The Daily Bug

Back to Bug's Walkabout......

By: palmettobug53, 3:00 AM GMT on May 01, 2007

Tomorrow is the first day for our employee walking competition. My employer, being a hospital, is always looking for ways to encourage health and fitness for it's students, staff and employees.

Since I was already using their step counting site, Every Step Counts, I figured I might as well sign up. We wound up with two teams, with 10 to a team. Each team member had to register on the Every Step Counts site and will log in their steps daily. I'm still a little foggy on details but I think the first team to "walk" from Charleston to Los Angeles is the winner of the competition. I'm assuming that there will be some type of prize for the winning team. The office next door also is going to compete. There are supposed to be monthly prizes awarded, for the most distance covered, I guess. I'm not sure how many teams signed up. We are one of Charleston's largest employers, so there could be a bunch. The first 30 teams are to get free T-shirts. We were rather late getting going, so I'll be surprised if T-shirts show up for us! LOL

We discussed a lot of info re: walking about this time last year on OGal's blog. Rather than try to dig back through all her archives and hundreds of comments, I thought I might resurrect the subject for a week or two. Hopefully, I can pick up some tips and websites to pass on to my teammates, so feel free to repost. I'm not sure how many of my teammates have used, or own, a pedometer or if any of them do any type of regular walking regime, so handy hints will be helpful. Esp. ways to keep the walking fun, so that everyone stays motivated.

I'd like to see if anyone has a lead on websites that convert activities to steps. I've seen plenty that show how many calories are burned by activity but not steps. We will be allowed to count steps that way, as well as by walking. They did give us a couple of sites but they only convert to steps for a few activities, such as running, biking, swimming, etc. I'd be more interested in finding a site that converts yard and household chores to steps. They do it by counting the minutes you do that activity and convert it to "steps".

Look forward to seeing what everyone comes up with, even if it was mentioned last year.

Every Step Counts This was where we signed up.

Red, I think I'm going to steal your walking woman. I tried to find something last night but it was late and I was tired. Just wanted to get the thread up.

Borrowing the Dancing Baby from Rays.... we need some rain!

Family Reunions

By: palmettobug53, 2:47 AM GMT on April 21, 2007

I don't know if family reunions are strictly a Southern custom or if they are common in other areas of the country or not. Or other countries, for that matter. All I know is that some of my best childhood memories are of all the conglomeration of relatives and the food at our family reunion.

Our reunion was started by my paternal grandmother's side of the family. We've been holding it annually for as long as I can remember. I have a vague recollection of a few of them being held at Edisto Gardens in Orangeburg, SC. There were a couple of pavilions with picnic tables. The Edisto River runs through Orangeburg and the park and we'd go swimming in it's cold black water. The reunions years ago were held on the first or second Sunday in June. By that time, it was hot enough to swim and I'll never forget the shock of that cold water, after doing a cannonball into it!

Some years later, they moved it to the Community Center in Lone Star, SC. After the dinner, we'd all troop over to Great-grandmother's house for a leisurely afternoon of visiting. The house was a typical early Southern farmhouse, built up on piers, with a wide central hall and stairs up to the attic, which was big enough to be used as a dormitory style bedroom. And was. Rooms ran down both sides of the central hallway, with doors opening to the hall, as well as to each other. The house never had a lick of paint and was a weathered grey.

There was no indoor plumbing. Water in the kitchen was supplied by an old fashioned pump handle arranged at the side of a sink. The sink simply drained outside the house. Chamber pots were discreetly arranged underneath the beds in each bedroom for night time use. There was a four holer out behind the house for use during the day. (My great uncle did have "indoor" plumbing installed in the early 70's) The outdoor facilities were the object of much curiosity and comment amongst us cousins, who were not used to such things. As well as a lot of screaming by the girl cousins because the boy cousins were "peeping at us!" There was no purient interest on the boy cousins' part at all; it was simply the for the enjoyment of hearing us screech.

All of us children ranged around the house and barnyard, as the grownups sat here and there around the house and porch, catching up on family doings.

The thing I remember best about the reunions was the food. Oh, that glorious food! All of it made at home from scratch. (Sadly, nowadays a lot of it is picked up at the deli or grocery store, already prepared, on the way there) Sliced tomatoes and cucumbers, fried chicken, white rice, red rice, butter beans, chicken perlow, ham, green beans, fried okra, fried squash, casseroles galore, cole slaw, potato salad, deviled eggs, pimento cheese sandwiches, egg salad sandwiches, homemade pickles, relish, piccalilly, chow chow, various fruit salads. And the dessert table! Apple pies, pecan pies, sweet potato pies, coconut cake, pound cake, ambrosia, Boston cream pie, German chocolate cake, brownies, fudge. And the beverage of choice: iced tea.

We still hold our reunion at the community center in Lone Star. The date has been moved now to the second Sunday after Easter. The number of people that attend has dwindled over the years, as the older members have passed away and the younger generations have scattered and/or lost interest. The majority of attendees are mostly of my father's generation, with a smattering of cousins my age and a few children. A far cry from the crowds in the 50's, 60's and even into the 70's. With the death of my great uncle, the gatherings at the old homeplace ceased, so on occasion, a few of us will head to a cousin's house in St. Matthews after the dinner for a little visiting.

I have a feeling that in another 15-20 years, there will be no more reunions to go to and all I'll have left is my memories of those hot summer days, playing with my cousins and eating so much food, I'd think I was going to bust. And very good memories they are.

Does your family hold reunions? Are they one day affairs or do they run for a 2 or 3 day weekend? I know some families hold theirs every 2-3 years and for a whole week. Tell us about yours.

And the food.... How about the food? What dishes are a must at your reunion? We want recipes for those dishes!

Here's a few that appear to be similiar to the ones I see at ours:

Southern Fried Chicken

Cole Slaw

Green Beans You can use this same recipe for butter beans.

Squash Casserole

Deviled Eggs Wiki, but it does tell you how to make them!

Pimento Cheese Sandwiches

Southern Style Potato Salad Keep in mind, despite what this (or any other recipe) tells you, you never, ever use Kraft or Miracle Whip. Always use Duke's or Hellmann's!

Coconut Cake This is very much like my Granny's coconut cake. You can cheat by using a white or yellow cake mix but it just won't taste the same. Granny also used a fresh coconut and shredded her own. She used the coconut milk for in the frosting.

Ambrosia recipe:
Bag of oranges, cut in half, crossways, and the sections scooped
Squeeze the empty halves to get all the juice
2 medium bananas, sliced
shredded coconut
some maraschino cherries
some chopped pecans

Chill and serve.

Surgery went well. ((hugs)) for Rays!

By: palmettobug53, 1:44 AM GMT on April 17, 2007

Due to the power outage we had yesterday, my plans for a leisurely afternoon of blogging and setting up a new entry were Gone With The Wind, so to speak....

So, until I can find some time when I'm not tired and/or half asleep to write up something halfway decent, here's an interim entry.

One of my girlfriends here in Charleston is heading to the Orlando area this weekend for a job. She will most likely be extremely busy and won't have much, if any, time to hang out but I'd like to try to rustle up some insider tips on places to eat or things for her to see or do, if she does want to get out and about for a little while. You know the what I'm talking about; the non touristy places, where the locals go. She's been to the Orlando area before, so I think she's hit the all big stuff, like Disneyworld and all that.

She will be there for 5 days, from the 22nd to the 27th of this month. I've asked her to let me know where she is staying, so that maybe some of you can give me a few tips to pass along to her for the area she will be in. A good place to eat at reasonable prices(breakfast, lunch and dinner). She loves antiques and shopping. But, unless she stays a couple of days after the job is done to relax, I doubt that she will have the time or energy for shopping.

Anyone have any ideas? Know it will be hard to say, until she lets me know where she'll be.

In Memorium

The views of the author are his/her own and do not necessarily represent the position of The Weather Company or its parent, IBM.