Friday, February 22, 2013

Social Benches by Jeppe Hein

Did you ever hear of Social Benches?  Well, I guess all benches are kind of social.  If you are in a park and sit on a bench there is a very good chance that you will start talking to someone who also might be sitting on the same bench.
Jeppe Hein is an artist based in Berlin and Copenhagen.  Below are "Social Benches" that he designed.  Extremely cool!  These benches are sure to get a conversation started!

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Benefits of Whole Foods

photo via

While surfing the web I came across, a website dedicated to healthy eating.  Natural Ways lists the benefits of whole foods.  Amazing!  The list is long so I am posting it word for word.  I cannot vouch for all the info but it is extremely interesting and sounds very credible and extremely important to know!!! 
The following statement is listed in their anti-aging section - "Sugar will age you faster than any other substance." (That one scares me because I consume too much sugar) 
The following is not meant to treat disease but maybe if we follow it we can help to prevent disease.  As always check with a healthcare professional if you have questions regarding your health.



Medicinal Benefits of Whole Foods

For the first 5000 years of civilization, humans relied on foods and herbs for medicine. Only in the past 50 years have we forgotten our medicinal "roots" in favor of patent medicines. While pharmaceuticals have their value, we should not forget the well-documented, non-toxic and inexpensive healing properties of whole foods. The following list is but a sampling of the health benefits from whole foods.

Apple. Lowers cholesterol and risk for cancer. Has mild antibacterial, anti-viral, anti-inflammatory estrogenic activity. High in fiber, helps avoid constipation, suppresses appetite. Juice can cause diarrhea in children.
Asparagus. A super source of the antioxidant glutathione, to lower cancer risk.
Avocado. Benefits circulation, lowers cholesterol, dilates blood vessels. It's main fat, monounsaturated oleic acid (also concentrated in olive oil), acts as an antioxidant to block artery-destroying toxicity of bad-type-LDL cholesterol. One of the richest sources of glutathione, a powerful antioxidant shown to block thirty different carcinogens and to block proliferation of the AIDS virus in test tube experiments.
Banana and Plantain. Soothes the stomach. Good for dyspepsia (upset stomach). Strengthens the stomach lining against acid and ulcers. Has antibiotic activity.
Barley. Long known as a "heart medicine" in the Middle East. Reduces cholesterol. Has anti-viral and anti-cancer activity. Contains potent antioxidants, including tocotrienols.
Beans. (legumes, including navy, black, kidney, pinto, soy beans and lentils). Potent medicine in lowering cholesterol. One-half cup of cooked beans daily reduces cholesterol an average 10 percent. Regulates blood sugar levels. An excellent food for diabetics. Linked to lower rates of certain cancers. Very high in fiber. A leading producer of intestinal gas in most people.
Beets. Richer than spinach in iron and other minerals. The greens are helpful in cases of anemia, tuberculosis, constipation, poor appetite, obesity, tumors, gout, pimples and helpful in the elimination of irritating drug poisons. Beets are one of the best foods to relieve constipation and they are also good for obesity.
Bell Pepper. Rich in antioxidant vitamin C. Helps to fight off colds, asthma, bronchitis, respiratory infections, cataracts, macular degeneration, angina, atherosclerosis and cancer.
Blueberry. Acts as an unusual type of antibiotic by blocking attachment of bacteria that cause urinary tract infections. Contains chemicals that curb diarrhea. Also has anti-viral activity and high in natural aspirin.
Broccoli. A unique package of versatile disease-fighters. Abundant in antioxidants, including quercetin, glutathione, beta carotene, indoles, vitamin C, lutein, glucarate, sulforaphane. Extremely high in cancer fighting activity, particularly against lung, colon and breast cancers. Like other cruciferous vegetables, it speeds up removal of estrogen from the body, helping suppress breast cancer. Rich in cholesterol-reducing.fiber. Has anti-viral, anti-ulcer activity. A super source of chromium that helps regulate insulin and blood sugar. Note: cooking and processing destroys some of the antioxidants and anti-estrogenic agents, such as indoles and glutathione. Most protective when eaten raw or lightly cooked.
Brussels Sprouts. Cruciferous family possesses some of the same powers as broccoli and cabbage. Definitely anti-cancer, estrogenic and packed with various antioxidants and indoles.
Cabbage (including bok choy). Revered in ancient Rome as a cancer cure. Contains numerous anti-cancer and antioxidant compounds. Speeds up estrogen metabolism, is thought to help block breast cancer and suppress growth of polyps, a prelude to colon cancer. Eating cabbage more than once a week cut men's colon cancer odds 66 percent. As little as two daily tbsp. of cooked cabbage protected against stomach cancer. Contains anti-ulcer compounds; cabbage juice helps heal ulcers in humans. Has anti-bacterial and anti-viral powers. Can cause flatulence in some. Some of these important compounds are destroyed by cooking. Raw cabbage, as in cole slaw, appears to have stronger overall health value.
Carrot. A super source of beta carotene, a powerful anticancer, artery-protecting, immune-boosting, infection-fighting antioxidant with wide protective powers. A carrot a day slashed stroke rates in women by 68 percent. The beta-carotene in one medium carrot cuts lung cancer risk in half, even among formerly heavy smokers. High doses of beta carotene, as found in carrots, substantially reduces odds of degenerative eye diseases (cataracts and macular degeneration as well as chest pain (angina). The high soluble fiber in carrots depresses blood cholesterol and promotes regularity. Cooking can make it easier for the body to absorb carrot's beta-carotene.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Baby Shower Cake

How awesome is this cake!  If you know anyone with an upcoming Baby Shower this would really make a statement!  Cake by Ayse's Cakes.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The New Trend for Spring = Black and White

Good morning!  How was your weekend?  Did you have a two day or three day weekend?
It was beyond cold this weekend in New York so lunch at Bloomingdales's was perfect.  My daughter and I met my niece at Bloomies.  We ate lunch, walked around the store to see all the new trends, and then headed back downstairs for the best frozen yogurt.

 Black and White with an accent of Cobalt Blue. 

Do you like the Black and White Trend for Spring?  What are your favorite Spring colors?

Friday, February 15, 2013

Vintage New York City Subway Photos

These photos were taken by Stanley Kubrick in 1946.  Awesome photos.   I can imagine being there.  Notice the woven seats.  I kind of remember them.  Do you?

This must have been a very late night ride.

Photos via Chris Wild via

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Photos from Fashion Week

 During Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week models pose at the Rose Bar at Gramercy Park Hotel on February 11, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Mark Von Holden/Getty Images)  What do you think???

Love this dress by Carolina Herrera.  Fashion Week at The Theatre at Lincoln Center on February 11, 2013 in New York City. (Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week)

(L-R) Vogue Creative Director Grace Coddington, Vogue magazine Editor-in-chief Anna Wintour, and Vogue Fashion Market/Accessories Director Virginia Smith at Carolina Herrera.  (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images for Mercedes-Benz Fashion Week)  

Monday, February 11, 2013

Apple Roses for Valentine's Day.

I found this recipe on  It was submitted by Nicole.  I don't know Nicole's last name so I couldn't give her the credit for this beautiful idea of hers.   So pretty!

Rose Apple Tart Recipe

  • single pie crust recipe
  • Four or five large apples, sliced thinly
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1 t cinnamon
  • 2 t lemon juice
  • 2 T butter, melted
First thing's first:  make your dough.  Or buy it.  I promise not to tell.  Here's my favorite recipe for pie crusts (including the awesome Vodka trick).  If you use this recipe, half it; it's written for a double crusted pie.
Press the dough into your tart pan and brush with melted butter.  I used a long, rectangular one, because that's what I have.  But wouldn't these look absolutely darling as miniature individual sized tart pans?  One rose per person?  
Next up, core and slice your apples.  Don't peel them first!  You want the rosy skin contrasting with the yellow flesh of the apple to make the rose effect more pronounced.  

Slice your apples thinly.  Really thinly. I'm talking paper thin.  Use a mandolin if you have one.  Sprinkle apples with the sugar and cinnamon.  Toss with the lemon juice and remaining melted butter.

Now it's time to start forming the roses.  If your apple slices are too crisp and won't bend enough, zap them in the microwave a bit.  Just 10 seconds or so at a time, until they just start to become pliable.
To create the center of the rose, roll one apple slice in a tight coil.  Wrap a second apple slice around the first one.  Continue adding slices of apples around the perimeter, making sure to overlap each petal slightly to get a nice rose effect.

Do you see what I mean about using the coring technique I linked to above?  If the petals didn't have one nice, flat edge, layering the rose petals would be a much trickier balancing act.

Fill in any gaps between the large roses with little rosebuds--just one or two apple slices coiled exactly like the centers of the large roses.

Bake just like you would a standard apple pie.  375 degrees, about 30 minutes, until the crust is cooked through and starts to turn golden.
This apple tart was delicious just as it was.  But the next time I make it, I'm going to turn it into a caramel apple tart, by adding a slurry of brown sugar and melted butter to the bottom of the tart before layering in the apples.

Friday, February 8, 2013

The benefits of our furry friends.

My friend Doug and his niece recently posted an article about the benefits of pets.....and it made me realize the importance of Teddy, my 4 legged friend.
As I type this post Teddy is sitting on my lap very interested in what I am doing.   He just wants to be near me.  When I leave and walk out the door I look up to see his little face looking out the window.  And I know he is thinking "mommy don't leave me."  And when I come home I get the most welcoming greeting as if he hasn't seen me in weeks!
Unconditional love.  That is what I get from Ted.  When I have no one to talk to I always have Teddy.  And he always listens (and agrees with what I have to say.)  I always have a television partner.  He jumps on my lap and likes whatever show I want to watch!
 I can't imagine not having a dog.  They fill up your home and your heart with so much love.  Do you have one pet or more?
And our furry friends can do so much more!
Click here to read the wonderful article written by Danielle Einav, LCSW and Douglas Segan, MD.

And here is Teddy!

Always in the same room with me.

How sweet is that face?

Teddy's favorite blanket.

He must have heard something outside.

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