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Darla's Blog - 2013 Oklahoma holiday guide on where to go, what to grill, desserts, games, animal care, safety and more

by Darla Lindauer Modified: July 1, 2013 at 8:59 am •  Published: June 28, 2013

1. Metro Family

By: Brooke Barnett is the Social Media contact, but the site is maintained by a staff of people. Credit for this post will go to Staff.

What blog is about – Family life, travel, children, money tips, events and projects.

Featured post – 2013 Independence Day Fun Guide – “Our guide to Independence Day Fun includes a list of fireworks displays, festivals, parades and other family-friendly celebrations taking place across the metro.”

I am not sure how other states do Independence Day, but I think Oklahomans have them beat! I have traveled around little, but enough to know that Oklahomans do not wait for a holiday to be proud and friendly! I have always loved July 4th. Maybe it is just being with family and friends, being outside or the food. The fireworks are great, but I have a daughter who is sensitive to sounds and she does not do well with the noise. I bought a great pair of noise-reducing headphones that get us through the night at home away from the sounds. But, we do not need fireworks to have a great time. We will enjoy our Independence of being able to eat what we want, when we want, then go back on eating right the next week! Ha-haDarla Lindauer


2. Lil’ Luna {all things good}

By: Kristyn – “I don’t consider myself the most creative person in the world, but I LOVE making things, and I love sharing the ideas I’ve used or found with others.”

What blog is about – All things good, crafts, recipes, freebies.

Featured post – 30 Fourth of July Desserts – “In case you’re trying to prepare for the Fourth I wanted to share with you some great Red, White and Blue treats perfect for Independence Day.”

Yum! This is the most patriotic dessert site I have come across! I have so many favorites, but I think the one that stood out to me the most is the “Patriotic {cheesecake} Parfaits.” I am going to have to put a lazy “Darla” spin to it, though. Making things in my house can turn disastrous in about a second. My oldest daughter, who has Asperger’s, wants to help me with everything, just like any child, but she gets frustrated and then she decides what happens next, even if it is destroying all of it. So, I have a fix for that! I am going to go buy a couple of Sara Lee cheesecakes, which are about $6 a piece and get them semi-frozen so I can cut or crumble them. Then, my daughter can scoop the cheesecake and fruit layers in. I am so excited; It is going to be so easy and cute. I will save the cream on top for right when we eat them. I have to thank my mother for my creative mind when it comes to finding easier ways to deal with autism. My mother has the patience of a saint and the most creative mind I know! Happy Fourth of July dessert-making! – Darla Lindauer


3. Epicurious: For people who love to eat.

By: The site is managed by many contributors. The credit will go to Epicurious.

What blog is about – The ultimate food site for people who love to eat.

Featured post – Grilled Chicken Recipes

I featured burgers in my last post and some desserts in this one. I had to find some amazing chicken recipes as well. This looks so yummy! For all those planning on grilling over the holidays, this will be am amazing addition to the burger and dogs! I do not eat meat very much, but I do love my burgers, brats, jalapeno dogs, ribs, steak and regular hot dogs, but most of all, I love chicken. I can pass on lemon recipes, though. I am a BBQ or spicy chicken girl myself, and it has to be cooked well-done. Hope you find one you like!Darla Lindauer

4. SheKnows

By: The site is maintained by many staff members. Laura Williams, M.S.Ed. gets credit for this post.

What blog is about – “SheKnows aims to fuel the inspirations and aspirations of today’s modern women with relevant, approachable content to make her successful in everyday life.”

Featured post – 8 Fun outdoor games for kids – “Luring kids outside isn’t easy when so many electronic options beckon indoors.”

So you have your BBQ planned. You have some recipes to grill and yummy desserts to serve. Now you need some entertainment! Some of these are awesome for the hot forecast we are going to have! The first one I want to play is the hole in the bucket game. I might not put it on my head, but it is a great way to exercise, stay cool and have fun with the kids. Another great idea that is so much fun is a homemade slide and slip. Yes, it is backwards. Here is what you need. I already had all of this stuff, so it did not cost anything for me, but you might have a one-time cost. And, you can reuse all of the items each year and throughout the year for other things. Get 12 foam noodles for the pool — the ones that have the hole down the middle. Get a slide, preferably the one that is about 4 feet tall. You can find these at thrift stores sometimes. My mother did, and we have two of them. Also, get a long rope and a large roll of plastic sheeting. Put the rope through each noodle to make a very long rectangle, six down each side and one at each end, and cover it with the plastic sheeting, letting the sheeting run over about 2 feet on each side. Fill the middle of the plastic sheeting with water, and put the slide at one end. The child slides down the slide and keeps going the length of the 3-inch pool of water. When they get up, they walk on the sheeting on the outside to not get grass on their feet. Since my baby was smaller, I put up a small little pop-open tent at the far end of the pool, and she loved watching the kids slide to her as she played out of the sun with toys. Have fun!Darla Lindauer


5. wikiHow to do anything

By: The site is managed by many contributors; This post says it has been edited by Martyn P, Flickety, YL, Dachshundluver99 and 17 others.

What blog is about – How to do anything

Featured post – How to Look After Pets During Fireworks – “Here are the ways to keep your pet safe and cared for during fireworks.”

Sometimes the fun and food and spectacular show of fireworks make us forget things that are important — our animals. This list is the best one I could find. I did not realize they gave sedatives to animals to calm them down. I am not sure how I feel about that. Fireworks are illegal in the city limits where most animals are regular house pets, but they are legal outside the city limits where all types of animals can be found. So, do you sedate your whole herd of cattle, or do you just let them freak out? It is amazing how much I learn when I read about something. I hope this list helps those who have not considered this before. Be safe!Darla Lindauer


6. The National Council On Firework Safety

By: The site is managed by the staff. The contacts on this post are Ralph Apel and Nancy Blogin.

What blog is about – Firework safety

Featured post – July 4th Fireworks Safety Starts with Common Sense Tips - ”Fireworks-related accidents do occur each year, however, most could be eliminated if some basic safety steps had been taken.”

I think the title says it the best: common sense will prevent accidents. However, there are some instances where true accidents can happen. I was close to one of those when I was about 22 years old. We always did a huge fireworks show at my house in Choctaw. One year, one of the fireworks that shoots up in the air was lit and, although all precautions had been taken, Mother Nature decided to send a gust of wind and knock it over. When it went off, it came flying right at me. I was at least 50 feet away, but it came within an inch from hitting my side at the waist, flew past me, past two containers of gasoline in the garage and hit the wall. I never knew it was coming. I was quite scared after the fact, though. So, although these tips are common sense, there are extra precautions to take as well. Make sure it is a smooth, flat, even surface, and build a stabilizer to prevent it from falling over. Water the lawn for a few hours around the area, and have as many water hoses ready to go with the water turned on already. Put one of those sprayers on the end you can turn on and off right there so you do not need to go to the main valve. Another thing to remind people if they have asthma issues: Bring your emergency inhaler! And shoot fireworks far enough away that debris does not come down on your guests or your roof. Know your children. Don’t make them watch and listen to fireworks if they are scared. Prepare them beforehand a little with those little poppers or the mini confetti poppers, and see how they do. If needed, get the special headsets to cut the noise for them, and plan some inside games for them during this time. Or, get a headset to plug into a computer and put in their favorite movie with a favorite dessert and reassure them. The holiday is not just for those who like the noise. It is freedom for everyone, so let them have fun, too. That is my addition to the safety rules. Have a wonderful safe Independence Day!– Darla Lindauer


7. POPSUGAR Fitness

By: Anne Renderer – “Anna Renderer Fitness is a weight loss training program that challenges each individual’s ability to push, pull, lift, lower, and rotate the body utilizing bodyweight and light resistance equipment at various levels of difficulty.”

What blog is about – Fitness

Featured post – Bikini Prep: 10-Minute Total-Body Workout – “Waste no gym time with this total-body workout. It keeps the heart rate up while toning you from head to toe.”

After the holiday, you will need a way to work off those extra pounds from all the food, but not a lot of time to do it. I found this 10-minute workout and tested it for you. You know how when you set your mind to being more healthy and getting in better shape and in your mind you think you can move a mountain? Well, I hope you can, because you are going to need some serious stamina to do this workout as a beginner! Having some heart medication might be useful, too! It was hard! I could not keep up. Thank goodness for fast forward. I think my workout was more like 5 minutes. I am going to keep trying it, though, until I get it! Here is a tip that helped me lose 3 pounds this past week. For those who sit at work a lot, go get some light ankle weights and wear them around the office and make yourself get up and walk just a little more. If there are any stairs, take them if you can. Stay tuned in for next week. I will have Yoga poses for headaches I am going to attempt. Ha-haDarla Lindauer


Compiled by Darla Lindauer. If you would like your or someone else’s blog to be considered for this column, email

by Darla Lindauer
Data Team Manager
Darla Lindauer, Data Team Manager of the News and Information Center, has been with OPUBCO Communications Group for six years. During this time, she has been successful in developing and implementing multiple strategic operations leading to a...
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