Posts Tagged ‘fun facts’

challenge accepted

you ask, i answer

yesterday’s post on ridding the garden of pests by using nasturtium sparked a comment from a reader:

“… I need help on what to plant in my back yard in between the rocks that hold the hill up. Gets a lot of sun and since we are high desert very dry. I want a plant that has some color but not totally clinging to the rocks. Do you accept this challenge? …”

why, yes i do!

now, i happen to know this reader personally, so i was able to figure out that their town lies in zone 6b for gardening – makes the challenge a wee-bit easier, being im in the same zoneĀ  šŸ˜‰

i had initially suggested sedum/succulents… i have them in the rock garden i have been building over the years that resides under an overhang of our house, getting little to no water and is in the full sun most of the day, we may not be in the ‘desert’ but it seems pretty desert-y under there. the colors, shapes and size varieties that are available are great!

so, im sticking to my first response – check out some of these options below:

Sedum ‘Variegatum’ Stonecrop
zone 3-9
height 4-5″
full sun
low-growing, pale green succulent leaves tinged with white and pink
orange-yellow flowers in June to July

Sedum ‘Autumn Joy’ Stonecrop
zone 3-9
height 18-24″
full sun
gray-green leaves with rose-colored flowers in August that fade to brick red in October
needs to be planted in full sun in well-drained soil, it will tolerate most soil types and is drought resistant

Sedum ‘Cauticola’ Stonecrop
zone 4-9
height 3-5″
full sun
great groundcover
purple-edged blue-gray-green foliage, flowers are pink in late summer and age to reddish-pink
a spreader
well suited for hot, dry, sunny areas and works well in many different soil types

Sedum ‘Matrona’ Stonecrop
zone 3-9
height 18-24″
full sun
shiny-red stems that are lined with blue-green leaves
broad flower heads of maroon to pale pink appear in late summer, become chestnut-brown in winter
prefers dry soil, drought resistant
a great butterfly and bee attractor

Sedum ‘Vera Jameson’ Stonecrop
zone 3-9
height 9-12″
full sun
deep purple leaves and dusty pink flowers appearing in late summer and last in fall
a wonderful ground cover
new growth shows blue-green leaves that turn into deep mahogany red in the fall
tolerates most soil types and is drought resistant
excellent as cut flowers – another great butterfly and bee attractor

there are so many more out options available, but that’s just a handful to get started with

and yes, little missy, i expect some pictures once all of these – and then some – are planted!!

power foods

looking for an energy boost to aid in your workouts?

you don’t have to rely on the gimicky snacks, chomps, gels and whatnot they sell on the market, you can easily find it right at the food store –>

for carbs
used mid-sesh

two tablespoons of raisins pack more than 30 grams of carbs, making them ideal for snacking during workouts an hour or longer. when eaten alone, they decrease mouth acidity, helping to prevent harmful bacteria growth that may lead to tooth decay! dentists rejoice

for potassium
used post-sesh

these fun-guys :0) supply potassium crucial for body fluid balance. contain an antioxidant known as L-ergothioneine not found in many foods and known to help fight off free-radical damage.

for healthy fats

One tablespoon supplies your daily need for omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acidsā€”essential for heart health, as well as controlling inflammation that may lead to diseases, such as Alzheimer’s. store it in a dark container in the fridge and use for dipping, in dressings, or tossed with pasta or steamed veggies.

for a source of lower-fat protein AND iron

high-protein red meat is lower in saturated fat than beef but packed with many of the same nutrients. each 3.5-ounce serving contains more than 50 percent of your vitamin B12 needs and 30 percent of your needs for iron and zinc–all necessary for muscle function and recovery.

for inflammation fighting

contain antioxidants called anthocyanidins which halt oxidative damage that occurs with aging, and may stave off muscle soreness.

for more carbs

provide fiber and B vitamins to energize your runs.

for extra nutrition at a low cost

a one-cup serving of most canned beans supplies over 25 percent of your Daily Value for protein, almost 60 percent for fiber, and 20 percent for iron, along with a good dose of carbs.

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cartoon voices revealed

Yoda and Miss Piggy’s voice comes from the same person?!

…who woulda thunk…

70 years ago today

take a few moments from your busy lives today to remember just how much the world changed 70 years ago. before December 7th, 1941, most Americans believed that there was little need to concern themselves with foreign conflicts

the infamous Japanese sneak attack claimed the lives of nearly 2,400 servicemen and women. our freedom today is owed in large part to the men and women who gave their lives at Pearl Harbor, and those that followed them into battle afterwards


foods to help heal injuries faster

we’re talkin physical activity based injuries, not the scrapes, burns and cuts kinda thing

runners especially will get injured at least once in their career – be it a sore tendon, a muscle pull, plantar fasciitis… the list goes on!

besides hitting up the doc, home healing, or whatever it is you do when you get injured, what you eat can play a really large role in helping your injury heal faster

how to do it?

don’t think skipping any meals will help just because you aren’t pounding the pavement at the rate you used to be, when you are injured your metabolism actually goes up because your body is requiring more calories to build new tissue to repair muscles and tendons… so eat at least every five hours to keep your energy levels up!

after an injury your body begins to break down more protein than it can keep up with making, this causes the injured muscle to atrophy = not a good thing for healing… so to combat this add quality protein to your diet – such as eggs, chicken, lean beef, pork, soy and low-fat dairy – your body will use the amino acid leucine to prevent some of the protein loss

these essential fats are great for good joint and heart health, but while you are injured they also suppress inflammation that puts a hamper on the whole healing process. eat at least two servings of something rich in omega-3s a day – such as seafood, walnuts, or flaxseeds

bones need vitamin D to rebuild them, especially after a stress or regular fracture, but by not being outside as much in the winter months to soak up the sunlight that causes your body to produce this, taking a supplement or upping your vitamin D rich foods like canned salmon and milk = what your body needs to heal faster

another inflammation suppressant, by eating quercetin rich foods like blueberries, oatmeal, red and white onions, apples and kale, your body will receive this potent antioxidant to let it work its magic on your muscles during recovery

what else can you do?

by cutting out or limiting these items in your diet, you’ll also boost your recovery time–>

reduces your muscles protein building abilities

your bodies efficiency in processing sugary cards lowers during injuries

these contain high levels of omega-6 fatty acids, unlike omega-3s, these actually increase inflammation


white vs dark

now that you had your fill of turkey, sides, and a couple of tastings from each dessert, wouldn’t you like to know how the age old ‘white meat vs dark meat theory’ lines up?!
yes, i spared sending this BEFORE thanksgiving so you it wouldnt be in the back of your mind – MWAHAHA

turkey is low in fat, high in protein and an inexpensive source of iron, zinc, phosphorus, potassium and B vitamins

a lot of people avoid dark meat, thinking it’s not quite as healthy as white, but depending on your nutritional needs, a big ol’ drumstick might be for you. dark meat does pack more calories per serving, not to mention an increase in cholesterol, than what’s found in white meat, but its far higher in iron. so if you’re craving a leg, go for it, but take off most of the skin.

this info is based off of the ‘usual’ serving size of roasted turkey, which is about 3.5 ounces (the size and thickness of a deck of cards):

Iron: White meat = 1.57 mg. Dark meat = 2.4 mg
Zinc: White meat = 2.08 mg. Dark meat = 4.3 mg
Folate: White meat = .01 mcg. Dark meat = 10 mcg

im off to decorate the house for the holidays!

whats behind this THANKS-giving?

i know we all learned thisĀ (or should have) at some point in time in school… what is the real meaning behind Thanksgiving?

in the early fall of 1621, the 53 surviving pilgrims and many native Americans celebrated their successful harvest, as this was the English custom. this day is remembered as The First Thanksgiving, however, in Plymouth, Pilgrims did not call this harvest festival Thanksgiving, although, they did give thanks to God – to them, a day of thanksgiving was purely religious

in 1623, after the harvest crops were gathered in November, Governor William Bradford in Plymouth, Massachusetts announced:

“All ye Pilgrims with your wives and little ones, do gather at the Meeting House, on the hillā€¦ there to listen to the pastor, and render Thanksgiving to the Almighty God for all His blessings.”

this really got the ball rolling – on November 1st, 1777, by order of Congress, the first National Thanksgiving Proclamation was proclaimed, and signed by Henry Laurens, President of Continental Congress. the third Thursday of December, 1777 was officially set aside to celebrate the day

Ā then again, on January 1st, 1795, our first United States President, George Washington, wrote his famed National Thanksgiving Proclamation and Thursday, February 19th 1795 was set aside by George Washington as a National Day of Thanksgiving… whud up with all of the flip flopping?!

Statue of Abraham Lincoln, Lincoln Memorial, Washington, D.C. Photo courtesy of Wallbuilders.

and because things just can’t BE, many years later, on October 3rd 1863, Abraham Lincoln proclaimed, by Act of Congress, an annual National Day of Thanksgiving on the last Thursday of November, as “a day of Thanksgiving and Praise to our beneficent Father who dwelleth in the heavens.”

148 years later, no changes have been made to this… hopefully it stays that way!