21st Birthday Cake Ideas – What You Should Have For The Celebrant

The 21st birthday is usually considered as another milestone in one’s life. This usually means that a person has really come-of-age. Cake ideas are among the must haves when it comes to a lot of different occasions, especially birthdays. The designs of the cakes will vary on what the celebrant wants his or her cake to look like. They are usually more mature, and of course it would be entirely different from the cartoon character birthday cakes, the princess cakes and the likes. However, if the celebrant is still young at heart, he or she might want to risk on a little bit of something like that.

The most popular ones are the elegant and sophisticated designs. If you want to play a little with the cake design, you might want to base the design on the interest, the personality or hobbies of the birthday celebrant. For men, you might want to base the design on sports or you and for women, cakes with flowers always work. But what usually works the best is when you keep the design of the cake as simple as possible. That way, they are more elegant and more mature to look at. It usually works big time. As for the flavor of the cake, you also might want to spice things up a little. There are cakes that are flavored with a bit of liquor and they really taste good and they make things a little bit more interesting since they taste different. But you really do not have to worry because they will not get you drunk unlike the real ones that can.

If you cannot make the cake yourself, you can always order one at the local bakeshops around your place. It would be less of a hassle if you just order it. And thanks to the help of the internet, you can order it online, which is a lot easier for you. All you have to do is to pick the design on the catalog. If you want a little bit of alterations, you can give them a call. However, it would still be best if you go to the local bakeshop and speak to the baker himself so you can make clearer instructions on what you want the cake to look like. You have to keep in mind that you order the cake way ahead of the scheduled party date so that the cake will look perfect.

How To Create Beautiful Wedding Invitations

Wedding invitations come in many different shapes, sizes, and styles. You can even have your invitations produced in any color under the sun too. No matter what you are looking for, there is likely a wedding invitation style that will suit your unique preferences. Even if you cannot find a product that precisely matches what you are looking for, you can always have cards custom made for your special occasion. These steps will help you create the perfect card.

Step 1 – Find a high quality manufacturer to purchase your products from. There are many manufacturers you can choose from today. You might have to do some research to find the best ones available though. Most companies will let you see what your card will look like before you make a large purchase too. Even if you are ordering online, you can acquire samples to review. Simply go to the website you are ordering from and utilize their sample ordering forms. You can also go directly to stores that carry a large selection of items to personally review the quality of each company’s products.

Step 2 – Design your cards. At this point, you should also select the style and theme you would like to have placed on your invitations. You can select any number of themes ranging from seasonally themed designs to subject based themes. If you are having a hard time selecting a theme, you should look through the themes that match your favorite season of the year. You can also review themes that relate to the season your wedding is being held in too. Also, if you want to select a subject based theme, you can review you and your loved one’s favorite hobbies and activities to find a great theme. Once you do this, you will certainly know which theme will best suit your wedding.

Step 3 – If you want to truly customize the cards you create, you should also select unique designs or monograms to place on your cards. Many companies have hundreds of designs for you to choose from. Once you have selected your favorite one, not only will your invitations look beautiful, but they will be very unique as well.

Step 4 – Remember to select custom and beautiful fonts too. The fonts placed on your cards are truly the final touch that brings the whole design of the stationery to life. By selecting fonts that you find to be beautiful, and by selecting fonts that match the theme you have chosen, your wedding invitations will certainly look magnificent.

How Hair Transplants Work

A hair transplant, as the name suggests, involves taking hair from one region of the scalp where hair is in abundance and replanting it in another area where growth is sparse. However, it is not individual hairs which are relocated but small groupings of 1-4 hairs called “follicular units”.

To determine the number of follicular units to be transplanted, the doctor measures the bald/thinning area and transplants about 35 follicular units into each square cm. The greater the contrast between the scalp color and hair color the more grafts are needed. Doctors may recommend that patients have one grafting session then wait about a year before deciding if they would like more. Healing time is about 7 days.

Surgeons generally limit the number of grafts per session to somewhere between 1200 and 2500 grafts, depending on how many are needed by the individual patient (the average cost is around 4 to 6 USD per follicular unit or graft). There is some debate between those who favour larger sessions, with up to 3,000 grafts, and staggered restoration where the number of grafts per session is low but the number of sessions is higher. There are arguments for both sides but keep in mind that your body needs time to heal and it may be unwise to demand more grafts per session than the doctor recommends.

The doctor will first make sure that the hair is trimmed short in the donor area then use a local anesthesia both there and in the recipient area. Most doctors prepare the recipient sites with customized blades that match each follicular unit, these blades ranging in size from 0.75mm to 1.3mm (no one is punching holes anymore, unless it is to do a scalp biopsy). A team of technicians will dissect the donor strip using either microscopes or high definition cameras and monitors. Next, the follicles from the donor strip are inserted into the recipient site. Most doctors use a trichophytic closure technique that virtually eliminates scarring (it actually allow hair to grow through the donor scar).

The entire process is complex and not without bodily stress. There is a limit to the anesthetic that can be injected into your system as well as the number of grafts that can be cut. The procedure is also demanding for the physician; while cutting the graft the doctor will keep injecting saline solution into your scalp so that proper skin strength is maintained. He or she also has to be very careful when replanting the hair to make sure it grows in the right direction.

Self-Catered Wedding Receptions: Food Safety 101 Ten Tips From A Caterer

Keeping food safe is not difficult! Basically food safety is about common sense and a bit of food safety education. It is highly recommended that anyone who engages in food preparation, do a little homework about how to keep food safe.

Visit a couple of food safety websites. If you have questions… ASK! Do not ever be afraid to ask questions! Most of the food safety sites should have toll free hotlines.

The following list is not a complete list. However, this list includes 10 of the most common tips that I shared with my food preparation staff when I was in the catering and special event business.

1. Secure your hair. Tie it back. Cover it or at least spray it liberally with hairspray before you step into the kitchen. Make sure you don’t have any hair on your clothes, too! Use a lint brush before you go into the kitchen to start cooking. While loose hair is not necessarily a big food safety issue, it is very unappetizing in food!

2. Remove all rings and other jewelry from your hands. Wash your hands and lower arms with hot soapy water before, during and after preparing food. During food preparation you will need to wash your hands often. Just use common sense and remember to wash between tasks, if you cough, if you scratch yourself, etc.

3. Start every new session with an immaculate kitchen. Wash down your prep area and counter tops. Use a solution of 1 quart water to 3 teaspoons bleach. (Bleach in a kitchen can ruin nice clothes fast. Don’t wear your best clothes in the kitchen! There is nothing worse than finding tiny bleached dots or splotches of white on a favorite nonwhite garment. Believe me I have had this happen more times than I want to remember.)

4. Keep a supply of disposable food service gloves on hand. The choice to wear gloves is up to you. If you keep your hands spotless, you will not need to wear gloves, unless you want to do so. However, if you have any type of cuts or wounds on your hands or exposed arms – it is very important that the wounds be properly bandaged. If the wound is on your hand, you need to wear a glove on that hand. There is nothing more disgusting than finding a Band-Aid in food. Yuk.. you really don’t want to give new meaning to the term “cold cuts”!

5. If you are going to be cooking with raw meat, fish or poultry always keep the raw food on the bottom shelf of the refrigerator. Do you know the reason for this? The reason is that you do not want any raw juices to accidentally drip onto other food in the refrigerator.

6. The temperature of your refrigerator should always be below 40 degrees. Keep a thermometer in it and monitor it. When you use the refrigerators at your wedding reception venue… check the temperature. Make sure the refrigerators are working properly. Ask the venue staff at the reception site to check the temperature of the refrigerator for you in the days preceding your reception. Also ask the venue staff, very nicely, if they will make sure to have the refrigerator clean for you.

7. Perishable food needs to stay under refrigeration! Only take food out of the refrigerator as you need it in the different stages of preparation. As soon as you are done preparing food get it back into the refrigerator or freezer.

8. Wash, rinse, sanitize, and rinse cutting boards between steps. Use common sense!

9. Transport food in insulated coolers. Borrow or rent big coolers.

10. Leftover food should never be kept out of refrigeration for more than two hours. If in doubt, throw it out.

Again this is not an all inclusive list. Depending on the menu you choose for your reception, different precautions may need to be taken. As you decide your menu, think through the food safety logistics. For example, if you are having an outdoor reception during warm weather months you need to read up on food safety for picnics or tailgate parties. Follow those safety measures exactly! The amount of time that food can go unrefrigerated outside is only about one hour. After that hour, if the food is not chilled or iced down … dangerous bacteria can begin growing in the food. That is bad! If food that has not been properly refrigerated is consumed, it is possible that the person eating the food can become very, very sick. A person with a weakened immune system could even die.

If you are self-catering or semi-catering your wedding reception appoint someone trustworthy who will be vigilant about food safety!

If you are having your reception catered always ask the caterer to describe their food handling procedures to you.

Just because you are not a full-time licensed caterer – do not feel intimidated by the issue of food safety. Chances are the food that you prepare for your own wedding reception will be superior in taste and free of germs. You will be confident because you know your kitchen was spotless, your hands were clean, and your food did not sit out of refrigeration a minute longer than was necessary in the preparation process.

You might want to consider asking a family member, friend or hired assistant to help you with food safety issues. Contact one of the state or national food safety organizations and ask for their help, too.
They can offer you a wealth of information to help you to learn the do’s and don’ts of food safety.

Food safety is not difficult! Food safety does not take long to learn! Set aside an hour or two to educate yourself about food safety before you start preparing food for your wedding reception.

© 2006 Kathi Dameron, Kathi Dameron and Associates

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