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Summer’s almost here! There are so are many opportunities for lots of outside activities. It’s “just plain ol’ good” to enjoy being outside and active again. Working in the yard, playing with our little garden, experimenting (playing) with some hydroponics, walking, going to the lake. I feel so much better this year, have so much more energy and plan on being outside and going as much as possible.
Here are two recipes that have helped me. They are all quick, easy, and taste really good. I’m hoping you can enjoy them during the busy summertime, so I’m passing them on to you.
Chocolate Banana Protein Milkshake
8-12 ounce lowfat or non-fat milk (8-12 grams of protein)
2 rounded soup spoons of Nestle’s No Sugar Added Chocolate Milk Mix
2 rounded soup spoons (1 scoop) of flavored Protein Powder (20-22 grams of protein)
1 banana
Mix ingredients in a blender.
This has about 75 percent of the daily protein needs for a woman, a little over 50 percent for a man.
This shake tastes really good, is a good source of potassium (helps avoid leg cramps), and would be a great, cool summertime treat! My wife has this protein shake almost every morning as her breakfast. If you want a regular milkshake, simply omit the protein powder.
Slawsa
Here’s my slaw recipe. I’ll sometimes eat a “slaw sandwich” as part of a meal or as a snack, using lite bread. This slaw is crunchy, juicy, lightly sweet, low in calories and very satisfying.
1 medium or 1/2 large head of cabbage, shredded or grated
1-2 carrots, grated (optional)
1 C. mild salsa
1/2 C. tomato ketchup
2-3 Tbsp. vinegar
2 packages Equal or Splenda
Salt and pepper to taste
Stir all together in a large bowl. Tastes best if refrigerated for several hours ó it’s even better if it sits overnight. It’s a great red “BBQ” style slaw.
nnn
It has been exciting talking with folks this past winter and spring who have shared their weight loss journeys with me. People who decided they were “sick and tired of feeling sick and tired.” And they did ó we did ó something about it. We all made decisions to work on making our lives better, to work on becoming healthier.
Everyone did it a different way. I think that’s great! It shows me again that there is no ONE way that is right for everyone. Each of us must find our own path, walk our own journey. And, if we’re lucky, we get to help someone else along the way. That’s one thing we can do to make a real difference ówe can help someone else along the way. That, in and of itself, can help make our lives better.
nnn
Two recent “helpings” that I wanted to share:
n Losing a lot of weight makes buying new clothes necessary, not simply an option. Replacing a whole wardrobe of clothing can be quite expensive. I was incredibly blessed by Jim and Lisa Grazyck this past spring, who passed along some of Jim’s clothes to me. Jim had lost weight, and his “old” clothes fit me perfectly. And they were quite nice, too. What a blessing!
n And then there were the Freeman boys, Alex and Mack. Their mom, Maria, works at Erwin Middle School with my wife. Maria had been reading my articles to them (they are too young to read much, yet). The story is, one day they were at Wal-Mart and saw a sandcastle building set. When the boys saw it they told their mom they needed to buy it and give it to me for our beach trip this summer. Did they want one? Nope.
“They said they were too old for it,” Maria told my wife.Beth brought it home, we read the card attached and ó well, we both cried. How wonderful it is when people can do nice things for each other and pass along a little kindness. And especially touching is when young children want to share their hearts with you. It can be overwhelming. Simply overwhelming. And inspiring. Truly inspiring.
nnn
Everyone teaches us something ó how TO live or how NOT to live. The generosity of others continually touches my heart, teaches me how TO live. I hope to pass that spirit on. Each of us can do that. We can decide it’s “Time for Life to be Better,” we can work to make it happen, and then we can reach out to help someone else. We can “pass it on!” Campfire sing-along anyone?
nnn
Dave Cook’s column, “Time for Life to be Better,” appears the first Friday of each month. Contact him at TimeToLiveBetter@cs.com.

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