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DIY 4th of July Popsicles, Two Ways: One for Kids and One for Adults!

by M.E. Gray

Recipe: 4th of July popsicles!

Here's a summertime tip: Always make popsicles. Summer is here, which means the Fourth of July is on the way and you probably have a barbeque to host. Whether you're holding a kid-friendly summer party or an adults-only celebration, popsicles will make everyone happy, including you! That's because they're ridiculously easy to make, you can prep them far in advance, and nothing tastes better on a hot day than a refreshing popsicle. We have two tasty recipes for you to prep this summer. The first popsicles are champagne-infused (adults only!), mimicking the colors in a bomb pop. The second are kid-friendly (but equally delicious) lemon-flavored fruity popsicles.        

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15 Ways to Guarantee You'll Keep Your Kitchen Cabinets Organized

by Holly Wade
15 Products for Organizing your Kitchen Cabinets

Small space living is not ideal, but I make it work thanks to the abundance of helpers out there that 1) support my slight hoarding habits and 2) keep my house somewhat organized. I have a small rental kitchen, and despite the fact that I have way too much stuff (and I own it!), I stay extremely organized and you can too! These 15 products are perfect for organizing your kitchen cabinets, so no matter how much or how little space you have, you experience Zen at home.

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How to Make Your Home Instantly Smell Like Christmas

by M.E. Gray

How to Make Your Home Instantly Smell Like Christmas

Time is flying by, and Christmas is already less than a week away! If the holidays have you stressed and you're looking for a way to relax, or if you want to fill your home with the rich aromas of winter, we have you covered! This quick recipe makes a warm batch of festive aromatherapy to fill your home - perfect for holiday parties or snuggling on the couch with a classic Christmas movie.   

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Make This: Bloody Good Halloween Bark

by M.E. Gray

Bloody Good Halloween Bark Recipe | Sweet Enough to Die For

Everyone's talking about costume parties and thriller flicks, but even as an adult I know Halloween is all about the candy. I wanted to make a spooky treat that was different than the usual mix of fun candies and white chocolate - I wanted something... darker. With bloody red candy melts and dark chocolate chips, this Halloween bark is sure to hit the darkest of spots.

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10 Different Ways To Preserve Fruits and Vegetables For The Winter

by Faith Provencher
10 Different Ways To Preserve Fruits and Vegetables For The Winter
Photo: Foodie Factor

I don't know about you, but one of the things I hate about winter (and there are many) is the lack of fresh vegetables from the garden or local farm stand. There's nothing like a fresh tomato picked that very day. But today we have some tips for preserving that delicious bounty of produce that we will soon lack. These ideas will help you to eat healthier throughout the long run, and they'll also help you to waste less food in the short term. Read on for tons of great ideas!   

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Curb The Clutter: Genius Ways to Store and Organize Cookware

Pots and Pans Organizer Ideas
Photo: Scott Clark

It's not an easy task to organize pots and pans in the kitchen... the varied shapes and sizes of the different pieces often end up occupying more space than they should. And let's not even get into trying to close a drawer full of utensils in disarray! But don't give up - there are plenty of ways to tame the mess. Here are twenty-two clever ideas and do-it-yourself projects to get everything under control once and for all.      

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Before you Decorate Easter Eggs, Try This Golden Trick

by M.E. Gray

Golden egg trick | How to scramble your eggs before you hard boil them!

The internet is teeming with hacks and tricks, and as we all know, a lot of them just aren't true. It's the nature of the beast. The same freedom that allows anyone to have a voice on the web also means people just get on the internet and tell lies (it's true, Buster)! I saw this trick a while back for how to pre-scramble eggs before you cook them and I was mildly skeptical. It really felt like another internet lie. Since we're looking forward to the Easter season and eggs have been on my brain, this trick came to mind and I decided to be the guinea pig and try my hand at some golden eggs. I'm here to tell you: it's no lie!             

While your kids may enjoy decorating hard boiled eggs for Easter, most don't like eating them afterwards. I say that as a former kid - I hated hard boiled eggs. However, how fun would it be to scramble up a few golden eggs beforehand? It would be a pretty neat surprise once they cracked into them. Of course you could also recruit your kiddos to do the egg-spinning themselves! 

Golden eggs for Easter.

The origin of this golden egg trick has been cited as coming from Japan, where it's known more plainly as a "yellow boiled egg." There are in fact many different contraptions and tools that will spin the insides of eggs for you, but this old tee method works just fine. 

Materials

How to make golden eggs

 

  • Eggs
  • Long sleeve t-shirt or pair of pantyhose
  • Two rubber bands

Step

Golden Easter Eggs | Step 1

Golden Easter Eggs | Step 1

In order to scramble the yolk and whites inside the shell, you have to shake up the egg. The easiest and least damaging way to do this is to secure and spin it. Grab a long-sleeved t-shirt (one that you're not particularly attached to, since the spinning could stretch it out), and secure one sleeve closed with a rubber band. Slip an egg up the sleeve, and secure it in place on the other side.

Step

Golden Easter Eggs | Step 2

Now to twirl! Grab each end of the shirt sleeve securely, and twirl the egg. The shirt will twist as you twirl the egg in the same direction. Once the shirt has twisted as tight as you can get it (a few rotations of the egg), pull the sleeve taut. This should spin the egg roughly (I found this video to be very helpful). Do this twirling and pulling method at least 20 times. This will break up the yolk and mix the insides of the egg together. 

Golden Easter Eggs | Step 2

Step

Golden Easter Eggs | Step 3

Once the eggs are thoroughly shaken up, hard boil them as normal. Place the eggs in a pot of cold water, and slowly bring the water to a boil. Once the water starts to boil, remove from heat, cover, and let sit for 8-10 minutes. Rinse in cold water.

Step

Golden Easter Eggs | Step 4

Now you can either decorate your golden eggs, or just get to peeling! My first attempt at making golden eggs resulted in a few duds - I recommend doing a couple test eggs first, to get the hang of it and ensure you're scrambling them enough.


The chicken that laid the golden egg? Try this trick for scrambling your eggs inside the shell.

How to make a golden egg.

 

Golden egg trick | How to scramble your eggs before you hard boil them!

Try this trick for scrambling your eggs inside the shell before they're cooked.
Share this trick on Pinterest!

Now my golden eggs just need to be dyed for Easter. Can you believe another holiday is almost here already? Easter is popping up really early this year, sharing April 1st with April Fools Day. It's the perfect opportunity to dupe your family with this trick!

Your golden eggs are ready to be dressed up - check out our favorite decorating ideas!

50 Easter Egg Ideas

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Try This: Mulling Spice Simmer Pot Recipe

by M.E. Gray

How to make your home instantly smell like autumn with this fall simmer pot recipe

We're getting to that time of year where two different things are happening: parties are picking up, and the cold weather is forcing us to spend more time indoors. So... basically the perfect combination for some cozy aromatherapy! The fall season has so many distinct smells associated with it - like crisp winds, earthy leaves, fresh rain - and one of the most recognizable scent combinations is that of mulling spices. Whether you have a dinner party coming up, or simply want to flood your home with the scents of the season, this quick fall simmer pot is sure to do the trick.         

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What Should You Do This Month? Throw a Backyard Solstice Party to Celebrate the Start of Summer

by Rachel Jacks

Backyard Solstice Party

While many Americans think that summer starts on Memorial Day, it officially begins on summer solstice, usually June 21 in the Northern hemisphere. The longest day of the year seems like the ideal excuse for a party, so here are some ideas for a backyard celebration of midsummer. And if you don't get around to throwing a summer solstice party, there's no expiration date on these outdoor party ideas!                

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How To: Make the Ultimate, Reusable Fruit Fly Trap

by Chris Gardner
DIY Fruit Fly Trap
Learn how to get rid of fruit flies for good.

Ah ... summertime. The pinnacle of the produce season means amazing things for your palate: sun-ripened fruit, homegrown vegetables, and fresh herbs for days.

Unfortunately, ripe produce also invites other guests to the flavor party: fruit flies. These little monsters (drosophilidae), with their big red eyes and kneejerk-wave inspiring flight patterns, aren't terribly harmful (they have a...

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How to Craft the Perfect Smoothie Bowl

by Holly Wade
How to Craft the Perfect Smoothie Bowl
Photo by Holly Wade

You've seen these smoothie bowl recipes (or acai bowls) all over Pinterest, but have you tried to make one of your own yet? A smoothie bowl isn't hard to make it home, but remember, it's just as much about the smoothie as it is about the toppings! Blend your favorite ingredients together to make a tasty smoothie bowl recipe that will ensure your morning is off to a great start.

This strawberry banana smoothie bowl recipe is my favorite go-to flavor combo, but I can mix it up with different toppings based on what I have in the house, mixing chia seeds, nuts, fruits and coconut shavings.

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17 Time-Saving Gifts for New Moms 

by Faith Provencher

17 quick gifts for new moms

With Mother's Day right around the corner, many of us are on the hunt for gifts for those new moms out there. The best gifts usually involve something that will save her time or give her a bit of extra time to herself. So we've done the research and rounded up the best ideas from around the web. Here are 17 gifts for new moms that will put a smile on her face this Mother's Day (or any day of the year!).         

17 Time-Saving Gifts for New Moms 

Photo: Blue Apron

1. Meal Delivery Gift Card - Give mom the gift of delicious food while she's adjusting to having a new baby in the house. There are tons of great options... Blue Apron is probably the most well known, but others include Sun Basket, Freshly,  Plated and Hello Fresh. And Nurture Life is specifically for kid's meals and they come already cooked. 

 

2. Night of Free Babysitting - After weeks and weeks of all-things-baby, mom is probably desperately in need of a few hours to herself. A night of free babysitting is one of the best gifts you can give her, so she can go out on the town with her other half or just have some much-needed alone time. 

 

17 Time-Saving Gifts for New Moms 

Photo: Original Baby

3. Ba Baby Bottle Holder - This clever bottle attachment helps babies as young as three months hold their own bottle, allowing mom to have both hands free to do work or chores around the house while baby eats. Which may not seem like a big deal, but when you're short on time it is a wonderful help. Head over to Amazon to buy one.

 

4. Homemade Meals To Put In Freezer - If you like to cook, whip up a large batch of something that is freezable and bring pre-portioned servings over to mom. This will be especially welcome for brand new moms who have their hands full feeding baby and don't have time to cook for themselves. Great freezable options include things like chili, chicken soup, beef stew and lasagna. 

 

5.  Monthly Product Delivery Membership - Automating the delivery of products is becoming popular, and with good reason... it eliminates the need to remember/go out to buy large items that you use on a daily basis. Things like paper towels, toilet paper, cleaning supplies, vitamins, snacks, self care products, etc. are great things to schedule monthly delivery of. Get mom set up with Amazon, Public Goods (for self care), Petsmart (for pet food) or Grove Collaborative (for all-natural home products).  

 

17 Time-Saving Gifts for New Moms 

Photo: Jawbone

6. Jawbone Activity Tracker - Give active moms an activity tracker to help them figure out a new daily routine. Jawbone helps you track your steps, but also things like food, sleep and heart rate to make sure everything is where it should be. Other similar products include FitBit, Garmin Forerunner, and the Samsung Gear Fit2.

 

7. Mobile Photo Printer - We all take a lot of pictures these days, now that our smart phones allow us to keep a camera on hand at all times... but new moms may take the most! But it's difficult to find the time to get those images printed. Give her a compact photo printer like Sprocket so she can easily print out all of those adorable images and hang them up on the wall.

 

17 Time-Saving Gifts for New Moms 

Photo: Owlet

8. Owlet Smart Sock - The Owlet Smart Sock silently tracks an infant's heart rate and oxygen levels while they sleep so mom can rest easy. And the more sleep for mom, the better! If anything is wrong, Owlet will send an alert right to her phone. 

 

9. Audible Membership - If mom loves to read but can't find the time anymore (because sleep usually trumps reading when you're overtired!), buy her a membership to Audible. She can listen to books in the car, or even at home while she's breastfeeding or cooking dinner. The first month is free, and it is $14.95 per month after that.

 

17 Time-Saving Gifts for New Moms 

Photo: Swoop

10. Swoop Toy Bag + Playmat - The Swoop Toy Bag + Playmat is a simple yet genius product that will save tons of time during cleanup... just set up Legos or blocks on the mat and then pull the drawstring when the kids are finished playing. Genius! They come in different sizes and make a great portable bag for bringing toys elsewhere too.

 

11. Local Coffee Shop Gift Card - Combat sleep deprivation with some extra caffeine in the form of a gift card to a local coffee shop. Mom gets a jolt of energy, and a local establishment gets some extra business... everybody wins! 

 

12. A Storage Box Filled With Cute Greeting Cards - If mom never missed a birthday or a holiday before, odds are she'll still want to send greeting cards to her friends after she's had a baby... but the logistics of going out to the store to buys cards are much more complicated now! Buy her a large variety of cards and put them in a cute storage box with dividers for different holidays. Add a book of stamps to complete the package!

 

13. Workout DVDs - If she loves to work out but doesn't have enough time to get to the gym, buy her a couple of at-home workout DVDs. That way, she doesn't have to bundle up baby every time she wants to go to the gym to work out... she can simply pop in the DVD when baby is down for a nap. 

 

17 Time-Saving Gifts for New Moms 

Photo: SpaFinder

14. Mani Pedi Gift Card - Everybody needs a little bit of pampering every now and then, but especially a new mom. Get her a gift card to a highly rated nail salon near her using a service like SpaFinder... you can search by location and service and then buy a gift card right on their website. Mom will feel like a queen!

 

15. Multi Cooker - This clever appliance does triple duty as a slow cooker, pressure cooker and a steamer... so not only will she save space, but she'll also be able to take advantage of the joys of a slow cooker - set it and forget it! Or if she's running behind, use the pressure cooker to get things moving right along. Here is a highly-rated one from Amazon.

 

17 Time-Saving Gifts for New Moms 

Photo: Summer Infant

16. Pacifier Thermometer - Keep track of baby's temperature with this genius thermometer and pacifier in one! The small screen on the front glows red if a fever is detected, alerting mom right away to any problems. Check out the Summer Infant Pacifier Thermometer here.

 

17. Monthly Subscription Activity Box - Monthly Subscription boxes make great gifts for moms who love to buy educational toys for her kids, but may not have the time to research and purchase the best ones on the market. Services such as Milestones or Hoppi Box will do the work for you, sending curated packages monthly filled with the best educational items for the little ones. 

 

17 Time-Saving Gifts for New Moms 
Share this post on Pinterest! [Photo: Swoop]

 

 

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25 Best Store-Bought Party Appetizers

by DIY Maven

When you're hosting an impromptu gathering or last minute holiday party, store bought appetizers and pre-made frozen party snacks can be a life saver. Here's a list of some of our favorites:

Best store bought appetizers

Appetizers are BIG in Sweetie-pie's family. Christmas eve is oftentimes a collection of cheeses, rollups, tiny meatballs, chicken wings and other delectables that you can eat with your fingers or toothpicks. Which is why I LOVE finding and making...

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Hey, Coffee Lovers! Try These Caramel Mocha Coffee Pops

by M.E. Gray

Make these: Caramel Mocha Coffee Popsicles

Here's the situation: It's summer. It's scorchingly hot outside, the sun is beating down, the A/C seems to be broken, and you just can't stop sweating. On top of all this, you still haven't had your morning cup of coffee yet! What do you do?? Well, if I were you, I'd whip up some of these delicious mocha caramel coffee popsicles (say that five times fast) to prepare yourself for any worst case scenario!          

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No Machine Needed: Peaches and Cream Ice Cream Recipe

by Holly Wade

No-Machine Peaches & Cream Ice Cream

I've waited all year for peaches to come back in season, and now I'm soaking up every possible recipe with peaches. As the weather continues to heat up, why not combine my love with peaches with my love ice cream? This no-churn, no-machine peaches & cream ice cream is the perfect combination of the two flavors and is so easy to make with only four ingredients. Plus, it's National Ice Cream month! What better way to celebrate?

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Make This: Recipe Card Book (with Free Printable!)

by M.E. Gray

Free Printable Recipe Cards + How to turn them into a key ring booklet

While I don't consider myself much of a chef, I do have a few tried and true recipes that I need to hold on to. Previously, I was using the scraps-of-scribbed-paper-stuffed-in-a-cookbook method of organization (most of these scraps of paper were covered in various unidentifiable spills too - yikes!). Now, though, using these free printable recipe cards has definitely simplified life in the kitchen for me. All my recipes are in one place, the key ring makes them easy to rearrange and organize, and the plastic sleeves protect them from my clumsiness.       

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