Category Archives: Information

Added sugar affects long term brain function

From Forbes Magazine:

Overeating, poor memory formation, learning disorders, depression  – all have been linked in recent research to the over-consumption of sugar. And these linkages point to a problem that is only beginning to be better understood: what our chronic intake of added sugar is doing to our brains.

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), the average American consumes 156 pounds of added sugar per year. That’s five grocery store shelves loaded with 30 or so one pound bags of sugar each.  If you find that hard to believe, that’s probably because sugar is so ubiquitous in our diets that most of us have no idea how much we’re consuming.  The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) puts the amount at 27.5 teaspoons of sugar a day per capita, which translates to 440 calories  – nearly one quarter of a typical 2000 calorie a day diet.

Read the rest of the article here for the long term effects that excessive sugar can have on brain function  at Forbes Magazine.


Welcome back readers.

It has been a wild and busy year in the Common Cents household. I apologize for dropping off the face of the earth for the last 6 months, but real life has demanded my time.

I have had so many things I have wanted to share in that time, but trying to write it out was on the bottom of my priority list.

I’m going to come back and give you what I can. I won’t be posting the weekly prices anymore. My grocery shopping habits have lost their schedule. I find that I have stocked up on so many things that I mostly only buy some fresh food and a couple sale items each week or two. I will gladly pass on copies of my spreadsheets if anyone wants to use them for their own.

What I would like to bring you are recipes that I try, money saving tips, online shopping resources, and health related news. I can’t guarantee any sort of scheduling, and I won’t be waxing poetic in my posts, but I will share what I have played with.

You are also more than welcome to ask me anything you think I may be able to give you an answer (or opinion) about. I’m also willing to test out recipes or techniques and share my results.

Let me know what I can do for you to make this a blog you want to keep coming back to. You can email me through the website, drop me a note on Facebook, or rant at me on Twitter.


Talk to you soon!

Coming soon…

I apologize for the lack of content over the last couple months. Home life tends to take priority when you are a solo blogger with a full time job and kids.

Please continue to come back for more content in the coming months. Posts I have planned include:
-DIY cake and cupcake stands
-Are we being “greenwashed” by product marketing?
-Homemade cleaning products
-The basics of using cloth diapers
-The start up of a local coupon group
-More adventures in online shopping
-and many more….

Feel free to email me if you have any topics you would like to hear about, posts you’d like to write, or local food you’d like to tell the public about.

Can we talk school lunches?

My son starts kindergarten in 2 weeks! OMG, where has the time gone. It just recently dawned on me that I will have to prepare a lunch for him every day from now until at least 2020. Where do I start? What if he can’t take peanut butter? How do I keep foods safe to eat?


I ask you, the readers, for any and all advice you can give me about school lunches.

What are you feeding your kids? Are you packing a drink in a container or a juice box? What kind of containers are you using? Are you leaving them notes?

Inspire us with your fun ideas, include links to your favorite websites.

Why we canceled our TV service

Easy answer: because it is expensive, there is never anything on, and it is all free on the internet.


I have been a TV aficionado pretty much my whole life.  When I was growing up a meaningful family evening consisted of Home Improvement  or Law & Order. I have always had cable or satellite service as an adult paying my own bills. Until recently, our TV was always on when we were awake, whether we were watching it or not.

We still love TV, but we have developed a different relationship with it. These days we only want to watch specific shows on our schedule. Watching TV on the internet has given us completely different control over our TV watching. Now we watch what we want when we want. We don’t have to worry about if the VCR or DVR was set to record properly. We can watch our favorite shows where every we have access to internet. The lack of commercials doesn’t hurt either. At most you get one commercial between segments, but most websites don’t have any commercials at all.

Every Canadian network has some or all of their programming available online now. A high percentage is available in high definition. Most TV shows are available the day after it originally aired. If you are a person who records shows, this wouldn’t be any different for you.

To make internet streaming TV seem more normal we connect a laptop to our TV with an HDMI cable and change the display settings to use extended desktop. Check into the connection options of your hardware.  I also recommend you check the bandwidth limitations of your internet service level.  Shaw customers can log into their account online to see their limits and their usage stats, I’m not familiar with Telus.

We do pay for Netflix. I know most of the content is older, or low budget, but there are a lot of movies and programs I have never watched. For $8 a month it gives us a little extra selection.

Here is a list of the channel websites I have found that stream free TV content within Canada:


Much Music

Learning & lifestyle:
Knowledge network
National Geographic
Food Network

Disney Junior

Free documentaries
Spike TV

Tell us about any other websites you watch TV on. Is there a specific show you are looking for that I can help you find? Tell us about your TV preferences in the comments below.

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