F January 2011 ~ Critique of the Unique

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Welcome to Critique of the Unique

We are in the process of updating the format and will be making the big switch to a dot com address soon. Please be patient during our transition!

In the Kitchen with Amelia

Welcome Amelia to the Critique of the Unique! Join Amelia in the kitchen for great down-home cooking ranging from appetizers, to tasty main dishes all the way through to awesomely delicious desserts!!

"Winnie the Pooh" in Theaters this July

Return to the Hundred Acre Wood this July and revisit your old time favorite characters!

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Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Atlantic City Antiques and Collectors Show coming in March

The Atlantic City Antiques & Collectors Show

Hosted by:
JMK Shows and Events

When: Saturday, March 19 and Sunday, March 20

Time: 10 AM—6 PM EST on Saturday and 11 AM – 5 PM EST on Sunday.

Location: The Atlantic City Convention Center

Costs: Tickets are as follows-

  • 1-day Adult Tickets - $15
  • Weekend Passes - $25
  • Early Buying Tickets - $30
  • Groups of 10 or more eligible for group rates
  • Early buying for the show will be Saturday, March 19 from 9 AM—10 AM EST
Contact: Phone-973-927-2794 to order tickets or go to website below to order online.

Special exhibits include the Revisit the Empire through Fashion exhibit that features popular fashions and accessories from the 1920's, as well as appraisals by industry experts. These styles have been seen in such shows as "Boardwalk Empire", which is set in Atlantic City during the Prohibition era.

While you are there, be sure to enter to win a $500 shopping spree! A winner will be announced on both Saturday and Sunday. Giveaway events sponsored by MEARS.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Nordic Omega-3 Gummies Review and Giveaway

Product: Nordic Omega-3 Gummies
Made by: Nordic Naturals
Category: Health and Fitness, Children
Price: $21.95 for 60 count

Time to go fishing!! 

What do Arctic Cod, Sardines and Anchovies all have in common? Together they make up the Omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA found in the Nordic Omega-3 Gummies offered by Nordic Naturals. These delicious tangerine fish oil treats are designed and formulated for children aged 2 years of age or older. 

It has been claimed that fish oil is helpful in  reducing inflammation, arthritis, and symptoms of mental illness, as well as having a positive affect on the heart and decreasing the signs of aging. However, did you know that even children as young as two years old can benefit from taking fish oil on a daily basis? According to Nordic Naturals it can:
  • Support proper brain, eye and nervous system development*
  • Enhance learning, memory and focus*
  • Promote a healthy immune system*
*Note: These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. 

The Nordic Omega-3 Gummies comes in a 60 count container that is designed to be easy for your child to chew thoroughly.  They have a delicious tangerine taste...and I can say that, as I've actually tried it for myself and my kids actually asked for them! That's highly unusual! Plus, they are:
  • Gluten Free
  • Yeast Free
  • Milk Derivative Free
  • No artificial flavor, coloring or preservatives
The Nordic Omega-3 Gummies are designed to be delivered to you pure and fresh through Nordic Naturals patented "nitrogen processing" technique. This means fewer negative side effects such as burp-back. 

My experience: My children are hesitant to try anything new. Especially if it is declared "good for them", so it was a little bit of a challenge to get them to try the Nordic Gummies. So, of course, I was the first one to try. I put it in my mouth and started chewing. The gummies are actually very good and in fact, remind me of the little candy orange slices that my grandfather used to give to me as a child. I at least appreciated the memory it recalled! After I ate mine and had no ill-effect, my youngest was eager to try. The recommended dose is 2 gummies, so I put two into his hand and two into my daughter's hand. My son immediately popped both of his in his mouth and chewed. No one spit it out! That was a good sign!! Over the course of the next few weeks, they continued to take their fish oil gummies. I was looking for signs of proper brain development...like maybe they would magically begin cleaning their rooms without being told, or maybe they would remember to bring home their homework from school. Let me assure you, this is no miracle cure and your child will still find excuses for not taking out the trash!  For the most part, my kids simply ate these each day without incident. However, on about the second week of taking these, my daughter had her first complaint. I went to hand her the gummies and she says to me "I don't want to take mine, they give me the squirts". I wasn't certain if it was the gummies giving her problems or maybe it was something else that she had ate, so I let it go for a few days and she didn't take her gummies. Then, we reintroduced them back in to her daily routine, and a few days later, she had the squirts again. My son never had such a problem. He continued to take his until the bottle was empty. I don't know if the fish oils helped them in the way that it claims it could as I have no way in measuring this, but I do think it at least gave my children a better understanding of how to be proactive toward maintaining their physical and mental well-being. For that, I was thankful. Will we continue to take these? Since my daughter had the reaction she had, probably not, but only because I cannot afford to purchase more than one brand of supplement at a time. However, I like the fact that Nordic Naturals puts a great deal of research into the products they make, assuring the ingredients are safe for human consumption and that the fish used to produce the gummies are not an endangered species. For more information about the fish they utilize for the production of the gummies, please visit Omega Research

Where to Purchase: Nordic Naturals

WIN IT!! One lucky winner will win a 60 count bottle of Nordic Omega-3 Gummies from Nordic Naturals. Simply fill out the form below for your chance to win!

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Beat Sugar Addiction Now by Jacob Teitelbaum Review

Product: Beat Sugar Addiction Now
Author: Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D.
Co-Author: Chrystle Fiedler
Published by: Fair Winds Press
Category: Books, Health and Fitness
Price: $16.99

Are you a sugar addict? Do you have fatigue on a regular basis that you use coffee, caffeine and sugar laden foods to help you overcome? Do you get cranky and irritable when you are hungry? How about frequent migraines, or sinusitis?  Do you find yourself grabbing for the chocolate or Twinkies when your Aunt Flo arrives for her monthly visit? If so, you more than likely have some form of a sugar addiction.

In Jacob Teitelbaum's new book, Beat Sugar Addiction Now, he helps you to identify if you have a sugar addiction, what sort of addict you most likely are, and how to overcome your addiction. The book is simple to navigate and is very thoughtful laid out. In Part 1, you will determine what sort of sugar addict you are...ranging from Type 1-Type 4. He uses simply questionnaires that are designed to determine how sugar is interacting in your life.

Example: Type 1 Sugar Addict questionnaire asks-- Do you feel tired much of the time? Do you need coffee to get jump-started in the morning? Are you working more than forty hours a week? And so forth. Simply tally your score and determine if that is your type. If not, move on to the Type 2 questionnaire. It is important to note, that it is possible to have more than one type of sugar addiction, and many will find this to be the case.

After figuring out what type of sugar addict you are, the next step is to find a solution. This is by far my favorite part of the book. This is what it aims to do:

  • Eliminate the underlying problems that are driving your sugar addiction
  • Learn how to enjoy sweets in moderation
  • Eliminate the physical and psychological problems caused by sugar addiction
Notice that last one: Eliminate the PHYSICAL and PSYCHOLOGICAL problems caused by sugar addiction. Now that's something worth reading about. 

Dr. Teitelbaum does not try to trick you. Straight away he tells you that in order to beat the sugar addiction, you must eliminate it from your diet.  He goes on to tell you what to expect from your body during the sugar withdrawal process. He warns about the dangers of certain sugar substitutes and helps you to learn other methods of eating that will help you to overcome your dependency on sugar. 

By the time we are addicted to sugar, our bodies are already starting to show symptoms of how the sugar we have been eating over the course of many years, has effected our bodies. For this, we need to treat our bodies and attempt to reclaim them to their pre-sugar addiction status. For this, Dr. Teitelbaum suggests the SHINE protocol.
  • Sleep
  • Hormonal Support
  • Infections (treating)
  • Nutritional support
  • Exercise
He teaches the importance of sleep. Being a person who suffers from chronic insomnia, it was interesting to read how sugar cravings can result from poor sleep. What I like about Beat Sugar Addiction Now, is not only does Dr. Teitelbaum address the illness, but he also offers natural and herbal remedies to help heal you from the ailments the addiction has created. Also, he lists some of the common prescription medicines that might assist in this healing process as well. I truly like the fact that he covers both angles on this, and his information is current and thorough. It is here that he explains how sugar addictions can lead into other ailments such as chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, depression, diabetes, heart disease, hypothyroidism and so many more. This book is an essential tool if you are seriously wanting to remove the sugar addiction from your life so that you can feel better and enjoy a better quality of life. 

Beat Sugar Addiction Now even includes information about foods that raise your blood glucose, and further includes information about finding a practitioner that can address your health concerns. It is a complete book that is well thought out and organized so that you can use it as a workbook that will help you identify, treat and banish your sugar addiction once and for all! 

This is one of those books that you will keep in your library for future reference as it offers so much valuable information. I was highly impressed with the presentation and execution of this book and recommend to anyone who seriously wants to address the affect sugar has on their body.  I give it my seal of approval! 

About the Authors:

Jacob Teitelbaum, M.D. is one of the most frequently quoted integrative medical authorities in the world, and appears often as a guest on Oprah and Friends with  Dr. Mehmet Oz and on CNN, Fox News Channel and local news and talk shows  nationwide. He is the author of the best-selling From Fatigued to Fantastic! (3rd edition, Avery/Penguin Group USA), which has sold over 500,000 copies. As a leading expert and researcher in chronic fatigue and pain, Dr. Teitelbaum has helped thousands worldwide to regain their energy, overcome pain and start enjoying their lives again.  

Chrystle Fiedler is the author of over a hundred articles on  health topics for many publications including Woman's Day, Better  Homes  Gardens, Prevention, Natural Health, Medizine's Health Living,  The Health Monitor Network, Great Health, Vegetarian Times, Bottom Line/Women'  Health, Heart Healthy Living and Health magazine. Chrystle  also writes the "Good Nature" column for Remedy magazine  and is the author of The Complete Idiots Guide to Natural Remedies.    --excerpt from Fair Winds Press and Beat Sugar Addiction Now

Where to Purchase: Fair Winds Press, Amazon.com

Thursday, January 13, 2011

CInch! by Cynthia Sass Review and Giveaway

Product: Cinch!
Author: Cynthia Sass
Category: Health and Fitness, Books
Price: $25.99

Did your waistline expand after all that Thanksgiving turkey and Christmas ham? If so, then Cynthia Sass's book Cinch! will help you to get back into those favorite pair of jeans! Cinch! is the new book just released by Cynthia Sass, the coauthor of the Flat Belly Diet which became one of the New York Times bestselling books. Cinch! will help to conquer your cravings, drop those pounds and lose inches!

The Cinch! plan that Cynthia has devised is based on a twenty-five day plan. You have the option to start with the 5-Day 5-Food Fast Forward plan that helps to jump start your weight loss by eating a combination of  five delicious ingredients including spinach, raspberries, almonds, eggs and yogurt. I know it doesn't sound like much food, but don't worry, you will have plenty to eat as you will use these five ingredients to plan four great meals a day!  She gives you some basic rules:

  • Eat Like Clockwork
  • Think "Five Pieces Four Times a Day"
  • Make Flavor Your Focus
just remember:
  • Eat your first meal within one hour of waking up
  • Eat one of each meal per day, in any order, but be sure to space them out evenly throughout the course of the day
  • You can only eat the foods, beverages and seasonings listed 
The 5-Day Fast Forward is designed to help you lose up to seven pounds in one week, giving you the motivation and the confidence to embark on the journey to cinch that waistline! During this time, Cynthia encourages you to keep a diary that helps you to record the changes that are going to occur within your body,  such as if you are experiencing more energy, as well as other physical signs that the diet is having a positive effect. She also encourages you to record the emotional challenges that you might be facing at the start of this diet. Change is hard and so often we use food to help us quell our personal grievances and daily stressors, and this opportunity allows you to identify the emotions felt while you are omitting some of the foods that you have been accustomed to eating. 

After the 5-Day Fast Forward, then you are ready to begin the Cinch! plan. During this time, Cynthia shares with your the best choices for foods to eat, beverages to drink and spices to use to help you on your journey toward losing the pounds. She gives you great clues toward learning portion sizes at a glance, such as:
  • 1 cup = a baseball
  • 1/4 cup = a golf ball
  • 3 ounces = a deck of cards
  • 1 tablespoon = your thumb, from where it bends to the tip
These are quick and easy tricks to help you identify proper portion sizes! She urges you to use organic foods whenever possible, but gives the okay to substitute non-organic food selections if you are not able to find organic in your area. In Cinch!, you will find out why processed foods are not healthy, the role digestion plays in your health and foods that are actually considered "super foods" as they help to increase your metabolism, which in turn helps you lose weight even faster!

My thoughts: This book is good start for someone wanting to make a lifestyle change, as often starting a diet is the hardest thing. However, I found the book a little hard to navigate as it seemed as if the chapters jumped around too much and the organization was not the best. Cynthia Sass does have a lot of information to anyone who has never dieted prior, but I don't feel there is enough new information in her book for anyone who has been in a dieting situation in the past. The foods for the plan do not fit my tastes, and even though some substitutions are allowed, I don't feel I could stick with the choices available. I am not crazy about nuts, raspberries, or eggs and only eat them in slight moderation. Therefore, the quick 5-Day Fast Forward would not be an option for me. There were plenty of recipes included for the month long plan  that actually sounded good....such as the Citrus Salmon Salad, the Mediterranean Shrimp Pizza, and the Chilled Lentil and Wild Rice Salad. Therefore, some of the combinations are feasible and even desirable to eat, and I especially loved that she encourages you to eat chocolate everyday!!  The concept is that denying yourself of a little guilty pleasure will make you more apt to abandon your diet, so allowing yourself a portion controlled dessert is the best way to keep the motivation to maintain the diet. 

What I loved about the book is that Cynthia provides grocery lists to make shopping for the recipes a cinch! It does allow you to remove the unhealthy options from your diet, which in return will allow your body to detox from the unhealthy diet you have been used to, and for this reason alone, this book could help prepare yourself toward a healthier eating plan.  I like that it included options for vegetarians and vegans as well. It's a great starting point, and if you like the main ingredient types listed in the plan, then you will indeed see some result from this diet, especially if you combine it with proper rest and exercise. 

Where to Purchase: Amazon.com

I was able to do this review due to my membership with the One2One Network.

WIN A COPY!!! One lucky winner will receive a copy of Cinch! for themselves. Simply fill out the form below for a chance to win. Please fill the form out only once and include the information for the bonus entries altogether on one form. 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

52 Week Project: Week Two

The 52 Week Project: Week Two photo is now posted at my personal blog, Confessions of an Ordinary Woman. Head on over and have a look and link me to your 52 Week Project photos!!


Friday, January 7, 2011

Powermat Winner!!!!!

I know you all have been awaiting with anticipation to see who the winner of the PowerMat Giveaway is....so I won't make you wait any longer.

The Winner of the Powermat is....... (drum roll)


leanne_mac said...108

I'm a email subscriber

Winner will be notified by email and will have five business days to respond!  Thanks so much for everyone who joined in on the Holiday Gift Guide!!! Stay tuned in the month of January for Health and Fitness giveaways!!!


Sunday, January 2, 2011

52 Week Project

There has been a lot of buzz on the internet lately about the "52 Week Project" where the goal is to take a portrait a week for an entire year. It was first intended to be for self-portraits, but any sort of portrait will do. I thought I'd give it a try and have opted to do self-portraits as I rarely take any decent photos of myself. Whenever I do take pictures of myself, I hate the way they turn out (mostly because I hate the way my body looks), but I think it will start my creative juices flowing, which is one of my main goals for 2011.

I will post these weekly photos to my new blog, Confessions of an Ordinary Woman, as I think it fits more in tune with the structure of that particular blog, and it gives me reason to go there every week. Perhaps, by going there every week, I'll be motivated to keep writing this year too. I've done little poetry writing in the last few years and it is something I desperately want to start again.

So, here's the photo for this week. If you would like to follow me on this 52 Week journey, or if you would like to link up your own "52 Week Project" photos, then feel free to come on over and join the fun!

"What Weighs Me Down"...Week 1/52



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