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.

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!

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

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

Tips for Trying Tie Dye at Home

Tie dye has come back in a BIG way in 2020! If you’ve looked online or shopped at stores recently you’ve probably seen lots of tie dye merchandise to buy. Instead of buying it pre-made, why not get crafty and create your own tie-dye at home? Read below for some tips for creating awesome and unique tie dyed garments!

 

1 – Think about what you want to tie dye. Is it a t shirt or a pair of shorts? Either way make sure that the material is cotton so the dye will adhere to the fibers of your garment as best as possible. Also, choose a white garment so your colors will stand out.

 

2 – Purchase your fabric dyes individually or purchase a kit. Stores like Michaels, Target and Amazon are selling kits that come with everything you need. If you don’t use a kit, you’ll also need some squeeze bottles, plastic sheets, plastic wrap, plastic gloves and rubber bands.

 

3 – Bullseye? Sunburst? Polka Dots? Decide which tie dye pattern you want to try. Click here for a great list of patterns with detailed instructions on how to achieve each look. Fold or roll your garment and place your rubber bands accordingly.

 

4 – Set up your work station outdoors to limit the mess. Lay out your plastic sheet and get your fabric dyes in the squeeze bottles. Make sure to wear your plastic gloves so you don’t tie dye your hands! (if you do get dye on your hands you can mix baking soda and water together to create a paste. Scrub it on your skin and wash away with soap and water.)

 

5 – Have fun and unleash your creativity! Choose fun color patterns and don’t be afraid to be bold. You won’t know how the garments will look until they’ve dried and been washed.

 

6 – When your garments are done wrap them in plastic wrap and let them dry overnight. When they’re ready to be unwrapped, wash them outdoors with a hose or in a laundry sink to remove the excess dye. After you’ve washed them throw them into the washing machine (without any other clothes) for a quick rinse and then dry.

 

7 – Enjoy your new tie dyed creations! Make sure to wash them separately for the first few washes to be sure the dye doesn’t bleed onto other clothes.

Princeton Westford – Your New Home Without the Hassle

Princeton Westford in Westford, MA offers so many amenities for everyone in your family to enjoy throughout the year! Sitting on a very tranquil and spacious 90 acres, this community has plenty to keep you busy while spending time outdoors. Numerous areas to get out and walk or bike, play with the pup in our dog park, swing, slide and play in the onsite playground or take a dip in the swimming pool.  All these outdoor amenities are available to enjoy during the warmer months.  Or year round if that’s your thing. Spend your evenings sitting on your balcony or patio while overlooking the expansive grass courtyard below. Imagine….a beautiful lawn without the mowing! We’ll take care of all landscaping.  Do you have a green thumb?  Pick out a plot in our community garden and plant your own vegetables to grow.  Come enjoy Home without the Hassle.

One and two bedroom floor plans are available are we’re ready to help you choose which option is right for you! Call us to schedule an in-person or virtual tour of Princeton Westford today.

Additional information, photos and floor plans can be viewed at princetonwestford.com.

 

5 Must-Haves for Summer 2020

Summer is only a few weeks away! Whether you plan to spend your summer relaxing, reading or cooking great BBQ food, there is a cool gadget on this list that you’ll want to try…

 

Hoodivision.com

1 – PadHat Sunshade for iPad or Tablet – If you’re planning to read or scroll your social media feeds at the beach or on your balcony you’ll need one of these! They protect your tablet from the sun and heat so it’s easy to see.

 

sharperimage.com

2 – Grill Light & FanNeed to grill at night? No problem! This grill light and fan has LED lights to help you see your food and a built in fan to blow smoke away from your face.

 

Amazon.com

3 – Bear Paws Shredder Claws – If you prefer smoking to grilling, shred your meat quickly and easily with these shredder claws!

 

Walmart.com

4 – Beach Towel Clips – Claim your chair and keep your towel in place with these bright and colorful beach towel clips!

 

Amazon.com

5 – Popsicle Molds – No visit from the ice cream man? No problem! Make your own popsicles at home by freezing your favorite fresh fruits, yogurts and juices.

Creating Pots With Thrillers, Fillers and Spillers

Adding colorful annuals to your porch or balcony area is good for the soul! Creating a beautiful outdoor space will give you both a fun project and also a pretty place to relax at the end of a long day. Not sure where to start? All you need to remember are three words….thriller, filler and spiller! In order to create a beautiful potted arrangement you’ll need one of each.

 

courtesy of Garden Gate Magazine

 

1 – Thrillers are the showpiece of your arrangement. A palm tree, a tall tropical flower or a really colorful plant are all thrillers. They’re usually taller than the other plants and give your pots a real “pop” of excitement.

 

2 – Fillers are flowers or plants that are of medium height. They have more rounded, mounding habits and spread to fill in the gap between your thrillers and your spillers.

 

3 – Spillers are flowers or plants that will move and drape over the sides of your pots as they grow. They usually add great foliage and color to your pots as well.

 

Lewisdrug.com

Have you created your outdoor pots this year? Post them on Facebook or Instagram and tag us so we can see! Happy spring!

5 Ways to Celebrate Mom – At Home With Princeton

If you’re at home with Mom this Mother’s Day there are many ways you can celebrate her. If you’re separated from her while social distancing there are still plenty of ways you can treat Mom this year! Take a look at these ideas for celebrating Mom while staying safe.

 

1 – Buy her a gift card to a local restaurant. She can use this to purchase herself some takeout now or save it to use later when restaurants are back open for business. Many restaurants are allowing gift card purchases online or over the phone to limit social contact. Does she prefer to be pampered? Check with her hairdresser or stylist to see if you can purchase a gift card to use at a future date.

 

2 – Have a special meal delivered to her. Call her favorite restaurant and have lunch or dinner delivered for her. She won’t have to cook and she’ll love the surprise….a win, win!

 

3 – Many local florists are taking orders now for Mother’s Day flower deliveries. Call today to get your order in an surprise mom with a beautiful bouquet.

 

4 – If mom prefers planting her own flowers, get her some annuals or perennials from your local garden store! You can call and place an order then pull up and have the order brought right out to your car. Drop off at Mom’s doorstep with a special note from you.

 

5 – Homemade cards are always appreciated by moms but this year more than ever she’ll love the sentiment. Write a list of your favorite things about her and why you are thankful for her, decorate and drop it off in her mailbox.