• Foods

    My Favorite Foods

    Foods photoFavorite Foods

    Mangos; green outside, tangerine inside, firm and succulent

    Watermelon; firm jade rind, sliced fleshy, ruby red , excellent

    I love this round fruit; red or black juicy with pits, cherries

    Another fruit I adore is plump, red, and luscious, strawberries

    Shrimp; boiled, baked, or barbequed, you can’t go wrong

    Almond-chocolate ice cream won’t last at my house long

    This is just a sampling of my favorite foods

    Everything here depends upon my moods

  • Foods

    Donating to Your Local Food Pantry

    Food  photoI once heard a man talking in front of a large audience about his impoverished life growing up as a child. I’ll never forget what he said about it in regards to people ‘giving’ to their family. When they moved into a housing development and did not have any furniture, he said that people felt they were doing something beautiful by giving them their old, stained, ripped couch. Surely beggars can’t be choosers right? As a little boy, he didn’t understand the concept of receiving charity like that. He just couldn’t comprehend it. It made an impact on his life and his testimonial made me think about it because how often do we feel that if people have nothing then surely they should be grateful for anything they get right?

    In giving food to a local food pantry, consider if you would actually eat what you are buying. Why is it that people seem to think the very best thing to give are canned beans? Believe me, I know this because I have volunteered at food pantries and there comes a point where you have to put a sign on the door that says “no more beans please”. It’s like some sort of unwritten code that says the poor love canned beans or that is all they really need or maybe some feel it’s all they deserve.

    My church has a food pantry and we send out emails asking for food donations and we are very specific in that we want people who donate to please donate from their surplus. This means, if you buy Jif Peanut Butter, please donate the same brand to the pantry. Don’t buy yourself Jif and then the generic for the pantry. However, if you barely make ends meet and your pulling from your budget to stretch to buy food for a pantry then okay, get the generic but morally, I feel if we want to give to bless someone else in an unfortunate situation then it should be the same as what we would hope for if we were hungry and our children were hungry and could not buy our own food. We encourage people to give fun foods because everyone loves snacks. Our pantry is probably also the only one in the area that offers frozen meat and vegetables instead of strictly canned goods. Our members will often purchase from Angel Food Ministries and donate a unit.

    Often times, you may never see it but your neighbor who seems to be doing just fine may be feeding their children popcorn for dinner and eventually, secretly need a food pantry for a short time. (I have seen this as well.) Many people encounter hard times and need a little help.

    There are huge food pantries that are very organized and feed approved, impoverished families every month. Next, there are small, local food pantries typically run by churches that will help families who are in a rough spot and need temporary help. Smaller pantries can not usually afford to feed multiple families year round but will offer assistance for a few months. Many times there are people temporarily down on their luck and will not qualify for Government assistance and perhaps maybe not even a larger food pantry organization and really need help. As I stated previously about the family feeding their children popcorn for dinner is the very reason our church began our pantry. The family doing this had a nice house, nice income and yet it was the Holidays and he lost his job. Nobody knew they were suffering so badly financially that they couldn’t pay bills. On the outset they smiled and looked okay but inside, their cupboards were bare. Their neighbors didn’t know, nobody knew and it was found out by accident what they were living on.

    It seems that there is a stigma in that if a person needs food from a pantry that they must not want to work and only deserve what less than the best while we feast on the fat. Please, if you are the giving type and like to donate to pantries or if your work or community does a food drive and you decide to be a part of it, donate what you yourself would like. Be generous; give out of your abundance exactly what you would like if you were hungry.

    Donation Suggestions:

    Already complete boxed meals

    Tuna helpers and Tuna

    Pasta and Sauces

    Peanut Butter and Jelly or Honey

    Mac and Cheese/Canned Spaghetti or Spaghetti O’s

    Little Debbie Snacks, Raisons, Graham Crackers

    Cereal of all kinds

    Instant Oatmeal

    Canned goods

    Juice for children

    Toiletries and Household items such as detergent etc….

    Diapers of all sizes and Wipes

    Remember, it could be you or someone you love that needs help some day. Give what you think you would like to eat. Just because someone is down on their luck or poor doesn’t mean they want to live on canned beans and Spam.

  • Foods

    Power Foods for Women

    Foods photoWe all get tired throughout or work days. That mid afternoon crash is something we all have to deal with, or do we? Kick that crash out by having some of these that will give you the boost you need to get through the rest of your day, without breaking your diet!

    Power foods by definition are those that are rich in many nutrients, low on calories, and have the most healthful benefits.

    1.) Blueberries

    Energy Boosting Carbs
    Vitamin C
    83 Calories (per cup)

    are full of energy boosting carbs, contain fiber to help your digestive system do it’s job, vitamin C, and anthocyanin. Anthocyanin is what makes blueberries blue. It also helps prevent against certain types of cancer! On top of all of that, one cup of these tasty delights only contain 83 calories! Add them to your breakfast, yogurt, or eat them straight to help your energy level jump to unheard of mid-afternoon levels!

    2.) Yogurt

    Vitamin B12

    Yogurt has been proven to help the body protect against infection as well as help keep the digestive tract healthy. Vitamin B12 is well known to be an energy booster. Go for the low or fat free, and stay away from the over-flavored varieties.

    3.) Almonds


    Magnesium and fiber are two excellent energy boosting nutrients. Be advised that almonds are high in calories, and should be limited to only about 20 per serving. Also, eat them raw!

    4.) Peanut Butter

    Monounsaturated Fats
    Polyunsaturated Fats

    Peanut Butter is a delicious food. Not only that, it is portable, versatile, and can be added to just about any snack. Peanut butter has been shown to also combat diabetes and heart disease. In fact, The Journal of the American Medical Association said ‘Women who ate peanut butter or other forms of nuts at least five times a week lowered their risk of diabetes by 21 percent compared to those who didn’t.” Like any nuts, peanuts are very high in fiber and protein.

    5.) Avocados

    Vitamin C
    Vitamin B6

    Just half of an avocado contains only 160 calories. It also contains an the same amount of fiber as a piece of whole wheat toast, Vitamin C, and Vitamin B6. It also contains folate, a nutrient that reduces the levels of homocysteine, a chemical known for causing heart attacks. So, in stead of using butter or mayonnaise on your sandwich, try using avocado butter!

    6.) Chili Peppers

    Vitamin A
    Vitamin C

    Capsaicin is the chemical that makes ‘hot’ foods ‘hot’. It is also a well known appetite suppressant. Studies have shown that people who eat foods containing chili, cayenne, or other ‘hot’ foods, tend to eat less calories in a meal. Not only will you eat less, but the peppers also kick your metabolism into overdrive. It’s win-win! You eat less, and metabolize more! So if you are having a mid-afternoon meal, try to sprinkle chili peppers or chili powder on it, if it fits the meal!

    7.) Apples

    Pectin Fiber
    Minimal Fat

    Who would have thought? An apple a day, really could keep the doctor away! Apples are the basic staple of a brought-from-home lunch. Take one for your workday and you might be surprised at the health benefits they provide!

    Smokers, listen up! In a study presented before the American Thoracic Society, British researchers said “Apples were more effective than other fruits and vegetables in reducing the risk of developing serious disease, including lung cancer.” In another study, Dutch scientists found that smokers who ate an apple a day were half as likely to develop chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), an umbrella term for emphysema and chronic bronchitis.

    Not only that, but apples contain fiber, as well as a type of fiber called pectin. Pectin helps to reduce cholesterol and regulate blood sugar levels. It also contains Boron, which has been believed to increase your alertness and reduces calcium loss which could lead to osteoporosis.

    8.) Cranberries

    Vitamin A

    They are well known for their ability to fight off urinary tract infections. 10 ounces of juice per day is plenty adequate. In addition, research has shown that cranberries also help fend off colds and fight stomach bugs, gum disease, and certain types of cancer. Add cranberries to any of your cold or hot meals, or eat them as an afternoon snack. They add a wonderful taste to any cereal or yogurt, and are very healthy for you.

    9.) Fish

    Omega 3

    Eating seafood rich in omega-3 fatty acids up two twice a week could greatly reduce your risk of heart disease. Pregnant women, however, should stay away from mercury rich seafood. Swordfish, king mackerel, shark, and tilefish are all high in mercury. Albacore tuna should be limited to 6oz per week.

    10.) Tomatoes


    You say to’mayto’, I say to’mawto’. Tomatoes! The salad staples are packed full of healthy nutrients that are beneficial to your health. A single cup of spaghetti sauce will provide you with a full day’s recommended intake. Studies have shown that women with high amounts of lycopene in their diets have up to a 50% lower chance of developing breast cancer. Lycopene will also lower bad cholesterol and blood pressure. It may even help prevent macular degeneration and several types of cancers.

  • Tech

    New X-Ray Technology Takes Us Into the Future

    X-Ray photoHow good would it sound if the next time you were involved in an unfortunate accident that required you to receive an X ray, it would not be necessary for you to go to your usual emergency room or hospital that is often very crowded and can take hours to visit? I’m sure this sounds pretty good, except your probably wondering how this can be true.

    What makes something like this possible is a digital system enabling radiologists and doctors to have access to all information concerning MRI, X ray and CT images (BBC). This could simply be done on the computer screen instantly within their office.

    This is allowing patients to visit their local doctor or nurses office when the radiologists and doctors are not present; but is much more assessable to patients than busy hospitals. The images would then be sent to their doctors and they could respond to their patients as if they were in the same room. It saves the patients travel and makes the doctors work more efficient as well.

    Hospitals like St. Mary’s in West London have been using this groundbreaking technology for a year (BBC).

    Sometimes when nurses observe and study an x ray, they may have some questions in which they need answers immediately. This system is enabling them to contact doctors and experts to receive the help they need, when they need it.

    “The Picture Archiving and Communication System, or PACS, is part of the controversial NHS IT program in England” (BBC). It is costing £245m to set up methods to store the data images and £775 for the technology to create and send the images themselves. There have been skeptics to this new system due to high costs; however, many doctors and users of the new technology are strongly approving of its excellent use.

    Another tool this technology lends to the doctors is the ability to digitally enhance the images to better identify any problems. By increasing the contrast or zooming in on images, it can better and faster diagnose problems as compared to traditional methods. In addition, it can compare multiple images at a time to track patient progress and help to make changes more noticeable.

    The main complaint with the software so far is that it is not as intuitive and easy to use as it should be for professionals who are not all tech savvy. Eventually doctors hope to store many images and sources of information for all their patients to help track progress over long periods of time.

    Many medical professionals believe it is only a matter of time before this technology begins to catch onto more areas beyond England.

    Emma Wilkinson. “X-ray technology in the 21st century.” BBC News URL: ()



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  • Tech

    What is WordPress and Why Would You Build a Restaurant Website with It

    WordPress photo

    You own a restaurant business, and you are looking for a friendly and versatile website without spending too much money. Is it possible today, when major firms invest millions of dollars in theirs? Probably your searches brought you to WordPress, the most popular and easy way to build a website and to put it online

    However, as in any field, there are pros and cons to this Content Management System. influenced the online world for decades now. In the beginning, administrating a website was a complicated thing, but WordPress brought a new way to make sites easy to understand by everyone.

    It is not only small websites to use this CMS, but also major ones with complicated features. A WordPress website can be done fast, with minimum costs, and the result is satisfactory from the SEO point of view as well.

    Why WordPress?

    Initially, it was used as a blogging platform. You probably know the websites named yoursite.wordpress.com. These are free websites made with WP, but these are really simple and don’t have many features. The real trick is to use WordPress as a CMS and to build a website with any functionality you desire.

    WordPress is open-source, meaning anyone can contribute to its improvement. You can buy your own domain and build it with WP even if you don’t have coding skills. Instead of writing long lines of codes, WP allows you to create widgets, menus, modify colors, and manage your website at any level.

    As you don’t need to create everything from scratch, the solution is straightforward and cheap. A simple WP website can be built in a couple of days. Plus, Google is really friendly with WP websites, and this is an official statement of the search engine.

    As we are talking about Google, it is impossible to rank today with a website that is not mobile-friendly. WordPress has this covered as well, as most of the themes you can find there are already optimized for phones and tablets.

    WordPress needs a web hosting provider, in our case we use the services of 

    Cons of WordPress

    As with any technology, WP also has its limits. It has a general scope with many elements that are not always essential for every website. If you are looking for a completely personalized solution, you might need to build a static website.

    One example for which WP might not be such a great solution is a webshop with more than 10000 products. If you make it in WordPress, it might be slow and might crash for user searches. This happens as WP was initially a blogging platform, and it was later adapted for e-commerce. However, for a smaller shop, most of the developers would tell you WordPress is the ideal choice.

    Some programmers claim WP  is not safe as it is open-source. Well, we could say this is the beauty of it. Most vulnerabilities are discovered and fixed by passionate developers even before they are exploited. Therefore. every new WP update fixes known vulnerabilities and makes it safer for the future ones as well!


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  • Home

    A Modern Nursery For Your Baby: Find The Most Unique Set Of Nursery Items For Your New Born Baby

    Baby photoDesigning your baby’s nursery can be one of the most exciting times you would share with your spouse while anticipating the arrival of your new family member. Traditionally, baby nurseries are coloured with light, pastel hues or warm and loving shades. They are also endowed with fluffy pink stuffed rabbits or plush bluish-grey puppies. However, if you are a fan of contemporary art and have already adopted the modern look for the rest of your home, Modern Nursery may provide that extra extension of your appreciation for all that is unique and new into your baby’s room.

    Modern Nursery’s tag line is to “Begin Life in Style.” It shelves the whole range of baby products all with the contemporary effect.

    Modern furnishing in the nursery

    Modern Nursery allows chic mothers-to-be to decorate their baby’s room with artistic bed-covers, wall-papers, crib mobiles, rugs and even provides a range of interesting lights. Even your baby’s crib will look ridiculously modern – it will give bedtime a glossier more positive outlook if you are struggling with a child who refuses to sleep at night, as many babies do. To add the pizazz to sleep deprivation, a comfotable sofa or rocking chair will help you and your baby to settle down into a comfortable bedtime routine.

    Storage for baby’s belongings

    When a bouncing baby comes along, so do plenty of equipment that accompany him or her. Besides changing tables that have drawers, Modern Nursery extends their storage collection to a range of shelves and cabinets. These furniture items can fit the modern interior of your house while acting as a hiding place for beddings, out-grown baby clothes, toys and books as well as towels and bath equipment.

    Baby equipment in the rest of the house

    Baby equipment are not limited to the nursery. Highchairs, feeding utensils, backpacks, strollers are items that will grace your home when new baby arrives. Modern Nursery has also the designs that you will appreciate – just take a look at their highchair collection. In fact, some items such as their wall-art and lights will even gel effectively into your home’s ambience.

    Modern Nursery proves that nurseries need not remain full of white clouds and rainbows. They provide the opportunity to modern art lovers to incorporate contemporary designs into their children’s lives right from the beginning. Furthermore, this appreciation blends neatly into the interior decoration of their own home.

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  • Foods

    Foods that Relieve Stress

    Foods photoTimes are tough. There are no ifs, ands or buts about it. For some people that means living with stress. The effects stress can have on a person are profound. According to WebMD, stress can have a negative affect on the heart. It can also cause back pain, headaches, an upset stomach, nausea and diarrhea. Those are just some of the common symptoms.

    Stress over time can also affect the body. For instance, WebMD says over time it can cause your immune system to become weak. If you are stressed a lot you’ll likely get sick often. They say stress can also cause high blood pressure, low fertility and acne.

    Stress can also affect a person emotionally. WebMD says stress can affect the way a person feels, thinks and acts. For instance, when someone is stressed they may feel tired all the time or worry too much.

    So, now that you’re aware how stress can affect your body and well-being let’s talk about relief.

    Relief can come in many forms. For instance, you could exercise, get the recommended eight hours of sleep or eat to relieve stress. The best way to cope with stress is to find a method that works best for you.

    For the sake of this article we’ll focus on food. According to WebMD, food can fight stress in various ways. Some foods contain a calming brain chemical, while others can lower adrenaline.

    Below are five foods that WebMD says can relieve stress.

    Many comfort foods contain a calming brain chemical. An example, of a comfort food is a bowl of warm oatmeal.

    Complex Carbs
    Complex carbs are great at relieving stress because they help the brain make serotonin and make people feel balanced. Some examples are whole-grain breakfast cereals, breads, and pastas.

    Oranges have tons of vitamin C, which can reduce levels of stress hormones, while strengthening the immune system.

    Spinach has lots of magnesium, which can regulate cortisol levels.

    Bed time snacks
    Eating a bedtime snack can help you sleep better. It can also help the brain release serotonin. For instance, a glass of warm milk makes for a great bed time snack because it can relieve anxiety.

    Being stressed shouldn’t be taken lightly. Finding a way to relieve stress should become a priority because the affects it can have on the body or a person’s well-being are profound. Focusing on foods is just one of many methods that can work to relieve stress. If you choose to focus on food, it’s important to monitor what you eat. Make sure you’re not eating too much or too little. It’ll also be important to make sure you are eating well.

    List of SourcesDiet

    1. for stress management slideshow: stress-reducing food. WebMD.
    2. Stress Management – Effects of Stress. WebMD.
  • Foods

    How To Save Money On Groceries Now: Top Tips for Saving on Your Food Bill

    Groceries  photoWith crashing stock markets and closures looming like summer storm clouds, American’s purse strings are pulled tighter than ever before. Your average working family’s income is now going toward the rising cost of household bills instead of savings and investments. Desperate times call for desperate measures but saving money on food doesn’t always have to be at the expense of quality. Check out these money saving tips to help you save a bundle on your grocery bill.

    Buying Generics

    OK, so generic brands might not have the best reputation but it really isn’t as bad as it sounds. Many generic brands are almost exactly the same as their name brand counterparts. In fact, many are made in the same factories and plants. Just because the products aren’t name brand doesn’t mean they are sub par. But buyers should beware of off brand vegetables and cleaning products. The veggies tend to have undesirable pieces (ex: stems) and cleaning products can be watered down.


    That mailer in the mailbox every week used to be trash but don’t be so quick to head to the can. Take some time to browse through it because they often have good deals and can point you to the super markets with the best sales. Weekly mailers usually come toward the end of the week (Thursday or Friday) and are good for the coming Sunday to Saturday.

    Price Club Cards

    Most of the larger chain markets have “club cards.” It only takes a second to fill out the paperwork and you can usually get your card on the spot. These are good for taking advantage of “members only” deals which can change from week to week. “Club cards” are especially useful during the holiday season because they often allow shoppers the chance to accumulate points to earn free products like holiday hams and turkeys.

    Super Stores

    Super stores are a good choice because they allow shoppers to but in bulk and save money on gas. Instead of running around town picking up this and that, shoppers can do all of their shopping under one roof.

    More money saving tips include buying locally made products (they cost less because it has to travel shorter distance), visiting farmer’s markets for fresh produce, and turning leftovers into new meals.

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  • Tech

    Technology: Wii, Mii, and Getting Ahead

    Technology photoWhen it comes to computers and technology, I can usually figure things out– mostly out of perseverance. That isn’t to say that I necessarily like it or that I’m even close to being technologically advanced. In some ways, it’s really gotten irritatingly fast and furious. Damn those printer drivers and software updates that have rendered the “scanner” function of my perfectly good printer useless. (Thanks again, HP!)

    It was only last year that I finally got an ipod. I do enjoy it, especially for working out and music on the go. Yet, I’m only utilizing a fraction of its memory and I’ve run out of data. I can’t even fill 4GB. Does that make me an ipod loser? Then again, I’m not a downloader. I still come from the school of CDs and full-length albums. It just seems strange for me to download an itune.

    I don’t have texting on my cell phone. There are no games or apps and I can’t surf the internet with a click of a button or check my e-mail remotely. I’m on Facebook, but I can’t even begin to compete with those who change their profile pic every couple of days and put way too much thought into coming up with a catchy, cool status update to send from their iPhone

    I got a GPS for Christmas two years ago and it was only six months ago that I finally got around to opening the box.

    “This is actually pretty convenient,” I thought as I wondered why I hadn’t tried it earlier.

    This year, I got Wii Fit Plus for Christmas. I decided to be more “up on things” this time around so I hooked it up. Although, it will never replace my regular workout, it definitely has its pluses– especially on those rare, rainy L.A. days– like today. I like the balance games– namely the snowboarding, the ski slalom and even the aerobic hula hooping even though I feel

    Some, okay most, of this technology is highly unnecessary. We’ve just allowed ourselves to get lazy and bored. I was perfectly fine without the ipod, the GPS, the Wii, and even e-mail [way back when] but all of it opens up a new world of possibilities.

    When jogging with the Wii, for instance, a friend pointed out, “OR you could just jog for real outside…” Well, yeah, sure I could, but Wii jogging in place in front of a faux waterfall won’t replace real jogging– it’s just a different experience.

    Microwaves have become ubiquitous, yet they still haven’t replaced ovens. And we were, I might mention, the last family in the neighborhood to get a microwave. (My mom was convinced that it was shooting radiation microwaves into our brains. I guess the jury’s still out on that. I still try not to stand in front of the microwave for that very reason.)

    In short, technology has its ups and downs. Some days I hate, hate it and other days, the convenience factor makes me never want to look back. On the other hand, some people have trouble looking forward. To this day, my mom still has dial-up internet. She can’t even view episodes of our web series, “It’s Always Smoggy In L.A.” and she pays more than I do for DSL. Her new years resolution is high-speed. By the time she gets it, technology will be onto the next big thing and we’ll both be left in the dust.

    Certainly things will continue to somersault ahead of me faster than I want to follow, but technology has certainly improved some things. Although, HP, if you’re out there, stop with the software updates– seriously. Not all of us can afford to get a whole new system of doing things every time you decide to upgrade.


  • Home

    Recycled Wood Floors and Lumber for the Home: Despite Weak U.S. Housing Market, Demand Grows for Reclaimed Wood

    Wood Floors photoRecycling lumber is easier on the environment but can be harder on the wallet. Though more expensive than new lumber, there are good reasons for using reclaimed wood for construction projects and flooring.

    Environmental Benefits of Using Reclaimed Lumber for Construction

    Aside from the obvious advantage of having to cut fewer trees, reclaimed lumber benefits the environment in additional ways. While some energy-intensive processing is required to make recycled lumber useable, it’s significantly less than the amount needed to turn standing trees into building lumber.

    Construction Benefits of Recycled Lumber

    After years of lumbering in all parts of the United States, most of the construction grade lumber is from second growth forests, most old growth wood having been harvested long ago. Most reclaimed lumber that is salvaged from old buildings is from old growth trees. This means that it is denser and has straighter grain then new wood. Recycled wood is more stable than new wood; any warping or shrinking caused by drying happened long ago.

    Pricing of Reclaimed Lumber for Building

    The use of reclaimed lumber is easier on the environment, and less easy on the wallet. It may cost more than new wood because of the work that goes into preparing the wood for reuse. Most recycled lumber comes from old barns, factories, and warehouses, which have to be disassembled by hand to provide reusable wood.

    Recycled Wood for Flooring

    While business is down in construction and related fields, sales are still fairly strong for tongue and groove wood flooring reclaimed from old barns, homes and factories. People interested in building or remodeling green homes buy it because they like the idea of using a recycled product. As with reclaimed lumber, it’s not the price point that makes it popular as it can cost $3 or more per square foot than new flooring that has been prefabricated to look old.

    Modern machinery, however, cannot precisely duplicate the look that a hundred or more years of wear imparts on a wood floor. It’s the patina and the random digs and dings that help make these old floors look warm and lived in. More and more homeowners are willing to pay a little extra to do their bit for the earth and bring the warmth and charm of old and mellowed wood into their homes.

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