FOCUS ON NATURE’S BEAUTY TO CREATE

 

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My beautiful daughter, Missy Smith Haas  has produced over 100 pastels depicting the soul of the butterfly. This is one of the recent ones she drew for her Dad.



FOCUS ON NATURE’S BEAUTY TO CREATE. 

I am a writer, working on my third novel but it is so easy to be distracted by “noisy noise”. Media, whether it be social media, the news media, or just chit chat. This brought me to this photo which was on Twitter. I found myself calming while gazing at the beauty. I found a source of focus and wanted to share a tip which if chosen can be applied to all of us.

fo·cusˈfōkəs/Submit
noun1.
the center of interest or activity.
“this generation has made the environment a focus of attention”
synonyms: center, focal point, central point, center of attention, hub, pivot, nucleus, heart, core, cornerstone, linchpin, cynosure
“schools are a focus of community life”
an act of concentrating interest or activity on something.
“our focus on the customer’s requirements”
synonyms: emphasis, accent, priority, attention, concentration More
GEOLOGY
the point of origin of an earthquake.MEDICINE
the principal site of an infection or other disease.
LINGUISTICS
the part of a sentence given prominence, usually for emphasis or contrast, e.g., Bob in it was Bob who came, not Bill.
2.
the state or quality of having or producing clear visual definition.”his face is rather out of focus”
synonyms: focal point, point of convergence More
another term for focal point.
the point at which an object must be situated with respect to a lens or mirror for an image of it to be well defined.
a device on a lens that can be adjusted to produce a clear image.
3.
GEOMETRY
one of the fixed points from which the distances to any point of a given curve, such as an ellipse or parabola, are connected by a linear relation.verbverb: focus; 3rd person present: focuses; past tense: focused; past participle: focused; gerund or present participle: focusing; 3rd person present: focusses; past tense: focussed; past participle: focussed; gerund or present participle: focussing
1.
(of a person or their eyes) adapt to the prevailing level of light and become able to see clearly.”try to focus on a stationary object”
cause (one’s eyes) to focus.
“trying to focus his bleary eyes on Corbett”
adjust the focus of (a telescope, camera, or other instrument).
“they were focusing a telescope on a star”
synonyms: bring into focus; More
(of rays or waves) meet at a single point.
(of a lens) make (rays or waves) meet at a single point.
(of light, radio waves, or other energy) become concentrated into a sharp beam of light or energy.
(of a lens) concentrate (light, radio waves, or energy) into a sharp beam.
2.
pay particular attention to.”the study will focus on a number of areas in Wales”

FOCUS is one of the best ingredients for the formula for success. Let me say it this way, “How many times have you sat and pondered (or in essence, focused) on one simple word, photo, poem, etc. until you had an idea of your own. It simply came to you. The possible reason for the result? FOCUS. You were able to eliminate the white noise of this world and tune into your inner self.

 

 

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My husband Greg Miller finds focus in a camera lens and creates beauty from nature. I love to watch him grab his camera and go out the door. I am assured the world of nature will appear in his photos.

TUNE OUT; TUNE IN! Focus on something like this photo or an object in nature itself. Look intently at the object, animal, photo or image until you don’t hear the outside, distracting noise and I feel you will be enlightened to new thoughts or ideas.

(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller with all rights and privileges reserved. Third part material sourced to original location for credit reference.

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MISERY LOVES COMPANY II

 
 MISERY LOVES COMPANY II comes from an original post which received a lot of views. No one wants to be miserable, do they? Sometimes it seems like they do. 
TODAY THE WORD is MISERY. Isn’t this a switcheroo? Miss Positive herself, is writing about misery. I was driving yesterday for several hours and this word came to mind about how people encourage misery in their lives. Why, you may ask, would anyone encourage misery since no one desires to be miserable. I don’t know if any of you watched the movie, Misery, with James Caan, Kathy Bates, that was filmed in 1990. It is a grueling story of how one fan became so obsessed with an author she kept him captive and made him write the next book. She subjected him to so much misery and pain. I see people who subjectively put themselves in misery and pain by the choices they make.
Life throws people enough curves on its own without us making it simpler for life to cheat us out of the blessings that are meant to come our way. How is this possible for one to encourage misery as it seems more natural for us to want happiness, peace and contentment? For some reason, and it may be subconsciously hidden, I think people who have low self esteem crave attention and that opens some doors that should remain shut. Any attention is better than none; and therefore the problem manifests itself. The victim status comes into play. No one likes me; I am not pretty enough; I can’t find a job; my spouse doesn’t treat me right; I am too fat or I am too skinny; and on and on until the person starts believing they are a victim. I am a compassionate person but I say do not encourage “playing victimitis” when you hear someone make the comments seeking attention. True hardships as I was speaking earlier warrant our compassion while at the same time, compassion given to the attention deprived victim is harmful. In place of the compassion, give encouragement in the good things about the person to build the self esteem is my philosophy.

1. Stop letting others determine your priorities.

Look — you know what’s important to you.

(Stop shaking your head — deep down, you know what’s important.)

But what’s important to you is not important to everyone else.

This is fine and normal, except that some people will try to downplay your priorities.

They will try to make you put their priorities in front of your own.

They will try to make you a spectator in your own life.

They will try to make you second-class.

And if you don’t do this — watch out.

They will try and play on your sense of obligation so you’ll keep serving them.

They might even say they neeeeeeeeeed you.

Run.

Or at least walk away from people who have dramatically different priorities than you.

Priorities so radically different that they can’t coexist without one eating the other alive.

Get clear on what matters to you.

Protect where your energy goes and protect your focus.

Take everything inside of you that used to blindly go out into the world trying to please others and reverse it.

But when you do this — be ready for backlash.

Be ready for others to fight you.

Others will feel irritated and threatened when you no longer serve them.

When you set boundaries and say “No”, they will get offended.

Don’t let this backlash stop you.

Stand strong.

Be firm.

Cut off anyone who refuses to let you put your own priorities first.

Stop surrounding yourself with people who refuse to support what’s important to you.

Instead, start spending time with like-minded people who will support you, your priorities, and your goals.

Structure your life so you’re protecting your time and energy in the places that matter most to YOU.

And let others do the same.

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Why add misery to misery by agreeing with a trivial whine? Could we try when someone says something negative, to say something positive? Misery loves company, so help that person out of their “misery status” to a more productive status. “I can’t find a job” may be an opening to “Where have you been looking” or “Have you tried there?” instead of “I know, you won’t be able to find a job in this town”. Happy people have bad days too: they just deal with them better. Don’t invite Misery in for dinner; it may never leave!


 FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:
Proverbs 15:15-16

15 A miserable heart means a miserable life; a cheerful heart fills the day with song. 16 A simple life in the Fear-of-God is better than a rich life with a ton of headaches.

(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller with rights and privileges reserved. Third Party Material Sourced if known for reference credit.

MOTHERHOOD, A BLESSING TO ADMIRE

TODAY THE WORD is MOTHERHOOD.  Today, once a year, we celebrate Mothers Day. Flowers and gifts are sent with beautiful cards full of wonderful words for the fantastic Mothers to cry over, laugh and enjoy. There are lunches and dinners with children coming home or having their Mothers coming to their home. Pampering is at its finest on this special day. For those of us who have lost our Mothers, we reminisce over the wonderful memories of times past. With so much tenderness, do we spend pouring over old photos, running our fingers over those photos as if we are reaching out and touching our loving Mothers, and smile and cry sometimes at the same time.

 

Why do Mothers mean so much to us? I think it goes back to our birth having already formed a bond of warmth when associated with the Mother carrying the baby for nine months. The bond is molded more when the first years of closeness of nurturing, training, feeding, caring for the child. When a child has a boo boo, they usually seek out Mom and want it kissed and made better. As the child grows up, it is usually a need for approval from her to make all of the accomplishments worth the effort. Even in sports, the child looks first to the Dad for pride, but also looks to Mom for the loving seal of approval. What is more “Mother-like” needs? It is the need for comfort when the child loses a game, or doesn’t make the needed hit for the winning run, or doesn’t make the team. God blessed Moms to understand this need and blessed them to open their arms, rub those heads, and say the right words to make it okay. When a pet dies, it is usually Mom who wipes the tears away and assures the child it will be all right. When the son or the daughter gets their heart broken for the first time and sometimes more times than expected, Mom assures them, the one that is special enough will come along and they will be better off.

last day 7Now for the deeper thought……God made Mothers to give us a physical being to comfort us on earth while He comforts our spirits. God gave us Fathers to build our strength and character and God gave us both parents to give us all we would need from physical parents. God will furnish our spiritual needs and our salvation accomplishments. As God sees us move into His light, God glows with pride as our earthly fathers glow; God loves His Children even more than our earthly mothers love us. Today, if you are blessed to have your Mother here on earth, hug her tight, tell her over and over how much you love her. Say a prayer, like I have prayed a prayer of thanks for my precious Mother and how, while she lived; she loved her children with a passion unmatched by any other love. Happy Mothers Day to all Mothers reading this blog! You are special in your children’s’ eyes.

As a tribute to Motherhood, I found an article where Moms describe what it means to be a Mother. You can read the entire article by clicking on the link.

18 Moms Describe What It Means to Be a Mother

What is motherhood? What does it mean to be a mother? These questions are as challenging to answer as they are simple. Yes, to give birth; yes, to adopt children; yes, to have a family. But being a mother is also about much more than that, isn’t it? There’s some large, overwhelming, and beautiful piece at the center of motherhood that is so hard to put words to. It’s a feeling, not an explanation. Maybe that piece is best called love. If so, it is truly a unique love reserved for the mother/child relationship. And when you’ve felt it, you know it.

Since we’re just a few days away from Mother’s Day, we put this question to 18 moms: “What does it mean to be a mother?” The responses we heard were lovely, inspirational, and downright funny! Read them all below.

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“For me, motherhood is seeing the profound value in learning about who your children are, and then encouraging and teaching them to be the best versions of themselves. It is my greatest hope that this acceptance and unconditional love will empower and strengthen my children as well as foster self-confidence and kindness!”

—Courtney Westlake
blogger, Blessed By Brenna
Blog | Instagram | Facebook

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“Motherhood is truly a remarkable gift and a privilege that I hold very close to my heart. To me, being a mother means to be fearless4, to be a positive role model, to be a continuous cheerleader for every milestone my children will experience, to demonstrate the abundance of unconditional love that has no end and to cherish the countless memories that is truly priceless.”

—Eluka Moore
Co-Founder & Author, Kitchen Club Kids
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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“To me, being a mother is the greatest job in the world. Helping my girls through all the things life throws them, while also lifting them up so they can reach for the stars and grab one! That’s what being a mom is all about—always being there—the shoulder to cry on, the cheerleader to never give up, the one that gives the standing ovation, the familiar hand to hold.”

—Bobbie Rhoads
Founder & President, FunBites LLC
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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“Being a mother means being completely and totally overwhelmed (in the best possible way) by love, joy, responsibility, and selflessness. Motherhood means sleepless nights, big belly laughs, caterpillars on the coffee table, finger-painting in the kitchen, stubbed toes, and gapped toothed grins. Motherhood has made life more colorful than I ever knew it could be. Being a mom means I have two little people who walk around with my heart and soul in the palms of their sweet, smudgy hands.”1

—Lauren Casper
Blogger
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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“To me, being a mother means getting to see all the possibility in the world through your children’s eyes, and also wanting to be the kindest and most generous version of yourself, so that your children can look up to you. On a day to day level, being a mother means being tired, sometimes grumpy and never left alone, and then, in one funny, loving or meaningful moment with your kids, realizing that it’s all completely worth it. Times one million.”

—Cara McDonough
Blogger
Blog | Twitter | Instagram

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“Being a mother means being an emotional blankie for your children. They snuggle with you at night, run to you when they’re hurt, and stand behind you in scary situations. There’s nothing more warm and fuzzy.”

—Maia Haag
Co-Founder & President, I See Me! LLC.
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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“For me, being a mother means it is MY responsibility to give my children the tools they need to live a happy and meaningful life. In the case of my daughters, Lily and Melanie, I wanted to empower them with a skill set that would allow them to create independent careers and avoid the glass ceiling…they are on their way with confidence and the sky is the limit.”

—Renee Sandler
Founder & CEO, BLAMtastic®
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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“Being a mother means, knowing when to talk and knowing when to listen…understanding that there is no learning curve. Every day is an adventure (especially when you are raising three boys…Boy oh Boy oh Boy). I would not trade my best day before my kids were born for the worst day after. Motherhood is: a life time adventure, the hardest non-paying 24 hour job you will ever do, and my greatest achievement!”1

—Amy Fazackerley
Founder, Lay-n-Go
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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Being a mom means that “sacrificing my body, my time, my finances, my sleep, and my mental health to raise my kids will be worth it in the end, because life isn’t about me anymore.  I just hope my kids survive my weaknesses, and realize I love them more than anything.”

—Heather Bowcutt
KidsEmail
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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“Parenting is raising a child to be the best they can be. Being a mother is different: it means providing that indescribable feeling of comfort, no matter the age of the child. It’s being that person you call on that makes you feel better and doesn’t even need to say anything.”

—Wendy Hunter, MD
Pediatrician & Founder of BabyScience.info
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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“Being a mother means learning, listening, leading, laughing, loving, and living in the moment . . . all while executing the myriad details of life with aplomb.”

—Rana DiOrio
Founder/CEO of Little Pickle Presss
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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“Motherhood is to sleep with one eye open and always worry. To constantly feel guilty about SOMETHING. To have your heart so filled with love you think it might explode and then have it broken all in the space of less that 60 seconds. To be a guide, coach, cheerleader, policewoman, superhero, ‘kissy monster,’ friend and confidant, even when you have the flu and all you want to do is hide under the covers. To do your best and remember in the hardest of times that the tantrums will pass, teenagers grow out of it, nothing ends a bad parenting moment like a big hug, and most importantly that it’s okay not to be perfect.”

—Tova Leigh
Blogger
Blog | Facebook

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“Being a mother means having my heart permanently stitched to my sleeve, out there and vulnerable and afraid, yet somehow finding such fulfillment and hope that I’m able to appreciate the extraordinary journey. Though it is maddening, terrifying at times, it is also glorious and beautiful; and the most absurd part is that I’d do it all over again in a heartbeat.”
 —Stephanie Jankowski
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“What it means to be a mother is to put your own problems and issues aside and guide your children through life’s adventures with a happy and positive attitude. Most importantly, a mother must engage her children in topics of interest to them (even if they are not interesting to her) and show them how to explore those topics in a meaningful way. Childhood is full of magic, and a mom has to allow that to last as long as she can. Moms have to be creative to keep the magic alive while teaching important skills and values. Of course this is a tall order, and moms are not perfect, so it is equally important to say ‘sorry’ when we need to.”
—Margaret Maciulla
Owner of Grouchy Dog, LLC
Website | Facebook | Twitter
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“There are so many responsibilities that come with being a mother. From the time when they’re babies in your arms to teenagers becoming more independent, you always want to help. With something like the environmental crisis, that’s a burden that our generation might leave for our kids, and I want to do everything I can to help. That’s where my profession ties into my passion as a mother: I aim to use digital games to highlight the beauty of the nature world.”
—Jane Ji
Owner of Springbay Studio, Ltd.
Website | Facebook | Twitter
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“Being a mother means getting your toddler into his car seat as fast as possible (and without any tantrums) when all he wants is to ‘drive’ the car himself. It means leaving the house earlier so you have a few extra minutes to let him sit in the front seat in the driveway and ‘drive’ before going anywhere. Being a mother means trying to make the best of every situation, choosing your battles, and planning ahead!”

—Adi Kochalsky
ZIPIT
ZIPIT Website | Facebook | Twitter
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A mother never says to her child, ‘You owe me.’ This is why1 her love is boundless, endless, seamless, selfless—unconditional. This is why her love multiplies and divides to embrace her own children and then theirs. There is a Mother Theresa in every mother and she should be celebrated (on Mother’s Day and) every day.”

—Roma Khetarpal
Author of The Perfect Parent
Website | Facebook | Twitter

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“Being a mother, with its challenges and rewards, has shaped me into the person I never imagined I could become. Protecting and advocating for our children is something all mothers strive for, and for me this is especially true for my child with autism who needs me as an advocate and a voice. It’s been the best assertiveness training!”

—Lori DeMonia
Author of Leah’s Voice and Love for Logan
Website | Facebook | Twitter

FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:
Isaiah 66:13          

As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you; you shall be comforted in Jerusalem. 

(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material including photos are sourced, if known, to original location for credit reference.

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WHY DEPRIVE; CUT PORTIONS & THRIVE

My Mahi Mahi with Tomato Mango Salsa on HEALTHY BITES
Quick Lunch Idea on HEALTHY BITES

TODAY THE WORDS are WHY DEPRIVE; CUT PORTIONS AND THRIVE. I have been doing a lot of re-thinking my eating program. I hate to use the word program as it depicts some sort of the forbidden word “diet” but it is important we think not worry. Today I would like to share some of my thoughts about WHY DEPRIVE; CUT PORTIONS AND THRIVE. In order to do this, I want to shake up some of the ideas we have been supplied over the past few decades. From all of the great “resolves” most of us have ended up with more weight on our bodies from all of the deprivation.
Yesterday when I covered my decision to use the Tablespoon of the No-No foods during the holidays and shared it with some other friends; I realized from the follow up discussions with the ones who exercised this technique (by the way, nothing to buy or special products) they didn’t gain during the holidays and now are excited about becoming very serious to get in control of their health. In other words; they didn’t feel deprived. Neither did I.  I am not advocating eating the No-Nos every day but when we can feel we had the pleasure of tasting some of the No-Nos but not overindulging; it is a good day.
Let’s take a walk down memory lane and remember how school lunches USED to be created. They were selections from the food groups. We had protein, starch or good carbs as veggies, fruit, bread, and even dessert. Think about how few kids were overweight; yes that is right. It was very unusual for a child to be chubby. We were active and not sitting idle. Hmmm??? Maybe that is a different topic for another day. Here is the focus of what I am thinking…..Portions! We were given a certain amount of each food group and not allowed 4 portions of starches or bread or even dessert. It was proportionately divided to insure we ate from all of the food groups. May I ask a question? Why did we change the way we used to eat when life was grand and all of the fish were jumping?
Commercialism is the culprit. Along came the microwave and the fast food (which I believe is the fast track to our demise). We grabbed on that destructive train with a vengeance and became lazy. This didn’t help us in the activity area either. I can remember going to the garden and picking the foods for our dinner or at least preparing for the freezer for later.
Here is an article I found that help us cut portions and whatever weight management style you choose cutting portions is a way to enhance the results.

The best portion control tips for easy and fast weight loss.

DIANA KELLY

May 13, 2015
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Start with a glass of H2O

Drink 16 ounces (a big glass) of water before you eat, suggests Dawn Jackson Blatner, RD, author of The Flexitarian Diet. Filling your belly with water will naturally make you less likely to overeat, she says. Plus, some symptoms of dehydration may actually be what’s causing your rumbling belly, so sipping some water before you eat may eliminate your “hunger” altogether.

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Wear form-fitting clothes

We’re not suggesting you squeeze into pants that are too tight. However, wearing an outfit with a waistband or perhaps a jacket with buttons can serve as a tool to prompt you to slow down and assess how you feel during your meal, says Young. As your clothing begins to feel a little snugger, it may keep you from going back for seconds.
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Add veggie fillers

Bulking up your meals with veggies is one easy way to cut calories while filling you up fast. Spinach, for example, can be used as a sandwich-topper or can add fiber and nutrients to pasta and stir-fries, says Blatner. Other ideas to eat more veggies: swap in mushrooms for half the ground meat in most recipes, make oatmeal more filling with diced apples, and use a whole-wheat pita in place of bread so you can stuff it with more veggies.
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Dine on dinnerware that helps you lose

The color of your plate may influence how much you eat, according to a 2012 Cornell University study. The researchers discovered that when a plate and the food on it had a low color-contrast (like pasta with Alfredo sauce on a white plate), people at a buffet served themselves 22% more than when there was a higher color-contrast (like pasta with red sauce on a white plate or pasta with Alfredo sauce on a red plate). The study conclusions suggest that if you want to eat less, select plates that have a color-contrast to the food you’re eating for dinner. Or if you want to eat more healthy foods, like a bigger salad, eat greens from a large green plate or bowl!
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Make carbs the topper instead of the base

Rethink the way you use grains and starches. Take a breakfast parfait, for instance: instead of starting with a granola base, fill your cup with yogurt and then sprinkle just a tiny amount of granola on top for the crunch you crave. Making a stir-fry? Load up your plate with veggies and a serving of lean protein, then add a quarter cup of brown rice.
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Set the scene for slower eating

Dim lights and listen to relaxing music to set the tone for a more leisurely meal, suggests Blatner. “Taking your time while eating increases enjoyment and decreases portions,” she says. Remember to chew slowly, put down your fork between bites, and sip water to make your meal last longer.
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Work for your food

Here’s another way to slow down your eating: munch on foods that require shelling, peeling, or individual unwrapping, suggests Blatner. Oranges, edamame, and pistachios in their shells are healthy options.
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Don’t eat from the bag or box

When you sit down with a bag of chips, do you really know how many you’re eating? Researchers from Cornell University sought to answer this question in a study and found that people ate 50% more chips when they were given no visual cues as to how large a portion should be. So if you buy a bag of pretzels or tin of nuts that contains 10 servings, divide the contents of the container into 10 smaller baggies ahead of time.
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Slurp your appetizer

Before you dive into your entrée, have some soup. Though it may seem counterintuitive to add more to your meal, research shows that starting a meal with soup may help you reduce your overall calorie intake. In a 2007 study, people who ate soup before their lunch entrée reduced their total calorie intake by 20%. Your best bet: a broth-based soup, preferably with veggies to help you feel full from the natural fiber, says Young. Here are a few healthy soup recipes to get you started.
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Take a lap before serving yourself

In a Cornell University study published in PLoS One, researchers observed people at two separate breakfast buffet lines that featured the same seven items: cheesy eggs, potatoes, bacon, cinnamon rolls, low-fat granola, low-fat yogurt, and fruit. One line presented the foods from healthiest to least-healthy, while the other line had the order reversed. Regardless of which line they passed through, more than 75% of diners put the first food they saw on their plates; the first three foods they encountered in the buffet made up two-thirds of all the foods they added to their plate. So take a stroll around the buffet or dinner table before you serve yourself, suggests Young.
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Drink from a tall glass

It’s okay to have a cocktail with your meal if that’s what you really want, but keep it to one glass and enjoy it slowly, suggests Young. To trick yourself into believing you’re having more, pour your drink into a tall, thin glass. A 2005 study published in the journal BMJ revealed that practiced bartenders who poured what they thought was a shot of alcohol (1.5 ounces) into a short, wide glass poured 20% more than when the glass was tall and thin. Add extra ice to your drink to make it look like even more!
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Limit mealtime distractions

Turn off the TV and put your smartphone away while you eat. A recent review of studies found that people who watched television during meals tended to consume more than those who ate without any distractions. And for you office dwellers? Consider taking your lunch break away from your desk—in an American Journal of Clinical Nutrition study, people who played computer solitaire while having lunch felt less full at the end, and went on to eat more food later in the day than those who didn’t play the game.
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Use smaller serveware and dishes

Turns out that even food experts aren’t so savvy about eyeballing portion sizes. In a Cornell University study, 85 nutrition experts gathered for an ice cream social to celebrate the success of a colleague. They were randomly given either a small or large bowl, or a small serving scoop or large serving scoop. Then, the nutritionists were asked to complete a brief survey while the study researchers secretly weighed their bowls. Those given the larger bowls served themselves 31% more without realizing it, while those who used the larger scoop unknowingly served themselves 14.5% more. Moral of the story? Dish up your own food with a small utensil onto a small bowl or plate, and chances are you’ll eat less.
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End your meal with a new kind of sweet treat

Many people have trained themselves to expect a sweet treat at the end of a meal, says Blatner. Swap in a new, healthier ritual after meals to signal that you’re done eating. She recommends brewing a flavorful decaf tea like peppermint, cinnamon, chocolate, or one of your favorite fruity varieties for low-or-no-calorie sweet-tooth satisfier.

14 Portion Control Tips

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Here is my thought on what has caused more obesity than having a cookie once in a while, a piece of bread with butter on it occasionally, or even a serving of lasagne or spaghetti……it is the ability to grab any quantity of fried chicken, pizza, burgers and fries super sized, or buffets where the philosophy is to eat as much as your body can hold because you are paying one price for whatever. You may not agree with my thinking but at least think about what you are eating and remember portions. You can or cannot count calories (that kind of stuff messes with my ADD) but a portion is the way to go in my mind. One piece of meat, one or two vegetables, one moderate size carb, one toasted or dark bread, and occasionally something sweet but try to stay away from gooey or a portion of fruit will go a long way in your system working right. At least consider changing from the idea of I can’t have to How much of any of the food group should I have.
May you find your way on the eating trail of life. I am not a health expert but I have found that the so called diets do not work for me and I don’t want to deprive; I want to cut portions and thrive.
HEALTHY BITES has been created to offer healthy recipes and you can click on this page for them. Also if you follow me on Pinterest, or even if you don’t, you can find great healthy recipes on many boards. Until we read or eat again…….Arline Miller, author and fellow eater!
(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller with rights and permissions reserved. Third party material is sourced if known to original location for credit references.

LIFE’S STRAND OF PEARLS II

I have chosen to repost this lovely blog message from 2016. With Mother’s Day approaching, many of you will relate to the pearl necklaces. Recently Former First Lady Barbara Bush passed away and so many references to her “pearl” identity which was always a symbol for her. Please enjoy this one and I love my pearls both on my neck and in my heart.


TODAY THE WORDS are LIFE’S STRAND OF PEARLS.  In anticipation of reaching an important goal for the blog of 150,000 page views, I went back to my log of posts and found this one. I thought we might enjoy some pearly whites this morning.


For most of you who know me, you already know how I love pearls. I have worn pearls and they have always given me such a warm feeling when I have them on. I will notice in photos of anyone that has a pearl necklace, earrings or brooch (for any youngsters that is a pin). What I would like to share is the thought behind pearls. A dear friend of mine has told me many times, “there’s your pearl” when something good happened. He would also say when he was giving me great advice, “here is a little pearl”. One day, when I was about to put one of my strands, I took a long look at it, realizing the importance of message it was portraying.
I thought I would enhance this personal message with the following link and excerpt about the history of Pearl Jewelry.

 

Pearls are unique among gemstones because they don’t arise from the depths of the earth but from the sea. They require no special cutting or polishing to maximize their lustrous beauty, which has been treasured since ancient times and ensures that pearl jewelry is always in style.

THE HISTORY OF PEARL JEWELRY

Pearls were used in jewelry at least as far back as ancient Greece, and until the 20th century pearls were one of the most valued gems, if not the most valuable, in many cultures. The rules of the Byzantine empire dictated that only the emperor was allowed to wear pearls, and other societies had rules about who could and could not wear these little treasures. The sixteenth century in England was known as the Pearl Age, reflecting the prestige carried by pearls at that time.

Pearls became more accessible in the early 1900s once people in Asia discovered how to create cultured pearls. By carefully placing a small nucleus into a living oyster, a pearl forms around the nucleus, allowing pearls to be created in oyster farms.

THE SYMBOLISM OF PEARLS

In many ancient societies pearls symbolized the moon and were imbued with magical properties. Ancient Chinese civilizations believed that wearing pearls protected a person from fire and dragons, and other cultures have associated them with chastity and modesty. In Victorian England small seed pearls were often used in mourning jewelry to symbolize tears.

PEARLS AS GIFTS

 

Pearls have long been exchanged as gifts. When 13th century explorer Marco Polo visited Mongolian emperor Kublai Khan he reportedly presented him with the stunning Arco Valley Pearl, which weighs in at 575 carats and is more than three inches long (the pearl was auctioned off in Abu Dhabi in 2007 and its whereabouts are unknown). A famously beautiful pearl called La Peregrina was given by Prince Phillip II of Spain to his bride Mary during the 16th century. La Peregrina, a white, pear-shaped saltwater pearl, had a series of royal owners until the 1960s, when actor Richard Burton gave it to his jewelry-obsessed wife Elizabeth Taylor. Taylor had a necklace of pearls and rubies designed to showcase La Peregina.

Although famous for singing that “diamonds are a girl’s best friend,” one of Marilyn Monroe’s most treasured pieces of jewelry was a simple sixteen-inch string of pearls given to her by Joe DiMaggio during their honeymoon in Japan. Pearls were always a favorite accessory of 20th century style icon Grace Kelly, both during her screen star days and once she became Princess Grace of Monaco. Her husband Prince Rainier gave her a luxurious pearl-and-diamond jewelry set that she wore frequently.

Let me share this with you. Pearls are grown in a hard shell (and really few of us look at an oyster shell as pretty like we look at other shells). It may take up to 20 or more years to bring a pearl to full size so a lot of time goes into the process. Pearls in their natural state aren’t the finished pearl we see in the strands as they are polished and by this process, it brings out their true luster. If you take the time and look closely, pearls are still unique and usually no two are exactly the same. As beautiful as pearls are, they can be beautiful with others or beautiful on their own. Pearls are usually a gift given by someone who loves them dearly.
Now for the deeper thought……have you thought about the clasp? As beautiful as the strand of pearls are, without the clasp to hold it all together, the pearls would fall to the ground It is the most important part of the necklace and here is how I see pearls. Pearls are our different stages of our life. When we are young, we are the pearls being nurtured in our shell surrounded by a hard protective cover (our parents). After a while, we are plucked into our adult lives. We can be successful on our own or part of a collection (company). We have strength and luster; but are fragile if not connected by a strong clasp (God). We can add other pearls (spouses, children, friends, and grandchildren) to our strand and people like to enjoy our pearls. God will hold our lives together and the clasp needs to be checked to make sure it closed securely (our faith). Next time you see a strand of pearls, take a deep look at it. God gives us the freedom to build a beautiful strand of pearls of life with all of its beauty and luster but He wants us to keep our pearls safe, protected and loved.

 

 FEATURED BIBLE VERSE:

Matthew 13:45 – Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls

(c) copyright 2012-2018 Arline Lott Miller. The material here copyrighted, use only by permission. Third party material is sourced to original location if known for credit reference.

GOING ZANY WITH ZUCCHINI

Here is our freshly made with garden ingredients for Easy Zucchini Noodle Salad

GOING ZANY WITH ZUCCHINI. I have been seeing everyone going zany with zoodles & sqoodles and my curiosity was killing me. Since my husband and I keep trying to change our eating lifestyles with some success and then some backsliding, I felt if I could come up with some great tasting, healthy alternatives to our regular salads; we could maintain our lifestyle more comprehensively.
So you will see my attempt at EASY ZUCCHINI NOODLE SALAD as shown in the video from ST. ELIZABETH HEALTHCARE (can be viewed on St. Elizabeth Healthcare Facebook page)

Here is how I made it with our new Veggetti Pro from Bed Bath and Beyond as shown in the picture from their website.

First, from the supermarket: 2 fresh Zucchini; Fresh Basil; red cabbage; fresh broccoli; grape tomatoes; 2 fresh ears corn (one can if fresh is not available).
Using the Vegetti Pro, make noodles out of 2 zucchini. We used it for the red cabbage too. These are our pictures and it was easy to make. Healthy and yummy.

 

 

 

 

 

RECIPE FOR EASY ZUCCHINI NOODLE SALAD:
2 Zucchini (made into noodles)
25 to 30 Grape Tomatoes (halved)
3/4 cup red cabbage
1 cup broccoli florets chopped
2 ears of fresh corn (1 can if fresh is not available) Tip: Use bundt pan to cut corn off cob
1/4 cup fresh chopped basil
Assemble all of these ingredients in bowl. You can make dressing in bottom of bowl by:
2 T. olive oil (use high quality)
3 T. white vinegar
1 T. honey (I used raw, unfiltered honey)
Juice from 1 Lime
1t. pepper (I used freshly ground)
Pinch of salt
Whisk together and then add all of the assembled ingredients.
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grilled-zucchiniUse Your Power Air Fryer Oven to “grill” zucchini strips with butter and seasonings. Check for proper settings. Even chopped fresh herbs added make a delish dish!
My page Healthy Bites will give you even more healthy recipes including scrumptious zucchini recipes.
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You can click on the Title Link for direct access to tablefortwoblog.com. Visit them for more recipes.

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Easy Oven-Baked Zucchini Chips

Thin, crispy, and irresistible! These zucchini chips are a great way to use up all that zucchini in your garden!
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 2 hours
Total Time 2 hours 10 minutes
Servings 50 chips

Ingredients

  • 1 large zucchini
  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • Kosher salt

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 225 degrees Fahrenheit. Line two large baking sheets (I used two 17″ baking sheets) with silicon baking mats or parchment paper.
  2. Slice your zucchini on a mandolin. Mine had 1, 2, or 3 for thickness and I used 2.
  3. After you slice your zucchini, place the slices on a sheet of paper towels and take another paper towel and sandwich the zucchini slices and press on them. This helps draw out the liquid so it’ll cook a bit faster.
  4. Line up the zucchini slices on the prepared baking sheet tightly next to each other in a straight line, making sure not to overlap them.
  5. In a small bowl, pour your olive oil in and take a pastry brush to brush the olive oil on each zucchini slice.
  6. Sprinkle salt throughout the baking sheet. Do NOT over-season, in fact, it’s better to use less salt initially because the slices will shrink; so if you over-season, it’ll be way too salty! You can always add more later.
  7. Bake for 2+ hours until they start to brown and aren’t soggy and are crisp.
  8. Let cool before removing and serving.
  9. Keep in an airtight container for no more than 3 days.

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 Note from Arline Miller, blogger for Sipping Cups of Inspiration: It is easy for me to fall off the healthy eating wagon but I wipe myself off from the crumbs and climb back on. No one says it is easy, but being unhealthy is not easy either. We have planted a small container garden and it contains both crooked neck squash and yes, zucchini squash. Let’s get zany with zucchini!
Have fun with healthy recipes. The fresh smells and colorful display makes eating good foods more adventurous. Until we cook again…..LIVE LIFE; LOVE LIFE; LIVE AND LOVE LIFE TO THE FULLEST!………Arline Miller
(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. All third party material including photos are referenced if original source is known for credit and access to location.

MORE POWER TO THE AIR FRYER OVEN

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MORE POWER TO THE AIR FRYER OVEN is the subject on the blog today for all of you who have been interested in this fantastic way of cooking with very little or no oil but retaining the good ole taste of fried food. I have fallen in love with our Power Air Fryer Oven. Please refer to the original post for more info. POWER UP WITH POWER AIR FRYER OVEN was posted on March 2, 2018.

I will start with some of the FAQ’s that you may have. These are directly pasted from the Power AirFryer Oven website:

Power AirFryer Oven FAQ’s

1 WHAT IS THE CAPACITY?
The 6-Quart and 6-Quart Elite Power AirFryer Oven is large enough to accommodate a 9″ round pizza or cake, a 9 x 5″ loaf pan, or a 5-lb. chicken.
2 WHAT FEATURES ARE SPECIFIC TO THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN?
Both the 6-Quart and 6-Quart Elite 7-in-1 Power AirFryer Oven models are designed with the same best-selling cooking features as the 5-in-1 Power AirFryer XL. PLUS, we’ve added a pro-grade dehydrator and rotisserie. In the 7-in-1 Power AirFryer Oven, you can air fry, bake, sauté, grill, roast, dehydrate, and rotisserie.
3 WHAT IS THE WATTAGE (POWER)?
6-Quart: 1700 Watts
6-Quart Elite: 1500 Watts
4 WHAT ARE THE DIMENSIONS OF THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN?
6-Quart: 14.96″ x 13.4″ x 14.56″.
6-Quart Elite: 13.189″ x 12.5984″ x 13.8583″.
5 HOW LONG IS THE POWER CORD?
The power cord is approximately 3 feet 8 inches (44″) long for both the 6-Quart and 6-Quart Elite models.
6 CAN I ADJUST COOKING TIME MANUALLY?
Yes! You can manually program the Power AirFryer Oven to your chosen time and temperature. Alternatively, the Power AirFryer Oven has 8 one-touch pre-set functions.
7 DOES THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN INCLUDE ROTISSERIE ACCESSORIES?
Yes! There’s a pro-grade rotisserie built right into both the 6-Quart and 6-Quart Elite Power AirFryer Oven models. You get a Rotating Rotisserie Spit and Oil Drip Tray for perfect, tender results every single time.
8 WHERE CAN I FIND INSTRUCTIONS ON HOW TO INSERT THE ROTISSERIE SHAFT/FORKS?
We’ve put together a how-to video to help you assemble, insert, and remove the Rotisserie Shaft and Forks. Click here to watch.
9 CAN I PUT FROZEN FOODS IN THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN WITHOUT DEFROSTING THEM FIRST?
Yes! You do not have to allow frozen foods to thaw before cooking in the Power AirFryer Oven.
10 CAN I CHECK MY MEALS DURING THE COOKING PROCESS?
The Rotating Mesh Basket can be removed at any time during cooking. If you wish, you may flip food on the Air Flow Racks to help ensure even cooking. The Power AirFryer Oven will resume its previously programmed cooking cycle. Alternatively, you can turn on the light and watch your meals cook through the glass door.
11 IS IT POSSIBLE TO SHUT OFF THE UNIT AT ANY TIME?
Yes! Simply Press the Power Button once. Opening the door pauses the cooking cycle.
12 WHY IS THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN USEFUL?
The 7-in-1 Power AirFryer Oven was designed as an all-in-one multi-use kitchen powerhouse. Not only can you fry food using super-heated air with little to no oil, you can cook tender, delicious rotisserie chicken, kebabs, and more or dehydrate your favorite meats, fruits, and veggies. You get the mouthwatering meals you love in just minutes without added oil or expensive restaurant bills. With very little clean-up time!
13 HOW DO I DEHYDRATE IN THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN?
Both the 6-Quart and 6-Quart Elite Power AirFryer Oven models are designed with a pro-grade, built-in Dehydrator. You can easily dehydrate your favorite fresh meats, fruits and veggies with no added sugar right at home on any or all of the three included Air Flow Racks. See the Owner’s Manual for specific instructions.
14 IS MY OVEN DOOR SUPPOSED TO COME OFF?
Yes! The door is designed to detach for effortless clean-up.
15 HOW DO I CLEAN MY POWER AIRFRYER OVEN?
Be sure the Power AirFryer Oven is unplugged and has cooled completely. Clean the inner wall and heating element with a small amount of nonabrasive soap and a nonmetallic sponge. The heating element is not dishwasher safe. Reminder: Follow the same instructions when washing the door. Do not put the door in the dishwasher or submerge in water.
16 WHERE IS THE VENT LOCATED ON THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN?
The vent is located in the back of the unit. Remember to leave sufficient space between the vent and any adjacent surface that may block air flow such as a wall.
17 WHAT COMES WITH THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN?
Both the 6-Quart and 6-Quart Elite Power AirFryer Oven models include 3 Air Flow Racks, Oil Drip Tray, and access to online recipe video library plus added BONUS FEATURES: Stainless Skewers, XL Rotating Mesh Basket), Rotating Rotisserie Spit, the entire AirFryer Oven Recipe Book Library: America’s #1 Favorite Fried Foods Revealed 2nd Edition, Rotisserie Mastery Cooking Guide, and Dehydration Creations Guide. Plus, you get $100 in grocery coupons to redeem at your local grocery store!
18 CAN I MAKE KEBABS IN THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN?
Yes! Both the 6-Quart and 6-Quart Elite Power AirFryer Oven models are designed with a pro-grade Rotisserie Function that includes 10 Stainless Skewers. Rotisserie an entire chicken to tender, crisp perfection or make juicy, authentic kebabs right in your own kitchen.
19 DO I HAVE TO USE OIL?
It is not necessary to use oil to air fry. The Power AirFryer Oven cooks food with super-heated air instead of oil. You may spray or coat your food with oil as desired for added flavor. Do not pour oil directly into the unit.
20 WHERE CAN I FIND RECIPES FOR THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN?
You can find easy, mouthwatering recipes at our website’s recipe library located here. You can also visit our Facebook page here or our YouTube channel here
21 IS THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN DISHWASHER SAFE?
The Air Flow Racks and Stainless Skewers are dishwasher safe. All other components may be washed with a small amount of nonabrasive soap and a nonmetallic sponge.
22 CAN I MAKE MORE THAN ONE TYPE OF FOOD AT ONCE?
Absolutely! The Power AirFryer Oven is designed with 3 levels of Air Flow Racks.
23 DO I NEED TO PREHEAT THE POWER AIRFRYER OVEN?
You don’t have to wait for the unit to heat up. With the Power AirFryer Oven, there is no lengthy preheating process; the unit heats almost instantly. If cooking from a cold start, we recommend adding three minutes to your cooking time to compensate.
24 WARRANTY REPAIRS? (VIEW WARRANTY)
To return the product for replacement or refund within 60 days, the original purchaser must pack the product securely and send it postage paid with a description of the reason for replacement or refund, proof of purchase, and the order number on the package to the following address: Power AirFryer, 500 Returns Road, Wallingford, CT 06495.
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Here are some recipes you may want to try:
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I have made so many great dishes from using my Power Air Fryer Oven and you can skip over to my page HEALTHY BITES and find some of them. Get in the AIR method of cooking and your imagination will go wild.

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More to come as I cook, grow, and glow with air frying. I will be creating a board on Pinterest for Power Air Fryer Oven recipes designed in healthy WOE. Look for it in the near future.

(C) Copyright 2012-2018 Arline Miller of Sipping Cups of Inspiration with all rights and privileges reserved. Third party material including photos are sourced to original location if known and are not exclusive material of Sipping Cups.