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Showing posts from November, 2013

What Are Trans-Fatty Acids Anyway?

Written for The River Current Publication     While spending some time with my niece last Saturday, I excitedly blurted out…”Hey, how cool is it that the FDA is proposing a ban on trans-fatty acids?”   To which she returned a blank stare and said, “Um, sure Aunt Con….whatever that means.”   Lol…isn’t it funny that when we have our attention focused on something, that we assume everyone else does as well? Some may ask, what in the heck is a trans-fatty acid anyway?      Trans-fats are vegetable oils that have been mixed with hydrogen to increase shelf life and mimic the flavor and feel of butter or lard.   Trans-fats can be found in many processed foods, including crackers, cookies, frozen pies, baked goods, microwave popcorn and other snacks, frozen pizza, coffee creamers, refrigerated dough products (like biscuits and cinnamon rolls), ready-to-use frostings, vegetable shortenings and stick margarine.   Trans-fats are often used to improve the texture, shelf life or flavo

Pumpkin Doughnut Pleasure

Written for The River Current Publication      I think I have said this before, but I just have to say it again…I love all things pumpkin!   If one doesn’t share my love of pumpkin around this time of year, I suppose it could be a difficult thing.    All that one could do I suppose, would be to sit back and wait for the pumpkin madness to subside!   As we have slipped into the magnificence of a Mid-Western fall season, you will find in my kitchen simmering pots of pumpkin chili, pumpkin breads, pumpkin pies, pumpkin muffins, pumpkin coffees…well, I think you get the pumpkin picture!     For the last couple of weeks I have been craving a good pumpkin doughnut.   I have always been a huge fan of doughnuts, but in my quest for eating healthier, doughnuts are now a ‘once in a blue moon’ kind of treat for me.         I decided to try my luck at baking my doughnuts, rather than the typical fried version…making them a much healthier option.   What can I say…p

Adjusting our Sails

          As a rule, I try to remain upbeat and positive.  Some days sadness and frustration just seem to seep in and attempt to crowd out my happy.  Perhaps I am wrong, but I do believe we all at times experience this roller coaster of emotions that life can throw our way.      In my NTP training we discussed the important role that emotional health plays in our overall health and well being.  For me it is therapeutic to dump my feelings here at my keyboard.  Thank you for 'listening'.        I excitedly can share that a week that started out sad and weepy has ended on a very high note.   The last couple of days I have had some surprising and positive things shower upon me.  It is amazing how inspiring a glimmer of hope and possibility will renew our strength and optimism of better things ahead?  We must be patient and adjust our sails.               

11.12.13 Random Anniversary Thoughts

Last week was a shit storm of unpleasantness for me.  For the last week it seems, I have fought back tears and sadness.  Silly things such as a looney ex-husband, rudeness, rejection and the death of a friend's husband; they all seemed to pile up on me like the autumn leaves in my back yard....or cow shit out in a pasture...they just kept piling up!   Perhaps also tucked in the back of my mind were the memories of the beautiful wedding weekend that Rick and I shared two years ago today.  I shared on my blog, Marital Status: W  last year, how I have always been fascinated with the unique sequencing of numbers on a calendar...weird, I know.  Special dates that will never occur again.  Rick and I had teased each other when trying to select such a numerical sequence for our wedding day.  Today the uniqueness of 11/12/13, for some silly reason even brought tears to my eyes.  What a cool date...Rick would have liked it, just as I do.   It is almost unimaginable that it has b

Aunt Nancy's Creamy Cauliflower Soup

Written for The River Current publication, November 7, 2013       It is interesting how the popularity of some foods will come and go.   Not so long ago, Brussels sprouts were all the rage…roasted, or thinly shaved into salads.   Prior to these new presentations, I admittedly was never a big fan of these small (sometimes stinky) orbs.     Well apparently, there is a newcomer to the world of re-invented foods…cauliflower.   Cauliflower just might be the new Brussels sprout.   Cauliflower perhaps is a bit more visibly appealing than a Brussels sprout; but besides the eye appeal, cauliflower also has some appealing nutritional benefits to be considered….it is low in fats and carbs and high in vitamin C.   It can be eaten raw, grated, steamed, roasted or mashed.     While at the grocery last week, I was tempted by a display of beautiful orange cauliflowers.   I couldn’t resist.   Orange cauliflower has higher than normal levels of beta carotene…25 times the

This Is Bentley

  I took this picture the other day.  I thought it was adorable and for some silly reason wanted to share it with you!  This is my stinky friend and companion, Bentley the basset.     Sharing Bentley with you doesn't actually have any thing to do with nutrition, health or wellness.  Actually, Bentley is least that's what everyone tells me.  Isn't it funny, that when we are constantly around something, that we just don't notice things that others instantly see on the occasional visit.  My oldest son just shakes his head at me when he sees our Bentley.    Bentley is a mild, loving sort who doesn't ask for much...just his favorite hammie snacks that I keep under the kitchen sink.  For some absurd reason, I have always wanted a basset.  I think it comes from those days long ago when we would all gather around the T.V. and watch the silly program...Hee Haw.  (Now that dates me!)  Anyway, on the show they always had a lazy basset hound laying