NATIONAL CHOCOLATE CUPCAKE DAY

TL 10-18 NATIONAL CHOCOLATE CUPCAKE DAY

The inner foodie is celebrating once again…  today is NATIONAL CHOCOLATE CUPCAKE DAY!  I looked at a lot of recipes, and they all looked very good – but I ended up on the Splenda website.  Here’s a healthier version that I bet tastes just as good as the others without the extra sugar spike.

http://recipes.splenda.com/recipes/1397152-Chocolate-Chocolate-Cupcakes

Whether it is a chocolate cupcake from a gourmet bakery or one you bake in your own kitchen, we all agree that they are a special treat!

Click image to enlarge

Cupcakes were first baked during the 19th century in the United States.  They are called cupcakes because they were first baked in cups and the first recipe was measured out by the cup:  One cup butter, two cups sugar, three cups flour, four eggs, one cup milk and one spoonful baking soda.

Nowadays, cupcakes are made with a variety of flavors, ingredients and decorations, but simple chocolate cupcakes are by far the favorite.

purple & pink go well with chocolate
Purple & pink go well with chocolate cupcakes!

Are you hungry for chocolate yet?  You’re welcome!  Maybe you could round-up the grandkids and make some baking memories.  Maybe you could make some extra batches for folks who probably don’t get cupcakes very often – like people in a nursing home or homeless shelter.

It’s okay to have a few yourselves too, you know!

I’ve seen the brightest colored paper muffin cups at Walmart.  They have orange and bright blue.  One of the designs was confetti.  Of course they have the pastel ones and the plain white.

You don’t have to be planning a birthday party to make cupcakes anymore, but you might want to have a party after your yummy cupcakes are baked!  Wouldn’t today be a great day to make some chocolate cupcakes!  Get to baking and frosting, folks!

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ST. PATRICK’S DAY

TL 3-17 ST. PATRICK'S DAY

If a man who cannot count finds a four-leaf clover, is he lucky?  – Stanislaw J. Lec

My friend Mary has been to Ireland.  As she explained all the sights she saw, I imagined myself being there.  There’s a reason it’s called The Emerald Isle, it looks like the grass is just as green as green can be.  The land looks so rich and lush, with a lot of rocks to go with it, which I suppose explains all the stone walls we see in photographs.

May the Irish hills caress you.
May her lakes and rivers bless you.
May the luck of the Irish enfold you.
May the blessings of Saint Patrick behold you.
– Irish Blessing

I’m not Irish, but who cares?  Today I will wear my Celtic knot necklace and matching earrings and pretend I am Irish!  We will probably eat at a local Irish pub and talk about the rainbow and the pot o’ gold at the end of it!  I’ll have a non-alcoholic green drink and sing off-key if the occasion calls for it.

Did you know that a rainbow is actually a full circle?  So technically, there is not an “end” of the rainbow – it goes on and on…  so much for that Irish tradition.  I’m not joking – to see a photo, go to

http://www.slate.com/blogs/bad_astronomy/2014/09/17/circular_rainbow_rare_optic_effect_seen_from_the_air.html

Don’t get me started on the gold.  I heard there are some of those gold companies that have been accused of short-changing their ounces, if you know what I mean.  Ugh – these are days to be wary of any transaction you undertake to be sure!

I like this poem by Lucinda Berry Hill.

I don’t have one negative thing to say about emerald-green!  As far as I know, emerald-green is still the color to be wearing today (unless you’re fond of being pinched).   I have no particular aversion to being pinched, depending on how hard and by whom…  LOL!

Oh, I hope you will subscribe to my You Tube channel!  See you there!  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCS7sW2Aph5FkgrJUBbXLQcA

As we think of the luck of the Irish today, I am reminded of a story about a very unlucky bank robber:

When an attempted robbery at a home-improvement store went awry, the suspect fled across the street and jumped a fence…  right into a nudist resort.  As the Orlando Sentinel pointed out, because the would-be criminal was “one of the only folks wearing clothing,” he was easily spotted by police.

May God be with you as you celebrate today!  🙂

 

 

WORLD CARD MAKING DAY

TL 10-4 WORLD CARD MAKING DAY

 Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might, for in the realm of the dead, where you are going, there is neither working nor planning nor knowledge nor wisdom. – Ecclesiastes 9:10

Do you enjoy being crafty and making a friend’s day? So do I! Today is WORLD CARD MAKING DAY, so let’s get busy making some happy cards!

How cute is that? It’s a real birthday candle!

I like this get well card! I’m sure receiving this would put a smile on my face!

Nowadays there are many methods to create cards of all types! Stamps and ink, punches and other ways to cut shapes, or maybe like me, you want to make your cards digitally. There is no right or wrong way to make a card and the type of card you make is limited only by your imagination!

I’ve never made an interactive card before, have you?

I like to make Thanksgiving cards. I’m so thankful for my friends and like to make them something special to let them know I care about them. I’m not sure if I could do all the drawing for this, but I’d be willing to try this:

How about sending some Thanksgiving Blessings?

Fall is the time of year we begin to think about warmth and nothing catches my eye faster than a cozy quilt. I don’t know how to make a quilt, but I think I could do this cute card:

There are literally TONS of ideas for cards of all kinds on the internet. Pinterest alone can keep you busy searching for just the right idea!

Oh – take a look at this one. I think I could even do this!

So many cute ideas! Get a group of friends together and start making some cards today! I’m sure you can think of someone who could use a handmade card just from you. Many years ago my pastor told me that when you give a gift, it reflects your personality. It’s the same principle with a handmade card. That card is something you took time to make especially for someone. When you take time – time you will never get back – to show someone how special they are, it means a great deal. Have fun making cards today! 😀

INTERNATIONAL COFFEE DAY

TL 9-29 INTERNATIONAL COFFEE DAY

What kind of sweetener do you use in your morning cup of Joe???

A diabetic needs as many facts as possible when choosing foods, but have you given much thought to the sweetener you use? There are so many choices out there! Most of us know that sugar is not really an option because it’s a simple carbohydrate and raises blood sugar very quickly. It has 15 calories per teaspoon.

When I was a kid in the 1960’s, the first diet soda, TAB, hit the market. That is the only soda my mother would drink. It was sweetened with SACCHARIN, which was linked to cancer back then, but that research was debunked, and the FDA and the National Cancer Institute believe it is safe. Saccharin these days goes under the name SWEET ‘N LOW. I call it as PINK SWEET. I don’t use pink, but I just don’t like the aftertaste.

A product containing ASPARTAME came out called EQUAL. It has 4 calories per teaspoon and is 200 times sweeter than sugar. It’s not easy to cook with and doesn’t work well in baked goods. Aspartame is deemed safe by the FDA and the National Cancer Institute, however, a study of more than 3,000 women linked it with kidney decline. Diabetics fight kidney issues to begin with, so for that reason alone I choose to leave aspartame alone. I call Equal BLUE SWEET. I don’t use blue, but it’s because I don’t like the aftertaste. I hate to disagree with Cher, but… oh well.

Then an artificial sweetener came out that begins as table sugar, undergoes a chemical process, and comes out 600 times sweeter than sugar with no calories. When you cook with it, use only half cup for one cup of sugar and check baked goods a few minutes before the recipe suggests. SPLENDA is my number two choice of artificial sweeteners. I call it YELLOW SWEET. I’m cautiously optimistic about SUCRALOSE, but wonder about chemically altering sugarcane. I think it’s too soon to tell if there are any side effects. It’s just too soon to tell. I use it – mostly in store-bought “diet” products such as diet cranberry juice, etc.

I use STEVIA, a zero-calorie sweetener extracted from a South American plant that is 200-300 times sweeter than sugar. I do not recommend the brand Pure Via or Truvia. I like spoonable Stevia and liquid stevia in coffee flavor for my coffee in the morning. There are also flavors like English toffee and lemon drop. Go to http://www.iherb.com for more information. And you can use Leslie’s code to save $5 off your first order.

OK – I think this guy is nuts – but there ya go.

Other natural choices would be agave nectar and monk fruit extract. Surprisingly, agave’s glycemic index is lower than sugar’s. It is not, however, calorie-free. It is better than sugar but not ideal in my opinion. Monk fruit extract is calorie-free and 150-300 times sweeter than sugar. It’s a little tricky to cook with because it varies in sweetness. Something more consistent should be used for cooking or baking.

We’ve come a long way since the days of TAB and horrible aftertaste! It’s great that we have so many choices these days. I’m so glad that diabetics can enjoy just a bit of SWEET once in a while. 😉

WORLD JUMP DAY

TL 7-20 WORLD JUMP DAY

7-20 WHAT'S JUMPING

There is no sound judgment or science to back this theory – but it was thought that if everyone began jumping for 2 minutes straight at a synchronized time – it would knock the earth off its axis.  Newsflash – not gonna happen.  I’ll tell you what some benefits of jumping today are:

Weight Loss  Hey – it’s good exercise.  It would look less silly if you were jumping a rope or doing jumping jacks, but if you jump non-stop for a couple of minutes it could only be a positive move.

Wake Up Some of us just blindly waddle to the bathroom and waddle blindly to the coffee maker.  The chances of your eyes opening wide and your brain thinking clearly improve when you have engaged in some physical activity.

Reason to Laugh Make plans with someone to jump for 2 minutes today.  As you watch your friend you cannot help but bust out laughing!  That alone should help you have a better day.

Making a Memory If you decide to be a part of this celebration, make sure somebody has a camera!  What a fun photo to put in a scrapbook!

Choose a Special Location If you have a group of folks from your church, why not meet at the church to do the jumping?  You can always bring a snack and have a brunch afterwards.  Hey – any excuse to eat at church, right?

Here’s a great song to jump to:

So maybe we won’t shift the orbit of planet Earth, stop global warming, extend daytime hours or create a more homogenous climate, but it will still be a fun time!  If 600 million folks jump up and down for 2 minutes it really won’t make a big change to the planet, but it might put you in a better mood to face the day!  Some call it a hoax, but I just think it’s all in good fun.  😉

 

 

 

CHICK-FIL-A’S COW APPRECIATION DAY

TL 7-11 CHICK-FIL-A'S COW APPRECIATION DAY

7-11 RISE ABOVE

The theme of the Christian life is based on forgiveness.  Once you are at peace with all around you, it’s time to enjoy life and have some fun.  Today is the day to dress up like a cow and go to Chick-fil-A for a free sandwich.  It’s amazing how much more fun life can be once the air is cleared.

To harbor a grudge against someone is to allow them to live rent-free in your mind. When people hurt us or make us angry, we often hold on to those feelings for a long time. Have you ever asked yourself why you can’t let something go when you need to? I wonder if God is trying to help us get tougher and maybe wiser at the same time.

To you who are ready for the truth, I say this: Love your enemies. Let them bring out the best in you, not the worst. When someone gives you a hard time, respond with the energies of prayer for that person. If someone slaps you in the face, stand there and take it. If someone grabs your shirt, giftwrap your best coat and make a present of it. If someone takes unfair advantage of you, use the occasion to practice the servant life. No more tit-for-tat stuff. Live generously. Here is a simple rule of thumb for behavior: Ask yourself what you want people to do for you; then grab the initiative and do it for them! If you only love the lovable, do you expect a pat on the back? Run-of-the-mill sinners do that. If you only help those who help you, do you expect a medal? Garden-variety sinners do that. If you only give for what you hope to get out of it, do you think that’s charity? The stingiest of pawnbrokers does that. I tell you, love your enemies. Help and give without expecting a return. You’ll never—I promise—regret it. Live out this God-created identity the way our Father lives toward us, generously and graciously, even when we’re at our worst. Our Father is kind; you be kind. – Luke 6:27-36

It takes a degree of maturity to obey and pray for those who hate you. Once you begin to pray for someone, you can never hate them again. Hate turns to pity and you are then able to love that person with genuine compassion that comes from God.  Eventually you might even be able to invite them to go to Chick-fil-A with you for COW APPRECIATION DAY.

It’s a challenge, but we have to forgive because we have been forgiven by our Lord. ❤

BACKWARD DAY

TL 1-31 BACKWARD DAY

What is Yad Drawkcab???  Well…  it’s BACKWARD DAY!!!  This is the time to do everything backward.  It’s so much easier for kids in school to do this.  Adults have been conditioned and need to literally make themselves do things backward.  Oh to be young again – and have the ability to be silly.

Write backward, talk backward. Wear your shirt with the back in the front. Eat a steak dinner for breakfast, and pancakes for dinner. Play a board game from the finish line to the start. Put a masking tape line on the floor and practice walking backwards.  Whatever you do, make it fun!

Just remember to post every selfie you take today – you can’t pick and choose which ones you put on facebook!

To see a person’s true face, look at the photos that do not get posted.  – Brandon Specktor

Use your imagination!  The sky is the limit.  What sort of backward things can you think of???

 Remember, Ginger Rogers did everything Fred Astaire did, but backwards and in high heels.  – Faith Whittlesey

This would be so much fun to celebrate with your kids or grandkids – and make sure you have the camera handy because you will definitely make some great memories for that scrapbook!

If you do decide to celebrate, make sure to share your photos with me on facebook!

Some parent is very talented with their video camera!  I really like the game of pool.  The spaghetti…  um – not so much.  I wonder how they did that.  

 To look backward for a while is to refresh the eye, to restore it, and to render it the more fit for its prime function of looking forward.  – Margaret Fairless Barber, The Roadmender

For one day, bond with your children in a most unusual way.  Live life to the fullest with your little ones while you have them.  You want to look backwards in time and remember more laughter than tears.

Again with the food…  LOL!!!  Oh well…

 In every real man a child is hidden that wants to play.   – Friedrich Nietzsche

Today I read about a mini-golf place that advertised they will celebrate Backward Day.  They will have everyone play the course backwards from hole 18 to hole 1.  Admission is also backwards – adults pay as children.  How fun would that be?

 Happy is he who still loves something he loved in the nursery:  He has not been broken in two by time; he is not two men, but one, and he has saved not only his soul but his life.   – G.K. Chesterton

That looks like fun.  The goal is to spend time with your kids and be happy!  May you and your family have a lovely Backward Day!  🙂