Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween Candy--Tricks or Treats?

We usually have around 200 Trick or Treaters on Halloween. Since we really don't have any little children in our neighborhood these kids are coming from other places around town. Needless to say, we don't usually have any candy left. Which is a good thing--I don't need the extra calories!

That’s Fit" recently took a walk down the candy aisle to investigate popular candies. While they don’t say any particular candy is healthy, there are definitely some choices that are better than others. (I don't really know what is worse though, the fat or the sugar amounts.)

5th Avenue (1 full-size bar) — 280 calories, 14g fat
Snickers (1 full-size bar) — 280 calories, 14g fat
Twix Caramel (2 bars) — 280 calories, 14g fat
Baby Ruth (1 full-size bar) — 280 calories, 13g fat
Butterfinger (1 full-size bar) — 270 calories, 11g fat
Milky Way (1 full-size bar) — 260 calories, 10g fat
Mr. Goodbar (1 full-size bar) — 210 calories, 14g fat

Trident Gum (1 stick) — 5 calories, 0g fat
Smarties (1 roll) — 25 calories, 0g fat
Tootsie Roll (1 piece) — 50 calories, 1g fat
Pixy Stix (7 straws) — 60 calories, 0g fat
Hershey Kisses (3) — 75 calories, 1.5g fat
Jolly Rancher Gummies (10 pieces) — 120 calories, 0g fat
York Peppermint Patty (1 piece) — 140 calories, 2.5g fat”

For more scary reading check out this post on more Halloween Candy facts.

(Do you raid your child's Halloween stash?)

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Thursday, October 24, 2013

16 Things I Know To Be True

I think about a lot of things when I'm running. (In fact that's what caused me to trip and fall today! Should have been paying more attention to the uneven sidewalk). Here are a few of the things that I came up with on my last run.

1. Being kind to strangers is always a good thing.

2. If your significant other wants to go fishing--let him! You'll both be happier in the long run. (I enjoy having that "me" time.)

3.Smoking is so bad for your skin--it really ages you fast.

4.Boots and shoes are always a good purchase.

5. Using coupons to buy things you wouldn't normally buy isn't a good thing but getting 30% off on a fabulous pair of shoes may be worth it...)

6.  If you ignore your health it will go away.

7.  Holding on to grudges just makes you bitter and gives the other person power.

8.  Happiness is a choice. On your darkest day you can still make your burdens lighter if just for a moment.

9.  Sometimes being still for 20 minutes is just as therapeutic as going for a run.

10.  Finding something to be grateful for is a wonderful way to start the day.

11.  Hugs are always welcome.

12,  Presents aren't important, people are. (We figured this out last Christmas.)

13.  Money doesn't buy happiness they say but it sure puts a smile on my face to buy a new purse!

14. Children love seeing photographs of themselves printed and displayed around the house.

15.  Spending time with your grandchildren is absolutely priceless!

16.  If you've got one really good friend then you are a very rich person.

I continue to be blessed with a great family and wonderful friends. I'm grateful everyday for my health and being able to run and get caught up in my thoughts.

Here's to a wonderful Fall and a season of thanks and blessings!
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Monday, October 21, 2013

Spooky Glowing Eye Hallloween Craft

I like decorating my house for Halloween. Since it gets quite chilly here this time of year I like to keep it simple so I don't have to spend a lot of time outside putting up decorations or taking them down. I spotted this cute craft here and decided it was easy and wouldn't take much time or supplies. I've been saving toilet paper tubes but paper towel tubes or wrapping paper tubes (cut into smaller tubes) I think would work too.

Supplies For This Easy Halloween Craft

•toilet paper rolls

How To Make Spooky Glowing Eyes

1.Crease 1 side of the TP roll and cut out 2 triangles.(or whatever shape you want your eyes to be)
2.Make a small hole at the top of the tube.
3.String the piece of string through the hole. Tie a few knots so it’s big enough to not come through the hole.
4.Tape 1 end of the tube shut with tape.
5.Activate the glow stick and put it in the tube.
6.Tape the other end of the tube shut.
7.Hang them up in the kids room or hang them on a tree on Halloween night!

I plan to stick these in the shrubs in front of my house. It will be a spooky look without being too scary for the little Trick or Treaters.

Do you decorate for Halloween?

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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Try it, You'll Like it---Spaghetti Squash

My daughter Rana is eating Gluten Free so she introduced us to this new menu item. Spaghetti Squash! I had heard of it, but had never tried it. (Truthfully, I have never really liked squash so I was a little reluctant to try it.) When we visited Rana and Cody in Colorado this past summer she gave us a taste. We were hooked but here in MN this squash is harder to find.
The spaghetti squash before it was baked.

Two days ago while I was grocery shopping lo and behold--I saw a spaghetti squash! I knew I had to buy it and try it. Rana's directions are to poke some holes in the squash. Then bake it for an hour on 350. Take it out of the oven and cut it in half being very careful because it is VERY HOT! Scrape out the guts and seeds. Then scrape out the squash.
The spaghetti squash out of the oven. See the seeds?

Not like long spaghetti...

At first it didn't look too much like spaghetti but as I kept scraping it actually became spaghetti like. We put our favorite spaghetti sauce on top. Dee-licious!! Hubby said he likes it better than real spaghetti. It's healthier too.

I kept some of the seeds to try to grow my own spaghetti squash next year. Rana grows her own but her soil and climate are a little different than mine. She can also buy them at her grocery store when they are out of season here.

You have got to give it a try. Oh my gosh, on Pinterest there are tons of great recipes! I'm heading back to the store to buy some more squash. (I think they keep for awhile.)

Easy, delicious and healthy. Can't ask for more than that!!!

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Sunday, October 13, 2013

Still Playing With Dolls

I've been trying to build my portfolio. My dream is to become a professional photographer but maybe it will just be that--a dream.

My family is tired of me asking to take their photos so I have been looking elsewhere. My sister-in-law gave my name to a co-worker. This person has an adorable little 18 month old daughter who has never had her pictures taken professionally. I offered to do a mini-session for her in exchange for a model release for me and digital photos of her little girl for her.

Long story short...we scheduled a session three different times. Always an excuse. Today was the last straw. I had worked hard to put together some cute ideas/backdrops/props. I was also open to just photographing her little girl wandering around my backyard if need be. (Can an 18 month old sit very long? Probably not.) She emailed me with another excuse and no-show.

I was SO disappointed. I really wanted to photograph this little one. Being so cute I knew her photos would be a big plus in my portfolio. I couldn't believe that this woman would turn down a FREE session to get photos of her little girl. I guess not everyone values quality photos. Since I didn't talk to her I'll probably never know the real story. (Unless my SIL gets it at work.)

Well, I just couldn't let those sets go to waste. Since I couldn't find anyone else to photograph (and it was gorgeous here today!)I dug out my Cabbage Patch Doll. She hasn't been played with forever so she was happy to oblige although it's not the same as a real little girl.

Here are a couple of pics. Use your imagination to swap a live little girl for my doll!

My stand-in.

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Sunday, October 6, 2013

Autumn Blues

Autumn Beauty

This time of year it's hard not to get the autumn blues. Here in MN we've lost not only our warm temps but hours of daylight. If you're like me, you might need some help to chase away those blues.

*Try lighting a candle. It's warmth and encouragement will help to add some light to the dark evenings of autumn. I like to use a fall aroma such as pumpkin spice, cranberry or cinnamon. (An alternative to using a lit candle would be to try a reed diffuser. You'll get the wonderful fragrance but not the light and warmth.)

*Make a cup of herbal tea or hot chocolate. It's a pleasure just to hold the warm cup!

*Take a soothing bath. A warm soak after a chilly day is just what you need. Using oats in your bath is a terrific way to soothe the skin.

*Dig out the warm, fuzzy socks and slippers. Keeping your feet warm helps you feel warm all over.

*Keep exercising. This seems like a chore sometimes and I think I just don't have the energy. In reality, if you exercise, you'll have more energy to fight off those blues. Add some of your favorite music to get motivated. Taking a hike/walk through the woods to look at the Fall color helps too! 

*Spend more time with your favorite people. This is a great time to snuggle up with someone special!

These are just a few ways to make the days of autumn go by just a little faster. Soon it will be the holidays and that's a subject for another day! Check out Gathered From The Garden's delightful bath soaks. A little autumn treat to pamper yourself!

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Friday, October 4, 2013

Kudos to Ford

Admiring their new Ford Flex

My daughter Rana and her husband Cody live in Colorado on the Front Range. While their particular neighborhood didn't suffer much from the rains and flooding the school Rana teaches at had water problems, friends of theirs lost all to the flood and many roads near them were covered in water.

This summer Rana and Cody were here for a visit and ended up buying a new Ford Flex. (a VERY comfortable car!) She emailed us this week and said they had gotten a letter from FORD. The letter said that in light of the devastating flooding in Colorado if they needed to have their car payments deferred FORD would be willing to work with them.

While Rana and Cody won't need to take advantage of the offer, it was very good of FORD to make the offer. It's nice to know that the big guys are willing to help out those in need.

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