THE STAR OF HOLIDAY PARTY FOOD

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Be the star of your holiday party with this healthy and festive option for the buffet table, a Broccoli Tree. It's among the recipes featured in the Christmas issue of Woman's World magazine. 

Start by taking a 9"x4" Styrofoam cone. Wrap it in plastic wrap. Using 14 cups of broccoli florets, trim the ends flat and insert a toothpick into each floret. Starting at the bottom of the cone and working around it in rows, insert the toothpicks with florets until the tree is covered. Transfer the tree to a serving plate. 

Cut red peppers in half lengthwise; then cut crosswise into 1/4"-wide strips. Cut one yellow pepper in half lengthwise. Using a 2-1/4" star-shaped cookie cutter, cut star shapes from one piece.  Cut the remaining piece crosswise into 1/4"-wide strips. Using a 1" star-shapped cookie cutter, cut out shapes from carrots cut into 1/4"-thick slices.

Arrange pepper strips on tree, tucking ends in between florets, leaving about 1/2" sticking out. Press cherry tomatoes and carrot stars onto toothpicks and insert them in between florets to hold vegetables on tree. Tuck radish slices in between florets. Insert toothpick into edge of yellow pepper star; insert into top of tree.

If not serving immediately, lightly drape damp paper towels over tree, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate. Serve with your favorite dip. 

 

 

HONESTY IS THE BEST POLICY

Go head, tell them what you think. Just be nice about it. 

Go head, tell them what you think. Just be nice about it. 

It's true! Honesty really is the best policy according to new research from the University of California San Diego's Emotion Lab. An article about the research in Spry Living magazine reported that the researchers found that "prosocial" lies - the little lies we tell others in order to not hurt their feelings - makes us feel good in the moment, but guilty later.

The reason behind this reaction is actually very sweet: We tend to lie to people we care about. The researchers advise people to try "gentle honesty" instead. So, for example, when a friend or family member asks you if you like their new hair style, and you hate it, say something along the lines of, "I'm partial to when you wear it longer," or whatever the case may be. The main thing is to be honest because you want the other person to trust you, but don't be be harsh or blunt. 

FLU SHOT STUDY

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Ready or not, flu season is here.

If you're planning on getting a flu shot, you may be interested to know a new study from British scientists claims that getting vaccinated in the morning is ideal. Those in the study who got their flu shots between 9 a.m. and 11 a.m. produced more antibodies (think of them as mini flu fighters) than those who were vaccinated in the afternoon.