Thursday, February 23, 2012

Look great and feel fantastic a inexpensive way to become physically fit!

medicine ball also known as an exercise ball, is a very inexpensive, useful piece of equipment used in many different activities.  Medicine ball training is one of the oldest forms of strength and conditioning training which has once again made its way back has become an important addition to your workout. Often used  by athletes who have sustained an injury and seek rehabilitation and strength training, it serves an important role in the field of sports medicine. With the new technology the ball has become more versatile than ever. cheap medicine bals come in many different weights and sizes. 

Having Multiple Sclerosis myself, I am always looking at ways of improving my gate as well as overall physical abilities. Used by secondary schools as a fitness aid, this is something my older children have been using for sometime. Because of the weight of the ball, there is a need to properly shift weight from the rear leg to the front. The med balls are also a great tool for improving dynamic flexibility. The weight of the ball can help improve the functional range over which force must be resisted and applied. If your looking for cheap med balls  that are affordable, portable, durable and dependable I suggest clicking on  medicine balls for cheap    By incorporating some medicine ball exercises into my warm up it is a great way to awaken the nervous system. The further the distance the weight is from the body the greater the core strength and power required to complete the exercises. This is why athletes may be using medicine balls. To increase their core strength. total body power and coordination.

Neglect Leads to Childs Hodgkins Death

Get your tissues because you’re not going to be able to take this story of child neglect. Eight-year-old Willie Robinson had massive swollen glands on his neck for more than two years. As his health got worse and worse, both Willie and his relatives told his parents the boy needed medical attention, but they never took him to the doctor. Willie eventually collapsed and died from highly treatable Hodgkins lymphoma, weighing only 51 pounds at the time of his death.

Yesterday, Willie’s parents Monica Hussing and William Robinson Sr. were sentenced to eight years in prison for involuntary manslaughter. They received the longest sentence the Cleveland judge could give after having pleaded guilty to avoid trial.

Hussing and Robinson’s lawyers had argued that the parents couldn’t afford medical treatment for their son. More than eight different family members tried to get them to take Willie to see the doctor as he deteriorated before their eyes. The Washington Post reports that prosecutors argued Willie also, “… had begged his parents to take him to see a doctor but was rejected.” Local doctors testified that even if the parents couldn’t afford it, Willie would never have been turned away by hospitals.

Hodgkin lymphoma is a cancer that starts in the body’s white blood cells and spreads through lymph nodes, thus the softball-sized swollen glands from which Willie suffered. According to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, Hodgkin lymphoma (also known by many as Hodgkin’s disease) is one of the most curable forms of cancer. More than 80% of people treated for the disease go on to live long and happy lives. But not Willie, because he was never treated. What a travesty.

Photo credit: WJW-TV Cleveland
By Katherine Stone

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Infant Tylenol Recall

A friend of mine over at saavy suburban shared this very important information that i wanted to pass along to my readers. Thank you so much to the alert from WebMD Home Health & Parenting Center Health & Baby Center Health

Infant Tylenol Recalled
Faulty Cover Could Lead to Wrong Dose
By Daniel J. DeNoon
WebMD Health News Reviewed by Laura J. Martin, MD

Feb. 17, 2012 -- 574,000 bottles of infant Tylenol have been recalled by Johnson & Johnson's McNeil Consumer Healthcare division.
A faulty part of the dosing system -- an interior cap called a "flow restrictor" -- can get pushed down into the bottle. This interferes with the syringe used to measure each dose. It could result in kids getting too much or too little acetaminophen, the painkiller/fever-reducer that is Tylenol's active ingredient.
The recall affects seven lots of infants' Tylenol Oral Suspension 1 oz. Grape, sold over the counter across the U.S. The recalled infant Tylenol:
Has the UPC code 300450122308
Has lot numbers BIL0U00, BIL0V00, BIL3500, BJL2D00, BJL2E00, BJL2T00, or BJL2U00
The product should not be used if the interior cap has been pushed down into the bottle. If the cap is intact, the product may be used.
"We apologize to parents and caregivers who have found our SimpleMeasure dosing system hard to use," McNeil president Denice Torres said in a news release.
McNeil says that it has not heard of anyone being harmed by the recalled product. "The risk of a serious adverse medical event is remote," a company news release says. However, the company admits it has received several complaints about the faulty SimpleMeasure system.
The system works by pushing the dosing syringe into the flow restrictor, then turning the bottle upside down and using the syringe to draw the correct dose. It's a new system, ironically put in place to reduce the risk of overdose.
The company is offering a refund to consumers who contact McNeil at its Tylenol web site or by calling 888-222-6036.
This is the latest in a string of recalls of Tylenol and other Johnson & Johnson products involving familiar brands such as Rolaids, and Tylenol products for arthritis, cold and flu, allergies, and sinus pain.
More information on the recall, and a video demonstrating how to use the product’s dosing system, can be found at

McNeil web site.
Johnson & Johnson web site.
© 2012 WebMD, LLC. All rights reserved.

Friday, February 17, 2012

How Hypertension Affects Memory - comfort keepers

Oops, you did it again…forgot someone’s phone number, could not remember what you had for lunch yesterday, or for a moment maybe you were not able to recall your neighbor’s name. Simple signs, you chuckle to yourself, of growing older. You might even laugh out loud with family and friends about losing your memory now that you are enjoying your senior years. After all, some degree of short-term memory loss is a sign of aging. Right?

Well, actually you could be wrong. Studies regarding memory loss in seniors indicate that instead of being a sign of simply aging, short-term memory loss could be a symptom of the effects of hypertension or high blood pressure. Hypertension causes damage to blood vessels, resulting in plaque and other tissue buildup, which can break free and move with blood flow only to get trapped in smaller vessels. This blockage can cause clots that prevent blood filled with oxygen and nutrients from traveling to the area of the body it supplies. If clots or other blockage prevent oxygen from reaching cells in the brain responsible for memory, those cells die, inhibiting that function.

There are well-known conditions caused by hypertension such as stroke, aneurysm, heart and coronary artery disease. While the effects of these conditions can contribute to complications of decreased blood flow throughout the body, vital brain cell loss can occur without your enduring a stroke or another critical health event. The crucial connection that needs to be acknowledged here is that when brain cells governing memory die due to lack of blood flow – regardless of the cause – the result is potential damage to your brain.

Research indicates this loss of blood flow can cause other diseases to occur. Vascular dementia, one cause of dementia, may very well be caused by decreased or lack of blood flow to the brain. In fact, studies indicate that people who have hypertension in their middle-aged years are at increased risk for developing dementia as they age. Mild cognitive impairment, the shift in memory and comprehension that begins in the elderly and is also typical of complications of Alzheimer’s, can also be caused by the effects of arterial damage prohibiting blood flow.

Hypertension often goes undiagnosed for years, especially in people who do not have regular medical check ups. Memory loss due to hypertension alone is caused by detrimental elements that progress over time, decreasing or halting blood flow to parts of the brain that are critical to its proper function. Brain cells can slowly die due to lack of blood flow, causing a person to experience subtle changes in memory and other cognitive functions. For this reason, any changes in memory that occur as you or your senior family member transition into the golden years should not be ignored.

High blood pressure can be detected by a simple blood pressure check, which can often be performed at machines now available in local drug stores. If you suspect you or the senior loved one in your life may be at risk, it is well worth a trip to find out. Keep in mind, however, that while a trip to the store is more convenient than a visit to the doctor, it is still important to seek medical advice for proper diagnosis and treatment.

Mayo Clinic (2011). High blood pressure dangers: effects of hypertension on your body. Retrieved on December 10, 2011 from
Kirchheimer, Sid (2003). Short-term memory slightly worse in those with hypertension.
Retrieved on December 10, 2011 from
John Hopkins Medicine (2011). How does hypertension affect memory? Retrieved on December 10, 2011 from

Top ten foods per a healthy heart - comfort keepers

The concept that particular foods promote healthier hearts is not new. It is a fact that a well-balanced nutritional diet contributes to good health throughout a lifetime. For many people, the risk of diseases such as Type II diabetes, high cholesterol, heart disease and coronary artery issues may be reduced by consuming healthy diets. While it is important to begin healthy eating habits early in life, it can be just as vital to good health when healthy eating practices are followed in later years. The effects of some illnesses can be controlled and perhaps averted by practicing good nutritional habits.

Eating well is especially important for seniors who become more susceptible over time to the effects from aging and symptoms of illnesses that afflict the elderly. Seniors often battle loss of appetite, challenges in cooking healthy foods for one, and other health-related obstacles. These challenges affect their overall health and wellbeing which allows them to continue living independent lives in their own homes. For these reasons, it is critical seniors consume healthy foods and snacks that promote good health. A doctor should be consulted before making any diet changes,

With these challenges in mind, Comfort Keepers® has researched what experts advise are the top 10 best foods for health. Many of these foods take little or no time to prepare and can be added to existing diets to add nutritional components that promote better heart health.
1. Berries and grapes: While blueberries are a number one choice because they contain high levels of antioxidants, other berries such as raspberries, strawberries and even red grapes are beneficial. Add a handful of berries to your morning cereal, or munch on grapes for a healthy snack.

2. Fish: Salmon, mackerel and tuna are good sources of omega-3 fatty acids. Experts advise having fish at least twice a week for maximum benefits.

3. Whole grains: Choose breads, cereals, oatmeal, pasta and even snack crackers made of whole grains to reduce risk of heart disease and other chronic diseases.

4. Soy: Daily servings of soybeans like edamame, tofu, soy milk and yogurt are excellent sources of soy protein, linked to reduced risks of cardiovascular diseases, weight loss, and some types of cancers.

5. Nuts: Almonds, walnuts and pecans as daily snacks can reduce the risk of blood clots and may facilitate healthy arterial lining.

6. Olive oil: Olive oil contains a healthy type of fat that, when consumed in moderation, may help reduce risk of heart disease and promotes lower cholesterol levels.

7. Beans and lentils: Packed with protein, beans and lentils also contain levels of magnesium, iron and potassium that can support muscle and organ function, blood flow, and healthy bones. Choices of beans include chickpeas, kidney beans and black beans, all of which can be added to salads or soups. Red and green lentils are also excellent choices to add in soups.

8. Fruits and vegetables: Think color. Dark leafy green, deep reds, yellows and oranges found in spinach, cooked tomatoes, squash and oranges are some choices. Daily intake of these foods has been linked to lower blood pressure, reduced risk of heart disease, and possible decreased risk of some cancers, along with lowered risk of eye diseases and digestive issues.

9. Yogurt: Yogurt containing live and active cultures is considered a probiotic by scientists. Research shows probiotics are connected with lowering some risk factors for cardiovascular disease.

10. Tea and coffee: Flavonoids found in both may reduce heart disease. Studies found that those who drink 3-6 cups of green and black tea or 2-4 cups of coffee a day are at lower risk for heart disease. However, go easy on the sugar added to these beverages to avoid complications sugar may cause!
Good heart health does not depend on food alone. Physical exercise, not smoking and other factors are crucial to maintain healthy heart function. Being aware of bodily changes during the aging process plays a large part in maintaining overall good health. Seniors should also visit their doctors regularly to ensure early detection of any issue that may involve the heart.

Zelman, Kathleen M., MPH, RD, LD. 5 heart healthy foods. Retrieved on December 16, 2001 from
Mayo Clinic (2011). Heart healthy diet: 8 steps to prevent heart disease. Retrieved on December 16, 2011 from
Zelman, Kathleen, M., MPH, RD, LD. Top 10 heart healthy foods. Retrieved on December 16, 2011 from
Mayo Clinic (2011). Whole grains: hearty options for a healthy diet. Retrieved on December 16, 2011 from
Mayo Clinic (2011). Nuts and your heart: eating nuts for heart health. Retrieved on December 16, 2011 from
Mayo Clinic (2011). Olive oil: what are the health benefits? Retrieved on December 16, 2011 from
Harvard School of Public Health. The nutrition source – vegetables and fruits. Retrieved on December 16, 2011 from (2005). Dr. Perricone’s number 10 superfood: yogurt and kelfer. Retrieved on December 17, 2011 from
Boyles, Salynn. WebMd (2010). Tea, coffee drinkers have lower heart risk. Retrieved on December 17, 2011 from
Cespedes, Angela. (2011). What are the benefits of eating beans and lentils? Retrieved on December 17, 2011 from

Whats The Link Between Gum Disease and Heart Health?

Healthy gums, healthy heart? Some experts agree that the key to overall good health starts in your mouth, and they are not referring simply to your pearly whites. Good dental hygiene has long been touted as paramount in maintaining good health. Dentists recommend brushing teeth at least 2 if not 3 times a day and a strict regimen of flossing daily, as well. On the surface, this is understandable. No one wants to be caught with food between their teeth or bad breath.

However, beneath the cosmetic surface lie the most important reasons for maintaining a healthy mouth. While some experts debate whether there is a direct link between gum disease and heart disease – many agree the two have enough in common to warrant attention and that problems in the mouth can be indicative of and even contribute to underlying health issues in the rest of the body. The mouth is a source of bacteria, which can cause health concerns throughout the body under some circumstances.

In short, research and other medical studies have shown:
• Cuts in the gums can allow bacteria that gather in the mouth to enter the blood stream. This can lead to infection in other parts of the body, which is especially problematic if your immune system is weak or you have existing heart valve issues.

• Periodontitis may be indicative of cardiovascular disease (stroke, blocked arteries, heart disease), possibly associated with oral bacteria and chronic inflammation periodontitis causes.

• People who have diabetes already have compromised immune systems unable to adequately fight infection. Elevated sugar levels may increase risks of frequent and serious infections in the mouth, damaging gums and bones and causing tooth loss. Osteoporosis may be linked to periodontal bone and tooth loss. Losing teeth before the age of 35 years could possibly be a risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease.

•Bacteria found in gum disease have also been found in plaque that clogs arteries, and also in vessels experiencing arteriosclerosis.

•Those with gum disease may be more likely to experience strokes.

•Inflammation found in gum disease increases the amount of protein in the body and may indicate inflammation in other areas of the body. These particular proteins are those used to measure a person’s risk for heart attack. When these protein levels rise, they could indicate a person’s increased probability of a heart attack.
While the connection between gum disease and heart problems is not definitive and continues to be explored, experts agree that the same bacteria and inflammation found in gum disease are also found within underlying heart conditions. All agree that it is important for people of all ages to practice good oral hygiene.

Seniors, who as they age become more at risk for developing heart problems and other arterial conditions, should take particular care of their mouths and gums. Discuss with them common links between gum disease and heart problems. Encourage regular dental check ups for early detection of gum disease and seek further medical evaluation if gum disease is found. Explain how following an easy routine of brushing twice and flossing at least once daily can prevent complications such as tooth loss, periodontal disease, infection and more. Remind them to replace toothbrushes every three months. Following these simple steps can make a big difference in the quality of a senior’s overall health.

Mayo Clinic. Oral health: a window to your overall health. Retrieved on December 10, 2011 from
Doheny, Kathleen. Healthy teeth, healthy heart? Retrieved on December 11, 2011 from
Johns Hopkins Health Alert (2011). Gum disease and heart disease: what’s the link? Retrieved on December 11, 2011 from
Thank you Comfort Keepers:What's the Link Between Gum Disease and Heart Health?

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


This information was passed along to me from a friend.TNT mother who worked on the ambulance service many years always promotes the use of egg whites as well. Please keep this in mind should you or someone your in contact with suffer a burn.

A young man sprinkling his lawn and bushes with pesticides wanted to check the contents of the barrel to see how much pesticide remained in it.
He raised the cover and lit his lighter; the vapors ignited and engulfed him. He jumped from his truck, screaming.
His neighbor came out of her house with a dozen eggs and a bowl yelling: "bring me some more eggs!"
She broke them, separating the whites from the yolks.
The neighbor woman helped her to apply the whites onto the young man's face.
When the ambulance arrived and the EMTs saw the young man, they asked who had done this.
Everyone pointed to the lady in charge.
They congratulated her and said: "You have saved his face."
By the end of the summer, the young man brought the lady a bouquet of roses to thank her.
His face was like a baby's skin.
A Healing Miracle for Burns:

Keep in mind this treatment of burns is being included in teaching beginner fireman. First Aid consists of first spraying cold water on the affected area until the heat is reduced which stops the continued burning of all layers of the skin. Then, spread the egg whites onto the affected area.
One woman burned a large part of her hand with boiling water. In spite of the pain, she ran cold faucet water on her hand, separated 2 egg whites from the yolks, beat them slightly and dipped her hand in the solution. The whites then dried and formed a protective layer.
She later learned that the egg white is a natural collagen and continued during at least one hour to apply layer upon layer of beaten egg white. By afternoon she no longer felt any pain and the next day there was hardly a trace of the burn. 10 days later, no trace was left at all and her skin had regained its normal color. The burned area was totally regenerated thanks to the collagen in the egg whites, a placenta full of vitamins.

Since this information could be helpful to everyone: Will you please pass it on?

Birthday Weekend

I think I'm finally recouping from the sugar overload of this weekends birthdays.

On Thursday night we celebrated our grand daughters 4th birthday at my son and daughter-in-laws for a family dinner and cake. The spaghetti bake was delicious!

Saturday we again were at my sons for her party for friends and family. It was a lot of fun and interesting to watch her play with peers and classmates. It's always nice to catch up with extended family as well as share stories with her other side of family we don't get a chance to see often. I don't know how many pizzas were hauled in but I can tell you birthday parties are expensive these days. A much bigger deal then the small groups that gathered when I was a kid. The kids truly enjoyed the pinata as candy overflowed onto the floor buzz lightyear! Is it me or is everyone now expecting these large themed parties? It really seems to be the norm now days.

Sunday we moved the party to moms where we celebrated her 66th birthday with immediate family and sloppy joes. Yum! Great grandma even had some old fashioned pin the tail on the donkey.

It's pretty neat that my oldest son has two children, a boy and a girl. His daughter was born the day before my mom and son the day before my dad.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Central MN Sportsmans Show A Great Place to Take the Family

Over the weekend my husband and I took in the sportsmans show. I wasn't sure what our youngest would think about it but I believe she found plenty to enjoy and a few new toys for her wish list.

I must admit I wasn't thrilled when my husband suggested a trip to the Sportsmans show Sunday afternoon. Having attended in the past I really didn't think it was anything I wanted to spend my day off doing. However, it was truly an amazing time this year and the show was bigger and better than ever!

Besides all the boats, pontoons, campers, campgrounds and resorts there were many good deals, expos and vendors on hand.

The displays were magnificent! Fishing vendors carried everything from tackle and lifejackets, fish locators to rods and reals. There were many hunting vendors as well. I seen shot guns and rifles, hunting knives, as well as clothing. It seemed as I looked around no matter what your game; fishing, hunting or camping supplies were abundant.

We took in a fishing seminar where for a small fee you could try out your skills in the fishing pond. There was a log cutting demonstration which by the way was funny as could be and very educational. As well as a fantastic animal show with reptiles and birds. This too was very fun and interactive and again the man was very numerous.
My daughter held not only a alegator but a python as well!

She's still dreaming of one day owning her own 4 wheeler but she also had her eye on a snowmobile.

It was a great time and although we had to leave after 4 hours we easily could have been there another couple hours.

Tip: the beef jerky and salsa is fantastic!

Happy Valentines Day

If someone makes your heart and soul smile - pull them close, hold on tight and never let go!

Valentine's Day is not about the gifts, the fancy dinners or a dozen roses. Its about being with the one you love & making wonderful memories together.

For Valentine's Day I want a handful of wildflowers instead of fancy roses. A hug instead of diamonds, and a genuine smile instead of chocolates.

Happy Valentine's Day to all the wonderful people in my life.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Practice fire safety when using a kitchen toaster.

Many years ago one of my best friends had a house fire caused by a toaster. Growing up, she was always advocating to peers to keep toasters unplugged. Out of respect; I did. It's something that stayed with me even as I raised my own children. I found myself constantly behind my spouse and children unplugging the chord. I can't even begin to tell you how many nights I walked back to the kitchen just to double check.

Earlier today I'm making toast. I was busy mopping the kitchen floor when I heard it pop up. I thought I would finish first when I smelled something burning. I walk out and can't believe my eyes. My 4 slice toastmaster is still glowing hot and the levers are both up. I decided to watch it for several minutes to see if it would shut off.

After maybe 5 minutes I did in fact unplug the toaster. It did not shut off. It appeared to glow even brighter. I have no doubt this toaster would have eventually ignited had I not unplugged it.

A fire safety tip: always unplug toasters when not in use. One never knows.

About Me

At 44 years old I never really thought of myself as old. Just more or less an older version of the person I remember myself to be. I am a parent, a grandmother, past daycare providor and foster parent for many years now. I've done everything in my life from janitorial to Real Estate. It all comes back to two things. My love for family and making the difference in the life of a child. Although I studied human services in college I dropped out after 3 years. I don't perclaim to be an expert. I've worked with ARC, child abuse, behavioral issues, homelessness as well as chemical dependancy. I myself, was once a victim to domestic abuse. I was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis 7 years ago. Although it definately takes its toll on me I shove forward. I refuse to let life pass me by because of my MS. I have 5 children. Ages 23, 22, 20, 18 and 5. I have been through teen pregnancy not once but twice. Both girls were 16. My story may not be unique but it is the real world. Like me or not I am me.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Linky Follower Party Hop

Joining in the Linky Party Blog Hop started by Cheri at It's So Very Cheri!  I like that the new Linky Follower tool works on every platform and won't be discontinued in the future!  As a new blogger, I had not even set up GFC and am starting from scratch with Linky Follower instead.

Here are the rules for the blog hop (borrowed graciously from Maryann@DomesticallySpeaking):


{You can have both the LINKY FOLLOWERS & GFC on your site but you must have the LINKY FOLLOWERS to participate in this party hop.}
You will find the code right under the Linky Party where it says CLICK HERE TO ENTER
just under that it says: WHAT IS A BLOG HOP? GET THE CODE HERE
Click on GET THE CODE HERE and enter it into a post on your site.
You can grab the party button code in the FOOTER at Its So Very Cheri
You can grab info from my post if it helps you with your post.
If you want to add the BLOG HOP to your own site you will get lots of new followers(see rule #2)



So… what about you?  Want to join too?

CDC: Breads Top List of Salt Sources in U.S. Diet

ATLANTA (AP) – Bread and rolls are the No. 1 source of salt in the American diet, accounting for more than twice as much sodium as snacks like potato chips and pretzels.

That surprising finding comes in a government report released Tuesday that includes a list of the top 10 sources of sodium. Salty snacks actually came in at the bottom of the list compiled by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Breads and rolls aren’t really saltier than many of the other foods, but people tend to eat a lot of them, said Mary Cogswell, a CDC senior scientists who co-authored the report.

Salt is the main source of sodium for most people, and sodium increases the risk of high blood pressure, a major cause of heart disease and stroke. Health officials say most Americans get too much salt, mostly from processed and restaurant foods – not added from the salt shaker.

Experts have known that the sodium in breads and certain other foods can add up, but even CDC officials were amazed that just 10 foods are responsible for 44 percent of the sodium consumed.

“It’s possible to eat a whole bunch of sodium without it seeming salty,” noted John Hayes, an assistant professor of food science at Penn State, who was not involved in the report.

According to the CDC, breads and rolls account for about 7 percent of the salt that the average American eats in a day. Next on the list: cold cuts and cured meats; pizza; fresh and processed poultry; soups; fast-food hamburgers and sandwiches and cheese.

Rounding out the list – and accounting for about 3 percent each – are spaghetti and other pasta dishes; meatloaf and other meat dishes and snacks like potato chips and pretzels.

Health officials say no one should eat more than 2,300 milligrams of sodium a day, equal to about a teaspoon of salt. Certain people, such as those with high blood pressure, should eat even less. But average sodium consumption in the U.S. is around 3,300 milligrams, the CDC study found. Only 1 in 10 Americans meet the teaspoon guideline.

The amount of sodium in food types can vary. For example, a slice of white bread can have between 80 and 230 milligrams of sodium. One cup of canned chicken noodle soup has between 100 and 940 milligrams. And 3 ounces of luncheon meat has between 450 and 1,050 milligrams.

The new CDC report is based on surveys of more than 7,200 people in 2007 and 2008, including nearly 3,000 children. Participants were surveyed twice, each time answering detailed questions about what they had eaten over the previous day. Researchers then broke down what they ate into categories, and assigned sodium amounts.

Salt reduction has become a recent focus of public health campaigns, and some major food makers have taken steps or announced plans to gradually reduce sodium in their products.

CDC officials – who have long encouraged people to eat more fruits and vegetables – stopped short of advising people to lay off the bread. But they are encouraging consumers to read labels and, for example, buy brands of bread that have lower sodium.

There’s another way to consume less sodium. “Eat smaller portions,” Hayes said.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


Being a junior or a senior in high school I remember numerous people asking what my plans were after school. I had no idea, honestly. I never had even thought about going to college. Intact, I don't even remember anyone ever bringing it up. Other than a school counselor who told me I would never make it into a junior college, little alone college. He said this as a matter of fact since my grades were barely that of passing. The thing is my dad and I owned a janitorial company and I made a fair wage. Going to school was far less a consideration than just making it through high school. Working nights and school can be quite a challenge but I did it. I enjoyed it and I made darn good money too. The truth is I never really was a person that dreamed about getting married or having a family. I also never really imagined myself in a career. Then again when your making a decent living at 18 why worry about the future. Right?

Life changed at 20 years old when I learned I was pregnant with my first child. A year after he was born I chose to go back to school. Not only did I get into college but maintained a 4.0 my entire first year of school and was inducted into phi thetta kappa honor fraternity. I enrolled in liberal arts eventually switching gears to human services. After 3-1/2 years, my 3rd child and a break up with their father, I dropped out and moved back to my hometown.

Looking back I always had dreamed of going back and finishing my degree. Making something of myself. It wasn't until years later my foster care licensor pointed out I was making a difference. I was living that dream. I had been so busy raising my family I hadn't even noticed but all the small things in my life were adding up. Nearly every job I'd held, nearly every volunteer position I had committed to was defining who I really was.

As I continue to grow I've discovered what my life really is about. Not in a day, not in a year, but in my entire lifetime. I am a wife, a mom, a grandma, a daughter, a foster parent, i am a caregiver!

10 ways to love

Monday, February 6, 2012

I need a name

I'm a 5 week old girl black lab/weinhausen who was rescued. I'm in need of a name. I've been told I'm going to get to hunt. My family Loves to hunt, fish, camp and really loves the outdoors and family. I would like a cute name but not too boyish. Help!

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Four Pinterest-Inspired Recipes!...

These recipees are too good not to share. Take a look at their sihjt as well. Love them! Notes from the Nelsens: Cooking with Mom: Four Pinterest-Inspired Recipes!...: This past weekend, my mom and I spent the afternoon cooking up some delicious treats! Thank you Pinterest and all you awesome bloggers out ...

Friday, February 3, 2012

An Illness Even M.D.s Can Miss: Appendicitis in Children

An Illness Even M.D.s Can Miss: Appendicitis in Children
Parents -- and physicians -- often mistake appendicitis for a bad stomachache. Would you be able to spot it in your child?
By Debby Waldman -
Parents Magazine

When Catherine Holecko's 6-year-old daughter, Josie, complained of a stomachache the day before the family was to fly to California, Catherine and her husband, Jeff, briefly considered postponing. But Josie had eaten a large cinnamon roll and Jeff had also just had a stomachache. They figured Josie's symptoms would pass.

During the two-hour ride to the airport the next afternoon, Josie's stomach still hurt. Catherine treated her with acetaminophen and antacids. After arriving at their rented apartment in San Francisco, Josie threw up. At 3 a.m. she awoke, still in pain.

That's when Catherine called their family practitioner back home in Neenah, Wisconsin, for advice. Once the doctor heard Josie's symptoms, he told Catherine it was possible that it was her daughter's appendix and she should be seen by a doctor within the next four hours. "I wasn't thinking she had anything serious," she says. "It never occurred to me that a 6-year-old could get appendicitis."

The truth is, anyone with an appendix can get appendicitis, a painful inflammation of the hollow finger-shaped organ attached to the end of the large intestine. Untreated, an inflamed appendix can rupture, leading to a lengthy hospital stay for complications including abdominal infection and bowel obstruction.

When surgeons removed Josie's appendix 12 hours after her mother brought her to a San Francisco emergency room, it had already ruptured, probably days earlier. Catherine was overwhelmed with guilt. "We dragged her 2,000 miles from home when she felt so awful, and we kept giving her Tylenol and Tums. We were so clueless."

A Confusing Condition
Jenny Risher
Appendicitis eludes doctors too. Approximately 80,000 children in the United States suffer from it every year. Although it's most common in kids over age 10, more than 80 percent of children younger than 3 who have the illness already have a rupture by the time they reach the operating room. Many of them had been seen and sent home at least once by a health-care professional. That's because in the very early stages, the condition can be hard to diagnose, especially when patients are too young to accurately describe their symptoms.

"We'll have kids come in and say, 'My stomach hurts,' when they may have pneumonia or strep throat," says Geeta Singhal, M.D., head of pediatric hospital medicine at Baylor College of Medicine, in Houston. She coauthored a recent study in Pediatrics that addressed the confusion surrounding appendicitis. Pediatricians had to rank ten common ailments based on how commonly they were misdiagnosed; appendicitis came in fourth. "Children can't always point to their right lower quadrant and say, 'It hurts here,'" she says. "It can be challenging, depending on a child's developmental level and how verbal he is." Part of the problem is that the symptoms -- abdominal pain, loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, fever -- are common to so many conditions. And not every child will have every symptom.

The (Rough) Road to a Diagnosis
The appendix is often referred to by doctors as "vestigial," which means that it has no known function. We rarely think about it until it misbehaves. The problems begin when something in the intestines -- typically a hard piece of stool -- obstructs the opening to the appendix. Bacteria get trapped inside, and the irritated appendix swells. The intestine's natural function is to squeeze, moving food and waste through the digestive tract. The obstruction prevents it from squeezing. That leads to nausea and, in some patients, vomiting and/or diarrhea. The pain usually moves from around the belly to the lower right side of the abdomen during the first 12 to 24 hours after the obstruction begins. During that time, the pain will worsen, but it'll be easier for a doctor to recognize the problem.

Between 25 and 50 percent of children who develop appendicitis will have a rupture, which occurs when the appendix gets so inflamed its wall breaks down. The hole lets intestinal bacteria, stool, and mucus leak into the otherwise sterile abdominal cavity and cause a serious infection. Sometimes the rupture happens within the first 18 hours after the obstruction, but it can take several days -- or not happen at all.

The most accurate way to diagnose appendicitis is with a CT scan, but because it involves radiation, not all doctors will use it on a child. Ultrasound is slightly less accurate -- there is a 5 percent error rate compared with the CT scan's 2 to 3 percent -- but it's also safer, says Kevin P. Lally, M.D., surgeon- in-chief of the Children's Memorial Hermann Hospital, in Houston.

However, because only about 7 to 10 percent of children who come to the emergency room complaining of stomach pain actually have appendicitis, a stomachache alone doesn't guarantee a visit to the imaging department. A doctor's first step is to take a medical history and perform a physical exam. She may order blood work to determine whether there is an infection. Which tests are ordered depends largely on hospital protocol, the child's age, and the extent of the illness.

After a diagnosis, though, the surgery is straightforward, and the long-term prognosis for most children is excellent. If the child's appendix did not rupture, she'll generally leave the hospital within two days. But if it did, she'll usually stay between four and eight days because the infection caused by the rupture requires powerful intravenous (IV) antibiotics.

Tricky Complications
Surgeons have two methods for removing an appendix, both of which are performed under general anesthesia and take from 30 to 60 minutes. The technique used depends on the doctor, the hospital, and the child. In a traditional open surgery, the doctor makes an incision between a half inch and 2 inches on the right side of the abdomen. Josie had a laparoscopy, a newer procedure where the surgeon makes tiny incisions on the abdomen and uses a telescope and a camera to locate the appendix.

Unfortunately, complications after surgery are common, says Dr. Lally. About 5 percent of children develop a bowel obstruction. The treatment can consist of inserting a tube to drain what's causing the obstruction, or it may require further surgery. And 15 to 20 percent of children with a rupture will develop an abscess, an infection caused when pus collects in the abdomen. It's usually drained and treated with IV antibiotics for up to two weeks.

Like many patients recovering from a ruptured appendix, Josie wasn't allowed to eat anything other than ice pops and ice chips until her bowel began working again. After that, she was given solid food. She spent another two days in the hospital while doctors made sure her digestive system was functioning properly. She was on IV antibiotics during her entire hospital stay.

The appendectomy took a lot out of Josie -- and her family. "She wasn't eating and wasn't getting out of her hospital bed," Catherine recalls. "It became harder for me to imagine her feeling better. I thought, 'How can she bounce back from the state she's in?'" Before the doctors released Josie, they warned her parents that she could develop a fever or more pain.

Back home in Neenah three days later, that's exactly what happened, and she had to be admitted to the Children's Hospital of Wisconsin in Milwaukee. Hooked up again to IV antibiotics, Josie underwent several CT scans that eventually showed she had developed an abscess.

Josie needed to be sedated with a general anesthetic so that the surgeon could insert a plastic tube into her lower abdomen to drain the infected pus. The tube remained in place for three days. If the drain didn't work, or if she had had multiple abscesses, she probably would have required further surgery.

A Full Recovery
Jenny Risher
For all the trauma surrounding her experience, Josie doesn't seem to have bad memories of it. When passing the hospital a few months after being discharged, she announced what she would do if her friends wound up there: "I'll visit them and bring cards to help them feel better."

Catherine has a different take on the situation. "The whole incident really shook my faith in my children's robust good health as well as my own ability to recognize a serious problem when I'm faced with it," she says. "Thank goodness this one had a happy ending."

Dr. Lally's advice is simple: Use common sense. If your child is acting unusual or has severe pain, go to your doctor or to the emergency room. Try to write down the symptoms and share that information with the doctor. "You are partners," Dr. Singhal says. "Everyone wants the best outcome: a healthy, happy, pain-free child."

Could It Be Appendicitis?
If your child has these symptoms, ask your doctor whether an ultrasound or a CT scan is in order:

Loss of appetite, with or without vomiting or diarrhea
Persistent, unexplained belly pain in the lower right side that lasts more than 24 hours
Inability to cough, jump, or go over bumps in the car without pain
Difficulty walking and/or staying upright
"Rebound pain," so called because when you push gently on your child's belly it hurts more when you let go than when you pressed down
Originally published in the September 2011 issue of Parents magazine.

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HEART DISEASE our lives one year later

It was a year ago today that my husband came home from work and reluctantly shared he was having chest pain. I immediately questioned a heart attack. I think he knew it but was reluctant as our anniversary is February 4th. I'm not sure what he was planning to gain by waiting.... Maybe he was in denial?

It's been a year now and although we initially made several positive changes, looking back I can admit we are getting way to comfortable once again. We take on way more stress than we should, our eating habits are coming back (it's expensive to eat right), and neither of us has yet to even attempt to quit smoking. All things we definitely need to get back on track with.

In recognition of national american heart month I hope you will all take a look at the link below of the warning signs and be familiar with them. I also suggest taking a first aid and CPR class. You never know when you may need them. If it's been awhile take a refresher class. Recommendations change along with techniques.

As for me I'm blessed that we've had the opportunity to celebrate yet another anniversary.

Are you wearing RED today?

National Wear Red Day isn’t just a fashion statement -- it’s a chance to talk about the fact that heart disease kills more women than all forms of cancer combined.

Health advocates want women, especially ones between the ages of 40 and 60, to be bold when talking to their doctors about their risks for heart attack.

Although the National Wear Red Day is only once a year, its a good reminder to get annual checkups and find out your blood pressure and cholesterol. Keeping on top of these basic numbers can save your life.

The American Heart Association has been taking the month of February to remind men and women to take care of their hearts by not smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, seeing your doctor for annual checkups and to excerise.

National Wear Red Day promotes heart health; Feb. 3 is reminder that heart disease is top killer of women
Heart disease kills more women than all forms of cancer combined


Mongos Grill Review

This being the 2nd day after moms chemo she's generally really down and sleeping quite a bit. However, today she's wide awake and perky. That being said we stopped at mongo's grill for lunch over the noon hour.

We arrived at 11:50am. There were a few people a head of us and the line moved quite quickly. We were pleasantly greeted and seated immediately by the host who took our drink orders and explained some new options on the grill.

We gathered up our food at the bar and gave it to the cooks. The cooks were pleasant and talkative d well as entertaining. The food was cooked to perfection.

I had the chicken Alfredo which was a limited item from their world of tastes special. It was extremely helpful that I had a recipe as I'm not very good at deciding what to throw together. My mom had the crab which she did herself and was very pleased with. Both of us were very happy with the food and had more than enough to eat.

By the time we left the place was packed and still moving at a steady pace. I highly recommend trying mongos which Carries very healthy food options and even has a list of what to eat for heart health.

Kudos to mongo's grill.

Do you live life or are you just existing?

Many of us, including myself, often find ourselves stuck in life living day to day merely existing. Our lives become repetitious. That's when I pull myself out of the boredom and start living life again. It's something many people suffering from health problems also can find themselves falling into.

It would be so easy to give up on life and just exist when faced with a devastating illness such as my mom having stage 4 cancer. However, her love for life has brought new opportunities and she's the first one to tell you she hasn't done everything yet.

Shes the person who always enjoyed travel and dreamed of one day doing that after retiring. My Dad, on the other hand, is more of a home body. When she was diagnosed we made every effort to give her these opportunities.

Last summer she went with a friend up the north shore. The two of them had a blast. We seen to it she accomplished her number one dream when we sent her and my Dad to see Tony Stewart.wEndy had the time of their lives in Kansas city last fall. Dad even left the state. And now as she prepares to head to Vegas in march she will once again visit friends and see the big NASCAR parade. While some would just exist she is still choosing to live life to the fullest.

Let us all remember to live each day like it's our last.