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Celebrate BHM: Howard University ASB

Published in Parent


Howard University Embarks on 20 years of Service for Alternative Spring Break

Each year, hundreds of Howard University students give up vacations and trips home to honor the University’s motto of “truth and service” during the Alternative Spring Break program. This year, more than 400 students will tackle volunteer more than16,000 hours in Baltimore, Chicago, Detroit, Memphis, New Orleans, Washington D.C. as well as Haiti to tackle societal issues including gun control, homelessness and illiteracy.

Since 1994, the ASB program has been committed to fostering a spirit of service and leadership among Howard University students. The program is coordinated through the Office of the Dean of the Chapel with significant institutional support from the Office of the President coupled with the help of generous donations from Howard alumni, students, staff, faculty and residents from Washington, Maryland and Virginia.

This year, volunteers will return to Baltimore and Memphis to tackle gang violence and public health, respectively. They will also combat illiteracy in Detroit, homelessness and HIV/AIDS prevention in DC and gun violence in Chicago. Law Students will continue post-Katrina work with the Office of the Public Defender.

In an effort to raise $50,000 for ASB, Howard University radio, WHUR 96.3 FM, will host “Helping Hands,” a 12-hour radiothon on Sunday, March 2, from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m.

All donations to this year’s ASB will help build on the ongoing legacy of service to humanity that Howard University is known for. For more information on how to support students serving the nation, please click here.


Urban Menu: Spinach, Bacon, & Mushrooms Salad

Published in ADVENTURES


Spinach Salad with Bacon & Mushrooms

Yields: 4 Servings. Preparation time: 15 minutes Cooking time: 6 minutes

Adapted from A Well-Seasoned Appetite by Molly O’Neill


  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon coarse salt
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 4 slices bacon, diced
  • 1 tablespoon, plus 1 teaspoon each: coarse mustard, apple cider vinegar
  • 1 pound spinach, stemmed, torn
  • 2 large portobello mushrooms, stemmed, cut in slices, oven dried, see note


Heat the oven to 200 degrees. Cook the bacon in a skillet over medium heat until brown and crisp, about 6 minutes. Remove from skillet; drain on a paper towel. Meaure out 2 tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons of bacon fat; transfer to a small bowl.

Whisk in the mustard; whisk in the vinegar. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Place the spinach leaves in a large bowl; add dressing. Toss to coat. Season with additional salt and pepper if needed. Divide the salad among 4 plates. Top with dried mushrooms and bacon.

Note: to dry mushroom, brush the mushroom slices with oil; spread on a baking sheet in a single layer. Sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and pepper. Bake until dried, about 1 hour.


Urban Menu: Red Velvet Cup Cakes

Published in ADVENTURES


Yields: 8 Servings or 1 dozen cupcakes & 2 mini-loaf pans. Preparation time: 15 minutes Baking time: 30 to 35 minutes for cakes; 20 minutes for cupcakes 


    • 2 cups cake flour
    • 3 tablespoons unsweetended cocoa powder
    • 2 teaspoons baking powder
    • 1 teaspoon salt
    • 1½ sticks ¾ cups butter
    • 1¾ cups sugar
    • 4 eggs
    • 1 cup milk
    • 3 teaspoons red food coloring
    • 1 teaspoon vanilla
    • Buttercream Frosting, below


Heat the oven to 350 degrees. Stir the flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt together in a large bowl; set aside. Beat the butter and sugar with a mixer on medium until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs one at a time; set aside. Stir together the milk, food coloring and vanilla in a small bowl. Alternating, fold the red mixture and flour mixture into the egg mixture, ending with the dry ingredients. Transfer to two 9-inch greased and floured pans and/or paper lined muffin tins. Bake until an inserted toothpick comes out clean, about 30 to 35 minutes for cakes or mini loaves, about 20 minutes for cupcakes. Cool in pans 5 minutes before turning out onto racks. Cool completely; frost with icing. Note: Beat together 6 cups powdered sugar, 2 sticks softened butter 4 to 6 tablespoons milk or heavy cream and 2 teaspoons vanilla until light and fluffy.

Adapted from B. Smith “Rituals and Celebrations”

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Travel Stress Free this Thanksgiving

Published in Parent

Black family in car

Nothing beats getting your extended family together for Thanksgiving. It is a great time to catch up and laugh about old times. The only aggravating thing, of course, is actually traveling to meet up. There are already stories of travel nightmares in the news two days before Thanksgiving. This can be particularly troubling if you have kids who become easily bored.

In these days of the Internet and video games, the average child seems to have an attention span of about 30 seconds. If a glassy-eyed child killing things on a screen is not your idea of good thing, what alternatives do you have? Giving your child a writing journal is a great way to keep them busy without resorting to violent video games.

For many kids, the only way to truly get their attention on a thanksgiving trip is to get them involved. The best method for doing this is to give them a journal and ask them to keep notes on everything they seem. At the end of the day, they should be encouraged to write a journal entry about what happened during the day. It will give them an outlet for their thoughts, promote good writing skills and preserve family experiences they would otherwise forget with time.


A good journal for kids will combine a number of characteristics. First, it should be compact. Second, it should have a case to protect it from rain, spills and just because kids will be kids. Third, the journal should contain blank areas for notes, doodles and so on. Finally, the journal should contain cue spaces to remind children to pay attention to certain things and write them down. Cues should include:

1. Who went on the family vacation,

2. Places visited and why they are important,

3. The most memorable experience each day,

4. New friends made and contact information for them,

5. Which family members were present, and

6. Impressions.

As time passes, the family vacations journals will remind your kids of past trips. Memories fade with time, even for kids. By keeping a journal, kids will open their eyes to things around them, enhancing your Thanksgiving family gathering. Hopefully, it will also keep them busy and away from video games.



Celebrate BHM: 35 Best African American Museums

Published in Parent

"Be black, shine, aim high." -- Leontyne Price


Need some historical sites and landmarks to take your children for Black History Month? Below are 35 great places to check out and inspire your kids today:

Name                                                                                                                                                 Location & Date Founded

Birmingham Civil Rights Institute Birmingham Alabama 1992
Black History 101 Mobile Museum Detroit Michigan 1995
Black History Museum and Cultural Center of Virginia Richmond Virginia 1988
Bontemps African American Museum Alexandria Louisiana 1988
Brown v. Board of Education National Historic Site Topeka Kansas 2004
California African American Museum Los Angeles California 1981
Charles H. Wright Museum of African American History Detroit Michigan 1965
Creole Heritage Folk Life Center Opelousas Louisiana 1970s (early)
Crispus Attucks Museum Indianapolis Indiana 1998
Delta Cultural Center Helena Arkansas 1991
Dorchester Academy and Museum Midway Georgia 2004
Dr. Carter G. Woodson African American History Museum St. Petersburg Florida 2006
DuSable Museum of African American History Chicago Illinois 1960
Frederick Douglass National Historic Site Washington D.C. 1962
George Washington Carver Museum, The Tuskegee Alabama 1941
George Washington Carver Museum Phoenix Arizona 1980
George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center Austin Texas 1980
Great Blacks in Wax Museum Baltimore Maryland 1983
Great Plains Black History Museum Omaha Nebraska 1975
Idaho Black History Museum Boise Idaho 1995
International Civil Rights Center and Museum Greensboro North Carolina 2010
Isaac Scott Hathaway Museum at Lexington History Center Lexington Kentucky 2002
John E. Rogers African American Cultural Center Hartford Connecticut 1991
John G. Riley Center/Museum of African American History and Culture Tallahassee Florida 1996
Kansas African-American Museum Wichita Kansas 1997
L.E. Coleman African-American Museum Halifax County, Virginia Virginia 2005
LaVilla Museum Jacksonville Florida 1999
Legacy Museum of African American History Lynchburg Virginia 2000
Martin Luther King, Jr., National Historic Site Visitors Center Atlanta Georgia 1996
Mary McLeod Bethune Home Daytona Beach Florida 1956


Mama Getaway!

Published in ADVENTURES


We all know that moms (and dads) can get burnt out quick! Taking a break is mandatory for your physical health, mental peace, and emotional refueling. Yet, this adventure is just for the ladies... sorry Dads- the next one is for you!

The Concept:

"Look to Your Childhood Dreams to Find Your Passion in Life!" -Fleacé Weaver,

Adventure Opportunity: is a travel club for fun loving travelers. As a child, founder Ms. Fleacé Weaver dreamt of traveling to foreign lands. Fleace was nicknamed "Road Runner" because she was never afraid to leave the security of her home to pursue an adventure. In 1999 she founded, a regional social website that services over 23,000 members in the greater Los Angeles area. In 2006 she turned to her childhood passion and organized "Bella Italia" a whirlwind tour of Northern Italy for 50 Black women, in 2007 it was 53 to Southern Italy, in May 2008, 23 women joined her on the French Riviera and 65 signed-up for the 2008 tour of Northern Italy. Following the lead of her travelers and requests for more destinations, was born.


Greece, Dubai, Paris, Italy, Shanghai and more!

Claim to Fame:

These are not your grandmother's tours!

Connect & Learn More:


Urban Menu: Derby Cheese Straws

Published in ADVENTURES


Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 15 minutes

Total Time: 30 minutes

Yield: 24 pieces



1 1/2 cups grated sharp Cheddar cheese

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened

1 1/2 cups flour

1 teaspoon each: sugar, baking powder

1/2 teaspoon grund red pepper


Heat oven to 350 degrees. Beat cheese and butter with a mixer on medium speed until smooth. Roll dough out on a floured surface to about 1/2-inch thick and cut into two dozen 2-inch strips or transfer dough in batches to a cookie press fitted with a star plate and press out 2-inch strips on to an ungreased cookie sheet. Bake until straws begin to brown, about 15 minutes.

For more great recipes from great black chefs, visit:

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