BRAVELUTE   80,804
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Layered Salad in a Jar

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

I received a picture in my e-mail of a layered salad in a mason jar. It was beautiful. Now, I know some of you are already in the throes of winter, with gardens put to bed, and anything you have harvested already canned or in cold storage or frozen. And your outdoor produce markets won't be back till next summer.

But I know fresh fruits and veggies are still nearby. 2 years ago when I was snowed in at my house in NC, I went to Ingles the minute they plowed the road the day after Christmas. And to my amazement, they even had Florida oranges, lettuce, tomatoes, and an array of beautiful fruits and vegetables.
We kept alternating between soups and stews, and a beautiful, fresh salad.

So, if you are having a dreary day, a lunch salad packed in a mason jar might be exactly what you need.

The salad on the left features blackberries. The one in the middle has tangerines and cooked brussels sprouts which were roasted with orange juice. The one on the right has cooked beets and grated apple. That's the one I used to enter the recipe mentioned below.

I am happy every time I open the refrigerator and see those salads lined up and ready. They have solved many problems for me as I try to eat the required veggies on the Eat to Live Plan.

Lots of color, texture, taste, and nutrition when you sit down to eat.

Original site that sparked my creations:

I have entered my recipe in SP. You can access Sue's Salad in a Jar #1 in my recipe collection at

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

IRONBESS 8/8/2013 3:30PM

    Fun idea.

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MICKEYH 8/3/2013 10:19AM

    Great idea!! emoticon

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BOOKWORM27S 11/29/2012 9:03AM

    That is such a great idea!

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BRAVELUTE 11/28/2012 9:31PM

    Dotsonk, I think the idea is to make a pretty salad. The original creator talks about taking them to work. For me, I love layered salads, but when i make my recipe in a fancy glass bowl, I never get it eaten before it spoils.

With this, it's pretty, I eat the whole thing for lunch and nothing spoils.
The vegetarian ginger says they keep for about 3 days for her. I like that part because I can create 3 different salads, all at the same time, use up a mess of things I have on hand, and have the prep mess only once instead of daily. That helps me to readily eat more veggies, which doesn't come naturally to me yet. So I have a salad jar ready for Thursday and Friday.

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DOTSONK 11/28/2012 9:06PM

    Great idea! Do salads keep longer in jars?

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ANGEL1066 11/28/2012 4:41PM

    Great idea! Thanks! But when I tried the link to your personal recipe, I got an error notice. the link to original blog worked fine, but not to yours.

Comment edited on: 11/28/2012 5:06:50 PM

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MISSB8604 11/28/2012 3:18PM

    Very cool! Thank you!

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VIMEZA 11/28/2012 2:27PM

    wow that is some usefull information.. thanks i am going to try this!

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MAHGRET 11/28/2012 2:23PM

    Thanks for sharing.

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Walk ON!!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

My walking program has been on "hold" since September 4. I see the podiatrist Thursday, hopefully to be officially released. But I have been walking the last 2 weeks since the new orthotics were installed.

Today, I opened up the 5K walking tracker. I was in week 4, Day 2 with 2.5 miles to walk. So I gathered water, banana, and my camera and drove to the hospital near the lot on the bike trail where I refuse to pay the $3 fee to park.
And off I went. Beautiful, sunny day, 77 degrees.
1 block to the trail

I don't need to pay since I walked in. But I was surprised to see the air pump for bikers. I could ride my recumbent over here and not need to worry about those soft tires.

First hurdle, really the only one unless you count the sun beating down.

The overpass lets you cross highway 50 safely. I did a loop and will be crossing here without benefit of overpass in about an hour.

I found this cul de sac on the way down the overpass. I'll be able to park here the next time and won't need to pay OR brave getting across 4 lanes of traffic.

I used to live here, right on this trail.

Neighbor's horse in grassless pasture. I guess your ribs would be bony too if you were trying to find something to eat here.

Though I'm walking at noon, I can still find shady spots if I walk on the left. That's probably not the best spot since I have seen some bikers.

Ah, there's the fence with the gate where I can leave the trail.

I haven't been down this lane since 2006. Looks like it's not used for much except dumping.

Made it out to Grove Road. Straight ahead over two high fences is my home and the heated community pool where I wish I was right now!! No rest for the weary. I don't think I could make it over the fences, so I'd better head back to the car.

Walking back on Grove Road. Need to be careful. Cars fly down here 50-60 miles an hour.

Many people think the Spanish Moss hanging from this tree kills it. But the moss is an epiphyte, or air plant. It even grows on the electrical wires.

So I've circled around to the t-shirt that marks where I used to turn to go to the house back on the bike trail. I'm out of water, and my camera is out of power. One half mile more to go to get to the main highway and then a short parking lot at the hospital to get to my car.

When I tracked my trek, it was 2.75 miles. But the 5K training challenge wouldn't let me enter my mileage or minutes. I had to exit from that training program, though I was assured I could pick up from where I left off after I had my doctor's okay.

So, I left that program and started the training program again in Week 1, Day 1, walk 15 minutes. I Entered 2.75 miles, 80 minutes, on Week 1, Day 1. And that's okay, because I've never walked that far before at one time. And I'm pretty proud of myself. By the time this training program finishes I'll probably be ready for a 10K.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SAGELADY2 12/2/2012 6:44PM

    Great idea to document your walk with pics. I'll have to do that. I have a couple that are really pretty and I enjoy a lot. Wish there were palm trees where I walk now. We just have leafless ones now and piles of leaves to swish through, which is nice in its own way.

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LESLIELENORE 11/28/2012 2:16PM

    emoticon pictures were great, could really get a feel for the terrain. That poor horse!

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PKBOO3 11/28/2012 8:44AM

    Enjoyed watching you walk. Looks like it was very enjoyable!

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    Such beautiful photos -- especially the spanish moss.

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LINDA! 11/27/2012 6:31PM

    Well, that sounds like a lot of fun. Good pictures. I am also in Florida and love this great weather!! emoticon

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ANGEL1066 11/27/2012 5:10PM

    Sounds like a good workout to me! Good for you!

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Little Steps? Revisited

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Well, I got the mat, and actually did the rest of my push up steps. My sister would be saying "Form." I went down and up 10 times. I'm sure it wasn't far enough and I know my body didn't stay like a plank.

And I know I'll have to add, "go watch the SP push up video,

But I'm chalking this one up as a victory!!

Knickers is already in good form.

Jewels says, "I'll sleep on it."

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANGEL1066 11/27/2012 8:02PM

    Great job! Form is an ongoing process, always improvable. But what you did sure sounds like pushups to me!

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LESLIELENORE 11/27/2012 2:46PM

    I'm with Jewels.

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CHRISTINASP 11/27/2012 1:21PM

    Lovely post. Made me smile. GOOD FOR YOU for doing the pushups. I should follow your example.

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Little Steps? Feels like one GINORMOUS one . . .

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Okay, so I was procrastinating. Not to let the creative juices flow. I already had designed the angel project, found the handkerchiefs AND the wooden beads. I purchased the color coordinated ribbon, and even found the decorations I would use in place of the elusive miniature brass instruments.

After this morning, I decided that If the project seems to huge, impossible to finish, I never even start it. I have seen this behavior before in my students. It was amazing how immobilized some became when facing a new assignment that they felt they might not be successful at. I had to break it down into little steps. Like "1. Put your Name on your paper. 2. Put the word "Title" on the top line. 3. Skip a line. 4. Indent and write your topic sentence on the next line.

I'd actually give them the steps with check boxes by each one so they could check off each little part of the assignment. After a while, they no longer needed this kind of "crutch" for a daily class assignment. But they did need it for major projects like science fair projects or research reports, things which parents usually wound up doing for them or never got started.

Funny I didn't notice this type of need in me when I started my SP journey. I originally used the SP BMI calculator and computed the total amount of weight I needed to lose. And set up my long term goals and all the rest. Then I went back to my recliner. I did stay true to the water goal, but I was already doing that. I had no trouble with calories because I wasn't eating anywhere near what the range said I should. In fact I had trouble eating enough to meet minimum. The question kept popping up, HOW CAN I POSSIBLY lose over 100 pounds? I'll never do it.

Somehow, I decided to change my thinking. I switched everything over to keeping my goal as a short term goal. I know I need to lose over 100 pounds total, but that goal is not in front of me everytime I start my day with SP. It is not the goal I see on my ticker everytime I see one of my posts on a team or blog. And I handle that well and celebrate when that weightloss goal is met and set up the next mark to strive for.

This morning, I received in my e-mail, the SP "Best of SparkPeople" newsletter and I downloaded "30 Days & 30 Ways to Stay on Track."

Then I noticed that Mom2KAtniss's Status. She is focusing on little steps today. So I decided that little steps are needed in my life this week for the angel project and for my fitness. I thought, " I set myself a challenge to get the angel project done in little steps, actually writing down the steps and checking them off. And I just received a months worth of little SP steps. I'll just follow them and check off a box each day."

Well, then I actually read Day 1. I'm glad I read it today. That will give me time to break down Push Ups into little steps since I've never done one in my life. My other choice would be to go out of retirement and go back to work so I would have a co-workers desk to get up and walk to. That is not going to happen.

Push Up Break Down
1. Get the Bath mat for cushioning.
2. Kneel down on the mat.
3. Walk hands out until your body is stretched out, hands under shoulders.
4. Raise feet.
5. Bend elbows to go down slightly with your body like a plank.

If you wind up on the floor, you are not a failure. Go back to step 3-5 until you are able to stay up and push yourself back up in step 6.

6. Push yourself back up.

This feels like one mighty leap from the bottom of the stairs up to the landing. Hmmm. Might be easier to go back to work.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ANGEL1066 11/27/2012 7:58PM

    You are on the right track. Spark actually has ideas that help with pushups. You might try their wall pushups first. They are all I can do so far but still help. No staircase leaps for me! But I have been chipping away at disabilities for several years now, and savor each small victory. Love your angel project - hope it works well for you. God Bless!

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CHRISTINASP 11/27/2012 1:26PM

    Very inspiring. I may use your strategy next time I want to set a goal.

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LESLIELENORE 11/27/2012 10:05AM

    emoticon I break things down into smaller step too. I feel more assured of success that way.

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Lack of Focus, Procrastination, or Creativity?

Sunday, November 25, 2012

I love Ellen deGeneres' monologue on procrastination. She starts off discussing procrastination and before you know it she is off–procrastinating. You think she has lost focus, but since you like to laugh, you settle back to be entertained. And then all of a sudden, she zings right back to the main topic and you realize she has been on topic all along. The first time I watched her do this, I was amazed at her creativity.

I own the DVD and usually take it with me to NC where I tend to do more creative work without internet or TV or phone to interfere with my work. I write, paint, arrange music, sit on the porch and stare, listen to Christmas music in July, walk, visit folk school classes and events, drive through the mountains, and write, paint, and arrange music, in a very jumbled up order.

So I've been able to separate out the creativity from the procrastination which I now define as just plain not wanting to do it. I'll come up with all kinds of tasks that need doing to avoid decluttering or dealing with downsizing. To someone watching me, they might think I lack focus. But they just don't understand the effort involved in creatively avoiding those tasks.

But since SP I've also learned that those things that must be done are easier, even fun, if I do a little every day. My 15 minute playlists help me do that. Once I put that music on, I'm up and moving, throwing in a load of laundry, zipping here and there, dusting, mopping, returning things that somehow moved from the bedroom to the dining room, and clearing the counters.

When I watched the infomercial for Zumba DVDs this morning, I realized my routine was just one step down from being a 15 minute Zumba workout. Perhaps I should make a Housework DVD for Sparkers who want to find more time get online to send some sparks AND get a workout at the same time.

The only problem now is I know I'm creatively working on getting the inspiration, fuel, fodder . . . to get back to work on something but I can't remember what it was.

* * * * *

Haven't seen Ellen's "Procrastination monologue?" It is available on her "Here and Now" Video/DVD.

Buy the DVD: "Here and How" available for $5.43
at Amazon.

Watch on You Tube: Whole show:

If your system is slowed down by that one, here is the first 15 minutes:
The other 3 segments are there, just look in the side bar.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LUVLYLORELEI 11/25/2012 7:27PM

    I know what you mean about focus! Totally! Of course anytime I see something shiny ... ooooo I think I see something shiny! What was I doing? Oh yes, procrastinating!

Anyway, good idea about the 15-minute playlist. I could use that trick. Of course I'll need an hour or two to create a 15-minute playlist! Oh the irony! The funny thing is, I think it would be fun to create a 15-minute playlist, but that would mean actually making a decision. Hm. I'll think about it! But I really do love the idea!


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LESLIELENORE 11/25/2012 12:55PM

    That would be a fun DVD. I stay pretty focused most of the time, but there are times...

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BLUENOSE63 11/25/2012 8:00AM

  Thanks for the link!

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