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Top Eight Ways To Boost Your Energy

 

It is that time of year when there is too much to do and not enough time to get it done.

Actually, anytime of year the energy sappers whittle away at us. Yet this is especially true during the Christmas-Holiday season.

So today I have rounded up some of the best and most fun time-tested ways to give your energy a boost so that you can enjoy this beautiful season to the fullest.

1.  Eat a high protein breakfast. Give your body enough fuel and energy to start the day.

2. Don’t skimp on calories. We often feel lethargic simply because our bodies are low on fuel. Not getting enough calories depresses your metabolism causing you to feel sleepy.

3. Snack. It is OK to snack between meals. But be sure to choose the right kinds of snacks such as peanut butter, fruits and berries, and nuts.

Caveat: On all three of these suggestions remember Roberta’s Rules Number 1, Number 2, and Number 3: Eat in moderation. Eat in moderation. Eat in moderation. When you first start to feel full, stop eating. It takes 20 minutes for the stomach to send the signal to the brain that you are full. Anything eaten after that first full feeling can easily lead to weight gain.

4. Web MD suggests sucking on a cinnamon stick. They tell us that research shows just smelling cinnamon is a natural energy booster.

5. After eating this is my favorite way to boost my energy level: let the sunshine in! Sun boosts your energy level naturally.

The shortened period of daylight during the winter months often makes this difficult to do. If you suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and can afford it get one of those full spectrum lights to help you out. There are some very low cost ones these days. So check it out. I use one and it works.

A brief story here.  About twenty years ago, I think in 1994 or 1995, Columbus,Ohio had a long, very long period of days without any sun light. We had several snow storms back to back and constant snow and cloud cover for about six straight weeks. And I mean NO sunshine. None at all. Citizens all over the area were depressed from the lack of sun.

The first day of sunlight was cause for a front page news story. Everyone was walking on cloud nine, so to speak.

The newspaper article quoted one of the county parks and wildlife specialists. She said that they feared that one of our falcons had died during the siege due to the cold and snow cover as no small rodents were available for the falcon to eat.  She feared he had died of cold and starvation.

BUT…..that first day of sun after six weeks without, she spotted the falcon high in the blue sky just soaring with its wings fully outstretched for over thirty minutes soaking in the sunlight.  Guess even animals miss and need sunlight too.

6. Emotions are contagious. So keep your up-beat friends closer during winter days. They are a natural energy booster. Watch happy TV shows and movies too. Laughter is also a natural energy booster.

7. Take a 5-10 minute walk. The brisk air and being outside can super charge your energy too. Or take the stairs at work. Get that oxygen moving throughout your body as a super charger.

8. Sing. Sing. Sing. Turn on the radio or listen to music on your i-pod. And sing along. Web MD says that singing reduces the levels of stress hormones in your body giving you a natural high.

And don’t worry about not being  a good singer.  I can only sing in three keys: Off. Off-ful. And God off-ful. Take your pick. I figure if God gave me lousy vocal chords I’ll give them right back to her as loud as I can.

Have yourself a merry little energy filled holiday season.
Featured Recipe       Wacky Cake

Hallelujah and the saints be praised!!!  It’s a miracle!!  After telling you all I do not bake, I am baking a cake today.                                        

I first heard of this cake last year when a friend gave me some old cooking pamphlets’/books published by the UpperArlington, Ohio Public Library as a Christmas gift. She found them in an antique shop. Antique shops are a great place to find unusual and often inexpensive Christmas gifts. Seems it was a yearly tradition that the library gave away these little cookbooks made up of favorite recipes from the staff for many years.

These inexpensive little pamphlets were the best gift I received last year. They are a treasure trove of great recipes!  I found this cake recipe in the 1999 edition of these little books.

I did a bit of research and discovered Wacky Cakes were very popular during the two world wars and during the Great Depression because of shortages, rationing, and/or the expense of ingredients likes eggs, butter, and sugar. They may also have been baked in by gone eras when such ingredients were not readily available or when refrigeration was not taken for granted as much as it is today.

It is the vinegar and the baking soda that does the magic. It acts as a leavening agent, which just means these ingredients inject gas bubbles into the dough to make them light and airy and thus causes the batter to rise. It is a chemical reaction. If you want to know more about that aspect of the cake click the following link, leavening agent. Personally, I prefer not to know. It is more magical that way.

My cake today looks darker than most cakes because I used a special dark brand of cocoa for the richer flavor. In the photos below it looks almost black. The actual cake does not look black. It is just the pictures. However, if you use regular cocoa the cake will not be that dark.

The cake HAS to be prepared in its baking pan; otherwise it doesn’t rise nearly as well according to Cook’s Country.

I also love this recipe because of how quick and easy it is. You also do not have to get out a big mixer and that makes clean up so much easier and faster ~ more time to enjoy cake!

Today’s recipe is dedicated to my very good friend, Chef Felisha, who has disappeared from Twitter, and who I miss very much. Chef Felisha always used to greet her friends on Wednesdays with “Wacky Wednesday Greetings.” I thought of her when I first saw the title of this cake. From here on out I will call this cake, ‘Chef Felisha Cake.’

This is what you will need:

2 cups flour*

2 cups sugar

6 tablespoons cocoa powder

2 teaspoons baking soda

1 teaspoon salt

2 cups warm water

2/3  cup oil

2 tablespoons vinegar

2 teaspoons vanilla **

A couple tablespoons powdered sugar for “icing”***

NOTES:

* Use 3 cups of flour if you want a dryer cake.

**Try experimenting with other flavors if you like, such as mint.

***Less expensive than any kind of icing.

Here is what you do:

Heat the oven to 350 degrees

Mix all dry ingredients, except the powdered sugar, until well blended. You can see what a boxed cake mix is really made of when you make this recipe. And when you see the cost for this cake you will marvel at how over priced cake mixes are.

Make three wells (or little holes) in the dry ingredients. Sorry. No picture. You can kind of see them in the next picture.

Add the wet ingredients  –  oil, vinegar, and vanilla – into the wells; one ingredient in one well. The oil will spill out and over the well since there is so much of it.

Then add the water and stir quickly to blend the batter well. While there is no batter sticking to the bottom of the bowl to lick, you can lick the left over batter off the spatula. Have to do that. Just have to! Riase your hand if you agree.  

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes.

Hot out of the oven.

Cool and then cake and dust with some powdered sugar; or use an icing of your choice.

You can also serve with a scoop of ice cream or with some whipped cream with raspberries and mint as pictured above. 

Bon appétit!!!

Cost

2 cups flour                           $0.92

2 cups sugar                          $0.89

6 tablespoons cocoa               $0.37

2 teaspoons baking soda         $0.03

1 teaspoon salt                      $0.04

2 cups warm water                $0.00

2/3  cup oil                            $0.45

2 tablespoons vinegar             $0.07

2 teaspoons vanilla                $0.12

Few tblspns powder sugar      $0.11

Total cost = $3.00
Cost per slice* = $0.20

*It depends on how big you cut each piece. It is possible to get 10-15 pieces from a 9×13 pan.

Quote of the Day

We make a living by what we get but we make a life by what we give.

Winston Churchill
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6 comments to Top Eight Ways To Boost Your Energy

  • We don’t have a problem with lack of sunlight down here right now. It’s light before 5am. I know because it says that on the news, not because I’m up to see it.

    My mother made a cake like this when I was young but I never got the recipe for it. I’m sure this is the same one and I’m eager to make it!

  • Virginia Urbach

    Hi Roberta, you have so much quick and easy recipes that are also inexpensive. Hooray! Keep them coming!

  • I think I could do this! Looks like it’d go well with coffee.

    • Roberta

      I bet you could too, Charles. I mean I did it…the ultimate no bake cook. LOL

      Yes, it would be great with a steaming hot cup of coffee….or how about hot chocolate?

  • What a whacky cake and I am so excited that you baked a cake!
    I love cinnamon sticks and they are great to suck on if you have any nausea as well as an energy kick. Great tips!