Thursday, August 30, 2007

Assorted Tidbits

Tangy fruit loves the limelight: Look for limes with smooth skin and no brown spots; avoid hard, dried-out limes. The fruit should be heavy for its size and give slightly when pressed. Fresh limes will last a about 10 days in the refrigerator. Buster Dean – Houston Chronicle Flavor Section

Cabbage that keeps it cool keeps it nutrients: Is there an appreciable loss of nutrients when you salt a vegetable, such as cabbage, and drain off the moisture that is released? According to W. Craig Byrdwell, a chemist at the Agricultural Research Service (a branch of the USDA), the method would not result in an appreciable loss of nutrients because you’re not subjecting the cabbage to heat. There would be a small loss of vitamin C and minerals but less than if the cabbage were steamed, for example. Generally, steaming will preserve more nutrients than boiling, and using less water for boiling will help retain more nutrients and minerals that using a great amount of water, Byrdwell says. Nutrients that suffer the greatest losses from boiling or blanching are vitamin C, vitamin A and folic acid.

Keep a tight lid on your honey: The darker a honey’s color, the more intense the flavor. Once opened, honey will keep for up to a year if stored at room temperature in a tightly sealed container. Everyday food- Fridge Clip.

For the whole truth, read the label: Myth or fact? Multigrain foods are always made with whole grains. Myth. The only way to know for sure is to see if “whole” is in front of every grain in the ingredient list. “Multigrain” means only that the product was made with several grains; you can’t assume that whole grains were used. The same is true for “seven-grain” or “cracked wheat.” Even breads and cereals that say “made with whole grains” may contain few of them. Look for products labeled “100 percent whole grain.” McClatchy-Tribune Fridge Clip

Eating Breakfast has its rewards: Does skipping breakfast help you lose weight? Studies show that breakfast skippers actually compensate for those missed calories by eating more throughout the day. People who regularly eat breakfast end to have better luck losing weight and keeping it off. And you have to eat the right foods: If you grab only a doughnut, you may be ravenous before lunch because of a rapid rise and fall in blood sugar. Make sure your morning meal contains fiber and protein. McClatchy-Tribune Fridge clip

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Note from Lucy: TF’s stent removal was a “piece of cake”. They sent him in around noon and, before I could read an entire article in my magazine, they were calling my name to come back and see him in recovery. It didn’t take the doctor 10 minutes to put him under and remove the stent. Everything went very well. He slept for about an hour and 15 minutes and then woke up wanting to go home. He took it easy for the rest of the day and was in great shape to visit his parents over the weekend. I am soooo thankful that everything went well. I am keeping my fingers crossed but he shouldn’t have to see any more doctors for a while……YEA!!!!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Emergency Food Supply

With hurricane season starting its peak period, I have been displaying, for our church group, different segments of Hurricane preparedness. Last Sunday I displayed what you can eat when the power is out. You have items right in your pantry that will work just fine to eat in an emergency. I put copies of this flyer on the display table and people were taking them right and left. My idea is to have a box or container that you can put these items in. Have it in a place that you can take with you if you evacuate, or know where it is if the power is out while sheltering in place.

There are many kinds of disasters that would make going to the store for groceries difficult or impossible – hurricanes, flooding, ice, snow, riots, etc. Having at least a 2-week supply of non-perishables per person is wise preparation. This food should fall into at least 1 of 3 categories – easy to cook, heat only, and no-cook. The following are suggested options:

MILK - Nonfat dry milk, shelf stable boxes of liquid milk, canned milk

BREADS - Crackers, biscuit mix, corn-muffin mix, complete pancake mix

CEREALS AND GRAINS - Instant, quick-cooking and/or ready-to-eat; bulgur

JUICES - Canned or bottled fruit and vegetable juices or enriched fruit-flavored mix

SOUPS - Canned ready-to-serve, condensed or instant

MEATS - Canned ham, corned beef, luncheon meat, Vienna sausage, hash, meat with gravy, stew, poultry, meat sauces, dried beef, summer sausage, salami, meat spread

FISH AND SEAFOOD - Canned tuna, salmon, sardines, oysters, shrimp, clams

BEANS - Canned cooked chickpeas, black-eye peas, kidney beans, pinto beans, black beans; pork and beans; baked beans; chili; three bean salad

VEGETABLES - Canned favorites, including tomatoes, corn and potatoes, pickled beets, mixed vegetables; instant mashed potatoes

FRUITS - Canned and/or dried favorites

CHEESE - Shelf-stable grated cheese and process cheese spread

PASTA AND RICE - Canned or mix combinations, quick-cooking rice, pasta, noodles

STAPLES AND CONDIMENTS - Instant cocoa, instant breakfast drinks, salad dressing, shortening, oil, pickles, olives, mustard, catsup, wine vinegar, syrup, lemon juice, instant or ready-to-eat puddings, herbs and spices, sugar, salt, pepper, peanut butter, jam, jelly, honey

SNACKS AND TREATS - Nuts, cookies, candies, beverages
Based on minimum nutritional guidelines a 2-week supply of food for 1 person could be: 37 ounces (2-1/3 lbs.) powdered milk, 25 (15 ounce) cans fruit and vegetables, 11 ounces (3.5 cups) quick oats, 3 jiffy muffin mixes, 1 loaf bread, 2 lbs. rice, 18 ounce jar peanut butter, 3 cans (6 ounce) tuna, 3 cans (5 ounce) chicken, 1 can (15 ounce) kidney beans.

FEMA and the American Red Cross also offer the publication "Food and Water in an Emergency."
Materials from:

The idea of the display was to get people to think about what they already have and supplement it with other listed items. Those of you who have small children, will need to have baby food on hand. This might include, powdered formula, jars of baby food, boxed infant cereal and etc. Don’t forget paper plates, utensils and plastic cups. You will also need to store bottle water to use to cook some of these items. Purchase a single burner butane stove to use for cooking and get a few canisters of butane to cook with. Cooking with butane is safer than cooking with propane. Always open a window and vent the fumes. Never use charcoal inside the house, it is very dangerous. I found the odd items like oysters and clams at the 99 cent store. It is amazing what you will find if you only look.

Note from Lucy: It's been really busy around here lately. Bonnie is off at space camp and enjoying every minute of it. TF is back to work full time now and tomorrow he has his last procedure done. The doctors will take the stent out of his bile duct. Supposedly this will be the last we see of the doctors. Saturday TF is going to fly to Florida to visit his mom and dad. I was able to find some cheap, last minute air fare that made it all worth while. I hope that his procedure on Friday doesn't set him back any or he will be wasting that non refundable air fare. The doctors assured him that he will be fine. We'll see! My grandson started school last Wednesday and his 2 year old sister is missing him terriably. Jennifer says that she cries and calls out his name. I knew it would be a problem because those two are like peas in a pod. I hope it works itself out soon. Bonnie will get home from space camp on Friday night and will start back to school on Monday, taking 17 hours.... Jennifer will also be taking a class at the community college at night. Busy, busy, busy......

Have a great weekend everyone...............

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Banana Split Cake

Banana Split Cake
Recipe Rating: Prep Time: 15 minTotal Time: 5 hr 15 minMakes: 24 servings, one piece each

1-1/2 cups HONEY MAID Graham Cracker Crumbs
1 cup sugar, divided
1/3 cup butter, melted
2 pkg. (8 oz. each) PHILADELPHIA Cream Cheese, softened
1 can (20 oz.) crushed pineapple, drained
6 medium bananas, divided
2 cups cold milk
2 pkg. (4-serving size each) JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding & Pie Filling
2 cups thawed COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, divided
1 cup PLANTERS Chopped Pecans

MIX crumbs, 1/4 cup of the sugar and the butter; press firmly onto bottom of 13x9-inch pan. Freeze 10 min.

BEAT cream cheese and remaining 3/4 cup sugar with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended. Spread carefully over crust; top with pineapple. Slice 4 of the bananas; arrange over pineapple.

POUR milk into medium bowl. Add dry pudding mixes. Beat with wire whisk 2 min. or until well blended. Gently stir in 1 cup of the whipped topping; spread over banana layer in pan. Top with remaining 1 cup whipped topping; sprinkle with pecans. Refrigerate 5 hours. Slice remaining 2 bananas just before serving; arrange over dessert. Store any leftover dessert in refrigerator.

Size-Wise This banana split-inspired dessert makes a great treat to share with friends and family.Substitute Prepare as directed, using PHILADELPHIA Neufchatel Cheese, 1/3 Less Fat than Cream Cheese; JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Fat Free Sugar Free Instant Reduced Calorie Pudding & Pie Filling; and COOL WHIP LITE Whipped Topping.

Nutrition (per serving)Calories 270 Total fat 15g Saturated fat 7g Cholesterol 30mg Sodium 260mg Carbohydrate 34g Dietary fiber 2g Sugars 25g Protein 3g Vitamin A 8%DV Vitamin C 15%DV Calcium 4%DV Iron 2%DV

I just couldn't resist posting this yummy recipe.

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Staying on top…..

My husband has been home from the hospital for almost two weeks now and he is improving. Two days ago they took out his drain and it set him back again because of the pain and his system is trying to protest. I went to the health food store and bought some vitamins, that a friend of mine suggested, for good digestive health and tissue repair. They still have to take out the stint that was inserted to help with the bile duct problem. It has been such a struggle for TF and I will be glad when we are past all of this. I suppose that there are times when life tosses you a curve and you just have to deal with it the best you can. We are grateful for all the prayers you have said for us and appreciate it completely. Please keep us in your prayers.

Last Saturday night I went to Home Depot and bought a new freezer and dishwasher. Our freezer is on its last leg and the dishwasher broke four months ago. Home Depot offered a special that would allow us to pay it off in twelve months with no payment and no interest. With TF not working at the moment, we needed a deal like that. We should have no problem paying it off in that period of time. They will be delivering both items today between 11:00am and 3:00pm. I will need to empty the freezer some time before that and hope that things don’t thaw out too quickly. Yeks!

I was up really early this morning and decided to read the news on the Internet. I came across a story about a couple that had five babies on July 31st. The babies were delivered at 34 weeks and were all a good birth weight and healthy. The total weight of the babies was just over 21 lbs… The mother is only 5’2” so you can only imagine how large she looked. Oh man, I can’t imagine my skin stretching that much…… The family has a blog, so I decided to go read it. The father posted a video, on You Tube, of the delivery. It brought tears to my eyes to see the beautiful babies. Go take a look here. I wish many blessings to this family.

Hope you all are having a great week……..