Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Bigger Is Better!

 I am very excited about today's announcement from Shelf Reliance.  They are going big!  Some of your favorite products are going be available in bucket size!  No word yet which ones, but I will let you know as soon as I do!

"Shelf Reliance is proud to offer a variety of THRIVE foods that come in all shapes and sizes. Our mylar bags are just what you need for a small afternoon snack or the midnight munchies. With THRIVE pantry cans you can share the goodness of THRIVE with more of your friends and family. The #10 cans contain plenty of servings of healthy THRIVE food that you can use daily to whip up a variety of tasty homemade meals. Now, if that wasn’t enough, Shelf Reliance is taking it one step further—bigger, that is!"
Stay tuned to learn more about our upcoming launch.

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Saturday, July 16, 2011

Thrive Milk Shakes

One of the many weekly newsletters I receive is from the Hillbilly Housewife.  She gives ideas and recipes for low cost, home cooking from scratch.  I found a recipe the other day that I couldn't wait to try with Thrive!   

Just know that our family is now ADDICTED to these milk shakes!  We will not go back to plain ice cream shakes ever again!

Thrive Milk Shakes
1 to 2 cups cold water
2/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup cocoa
1t vanilla
2T oil (vegetable, corn or canola) plus a 5 second spray of Pam or other nonstick spray
(I know what you are thinking....DO NOT leave these out!  Trust me!) 
more ice

Add about 1 to 1 1/2 cups of the water, the other ingredients  and about 2 cups of ice to the blender.  Blend on high.  You may have to scrap down the sides depending on your blender.  Add more ice or water to suit your blender and your preference.  More water makes a thinner shake where as less water with more ice makes a thicker shake.  I'm sure you get the idea! 

Blend for a full 2 minutes.  There was a long, long comment section about the oil on her website.  But without it your shake will just resemble blended ice.  The oil aids in the emulsification process and is what gives it the creamy, fluffy texture!  Trust me, I tried it both ways!  

Tomorrow I am going to try it with Splenda to make it sugar free.  I'm sure all you Thrive addicts and consultants out there can just see the possibilities!  To make it vanilla I omitted the cocoa and used some vanilla syrup I found in the coffee section at the store.  I had a coupon for it and had been wanting to try it for sometime.  It was sooooooo good!!

What a great use for the fruit powder at the bottom of the fruit cans....shoot, why wait for the bottom, just throw some fruit in there!  Post a comment and tell me if you liked it and how you changed it up!

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Wednesday, July 13, 2011

One Minute Brownies

1 Minute Brownie
by Tawny Nicole<
Sometimes at the end of a long day, you just need some quiet & some chocolate! And chocolate doesn’t come in many better forms that brownies!

But, an entire pan of brownies is just too tempting!

So, my new best friend, is a Brownies in a Mug, aka: The 1 Minute Brownie!

4 Tbsp Thrive  Fudge Brownie Mix
2 Tbsp Water
Optional: 1 Tbsp Mix-In (chopped nuts, candies, chocolate chips, ect)
Combine Ingredients. Microwave on high for 1 Minute in heavy mug or cup.

This delicious treat can also be used as a perfect gift!

You can easily package Thrive Brownie Mix in a cone-shaped bag or ziploc baggie. Place baggie in a mug. Decorate with cello bag or curly ribbons. Attach tag with recipe instructions.


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Monday, July 11, 2011

Your Health: BPA

You have likely seen 'BPA Free' stickers popping up on hard plastic bottles all over the place! Just what is this BPA? Why is it so dangerous?

What Is BPA?
Bisphenol A, commonly abbreviated as BPA, is an organic compound with two phenol functional groups. It is used to make polycarbonate plastic and epoxy resins, along with other applications.
Known to be estrogenic since the mid 1930s, concerns about the use of bisphenol A in consumer products were regularly reported in the news media in 2008 after several governments issued reports questioning its safety, prompting some retailers to remove products containing it from their shelves. A 2010 report from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) raised further concerns regarding exposure of fetuses, infants and young children. In September 2010, Canada became the first country to declare BPA as a toxic substance.In the European Union and Canada, BPA use is banned in baby bottles.(Wikipedia)

Is BPA Toxic?
This is a subject of much debate. Since the FDA completed its original analysis in August, additional data on the potential health effects of BPA have emerged, linking high levels of BPA exposure to increased risk of heart disease and diabetes and even a decreased sensitivity to chemotherapy in cancer patients. The compound is also linked to developmental and brain effects in infants; BPA is known to mimic the hormone estrogen in the body, which can cause changes in developing fetuses and infants. "There is enough evidence today for the FDA to take the precaution and to certainly get BPA out of infant products," says Urvashi Rangan, senior scientist and policy analyst at Consumers Union. "Even more, consumers should not be ingesting this substance while the science is being figured out."(Time Magazine)

A 2008 draft report by the U.S. National Toxicology Program (NTP) concluded that “there is some concern for neural and behavioral effects in fetuses, infants, and children at current human exposures,” and that there is “some concern for bisphenol A exposure in these populations based on effects in the prostate gland, mammary gland, and an earlier age for puberty in females.”

Dr Oz suggest the BPA may be making us fat.

BPA has been linked to many health problems.

BPA is also known to have a negative effect on the environment.
In general, studies have shown that BPA can affect growth, reproduction and development in aquatic organisms. Among freshwater organisms, fish appear to be the most sensitive species. Evidence of endocrine-related effects in fish, aquatic invertebrates, amphibians and reptiles has been reported at environmentally relevant exposure levels lower than those required for acute toxicity. There is a widespread variation in reported values for endocrine-related effects, but many fall in the range of 1μg/L to 1 mg/L.(Wikipedia)

In Conclusion, The jury may still be officially 'out' on BPA, but it is something we should all be mindful of.

Where do we find BPA?
BPA is hiding everywhere. It is in water bottles, milk jugs, ling of cans of baby formula, lining of many cans and many other places. Heat causes BPA to leach at up to 50% more quickly. This means, do NOT heat or reheat your foods in plastic containers. Do NOT leave water bottles in the sun. When in doubt do not reuse plastics or cans.

One easy way to identify BPA is by the recycle code on the bottom of most plastics. 
In general, plastics that are marked with recycle codes 1, 2, 4, 5, and 6 are very unlikely to contain BPA. Some, but not all, plastics that are marked with recycle codes 3 or 7 may be made with BPA.

Thrive & BPA
You can feel safe feeding your family foods from Thrive and Shelf Reliance. All Thrive cans and pouches are BPA FREE!! Our specially lined cans are durable, safe, and add to Thrive foods long shelf life. Best of all, with Thrive foods, you don't have to worry about dangerous, toxic substances such as BPA leaching into your families food.

Many baby food containers  contain BPA. With Thrive foods you can quickly make healthy baby food in minutes! Just rehydrate your chosen foods and puree! No need to boil or steam! You can then freeze your homemade baby food eliminating your baby's exposure to BPA.

How many toxic and dangerous chemicals is your family being exposed to on a daily basis? Are you or your family suffering from any health problems as a result of these toxic chemicals and compounds? What can you do today or change tomorrow to limit your family's exposure to toxins such as BPA?

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Friday, July 8, 2011

History Of Food: The Root Cellar


Welcome! I love history! Through history, we are better able to understand ourselves, where we have been, and where we are going.

Each week, I am going to share a bit with you about the history of food storage!
Lucky for us, food storage is the easiest and healthiest it has ever been! Start your home store today and you will always have fresh yummy food on hand for you and your family!

The Root Cellar

Root  Cellars are an ancient form of long-term food storage of foods and veggies and fermented beverages.

Early records show Root Cellars in use 40,000 years ago.
Native Australians were among the first to take advantage of the insulated properties of burying food.
Walk in food storage cellars were invented in the 17th century in England. This was the first appearance of the root cellar as we know it.

According to Hobby Farm, “the most notable practitioners of root-cellar arts were the early colonists that arrived in North America from the United Kingdom. The eastern halves of America and Canada contain thousands of old root cellars, and the small Newfoundland town of Elliston actually claims the title of “Root Cellar Capital of the World,” and boasts of over 135 root cellars, some dating back 200 years.”

How Does it Work:

Root Cellars were essentially the first refrigerators. The under ground storage provided a dark cool environment to store produce and slow or prevent spoilage. A good root cellar can often be 40F cooler than the outside temperature.

You can store just about anything in your root cellar! Some preparations and precautions are needed for some items and to prevent some produce from causing a bitter taste to others. One cellar may be used for items needing a high humidity, and a lower humidity cellar for other goods requiring a lower humidity such as canned foods, and grains.

According to Wikipedia, “Vegetables stored in the root cellar primarily consist of potatoes, turnips, and carrots. Other food supplies placed in the root cellar over the winter months include beets, onions, preserves/jams, salt meat, salt turbot, salt herring, Winter squash, and cabbage.Separate cellars are occasionally used for storing fruits, such as apples. Water, bread, butter, milk, and cream are sometimes stored in the root cellar also. In addition, items such as salad greens, fresh meat, and jam pies are kept in the root cellar early in the day to keep cool until they are needed for supper.”

Want to learn more or build your own root cellar?

Start your own Chapter in Food Storage History today!

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Wednesday, July 6, 2011


There are also some incredible deals in our emergency supplies!
Our Camo Cord is 50 feet of camouflage pattern braided polypropylene cord on a reusable spool.  Great for general use and perfect for a daypack or 72 hr kit.

  • 50 feet length
  • 1/4 in. think
  • Camouflage pattern
  • reusable spool

With 60 yards of tape, you'll have ample material for sealing or repairing anything you see fit. Keep extra rolls of duct tape in your car, RV, camping gear, or emergency kit. The many uses it supplies are limitless.

  • 60 yards included
  • Highly adhesive
  • Versatile

Duct tape is a must for any survival kit!  
Look at this great price!

Stock up on these great buys today!

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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Sweet and Sour Pork or Chicken

I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE our FD Pineapple!  When I saw Tiffany's recipe for Sweet and Sour Pork or Chicken, I knew I had to share it!

If you haven't already tried FD Pineapple, it will rock your world.  THRIVE outdid themselves as they went to 16 different companies before they chose this company for the finger licking, tongue tingling fruit. 
If you'd like a sample of this delectable fruit, email me at thrivingtexasmama@gmail.com for more information.

The following recipe is adapted from the Betty Crocker Bridal Edition Cookbook.
Getting Started:
1 1/2 c FD Pineapple
4 c water
8 cups cooked rice
1 1/2 lb boneless pork (or chicken)
Vegetable Oil

1/2 c flour
1/4 c cornstarch
2/3 c cold water
1/2 t salt

Skillet Mix:
1/2 c brown sugar
1/2 c white vinegar
1/2 t salt
2 t soy sauce
1/2 t minced garlic
2 t cornstarch

1. Combine pineapple and 4 c water in a bowl and allow to soak in the fridge.  Begin cooking your rice.  Click here if you need a rice recipe and just double what it calls for.
2. Remove excess fat from pork or chicken and cut into 3/4 in cubes.  Heat deep fryer or dish to 360 degrees.  Note: I don't fry things very often so I just filled a skillet with about 1 in vegetable oil to cook the pork.
3. Combine all of the batter ingredients into a medium mixing bowl and whisk quickly until mixture becomes smooth.  Add pork pieces to batter and toss around until each piece is well coated.
4. Add pork pieces one at a time to frying oil leaving a little space in between each one so they will not stick together and so they will be easy to turn.  Cook them 5-6 minutes long turning each piece 2-3 times until golden in color.  Drain on paper towels and keep warm.
5.  Get 2 1/2 c water from bowl of pineapple (add water to equal 2 1/2 c if there isn't enough) and put this, brown sugar, vinegar, 1/2 t salt, soy sauce, THRIVE carrots, THRIVE Mixed Bell Peppers, and garlic into pan and bring to a boil.  Let it cook for 6-7 minutes.
6.  In pineapple bowl, add 2 T cornstarch (2 T water if there isn't any water remaining and the pineapple soaked it all up).  Mix well, then add cooked pork.  Mix again.
7. Add contents of the bowl into the pan with the rest of the cooked ingredients and allow to boil for 1 minute, stirring constantly.

Makes 6-8 servings.
Serve with one cup of cooked rice.

If you are lucky to end up with pineapple powder at the bottom of your can and aren't quite sure what to do with the powder, you can visit here for more ideas.  To purchase pineapple or see any of your other favorite THRIVE products, you can go to ThrivingTexasMama.com.

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Monday, July 4, 2011

Made In America


In today’s age of ‘out sourcing’, almost every product we buy has ‘made in china’ or a similar country attached. When we pick up our phone to make a customer service call, our calls are often transferred over seas. In this day and age ‘made in America’ has become something rather rare.

According to the ABC News, if every American bought $3.33 worth of American made goods every week we could create 10,000 jobs.

In many areas of the country, we know just how bad those jobs are needed. It’s basic economics. Spend money on goods made in your area, this creates jobs in your area, and stimulates the economy and helps it grow in your area.

We love our country! We have the best country in the world! So, lets show out support for our country! If spending just $3.33 on American Goods creates 10,000 jobs imagine what $9.99 would do!
We have strong work ethic standards in this country. When we buy American made goods, we know the workers received fair wages and fair conditions. When we buy American goods we know the goods meet health and other standards and regulations we have in this country to ensure quality.
So, take some time. Turn over the products on the shelf. Look for Made in The USA.
Many companies are opening, building, or reestablishing factories here in the USA. So, you will be seeing more made in the USA!

Another great way to ensure you are getting American Made goods, Shop With Shelf Reliance & Thrive.

Shelf Reliance is an American Based Business. Your personal consultant in someone you know and trust. By shopping with Shelf Reliance, you are stimulating your local economy, buying US goods, and buying delicious high quality foods.

So hop on over to My Online Store and spend your $3.33 toward the cause!
Made In America. Buy with pride in your country & your community.

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Repurposing Your Empty Cans

 Looking for something to do with all those #10 and Pantry Size cans!  Here are a few ideas.

Kaboose.com has a great recipe for
photo from http://affectionfordetail.blogspot.com

From rd.com
from Extraordinary Uses for Ordinary Things

Separate hamburgers Before you put those hamburger patties in the freezer, stack them with a coffee-can lid between each and put them in a plastic bag. Now, when the patties are frozen you’ll be able to easily peel off as many as you need.

Hold kitchen scraps Line a coffee can with a small plastic bag and keep it near the sink to hold kitchen scraps and peelings. Instead of walking back and forth to the garbage can, you’ll make one trip to dump all the scraps at the same time.

Make a bank To make a bank for the kids or a collection can for a favorite charity, use a utility knife to cut a 1/8-inch (3-millimeter) slit in the center of the plastic lid of a coffee can. Tape decorative paper or adhesive plastic to the sides of the kids’ bank; for a collection can, use the sides of the can to highlight the charity you are helping.

Keep the laundry room neat Have an empty coffee can nearby as you’re going through the kids’ pockets before putting up a load of wash. Use it to deposit gum and candy wrappers, paper scraps, and other assorted items that kids like to stuff into their pockets. Keep another can handy for coins and bills.

Make a dehumidifier If your basement is too damp, try this easy-to-make dehumidifier. Fill an empty coffee can with salt and leave it in a corner where it will be undisturbed. Replace the salt at monthly intervals or as needed.

Keep carpets dry Place plastic coffee-can lids under houseplants as saucers. They will protect carpets or wood floors and catch any excess water.

Keep toilet paper dry when camping Bring a few empty coffee cans with you on your next camping trip. Use them to keep toilet paper dry in rainy weather or when you’re carrying supplies in a canoe or boat.

Gauge rainfall or sprinkler coverage Find out if your garden is getting enough water from the rain. Next time it starts to rain, place empty coffee cans in several places around the garden. When the rain stops, measure the depth of the water in the cans. If they measure at least an inch, there’s no need for additional watering. This is also a good way to test if your sprinkler is getting sufficient water to the areas it is supposed to cover.

Make a spot lawn seeder When it’s time to reseed bare spots on your lawn, don’t use a regular spreader. It wastes seed by throwing it everywhere. For precision seeding, fashion a spot seeder from an empty coffee can and a pair of plastic lids. Drill small holes in the bottom of the can, just big enough to let grass seeds pass through. Put one lid over the bottom of the can, fill the can with seeds, and cap it with the other lid. When you’re ready to spread the seeds, take off the bottom lid. When you’re finished, replace it to seal in any unused seed for safe storage.

Eliminate workshop clutter You want small items like screws, nuts, and nails to be handy, but you don’t want them to take up workbench space. Here’s a way to get the small stuff up out of the way. Drill a hole near the top of empty coffee cans so you can hang them on nails in your workshop wall. Label the cans with masking tape so you will know what’s inside.

Soak a paintbrush An empty coffee can is perfect for briefly soaking a paintbrush in thinner before continuing a job the next day. Cut an X into the lid and insert the brush handles so the bristles clear the bottom of the can by about 1/2 inch (12 millimeters). If the can has no lid, attach a stick to the brush handle with a rubber band to keep the bristles off the bottom of the can.

Catch paint drips Turn the plastic lids from old coffee cans into drip catchers under paint cans and under furniture legs when you’re painting. Protect cupboard shelves by putting them under jars of cooking oil and syrup too.

Gift Wrap
Cover the outside of a coffee can with wrapping paper or a bright coat of spray paint. Then, drop your gift inside; pop the lid on; and you're done. It's a great option for both edible and non-edible gifts.

A Toad House
Tired of finding bugs munching on your plants? Toads are great pest control. Invite one to your yard by creating a toad house out of an old coffee can. 

Collect a bunch of coffee cans, and use them to make lanterns for your backyard. They're great for parties, but sturdy enough to hold up to daily use.

 E-How.com has several great ideas!  These ideas use the plastic coffee cans, but could be done with the #10.

Pencil Holder  Look at this from SpottedCanary.com.  I have a ton of scrapbook stuff I could use for this!  

These are actually paint cans, but could be easily adapted for the #10 cans!  Use different scrapbook papers to make a can for your dog treats, or use some festive paper and use it as a gift can!  The possibilities are endless!

Have pictures of what you have done?  Share them with us on my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/thrivingtexasmama
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