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memorial day

Memorial Day: Thank You To Those Who Gave the Ultimate Sacrifice

memorial day son

Memorial Day is today.  The holiday was borne out of the Civil War and a desire to honor our dead.

Today, let’s think of the thousands and millions, maybe, of children who have grown up without a parent because she or he gave the ultimate sacrifice fighting for their country.

Children like Wyatt McCain, who was 8 in 2012 when this photo of the North Pole, Alaska boy went viral as he looked upon his father’s grave at the National Cemetery on Memorial Day in Arlington, Va.

His dad, Army SFC Johnathan McCain, was killed by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan in November 2011. Thank you Wyatt and family for bearing the pain of loss so we can feel free.

 

Memorial Day Grilling Alternative: Bison is Healthier and Lower in Fat

bratwurst

The President of the United States might have just given the bison the designation as the first ever National mammal, but that isn’t stopping people from consuming them as a healthier alternative to chicken and beef. I didn’t even realize that bison was eaten until I saw them on the menu at a restaurant a few years back.

The Honest Bison  company sells “100% grassfed and humanely raised” Bison for retail at supermarket. Interesting. I’m a vegetarian who wouldn’t eat a national mammal, or any mammal, but I realize others do, so I’m sharing a bison bratwurst recipe to consider if you want to mix up your grilling this Memorial Day weekend or any outdoor (or indoor) eating day this summer.

                             Bison Bratwurst Recipe

bison bratwurst

Ingredients:

1 lb. (4 brats) Bison Bratwurst

1 onion, sliced

1 bottle of bock-style beer*

2 cups beef broth (or bison broth made with The Honest Bison’s soup bones!)

2 tbsp. grassfed butter

3 cups sauerkraut, drained on paper towels

1 cup halved Brussels sprouts (sautéed in advance with coconut oil)

Sea salt and pepper to taste

Preparation:

Heat a tall-sided skillet or wide, shallow pot over medium-high heat.

Add onion, beer, and bison bratwurst. Simmer, turning brats occasionally, until beer is reduced to a syrupy consistency and onions are caramelized, about 10 minutes.

Remove brats and add beef/bison broth to the pan, scraping the bottom until mixture is fully incorporated.

Add the brats back into the pan and simmer until fully cooked, about 10 minutes more.

Remove brats and bring broth to a full boil until reduced to syrupy consistency. Be careful that it doesn’t burn off.

Reduce heat to medium-low and melt the grassfed butter, scraping up the caramelized bits in the pan.

Add brats back into the pan. Place sauerkraut around brats and cook until somewhat crisp. Turn brats over and stir often.

Add the sautéed Brussels sprouts and stir them into the sauerkraut until heated.

Season with salt and pepper to taste if needed.

Let The Honest Bison know how your dish came out, tag @thehonestbison on Instagram! Happy eating and Happy Memorial Day! Recipe modified from Chaos in the Kitchen.

Eco-Friday: 20 Memorial Day Eco-Friendly Grilling Tips

grilling
It’s Memorial Day weekend and many families around the US may be hosting barbecues and cook-outs in celebration of the holiday remembering fallen soldiers of war or military servicemen who have passed away. As you prepare to host an event in your home, consider implementing some of these simple suggestions for having a Green, Eco-Friendly and Environmentally-friendly event.
  1. Plan ahead so you don’t have too much food.
  2. Use natural charcoal or better yet natural gas or propane grill which are more environmentally friendly.
  3. Buy local produce from local farmer’s markets
  4. Buy organic foods
  5. Consider vegan or vegatarian options which are better for the digestive system
  6. Use all natural insect repellant and bug sprays which are better on the skin, especially for small children
  7. Bring home the goods in a recyclable or paper not plastic bags
  8. Serve food on reusable plates and utensils or biodegradable or recyclable flat and tableware
  9. Start your fire with a chimney starter instead of lighter fluid
  10. Cook with pans and items made of recyclable materials
  11. Spread the energy consumed cooking around by having guests bring a dish
  12. Grill as much as you can, and even cook the foods in the burners on the grill because it saves energy
  13. Cover pans while cooking to reduce cooking time or energy bill if you are cooking on the stove in the kitchen
  14. Cut up the food into smaller pieces to let them cook faster and save energy
  15. Consider using a water-filter pitcher or a faucet mounted filter for water instead of bottle water
  16. Mix up a batch of lemonade or iced tea and serve in a large pitcher or punch bowl to cut down on cans and plastic bottles
  17. Figure out creative ways to “remix” the leftovers rather than dump them out.
  18. Compost the veggies or grill scraps.
  19. Clean up using non-toxic cleansers and Green cleaning products
  20. Recycle when you’re done!

 

Even if you can institute a few of these suggestions, you would have done at least something to reduce your carbon footprint, and give back to Mother Earth. Happy Grilling!

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Fashion Secrets to Wearing White While Preggers

white memorial day

Memorial Day is traditionally the trigger day that you can wear white again.

That is the case if you pay attention to conventional fashion rules. I don’t, but it’s totally okay if you do. Moms-to-be may be hesitant wearing white while pregnant. Typically, as women gain weight as they advance in their pregnancy, they stick to basic black and all black palette because that color is slimming. Actually, monochromatic in any color has a slimming effect because it eliminates curves and creates one line. It also makes you look taller.

Nowadays, slim jeans made with stretchy elastic are available in maternity styles as well. These types of jeans will cinch you in and the compression effect is actually comforting to achy pregnancy legs, believe it or not. A peasant top with some embroidered trim at the neckline or cuff would pair perfectly.

And these days I am obsessing over Converse and other hi top sneakers. Carry a White tote and you’ve got your complete Memorial Day cook out look!

A Pea In The Pod Maternity Off-The-Shoulder Crochet Top • A Pea in the Pod • $88

Prada Saffiano Cuir Double Mini Tote Bag, White/Red (Bianco/Rosso) • Prada • $2,600

Paige Denim Skyline Ankle Peg Maternity Jeans • Paige Denim • $189

Converse Limited Edition All Star Mid Lux White Crochet Canvas Wedge Sneaker • $175

Memorial Day: Pool Opening Safety Tips for Kids

safety tips

Memorial Day weekend marks the beginning of pool season again because most public and private pools open for the first time in the year. It’s a good time for parents to review their water and pool safety rules.

Here is a snippet of some tips we’ve shared from the now-defunct “Parenting the First Time Through” blog:

Never leave a child unsupervised Children should never be left unsupervised in the water, especially very young children. It only takes a few inches of water to drown, so don’t think that your toddler will be fine alone in the baby pool. Accidents happen, children can fall and hit their head, infants can lose their balance and go under, or even crawl into a slightly deeper section of a sloped wading pool while chasing a toy. ‘

In its Drowning Prevention Fact Sheet, Safekids.org states that since 1999, an average of 745 children under the age of 14 drown every year, with children under the age of 5 representing 76% of all deaths. Further, in 2009 more than 5000 children under the age of 14 suffered non-fatal near-drowning injuries. Children under 5 made up 80% of this number.

These numbers are startling and should be a call to vigilance for parents, especially those who own pools at home. Safekids.org goes on to say 72% of deaths and 55% of injuries occur at home pools under the age of 5, while 45% of fatalities in the older age bracket (5 to 14) occur at public facilites. Even inflatable pools are not exempt. In just those few inches of water there were 244 reported submersion cases between 2001 and 2009 in children under age 11.

Don’t count on the lifeguards to babysit – While public pools and beaches may employ lifeguards, don’t count on them as the sole supervisor of your children. They are there to help make the swimming area as safe an environment as possible for everyone. That means they are watching not just your children, but you, your friends, your friends’ children, and every other swimmer. That’s a lot of people.

Celebrity Moms Memorial Day Salutes

collage: Hollywood Life
This Memorial Day, several of the celebrity moms we’ve covered in recent years sent out salutes and recognition of those who lost their lives in war. Here are a select few: 

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Happy Memorial Day from Bellyitch

Because life is more than a Barbecue or an Internet Meme, today we salute those who gave the ultimate sacrifice defending freedom and the flag for their country. 
And to those who lost their lives before getting a chance to meet their child, like:
Lt. James J. Cathey whose pregnant wife, Katherine Cathey, is depicted in a photo taken by Pultitzer Prize Winning photojournalist Todd Heisler.  Her baby was due Jan 1, 2006 but her husband died in an explosion in Iraq on August 21, 2005.–Todd Heisler/Rocky Mountain News
In Memory and In Memoriam today, and always.
-From Bellyitch Blog

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Memorial Day: 20 Green Grilling Tips

It’s Memorial Day weekend and many families around the US may be hosting barbecues and cook-outs in celebration of the holiday remembering fallen soldiers of war or military servicemen who have passed away. As you prepare to host an event in your home, consider implementing some of these simple suggestions for having a Green, Eco-Friendly and Environmentally-friendly event.

  1. Plan ahead so you don’t have too much food.
  2. Use natural charcoal or better yet natural gas or propane grill which are more environmentally friendly. 
  3. Buy local produce from local farmer’s markets
  4. Buy organic foods
  5. Consider vegan or vegetarian options which are better for the digestive system
  6. Use all natural insect repellent and bug sprays which are better on the skin, especially for small children
  7. Bring home the goods in a recyclable or paper not plastic bags
  8. Serve food on reusable plates and utensils or biodegradable or recyclable flat and tableware
  9. Start your fire with a chimney starter instead of lighter fluid
  10. Cook with pans and items made of recyclable materials
  11. Spread the energy consumed cooking around by having guests bring a dish
  12. Grill as much as you can, and even cook the foods in the burners on the grill because it saves energy
  13. Cover pans while cooking to reduce cooking time or energy bill if you are cooking on the stove in the kitchen
  14. Cut up the food into smaller pieces to let them cook faster and save energy
  15. Consider using a water-filter pitcher or a faucet mounted filter for water instead of bottle water
  16. Mix up a batch of lemonade or iced tea and serve in a large pitcher or punch bowl to cut down on cans and plastic bottles
  17. Figure out creative ways to “remix” the leftovers rather than dump them out. 
  18. Compost the veggies or grill scraps. 
  19. Clean up using non-toxic cleansers and Green cleaning products
  20. Recycle when you’re done!

Even if you can institute a few of these suggestions, you would have done at least something to reduce your carbon footprint, and give back to Mother Earth. Happy Grilling!

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5 Last Minute Memorial Day Cook out Salad Recipes

If you’re heading out to a cook out for Memorial Day and still scratching your head on what to take over to the host’s home or what salad to make if you are hosing a barbecue or cookout, here are 5 easy and simple salad recipes from the FoodNetwork to consider. Above is the Roman Salad



Ingredients

1 cup balsamic vinegar

1 cup pitted green and black olives, halved
1/4 cup chopped fresh parsley leaves
3 anchovy fillets, drained and chopped
2 tablespoons capers, rinsed and drained
1 garlic clove, thinly sliced
8 fresh basil leaves, shredded
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound vine-ripened tomatoes (about 3 tomatoes)
Directions
Cook the balsamic vinegar in a small saucepan over low heat until thick, syrupy, and measuring 1/4 cup, about 20 minutes. Set aside to cool.
Combine the olives, parsley, anchovies, capers, garlic, basil, pepper, and olive oil in a small bowl and toss to combine.
To serve, slice the tomatoes into 1/4-inch thick rounds and place, slightly overlapping, on a serving plate. Spoon the olive and parsley mixture over the tomatoes. Drizzle the reduced balsamic over the salad and serve.
Read more at: http://www.foodnetwork.com/food/cda/recipe_print/0,1946,FOOD_9936_36960_RECIPE-PRINT-FULL-PAGE-FORMATTER,00.html?oc=linkback

BLT Pasta Salad

Ingredients

12 ounces corkscrew-shaped pasta

1/2 cup milk
12 ounces lean bacon
3 medium ripe tomatoes, cut into chunks
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1 clove garlic, minced
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1/4 cup sour cream
4 tablespoons chopped chives or scallion greens
5 heads Bibb lettuce, quartered, or 5 cups chopped romaine hearts
Directions
Cook the pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water as the label directs. Drain and toss with the milk in a large bowl; set aside.
Meanwhile, cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat until crisp. Drain on paper towels. Discard all but 3 tablespoons drippings from the pan. Add the tomatoes, thyme and garlic to the pan and toss until warmed through; season with salt and pepper. Crumble the bacon into bite-size pieces; set aside 1/4 cup for garnish. Toss the remaining bacon and the tomato mixture with the pasta.
Mix the mayonnaise, sour cream and 3 tablespoons chives with the pasta until evenly combined. Season with salt and pepper. Add the lettuce; toss again to coat. Garnish with the reserved bacon and the remaining 1 tablespoon chives. Serve at room temperature.
Per serving: Calories 960; Fat 56 g (Sat. 20 g; Mono. 30 g; Poly. 18 g); Cholesterol 125 mg; Sodium 2,114 mg; Carbohydrate 73 g; Fiber 5 g; Protein 44 g

Black Bean and Corn Salad

4 ears corn, husks removed

2 tablespoons olive oil

1 cup diced red bell pepper
3/4 cup diced red onion
1/4 cup cider vinegar
1 (15-ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/2 cup snow peas, julienned
1 teaspoon sea salt
1 teaspoon freshly cracked black pepper
Directions
Preheat the grill to medium.
Grill the corn until lightly charred, about 2 minutes, turning frequently. Transfer the corn to a cutting board and using a serrated knife remove the kernels. Set aside.
In a medium saute pan over medium-high heat, add the olive oil, then the red bell pepper and the red onion. Saute for 3 minutes, then add the vinegar, beans and corn and saute for 2 minutes. Stir in the garlic and the snow peas and saute for 1 minute more. Remove from the heat to a serving bowl and season with salt and pepper. Serve warm or cold.



Quinoa Salad with Asparagus, Goat Cheese and Black Olives

Ingredients

Vinaigrette:

1/4 cup red wine vinegar
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon mustard
1/2 cup olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
Quinoa Salad:
4 cups salted water or vegetable stock
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
2 cups quinoa
16 spears asparagus, trimmed
Olive oil, for brushing
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 cup pitted nicoise olives
4 ounces aged goat cheese, shaved
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil
1/4 cup fresh parsley leaves
Directions
For the vinaigrette: Combine the vinegar, honey and mustard in a blender and blend until smooth. With the motor running, slowly add the olive oil and blend until emulsified. Add salt and pepper to taste and pulse a few times to incorporate.
For the quinoa salad: Bring the salted water or vegetable stock to a boil and add the thyme. Stir in the quinoa, bring to a boil, reduce the heat to low, cover and simmer until cooked through, about 30 minutes. Remove from the heat and let sit 5 minutes. Fluff with a fork.
Preheat the grill. Brush the asparagus with olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Grill on all sides until just cooked through, about 5 minutes. Remove from the grill and cut into 1/2-inch pieces.
Transfer the quinoa to a large bowl, fold in the asparagus, olives, goat cheese, basil and parsley. Add just enough vinaigrette to moisten the salad; don’t make it too wet. Transfer to a platter and drizzle with more of the vinaigrette.
Serves: 6; Calories: 477; Total Fat: 29 grams; Saturated Fat: 6 grams; Protein: 13 grams; Total carbohydrates: 43 grams; Sugar: 6 grams; Fiber: 5 grams; Cholesterol: 9 milligrams; Sodium: 446 milligrams

Orzo Salad With Shrimp and Feta

Ingredients

Kosher salt

8 ounces orzo pasta (about 2 cups)
1/2 pound large shrimp, peeled and deveined (tails removed), coarsely chopped
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 clove garlic, minced
Freshly ground pepper
Grated zest of 2 lemons, plus 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
4 scallions, thinly sliced
1/2 cup chopped fresh mint
1/2 cup chopped fresh dill
1 cup diced English cucumber
4 ounces crumbled feta cheese
3 tablespoons halved kalamata olives
Directions
Preheat the broiler. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente (about 2 minutes less than the label directs). Drain and rinse under cool water; shake off the excess. Transfer to a large bowl and set aside while you make the shrimp, stirring occasionally to prevent clumping.
Toss the shrimp on a baking sheet with 1 tablespoon olive oil, the garlic, and salt and pepper to taste; arrange in a single layer. Broil the shrimp, turning once, until opaque and just cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes.
Add the shrimp, lemon zest and juice, scallions, mint, dill, cucumber, feta, olives and the remaining 1/3 cup olive oil to the bowl with the pasta; toss. Serve immediately or refrigerate, covered, up to 6 hours. (Bring to room temperature before serving.)

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Memorial Day: 10 Unique and very EXPENSIVE grills

Bellyitch Rewind

Just in time for Memorial Day this Monday for you serious grill aficionados, here are 10 unique grills owned by true grill-masters willing to fork down thousands on a grill like this Mobile cylce barbecue pit found at New York’s RUB restaurant. For hot roders only! Don’t saddle up to this grill unless you have a Harley in your garage at home!

Here are 9 other grills for the serious barbecuer willing to fork down thousands on a grill!
The one-of-a-kind grill is an Allwyn Pramelator made in London circa 1906. The hood folds down to complete the smoker effect.
This $1250 Pig Cooker  was created by artist Joel Haas. Great! Just the thing to remind you of what the thing you’re cooking looked like alive. Eeek!
This automobile grill is the ultimate recyclable. Why tow away that old broken down car in the yard, when you can turn it into a cooking surface? Innovative!  source
Gun owners really love their guns and some so much, they’re willing to create giant one to look like a Smith & Wesson Magnum 500 revolver. source
How about a Montero GTS grill made from a broken down classic Holden Montero? This one is in a private home in Australia.
Could it be? Yes a grill powered by a 5.7 liter V-8 HEMI engine. Wowee! It was once part of a Chrysler Group’s 2005 “What can you HEMI?” contest. Winner! Now you know you’re meat is going to be WELL DONE when it hits your plate, whether you want it to or not!
This Nascar BBQ sells for $16,995 and is full sized stainless steel and comes with a CD/DVD combo with 6 speakers. Nothing like grilling while watching a movie and listening to tunes at the same time! We are a multi-tasking generation, after all!
This German locomotive grill sold on eBay for over $12,000. wowee! Source
This Dragon BBQ Grills are really unique with only 3 or so being made. The first one sold for $65,000 and a second listed for $90K. It is a functional grill that is also part sculpture. Amazing!  But um not nearly $100K amazing! source
Bonus: Now for explicit humorologist only, there is this Rude Hot Dog Cooker aka Roast my Weenie! Weiners for Weiners maybe?

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