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Love is…

Dancing through the daffodils

Skipping with the lambs

Love is many things

Love is…

Finding that spring in your step

When your heart is leaping

Wherever you may tread

Love is…

Feeling that burning desire

Being with the one you love

To set your emotions on fire

Love is…

That unique feeling

That unique bond

Knowing you belong

Love is…

Picnics in the park

Being together

Underneath the stars

Love is…

Emotion you may discover

Happiness or sadness

Love is a roller-coaster

Love is an experience

To cherish like no other

Gillian Sims

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I MEANT TO DO MY WORK TODAY

I meant to do my work today…
But a brown bird sang in the apple tree.
And a butterfly flitted across the field,
And all the leaves were calling me.
And the wind went sighing over the land,
Tossing the grasses to and fro,
And a rainbow held out its shining hand…
So what could I do but laugh and go?

~By Richard LeGallienne~

TREES

Trees are the kindest things I know,
They do no harm, they simply grow.
And spread a shade for sleepy cows,
And gather birds among their boughs.

They give us fruit in leaves above,
And wood to make our houses of,
And leaves to burn on Halloween,
And in the Spring new buds of green.

They are first when the day’s begun
To touch the beams of morning sun,
They are the last to hold the light
When evening changes into night.

And when a moon floats on the sky
They hum a drowsy lullaby,
Of sleepy children long ago…
Trees are the kindest things I know.

~By Harry Behn~

FEEDING THE BIRDS…

To me, the garden is a doorway to other worlds;
one of them, of course, is the world of birds.
The garden is their dinner table,
bursting with bugs and worms and succulent berries.
~by Anne Raver~

***

As Autumn aproaches,
it’s time to set up a feeding station
for our feathered friends,
so we can enjoy their company in our garden,
over the winter months.
In the garden, their are plenty of plants,
rich in berries, enticing birds into the garden,
but they will need a little extra,
to see them through the months to come.

***

Here are some festive ideas…

String whole peanuts
and dried fruit together to create a garland.

Scoop out some orange halves,
make three holes around the rim for hanging
and then tie with string/ribbon.
Fill with suet, nuts or birdseed.

Find some pinecones,
and coat with peanut butter or suet,
then roll in birdseed.
Hang on your bird-table,
or tree with string/ribbon.

***

A really good idea,
is too keep a container with a lid
in the kitchen,
to put
bread crumbs/stale bread/crusts/crackers/rolls in,
and biscuits/cookies/cake and cereals,
also apple cores can go in too.

What a feast they will have 🙂

GARDEN PATH

Let’s stroll along a garden path
And just enjoy the day
No thoughts of worries fill our minds
We’ll just wander on our way.

Forget about life’s problems
You’ll see that they will keep
Just walk with me a little ways
Nature’s blessings we will reap.

Let’s find some joy in little things
We’ll talk of nothing much
Just wander down the garden path
Sweet flowers we shall touch.

We’ll find a spot to sit awhile
And watch the clouds float by
We’ll listen to the song of birds
And sigh a pleasant sigh.

When at last the day is over
And home now we must go
Take the memory along with you
For the days you’re feeling low.

~by Charlotte Anselmo~

A LITTLE POEM…

The kiss of the sun for pardon.
The song of the bird for mirth.
One is nearer God’s heart in a garden
Than anywhere else on earth.

~Author Unknown~

DO NOT STAND AT MY GRAVE AND WEEP

Do not stand at my grave and weep;
I am not there, I do not sleep.
I am a thousand winds that blow;
I am the diamond glints on snow.
I am the sunlight on ripened grain;
I am the gentle autumn’s rain.

When you awaken in the morning’s hush,
I am the swift uplifting rush;
of quiet birds in circled flight.
I am the soft star that shines at night.
Do not stand at my grave and cry.
I am not there; I did not die.

~Author Unknown~

CHINESE PROVERBS…

Keep a green tree in your heart
and perhaps a singing bird will come.
~Chinese Proverb~

That the birds of worry and care
fly over your head,
this you cannot change,
but that they build nests in your hair,
this you can prevent.
~Chinese proverb~

A bird does not sing
because it has an answer;
it sings because it has a song.
~Chinese proverb~

MY MOTHER

One crisp, bright, moisty, morning,
When Spring was on the brink,
My memories started blooming,
I couldn’t help but think.

Of a woman I called Mother,
And what she’s meant to me,
Of long time that has passed,
Just what and who was she?

Did you ever see a butterfly,
Elusive and so free,
So elegant and beautiful,
A sight for all to see?

Did you ever see a sunset,
Spectacular and bright,
But fading, oh, so quickly,
Like a spurling, whirling kite?

Did you ever see the dewdrops,
Sparkling in the sun,
Just waiting to be gently touched,
But gone before it’s done?

Did you ever see a rainstorm,
Brewing in the sky,
Slowly rumbling and a tumbling,
Before your very eyes?

I know you’ve heard a songbird,
With it’s slow caressing tune,
That comforts and that soothes you,
As a warm beeze blows at noon.

All of these are memories,
Of a timid soul, I’ve known,
Who I can now appreciate,
Since I am up and grown!

~By Phyllis Cole~

 

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heartspppppppppp

Did You Know?

Approximately 141 million Valentine’s Day cards are exchanged annually, making Valentine’s Day the second most popular card-sending holiday after Christmas.

SEND YOUR LOVE POEMS

TO

poetreecreations@yahoo.com

love poems

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bin

6 Ways To Boost Your Child’s Immune System

We don’t just have to accept our child’s current state of health. We can actually take measures to boost their defenses, speed healing, and help them to gain a greater level of wellness.

Here’s how:

1. It starts with a great diet.

Children’s immune systems can take a hit if they’re constantly being bombarded with food intolerances, additives, preservatives, and sugar. When a child has a food allergy, her digestion suffers, inflammation is ramped up, which makes fending off viruses and bacteria much more difficult. It’s a similar story when a child takes in more additives and preservatives than her body can deal with.

Sugar has been shown in many clinical trials to actually suppress immunity. To keep kids well, limit their overall intake of additives, sugar, and find out which foods are allergens. Focus on plenty of fresh veggies, whole fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, eggs, and meat.

2. Maintain your child’s microbiota!

Probiotics are the friendly helpful bacteria that naturally occur in our guts. They protect our digestive tracts, help us to digest food, assist in toxin clearance, and shield us from invading bacteria and viruses. When this bacterial balance becomes disrupted in children, we can see changes in a child’s ability to fend off infections.

I recommend starting children on a probiotic supplement containing lactobacillus and bifidobacteria strains early on — between 5 and 20 billion colony-forming units (CFUs) per day depending on age.

3. Help calm their stress and anxiety.

In today’s fast-paced world, parents are overstressed, children are over-scheduled, and everyone suffers. Children’s bodies have the same response to stress that adults’ do — their cortisol and adrenaline rises. When this elevation in stress hormones is sustained, their immune systems’ response is lowered.

It’s important for children to have lots of down time, time for creative play, and simply times of rest. Busy bodies need to take a break every now and then for their immune systems to thrive.

4. Make sure they’re getting enough good sleep.

Most children are not getting the required amount of sleep. Depending on age, children need between ten and 14 hours of sleep per day. And it’s the quality of sleep that matters most. For proper secretion of melatonin (our sleep hormone), children need to sleep in the dark, without a night light. Since electromagnetic frequency has also been shown to affect sleep quality, make sure your child’s room is unplugged. Make sure all electronic devices are unplugged or better yet, just keep them in another room.

5. Remember that fever helps fight infection.

Although many parents panic at the first sign of a rise in temperature on the thermometer, it’s important to recognize that fever is only a sign of and not an illness itself. Fever is your child’s body’s response to an infection and without it, her body isn’t as effective at fighting the illness. The truth is, your child’s immune systems works better at a high temperature too, so she can get better quickly. Please note that while I do encourage fevers, it’s important to see a physician to make sure the fever is not a sign that something else is going on.

6. Supplements and herbs can work wonders.

The best supplements to boost a child’s immune system are vitamin D and zinc. The herbs elderberry and astragalus are my favorites for recurrent respiratory tract infections. For allergies, fish oil, vitamin C, and nettles work wonders. Please make sure to see your physician before starting your child on any new supplement or herb regiment

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Turning 50 is a huge milestone. For many people, this signifies a new chapter in their life. Maybe your child is now grown and out of the house. Perhaps you’re noticing some new physical changes to your body. Chances are, you will feel different once you reach this significant birthday. Fortunately, many of those changes can be positive. Turning 50 means that you have a lot of life experience. You know what you like and what you don’t like. Use your wisdom to help you become even more amazing and fit when you’re 50 and older.

Getting Physical

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    1

    Join a gym. When you’re over 50, it becomes more important to ease into new physical activities. Your body simply can’t handle abrupt changes and extreme activities in the way that it used to. Joining a gym is a great way to start a new exercise program because you’ll have access to a network of professionals. Look for a gym that offers a free personal training session and health consultation for new members.[1]

    • Many gyms have group exercise classes that are specially programmed for older patrons. Trying a group class is a great way to get in shape and make some new friends.
     

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    2

    Try a new activity. It’s very common to become stuck in an exercise rut. If you are already in good shape, chances are that you have found a method you like and have stuck with it throughout your adult life. But as your body changes, you should consider changing your routine, too. Trying a new form of exercise is a great way to gently challenge your body and get some amazing health benefits.[2][3]

    • Consider trying yoga. Many older people suffer from stiff joints, reduced flexibility, increased body fat, sore muscles, and many other physical ailments.[4] Yoga is great for easing physical tension, and also has amazing mental benefits, too. Try looking for a yoga studio that offers gentle or introductory classes, or senior classes. Those levels will help you to ease into your practice.[5]
     
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    3

    Head outdoors. The health benefits that you get from physical exercise are increasingly important as you age. It becomes even more important to keep your heart healthy. Finding a workout routine that you will stick to is half the battle. You need regular activity in order to see the benefits. Research shows that women over 50 who exercise outdoors are more likely to exercise regularly.[6]

    • Outdoor exercise can be very enjoyable, which is probably why it is easier to commit to. Try finding a walking trail in a picturesque spot near your home. A hike is a great way to get a workout and to get some fresh air.
    • Swimming is a great exercise for you as you get older. It is effective, but very gentle on aging joints. Look for a nearby park that has a community pool.
     
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    4

    Get a workout buddy. There are many benefits to finding a friend to join you during your workouts. Having a partner can help keep you accountable. For example, if you make a plan to exercise with someone, you are less likely to cancel than if you are only disappointing yourself.[7]

    • A workout buddy can help keep you motivated. If you see that they are getting results, it can challenge you to work harder.
    • Try looking for local workout groups online. For instance, many cities have groups you can join that take hikes, go golfing, play tennis, etc.
     
  5. Take a walk. Walking is one of the best ways to both get in shape and stay in shape. It is affordable and everyone can do it, no matter where you live. Walking is low impact, but keeps your heart healthy and your muscles limber. This is especially important as you get a little older.[8]

    • Walking is also great because it doesn’t require any fancy equipment. Try getting a simple pedometer to keep track of your steps. If you like technology, you can also download an app on your smartphone. Try to get 10,000 steps per day. View it as a challenge!
      Image titled Be Amazing and Fit After 50 Step 5
      5

Eating Right

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    1

    Keep a food journal. Your diet is increasingly important as you get older. As you age, you are increasingly at risk for health issues such as high blood pressure and diabetes. Watching your diet can help lower those risks. When you’re trying to eat right, it is helpful to keep a record of what you are eating. Many of us don’t realize how many empty calories we consume. Try keeping a food journal for a few weeks to get an accurate sense of your eating habits.[9]

    • Keeping a food diary can help you identify areas where you need to make changes. This can help you visually see where you need to add more nutrients.[10]
    • There are many great diet and food tracking apps available to download onto your smartphone.
     
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    2

    Eat whole foods. As you age, your metabolism slows down. It becomes increasingly important to eat the right foods so that you don’t gain weight and can decrease your risk of having health issues. Try to eat a balanced diet that includes mostly foods that are not processed and do not have a lot of preservatives. Whole foods include more nutrients than packaged foods.[11]

    • Eat plenty of berries and leafy greens. These foods contain essential nutrients and also aid in healthy digestion.
    • Emphasize fruits, vegetables, and low-fat or fat-free dairy products in your diet.[12]
    • Limit sugar, sodium, red meat, and alcohol.[13]
    • Make sure that your diet includes beans. This inexpensive food is a great source of protein and also helps regulate your blood sugar.
     
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    3

    Stay hydrated. When you’re getting older, it becomes more important to pay attention to your heart health. Older adults are much more likely to suffer heart-related health problems. Drinking plenty of water is very important for your heart health, as it helps your heart effectively pump the blood through your body.[14]

    • The amount of water that you need to drink varies and is based on several factors, such as how much you perspire and how hot your climate is. In general, you should try to drink at least nine 8-oz. servings of water each day — more if you’re active or in a warm climate that causes you to sweat.
    • You may find that you lose some of your sense of thirst as you age — don’t wait until you feel thirsty to have a drink. Make sure you are drinking liquids throughout the day, like water, soup, milk, and juice.[15]
     
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    4

    Use supplements. As you age, your body’s needs change. In order to maintain your health, it becomes increasingly important to make sure that you are getting the required amounts of key nutrients. If you’re not already, consider adding supplements to your daily routine.[16]

    • Before taking any supplements or vitamins, it is essential that you speak with your doctor, especially if you are taking other medications. Vitamins and supplements can react with certain medications, and it is possible to take too much of a vitamin, leading to toxicity and adverse health effects.[17]
    • Try a multivitamin that is specially formulated for people over 50. Ask your doctor for suggestions.
    • B-12 is one of the most important vitamins as you get older. It supports healthy blood cells, and also affects your energy levels. Many older adults suffer from a B-12 deficiency, so make sure you’re getting enough. This nutrient is found in fish, but you can also buy supplements at your drugstore..
    • Some vitamins, such as vitamins A, D, E, and K, are fat-soluble, meaning you don’t eliminate excess through your urine; they stay in your body, stored in your fat, which can lead to toxicity. Excess levels of vitamin E can increase risk of hemorrhaging, and too much vitamin K can reduce or reverse the effect of blood thinners.[18]
     
  3. Ask your doctor for tips. Your general physician is your best resource for health care tips. Your doctor is familiar with your physical health, and can therefore tailor advice to meet your specific needs. As you get older, it is important that you see your doctor regularly. Even if you feel great, you should get a checkup at least once a year.[19]

    • Ask a lot of questions. Don’t be afraid to use your doctor as a resource for many things. You can ask for a recommended exercise plan and tips on how to eat better.
      Image titled Be Amazing and Fit After 50 Step 10

Method 3

Getting Your Mind in Shape

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    1

    Do puzzles. Being amazing and fit means keeping your mind sharp, not just your body. As you age, you might notice yourself becoming a little more forgetful. The older you get, the more important it is to actively work your mind. Doing puzzles is a great way to exercise your brain.[20]

    • Brain teasers and word games are also excellent ways to train your brain. Try doing crossword puzzles or Sudoku. Download games onto your smartphone or tablet.
    • Play chess, bridge, or other challenging board or card games.
     
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    2

    Read more. As you age, your cognitive speed slows down. Research shows that reading more can actually slow the mental aging process. Reading enhances your memory and increases your attention span. So grab a book, newspaper, or magazine and start reading![21]

    • Try joining a book club. Your local bookshop or neighborhood library likely has a variety of groups you can join. Turn reading into a new social experience and meet new people.
     
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    3

    Learn something new. The act of learning is a great way to keep your mind sharp as you age. Continuing your education, learning new skills or pursuing a new hobby may help maintain individual brain cells and fortify your memory.[22]

    • Many people suggest trying to learn a new language, but you don’t have to make it that complicated. Instead, try learning a new vocabulary word each day. To help, get a word of the day calendar or download an app to your phone.[23]
    • You can also try learning a new skill. For example, maybe you’ve always wanted to learn how to knit. Teaching yourself a new hobby is a great way to keep your mind young.
     
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    4

    Socialize more. There are great benefits that come with socializing. Not only is it enjoyable, but it is good for your health. People who socialize regularly tend to have lower blood pressure and a decreased risk of diseases such as Alzheimer’s.[24]

    • Try scheduling regular activities with your friends. For example, create a dinner club that meets once a month. You can get together with friends and try new recipes or restaurants.
    • Interact with your friends and family during your regular activities. For example, take your grandchild to the grocery store with you, or invite your neighbor to go on a walk. There are many ways to get more socialization into your day.
    • If you are looking to meet new people, try going to classes at a yoga studio and striking up conversations with other people who are looking to better themselves. Book clubs, religious meetings, and gyms are also great places to meet other people and socialize.

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Worried you have a gluten-intolerance? Already living with coeliac disease? If you’re gluten-free these top tips from Coeliac UK will help make the everyday a little easier…

Top 10 tips for a gluten-free diet

Coeliac disease is a lifelong, serious autoimmune disease caused by the immune system reacting to gluten – a protein found in wheat, barley and rye. The only treatment for the condition is a strict gluten-free diet for life.

For those newly diagnosed with the condition, the prospect of a strict gluten-free diet may seem daunting at first; but armed with the right knowledge, the gluten-free diet can be relatively easy to adapt to. Here are Coeliac UK’s top 10 tips for everyday eating…

 

check labels

1. Get used to reading food labels when you shop.

All packaged food in the UK and the EU is covered by a law on allergen labelling, meaning you can tell whether or not a product is suitable for a gluten-free diet by reading the ingredients list. If a cereal containing gluten has been used as an ingredient in the product, it must be listed in the ingredients list (no matter how little is used).

The specific grain will be listed, so look out for mentions of wheat, rye, barley, oats, spelt, Kamut® or any other grain which has been made through breeding these together as these all contain gluten. Often, these ingredients will be highlighted in bold.

 

substitutes

2. Use gluten-free substitutes in place of gluten-containing foods

Pasta, bread and crackers all contain gluten, but that doesn’t mean you can’t still enjoy these foods in your diet.  Instead, switch to gluten-free alternatives of your favourite foods, which you will find in most supermarkets and health food stores. Gluten-free substitute foods include pasta, bread, crackers, bread rolls, cereals and more. Those medically diagnosed with coeliac disease can receive some gluten-free staple food on prescription from the NHS.

 

naturally gluten-free

3. Remember lots of foods are naturally gluten-free

Fresh fruit and vegetables, meat, poultry, fish, cheese and eggs are naturally gluten-free, so use these as the basis to your meals.

 

Quinoa

4. Enjoy naturally gluten-free grains and cereals. 

The gluten-free diet doesn’t mean that all grains and cereals are off the menu. Quinoa, teff, amaranth, polenta, buckwheat, corn, millet and tapioca are just some of the naturally gluten-free grains which can be included in the diet. Just check the labels to make sure you are using uncontaminated versions. Try swapping traditional breadcrumbs for polenta crumbs, opt for gluten-free buckwheat or rice noodles and pasta and try baking with quinoa for gluten-free alternatives.

 

 

5. Know which alcohol to avoidalcohol

Gluten-free alcohol includes cider, wine, sherry, spirits, port and liqueurs, but remember that beer, lagers, stouts and ales contain varying amounts of gluten and are not suitable for a gluten-free diet. Gluten-free beers are available in some supermarkets and restaurants, but make sure you only drink those that are labelled in this way.  

 

restaurant

6. Remember you can still enjoy meals out with family and friends

Being on a gluten-free diet doesn’t mean that you can’t eat out – check out Coeliac UK’s online venue guide to see where you can eat out gluten-free.

 

 

7. Be aware of cross contaminationCross contamination

Even a tiny bit of gluten can be enough to cause symptoms for someone with coeliac disease, so make sure you minimise the risk of cross contamination with gluten-containing foods.  Do this by washing down kitchen surfaces before use, using separate butters, spreads and jams to minimise the spread of crumbs and  invest in some toaster bags to keep your gluten-free bread separate.

 

 

Gravy8. Avoid sauces containing gluten

Lots of pasta sauces, gravies, stocks and condiments contain wheat flour, and therefore gluten, so ensure you read the label and exclude anything that isn’t suitable. Instead, try making your own pasta sauces and gravies using cornflour, arrowroot or potato starch to thicken them for a gluten-free option.

 

 

9. Experiment in the kitchenflour

Finding the right gluten-free substitute for your usual gluten-containing ingredients is a matter of personal taste, so spend time in the kitchen getting used to gluten-free flours and baking aids.

 

 

Coeliac10. Remember, gluten-free meals can be just as delicious and healthy too

Once diagnosed with coeliac disease, you can start to make positive changes to your diet to improve your health. Join Coeliac UK for support to help you adjust, which includes a Food and Drink Directory listing products to help you get started in the kitchen.

 

Coeliac disease affects 1 in 100 people in the UK, yet only 10 to 15% of those with the condition have received a diagnosis. Coeliac UK is the national charity for people with coeliac disease and dermatitis herpetiformis (DH) and offers help, advice and support.

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YOGA

 Everything has its plusses and minuses  (except, of course, yoga which is all plusses!). So, while I am not anti-gym, I do think that yoga kicks the gym’s derrière on every level, and you can kick your own (butt, that is) in yoga, literally, if you feel like it!

People are always curious as to “what else I do” to “work out” other than yoga. The answer? Nothing! Yoga is everything my body needs to function at it’s absolute best. Here’s why:

It’s efficient! Why would I waste so much time at the gym working each part of my body separately when I can connect all of the dots and do it all at once with yoga? No amount of lifting weights is going to make my arms as strong as holding up my own body weight in yoga. Also, practically everything you do in yoga is engaging your core, from core-centric poses to moving from pose to pose, using your core to stabilize your body. And in different inversions and arm balances, yoga allows you to raise your heartbeat, strengthen your muscles, and lengthen them out all at once. How’s that for efficiency?

It can count as cardio. All you have to do is try a few sun salutations or any flow at a good, steady pace, matching your breath to your movement. Or, if you are a bit more adventurous, try some Kundalini kriyas (like the Kundalini frogs in the step-by-step breakdown of shoulder press pose.)

Yoga is not a competitive sport! I prefer yoga to the gym as I steer clear of anything that involves pitting myself against others. Isn’t there enough competition in work and in life in general? While some people thrive on trying to be the fastest in spin class or trying to run longer than the woman on the treadmill next to them, in yoga it doesn’t matter what any one else is doing. There is no comparing or competing because there is only you.

It saves money. In fact, yoga doesn’t have to cost a penny. All you need to practice is you. You can wear any clothes that allow you to move, and you don’t even need a yoga mat: grass and carpet work just fine. If you want some inspiration, there are plenty of great, inexpensive yoga DVDs or free online videos.

You can do it anywhere. With no equipment necessary, it doesn’t matter if you are at home, at your office, on the road—or even in the streets of NYC, as in the SHAPE Yoga Anywhere videos. So long as you have the desire, you can strike a few poses.

Yoga will help you lose weight. Practicing yoga changes your mind: It changes the way you approach life, your body, and eating. Yoga shows you how to appreciate your body for all of the amazing things that it can do for you and points you in the direction of wanting to fill your body with the best possible fuel rather than processed junk food. And changing your mind about your body and the foods you feed it will be a much more effective weight-loss tool than burning a bunch of calories in an aggressive kick-boxing class and then mindlessly plowing through equal or more calories later that day.

Hello, variety. Yoga can be different every single day, if you want it to be. Want a challenge? Throw some arm balances and inversions into your practice. Need to focus? Try a few balance poses sequentially on the same foot. Or if you’re seeking relaxation, hang out in pigeon, a few seated forward folds, and a restorative backbend.

No injuries. In yoga, you learn to unite your body and mind. This allows you to move with ease and pay attention to how your body is feeling at all times, so you move in a way that feels good for you and not one that puts you in places your body doesn’t want to be. The result? An injury-free, strong, healthy, whole you.

In all fairness, I realize that this is a pretty one-sided argument (okay, a totally one-sided argument). But, for those who ask, “What else you need other than yoga?” I say: If you are going to chose one over the other, chose the one that saves you time, saves you money, makes you feel great, and helps you lose weight.

SENT IN BY YOU

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How to keep children entertained during the holidays

Keeping children entertained in the holidays

Knowing how to keep children amused through the school holidays can sometimes be daunting for parents, especially when things cost so much. Family Lives have come up with some top tips to help take some of the stress out of it, and keep everyone happy without needing to spend a fortune.

Going out and about

During the school holidays, there may be lots going on in your local area that your family can enjoy, often for free. Check the websites of your local council and tourist information centres for local days out, or scan the local papers and community centres to see what’s going on in your area. Visit your local library and look for adverts of events. Many libraries hold events such as story time, and arts and crafts days. Libraries are also a great source of activity in themselves, with plenty of books and computers to keep children busy, plus they often have story time for toddlers and parents.

  •  

    Check to see if your local council swimming pool offers free or reduced-fee entrance in the school holidays.

  •  

    Musuems and galleries often have new exhibitions and events running in the summer. Many art galleries put on special events for children and families – this could be just the thing to stimulate your child’s artistic streak.

  •  

    Check out your local leisure centre – there are plenty of indoor sports and activities they can participate in.

Staying at home

Of course, on some days, you will find yourselves stuck at home, but that doesn’t mean anyone has to be bored. You could take the opportunity to spend some time sharing a favourite game or story with your children or, if you want some more inspiration, try some of these activities.

  •  

    Arrange a movie day – choose a couple of favourite films, get some popcorn and put your feet up with the kids.

  •  

    Get cooking – pick a recipe with the kids, go shopping for ingredients and cook something together that you can enjoy eating afterwards. Depending on your child’s age and interest, this could be anything from a simple sponge cake to a mushroom stroganoff! Dig out the puzzles, games and books and give them a go. Some good old-fashioned entertainment can be really fun.

  •  

    Have a look in your cupboards and play dress up with your old clothes. Sort through your clothes together and recycle the ones that you never wear and the stuff your little one’s grown out of.

  •  

    Encourage the kids to put on a play or a magic show. They could even use the dress up clothes and props from around the house. If you have a camera, you can even film it, for great memories.

  •  

    Build a den with the kids – if the weather is ok, you could even risk doing this outside! All you need is some boxes or sofa cushions, a few blankets, and a bit of imagination.

  •  

    Create a scrapbook together using photos from your family album, or torn from magazines.

The great outdoors (and the garden!)

Sunny days are great for simple activities like picnics and ball games. This can be done as close to home as in the back garden!

  •  

    Organise a treasure hunt around your home and garden with clues and treats for the children to find

  •  

    Hold your own mini Olympics with games that require little equipment… a sack race with pillowcases, a tug of war with a dressing gown belt! Use your imagination.

  •  

    If outside is dry, wrap up and go to the park or a nice walk somewhere quiet with the children with a flask of hot chocolate – sure to go down a treat!

  •  

    If you have a tent, you could arrange a camping trip in your garden with the children for one night! 

  •  

    Kites are great if it is a windy day and they can be bought from bargain shops very cheaply

Making your own fun

Be creative – make things together like greeting cards or use beads to make some jewellery.

  •  

    Have an arts and craft day and get some canvas and paints, they can be bought in bargain shops for as little as a pound and use paints or crayons and the kids can hang up their creations in their rooms.

  •  

    Make a list of your favourite childhood games – old favourites such as hopscotch, putting on a show or marbles won’t cost the earth and your children will enjoy you reminiscing!

  •  

    In the evenings get the kids to design a game that you can make the next day – give them ideas to keep it simple such as a paper boat race in the paddling pool or home made skittles using a tennis ball and empty toilet rolls.

  •  

    Have you ever thought about Origami? All you need is paper and instructions which can be found online, will keeps kids amused and they will learn a new skill

Don’t try and fill every minute of every day. Encourage your children’s imagination and independence – let them play in their rooms or the garden.

WHAT ARE YOU GOING TO DO IN THE SCHOOL HOLIDAYS?

LEAVE YOUR COMMENTS HERE

THANK YOU FOR YOUR HELP 

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Mango & passion fruit smoothie

Mango & passion fruit smoothie

Cooking time

Prep:10 minsNo cook

Skill level

Easy

Servings

Serves 4

A tropical fruit blend to start the day the nutritious way – full of vitamin C and low in fat too

Additional info

  • Gluten-free

Nutrition per serving

kcalories
121
protein
6g
carbs
23g
fat
1g
saturates
0g
fibre
3g
sugar
22g
salt
0.2g
Ingredients
  • 400g/14oz peeled and chopped ripe mango
  • 2 x 125g pots fat-free mango yogurt
  • 250ml skimmed milk
  • juice 1 lime
  • 4 passion fruits, halved

Method

Whizz the mango, yogurt and milk together in a blender until smooth. Stir in the lime juice, then pour into 4 glasses. Scoop the pulp of a passion fruit into each one, and swirl before serving.

 WHY NOT SEND US A RECIPE OR TWO AND SHARE YOUR IDEAS

Send to:poetreecreations@yahoo.com we will then post it here.

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yellb












We stopped for gas; the mini-mart
Was advertising wares.
I wasn’t hungry, had no thirst
And so I thought, who cares?

But then a sign jumped out at me;
I wondered – is it true?
Just buy this brand of water
And we’ve got a gift for you – 

A free banana! I said, Huh?
This seems a bit surreal.
But hey, I guess, to some at least,
There must be some appeal
by ilene bauer

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