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How Do You Define Love?

 

1 kiss

 

Well, a group of professional people posed this question to a group of 4 to 8 year-olds, “What does love mean?”

The answers they got were broader and deeper than anyone could have imagined.

See what you think:

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“When my grandmother got arthritis, she couldn’t bend over and paint her toenails anymore. So my grandfather does it for her all the time, even when his hands got arthritis too. That’s love.”

Rebecca – age 8

When someone loves you, the way they say your name is different. You know that your name is safe in their mouth.”

Billy – age 4

“Love is when a girl puts on perfume and a boy puts on shaving cologne and they go out and smell each other.” Karl – age 5

“Love is when you go out to eat and give somebody most of your French fries without making them give you any of theirs.” Chrissy – age 6

“Love is what makes you smile when you’re tired.” Terri – age 4

1 fullestLove is when my mommy makes coffee for my daddy and she takes a sip before giving it to him, to make sure the taste is OK.” Danny – age 7

“Love is when you kiss all the time. Then when you get tired of kissing, you still want to be together and you talk more. My Mommy and Daddy are like that. They look gross when they kiss” Emily – age 8

“Love is what’s in the room with you at Christmas if you stop opening presents and listen,”

Bobby – age 7

“If you want to learn to love better, you should start with a friend who you hate,” Nikka – age 6

Love is when you tell a guy you like his shirt, then he wears it everyday.” Noelle – age 7

“Love is like a little old woman and a little old man who are still friends even after they know each other so well.” Tommy – age 6

“During my piano recital, I was on a stage and I was scared. I looked at all the people watching me and saw my daddy waving and smiling. He was the only one doing that. I wasn’t scared anymore.”

Cindy – age 8

“My mommy loves me more than anybody. You don’t see anyone else kissing me to sleep at night.”

Clare – age 6

1 school 2“Love is when Mommy gives Daddy the best piece of chicken.”    Elaine -age 5

“Love is when Mommy sees Daddy smelly and sweaty and still says he is handsomer than Robert Redford.”    Chris – age 7

“Love is when your puppy licks your face even after you left him alone all day.” Mary Ann – age 4

And last but not least:

Author and lecturer Leo Buscaglia once talked about a contest he was asked to judge. The purpose of the contest was to find the most caring child.

The winner was a four year old child whose next door neighbor was an elderly gentleman who had recently lost his wife. Upon seeing the man cry, the little boy went into the old gentleman’s yard, climbed onto his lap, and just sat there.

When his Mother asked him what he had said to the neighbor, the little boy said, “Nothing, I just helped him cry.”

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Featured Recipe           Asparagus and Prosciutto in Butter Sauce Spaghetti

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This recipe is not for the feint of heart. Nor is it a recipe for those of you who count every calorie like a miser counting his every penny. This recipe Is not for you if you are afraid of real butter either or garlic.

I use 4 cloves of garlic in this dish.

And if you use margarine in this recipe, ‘shame on you.’ This dish will taste like Plaster of Paris.’ And don’t blame me for that. I have warned you. You MUST use butter in this recipe or why even make it at all!

I love butter. No. I adore butter.

I love garlic too!

Put the two together and I am in heaven.

Start adding some prosciutto and I could sing an aria.

But to keep the food police at bay I do add some asparagus.

This recipe is perfect for everyday family fare, yet is delicious and pretty enough for company too!

This is what you will need for 4 people:

16 ounces thin spaghetti

6 tablespoons butter*

3-4 cloves garlic

1 -2 shallots

4 ounces prosciutto

20 or so stalks asparagus

Parmesan cheese to taste

Salt and pepper to taste

*Butter. Real butter. Do NOT substitute margarine.

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Here is what you do:

Put water up to boil.

Slice the prosciutto into thin strips.

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Wash, cut off the tough bottom ends, and cut about 2 inches off the top of the asparagus. Save the unused parts for soup.

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Press the cloves of garlic. Chop the shallots.

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When the water is ready, cook the pasta according to package directions.

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For the last minute or two add the sliced asparagus to the pot of pasta.

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Drain and place the spaghetti and asparagus into a bowl. Partially cover with some foil to keep pasta and asparagus warm.

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Now over low heat melt the butter.

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Add the garlic and let simmer 3-5 minutes, stirring once in a while, or when you can smell the garlic.

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Then add the shallots and cook a few minutes.

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Salt and pepper the spaghetti and asparagus to taste. I do not use too much salt since the prosciutto will add salt to the dish too.

Then pour the melted butter sauce over the spaghetti and asparagus and gently mix it all together.

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Sprinkle the prosciutto on top and mix into the spaghetti.

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Sprinkle with some of the Parmesan cheese.

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Serve with garlic bread and a salad.

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Bon appétit!!!
Cost

16 ounces thin spaghetti      $1.29

6 tablespoons butter           $0.68

3-4 cloves garlic                 $0.16

1 -2 shallots                       $0.45

4 ounces prosciutto            $5.99

10 or so stalks asparagus      $2.98

Parmesan cheese to taste      $0.47

Salt and pepper to taste

Total cost = $12.02
Cost per person = $3.01

Quote of the Day
We worry about what a child will become tomorrow, yet we forget that he is someone today.
Stacia Tauscher
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Great Balls of Fire

Copy of fire

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The sun is about 93 million miles from earth.

The sun is the closest star to earth.

The sun is a ball of gas that gives earth heat and light.

The temperature of the sun is around 60000 Kelvin.

It takes about 8 minutes for the light and heat of the sun to reach earth.

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Now new research tells us that sunlight can help us lose weight.

Who would have ever guessed or thought?
The Sunshine Diet I call it!!!

From the Times of India:

LONDON: Bright sunlight – especially of the early morning variety — has been found to be a natural fat buster. Scientists at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago found that even 20 to 30 minutes of morning light is enough to affect a person’s body mass index (BMI), and that people who got most of their daily exposure to even moderately bright light in the morning had a significantly lower BMI than those who got their light exposure later in the day.

The influence of morning light exposure on body weight was independent of an individual’s physical activity levels, caloric intake, sleep timing, age or season. It accounted for about 20% of a person’s BMI.

“Light is the most potent agent to synchronize your internal body clock that regulates circadian rhythms, which in turn also regulates energy balance. The message is that you should get more bright light between 8am and noon,” the study’s senior author Phyllis C Zee said.

Only 20 Minutes a Day

The best part of all this you only need about 20 minutes of morning sun – and it does HAVE to be morning sun – to reap the benefits.

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Over at Women’s Health they tell us,

By nature, morning light is much stronger than afternoon or evening light. That’s because there’s a higher amount of blue light in the morning—and blue light is the kind that has the strongest effect on your circadian rhythm, say researchers.

And even better than all of the above Steth News tells us:

The result of the test was that those who were exposed to more light in the morning had lower Body mass Index (BMI) than those who received less light. Based on the study, age, calorie intake, and activities did not affect the result.

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Many people who suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, get the blues and sometimes gain weight in the cold dark days of winter because of a drop in serotonin in the brain due to a lack of sunlight. Livestrong.com weighs in that that is what may be in play with both S.A.D. and weight loss.

I wonder?

Could it be? There are crazier ideas out there. Right?

Was England’s Stonehenge really just a spa for women to lose weight?

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 Here Comes the Sun sung by George Harrison

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Featured Recipe    Breakfast Rice and Egg

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Of course with today’s post being about mornings I had to share a breakfast dish.

This is quick & easy and I like to eat it on my patio in late spring, early summer, or in fall. In other words, I like to be outside when it is not to hot and humid.

And only $0.78 per person!

I love to eat breakfast outside. Compared to most people I am an early riser. Not by choice. It is my natural rhythm. I generally just wake up between 6:30 a.m. to 7:00 a.m.

I like sitting on my patio early in the morning while it is still quiet and not many people are up and about. Just some time for me. I love watching the sun rise while sipping a cup of hot tea.

Watching the sun rise in all her beauty is a prayer.

The recipe I share today is perfect for morning sun watching, day dreaming, meditation or prayer kind of dish.

This makes a great lunch too!

And you will never, ever, EVER find as delicious and filling meal for less than $1.00 than this sweet little recipe!!!!!

This is what you will need for 1 person:

Some rice brown or white – left over is really nice

1 or 2 eggs

Soy sauce

Green onions

Spray oil if you are frying an egg

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Here is what you do:

You can use left over cooked rice or cook about one half a cup or so according to package directions. Instant is OK too.

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Just place your rice in a bowl. Sprinkle with a bit of Soy sauce.

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Fry or soft cook an egg to taste. Place it on top of the rice.

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Sprinkle the egg with a bit of Soy sauce.

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After washing slice the green onion on the diagonal and sprinkle over the egg and rice.

Sprinkle with some more Soy sauce.

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Recipe adapted from Livestrong.com ~

Bon appetite and peace

Cost

¼ cup brown rice       $0.14

1 egg                        $0.13

Soy sauce                  $0.26

Green onions             $0.10

Spray oil                   $0.15

Total cost for 1 = $0.78

Quote of the Day

I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day, a fresh try, one more start, with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning.

J. B. Priestley

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The Magic Envelope

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IMG_2735I met Sarah through my job as the Candy Lady. Two summers ago she was working at one of the real estate offices I deliver candy to. She was working that summer in order to save money to go to college. She decided to go to my Alma Mater, Wright State University.

She was always a delight. She has a ready smile and was very excited about going to a four year college.

When she went to school I did not seen her for a year and a half, but I did keep up with her via Facebook.

Recently she was posting how expensive her books were for the coming semester were. Almost broke her. Essentially did break the bank. I responded with some tips – all of which she had already done. *sigh*

Another day she posted on Facebook that she missed seeing my friendly smile, or words to that effect. I responded that she was so sweet to say that. A few minutes later I sent another Facebook comment stating I did not live that far away and maybe we could get together for lunch some day.

She took me up on it.

So last Saturday I drove to Yellow Springs, Ohio, to have lunch with my friend, Sarah.

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We had a delightful time. The food was outstanding as was the conversation. We talked about her major – finance – and what she wanted to do when she graduated – work in a finance division of a real estate office.

We talked about the way too high cost of a college education these days. We talked about our mothers and our dads, men, and the weather too.

 

This brings me to another story about my father.

I don’t know why I did not think about or remember the story below about my father during lunch. I remembered it about two miles from the restaurant on my drive home.

My brain works in strange ways when it works at all.

A Tribute To My Father

When I got my first job after graduating high school my father began collecting what he called ‘room and board’ for as long as I lived at home. Since I did not have enough money to get an apartment I lived at home and paid $15 a week for living there. My two brothers had to do the same.

zmoneyLiving at home was fine with me. I was saving my money to go to college anyway. My parent’s home was the cheapest place to live.

Almost seems like an alien world to say that these days since parents take on massive debt to send their children to college today. But that was not yet the norm in the 1960’s.

This did not offend me at the time and it still does not. I believe it is a good lesson for an eighteen old to learn that life is not free and that you have to pay for somewhere to live and something to eat.

I had a job in my junior and senior years in high school working as a page at the library. Making no more than $0.95 an hour I still managed to save $500. I added that to what I was making at the grocery store, which was a good paying job in the sixties, and in two years I had saved an additional $2000.

I took my $2500 and bought a used 1955 Chevy for $500. Then in August 1966 I registered for college at Wright State University. At that time I had enough money to finish college.

However, I had not figured in the high cost of books and the increases in tuition over the three years it took me to get my B.S. in Education.

After two years of school my savings was very low and I thought I would have to go back to work and temporarily ‘drop out’ of college. I could not have worked and gone to college at same time. I would not have had enough study time. I am a slow learner and need time to study. Lots of time.

I mentioned this to my dad. My dad was a quiet man and he did not say much. I can’t remember whether he said anything or not regarding my financial situation.

thAbout two weeks later my dad handed me an envelope.

Inside it was $1500 cash. He told me that he had saved my “room and board” payments for a time when I might need the money. He told me he did not want me to drop out of school but to go on and finish my senior year without interruption.

When my older brother needed a bit more cash to make a down payment on his first home, as if by magic an envelope containing $3000 appeared.

After several years on the Atlanta Fire Department, my brother decided to get a degree in Fire Science and once again an envelope appeared to help pay for school.

Years later I figured up how much I’d actually given my dad for ‘room and board.’

The amount in the envelope was more than double what I had paid my dad for room and board.

“Sometimes the poorest man leaves his children the richest inheritance.”
Ruth E. Renke
If you want to read another heart-warming story about my father click on the following link: Memories of My Father.

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Featured Recipe        Gourmet Hash

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This recipe was inspired by Facebook. Someone posted a picture and name of a recipe but did not say where the recipe came from. But a quick ‘Bing’ search brought up the source right away – The Midnight Baker.

The main thing I did not like with this recipe is that the steak was oven baked with the potatoes for 40-45 minutes. I was afraid that the steak would get all dry and tough being cooked that long, even at a low heat.

You see,  I like my steaks rare to medium rare. So I decided to pan fry my steak and then cut it up and add to the roasted potatoes.

I also found the potatoes in that recipe to be a bit bland. So I added some shallots for contrast. I also use fresh garlic cloves instead of powder.

If you have never eaten roasted shallots you have been missing one of life’s most delicious tastes!

So when I added all of these other wonderful things, of course, I had to rename the recipe. So I call this  Gourmet Hash.

This recipe can be doubled and tripled.

This is what you will need for two people:

1 medium to large (about 10 ounces) rib eye or your fave steak – I used a NY Strip

1 large Yukon gold potato (2 medium)

1 large red skin potato (2 medium)

1 medium onion

6 or more large shallots – get the biggest you can find

3 or more whole cloves garlic

3-4 tablespoons olive oil

Couple of sprigs of parsley

Salt and pepper to taste

Optional Steak seasoning of your choice – I used Montreal Steak Seasoning

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Here is what you do:

Heat the oven to 350 F degrees.

Wash the potatoes and cut into medium pieces. No need to peel them.

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Toss the potato pieces into an oven proof pan.

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Peel the onion and cut into slices.

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Toss them into the pan with the potatoes.

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Peel the shallots and garlic and add them to the pan too.

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NOTE: To keep the shallots from falling apart while they bake keep the root on the end.

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Sprinkle on the salt and pepper.

Sprinkle the oil – eyeball it. I never measure for this recipe. – over the vegetables…….

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…………and using your fingers toss to coat.

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Place in the oven and roast for 30 to 45 minutes. Using a tooth pick test the doneness every 15-20 minutes till done to your taste, adding a bit more oil if necessary.

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After20 minutes. Soft, but not cooked through.

After20 minutes. Soft, but not cooked through.

NOTE: Also test the doneness of the shallots if they are big.

While the veggies are roasting you can sit down and rest with your favorite glass of wine. “Cheers.”

NOTE: If you want crisp potatoes turn the oven to 500 degrees F for the last 5 minutes.

Salt and pepper the steak; and/or use your fave steak seasoning. I used both salt and pepper and a very light sprinkling of Montreal Steak Seasoning for taste.

Ten minutes before the potatoes are done fry the steak to your desired doneness.

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Pan fried steak guide

When done, remove steak from the pan and tent with foil and let sit about five minutes to allow the juices to redistribute.

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Remove the potatoes from the oven and let sit a few minutes. Done to perfection!

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Wash and chop the parsley.

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Cut the steak into cubes.

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Place a large spoonful of potatoes on a plate and add half the cubed steak on top of the potatoes. Sprinkle with some of the parsley.

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Serve with a salad.

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Bon appétit!!!
Cost

1 medium NY Strip               $8.25

1 large Yukon gold potato      $0.60

2 medium red skin potato      $0.61

1 medium onion                   $0.32

6 or more large shallots        $1.73

3 whole cloves garlic            $0.10

3-4 tablespoons olive oil        $0.64

Couple of sprigs of parsley     $0.12

Salt and pepper to taste

Montreal Steak Seasoning      $0.27

Total cost = $     $12.64
Cost per person = $6.32

Quote of the Day

He didn’t tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it.

Clarence Budington Kelland

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