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International Day of Friendship

The International Day of Friendship is a United Nations (UN) day that promotes the role that friendship plays in promoting peace in many cultures. It is observed on July 30 each year.

In 2011, the UN proclaimed the International Day of Friendship with the idea that friendship between peoples, countries, and cultures can inspire peace efforts and build bridges between communities. The UN wanted for the day to involve young people, as future leaders, in community activities that include different cultures and promote international understanding and respect for diversity.

July 30 is also National Cheesecake Day, so treat yourself with a slice (or two) of this decadent dessert made of cream cheese, eggs, sugar, and a graham cracker crust.

For a tasty treat you can also try Cheesecake Fruit Salad recipe here.

Cheesecake Fruit Salad
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Moms pizza

Is your July 4th exploding with fun?

Every year in America on July 4th, we celebrate our freedoms. Most of are looking forward to great food friends and family, and a great show of fireworks to finish it off.

In cities and towns large and small people gather for bbqs, potato salad, swimming and maybe some yard games. Those more inclined to rest spend time in the shade, surrounded by good conversations and a chance to catch up. Sip refreshing libations for children and adults. Watch the children expend their energies. Or simply enjoy you peace and quiet in red, white, and blue. On this day Americans happily fly the flag of our nation with pride. You see, this flag represents the sacrifices that have been made both here at home and abroad to give us what we enjoy today. It is unique to this country even though lots of others have done the same. Each independent nation on this world we call earth has a symbol like this. Whether born here, or not we stay here for the unique chance to make our own American dream.

Our traditionally consists of grilled hamburgers, hotdogs, ribs, and or chicken. On occasion, we have even done t-bone steaks. Of course deviled eggs, potato salad, fresh veggie tray, baked beans, chips, flag cake, fruit salad, and watermelon, make for a filling meal.

Our family follows the tradition of fireworks, for the evenings entertainment. We leave it to the professionals to display an awe filled pyrotechnic show. Ours are usually choreographed to music played on a local station.

As I’ve grown older and faced health challenges, I’ve grown to appreciate my father’s stance of watching our local display on tv….in air conditioning, with volume control. My dad’s favorite movie the last 10 years he was with us was Independece Day. He would pull it out every July 4th to watch again. I wish he had been here to see the sequel he wanted.

Will Smith (Actor), & 2 more

As I look at the goings on in our world today, I’m reminded of the speech given in the movie. Is something like that going to be what it takes for humanity to put aside the characteristics I see dominating the news? I truly hope not.

As we prepare for our nation’s birthday this, July 4th, the love, patriotism, and family traditions continue to shape our future generations. From our family to your have a happy and safe 4th of July.

One of my favorite movies.

Crockpot BBQ Ribs

Feel like BBQ? Fon’t want to deal with the heat, bugs and out doors? These set it and forget it barbecue ribs will become a favorite.

3-5 lbs pork or beef ribs

1 can coke or ginger ale (my secret to melt in your mouth tender) I use diet.

Your favorite bbq sauce. We love half Baby Ray’s and half KC Masterpiece.

Put ribs in bottom of crock pot. Pour soda on top. Let sit 5 minutes before adding sauce.

Turn on low for 6 hours. Enjoy juicy tender bbq ribs with your favorite side. These are so good and so easy they are an easy weeknight meal.

Crock-Pot Cook & Carry 6-Quart Oval Portable Manual Slow Cooker | Stainless Steel (SCCPVL600S)

$29.68

  • Spacious 7-quart manual slow cooker serves 8+ people or fits a 6-lb. roast; Polished, silver stainless steel exterior with black accents and plastic handles
  • Easy-to-use locking lid featuring lid gasket provides extra seal for less mess on-the-go
  • Set cooking time to high and get a hot meal in no time or set it on low and tonight’s dinner can cook while you’re at work
  • Keep food at an ideal serving temperature for as long as you need to with the convenient warm setting
  • One-pot cooking means there are less dishes to clean, plus the lid and removable stoneware are dishwasher safe

Summer Sun

It’s summer, and this time of year we all like to spend time in the great outdoors. With the sun shining high, we vibrate with anticipation to get outdoors. Be it camping, hiking, backyard bbq, the pool or the beach, please remember, with the warmer temperatures, to drink plenty of water, use protection from the harmful effects of the sun, and avoid the possibly deadly consequences of heat and/or sun stroke.

  • The daily recommended amount of water is 8 – 16 oz glasses a day. That increases dramatically the longer you play in the sun. As you sweat, that fluid must be replaced. Sodas, alcoholic drinks, and energy drinks won’t do the job. In fact, some can do more harm than good. They provide sugary, empty calories without the electrolytes that fuel your boby. Cocktails and beer deplete your fluids, making you even more dehydrated. Pure waters, sparkling waters, and sports drinks, help to replace the electrolytes your bodies needs. Make sure you drink at least half again as much as you normally would while having your fun in the sun. Get a great recipe here.

  • Wear protective clothing. That sounds like an oxymoron, doesn’t it? With the heat of the summer most of are thinking about how little we can wear to stay cool. Things like sunglasses that block uv rays protect your eyes. A large brim hat protects the top of your head from sunburn. It also provides shade to your face, neck and sometimes shoulders.
  • Adequate sunscreen will help block the damaging effects of the sun. Children especially need to wear sunblock. I’m a redhead, so I learned about the damaging effects of the sun at a young age. I don’t tan. I go from extremely pale to lobster red in a very short amount of time. Like babies, I have to use a sunscreen with spf 40 or higher. I blister easily and you can easily see where I did damage in my younger days trying to keep up with my friends who tan. Take it from me, the worst places to sunburn are under your hair, and the backs of your knees.
  • Avoid the most dangerous times of the day. The suns rays are the most dangerous for anyone between the hours of 10am and 3pm. If you’re heading for some fun in the sun, you’re get less direct sun before 10am or after 3pm. It’s best to avoid doing yard work or gardening during these peak sun times. If you must perform these activities during these times take care to protect yourself and know the warning signs of things like heatstroke.
  • Don’t be deceived by shade. I would give my mother the excuse of our pool being in the shade, to get out of wearing sunscreen. Trust me when I tell you, shade from a tree or other porous material will not protect you from the sun. You still need sunscreen!

  • Water reflects the suns rays. We’ve all seen people in movies who use those reflective panels to direct the rays. Like most, I thought, hey, I’m under the water, it will help protect me from the suns rays. While water does help diffuse the suns rays, it also reflects it back. So, if you wear the hat in the water, it’s directing those rays right back onto your shaded face and shoulders. Same rules here, make sure you wear the sunscreen. That tan is great when you’re young, but, as you age, that damaged skin begins to look like leather. The potential of developing skin cancer from those areas is also very high. The bandages and/or scars after having cancers removed from a place like your face are not attractive later. Indeed, if not caught, it can become something much worse than skin cancer.

  • Back to the fun. You celebrate family and holidays with a backyard bbq. Again, heavy hydration, will keep you healthier and cooler. Take frequent breaks from the heat and sun, on a patio, a porch, a pavillion, or in the house. Not only does taking such a break provide a temporary resbite, from the sun and heat, but keeps you from the overheating, that leads to sun stroke or heat stroke.

Stay safe and enjoy the summer fun and make memories you’ll cherish for years to come. I would love to hear how you spend your summer time. Drop us a comment letting us know. Don’t forget to like and share on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Pintrest.

Refreshing Summer Drinks

1 cucumber, sliced

1 lemon sliced

1 lime sliced

1/4 c chia seeds (optional)

Optional herbs I use mint with citrus or basil with berries. Just press to help release the oils contained in the leaves before adding to your favorite. Lavender lemonade is really good as well.

4 liters tonic or sparkling water

I love this style as it fits in the refrigerator door.

68 Ounces Glass Pitcher with Lid, Hot/Cold Water Carafe, Juice Jar and Iced Tea Pitcher by Purefold

I like this as it fits in the refrigerator door.

Mix all ingredients together in large gallon pitcher. Stir let sit several hours to infuse flavors. Add more tonic or sparkling water if needed. Serve over ice for a crisp, refreshing, and long hydrating summer cooler. The cucumber gives a fresh crisp flavor to citrus infused flavors. The optional chia seeds will soak up and release fluids as they digest. You can vary this recipe by adding different fruits. I like kiwifruit and honeydew melon as well as the cucumber. Intresting fact cucumber is already 70% water so adding some slices as editable garnish is a great way to add to the hydration in your glass.

Estilo 2 gallon Glass Single Mason Jar Beverage Drink Dispenser With Leak Free Spigot, Clear by Estilo

Bonus tip: If you forgot to chill the wine or taking it onto the patio, keep some grapes in the freezer. Green or red can then be added to your glass to keep it cool, without watering it down like regular ice.

Mr. Santa

Dear Santa,

Thank you for everything. I have a little problem that we dealt with this year and I’m asking your advice e on how to avoid this next year. I moved home after a stoke that left me permenaley disabled. So my husband and I moved into my mom’s house as she was there all alone, We were bothspending a great deal at tine and the financial advantages work well for all. In October hurricane Micheal hit the Gulf Coast so my youngest brother, wife and 2 kids took refuge from the storm. Like so many they lost everything. Thier home, they were renting, got a tree through it. Everthing was soaking wet and then developed mold. So as the children and parents could really use a dose of holiday cheer, we endevored, over thier protests to make it a good Christmas for all.

My husband spent three weeks helping me decorate, cook, buy and wrap presents, knowing the joy would be seeing thier faces on Christmas Day. So we spent a good amount of time with all the preperations. On Christmas eve we were up until 4am putting the finishing touches on packages, filling stockings, and any last minute things left to do. We planned to try and get a little sleep since the kids didn’t get in bed despite anyone’s best efforts till 11pm. Thinking they would sleep in just a little we planned to get up between 9 and 10 the next morning. Three year olds do not have the same time zone as the rest of us. 6am three yr olds are up begging, not quietly, to open presents. Anybodies present under the tree.

The scene

Mom works at the hospital so Christmas day is a workday. They prompted by an early morning wake up decide they can no longer contain or restrain a certain 3 year old boy. I am roused from slumber myself and informed that Santa has been here and the children can no longer be put off. As I am disabled I use a hospital bed that will not fit in our bedroom. Knowing how much my husband wants to see this I call him. I know we went to bed 2 hours ago so I’m expecting him not to be thrilled with this but we can take a nap later.

The conversation goes as follows;

Him- What?

Me – Santa has been here.

Him – Who?

Me – Santa

Him – Who?

Me – Santa Claus.

Him – Do you know what time it is? We just went to bed.

Me – They are opening presents and I thought you would want to see.

Him – Who did you say was here?

Me -Santa, I thought you would want to see.

Him – (Emphatically) “No”

Me – Are you sure?

Him – (very emphatic) “NO”.

Me – Okay go back to sleep.

I have my brother who is handing out the gifts leave his and mine for the most part under the tree. I’m now wide awake. I opened the gifts from my neice, mom, brother and sister-in-law. After thank you’s are exchanged, I ask for my first cup of coffee as my mom heads out the door to the hospital. All is quiet until 10am.

Hubby is up and upon entering the livingroom is astonished to see the only presents remaining is a small stack. He was so disappointed. The conversation went something close to this;

Him – What the heck?

Me – I called you. You said no! You didn’t want to come see.

Him – You said Santa was here.

Me – Yes, Santa was here did you want to come see

Him – no I didn’t want to see someone dressed as Santa. Couldn’t they have waited until I was up?

Me – Have you ever tried talking a three year old into waiting? They wanted to do this so mom could see before she went to work. I called you when this was happening earlier.

Him – No you said Santa was here. Did I want to see him? I thought maybe one of your brothers dressed up as Santa, or you hired someone to come play Santa, and this was the only time they could come. Well this just ruins my Christmas. I really wanted to see this. Why couldn’t it wait till I was here.

Me – I’m sorry that’s why I called you even though it was so early.

Him – You said nothing about them opening presents. All you said was someone dressed as Santa was here.

Me – Do we often invite, strange men in weird clothing into the house with children at 6am? Especially with all the wrapped gifts under the tree? Is this something you think we regularly do even on Christmas morning?

Him – I have set my phone to record all calls for business reasons. It helps me remember what was said and agreed upon when I talk to people about jobs. Let’s play the recording back, because you never said anything about opening presents.

You can hear everything we both said. I talked about Santa having come (I’m in the room with the kids). I repeated it twice. He still says no twice. The next line is garbled, but I’m sure I reiterated they are opening presents. Then after another “no” I say okay go back to sleep then.

Long story short both little and us big kids had a good Christmas. Toys, clothes, household, things we needed and things we like.

My neices came later that afternoon and he got to see them tear into thier gifts. It helped make up at least some of the disappointment of earlier.

So I guess my question is has this ever happened to anyone else?

Even though we had a good laugh about it, how do we not do this again? This experience was too funny not to share. I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas, and we look forward to a bright and happy 2019.

My favorite version

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