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Memorial/Independence/Patriot Day

Dates to remember in July:
 
July 4 - Independence day
 
Birth month info for July - birth flowers, birthstone and meanings, and zodiac signs:
 
BIRTH FLOWERS:  Larkspur and Water Lily
 
BIRTHSTONE AND MEANING:  Ruby - Contentment
 
ZODIAC SIGNS:
June 22 - July 22 - Cancer, The Crab
 
Great recipes for that July 4 Bar-B-Q:
 
HOGS IN A SLEEPING BAG:
1 (16-ounce) package polska kielbasa
2 sheets puff pastry, thawed and lightly rolled out
1 egg
Honey mustard, barbeque sauce or apricot jam, for serving, optional

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Cut kielbasa into 6 (4-inch) pieces. Cut puff pastry sheets into thirds (6 strips). Roll each piece of kielbasa in puff pastry and place on a baking sheet.

Beat egg in a small dish and brush generously over pastry. Bake until pastry is golden brown and puffed, about 20 minutes. Serve with mustard, barbeque sauce, or jam, if desired.

PINEAPPLE BURGERS - An interesting twist!

1 pound ground sirloin
8 pineapple slices, canned or fresh
8 hamburger buns
pineapple juice from can or fresh pineapple
1 cup ketchup
1/4 cup barbeque sauce
salt and pepper

Divide ground sirloin into eight 1/2" balls and eight patties. Place patties on grill and add sauce on each pattie, grill for a couple of minutes turn over add more sauce. Put one ground sirloin ball into each hole in pineapple slices. Place on grill, add sauce, and grill a couple minutes more before turning over and adding more sauce. Place buns on grill to warm. Place one pattie and one pineapple slice between two buns and serve.

Sauce: in saucepan over medium heat, add ketchup, barbeque sauce and pineapple juice and bring to boil.

TEXAS POTATO SALAD

4 strips bacon
1 pound small red potatoes, unpeeled
1 green onion, sliced
1 boiled egg, chopped

1/4 cup mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper

Cook bacon until crispy. Drain, reserving a few tablespoons of the grease, and crumble. Set aside.

Place the potatoes in a large saucepan. Cover with cold water. Add a tablespoon of the bacon grease and some salt and place over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil and cook until the potatoes are tender, about 15 to 20 minutes. Drain and let the potatoes cool and then cut into bite-size pieces.

In a separate bowl, mix mayonnaise, Dijon mustard, salt, and pepper for dressing.

Toss potatoes, onion, and egg in dressing. Add bacon. Serve chilled.

I haven't tried this tea, but it sounds cooling and delish!

MINT ICED TEA

 quart water
4 family size tea bags (recommended: Luzzienne)
2 cups sugar
1 bunch mint leaves
1 lemon, slices for garnish

In a large pot bring the water to a boil. Remove pot from heat, add the tea bags, cover with a lid, and allow tea to steep in water for 20 minutes. Take a 1 gallon jug and pour the sugar into the jug and cover with some hot tap water. Stir the sugar around to dissolve while the tea is steeping. Once the tea has steeped, remove the lid and the tea bags. Pour the tea into the jug with the sugar, stir, and place the tea bags back into the jug. Stir the tea well, making sure the sugar dissolves. Fill the jug with cold water to yield 1 gallon.
To serve, pour each glass of tea and garnish with a slice of lemon and mint leaves

AND I ALWAYS LEAVE ROOM FOR DESSERT!

LEMON ALMOND CAKE

  box (18.25 ounces) lemon cake mix
1 1/4 cups water
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 tablespoons lemon extract, divided
3 eggs
1/2 cup ground almonds
2 1/2 cups sweetened flaked coconut, very lightly toasted
1 can (16 ounces) lemon frosting
3 ounces sliced almonds, toasted

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Butter and flour 2 (8 or 9-inch) round cake pans. Combine cake mix, water, oil, 1 tablespoon lemon extract and eggs in a large bowl. Beat for 2 minutes, or until well blended. Stir in ground almonds and 1/2 cup coconut. Divide batter between prepared pans. Bake for 30 minutes, or until toothpick inserted into center of cakes comes out clean. Cool cakes in pans on cooling rack for 15 minutes. Invert cakes onto cooling rack; remove pans. Cool cakes completely. Place 1 cake layer on serving platter. Combine 1/2 cup frosting with 1 tablespoon lemon extract and spread over cake layer on platter. Top with second cake layer. Frost top and sides of cake with remaining frosting. Press sliced almonds around cake sides. Sprinkle top with remaining coconut.

Here's July 4 craft links and activity links for kids and adults as well:  

For the kids:  http://ccb_themes.tripod.com/themes_july4.html

http://www.kidsdomain.com/holiday/july4/links.html

                                                 AND

For you:  http://rubyglen.com/craftsholiday.htm

http://www.thesmartyarns.com/project1.html