Sunday

Recipe for a Perfect Mother’s Day

Opium poppyImage via Wikipediaby Jill S

Ingredient #1: Let mom sleep in. This means being quiet on Mother’s Day morning. No loud TV or loud music before mom decides to get out of bed. No loud complaining of “Mom, I can’t find my shirt, pants [or any other article of clothing which mom is somehow magically supposed to, and surprisingly often does, know where it is].” Surely you can find something semi-clean to wear. :-) Better yet, just give mom some earplugs the night before so she can simply sleep through anything.

Ingredient #2: Let mom have breakfast in bed. In order to make sure this can actually happen, make sure you know where all of the ingredients, bowls, utensils, and other items you’ll need are in the kitchen. Make a list of everything you’ll need and make sure you know where all of it is the night before. I have included an easy breakfast recipe at the end of these “ingredients.” It has just 6 ingredients and all you need is an electric mixer, bowl, and two bread pans. Under no circumstances should you wake mom up in order to find out where something is. Improvise. If it doesn’t turn out, a nicely arranged bowl of cereal that she didn’t have to make is still a nice Mother’s Day breakfast.

Ingredient #3: Let mom have the day off. This means no cooking, cleaning, laundry, or running errands. Chances are pretty good that she does one or more of these things the other 364 days of the year. Let her have Mother’s Day off. If she starts doing one of those things, pleasantly surprise her and offer to do it yourself. And for you kids, I am going to invoke the right of all mothers, she endured X hours of labor in order to bring you into the world, certainly she deserves one day a year off.

Ingredient #4: Tell her “I love you” at least once on Mother’s Day. You know she loves to hear that sappy kind of stuff so indulge her. Telling mom you love her does not make you less cool, less of a rebel, less of a man, or any of the other things you might be worried about. Yes, I realize I have just dated myself but I am hoping that you still get my point. Mom loves you. Admitting that you love her too is okay. You can still be yourself and love your mom.

Ingredient #5: Give mom the gift of your day. Give her your attention for the day. Perhaps even have a meaningful talk about something important going on in your life. Moms love that kind of stuff. Let her choose what the family will do on Mother’s Day. In a world where we never seem to have enough time for each other anymore, let her have you all to herself that day. Who knows, you might even enjoy having that special time with her.

Here’s the easy breakfast recipe I promised.

Poppy Seed Bread

1 package yellow cake mix

1 package instant coconut cream pudding

1 cup hot water

1/2 cup oil

4 eggs

1/4 cup poppy seed


Put all of the above ingredients in a large bowl. Mix all of the ingredients together with an electric mixer on low speed for 4 minutes. Pour the mixture evenly into two bread pans and bake at 350 degrees for about 40 minutes. (A toothpick inserted in the center should come out clean.) Allow the bread to cool for about 30 minutes (it should be just slightly warm to the touch) and then carefully take a table knife and run it around the edge of the pan. Using the table knife or your fingers, gently loosen the bread from the bottom of the pan. Turn the pan upside down over a plate. The bread should slide out. If it doesn’t, gently tap the bottom of the pan to loosen it. Turn the bread right side up, slice it up and you are ready to serve it to mom.

Happy Baking and Happy Mother’s Day!

Jill Seader shares her favorite
breakfast recipes and other baking recipes along with her stories at http://www.YourBakingStory.com. She also invites you to share your own baking recipes and stories. Happy Baking!

Article Source:
Lady Pens

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Happy Mother's Day!

Disney Mothers - I Want A Mom That'll Last Forever

From: 6lionheart6

Thursday

A Frugal and Lovely Mother’s Day

A celebratory Mother's Day cookie cake.Image via Wikipediaby O Quinn

Has the Mother’s Day celebration become too expensive? In the past have you taken mom out to a costly dinner and shower her with expensive gifts? As we come upon Mother’s Day we still want to let mother’s know who special they are but that doesn’t mean you have to break the bank.

Ideas for a frugal Mother’s Day celebration are endless and you hampered only by your own imagination. In our family we hold an extended family celebration. Father’s and children prepare the meal and desserts while also cleaning up after the entire shindig. Gifts are exchanged father and child to mother and mother’s to each other. Gifts are very small and usually end up being good baskets that cost only a few dollars.

The first thing to think about when putting together a Mother’s Day is that this is a wonderful opportunity to make and create. Even though we are a in a buy buy society hand crafted gifts are much more memorable and meaningful.

Here are some ideas.

Make your Mother’s Day Meal from scratch -Taking mom out to dinner can be incredibly costly. Put together your own 5 star meal at home. Roasts are so much easier to prepare now that we have those great oven bags Just follow the directions and pop it in the oven for a never dried out cut of meat. Add some potatoes and a yummy salad. Make some of your menu items before hand such as desserts and appetizers. Bake a cake from scratch rather than buying one. If you’ve never baked a cake before buy a cake mix and a tub of frosting. It’s so easy it should be outlawed. You can also find complete meal recipes and instructions on the internet also. Just do a search under “Mother’s Day Menu”. If you are rather gourmet in your cooking ability search for special recipes in magazines like Cook’s Illustrated and back issues of Victoria Magazine. Get these issues from the library.

Make your Mother’s Day cards from scratch - Scrapbook your card or cards. Be extra frugal and use flower cut outs and sentiments from previous cards in your Mother’s Day card. Do you have a printer and some great ink? You can find tons of printable cards online. Just do a search and check out what you find. You still have time make a day of it with the kids. Pull out all the paper crafts and design an outstanding Mother’s Day card. Cut flowers from ready to toss magazines. Glue them onto card-stock. Make a border out of a scrap piece of lace. Pre-print the words on the front and add you own special sentiment inside.

Make Your Mother’s Day Gifts - What would mean more to mom than a bottle of expensive perfume? Probably a day or two without household worries or cares. A week’s worth of freezer meals. Can you sew? Make mom a fragrant lavender filled neck wrap. Fill it with rice and dried lavender.

Mother’s Day is a very special day but that does not mean it has to be very expensive. Let mom know you care because you took the extra time to make it by hand.

For complete checklists for home and life visit Household Notes and for information on organizing your home visit Homemaking Organized.

Article Source: GreatArticlesforMoms.com
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Monday

Four Homemade Mother's Day Cards to Make

Mother AlwaysImage by scrapbit via Flickrby Rachel Paxton

There is nothing as special or personal as a homemade Mother's Day card. Surprise your friends and family with your handmade creations. Here are some ideas to get you started.

Materials:

Four blank greeting cards (available at craft stores),

scrapbooking paper with floral pattern, coordinating solid piece

of scrapbooking paper, creme or white colored cardstock

(whichever matches other papers best), paper cutter, scissors,

glue stick, computer, printer, sewing machine.



Card #1:

For this card you will need a floral piece of scrapbooking paper, a coordinating piece of solid colored scrapbooking paper, and a piece of white or creme colored cardstock. Cut a piece of the solid colored paper to fit the front of the greeting card and glue it in place. Cut an approximately 2-inch strip of the floral paper and glue on lefthand side of card as a border. Use your sewing machine to stitch* along the righthand side of the floral border and around the outside edge of the card. Cut a large square out of creme colored or white card stock and glue to
the center of the card. Type "Happy Mother's Day" on your computer and print out on white or creme colored cardstock. Cut out the phrase (narrow strip) and glue to the bottom of the
square in the center of the card. Choose a flower from the floral paper and trim to fit in the center of the square on the front of the card. Glue in place.

* Stitching tips: If you have never used your sewing machine to make cards, it is easy! Just sew on the paper like you would on fabric. You might want to reserve a needle just for paper so you
don't dull the needle for your fabric projects. There are two ways you can include stitching in your card making projects. You can either stitch directly on the card, or you can stitch on a
separate piece of paper and then glue that piece to the card
(then the stitching won't show through the card).


Card #2:

This Mother's Day card is quick and easy. Cut a piece of the solid colored scrapbooking paper to fit three-quarters of the front of the card. Carefully tear along the righthand edge of the paper and glue the paper in place. Next cut a piece of floral paper to fit half of the front of the card. Carefully tear along the righthand edge of the paper and glue on top of the solid colored piece of paper. Type "Happy Mother's Day" on your computer and print it on white or cream colored paper. Mat the cut-out phrase first on a piece of the solid colored paper, then glue to front of card. Stitch around the outside of the card if you wish, but it isn't necessary.


Card #3:

This card will open horizontally. Cut three approximately 3-inch strips of paper to fit width of card: two floral and one solid colored. Tear bottom edges of each piece. Beginning at top of card overlap the three pieces with floral paper first and glue in place. Cut a large square from the cream or white colored paper and glue it in the center of the card. Cut a slightly smaller square of solid colored paper and glue in center of cream colored piece. Type "Happy Mother's Day" on your computer. Print on cream or white colored paper, trim, and glue in the center of solid colored square. Stitch around the edge of the card, if you wish.


Card #4:

This card will open horizontally. Tear a rectangle from the solid colored paper and glue near top of card. Type "Happy Mother's Day" on your computer and print on white or creme colored paper. Trim and glue to center of solid colored paper. Tear another piece of solid colored paper (larger than first) to glue across the bottom of the card. Cut a rectangle from floral paper and glue to center of bottom piece of solid colored paper. If you wish you can accent edges of floral rectangle with coordinating eyelets.

Notes: - The terms "card stock" and "paper" are used interchangably here, but it is up to you which kind of paper you use, depending on the look you are trying to achieve - A sewing machine isn't necessary for this project, it is just a nice added touch - You don't have to use your computer for this project, you can handwrite the words if you wish.

Happy Mother's Day!

Rachel Paxton is a freelance writer and mom of four. For scrapbooking, card making, gift-giving ideas, and more family memory-making activities, visit http://www.crafty-moms.com . Photos of finished cards:
http://www.crafty-moms.com/cards/mothers-day-cards.shtml

Article Source: Lady Pens

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Sunday

Breakfast Ideas For Mother's Day

by Susanne Myers

Mother's Day is all about showing Mom how much you appreciate everything she does all year long. Why not start the day of right for her this year by surprising her with breakfast. It's one of the easiest meals to prepare and with a little help from Dad, even young kids can put together some delicious dishes for Mom to make her feel appreciated on this special day.

Keep it simple. You don't have to come up with anything fancy. A bowl of cereal with some fresh fruit cut up in it will do just fine. Of course there are a lot of other simple breakfast dishes you could try like pancakes or waffles. Serve either one of those with some fancy syrup, a little whipped cream and some fresh fruit.

Smoothies are another great simple breakfast item. Blend some vanilla yogurt along with some fresh or frozen fruit and a splash of orange juice. Serve in a fancy glass for a delicious and nutritious breakfast treat.

Of course a cup of coffee is a must. Check with Dad if there's a special blend mom loves and fix it for her. Warm her cup by running warm water in it before pouring the coffee. Don't forget to serve it with sugar and cream on the side. If you want to get fancy, dip a spoon in melted chocolate and let it cool on a piece of wax paper. The chocolate will melt and flavor her coffee when she uses the spoon to stir.

Buy some natural orange juice at the store, or squeeze your own. Pour the juice into a chilled glass and decorate it with a slice of orange.

Now it's time to figure out where you are going to serve this special Mother's Day breakfast. One option is of course to serve it to Mom in bed. Arrange everything on a tray and take it with you when you go to wake her up. Don't forget to bring a few napkins to keep crumbs off the bed.

If it is warm enough outside, you may want to set a table on the porch or in the backyard. Take some time to get everything ready and use a table cloth, plates and pretty flatware. Some fresh flowers in vase are also a nice touch. The same goes of course for the kitchen or dining room table if it is too cold to sit outside in the morning.

Don't forget to take care of the dishes after breakfast. After all, Mom shouldn't have to worry about clean up on Mother's Day.

With just a little bit of thought and effort, you can get Mom off to a great start with a special breakfast for Mother's Day. It's a nice way to show her how much you appreciate what she does for you any day of the year.

Surprise Mom this year with a subscription to the PareningZoo a new online parenting magazine and community site. She'll love the parenting tips, yummy recipes and fun crafts and activities. There's even a “Time For Mom” Section with book and movie reviews, pampering spa recipes and more. Join today at http://www.ParentingZoo.com

Article Source:
GreatArticlesforMoms.com

Saturday

Make Mother's Day Easy for You

A celebratory Mother's Day cookie cake.Image via Wikipediaby Mila Sidman & Alice Seba

Mother’s Day is a time for moms to sit back, relax, and enjoy a special day, courtesy of the kids. But some mothers have trouble doing that. They have their own moms to buy gifts for and pamper, and the kids can’t take care of themselves, and dinner won’t cook itself. Does this sound familiar? Here are some ways that you can make the most of Mother’s Day and enjoy it to the fullest.

Do your Mother’s Day shopping early to avoid last-minute stress. Put some thought into her gift and get her something that she can truly enjoy. If you have the time, a hand-made scrapbook is a particularly heartwarming gift. If you’re a busy lady, taking the time to cook Mom her favorite meal would be a thoughtful gesture. Flowers are also a beautiful way to show your mom how much you care.

Don’t forget about Grandma and Mother-in-Law! They deserve something special on this day, too. If you’re having trouble with gift ideas, get them some great-smelling bath products or foot the bill for a manicure or a day at the spa. Moms don’t get pampered nearly as often as they should, and when they do it is something to truly appreciate.

You could also take any of the special moms in your life out to eat at their favorite restaurants. But make sure that your family doesn’t have something similar planned at the same time. Mention it to them ahead of time, and if they give hints that they’ve got something up their sleeve, rethink your plans. If there is conflict, you could do lunch instead of dinner, or even do it the night before. It’s important to make Mom, Grandma, and Mother-in-Law feel special, but your kids want the opportunity to do something for you, too.

If you have small children, be sure to find special ways to include them in your day. They may be too young to understand Mother’s Day yet, but they will know that something special is in the air and want to be a part of it. You could help them do some age-appropriate crafts, or simply spend some special time with them one-on-one. If the weather is nice, take them for a stroll in the park or pick flowers with them. Not only will you be making sure that the little ones are included, you will be making special memories with them. And what could be more appropriate for Mother’s Day?

If you have older children, it never hurts to drop a hint or two about what would make your day the best Mother’s Day ever. You could tell them how much you love that certain dish they cook, or that watching the younger kids while you relax would be a welcome break. You are a mom, and you deserve a great day just like your mom does. If you put ideas out there, you just might be pleasantly surprised.

Moms deserve at least one special day a year to rest and truly enjoy themselves. Be sure to honor your mom and the other special moms in your life, but don’t forget to enjoy the day yourself.

Holiday Ideas for Moms is your source for less-stress and more fun year-round. Drop by for more holiday tips and Mother’s Day Ideas for the whole family.

Article Source:
GreatArticlesforMoms.com


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History of Mother's Day

Marble statuette of Cybele wearing the polos on her head, from Nicaea in Bithynia, - (Istanbul Archaeology Museum)Image via Wikipediaby Mom2Mom

Did you know that Mother’s Day has actually been around since the Ancient Greek and Roman Empires? The Greeks celebrated the holiday in honour of Rhea, the God of motherhood, while the ancient Romans celebrated a similar holiday in honour of Cybele, a mother goddess. Cybele’s festivities took place from March 22-25.

While today’s Moms aren’t quite as lucky as Cybele in having 3 days set aside, just for them, it is nice to know that the practice dates back so long ago.

In reality, the Mother’s Day that we have come to know and practice actually has its closest roots in Merry Old England where it was known as Mothering Sunday. Taking place on the fourth Sunday during Lent, it began as a day when servants and apprentices were allowed to return home for the day to visit their mothers. They often brought with them a gift, sometimes called a Mothering Cake, which consisted of fruitcake or a fruit-filled pastry. By the time of the 19th Century, the holiday had all but fizzled out.

So what revived it? Well, historians seem to have a few explanations… One story states that after World War II, American serviceman brought the custom back home to share with their families, where it ultimately became known and celebrated as Mother’s Day. How nice to know that it was men who recognized the need for a special time to honour Moms.

Apparently, it was from that point on that the commercialization of Mother’s Day actually began. Big box greeting card companies, department stores and restaurants began to jump on the bandwagon, using it as an occasion to drum up business during the month of May.

There is also another story of a young Philadelphia woman named Anna Jarvis, whom many claim to be the official founder of Mother’s Day. It is said that in 1905, Miss Jarvis swore at her mother’s gravesite in 1905 that she would dedicate her life to her mother and establish a Mother’s Day to honour mothers, both living and dead.

In 1907, she passed out 500 white carnations at her mother's place of worship, St. Andrew's Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton, West Virginia. And on May 10th, 1908, St. Andrew’s was the first church to respond to her request for a Sunday service, honouring Mothers.

Nowadays, the holiday is celebrated on the second Sunday in May, in over 40 countries, including the United States, Canada, Denmark, Finland, Italy, Turkey, Australia and Belgium. Although we may never know the true origins and founder(s) of Mother’s Day, it still remains a special time to acknowledge and thank Moms everywhere for the lifelong love, support, and the single greatest gift that they have given us – Life.

Happy Mother’s Day!

Mom2Mom Magazine,
http://www.mom2momlounge.com is an online magazine written by moms, for moms. Find mom-relevant issues, insights, product reviews, fun ideas, fashion and beauty, family travel, health, recipes, humor and more. Each issue is filled with realistic, quick and easy reads that matter to Moms.

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Friday

10 Patriotic Quotes to Celebrate Cinco De Mayo

Author: Noel Jameson

You read it right -- these ten patriotic quotes are to celebrate Cinco De Mayo, an often misunderstood holiday. Many Americans do not understand the significance of the holiday. Many believe it is strictly a Mexican affair. I'm here to tell you that Cinco De Mayo should be celebrated by Americans too!

After all, the celebration of the holiday has to do with Mexico defeating the French, which prevented Napoleon (who hated the United States) from supplying the confederate rebels for another year. With that in mind, here are ten patriotic quotes celebrating Cinco De Mayo and democracy in general!

1. "Cinco de Mayo has come to represent a celebration of the contributions that Mexican Americans and all Hispanics have made to America." ~ Joe Baca

2. "If liberty and equality, as is thought by some, are chiefly to be found in democracy, they will be best attained when all persons alike share in the government to the utmost." ~ Aristotle

3. "People often say that, in a democracy, decisions are made by a majority of the people. Of course, that is not true. Decisions are made by a majority of those who make themselves heard and who vote - a very different thing." ~ Walter H. Judd

4. "Democracy is the government of the people, by the people, for the people." ~ Abraham Lincoln

5. "Freedom is when the people can speak, democracy is when the government listens." ~ Alastair Farrugia

6. "I like to see a man proud of the place in which he lives. I like to see a man live so that his place will be proud of him." ~ Abraham Lincoln


7. "Honor to the soldier, and Sailor everywhere, who bravely bears his country's cause. Honor also to the citizen who cares for his brother in the field, and serves, as he best can, the same cause." ~ Abraham Lincoln

8. "The history of every country begins in the heart of a man or woman." ~ Willa Cather

9. "True patriotism hates injustice in its own land more than anywhere else." ~ Clarence Darrow

10. "There is something magnificent in having a country to love." ~James Russell Lowell

So on the fifth of May, when you see the flags and the celebration of Cinco de Mayo, understand that it is not just Mexico that is being celebrated. It is victory, democracy and a love of one's heritage. Why not invite friends over for a Cinco De Mayo party and educate them as well?

About the author: For more patriotic quotes, check out the popular patriotic quotes section of Famous-Quotes-And-Quotations.com, a website that specializes in 'Top 10' lists of quotations in dozens of categories. http://www.famous-quotes-and-quotations.com/patriotic-quotes.html

Cinco de Mayo History Celebration

Author: Mrs. Party... Gail Leino

Bring the southwestern feeling to your home by having a fiesta for Cinco de Mayo. Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican holiday. It has been celebrated since 1862 when the smaller less modern army of Mexico defeated the larger more powerful French army at the Battle of Puebla.

Friends and family members will love to get together to celebrate this festive holiday. Write on the invitation for guests to break out their Mexican fatigues. Sombreros, serapes, ponchos and bandannas are the perfect party gear for your guests to wear.

Offer an array of authentic Mexican dishes to appease the appetites of all who come to your fiesta. Enchiladas, tacos, salsa, guacamole, and queso dip are a few of the tasty dishes you might consider. Don't forget to accompany these delightful entrees with a few traditional Mexican beverages.

Use stunning colored lights in a variety of shapes including cactus and red chili peppers for your Cinco de Mayo fiesta. No fiesta ceiling would be complete without a few paper lanterns in an array of sparkling and traditional colors. Use cutouts of cactus or howling coyote silhouettes for wall decorations.

For younger guests to be able to relish in the traditions of a Cinco de Mayo celebration, incorporate a piñata into the festivities. Use a traditional seven pointed star shape or the shape of the horse piñata. Children of all ages will be excited in taking a swing at this popular party game in hopes that they would be the one to spill the treasures that are carefully contained inside.

With all of your careful planning and a few of your great ideas brought to life, your Cinco de Mayo fiesta is sure to be a party that will be remembered and appreciated for many years to come."

About the author: Mrs. Party... Gail Leino is the internet's leading authority for the best party supplies with clever themes and fun facts for character birthdays, holidays and theme parties. Plus, ideas for personalized and birthday party favors to make your event unforgettable.

Great Recipes For Your Cinco de Mayo Party--

Cheddar ChipotleDip, Mole Poblano, Golden Margarita

Author: Sandee Lembke

In Mexico, Cinco de Mayo (May 5th) is primarily a regional holiday celebrated in the state of Puebla. It has major significance in that part of the country because it commemorates an initial victory of Mexican forces led by General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguín over French forces in the Battle of Puebla on May 6, 1862.

There is a common misconception that Cinco de Mayo is Mexico's Independence Day when in fact September 16th is the most important national patriotic holiday in Mexico. In the early hours of September 16, 1810, father Hidalgo, accompanied by several conspirators (Iganacio Allende, Doña Josefa Ortiz de Domínguez to name a few), rang the bell at his church calling on everyone to fight for liberty. This was the beginning of the Mexican Independence War, which lasted 10 years.

In the United States, Cinco de Mayo has taken on meaning beyond that in Puebla, Mexico. Regardless of their own ethnic descent, Americans celebrate St. Patrick's Day and Oktoberfest (among other holidays) to honor those of Irish and German descent. Similiarly, Cinco de Mayo is celebrated to honor the culture and experience of those of Mexican descent.

Especially in cities with large populations of those of Mexican ancestry, such as Los Angeles, San Fransico and San Antonio, Cinco de Mayo is grandly celebrated. This is the perfect occasion for planning a home theme party so I thought I would help you get started by sharing a few of my favorite Cinco de Mayo recipes.

Appetizer--Warm Chipotle Cheddar Dip

2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese
1 cup shredded Monterey Jack or Mozzarella cheese
1/2 cup mayonnaise
1-8 oz. can whole kernel corn, drained (3/4 cup)
1-4 oz. can chopped green chili peppers, drained
2 teaspoons finely chopped canned chipotle chili peppers in adobo sauce (or to taste)
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1 medium tomato, seeded and chopped (3/4 cup)
1/4 cup sliced green onion
2 tablespoons snipped fresh cilantro
Vegetables, crackers or chips

I found this dip when I was on a low carb diet and was looking for a party appetizer that would work well with vegetables. Something with a robust flavor that would perk up the veggies. Well this one definitely fit the bill. This appetizer has become a favorite among my friends. It's served multiple times throughout the year at various parties that I either host or attend.

You can make it as smokey and spicy as you want by adjusting the amount of chipotle peppers (smoked jalepenos) but watch out. You can easily go from mildly spicy to blow-your-face-off hot by adding too much!

Steps to Make Cheddar Chipotle Dip

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Stir together cheeses, mayonnaise, corn, green chili peppers, chipotle chili peppers and garlic powder in a large mixing bowl. Spread mixture into a 1 quart, covered dish.

Bake for 30 minutes until bubbly. Top with tomato, green onion and cilantro. I like to make a pattern out of the toppings so I put the tomatoes all in the middle, make a ring around them with the green onion then sprinkle the cilantro over all. Serve with vegetables, like red, green and yellow peppers. Tostido and Frito Scoops work well too.


Main Course--Chicken with Chocolate Sauce (Mole Poblano)

4 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves garlic, minced
6 chicken breast halves, skinless and boneless
1 onion, chopped
1 green pepper, chopped
3 slices canned pimento, chopped
2 tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
2 tablespoons chili powder (or to taste)
2-1/2 cups chicken broth
1/4 cup slivered almonds
1/4 cup raisins
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1 teaspoon sugar
Grated rind of 1 orange
2 squares bitter chocolate, chopped
1/4 cup light rum (optional)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a casserole, heat oil and cook garlic for a few minutes to flavor the oil. Add chicken just to brown (it will finish cooking in the oven) and then remove it from the pan. In the remaining fat, cook onion, green pepper, pimento and tomato over gentle heat for 10 minutes. Add chili powder, blending well. Add broth, almonds, raisins, seasonings and rind. Simmer, covered, for 30 minutes then add the chocolate and stir until melted. Add chicken back in and spoon sauce on top. Cover and bake for 1 hour or until chicken is tender.

Warm rum, ignite it and pour over contents of casserole. Allow to stand for a few minutes until flame is extinguished and then serve on a large platter. Serves 6.


Cocktail--Golden Margarita, Vero Beach Style

1-1/2 oz. Gold Tequila
1/2 oz. lime juice
3 oz sour mix
1/2 oz. Grand Marnier (can use Cointreau or Triple Sec)
Dash of orange juice
Lime wedge for garnish
Salt for rimming glass (optional)

Several years ago, my husband and I were sitting at a cute little beachfront bar in Vero Beach, Florida. The bartender asked us for our order and I wanted to try something new. He told us that he makes a "mean margarita." I told him that my experience with margaritas up to that point was not very good. Every time I tried one, they were either so tart that my face would pucker up or the sour mix was so acidy that it burned going down. He claimed that his "Golden Margarita" would be different. He was right and I have loved them ever since.

To make a Golden Margarita, Vero Beach style:

Dip the rim of a margarita glass in water then salt. In a shaker, combine tequila, lime juice and sour mix with ice cubes. Shake well. Pour contents, with ice, into the glass. Gently pour the Grand Marnier and then the orange juice on top of the tequila mixture. Garnish with the lime wedge.

When you take a sip of this drink, first you get the sweet taste of the orange liqueur and juice then you get the tartness of the lime and sour mix. The combination makes a perfectly smooth
Margarita.

Now that you know the meaning of Cinco de Mayo and have a bunch of great party recipes, start planning your party now. May 5th will be here before you know it.

About the author: Sandee Lembke from Theme Party Queen.com (http://www.theme-party-queen.com/ ) invites you to visit her site for more great theme party ideas and recipes.

Cinco de Mayo For Kids

By Barbara Feldman

Cinco de Mayo is Spanish for the fifth of May. The fifth of May is a significant day for Mexicans, being the anniversary of the Battle of Puebla, a battle between Mexican and French forces which has become symbolic of the Mexican spirit and determination to thwart foreign aggression.

The battle of Puebla took place in 1862. Leading up to this event, in 1861, Mexico declared a temporary moratorium, or delay, on their foreign debt. In response to this, the English, Spanish and French all invaded Mexico. After negotiations, the English and Spanish left by 1862, but the French remained.

The French were trying to establish a monarchy and also had designs to curb United States' power in North America.

On their way to the Mexican capital, the French forces needed to pass through the town of Puebla. Although they were heavily outnumbered, it was here that the Mexicans, led by General Ignacio Zaragoza, managed to defeat the French forces.

Although the battle of Puebla was a success for Mexican freedom, the French returned a year later and were successful in taking over Mexico City. Ferdinand Maximilian of Austria's Hapsburg House was selected by Napoleon III as Emperor of Mexico and for three years ruled from the Chapultepec Palace in Mexico City, which was built by the Spanish.

The French had begun to overextend themselves in Mexico as they spread their control of the region. Soon the American Civil War was over and the United States informed the French of their Monroe doctrine which stated they would treat any colonial disputes within the Americas as hostile towards the United States and would step in. This caused the Napoleon III to withdraw troops from Mexico. Eventually Maximilian was captured and executed in June, 1867.

It took five years to drive the French out of Mexico. However the Battle of Puebla, being the beginning of the resistance against the French, is seen as symbolising the determination of the Mexican people.

Cinco de Mayo is celebrated throughout Mexico and the US Southwest, but especially in Puebla, where soldiers, students, mariachi bands and dancers parade on the main street. The celebrations culminate in a party at the “zocalo,” or main plaza. In some cities, re-enactments of the battle of Puebla take place.

Some US states celebrate the day also, especially in the Southwestern states and areas with a large Hispanic population. In particular Goliad, Texas holds a major celebration of Cinco de Mayo, as it is the birthplace of General Ingnacio Zaragoza.

For more on Cinco de Mayo, with links to recommended sites, visit Cinco de Mayo at "Surfing the Net with Kids." http://www.surfnetkids.com/cinco_de_mayo.htm

Also from syndicated columnist Barbara Feldman: kids coloring pages and clean kids jokes.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Barbara_Feldman
http://EzineArticles.com/?Cinco-de-Mayo-For-Kids&id=552252

The Roots of the Cinco de Mayo Holiday

By Richard Monk

Cinco de Mayo is a Mexican holiday celebrated each and every year. Known as El Cinco de Mayo, the holiday is based on an event, not the independence of the country.

Every country celebrates a unique day representing a significant event in its past. This is often the day when the country either gained independence from an imperial force or came together in its present form. For instance, the United States celebrates Independence Day on July 4th each year to commemorate the day independence from the British occurred. Many people assume Cinco de Mayo refers to a similar event. It does not.

The independence day for Mexico is celebrated every year in September. As the name suggests, Cinco de Mayo is celebrated on May 5th each year. Given the popularity of the holiday, one must wonder what the exact reason for Cinco de Mayo.

Cinco de Mayo is a celebration of a military victory. The holiday is a memorial to the defeat of the French army in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Specifically, the battle was a sign of the coming of age of Mexico, primarily because of the circumstances surrounding it.

In the mid-1800s, the French were a superior military force. This is the period of Napoleon, a time when France dominated much of the known world. In Mexico, the military process of the people was in great doubt. The Battle of Puebla would change this forever and provide a huge boost to a country.

The battle commemorated by Cinco de Mayo was one of those historic events where the underdog comes out on top. In this case, a Mexican force of 4,000 men were led into battle by a 33 year old general by the name of Ignacio Zaragoza. In turn, the French force consisted of 6,000 crack troops from Napoleon’s army, although Napoleon did not lead them. As you can guess, the French were defeated after only four hours. This, of course, resulted in a massive boost to national pride in Mexico.

Cinco de Mayo is a momentous event in the culture of Mexico. Just keep in mind that it is not a celebration of independence day.

Richard Monk is with FactsMonk.com - a site with facts about everything. Visit us to read more about Mexico.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Richard_Monk
http://EzineArticles.com/?The-Roots-of-the-Cinco-de-Mayo-Holiday&id=256954

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