Solar-Powered Globe String Lights for Outdoor Entertaining

Solar-Powered Globe String Lights for Outdoor Entertaining

They are back!!!! Two years ago, we ordered five sets of these solar-powered globe string lights to criss-cross our patio. We were hosting Thanksgiving and the solar powered patio lights would add a canopy effect plus when combined with lots of candles, provide enough light even after sunset. We could not have been more pleased with the entire look and decided to keep the lights up year round.

The fact that these globe string lights are solar-powered was absolutely essential to my purchase decision making process. We do not have an outdoor outlet nearby so we would have had to either spend lots of money on an electrician or run the lights under the french doors into the living room. Neither of those solutions were acceptable. Instead, we were able to attach the lights' solar panels to the roof. I won't lie, you can see them but they are not a distraction or an eyesore.  All was good.

That is until about a month ago when a wind storm hit the patio. The tape I used to attach the lights to the wire infrastructure I had created, was old and cracked and basically gave out. The lights fell and that was that. Ever since, I have been searching for a comparable product. After weeks and weeks of research we had an aha moment and finally checked Amazon and of course Amazon offers a large selection of solar powered globe string lights!

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Best Food Gifts for the Holidays >> The Fruit Company Holiday Gift Tower

Best Get - The Fruit Company Holiday Gift TowerYesterday (December 6, 2012) I opened my front door and had a wonderful surprise waiting for me.  Jed over at The Fruit Company had sent me The Fruit Company Holiday Gift Tower to review.  In full disclosure, companies send me “stuff” all the time and very seldom do they make it onto Party Idea {Pros}.  We only post reviews of products we would buy ourselves and 100% recommend to others.

Let's start with the presentation of The Fruit Company Holiday Gift Tower

  • This gift tower is very lovely – large enough to be impressive but not so big as to be gauche. The red, green and white boxes and ribbon capture the holiday spirit perfectly.  We especially like that all the boxes coordinate rather than match.  This gives the entire presentation a modern, chic sensibility.The Fruit Company Holiday Gift Tower  - Apples, Nuts & Truffles

The contents of The Fruit Company Holiday Gift Tower

  • 1 Pecan, Cherry, Hazelnut Truffles – 3 oz – DELICIOUS – so good in fact that before I had even unpacked all the rest of the boxes, my family had devoured the chocolates.
  • 1 Chocolate Covered Cherries – 4 oz. – These are quite good, if you like cherries in your candy.  Personally, it is not my thing but the chocolate around the cherries was to die for.
  • 1 Mixed Nuts – 4 oz. – Very fresh with just enough salt to satisfy me but not too much salt for my mother-in-law who prefers unsalted nuts.

The fruit was all yummy – among the very best we have ever received.  For a change none of it was over-ripe!

  • 2 Fuji Apple(s) –
  • 3 Bosc Pear(s) –
  • 3 Comice Pear(s)

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Have You Activated Your Nuts Today?

Activated almonds are trending everywhere today!  Social media is all abuzz mocking Australian celebrity Chef Peter Evans who recently revealed his typical daily diet includes activated almonds.  Our first question, like that of many others was, what the heck are activated nuts?  The Australian natural health magazine Wellbeing defines an activated nut as “a nut that has been soaked and sprouted to release its enzyme inhibitors”.

The article goes on to explain:

Why should nuts be activated?

All nuts (and this includes seeds too) have an enzyme inhibitor that keeps them from sprouting into a tree, bush or plant that they carry inside of them.  Once they are planted in the ground and given some water, the enzyme inhibitor is destroyed and the nut/seed can begin to sprout.

So, when you eat a lot of nuts and/or seeds, you can end up with a lot of that enzyme inhibitor in your digestive tract and that just slows everything down. It can actually result in digestive distress in much the same way gluten does. Constipation, stomach cramps and bloating are examples of some issues people have eating raw, unactivated nuts.

The more enzymes you eat, the less of your own body’s enzymes are required to break down food…which keeps you younger, longer too.

So in plain English, these are nuts that are soaked and dried for 12-24 hours in order to get rid of those things that slow down your digestive system.

Now that we know exactly what activated almonds are we spent way too much time trying to find them online . After a frustrating search we finally realized Amazon stocks various flavored raw organic activated almonds.  The best alternative is to make them yourself.

According to Easy Peasy Organic pretty much all you need to do is :

  1. Soak raw organic almonds  in water for 12 hrs.   NOTE: After soaking, the nuts will look nice and puffy and may even start to show signs of sprouting.
  2. Rinse the nuts under running water, and if you want to add flavor – now is the time to do it. Just shake a couple of tsp of  sea salt, garlic salt, dehydrated onion powder, tamari or curry powder over the wet (rinsed) almonds, and stir to combine well.      NOTE: If you want, you can use and eat the activated almonds as they are, without roasting them.
  3. Now, “roast' the almonds by drying out the nuts on low heat – either in a dehydrator or on the lowest temperature your oven will do (ie 140F). This will take anywhere from 6-24 hrs, depending on the temperature you're using. The nuts will be done when they feel (and taste) dry.

We do believe this would make a fabulous, funny and on trend holiday grab bag gag gift this season. Wrap up this great Activated Almonds T-Shirt with a bag of “activated nuts”!  Way better than  some of those other stupid gift ideas.

Party Hearty!