Friday, November 30, 2012

Rug Bargain!

I found a golden egg for all of you! Lowes is having a rug sale with area rugs for only $10 each! That's right, just $10. I happened to be needing a bunch of area rugs so I went ahead and ordered them and it is no joke! If you choose the ship to store option, you don't have to pay for shipping and you can also use this promo code for an additional 10% off: 470007216723254

Here's the link:!&Ns=p_product_price%7C0&page=1&AID=10926682&PID=1225267&SID=QfUi1DsNEeKY53J9paJ5ug0_Q1qJ3_wiK_0_0&cm_mmc=AFF_CJ-_-Slickdeals+Inc-_-1122587-_-10926682

Happy shopping!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Gifts for Grandma

It can be difficult to buy gifts for the elderly people in you life. Many are in assisted living facilities or have limited space for extra things. Here are a few tried and true gifts that they are sure to enjoy!

  • Write a family newsletter each month and mail with pictures
  • Lotion, body wash, or linen spray
  • Magazine subscription
  • Send a story that you've written each month of a memory together
  • A digital picture frame that you've pre-loaded with family shots
  • Photo calender
  • Amaryllis bulb
  • A homemade assortment of jams and jellies
  • For the reader: a collection of books
  • For the knitter: a basket full of yarn
  • A bird feeder to hang outside

Monday, November 26, 2012

Cyber Monday

Don't is Cyber Monday! Look around online for super deals. Some good things to keep an eye out for include: free shipping and blanket deals (ie. 30% off entire site). Enjoy staying in and shopping from home!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Black Friday

To get a jump on the black friday deals, check out this website: It has the store ads for black friday listed online and you can also search for specific items.
*Do the world a favor and please don't go shopping on Thanksgiving! Just wait one more day, you can do it! There, I said my piece. You can always check the store website if there is a super deal you have your eye on. Many stores will let you order online so you don't have to brave the crowds!

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Easy as pie

If you haven't frozen a homemade pie yet, you really should. It will change your life! Ok, maybe your Thanksgiving anyway...
To take the stress out of making dessert for Thanksgiving while cooking the turkey and one hundred other sides, try this!

  • First, grease the pie tin or plate.
  • Prepare the pie using your favorite double crust recipe, right up to the point where it's ready to go into the oven.
  • Place pie into plastic bag and freeze.
To bake:
  • Thaw pie, still in the bag, overnight in the fridge. (Make sure the plastic isn't touching the top crust.)
  • Remove plastic and bake according to your recipe.
  • Devour with a smile, knowing you didn't lift a finger!
*Pies will keep in the freezer for up to 3 months.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Brine that bird!

Here is a fabulous brine recipe for your Thanksgiving day feast. If you have never brined a turkey, this is the year to try it. Trust me, you will never return to your previous cooking method!

Homemade Turkey Brine
  • 2 gallons Water
  • 2 cups Apple Juice
  • 2 cups Kosher Salt (can Decrease To 1 1/2 Cups If You're Concerned About Salt)
  • 2 cups Brown Sugar
  • 2 cloves Garlic, Crushed
  • 5 pieces Bay Leaves
  • 3 Tablespoons Black Peppercorns
  • 1 Tablespoon Dried Rosemary
  • 2 whole Peel Of Oranges (Sliced Off The Fruit, Avoiding As Much Of The White Pith As Possible, Then Roughly Chopped)

  • Combine all ingredients in a large pot and bring to a boil. Turn off heat immediately, cover, and allow mixture to come to room temperature. Cool mixture in the fridge until you’re ready.

    To brine the turkey, remove turkey from wrapper, remove innards, and rinse thoroughly under cool water. Place the turkey into a plastic brining bag or large pot or bucket.
    Pour cool brine mixture over the top, adding extra cold water if you need more to cover. Seal bag or cover pot and allow turkey to brine in refrigerator for 8 to 18 hours before roasting.
    Before roasting, remove turkey from brine and rinse thoroughly under cold water. Pat dry. Discard brine.

    *The drippings will be VERY salty, so cut with water or add no sodium broth to make gravy.

    *This is a perfect time to pull out one of those free icing buckets for brining your bird!

    Monday, November 12, 2012

    Easy Entertaining

    When I invited a friend and her family over for dinner last weekend, she surprised me by insisting on bringing dinner. She just stated that I would host and she would cook. I have to say that this arrangement was fabulous! It completely took the stress away and resulted in a fun, relaxed evening. I think everyone would entertain more often by trying this. The next time someone invites me over for dinner I think I'll offer to bring it too. Give it a shot- you (and they) will be so glad that you did!

    Thursday, November 8, 2012

    New Traditions

     Looking for some new ideas for Thanksgiving traditions? Try out one of these this year!
    1. Have each family member choose one person they are thankful for that year. Take or send a treat or card to them to let them know why you are grateful for them.
    2. Share a Story. After dinner and at dessert have everyone share a story. Possible themes:
    • The greatest day of my life.
    • The best thing that happened in my life this year.
    • My favorite memory from childhood.
    • The funniest thing that ever happened to me.
         3. In the spirit of the original Thanksgiving, go local! Try adding venison, fresh-caught fish, and locally grown veggies to your menu.

         4. Have each person write on a slip of paper something they are grateful for and put them all in a hat. Let everyone draw a slip, read aloud, and guess who's slip they have.

    Wednesday, November 7, 2012

    Pancake Pops

    For a fun breakfast, add a lollipop stick to each pancake just after pouring onto the skillet. Carefully flip and serve with dippers such as maple syrup, melted butter, apple butter, and softened jams and jellies. *Be sure to leave plenty of room for flipping. These are not the prettiest pancakes, but you get the idea!


    Sunday, November 4, 2012

    Quell the smell

    After forgetting a to put the clothes in the dryer this week, one of the loads smelled somewhat off even after I had re-washed and dried it. I also was combating the less-than-lovely smell of soiled bibs that day and in an act of desperation, tossed some apple cider vinegar in the wash. After all, vinegar fixes everything, right? Well folks, good ol' vinegar took the smell right out of those clothes! I was using unscented detergent too and there was no trace of vinegar smell on the clean clothes. So the next time you have a malodorous load, toss about 1/2 cup of vinegar into the wash along with your detergent. Noses everywhere will thank you!

    Thursday, November 1, 2012

    Save your plates

    I inadvertently made a discovery today when packing up some plates and platters for a friend to borrow. I needed something to put in between the dishes to keep them from clattering but didn't want to waste paper towels. Place mats did the trick. They are thin enough to not add extra bulk or weight and fit perfectly between the plates. This would be great if you are packing to move too- you will have place mats ready to put on the table when you unload your plates!