Tuesday, November 26, 2013
With the winter months coming many of us get the ice, snow and rain to deal with when traveling. Along with these come a greater chance for road accidents. Hopefully none of us will be involved in one but just in case I thought I would share some words of wisdom from my Nationwide Agent Tim.
Remember these important driver “don’ts.” When you aren’t able to avoid an accident, the next best thing is to make sure you handle the situation the right way. So if you find yourself in the middle of a fender bender or something potentially more serious, here are six practices you should definitely avoid:
Leaving the involved vehicles on the road. With traffic attempting to move around the accident scene, your first priority is to pull your vehicle off to the side of the road at a safe distance from traffic. Then turn on your hazard lights before exiting your car, and approach the other driver in a non-threatening manner. “If one or more vehicles are disabled, don’t try to move them,” says Bill Windsor, associate vice president of consumer safety for Nationwide. “If the hazard lights are operating, turn them on. Use flares too if you have them. Then stay a very safe distance away from the traffic.”
Losing your cool. Even if the other driver was clearly at fault, do not make accusations or otherwise invite confrontation. “Instead, ask if the other person is OK to help defuse any tension,” Windsor says. “Take deep breaths if you feel anger building.”
Not contacting the police immediately. You must contact police, no matter how minor the situation. “Average citizens should not act as judges with regard to the severity of an incident,” Windsor says. “That’s for police to determine. In addition, you need an official police report to document what exactly happened.”
Not contacting Nationwide (your own insurance company). Your insurance agent should always be called after you’ve exchanged the following information with the other driver: name, address, phone number, insurance company name/policy number, license plate number/state, name of the vehicle owner and car year/make/model/color. The Nationwide app makes it easy (see below). Also, record details about the incident, such as the location, the time of the crash and a summary of how it happened. Take pictures of the damage done to your vehicle.
Accepting cash to “keep it quiet.” Some drivers—if they’re at fault and face possible legal and/or insurance issues because of their record—might offer what looks like a sufficient amount of cash to “fix the problem without contacting police or insurance companies.” This is a bad idea. “Even if it doesn’t look like it will cost that much to fix your vehicle,” Windsor says, “you have no way of knowing how expensive it may actually get. There’s also damage that you can’t see. Contacting police and Nationwide is absolutely essential.”
Being unprepared. Never get in a car without a fully-charged cellphone, a first-aid kit and emergency contact information.
Sunday, November 24, 2013
Friday, November 22, 2013
- Canned foods with large amounts of sodium or fat.
- Pasta meals made with refined white flour instead of whole grains.
- Packaged high-calorie snack foods such as chips and candies.
- Frozen fish sticks and frozen dinners that are high in sodium.
- Packaged cakes and cookies.
- Boxed meal mixes that are high in fat and sodium.
- Sugary breakfast cereals.
- Processed meats.
Thursday, November 21, 2013
New cookbooks have been added and some prices have been dropped at Books, Books & More. Drop by and check them out.
Tuesday, November 19, 2013
I'm not a chocolate lover but do enjoy Hot Cocoa if flavored with Hazelnuts or Almond... go figure. In the cold months I like to have a hot cup before going to bed. Always wondered why I was up and down at night due to a full bladder. I found my answer.
Monday, November 18, 2013
As I age I find that different foods have started causing a few problems with my digestive system, so I did some research. This will be posted in parts so I won't overwhelm everyone with so much information. I'm calling these posts "I Didn't Know."
Sunday, November 17, 2013
Just in time for the holidays! Gourmet's Holidays and Celebrations - originally priced $25.00 like new - now priced $3.00 + shipping.
Friday, November 15, 2013
Thursday, November 14, 2013
Wednesday, November 13, 2013
Tuesday, November 12, 2013
Monday, November 11, 2013
This was actually an education for me as I wasn't aware of a lot of this information.
Friday, November 8, 2013
I found this in a vintage Betty Crocker Cookbook and decided to share.
These are some of the most popular dried varieties of pasta:
Acini De Pepe (or Dot Shape): Peppercorn-size pieces of cut spaghetti.
Capellini (or Angel Hair): The thinnest of the long spaghettis.
Conchigle: Medium to small shapes with or without groves
Couscous: The tiniest form of pasta made from granular semolina.
Egg Noodles: Flat or curly, short pasta strips usually made with eggs or egg yolks.
Elbow Macaroni: Short, curved, tubular-shaped pasta.
Farfalle (or Bow-Ties): Shaped like bow-ties. Miniature bow-ties are known as tripolini.
Fettuccine: Long, flat noodles, usually 1/4 inch wide.
Fusilli: Long or short spring-shaped pasta.
Japanese Curly Noodles: Wavy, thin, long noodles in thin "bricks."
Lasagna: Flat noodle about 2" wide with either ruffled or straight edges.
Linguine: Long, flat, thin noodle usually 1/8" wide.
Manicotti (or Cannelloni): Large 4" hollow pasta tubes that are usually stuffed and baked.
Novelty Shapes: Seasonal or other pasta shapes, such as trees, rabbits, hearts, etc. sometimes flavored
Penne: Narrow, short, diagonal-cut pasta about 1 1/4" long, smooth or with groves.
Ramen: Quick-cooking, deep-fried noodles used dry or cooked.
Ravioli: Filled pillow-shaped pasta usually stuffed with cheese or spinach.
Rice Noodles: Translucent, thin strands made from rice flour and water.
Rigatoni: Short-cut, wide tubular pasta about 1" long with groves.
Rosamarina (or Orzo): Resembles rice but is slightly larger and longer.
Rotini: Short-cut corkscrew-shaped pasta. Wider version is called rotelle.
Spaghetti: Long, thin, solid strands.
Tortellini: Filled, slightly irregularly shaped little rings.
Wagon Wheels: Small, round pasta resembling a wheel with spokes.
Ziti: Short-cut 2" tubular noodle with smooth surface.
You can refrigerate or freeze leftover pasta for a future meal. Store in tightly sealed containers or plastic bags in the refrigerator up to five days, or freeze up to two months. To reheat pasta, choose one of these three quick and easy methods:
* Place pasta in rapidly boiling water for up to 2 minutes. Drain and serve immediately.
* Place pasta in colander and pour boiling water over it until heated through. Drain and serve immediately.
* Place pasta in microwavable dish or container. Cover and microwave on High for 1-3 minutes per 2 cups or until heated through. Serve immediately.
Thursday, November 7, 2013
Most of us have a favorite recipe for slaw that we simply love. I love mine so much that whenever I eat slaw at someone's home, at a restaurant, or any other place, I compare it to mine. It is simple... cabbage, green onion, carrots now and then but just a little, equal amounts of sugar and vinegar and just enough mayo to coat. Well, I decided to add something. I had some leftover cauliflower from the soup I made a few days ago so I decided to chop some of it up and try it in my slaw. I ended up with equal amounts of cabbage and cauliflower so I could make sure the taste of both came through. This was delicious! So if you like cauliflower, give this one a try.
Wednesday, November 6, 2013
What do you do with all those little Styrofoam 'peanuts' that come packed into cartons so often? Besides their obvious shipping re-use, why not use them as drainage the next time you're planting house greenery or those herbs you decided to grow inside this winter. These 'peanuts' are extremely lightweight, yet tough, so they'll hold up under the dirt and provide drainage. It also makes the pot a lot lighter than rocks used for drainage.
Monday, November 4, 2013
I had a friend/neighbor ask me about a box of cereal that had a sell by date of October 30 and it was not October 31. She wanted to know if she should pitch it or not. This is what I found through my research.
Did you ever throw out a dozen eggs just because the carton said they were a week past the expiration date? Have you tossed a box of uneaten onion soup mix for the same reason? Chucked an outdated can of corn?
Then, like almost 90 percent of Americans, you have thrown away your food unnecessarily—and your money, too. According to a new study from the Natural Resources Defense Council and Harvard Law School’s Food Law and Policy Clinic, most expiration dates are meaningless and confusing for consumers. Worst of all, they cause us to get rid of food that would be perfectly acceptable to eat—and which would not cause us any harm.
“There is a lot of confusion around expiration dates, and we think they are a significant contributor to the needless wasting of food,” says Dana Gunders, staff scientist in the food and agricultural program of the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC.) She estimates that most households throw out between $275 and $400 worth of food every year. And it’s not just a problem in the United States.
“A study in the U.K. found that about 20 percent of food thrown out in households is because of this confusion or misinterpretation of the expiration date,” she says. The report urges the food industry and the government to create a clearer, user-friendlier food-dating system to help consumers. Their recommendations include eliminating expiration dates altogether.
In the meantime, how can you safeguard your family’s health while at the same time avoid throwing out perfectly good food? Here are some things to consider:
1. Contamination versus spoilage: There is a difference between the two. Yes, some foods will go bad if they are left uneaten for too long. But the likelihood is very low that an egg that is kept in the refrigerator for five weeks past its expiration date will be contaminated. If the food is well past the date stamped on it, Gunders says, before throwing it away, at least open it, sniff it, and taste it. If all of those things seem right, then go ahead and eat it. Exceptions: meat, poultry, and prepackaged perishable foods like sandwiches and salads. These are health risks.
But know that most foods won’t make you sick because they were on the shelf too long. “When you hear about outbreaks of E.Coli or salmonella, that’s usually because of a pathogen that got on the food early in production. That’s a different situation than milk that goes through a natural process of decay. Your milk will smell or taste bad long before it will make you sick,” Gunders adds.
2. Temperature matters more than dates: After shopping, take your food home promptly and put it away immediately. “The temperature of food is more relevant than its age,” Gunders says. “If you leave something in a hot car for a few hours, it allows the growth of bacteria and then it becomes unsafe to eat.”
Know the definitions of labels:
- “Sell by”: When you see that date stamped on your food, it’s intended to help the store know when to remove it from the shelves, so that the manufacturer can measure how quickly their products leave the shelves. “When the product says ‘sell by,’ I want to say you can almost ignore that. It’s meant for the grocery store,” Gunders says. “It absolutely does not mean that the product is unsafe and nine out of 10 people are throwing product away based on that date.” The Harvard/NRDC report recommends that the date somehow be hidden from consumers because it doesn’t help us to eat fresher food.
- “Use by” and “Best by”: These dates are put on products by their manufacturers but surprisingly, they are not warnings about when the food will go “bad;” rather, they are a suggestion of when the food is at its peak quality. But Gunders says, “According to our experts, 80 percent of the dates you see on products are guesses” about when the food will taste best. “It’s just a suggestion for the product’s peak quality, but it doesn’t mean it isn’t good after that date. There is no legal guidance involved in coming up with this date,” she says. “If everyone understood that these dates are just guesses, everyone would be taking them with a much larger grain of salt,” she added.