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.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Marvelous Month of March

Within the month of March comes celebration after celebration abounding before, during and after the famous St. Patrick's Day. Of course, signs of SPRING are already in the picture as Mother Nature's Delights bring forth sunshine inside and out on the last of the cold wintry days. First buds in some regions of the nation have already begun to appear with speck after speck of green peeping out from the cold, cold ground.
As we move into a new month, let's see what's happenin' in the Marvelous Month of March...

Irish-American Heritage Month

Image Source: Irish-American Flags Poster
Irish-American Heritage Month* is a special proclamation issued yearly since 1991 by the United States President or Congress to honor the achievements and contributions of Irish immigrants and their descendants living in the United States. This heritage month coincides with the Irish national holiday on March 17, Saint Patrick's Day, which celebrates all things Irish. 
[*Heritage Months are usually proclaimed to celebrate centuries of contributions by a group to a country. Check out A Bit of the Irish!]
March is also...
http://alicefest.org/womens-history-month/Women have struggled throughout history to become recognized for their talents, contributions, courage, and equal rights outside the confines of the everyday household. Many accomplishments would not have ever come to fruition had it not been for the perseverance of women. They have earned their place in history books, curriculum, museums, projects, and so much more. March is designated as Women's history month to coincide with International Women's Day on March 8.

While we all know we should eat right every day and hound our children to eat balanced meals, we do not always practice what we preach. With this month being recognized as National Nutrition Month, perhaps a little more effort could be put forth toward balanced nutrition for both body and mind. "Bite into a Healthy Lifestyle" is the theme for National Nutrition Month® 2015.
Here are a few GREAT ways to begin...

5 ways to dive into National Nutrition Month

8 ways to celebrate National Nutrition Month

Seven Simple Ways to Eat Healthier

That's just a start...take a look at all of these other reasons to celebrate:

  • National Noodle Month
  • National Peanut Month
  • National Sauce Month
  • National Caffeine Awareness Month
  • National Celery Month
  • National Flour Month
  • National Frozen Food Month
    PLUS...Chocolate Chip Cookie Week is the second week of the month, American Chocolate Week is the third week.

Aren't you  READY for March?

Spring is in the air!

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Leap for Surf 'n' Turf

February 29 comes only every four years and 2016 is the year when you get to celebrate a bonus 24 hours! Tomorrow you are about to regain precious minutes missed over the past four years. Don't regard this as just another day but examine ways in which you can make it memorable. 

Funny, serious, entertaining...it's your choice. Do something you have been wanting to do for a long time or complete an unfinished task. Spend extra time with your loved ones, make this a special day for your kids. You know you can even make it educational and let them know exactly what makes a year leap with an extra day once every four years. Hey, how much do you know about leap year?

Whatever you decide to do, plan a family lunch or dinner night out because

February 29 is...
National Surf 'n' Turf Day

Image source: wikipedia.com
While the mention of surf 'n' turf immediately salivates mouth-watering visions of the classic filet Mignon and lobster, you don't have to be constrained to simply that combination. You can create your own from a variety of seafood and varied choices of meat. For example, do you prefer pork to beef? Try pairing crab cakes, scallops or shrimp with pork chops. After all, by definition, surf 'n' turf simply pairs seafood with meat!
Rather have a hot dog?
An obscure, old-school, unique-to-Philly hot dog concoction involving a grilled, smashed fish cake and a hot dog on the same bun, topped with mustard and sometimes pepper hash - a sweet, mayo-less cousin to cole slaw that's also unique to Philly. Don't live in the Philly area? Come up with your on surf 'n' turf dog!
Perhaps make your own burger...

Surf 'n' Turf Burger (Recipe)

 It's really hard to beat a good ol' sandwich!

 Surf 'n' Turf Sandwich (Recipe)

 Love pizza? Go for it!

 Surf 'n' Turf Pizza (Recipe)

Maybe ribs are more to your liking...

Beer-Braised Ribs with Clams (Recipe)

Don't forget the chicken!

 Land and Sea White Meat Version of Surf & Turf (Recipe)

Still prefer the beef but rather prepare at home?

Surf and Turf for Two (Recipe)

You know there HAS TO BE DESSERT!

 A Surf and Turf Dessert (Recipe)

Your mouth really must be watering...

Leap for Surf 'n' Turf!


Related Articles:

Monday, February 22, 2016

Last Week of February

Because of my husband's illness and sudden surgery, it is necessary for me to take (hopefully) a short break. 

For the last week of February through the 28th, let me to guide you to my Pinterest Board What's Happenin' in February. With this being a leap year, the 29th will just have to wait!

For Music Memories... there are nearly 300 memorable recording artists and songs to revisit.

Life without music is life without a soul. 
Songs are epitomized in the first yawn of the morning to the last kiss goodnight, 
from the bewitching midnight hour to the breaking light of dawn. 
Identify with your own special kind of music as you visit music through the centuries.

Nutty & Fruity

Nuts. What a great snack...so much so we go nuts for nuts! Almonds, peanuts, pistachios, cashews, pecans, walnuts and more. They are so versatile. Excellent just to eat by themselves packed with heart-healthy fats and protein and super to add to favorite dishes or baking. Then, there is fruit. Fruit and nuts make a terrific combination, especially when that fruit is the banana, which is quite possibly the world's perfect food. Am I making you hungry? Then, let's get to work and get something go-o-o-o-o-od made! Of course, if you don't prefer the nuts, go plain banana!

February 23 is...

National Banana Bread Day

There are many variations on the classic banana bread introduced during the Great Depression. Since times were hard, money scarce, no one threw away food. Could it be this delightful bread was a result of a housewife not wanting the throw away overripe bananas? With the star ingredient being the banana, the add-ins adhere strictly to personal taste, whether chocolate chips, berries, nuts or whatever you desire. Go for it!

Various recipes on the Classic Banana Bread

Double the fiber, double the fruit (Recipe)

Peanut Butter Banana Bread (Recipe)

Banana Bread - makes 12-14 5″ pieces (Recipe)

Hawaiian Banana Bread (Recipe)

Banana Nut Bread from Epicurious (Recipe)

Meyer Lemon & Ginger Banana Bread Mini Muffins (Recipe)

Banana Bread Cupcakes (Recipe)

♫Music Memories♫

Music of the 50s and 60s is legendary. There is probably hardly a day during either decade that a song did not make the charts and become one of America's favorites. These are the eras of the classics whose songs have been covered by various recording artists many, many times. Some remained on the pop charts while others crossed over into country. Regardless of genre, the music is here to stay! For a brief walk down memory lane, here are a few nostalgic tunes from the charts and recordings of...

Today in Music History: February 22

1956  Elvis Presley entered the music charts for the first time with
"Heartbreak Hotel."


1960  Theme from A Summer Place lyrics were written by Mack Discant and music composed by Max Steiner for the 1959 film A Summer Place. It was the Percy Faith version which became the most popular version starting a 9-week run at No.1 on the US chart with 'Theme From A Summer Place' a No.2 hit in the UK.

1967  "A Day in the Life" is a song by the English rock band The Beatles written by John Lennon and Paul McCartney, based on an original idea by Lennon, recorded on this day in 1967. It is the final track on the group's 1967 album Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band. 

 1969 Recorded on February 22, "I want You (She's So Heavy)" is from the album Abbey Road released on September 26, 1969 in the United Kingdom and October 1, 1969 in the United States.

 1969 Two Elvis Presley songs were recorded at American Sound Studios in Memphis, TN which continued to help pave the road to the evolution of the modern R&B. They were "Who am I?" and "In the Ghetto".



1986 MTV dedicated a full 22 hours broadcast to The Monkees, showing all 45 episodes of the original The Monkees TV series.

What are your fondest memories?

And the music goes on beating to the rhythm of the changing times...

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Have your drink & eat it, too!

Within the foodie celebrations are often beverages that can be enjoyed during holiday seasons, social gatherings, or simply for personal enjoyment. Many often become the basis for varying appetizers and desserts. Um-m-m-m? Have your drink & eat it, too! 

February 22 is...

Very few social drinks are as widely known as the margarita. Frozen or slushy, salted rim or on the rocks, this frosty, citrusy cocktail can be quite irresistible. Good times in a glass!

Origin of the Margarita...

The original Margarita was invented in 1948 by socialite Margarita Sames. According to the legend it was during a party at her hacienda in Acapulco that Margarita began experimenting with ‘the drink’. Looking for something to cut the dust of a hot afternoon, she mixed Tequila Herradura, Cointreau and fresh lime juice. Her cocktail kept the party going for two weeks and today the Margarita is the #1 most popular cocktail in the U.S.
(Source: Imbibe.com)

  • Americans drink around 185,000 margaritas per hour.
  • The first frozen margarita machine (1971) was based on a soft-serve ice cream machine.
  • In 2008, the margarita was the most popularly ordered drink (18% of all U.S. mixed drink sales).
  • The U.S. is the No.1 tequila market...larger & more important than Mexico.
  • Margarita means daisy in Spanish. 
  • The world's largest margarita - 8500 gals - was made in Las Vegas in 2011. 

11 Refreshing Facts About Margaritas for National Margarita Day


Margarita Recipes

Classic margarita recipes are sweet and sour, feature great tequila, and sometimes even beer. Find them all right here.
The title of this post invites you to have your drink & eat it, too! So, on to the eating part...
 Margarita Grilled Shrimp (Recipe)

 Crab Margarita & MORE (Recipes)
Margarita Pie (Recipe)

Margarita Cupcakes (Recipe)

 While preparing the cocktail, appetizer or dessert, be sure to have some Margaritaville music on full force!

Put on your thinking caps!

There are times when we just don't want to 'think about it'! Minds seek rest where thoughts become totally benign OR happenin's in our lives just need to be set aside for awhile...a change of pace, a different atmosphere. The upcoming celebration is a great way to put on your thinking caps for a special group of girls setting aside all other thoughts of the day! Step away from everything going on in your life at the moment and support Girl Guides and Girl Scouts around the world!
February 22 is...
Image Source: en.wikipedia.org

World Thinking Day

World Thinking Day has been celebrated every year since 1926, and has been an important fundraising day since 1932. It’s a day about friendship, advocacy, and fundraising – all to support over 10 million Girl Guides and Girl Scouts around the world.

What a great idea for a special day!

This special day is celebrated in several ways. Girl Guides and Girl Scouts learn about their international sisters around the world. They participate in entertaining, educational activities based on the year’s advocacy theme. Past themes have included education, hunger & poverty, gender equality, and environmental sustainability. Fundraising is also an integral part of this day. Money that is donated will help girls learn new skills, take action on issues important to them, and help them develop as global citizens.
The theme for 2016 is "Connect", which is very important in this day and age with so many false connections thanks to social media. After all, Girl Scouts are part of a special network of girls that stretches across the world. Now that's what I call connections! Lastly, on this day Girl Scouts can earn their World Thinking Day badge! Celebrate today by supporting your local Girl Scout Troop or making a direct donation to the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts.
 Just another way of saying thank you for those delicious Girl Scout cookies attributed to a simple sugar cookie recipe created in 1922! The whole operation initially started in 1917 with a troop holding a small bake sale in Muskogee, Oklahoma selling sugar cookies. In 1933, you could buy 44 cookies for 23 cents. Support the Girl Guides and Girl Scouts today!

#1. Thin Mints — $175 million in revenue as of 2011
WORLD Thinking Day of years past...