Saturday, October 4, 2008

Aromatherapy – More Than Just Good Smell

Aromatherapy is a form of alternative healing that makes use of volatile plant oils, referred to as essential oils, and other aromatic compounds obtained from plants for the overall physical and psychological well-being of a person.

The history of aromatherapy dates back to more than 3500 years before Christ’s birth, to a time when the use of aromatics was recorded for the first ever instance in human history. The truth is that the history of aromatherapy is deeply linked with the progress of aromatic medicine, which in its initial stages was typically combined with religion, mysticism and magic.

In India, around 2000 BC, various writings mention the role of ‘perfumers’ and ‘incense sellers’. The word ‘aromatherapy’ was used for the first time in the 1920s by French chemist Rene-Maurice-Gattefosse, who dedicated his life to researching on the discipline of aromatherapy.

The theory to explain the healing effects of aromatherapy offers two mechanisms- the influence of aroma on the brain, on the limbic system through the olfactory system in particular, and the direct pharmacological effects these essential oils have on the body.

Though the efficacy of aromatherapy as a form of healing has not yet been proven, but some clinical studies have shown encouraging results.

An overview of the materials frequently employed in aromatherapy is given below:

•Essential oils: These are fragrant oils extracted from plants mainly through steam distillation (e.g. eucalyptus oil).

•Absolutes: These are also fragrant oils, but extracted from flowers or delicate plant tissues through solvent extraction (e.g. rose absolute).

•Phytoncides: These are volatile organic compounds obtained from plants that destroy microbes.

•Hydrosols: These are aqueous by-products of distillation (e.g. rosewater). Many herbs are used to make herbal distillates. They have culinary, medicinal as well as skin care uses.

•Infusions: They are aqueous extracts of various plant materials (e.g. infusion of chamomile)

•Carrier oils: These are oily plant based triacylglycerides used to dilute essential oils for use on the skin (e.g. sweet almond oil) so as to avoid irritation.

Like any other form of healing, aromatherapy too has its uses and benefits. It doesn’t just smell good but provides immense relaxation and stress relief. It boosts the immune, respiratory and circulatory systems which help in mood enhancement and overall well being.

Essential oils, which form the heart of aromatherapy, pose some potential concerns as well. Because they are highly concentrated, they can cause skin irritation if used directly. They could also raise some health issues for pregnant and lactating women.

But on the whole, one can say that the positive effects of aromatherapy far outnumber the negative ones. It is an alternative to medicine that entails systematic use of organic essences in holistic treatments for enhancing general vitality and ensuring prevention of disease.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Antique Silver Top Crystal Perfume Scent Bottle

This is a beautiful Victorian silver metal and crystal glass perfume bottle. It is 6" tall, 2 1/2" wide.

The actual bottle is silver metal covered with an ornate raised design of flowers, shells, and decorative foliate elements. The cap is similar and, attached with chain to the cap, is a simple metal top where, uncovered, the wick comes through.

This is a true scent bottle! You open the top for the perfume to slowly permeate the room and simply cover the wick with the metal top if you've had enough scent! The bottom has a hand-etched crystal stem on a crystal pedestal base, covered with a band of ornate silver metal. Gosh, the fine details all over this bottle are amazing! The bottom of this silver band is stamped but I can't read it.

The metal is probably silver plated. I didn't polish it as some people like that old tarnished look.

This bottle and the glass pedestal are in excellent condition. It has no chips or cracks and all hardware is complete! ID=ot1


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Natural remedies for anxiety

Overcome by feelings of anxiety and tension? Try the natural route to regain control and bring back a balanced outlook.

Do you feel apprehensive, panicky or experience feelings of dread and impending doom? If so, you could be suffering from an anxiety disorder - and you are not alone. Around 19 million people have an anxiety disorder in the UK. Check out the most popular natural ways of combating anxiety.

A number of aromatherapy essential oils are used to help treat anxiety, most of which have a sedative effect. These include: benzoin, bergamot, chamomile, clary sage, geranium, jasmine, lavender, melissa, neroli and sandalwood (NB, seek advice before using any oils if you are pregnant).

Try adding five drops of an essential oil to a tablespoon of carrier oil (eg almond or avocado) and add to a comfortably hot bath once the taps are turned off. Close the bathroom door to keep in the vapours and soak for 15–20 minutes by candlelight. Afterwards add two or three drops of lavender oil to a tissue and tuck near your pillow to help you sleep.

This natural therapy can help many emotional problems, including anxiety. It's best to consult a qualified homeopath to obtain the right remedy for your constitutional type. Some of the homeopathic remedies you could use include:

Lycopodium - for anxiety with a lack of confidence

Arsenicum album – for anxiety with restlessness

Phosphorus – for anxiety relieved by reassurance

Calcaria carbonica – for anxiety with fear of insanity

A typical dose is to take the 6c strength every two hours for up to 10 doses.

Flower remedies

Flower remedies are flower essences preserved in brandy. Place a few drops in a glass of water and sip slowly until feelings of anxiety pass. Several of the 38 Bach Flower Remedies are helpful for anxiety, including:

Cherry plum (Prunus cerasifera) for fear of losing control, uncontrollable rages, tempers, impulses, fear of causing harm to oneself or others

Aspen (Populus tremula) for vague fears and anxieties of unknown origin, sense of foreboding, apprehension or impending doom

White chestnut (Aesculus hippocastanum) for persistent, unwanted thoughts, mental arguments, preoccupation with worry

Some remedies are made by combining different flower essences to help more complex emotional states, such as Bach Rescue Remedy (containing Rock rose, Impatiens, Clematis, Star of Bethlehem and Cherry plum) for use in times of crisis such as when anxiety leads to a panic attack.

Herbal supplements

Valerian is one of the most calming herbs available and can help to relieve anxiety and muscle tension, and promote calmness. It is often used together with other calming herbs such as lemon balm and hops to ease nervous anxiety, insomnia and to help avoid a panic attack. If anxiety is associated with depression, St John's Wort will help to lift a low mood, but seek advice if you are taking any prescribed medications to check there are no interactions. Chamomile tea also has a useful calming action.

Hypnotherapy helps overcome anxiety by promoting relaxation and improved self-esteem. It also helps you change your thoughts and behaviour from negative patterns to those that are more positive. You can also learn self hypnosis to continue working on your improvements on your own.

Monday, September 8, 2008

Finest Egyptian Perfume Bottles

Large Beautiful Egyptian Perfume Bottles Handmade Mouth Blown Glass.

Not only they are the largest but also the most beautiful and the finest quality.

Others focus on the low price of their bottles, but never mention Craftsmanship Beauty & Colors quality Please inspect the quality, colors, and sizes of our bottles Size approx 5 to 10 inches. Hand crafted with natural and metallic colors made from plants and gold applied and plated to the melting glass.

Every piece of this fine quality collection is a Mouth Blown masterpiece: Hand-Etched, Hand-Painted, made of pure Pyrex Glass, and created by professional artisans.

As with all handmade goods no 2 pieces are similar, the shapes and colors may differ slightly at the time of shipping.

Aromatherapy for relaxation

Make a little space in your day to relax with soothing essential oils away from the stresses and strains of your hectic schedule.

Aromatherapy essential oils have powerful effects on your moods, as the part of the brain that detects smell messages from the nose (olfactory bulbs) is closely linked with your emotional centre in a part of the brain called the limbic system. Oils are also absorbed from the skin into the circulation and can have powerful effects on the body. Even Hippocrates, the Greek father of medicine, recommended the use of aromatic essential oils for their relaxing properties.

Some essential oils are so relaxing that they help to promote sleep, especially geranium, juniper, lavender, neroli, lemongrass, sandalwood and ylang ylang. Try sprinkling a few drops of your chosen oil(s) on a cotton-wool pad or hanky and tucking it under your pillow. Alternatively, scent your bedroom with an oil using a burner. However, the oils need to be varied every four or five days to maintain their beneficial effect, as your body and brain start to adapt to them.

Ways to use them effectively
Aromatherapy essential oils may be inhaled, massaged into the skin, added to bath water, or heated in a variety of ways to perfume the atmosphere. Oils that come into contact with skin should always be diluted with a carrier oil (eg, almond, avocado, jojoba, sunflower, wheatgerm oils). Dilution is important, as oils that are too concentrated may have an adverse effect or cause skin irritation.
Where possible, use natural rather than synthetic essential oils, as these have a greater therapeutic benefit. Similarly, 100% pure essential oils are preferable, as they are not mixed with alcohol or other additives.

Essential oils that help to relax the body and mind to relieve stress include:
Chamomile roman
Clary sage
Ylang ylang

When making up a blend, choose oils whose aromas you like and experiment with different quantities of each. If a blend isn't quite to your liking, add more drops of one or more of the oils – or introduce another that you feel is missing. Keep a note of the total number of drops used so that you can ensure it is correctly diluted by adding extra carrier oil. Altogether, every five drops of essential oil should be balanced with 10ml of carrier oil.

Enjoy an aromatic bath
Aromatherapy is wonderfully relaxing when used in the bath. Choose a single favourite sensual oil, or a blend of up to three. Add five drops of essential oil to a tablespoon (30ml) carrier oil (eg almond, avocado) and mix. Draw your bath so that it is comfortably hot, but don't add the aromatic oil mix until the taps are turned off. Close the bathroom door to keep in the vapours and soak for 15–20 minutes, preferably in candlelight.

After cleansing your body, you can also dip a wet sponge in the oil mix and use it to gently massage your whole body before rinsing. Lie back comfortably, and close your eyes. Allow the scent to fill your entire body and imagine it coursing through your veins, bringing relaxation and a renewed sense of energy.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

VINTAGE Gold Filigree Perfume Bottle

Beautiful gold intricate filigree ormolu perfume bottle standing over 9 inches tall. THIS IS A BEAUTIFUL PIECE WITH FULL BLOOM ROSES. THE TOP SCREWS OFF AND HAS A SMALL VIAL, I HAVE TAKEN SEVERAL PICTURES SO YOU CAN SEE THE FINE DETAIL. I guess this to be around 1920's - 30's. THIS ONE IS of Substantial weight and quality. ITS ABSOLUTELY LOVELY..ID=OT4

Fish oil supplements help heart disease patients

The products: All over the world -- Japan, the Arctic, Anaheim, wherever -- people who eat a lot of fish seem to enjoy unusual protection from heart disease. Not everyone can manage a plate of salmon or sashimi every night, but there's another option: fish oil capsules, the fatty extracts of anchovies, sardines or salmon poured into a package of gelatin.


Fish oil: A May 5 Health section article examining the benefits of fish oil supplements said that "the Food and Drug Administration considers fish oil to be a nutritional supplement, not a medication." Lovaza, available by prescription, contains high concentrations of fish oil omega-3 fatty acids and is FDA-approved for treatment of people with very high blood triglyceride levels (more than 500 milligrams per deciliter).

Fish oil is loaded with two omega-3 fatty acids, docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). Studies in humans and animals suggest that these nutrients can help prevent blood clots, lower blood pressure and encourage healthy heart rhythms. Heart patients in Europe often receive prescriptions for fish oil capsules along with their beta blockers and blood thinners. In the U.S., the Food and Drug Administration considers fish oil to be a nutritional supplement, not a medication, but many Americans still buy the capsules in hopes of prescription-strength benefits.

Fish oil capsules are available pretty much anywhere vitamins are sold. Some typical examples: Nature Made sells 100 2.5-gram capsules for about $10. Each capsule contains about 650 milligrams of DHA and EPA combined. Ten dollars will also buy 100 capsules of Puritan's Pride fish oil, which contains about 360 milligrams of DHA and EPA per capsule. Don't like the fishy flavor? Natrol sells fish oil capsules laced with lemon oil to take the edge off. Pushing that concept to its outer limits, a company called GO3 sells chewable, strawberry-flavored fish oil tablets for kids.

The claims: There's an unwritten rule in supplement advertising: Products with the most scientific merit tend to make the most low-key claims. Accordingly, labels and websites for fish oil products generally don't promise miracle cures. The label for Nature Made fish oil simply states that "consumption of omega-3 fatty acids may reduce the risk of coronary heart disease." Using slightly bolder terms, the Natrol packaging says fish oil will "support optimal health, including cardiovascular health."

The bottom line: Eating fish a couple of times a week is undoubtedly a healthful habit, says Dr. Thomas Pfeffer, a vascular surgeon at Kaiser Permanente Hospital in Los Angeles and the president of the L.A. chapter of the American Heart Assn. But that doesn't mean everybody should be stocking up on fish oil capsules, he adds. "It's always better to get nutrients from whole foods," he says.

According to Pfeffer, fish oil supplements have "no proven benefits" for people who don't already have heart disease, which leaves out the great majority of Americans. (Some experts believe that fish oil might ease rheumatoid arthritis, depression and certain skin problems, but the verdicts aren't in yet.)

For people recovering from a heart attack, fish oil capsules just might have the power to save lives. A 2002 Italian study of more than 11,000 heart attack survivors found that taking one capsule containing 850 milligrams of DHA and EPA each day cut the risk of death in the next three months by 40%. After four months, patients taking the fish oil were also 50% less likely to die suddenly, a clear sign that the supplements helped prevent dangerous arrhythmias.

A 2007 Japanese study of more than 18,000 patients with high cholesterol found that adding 1.8 grams of EPA each day to standard treatment with statin medications reduced the five-year risk of heart attacks, bypass surgery and other cardiac "events" by about 20%.

The American Heart Assn. officially encourages people who have heart disease to eat at least 1 gram of DHA and EPA combined each day, about what you'd get from 2 ounces of Atlantic salmon. Although the AHA says fatty fish is the best source of DHA and EPA, it also says patients can take fish oil capsules with their doctor's OK.

Patients with high triglycerides -- a type of fat found in the blood -- are the only ones who get a clear-cut recommendation to take fish oil capsules. For these patients, the American Heart Assn. suggests 2 to 4 grams of DHA and EPA each day.

Dr. Stuart Connolly, director of cardiology at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, says there's a reason why neither the FDA nor Health Canada, that country's national health system, considers fish oil to be a pharmaceutical product. By any measure, he says, fish oil isn't likely to be as helpful as prescription medications.

But fish oil supplements are considered safe in recommended doses, and Connolly says he's "cautiously optimistic" that the supplements could be a healthful addition to medical treatment for heart disease.

Pfeffer says heart patients who want to try fish oil should probably stick with gelatin capsules containing about 1 gram of DHA and EPA combined per day.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Champagne EDT by Yves Saint Laurent 3.3 fl oz

This rare collector’s bottle of Champagne by Yves Saint Laurent is a limited item since the company no longer produces it under this name. Instead, you will now find it sold under the re-named Yvresse to avoid the copyright dispute for the original name Champagne by Caron.

"From Parisian couturier Yves Saint Laurent comes Champagne, a sparkling concoction of fruits and florals. Champagne is corked in a bubbly flacon accented by hammered gold and corkwire. Hints of nectarine, mint, and vetiver enhance the vivid bouquet. The Yves Saint Laurent company reports that a French court ruled that Champagne is a name reserved for wine and can't be used for perfume. As a result, the fragrance is now marketed under the name Yvresse in Europe." No Box. ID=CS2

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Combat office stress with aromatherapy

If you wake up in the morning feeling just as tired as you did last night or if the pitter patter of raindrops fail to lift your flagging spirits chances are that you are affected with work-related stress more deeply than you think.

Your daily dose of ‘perk-me-up’ pill doesn’t seem to be working anymore, meditation and yoga are too demanding for your office. Are you fighting a losing battle? No, say experts. For those looking for a convenient and faster way of combating stress at the work place, there is Aromatherapy. Let’s find what this science of smell can do for you...

“Aroma therapy is a holistic treatment that works as a natural stress buster that can be easily fused into your work environment with immediate positive benefits for conditions like lack of concentration, depression, agitation and of course stress,” says Dr. Naresh Arora, Aromatherapist, Chase Aroma Therapy.

Essential oils that form the basis of this treatment are derived from flowers and have calming effects on the central nervous system, thereby relieving you of stress and increasing concentration levels. Some of the aroma oils that work best to relieve office stress include the following:

Lavender Oil: It is a stress buster that not just wards off tension but also relieves you of mental exhaustion and agitation arising out of office nuances. It also improves concentration.

How to use: It can be used in a diffuser, which heats the oil and allow its molecules to harmonise with the atmosphere to keep you relieved.

If a diffuser is not available, then put just a drop or two of lavender oil on a cotton bud or tissue paper and place it near your work station. Soon you’ll find the fragrance working for you. Not just this, studies show that scenting your office with Lavender essential oil can even reduce computer errors by at least 25 per cent.

Quantity: 1-2 drops

Neroli Oil: This oil is best to calm a fatigued mind. It frees you of sluggishness and mental strain by improving your sleep.

How to use: The best time to use Neroli oil is the moment you lie on your bed. Just put a drop of the oil on your pillow and let it work to give you a soothing sleep.

Quantity : Less than 1 drop

Geranium oil: This flower based oil works to keep a tab on crisis, confusion and anxiety. It tranquilises your state of mind and boosts the immune system.

How to use: The best way to use geranium oil is to create your own spa with it. Add it in a tub full of lukewarm water and soak yourself in it for 20-30 minutes before going to bed.

Quantity: 3-4 drops in bath tub.

Basil oil: This oil is ideal to fight the effects of negativity, burn-out and intellectual fatigue. A regular use ensures better concentration, clarity of thoughts and a bounce of enthusiasm to keep you going at work.

How to use: Take a bowl of water and put less than a drop of Basil oil in it. Now, soak a towel in it and then use it to wipe off your body, specially the exposed parts of your body before going to sleep.

Alternately, you can also put one tenth of a drop of this oil behind your ear and feel the fragrance giving you a relaxing effect.

Fennel Sweet Oil: If you are experiencing a lack of creativity or feeling bogged down by over work, then fennel sweet oil is for you. This one will remove all kinds of mental blockage, clear the mind and motivates you to work with a fresh mind.

How to use: Again, it can be used in a diffuser placed in the room or on a cotton bud.

Quantity: 1-2 drops

Rosemary oil: Loss of memory, lethargy and strain can be treated with rosemary oil. It gives you energy, and gives a boost to the immune system.

How to use: It can be used in a bath or in a diffuser.

Apart from these, if you have any other favourite essential oil, you can use it in the following ways in your office:

1. A few drops of oil on the cardboard tube inside a roll of toilet paper works well to ensure a nice smelling bathroom.

2. Want to spread the scent around? Simply keep cotton ball dipped in essential oil between your business card box and there - you have scented cards!

Word of caution: The aroma oils are known to the world as the most refined form of medication, as mere smell of these can have positive effects on a patient. Keeping in mind their effectiveness, here comes a warning from Dr. Arora, from Chase Aroma Therapy “Taking care of the quantity is extremely important. If the right quantity can help you relieving the stress, an excess of a particular oil can affect BP levels - the person can go into depression, or can feel dizzy and can even faint at times. Less usage of these oils has a remedial effect while excess can be poisonous.”

Aromatherapy has been touted as an excellent stress buster and a productivity and efficiency booster world over. The combinations are vast and the possibilities are only limited to your let it do wonders!

Antique Czech Perfume Bottle - Czech Perfume - ART DECO

This is an OLD Czech perfume bottle. Standing 5 3/4" tall and the widest base span diagonally is almost 3". The perfume has a 5 and 6-sided diamond/geometric design with a streamlined/linear stopper. The stopper had a dauber at one time that has since broken off. The bottle is faintly marked on the bottom exactly as follows: Made in (on top) (then) Czecho (over) slovakia. The condition is very good for a vintage piece of glass. ID=CZ10

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Skin Care: Scar-free Healing Shown With Gene Suppression

New research from the University of Bristol shows that by suppressing one of the genes that normally switches on in wound cells, wounds can heal faster and reduce scarring. This has major implications not just for wound victims but also for people who suffer organ tissue damage through illness or abdominal surgery.

When skin is damaged a blood clot forms and cells underneath the wound start to repair the damage, leading to scarring. Scarring is a natural part of tissue repair and is most obvious where skin has healed after a cut or burn. It ranges from trivial (a grazed knee) to chronic (diabetic leg ulcers) and is not limited to the skin. All tissues scar as they repair; for example, alcohol-induced liver damage leads to fibrosis and liver failure, and after most abdominal surgeries scars can often lead to major complications.

Tissue damage triggers an inflammatory response by white cells to protect skin from infection by killing microbes. The same white cells guide the production of layers of collagen. These layers of collagen help the wound heal but they stand out from the surrounding skin and result in scarring. Research by Professor Paul Martin and colleagues at the University of Bristol shows that osteopontin (OPN) is one of the genes that triggers scarring and that applying a gel, which suppresses OPN to the wound, can accelerate healing and reduces scarring. It does this in part by increasing the regeneration of blood vessels around the wound and speeding up tissue reconstruction.

Speaking of the discovery, Professor Martin said: ‘White blood cells (macrophages), and the chemical signals (PDGF) delivered to the wound cells, and osteopontin itself are now all clear targets for developing medicines to improve healing of skin wounds and other organs where fibrotic tissue repair can be debilitating. We hope that it won’t be too long before such therapies are available in the clinic. Indeed, the technique for suppressing OPN to reduce scarring is currently being licensed and patented by a Biotech company specializing in wound-healing therapies.’

Earlier research by Professor Martin’s lab and others has shown that embryos of many species, including humans, heal wounds without leaving a scar. Now it looks like the same may be true for adults.

The findings will be published by the Journal of Experimental Medicine on 26 January in a paper entitled ‘Molecular mechanisms linking wound inflammation and fibrosis: knockdown of osteopontin leads to rapid repair and reduced scarring’. The paper is currently available online


This is a very pretty little green Czech perfume bottle with filigree in the front and around the neck of the bottle. The filigree is encrusted with orange and green stones. The design cut into the bottle is geometric. There are no markings on the bottle. It measures 2 7/8in. tall, including the stopper, and 2in. across the bottom. There is a small dauber present. ID=CZ5

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

European Birds Flock To Warming Britain, While Some Northern Species Not Faring As Well

Researchers at Durham, the RSPB and Cambridge University have found that birds such as the Cirl Bunting and Dartford Warbler are becoming more common across a wide range of habitats in Britain as temperatures rise.

Unfortunately, some northern species, such as the Fieldfare and Redwing, are not faring quite so well and their numbers are falling.

Researchers looked at twenty-five year population trends of 42 bird species in relation to changes in climatic suitability simulated using climatic envelope models.

Professor Brian Huntley from The Institute of Ecosystem Science at Durham University says: "The results are what we expected to find given the changes in climate over the last 20 years.

"Because the UK is in the middle Latitudes of Europe, we expected that recent climatic warming would favour species with ranges located in the south of Europe and adversely affect northern species."

Bird spotters may have to refer to new books to identify some of the new visitors to our shores but Britons who've visited the Mediterranean region may recognise the increasing presence of the famously explosive song of Cetti's Warbler.

Northern species that are under threat also include the Slavonian Grebe, a bird whose range extends at its southern margins to Scotland. The Fieldfare and Redwing - birds that are familiar as winter visitors to bird tables and gardens in the north-east but that breed only locally in parts of Scotland - are also suffering a downturn in numbers.

The models used to explore these trends are the same models that have been used to predict long term changes in all bird species across Europe; Durham's ornithological expert Brian Huntley has compiled 'A Climatic Atlas of European Breeding Birds' to map potential changes in distribution of all of the continent's regularly occurring nesting birds. His work shows the need for urgent action on climatic change to avoid calamitous impacts on birds.

The new work has important implications for predicting future trends. Researchers can now look at what has happened in the past to help predict the future species and numbers of birds in Britain.

Southern birds flourishing in the warmer weather:
Little egret
Cetti's warbler
Cirl bunting
Dartford warbler

Northern birds dwindling in the warmer weather:
Temminck's stint
Purple sandpiper
Shore lark
Snowy owl

Monday, August 11, 2008



Get Inspired by Bold and Natural Flavors

Peruse the dishes featured in America's top restaurants and epicurean magazines and it's easy to see that culinary trends this year are focusing on refreshingly bold flavors and natural ways to sweeten dishes. This movement has motivated home chefs to experiment in the kitchen with innovative ways to enhance the flavor and nutrition of their favorite recipes.

Recently, the Florida Department of Citrus called upon amateur chefs to put their culinary creativity to the test in the "Back to the Grove" recipe contest for a chance to win a grand prize trip to the Sunshine State. Citrus enthusiasts from across the country submitted original recipes containing at least one 8-ounce serving of 100 percent Florida orange juice, which contributes almost 25 percent of the UDSA daily recommended amount of fruit and vegetables when consumed in a single serving. The bold and sweet taste of Florida orange juice makes it an ideal ingredient to perk up everyday recipes by providing a splash of flavor to dishes from breakfast to dessert.

Contest winner Kelly Boe was inspired by the zesty flavor of citrus and Florida-style cuisine. Her Orange Couscous with Cinnamon Vinaigrette earned top honors from a panel of expert judges at the highly acclaimed Johnson and Wales College of Culinary Arts for taking a fresh approach to the common side dish.

Those looking to bring sunshine into their kitchen can easily recreate Boe's contest-winning recipe:

Orange Couscous with Cinnamon Vinaigrette

Makes 4 servings


1 cup 100 percent Florida orange juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup couscous
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/2 cup chopped macadamia nuts
1/2 cup chopped green onion


In a saucepan, bring orange juice and salt to a boil. Add couscous; stir. Remove saucepan from heat and cover; let stand 5 minutes. Remove lid and fluff with a fork. Place couscous in medium mixing bowl and set aside.

Meanwhile, in small mixing bowl, whisk together olive oil, white wine vinegar and cinnamon until emulsified. Set aside.

Add golden raisins, macadamia nuts and green onion to couscous.
Pour vinaigrette over couscous mixture. Stir gently with a wooden spoon until combined. Serve at room temperature.

To view more Florida-inspired recipes and get tips for cooking with orange juice, visit

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Three Chelsea porcelain scent bottles

Chelsea factory, London, England, 1750s

The Chelsea porcelain factory opened in the mid-1740s. It was run by Nicholas Sprimont (about 1716-71), a Flemish Huguenot who had originally worked as a silversmith. Sprimont employed a number of talented modellers and decorators to produce work of a superb standard.

The factory produced decorative pieces for the luxury market, often copying designs from factories at Meissen in Germany or from Vincennes and Sèvres in France. These included miniature items, called 'toys' at the time, such as these scent-bottles, as well as seals, thimble cases, snuff boxes and other expensive trifles. Many have amorous or flirtatious inscriptions on them and were often bought as gifts.

The scent bottles are made of soft-paste porcelain, painted in overglaze colours and gilt, with gold mounts. One is decorated with playful commedia dell'arte figures: the Doctor, Clown and Harlequin, who hides in a kennel. The upper part of the bottle takes the form of a dovecote and a dove acts as the stopper. The base is inscribed 'stratageme d'amour' (subterfuge of love). The second bottle shows two doves touching bills and is inscribed 'imite nous' (imitate us). The third has two cupids lighting a stove and is inscribed 'mon feu durera toujours' (my fire will last forever).

R. L. Hobson, Catalogue of the Collection of (London, British Museum, 1905)

A. Dawson, Eighteenth-century English Por (London, 1987)

Height: 9.100 cm (128)
Height: 9.100 cm (128)
Height: 9.100 cm (128)

Gift of Sir Augustus Wollaston Franks

M&ME 1887,3-7,128, 141, 108

Prehistory and Europe

Sea horse

A wild horse finds a way recently to stay cool as it swims in the waters off Shackleford Banks. (Cheryl Burke photo)

Saturday, August 9, 2008

German Figural Crown Top Pheasant Perfume Bottle Old

This antique, novelty porcelain perfume bottle is shaped like a colorful pheasant. He is painted on the front and signed Germany 3639 on the reverse. This retains it's original brass crowntop stopper and stands 3 3/4" tall. ID=CWNTOP6

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Essential solutions: Oils get rid of pests and ills


For the Pocono Record

August 05, 2008

Essential oils can help reduce stress, get rid of pests, help cure colds and maybe even improve your love life.

Use of these oils is becoming popular in places such as spas or via massage therapists and among consumers who use them at home.

Essential oils are extracted from plants, and each fragrance has its own unique use.

Susan Spannagel, massage therapist of Harp Strings-Wellness Studio of Saylorsburg, said, "I incorporate a little aromatherapy in my practice, especially popular ones like lavender and eucalyptus.

"Each fragrance has a property all its own. They promote different things in the body both physically and psychologically."

Michele VanSise, Earthlight Natural Foods sales associate in Stroudsburg, said, "For anxiety relief, use patchouli, lavender or chamomile."

She added, "We also have love potions that stimulate love with ylang ylang, patchouli, lemon and cardamom."

Spannagel recommends lavender to relax you, eucalyptus to open up the respiratory system and help sinuses, and lemon grass to help with infectious illness. To battle depression, a more pungent fragrance, such as rosemary, is used to stimulate the mind.

"I know that they are helpful from personal experience," Spannagel said. "When I worked in New York, I went in an herb store in Chinatown ... (the owner) put his finger in eucalyptus and just touched my forehead. I was all stuffed up before, but as soon as I took my first breath everything just opened right up. I remembered that as I got older and studied massage."

Other essential oils such as peppermint and citronella can get rid of insects and rats, said VanSise.

Oils can be used in lotions, sprays, candles, potpourri bags or as an oil after being diluted. Both VanSise and Spannagel advise never using essential oils directly on the skin.

"Usually you never put an essential oil as it is very concentrated directly on the skin. It needs to be added to either a cream or lotion before you apply it," Spannagel said.

And it is best to avoid ingesting essential oils unless you want to pay a visit to the emergency room.

"Some you don't want to ingest like citronella. You can also have an allergic reaction to anything," VanSise said.

The smell from these oils may also bring up various memories. According to Spannagel, the part of the brain that controls smell, the olfactory nerves, is directly connected to the area of the brain that brings back memories, the limbic system.

"They are very interconnected. That's why many times an aroma will bring up a memory in the past," Spannagel said. "If you smell something cooking you might remember your grandma in the kitchen."

Essential oils range in price depending on what kind you buy. For instance, some may cost as little as $4, while others may be $40.

"They're multi-purpose. They're amazing, I'd recommend them to anybody," VanSise said.


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