Monday, June 29, 2009

Please don't limit the news -Wordbead 2

This week we experienced the passing of the Gloved Wonder, The King of Pop, the musician and performer extraordinaire, Michael Jackson. I am saddened by his death and extend my sincerest condolences to his family. I was very disappointed and dismayed with the conduct of the news media. The Wordbead words for the week is hyperlinked below.

For the entire week the TV press coverage and stories was Immoderate. They lost sight of all of the other issues and news that impact our world and our neighborhoods. For about 4 days it seems like every station I landed on, and I kept surfing, had an extensive report on the death of Michael Jackson and not much else. No doubt this is huge! Michael Jackson was such a power house; such influence, such a big part of our lives, our world for so many years. Perhaps for too few years, after all he was only fifty years old, taken away from us in his prime. I loved him so, and I miss him.

He was like family; irregardless of how you felt about him or his shenanigans, his music and entertainment value had touched us all and we appreciate that. We may not like his metamorphoses or the fact that he didn't seem to be always on the same planet with the rest of us, I think that was overlooked. We turned a blind eye to all those things when he stepped on stage. Unfortunately, I think this, his genius and his ability to rake in money, is also the reason he didn't get the support and 'care' he needed to deal with his physical and mental ailments. They were all obvious to anyone looking but maybe, leave well enough alone was the modus for his 'handlers' and his entourage.

I don't care how much money you have or how powerful you are, somewhere along the line one of your allies, advocates, someone in your inner circle need to step up, bite the bullet, stand the ground and say, hey dude we need to work on.... There is enough resources there, figure out how to do it, just do it for the love of the kid.

Any how, we always had to give him his props when we see his musical prowess. Michael Jackson; just the thought of his name brings on a warm fuzzy, Snug feeling of comfort and pleasure. There is always a strong emotional response to his music or a particular song that hold some important or sentimental value for you. His music and extraordinary performances and music videos mollify our disdain for those of his actions we found unacceptable, if even for a brief while.

Like astrology, we interpret a song and intertwine it with our personal issue, experience or affairs and it becomes our theme song, our favorite song or most intense song, the one that defines the relationship, the mood, the thriller!

So, finally it seems that the media has shifted the world back into focus like the moon's revolution around the earth and the sun is now on us again. We can see and hear reports about the fall-out over the election in Iran and the human suffering, the economy and unemployment, politicians behaving like kindergartners or forgetting their marital vows, the Obama financial bail out, insurance reform plans, the one who Madoff with the savings,etc., and we can put it all into perspective. For one thing we are here suffering through the troubles of life and have to carry on remembering that, as my grandma used to say, death is a part of life. We have to embrace it and keep it moving.

This is a big loss, for sure. It rocked our world and has left an eternal void. But while we sit in awe, sadness and pain, we have to keep our attention on the world we live in, the real life line and life stories and how to help each other find our way. We will put everything into perspective. Give us some credit we can do the sifting or editing or censoring with our remote and cash but allow us the option. You are not allowed to indulge in your own concern or need to keep up with ratings. What about your audience. Yeah we are inquiring minds we want to know, we want to know everything.

As I said before, death is a part of life and it hurts. It cuts like a knife; he/she's out of our lives. No matter who it is, death is big, it hurts. But when it happens again in this magnitude, let us live the life that is normal - a smorgasbord of stuff, like always, because we'd rather stay in the moment than try to catch up or start over. Let us keep everything into perspective.

I pray that every one will have their full life, what ever their God has ordained. I pray it is long, productive, peaceful, healthy and full of love. Don't short change us when the eventual happens. Try to find a happy medium with the hot news of the moment tempered - balanced- with the everyday, essential life stories. It's not about ratings because folks surf around anyway. It should be about meeting the needs of your viewers and providing the service you are in the business of; giving information, all the information, timely and completely.
Rest in Peace.

Friday, June 26, 2009

He is out of my life; Gone but never forgotten!

"He's Out Of My Life"

He's Out Of My Life he's Out Of My Life
And I Don't Know Whether To Laugh Or Cry
I Don't Know Whether To Live Or Die
And It Cuts Like A Knife
He's Out Of My Life

It's Out Of My Hands
It's Out Of My Hands
To Think For so few Years he Was Here
And I Took Him For Granted I Was So Cavalier
Now The Way That It Stands
He's Out Of My Hands

So I've Learned That Love's Not Possession
And I've Learned That Love Won't Wait
Now I've Learned That Love Needs Expression
But I Learned Too Late

He's Out Of My Life he's Out Of My Life
Damned Indecision And Cursed Pride
Kept My Love For Him Locked Deep Inside
And It Cuts Like A Knife
He's Out Of My Life
--Michael Jackson, 1979 Off the Wall album - "She's Out of my Life"

Thank you for the memories. Thank you for the love. Thank you ! Rest in peace!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

My Wordbead Meme trial

As I continue my quest to learn about meme so that I can make it a regular feature here, I came across Wordbead on the daily meme blog. It was listed as an option for memes along with others. I chose to try this one from the list because I am a crafts person. I spent many hours and dollars on beads and beads projects with my kids, so naturally, I was smitten by the prospect.

I just collected the word list for this week, Junne 21, and will atempt to "string them together" to form some beautiful, hopefully, pieces. The five words are underlined and linked to the dictionary. Please tell me what you think. Better yet join me!

The huge oak tree sits ominously behind the shed of the old house at the end of the lane.
You could sit quiet there for hours enjoying the breeze and the comfort of nature and no one would know and disturb you. Sitting under this oak tree, you will drift way into thoughts of wonders and estacy, staying preoccupied with thoughts and ambigious feelings for hours unend. These are the thoughts you would keep private or only share with your closest confidant because it may be seen as obscene . Afterall, these thoughts could leads to actions that can be responsible for the creation of complex organisms. We are all born as a result of quiet preoccupation of thoughts and actions that seems obscene but can be the beginning of a beautiful life.
What do you think? am I on the right track? Please comment!

Sunday, June 21, 2009

A Fathers Day Tribute to you

If the new American father feels bewildered and even defeated,
let him take comfort from the fact that whatever he does in any fathering situation
has a fifty percent chance of being right. - Bill Cosby
As I thought about a tribute for father’s day, I thought I would post a famous quote framed in a nice border, something pointed and simple. I searched the web for a quote, because I was lazy to try to remember one from my father or grandfather, or even one from my husband. As I scrolled through quotes I came upon this one by Bill Cosby and thought, this is it! As I read through, it brought to mind an experience we had which makes this quote real. I couldn’t just put this one in the frame and post it as I thought because I have a story.

Several years ago I had to work on a day that the kids were off from school and my husband was off from work. I decided not to take the day off but to leave the three of them home to take care of each other. They got along famously. They didn’t have anything planned so I went off without getting the kids dressed or combed their hair etc. I figured he could manage their daily upkeep until I got back home.

Around mid-day that day, my husband called me to say he had to go out on some business and he would bring the girls to me at the job. The girls were excited at the prospect of coming to see me but I was mortified. It was ok for the kids to come to me but I was worried about how he would do their hair. Getting them washed and dressed for the trip was no concern at all. It was the hair. He has never done their hair and they had long thick curly hair. They were way too young at the time, single digit ages, to be able to really help either. I composed my self and kept working waiting for them to arrive and prepared to accept some funny hair do.

My husband called again to say he will be leaving soon but he was not sure how to do their hair. I gasped, just leave it as is and bring me the hair stuff bag, or pull it back with the clips. He said not to worry he will do the best he could, so I accepted. When they arrived, they were very happy to see me and quite happy that daddy did their hair. I tool a look and said nice job! He looked at me and we both smiled. It wasn’t my hair combing or maybe a female’s standard but he did the best he could and you know what, it wasn’t half bad. So, yeah, it was half right. The part was crooked, the sections uneven, the twists undefined and shaggy but the clips were on in matching colors.
I am very grateful that my kids have such a devoted and caring father. He worships the ground they walk on and they love him.

Happy fathers day to all. Give it your best and it will be at least half right. We will take your best all of the time. And the kids, they will love you for it. Thanks Dr. Crosby, well said.

My First 5 Questions Post

I've been on a quest to understand and participate in memes for awhile now and still haven't ventured into it. I am still looking to get a regular fun item to add to the oh hum drum blog. As I did my blog visits yesterday, I read one of my faves at some day I'll get there. She had a post "5 More Questions." This caught my eyes so I checked it out. She was responding to 5 questions she picked up from Extranjera . She offered to pass along 5 questions to anyone who asked. I am seeing this as a sort of meme and figured I'd give it a shot. Guess what? I asked AND as promised, she promptly sent them to me. I will therefore give it a shot! Thanks guys! Feel free to play along!

1. Describe your perfect day.
A bright sunny day in the back yard with plenty to eat and drink, lots of plants and flowers in bloom. Nothing to do, no one waiting for me to pick them up, drop them off or get involved with them and their needs. Me and myself and nature.

2. What made you start a blog?
I like to write and have had this desire to write, causally for a long time. This desire has been getting stronger and stronger recently but I don't quite have the time or resources. I hope some day I'll get there. I am also always commenting on things and making complaints in letters to the editor etc. My kids have this thing about me writing, so they limit their issues or caution each other, be careful or don't say that, "she's gonna write a letter!" I think that the blog could be a vehicle or means to both ends for now.

3. Who in your family knows about your blog, if no one, why?
Everyone! My computer is in an area of the room so that we can see what is going on. When I am at the computer, especially late in the night, it's the standard retort of the gang as to why I am still up, - she is writing her blog! My kids are really cute.

4. If you could break the law for one full day without consequences, what would you do?
This is a tough one. I am one of those people who always say and try very hard to stay on the "straight and narrow" so even though its a 'free pass' for a day, I'd be looking around and behind me a lot and feeling weird. That being said, I would probably erase all of the parking tickets that exists and park any place I found without regard.

5. What is your biggest regret?
Some unfinished business that is no longer a priority for me. I came home from my European escapade prematurely. I buckled and ran home before I completed my junket.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

This crazy Spring Weather

What’s going on with the weather?
I can’t recall seeing so much rain in a single week or month in these parts. All day rain, consecutive days like a tropical climate' rainy season and we’re not having summer temperatures. Granted it’s not like the monsoon, maybe monsoon like, or the torrential rains of some places, but just rain, rain, light rain, heavy rain, intermittent rain, major downpour of rain, every day rain, day in and day out in some combination of flow.

What’s going on this year? Is El Niño/La-Nina getting major, the green house effect is in effect, changing climate, global warming needs a cooling or just some aberration in the climate in this part of the world. Is the weather this spring a type of cyclical recurrence, not necessarily from our environmental destruction or excesses or over indulgence? Is this something that occurs ever ‘X’ years or million of years? Is there any such data or report for us to check into? I am getting water logged.

I was watching ABC News Nightline Program last evening and they had a segment on the weather. They reported that the country is seeing tornados, hot and cold temperatures, mudslides; a weather pattern that has 'flipped' from the usual to this. For example the reporter said that the mid-west has seen 70 tornadoes since the spring with winds so fierce they've tossed trains off the track, hailstorms from Colorado to New Jersey and mudslides in Utah. Sam Champion, the reporter continued, Seattle Washington had no rain in 28 days of the season while New York City had 18 days of rain, 150% of the normal rain fall with torrential down pours that interrupted ball games. DC had doubled the amount of rainfall.

Don’t get me wrong I like the rain. I like to play in the rain, I like to stay in on a rainy day and eat soup, watch movies, play games or go out and splash in the puddles but the latent effect of so much rain can be a doozey. I like singing in the rain, the movie, and singing in the rain with the kids. Going out to work or about the business of living and getting wet and wet and wet again is no fun. Not to mention the illnesses that may befall us from all this exposure, they can be ugly. Hey what gives?

I know the plants and the environment need rain, we all need the rain but not so much, not all at once. We will have excesses in the rivers, the dams, the soil, watch out, floods! grass and bugs; flees, ticks, mosquitoes, flies, bees, you got the picture, right?! That’s another problem. Flowers are one of my favorite things and they need the water to bloom etc but they too could have a problem from too much rain at the same time.

So, what do we want?

Just the right amount of rain, balance!

When do we want it?


Hey, Mother Nature are you listening?!

Husbands beware, wives stock up on the bengay, mineral ice and other treatments; oh those aching backs! Get plenty of Off, and other repellants, Benedryl and other allergy stuff and tissues, aaahchoo! I think we are in for a prickly ride this summer.

Hmm...! for those of you on the coasts, gear up for the hurricane season, it might be a looloo!
Be merciful Mother Nature. Give us a break.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

A legacy for all

I wasn’t feeling well again this weekend so I spent time just laying around watching TV and doing a few chores. I watched some programs on cable TV from Animal Kingdom to a re-broadcast of a commemoration of Queen Elizabeth’s birthday with all of the pomp and circumstance surrounding it. I watched some of it and continued to flip channels. Apparently Britain is gearing up for this year’s celebration. Ironically the Queens birthday is in April but the public celebration is held in June to get the benefit of the weather for the parades and shows. There was also a re-play of an investigation into the accident that caused Princess Diana’s death. I couldn’t bear to watch that again.

On Sunday as I flipped around the stations again, I stopped at the Meet the Press show and they had a tribute to Tim Russer at the one year anniversary of his death. I watched him many a Sunday and came to like him very much. They played some highlights of his shows and his touching graduation addresses. As I watched these shows and many others this weekend, I thought about legacy. These are messages and images that provide guidance, instruction, information and inspiration to everyone. The monarchy and all of its splendor and history is a curiosity, our insatiable need to snoop or learn about celebrity and its dangers and the kindness of one and its far reaching effects. Lasting images, affection appreciation and inspiration -Legacy.

I have a few friends and relatives commemorating birthdays and celebrating graduations in the next few days or weeks so this is a special time for appreciation, reflection and adjustment; you know, planning for the future and changing the things you need for prosperity, good health or just to show growth and maturity; turning over a new leaf. This is also a time of beginnings for graduates moving up the grades, careers or life goals and expectations. It's for and about the future.

This is exciting times and stressful times for graduates. It is also intimidating and scary for those aging up as well. Graduates are at a crossroad; what to do, where to do it or where to go, what makes sense in the scheme of things in terms of goals and reality. I guess both groups are/can be in a similiar boat. Nothing is clear cut, nothing is certain so it’s a matter of following the ‘best option’ or going on faith. These times can be frightening for even the most successful student and the most thoughtful ones. We caregivers and elders and 'rocks' or 'anchors' have to stay strong and offer guidance and reassurances with sound planning and steadfast determination to help them find their way and achieve. For those aging up, I say they too need the same reassurances and solid plans.

Every graduation speech in some way portrays these sentiments but it is hard for the celebrant to focus and retain what is being said because of the awesomeness of the event. For graduates and birthday celebrants alike, inspiration is what is sought to light the way. Give guidance, ideas, trust, faith, belief, the power behind the dream to make it a reality.

I would like to offer Tim’s graduation speech at Catholic University as it speaks to what we all need to be reminded of and it reassures us that we are one people and our strength and our greatest achievement is in helping each other along the way. Congratulations, many happy returns and all the best to everyone. May you all find the peace, joy, grace, love and happiness to move forward and achieve the dreams you hold fervent and dear. May our legacy be an inspiration and a help to others along the way.
Whatever your ideology, reach down and see if there isn’t someone you can’t pull up a rung or two— someone old, someone sick, someone lonely, someone uneducated, someone defenseless. Give them a hand. Give them a chance. Give them a start, give them protection. Give them their dignity. That’s what it means to be a Catholic University graduate, a lawyer in 1997. For the good of all of us, and most important to me, my 11-year-old son, Luke, please build a future we can be proud of. You can do it. --Tim Russert.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Wow, I belong to GiST

I am a very happy and proud member of Grace in Small Things. I got in today. I must say that I have been following Thoughts from along the broken road for some time now and she is a member of GiST. I always liked the widget and her entries. Now I will be sharing my thoughts and the widget on my Lx3 blog. So here is my first post.

1. Giving thanks for being accepted to the Grace in Small Things network. yay!
2.Walking in the rain to do my usual weekend chores without an umbrella and in flip flops. A sudden down pour came, a monsoon, lasting for about ten minutes and then return to a drizzle. I love walking in the rain, not so much in flip flops.
3.Returning phone calls to out of town friends just touching base. Always a great feeling.
4.Figuring out the schedule for the week - what to do, who has to go where, when, what to wear, etc.
5. Being able to watch the basketball finals with some friends even though I don't have a favorite team in the playoff this time around.

I will need some help and tips to get the sync just right with the badge and the posts. All are welcome!

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Take time to reflect on life as you grow

While I was blog hopping, visiting my faves and checking out some others, I came across a post on a blog that I liked very much. The entry was reflective of the end of the day and offered as things to think about. I thought it was a nice idea to keep the blog current and a meaningful exercise. That entry reminded me of meme. I see them on a few blogs that I visit, the numbered lines etc, but I still don’t get what they are or how to construct one. They are a good way to keep the blog current and doesn't seem to take a lot of time to do; I think.

Last night as I went through my emails, I read the one below sent to me by my dear friend. I actually spoke to her earlier in the evening but got to my e-mail several hours later to find this forward. We talked about her upcoming birthday earlier so this was quite a special read. Although we didn’t talk about me, my birthday is in a few weeks too, but weeks down the road. As I went through each numbered line, I could see some of my thoughts and actions, as I have gone through the years, reflected. So seeing this as a timely piece of mail, with the upcoming commemorations, I thought I would share it with you too. I am sure some of you have b'days coming up too.

Thanks to Ms. Brett for writing it, as noted below. I hope this will add to your evaluation and life’ reflections as you think about how you’ve passed your time. It can also a guide as we go through the years. So here it is:

Written by Regina Brett, of The Plain Dealer, Cleveland, Ohio in 2006.

"To celebrate growing older, I once wrote the 45 lessons life taught me. It
is the most-requested column I've ever written. My odometer rolled over to
50 this week, so here’s an update:"

1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.
2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.
3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.
4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch.
5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.
8. It's OK to get angry with God. He can take it.
9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.
10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.
12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.
13. Don't compare your life to others’. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.
15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.
16. Life is too short for long pity parties. Get busy living, or get busy dying
17. You can get through anything if you stay put in today.
18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.
19. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.
20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.
21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, and wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.
23. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.
24. The most important sex organ is the brain.
25. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.
26. Frame every so-called disaster with these words "In five years, will this matter?”
27. Always choose life.
28. Forgive everyone everything.
29. What other people think of you is none of your business.
30. Time heals almost everything. Give time, time.
31. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
32. Your job won’t take care of you when you are sick.Your friends will. Stay intouch.
33. Believe in miracles.
34. God loves you because of who God is,not because of anything you did or didn't do.
35. What ever doesn’t kill you really does make you stronger
36. Growing old beats the alternative - dying young.
37. Your children get only one childhood. Make it memorable.
38. Read the Psalms. They cover every human emotion.
39. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.
40. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back.
41. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now
42. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful
43. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
44. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
45. The best is yet to come.
46. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
47. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind
48. If you don’t ask, you don’t get.
49. Yield
50. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift.

Thanks Ms. Brett. I appreciate these lessons.

For those of you who have a knack for the memes please share one with me and the key to create them.
I hope your life lessons show that you Live, Love, Laugh! Life is a gift, enjoy.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

My Highway Billboard Journal

We had a road trip of sorts this weekend; of sorts because it is a regular trip for us, going to visit grandma. Its fun, we look forward to it every time but sometime the traffic makes it drudgery.

As we drove along I-95 I had a flash back to my childhood Sunday road trips to visit family. We never had this distance to go but none-the-less we had a long ride. My Father always took us on a long drive into the country every Sunday afternoon. Here’s the routine.
We leave home early Sunday and go off to church for Sunday School and then the morning service.
We mull around church for awhile after the service then go home for brunch. Brunch is usually a big meal, like dinner, just earlier. We often have friends join us for brunch so that was fun too.
Then after awhile we all piled into the car and go off on the Sunday cruise.

One of the attractions and asmusement for us, kids, was reading the billboards.
Another was spotting the various colors and types of flowers and trees along the road and many other oddities.

As the thought crossed my mind I reached for my camera, I remembered to put it in my bag this time, to take pictures of billboards and other signs that I liked or though of note. I didn’t find a lot of funny signs or interesting ones but some of the old ones were up. Noticeably missing were the cigarette ads.

Getting the pictures was tricky because of the road speed and my camers shutter speed. I couldn’t figure out how to change the camera shutter speed to make it faster. I know it can be done, I just couldn’t figure it out in a hurry. I took a lot of pictures but would delete some as I went along because they were not what I wanted. I got much less than I had hoped to get and share. But.....!

I don’t recall what the speed limit was back then but I am sure it’s not what it is now or even what people think it is, giving the speed at which they fly along the road. So as we kept up with the traffic it was hard to get the signs I wanted or at least get good shots. The traffic was heavy as usual so we had to keep pace with the leaders so the followers wouldn't be in our backs. As I previewed the pictures from the upload, I eliminated several more of the shots because they weren’t really good. I do have a few to share however. So, without further adieu here are the useable billboard shots that I could capture.

Entertainment sign - Up coming concert

Movies - already in theaters.
You might have to play and win before you can afford the movies and or the concert theses days!
Hey, Can you hear me now?!
This seemed like a sign yard; two signs back to back - At least one is tasty!
Oh yeah, where can we get some fresh fruits along the way?!
For the environment' sake, go mass transit!
They make it easy for you to save on gas too!

My All time favorite signs, next to my exit sign off the high way. (The off highway sign to the area is better)
See you along the Highway!!!!!

Thursday, June 4, 2009

IHOP, a reasonably priced family meal

For a real tasty, filling and reasonably priced meal for the family, on one of those evenings that you want to get together for a social, but your purse is not feeling very sociable, visit your neighborhood IHOP. It's a win win for all!

We went to the local IHOP this evening and was pleasantly surprised with the menu, the service, and the cost of our order. They have a very good menu that fit all tastes, interest and pocket book. Its a full menu and all items are available all day long. You have your breakfast foods, lunch and dinner foods even some favorites, and eat anytime foods and desserts. A nice selection of beverages too. The menu caters to the children, seniors, dieters and all other peculiarities for food.

We used to call it the International House of Pancakes, now the trendy, IHOP. They even celebrate a national pancake day in February. IHOP touts itself as a family style restaurant with reasonably priced high quality foods. It made its name, to me anyway, selling breakfast specialities; various styles of eggs, pancakes and sausages with at least 4 types of pancake syrups, among other items. Their restaurants all have a similar set up and is very comfortable and nice looking. IHOP is set up in a diner style with booths, and single tables. They can rearrange those tables to suit the size of your party. The location we visited in the City was pleasant and comfortable and quite busy at 9pm.
The prices are really, really good and the waiter will explain how to manage your cost. Our waiter explained that we could order a 'small' for less or reduce the amount of 'meats' on the order to cut costs. You could make other changes or enhancements to modify your cost. Everyone in my party found something they liked or craved on the menu. The waiter was polite, very versed in the menu offering and his service was brisk.

We had a good time. The food and service was very good and we loved the price. We had an interesting array of foods from the menu; from soup and salad, to burgers, steak and chicken. It was all very good and we were all very satisfied. The Strawberry Festival, the seasonal offering right now, is g-r-ea-t!

Thanks IHOP for responding to the economic situation in a way that makes it possible for families to still get out and have a good meal.

IHOP is in all 50 states so find your local resturant and take a trip!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Mango the superfood

I had the most juicy, sweet, delicious mango today. I can’t wait to tell you all about it.
A colleague at the job was kind enough to share her mangoes with me after I complimented her on her choice of fruit. Fruits are big these days around the Plaza. The variety and the amount of fruits is great. As the weather gets warmer and we spend more time outdoors, vendors come around with all types of fruits. We buy fruits for breakfast, lunch or anytime and in any amount at very reasonable prices. Warm weather is a time when we look for “super foods” that are available and very tasty, filling, have little calories and will last us through the long active days we will experience from now until about November. So back to this mango!

I got a very yellow, really ripe but firm mango. I was told that this mango was the type that I had to eat at home. At home where I can “spread out” and eat in comfort because the juices will be gushing out and I will need to wash hands and face. I took her advice and decided to wait until after work so I wouldn’t walk around the office looking a mess. I kept the mango on my desk, in sight and drooled over it until it was time to leave for home. My delicious mango could have been from this group. It was just like these!

I was so anxious to eat this thing that I took it to the ladies room as I was getting ready to leave work to wash it so it was ready to eat. After I washed it I thought I would take a bite on the way home so I prepared for that. I washed the mango and wrapped it in paper towels. I took some extra paper towels, some dry and a few sheets moist to clean up, just in case I got messy with this superfood.

I got in the car and put the bag on the seat next to me. As I started the car and prepared to move it, I decided to take a bite of the mango. Boy, oh boy! It was everything she said and more than I thought it would be. Talk about delicious! It was sweet, juicy and full of that wonderful mango flavor. It was awesome! What a treat! Next thing I knew I was down to the pit of the mango and totally exhilarated. Wow what a mango! Then I wished that I had waited until I got home like my colleague told me. I really need to relax now; you know, spread out!

Mango you say? Oh yeah, mango! So here is the scoop. Mangoes are fruits that grow on trees (as opposed to vines or in the ground) in the tropics. They are a various types and tastes. They originated in the Indian subcontinent but is widely exported around the world. Mangoes are very nutritious and good for you. Mangoes are considered super foods because of their health value. Mangoes are high in probiotic dietary fibers, vitamin C, antioxidants and omega 3 and 6 polyunsaturated fatty acids. They are generally sweet, but varying degree of sweetness, and have a unique taste and texture, depending on the type of mango according to wikipedia.

Some are more sweet than others, some are firm, some soft, some thick and pulpy, some stringy, some small, some big. They start out green then ripen to a golden almost pumpkin yellow or various shades of yellow and green and combination of both colors. You may see mangoes ready to eat that are partially green and part yellow or red, or orange or dark burgundy and green. (see above pic from Recipeazaar) This fruit is very delicious and is used as flavoring, coloring and fragrance. The skin is used for its antioxidant value and even the tree leaves are used for decorations.

Mangoes can be very filling and may be used in many dishes or eaten just as they are, fresh off the tree, green or ripe. Many people eat them green (not ripe) and varying degrees of ripeness. In the Plaza by the job, and along the main thoroughfare, vendors sell peeled and sliced mangoes and offer them coated with hot sauce and or salt, especially the un-ripened ones, or plain wedges in a container or on a stick.

Some of my favorite mango recipe are mango smoothie, mango jam, mango ice cream, mango chutney, fruit salad and garnish for many dishes. Most of all I like them straight up whole right off of the tree, room temperasture or cold. I'll take it!.

For more complete information check out and go out and get some. They’re great!
Check out recipeazaar for some great fun and cool mango recipes. They have some of my favorites and they are good for you. Come back to share your thoughts and recipe or story with us about mango, the superfood. I know you will like them too!

Check out the USDA rating

Mango, raw
Nutritional value per 100 g (3.5 oz)
Energy 70 kcal 270 kJ
Carbohydrates 17.00 g
- Sugars 14.8 g
- Dietary fiber 1.8 g
Fat 0.27 g
Protein .51 g
Vitamin A equiv. 38 μg 4%
- β-carotene 445 μg 4%
Thiamine (Vit. B1) 0.058 mg 4%
Riboflavin (Vit. B2) 0.057 mg 4%
Niacin (Vit. B3) 0.584 mg 4%
Pantothenic acid (B5) 0.160 mg 3%
Vitamin B6 0.134 mg 10%
Folate (Vit. B9) 14 μg 4%
Vitamin C 27.7 mg 46%
Calcium 10 mg 1%
Iron 0.13 mg 1%
Magnesium 9 mg 2%
Phosphorus 11 mg 2%
Potassium 156 mg 3%
Zinc 0.04 mg 0%

Percentages are relative to US
recommendations for adults.
Source: USDA Nutrient database