Dad – The Unsung Hero. Photo by princedd.
If we remember our mothers for their loving, quiet influence, then our fathers must stand as unsung heroes. Too often relegated to practical, financial, logistical and practical roles, we could easily lose sight of their contributions, sacrifices and influences. It’s our mothers who often bask in the recognition of a successfully brought up child, but somewhere—steadfast, proud, courageous, but out of the limelight—stand our fathers. On Father’s Day, we honor their sacrifices and commitment.
Have you ever wondered how Father’s Day originated? History.com provides some fascinating facts and details. The holiday’s first celebration took place in West Virginia in 1908, and was a one-time event to commemorate fathers who had been lost in a mine explosion.
Sonora Smart Dodd
In 1909, Sonora Smart Dodd, raised by a widower, actively campaigned for a Father’s Day in her hometown of Spokane, Washington. Her campaign produced results any father would admire: In 1910, Washington State held its first state Father’s Day. But the holiday only spread slowly through the following decades—a delay often caused by fathers themselves. Men scoffed at the sentimentality and attempts to commercialize fatherhood, leading to gifts ironically often paid for by the fathers. Meantime, Mrs. Dodd had established a tradition of wearing a white rose to honor a deceased father and a red rose for a father still living.
In 1916, President Woodrow Wilson “honored the day by using telegraph signals to unfurl a flag in Spokane when he pressed a button in Washington, D.C.” Eight years later, President Calvin Coolidge encouraged states to observe Father’s Day, purportedly calling it “the occasion to establish more intimate relations between fathers and their children and also press upon fathers the full measure of their obligations.” June 19th slowly became a recognized and celebrated holiday, and in 1972, President Richard Nixon established the third Sunday in June as a national Father’s Day—trailing the creation of Mother’s Day by 58 years.
If you need a little inspiration, you might enjoy these tips from the article, “Give Him a Father’s Day He’ll Never Forget.” You could also make Dad a batch of homemade BBQ sauce or take him on a perfect picnic.
How will you be celebrating with the fathers in your life? I always love hearing your thoughts and ideas.
Happy Father’s Day,
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Posted in Children, Family, Holiday Gifts, Holidays, Personal Touches, Recipes, tagged barbecue, barbeque, BBQ, cook-out, Father's Day, grilling on May 26, 2011 |
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© Andrea Berger - Fotolia.com
I’m constantly racking my brain for creative, cost-effective gifts to give. With Father’s Day quickly approaching, I wanted to come up with something different and useful that my girls could help me create. We have enough artwork to cover a few miles of the great wall; we have enough painted mugs, bowls and plates to keep Tavern on the Green up and running and enough painted pots, patio pavers and bird feeders to remain to eyesore of the neighborhood. Not that I don’t adore and cherish each an every one of these handmade projects, but one can only have so many…
While making a list of my husband’s favorite pastimes, I kept coming back to how much we enjoy spending our evenings outside. Grilling is a big part of that. So this year, we are going to make him three different types of homemade barbeque sauce. It’s a fun activity that the kids can help with, and the gift is practical because we know he’ll use and enjoy it. Plus, it won’t clutter the front porch or the front of the refrigerator!
I’ve listed a few of my favorite BBQ sauce recipes below, each with its own distinctive flavor and style. You might enjoy trying one style you’re familiar with, and one that’s new to you. You can find a variety of bottle styles and sizes at many different retailers such as The Container Store.
Have the kids decorate a different label (a simple piece of paper that can be glued onto the bottle). Finally, secure the bottles in a nice box among some hickory wood chips (found at most grocery stores). The wood chips are a great packing material as well as grill starter. If you don’t have the time or desire to make your own BBQ sauce, purchase a favorite store brand, soak off the label and affix your own for the same effect.
Here are some of my preferred BBQ sauce recipes, all from the wonderful site AllRecipes.com:
Big Al’s K.C. Bar-B-Q Sauce
By: Alan Arthur
“This is a Kansas City-style sauce that I make in my restaurant. It is sweet and smoky with a little bite.”
Yield: 6 cups
- 2 cups ketchup
- 2 cups tomato sauce
- 1 1/4 cups brown sugar
- 1 1/4 cups red wine vinegar
- 1/2 cup unsulfured molasses
- 4 teaspoons hickory-flavored liquid smoke
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/4 teaspoon chili powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon celery seed
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon coarsely ground black pepper
- In a large saucepan over medium heat, mix together the ketchup, tomato sauce, brown sugar, wine vinegar, molasses, liquid smoke and butter. Season with garlic powder, onion powder, chili powder, paprika, celery seed, cinnamon, cayenne, salt and pepper.
- Reduce heat to low, and simmer for up to 20 minutes. For thicker sauce, simmer longer, and for thinner, less time is needed. Sauce can also be thinned using a bit of water if necessary. Brush sauce onto any kind of meat during the last 10 minutes of cooking.
North Carolina BBQ Sauce
“This sauce is vinegar-based with no ketchup. It’s very tangy, very thin, and wonderful on pork, chicken, and even tofu!”
Yield: 1 gallon
- 1 gallon white vinegar
- 1 1/3 cups cayenne pepper
- 1 1/8 cups ground black pepper
- 3/4 cup mustard powder
- 1/2 cup salt
- 3 lemons
- 2 (10 fluid ounce) bottles Worcestershire sauce
- Combine the vinegar, cayenne pepper, black pepper, mustard powder, salt, lemons, and Worcestershire sauce in a large pot; bring to a simmer. Bring to a boil, then turn heat to low and simmer for at least 30 minutes.
Applesauce Barbeque Sauce
“Applesauce gives this sauce a nice thick texture that coats well on meat. It has a sweet spicy flavor that is excellent on chicken or pork.
Yield: 3 1/2 cups
- 1 cup applesauce
- 1/2 cup ketchup
- 2 cups unpacked brown sugar
- 6 tablespoons lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- In a saucepan over medium heat, mix applesauce, ketchup, brown sugar, lemon juice, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and cinnamon. Bring mixture to a boil. Remove from heat, and cool completely. Use to baste the meat of your choice.
Mustard Based BBQ Sauce
“This is a great version of the traditional mustard-based BBQ sauce. Most sauces are ketchup based, but in the South we prefer the mustard variation. You ought to try it at least once.”
Yield: 1 1/2 cups
- 1 cup prepared yellow mustard
- 1/4 cup honey
- 1/4 cup light brown sugar
- 1/4 cup white vinegar
- Ground black pepper to taste
- In a saucepan over medium heat, stir together the mustard, honey, brown sugar and vinegar. Season with black pepper. Bring to a boil, and let simmer for 5 minutes. Pour over cooked pulled pork or beef. If you want more flavor, let the meat simmer in the sauce for about 30 minutes.
Happy Father’s Day!
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Whether he puts on a suit and tie or a pair of cargo pants- he is undoubtedly the single most influential person in your children’s lives. So this year, set aside the day to show him just how much his love and devotion means to you and your family. Plan a customized day around memory-making experiences.
Start by making a list of all your husband’s hobbies and favorite pastimes – as well as his most objectionable chores. Don’t forget to get the kids involved; not only will they love to be included, but their observations of dad’s likes and dislikes will astonish you. Then together, map out the perfect day for Dad. Start with his favorites for breakfast; be creative, even if it’s not your typical morning meal. Follow up with a few hours of whatever activity he likes best. If it’s golf, suit up the whole family in knickers for nine holes. Regardless of skill or age, the attempt to learn and become interested in one of his favorite pastimes will go a long way.
If watching football makes the top of the list, then jump online and order a few highlight reels of his favorite game, team or season. Then pop some popcorn and settle in by cheering or booing at the appropriate times (fake it, if you must). Round out the afternoon by relieving him of any household duties he can’t stand; taking out the trash, changing dirty diapers, or mowing the lawn. Whatever the task may be, it’s made meaningful by taking it off his “to-do” list. Ultimately, this is a day where effort counts. Spending quality time with you and the kids is what will make it memorable and a sure hit.
How are you celebrating Father’s Day this year? I’d love to hear your plans and ideas.
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