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Monday Morning Mojo-SMART Goals

by Diane Cardano-Casacio & Her Team

SMART goals help improve achievement and success.  A SMART goal clarifies exactly what is expected and the measures used to determine if the goal is achieved and successfully completed.


A SMART goal is:


Specific : Linked to what you want, specifically, in your life.  Answers the question—Who? and What?


Measurable:  The success toward meeting the goal can be measured.  Answers the question—How?


Attainable: Goals are realistic and can be achieved in a specific amount of time and are reasonable.


Relevant (results oriented):  The goals are aligned with what you want in life; include the expected result.


Time framed: Goals have a clearly defined time-frame including a target or deadline date.



Not a SMART goal: 

  • I want to lose some weight.


Does not identify a measurement or time frame, nor identify why the improvement is needed or how it will be used.


SMART goal:

  • I will lose 30 pounds by the 31st of March, wear a size 8 dress/size 32 waist pants, still enjoy the foods I eat in moderation, all while doing the things I need to do each day at work and in my personal life. I will lose the 30 pounds by averaging a weekly weight loss equal to 1 to 2% of my current weight without starving myself or exercising like a maniac.



SMART Goal Planning Form



Specific – WHO? WHAT?



Measurement/Assessment – HOW?



Attainable/Achieve – REASONABLE?






Timed – WHEN?

Monday Morning Mojo-Today’s Monday Morning Mojo is going to be short and sweet.

by Diane Cardano-Casacio & Her Team

Today’s Monday Morning Mojo is going to be short and sweet. First, we hope that you and your family have an amazing Christmas in a couple of days and that your day is filled with love and lots of fun. If you don’t celebrate Christmas, please enjoy the day off.


We also know that there are people in your life that may not be able to be with you because they are far away or have passed away. Be sure to take a minute to remember them tomorrow.

Merry Christmas from our family to yours.

Tasty Tuesday Bites! (Christmas Treats!)

by Diane Cardano-Casacio & Her Team

Tasty Tuesday Recipes!

Christmas Treats, special thanks to Primally Inspired and Budget Paleo

Dairy Free Dark Chocolate Peppermint Hot Cocoa and Peppermint Mocha Latte


For the peppermint mocha lattes:

  • 4 cups of freshly brewed coffee
  • Optional toppings: homemade mint marshmallows, toasted coconut, fresh mint, dark chocolate shavings, dark chocolate chips, etc.


Dark Chocolate Peppermint Hot Chocolate Directions:

  1. Over medium low heat, whisk together the coconut milk, honey, cacao powder, vanilla, peppermint extract, salt, and chocolate chips/pieces.
  2. Stir constantly until chocolate is melted and mixture comes to a simmer.
  3. Pour in mugs and serve hot.
  4. Add any optional toppings and Enjoy!

Peppermint Mocha Latte Directions:

  1. Prepare the hot chocolate as directed above.
  2. Fill your mug ¼ to ½ full with the peppermint hot cocoa (amount depends on your desired strong coffee flavor – I like a 50/50 mix, but that’s me).
  3. Fill the rest of the way with hot coffee and stir.
  4. Top with any optional toppings and serve. Enjoy!


  1. Place shredded, flaked or shaved coconut into a skillet over medium heat.
  2. Stir often and cook until most of the coconut turns golden brown. You can use unsweetened or sweetened coconut, but the sweetened coconut turns brown much faster than the unsweetened.
  3. To rim your glass: With a small brush (or your finger), thinly coat the rim of your glass with some warmed honey.
  4. Place the shredded coconut on a plate.
  5. Gently press the rim of the glass on the plate with the coconut.
  6. Gently rotate or rock back and forth until the coconut sticks to the rim of the glass.


Gingerbread Men Cookies

5 1/2 cups almond flour

1 TBSP cinnamon

1 TBSP ground ginger powder

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/2 tsp Celtic sea salt

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 cup olive oil (be sure not to use extra virgin, just plain olive oil), or coconut oil (see notes above)

1/2 cup pure maple syrup

1 TBSP pure vanilla extract

1/2 cup unsulfered blackstrap molasses

2 eggs

1 tsp lemon zest

In a large bowl, combine almond flour, cinnamon, ginger powder, cloves, salt and baking soda.  In a smaller bowl mix together your oil, sweeteners, vanilla, eggs and lemon zest. Then stir your wet ingredients into your dry ingredients and mix well.

Chill dough for 2 hours.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Then roll dough out on a silicone mat or parchment paper until it's about 1/4" thick.  Her suggestion is to roll it out between two layers, but that didn't work out to well for me.    Again see my notes above for suggestions on how to make this easier.

If you used two layers of parchment paper, then remove the top layer and using cookie cutters make your gingerbread men (a medium cookie cutter works good).  Decorate with dried fruit and nuts if you like (we left ours plain). 

Either transfer with a spatula or transfer the whole mat/paper to a baking sheet. 

Cook at 350 degrees for about 15-20 minutes.  Remove from the oven when they are done to your liking, then remove them from the mat or parchment paper and cool on a wire rack.  Then you get to enjoy your yummy cookies!


Monday Morning Mojo-As promised, here are a couple more holiday funnies:

by Diane Cardano-Casacio & Her Team


Continuing the current trend of large-scale mergers and acquisitions, it was announced today at a press conference that Christmas and Hanukkah will merge. An industry source said that the deal had been in the works for about 1300 years. While details were not available at press time, it is believed that the overhead cost of having twelve days of Christmas and eight days of Hanukkah was becoming prohibitive for both sides.By combining forces, we're told, the world will be able to enjoy consistently high-quality service during the Fifteen Days of Chrismukkah, as the new holiday is being called. Massive layoffs are expected, with lords a-leaping and maids a-milking being the hardest hit. As part of the conditions of the agreement, the letters on the dreydl, currently in Hebrew,will be replaced by Latin, thus becoming unintelligible to a wider audience. One of the sticking points holding up the agreement for at least three hundred years was the question of whether Jewish children could leave milk and cookies for Santa even after having eaten meat for dinner. A breakthrough came last year, when Oreos were finally declared to be Kosher. All sides appeared happy about this. A spokesman for Christmas, Inc.,declined to say whether a takeover of Kwanzaa might not be in the works as well. He merely pointed out that, were it not for the independent existence of Kwanzaa, the merger between Christmas and Chanukah might indeed be seen as an unfair cornering of the holiday market. Fortunately for all concerned, he said,Kwanzaa will help to maintain the competitive balance. He then closed the press conference by leading all present in a rousing rendition of "Oy Vey, AllYe Faithful."


What to give an optimist and a pessimist

A family had twin boys whose only resemblance to each other was their looks. If one felt it was too hot, the other thought it was too cold. If one said the TV was too loud, the other claimed the volume needed to be turned up. Opposite in every way, one was an eternal optimist, the other a doom and gloom pessimist. Just to see what would happen, at Christmas time their father loaded the pessimist's room with every imaginable toy and game. The optimist's room he loaded with horse manure. That night the father passed by the pessimist's room and found him sitting amid his new gifts crying bitterly. "Why are you crying?"the father asked. "Because my friends will be jealous, I'll have to read all these instructions before I can do anything with this stuff, I'll constantly need batteries, and my toys will eventually get broken." answered the pessimist twin. Passing the optimist twin's room,the father found him dancing for joy in the pile of manure. "What are you so happy about?" he asked. To which his optimist twin replied, "There's got to be a pony in here somewhere!"


Merry Christmas from our family to yours.

Monday Morning Mojo-Christmas Cards & Holiday Greetings!

by Diane Cardano-Casacio & Her Team

Here’s a link to a whole page of holiday greeting opportunities from HP, Hallmark,JibJab, Microsoft and a bunch of other companies. Plus, there’s a list of helpful tips for you there, too.


Weekend Events for 12/06-12/08

by Diane Cardano-Casacio & Her Team

The Holidays have finally arrived. We celebrated Thanksgiving, and Hanukkah. Christmas is just around the corner and before you know it, New Year’s Eve will come knocking on our door.  We hope you and your family use this time to relax and spend time together and with friends. Here are some events going on this weekend that you can go out and enjoy with everyone! (Just be sure to bring a jacket!)

Friday, December 6th, 2013

Christmas in Keswick Village, Easton Road and Keswick Avenue, Glenside, PA 19038, @6PM

-Shop, eat and mingle as always! But as an added treat they  will be offering free trolley rides from 6 to 9 pm in front of Susquehanna Bank (but don't forget to tip the driver) and musical entertainment all evening including the Abington High School chorus and the Bucks County Country Gentlemen barbershop quartet. Santa will be arriving by fire truck at 7:15 and lighting of the Christmas tree in front of the clock tower. Stores will be open late, so be sure to see all the treats this little village has to offer! Questions? Go to:

Saturday, December 7th, 2013

2nd Annual Ardsley Tree Lighting Ceremony, Ardsley Park1000 block of Maple Street in Ardsley, @7PM.

-Come check out the beautiful display as Ardsley Park sets up their Christmastime display! Meet Santa Claus, and enjoy hot chocolate and candy canes, while caroling with Abington Presbyterian Choir.  For more information, contact Commissioner Dennis Zappone at 215-887-0224.

Holiday Stop & Shop Craft Bazaar, 10980 Norcom Road, Philadelphia, PA 19154, @10AM

-Looking for the perfect gift? Come out for a day of shopping and fun!  80+ Vendors Food & Refreshment! Fun for the kids! Santa will be here and available for photos! Get your face painted too! For more info: contact Heather at

At 7:55 a.m. Hawaii time (12:55 p.m. EST) on December 7,1941, Japanese fighter planes attacked the U.S. base at Pearl Harbor, Hawaii,launching one of the deadliest attacks in American history. The assault, which lasted less than two hours, claimed the lives of more than 2,500 people,wounded 1,000 more and damaged or destroyed 18 American ships and nearly 300 airplanes. Almost half of the casualties at Pearl Harbor occurred on the naval battleship USS Arizona, which was hit four times by Japanese bombers. As we commemorate the 70th anniversary of this “date which will live in infamy,” as President Franklin D. Roosevelt described it on December 8, 1941, explore five little-known facts about the USS Arizona and the attack that plunged America into war. 


1. Twenty-three sets of brothers died aboard the USS Arizona. There were 37 confirmed pairs or trios of brothers assigned to the USS Arizona on December 7, 1941. Of these 77 men, 62 were killed, and 23 sets of brothers died. Only one full set of brothers, Kenneth and Russell Warriner, survived the attack; Kenneth was away at flight school in San Diego on that day and Russell was badly wounded but recovered. Both members of the ship’s only father-and-son pair, Thomas Augusta Free and his son William Thomas Free, were killed inaction.


Though family members often served on the same ship before World War II, U.S. officials attempted to discourage the practice after Pearl Harbor. However, no official regulations were established, and by the end of the war hundreds of brothers had fought—and died¬—together. The five Sullivan brothers of Waterloo, Iowa, for instance,jointly enlisted after learning that a friend, Bill Ball, had died aboard the USS Arizona; their only condition upon enlistment was that they be assigned to the same ship. In November 1942, all five siblings were killed in action when their light cruiser, the USS Juneau, was sunk during the Battle of Guadal canal in the Solomon Islands.


2. The USS Arizona’s entire band was lost in the attack.Almost half of the casualties at Pearl Harbor occurred on the naval battleship USS Arizona, which was hit four times by Japanese bombers and eventually sank.Among the 1,177 crewmen killed were all 21 members of the Arizona’s band, known as U.S. Navy Band Unit (NBU) 22. Most of its members were up on deck preparing to play music for the daily flag raising ceremony when the attack began. They instantly moved to man their battle positions beneath the ship’s gun turret. At no other time in American history has an entire military band died in action.

The night before the attack,NBU 22 had attended the latest round of the annual “Battle of Music”competition between military bands from U.S. ships based at Pearl Harbor.Contrary to some reports, NBU 22 did not perform, having already qualified for the finals set to be held on December 20, 1941. Following the assault, the unit was unanimously declared the winner of that year’s contest, and the award was permanently renamed the USS Arizona Band Trophy.


3. Fuel continues to leak from the USS Arizona’s wreckage.On December 6, 1941, the USS Arizona took on a full load of fuel—nearly 1.5 million gallons—in preparation for its scheduled trip to the mainland later that month. The next day, much of it fed the explosion and subsequent fires that destroyed the ship following its attack by Japanese bombers. However,despite the raging fire and ravages of time, some 500,000 gallons are still slowly seeping out of the ship’s submerged wreckage: Nearly 70 years after its demise, the USS Arizona continues to spill up to 9 quarts of oil into the harbor each day. In the mid-1990s, environmental concerns led the National Park Service to commission a series of site studies to determine the long-term effects of the oil leakage.  


Some scientists have warned of a possible “catastrophic” eruption of oil from the wreckage, which they believe would cause extensive damage to the Hawaiian shoreline and disrupt U.S. naval functions in the area. The NPS and other governmental agencies continue to monitor the deterioration of the wreck site but are reluctant to perform extensive repairs or modifications due to the Arizona’s role as a “war grave.”In fact, the oil that often coats the surface of the water surrounding the ship has added an emotional gravity for many who visit the memorial and is sometimes referred to as the “tears of the Arizona,” or “black tears.”


4. Some former crew members have chosen the USS Arizona as their final resting place.The bonds between the crew members of the USS Arizona have lasted far beyond the ship’s loss on December 7, 1941. Since 1982, the U.S. Navy has allowed survivors of the USS Arizona to be interred in the ship’s wreckage upon their deaths. Following a full military funeral at the Arizona memorial, the cremated remains are placed in an urn and then deposited by divers beneath one of the Arizona’s gun turrets. To date, more than 30 Arizona crewmen who survived Pearl Harbor have chosen the ship as their final resting place. Crew members who served on the ship prior to the attack may have their ashes scattered above the wreck site, and those who served on other vessels stationed at Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941, may have their ashes scattered above their former ships. As of November 2011, only 18 of the 355 crewmen who survived the bombing of the USS Arizona are known to be alive.


5. A memorial was built at the USS Arizona site, thanks in part to Elvis Presley.After the USS Arizona sank, its superstructure and main armament were salvaged and reused to support the war effort, leaving its hull, two gun turrets and the remains of more than 1,000 crewmen submerged in less than 40 feet of water. In 1949 the Pacific War Memorial Commission was established to create a permanent tribute to those who had lost their lives in the attack on Pearl Harbor, but it wasn’t until 1958 that President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed legislation to create a national memorial. The funds to build it came from both the public sector and private donors, including one unlikely source. In March 1961,entertainer Elvis Presley, who had recently finished a two-year stint in the U.S. Army, performed a benefit concert at Pearl Harbor’s Block Arena that raised over $50,000—more than 10 percent of the USS Arizona Memorial’s final cost. The monument was officially dedicated on May 30, 1962, and attracts more than 1 million visitors each year.

Displaying blog entries 1-7 of 7




Contact Information

Photo of Diane Cardano & Associates Real Estate
Diane Cardano & Associates
CARDANO Realtors
1021 Old York Road, Suite 401
Abington PA 19001
Office: 215-576-8666
Fax: 215-576-8677