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Showing posts from August, 2014

Quote of the Day

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Quote of the Day

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Deep Exfoliating Body Scrub

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BestieNote: Add moisturizer with SPF 30 to your face after the coconut oil. 
After a long summer of sand and sun, you may be in need of a deep exfoliating scrub. Slough off dead skin cells and get luminous skin with this scrub made from coffee grounds, sugar and coconut oil. To get glowing, apply after bathing and leave on your skin for 7 to 10 minutes before rinsing. 
Follow this treatment by moisturizing with coconut oil. It has a hydrating and protective effect on the skin thanks to the antioxidant vitamin E. Apply after a warm (but not hot!) shower for better absorption.
For more beauty tips go to www.doctoroz.com

Plantar Warts Suck!

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(here's what the Plantar Wart looks like without the scab)
My daughter kept complaining about a splinter on the bottom of her foot. Took a look at it and it seemed like a small irritation or small cut on the bottom of her foot, but nothing that Neosporin couldn't cure. Weeks later, a wart showed up and it was right under her foot bone, causing pain when she walked. Our pediatrician sent us to a podiatrist that gave us VerruStat and asked for her to use a pumice stone to lightly scrub her foot every night. Months later, we were still on the same boat, except a little cash poor because of the bi-weekly co-pays to see the doctor, and not much had improved.

I finally realized that the podiatrist was too conservative and we needed a pro-active doctor to care of  this painful nuisance. I called my own podiatrist and he was very proactive (should have gone to him in the first place), he used an in-house formula to burn the wart, it bubbled up and that night we bust the blister open …

Picnic Potato and Chicken Salad Cups

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Total Time: 1 hr 10 min Prep: 20 min Cook: 50 min Yield: 4 servings Level: Easy Total Time: 1 hr 10 min Prep: 20 min Cook: 50 min
Ingredients 4 russet potatoes, peeled and cubed 1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil Salt and freshly ground pepper 1 6 -ounce skinless, boneless chicken breast 3 strips bacon, cooked and crumbled 1/4 cup diced celery 1/4 cup diced onion 1 clove garlic, minced 1/2 cup mayonnaise 2 tablespoons white wine vinegar 2 teaspoons mustard 1 tablespoon paprika 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley 2 fresh sage leaves, chopped 2 heads Bibb lettuce, leaves separated
Directions Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Place the potatoes on a baking sheet, toss with the olive oil, season with salt and pepper and roast until golden and tender, about 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, place the chicken in a saucepan and cover with water; bring to a simmer over medium heat and poach until cooked through, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove and let cool for a bit, then cut the chicken into bite-size pie…

Good Sportsmanship...Always A Good Choice

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We recently had our championship/end-of-the-season team party for my sons’ baseball team. We hadn’t seen the team and coaches since the season ended 9-weeks ago! The boys received their championship t-shirts and finally got to celebrate their big win. When the season started, we were a new team and the underdogs. Our boys battled at each game, and worked hard because they were trying to find their groove as a team. They played their hearts out and could almost taste a win, and every game was close but they couldn't make it happen. Until, they won the first game of the season, the game that changed the entire trajectory of the way most thought the season was going to go!

After our first winning game, the boys were on fire and kept the momentum going at every game, but still had to battle it out on the field. The competition was fierce, all coaches were hungry for the winning run, however, some coaches were willing to give up their dignity during desperate moments in the games. And…

Life Is Full Of Pleasures: Cyndi's Top 3

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Quote of the Day

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Quote of the Day

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Strawberry and Tahini Protein Shake

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BestieNote: Have you finally gotten that exercise routine down but your sore muscles can't recover? I started adding extra protein to my diet and it's made a difference for me. Try this shake and see if it helps you too. -Fabiola

Recipe courtesy of Dr. Oz. Blend up these ingredients for a fast morning meal or a midday snack to beat the 3 p.m. slump.
The flax seeds in this shake give a dose of omega 3s and dates provide natural sweetness with a boost of iron, potassium, calcium and fiber. Ingredients 1 cup milk 2 scoop whey protein powder 1 cup frozen strawberries 4 dates, pitted 2 tbsp ground flax seeds 2 tbsp tahini

Directions
Blend all ingredients until smooth. Makes 2 cups.
For more wellness tips visit www.doctoroz.com

Playing hot potato with emotions…

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While meditating (I use that word loosely) to, Living Contentment day-10 of Oprah & Deepak’s 21-day Meditation Experience. I experienced a breakthrough moment when I came to realization that when I play back the past lists of mistakes, times I’ve misspoken, or was unkind to someone, I play hot potato with every emotion that comes to mind. Instead of letting the emotion or memories pass through, and let them go, I feel the need to quickly do something with it. I feel the need to justify why I handled myself in the way I did, or defend what I said. I’m afraid to feel vulnerable, not only when I make mistakes, but also later on while playing it back in my head! All of the playback moments are situations that happened days, weeks, or months ago, and yet I still spend time playing back and analyzing it all. I always try to rectify situations as they happen or shortly after they happen, and sadly I allow my ego to take over and keep all the junk front and center, and can’t let bygones …

Best Tomato Soup Ever

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Recipe courtesy of Ree Drummond
Total Time: 40 min Prep: 25 min Cook: 15 min Yield: 6 to 8 servings Level: Easy
Ingredients 1 medium white or yellow onion 6 tablespoons (3/4 stick) butter Two 14.5-ounce cans diced tomatoes One 46-ounce bottle or can tomato juice 3 to 6 tablespoons sugar 1 or 2 tablespoons chicken base, or 3 chicken bouillon cubes Freshly ground black pepper 1 cup sherry, optional 1 1/2 cups heavy cream 1/4 cup chopped fresh basil 1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley
Directions To begin, dice the onion. Melt the butter in a large pot or Dutch oven. Throw in the onion and cook until translucent.
Now dump in the diced tomatoes and stir to combine. Add the tomato juice.
Next - and this is important - in order to combat the acidity of the tomatoes add 3 to 6 tablespoons of sugar. Now, you'll want to start on the low side, then taste and add more as needed. Some tomatoes and juice have more of an acidic bite than others. (For what it's worth, and I realize it's not worth much, I use 6 …

Life Is Full Of Pleasures: Cyndi's Top 3

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To my lovely self…on my kids’ first day of school

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I promise not to project; anxiety and overwhelmed emotions of how yet, another school year’s here after a few blinks.
I promise to take deep breaths and acknowledge fear-driven thoughts that are not helpful during this stressful day, so I will check myself, and remember that there’s no need to mentally interact with such useless fear-driven thoughts.
I will make a list of both, my irrational worries and justifiable ones, and then breath through them when they come up.
To my beautiful kids: In those few minutes that I spend in the car with both of you, while driving you to school, I promise to not reflect (out loud), of the years gone by when you lovingly longed for my hugs and kisses, before we said our goodbyes at the gate. And now, against my hearts’ desire…a wave is enough for both of you. I accept it and honor your wishes.
The avalanche of emotions on this first day of school make my head spin, and just thinking about new schedules, lunches, carpooling, and what your interactions will …

Quote of the Day

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Quote of the Day

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Take-to-School Taco Bar

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BestieNote: Another option - skip the salsa and guacamole. Get store bought hard taco shells, roast beef, sour cream, and cheese, for a super easy and quick lunch. Either option is great!
Total Time: 20 min Prep: 20 min Yield: 2 to 4 servings Level: Easy
Ingredients 4 thin slices roast beef (about 3 ounces) 4 (6-inch) soft flour tortillas 1/3 cup shredded Cheddar, Monterey jack or "Mexican blend" cheese 1/4 cup Quickie Guacamole, recipe follows, or store-bought fresh guacamole 1/4 cup Speedy Salsa, recipe follows, or store-bought fresh salsa 2 tablespoons sour cream or plain yogurt, optional Mini bottle hot sauce Multi-compartment lunch box
Speedy Salsa: 2 ripe tomatoes (about 1 pound), halved 1/4 small red onion or white, halved 1 to 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil Kosher salt 1/4 cup chopped fresh cilantro leaves or fresh mint leaves, optional
Quickie Guacamole: 1 ripe Hass avocado, halved and seeded 1 lime, halved 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt 1/4 cup diced tomatoes, mango, or quartered seedless

Summer Days Drifting Away...

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This summer had its great indoor, outdoor, and all around town adventures. But, let me compose myself…it’s time to say goodbye summer and hello school days!! Wahoooo! I never thought I would celebrate the end of summer with so much excitement. Back in May, I was ready to take a break from the school schedules, making lunches, sports, activities, and all the shuttling around town. I was ready to relax a little. And now, hello August! I’m ready to send those two little darlings right back in.
I was gunning for crazy mom of the year when I decided to keep my kids home instead of sending them to summer camp. I apparently lost my mind sooner this year, but when I really lost my mind is debatable, I digress…for the third, yup, third year in a row, I was their personal camp director, driver, and coordinator.
Every week, we wondered around town, went to the beach, whale watching, Universal Studios a few times, rode on a friend’s rented boat for 2 hours in the open ocean, went to see a few summe…

Back To School - Homemade Granola Bars

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BestieNote: Back to school tip - ask your kid(s) to pick the dried fruit for the granola bars. 
Recipe courtesy of Ina Garten 2008, Barefoot Contessa Back to Basics, All Rights Reserved
Total Time: 4 hr 5 min Prep: 25 min Inactive: 3 hr Cook: 40 min Yield: 12 to 16 bars Level: Easy
Ingredients 2 cups old-fashioned oatmeal 1 cup sliced almonds 1 cup shredded coconut, loosely packed 1/2 cup toasted wheat germ 3 tablespoons unsalted butter 2/3 cup honey 1/4 cup light brown sugar, lightly packed 1 1/2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt 1/2 cup chopped pitted dates 1/2 cup chopped dried apricots 1/2 cup dried cranberries
Directions Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter an 8 by 12-inch baking dish and line it with parchment paper.
Toss the oatmeal, almonds, and coconut together on a sheet pan and bake for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned. Transfer the mixture to a large mixing bowl and stir in the wheat germ.
Reduce the oven temperature to 300 degrees F.
Place t…

Life Is Full Of Pleasures: Cyndi's Top 3

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At-Home Beauty Treatments

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Here are two of our favorite at-home beauty treatments:

Egg-white face mask – as seen on Doctor Oz, a viewer shared with the audience an egg-white face mask that she applies everyday for 15 minutes.
1. Separate the yolk from the egg white.  2. Apply egg white all over your face and neck for 15 minutes.  3. Rinse and continue with your daily routine.

Egg whites contain proline, an amino acid that serves as a building block for collagen. Egg whites contain more proline than most foods we eat and can be used to make a restorative face mask.
BestieNote: It sounds crazy but I tried it and I noticed a difference!

Moisturizing and Exfoliating mask:
Before starting your daily routine. 1. Mix coffee grounds and olive oil in a bowl. 2. Mix to create a paste. 3. Gently, and we mean the gently, part! Gently massage into face and wipe away after 30 seconds (the coffee grounds can stain your clothes and sink, so apply it over a paper towel. It’s definitely worth your while and the mess).

The olive oil moistur…

Quote of the Day

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Quote of the Day

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Making Whole of Ourselves

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I feel that when I have made whole for myself a character and I enjoy her, it is the overflow of that joy that reaches or doesn't reach the audience. And when they get that, they let you know, and when they don't get it, they let you know that too. –Cicely Tyson
Most times, when I step into a new role, I go in without knowing much about it. I got married and didn’t know what it was like to have a healthy marriage because my parents got divorced when I was 14. I started a family with the great privilege of having a husband who was supportive and attentive, but I didn’t know how to be a mom.
My mom grew up with parents who had to work day and night and there was not enough time in the day for nurturing the children, so my mom grew up not knowing how to express love towards others. Growing up without a nurturing mother made me afraid of what I was going to be like when I became a mom, so when I became pregnant with my first child, I didn’t know how I was going to feel towards my da…

Dr. Weil's Anti-Inflammatory Diet

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The following article is from www.doctoroz.com
In his new cookbook, True Food, Dr. Weil reveals how specific foods can reduce inflammation in the body, providing your best strategy for protecting against deadly diseases.
Dr. Weil defines “true food” as food that is authentic at its core. His recipes are based on simple ingredients that conform to a healthy nutritional philosophy consistent with the latest scientific evidence regarding foods that heal.
Holistic health trailblazer Dr. Andrew Weil has long supported the belief that chronic inflammation is at the root of many serious illnesses, including heart disease, cancer and Alzheimer’s disease.
Most people are familiar with inflammation that appears on the body’s surface in the form of redness, heat, swelling and pain. Inflammation is how the body heals itself, bringing more immune activity to a site of injury or infection. However, when inflammation persists or gets out of control, it can damage the body.
While stress, lack of exe…

Strawberry Shortcake Sundaes

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Recipe courtesy of Food Network Kitchen
Total Time: 45 min Prep: 10 min Cook: 35 min Yield: 6 servings Level: Easy
Ingredients
For the biscuits: 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1/4 cup sugar 1 1/2 teaspoons baking powder 1/4 teaspoon baking soda 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon 4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces 3/4 cup cold buttermilk
For the strawberries: 2 quarts fresh strawberries, hulled 1/3 cup honey Vanilla ice cream, for serving
Directions Make the biscuits: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F. Whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, nutmeg and cinnamon in a large bowl. Add the butter and rub the mixture together with your fingertips until it looks like coarse meal with pea-size bits of butter. Stir in the buttermilk with a wooden spoon to form a rough dough. Scoop 6 mounds of dough onto a baking sheet, about 1 inch apart. Bake until puffed and golden brown, about 25 minutes. Transfer to a rack and let cool 10 m…

Step Back…and Take A Look At What You’ve Created!

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Step back. Step back and see what you have created. Take it in. Let it move you. –Jennifer Louden
I was reading Jennifer Louden’s blog, where she posted a story about leading a group of women during a retreat in Taos. Jennifer writes, some of the women went to Pat Woodall’s gallery to paint. Pat kept telling everybody to “step back” so they could see what they were painting. Julie said, “He kept telling me to step back, but I didn’t. And then, finally, I did. I stepped way back. Then I started crying. I couldn’t believe what I painted.” She goes on to say, many, many times during the 12 years of leading this retreat, and frankly over the 22 years of creating much of my work, I have almost quit. Either because I felt lost and failing, or because my standards were vague and impossible to reach, or most sadly of all, because I didn’t see the value in my work. I did not step back. That’s how I feel about my home life and work! I work on finding and nurturing my own happiness, love, kindnes…

Life Is Full Of Pleasures: Cyndi's Top 3

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Quote of the Day

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Quote of the Day

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Heart-Healthy Grocery List

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Beet Greens Don't discard beet greens! One cup of cooked beet greens a day can have seriously heart-healthy benefits. These frequently neglected leaves are a great source of insoluble fiber, a nutrient that helps block the absorption of cholesterol. They are also rich in potassium, which can help lower blood pressure.
Canola Oil The plant sterols in canola oil help prevent your body from absorbing bad cholesterol. Additionally, it contains a host of antioxidants that reduce inflammation in the body. You only need to use a tablespoon of canola oil a day to get the benefits.
Dark Chocolate The flavonols in cocoa can lower your blood pressure by relaxing your blood vessels and thinning your blood. By increasing the flexibility of your blood vessels, it lowers your risk of heart disease. To get the benefits of flavonoids, make sure to get dark chocolate that’s at least 70% cocoa. If you’re not sure, get bars that are labeled "pure," "dark" or "unprocessed."
Oli…