My Daily Spark Quote

Thursday, December 11, 2008

More fun ideas from the folks at Sparkpeople.

I didn't know where I should post this, under the inexpensive Christmas gift ideas or under the healthy eating and fitness blog I have. I decided to share it here, as I love making my own Christmas gifts. I will make a few of these this year too. You can also use corn in your bags, (NOT "POP" CORN)I find a lot of my tips and information, from my favorite site these days,

Just for your own information, if you are looking for a quick ice pack, grap a bag of frozen peas. They work great!

By: Stepfanie Romine : 12/11/2008 9:06:23 AM : 34 comments

I've written about the miracles of the rice sock.

This handy low-tech gadget eased an excruciating sinus headache I had a few weeks back. Since I made mine, it had soothed sore knees after yoga, loosened a tight lower back and even warmed cold feet as I typed in my home office.

Have a friend who constantly battles aches and pains? Make one of these as a holiday gift!

Buy a new sock or, if you're especially handy, sew a long, thin tube for your rice sock. These rice socks come in handy, and they're an easy craft for kids. Make sure you use a new, clean sock if you're giving this as a gift. (If you want to get really fancy, buy a kit or use fabric scraps to sew a long sleeve for your rice sock.)

1 large (new) sock
1-2 pounds rice (any kind; the amount with vary based on the size of your sock)
Needle and thread

Fill sock with rice, then sew the top shut or use a ribbon to tightly tie the sock closed. (Make sure you explain to the recipient that they put it in the microwave until it's hot, then place it on the aching body part.)

Bonus: Add a few drops of essential oil to the rice to create an aromatherapy sock.

Make your own gift cup

Find one of those big holiday cups at the dollar store. Fill it with hot cocoa mix, a small gift bag of your favorite flavored Coffee or tea, add a couple of these Ginger Spice Biscotti (recipe follows). Wrap with some colorful celafane, and tie with a pretty holiday ribbon.
I like this idea so much I am going to make some myself.

Ginger Spice Biscotti
Found this recipe on Spark People today


Canola oil spray
1 1/4 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour
1 cup whole-wheat flour or whole-wheat pastry flour
4 tsp. ground ginger
1 tsp. cinnamon
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/4 tsp. allspice
1/4 tsp. salt
2 large eggs
1/3 cup canola oil
1/4 cup unsweented apple butter or applesauce
1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup dried cranberries, chopped dried pineapple or other dried fruit

Nutritional Info

Fat: 2.5g
Carbohydrates: 10.3g
Protein: 1.2g

1. reheat oven to 325 degrees. Spray large cookie sheet with canola oil spray and set aside.

2. In medium bowl, mix next 7 ingredients and set aside. Using electric mixer or food processor, combine eggs with oil and apple butter for 10 seconds. Add sugar and blend for 30 more seconds. Add half of dry mixture and process until smooth. Add remaining dry mixture and process until a soft and sticky dough forms. Transfer dough to a large bowl; fold in dried fruit. Divide dough in half and place on either end of cookie sheet.

3. With damp hands, form each piece of dough into a log 3 inches wide and about 3/4-inch high. Bake 25-30 minutes, or until firm to the touch. Logs will spread durig baking. Remove from oven and cool 10 minutes. With serrated knife, slice each log into 1/2-ich cookies, cutting on a diagonal. Bake 10 minutes.

4. Turn each cookie over and bake 10 more minutes. Turn oven off and leave biscotti in oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and cool on wire rack. Store at room temperature.

Makes 40 servings.

The American Institute for Cancer Research (AICR) is the cancer charity that fosters research on diet and cancer and educates the public about the results.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Another inexpensive gift idea form Spark People

Healthy, Homemade Gifts: Hearty Gourmet Oatmeal
By: Stepfanie Romine : 12/9/2008 2:59:01 PM : 70 comments

In the middle of winter, when the mercury's dropping and the snow is piling up outside, is there anything more comforting than a bowl of oatmeal?

Judging from your answers last week, most of you agree with me. Plain old oatmeal becomes a tedious breakfast rather quickly, but the fancy flavored versions are pricey and full of artificial flavors.

Thankfully, making your own gourmet oatmeal is easy. Flavored oatmeal makes a great gift for the busy professional, a time-strapped mom or anyone who says there's no time for a healthy breakfast.

Stepfanie's Oatmeal Mix
6 cups old-fashioned or steel-cut oats
3/4 c ground flax seeds
3 T cinnamon
1 1/2 cups walnuts, chopped
1 1/2 cups dried cranberries
Mix all ingredients together. Makes 12 servings (about 3/4 cup each)
Store in the refrigerator as flax seeds and walnuts can spoil quickly.

Nutrition info
Number of Servings: 12
Calories: 329
Total Fat: 15.3 g* (This is mostly heart-healthy fats from the walnuts and flaxseed, both of which contain Omega-3 fatty acids.)
Cholesterol: 0.0 mg
Sodium: 1.2 mg
Total Carbs: 44.9 g
Dietary Fiber: 8.8 g
Protein: 8.9 g

Divide the oatmeal into single servings (1 cup food storage containers work great for this) or deliver the gift in a decorative cookie jar. Personalize this as you'd like. Swap almonds, pumpkin seeds or pecans for the walnuts; use raisins, dried pineapple or some apple rings instead of cranberries. If you prefer sweetened oatmeal: Add cocoa powder and a bit of sugar, toss in some brown sugar or give a bottle of real maple syrup to supplement the gift. You can also use barley, cracked wheat, wheat germ or oat bran.

Bonus: Buy the materials for this oatmeal from the bulk bins at the grocery store to save more money.

How do you top your oatmeal?

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Healthy, Homemade Gifts: Chocolate Spoons

A Spark People idea for those of us looking for ways to cut cost on gift this year. I will be sharing more ideas with you. Let's make this a less comercial Christmas and put our hearts and hands into making special gifts this year.

Healthy, Homemade Gifts: Chocolate Spoons
By: Stepfanie Romine (a Spark People contributor)

You might say that chocolate isn't a "healthy" gift. We disagree. Everything is fine in moderation, and dark chocolate (at least 70%) contains antioxidants.

Studies have found that dark chocolate helps prevent heart disease and cancer, and has also been shown to improve mood by boosting the brain chemical serotonin. Some even consider chocolate an effective diet food, claiming that a chunk of chocolate before meals diminishes your appetite.

Just be choosy about your chocolate and monitor your portions. That's one reason we love these chocolate spoons. They're easy to make and are instantly portion controlled.

Chocolate spoons
What you need:

10 Spoons (pick up mismatched ones at the thrift store)

1 cup semisweet or dark chocolate*

Fun extras: crushed peppermint candy, melted white chocolate, sprinkles, shredded coconut

Waxed paper

Plastic wrap


Melt chocolate in the microwave. Set timer for 2 minutes or so, taking care to stir every 30 seconds or so.

Spread out a sheet of waxed paper. Dip clean, dry spoons into the chocolate, then place them on the waxed paper. Allow the spoons to cool slightly, then dip them in the chocolate again. Repeat until chocolate reaches the desired thickness on the spoon. While they're still warm, add the "extras" if you're using them. Place spoons in the fridge to set. Once firm and cool, wrap each one in plastic wrap and tie with a ribbon.

Calories: 43.6 calories, 2.3 g fat (extras not included; you'll only use about 1/2 cup of chocolate.)
*Dark chocolate contains at least 70% cacao.

What's your favorite chocolate combination? Recently, I've become fond of the orange-dark chocolate combination. Would you make these spoons to give to someone?

Sunday, October 26, 2008

The Pumpkin Adventure

I just rec'd this email from my daughter. I really have to share it with all of you. I do have her permission. She tells it in such a funny way.

"One of my dearest friends, Landon's godmother Dori, Kelly (Dori's cousin), the kids and I went on a great adventure yesterday and wanted to share our story.

Dori and I had this wonderful plan to go to the pumpkin patch to take the boys on a hay ride and pick pumpkins. This would be her nephews first time to a pumpkin patch. Of course Bryan was relieved, he didn't have to participate in such an activity. We had it planned for atleast a week. We waited out the weather, as it had been raining the day before, and just when the sun started peeking out, we were off.

We drove all the way to Camden, ok, it only takes about 30 minutes, but still.... we had a one year old (Dori's nephew baby Allen, or as she lovingly has named him "Goose") "singing" the whole way, and my two boys who were extremely excited about going to the pumpkin patch!

Let me point out that it was approximately 2:30 when we left. Dori had plans at 6, in Columbia (which is an hour away), and I had a babysitter arriving at the house at 5, so we had a time limit, but surely an accountant and lawyer could pull it off, after all, we are both really intelligent women.

We arrived at the patch, sometime after 3 only to find out they were SHUT DOWN:(

So here we are, with three kids, who were obviously disappointed, well Goose doesn't count, he was still "singing" in his own little world and appeared very content watching all the cows in the fields.

So, Dori being a lawyer and I an accountant had to come up with Plan B, and fast! We decided to turn back and follow these signs to a haunted house, we thought they surely would have pumpkins for sale!

We drove and drove and drove, left turn, right turns, who knew where we were going, but we knew there just had to be some pumpkins there. We did notice, that the signs all had different dates on them some appeared very old, but the lawyer and accountant in the Tahoe were determined to find pumpkins! Kelly, the very intelligent teenager, announced that some of those signs were for pervious years, as the dates were not coordinating with the weekends. Darn smartass teenagers think they know everything.

Dalton began protesting in the back, "Turn around, turn around!" And of course his shadow, Landon, chimed right along!

Finally it was 4 pm, and we found the haunted house location, which was CLOSED, and no pumpkins in site.

At this point we agreed it was time to turn around. We had paid attention to all the signs, and planned to simply follow them pack out of the country roads. So we followed our signs back, or so we thought! Somehow we ended up going in a complete circle and ended up right back at the haunted house, which as you know was CLOSED.

So the lawyer says to the accountant, I think we went in a circle, and the teenager laughs at us! The smart lawyer announces that the accountant needs to pull up along side that Dodge truck over there, which happens to be the only person we have seen in the past hour and half, because the farmer on the tractor didn't count, for directions back to Camden, which will be our last resort for pumpkins.

The polite toothless lady in the Dodge, said "take that road right there, to the stop sign and turn right, and then drive to the next stop sign and turn right again, and you will be smack into Camden." What do you know, her directions were perfect, and we went right past the originally pumpkin patch that was SHUT DOWN, and arrived to a main road in Camden.

Some where along the way, Goose got quite, yep he fell asleep! The lawyer at this point was a little green, apparently lawyers do not do well on country roads driven by accountants. Then the miracle happened, as we turned left, there was a church parking lot, filled with PUMPKINS. Landon proudly announces, "We are finally here, we made it!" Seeing the boys smiles was all worth it. The lawyer's color improved, and six pumpkins later, we were on our way. We arrived back at our house around 4:50, just in time for the babysitter, and for Dori to return her nephew and head back to Columbia.

Hope you all enjoy our pictures, and remember this, never trust a lawyer and an accountant to plan a trip to a pumpkin patch!"

Friday, October 3, 2008

Repeating my blog message here:

I am heading to Syracuse NY tomorrow. My best friend will pick me up at the airport. We will start our Road Trip right away. I wish I had a laptop so that I could share this journey on line with you all.
You know that big trip after graduation that you always wanted to take? Well this is my trip. I have always wanted to travel by car across the country. And what better way to do it than with your best friend.
So here we are a couple of grandma's taking a trip across the country by car. She is moving there and I am keeping her company on the trip. We have been best friends for 36 years. We raised are kids together, camped together and drank a lot of coffee together. We have laughed and cried together many times over the last three decades. I am so happy to be able to join her on this trip. I can't wait to see some of this beautiful country we live in.

I worry that I will lose my momentum here with not being able to visit with all my teams. In the past traveling has meant weight gain. I am hoping that this time the desire stays with me to eat healthy and to get some exercise.

I will be reporting back. around the 20th or 21st of this month. I will have weigh in on the 23rd so I will let you all know how I have done.


Thursday, October 2, 2008

Monday, September 15, 2008

Stamp Camp success

Hello fellow stampers. I held my first of this year's Christmas Card Stamp Camp on Sat. I prepared for 6, which means lots of cutting. Wore the blade out on my cutter. I like to have one extra set of things in case someone wants to come at the last minute. Unfortunately this time one canceled out at the last minute, so I had two extra sets. What did that mean for me... I got some of my own crds done. After everyone left and before I cleaned everything up, I made up my cards. Yahoo... Now I am ahead on my own cards. I think everyone liked the cards I designed. One was a gate fold, one was on glossy card stock, and one was embossed on a cuttle bug. I am sure you all are dying to see them and I promise I will take some pictures later today to show you. One of the stampers had never done any stamping before. I didn't even know her before Sat. Another new stamper gave her my card and she called to join the class. I just love new stampers, they are so excited about making the cards and the different techniques you use. Hard to beleive that Christmas is only 3 months and 10 days away! Have a great day.

Monday, September 8, 2008

I'm a Mazda RX-8!

You're sporty, yet practical, and you have a style of your own. You like to have fun, and you like to bring friends along for the ride, but when it comes time for everyday chores, you're willing to do your part.

Take the Which Sports Car Are You? quiz.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Christmas Card Stamp Camp

I will be getting ready for Christmas Card Stamp Camp this week. I have 6 maybe 7 ladies signed up. This is the biggest group I have done in my home. I plan on setting up stations and step it out instructions so that those who know how, can work at their own pace. I have several brand new stampers that will need to have more help. We always have a good time at these camps and I look forward to preparing for this class. It must be the elementary teacher in me that loves all the prep work for the classes.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

It has been a busy summer!

We have had Birthday's, grandsons visiting, visiting our daughter and family in SC, My hospice volunteering, Library volunteering, and stamp classes. Since I decided to give up being a SU demo I am finding myself very busy with new stampers. I already have 5 people signed up for my first Christmas Stamp Camp of the year, Sept 13th. My Coffee Shop stampers Class is growing too. It is always so much fun to get new stampers.

I connected with a distant cousin of my husband's while doing genealogy research. I have been having a lot of fun looking over all the info she shared with me. She even shared a photo of my husband's grandfather when he first came to this country at age 2. I am having so much fun researching my roots. I have a line on another branch of my family and hope it leads to more info.

Last week I had a little scare, with dizziness and chest discomfort. Went to the ER and then was admitted overnight to monitor my heart. PTL I had a clean bill of health on my heart. Just a little low on Potassium, and a sinus infection. I am on an antibiotic and feeling pretty good. Scared my kids, and DH. My DD told me the next time I needed time away from DH I should get a hotel room, it would be cheaper.LOL In a way it was good, because it made me realize I need to take better care of myself.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Relay for Life

Today is Relay for Life. I am quite excited about it. This is my first Relay, not sure of what to expect, but I am looking forward to it. I was able to raise over $200 myself, and I helped with some corporate fund raising. Our team exceeded it's goal already, so anyuthing we make tonight will be extra. We will be setting up Wi Fi bowling at our booth. That should be fun.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

The Genealogy Bug

If you have never been bitten by this bug, you may not appreciate the phone call I had today. A real live person from my DH's family line contacted me today. We will be sharing info on our families and adding more branches to our trees. I hope that all of you have someone in your family that is keeping family records for future generations. I did not start until recently. My parents and my DH's parents are deceased. All my dad's siblings are gone and only two are left on my mom's side. It is so much harder to connect the dots without a real live person to talk with. I just became the eldest cousin on my dad's side of the family. I am the keeper of the family information. I can't wait to put this information in a scrapbook.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Big Announcement......

I have been promising a big announcement for the past month. We are back from vacation and it is time to make that announcement. I am giving up my SU demonstratorship. There I have said it and beginning August 1st, I am a free agent. I am no longer bond by SU and will be able to show other products and stamps at all my classes. I am very excited about this. I was never meant to be a business woman, It is jut not my thing. I am, and always will be, a teacher. That is what I enjoy and that is what I will continue to do. I will not leave my SU customers high and dry. I love SU products and will continue to use them myself. I have made arrangements with a dear friend who will put in SU orders for us. Thank you Carol, you are the best. So if there is something you want, contact me and Carol will get it for you. The new catalog is going to be released in August and I am sure you are dying to see what SU has to offer. Let me know if you want one of the new catalogs.

I had my first stamping event since coming back from vacation. It was good to get back to stamping after my 6 week hiatus. We made card organizers. I got to use my new zutter bind it machine for the first time. I love that machine. I can see many other projects in my future. I will take a picture of it tomorrow and get it posted for you all to see.

It is good to be home. I was able to do a lot of genealogy stuff while in NY. Spent a lot of time walking through cemeteries. I learned a lot and I now have more questions to find answers to. More tomorrow.....

Monday, June 16, 2008


I will be making an announcement in July. Stop back for more news once I return from vacation.
We are having a wonderful time in NY. It is always fun to see family and old friends. I spent some time with my brother, nephew, and great nieces over the weekend. Sure is fun watching the next generation growing up. My DH fishing trip did not include father's day this year. We actually got to spend it with our son. I love seeing father and son together. They are more alike every year. I got to see that scar on his knee in person. I think I am glad I didn't see it right after the snow mobile accident. We will be off to see more friends this week. The time is flying by.

Thursday, June 5, 2008

On Vacation!

I have had no visitors to this blogsite, but just incase you happen by, I will be away for all of June. I may have the opportunity to post durning that time, but if I don't look for me in July.

Monday, May 19, 2008

a few projects

I did these a long time ago; made with a simply scrappin kit.

Part of my stamp room

Thought I wouls show you where I store my stamps, (well most of them anyways) I am hoping that posting this will encourage me to straighten the rest of the stamp room to show you. Right know it is very cluttered and disorganized. I am having a cook out on Memorial day, so I need to get this room back in shape. I have moved a lot of things around, but I still am not happy with the way I have things.

Sunday, May 18, 2008

This is where we live.

This is Miss Chloe Belle, the only "grandaughter" I will likely have.

New camera, new pictures

It took me awhile to figure out how to get the pictures on to my PC from my camera, but I did finally get them transferred. Now I will share some new things with you. This is my Daughter. Mother of my two wonderful grandson's. Isn't she cute?


It has been a long time since I posted anythng on this site. I thought I would like to update my blogsites today. I have a few pictures to share. Which I will do in a little while. I have been realy busy with my genealogy research. I have really been bitten by that bug. Most of what I have found has been pretty easy to find, now it is getting more difficult. Some days the searching reveals nothing new, but every once and a while I uncover something new and I get all excited again. We will be heading up to Rochester NY at the end of the month. I hope to do a lot of digging while I am there. My family is from Central NY so I will be trying to spend so time there connecting with distant relatives and combing old records. I can hardly wait. I will also be going to a CKC in Buffalo with my friend Patty. We will be working several of the events , but will have plenty of time to shop! We always have a great time at this convention. Maybe I will see some of you there.

Monday, March 17, 2008

I just got a new digital camera... Now I can post some pictures. These are the cards I made at my class this week. Got my idea from Maria Bell. Who has a great blogsite in case you haven't been there. You will find her in my blog roll. The second picture is one I got from somewhere... sorry can't remember who right now. oops just checked and I didn't up load it to my computer yet. I will do that and get back to you. OK to give credit where credit is due... finally remember where I saw the happy hello card... On Roxy's blog. Another great blog for isnspiration.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

So... I haven't added the stamp sale list.

I will take some time this afteroon to do that. I have been devoting a lot of time to my weight loss journey, see my other blog site. I do have a class to prepare for this weekend so I will be working on that tomorrow. Maria has a great tutorial on a slit flower frame that I want to try. I will be playing with that tomorrow.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

retired stamps sets ...what should I do?

I have a bunch of these to sell: I have seen serveral people who are selling them on their blog so I thought I might as well do that. I will make up a list with prices and post it tomorrow. I never know how to price them so hopefully I will be able to figure that out. Be on the look out tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

family pics

here are a few pictures from the wonderful visit we had with our DGS. This is GS making dinner for Papa.

After our visit to Build a Bear. This is Lucky and our GS.

Results of the snowmobile accident

So this is what he did to his knee, pretty nasty huh? He would have a fit if he knew I was posting this. Stitches come out tomorrow.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Three snowmoblie accidents

If someone has had his third snowmoblie accident in the last 10 years shouldn't he be getting rid of the snowmoblie for good? Each time he was lucky not to get killed; broken pelvis, broken ankles, deep laceration requiring 35 stitches to close it up. I sometimes think one of thesse days I will get that dreaded phone call that says he didn't make it this time. Thank God he will recover from this one.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Got a funny email today, I posted it on my other blogsite, check it out.

Friday, February 1, 2008

New decade begins!

I turned 60 on Monday (see my other blog to ready about my big day :gram's diet club . I can hardly believe that I am that old. I started doing genealogy research on my family so I am sure my age is correct... I just don't feel that old. I have really neglected this site and want to do better, so Today is Feb. 1st and I am going to post for the first time in almost a month. I really have gotten into genealogy research and spend most of my time doing that and not reading my online blogs. I am going to take some time today to see what you all have been up to.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

What is your "word" for 2008?

I am choosing a word for the year. Something that helps me focus on my goals this year. My word Came to me in Church on Sunday and it has stuck with me since. The word I choose is "Capture"
I want to capture moments in time for reflection, I want to capture memories I am making with my grandsons, or wish to make with them. I want to use my camera more to Capture events, moments and memories. My goal is to do more scrapbooking this year, so capture seems to be appropriate for me. What is your word for the year? post it here and let me know.

January Schedule update

I just noticed that I had writen that my classes were being held in Feb, Oops, I meant Jan. I corrected the sidebar, Check it out! If you would like to sign up for a class email me or call.
I am going to work on a scrapbook for my TOPS group. We willl be holding an Open house next week, and I wanted to have it finished for that night. I will use SU stuff but the book itself is not SU. When I get the pages done I will share them here, Stay tuned.

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Happy New Year

Vacation is over, the holidays are over and now it is time to get back to stamping and scrapping. I have worked on my class schedule and my January Newsletter. The Newsletter was sent out earlier today. I will post the class schedule on the side bar, check it out. DH and I are coping with holiday colds. As soon as I am feeling better I will tackle my scrap room and get some pictures up of cards I have done recently. One of my goals this year is to post more of my work.