Archive for April, 2011

organized closet

Organized Closet

Spring time is here and many of us think about spring cleaning.  Now is a good time to sort, throw out, recycle or give away items that you don’t want or need anymore.

Overwhelmed at the thought of tackling this task?   If so, start small, gain momentum and keep moving forward.

An easy place to start is your closet.  I always want to switch from fall/winter clothes to my spring/summer wardrobe.  Look over your winter clothes and ask yourself these questions.  If you can’t decide, give it away– someone can use it.

  • Do I love it?
  • Am I keeping it because I got it on sale?
  • Is the color right/wrong for me?
  • How do I feel when I wear this item?
  • Do I think/hope I’ll lose weight so I can wear it?

Ask a friend or family member to give you an honest opinion about your clothes.  If you don’t feel good wearing it, remove this clutter from your life.  Your closet will have more room and it will be easier to locate and organize your clothes.

Another tip:  if you buy a new blouse, top, jacket- great!  Just remember to pick one or two items out of your closet that look tired or worn out & move them out.  Recycle, sell or give them away.  You’ll feel good about it and your closet will be less crowded.

Paper, paper, paper – what do I do with all of the paper?

Organized Files
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   Use File folders to Organize Papers

Sort, file, and recycle.  If you have a stack of recipes, look through them, decide if you must keep them and organize them in a notebook, file folder or recipe book.

Give magazines to a local shelter or recycle them.  If you want to keep an article, cut it out, file it & recycle the magazine.

File your receipts in an accordian file by store, utilities or company name.  When  you get a receipt, file it or throw it out.  Don’t let stacks pile up on your desk.

Sort your mail daily.  Put your bills in one location- perhaps a pretty file folder.  Recycle the junk mail being careful to shred or remove your name and address.  If you receive catalogs that you no longer have an interest in, give the company a call and request that they stop sending the paper catalogs.  This will reduce your clutter and help the environment.


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With nicer weather we spent more time outside being active.  Perhaps, you are on a sports team, and as the temperatures get hotter you need something to drink.  Water is the best drink, but there are times we may need something else or think we do.

The American Insitute for Cancer Research (AICR) checked with sports dietitians about sport drinks and what they would recommend.  Their recommendations were:

1.      If you are doing low to moderate intensive activity such as walking, that lasts less than 60 minutes, water is a best choice to drink before, during, and after exercise.

2.      If you are participating in moderate to high intensity activity lasting longer than 60 minutes, sport drinks are a good option, especially when you need to replace carbohydrates and electrolytes.

3.      Following physical activity you should always drink enough fluid to replace fluid you lost during exercise (water is an excellent choice).  After long, intense activity, you may need to replace fluid and sodium losses with watery foods that contain some salt such as soup or vegetable juice.  You can replace fluid and potassium losses by eating fruits and vegetables.

Try making your own sports drink by using ½ cup of 100% juice and adding 1 cup of water.  You will have a drink with less calories, more potassium, and less sodium than a sports drink.  You will also not have any added sugar which is in sports drinks.

Reference:  “Replenish and Refresh:  Top Thirst Quenchers for Summer Workouts”  American Institute for Cancer Research eNews from at http://aicr.org/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=19317&news_iv_ctrl=2303

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Farmer’s Markets will soon be ready for business. While there will be many plants for sale there will be also be fresh spring fruits and vegetables. Fresh edibles include rhubarb, peas, spinach, radishes, onions and asparagus will be the first fresh fruits and vegetables available.
Some guideline’s for buying and using fresh produce:
-Buy fresh looking produce that are crisp and have vivid colors
-If you are going to preserve the fruit or vegetable for later use, ask if the variety is good for canning or freezing.
-Fresh fruits and vegetables have high nutrient value so enjoy them soon after they are harvested. The fresher the product the higher the nutrient value so preserve foods quickly after purchasing or harvesting.
-Keep fruits and vegetables safely after purchasing, and be certain to place all fruits and vegetables in the refrigerator.
-Wash vegetables and fruits when ready to consume or preserve. Keep foods cool and not preserving until ready for use will conserve more of the nutrients and extend the shelf life of the product
Author: Doris Herringshaw, Extension Educator, Family & Consumer Sciences, Ohio State University Extension, Wood County.

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Did you know that skin cancer is the leading cause of new cases of cancer in the United States?  According to the American Cancer Society, more than 1 million Americans are diagnosed with skin cancer each year, totaling more than cancers of the lung, breast, colon, prostate, uterus, ovaries, and pancreas combined.

Consider these facts:

  • More than 20 people die each day from skin cancer.
  • One in 4 people under 40 will develop skin cancer.
  • Melanoma kills more young women than any other form of cancer.
  • Skin cancer is the #1 cancer in men over age 50.
  • One in 5 Americans and one in 3 Caucasians will develop skin cancer in course of a lifetime. Exposure to tanning beds before age 35 increases melanoma risk by 70%.

To ensure you’re safe while enjoying being outdoors in the summer, follow these sun-safe tips:

  • Apply sunscreen daily, at least a half hour before going outside in the sun.
  • Wear a minimum of 30 SPF, full spectrum UVA/UVB sunscreen.
  • Reapply sunscreen every two hours, or more often if swimming or sweating.
  • Apply enough to cover your body parts which will be exposed to the sun; approximately 2 tablespoons for the average size adult.
  • Wear a hat with at least a three-inch brim.
  • Protect your eyes with 100% UV sunglasses.
  • Try to avoid the sun during peak hours:  11:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

Source: American Cancer Society

Author:  Jennifer Even, Extension Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences/EFNEP, Ohio State University Extension.

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There are many reasons for being at a healthy weight.  You want to look good and have the energy to participate in everyday activities.  But more importantly is to be in good health.  By maintaining a healthy weight you can avoid chronic disease such as hypertension and Type 2 diabetes.

A good way to judge your body weight is to use the Body Mass Index (BMI).  BMI is a height to weight ratio which gives you a rating from Underweight to Obese.  You can use the online calculator at:  http://www.nhlbisupport.com/bim/  to determine where you fall on the rating scale.

Balance is the key to a healthy diet.  It is as simple as making sure you eat the same amount of food as your body burns.

                CALORIES IN = CALORIES OUT

For example if you like to garden, 35 minutes of gardening would burn 165 calories.  That’s just 15 more calories than one 12 ounce regular soda.

MyPyramid has many tools to help you in balancing your food choices with your daily physical activity.  Keeping a food diary and exercise log can also be good tools and an eye opener if you have never used these before.  There are many online applications available for use.  I find it helpful to keep these logs once in awhile to get back on track if I have slipped in my eating habits or neglected my exercise routine.  Using a tracking tool can help you learn to cut calories or increase exercise or a combination of both.

By choosing daily healthy reasonable changes you can maintain a healthy weight.

Author:  Linnette Goard, Extension Educator, Family and Consumer Sciences, Ohio State University Extension.

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