Archive for May, 2009

Some Backgrounds

Sunday, May 31st, 2009

Here are some backgrounds to use in DAZ/Poser and for PSP/Photoshop projects.

The first set –The Woods


4 backgrounds of wooded areas.


The second set — The Fairy


4 backgrounds from a fairy’s point of view


TOU:¬† These backgrounds were created by me, Dragon’s Breath.¬† You have free use of the tube, just do not claim it as your own.¬† If your group requires a copyright notice (I do not), please write:¬† copyright:¬† Dragon’s Breath.

Chain Link Elements

Sunday, May 31st, 2009


1 Chainlink tileable background
6 Chainlink shaped elements

TOU:¬† These PNGs were created by me, Dragon’s Breath.¬† You have free use of the tube, just do not claim it as your own.¬† If your group requires a copyright notice (I do not), please write:¬† copyright:¬† Dragon’s Breath.


Devils in Church

Sunday, May 31st, 2009

I had thought I’d seen it all in church, but this morning took the cake.¬† I remember my mother complaining that my children were fidgety in church, but my children were nothing like the two that sat in front of us in church this morning.

My husband, his mother and I sat in the same pew that we always do.¬† Well, I say always, but actually it’s every other week.¬† We alternate taking care of his mother.¬† One week she’s with us, the next week she’s with his sister.¬† This week it was our turn, and we sat where we always sat.

I am not a faithful church goer.¬† I’ve fallen out with some of my religion, but this church — St. George’s — I like.¬† I’ve been to several churches in the towns I’ve lived in, and found many of them to be clique-ish and snobby.¬† But St. George’s is not like that.¬† We were welcomed from the first time we attended, and people seem to be very courteous to each other.¬† And on the most part, everyone, including the children, are well-behaved and do not distract from the mass.

I’ve had families with young children sit in front of us before.¬† Young babies, young toddlers — but no one has been as distracting as these two were today.¬† Most of the time we leave mass commenting on how beautiful “that baby” was, or how quiet that family with 5 children was.¬† In the 3 years there, we’ve seen quite a few children participate in mass.¬†

And I guess that’s part of the reason why I like this church.¬† When my children were their age, I was often made to feel like I didn’t belong in church.¬† Toddlers were shoo-ed away to the Cry Room, whether they were bad or not.¬† My children didn’t misbehave in church, and I wasn’t going to isolate myself in the Cry Room when the children belonged in mass.¬† I still remember when we went to the first Christmas service after my daughter was born.¬† She was just 2 months old.¬† We attended Christmas Eve mass, so that we could leave early in the morning to go to my parents.¬† We sat in the congregation with everyone else.¬† The only noise that the baby made was hunger cries that were soon quieted when she took her bottle.¬† As we walked out of church after mass, I went to shake the priests hand, wish him Merry Christmas.¬† But rather than return it in kind, his first words out of his mouth were, “Do you know that we have a cry room off to the side?”¬†

And I was turned off to church.  How could I attend church when my own children were not welcomed?

I did go back to mass, but not to that church.  I made every effort to maintain control of my children and to teach them the tradition of the mass.  My children may not have been perfect, but they were quiet and did not disturb anyone.  Yet, I was still pressured to sit in the Cry Room.  And I drifted away from mass.

When I re-married, I began attending church again with my husband and his mother — every other week.¬† But just us.¬† My children do not know church, and would not go, but I did not even ask them to attend with us either.¬† And so the three of us go to church together, and I marvel at how the congregation seems to welcome everyone with open arms.

And they welcomed this family, too.  There was no priest when they left, waiting to tell them to put their children in the cry room.

I first noticed the family for two reasons.¬† One reason was the fact that the man and the grandmother were Indian.¬† That fact stuck out because there were no other Indians who attended this church, and this was their first time in mass.¬† They sat in the pew directly in front of us.¬† They walked in, towing two little boys– who I thought at first were twins (the second reason), but after some observation, I realized they were not twins, but at least a year, maybe two years apart.¬† And when the grandmother immediately pulled the oldest boy to the outside of her, and the father pulled the youngest boy to the outside of him — immediately separated the two boys before they even sat down — I knew that mass was going to be interesting today.¬† And these boys did not fail me.

I did notice immediately that the woman, who had to be their grandmother, was very matriarchal in her actions.¬† The father was more peaceful — a Gandhi type.¬† The father would talk quietly to the boys, gently.¬† The woman would act more quickly, more orderly.¬† She paid alot of attention to the older boy, leaving the young one for the father to deal with.¬† I remember thinking that it was a shame the way she acted.¬† During the entire mass, she hardly ever addressed the younger son, not even when he was sitting next to her.¬† She ALWAYS corrected the older boy, talked to the older boy, gave the older boy things from her purse.¬† And I remember thinking how awful it must be for the younger one to grow up around that woman, feeling like he will always be second best.

The father would talk to both of them and seemed to treat both of them alike, but he was slow to act.¬† Slow, compared to the grandmother.¬† And very calm.¬† I marveled at his patience.¬† Because I’m sure that from the little snapshot of energy we saw in these two boys in church, they must be holy terrors at home.¬† And the father did not seemed stressed one bit.¬† He never raised his voice.¬† He never jerked the kids around, just gently guided them apart from each other.¬† I never saw an angry expression cross his face.¬†

And I would not have heard them at all during mass, except that I was sitting directly behind them.

These two boys looked to be maybe 5 & 6, or 6 & 7.  They were typical for their age, very jittery, but also very rebellious to that grandmother.  She pulled a no-no by favoring one child over the other.  And the boys realized that they were being treated differently. 

At one point, she gave the older child a rosary to play with, so that he’d keep quiet.¬† Well, that was like candy to the other child.¬† He wanted it, so he crossed the pew behind his father and moved next to his older brother, wanting to see the rosary.¬† Naturally, the older brother would not share.¬† The father once again was oblivious to the little disagreement that was brewing, but it soon caught the grandmother’s ear.¬† She talked to them, and gave the younger boy another rosary.¬†

After a while, the older boy was being abusive to his rosary, trying to stretch or break it.¬† He kept dropping it on the floor, and soon the grandmother took the rosary from him.¬† Well, older brother couldn’t stand that his got taken away and younger brother’s did not, so he reached over and tried to grab the rosary from his brother.¬† Well, little brother wouldn’t give it up, so they began a tug of war — sprawled out on the pew, fighting over a rosary, while his grandmother and father were standing and praying with the rest of the congregation.¬† Oblivious.¬† And hubby and I were laughing to ourselves over this site–two little devils fighting over a rosary!

The father finally noticed after about 5 or 10 minutes of prayer.¬† I believe one the boys had hit him on the leg.¬† He separated the two, calmly.¬† The grandmother saw the commotion and yanked the older boy again to the side of her, but he didn’t stay.¬† As soon as she returned to praying, he crawled behind her to sit between them, next to his father.¬† I couldn’t hear what the father had told him, but he must have denied the boy something because the boy spent the rest of the mass, quietly crying, and hugging his dad’s leg, and begging for something.

And the dad’s countenance never changed.¬† Whatever he had told the boy, the boy knew that the dad meant it.¬† But the dad did it with patience and gentleness.¬†

Did these boys distract me from the mass?  At times, but I have to say that I prayed more!

Lacy Mums

Friday, May 29th, 2009

Here are 4 tubes of Mums made from lace pattern:

TOU:¬† These tubes were created by me, Dragon’s Breath.¬† You have free use of the tube, just do not claim it as your own.¬† If your group requires a copyright notice (I do not), please write:¬† copyright:¬† Dragon’s Breath.






Scripting Mums

Friday, May 29th, 2009


Here is a PaintShop Pro Script for create mum flowers from a petal that you design first.  Please see this tutorial on how to use the script, because you must create the petal first before using the script!  By creating your own petal, your mum will be unique.


Nutritional Guidelines

Friday, May 29th, 2009

Daily Value Guidelines Set by FDA

Daily Values–DRVs

The new label reference value, Daily Value, comprises two sets of dietary standards: Daily Reference Values (DRVs) and Reference Daily Intakes (RDIs). Only the Daily Value term appears on the label, though, to make label reading less confusing.

DRVs have been established for macronutrients that are sources of energy: fat, saturated fat, total carbohydrate (including fiber), and protein; and for cholesterol, sodium and potassium, which do not contribute calories.

DRVs for the energy-producing nutrients are based on the number of calories consumed per day. A daily intake of 2,000 calories has been established as the reference. This level was chosen, in part, because it approximates the caloric requirements for postmenopausal women. This group has the highest risk for excessive intake of calories and fat.

DRVs for the energy-producing nutrients are calculated as follows:

  • fat based on 30 percent of calories
  • saturated fat based on 10 percent of calories
  • carbohydrate based on 60 percent of calories
  • protein based on 10 percent of calories. (The DRV for protein applies only to adults and children over 4. RDIs for protein for special groups have been established.)
  • fiber based on 11.5 g of fiber per 1,000 calories.

Because of current public health recommendations, DRVs for some nutrients represent the uppermost limit that is considered desirable.The DRVs for total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium are:

  • total fat: less than 65 g
  • saturated fat: less than 20 g
  • cholesterol: less than 300 mg
  • sodium: less than 2,400 mg


Sodium Guidelines Set by the FDA

  • Sodium-free¬†‚Ästless than 5 milligrams of sodium per serving
  • Very low-sodium ‚Äď 35 milligrams or less per serving
  • Low-sodium ‚Äď 140 milligrams or less per serving
  • Reduced sodium ‚Ästusual sodium level is reduced by 25 percent¬†
  • Unsalted, no salt added or without added salt ‚Äď made without the salt that’s normally used, but still contains the sodium that’s a natural part of the food itself


The FDA and USDA state that an individual¬†food that has the claim “healthy” must not exceed¬†480 mg sodium per reference amount. “Meal type” products must not exceed¬†600 mg sodium per labeled serving size.

 Shake Your Salt Habit (American Heart Association)

Nutrient Content Claims

The regulations also spell out what terms may be used to describe the level of a nutrient in a food and how they can be used. These are the core terms:

  • Free. This term means that a product contains no amount of, or only trivial or “physiologically inconsequential” amounts of, one or more of these components: fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium, sugars, and calories. For example, “calorie-free” means fewer than 5 calories per serving, and “sugar-free” and “fat-free” both mean less than 0.5 g per serving. Synonyms for “free” include “without,” “no” and “zero.” A synonym for fat-free milk is “skim”.
  • Low. This term can be used on foods that can be eaten frequently without exceeding dietary guidelines for one or more of these components: fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, sodium, and calories. Thus, descriptors are defined as follows:
    • low-fat: 3 g or less per serving
    • low-saturated fat: 1 g or less per serving
    • low-sodium: 140 mg or less per serving
    • very low sodium: 35 mg or less per serving
    • low-cholesterol: 20 mg or less and 2 g or less of saturated fat per serving
    • low-calorie: 40 calories or less per serving.

Synonyms for low include “little,” “few,” “low source of,” and “contains a small amount of.”

  • Lean and extra lean. These terms can be used to describe the fat content of meat, poultry, seafood, and game meats.
    • lean: less than 10 g fat, 4.5 g or less saturated fat, and less than 95 mg cholesterol per serving and per 100 g.
    • extra lean: less than 5 g fat, less than 2 g saturated fat, and less than 95 mg cholesterol per serving and per 100 g.
  • High. This term can be used if the food contains 20 percent or more of the Daily Value for a particular nutrient in a serving.
  • Good source. This term means that one serving of a food contains 10 to 19 percent of the Daily Value for a particular nutrient.
  • Reduced. This term means that a nutritionally altered product contains at least 25 percent less of a nutrient or of calories than the regular, or reference, product. However, a reduced claim can’t be made on a product if its reference food already meets the requirement for a “low” claim.
  • Less. This term means that a food, whether altered or not, contains 25 percent less of a nutrient or of calories than the reference food. For example, pretzels that have 25 percent less fat than potato chips could carry a “less” claim. “Fewer” is an acceptable synonym.
  • Light. This descriptor can mean two things:
    • First, that a nutritionally altered product contains one-third fewer calories or half the fat of the reference food. If the food derives 50 percent or more of its calories from fat, the reduction must be 50 percent of the fat.
    • Second, that the sodium content of a low-calorie, low-fat food has been reduced by 50 percent. In addition, “light in sodium” may be used on food in which the sodium content has been reduced by at least 50 percent.

    The term “light” still can be used to describe such properties as texture and color, as long as the label explains the intent–for example, “light brown sugar” and “light and fluffy.”

  • More. This term means that a serving of food, whether altered or not, contains a nutrient that is at least 10 percent of the Daily Value more than the reference food. The 10 percent of Daily Value also applies to “fortified,” “enriched” and “added” “extra and plus” claims, but in those cases, the food must be altered.

Alternative spelling of these descriptive terms and their synonyms is allowed–for example, “hi” and “lo”–as long as the alternatives are not misleading.


Mini Eggplant Pizzas Recipe

Friday, May 29th, 2009

Mini Eggplant Pizzas Recipe
*not mine!

17 Minutes to Prepare and Cook



1 eggplant – 3 inches in diameter, peeled and cut into 4 half-inch thick slices
4 teaspoons olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
1/4 cup pasta sauce
1/2 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese


Preheat the oven or toaster oven to 425 degrees F. Brush both sides of the eggplant with the oil and season with the salt and pepper. Arrange on a baking sheet and bake until browned and almost tender, 6 to 8 minutes, turning once. Spread 1 tablespoon of pasta sauce on each eggplant slice. Top with the shredded cheese. Bake until the cheese melts, 3 to 5 minutes. Serve hot.Number of Servings: 4
Nutrition Facts 


Mini Eggplant Pizzas 


  Serving Size: 1 serving 

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 119.1
  Total Fat 7.5 g
      Saturated Fat 2.4 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 0.6 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 3.5 g
  Cholesterol 7.5 mg
  Sodium 458.6 mg
  Potassium 297.9 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 8.9 g
      Dietary Fiber 3.2 g
      Sugars 0.0 g
  Protein 4.9 g
  Vitamin A 5.1 %
  Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
  Vitamin B-6 5.7 %
  Vitamin C 5.4 %
  Vitamin D 0.0 %
  Vitamin E 3.9 %
  Calcium 11.3 %
  Copper 4.2 %
  Folate 5.8 %
  Iron 2.9 %
  Magnesium 4.8 %
  Manganese 9.9 %
  Niacin 4.3 %
  Pantothenic Acid     3.4 %
  Phosphorus     3.1 %
  Riboflavin 2.7 %
  Selenium 0.6 %
  Thiamin 4.6 %
  Zinc 1.3 %
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.



Note:¬† reduce the sodium by skipping the salt, and use fresh tomatoes instead of sauce.¬† If you prefer the tomato sauce over a slice of tomato, place the tomato in a processor!¬† And I’ve found that swiss cheese is lower in salt than most mozarella slices.

Oven Barbeque Shrimp

Friday, May 29th, 2009

Oven Barbeque Shrimp



2 pounds fresh shrimp, medium size, with shells ON (can have heads, too)
1 stick, unsalted butter
1/2 medium, chopped or sliced onion
1 clove garlic, chopped or sliced (not minced)
1 package, dry Zatarain’s crab boil (can add more or less to taste)



1. Spray 13X9 glass casserole dish with nonstick spray
2. Rinse thawed shrimp and place on bottom of casserole dish.
3. Sprinkle the dry crab boil over shrimp.
4. Sprinkle onion and garlic over shrimp.
5. Slice up stick of butter and sprinkle pieces across the top.
Bake in overn at 350 degrees, 35 – 40 minutes
Makes 8 4-oz servings.
You can sop up gravy with a piece of bread, or serve over rice.Number of Servings: 8
Nutrition Facts 


Oven Barbeque Shrimp 


  Serving Size: 1 serving 

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 225.7
  Total Fat 29.2 g
      Saturated Fat 7.2 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 0.4 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 3.3 g
  Cholesterol 196.1 mg
  Sodium 282.0 mg
  Potassium 26.8 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 1.3 g
      Dietary Fiber 0.3 g
      Sugars 0.0 g
  Protein 22.3 g
  Vitamin A 8.7 %
  Vitamin B-12 0.3 %
  Vitamin B-6 1.1 %
  Vitamin C 1.7 %
  Vitamin D 0.0 %
  Vitamin E 1.2 %
  Calcium 0.7 %
  Copper 0.6 %
  Folate 0.8 %
  Iron 0.3 %
  Magnesium 0.4 %
  Manganese 1.3 %
  Niacin 0.1 %
  Pantothenic Acid     0.3 %
  Phosphorus     0.8 %
  Riboflavin 0.5 %
  Selenium 0.4 %
  Thiamin 0.5 %
  Zinc 0.3 %
*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Pumpkin Apple Sauce (Low Sodium)

Friday, May 29th, 2009

Pumpkin Apple Sauce



1-3/4 cup canned pumpkin (small can)
2 cup unsweetened applesauce
1/2 cup apple juice
1/4 cup brown sugar, packed
2 tsp pumpkin pie spice
fat free whipped dessert topping, as garnish if desired



Mix all ingredients and simmer.
May be served warm or cold as a side or sweet treat!

Number of Servings: 4

Nutrition Facts 

Pumpkin Apple Sauce 


  Serving Size: 1 serving

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 155.4
  Total Fat 0.5 g
      Saturated Fat 0.2 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 0.0 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 0.1 g
  Cholesterol 0.0 mg
  Sodium 13.4 mg
  Potassium 369.3 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 39.4 g
      Dietary Fiber 4.7 g
      Sugars 19.4 g
  Protein 1.4 g
  Vitamin A 336.3 %
  Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
  Vitamin B-6 4.9 %
  Vitamin C 26.6 %
  Vitamin D 0.0 %
  Vitamin E 5.8 %
  Calcium 4.9 %
  Copper 9.5 %
  Folate 3.7 %
  Iron 11.5 %
  Magnesium 8.4 %
  Manganese 21.5 %
  Niacin 3.3 %
  Pantothenic Acid     5.6 %
  Phosphorus     5.0 %
  Riboflavin 5.3 %
  Selenium 1.5 %
  Thiamin 2.9 %
  Zinc 1.8 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.

Creamy Chocolate-Raspberry Mousse (Low Sodium)

Friday, May 29th, 2009

Creamy Chocolate-Raspberry Mousse
*not mine!



32 oz. of fat free yogurt, plain
4 tbsp unsweetened cocoa
4 packets Splenda
1 pint fresh raspberries


Add cocoa and your choice of artificial sweetener to yogurt and stir until well blended.
Gently fold in raspberries.
Served chilled.

Number of Servings: 8

Nutrition Facts 

Creamy Chocolate-Raspberry Mousse 


  Serving Size: 1 serving

Amount Per Serving
  Calories 91.1
  Total Fat 0.6 g
      Saturated Fat 0.2 g
      Polyunsaturated Fat 0.1 g
      Monounsaturated Fat 0.1 g
  Cholesterol 2.5 mg
  Sodium 95.6 mg
  Potassium 102.8 mg
  Total Carbohydrate 15.7 g
      Dietary Fiber 3.7 g
      Sugars 8.5 g
  Protein 7.4 g
  Vitamin A 1.1 %
  Vitamin B-12 0.0 %
  Vitamin B-6 1.3 %
  Vitamin C 19.9 %
  Vitamin D 0.0 %
  Vitamin E 1.0 %
  Calcium 23.7 %
  Copper 6.6 %
  Folate 2.9 %
  Iron 4.4 %
  Magnesium 5.2 %
  Manganese 25.7 %
  Niacin 2.1 %
  Pantothenic Acid     1.0 %
  Phosphorus     2.5 %
  Riboflavin 2.5 %
  Selenium 0.9 %
  Thiamin 1.0 %
  Zinc 2.5 %

*Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your daily values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.