100,000 or more SparkPoints
TRAVELNISTA's Recent Blog Entries

Are you sitting on the fence of life?

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Today's blog is actually asking all of you to go and read 2 blogs from a really good Spark Buddy of mine, Devora4 . She wrote an excellent blog yesterday that really touched my heart and what she said was oh so true. Her blog today kind of segwayed from yesterday. We can not be too wrapped up in our own journey, we also need to help others see the "light."

I hope you read her blog, "Where do you stand?" and vote for it as Popular Blog so that more Sparkers out there sitting on the fence will jump off and join in the quest for a healthier lifestyle. It is a shame because too many of them wait till tragedy happens to make that move. The link is:

Today's blog is, "Are you a Grey Person? That link is:

Please don't think you can or have to do this journey alone. I think one of the reasons I have been so successful on my journey thus far is from helping others and getting back their support and motivation. It is not a one way street!

emoticon emoticon emoticon
emoticonDevora4 for taking a stand!

PS: If you read someone's blog that really touches you or motivates you check off I like it. It stands to reason if it helped you it will help others as well. We can't possibly read all the blogs on Spark People but if it hits Popular Blog then more people become aware of it and read it. They then can benefit from those words as well. It is all about helping each other to become successful.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DYNAMICDEB53 4/26/2010 12:00PM

    What lovely bolgs your friend wrote. They are encouraging and remind us that sharing and helping is something that is so needed in the world we live in.

Smiles and hugs

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEFIANTVEGAN 4/26/2010 10:22AM

    thanks for the reminder. It's so important to give credit where credit is due.

emoticon emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
DAWNWATERWOMAN 4/25/2010 11:43PM

    Thanks Yvonne, I am going to go read the blogs asap. Love you, Dawn

Report Inappropriate Comment
MTNHIKER1971 4/25/2010 9:48PM

    Thanks Yvonne!


Report Inappropriate Comment
LOOZINITNOW 4/25/2010 9:42PM

    I'm on my way to check them out now. Thanks for sharing the info!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEBBIEANNE1124 4/25/2010 7:21PM

    She wrote an excellent blog. thanks for sharing. I love reading those that make an impanct on others lives.

Report Inappropriate Comment
GRANDMAMAOF3 4/25/2010 3:28PM

    Thanks for sharing. I'm sparked!
Have a great week! emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
L*I*T*A* 4/25/2010 1:34PM

thanks for sharing....
blessings and hugs.....lita

Report Inappropriate Comment
GLORYB2014 4/25/2010 1:02PM

    I'm glad you put this on, Yvonne. I went in and read both of her blogs and they sure give you something to think about!
Imagine 9 out of 12 people ignoring a cheery smile and hello!!!
You're a great friend Yvonne.
emoticon emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
LITTLEMINX57 4/25/2010 12:55PM

    I am relatively new to Spark people but I love your blogs. You are correct in saying it is not a one way street. I love the way this Community comes to the aid of their fellow friends. If we could all do this in life the world would be so much the better for it. I am going to visit her blogs now.

Report Inappropriate Comment
TEDYBEAR2838 4/25/2010 12:25PM

    You are right. I love the one where she greets 12 people with a happy smile and talks to them and only 3 reply with any glimmer of hope. IT's a sad thing when this is happening across America.

It's time to WAKE UP!

Report Inappropriate Comment
MONTANA_ED 4/25/2010 11:48AM

    Thank you for this! Awesome!

Report Inappropriate Comment
NWFL59 4/25/2010 11:43AM

    Thanks for sharing and alerting us to very helpful blogs.

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEVORA4 4/25/2010 11:19AM

  You have made me cry. Unfortunately, I know few people like you. I wish you lived next door to me so I could give you a hug. No wonder so many people love you. God loves you and so do I. Thank you, thank you, thank you. debby aka devora4 emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
OURELEE1 4/25/2010 11:15AM

  Thank you.

Report Inappropriate Comment
MRDPOLING 4/25/2010 11:11AM

    awesome! I friended her and the idea of the gray game is so exciting!

Report Inappropriate Comment
TERRYEANDERSON 4/25/2010 11:02AM

    It is motivating to read other people's stories and accomplishments. Thanks! Terry

Report Inappropriate Comment

Have you checked out the newest enhancement on Spark People?

Saturday, April 24, 2010

We all know I love to cook. I try to share my recipes or the recipes I have found that will entice you to try new foods or ways of preparing them. Believe it or not there are many out there that do not cook or like to cook. My Spark Mail is always filled with questions on this and that. I am surprised at how many tell me they don’t know how to cook and are just learning. Well, now there is a new tool to play with here on Spark people.

I am so loving this new enhancement to our Nutrition Tracker. I have used my Nutrition Tracker ever since I put my Spark page together. Sssssssshhhhhhhhhh! I won’t say it took me 3 weeks before I finally did that though. If you have not read Spark Guy’s blog about it, here is the link:

There is so much we can do with our Nutrition Tracker… emoticon

SUNNYH99 is the one who taught me how to put my own recipe’s into the Recipe Calculator and I have been taking advantage of that ever since. Thanks Sunny!!!!!!!!!!!! How much simpler could it be to put your favorite recipes you make often into the Recipe Calculator and then in the future when you make them all you do is click on one button, the name of the recipe, add then just add it to that days menu.

Now when you go to your Nutrition Tracker you click on Add a Food and then the magic happens. I have been using the tab, Food Groupings where I would add things I ate with certain meals or certain salads I make and it is a breeze to add the foods to my tracker that way.

Wait till you start playing with and using the newest tab, the 4th tab- Recipes. You can now pull up on your Food Tracker your saved Favorite Recipes, Your Shared Recipes (your own recipes you have loaded into Spark Recipes), and Recipes You Have Reviewed.
All you have to do now is click on the dropdown box and all of those recipes populate, no more hunting for the recipes or trying to remember their names. It is so fast and simple.

There is no longer any excuse to say it is too time consuming to use your Food Tracker. I happen to think this is the best tool we have on here in Spark People. Load up the recipes you make the most. Start saving in your Favorites the Spark Recipes you make often. Start reviewing these recipes and it brings those into another box.

I will admit that it is time consuming to add in your own recipes but it is so worth it. You want to stay on your journey to a healthier You; well you have to make foods that taste good to keep you on it. You can eat well, not feel deprived or bored if you take the extra time to create these foods for you. Yes we should be eating to fuel our bodies but who says it can’t taste great at the same time.

You are really worth it to take the time to utilize this great new tool and you will thank yourself later on for doing so. I just love it! emoticon

OK so let's try this link:

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

EGRAMMY 4/28/2010 9:39PM

    Dr. Oz said today we should eat beans daily. He maybe read Travelnista's blog?

Report Inappropriate Comment
SHIRLEY2010 4/25/2010 6:20PM

    I always learn something new from you.

Report Inappropriate Comment
RACHELRB 4/25/2010 4:18PM

    Wow that's awesome! Thank you so much for pointing this out- that makes navigation a breeze. These Spark People folks are such smarties emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
AHEALTHIERME9 4/25/2010 4:10PM

    Awesome!!! Thank you for sharing this! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
THATWEIRDGIRL 4/25/2010 10:46AM

  Good to know, so thank you! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
FARLEY_GIRL 4/25/2010 9:43AM

    Thanks for posting this!!!! I'm one of those individuals that in the past hasn't cooked and for the most part doesn't like to. I'm trying/learning to change that since it is better for the pocketbook and the belly! The problem I've been having though is tracking the nutrition....I get frustrated then waylaid about tracking food...b/c there are not clear nutritional values listed and doing each individual item in the recipe .....UGH! It's not easy...I'm not doing it! This new tool will hopefully make it easier to track what I cook at home! Thanks for the heads up! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
LINIS_THIN 4/25/2010 12:57AM

    I've been planning to start cooking and using this feature.. thanks for the encouragement.

I really was getting too into prepackaged foods for the convenience of the food label... now we can make our own!


Report Inappropriate Comment
_MAOMAO_ 4/25/2010 12:35AM

  WOW! I had no idea, hadn't noticed that new tab! Hunky dory, now we just need that available on the mobile apps, too, hint hint.

Report Inappropriate Comment
ALOVEBEAM 4/25/2010 12:19AM


Report Inappropriate Comment
DS9KIE 4/25/2010 12:04AM

    This is cool.

Hey I'm one of those that doesn't like to cook and does not know how either, well I'm here to learn.

Well I haven't been able to figure out Nutrition Tracker. But maybe this will make it easier. And I don't know how to add my own recipes. And hey you can put groups of food, that's cool. I wondered how you put a salad on the tracker. Its very hard when your a vegetarian and you eat different the the spark food (for a lack of a better word), So I just gave up.

Report Inappropriate Comment
JESSICA_0029 4/24/2010 11:35PM

    I will definitely check this out and use it. Thanks for describing it so well you are always so helpful emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
FITNESSFOODIE 4/24/2010 10:17PM

    I can't wait to try the new tab. Thanks for describing it!

Report Inappropriate Comment
JENNY888 4/24/2010 8:46PM

    It took me awhile to find it. I found I had to click on the add food button first. I love the feature.

Report Inappropriate Comment
MRDPOLING 4/24/2010 6:21PM

    is it just me? I cannot find the new tab anywhere!!!!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
FUNNYGRANNY71 4/24/2010 5:39PM

    Thanks for sharing that information. I have been with Spark People over a year and I am always learning new things on the website.

Report Inappropriate Comment
EGRAMMY 4/24/2010 2:55PM

    Thank you for sharing this information with all Sparkers so they can help themselves, including me. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
GEORGANNE39 4/24/2010 2:54PM

    Spark is making it easier and easier to be healthy! How can we ever repay that service and kindness?! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
NWFL59 4/24/2010 1:24PM

    Thanks for the reminder. I read about it but haven't checked it out yet.

Report Inappropriate Comment

    That's great! I'll have to try to 4th tab too!

Report Inappropriate Comment
L*I*T*A* 4/24/2010 11:32AM

    great reminder.........
love the new tab
thanks for sharing......
blessings and hugs.....lita

Report Inappropriate Comment
JIMDAB 4/24/2010 10:54AM

    I use the food grouping tab a lot.. It is sooo worth the trouble, even for something as simple as a celery stalk with peanut butter on it or the celery, carrot, red bell pepper snack combo I often eat. Two clicks and its entered for the day. After a while its set up and you only have to add the new.

I'll be giving the recipe tab a try. Thanks!

Report Inappropriate Comment
ALEXTHEHUNN 4/24/2010 10:46AM

    This is a great reminder. Thanks for posting this.

Report Inappropriate Comment
MOXIE22 4/24/2010 10:30AM

    Thank you for posting this. I've been trying to use the food tracker but we don't eat much pre-prepared food and it was really a hassle to figure out calorie and food values for homemade recipes.
Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Report Inappropriate Comment

Spinach, the Vegetable of the Week

Friday, April 23, 2010

This leafy green is an excellent source of vitamin K, vitamin A, magnesium, folate, manganese, iron, calcium, vitamin C, vitamin B2, potassium, and vitamin B6. It’s a very good source of protein, phosphorus, vitamin E, zinc, dietary fiber, and copper. Plus, it’s a good source of selenium, niacin, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Spinach is loaded with lutein. It’s a carotenoid found in spinach that is protective against eye diseases such as age-related cataracts and macular degeneration. The Lutein in spinach might be absorbed better if you eat it with a little fat, such as a small amount of olive oil, or the food that you’re eating it with contains some fat.

A carotenoid found in spinach and other green leafy vegetables fights human prostate cancer two different ways, according to research published in the the Journal of Nutrition. The carotenoid, called neoxanthin, not only induces prostate cancer cells to self-destruct, but is converted in the intestines into additional compounds, called neochromes, which put prostate cancer cells into a state of stasis, thus preventing their replication.

The nutrients in spinach can also help with conditions in which inflammation plays a role. For example, asthma, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis and rheumatoid arthritis are all conditions that involve inflammation.

Vitamin E-rich Leafy Greens Slow Loss of Mental Function
Mental performance normally declines with age, but the results of Chicago Health and Aging Project (CHAP) suggest that eating just 3 servings of green leafy, yellow and cruciferous vegetables each day could slow this decline by 40%, suggests a study in the journal Neurology.

Spinach contains choline and inositol, the substances that help to prevent atherosclerosis or thickening and hardening of arteries.

Spinach is also helpful in the following health issues : Anemia, Tumors, Constipation, Insomnia, Obesity, Neuritis (inflammation of nerves), Nerve exhaustion, High blood pressure, Bronchitis, Colon cancer, Prostate cancer, Breast cancer, Osteoporosis, Dyspepsia (chronic indigestion), Also helps ailment of the kidneys, bladder and liver.


Spinach salad with Strawberries and Pecans

8 ounces fresh torn spinach or baby spinach
1 1/2 to 2 cups cleaned and sliced strawberries
1/2 cup pecan halves or pieces
2 to 3 ounces goat cheese or blue cheese, crumbled, optional


1/4 cup Canola oil or Olive oil
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon
1/8 teaspoon each onion and garlic powder
dash dry mustard

Toss spinach with sliced strawberries, pecans, and cheese, if using.
Combine dressing ingredients in a jar; shake until well blended. When ready to serve, drizzle dressing over the salad and toss lightly.
Serves 4 to 6.

Potato and Spinach Soup With Lemon
By Anastatia Curley

The potatoes and parsnips give this soup body, and the spinach and lemon make it bright. It's sustaining, yet light and exciting.

Spinach and Pasta Soup

1 pound of turkey sausage
1 large onion chopped
3 cloves garlic minced
1 28 oz can of chopped or diced tomatoes
1 1/2 quart of chicken broth
3 quarts of water
1 pound of farfalle(bow tie pasta) or favorite small pasta
1 10 oz. pkg. of frozen spinach
2 15 oz. cans of small whit beans or canneloni beans

Heat an extra-large soup kettle over medium-high heat. Add the sausage and brown, breaking it up with a spoon. Add the onion and garlic, and saute 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes, breaking them up with the spoon. Stir in the stock and 1 quart of the water, and raise the heat to high. Bring to a boil, add the pasta, and cook, stirring, for 5 minutes. Then add spinach, beans, and remaining quart of water (add extra water, if needed), and simmer, covered, stirring occasionally, until spinach is tender. Add salt to taste.

Number of Servings: 12

(this recipe I put into Spark Recipes so it can be put into my Fodd Tracker)

Crustless Spinach Quiche

Recipe courtesy of Food Network Magazine

Vegan Spinach Linguine with Mushroom and Pepper Sauce

spinach linguine, enough for 2 people
1 red pepper
1 green pepper
1 small box mushrooms
2 tablespoons oil
1 medium jar spaghetti sauce

Wash and slice mushrooms. Cut peppers into 1/2 strips. Heat oil in pan. Add mushrooms and peppers. Stir fry over medium heat until peppers are wilted. Pour sauce over all and heat through. Put spaghetti on plate and spoon sauce over it. You can be very versatile with this recipe. You can use garlic and onion. You could also add a yellow pepper to make this very colorful. Serves 2.

Lentils & Spinach

1 bunch spinach, washed, drained and chopped
3 to 4 cloves garlic, crushed (optional)
1/2 cup chili peppers chopped
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
sea salt to taste
1 cup cooked lentils
2 Tablespoons virgin olive oil

Heat oil in a pan. Sauté crushed garlic, ginger & peppers for one minute.

Add chopped spinach. Cover and cook for 2 minutes.

Add cooked lentils, salt to taste and lemon juice. Cook and stir about 30 seconds

Serve on a bed of rice.

Chana Masala (Spicy Chickpeas) with Spinach

1 can chickpeas in water (also called garbanzo beans) or 1 1/2 cups precooked + 1/2 cup
1/2 onion, diced
3 cloves garlic, diced
3 tbsp olive oil
juice from one lemon, (approx 2 tbsp )
1/2 tsp curry powder
1/2 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp garam masala
1 large bunch of spinach or two handfuls, rinsed

In a large skillet or frying pan, sauté onions and garlic in olive oil until soft, about 3-5 minutes.
Add chickpeas straight from the can, including all the water. Add spices and lemon juice, cover, and simmer about 10-15 minutes, stirring occasionally, adding more water if needed, until chickpeas are cooked and soft.

Bay Scallops with Spinach

3 lbs of fresh spinach, stemmed and washed, not dried.
1 lb of bay scallops.
3 large cloves of garlic, peeled.
¼ cup of white wine.
2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice.
2 teaspoons of olive oil.
2 teaspoons of salt.
1 teaspoon of grated lemon zest.
Freshly ground pepper, to taste.

Heat 1 teaspoon of olive oil in a large pot over medium heat.

Add the garlic and lemon zest and cook for 20 seconds, stirring continuously.

Add the spinach and toss occasionally until wilted.

Drain off the liquid and season with 1 teaspoon of salt and pepper. Keep warm.

Heat the remaining 1 teaspoon of oil in a large skillet over medium heat.

Add the scallops and sauté for 1 minute or until just cooked through.

Remove the scallops from the pan and add the lemon juice and wine.

Cook, scraping the bottom of the pan, for 15 seconds.

Remove from the heat, then toss in the scallops and season with the remaining salt and pepper to taste.

On serving plates, place a mound of spinach in the middle and surround with scallops.

Different combos for Spinach Smoothies:

handful of spinach
1 banana
1 1/2 cups of fresh pineapple
2 oranges
2 cups of water


One package of fresh baby spinach
One frozen banana
One cup of frozen blueberries
½ cup of frozen strawberries
One cup water


Creamy Tropical Green Smoothie

1 large banana, ripe and peeled
1/4 avocado flesh
6 oz spinach, fresh
3/4 cup pineapple, frozen
3/4 cup mango, frozen
4 ice cubes
1 tablespoon coconut milk powder
1 packet of stevia (optional)
1 1/2 cup pure water

Pour water in first. Then place the banana and avocado closest to the blade with the rest of the ingredients on top. Blend until smooth.
Serves 1-3

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SHIRLEY2010 4/25/2010 6:21PM

    Like Popeye I love me spinach. I am going to make the spinach salad first but I think I will use walnuts instead.

Report Inappropriate Comment
LITTLEMINX57 4/25/2010 1:02PM

    I never heard of putting spinach in smoothies. I am going to have to try those recipes 1st. Thanks for sharing.

Report Inappropriate Comment
FUNNYGRANNY71 4/24/2010 4:08PM

    More good information and great recipes. Please keep them coming.

Report Inappropriate Comment
SAMTHEMAN60 4/24/2010 12:19PM

    I am going to have to try some of these smoothies with the spinach in it and that strawberry pecan salad.

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEBBIEANNE1124 4/24/2010 10:25AM

    I'm going to let you do all the recipe adds and i will do some putting them together...

Report Inappropriate Comment
DAWNWATERWOMAN 4/24/2010 12:58AM

    I love love LOVE spinach! I need to go get some tomorrow and have a YUMMY salad! Thanks for these recipes. Hmm, strawberries & spinach. The best of both worlds..fruit & veggie! Love ya, Dawn

Report Inappropriate Comment
WEDDWT 4/23/2010 4:40PM

    I was a big Popeye fan when I was little, he got me to eat my spinach, and I still love it. Thanks for the recipes.

Report Inappropriate Comment
GOLDENGIRL88 4/23/2010 12:56PM

    thanks for the recipes!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEBBIEANNE1124 4/23/2010 11:50AM

    Great recipes I have to try. Thanks!

I ahve never been one for cooked spinach but i do love it fresh.

Report Inappropriate Comment
DS9KIE 4/23/2010 10:47AM

    thanks for the great recipes

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEFIANTVEGAN 4/23/2010 10:19AM

    I love spinach especially that salad with strawberries and pecans I've made it before, one thing I like to do is buy the pecans that are caramelized with brown sugar or with cinnamon delicious. emoticon

emoticon emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
JBDIAS 4/23/2010 10:18AM

    Thanks for the tasty recipes will be trying these out soon.

Report Inappropriate Comment
L*I*T*A* 4/23/2010 10:09AM

    great recipes.........
thanks for sharing........
blessings and hugs............lita

Report Inappropriate Comment
NWFL59 4/23/2010 9:28AM

    Love to eat spinach, must try the strawberries and pecans recipe this afternoon while I have all fresh ingredients.

Report Inappropriate Comment
BANTHENICKEL 4/23/2010 9:24AM

    Had a cup of fresh spinach with lunch yesterday. In the past, spinach has given me horrible gas, but I managed yesterday well - probably because my body is now used to the high fiber intake.

Report Inappropriate Comment
GEORGANNE39 4/23/2010 8:51AM

    Yummy! I will definitely try some of these!

Report Inappropriate Comment
BARBARAJ73 4/23/2010 8:33AM

    Am a big fan of spinach! Thanks for the info and recipes - spinach salad for lunch today

Report Inappropriate Comment
LOOZINITNOW 4/23/2010 8:31AM

    I was going to buy some spinach today to make some smoothies with! Great info!

Report Inappropriate Comment
RD03875 4/23/2010 8:25AM

    I love spinach, unfortunately people with gout can't eat it that often.

Report Inappropriate Comment
DYNAMICDEB53 4/23/2010 8:23AM

    I just love spinach cooked or fresh. As a kid mom wou;d make it often normally cooked with hard boiled egg. I learned to eat it with a little vinegar, not sure why but I like it.
I had not realized how good it is for you. I new about the good iron, which is one reason I ate it for a number of years dealing with aneamia.
I will be enjoying it more in the future. Thank you for the recipes too.

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEVORA4 4/23/2010 8:22AM

  Thanks for info. Love it I never heard of a spinach strawberry and walnut salad but since YOU recommend it I am willing to try. You are emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
FITNESSFOODIE 4/23/2010 8:05AM

    I love spinach, it's one of my favorite vegetables! Thanks for some new recipes! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
WILLOW49 4/23/2010 7:21AM

    Spinach...a staple in this household! One of my favorites :)

Report Inappropriate Comment
MTNHIKER1971 4/23/2010 7:15AM

    Great one Yvonne! Strawberry's, pecans and spinach. mmm mmmm Popeye would be proud

Report Inappropriate Comment
MRDPOLING 4/23/2010 7:02AM

    I was a weird child...I actually enjoyed Spinach from the can with a bit of lemon or vinegar on it.

Report Inappropriate Comment

Happy Earth Day! What does that plastic bag really cost to use?

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Today is Earth Day. We are all here on a healthier quest for our bodies. Don't we want the same thing for Earth? A carbon footprint is defined as: The total amount of greenhouse gases produced to directly and indirectly support human activities, usually expressed in equivalent tons of carbon dioxide (CO2). Have you ever stopped to think about the impact on the earth by using those plastic bags instead of reusable canvass bags. You as just one individual/family have the potential to replace some of the estimated 1,000 plastic bags that each family brings home every year by using reusable canvass bags. Multiply that by everyone in the United States and that is impressive.

It takes 12 million barrels of oil to produce the amount of plastic bags the US uses per year. If we all stopped using them just think how much the cost of gas would come down.

The production of plastic bags requires petroleum and often natural gas, both non-renewable resources that increase our dependency on foreign suppliers. Additionally, prospecting and drilling for these resources contributes to the destruction of fragile habitats and ecosystems around the world.

A plastic shopping bag can take anywhere from 15 to 1000 years to decompose.

According to the Wall Street Journal, only 1% of plastic bags are recycled world-wide.

According to the British Antarctic Survey, discarded plastic bags have been found as far north as the Arctic Circle and as far south as The Falkland Islands.

An estimated one million birds and 100,000 turtles, whales, and other sea animals die of starvation each year after ingesting discarded plastic bags which block their digestive tracks. Discarded plastic bags mistaken for food. Turtles think the bags are jellyfish, their primary food source. Once swallowed, plastic bags choke animals or block their intestines, leading to an agonizing death.

Ireland, the first European country to impose a tax on them, has decreased plastic shopping bag consumption by 90% since 2002, reducing overall plastic bag usage by 1.08 billion.

In the past five years, over a dozen countries have banned or put a tax on disposable bags.

Why hasn't the United States? Sure some stores give you 5 cents back for using one but we really need to ban them. People have had years to get used to using the canvass bags.

What else can you do to help save the environment:

Install water-saving devices on your faucets and toilets.

Wash and dry only full loads of laundry and dishes.

Recycle printer cartridges.

Use compact fluorescent light bulbs to save money and energy.

Insulate your home as best as you can. Install weather stripping around all doors and windows.

Plant trees to shade your home.

Replace old windows with energy efficient ones.

Use cold water instead of warm or hot water when possible.

I could go on and on. there are so many ways we can be green and reduce our carbon footprints. I think the reasons above are painless and will also help us save money. We are all here in a journey to become healthier. So I will ask again don't we want the same for our planet?

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

FUNNYGRANNY71 4/23/2010 5:01PM

    Lots of good information in your blog. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Report Inappropriate Comment
EGRAMMY 4/23/2010 6:50AM

    I love spinach salad. Your post is a tribute to spinach. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEBBIEANNE1124 4/23/2010 2:05AM

    Wonderful blog here.
I really enjoyed this.

Report Inappropriate Comment
SKINNYROBIN100 4/23/2010 1:11AM

    Hi..I remember when the stores started using these plastic things and I was still pretty young. But even then, my first reaction was...WHY?? What was wrong with the good, old brown ones?? I didn't like them then and I still don't. Most of the stores that I shopped at, gave us a choice on paper or plastic...for a while, anyway. They should be banned and they should never come back. Tax them. Tax them high! I have some Native Indian in my geneology and I have always tended to follow an earth-loving way of preserving and living more naturally. But it had become very hard say the last 15 years. and I'm so glad that things are turning around and our generation started the GREEN movement. Remember the American Indian add on TV in the 70's about litering?? The tear running down his face? Well, here we are and it does make me cry !!! I could go on and on! emoticon But I won't. We are such a messy keeper of our earth house. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
TEDYBEAR2838 4/22/2010 8:40PM

    Oprah had a great recycle show on today, but I missed a big part of it. Didn't realize it is earth day.

Report Inappropriate Comment
FITNESSFOODIE 4/22/2010 8:25PM

    I have a great collection of shopping bags and I recycle my plastic bags when I get them. I always keep them in my trunk. Thanks for reminding us about plastic bags and their effect on the environment! emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
MRDPOLING 4/22/2010 6:55PM

    I've seen video's online of people that turn those plastic shopping bags into purses and clothing.

Report Inappropriate Comment
EGRAMMY 4/22/2010 6:35PM

    I do make use of any plastic bags to pick up dog poop and figure that in million years that chemicalized stuff with the food excrement will form a gem more valuable than today's diamonds? emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
WILLOW49 4/22/2010 6:26PM

    We've been using canvas bags for a long time. On the rare occasion when I forget, and we use plastic, I always recycle them.

We all need to be kind to our Earth!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DYNAMICDEB53 4/22/2010 6:07PM

    I have been a long time believer in reuable grocery bags. I have used them for a very long time. I even used them at department stores before that was normal. When I am getting just a small thing I dont use a bag at all. I also like my bags since I can get more into them and they are easier to carry.
Great day to focus on doing the right thing for our earth and us.

Report Inappropriate Comment
BARBARAJ73 4/22/2010 4:56PM

    Thanks for the great Earth Day blog.

Handed one of my handknit "string bags" to the young grocery clerk yesterday. He turned it upside down and right side up then asked me if I was buying it... I simply smiled and said it was handmade & it was for my groceries. He grinned and said "No wonder I've never seen it before." Cute... I'm pleased to say the number of totes being used locally is growing! Wish I saw them used as much at non-grocery stores.

Like others, I occ. forget my bags. That's when I ask for paper and use them for my recycled newspapers. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
CATHYGETSFIT 4/22/2010 4:04PM

    Great earth day blog! emoticon emoticon emoticon The only problem I have is that I sometimes forget to bring my canvas bags into the store. I always recycle them though and recycle any and every thing else I can. I just wish the 3, 4 and 5 recycle stuff could be recycled. They could if I lived in a much, much bigger city. It's amazing that this little podunk, backwoods hillbilly town does any recycling though. So I guess I shouldn't complain too much. Wait, though, every city, no matter how big or small should recycle EVERYTHING in my opinion. Anyway, thanks for the great blog!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEFIANTVEGAN 4/22/2010 10:22AM

    emoticon yes we should use 100% emoticon recycle we are the most advanced country in the emoticon

I already have like 5 bags from Trader Joe's 2 from Fresh & Easy and if I forget my bags I use the plastic ones for recyclable items like glass or plastic containers and when it's full I toss in the recyclable trash bin.

I am also starting to use a chemical free hair dye to help not only for the environment but it will help my body in the long run.

Since today is earth day I wasn't sure what exact day but I have seen that it's this whole week and I decided to eat raw all day. I'm excited about this I want to see how my body feels too. emoticon emoticon emoticon

Thanks for posting this emoticon blog!

Report Inappropriate Comment
NO_SNOW_BODY 4/22/2010 10:20AM

    I don't use plastic bags at the stores anymore, I crochet my own, also people need think twice when they grab a soda or water in a plastic bottle, not only does it take so much to make them, it cost even to re-cycle them. I always think twice when I deal with plastic, I have a filter on my sink to filter water and store it cold in the refrigerator.

Report Inappropriate Comment
OTTAWABOUND 4/22/2010 10:11AM

    I'm walking any distance that it less than 1.5 miles! Not only is it great for the environment and non-renewable resources, but it really helps my Spark program.

These days, I've always got a few folding bags with me--it's great not to have the giant plastic bag collection under the sink.

Report Inappropriate Comment
L*I*T*A* 4/22/2010 9:45AM

    wonderful reminder for us all................
great blog
thanks for sharing.......
blessings and hugs.........lita

Report Inappropriate Comment
NWFL59 4/22/2010 9:43AM

    Thanks for the blog. Happy Earth Day and we'll make every day Earth Day emoticon emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
JESSICA_0029 4/22/2010 9:39AM

    Great blog I switched to canvas bags awhile ago. I love them they are good for the environment and stronger. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
DIGBOI 4/22/2010 9:38AM

    Wonderful thoughts. All of us need to tread gently on this one and only Mother Earth we have. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
JBDIAS 4/22/2010 9:37AM

    Thanks emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
KARVY09 4/22/2010 9:28AM

    Thanks for the reminder!

Report Inappropriate Comment
SOQUIET 4/22/2010 9:18AM

    What a wonderful contribution to Earth Day!

Thank you!

Report Inappropriate Comment
CUTESUZYQ 4/22/2010 9:06AM

    Your post is a great reminder about the things we do that impact our world. I love using my canvas bags because they hold so much more stuff than the plastic ones do. I would much rather carry 1 bag with 15 things it than 3 or 4 bags with just a few things in each.

Report Inappropriate Comment

It is your choice of how you perceive and how you respond to life’s obstacles.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Life is a grindstone. But whether it grinds us down or polishes us up depends on us."
—L. Thomas Holdcraft

RunToMyDreams wrote a blog yesterday entitled, “ Accent the Positive and Eliminate the Negative. She is always positive and I really admire her for that. All of us here on Spark People really need to accent the Positive in order for us to reach out goals.

It real got me to thinking and I felt the need to blog about it as well. I think it is so important for all of us to remain positive, to live in the present, and not dwell on the past.

Life is an experience . Everyday the scenario changes up. Circumstances change through out the day and we are faced with choices as to how we are going to handle it. You get to choose how you react. You can look at every situation in one of two ways, it is either good or bad. It is how we choose to respond to those circumstances that will determine our success on our journey to a healthier lifestyle.

Positive thinking is a mental attitude that is conductive of our growth and success. A positive mind anticipates happiness, joy, health and a successful outcome of every situation and action. Whatever the mind expects it finds.

Negative thinking is enemy of our new healthier and victorious life. Our mind is a powerful thing. Our thoughts can make or break our life. Negative thoughts will distract your focus from the important and drain your energy.

Balancing positivity vs negativity is the difference between victory and defeat.
If something “bad” happens to us we can either choose to see it as something that is polishing us up to make us stronger, more successful, and our lives better or we can choose to accept defeat, wallow in it, and have a grand ole pity party.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

LITTLEMINX57 4/25/2010 1:04PM

    Never heard that quote but it really fits into anyone's goal on anything whether it is diet, exercise, job, etc.

Report Inappropriate Comment
DIETMEISTER 4/24/2010 6:31PM

    another insightful blog!

Report Inappropriate Comment
WINGSOFCHANGE 4/22/2010 4:39PM

    I love that quote!!! You've given me a new way to look at the challenges we all face. Thank you for posting this today because the CHOICE of being ground down or polished is totally up to me! I appreciate the reminder my friend!
emoticon emoticon emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
DJS-DEBBIE 4/22/2010 6:07AM

    Great quote - I have never seen it before!

Report Inappropriate Comment

    Excellent blog my friend. I am going to do my best to focus on the positive! Love you, Dawn

Report Inappropriate Comment
MIKROS2 4/21/2010 10:47PM

    Great Blog!!! We have to work many times because so many things around us accentuate the negative. I have been really trying to send positive notes to all those who have been so kind, caring, and thoughtful during this month when things have been so chaotic in my life. Scripture tells us we are to be JOYFUL in every situation; still working on that!

Report Inappropriate Comment
TEDYBEAR2838 4/21/2010 9:04PM

    Yup, yup, yup. SO TRUE. It's not what happens to us as much as How we react to what happens to us.

Report Inappropriate Comment
ASHLEEWEBART 4/21/2010 4:21PM

    It is not easy being positive on some days because things happen that, at least temporarily, cause us to lose perspective for awhile. Thank you for your blog and for reminding us positivity is something we have to work to achieve and keep!

Comment edited on: 4/21/2010 4:55:05 PM

Report Inappropriate Comment
MRDPOLING 4/21/2010 2:59PM

    Love that quote!!!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DYNAMICDEB53 4/21/2010 1:38PM

    Right on.....attitude is a player in our success. If you can keep it positive and not dwell on the negatives, you increase your changes to make the best decisions. It is something to keep working on.

Report Inappropriate Comment
WILLBOYWONDER 4/21/2010 1:21PM

    Great wisdom. Our success or failure begins and ends with each one of us.

Report Inappropriate Comment
RUBYKNOWS 4/21/2010 1:01PM

    Great blog! Thanks! We all need to remind ourselves of this every now and then.

Report Inappropriate Comment
CAROL3SAN 4/21/2010 12:58PM

    Thank you for a great blog. Positive thinking is the major thing that keeps me on track to live my healthy lifestyle.
Enjoy the rest of your day.

Report Inappropriate Comment
LOOZINITNOW 4/21/2010 12:01PM

    Great blog! emoticon I have been doing a little bit of wallowing myself lately. Enough!

Report Inappropriate Comment
DIGBOI 4/21/2010 11:53AM

    I agree with you. Thinking positive is the only way to get the best out of life. As always thanks for sharing. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
DEVORA4 4/21/2010 11:51AM

  once again you hit a homerun

Report Inappropriate Comment
MIATIA1 4/21/2010 11:41AM

    Nicely said and to go along with that I always repeat to my self
"Take the first step in faith for we don't always have to see the whole staircase, just take the first step".
T. emoticon

Report Inappropriate Comment
NWFL59 4/21/2010 11:40AM

    Thanks for posting. I find thinking positive is a lot more fun and helps me turn around the occassional setback as I strive toward various goals.

Report Inappropriate Comment
L*I*T*A* 4/21/2010 11:38AM

wonderful blog as always....
thanks for sharing......
blessings and hugs...........lita

Report Inappropriate Comment

First Page  1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39 40 41 42 43 44 45 46 47 48 49 50 51 52 53 54 55 56 57 58 59 60 61 62 63 64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 91 92 93 94 95 96 97 98 99 100 101 102 103 104 105 106 107 108 109 110 111 112 113 114 115 116 117 118 119 120 121 122 123 124 125 126 127 128 129 130 131 132 133 134 135 136 137 138 139 140 141 142 143 144 145 146 147 148 149 150 151 152 153 154 155 156 157 158 159 160 161 162 163 164 165 166 167 168 169 170 171 172 173 174 175 176 177 178 179 180 181 182 183 184 185 186 187 188 189 190 191 192 193 194 195 196 197 198 199 200 201 202 203 204 205 206 207 Last Page