Sugar Shun – No bags, no butter no oil!

Rosemary Lee Seeking Equilibrium is my hero:  She is doing the “shuck the sugar” for a month with me – and gasp! – she threw away Oreo cookies that were next to her bed:
She sent me this:
“This works!!  I had some with some cumin and salt for a southwest popcorn.
For the popcorn lovers!!!  Microwave popcorn, no bags, no butter, no oil!!!!  It’s genius really. Simple, simple genius.
Glass bowl + ceramic plate + popcorn kernels = perfectly popped popcorn in the microwave.  No bag. No butter or oil. Nothing to throw away afterward. And even no un-popped kernels.
  • Take 1/4 cup of dry popcorn kernels and place in the bottom of a microwave-safe glass bowl (pyrex is a great choice).
  • Place a microwave-safe plate on top of the bowl. Plate should be wide enough to go beyond the rim of the bowl.
  • Microwave for 2 minutes 45 seconds. Watch in glory as your popcorn pops perfectly into little puffs of heaven.”
photo

 Corny Facts

  • Americans consume some 16 billion quarts of this whole grain, good-for-you treat. That’s 51 quarts per man, woman, and child.
  • Compared to most snack foods, popcorn is low in calories. Air-popped popcorn has only 31 calories per cup. Oil-popped is only 55 per cup.
  • Popcorn differs from other types of maize/corn in that is has a thicker pericarp/hull. The hull allows pressure from the heated water to build and eventually bursts open. The inside starch becomes gelatinous while being heated; when the hull bursts, the gelatinized starch spills out and cools, giving it its familiar popcorn shape.
  • Most popcorn comes in two basic shapes when it’s popped: snowflake and mushroom. Snowflake is used in movie theaters and ballparks because it looks and pops bigger. Mushroom is used for candy confections because it doesn’t crumble.
  • “Popability” is popcorn lingo that refers to the percentage of kernels that pop.
  • How high popcorn kernels can pop? Up to 3 feet in the air.
  • The world’s largest popcorn ball was created by volunteers in Sac City, Iowa in February, 2009.  It weighed 5,000 lbs., stood over 8 ft. tall, and measured 28.8 ft. in circumference.
  • If you made a trail of popcorn from New York City to Los Angeles, you would need more than 352,028,160 popped kernels!

P.S. Rosemary, there are only a few people (besides Laurie F.)  who would describe popped corn as “little puffs of heaven” and you are one of them! 

“Ode” to Sugar

Refined sugar is my drug of choice.   Lately I’ve been on a binge.   When my energy is flagging sugar is my go-to drug.  It’s also my choice when I’m bored . . .in pain . . . when I’m sad, happy . . . when it’s raining . . . snowing (anywhere in the world) . . . cloudy, clear, night or day . . .  

O’ lovely sugar

sweetest seductress ever

you never grow stale

*

O’  sugar of mine

as pure as the falling snow

cooling my senses

*

O’ sugar my love

with pangs in my head &  heart

you are a goner

I’ve not been feeling very well lately and no longer know which comes first – sugar or my symptoms.  Ultimately it makes no matter for I know that sugar is not good for me.  For the next month I’m going to ATTEMPT to keep refined sugar and it’s “carrier” white flour at least 10 feet from my lips.  (I was going to say mouth but I need those extra inches for safety.)

judy's journal, collage

judy’s journal, collage

I’ve tried abstaining from eating refined sugar before . . . . wish me strength of character and will (luck isn’t going to cut it). 

P.S.  Rosemary Lee, Seeking Equilibrium, is joining me.  Anyone else?  

Add your name in the comments box.  I dare you!

This is for You Tresy

In the early 1970’s I had a German Short-Haired Pointer.  She came to us when she was 3 years old.  Her name was “Tres”.  She was beautiful.  One hundred percent dark “liver colored except for the tip of her tail and  3 (tres) large, solid white spots down her back .    Field trained, she knew how to sit, stay, fetch, heel, retrieve and a million other commands I don’t even know the name of.  As hunting dogs, German Short-Haired Pointers, have incredible stamina and energy.

So every day I took her to run in the park where there was a small lake, home to many ducks and migrating birds.    When Trecy spotted a duck she would point – front leg up, white-tipped tail straight back, waiting for a command.   She soon figured out that the only commands I knew had nothing to do with ducks and she’d  jump into the water. 

Except she didn’t know how to swim! While her hind legs dangled straight down in the water her front legs beat furiously, sending up a huge spray, propelling her through the water.  People would come from all over the park to see what the commotion was.  Thank goodness she couldn’t swim properly so the ducks could always get away.

Trecy was the sweetest, most gentle creature and everyone loved her.  When I received this e-mail from Rosemary Lee tears came to my eyes.  Look at the pictures of the Orangutan and the German Short Haired Pointer and you’ll see why.

*     *     *     *     *

“After losing his parents, this 3-year-old orangutan was so depressed he wouldn’t eat and didn’t respond to any medical treatments. The veterinarians thought he would surely die from sadness.”

“The zoo keepers found an old sick dog on the grounds in the park at the zoo where the orangutan lived and took the dog to the animal treatment center. The dog arrived at the same time the orangutan was there being treated.”

“The 2 lost souls met and have been inseparable ever since. The orangutan found a new reason to live and each always tries his best to be a good companion to his new-found friend.”

“They are together 24 hours a day in all their activities.”

“They live in Northern California where swimming is their favorite pastime, although Roscoe (the orangutan) is a little afraid of the water and needs his friend’s help to swim.”

“They have found more than a friendly shoulder to lean on.”

Long Live Friendship!!!

“I don’t know… some say life is too short, others say it is too long, but I know that nothing that we do makes sense if we don’t touch the hearts of others… while it lasts!

May you always have
Love to Share, Health to Spare, and Friends who Care.”

No Left Turns

Those of you who follow Max’s Blog know that we love to post other people’s creative expressions.  Right now I’m sitting on a back log.  After re-reading this I decided that I’d better start sharing them with you before my expiration date runs out.  

  • I received this from Rosemary Lee at SEEKING EQUILIBRIUM
  • It’s long.  
  • It’s worth your time to read.

Rosemary LeeSEEKING EQUILIBRIUM 

“This is a wonderful story that I wanted to share with all my friends…I hope it makes you reflect a little on the good things in your life and makes you smile…even laugh”

“My father never drove a car. Well, that’s not quite right. I should say I
never saw him drive a car.

He quit driving in 1927, when he was 25 years old, and the last car he
drove was a 1926 Whippet.

“In those days,” he told me when he was in his 90s, “to drive a car you
had to do things with your hands, and do things with your feet, and look
every which way, and I decided you could walk through life and enjoy it or drive through life and miss it.”

At which point my mother, a sometimes salty Irishwoman, chimed in: “Oh, baloney!” she said. “He hit a horse.”

“Well,” my father said, “there was that, too.”

So my brother and I grew up in a household without a car. The neighbors
all had cars — the Kollingses next door had a green 1941 Dodge, the Van Laninghams across the street a gray 1936 Plymouth, the Hopsons two doors down a black 1941 Ford — but we had none.

My father, a newspaperman in Des Moines , would take the streetcar to work and, often as not, walk the 3 miles home. If he took the streetcar home, my mother and brother and I would walk the three blocks to the streetcar stop, meet him and walk home together.

My brother, David, was born in 1935, and I was born in 1938, and sometimes, at dinner, we’d ask how come all the neighbors had cars but we had none. “No one in the family drives,” my mother would explain, and that was that.

But, sometimes, my father would say, “But as soon as one of you boys turns 16, we’ll get one.” It was as if he wasn’t sure which one of us would turn 16 first.

But, sure enough , my brother turned 16 before I did, so in 1951 my parents bought a used 1950 Chevrolet from a friend who ran the parts department at a Chevy dealership downtown..

It was a four-door, white model, stick shift, fender skirts, loaded with everything, and, since my parents didn’t drive, it more or less became my brother’s car.

Having a car but not being able to drive didn’t bother my father, but it didn’t make sense to my mother..

So in 1952, when she was 43 years old, she asked a friend to teach her to drive. She learned in a nearby cemetery, the place where I learned to drive the following year and where, a generation later, I took my two sons to practice driving. The cemetery probably was my father’s idea. “Who can your mother hurt in the cemetery?” I remember him saying more than once.

For the next 45 years or so, until she was 90, my mother was the driver in the family. Neither she nor my father had any sense of direction, but he loaded up on maps — though they seldom left the city limits — and
appointed himself navigator. It seemed to work.

Still, they both continued to walk a lot. My mother was a devout Catholic, and my father an equally devout agnostic, an arrangement that didn’t seem to bother either of them through their 75 years of marriage.

(Yes, 75 years, and they were deeply in love the entire time.)

He retired when he was 70, and nearly every morning for the next 20 years or so, he would walk with her the mile to St. Augustin’s Church. She would walk down and sit in the front pew, and he would wait in the
back until he saw which of the parish’s two priests was on duty that morning. If it was the pastor, my father then would go out and take a 2-mile walk, meeting my mother at the end of the service and walking her
home.

If it was the assistant pastor, he’d take just a 1-mile walk and then head back to the church. He called the priests “Father Fast” and “Father Slow.”

After he retired, my father almost always accompanied my mother whenever she drove anywhere, even if he
had no reason to go along. If she were going to the beauty parlor, he’d sit in the car and read, or go take a
stroll or, if it was summer, have her keep the engine running so he could listen to the Cubs game on the radio. In the evening, then, when I’d stop by, he’d explain: “The Cubs lost again. The millionaire on second base
made a bad throw to the millionaire on first base, so the multimillionaire on third base scored.”

If she were going to the grocery store, he would go along to carry the bags out — and to make sure she loaded up on ice cream. As I said, he was always the navigator, and once, when he was 95 and she was 88 and still
driving, he said to me, “Do you want to know the secret of a long life?”

“I guess so,” I said, knowing it probably would be something bizarre.

“No left turns,” he said.

“What?” I asked.

“No left turns,” he repeated. “Several years ago, your mother and I
read
an article that said most accidents that old people are in happen when
they turn left in front of oncoming traffic.

As you get older, your eyesight worsens, and you can lose your depth
perception, it said. So your mother and I decided never again to make a
left turn.”

“What?” I said again.

“No left turns,” he said. “Think about it.. Three rights are the same as a left, and that’s a lot safer. So we always make three rights..”

“You’re kidding!” I said, and I turned to my mother for support.
“No,” she said, “your father is right. We make three rights. It works.”
But then she added: “Except when your father loses count.”

I was driving at the time, and I almost drove off the road as I started laughing.

“Loses count?” I asked.

“Yes,” my father admitted, “that sometimes happens. But it’s not a problem. You just make seven rights, and you’re okay again.”

I couldn’t resist. “Do you ever go for 11?” I asked.

“No,” he said ” If we miss it at seven, we just come home and call it a bad day. Besides, nothing in life is so important it can’t be put off another day or another week.” My mother was never in an accident, but one evening she handed me her car keys and said she had decided to quit driving. That was in 1999, when she
was 90.

She lived four more years, until 2003.  My father died the next year, at 102.

They both died in the bungalow they had moved into in 1937 and bought a few years later for $3,000. (Sixty years later, my brother and I paid $8,000 to have a shower put in the tiny bathroom — the house had never had one. My father would have died then and there if he knew the shower cost nearly three times what he paid for the house.)

He continued to walk daily — he had me get him a treadmill when he was 101 because he was afraid he’d fall on the icy sidewalks but wanted to keep exercising — and he was of sound mind and sound body until the
moment he died.

One September afternoon in 2004, he and my son went with me when I had to give a talk in a neighboring town, and it was clear to all three of us that he was wearing out, though we had the usual wide-ranging conversation about politics and newspapers and things in the news.

A few weeks earlier, he had told my son, “You know, Mike, the first hundred years are a lot easier than the second hundred.” At one point in our drive that Saturday, he said, “You know, I’m probably not going to
live much longer.”

“You’re probably right,” I said.

“Why would you say that?” He countered, somewhat irritated.

“Because you’re 102 years old,” I said..

“Yes,” he said, “you’re right.” He stayed in bed all the next day.

That night, I suggested to my son and daughter that we sit up with him through the night.

He appreciated it, he said, though at one point, apparently seeing us look gloomy, he said:
“I would like to make an announcement. No one in this room is dead yet”

An hour or so later, he spoke his last words:

“I want you to know,” he said, clearly and lucidly, “that I am in no pain.
I am very comfortable. And I have had as happy a life as anyone on this earth could ever have.”

A short time later, he died.

I miss him a lot, and I think about him a lot. I’ve wondered now and then how it was that my family and I were so lucky that he lived so long..

I can’t figure out if it was because he walked through life,
Or because he quit taking left turns. “

  • Life is too short to wake up with regrets.
  • So love the people who treat you right.
  • Forget about the one’s who don’t.
  • Believe everything happens for a reason.
  • If you get a chance,take it & if it changes your life, let it.
  • Nobody said life would be easy, they just promised it would most likely be worth it.
  • ENJOY LIFE NOW – IT HAS AN EXPIRATION DATE!”

A Rose Never Smelled so Sweet

Dear Rose,
I want to express my sincere appreciation for you so helpfully putting all of my phobias in one place and adding a few I hadn’t considered.

This is to let you know I am moving to a remote island somewhere in the ocean when I can find a way to get there without going by plane or boat because they are too dangerous.

Oh, and please don’t call me because I’ve gotten rid of my cell phone which emits cancer causing rays.
With eternal appreciation
j
P.S. Thank goodness I use a laptop with a touch pad!

The above was my response to an e-mail Rosemary Lee from Seeking Equilibrium sent me.  Here’s her e-mail:

“As we progress through to the end of 2012, I want to express my sincere appreciation for your educational e-mails over the past year. I am totally screwed up now and have little hope of recovery in my life time.

  • I can no longer open a bathroom door without using a paper towel, nor let the waitress put lemon slices in my ice water without worrying about the bacteria on the lemon peel.
  • I can’t sit down on a hotel bedspread because I can only imagine what has happened on it since it was last washed.
  • I have trouble shaking hands with someone who has been driving because the number one pastime while driving alone is picking one’s nose.
  • Eating a little snack sends me on a guilt trip because I can only imagine how many gallons of trans fats I have consumed over the years.
  •  I can’t touch any woman’s handbag for fear she has placed it on the floor of a public toilet.
  •  I MUST SEND MY SPECIAL THANKS for the email about rat poop in the glue on envelopes because I now have to use a wet sponge with every envelope that needs sealing.
  • ALSO, now I have to scrub the top of every can I open for the same reason.
  •  I can’t have a drink in a bar because I fear I’ll wake up in a bathtub full of ice with my kidneys gone.
  •  I can’t eat at KFC because their chickens are actually horrible mutant freaks with no eyes, feet or feathers.
  • I can’t use cancer-causing deodorants even though I smell like a water buffalo on a hot day.
  •  THANKS TO YOU I have learned that my prayers only get answered if I forward an e-mail to seven of my friends and make a wish within five minutes.
  • BECAUSE OF YOUR CONCERN, I no longer drink Coca Cola because it can remove toilet stains.
  •  I no longer buy petrol without taking someone along to watch the car, so a serial killer doesn’t crawl in my back seat when I’m filling up.
  • I no longer use Cling Wrap in the microwave because it causes seven different types of cancer.
  • AND THANKS FOR LETTING ME KNOW I can’t boil a cup of water in the microwave anymore because it will blow up in my face, disfiguring me for life.
  •  I no longer go to the cinema because I could be pricked with a needle infected with AIDS when I sit down.
  • I no longer go to shopping centres because someone will drug me with a perfume sample and rob me.
  • And I no longer answer the phone because someone will ask me to dial a number for which I will get a huge phone bill with calls to Jamaica , Uganda , Singapore and Uzbekistan ..
  •  THANKS TO YOU I can’t use anyone’s toilet but mine because a big black snake could be lurking under the seat and cause me instant death when it bites my butt.
  • AND THANKS TO YOUR GREAT ADVICE I can’t ever pick up a 25 cent coin dropped in the parking lot because it was probably placed there by a sex molester waiting to grab me as I bend over.
  •  I can’t do any gardening because I’m afraid I’ll get bitten by the Violin Spider and my hand will fall off.
  • If you don’t send this e-mail to at least 144,000 people in the next 70 minutes, a large dove with diarrhea will land on your head at 5:00 p.m. tomorrow afternoon, and the fleas from 120 camels will infest your back, causing you to grow a hairy hump. I know this will occur because it actually happened to a friend of my next door neighbor’s ex mother-in-law’s second husband’s cousin’s best friend’s beautician . . .

Oh, and by the way…
A German scientist from Argentina , after a lengthy study, has discovered that people with insufficient brain activity read their e-mails with their hand on the mouse.
Don’t bother taking it off now, it’s too late.
P. S. I now keep my toothbrush in the living room, because I was told by e-mail that water splashes over 6 ft. out of the toilet.
NOW YOU HAVE YOURSELF A VERY GOOD DAY”

😉 Rosemary,  Seeking Equilibrium

YOU can Win this Contest: Up Up and Away!

Falling DOWN side UP?

Win a free Hypnotic Healing Recording!

Win notoriety for your grammatical excellence, for your knowledge of the English language, for your keen mind,

for your perseverance, for being up to date and up to the challenge of

submitting  all the different ways UP is used that are not up-loaded in this post.

Now . . . UP is a two-letter word that perhaps has more meanings than any other two-letter word

  • It’s easy to understand UP, meaning toward the sky or at the top of the list, but
  • when we awaken in the morning, why do we wake UP ?
  • At a meeting, why does a topic come UP?
  • Why do we speak UP and
  • why are the officers UP for election and
  • why is it UP to the secretary to write UP a report?
  • We call UP our friends.
  • People stir UP trouble, line UP for tickets, work UP an appetite, and think UP excuses.
  • To be dressed is one thing, but to be dressed UP is special.
  • A drain must be opened UP because it is stopped UP.
  • And we use it to brighten UP a room, polish UP the silver;
  • we warm UP the leftovers and clean UP the kitchen.
  • We lock UP the house and some guys fix UP the old car..
  • We open UP a store in the morning but we close it UP at night.
  • We seem to be pretty mixed UP about UP!

Rules:

  1. Use the word “up” in a sentence or a phrase that has not been used in this post.
  2. DO NOT look the word UP in a dictionary because in a desk-sized dictionary, up takes UP almost 1/4th of the page and can add UP to about thirty definitions.
  3. Send your entry in ONE (1) comment (in the comment box) to this post:  https://judithwesterfield.wordpress.com/2011/09/02/win-this-contest-up-up-and-away/   (I will not count up the number of UP’s sent to me by e-mail or multiple comments)
  4. Deadline for submissions:  Monday, September 5th 5 pm

So if you are UP to it,  try building UP a list of the many ways UP is used and send it.

Falling UP side DOWN?

It will take UP a lot of your time, but if you don’t give UP, you may wind UP with a hundred or more and be the winner of a free Hypnotic Healing Recording!

Don’t let UP get you down.

Thanks to

http://www.rosemaryl.blogspot.com/

“SEEKING EQUILIBRIUM”

for this post!

Rose, for sending this to me I’m giving you a leg up!

5 extra credit points!

P.S.  Check up Rose’s blog to see what kind of person would up and send me this!