Author Archives: Matt Benning

Morning Indulgence

I always start my morning with a cup of fresh coffee; it has always been the best way for kicking off my day. I have had this habit for many years. Like any coffee lover, I know the importance of a good coffee maker. In fact, I had been using my coffee maker for the past six years and it has been brewing me the tastiest coffee.

Unfortunately, a few days ago when I was preparing my morning cup of coffee, as usual, the coffee pot refused to make any more coffee. I cajoled, threatened it and tried to reason with it, but that was that. It was having none of my business. I decided to immediately shop for a new coffee maker because I love taking coffee that I have specially prepared myself.


As usual, in our family, we never buy anything without first reading up about it. That is why I started my search for the best coffeemaker by reading some reviews on to find the most reputable one and I did find a few to suit my fancy.


One thing I noticed though is that the market is flooded with so many coffee makers and it is quite a task picking the best quality coffee pot. It seems as if every other day, there is a new brand and model of coffeemaker going up for sale.


After seeking some information widely and comparing on different places, I had a good idea what I wanted. You can check this page to see the full information about different coffee makers.  Here are the best two coffee makers that I considered buying and I eventually went home with the Hamilton Beach Brewstation.


OXO Barista Brain Coffee Brewer 9-Cup

OXO Barista Brain 9cup


If you are ready and willing to spend a little more for a high-quality coffee maker, The OXO on Barista Brain is what you should go for and you will enjoy a flavorful cup of coffee all the way. This coffee brewer is designed to imitate the handmade or manual pouring techniques delivering you the tastiest and cleanest cup of coffee all the time.


This unit comes with a microprocessor that will adjust and time itself according to how you set it. When it comes to temperature, this coffee maker is known to have a very consistent temperature of between 197.6 to 204.8 degrees ensuring that your coffee gets neither too hot nor too cold.


It is also very easy to use since everything is controlled by just one simple single dial, and you are guaranteed of a full flavor extraction. In addition, The Barista Brain is made from stainless steel coming in a sleek and smooth design. From the capacity, you can tell that it is just what a medium family needs to make enough coffee to feed everyone. Stainless steel is also known for its resilience and durability and ease of cleaning.



Very stylish

Steady temperature control

Internal microprocessor for timing and brewing settings

Easy to use

Full flavor extraction





Hamilton Beach BrewStation-12 Cup Coffee Maker

Hamilton Beach BrewStation-12 Cup

The Hamilton Beach BrewStation is able to brew you high quality and tasty coffee at only an affordable initial cost. It is designed to drip the brewed coffee directly into a cup and it does not come with a thermal carafe.


It comes in a sleek design featuring a number of modern functions such as a programmable clock, a display menu, a self-regulating warming plate and an automated switch to put the brewer on or off.


The setting function enables you to set your brew time up to a whole day in advance so that you can wake up the following day to an aroma of freshly brewed coffee. This unit also allows you to change modes or adjust the extraction levels and make different types of regular, iced or bold coffee. Information on also shows that this coffeemaker is very easy to use and it is made of sturdy material so that it can serve you for a long time.



Adjustable settings for various brewing options


Easy to use

Has a display menu

Comes in a sleek design

Makes coffee of different tastes



No temperature control

A New Gadget

I love taking a glass of freshly made smoothie first thing in the morning. This has been my routine for as long as I can remember. I can say with confidence that I have only been to the doctor’s a few number of times. That is what happens when you pack your body with nutrients every morning.


To make a great smoothie, you require a perfect blender, one that will squeeze all the juice and the nutrients out of the vegetables and fruits. I had a wonderful blender that served me faithfully for five years, until recently when it starts acting up.


Before it can finally stop working, I have decided to get a brand new blender because either way, my morning smoothie routine must continue as usual. Shopping for a new blender can be very challenging given the fact that there are so many brands out there and each brand claims to be on top of the game. In addition, you are lost between choosing one based on the price or on its features. As I saw on it is best to find a balance between the two. Mostly, I look for an appliance that is safe and can serve me for the longest time possible.


I find it very important to do my research well before buying one and to check the reviews of the customers who have previously used the brand I am interested in. Here are three blenders that carried the day after doing my research on the best blender on the market.


Vitamix A3500 Ascent Series

Vitamix A3500 Ascent Series

According to, The Vitamix A3500 comes in a sleek design featuring an all-black stainless steel base, an LED touchscreen display and a clear plastic jar. This unit has pre-programmed settings for soups, frozen desserts, spreads, dips and smoothies. In addition, it has ten-speed options and it is self-cleaning.


This unit also has a built-in timer on the display and it has a tamper that helps the blender to process thick mixtures such as frozen desserts and butternuts. When you have this one in the kitchen, you can be assured of feeding your family nutritious smoothies all the time.


Easy-to-use controls

Runs quietly

The handle has a comfortable grip

Blades do not require assembly

The jar is easy to place on the base



The blade cannot be removed for easier washing


Hamilton Beach 1800 Watt Blender

Hamilton Beach 1800w

The Hamilton Beach 1800W blender, which is programmable, comes with a tamper, an LCD timer on the display and a sixty-four-ounce plastic jar. The speed dial on the blender has ten settings and extra presets for cleaning, crushing ice even in large amounts, pureeing and making smoothies.


This unit is easy to assemble, to use and clean and it is quiet even during operation. Its motor is very powerful reaching a peak power of 1800 watts and a peak speed of over 140mph. It is sturdily built to serve you for long and its motor is thermal insulated to prevent the blender from overheating.  



Runs quietly

The blender jar is easy to position on the base

Safe to clean in the dishwasher

Blades do not require assembly

Grinds coffee beans nicely





Oster BLSTMB 1200 Watt blender

Oster BLSTMB 1200 Watt

With a peak power of 1200 watts, the Oster BLSTMB Blender is powerful enough to make smoothies, crush ice and grind coffee beans without any hitches. This blender has three-speed dials for chopping foods, making milkshakes and pre-programmed settings for making smoothies.


It comes in a sturdy black and silver base, 24-ounce single-serve blending cup for making a smoothie on the go and a bigger 48-ounce blending jar. The blender jar can safely be washed in a dishwasher, and the blade can be removed for easier and safer cleaning. For more information about this smoothie blender, you can see details here and you will see why many people pay glowing tribute to the appliance.



Safe to clean in the dishwasher

Has removable blade

Very easy to use even for beginners

You can use it to grind coffee beans

It is easy to set the jar on the base



Noisy when in use

Treating the Muscle Strain

Muscle strain or a muscle tear occurs because of a muscle being torn or overstretched when undue pressure is applied on the muscle. Muscle strains are painful and they can occur when carrying out the normal day-to-day activities such as working out or playing. No matter how careful you are, there will come a time when you suffer from muscle strain when working out. If you are ever a victim, here are some of the best ways for caring for that pulled muscle so that you can get back to your workout routine.  


Ice cools everything and sends it on a mend

Picture icing the knee

After suffering from a muscle strain, immediately apply some ice on the muscle and do it gently using ice that has been wrapped in a towel or a cloth. This reduces the chances of swelling and inflammation, and it will relieve the pain. Repeat the process for fifteen minutes after every hour during the first day and do it after every four hours for a couple of days.


Firmly compress the strained muscle


Compressing the torn muscle will reduce the swelling that occurs after the injury. The strained muscle should be compressed with an elastic bandage. Be cautious when compressing so that you do not wrap the muscle too tightly which can hinder free circulation of blood causing you much further pain.


Rest the strained muscle


Avoid straining the already strained muscle further by resting it and avoiding any activity that causes the muscle to feel pain. Rest the muscle for just a couple of days but do not over-rest it because it may end up becoming weak. When you notice that the muscle is no longer painful when you move it, start exercising it mildly to quicken the healing and to restore its full strength.


Elevate the injured muscle

Picture elevating the knee

If it does not hurt severely, elevate the strained muscle up above your heart. This should be done while sitting and the exercise will help reduce the swelling.


More self-care tips include:


Staying healthy ensures that your muscles are strong and less likely to be injured. Take a balanced diet and exercise frequently to stay in shape. A hot drink in the morning helps gives you energy before you hit the treadmill.


Always do some warm-up and stretching before doing exercises when you get back to your normal activities.  This increases blood circulation in your muscles lowering the risk of suffering from a strained muscle.


Take the over-the-counter medication to relieve the inflammation, pain and swelling.


Three days after the injury, apply some heat for a couple of times in a day. Dip a clean towel in hot water, squeeze any excess water, and gently compress the hot towel on the affected area. This will enhance blood circulation around the area and this quickens the healing process.


Seek medical attention


When the muscle strain is mild, the above home self-care tips are all you need to get on the path to mending. See a doctor if pain persists for more than a week, if you are unable to move your legs or arms, you experience numbness of the injured muscle, you cannot walk and when you see blood coming out of the injured area. In such cases, a doctor is the best person to determine the extent of the injury and to subscribe the medication.

Smoothies – It’s What’s for Breakfast

Every day for a breakfast, I must have a glassful of smoothie. I love smoothies because they are packed with most of the nutrients that I need to keep me going all day long. If you are looking for a healthy diet that is easy to prepare and will keep your weight on a check, a nice, fresh smoothie is the way to start your day.


Here are a few of the benefits to show you why you should always have a nutrient-packed smoothie for breakfast:


It strengthens your immune power

Vegetables, banana and a glass of green smoothies

Smoothies are made from fruits and vegetables that are rich in antioxidants and nutrients, which boost your immunity. Smoothies have also been proven to strengthen the bones and they are good for the eyes. Therefore, if you do not want to be falling ill every now and then, try incorporating smoothies in your everyday breakfast.


Helps you to lose and manage weight


Smoothies are the healthiest and most easy way of losing some extra pounds. Look carefully for additions to your smoothie that are excellent in weight loss such as berries, green veggies and red peppers. In addition, include foods that are rich in proteins and fiber so that you feel full for longer to avoid a lot of snacking.


Makes digestion and bowel movement easier

Picture holding a cup of coffee

Smoothies are rich in fiber that helps digestion a lot. In addition, blending breaks the foods in very small portions that are easy to digest. If you have been experiencing stomach discomforts or digestion related challenges, incorporate smoothies in your diet and you will notice the change.


Reduces cravings for unhealthy junk foods and snacks


If you are struggling with the unhealthy habit of always snacking on junk, smoothies will solve that problem. Protein-packed smoothies keep you feeling fuller for a long time and incorporating some greens such as spinach in your smoothies will reduce your appetite cutting your cravings for some unhealthy snacks.


Helps to detoxify our bodies


Our bodies require to be detoxified occasionally to get rid of oxidants that may result to serious health complications. Smoothies especially the ones contain dark green leafy vegetables, sweet potatoes and dark berries are so rich in antioxidants and will help your system to flush out toxins that threaten your health.


Get a youthful glowing skin


Research has shown that taking smoothies that are rich in carotenoids such as the ones containing mangoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkins, carrots, spinach and kale among others end up giving you a healthier and glowing skin.


Improve your sleeping habit and beats insomnia


Studies have shown that taking smoothies that contains foods that are rich in calcium and magnesium can help you sleep better. Such foods include bananas, oats and kiwis. Do include some in your smoothie recipe.


Makes you feel happier all the time


A glass of smoothie for breakfast is a dose of energy in your body that will leave you feeling much better and happier. Scientists have proven that taking a smoothie that contains a lot of vegetables and fruits gives you a positive approach towards life and makes you feel good and refreshed.

Gives a boost to your brain power


The nutrients contained in a smoothie have been proven to give a boost to your brain. This improves your memory, mental clarity and helps you become more focused. Incorporate foods such as coconut, which is rich in omega-3 fatty acids for a healthier brain.