Finding easy life hacks seems to be the thing these days, everyone is pinning or sharing different ways to do different things easily and with daily products. Check out these 20 quick and simple kitchen hacks.
1. Use dental floss to slice cheesecake. The secret to slicing cheesecake perfectly can be found…in your medicine cabinet. Really! Hold the floss taut, as you would to floss your teeth, and gently, with a slight sawing motion, slice through the cake. Clean slices! For best results, use plain (unscented) floss.
2. Spray or oil a measuring cup before measuring sticky ingredients to ensure easy release. Make sure you get all of the honey, molasses, or other sticky ingredient out of your measuring cup by spraying it with non-stick spray before measuring. It will ensure an easy release of sticky ingredients.
3. Store avocado with a sprinkle of lemon juice to keep it from turning brown. It’s as easy as sprinkling lemon juice on top of exposed surfaces of avocado or avocado slices. It will keep them looking green and tasting fresh for far longer.
4. Wrap the top of a bunch of bananas in plastic. Seriously! Wrapping the top of a bunch of bananas with plastic will prolong their life by a few days, and will slow down the browning process.
5. Run a knife under hot water for perfect bars, brownies, or cake slices. Run a knife under hot water, then dry using a kitchen towel or paper towel before slicing. The warmth of the knife will help it glide through the cake easily, for clean slices. Repeat, drying and cleaning off the knife between cuts.
6. Make cookie dough in advance and freeze it. Most cookie dough containing butter can be made in advance and frozen. For drop cookies such as chocolate chip, you can pre-portion dough into circles. For slice and bake cookies, you can form dough into logs then slice and bake as desired.
7. Combine herbs and oil or butter to make your own bouillon cubes. Start by combining butter or olive oil with enough herbs to form a thick paste. Form them into balls or cubes, wrap individually, and freeze or refrigerate. Voila–you have bouillon cubes ready to go when you are.
8. Bring stale cake back to life by placing it in a steam bath. Place a slightly stale cake, either by the slice or whole, above a pan of simmering water. Let it steam for a couple of minutes, not so much as to melt the frosting, but to add moisture to the cake. Serve immediately after doing this.
9. Freeze your broth in individual servings. If you’ve made homemade broth, separate it into common servings such as 1 or 2 cups, store in freezer bags marked with the amount or empty yogurt containers, and freeze. It will keep for months, and you’re ready to roll next time you want to make a soup.
10. Flip natural peanut butter before you open it to help the oil incorporate. If you love the taste of natural peanut butter but don’t care for the messy mixing of the nut butter and separated oil, flip the jar for several hours or overnight. It minimizes the annoyance of stirring to combine, meaning less fuss and mess for you.
11. Soften brown sugar with a slice of apple. Place a slice of apple in an airtight container with hardened brown sugar. Within hours it will soften the sugar. Once softened, use the sugar immediately.
12. Use a plastic bag with the end cut off for easy piping of icing. No piping bags? Not a huge problem. You can use heavy-duty freezer bags instead. Simply fill with frosting, cut the tip of the bag off in whatever size you’d like to pipe, and get to work. It won’t be as fancy as if you have a fancy decorating tip, but it will do the job for simple piping work.
13. Make your own confectioners’ sugar by grinding granulated sugar. You can make your own confectioners’ sugar at home with regular granulated sugar. Simply put granulated sugar in a blender, and blend for up to 30 seconds. It will grind the sugar into a super-fine, confectioners’ sugar consistency.
14. Use a bottle opener to open jars. If you’ve got a tough jar to open, use a bottle opener. Use it to gently pop the seal on top, making it much easier to open.
15. Combine vinegar and milk to make instant buttermilk. If you, like many, don’t use enough buttermilk to warrant buying an entire container, there’s an easy way to make it on command. Add 1 tablespoon of vinegar to a measuring cup and then fill with milk until the mixture totals one cup. Wait until it curdles for an easy DIY solution. Using the same ratio, you can make any quantity.
16. Store lettuce in paper towels. Storing fresh lettuce between paper towels will not only keep lettuce fresher far longer than just keeping it in the bag, but it will remain crisp and won’t get slimy.
17. Microwave citrus fruits for 10 seconds before juicing to release the most juice. Lightly warming citrus will help it soften and release more juice. Microwaving it for 10 seconds will help you get more juice out of each and every lemon, lime, or orange.
18. Store pineapples upside down. Store pineapples upside down for the best flavor: it helps the sweet juice which has sunk to the bottom of the fruit travel back up the fruit, making every single slice juicy and flavorful.
19. Pour hot milk into the “empty” peanut butter or Nutella jar for a tasty drink. Don’t throw out that nearly empty jar! Those hard to reach bits can still be employed to make a delicious beverage. Simply add warm milk, shake or stir, and enjoy.
20. Make your own yogurt by combining a few tablespoons of yogurt with cream or milk. Using the last few tablespoons of a container of yogurt as a “starter” you can combine it with a cup of cream or milk to create more yogurt. Use a bit of that yogurt as a starter for your next batch.
February 28, 2015 – 10:07 AM - | Posted in Home Life | No Comments »
I have older girls, but there’s nothing better than watching Sesame Street sometimes. My youngest daughter and I still love to watch, and still love Elmo! I’m also the room mom to a first grade classroom, and these kids still love their Sesame Street, so the new DVD of America’s favorite furry monster is the perfect addition to my collection.
Sesame Street: The Best of Elmo 3 is available on DVD and digital March 3, 2015! The DVD includes a bonus full length feature called “Elmo and Abby’s Birthday Fun”!
Elmo is back and more lovable than ever as Warner Bros. Home Entertainment and Sesame Workshop, the nonprofit educational organization behind Sesame Street, release Sesame Street: The Best of Elmo 3 on DVD and digital on March 3, 2015. This trip down memory lane will teach Elmo fans both young and old about the importance of friendship and helping others. Elmo sings and dances his way through numbers, letters, vocabulary, and emotions with his Sesame Street pals and a few famous friends like Melissa McCarthy, Taye Diggs, Drew Brees, Romeo Santos, and many more!
Elmo fans will love this new DVD where everyone’s favorite furry and red friend is reminded of all the fun, friends and music he’s made on Sesame Street. Join Elmo as he does “The Elmo Slide,” finds out about “The Power of Yet” with Janelle Monae, and sings about the number 5 with the band Train. Elmo learns about counting, vocabulary and even how manage his emotions in the hit song, “Belly Breathe” with Colbie Caillat and Common. This special collection is filled with Elmo moments fans will treasure. As an added extra, this release features a special bonus title which will provide over two hours of Elmo!
“With such great response from the release of Sesame Street: The Best of Elmo 2, Warner Home Bros. Home Entertainment is thrilled to release the next edition, Sesame Street: The Best of Elmo 3,” said Jeff Brown, WBHE Executive Vice President and GM of Non-Theatrical Franchise Marketing. “Kids now have the opportunity to see their favorite TV character’s most memorable segments all on one fantastic DVD.”
Celebrating its impressive 45th anniversary this season, Sesame Street is the #1 top-of-mind preschool show with moms. The series has received more Emmy awards than any other show in television history, as well as a Lifetime Achievement Emmy Award.
You can purchase or pre-order on amazon.com.
February 24, 2015 – 2:06 PM - | Posted in Entertainment, Reviews | No Comments »
There’s no more of familiar brand than Mattel in our homes, they’re a worldwide leader in designs, manufacturing, and marketing of toys and family products. Mattel has recently created a private online community of about 300 expecting Moms and they’re relying on these Moms to help them gain a grater understanding of a Mom lifestyle and their their consumers as it relates back to the world of play.
Mattel is now opening this invitation to first time pregnant Moms!
As a member you’ll be part of an exclusive group that provides Mattel with feedback and perspective on toys, challenges you face as an expecting mom, and other topics of mutual interest of the group. To thank you for your impact on the brand, you’ll receive a $5 Amazon gift code for joining and an additional $10 Amazon gift code each month for participating.
Are you expecting and interested in joining? See if you qualify here: http://mayweask.com/fisherprice16
This is a sponsored post. I received a promotional item as a thank you for participating.
February 19, 2015 – 1:40 PM - | Posted in promotions | No Comments »
Winters aren’t the most welcoming seasons of all. It’s not just because the temperature plummets, workload increases four folds, you can’t go out. I mean those are obvious, but there is something that irks me more than all these- evenings get incredibly long! Hadn’t it gone dark at 4 pm, things could have been so dramatically different.
Nevertheless, as kids and my hubby stay in, we hunker down and get to spend some quality time together. But once I tuck the kids to bed, I’m stuck for an entertainment rut. So there are two things I usually do: either switch on the telly or play bingo online.
Online bingo sites like GameVillage Bingo are a great source of entertainment. You don’t end up spending a lot of money as the site has plenty of great value bingo games. For many, playing bingo is not always about winning money, and I’m no different. Sometimes all I need is a quiet time for myself. Bingo gives me that and also pumps up my adrenaline. Sitting at the edge of the bed, waiting for that one last number to get called out. There’s nothing like it. When you get lucky with the right set of cards, the game can get incredibly fun.
Bingo isn’t as old fashioned as it seems. You don’t really need to keep your eyes down to concentrate on your bingo cards. The software does the automatic daubing for you. You can watch your cards’ progress and enjoy the banter and chat with your fellow roomies. In GameVillage Bingo, the unique radio bingo keeps me occupied throughout. I tune in to the radio, listen to music, keep an eye on my bingo cards and chat with my friends. The bingo games on GameVillage are unique and lot better than most of the bingo sites I have played on.
Of course online bingo is just one among the many fun things you can do to keep yourself occupied in the long, cold winter nights.
February 19, 2015 – 1:09 PM - | Posted in Uncategorized | No Comments »
The Oscars are coming! Check out this simple star-struck mani idea to get red-carpet (or couch party) ready.
With Hot Designs nail art pens, adding festive flair to your nails is easy. These dual-sided nail art pens have nail polish on one side and a fine-tipped pen on the other for precision drawing. Each set of 6 colors is available in retailers like Walmart and Bed Bath and Beyond, for $14.99 or via www.gethotlooks.com. They are also available as single pens at for $5.99 at Kmart and Walmart.
February 19, 2015 – 1:02 PM - | Posted in beauty | No Comments »