Soft Batch Double Chocolate Fudge Cookies

Warning: These Soft Batch Double Chocolate Fudge Cookies are for CHOCOLATE LOVERS only!!! Full of intense chocolate fudge flavor, these cookies basically melt in your mouth. So good with a glass of milk!

How to make Chocolate Fudge Cookies

  1. Preheat your oven and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Whisk together the dry ingredients!
  3. Melt chocolate chips and the butter in the microwave. And in a separate bowl whisk the vanilla sugars and eggs. Beat in milk and vanilla. Then add melted chocolate in and combine.
  4. Add the dry ingredients and stir to combine. Then toss in the remaining chocolate chips!
  5. Scoop 1/4 cupfuls of the batter onto the prepared baking sheet, and bake one tray at a time.
  6. Press a few extra chocolate chips on top of the warm cookies, if desired. Cool on the cookie sheet… then devour!!!
  • These cookies must – I repeat – MUST cool completely on the tray. I usually leave the room for a good hour before I even think about sneaking them off the tray.
  • Because these cookies are so chocolate heavy, I added a good pinch of salt and vanilla the the dough. Please don’t skip these two ingredients – they make it work.
  • Any chocolate chip brand will do.

Source: Soft Batch Double Chocolate Fudge Cookies – Baker by Nature

PlayStation 5

PlayStation 5

Sony´s PlayStation 5 video game console went on sale last week, and the company hopes that it will bring a long-term income.

It is a key test for the Japanese company´s ability to sustain its biggest growth engine during the coronavirus pandemic gaming boom. It goes head-to-head with Microsoft´s next-generation Xbox with both consoles having seen high pre-order sales. The previous console, PlayStation, 4 sold 113 million units since 2013, and it transformed gaming into the biggest part of Sony´s business.

The new console is selling for $500 and it matches the price of the Xbox. The most impressive aspect of the gadget is not the eye-catching design but the controller which can deliver a wide range of vibrations that simulate different tactile sensations.

Difficult words: console (a device that is used to play video games), sustain (to continue), growth engine (a mechanism that enables business growth), simulate (to be like something else), tactile sensation (a feeling that is sensed through touching).

Source: PlayStation 5 – level 3 | News in Levels

Critical Thinking Skills [Infographic]

See the source image
© Business.com

Critical thinking skills truly matter in learning. Why? Because they are life skills we use every day of our lives. Everything from our work to our recreational pursuits, and all that’s in between, employs these unique and valuable abilities. Consciously developing them takes thought-provoking discussion and equally thought-provoking questions to get it going.

Here is a simple infographic offering questions that work to develop critical thinking on any given topic. Whenever your students discover or talk about new information, encourage them to use these questions for sparking debate and the sharing of opinions and insights among each other. Together they can work at building critical thinking skills in a collaborative and supportive atmosphere.

critical-thinking-cheatsheet-tmb

How Does It Work?

Critical thinking is thinking about purpose. It’s clear, rational, logical, and independent thinking. It’s about practicing mindful communication and problem-solving with freedom from bias or egocentric tendencies. You can apply critical thinking to any kind of subject, problem, or situation you choose. We made the Critical Thinking Skills Graphic for you with this in mind.

The Critical Thinking Skills Graphic includes categories for Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How. Each section has eight questions that begin with their corresponding word. The questions are meant to be versatile and broad, and applicable to a range of topics.

In these questions, you’ll find great potential conversation starters and fillers. That said, this is obviously not a definitive list! Let them inspire your students to come up with their own questions for critical thinking skill-building.

Source: The Critical Thinking Skills Cheatsheet [Infographic] – Wabisabi Learning

7 Signs You May Have Had COVID-19 Without Realizing It

By Korin Mille for Prevention ©

portrait of young woman with antiviral mask outdoors
F.J. JIMENEZGETTY IMAGES

Whether you had a “bad cold” this winter or recently endured a cough that would not quit, it’s only natural to wonder if you might have had COVID-19 without realizing it. That’s especially true now that infectious disease experts say the virus was likely already spreading before cities started to lock down and put social distancing orders in place.

“As the weeks progress, it’s become evident that this is a virus that was widespread throughout our country, particularly in more populated areas, sooner than we thought,” says William Schaffner, M.D., an infectious disease specialist and professor at the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

So, could you have had COVID-19 without realizing it? It’s possible. “Most people who have coronavirus have an uncomplicated case of infection, and it could be indistinguishable from the cold or influenza,” explains infectious disease expert Amesh A. Adalja, M.D., senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security. Plus, some people have no symptoms at all—up to 40% of infections, according to estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Unfortunately, there’s no way to know with 100% certainty if that illness you dealt with last winter was COVID-19 or if you happened to pick up an asymptomatic case at some time. But experts say some signs can be tip-offs that you might have had COVID-19 already. Here are the top ones to know, plus what it means for immunity.

1. You had a “bad cold.”

Early in the pandemic, people believed that COVID-19 didn’t start circulating in the U.S. until late February and March. New research from the University of Texas suggests otherwise. For the study, scientists analyzed throat swabs taken last winter in people who had suspected flu cases. These swabs were done in Wuhan, China (where the novel coronavirus originated) and Seattle, Washington (where the first case of COVID-19 was confirmed in the U.S.).The researchers discovered that for every two cases of the flu, there was one case of COVID-19. As a result, they believe COVID-19 likely arrived in the U.S. sometime around Christmas.

“It took longer to get out to rural areas so, if you were on a farm this winter and you had the sniffles, you probably just had a cold. If you were in New York City or another major city, you might have had a COVID infection and never knew it,” Dr. Schaffner says.

It can be tough to distinguish a cold from a mild form of COVID-19 without a test, depending on which symptoms you experience, he says, but colds don’t typically cause shortness of breath, severe headaches, or gastrointestinal symptoms like COVID-19 can. Here’s the full list of the CDC’s official symptoms:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

2. You lost your sense of smell or taste at one point.

Loss of smell and taste has been a big hallmark of COVID-19. While this symptom doesn’t occur for everyone, Dr. Adalja points out that it’s now strongly linked with the novel coronavirus.

Preliminary data from the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS) found that, in COVID-19 patients who lost their sense of smell, 27% had “some improvement” within about seven days, while most were better within 10 days.

Worth noting: It’s also possible to temporarily lose these senses with other respiratory conditions, like a cold, the flu, a sinus infection, or even with seasonal allergies. But experts say that the symptom can linger in some people and last for months after recovering from COVID-19.

3. You’ve been dealing with unexplained hair loss.

This hasn’t been widely studied in the context of COVID-19, but many people who have recovered from the virus are reporting issues with hair loss. Actress Alyssa Milano, who has been suffering from COVID-19 symptoms for months, shared a video of herself on Instagram in early August repeatedly brushing out large clumps of hair after she showered.

It’s unlikely that you would just lose more hair than usual without having other COVID-19 symptoms, like a cough or fever, Dr. Adalja says. It’s also important to note that hair loss can happen from stress in general, he says—and there’s been a lot of stress due to the pandemic. If you’re experiencing hair loss, it’s possible it’s due to an unknown COVID infection, a build-up of stress during uncertain times, or another underlying issue.

4. You feel breathless sometimes.

Research published in the journal JAMA has found that people with COVID-19 can have after-effects of the virus, including shortness of breath. It’s not entirely clear why at this point or how long this can last, but it’s likely due to lasting inflammation in the lungs.

“This is one of the well-known lingering effects in people who were diagnosed with COVID-19,” Dr. Schaffner says. “If you have this, well, perhaps that illness you experienced before was actually COVID.” If you’re experiencing shortness of breath, call your primary care physician for guidance or ask for a referral to a pulmonologist. They can often prescribe medications and treatments, like an inhaler, that can help, Dr. Schaffner says.

5. You have a cough that will not go away.

A lingering cough is another symptom that people who participated in the JAMA study reported. The cough is often dry, meaning that nothing comes up, like like phlegm or mucus, Dr. Adalja says. This is fairly common: Data from the CDC found that 43% of people who had COVID-19 still had a cough 14 to 21 days after getting a positive test for the virus.

6. You’re really, really tired.

This is one of the biggest lingering effects after a person has COVID-19, according to the JAMA study. That study found that 53% of patients said they were struggling with fatigue around 60 days after they first showed signs of the virus.

“We’re seeing some people who had mild illness who have fatigue for some period of time,” Dr. Adalja says. But, he says, it’s not entirely clear right now why this happens. It could be the way a person’s immune system reacts to the virus, or it could simply be the way the virus works in the body.

Keep in mind that fatigue is a really common issue and can be a sign of many different health issues (including, of course, not getting enough sleep). Like hair loss, people who experience fatigue due to COVID-19 would have also had other symptoms of the virus in the past, Dr. Adalja says.

7. You have unusual symptoms that seem to be lasting forever.

Experts stress that COVID-19 is still a new virus, so doctors and scientists are learning more about it all the time. Research on lasting effects of the virus is ongoing, and it’s difficult for doctors to say at this time that having certain symptoms could mean you had a COVID-19 infection, while others don’t, Dr. Adalja says.

Source: 7 Signs You May Have Had COVID-19 Without Knowing, Per Doctors (prevention.com)

Our Favorite White Winter Outfits

By Shelby Comroe for Marie Claire ©

Slide 1 of 25: All right, we're officially debunking the outdated "no white after Labor Day" rule. A touch of white adds an instant freshness to an otherwise dull winter wardrobe. There are so many ways to go about winter white dressing, and with a variety of shades to choose from, your outfit options are endless. Start out easy by swapping your dark-wash denim for a pair of jeans in bone, or top off your look with some bright white accessories. Take it to the next level by rocking a head-to-toe white look with a statement coat, or style your favorite summertime maxi with winter-approved pieces. Here are a dozen winter white looks that prove that no matter how you choose to style the shade, it'll beat the all-black looks everybody else is wearing.
© Christian Vierig Getty Images

All right, we’re officially debunking the outdated “no white after Labor Day” rule. A touch of white adds an instant freshness to an otherwise dull winter wardrobe. There are so many ways to go about winter white dressing, and with a variety of shades to choose from, your outfit options are endless. Start out easy by swapping your dark-wash denim for a pair of jeans in bone, or top off your look with some bright white accessories. Take it to the next level by rocking a head-to-toe white look with a statement coat, or style your favorite summertime maxi with winter-approved pieces. Here are a dozen winter white looks that prove that no matter how you choose to style the shade, it’ll beat the all-black looks everybody else is wearing.

Slide 2 of 25: White is a neutral, just like beige and black, so it shouldn't be limited to just one season. A great pair of white high-waisted trousers are timeless. Style them with a beige coat, black t-shirt, black boots, and a silk scarf for a classic look.

High-Waisted Trousers

White is a neutral, just like beige and black, so it shouldn’t be limited to just one season. A great pair of white high-waisted trousers are timeless. Style them with a beige coat, black t-shirt, black boots, and a silk scarf for a classic look.

Slide 3 of 25: $182.50Shop NowTake the classic route and style these Vince trousers with any neutral piece in your wardrobe. Or spice things up and pair them with a bright statement coat in a fun color.

 © shopbop.com

Pleat Front Tapered Trousers

$182.50

Take the classic route and style these Vince trousers with any neutral piece in your wardrobe. Or spice things up and pair them with a bright statement coat in a fun color.

Slide 6 of 25: You can't go wrong with a sleek winter white coat in a classic silhouette.

Classic Coat

You can’t go wrong with a sleek winter white coat in a classic silhouette.

Slide 7 of 25: $1495.00Shop NowRecreate Christine Centenera's exact look with this WARDROBE.NYC coat, the line consists of timeless wardrobe staples that will stay in your closet season after season.

 © fwrd.com

Double Breasted Coat

$1495.00

Recreate Christine Centenera’s exact look with this WARDROBE.NYC coat, the line consists of timeless wardrobe staples that will stay in your closet season after season.

Slide 8 of 25: Trade in your boring black boots for a bright white pair that will give your dull winter wardrobe an instant refresh.

© Claudio Lavenia – Getty Images

These Boots Are Made For Walking

Trade in your boring black boots for a bright white pair that will give your dull winter wardrobe an instant refresh.

Slide 10 of 25: I love an oversized white blazer, regardless of the season. If you're worried about looking too summery, style it with a pair of leather pants to give it that winter feel.

 © Edward Berthelot – Getty Images

An Oversized White Blazer

I love an oversized white blazer, regardless of the season. If you’re worried about looking too summery, style it with a pair of leather pants to give it that winter feel.

Slide 13 of 25: $195.00Shop NowGo full prepster and style this sweater with a collared shirt underneath or edge things up by adding a black turtleneck, leather pants, and some lug sole boots.

 © lacoste.com

Unisex LIVE Wool Blend V-neck Sweater

$195.00

Go full prepster and style this sweater with a collared shirt underneath or edge things up by adding a black turtleneck, leather pants, and some lug sole boots.

To view the complete collection of white, click on the link.

Source: All Black? Don’t Know Her. Presenting: Our Favorite White Winter Outfits (msn.com)

This Is How To Brew Yourself the Perfect Cup of Coffee’

Well + Good article by Tehrene Firman

‘I’m a Food Scientist, and This Is How To Brew Yourself the Perfect Cup of Coffee’
Photo: Stocksy/Natalie Jeffcott

Making a perfect cup of coffee is easy enough if you know what you’re doing. The taste and mouthfeel of every cup is affected by the beans, the roast, and even the water quality. And if there’s anyone who knows what they’re doing, it’s a food scientist. “There’s definitely a rabbit-hole of coffee science to explore,” says Makenzie Bryson Jackson, MS, food scientist and product development manager at Panaceutics.

While Jackson has certainly taken in a lot of important intel about coffee-making over the years, there are a handful of simple tips that allow you to make barista-level coffee in the comfort of your own home. Here’s what to keep in mind the next time you’re brewing yourself a pot.

How to make a perfect cup of coffee at home

1. Choose the right beans

If you’re not choosing high-quality beans, your coffee isn’t going to taste good. It’s as simple as that. “Bean selection is the most important part of a good cup of coffee. Hands down,” says Jackson. And there are two main species you should know: “There’s Robusta, which has low acidity and high bitterness, and Arabica beans, which are less bitter and often more flavorful,”  she says. “Knowing how old the beans are, where they were grown, and how they were handled and stored is important as well.”

2. Consider the roast

The roast plays a big role in how your coffee ends up tasting, too. “The roasting process initiates one of the most magical reactions in food science: Maillard browning,” says Jackson. “This reaction brings out the delicious caramelized complex coffee flavor and aroma, but too much browning will definitely increase bitterness.”

When choosing a roast, you’ll see there’s a range from light to dark. According to Jackson, the lighter the coffee, the fruiter and more acidic it will be. And when you choose a darker the roast, the beans are more bitter—but the flavors are more complex. “A medium roast is a good place to start with a nice balance and a bittersweet finish, but it’s good to try a range of roasts to find what your unique palate likes best,” she says.

3. Rethink your storage

Where and how you’re storing your coffee beans can make or break how it’s going to taste once you brew it. “Your coffee should be stored in an airtight vessel with no light exposure,” says Jackson. And the reason behind that? Both can cause your beans to go bad… very quickly. And no one wants to start their morning with a stale cup of coffee.

4. Grind your beans correctly

When you’re grinding your own coffee beans, Jackson says to make sure the grind is uniform. “A burr grinder is typically best for this,” she says. “The blade grinders don’t uniformly break the beans up, so you’ll have small dust-sized particles and larger bean bits.” Also, make sure you’re not grinding your beans too far in advance of brewing. “This will alter the flavor of your coffee, as you’ve exposed more surface area of the bean to oxygen,” she says.

5. Check your water quality

While Jackson says water quality is lower on the list of priorities when making a cup of coffee, but it’s still something to consider if you want to take your brew to the next level. “There are research scientists who have studied this—legitimately. I could nerd out here,” says Jackson. “The hardness of your water will affect the coffee’s flavor; a harder water has more minerals, which may increase the bitter perception of the coffee. I use distilled water when I brew coffee.”

6. Be aware of water temperature and brew time

When you’re brewing, you don’t want your water to be too hot or too cold. “If the water is over 205 degrees, your coffee will be prone to over-extract and be bitter and harsh. If it’s under 195 degrees, it will make it more difficult to extract, leaving you with sour flat coffee,” says Jackson. “This isn’t a hard and fast rule, but general guidelines.” With these tips, you may never want to order coffee elsewhere ever again.

Source: Well+Good (wellandgood.com)

The Most Essential Beauty Product of the Covid-Era Winter Is… A Humidifier?

By Roxanne Adamiyatt for Redbook©

Slide 1 of 5: A general rule: dry tissue is probably irritated tissue. Ensuring your skin is moist and hydrated can be done a number of ways, but can be made infinitely harder if the air in your living space is dry. Central heating or your radiator turns on and all of a sudden your nasal passages are as dry as the Sahara. Let's face it, that only gets worse when you're moving from the cold air outside to the dry heat indoors. And if you get sick? Talk about un-comfy. Enter, the age old, but not exactly sexy humidifier. It adds moisture to your air, and in this day and age, that's a luxury you simply cannot do without—not only because it's good for your airways, but because it's also good for the dewy appearance of your skin. That will come in handy for all of those Zooms during the winter months. Turns out, there's an explanation for why humidifiers are a practical purchase for your health and your skin these days. Dr. Dendy Engelman tells us why the investment benefits the former: "According to the CDC, in low humidity environments, influenza virus is 5x more infectious than in higher humid environments. The reason being that moisture in the environment, attaches to the viral particles making them heavier and pulls it out of circulation. The longer the virus is airborne, the higher the risk or inhalation and subsequent infection. In addition, higher humidity supports mucous membrane health. Mucous membranes protect our body from harmful pathogens by forming a barrier around portals of entry (think our nose and mouth). If these areas become dry or cracked, then it provides potential portals of entry for bacteria and infection." But beyond that, Dr. Engelman reinforces that there are a number of reasons one should run their humidifier. Most importantly: it supports skin barrier function. "The skin barrier functions by keeping bacteria and pathogens out, while keeping moisture in. If Dryness, cracking and flaking occur then there is not enough moisture in the "mortar," which puts the skin at risk of infection, irritation or breakouts where these portals of entry occur," she explains. Another benefit according to Dr. Engelman is of course, preventing transdermal water loss. Translation: "While you're sleeping, body temperature varies. When the core temperature increases, vasodilation occurs and we can experience dehydration through transepidermal water loss. If our environment is optimally humidified, the water loss through the skin is lessened and our skin remains hydrated throughout the night," Whether you're in it for the skincare boost or the airway relief, here 5 good options to get in on the non-negotiable beauty essential of the COVID-era.
© Courtesy

A general rule: dry tissue is probably irritated tissue. Ensuring your skin is moist and hydrated can be done a number of ways, but can be made infinitely harder if the air in your living space is dry. Central heating or your radiator turns on and all of a sudden your nasal passages are as dry as the Sahara. Let’s face it, that only gets worse when you’re moving from the cold air outside to the dry heat indoors. And if you get sick? Talk about un-comfy. Enter, the age old, but not exactly sexy humidifier. It adds moisture to your air, and in this day and age, that’s a luxury you simply cannot do without—not only because it’s good for your airways, but because it’s also good for the dewy appearance of your skin. That will come in handy for all of those Zooms during the winter months.

Turns out, there’s an explanation for why humidifiers are a practical purchase for your health and your skin these days. Dr. Dendy Engelman tells us why the investment benefits the former: “According to the CDC, in low humidity environments, influenza virus is 5x more infectious than in higher humid environments. The reason being that moisture in the environment, attaches to the viral particles making them heavier and pulls it out of circulation. The longer the virus is airborne, the higher the risk or inhalation and subsequent infection. In addition, higher humidity supports mucous membrane health. Mucous membranes protect our body from harmful pathogens by forming a barrier around portals of entry (think our nose and mouth). If these areas become dry or cracked, then it provides potential portals of entry for bacteria and infection.” But beyond that, Dr. Engelman reinforces that there are a number of reasons one should run their humidifier. Most importantly: it supports skin barrier function. “The skin barrier functions by keeping bacteria and pathogens out, while keeping moisture in. If Dryness, cracking and flaking occur then there is not enough moisture in the “mortar,” which puts the skin at risk of infection, irritation or breakouts where these portals of entry occur,” she explains.

Another benefit according to Dr. Engelman is of course, preventing transdermal water loss. Translation: “While you’re sleeping, body temperature varies. When the core temperature increases, vasodilation occurs and we can experience dehydration through transepidermal water loss. If our environment is optimally humidified, the water loss through the skin is lessened and our skin remains hydrated throughout the night,”

Whether you’re in it for the skincare boost or the airway relief, here 5 good options to get in on the non-negotiable beauty essential of the COVID-era.

Slide 2 of 5: $150.00Shop NowThe humidifier made for glowing skin. Not only is it dishwasher safe and easy to clean, but it's got smart sensors to maintain proper humidity day and night. Bonus: anti-mold technology means that you're breathing clean, comfortably moistened air. And of course, your skin won't just glow, this is made to help soothe cold and flu symptoms too.
2/5 SLIDES © getcanopy.co
1) Canopy
$150.00

The humidifier made for glowing skin. Not only is it dishwasher safe and easy to clean, but it’s got smart sensors to maintain proper humidity day and night. Bonus: anti-mold technology means that you’re breathing clean, comfortably moistened air. And of course, your skin won’t just glow, this is made to help soothe cold and flu symptoms too.
Slide 3 of 5: $49.99Shop NowNot only is this humidifier super quiet, it has a number of settings to choose from. Plus, you only need to change the filter every four to six months, which is great for forgetful types.
3/5 SLIDES © amazon.com
2) 4L Cool Mist Ultrasonic Humidifier
$49.99

Not only is this humidifier super quiet, it has a number of settings to choose from. Plus, you only need to change the filter every four to six months, which is great for forgetful types.
Slide 4 of 5: $64.99Shop NowCool mist? Check. 24-hour run time? Double check. UV technology to make sure your mist is clean? Confirmed.
4/5 SLIDES © amazon.com
3) HCM350B Germ Free Cool Mist Humidifier
$64.99

Cool mist? Check. 24-hour run time? Double check. UV technology to make sure your mist is clean? Confirmed.
Slide 5 of 5: $32.99Shop NowIf silence is your number one priority, this option is a great bet. Sure, it's got a fine mist, but the whisper quiet run is what will keep you coming back for more.
5/5 SLIDES © amazon.com
4) Cool Mist Humidifier
$32.99

If silence is your number one priority, this option is a great bet. Sure, it’s got a fine mist, but the whisper quiet run is what will keep you coming back for more.

Source: The Most Essential Beauty Product of the Covid-Era Winter Is… A Humidifier? (msn.com)