Monday, September 16, 2019

Book Review: Hello, Crochet Friends! by Jonah Larson

This little book packs a powerful punch! Hello, Crochet Friends: Making Art, Being Mindful, Giving Back: Do What Makes You Happy written by young Jonah Larson and his mother Jennifer Larson is the most uplifting and motivational book I've read in years.

Hello, Crochet Friends! written by Jonah Larson


Hello Crochet Friends!: Making Art, Being Mindful, Giving Back: Do What Makes You Happy is one part autobiography, one part inspirational, and one part crafts. It includes topics of international adoption, school behavioral problems, and the importance of finding one's passion. 

Jonah Larson is an 11 year old crocheting phenom. I came to know about him from looking for crochet patterns and tutorials on the internet. This young man has a gift with crochet. His talent is nearly unbelievable. Watching his little hands fly as he works on his current projects is mesmerizing to me.  And all the more impressive when I learned a bit more about him.

Jonah was adopted by the Larsons when he was a baby. He began crocheting at age 5 by accident - when a single crochet hook was found in a bag of items. It became clear very quickly that crochet was his thing.

I work with children in a school that is focused on addressing their behavioral and learning difficulties. I run a small crochet club, teaching them just the basics (sharing my limited skills), because I know that crochet is a wonderful coping skill for some children. I ordered Jonah's book so that our students could read about a child who loves crochet. 

I was moved to tears when I received the book and read how Jonah also struggled with significant disruptive behaviors in school and how crochet helped him. And not only has crochet helped him manage his behaviors in school, he is using his art to give back to those in need in the country he was born. An astounding story and life lesson for all of us.

What this book is:

  • an age-appropriate picture book about an 11 year old who was adopted from an Ethiopian orphanage
  • a book that is written in a gentle, uplifting, honest and encouraging voice
  • an inspirational book - encouraging everyone to find their passion and do it
  • a helpful book for teachers and school staff - showing the positive results of thinking outside the box and helping students identify what calms and encourages them
  • an encouraging book for children who struggle with behaviors - helping them to feel as though they are not alone and that something can change
What this book is not:
  • this is not a book of crochet patterns
  • this is not a crochet tutorial
I'd like to express my gratitude to Jonah and his mother for writing this book and sharing this story. It has touched me and has been well-received by the students in my little crochet club. You are inspiring to so many others.


From the Amazon listing: "Hello, Crochet Friends! is the first title in the KWiL Publishing's Rock Star Kids series of books about young people doing incredible things in the world". Personally, I am looking forward to future books in the series!

Related Links:

While I am not as talented as young Jonah, I do love crochet. I am able to do beginning and easy intermediate patterns. I have written about a few of the easier patterns. If you are thinking about beginning crochet, look for one of the many online tutorials, find someone that matches your style, and just begin.

My review of Dabbles & Babbles Done in a Day pattern. This pattern is pretty, more interesting than just straight crocheted rows, and is versatile. I've made several different sized blankets with several different types of  yarns with this pattern. I have also used this pattern to create a long, rectangular piece that was used as a type of shawl for an elderly gentleman. 

Although loom knitting is not the same as crochet, it is an easy way to make interesting and beautiful hats. If you can't quite enjoy crochet, you could create your own treasures with loom knitting. The flower applique is crocheted and from the only flower pattern I've ever been able to complete successfully. This pattern is Flowers by The Dozen by Yarnspirations and I review it here






Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:

Sunday, September 15, 2019

4 Unconventional Ways to Create a Cozy Room for the Winter

Four Unconventional Ways to Make a Room Cozy

During the colder months, we begin to hibernate. With hibernation comes cozy blankets, hot cups of tea, movie nights and fireplaces.

If your home still has that open airy spring and summer feel but you'd like to create a cozy home environment for the winter, here are some easy ways to achieve that goal.

1. Add Drapes in Unexpected Places

Most of the time we think of windows when we think of drapes. However, drapes add depth, texture, and warmth to a room and do not have to be restricted to window dressing.

Do you have french doors or pocket doors that lead to another room? If so consider placing drapes over the doorway entrance. The draperies add another level of depth and coziness to both rooms or areas they cover. Instead of closing the doors, close the drapes, or leave them swagged open for a warming effect. Use a decorative curtain rod and install it close to the ceiling to keep the rooms feeling open and higher in height. Take a look at an elaborate example of this concept here.

Do you have a wall-to-wall bookcase or cabinet? If so, warm up the room by adding draperies in front of it. Swag them, pull them open, or close them. Either way, the effect will be lovely and warm and different. Again, keep the curtain rod at the ceiling level if possible.

One final tip, for the best effect, select heavier drapes with form and structure. Consider your decor. If your room needs more art and pattern, choose art drapes or patterned drapes. If your space is already filled with enough pattern, go with a contrasting or matching solid color.

2.  Layer the Lighting in a Room

Ambient lighting from multiple sources creates a relaxing, inviting, and warm feeling. If you have an overhead fixture or pot lights, put them on a dimmer switch so you can dim down the brightness. Also, don't forget that you can create mood lighting with your lamps by adding three-way bulbs.

Another lovely way to warm up a room is by using an essential oil diffuser that lights up. You'll not only get the benefit of aromatherapy you'll also get a lovely multi-colored low-level ambient light.

A Light-Box is another way to add ambient lighting warmth. This particular Light-Box is lovely and it's the kind of thing that keeps on giving. It features interchangeable quotes, sayings and celebration cards. It's not only soft lighting, but it also displays positive or festive messages.

3.  Add Faux Fur to a Room

There are a number of ways to add faux fur to a room:
  • The first is to strategically position a small faux fur rug on the floor or use a larger faux rug for spacious rooms. Here's a lovely bedroom featuring a sizeable faux fur white area rug.
  • Add one or two faux fur Ottomans. They come in several smaller stand-alone sizes and make a lovely soft warm accent to a room. Check out this contemporary room featuring two upholstered steel Ottomans. 
  • Place a small faux fur rug over the back of a chair, over an ottoman or on the back of a couch. It can also double as an item to use as an extra place to sit on the floor when needed. Check out what one looks like over the back of a chair
4. Create a Cozy Area for Family Game Night

Granted, most of us play board games at either the kitchen table, a coffee table or on the floor. If you're one of the lucky ones who can create a warm and cozy gaming area like this one, then you won't need to implement any of these suggestions:
  • Place multiple thick and lush floor cushions in a decorative spot so you can pull them up to the coffee table for family game night
  • For larger family rooms, add table and chairs to the room. Use chair cushions to soften the look then place your favorite family games in a basket under or near the table
  • If games will be played at the kitchen or dining room table, make it a warm and inviting experience by adding a standing popcorn machine, a basket with blankets in the corner to warm up with while playing, and a scoreboard to track the winners




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:

Saturday, September 14, 2019

Rainbrella Golf Umbrella and Grabber Hand Warmers Review

Source: Pixabay

It was a quite chilly and very rainy Saturday with the youth baseball tournament games in full swing. With no time for make-up games, the games had to be played. This resulted in wet & chilly ball players and even wetter parents in the stands and on the sidelines.

I was working at Ace Hardware in our small Iowa community that day. As the wet morning wore on, we were inundated with parents coming in to purchase umbrellas and hand warmers.  Before noon, we had completely sold out of the Rainbrella Golf umbrellas and the Grabber Hand Warmers. 


Rainbrella Golf Umbrella


Rainbrella Golf Umbrella

These large umbrellas by Rainbrella (available in 42 inch and 60 inch diameter) are perfect for golf outings and any other sporting event (such as our local youth baseball tournament). The umbrellas are multi-colored and collapsible. 

Large umbrellas can definitely save the day and these Rainbrella umbrellas were much appreciated by the kids and parents alike at the ball park on this particular day. 


Grabber Hand Warmers



Grabber Hand Warmers

An assistant coach to one baseball team came in to Ace and bought dozens of 2-pair packages of the Grabber Hand Warmers for the kids sitting in the dugouts waiting for their turn at bat and on the field.  He told me the boys' hands were freezing and he needed to keep them warm so they could play.

These portable heat in the palm of your hand Air-activated Grabber Hand Warmers keep hands and fingers toasty for over 7 hours. No shaking or kneading required; just open the package and put the Warmers in your glove or pocket for a few minutes to start the process. All Grabber Warmers are designed for one-time, disposable use. 


Summary


While the umbrellas and hand warmers worked out well for our youth baseball games, they are also very handy for other outdoor sporting events such as football games. Plus, they are perfect for hunters and fishermen on similar cold and wet days. So best to stock up ahead of time and not wait until bad weather forces a run on them.  Since we were the only store in our small town carrying these umbrellas and hand warmers, we sold out quickly. 

These products are available in a number of places, such as Ace Hardware, Walmart and online at Amazon.






Quick Links:





(c) Wednesday Elf Review 9/14/2019





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:

Friday, September 13, 2019

Glass by M. Night Shyamalan - Movie Reviewed

Glass is the final movie in this M. Night Shyamalan movie series!

Glass by M. Night Shyamalan - Movie Reviewed
I'll tell you in advance, I have seen an interview with Shyamalan and he does not plan to have any additional movies in this series.  I think that is a mistake.  This movie left me wanting more.  Of course, wanting more is the sign of an excellent movie.

I have previously reviewed the first two movies in this M. Night Shyamalan series:  Unbreakable and Split.  If you haven't already read those reviews and seen those movies, I recommend them before you watch Glass.

Glass could be a stand alone movie, but I believe seeing the other two movies is best.  They introduce the characters and set everything up for this movie. It is hard for me to say for certain since I have seen the previous movies several times, but I'm not sure everything in this movie would be completely clear if you don't have the basis of information and background from Split.

Once you have viewed all three movies, I would love to have you return to this review and tell me which movie in the series was your favorite.  I definitely have a favorite and I suspect everyone will have a clear preference.

I'm going to do my best to give you a review of Glass that won't spoil either of the movies for you in case you haven't seen the previous two.


Glass Movie Synopsis

 
There are three main characters in Glass. Each possesses at least one superhuman characteristic. All find themselves in a battle of good vs. evil and they are not on the same side.

 GlassCheck PriceBy now, you may already know Samuel L. Jackson is Glass, or Mr. Glass.  His real name is Elijah Price.  Elijah was born with a rare disease (osteogenesis imperfecta) that makes his bones break easily. In this movie, Elijah requires a wheelchair for mobility.  However, Elijah is a brilliant man and though he is physically limited, he is mentally superior. 

David Dunn (Bruce Willis) seems like a mild-mannered, average man with a grown son.  Together, they run a surveillance company, but they also have a side venture. David Dunn is an extremely strong vigilante with a sixth sense. His son is his point of contact for research and quick information. When David is on a mission, he and his son, Joseph, stay in constant communication.

Then there is Kevin Wendell Crumb (James McAvoy) who suffers with DID (Dissociative Identity Disorder), more commonly referred to as a split personality.  Crumb fights the battle between good vs evil within himself, as well as in the outside world.  As I stated in my review of Split, James McAvoy is an exceptional actor.  His performance alone makes this movie worth watching.

The movie opens with 4 teens being held as food for the imminent beast. David Dunn is determined to find the kidnapped girls. However, before he can free the girls, he comes face to face with their kidnapper who is surprised to find a worthy opponent.  But, neither David nor the kidnapper realize they are both prey for a totally different adversary.  


My Conclusion and Recommendation of Glass


Like all Shyamalan movies, Glass is full of unexpected events with a shocking ending. Even as a Shyamalan fan, I didn't expect the ending.  It took me over a week before I could write this review without expressing too much emotion in my choice of words.

If you prefer a realistic ending, you will love this movie.  If you watch movies as an escape from reality, you are likely to be disappointed.

I watched this movie with my son and my husband. While we were all taken aback by the ending, we each had a different opinion or rating of the movie overall.  This is one movie where every individual will have to judge for themselves.  

Regardless, how can you resist a movie that includes Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, James McAvoy, and M. Night Shyamalan!







Previously Reviewed on Review This!
 
Unbreakable by M. Night Shyamalan - Movie ReviewUnbreakable by M. Night Shyamalan - Movie Review
Unbreakable is an exceptional thriller movie & the beginning of a great series. M. Night Shyamalan is a master of suspense and unexpected twists.



Split by M. Night Shyamalan - Movie ReviewSplit by M. Night Shyamalan - Movie Review
Split is the best psychological thriller that I have ever watched. Almost every emotion a person could feel is toyed with in this movie as we helplessly watch.






Check Out More Movie Reviews at
ReviewThisMovies.com

House of Sylvestermouse




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:

Thursday, September 12, 2019

Review of Historic Stonington Lighthouse and Museum

Stonington Connecticut is a delightful small town built around Stonington harbor.  We visited there on a beautiful July afternoon and parked in the lot along the harbor.  I then walked back up the hill to photograph the historic stone lighthouse.


History of Stonington Lighthouse

Stonington lighthouse was built in 1840.  It is a wonderfully preserved example of a mid-19th century lighthouse. The tower sits on a hill just up from the harbor and is 35 feet tall.  It was used for navigation until 1889, when it was replaced by another navigational aid out in the harbor.  The lighthouse is now used as a museum that explores the life and history of Stonington's seafaring people.  


Visiting the Inside of the Lighthouse

The museum is open seasonally and when you tour the museum you may also climb the 29 steps up the tower.  I climbed the steps and enjoyed taking photos in the museum and around the lighthouse grounds.

The brochure I was given when touring the lighthouse states that the seaside village of Stonington has been the " home to farmers, and fishermen, sailors and sea captains, explorers and entrepreneurs for more than 360 years."


Walking the Lighthouse Grounds- Views from the Back


Zazzle Products from my Photos





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Review of the Best Two Books on Prayer I've Ever Read

Review of the Best Two Books on Prayer I've Ever Read
Scan of my two books. Image created on PicMonkey


I'll Never Get Rid of These Two Books on Prayer

I bought these books back when they were published in the early 1970s. I began working at Logos Bookstore in Westwood in 1972, and as long as I worked there I could borrow and read anything on their shelves any time I wanted to.

We had three cases of books on Christian devotional and prayer life. I must have read half of what was in those cases during my nine years at Logos. Of all those books I read, these are the two books I bought about prayer. They are the keepers.

Hallesby Makes It Simple


I recently started rereading Hallesby's book. It's taken me two weeks to get through the first chapter -- 34 small pages. Why? Because every sentence is packed with important thoughts to ponder.  The chapter attempts to define what prayer actually is. Hallesby says, "Prayer is the breath of the soul, the organ by which we receive Christ into our parched and withered hearts."

Photo © B. Radisavljevic. Quote added.


If you're as old as I am, approaching my eighties, and have been a Christian for as long as I've been, since I was twelve, you've probably had a lot of teaching about prayer. You've heard why you should pray, how you should pray, when you should pray, and with what attitude. You've probably heard what topics you should pray about and in what order. You've probably heard you need to pray in faith with no doubting in order for God to answer your prayer.

If you're a bit like me, you've sometimes started to pray and gotten intimidated by all you've heard. Sometimes I get so tripped up by all those details and how-tos I can hardly pray at all. I feel quite helpless as I mentally check the details off my mental list. After all, I want to make sure I'm praying in a way that God will hear and answer.

Hallesby addresses my condition in his first chapter. He says helplessness is our best prayer,  and that the call of the helpless heart to the heart of God is more effective than any words we can utter. He compares our helpless condition before God to that of the helpless child dependent on his mother's care. A tiny infant cannot tell you what he wants and needs. He just cries. And a mother's heart is always tuned to hear those cries and help.

The prayer of an infant is his cry to his loving parent.
Created on Get Stencil from public domain image it provided. I added the quote.

I'm still rereading the  rest of the book but it does address some of the difficulties people encounter in prayer, prayer as work, what it means to wrestle in prayer, misuses of prayer, forms of prayer, and more. The book is practical and very readable. I believe this is the first book anyone wanting to develop a serious prayer life should read on the subject. Find reasonably priced used copies at Biblio, a site for independent booksellers. This link to one copy will also lead you to the others.  You can find a newer expanded edition for Kindle on Amazon.


The Hidden Life of Prayer by D.M. M'ntyre (or McIntrye)


If you want to go beyond what you've learned from Hallesby, it may be time to pick up The Hidden Life of Prayer. The author ministered in England and Scotland for over fifty years before entering Heaven in 1938. He led a life of prayer and in his book he often quoted other prayer warriors. These quotes are often in the footnotes, which I'm often prone to skip. But in this book you mustn't skip them or you will miss a lot of the treasure.

What some people today may find difficult about the book is the language the ideas are dressed in. The style and vocabulary may intimidate some of today's readers, especially if they are young. Academics may be more comfortable with it. But those who are willing to make the effort will find it rewarding.


It's full of quotes from historic Christian figures who accomplished much in their service for Christ. One quote I found on page 26 was from a book, Waiting on God, by Dr. A.B. Davidson. I'd like to share it will you.

Quote on what it means to wait on God in prayer
Image created on Get Stencil App with public domain photo it supplied. I added the text.


"To wait is not merely to remain impassive. It is to expect -- to look for with patience, and also with submission. It is to long for, but not impatiently; to look for, but not to fret at the delay; to watch for, but not restlessly; to feel that if He does not come we will acquiesce, and yet to refuse to let the mind acquiesce in the feeling that He will not come."
Contrast M'intyre's definition of prayer below with the one I shared near the beginning of this post from Hallesby:

"Prayer is said to be the gathering up of all the faculties in an ardour of reverence, and love, and praise. As one clear strain may succeed in reducing to harmony a number of mutually-discordant voices, so the regnant impulses of the spiritual nature unite the heart to fear the name of the Lord."  [sic]
 To find treasure, we often have to dig deep. We have to be willing to exercise our minds. This is not a book one skims like a blog post. But if you are at the right stage of your prayer life and your desire to have it mature even more is great, this may be the next book on prayer you should read. Its 94 pages are packed with spiritual nutrients. Like the Hallesby book, it is easily found used at a price anyone can afford. Find it  at Biblio or at Amazon.




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Flower Art For Kids Reviewed

Kids Making Flower Art

I found some flower art for kids to give to my youngest granddaughter for her birthday this year. She enjoys doing all sorts of crafty things so after reviewing some options, the kit that I purchased just seemed like a perfect match for her age and her personality.

flower-art
Flower art by mother nature
image courtesy of pixabay.com

The kit is called Random Acts of Flowers and fits my little sweet pea (pun intended) to a "t". I can see her making a small bunch of flowers to give to someone in a random act of kindness. She is so in tune with the emotions people are experiencing around her and would delight in making someone smile with a little gift.


Teaching Kindness With Crafts


The kit includes 75 sheets of tissue paper, 12 floral stems, 12 gift tags, a hanging vase and a bandit mask. Why the mask? This is supposed to be random and anonymous...besides kids love it. What is not included is a pair of scissors and you will also have to supply the kind soul of a child or adult. It is the most important ingredient in the mix!

So, making these flowers and then finding a place to hang them so that people can smile as they take one from the hanging bouquet is only part of the fun. Those gift tags that can be attached to a flower are supposed to have a message on them. The encouraged message is that whoever takes the flower is supposed to go do something nice for someone else. Don't you just love that?

Added to the benefit of spreading kindness one little action at a time is the fact that every purchase of one of these kits pays it forward a little more. A donation is made to a charity that takes re-cycled flowers along with words of encouragement to health care facilities to promote the emotional well-being to residents. I love that!


A Gift that Keeps Giving


Another thing I loved about this flower art for kids kit is that it plants that seed of kindness but it doesn't have to stop once the original supplies are used up. It is so very easy to buy more tissue paper. The children can make their own little gift tags and flower stems can be replenished. The hanging vase might be taken away but they can use their imagination to make another one. 

What do you think? Would you give a child a gift like this?





Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:

Monday, September 9, 2019

Favorite Fall Lawn Gadgets Reviewed

Oh no! What happened to summer? I say that every September though most of September is technically still summer.

September is actually I think the best month for the northern United States. The air is crisper, the humidity has decreased and the leaves are just beginning their journey through the colors. Fall also means lawn work, garden clean up, Fall planting and preparing the lawn and garden for a snowy winter.

My Favorite Fall Lawn Gadgets 

The Bagster - On Demand Debris Removal

If Fall clean up involves heavy materials whether it be concrete, wood or trees then The Bagster is a great alternative to dispose of heavy loads. Simply purchase The Bagster bag either online or at a big box store, fill the bag and schedule the pick up!


Find the full review here and see if your area qualifies for The Bagster.


Greenworks Leaf Blower

This is one of my favorite lawn tools of all purchases. The lightweight Greenworks Leaf Blower is so versatile.

I use it all year to blow leaves and debris off the driveway or deck, blow leaves to dispose of in the Fall and even use it for a Car Hack to blow dust out of the car.

Read the full review here of this easy to maneuver Leaf Blower.

City Pickers Raised Garden Bed

I really enjoyed this garden bed on wheels during the summer and will transition this raised bed garden for Fall planting. Maybe a pumpkin?!? I plan on rolling the bed into the Florida room for the winter and begin herb planting come spring.


Read the full review here of this rolling garden bed perfect for the yard, deck or patio.


Blue Shoes Disposable Shoes

Fall means rain, mud and leaves in my area of the country. Do you have trees with those itty bitty leaves which stick to everything and every shoe?

These affordable disposable shoes I have found invaluable for yard work in any weather. Pop the shoes on and dispose of in a jif if needed. If the conditions are dry the shoes can be used as a cover and then reused.

Read the full review here of these little shoe savers.


Top Ten Hallmark Christmas Movies

I know, these are not a lawn gadget. But Fall means Hallmark Christmas Movies are in the near future. As I recall the Christmas movies began at Halloween last year.


Find the full review here.

A few new favorites from last Christmas to add to the list:

  • Christmas At Pemberley Manor
  • Christmas At The Palace
  • Christmas On Honeysuckle Lane






Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:

Sunday, September 8, 2019

7 Ways You Can Make the Ceiling Look Higher in a Room

7 Ways to Make the Ceilings Look Higher


1. Use Draperies to Create the Illusion of a Higher Ceiling

If you've longed for high ceilings but know the likelihood of that happening is slim to nil, use a visual trick with floor-to-ceiling draperies. Instead of putting the curtain rod directly above the window frame, place the curtain rod at ceiling height level. Install the rod on the wall or the ceiling, however, it's more common to see the rod on the wall. By having the drapes start at the ceiling, your eyes are drawn upwards giving the room the illusion of height.


2. Do You Have a Popcorn Ceiling with a Ridge?

When popcorn ceilings were popular, some were designed with a three or four-inch ridge of smooth drywall. If your home has this, paint that small ridge around the room the same color as the walls. Having this ridge painted draws the eye upward and gives the room the illusion of having a higher ceiling.
Simple Trick to Create the Feeling of a Higher Ceiling

3. Use Striped Wallpaper or Striped Painted Walls

Just like we wear stripes to create height, stripes on the wall do the same thing. If you're a fan of stripes there are several ways to introduce them into a room; on one wall, on all walls (whoa), or above matching or contrasting colored wainscotting.


4.  Furniture Should Be Low Profile and Add a Cabinet or Bookcase to Ceiling Height

Avoid using bulky furniture in a room where your goal is to create a feeling of height. Lower profile furnishings are smaller and provide more space between the ceiling and furniture thus giving the room an added sense of height.

Budget permitting, add an open bookcase or cabinet (not too bulky) that goes from floor to ceiling. Again, the bookcase draws the eye upwards and the low profile furniture provides the illusion of contrasting height.


5. Use High Gloss Paint on the Ceiling

Really? Yep. This one takes guts. First of all, you'll need a clean, smooth, flawless ceiling to work with. High gloss paint will create a beautiful reflection of the room below, which will, in turn, make the ceiling seem higher. However, if your ceiling isn't prepared properly, beware, because high gloss paint will show every flaw!

Do a bit of research before tackling this. The brave decorator will be happy to know, if done right this technique is outstanding and can make a room feel double in height.


6. Use Pot Lights or Flush Mounted Ceiling Lights

Flush mounted lights or pot lights help a room's ceiling feel higher. Lower hanging lights consume part of the space and thus feed the eye information that the room is standard or low height.


7. Yes, We're Finally at the Obvious One, Mirrors

First, let's talk about mirrors on the wall. If you can mirror an entire wall, bonus. In the first home we owned (decades ago), we used floor-to-ceiling wall-to-wall mirrors around the entry of our front door. We wanted the foyer to feel roomier.

During that time, smoked mirrored glass was popular, as was beveled glass. We used the beveled glass mirrors on one wall in the dining room, and smoked mirrors on the entire wall surrounding the front door. It worked beautifully. Although decorating trends have changed, you can still use this mirroring technique. Choose one wall in the room, and mirror the entire wall.

If using floor-to-ceiling wall-to-wall mirrors isn't an option, try clumping together three or more framed mirrors and placing them higher up on the wall. In other words, bring the eye upwards to those mirrors and position them so they'll reflect light and other parts of the room. They don't have to go to the top of the ceiling. Simply start higher up and work your way downwards.

Finally, yes, you can mirror the ceiling. If there's money in the budget, the designs and styles to choose from are practically endless. You may need a professional to tackle this project!







Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Reviewing National Fruit and Veggies Month!

Did You Know That September Was National Fruit & Veggies Month?

Image adapted by Lou16 from a Pixabay image

I must admit it took me by surprise, but it's great that we have months where we can check out healthy eating habits.   March is National Nutrition Month and now we are encouraged to be good in September and make sure we eat all of our fruit and veg.

I'll be honest some days it's hard to get all of those serves of fruit and veg - do you find the same?   I do have a few sneaky ways in which I increase my vegetable intake though and I'm going to share them with you here.

  • Greens Balance
  • Spiralized Veggies
  • Hidden Veggies
  • Bulking Out Meals

Greens Balance - My (not so) Secret Weapon!


I love this product it's a powder that provides a serve of fruit and veg in one scoop and it's from 37 different fruit and veg which means you're eating a rainbow.

I usually take mine mixed in a drink, but I know some parents will put a scoop in things such as Bolognese to ensure that fussy children will get some fruit and veg.   I'm actually thinking of making some muffins or pancakes with the Greens Balance on St Patrick's Day next year!

Find out more about this super nutritional booster on my post - Reviewing Arbonne's Greens Balance.


Spiralized Veggies - Reducing Carbs & Adding Veg!


I first heard of spiralized zuchinni/courgette and thought it was an awesome idea and a great way to get my half a plate of vegetables when I just wanted to eat some Spaghetti Bolognese!  Once I brought my own spiralizer I discovered that you can use it on any number of vegetables.

My daughter is all grown up now, but I can imagine her wanting to eat her veggies (especially if she helped spiralize them) when they were in spirals as they just seem more fun!

If you're trying to cut back on eating pasta it is certainly a great compromise, check out my full review - Reviewing A Vegetable Spiralizer.


Hidden Veggies - Sneakily Getting the Veggie Count Up


There are lots of ways in which you can sneak vegetables into your diet from muffins to meatballs and so much more.   These are ways designed to get vegetables past picky eaters, but I love it as just ideas to increase my vegetable intake.

Check out some of these links:


Another way of disguising both fruit and vegetables is by making smoothies or even smoothie bowls.


Bulking Out Meals with Vegetables


Did you know that beans, lentils and chickpeas count towards your serves of vegetables a day?  I tell you that because I love using beans, lentils and vegetables to bulk out my meals.

When my daughter was young and we were a one income household I looked for ways to bulk out our meals, this budget inspired move also had healthy consequences as our vegetable intake increased!

Ideas I implemented included: 

  • Adding a tin of white beans to tomato soup and blending it up (this could count as a hidden veggie).
  • Adding green beans to lamb satay.
  • Adding chickpeas to a chicken curry dish my husband liked.
  • Adding frozen mixed vegetables to tuna pasta bake.
  • Adding spring onions and corn or onion and peas to potato bake.
  • Adding extra beans to chili (I have some recipes that call for black beans in which case I will also add white beans as they take on the flavor nicely and I have some recipes that don't ask for black beans, but I add them anyway!).
  • Adding zucchini to a number of different dishes (if it's in season it goes into just about anything from bakes to chili, shepherd's pie to stews).
  • Soups and stews can be a great way to add lots of vegetables to including any vegetables that are in the fridge (to avoid waste), any frozen veg or tinned veg.

There are countless ideas that can be used to get your vegetable intake up so let me know what your 'secret' way to increase your vegetable intake is.




Note: The author may receive a commission from purchases made using links found in this article.


FOLLOW US ON:


The Review This Contributors

Cynthia SylvestermouseCynthia SylvestermouseDawn Rae BDawn Rae BMary Beth - mbgphotoMary Beth - mbgphotoBrite-IdeasBrite-IdeasBev OwensBev OwensWednesday ElfWednesday ElfBarbRadBarbRadOlivia MorrisOlivia MorrisRenaissanceWoman2010Renaissance
Woman2010
Lou16Lou16The Savvy AgeThe Savvy AgeTreasures by BrendaTreasures by BrendaMargaret SchindelMargaret SchindelBuckHawkBuckHawkDecoratingforEventsDecorating
forEvents
Heather426Heather426Coletta TeskeColetta TeskeMissMerFaeryMissMerFaeryMickie_GMickie_G

 

Review This is Dedicated to the Memory of Our Beloved Friend and Fellow Contributor
We may be apart, but You Are Not Forgotten

Susan DeppnerSusan Deppner