26 November, 2008

Gobble, Gobble!!

Happy Thanksgiving!! Yes, it’s the time of the year when most American families look forward to the turkey and dressing, cranberry sauce, greens and sweet potato pie. It’s up early to get everything on the stove for the big family dinner. While the food is cooking, there’s time to turn on the world famous Macy’s Parade and watch all of the giant balloon characters bounce down the streets of New York. After the parade, it’s time to set the table (or tables, depending on your gathering) and start putting the food out. Most families bless the food and go around the table so that everyone can say what they are thankful for. Several forkfuls later, tummies are poufed out, belts are loosened and everyone sits back to relax and revel in the feeling of being full.

As for me, I plan to make a few phone calls to out of town friends, watch a few movies, and chow down on my favorite…Gino’s East pizza! For me this year, it’s the simple pleasures.

Speaking of simple pleasures…I found something so cute that I just had to share.


Turkey Cupcakes (from Betty Crocker)

1 box Betty Crocker SuperMoist devil’s food cake mix
Water, vegetable oil and eggs per the cake mix box
2 – 1lb containers Better Crocker Rich & Creamy milk chocolate frosting
1 – 4.25oz tube Betty Crocker white decorating icing
1 – 0.68oz tube Betty Crocker brown decorating gel
Candy corn
Chocolate candy sprinkles

Heat oven to 350°F. Make and cool 24 cupcakes as directed on box. Frost. Place remaining frosting in a zip seal freezer plastic bag. Snip off small corner of bag. To decorate each cupcake, pipe 1-inch mound of frosting on one side of cupcake to look like the head of a turkey. Make eyes with white icing and brown gel. Add candy corn for beak. To make feathers, pipe frosting on opposite side to hold candy corn. Place candy corn to look like feathers. Sprinkle chocolate candy sprinkles near head and at base of feathers. Add candy corn for feet. Smile at how cute they are and eat!!

Tomorrow is the day now commonly referred to as Black Friday! The name of the game is sales, sales, sales for the start of the Christmas Season. Stores are opening early and offering great discounts to those who are brave enough to face the time, temperatures and the crowds. If you are one of the ones who will be out in the fun, I wish you much luck in finding everything you are searching for and more!! I would love to be out in the fun, but unfortunately my economy won't allow it.

There are so many things to be thankful for that most of us rarely even scratch the surface. So many things that we take for granted. There are so many things that I am grateful for…and so many things that I need to be more grateful for. But right now I am thankful that you have taken this time with me reading and supporting my blog! Thank you!! I really am grateful for you!!

No matter how you celebrate Thanksgiving, I hope that you find a few moments to really think of all of the things you have been blessed with and express your gratitude. And it's also a GREAT time to tell those that you love that you do love them!!

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Luv,
Pixxa

20 November, 2008

HELLO!!

Friday, November 21st is World Hello Day. What a fun day---to participate you simply say "hello!" to 10 people. How easy is that? Well, now that I think about it, maybe it's not as easy as I think. I am a city girl, but I do remember the "good 'ole days" when people would greet each other on the street. I try to do this now in my neighborhood...when I walk past people I smile and will say "good morning" (obviously if it's morning). Most people will reciprocate with a smile and a quick “morning”, but sometimes the responses that I get are laughable. My favorite is one man who thought I was flirting and he ended up following me for half a block and asking for my phone number. Too bad he wasn’t my type!!

The origin of this “holiday” started as a result of the conflict between Egypt and Israel in the Fall of 1973. Since then, it has grown and is celebrated annually in more than 180 countries. The main purpose of this celebration is to show how important communication is especially for preserving peace. And how simple is speaking to 10 people and becoming a contributor to making world peace happen!!

And how can we talk about hello without mentioning "Hello Kitty"? You can check out all things Hello Kitty at their website: http://www.sanrio.com/

So tomorrow, Friday, November 21st, make sure you say “Hello!” to 10 people and help to make world peace a reality. For more information on World Hello Day, please visit their website. And if you'd like to spice it up, here's a site where you can learn to say hello in many languages.

Say HELLO and celebrate!!

Luv Ya!!

Pixxa

10 November, 2008

Let's celebrate...HAMBURGERS!!

Even though May is National Hamburger Month, I thought today would be a great day to celebrate hamburgers! This is probably because I've been craving a really good hamburger lately. And can you believe that I haven't been able to find it? You'd think that would be an easy feat in Chicago, but I am still in search of that wonderful burger.

originally posted to Flickr by hellochris at http://flickr.com/photos/65459962@N00/202508906

According to Wikipedia "A hamburger (or burger) is a sandwich consisting of a cooked ground meat patty, usually beef, placed in a sliced bun or between pieces of bread or toast. Hamburgers are often served with various condiments, such as ketchup, mustard, mayonnaise, relish etc. as well as lettuce, tomato, onion, pickles, and cheese."

My perfect burger is a nice fresh beef patty between a toasted bun, dripping with cheese, ketchup and mustard. If there's a pickle on board, I'll pluck it off and eat that first. Sometimes grilled onions are okay (never raw) and hardly ever will I eat lettuce, tomatoes or mayonnaise. I prefer good old fashioned, greasy ground beef as opposed to chuck or round. It's gotta be juicy!!

While history can't say with certainty when the first hamburger was created, we do know it was long ago. This site will give you an interesting history of ground meat and burgers. And if you'd like to make your own special hamburger this site claims to be THE place for hamburger recipes. The one I found most interesting is the bacon and banana burger. I don't think so! But as of late, and without a doubt, the most expensive burger sells for $5,000 in Las Vegas' Fleur de Lys at Mandalay Bay. The burger, (a kobe burger stuffed with foie gras and black truffle, served on a brioche truffle bun and garnished with Chef Keller's special sauce) is so good that it comes with a free bottle of 13 year old wine (Chateau Petrus 1995...the real reason for the price tag).

Back down here on earth, I recently visited Red Robin (touted as America's Gourmet Burgers and Spirits). I had the 5-alarm burger. It was good (I like spicy), but it just didn't hit the spot. I regret that I didn't try something super cheesy.
So I will keep looking for that perfect burger...but until I find it, I will celebrate the journey!! (It's definitely yummy!!)
And who could celebrate the hamburger without a tribute to the Top 11 Weirdest Burgers!! My favorites are the Sneaker burger, the Hamburger dress and best of all the Beef Font. Check them out.

I couldn't close out this celebration of the hamburger without the most famous hamburger line of all...





Until next time...CELEBRATE!!

Luv,

Pixxa

05 November, 2008

YES WE CAN!!!


Congratulations to President-Elect Barack Obama!!!
YES WE CAN!!!

03 November, 2008

Happy November!!

Where has the year gone? Only 2 more months before 2008 is gone. Time to start thinking about your plans for New Year’s Eve. I have always wanted to go to Times Square in New York City but have never gotten around to it. Most people think that’s a crazy notion, but I think it would be a blast!! Never too early to start planning a celebration…and New Year’s Eve is one of the most celebrated occasions.

November is I am so Thankful Month. The creators want November to be dedicated to giving thanks and counting your blessings daily. And by all means don’t keep it to yourself. Share with others the things that you are thankful for.

I googled this topic and found a blog entry on Beautiful Mind from last year (I think) that has some really great advice. They list 6 points and I think #1, 2, 4 & 6 are bits of advice that we can all adapt.

I also found an entry on writing.com of a person’s thankfulness. It’s a great read that makes you think about things. The author started this in 2001 and to date (last updated in 2004) lists 77 things they are thankful for.

Yesterday (11/2) was Plan Your Epitaph Day. Although it sounds rather morbid and like nothing to celebrate, PYED is dedicated to the proposition that a forgettable gravestone is a fate worse than death. So while this doesn’t quite seem like something to celebrate, it would have been fun to have a small dinner party celebration with a contest to write the best epitaph. Hey…we’ve all gotta go sometime, so you may as well enjoy the ride!

Tomorrow (11/4) is Use Your Common Sense Day. Now that’s a day that A LOT of people need to celebrate. Yes, sometimes I question whether or not some people actually use their common sense. You’ve seen the shows that prove this…police chases, funny videos, crazy theft attempts… Let’s celebrate those of us who use our common sense!!!

One of the things that I will soon be celebrating is the end of the Presidental election season. I hate the crazy commercials putting down opponents and the lack of conversation on the real issues. Lots of put downs and media buzz, but nothing of sunstance to help make one of the most crucial decisions of our time. But tomorrow is Election Day!! The end to the stupid commercials and commentary. Hopefully you will do your civic duty and get out and vote (especially if you’re voting for Obama)!!

We’ve touched on yesterday and tomorrow, but what about today? Today is Sandwich Day. You guessed it, today is the day to recognize the inventor of the sandwich, John Montague. Montague is said to have invented the sandwich as a time-saving nourishment while engaging in a 24-hour long gambling session in 1762. Now that’s a true gambler!!

I have 2 favorites. My favorite sandwich is a grilled ham and cheese sandwich. Bread, butter, ham and cheese and nothing more. Coming in second is a spaghetti sandwich. Two slices of bread, left over spaghetti and a slice of American cheese…warmed in the microwave until the cheese is melted. YUM!! What’s your favorite? In case you don’t have one, here’s a few “unique” ones to try.

Breakfast Sandwich
Tex-Mex Club Sandwich
Ruben Sandwich
Muffuletta Sandwich
Crunchy Sandwich
Grilled Vegetable Sandwich

So in honor of Sandwich Day…guess what’s for dinner? (smile)

Find something to celebrate!! And don’t forget to VOTE tomorrow!!!

Love,
Pixxa