Kristy Lee Cook Performs Mariah Carey’s “Forever” Tuesday, April 15
American Idol Mariah Carey week was like a dream come true for me. I have been a fan of Mariah Carey since I was a little girl and to hear these songs re-done was awesome. What was truly awesome to me was Kristy Lee Cook’s performance of “Forever.” Mariah said that Kristy’s rendition gave her goosebumps, and I have to admit, it gave me goosebumps too.
Her performance on Tuesday was phenomenal. She sang it with a country twist but she didn’t make it too country, which was refreshing. Mariah Carey week could have been an absolute disaster for Kristy, since she lacks a little “flavor” that I think makes Mariah Carey so special. She usually puts such a country twang that it completely changes the song, but tonight, she rocked it out!
Even though I am not typically a fan of Kristy I felt that she gave one of the best performances (if not the best) of the night. Tonight, she had a little bit of the “flavor.” Maybe she truly is coming into her own, after working out a few kinks. Her Tuesday performance was truly amazing. Kudos to you, Kristy!
I’m not sure that Kristy has made it to front runner status yet. She is definitely getting better each week, so she might reach front runner status but at this point I think there are a few other contestants that can give her a run for her money, like David Archuleta, Syesha Mercado, David Cook (who did an awesome rendition of “Always Be My Baby”) or Jason Castro.
Most of the remaining contestants are very talented and all have a chance at winning this season. If the winner was being chosen from tonight’s performance, the winner would be Kristy Lee Cook. She made an excellent song choice and gave an excellent performance. If she keeps going in the same direction, she could easily be at the top!
Beginner’s Sewing Projects: Gifts You Can Make Your Kids
Sew Children’s Gifts for Holidays, Birthdays and More
If you’ve learned the basic techniques and basic stitches in sewing you’re ready to start making your kids some fabulous gifts! You might not have much confidence in your sewing abilities right now, but once you see the fantastic things you can make for your children, you’ll gain lots of confidence! Make things for their birthdays, holidays or just because you feel like it! They’ll love the new gifts, and you’ll have so much fun making them, the party will never stop!
Make a tub play area for your child – or a friend’s – by starting with an old blanket. Set the blanket in the bathtub and cut it around the edges so that it fits well. Start pinning a wide ribbon around the top edges of the cut blanket. As you go along, create small puckers, then cover them with the ribbon. These puckers will allow you to shape the blanket like the tub. Stitch the ribbon on and remove the pins. If you want extra padding use fabric glue to attach pieces of foam to the underside of the blanket, on the bottom and the sides. Babies often cry to go in the bathroom with Mom, and now when ever Mom is fixing her hair or getting ready for work, baby can play in the tub – protected from harm. Throw in some toys and he or she will be all set.
Make bed pockets where kids can tuck in books, tv remote and other items. The pocket set can hang off the side or the end of the bed. Cut a long, wide piece of cloth and hem all the way around it. One end of the cloth will be pushed way back, between the box springs and mattress, while the other side hangs over the bed. Sew on pockets from old garments or create new ones from squares or rectangles of fabric. Or, just stitch one long, rectangular piece across the bottom that hangs near the floor. Stitch sections into this piece and kids can store many items. These are great for adults’, too.
Make your little girl a cute purse by starting with a rectangular, cloth place mat. Lay the mat so that one short side is facing you. Grab the edge and pull it up to the center – or slightly higher. Pin and stitch up the sides. As you near the top edge place the end of a piece of roping, ribbon or other strap material. Finish sewing and back-tack the corners. Fold the flap over and stitch on a velcro piece to close the purse. You can decorate the purse with fabric paints, tassels, fake jewels, sequin and other embellishments.
Make a purse that features your child’s favorite cartoon character by simply stitching two wash cloths together. Leave the top corners open and insert a long strand of beads for the handle. Cut the cartoon character from a piece of cloth. You’ll find many characters at a store that sells fabric. Use fabric glue to attach the image then use fabric paints to outline the design. The paints will hide the raw edges and secure them to the washcloth. This little purse is perfect for any young girl.
Make backpacks for little kids by using a towel and folding it as you did the above place mat. Lay the towel so that one short end faces you, fold it up a little over halfway, then stitch the sides shut. Before sewing the sides you can stitch on pockets, loops and other holders. Use wide ribbon or wide binding to make the straps for the backpack. Use a piece of velcro to secure the flap.
Make a gift for a boy or a girl by cutting 2 long pieces of fabric. The fabric should be about twice as wide as a crayon. Lay the two pieces of material right-sides together. Stitch around one short end and both long sides. Turn the material right-side out. Stitch closed. Fold one long end up until it is only a couple of inches away from the edge. Stitch down the sides and you’ll create one very long pocket. Lay a crayon next to the edge of the pocket and draw a line beside it. Move the crayon to the opposite side of the line and draw another line. Continue moving the crayon down the pocket, drawing lines to mark where each crayon will go. Stitch these lines and you’ve created a unique crayon holder. Tie shut with a ribbon, mark a spot where the ribbon meets the fabric, and tack the ribbon to the cloth in this area. Kids can roll the crayon holder into a circle then tie shut with the ribbon. Make each narrow pocket slightly wider to create a magic marker holder; make the pockets much longer to hold colored pencils. Stitch a length of string across the unfolded edge of the crayon holder, and leave excess string on each end, and kids can wear the crayon holder instead.
Make scarves for the family by cutting long pieces of sweater material. Cut the pieces wide, place right sides together, then stitch along the length. Turn the piece right-side out and stitch the ends closed or just tie them in a knot. Other materials you can use include lightweight blanket material or even velour.
Teen girls will love towels they can wear around their bedrooms or after they’ve been swimming. Take a large towel and fold it in half, then stitch the edges together. Stitch a piece of elastic around one end of the towel and the girl can simply slip the towel on. Or, don’t create a side seam at all but instead, overlap the towel at the top. Pin the overlap shut for the moment, stitch the elastic in, then remove the pin. This creates a split-side towel that’s great for wearing after swimming. You’ll really love practicing your new sewing skills and your kids will love all the new gifts they receive! Keep on practicing and you’ll soon be making them lots of clothes, curtains, bed sets…
Soap/Candles – This gift is appropriate for women, mostly. Soap can be given to girls too young to be given candles. You don’t have to be a whiz to do this. Stores have kits that you can use to make candles and soaps. Places like Hobby Lobby and Michaels are pretty much guaranteed to have an excellent variety. You can add dyes and fragrances, and a variety of different shaped molds are available. The prices are pretty friendly, too, since you’re only paying for the supplies and doing the work yourself. If your first attempts aren’t as attractive as you’d like, keep them for your own personal use.
Baked goods – Almost everyone would appreciate some sweet treats, but a good target for this sort of gift would be college students and people who are moving out on their own for the first time. Cupcakes, cookies, brownies, pies, cakes, and casseroles are some examples. Anything that does not require heating before they eat it, or anything easily reheated, is a good idea. Recipes are readily available online, or just grab a cookbook. Cooking not your thing? Try something simple. Cookies are hard to mess up. You don’t have to make them completely from scratch. Buy Pillsbury. They won’t know the difference. Most people don’t care either way. So few people go to such efforts they’ll still be thankful for the thought.
Photo album – This is a good gift for people who are very close to you. Maybe you have pictures they’d like to have? Pictures of you or your family, or pictures you have of that person, or pictures of you and them together. Just take the negatives to a photo center and have some more copies made. You can put them in a photo album or in a scrapbook so that you can add decoration and your thoughts. Also, framing a favorite or significant portrait is a nice thought as well.
Blanket – Everyone loves blankets. Plus, they can range in difficulty, from extremely easy to extremely difficult. Most people aren’t up to making quilts. But if you are, there are plenty of books on the subject. Or you can consult a relative. A simple fleece throw is nice and easy to make. You can add their initials or a special trim to make it a unique and special gift. You can also crochet or knit a blanket, though this requires more effort. You can also buy blankets that have spaces for cross stitching, so you can personalize them that way. Cross stitching is very easy to pick up if you haven’t done it before.
Stationary – This is very easy and very impressive looking. If you have Microsoft Publisher or something similar, I would recommend using that. You can also use Word, though it is more limiting. Create some stationary using the person’s initials, their business or personal information, or their name as the heading. You can print it on nice thick paper, or on paper with a fancy border. They have nice stationary paper at Staples and Office Depot. Scrapbook paper works nicely as well, if it’s standard size. Don’t be afraid to get creative and add embellishment, but keep in mind the sort of person you’re giving it too. Give them a thick stack of it, and include some envelopes and some sealing stickers that match. Return address labels are nice, too, and easy to make with Publisher or Word. Just tie the whole thing together with an attractive ribbon or some twine, and they’ll love it.
Pressed flower bookmark – You can also use a three leaf or four leaf clover if the person receiving your gift is male or doesn’t like flowers. Simply pick the flower/clover, and find a thick book to press it in. They make kits for this purpose, but you don’t really need them. After a while the flower will be flat and dry. To preserve it all you have to do is laminate it, and cut the lamination to a nice bookmark size.
Mug – This is a great gift for a parent or a grandparent. You can buy whatever color mug you like, and decorate it with ceramic markers. Michael’s sells these in a variety of colors. You can decorate it with flowers, a witty remark, something that shows what they’re interested in, or simply their initials. The markers are made for this sort of thing, so you don’t have to worry about it wearing off or looking bad later.
Tie-dye t-shirt – This is a great gift for the fun people in your life, and it’s also one of the more fun and easy ideas. Kids can do this, too. You can buy a tie-dye kit, or look up some do-it-yourself instructions online. You can use as few or as many colors as you’d like. It just depends on who you’re making it for. What’s their favorite color? Sports team? Use those colors if you can, it’ll make it more personal and they’ll be more likely to wear it.
Coupon book – Not real coupons, of course, but little slips of paper they can redeem for things like hugs, hot chocolate made by you, or back-rubs. This is appropriate for the people you are around on a day-to-day basis, like parents or spouses. Just write whatever pops into your head on little slips of paper, roughly the size of a coupon book, and staple in together. You can include expiration dates, or requirements similar to the “buy one get one free” idea. You can give them a lot of coupons, or just a few. I would recommend giving them a lot.
Monogram – Most people love to have their initials on something. Anything that you can paint, sew, iron, or stick their initials on that they use every day qualifies. Handbags, golf bags, luggage, book bags, key chains, blankets, pillows, mugs, jewelry, towels, or journals are some examples. Depending on which one you pick, it could be easy or difficult. But the little touch of personalization makes it really special to the person who gets it.
A Comparison of the Film The Gift and William Faulkner’s As I Lay Dying
The literary novel As I Lay Dying by William Faulkner is a rather interesting classic about the perspectives of death that members of a family have as they go on a long journey to bury their dead mother Annie. Similarly the film called The Gift which is directed by Sam Raimi is a peculiar and eerie film that features the local townspeople’s reaction to the death of a woman named Jessica King as they try and solve her murder case. Many themes overlap between the two works of literature such as the physic vision that Anne Wilson has in seeing the future and the line of physic thought that Darl Bundren has in knowing the thoughts of his siblings. The final similarity is the power of the dead to metaphorically rise from the dead. In both the film and the novel, the images of the dead bodies of both Annie Bundren and Jessica King appear and seem to talk to the people who know them best.
The film “The Gift” stars Keanu Reevesand Katie Holmes but the real focus and main character in the film is Cate Blanchett who plays the role of Anne Wilson, a woman who has the ability to read into the future and the past events through a deck of cards and her mind. It is precisely this telepathic vision that Anne has that causes her to be the center of a small little town in Georgia as controversy swirls around her. Townspeople who look for advice come to her to try and read their futures to get some insight into the unknown. While Anne’s “gift” is debatable as to its true authenticity of being fortunetelling or nothing more than piecing together bits of evidence from the past, this much we learn as certain: Anne is treated as an outcast and is perceived as performing witchcraft in her town. In the book, As I Lay Dyingby Faulkner, the question of the morality of Darl’s line of sight isn’t really focused on as much as his ability to understand what his siblings are thinking without them actually saying anything to him. Darl’s uncanny knack for knowing the thoughts of his sister and brother are precisely what gets him into trouble. Darl is able to understand that his sister Dewey Dell is trying to get an abortion and he also knows that his brother Jewel is really his half brother because of his mother’s affair.
In the film, the death of Jessica King engulfs the entire town as the mystery begins to find her killer. This search for the killer takes its toll on the townspeople, particularly Annie who has nightmares and sees visions of King’s body during the day. Through Annie’s vision, she is able to locate King’s body which is found in a lake and discover the identity of the killer by going back to the murder scene. This one dead body further fuels controversy as to its discovery and Annie’s gift. During the trial, Anne is put on the stand and ridiculed by the defense lawyer and called a “witch” by the suspected killer, Donnie Barksdale. Yet the image of Jessica King’s body lingers with Anne so much so that she continues to have nightmares about finding the right killer and getting justice for King. This search brings her to King’s fiancé who we find out in the end has killed his future wife because she cheated on him. The book by Faulkner doesn’t have quite the same plot details as the film, yet the point is made even still. It is the body of Addie Bundren which is the focal point of the novel and her dying wish to be brought into the town where he parents are buried. In the book, Addie speaks to the reader from the grave which is creepy and eerie at best. From the grave, Addie informs the reader of her hatred for her children and husband and her affair with a minister. Finally, the reader is told of the hoax and revenge that Addie is trying to extract on her family for taking her life away as she became a mother.
Finally, the most intriguing concept that both the film and the book both bring out is the power of the dead to influence society. One of the most controversial scenes in the film “The Gift” that is certainly up for debate among literary and film critics is whether Annie herself defended herself from Jessica King’s fiancé, Ben. Annie was taken to the lake by Ben and as she finally realized that Ben was the real killer, Ben is ready to strike Annie and kill her. As the lightening strikes in the background, we see what appears to be Annie’s friend Buddy striking Ben and knocking him down. Then Buddy proceeds to drag Ben’s body into the trunk of the car. Later on in the film, we learn that hours earlier, Buddy had committed suicide in a mental hospital. So the scene begs the question: Did Annie, a fragile and scared woman, really have the strength and courage to defend herself from the killer? The scene recognizes the power of the dead to act beyond the grave as we are led to believe that in some way, Buddy’s spirit helped to save Annie’s life.
A comparison from this theme can also be made to Faulkner’s book as the power of Addie’s spirit comes into question in two scenes where Jewel saves her body from both fire and water. During the flood, Jewel conjures up his strength to rescue Addie’s coffin and when Darl ignites a fire inside a barn to burn his mother’s coffin, Jewel bravely dashes into the barn to rescue the body. These two acts of courage also ask the question about the impact that Addie’s spirit had on recovering her body and continuing the journal to her burial. Jewel was Addie’s favorite son as he was born out of the affair that she had during her marriage. It is up to the reader’s interpretation how the spirit of Addie from the dead had on her family and her favorite son, Jewel. These themes in both the film “The Gift” and the book As I Lay Dying all show us the power of the dead to influence society.
If you had asked me this question one and a half years ago I probably would have given a silly answer. After receiving many fantastic gifts at my daughter’s baby shower, I knew I was set. About a month into her life I began to realize which items were more useful than others. Now that I am six months pregnant with my 2nd child, I certainly know what I will be asking for on my registry this time around.
-Diapers: You can never ever have too many diapers! Do keep in mind babies are born different sizes. If you plan to buy diapers for someone’s baby shower I would suggest asking around to find out who else may be bringing diapers. Then you can all decide who will buy the newborn, and who will buy size 1. Or if you don’t want to go through the hassle of doing that. You can simply keep the receipt so that the parents can return some of the diapers for a larger size if they may need to do so.
*Note: You should also check with the parents to find out if they plan to use cloth diapers instead of disposable.
-Wipes: Wipes are another fantastic idea. Remember to buy the non-scented wipes. A lot of babies start out with sensitive skin and nearly anything can break them out. They also offer wipes for sensitive skin if you know the parents themselves have sensitive skin so the baby may also.
-Clothes: As far as clothes are concerned this is how I feel. Newborns really stay in onesies and sleepers pretty much 24/7. It is better to keep the regular clothes to a minimum because the babies grow out of them so fast and end up wearing each outfit once or twice. The beanie hats, and socks are also a good gift idea. You have to keep their little heads and feet warm so they don’t get sick!
*Note: If you absolutely want to buy an outfit, make sure that it is one that fits the parents taste. This way you know it will be worn.
-Bibs & Burp Clothes: Another good gift, you never know if the infant is going to be a “spitter” or not. Mother’s should always be prepared. As for bibs, although they won’t be eating baby food for a while, bibs are still a good item to have for babies who spit up on a regular basis.
-In The Bathroom: Baby wash clothes, baby shampoo, baby bathtub, terrycloth robe for after bath. All of these items are fairly cheap. I would suggest staying away from cheap baby shampoo. It can also cause a baby to break out.
-Toys: Newborns may not be interested in most toys due to the fact that their eyes aren’t quite focused yet and they don’t have full control of their body movements. If you get the baby any toys get something that is black and white, this is easier for the baby to see and enjoy.
-Big-ticket items: stroller, car seat, swing, high chair, bouncer, etc. These items are very important and can be very expensive. If you choose to bless your loved ones with a big ticket item I would suggest getting other’s to go in with you so the cost is not so high. Please be sure to read safety reviews on any big-ticket items you may purchase. It will be holding a very important life inside.
-Other: There are other items that some may not think about but are fairly important. Nail clippers (you can also purchase scratch mittens to keep the little one from scratching his/herself and mommy!), gas medicine (many infants keep gas, this is good to have on hand), baby Tylenol or Motrin, and an ear thermometer (they also have pacifier thermometers available but some parents may not be using a pacifier with their little ones). There are probably some things I may be missing but you get the big picture here. Again, as far as pacifiers are concerned, I would leave that up to the parents so that they can choose what they want to do. Some use them, some don’t. Focus on items that will be certainly be used and will make mommy’s life a little easier.
-Books: It’s never too early to start, and you can never have too many!
-Baby Einstein DVDS, or classical music: Although the DVDS can be a little expensive they are such a wonderful gift from newborn and up to start the baby’s brainwaves going. It also seems to keep them content. Classical music CDs or tapes are also a wonderful thing, it not helps get their mind going but it soothes them, great for naptime!
Again, keep all of your receipts in case too many people bless mommy with too much of a certain good thing so that she can exchange them if necessary.
Also, if you absolutely want to give the newborn baby something special and unique. Do it yourself! One of my favorite gifts to give when I hear of a new baby arriving soon is crochet a baby blanket and add the baby’s name and date of birth once the baby is born. If you don’t know how to crochet or knit, that’s fine! You can do this with so many other things, sewing for example. Look up craft ideas on the Internet; you will be surprised what you may find. Another good idea is to create a book just for the baby.
Get some construction paper for the pages, and some to make animals (or another theme) with. Use the letters of the baby’s name to create a book just for him. For example: My son on the way’s first name will be Mateo. I could use M for Moose, A for Alligator, etc. Then create a picture of these animals with the construction paper and other craft ideas. There is always something you can do, just use your imagination, and the Internet!
Note: The most important gift of all you can give a newborn, Tons of hugs and kisses once s/he arrives.
Good luck in your search for a great newborn gift!
Men are simple creatures. They like to play, relax and eat. If you can satisfy one of those primal urges you are already half the way to selecting a perfect gift for a man. A few ideas to satisfy the “Play” urges in a man include:
PLAY: All guys like to play something. Find out what your boyfriend’s favorite “play” pastime is and go for it.
1) Game System: Clearly the most expensive of the “play” suggestions but probably the one that will get the most attention. There are several popular ones to choose from. Your selection should include one that has the interactive capability. You know, where you can stand up and play tennis and your physical motions transfer to the player on the screen. This way you are satisfying his electronic need while at the same time still ensuring he gets some sort of exercise.
2) Video Game: If he already has a system and he is pleased with it, consider getting him the absolute latest release game for that system. The new releases are typically more expensive at first then they are say 6 to 8 months later, but he will have it before his buddies do. Find out what type of game he likes playing then ask the store clerk for the very latest game in that type.
3) Internet Game Subscription: There are so many sites offering game services today. Most of them cost something to join though. These fees are usually rather economical so don’t let that scare you away. Consider the sites that offer multiple games of many different types in addition to the individual sites, referred to as; MMORPG: Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game.
4) Sports Equipment: Is your boyfriend particularly athletic? Then consider getting him something branded, like a sports team sweatshirt or jersey. Make sure whichever one you select brandishes the name of one of his favorite teams and not one of the opposing teams. If he is personally involved, consider shoes for his sport of choice.
RELAX: After a good round of playing electronically interactive games or even running around on a basketball court for a couple of hours, your man will want to take a break.
1) Bathrobe: Not just the ordinary cotton ones you see on the department store sales rack. Get him the thick and thirsty terry robe. Get one of those that hang to the floor; something he can wrap up in if he feels a need to. Choose a color that screams masculine though. It’s one thing to be caught wearing a bathrobe but if it is a pastel blue one then the trouble just gets thicker. A nice dark brown or black is best. Even white would work.
2) Massage Appointment: The ultimate in relaxing would be a professional massage day, or spa day. Try to mask the inference to a woman’s spa day by calling it simply “a massage.” Make sure the masseuse includes a scalp massage; this one will put him to sleep he will be so relaxed.
3) Favorite Movie: Action, Adventure, Fantasy, it doesn’t matter. Just get him one of his favorite ones and promise to sit there and watch it with him. That’s the important thing; watch it with him. Make it as close to a new release as possible. This to ensure he has not seen it yet.
4) Universal Remote: Don’t just buy the remote in a vacuum pack and expect him to set it up. Bring your cable guy out or get your brother-in-law to help set it up. It should be ready to go when your boyfriend first unwraps it. Get the one that will control up to five components so he can do whatever he wants from one remote and one remote only.
EAT: This is probably one of the easiest categories to fulfill; all guys like to eat and usually they aren’t all that specific about what they are eating.
1) Breakfast Buffet: Take him out to your local buffet for breakfast. I say breakfast because that is the one meal we don’t always get to go out for. There are plenty of evening dinners in his future but breakfast offers such a myriad of interesting foods. Try to make it a buffet so he can have his choice of what and how much.
2) Pizza In: Order pizza and have it delivered or you go pick it up. You can wrap this one up with one of the relax titles. Make it so your boyfriend does not have to lift a finger to provide dinner, at least this one evening. Get plenty of pizza so he can have seconds later on in the evening while he is enjoying one of his “play” gifts.
3) Snack Selection: While he is innocently sitting in his new bathrobe, getting ready to watch his new release DVD, prepare a platter of his favorite finger foods. No knives and forks for this guy; let him caveman it all the way. Some selections could include veggies and dip, little hotdogs, cheese and crackers, pizza rolls, potato chips and so on. Don’t look at it as not being good for him, look at it as one night of guiltless pleasure.
4) Chocolate Chip Cookies: Every guy likes chocolate chip cookies, especially if they are hot from the oven. You don’t have to go so far as to make them from scratch but don’t settle for a bag of pre-made cookies either. You can get buckets of cookie dough, or pouches of precut cookies or one of many other “ready to cook” presentations. The magic here is that you had to put them in the oven, time them and then take them out. You did it all for him. Now he has a platter of hot, melty, chocolate chip cookies.
I would like to repeat that most men are not picky. They like creature comforts before anything else. Please try to discipline yourself and don’t fall for the necktie, T-shirts, socks, watch, cologne or soap on a rope stand bys. He can get those anytime he wants and will, if he wants them. The littlest bit of thought will result in your boyfriend getting a piece of happiness that he will remember for a long time. He will also remember who got it for him just as long.
Step 1: Heat the oil in a deep fryer or frying pan to 325 degrees. Caution, if the oil starts to smoke or catches fire, immediately cover the pan and turn off the source of heat. Never pour water on an oil fire.
Step 2: Cut the potatoes lengthwise into narrow strips resembling french fries. To optimize efficiency, cut the potatoes into narrow slivers, then stack the slivers on top of each other to cut again into narrow strips. The more narrow the strips, the fast the fries will cook and the tastier they will be. In my opinion the fries taste better with the skin on them, but if you want skin less fries, you can peel the potatoes beforehand.
Step 3: Carefully place the fries in the hot oil and cook 5-10 minutes, or until slightly golden brown.
Step 4: Turn off the oil, take the fries out, strain out the oil, sprinkle some salt on the fries, and enjoy!
How to Cook a Homemade Philly Cheesesteak Easy, Delicious, Quick and Cheap!
Create a Famous Dish, at Home, Delicious and Easy on a Frugal Budget that All Can Afford
One day my wife talked to me about Philly Cheesesteaks, how easy they seem to be to make and yet how there were hardly any restaurants in ‘our City’ that made it. I researched online, reading multiple lines of text, watching various videos, commenting and rating the various content I came across, and finally took the plunge to take action and see for myself how easy and delicious (and quick) it could be! Note: this was several months ago and since then quite a few restaurants have indeed attempted to recreate the famous Philly Cheesesteaks. I still recommend the homemade version, as its fun to create, delicious to eat and in these troubling economic times for all, a great way to be frugal and cost conscious!
I used delicious sukiyaki meat from the local supermarket, (but you could easily purchase other meat and slice the meat thinly), regular onions, and Kraft QuickMelt Cheese and half sized baguettes. I figure my total costs to make about 4 (four) came to about $10.
Slice the baguette down the middle, chop two onions, slicing off the top and bottom of the onion, so as to get crunchy circular shaped onion rings, and then grate about a half cup of cheese per portion.
If you are oil conscious, lightly grease your pan with low fat unsaturated butter (not oil) – if you do NOT care proceed with a tablespoon or two of sunflower oil, and set the heat on medium. Once the butter/oil is moderately hot, put in the onions, stirring them around quickly. As the onions start to become less crunchy, put the to one side ad put in the meat and start cooking it until the meat becomes brown. You can then add a little salt and pepper to taste prior to pouring the grated cheese over the meat to melt.
You can then place the baguette directly onto the pan to grill the outside and inside. After about 2 minutes you can take the baguette out, placing it on a plate, and then adding the onions, meat and melted cheese. Allow to cool or grab your favorite beverage before admiring, and then chowing down, on your homemade, easy, delicious and quick Philly Cheesesteak! Enjoy!
Second Note: Not all of you will like the onions, so please leave out this step. I’d still add however that onions are not only delicious but great for your blood flow and great for your skin!
Dating in, or having a date night at home rather than going out, is becoming increasingly popular. Dating at home is good for times when you can’t go out because of your budget or other reasons. Even if you don’t go out for a meal, though, you can still have great food.
Here are some ideas to help you have the best food possible for your at home date.
1. Tie in your food with your activity.
For example, if you’re watching a movie, pick a food that relates to it. Watch the incredibly romantic Chocolate and serve chocolate fondue, or watch the sweet and funny My Big Fat Greek Wedding and eat falafel. Or you could pack a picnic hamper to bring out into the garden with you as you stargaze.
Dates are not the time to count calories or worry about your waistline. Just enjoy yourselves. Indulge in foods that are decadent, delicious, and sensual. Make romantic foods like these rose cupcakes, and then you can decorate with the rest of the roses, or scatter rose petals on the table (or anywhere else). If you love rich foods, but never normally eat them, think of foods in creamy sauces and decadent desserts. Date nights in are a time to indulge in great food-worry about your diet another day.
3. Serve aphrodisiacs
Some foods have been associated with love and romance for centuries. Serving a menu full of reported aphrodisiacs can be fun, and you can decide for yourself whether they work.
4. Finger Foods
Make an intimate atmosphere by making finger foods and feeding them to each other. If you don’t want to cook your own, a lot of supermarkets sell pre-made canapés in their party food sections.
5. Cook Favourites
If you know that your partner’s absolute favourite food is lasagna, but you rarely take the time to make it, then consider making lasagna for your date night. If you really love ice cream, open up a tub of ice cream and grab two spoons. Or dish up ice cream with a buffet of toppings: bananas, chocolate sauce, nuts, cream, and cherries. No matter what you choose, it will probably be cheaper to cook it yourself than it would be to go out and eat (plus there’ no tip).
6. Let someone else do the work
If you’ve both had busy days or just really don’t feel like cooking, then you can always get take-away or a food delivery for your date night in. Sometimes ordering pizza and eating it straight from the box is just what the two of you may need. For a cheaper option, many supermarkets offer pre-made or ready made meals that you can just warm. It’s usually cheaper than eating out but saves you the work of making something.
7. Be Inspired
If you want to make something special, but aren’t sure what to do, then flip through your cook books or look at some food blogs for ideas.
Graduation Gifts and Business Success Tool Starter Kits
Success Tool Gifts ,Business Ideas, and Fun Experiences as Graduation Gifts
This article offers college graduation gift ideas in all price ranges from the super tight budget , including Free gifts on up . We share more moderately priced gifts and freebies than extravagent. This article includes websites for you to continue your search for the perfect college graduation gift or to make the purchase.
To celebrate graduation with customizable M&Ms , free s/h for orders over $80, personalized special colors, printed messages, and photographs right on each piece of chocolate. www.mymms. com
Many readers want college graduation gifts that provide or help with basic business tools for their graduate. I recently looked at websites that parents gave as gifts to their children. The first website is from the company that developed the website for Holly Madison, a former girlfriend of Hugh Hefner and celebrity Mackenzie Mason.
Building a website with this platform does not require advanced technical skills is www.allowned.com . Plans are available from $29.95 per month or with more features for $40 per month and up.
For a graduation gift under $20, you could reserve your graduate their own web domain name at GoDaddy.com and pay for the year with some basic services.
Another website development company with page and traffic building tools, easy to follow money-making system, and successful sites created by even teenagers who wanted to make money and didn’t have jobs. On a budget, you can pay monthly from $30 . Take the free video tour to see videotour.sitesell.com/successipes.html
Just learned about another Free website promotional tool that’s always free and offers training to help you succeed . It was created by two brothers who have spent the last twenty years online making money . They believe that by giving away the online marketing success tools to enough people, they will build a big following. www.mybwbsite.com/5130676
One of the ways I set up my son for success was to find a health and wellness business that would provide him with products for weight managment and nutrition. Actually I’m dreaming he’ll make enough money and want to pay me back the thousands of dollars I gave him while he was in school. Dreams are free, humor me.
The Zrii products and setting up his business were affordable.The products themselves are endorsed by the Chopra Wellness Center. This is what I gave him cwilk.myzrii.com
My step-neice , graduating with her teaching degree so she can teach special needs students in Missouri, wants to supplement her teaching salary Her gift cost me $63 including s/h to enroll her in Dove Chocolate Discoveries. They told me this promotion ends March 31.
I gave my step son-in-law, Joe, a barbeque fanatic, a box with three products : Sweet N Spicy Coca Rub$10, Chocolate Fig Balsamic Vinagrette $12, and Sweet N Smoky Chocolate BBQ Sauce$12. I can’t wait until he makes us the barbeque dinner with his graduation gift.
Jackie’s gift has a box of Chocolate Truffle Brownie Mix, a Box of Chai Tea Packages, a Box of Cinammon Dusted Milk Chocolate Almonds, and a Bottle of Chocolate Martini Mix( this is a gift meant for adults only) . It has a free 60-day trial website. She’ll be able to buy product wholesale, have chocolate tasting parties, and even recruit others to make more money.The website www.dove-chocolate-discoveries.com/successipes
Experiential gifts create memories , some experiences are expensive others more affordable. There’s Stock Car driving in Florida; sports lessons from pros in golf to archery; half-day Corvette racing in places like Houston; Full-Moon kayak tours in N. Miami Beach, Fl; FlyFishing School in Indianapolis, IN; Hot Air Balloon rides in California; Sunset Clam Bake Dune Tour in MA.
What do some of the more expensive experiental gifts cost? Lessons from sports professionals might range from $150 to $2500 per hour or more. The half-day of Corvette racing is listed on this site about about $629. The site lists thousands of ideas in all price ranges online at www.gifts.com
Other gifts to help your graduating college student include business gifts such as business cards, stationary, headshots for the actors or actresses graduating, professional life coaching or fitness coaching sessions to help them prepare mentally, physically, emotionally, and financially for their futures.
The next two websites offer FREE registration. As a gift to help your graduating student, you could upgrade their registration and gift them more services on these sites for about $14.95 per month or more, your choice of course. These sites can help launch careers or add supplemental income in voice overs, commercials, and entertainment arts.
This article is for imformation purposes only and I do not make any claims as to your student’s success in any business, I’m just sharing with you how to find these possible pathways. All companies are subject to changing their offerings at any time. Register for free and upgrade services if satisfied at www.ExploreTalent.com and www.voice123.com
For customizable, creative college graduation gifts, at the site called Zazzle you can order custom pins to hoodies from $1.45 buttons and up to $50 and up for Sneakers .Zazzle lets you customize clothing, accessories, office products, magnets, stationery, posters, ipad cases, and even ornaments. www.zazzle.com
You can start off a writer’s career with a book, e-book publishing, calendar creation for the graduating photographer using www.lulu.com . If you want to have help getting the graduates’ first book published, promoted, and distributed, look at www.iuniverse.com and www.createspace.com . The gift of an e-book submitted by March 31 through DiscMakers for BookBaby is $99 and includes Free basic formatting into ePub. The regular price is $149.
Book Baby will format and digitally distribute the work to the biggest ebook retailers in the world, making your college graduate’s ebook available on Apple iPad through iBookstore;on Amazon Kindle; Barnes and Noble Nook; and Sony Reader.
Discmakers has an extensive line of options for creating, duplicating, and promoting cds and dvds. www.discmakers.com If this article helps your graduating student get famous, please have him or her contact me and make a guest appearance on my talk show. I love hearing your success stories.
As always, all prices are subject to change without notice, so check details with individual vendors.