at $1.50 a cup.

I was so happy to see the market that I love to shop at is now carrying it.

At $1 a cup, I can afford to buy it even if it is a bit more expensive than the regular Activia yogurt.

It is also 6 ounces, where the regular one is only 4 ounces.

I feel the Greek style fills me up more than the regular style does.

It sticks with me longer too - could be those extra 2 ounces.

But since Greek is a thicker yogurt, I tend to think it is the style that keeps me fuller longer.

Either way, it's a good deal for a breakfast, and it is so yummy!

November 10, 2011

Don't Forget the Mat

It gets used every day.

And since I started with the yoga, it has been used twice a day for the past month.

And I have used it for many years.

It still has many years left in it.

But not if I don't take care of it.

That would be my exercise mat.

It gets jumped on, sat upon, and most of all sweatted on.

Then, most of the time, it gets rolled right back up.

It becomes the perfect breeding ground for germs, and over time, it won't smell too good.
So it needs a good cleaning every now and then.
Mine gets stretched out in the bath tub, and soaked in a bleach solution.
Then it gets showered down and hung out on the clothesline.
The foam takes quite a while to dry.
After I finish using it each time, I let it sit on the floor, or drape it over a chair for a bit so it can dry out from the exercise routine.
These steps have kept it fresh and clean for many years.

November 6, 2011

Stand Up for Family

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of American Family Insurance for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

American Family Insurance has a new way of promoting their company.

And since it is a family oriented service, it only makes sense that they use families in their advertising.

And when you add stand up comedy to the mixture, you get a successful and very entertaining way of getting your message out to folks.

We all have instances in our childhood that are bad - they go along with the good ones, and they help to make us the people we are today.

AmFam is featuring several different comedians in their Stand Up For Family videos.

And they are really funny.

I watched the Old School Grandmother video by Mark Vierra, and it was cute.

From the several that I have watched, I found them to be quite entertaining, and something that we can all relate to.

A little something for everyone in the family to get a chuckle out of.

The importance of families can never be mentioned or stressed enough, and I like the way this company has put together their promotions of it.

As the economy becomes tighter, families are starting to come together more.

So, take a seat together and watch some of these videos - it's free and everyone will enjoy the stand up routines in these comedies.

Visit Sponsor's Site

November 5, 2011

The Best Roast Beef

Growing up, a roast beef cooked with potatoes, carrots, and onions in a pan in the oven was the only kind we had.

It was all right - the meat was always very well done and the flavors of the vegetables all tasted like the meat and they were coated with the cooked fat.

It was never my favorite, so I can count on one hand the beef roasts I have cooked in the last thirty years for my family.

I thought that was the only way the should be cooked.

Well, a couple of weeks ago, I tried something very new - for me, that is.

I bought a roast on sale, and I wanted to do it really good and was willing to take a chance.

After rubbing it with an oil and herb mixture, I cooked it in a 475 degree oven for 15 minutes.

The oven was then turned down to 275 degrees..

Then I pulled out my trusty thermometer, and tested that meat after 30 minutes.

And I kept testing it until it reached 130 degrees internal temperature.

Since it still cooks once it is removed from the oven, I let it sit for about 10 minutes.

The internal temp rose to 140 degrees.

We sliced it up, and it was perfectly pink in the middle.

Not overcooked and all dry.

The juices were running, and that meat was so tasty!

I now know the secret - watch it and check the temp a lot.

Also, let the roast warm to room temp for about an hour before cooking it, and do not use any fluids in the cooking pan.

We all look forward to these roasts now, and it won't be long before I have cooked so many I loose count!

October 31, 2011

You Decide the Winner

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Puppies vs. Babies for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.



There is a new contest in the online world.

And it about subjects that are near and dear to our hearts.

We all have an opinion about which is the cutest: Puppies vs. Babies.

And not only do you get to vote, you get to tell the world about your vote.

You can tell why you voted how you did, and all the reasons you have for voting that way.

In this Puppies vs. Babies online contest, the one who gets the most votes will be the winner of $5000.

And my choice?

I am most partial to the babies.

Now, I have owned a dog, which was only eight weeks old when we got him, and he lived with us until he passed away at the age of 13.

He was definitely a part of the family, but when the babies came along, they stole my heart.

Being the mother of two, and now a grandmother, I can honestly say there is nothing better than holding those babies, and rocking them to sleep.

Their wide smiles and bubbling laughs just can't be beat.

Of course, this is just my opinion, and vote.

And until November 23rd, you can cast your vote also, to help decide once and for all who really is the cutest.

Visit Sponsor's Site

October 30, 2011

Don't Forget Grandma

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of TracFone for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

As a parent, it seems most important for the kids to have a cell phone.

We want to be able to connect with them and have them get in touch with us too, and not just for emergencies.

But sometimes we forget about our older relatives.

They are the ones who sometimes get overlooked when it comes to these modern technologies.

Cell phones are very important for them to have also.

And the TracFone provides a great Senior Value for the older generation.

It allows them to also Get into Everywhereness with their low cost plans that offer great nationwide coverage.

They offer pay as you go plans with cards purchased in retail stores or online.

With no contracts, credit checks, or activation charges, there are no surprises with these plans.

International calls cost the same as local ones - this is the only wireless service that offers this feature.

And since grandma probably isn't interested in texting, they have a simple phone just right for her.

But if texting, taking photos or videos, or accessing the web are something she enjoys, then they even have a cell phone for her that starts at $29.99, a price she can afford.

Grandma can Get into Everywhereness and connect with the rest of her family and friends for a pretty reasonable price these days.

Keeping the whole gang connected doesn't get any easier than the Get into Everywhereness plans with TracFone

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October 27, 2011

A Balanced Feel

It has been almost a month that I have been doing the Yoga exercises.

And when I have to miss a day or two, I really miss it.

The movements and poses really do work.

The posture is better when just regularly standing or sitting.

Picking things up off the floor is so much easier - the bending is smooth and the head doesn't pound.

And the overall feeling of well-being can't be beat. 

But the best part is a couple of pounds have been shed, and that is a good thing!

October 21, 2011

Upped the Weights

The four pounder has been retired, and the ten pounder has taken it's place.

The reps are now done with the five, eight, and ten pound weights.

Though they are hard, they are not as bad as I thought they would be.

I did feel them the next morning.

I am glad to be back up to them, it has been a couple of years.

I will keep up with them this time, and hopefully can advance to next ones in due time!

October 16, 2011

A New Banana Bread

One of my family's favorites is banana bread.
But after all these years of making it to use up the last couple of bananas that nobody wants to eat, they are getting pretty tired of the same old thing.
So I tried a new recipe for those old bananas.
I now make Banana Crumb Muffins, and they just love them.
The recipe is almost the same, but they have a cinnamon crumb topping on them that really makes them have a great taste.
It makes a dozen, and it is easy to pop a couple in the freezer to pull out later.
Glad we found this new twist on an old favorite - sometimes change is good!

October 9, 2011

Apples and More Apples

The apples have arrived.

And my daughter got a very good deal on a bushel of them.

So, we made Apple Jelly - something I haven't done in years since the kids were small.

I forgot how gorgeous the color of this treat is - a pale pink.

And the taste - just like eating a fresh apple, only sweeter.

Apple Crisp is in the oven now and the house is smelling delightful.

It was good spending time with my daughter.

And passing on the knowledge and skills that she will use too.

She did good finding that apple deal!

October 6, 2011

Yoga Update

I am really liking the Yoga exercises.

I have done it for six days now and can feel a definite difference in many areas.

Of the six tapes that came in the set, there are a couple that I will be using regularly.

The beginner one was fine for the first couple of days, but once I learned the poses, I was ready for a few more that one of the other tapes provides.

I find the exercises smooth and very stress-free.

I don't think I will ever be as flexible as the instructor, and the extra weight doesn't help either.

It's hard to bend deeply into many of the poses, but I am hoping that improves with time.

I have a couple of blocks and a belt that came with the mat I bought many years ago for my morning exercise routine.

It is good to be able to use them.

With my weight and my age, I don't see me doing the inverted poses or the back bends, but many of the seated, standing, and kneeling ones are very doable.

I will post more updates as I continue to learn and hopefully improve with this new exercise.

October 1, 2011

First Day for Yoga

We will not be swimming for a while since it is going to be cold and rainy for the next 4 - 5 days.

So I figured it would be a good time to check out the yoga videos I purchased over the summer.

It is a set of six videos made by Living Arts.

They are for beginners and a couple of them focus on strength and flexibility as one gets better at it.

I must say, after doing it, it wasn't as hard as I thought it was going to be.

I am not near as flexible as the instructor, but the poses and holds were not hard as she kept saying they were for beginners.

I think it is because many of the exercises I do in the morning really have been working even though the waist line doesn't show it.

My innards must be more in shape than I realized.

There isn't a lot of moving around with this yoga as there is in the exercises, but I sweat just as much as when I am doing them.

It's a kind of exercise that creeps up on you and you get to take a nice relaxing cool down at the end.

I think once I get the routine down, I am going to like it.

September 30, 2011

Wetsuit in the Lake

We have had quite a bit of rain these last few days, and more is predicted over the weekend.

It makes the lake water even colder than it is getting.

So today we decided to use our wetsuits for our swim.

We didn't bring our flippers or snorkels, just the suits.

Man, were we bouyant.

It was a job to keep the legs down and kicking.

And the arms wanted to stay up too.

But after we got the hang of it, we were able to cover some ground.

They are such a great invention, these suits.

They will certainly extend our swimming season for some time.


September 24, 2011

Stay Out of the Wake

Once again we spent some time this afternoon swimming at the lake.

The water is really getting chilly - getting in is getting hard.

But we do.

And going in with some one else is always better than doing it alone.

I have learned these last few times to get in a bit of a distance away though.

You see, the top layer of the water is warm, and the bottom layer is bitter cold.

And if you are careful to stay in that top layer, which is about a foot deep, then all is well.
But when that bottom layer gets disturbed to mix in with the warmer water - the going gets rough.

So, swimming in our own areas is the way to go, nice and slow and even.

I was following my husband, and his kicking stirred up that water so much, I almost had to get out from the coldness.

 The swims are shorter than they were in the summer, but we are determined to enjoy it as long as we can.


September 22, 2011

Low Calorie Meal

Tonight we had a special treat.

The market was having a sale for a couple of days only.

Fresh lobster was $3.99 a pound.

We have been watching the prices of them this past season, and $4.99 was about the best deal we could find.

It was still too much for us.

Other than that, they ran $7.99 - $9.99 most of the time.

So needless to say, lobster is rare in our house - last time we had a meal of them was a couple of summers ago.

So we splurged for dinner tonight, and man was it delicious!
We cooked them ourselves instead of having the store do it - the wait was over an hour they were so backed up with orders.

I guess we were not the only ones enjoying them for dinner.

They are a low calorie food - 111 calories for 4 ounces of meat with only .7 grams of fat - that's 1% of a day's worth of fat.

Too bad they are so expensive - they are an all -natural, health food - especially when eaten as I like them - right out of the shell with no butter or sauces.


September 15, 2011

Repackage to Watch Intake

That trail mix is good for you and so are those whole grain crackers.

But they are only good for you when one eats the serving size suggested on the packaging.

It is way too easy to over-eat more than one serving.

So, I just read a quick tip that helps to make overeating while snacking a thing of the past.

Using little zip-lock bags, repackage the bag into the serving sizes listed on the packaging.

Eating out of the large bag, odds are, you will always eat more.

Eating the repackaged bag will help cut down on that problem.


September 9, 2011

Adding Yoga

We probably have about a month before we have to give up our swimming as our New England lake will just be too cold.

I still do my morning exercise routine, but giving up the swimming will be quite a bummer.

We love this weightless form of exercise as we glide through the water.

So I have been giving some thought to doing some Yoga when the swimming has ended.

I picked up a couple of beginner VHS tapes at the second hand store, and I will watch them before I give it a try.

I did some many years ago in high school - but the body and bones were quite a bit more limber back then.

My exercises certainly made the swimming easier this season, and I am thinking the slow, smooth movements of the Yoga will be a good thing for the winter.

I will post more as I read and learn more about it.

Hoping it is a good choice!


September 6, 2011

Still Swimming

The days are cooler, and the water is a bit chillier too.

Especially after all the rain we have had the last week, and no hot sunny days to warm it up.

But we are still doing our swimming each afternoon.

A bit earlier than we did in the summer.

Today was overcast and drizzly off and on through out the day, but that didn't stop us.

The water was pure glass - not a ripple on it.

I felt almost guilty disturbing it's peacefullness.

As we were gliding through the water, Mother Nature gave us a treat.

A Great Blue Heron came skimming across the top of the water and landed in a pine tree right beside us.

I was surprised at how sure-footed that big, long bird was in that tree.

He was still in there watching us when we left.

Maybe he wanted our spot on the beach for wading and looking for dinner.

I hope he was successfull!


September 1, 2011

Potato Leftovers

Potatoes - I am not a big fan of them.

Rice and pasta are more my style of a sidedish, but the boys really like those potatoes, so they must be cooked sometimes.

A couple of days ago, I boiled a pan of them - too many of them I later found out.

Not wanting them to go to waste, I decided to make some homefries with them.

After cutting them up, I added an onion, some garlic, canola oil, and ground black pepper to the pan.

Cooking them over a fairly high heat, I let them brown on the bottom and get crispy.

Turning a few times to brown them all, they cooked up really nicely.

This is about the only way I like potatoes, and man were they good.

We will even have leftovers of them.

Quite a few meals out of that one pan - some good came from those potatoes after all!


August 27, 2011

Encourage a Dream

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of UPromise for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

UPromise_Brand_300x250_static.jpg (3 documents)

Saving money for a child's education after high school is a hard thing to these days.

But it is more important than ever for children to receive further education as it can hopefully give them an edge in the job market.

Every little bit that can be put aside is a good thing though.

And when a contest comes around that helps promote your child's dreams, then that is something to look into.

The website, is holding such a contest.

UPromise is celebrating it's 10th Anniversary, and they are giving us the gifts.

There will be eleven winners in all, ten will receive a prize of $1000, and one lucky winner will receive a grand prize of $10,000.

And it is really easy to enter this contest.

After reading the dream wall official rules, you can submit your dream for your children on their Dream Wall.

Share how you have inspired your child's dream and you could be one of those winners.

You can also vote on your favorite stories by "liking" them on the wall.

My dream is one of hope for our children.

Keeping the hope alive is an important thing during these trying times, and encouraging our child's dreams is a big part of parenting.

But that will always be, no matter their age.

Visit Sponsor's Site

August 23, 2011

Sweet Cantaloupe

They are on sale this week at the market.

Those delicious sweet cantaloupe melons.

Two of them went into the cart, and we are enjoying the second one with our dinner.

The orange flesh is loaded with vitamin C and they also provide a healthy dose of antioxidants.

One word of caution though, they need to be thoroughly washed before any slices are made into the skin.

Their irregular, bumpy skin hides and carries bacteria, especially the salmonella kind.

Washing and drying it helps to reduce contamination, and consuming the fruit within a couple days of cutting it is best.

A healthy sweet treat to be sure, and a good deal this week too!


August 14, 2011

Second Bean Harvest

The first harvest of our green beans in the garden was about two weeks ago.

And we got a lot of beans.

We just finished the second harvest, and we got more than the first one!

And there are still plenty of "little" beans and blooms left for another harvest.

This has been the best year we have had for these beans.

I think towards the end of the season, we are going to let some of them go to seed.

This was certainly a good batch of seeds, and we wouldn't mind another year like this one.

I love growing our own food - wish we had the space and means to do more.


August 12, 2011

Bad Joints and Exercise

Osteo-arthritis hurts.

And moving around seems to only make it hurt more.

So we don't.

And according to a new study, as reported on the news tonight, moving is the best thing for it.

Most individuals with this condition don't get ten minutes of exercise a week because it hurts too much to do it.

From what they have found, persisting through the pain will pay off in the long run.

The joints will move more readily with less pain as the muscles strengthen to help them.

This is even more motivation to keep up with a good exercise plan.

Use it or loose it.

It sounds so hard and painful to get it back - it is a shame to loose it at all!


August 9, 2011

A Substitute in the Granola

The snacks are at an all time low in the house.

Not wanting to buy fatty or salty foods, we have been bypassing the snack isle in the market for a good part of the summer.

Fresh fruits are great when we can get them on sale, but they are gone quickly.

So I thought I would make up a batch of granola.

Crunchy, sweet, and full of good stuff for the inards.

Measuring the ingredients, I found myself to be short about half the amount of oats I needed.

With the honey/oil mixture all measured out, I really needed those dry ingredients to keep the recipe balanced.

So, into the bowl went some rice krispies cereal.

I wasn't sure how they were going to hold up in the oven or how good they would be to the tastebuds.

Well, I must say, they worked.

They add a different "crunch" from what we are used to, but mixed in with the oats and seeds and of course, the mini chocolate chips, they are quite tasty.

It worked in a pinch, and actually it cuts the cost of making this snack since they are cheaper to buy than the oats.

One snack in the larder - hopefully it satisfies the snacking urge for a few days!


August 4, 2011

Corn Has Arrived

We just had our first local farm corn of the season.

And it was so delicious!

For the past few weeks we have been finding some in the supermarket, and it has been running about $5 a dozen.

It's good, but nothing like the local ones.

At $7 a dozen, it is worth the couple extra dollars.

The crispness and sweetness of these ears cannot be matched.

Fresh from the field to the plate in just a couple of hours.

The sweet taste of summer!


July 30, 2011

Zucchini Galore

Anyone who has grown them knows that zucchini can get out of hand in a big way.

And when they begin to mature in the garden, you don't have just one.

I think this season, I have seen the biggest one ever come through the front door.

It and it's twin were "hiding" under the leaves and didn't get noticed.

These veggies were easily over two feet long - and they were so fat.

What was I possibly going to do with those?

With one of them, I made two chocolate zucchini cakes, and froze enough shredded for another three cakes.

The other monster went into a dish that I put together with green peppers, onions, cooked ground beef/pork, and spaghetti sauce.

We have had three meals of it, and there are three more in the freezer.

What looked overwhelming turned into many delicious meals and desserts with one afternoon of work.

That's just what I like - saving time and money and stretching them both a long way!