Thoughtful Thursday

>> Thursday, December 29, 2011

"Cheers to a new year and another chance for us to get it right."
~Oprah Winfrey

"A new year is unfolding – like a blossom with petals curled tightly concealing the beauty within."

"People are so worried about what they eat between Christmas and the New Year, but they really should be worried about what they eat between the New Year and Christmas."

"New Year's Day is every man's birthday."
~Charles Lamb

"We meet today
To thank Thee for the era done,
And Thee for the opening one."
~John Greenleaf Whittier

"Your success and happiness lies in you. Resolve to keep happy, and your joy and you shall form an invincible host against difficulties."
~Helen Keller

"Celebrate what you want to see more of."
~Tom Peters

The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.
~Oprah Winfrey

"Be always at war with your vices, at peace with your neighbors, and let each new year find you a better man."
~Benjamin Franklin

"We will open the book. Its pages are blank. We are going to put words on them ourselves. The book is called Opportunity and its first chapter is New Year's Day."
~Edith Lovejoy Pierce

"In the New Year, may your right hand always be stretched out in friendship, but never in want."
~Irish Proverb

"Time has no divisions to mark its passage, there is never a thunder-storm or blare of trumpets to announce the beginning of a new month or year. Even when a new century begins it is only we mortals who ring bells and fire off pistols."
~Thomas Mann


Guest Post: Memory Boost From Food: 10 Tips to Improve Your Memory!

>> Monday, December 26, 2011

From the day a child is born to the day a person dies, something that remains constant despite the inevitable changes is the process of learning and understanding. Humans build a knowledge base for themselves which helps them lead their lives, be it the daily chores or the acts that require a more complex understanding. Therefore, ensuring adequate nutrition for maintaining and enhancing one’s memory is essential. All one needs to do is to incorporate certain foodstuffs in their diet regularly to keep the cognitive machinery well oiled. We list the prominent ones’ for you.

1. Apples
The fruit guards you against the incidence of Alzheimer’s disease, an ailment that hits the patient’s memory. This is all thanks to the quercetin antioxidant, known to be effective in healing and warding off diseases. Do not peel the fruit prior to eating, lest you be deprived of anthocyanin in the skin. The anti-neurological disease property of the compound makes it a must have for you.

2. Wholegrain food
Make sure you're eating a diet full of a mix of wholesome foods such as cereal products, wheat bran, wheat germ and whole-wheat rice. Females, who improved their supplement vitamin B9 (also known as folic acid), supplement B12 and supplement B6 consumption, revealed a development in remembering information compared to females who were not taking a supplement.

3. Blueberries
The anthocyanin rich fruit works well not just in contributing towards prevention of memory loss but also in reversing the memory deterioration process that aging brings about. A good diet can play the savior in ensuring that humans retain good cognitive abilities till the very end.

4. Caffeine
Excess of everything is bad; it is moderation in intake that holds the key. The same holds true for coffee. In appropriate amounts, the beverage is a prescription for avoiding memory loss over the long term.

5. Grapes
These are akin to apple in their nutritive properties when it comes to boosting the memory. The compounds quercetin and anthocyanin are the winners here all over again. The darker variants of grapes, red and purple, prove beneficial. Grapes may be replaced by red wine, taken in moderation.

6. Nuts
Here too it is the antioxidants that come to the rescue in the form of Vitamin E. Almonds are an excellent source of Vitamin E, so too are the seeds of sunflower. As little as thirty grams of these seeds meet as much as one third of the daily requirement of body when it comes to the Vitamin E.

7. Onions
Onions in varieties red, yellow and white are all beneficial due to the presence of quercetin, but it is the red onion that scores above the other two varieties being a better source of quercetin as well as anthocyanin.

8. Rosemary
It is particularly significant considering that the compounds in rosemary aid the proper functioning of the central nervous system. These compounds ensure that the amount of acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter responsible for movement of signals in the body, does not see a rapid decline.

9. Tomatoes
There are good proof that lycopene, a highly effective free radical cleansing found in tomatoes, could help control the kind of toxin damage to tissue which takes place in the progression of dementia, particularly Alzheimer's.

10. Spinach
Green leafy vegetables are a rich source of Folic acid. Folic acid is widely known for its anti-Alzheimer’s disease properties.

The ailments that humans suffer from are often a result of inappropriate eating habits. Ensuring that the diet carries all the essential nutrients serves as a precautionary measure that increases the odds of a disease free life. The same holds true for disorders pertaining to the memory.


About the author: Karien is a blogger who is a health freak and very environmentally aware. She strictly follows low cholesterol diet and believes in green living. And her intense desire is to have a showroom of jogging strollers.



>> Friday, December 23, 2011

Warning: picture-heavy post.

Hey there! Remember my tree when we first brought it home?

It's gone from that ^ all bare...

to this...

And no, it hasn't taken me all this time to decorate but it has taken me all this time to post about it. Anybody else do colored lights? I prefer white but YS2 loves the different colors so that's what we do.

Here are a few of my favorite or interesting ornaments:

My mom gets each of us siblings an ornament every year and has been doing this since we were all kids. We have different things we collect and well, if it's not obvious, I collect angels. I have a lot of angel ornaments!

YS2's first ornaments -- now, two years old. (sniff)

Homemade ornaments:

My mom is pretty crafty and made this mitten, along with other similar decorations, for me.
I made this bear with holly (?) leaves and white berries yeeears ago. It's missing a berry now as you can see. Looks like it was made by an 8 year old. Nope, I was an adult. Ha!
Here's another one of my amazing creations (as an adult again). Tried to be extra creative and ended up with something space-y! It was still fun to make.

My great aunt made this for me when I was little. There was another one she made where you'd pinch the cheeks and find a chocolate kiss but I lost that one. Anyway, this has some sentimental value because it is from my auntie but the bear (or is it a mouse?) looks a bit kooky now. lol

Some various ornaments:

A very dear friend of mine got me this real silver dipped pinecone -- she's moving away so this will now be even more special to me.

Sam and I have ornaments we collect each year, usually something made of glass. Although, we have a Swarovski (or two) and other ornaments that have gone AWOL. I'm too lazy to go digging thru the garage trying to find a misplaced box. A sample of our growing collection:

This year's handblown glass ornament -- made locally.

another local original

I think this is a Pottery Barn mass-production. But I still think it's pretty.

Gotta have some fun and whimsy and silliness, too...

There's a lot more fruit and different kinds too -- not really silly but it is fun.

is this a crab-apple?

musketeer cat

Love it when the lights shine on my disco ball tree

I think I got these in a white elephant gift exchange, they seem a little worse for wear now

After the tree was decorated (not fully, since I'm missing that one box still...), off we went to see the Halloween House transformed into the Christmas House. YS2 quickly pointed out (over and over) that the "house is not scary." Poor guy, remembers when it was scary.

I know this is a horrible shot but this is to give you an idea of all the craziness that goes on here. Their top deck wraps around the whole house and as you can see, there's something every foot -- around the whole house!

I could see in one of their windows and yeah, there's Christmas Cheer there too. And, it's nuts!

Well, my friends. I think I've either overwhelmed you enough with all these pics or bored you to tears so I'll end this now.

Hope you and your families and friends have a wonderful holiday season, no matter what you celebrate! Thank you for sharing this time with me and mine.



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