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One more sleep before we fly out!

Monday, February 21, 2011

I am getting very excited about tomorrow! Mind you, it's already tomorrow and I haven't gone to bed, lol. I am all packed and ready to leave home at 3pm for the airport. My DS is driving us there. I bet he'll be glad to have the house to himself for the next 3 weeks. emoticon

I've had a very busy day today. DH came from tennis yesterday and asked whether I knew that we had to have some vaccinations before flying to Argentina. That was news to me. emoticonIt turned out, he was correct. We need SEVEN vaccinations and one is COMPULSORY- Yellow Fever. We can't get back into Australia without it!

So this morning I made 3 phone calls trying to find a clinic that can give them all to us. It wasn't so easy but eventually we found one in Wheelers Hill about 30 min from our home. The appointment was for 4pm but we left earlier, so as not too be late in the afternoon traffic and got there 25 min before the scheduled time. Wouldn't you know, we didn't get to see the doc until 4:30! We ended up with 4 injections each, two in each arm and some malaria tablets to take daily for the next 6 weeks! The bill for the dr visit plus the meds/jabs came to almost $800! emoticonI hope I get some money back from the insurance.

This morning we had time to go to our bridge class and a couple of people told us that they enjoyed cruising on Celebrity Cruises ships and one girl went on Infinity and had a ball. I hope we will too.

Nan, I am going to be making notes about everything so I can report then to you Mum.

I am taking my little pink Netbook and will try to post from Argentina if I get free access.

Bye for now. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OPALMOON 2/22/2011 7:58AM

    I sure hope you get something back on your health insurance too!

Have a wonderful and safe trip Ania!

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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AIDELADE27 2/21/2011 11:13PM

    Have fun on your trip! Can't wait to hear all about it!

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PATJ7084 2/21/2011 4:26PM

    have a wonderful trip, hugs Pat emoticon

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GOANNA2 2/21/2011 4:23PM

    Bon Voyage Ania.
Wow, I hope you get some$s back from
your insurance.
You will have a fantastic time.
Looking forward to hearing all about it.

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PHEBESS 2/21/2011 3:40PM

    Have a wonderful trip! And I hope you feel okay after all those inoculations!!!

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ROCKYCPA 2/21/2011 1:24PM

    Sounds wonderful - have a great trip. Blog so we can hear all about it.

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SEYSARAH 2/21/2011 12:16PM

    Ania I had no idea how many vaccinations etc one had to take...expensive and not all that fun I'm sure.

I look forward to when you are back and let us all know how it was..mother is super interested and who knows..she's about due for a cruise and might very well love that.

Have a wonderful time..will be missing you but know you are having quite an adventure!!!!

Travel safe!

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JOPAPGH 2/21/2011 11:43AM

    Have a great time! keep up posted on the sights and sounds you see!

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TOBEARUNNER 2/21/2011 11:35AM

    How exciting Ania! I look forward to receiving your texts from all over! The Dragons will leave the light on for when you return!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 2/21/2011 11:35:51 AM

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*MADHU* 2/21/2011 10:57AM

    Have a safe and wonderful trip will be missed amongst the Dragons emoticon

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MINNA72 2/21/2011 10:43AM

    How cool! Enjoy your vacation!

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LINDENSGIRL 2/21/2011 10:10AM

    Happy Landings! Have a great trip.

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LIZZYP609 2/21/2011 9:37AM

    emoticon Time! I am so excited for will be missed in the Lair!
Have a BLAST! Too bad about the $$$ for the vaccinations! Luckily you got them in before leaving though!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Observations on Growing Older!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

~Your kids are becoming you...and you don't like them
...but your grandchildren are perfect!

~Going out is good.
Coming home is better!

~When people say you look "Great"...
they add "for your age!"

~When you needed the discount you paid full price.
Now you get discounts on everything ...
movies, hotels, flights, but you're too tired to use them.

~You forget names ... but it's OK
because other people forgot
they even knew you!!!

~The 5 pounds you wanted to lose
is now 15 and you have a better chance
of losing your keys than the 15 pounds.

~You realize you're never going
to be really good at anything .... especially golf.

~Your spouse is counting on you
to remember things you don't remember.

~The things you used to care to do,
you no longer care to do,
but you really do care that you
don't care to do them anymore.

~Your spouse sleeps better on a lounge chair
with the TV blaring than he does in bed.
It's called his "pre-sleep".

~Remember when your mother said
"Wear clean underwear in case you GET in an accident"?
Now you bring clean underwear in case you HAVE an accident!

~You used to say,
"I hope my kids GET married ...
Now, "I hope they STAY married!"

~You miss the days when everything worked
with just an "ON" and "OFF" switch..

~When GOOGLE, ipod, email, modem ...
were unheard of, and a mouse was something
that made you climb on a table.

~You used to use more 4 letter words ...
"what?"..."when?" ???

~Now that you can afford
expensive jewelry, it's not safe to wear it anywhere.

~You read 100 pages into a book before you realize you've read it.

~Notice everything they sell in stores is "sleeveless"?!!!

~What used to be freckles are now liver spots.

~Everybody whispers.

~You have 3 sizes of clothes in your closet ....
2 of which you will never wear.

~~~~But old is good in some things:
old songs
old movies
And best of all OLD FRIENDS!

Friends don't let friends go
through trials alone!
My Spark Friends! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OPALMOON 2/21/2011 3:55AM

    What a hoot!!

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JUDYBUGS 2/20/2011 11:53PM

    You made me think of things that cross my path every day. emoticon

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MILLISMA 2/20/2011 9:04PM

    Thanks for making me emoticon

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GOANNA2 2/20/2011 3:27PM

    Thanks Ania. Brought a laugh to this old fogey too! emoticon

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PATJ7084 2/20/2011 2:38PM

    very funny, thanks emoticon

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*MADHU* 2/20/2011 12:48PM

    Now that I am turning 30 this year, these are emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MINNA72 2/20/2011 12:36PM

    This was funny! Thanks for sharing, Ania!

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PEGGYO 2/20/2011 8:06AM

    Thanks for sharing.

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SEYSARAH 2/20/2011 7:38AM

    Your blogs are a staple in my necessary reading on Spark..they make me laugh, think, educate me and so on...thanks so much for taking the time to blog...I will miss these daily "pearls" when you go on holiday but hope you have a great time and come back ready to resume the has benefitted me and others a lot..thanks so much!

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Why simple is best!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

How many foods do you eat that truly resemble their source? Getting back to basics and eating foods in their natural form is a great way to boost health and lose weight.

Minimally processed foods have a number of benefits: they are usually higher in fibre and nutrients and lower in fat and sugar.

Choose fresh fruit emoticonand veg emoticonand non-processed meats. emoticonEat plenty of wholegrain foods. Choose brown rice or quinoa over more processed versions.

Be a smart shopper: when it comes to processed foods, select the item with the shortest ingredients list - and with ingredients that you recognise. If it's got a long, scientific-sounding name or lots of numbers, give it a miss.

If it looks like a food, smells like a food and tastes like a food, it should be on your plate. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ILOVEROSES 2/18/2011 5:00PM

    Candis, it's been hot and humid here and I've been eating lots of emoticon

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CANDIS799 2/18/2011 3:55PM

    We all need this reminder every now and then! Thanks. Makes me want spring to hurry up and get here so I can plant my veggie garden!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Wish I could grow ice cream cones, too ....

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OPALMOON 2/18/2011 2:25AM

    Love my fresh fruit and veggies! It is amazing how many chemicals are in processed foods - nothing beats natural!

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SEYSARAH 2/17/2011 10:45PM

    Just reading your blog has inspired me to start making my grocery list for the top..produce of course!

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MILLISMA 2/17/2011 9:21PM

    That's why I spend most of my time in the fruit and veggie isle!

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PHEBESS 2/17/2011 9:53AM

    That's what I loved about the food in Italy - simple and flavorful and FRESH!

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GOANNA2 2/17/2011 9:30AM

    I love simple food.
Greek food is really simple and I am
finding I am cooking more of the food
I grew up with. My gran knew what she
was talking about. She didn't even use cans...

Thanks Ania. emoticon

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A Cuppa a Day keeps the Dentist Away!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Did you know that tea is one of the highest sources of fluoride in the diet? What a delicious way to improve dental health! emoticonDrinking a cup of black, white or green tea will deliver this important mineral. emoticon
Fluoride helps attract calcium and other minerals to harden the enamel of the teath, known as remineralisation. But the fluoride must be present in the saliva.
Tea also contains antibacterial substances that reduce the amount of acid-producing bacteria that causes cavities. So drink tea, as well as brushing and flossing, to protect those pearly whites. It's just what the dentist ordered. emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

OPALMOON 2/16/2011 7:38PM

    Love a good cup of tea!

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MILLISMA 2/16/2011 5:06PM

    Thank you Dr Ania emoticonI knew tea had a lot of benefits but did not know this one.

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GOANNA2 2/16/2011 4:20PM

    Thanks Ania.
I do so love my green tea and I wonder if there
is a difference when one adds milk to black tea.
emoticonJoinh me for a cuppa...

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PHEBESS 2/16/2011 12:23PM

    I'll drink to that!

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SOUL_LOVE 2/16/2011 12:12PM

    what a great tea is delicious!
emoticon emoticon

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*MADHU* 2/16/2011 8:45AM

    I am incorporating this tip... emoticonfor sharing Ania!

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ILOVEROSES 2/16/2011 1:08AM

    Glad you learned something new Nan. To tell the truth, it was news to me too, that's why I thought others might appreciate it too.

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SEYSARAH 2/16/2011 1:05AM

    I had no idea..thanks so much for sharing this information!

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A New Way to Keep Memory Sharp as the Brain Ages.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Test yourself on jokes, names, other information.

How often have you heard a funny joke, only to later forget the punch line? If your memory for jokes and other important information isn't as sharp as it used to be, stop doubting yourself and start quizzing yourself instead.

Testing yourself on information you are trying to remember whether it's a punch line, the name of a person you just met or the request your boss made is one of the best ways to make sure that information sticks, research shows. In a recent study comparing different strategies for studying for a short science test, college students did best when their studying involved taking practice tests on the material, the researchers reported Jan. 20 in the journal Science.

Answering test questions requires retrieving information from memory, and that is more useful than merely reviewing the material, report psychologist Jeffrey Karpicke and Janell Blunt of Purdue University. Good test questions require students to reconstruct what they know, which itself enhances learning, the team reports.

Despite the popularity of playing "brain games" to build mental muscle, games tend to strengthen only the specific skills used in that particular game, recent studies have found. Testing yourself, on the other hand, will help you remember information longer, according to Henry Roediger III of Washington University and Andrew Butler of Duke University, in an article in the Jan. 15 issue of Trends in Cognitive Science. Experiments have shown that taking a test can more than triple a person's recall, relative to only studying the material, they write.

The how-to of self-testing.

Testing works equally well if someone tests you or you test yourself. Here's how it works: Before you go into a party (or any event) where you will be introduced to new people whose names you want to remember, remind yourself to test yourself. Then when you first meet someone, use that old trick of saying the person's name right away even if it's just "nice to meet you, Sam." After a minute or so, say the name to yourself. Repeat as needed, gradually increasing the time between self-quizzes to up to about 10 minutes.

"You want to wait long enough that it's difficult to retrieve it, but while you can still get at it," says David Balota of Washington University. "The best procedure is to learn what works with your memory."

If you are reading something that you really want to remember, don't bother rereading it numerous times, says David Gallo of the University of Chicago. Instead, read it once, then re-quiz yourself. Consider making flash cards, a time-honored self-testing technique.
It also helps to talk about what you are trying to remember. At a party, you and your spouse or friend can check in with each other and review names of people you just met. Or if you and your spouse like to read aloud to each other interesting snippets from the newspaper, next time just put the information in your own words. Then double-check to make sure you got all the facts straight. As you get older, doing an accuracy check is key, researchers say. Because of age-related changes in the brain, older people are less likely than younger people to recall details, which makes them more susceptible to remembering incorrectly, says Gallo.

Why retesting works.

Testing and retesting yourself helps because of the memory cues we form when trying to remember information, a study in the Oct. 15, 2010, issue of Science shows. When you test yourself repeatedly, you are more likely to remember your memory cues and they are more likely to trigger your memory, researchers report. Also, successfully recalling those cues may make them easier to remember over time. Finally, getting something wrong on a test may force the brain to shift to a more effective cue.

In the study, researchers asked college students to memorize pairs of words in Swahili and English. The researchers encouraged all the students to think of memory cues, which in this case were words that looked or sounded like the Swahili word but meant something similar to the English word. A hint for the pair "wingu-cloud" could be "wing," for example.

On a final exam one week later, students who had been assigned to take practice tests on the word pairings scored better than those who had only restudied the pairs, Katherine Rawson of Kent State University and Mary Pyc of Washington University report. Rawson says their findings apply to older people as well. The importance of these cues is good news for older people, because research shows that aging doesn't impair a person's ability to use them, says Rawson.

Gallo puts everything he needs to remember in his iPhone or e-mail. He tries using memory triggers, such as forming an image of what he needs to remember, "but the problem is I always forget to do that," he says. And he's only 35.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MILLISMA 2/14/2011 3:50PM

    Great info Ania. There are some websites I like to go to that test your memory. I have to clean out the cobwebs so that it will work better.

Happy Valentine's Day emoticon

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OPALMOON 2/13/2011 3:58PM

    Thanks for sharing Ania...and I love the punch line!!

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SUSIEPH1 2/13/2011 1:59PM

    Great article Ania Thank you my friend!!
Have a wonderful Valentines day! emoticon

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SEYSARAH 2/13/2011 11:48AM

    Thanks for sharing this information..there was a recent article on the Spark site "health articles" and it talked a bit about this but not as in was as your is, current information..very useful!

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PEGGYO 2/13/2011 11:44AM

    Very interesting.

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