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Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Salad - Drink - Dessert --- for a light dinner

Celery - Butter Bean - Tuna  Salad
Total time : 30 Minutes   Serves : 4
Big, creamy butter beans give a tuna and celery salad terrific heartiness. The salad would also be delicious spooned over slices of warm grilled country bread.

2        tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2        teaspoons Dijon mustard
1/4    cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1/4    cup snipped chives
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
4        3-1/2-ounce cans Italian tuna in olive oil, drained
3        celery stalks with leaves, thinly sliced on the bias
2       15-ounce cans butter beans, drained and rinsed
1-1/2     tablespoons drained capers

1 .  In a small bowl, whisk the lemon juice with the mustard, then slowly whisk in the olive oil. Stir in the chives and season the lemon-mustard vinaigrette with salt and pepper.
2 .  In a large bowl, gently toss the drained tuna with the sliced celery, butter beans and capers. Add the lemon-mustard vinaigrette and toss to coat the salad. Season the salad with salt and pepper and serve at once.
Serve with Crusty bread.

Crisp, citrusy Sauvignon Blanc.

Makes  1 drink
This cocktail's name is a play on both the Spanish word for watermelon, sand?a, and "incendiary," referring to the peppery tequila and the spicy ancho chile rim.
1       teaspoon ancho chile powder
1       teaspoon kosher salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1     lime wedge
2     ounces blanco tequila
2     ounces watermelon juice
1/2   ounce fresh lime juice
1/4    ounce Simple Syrup

MAKE THE COCKTAIL In a small bowl, mix the kosher salt, sugar and ancho chile powder.

Moisten the outer rim of a highball glass with the lime wedge and coat lightly with chile salt. Fill a cocktail shaker with ice. Add all of the remaining ingredients and shake well. Fill the highball glass with ice and strain the drink into the glass.

Berries with Lemon-Thyme Sorbet 
Prep: 20 Minutes    Total time : 3 Hours   Serves : 4
Endlessly versatile, flavored syrups can be churned with ingredients like pureed fruit, fruit juice or fresh herbs in an ice cream machine to make sorbet. 

Lemon-Thyme Syrup
6       ounces strawberries, halved, or sliced if large
6       ounces raspberries
6       ounces blueberries
6       ounces sweet cherries, halved
Thyme sprigs, for garnish

Pour the Lemon-Thyme Syrup into an ice cream maker and freeze according to the manufacturer's instructions. Transfer the lemon-thyme sorbet to a plastic container, cover and freeze.
Shortly before serving, in a bowl, toss the berries with the cherries. Scoop the sorbet into bowls. Spoon the berries on top, garnish with the thyme sprigs and serve.
The sorbet can be frozen for up to 3 days.
Heart healthy

The invention that stops girls missing school every month

Tailor and pads

Written by BBC women's correspondent for Women's Magazine:
In Malawi a packet of sanitary pads can cost a whole day's pay, and girls often miss school because the cotton strips they use instead are inadequate. Charlotte Ashton met a woman in Blantyre who's come up with a solution.
It's a 14-year-old girl's worst nightmare. You're standing in front of your class when giggling erupts from the back and everyone's pointing at your behind. With despair you realize your sanitary pad has leaked and an embarrassing circle of blood has appeared on your dress. I clearly remember the anxious checking of my school skirt as a teenager. You'd pull aside a close friend: "Have I leaked?"
But the worst never actually happened and I don't remember seeing it happen to any classmates. Because in the West we're blessed with effective, disposable, affordable sanitary protection - the vast majority of us can afford pads or tampons every month.
Here in Malawi, that's not the case. The sanitary pads in the shops cost 500 Malawi kwacha (75 cents; 50p) per pack. That's nearly a whole day's pay at the minimum wage - and you really need two packs per period.
Imagine spending two days' wages every month just on sanitary pads. To find out what women do instead, I head to a school in a township on the outskirts of Blantyre, Malawi's second city, to talk periods with a group of teenage girls.

Classroom in Blantyre

"Tell me," I venture. "We're here to talk about sanitary pads. Do any of you use the disposable ones?"
A row of shaking heads then a brave hand goes up.
"We take pieces of old chitenge and tear them into strips." Benku is 15 and bright-eyed. Chitenges the pieces of cotton material Malawian women wear around their waists. "Then we fold them over and put them into our underwear."
"That must be uncomfortable," I say.
"Yes," she agrees. "Sometimes I get sores on my legs where the material rubs. And sometimes the chitenge falls out!
"That happened to me once in class. The boys were laughing. I was so embarrassed."

The monthly burden doesn't end there. The girls explain how they get up early or stay out late to wash the used strips - in a quiet moment when no-one's around to see. Hanging them up to dry in the sun would be too public a display of an issue that's taboo here. So the girls find a dark corner inside to dry their rags.
But unlike their mothers, aunts and grandmothers these young women have a champion, who's determined to tackle the problem.                
Trinitas is a tall, vivacious 31-year-old researcher at Blantyre's College of Medicine. When six boys but only two girls turned up for a focus group she was running at this school, she asked the teacher where they all were and was told they'd excused themselves that week because they were menstruating.
And that's a whole other tragic side to this issue: girls often don't leave the house while they're bleeding. "So how many days of school are you missing every month?" I ask the group.
"Five, five, six, four, five," they tell me.
Trinitas remembers this from her own schooldays and is angry that another generation of girls is suffering. She's the daughter of a single mother and studied at a basic government school. Yet she beat the odds and made it to university - thanks, she says, to her mother's insistence on the value of education.
With that in mind Trinitas bought an old treadle sewing machine and started making reusable, comfortably shaped, sanitary pads from fabrics available locally.  They have wings which snap together. She's been doing market research at the school and the girls have all tried out her pads.
The feedback is resoundingly positive. "They're so easy to wash!" says one girl. "The top layer is lovely and fleecy so they're comfortable," says another. Trinitas's challenge is to get capital investment in this chronically poor country - enough to scale up production and bring down the price so it's low enough for the average Malawian.
The girls are clearly excited by the new freedom this product could afford them. "The wings and the snaps mean I can move around as usual," chirps one. "We can do skipping rope and everything."
And with that I'm reminded that these schoolgirls deserve better than a week of discomfort and humiliation every single month.

Two years ago, another crusader for poverty stricken women of the world, Amy Peake, was leafing through a magazine she saw an image that shocked her. It showed thousands of refugees queuing for food in a bombed-out street in Damascus. In the foreground stood a woman, and for a split second she thought, "What if I was her? What if my children were there? And what if I got my period?"
Then her husband showed her a BBC News Magazine story about an Indian man who had invented a machine to produce cheap and hygienic sanitary pads after realizing his wife, and millions of other Indian women, used rags. He didn't want to sell the pads, he wanted women to make and sell their own.
Peake immediately thought: " A machine like that should be in the refugee camps, where women live in the direst circumstances and lack of sanitation - and if it isn't, perhaps I should take it there." So that's exactly what she did. And continues to do.

Women feeling compassion for other women and giving them options they never had before. That's what I love to hear.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Just tried these strawberry and milk pops and the kids gave them a thumbs up

 Our kids love any treat on a stick, especially in summer, so I am always on the lookout for frozen summer treats that are healthier than the ones we buy, which are full of food coloring and chemicals. They liked these but next time we are going to try equal parts strawberries and ripe mango and see if they turn orange.

1+ 1/4 cup (after hulling) very ripe strawberries 
caster sugar 1 tbsp
1 full to the top cup of condensed milk
 not quite 2/3rds cup whole milk


Heat the oven to 400 degrees F. Halve the strawberries and toss with the sugar on an oven tray lined with parchment paper. Roast for  10-15 minutes until soft and juicy. Tip into a blender or food processor with the condensed milk and whole milk and whizz until smooth. Divide into popsicle molds and freeze overnight.

Maxy sez : Drinking and Type 2 Diabetes ---Have a Safe Memorial Day

By Marijke Vroomen-Durning, RN | Medically reviewed by Pat F. Bass III, MD, MPH

Alcohol doesn't have to be off-limits if your diabetes is controlled, you're otherwise healthy, and you know how to handle your blood sugar when it veers off path.
Popping a champagne bottle, clinking glasses for a toast, or sharing a beer with friends are time-honored rituals. If you have type 2 diabetes, does this mean those rituals can no longer be part of your life?

Type 2 Diabetes: Questions :

You should ask yourself these three questions before you consider drinking alcohol:

Is your diabetes under control?
Do you have any other illnesses that could be made worse by drinking alcohol?
Do you know how to manage your blood sugar if it dips too low or rises too high  ?
If your diabetes is not controlled; if other illnesses affect your liver, your heart, or your nerves; or if you don’t know what to do if your blood sugar fluctuates too much, alcohol may cause some significant side effects.

Finally, if you didn’t drink alcohol before you were diagnosed with diabetes, you probably shouldn’t start now.

Regular drinking can also interfere with good diabetes self-care. A large study of nearly 66,000 patients with diabetes found that the more patients drank, the less likely they were to adhere to important self-care behaviors like getting enough exercise, not smoking, eating a healthy diet, and taking their diabetes medications.

Type 2 Diabetes: Your Physician’s Input:

Kathy Honick, RN, CDE, a diabetes educator with Barnes Jewish Hospital in St. Louis, says people with type 2 diabetes should talk with their physician about how often — and how much — they drink.

If you’re healthy and your doctor doesn’t see any reason why you can’t drink alcohol, as always, moderation is the key. Robert Ruxin, MD, an endocrinologist in Ridgefield, Conn., says moderation means “limit to one alcoholic drink equivalent per woman and two per men, if they’re used to it,” each day. A "drink equivalent" is one beer, six ounces of wine, or 1½ ounces of hard liquor.

Type 2 Diabetes: Why the Fuss About Alcohol?

Your liver plays a role in balancing your blood sugar-to-insulin ratio when you’re not eating or drinking. Dr. Ruxin explains, “Alcohol slows down your liver’s ability to produce sugar during the fasting state or overnight, which is when our sugar levels drop to the lowest [level.]”

Honick adds that if you drink alcohol before you’ve eaten, your blood glucose level will start dropping, and that’s a problem. “The liver will be unable to release the necessary glucose into the bloodstream to correct it because it has to focus on clearing out the alcohol first.”

So, before having that drink, Honick suggests that you prepare for it. Have a balanced meal or a snack that has protein, carbohydrate, and fats in it beforehand. You need the food to provide sugar to your body, counteracting the alcohol’s effects.

Type 2 Diabetes: Precautions:

If you are going to have a drink or two, there are some precautions you should take to reduce the risk of low blood sugar, also called hypoglycemia. Aside from eating, as Honick suggests, they include:

Take your glucometer with you so you can monitor your blood sugar levels.
Be sure your companions know how to recognize the signs and symptoms of low blood sugar and what to do if they see them.
Because glucagon, an emergency shot some diabetics carry to inject if their sugar gets too low, doesn’t work if you have alcohol in your blood, make sure someone knows to call 911 if you become unconscious.
Wear a medical alert bracelet or some other type of identification that notifies emergency personnel of your diabetes.
Having diabetes doesn’t mean you have to give up those time-honored rituals. But it does mean you need to prepare and be careful.

Saturday, May 28, 2016

Autistic boy falls in love with Snow White

JACK IS TWO YEARS OLD. He was having nothing to do with any of the characters on our Disney vacation . You see, he has autism and is non-verbal. He is on the shy side with people he does not know. THEN... he met Snow White. I must have cried 1000 tears watching his interaction with her. He was in love.

Thursday, May 26, 2016

Bad Parenting

I don't mean to be judgemental and correct me if I'm wrong, but  these candid photos strike me as parenting fails of the first degree

I warned you not to wander off

How lazy are you when you make your baby get up in the night and feed himself?

Got to get em started early on the road to mass killer

Look at the cute alligators honey
Don't worry, he's perfectly safe

It'll only hurt for a little while and then we will see about piercings

 Carry the dog and walk the baby??
She is definitely high on something.

Go figure people

Food for Thought : Memorial Day --- Remember Why !

                         Significance of Memorial Day 2016
Memorial Day 2016 formally known as Decoration Day, is a federal holiday observed yearly on the last Monday of May. Memorial Day 2016 is a day that commemorates all men and women who have died while serving in the military for the United States of America. 

History of Memorial Day
The history of Memorial Day 2016 dates back to the American Civil War. It started as an event to honour soldiers who had died during the war. It is said to be inspired by the way people in the Southern states honoured the dead. The original national celebration of Decoration Day took place on 30 May 1868. There was over twenty four cities and towns across the United States that claim to be the birthplace of Memorial Day. Waterloo (New York) was officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day by President Lyndon Johnson in May 1966. In the late 19th century, the holiday (previously known as Decoration Day) became known as Memorial Day and was expanded to include the deceased veterans of all the wars fought by American forces. Originally, the holiday used to be celebrated on May 30, regardless of the day of the week that it fell on. In 1968, the Uniform Holidays Bill was passed and as a result the day changed. 

Traditions of Memorial Day
Traditionally Memorial Day is viewed as a time of honour and remembrance. Throughout the United States it is common to visit cemeteries, particularly military ones, and decorate graves of the deceased with flowers, small flags and wreathes. Other common traditions of Memorial Day 2016 that are still practiced today include the raising the U.S. flag quickly to the tops of flagpoles, slowly lowered to half-mast, and then it is raised again to full height at noon. The lowering of the flag at half-mast is meant to honour the fallen soldiers who have died for their country over the years. While re-raising the flag is meant to symbolize the resolve of the living to carry on the fight for freedom so that the nation’s heroes will not have died in vain. On the United States Capitol Building’s West Lawn, a Memorial Day concert is held annually and is broadcasted live around the country. Additionally, there are thousands of Memorial Day 2016 parades all across the country in cities small and large. Many will wear or put on a display of red poppies on this day as a symbol of fallen soldiers. This tradition grew out of the famous poem by Canadian John McCrae known as ‘In Flander’s Fields’, where Moina Michael conceived an idea to wear red poppies on Memorial day in honour of those who died serving the nation during war. 

Slaw with Poppy-Seed Dressing
2 tablespoons cider vinegar
1-1/2 teaspoons honey
1-1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1-1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
1 teaspoon poppy seeds
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 cup thinly sliced green cabbage
1 cup thinly sliced red cabbage
1/2 cup pre-cut matchstick carrots
Combine first 8 ingredients (through pepper) in a bowl. Add cabbage and carrots; toss to coat.
                                                            Strawberry-Lemon Mojitos
My son is the mixologist in the family  , this is a a smoothing  drink  for  relaxing  outside   . Strawberries sweeten these mojitos from Joaquin Simo. "This is a great drink when you're in the mood for something fruity," says Simo. Use a molasses-based rum (like white Brugal) for a smoother drink, or a sugarcane-based rum (such as white Barbancourt) for a drier cocktail.
8 lemon wedges
24 mint leaves, plus 4 mint sprigs, for garnish (optional)
4 strawberries, plus 2 halved strawberries, for garnish
Ice cubes, plus crushed ice
8 ounces gold or aged rum
3 ounces fresh lemon juice
2 ounces prepared sugarcane syrup or agave nectar
In a cocktail shaker, muddle the lemon wedges with the whole strawberries and mint leaves. Add ice and the rum, lemon juice and sugarcane syrup; shake well. Strain into crushed ice–filled highball glasses. Garnish with the berry halves and mint sprigs.

Memorial Day 2016 is a federal holiday and falls on the last Monday of May. The date of the Holiday changes each year but always remains on a Monday .

A proud grand-poppa 
Stay safe and  drink responsibly -- always  have a designated  driver 

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

One man saves 6500 babies' lives

For years doctors in the US made little attempt to save the lives of premature babies, but there was one place distressed parents could turn for help - a sideshow on Coney Island. Here one man saved thousands of lives and eventually changed the course of American medical science.

In the early years of the 20th Century, visitors to Coney Island could see some extraordinary attractions. A tribe transported from the Philippines, "midget villages", a re-enactment of the Boer War by 1,000 soldiers including veterans from both sides, and death-defying roller coaster rides. But for 40 years, from 1903 to 1943, America's premier amusement park was also home to a genuine life-and-death struggle, played out beside the surf.

Martin Couney's Infant Incubator facility was one of Coney Island's most popular exhibits. "All the World Loves a Baby" read a sign above the entrance. Inside, premature babies fought for their lives, tended by a team of dedicated medical staff. To see the babies, you paid 25 cents. A guard-rail prevented visitors getting too close to the tiny figures encased in incubators.
Why were premature babies, who would now be cared for in a neonatal ward, displayed as entertainment?

The man who ran the exhibit was Martin Couney, dubbed "the incubator doctor" - and although he practised in the sideshows, his operation was cutting-edge. Couney employed a team of nurses and wet nurses who lived onsite, along with two local physicians.
In America, many doctors at the time held the view that premature babies were genetically inferior "weaklings" whose fate was a matter for God. Without intervention, the vast majority of infants born prematurely were destined to die.
Couney was an unlikely medical pioneer. He wasn't a professor at a great university or a surgeon at a teaching hospital. He was a German-Jewish immigrant, shunned by the medical establishment, and condemned by many as a self-publicist and charlatan.

But to the parents of the children he saved, and to the millions of people who flocked to see his show, he was a miracle-worker.

Beth Allen

The incubators Couney used were the latest models, imported directly from Europe - France was then the world leader in premature infant care with the US lagging several decades behind.
Each incubator was more than 5ft (1.5m) tall, made of steel and glass, and stood on legs. A water boiler on the outside supplied hot water to a pipe running underneath a bed of fine mesh on which the baby slept, while a thermostat regulated the temperature. Another pipe carried fresh air from outside the building into the incubator, first passing through absorbent wool suspended in antiseptic or medicated water, then through dry wool, to filter out impurities. On top, a chimney-like device with a revolving fan blew the exhausted air upwards and out of the incubators.
Caring for premature babies was expensive. In 1903, it cost about $15 a day ($405 or £277 today) to care for each baby in Couney's facility.

But Couney did not charge the parents a penny for their medical care - the public paid. They came in such numbers that Couney easily covered his operating costs, paid his staff a good wage and had enough left over to begin planning more exhibits. In time, these made Couney a wealthy man.

"Nobody else was offering to do anything to save me. Without Martin Couney I wouldn't have had a life." Beth Allen, Incubator baby, born 1941.

Beth Allen held by one of the incubator nurses
Couney saw his job as not only to save the lives of the premature babies, but also to advocate on their behalf. He gave lectures reciting the names of famous men who had been born prematurely and gone on to achieve great things, such as Mark Twain, Napoleon, Victor Hugo, Charles Darwin, and Sir Isaac Newton.
He maintained his facility for 40 years at Coney Island, and set up a similar one at Atlantic City in 1905, which he also ran until 1943. Over the years he took his show to other amusement parks, and to World's Fairs and Expositions across America. Although he made his name and his fortune in America, it was in Europe that Couney got his first taste of life as a showman. In 1897 he exhibited incubators at the Victorian Era Exhibition in Earls Court and they were a huge hit. Some 3,600 people visited the show on opening day alone, and the British medical journal, The Lancet, gave it a glowing write-up.
The following year, Couney made his American debut at the Trans-Mississippi and International Exposition in Omaha, Nebraska. Sensing the huge opportunities for someone like him to exhibit in America, where there was always a fair or an expo taking place somewhere, Couney immigrated.

1869 Martin Couney is born in Krotoschen, then part of Prussia
1903 Couney marries one of his nurses, Annabelle Segner, in New York
1907 His wife gives birth to a daughter, Hildegarde, born six weeks premature, weighing just 3lb
- Years later Hildegarde later trained as a nurse and joined her father's business
1950 Couney dies at the age of 80. His death is marked with an obituary in the New York Times

Couney's techniques were advanced for the time, including his emphasis on breast milk and his strictness about hygiene. But some of his methods were unconventional. Most hospital doctors believed that contact with premature babies should be kept to a minimum to reduce the risk of infection. But Couney encouraged his nurses to take the babies out of the incubators to hug and kiss them, believing they responded to affection.
Eager to distance himself from Coney Island's more freakish elements, Couney stressed that his facility was a miniature hospital, not a sideshow attraction. The nurses wore starched white uniforms. He and the doctors wore suits topped with physician's white coats. The incubator facility was always scrubbed spotlessly clean. Couney employed a cook to prepare nutritious meals for his wet nurses. If any were discovered smoking, drinking alcohol or snacking on a hot dog, he would fire them immediately.

Yet Couney was not averse to adopting a few showman's tactics himself. He instructed the nurses to dress the babies in clothes several sizes too large to emphasize how small they were. A big bow tied around the middle of their swaddling clothes further added to the effect.
Despite his life-saving work, children's charities, physicians and health officials accused the incubator doctor of exploiting the babies and endangering their lives by putting them on show. There were regular attempts to shut him down.

Luna Park, Coney Island, New York, 1890
But as time passed, Couney's track record of saving lives, and his evident sincerity, began to attract supporters from the world of mainstream medicine. In 1914, while exhibiting in Chicago, Couney met a local paediatrician, Julius Hess, who would go on to become known as the father of American neonatology. It was the beginning of a lifelong friendship and an important professional relationship. The two men ran an infant incubator facility together at the 1933/34 Chicago World's Fair.
Some physicians began sending babies to Couney, a tacit acknowledgement at last of the quality of care the babies received in his facility.In a career spanning nearly half a century he saved nearly 6,500 babies with a success rate of 85%.
Hospitals in the US were slow to establish their own dedicated facilities for premature babies, though. The first on the Eastern seaboard arrived in New York in 1939, 36 years after Couney brought his show to Coney Island.  In an article reflecting on Couney's long career in the New Yorker in 1939, the legendary journalist A J Liebling noted: "There are not enough doctors and nurses experienced in this field to go around.
Care of prematures as private patients is hideously expensive... six dollars a day for mother's milk… rental of an incubator and hospital room, oxygen, several visits a day by a physician, and fifteen dollars a day for three shifts of nurses."
The best medical minds in New York couldn't come up with a workable model to save these vulnerable babies. Yet, 40 years earlier, a young immigrant from Europe with little in the way of experience had done just that. Today Couney's legacy is being re-examined by doctors, and many of Couney's "babies" speak proudly in his defense.
Carol Boyce Heinisch was born prematurely in 1942 and taken to Couney's exhibit in Atlantic City, New Jersey. "Martin Couney was an incredible man. He should be famous for what he did. He saved thousands of us," she says. She still has the identity necklace made of pink beads, with her name in white beads, which she was given in the incubator facility.
"Nobody else was offering to do anything to save me," says another of the babies, Beth Allen, who was born three months premature in Brooklyn in 1941. When a physician suggested her parents take her to Coney Island, her mother refused, insisting her daughter wasn't "a freak". Couney came to the hospital and persuaded her parents to let him care for her. Every Father's Day, her parents took her to see Couney. When he died, in 1950, they attended his funeral. "Without Martin Couney I wouldn't have had a life," she says.
Today it would be considered unethical to exhibit premature babies and charge fairgoers to see them, notes Dr Richard Schanler, director of Neonatal Services at Cohen Children's Medical Center of New York and Northwell Health. "But you have to think back to that time," he says.
"Nowadays when new technology comes out we do randomised controlled trials. They didn't do those back then so the shows were a way of demonstrating the benefit of using incubators… We owe a lot to Couney and the work he was doing."
I have to admit, this is the first I have heard about Couney but I was so impressed by his devotion to his work and his astounding success in a time when premature babies were allowed to die and were offered no life support or medical assistance. What an amazing man.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Maxy sez : Who Should Make Up Your Diabetes-Management Team?

Your primary-care physician, endocrinologist, podiatrist, eye doctor, and dentist should be on your diabetes-management team. In addition, you should find a certified diabetes educator who can teach you about nutrition and care specific to diabetes.
Which specialists should be a part of your diabetes-management team?

Ping H. Wang, MD: Patients can manage their diabetes with a team that includes a physician, a diabetes educator, and a dietitian. The following specialists can also be part of a patient's management team: endocrinologist (hormone system), podiatrist (feet), optometrist/ophthalmologist (eyes), and dentist. Patients with long-term diabetes or complications may require the care of one or more of the following specialists: neurologist (diabetic neuropathy), nephrologist (kidneys), or other specialists. Controlling blood sugar, blood pressure, and lipid levels is proven to delay or thwart complications altogether.

Melissa Meredith, MD (with assistance from Barb Uselman, RN/CDE, and Carol Sargent, RD/CDE) : Diabetes is a chronic and potentially complicated disease that is best cared for by a team approach. The typical core members of the team are: the primary care provider and staff, certified diabetes educator (CDE), registered dietitian (RD), pharmacist and most importantly, the patient. Other members may be needed for some patients including: endocrinologist (for type 1 diabetes and complicated type 2 diabetes), ophthalmologist (for yearly eye exams), kidney specialist, cardiologist, neurologist, and/or mental health worker.
A diabetes doctor (endocrinologist) to assess and prescribe the best medicines for you

A certified diabetes educator to help you understand the best way to self-manage your condition (this includes a registered nurse, registered dietitian, licensed clinical social worker, pharmacist, or an exercise physiologist)

A primary-care physician for ongoing prevention and treatment of related conditions

An eye doctor (ophthalmologist or optometrist) for your yearly eye exams

A dentist for your twice-yearly cleaning

A foot doctor (podiatrist) to prevent or treat foot problems

Gretchen Scalpi, RD, CDE: Your team should consist of an endocrinologist or primary-care physician, certified diabetes educator (a registered dietitian or nurse), podiatrist, ophthalmologist, dentist, and any other specialist that a team member suggests for conditions related to your diabetes

Friday, May 20, 2016

Breakfast comfort food...Lip Smacking egg and hash brown casserole

Cindy's Breakfast Casserole
It is worth the cooking time to present this dish with hot biscuits or toast triangles to a hungry family. We use it on special occasions and when we have guests


  cooking spray
1 (12 ounce) package bacon
1 teaspoon butter, or as desired
1 (20 ounce) package frozen cubed hash brown potatoes
salt and ground black pepper to taste
1 (12 ounce) package sliced fresh mushrooms
3 green onions, minced
2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese, divided
10 eggs ( I sometimes use equivalent amount of egg beaters - Read package)
2 cups milk
1 teaspoon salt
8 or more grape tomatoes  (optional)               

  1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Spray a 9x13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Arrange bacon slices in a single layer on a baking sheet.
  2. Bake in the preheated oven until browned and crisp, 20 to 25 minutes. Drain bacon slices on paper towels and transfer 1 to 2 tablespoons bacon grease to a skillet, reserving the remaining bacon grease. Add butter to skillet.
  3. Cook and stir potatoes in the hot bacon grease-butter until lightly browned, about 10 minutes; season with salt and black pepper. Transfer potatoes to the prepared baking dish.
  4. Heat about 1 tablespoon reserved bacon grease in the skillet over medium heat; cook and stir mushrooms until softened, 5 to 10 minutes. Layer mushrooms over potatoes.
  5. Place green onions in a layer over mushrooms. Crumble bacon over green onion layer; top with 1 cup Cheddar cheese.
  6. Blend eggs, milk, and 1 teaspoon salt in a blender until smooth; pour over Cheddar cheese layer. Add remaining 1 cup Cheddar cheese.
  7. Bake in the preheated oven until casserole is set and a knife inserted in the middle comes out clean, 30 to 40 minutes. You can garnish with halved grape tomatoes, cut side down which have been warmed in oven for a few minutes or microwaved for a few seconds.

  •  Note:
  • You can use Eggbeaters and pre-cooked bacon. Any variety of cheese can be substituted for the Cheddar cheese

Is this Beautiful or Offensive ?

Thomas in the shower with his son Fox

This photograph of a father holding his son in the shower has been shared tens of thousands of times on Facebook in the last two weeks. But over the same period it's also also been taken down by the social media platform more than once before ultimately being reinstated each time. Why?
In some ways the picture appears to show a fairly everyday scene. A dad cradling his severely sick child in his arms. Except in this instance, they are in the shower and both naked. The picture was posted on social media by the photographer Heather Whitten who lives in Arizona in the US. It shows her son Fox and her husband, the boy's father Thomas Whitten.
For many viewers the image is a touching portrait of parental care and affection. The reason that father and son were naked was because Fox had Salmonella poisoning for which he would soon after be hospitalized.
"Thomas had spent hours in the shower with him, trying to keep his fever down and letting the vomit and diarrhea rinse off of them both as it came," Whitten wrote in her post accompanying the photo.
"He was so patient and so loving and so strong with our tiny son in his lap... I stepped out and grabbed my camera and came back to snap a few images of it and, of course shared them."
But for some people the image is inappropriate at best and at worst has undertones of paedophilia. Whitten has been surprised by this reaction and was shocked when people posted negative comments about what was for her a beautiful moment.
"There is nothing sexual or exploitative about this image," she wrote in the initial post. "I was taken aback by how many people missed the story or didn't even look past the nudity to find the story."
Controversy about whether images of naked children are acceptable is not new.
In 2001, artist Tierney Gearon's exhibition featuring photos of her naked children at the Saatchi Gallery sparked a protest. She later admitted being "completely taken aback" by the reaction to the photos which she described as "kids in masks doing a silly pose".
In photos where a child appears naked with an adult there are additional complications and there may be evidence of something of a double standard. A nude man may appear more sinister to some than a woman without clothes.
For example:
Last month, an Australian woman Kelli Bannister posted a photograph - in a similar pose to Whitten's photo - cradling her daughter Summer. It was taken by her five-year-old son on a mobile phone. The reaction to that image was overwhelmingly positive.

Kelli Bannister holding her daughter in the shower

Whitten said she has been "blown away" by the response to her image, which was actually taken in November 2014. "I wasn't prepared at all," she says. "I was very intimidated by it."
"A disgusting lack of boundaries," posted one person who protested the photo's content.
Whitten says, "people shouldn't be able to dictate what is right or wrong for other people".
She says some people also contacted her saying it triggered memories of their past abuse, something she had not even considered when posting the picture.
But the majority of the comments have been positive. "All I see is a loving caring dad comforting his sick child," reads one. "This is a beautiful image," says another.
Despite this, Whitten says the picture has been removed a number of times since being posted on Facebook at the start of May.
A spokeswoman for Facebook confirmed that the picture had been taken down but has been reinstated.
Whitten used the hashtag #standupstripdown which empowers photographers to take a stand against social network sites banning photos and the damage that can be done by that, especially for professionals.
Whitten is adamant that the image captures something honest and human. "For me it's just such a positive image and my hope is that it's a normalizing image, normalizing family nudity," she says.
Some, judgemental, sententious, censorious people have nothing better to do, I guess, than sully natural beauty with the dirt in their own minds.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Bryan Bautista - Semi-finalist on The Voice

Christina sang it better but this guy has charisma and sex appeal oozing out of him.
He is not the best  voice among the semi-finalists but he has that elusive star quality.
 I also like Laith Al-Saadi and Alisan Porter. Have you got a favorite??

Snack Pack Pudding pops.... Getting ready for hot lazy summer days

Red, white, and blue pudding pop recipe using Snack Packs from

Pink, white, and blue pudding pops are so simple to make, and the kids loved them.
To make the pudding pops, I used strawberry Snack Packs, vanilla Snack Packs, and vanilla Snack Packs that I dyed blue with gel food coloring. The Super Snack Packs that are only available at Walmart are perfect because they give you more in each cup.
You could also use chocolate, vanilla, and strawberry as a combo and forget food
coloring. The great thing about these is that the kids can have fun making them.

All you have to do is spoon a layer of each color into a small dixie cup (I used 5 ounce cups) and then once you have all of your layers, put a popsicle stick or ice cream spoon in the top and freeze.
Once they are frozen solid, just tear the cups off of the pudding pops and enjoy. my grandkids thought they were awesome.....nice and cold and they fill that mid afternoon hollow tummy feeling.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Maxy sez : Diabetes and Heart Disease Risks You Shouldn’t Ignore

 By Athena Philis-Tsimikas, M.D.
Let’s have a heart-to-heart talk about diabetes and cardiovascular health. If you have diabetes, you have an increased risk of serious problems such as heart disease, heart failure or stroke — at least twice the risk of someone without diabetes. Moreover, you are also more likely to develop these problems at a younger than average age, and have more serious heart attacks.

According to the American Diabetes Association, two out of three people with diabetes die from heart disease or stroke.

Here’s one reason why: Diabetes is characterized by chronically high blood glucose levels. Over time, these elevated levels can cause fatty deposits called plaque to build up along the walls of your blood vessels, a condition known as coronary heart disease. As the plaque becomes thicker, the blood vessels become harder and narrower, making it difficult for blood to flow freely to the heart and damaging the heart muscle.

Diabetes can also raise the risk of blood clots, which can cause stroke. Stroke happens when the flow of blood to the brain is blocked, depriving brain cells of the oxygen they need to survive.

Diabetes also makes people more vulnerable to heart failure, which impedes the heart’s ability to pump blood efficiently to the rest of the body and can cause shortness of breath and an irregular heartbeat.

More Risk Factors: High Cholesterol, High Blood Pressure, Obesity :
In addition to diabetes itself, people with diabetes are more likely to have other health problems that raise the risk of cardiovascular problems, such as obesity, high blood pressure, or unhealthy cholesterol levels. Obesity and high blood pressure force your heart to work harder than normal to pump blood through your body, which increases your chances of having a heart attack or stroke.

Often, people with diabetes have too much “bad” LDL cholesterol and not enough “good” HDL cholesterol, as well as high levels of blood fats called triglycerides. In people with diabetes, this combination is known as diabetic dyslipidemia and can contribute to coronary heart disease and stroke.

Estrogen helps protect women from heart disease, so women who have not gone through menopause have a lower risk of heart disease than men of the same age. However, diabetes removes this protection — women who have diabetes have an increased risk regardless of age.

You don’t necessarily need to have full-blown diabetes to have a higher risk of cardiovascular problems. Even having prediabetes — blood glucose levels that are higher than normal, but not yet high enough to qualify as diabetes — can raise your risk.

Take These Steps Today to Protect Your Heart :
Having diabetes doesn’t mean a heart attack or stroke is inevitable. You can reduce your risk by taking the same preventive actions recommended for anyone who wants to keep their heart healthy. Eat a heart-smart diet that is high in soluble fiber and low in saturated fat and trans fats. Get at least 30 minutes of cardiovascular exercise most days of the week, and maintain a healthy weight. In addition to benefiting your heart, losing weight can prevent or delay the onset of type 2 diabetes, and may even reverse it.

Talk to your physician or diabetes educator about specific actions you can take to help protect your heart and reduce your risk.

Athena Philis-Tsimikas, M.D., is an endocrinologist and the Corporate Vice President for the Scripps Whittier Diabetes Institute at Scripps Health in San Diego.

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Food for Thought : Herbs bring out the flavor

Looking to add a little flavor without a lot of calories or sodium? Add some fresh herbs and spices. Herbs can boost the flavor to your favorite dishes without adding salt and many herbs contain disease-fighting antioxidants.Here are some tips:
   Basil is one of the most popular culinary herbs. Sweet basil is used in salads, sandwiches and soups. Try a simple summer salad made with sliced tomatoes, mozzarella cheese, basil and olive oil, or add basil to tomato soup for a light meal.
   Mint is a very versatile herb and can be used in both sweet and savory dishes. It is often used in fruit and vegetable salads. You can also try adding mint to ice cream, tea, peas, carrots or meats.
   Rosemary is one of the most aromatic herbs you can find. It has a very distinct lemon-pine flavor and pairs well with many foods. Try rosemary with summer vegetables such as zucchini and squash, as an addition to tomato sauce or pizza, and in marinades for chicken and beef.
   Cilantro is an herb that is typically used in Mexican, Latin America, Asian and Indian cuisines. It is best served fresh by adding to a dish just before serving. It makes a great addition to your favorite salsa. It also works very well with other dishes such as summer salads, fruit salads and sweet potatoes.
Herb Garden Salad :
Fresh herbs make this salad an ideal light meal or side.
6 cups sliced thin romaine
1 cup sliced thin radicchio
1 tablespoon fresh parsley, chopped
2/3 cup fresh basil, sliced thin
1/2 cup matchstick carrots
1/2 cup diced english cucumber
2/3 cup grape tomatoes, quartered
1 (15 ounce) can artichoke heart quarters
1 small diced avocado
1/2 cup pearl sized mozzarella balls
salt and pepper, to taste
garlic vinaigrette salad dressing  [recipe below]

Toss together the romaine lettuce, radicchio, basil, carrots, and cucumber. Place on a serving platter or salad bowl.
Top the salad with tomatoes, artichoke heart quarters, avocado, and mozzarella balls. Season, if desired, with salt and pepper. Serve with a white balsamic salad dressing, or if unavailable use your favorite homemade vinaigrette.

Green salads don't have to be boring. 
My daughter like to add fresh chopped herbs to the lettuce to add extra flavor and dimension to the dish like in this recipe for Herbed Garden Salad. Adding lots of vegetables and colors makes the salad more appealing too.
Not only are colorful salads more interesting and flavorful, they are healthier as well. It has been recommended that we eat a "rainbow of fruits and vegetables" each day and this salad definitely helps meet those requirements: red tomatoes, orange carrots, green lettuce, herbs and avocado, and purple radicchio. If you want to squeeze yellow in there too, divide the tomatoes up and use some yellow pear tomatoes as well. Those are great!
                                                                     Garlic Vinaigrette :
1 tablespoon chopped serrano chile
3/4 teaspoon salt
6 garlic cloves, crushed
3 tablespoons red wine vinegar
2 tablespoons water
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 1/2 tablespoons anchovy paste

Combine first 3 ingredients in a mortar; mash to a paste with a pestle. Combine garlic paste mixture, vinegar, and remaining ingredients in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk.

TIP: Store vinaigrette in refrigerator for up to 1 week.

A proud grand-poppa               G .

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

That’s Hard To Swallow - Human And Rat DNA Found in Burgers

What is in your burger?

Ever wondered what ingredients go into your burger?  You probably won’t want to ever again after you discover the results of an American study which found human and rat DNA lurking in some burgers.
A sample test of 258 burgers from various - unnamed - fast food chains came up with some surprising and horrifying results. The study, by food testing company Clear Labs found three burgers with rat DNA and one with traces of human.

‘The most likely cause is hair, skin, or fingernail that was accidentally mixed in during the manufacturing process,’ read the study, referring to the human DNA result. For good measure, meat was also found in two vegetarian burgers. 

Almost 80 different types of burger brands were tested

The study also found that meat was mixed up for the burgers in the States, so someone ordering a beef burger might find themselves also eating chicken or turkey.

The burgers tested came from 79 different brands, but they were not named by Clear Labs. I think we can guess the major fast food outlets they tested. And this gives us another good reason to cut down or cut out fast matter how convenient it is.
What are we putting in our kids mouths?

Against all odds , Quintuplets successfully delivered in Australia

Kim Tucci named her quintuplets Keith, Ali, Penelope, Tiffany and Beatrix

An Australian mother who gave birth to quintuplets in January has released a photo shoot of her unlikely new arrivals.
Perth resident Kim Tucci, 26, took just two minutes to give birth to her four daughters and one son, who were conceived naturally. A team of 50 doctors and nurses assisted with the planned caesarean and all of the children were born healthy. The chance of conceiving quintuplets naturally is about one in 55 million.
Mrs Tucci's story gained prominence through her Facebook page, Surprised by Five, where she recorded the details of her pregnancy.
Local business, Erin Elizabeth Photography, which helped document Mrs Tucci's pregnancy, organized the quintuplets' photo shoot.

The family says they change about 350 diapers per week

"50 fingers 50 toes, 6 hearts beating at once. My body fought the toughest of battles to get five babies here safely," Mrs Tucci, 26, wrote when she posted the photos.
"Everything I did I did for them."

In an interview with Australian current affairs program 60 Minutes in April, Mrs Tucci said she felt like her body was "shutting down" during the pregnancy.
She said that doctors originally offered her the choice of saving two of the babies while terminating the others, due to serious health risks to both her and the unborn children.
"No-one thought I could do it, and I did, I showed everyone in my life," Mrs Tucci told 60 Minutes.

Mrs Tucci gained a following after sharing details of her pregnancy on Facebook

Mrs Tucci and her husband Vaughn already have a nine-year-old son and daughters aged two and four.
The Tuccis are attempting to raise money for a van that is big enough to fit their entire family.

Monday, May 9, 2016

Inspirational message to a dear friend

You know who you are, B

Dear Mom

 My grandsons sent this video to their mom
on Mother's Day, being men of few words, themselves.

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Bad Lip Reading

I found this funny. The creator of these videos kind of viewed all the candidates as clowns. He was not impressed with any of them. So he took some film footage, turned the sound down and dubbed his voice over their lip movements. Gosh knows what they were really saying, but I am sure it was nothing like his lip reading interpretation.

Keep Laughing, You'll Feel better.

Just one of those days