All Time Greats… MINGUS!

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Random is as random does

I don’t get to post as much as I’d like to these days. Full time student with life happening kinda makes you prioritize a little differently each day. I know that I am grateful, I understand that the struggles in my world are what people all over this planet would laugh at and call “luxury problems”. Each of us– in our own quest for harmony in our private existence can quickly forget of the struggles of even the people standing next to us. Today I’m going to stop and look around and see if even briefly, I can improve my world by improving the world of someone else. Care to join me?

Cajun Spices

by Christine Watson

I love spicy food! Cajun spices are great with fish, poultry, and meat. This grilling season you could try cajun seasonings in your rubs and sauces.

Cajun seasoning can be used for everything from gumbo to jambalaya to sautéed vegetables and dirty rice. Cajun seasoning also makes a great rub or barbecue sauce.

Just the seasoning

For cajun seasoning you will need:

  • 3 Tbsp onion powder
  • 3 Tbsp garlic powder
  • 3 Tbsp paprika
  • 3 Tbsp black pepper
  • 3 Tbsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 Tbsp ground basil
  • 1 Tbsp ground thyme
  • 1 Tbsp ground bayleaf
  • 3 Tbsp chili powder (optional)
  • ½ Tbsp cumin (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp coarse (Kosher) salt

Mix onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, and peppers in a bowl. Add the basil, thyme, and bayleaf. If you can’t find ground bayleaf you can make it yourself by grinding dried bayleaf in a food processor. Adding chili powder and cumin will really add some heat to this seasoning! Add coarse salt last. This seasoning will last for months as long as you keep it in a sealed container.

The Rub

Make your cajun seasoning a rub by adding 3 Tablespoons brown sugar and mixing well. Some people add oregano to their rub, but I prefer to leave it out. Rub the seasoning into fish, poultry, pork, or your favorite meat then let it sit for about an hour before grilling.

Make it Saucy

Prefer a sauce?

  • ½ cup cajun seasoning
  • 1 cup tomato sauce
  • ½  cup tomato paste
  • ¼ cup white vinegar
  • 2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • ¼ cup maple syrup
  • red pepper flakes

Add sauce to meat 10 minutes before removing from the grill and enjoy!

However you spice up your summer,  spend time with your family and friends, and enjoy good food and good music. These are the best things in life.

To Break or Not to Break (Bread)

We live in the modern age and most of us are perpetually in a hurry. So how do we build strong Family Dinner Cartoonbonds with our family? Eating dinner together is what most of the top results from a Google search on building those bonds will return. The question remains. Is it actually the meal or could it be parents taking the time to be more involved in their kid’s lives that makes the difference?

A University of Florida article called “The Importance of Family Dinners” says that families may not be aware of the benefits that can come from family mealtime. It also states:

Research suggests that having dinner together as a family at least four times a week has
positive effects on child development. Family dinners have been linked to a lower risk of obesity,
substance abuse, eating disorders, and an increased chance of graduating from high school.

In my experience, the deciding factor is parental involvement at a deeper level, not necessarily trying to force everyone’s schedules to meet at the same time each night. In her article “Why We Don’t Need Family Dinners”, Lisa Hefferman said this about trying to coordinate the nightly activity:

We had family dinner almost every night at ever-changing times. Dinner at our house could be at 5:15 or at 8:45, with huge complaints all around about not being hungry yet or being starved by a mother who is waiting for a father to return.

Authors Ann Meier and Kelly Musick state that their research shows that the benefits of family dinners aren’t as strong or as lasting as previous studies suggest. They add that their findings suggest that you shouldn’t get down on yourself for not being able to corral everybody for dinner. Instead, just finding different ways to connect that will benefit you all is just as helpful. Engage each other and value the time together. That is what makes the difference.

I suggest taking interest in the things that your kids like. It may not be easy, but it will earn their respect. I like to let my kids tell me something I know and act like I didn’t know it. It helps them to feel like a productive member of the family, and sometimes they surprise me with things I don’t actually know!

A parents work is never done.

Aside

Listen to what Earthly Delights says about creating your own Vanilla Extract:

Why would you want to make your own vanilla extract?
Well, it’s less expensive, for one thing.  For a modest investment, you can make enough high-quality vanilla extract to last you for years.

Why would you want to make your own vanilla extract? Earthly Delights Blog says:
Well, it’s less expensive, for one thing. For a modest investment, you can make enough high-quality vanilla extract to last you for years.

Shopping For Everyone! Web Accessibility makes it happen.

Web accessibility means that the Web can be used by all people regardless of disabilities. accessibility problems don’t always mean physical disability. It could be you wanting to hear a list of items for sale on your favorite shopping site, or a friend trying to interact with a small screen in a bus moving along a bumpy road.

Let’s face it, we need web accessibility standards. I’m a supporter of it, and I think you should be too.