Celebrate your life, you are your own light.
CONTINUING THIS WEEK ON HOW CELEBRATING EACH DAY IS GOOD FOR OUR HEALTH? PLUS, THE BOOK TEN-MINUTE RELAXATION FOR MIND AND BODY.
Are you ready for Tuesday!
As it is getting closer to 2023, are you planning and scheduling celebrations?
Hold on a second, it is still the Christmas holidays; Dan, and I are still stuck on Christmas transitions
Yummy, I am sitting at Barnes and Noble typing on my tablet, smelling peanut butter cookies.
And this tradition came to my head, Gingerbread Houses.
Although Queen Elizabeth 1 gets credit for the early decorating of gingerbread cookies, once again, it is the Germans who lay claim to starting the gingerbread house tradition.
And when the German Brothers Grimm wrote “Hansel and Gretel” a new holiday tradition was born.
Today, the edible decorations are available in a slew of pre-packed kits.
Run, run, fast as you can -
You can’t catch me, I’m the gingerbread man!
The Gingerbread Man, a fairy tale
No confection symbolizes the holidays quite like gingerbread in its many forms, from edible houses to candy-studded gingerbread men to spiced loaves of cake-like bread.
In Medieval England, the term gingerbread simply meant “preserved ginger” and wasn’t applied to the desserts we are familiar with until the 15th century.
The term is now broadly used to describe any type of sweet treat that combines ginger with honey, treacle or molasses.
Ginger root was first cultivated in ancient China, where it was commonly used as a medical treatment.
From there it spread to Europe via the Silk Road.
During the Middle Ages it was favored as a spice for its ability to disguise the taste of preserved meats.
Henry VIII is said to have used a ginger concoction in hopes of building a resistance to the plague.
Even today we use ginger as an effective remedy for nausea and other stomach ailments.
In Sanskrit the root was known as srigavera, which translates to “root shaped like a horn”.
This is a fitting name for ginger’s unusual appearance.
Gingerbread houses originated in Germany during the 16th century.
The elaborate cookie-walled houses, decorated with foil in addition to gold leaf, became associated with Christmas tradition.
Their popularity rose when the Brothers Grimm wrote the story of Hansel and Gretel, in which the main characters stumble upon a house made entirely of treats deep in the forest.
It is unclear whether gingerbread houses were a result of the popular fairy tale, or vice versa.
Recently the record for world’s largest gingerbread house was broken.
The previous record was set by the Mall of America in 2006.
The new winning gingerbread house, spanning nearly 40,000 cubic feet, was erected at Traditions Golf Club in Bryan, Texas.
The house required a building permit and was built much like a traditional house. 4,000 gingerbread bricks were used during its construction.
To put that in perspective, a recipe for a house this size would include 1,800 pounds of butter and 1,080 ounces of ground ginger.
Sounds more like a gingerbread resort!
As we continue to celebrate this holiday season, Dan and I are starting a new series; HOW CELEBRATING EACH DAY IS GOOD FOR OUR HEALTH?
Continuing from yesterday, appreciate the “negatives” in your life.
Obstacles and challenges teach us resilience, humility and they allow us to become more capable of overcoming bigger problems.
Instead of going ballistic over your neighbor’s barking dog, be grateful for the opportunity to practice patience.
DECEMBER 13th, Dan, and I thought on continuing this segment with the series with some fun; What is it about December that is so significant during this month?
National Cocoa Day – December 13, 2022
Again, this holiday reminds Dan and I of this restaurant in Mexico, Nora made the best cocoa hot and cold drinks.
Also, cocoa balls to die for!
So, this goes out to our friend from Mexico and the memories of the Tuesday market and Nora’s restaurant.
National Cocoa Day is celebrated on December 13 every year.
Hot cocoa is typically made with cocoa powder, heated milk or water, sugar or as the Aztecs, agave.
However, some also call it hot chocolate, which causes a bit of confusion.
Hot chocolate is made by using ground chocolate containing cocoa butter.
We can also make chocolate liquor by fermenting, drying, roasting, and grinding cocoa beans.
After this, the cocoa butter is removed, and we are left with only the cocoa powder.
This cocoa powder is used to make hot cocoa. It is a relatively healthy drink with very little fat and calories, depending on what you add to it.
Chocolate has a long and ancient history.
The first origins of cocoa can be traced back to 5000 years.
Archaeologists believe that this is only as early as we can trace it.
Of course, the chocolate back then was much different from that which we consume now, as sugar was still scarce.
The beverage was flavored with vanilla, chili, and was served throughout the year.
It was reportedly more popular during the Olmec period, where it was used for spiritual praying.
It was once used as a trade currency in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica.
It first was found by European explorers in South America, where it was already enjoyed for hundreds of years before the arrival of the Europeans.
Not only that, but it was the Spaniards who first found the flavor unpleasant and declared it bitter.
In fact, chocolate became an acquired taste. It would not be until it was introduced to Europe and adopted as a luxury drink of the wealthy that it would be sweetened.
This led to the invention of milk chocolate.
And it wouldn’t be until 1828 that powdered chocolate would be available for consumption.
Soon after this, the chocolate bar and instant hot cocoa came into existence.
The three prominent varieties of cocoa plants are Forastero, Trinitario, and Criollo. Forastero is a commonly used variant that contributes to up to 90% of the world’s cocoa production. Trinitario originated from Trinidad and is a hybrid variety of cocoa.
Criollo is prone to diseases and less common, it is mostly cultivated mainly by Venezuela.
Trinitario is foremost in quality and when compared to the other two varieties, it produces higher yields due to its disease-resistant nature.
Time is precious and is priceless, so Dan and I will continue each day to pull from a box of 365 inspirational quotes, one quote and share with you.
BELIEVE IN REWARDS THAT AWAIT YOU, BELIEVE IN THE HARVEST IN STORE.
Today Dan and I will be continuing the book, Ten-Minute Relaxation, For Mind and Body by Jennie Harding.
Whenever you are feeling under pressure, ten minutes is all you need to relax totally, using tools that are always with you; your senses.
This book is packed full of wonderfully simple ideas and exercises for using sight, taste, smell, hearing, and touch and that vital sixth sense of intuition to rebalance your energies and bring you back into harmony with the natural world around you.
Identify your favorite sensory relaxation solutions and combat that stress!
Per Dan and my experience this is another component in keeping ourselves healthy, meditation.
By using your five senses, you can learn to relax in just ten minutes.
CHAPTER 2; THE SENSORY JOURNEY; TOUCH
TOUCH THE ESSENCE OF CARE-
SWITCHING ON THE SENSE
Today, FABULOUS FOOT-SOOTHING TREAT
You will be amazed at how rejuvenating and energizing a foot massage can be.
Even if you are tired when you begin.
The combination of foot massage and aromatherapy oils will be being a sense of zest.
It is easy to do and a great way to prepare for a night on the town!
Tomorrow, TEN-MINUTE SOAK
The PHRASE TO REMEMBER; Health is Wealth.
We stand by this and continue to do daily; walk, meditation, and Qigong.
YOU ARE YOUR OWN LIGHT
Until Wednesday, celebrate who you are in your deepest heart.
Love yourself and the world will love you.