Amber Alert

Locking Lips Boasts Health Advantages

We've all heard things like kissing burns calories (2 to 3 per minute), and generally boosts our self esteem (how could a smooch or two not?). But consider this:

Did you know that we use 30 facial muscles when kissing (or furthermore, that we even have 30 facial muscles)? Say goodbye to baggy cheeks.

The extra saliva produced during a kiss helps break down oral plaque.

Kissing creates adrenaline, which prompts your heart to pump more blood through your body. Allegedly, frequent kissing has been scientifically proven to decrease blood pressure and cholesterol, too.

Nervous System
Kissing is said to calm your mind by increasing levels of oxytocin, a calming hormone, which creates a "peaceful feeling."

That said, what are you waiting for?! Grab your loved one and help give each other a little lift of health (and love)!

Thought of the Day - 4/4/09

Today you are you, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is youer than you.
~~ Dr. Suess ~~

100 Things To Do

I am constantly amazed when I hear people, adults and children alike, say they are bored. Who has time to be bored? There is always things to do, some fun things, some mundane things, but things to do. Jokingly and to just to prove my point, I said I could come with a list of 100 things to do . . .

  1. Read emails.
  2. Reply to emails.
  3. Write new emails.
  4. Create a new blog.
  5. Write a blog entry for current blog(s).
  6. Go blog hopping.
  7. Call friends.
  8. Call family.
  9. Play Solitaire.
  10. Do puzzle books.
  11. Play card games with kids.
  12. Play board games with kids.
  13. Read a magazine.
  14. Read a book.
  15. Read a book with kids.
  16. Do flashcards (math facts) with kids.
  17. Clean bathroom.
  18. Clean kitchen.
  19. Clean laundry area.
  20. Clean living/family room.
  21. Clean bedroom.
  22. Clean second bedroom.
  23. Clean third bedroom.
  24. Clean basement.
  25. Sweep front porch.
  26. Sweep back porch.
  27. Clean out garage.
  28. Wash laundry.
  29. Dry laundry.
  30. Fold laundry.
  31. Put laundry away.
  32. Scrub walls.
  33. Vacuum.
  34. Clean out refrigerator.
  35. Go for a walk.
  36. Go for a walk with kids.
  37. Do stretches (from OT and PT).
  38. Exercise.
  39. Ride a bike.
  40. Go bicycling with kids.
  41. Go bowling.
  42. Write a letter.
  43. Write a poem.
  44. Write a list of things to do.
  45. Write goals.
  46. Write up a budget.
  47. Learn something new.
  48. Attend local community class on topic of your choice.
  49. Create cards.
  50. Create scrapbook pages.
  51. Create ATCs (artist trading cards(.
  52. Send RAK (random acts of kindness).
  53. Organize scrapbook supplies.
  54. Scan cards, scrapbooks pages, and other art.
  55. Upload art and photographs to online site.
  56. Scrapbook with kids
  57. Draw or do other art.
  58. Draw or do other art with kids.
  59. Read a newspaper.
  60. Listen to the radio.
  61. Watch TV.
  62. Watch TV with kids.
  63. Watch a movie.
  64. Watch a movie with kids.
  65. Record new outgoing message for cell phone.
  66. Record new outgoing message for house phone.
  67. Surf the Internet.
  68. Play games on the Internet.
  69. Read mail at groups.
  70. Find Internet groups to join.
  71. Bake cookies, brownies, etc.
  72. Bake with kids.
  73. Cook.
  74. Cook with kids.
  75. Go grocery shopping.
  76. Go to the local park.
  77. Go to school playground.
  78. Go to the store, any store.
  79. Go to the post office.
  80. Take pictures.
  81. Upload pictures to computer.
  82. Make phone calls for appointments.
  83. Write in journal.
  84. Write in kids' daily activity notebook.
  85. Pray.
  86. Pray with kids.
  87. Do meditation.
  88. Do meditation with kids.
  89. Do research to find a new church home.
  90. Read the Bible.
  91. Read the Bible with kids.
  92. Update kids' chore charts.
  93. Organize papers.
  94. Find new clients/customers for Usborne Books and Memory Works.
  95. Find new clients for advocacy work.
  96. Volunteer.
  97. Clean windows.
  98. Wash the dishes.
  99. Dry the dishes.
  100. Put the dishes away.
  101. Send a text message.
  102. Plant a garden.
  103. Go on a nature hike with kids.
  104. Go on a scavenger hunt with kids.
  105. Go on a picture scavenger hunt with kids.
  106. Give kids a hug.
  107. Give kids a kiss.
  108. Snuggle with kids.
  109. Take a shower.
  110. Take a bath.

I was pretty proud of myself for being able to come up with over 100 things to do in less than 5 minutes. Now write your own list of 100 things to do so next time someone says, there is nothing to do, you can tell them to read your list.

Drink More Water

Why drink more water?

The following will probably amaze and startle you.

One glass of water shuts down midnight hunger pangs for almost 100% of the dieters studied in a University study.

Lack of water is the #1 trigger of daytime fatigue.

Preliminary research indicates that 8-10 glasses of water a day could significantly ease back and joint pain for up to 80% of sufferers.

A mere 2% drop in body water can trigger fuzzy short-term memory, trouble with basic math, and difficulty focusing on the computer screen.

Drinking 5 glasses of water daily decreases the risk of colon cancer by 45%, plus it can slash the risk of breast cancer by 79%, and one is 50% less likely to develop bladder cancer.

Are you drinking the amount of water you should every day?

Water - The Beverage Your Body Needs Most

Drinking water is so important for good health. When you were a kid in school, you learned that each molecule of water is made up of two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. You may also have learned that it was great fun to fill up your squirt guns with water, at least until the principal caught you. What you may not have learned, however, was how much water you needed in order to be a healthy human being.

Why You Need to Drink Water

Your body is estimated to be about 60 to 70 percent water. Blood is mostly water, and your muscles, lungs, and brain all contain a lot of water. Your body needs water to regulate body temperature and to provide the means for nutrients to travel to all your organs. Water also transports oxygen to your cells, removes waste, and protects your joints and organs.

Signs of Dehydration

You lose water through urination, respiration, and by sweating. If you are very active, you lose more water than if you are sedentary. Diuretics such as caffeine pills and alcohol result in the need to drink more water because they trick your body into thinking you have more water than we need.

Symptoms of mild dehydration include chronic pains in joints and muscles,lower back pain, headaches and constipation. A strong odor to your urine, along with a yellow or amber color indicates that you may not be getting enough water. Note that riboflavin, a B Vitamin, will make your urine bright yellow. Thirst is an obvious sign of dehydration and in fact, you need water long before you feel thirsty.

How Much Water do You Need to Drink?

A good estimate is to take your body weight in pounds and divide that number in half. That gives you the number of ounces of water per day that you need to drink. For example, if you weigh 160 pounds, you should drink at least 80 ounces of water per day. If you exercise you should drink another eight ounce glass of water for every 20 minutes you are active. If you drink alcohol, you should drink at least an equal amount of water. When you are traveling on an airplane, it is good to drink eight ounces of water for every hour you are on board the plane. If you live in an arid climate, you should add another two servings per day. As you can see, your daily need for water can add up to quite a lot.

Twenty percent of your water need will come from the foods you eat. The rest of your water need should come from the beverages you drink. Water is the best choice. Sodas have a lot of sugar in them, so if you drink sodas, you may take in more calories than you need. Herbal teas that aren't diuretic are fine. Sports drinks contain electrolytes and may be beneficial, just look out for added sugar and calories that you don't need. Juices are good because they have vitamins and nutrients.

Caffeinated beverages will also add to your daily water need. Even though caffeine is a diuretic, if you regularly consume caffeine, your body will regulate itself to that diuretic effect.

Drink Enough Water

It may be difficult to drink enough water on a busy day. Be sure you have water handy at all times by keeping a bottle for water with you when you are working, traveling, or exercising. If you get bored with plain water, add a bit of lemon or lime for a touch of flavor. There are some brands of flavored water available, but watch for extra calories.

Thought of the Day - 4/3/09

I'm a pretty successful guy, but when I go to an occasional reunion at my prep school, in ten seconds I'm not the CEO of a Fortune 500 company. I'm back to feeling like a clumsy nerd everyone else had fun picking on. Crazy, isn't it?
~~ Father of a Former Patient ~~

Thought of the Day - 4/2/09

Start by doing what is necessary, then what is possible, and suddenly you are doing the impossible.
~~ St Francis of Assisi, 1197-1253 ~~

Thought of the Day - 4/1/09

Once upon a time when people made more of their own things, they created more stories about their life experiences. They told these tales to each other... to celebrate, mourn, worship, and mostly to connect with each other. Sharing real-life stories was an essential element in forging friendships, alliances, families and communities. It brought individuals a greater intimacy with each other and, simultaneously, a stronger sense of self.
~~ Jack Maguire ~~

Spread the Word to End the Word

Most people don’t think of this word as hate speech, but that’s exactly what it feels like to millions of people with intellectual disabilities, their families, and friends. Using “retard” as a term of derision is just as cruel and offensive as any other slur.

Spread the Word to End the Word will raise the consciousness of society about the dehumanizing and hurtful effects of the R-word and encourage people to pledge to stop using it. America will be asked to declare their support for more respectful and inclusive language, specifically that referring to those with intellectual disabilities.

Have you taken the pledge? Let us know by signing Mr. Linky below.

Thought of the Day - 3/31/09

Your future is yours and yours alone. So don't let anyone else influence your hopes and wishes or tell you what goals you should start making for yourself. These people don't know you better than you, no matter how smart they are.

365 Days of Christmas is Hosting a Giveaway

Check out my blog 365 Days of Christmas for our first big giveaway. Judy Pancoast, a new friend, artist, composer, and producer of children's music has graciously offered a CD, "The House on Christmas Street" for our drawing. Go to 365 Days of Christmas for more information.

Around the 'Net - Free Songs for Kids

A new friend of mine, Judy Pancoast -- artist, composer, and producer of several kids CDs -- has just uploaded two more songs to Free Songs for Kids. This site offers original and FREE children's music. This is a wonderful site where many children's artists have contributed tunes that you can download for FREE for your children. The site also offers lyrics, sheet music, videos, lesson plans, and more. Check it out!

Make Me Laugh Monday - Me

The boss wondered why one of his most valued employees had not phoned in sick one day. Having an urgent problem with one of the main computers, he dialed the employee's home phone number and was greeted with a child's whisper.


"Is your daddy home?" he asked.

"Yes," whispered the small voice.

"May I talk with him?"

The child whispered, "No ."

Surprised and wanting to talk with an adult, the boss asked, "Is your Mommy there?"

"Yes ."

"May I talk with her?"

Again the small voice whispered, "No ."

Hoping there was somebody with whom he could leave a message, the boss asked, "Is anybody else there?"

"Yes," whispered the child, "a policeman".

Wondering what a cop would be doing at his employee's home, the boss asked, "May I speak with the policeman?"

"No, he's busy," whispered the child.

"Busy doing what?"

"Talking to Daddy and Mommy and the fireman," came the whispered answer.

Growing more worried as he heard a loud noise in the background through the earpiece on the phone, the boss asked, "What is that noise?"

"A helicopter," answered the whispering voice.

"What is going on there?" demanded the boss, now truly apprehensive.

Again, whispering, the child answered, "The search team just landed a helicopter."

Alarmed, concerned and a little frustrated the boss asked, "What are they searching for?"

Still whispering, the young voice replied with a muffled giggle, "Me."

Join me in the fun and giggles by sharing a silly story. Add your link to your Make Me Laugh Monday post to Mr. Linky below. (All links not leading directly to your post will be deleted. All posts should be funny in some way. Yes, this is up to interpretation. Ideas include riddles, comic strips, jokes, silly graphics, funny lyrics, etc.)

Keep Your Cellular Phone Safe

Have you ever wondered why phone companies don't seem interested in trying to prevent the theft of mobile phones? If you have ever lost your phone or had your phone stolen, and if you are on a plan, you still have to pay the remainder of the plan. On top of that you have to buy another handset and enter into another contract. This is more revenue for the phone company.

There is a simple way of making lost or stolen cellular phones useless to thieves. The mobile phone companies know about it, obviously, but don't share this tip with their customers. So I'll share:

To check your mobile phone's serial number, type star-pound-zero-six-pound (*#06#) on your phone:

A fifteen digit code will appear on the screen. This is unique to your handset. Write it down and keep it safe.

Should your mobile phone get lost or stolen, you can phone your service provider and give them this code. They will then be able to block your handset, so even if the thief changes the Sim card, your phone will be totally useless. You probably won't get your phone back, but at least you know that whoever stole it can't use/sell it either.

Why I'm a Girl Scout Leader

I'm not a Girl Scout Leader for the easy hours, high pay, parents' gratitude power or prestige.
I'm a Leader because I want the world for your daughter and mine
A world she can share and help shape,
A world of love and laughter where she can show compassion.
I want to help her learn to finish anything she starts and do it well and to guide her to know her worth with a deeper understanding of herself.
I want to help shape women who have strength of character and are sensitive to the needs of others.
I want them to be the best they can be - whether as career women or as homemakers, wives, or mothers who are the hearts of the family.
In giving of my time and myself I reap rewards far beyond what I give.
I receive a better world for my children and future generations.
I'm a Girl Scout Leader because I care.

Thought of the Day - Bonus #2

Thought of the Day - 3/30/09

Dreams are free
so free your dreams.

Thought of the Day - 3/29/09

If you keep focusing on everyone else’s journey, you’re going to stop paying quality attention to your own. What I mean by quality attention is attention free from jealousy, worry, envy, strife, etc.; just a calm, objective look at your own journey that can provide answers to help move you forward or to even determine what that journey should be in the first place.
~~ Brian Kim ~~

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