Monday, February 14, 2011

Red hearts, Red Velvet and Red Birds


Red Hearts...

A day to celebrate love, joy and happiness in all stages and levels of relationships. With your spouse, your significant other, your friends, family and your children.

Remember decorating your shoe box to take to school in order to collect Valenine's from all your classmates. And then going through them, re-reading and examining them once you got home. Remember the boy (or girl) you had a secret crush on? And how you'd check out his or her signature and message on the Valentine? As if you could see there was really more to the message than a simple "You're Sweet", or "Be Mine". Did you agonize over which Valentine to give which classmate-because you wanted that "special someone" to realize the message behind the message? Ah, those were the days!

Red Velvet...

A sweet way to say Happy Valentine's Day is with Red Velvet Cupcakes. Did you know that this recipe was originally created for Eaton's Department store in Canada back in the 1940's? Other's say that it is attributed to the Waldorf-Astoria hotel in New York. The cake, which is red in color (hence it's name) get's it's color from the combination of the vinegar (acid) when it reacts with the buttermilk. During World War II, foods were being rationed, so bakers used beets and/or beet juice to get the red color. However, the best way to get this cake to a true red color is by making a paste with 2 Tbsp. food coloring and mixing it with the cocoa powder before adding it to the batter. This cake saw a resurgence in popularity in the 1989 with the movie "Steel Magnolias" because in the south, the grooms' cake is often baked in the shape of an armadillo and features the Red Velvet Cake recipe.

Red Birds

It's so nice to take just a few minutes to relax and enjoy life and the little things that bring can bring joy and a smile. I watched a family of cardinals yesterday. The male, with his brillian red feathers, seemed to glow among the drab brown bushes. His female counterpart, was not quite as "showy", but seemed to be the one to demand attention as she held "court" with some sparrows on my porch railing. By taking time today to observe the small details, you can step back from all the turmoil and stress that might be pulling at you and just BREATH and RELAX for a few moments. Try it....

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