Monthly Archives: July 2012

Green essentials

No Comments 31 Jul 8:51 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Outdoor Sports and Camping, Playsets

There is strong Evidence of benefit from contact with nature.  Outdoor experiences provide proven benefits to our general health showing that green environments are in fact essential to human health, and especially to our childrens’ health and wellness. Interestingly, contact with nature actually promotes healthier social behavior reducing social dysfunction, alleviating stress, improving resilience, promoting optimal psychological function, even improving recovery from physical trauma and  reducing early mortality rates. Wow, I am so thankful I was lucky enough to grow up in the woods of the Mississippi Valley in Iowa – watching my older sister climbing huge oak trees.  We …

Recommended reading for parents

No Comments 8:26 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Playsets

“Outdoor Recreation, Health, and Wellness: Understanding and Enhancing the Relationship”  Washington DC: Resources for the Future.  Dobbey, G. (2009) This report is available at www.rff.org.documents/RFF-DP-09-21.pdf Health benefits of outdoor play has an important role in stress reduction.  Outdoor recreation also plays a very therapeutic role in benefiting children who tend toward obesity and attention-deficit, hyperactivity disorder.  This book examines childrens’ interconnection with nature and many variables that impact their outdoor play.  Different approaches were used in measuring physical activities as well as trend in park visitation as well as amounts of leisure time, availability of outdoor play space, safety, and …

Smoked Turkey

No Comments 30 Jul 8:03 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Outdoor Sports and Camping

Besides using one of the best BBQ smokers, there are a few basics necessary to smoke a turkey: A large pan An accurate meat thermometer Wood chips–some kind of fruit wood, such as apple or cherry, complements turkey very well, but hickory, pecan, and maple will be equally good It’s advised you choose a bird weighing no more than about 15 pounds–large turkeys take too long to heat all the way through. Prep:  Brining: although not an essential for smoking a turkey, soaking in brine before cooking gives the meat maximum flavor and juiciness. Rub the bird with oil or butter …

Memphis BBQ smoked ribs

No Comments 28 Jul 8:44 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Outdoor Sports and Camping

Ingredients for Smoked Rack of Ribs, Memphis style: 2 tablespoons paprika 1 tablespoon black pepper 1 1/2 teaspoons salt 1 1/2 teaspoons celery salt 1 teaspoon dry mustard 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon cumin 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper 1 pinch onion powder 1 tablespoon dark brown sugar 1 rack baby back ribs barbecue sauce (Your choice but we recommend Stubb’s Mopin Sauce BBQ Baste) Directions using one of the best BBQ smokers: 1 Mix all dry ingredients in a bowl. 2 Rub 2/3 of the mixture onto front and back of ribs. 3 Lightly brush on barbecue sauce. 4 …

Practice Putts

No Comments 27 Jul 8:14 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Golf Greens

Practice on a Putting Green This might be a hard tip to accomplish, but you may very well be pleased with how much it will help. Golf courses try their best to make practice putting greens as realistic an experience as possible, but there is nothing better than the real thing. Practice greens often can’t reproduce the same kind of real life scenario as real greens because they are usually located away from obstacles such as trees (which affect wind) that can affect your putting. The practice green at your local golf course is usually not at the top of a greenskeeper to-do list, so …

BBQ Basic short list to success

No Comments 26 Jul 8:49 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Outdoor Sports and Camping

Six Basics for Great Smoked BBQ Meat 1. Great Meat 2. Great Spices 3. Great Tools (food smoker, grill, tongs, thermometers, etc…) 4. Heat Control 5. Timing 6. Smoke Meat:  For Beef Choose “Prime” or “Choice” grades of beef  with marbling. You will get the wonderful flavor that our basic instincts crave! Spices:  There is a huge difference between the old,”$1 a bottle” spices, and high quality fresh spices.  However, there are some high quality “rubs” available at your favorite butcher’s. Tools:  We’ve all bought cheap, then paid for it in replacements and quality later. From the barbecue grill, meat …

Two Summer outdoor games

No Comments 8:29 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Playsets

Blind Snake Soaker.  Place several (toy) sprinklers attached to a garden hose in between a starting line and a finish line. Have the children try to run from the starting line to the finish line without getting wet. Have one of the kids control the water, turning it on and off at random. Award prizes to the kids who play the longest without getting wet. Frisbee Towers. Buy some of those mini Frisbees. Put them in a stack in the middle of your back yard. Have the kids divide the Frisbees evenly among themselves. The first player begins the activity …

Summer Smoked Glazed Chicken

No Comments 24 Jul 8:23 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Outdoor Sports and Camping

We recommend using one of the best BBQ smokers on the market for optimal results.  A special thank you  to  “http://www.food.com/recipe/”. Prep 1/2 cup olive oil 1/4 cup cajun seasoning, Mop 2 cups apple cider vinegar 2 cups water 2 tablespoons salt 2 tablespoons black pepper. Glaze 6 tablespoons butter with 2 tablespoons honey onto 8 lbs chicken Directions: 1 For the brine: Combine the first 10 ingredients, bring to a boil, then let cool. 2 Add maple extract and liquid smoke. 3 Rinse chicken and pat dry. 4 Brine chicken for at least 4 hours. Overnight is best. 5 …

Flop Fun

No Comments 8:07 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Golf Greens

How to Practice the “FLOP” The flop shot in golf requires a three-quarter backswing and a full finish. It works with any one of your wedges, and it is suggested that you practice this shot with each of them. Warning:  If you practice this shot with a real golf ball, a poor swing can produce potentially harmful results – especially risky when practiced at home in your backyard. However, if you use an “almostGOLF”  brand golf ball, you can practice the “Flop” shot in your own backyard with minimized risk. These ball-like “spheres” fly a third of the distance of real …

Summer Game: “Shark”

No Comments 23 Jul 8:20 am Author: Richard Category:Best Outdoor, Outdoor Sports and Camping, Playsets

It’s vitally important that your kids get outdoors and play, even if you have XBox Connect / 360. Here’s a simple game (yes it’s a type of “tag”) that gets kids outdoors and moving. One child is the Shark, the other kids are fish. The “fish” are“safe” while on a beach towel or while in their “dens” (ad lib it). But when the Shark calls out, “Fishie, fishie, cross my ocean”, all the fish have to make it to another den without getting tagged. If you’re tagged you’re a shark too. The game’s over when there are no fish left. …