Categories
COVID-19 Family

Working, Teaching, & Parenting…Oh My!

With Gwinnett’s decision to have digital learning for a season, many parents are continuing to face the challenge of working and teaching. Many of you already balance working from our space and from home, but now there’s another factor to think about. Although we don’t have the answers, we found a source to answer some of your questions or to help put you a little more at ease! Read the article below to join the back-to-school conversation.

“4 Things Parents Can Expect from Their Kids When They Go Back to School” | Maressa Brown, Aug. 2020

 

Categories
Event

Thank Gin it’s Virtual: 5 Cocktail Recipes for Virtual Events

Sometimes, virtual events/meetings are made fun with a cocktail or two! Shake up your next virtual event by rounding up your friends and hosting a virtual mixer they won’t forget!

Blackberry Mojito 

 Ingredients:

  • – 2 oz. white rum
  • – 1/2 oz. lime juice (squeezed fresh)
  • – 1 tsp. superfine sugar
  • – 3 mint leaves
  • – ½ cup blackberries
  • – club soda or seltzer

Directions:

  • – In a small bowl, muddle blackberries. Set aside.
  • – Place mint leaves in the bottom of the glasses. Divide and spoon blackberry mixture on top. Add rum, sugar, and lime juice and stir to combine. Top with crushed ice.
  • – Add club soda and garnish with mint leaves and more blackberries.

Rosemary Gin Fizz 

Ingredients: 

For the Rosemary simple syrup–

  • – 1 c. water 
  • – 1 c. granulated sugar
  • – 3 sprigs fresh rosemary

For the drink–

  • – 2 oz. gin
  • – 1 oz. freshly squeezed lemon juice
  • – 1 oz. rosemary simple syrup
  • – 1 large egg white
  • – Ice
  • – 2 oz. seltzer
  • – Lemon round, for garnish
  • – Rosemary, for garnish

Directions:

  • – Make rosemary simple syrup: In a small saucepan over medium heat, combine water, sugar, and rosemary. Bring to a boil and stir until all sugar is dissolved, pressing rosemary against the bottom of the pot with a wooden spoon to release its oils. Let cool to room temperature, then strain into an airtight container and refrigerate until ready to use.
  • – Make drink: Combine gin, lemon juice, simple syrup, and egg white in a cocktail shaker. Shake for 10 to 15 seconds to combine all ingredients. Fill shaker with ice and shake 10 to 15 seconds more, or until chilled.
  • – Strain into serving glass, top with seltzer, and garnish with lemon and rosemary.

 

Frozen Sangria Margarita 

Ingredients:

For the Sangria swirl– 

  • – 1 c. red wine
  • – Juice of 1 orange
  • – Juice of 1 lime
  • – 2 c. ice

For the Margarita Swirl–

  • – 1 can frozen limeade concentrate
  • – 2 shots tequila
  • – 2 c. ice

Directions:

  • – Blend sangria mixture. Transfer mixture to the freezer while you blend margarita mixture.
  • – Rinse blender and blend margarita mixture.
  • – On a small plate combine sugar and salt. Run a wedge of lime around the rim of a glass and dip in sugar and salt. Alternate layers of sangria and margarita.
  • – Garnish with lime and serve.

Pomegranate Grapefruit Frose 

Ingredients: 

  • – 1 ounce pomegranate vodka (Van Gogh)
  • – 3 ounces rosé wine
  • – 1 ounce grapefruit juice (ruby red)
  • – 1/4 ounce lemon juice (fresh)
  • – 1/4 ounce simple syrup
  • – 1 cup ice
  • – Garnish: mint or thyme sprig
  • – Garnish: strawberry slice

Directions:

  • – Gather all the ingredients and pour the liquids into a blender and quickly blend them together. Add the ice and blend until smooth. Pour into a chilled cocktail or margarita glass. Garnish with a sprig of mint or thyme and a slice of strawberry.
  • – Serve and enjoy!

Indian Summer Bourbon Cocktail 

Ingredients: 

  • – 2 ounces good bourbon
  • – 1/4 ounce limoncello
  • – 1/2 ounce fresh lemon juice
  • – 1 tablespoon apricot jam heaping
  • – 8-12 fresh sage leaves

Directions:

  • – Place all ingredients in a cocktail shaker and fill the shaker with ice. Cover and shake vigorously 12-15 times. Fill a small tumbler with ice and double-strain into the cocktail into the glass.
  • – Garnish with a fresh sage leaf.

 

Categories
Family

Summer Events with Social Distancing in Mind

Written by Skyy DeAngelo

Summer is on the horizon! As COVID restrictions begin to lift, we can press play on our summer gatherings and begin enjoying time with our community without Zoom–thank goodness! However, it’s important we still maintain a sense of caution when gathering together with those we care for. Here are a few socially distanced party ideas to enjoy while keeping safety in mind, but without compromising on fun! 

  •  > Flower Arranging Party: Flowers are an integral part of life. They lift the spirit and improve the overall mood on any given day. But what’s even more therapeutic than looking at flowers, is playing with flowers! You don’t have to have an excuse to ever play with flowers, but if you are hosting a bridal shower, baby shower, or even a birthday party consider adding this as an entertainment piece. Find a flower expert in your local area and gather a small group of your gals for an afternoon of flower arranging! You’ll be able to share your stories and experiences as you create something beautiful. Find an open, shaded, outdoor space where you can host your party. If you decide to have it at a venue or inside your home, be mindful of the number of guests you invite and where everyone will be sitting. After you complete your gorgeous arrangements, find the perfect place for them in your home, or gift them to bring a smile to someone’s face. Flowers By Yona hosts fantastic Flower Arranging parties, providing all of the essentials needed for you to create beautiful arrangements through the art of storytelling.

 

  • > Paint Party: Replace your computer screen with a canvas and release your inner artist! A socially distanced paint party can be enjoyed in the comforts of your home with friends or the kiddos. Transform the largest space in your home into an art studio where guests can spend time creating beautiful masterpieces. Paint With a Twist has Twist at Home Kits that can be ordered and picked up. Included in the kit is a canvas, all the paint colors needed to create your selected masterpiece, paint brushes (for keeps!), other essentials, and written instructions along with a video link to follow along with your instructor to complete your painting.

 

  • > Pop-Up Pool Party: Bummed you’re having to spend your summer away from the poolside? Well, having a pool party isn’t completely out of the question! Throw a backyard pool party with giant inflatables, cocktails (or juice boxes), and some summer tunes. Minnidip has a stylish line of adult-friendly kiddie pools! Space out a few of these in your backyard for a pop-up pool party to keep yourself and others cooled off and entertained this summer. Add a couple of loungers for those who want to soak in the sun, but don’t forget to bring out the Super Soakers and water balloons for a contactless game of tag! No pool party is complete without burgers and hot dogs on the grill.

 

Categories
Family

Zoom Trivia Nights

As we are still encouraging and practicing social distance, it’s important we find new ways to stay connected, socialized, and entertained. Which means, all your trivia and game nights do not have to come to an end!

Here’s a complete guide to hosting a fun and engaging Zoom Trivia Night with friends, family, or coworkers:

Heads Up! – Have all participants download Heads Up on either their Apple or Android Devices. Allow players to choose from the various decks, as each deck is based on a specific topic.The game will display a word or phrase on your phone that you place on your forehead for everyone to see.  Don’t forget to select the “Hide Self View” option in Zoom so that you aren’t seeing the answers on your phone.The other players must try and convey to you what is on the phone, without saying the actual word or phrase. Tilt your phone down for correct answers, and tilt up to pass!

Kahoot! – Create a free personal account on Kahoot! and choose from a large selection of Trivia topics that are fun and educational. This game system is perfect for school age kids, as its bright colors and great topics encourage learning and engagement. You also have the option of creating your own questions!

Trivia Bingo – Head over to Sporcle where you can get a classic game of BINGO going, as you test your knowledge on Pop Culture. You can start a personal room and share your unique link with friends to play together over Zoom.

DIY Trivia  –  Completely build your Trivia Game your way! Trivia Maker allows you to choose your grid, color, and questions. You’ll be running your own game show in no time for the enjoyment of all your attendees.

Jeopardy – Jeopardy Lab has Jeopardy games for all ages and difficulty levels. You also have the option of creating your own board! Divide into 2 teams, allowing each person a shot at answering the Jeopardy questions. Make sure you utilize the breakout room option on Zoom to chat within your team if you need help with the answer to a question. For the full game show experience, set your virtual stage on Zoom Backgrounds to recreate the set of Jeopardy.

Family Feud – This is a family favorite trivia game show! Designate your host and choose your teams. To make a clear distinction as to who’s on which team, have everyone on the teams wear the same color, just like they do on the show! Simply download the game on your device, and share your screen on Zoom.

How to set your game up on Zoom

Now that you’ve selected your game, follow this simple guide to start a trivia game in a Zoom meeting:

Step 1: After you’ve chosen your trivia game of choice, make sure you understand it for yourself and that those you’re playing with will enjoy the one you’ve selected!

Step 2: Create a meeting on Zoom, and send the link to participants, along with the game you’ll be playing and its instructions. If you want to jazz up your virtual event, head over to evite to create your invitation. You can select the option to make this a virtual event, and include your zoom link there!

Remember, if your game lasts for more than 40 minutes, you will need to start a new meeting. Follow this link to upgrade your zoom account to continue the same meeting uninterrupted. Good planning will help!

Step 3:  Plan your game well so your fun will start without delay! Determine who your participants are, and who will host the game (if required), etc. Be sure that everyone has the items needed in order to play the game before getting started! Providing a list with all of the needed items will be very helpful for all the participants. Once everyone has joined your meeting and is ready, explain the game to everyone and begin!

Step 4: If the game requires screen sharing, Click the ‘Share screen’ option at the bottom of your Zoom meeting’s screen. You’ll then see a pop-up asking you which window you would like to share. Select the browser on which the game is currently running. Or, if you need a drawing board for keeping scores, drawing, or writing a trivia question, you can choose the whiteboard option after clicking the ‘Share Screen’ button.

Step 5: Have a blast! By selecting the record button on your dashboard in the beginning of the game, you can look back on the success of your trivia night. It’s a great way to capture all of the laughs and memories that you will make throughout the night!

 

Categories
Family

Quarantine Fun: DIY Movie Projector

As the weather begins to warm up and the days get longer, you’ll have more time to spend enjoying the outdoors with family and friends. Now’s the time to begin planning your backyard outings. Create a backyard movie theater for outdoor entertainment this summer! This guide will show you in 5 easy steps how to get started in creating your own movie projector!

Materials needed for your DIY Projector:
  • – Shoe box 
  • – Magnifying Glass that is 5x magnification (NOTE: When purchasing your magnifying glass be sure it does not contain a smaller lens inside. This will distort your picture)
  • – Pen/Marker
  • – Velcro strips (These can be found on Walmart, Amazon, or Home Depot
  • – Box Cutter
  • – Black Tape
  • – Black Paint 
  • – Smartphone 

 

STEP I: 

You’ll start by taking the magnifying glass out of the frame. Once that’s out, place the glass on one end of the box and trace a circle with your pen or marker; making sure that the circle gets traced on part of the lid as well. With your box cutter, carefully cut the circle out. 

STEP 2: 

Paint the inside of the box black, and allow it to dry! 

STEP 3: 

Once your paint is dry, you’ll take the lens and securely fit it inside the circle you’ve previously cut. You’ll then take your black tape and use it to secure the lens around the edges so that it is nice and snug, making sure there are no gaps. 

STEP 4: 

On the back of your smartphone, you’ll attach two velcro strips. Inside the back of the box, you’ll attach two more velcro strips. These will help your phone stay sturdy and in place when you put your phone inside the box.

STEP 5:

Before placing your phone inside the box, be sure to lock the screen orientation and insert it with the picture displayed upside down. The magnifying glass will flip the image and project it on whatever surface you play it on! 

 

A perfect movie night isn’t complete without the essentials! Make sure you have your snacks, drinks, and blankets to get ready for a summer full of fun spent under the stars; enjoying your favorite movies with the ones you love!

Categories
Family Uncategorized

5 Recipes to Enjoy Cinco de Mayo + Taco Tuesday

Written by Skyy DeAngelo

While we’d all love to be at our neighborhood Cantinas on Cinco De Mayo, enjoying some of our favorite tacos, we’ll all have to celebrate a little bit differently this year. You can still spend time with the ones you love while trying your hand at perfecting these showstopper taco recipes.

Serve up your tacos on some colorful dishware for the occasion, and wash them down with Mexican Cola or a party pack of Jarritos!

Hawaiian Pineapple Shrimp Tacos With Creamy Jalapeño Sauce

These Hawaiian inspired shrimp tacos will take your taste buds to the next level. Packed with sweet, tangy, and spicy flavors and topped with a creamy jalapeño sauce. 

Jackfruit Carnitas Tacos

These vegan tacos will not disappoint. The shredded jackfruit mimics shredded pork in the beloved carnitas taco. But you won’t miss the meat after chowing down on these flavorful tacos! 

Steak Korean Tacos with Asian Pear Slaw 

If you’re a fan of Beef Bulgogi, you will love these Korean Beef BBQ Tacos! Loaded with a crisp Asian Pear Mango Slaw and drizzled with a homemade taco sauce, what’s not to love?

Baja Fish Taco 

The Baja Fish Taco is your twist on a classic fish taco. The flavorful blend of crispy, crunchy, and spicy will make this taco a new favorite.

Honey Chipotle Chicken Tacos

The honey chipotle chicken is definitely the star of the show, but what really takes these to the next level is the BLT SLAW. Topped and finished with a refreshing cilantro, you won’t be disappointed!

 

Complete your spread by serving your street tacos with these tasty sides 

  1. Street Corn Salad
  2. Avocado and Tomatillo Green Chile Salsa + Baked Flour Tortilla Chips
  3. Churros with Chocolate & Espresso Sauce 

 

Categories
COVID-19

Supporting Small Businesses in the Midst of Covid-19

Written by Skyy DeAngelo

As we have all been affected by COVID -19, it is important to maintain a sense of community through supporting and uplifting our local community of small businesses. 

Within the first couple weeks of the pandemic, people went into a position of fear and fending for themselves. But as more information was given on the situation, we have been able to shift from fear to compassion. We have been reminded of how important kindness and community are to easing anxiety during this crisis. 

If we are all in this together, then we are to support each other and the businesses we pour ourselves into. A business isn’t just an entity, it is made up of families, dreams, and goals with the hope of making an aspect of another person’s life easier and full of joy. 

In this post, we are featuring some of Cornerstone’s members, what they offer, and how we can show our support as a workplace community:

 

OBRIA MEDICAL CLINICS

Obria is known for their compassionate and comprehensive healthcare. As we know, many families have suffered through this pandemic financially. As a result, Obria is currently providing pregnancy testing and ultrasounds at no charge, and their well-woman care visits are very low cost.

Obria serves many new mothers and currently has an Amazon baby registry for them. To support this organization, you can follow this link to their baby registry to add items in the Baby Boutique for expecting mothers. Their greatest need is diapers size 5 & 6 and baby boy clothing.

They are also starting a virtual baby bottle campaign to raise money to support current costs of remaining open. Individuals and organizations will have the opportunity to create their own fundraising page and fill their virtual baby bottle with money. 

To maintain the safety of their operation, disinfecting their surfaces is of utmost importance. If you are a business/organization/individual who has a resource to get hand sanitizer or Lysol spray, Obria Medical Clinic would greatly appreciate it!

Website: www.obria.org/locations/lawrenceville-ga/

Phone: call/text 770-338-1622 to set up your next appointment 

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/obriamedicalclinicgwinnett/

 

UPPER90

The team at UPPER90 continues their efforts to empower children, on and off the field by being a support to them and their families during this health crisis.

In the midst of COVID-19, Jorge and his team at UPPER90 are currently providing weekly care packages that include food, essential items, and notes of encouragement to uplift those they are serving. 

You can show your support of UPPER90’s mission to help the community they love, by partnering or contributing to the families in their program. Follow the link for additional information and directions as to how you can help. https://www.upper90goal.org/covid-19help.

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/UPPER90GOL/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/upper90gol/tagged/

 

Here are a few more ways you can support Obria, UPPER90, and other members of the Cornerstone Community:

  1. Show some love by writing reviews if you have used their services. Using platforms such as Facebook, Google and Yelp! will help their business immensely. 
  2. Amplify their business using the most valuable avenue of advertising: word of mouth! Even if you do not have a need for their services, you may know someone who does. Share their services and information on your social media, that way people can find them and any promotions or special offers they may have.
  3. A simple thank you goes a long way. Take a moment to send a thank you note or an email acknowledging and thanking the businesses and organizations in your community for their diligent work. 

 

What are some practical ways your business can be supported during COVID-19?

 

Categories
COVID-19

Coming Together at a Distance

It is no secret that Covid-19 is affecting everyone, in many different ways. Everything is slower if it hasn’t already come to a screeching halt. We are all a little stressed, worried, and anxious about what the next few weeks will hold–not to mention how this will play a part in our economy and lives for the years to come. We are all living through something right now that no one alive has ever witnessed before.

For the most part, this pandemic is out of our control. However there are a few things that are in our control that could help in doing our part.

  • – Help others, without contact. This one is as helpful for you as it is for someone else. When you get lost in thought and start to let the fear and uncertainty sink in…distract yourself. Instead of asking yourself a million questions that you don’t have the answer to, ask yourself, “how can I help someone else today?” We have seen this done in so many ways but for 
    • > Listen to the recommended protocols – the best way we can do our part is to stop the chain. We could prevent the spread to our family friends, and anyone else we come in contact with by simply not coming in contact. If everyone would take the initiative to practice social distancing and maintaining a sanitized environment, everything would slow down or come to the end much quicker.
    • > Helping others could be something as simple as dropping off a gallon of milk or pack of toilet paper on the front porch. Next time you place a grocery order, reach out to a neighbor or something that can’t leave the house and see if you can pick up an item or two for them.
    • >Helping others right now also goes farther than tangible goods. Social distancing has taken a toll on people emotionally. Simply reaching out to someone who has been isolated could change their whole day. Give them a call, FaceTime them so they can see your face and you can see theirs. Make plans for something you can do together when this is all over.
    • > My daughter’s preschool is “adopting the elderly.” I love this idea. They have a list of senior citizens in the community that will not have face to face interactions with others. So to do something small to brighten their day, and keep the little ones entertained for a short period of time, they have decided to have the students color pictures, write letters and do something simple to bring a smile to their face.

 

During these times, helping others looks different than it ever has. But there is nothing more encouraging than seeing a world in panic and finding the few that calm the storm with kindness. Always look to see the good, and work hard to be the good. How we respond, how we come together during a crisis, will define our outcome.

 

Categories
Family

Social Distancing but Make it Fun

2020 has been what we all expected. With the devastating fires in Australia, the tornado that destroyed Nashville, and now COVID-19 crippling most of the world. It feels like we can’t catch a break. At a time where we all need to feel a sense of community and support, we are being told to stay home and distance ourselves from others. While this is what the CDC recommends (and is absolutely for the best), it isn’t easy. It’s been less than a week, the stir-crazy is sinking in, and the wilder the kids get the quicker your patience runs out! Before you absolutely lose your mind and lock the kids in the backyard, check out a few of these fun things our team has been implementing in our homes. We hope they are helpful to you as well! 

  • – Connect with nature: Now that it’s finally stopped raining, take advantage of feeling the sunshine on your face! And just because you’re social distancing from other humans, doesn’t mean that you can’t go outside. Go for a walk around the neighborhood with the kids and dogs, break out the soccer ball and run around the backyard, even just take a drive with the windows down. Vitamin D will do you some good! 
  • – Add some fun to your todo list: We are all working from home, but honestly, many of us have pretty empty todo lists. Now is your time to try something you’ve always wanted! Whether that is teaching your kids how to do the cupid shuffle, or working on that puzzle that’s been sitting halfway finished for 3 months, make sure you add some fun to your day. Laughter and joy is what’s holding most of us together when it feels like everything else is falling apart around us! 
  • – Dance the blues away: Like I mentioned earlier, teaching the kids the cupid shuffle is a fun way to break the day up, but also you have to get up and move too! One of my favorite Instagram families ‘The Boss Family’ (Stephen is the DJ on Ellen Degeneres talk show) are live streaming dance workouts throughout the day to get you moving, get the blood flowing, and bring some smiles into your day! You can check them out by searching for @Allisonholker or @sir_twitch_alot
  • – Be Productive: This might not bring a whole lot of fun in the moment, but once it’s done you’re going to be so relieved! How often do you get 2 weeks at home without having a sick kid or having to use PTO? Use this time to tackle the coat closet that’s been collecting junk for the past 2 years or finally do the kid-friendly scie! You have extra time, don’t let it go to waste by binge watching Friends for the 24th time (we are NOT judging you for this!!). Use this time wisely, don’t take it for granted! 

 

We’re here for you during this time–whether it’s to video chat so you can have ‘adult conversation’ or if it’s to give you some ideas to help break the day up. Just know, The Cornerstone Team has your back! We look forward to seeing you all back at Cornerstone in a few weeks once the Coronavirus has run its course and our community is back on its feet! Stay safe, clean & healthy, Coworkers!

CORNERSTONE CLOSED: Thanksgiving Break

Cornerstone will be closed Thursday November 28th and Friday November 29th.

The building will be closed during regular business hours. If you are a Platinum or Resident Level member, you will still have access to the building during this time.

We wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving with your loved ones.

“Thanksgiving isn’t just a day. It’s a way we can live our lives everyday.”