Day: July 1, 2019

Let's Eat, Wining & Dining

Festive Coolers for the Hot Weather

By Judy Eichner Festive Coolers for the Hot Weather While traveling in Puerto Rico and Jamaica, several years ago we were invited to several outdoor barbecues and to our delight, we discovered some different drinks than those that are normally served at a barbecue. You can make any summertime gathering festive with this assortment of cool, refreshing party beverages. You will find both alcoholic and nonalcoholic drinks below. Orange-Mint Tea 2 cups boiling water 2 tea bags ¼ cup fresh mint leaves 2 tablespoons sugar 1 quart orange juice 2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice In a large pitcher, place boiling water, tea bags, mint leaves and sugar; let stand 10 minutes.  Remove the tea bags, then stir in the orange and lemon juices. Refrigerate until cold. Before serving, strain to remove mint leaves. This makes about 6 eight ounce servings. Peach Champagne Punch 1 can (16 oz) sliced peaches in light syrup, chilled 1 pint strawberries 1 cup peach-flavored brandy, chilled 1 bottle (2 liter) lemon-lime soda, chilled 2 bottles (each 750 ml) champagne, chilled Drain peaches; reserve syrup. Place peach slices and strawberries in two ice-cube trays; fill with water; freeze until firm. Just before serving, in large punch bowl, combine reserved peach syrup, brandy, soda and champagne; stir. Add fruit ice cubes to punch. Makes about 32 four ounce servings. Champagne Fruit Punch 6 cups chilled orange juice 1 cup water ½ lb. seedless grapes 1 sliced orange 1 pint fresh strawberries, hulled and halved, if large 1 bottle (48 oz) chilled Hawaiian guava drink 1 bottle (750 ml) chilled, dry champagne Fresh Mint The day before – combine 2 cups orange juice with the water in a large pitcher. Pour 2 cups orange juice mixture into a 3 cup ring mold. Reserve remaining orange juice mixture. Freeze…

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Beauty & Health, Fitness

Fit or Fat???

By Nicole Flangan Fit or Fat??? Obesity in America is a big problem. We as a society are getting fatter each year. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, more than one-third of U.S. adults are obese. Some of the leading causes of death in this country include obesity related conditions such as heart disease, stroke, and type 2 diabetes. With that being said, I believe it may be time to take a closer look at how food and fitness play such an important role in the longevity and quality of this modern life. Today the term “you are what you eat” can have a very bad outlook if you consider what we are putting into our bodies. So much of what we eat is processed and manufactured to the point that when we consume this “food” our bodies don’t know what to do with it. The human body is meant to break down foods that come from natural sources such as whole grains, fresh produce, and natural sources of protein. Food should be seen as a source of energy for the body. When we eat clean natural food our bodies can use every molecule. Each molecule goes to someplace in the body where it can be used and does something positive for your health. Protein molecules go to building and repairing tissue. Healthy fats are used to lubricate cells and keep things like hair, skin and other organs healthy. Molecules from complex carbohydrates are broken down and used as energy for the body to carry out its daily processes. Fiber is used to clean out our system and water carries important nutrients where they need to go. When every little bit of food is used up there is nothing left to store as excess fat. However, when…

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Business Profile

Pedego Electric Bikes are on the Run!

By Lani Gering hello, fun… Pedego Electric Bikes are on the Run! Pedego Electric Bikes made their debut into Old Town Alexandria a little over a year ago when, after 25 years, Todd Ketch decided to leave his lobbying/association management position in D.C. to pursue something that he has a passion for and that provides something for people that makes them happy and is fun…enter Pedego. When he was sourcing for his second career, he ran across an article in Inc. Magazine that highlighted the founders of Pedego – Californians Don DiCostanzo and Terry Sherry – and the rest his history. He liked what he read and decided having a Pedego Electric Bike dealership was the way to go. Not your run of the mill two wheeler, a Pedego has an electric motor that provides two variations of assistance – Pedal Assist and Twist Assist. The Pedal Assist systems sense your pedaling and provide assistance automatically and the Twist Assist is actually a throttle on the handle bar that provides full power on demand. Most Pedegos have both options since that’s what people want. Pedal assist is nice for that long ride with a few stops while the throttle is good if you can’t pedal for some reason or just don’t feel like it.  These cool bikes come in several different models. Everything from the collapsible “Latch” that can travel almost everywhere to a three wheeled “Trike” that is built for optimal comfort and stability. There are models for every level of expertise and I am sure the “Trail Tracker” will even appeal to the hard core mountain biker. From all appearances, I think the bulk of the interest in these modes of transportation comes from those of us in the 40-65+- age range – which is most of the…

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Beauty & Health, Spiritual Renaissance

Keep Going.

By Peggie Arvidson Keep Going. Six months ago pretty much everything I thought I knew about my life, my happiness and my future, started to fly apart at the seams. The only way I can explain how it felt is that it was like being in a vacuum vortex in a near constant state of vertigo. My world felt like it was crumbling and I saw myself as the little Dutch boy of myth – trying to stop a deluge with a finger blocking a hole in a dam. A particularly apt description because water almost always represents emotions in any spiritual setting. At the time I felt utterly alone and exhausted while also being supported by dozens of people and angels. The angels were the strangers I met, the miraculous coincidences that popped up and of course, the animals that I encountered every day. Water was pouring from the sky – it was the wettest winter in memory in Tucson and on the day that I packed up to move back east the snow was falling in big, wet flakes. Looking back, I know I was shell shocked. I couldn’t sleep, didn’t eat and found a very macabre sense of humor to get me through the worst. The people who surrounded me with love from near and far held me up when I didn’t know what to do next and kept me focused on forward momentum. Because of that support system I could put one foot in front of the other, just like Indiana Jones when he took his leap of faith, in order to move toward an open-ended future. That’s the thing about the future of course. As much as I was sure what my next year and next decade would look like, from the house I would…

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Featured Post, On the Road, Pets, Places, & Things

On The Road

Former Alexandria residents who transported themselves to Kitty Hawk took the OTC on their latest adventure. Here with Bogie, their favorite bartender on the Viking ship Forseti, Charlie and Sandi Collum share the OTC with all on board. The Collums spent three weeks in France recently aboard two Viking longships and they always make it a point to make friends with the bartenders. This couple aren’t just good looks – they know who the important people are on board.

Featured Post, Financial Focus, Pets, Places, & Things

Three Tips for Pursuing an Active Retirement

By Carl Trevison and Stephen Bearce Three Tips for Pursuing an Active Retirement Retirement today is active—a time to reinvent yourself, pursue your passions, or do the work that you find especially rewarding. The freedom to do that requires careful planning, says Will Larson, Retirement Planning Strategist for Wells Fargo Advisors. Here, he provides his top three ideas to consider when it comes to preparing for active, fulfilling retirement years. 1. Have a clear, focused plan. During most of your working life, it’s fine to plan based on realistic estimates of what your retirement might be like. “About five years before you retire, though, you should get very accurate and detailed with the assumptions about how you’ll live and what you want to accomplish,” Larson says. Along with creating a detailed estimate of your costs in retirement, this is also the time to plan out what you want in this next chapter—and how you’ll afford it. “For some people, recognizing that you can retire is often more powerful than the act itself,” Larson says. Which means that when you no longer need to work, you might choose to work anyway, for the sheer enjoyment—or choose to work at a job you’re passionate about but have never had the freedom to try before. A side benefit: Continuing to work can help you delay using your retirement savings. 2. Let your finances inform your lifestyle changes. Once you make the switch to retirement, you might also need to adjust the way you think about your money. In your working years, you save for retirement and focus on accumulating assets. In retirement, you take actions that help give you a reliable, sustainable cash flow and keep your spending and expenses in line with that cash flow. It’s crucial to develop a clear picture…

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Beauty & Health, First Blush


HOW TO CONTROL OILY SKIN DURING THE SUMMER MONTHS By Kim Putens Oily skin combined with 100% humidity in Washington DC equals havoc.  It doesn’t have to reach havoc stage if you follow these simple tips. Tip 1 – Keep oily skin balanced by washing right.  Make sure to use the right type of face wash to break down oils but not dry it out.  When we see a breakout, our first reaction is to reach for the benzyl peroxide and dry it out.  While you may see instant gratification, the problem is your skin will have a complete breakout meltdown shortly thereafter.  The reason is the over drying caused by the harsh response makes the skin produce more oils to compensate for the attempt to dry it out.  Thus, the skin experiences more and worse breakouts.   The best way to combat this is to use a cleanser with at least 2% salicylic acid.  The salicylic acid will clean out the pores of the excess oil, but will not dry it out. Tip 2 – Lighten up on your night cream.  No matter your skin type, the extreme humidity of summer makes it unnecessary to use heavy moisturizers.   The general rule of thumb – if you use a cream in the winter, switch to a lotion.  If you typically use a lotion, consider a hydrating serum.  And, if your skin is extremely oily, you may not need a lotion at all. Tip 3 – Exfoliate and slough off dead skin cells and clean out pores.  Using a physical exfoliation once a week will help to relieve the skin of dead cells and unclog pores.  For even better results, follow the exfoliation with a mask.  Clay masks are best – particularly during summer months – because the clay works…

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Pets, Places, & Things, Urban Garden

The Slug… Your Adversary

The Slug… Your Adversary Slugs may be a very serious problem to you if you live in moisture-laden areas of the country. A single “lawn prawn” can successfully remove an entire row of seedlings from your garden in no time at all. He can turn a perfect plant into Swiss cheese over night and return to the safety of his hideaway, leaving you to wonder what happened. As slugs wander about, doing their evil little slug deeds, they leave behind them a trail of slime that amounts to nothing less than a road sign for themselves and every other slug to follow to the grand feast. To make the situation even worse, slugs are hermaphrodites, they all have male and female reproductive systems. Yes, they can mate with themselves, and in the privacy of their own abode, each slug will produce two to three dozen eggs several times a year. The egg clusters look like little piles of whitish jelly BB sized balls. They will hatch in anywhere from 10 days to three weeks or longer, and these “sluglings” can mature to adulthood in as little as six weeks. Destroy the eggs… wherever you find them. Slugs may live for several years, getting larger with proportionately larger appetites each year. Now, do you really want to go out to your garden some morning and find an 18-inch Banana Slug waiting for you? The Battles and the War Although you may never win the war against snails and slugs entirely, you owe it to your plants to fight them with every weapon at your disposal. You can control slug populations with several different methods. With each battle that you win, you have prevented hundreds of new slugs from hatching. The Battlefield As with any battle plan, it is to your advantage…

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Arts & Entertainment, Events, Events

Alexandria July 2019 Event Calendar

The Main Event – Happy Birthday Alexandria! July 13th USA/Alexandria Birthday Celebration 7 to 10 p.m. Admission: Free Oronoco Bay Park 100 Madison Street Celebrate America’s 243rd birthday and Alexandria’s 270th along the Potomac River waterfront at Oronoco Bay Park. Enjoy live music by the Alexandria Symphony Orchestra, patriotic birthday cake, food vendors and a dazzling fireworks display. More Summer Events & Tours: 4th An American Celebration at Mount Vernon 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Admission: Included with price of admission ($20 for adults; $19 for seniors; $12 for ages 6-11; free for children ages 0-5) George Washington’s Mount Vernon 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway 703-780-2000 Salute the first commander-in-chief during this annual Independence Day event. Watch dazzling made-for-daytime fireworks shoot off over the Potomac River and listen to the roar of cannon fire during special military re-enactments. Enjoy free birthday cake (while supplies last), a visit from General and Mrs. Washington and a performance by the National Concert Band during its “Red, White and Blue” concert. Spend a truly inspiring day at a truly inspiring place. An American Celebration takes place rain or shine. 12th-14th Plein Air at Mount Vernon 12 to 4 p.m. Admission: Included with price of admission ($20 for adults; $19 for seniors; $12 for ages 6-11; free for children ages 0-5) George Washington’s Mount Vernon 3200 Mount Vernon Memorial Highway 703-780-2000 Join us for three days of Washington-inspired painting in the upper and lower gardens with renowned artist Simon Bull. During this first-ever event, watch visiting artist Simon Bull at work painting flowers, trees and scenes from the gardens on a mural-sized canvas. As you watch Bull use a brush and pour paint on the canvas, he will share his process and painting techniques and answer questions. 20th Cinema Del Ray Outdoor Movies 7 p.m.; films begin at…

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Pets, Places, & Things, Points on Pets

Pets of the Month

Princess, Adult, Spayed Female, White Short-haired Rabbit No need to bow to Princess, although an offering of hay is always appreciated. This little lady puts on no airs when meeting her new friends. Though she can be a little shy at first, this social lady loves to be surrounded by her people. Princess comes right up to new friends for pets and cuddles, and can’t wait to meet her future family! Adoption profile: Adoption information: Photo courtesy of Alison Lane Photography Milo, Adult, Neutered Male, Brown Tabby and White Domestic Shorthair Milo would love to be your main man!  A cat of action, he’s always one to introduce himself to new friends first, especially if they have one of his favorite toys in hand.  When he’s not napping, Milo is always on the go.  Keeping an eye out for potential friends, chasing his favorite toys, Milo is a busy guy who is looking for a best friend who can keep up. Could it be you? Adoption profile: Adoption information: Photo courtesy of DeSilva Studios, LLC. Roxie. Adult, Spayed Female, Tricolor Treeing Walker Coonhound Howdy, everybody!  Meet Roxie! Roxie’s a hound’s hound – loves sniffing, and has a beautiful singing voice, but only for special occasions – like chasing a squirrel!  She’s not one to join in the raucous hubbub in the shelter.  She’s a really easy going girl, easy to walk, and loves to play with other dogs – she’s a spunky and spry playmate!  Roxie also loves to share hugs and snuggles with her two-legged friends.  She’s the kind of girl that fits in to a good and simple life, happy with a treat, a little sojourn down the block, and some warm companionship. Adoption profile: Adoption information: Photo courtesy of Alison Lane Photography

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