18 Blogs with Creative Recipes for Apples on a Stick

July 31st, 2013 by admin

Apple treats on a stick, while a signature fall treat, don’t have to be reserved only for the autumn season. Because apples are available year-round, you can make delicious apple-inspired treats throughout the year. From caramel apples to chocolate dipped treats, there are a variety of ways you can transform an ordinary apple into a delicious dessert. These 18 blogs are stocked with recipes that cover the three C’s of apples on a stick – caramel, candy and chocolate!

Caramel

When deciding to make caramel apples, you can go one of two ways. You can use store bought caramels, which you’ll need to add a little water to and then melt, or you can make your own caramel from scratch. These six blog entries cover recipes that utilize both methods, so you’re able to enjoy a caramel apple any time.

Candy

Candy apples used to be defined by their dark red hue, but now you can make candy apples in any color you choose! You’ll be hard-pressed to find a person who doesn’t like candy apples, and they’re usually an instant and welcome hit at most parties and events. To learn how to make candy apples, read these six blog articles.

Chocolate

Gourmet, chocolate-covered apples are a decadent treat, but you don’t have to spend a fortune buying one at a specialty store. Instead, make up a whole batch at home and let everyone customize their own apples. These six blog posts are full of different ideas for chocolate-dipped apples, and with the help of these recipes you’ll be able to create the perfect custom treat.

25 Blogs Helping You Plan the Perfect Under the Sea Party

July 25th, 2013 by admin

When it comes to planning birthday parties, sometimes ideas seem sparse, and you may find yourself struggling to come up with a unique theme. Instead of exhausting the usual party theme suspects, like superheroes and princesses, try doing an “Under the Sea” party. From sharks and crabs to mermaids, there are plenty of aspects to an “Under the Sea” party that will please both boys and girls. Invitations, decorations, games, food and party favors are all essential parts of any party, and these 25 blog posts will help you pick the perfect one for your sea-themed celebration.

Invitations

For the perfect ocean-themed invitation, send out a message in a bottle to each invitee or craft your own fish with bubbles. If you don’t have the time or patience to handcraft invitations, order some that relate to the theme. These five blog entries examine all types of invitations you can use for your next “Under the Sea” party.

Decorations

When it comes to an “Under the Sea” party, decorations come together in a flash. Create seaweed by hanging green streamers on the wall, string blue bubbles together and hang them from the ceiling and create sea creatures out of balloons. These ideas and more can be found in these five blog articles.

Activities

Going fishing is an obvious game for children at an “Under the Sea” party, and you can create your own fishing hole by using a kiddie pool. Swap out traditional games with sea-themed ones, such as playing pin the crown on the mermaid instead of pin the tail on the donkey. For more “Under the Sea” games and activities, read through these five blogs.

Dessert Table

For the dessert table, you’ll want to go all out. Create a watery back drop for the table, cover the table with a ‘sea’ colored table cloth and drape a fishing net over one side.  If you can find a rustic crate, you could use it to give your table some height.  Take a look at these five blog entries for some adorable themed desserts to put on your dessert table.

Party Favors

Sometimes party favors are the hardest part of the party. To keep things simple, put some candy in a glass bottle or fill a treasure chest with chocolate gold, small toys and beads. Then have the kids go digging for treasures that they can take home with them. More favor ideas can be found in these five blog articles.

How to Create an Art Studio for Your Preschooler on a Dime

July 11th, 2013 by admin

Few things capture kids’ imaginations and keep them entertained the way that creating and experimenting with art does. While a box of crayons and a sheaf of paper are enough to capture kids’ attention for a while, providing an entire space dedicated to creating art is one of the most supportive and effective methods of fostering a continued love of creation. Presenting your children with their very own art studio doesn’t have to cost a fortune, either. With these tips and a bit of creative thinking of your own, you’ll have your budding artists’ juices flowing in no time.

Take Advantage of Available Space

You don’t have to set aside an entire room for a kid-sized art studio. Any nook or cubby in your house will do. Remember, the idea is to give kids an area that’s all their own, where they’re free to experiment with paints, markers and crayons without fears of ruining the furniture. A walk-in closet, area of a large laundry room or even a corner of the kitchen will suffice. Personalizing the space and optimizing it for creation by arranging a kid-height table, accessible shelves and plenty of supplies is all that’s really necessary. Just be sure that the supplies and shelving are accessible without assistance, or you’ll spend more time fetching materials than you’d like.

Create Portable Kits

While there’s something exciting about having a space that’s all his own, your child will also reap the benefits of his own art studio simply by having access to a container he’s able to manage that’s filled with necessary supplies. Pop sidewalk chalk and other outdoor supplies into portable kits so that your little ones are able to take their creative inclinations wherever their spirit moves them.

Snap Up On-Sale Deals

Art supply stores and hobby stores are packed with expensive materials, but they also stock plenty of lower-ticket items that are great for kids. Look for sales at these dedicated stores and snap up great deals so that you’re able to introduce your little ones to new mediums from time to time without breaking the bank.

Think Outside of the Big Retailer Box

Toy stores have lots of art supplies designed to appeal to little ones through clever marketing, but they also have the bolstered prices that come with special markets. Don’t hem yourself or your child in by purchasing exclusively from toy stores. Discount department stores also carry the same brands, often at a fraction of the price. You can also introduce your kids to new and exciting tools that will foster their creativity by purchasing supplies that aren’t branded or marketed to kids.

Use What You Have On Hand

Old newspapers don’t have to go straight to the recycling bin; a handful are great for papier-mâché. Discarded egg cartons are perfect containers for buttons and beads. By looking for ways to reuse things you already have on hand you’ll save money while putting these items to good use through repurposing.

Make the Internet Work For You

There are great deals to be had in brick and mortar stores, and there’s certainly something to be said for supporting a local business. However, there are also great deals on art supplies and kid-sized furniture online, not to mention ideas for placement and studio design. Keep your eyes peeled for outrageous online deals, and take advantage of those clever ideas you see on idea board social networking sites.

Hit Garage Sales and Flea Markets

One man’s trash may be another man’s treasure, and one family’s cast-offs may be your kids’ creative saving grace. When tables will be spattered with paint, stained by markers and drawn on with crayons, snagging used ones at a garage sale that are still in good condition makes more financial sense than spending a fortune on ones that are brand new. Hit flea markets, rummage sales and garage sales for great finds, but keep in mind that used supplies may not always be quite a bargain. Dried paints, crumbled crayons and arid markers aren’t the best tools of the trade, but you’ll be able to spring for great supplies with the money you save by purchasing used furniture and shelving.

21 of the Best Blogs Spotlighting Avocado Recipes

June 27th, 2013 by admin

Despite what many think, the avocado is a member of the fruit family. In fact, the fruit grows on trees and ripens much like another popular fruit – the apple. Avocadoes aren’t just a tasty addition to your dinners, they’re also packed with vitamins, minerals and healthy fats, making it a nutritional powerhouse. For tasty ideas on how to incorporate avocadoes into your meals, take a look at these 21 blog posts.

Main Dish

Avocadoes are often used in dips and appetizers, however they work wonders in main dishes as well. This creamy fruit pairs well with pastas, soups and everything in between! These seven blog entries share several different main course recipes that feature avocado.

Salad

Summertime is the perfect time of year to serve salads for dinner, and creamy avocadoes are the wonderful addition to this crisp, cool meal. For several different takes on how to assemble the perfect summer salad, take a look at these seven blog articles.

Appetizer

Appetizers are a great way to incorporate avocadoes, and you can make everything from guacamole to hummus to mousse with them. The next time you’re having a gathering, try adding avocado into your spread. These seven blog posts find unique ways to incorporate avocado into different appetizers.

27 Blogs with Tons of Songs to Teach Your Kids to Sing

June 24th, 2013 by admin

Childhood is a time that’s filled with stories and songs. You undoubtedly can recall several songs from your childhood that made a lasting impression – songs that you likely will find yourself inadvertently humming or singing to your own child. Some are silly, some are thoughtful, but they all provide an irreplaceable memory. Remembering each and every lyric, however, may not come back to you quite as easily. These 27 blog posts are dedicated to popular childhood songs, complete with lyrics for each, so that you can pass on timeless favorites to your children – and maybe learn a new one along the way!

Road trip Songs

Face it; long car trips are boring for kids. What happens when kids get bored? They start bickering and fighting with each other, which is a scenario that isn’t good for even the most patient of parents. Singing your way through the miles with your kids can help  make the time fly and keep everyone in good spirits. These nine blog entries will provide a list of songs and lyrics for you to sing on your next car trip.

Campfire Songs

Whether you’re taking the kids camping or lighting a fire pit in the backyard, some campfire songs can liven the mood. Singing funny songs together will turn an ordinary night sitting around the fire into a special memory that the kids will treasure for years to come. Take a look at these nine blog articles to find the lyrics for some old favorites.

Camp Songs

Kids’ camps are notorious for their many camp songs, and most have a song for getting up in the mornings, going to bed at night and everything that happens in between. Even chores can become more enjoyable with the help of a catchy song. Check out these nine blog posts for a variety of camp songs, then pick out your favorites and share with your kids!

25 Blogs Featuring Copycat Recipes that You Can Make for Your Family Tonight

June 23rd, 2013 by admin

If you hate paying high prices for your favorite dishes when you go out to a restaurant, there may be a solution that allows you to enjoy these favorites without their hefty price tag. These 25 bloggers have spent a lot of time perfecting different recipes so that they are as close to the restaurant meals as possible. With these recipes you can recreate your favorite restaurant dishes from home, so you can enjoy them for a fraction of the cost. You’ll find soups, entrees, sides, beverages and desserts in the following blog recipes. Make these delicious dishes for your family tonight.

Soups

What could be better on a chilly day than a bowl of hot and steamy soup?  These recipes are simple to make and will hit all of the same flavor bells and whistles that you are used to when you order your favorite soup out.  The cool thing about making it yourself is that you get to eat all of the leftovers too!  Check out these five blog posts and try a new soup recipe with your family.

  1. Zuppa Toscana Soup {Olive Garden Copycat Recipe}
  2. Olive Garden Copycat {Chicken & Gnocchi Soup)
  3. Potato Cheese Soup (Ruby Tuesday Copycat Recipe)
  4. Copycat Bob Evans Cheddar Baked Potato Soup
  5. Panera Bread’s Copycat Broccoli and Cheese Soup

Entrée

Enjoy your favorite restaurant meal at home with these five simple recipes.  Remember, it’s very important to season everything well; most restaurant chefs use a lot of seasoning and salt in their dishes. Make everything from a batch of Applebee’s riblets to a Chili’s steak and loaded baked potato. Find these recipes and more on the next five blog entries.

  1. Honey BBQ Riblets
  2. Steak and Loaded Baked Potato
  3. Chicken Tacos (Café Rio Shredded Chicken Copycat Recipe)
  4. Tangy Jumbo Shrimp (Panda Express Copycat)
  5. Recipe Swap: Copycat Chick-Fil-A Sandwiches

Sides

Doll up any weeknight meal with a side dish from your family’s favorite restaurant.  How about adding cheddar bay biscuits to your menu to enjoy with some pot roast or meatloaf?  That’s the beauty of these copycat recipes, you can pick and choose what you want to fix and pair it with something totally different. The only bad thing is that you still have to do the dishes.

  1. Parmesan Creamed Spinach (Ruth’s Chris Creamed Spinach Copycat Recipe)
  2. Copycat Red Lobster Cheese Biscuits
  3. Egg Rolls (Copycat PF Chang’s)
  4. Stoney Puppy Copycat Recipe! (Stoney River Steakhouse)
  5. Copycat Recipe of Portillo’s Chopped Salad

Beverages

Tired of paying $5 for your morning latte?  Now you don’t have to! Instead, you can make it yourself right in your very own kitchen.  How about enjoying that fancy cocktail that you and your spouse experienced at that quaint little tavern?  You can make your own version of the Bye and Bye and enjoy it in your own back yard.  This drink is from a tavern by the same name in Portland, OR.

  1. The Bye and Bye (a Copycat Drink Recipe)
  2. 4 Copycat Starbuck’s Drink Recipes
  3. A&W Rootbeer
  4. Outback Margarita (Copycat)
  5. Summertime Copy Cat Drink Recipe: Taco Bell’s Limeade Sparkler

Dessert

Sometimes it’s better for your waistline if you have just one piece of a decadent dessert to enjoy, but if you’d like to have more, you might find your favorite restaurant dessert in these five blog posts.  Maybe it doesn’t have to be just a restaurant dessert, how about making your favorite Girl Scout cookie to enjoy during those months when you can’t buy them?  Check out these five blog articles and enjoy something tasty tonight.

  1. Cheesecake Factory  Carrot Cake Cheesecake Copycat Recipe
  2. Copycat McDonald’s Shamrock Shake
  3. Sprinkles Red Velvet Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting Copycat Recipe
  4. Olive Garden’s Lemon Cream Cake! Copycat Recipe
  5. Copycat Samoa Girl Scout Cookies

Now that you have the recipes for these copycat favorites you can surprise your family with a restaurant night at home!

27 Blogs Illustrating How to Decorate Cookies for All Occasions

June 6th, 2013 by admin

With the wealth of different ways you can create cookies, it’s no wonder that no two cookies are ever the same. Even a basic sugar cookie recipe has the potential to be vastly different from another recipe bearing the same name. And the differences don’t stop there; decorating your sugar cookies opens up a whole new world of possibilities when it comes to creating a cookie that is truly unique. These 27 blog entries are stocked with tutorials for decorating all sorts of ways, so your sugar cookies are never left without a fun and festive top coat again.

Spring

The signs of spring are plentiful, from budding flowers and butterflies to umbrellas and rain boots, there are endless ways to depict the coming of the new season. These nine blog posts explain how to perfectly capture the essence of spring as you decorate a batch of cookies.

  • Cherry Cookies Seeing cherry blossoms begin to bloom is a sure sign of spring, and these cookies with their cherries are a cute nod to the season.
  • Hydrangea Cookies This blogger uses brush embroidery to achieve these flower cookies.
  • All About Mom Mother’s Day Cookies Edible markers make it easy to decorate cookies with all of mom’s favorite things with minimal fuss.
  • Flower Cookies for Mom The flowers cookies you’ll find on this post are perfect for showing Mom you love her on Mother’s Day, as well as for celebrating the changing of the season.
  • Make Your Own Adorable Chickies Baby animals are always a sign that spring is upon us, and these cookies decorated with baby chicks are perfect for an Easter or other spring celebration.
  • Taking Flight You’ll learn how to create realistic looking butterflies for your cookies with the help of this post.
  • Pressed (for Time) Flowers The next time you find yourself pressed for time when it comes to decorating cookies, use this post as inspiration for quick flower cookies.
  • Easter Bunny Sugar Cookies Too cute for words, these bunny cookies are perfect for everything from an Alice in Wonderland themed party to an Easter celebration.
  • April Showers Bring May Flowers Sanding sugar gives these cookies a unique texture.

Father’s Day

It’s no secret that parents love homemade gifts the best, so this Father’s Day why not bake Dad a batch of tasty cookies instead of buying him another tie? To personalize the cookies, decorate them with something that you know Dad likes. For some inspiration, take a look at these nine blog articles.

Anytime

No matter what time of year it is, there’s always an occasion that calls for cookies. Whether it’s a sick friend in need of a pick-me-up or a shower for an expecting mother, cookies are the perfect way to show you care. The next nine blog posts are full of tutorials for cookies for any and all occasions.

25 Blogs Naming the Top Foods to Fix for Dad on Father’s Day

June 3rd, 2013 by admin

They say that the way to a man’s heart is through his stomach, so why not take that concept and run with it for Father’s Day this year by whipping up some tasty meals for Dad? To kick off Father’s Day on the right foot, start by serving Dad breakfast in bed. Then pack up some hearty sandwiches and make a day of it at a local park or lake. After a day of being outside, Dad is going to be really hungry, so grill up some delicious food and top off the evening with a decadent dessert. Finally, end the day by making Dad a manly cocktail to enjoy while watching his favorite sporting event on television.  Check out these 25 blog entries for help with recipes that would be perfect for Dad on Father’s Day.

Breakfast of Champions

Wake Dad up with a hearty meal of a steak and gravy open-faced sandwich or a grilled breakfast pizza.  After all, Father’s Day only comes once per year, and you want to treat your dad or your hubby like a king!  Let the kids help prepare the tray to take into Dad so that they can surprise him with breakfast in bed.  These five blog articles will help you come up with some manly breakfast ideas.

Super Sandwiches

Whip up one of these meaty sandwiches for lunch on Father’s Day.  Whether you are sitting around the pool or going for a hike, you can find a sandwich that is right for the activity.  These five blog posts feature sandwich recipes to get you started.

Great Grilling

For dinner, turn to the grill, where you can grill up something light or filling depending on how Dad is feeling.  After a day outside, Dad may be ready for a spicy steak off the grill. Take a look at these five blogs highlighting dishes that can be made on the grill.

Dazzling Desserts

No Father’s Day would be complete without a celebratory dessert recognizing the guest of honor.  If you have plenty of time, you may want to make the “steak” brownies for dad.  If dad would appreciate something on the lighter side, the fruit pizza might be a better option.  Check out these five blog entries to gather some Father’s Day dessert ideas.

Sensational Sippers

Let Dad kick back and relax on Father’s Day by making him a manly cocktail that is just as strong as he is.  For drink options, you can test out the recipes in these five blog posts.

30 Blogs with the Best Cake Pop Recipes

May 21st, 2013 by admin

The latest culinary craze to sweep the world, cake pops are delectably delicious treats that you can create in no time. You can get creative in the kitchen with fancy cake pops, or keep them simple to produce a quick snack that everyone can enjoy. Any kind of cake can, with a little ingenuity, become a portable bite of sweet, convenient goodness. The recipes and ideas in these 30 blogs will get you on your way and, if you’re feeling adventurous, inspire you to create your very own cake pop recipes, too.

Cake Pop Utensils and Tutorials

Baking is a precise art. You need the right tools and know-how to create a masterpiece, so make sure you’re equipped for the task. When making cake pops, there’s the easy way and the hard way. With the guides in these five blogs, you can bypass trial-and-error and get right down to producing perfect cake pops.

Easy Cake Pops

Cake pops, at first glance, give the impression of being incredibly easy to create. Still, great things come to those who wait, so don’t get ahead of yourself. By starting off with basic cake pop recipes, you will get the chance to experiment with simple, cheap ingredients. Once you have mastered the basics, you can tackle more complicated baking methods and decoration techniques. These five blogs contain simple and easy to make cake pop recipes that you can cut your teeth on.

Chocolate Cake Pops

Chocolate cake pop recipes are among the most popular, which is no surprise, given that almost everyone seems to love chocolate. From the simple to the sublime, chocolate cake pops are melt-in-your-mouth delicious. If you feel the need to tantalize your sweet tooth, you will love the recipes that these five bloggers have created especially for your tasting pleasure.

Fancy Cake Pops

If you want to impress your family and friends with your cake pop delights, then it’s time to get a little more creative with your recipes. Not everyone can create ostentatious cake pops, however, so you will need a little help from the experts. The five bloggers in this list have spent countless hours in the kitchen perfecting recipes that will wow and amaze your guests.

Novelty Cake Pops

For those special occasions when even the fanciest of cake pops doesn’t quite make the grade, you need to introduce some novel ideas. Whether it’s for Christmas, Valentine’s Day or the birthday celebration of someone very special, novelty cake pops are a real game changer. Kids love them, adults adore them and they are extremely fun to make. There are thousands of themes that you can incorporate into your novelty cake pops, so let your imagination run wild. In these five blogs, you will find a number of recipes for novelty cake pops, as well as hints and tips on how to make your own recipe ideas a reality.

Low-Fat Cake Pops

As delicious as cake pops are, they are still cakes, and potentially full of fattening, unhealthy ingredients. Even if you are watching what you eat or concerned about health, you needn’t worry. There are plenty of healthy cake pop recipes available; you just need to know where to look. With that in mind, you can start off by creating and sampling these low-fat, healthy cake pop recipes, brought to you by the five expert bloggers on this list.

25 of the Best Blogs Showing You How to Plan an End of School Year Party

May 13th, 2013 by admin

Soon the pencils and notebooks will be put away and the computers will be turned off, signaling that another school year has come to an end. The kids have worked hard and should celebrate all that they have learned and achieved over the last nine months.  To kick off the party planning take a look at these 25 blog entries to discover creative ideas for throwing the best end of year party ever.

Theme

Picking the right theme for the party will make the party planning go a lot easier.  Details will fall into place like decorations, food and activities.  If the party will be held at school you will want to involve the teacher in the planning to make sure that all of the rules are being followed, if not then the sky is the limit.  Pool parties are common end of year gatherings because the venue can accommodate a lot of students.  These five blog posts will present some theme ideas to help during the planning stages.

Decorations

Set a budget for the decorations because it is easy to go overboard if you have a theme that lends itself easily to lots of decorations.  Determine a color scheme and buy the paper goods in those colors.  Taking the theme into consideration create an atmosphere that makes the theme clear to everyone who attends the party.  For ideas on simple party decorations check out these five blog entries.

Food

It wouldn’t be a party without food, but make sure that the food is kid-friendly so that everyone can find something to eat at the party.  Try to stick with the theme if possible or just go with standard party food like pizza and cupcakes.  Little tricks like toppers and party picks can tie any food into the theme.  For food tips and tricks take a look at these five blog articles.

Activities

Plan plenty of games and activities for the party to make sure the kids stay active and involved.  Sometimes one game takes off and is everyone’s favorite, if that happens go with it.  Be flexible with the party schedule and if the kids are having a good time let them keep going.  The same holds true for an activity that falls flat, don’t torture the kids, just move on to the next activity.  To find game ideas for the party read through these five blog posts.

Party Favors

Kids love to have a little something to take home at the end of the party, but it doesn’t have to be a lot and it doesn’t have to break the bank.  Go with something that follows the theme like a jar of cookies for a cookies and milk party or cotton candy for a circus party.  For more cost saving favor ideas look at these five blog entries.