Monthly Archives: May 2012

Do NOT Enter!

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The temperature is on the rise and so are the number of home break ins. I read my hometown newspaper online each day and the number of people whose homes are being broken into really makes me sad. There was a recent case in which a group of 3 men rang a couples door bell late in the evening  and robbed them at gun point in their own home. If we can’t feel safe at home, where can we feel safe?

Many studies have shown that home break ins are highest in summer. I am assuming this is because of the number of people on vacation along with the boredom of students being out of school for summer leading them into getting in trouble.

Although you may live in a nice neighborhood or out in the country, you still are at risk of becoming a victim. Make sure you prepare yourself and your home for any situation…

Below are 4 easy ways to help keep your home safe:

1. Do not showcase pricey items: Rearrange your furniture to ensure pricey items such as flat screen TVs, computers and other electronics are not visible from the road.

2. Leave lights, televisions, and radios on: Making burglars think you are home will make them less likely to rob you.

3. Lock ALL doors and windows: I know it may seem simple but even if you are only to a neighbor’s house make sure you lock your doors and windows. This is one of the easiest steps in reducing break ins because you never know who is watching.

4. Keep spare keys inside: Thieves look for spare keys out doors (it makes their job easier). Give your spare key to a family member or neighbor in case of an emergency.

Memorial Day Weekend!

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Memorial Day is a day in which we remember those who have lost their lives fighting for our country. This Monday, we observe the federal holiday.  I can’t wait to show off my new bathing suit at the pool while grilling out  and catching up with some long time friends.  Memorial Day weekend is one of the busiest weekends for drivers. Beach trips, parades, and barbecues are a few popular destinations for the holiday. While enjoying your three day weekend, be sure to keep in mind those who lost their lives serving our country and also be aware of other drivers while on the road.

Keep driving fatalities down by these easy steps (I know they are common sense but just thought I’d remind you):

-Focus on one thing and one thing only…DRIVING

-Do not text and drive

-Do not speed

-Do not drink and drive

-Watch for motorcyclists

Now that you made it to the party….what are you going to eat?!

Southern Grilled Barbecued Ribs

Ingredients

  • 4 pounds baby back pork ribs
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1/3 cup red wine vinegar
  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 cup cider vinegar
  • 1/3 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 1/4 cup prepared mustard
  • 4 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon hot pepper sauce
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Place ribs in two 10×15 inch roasting pans. Pour water and red wine vinegar into a bowl, and stir. Pour diluted vinegar over ribs and cover with foil. Bake in the preheated oven for 45 minutes. Baste the ribs with their juices halfway through cooking.
  2. In a medium saucepan, mix together ketchup, water, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, mustard, butter, brown sugar, hot pepper sauce, and salt; bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low, cover, and simmer barbeque sauce for 1 hour.
  3. Preheat grill for medium heat.
  4. Lightly oil preheated grill. Transfer ribs from the oven to the grill, discarding cooking liquid. Grill over medium heat for 15 minutes, turning ribs once. Baste ribs generously with barbeque sauce, and grill 8 minutes. Turn ribs, baste again with barbeque sauce, and grill 8 minutes.

and what are you going to wash your food down with?

Easy Raspberry Lemonade

ADULTS CAN ADD VODKA

Ingredients

  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can frozen raspberry lemonade concentrate
  • 3 cups water
  • 3/4 teaspoon lime juice
  • 1 (12 fluid ounce) can or bottle lemon-lime flavored carbonated beverage
  • 1 cup crushed ice
  • 1 cup fresh raspberries, garnish
  • 18 Mint leaves, for garnish (optional)

Directions

  1. In a large punch bowl, combine raspberry lemonade concentrate, water and lime juice. Stir in lemon-lime soda and crushed ice. Garnish each glass with a fresh raspberry and a mint leaf.

and for dessert?

Wave Your Flag Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 quart strawberries, divided
  • 1 1/2 cups boiling water
  • 1 pkg. (8 serving size) JELL-O Brand Gelatin, any red flavor
  • Ice cubes
  • 1 cup cold water
  • 1 (12 ounce) package pound cake, cut into 10 slices
  • 1 1/3 cups blueberries, divided
  • 1 (8 ounce) tub COOL WHIP Whipped Topping, thawed

Directions

  1. Slice 1 cup of the strawberries; set aside. Halve remaining strawberries; set aside.
  2. Stir boiling water into dry gelatin mix in large bowl 2 minutes until completely dissolved. Add enough ice to cold water to measure 2 cups. Add to gelatin; stir until ice is melted. Refrigerate 5 minutes or until slightly thickened (consistency of unbeaten egg whites). Meanwhile, line bottom of 13×9-inch dish with cake slices. Add sliced strawberries and 1 cup of the blueberries to thickened gelatin; stir gently. Spoon over cake slices.
  3. Refrigerate 4 hours or until firm. Spread whipped topping over gelatin. Arrange strawberry halves on whipped topping for ‘stripes’ of ‘flag.’ Arrange remaining 1/3 cup blueberries on whipped topping for ‘stars.’ Store leftover cake in refrigerator.

Don’t forget to keep the kids entertained..

-Set up a sprinkler in the yard or get a slip and slide

-Create a Memorial Day obstacle course

-Have a Memorial Day treasure hunt

-Hide and Seek

-Anything fun outdoors to get them out of your hair!

Finish the night with some beautiful fireworks…

A Walk (or Run) a Day Keeps the Doctor Away

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One thing I have started doing is taking daily walks. I prefer to go in the morning because it is a great way to jump start my day however,  when I have trouble getting out of bed I go after work. The time of day is totally up to you, just make sure you do it! Studies have proven that simply walking (or jogging)  just 15-30 minutes a day can have substantial health benefits. Whether you find a walking buddy or jam out to your iPod put a little pep in your step!

Happy Friday!

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I don’t know about you but my favorite day of the week is Friday! Friday is the only day of the week  I get super excited about. After a busy work week I just love getting off , having an adult beverage or two, and knowing I get to sleep in the next two days. (not that I ever sleep past 9 but hey I can sit in my pjs all day) Well there’s nothing much to this blog entry just wanted to say Happy Friday!!! Have a wonderful and safe weekend.

Crazy Dog

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Anyone who tells you raising a puppy is easy LIED!  My parents have always had done such a great job of training their dogs that I guess I assumed I would catch on just as easily. I mean how hard could it be to teach a dog right from wrong. The answer my friends is VERY HARD!!!

My friend Piper kept hassling me about getting a puppy. “You live by yourself,” or  ” let’s go look at puppies,” and of course when when would go you’d feel bad for the dogs. On the other side my dad has never thought it was a good idea for me to get a dog. I’ve lived by myself  for almost 6 years and anytime I would bring up the D word my dad would cut me off “you aren’t home enough to raise a dog” and “they take a lot of work and cost money.”

Well guess what people, I got a dog. My dad is a smart man I don’t know why i didn’t listen to him. Dogs are a lot of work. I have had almost every room in my apartment peed and pooped on, endless numbers of shoes, phone and computer chargers chewed up, and get woken up nearly every night because my pup is chewing up something or needs to potty.

Don’t get me wrong, I love my puppy to death. He loves to ride in the car, play fetch and go on long jogs and walks with me.  He is 9 months old so he is still in the puppy phase but I still think he needs a  little help in the discipline area. I rarely spank him, he hardly ever listens to me, and jumps on people when they come in the door. There is no reason what so ever that I shouldn’t be the boss in my own house. My boyfriend is always saying “I told you not to get a dog.” People joke that if I can’t control my dog then how the hell am I going to control my kids. And thats when it hit me…time to teach Phoenix who’s boss!!

Piper and Phoenix

One of Phoenix’s victims

Phoenix sunbathing on the porch

Working Woman Workout

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So I’m not even going to lie…some days are definitely better than others. Today I am having one of those “I can’t win” Wednesdays. I woke up and my dog was not listening at all, I lost my favorite pair of sunglasses,  I got to work and had to redo some articles that I worked very hard on , and on top of all of that…I have been feeling a little queasy all day. Needless to say, today I am just not really feeling it. I want to go back to bed and try over.

For days like today I am excited my coworker introduced me to a boot camp class right up the street. I know what you are thinking…’what would this girl wanna go take a boot camp class if she’s having “one of those days” ‘? Well to be honest it helps me relieve stress. I’m already trying to shape up so why not try something like this? When I did my internship at a gym I loved boot camp but I was usually working when they offered it. Now I am able to go  Monday and Wednesday after work and on Saturday morning. It is an awesome way to switch up my normal  daily jogs with my puppy. Boot camp is the perfect class for someone who needs a little extra motivation.  At first it is certainly a challenge but once you go a few times you not only feel better but you can also see how much more in shape you have gotten. If you are going to try a fitness class, it is crucial to remember that you HAVE to go every day it is offered to get maximum results.Fitness is something people are lacking in their daily lives. I know we can all have hectic schedules but I’m pretty sure you have an extra 30 mins-an hour to spare to improve your health.

These 4 things I have found are VERY important when working out:
1.  Drink Water- Even if you aren’t thristy make sure you are constantly keeping yourself hydrated.

2. Don’t Over Do It- Push yourself but do not do more than your body is capable of.

3. Keep Breathing- Some people forget to breathe when working out, this can raise your blood pressure severely. Ideally- breath in your nose and out of your mouth.

4. Stretch-  Stretching helps reduce soreness especially when you are starting something new.

Can’t make it to the gym? Try this routine for beginners I found from http://evilcyber.com in your own home:

Body Part Exercise Comment
Chest / Triceps 3 sets of push-ups, as many as you can do, with 60 seconds rest between sets The exercise is explained in this video, which also contains pointers on what to do when you can’t do a full push-up yet.
Back / Biceps 3 sets of pull-ups, as many as you can do, with 60 seconds rest between sets If you don’t have a pull-up bar, this article has very many suggestions for possible substitutes.
If you can’t do a full pull-up yet, this video will guide you from negative chin-ups to your first full pull-up and beyond.
Legs Three sets of lunges, as many as you can do, with 60 seconds rest between sets. ExRx has a good explanation of the exercise right here. Start with no weight to learn the movement and then gradually add resistance, while making sure you keep good form.
When you need additional resistance, you can use dumbbells or, if you don’t have any, milk gallons filled with water.
Legs (optional) Three sets of hamstring curls, 6 – 12 repetitions, with 60 seconds rest between sets If you feel your hamstrings don’t get enough work from doing lunges, you may add hamstring curls.They are explained in this video.
Abs Three sets of crunches, 6-12 repetitions, with 60 seconds rest between sets The exercise is explained right here. Note that the hands do not pull on the head; fixate a spot right above you when you do the movement.

International Day of Families

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Ever heard of family day? Neither have I…until today! May 15th is a date in which countries of the United  Nations observe International Day of Families. Dating back to May 15, 1995, the International Day of Families is a day in which people of the UN focus on the importance of balancing work and family. Specifically, it stresses the significance  in financially and emotionally contributions of workers to their families while  consistently adding to the growth of the society. Celebrations include workshops, meetings, and campaigns focused on the strength of family support systems. Although here in a America this is nothing we celebrate, I think it is very important for all working professionals to keep in mind how lucky we are to have careers and families. It is important to always keep a tight balance of the two and continuously strengthen our efforts to grow in both aspects of our lives.