Monday, February 27, 2012

Read Memories for FREE!

Book cover created by
Tugboat Design.
Deanna Lynn Sletten just released her newest novel, Memories, and you can get a copy FREE this week! How cool is that? She's offering two free days for you to download the book from Amazon. Just visit the Memories page on Amazon Wednesday, 2/29, or Thursday, 3/1 (March already? Are you kidding me?), and you can have your very own copy of Memories to enjoy at no cost.

Don't have a Kindle? Not to worry! Just install the free Kindle for PC reader on your computer (I did and it's great!) or one of the free reading apps on your phone or whatever - or you can even read books in your web browser - and you can enjoy ebooks any time you want. So, what are you waiting for?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Are You an Uninspired Cook?

Tangy chicken ready to cook!
I'm an uninspired cook. Are you? I don't like to spend a lot of time cooking and have trouble coming up with ideas. So over the years, I've come up with a few dinners that meet the following criteria:
  • Simple REAL ingredients (and not too many)
  • Quick and easy prep
  • Uses only one pan

One of my favorites is this tangy, low-fat chicken dish that is absolutely delicious. See? Only a few ingredients.

Just a few simple ingredients.

And only one pan!

Tangy chicken ready to eat!

What could be simpler than that?

So, what are your favorite quick and easy meals?

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Crystal Clear Edits Logo - I'm Branded Now!

Crystal Clear Edits logo
by Karen Horn at Sunlitway
Check out the stellar logo Karen at Sunlitway designed for Crystal Clear Edits! Isn't it great? How clever is she to use a shining star in my name? I am so happy to have a cool logo for my new venture!

In addition to the logo and background photo on the site, Karen also designed some ads for me. One is already featured on a writer's blog and I have a couple more ad-placement plans in the works.

So, who is Karen anyway?

For those who don't know, Karen is my SIL who also happens to be a professional photographer and graphic designer. How lucky am I to have so much talent close at hand?

But guess what? You can benefit from Karen's talent, too. Logos, ads, website background photos - what do you need? Contact her through Sunlitway and I'm sure she'll be happy to discuss your website and/or project design needs.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Will Walk for Food - One Easy Way to Increase the Effectiveness of Your Weight Loss and Fitness Efforts

Do you want to know an easy way to increase the effectiveness of your diet and exercise efforts? Get some aerobic exercise BEFORE you eat each morning. Yep - that’s it. My big tip. But does it work?

A Little Backstory

Several months ago, I read about some little-known tips that shave pounds over at Number four on the list was aerobic exercise before breakfast. According to Dr. Kathleen Hickey, a bariatric physician,
This is when your insulin level should be its lowest, and therefore the energy for the workout has to come from fat. Whenever insulin levels are elevated — which is nearly most of the rest of the day given how frequently Americans eat — fat stores are protected and cannot be used for energy.
Well, this was certainly news to me! So what to do? Go for a little fitness walk each morning before I eat anything. Yes, I WILL walk for food.

But is it Working?

Yes! I was more interested in improved fitness than weight loss, but I always pack on a few pounds over the winter and this year I haven’t. In addition, I am eating whatever I want, whenever I want. The biggest advantage, however, is that I actually get out and walk every day – rain or shine, sleet or snow (gee, maybe I should work for the postal service!) – no breakfast until I do, no excuses.

But Will it Work for YOU?

I don’t see why not. Just make sure you set yourself up for success.
  • Pick an aerobic activity that is easy for you to do every morning. For me, it’s walking.
  • Have the right gear. For me, proper COMFORTABLE footwear is a must. That means good boots in the winter and light shoes with ample support in the summer.
  • Step up your game over time. To get even more benefit from my morning walk, I’ve added a few hills and increased the distance. I also made myself a weight belt from some ankle weights to wear around my waist, giving me the benefit of carrying extra weight without undue strain on my knees.

So what are you waiting for? Make a plan and start getting some aerobic exercise tomorrow BEFORE breakfast. (FYI: This includes no sugar or cream if you drink coffee or tea before exercising.) And if what you try doesn’t seem to work for you, try something else! Consistency is the key, so find what fits into your real life and make it a habit.

NOTE: If you are diabetic, this tip is NOT for you!