NoTakeOut – Great Meals Made Easy

nto_logoHas it been pretty hectic around your house? Do you feel like you have no time to get dinner on the table when you get home? Well NoTakeOut has made it easy on you, they have great meals made easy for anyone on the go.

THE SKINNY: No more mediocre meals cobbled together last minute.  No more trolling recipe websites to figure out what side dish might work with steamed halibut.  No more shopping fiascos — like when you arrived home without eggplant for the ratatouille. helps you plan, prep and cook an entire meal, not just one dish.  We provide a complete menu, a shopping list and a game plan – basically, we help you organize to go from kitchen to table with ease.

‘Making mealtime manageable’ is kind of a mantra for us.  When you say you’re busy, we get it: you’re taking care of kids, working, shopping, maybe grabbing a workout –  oh yeah, and the laundry… You don’t need another hassle!  Our goal is to make food, meals and dining-at-home an easy family ritual and a daily pleasure.

Each day they give you a menu, with a side dish and even suggestions on what wine goes best with the recipe of the day. Tools you may need, shopping list and pantry items. And they give you serving size, prep time and total time. Check out NoTakeOut for yourself and start cooking tonight!

10 Holiday Savings Tips

Christmas BaubleCan you believe it, Halloween is come and gone and we are staring straight into the eyes of what we like to call ‘The Holidays”! Yikes! Yes in the past I was always ready for this time of year with not much to do but this year I have a lot left undone, and not much money to do it in. If you are in that same boat check out the tips below and start saving money today.

1. Save money on stamps by sending Christmas postcards. And only send them to the people you would like to get in touch with the most.

2. Using the Christmas cards you received last year you can make your own postcards – saving on the price of the postcards.

3. Make your own bows from newspaper and magazines – Click here for easy gift bow instructions.

4. Wrap your gifts in what you already have – left over material(you can even cut up old clothes you don’t wear), magazine ads, newspaper funnies, and old wrapping paper.

5. Make your own gift tags – cut up old Christmas card, you can even use a deck of cards like they did here.

6. Decorate with what you already have. Hang up your Children’s art work, fill a glass bowl with old bulbs or pine cones, string popcorn and cranberries to hang on the tree and along the fire mantel, use pine tree clipping for decoration and as a bonus it will make the house smell beautiful.

7. When looking for gifts, check out your local Goodwill, a lot of times you will find brand new merchandise from Target or other well known stores that donate their over merchandise. The cost of these brand new items are usually only a couple dollars.

8. Make your own gifts. There are so many easy fun project for the whole family to make and homemade is always best.

9. Save on shipping and deliver gifts in person when you can.

10. Always pay with cash, you will buy only the necessities because watching cash leave your hands is much harder then using the credit card.

PVC Pipe Kids Sprinkler

diagram2There is still a month left of summer, and in some states August is the best month for good sunny weather or too hot to not have some sort of sprinkler or pool for the kids to play in. My friends made one of these fun sprinklers for their kids and they said it works great and the kids love it. From the Disney Family Fun online site, The Deluxe Kid Wash.

Craft Materials:

  • Eight 10-foot lengths of 3/4-inch PVC pipe
  • These 3/4-inch PVC fittings: 12 T’s, 2 crosses, 7 elbows, 4 caps, one 1-inch to 3/4-inch T, 1 straight fitting and 1 female hose adapter.
  • 1 pool noodle
  • Craft foam
  • Permanent markers
  • String
  • 3 large sponges
  • 40 feet of nylon lawn chair webbing
  • Paper
  • Fasteners
  • Adhesive-backed velcro

1. Cut the Pieces and Make the Waterholes
Using a hacksaw or PVC-pipe cutter, cut the pipe into the lengths shown below. Be sure to sweep or vacuum up the plastic dust. Use a 1/8-inch bit to drill waterholes as shown above: 12 holes each in crosspieces X and Y, spaced 2 to 3 inches apart; 3 holes, all on the same side, in each of the 2 side pieces shown, and 3 holes at the tops of 2 of the caps.

2. Assemble the Frame
Connect the fittings and pipe sections as shown in the diagram at the top of the page. Use a mallet to pound the pieces firmly together for extra stability.

Continue reading “PVC Pipe Kids Sprinkler”

9 Unusual Uses for Restaurant Coasters

coasters_sYou know the pulpboard coasters you get from the bar or restaurant. The ones they stick under your drinks? It seems most people take home or have taken home coasters a time or two in their lives, but what do you do once you get them home, they aren’t good for much.

1. Use the coasters as buffers for liquid dribbles in your refrigerator or cabinets. Just put a cardboard coaster down under your condiments and keep the fridge and cabinets clean and free from hard to clean stains.

2. You can reuse them as coasters, just keep a few fun ones on the table for guests to use when they come over.

3. Your kids might enjoy using them as safe-to-throw frisbees.

4. Level a coffee table or small table. Stick a coaster under the leg of a coffee table to keep it level.

5. Fire starter. Use a handful of cardboard coasters to start your fire.

6. Collect them. As fun as collecting matches, people collect cardboard coasters and display them for their friends to see.

7. For decorating cards or scrap books. These cardboard coasters have amazing and fun pictures on them, making them perfect for craft projects.

8. Bookmark. Perfect for marking your place in a book.

9. Use to jot notes down on when no pad of paper is available.

Spruce up Your Home without Spending Money

Courtesy of Real Simple

You can spruce up your house without spending money simply by using the stuff you already have. Because sometimes, especially in these economically hard days, it pays to reinvent instead of reinvest. Over at Real Simple I found these no money make over ideas.

There is no need to buy new stuff when everything you need is already within reach. If you are in the mood to redecorate, try one of these magical-yet-manageable transformations that you can pull off in a pinch.

Add a natural touch – Brighten up the black hole by sticking a plant inside the fireplace. Use plants that don’t require a lot of lights, such as a fern.

Place a quilt over your headboard – If your bed is boring and you want to add some color, place a quilt over the headboard frame.

Place art against the wall – If you were planning on buying large piece of furniture to conceal those ugly cords running along the floor, just use some framed art and set them against the wall to hide those wires.

Use bracelets for napkin rings – The bracelets can add a very festive fun touch to your table.

Dress up your dresser – Try tying colorful ribbons around the knobs for a splash of color.

Left over paint – Use your left over paint to spruce up a chair or small table by painting just the legs.

Spruce up your vanity – Use mismatched table ware to store your toiletries in. Grab your seldom used table ware and arrange them on a platter on your vanity to hold your toiletries.

These are just a few fun ways to spruce up your home. Go through your closets and start pulling out items you have stashed away and try to use them in new ways. Check out Real Simple for more fun ways to refresh your home.