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Old Fashioned Homemaking Weekly Digest


									Old Fashioned Homemaking Weekly
     September 24, 2012 – September 28, 2012

               Graphic by Alice Smith


Quick Lunchbox Ideas
Posted on September 24, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(NAPSI)—Parents looking for a sweet choice for school lunches should consider pears.

Grown in Oregon and Washington, USA Pears are an excellent source of fiber and a good source
of vitamin C. They also make a smart snack.

To ripen fresh pears, leave them at room temperature. When a pear gives to gentle pressure near
the stem, it’s ripe, juicy and ready to enjoy.

For a quick midday or after-school treat, try these fresh ideas:

• Slide pear slices into a peanut butter and jelly sandwich or quesadilla

• Roll up pear slices, turkey, cheese and lettuce in a whole wheat tortilla

• Stir chopped pears into yogurt and top with granola

• Sprinkle diced fresh pears into a green or fruit salad

• Try this mixed fruit salsa with graham cracker “dippers”:

Student’s Pear Salsa

Combine 1 of each: finely chopped, cored USA Pear, apple, orange and 2 finely chopped kiwi
fruit in medium bowl. Gently toss fruit with 2 tablespoons honey and 1 teaspoon lemon juice.
Scoop up bites of salsa using cinnamon graham crackers. Or pack a serving of salsa in an airtight
container and place graham crackers in a separate baggie for a delicious lunch addition. Makes 4

For more brown-bag ideas and recipes, visit

Six Easy Ways to Improve Your Kitchen, Bathroom and
Posted on September 24, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(ARA) – Good lighting is not something most people think much about until they don’t have it.
Living in a well-lit room is a much more pleasurable experience than trying to cook, read,
entertain or do just about anything in a dark, shadowy space.

The American Lighting Association offers these tips for improving the lighting in your kitchen,
bathroom and bedroom:

      Add to your task lighting. Many bathrooms and kitchens have plenty of overhead light,
       but are often lacking when it comes to task lighting, says David Martin, designer with
       lighting manufacturer Hubbardton Forge. “At the kitchen sink, for example, you can
       eliminate shadows by including two sources of light.” The result is a workstation with
       easier-to-see spaces that alleviate eyestrain.

      Include mood-enhancing lights and dimmers. “Places such as bathrooms and bedrooms –
       once mostly functional – now serve as an extension of our living spaces,” says Todd
       Phillips, owner and senior designer with Quoizel Lighting. The lights in those rooms
       should be both hardworking and mood enhancing. For example, inexpensive, easy-to-
       install cove lights in the kitchen can provide soft illumination after mealtime and cleanup.
       Additional lights placed at a bathroom vanity and aimed out toward the face can help
       brighten grooming tasks and offer awakening morning light. A bonus: Those controls can
       help accommodate varying levels of natural daylight, too.

      Increase the size of your bedside task light. One of the bigger mistakes Phillips sees in
       bedrooms is the size of bedside lamps – they’re either too small or not adjustable. “The
       lamp needs to provide light where you need it, and if it’s too small it can’t do that,” says
       Phillips. Go for a larger size with increased lumen capacity.

      Install track lighting for flexibility. Stationary overhead lights are fine when you need to
       flood a space with light, but too often kitchens, bathrooms and bedrooms lack flexible
       sources of light. A good solution is track lighting. “You can direct one or two of the
       lights on the track and point them to a wall to add accent light for artwork, and use other
       lights on the track to create different focal points,” Phillips says.

      Add a light fixture for drama. A side benefit of beautiful, light-providing chandeliers and
       pendants is that they provide focal points. “New light sources give homeowners some
       great options,” says Phillips. “You can drop in a chandelier over a bathtub to create
       drama and get mood and ambience too.”

As a bonus, those fixtures help provide the finishing touch for different colors and accents.
“People sometimes put quite a lot of money and effort into their rooms and lighting can help to
show them to their best effect,” says Martin.

      Add a ceiling fan with a light source. With the flip of a switch, a ceiling fan with a light
       kit can improve a room’s livability with both comfort and light. It is just one more
       example of how light works wonders in the home. “Having more lighting options creates
       a better lifestyle and it enriches our lives in terms of the time we spend in our homes,”
       says Phillips.

To see the latest lighting products and to talk to an expert about how to improve lighting in your
kitchen, bathroom, and bedroom, visit your local ALA-member retail showroom or go online to

Photo courtesy of Tech Lighting

Quick Ways to Perk Up Your Day
Posted on September 24, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(Family Features) Let’s face it, between work deadlines, shuttling the kids back and forth to
school and activities, and household chores, sometimes those to-do lists can be overwhelming.
Here are a few quick tips to keep you moving throughout the day.

Take Time for a Snack

A good assortment of snacks can help keep you going between meals. Keep a stash of easy, on-
the-go items on hand so you don’t need to hit the vending machine or fast food drive through.
Some ideas include whole fruits like bananas, apples, oranges or blueberries; yogurt; whole grain
crackers and your favorite peanut butter; veggie sticks and hummus.

Enjoy a Cup of Coffee

A short coffee break is a great way to help break up the day. Quick and convenient coffees, such
as Folgers(r) Instant Coffee Crystals, in a newly redesigned ergonomic jar with an easy to open
flip-top lid, make it even easier for coffee lovers to enjoy the rich, flavorful taste and aroma of
Folgers Coffee no matter what the occasion. If you have a little more time during your coffee
break, you can also enjoy an Iced Mocha Latte or Triple Berry Café Mocha – these recipes let
you make a cool treat in just minutes.

Take a Breather

Whether you work at an office or are busy at home, plan a 5- or 10-minute break a few times a
day. Put down what you’re doing and stretch, or take a stroll around the house or office. You’ll
be able to clear your head and reprioritize – which will make it easier for you to conquer the next
thing on your list.

To learn more about creating instant coffee to your liking, visit

Iced Mocha Latte
Yield: 5 cups

1/2 cup cold water
2 tablespoons Folgers Classic Roast(r) Instant Coffee Crystals
1 14-ounce can Eagle Brand(r) Sweetened Condensed Milk, chilled
2 tablespoons Smucker’s(r) Sundae Syrup(tm) Chocolate Flavored Syrup, chilled
Ice cubes

COMBINE water, coffee crystals, sweetened condensed milk, and chocolate flavored syrup in
blender container until crystals are dissolved. Process until smooth.

POUR over ice in tall glasses. Serve immediately.

Triple Berry Café Mocha
Yield: 1 serving

1 1-ounce package hot chocolate mix
1 tablespoon Folgers Classic Roast Instant Coffee Crystals
1 cup boiling water
2 tablespoons Smucker’s Triple Berry Syrup
Whipped cream

COMBINE hot chocolate mix and instant coffee in large mug. Carefully pour boiling water into
mug and stir until dissolved. Stir in fruit syrup.

GARNISH with whipped cream, if desired. Serve immediately.

(c)/(r) The Folger Coffee Company. Smucker’s, Sundae Syrup and Eagle Brand are trademarks
of The J.M. Smucker Company.

Source: Folgers Coffee

Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Nonstick Cookware
Posted on September 25, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking
(Family Features) In the last several years, kitchen activity has increased as families bypass the
drive-through to cook at home more often. According to a recent survey from DuPont, maker of
the most popular nonstick coating for cookware, more than two-thirds of home cooks choose
nonstick pots and pans because they help families cook convenient and healthy meals that are
easy to clean up.

Getting a Handle on Nonstick Cookware

“You don’t need a lot of equipment to cook a simple and healthy meal at home. With a chef
knife and a large, high quality, nonstick skillet you can cook a lot of really great recipes,” said
Janice Newell Bissex, M.S., R.D., author of the new family cookbook “No Whine with Dinner”
and co-founder of

As families try out new recipes and pick fresh ingredients for their home-cooked meals, it’s a
good idea to understand what cookware to look for when it’s time to buy something new.

Types of Nonstick Coatings
Not all nonstick cookware coatings are equal. According to the Cookware Manufacturers
Association (CMA), most quality nonstick cookware has a PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene)
finish. PTFE, developed by DuPont 70 years ago, is used as a nonstick coating that is both
durable and high-temperature resistant. Brands such as DuPont(tm) Teflon(r) nonstick coatings
have been developed with a variety of coatings which are reinforced to resist scratching and can
come in up to three-coat finishes – which means greater durability and a longer life for your pan.

Consumers also may be familiar with pans that advertise as ceramic finishes and claim they are
natural or organic. Both ceramic and PTFE-based coatings start from minerals that are used to
create a synthetic coating. PTFE coatings comply with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration
(FDA) regulations for their intended use. In lab tests, which simulated cooking in a home
kitchen, traditional nonstick coatings lasted up to seven times longer than ceramic finishes.

Using Nonstick Cookware
While there are few rules to using nonstick coated
pots and pans, just like anything else in your
kitchen, you can achieve the best results when
you use proven techniques.

When trying out new recipes, or simply revisiting
an old favorite, it’s best to use medium or low
heat. Then add food and lower the heat to cook at
an even temperature.

Because food releases so easily when you use
cookware with nonstick coatings, you don’t need
to use oil or fat when you cook unless you want
to. And with recent improvements you also can
use metal utensils on many high-quality nonstick-
coated pots and pans without worry of scratching.

DuPont research also shows that cleaning up after cooking remains a top concern in the kitchen.
With nonstick pans, cleanup is easy. Simply wash with hot, soapy water after each use; a sponge
or dishcloth is usually all it takes to get the surface thoroughly clean.

Many nonstick pans also are dishwasher-safe. Check the manufacturer’s guidelines before using
a dishwasher. Cookware also should be stored carefully to prevent unnecessary wear and tear.

Buying a New Pan
Buying something new for your kitchen – even a pot or pan – is exciting, and since you’ll likely
be using it for a long time, you want to make the right choice. Use these tips when shopping for
nonstick cookware:

      Think about what piece or pieces you will really use most. Start there
       and build. You can buy a single pot or pan or a full set, depending on
       your needs.
      Check out all the new types of pans available, as manufacturers are
       constantly innovating. For example, there are new nonstick pans for

       grilling, stainless steel pans with nonstick coatings, as well as new
       colors to add flair to your kitchen.
      Next, make sure you’re getting high quality nonstick and not a cheap
       imitation. Look for a pan that carries the Teflon(r) brand logo, so you
       know you’ll get the durability you expect.
      Finally, if you use cookware in the oven as well as on the stove, choose a
       handle that can take the heat, such as metal, and check the
       manufacturer’s guidelines for maximum temperatures.

Find more tips and recipes at

Browning Food
Can you really brown food in a nonstick pan? Yes.

      You don’t need high heat to brown in a nonstick pan – use medium heat.
       You’ll get the same results; it will just take a little longer.
      Augment the browning of your main ingredient simply by adding a
       sweetener, such as wine, juice, vinegar, syrup or honey.
(couple cooking) – Photo courtesy of Getty Images


The Future of the Family Road Trip
Posted on September 25, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(ARA) – For families, time on the road is a part of life, whether you’re going for a family
vacation or traveling to visit grandparents for the holidays. While time in the car together is
nothing new, the way families are spending their time in the car and the tools that help get them
safely to their destinations are rapidly evolving.

Nowadays, kids are less likely to pass the time playing 20 questions than they are to watch their
favorite movie on an iPad. And while you might have once reached for the atlas to find your
way, GPS systems or mobile phones have long since replaced your paper maps.

Each day new car and mobile technologies are improving the way families travel. New safety
features, tools to help with directions, finding amenities, and increased entertainment options are
available for passengers. But what if all of these helpful tools were integrated into one easy-to-
use system within the family car?

Comprehensive in-vehicle systems designed to provide drivers with useful information may soon
be the norm. Technology experts at Intel are currently working with automakers on in-vehicle
infotainment (IVI) systems that have the potential to make the family road trip safer and more
entertaining for everyone involved.

It is estimated that automobiles will be among the top three fastest growing Internet connected
devices for Internet-based content by 2014, according to technology research form Gartner. This
should come as no surprise given consumer demand for access to their digital lives anytime,
anywhere, since the average American driver spends 18 hours a week behind the wheel. That’s
over two months every year spent in the car.

So how exactly could this type of technology help traveling families? Here are a few examples of
the types of travel-friendly features that experts at Intel are exploring with leaders in the
automotive industry:

      Cars could have a driver’s side display that would be able to offer alerts about upcoming
       traffic signs and relay images about blind spots from cameras placed in a car. Alerts
       about upcoming stop signs or exits would be especially beneficial when driving in
       unfamiliar territory.

      What could be worse than a flat tire while on vacation? Emergency sensors connected to
       the car’s infotainment system could alert you immediately when a tire loses pressure,
       giving you time to safely pull over or make it to the next exit for help. The intelligent
       infotainment system could also provide directions to the nearest repair shop.

      Like to travel with other families? New connected cars will offer you the ability to
       connect with other cars in your caravan through GPS tracking. No need to describe your
       location over the phone or two-way radio.

      Have you made a habit of streaming your children’s favorite shows through a
       subscription service like Netflix? Soon, these types of entertainment options could be
       standard in the car’s in-vehicle infotainment system, and music and video files could be
       kept in one place. You could even stream different movies on each of the backseat
       screens to accommodate everyone in the family.

To see more of what your family road trips might look like in the future, visit

Why a Little Fall Outdoor Maintenance Can Go a Long
Posted on September 25, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(ARA) – After spending the summer enjoying the outdoors, it can be a little bittersweet to get the
deck and yard ready for the cooler days ahead. The good news is getting outdoor areas ready for
winter doesn’t have to be a time-consuming process.

A few simple steps can minimize extra work when warmer weather rolls around again. For each
area of the yard, there are a few procedures that can save you big headaches in the long run.

Start With the Deck

The many homeowners that put a lot of time and money into building a deck know the
importance of preserving that investment. A wood deck should be stained annually, however,
many homeowners are turning to low-maintenance composite decking and railings, as composite
options by manufacturers like TimberTech offer high-end aesthetics with low-maintenance

But that doesn’t mean that composite decks are maintenance-free. TimberTech provides a 25-
year warranty on all of its products, and with some simple annual maintenance, they can be kept
looking great for years to come. The company’s decking experts recommend the following tips
for composite deck care and cleaning:

      Clear all debris to prohibit mold and mildew growth.

      When using a cleaner, be sure to use one that’s compatible with your decking material
       and follow the instructions.

      Using a pressure washer is a great way to get a deep clean, but it’s best not to exceed a
       pressure greater than 1,500 psi.

Lawn Care Tips

In addition to raking to keep the yard clear of leaves, dethatching can prevent a buildup of above-
ground roots that can be a detriment to soil health. Aerating in the fall can also help lawns
recover from a summer of heavy use, providing much needed oxygen for the turf’s roots.

After particularly dry summers, it doesn’t hurt to water trees with a soaker hose or root irrigator
so they have some water to help them survive the winter. Fall is also the time to clear out both
garden and flower beds, as you’ll thank yourself in the spring for doing the work before winter
set in. Be sure to get your fall-planting flower bulbs in before the ground freezes as well.

Around the House

Clearing all gutters of debris should be an annual fall task, as all the fallen leaves can easily jam
up downspouts, which can damage gutters or cause ice dams in colder climates. It’s also a good
idea to clear the areas around the foundation of the house, as pests like to make their homes there
when the weather gets cold.

By spending a temperate autumn day outside preparing your outdoor spaces for winter, you’ll
eliminate extra work for yourself in the spring. For more deck care tips, visit

Stir up Some Party Fun
Posted on September 26, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking
(Family Features) No matter what the reason for the party, you can stir up some fun with easy-to-
make appetizers that are sure to please the whole crowd.

Quick and Easy BBQ Sauce
Apple Butter Mustard Dip
Kickin’ Horseradish Sandwich Spread
Caramel Apple Dip

These four recipes are a breeze to make and all share one simple secret ingredient – Musselman’s
Apple Butter. Here are some delicious ideas for turning these dips and sauces into great party

Quick and Easy BBQ Sauce: Brush on chicken wings or shrimp during the last few minutes of
grilling. It is simple to make BBQ pulled pork, as well as the sauce for a crockpot of meatballs or
bacon-wrapped smoked sausages.

Apple Butter Mustard Dip: Delicious with just hard or soft pretzels. Set out a plate of cheese
cubes or mini egg rolls for dipping, and you have easy snacking.

Kickin’ Horseradish Sandwich Spread: This tastes great with roast beef, chicken, or pork – try
mini sandwich sliders or pinwheel wraps. Another great idea is to use the spread as a dip for
chicken tenders, sweet potato fries or even veggie chips.

Caramel Apple Dip: Set a dish of this warm dip on a pretty tray and surround it with freshly
sliced apples or pears, and simple gingersnap cookies. For a family fun dessert, dip
marshmallows and then roll them in chopped nuts.

For more ways to stir up some fun at your party, visit

Quick and Easy BBQ Sauce


      1 cup Musselman’s Apple Butter
      1 cup chili sauce


   1. Mix ingredients.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

Apple Butter Mustard Dip


      1 cup Musselman’s Apple Butter
      1/2 cup Dijon mustard


   1. Mix ingredients.

Makes 6 to 8 servings

Kickin’ Horseradish Sandwich Spread


      1 cup Musselman’s Apple Butter
      Creamy horseradish sauce depending on spice level (1/4 cup for light,
       1/2 cup for mild, 1 cup for hot)


   1. Mix apple butter with desired amount of horseradish.

Makes 6 to 8 servingCaramel Apple Dip


      1 cup Musselman’s Apple Butter
      1/2 cup caramel sauce


   1. Mix ingredients.

Makes 6 to 8 servings


Infant to Senior – How Identity Theft is Affecting Every
Posted on September 26, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(ARA) – An infant’s Social Security number is used in a credit card application. A 10-year-old’s
identification information is used to apply for a car loan. Grandpa gets an email claiming that he
won the lottery and needs to provide information to collect the winnings. Today, identity theft
can occur to anyone, not just middle-aged adults. Savvy thieves are targeting every generation,
from child to adult to senior. It’s important to stay alert so every member of your family is better

Child ID theft

Think you don’t have to worry about identity theft for your kids? The fact is more than 19,000
cases of child identity theft were reported in 2011, up from about 6,000 in 2003, according to the
Federal Trade Commission. How does this occur to children, who typically don’t even have a
bank account? Every day many parents send their children to school and child care with personal
information in their backpacks. Backpacks are typically hung out of sight for hours or
information can end up in desks for days, providing ample opportunity for identity thieves.

How can you tell if your child’s ID has been stolen? If your child begins to receive suspicious
mail, like pre-approved credit cards and other financial offers normally sent to adults, his identity
might have been compromised. Also, a child should never have a credit history until they are
older and actually have financial accounts. If you suspect that identity thieves may have targeted
your child, complete a secure Child Identity Theft Inquiry Form at TransUnion
will investigate the existence of a potential credit file in your child’s name, and after the search is
complete, respond to you at the email address you provide. If a file is located in your child’s
name, additional information will be asked for in order to proceed with steps to protect your
child from any impact associated with this fraudulent activity.

The most important thing you can do to avoid child identity theft is to be mindful of the personal
information your children are carrying. Make sure their information is kept in a safe spot and not
just tossed in the bottom of a school bag. Even better, seal any documents that contain your
child’s personal information in an envelope addressed to the school. Also, explain to your kids
that they shouldn’t share personal information with strangers in-person or online.

Adult ID theft

Unfortunately, as many as 9 million Americans have their identities stolen each year, according
to the FTC. Innovative thieves can get your information in many ways – from online hacking to
dumpster diving.

To avoid ID theft, always shred personal documents, only use secure sites when shopping online,
and give out your driver license number and other identification only when absolutely necessary.
It’s also wise to pick up your mail from your box every day and consider depositing outbound
mail in a mailbox at the post office.

Awareness is your best weapon against identity thieves, so subscribing to a monitoring service
like TransUnion Total gives you peace of mind. The service helps you minimize your exposure
to identity theft by proactively monitoring the sites where posting personal information may
occur. The service also includes monitoring for changes in your credit, new addresses registered
with the postal service, court records and non-credit loans not reported to the credit bureaus. If
ID theft does happen, you won’t be alone. TransUnion will help you restore your good name and
also help you cancel stolen items from your wallet and obtain new ones.

Senior ID theft

Seniors are frequently targeted by online phishing scams. If you’re a senior, or you are an adult
child who cares for an elderly parent, it’s important to always guard personal information

Seniors are often targeted on the phone with offers of free samples or lottery winnings – the
caller simply needs some personal information to transfer the money or send the item. Another
popular scheme is someone posing as a relative who is stuck and needs money in order to get
home. Every senior should be highly skeptical when asked for bank accounts or Social Security
numbers on the phone or Internet.

Another issue – that is an easy fix – is many seniors carry their personal information with them at
all times – including their Social Security card, Medicare card, check book, etc. It’s wise to only
carry what is needed when leaving the house.

Identity theft affects all generations. By knowing the different considerations for the various ages
of your family’s members, you’ll help keep everyone safe today and in the future.

Loving Holiday Leftovers
Posted on September 26, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking
(Family Features) Once the feast is over, many home cooks are left with a plethora of leftovers
and a challenge: how to make the most of what remains. While it’s hard to live up to that original
holiday meal, there’s a lot more that you can do with leftover ham rather than just reheating.

Potato-Crusted Ham Quiche
Ham and Cranberry Monte Cristo
Good Luck Soup
Holiday Spiral Sliced Ham with Pecan Praline Glaze

This year, give leftovers new life with a week’s worth of versatile meals that can be enjoyed
throughout the day. Start with a fully-cooked, naturally hickory smoked Smithfield Spiral Sliced
Ham with a pecan praline glaze, and follow these simple steps to turn it into a potato-crusted
ham quiche for brunch, a Monte Cristo sandwich for lunch, and a savory soup for dinner. You’ll
leave friends and family asking for leftovers more often.

For more leftover recipes you’ll love, visit and

Potato-Crusted Ham Quiche


      2 cups of potatoes, raw and shredded
      1/4 cup onion, minced
      1/2 cup red bell pepper, finely diced
      1 tablespoon chives, finely chopped
      3 eggs, divided
      Salt and pepper to taste
      3/4 cup sharp cheddar cheese, grated
      3/4 cup smoked Gouda cheese, grated
      1 cup Smithfield Spiral Ham, fully cooked and chopped
      1 cup evaporated milk
      1/2 teaspoon paprika
      1/2 teaspoon salt (optional)
      1/4 teaspoon pepper


   1. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
   2. Spray quiche pan with non-stick cooking spray.
   3. In medium bowl mix potatoes, onion, pepper, chives, 1 beaten egg and
      salt and pepper to taste.

   4. Press potato mixture evenly into crust shape up the side and on the
      bottom of the pan and spray again. Bake for 15 minutes or until lightly
      browned on edges.
   5. In a mixing bowl, combine cheeses. Remove crust from oven and layer
      the following: ham first, and then cheese mixture on top. In a bowl, beat
      together evaporated milk, remaining eggs, paprika, salt and pepper.
      Pour mixture on top of cheese and return to oven.
   6. Bake about 25 to 30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into middle of
      pie comes out clean. Allow to cool at least five minutes.
   7. Serving Suggestions: Serve alongside sliced fresh fruit or a small fresh
      garden salad.

Serves 8

Cook Time:
45 minutes

Ham and Cranberry Monte Cristo


      3 eggs
      1/3 cup milk
      1/2 teaspoon vanilla
      1 teaspoon sugar
      Pinch nutmeg
      1/2 cup whole cranberry sauce
      8 slices bread (potato bread, challah, egg bread or any other sweet soft
      8 slices Smithfield Spiral Ham
      2 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
      1 cup baby arugula leaves
      4 tablespoons butter
      Confectioners’ sugar for garnish


   1. In shallow casserole dish, whisk eggs together with milk, vanilla, sugar
      and nutmeg.
   2. Spread equal amounts of cranberry sauce on one side of four slices of
   3. Top cranberry sauce with two slices of ham, 1/2 cup cheese and 1/4 cup
      arugula. Top each stacked bread slice with the remaining four slices of
      bread. Gently press together.
   4. In large skillet, melt butter over medium/low heat. Dip each sandwich
      into milk mixture. Turn and dip the other side.
   5. Place in the hot pan and cook until each sandwich is golden brown and
      the cheese has melted. Remove from pan and drain on paper towels.
   6. Dust with confectioners’ sugar and serve warm.

Serves 4

Cook Time:
10 minutes

Good Luck Soup


      1 tablespoon olive oil
      2 medium yellow onions, chopped
      2 cloves garlic
      1 tablespoon ham base
      5 dashes hot sauce
      1 1/2 teaspoons dried thyme
      1 teaspoon dried oregano
      1 pound black eyed peas, rinsed and soaked over night
      64 ounces vegetable stock (or chicken stock)
      1 cup water
      2 cups Smithfield Spiral Ham roughly chopped
      1/2 pound collards, cut into thin ribbons
      Pepper to taste


   1. In large stock pot add olive oil. Stir in onions, garlic, ham base, hot
      sauce, thyme and oregano. Sauté until onions are translucent.
   2. Add drained black eyed peas, vegetable stock, water and chopped ham.
      Simmer until peas are tender, approximately 40 to 50 minutes.

   3. Add collards and simmer an additional 20 to 30 minutes. Pepper to
      taste. Serve hot.

Serves 8

Cook Time:
80 minutes

Holiday Spiral Sliced Ham with Pecan Praline Glaze


      1 Smithfield Spiral Sliced Ham with Pecan Praline Glaze


   1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
   2. Remove packaging; reserve liquid. Place ham cut-side down on large
      sheet of foil in roasting pan, pour reserved liquid over ham and wrap
      completely with foil.
   3. Warm ham in oven for 10 to 12 minutes per pound. Do not overheat.
   4. After removing ham from oven, let ham sit for 5 minutes before glazing.
   5. Heat glaze packet for 15 seconds in microwave. Glaze is hot, so be
      careful when opening packet. Holding packet with a towel or oven mitt,
      cut corner off packet and pour glaze into a bowl. Stir well and spoon

       over ham. Let glazed ham sit for 5 minutes before serving to allow glaze
       to melt over ham.

Serves 14

Cook Time:
10 to 12 minutes per pound


Family Favorite Meals Get a Makeover
Posted on September 27, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking
(Family Features) There has been a makeover taking place in the past 40 years on a food that 94
percent of Americans eat at least monthly, according to the Consumer Beef Index. You may be
surprised to learn of the many changes that have resulted in leaner beef found at your local
grocery store.

How beef is getting leaner to meet expectations

Asian Beef and Vegetable Stir-Fry

It starts on the farm

Changes in the way farmers and ranchers raise cattle, in addition to increased fat trimming, has
resulted in the widespread availability of leaner beef. In fact, more than two-thirds of the beef in
the meat case – including popular cuts like top sirloin steak, tenderloin, T-bone steak and 90
percent lean or leaner ground beef – meet the government guidelines for lean, according to Fresh
Look Marketing Group.

Leaner than ever

Due to a variety of factors, including recommendations from the Dietary Guidelines for
Americans, people now prefer leaner cuts of beef, and as a result, the total and saturated fat
content from trimmed steak has steadily declined. In fact, data collected by the U.S. Department
of Agriculture shows that total fat content for a trimmed top sirloin steak has declined 34 percent
from 1963 to 2010 and saturated fat content has declined 17 percent between 1990 and 2010.

We all know that beef tastes great, but calorie-for-calorie, it is also one of the most naturally
nutrient-rich foods. On average, a 3-ounce serving of lean beef is about 150 calories and
provides 10 essential nutrients like protein, zinc, iron and B vitamins.

Heart-healthy meals

Even more great news is that new research suggests that beef can be good for heart health.
Research published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition shows that even eating lean
beef daily – as part of a heart-healthy diet and lifestyle – can lower LDL (bad) cholesterol by up
to 10 percent – as much as any other recommended heart-healthy diet. And adding lean beef to
your diet is simple when you prepare quick and flavorful meals. Try this Asian Beef and
Vegetable Stir-Fry, which takes only 30 minutes to prepare and boasts the flavors of top sirloin
steak, bell peppers, garlic, sesame-ginger sauce and crushed red pepper. It’s sure to be a family

To learn more about lean beef’s nutrition and heart health benefits, and to find more flavorful
recipes, visit

Asian Beef and Vegetable Stir-Fry


      1 1/4 pounds boneless beef top sirloin steak, cut 1-inch thick, divided
      4 cups assorted fresh vegetables, such as sugar snap peas, broccoli
       florets, bell pepper strips and shredded carrot
      1 clove garlic, minced, divided
      1/2 cup prepared stir-fry sauce, preferably sesame-ginger flavor
      1/8 to 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
      3 cups hot cooked rice
      2 tablespoons unsalted dry-roasted peanuts (optional)


   1. Cut beef steak lengthwise in half, then crosswise into 1/4-inch thick
   2. Combine vegetables and 3 tablespoons water in large nonstick skillet.
      Cover; cook over medium-high heat 4 minutes, or until crisp-tender.
      Remove and drain.
   3. Heat same pan over medium-high heat until hot. Add half of beef and
      half of garlic; stir-fry 1 to 2 minutes, or until outside surface of beef is no
      longer pink. Remove. Repeat with remaining beef and garlic.
   4. Return all beef and vegetables to pan. Add stir-fry sauce and red pepper;
      heat through. Spoon over rice. Sprinkle with peanuts, if desired.

Makes 4 to 6 servings

Cook Time:
30 minutes

The Beef Checkoff

For hundreds of recipes for quick and easy inexpensive home cooked meals, check out the
Dining On A Dime Cookbook.

Warm Up the Colder Months with Skin That’s Irresistible to
Posted on September 27, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking
(ARA) – In today’s fast-paced, technology-driven world, we text more than we hug; we touch
our phones more than we touch each other. However, despite the need to be “plugged in,” when
surveyed by professionals at Arizona State University, 75 percent of men and women agreed
they would like more touch in their lives. As the cooler months approach, take the opportunity to
achieve healthy skin that’s irresistible to touch … perfect for those nights you need to warm up
next to a loved one.

“Winterproof” your skin with these few tips and you’ll be ready to touch and be touched all fall
and winter long.

Exfoliate and Moisturize

Get rid of old, dull-looking skin cells and reveal a new radiant glow by exfoliating skin from
head to toe. “For healthy, glowing skin, look for a gentle exfoliating cleanser like NIVEA’s
Touch of Renewal,” recommends beauty blogger Rosy Cordero.
 Awarded the most beauty awards in the body scrub category in 2012, this NIVEA cleanser uses
both exfoliating and moisturizing components to leave you with soft, beautiful-looking skin. For
more information, check out

Bundle Up

Overexposure to harsh winds and cold temperatures can be rough on skin. Before heading out
into the elements apply a glycerin-rich moisturizer and cover skin with hats, gloves, etc. so that
skin is not exposed. This will help avoid reversing the effects of well-moisturized skin, which
can lead to dryness and chapping that won’t look or feel good.

A Healthy Skin Diet

Your diet can directly affect your skin. In addition to keeping skin well moisturized and guarded
from harsh elements, try to increase the amount of fruits and vegetables you eat – specifically
ones that contain antioxidants and vitamins that help promote healthy skin. Drinking six to eight
glasses of water also helps improve your skin tone by giving it the moisture it needs.

Follow these simple steps to care for skin and you will soon learn that a warm touch from a
loved one can give you comfort and energy like nothing else.

Free Up More Time by Revamping Your Laundry Room
Posted on September 27, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(ARA) – Today, time is an incredible luxury – one that we too rarely have. Between family
responsibilities, work commitments and everyday stresses, it can often be hard to accomplish
everything on the to-do list, let alone carve out time for oneself. A mainstay on the to-do list has
always been laundry, and with the average American household doing 7.5 loads per week, the
time spent washing, drying and folding really adds up.

In fact, a significant number of women are making sacrifices to make time for laundry. American
women find themselves neglecting exercise, family time and their social calendars, among other
everyday tasks, because of the time they spend on laundry, according to results of a national
survey conducted for LG Electronics USA. And, with the onset of summer, the work only
multiplies – from guest bedding and towels to sports uniforms and everyday clothing.

The good news is that there is freedom from the task that more than 77 percent of women
describe as tedious and time consuming. With some simple tips from LG Head Home Economist
Mike Wisner, you can make your laundry a faster and more efficient process. Pretty soon, all
you’ll need to worry about is what to do with all your free time.

Keep Your Laundry Room Organized

While it’s easy to let things pile up, keeping the room tidy and organized helps you save time by
making sure that you know where all of the tools you need are located. Wisner advises keeping
dryer goods separate from the items you need for the washing machine, and store ironing
necessities in their own container. Check products periodically and re-stock before you run out –
having to run to the store for dryer sheets or even detergent at the last minute is something you
want to avoid.

Have the Whole Family Do Their Part

Collecting clothes is a time-consuming task in itself, especially when unsorted clothes are left on
the floor to pile up. Instead, encourage everyone in the family to put dirty clothes into hampers,
which makes it easier to gather items that need to be washed. “Another simple step is to provide
everyone with two hampers – one for whites and one for colors – a time efficient way to sort,”
Wisner suggests.

Opt for a Large-Capacity Washer

Getting more items into the washer equates to getting more done – and faster. But overloading an
outdated, standard model can leave you with clothes that aren’t fully clean. Today’s washers are
better equipped for the job, and the new mega-capacity front-loader from LG is great for
handling huge laundry tasks. “It can accommodate a king-size bedding set, including a
comforter, and its TurboWash technology – which combines the “spin” and “rinse” cycles –
saves 20 minutes per load, even on larger loads,” he says.

Re-examine How You Dry

“While a high-capacity dryer will help, there are also other ways to cut back on drying times,”
Wisner says. Re-usable dryer balls can cut down on the time you need to keep items in the dryer
and help to eliminate static. For items that aren’t dryer safe, keep a collapsible drying rack or
retractable laundry line in your laundry room, so that you don’t need to take them outside or to a
different part of the house. Turning on a dehumidifier as hanging items dry can speed up the
process, too. And don’t forget to clean the lint from your machine following every load.

Look at the Newest Innovations

Look at some of the newest innovations on the market and learn more about the ones you have.
There are constant improvements to the stain-fighting and detergent categories: today’s stain
sticks help to eliminate messy foods before they set while easy-dose laundry packets, like Tide
Pods, make it easy to use the right amount of detergent per load. “Also make sure you study the
operating guide for your existing machine. Find out how often you should check hoses and filters
and, most importantly, learn more about the benefits of using different cycles, speeds and
temperatures,” notes Wisner. Make sure your washer is ENERGY STAR qualified, as this can
save tons in energy and electricity bills.

“Get back a bit of your life,” says Wisner, “with these simple solutions to reduce time spent in
the laundry room.” For more ideas and tips, visit

For more help with organizing, cleaning and laundry, take a look at the Keeping It Clean e-

Regular Screening Tests are Important for All Women
Posted on September 28, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(ARA) – Every woman should make time for healthy habits such as getting plenty of exercise,
eating healthy, and finding a comfortable balance between work and life. In addition, all women
should schedule routine health screenings that help detect a variety of diseases in their early
stages. When it comes to staying healthy, a proactive approach is best. Which important health
screenings have you had recently?


Do you know that a mammogram can detect a potential breast abnormality several years before
physical symptoms develop? The American Cancer Society recommends that women get a
mammogram every year beginning at the age of 40. Women who have a high risk for breast
cancer (i.e. have personal or family history of breast cancer, dense breast tissue or previous
suspicious mammograms) should talk to their physician about the screening program that makes
the most sense for them, no matter what their age.

Most insurance companies let you pick your mammography provider, so it’s important for you to
make sure the facility you choose uses the best technology available. New 3D mammograms
provide a highly detailed look through multiple layers of breast tissue. More accurate than
traditional 2D mammograms, 3D images like the ones provided by the Selenia Dimensions
mammography system, manufactured by Hologic, Inc., give clinicians a new level of clarity to
help them detect early, subtle signs of cancer.

Heart health screenings

Getting your blood pressure and cholesterol screened are two important steps for heart health. A
blood pressure screening can determine whether you have hypertension, and lets you begin a
treatment program to bring it under control. Starting at age 18, every woman needs to have her
blood pressure checked at least once every two years. Screening and addressing high cholesterol
concerns reduces your risk of heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States
according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Women should have their
cholesterol checked at least once every five years starting at about age 20. These two screenings
can take place during a physical with your doctor or at your annual women’s wellness visit. Talk
to your physician to determine whether more frequent screenings may be advisable, based on
your personal or family health history.

Reproductive health screenings

Getting a Pap test (also known as a Pap smear) and an HPV (human papilloma virus) test, along
with a pelvic exam is an important part of women’s reproductive health. These tests help to find
pre-cancerous conditions before they can turn into cervical cancer. Current guidelines from the
American Cancer Society recommend that women between the ages of 21 and 29 have a pelvic
exam and Pap smear every three years. Women between the ages of 30 and 65 should have a
pelvic exam, a Pap smear and an HPV test every five years. Alternatively, some doctors may
also recommend that women have just a Pap test and pelvic exam every three years. Women
over the age of 65 should discuss the need for continued screening with their doctor. Also,
women with certain risk factors may want to talk to their doctor about whether more frequent
screenings should be done. You may also want to talk to your doctor about the need to be
screened for sexually transmitted diseases.

Bone density tests

Bone loss can increase for women after menopause, making osteoporosis a major health concern.
In the past, osteoporosis could only be detected after you broke a bone. Today, bone density
screenings are available to help monitor bone health and reduce the risk of osteoporosis. The
National Osteoporosis Foundation recommends bone mineral density testing for postmenopausal
women and men aged 50 through 70, or when there is a risk factor, such as having a slender
frame, family history or a low trauma fractured bone. During a typical bone density test, a
special X-ray machine measures the amount of bone minerals, like calcium, located in a bone
sample such as in the forearm, hip or spine.

Colon cancer screenings

Although your doctor may recommend an earlier screening, most women should receive a
colonoscopy screening exam at the age of 50. This test helps to find colon and rectal cancer as
early as possible, giving you a better chance for a successful treatment. Many women are
apprehensive about this screening, but asking questions and having your physician explain the
process thoroughly will help you feel prepared. Remember, if you are low-risk and nothing is
found on your initial screening, colonoscopies are typically performed only once every 10 years.

Living a long healthy life is what any woman wants for herself and her family. By getting these
important screenings done on a regular basis, you’ll help ensure a future of many healthy

Easy and Affordable Ways to Spruce Up Your Space
Posted on September 28, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(ARA) – When seasons change, it’s also a good time to change out and update your home decor.
Time and budget don’t always allow for a complete overhaul, so here are some easy and
affordable ways to rejuvenate your home.

Reuse, repaint, reupholster

When you think creatively, it’s easy to give old belongings new life. Paint wooden frames or
potted plant holders with new, bold colors to quickly add a hint of color to any area. Reupholster
pillows with patterned fabric to liven up any room. Many craft stores sell scrap fabric for a

fraction of the price. Or, spend even less when you repurpose gently used clothes by turning
them into custom pillowcases.

Simple swaps and switches

Try a new take on a traditional favorite. Candles are an easy way to add instant ambiance to any
room. New Energizer Flameless Wax Candles are a long-lasting alternative that gives the same
beautiful look and feel of traditional candles. Made with real wax, these candles create the same
warm glow and realistic flicker of a flame with LEDs that never need replacing. The convenient
four-, six- or eight-hour timer means you never have to worry about “blowing” them out.

One of the reasons decor can feel worn and dated is simply because it’s familiar to you. And,
wall decor is one area that can be particularly pricey to update. An easy way to renew interest in
existing mirrors and art is by switching their location in the home. Once it has been relocated to
another room, you’ll find a new appreciation for something that’s been overlooked for years.

Create focal points

Affordable accessories are a simple way to update your space and help create focal points and
pops of color throughout each room. Consider hanging different-sized picture frames together in
clusters above a large piece of furniture, like a table, sofa or bed. Grouping frames creates one
piece of eye-catching artwork to spark conversation. For a more vibrant look, paint frames in
various bright colors. For a sophisticated look, stick with a uniform color of all white or black.

Display groups of colored vases or candles on tables, bookshelves or windowsills to draw eyes to
one or two focal points. Flameless wax candles come in different colors, sizes, heights, scents
and textures to fit any decor. Don’t be afraid to mix it up: pair candles in glass jars with pillars,
use different heights and colors, awaken the senses with scented candles and create beautiful
candlescapes anywhere for the perfect atmosphere. Because these candles have no open flame,
they are safe to use around children and pets, in small spaces and near curtains or furniture.

With a little imagination, it’s easy and affordable to spruce up your space and add ambiance to
your home everyday.

Innovative Devices Make Home Sewing Sweeter
Posted on September 28, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking

(NAPSI)—Whether you’re an expert on sewing or just wish you were, innovative devices can
make it easier and more enjoyable.

For example, there are now nine new machines from Brother™ International Corporation: the
Dream Weaver™ Quilting & Sewing Machine, DreamWeaver™ XE Quilting, Sewing &
Embroidery Machine and the DreamMaker™ Embroidery-Only Machine; the highly anticipated
Simplicity® Limited Edition Sewing and Embroidery Line by Brother,™ which consists of five
new sewing and embroidery machines; and the Duetta® 2, an affordable and easy-to-use
machine that does sewing, embroidery and quilting.

All three V-Series models have:

• A chassis offering an oversize 56 square inches of workspace.

• The extremely bright, technologically advanced, seven-inch LCD touch screen display that
displays 260,000 colors.

• Vibrant 10-inch Runway® Lighting that is 50 percent brighter than any other Brother™

• A range of built-in stitches and embroidery designs, including 91 Disney® and Disney® Pixar
designs in the DreamWeaver™ XE.

• Sew Straight™ Laser Vision Guide, a built-in laser to ensure straight, uncomplicated sewing.

• MuVit™ Digital Dual Feed, a digitally controlled, direct motor-driven, dual feed foot for
virtually perfect stitching.

• Multifunction foot controller, which allows up to three features to be programmed.

• Droplight™ Embroidery Positioning Marker, useful in identifying a precise needle drop

Partnering for the first time with Simplicity® Pattern Company, the new and affordable
Simplicity® Limited Edition Sewing and Embroidery Line by Brother™ features four sewing
machines and one embroidery-only machine. Features vary by machine but include a free arm
for sewing cuffs and sleeves; Easy Bobbin Winding System; Brother™-exclusive My Custom
Stitch™ for personalized stitches; advanced needle threading system and automatic thread
trimming; and a wide table for larger projects.

The Duetta® 2 sews, embroiders and quilts. Features include seven-point feed dogs that grip
fabric and make feeding easy—even with hard-to-handle fabric; an Automatic Height Adjuster™
AHA® to sense fabric thickness and adjust presser foot pressure accordingly; enhanced, large
8.9”, diagonal LCD touch screen display to make custom creations, edit and preview them on
screen; bobbin case; Perfect Placement Kit; and ELS® Embroidery Lettering Software.

Learn more at,,,, and (800) 4-A-BROTHER.

Kitchen Cleaning – Organize Your Approach
Posted on September 28, 2012 by Old Fashioned Homemaking
(Family Features) Maintaining a clean kitchen is important. However, there are often cleaning
tasks that get put on hold because they require a great deal of time and effort. According to the
Scrubbing Bubbles Dirty Work Index survey, men and women agree the kitchen is the most
difficult room to clean after the bathroom. Luckily, following a few simple steps and using all-
purpose kitchen cleaners make tackling tough kitchen messes easier – ensuring that your home is
not only clean but also healthy. Follow the below tips and tricks to learn how to clean your
kitchen with ease.

Tackle the Appliances

Use these tips for maintaining your oven, microwave, dishwasher and refrigerator:

If your oven boasts a self-cleaning mode, go ahead and turn it on. For the stovetop and exterior
of the oven, spray a grease-cutting cleaner that stays where you spray, such as the new Scrubbing
Bubbles Total Kitchen Foaming All Purpose Cleaner with fantastik, to thoroughly cover the
surfaces, exterior walls and oven door. Allow the cleaner to go to work penetrating and lifting
grime while you move on to the microwave. Use damp sponges or paper towels to remove the
cleaner when the grease and grime have dissolved.


To loosen grease and food spatters, boil a cup of water with a few lemon slices in the microwave
for one minute, which will help to soften dried food particles to make cleanup easier. Then, use a
foaming all-purpose cleaner and a damp sponge to easily wipe away residue and grease and
leave a fresh scent behind.


Use a toothbrush and warm, soapy water to clean around the rubber seal on the door of your
dishwasher. Use a scrubbing brush or sponge to wipe away dirt and grime on the inside of the
door, as well as the walls. Wipe away debris around the drain that could cause later clogging.
Run your empty dishwasher on the hottest cycle to help further remove buildup.


Because the refrigerator houses perishable foods, it’s crucial to your family’s health to keep it
well-maintained and sanitary. Cleaning the refrigerator requires more work than just pitching old
food. To ensure your fridge is thoroughly cleaned, turn the dial control to “0″ and remove and
discard old food items before removing shelves and drawers, then wipe them down using mild
soap and water. Next, use a toothpick and toothbrush to clean corners, hinges and the rubber
gasket. Finally, sanitize the drop pan with an antibacterial all-purpose cleaner. Cleaning the drop
pan weekly will help reduce spilled food odors. After these steps are complete, return the dial
control to the original temperature setting.

Five Tips to an Organized, Clean Kitchen

      Create a plan of action.
       Before you begin cleaning, gather everything you’ll need to tackle the
       kitchen as a whole, from rubber gloves and sponges, to the vacuum and
       mop. Assign tasks to each family member to help speed up the process.
       To ensure everything gets squeaky clean, make a checklist.
      Use all-purpose cleaners.
       Make it easier with a quality, all-purpose cleaning product that can
       tackle all sorts of kitchen messes while killing germs, such as the
       Scrubbing Bubbles All Purpose Heavy Duty Cleaner with fantastik,
       which kills 99.9 percent of germs and bacteria. This cleaner can wipe
       out tough grease and grime, without leaving behind a filmy residue.
      Reorganize and prioritize.
       As you clean the kitchen, reorganize contents of pantries, cabinets,
       drawers and spice racks so everything is easy to find, with your most-
       used items in front for easy access. Ensure anything expired is thrown
       out, and donate canned foods you don’t plan to use to a food bank.
      Dust cabinet interiors.
       Remove dry-storage food items and dust out your cabinetry. Make sure
       you get back into the corners of your cabinets with a duster or vacuum.
       Wipe down dry food items with a damp cloth and place back in the
      Get your floors gleaming.
       Vacuum or sweep floors to get them prepped for mopping. Make sure to
       dust baseboards and corners where dust and pet hair can get trapped.
       Pay special attention to the cleaning solution you purchase to clean your
       floors, as hardwood flooring especially requires specific cleaners.
For more information on Scrubbing Bubbles products, visit For
more tips on keeping your home clean, visit

Photo courtesy of Getty Images

Scrubbing Bubbles


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