Posts categorized as Holiday

The Irish Pumpkin

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The most iconic image for this time of year is the glowing jack o’lantern. But where did this tradition come from? Carving pumpkins came to America by way of Irish immigrants. Perhaps this is common knowledge for all the Irish folks here in Rockaway but it was news to me. My friend sent me an article from history.com that I found so interesting. It’s about the origins of pumpkin carving. And so, I also learned about the legend of “Stingy Jack.” The story goes: “The practice of making jack-o’-lanterns originated […]

tagged in halloween

Deep Dive On Decorating

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I’ve always enjoyed decorating for the holidays. I believe it’s because of the fond memories I have as a child with my sisters and father, preparing the house for whichever celebration was up next. We’d help dad string Christmas lights, begging him to go higher and higher on the roof! Notably, strapping baby Jesus down with cables “so nobody would steal him” was a sought-after task. For Easter, we’d use Scotch tape to adhere the cardboard bunnies to the glass on the front bay window. My father also had the […]

tagged in halloween, holiday

Homemade Coquito For The Holidays

Elizabeth Medina whipping up two batches

You’ve seen Anthony Medina’s byline in the paper. He’s one of The Wave’s beat reporters. But he’s also an expert Coquito-maker, and this is the second year his family has been selling their version of the holiday beverage. In Spanish, Coquito means little coconut. It’s a traditional Christmas and New Year’s drink that originated in Puerto Rico. It’s made with Puerto Rican rum, coconut milk, cream of coconut, and sweetened condensed milk. Other spices and flavoring can be added like ginger, anise, nutmeg, cinnamon, or egg yolk. A few weeks […]

tagged in christmas, drinks

DIY Easter Egg Coloring

The bright color created from cabbage and turmeric

I normally host Easter Sunday for my family and friends, and right now, I’d be gearing up for the party – ordering the paper goods, getting all the soda, liquor and wine, buying the canned antipasto, olives, artichokes and roasted red peppers.  Today and Saturday I would’ve been on my feet, cooking nonstop in preparation for Sunday. It feels strange to not be doing it this year. To mitigate this feeling of “Easter is canceled”, I pulled out the bins of decorations from the basement and made the house look […]

tagged in easter

Italian Easter Bread Gone Horribly Wrong

Placing the eggs within the braid was a challenge

I was a little overzealous after my successful baking venture with homemade pretzels a few weeks back. This past weekend, I decided to bake something for the Easter season, to get into the spirit. It would cheer me up, since obviously, I had to cancel my annual Easter Sunday Party. I thought it would be fun to bake Italian Easter bread (Pane Di Pasqua). This bread is symbolic of the season.The eggs represent rebirth and renewal. The bread, the Body of Christ, and the sweetness is for celebrating after the […]

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one lucky plant

Oxalis regnellii,

Oxalis regnellii, better known as the Shamrock Plant is a lovely little one that will bring bright color (and maybe good luck) into your home well past St. Patrick’s Day. The Shamrock Plant reaches a max height of 8 inches tall. The leaves are clover-shaped and in the spring, fall, and winter, small delicate flowers appear. There are over 570 species with a rainbow range of color, from bright and dark greens to the sought-after burnt oranges and dark purple foliage. Exposure to the sun will cause these color nuances in […]

Christmas This and That

My cherished Christmas ornaments from my grandparents

It’s true. I started decorating for Christmas inside the house a week before Thanksgiving. Don’t judge! I like to take my time and enjoy the experience. But alas, Christmas traditions never fail and I traditionally have terrible luck with Christmas lights. This year, my indoor tree lights broke. Only half the string would light up. What made this so frustrating was that I bought two new sets only last year. I thought I’d be all good. How do these things break so easily?! The Grinch in me set in. I […]

tagged in christmas, holiday

Mistaken Identity, It’s Not A Pine Tree

After receiving this plant follow my care instruction in this article. Remove it’s decorations after the holiday to reveal a beautiful living tree in need of your attention

After receiving this plant follow my care instruction in this article. Remove it’s decorations after the holiday to reveal a beautiful living tree in need of your attention. Sometime in August I was walking back from the gym when my neighbor Brady called me over. “Hey, you gotta sec?” He runs upstairs and brings down a very sad looking Charlie Brown type tree. “If anyone can save this, it will be you.” I was touched Brady thought of me as a plant healer! On inspection I knew this would be […]

tagged in christmas, holiday, plants

Going Off The Deep End

barbie halloween the glorified tomato

Season two of Mindhunter* was released in August on Netflix and I binge-watched it. The show is centered around the new-at-the-time Behavioral Science Unit of the FBI, formed in the late 1970s. The main characters interview imprisoned serial killers to understand what makes them tick, in the hopes of solving contemporary cases. The show is so good. After I disposed of that series, Netflix recommended Criminal Minds – 10 seasons of brutal serial murder cases. It’s similar to Mindhunter, as it’s about the same Behavioral Science FBI Unit, but based […]

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A Sweet New Year

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I went to school on Long Island and it was mostly Italian and Irish Catholic kids. There were a few Jewish and Indian children but to be frank, I wasn’t very aware of our differences, in particular with respect to religious beliefs. Of course, we read the Old Testament in CCD, but it didn’t click. I was very aware, though, that we got a bunch of days off from school because of Jewish holidays, Rosh Hashanah being one of them. And they say the school districts on Long Island are […]

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