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Donna Kelley, CNC
02/03/2015 3:28 PM
Donna Kelley, CNC

Are Your “Gut” Guests Friendly or Hostile?

Probiotics are friendly bacteria (good bugs) that live in your intestinal tract. You have probably seen a few of their names on yogurt containers like Lactobacillus or Bifidobacterium or Saccharomyces boulardii – these are the “live cultures” living in fermented foods such as yogurt and sauerkraut. However, buyer beware – not all yogurt is created equal and may not contain these beneficial bacteria. So, please check the nutrition panel on the container for these words “live cultures”...

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Donna Kelley, CNC
01/27/2015 9:08 PM
Donna Kelley, CNC

Super Bowl Sunday is just around the corner. Your best buddies, friends, and family will be feasting out on many different finger foods. Here is a recipe that should delight and satisfy your taste buds, along with your body absolutely loving all the great nutrients provided. Please enjoy this fabulous and simple recipe and do let me know what you think…

Pork Souvlaki Kabobs with Tzatziki – Makes 4 servings – Vegetarian Style: replace pork with portobello mushrooms.

These zesty kabobs burst with Greek flavor, which...

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Via Press Release
01/29/2015 7:28 AM
Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch

Many Americans made New Year's resolutions to feel better and avoid burnout in 2015. Below is new national data listing California as the 25th "Least Emotionally Recharged U.S. state for 2015,” according to the Lantern Emotional Balance Index.

Lantern is a groundbreaking online and mobile tool for evaluating your mind and health. To create this ranking, Lantern surveyed 3,000 Americans to determine how frequently respondents are taking action to renew, refresh and recharge their emotional well-being.

Based on a survey period...

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Kelsi Himmel
12/26/2014 11:07 AM
Kelsi Himmel. Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch
A program of interest to Amador residents is being presented by American Association of University Women. The speaker will be Kelsi Himmel, Environmental Educator, discussing her recent experience viewing the impact of oil extraction and mining on ecosystems and communities in Ecuador’s rainforest. Himmel will be describing her direct observations of consequences in the region of the Yasuni, which borders the Napo River, as well as other regions affected in Ecuador. She will show a film and follow it with a presentation on what she... [Read more]
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Brent Parsons
12/12/2014 9:39 AM
I did not submit a column last week. Jerry Budrick had been my conduit and encouragement since I began as a regular contributor over a year ago. There is no editor right now and rather than wait, I called and left a message for the publisher, Jack Mitchell, who I assumed would add the duties to his until someone else gets them. Jack returned my call within minutes and asked me to keep writing. He would continue to publish anything within reason and taste. And so after a week’s hiatus, I got on the phone and tracked down Ron Regan.... [Read more]
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Brent Parsons
11/25/2014 11:03 AM

I‘ve been self-employed since 1979, when I took what I thought would be a temporary break from teaching eighth grade. I picture-framed, operated a gallery and now run two small hardware stores, one with a partner, Jeff Kelley.

Working for one’s self has its challenges, namely survival — the statistics are not encouraging. But once a proprietor, it is difficult to back-track or work for another. The self-employed are a peculiar lot — independent, confident and stubborn — basically ungovernable. But when those traits are combined...

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Lisa Lucke
11/25/2014 11:09 AM

For as long as I’ve known my husband, which is 11 years, I’ve known that Thanksgiving is his favorite holiday. I know this because our souls are deeply, almost cosmically connected, and because every year about this time, I overhear him tell someone, “Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday.”

I’ve always just assumed it was because of the food. But this year, I decided to find out what was so special about it (to him) that it causes the year-on-year giddiness. I finally asked the other day, when he got home from work (school) and...

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Lisa Lucke
11/20/2014 10:17 AM

So far this November, I’m thankful that Facebook (at least on my newsfeed) hasn’t been deluged with that tiresome habit of people posting one new thing every day that they are thankful for. My eyes were sore from rolling them last year. I finally stopped reading when I saw, “I’m thankful for the love of my turtle.” Say what? Your turtle loves you? But even the obvious thank-you posts, like, “I’m thankful for the love of my children,” or “I’m thankful for clean air to breathe,” get a little old.

I’m not suggesting that we should...

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Brent Parsons
11/13/2014 1:35 PM
Wolf Hein
I was once a used bookstore junky. I lived in Santa Cruz where they, along with used record stores, fit in nicely. I could ride my bike downtown and enjoy the weirdness, along with the stores. A good bike lock was a necessity that sometimes only saved the frame. Wheels, seats and handlebars might be missing, depending on location, time and quality of components. When we had our first child, I pushed a stroller or carried a lively backpack. My store visits decreased when I had to spend time in the children’s section, and when we moved... [Read more]
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Lisa Lucke
11/13/2014 11:44 AM

I’ve noticed lately that when I read certain stories in the news, my first reaction isn’t always — typical. In fact, I guess it could be called ironic. Like, for instance, the other day I read a story about a dad who kidnapped his 9-year-old son in Seattle instead of returning him to his ex-wife, and sailed away for a tiny atoll off the coast of New Zealand.

As I read the story, I thought, “Some people get all the luck.” (Note: the kid was eventually found unharmed and having a great time.)

That story reminded me of another...

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Donna Kelley, CNC
11/04/2014 3:40 PM
Donna Kelley, CNC

What do you grab when you are hungry?

Pumpkin seeds are an amazing small food that has many nutritional, healthy benefits to the human body, as well as being “fun” to eat as a snack. I simply love them. Pumpkin seeds are a “whole” food, something recognizable, not like a sugary/floury snack. I would like to encourage those of you who are constantly on the run to stop and consider a healthier snack choice, such as nuts and seeds, especially pumpkin seeds, instead of grabbing a highly processed sugary/floury snack that creates the...

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Via Press Release
10/31/2014 1:30 PM
Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch

A quick-and-easy addition to pumpkin pie ingredients results in a pie that just may become your go-to recipe. A bit of molasses added to the filling brings a note of caramel and spice.

Molasses is derived from sugar cane juice. The first boiling makes a light syrup that’s perfect for pouring over pancakes and waffles (or with the addition of live yeast and a little age, for making rum). But it’s the second boiling that we love — a darker, thicker, slightly less sweet syrup with a signature flavor that’s ideal for baked goods, glazes...

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Via Press Release
10/31/2014 1:12 PM
Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch

NSF International survey findings reinforce the need for international water quality standard

A vast majority (82 percent) of consumers report they are concerned about trace levels of emerging contaminants in drinking water, such as pesticides and herbicides (87 percent), prescription drugs (34 percent) and detergents (24 percent), according to a new survey from NSF International, a global public health and safety organization.

Emerging contaminants include some prescription drugs, over-the-counter medications, flame...

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Lisa Lucke
10/30/2014 12:06 PM

It’s not every single day, or maybe it is, when a moment presents itself to us that just stinks of importance. That is, if one is interested in taking their human experience to the next level. It is in these moments that people could benefit greatly from a little reflection, and time to allow the words, “I think I could use a little adjustment here” to bubble up.

For all you lovers of remaining exactly the way you are, consider this: Unless you are seriously deranged, you are not the same person with the same beliefs that you were...

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Via Press Release
10/24/2014 10:41 AM
Are you confused by expiration dates on food items? Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch

NSF International Survey Reveals How Confusion About Food Expiration Dates Can Impact Health and Wallets

Expiration date labeling on food products is a source of confusion for consumers according to a new survey from NSF International, a global public health and safety organization. The survey found that people are confused about how to interpret dates on food packaging such as expiration, “best used by” and “sell by” dates, causing many to keep some food dangerously long or prematurely throw away good food.

One in four...

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Via Press Release
10/10/2014 9:12 AM

Last week, I wrote about how several companies have been making changes to their employees’ pension plans by freezing them (not contributing to them anymore) or terminating them all together. To help address this issue, I wrote about and discussed on my radio show some options that we can do to minimize the effects of this and try to maximize our retirement without a pension plan. One of the key ways to do this is to maximize out our personal retirement plan accounts.

Since the defined benefit pension plan no longer controls the...

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Via Press Release
10/10/2014 9:03 AM
Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch

When last we met, I had just spent the first night of my weekend alone in my mountain cabin, mostly reading, writing and trying to keep up with my hound’s extreme neediness, including sleeping in the exact center of the bed and needing to go outside in the pitch blackness to pee.

8 a.m., second day: Determined to stick with my new workout regimen even at the cabin, I scavenge around looking for something to serve as a dumbbell. I settle for a cast-iron Dutch oven. After my lunges, tricep raises and bicep curls, I make a mental...

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Lisa Lucke
10/09/2014 1:23 PM

When last we met, I had just spent the first night of my weekend alone in my mountain cabin, mostly reading, writing and trying to keep up with my hound’s extreme neediness, including sleeping in the exact center of the bed and needing to go outside in the pitch blackness to pee.

8:00 a.m., second day: Determined to stick with my new workout regimen even at the cabin, I scavenge around looking for something to serve as a dumbbell. I settle for a cast-iron Dutch oven. After my lunges, tricep raises and bicep curls, I make a mental...

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Brent Parsons
10/09/2014 12:55 PM

I began attending Sutter Creek City Council meetings in 1990. I was new in town, had a business on Main Street and hoped my family was here for the long run. Fortunately, we were. My two little toddlers are off 25 years later planting roots of their own. It wouldn’t surprise me if they end up back in the town of their childhood. It was a great place to raise them and they realize that now.

The late 1980s and early 90s were times of significant change in once-remote Amador County. Subdividers saw opportunity in these golden hills....

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Tessa Marguerite
10/10/2014 11:33 AM
Anna Belfrage's latest time-traveling, romance and adventure novel. Photo courtesy to the Amador Ledger Dispatch
“Revenge and Retribution” travels back in time to an era of superstition, religion and love in the 17th century. “The Graham Saga” continues in Anna Belfrage’s newest book. We catch a glimpse of the beginnings of American history through the eyes of a modern-day woman, Alex, who has no other choice but to adapt to her new surroundings. “After all, while time traveling itself is a most rare occurrence, time traveling with a return ticket is even rarer.” Follow the dramatic lives of Matthew Graham, a 17th century man, and his... [Read more]
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