7 Ways to Recycle your Halloween Pumpkins

Halloween is behind us and that leaves us all wondering what to do with all of those pumpkins that are hanging around! If you’re not interested in keeping your pumpkins intact, try recycling them one of these ways!

1. Scoop out the seeds and roast them in the over for a delicious snack.

2. Use them as serving bowls. Cut off the tops, remove the insides and place a bowl inside for a seasonal touch to your Thanksgiving.

3. Have enough serving bowls? Cut them and clean them the same way and stick your potted plants in them instead.

4. Cook with them! Make pumpkin butter or pumpkin chutney for your seasonal events.

5. Turn them into turkeys. If they haven’t been carved, glue some feather and eyes on your pumpkins for a fun, Thanksgiving craft.

6. Fill with birdseed for an all natural bird feeder.

7. Compost your pumpkins after cutting them up (make sure there is no paint or artificial objects on them if you do this!)

5 Ways to Save on Back to School Supplies

It’s back to school for many local towns so we wanted to share some money-saving tips! Buying notebooks, pens and folders for school doesn’t seem like much, but it can certainly add up! Before heading to your local office-supply store with your list, check out these tips!

1. Check out what you already have. If you have a home office or a supply closet at home, take a quick sweep and see how many items you may already have on hand before you buy them brand new.

2. Check out your local Dollar Tree. There’s no need to spend too much on certain items. Instead, spend only a dollar on lots of desk-essentials.

3. Read your local flyers. It’s the time of year for back to school items to be on sale. Read your local store flyers and see who is offering the best prices on items before heading to your “usual” store.

4. Stick to your list. Make a list of “must-haves,” (which is usually provided by your child’s teacher) and stick to it. There’s no need to buy unnecessary amounts of supplies.

5. Set a budget and stick to it. Give each of your children an amount they can spend and don’t go over. This is also a great lesson for them to learn how to budget!

How to Clean Your Couch

We wash our floors, our sinks and counter tops but we often forget about the couch! We sit on it every day and some of us let our pets lounge on it too. Here are 5 easy steps for cleaning your couch.

1. Use your vacuum hose/attachment to give the couch and pillows a once over. Don’t forget to flip the cushions so you can remove dust, allergens and pet hair from all surfaces.

2. If your couch has wooden parts (legs, arm rests) dust them off and use a furniture polish to wipe them clean.

3. Read the papers/tags that came with your sofa. They will explain what sort of fabric it is made out of and what cleaners are safe to use.

4. Clean with the proper cleaner. Focus on spots that have noticeable stains and wear. Let the couch dry.

5. Rent a shampooer and deep clean your sofa. Use the attachments to get in all the crevices of the cushions to ensure a deep clean. Let your couch dry.

What To Look For When Buying Produce

We all browse the produce aisle at the supermarket and squeeze a piece of fruit or hold a veggie in the air to inspect it, but do we really know what to look for? Here’s a guide to help you know what to look for when buying popular produce.

Oranges- Heavy with a firm, smooth texture

Grapes – Tender and plump; firmly attached to the stem

Bell Peppers – Thick, glossy skin and firm

Broccoli Crowns- Firm, deep green color with closed florets

Potatoes- Firm with a smooth texture and oval shape

Tomatoes- Plump with a rich, red color and cushiony to the touch

Onions- Dry, papery-smooth skin

7 Must Haves For Your First Apartment

There are obviously many things you have to purchase when you move into your first apartment, but we’ve compiled a list of 7 must-have items that you’ll need right away!

1. Trash can- When you’re moving into a new home you’ll be surprised how much trash you can accumulate while you’re getting settled!

2. Bedding- Whether or not you have a queen sized bed or you’re sleeping on the couch, you’ll certainly need a blanket and pillow when it’s time to rest!

3. Bathroom necessities- Besides your normal toiletries, you’ll need to make sure you have a shower curtain, soap, shampoo, towels and toilet tissue.

4. Plates & eating utensils- You might be ordering takeout while getting adjusted to your new home, but you’ll need plates and forks to have on hand.

5. A coffee pot and coffee – If you are a caffeine lover, you’ll need a way to get your fix while spending your days unpacking boxes.

6. Drinking glasses/ mugs – You’ll need mugs for your early morning cup of joe and glasses for water so you can stay hydrated while you’re hard at work!

7. Lamps- Let there be light! You’ll need to be able to see while you’re moving! Any rooms that don’t have overhead lighting will need lamps.

How to Clean Your Keurig Coffee Maker

Keurig coffee makers have certainly made our lives easier! They make a single cup in seconds and we no longer have to wait for hot coffee to perk before we can enjoy it. If you have a Keurig at home, do you clean it often? Do you know the proper way to clean it? Here are the steps to follow!

1.Disassemble the brewer. Open the cover of the brewer by lifting the handle and remove the K-Cup holder inside.

2. Wash the holder, drip tray, funnel and drip plate in the dishwasher. These parts are all dishwasher safe!

3. Clean the exit needle. The bottom and upper portions of the K-Cup holder both have exit needles with three holes. You can use a small, sharp object like a needle or paper clip to ensure there isn’t any leftover buildup inside.

4. Use hot water and soap to clean out the plastic water reservoir and cover in the sink. Make sure to get all of the soap out and then let it dry.

5. Use a sponge to wipe down the exterior of the machine to remove any dirt or dust that might have been floating around your kitchen.

6. Reassemble your Keurig and enjoy a hot cup of coffee in your freshly, cleaned machine!

How to Choose the Best Pumpkin for Carving

Tis the season for pumpkin carving and when it comes to picking the right pumpkin, there are steps you can take to make sure you pick a winner! Keep reading to find out what you should look for when you are searching at the pumpkin patch!

1. Pick it up and feel the weight. You’ll want to choose a pumpkin that feels heavy for it’s size.

2. Look at the coloring. Make sure there isn’t patches of different coloring on your pumpkin. You’ll want one that has a great orange color throughout.

3. Flip it upside down and push on the bottom with your thumb. If the pumpkin flexes or feels soft at all it isn’t fresh.

4. Feel around and check for any mold or soft spots that indicate it will spoil earlier than other pumpkins.

5. Look at the stem and make sure it looks solid. If it has a green tinge to it that means it was freshly harvested.

6. Feel the surface. You’ll want a pumpkin that has a wide, smooth surface on at least one side so you can properly carve your masterpiece with plenty of space!

5 Halloween Safety Tips

We’re only just in the beginning of October but the Halloween festivities are upon us! Here are 5 Halloween safety tips to help you and your family enjoy this spooky holiday in the best way possible.

1. Make sure your children are seen at night. Whether you are at a haunted house or just trick or treating, make sure your kids are either carrying flashlights or wearing reflectors on their clothing if they’ll be walking in the dark.

2. Stick with familiar neighborhoods. It’s best to go door to door in a neighborhood that you are comfortable in. You will most likely know the neighbors and you won’t risk getting lost.

3. Watch for welcoming signs and signals. If a house is dark and the lights are turned off, chances are the owners don’t want visitors on Halloween. Stick to the houses that are bright and friendly.

4. If you’re attending a local fair, make sure to decide on a meeting spot in case your group gets separated.

5. If candy or food handed out on Halloween or at parties you attend looks suspicious, throw it out! There’s no sense in risking it. If wrappers are partially open or torn or something just doesn’t look right toss it in the trash. There’s plenty more candy to be had!

5 Ways to Keep Your Home Free of Pet Hair

We love our furry friends but sometimes their fur and hair can get to be a burden! It covers the couches, our clothes and our carpets. Here are 5 ways to get your house pet-hair free in no time!

1. Cover your pet’s favorite spot with a blanket or cover up – especially if that favorite spot happens to be on the couch.

2. Use lint rollers on your clothes AND your pillows. They will pick up tiny hairs that can’t be seen by the naked eye.

3. When fur causes build up on your baseboards or hardwood floors, use dryer sheets to pick up the mess. They also smell great which is an added bonus!

4. Invest in a vacuum that specializes in pet hair cleanup. Some vacuums have filters that contain pet dander better than others. They also come with special attachments for furniture.

5. Groom your pets as often as possible. You don’t have to spend a fortune bringing them to the groomer either. You can brush them and trim them right at home to eliminate any fur that might fall!

5 Ways to Bring Fall into Your Home

Now that we’ve officially entered the autumn season it’s time to bring out the fall decor! Here are 5 ideas that will spruce up your apartment and give you that festive, fall feeling!

1. Create a festive centerpiece for your dining room – Add mini pumpkins and pine cones to a vase or decorating with fall-colored candles


2. Add mums to your porch or balcony – The orange, yellow and dark red colors of these plants will brighten up your outdoor space through the season


3. Add a festive wreath to your door Whether you are in a single family home or an apartment, adding a wreath to your front door is a great way to brighten up your entryway for your guests


4. Add a seasonal doormat to your entryway They may just be used to wipe your feet, but switching out your doormat each season is a great way to add some autumn flair.


5. Dress up your mantel Have a fireplace in your home? The mantel is a great place to add pumpkins, garland and other autumn pieces for extra color in your living room!