10 Cooking Hacks to Save You Time in the Kitchen

Do you hate cooking at home and find yourself ordering out more often than you should? Start ditching the delivery and cut down time in the kitchen with these awesome tips and hacks.

 

1 – Like breakfast sandwiches but don’t want to make one every morning? You can poach a dozen eggs at once using a muffin tin. Refrigerate/freeze the eggs and pull one out to reheat on your toast each morning.

 

2 – Fast forward your fruit ripening by keeping your fruits in a paper bag.

 

3 – Making mashed potatoes? Don’t waste time peeling the skin. Instead, boil them with the skin on and it will fall off in the water. Better yet, mash them with the skins on for a more textured mash potato dish.

 

4 – Use cooking spray to coat your measuring cups. This will help keep foods from sticking to them when baking.

 

5 – Having leftover pizza? Reheat it in a skillet on your stove top rather than the oven to save time.

 

6 – Love a morning smoothie? Put your fruit and veggies into freezer bags. Put one in the fridge each night to throw into the blender the next morning.

 

7 – Put a piece of white bread in your cookie jar to keep your cookies from getting hard and eventually needing to be tossed in the trash.

 

8 – Dice up a bunch of vegetables and store them in freezer bags. These are great to use as soup starters. You can toss the pre-cut veggies in your crockpot and add your desired broth.

 

9 – Having a birthday party? Pre-scoop your ice cream and put them on cupcake liners in a muffin tin. Pull one out for each plate at cake time.

 

10 – Need to soften butter on the counter? Cut it into tablespoon sizes .The smaller pieces will soften a whole lot faster than the whole stick.

5 Ways to Go Greener at Home

Earth Day is approaching and it’s always a great time to start evaluating how we are treating our environment. There are plenty of ways you can go greener at home beyond the classic “reduce, reuse recycle.”

 

1 – Switch the lightbulbs in your lamps to energy efficient light bulbs. When shopping at your local hardware store just look for the “energy star” label on the package. While we’re talking about lamps…make sure to always turn yours off when you’re leaving a room.

 

2 – Use more reusable bags! These are not just for grocery shopping. Start thinking about packing your lunch in a reusable bag and bringing your bags to department stores for shopping as well.

 

3 – Plant a vegetable garden. Don’t have a lot of space? Many vegetables can grow in containers that you can put on your patio or balcony.

 

4 – Avoid drinking out of plastic water bottles. Purchase a reusable bottle to eliminate the amount of plastic water bottles you are using each week.

 

5 – Wash more things in cold water than hot. Washing clothes and dishes in colder water is much more energy efficient.

5 Virtual Valentine Gift Ideas

It may not be possible to safely deliver chocolates and flowers this Valentine’s Day but that doesn’t mean you can’t deliver something special! Check out these great ideas for virtual Valentine’s Day gifts you can share with your loved ones.

 

1 – Make a photo montage video set to music. Share the link to the video on Sunday for your Valentine to enjoy

2 – Send an e-card. There are plenty of websites (like e-cards.com) that allow you to create your own virtual Valentine’s Day card rather than buying one at a drug store!

3 – Create a special Valentine’s Day playlist and share virtually with your Valentine.

4 – Have someone else do the delivering! Use apps like DoorDash or Uber Eats to have your Valentine’s favorite meal delivered to them this Sunday.

5 – Want someone else to deliver the words? Check out Cameo.com to have your Valentine’s favorite celebrity deliver a special greeting!

How to Host a Virtual Super Bowl Party

We’re all getting really good at finding creative ways to be together these days – including during the Super Bowl! We may be used to having a big, loud party with family and friends to root for our favorite teams. This year you can still have fun with some of these tips!

1 – Virtual Super Bowl Squares – Setup some virtual squares with friends and make your own contest using Super Bowl Pool Site!

2 – FaceTime or Zoom – Meet with your friends over the web whether it’s for the first quarter or the whole game. Joining in and cheering together will make you feel like you’re together even if you’re not. Test out your technology ahead of time to avoid any difficulties.

3 – Choose the Same Menu – Just because you can’t be together doesn’t mean you can’t all enjoy nachos, wings and your favorite beverages at the same time. Create a super bowl menu to all enjoy virtually.

4 – Make Sure to Show Team Spirit – Wear your favorite gear from your favorite team and give an award for the best getup!

5 – Play Some Games – Track your favorite commercials and compare with friends. Give out a virtual award for the best commercial! Create some NFL trivia to play while you’re waiting for the game to start. Feel like singing? Do your best virtual reenactment of the halftime show and share with friends!

20 Items for Your 2021 Bucket List

 

2020 taught us a lot! We learned that making plans in the new year can be hard when there is a lot of uncertainty. Even though your traveling, parties or events may be cancelled or postponed, there are still plenty of things you can do in 2021! Check out our ideas for your 2021 bucket list – how many items will you check off this year?

1 – Take time to meditate each day

2 – Eat healthier

3 – Exercise daily (you don’t need a gym to get at least 30 minutes of exercise in each day to stay healthy!)

4 – Complete at least one act of kindness each month

5 – Read that book you started a while ago but haven’t finished

6 – Organize your apartment/house

7 – Send cards to friends in the mail for no reason other than to just say “hi”

8 – Do a puzzle

9 – Keep a journal

10 – Start a blog

11 – Learn to cook or bake

12 – Drink more water (download an app on your phone to track your ounces each day)

13 – Take a social media break

14 – Get more sleep (go to bed earlier to get extra Z’s)

15 – Watch some classic movies you still have never seen

16 – It’s hard to smile at strangers with a mask on, but you can still wave to say hello & brighten someone’s day

17 – Start a pay it forward chain (pay for someone’s coffee or lunch)’

18 – Complete a DIY project you pinned on Pinterest a while ago

19 – Buy or pick flowers to keep in your home

20 – Remember to smile and breathe

3 Delicious Holiday Cookie Recipes

Whether you like to decorate sugar cookies or prefer gingerbread men we have the perfect recipes to get you started! The snow is going to fall this weekend so head to the market, pick up some supplies and start baking!

 

1 – Gingerbread Men Recipe Courtesy of Sally’s Baking Addiction

These smell delicious while baking and are even more fun to decorate! Add some hair, bow ties or buttons…whatever your gingerbread heart desires!

Courtesy of sallysbakingaddiction.com

 

2 – The Perfect Snickerdoodles Courtesy of Cookies & Cups

If you like your snickerdoodles soft and chewy then you’ve come to the right place! These cookies are easy to make and full of flavor.

Courtesy of Cookiesandcups.com

 

3 – Soft Christmas Cut Out Sugar Cookies Courtesy of Live Well Bake Often

Fun to decorate and perfect for the holiday season! These sugar cookies have an icing recipe that is also easy to make and tasty to eat.

Courtesy of livewellbakeoften.com

3 Thanksgiving Games to Play With Family

Whether you are together with family or celebrating via Zoom, there are fun ways you can celebrate turkey day this year! Try one of these fun games with your family and maybe you’ll create a new tradition for years to come.

 

1 – A Thanksgiving Scavenger Hunt – Get the family searching both inside and outside for a list of items and have a whole lot of fun while you search!

courtesy of confessionsofparenting.com

 

2 – Color the table! Ditch the standard table cloth and opt for one you can color. Buy one at your local party store or create your own with craft paper and a sharpie.

courtesy of amazon.com

 

3 – Act it out! You don’t have to be face to face with your family to play Thanksgiving charades. Try these free printable cards from readwritemom.com!

courtesy of readwritemom.com

5 Festive Halloween Treats to Make This Weekend

Halloween is a week away and you can get into the spirit now by cooking up something both festive and sweet! Pull out your baking supplies and get cooking!

 

1 – Jack-O-Lantern Rice Kreepies

courtesy of realsimple.com

2 – White Chocolate Eyeballs

courtesy of realsimple.com

3 – Spooky Spider Cookies

courtesy of realsimple.com

4 – Creepy Bat Cupcakes

courtesy of realsimple.com

5 – Frozen Banana Ghosts

courtesy of realsimple.com

3 Easy Ways to Decorate for Halloween

October is here and we’re ready to celebrate Halloween with all things SPOOKY! If you haven’t decorated your home yet, don’t worry! We have 3 very easy DIY projects that can make your apartment look festive in no time.

 

1 – Paper Bats- Head here to find an easy bat template to print. Draw your bats on black construction paper and cut them out. You can easily hang them using two-sided tape anywhere you want in your home to give it a spooky touch!

Courtesy of lovelyluckylife.com

2 – Trash Bag Spiderwebs- All you need for this one is a trash bag and a pair of scissors. Easy enough, right? Head here to learn how to fold and cut your trash bag to make a creepy spiderweb for your home this Halloween!

Courtesy of Simplybeingmommy.com

 

3- Monster Door – Give your door a spooky face using construction paper, streamers and more! Let your kids help with this one and it’s fun for the whole family!

Courtesy of parade.com

5 Fun Fall Attractions in New England

The cooler temperatures are on their way in and it won’t be long before we can see the leaves changing on the trees! Fall is right around the corner and New England has so much to offer for it’s visitors and locals. If you’re planning a day out to do something seasonal and fun try one of these great ideas…

 

1 – Crawford Notch Scenic Train Ride – Take in some of the most beautiful, scenic views New Hampshire has to offer this fall while on the train!

conwayscenic.com

2 – Acadia National Park in Bar Harbor, ME – Take in brilliant fall foliage from one of the most popular national parks in New England.

newenglandwithlove.com

3 – Nashoba Valley Winery in Bolton, MA – Taste wine in the tasting room, have lunch or visit the orchards to pick apples at Nashoba Vallery Winery!

Courtesy of Kazzit.com

4 – Cider Hill Farm in Amesbury, MA – Food trucks, pick your own fruits and pumpkins, cider donuts and more! Check out the fun at Cider Hill Farm this fall.

Courtesy of Boston.com

5 – Davis Mega Maze in Sterling, MA – Test your skills in the massive corn maze made up of 8 miles of corn and 3 miles of path at Davis Farm Land!

davisfarmland.com