Wednesday, June 22, 2011

The Fox Soccer Channel, Animal Planet, Sprout And Pay Per View Porn???

Z is a huge soccer fan and he really wanted me to get him the Fox Soccer channel so he could watch the games. About a week ago I finally agreed to order it for him and everyone was happy until I discovered that we also now had about 10 pay per view pornography stations. Figuring that Time Warner must have made a mistake and turned on too many stations when they upgraded me, I called them and asked them to please remove these stations.

The first thing I was told was that I should just put the parental controls on them. I explained that I didn't want these stations in my home on principle. Again I was told that I should just put on the parental controls. After some more back and forth along these lines they agreed to take them off. Of course the next morning they were still there.

To make a long story short after a bunch of phone calls and my upgrade being cancelled and then reordered they finally admitted that there was nothing they could do because the pornography pay per view stations came with my upgrade. This was insane as far I was concerned. If I wanted to have the Fox Soccer network and lets say Animal Planet or Sprout I had to get pay for view porn with it. I decided to cancel my service and ordered RCN another local cable company.

RCN came the next day and replaced our cable and our Internet. So far it's been great. My favorite thing about it is that it comes with Pandora Internet radio. This means we can listen to Pandora, which we love, and not have to have the computer on. It also comes with a bunch of free pay per view channels (Yeah Scooby Do!) for the kids. Best of all we now have the Fox Soccer channel, Animal Planet and Sprout with out having to have pay per view porn.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

Vote For Me!

For those of you who know me well you know how much I hate social networking. It's kinda of become a thing with me. I take pride in the fact that I'm not a (and please excuse this expression) blog ho. I am an anti- promoter. In fact if I could find a way to have less readers I actually might consider it!

For some crazy reason someone put me on the Circle of Moms list to vote for the top 25 NYC mom blogs. When I checked out the other blogs I was totally surprised at how professional looking they are. I think some of them even make their writers money! So since I am in such good company I would love if you all could take a minute and vote for me. Here's the link:

Vote Here!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Breastfeeding Is Protective Against SIDS And This Effect Is Stronger When Breastfeeding Is Exclusive

A very interesting study was published this week in Pediatrics on whether or not breastfeeding protected infants from SIDS and this was the conclusion:

Breastfeeding is protective against SIDS, and this effect is stronger when breastfeeding is exclusive. The recommendation to breastfeed infants should be included with other SIDS risk-related messages to both reduce the risk of SIDS and promote breastfeeding for its many other infant and maternal health benefits.

Here is a link to the study.


Friday, June 10, 2011

Sprouted Spelt and Almond or Hazelnut Muffins

These muffins are a family favorite for breakfast or a snack. I use sprouted spelt flour and either almond  or hazelnut flour so I always feel good about my family eating these. The two things that I love about sprouted flour is that it tastes more delicate than flour that has not been sprouted and sprouting  also improves the nutritional value of the flour.

You can find Shiloh Farms sprouted spelt flour at Whole Foods or online or you can order freshly ground spouted flour from from To Your Health Sprouted Flour Co. I've been getting my nut flour from Digestive Wellness since Passover (they had kosher for Passover nut flours!). Their nut flours are ground really fine and their hazelnut and almond flours have the brown membrane removed before it is ground. 

Ingredients:
1 1/2 cupAlmond or hazelnut flour
1 1/2 cup Sprouted spelt or sprouted whole wheat flour
2 1/2 teaspoons of baking powder
3/4 teaspoon of finely ground sea salt
2 teaspoons of almond or hazelnut extract
3/4 of a cup of butter plus butter to grease the pan
1/2 cup of sucanat
3 eggs
1/2 cup of milk

1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees and grease the muffin tin them with butter.

2. Combine the flours, baking powder and salt in a bowl and put aside.

3. Cream the butter and then add the sucanat.

4. Add the eggs one at a time and the nut extract. The mixture will seem liquidy but that's the way it should look.

5. Add the nut flour and the milk at the same time and mix until well combined.

6. Place the batter in the muffin tin and bake for 25 minutes.

7. Let them cool and remove from the tin (the muffins might have need a little help from a butter knife to get out of the tin).

This post has been linked to Fight Back Fridays on Food Renegade

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Recipe: Last Minute Upper West Side Shavuot Cheese Cake

Shavuot is know as the dairy holiday (Check out this Aish link  to find out why). This is one of the reasons why Shavuot is my favorite holiday. Since there is a  separation of meat and milk observant Jews can't bake with dairy products when they serve meat so most on most Shabbats and holidays. We have to find non dairy substitutes when making dessert. Not that it means that dessert can't be delicious but let's face it, non dairy cakes and ice cream just does not taste as good as their dairy brethren.

Cheesecake has become synonymous with Shavuot. Almost everyone will serve cheesecake at least once during the holiday but it is a little complicated to make. Each year I plan to finally learn how to make a cheese cake but the truth is with this cheesecake as an option it just doesn't make sense to bother buying a 10" spingform pan! Below is my go to cheesecake recipe. It always comes out perfect!


1. Walk or take a bus, train or cab to Fairway.

2. Go to the bakery and get either a 5 inch cheesecake for $6.99, a 7 inch cheesecake for $11.99 or a 10 inch cheesecake for $16.99.

3. Pay at the register

4. Bring it home and put it in the fridge

5. Eat it on Shavuot!

As a friend of mine once said  "you couldn't make this good a cheesecake yourself for less money."

Chag Sameach!

Monday, June 6, 2011

Learning on Shavuot at Manhattan Jewish Experience

One of my favorite things about of Shavuot is the centuries old custom of staying up all night to learn Torah. One explanation of this custom is that on the morning that the Jews were to receive the Torah they over slept and G-d needed to wake them up! Mystics also believed that on the first night of Shavuot the heavens receive the studies and prayers, thought and of those who are awake. There really is something spiritual about learning Torah all night and then reciting the morning prayer Shacharit at sunrise.

All over the world synagogues and other Jewish organization run all night learning program including special programs for people with a limited background in Judaism. In Manhattan there is a Jewish outreach  organization called Manhattan Jewish Experience run by Rabbi (and drummer!) Mark Wildes and his wife Jill. Each year they run all night learning programs for people with a limited background in Judaism. At MJE on the Upper West Side the topic will be The Devil Within: Torah as a Means to Refining our Character and Overcoming Our Demons. At their East Side location the topic will be Freedom and Human Rights:  Jewish Views on the "Arab Awakening" and at MJE Downtown it will be A Paradigm of Balance: Jewish vs. Secular.

The programs start at about 8PM and even if you can't stay up all night it will be well worth it to go for a few hours. On the West Side there is a dinner that costs $36 but the rest of the programming is free. Officially the crowd is in their 20's and 30's but all are welcome. There are both singles and couples (married and unmarried, with and without children) involved with MJE. By the way I am turning 45(Yikes!) this month and I feel right at home there.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Tissue Paper Flowers for Shavuot



It's hard to believe that it's been almost seven weeks since Passover. Shavuot, which commemorates the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai, is almost here. Of all the Jewish holidays Shavuot is my favorite. One of the customs of Shavuot is to decorate the Synagogue and home with flower. These tissue flowers are a perfects craft for this holiday. They are easy (all of my kids were able to do at least some of this) and quick an you can find everything you need at your local stationary store.

Materials:
Tissue paper
Scissors
Green pipe cleaners
Pencil


1. Cut your tissue paper into eighth.



2.Take six of the pieces of the tissue paper and fold them up like a paper fan.



3. Fold the tissue paper in half.


4. Use a pencil to draw a rounded edge and then cut a rounded edge. You can also do a pointed edge, double rounded edge or a double pointed edge (or any other shape you can think of!).


5. Cut 2 pieces off the bottom of the folded tissue paper.


6. Open up and attach the pipe cleaner.


7. Spread out the fanned tissue paper and gently pull up the pieces.

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