Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Count Down to Thanksgiving: Stress Reliever Tips

As you get ready for the big day, get a jump start by making some items ahead of time.  

Prepare some of your dishes in advance.  In case you are wondering what you can do, here are a few ideas:
  • Brine and season your turkey the day before.  You can also cook your turkey the evening/night before.  The trick, stick your pre-cooked turkey in the oven 45mins - 1 hour before serving (to maintain moisture, set aside some turkey juice or chicken broth, heat and pour over turkey slices after carving)
  • If making stuffed lamb chops, you can prepare and stuff and stick it in the oven the next day
  • Ham is usually not a hassle if you purchase pre-cooked ham
  • Other meats like roast duck, roast chicken, etc., can be prepared the night prior - no worries
  • One of my favorite items is mac & cheese casserole as it can be made 1 week in advance and put in the freezer until ready to be cooked.  If you missed doing that for Thanksgiving, keep that in mind for Christmas
  • The corny cornbread, bread pudding, pumpkin bread are some of those great items that can be made ahead of time or you can purchase ready-made bread to save on time
  • There isn't much to say here. As I mentioned above, purchasing pre-made items can save drastically on time. Keep in mind that even if you purchase pre-made food, you can be creative and put your spin on it by your own home made toppings, etc. That said, if however, you're like me and take pleasure in slapping down on dough and making cookies and pies and cakes, then go ahead and have fun a day or two before the holidays
  • If you want to save on time but you do want to bake something, I suggest making something easy like the Apple Dump Cake.  All you have to do is pour all the ingredients in a baking dish, no mixing, no measuring, throw it in the oven and you are done.  I will post the recipe in a separate post
Be Blessed and Have a Wonderful Thanksgiving and Safe Holidays
~Arama Christiana
IG: @aramaproducts

4 Simple Tips to Having a Stress-free Thanksgiving Holiday

Tips and Tricks for a Stress-Free Holiday so you can relax and enjoy the day!
As wonderful and welcomed as the holidays are, we end up too stressed just from the mere preparations for the holiday; making lists, grocery shopping, cleaning house, and getting ready.  If you are one of those people, you know too well that all the anxiety and pressure does is rob you off the joy of the holidays and the pleasure of spending time with loved ones. 

I used to be one of those folks. Run myself ragged, stay up late, wake up early, twirl like a squirrel in the kitchen, chase my tail, all in the name of making sure my family and guests have a wonderful time. That's all well and good, and that's the goal, but when it's all over, I realise that I was so busy that I didn't get the chance to really sit down and enjoy the company of my guests. I know it's a satisfying feeling to see everyone enjoying themselves and having a good time but I still want to have a sit down and catch up on what's happening in the lives of my family and loved ones.

Below are Tips and Tricks, I now use for a Stress-Free Holiday so I can relax and enjoy the day. 

  1. Write down your menu and stick with it. (simple, right?) You need to nail down what you intend to serve before you start your preparations. Write it down and stick with it. Find out if there are any caveats you need to keep in mind like guest with allergies, restrictive diets, etc. 
  2. Make a second list of all the ingredients you will need.  Check them against what you have in your cupboards.  Check the amount of ingredients you need in total for those recipes that call for the same items such as eggs, milk, etc.  Again, this is where tip #1 above comes in. Make your list and stick to it.  Don't decide at the last minute to add something and make it, and then find out you don't have enough ingredients for the main things on your list and end up having to make several trips to the store.
  3. Identify those items that you can cook 2-3 days ahead of time. What?  I thought you're supposed to wake up early, Thanksgiving morning and work hard in the kitchen?  Absolutely not.  A lot of sides and desserts can be made ahead of time.  Even your turkey can be brined and cooked the night before.
  4. Delegate! Delegate! Delegate!  I can't stress this enough.  If you have a large family and need to cook for an army, delegate items to family members.  Share your menu and your recipes, and ensure your volunteers know what they are responsible for and the items/ingredients & amount they need.  
Remember the Pilgrims made their dishes and the Indians made their dishes, and then they all came together and gave thanks. 
My family has made our own Thanksgiving and Christmas tradition which we have followed for quite a few years.  We cook the day before Thanksgiving and Christmas Eve.  When we wake up on Thanksgiving, all we do is set food in the warmers, eat, and then graze all day.  That has allowed us to do nothing but rest over the holidays and enjoy each other's company.

Be Blessed and have a Wonderful Thanksgiving
~Arama Christiana
IG: @aramaproducts

Sunday, August 20, 2017

A home for Daddy and Daughter

Helping a Veteran Build A Home
One of my passions is helping our #veterans. Especially since both my husband and I have family members who have #served years in the #military, including our son who has been in active service six years now.  
I'm thankful for each and every one of them who have gone above and beyond the call of duty, left the comforts of home to fight to keep us safe here in the great USA.
Kindly click the link below to read Martin's story, and then join me in helping Martin build a home for him and his daughter, Zoey. 

Martin is a hard working father, who loves and cares for his daughter very much. Remember, it takes a village to raise a child. Click on the link below and help #support him in building a home for his princess, Zoey. Lets show him we appreciate his #service to our country. Lets stand by our #veterans.

Click here to go to their Go Fund Me Page and donate today

Be Blessed,
~Arama Christiana
IG: @aramaproducts

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Casting Call

Casting for the following roles for an upcoming 
movie in the North Carolina area. 

Seeking talents for the following roles:

Pop Wooten - 55-60 year-old light-skinned black male - tall
Nan Wooten - 55-60 year-old black female
Vivian Chadworth 55-60 year-old white female
Livie Chadworth - 30-55 year-old white female
Chadworth boys 10-12 year old white boys
Police Chief- 50-65 year-old any ethnicity
Lawyer Haskell - 40-55 year-old any ethnicity
Dr. Leonard - 45-60 year old male - any ethnicity
Marian - 30-45 year-old white female
Little Serita - 8 - 10 year old black female 
Little Jerome - 8-10 year-old black male
Little Liam 8-10 year old bi-racial or Spanish male 
Little Michael 8-10 year old white male 
Young Robert Chadworth - 25-35 year old white male
Paramedics - any age, any ethnicity
Boy 1 - 16-22 year-old male any ethnicity

For consideration send your headshot, resume, and  
taped audition of monologue of your choice to the
#casting director at snatchedcasting@gmail.com

Saturday, August 20, 2016

Coming Soon! Idalia's Secret

Absurd, is what Enrique Mariano thought of his grandmother's will.  Why did his Abuela work so hard only to leave their family home to the rich, young heiress, Idalia von Droden? Enrique does not need charity, especially not from Idalia.  All he wants is to pay his Abuela's debt and reclaim their home. He has made it clear he wants nothing to do with Idalia. He had buried her somewhere in his past memories. He had guarded his heart well where she was concerned. Why was Idalia now pushing her way into their lives?  

Idalia's world is suddenly shattered when she discovers she was switched at birth with Enrique.  Given the chance, would she right the wrong or continue her life as she knows it?  There is no easy way to solve the mess in which she suddenly finds herself.  She would first have to learn how to be a Latina if she must return to her real family and Enrique to his.

Her curiosity about her Spanish heritage raises a lot of questions by her father, her fiancĂ© and her real (Latino) family, especially her father’s handsome but unapproachable son, Enrique. 

When her father lost his wife and twin boys in a plane accident years ago, he made Idalia the center of his life, catering to her every whim.  Now her Latino craze may cost both of them their lives.  Would she let her father suffer the loss of a son he never knew?  How does she tell the irascible Enrique the atrocious crime committed by the grandmother he so adored?  

Idalia must find a way to bring father and son together on some common grounds--she must be the glue that brings both her worlds together without becoming unraveled herself.  

More information coming.
Stay tuned for more on this #spanglish #romancenovel, coming in September, 2016.

Stay Blessed,
~Arama Christiana