20 Easter Desserts Recipes

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Check out this great round up of 20 AWESOME Easter Desserts!

Easter is a few weeks away!  Check out this great round up of FUN Easter Desserts!!  Just click on the link below and you’ll go right to the blogger who shared their treat.

St Patrick’s Day DIY Treat Jar and printable Shamrock Tag

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st patricks day jar ppm

Here is a quick and easy DIY St Patrick’s Day gift idea for your kids, teachers, coaches or whoever you may want to “treat”. With just 2 tasty ingredients, a jar and tag you could make someone really feel “lucky” this St Patrick’s Day.

Supplies

  • Rolo’s Candies (I used the Christmas ones I got from the clearance section, so that I could have some green and gold colors. However this project would work fine with just the regular gold foil Rolo’s as well)
  • Xtreme’s Airhead Sweetly Sour Candy
  • 1 Jar (found at Target in the Dollar Spot, Hobby Lobby or recycled from a yummy frappuccino)
  • Shamrock Tag (Made with a Silhouette Cutting Machine) or with the printable Shamrock Tag.)

Directions

  1. It really doesn’t get easier than this. Simply fill a jar with Rolo’s candies about 3/4th full. Take the Xtreme Airheads and roll them up. Place them on top of the Rolo’s to create the “rainbow” affect so popular with St Patrick’s Day.
  2. Finish the project with creating a Shamrock tag with your Silhouette Cutting Machine or print this Shamrock Tag HERE and cut it out by hand. Write your special message or again use the Silhouette machine and special cut vinyl with the message you desire.

st patricks day treat jar 2 ppm

This project takes less than 5 minutes from start to finish! It is so easy anyone can do it! Even better who wouldn’t love receiving a little jar of “gold” on St Patrick’s Day?!?!

How To Keep Your House Clean (Three Daily Routines Anyone Can Follow)

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Keeping your house clean when you are busy can be tough.  I've got the secret to helping you do that -- THREE simple routines can help you keep your own home clean (enough).

 

We all have been there.  Life is so busy that you just have to focus on the tasks at hand, which sometimes means the housework suffers.  There is no rule that says you have to spend hours cleaning your home each week.  In fact, by spending just a few minutes each day, your house will stay clean and organized.

But how do you know what you should do and how long it should take?  If you set up three simple routines to follow every day, your house will stay tidy (enough) in between those times when you do your bigger cleaning. Here’s what works for me:

1.  Morning routine.  This should be the simplest routine.  We are busy getting ready for school and/or work, so we don’t have extra time to really focus on cleaning.

Have each person in the family make his or her bed.  Each person should pick up his or her bedroom, including putting toys and books away and dirty clothes into the hamper.  The bedrooms are instantly picked up – and it is not falling onto the shoulders of just one person!

Then, load the breakfast dishes into the dishwasher, or, if you do not have one, place them into the sink.  Make sure you rinse them off before setting them into the sink (to avoid that stuck on food).  Then, wipe down the counters.  Now – your kitchen is tidy!

Finally, if you have time, toss a load of clothes into the washing machine.  Then, head out to start your day.  Even if you don’t put those into the dryer until you get home, they should still say fresh enough and not need to be laundered again.

There you’ve got it!  A few simple things you can do each morning to start your day off right and have a clean home!

 

2.  Evening cleaning frenzy. This can be fun and even a game for your younger kids.  Set the time for a specified time, be it 10, 20 or even 30 minutes.  Tell everyone to run around the house and pick up all of their items and put them away and try to “beat the clock.”  When the timer goes off, you can all then continue with your regular evening rituals – as you are done.  You might not get it all taken care of, but I am sure you will get a lot done!

You can easily change this up as you want to.  For instance, one night, you can focus on just one room and try to get it picked up, dusted and even vacuumed (or swept) in that 30 minute time frame.  Another evening, you might all take on a toilet and wipe it down.  The ideas are endless!

 

3.  Nightly kitchen and family room pickup.  Each evening, before we go to bed, we make sure the dishes are done and counters are clean.  That means if there is school work on the table, it is completed and put back into the backpack before bed.  The bills and mail are put where they belong.  The counters are always completely cleared off and wiped down.

The kids all make sure that their clothes, blankets, etc are all picked up and put away.  They may not actually be in their rooms, but they are at least in the basket at the bottom of our steps, to be taken up later and put away.  The entire main living area of hour home is always picked up before we go to sleep each night.

Why is that important?  When you wake to a clean house, it really can make you start your day off on the right foot and make it feel much less overwhelming.

 

My house is always picked up, as these are the routines I follow.  It doesn’t mean it is perfect and that is fine by me.  It is clean enough on a daily basis and gets me through until I do a more thorough weekly cleaning.

St. Patrick’s Day Meal Ideas {Recipes}

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st patricks day meal ideas

St. Patrick’s Day is coming up soon!  While you donn you green apparel that day, don’t forget to make some yummy dishes for your party!!

Prosado.com: Find the Right Tax Person For Your Situation!

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Use Prosado to help track down a tax professional or accountant for YOUR own situation!When it comes to doing taxes, for many, it is pretty straight forward and they can prepare them themselves.  However, for others, it is more complex.  Perhaps you had a large investment sale, or you moved across the country.  Perhaps you started a business or (sadly) had a business fold.  Whatever your situation, you know that it can be outside of your own realm of thinking to do your own taxes.  After all, you certainly do not want to end up with the IRS knocking on your front door!

So, how do you go about finding the right person?  For some, you can ask friends who can give referrals, but is that person really the right man or or woman for the job?  Do they really understand the complexities of your situation?  Perhaps they do, but they may not. It is important that you use the right person for your tax position.  Enter Prosado.com.  The solution to help you find the right tax or accounting services professional.

How does this site work? You simple enter your zip code into the space provided on the home page:

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Prosado.com will return a list of professionals, which include ratings and reviews.  These ratings are from not only customers, but even outside resources as well – helping you know as much as you can about the person’s professional work.  You can also review the location and profile, which can share details about work history, experience and even areas of expertise.

If you review the list and do not see anyone you think will work for you, then you do nothing more.  You can try another zip code or just click on out.  However, if you see people you might want to connect with for your work, you can proceed to the next step – -making contact!

You can contact up to four (4) professionals from your search results to help you decide who you would like to invite to bid on preparing your tax return. Once the invites have been sent, you can monitor the bids via your own personal dashboard. Your RFB (Request for a Bid) will remain active for 7 days. All bids will remain valid for another 7 days after the bidding phase ends so you can take your time making your decision.

So, what if you are looking for someone to do work other than just tax preparation?  Not a problem!  Once you’ve discussed your needs with the professionals you’ve reached out, you can then ask the person you wish to submit their fee through Prosado’s payment portal & you will have the protection of Prosado’s safe pay policy.  You can choose a tax and accounting professional with confidence since there is a 2 day money back cancellation policy (less a $15 cancellation fee).

Once you have chosen the tax and accounting professional you would like to work with, Prosado will email both you and your chosen professional all contact information. With the comfort of a private transaction, you make all arrangements with your professional to complete your tax return or other accounting needs.  Prosado has no involvement with any of your confidential papers or the actual preparation of your tax return or other accounting service, keeping the transaction safe & secure.  If after you have been in contact with the professional you chose, you are not comfortable and you’ve changed your mind, you can cancel your job. You will receive your money back minus a $15 cancellation fee.

Finally, when the work has been completed, Prosado.com will handle the payment.  You submit your payment to them and when the work is done, they will finalize the transaction and send payment to the professional for you.

With so many people  out there, Prosado.com can help you weed through the list and find the person who is right for YOU!

St Patrick’s Day Treat Boxes (Silhouette Project)

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st patricks day treat box

If you are looking for something fun for your kids, their teachers, co-workers, friends or family for St Patrick’s Day, then check out these ideas!  These super cute St Patrick’s Day Treat Boxes are crazy easy to make and tasty to eat! I found that it only took less than 5 minutes to make each box and they turned out absolutely perfect!

Supplies:

st patricks day treat box 2

Directions:

1. Go to the Silhouette Store HERE and purchase the Popcorn Box template ($0.99).

2. Using cardstock print the popcorn box template on your choice of paper. I chose a shade of green since this is a St Patrick’s Day project.

3. Print this St Patricks Day tag and cut out around the circle. Glue it to the one of the circles that cut in the above Silhouette template.

4. Assemble the popcorn box. This part is super easy. It literally just folds up and then glue along the side and bottom pieces.

5. Fill the box will Rolo’s wrapped candies. Make a handle with 1-2 Airhead Xtreme Sweetly Sour strips, by bending them into an arch shape and tucking them into the sides of the box.

 

DIY Window Cleaner (works just like Windex -without the chemicals)

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diy window cleaner

Keeping your house clean can seriously stink! Literally! I don’t know how many times I have had to open windows to air out the house from all of the nasty chemicals making me feel dizzy. That’s why I started doing research on ways to make my own household cleaners that are more natural, chemical free and way CHEAPER to make!

In the past I was totally a name brand Windex girl. Now I completely changed and have discovered an awesome DIY Window Cleaner recipe that works fantastic and is chemical free.

Ingredients

  • 1/4 cup rubbing alcohol
  • 1/4 cup white vinegar
  • 1 TBSP cornstarch
  • 2 cup warm water
  • 10-15 drops of essential oil (to help mask the smell of the vinegar and rubbing alcohol)

Mix all ingredients together well. Pour into an empty spray bottle and begin cleaning. You will be pleasantly surprised by how awesome this “chemical free” window cleaner works!

An Easy Way For More Absorbent, Better Smelling Towels

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If your towels are not smelling nearly as fresh as they once did, you might have build up!  Find out how to strip them clean and get those pesky odors out of them once and for all!!!

When you are drying off with your towel, you might catch a whiff from your towel, which is, shall we say “less than fresh.”  You know you just washed it so why in the world would it still smell?  Towels and washcloths tend get a build up of detergent and fabric softener.  This actually attracts smelly mildew and can even waterproof your towels.  That not only makes them smelly, but also can reduce the absorbency.

Rather than toss them away and purchase new ones, you can bring new life back to your towels with a simple solution — Vinegar and Baking Soda.  These two will work together:  The vinegar strips the detergent and softener build up.  Then, the baking soda will help remove the odors.   Before you know it, they will not only smell much better, but actually become more absorbent.

Here’s what you need:

  • 1/2 cup of baking soda
  • 1 cup of white vinegar
  • Washing Machine with HOT water (do not use any other temperature setting)

 

TOP LOADING MACHINE INSTRUCTIONS

Place your towels into the washing machine and fill with hot water.  To make it extra hot, you can even boil a large pot of water and pour it into the machine to ensure it is extra hot.

Once filled with water, pour in a cup of vinegar and run the machine through a cycle.  When done, refill the basin again with HOT water.  This time, add 1/2 cup of baking soda once the tub is filled.  Run through another cycle.

Dry as usual and your towels should be as good as new!  If you find they are not, just repeat the process and it should work.

 

FRONT LOADING MACHINE INSTRUCTIONS

Place your towels into the washing machine.  Add one up of vinegar to the laundry detergent dispenser.  Run a cycle using HOT water and HOT rinse cycle.

When done, repeat the process, but use 1/2 cup – 1 cup of baking soda in the dispenser. Run again using hot water.

Dry as usual and your towels should be as good as new!  If you find they are not, just repeat the process and it should work.

 

TIPS TO KEEP TOWELS FROM SMELLING

1.  Don’t allow odors to build up in your machine.  When done with the laundry, keep the door open, if possible.  The heat and moisture in the machine can cause mildew to build up, which will transfer the odors into your towels.

2.  Do not use too much detergent.  Believe it or not, you do not need to use the amount of detergent as listed on the product label.  In fact, you can use 1/3 of the amount they recommend and your clothes will still get clean.  Not only will this tip prevent build up, but it will also help save you money as you won’t go through detergent nearly as quickly!

3. Make sure the towels are completely dry before folding and putting them away.  If they are slightly damp at all, it will create odors.

4.  Hang your towels up after each use.  Don’t just hook it on the wall, or even fold it and place it on a towel bar.  Keep it open across the bar until dried.

5.  Clean your machine.  Take the time to wash your machine to kill odors.  You can do this easily by adding one cup of vinegar to an empty machine and running hot water through it.  Then, repeat the process with 1 cup of baking soda.

If your towels are not smelling nearly as fresh as they once did, you might have build up!  Find out how to strip them clean and get those pesky odors out of them once and for all!!!

 

Cheesy Garlic Mashed Potatoes Recipe

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cheesy garlic potatoes ppm

There are a few meals that just taste like “home” to me. Mashed potatoes are one of those meals. One of my favorite “homey” recipes is this Cheesy Garlic Mashed Potatoes. Although it’s very simple to make, it tastes like fine dining garlic mashed potatoes. Serve with a juicy steak or some fried chicken and enjoy!

Ingredients

4-5 large Russet Potatoes
1 1/2 cups Cheddar Cheese
1/2 cup Butter
1 cup Sour Cream
1 TBSP Garlic Powder
Salt and Pepper

Directions

  1. Cut Russet Potatoes into large 2 x 2 inch pieces. Fill a large stockpot with water and add cut potatoes. Place on stove top and boil until tender (about 10 minutes).
  2. Strain water. Add all ingredients and mash with a hand immersion blender until smooth.
  3. Add more seasoning to taste.
  4. Top with shredded cheddar cheese and serve!

25 Uses For Household Vinegar

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We've got a list of 25 GREAT ways to use vinegar!  From cleaning to pest control -- this list covers it!

Most of us have vinegar in our kitchen cupboards.  It is often used in cooking and for making colors for dying Easter eggs.  However, you can use it for SO much more than that!  While there are HUNDREDS of ideas out there, I’ve got 25 of the best ways to use this (very inexpensive) product in ways you may not have thought about before!

 

1.  Make your own buttermilk.  Many recipes may call for buttermilk, but who wants to purchase a quart to use less than a cup?  You can actually make it yourself by using vinegar!

Simply check the recipe and use a bit less. For example, if you need one cup of buttermilk, simply measure it out.  Then, remove one teaspoon of milk and replace it with a teaspoon of vinegar.  Viola!  Instant buttermilk!!!!  You might want to check out all of these great baking substitutions.

 

2.  Clean your computer and mouse.  These get pretty dirty (and are germ magnets.  Before you being, turn off your components.  Then, mix equal parts water and vinegar.  Dampen a cloth and then use your fingertip to lightly wipe and scrub your screen and keyboard.  You can dip a Q-Tip into the solution to get into those hard to reach places.  Make sure you to NOT spray the solution onto your devices – always use a dampened cloth.

 

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3.  Remove ball-point pen and crayon.  If you find an ink mark across your table, or your little Picasso’s masterpiece is on her bedroom wall, you can use vinegar to easily remove it.  Just dab some vinegar onto the spot and scrub lightly with a cloth and it should buff right on out!

 

4.  Remove water rings.  There is nothing more frustrating seeing those annoying water rings on your wooden furniture.  You can remove them by mixing equal parts vinegar and olive oil together.  Use a cloth, dampened in the solution to rub out the spot.  Make sure you always scrub along the grain of the furniture.  When the spot has been scrubbed, use a dry cloth and buff it dry and to make it shine!

 

5.  Keep the cats away.  If you have an area of your home where you do not want your cat to perch or hang out, you can spray some vinegar and your kitty will not approach.  You can spray a door way to keep it out of room or even the back of furniture you may not want them to climb on.

 

6.  Remove urine.  If you have a pet, you have probably dealt with an accident or two on your floor.  You can clean it up, but the smell may still remain.  You can use vinegar to help remove the smell completely (and keep your pet from wanting to mark the same spot again in the future).

If it is on carpet or a rug, simply blot the area  until it is dry.  Then, pour a little bit of vinegar on the spot.  Blot that with a towel. Pour a bit more vinegar on the spot again and allow to air dry.  As it evaporates, the odor will evaporate with it.

If the spot is on any other floor, you will first need to test the area to make sure the vinegar will not stain.  Just find a place that is out of regular sight to do this.  Then, mop the floor with equal parts water and vinegar and then dry with a towel.

 

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7.  Removing vomit smell.  It seems that the minute your child says that his or her tummy hurts they throw up.  Of course, before you have a chance to get them to the bathroom or even a bowl to catch it.

First, clean up any pieces (I know, that is such a disgusting thought).  Then, mix a solution of 2 parts water to one part vinegar.  You might want to add a drop or two of dish or laundry soap to your solution as well, which can give it a boost.  Spray the affected area with vinegar and allow to sit (it needs to saturate).  If, in 24 hours, you still smell some of the odor, you can spray again.

You can also try the urine removal method above, which will result in pouring water onto the carpet instead of just spraying it.

 

8.  Clean your paintbrushes.  No matter how well you scrub them after painting, you might still have a few bristles which have paint on them (or you may have forgotten to clean your brush after your last project).  Use vinegar to clean it up!

Just boil 2 cups of vinegar and then place the brush in the pan and allow to “cook” for 10 minutes.  Then, wash in soapy water and it should be clean.  The hot vinegar loosens the paint allowing the brush to come clean!

 

9.  Eliminate pests.  If you have a garden of fresh fruits and or veggies, you want to keep the bugs from eating them. However, since you will be eating them, you do not want to use dangerous chemicals.  You can use a natural version instead!  You will need to fill an empty 2 liter soda bottle with 1 cup of apple cider vinegar and 1 cup of sugar.  Then, slice up a banana into pieces and place it inside.  Finally, fill the bottle with cold water and put on the lid and shake it.  Then, remove the lid and hang from a low branch near your garden and that will attract the pests and keep them out of your garden!

 

10.  Keep animals out of your garden.  We took care of the six legged pests above, but what about those on 4 legs?  To keep out deer, rabbits and other little critters from eating your fresh foods, you can use vinegar.  Soak some old rags in vinegar and place them around the garden.  You will want to soak them weekly, to ensure the vinegar smell is fresh (which is why they do not like them).

 

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11.  Get rid of weeds.  If you have weeds growing in unwanted areas of your lawn or in the cracks of your sidewalk and driveway, you can eliminate them with vinegar!  This time, you need to use the apple cider variety and just spray the cracks and other areas first thing in the season, which can kill the weeks before they start to grow.  If you find one that has already taken root, spray a stream as close to the root as you can get and it will soak down and then kill the weed.

 

12.  Get rid of ants.  If you’ve ever had ants invade, you know how difficult it is to get them to leave. Ants are another pest which does not like the smell of vinegar.  You can use a spray bottle to cover the areas where you see them and where they may be entering your home.  If you see ant hills around the outside of your home, you can spray it on there as well – so that they do not come into your house.

 

13.  Clean your washing machine.  I don’t know if you’ve ever noticed, but sometimes, your washing machine will start to smell musty.  You can clean your washer by using 2 cups of vinegar.  Do not include any soap or clothes in the cycle.  The vinegar will run through the pipes and drains, cleaning them out and making it smell fresher!

Note:  If you are in doubt if you can do this on your machine, make sure you do proper research as some people have reported that the manufacturer does not recommend this method of cleaning.

 

14.  Make dishcloths new again.  If you use kitchen dishcloths (which you can’t wash using bleach), they might start to smell after many uses.  You can strip the smells and make them new again!  Simply boil water in a large pan and add 1 – 2 cups of vinegar.  Add the dishcloths and allow to boil for 10 – 15 minutes.  When done, rinse in hot water and then wash as usual.  For an added level of odor removal, allow them to dry in the sun (which can also help odors to evaporate).

 

15.  Clean your iron.  I know many people do not iron their own clothes.  However, if you are like me, it is an easy way to save money if you or your spouse needs to have pressed clothes (or like the way they look).  Mineral deposits can develop inside of your iron and steam vents.  A way to help eliminate these is to clean your iron with vinegar.

Switch on your iron and make sure it is on the steam setting.  Pour vinegar into the spout (where you normally place water) an let it steam for 5 – 10 minutes.  Then, fill the chamber back up with clean water and repeat the process.  You can also hit the steam flash button and it can help to shoot out the deposits and build up.  Just make sure you have a cloth on beneath it to catch the small particles which will come out.

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16.  Clean your bathroom.  Rather than use the harsh chemicals, you can use vinegar to clean your bathroom!  You can spray vinegar onto mildew stains and use it to scrub them clean.  Scrub your sinks and bathtubs with full strength vinegar and then follow by rinsing with water.

You can clean your glass shower doors by making a solution of 1/2 cup of vinegar, 1 cup of ammonia and 1/4 cup of baking soda and warm water.  Then, use the solution to wipe down your doors (including those horrid water spots).

You can mix a solution of 50/50 water and vinegar to clean your mirrors.  Use one cloth to scrub and then another to polish it clean.  It works best to polish with a microfiber cloth (as it reduces streaks).

Finally, pour 2 cups of vinegar in your toilet before you go to bed.  In the morning, flush it down and it can naturally clean the toilet for you!!

 

17.   Keep your car windows from frosting over.  If you do not have a carport or garage, you can keep the frost from building up on your windows.  Spray the outside of your windows with a vinegar solution (3 parts vinegar to 1 part water).  Unfortunately, this won’t stop the snow from piling up!

 

18.  Clean your wiper blades.  If you notice streaks, but your wipers are not yet needing to be replaced, it may mean that they are just dirty.  Use vinegar to wipe down the blades, keeping them from streaking your windshield.

 

19.  Deodorize your disposal and drains.  This is a fun one that my kids love to help me with – because it is science!!  Place around 1/2 cup of baking soda into your drain.  Then, add around a cup of vinegar.  You will see it bubble and fizz back up out of the drain!  Once the bubbling stops, just run hot water for a minute.  Then, allow it to sit for at least another 10 minutes and then run cold water and it should be fresh again!

 

20.  Clean your stainless steel appliances.  These always get the worst finger prints and smudges on them.  Spray with full strength vinegar and wipe them clean!

 

21.  Naturally freshen the air.  If you find last night’s dinner or the trash you forgot to take outside is still lingering, you can use vinegar to naturally freshen the air.  Mix a pot filled with 1 cup of water with 1/2 cup of vinegar.  Allow to boil until the mixture is nearly gone and the smell should disappear too!

 

22.  Get rid of fruit flies.  It always amazes me that we can be fruit fly free one minute and then have several of them fluttering around our kitchen a few minutes later!  You can actually make a trap for these pests.  Just fill a bowl with apple cider vinger.  Cover with plastic wrap and poke a few holes in it.  The flies will go in and can’t get back out.

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23.  Clean your produce.  When you get home from the store, you want to make sure you clean those fruits and vegetables before you consume them.  Just mix 1 part vinegar to one part water and put into a spray bottle.  Douse the produce with the solution and then rinse with water.

 

24.  Freshen your laundry.  By adding a capful of vinegar to your laundry (along with the regular detergent) you can freshen the clothes and even brighten the colors!

 

25. Flea control.  Believe it or not, you can even use vinegar to keep fleas away!  Mix a solution of equal parts water and vinegar and spray onto your dog’s coat.  Work it in with your hands and allow it to dry.  This will not only repel those fleas, but also help treat and heal the bites they might already have.

 

What other tips do you have to add to our list?  We know there are SO many more – so we’d love to hear from you!!!