Welcome to Awakenings

Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Oinkers Cover Ups!

Today is...another oinker day! This time the little piggies are tidily wrapped in a blanket. And, you get to be a hog about all the covers! Let's celebrate...

National Pigs in a Blanket Day

National Pigs In a Blanket Day is celebrated annually on April 24.  Across the world, “Pigs in a Blanket” is a term that refers to a variety of pig dishes in different blankets.

    In the United States, it is often hot dogs or sausages wrapped in biscuit dough or croissant dough, then baked. The dough may be homemade, however, canned dough sure makes the fixin' quicker and easier. Served as appetizers these little “Pigs in a Blanket” are mighty tasty. Kids love these! Cheese can be added for a little extra zest. Just don't forget the mustard!

    Our little piggies, cocktail wieners, wrapped in biscuit dough have been tradition since the 1950s. Perhaps you want a fluffy, soft and light blanket. Try this one for breakfast: “Pigs in a Blanket” savory breakfast sausages wrapped inside pancakes. Drizzle with syrup or honey and YUM!
Cozy Pigs in a Blanket
     Want to get away from the dough and pancakes? Think veggie! Much healthier and can even be served for lunch or supper. How about a neat idea for a covered dish to take to 'Sunday dinner on the grounds'? Try these little Pigs in the Blanket”: stuffed cabbage rolls. 
Stuffed Cabbage Rolls
    How about a double piggie? In the United Kingdom, Pigs in the Blanket” refer to small sausages wrapped in bacon. OMG! Anything is better with bacon! If you really need a recipe, click HERE!
Bacon-Wrapped Sausages
     Enjoy one or more kinds of "Pigs in the Blanket" today! Invite some friends over, have a party!
BONUS Recipe of the Day...actually not just one, but three!


yum, yum, yum . . . yummy!

Library of Libraries

This Day in History: April 24, 1800

From then...
Construction of the Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., April 19, 1893
Image Source: History of the Library
The first proposition for creating a congressional library is credited to James Madison in 1783. The Library of Congress was established by an act of Congress on April 24, 1800. President John Adams signed a bill providing for the transfer of the seat of government from Philadelphia to the new capital city of Washington.The first library provided a reference library for Congress only, containing "such books as may be necessary for the use of Congress - and for putting up a suitable apartment for containing them therein…" 

The initial books, ordered from London, arrived in 1801. The first library catalog, dated April 1802, listed 964 volumes and nine maps. After the original library was lost to fire during the War of 1812, congress purchased Thomas Jefferson's personal library (6,487 volumes). In 1851, a second fire destroyed about two-thirds of the then existing 55,000 volumes. Within a few years, the majority of the books were replaced, except for those, of course, that were irreplaceable.

'Til now...
Library of Congress Thomas Jefferson Building 2010
Image Source: Library of Congress Photos

Today's Library of Congress is an unparalleled world resource. It is the research library that officially serves the United States Congress, but which is the de facto national library of the United States. The collection of more than 158 million items includes more than 36 million cataloged books and other print materials in 460 languages; more than 69 million manuscripts; the largest rare book collection in North America; and the world's largest collection of legal materials, films, maps, sheet music and sound recordings. 

When photography became the hot new item in the mid-1800s, images were added vividly representing life and the world. A Prints & Photographs Division takes care of 14 million of the Library's pictures and features more than one million through online catalogs. Historical photo collections are shared through Flickr providing a wider accessibility to some of the most popular images.

Inside the Library...

Library of Congress Great Hall

Magnificent, isn't it?

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Where Do Broken Hearts Go

Today in Music History: April 23, 1988

In the spotlight: Whitney Houston (1963–2012)

1988, April 23, Whitney Houston, American recording artist, singer, actress, producer, and model, becomes the first artist to hit #1 on US Hot 100 with seven consecutive singles as 'Where Do Broken Hearts Go' hits the top. Previous record holders (with six each) were the Beatles and the Bee Gees. Whitney becomes the second only recording artist to release four #1s from the same LP. Her first four albums, released between 1985 and 1992, amassed global sales in excess of 86 million copies.

In Whitney's first film, 'The Bodyguard,' she proved her adversity to everyone worldwide. 'The Bodyguard', went on to become the biggest international film in Warner Bros. history. How much did the movie gross?

400 million dollars
Whitney always felt a need to give back to the country that blessed her with the fulfillment of lifelong dreams. In what year did she establish the Whitney Houston Foundation for Children?

The Whitney Houston Foundation for Children is a non-profit organization. It promotes a positive self-image and provides opportunities for children to grow and learn in supportive environments. The foundation benefits the homeless, children with AIDS, children's literacy, and the prevention of child abuse.
During Whitney's time in the music industry, she has won the respect of fans and many of her peers. She has broken many records and became in such a short time...a living legend. How many Emmy Awards did Whitney win?

Not stopping there however, Whitney has received as of 2000: 5 Grammy Awards, 19 American Music Awards, 5 People's Choice Award's, and 16 Billboard Music Awards, and that's just to name a few.
Source: Fun Trivia : Houston, Whitney

Outta' the ballpark!

This Day in History: April 23, 1954 

Life, hot dogs and baseball
Hot apple pie topped with ice cream
Ah-h-h-h! Those American classics
Sad day had their visions not been seen! 

We love "Baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and Chevrolet!" They go together like peanut butter and jelly, salt and pepper, peas and carrots, cookies and milk, sugar and spice. They are icons of America and always put a smile on your face, especially when listening or watching the most memorable car commercial ever made. The famed commercial, "Love Affair," had the nation singing in 1974, changing car commercials and automotive branding forever. America's love affair in '74 definitely targeted baseball, hot dogs, apple pie and the Chevrolet. They epitomized America.

It's not the Chevy, however, that made history on this day, but baseball. So, let's shift gears and head on down to the ball park. But, first, don't forget to have a slice of Mom's homemade apple pie fresh-baked, from scratch and still hot right out of the oven. Not that we need anything to get our adrenalin pumping but what can I say? Mom made it!

Anyway, back on the road...

Excitement fills the air with thoughts buzzing of sitting in the stands, cheering, yelling at the umpire when he leans across home plate as the nation gasps waiting for the call. Then, of course, there is also the chance of bases loaded, bottom of the ninth, full count, here comes the pitch…

Food is always front and center and nothing better than a ballpark hotdog (not the brand name but baseball stadium hot dogs) topped with extra mustard and relish. You could smell them all the way from the car to the stadium seats. I can hear the vendor now, "
Get 'em while they're hot! Hot dogs! Hot dogs! Get 'em while they're hot!
This day, April 23, 1954, turned out to be a special day. A day that initiated a home run record that would go on to beat that of Babe Ruth! This occurred when Hank Aaron of the Milwaukee Braves hits his first major league home run in a game against the St. Louis Cardinals. This was the first of 755 home runs. The Braves won, 7-5. The most memorable of his home runs came on April 8, 1974, when Hank Aaron hit No. 715, the one that surpassed the legendary Babe Ruth. During the winter of 1973, Aaron endured hate mail and death threats from people who did not want to see him break Ruth's home run record. Aaron's record stood until 2007, when it was broken by Barry Bonds, who was later implicated in a steroids scandal.

"My motto was to always keep swinging.  Whether I was in a slump or feeling badly or having trouble off the field, the only thing to do was keep swinging." -HANK AARON

Who, What, I Don't Know  

Let's just play baseball!


Creamy, Tangy & Sweet


Okay, all you foodies, time to celebrate...


...not chocolate but probably the next best thing - CHEESECAKE! Not just any cheesecake but cherry cheesecake because today is...

Pure decadence!
 …and if you really want to be creative, add a brownie crust! That way you have your cheesecake and chocolate, too! (See Recipe of the Day below.)

Where did the idea of cheesecake originate?
Cheesecake is a beloved dessert around the world. While many assume that it has its origins in New York, it actually dates back much further. Let's go back over 4,000 years to ancient Greece! Sit back, grab a creamy slice of cheesecake and learn all about this dessert’s rich history.
Source: History of Cheesecake

Cheesecake in the buff!
A bit of cherry American history...
The United States has historically been the largest exporter of cherries worldwide. In the United States, most sweet cherries are grown in Washington, California, Oregon, and Northern Michigan. Sweet cherry cultivars include "Bing", "Brooks", "Tulare", "King" and "Rainier". In addition, the Lambert variety is grown on the eastern side of Flathead Lake in northwestern Montana. Both Oregon and Michigan provide light-colored "Royal Ann" ('Napoleon'; alternately "Queen Anne") cherries for the maraschino cherry process. Most sour (also called tart) cherries are grown in Michigan, followed by Utah, New York, and Washington. Native and non-native cherries grow well in Canada (Ontario and British Columbia). Sour cherries include Nanking and Evans Cherry. Traverse City, Michigan claims to be the "Cherry Capital of the World", hosting a National Cherry Festival and making the world's largest cherry pie.
Source: American as Cherry Cheesecake
We all know there is an art to baking a 'from scratch' cheesecake. It is not the easiest food task to accomplish and certainly known to be time consuming. So, for all the foodies who love the cheesecake but do not have, or simply do not want to take the time, try the no-bake cheesecake. Recipe included!

Recipe of the Day

 Of course, it is the Brownie Cherry Cheesecake! Did you expect anything different?

Going, going...

Is your mouth watering yet? Click Recipe of the Day, name of the recipe, or the image above OR simply click HERE for the recipe! 
No way you can miss it! Get to work and get it made...ENJOY!

yum, yum, yum . . . yummy!