There are no wrong turns, only unexpected paths.
~ Mark Nepo

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pumkinseed

Image: CountryLivingMagazine

I absolutely love pumpkins, but most of all, I enjoy the seeds! Sure, pumpkins are festive and fun, but the seeds REALLY rock. I eat them all year-long and found a recipe from Country-Living Magazine that I just had to share with you. It’s so easy and SO incredibly delish.

Ingredients:

  • Cooking Spray
  • 2 cups sugar
  • ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 ½ cups pepitas (raw shelled pumpkin seeds)
  • (approximately 7 ounces)
  1. Line a 9-by-13 inch rimmed baking sheet with parchment, coat with cooking spray, and set atop a wire rack.
  2. In a medium saucepan fitted with a candy thermometer, bring sugar, cinnamon, salt, and 1 cup water to a boil, stirring just until sugar is dissolved.  Continue cooking until temperature reaches 238 degrees F., about 8 minutes.  Stir in pumpkin seeds and continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until temperature reaches 290 degrees F., about 5 minutes more.
  3. Remove mixture from heat and carefully pour onto prepared pan.  Using a rubber spatula coated with cooking spray, spread into a thin layer.  Let cool completely, about 1 hour.  Lift brittle from pan and peel away parchment.  Break into pieces.  Store in an airtight container for up to 1 week.

Makes 16 servings.  Working time 20 min. Total time 35 minutes, plus cooling

So scrumptious!! Feedback, please!!!

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question

Image: En.wikipedia.org

This question, “Who are the most important people in your life?” is a challenging one for me because as much as I want to say, “My friends” and “My family” I am encouraging myself to narrow it down from a general response to a specific one. This is helping me cultivate an immense amount of gratitude for the people who are most important in my life…which is a great and special Shining Moment today. I hope that it is the same for you! I am giddy to hear your response to this question!

 

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survivor necklace

Image: malibeads.com

Ladies, do you want to be simple and stylish? The survivor necklace by MaLiBeads is so cool and a true statement piece. It’s a beauty, isn’t it?! This casual necklace is only $150 and 20% of the proceeds go to Susan G. Komen. Check it out at malibeads.com. I’m ordering mine today!

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cancer fighting foods

Image: eatingmywaytobetterhealth.blogspot.com

Did you know what you eat for dinner affects how you feel 15 minutes later? Eating right can really make a difference. Consuming more fruits, vegetables and whole grains is a smart plan for cancer prevention, but there are some foods that may give you extra protection.  Here are six items to add to your grocery list:

  1. Rosemary – Rosemary contains carnosol, a natural chemical that has been found to potentially help reduce breast cancer.
  2. Ginger – Fresh or dried ginger has antioxidant properties that may aid in cancer prevention, says research.
  3. Tea – Compared with those who don’t drink tea, regular sippers (green, black oolong or white all count) are at a lower risk of certain cancers, such as breast, colon, ling and ovarian.
  4. Pecans – This pantry good as well as walnuts and pomegranates contain ellagic acid, a nutrient that research suggests inhibits cancer cell growth.
  5. Grapefruit – This juicy citrus fruit – along with bell peppers and oranges-is chock-full of vitamin C, which may block the formation of cancer-causing compounds.
  6. Cruciferous vegetables – Raw broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower contain glucosinolates, a type of phytonutrient that can help kick-start the production of toxin-clearing enzymes.

Stock your pantry and refrigerator with these delicious foods. You’ll feel better and lower your risk for cancer.

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Fighting against Breast Cancer

Image: Nagrat.org

Testing, Testing!

Many of you inquired about what types of screenings to have for breast cancer. As you know, I’m not a doctor, but I am pretty diligent with my research! Below you will read about four different types of screenings.

  1. Digital Mammography – Today most mammograms are done digitally, which enables them to be stored easily so they’re available for comparison.  Radiologists can also enhance or magnify a digital image to better determine if there are signs of cancer.  Although there’s been some concern about the amount of radiation received through a mammogram, experts say the exposure is relatively minimal.
  2. 3-D Mammography – This digital mammogram uses both x-ray technology and computer software to reconstruct images of the breast. It’s usually done at the same time as the two-dimensional digital mammogram, which means that you are exposed to slightly more radiation.  However, initial results look promising: Massachusetts General Hospital reports finding 20 percent more cancers with 3-D screenings while calling back 40 percent fewer patients for second-look exams.
  3. Ultrasound – Aka sonography, ultrasound uses sound waves to look inside the breasts.  It’s sometimes used to evaluate a potential issue found during a mammogram or physical exam, but it’s not routinely used for screening alone.  It can be a beneficial screening for women who have dense breasts.
  4. MRI – Magnetic resonance imaging uses radio waves plus a powerful
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FEED

feed

Image: Spears.okstate

This fall, Lauren Bush Lauren, the founder of FEED (the company behind the burlap totes that help raise money to fight world hunger), is launching a 30-day fundraiser across the country.  The challenge:  Host a dinner party at which each guest donates just $1.10-enough to feed 10 meals to a child in need.  The goal is to raise enough money for 1 million meals by World Food Day, October 16.  What a great idea! If you are unable to host a dinner party, please donate. $1.10 goes a very long way!!! For more information go to feedprojects.com

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Lunar Eclipse

lunar

Image: enwikipedia.com

         Head outside before dawn on Wednesday, October 8th to view the second (and last) total lunar eclipse this year. When the moon passes within the Earth’s shadow, it turns reddish-brown and is called a “blood moon.”  Find exact viewing times for your location and more info at earthsky.org. It will be out of this world!

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bcam

Image: Petsalon.com

Are you wondering why gobs of buildings are illuminated pink…and why there is a proliferation of pink ribbons every (f-bomb) where?  Well, it is because October is National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. Again. I wrote about this topic last year and feel like it would be helpful to share it with you again this year.

Prior to my personal experience with breast cancer, I knew about National Breast Cancer Awareness Month only from the illuminated buildings and omnipresent ad campaigns…then it became personal when in 2008, I was diagnosed and began my journey in the “Pink Bubble.”

The truth of the matter is that when it comes to influencing consumer behavior, the more times a message is heard, the more likely it is to have an impact. The same is true when it comes to influencing health behavior. That’s why public health agencies and non-profit organizations often work together to support monthly health awareness campaigns.

So, that’s why there is and will continue to be a whole lotta pink this month.

To begin the month, first please allow me to say that I’m so, so, so sorry if you or a loved one has been touched (knocked out is probably a better description) by this f-bomb disease. Secondly, finding information about it can be, well, daunting (to say the least).  So, I thought I’d take this opportunity to share some of my favorite sources for information:

  1. American Cancer Society: www.cancer.org
  2. American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG): www.acog.org
  3. American College of Radiology (ACR):  www.acr.org
  4. The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO):  www.asco.org
  5. The American Medical Women’s Association (AMWA):  www.amwa-doc.org
  6. AstraZeneca HealthCare Foundation: www.astrazeneca-us.com/foundation
  7. BREASTCANCER.org: http://www.breastcancer.org/
  8. CancerCare: www.cancercare.org
  9. Men Against Breast Cancer: www.menagainstbreastcancer.org
  10. National Medical Association (NMA): www.nmanet.org
  11. The Oncology Nursing Society (ONS): www.ons.org
  12. Prevent Cancer Foundation: www.preventcancer.org
  13. Susan G. Komen for the Cure:  www.komen.org
  14. Living Beyond Breast Cancer: www.lbc.org

When you go to these sites, I know that there is soooooooo much information. I found myself overwhelmed on a daily, if not hourly basis.  Come to think of it, I was overwhelmed with the thought of making (and then eating!) a piece of toast. Trying to navigate a site with so much can be very challenging.

Please know that if you ever have questions…or need gentle guidance, I’m here to help (to the best of my ability).  The Why Buy a Wig community continues to inspire me every single day which is one of the (many) Shining Moments in my life. I am so grateful to you, dear readers, for your support, encouragement, questions and input. I look so forward to hearing from you!

 

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fall

Image: Collegegreenlight.com

Welcome to October!  This has always been my favorite month of the year because it seems to signify the real change in season (September still feels like summer to me). I love the change in seasons. I love the colors and the crisp cool air, too.

Some of the things I love about October:

  • Crispy, crunch autumn leaves on the sidewalk.
  • Caramel apples.
  • Halloween Music (e.g., Thriller, Monster Mash, Psycho Theme Song, I Put a Spell on You, Halloween, The Magic of Halloween).
  • Apple crisp.
  • Pumpkin pie. Pumpkin bread. Pumpkin cookies. Pumpkin face mask.
  • Cool crisp air.
  • The Great Pumpkin Charlie Brown (definitely a Shining Moment).
  • Fashion: Tweed, Boots, Corduory, Cashmere.
  • College football
  • Vegetarian chili.
  • Candy corn.
  • A long walk in the autumn sunshine.
  • New seasons of Modern Family and The Good Wife (all of which I watched for hours on end on my couch).

This October has special significance because on October 22nd five years ago, I had to have a hysterectomy.  It feels like it was yesterday and it feels like it was 100 years ago.  What a “few years” in this life it has been, filled with hardship and pain, but also resilience and Shining Moments.

I hope that this is an extraordinary month for you!

October

Crispy air and azure skies,
High above, a white cloud flies,
Bright as newly fallen snow.
Oh the joy to those who know October!

Colors bright on bush and tree.
Over the weedy swamp, we see
A veil of purple and brown and gold.
Thy beauty words have never told. October!

Scolding sparrows on the lawn,
Rabbits frisking home at dawn,
Pheasants midst the sheaves of grain,
All in harmony acclaim, October!

Brown earth freshly turned by plow,
Apples shine on bended bough,
Bins o’erflowed with oats and wheat,
And satisfaction reigns complete. October!

Radiant joy is everywhere.
Spirits in tune to the spicy air,
Thrill in the glory of each day.
Life’s worth living when we say, October!

- Joseph Pullman Porter

 

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