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Confessions of a not-so-terribly-fat fat person - inspired by Esther!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

OK, my attitude began to change a good while ago, but I've finally decided I should 'fess up publicly.

Esther's blog today hit me like a big two-by-four. She was talking about how she feels when under the scrutiny of those who don't know how much weight she's already lost and how hard she has worked to get there. I can in no way convey how accurately she portrayed her feelings -- please go to her blog (@CALLIKIA)

and read what she has to say. Other spark friends have written eloquently about this issue too, and their stories have moved me also. But somehow, Esther's blog made me think, "SAY it!"

So I will.
I used to be somewhat like those people. emoticon
True, I was overweight myself, but not as noticeably. emoticon

And when I thought critical thoughts, I was a complete hypocrite, since I wasn't making much attempt to control my own weight. But for the grace of God and fortunate metabolism - plus the fact that singing came along and woke me up to the state of my own body when I was nearly 30 years old -- I could easily weigh 200-300 pounds or more.

Well, I just want to say, NO MORE, NEVER AGAIN will I think hurtful things. I know that even if we think them, somehow they are felt.
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Spark has made a permanent change in me - in this as in many other ways. At this point I think that people who tend to gain weight are some of the world's MOST WONDERFUL PEOPLE! They (we, if you will allow me to include myself) are sensitive and caring and intelligent and often have a wonderful offbeat perspective that has possibly made it hard for them to fit in/blend in/conform in life. And perhaps that is part of the reason why they (we) have all gained weight in the first place.


And we should NEVER forget that.

Sparkfriends with a lot of pounds left to lose are at this point my heroes (or heroines!) and when I see a large person walking on the street or in the supermarket, or riding one of the carts, I am now much more likely to perceive their beauty.

I am much less likely to judge them.

I am more likely to say a little prayer that they be strengthened to know their own worth and protected from patronizing or hurtful remarks.

I haven't heard anyone making nasty remarks -- but at this point, I think if I did, I would stand up and PICK A FIGHT. At this point I do have a few muscles...

Anyway, you get the idea. I know this does absolutely nothing to smooth the way of heroines like Esther who are running 5Ks and 10Ks and still braving people's rude stares and still keeping on keeping on, even though the way seems incredibly long and rough. And working at it much harder than I have been able to...
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But I thought I would just go on record that at least ONE of those people has changed, fundamentally and deeply. And it's because of YOU.

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

TEENY_BIKINI 11/24/2010 9:51PM

    Wow. Great blog. I know exactly what you mean. I am much more supportive now and much more willing to not just junp to conclusions now. I love how this magical place affects me in ways I did not anticipate.

Rock on! You are doing great.

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CHIPPEE 11/18/2010 9:10PM

    Thank you for this wonderful, sensitve entry. emoticon

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CLAUDECF 11/18/2010 5:29PM

    What a remarkable blog. Quite a bit of food for thought here emoticon emoticon

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SARAWALKS 11/18/2010 2:54PM

    Thanks, y'all! I adore you too! And Esther, emoticon that profile photo! Sock it to 'em, girl!
I had a few weird moments last night after posting this, thinking, DUH, maybe this is just me and really not politically correct to say out loud, or something. and then I thought, what the hey, let 'er rip!
So emoticon
It is wonderful to know that we are all in this crazy life together, with all of our issues, and that that is just emoticon

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MAMADWARF 11/18/2010 10:19AM

    Good blog, Sara. I agree. I learned long ago not to judge peoples behavior or looks. When I was 19, I became a widow. I started drinking and drugs and alot of other "disgusting" behavior. I was trying to survive. People would tell me how awful I was, how I was dishonoring my husbands memory etc. but I learned that no 2 people grieve the same, look the same, deal with life the same. Everyone is jsut doing the best they can to survive (sometimes horrible ordeals). We can all learn to be more loving and understanding and less judgemental. It is a lesson I remind myself constantly. Thank you (and Esther).

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CALLIKIA 11/18/2010 10:11AM

    I adore you, my dear! Much in the same way you've been changing your thinking, I've been changing mine. I'm trying to remember that all people, no matter their size, struggles with body issues at some time or another. I cannot nag a skinny girl in my head just because she is skinny because I don't know her story. It's been a learning process, but also very freeing to feel not so isolated in the world!

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CELLO23 11/18/2010 6:47AM

    This is a wonderful blog - thanks for saying it out loud! We never really know what others' struggles are, do we? More and more I think there's a strong correlation between being hard on others, and being hard on ourselves - a snarky, hypercritical culture that is bringing us all down, making us dissatisfied with our lives, depressed etc. Your point about fitting in and non-conformists hit me too. It's so sad when people's contributions are squashed because others have louder voices. Lots to mull... emoticon emoticon emoticon

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Hang on, little tomato!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

This song popped up on my ipod when walking back from the store, and I thought it might cheer up some of my spark friends who are feeling a bit like they're "lost in deep confusion..."

It begins with an instrumental but then China Forbes starts to sing...

"Your sunny Sunday will come one day soon to you!"

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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BECOMINGJAMI 11/24/2010 3:16PM

    This is completely late, but I had to tell you that seeing this made my day! I find that we Oregonians are so proud of this group (and for good reason!) This is one of my favorite songs of theirs. It always manages to get my chin up and put a smile on my face, even if things are looking down.

You know, one of my good friends used to run their music library (and manages to score me tickets when they perform in Portland.)


Hope you're having a great day, and I hope your Thanksgiving is spectacular!

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SARAWALKS 11/14/2010 8:53AM

    emoticon emoticon So glad you enjoyed it! CJ, I had no idea they were from Oregon! YAY Oregon, lots of creativity up there! Must be all that rain... emoticon emoticon

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ESLTEACHER1 11/14/2010 5:05AM

    Oh how cute!! I'd never heard of them! perfect song to play through the winter when it's cold and dark outside. Thanks pookie!!


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CELLO23 11/14/2010 3:53AM

    Didn't know this song - lovely! We have to hang on through lots of emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon times too. Nice lyrics! Will go check out the Pink Martinis :) emoticon
@sara - no idea! did I? I just just clicked on 'add link' emoticon

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CLAUDECF 11/14/2010 3:23AM

    Loved it!

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CJWORDPLAY 11/13/2010 10:46PM

    Oh thank you Sarah, a perfect day for this song - And YAY for our home-towners, "Pink Martini"! When you're from Oregon you learn to sing through the the gray and rainy times and celebrate the sunny Sundays. emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 11/14/2010 12:25:19 PM

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SUSANS111 11/13/2010 8:00PM

    Thanks for the link. I love it! Its the perfect perk up for a gray day!

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SARAWALKS 11/13/2010 6:30PM

    Yes! emoticon Pink Martini! emoticon emoticon

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CHIPPEE 11/13/2010 5:34PM

    Ah! Another Pink Martini fan!!!! LOVE this song. Never thought of it in this context though. Leave it to you! emoticon emoticon emoticon (Bunch of little tomatoes, just hangin' on!)

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TRIGFROST 11/13/2010 5:19PM

    Never heard the song...Sorry...

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SARAWALKS 11/13/2010 4:27PM

    Now, Cello, how did you manage to embed that video? When I tried, it said, "no HTML!" emoticon

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My butt, my self!

Friday, November 12, 2010

I just thought of a great reward for me. Not too expensive but something I really do want. When I reach 135 lbs. I will shop for a black pencil skirt!

And this brings me to the history of me and MY BUTT.

I remember the exact moment I became self-conscious about my butt.

I was lying on my stomach on a neighbor's bed, talking to our neighbor and her daughter who was somewhat older than me, and all of a sudden one of them said, "Now THAT'S a rear end!" Until that exact moment, I had not really known I had a rear end bigger than anyone else's!

I knew that I was a couch potato and that I read all the time to escape having to listen to my mom's monologues and my dad's silences. It also helped me escape the teasing on the school bus, since after a while of vanishing into a book, most of the kids got bored with teasing me. I knew that I was different because I liked to find out about the world far away from where I lived, both in space and time. Most kids didn't give a crap. And I didn't give a crap about most of their preoccupations, so we were even.
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BUT I did NOT want to have a BIG BUTT! emoticon

So I learned how to tuck it under, but somehow that didn't really help. My butt still looked big every time I walked past a storefront window and saw my own reflection. There were no full-length mirrors in our house... emoticon

I will spare you the long in-between journey of struggle with my butt.

BUT I will simply say that it has been a real joy, as I have walked with my camera, with Leslie, with weighted vest, and as I have learned to run intervals, to watch MY BUTT SHRINKING!
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In fact, at this point, my tummy is a bit bigger than my butt, but IT IS SHRINKING TOO! emoticon

Pretty soon I will be in balance, top to bottom, front to back. That is all I care! I do not have to be skinny, or wear a bikini. But I would like to be non-bulgy, and have a butt proportionate to the rest of my self.

And you know, my SELF has been such a part of that journey. The me that loves to sit on the couch and read is still very much alive! But now she is more peripatetic and she loves to take breaks from reading and she loves to plan to MOVE! She is altogether happier because she has found friends, both here where I live and online, who share her interests and don't consider her odd when she doesn't particularly want to watch football...

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Maybe that's how it works!
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

ATREAT4ME 11/13/2010 9:33AM

    What a great post. Self-love is so evident that it makes me fall in love with you too. I have a huge grin just from reading the story of your wonderful, shrinking butt. Congratulations. You will rock that skirt in your new balanced self. Lovely!

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SARAWALKS 11/13/2010 9:05AM

    Love it, Esther! Never heard "Baby got BACK!" before! Butt I just looked in the mirror at my butt, and after reading all these comments, I thought to self, "cute butt, kiddo!" It's so nice that Hubs likes yours... emoticon

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CALLIKIA 11/13/2010 8:51AM

    Baby got BACK! Me too! *lol* It's a constant struggle, but Hubs always reminds me that he loves my big butt over my mom's no-butt, and he's super-glad I didn't inherit my butt genes (*lol*) from her! I can't wait until the lower half starts to look more in proportion to the upper half...but I've got more work to put in before that happens. Good job on shrinking that booty!

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SARAWALKS 11/13/2010 8:15AM

    Hee hee, Cello, emoticon !
Yes, curvy butt, that's what I got!
Pics upcoming when I reach the goal and find The Skirt... emoticon

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CELLO23 11/13/2010 7:50AM

    I'm so glad you're expanding that self and would like to emoticon that girl for saying such a thing. These little thoughtless comments can brand themselves so deep, yet have absolutely no basis in reality (see Claude). Plus, curvy butts can look amazing in pencil skirts - think of Mad Men!
Can relate so well to the emoticon girl - life takes off when you finally find people who share that.
To the shrinking butt: so long, farewell! adieu! emoticon And let's see those pix! emoticon

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SARAWALKS 11/12/2010 10:31PM

    Thanks, everyone, for the fun comments! emoticon
Susan, it is "gaposis" that REALLY motivates me, nearly as much as the skirt! It is SUCH a pain.
Janis, I think that exercise really HAS made a big difference. I never saw a dramatic change like this before I started doing the Leslie DVDs AND the food tracking! They go together so well... emoticon

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CHIPPEE 11/12/2010 6:29PM

    I LOVE this. And I totally understand. I probably won't ever be able to wear a pencil skirt. Even at 116 when I got married I couldn't wear one. But (butt?) who knows...? maybe with exercise it'll be different this time if I ever make it down the scale that far.
Congratulations to you for closing in your goal. How exciting is that!!! emoticon

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SUSANS111 11/12/2010 5:41PM

    Ohhh! I love the way you said that!!

I wonder if my butt will ever shrink to the point where I don't have 'gaposis' of the waist band of all my pants. I hope so.

Here, here, to shrinking butts and liking things even when they don't fall into the mainstream interests!

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KAREN42BOYS 11/12/2010 4:02PM

    oh, this is a great blog! good for you for taking of your bum and yourself!

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BJW-FARMGIRL 11/12/2010 2:21PM

    emoticon Too cute!!

And you're almost there! Soon you'll be rockin' that skirt.

Comment edited on: 11/12/2010 2:23:23 PM

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MLRICHARD 11/12/2010 2:05PM

    Love the blog. Thanks for sharing. I have suffered with my rear as well. But thanks to lots of moving, it is reducing in size.

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SARAWALKS 11/12/2010 1:55PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 11/12/2010 1:56:20 PM

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CLAUDECF 11/12/2010 1:53PM

    Just love your conclusion, I think that last phrase is capital: self expanding.
To be perfectly honest, I didn't even notice you HAD a butt emoticon
You sure we're talking about the same person? emoticon

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Leslie Sansone Ultimate Collection - YES!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

All you folks who were interested in the Intensity Walk DVD (which may be hard to get now), listen up! The final segment of the Ultimate Collection is the same 4-mile super challenge walk that is on the Intensity DVD. However emoticon the other two Intensity segments that I liked so well are NOT here, and I don't know if they've been reissued or not. emoticon

However, this DVD is WORTH THE MONEY! emoticon
Even if you already have the other one, what it adds is great!

I emoticon the first 1-mile segment. BEST arms workout I have found on a Leslie DVD! She uses weighted balls but I used 2 lb. hand weights & by the end, my arms KNEW they had worked! emoticon

I like the fact that all these miles begin with warmup that's not too long (impatient me!) and end with cooldown that's equally time-efficient. emoticon

PLUS I like the bright blue tops that they're all wearing - AND I am happy that this is a different group of people. (Oh, I'm so judgmental - there's always one who irritates me & this time it's Mary Kay. But she's worse on the Intensity Walk DVD - or maybe it's just the goofy shorts she has on in that one...anyway, maybe you will like her!)

Second segment is 2-mile brisk walk, and they're all wearing hot pink. (Mary Kay is there!) This mile is not super-intense, just moderate -- good for a day when you're a little tired. They use the stretchy band for arms toward the middle of the 2nd mile, but they skip the triceps kickbacks. Some days, I don't WANT to do triceps kickbacks! emoticon

You can pump this mile up by doing the kicks with a boost - first time I did this segment, I found myself just doing that for fun! Amazing! emoticon

Third segment is 3-mile advanced walk. Aqua tops, and this one is from an older DVD, you can tell by the location. It's definitely advanced. Mile 2 really pumps it up. Pace slows down a bit in mile 3 where you get triceps kickbacks with the stretchy. Whew. Plus some deep chest work which could help your pushups... emoticon By the time she starts double kickbacks, you think, "Oh NO..." but emoticon and you usually survive! Slower pace helps.

Fourth segment is the 4-mile super challenge that I like so much from the Intensity Walk DVD. They're wearing black with a bit of white. This IS a challenge.

All in all, this DVD is a BEST BUY! emoticon You get 10 different miles, in very use-able combinations. Mile 1 is now my absolute fave mile for arms, which was my focus today. emoticon

Another plus is that some of the walkers chime in with remarks on this one, it's not just all Leslie. Although her patter on this one is mostly very much to the point and helpful - not quite as "folksy" as it can get.

The only down for me on this one is that stupid "WalkPowerWalk" song which begins segments 3 & 4. I'm glad she put that one to bed on later DVDs!

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emoticon Leslie for another emoticon DVD! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SARAWALKS 11/12/2010 10:36PM

    @Cello, thanks! Yes, I've come a long way and emoticon too!
@Claude - you WILL, you WILL! emoticon
@Chippee - I'm proud of YOU for trying them! You will emoticon them, I feel sure...
@Goingto - hearing Copacabana DOES make up for Walkpowerwalk to a great extent! I also like that other soulful electronic swing tune toward the end of the 4 mile challenge! emoticon

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CHIPPEE 11/12/2010 6:24PM

    Okay, now you've inspired me. I'm gonna put in my one LS dvd and do it this evening. Will be looking for this new one when I go shopping.
Keep up the good work. I'm so proud of you. emoticon emoticon

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CLAUDECF 11/12/2010 6:03AM

    I am so looking forward to the time when I can do LS again! emoticon

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CELLO23 11/12/2010 4:23AM

    You know you've come a long way, baby, when you say things like: 'Some days, I don't WANT to do triceps kickbacks!' emoticon emoticon

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SARAWALKS 11/11/2010 10:23PM

    Thanks, Trig, Susan, Michelle!
Susan, maybe this will help when things get nasty during the winter!
emoticon to all!

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    Thanks for sharing about that. That walkpowerwalk IS annoying, 'tis true....:)

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SUSANS111 11/11/2010 2:19PM

    Just finished the free 15 minute walk on line. I feel great!
Now I'm heading out for an outdoor walk with the 4 legged friends.

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TRIGFROST 11/11/2010 2:10PM

    I love Leslie ....Love to walk w/ her....on tapes that is... emoticon

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SUSANS111 11/11/2010 1:50PM

    You make these dvd's sound so good! I just went to Leslie's website and found a one mile freebie to stream. Here I go to put on my walking shoes. I may be headed out to buy a couple in the next half hour or so. Thanks for the motivation!

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Candied Grapefruit Peel!

Saturday, November 06, 2010

This one's for CHIPPEE! I made this a few nights ago and she asked how it was done. Turns out there are lots of different variations.

I used a recipe on Eating Well but changed it somewhat - maybe not for the better - but the peels still turned out yummy!

Here is a link to an even more complete recipe, with variations for peels in syrup and dried peels coated with sugar.

My approach was a bit easier and quicker.

I used 3 pink grapefruit, approx. 2 cups sugar, and 1/4 cup liquid (half reconstituted lemon juice, half water).

The original recipe said to use only 2 tsp. lemon juice - but I was afraid this would not be enough. I'll try this small amount the next time...

Scrub the grapefruit. Divide the peel into quarters by scoring the peel and then peeling it away from the fruit. I left the white pith since I like to eat that too, but some like to remove the pith. Save the fruit for breakfast!

Cut each quarter into 6-8 lengthwise strips.
Put peels in a large saucepan or wok and cover with cold water.
Bring to a boil, blanch for 1 minute, then drain. Repeat this 2 more times.

Here's what the blanched peels look like.

Then combine 1 cup of the sugar with lemon juice mixture and peels in the same pan.
Cook, stirring, over low heat until sugar is dissolved.

Simmer, stirring fairly often, until most liquid has evaporated - 30 to 45 minutes.

Let peels cool for several hours, on either a wire rack or wax paper. Wire rack would be better but I don't have one. so I layered wax paper in a square pan.

Roll in remaining sugar. You can do this after drying them - or after cooling them overnight in the fridge - or you actually could just eat them as they are!

I like the tartness that remains when you blanch them for only one minute. Others might prefer to cook them longer to get rid of that taste.

I think they would be very nice dried, but I am afraid to leave them overnight to dry, I think I might have a counter full of bugs feasting on the sugar!

Calories per piece: 25. 7 g carbs. 2 mg potassium.
I must admit they don't last me very long!
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  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SARAWALKS 11/10/2010 11:18AM

    @Esther - yes, I'm sure it would! In fact there's a candied orange peel recipe on spark recipes. You can candy most anything that is citrus. I just like the grapefruit best because of the thick peel and the nice bite-y taste! emoticon

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CALLIKIA 11/10/2010 10:04AM

    Hrm. I always wondered if anyone ever ate the peels to these foods. Do you think this would work with oranges too?

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TEENY_BIKINI 11/7/2010 2:40PM


Life is good and yummy. Thanks!

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CELLO23 11/7/2010 6:23AM

    Sounds tasty! emoticon Suspect I'd have to hide them!

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SUSANS111 11/7/2010 1:56AM

    Looks delish! They would make a plain dessert look gourmet as decoration for a special event.

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SARAWALKS 11/6/2010 8:13PM

    @HealthyArtist - Yes, I think it works with any peels!
@Chippee - I did the fridge thing but I had them in a container. I think maybe they need to be open to the air in order to dry properly...

Hope everyone enjoys them! They're actually fairly holiday-festive... emoticon

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CHIPPEE 11/6/2010 7:53PM

    Thanks so much. I'm going to have to make them. Maybe when I'm having company so I don't eat them all. I love grapefruit AND I love eating the rinds (since I was a kid). They look gorgeous too.
As far as drying them. You could probably dry them in the fridge. Refrigeration is based on evaporation, so it should dry it nicely while protecting from any little critters who might want to join you in the party! emoticon emoticon

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HEALTHYARTIST1 11/6/2010 7:06PM

    I wonder if this would work with orange peels, lemon peels, and my favorite would probably be lime peels! This sounds wonderful! emoticon

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SARAWALKS 11/6/2010 3:44PM

    Claude, I must confess that I've eaten quite a few of these since I made them...and since I wasn't quite sure how to track them...
they have just been responsible for my putting that same pound back on...
But then again, who cares? emoticon

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CLAUDECF 11/6/2010 3:40PM

    The sort of thing that would start me on a sugar urge! Looks good! emoticon emoticon

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SARAWALKS 11/6/2010 3:38PM

    Jenn, it is indeed SERIOUSLY GOOD!
and I just found an even better link - with the most complete nutritional info -
R>This also has a series of photos describing each step. I like the way it figures quantities also!

Happy eating! emoticon

Comment edited on: 11/6/2010 3:39:05 PM

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LADYZHERRA 11/6/2010 3:29PM

    OMG! OMG! OMG! I have GOT to try this! Thanks for posting! emoticon

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