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Saturday, June 8, 2019

Prevent Bed Bugs While Camping

For many the fun of summer time includes camping. Getting out into the great nature, taking a rest from the other day, having a bit of fun with family are all part of the reason we leave home to sleep in sleeping bags, tents or cabins. However, there are those pests that none of us like that are out there as well. Mosquito bites, poison ivy, and many other obstacles that we try to avoid. But, there is one more thing you can add to the list of things to avoid and these are bed bugs.

Known as hitch hikers these bed bugs can attach without ever being noticed. Once they have found a free ride they then strive to get to their next stop. Victims are often unaware that bedbugs are even near. Preventing bedbugs may begin before you ever head out to camp.

  • ask camp supervisors if they have ever had to deal with a bedbug issue 
  • inspect the child's dorm , cabin or room where they will be staying. Look for bed bugs in the mattress, in the cracks and crevices and behind the headboard. Report any issues you may find

  • Send a plastic trashbag with your child to store their suitcase in.l This will help to keep bed bugs out of the luggage during camp
  • Once home do not bring all directly inside. Leave the garage outside in the garage or on the sidewalk for a bit This will allow you time to inspect
  • Wash all clothing that went to camp even if it may still be "clean" The hottest temp should be used Make sure it is good and dry before putting it all away. 
  • Prior to storing the suitcase vacuum it out making sure to hit all crevices where bed bugs may hide. 
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Grilled Dessert Pizza

2 ounces white chocolate, chopped
1 pound pizza dough, thawed if frozen
1 cup chocolate chips
1 cup sliced strawberries
1 cup raspberries
1 cup drained canned mandarin orange segments
1/3 cup sliced almonds, toasted, optional

1. Preheat grill to medium. Lightly mist a rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray and dust with flour. Place white chocolate in a bowl and set over a small pan of simmering water (do not let bottom of bowl touch water). Cook, stirring often, until white chocolate has melted.

2. Press and stretch dough to form a 14- to 15-inch round. Place dough on prepared sheet, place on grill, cover and cook for about 5 minutes, until crust is puffed and golden. Using tongs, flip dough over and cook for about 3 minutes longer.

3. Sprinkle dough evenly with chocolate chips, leaving a 1/2-inch border. Cover grill and cook 2 minutes, until chocolate chips have melted. Using an offset spatula or butter knife, spread chocolate evenly over dough. Using tongs or spatula, transfer pizza to a large cutting board.

4. Scatter berries and orange segments over pizza. Sprinkle with almonds, if desired. Dip a fork into bowl with melted white chocolate and drizzle over pizza.

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Alzheimer's Awareness

Alzheimer's and other types of dementia's have become a health concern like no other around the world. There are at least 44 million people around the world that are living with these conditions. Dementia may occur to anyone in every type of population. As long as you have a brain you may suffer dementia. Thus, we should all join the cause and get involved in National Alzheimer's Awareness Month.

Dementia is an individual disorder affect every person differently each in their own unique way. There are no two people who will have symptoms that develop exactly the same. Dementia often affects an individuals personality, general health and social situations. The most common sign of both Alzheimer's disease and dementia is memory loss. Eventually these issues will lead to a withdrawal from daily life.

If you believe that you or someone you know is suffering with these issues you should contact your local doctor.

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Friday, June 7, 2019


Herbs add an extra level of taste in our diet. Herbs have zero calories, fat or sodium. Heat will destroy their nutrition values and crushing herbs is not good either. Spearmint is a herb that can add flavor to a dish, dessert or in a drink.

 Try adding it to a glass of water in order to help you gain the recommended level of water in the day as well. Simply Mix:

  • 8 Oz. Water
  • 1 Sprig Spearmint - snapped
  • 1 Slice Cucumber

Spearmint can be used to relieve nausea and ease stomach digestion. Cold symptoms can find some relief with spearmint as well.

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Firework Safety

Summer time is here and one of the items most likely on the bucket list has something to do with fireworks. Yes, the big day for fireworks is still nearly a month away but it is approaching swiftly as well. The post I share here will hopefully help bring the number of reported injuries that involved fireworks down. Perhaps one of the best tips is to ensure that those that are lighting the pyrotechnics are over the age of 18.

Firework injuries were primarily to hands, fingers and eyes. Over half of the injuries were caused by rockets and sparklers malfunctioning or being mishandled. While sparklers are often loved by children and adults alike children should never be allowed to do them alone. Sparklers can burn at 1,800 degrees strong enough to melt glass. Therefore, a safer substitute for young children would be glow sticks.

One of the most important safety tips for those setting off fireworks is that they may backfire or shoot off in a wrong direction. This is why it is never a good idea to throw or point a firework at someone. I know , I know you meant for it to be a joke but it could go dangerously wrong. Likewise, always have a fire extinguisher or water nearby if anything should happen to go wrong.

Other safety tips to keep in mind include:

  • never try to relight a firecracker
  • do not pick up pieces that appear to be burnt out
  • protect our pets from the loud noises from frightening them
  • Be well aware of all state and local laws concerning fireworks.
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Mens Health BPH

One common health issue that men face as they age is known as benign prostatic hyperplasia or BPH. For the most part the term refers to an enlarged prostate gland. The job of the prostate gland is to produce semen. While an enlarged prostate is not cancerous it is the most common prostate health issue that men over the age of 50 face.

BPH affects nearly half of all men between the ages of 50 and 60 and 90% of all men by the age of 80. Symptoms of frequent urination, inability to completely empty the bladder, a low or weak urine stream and struggle to start urination are all included under the enlarged prostate arena. Many times aging and hormonal changes help bring the condition of BPH into view. However, at times the condition seems rather irritating as it includes an uncontrollable urge to urinate as well as the difficulty to start urination.

Risk Factors of BPH include:

  • the risk of BPH increases over the age of 45
  • an immediate blood relative being diagnosed with BPH 
  • health conditions such as obesity
treatment for BPH include medications, treatment and waiting and watching. 

Prostate enlargement early stages may make it hard to urinate as the bladder muscles must work harder to do its job because of a narrowing urethra. As time goes on the bladder muscles will thicken which may lead to over sensitivity resulting in urgent and frequent need to urinate. However, the bladder muscles often tire which leaves the process of urination incomplete.

Take note that while there is no link between prostate cancer and BPH an individual may have both.

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Men's Health Awareness

June is men's health awareness month. It was began as part of a congressional health educational program. Throughout the month celebrations around the country will take place. These celebrations will include screenings, health fairs, media appearances and even more ways to get the message out concerning men's health. Perhaps the best part is that this awareness opportunity is supported by the White House

Men's health month was created to help heighten the awareness of preventable health problems and encourage early detection and treatment of diseases that
may affect all males. During the month health care providers, public policy makers, the media and individuals interested in men's health will have the opportunity to get their message across to all those that will listen. Many times men fall short of taking care of their own health through the men's health initiative the hopes is that more men and boys will seek regular medical advice when it comes to their health.

Are You Aware:::

  • men die at higher rates than women 
  • men are victims of 92% of all workplace deaths
  • the male fetus is at greater risk of miscarriage and stillbirth --- in addition about 25% more newborn males will die over females.
  • men suffer hearing loss 2x the rate of women
  • men are thought to have weaker immune systems than women
It seems the cards may be stacked against the male sex making men's health awareness month even more important. 

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Thursday, June 6, 2019

Caribbean Okra and Shrimp

1 Tbsp Vinegar
1 Tbsp Soy Sauce
3 tbsp vegetable oil
2 tbsp curry powder
1 onion chopped
3 scallions White and Greens, sliced into 1 inch pieces
3 cloves garlic minced
1 red bell pepper chopped
1 Scotch Bonnet or hot chili pepper chopped or minced
1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
14.5 oz can of diced tomatoes
2 Sprigs Fresh thyme or 1 tsp dry
1 Cup Water
1 lb okra trimmed, cut in 1 inch rings
1 lb large shrimp peeled, deveined
2 tbsp Lime Juice
1/2 tsp or more sea salt

Marinade shrimp in vinegar and soy sauce for 20 minutes.
Heat oil in large pot on medium-high heat. Add curry powder and cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute.
Add onion, green onion, garlic, red pepper, hot pepper, and black pepper. Cook until onions turn transluscent.
Stir in tomatos, thyme, water and okra. Cover the pot and bring to a boil over high, then reduce to a simmer for about 10 minutes. Avoid stirring too much since this will break up the okra.
Stir in the shrimp, lime juice and salt. Cover the pot , reduce to a simmer, and let cook until shrimp is cooked through & has turned pink - about 3 minutes.
Serve with Rice, Festival or Boiled Green Bananas.

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Wednesday, June 5, 2019

Make Memories with Family This Summer

Warm weather is here, and while it is not officially summer, school is out and the days have become a bit lazy. In order to keep the house organized and on track some rules must still be followed. It is also important that you spend time as a family and make lots of memories that will be cherished for years to come. However keeping it all together and making sure time was spent to make those memories may be a bit of a struggle.

It may seem now that the kids are out of school there will be plenty of time to make memories. This may not always be the case as schedules change and time goes on. This is why it is important to set up regularly scheduled family get together dates. Not only will the time spent together be a great deal but looking forward to a great time helps build up the excitement as well.

While school may be out for summer .... the job never ends. One way you can find time to spend with your child is to make just a bit of time each morning to spend together. Are there things in your daily routine that you can include your child in?? Perhaps you will not only make memories but help them to build skills they did not have.

Summertime in the evening also often means activities that would other wise not occur. It is a great idea to take time for not only the family but yourself to enjoy the warm weather activities. It is still important to just set a bit of time aside to talk about the day or whatever the subject may be. In addition, why not provide yourself with some time and activity to do with your family in a quiet sort of way.

Whatever you do with your child and family make sure that it is the right thing. Enjoy your summer and make those memories that will last.

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Old Fashioned Mac N Cheese #Recipe

The potlucks of yesterday and today often include at least one mac n cheese recipe. This old fashioned dish is perfect for taking with you whenever you need to. Family reunions, potluck dinners, church dinners or simply any time you need a delicious dish to share with others. More than likely you will receive praise for this dish simply because it reminds many of the past with that yummy taste. Perhaps the best reason is one you will keep to yourself as the price to make this dish is low and it will feed a crowd without a lot of work

32 oz. elbow macaroni
1 C butter
3/4 C flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 qt. milk
3 lbs. extra sharp cheddar cheese, large grated

*This recipe makes 24-36 servings. Think large pots and containers.

Allow the oven temperature to rise to 350 degrees. Spray a three 9″ x 13″ inch baking pans well with a non stick cooking spray. Cook the macaroni according to the package directions. Drain the macaroni well and rinse under cold water. Pour into a large mixing bowl. Set aside.

Place the butter into a large saucepan over medium heat. Allow the butter to melt completely. Stir the flour and salt into the melted butter until smooth. Stir while slowly adding the milk to the pan. Bring the mixture to a gentle boil.

Stir continuously as you heat the liquid until it’s thick, about 3 minutes. Remove from heat and stir the sauce into the macaroni. Add the cheese, reserving at least 3 cups for topping. Mix well.

Transfer the macaroni mixture to the three prepared pans, spreading it evenly into each pan. Bake 35 minutes. Add the remaining cheese on top and continue cooking for an additional 10 minutes or until golden brown on top.

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Caribean Slow Cooker Beef Stew

sprigs thyme
1/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper
Kosher salt and freshly ground white pepper
2 pounds beef stew meat, cut into 1 1/2-inch cubes
1 pound Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and quartered
3 medium carrots, cut crosswise into thirds
1 1-inch piece ginger, peeled and finely chopped
1 clove garlic, finely chopped
2 teaspoons Worcestershire sauce
1 10-ounce can Mexican-style diced tomatoes with green chiles
4 scallions, sliced (optional)
Hot sauce, for serving (optional)

Strip the leaves from 1 sprig thyme and chop; combine with the flour, allspice, 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon white pepper in a large bowl. Add the beef and toss to coat. Put the potatoes, carrots, the remaining 2 thyme sprigs, the ginger and garlic in a 5-to-6-quart slow cooker. Add the beef, reserving any excess seasoned flour in the bowl. Whisk 1/2 cup water and the Worcestershire sauce into the reserved seasoned flour, then add to the slow cooker. Pour the tomatoes on top. Cover and cook on low 7 hours or on high 4 hours. Add the scallions to the stew and season with salt. Divide among bowls and serve with hot sauce.

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avocado corn salad

corn kernels from 1 large steamed corn on the cobb, 1 cup
5 ounces diced avocado, from 1 medium
1 1/2 cup diced Persian cucumbers, about 3 small
1 cup halved cherry tomatoes
2 tablespoons diced red onion
2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoon fresh lemon juice, from 1 medium lemon
1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
fresh black pepper, to taste

Toss all ingredients together and serve immediately. Enjoy!

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Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Child Vision Awareness

Would you know if your child is having issues with their vision?? Often it is hard to tell because many times our children do not realize that their is a better way to see. This is why infants and children should all have eye exams to be sure that they are seeing out of both eyes correctly. Perhaps there will be no vision problem detected but if there is you will be ahead of the game

Vision problems that are not detected could lead to developmental problems or learning disabilities. Infants that have undiagnosed vision issues may struggle with developing language skills. Learning to read and write are areas where vision issues can lead to problems. However, when the child is properly diagnosed and glasses are prescribed many of the challenges they face can be helped.

Signs to watch for in infants and children :

  • Eyes that are misaligned (look crossed, turn out, or don't focus together)
  • White or grayish white color in the pupil
  • Eyes that flutter quickly from side to side or up and down
  • Eye pain, itchiness, or discomfort reported by your child.
  • Redness in either eye that doesn't go away in a few days
  • Pus or crust in either eye
  • Eyes that are always watery
  • Drooping eyelids
  • Eyes that often appear overly sensitive to light

As our children get older and start school parents should be aware of these signs as well

  • being unable to see objects at a distance.
  • having trouble reading the blackboard.
  • squinting.
  • difficulty reading.
  • sitting too close to the TV.

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Avocado Full of Nutrients

Good eating habits are often established early in life. It often starts with mom, grandma or another care giver offering the child a balanced diet full of nutrients. This month a focus of good nutrition also includes avocados. While they are green and look a bit funny kids often love the fruit. In addition, the fruit offers not only great taste but valuable nutrients that they may otherwise miss.

Good nutrition can start before the child is even born. Researchers have shared that folic acid is important in healthy pregnancies and also help to reduce the risk of serious birth defects in the spine and brain. Folic acid also helps to produce and maintain new cells. This is why it is important for both adults and children to get a fair share of folic acid that can be gathered thru avocados.

Easy ways to serve up avocado that kids and adults both love:

  • Mash avocados and spread on graham crackers, whole-grain bagels or muffins topped with raisins
  • Puree avocado with lemon juice and a pinch of salt as a tasty salad dressing
  • Offer guacamole with baked chips or quesadillas
  • Spread a thin layer of peanut butter, thinly sliced tomatoes, a thick layer of guacamole, and a mound of alfalfa sprouts on whole wheat bread
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Monday, June 3, 2019

So Your Thinking of Adopting A Cat .....

There are many reasons that you may be considering having a new member of the family. Not just any ordinary member but a furry member with a long tail and purrs. Before you go ahead and look for that perfect family member take into consideration that a can has many needs. Exercise, mental stimulation and social interactions are just a few of the needs that must be met. Perhaps you are ready for the new pet requirements and now simply need to find the perfect cat.

Like humans cats have personalities. Some are energetic and others more laid back. It is best if you can locate a cat that has a personality close to your own. One person , the vet will become a friend of both yours and the cat. Perhaps, they can offer you tips even before you bring your new pet home as well as while caring.

While a cat is not an expensive investment there are some cost you need to keep in mind. Many times adopting a cat from a shelter would have been spayed and / or neutered, given its first vaccines and may even have a microchip. Special equipment your new pet will need includes:

  • litter box
  • cat litter 
  • food
  • food and water bowls
  • scratching post
  • safe toys that stimulate as well
  • grooming equipment
  • cat bed
Hopefully the tips I offer will help you better prepare to bring your new cat home

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