Wednesday, August 25 2021
Decide if it should it be a gift to the whole team or something given to each member of the team. Whether the gift will be part of a recognition program being planned or as a way of remembering a holiday season, determine if the gift should have practical, unique, or fun characteristics, or some combination of those. And of course consider what the team gift needs to say besides thanks and whether it should be a single present, award, token, or if it should be a gift basket containing multiple items.
1. In considering practical team gifts, think about what work related items, food, or personal items may be appropriate. If considering a gift basket, a coffee mug allows for making individual miniature gift baskets for each team member by placing several small items in the mug, then wrapping it in cellophane and tying a bow on it along with a note of appreciation or celebration.
If it is to be a team gift basket then it should be larger and contain office supplies, food, or work items for the whole team where several items are put in a bucket, tote bag, or plastic container the team may use for transporting the materials. Then wrap the container and items in cellophane add a ribbon to hold it closed along with a purchased and signed card. To make a more specialized gift basket, consider building it around a theme by including a business book that helps members with their team or project roles and including materials that are appropriate to book topic. Example book topics include time management, goal setting, process mapping, meeting management, delivering presentations, project management, and team-building.
2. For a more unique team gift, consider office supplies members can not normally get out of their office supply cabinet. It may be well worth the time someone spends walking around in the local office supply store to find something unique and within a set budget for the team. The uniqueness of the gift will show the team that an effort was made to find something only those specially recognized for their team contribution would get within the organization. If a unique item can not be found, then a standard office item that can have the team name put on it may be used in order to make it more unique.
If it is an appreciation gift at the end of a long project, then put on it the project team name and the project timeline, which would be the project start date through the desired completion date if it has not yet occurred. If these ideas require too much effort, the old standby of a T-shirt or golf shirt with the team name and logo will also work as a unique gift idea. These shirts can be both practical and fun depending on the way in which they are presented to the team members. If a shirt alone does not seem like enough, then make it into a unique gift basket by wrapping it around an award or other office gift and tying it into a bundle so the shirt is an added bonus to the gift instead of the main thing given.
3. A gift that represents fun lets the team know it is OK to take a break from what may be too much work or stress upon occasion. Taking a break can increase future team productivity because a few minutes relaxing can often revitalize everyone. Fun can be brought into that break time as a way to increase both group and individual creativity and serve as a motivator to accomplish a better job on whatever project is at hand. Fun items to consider include playing cards to use in the break room, team toys or stress squeezers to use during long meetings to encourage creativity, or a book of team-building games or activities as meeting starters.
Another option is to create fun outside of work place to encourage interaction and building of deeper relationships among team members. This outside activity could be something like passes to a game the whole team might enjoy, or tickets to a local concert, or a group gift card for dinner at a local restaurant. Although individual gifts may be the easiest way to create fun, with a little thought a great gift basket for the entire team can be made that includes multiple items for both at work and outside work activities.
Tuesday, August 24 2021
Life is easier and more efficient when you take advantage of food delivery services. Whether you are serving individuals or huge groups, here are some of the reasons why it's preferable and smart to simply order food.
It is easier for you to keep track of your calories.
When it comes to strict diet, there is just so much effort involved when you make your own meals. These days you can order healthy and tasty meals that would meet your recommended daily servings of fruits and vegetables. Is is easier to eat well.
You can save a lot of your time.
Whether you're feeding only yourself or a group, ordering food will spare you meal preparation time. You can focus on other important tasks instead. There is no need to pause from work just to prepare your food. If you are a mother, then you can better appreciate the ease of simply ordering food. And if you're entertaining some guests, simply go for snack catering or opt for sandwich delivery. This way you can concentrate on other hostess duties.
You can budget more effectively.
Very few people have mastered the art and science of menu planning. Staying within your budget for meals at home or food on your events can be guaranteed if you simply order. It would be easier to determine how much you are paying per meal compared to making meals from scratch. Aside from that, ordering from the best catering company ensures that you will serve healthy food.
You can afford the luxury of variety.
When it comes to meals they can prepare, most people have a very limited repertoire. To ensure that you won't get bored with your fare, you need plenty of organization, planning, experimentation, and imagination. Now there is no reason to put in so much concentration on food except if this is your profession. With food deliveries, you have variety of choices.
You get exactly what you feel like eating.
The option to simply order meals is smart and this is definitely a mark of advanced civilization. Take advantage of food delivery services and make life easier.
Wednesday, August 18 2021
Technology has influenced every aspect of our life and now even ordering food has become simple and easy, with a number of restaurants offering this facility through their websites and professionally developed mobile apps. Whether you are at your home, office or university, all you need to do is choose what you would like to eat and it will be delivered to you, hot and fresh, within no time, provided it is within their area of reach.
As the whole process is managed online, you no longer need to call the delivery restaurant to place your order. You can log on their respective sites, go on social media sites or even use apps, which are specially developed and customized for the convenience of the users. While ordering online food you do not need to commute or travel to a restaurant located at the other end of the city. It is definitely a time saving option as you can order food from anywhere in your area and get it delivered it too, all this from the comfort of your home. Also, using mobile apps for ordering food is definitely a great option for tech-savvy people, who are always looking for ways to make their life more convenient.
The vast online database of such apps offers you a lot of options to choose from. You can find an entire list of restaurants in your area and make your choice, depending on the kind of food you would like to have, whether it is veg, non veg food, Chinese, Thai, Indian or continental. As these apps provide you round the clock service, you can be sure that you will never have to stay hungry and you can expect them to serve your favorite meal at any time of the day or night. It is a great option for students and working people as well, who mostly find themselves out of options, when looking for a place to eat or take away food at the odd hours.
This facility not only benefits the consumers, but various small and big restaurants as well. By developing an app and delivering their food to the homes of their customers, they can definitely improve their customer base, without investing in swanky interiors or paying salaries to a huge staff. Along with being reasonable and offering food home delivery, many restaurants also offer discounts and special deals. You can make great use of such deals while ordering your food online.
Cost-effective, time saving, convenient, easy payment and fast delivery are some of the beneficial qualities of ordering food online, which have made it such a popular option today.
Monday, August 16 2021
Okay, so here's the deal. What kind of meat, what kind of sauce, what method of cooking, what type of wood or heat, and how is it served. A lot to consider. And one thing is for sure--we're not talking a backyard Weber grill here, folks. This is serious business, so let's get to it.
In the South, especially North Carolina, the most popular outdoor version is the "pig pickin'." Named after the Cajun phrase cochon de lait, traditional Southern barbecue grew out of these gatherings, which entailed an entire hog roasted for hours, then letting guests pick their own meat off the finished product (hence the phrase "going whole hog").
But every region has its own version, usually pork, and the sauce is what makes the difference. In North Carolina, the three varieties of sauces include vinegar-based in the east, tomato-vinegar, sometimes mustard, in the central state and a heavier tomato-based sauce in western NC. The city of Lexington, just northeast of Charlotte, proclaims itself to be the "Barbecue Capital of the World," boasting one BBQ restaurant per 1000 people (talk about going whole hog). And throughout the South, the meat is more likely to be served on a plate, accompanied by hush puppies, coleslaw and baked beans, not in a bun smothered with ketchup (in some places considered a capital crime). When ordered, it's simply called Q and the sides are a given. (In Texas you might get a thick piece of toast, but that's another story.)
According to South Carolinians, only in their state will you find all four "official" sauces: mustard-based, vinegar-based, light or heavy tomato based. To the west, Memphis barbecue favors tomato- and vinegar-based sauces, and in some restaurants (or more likely BBQ shacks) the meat is rubbed with a mixture of dry seasonings before smoking over wood. Don't even think about charcoal briquettes, considered a misdemeanor at the very least.The dry rub ingredients are a closely guarded secret, setting them apart from the guy down the street. There may not even be a sauce basted over the meat, but simply served on the side.
Moving right along, in Alabama, Georgia, and Tennessee barbecue is usually pork, basted with a sweet red sauce. Some rebels even dare to use a mayo-based sauce with vinegar, mostly on chicken (which is not really considered a true barbecue, anyway.) A popular item in North Carolina and Memphis is the pulled pork sandwich served on a bun and often topped with coleslaw. Pulled pork is prepared by shredding the pork after it has been barbecued, then piled high.
In the Midwest, we're talking Kansas City-style, characterized by using different types of meat, which might be pulled pork or ribs, smoked sausage, beef brisket or ribs, smoked/grilled chicken, smoked turkey, and sometimes fish. Whew. They don't leave anything to chance, but remember, KC is a major meat packing city, no vegetarians allowed. Hickory wood delivers the best flavor and the sauce of choice is tomato-based, spicy or mild. No hush puppies--remember you're in the Midwest. And in Chicago, when they're not wolfing down Italian beef sandwiches, hot dogs or pizza, they like to season the meat with a dry rub, sear it on a hot grill, then cook it slowly in a special oven. The meat, typically ribs, is then finished with a sweet and tangy red sauce. Not to worry, they won't have you arrested if you order it on a bun (just no ketchup, understand?). Side dishes can be cooked greens, mac and cheese and sweet potatoes. Since many BBQ places are located on the South Side, they often comprise the main ticket item at soul food restaurants.
The state of Kentucky just has to be different, making mutton their meat of choice. In Maryland, beef is the ticket and it's grilled over a high heat, served rare with horseradish. Hardly even qualifies as barbecue, so why are we spending any time on this?
Don't mess with Texas, especially when it comes to BBQ. The bigger the better, and the Lone Star state takes no prisoners when it comes to their version (there ain't no other version, pardner.) This tradition runs deep, and king-sized barbecues, thanks in no small part to the number of famous politicians who have hosted them over the years, try to diminish their Northern wannabes by claiming the best darn barbecue in the world. The emphasis is on the meat itself, not a sauce. Usually "Texas-style" means "Central Texas-style" and that spells b-e-e-f. Brisket is cooked over indirect heat, low and slow. They favor mesquite wood or a combo of hickory and oak, then served up on plates with potato salad, beans, slaw and a big ole slice of Texas toast. This is serious eatin', y'all.
And there you have it. Exhausting, all these details and variations. Who's hungry? What will you choose and where? So much barbecue, so little time.
Tuesday, August 10 2021
Whenever someone follows me to our pantry they inevitably utter amazement at our preserves and pre-made meals and say: "How do you find the time?" Actually I find this activity saves me a lot of time and a heck of a lot of money. Here I will share some tips to help make this activity a lot more efficient and do-able.
Don't be intimidated by the size of some recipes - most are freezer friendly. And remember, it is just as much work to double or triple a recipe as it is to do just one batch. You have to wash the same dishes, clean the same kitchen and use the same heat. Having packages of meals ready to go is a great help to a busy and budget-minded household.
Divide very involved recipes into steps. For instance, you might make the sauce on Monday, the filling on Tuesday and put it all together for the freezer the next night. Breaking it up into steps like this helps the work fit in with tight schedules and makes the recipe more do-able.
Save all take-out foil containers and purchase a few so you always have some on hand. Likewise, save as many plastic clamshell containers from berries, salads or baked goods. Also, have a box or two of large sealable bags, or a lot of clean bread bags that you can reuse. All these bags and containers can be washed and reused dozens of times, and are recyclable when they have reached their end-of-life.
Try making at least one large recipe every week during peak garden harvest season. For instance you might make 8 small lasagnas, keep one meal out to serve that day, and perhaps leftovers the following day, but prepare the other 7 meals for the freezer. Before you know it you will have prepared dozens of meals varying from different types of pasta and lasagna to enchiladas and chili.
Most desserts can be baked in advance, stored in a freezer and taken out whenever you need something to serve or take with you on a trip. We like to have several different kinds of cookies frozen, a few loaves of bread, buns, flat breads and muffins so that we each have a choice of desserts and snacks available in the freezer. Having snacks on hand, and meals ready to pop in the oven, helps ease the chore of creating homemade meals and reduces the urge to buy fast food.
Monday, August 09 2021
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