Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Happy Tea Time!

I found the cutest thing during my visit in New Orleans over Thanksgiving holiday.
My father-in-law loves to go to yard/garage sales and this is one of things I found.

A lovely little creamer! I love the color and the design.

The handle makes it very easy to pick up and pour...

The pitcher is called "Calico," made by the Crownford China Co., Inc.
in Staffordshire, England.
I just might have to start me a collection of these!! 

Another great and unusual find was the Crawfish Jelly. The Hot Jalapeno Jelly was very delicious. We put that on our toast one morning. The Crawfish Jelly was a little different and certainly NOT for breakfast! LOL! I could see using it on your cornbread with some red beans and rice.

Some wonderful teas I used while in New Orleans were the Pumpkin Spice (delightful for the holiday), the Mint Medley (quite an eye-opener in the mornings), and my favorite, Earl Grey, decaffeinated. And, of course, after opening each one, I breathed in the aromas from the packages.

Pumpkin has many healthful benefits. Pumpkin has the power to alter disease processes in the body. The bright color shows the wealth of beta-carotene which help neutralize free radicals and reduce the risk of cancer. It promotes eye health and guards against macular degeneration. It has lots of vitamin A and C as well as alpha-hydroxy acids, which reduce the signs of aging in skin.
Pumpkin seeds are high in magnesium, manganese, phosphorus, and protein.

I am joining Sandi for Tea Time.

Here's to your health!

The Lord heals your diseases, redeems your life from the pit, satisfies you with good, shows compassion to his children,, and knows your frame. The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
Psalm 103: 3-14

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

Here are a few helpful suggestions from Dr. Leigh Connealy for this Holiday Season!!

   1. Digestion begins in the mouth. Chew your food at least 20 to 30 times. Saliva contains digestie enzymes that start breaking down food so our bodies can access nutrients.
   2. Hold the beverages. Only sip room-temperature, clean, filtered water, but forget about guzzling ice cold drinks. Drinking while eating dilutes digestive acids.
   3. Eat less more often. Big meals that force too much food into the stomach challenge our digestive systems. It also overwhelms your body with sharp increases in blood sugar, requiring the pancreas to produce more insulin. So eat a little now and a little later.
   4. Don't sleep on it. Eating too much close to bedtime is a big no-no, especially those with digestive problems. Lying down makes it easy for stomach secretions to travel up into the esophagus, where they can damage tissue.
   5. Avoid food triggers. Most people know their "trigger" foods. Be careful of rich, fatty foods and chocolate (sorry ladies). Most spicy dishes, citrus fruits and juices, and caffeine. Dr. Connealy says, "If you got a painful shock every time you opened a particular door, would you keep opening it?" Something to think about.
   6. Power up digestion with probiotics. Digestive disorders respond fairly quickly to the appropriate supplements. Dr. Connealy recommends a probiotic supplement containing at least 10 billion live organisms. But talk to your doctor and see what they suggest.
   7. Meet MELATONIN: Digestive Superstar! I had no idea!! Melatonin is not only good for jet-lag and insomnia, it is also good for the digestion. Research shows that melatonin protects against indigestion, gastrointestinal reflux disease (GERD), ulcers, lesions in the esophagus and irritable bowel syndrome. Dr. Connealy suggests 1mg for women and 3mg for men. Best taken at night. You'll find you sleep better, too.
   8. Supportive supplements: digestive enzymes are excellent to ease gastrointestinal symptoms. These enzymes are helpful for treating lactose intolerance to pancreatic insufficiency. Find one that targets your specific digestive issue and follow the dosage instructions. Others to consider with this are aloe vera, licorice root, mastic gum, slippery elm, okra leaf, and fenugreek. All sold in health food stores.

Here's a healthy Tender Tummy Smoothie shared by Dr. Connealy:

2-to-3 chamomile tea bags
1 cup boiling water
1/2 cup low-fat milk (may substitute almond or rice milk)
1 ripe organic banana
1 cup cubed papaya
1 tsp grated fresh ginger

Pour boiling water over chamomile tea bags and allow to steep for five minutes. Remove tea bags and let tea cool a bit. Blend milk or milk substitute, banana, papaya, ginger, and tea until thoroughly mixed. ENJOY!

There you have it!! Here's to your health!!

The Lord heals your diseases,, redeems your life from the pit, satisfies you with good, shows compassion to his children, and knows your frame. The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
Psalm 103: 3-14

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

TEA TIME! Tuesday is the Best!

Here is a lovely music box that I would love to share with you today.

It is a Kerrie Reynolds original.

My wonderful husband gave me this a long time ago.
I love the beautiful flowers and birds that decorate it.

The little box plays "Love Me Tender," and my husband does
a wonderful impression of Elvis!

A long time ago, my youngest son found this cross in the
middle of a parking lot somewhere and brought it to me.
I placed it inside the music box.

This is my Betty Boop lip gloss.
I just didn't have the heart to destroy her!

I was looking for Christmas gifts the other day for my two granddaughters
and look what I found; TEACUP PIGGIES!
They were sooooo cute I couldn't pass them up.

Their little feet were also stamped Teacup Piggies.

We will surely have to have a tea party!!

Now I would like to introduce you to another favorite tea of mine;
Cinnamon Spice.  Cinnamon supports healthy blood sugar levels,
which may be helpful for type 2 diabetes sufferers.
The connection between cinnamon and heart health is that diabetes 
and cholesterol are risk factors of heart disease.
Cinnamon is good for the heart.

In December 2003, a study was published in Diabetes Care who states:
"In conclusion, cinnamon reduced serum glucose, triglyceride, total cholesterol, and LDL cholesterol levels n people with type 2 diabetes. Because cinnamon would not contribute to caloric intake, those who have type 2 diabetes or those who have elevated glucose, triglyceride, LDL cholesterol, or total cholesterol levels may benefit from the regular inclusion of cinnamon in their daily diet. In addition, cinnamon may be beneficial for the remainder of the population to prevent and control elevated glucose and blood lipid levels."
Please know that in this study the amounts of cinnamon were much 
larger than what is typically used in cooking and seasoning.

People taking diabetes medicines or any medications that affect glucose or insulin levels shouldn't take therapeutic doses of cinnamon unless they are under the direction of a doctor.

I love the flavor of this tea and the aroma is delightful.
This particular blend has cinnamon, rose hips, hibiscus
flowers, apples, orange peel, lemon grass, spice, peppermint leaves,
chamomile, carob, licorice root, barley malt, and natural flavors.
WOW! This tea it packed with good benefits!!

My other most favorite thing to do is after opening
and removing the teabag, place your nose
over the open bag and inhale real deep...
Ahhh, the smell is fabulous. If you like it, take another deep breath!
It will sooth your soul...

I am very thankful for freedom, for my country,
for my children, grandchildren
and great grandchild. I am thankful for all
my friends; those that I do know and
also those that I have become to know
through blogging. All of you are
a true blessing to me.

Here's to your health!

Artful Affirmations is hosting this weeks Tea Time Tuesday.

The Lord heals your diseases, redeems your life from the pit, satisfies you with good, shows compassion to his children, and knows your frame. The Lord is merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love.
Psalm 103: 3-14

Monday, November 21, 2011

Rock Star Mosaics

I would like to introduce you to my wonderful Rock Star husband, Michael.
He has a very funny disposition and I have learned a lot from him through the years, 
like having patience, understanding, and love.
(The t-shirt he is wearing was designed by our granddaughter Victoria.)
It doesn't matter the situation, my wonderful husband will always find humor in it.
He makes me laugh more than anyone I know. 
I fell in love with him because he makes me laugh.

Michael has played guitar since he was a child. He loves 
the old classic rock and roll, but plays a variety of music. 
He is also a song writer and loves to perform.
He was also listed in the very FIRST issue of Guitar Magazine.

It's not always easy living with a Rock Star. I'm day, he's night.
But when the love is there, it forges through...
I believe it is true that is said,
LOVE conquers all things.

I am linking with  Little Red House and Lavender Cottage for Mosaic Monday.

Photos by Brenda Stevens
Flyer created by Brenda Stevens

Friday, November 18, 2011

My First PINK Saturday

Some are just beginning while others are coming to an end.

Take a look inside. Some don't like what they see; others have good seeds to share.

Reflect the purpose of what life has to offer.

Grow to strengths immeasurable.

Quench your thirst with the Living Water.

Let your Little Light shine!!

Surround yourself with beauty. Be joyful in the day.

Open up to the sunshine and breathe in the wind.

I give thanks for the little things that are enormous in His sight.

I am linking with Leisure Lane during this Pink Saturday.

All photos by Brenda Stevens.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Can We "Older" Women REALLY Beat Belly Fat?

Now that I am on the backside of 50....uh hmmm...I find it harder and harder to control my weight. Just recently I have not been able to control the belly fat. So I take off to the doctors to find out what I can do. I am diagnosed with Adrenal Fatigue, which causes my adrenals to pump out more of the hormone that causes belly fat that's so affectionately called "menopot." I am told that during menopause, most women gain a pound every year unless they change their exercise and eating patterns.  So now I am on this quest to see if it can be reversed; the belly fat, not the menopause...I think once you're in it, you're in it...COL (chuckle out loud)

Even if you don't have any weight gain during perimenopause, your cloths may not fit like they used to because fat redistributes from the limbs to the abdomen. Research from Rush University Medical Center  is showing that higher levels of testosterone promotes this, rather than lower estrogen. It is suggested that a good core workout like pilates can help. Well, I guess this exercise will now have to be added to my daily walking.

Did you know that gaining 20 pounds during menopause can increase your risk of heart disease, diabetes and stroke, not to mention breast cancer! BUT this can all be reversed. And I am trying my hardest (more than I ever have in my life) to make these changes. I am in the gym now at least 4 times a week. I wasn't able to go to the gym last night, so I got on my Healthrider for 30 minutes, burning a little over 500 canaries. (I really have to be more careful with my diet on the weekends. I tend to "allow" myself to have more than I should.)

For me, it is frustrating to cut back on my diet and find that it still doesn't work to shed those pounds, but I am told there are two factors to this; age and body composition. When we are sedentary we lose muscle as we age. This slows the metabolism because muscle cells require more energy to function and when lost, overall calorie needs decrease and weight is gained even with a marginal diet. Whew, all of this is just a perfect storm for belly fat!  NOW I KNOW and can BEGIN NOW to correct it!
To combat this belly fat, I believe I should add weight training to the routine. At least with two 20-minute sessions to start out with. Don't worry folks, I will consult with my doctor first!

According to Joan Endyke, registered dietitian with a master's degree in nutrition and food science, and a certified personal trainer, "with fat storage shifted to the abdominal area, insulin may not work as well and linger in the blood stream, creating inflammation and making it more challenging to lose weight. To minimize this, limit or avoid simple carbohydrates such as white bread, pasta, crackers, soda, juices, sweetened coffees, cookies and others. Replace them with anti-inflammatory foods such as whole fruits, vegetables, oatmeal and other whole grains, cinnamon, small amounts of nuts, and lean proteins such as fish and chicken."

She also gives a tip to "eat a 100-calorie-pack of almonds one hour before meals to quell appetite and then skip the starch and pile on the non-starchy vegetables such as broccoli, asparagus or green beans to accompany a lean protein."  Good advice Joan!!

So get out there and exercise and eat better foods.
Here's to your health!

Photos by Microsoft

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

No TEACUP for Teacup Tuesday

I don't have any lovely or eloquent teacups to show, but 
I would like to share with you a couple of wonderful
things I found at an antique store.

I call them Ling-Ling and Shi-Shu. I have had them for
a very long time. Some time ago, when I had time to 
create lovely things, I purchased antiqued what-nots
to add to my creations. Before I could use Ling-Ling
and Shi-Shu for an art project, I had to be swept away 
into the corporate world never to have time to create
another art piece.

They are a couple of very adorable pieces.
I am not sure, but are they Japanese or Chinese?

I don't remember Ling-Ling's face being like this and I
wonder if it would be OK for me to touch her up.
I am not sure if that would "de-face" her, so to speak.
What do you think?

And Shi-Shu looks like he has a milk mustache now.

It seemed appropriate to introduce Ling-Ling and Shi-Shu
so that I can introduce a tea...

This is TAZO, "The Reincarnation of Tea"
It is said that various herbs and natural remedies such as green tea
may be helpful in reducing symptoms and preventing acid reflux.
Of course, caffeine can be a factor, so you might have to go
with the decaffeinated kind.
Before using herbs and medicinal teas, check with your health
practitioner to be sure they are right for your condition.

It says it all on the tea bag.
The Chinese have used green tea medicinally for centuries.
According to research, green tea possesses properties that may
be helpful in reducing symptoms of acid reflux,
esophageal cancer, and Barrett's esophagus
This green tea sounds DIVINE!
I love this tea. With a flavor of lemongrass and spearmint
sets this green tea to sooth what ails you.

Lemongrass research shows that it has properties to
kill cancer cells in vitro,while leaving healthy cells unharmed.
And it seems that Spearmint has some great properties, too.

And you can have this fantastic tea, hot or cold.

Here's to your health!

I am linking today with Cottage and Creek.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Lipstick and Highheels.....Mosaic Monday!

God has blessed me with such two beautiful little granddaughters that just ROCK my world.
No matter what I try to teach them, it always comes back to me for I have these two to remind me what I say. This pair keeps me on my toes, and I don't mean high heels...LOL.

At a very early age, they were drawn to high heel shoes and lipstick! So I tell them although their beauty on the outside is awesome that it is equally important to have beauty on the inside. They find an interest in all of the Princess stories. They LOVE being the Princess, so when one is in a bad mood, I say, "Oh, so you decided to be the bad witch today." Which gets them to thinking that they really don't have to be ugly to anyone if they are having a bad moment. It seems to help them work through their mood for they DON'T want to be the bad witch. It gives us a chance to talk about what is really bothering them.

This is Leila. She is now 6 years old. She loves the theater, acting, dancing, and getting her flowers after her performances. Her favorite color is pink.

This is Victoria. She is now 9 years old. She loves dancing, acting, drawing, and eating ice cream. Her favorite color use to be purple, but now it is blue. She is a wonderful big sister to Leila.

These two are inseparable! They really try to work out their differences and make the BEST out of every day! They are BEST FRIENDS!

There they are.....the LIGHTS of my life.

I am joining Roberta for Mosaic Monday!

My child, hold on to your wisdom and insight. Never let them get away from you.
Proverbs 3:21

Photos taken by Brenda Stevens