Notes Along the Way

November 2015

Mary Montague Sikes


Come to Williamsburg, Saturday, November 7, 1 to 4 p.m.

Holiday Open House

Prince George Art and Frame

107 Colony Square, Jamestown Road

   Mary Montague will be one of the gallery artists painting from a still-life. Refreshments and fun.


Come to Mathews, Friday and Saturday, November 27, 28, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Bay School Community Arts Center

Holiday Open House

   She will be signing Evening of the Dragonfly and showing some of the art created by Farrah Ferand, heroine of her book.


Crossroads Art Center, Friday, November 20, 6 to 9 p.m.

2016 Staples Mill Road

Richmond VA

Holiday Open House

   Three of her paintings will be in the judged Metropolitan Richmond Artists Association show in the Side Car Gallery there. Also, please look for her gallery in Building Two.


Please visit her new art blog, The Artful Way:

   The author loves to write about art and would appreciate your visits and comments.


Brain Fitness and Nutrition



How important is your diet when it comes to brain health? According to a great deal of research, it means a lot.

As I read about so many diets and plans, the thing that stands out most to me is that certain foods are almost always there. One of those is broccoli. I see it over and over as almost a miracle vegetable. In the article, "Eat Your Way to Brain Health", Amy Paturel cites a study from Martha Clare Morris, professor of nutritional epidemiology at Rush University, "people who ate one to two servings of green leafy vegetables a day were cognitively 11 years younger than those who ate fewer greens." (Leafy greens include broccoli, spinach, and kale, according to this article.)

The MIND (Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay) diet "emphasizes fish, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, beans, and a daily glass of wine." It also stresses berries and leafy greens. This diet claims to cut the risk of Alzheimer's by as much as a whopping 53%.

Over and over, I read about the benefits of eating blueberries to achieve "the best cognitive perks". Other important items to improve brain health are olive oil, avocados, tomatoes, walnuts, grapes, coffee, and dark chocolate. Writers especially appreciate the addition of dark chocolate to their brain fitness diets.

Every night, I try to have a green leafy salad with arugula, tomatoes, and avocados as part of our dinner or a variation of those ingredients.

Here is a broccoli salad recipe I often use. Perhaps the addition of blueberries would make it even more brain healthy. The bacon might need to be deleted, but perhaps we can have one vice.

Broccoli Salad


Broccoli Florets

6 to 8 slices of bacon crumbled

½ cup chopped yellow onion

1 package of craisins-5 oz. size

8 ounces cheese, cheddar or whatever, cut into very small pieces

1 cup Hellmann's mayonnaise (or whatever amount seems good)

Cherry tomatoes halved or grape tomatoes

Seasoned salt and pepper to taste


Cut up broccoli to manageable size pieces. Place in large bowl. Add bacon, onion, craisins, and cheese. Mix. Add tomatoes and mayonnaise. Add seasonings and toss gently. Place in serving bowl and garnish with tomato halves and arugula. 


Do you have a brain fitness plan?

--Mary Montague Sikes


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