Category Archives: Tip of the Day

Melon Ice Cubes

This is undoubtedly my favorite use for left over fruit!  It’s so simple and is impressive when served to flavor water or cocktails.  Here’s all you have to do.  Take your left over melon and puree in a food processor.  Pour into ice cube molds and let freeze.  Then serve in lemonade or margaritas or whatever makes your heart content!


Filed under Food, Healthy, How To, Tip of the Day

Week of Watermelon!

Here goes… This week is all about watermelon.  Since they’re at the just coming into the peek of their ripeness in our area, I thought it would be fun to ponder different recipes, tips and tricks for this iconic summertime treat.  Stay tuned each day this week as I share another one of my findings…

How do you know if it’s ripe?

Obviously, without cutting a melon and taking a bite, it’s never a guarantee that you’re getting the perfect melon, but with just a few tips, you’ll be picking the best ones, more often than not.  Here’s what I do… First, look for a melon that is symmetrical in shape and heavy for its size.  Next, look for the couche – that’s the stop where it rested on the ground while it was growing.  This part is important.  If you don’t see the couche, it means the melon wasn’t ripened on the vine, and you’re not going to get that sweet flavor you’re after.  Finally, you should have a clean indentation where the melon was removed from the vine.  If there’s any bit of vine left on there, it was picked before peek ripeness.  Happy seed spitting!

Leave a comment

Filed under all about, Food, Healthy, Tip of the Day

Tip of the Day: Fertilizing Container Gardens

One of the best gardeing tips I’ve ever received (and is reiterated everytime I see my mother-in-law during the Spring and Summer monts) is the necessity of fertilizing my plants that live in pots on the front porch and in containers on the balcony. 

Every year I say, yeah, yeah, yeah… I’ll get on that… and I do… About once a month during the hot, draining summer.  Well this year has been different.  I discovered Alaska Liquid Fertilizer and I’ve been on it… and on it once a month.  My containers look amazing – it makes me so happy everytime I walk in or out the door and see them. 

So, my tip for today, this week and really all summer is to feed your plants.  Water alone just won’t do it.  Give this plant food a try, just plug your nose while doing it since the dead, emulsified fish that make it up stink 🙂


Filed under Gardening, How To, Tip of the Day

Tip of the Day: Rosemary Rubdown


Now that grilling season is officially upon us, here’s one of my favorite tips for the grill…

When brushing meat or fish with olive oil while grilling, try adding some of your favorite herbs to the brush.  The oil from the herbs comes out when encountering the heat from the grill and your proteins will pick up the extra flavoring.

It’s simple to do – I use a rubber band to hold rosemary in place around my basting brush, but kitchen twine works well too!

Happy Grilling!


Filed under Food, Healthy, How To, Tip of the Day

Tip of the Day: How to Store Candles

Candles should be kept in a cool, dry, dark place for longevity.  Why you ask?  Moisture causes the wick to be damp, making lighting more difficult.  Heat can cause the candles to warp, making them not as tall and straight.  And finally, light causes the colors to fade quickly.

Leave a comment

Filed under Home Keeping, Tip of the Day

How to: Tie Bows

To adorn your boxes with beautiful bows simply grab a couple of rolls of ribbon and follow the directions below from Better Homes & Gardens.

click here for the dior bow

click here for the florist bow

click here for the tiered bow

click here for the two-toned bow

click here for the classic bow

Leave a comment

Filed under crafts, gifts, How To, Tip of the Day

Tip of the Day: Using Dried Beans

Dried beans can be quite the money saver over canned, especially when bought in bulk.  Here’s how I soak and cook them.

  • Garbanzo+beans+1I start by sorting through the beans to make sure there aren’t any little stones or debris.
  • Then place in a large bowl and cover with double the amount of water as there were beans.
  • Cover the bowl and let it sit overnight, or at least for 8 hours.
  • Drain the beans and transfer to a large pot.
  • Cover with water by 2 inches and bring to a boil.
  • Reduce to a simmer, cover partially, and cook until tender.  This will take between 1 and 2 hours.
  • Use as usual.  Enjoy!


Filed under Ethnic Food, Food, Healthy, How To, Tip of the Day

Tip of the Day: Freezing Cookies

Who doesn’t love homemade cookies at the drop of a hat without all the time and mess associated with whipping up a batch just so you can serve a couple for dessert?  It’s simple.  I promise.  Next time you’re making a batch of cookies to take to the church bakesale, turn it into a double batch (just multiply everything in the recipe by two).

Bake up the ones you’re taking with you and simply freeze the rest of the dough for cookies at a moment’s notice. Here’s how..

Scoop dough into balls the size you would use when baking.  Place on a baking sheet, leaving just enough room so the balls of dough don’t touch each other.  Once the sheet is full, place in the freezer for an hour.

Take the baking sheet out of the freezer and place the frozen balls into a ziplock bag.  Frozen cookie dough will keep in the freezer up to 3 months!  When you’re ready to bake the cookies, there’s no need to defrost the dough.  Just add a few minutes to the baking time and voila, homemade cookies with no fuss!

See, wasn’t that easy?


Leave a comment

Filed under baking, Food, How To, Tip of the Day

Tip of the Day: Take a Slice

scissorsSharpening dull scissors is as easy as keeping aluminum foil in the house.  When scissors start to cut with less than stellar results, fold a piece of foil into three layers and cut with the scissors ten times.  You’ll be amazed by the instant result!

Leave a comment

Filed under Home Keeping, Tip of the Day

Tip of the Day: Icing the Cooler

Ice_cubes_openphotoWhen stuffing the cool for summer picnics and tailgating it’s important to remember to properly ice.  In the summer heat it doesn’t take long for things like mayo and hamburger meat to start growing bacteria if not kept cool enough.

Here’s the rule – a half of a pound of ice for every quart of cooler.  So, if you’ve got a 40 quart cooler, you’ll need 20 pounds of ice to adequately keep the temperature at bay.

Happy Summer Picnicing!

1 Comment

Filed under entertaining, Food, How To, Tip of the Day