October 2016 - Julie Green and Keen
There are just so many things to be recognized in October, but one of my favorite is today, NATIONAL PASTA DAY! :D  I don’t know anyone who doesn’t love pasta.  It is such a versatile food that can be made to be spicy, sweet, savory, rich…and the list goes on.

Happy National Pasta Day!
Did you know that pasta has been made and consumed as early at 3,000 B.C. by the Chinese?  It only was brought to America in 1789 by Thomas Jefferson after being in France.  I don’t know how people survived without it. 

Pasta has become a staple in much of American popular culinary works.  So why not find out a little bit more about our favorite pasta?  Here are some fun facts about pasta…I mean who doesn’t want to know more?

•    Italians consume more pasta than anyone else in the world.
•    Pasta comes in many different colors depending on the sauce it is made with.
•    The word pasta originated from the Italian word paste.
•    The average American eats 20 lbs. of pasta annually.
•    There are 310 specific forms of pasta that are known by over 1300 different names.

I remember years ago in college, pasta was the base for nearly every meal.  Pasta can be enjoyed on any budget and can be prepared to make the low cost noodles seem like a high end dish.  I still always keep pasta on hand at home.  It is great for those days when cooking an entire meal seems daunting but you want to eat something good.  It is easy to make a delicious meal in just a few minutes with pasta.

When you hear the statement, “Happy National Pasta Day” I hope you get as excited as I do and imagine yourself indulging in delicious pasta delights.  I am sure you have a favorite kind or shape of pasta, but today I say, try a new one.  With 310 different options, why not dapple in a new meal shape.  Get cooking and make sure you have your fair share of pasta. :)

What is your favorite pasta and pasta dish?

Go green and stay keen,

Where has time gone, I can’t believe it is October 4th already!  I feel like it was just spring and now we are nearly into fall.  October is always such a fantastic month for our family.  It is my daughter Hannah’s birthday, Vegetarian Awareness Month, and it is Halloween.

October 1st was World Vegetarian day and the kick-off of Vegetarian Awareness Month!   October is one of my favorite months where I make sure that everyone knows I am vegetarian and why they should try it too.  World Vegetarian Day and Vegetarian Awareness Month can be celebrated by everyone, vegetarians and non-vegetarians alike. Plus, today is World Animals Day <3

My family is not vegetarian, but we do cook a lot of vegetarian meals.  During October we only eat vegetarian meals to celebrate this wonderful month.  It is always great to see my children and husband choosing vegetarian options over meat options.  During this month I really shine with my cooking, coming up with new recipes to surprise them that it is all vegetarian.

October is National Vegetarian Awareness Month

Fall offers the best selection, in my opinion, for fresh vegetables.  The squashes, zucchinis, pumpkins, and the delicious vegetable list goes on.  I believe that October brings the first feeling of the warm and coziness of fall and the future of winter.  There is just something about it that makes me such a happy person.

October is also Hannah’s birthday.  She always has something up her sleeve and hidden plans to organize everything for her party.  It is fun seeing her get so into the planning and set up for parties.  She is growing up so fast, I can’t wait to see what she has planned this year.

Over the winter and summer, I found some really great fall vegetarian recipes I can’t wait to try!  October brings so much joy and excitement in our house.  I am looking forward to having friends and family over for delicious vegetarian dinners this Vegetarian Awareness Month.

If you have any questions about becoming a vegetarian or some recipes that will trick your friends that there is not meat please feel free to ask and comment below!

Go Green and Stay Keen,

You would have to be oblivious to the world if you weren’t aware that October is breast cancer awareness month.  Every year October brings societies focus to this disease that affects so many people. Although most people are aware about breast cancer, many bypass the steps to detect the disease and how to help prevent it.

Many people know someone or have in some way been effected by this cancer.  I wanted to share a couple statistics from breastcancer.org:

•    About 1 in 8 women will develop invasive breast cancer over the course of her lifetime.
•    For women in the U.S., breast cancer death rates are higher than those for any other cancer, besides lung cancer.
•    The most significant risk factors for breast cancer are gender (being a woman) and age (growing older).

Breast cancer is a scary disease but with knowledge and being proactive we can better understand it and do things to stop it in its tracks.  Here are some helpful ways to reduce the risk of getting breast cancer:

•    Eat healthy and exercise regularly
•    Avoid too much alcohol
•    Know your family history to better predict and manage
•    Get regular breast exams
•    Relax

Breast cancer and those who are forced to fight it have a special place in my heart, one of my best friends fought this terrible cancer 4 years ago.  Luckily, she caught it early and took the right steps until she finally beat it.  Watching the stages of cancer and treatment from a front row seat was so difficult and eye opening. 

Cancer is one of those things you never want to believe will affect you but chances are you know someone who has had it or is currently fighting it.  I believe with knowledge and strength in numbers we can come closer to a cure.  Every type of cancer is debilitating and we must take the time to donate and help find a cure.

This October please take the time to educate yourself on breast cancer or another cancer that has effect you.  Let’s become an informed society ready to knock cancer out!

Go green and stay keen,