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“Just don’t give up what you’re trying to do. Where there is love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong.”
– Ella Fitzgerald

 

DATES TO REMEMBER

Black History Month – First recognized as Negro History Week, the holiday was created by Carter G. Woodson in 1926. Woodson believed it was important to acknowledge black Americans and their accomplishments that were usually left out of educational curriculum in an attempt to try and bridge the gap between black and whites. Carter Woodson was one of the first African Americans to receive a docorate from Havard Univesity. He spent his life educating folks on Black History and was named, ‘The Father of Black History.” In 1976, the government decided to expand the observance into what we now know as “Black History Month.” I challenge you to look up an important figure in black history and learn something new!

In honor of Black History Month, the blues are taking over! Check out the Americana Music Triangle to stay up to date on all events happening along the Gold Record Road and let the blues heal your soul.

February 2nd: Ground Hog Day – Will Punxsutawney Phil see his shadow or will be blessed with a fast approaching spring? The first Groundhog day was February 2nd 1886.

February 7th: Super Bowl Sunday – Are you ready for the biggest game of the year? The Denver Broncos will be taking on the Carolina Panthers at Levi’s Stadium in sunny Santa Clara, California. Who will you be rooting for? I have to follow my man, Peyton all the way! Game starts at 5:30 PM on CBS.

Want to be the MVP of your Super Bowl party? Check out my recipe below for Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas that will surely be a touchdown!

February 9th: Mardi Gras – Did you know Mardi Gras can be traced back to the medieval times of Europe? Lavish parties and copious amounts of drinking were popular way back when so it’s only fair that we continue the tradition. Whether you are in New Orleans for the festivities or not, there will be SOMETHING going on Feruary 9th. So go out and don’t think about that excruciating hangover you will have the next day. Once party ends, religion comes in. February 10th marks Ash Wednesday and the beginning of lent. What will you be giving up for the next 40 days?

As long as you don’t give up food, be sure to try out this Louisiana Shrimp Bake and live out your inner Creole. Recipe below.

February 14th: Valentine’s Day – Don’t forget to get your significant other a present whether it’s dinner, flowers, or whatever. You don’t want to be in the dog house. If you are like myself and single, be sure to get yourself something fabulous!

February 15th: Presidents’ Day – Time to celebrate our first President and all those who have followed. Presidents’ day started back in 1796 when people were celebrating George Washington’s final year of being President.

February 29th: Leap Day – Don’t forget 2016 is a Leap Year so make sure you don’t flip your calendar early!

 

Turning a Negative into a Positive

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When your fiancée decides to leave you weeks before your wedding, you don’t generally understand how this could be a good thing. That is unless you are Dana Olsen. Olsen had been planning the wedding of her dreams, but six weeks before the big day, everything changed. Her fiancée got cold feet and called it quits. Olsen was left trying to figure out what to do seeing as it was too late to obtain refunds or cancel orders. Dana and her mother came up with a wonderful of partnering with Mary’s Place in Seattle WA to give 150 struggling women and children an unforgettable evening.

Having lived their own nightmares, receiving a magical night on behalf of Dana Olsen was something they will never forget. “It takes a big heart to give away to other people everything your heart was in,” said one of the attendees. Ensuring everyone has the chance to feel their best, stylists were on hand to do hair and makeup as well as a generous number of donations of dresses and jewelry.

“I just want it to be really fun,” Dana told KING News. “I mean, if we can’t have a good night, I hope that they have a great time.”

Read more HERE!

 

Young Girl Restores Faith in Humanity

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Gianni Graham of Norfolk Virginia is on a mission to give homeless girls their very own Barbie. “I feel like girls in shelters should have the same as girls not in shelters,” Gianni told WTKR. Graham’s mother told news her daughter started the campaign with two Barbie’s she received for Christmas. The young philanthropist is looking to receive 1,000 dolls and is well on her way with over 600 being donated. Gianni plans to hand deliver the dolls and mail them to a list of 1,000 young girls living in shelters.

Read more HERE!

 

THIS MONTH’S RECIPES

buffalo-chicken-quesadillas-91Buffalo Chicken Quesadillas

Ingredients

  • 2 cups of shredded rotisserie chicken
  • ½ cup buffalo wing sauce
  • 2 tablespoons ranch dressing
  • 2 teaspoons canola oil
  • 1/8 cup cilantro
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1/8 teaspoon pepper
  • 4 flour tortillas (10 inch)
  • 2 cups shredded Mexican cheese blend
  • ¼ sour cream for dipping

Directions

Heat skillet to medium heat. In a small bowl, toss chicken, buffalo sauce, ranch, cheese, salt & pepper and cilantro.

Lightly grease pan with olive. Place tortilla on pan, top with ¼ chicken mixture and fold in half. Cook for 2 min and flip for 2 min.

 

Louisiana Shrimp BakeLouisiana-Shrimp-Bake_Large600_ID-1095396

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds large fresh shrimp, peeled and deveined
  • 1/3 cup butter, melted
  • 1/4 cup dry red wine
  • 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons minced garlic
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground red pepper

Directions

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Place shrimp in a single layer in a 9- x 13-inch baking dish that has been coated with cooking spray.

Combine remaining ingredients and give them a good mix, then pour over shrimp.

Bake uncovered 7 to 8 minutes, or until shrimp turns pink.

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

b9aea952e2e33305b739c8b2_324x408Hello! I would like to introduce myself as PLA Media’s newest intern. It’s an honor to work with the this team and I hope it serves as a catalyst for an amazing career in Music City!

A few things about myself:
I graduated from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale Illinois with a degree in Music. I was classically trained in singing. If you ever want to be serenaded with a German Art song, you know where to find me.
I have a dog who is treated like a princess. Her name is Cardi, and she’s a Border Collie/Corgi mix.
I have 8 pairs of cowboys boots. They never go out of fashion!
I am a vinyl junkie. I can’t wait to raid the record stores here! I can already envision my bank account dwindling…

My Top 3 Vinyl Records
The Stranger by Billy Joel
Lady Soul by Aretha Franklin
At Folsom Prison by Johnny Cash

By my next newsletter, I hope to have become a bonafide Nashvillian and will spill the beans on some of my adventures! Till next time y’all!

– Jackie Intravaia