How to Cook an Easter Dinner All By Yourself!

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easter bunnyCooking a fabulous Easter dinner at home may seem like a giant un-doable feat! I am here to tell you that if you put your mind to it and set aside some time, it can most certainly be done. Below are some recipes and guidelines to get you going and ready to impress any guest welcomed to your home on April 16th.

First is the ham. When picking out your ham, you want to make sure it’s cooked. You also want to make sure you have enough for your guests. The proper method is ¾ of a pound per person for bone-in ham, and ½ of a pound per person for boneless.

For this recipe you’ll need a Reynolds Oven Bag. This helps contain the juices from the ham while it’s cooking. You will need all the juices in the next recipe.

Easter Hameaster-ham

Ingredients:

1 tbsp flour

Bone – in ham

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
  2. Shake flour in large sized oven bag, place in a roasting pan at least 2 inches deep. Trim skin and fat from ham, leaving a thin layer of fat.
  3. Place ham and fat trimmings in oven bag
  4. Close bag with nylon tie. Cut six ½ inch slits in top.
  5. Bake for 13 minutes/pound or until meat thermometer reads 140 degrees. Let stand in bag for 15 minutes.

This ham should be delicious!

 

The next recipe is one for a delicious treat that is enjoyed down south. Like I said before you’ll be using all the juice from the ham that you gathered with the oven bag.

Greasy Ricegreasy rice

Ingredients:

Rice – extra long grain, white

Baked ham juice

Maybe some chicken broth

With this recipe, you need to use your math skills. We all know that the formula to cooking plain white rice is 2 cups of water to 1 cup of rice. Well, in this recipe, you will be using the ham juice instead of water. So, for every 2 cups of ham juice, you need 1 cup of rice. If you start running out of juice and need just a little more to make a cup, use chicken broth. Like, if you have 3 ¾ cups of ham juice, but need 4 cups to make 2 cups of rice, just add ¼ cup of chicken broth. That should be just fine.

Directions:

  1. Measure out the ham juice from the oven bag.
  2. Use formula from above to determine how much rice you will need.
  3. Bring ham juice to a boil in a large pot.
  4. Add rice.
  5. Cover the pot and turn down heat to Low – or 2 – for 15 minutes. Serve.

 

Collard greens are a big hit down south. They are packed with vitamis and add a pretty green color to your arrangement of foods.

Collard GreensCollard-greens-680x520

Ingredients:

2 bags of fresh, chopped collard greens

1 can chicken broth

1 can beef broth

1 ham hock (can be found at Walmart)

1 ½ tbsp sugar

Salt and pepper to taste

Vinegar is optional

Directions:

  1. Wash the collards by pouring them into a clean kitchen sink filled with cold water. Stir them around with your hands in order to get any dirt off of them. Let them sit while you get the broth ready.
  2. In a large pot, add chicken broth, beef broth, ham hock, and sugar. Bring to a boil.
  3. Transfer collards from sink to pot
  4. Turn down heat to low-medium, or 3-4
  5. Cook for 2 hours until the collards are tender and darker in color.

 

This next recipe is a common fave. It’s sure to make everyone happy campers!

Deviled Eggseaster-deviled-eggs-11

Ingredients:

6 large eggs

2 tbsp mayo

1 ½ tbsp sweet pickle relish

1 tsp yellow mustard

1/8 tsp of salt

Dash of pepper

Directions:

  1. Place eggs in a pot. Cover with water. Bring to a boil. Cover. Remove from heat, let stand for 15 minutes.
  2. Drain immediately and fill saucepan with cold water and ice. Tap eggs firmly on counter until cracks form all over the shell. Peel under cold water.
  3. Slice eggs in half lengthwise and carefully remove yolks. Mash yolks with mayo. Add relish, mustard, salt and pepper; stir well. Spoon yolk mixture into egg whites.

 

Omg I am in love with this next recipe. Pineapple upside down cake has been around in my family for longer than I can remember!

Pineapple Upside down Cakepineapple upside down cake

Ingredients:

1 box of Classic Butter golden cake mix and all the ingredients needed to make it (eggs, butter…etc)

1 can of pineapple tidbits

1 tbsp brown sugar

1 tsp lemon juice

Directions:

  1. Make the cake batter just like it says on the box but instead of using water, use the pineapple juice from the can of pineapple tidbits.
  2. After you have drained and used the pineapple juice from the canned pineapple, dump the pineapple into a medium sized bowl and add the brown sugar. Mix together.
  3. Spread the pineapple/brown sugar mixture onto the bottom of a cake pan and then add cake mixture on top.
  4. Bake it like it says on the box.

 

Enjoy!

 

These recipes will give you a great start on your journey to preparing an Easter dinner all by yourself. I hope you find them easy enough to pull off and yummy enough to make again.

Happy Easter and God bless!

The Benefits of Having a Pet

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cat and ownerPer my own experience, owning and taking care of a cat fills my heart with feelings that are seemingly impossible to ignore. I personally know what it’s like to mourn over another human being, and also know that when I had a cat, I felt better. When I was 22, I made the hardest decision of my life and decided to give my newborn baby to a new family with the hopes and wishes that she would prosper and be provided for under their care. Although I knew I made the right choice given my situation (which was a situation I wasn’t able to escape from), I still felt empty and felt like I had just given all of myself away. Then I met Clark. He turned my life around by filling the space that my daughter would have. He gave me reason to strive to rise from my depressed state so that I could be the cat mom he needed and deserved. There are many reasons that owning a cat or dog are good for you. If you’re struggling on the inside, consider checking out the SPCA!cat burrito

Here are some benefits of owning a pet. Hopefully they will stand out to you and make you want to take action as soon as possible.

  • Reduces anxiety and stress
  • Decreases risk of stroke
  • Therapeutic benefits – Loving and trusting releases a chemical in the brain called oxytocin. By feeling these emotions, you’re soothing and taking care of your body and mind.
  • Boosts immunity- By being exposed to pet dander, you’re increasing your tolerance to allergens and decreasing risk for allergies and asthma.
  • Decreased risk of heart disease and heart attacks
  • Lowers cholesterol levels
  • Increase sociability- Owning an animal makes for a great conversation starter and can enhance the owners ability to socialize.
  • Provides companionshipdog

 

Whether you adopt from a shelter or find a breeder, the only thing that matters is your relationship with your new best friend. It seems that more often than not, people ignore the signs of being lonely. Seeing as how loneliness is extremely unhealthy (not to mention avoidable), that should really make you want to consider who your true friends are and where to find one when in need.

Friendship is based on trust. Make sure your new friend knows that you’re their friend. Afterall, they are animals and take a while to trust. In most cases it won’t be an immediate thing, but instead will take a little patience and time.dog2

Hopefully this helps you decide if having a pet is right for you. If you do decide that it is, check out the SPCA! Those animals are counting on you to at least consider them.

Healthcare Professional Talks With Sales Class

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This past week I invited a business professional to speak in my professional sales class. This woman is named Julie Kumiega and she happens to be my mother.

Julie has been in healthcare for 25 years. She sells healthcare. She went to Buffalo State College and worked in many different places all in the Healthcare Industry. Julie talked about many things dealing with getting jobs, keeping jobs and other things like that. Julie discussed being able to recognize your own value, everyone makes mistakes and that is not only natural, but it’s ok, knowing your style of learning, never pass up opportunities, admit when you’re wrong and ask for help when you need it. Julie currently works at United Memorial Medical Center, however she has worked at the Alzheimer’s Association, the American Cancer Society, and more.

Bringing in professional sales people helps students get ready for the real world by being able to ask these people questions and be given real and accurate information. Thank You Julie for coming in and sharing with the class what you do and giving us plans for success.

By: Emma Shoenecker

The Journey

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My name is Sofiane Hamadi. I was born in France on the periphery of Paris. Although I was very young, I was open to the culture of fashion. People were free to wear whatever they want where I grew up, such as: fancy sneakers with a suit or a tracksuit with some classic shoes. Well, I guess that my visual memory stocked all of those images somewhere in my brain. That may unconsciously explain the fact that today I find myself participating in the production of fashion show. I was focused all my life on soccer and business; I achieved a very good level of soccer and secured a bachelor’s degree in business management. I came to America to pursue my dream of becoming a businessman and playing soccer at a quite decent level. I love challenges and risks; that keeps my mind busy to always find solutions to achieve things on my “to do list”.  However, I have a crazy imagination and enjoy creating and trying new things. At first sight you might not like my fashion style because it is mostly sporty and I wear a lot of simple joggers, but I don’t really fancy to dress up and kind of show off  here since I have no reason to wear fancy clothes. Some days  I have to walk 4 miles to get to school; I prefer more the practical aspect.

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6 Ways to Save & Make Money in College

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Being a college student and having money are two things that do not go together. Little do people know there are dozens of ways to save and make money
as a college student. Although all of these ideas may not make you a millionaire, it can help you have a little bit more money to go out and have some fun, or at least buy something other than ramen noodles for dinner.

money for blogBuy Used Textbooks or Rent

This seems self-explanatory, but many people don’t utilize this option or even know that it exists. For GCC students, the Barnes and Noble store located on campus does have the option to rent certain textbooks. A lot of textbooks have the rental option but as they start to get taken off the shelf there are fewer options. I would recommend getting your textbooks as soon as possible so that you can utilize all of the options. Even if you can’t rent – try purchasing used textbooks. It can cut the cost in half saving you more money.

Freelancing

You may not know what freelancing is, but it’s a great way to utilize your skills to earn some cash. There are tons of websites out there that allow you to post jobs and get paid. Or you can start your own business. There are so many options to take your skills and turn them into money. Some examples include: making a YouTube channel, a blog, an Etsy shop, or just selling something you’re good at making.

One interesting student business I heard about was being the “DD” or designated driver. A friend didn’t have a car and he wasn’t 21 years old, but when his older friends went out they would pay him $25 to drop them off and pick them up a nightclub, and he drove them using their car. It was not only easy money, but also was the right thing to do.

So get clever. Notice a need and fill it. And, I definitely recommend taking the time to research the hundreds of options.

Work Part Time

Again, super self-explanatory, yet so many people think it’s not possible. Today there are so many options for creating your schedule. There are night classes, online classes, and if you sign up as soon as possible you can most likely make a pretty flexible school schedule to fit your liking. Another way is to use time management, this is not only a great skill to have once you’re done with college and begin working, but also for school and work. It is possible to have a part-time or even a full-time job if you utilize all the scheduling tools as well as manage your time so you don’t fall behind in school or work.

Save Your Change

This is something I do, and I love it. Really all you do is take your change (I also take my singles) and put them in a separate place; whether it be a jar, box, bag or some hide-away. Store your change somewhere separate so that you don’t get the urge to spend it. After your savings jar starts to fill up just turn the change in for cash and you have an extra $20+ to spend or save!

Take Advantage of Student Discounts

I’ll keep this short and sweet because again you may already know about this option. Students have no idea just how many student discounts are out there, most people just don’t ask. Don’t be afraid to ask for a student discount and have your student ID with you. Here’s a list of student discounts for college students

Sell Things

Clean out your closet, pick up your room, and sell your old stuff that you didn’t even remember you had. I’ve made a couple hundred dollars with this method. It’s super easy and helps declutter your space. There are so many different websites and apps that can be used by anyone to sell really anything. Some apps I use include Ebay, Mercari, Poshmark, Depop, LetGo, OfferUp and Craig’s List. That’s only a few of them, there are so many options!

Say goodbye to crying about being a broke college student, and say hello to the new things you’ll be able to buy, and the things you’ll be able to do. Let me know if you try out any of these tips, and which one you like the most. Thanks for reading, until next time!

“Stay positive and happy. Work hard and don’t give up hope. Be open to criticism and keep learning. Surround yourself with happy, warm and genuine people.”

-Tena Desae

-Danielle

Aphrodite

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Aphrodite was the goddess of fertility, love, and beauty. She also represents affection, and the attraction that binds people together.  Two different stories explain the birth of Aphrodite. The first is simple: She was the child of Zeus and Dione. According to the second story, however, Aphrodite rose from the foam of the sea.  Aphrodite and her son Eros teamed up to cause Zeus to fall in love with a human named Europa.  Aphrodite loved Adonis. She saw him when he was born and determined then that he should be hers. She assigned Persephone to his care, but Persephone fell in love with Adonis also and would not give him back. Finally, Zeus had to mediate. He judged that Adonis should spend half the year with each.  Aphrodite, Hera, and Athena were the top three contenders for a gold apple marked “For the Fairest.” They asked Zeus to judge the contest, but he refused. Paris, son of the King of Troy, judged the contest instead. Each of the three goddesses promised him something in return; he chose Aphrodite as the winner of the apple. This story of the Judgment of Paris was considered to be the real reason behind the Trojan War.  During the Trojan War, Aphrodite fought on the side of Paris.  Aphrodite rescued Paris from Menelaus by enveloping him in a cloud and taking him back to Troy.

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For this year’s fashion show, Aphrodite will be representing the bridal scene. This is my last semester at GCC and I knew from the beginning I wanted to do the wedding scene. I am inspired by the magical feeling that you can feel within a wedding and it truly captures the beauty and affection of such a special moment. Your wedding day is an event that you will never forget!   My vision for my scene is to have my models looking like it’s there own wedding day. I want the audience to be able to feel the connection between each “bride” and “groom”. Being the last scene of the night, I want the audience leaving with a smile on there face. I hope that it will bring back the great memories some of the guests have experienced in their wedding.  The bridal gowns being used in the scene were donated from Dalia’s Bridal and M.A Carr Bridal, both located in Buffalo, NY.

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All the brides are wearing veils and flower crowns. I am hand making all of them! I had a busy spring break getting all my pieces put together.  Here is just a couple samples of my work so far.

 

All the males will be wearing tuxedos and I have been lucky enough to get some of them donated by Charles Men’s shop, located right here in Batavia.

I also decided I would like to feature bridesmaids, as well as the brides! The bridesmaid dresses being used have been donated from Jill Monroe, who is apart of the fashion advisory board and a fashion seamstress in Buffalo.  Also, four of the bridesmaid dresses have been created by designer, Meghan Hollister who is a high school student.

This is my first time doing a scene in this year’s fashion show and I am bettering my communication skill, teamwork techniques, and planning.  Planning an entire scene takes lots of patience and practice. Although it’s been very stressful, it’s so exciting to be able to gain the hands on experience in my career field that I love so much. I can’t wait to see the how the show turns out!

 

Author: Kourtney N. Shearer

Instagram: @kourtneyshearer

Twitter: @kourtneynicole7

Stop Procrastinating, Start Conquering

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Every student deals with procrastination, but not many people know how to deal with it. Procrastination is like having a devil on your shoulder telling you everything you could do instead of your homework. Don’t worry, I’m here to give you tips to say goodbye to that little evil man on your shoulder!

blog post (credit to waystostudy)

Stop Being a Perfectionist

Being a perfectionist myself, I understand the struggle of always wanting everything to be just right without a single flaw. However that is not always possible, and sometimes being a perfectionist can even hold you back. If you worked hard and did your best there is nothing more you can do. Don’t stay on the same paper or homework assignment correcting and checking it for the 100th time, when your time could be better utilized on something else! No one is perfect, that’s okay, just do your best.

Make Lists

I mentioned this in a previous post of mine, “How to Stay Organized Without Losing Your Mind”, but it really does help in so many different aspects of your life. It’s a method I swear by. In short just have a notebook or to-do list pad dedicated to making lists of everything you want to do within the day. This will work as a motivator constantly reminding you of what you need and want to do in the day, and the idea of being able to check everything off will push you to be more productive. Try it out for yourself, and I bet you will get more done in the day.

The 20-10 Method

This is a great method I learned about through Pinterest ,  (Shameless promo: Check out the GCC Pinterest for tons of inspiration!) The idea behind this method is to have a timer whether it be on your phone, an app you download, or there are even some webpages meant for this method. When you’re doing your work start the timer with 20 minutes on the clock, work for 20 minutes straight without interruption. When the timer goes off give yourself 10 minutes to relax and check your phone. Then go back to 20 minutes of working. Continue the loop until you get all of your tasks done! This is a great way to work instead of trying to do everything in one sitting and getting frustrated and exhausted.

Work When You’re Feeling Productive

This may sound simple but many people don’t do it! Whenever you feel productive, get down to work! Often people say ‘I’ll do my homework at this time’, but when that time rolls around they don’t feel like doing what they planned or they get distracted. So when you feel full of energy, and you’re looking for something to do, why not get some work done.

Do Your Favorites/Least Favorites First

This is a great way to snowball your productivity. Take your homework list and do the assignments you like the most (or in some cases make you the least miserable) and do that first. I would even recommend ranking your tasks from #1 to whatever, and go in that order. Doing your preferred tasks first will get you motivated, and you will be more likely to continue working. But you may prefer to do the least favorite things first, that way what you dislike or maybe your hardest course is out of the way, and the rest of your assignments won’t seem as bad. Either way, just have to figure out what works best for you.

You’ll always have those days where you’d rather do anything other than your responsibilities. Whenever you’re in a slump, apply these tips and let me know if you were more productive and if I helped you out. I love to hear feedback!

“Work hard in silence, let success be your noise.”

-Frank Ocean

-Danielle