Pumpkin vs. Apple

IMG_6705.JPGPumpkin and apple are my favorite flavors of all time. However, where I am from, Connecticut everything apple flavored tends to stay out all year round making pumpkin flavor a once a year festivity. Always around this time of year the memes on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram show up asking which one is better apple or pumpkin. To me both of them are equal, so I did a little research on both apples and pumpkins about their nutritious values and why they should be enjoyed year round rather than the Fall.

IMG_6691.JPGPumpkins are bright orange squash that pop up this time of year. A fun festivity is going out buying the best pumpkin you can find and carving a jack-o-lantern. Many houses have pumpkins out on display as a fall decoration. But, pumpkins are good for you, in a healthy way. Loaded with Vitamin A, this squash can help with your vision and boost your immune system with Vitamin C. Another value of pumpkins is younger looking skin that can help protect your skin from UV rays by using the pulp the make a face mask. Pumpkins can also help with cancer prevention and treating diabetes. You can read more on the pumpkin benefits here: https://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/6-surprising-health-benefits-of-pumpkin#1

IMG_6702.JPGFor apples they tend to stick out here in New England all year round. I almost never have trouble finding apple cider in the Spring, Summer, and Winter when I want a glass. Not to mention, apple picking is a fun fall activity where you can find all different types of apples to make your favorite treats like pies and cobblers. But, apples have nutritional value that adds to a positive healthy diet. Free from fat, sodium, and cholesterol apples contain fiber that can help with digestion and loaded with Vitamin C. Not only that they contain Boron that helps protect the bones and Quercetin on the skin to help protect brain cells. To add to this, they have nutrients that are linked to helping prevent diseases like diabetes and lung cancer. To read more on apples click on this link: https://www.stemilt.com/health-nutrition/apple-health-nutrition/

IMG_6696.JPGThere is so much more to apples and pumpkins that they should be enjoyed year round. They are more than just fall treats and flavorings that we add to coffee and tea. Apples and pumpkins are real healthy treats that I enjoy all year round. This doesn’t mean that I stock up on all things pumpkin and apple during the fall for the rest of the year. But, I never hesitate to look for them during other seasons either.

Authors disclaimer: Please note that I am not a licensed nutritionist, medical professional, and/or doctor. The facts that I found are based on internet research. If you have any questions about these health facts please contact your physician and/or nutritionist.

October Musings

IMG_6691.JPGOctober is my most favorite month of the year. Fall is my favorite season and Halloween is my favorite holiday, so I can never get enough of October. Today, I made an apple pie for the first time from scratch, crust and all with help from pinterest. Pumpkins are all over for decorations. Pumpkin is my favorite flavoring, I take it all year round ask anyone who knows me. But, the month of October will soon be gone.

IMG_6840.JPGThe festivities that come with October are celebrate all over. Not only do we celebrate Halloween at the very end of the month, but we enjoy corn mazes, apple picking and bonfires. Yes, some of these things do start in September and go into November, but it seems October is the month that starts it all. The fairs are already in full swing, as they start in September and by the time October rolls around there are more subtle amusements, before the holiday season hits.

IMG_6823.JPGOctober, for me, means the calm before the storm. It is the month when the leaves start to fully change. A time to slow down before the hectic holidays come. October is the month where you can wear sandals and sweatshirts at the same time. There is nothing more enjoyable to me than the month of October all over.

Visiting Childhood

IMG_8988.JPGA couple of weeks ago my family took a small vacation to places in Maine that we haven’t been to in a LONG time. Returning to these spots brought back memories from my childhood as we had talked about heading up there for so long. In fact, we don’t think we have been up that way in ten years. This trip brought back memories as we made our way through Maine.

IMG_8983.JPGAll along the way we stopped at spots from my childhood. One of the places was L.L. Bean in Freeport, Maine where the big hiking boot is. Another place was a book store in Damariscota a couple of hours away. The bookstore was a frequent place where we stopped because there was no wifi, internet and next to no cable, so we were up there with no connection to the outside world. Although, the books were pretty overpriced it seemed right to buy a couple of books there as they are still up and running while competed with Amazon and the Kindles.

IMG_8979.JPGHowever, quite possibly the most anticipated spot was Moody’s Diner in Waldoboro, Maine. This is the same restaurant that we would end up eating at every single night we were there. In fact, we even had the same waitress from the last time we were there. She didn’t recognize us, but the food and service was still the same. The one part of the menu we all had to look forward to was their pie. Eating each slice of pie brought back little pieces of my memory from childhood. If you are ever in the area, I would suggest going to Moody’s as place to stop.

IMG_8987.JPGAll in all, the point of this blog post is simply about getaways like this being relaxing. Up in Maine, there were no worries we had to concern ourselves with. The only part we had to worry about was having a good time and relaxing. Yes, the times did change with the usage of cell phones and internet. But, the place still remained the same with their stores as it did many years ago.

Authors note: I do plan on posting a photo of the Giant L.L. Bean boot, but am having some problems with downloading.

9/11 Remembrance

September 11 Tribute

Photo from: https://hollywoodlife.com/2017/09/11/celebrities-911-anniversary-2017-tributes-september-11/

On September 11, 2001 is a day the United States of America will never forget. A group of cowardly terrorists attacked innocent civilians going about their lives by hijacking four airplanes. They flew two planes into the World Trade Centers, one into the Pentagon, and on one the plane crashed in a field in Shanksville, Pennsylvania because the passengers fought back. There were firemen and policemen who rushed into the burning building to save the victims from burning buildings giving their lives in the end. All over America there were memorials and moment’s of silence for those who passed away.

Happy Labor Day!

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Happy Labor Day to all! There are many people who are part of the work force who are honored today. The social and economic achievements that the workers have made. From building buildings to paving roads to car repairs to creating ideas for energy efficiency there are many reasons Labor Day deserves to be celebrated. Happy Labor Day to all! There are a million reasons to celebrate this day.

Years Ago

IMG_7957.JPGComing up with a name for this next blog post was not easy. That much I will say. Have you ever watched a movie that took place in the early 1900’s? Have you ever read a book and imagined what it would be like to live without electricity? Have you ever wanted to go jump into your favorite sitcom you watched with your parents growing up?

IMG_8010.JPGAs I was scrolling through these photos I began to think of what it was like to live in a time like from before. Growing up we hear our parents and grandparents tell us how easy it was for them before technology took over. They talk about having to go outside to play and not having a television to watch. Heck, I even heard stories of what it was like to grow up in a house with out running water.

IMG_6844.JPGWhen I was growing up I was treated to movies and storybooks where princesses lived in castles with candles aglow. When I grew older I began to read books, like the American Girl doll series and Nancy Drew, across different time periods where my imagination would wander. In the American Girl Doll books, there were stories about girls having to walk to school rather than take the school bus. There were even stories where their education was limited based on their gender and social norms during the time period. But, the part that took me into those books the most were the historical events that were taking place. From the American Revolution to World War II, I would leave reading these books wondering what it was really like to live through those time periods. There are times when I wonder what questions I will be asked from children about my childhood and the events that happened.

IMG_7849.JPGIn Nancy Drew, there seemed to always be a time when she would get into a pickle and unable to contact anyone quick enough due to their being no cellphone or computer. Today, we depend so much on these things that we forget that there was a time period where they didn’t even exist. When I first started reading Nancy Drew, I would always ask why she didn’t just call someone or search the internet for the answer. I would ask these questions aloud to get the same answer from my parents, which was: they weren’t invented yet.

IMG_6673.JPGI would always ask my parents what it was like to grow up without computers. I would have no problem asking my grandparents what it was like not having a television and having to walk to school. They would shrug and tell me that they didn’t think anything different as there was no such thing. I have wondered what it would be like to time travel to a period to see what it was like for myself, specifically the roaring twenties, World War II, and Shakespearean times. I want to go to Woodstock to experience it first hand, go to a soda shop in the 1900’s in New York City, and see the Hindenburg fly over before tragedy struck. These are moments stuck in time that we see, however, we can’t experience them all first hand. But each time I am reminded that there are things we have now that they didn’t have then. I can’t help but wonder what it would be like to wake up in a time period with no electricity, no television, no running water and no computers.

IMG_6676.JPGHow different would that be? It would be quite the adjustment. Going in the past to hear Paul Revere race through Boston to announce “The British are Coming” and to hear Abraham Lincoln deliver the Gettysburg Address and to meet Harriet Tubman, Edgar Allan Poe and Elizabeth I. These are just a few examples of things I want to experience that are frozen in time. A moment from years ago, a person who left an impact that changed lives for better and a time when things seemed simpler. All that is left from these times are stories that survive today because we don’t want to forget them.

National Book Lovers Day

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As an avid bookworm, I could not pass up writing a blog post today. National Book Lovers Day popped up all over twitter and instagram encouraging people to read and get into books. There are many books that I have read over and over. There are many authors that, no matter how bad the book is, I can’t stop reading their work. Below is a list of my favorite books, authors, and series.

Books:

The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald

1984 by George Orwell

War and Peace by Leo Tolstoy

Macbeth by William Shakespeare

Pollyanna by Eleanor Porter

Authors:

J.K. Rowling

F. Scott Fitzgerald

Edgar Allan Poe

William Shakespeare

Virginia Woolf

Series:

Harry Potter by J.K. Rowling

Nancy Drew by Carolyn Keene

The Dollanganger Series by V.C. Andrews

Lord of the Rings by J.R.R. Tolkien

The Mediator by Meg Cabot

There are many authors and books I have read over the years. But the list above are my favorites of all time.

 

Sunflowers

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There has to be one flower in the summer that brings me joy. Bright yellow petals surrounding a dark brown center. But, not all sunflowers are the same. There are some with layers that add to the before meeting the center. Some grow tall and others stay small. No sunflower is the same.

IMG_8888.JPGNear where I live there is a sunflower farm. There they sell sunflowers, ice cream, and hayrides. However, the main attraction is always the sunflowers. On this trip in particular I was able to catch a couple of photos of a sunflower blooming and buds. Seeing these sunflowers in different stages was remarkable; a true form of art that only nature can bring.

IMG_8909.JPGSunflowers are only in bloom for a short amount of time. But, never the less they are something to look forward to on a hot summer day. Being in the middle of a heatwave is not fun, even when the air conditioner doesn’t seem to cool you down. I can’t help but love the look of sunflowers on a hot summer day.

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Anastasia Romanov: 100 Years Ago Today

A dark cloud hangs over the life of the real Anastasia RomanovOne of the greatest mysteries of all time that has fascinated me is the disappearance of the Grand Duchess of Russia Anastasia Nikolaevna. On July 17, 1918 she and her family, the Romanovs, were murdered during the Russian Revolution. Even though her entire family perished during the assassination that was meant to eliminate the Russian Royal family and they succeeded.

On this day the last Tsar of Russia Nicholas II along with his wife Tsarina Alexandra, their four daughters Grand Duchesses Olga, Tatiana, Maria, and Anastasia and their son Tsaravich Alexei were murdered. I don’t plan on going into the historical details as I want to focus on the mystery of Anastasia. Even though it was confirmed that she was murdered that night through DNA evidence an air of mystery has stuck with her name.

Today, there are many people who still believe that she survived that night. In the past there have been impersonators, most noticeably Anna Anderson from Germany, who had managed to fool some of her relatives. None the less, people to this day still believe that Anna Anderson is the lost Russian princess. Lets face, after all the people who she managed to convince she is the Grand Duchess Anastasia there could be a new form of DNA technology that proves that she had been telling the truth all along.

Ultimately, the mystery of the Grand Duchess Anastasia has stood the test of time with movies, books, musicals, and songs based on her life. The mystery of her life and death has fascinated me because it seems as though it is never ending. Every now and then when I am reading up on her disappearance/death I will come across a piece of information outside of DNA evidence, like Anna Anderson’s knowledge of the family tree that to many proves that she is her or Anastasia a piece of fabric from clothing that night that prove she was murdered.

I acknowledge that everyone has their opinions on this case with many believing that she died that night. I too, believe that on July 17, 1918 she passed away. But, as much as I believe this there is something about the mystery of Anastasia that draws me to her story, partially because part of me does want her survival from that night to be true. Honestly, with all of the evidence surrounding Anastasia it would not shock me if somewhere down the road we hear evidence again that proves that she did survive the night or more evidence that proves she past.

Photo Credits: https://www.sheknows.com/entertainment/articles/1137005/anastasia-20th-anniversary-true-story-behind-film

HEAT WAVE!!

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This past week has been a scorcher! With temperatures hitting the 80’s combined with humidity it felt like it would never cool off. During the heat wave I either stayed inside or swam in the pool. The heat felt like it would never end but, today, the temperature dropped. After thunderstorms and head advisories it feels good to be able to step outside and not breaking a sweat after two seconds.

IMG_6768.JPGNever the less, heat waves are something that we all have to deal with. Staying cool and beating the heat are common sayings during this time. Water is a huge need during this time. Water keeps us hydrated and cools us down. I don’t think without water surviving this heat wave would’ve been possible. The one thing that everyone can agree on during a heat wave is to keep water close at all times.

IMG_1252.JPGHowever, what amazes me the most about heat waves has to be how quickly it cools down. Waking up this morning I was actually chilly. Even though the temperatures were in the high sixties, I was still cold. I changed into something warmer for a Summer day. To be completely honest it feels weird to say I had to change into something warmer in the middle of Summer. I guess it is safe to say you have to stay warm during the summer time as well.

Heat waves are something that we all have to deal with. Even though the temperature did not go past the high 80’s where I am, the humidity made the days sticky and uncomfortable. So far this Summer has been up and down with the heat. But, today was a good day as it was a break from heat and humidity.