First and foremost, congratulations to Connor “Toof” Williams! On Saturday he earned his Iron Dog title in Davenport, Iowa. Iron Dog is a Flyball title a dog can earn after he/she has played the game in NAFA (one of the Flyball organizations) for 10 consecutive years!! It is quite the accomplishment! Way to go, Toof!
AND it was only last year that Connor’s brother, Duncan Williams, got his Iron Dog title! Such good boys! We are so proud!!
I baked cookies in the shape of dogs and bones for Flyball practice to celebrate Connor’s accomplishment! Speaking of Flyball, I totally got to take a ride on the box when our German Shepard, Cami, was in the line-up. (As in she hit the box and the box turned about 45* on impact.) I was quickly told, “You aren’t heavy enough for this job.” I’m just going to take that as a compliment and not a reflection of my box loading skills.
Now, why do strong bones matter? I read an article in a magazine the other day about how strong bones help reduce your risk of osteoporosis. Osteoporosis affects almost 60% of people age 50 and older! Holy smokes!
Did you know that women who are small-boned and thin are more susceptible to osteoporosis? Did you know that having a history of fractures as an adult or having a parent who has had fractures are risk factors? Did you know that smoking or drinking 3+ alcoholic beverages a day are risk factors? Did you know that simply being Caucasian or Asian increases your risk factor?
Fact: About one in two women older than 50 will break a bone in their body because of osteoporosis.
Well, exercise can help! Bone-specific exercises help you maintain the bone strength you have built through your 20s which is when you reach peak bone mass. Exercise improves muscle strength, balance, coordination and agility all of which reduce your risk of falling and hence fracturing a bone. And over time, exercise may also strengthen bones directly.
The American College of Sports Medicine recommends weight-bearing endurance activities such as tennis, stair climbing and jogging 30-60 minutes at least three times per week. Why? Because when your muscles and skeleton bear your own body weight, it stresses your bones which respond by increasing bone strength. They also suggest jumping 5-10 minutes a day three to five times a week. Yep, that’s right! Jumping as in volleyball, basketball, skipping and jumping rope because when you land on the ground, the impact stimulates bone growth.
Just do it!
BTW, we got our first snow yesterday. It’s wayyyy too early to be dealing with snow and ice and freezing temperatures. It was the first time Envy had ever seen snow! She didn’t seem too impressed–although, by the time I took her out in it, the big flakes were done and it was the icy, wet stuff falling. She will have another chance because it is guaranteed to snow more in the state of Wisconsin!
Give me just a few more weeks of autumn!! Please!! The girls love the leaves and the crisp, cool weather just like I do!
Oh, and VT totally won the game because I made Callie wear her VT bandanna on Saturday…
Quote of the Day:
“I believe in pink. I believe that laughing is the best calorie burner. I believe in kissing, kissing a lot. I believe in being strong when everything seems to be going wrong. I believe that happy girls are the prettiest girls. I believe that tomorrow is another day and I believe in miracles.” -Audrey Hepburn
Time to start the holiday season off with cookies! You can’t go wrong with cut-outs!!
- 1/2 pound (2 sticks) unsalted butter, at cool room temperature
- 1 cup brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 whole egg plus 1 yolk
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 1/2 cups bleached all-purpose flour, plus extra for work surface
- 3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
1. Cream butter, sugar, and salt in an electric mixer at medium speed until light and fluffy. Add yolk, beat well then add whole egg and vanilla; continue beating until well incorporated.
2. Add flour, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, allspice, and cloves; beat over low speed until flour mixture is just mixed. Divide dough in half and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour. (Can be refrigerated up to 2 days or double-wrapped and frozen 1 month.
3. Adjust oven racks to upper and lower middle positions. Heat oven to 375*. Remove one disk of dough from refrigerator and cut in half. Return unused portion of dough to refrigerator.
4. Lightly flour work surface; roll dough to 1/8-inch thick, using offset spatula to loosen dough. Sprinkle surface lightly with flour as needed to keep dough from sticking.
5. Cut or form dough into desired shape. Place dough shapes 1/2-inch apart on parchment-lined cookie sheet. Bake, rotating cookie sheets halfway through baking if necessary, until evenly golden brown, 6 to 8 minutes.
Courtesy of Cooks Illustrated