Starry-Filled Morning Skies

Good Starry-Filled morning to you! You might be wondering or confused by what exactly I mean about a starry-filled morning and trust me, I’d be wondering myself, if it wasn’t me who typed it! This morning began as most of my typical mornings do and as I settled in to watch some of NBC’s The Today Show (my morning show of choice!), I was pleasantly surprised to learn I’d be treated to a live performance by Coldplay. For years, I’ve been a Coldplay fan. Yes, a lot of their songs are melancholy, but as melancholy as they may be, the words behind them are beautiful and emotive, allowing me to reflect on the past and present. There is something about Coldplay sounds that causes introspection within me. It also sparks a bit of personal creativity, hence me writing this very post after a brief hiatus.

It really isn’t that Chris Martin, the lead singer of Coldplay has the most beautiful or strongest voice I’ve ever heard, but rather the emotion he evokes when he performs. The entire band shows their passion and authentic contentment when they are performing on stage. Their energy and passion for music and performing is infectious; I could literally feel it from the confines of my home. It is an undeniable passion and enthusiasm and just seeing them on stage feeling the very music they are playing captivates me. I’ve yet to ever see them perform in concert, but it is my goal. If I’m not mistaken, they will be visiting my local area for a concert in the coming months, but unfortunately, I haven’t purchased tickets and I’m sure it’s probably sold out. All the same, I can settle for watching them live on TV, because their passion and emotions are just as real and felt as they would be if I were to see them in concert.

So, if you haven’t seen Coldplay perform before, whether it is on TV or in-person, I encourage you to take a moment, when you have a chance, to check out a performance or do, ideally this morning’s performance. It is a reminder to me of the power of music and how it has the ability to remind, encourage, soothe, console, and reflect.

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Wake up Wonders

Good morning! Today, my area of the country (suburbs of Philadelphia) and elsewhere, I’m sure, are in for a steamy couple of days! It is expected that we will approach ‘heat wave‘ status, if we DO happen to reach three consecutive days above 95 or something of that nature, I believe. If you haven’t noticed, I am an avid follower of weather forecasting and always like to keep abreast of all that is occurring within the atmosphere. Needless to say, I’ll be limiting my time outdoors day, especially since the air quality is expected to be rather poor.

Anyhow, this post was intended for yesterday, but given the accidental deleting of the post, I decided to partially revise it and share my thoughts today. Given breakfast is my favorite meal of the day and has been since childhood (think bottomless bowls of cold cereal – Life and Crispix were favorites, filled to the brim). I’m not sure exactly what it is about breakfast that I love so much, but I tend to think it is the crunchy or crispy textures, different mix-ins, such as granola pieces, dried fruits, and different shapes. The possibilities are endless and even though one can be eating cereal each day, the experience can always be different, because of the significant number of cereal varieties gracing store shelves. Without further adieu, here are some new and exciting breakfast options I recently spotted on store shelves (and some which will be arriving shortly, if they haven’t already!):

Kellogg’s Origins Line:

Kellogg's Origins Ancient Grains Kellogg's Origins Fruit and Nut

As one of Kellogg’s newest product lines, Kellogg’s Origins arrives with several different varieties (everything from a traditional cereal, such as the two pictured above, to granolas, to muesli) and promises to be wholesome, nutritious and of course, packed with flavor and personality! They are available in the following varieties: (via kelloggs.com)

Traditional Cereals:

  • Ancient Grains Blend Cereal: touch of honey and a delicious combination of spelt, quinoa, barley and brown rice flakes and KAMUT® Khorasan wheat.
  • Fruit and Nut Blend Cereal: blend of toasted oats, puffed wheat, bran flakes, and wheat, corn and rice flakes.

Granolas:

Kellogg's Origins Cranberry Almond Kellogg's Origins Raisin Apple

  • Cranberry Almond with Pumpkin Seed Granola: blend of toasted oats, wheat, barley, spelt, rye, fruit and nuts.
  • Raisin Apple Granola: toasted oats, wheat, barley, spelt, rye and fruit.

Muesli: (note: can be eaten HOT or COLD)

Kellogg's Origins Raisin Apricot Kellogg's Origins Apricot Cashew

  • Apricot Cashew Coconut with Raisins and Almonds Muesli: blend of fruit and nuts, rolled oats, wheat, rye, spelt and barley
  • Raisin Apricot Cranberry with Pumpkin Seeds Muesli: blend of fruit and nuts, rolled oats, wheat, rye, spelt and barley

Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes with Energy Clusters:

Kellogg's Frosted Flakes

Before you question this cereal choice, I know it’s reputation is not always the healthiest, but this new version packs a whopping 9 grams of protein per serving! It is the traditional sweet cereal flakes, now with the addition of “energy clusters,” which I assume is something along the lines of granola. It is not specified on the Kellogg’s product page for this cereal what exactly the energy clusters are, but based on the image, I perceive it to be that of a granola taste/texture.

Yoplait Yogurt Plenti Line: (via yoplait.com)

Yoplait Plenti Strawberry Yoplait Plenti Blueberry

Another favorite way of mine to wake up each morning is a cool, creamy cup of yogurt! While I love traditional yogurt, Greek yogurt, in recent years, has become a reliable favorite/staple of mine, given the amount of protein, hearty and creamy texture and array of varieties and flavors now available. One company, Yoplait, has been a consistent favorite of mine for years, so I was excited to learn of this new variety – Plenti, to be hitting store dairy cases soon! It is available in both strawberry and blueberry and is described as:

  • Greek Yogurt
  • Whole Grain Oats
  • Flax
  • Pumpkin Seeds
  • Premixed; so it can be enjoyed at your leisure without much effort!

Evolution Fresh Greek Yogurt and Yogurt Parfaits (influenced by Dannon):

Evolutin Fresh Parfaits     Evolution Fresh Greek Yogurt

Given it’s rising popularity on refrigerated shelving in stores, you may already be familiar with the smoothies and juice drink beverages offered by the brand, Evolution Fresh. Appearing most frequently in the refrigerated cases at Starbucks, at a press conference at the end of March, it was announced that Evolution Fresh in partnership with Dannon, the beloved yogurt company, would be introducing a line of Greek yogurts and Greek yogurt parfaits in July 2015. Check out the official press release here: (https://news.starbucks.com/news/evolution-fresh-and-dannon-smoothies)

Greek Yogurt Parfaits (to be offered in Starbucks Cafe’s):

  • Strawberry
  • Dark Sweet Cherry
  • Fresh Berries (seasonal)
  • Honey

Fruit-on-the-bottom Greek Yogurts:

  • Blueberry
  • Black Cherry
  • Raspberry Blackberry
  • Pineapple Passion Fruit

Well, there you have it! This is just a sampling of select items I’ve spotted recently, but of course, I’m always on the lookout and will be sure to keep you posted on anything new and exciting I happen to come across! Enjoy!