What's on Karen's Plate? - Karen's Blog - Year of the Rooster

Are You Ready for the Year of the Rooster?

I know everyone celebrates New Year’s on January 1 of each year, but have you ever thought of mixing it up a bit by celebrating the New Year when the Chinese do? Every year around January or February, many parts of the world celebrate Chinese New Year or Lunar New Year. The date changes from year to year because this holiday is part of a lunisolar calendar based on lunar cycles and therefore different from the Gregorian calendar which we use on a daily basis. This year, the Year of the Rooster begins on January 28. But what does a Rooster mean? And how do you know which year of the Chinese zodiac are we in? Well, this website helps you figure it out, or you can check your birth Continue Reading

Why I Now Love Southwest Airlines

As you may know, I travel quite a bit. Mostly it’s for business. Because I’m a frequent traveler, I have apps on my smart phone for the airlines I frequent: United, American, Jet Blue, and Delta. I can check in and access my boarding passes via the app, and as the year progresses, I continue to check my mileage so I can qualify for “frequent flyer status.” Sadly, due to all the recent mergers, I cannot remember the last time I got upgraded. So, the only benefit of status is … Continue reading

My End of the Year Donation

At the end of each year, a lot of people make monetary donations to charitable organizations. Some make donations because they are passionate about the cause. Others do it because they are looking for an end of the year tax deduction. For me, personally, I am not motivated by the tax deduction—I’m always driven by the cause. As you know, I’m passionate about eliminating hunger, so I donate to food banks and organizations that support them. I’m also passionate about mentoring people (young people, women, business owners), so the way … Continue reading

My Favorite Things

At this time of year, I spend a lot of time going to the movies. My daughter Alex and I have had that tradition for many years. It’s like a marathon for us: How many awesome movies can we see between now and New Year’s? It seems that many great movies come out the last month of the year as the rush for the Golden Globes and Oscars begins. Last week I saw “Rogue One.” (I’m dating a Star Wars geek, so seeing “Rogue One” was mandatory.) Loved it! A … Continue reading

Volunteering During the Holidays

For many years, when my two daughters were younger and living at home with me, I wanted the three of us to spend Thanksgiving Day helping to feed the homeless or hungry. I remember calling multiple places to volunteer and I could not find a single place that was taking volunteers. (I’m guessing many people chose to do this during the holidays, so they didn’t have a need at that time.) I didn’t get too discouraged, but it has always been in the back of my mind to do this. … Continue reading