Happy Chinese New Year!

February 10, 2013 Leave a comment

I’ve been gone for a minute so hope everyone is doing great! Here are some dining options in Washington, DC to celebrate the new year.

http://dc.about.com/od/holidaydining/a/Chinese-New-Year-Dining-Specials.htm

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Test Your ‘World AIDS Day’ IQ

November 30, 2012 1 comment

December 1st is World AIDS Day.  This annual observance focuses on the challenges of living with HIV and ways to support those impacted by the disease.   Use this opportunity to learn the facts and share your knowledge with others.

Below is a quiz I found online to test what you know about HIV.  I scored 90% when I took it.  I encourage you to test yourself and use this day to reflect, learn about prevention and focus on staying healthy.

http://www.bet.com/news/health/quizzes/world-aids-2012-quiz.html

Yours by grace,

BRG

Beauty Upgrade with YouTube

November 27, 2012 Leave a comment

While looking for a special updo hairstyle I discovered Vaughn Monroe on YouTube.  Vaughn’s channel is Ms. Vaughn TV.  She has natural hair like moi and shows steps for creating glamourous & beautiful styles.  I subscribed and have become a huge fan.

HAIR: Twisted Updo

She shows make-up, fashion and gives skin care advice.  Through her I’ve found some great looks and helpful techniques.  She’s pushed me to experiment in ways I usually wouldn’t.   The results have been creative and fun  – a nice change of pace.

MAKEUP: Doll Face

Check her out when you get a chance.  She and her sister Meechy Monroe  also recently launched an online shop with reasonable, stylish fashion and beauty finds. It’s called The Style Queue.  These ladies provide great information and tips. The sites are great for style and beauty inspiration.

Enjoy!!

BRG

Don’t Vote – We’ll Pay You $711

I read an interesting piece in the NY Times by Yale history professor David W. Blight.  It was published on September 6, 2012. The title is “Voter Suppression, Then and Now.” In it he discusses Fredrick Douglass and how Douglass committed “voter fraud” when casting his ballot as a fugitive slave in 1840.  It proposes that Republicans use Super Pac money to offer $711 vouchers to the people they want to disenfranchise.  $711 is approximately what a group of English antislavery supporters paid for Douglass to gain emancipation in 1846.  Blight posits that in exchange for their votes millions of Americans would be given a choice – essentially paid to stay out of the electoral process.

Sharing this as food for thought as the 2012 election season comes to a close.  Did the Supreme Court go too far with Citizens United? What can we do to prevent voter suppression? Would you take money for your vote?

If you have real questions about voting call the National Voter Empowerment Hotline:    1-866-MyVote1 (1-866-698-6831)

BRG

Three Resources for Your Money Life

Over the years I’ve developed an expertise in money matters and have helped many relatives and friends.  I was a licensed financial advisor in my past life so I get lots of questions and I know how to find the answers.    In this post  I’m sharing three resources for those looking to learn more about money.

  • Suze Orman’s “The Money Book for the Young, Fabulous & Broke” has information on budgeting, saving and investing.  Written in 2005 it is still relevant and teaches the fundamentals for young adults. I like to give it as a gift for recent grads and those entering the work world.

Suze Orman’s Money Book

  • Laura Adams hosts the podcast “Money Girl.”  I love her advice and tips for money management. Easy going style in a brief, clear format.  Helpful for quick tips on money matters.

Money Girl Podcast

  • I’m  a fan of the blog “Get Rich Slowly” because it focuses on attaining wealth at a realistic pace.  They cover retirement, budgeting, investing and personal finance.  They post on decision making and how to educate yourself about money.  I follow them on Twitter and they sometimes host discussions with contributors on their timeline.

Get Rich Slowly

Use these resources to  educate yourself about the financial markets and develop your own plan for money management.  It can be a steep learning curve, but well worth it in the long term.

Best of luck!!

BRG

Pro Dating Tips

October 11, 2012 1 comment

This summer I made a commitment to get out and date more.  I was spending a lot of time working and not enough making love connections.  Professionals in the City held a workshop for women on meeting men and I went.  The two guys who taught were great.  They pushed us to think about what we want in relationships and what we want in a partner.  I was encouraged to do one of my favorite things – make a list!  So this blog is pushing all the single ladies out there to do exactly what I did, and continue to do when the mood hits me.  Refine what you want.  Be specific, think big!!  They pushed us to write out our top 3 Must Haves, 3 Would Be Nice and 3 Deal Breakers.  That wasn’t easy for me because I tend to let the guys pick me.  I rarely think about what I would prefer.  Unfortunately that’s why I’ve dated some guys who were not the quality I deserve, but they got me because they were persistent.  Now there’s nothing wrong with giving guys you’re not attracted to initially a chance, but those dudes should be exceptions, not rules. I realize that I need more standards, clarity about my preferences.  I have to say it’s been worth taking the time to reflect on my dating patterns and think about what I prefer.  I’m finding that since I’ve written it – that’s what has come my way.  I don’t usually write about relationships, but my endeavor has been successful so I’m excited to share!!  Keep an open mind as you have your own dating experiences.  What are you all doing to make the love connections?  Any good tips that work? Think about what you want and work on that list of 3s!!! 

BRG

Categories: Uncategorized

Cake Cake Cake Cake!!

Hope everyone is enjoying the new season. To kick off fall I’m adding to my baking repertoire. One of my favorite sweets is pound cake so that’s my focus through the end of the year. I baked Chef Art Smith’s lemon-sour cream version and it got good reviews. It was a beautiful cake and I look forward to making it again soon. I didn’t quite get the lemon syrup right – too tired and distracted from a busy day – but I will try it again. So instead of the lemon syrup I covered it with a lemon glaze courtesy of Ms. Martha Stewart’s web site.

 


The adventure begins with having the right tools. Wilton makes quality baking pans so I set out to find mine at A.C. Moore. After a round of discussion with favorite-college-roomie Emily I printed the online coupon (50% off), headed to A.C. Moore and scored my first bundt pan.

If you try this recipe make sure you take your time preparing the pan. Those grooves need butter and flour to keep the cake from sticking. I used the wrappers from the sticks of butter after I put them in the large bowl. You can have that little technique tip for free.

First Pound Cake

The cake smelled delicious and I was transported to childhood. My grandma Frances used to bake for us and we weren’t allowed to come in the kitchen for fear of making the cake fall. So I was in my apartment tipping around slowly and hoping for the best.
I had a touch of anxiety waiting for the cake to cool. Would my cake make the cut? Should I have used Baker’s Joy?

The result was beautiful and tasted good too!!

BRG

Categories: Home Cooking