by Greg Walters
A Belated 4th of July Greeting to my Readers.
I am late in publishing this week because for the past seven days I have managing the running of fireworks tent for my church. To make a long story short . . . all of the effort, labor and interaction with others culminates on the 4th of July. Let's just say it was a very, very busy day.
Because of that, I have not had time to write anything for this week's Raytown Report. But I have kept up with what folks are saying on the blog. Two topics come to mind. One (this part is easy) is the 4th of July and fireworks. Though the law has changed and the shooting and sale of fireworks have been allowed in Raytown for two years, it is still a topic of strong debate.
So, I ask you to take a look at this week's poll questions (yes, there are two) and take the time to vote on whether or not the sale and shooting of fireworks should be continued in Raytown.
To those who say I am biased on this question -- after all, I did sell fireworks for an entire week -- I can only remind you that I, like anyone else who participates in the poll is allowed only one vote per question.
Personally, I view the shooting and viewing of fireworks as a small piece of Americana that is actually brings people closer together to enjoy good times. It only happens once a year. So, lighten up and enjoy the ride.
As for me, I am going to go outside and shoot off some colored smoke bombs for my dog, Wickett, who seems to enjoy barking at the smoke as it fills the air.
The second question deals with an issue that it is inching its way to the one year mark. More specifically, when do you think the 63rd Street Bridge will be completed?
I dug out an old copy of the now defunct Raytown Post in which a certain city official told the reporter that the completion date was June 1, 2010.
That was over a month ago. So, I've given you some dates to make your best guess . . . be it educated or otherwise.
Like they are fond of saying in Chicago, "vote early and often".
See you next week!
TO YOUR HEALTH
by Jenn Walters
It seems like the rage these days in food is fitting more “good stuff” into products we already know and love. Take plant sterol fortified OJ or the official FBG pumpkin muffins or even toaster pastries with extra fiber as recent examples. It bothers me that many times these types of food get labeled as healthy, even though they’re loaded with sugar and preservatives. But in moderation, I’m cool with it. Especially those pumpkin muffins. Yum.
Another food-plus product that I’m cool with is Zap Peanut Butter. This stuff has what’s usually in peanut butter—peanuts—plus beet, carrot, spinach, sweet potato, banana, tomato, blueberry, orange peel, strawberry and tart cherry. Whew. That’s a lot of good stuff. PLUS, it tastes good. You can barely taste the added ingredients, and it’s especially delicious on toasted wheat bread with a drizzle of honey or agave nectar. Warm and melty, yum.
The founder of Zap, Dr. Z, sent Erin and me a couple of jars of the natural creamy and creamy PB, along with a sampling of Zap’s energy bars. Dr. Z has recently been working with different school districts to get the peanut butter in school lunches, as it’s a sneaky way to get more nutrients into our kiddos. In fact, the products contain more antioxidants per serving than nutritional powerhouses spinach or kale. Score!
While the peanut butter was by far my fave of the Zap products, the energy bars weren’t bad. They come in two sizes: 1.5 oz. or 2.5 oz. The smaller size has about 170 calories each, and the larger ones come in at 290 cals. While the 2.5 oz. bars had too many calories for me to really be a snack, I did eat the large strawberry-vanilla yogurt bar as an emergency meal replacement, and it kept me full for four-plus hours. According to Dr. Z, the bars are made with all-natural dehydrated fruits, veggies and peanut butter that actually expand in your stomach. Food science is so cool.
Overall, all of the bars kind of tasted like a grown-up fruit roll-up, were pretty chewy and surprisingly weren’t overly sweet like I find many bars to be. My favorite flavors were apple and banana. The super-fillingstrawberry-vanilla yogurt was pretty good with an almost sweet potato and strawberry flavor, plus it had some yogurt in it which tasted kind of like icing. My least favorite was the cola flavor, which was more spice cake with a cola aftertaste than anything. But, if you love washing spice cake down with Diet Coke, this could be your winner.
The bars and peanut butter are a little pricey at $15.95 for four 12-oz. peanut butter jars or upwards of $12 for a box of six energy bars, but tell me, are you willing to pay a bit more for foods that are fortified with fruits, veggies, antioxidants and more? What about for your chillins? Do you like this food-fortified stuff? —JennIf you’d like to see more about these products or order them online, check out the Zap website. For more foodie fun, check out the FBG fast-food salad guide or tips to lighten any Rachael Ray recipe