Here’s my favorite drink for staying hydrated and pH balanced. Simple (just 3 ingredients) and satisfying, I drink this water year round but it’s especially refreshing during the summer heat. In a glass carafe or pitcher, add 1/2 sliced cucumber, juice of 1 lemon (or lime) and 1 bunch of mint leaves (about 15). Fill carafe with water. Cover and refrigerate for 4 hours. Sip on the water throughout the day for a tasty, alkaline treat. Brew will last up to 2 days. Even cooler tip: Before making a new batch, use the cut up cucumber and mint in your favorite smoothie recipe.
According to the EPA, Americans generate 25% more trash than usual between Thanksgiving and New Years. That’s about an additional 25 million tons.* We’re talking a LOT of empty containers of eggnog and canned yams! Not to mention all the cards, paper and gift boxes that still get thrown in the garbage instead of the recycle bin. This season, make a promise and an effort to gift Mother Earth. Here are a few ways to start: Read more.
*EPA Source – Consumer Reports December 2015
How’d you like to be around scrumptious food like this and help a great cause at the same time? If you live in the Portland metro area, here’s an opportunity. Albertina Kerr needs volunteers, especially servers for their restaurant in NE PDX. Albertina’s Restaurant features Northwest-inspired cuisine in a garden setting serving lunch/brunch Mon thru Sat. Also on site is the Kerr’s Economy Jar (antiques consignment), Albertina’s Jewel Box (gift shop for jewelry/accessories), and the Kerr Thrift Shop (clothing for men & women/household items) – all run by volunteers! All proceeds and tips help support the work of Albertina Kerr, which strengthens Oregon families and communities by helping children and adults with developmental disabilities and mental health challenges – empowering them to live richer lives. Click here for information about volunteer opportunities. Click here to read a recent Oregonian article featuring the restaurant, it’s new chef and the history behind the famous Kerr name.
Anyone who has cared for the elderly knows the challenges inherent in the process. Especially when it comes to meal time. I can remember fighting back the tears when, night after night, I would prepare delicious dinners for my Mom only to have her push the plate aside and retreat to her room and eat her “hidden” Hershey Almond Bars. This went on for months. When she had recovered from her cancer surgery and was well enough to live on her own again, she would eat the occasional meal out but at the end of her life, her diet consisted of coffee, cans of Ensure and her beloved chocolate bars. My Grandmother was bedridden during her last year of cancer and refused most of what we prepared except for rice pudding and chocolate chip cookies. That stubborn German streak came out in full force whenever we tried to make her eat something “good for you.”
Years later, my work in hospice taught me much regarding the eating habits of the aged. As “care” givers, the last thing we give up is the urge to feed our loved ones. Like that mama bird with a worm for her little ones. We want to nurture. It’s VERY hard to let that instinct go. At the same time, the body of our loved one shuts down to prepare for its transition, it stops wanting food. Sweets are typically the last item on the list. I’ve cleared numerous homes for folks who have lost a loved one and am always amazed at the number of candy wrappers found in the bedroom. The 92-yr old tennis player and mother of four that lives above me is not suffering from any illness but she, too, has started her journey home and only desires ice cream and orange Cuties. My approach to all of this is softer and wiser now. I’ve decided that there is a reason and a season … even for sugar. And as a recent article in The Oregonian reminds us, it’s okay to let Grandma eat custard. Read the article now. Are you in the process of relocating an elderly person? Click here to read my special Handle With Care tips.
Looking for a unique caterer for your holiday party? A Clear Place award winner, Happy Sparrow Cafe, is a perfect way to go. Owners, Mary and Danny, make their scrumptious sweet and savory kolaches with local ingredients and lots of love. Delivered fresh from the oven to your venue, these little buns are a hit with everyone. Choose from yummy sweets like Nutella Hazelnut and Strawberry Love or savory favorites like Texas Hot Link (with Tillamook cheese and Zenner sausage) and Garden Vegan. Priced right, supports local business and comes with smiles … now that’s a clear choice! View menu options and place your order.