Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Valuable Wedding Day Guest List Advice

In the midst of the anticipation and excitement of planning a wedding, it is only natural to want everyone to share in your special day. Your family, your friends, your co-workers, your neighbors, your doctor, your dry cleaner, your kindergarten teacher, your prom date, the cheerleader who stole your boyfriend….you get the picture. You become so enthralled with thinking of every person you would want to see you looking gorgeous strutting down the isle, you totally lose sight of reality. That is, until you calculate your 300 guests times cost per plate and reality slaps you in the face. Now you have the daunting tasks of who to take off the guest list. These tips should help make the decision a little easier.

  • Do NOT invite anyone who does not know the both of you– Guests should be able to speak about the couple, not just you. Even if they only know your significant other through pics posted on Facebook and quick chats over the phone..something is better than nothing.
  • Do NOT invite anyone you have not called, e-mailed, or spoken to in the last year– The fact that you have not remained in touch with this person indicates they are not that important to you and do not need to attend your wedding.
  • Do NOT invite all of your parents and soon to be in-laws guests– This is YOUR wedding, not theirs. Your guests should be people that you truly love and care about, not some obligatory list based on who your parents feel should attend.

Using this process, you will wade through all of the names and faces; and allow yourself to really invite the guest who mean the most to you. At surface it may seem harsh, but when you look back at your wedding photos ten years later, you don’t want to have to say “Who’s the girl in the purple dress?” Besides, it not about who you didn’t invite, it’s about who you did invite that makes the occassion memorable.

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How to Write Onomatopoeia Poetry

Onomatopoeia poems are lots of fun and can be very creative. First, do you know how to pronounce this word? If you haven’t heard this word before, look it up in the dictionary or wikipedia.

Onomatopeia poems use words that imitates the sound or feelings it represents. It brings out the feeling of how something looks or how something sounds. Let’s look at the following sentences that describes a rainy day:

“The rain splattered” all over my windows. What picture forms in your mind when you see the word spattered? Does it make you feel the rain came down smoothly or did the rain come down in all directions? When I wrote this poem, I used the word splatter to show that when the rain landed on the window, it scattered its drops in different directions.

If I were to use the word splash instead of splatter, what feeling do you get this time? Think about it. splash gives you a different feeling than splatter. The rain splashed all over the window gives you the feeling that the rain came down quite hard when it hit the window and it spread water all over.

It squirted water in every direction. It gushed down the driveway and squashed my little kitten as the drops slid down the driveway. Notice that each of the words used here, gives you a certain feeling about the rain. This is what onomatopoeia poems try to do.

What comes to your mind when you hear the phase, “The rain squirted down the driveway? Think of a faucet when the water is coming through. When you put your fingers on the faucet, depending on hard you press on it, you can make the water come out in squirts.

Lets look at the first verse of this poem and see if you get the feeling of rain and how it is coming down.

The rain splattered over my windows
It splashed in every direction
It squirted like it came through a water gun

Now let’s take a look at the word gush. This word denotes that the rain is coming down quite heavily. It came down quite heavily down the driveway. The word squash lets the reader know that it came down so hard that it squashed the cat.

Let’s read the whole poem so that you can get the understanding of onomatopoeia poetry.

Notice that each of the words used here, gives you a certain feeling about the rain. This is what onomatopoeia poems try to do.

Here is another example of onomatopoeia poetry which uses words that express anger. Mr. Jones hissed at the growling salesperson. He was so angry he roared and growled for a half an hour.

Here is an example of two boys who were fighting: Max was so angry he roared and snapped his teeth at Paul. Their argument was so heated that Max banged Paul on the head. They whamed and whacked at each other for a long time.

Now let’s see if you can make up a few sentences using words that express the following feelings: sadness, happiness, anger, surprise. For example for sadness, you could use such words as weep, sniffled, and whimpered, After you have made up your sentences, see if you can make up a little poem from any one of the words you used.

Tags:How to Write Onomatopoeia Poetry

Winchester Mansion in California

Here’s you a story of a man and his son
The man invented the Winchester gun.
From the late 1800’s in many hands
Causing many deaths, across the land.

Oliver Winchester was a millionaire
Owed to this gun, and each time it fired.
His son William worked with his dad
Soon to own all the business he had.

William fell in love with Sarah Pardee
They married, and started a family.
One month after their daughter was born
Her small life ended, leaving Sarah forlorn.

Oliver Winchester died at seventy years old
One year later, son William died, we’re told.
Twenty million dollars, Sarah had received
But all the money could not stop her grief.

She went to psychics to communicate
With her husband who had met his fate.
Many mediums were called to her house,
But only one contacted her late spouse.

He was with spirits-victims of the guns
They made sure their wish was done
He told her what they wanted her to do
The spirits would control her every move.

Her instructions were very clear from him
The spirits were angry with all of them.
The spirits of ones who lost their lives
And she would be cursed if she didn’t abide

Her first instruction was to move out west
And build a house for the spirits and herself
To California, in Clara Valley she went
An eight room house she bought for them.

Instructions explicit, keep building for years
If construction stops, the curse would be severe
Workers every day, construction no limit
Worked on a job that couldn’t be finished.

The spirits gave instructions as they went along
Staircases going nowhere, some short, some long
Different shaped rooms, and the number thirteen
Was used in stairs, windows, most everything.

Sarah died at eighty two, finally joined her spouse
160 room mansion was once an 8 room house.
After Sarah’s death, all these spirits remained
The mansion wasn’t finished, but it was claimed.


Tags:Winchester Mansion in California

Icy Weather Plagues West Texas in First Wintry Precipitation of the Season

In an extremely unusual occurrence, the west Texas oil city of Midland has experienced more than 48 hours of wintry weather, including precipitation, and the clouds continue to bring more in. A cold front that arrived in the wee hours of Friday morning began drizzling rain, sleet, and snow to create countless icicles from rooftops and coat cars and plants with ice. Though Midland Independent School District did not alter school schedules on Friday, additional time was given for students to arrive to campus at Midland High School to encourage safe, rather than hurried, driving.

Saturday saw more of the same, though only on Saturday evening did the real precipitation begin coming down, giving a true winter feel to the dreariness. On Sunday morning sidewalks, pavement, and virtually everything else was covered in a glaze of ice! This Midland High School teacher checked his school district e-mail to discover that, while school was still planned for Monday, district officials would be watching the weather and the ice to make final decisions.

The weather, fortunately, is expected to lift on Monday, reports The Weather Channel, bringing warmer temperatures and seeing some of the clouds depart.

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X3D Earth - the Future of 3D on the Web

Building on the success of previous work in bringing the next generation of 3D graphics for the web from concept to ISO approved standard with X3D 3D graphics for the web, the Web3D Consortium supports a number of working groups to pursue specialized domains that meet industry and academia needs. One of these efforts is the X3D Earth Working Group, which grew from the initial Geo-VRML or Geo-Spatial working group prior to the approval of the X3D standard in 2004. As with all Web3D Consortium working groups, the X3D Earth Working Group supports a collaborative environment that is driving to develop, advance, and build on an open standards framework to ultimately make it easier to use and create 3D Spatial data via open architectures.

X3D Earth Working Group

The X3D Earth Working Group Charter was approved by the Web3D Consortium in the spring of 2007. Work had been underway, however, for a number of years prior to this under the guise of the previously approved Geo-Spatial working group focused on work in the VRML standard. The primary difference with X3D, is that since it is XML based, the ability to expose data to use and manipulation via web services and other communications protocols makes the working groups efforts much more scalable that previously attempted.

X3D Earth is making a standards-based 3D visualization infrastructure for viewing all kinds of real-world information in a geospatial construct based on non-commercial standards. This ensures that the work is not contingent on the commercial viability of any one company and that it can remain repeatable and accessible for many years to come in the future. Just think, many computer users really enjoy the features that come with Google Earth. What would happen if Google went bankrupt, and we lost access to the application and all of the great data that drives it! Or, even worse, Google sold the data, but not the software to use it. Without an Open standards based approach, proprietary standards don’t help achieve the aim of sustainable technology over the long term. The aim is not to take away profits from industry (if you check the Web3D Consortium’s Board of Directors, you will see a lot of industry represented), but to make the technology be the driver of industry to make money through quality of service and applications development.

Goals of X3D Earth

The primary goal of the X3D Earth Working Group is to build a standards-based X3D Earth specification that can be used by industry, scientists, academia, government, and the general public. The X3D Earth Working Group has some specific technical objectives, which include:

1 – Building a backdrop X3D model of planet Earth

2 – Using public and private terrain datasets

3 – Using public and private imagery and cartography

4 – Able to interoperate among spatially aware implementations.

5 – Provide ‘linkable’ locations for any place

6 – Provide a means for physical models to integrate with the geospatial information

7 – Use open standards, extensions, and process

8 – Produce work that will operate in a platform independent manner

Current X3D Earth Research

The Naval Postgraduate School (NPS) has been working with the Web3D Consortium and industry partners in the development and implementation of X3D Earth. To that end, NPS hosts an X3D working site for X3D Earth work produced under open source license agreements. The site is hosted at: http://ift.tt/2f5U75g . The examples of work vary from the ‘Earth View’ down to the 1m resolution imagery level view of the Earth with research not only focused on how to ‘view’ the data, but also how to deliver on demand to the end-user and then do something with the information!


X3D Earth is just another example of another one of the great initiatives that the Web3D Consortium is facilitating to better the experience of 3D on the web for everyone! For more information on the current status of the working group, a good presentation to review is one given by Dr. Don Brutzman of the Naval Postgraduate school in May 2008

Tags:X3D Earth - the Future of 3D on the Web

007 Movies : Adele Sings "Skyfall" !

In a previous article , I had speculated about who would be featured in the upcoming third installment of the Daniel Craig cycle of James Bond movies. It’s true that I have been a big fan of the soundtrack themes that go back for a half century to the first entry, Dr. No. With the release of the twenty third official Bond epic, the secret is out that English songbird, Adele has recorded the title song for “Skyfall” and I could not be more pleased.

Born in Tottenham in North London in 1988, Adele was raised by her mother and showed an interest in music. She cites the Spice Girls as one of her early influences and also gives credit to a live performance by Pink as an inspiration. Adele was discovered and signed by XL Recordings after a friend posted her three song demos to the internet. Her first album , “19” made a big splash in Great Britain, but it was her appearance on “Saturday Night Live ” in 2008 that brought her to the attention of American audiences. Her follow up album was “21”, which harvested a slew of trophies and sales records including multiple Grammy Awards. On a cautionary note, Adele was touted by the British press as the “new Amy Winehouse”. Adele has chosen to cut back on her self admitted drinking problems and, instead, she is enjoying her superstar status and the fabulous wealth that goes with it.

The new theme for “Skyfall” harkens back to previous entries like “For Your Eyes Only” by Sheena Easton and “Tomorrow Never Dies” by Sheryl Crow.

“Skyfall”, the song, reminds me more of the Shirley Manson & Garbage ballad, “The World is Not Enough”, rather than some of the more bombastic efforts like Tom Jones belting out “Thunderball” or Shirley Bassey trumpeting “Goldfinger.”

With a release date of November 8, “Skyfall” is already generating anticipation by movie fans and music lovers. The Bond theme songs have boosted the careers of many music interpreters over the years, although it’s hard to say how the effect on Adele can further heighten her skyrocket to fame and fortune.

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01/20/11 Daily Dose of Nonsense

Scope it, as in Horoscope: Sometimes you just can’t get good news out of some stories. Admit it and move on.

Bonehead Tip of the Day: Perhaps when the new health care bill takes full effect, I will no longer have to wait in the “Waiting Room” to get other sicknesses from those I’m sitting next to while waiting.

The List: Tops in TV
1. “Packers/Falcons” – 30.8 million. Spillover from Jets/Pats below in notes.
2. “NCIS” – 21.9 million
3. “NCIS: Los Angeles” – 18.1 million
Source: Nielson. Other games to be reflected next week. However, look below for games.
Notes: Football has the formula that makes event TV thrive. Event TV is something I have been writing and discussing for more than 20 years. It’s the last episode of “MASH” and the like. When we get together to watch an event and make the ratings soar. Not much of that in the last ten years except for sporting events and, once in a while, a political event. You cannot take a political speech that is on many networks and compare it to one network airing a football game. For example, 31 million people watched the speech from Arizona (however, on many channels). Take a look at the Jets/Pats game where 43 million people tuned in – – that’s one channel.
– One more note: I’m still trying to figure out where ABC got the number 22 million for “Off The Map.” Hmmm. Did they run it four times in one week and they added it up? If that number was accurate it would have bumped “NCIS.” I have the debut episode at 7.6 million, roughly, and I mean roughly.
– Then there is that speech in Arizona. On cable, Fox led the way with 3.8 million viewers and none of the networks breakout ratings settled into the top 20. Added up, sure close to 31 million, but not as an individual station.

Trivia: Are you sure Aristotle was who we should go to for thought? He said hyenas lured dogs to their death by imitating the sound of a man vomiting. Meanwhile, the main export of the island nation of Nauru is bird droppings.

Closer: Ignore. Just ignore. Sometimes that’s the best advice anyone can give.

Tags:01/20/11 Daily Dose of Nonsense

007 Quantum of Solace

The review I am presenting is that the latest incarnation of the most entertaining videos of the famous secret agent, James Bond, played here by Daniel Craig.
The Gameplay

The game will be a common first-person shooter, where James Bond is to eliminate a lot of enemies to kill a boss that chases a long time. In some missions, must help a girl, Camille, as seen in the film. The game resumes that are equal to the plot of the film, but it is not the usual four transposition money, after all, that of James Bond is more than one shooter was successful. The missions riprenderrano the most disparate, and goals can not be monotonous. The places are, for example, Siena, Venice, Montenegro, Madagascar, chi più ne ha più ne metta! the only parcels and obvious defect is the lack of freedom of action granted to the player. I say this because Bond can not exceed even a small stone set between two columns to block the passage, and the feeling of being in a tunnel is very high. Given all the exciting game show, is never overly frustrating this situation.


Certainly is the most successful aspect of the game. This system is very similar to that already seen in Gears Of War, it just sees bond shelter, hold down the button, run to the shelter, which can fire safely. For greater accuracy we may project a little, and it is a necessary if you do not want to waste ammunition. Finally, we can also pull grenades. If we see another guard ahead and we can always point the button to crush bon can run the new shelter, with no “out” than when it was at that particular time. This allows you to not fall over in the monotony!
Body to Body

In addition to weapons, bond sa also give good cazzotti. In fact, if we move closer to enemies without us note, by clicking the right analog button, start a sequence where bond bare hands to attack the opponent. If we want to go out winners have to press the right buttons, otherwise leave it off for good menati.


In the game there are many weapons, ranging from pistols to order using Bond, the assault rifles of enemies. For all weapons have a silencer, and is given also choose whether to use a single shot or a burst (belonging to the guns). They are a pleasure to watch, given the excellent graphics of the game.


The multi-compartment consists of 12 maps and 7 modes, from a classic deathmatch games which follow the spirit of the series, with only one player in the shoes of Bond. The maps show a wavering quality but still a fun escape from the single player, who a few hours lengthen the life of Equal. If nothing else, it’s very different!

Tags:007 Quantum of Solace

08-09 Fantasy Basketball - FREE PRINTABLE CHEAT SHEET

Whether you are a fantasy basketball vet or just a rookie learning the ropes, the one thing that is essential to have at any fantasy basketball draft is a fantasy basketball cheat sheet with position rankings. Over the years I have used a cheat sheet religiously for all of my fantasy drafts and cannot imagine drafting my team without one. However the biggest problem I run into every year is finding a good cheat sheet to use.

Many times a printable fantasy basketball cheat sheet from websites only have one position per page ranking, which means I need to print off one page for the point guards, one page for the shooting guards, one page for the small forwards, and so on down the line for each position. To say it lightly, this is a major pain. So instead of relying on and using other websites for my cheat sheet, I have created my own all-in-one fantasy basketball cheat sheet that is printable and completely free.

To check out this fantasy basketball cheat sheet just click here:
Free Printable 2008-2009 Fantasy Basketball Cheat Sheet

With this customized all-in-one fantasy basketball cheat sheet you no longer have to print out 10 different pages with a different position on each one. This fantasy basketball cheat sheet has all positions (point guard, shooting guard, small forward, power forward, center, and even rookies) listed on a single page. More importantly this fantasy basketball cheat sheet has plenty of depth at each position so you do not have to worry about forgetting the lesser known players who may have breakout seasons and you want to take a chance on drafting. Also included in this all-in-one printable fantasy basketball cheat sheet is a section dedicated for your roster. With this section you can keep track of your team and write down your picks round by round.


Printing Directions:
To print this 2008-2009 Fantasy Basketball Cheat Sheet, just click here “2008-2009 FANTASY BASKETBALL CHEAT SHEET” or click on the link above in the article where it says “2008-2009 Fantasy Basketball Cheat Sheet.” A new webpage will open, so make sure you have your pop-up blocker disabled.
Right click anywhere on this page and select “print preview.”
Then select “page setup.”
Set all margins to 0.5 inches.
Select “portrait” for the page orientation.
Delete any headers and footers.
Click “ok.”
Lastly, make sure that the setting “shrink to fit” is selected on the print preview page so that all information is listed on one single page.
After checking all these settings you can print off your all-in-one 2008-2009 Fantasy Basketball Cheat Sheet.


Good luck at your draft and in your league this season!

Tags:08-09 Fantasy Basketball - FREE PRINTABLE CHEAT SHEET

08' Smart-Phone Rundown!

So, despite the economy you’re shopping for smart phones.

Well, you’ve came to the right place. I have decided to do a fall 2008 “Run Down” on some hot devices. At this time the Google G1 A.K.A “Android” is the only device that has been released so far. The Blackberry Storm was just delayed, although, it’s coming soon. The Touch HD is to be announced to the U.S market.

So, let’s get to it!

The Google G1 seems to slack in some areas, Although it does have the physical qwerty keyboard. This is a huge plus to some users, A lot of user’s with “stubby” fingers do not like the idea of touch screen keyboard’s. I seem to type faster on the touch screen keyboard’s, Although I have long fingers. I admit I’m more prone to typo on them, In exchange it slims the device down a good amount not having the physical keyboard. This phone is “Android” powered, Meaning that is a new software suite for us geeks to conquer, Making this is a popular phone. Although you will have to go to the T-Mobile network, I’m waiting for the later iteration’s, on more respectable networks.

The BlackBerry Storm, this device seems to sit right in the middle of the three. There is allot of buzz on this device being the “IPhone killer” but, that’s a label that’s been getting pasted on anything new with comparable features right now. This is a solid device if you like Windows Mobile, A very nice device for Blackberry fans, Those used to the IPhone’s interface might want to do their homework on this one. Windows Mobile is great for business, although if your looking for the fun gadget this one might not be for you.

The Touch HD, This device has allot of outstanding features, HTC may be using a “Bigger is Better” mindset. The main issue I have with this device is that its not on 3G, Taking those amazing 5.0 MP pictures and then sending them over the EDGE network sounds painful. In exchange, the display is amazing. Seems like a United States release is pretty far off, It also looks like it’s going to break whats left of your bank account. Some have claimed to have seen it around Germany’s Amazon.com for $8-900 USD. Ouch, I don’t even think my bank has that much left.

Tags:08’ Smart-Phone Rundown!

#1 Addiction in America: Performance Addiction

There are many addictions that plague our world today. Drug, sex, food, work, video games, gambling, shopping, and the Internet are to mention a few of the more popular addictions that are literally destroying people and families by the millions. Surprisingly though, one addiction that gets overlooked and yet surpasses them all in affliction rate is performance addiction. In fact, if I was to take a survey of 100 people and asked them if they have ever struggled with either caring too much about what people think of them or if they have ever feared of failing I would guess the results would be 100 out of 100.

Why is performance addiction a concern?

On the surface performance addiction actually seems like one addiction we could be proud of. After all, if we care so much about how we act in front of others or strive to achieve worthy accomplishments, you would think we would have a lower crime rate and incredibly high performing organizations. However, we know the opposite is true for at least the crime rate in America. And while some organizations are truly high performing, don’t be deceived in thinking there was no cost to many families. Fathers that work 80 hours a week do negatively affect their families.

Performance addiction is detrimental to the person who struggles with it. If not cured, they will struggle with such mind-crippling emotions as guilt, shame, anger, emptiness, and fear for a lifetime.

Secondly, the family surrounding the one who struggles with performance addiction is negatively affected. For example, a mother who feels she never measures up to the standards of others becomes increasingly angry over her perceived rejection and lashes out at her children over the slightest of things. Research shows that 25-30% of chronically mentally ill people would no longer be sick if they could simply eradicate the guilt they feel from being failures (Scalise & Cisney, 2009).

Two origins of performance addicts

Where does performance addiction have its genesis? How does it get started? The two biggest factors that contribute towards performance addiction are:

1) Unrealistic self-imposed standards, and 2) An unhealthy need of approval from others.

When a person believes that they must meet certain standards in order to feel good about themselves they automatically set themselves up for failure. In fact, the fear of failure is constantly riding their backs as they can’t stand the thought of failing. The underlying core problem of a performance addict is that their self-worth is mistakenly derived from how well they do things. This leads to perfectionism, rigidness, control issues, risk avoidance, and debilitating struggles with guilt. In addition, people that struggle with guilt are more prone to struggle with anger and resentment which compounds their problems in life-especially in the area of relationships. A person who hates failure will always struggle because eventually everyone fails.

Imagine that a writer for Associated Content refuses to feel good about themselves unless they write at least four articles a day. If they break a wrist or a family crisis occurs that prevents them from writing for a good while they are going to accumulate quite a bit of bad feelings about themselves over that time frame since their standard of four articles a day will not be reached. A performance addict will literally feel their net worth as a person nose dive with each passing day until, like a bottomed out stock market, they crash. The identity of a performance addict is one in the same.

The need to find approval from others is a second main reason people find themselves trapped in performance addiction. Anytime a person refuses to feel good about themselves unless they know or perceive that someone else approves of them will struggle struggle constantly with the fear of rejection and shame. Someone who struggles to gain the approval of others must always figure out which character they must play around certain people (i.e. “wearing masks”) or avoid people altogether through isolation and withdrawal.


A person that desires to break free from performance addiction must come to realize a basic core value about themselves. That is, each person is valuable because of who and what they are, not because of what they do. A person must realize that just being human has intrinsic and immeasurable worth in and of itself. We are valuable simply because God says so. Repeating the last sentence over and over again about 20 times during an episode of struggle with self-worth will lend itself towards a personal breakthrough.

In addition, some valuable resources in helping a person deal with performance addiction are the following resources:


1) Approval Addiction by Joyce Meyer

2) Search For Significance by Robert McGee


“Addiction & Recovery” (speakers Dr. Eric Scalise & Jennifer Cisney). Adrenaline Addiction. Lesson 306. DVD. http://ift.tt/2cPIjTL, 2009

Tags:#1 Addiction in America: Performance Addiction

5 Best Celebrity Chef Christmas Ham Recipes

Celebrity chefs make even the most elaborate recipes seem easily manageable. Unfortunately, sometimes once the home chef-in-training breaks out the apron, celebrity dishes just aren’t quite as easy and straightforward as they seemed in the television studio. Many seek culinary inspiration from celebrity chefs during the stressful holidays for everything from side dishes to lavish desserts and the all important main dish ham. With so many celebrity chef ham recipe options to choose from–which one should you choose for the holiday meal? There are five great celebrity chef Christmas ham recipes that are both simple and delicious.

Paula Deen’s Old Fashioned Holiday Glazed Ham. Paula Deen has a way of reminding everyone how delicious a simple recipe can be when well prepared. One of the most traditional Christmas ham recipes on this list is Paula Deen’s Old fashioned Holiday Glazed Ham. With a simple, brown sugar and pineapple glaze, and adorned with pineapple rings and maraschino cherries, Deen’s ham looks like ones straight from childhood memories.

Nigella Lawson’s Ginger Glazed Ham. Nigella Lawson spices up a traditional Christmas ham recipe with ginger and hot English mustard in her Ginger Glazed Ham. Cooking in ginger ale adds both flavor and an incredible moistness to the ham. Lawson’s Ginger Glazed Ham recipe is also one of many featured in her new book, “Nigella Christmas”.

Jamie Oliver’s Christmas Jerk Ham. Jamie Oliver breaks completely from tradition with his Christmas Jerk Ham. Oliver’s Christmas ham is seasoned with a flavorful jerk seasoning blend and glazed with an orange rum marmalade. This is a wonderful holiday ham for those seeking to add unique flavors for the festive meal.

Emeril Lagasse’s Sugarcane Baked Ham with Spiced Apples and Pears. Emeril Lagasse spices up a holiday ham for his Sugarcane Baked Ham with Spiced Apples and Pears. An aromatic molasses, cane and corn syrup glaze is a simply prepared addition to a hickory smoked ham-and apples and pears are nice change from the usual pineapple rings and cherries often accompanying a holiday ham.

Ina Garten’s Orange Baked Ham. One of the easiest Christmas ham recipes on this list is one created by Ina Garten. Garten’s Orange Baked Ham uses only six simple ingredients in an incredible orange sugar glaze. The Orange Baked Ham takes traditional ham to a new holiday level with its tangy flavors-but, is so easy that it doesn’t stress the preparing host.

Tags:5 Best Celebrity Chef Christmas Ham Recipes

01/12/11 Daily Dose of Nonsense

Scope it, as in Horoscope: You will be told to change the tone. However, it means the tone must changed by those who are telling us, right? Or are they exempt?

Bonehead Tip of the Day: “Didn’t see it coming” doesn’t wash with those tragic events in Arizona. There were plenty of red flags on that one.

The List: Words or phrases that make me turn into “a deer in headlights” because of overuse, hypocritical or just reject the premise.
1. Awareness
2. Budget
3. Meeting
4. Something for everyone
5. Family fun
6. Early detection
7. Benefit
8. Having a band for a benefit
9. Tax cuts for the rich
10. Change
11. A new study
12. How can we prevent it from happening again?
13. Gun control
14. Take time off to be with family.
15. People who suggest they “speak for the American people”
Notes: Feel free to add on to this as it evolves.

Trivia: When soldiers heard the term “ware before” they knew they must kneel down. They were in line in front of other soldiers who were about to shoot. Somehow, “fore” in our golf game came from that idea.

Closer: The more we pay attention the more they want to take our freedoms away. All in the name of security and safety.

Tags:01/12/11 Daily Dose of Nonsense

08.06.2009 Maddaloni Jewelers Host Nick Stellino's Grilling Event:... Update...Recipe Countdown

The countdown has begun for the big event. 38 Days until September 13th,…Nick Stellino, Maurice Lacroix and Macari Wines all together at Maddaloni Jewelers. Join the fun, Here is Nick’s latest recipe, Happy Grilling.JASPER’S TOMATO, GRILLED ASPARAGUS AND BLUE CHEESE SALAD WITH GRILLED CHICKEN

Chef Kent Rathbun – Abacus, Dallas; Jasper’s Restaurants, TexasSERVES 4

Coat the chicken breasts with the extra light olive oil and season with cracked black pepper and kosher salt. Grill on a charcoal grill or in a grill pan until the chicken is cooked through, approximately 5 to 7 minutes per side, depending on thickness. Remove the chicken breasts from the heat and slice each into 6 to 8 pieces.

To prepare the grilled asparagus:
Marinate the asparagus in the extra virgin olive oil and season with cracked black pepper and kosher salt. Grill over an open flame for 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and serve warm.

To prepare the roast shallot-black pepper vinaigrette:
Cut off the top of the head of garlic and peel the shallots. To roast the garlic and shallots, brush with extra virgin olive oil and place in a baking dish in an oven preheated to 375 degrees. Roast until soft, approximately 35 to 40 minutes

In a medium bowl, mix ½ cup extra virgin olive oil and both vinegars. After the garlic and shallots cool, squeeze the garlic cloves out of their skins, and chop and mash them into a paste together with the shallots. Add the garlic-and-shallots paste to the rest of the ingredients, mix, and season with kosher salt.

To serve:
On each plate lay out the tomato slices with the grilled asparagus in a nice arrangement. Arrange the slices of chicken breast on the plate next to the tomatoes. Sprinkle the Maytag blue cheese over the top of the salad, and garnish with the red-onion rings and basil. Drizzle 2 ounces of the vinaigrette over each salad.

Tags:08.06.2009 Maddaloni Jewelers Host Nick Stellino’s Grilling Event:… Update…Recipe Countdown

#1 Book Series for This Easter Season

Nope, I’m not talking about the 153rd episode of Seinfeld, rather a Christian book series that has hit the bookshelves. The official book series written by the famous Christian author Neta Jackson is called Yada Yada Prayer Group. It is a series of seven books that follow a group of unforeseen women through an intoxicating adventure of the various levels of being a believer of God.

Unlike other Christian books on the market, Yada Yada Prayer Group is about finding God in unconventional times and locations. The series is placed in Chicago, Illinois, on the poorer streets of the city which tend to lack a religious background at times. It is written in a setting that everyone can understand – it is not just another Christian book series with the usual script of an unbeliever turned believer in the end.

No, this series starts out with a younger family of four that has moved from the posh suburbs into the city to assist a Christian voyage to help an inner city church. One of the main characters, Jodi Baxter, finds her cradle-Christianity to be challenged and strengthened through the daily support and challenges that are endured through an assigned prayer group at a women’s conference. The group grows into a supportive group of twelve women with different backgrounds. Some of these backgrounds are: an ex-convict turned right, an overworked African-American woman whose mother was brought up in slavery, Jodi known as the Caucasian “super-Christian”, a widowed African-American principal, a Jewish wife, a well-off African wife working as a professor at Northwestern University and so much more.

With the multitudes of differences between all the characters, it is hard for anyone reading the series to not find a place for themselves in this book. While reading each one, I was immediately drawn into the characters and could see myself living life within this group of women even though I come from a completely different background. It is one of those books that not only takes a person out of his/her comfort zone but also encourages his/her prayer “to get on”. It is a must read for all ages! It is perfect for adding to an Easter Basket this season!

Tags:#1 Book Series for This Easter Season

10 Activities for Christmas Weekend with Your Family

Make quality family time the highlight of this holiday season by participating in these fun activities for Christmas weekend.

1) Christmas Light Tour
Bundle up and squeeze into the family car to tour your area for Christmas light displays. See who can spot the most inflatable Santas and light up reindeer, and then vote on which house has the gaudiest display or the most beautiful.

2) Exercise
Avoid holiday weight gain, or at least holiday eating guilt, by participating in a 5K with your family. Many communities have running events Christmas weekend, and most are open to walkers. This year, you can catch up with Aunt Marge on a brisk walk instead of on the couch.

3) Host a Party
Try a fun spin on a traditional holiday party by hosting an ugly sweater party or having a white elephant gift exchange.

4) Bake
Baking is a wonderful way to spend quality time as a family, and the delicious goodies make it that much more enjoyable. You can bake and decorate sugar cookies, prepare a pan of cinnamon rolls for Christmas morning breakfast, or try your hand at candies like caramels or divinity. If you don’t have a traditional Christmas treat in your family, start one!

5) Craft Ornaments
Spend some time as a family crafting ornaments for your Christmas tree. You can pick up paintable wooden or ceramic ornaments for under a $1 a piece at your local craft store. Make reindeer ornaments with candy canes or clothes pins by adding pipe cleaner antlers and gluing on plastic eyes. Smaller children can twist white and red pipe cleaners together and then bend them into a candy cane shape to hang on the tree.

6) Start a Game Tradition
Listen to some holiday music, turn on the Christmas tree lights, and show your kids just how good you are at Monopoly.

7) Take Family Pictures
If your family is all gathered together for the Christmas holiday weekend, use it as an opportunity to snap some family photos.

8) Show Thanks to Santa and the Reindeer
Let your kids write a quick thank you note to Santa for his thoughtfulness and hard work every year. Prepare some cookies and milk for the big man, and don’t forget carrots for the reindeer.

9) Movie Night
Slip into your pajamas, pop some popcorn, and cuddle up with the ones you love for a Christmas themed movie night. Enjoy traditional favorites such as “National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation,” “A Christmas Story,” or “A Charlie Brown Christmas.” Newer Christmas classics worth watching include “The Santa Clause” and “The Polar Express.”

10) Track Santa’s Progress
NORAD is a military organization with a Christmas Eve tradition of tracking Santa’s progress as he travels the globe delivering gifts. On their website, using Google Earth, you can see which communities Santa has visited and watch as he gets closer and closer to your area.

Tags:10 Activities for Christmas Weekend with Your Family

One Down, Two More to Go for Ravens

With much adversity this year regarding the Baltimore Ravens, the team is still on path to achieving their goal. First goal, win the division-DONE. Second goal, beat the Indianapolis Colts-DONE. As the Ravens focus their attention on the top seed in the AFC, the Denver Broncos, the team yet again face criticism, doubt by pundits, and critics abroad. The lack of respect is thick in the air, and odds makers have deemed the Ravens, double digit underdogs vs the Broncos. Last season, Denver was a playoff team, but was considered a joke amongst pundits. Notably, because the previous quarterback, Tim Tebow was known as a runner instead of a quarterback whom could accurately throw from the pocket. This season, future Hall of Fame quarterback, Peyton Manning is at the helm. Manning, who has enjoyed much success against the Ravens has been touted as MVP front-runner for this 2012 season.

The divisional round match up will be the second meeting between the two teams. The Broncos traveled to Baltimore week 15 to take on the Ravens on December 12, 2012. The Ravens were missing seven key starters during the match up, with five on the defense, and two on offense. Denver, who was much healthier, had it pretty easy against second and third string linebackers for much of the day. The first half of the game, the Ravens stood their ground, and they held Peyton Manning to several 3-and-outs, forcing him off the field. However, the game quickly got out of hand as quarterback Joe Flacco committed two costly turn overs. The first turnover was a fumbled quarterback sneak, and an interception in the red zone which was taken back to the house for 98 yards by CB Chris Harris. By half time, the score was 17-0 with Denver on top.

This second match up is a totally different story. The Ravens are much healthier, and most of the players are back in the starting lineup. With the CB Lardarius Webb on injured reserve, along with linebacker, Jameel McClain the Ravens are back. The divisional match up; whom many have titled a mismatch for the Ravens will be 60 minutes of football. I promise you the Broncos are in for a real surprise, as they face a Ravens teams who have made a commitment to providing legendary linebacker, Ray Lewis a legendary finish. Lewis, who announced his retirement on January 2, 2013 will face Peyton Manning for his “Last Ride”. Only this time, the sports world will be shocked with the results of the outcome. Ladies and Gentlemen, the 2012 Ravens are the version of the 2011 Giants. The Ravens have one down, and two left before that final game in the Big Easy.

Tags:One Down, Two More to Go for Ravens

1 Million Birth Control Pills Recalled: How Safe is Your Plan?

COMMENTARY | Recently, Pfizer announced it accidentally released several lots of incorrectly dosed birth control pills as a result of an equipment failure. This mistake means about one million faulty pill packs have been distributed. The affected pill packs were of the generic Norgestrel and Ethinyl Estradiol tablet type and had expiration dates ranging between July 31, 2013 and March 31, 2014, reported the Associated Press. The packs contain inaccurate numbers of active and inactive pills which will result in ineffective birth control.

This isn’t the first birth control pill slip-up in the last year even either, in September of 2011, Qualitest Pharmaceuticals, had a similar slip-up with packaging where they disordered the pills in the pack which could cause women to take the pills in the wrong order making them far less effective, reported CNN news. That recall was for 1.4 million packs. Between the two incidents, that means in the last year alone 2.4 million pill packs have been defective and on the market — that we know about.

While both these incidents are a seriously epic fail for the quality control checkers over at Pfizer and Qualitest, this is a great time for women worldwide to review their birth control plan and recognize that even the birth control pill can fail, accurately dosed or not. If your aim is to guarantee you won’t become pregnant, abstinence really is the only safe birth control. Realistically, however, it’s wise to use multiple birth control methods. For example, using condoms which also prevent disease, birth control, tracking your own fertility and keeping Plan-B emergency contraceptive pills on hand for broken condom situations, missed pills, or well, one million faulty pill packs is fairly safe plan for not becoming pregnant.

While as a woman I feel for those that thought they were playing it safe, and may now be faced with an unexpected surprise, this event really shines light on the importance of knowing your body, paying attention to it, your pills, and sexual and reproductive education for not only teens, but adults. How much do your kids know?

Tags:1 Million Birth Control Pills Recalled: How Safe is Your Plan?

$1 Macaron Happy Hour at Miette in Hayes Valley

Are you bored with $1 drafts and well drinks at typical happy hours across San Francisco? Then head over to Miette for happy hour! From 5pm to 7pm, their happy hour features French macarons (American coconut macaroons are spelled with two o’s and are significantly different) that are only $1! That’s 75 cents off their usual price.

Try the rose geranium macaron, the chocolate lavender, the hazelnut or one the many varying flavors. Or, if you’re not into macarons, try one of their fleur de sel caramels, sweet little cupcakes or a slice of their 6-inch tall, double layered Chocolate Tomboy Cake. You won’t be disappointed!

Miette’s is at 449 Octavia. They’re open from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday through Saturday and on Sundays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.

$1 Macarons at Miette

Tags:$1 Macaron Happy Hour at Miette in Hayes Valley

1 Wall Street: The Center of the Financial World

With some of the most magnificent skyscrapers in the world, New York City stands head and shoulders above every other city in the world in this regard. There are many fine buildings which the visitor and the resident of the Big Apple should pay deference to while they are exploring the lay of the land. One of these fine buildings is located at the address that’s at the center of the financial world; 1 Wall Street.

In terms of architecture, the building at 1 Wall Street is definitely worth the trip downtown. The current primary tenant is The Bank of New York and they proudly display their regal and majestic lobby for anyone to see. An Art Deco skyscraper with beautiful red and gold mosaics on the lobby wall, for people interested in more than just the skyline, the building at 1 Wall Street should be a part of your visit to the downtown area. 1 Wall Street, New York, NY, 10005.

Many cynics, those not keyed into history, and those less inclined to dip their toes into “the markets”‘ for having been burned by horrible timing into their 401K do not recognize is that “Wall Street” has much deeper roots into the history of this nation; a history which should be acknowledged when visiting.

In fact, while taking a tour and visiting New York City one of the most important places for you to visit is the Wall Street area. Wall Street is where the United States of America was founded; George Washington ran the country from lower Manhattan and he actually ceded the rule of the nation after his second term from the Wall Street area.

Despite all been negative connotations to Wall Street has had in recent months; the fact is that Wall Street is still the center of the financial universe. Wall Street also has a whole bunch of very interesting looking buildings and architecture; one of these buildings is the building at one number 1 Wall St. .

The building at 1 Wall St is built in the art-deco fashion and is an amazing skyscraper. Inside of the main lobby at Wall Street are these spectacular gold and red mosaics which you have probably seen before. Originally the building at 1 Wall St was known as the Irving trust Co. building; it later became the Bank of New York building. The Bank of New York maintains its position as the primary tenant of 1 Wall St today.

Tags:1 Wall Street: The Center of the Financial World

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