Grace brings us face-to-face with aging as she relates her experiences, her memories, advice for surviving the aging process...with Grace. This is a place for humor, sharing, and learning as well as what I hope are some entertaining meanderings of my thoughts.
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Tropical Traditions is America’s source for coconut oil. Their Gold Label Virgin Coconut Oil is hand crafted in small batches by family producers, and it is the highest quality coconut oil they offer. You can read more about how virgin coconut oil is different from other coconut oils on their website: What is Virgin Coconut Oil?
a Rafflecopter giveaway The good folks at Tropical Traditions provided me with a free sample of this product to review, and I was under no obligation to review it if I so chose. Nor was I under any obligation to write a positive review or sponsor a product giveaway in return for the free product.
This Giveaway is open to residents of US and Canada. The winner will be chosen at random and will be notified by email. Winner must reply within 48 hours or another winner will be selected.
Note to Canadian Entrants: Growing Old With Grace and The Thrifty Frog Blog, nor Tropical Traditions are not responsible for any customs or duties charges which may be assessed by Canada.
Important Info: If you click on a Tropical Traditions link here and decide to place an order with them, please enter User ID: 12125243 after you select "Referred by a Friend" on your first time order. I will receive a voucher for each referral and you will still get a free copy of their Virgin Coconut Oil Book.
Memorial Day is a federal holiday observed annually in the United States on the last Monday of May. Formerly known as Decoration Day, it originated after the American Civil War to commemorate the fallen Union soldiers of the Civil War. (Southern ladies organizations and southern schoolchildren had decorated Confederate graves in Richmond and other cities during the Civil War, but each region had its own date. Most dates were in May.) By the 20th century Memorial Day had been extended to honor all Americans who have died in all wars. Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces. As a marker it typically marks the start of the summer vacation season, while Labor Day marks its end.
Many people visit cemeteries and memorials, particularly to honor those who have died in military service. Many volunteers place an American flag on each grave in national cemeteries.
By the early 20th century, Memorial Day was an occasion for more general expressions of memory, as people visited the graves of their deceased relatives in church cemeteries, whether they had served in the military or not. It also became a long weekend increasingly devoted to shopping, family gatherings, fireworks, trips to the beach, and national media events such as the Indianapolis 500 auto race, held since 1911 on the Sunday of Memorial Day weekend.
4.^ Matthew Dennis, Red, White, and Blue Letter Days: An American Calendar (2002)
Our Pastor reminded us this weekend that this holiday is not about BBQs, but remembering our fallen military personnel - those heroes from all service branches who gave their lives so we can live in freedom. When I researched for this post I was surprised that I had either forgotten or never knew the origin of this important day ~ the last Monday in May. Our freedom definitely is not free and I am so thankful to all of the brave men and women who serve for me and my family! Thank you to all Veterans!
When I was around Jr High age, we lived on a five acre parcel in a neighborhood that was once a huge orchard. Everyone had fruit trees and most had peonies. Our front two acres was yard with cherry, apple, plum, apricot and peach trees, as well as maples and elms. There were bridal wreath shrubs bordering the street.
Each year, just days before Memorial Day, the peonies would bloom in pinks, reds and whites. I don't remember how people knew, but flocks of strangers would come to our neighborhood to buy the peonies to place on their loved ones graves on the holiday. All of us sold bunches until every last bloom was gone.
It was a special time and in stuck in my memory forever. I remember seeing the ants on the buds...they are part of the blooming process. And the beauty of all of the plants growing in the yard. The times my Dad mowed over them and my Mother upset that he did. The people who stopped by our house and others to purchase that beauty for their loved ones lost.
Peonies will always hold a special place in my heart. Another blessing to be counted as we approach Memorial Day!
Tantalizing aroma...tempting sweets...too hot to be baking in Arizona - so what's going on in Pixie's Test Kitchen? Remember when I posted about my names? I love to change into different personnas from time to time. So, Pixie's Test Kitchen...was baking brownies to perform a little test on two brands of Coconut Oil.
Since I have been doing research on Coconut Oil in the last couple of weeks, I have acquired 3 brands of the stuff. After reading books, blogs, and articles on the subject I was pretty sure I knew which would be the winner of my little blind test.
Asking HB (HoneyBunny) was a no-brainer. He may be diabetic, but that hasn't turned off his sweet tooth! He tasted a small sample from each batch. His consensus was that one was definitely coconutty in taste. It was very noticeable, but tasty. The second one also had coconut flavor, but it was not "in-your-face" taste. It was milder and also delicious.
Then I trotted across the culdesac to take blind samples to my neighbor, friend, BFF, Pandora. I hope you have visited her blog - Pandora - Out of the Box. She is a Christian, a poet, a photographer, and a wonderful writer. Anyway...she had one brownie from each batch, but didn't know which one was what. Here is her response:
Okay.On the red plate marked TT, brownie was chewy and had good flavor. On the yellow plate marked LA, brownie was lighter.Flavor was good, but I could taste coconut. I guess I'd have to say that I couldn't pick which one I liked better--sorry!But did I help????
And, folks...that is exactly what HB and I thought. We liked the flavor of the first batch, which was the Lou~Ana brand, but we also liked the milder tasting batch made with Tropical Traditions. It's a toss-up!
From my research I have learned that what we buy in our local grocery stores is often not as fresh as what can be purchased online. I believe that explains the stronger flavor. I'd say it is a matter of preference and budget which one a person uses.
Watch for more on Coconut Oil and my research on the subject on my other blog - The Thrifty Frog Blog. I'll be posting this topic there going forward. It is such an interesting subject and there are so many aspects to it! Stay tuned! I will have a Giveaway there soon!
Fire season has begun here in the desert Southwest. Arizona currently has three pretty good sized wildfires going and several smaller ones. Today, south and west of my city, there were three fires to cause concern to all of us. One is out, but may have had a flare-up an hour or so ago. It was the smallest, but the closest to structures.
The others are still burning. The worrisome one started across the border in Mexico and this afternoon it crossed into Arizona and is burning the dry grass that grew back after last June's Monument Fire. So far it is on the other side of the mountains from us. But, that's where it was last year when the winds shifted and increased, sending it right to us! The forecast for the week is hot, dry and windy. Not what we want to hear.
My friend who hasthe alpacas was one of the first to be evacuated last year and if the winds shift again, she could be right in the path again. She is hitching her trailers to trucks and getting ready if she needs to get her animals out quickly. It is scary.
Even those of us who live in town have learned that we are not safe if the winds carry the fire towards us. Last year hundreds were evacuated, some more than once. My section of the map would have been the next to be in pre-evac status. That frightened me. I was so focused on the fear of the fire and worrying about my friends that I could not make myself think clearly and get our "go bags" packed and our important papers, etc. in one place in case we needed to pack up and leave.
I will be more prepared this year. It is better to be ready and not need those things than to have 15 minutes to grab what you can and go. Preparing...packing...praying.
I used photos that I gathered from various facebook pages last year. If you took those photos or know who did, I would love to give credit to the photographers.
When you reach a certain age or point in life you grow things and make noises that you just don't want to admit. I creak and squeak and make other embarrassing sounds at the most inconvenient times. Come on...fess up ~ don't you have this problem from time to time? We used to giggle when it was our teacher or Grandma. Now it's a whole different scenario. I AM the Grandma!
What about moustaches? Huh? Huh? Why me, I say...and no one can give me a good answer! It's all wrong! Women should NOT need to shave their upper lips and chins. Oh, we chuckle and joke about having stray eyebrows, but really...this is not funny.
Isn't it enough that I can't see well enough to get my makeup on smoothly? Now I must stick my face right up to the mirror and check for a hideous moustache! At first it was just one or two hairs to tweeze out. Now, now so much...it requires major razing! Well, okay, I am exaggerating. It's not quite that bad...yet.
Could I put in a request for a milk "stach" instead? I like milk and it isn't so degrading. Movie stars splash their milk lines all over the magazines nowadays.
Or maybe a grass moustache? I used to do this when I was young. It looked okay and was totally acceptable. Besides, I really like green!
What is your solution to a womanly moustache? Assuming that you are of that certain age like me? Shave? Wax? Flaunt? I'd really like to know!
Are you living with aching joints? Back, knees, hips? You and I may have to live with arthritis, but we don't have to give in to it, right? I knew you'd agree! Exercise and medication can help, along with diet, but there is no real cure.
Arthritis is more than just a pain in the...wherever. It is a chronic illness. Dealing with it daily can lead us right to that unwanted destination ~ depression and fatigue, even anxiety.
Here are some tips to help us fight back:
I am hoping there were a few things here that helped you. Do you have other ways of dealing with your aches and pains?
Don't forget the sunscreen when you go outdoors! And, wear a hat, too! Here in Arizona, we are at the top of the list for the most skin cancers, so we hear this a lot. It can't be said enough. Let me tell you my story...
When I was young I spent my summers at the local swimming pool - Peony Park in Omaha, Nebraska. Anyone remember it? It was built like a little lake, with sandy little beaches around the edge, diving boards and docks in the middle and packed with kids out of school. My Mom dropped my brother and I off and picked us up later in the day.
I am fair-skinned and burned easily. I tanned, but compared to my friends, I looked white as a ghost. I tried everything to get a tan...baby oil, oil with iodine and lying for hours in full sun ~ with no sunscreen. Oh, no...we didn't use sunblock! We used sun enhancers. No one knew about or mentioned the possibility of skin cancer back in the sixties.
Even in my twenties and thirties I was making regular visits to a tanning salon in that endless quest for the perfect tan. Tsk. Some of us are slow learners.
Now, in MY sixties, and even earlier, I have had to have several cancers removed from my face, hand, and legs. These are all places that I managed to get repeated bad sunburns. Now, I have yearly exams in an attempt to catch other spots before they turn into cancer. I must be ever vigilant.
So, when I take part in our annual Relay For Life event, as I did Mother's Day weekend, I have the dubious honor of being a Survivor ~ a cancer Survivor. When I realized I fit into this category, it was a shock, and scary. After all, mine have all been removed with a little cutting. I didn't suffer the "joys" of chemotherapy or radiation. I didn't need major surgery. I felt like a cheater...like I really didn't belong. But, I do. Cancer is cancer and I am still here. So, I do what I can to support our Relay event and support those who's battles are far more daunting than mine.
Do you have a cancer story? Were you a sun-worshipper in your teens?